Friday, October 17, 2014

Henkel Innovation Challenge 8 : Create.Learn.Grow.

For seven consecutive years since year 2007, Henkel, makers of globally known products including Persil, Schwarzkopf, and Loctite has been sponsoring the Henkel Innovation Challenge. Henkel is organized into three globally operating business units namely Laundry and Home Care, Beauty Care, and Adhesive Technologies. The Henkel Innovation Challenge is focused on innovation specifically in these areas. Now on its 8th year, this student competition continues to drive home the point that innovation is the key to success.

Henkel Innovation Challenge 8: Create.Learn.Grow.

Once again, the Henkel Innovation Challenge motivates students to create an innovative concept while having the chance to be coached by Henkel managers, to compete with students around the world, learn about sustainability, and to bring their creative and management skills to the next level. This year's theme is Create.Learn.Grow.

How to Participate

Register online as a team of 2 students and submit an idea for an innovative and sustainable product or technology for a Henkel brand in 2050. Successful registration will provide access to an e-learning platform with helpful material, hints, and tips. Submission is completed by stating motivation to participate and providing CV information.

Expected Benefits

Joining the Henkel Innovation Challenge offers extraordinary opportunities for mentorship as Henkel top managers take on the task of developing participants' projects while training their skills. Being an international competition, joining provides opportunities to meet like-minded people. This is not merely competition as participants are expected to have fun networking with their peers from different cultures. Also, it is a chance to have a real business experience with one of the world's leading companies at that.


Of course, there are the fabulous prizes to provide added motivation to compete. The first winning team stands to win a ticket around the world and 10,000 . The second and third winning teams will be awarded travel vouchers worth 4000   and 2000 , respectively. The three winning teams will also be invited to the Henkel Headquarters in Dusseldorf to meet CEO Kasper Rorsted. 

Career Opportunities

The many success stories as told by many participants to the previous challenges highlight the point that the journey does not end when the competition does. This has been proven by those who went on to build their respective careers with Henkel. Some saw the competition as the perfect way to introduce themselves to the company, an opportunity that is not usually available.

My Say

Behind every product or innovation is an individual or group of individuals who dared to dream of the possibilities and acted on it. Excellent products are never an accident. They are the results of meticulously working on ideas until they actually benefit their intended users. 

That said, the very reason why competitions like the Henkel Innovation Challenge are relevant is the fact that there will never be more than enough of good products. As human needs evolve, so should the products that cater to these needs change. We learn and grow as we create.

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Sunday, October 12, 2014

Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko Marks its 20th year

It started with a simple dream to make children happy by giving toys at least once a year. That dreamer was Aga Muhlach who just happened to be starting what would be his long-time collaboration with Jollibee Foods Corporation. Thus, 20 years ago, Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko was born.

Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko is a toy and book donation campaign. During the first year, Aga decided to celebrate his birthday via a live show of his sitcom wherein toys will be accepted as entrance tickets. The purpose was to get toy donations which will be brought to an orphanage and the rest as they say is history as Aga and Jollibee partnered and worked together to make this yearly event something to look forward to.

Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko - Beyond the Christmas Season

Although Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko will always be associated with the Christmas season, Aga points out that it is not time or season-limited at all. Maaga ang Pasko is often interpreted in the local parlance as good fortune that came early. This project operates the same way thus the presence of Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko in efforts to give joy  to those affected by natural calamities for example.

What to Expect for the 20th Year of Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko

Mr. Harvey Ong, Vice President for Marketing Marketing at Jollibee Foods Corporation shared that the public should expect more from this yearly event as Jollibee continues to make its presence felt in other countries. He also shared that other companies are expected to join and collaborate in this event, taking it to an entirely new level of coverage and reach. This simply means more opportunities to make children happy with the gift of love through toys and books.

Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko Launch in South Luzon

Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko was launched in South Luzon today at Jollibee Canlubang. The people were serenaded by the Lumen Anima Chorale with Pinoy Christmas Carols. One of the highlights of the event of course was the special guest appearance of the original Jolly Toy Scout, Aga Muhlach.

Principle Behind the Campaign

The main reason for this campaign however is not to be forgotten. Aga did the honors of putting in the first donated toys and books in the designated box. He was followed by the Jolly Toy Scouts. After which, the Jolly Toy Scouts went around to collect the donation of the others in the event.

The Invitation

Jollibee will be holding 20 caravans across the country this December wherein they will be distributing toys and books collected from customers and JFC employees to select beneficiaries. Everyone can make this Christmas season the jolliest ever for children by donating new or pre-loved toys and books to Maaga ang Pasko boxes located in all Jollibee stores nationwide.

To make an online donation, visit www, and click on the Maaga ang Pasko microsite.

My Say

It has been said that one proof of a program's effectiveness is the length of time it has existed. With the launching of Jollibee MaAga ang Pasko's 20th year, there is no doubt that this campaign sparked by a sincere desire to give happiness to children will be with us for many, many more years. 

That said, we look forward to being part of this campaign year after year after year...

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Truths and Myths About Winter Driving: Michelin Road Usage Lab Primer for Busy Mums

A lot of myths surround winter driving. For us to be able to take the necessary precautions during extreme weather conditions such as winter, we need to know the truth behind all these myths. Mothers have to face winter conditions with their children at the back seat of the car as they go about bringing them to school, shopping, and commuting to work and that is an unavoidable part of life.

It is a good thing that Michelin Road Usage Lab has come out with timely tips based on extensive research to explode and debunk some long-existing myths.

Myth #1 

Snow is the biggest driving menace.

Truth: During the winter season, 95% of road accidents do not happen on snowy roads. One study from VUFO reveals that 57% of accidents happened when the road wasn't even wet.

What does matter is the temperature. Rubber hardens and reduces its grip when exposed to cold weather. Cold-weather tyres are specifically designed to reduce the impact of hardening, enabling them to maintain their good road grip. It is important therefore to ensure that the right rubber is used, whatever the weather forecast is.

Myth # 2

The city is safer than than the country.

Truth: Those twisty and turny tracks in rural areas are not exactly very appealing to driving mums because of the common impression that accidents are more likely to happen while negotiating these roads. The fact is, fewer accidents happen in the countryside as over 2/3 or 68% of reportable incidents in winter happened in the city.

Well-lit and well-salted urban streets can actually be riskier than mountain tracks. This is because frequent stop-start driving increases the chances of skids and shunts. It just makes perfect sense that more braking and more cornering equate to more opportunities for something to happen. Preparing your car for winter makes the difference. Switching to winter tyres will keep your family safe.

Myth # 3

Winter tyres mean snow tyres.

Truth: Many drivers think that winter tyres only work on snow-covered roads. Winter conditions go beyond those white stuff but also include cold weather freezing fog, heavy rain, and black ice, among a long list of possibilities. 

The ability to be able to stop when needed is very critical in winter and cold weather conditions. Winter-grade tyres perform much better under braking in all cold conditions. A properly equipped car will take 4 meters less distance to stop from 49 mph at under 6 degrees centigrade. That's a whole car's length distance!

Myth # 4

It's not worth changing tyres for a short ski trip.

Truth: While this may not be applicable to driving to holiday ski homes that are just a few miles away like most people have in UK, it is always worth changing to winter tyres for that couple of hours drive to your holiday home. 

Ski slopes are just that - slopey, and having proper winter tyres increases traction on hills in cold condition by a staggering percent. The right tyres will get you up a 13% gradient and will keep you safe going down.

Myth # 5

Winter tyres slow you down.

Truth: Some people complain that winter tyres feel heavy and sluggish. Driving on snow and ice can certainly feel that way. The important thing to remember is that cold-weather tyres perform more efficiently than summer tyres on such condition. 

Acceleration is one area of concern here. It makes perfect sense to be careful about your speed in winter. Winter tyres can get you moving three times faster than summer tyres on snow because of the better grip and low-temperature performance.

My Say

Mums can never be too careful when it comes to their families. Why risk accidents that can be avoided with the use the proper product and common sense?

Michelin, the company from Clermont Ferrand has been continuously studying how people drive for more than 125 years and does not intend to stop. By watching thousands of drivers each year in hundreds of varied driving conditions all over Europe, it continues to uncover fresh insights how people really use their cars today. It does so with one purpose which is to provide the safest driving experience possible.

That said, now I can say that I have gained very helpful tips, if and when I do get the chance to drive on such weather conditions. 

For more information, visit: total performance

Friday, October 3, 2014

Survival Tips for Working Moms

Having a career does not exempt mothers from housework, child care, and other domestic concerns. Most working moms juggle career and mom duties but end up sacrificing personal well-being in the process. How can this be prevented?


1. Time Management

Everyone only has 24 hours within which to be able to work, rest, and do preferred leisure activities. Since no one gets more time than anyone else, time management holds the key to maximizing productivity in a day. Setting priorities is an essential component of successful time management.

Working moms are better off managing their time to do necessary tasks based on their priorities. To include those that are not important will only needlessly clutter what is already a hectic schedule to begin with. Making lists of things to do the day or week before saves a lot of time while minimizing stress caused by forgotten tasks.

2. Get Help

One common option for getting help especially here in the Philippines is hiring household helps. Getting a household help is not actually the only option. Working moms can ask for the help of their spouses, able-bodied children, and friends.

An arrangement can be arrived at to delegate some household work to the spouse. Children can also do their share by doing very simple tasks. Loyal friends can also extend their support like running errands which they will likewise do any way.

3. Accept Unchangeable Realities

Lastly, remember that not even super-moms will be able to do everything. There are bound to be unfinished tasks. Continuously subjecting minds and bodies to stress will eventually takes its toll on mental and physical health .

Getting sick just makes it more difficult , if not impossible, to do what needs to be done. It would be best to focus on priorities and provide time for others as schedule permits. The key is to do all tasks well to avoid wastage of time in redoing or repeating them. 

My Say

With my recent return to the workforce, I am faced with many challenges in relation to time management and physical endurance. The demands of work as an employee in today's employment scenario are such that keen competitiveness and technical ability are primary requirements. 

That said, I hope not only to survive but prevail over the challenges faced by working moms like me. With my family solidly behind me, I believe I'm halfway there.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The IKEA Time Travel Experiment No. 2

At best, people look into the idea of time travel with much skepticism and disbelief. This is not very difficult to understand considering that it has not been known to have been successfully carried out physically. But how about time travel through the mind? IKEA takes us to this possibility one more time through its Time Travel Experiment No. 2, this time with couple Jeff and Beth.

Imagining Possibilities 

Most people would indulge into thinking about their future but it is not always easy to do so in a realistic manner. How do we create a situation that can possibly approximate our future? IKEA helps its customers imagine possibilities right in its own bedrooms and bathrooms. Through the help of world-renowned hypnotist Justin Tranz, Jeff and Beth do not only get to imagine their future but experience it as well like it was happening now.

Experiencing Possibilities

For couples like Jeff and Beth, taking their relationship to the next level is the nearest possibility. How would Jeff pop the question? How would Beth react?

After marriage comes kids. How they would fare as spouses and parents will always be special points of interest for them. How would they fare with a five year-old son or a fifteen year-old son for that matter?

How will Jeff as a father answer his five year-old son's awkward question of "Where do babies come from?" Will he be able to provide an acceptable answer or will he just skirt the issue like most parents are wont to do?

How will the couple fare with a fifteen year-old son who considers what most people would call noise as music? Will seeing a glimpse of that future prepare them more?

Jeff and Beth got to experience all of these moments with the assistance of Justin. They were allowed to go through different future periods of time while in a deep state of hypnotism. While the power of suggestibility was very much expected to work with Beth who was open to this kind of ideas, skeptic Jeff still proved highly-suggestible enough to go through the motions while believing that everything presented to them was real.

It was very interesting to hear Jeff say that he will be a good dad. Beth was hinting on changing a few things. Experiencing the future probably has a way of making what we really want a lot clearer.

To complete our story, here is the full video of Jeff and Beth's time travel through hypnotism.

My Say

I have always wondered what I would do if were to know what will happen in my future. Sometimes I feel like knowing but then again sometimes I'd rather not know. Families make more memories at home than in any other place. Every room tells its story. Find your future bedrooms and bathrooms in IKEA as you and your family make memories together.

Remember that while we cannot totally control our future, we can always manage it a little more with wise decisions at the present time.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Yearly Search for Christmas Tokens

It has been our yearly practice to give our children's classmates small tokens every Christmas. Most of their classmates (or their classmates' parents) are very generous in giving them gifts. We figured it was just right, though not necessary, to give something back no matter how small, thus our yearly search for Christmas tokens. 

Image Source

For the past years, we have been giving items like pencils, button pins, key-holders, mini picture frames, small toys, and just about anything we think will make young children happy. There were also a couple of years that my children gave their classmates handmade book markers and Christmas trinkets. This year, we found what we were looking for very early and it came on the very first day of the "ber" months of 2014.

Less Complications

Early this year we have decided to make our lives a little less complicated by doing the things we needed to do anyway as early as possible. The plan was to do necessary tasks if and when opportunities  present themselves. Though buying the yearly Christmas tokens was not yet on the priority list, we chanced upon Ai Online Shop during one of our usual web searches looking for another product. My young daughter saw one product that she thinks will be suitable to give to her classmates this Christmas. Since the cost was not that much anyway and we will end up crossing out one item in our to-do list for the year, we acceded to her suggestion and the items were delivered 3 days from the date of our order.

Early Buy

These are the magic crayons ordered by my daughter for P 22 each. There were actually a lot of choices but she has set her heart on this item. Ai Online Shop offers a wide range of products including clothes, accessories, bag and wallets, beauty and wellness products, mobile accessories, school and office supplies, toys, as well as home and living products. This early buy represents one less task to think about especially during the often chaotic Christmas shopping rush.

Plus Two for Herself

The total cost of the magic crayons she ordered left her with some money to spare. She asked us if she could use the remaining money to buy something for herself. She chose the 12 color loom band maker kit and the loom board. I didn't have the heart to say no as she has been asking to have them since the loom band craze exploded. I realized that has been quite awhile already. As we rarely find the time to go out and shop for things anyway and to reward her for her patience, we allowed her to make the additional order. These comprise what has been delivered to her yesterday.

My Say

For someone who has been a wary online shopper, I think I'm finally getting the hang of it. My previous experiences including this one have been thankfully quite convenient and pleasant. What I especially like about online shopping is that I have the time to think over and over before I make any purchase. There is absolutely no pressure in having someone wait for me to make a purchase or not.

That said, I am now finally willing to admit that online shopping is a very good option for shoppers who don't have time to go to stores. Of course, there will always be a need to visit physical stores for some of our purchases. For those purchases however wherein such effort can be dispensed with, online stores serve their purpose quite well. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Bag

If you are anything like me who use my bags up to their last ounce of quality serviceable life, you would most likely benefit from reading on to the end of this post. I will not be able to survive going out without a bag because I tend to bring everything but the kitchen sink with me. Here are the factors I consider when I choose my bags:

It must stand the test of time

Quality bags do not come cheap. This is why we must choose bags that will be able to stand the test of time not only in durability but in style as well. How many bags still in excellent condition are languishing somewhere in our closets just because they are too identified with past trends? We would need to choose bags that will look trendy in several seasons, if not years. I make it a point to have at least one bag for each basic color like black, brown, and white.

It must be functional

Our bags must be able to serve their purpose especially for the required space without sacrificing style. Choosing a bag without considering its functionality may result to bags being damaged early. Over-stuffing bags tend to affect their form, shape,and their serviceable life since they are made to bear more than their standard capacity. Sturdy canvas bags like these work very well for me.

It must cater to my personal taste

It is a fact that we use the bags we like more than the others. Bags that we choose based on our personal taste reflect our personality. Showing a bit of personality through our bags manifests our individuality. I have always been partial to crocheted items and interesting details in any item so that would explain why these two bags caught my attention.

It must offer variation

There are days that we just want to look different. I have always been on the safe side when it comes to color and design of bags. I make sure however that I have a bag or two that offers variation. I find them very suitable with my outfits that border on the boringly plain side. 

My Say

I really do not have much time to go to department stores to shop. Lately, I have been finding out just how convenient it is to shop online. For my bag needs, I've discovered that I can find the best selection of bags at Zalora Philippines. This is where I found all the bags shown here. 

That said, I consider bags as necessities. So I need them to last and I want them to have the look that I would like to bring with me. How about you? How do you choose your bags?

Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Emerging Influential Blogs of 2014: My Choice

That time of the year has again come to choose which among the fairly new blogs will form the Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs of 2014. I believe this is a very good way for new blogs to get the proper exposure and be discovered by a larger audience. I know that by experience, having received the same benefits for two of my blogs last year.

And so here are my personal choices:

1. Dateline Movies

This is my 14 year-old son's blog which deals mainly on movies and everything related to it. It has become a platform for expression for him specially since he has always been a very shy boy. I know that being part of this writing project as well as being nominated will push him to do better. 

2. Adventurous Outdoors (Jefrox)

Reading blogs that deal with the outdoors is something I personally need to encourage me to be more physical. The posts in this blogs are very informative towards that end.

3. Not Your Ordinary Mom

No mom is ordinary, certainly not when you're balancing life, family, and work. This mom writes about ordinary things she seems to be doing extraordinarily well.

4. Jlofied

This blog is all about celebrations done the author's way, the JLo way. It is always good to read about something happy or just about any reason to celebrate.

5. Delightfully Desserts by Zheyme

This blog got me on "desserts". Being a sweet tooth myself, I especially like finding recipes for simple desserts especially those that are products of experimentation in the home kitchen.

6. Raket Hub

Every freelancer needs a site that can provide tips in finding opportunities for sidelines or "raket". This blog offers that.

7. Pinions and Plumage of Love

This is a  very interesting blog from a mommy blogger who sees God as the center of the family. She talks about blessings in life and who couldn't help feel positive about that?

8. Tweensel Mom

The author is a work-at-home mom so that explains why I find her posts interesting. I'm also a WAHM.

9. Pinas Social

Stories and happenings in the Philippines is always interesting. This blog offers an easy read of such articles.

10. Mommy Bloggers Philippines

This is a very active community blog of which I am a part of. It does not only support its members in the blogging department but also in the everyday challenges of mommy life.

The Emerging Influential Blogs 2014 Writing Project is sponsored by the following:

Digital Influencers Marketing Summit
Certified Blog and Social Media Entrepreneur Program
Philippine Internet History #phnet20 Project
Digital Creators Boot Camp
Infinity Hub Web Development Services

My Say

Good luck to every blog that has been nominated, especially to my son who has found a part of himself in blogging.

That said, no matter what, every blogger who goes through this challenge comes out a winner.

Monday, August 25, 2014

How to Inspire Others Through Writing

I opened my computer to something very wonderful today. Filipino Bloggers Forum (FBF), one of the groups I belong to, held the online celebration of its 2nd anniversary last night. In this celebration, a good number of members have been recognized in different award categories, including myself. I was given  the "Most Inspirational Blogger" award and that got me thinking on how I could have inspired another or others through blogging. On a larger scope, how exactly do we inspire others through writing?

Allow me to share my thoughts.

Write from the Heart

Everything I write comes from the heart and that is with no exception. I write about people, things, and events that affected me in whatever way.  I try very hard to make even the most generic topics personal because that is simply how I am inspired to write. I think inspiring others can only come from an inspiration that comes within.

The Desire to See the Positive in Every Negative

Blogging has caught me in different moods and circumstances. When I write about something happy, I acknowledge the reason. When sad, I pour my emotions in a way that only written words can. The one thing though that I always try to do when writing about something negative is to find positivity in it, no matter how difficult. Being human, I do not always succeed but I do try, very hard, for me to find comfort. This is with the hope that I can pass it on to my readers.

Look into Thy Self

We can only speak and write with authority if we truly know what we are talking about. Because I think I will never have sufficient knowledge of how other people think and feel, I would always prefer to write about how I think and feel in every given situation. I believe through this, I am more able to contribute positively in a discussion rather than judging by mere presumption.

My Say 

I have been going through some personal issues related to blogging like losing my smartphone to criminal elements at the Shangrila Mall, losing our regular Internet connection due to Typhoon Glenda, and dealing with people online who are less than desirable to deal with. While the first two are physical losses that tend to affect my blogging activities, the last one tend to diminish my desire to blog. Notwithstanding, I enjoy blogging too much to give it up. 

I would like to believe that I have contributed something positive to the blogging world no matter how small. Hearing other people say that they have been touched by something I wrote fills me with so much happiness and inspiration. It just give more inspiration to write and blog.

That said, Congratulations to all the other awardees in their respective categories. Thank you to Filipino Bloggers Forum and all its members. I can never thank you enough.

This was my acceptance speech. 


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