April 30, 2011

taxes done right

The month of April was quite stressful for me because it is that time of the year when I have to file for my personal income tax return. For a regular employee, this is not a major issue because the company already takes care of it for their employees. But for a work-at-home mom like me, the process of computing and making sure that I file the correct amount and pay for it is quite a burden. It's a good thing that I have learned my lesson last year wherein I failed to pay my annual tax in time, and I had to ask for a tax return extension.

Even though there are different ways to pay taxes and no matter how much reminder the government extends to tax payers, it seems that tax procrastination is a national pastime wherein a lot of people still go through the rushed, stressful process. I think that one good reminder is just remind yourself how much penalty you will have to pay if you fail to file your annual tax return. Even for businesses, this is a process that their accountants have to be careful and be liable for in case they encounter a problem.

I've read somewhere that there is a tax preparation software available that can help in accurate calculations and even updates you on the latest tax laws so that you will be 100% sure that your taxes are done right. This is quite interesting and I will look into this, so that April will not be a stressful month for me ever.

April 29, 2011

Mommy Moments - Black and White

mommy moments

I have no picture of Joaqui that depicts black and white and so I made this for today's theme. This is one of Joaqui's recent pictures. We were at a relative's house blessing in Cavite and he ws playing by the garage. It was extremely hot that day, hence the beads of sweat under his nose. This picture also reminds me of how "siopao-looking" his cheeks are. I was teasing him the other day, I said from now on I will call him "siops" which is short for siopao and then I would plant kisses on both of his cheeks and make "yum, yum" sounds like I'm eating siopao. He would giggle and laugh, but he doesn't want to be called "siops." ; )

Have a wonderful weekend! Join us at Mommy Moments.

April 28, 2011

Nostalgia #4 - Bento

The month of May is fast approaching and for parents who have school-age children, it would mean that soon it's back to school for our children. Last school year was Joaqui's first time to go to school and I want his school snacks to be Bento style. I researched about it on the net and really got inspired for those who were into Bento making. These were the first Bentos that I made for Joaqui last school year. Unfortunately I was not able to keep it up because of time constraints and my lack of creativity...hahahaha! I remember the time I used to make these and back then I was so proud of myself. : )

But now I'm ready to do it again and this time really commit to it. I hope I could find more Bento products here and make Joaqui's school snacks cute and healthy when he goes back to school in June.


April 26, 2011

Good Friday procession

This was Joaqui's 2nd time to participate in the Good Friday procession here in our parish and I can say that he was pretty much looking forward to it. A month or so ago, he would ask me if it was Holy Week already because he wants to go to the procession. I don't know what draws him to do this, but he really walked the whole time during the procession without stopping, and without telling me that he's tired. I was not able to take pictures of him last year when it was his first time to join the Good Friday procession, so this year I came much prepared.

He was either holding his small cross or the lighted candle while walking. He endured a 2-hour walk and was even smiling for the camera.

After the procession, we went to my mom's house and he ate 3 slices of cheese pizza. The walking really made him very hungry!

That night before we went to sleep, Joaqui said, "Mommy, I want to go to the procession again next year." Well, I'm sure he will.

April 21, 2011

Nostalgia #3 - Visita Iglesia

Today is Maundy Thursday and here in the Philippines, Holy Week is celebrated throughout the country with great passion. One of the Lenten traditions carried out by Filipinos is Visita Iglesia wherein Catholics recite the 14 Stations of the Cross by visiting 14 different churches. I was a member of the Legion of Mary and along with my fellow legionaries, we carry out the traditional Visita Iglesia for a couple of years back then.


April 16, 2011

Sweet Saturday

This is my first time to join Sweet Saturday hosted by Mommy Jona of Heartifying. Thank you for the invite Mommy Jona and I'm looking forward to more happy Sweet Saturday posts.

My hubby is a shy person and he prefers to take the picture rather than be pictured. I think this meme will show the other side of hubby - sweet, gentle and kind.

This was taken in 2008 when we had a get-together with some of our couple friends from the yahoo group newlyweds@work. We had a mini-pictorial session and we were goofing around in this picture. It was a really fun night for all of us and I'm glad I met wonderful couples from that yahoo group.

Join us for a Saturday of sweetness here.

April 15, 2011

Mommy Moments - Birthday Photo

mommy moments

Joaqui celebrated his 4th birthday last December 28 and we just had a simple celebration. We heard mass in the early morning and had lunch at my mom's house. His 4th birthday cake's theme was Superman because he specifically requested for it. After lunch, we went to watch The Great American Circus with his two grandmothers and had dinner at TGIF's afterwards.

More birthday photos here.

April 14, 2011

Nostalgia #2 - My baby

Everyday when I look at my son, it seems that I'm looking at small miracles unfolding right before my eyes or like watching a caterpillar slowly turning into a butterfly - and though my heart overflows with joy being a witness to how he explores the world around him, I can't help bur reminisce the years that had gone by, when he was still a baby. Now he doesn't want to be called a baby, he said we should call him Joachim as his classmates would call him. He is starting to develop friendships independent of me and loves to do things on his own. Although it is still a long way before he goes to college, as a parent I am hoping that I would be able to help him to become this independent, unique person and allow him to explore and experiment. But I think he will always be my baby. ; )


April 13, 2011

un-mommy mode

Sometimes I ask myself if I've lost my identity as an individual now that I've been working at home and taking care of my child and my husband. In school and here in our place, some people refer to me as "Joaqui's Mommy." Besides the fact that they don't know my name, I guess Joaqui's friendliness makes him well known. : ) I think that's how it is with stay-at-home moms or work-at-home moms - more often than not, we are so engrossed with household chores and a million other things in our list that we have to do that we forget how to be ourselves - how not to be a mommy or a wife, for at least a short period of time.

And this is why I am grateful for mommy friends and relatives because one way or another, they also feel the same way and so when we get together, we are just women who wants to unwind and talk about other things we are passionate about. Like for example when I stopped blogging, my mommy friends asked me why I stopped, and that I should go back to blogging because I'm good at it, or I should pursue culinary arts because I love to cook. These statements really make me feel good about myself because to me it means that I'm good at something else and that other people appreciate the things that I am capable of doing.

As shallow as it may seem, a text message from a thoughtful cousin made my day today. She texted me early in the morning asking me if I want to see The Script Concert with her because she has a free ticket for me. Although I replied late that I would love to watch the concert with her, she texted me this: "I thought of you first kasi personality wise you're game, tapos you're fun to be around with, and the coolest part is unlike many married women friends I know you know how to be an individual and not all the time dapat kasama si hubby. Bottom line Ate Jeng, I really think you're COOL :-) so I wish we can hang out together because I'm sure it will be FUN!"

Now I realize that even if I don't go out with friends as often, this still gives me a sense of balance in my life and I acknowledge the fact that at the end of the day, being myself is as equally important as being a good wife and mother.

April 8, 2011

Mommy Moments - Summer Plans

mommy moments

Summer - every child's favorite season because as what Bugs Bunny said, "No more classes, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks!" As for us, if I ask Joaqui about his summer plans, it can only mean two things:

1. Playing - with his toys, by himself or with other children everyday.

2. Dancing. We were supposed to enroll him in swimming classes, but he said he doesn't want to have swimming lessons. Since his school offers a dance workshop for the whole summer and he likes to dance, I asked him if he would like to join a dance workshop and he said yes. It started last April 2, but I forgot my camera that day so I had no pictures. He seems to be enjoying it.

Click here to read about more summer plans.

April 7, 2011

Nostalgia #1 - College Buddies

This picture was taken during my freshman year in college where one of my college buddies was celebrating her birthday. I get nostalgic every time I see this photo because I think I spent the best years of my life in college with them. It's a little sad that when we went out separate ways after graduation, we lost in touch except for those whom I get to see on Facebook. I'm still thankful for the gift of friendship they shared with me and I'm still hopeful that one day we will all get to see each other.


April 1, 2011

Mommy Moments - Congratulations!

mommy moments

I did not know how fulfilling it was to be able to send your child to school and then watch as they move up to another level or graduate - until now that Joaqui goes to school. Although they did not have a moving up ceremony (he just finished Nursery), they had a Thanksgiving Mass and a simple class farewell party on the last day of their final exams.

We are so proud of Joaqui for what he has achieved in school and how his emotional and social well being developed. Congratulations not only to the students who graduated or moved up to another level, but kudos to the parents who have been a pillar of support for their children.

More proud mommy moments here.