Archives for July 2014

I’m on the Pursuit of Happiness

I'm on the Pursuit of Happiness

This is what was posted on one of the walls of Onelife Studio in Makati. I am really on the pursuit of happiness. I know what makes me happy and that is having loving relationships with others. The definition of loving in this statement is doing unto others what you would want to them to do unto you. I try to live by this golden rule each and every day. I don’t want to go all philosophical on you, but this ‘rule’ is pretty simple.

Onelife yoga studio

I intend to go to the Onelife Studio more often this coming month. I love the ambiance and I love that promote the place and have branded the place as something more than a fitness studio that offers yoga, pilates, belly dancing, and all other types of fitness classes, but as a home away from home. Every one here or rather every one who comes to the studio is treated like ‘family’. I have been there once to check out the place and I already felt the ‘love’.

And I plan to visit the place by joining Eats Right Batch 2. Eats Right are motivational meet-ups for women who plan to achieve their fitness and health goals. We are here to support you make your life healthier and happier.

EatsRight_poster2_FINAL

I’m excited for this run as our partner will be Onelife Studio and we have sessions on Restorative Yoga, Gentle Flow Yoga, Matwork Pilates and a Zumba class. You will be able to try all of these sessions and get that support group to finally achieve your health and fitness goals. To sign up, please fill out the form below.

As a discount, for those who key in MGEATSRIGHT2 in the coupon code field, you get to join for a discounted price of Php 1500 (for those who sign up within the month of July only).

Today was actually a bad day for me since I was trying to overcome a lot of things (i.e. Zeeka’s painful teething cry, a ton of deadlines that I have to meet, etc.). In trying times like these (whether it be work related or fitness related or relationship related concerns), sometimes you just need people that you can talk too, so for those who prioritize achieving good health this year, this is a great group to join!

The Pregnant Pinay and Feed Your Child Right Workshops

Every weekend, I’m always off to a an event where I need to be at. I thank the Lord for continuously blessing GPA Events Management Services (Manila Workshops) with very supportive brand partners, sponsors and attendees. I thank the Lord for a fabulous team who works hard to give everyone a workshop/event that they will learn from and remember. This coming July 19, we have two back-to-back workshops for parents and soon-to-be-parents.

Manila Workshops invites you to be part of these first ever The Pregnant Pinay workshop under the Parenting Pals Workshop Series. The topics that will be discussed by our two special guest speakers are:

• Proper Pregnancy Nutrition
• What to Expect during Pregnancy Check-Ups
• Breastfeeding Basics
• Essential Newborn Care

the pregnant pinay - poster

Our guest speakers for the workshop are Dr. Diana Liu-Sarmiento and Dr. Aurora Gloria Inguillo-Libadia.

Dr. Diana Liu-Sarmiento is a graduate of the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Medicine and Surgery. She completed her internship and residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the UP-PGH and proceeded with her fellowship in Trophoblastic Diseases at the same institution. Currently, she is a consultant at the Asian Hospital & Medical Center. Our speaker is also a writer for the Women’s Health and Wellness section of Yahoo! South East Asia. You may visit her website for helpful information about women’s health and pregnancy concerns as she has an online question-and-answer section called Magtanong Kay Doc. Her website is www.filipinamd.com.

Dr. Aurora Gloria Inguillo-Libadia is currently an attending pediatrician and neonatologist at the UP-PGH. She holds important positions in the UP-PGH such as being Co-Chair of the Breastfeeding Committee and the Head of the Human Milk Bank. She is also an associate professor in the Section of Newborn Medicine in the UP-PGH College of Medicine. She received her Observership trainings in Human Milk Bank Operations in Italy and in Neonatology in the United States. Various hospitals around Metro Manila and Cavite also have her as the head of their neonatal intensive care units (NICU’s). She is a board member of the Philippine Society of Newborn Medicine and is a part of the National Committee on Human Milk Banking of the Department of Health.

The Pregnant Pinay is on Saturday, July 19, 2014, from 8:30 AM to 12:00 NN at the Insular Life Multi-Purpose Hall, 12th Floor Insular Life Makati Building, Ayala Avenue corner Paseo de Roxas Street, Makati City.

This workshop is brought to you by Unilab and Insular Life. The other sponsors are StemCord Philippines, Inc., Jewel Tone, St. Patrick, bebebocas, Petiten and Mamachows.

Sign up now!

In the afternoon, Manila Workshops will be having a rerun of the Feed Your Child Right Workshop.

Feed Your Child Right (rerun) - poster

Our guest speaker is Miss Velvet Escario-Roxas, one of the country’s foremost breastfeeding experts and Deputy Executive Director of Arugaan – Support System for Women with Infants and Young Children. She is an international resource person and has trained more than 4,000 breastfeeding peer counsellors in more than 20 cities in the Philippines. Her wide experience also comes from her counselling work with many parents in grassroot communities and from her trainings and conferences both locally and abroad.

Topics which will be discussed by Miss Escario-Roxas are:
• Baby-led feeding
• Best starts in infant nutrition
• Feeding a picky eater
• What and How-to’s in feeding
• Avoiding feeding traps
• Culture-based diet

Feed Your Child Right (The Rerun) is on Saturday, July 19, 2014, from 1:00 PM to 5:30 PM at the Insular Life Multi-Purpose Hall, 12th Floor Insular Life Makati Building, Ayala Avenue corner Paseo de Roxas Street, Makati City.

Sign up now!

We hope to see you in these workshops! Please feel free to spread the word.

Protect your Baby from Radiation

If you don’t see something happen, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. I’ve been talking about the effects of pollution, stress, etc. to different people, since I’m an advocate of proper nutrition and another danger that we are exposed to (which I fail to tackle when talking to them) is radiation. Radiation exposure today is higher today because of the influx of gadgets due to advancements in technology. Look around you! Everyone you know has a mobile phone. Even children nowadays who are even below the age of 18 have cellphones. My daughter knows what a mobile phone is for and she’s barely 2!

In May 2011, The World Health Organization reclassified cell phone use to the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as lead, engine exhaust and chloroform, and the risks to this type of radiation are most pronounced during pregnancy and early childhood. I remember my mom telling me not to use or stay in front of the microwave and not to play with my iPad (I used to place it on top of my tummy, which was a convenient get-up-and-go “table”…lol) at the time I was pregnant. Now, I realize that it was because of radiation.

What is radiation?
Radiation is energy travelling through space. Studies have shown that electromagnetic radiation at the levels emitted by cell phones, computers, wireless towers, power lines and other devices have an impact on the way cells grow and repair. DNA replicates, sperm forms and even how brain cells function. For pregnant women, research has shown links between cell phone exposure during pregnancy and behavioral problems. Studies of rodents and rabbits have found exposure to pregnant animals results in offspring with fewer brain cells and more damage to their liver, eye and skin.

It’s really scary! I know that technology is still quite new and conclusions if radiation really affects humans or babies or pregnant ladies may even take years to produce valid, repetitive and substantial results, but I would rather be safe than sorry!

With this, for my preggy friends, I found this amazing product that will help reduce the effects of radiation or even totally eliminate it. It’s called Belly Armor!

Belly Armor now in the Philippines!

Belly Armor now in the Philippines!

2014-06-28 12.07.01

Belly Armor maternity apparel and accessories shield everyday radiation with up to 99.9% effectiveness. The fabric that they use is called RadiaShield Fabric, which is a highly conductive silver textile with the same shielding properties as a 1/4 inch thick sheet of aluminum and have been independently tested in FCC-certified labs. It’s really quite amazing.

Belly Armor for me! Can't wait to use this on my next pregnancy!

Belly Armor for me! Can’t wait to use this on my next pregnancy!

Belly Band_Nude

They have this Belly Band that you can wear underneath your dress or shirt or you can opt to purchase this really cute blanket!

Cute Belly Armor blanket!

Cute Belly Armor blanket!

_Metro

It’s impossible in this day and age to do away with gadgets that make life easier so the best that we can do is use technology safely. Here are ways to protect your family from radiation.

Doctor's Advice

Hope I enlightened you one way or the other about radiation and how to protect your baby from it. For more details on the Belly Armor products, please visit Belly Armor Philippines Facebook Page or email them at bellyarmore.ph@gmail.com or text them at 0917-8473739.

MotherBlogger @#://&%?! – How to Choose Bloggers that you can Work With

I have met a lot of brands who have been asking to work with bloggers (specifically mommy bloggers) in these past few months. These brands range from start up companies to really established ones. Some are even advertising and PR agencies. With the numerous bloggers around offering their services, how do you choose which bloggers to deal with?

Most of my friends with businesses ask me this question, so in one of my talks, I discussed the three things that I look at when endorsing blogger friends to brands who ask me. My talk was for Aspac Advertising Incitement Series 2014. I was invited to talk about insights on the WAHM community and the mommy blogging community. Check out the poster!

Motherblogger

I love love love this poster! This poster was made by the talented artists at ASPAC Advertising. The girl in the poster looks totally like me! Don’t you think so?

Anyway, in my presentation, I discussed three things that you should look at when choosing a blogger:

1. They should know themselves to know their PERSONAL BRAND

Know Yourself and Your Personal Brand

Know Yourself and Your Personal Brand

They say that you can’t separate your personal brand from the brand of your business or the brand of the company you work for. Case in point, when I was a banker, we were not allowed to be seen in casinos or in places where people gamble even if it was during your personal time. Why? Because as a banker, people trust you with their money. By seeing you in places like those, they might have that perception that you may be also ‘gambling’ their money (even if you do not have direct access to their funds). Not everyone will understand. We had that rule so that the image or the brand of the bank is protected.

The same is true with blogs. If you want to establish yourself as fitness blogger, then you yourself have to be a living embodiment of fitness. If you talk about being a breastfeeding advocate in your blog, then you yourself should have breastfed your babies. For Mommy Ginger, what I really wanted is for people to come to me when they have questions about being an entrepreneur or a mompreneur. My brand is really about being a SERIAL MOMPRENEUR. I really came up with this identity even before I set up this blog. It was after realizing that I had so many experiences (food industry, franchising, events coordination, advertising, retail, fashion, direct selling, freelancing, etc.) in business.

As a brand, look for these bloggers who know themselves and are clear on what they stand for. Try to see if your brand values are also in line with these bloggers’ values.

2. Look at the Blogger’s Market and the Content

Look at the Market and Content

Look at the Market and Content

Will what they want to write about attract a good number of people who will eventually be exposed to your products or services? Are they targeting a certain niche that you want to tap? Personally, ranks don’t matter to me. What I look at (even if the blogger is new in the industry) is the site’s potential for growth, if the content looks planned and well thought off and if the site looks professional and conceptualized well (down to the categories is seen and how social media buttons are placed).

For content, it’s important to see if these bloggers communicate messages clearly? Is the content something written from the heart or something lifted off from the press release that you sent? This is sometimes how I gauge good bloggers (those who are really sincere in knowing more about your brand versus those who just want free stuff and monetary compensation), when they really take time out to know the product or services that you offer. And also, it doesn’t have to be done through an event for them. A simple conversation over the phone or email or just having coffee with them would be an enough avenue to get to know these bloggers and explain your product.

Like any relationship, the first “meeting” (meeting meaning offline or online in this case) is crucial. That’s why PR sent that seems like an email blast to every blogger in the country does not work. Advertisers, ad agencies and PR outlets, just don’t send out press releases to bloggers and expect and increase in engagement with your brand. To be honest with you, I receive a dozen of press release emails in a week but I just delete them. The best way to use bloggers effectively is to develop a good business relationship with them and to really get to know them, especially those whom you see as a potential partner for your brand. It should be a win-win scenario for the bloggers that you want to partner with, too!

3. Lastly, is the blogger an influencer?

Is he/she an influencer?

Is he/she an influencer?

I have seen a lot of good bloggers who know themselves and are great at communicating, especially through writing, but lack following. I guess being an influencer is really tricky. It goes beyond influencing online, but even becoming an influencer even offline. What I have noticed about influencers is that they are passionate about what they believe in that they really live the out their personal brand and touch other people’s lives both online and offline.

This is hard to gauge especially if you don’t really know the bloggers that you work with or you commission. That’s why my suggestion is to really get to know these people so that you can gauge how influential they are.

So just to recap, here are the three things that you should look at when you are choosing bloggers that can work with you to build your brand.

The three elements should be present

The three elements should be present

With this, I leave your with some tweetables:

“Consistency is the name of the game. Your blog should be a representation of who you are. #momblogger #blogger -@mommyginj”

“Emotions should be felt through words used. Sincerity converts readers to followers. #momblogger #blogger -@mommyginj”

“Understand and live out your presonal brand. Communicate it through your blog. That will make you an influencer. #momblogger #blogger -@mommyginj”

 

Loom Band Craze and Workshop

I went to the new Century Mall near Avenue and there was a Toy Kingdom branch there. Upon entering, I thought there was something happening near the entrance since a lot of people where “huddling” over something. I tried to look over the shoulders of these people and I saw that they were going crazy over the kits and set of loom bands.

It’s amazing how something can spread so wildly here in the Philippines! For those who know me and read my blog, I am not one to go crazy over something crafty (since I like skill in that department — I admit!), but that fad has gotten me to create these…

Loom Band Bracelet by Mommy Ginger

Loom Band Bracelet by Mommy Ginger

Loom Band Bracelet by Mommy Ginger 2

Hey, please don’t judge! I know I’m one to say not to get so wrapped up on fads, but I just wanted to try it and I have to admit, it was fun! I stopped though after making around 10 bracelets (most of them were fishtails). I think these two were the complicated ones that I made (complicated by my standards).

I also overheard people at the bank once (I think one was a messenger of a company collecting checks) talk about loom bracelets! Wow! One was asking the other how to make one. Ang galing lang talaga! I’m speechless! Alot of people still want to learn how to make these bracelets.

So for those who want to learn, check this out!

Loom Band Workshop

Loom Band Workshop

Manila Workshops, together with Mothercare Philippines and @iamloomprincess, are inviting everyone, beginners and advanced loomers to come and party with us. It will be a fun afternoon of learning and sharing. Learn new loom bracelet designs and share your knowledge with your peers as well! In this workshop, you will learn how to make around 3-5 loom bracelet designs.

About Raissa Puno-Diaz (@iamloomprincess)

Raissa is the loomer behind @iamloomprincess (on Instagram). She was also the trainer during the last Loom Band Party for Memory Crafters held in May. This time around, she will be teaching a different set of loom bracelet designs for our audience.

About Mothercare

Mothercare is a specialist retailer of products for mothers-to-be, babies and children up to the age of eight. They offer a wide range of maternity and children’s clothing, furniture, home furnishings, bedding, feeding, bathing, travel equipment and toys. Mothercare Philippines is also the distributor of the following brands: Belly Bandit, Oshi Mat, Skip Hop, Stokke, Flexibath, Comfi, OKBaby and Inglesina.

The Loom Band Afternoon Party will be held on August 2, 2014 (Saturday), from 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM at Mothercare, The Podium Mall, Pasig City, Metro Manila.

Fees are as follows:
• Early Bird Rate: PHP 1,100 (paid by July 18, 2014)
• Regular Rate: PHP 1,300 (starting July 19, 2014)
• Group Rate: PHP 3,000 (group of 3 participants)

*Fee would include your own loom band kit, rubber bands, food and drinks!

If you want to join this workshop, you can sign up here: