Friday, February 29, 2008

Last New Year’s Eve

I was browsing my phone for some pictures of Bela that I can post here and I chance upon this picture.

This picture was taken last New Year’s Eve at my grand mother’s house. Bela just so love wearing these shades of my cousin, Aliah. She even strike a pose or two on camera wearing this. I was really laughing after seeing this picture of Bela with her Tita Tessa.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Who is Bela? By Wowo Ben

Hi and pleasant day to everyone. Wowo (Lolo) Ben or Lolo groovy is here. Just want to share some of amazing characters our beloved granddaughter exhibits to us that we all find very enjoyable to watch and very exciting to listen. For us, some of the things she does are unexpected for a 2 ½ years old baby. She got a very keen memory. Even at her early age before she turned 2 years old, I already noticed her being familiar to every road she has passed. For instance, going to little gym, she knew the way, all the way from tondo where we live to ortigas where little gym is housed. Most of the time, when I was not around, her dad drives her to school. The routes and the roads her dad prepares are different from my choices. With her dad it’s about one hour or more from their residence to ortigas but with me, it only takes ½ hour or even less. Bela seldom sleeps while on her way. She’s very particular to her surroundings, “ang likot talaga ng mata”. So when I’m her driver, she thought that our route was not leading to little gym. She will start crying and even keep trying to get her hands on the wheel. Trying to hold the wheel gave me the idea that she wanted to change route, so her mom and dad or even wowa (lola) would explain to her, “It’s alright baby, don’t worry. The road may be different but we are still heading at the little gym”. Just like that, and all the crying are gone.

Another Sunday has come and bela together with her complete entourage, wowo, wowa, dad, mom, and yaya accompanied her to little gym. After class, our itinerary was to take lunch at greenhills and do dome shopping. To be there, we traveled through Meralco Avenue and U-turn in front of Meralco building. While we stopped waiting for a safe u-turn, bela started yelling, “no, no, no, Fun Ranch, Fun Ranch” (at that time, she can already speaks some words) “no, no, no, wowo”. We still made a U-turn while the rest were explaining to her that before going to fun ranch we must eat our lunch first at greenhills so she will calm down. Imagine, fun ranch is about a mile away from Meralco, but even from that distance, she knew already that that road is leading to fun ranch.

Here’s more, our time were totally consumed at greenhills so our chance to go to fun ranch as promised, did not push thru. So when we were back at the car, we took the road back home. No amount of explaining had ever convinced her that our route was leading us to fun ranch. She knew it was our way back home. Good for us, she was tired already that after a while, she fell asleep.

Truly I am convinced how intelligent and smart my cute and beautiful apo is Sometimes I thought of changing her title from “Prinsesa ng Bicolandia” to “Reyna ng Kalsada”.

Well then folks, till next time. Asta La Vista, Ciao, and God Bless.

Spread the Wave

When I became aware of internet blogging, I wasted no time and exerted my efforts to become one among the bloggers and be part of the bloggers’ world creating and spreading blogger waves.

Internet blogging when I fully understand it has given me an impression that the blog carries and offers lots of opportunities. Aside from the incentives every member received from the tasks given to them, members of the blogger world gain international exposures that who knows, maybe someday pave or open another window of opportunities.

That is why I felt an overwhelming joy upon learning that I qualified and became an official member of Bloggerwave and do my share in spreading to the world the impact brought and created by blogging. And what is amazing is that the waves that we bloggers created are full of information that surely will help every living individual on earth to make living very, very easy.

And if you are a blogger, isn’t it a wonderful feeling that you earn while helping others at the same time. So sign up now and be a part of the growing community of Bloggerwave.

bloggerwave

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Bela’s piano masterpiece

Howell and I had a silent war since the other day. But Bela must have really wanted us to kiss and make up and so she was doing a lot of thing to catch our attention. And so she succeeded since Howell and I were both laughing when we saw her singing while pretending that she is playing the organ.

You can read the whole story about it on my other blog - www.myplanetpurple.com

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Zenni Optical


For all those who can afford, most of the time, they always settle to buy what is expensive because for them they are always the best. But Zenni Optical $8 Rx Glasses, or Zenni Optical $8 prescription glasses, a leading optical supplier and manufacturer who markets internationally proves that there are some products sold at a cheaper price and yet turnout to be among the best. Specially when they come from Zenni Optical, who offer different kinds of optical frames, varieties of corrective single lens eyeglasses and different style of protective sunglasses which all goes with fashion for just $8 a pair. Because Zenni Optical are the ones manufacturing their products, they can afford to sell them much, much cheaper compared to others.

In every Zenni Optical outlet around the world and even in their website, a phrase which reads “Best Thing Found: Zenni Optical” are posted and visible to every visiting customers. It’s their trademark that guarantees every customer that if their looking for the best, Zenni Optical got it all. Every purchase made at Zenni Optical is 100% satisfaction guaranteed.

So for all those who have not yet tried Zenni Optical’s products, when you feel the need come and visit their site and be among those who considered that the Great Discovery: Zenni Optical is a treat for their life, because Zenni Optical is not just the best. They are the best among the best in terms of price, quality and fashion.

8 Random Things About Bela

I've been tagged by Ems and Jane. Thanks a lot mga sis. Super enjoyed doing it.

8 Random Things About Bela:

.: this is my first digital LO for Bela :.

1) Bela was born on November 16, 2005, 3 PM at Chinese general Hospital via Caesarian Section. Her birth weight was 6 lbs.

2) She is the first grand daughter and first niece in my family. One reason why she is really spoiled as she has a lot of “abogado” in the family.

3) She was born with a congenital heart disease called VSD (Ventricular Septal Defect) which means that she has a hole in heart. That’s why I think she is so spoiled today as her lolos and lolas always give in to her whims and tantrums as they don’t want to upset her or make her cry even for just one second because of her heart condition. But God is really good as the hole in heart is now close.

4) She is really one active and agile baby. Even when she was just one month old, we don’t need to change the position of her head when she is sleeping as she can already move her head and change its position.

5) She would prefer to play with balls and cars instead of her dolls.

6) At 1.5 years old, she already knows her shapes and colors, the different parts of her body, and almost all the letters of the alphabet.

7) She loves to sing and dance.

8) She loves the camera. At 1.7 years old, we can easily ask her to pose like a model. And every time she sees someone taking a picture, she would say “picture, picture” and would start posing.

I am tagging Apols, Thea, Jacqui, Jody, Joy, Kelly, Mich, Peachy, Kathy, Kitts, Mec, Nice, Pheng, Toni, Yvelle, and Eds.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Online Billiards, It’s Magic

Playing billiard is my kind of game that once upon a time, I even dreamt of competing internationally. However, due to the line of work I have been engaged in, I never had a chance to realize that dream.

Then one day while browsing at the sites, BilliardMagic.com caught my attention. As I read carefully with excitement the information regarding the online billiard it offers, suddenly the old dream of mine became alive again. I made my subscription immediately and there after, consistently participated on their online pool tournament held worldwide, cast with their online billiards players whose names are known internationally.

Online billiard is really magic, so come and join. This is where online billiard players play the best of every online pool tournament.

Online Casino

We really have to be thankful for all the people who introduced online link to different forms of products and services via the internet. It does great wonders to everyone engage.

The inclusion of casinos to be part of the present online service link all over the world by joylandcasino.com will surely be welcomed by all virtual casino lovers. With the online casinos, virtual casino players have a great chance of playing along or against his favorite casino greats at the comfort of their own home.

Virtual casino players who are on vacation with their love ones and miss the thrill of casino games can just easily log on to various online casinos available in the site and play and enjoy the game. How wonderful life can be.

Wowo (Lolo) Ben Blogging

Please welcome my dad in the blogging world. I have added my dad as one of the contributors for Bela's blog. I already gave him a crash course a while ago about Blogging 101, so eventually I will fully turn over this blog to him.

He has a lot of great stories to tell about her dear apo, so do come back for more amazing stories of Bela from her lolo’s point of view.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Can’t keep my promise

Ok, ok, I was not able to keep my promise to take a break from online shopping as I bought stuffs for Bela again at allaboradtoys.com.

When Peachy gave me the link, I just browse the site and didn’t pay much attention as I really wanted to take a break from online shopping because I already spent a major part of my blogging earnings already to shop for Bela. But when I saw from Jane’s blog the stuffs that she bought for Sophia from allaboardtoys.com, I can’t help myself and so I checked the site again as they really have cute Dora items. And since the price is really a steal, I decided to buy these for Bela, which she can use when she starts to go to school, come April.


.: Dora the Explorer Making a Splash Tin Lunch Box :.

.: Dora the Explorer 10oz Big Kid Insulated Straw Cup :.

.: Dora The Explorer Boots Placemat :.

Thanks again Peachy. And tama si Jane, you are the best source talaga of great grabs online.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Oh NO!! –A late sleeper again

Since I was sick last Friday to Sunday, we decided to let Bela sleep at her lola’s house so she won’t catch my virus. During her first night there, she slept at around 12 AM. Maybe it’s because she’s adjusting to the new environment so she finds it difficult to fall asleep. The next day, she slept around 1 AM, as she was so busy playing PSP with her Tita Veejay and Tito Jp.

On the third day, I decided not to let her sleep at her lola’s house as her sleeping habit has changed since she slept there. And I don’t want her to get used to sleeping late since she will start to go to school this summer. She didn’t sleep the whole day come Sunday and so she fell asleep around 8 PM. But then she woke up at 8:30 PM and started to cry and she was saying “wowa, wowa” (lola, lola). Of course the dad gave in to his daughter’s whims and let her sleep at her lola’s house again. And guess what, she went to bed at 1:30 AM na daw according to my mom.

This is bad. I hope she’ll get back to her old sleeping schedule now that she’s back in our house.

Post a Smile

I got this tag from Eds. It's all about posting the cutest smile of your child. Thanks for this tag sis. I enjoyed browsing Bela’s albums in search for her picture with the cutest smile. Actually I had a hard time choosing the picture that I will post as Bela is smiling in almost all of her pictures, so I’m posting a number of Bela’s picture here:

This picture was taken when Bela was only 2 months old on her second month birthday.


This picture was taken when I bought her a new dress when she was 7 months old.


This picture was taken at La Luz Beach resort – Bela’s first time at the beach, when she was 1 year and 4 months old.


This was taken at HK Disneyland with lola.


This was taken at Boracay last October, 2007.


And this last picture was taken at home when we had her pictorial for her second birthday invitation and tarpaulin.

I would like to tag Apols, Jacqui, Jane, Jody, Kelly, Peachy, Nice, Kitts, Ems, & Toni

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Shopping at Midtown

We we’re finally able to visit the Midtown wing of Robinsons Place Ermita yesterday.

I have to go to the Express Banking Center of BPI at Robinsons Place to do some banking transactions. And so we decided to drop by at the Midtown wing after I finished my transaction at BPI. And boy it was big.

It is a heaven for Bela (and for me too, being the shopaholic mommy that I am) because there are a lot of stores for the kids at the 3/F like Toys R Us, Gingersnaps, Osh Kosh, Guess, and a lot of my other favorite stores.

So we ended up buying a lot of stuffs for Bela. Dad bought her a doll with stroller at Toys R Us and I bought Bela another set of clothes at Gingersnaps. (I’m starting to collect new sets of clothes for Bela since they don’t have a uniform at Toddlers Unlimited).

We we’re not able to check the other stores as it is late already. But we will surely come back here.

Sign up Now

I have read a lot of great feedbacks from my fellow blogging friends on how Blogvertise has helped them earned extra money from blogging. Since I’m online most of the time, I decided to give it a try.

And so I signed up with Blogvertise just today. It’s so easy to sign up. All I did was fill up the online form and submitted my blog for approval. Once my blog gets approved, I will receive an email from Blogvertise about the tasks that I have to do for them. Then I just have to write an entry in my blog based on the task requirements emailed to me. And once my post gets approved, I will get incentives from it.

It’s that easy. I’m getting excited already. I enjoyed blogging ever since but for sure I will enjoy it more, now that I can get extra incentives from it.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Bela's Weekend

Bela was not able to attend her class at Little Gym last Sunday. I was down with fever so Howell decided that we should all just stay at home to rest. Sayang nga kse Jacqui is dropping by at the gym. Chika ever sana at lakwatsa sa Podium.

It’s also bring a friend week at the gym and I invited Djuan of Pheng & Donar to attend the free trial class. I just asked Peachy (thanks again sis) to bring the invite so Pheng can get it at the reception area so they can avail of the free trial. I wonder how did the trial class went. Hope Djuan had fun also. I’ll wait for your kwento Pheng.

They’re here

When we went to Bohol, my friend lends me her Avent Tempo. This is the new disposable bottle of Avent and the nipples are just the same as the ordinary bottles of Avent. So I just need to use Bela’s Avent nipples for my friend’s Avent Tempo. And this is so convenient specially if you’re traveling. I only have to bring one bottle – the Avent Tempo, and I just have to replace the nipples.

.: the new Avent Tempo :.

.: pre-formed liners :.


So when we went back from Bohol, I told Howell that we have to buy an Avent Tempo also as it is really useful. I tried searching all Baby & Co. outlets as well as Babyland but unfortunately the Avent Tempo is still not available here. So we asked our ninang if she can order it for us and she was kind enough to order it online. I even ordered a 3 pack 11oz bottles and fast nipples as it is really cheap online.

And just last Friday the package arrived. Thanks again to Ninang Lanie for ordering it for us. Sa uulitin po…

Friday, February 15, 2008

SALE!! SALE!! SALE!!

I was not able to control my urge to shop and save for our travel money. When I heard from Peachy that Old Navy is on sale, I immediately checked their site and add all that items that I like in my shopping cart. It’s really super cheap kse and the stuff on sale are all nice. Plus if you convert it to peso, it’s even cheaper compared to Gingersnaps and Kids of Bayo. So I was not able to control myself. Anyway, I just gave myself a spending limit and I didn’t went over it naman. Below are some of the items that I bought for Bela and Howell. Do I look like a shopaholic already? LOL.

.: slip ons for dad :.

I also like this blouse but it is already out of stock.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

80 - 20

After visiting 4 schools and attending trial class to 3 schools we’re now 80% decided to enroll Bela to Toddlers Unlimited. I talked about this with my husband and with my mom and dad (since they are the ones who will bring Bela to school). Actually, all of us liked Toddlers Unlimited. First because Bela enjoyed her trial class there (which is a good sign). Second, they are the only school that I found that offers 3x a week schedule. All the other school that I inquired to only has a 5x a week schedule. Third, they we’re able to give lessons to kids in a manner that kids will enjoy. And we really like it since we’re not looking for anything serious this time for Bela. Right now our goal is to make her enjoy school, gain some socialization skills while having fun. Fourth, I gathered a lot of good feedbacks from mommies whose kids go to Toddlers Unlimited.

Our only dilemma which is stopping us from enrolling her there is the schedule since all class is in the morning which means Bela has to wake up early. But weighing all the pros and cons, we figured that a 3x a week schedule (M-W-F) would be a much better set up than the everyday class.

So our plan now is to enroll Bela to the 2x a week summer class and if she likes it, then we will enroll her to the 3x a week class come June. I’ll wait maybe until end of February before I finally make a decision to enroll her.

3rd School Stop: Mind Specialist School – D. Tuazon, Quezon City

Bela had another trial class yesterday at Mind Specialist School. This school is recommended by one of Bela’s classmates at Little Gym. I was not able to go with Bela to attend the trial class since I was already on leave for two days, so my mom accompanied Bela to attend the trial class.

The first activity was again free play where kids can choose the toy or material that they want to play or work with. Right after free play is the circle time. At first Bela was enjoying joining the teacher and the other kids in singing even though they are singing in Chinese. But after circle time, Bela asked my mom to take her out. Even if my mom tried to divert her attention so they can finish the class, Bela still persist that they go out of the room. My mom took Bela first at the romp area so she can play some more and plans to take her back to class when she warmed up already. But she doesn’t like to play at the romp area either and she kept on saying “wow-wowo” (lolo) while pointing to the gate.

The rooms in Mind Specialist don’t have glass window either (just like in Cambdridge). Maybe that’s why Bela wants to go out. We observed kse na she is like that every time she is in an enclose room with no windows. We initially plan to go back again to attend another trial class and I will go with Bela this time but I figured that her reactions would still be the same because of the room issue.

So I guess Mind Specialist School is not the right school for Bela. Sayang kse it’s nearer our place compared to Makati and I liked the facilities, the program, the teachers, and the curriculum of the school. If ever nga na nagging Ok ang trial ditto ni Bela, I might enroll her here. Oh well, when it comes to our final choice, Bela will be the boss.

Monday, February 11, 2008

More School Search

After doing some readings and research on the net, I was able to narrow down my list of schools that I’m considering for Bela. We decided that we will visit Toddlers Unlimited and Cambridge Child Development Center. They are the only schools that have good feedbacks which offer 3x a week class for Bela’s age. All the schools that I contacted only offer a 5x a week schedule for Bela’s age group. As much as possible kse, I only want a 3x a week schedule for Bela this school year then move her up to a 5x a week schedule next school year when she is already 3.7 years old. Right now kse, I still feel that 5x a week schedule is too much for her age.

After our trial class at Cambdridge, I’m already leaning towards enrolling Bela for summer class at Toddlers Unlimited. But over lunch, my dad and I discussed the schedule if ever I will enroll Bela at TU. Class at TU starts at 9 AM and since we are far from Makati, they have to leave by 7:30 to arrive their on time. This means, Bela has to be awake by 6:30 – 7:00 AM. And the lolo think it is too early for Bela and they are worried that Bela might have a hard time with that set up.

So we decided to look for other schools in the QC area after lunch. One of Bela’s classmates at Little Gym is enrolled this coming summer class at Mind Specialist School at D. Tuazon, and so we decided to visit the school.

The school is nice – they have rooms for each class, they have a romp area which Bela really loves, each classroom has their own CR, they even have a security system where they have cameras in all the rooms so they can monitor the kids and the teachers, they have a waiting area for the parents and yayas, they have a computer room (kids have a computer class everyday), and audio visual room where students watch an audio presentation once a week. Maximum student per class is 15 and they have 1 teacher, one assistant teacher, 1 Chinese teacher and one yaya per class. My mom will accompany Bela tomorrow for her trial class there.

I like the school and I like the curriculum (they are also a progressive school) but they are more expensive than TU. But it is because they have a 5x a week schedule compared to 3x a week schedule of TU. My only concern is their 5x a week schedule but looks like I would have to consider a 5x a week schedule since my choices for good preschool that has a 3x a week schedule is really very limited.

We also visited Early Achiever’s Learning Center in Binondo and Sgt. Rivera. They have the same facilities as Mind Specialist and the same teacher to student ratio except they don’t have an assigned yaya per class. I was also reading their website, and I really like their curriculum and method of teaching. I just have to wait for their call tomorrow if they will allow us to have a trial class. Otherwise, I have to remove them from my list.

So I’m now down to Toddlers Unlimited, Mind Specialist and Early Achievers Learning Center. Hopefully, we will be able to make a decision soon. This would mean a heart to heart talk with my hubby and the lolo and lola who will be with Bela everyday during class.

2nd School Stop: Cambridge Child Development Center – Banawe

Both Bela and I didn’t like Cambridge. It offers the same curriculum and method as Toddlers Unlimited so they almost have the same daily routines in class. It is the classroom facility of Cambridge that I didn’t like.

The toddler class and the nursery class are housed in the same room and they are only separated by chest-high dividers. So it can be really noisy specially if they are doing some singing and group activities because you can hear what the other class is doing. And Bela was really distracted by the noise and so at the middle of the class (right after the group singing activity) she started to become cranky and is asking me to take her out.

Plus there are no windows where I can peep through to see what’s going on inside the classroom. Not like in Toddlers Unlimited where there are glass window where I can easily see how Bela is doing. And also, Bela doesn’t like it when the room is like that. Maybe she is claustrophobic. That’s why she really started to be cranky and is always pointing at the door as she really, really wanted to be out of the room.

Honestly, I got a little bored with the class. I too, wanted to go out and was tempted not to finish the class. Pero nahiya naman ako sa teacher. So kailangan kong utuin si Bela para wag mag toyo. Good thing I was able to make her stay until after snack time. Since they will just have a practice for their March presentation after snack time, I asked for Teacher Grace’s permission if we can go out already since Bela is already feeling cranky.

I still inquired for the fees from the school administrator even if I’m not to keen in considering the school. Their tuition fee is almost P6, 000 per month for 5x a week class.

The only plus point that they have against TU is they have Chinese lesson integrated with their curriculum but I’m still not sure if this is really a plus point for us since we are not Chinese.

I read some goof feedbacks about Cambridge. But it’s really true that it is important to try to attend a trial class and visit the school because that is the only way to gauge how my daughter will react to the environment.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Nanay – Tatay – Mommy – Daddy

When I was still pregnant with Bela, Howell and I discussed how we would like our baby to call us. I want to be called Mommy while Howell wants to be called Tatay. So I told him, our baby will call us Mommy & Tatay then. But he didn’t like the idea because he reasoned out that our baby might get confuse. So I have to give in and we decided that our baby will call us Nanay & Tatay.

So we have been calling each other Nanay and Tatay and when Bela was born, that is what we introduce to her. But when Bela started to talk, she started calling us mom and dad instead. Maybe, that’s what she always hear from the DVDs and TV programs that she was watching.

And so Howell can’t do anything and from then on, we switched from nanay-tatay to mom (mommy) and dad (daddy).

Counting backwards with Sid

Remember the movie, Toy Story? There is a part there where Sid (the psycho kid) was counting backwards before he launches the rocket to fire Buzz Lightyear.

We we’re watching this movie this afternoon and Howell and I we’re both shocked when Bela counted backwards (from 10 to 1) with Sid. I just stared at Howell in amazement and he was as amazed as I am. OMG, Bela can now count backwards.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Trial Class at Toddlers Unlimited

We arrived a Toddlers Unlimited around 11:05. Classes start at 11:00 am so when we arrived, the class is just about to start. Teacher Lei called us in and Teacher Gabby (she’s the one that I talked to when I inquired over the phone) allowed me to join the class too so Bela won’t have a hard time adjusting. First routine is the free choice where children can select the toys or materials they want to play with. At first, Bela keeps on tugging my hand and wants me to get the toy for her. But after warming up a little bit, she got used to the new set up and started to explore the toys on her on. They spend 45 minutes for this routine. After the free choice, they started to pack away the toys and I was so proud that Bela willingly obeyed Teacher Lei and she started packing away the toys. (This is also their routine at the Little Gym so she is a little familiar with this kind of setup.)

Next routine is Circle Time. Teacher Lei gave Bela props (like pictures of sun, star and spider) that Bela can use while she is singing. And Bela gladly sang with Teacher Lei and she was imitating the actions that Teacher Lei was doing together with the songs.

Then it’s Art Time. They were asked to sit on the chair and they we’re given materials to work with. I was so proud again of Bela because she just sat on the chair and patiently waited for Teacher Lei to give them instructions on what to do. Teacher Lei gave them coloring materials and she asked Bela what is her favorite color. Bela answered “vilet (violet)” and then she picked the violet dot-to-dot pen. She started to imitate what Teacher Lei and her classmate Tal is doing. After the activity, they we’re asked to follow Yaya Yeyen to the washroom to wash their hands. I guided her out and she lined up and let Yaya Yeyen washed her hands.

After Art Time is Snack Time. We we’re not informed that we have to bring snacks so Bela don’t have anything for snack time. But Teacher Lei gave Bela some cookies. I went out of the room to get her water and when I entered the room, I was surprised that Bela is sitting and she was eating the cookie on her own. And she just grabbed her water cup and drink from it and didn’t even ask for my help.

When they’re done eating, they went out of the room to go to the Romp Area for playing. Before they can go to the Romp Area, they have to line up first outside and follow Teacher Lei who will lead them to the Romp Area. On the floors are pictures of animals and Teacher Lei asked the kids to step on one of the animals. This way, she is already asking the kids to line up. Bela of course, had a great time at the Romp Area.

I was really glad with how her trial class turned out because I was able to prove that Bela is already ready for preschool. She was able to interact well with the teachers and with the other kids. I just hope that she will still act this way even if we’re no longer around inside the classroom.

My mom was also impressed with the methods TU is using. TU is a progressive school which utilizes individualize and age appropriate methods to teach the kids. My mom is a former educator (25 years as a kinder teacher) so I was kind of scared that it will be difficult to impress her and I might have a hard time getting her approval. But she too was so impressed with TU. My mom even commented that that’s what she was looking for, for Bela. That they employ non traditional methods to entice the kids to learn and at the same time, Bela is still having fun.

Actually, I’m already set in enrolling Bela there. There is just one thing that I didn’t like during the trial which concerns me. When the kids are playing at the Romp Area, Bela climbed the Little Tykes Activity Center and the two teachers are not looking after her. My mom just ran inside the romp area to hold Bela because the activity center is a little high and she almost fell down. And then she fell down at the slide because, again the two teachers are not looking after her. But I can just point this out to Teacher Gabby if ever I enrolled Bela because she is really a little active for her age so she really needs to be looked at while playing. And I think we should still try to attend trial class with other preschools so at least we have something to compare TU with. I would still be on leave on Monday because I have scheduled a trial class for Bela at Cambridge Child Development Center in Banawe so watch out for my post about that.

I didn’t bring Howell’s cam and my mom’s camera was low bat, so I was only able to take a few pictures.

.: eating her cookie while listening to Teacher Lei's story :.

.: @ the romp area :.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

1st School Stop: Toddlers Unlmited in Makati

I showed the website of Toddlers Unlimited to Bela just before she went to sleep. And she keeps on saying “oh, wow, oh wow.”

We will be going there tomorrow for her trial class. Hope she will like it as much as see like it when she saw it on the website. So I’ll be off from work tomorrow. Too bad Howell can’t make it as well as my mom. I wanted them to go since I want them to see the school also so they can help me decide. Ako kse yung tipo na kailangan may hingan ng second opinion bago ako mag desisyon.

Oh well, the important thing is Bela is with me so I can just observe how she will react to the new environment and I will just take it from there.

I’ll post my story here on how the trial class of Bela goes.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Last Week at Little Gym

Bela was not in the mood last week at her Little Gym class. She participated in the first part, but went out of the gym in the middle of the class. She was saying “hungry, hungry.” Eh kaya naman pala, gutom pala ang baby ko. So we let her finish her milk. She was not able to drink her milk and sleep on our way to the gym that’s why she’s a little cranky. After she finished her milk, she went back inside the gym and played with her classmates, as it is ball time already.

Here are some of the pictures:

.: doing the monkey jump with teacher clara :.

.: teacher clara clapping for bela :.

.: it's dad's turn inside the gym :.

.: playing with the hoops :.

.: trying to roll the hoop :.

.: giving the hoop back to teacher clara :.

@ Fun Ranch

After Bela’s class at Little Gym last Sunday, we we’re able to have a quick stop at Fun Ranch with Peachy, Gelo and Joaqui. Peachy and I have long been planning to go there together but we always have conflicts with our schedule. Last Sunday, we decided to go there for Joaqui’s pictorial and we we’re able to try some rides in the middle of the pictorial.

Here are some pictures.

.: eating joaqui's hotdog :.

.: super happy @ fun ranch :.

.: joaqui, big boy na :.

:. with the stilt walkers :.

.: bela & dad riding the ferris wheel :.

.: not scared of heights? :.


Joaqui was sleepy after the shoot and we have to go to Mandaluyong to attend the 4 PM mass of Howell’s brother, so we decided to part ways around 3:30 PM.

We really had fun. Next time, try natin yung iba pang rides.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Preschool Reviews as shared by mommies from Mom Exchange

As most of you now, I’m already starting my preschool hunt for Bela. I have been following the thread at mom exchange about Traditional vs Progressive school and I have learned a lot from the different insights shared by moms of preschool students.

I just want to share here the summary of all the feedbacks and comments that I gathered about the pre-schools within the Manila, Makati and QC area from mom exchange just in case you’re in a hunt for preschool also. (I didn’t include the preschools in the South area as it is already far from our place.)

Disclaimer: The feedbacks & comments listed here are just a summary of the feedbacks and comments that has been shared by moms of preschoolers at mom exchange. I still don’t have a first hand experience with these preschools as I haven’t done my school visits yet.

Hope you will find this useful.
===
1. EXPLORATIONS - MANDALUYONG
(+)
· good school, good feedbacks from parents of students
· they explore things with kids. Children have endless questions which the kids answer themselves – because they find out by themselves with the guidance of their teachers
(-)
· High Tuition fee (90K)
· there are really no worksheets! they let the kids draw or paint on paper and that's pretty much it.
COMMENTS:
· Have Chinese lesson as elective for Kinder

2. COMMUNITY OF LEARNERS – VELENCIA, QC
(+)
· affordable
· One of the 1st progressive schools in the Philippines
· Child centered, encourage parent participation
· have lots of interesting activities that make history, science, math & social studies come alive
· have good feedbacks
(-)
· Materials are not very new

Comment:
· Teaching method is based on bank St (in NY) & MI

3. TODDLERSS UNLIMITED
(+)
· recommended by directress of Explorations
· low student: teacher ratio (Best student-teacher ratio) 1:3
· Also, unlike other schools, the atmosphere is very open and welcoming to parents. Parents are welcome to peek in the classrooms through glass windows on the doors.
· Also, when I looked into the background of the teachers, I was satisfied. Most are graduates of Ateneo and DLSU, and come from good high schools too.
· Classroom is cozy and promotes a homey atmosphere for the kids
· Nice school with a nice environment and a lot of individual attention to kids

(-)
· Don’t place an emphasis on worksheets. I know this is typical of a progressive school; however I have encountered some progressive schools that also do have fun projects and creative worksheets for the kids. I just feel that having ample writing time is important for a balanced curriculum.
· Toddlers unlimited is very play based, although I think their 3yr old class has some writing time involved... but unlike other schools, time and emphasis on these is minimal.
· One parent shares that come graduation time, her child and some of her child’s classmates had difficulty making it into the big schools
· Some parents find the curriculum lacking in more academic work and daily “drilling” of basic concepts
· Toddlers is a great first school for a kid since it teaches them that learning and school can be fun but at some point, the kids need a bit of some drilling too.
· Curriculum is almost similar to Gymboree

4. THE LEARNING CONNECTION – SAN JUAN
(+)
· Chinese is good
· Teachers are very nice & speaks fluent English
· They have worksheets every week so you will know how your child progress
· Good school with good teachers
· School believes in children learning through discovery and so you can expect that the school goes all out when it comes to supplying the children with materials to work with.
· Has a huge library & environment is print rich
(-)
· Method is progressive but not pure progressive as there are work sheets
· Mixed reviews from parents

5. CREATIVE SPACE
(+)
· tuition fee is very reasonable
· low student-teacher ratio (max is 6 kids)
· Curriculum, outstanding, very impressive indeed.

Contact Person: Teacher auchee villaraza, who also owns the school: 915-0391 & 0919-8356634.

6. SECOND MOM
(+)
· They do home visits before school year starts
· School’s philosophy: instilling a love for learning in a child by making it fun
· Sends weekly email talking about the child’s activities for the week and bi-monthly email talking about child’s progress

7. EARLY ACHIEVERS

Comment:
· They lean more towards a traditional/eclectic teaching. This means it is not fully progressive so they’ll probably have worksheets

8. APPLE SEED MONTESSORI – MAKATI
- P110,000 for 5x a week schedule
(+)
· Clean
· Kids are very disciplined
· have a lot of authentic Montessori materials
· Ratio 1:6
· They do academic work everyday depending on what area is scheduled for the day: math/geometry, reading/language, cultural studies/geography, practical life/sensorial
· has art class 2x a week
(-)
· They change teacher every year
· 80 students in 1 classroom (separate tables lang)
· Parents have mixed reviews about the school

9. MOTHER GOOSE PLAYSCHOOL - MAKATI
- P110,000 for 5x a week schedule

10. PHILIPPINE MONTESSOR – WHITE PLAINS
- P140,000

11. MUSTARD SEED - MAKATI
- P85000
-mustardseedpreschool.multiply.com

(-)
· small school
· dont have a lot of development toys (blocks,manipulatives)
· not good feedbacks

13. RAYA SCHOOL – Scout Area
http://www.raya.org.ph
- P42,000 annual fee
(+)
· 1:9 teacher-student ratio
· The Directress (Ani Almario) has a Masters Degree in curriculum development from Standford University
· Kids are give an early start in Science
· They have monthly talks where they invite a Parent to talk about his/her job and or passion, artist to teach the kids his/her craft, people in the community to talk about their work
· Developmentally appropriate and child centered ways of teaching
· Has a very down to earth atmosphere and you can really feel that teacher there is motivated by sincere care for each child.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Computer 101

Bela just had a crash course about computer hardware from Howell. You see, we bought a new PC yesterday and Howell opened it to connect the DVD burner that I received as a gift from my boss. Being the eager girl that she is, she jump beside Howell and tried checking the open CPU that dad is configuring. And so Bela had her first crash course on computer fundamentals from her dad. Hey it’s never too early to teach computer to Bela, since she is the daughter of two systems administrator. LOL.

See the video below. I had a blast watching Bela enjoyed her crash course.

video

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Discoveries

Bela loves animals. He is not scared of dogs, horses, cats, even hamsters and tarsiers. She would not be scared to touch these animals and would love to play with them. But we just discovered there is one animal that she wouldn’t want to touch or even get near at. And that is the....

.: lola, what's this? :.

.: eww, a starfish :.

.: can i touch it? :.

.: never mind mom, you can have it :.

.: mom - see bela you can touch it
bela - i don't think so mom :.

....starfish. I don’t know, maybe it's the way it looks that makes it look scary for Bela. Or maybe Bela finds it weird that a star has spikes and tentacles that’s why she doesn’t want to touch it.