Friday, October 31, 2008

Who's Calling You from Canada?

Good news for Canadians and people who were called from a Canadian number, you can now first find out who made the call by looking up the information through a canada phone number reverse directory lookup. This way, you can gauge better how important it is to return the call besides simply satisfying a natural curiosity.

L'Appartement Poll

I'm running a poll on my WAHM blog about where Husband and I should move our family to. Please give it a visit and vote. This post discusses the different considerations regarding the options we have . By the way, here's an anecdote about Option A's agent: She texted me that she'd be wearing "tiger sleeves and blue pants". Husband and I joked about what her clothes could possibly look like in the car. Anyway, when we got to the condo, we knew right away who she was supposed to be even if she actually had on a leopard-print sleeveless blouse.:)

I pretty much have a good idea where we'll end up staying, but I'd like to know how you would choose. Thanks. :)

Raise Rankings with Text Links

I know many WAHMs out there include their blogs as a means of generating income. It may not be enough to sustain a family (although I know some who are seriously making beaucoup bucks through blogging), but lots of little projects and small income sources come together to pool a substantial amount. How can one make a site more viable as a source of lucre? It’s about hits and traffic and page rankings and search engine rankings and just being plain popular. Ever heard of links? They are pretty powerful for something seemingly innocuous. You can considerably increase your ranking if you buy text links. It works in a way that you increase link popularity and you number of backlinks. Search engines rank your site based on the text links that point to your site. If you are serious about making money from your blog, buying text links is a good investment.

On the other hand, one way for WAHMs, or anybody for that matter, to generate revenue from their sites is to sell text links as well. To do this, you can sign up for an account at and they will find buyers for you. They pretty much do the work for you and you just wait for your monthly payment.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My WAHM Toils and Woes

I'm so thrilled that I now have two blogs eligible for paid posts. My WAHM blog has recently been approved, so hopefully, my WAHM posts would get a little more spread out here. Anyway, all my WAHM issues are over there, so if you're a WAHM, why not give it a visit? I'll appreciate the input.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Daybook Continued

The Simple Woman
For Today...

Outside my Window... early dusk... evening has started descending earlier
I am thinking... about matters related to moving, trying to work out all the small insignificant details
I am thankful for... the provision, the safekeeping, the conviction, etc.
From the kitchen... pasta
I am creating... more writing stuff, continuing old projects
I am going... to collect my checks that have been gathering dust at the cashier's for several months now
I am wearing... what a coincidence, the same old sundress I was wearing last time I did the daybook
I am reading... some of my old stories (and cringing), and the Bible, of course
I am hoping... to move with the least drama possible
I am hearing... Marguerite playing, people talking, the TV from my parents' room
Around the house... Marguerite's toys and general lived-in disarray
One of my favorite things... my pretty blue notebook where I write down lists (it has three "365 things to do this year" lists thus far). It was given to me by former colleagues, people I liked, but didn't get the chance to know better because they had to move away shortly after I'd joined the faculty
A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... finalize moving plans, take Marguerite to a costume thingy (hopefully not really Halloween related - fat chance), car registration, etc.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

Edited: It's a lovely miniature music room from a collection at a local museum. This isn't mine although I wish I had one too.:)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Thriving in These Troubled Times

This is a scary period in history, isn’t it? Let us not even go into all this being one of the signs of the times along with natural calamities, wars and rumors of wars, etc. It is always alarming when establishments that have always been considered to be rock-solid are brought down in one swift fell. Of course, it wasn’t really a sudden impact that caused the downfall of Wall Street, but the event did come as a shock to many. And the issue is not limited to Americans or persons with direct associations alone. It is, in fact, a global concern. The economic meltdown had such a strong and far-reaching impact that it is heartening to discover that some individuals and institutions are thriving in these troubled times.

The Economic Report, a show that scrutinizes the operations of different industries, various trends and other relevant issues that affect the society, is set to feature Heritage Web Solutions, a Utah-based website design company that is doing well in the midst of this 21st century financial crisis. Heritage Web Solutions is ranked in the top 1% of hosting companies.

The full press release follows:

“The Economic Report” show to feature Heritage Web Solutions

October 22, 2008, Deerfield Beach, FL - The producers of The Economic Report are pleased to announce that Heritage Web Solutions will be featured in an upcoming episode as part of the show’s Business and Technology series on The Power of the Internet Supporting the 21st Century Business Environment.

The internet has revolutionized the ways businesses market themselves. It is essential for businesses, both large and small, to have an effective web presence. A company’s website essentially serves as their electronic store front, communicating the company’s identity to website visitors.

Today, there are approximately 970 million internet users thus making internet marketing the most effective way to appeal to customers from around the world. Websites overcome the limitations between countries and continents thus making a company international. Having a website also means that a business is open and reachable at any time and allows for quick customer response time.

But, it isn’t as simple as just setting up a website. The only way for a company to be set apart from other online competition is unique website design. Businesses turn to internet technology companies for the development of a professional and search engine friendly, website.

Utah-based Heritage Web Solutions specializes in designing and hosting affordable websites for small and medium size businesses. In business since 2001, Heritage designs all websites to custom fit each company, giving each client a unique, original and authentic design. Customers of Heritage also have access to custom flash graphics, Ecommerce development and assistance, database creation and management, traffic driving resources and more.

“As a global community, we are evolving into a technology-based world,“ said Brad Stone, Managing Partner, Heritage Web Solutions. “Rarely we pay cash or write a check anymore. More of our purchases are made online, or at least we research online before making a purchasing decision. Our checking, savings and credit card accounts are maintained and paid for online. Our socializing has moved to FaceBook, YouTube and MySpace. Our communications are emailed, texted or Skyped. Breaking news can now be fed instantly via RSS feeds to our computers or cell phones instead of waiting for the six o’clock news. The Internet is very much a main part of human society today.”

For more information, please visit

I Broke My Social-Network-Abstaining Streak

I've recently signed up with myLot and I'm having fun so far. It's another way to earn a little on the sideline too. I really like joining discussions and putting in my two cents'. I'd gone off social networking sites in the past because it was too time consuming to maintain accounts/profiles so after Friendster (the first one I had) and MySpace, I stopped accepting invites. That means I don't have an account with Facebook, Tagged (is there a Tagged?), Hi5, et cetera. But I'm not very active with Friendster or MySpace either even if they're great for promoting whatnots. However, myLot is different because of the earning factor, so, in effect, it pays to be active.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Love at First Mouse Click

When I was in college, my friends and I used to read the personals part of the paper for kicks. Some of the ads were really funny and it was a harmless enough way to spend vacant periods between classes (they would’ve been spent more wisely if we studied, but whatever). While that time was already during the age of the internet, it wasn’t until a couple of years later that I began “meeting” people and developing friendships online (FYI, I went through a chat-addicted stage). Since I already had a boyfriend (who later became Husband), I was never interested in online dating, but I do know people who were able to forge good solid relationships with someone they’d met through online personals and are blissfully married now. I suppose the internet is as good a place as any to meet your perfect match.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Daybook Revived

The Simple Woman

For Today...

Outside my Window... dawn
I am thinking... about which place to move to, articles I have to write, parenting matters, a few plots to develop
I am thankful for... the infinite possibilities
From the kitchen... some muffins, tea in the pot
I am creating... three stories, articles for work, a patchwork quilt...
I am going... to organize my homeschool downloads
I am wearing... an old sundress
I am reading... the Bible and Dicey's Song
I am hoping... to find the best place to move my family into
I am hearing... hums and whirs of appliances
Around the house... yesterday's mess
One of my favorite things... realizing how God moved in particular episodes so that everything ended up where it should have
A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... just get work done, take care of the checking account, team praying, some more house hunting, finish at least one story, etc.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

As much as possible, I really prefer that wildlife be kept wild, but I do go to zoos every now and then.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Baby Shopping Suitable for Pregnant Feet

When we were shopping for Marguerite’s things, I was 8 months pregnant. We went to one department store and decided to get everything from there. At the end of the day, I was so tired, my feet hurt so bad (we had to buy a stool for me so I could sit while browsing through displays), and we ended up settling for whatever was in the store. The next time I shop for a baby, I’ll do it in the comfort of a padded computer chair.

We do have some nice things now, so it’s just a matter of finding other items that will go well with the ones we have now. This rocking chair, for instance, is absolutely adorable. Also, to keep the baby’s toys clean and organized, I’m not going for shelves again. A wooden toy chest would be preferable.

Note: I’m not pregnant; just thinking ahead.:)

Hassle-free Shopping for Boys

The Internet has really made practically everything accessible to us. Even shopping for gifts has become easier. For some reason, I always find it so hard to shop for males (no matter what age). I used to spend hours (and actually run out of time at that) just scouring malls for the right gift, but things that would obviously thrill usually cost an arm and a leg. Since I’m rather fond of my extremities, they’re usually out of the question. However, now that I’ve discovered the ease of shopping online, my poor feet have been saved; I get more choices in terms of products AND prices; and I don’t need to deal with the shopping mob.

Going back to shopping for boys, this wireless headset seems to be a safe gift for a young boy who spends hours on games. Now, personally, I’m really quite clueless about gadget-y things, but I do know that a young boy (or not so young) can subsist on junk food, water, and an Xbox 360 for days, so I’ll keep that in mind while doing my online shopping for the holidays.

Take Me Back to the Sixties (or Not)

I knew it all along (lol): I belong in my parents' generation. Well, part of me does anyway... What are my traits that would confirm this? Let's see... I love vintage things, classic rock, classic movies; I have a crush on a few baby boomers (Kenny Loggins for one); in the workplace, I often got to be closest to people my parents' age; if I must read romantic novels, it would have to be the wholesome kind from the sixties and seventies (loved Essie Summers, Betty Neels, Kate Starr...); I cannot stop saying "groovy" (lol)...

You Belong in the Baby Boomer Generation

You fit in best with people born between 1943 and 1960.

You are optimistic, rebellious, and even a little self centered.

You still believe that you will change the world.

You detest authority and rules. Deep down, you're a non conformist.

What Generation Do You Belong In?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Know Who's Calling or Texting You

I can’t begin to count the number of times I have received a text from somebody wanting to scam me (how I won millions, how my husband just got a new number that I should load credits to, how I should forward a certain message for good luck, et cetera). If I want to hound these individuals to ensure retribution (the legal kind) for the bother they’re causing or have caused, at least I can, for starters, look up their identity through Mobile Phone Reverse Lookup. Just type the number in the field provided and the system will generate information such as location, type of line, as well as which other details will be available to you after you register.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Second Blog Action Day Post - Random Thoughts on Poverty

Coming from a third world nation, poverty is something that I've been exposed to from the very start. While I may not have experienced it first hand (although this may well be a question of standards - the middle class here may be considered poor by progressive nations), I'm surrounded by it and its effects on the human being. I read somewhere that poverty breeds immorality, but can't this be true for the opposite as well?

I attended a school run by nuns. I don't think it was actually a convent school although there was a convent within the campus. There was a well-used phrase and it was a constant reply to the students' demands for fun things such as dances or fairs. It was "solidarity with the poor". I don't think the students really cared to plumb the depths of that phrase. There were outreach programs, but there were probably too few of the students who genuinely cared to contribute. Later on, I attended a university that had oblation as its main motto. I'm afraid to find out what percentage of the alumni has actually offered themselves in service for the people. Then again, there are individuals who inspire you with how they choose to put the education the people gave them to use.

Can poverty be completely eradicated? I hope so, but there's more to an individual's financial status than the national economy, right? However, if there's anything that we can do to work towards ending poverty, we should take part in it. If it can positively impact even just a few individuals' lives, it's far from being an exercise in futility, right? It's always better to contribute. Who knows what our collective efforts can attain?

Check out the following for inspiration:

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

My Family Tree Branches out to Various Nations

I’ve always been interested in history. It was one of my strongest subjects when I was still a student. The past really just fascinates me. In fact, I was in a perpetual high (the allergic kind, however) when I was working at the National Archives, surrounded by all those antique documents. Being so in love with the past, I’ve naturally always felt compelled to look up my own. I’m a “mutt”, so my family tree may not be so easy to trace (ancestors from Macau, Turkey, Spain, Portugal, etc.). I’ve gone online to do a free genealogy research and it yielded interesting results. Anyway, it’s like completing a puzzle, so if that’s your thing, give a visit.

Childhood Au Naturel, Part II

Here's the continuation of the outdoor activities list:

- lifting up rocks to see what lies beneath
- playing with bubbles
- skipping stones
- climbing trees
- watching clouds
- catching fireflies (to watch them in jars and release afterwards)
- making tents out of blankets
- setting up a picnic
- Geocaching
- Letterboxing
- collecting leaves, bark, and whatnots to do rubbings of when we get home
- making nature notebooks
- hunting up mushrooms

To be continued soon...

Find Out Your Blog's Vital Stats

Blogging is a rather curious thing. It’s like a business you invest in and as you progress, it’s fascinating to watch your blog develop from a faltering attempt to a more established site. Since I started earning from my blogs, I became aware of such things as ranking and hits. I initially didn’t know how to look up this information, but through User Website Reviews, I found out what I wanted to know. This site provides pertinent stats of sites from various countries as well as allows users to share their own reviews. It also features Top Websites, 500 of the most successful sites overall.

Childhood Au Naturel

One of the articles I've been reading over and over since Marguerite was a little baby is this. So, here are some ideas for outdoor activities we can do with our kids:

- bringing home rocks and leaves
- digging for worms
- searching for bugs
- comparing different kind of leaves
- building twig/stick "sculptures"
- building fairy houses
- planting flowers
- stick gathering
- following the trail of an animal
- making plaster casts of tracks
- drawing in journals
- treasure hunting for simple found objects (rocks, leaves, feathers, etc)
- making daisy chains
- making new homes for little creatures- bugs, worms, grasshoppers etc. (make sure to return them to their real homes)
- taking night hikes and star-gazing

More later!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Dealing with Bothersome Phone Calls

There was a time when my mother was compulsively buying from the home shopping network. She soon stopped when she realized that she was mostly buying junk. However, the damage done was irreversible. She had already furnished a whole legion of telemarketers our phone number. For years now, we’ve been getting multiple home shopping network-related calls each day. I don’t know about you, but I find answering calls a hassle, especially when I’m busy with my child. One way to deal with annoying phone calls is to report them. Technically, most of them are not doing anything illegal so a good venue to do this would be a community where people post numbers of callers that had bothered them in the past. Report Phone Numbers and let others know which numbers to look out for.

Preschoolers or Schoolers?

Okay, the term "preschooler"? I have no real issue with it except that it inspires my innards to balk. Maybe it's mostly because people have been asking me if I'm already sending Marguerite to school/preschool. Usually I just say "no" and explain that I'll be (or am) homeschooling her anyway. I guess my "slight" aversion to the term may also stem from old notions of preschooler being at least three years old (and that used to be a very young preschooler). During my time, kindergarten was preschool and children younger than that stayed home with their moms. I suppose my point is, aren't two-year-olds still, um, you know... babies? Honestly, I'd much rather refer to Marguerite as a toddler.

Signed Clingy Mom

Easy Access to Death Records

Having access to death records will spare you from the need to regularly check obituaries (unless you like doing so - some obituaries are downright poetic). allows you to verify if an old friend has already passed away. You only need to type in a name, preferably complete with middle initial, and a location and the site will generate a page that will tell you what you need to know.

Water Plus Vitamins Need Not Equal Vitamin Water

A long time ago, I posted a list of DIY projects I'd done alongside a list of DIY projects I was interested in doing. In the second list, I included vitamin water. My daughter and I have been besieged by an irritating cough for the past week. Poor Marguerite even has a hoarse voice which is alternately funny and worrying. Anyway, I thought of finally making some vitamin water because of our current malady. Since we're doing water therapy, why not pack the water with vitamins, right? Anyway, googling led me to this article. Since I pretty much bow to most of what Dr. Sears says, I forgot all about vitamin water and went back to plain water interspersed with my homemade expectorant of water-lemon-honey.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Identify Your Callers

Don’t you just hate it when the phone rings and rings while you’re right smack in the middle of doing something? When you let the answering machine pick up, instead of getting a message, you just get a hang-up. This actually happens pretty frequently. Before you know it, you’ve got a list of unidentified numbers. One way of finding out who have been calling you is by consulting a Caller Identifier. There, you'll find a list of comments on numbers that have been identified (most of them are telemarketers) and you can also leave a comment for numbers that have called you.

Reading with Tigers

This is the current wallpaper of my phone. It has been there for several months now. Marguerite was much younger and was reading her Billy Bear book to the tigers. Honestly? I'm thrilled to be in this stage, excited for the ones to come, and seriously missing those that have already gone by.

Actively Protect Your Children from Predators

One of the nightmares a mother can ever have involves her child being sexually violated. Those living in the US can be thankful for the passing of Megan’s Law. This can greatly help parents in their responsibility to be vigilant about their children’s safety. With technology and the internet being tapped to inform the people about sexual predators on the loose, we can check and recheck to make sure that there isn’t one in our neighborhood.

Reading Meme

I was sent this meme on MySpace. Since it's about books and reading, I have to do it.

Do you remember how you developed a love of reading?
No. Books have just always figured prominently in my life. I remember having to get new library cards several times in one school year because old ones got filled up. I've been collecting books forever.

What are some books you loved as a child?
children's mysteries, books about animals

What is your favorite genre?
mystery, most realistic fiction, children's, classic, essay/article compilations

Do you have a favorite novel?
Les Misérables

Where do you usually read?
I prefer to read in bed, in an armchair, but, really, anywhere is fine.

When do you usually read?
When I have time

Do you usually have more than one book you are reading at a time?
No, I finish one, then start on the next.

Do you read nonfiction in a different way or place than you read fiction?
not necessarily

Do you buy most of the books you read, or borrow them, or check them out of the library?
buy, check out of the lib (but mostly buy)

Do you keep most of the books you buy?
always, unless some mannerless person borrows one and never returns it

If you have children, what are some of the favorite books you have shared with them?
I have a two-year-old, so some simplified Beatrix Potters, Tasha Tudors, etc.

What are you reading now?
Sue Grafton

Do you keep a To Be Read list?

What’s next?
The Secrets of Pistoulet (if I can get a copy)

What books would you like to reread?
Newbery winners I have no personal copy of

Who are your favorite authors?
Victor Hugo, Jane Austen, Cynthia Voigt, Sue Grafton, Elizabeth Enright, Sharon Creech, Fay Weldon, lots more

Did this in a hurry. Will edit if something else occurs to me.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Perfect (Web)Host

The internet is a great marketing tool and most businesses are beginning to tap this resource to expand their business horizons. Because of this, Webhosting has become a pretty common consideration nowadays. Even personal bloggers are looking into earning from their hobby and when finances are involved, every element involved in the entire project is considered an investment. This is why we need to find something of real value. When it comes to webhosting, most of us probably need educating. We may drop names and even actually use one, but not really have anything more than a nodding acquaintance with its operation. How, then, will we know which one is truly value for money? There are sites such as that furnish lists of the top rated web hosting companies. From the pages of, for instance,we can learn which ones are the best. We can remain updated on trends and news, as well as reviews of these services. has an extensive directory of pertinent companies and pretty much everything else related to web hosting. The articles on the site are all very informative and helpful. Armed with what can be learned from this site, picking the right webhosting company will be a cinch.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Waiting upon the Lord

I haven't been very good about posting for this challenge. I find that I need some time to be able to translate feelings and thoughts I've just had into words with care. Anyway, I think I have some time before my daughter wakes up, so I'll discuss the chapters I'd just read. They're from the book of Isaiah, chapters 40 to 42.
I read the chapters online as my husband, who is almost a foot taller than myself ,deemed it practical to put my Bible on the top shelf of the bookcase. Anyway, something weird I just discovered about myself: I have a hard time understanding passages that are not in the New King James Version. The site's default version was NIV and you'd think this would be easier to understand, but I was well into the second verse when I realized that I was having difficulty registering what I was reading. I changed it to the New King James and presto! I was in adult reading level again.:)
When I first saw the verse for meditation on the site I referred to for devotion this morning (ch. 40, v. 31), I thought the waiting had something to do with our quest for a place of our own. We had found one that was satisfactory and I was a little blindsided by my own enthusiasm. Of course, upon prayer and reflection, it occurred to me that it was too early in the search to make a choice.
Anyway, upon reading the text, I realized that God meant to speak to me of something else, something that I've been pushing to the back of my mind because I find it emotionally draining to even think about. I'm talking about my sister's illness. It's a wonderful message. However, my daughter is up, so I'll have to continue this post later. In the meantime, just keep yourself joyful in the Lord. No matter what adversities may be plaguing you at the moment, think of it as an opportunity to gauge your faith. In our hour weakness, God's strength is more evident than ever. Ciao for now.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Terrific Two

Elle a deux ans.

We're finally done with Marguerite's 2nd year well-child checkup and so far, so good. Her weight is actually above average despite her slender built. Our pedi prescribed an iron supplement because the "eye thing" (I have no idea what to call it, but it's that part of the eye socket doctors check for iron deficiency) was a little pale. Of course, that was probably because she woke up at 3am to make sure that my eye-thing was even paler (I honestly should do the iron thing too). Her height has sort of plateaued, but is still in the high percentile (75th, I think - it used to be in the high 90s). We're doing bedtime now to regulate sleep hours. It's okay, Marguerite has not noticed the implementation of structure, so she's not fighting tooth and nail to give me a hard time (lol, notice how I'm kind of taking it personally - I'm not resenting it, but I'm worrying a lot about doing things right). She has had three small eczema spots on her right shoulder and although they don't bother her and are not growing in size, we're trying several things to get rid of them. I'm about to try tea tree oil and switching to soy milk. I'll also check if she'll become more mellow with less dairy, haha. If you have a natural remedy for eczema, please share it with me.
Anyway, Marguerite and I (she passed it on to me) have been down with a cough (not so bad, just a few barks during the day and sporadic fits during sleep) and as usual with what ever bug we get, we're doing water therapy. I'm not sure if we'll be doing the runny nose thing. I don't think I am. We'll see with Marguerite. Btw, lemon-water-honey really works. Hope it doesn't gross you out, but you can really feel the phlegm loosening for easier expulsion just like what cough syrup commercials illustrate.
Anyway, here's Marguerite the first Sunday after she turned two. I think some were taken by Husband and some were taken by my cousin Jaymee.

With Aunt Cheska; at the kids' play area; hobnobbing with the big kids; playing with Daddy

Sunday, October 5, 2008

100 Species Challenge (15-21)

This is my fifth 100 Species Challenge post (started by Sarah Sours). I have quite a few to feature this time since I'd been remiss about this meme for the past couple of weeks.

My growing list includes:
1. Shy grass
2. Lantana
3. Creeping fig
4. Ginger lily
5. Asian sword fern
6. Hibiscus
7. Bougainvillea
8. Chinese honeysuckle
9. Guava
10. Mistflower
11. Pine
12. Plumeria
13. Acaci
14. Christmas Palm

15. Kalanchoe

They're pretty common around here both as outdoor and indoor plants. The flowers come in different forms and colors. They're probably not native to the Philippines though. According to Wiki, they come from Europe. I don't think they're being used here for medicinal purposes, but it seems the plant may be used to treat infections and inflammations. However, it could also be poisonous to some animals.

16. Plumbago auriculata

I love the common name of this plant in the Philippines: Forget-me-nots. I know they're not like the forget-me-nots in other countries (these flowers are called blue plumbago/cape plumbago/cape leadwort elsewhere), but I still find the name fitting. They're very pretty to look at and many gardens here have them in boxes because they make a lovely picture spilling out from their containers.

I still have to do my research on the rest. If you know (or think you know :D) what the following are, please leave the name in the comments section. Anyway, I'll inquire at garden shops when I can and add the info here.

17. Potato vine or morning glory?

18. horsetail-like reed with red flowers

19. small yellow flower

20. pineapple palm?

21. some common garden space border/filler plant

How Much Boob Tube Time Do You Spend

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Pics Are All I Can Manage

Besieged by deadlines, I can only post pics for now. Here are some taken at a mini zoo.