Monday, January 30, 2012

Tuesday Travel #5 [San Francisco, CA]



I have been to San Francisco, California once when we passed by there going to Hawaii. We took a Space-A flight [military flight] at Travis Air Force Base. While in that area, we decided to drive to San Francisco and made use of the whole day that we have to wait for our flight to Aloha state. I know there are lots of places to see in the city, but we don't have enough time. We plan of going back there when God permits. Below were the only places that we went to.

We walked along the Embarcadero street and checked out different shops that we passed by. We had the experience of walking through the Port of San Francisco, which is very famous and have seen it in many movies. I had a picture under the Fisherman's Wharf sign but can't find it in my files.

We had our lunch at Bubba Gump restaurant. Our table was situated in the window area and we can see the Alcatraz across.

When dusk came, we drove to one of the landmarks of California, the Golden Gate Bridge. It was windy and we don't have warm clothes, thus we didn't stay there long. After few pictures taken and gasping the cool San Francisco air, we proceeded back to Travis and patiently waiting for the flight to Hawaii.

Playing the Guitar

I know some basic chords in playing a guitar, but I wanted to practice more and play without looking at guitar chord. The last time hubby came back from his deployment, he brought a guitar home. He said he acquired it. One of his buddy don't want to do the hassle of bringing it back here in the US so he gave it to my husband. Hubby just wrapped it with bubble wrap because there was no case for it.

We have it here at home and I get to play it once in a while. Last Christmas I played some Christmas songs because our girls want to hear me play it. We bought new strings and have tuned up. Good thing there is the internet to search for guitar chords if I don't know what it is. If I have more time after my online studies is finished, I will try my best to practice playing the guitar and maybe look for guitar for kids so I can give one for our daughter.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Pressured

Yeah, I feel so pressured now to finish my certificate program for Medical Transcription. I am already on my extension. I am paying every month for this extension. I only have two months left to finish and I still have three sessions including the pre-employment test. I hope I can make it through coz it will be too much of a waste if I don't. I know I could have make it without the extension but juggling everything is very overwhelming. Having two little ones to take care too and the household chores and family as a whole makes it difficult to balance the time.

Starting tomorrow I need to have a proper game plan on how to tackle my school work. Hubby is not always here at home because of work and out of town trainings so I don't have somebody to watch the kids while I do my school stuffs. The older one is okay and can already understand if I don't want to be disturbed, but the little one still needs my full attention when she is awake. If this entails for me to have a sitter for few days a week just so I can go through all my practice dictations without distraction, then so be it. But I will do my best to make use of my time and not procrastinate.

Okay, I am done ranting :-) I feel better now that I have this out for all to read. I will have myself accountable to y'all :-) Do keep me in your prayers so I can get through this haul and finish this program.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Pinterest

The Author of this post is Cheryl Martinez.

Have you guys heard of Pintrest? It's a new website that everybody in my neighborhood is talking about and I just don't really see what all the fuss is. I went on the other day and it looks to me a bunch of pictures all strung together, none of them really having anything to do with each other. If you ask me, Louisiana Internet can be a big waste of time if you're not using it the right way so I prefer when I get online to focus on things like answering e-mails and checking my social media accounts. Every now and then I'll send some pictures to my mom would do a little online shopping but I don't have time for frivolous sites that don't do anything but waste the precious moments I have with my children. I know I sound like a total Internet snob and I don't mean to but I feel like in today's day and age people are too obsessed with technology and not spending enough time with each other.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

366 Blog Photo Challenge #20 [Fashionista]

[Naay taping si Madam!]

If you have a little girl I know you can relate with this. Our DD1 started to like dress so much when she was around 2-1/2-year-old. From then until now she like to always wear a dress. I will have to bribe her with something just so she will wear pants and shirt.

This #20 entry for 366 Blog Photo Challenge above was taken when our DD1 was 3-year-old. That was the height of her having strong affinity to dresses and blings. She is a fashionista wanna-be. I don't know about you but it is also fun to dress up our little princess.

Medical Malpractice Insurance

The high cost of healthcare here in the US is always a subject that almost all individuals are passionate to talk about. In political arena, politicians debate over this subject matter and seemed like nobody can give a better solution on how to solve the healthcare crisis. I have read an article that says one thing that makes the healthcare expensive is because doctors order tests that some of it are not even necessary. If a person don't have healthcare insurance and needs medical attention, the more that he or she will be drowned in debt if he/she will be asked or subjected to different testings to get a diagnosis.

I think, in my opinion, the medical liability of the medical professional is at stake thus, they wanted to make sure before giving their final diagnosis to order battery of tests for their patients. Although they have professional liability insurance but I am pretty sure nobody wants to use it. The high cost of medical malpractice insurance plus their license is what's at stake once medical lawsuit is filed against them. I am not well versed of the medical malpractice law but one thing I'm sure, no doctors would want to be sued.

For those medical professional that wanted to avail or compare medical malpractice insurance, you can check out and get insurance quote for medical malpractice see the different rates with different specialty. I do hope that congress can find a way also to lower the cost of this insurance and work together to fix the healthcare system.

Under Height

I am not blessed with a towering height but my being petite and cute is why my hubby is attracted to me, or so it seems [smile]. Anyways, one of my possession that I can't live without when I am doing house chores is the two step stool that hubby bought me. Yes, since I lack the height and we have a standard height cabinetry in the house, this step stool is a must. I prefer using it than climbing on the counter without it. I don't want any accidents, and I don't want the kids to copy me.

Before, I used one of our bar stool but it is very awkward to drag the bar stool everywhere in the house. With the step stool, it is light weight, I can fold it with ease and store it inside the jacket closet. I am so glad hubby bought me one. It makes it easier for me to reach higher areas in the house.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tuesday Travel #4 [Northwest Trek Wildlife Park]



We haven't been traveling lately, so my entry for today's Tuesday Travel is our old captures from our visit to Northwest Trek Wildlife Park. We've been there twice in the past with our DD1. Our DD2 haven't been there, so we may have to arrange another escapade there in the summer if Daddy's schedule permits.

Northwest Trek Wildlife Park is not your ordinary park. The experience is different from other parks that you can see. They are more focused on preserving the nature and the living organisms. You can see different animals in a natural habitat. Although some are in cage but just so the wild animals can't really harm the people or vice versa.

Above is a tram tour. There is a narrator that will explain the history and and how they maintain the park, how the animals are being taken cared of, what are the different species to be found, and many other information.

These are just few of the animals you can spot once the tram travels along the wildlife park.

Aside from the land animals, they also have birds, water animals present, fresh and salt water alike. The kids will surely love it. This wildlife park is very educational in many ways. A great place to commune with nature and educate our kids.

What I Like About the Parks

You know, if you come from a third world country you can understand where I'm coming from with this comparison. I grew up in a small rural community and I did not experience playing in a park with amenities in different colors and types. When I got here in the US I was so amazed to see big parks and almost everything are in. It is free and kids and adults can enjoy.

Our house is just a stone throw away from an athletic center here in our area. I can just walk going there in a given nice weather. Since it is the region's athletic center, there are playing fields around it for baseball, soccer, basketball, track and field, bike area, walking pathways, and many others. I like it that near the playing fields there are portable bleachers and aluminum bleachers that watchers can sit in comfortable to watch every game.

The park I am talking also has park sheds where people can rent out for any occasions. I have friends celebrated birthdays for their kids over there. The kids have a big place to run around as well as enjoy using the park amenities. I know in some parks not only kids can enjoy, even four-legged friends as well. They have their own area too. Good thing is that there are dog exercise equipment and pet wet stations that pets can use for them to enjoy.

If only we have nice weather everyday that would not entail me to do too much preparation, I will bring the kids to the park everyday. They love playing at the park. It is also good for them to have the physical exercise that the park offers. It can build their stability and decision making process. If you have kids, you can really appreciate what a park can give to your kids.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Tuesday Travels # 3



Below are some of the places worth checking out in Seattle, Washington. I know there are lots to see in the city but we don't have the chance to check it out yet. Maybe when the weather permits and we have enough time, we will explore the city more.

This building is the Seattle Arts Museum. I haven't been inside yet.

This big water fountain is located in the Seattle Center. During summer time and there is activity in the center, this is the best hang out area of those who wanted to cool off from the heat.
One place I love to visit when we are in Seattle is the Pike Place Market. It is like a wet market where you can find lots of fresh produce, sea foods, vegetables, fresh flowers, different kinds of herbs, and many others. They have restaurants inside if you love to try different cuisine.

Video Download

I am so thankful that you can now do youtube video download fast and easy. I have lots of good short video for DIY projects that I wanted to download and access in my PC conveniently. As you all know, when I started searching for a how-to video on youtube and found lots of results I got hooked into it. Not only it is entertaining but very informational and educational as well.

Among other things that I love to watch on youtube, is cooking video of recipes that I wanted to try cooking as well. I also found a good video of doing crafts. As a matter of fact this past December I watched on youtube a video on how to make Christmas decors. If I have enough time this coming Christmas I am going to watch another video so I will do all my Christmas decors. Decors are really expensive and if you make your own you can save more. This will be my new goal, to save on decors since there are lots of resources to watch if you need step-by-step tutorial.

Driving in the Snow

We have a very bad weather forecast for the whole week. It is mostly rain and snow or combination of both in some days. It started snowing here on Saturday. Actually this is the first snow experience we had for this winter season. Last week my husband's truck had the engine light came on. He had it checked and diagnosed at the auto shop. He also said he needed to have his water and coolant pump checked because he don't want his old vehicle heat up and stall in the middle of a snow storm. He had it done on Friday.

Good thing my husband is good when it comes to fixing autos. He only spent around $5 for a wire that connects to the spark plug. As to the pump, everything works good. If he has to go to the shop and have it fix, I am pretty sure the labor cost is much higher than the parts. Now I am confident his truck will not stall when he is driving to work with a snowy weather.

366 Blog Photo Challenge # 14 [Eating While Sleeping]


This is my # 14 entry for 366 Blog Photo Challenge.

Kids have a lot of funny side to show. They are resilient, flexible, and do things in a really cute way. Last week we were at a friend's house for lunch. All of us have kids and they were playing. We were singing [videoke] when our DD2 came to me with a piece of cake in her hand. She was eating. I told her to sit on the couch. I don't want the crumbs all over the floor. She sat down beside me and long before I know she was dozing off while still eating her cake. I thought it was really funny and cute. My friend took a video and I took a picture of her. Little ones really have a talent :-)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

8 Crazy Deals and 1 Charity Deal a Day at NoMoreRacks

For those who love shopping online one store that you should not pass is nomorerack.com. I just discovered this site last year and I am hook into it. They have designer products at a lesser cost than what you can find in the store. They are releasing 8 crazy deals and 1 charity deal in a day. This is only good for 24 hours and released every 12pm eastern time. Once these deals are out you need to act fast if you see one you like. Because the prices are really low, savvy shopper can snag it right away.

If you want to shop and snag their deals, you need to become a member. Membership is easy and free. You only have to enter a valid email address. Once on their site complete your account profile so when you find a great deal you can checkout right away without delay or you can complete your profile once you checkout the first time. Their site is secure so you don't have to worry about your info. They are testing their online security everyday so shopper is assured of its safety purchase. I like it too that they are Paypal verified. I usually use my paypal account to pay.

You may wonder where they get all these fabulous deals. Accordingly, all their products came from manufacturer closeouts, cancelled orders, overrun and overstocks, factories. You can find designer brand apparel, accessories, electronics, and many more. At nomorerack everything is 100% authentic at a very reasonable price. There are also free deals that you can score by having friends in your network. If you have more friends, you can get more free stuff, and more fun shopping for you as well.

As a bargain shopper Mommy, this is my kind of online store. I like bargains but of good quality products. Because of their amazing deals, nomorerack had been featured in different magazines, online websites and even in television. To name a few: The View on ABC, The Martha Stewart Show, People.com, USA Today, and many others. This is a legit online shop and gives good business. Check it out now and see what deals you can find.

Winter is Here!

[houses down the street from us]

I know winter has long been started but we just had our first snow experience for this season yesterday. The forecast says this rain-snow will last until Tuesday then comes back on Thursday. It has been snowing, on and off, since yesterday late afternoon. This morning when I woke up the kids were bugging me to go out and play. We did for a little bit after breakfast. I posted their pics here.

Right now the sun is kinda up but there is still snow showers. Good thing we were able to do our grocery shopping yesterday we don't need to go out today. Tomorrow is holiday, so even if it will snow hard we will be okay.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

No More Express Scripts for Walgreens

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walgreens for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

It was already announced by Walgreens management on their press release that the contract between Walgreens and Express Script has ended on the 31st of December. This means effective this month those patients with Express Scripts plan and uses Walgreens pharmacies to get their prescriptions can no longer do so. 

Negotiations were already done but to no avail. Express Scripts did not accept even if Walgreens offered to hold rates for a new contract flat and expressed not to increase rates. Because Tricare, the military insurance provider, uses Express Scripts program, Walgreens took an unprecedented step of guaranteeing that they will match the prices or beat the average costs per adjusted prescription of all pharmacies in the Tricare network just so the military personnel and their dependents will not be caught in the middle.

All effort by Walgreens to prevent disruption of services to the consumer rendered negative result, thus, they are tying their best to minimize the inconvenience by offering discounts on membership fees through Walgreens Prescription Savings Club. If you are going to enroll this month of January, you can avail of the discount in membership fee which is $10 for family with dependents 22 and younger and $5 for individuals.

For me, as much as possible, I want to use the services where I am comfortable with. I know million of patients don't want to be uprooted to where they get their prescriptions from, because by doing so means you have to establish again another relationship with a new pharmacist and you have to start afresh, record-wise, in that new pharmacy. So if you want to support Walgreens and receive updates about issues, information, and promotion, like Walgreens on Facebook and follow Walgreens on Twitter .

Visit Sponsor's Site

Our Budding Photographer

Now that our DD1 is almost 5-years-old she is starting to learn lots of things. When we are out and about she will request from us to use the camera and take pictures of anything she likes. Last year, my husband was amazed when she first learn how to use the camera and took the photo above. It's a good capture from a 4-1/2-years-old. In fairness she was able to capture all of us and somewhat balance with respect to the distance on the sides.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Walgreens Prescription Savings Club

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walgreens for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

One of my favorite pharmacy or drug store is Walgreens. I am one of the millions of Moms all over the US that frequented Walgreens not just for getting prescription but most especially to snag great deal of groceries using coupons on top of their register rewards program. They also provide a monthly savings booklet that I love to use.

I heard about the dispute between Walgreens and Express Scripts. Their contract is ending this past December 31 and negotiations were unsuccessful. My step-daughter is under Express Scripts and they sent to her her monthly medications from Walgreens. Now I realized that this will no longer happen and that my step-daughter will have to find a new pharmacy that she will be comfortable with to have her prescription. This is really an inconvenience as a costumer.

I like Walgreens because they have affordable medications. As a consumer I don't like the idea that we have to abide by what our plan dictate us to do. It should be the other way around. We should have the liberty to choose. If you want to find out more about this issue, you can check this Walgreens and Express Script press release.

The good thing now is that Walgreens have a program that makes the transition easy for the pharmacy users. They have the Walgreens Prescription Savings Club that will help costumers manage their prescriptions online. They are offering discount for those who wanted to enroll this month of January. A $10 for family membership and $5 for individual membership fees. Once a member, you can enjoy great discounts on 80,000 name-brand and generic medications. We all know that prescriptions are getting expensive but good thing there is a pharmacy like Walgreens that look out for all of us.

Support them now by liking Walgreens on Facebook and follow Walgreens on Twitter as well.

Visit Sponsor's Site

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tuesday Travels # 2


Since we got here in Washington State I have only traveled to California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Philippines. We are only 4 and a half hours or less to British Columbia, Canada, but we haven't gone there yet since our DD2 needs a passport. We really slack on getting hers. We are planning to get hers, hopefully soon. I am thinking by spring or summer time we can visit Canada already.

For my # 2 entry for TT, I will post pictures of places that are worth checking out if you happen to be in the Northwest, particularly Seattle. I first heard about Seattle when I saw the movie Sleepless in Seattle in 1993 with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. I was still in high school at that time. When I first set foot at the Seatac airport, the first thing I told my husband in a jokingly manner was "I will be sleepless too in Seattle."

Anyways, below are some places you can check out while in Seattle aside from the famous Space Needle, which I can't find the picture in my files, you can visit these places:

For more educational and leisure sightseeing, visit Seattle Aquarium.

Stroll at the Seattle Waterfront.

Have a grub at the old spaghetti factory.

These places in picture are just located at the waterfront. You can park your vehicle at a designated pay parking spaces and walk along the different shops and restos. You can also buy Seattle mementos and souvenirs at the pier as well. Though for the old spaghetti factory they have free parking spaces in front of their building.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Couponing in Every Shopping

You cannot only use coupons for groceries nowadays. Coupons are everywhere and you can use it for almost anything that you want to purchase. There are coupons for appliances, household items, as well as clothing and other apparel and accessories. In fact most department stores that sells clothes or other known clothing brand stores will send out coupons through email or postal mail just so you can save in doing business with them.

I love couponing and it is my goal starting this year to buy stuff with coupons. For others it may be a penny pinching but it is in a good way for me. In fact I have some american eagle outfitters coupons that can snag me a good deal for one of my fave casual clothing to wear. I will try to also do a year-round shopping for gifts for Christmas. If I see a good deal for an item that is great for gifts and I have coupon and discount for it, then it will be a good buy. This way I will be able to save money and less stress and expenses come gift-giving time.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tuesday Travels #1


This is my first time to join Tuesday Travels. My first entry will be Hawaii. I know if you talk Hawaii there are so many things to see and do. I will just share one particular place that I know tourist would not want to miss while in the majestic place of pristine beaches and beautiful views. Below are photos of the statue of Duke Kahanamoku, who is considered as the father of modern surfing.

If you happen to be on this particular place while in Hawaii, you can tell your family or friends to check out Google Earth that takes live feed of the place that can be viewed online.

The photos above were taken on our Hawaiian vacation back in 2009. Our DD1 was 2 years old then. It was her second and my third Hawaii vacation since I came here in the US. We hope to be there again.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Peace of Mind for this Brand New Year

Every time new year comes we tend to draw a list of things that we wanted to achieve. This is a good thing if we take the responsibility and be accountable of whatever goals we listed. The best thing to do I believe is make an attainable goals. Something that is very realistic and achievable.

This year, our family is very thankful for the blessings that we received the past year. The big responsibility that we embraced was owning our first home. In a big way, this teaches us how to become more mindful of our spending. And another thing that really changes us is how we look at security and making sure the property and us living in are covered.

Every night when I go to sleep I made sure everything is checked. Those that can cause harm, like fire is secured. Fireplaces turned off, if we light jar candles it should be turned off after use, appliances on the counter tops unplug, and so on and so forth. When we talked to our home insurance provider, we made sure that building and contents are covered. This is not being paranoid of things but just to become at peace and not to worry if anything happen.

My best friend that lives in Wales, UK told me she does the same. They have a detached, 2-storey house and sometimes her husband is not home especially at night because of work. She always check every rooms in the house before going to sleep. Not only doors and windows but also sockets and anything that can cause harm or fire. She insured everything so she will not worry if something will happen. Same with us, I am glad that when we signed for our mortgage, home insurance is a requirement. This made us worry-free while we sleep in our humble abode.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcoming 2012!!!

I am greeting all my family and friends that visit here at my blog a very prosperous, happy, and peaceful new year. It is a new year and I hope this year will be better than last year. I hope that we not only change or wait for another year to change. If we need to change for the better, we should do it and it should come from within us. I did not draft any resolution because I know I may not be able to follow it through and through. But I always make it a point that mistakes I made in the past should be lesson learned. We have to move forward and make our lives more meaningful everyday.

I wish we were able to celebrate the past holidays with family. Nevertheless, I am glad we have friends that we celebrated it with. Nothing can replace family but friends are blessings especially those that we considered family as well.

So how did you celebrate the new year? For us, me and the kids went to a friend's house and had dinner there. Hubby did not come with us because he was not feeling well. Before 9pm we went home to prepare for church. The whole family went to church and we welcomed the ringing in of the new year there. It was a great experience. My first time be in church here in the US to wait for midnight to strike for the new year. We had a great time and it was great to hear inspirational stories from the pastor on how we should live our life in accordance to God's plan and purpose.

CHEERS TO 2012!!!!!
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