Three reasons why the SKY EVO Box will keep you glued to your TV screen

For many of us, the past year has made our home take center stage in our lives.

Instead of being just the place for rest and respite from our various occupations, it became the central venue for work and learning.

The large screen TV that used to take pride of place in our living rooms as our main source of entertainment may have been relegated to being just another screen by which we consume content.

If you look back with longing to the time when you can sit down in front of your TV to escape the stress and drudgery of daily life, SKY may just have what you need.

With the launch of its latest innovation, SKY Evo, it promises a host of enriching and larger than life viewing experiences that will make you rethink just what your TV is for.

SKY Evo is the newest Digibox, an equipment attached to your TV which decodes SKYcable’s digital signal, allowing you to access the channels in your cable TV plan. With this device, you also have the option to subscribe to additional channels and pay-per-view programs (take your pick from over 190 channels available), enabling you to personalize your cable TV service according to your family’s needs and preferences.

However, SKY Evo is so much more than that.

1. Built-in streaming apps expand your entertainment choices.

Watch the latest trending series on Amazon Prime Video or HBO Go. Learn from a new tutorial video on Youtube or listen to cool tunes on Spotify. You may also watch top local shows, iWantTFC Originals, Filipino blockbusters and classic movies on iWantTFC. Really, you get a wealth of entertainment options every time you turn on your TV.

2. Gaming apps extend the fun capabilities of your TV.

You can share the fun with the fam with over 5,000 apps and games available for download on Google Play.

3. A multitude of Google functionalities at your fingertips.

On top of the jam-packed entertainment offerings of SKY Evo, the device is also equipped with Google Assistant, a virtual assistant that can follow commands and answer questions with just a press of a button and speak through the remote control.

With Chromecast also built-in to SKY Evo, you can wirelessly cast your mobile device’s display onto your big screen TV.

With SKY Evo, getting glued to your TV is becoming a very attractive proposition, wouldn’t you think?

SKY Evo is best experienced with SKY Fiber Unli Broadband + HD Cable TV plans so you can enjoy fast and reliable connection with SKY Fiber and a plethora of content with SKYcable channels.

The SKY Evo with SKY Fiber Unli Broadband + HD Cable TV plans is available for a one-time installation fee of Php2,000. It is also available on SKYcable plans for a one-time installation fee of Php2,500.

Know more about SKY Evo and its bundle offerings here.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Mindfulness Coach Vince Dizon asks the important questions that lead to clarity

When you hear the word “mindfulness,” what usually comes to mind?

For me, it was usually a picture of someone effortlessly and serenely engaged in a yoga pose, one with the universe.

If that seemed too highfalutin for you, it certainly seemed so to me.

That is, until circumstances in my life forced me to look deeper into the concept.

I manage several roles in my life: as a wife, mother, daughter or sister to my family members; as a colleague, a subordinate or an immediate superior to my workmates; as a blogger or co-hobbyist to other people and many more.

I don’t compartmentalize my roles either. From time to time, tasks and responsibilities of one would impinge on those of the others. For example, I used to feel that my responsibilities as a mother precluded me from going for other career opportunities. On the other hand, the knowledge or skills of one role would inform the others, such as when my learnings from my blogging life added some important insights to my marketing job.

Vince Dizon

Still, by juggling multiple roles from day to day, I sometimes wonder if I’m doing enough or even if I’m doing well enough in any of these.

The need for mindfulness

For many of us who used to operate in the so-called rat race, we were conditioned to be single-minded. We were given a goal and we are expected to give our all in order to attain it. We always trained our eyes to the future and worked towards it.

Mindfulness, on the other hand, teaches us to be fully present, aware of where we are, how we are feeling. We purposively pay attention to the present moment, without judgement, in order to gain self-understanding and wisdom. Through this state, we can avoid being too reactive or overwhelmed by the things that happen around us. We can also avoid being a slave to our emotions or moods – to step outside of and investigate them – when our situation calls for us to get past them.

A guide to mindfulness

While we all have it in us to be mindful, we may get too inundated with stimuli in our daily life, especially in our career, to be able to practice mindfulness effectively.

A mindfulness coach is someone who will help us be mindful of our presence and effect to others, so that we can relate better to others and take appropriate leadership, whether of our subordinates, peers or even our bosses.

A mindfulness coach also acts as a thinking partner, one who helps us work out causes and effects to help us avoid making rash decisions.

A mindfulness coach will not prescribe the “right” courses of action, nor give generic advice on what you need to do. Instead, a mindfulness coach facilitates a meaningful conversation, one that can expand our awareness of ourselves and our impact to others so we can work out for ourselves how to sustainably navigate our way to what we want to achieve.

A mindfulness coach can also act as a sounding board for ideas and thoughts to help spur self-reflection or broaden our thinking to overcome limiting beliefs or blindspots.

Meet Mindfulness Coach Vince Dizon

I recently started on my own journey towards mindfulness with my friend and former coworker Vince Dizon.

Vince Dizon

In the years since he left the company, he has acquired a prestigious certification from the International Coach Federation and embarked on a new career to help executives and corporate workers sustainably optimize their performance as a Career Performance Coach.

Vince Dizon

Recognizing that the ongoing pandemic has brought numerous changes to the work environment that many people still struggle through, he has made his coaching services more accessible by conducting them over Zoom.

The start of my mindfulness journey

I’ll admit: it took me some time to decide to open up to Vince (or to anyone!) about my issues. While I do tend to share funny stories and interesting anecdotes about my life in my blog posts and on social media, my inner self where my grand ambitions, insecurities and vulnerabilities reside is usually well-hidden.

Vince Dizon

However, with my resolve this year to also nurture my mental health after all the stresses of the past year, I deemed it necessary to seek the help I need.

My first session with Vince was basically an hour spent examining my thoughts and biases about my life, relationships and work which hinder me from appreciating and claiming my achievements. It encouraged me to not look outside of myself and my immediate circle for validation such as lofty work titles, large salaries or grand recognition. Instead, his questions guided me towards greater clarity and giving value to what is already intrinsic within me: my good intentions, my knowledge and skills I bring to my work, my talents that I use to help the people I encounter and my love for my family.

Vince Dizon

It also helped me acknowledge and claim the things that deep down I know I have a right to: self-love and contentment – that I am enough and I do enough.

Start on your own mindfulness journey

My path towards mindfulness may not be the same as yours.

In fact, fellow bloggers Sarah and Ivan also had mindfulness coaching sessions with Vince but had different takeaways.

This is because we all have different needs, wants and situations, as well as different ways forward in our life journeys.

What’s important is to find the way that works for you.

With a mindfulness coach like Vince, this becomes a lot easier.

Vince Dizon

Vince has made his services more accessible, not just by conducting them online (eliminating the need for traveling for face-to-face meetups), but also by packaging them to be more affordable and hardworking in favor of his clients.

A one-hour session costs Php2,000 but a three-month engagement consisting of six sessions (one call every two weeks) is priced at Php10,000. This arrangement is ideal for tracking and building on the realizations from the first mindfulness coaching session.

To learn more or to book your own sessions with Vince, you may send him a message via his Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn pages.

Vince also conducts mindfulness Yin Yoga classes. Check out his videos on Youtube.

What would you want to accomplish with your own mindfulness coaching sessions?

Disclosure: My first session was conducted for free to facilitate this feature article.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa for quick relief from sore throat and coughing

Momshies, there are times when we really need to speak out.

Whether it’s when we’re demonstrating our competency at work, teaching our children for school or for life, or when we assert ourselves to get what we need for our family, we need to make sure that we make ourselves heard and we get our message across.

Sometimes, though, an itchy throat gets in the way.

Imagine: just when you are about to make your pitch in an online meeting, you’re suddenly overcome with a fit of coughing or a hoarse voice. Not only will these stop you from speaking up but they are also especially alarming to hear nowadays with the ongoing panic over the pandemic, right?

Well here’s a remedy that singers and voice talents swear by: Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

It is a traditional Chinese herbal medicine that helps relieve throat, cough and voice problems.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

This heritage brand has been around for quite some time. As legend has it, the mother of Yang Chin, provincial commander in the Qing dynasty (more than 400 years ago) suffered from a chronic cough. She was cured by a remedy concocted by physician Dr. Ip Tin-See out of fifteen herbs. The remedy proved so effective that the commander built a factory to mass produce it. Through the years, generations have grown to trust only Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

It even carries this touching history in its very name: “Nin Jiom” which translates to “in memory of my mother,” and “Pei Pa Koa” which means “loquat syrup.” If you also look carefully at its logo, you will see that it depicts a son dutifully serving his elderly mother.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

Today’s modern formulation contains sixteen powerful herbs and honey which all work together to expel phlegm, soothe the throat, relieve coughing and hoarseness. Its core cough relief ingredient, Chuan Bei, is especially harvested in sustainable and pollution-free conditions from its own cultivated farm in Tibet.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

When taken, its thick and cool syrup goes smoothly down your throat. You will be able to feel its soothing effects almost instantly.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa may be taken three times a day or as prescribed by a doctor. Adults (over 12 years old) may take one tablespoon (15ml), kids from seven to twelve years old may take 2/3 tablespoon (10ml) while kids below seven years old may take 1/3 tablespoon (5ml) per dose. You can also dilute it in warm water and take it for throat and voice maintenance.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

So, momshies, if a sore or itchy throat, or an irritating cough hinders you from saying your piece, you know what to do.

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa is available in three sizes – 300ml, 150ml and 75ml. You can buy it at leading drugstores as well as at Shopee and Lazada.

For more information, follow Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa on Facebook.

Disclosure: A product sample was provided to facilitate this feature article

The Jelly List: Thoughtful Gifts for Valentine’s Day

The day of hearts is fast approaching. Despite the pandemic, Valentine’s Day remains one of the most anticipated holidays of the year.

The question is: how can sweethearts in the metro celebrate the day of romance if they can’t go out to wine and dine?

Through thoughtful gift-giving, of course!

Nothing says “I love you” like a well-considered present, one that gave thought to one’s sweetheart’s interests and passions.

Check out this list and let me know which suggestion suits your beloved best:

For the hopeless romantic: Preserved Flower Arrangement from Stories & Blossoms

Flowers are almost synonymous with Valentine’s Day. A bouquet of fresh-cut blooms would set a romantic heart racing, but nowadays, preserved flowers may be the way to go. They last longer than fresh flowers and are pretty low maintenance. (Somewhat like the ideal partner, eh?)

Tell your love story with a tasteful preserved flower arrangement from Stories & Blossoms. Through the creative combinations of colors, shapes and textures of various preserved blooms, you can express quite a lot to your loved one and evoke romantic memories. You can even have a unique arrangement inspired by your loved one favorite book, movie or TV series, just like the store’s Sex & the City Collection.

Stories & Blossoms’ SATC Collection

Stories & Blossoms’ SATC Collection

Stories & Blossoms’ SATC Collection

Stories & Blossoms’ SATC Collection

Stories & Blossoms’ preserved flower arrangements start at Php299 with more ornate signature creations starting at Php2,500. You can also have an arrangement custom-made according to your preferred colors and flowers as well as your budget. Shop online at Stories & Blossoms’ website or call +63 967 5099050.

Read more on Stories & Blossoms here.

Photo credit: Stories & Blossoms

For the health-conscious: Superfood Box Set from Goodness MNL

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it is the value of our health. Central to any attempt at a healthy lifestyle is, of course, food.

If you want to start on a journey towards healthy living, incorporating superfood into your diet would be a good start. These nutrient-rich ingredients help in promoting health and warding off diseases.

Get a Goodness MNL box set to enjoy a sampling of five different types of superfood. Choose five from the nine superfood types available – organic chia seeds, organic golden flax seeds, organic sweet basil seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, Himalayan fine salt, Himalayan rock salt, organic cocosugar, organic adlai grits and cocosugar cacao nibs – and have them delivered to you in a beautifully curated box.

Goodness MNL

Goodness MNL

Goodness MNL’s box set is available for Php330 (with 30ml test tube bottles) and Php400 (with 40ml test tube bottles). Order your box via Facebook or Instagram.

Read more about Goodness MNL here.

For the stressed: Coloring Books from Shopping on the Side

Engaging in a creative activity such as coloring books can help calm a busy mind, facilitate a more restful slumber and can even unleash one’s creativity in other pursuits.

If you think your special someone can benefit from these, then gift them with imported adult coloring books that will soothe the mind while getting those creative juices flowing.

Coloring Books - Shopping on the Side (https://shopee.ph/shoppingontheside?v=5ef&smtt=0.0.5)

Coloring Books - Shopping on the Side (https://shopee.ph/shoppingontheside?smtt=0.0.9)

Fortunately, getting those coloring books won’t require such a huge effort. Simply order from Shopping on the Side’s store on Shopee and take your pick from its wide variety of books from meditative mandala patterns, whimsical drawings of fairies, intricate illustrations of travel destinations to humorous comic strips.

Read more about Shopping on the Side here.

For the eco warrior: Bamboo Mug and Tumbler from The Bamboo Company

If protecting the environment is one of your SO’s priorities, you would want to support this advocacy through gifts that promote zero-waste, sustainability or the elimination of single use plastics.

Reusable implements for drinking or eating to-go food would go a long way towards keeping the environment safe for future generations.

The Bamboo Company

The Bamboo Company

You can purchase this Breakfast Buddy (Mug and Coffee Tumbler Set) from The Bamboo Company’s online store (now on sale for Php1,699 from Php2,040). It’s perfect for that leisurely morning coffee that you two can share on a chilly Valentine’s Day morning.

For the homebound imbiber: Cocktails-to-Go from After Hours Bar

If your special someone misses the experience of going out to a bar for a drink, then bring the bar home!

While the pandemic has had a huge impact on the restaurant and hospitality industry, bars were hit the hardest. Fortunately, some have pivoted their business to include ready-made cocktails available for delivery, such as After Hours Bar.

After Hours, Tomas Morato

After Hours Bar Bottled Cocktails

You can get 500 ml bottles of After Hours’ signature cocktails such as Sangria Spritzer (Php825), Punch Drunk Love (Php975), Gin Basil Smash (Php975), Muscovado Old Fashioned (Php1,300) and Negroni (Php1,500) delivered to your home just by ordering through its online store.

Read more about After Hours Bar here.

For the sweet tooth: Strawberry Shortcake from Inang Charing

If your beloved adores desserts and sweets, then express your love with a delectable Strawberry Shortcake!

A gorgeous confection made with delicate vanilla cake, layered with thick and fluffy whipped cream and topped with slices of fresh and succulent strawberries, this will surely excite the senses!

Inang Charing Strawberry Shortcake

Inang Charing Strawberry Shortcake

You can get this delightful creation from Inang Charing Cakes and Pastries, a Pasig-based online baker. An eight-inch round cake is available for Php1,135 (for pickup only due to the delicateness of the cake) but an 8-in x 8-in square pan is also available for Php835 (more suitable for delivery services).

Place your orders via Inang Charing’s Facebook and Instagram pages with a two-day lead time.

Read more about Inang Charing Cakes and Pastries here and here.

So there you have it: my list for thoughtful gift ideas for your special someone this Valentine’s Day.

Which one do you think suits your beloved the most?

Check out my other adventures compiled into Jelly Lists:

Derma Science Hand Gel may be your new hygiene essential

With threat of COVID-19 still looming over us, it is still important to do all we possibly can to keep the virus at bay.

Foremost among these measures is to always keep our hands clean.

Hand-washing with soap and water is still the best way to achieve this (with thorough rubbing and rinsing for at least twenty seconds), but what do we do when these are not immediately available?

According to dermatologist Dr. Doris Velasco, using hand sanitizer gels is next best thing to hand-washing.

Derma Science Hand Gel

Citing the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines, Dr. Velasco shares that hand sanitizers should have at least 60% alcohol content to be able to break down the SARS COV-2 lipid protective barrier. However, rubbing high concentrations of alcohol on your skin may cause skin dryness and irritation because it disrupts the protective layer of oil on your skin.

This is the reason hand sanitizer gels were created: they contain moisturizers to counter-act skin dryness caused by alcohol.

They are also quite handy and easier to carry. You can pop a small bottle in your bag to bring with you wherever you go.

Derma Science Hand Gel

When applied, they also slow the evaporation of alcohol on your hands, ensuring that it has time to work against the microbes on your skin.

Dr. Velasco further advises that one to two drops of hand sanitizer gel are enough to use to sanitize your hands. Just make sure that the whole hand area from palm to fingers are covered and rubbed well. Once properly applied, let the hand sanitizer gel dry completely on its own, then you’re good to go.

Derma Science Hand Gel

Luckily for us, there’s a new hand sanitizer gel that’s just been introduced to the market to level up the entire category: Derma Science Hand Gel.

Derma Science Hand Gel

According to Pacific Healthcare Philippines Product Manager, Romer Estrada, Derma Science Hand Gel addresses our need for effective hand cleasing without sacrificing the moisturizing of our skin.

It has two variants:

  • A 100ml bottle (priced at Php110) which is infused with sakura extract, has a mildly fragrant smell and is perfect for personal use.
  • A 490ml bottle (priced at Php320) which is infused with German chamomile extract, is scent-free and is perfect for general use.

Both infusions are proven effective in helping to retain skin moisture and repair natural skin barriers. They also have anti-aging properties due to their wide array of anti-oxidants.

Derma Science Hand Gel

Derma Hand Science Hand Gel is also paraben-free. Parabens are preservative substances that not only produces dry skin, they can disrupt hormone function in women leading to increased risk of breast cancer and reproductive toxicity.

Derma Science Hand Gel

Derma Science Hand Gel also has 70% alcohol content but no colorants and is quick drying, letting you effectively cleanse your hands without that sticky feeling.

Want your own bottle (or bottles!) of Derma Science Hand Gel? You can get them at Shopee, Lazada or at goodnessandgrains.com!

Get started on your wellness journey with Sunlife’s GoWell Studio

We’re halfway through the first month of the year and if you haven’t gotten around to making good on your New Year’s resolutions to live healthy, here’s a good place to start.

GoWell Studio is an on-demand holistic wellness platform launched by Sun Life Philippines as part  of its commitment to help Filipinos live healthier lives.

GoWell Studio

In this site, you can find top-notch content such as follow-along exercise programs, guided meditation sessions, various masterclasses, short courses, and healthcare awareness and education. These will be led by some of the country’s leading fitness coaches, doctors, allied health professionals, and educators.

GoWell Studio

Got a question for a specialist?  Using the platform, you can look up from a directory various experts from whom you can seek personalized health and wellness advice. The line-up includes Ginastica Natural Philippines Founder Mark Cupino; Bukodon, Yin and Vinyasa Yoga Instructor Anna Manalastas; Myotherapist and Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner Filbert Tan; Pilates Coach and Animal Flow Instructor Trisha Buhat; Founder of Awake.ph and Modern-day Kriya Yogi Neil Salang; Sound Healer Coach Yeyette San Luis; World Kettlebell Club Strength and Conditioning Coach Tim Ayson; Alab Pilipinas, UP men’s basketball, and Petrogazz Angels Volleyball team’s Strength and Conditioning Coach Chappy Callanta; and Sports Performance Specialist and F45 Functional Strength Coach Andro Amador, among others.

Access to the GoWell Studio may be enjoyed exclusively by Sun Fit and Well, Sun Senior Care, and Sun Cancer Care policyholders simply by registering in the GoWell website (gowell.com.ph).

GoWell Studio

“We take pride in GoWell Studio’s team of highly credible experts and carefully curated content, all of which a member can access in the comforts of his own home,” Sun Life Chief Marketing and Client Experience Officer Gilbert Simpao said. “Taking care of ourselves remains crucial now that we are still in the middle of the pandemic. We invite everyone to become members of GoWell, Sun Life’s community that promotes holistic wellness through a fit and active lifestyle, healthy eating, and living a healthier life.”

Those who wish to know more about Sun Life’s health and accident insurance products are encouraged to consult a Sun Life advisor or visit sunlife.com.ph. For more about Sun Life’s health and wellness initiatives, visit gowell.com.ph and follow @SunLifePH and @GoWellPH on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Details provided in a recent press release.

Tell your tales with Stories and Blossoms’ preserved flower arrangements

Have you ever heard the phrase “say it with flowers?”

This saying is attributed to Boston adman Major Patrick O’Keefe who came up with the slogan during a discussion with former President of the Society of American Florists. While brainstorming on possible slogans for the organization, Penn was said to have remarked “There is nothing you can’t say with flowers – when you send flowers, it says everything,” to which O’Keefe exclaimed “That’s it!”

Stories & Blossoms

For ages, meaning have been attributed to flowers. From the Ottoman Empire’s obsession with tulips to the Victorian era’s interest in floriography, up to the present day’s penchant for using blossoms in home decor, flowers have been used to send messages to their recipients.

Stories & Blossoms

Imagine what you can say with preserved flowers instead. If you haven’t yet considered preserved flowers to beautify your home or to give as gifts, here are ways they trump fresh-cut flowers.

1. They last longer.

The thing with flowers is they tend not to last that long. While fresh-cut flowers can generally last for a week or two, preserved flowers can stay around for up to three years. You won’t have to worry about your home accent or present wilting away too soon.

Stories & Blossoms

2. They cost less.

Fresh cut flower arrangements for delivery usually start at Php700 but preserved flower arrangements can cost as low as half this amount.

Stories & Blossoms

3. They require little maintenance.

Since the preserved flowers are dried, they do not require water to maintain them. Given our climate, you would just need to keep them from dust and moisture so you can enjoy them for a long time.

Stories & Blossoms

4. They don’t trigger pollen-based allergies.

If you’ve always loved the beauty of floral arrangements but get a case of the sniffles every time you’re near them, preserved flowers is the solution to your problem. Preserved flowers no longer have pollen so those who suffer from allergies to this substance can enjoy them safely.

More and more, it seems that preserved flowers are well-suited to today’s minimalist trends in gift-giving and home decor.

Stories & Blossoms

Online flower shop Stories & Blossoms captures not just the needs of times but also the stories behind every emotion, celebration and milestone that call for its tasteful preserved flower arrangements.

Through the artful combinations of colors, textures and sizes of different blooms, it helps evoke feelings, memories and thoughts.

Take this Stories & Blossoms creation – called “Little Black Dress” – a 26-inch tall arrangement that incorporates the Pantone colors of 2021 – Illuminating Yellow and Ultimate Grey – as well as my favorite color, Black. This imbued a combined sense of brightness, serenity and hope to my home. It also became an eye-catching and elegant centerpiece for my dining table.

Stories & Blossoms

You too can capture and tell your tales with preserved flowers. Just shop online at Stories & Blossoms’ website. Arrangements are priced starting at Php299. To know more about its newest arrangement creations and offers, like and follow Stories & Blossoms on Facebook or call +63 967 5099050.

Disclosure: A product sample was provided to facilitate this feature article.

Quick pain relief with White Flower

I’m no snowflake.

In fact, I pride myself on being a low-maintenance kind of girl, a koboy, in fact.

But sometimes, there are those aches and pains that stop me from having a happy and productive day.

Blame it on today’s busy and overwhelming pace of living, or, yes, my age, but lately, I can succumb to those twinges and sniffles that get in the way of what I have set out to do.

I guess I’m not as tough as I thought I was.

Well, some wise ladies have clued me in on their tried-and-tested home remedy: White Flower Embrocation.

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation

A nifty bottle of this liniment provides a quick dose of much-needed relief for those who get knocked-down by life’s little discomforts.

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation

Yes, being a legacy brand, White Flower has been around for quite a while. That’s just a testament to its efficacy.

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation

Just by performing three basic steps – ipatak (apply a few drops to the palms and rub together), langhapin (breathe in the soothing vapor) and ihagod (massage onto the aching area) – generations have benefited from its pain-fighting qualities against ailments such as:

Headaches. Don’t you just hate it when your head begins to throb when you get tired or stressed? There are times that call for you powering through your headache to deliver your work task or fulfill responsibilities at home. To give yourself some quick relief from these kinds of headaches, apply two to three drops onto your palm and gently rub your palms together, deeply inhale the vapor and massage the oil onto your temples in a circular motion. Be sure to avoid contact with your eyes!

Muscle Pain. My good intentions of having a more active lifestyle are being curtailed by those muscle aches from overexertion or tension. With the anti-inflammatory qualities of its lavender and eucalyptus essential oils, White Flower is the solution to pain caused by muscle swelling. To get your quick relief from muscle pain, apply two to three drops onto your palms or directly on the skin, then massage the oil into the sore area.

Colds. When my Vitamin C intake was not enough to stop the onset of the sniffles, I have no choice but to just ride it out. Fortunately, White Flower’s soothing and refreshing vapors can help ease the discomforts caused by sinusitis and nasal congestion. Place two to three drops on a handkerchief, then inhale the soothing vapors. My mom taught me to do suob (steam inhalation) for even faster relief: drop a bit of the oil into a basin of hot water, drape a towel over your head and inhale the steam. For a more comfortable sleep, apply a few drops on your pillow at bedtime. Not only will you have a more pleasant slumber, your pillow will also smell fresh and minty!

White Flower also provides relief from travel sickness and insect bites. Just remember the three-step action: ipatak, langhapin and ihagod!

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation

With a bottle of White Flower Embrocation in my bag, I can go back to being my usual tough and koboy self. After all, pain relief is just a few drops away.

White Flower Embrocation

White Flowet Embrocation

What’s your home remedy for pain relief?

To get your own stash of White Flower Embrocation, order now from Shopee or Lazada.

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation

White Flower Embrocation is a blend of six essential oils – peppermint, wintergreen, camphor, eucalyptus, menthol and lavender, all known for their analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It is manufactured by Hoe Hin Pak Fah Yeow Mfg., Ltd. in Hong kong, and imported, packed and distributed by Jelma Philippines.

White Flower Embrocation

For more information on White Flower Embrocation, visit its website.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature article.

New to being a plantita? Keep these tips in mind

Are you a plantita yet?

During quarantine, it seems that people all started cultivating houseplants. This is hardly surprising because plants do contribute to beautifying a space by providing spots of color or unique touches to the area. Since most of us are spending practically all our time at home, we are seized with the urge to improve the visual appeal of our abode with the use of houseplants.

Plantita Tips

Aside from their aesthetic contributions to our homes, houseplants also help in maintaining our health.

Some houseplants have known medicinal benefits. Aloe vera, for example, has been used to treat burns and skin, while the root of the ginger plant is used to help with digestion and nausea.

Plantita Tips

Aside from these, houseplants also help in maintaining our mental well-being. They give off a calming vibe that eases our stresses. Plants help to bring the outdoors into the home by reminding us of nature and wide open spaces. Also, since plants give off oxygen while taking in carbon dioxide, they help in improving air quality in our home.

Plantita Tips

If you’re a newbie plantita (or plant-parent), you might want to keep these tips in mind to make sure you get to enjoy your plant-babies, and their health benefits, for a long time.

1) Have the basics on-hand.

Plants basically need three things to grow and thrive: soil, sunlight and water. The availability of these requirements in your home should determine which plants you will choose and what gardening method you will employ.

Plantita Tips

If you have a large outdoor space for a garden, for example, you have the leeway to opt for larger plants that need lots of sunlight and soil. If you live in a condo, on the other hand, a smaller potted plant that does not require constant sunlight might be more appropriate.

2. Check your lifestyle.

Some people may have lots of time to devote to gardening and can take on plants with exacting care requirements.

Plantita Tips

Other may not have time in abundance, plants that are low maintenance may be the order of the day.

Plantita Tips

Luckily, there are products now available that help make plant care a lot easier such as self-watering systems and misters.

You might also want to consider if you have family members or pets that you may not always be able to control around houseplants. Pets may dig the soil from potted plants or chew on leaves, making themselves sick. Meanwhile, small children might pull off flowers or knock down potted plants.

Bearing in mind how much time and effort you can devote to the care of your houseplants, as well as the other living things that share the space with them, choose the ones that suit your lifestyle best.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

The plantita/plantito community in the country is growing and many of its members are more than happy to share best practices and useful advice to newbie plant owners. Search Facebook for groups on plants and gardening where you can post questions and ask for advice.

Your local plant nurseries are also good sources of information and equipment for plant care. Just ask the gardener about plant care tips.

You can also brush up on your plant care know-how by reading books or browsing plant care websites.

Being a plantita has its own unique rewards. Seeing your plant-baby grow and flourish will surely feel akin to a big accomplishment.

So with these tips in your plantita arsenal, you can face your plant ownership journey head on and enjoy the happiness it brings.

This post contains affiliate links.

Photos of plant nursery taken at D’Flora’s Garden along Katipunan Road, White Plains Subdivision, Quezon City.

My sparks of hope and joy for 2021

“A spark is a little thing, yet it may kindle the world.” – Martin Farquhar Tupper

2020 may have been characterized by one catastrophe after another, but those of us who made it through are now faced with the promise of better days ahead.

As we leave the disaster of a year that is 2020 behind, we bring with us the lessons thar we learned and the little things that got us through our darkest days to bolster us into the new year.

Here are the sparks of hope and joy that will continue to kindle in me the strength and courage as I continue to forge ahead.

Love of family

The quarantine which arose from the pandemic physically cut us off from almost everyone except our immediate family. Instead of catching up every evening on how each other’s day went at work or in school, we now spend the entire day together at home.

With the increase in time that I spent together with my family, I was able to discover new things about them: how Hubby polished up his cooking skills to be able to serve me the dishes that I’ve been craving for but can’t have because restaurants are closed, how my daughter #ExhibitA took the time to tutor her brother because I was too tired to do so, or how my son #ExhibitB did his best to adjust to learning from home despite his development issues.

I’m looking forward to discovering more to love about my family in the new year.

Constancy of friendship

Before the pandemic, busy work schedules and various responsibilities have already precluded frequent meetups with friends.

During the pandemic, the restrictions on mobility and the need for physical distancing made getting together with friends near impossible.

That doesn’t mean, however, that true pals will let those get in the way of friendship. There were those who were quick to send messages of concern and encouragement when my mother company was shut down, or those who immediately checked up on me and my family during the typhoons because they know I live in a flood-prone area. There were also friends sent tasty dishes and care packages to brighten my day.

These friendships bolster my confidence in facing the days ahead.

Innate goodness of people

With all the travails that 2020 brought, we Pinoys really went out of our way to help each other out. From contributing to #TulongTulongSaTaal and #PantawidNgPagibig, we helped to make vital supplies and essentials available to those who needed them most.

Abundance of blessings

Through all the dark times we’ve faced this year, there are slivers of sunshine that bring us moments of happiness and hope.

While the new work from home setup required quite a lot of adjustments for me and my coworkers, we were still able to function and be productive away from our office. The blended learning setup for my son enabled me to be more involved in his education, something that was very difficult when I worked in the office.

I was also gladdened to learn that many of my friends became entrepreneurs, providing products and services that became important because of the pandemic.

These are small blessings that when added up made life in 2020 bearable, and some moments even enjoyable.

As I leave the past behind, I carry these sparks of hope and joy into 2021.

I hope you keep your own sparks close to your heart and I wish you a better and happier new year.

Become a millionaire with Shopee Milyonaryo’s Christmas Special!

Shopee, the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia and Taiwan, brings back the massively popular Shopee Milyonaryo for the third time. Shopee Milyonaryo is an interactive lucky draw contest on Shopee Live, where Shopee users stand a chance to win up to ₱1,000,000 in cash, ₱5,000 worth of ShopeePay vouchers, and other prizes—just in time for Christmas and New Year!

From December 17 to January 4, users can participate by logging on to the Shopee app and claiming their raffle code. Users can collect raffle codes daily for more chances of winning.

They also get additional entries per draw when they purchase mobile load or data via the Shopee app. Each completed order qualifies as an additional entry. The same raffle code will be used for users with additional entries.

During daily draws, users with the winning raffle codes can get ShopeePay vouchers worth ₱5,000.

Grand draws are on December 21, December 28, and January 4. Users with the winning codes will be called on air via Shopee Live to choose among nine bags. Four bags will contain ₱10,000; two with ₱20,000; one with ₱30,000; one with ₱50,000; and one with the ₱1,000,000 jackpot prize. These users will also receive a ShopeePay voucher worth ₱5,000.

Before each grand draw, users can play Guess-the-Box on the Shopee app, where they guess which box contains ₱1,000,000. They will receive one free token, which they can then use to spend on the option they want to guess on. Users who guess correctly get the chance to share a coin pool of up to ₱50,000.

Martin Yu, Director at Shopee Philippines, said, “Shopee is happy to announce its third run of Shopee Milyonaryo. We saw the joy and excitement with which our Filipino users received the past two iterations of our raffle, and want to continue spreading the holiday spirit of giving with Shopee Milyonaryo’s Christmas Special. We also want Filipinos to enjoy the festivities and end the year on a good note. This 2021, Shopee remains committed to engaging and uplifting its consumers by creating more initiatives that let them enjoy the benefits of e-commerce.”

More details about Shopee Milyonaryo here.

Download the Shopee app for free via the App Store or Google Play.

Shopee shoppers embrace digital payments on 12.12

Adoption surges in North and South Luzon as ShopeePay provides shoppers across the Philippines with easy access to digital payments

ShopeePay, an integrated mobile wallet that offers users easy access to digital payment services, saw more consumers adopt digital payments at the recent Shopee 12.12. It was highlighted by a 50 times increase in ShopeePay transactions in the first hour of December 12 compared to an average day, as people turned to digital payments for their convenience and ease of use.

Martin Yu, Director at Shopee Philippines, said, “I am happy to see more people enjoy greater convenience and rewards with ShopeePay at the Shopee 12.12. Our integrated mobile wallet allowed users to check out purchases more quickly and securely while also accessing exclusive deals. It’s heartening to see more people using digital payments as their preferred payment method. It is a positive trend as digital payments become increasingly important in driving digital inclusion and the acceleration of our region’s digital economy.”

Rising confidence in digital payments in the Philippines

Filipinos used ShopeePay to discover exclusive deals, earn rewards, and complete orders at the Shopee 12.12. The most popular categories checked out using ShopeePay were Home & Living, Health & Personal Care, and Women’s Apparel, showing that people are now more comfortable using digital payments for various essential and lifestyle needs.

Key trends for the use of ShopeePay on December 12 included:

  • Growing digital adoption in cities: North and South Luzon saw the most significant uplift in ShopeePay transactions on Shopee than an average day, showing that ShopeePay offers users easier access to digital payments.
  • ShopeePay adoption increases across different generations: Millennials aged 18 to 34 continued using ShopeePay to conveniently shop for various needs such as kitchen essentials, mobile accessories, and makeup. Gen X users above 50 also saw a surge in adoption, with orders paid via ShopeePay increasing 24 times from an average day.

Yu closed, “As users become more accustomed to digital payments, we are committed to further growing our ecosystem of partner merchants so all users benefit from the convenience both online and offline, while businesses enjoy better growth in the future.”

About ShopeePay

ShopeePay is an integrated mobile wallet that offers users easy access to digital payment services. Launched in 2015, ShopeePay enables a seamless shopping experience by allowing users to make online payments on Shopee, top-up their wallets, transfer and withdraw funds, and make payments offline at thousands of merchants.

ShopeePay makes it easier to shop and do business. It provides users with a convenient, secure, and rewarding payment option; it empowers businesses and helps them to capture new opportunities.

ShopeePay is part of SeaMoney, the digital financial services arm of Sea Group. A leading digital payments and financial services provider in Southeast Asia, SeaMoney’s mission is to better the lives of individuals and businesses in the region with financial services through technology.

For more information on ShopeePay and SeaMoney, please visit seamoney.com.

Shopee 12.12 Birthday Sale kicks off on a high note, with four times more items sold in the first hour compared to last year

Shopee, the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia and Taiwan, kicked off its fifth 12.12 Birthday Sale on a high note with strong enthusiasm from shoppers across the region. Shopping activity surged at midnight on December 12, with four times more items sold in the first hour compared to 2019

Key trends in the first 8 hours of 12.12 Big Christmas Sale

  • Home & Living, Men’s Apparel, and Health & Personal Care are the most popular product categories among Filipino consumers.
  • People are prepping for fitness-related New Year’s resolutions by stocking up on activewear. In the first 8 hours of December 12, around 30,000 units of men’s jogger pants were sold. Filipinos are also keen on doing some home organizing over the holidays, with around 22,000 shoe box organizers sold.
  • Filipinos are eagerly snapping up the best deals in celebration of Shopee’s fifth birthday, with one shopper making almost 100 orders in the morning of December 12
    Shopping activity is also highest in Metro Manila, South Luzon, and North Luzon

Discover more unbeatable deals at Shopee 12.12 Big Christmas Sale until midnight at https://shopee.ph/m/christmas-sale

Grab helps Filipino merchant-partners grow with fresh insights, tools, and tech-solutions through Grab Unlocked 2020

Furthering its commitment to support the success of its merchant-partners, Grab Philippines launched its 2020 Grab merchant conference GRAB UNLOCKED: Opening Doors to Uplifting Your Business this New Normal. With insightful talks from Grab and industry experts, merchant-partner attendees learned about digital trends and tools to help grow their business resiliently and sustainably through digitalization.

Virtually held last November 19 and attended by Grab merchant-partners, GRAB UNLOCKED featured updates and insights from Grab’s Head of Deliveries EJ Dela Vega, Head of GrabFood and Grab Financial Group Marketing Daniel Anore, Head of GrabFood Greg Camacho, Head of GrabAds Martin Luchangco, and Grab Philippines Country Head Grace Vera Cruz. To give attendees an informative and inspiring learning session, aside from Grab Philippines representatives, GRAB UNLOCKED also featured industry experts and successful entrepreneurs to share their stories and provide meaningful insights that Grab Merchant partners can be inspired on to grow their businesses, namely Chef Margarita Forés, CloudEats co-founder and CEO Kimberly Yao, 24 Chicken co-founders Mark Ong and Jeff Sy, DITO-CME COO and Udenna Corporation CIO Donald Lim, and Unilever Sr. Omniretail Customer Manager Joselle Dela Rosa.

Embracing change to effectively adapt

Donald Lim, the Chief Operating Officer of DITO CME and the Chief Innovation Officer of the Udenna Corporation also joined the virtual conference to share how businesses can prepare for a post-pandemic world. With insights on how businesses can adapt their strategic response and the secret behind mastering a business pivot, Lim ended his talk remarking “We do not know when COVID will really be gone, but the more that we accept the reality this year, the more we can make adjustments to our business, and [sic] prepare our business, and future-proof our business for other challenges to come,” he said.

To prepare for the challenges to come, Head of GrabFood Greg Camacho unveiled the many upcoming features and upgrades to help businesses effectively adapt to the new normal. “We know that running a business is never a smooth process, and we want to be there with you every step of the way,” he shared.

Taking merchant-partners’ feedback into consideration, Camacho announced a range of features and upgrades to be launched in the coming months:

In the GrabMerchant App, merchant-partners can look forward to upgrades that will give a more seamless operations process through several new features:

  • The improved GrabMerchant Owner Profile gives access to the full suite of tools, allows easy management of employee roles, and provides a seamless shift for store profiles through multi-owner access
  • With communication upgrades integrated in the app, merchant-partners will also be able to quickly make order changes and have access to an in-app live chat for real time feedback from Grab’s support team

Outside the GrabMerchant App, merchant-partners will be able to get ample support through new platforms:

  • To give an even more efficient work process, Grab will be launching the GrabMerchant Portal, a web-based interface where merchant-partners can view and download analytics and reports on sales, operations, and campaigns. Businesses will be able to operate smarter and faster once the GrabMerchant portal starts rolling out in phases by December 2020.
  • Starting early next year, Grab will be launching the Ad Manager, where merchant-partners will be able to build and launch GrabFood ads from the GrabMerchant app in just a few minutes
  • This December, Grab will also be launching the GrabAcademy, a one-stop learning center where merchant-partners can easily access Grab merchant tutorials and courses. As Grab continues to innovate and provide new solutions for more efficient processes, the new GrabAcademy for merchants is sure to make learning much easier for its employees.
Putting safety at the core of your business

As businesses learn to adapt to the so-called “new normal,” addressing the demand for deliveries and prioritizing safety become key factors every business owner must take into consideration.

Unilever, a key partner of GrabFood in its commitment to providing safer meals, shared tips and tricks on how food businesses can ensure protection and good health of its employees and customers. With the goal of raising the bar for safety and hygiene in the food and delivery industry, Unilever Philippines’ Manager Joselle Dela Rosa talked about talked about all the cleaning and hygiene must-haves to maintain a safe kitchen— from surface sanitizer sprays like CIF to hand sanitizers like its new product Lifebuoy.

After a whole afternoon of insightful talks, Grab made sure merchant-partner attendees not only got learnings to help them with their businesses, but also a chance to win from hundreds of exciting raffle prizes. With the support of GRAB UNLOCKED’s co-presenter Unilever and sponsor Coca-Cola, some of the prizes given out were 500,000 GrabReward Points, Samsung S10 phones, Cebu Pacific round trip flight tickets to a local destination, Coca-Cola branded LED watches and cooler bags, Knorr Seasoning, and so much more!

Despite living in these unprecedented times, Grab Philippines’ Country Head Grace Vera Cruz assured its merchants that Grab will continue to be their partner in leveraging technology that can be utilized to further grow their businesses. “While we have a long road to recovery ahead of us, I am confident that by working together, we can build a stronger and more resilient economy; and it starts with every one of us fully embracing digitalization and unlocking its many opportunities,” she said.

Although today’s circumstances remain unprecedented, Grab is committed to working together with its merchant-partners to find the most effective solutions to better reach and serve their consumers. Through technology and digitalization, Grab will continue to provide its merchant-partners with various platforms that will help grow their business, such as the 2020 Grab merchant conference GRAB UNLOCKED.

To learn more about how you can grow your business with Grab, sign up to be a Grab merchant through https://www.grab.com/ph/merchant/food/

SKY calls on subscribers to share ideas on how to spark hope and joy this season

SKY hopes that through its holiday initiatives, its subscribers will be inspired to pay it forward and truly #bethespark of hope and joy to others this season and beyond.

2020 has been a challenging year for all of us, but now more than ever, we need to feel the spirit of Christmas in our hearts. Now is the season to kindle the warmth of caring, friendship, kindness and concern to those around us.

This Christmas, SKY invites its subscribers to share ideas on how they can #BeTheSpark of hope and joy to others, and bring inspiration, light and love this holiday season.

From December 9, 2020 to January 3, 2021, subscribers can simply visit mysky.com.ph/bethespark to send their answers. Lucky subscribers have the chance to win exciting prizes fit for the season such as motorcycles, tablets, smart phones, hygiene and health essentials, grocery packages, as well as surprise treats from HBO and SKY.

“We simply want to have our subscribers feel a sense of optimism and joy this holiday season despite everything that has happened this year. We encourage them to share and inspire others through their ideas showing their expression of love and thankfulness for what we have today” said Claudia Suarez, Head of Consumer Products Group.

SKY will also bring inspiring content as it gives subscribers opens more channels to subscribers at no additional cost from December 18, 2020 to January 1, 2021.

“Through television, families can still bond and create a festive mood despite these uncertain times,” added James Dumlao, SKY Head of Programming.

SKYcable subscribers can catch Chef Jamie Oliver share his delectable recipes for the holidays as “Jamie’s Quick and Easy Christmas” premieres on Metro Channel this December 19, 8pm. Viewers can also seek the guidance of Chef Giada De Laurentiis in preparing for a fun Christmas party as the fifth season of “Giada’s Holiday Handbook” premieres on Food Network.

A holiday celebration wouldn’t be complete without films that touch the heart and inspire wanderlust. Families can begin their movie marathon session on December 24th, 5pm as they tune in to All Day Christmas movies on Lifetime, with “This Christmas Hotel” being the main film highlight. They can also opt to imbibe the holiday spirit earlier as CinemaWorld takes viewers to a virtual travel adventure experience through their themed films starting December 20, 9pm. Young adults will surely enjoy the channel’s first feature film, “Dear Lemon Lima.”

Fans can also follow their favorite talent show, “The Masked Singer” season 4, on Blue Ant Entertainment as it highlights the countdown to the most-awaited finale. Meanwhile, a special glimpse of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree can be seen in the “The Today Show” on TAP TV every 8pm.

Kids get to learn and enjoy interactive game segments in MIAO MI’s “Find with Miao Mi”. Along with their parents, they can geek out on Discovery Channel’s “Rocket Around the Christmas Tree,” wherein they can spectate the most outrageous rocket-powered Christmas tree competition starting this December 23, 9pm.

There are many more channels to choose from and there is bound to be a show that will warm and captivate the hearts of everyone in the family this Christmas.

SKY hopes that through these initiatives, its subscribers will be inspired to pay it forward and truly #bethespark of hope and joy to others this season and beyond.

To know more about SKY’s Christmas campaign, www.mysky.com.ph/bethespark