Friday, January 22, 2016

From a 4-Hour Commute to Less Than a Minute

Once upon a time, one of my favorite past times was daydreaming. I would daydream when I'm happy. I would daydream when I'm bored.

I would daydream in school when I think that my teacher is taking too long at a topic that I have already learned or mastered.

I used to daydream a lot after lunch, when my younger brother and I were supposed to be taking our naps. I found it hard to shut my wild imagination during those times. So, I would often indulge myself with daydreaming instead. Sometimes, I daydream with my eyes shut (so I won't get scolded). Sometimes, I would daydream with my eyes open (when my grandmother is no longer looking or when she has already fallen asleep).

When I was already working, I would usually daydream during my commute -- either on my way to work or on my way home.

Do you know what was one of my favorite scenes in my daydreams then?

Being an employer or business owner who had multiple income streams and had plenty of money for travel and shopping for the things that I like!

Today, I'm living out my daydreams in a small scale. I'm not yet a business tycoon but I have started my own businesses. My mentor Bo Sanchez calls them microbusinesses. I don't mind. They are businesses just the same.

I'm also happy to enjoy some freedom to go to places I want to visit without having to ask permission from a boss for a leave or a vacation or without having to wait until weekend or my day off.

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During our family vacation in Baguio after Christmas.

I may not have A LOT of money YET like what I have imagined in my daydreams; but I have more than enough for my family's needs and some of our wants. And all these without having to wake up very early to drag myself to endure a long commute to my workplace.

I used to have at least 2 LONG HOURS of commute to my workplace. I was living with my parents then in San Mateo, Rizal. I would first ride a UV Express or FX to Cubao. From Cubao, I would take the MRT to Ayala. If I miss our office shuttle from Makati to Sucat (which usually happened to me), I would take a cab to our head office in Sucat. It was a long, tiring and costly commute! I had to endure long lines to get a ride and after that endure the long ride to my destination.

That was just one way. Those 2 HOURS could stretch to 3 HOURS in the evening or at night because of traffic and difficulty to catch a ride home.

Now, you know why I had so much time to daydream then!

That's why I worked hard also on making my dream come true of one day leaving the rat race and having my own business, working my desired hours and doing the things that I love.

I loved my job then. But I didn't love everything about it and I didn't love that I had to endure those long commutes to and from work. That is also partly the reason why I would rather have an exhausting schedule of out-of-town or out-of-the-country training programs or workshops. When I need to run a workshop, I don't need to report to our main office unless the venue of the workshop is our head office. I would hire a cab from my residence and go straight to the airport. From there, I fly to my destination, take a cab or wait for the hotel service to bring me to my hotel. Sometimes, the travel time to the hotel or to another province by plane is shorter than my daily commute. I also liked that all my travel expenses were shouldered by my employer. But it was still tiring because there were a lot of training programs and workshops I needed to conduct nationwide. Losing my voice due to sore throat was one of my frequent ailments then.

These days, I can go to my work station in less than a minute! Why? Because I work from home and my home office is just a few steps away from my bedroom. I can even work in my bedroom if I want to. I don't do it anymore though. I have decided that my bedroom is mainly for rest.

Do you also want to work from the comforts of your own home office?

Are you currently an employee who also dreams of becoming an employer one day? Do you also suffer from long commute or travel time? Do you daydream too?

I have good news for you!

I'm holding a Mastermind Session on January 30 from 8:30 am to 10:30 am. We'll have breakfast together. My treat! I will be sharing ways on How You Can Skyrocket Your Transition From Employee to Employer. Would that interest you?

From Employee to Employer Mastermind FB ad

This Mastermind Session is worth at least P5,000. This is limited to a maximum of 10 participants only to ensure optimum interaction with me. You can ask me as many questions as our time together would permit. You can ask me to continue my story and learn from my experiences. The great news is you can attend it for FREE. 

Find out the details on how you can secure a FREE SEAT to this transformational Mastermind Session here.

I look forward to swapping stories with you! See you on January 30!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

God Always Makes a Way for His Words to Come True

At the start of the year, God told me that I can pursue again my dream of publishing at least one book this year. I was hesitant at first, knowing how busy my schedule is. But I claimed it and listed it in my Novena to God's Love again. (You may read about my blog post about dreams and how the Novena to God's Love has helped me make my dreams come true in the past years here.)

I'm not yet through planning for my dreams and goals this year. But I was starting to feel discouraged yesterday and the other day because there's simply a lot that a mom like me with three small children needs to do daily. Homeschooling two kids with different grade levels, breastfeeding a toddler who recetly turned one and is teething, caring for them daily, managing a household and an online business, maintaining blogs and trying to finish some backlogs from last year are what fill up my hours each day. yesterday and the other day, I began wondering, "How can I write and finish at least one book with this?" I felt that I was just too busy to squeeze in that dream and goal into my already full schedule. I was wondering how God can make a miracle out of my situation again.

Then, God answered me this morning during my prayer time with this:

"Just because you don't see a way 
doesn't mean I don't have a way." 

Wow! Isn't that great? God read my mind once more! And He answered me clearly and powerfully in a way I could not doubt His voice!

That's all that I needed to be encouraged and empowered to act on my dream and goal again. It was a very timely reminder to me to just keep putting one foot forward and make even baby steps of faith to move closer to my dream.

I excitedly shared about this on my Facebook account and said that I'm targetting to launch at least one book by Mother's Day this year.

Then, I followed up a potential artist who can do the illustrations for one of my children's stories. In minutes, I got the answer that I've been praying for! She confirmed that she will do the illustrations for my upcoming book Mommy Loves You Just the Same! I am beyond thrilled and happy! hahaha God just made a way for me again! I can't help but be amazed! Thank you so much, Lord! 

I'm so excited to see my story come alive in her illustrations! This storybook is special to me because I wrote it for my two older children while I was pregnant with my third child. We wwere preparing for the coming of our third baby and I wanted to make the two older boys especially my second child that I love them just the same even though they will have another brother.

Moreover, I wanted to continue my breastfeeding advocacy through this book. I think this is a perfect accompaniment or follow up to my book BREASTFEEDING: A Journey Worth Taking because I want to show in the illustrations that breastfeeding/tandem feeding has helped my sons in their transition to becoming big brothers. This is somethign that most books on becoming an older sibling did not show. Thus, I am so happy and I feel so blessed to have found an artist who is also a breastfeeding mom like me. I believe that she is the perfect artist for this story of mine.

Oh, before I forget, did I tell you that she's also expecting another child? Yes, she's pregnant now for her second child. Isn't God truly amazing? This makes her understand my feelings more when I wrote my story.

I believe that it was really God who ordained our meeting last year at an event where I was invited to speak. It was a gathering of breastfeeding moms and their families and our booths were situated beside each other. We got to talk to each other and I found out that she's interested to illustrate a book. And the rest is history, or should I say His story. ;)

That's all for now. I will update you about our book in the coming days and months and I hope you'll support us in this book project. In the meantime, please pray for both of us so that we'd be able to finish this book project amid our busy schedule as moms.   

Do you also have dreams that you are unsure if you can achieve them this year because of your current situation? Don't give up right away! Look to God for inspiration and strength! 

Friday, January 8, 2016

How to Play a Simple Sight Words Game

One of our learning goals for our second child this year is to help him read more sight words. The other day, I made a simple matching game for him using sight words. He and his older brother loved playing it. This encouraged me to continue using it yesterday but with a new set of sight words and a twist.

Let me share what we did. It's actually very simple so anyone can easily do what we did.

1. First, I typed a number of sight words using Word per page and printed them using bold and big fonts on a bond paper. I typed 4 sight words per page so my son can easily read the words even from afar. You can also print them on cardstock or board and laminate them to make them last longer. I was just experimenting. That's why I used bond paper but I think I will make sturdier versions later.

2. I cut the paper into strips to separate each sight word from the other. 

3. Then, I put some masking tape at the back of each strip of paper.

4. Our first game the other day was match the sight word with a body part. I initially wanted my 4-year-old to stick the strips of paper on his own body parts. But his older brother wanted to play with him so my eldest son volunteered to be part of the game. The boys had fun playing! My younger son enjoyed sticking strips of paper on his big brother. My eldest son had fun playing with his younger brother while helping him learn to read sight words about body parts. This is one of the reasons I love homeschooling. It provides many opportunities for family members to bond, have fun and learn at the same time.

5. The following day, I printed a new set of sight words. I did the same steps I mentioned above (steps 1 to 3). This time, these are sight words for what he usually sees in our home/house.

6. After putting masking tape on the strips of paper, we stuck them first on a wall. 

7. Before starting the matching game, I asked my 4-year-old son to spell and read each word first. Since he could not read them yet, I helped him by sounding out the letters and teaching him how to easily decode them and I read them for him too. After spelling and reading each one, I asked him to turn around before starting the matching game.

8. I asked him to get one strip of paper at random from the wall and stick it to the right object at home. All the sight words I printed yesterday pertained to objects except one. I included the word baby to make it more fun. ;) Mateo already knows how to read and spell the word BABY but I wanted to include it still because I saw how much he enjoyed having his older brother participate in the game. This time, I wanted him to enjoy it with his baby brother. :)

We will be playing with these sight words in the next days until my 4-year-old son masters them. Then, I'll add more sight words as we progress.

What do you think of this game? Will you try it with your child too? Let me know how it goes.