1001 Things To Do · Arts and Crafts · Learning Through Play

String Painting with my Preschooler

Friends, I present to you…. Colorful Chaos by Aki Endaya


This painting now has a special spot in our wall.

And all these colors just started with these three.



We have done several painting projects in the past. And my usual complaint is how hard it is to reopen tubs of paint. We usually pour paint from the cans to smaller containers. The problem with that is paint dries around the opening making the cover and can stick. So for our last project, we used spoons.


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Maqui's Me Time · Work-related

First Week Back at Work


A few days before I went back to work, I experienced some withdrawal symptoms. I was not ready to say goodbye to my temporary stay-at-home-mom-hood. Now, I realize that I wasted my energy worrying. One, there was no point. There was no choice. Even if my heart said no, my wallet was shouting NOW! Hehe. While Franco is doing a great job providing for the family’s needs and wants, my salary is what we invest for our retirement fund. I think everyone will agree that it is better to work now and relax during retirement rather than, relax now and worry about finances when we get old. And two, work was not as toxic as I expected. Sure, there are 6000 emails that I will never finish reading. There will always be work left undone. But what is important is the work that gets done, the relationship that  you have with your colleagues and bosses and the fullfilment from knowing that you were part of someone’s journey to success.


Here are some highlights from my first week.

Brunch with two of my favorite people at work. We have been together for 10 years!!



I realized that after 10 years, this is the first time that I am blessed to have a view.



Wednesdays are for family nights. At exactly 5:17PM, we are home from work. Life is good. I hope Franco and I can keep Wednesdays sacred.



I went to Franco’s office for my first cervical cancer vaccine shot.

Maghanap ka ng di marunong mag-selfie
Maghanap ka ng di marunong mag-selfie


Met with buyers from my online garage sale. Nice to meet you, Ruby and April


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Arts and Crafts · Costumes

Last Minute DIY Paleontologist Costume

Good morning!

I am back at work. It feels like I had been missing in action in the office for a year. Even the small things like how the printers work and where do we save files A and B, I need to relearn. While I would rather stay at home forever, no complains about going back to work. The 2-month medical leave that I took was a blessing in disguise. It allowed me to rest and examine what really is important to me. Am very grateful for my teams, colleagues and boss who stepped up and helped each other while I was out. Last week, I prayed for God to remove the heaviness that I was feeling. As usual, He listened.


The downside, of course, is that I won’t have as much time to focus on the things that like to do like DIY projects and blogging.

Speaking of DIYs, one of the fun projects that I worked on last month was Aki’s costume for Liam’s When I Grow Up party.  It did not register to me until a few days before the party that we need to come up with a costume related to the theme.


Lucky me, Aki’s dream profession isn’t so complicated.  Continue reading “Last Minute DIY Paleontologist Costume”

Aki's Preschool Years · Akisms


My four year old son’s honesty, curiosity and innocence get me laughing or get us in trouble.


Dear Jesus,

Thank you for everyone
Thank you for our toys
Thank you for the prayers
Thank you for giving us something
I like you because you are good
I like you because you listen to me
Thank for you for everything I like
Jesus help me become a good boy every day
And super super super super huggy you (hugs himself, pretending he’s hugging Jesus)
What are the different kinds of clouds?





Aki: Daddy is wasting our time!
Me: Huh?
Aki: Because he loves us.
Me: Huh?!



Aki: I want to marry you but I am not an adult yet



During our writing drills….

Aki – I can’t do this!
Me: Yes, you can. Just do it. Don’t think about it too much.
Aki: How can I stop thinking? I have a brain, remember?!!!


Crying after he tripped….

Aki: I fell because the power of the armadillo did not work!!



Talking to his jujitsu instructor….

Aki: Excuse me. My brief is stuck to my pwet.


Talking to his dentist…

Aki: Excuse me, Doc. Are you kalbo?



Me – Aki, Tita Jana said you include her in your prayers

Aki – She’s your sister. You pray for her.

Me – I will but you should too.

Aki – Okaaaay, okaaaaaay. I will forget so you remember to make me not forget


In short, remind me. Another title in my resume — my son’s secretary.


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Mrs. Monologues · Personal Finance

Insurance for your Kasambahay? Why not!!

No mommy friends get-together is complete without dedicating at least 15 minutes for rants about our kasambahay or our kid’s yayas. Lucky me, I am very happy with Ate Doring who celebrated her 2nd year with us last April. Before she came into our lives, we had 6 helpers in 6 months. Major headache, I tell ya. Ate Doring is not perfect but we love her. And I want to think that she loves us back.


Once you have found the perfect/almost perfect/pwede na yaya, the next challenge is keeping her. On top of her convertible vacation leaves and annual salary appraisal,  we keep Ate Doring happily employed by supporting her rakets. She gets additional income by doing chores for my sisters-in-law. She also sells plastic and paper scraps. Whenever we have the chance, we bring home empty plastic bottles for her. And starting this month, we turned over Aki’s Ice Candy business to her.


Recently, we discovered an insurance product that we added to Ate’s compensation and benefits package.


Kasambahay is a group yearly renewable term plan from Manulife. You can choose from Plan 285, Plan 410 and Plan 660. For only PHP 660 a year, in the event that something happens to Ate, her  dependents will receive the following:

Continue reading “Insurance for your Kasambahay? Why not!!”

Aki's Preschool Years

First Day High (Part II)

Part I here

As soon we arrived at the school, Aki looked for his friend and nursery classmate, Enzo.


Parents were given a few minutes to watch from the windows.

Aki’s seat is on the last row. He said he likes his seat because of the aircon.


Kids nowadays are so lucky.We only had ceiling fans in classrooms when I was still studying.

Teachers are lucky too. They now have laptops and projectors.


Listening to Miss Malou like a boss..


Continue reading “First Day High (Part II)”

Aki's Preschool Years · Family Traditions

First Day High

Today, Aki went to school without Ate Doring or me, accompanying him. First time ever. The service van arrived 20 minutes earlier than schedule. Aki just stepped out of the bathroom. Ate and I dressed him in a hurry. He was holding one shoe, trying to figure out if it should go to left or to the right foot. I grabbed the shoe and put it on his foot. Aki got upset and said,” Mummy! You are not a good mommy. I want to wear the shoes by myself. I can do it.” That was the first time he told me that I am not good. I was stunned. I realized that I was not being a good parent by doing something for my son that he can do on his own. I apologized, removed his shoes and gave them to him. I went to the door and told the driver’s assistant that we will be out in a minute. When I turned around, Aki was already wearing his shoes. I gave him his bag, kissed him on the cheek, said I love you and whisked him away.

Hay hay. Where did that helpless demanding baby go?

We have been preparing him for the big school since summer started. We have been telling him that he’d be going to the same school that his dad, uncles and most of his godfathers attended.

Our daily drills included writing his name and A to Z’s. We also have a lot of on-the-spot Q&A’s. What do you say if you have a classmate who looks different from everyone? What if you have a classmate who does not have friends? What if your classmates won’t let you join their game? What if your classmate can’t carry his things? What if you have a classmate who likes to play with dolls? What if someone tries to bully you? What do you when someone tries to punch you? I posted a snippet of our Q&A in my Instagram in case you want to see. I hope he remembers everything we taught him — friendliness, tolerance, handling rejection, and self-defence.

Days before school started, we went to his barber.


Ate bought “aircool’ sandos and socks in the market.

I covered his books, wrote our last name on each side and taped the sharp corners. The only fun part  was when I slid my scissors thru the plastic cover but the rest of the process is just boring. I hate it when I realize too late that I did not allot enough allowance.


Aki tried on his uniform.

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Aki's Preschool Years

Good morning, Lord! Thank you for giving us this day.

Today, I release Aki  into Your loving hands as he goes to his new school for the first time.

Please send him friends who will be good influences to him. May Aki be a good influence to them too.  Shield him away from bullies. And if Aki ever has to come face to face with a bully, remind Aki the skills that he learned in his bullyproof class.

Lord, please give Aki’s teachers the knowledge, patience and motivation that they need.  If their students are driving them crazy, whisper to the teacher’s ears words that will calm them down and clear instructions on how to deal with situation. Also, guide the rest of the school staff so they can do their job well.

I pray that You always keep Aki’s school service van away from harm. When there are rude drivers on the road, when the traffic is unbelievable, when their passengers get too rowdy, please tell the service driver and his assistant what to do.

May Aki always come home with a smile, eager to tell us about his day. Teach him to prioritize his homework over his toys. And if there is something that is bothering him, please make sure he feels that his parents are always here to listen.

When Aki starts to feel that the lesson is too difficult, that he is not good enough, that he does not belong, that he is better than everyone else,  please push the devil away so it can no longer whisper lies to my son’s ears. Lord, please keep him excited to go to school.  May he always be curious and always wanting to learn new things. Keep him resilient so he will continue to push forward despite past failures. As you know, Aki sometimes tends to be too competitive. Show him that being a winner is not everything.  With the help of his new school, reveal to us the talents that you gave him and how can we use them to glorify You.


In Jesus’ name, Amen!


Memoirs of a Mummy

Family Fridate: Maleficent

Have you guys seen Maleficent?


If you haven’t, you should! If you have kids, you should not miss this because this is one of the rare films that everyone in the family will enjoy


Prior getting engaged, I was a hardcore Angelina Jolie fan so this movie was extra special. I loved the scene when Viv, Angie’s youngest daughter played young Aurora.



And I think I even saw Zahara in the inauguration scene. I also liked that there were no defined good guys and bad guys in the movie. Just people and fairies who get hurt, who make mistakes, who regret those mistakes, who love. And although I kind of expected it because of the last princess movie that I saw, I like the ending.

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Holidays · Memoirs of a Mummy

Summer Of 2013

Aki’s summer vacation is about to end. Huhuhu.
Before the school year starts, lemme tackle the oldest draft in my head — our summer Elbi vacay 2013.

If you remember, Aki had his first vacation without us last year. All cousins stayed in our anscestral home in Bayog because my UK-based relatives were home for a few weeks.

What happens when you put 5 boys and 1 girl with ages 3 to 10 in one roof? Chaos! Clutter! And lots of laughter and happy memories.

Pillow fight

Muscles muscles muscles

Jumping on and from the bed



The newest Go Go Balls addicts in town.

The reason we were all home is that my Tita Ming was celebrating her 60th birthday. Can you guess the theme of the party?



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