Wednesday, December 10, 2014

PicMonkey Royale 30-Day Free Trial

If you are like me who likes sprucing up (read: adding colors, experimenting with fonts, throwing in some banners and graphics alike) pictures before adding them to my blog and with little to no working knowledge on premium photo editing tool/software, then PicMonkey could be your best friend too.


I have been a Royale member for about 2 years or so now and I have been enjoying the services from day 1. The site just keeps getting better and better every day. I love that you don't need to shell out as much money compared to buying complicated photo editing software. Editing is also super easy and the myriad of features makes it so much fun to use.

I've also used PicMonkey to create Valentines Day cards and I have started editing Christmas note cards as well. Sweet!


If you want to read more on why you need a Royale membership, read up on reasons through this link.

Happy holidays my dear readers! Cheers to a joyous and bountiful season! 


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Cath Kidston Spring/Summer 2015 Preview

I was lazily browsing through my mailbox until I saw the newest email from Cath Kidston. I was overjoyed to read the subject of the email: Look what's coming next. I immediately opened the email and found a preview of the Spring/Summer 2015 collection. Woot!!!


I was expecting something bright and floral but I saw something blue and with clouds illustration. I am not sure if I like it as much as I like the floral and dots designs. Good thing there are some products with floral and dot hearts design as well.




I wish there's a plimsoll with the dot hearts design though. I might need to scroll over the products in the website some more before I decide which ones to get or maybe start praying that these will all be eventually available at the Cath Kidston store here in the Philippines.

If you are still not done with your Christmas shopping, you may want to visit the Cath Kidston website and choose that perfect gift for your friends and family.

Click the picture below to start browsing:

Cath Kidston Christmas Collection
Happy Holidays!!! 


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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I Was Diagnosed With Gestational Diabetes

I got the pregnancy sugars and my level is way above the benchmark.

I had my oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) on my 24th week and the result is not encouraging at all. I was diagnosed to have gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). It is my first pregnancy and it seemed like I have ALL the conditions with fancy medical terms - hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and now gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). I have never had the most hospital trips in my life before compared to this year. I have never had the most number of needle pricks in my entire life either. I say I am generally healthy except for the occasional colds, cough and fever.

I was a little hesitant to undergo the test but decided to push through anyway. I kept on thinking that I am doing all these for the sake of our baby's health (not so much for myself to be honest). I was asked to fast for at least 8 hours before the first blood sample will be drawn from me. After the blood was drawn out, I was asked to drink the super sugary orange-flavored beverage within 5 minutes. It wasn't so bad, I kinda liked it but yes it was undeniably sweet. I was then asked to come back after an hour so the second blood sample can be drawn out.  After the second sample was drawn, I started to feel nauseous and really about to throw up. I was determined not to throw up because then I have to repeat the entire process. Good thing my husband came to the hospital with me. I leaned on his shoulders and closed my eyes and battled with my gag reflex. Next thing I know, it was time to take the third blood sample. After the sample was drawn out, I threw up all the beverage. It was still orange, same color like what I drank 2 hours ago. I quite had the inkling that my body never processed the beverage.

What is gestational diabetes mellitus? 

Gestational diabetes mellitus is a type of diabetes that some women develop during pregnancy. When you have diabetes, there is too much glucose (sugar) in your blood. GDM can also lead to health problems for the mother and the baby during and after pregnancy.

  • Before birth, the baby will likely grow bigger than usual/normal. This could make giving birth more difficult and would be more likely through caesarian delivery (C-section). 
  • The baby may be at risk for childhood obesity after birth. 
  • The mother may be at risk to develop Type 2 diabetes after pregnancy. 

After discussing my OGTT test results and all the possible effects during and after pregnancy with my endocrinologist, I was really scared. I'm deeply concerned of my daughter's health and well-being. I would not want her to develop diabetes and worst I don't want to lose her before she even sees the outside world. My doctor told me that there's a risk of the pregnancy to terminate even at 32 weeks. I know this is something serious and that I have to take this seriously.

I was asked to monitor my blood sugar level before breakfast, an hour after breakfast, an hour after lunch, an hour after dinner and before bedtime. I was also advised to see a dietitian who would help me create a meal plan to follow and then go back to the doctor again after a week.

I am now mid-week into testing my blood sugar and I don't understand why it fluctuates so much. I can't wait for the week to be over so I can go back to my doctor and have her interpret my results. I would not want to go on medication (insulin shots) but looks like I am leaning that way. For now, all I could do is to pray and pray and pray some more for my baby daughter's health.

Have you had experience with gestational diabetes while pregnant? 

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Sunday, December 7, 2014

When The Storm Is Over

As Metro Manila is bracing for the wrath of Super Typhoon Ruby (Hagupit), I am safely holed up inside  my room. I have watched quite a bit of news coverage in the central regions of the Philippines who endured the storm's brunt and I am relieved that the loss of property and loss of lives is much less compared to the destruction experienced during the onslaught of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) a little more than a year ago.

A few more landfalls were forecasted and I know everyone are still on their toes hoping and praying that this too shall pass. As of the moment, all we could do is to prepare and pray.


I hope that the more than 35 million citizens of the Philippines will not be disheartened but rather be encouraged that there's always a rainbow after the storm and that ample preparation can always save lives and property for that matter. Perfect reason why the quote above really resonates. 

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Baby Products For Le Petit Bébé - Mustela

A couple of weeks ago, I decided to start prepping for all the minute details of me giving birth - that of course includes deciding what products to purchase for the little one's skin care. There were a few products in my mind but decided to zero in on Mustela. I am sure Mustela is no stranger to you anymore because there are Mustela kiosks all around the big malls in the metro. In Makati alone, I have seen kiosks at Glorietta, SM Makati as well as Landmark.

Such that I am supposed to spend more time resting at home, I decided to inquire online if I can order and have the items shipped to me and I was delighted that Mustela offers free shipping if you order Php2500 worth of products. Great! I did all the inquiry and ordering via Facebook at the comfort of my room. Whoever assisted me on the other end of the line was very efficient and was able to handle my questions quite well. I am impressed!

There are currently four product ranges of Mustela:

Mustela Bébé 
- for normal skin 

Mustela Dermo-Pediatrics 
- for sensitive skin, atopic skin / eczema, cradle cap, nappy rash, irritated skin

Mustela 9 Months 
- for pregnant and breastfeeding moms 

Mustela Sun Protection
 - sunblock for normal or sensitive skin

I decided to pick up a few items to start off our little one's skin care regimen. Of course, I got a couple of items to ward off against stretch marks too.


Mustela, the expert on baby’s skin for 64 years, has launched an ambitious fundamental research program to advance knowledge about infants’ skin, from birth on. The Mustela researchers at Expanscience Laboratories have now discovered that a newborn’s skin contains a rich cellular resource: a reserve of stem cells at its highest potential at birth, yet remains extremely vulnerable during the first few years of life, while the cutaneous barrier is being built.  



All Mustela products, most especially the Mustela 9 Months range (for pregnant and breastfeeding moms), are tested non-teratogenic, meaning, when the products are applied on the skin, and the products and its ingredients are absorbed by the skin, to the blood vessels and is circulated around the body, there is absolutely NO RISK of malformation to the fetus when mommy is pregnant, or to the baby when mommy is breastfeeding.


If you want to try the different product ranges of Mustela, this month is the perfect time to by some I say. Mustela is available in Christmas Sets which you can purchase in their kiosks or online (they deliver nationwide) at discounted prices plus loads of free products in 3ml or 5ml packs that you can test. Of course, you also have the option to purchase full-size products.

Check out the sets below:

Christmas Set picture credit - Mustela Philippines

For any inquiries, please feel free to reach out to Mustela Philippines using any of the information below:

Mustela PH Website: www.mustela.ph 
Facebook: Mustela Philippines 
Hotline: 0917-8959988 
Email: mustelaphilippines@yahoo.com


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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Cath Kidston To Open In Manila

I guess I am one of the "modern vintage souls" that is super ecstatic for the opening of Cath Kidston in Manila tomorrow, December 5 (VIP) and on December 6 to the public. I cannot wait to raid the store and bask in a sea of florals and dots and all the pretty things the store has to offer.


It will be my ultimate wasteland of pretty and dainty knick knacks (while waiting for Ikea of course). I told my husband the other night that my favourite store will finally open and he immediately exclaimed "Ikea???" but he was dead wrong because my first love would always be florals and dots and everything nice from Cath Kidston.

I have long been envious of our Asian neighbours (Japan, Singapore, Thailand, etc) because they have had Cath Kidston in their shores for quite sometime now and Cath Kidston fanatics still has to order online and pay huge shipping and customs duties but I guess all is well that ends well, we can now all shop here in Manila. I am soooooo excited! I cannot wait to pimp the little one's corner with my Cath Kidston finds.

Cath Kidston will open it's first ever store in Manila at the Active Fun in Bonifacio Global City.  I am hoping to find a few stuff to buy tomorrow and I hope the store won't be that crowded. I am genuinely excited!!! While I have yet to set foot inside the store (hopefully on opening day), here are some of the things that is in my shopping list:


Let me know if you love Cath Kidston too and what products are you looking forward to buy by leaving a comment below. I would love to get to know my fellow "modern vintage souls" out there...

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Friday, November 28, 2014

Products I Love: My Pregnancy Essentials

One of my fears when I learned I was pregnant was having to deal with stretch marks in the latter part of my pregnancy. It is a shallow thing to consider and I now have mixed emotions about it. I am sort of happy to say that I don't have stretch marks in my growing tummy yet but surprisingly I am a little bit sad that I don't have some sort of a battle scar to show my kids in the future or just a reminder for myself that I have gone through the ups and downs of pregnancy and come out stronger.

Such that it was only stretch marks that I was most concerned about, I kind of ditched my skin care ritual altogether. I don't know, I just didn't feel like putting on anything on face not even moisturiser - big mistake! I also avoided putting on make-up consciously and with much gusto. I just wasn't in the mood for those.

Surprisingly, my skin cleared up - zero pimples! I think my skin is very thankful that it was able to rest from all the chemicals that I slather especially on my face. I started easing through introducing products backs to my cleansing and skin care regimen on my second trimester and I have the following to thank for. My skin is still glowing and yes still no stretch marks.

FOR MY FACE

1. I just use Dove Beauty Bar (8) for cleansing. I am loving the results. My skin feels soft and I have had no breakouts. I also observed that old pimple scars have diminished. I also exfoliate my face using the small face brush I got from The Body Shop. It's gentle bristles don't hurt and it provides just the right exfoliation to thoroughly cleanse my face.

2. After cleansing, I use Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate (4). I love the effect of the serum on my skin especially when I wake up in the morning. I rarely use it after my morning shower though because it feels a little icky sticky (maybe because I sweat too much).



FOR MY BODY (especially my tummy)

1. The Body Shop Cocoa Butter Moisturizing Stick (1) - is my super favourite out of all the products in this list. I really love the smell of cocoa butter and it is probably one of the smells that don't make me hurl. I love how it glides on my and that I no product goes to my hand when applying. My tummy feels so soft after application. It's just so sad that only one TBS branch I know carries it and when I went back yesterday, they ran out of supplies as well so the last stick I have may be the last stick that I will use until I give birth. I must find another product to replace it - fast! If you have any suggestions please let me know.

2. One of the cheapest stretch mark creams/lotions out in the market today is the It's Your Body Stretch Mark Cream (2) which I bought from Mothercare. I love the scent of the product and I love that it does not feel sticky when applied.

3. I use the Nivea Baby Moisturizing Lotion (7) all over my body. It's so gentle on the skin and it gets absorbed pretty fast. I also use it on my heels and I am loving the results. It is really moisturizing.

4. When I feel like I want to pamper myself a little bit more after shower, I spritz Benefit Bathina Scented Body Mist (5). It leaves a very delicate smell (peachy with a lingering smell of velvet plum.

5. My two shower essentials - The Body Shop Shea Body Scrub (3) and Aveeno Positively Nourishing Body Wash (6). I use the scrub twice or thrice every week and I use the body wash every time I shower.

6. When I need some extra rubs of tired muscles before bedtime, I use Mythos Firming Massage Oil (9). I love the scent of the combination of olive oil and essential oils of wild cypress, black pepper, rosemary and pergamont. I also like that it does not feel greasy after application.

If you have been pregnant or currently infanticipating, what other products that you loved using would you would recommend for me? Let me know by leaving a comment below... 


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