UAE School Hunting

For the past few weeks, we have been preparing for our “big move” to Dubai to be with my husband. We have been praying for our family to be together and we are glad that God is slowly showing us a preview to soon be answered prayer.

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photo from


Part of this preparation is hunting for a preschool for our eldest Zoe. I have been thankful that I have access to internet since most schools in the UAE has its website. Also, KHDA’s (Knowledge & Human Dev’t Authority) 2014 school ranking is really of big help. As expected, tuition fees are expensive and I didn’t expect that school registration starts very early.

Currently, I have been on a virtual tour to some school with in our budget.

United International Private School – This was our first choice since this school offers Philippine Curriculum. Hubby visited the school only to find out that there is a long waiting list for registration. It’s under “acceptable” ranking on KHDA and serves mostly Filipino Families.

The Winsmenster School – Al Ghusais – is our second choice. Under “acceptable” ranking on KHDA and following a UK curriculum. The tuition fee for Foundation Stage is DHS 5,651 (SY 2014-2015). I am not sure if books & uniform is already covered, but school service is not included. This is so far the cheapest Gems school that offers UK
curriculum, and we’re sad knowing that registration is also close.

Gems Winchester - Oud Metha – also under “acceptable” ranking and UK curriculum. The Tuition fee is DHS 9,540 (SY 2014-15). School service fee is not included. A little bit hesitant with this school due to its location.

Apple International School – Al Ghusais – I have been reading negative reviews about this school. Though I have friends who are satisfied with the quality of education they offer. Since it’s only a few minutes drive from our soon to be crib, this school is in our list. Ranks “acceptable”and also following UK curriculum. Tuition fee ranges from DHS 5,963 to 10,951.

Pristine Private School – Al nahda – So far the closest to our place. Under “good” ranking on KHDA and following UK curriculum, so we are making this our first choice for now. Plus, I found a fellow mom blogger over the net who was happy with her son development with PPS. Tuition fee for FS1 is 8,469 and FS2 is 8,994.

Scouting for inexpensive but good quality school in UAE can be a muddle task. If you have toddlers going to school for the first time, make sure you scout early as school registrations filled up fast.

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Posted in Baby z, expat life, Mommy Talk

Am I A Monster Mom?

Watching our children growing is undeniably one of the best thing parents loves to do. Having two toddlers at home, seeing the happy moments up to their melt downs, are both heartwarming and disheartening.

Over the time I have been filled with both heartwarming and disheartening moments from our two boys. How I wish it could only be heartwarming moments, but you know, disheartening moments are inevitable and it often happens in our house now but not for a long time as I remember. Rumblings, fighting up to melt down, has been a common scenario. And so, I thought that our parenting style should be changed.

Early in my parenting journey, I don’t want to enforce spanking. I was the type of mom, who lose heart when spanking. But with the negative behavior they’re currently showing I felt the need to discipline them. I was able to get hold a copy of a parenting video held in our church. It has taught me a lot about parenting. One thing that I noted, which our pastor shared, was that spanking as a way of discipline is biblical.

Proverbs 13;24 “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.”

This helped me to have courage in enforcing spanking to my children. In that video it also teaches parents when & how to spank. I followed their teaching, I have set rules when to spank. My children knew that they’ll get spanked whenever they disobeyed and disrespect anyone in the house. Hitting, pinching and yelling is also a no no…I also explain to them why they’re being spanked once their bawling subside. One important rule to remember, is never ever spank in public. Do not embarrass them in public. I bring them to a private room whenever I have to spank.

And how it impacts the kids? I saw them improve and they have been watchful about their behavior during the first three months of rule implementation. But as time goes, it seems that they’re not afraid of spanking anymore especially our youngest Zian. So I have to make spanking a little harder for them to feel the pain, but I make sure it won’t break their skin. And because of that I was then labeled by my eldest as “monster mom”….Oh…and it hit me. It may be painful for them for now but, Hebrews 12:11 says For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

I maybe a monster mom to them, but the bible says it clearly, discipline maybe painful now but, it bears a good fruit. I can sometimes be a monster mom but, I am praying to be more and more patient  and and avoid spanking. And also encouraging the boys to always be good to each other so we can avoid spanking.

Proverbs 25:15 “With patience a ruler may be persuaded, and a soft tongue will break a bone.” 

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I am not a perfect mom, but I am trying to give my best is parenting my kids. Proverbs 22:6  Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

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The Lord is Good

At this time, I hardly get the kids to pray before sleeping and so, I thought of doing memory verses with our eldest Zoe as another way of introducing God to our little ones. I was glad he was okay with it, except that I have to bribe him with a prize in order for him to properly recite the verse.

We started with 4-6 sentences verses to make it light for him. I picked out Psalm 145:9 The Lord is good to all! as his first memory verse. Our youngest Zian, who is only 2 years old also tried to memorize the verse in his own little “language”.

God by nature is good and the evidence of his goodness is evident in His creation and triumphs. And although we are not worthy of his goodness, He made it available for us regardless of our status in life. James 1:17 says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

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Posted in Baby z, Mommy Talk

Hillsong Worship|No Other Name Concert in Manila 2015

Did you missed last year’s Hillsong United concert? Ticket was quickly sold out and they had to open another night for their Zion album tour concert here in the Philippines. This year, don’t dare miss it again, as the Hillsong Worship will once again visit the Philippines this coming April 10 for “No Other Name” album tour. This time they will be leading the worship at the Mall of Asia Arena, at  8:00 in the evening.

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photo from Becca Music Phil

I just got our ticket for this awesome worship event. I just love worshiping our God with this people, this is my fourth Hillsong Worship experience and I thank God for this opportunity. Hoping for another meaningful and uplifting worship experience.

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Go grab your tickets now! They are available in all sm ticket net and Becca Music Phils office.

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Gratitude Journal for 2015

Happy New Year Everyone!

I am hoping and trusting that everyone will have a fruitful year ahead. Setting up few goals for this year for me and my family, one of which is to increase my drive to self improvement both at work and as a mom & wife. I have also decided to boldly count my blessings this year and so I am turning my SB Planner to a Gratitude Journal to archive every thing that I am thankful for.

So, how do you see 2015? Have you got your list of goals for the new year?


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Sixth and Counting.

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Six years ago, I took Mr. Z to be my partner for life and promised to give him my heart and walk with him hand in hand living, learning and growing in love together. I am so glad that we are celebrating our sixth years wedding anniversary and what makes it more special is that he is here with me to celebrate this memorable occassion. He works overseas that’s why being home for our sixth is such a big deal.

The past six years may not be a bed of roses, but I am glad that we have passed through rocks together. I know there are more to come, and I pray that as we sail through and learn life better our love triangle with the Lord will grow deeper. Happy 6th!

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Posted in Big Z, family, Uncategorized

Zoe’s 4th Birthday | A Bet on Your Baby Experience

Zoe has been telling me he wanted to celebrate his 4th birthday at Bet on Your Baby (a cute-kiddie game show aired on channel 2). So I did a researched and found out about their birthday club and although it was not totally intentional, I emailed Zoe’s picture. After two days I received an email from them, asking for my son’s details and was told to just wait for instruction. And just before I forget about the first email, I received an invite to the December Birthday Club Party at ELJ Center via email. The said event falls exactly on Zoe’s birthday and so, his wish of celebrating his birthday at Bet on Your Baby will finally come true.

On his birthday, we have to pull him out of his class early so we won’t be late for the event. So after a simple Birthday treat for his classmates and after picking some stuff at home, me, hubby and Zoe went  straight to ELJ Center. When we arrived, we saw a couple of families also waiting for the said event.

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There are total of 20 kids who luckily passed the screening and became a member of The Bet on Your Baby Birthday Club and fortunately they were the first batch of the club to which Ms Judy Ann Santos-Agoncillo and the BOYB Staff are throwing a party.

There were fun games and treats for the December Babies prepared by BOYB  and all 20 of them  had  met and bond with the award winning host Judy Ann Santos Agoncillo at the Baby Dome where they had fun.

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Photo grabbed from BOYB FB Page

The party won’t be complete without the traditional blowing of candles. All 20 kids has a mini cake to blow…and the fun…fun…fun continues…

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Photo Grabbed from BOYB FB Page

It was a fun filled day for all the celebrants, and of course a fun-memorable experience for my little tot. He really enjoyed his Big Day! Thank you so much Bet on your baby for that wonderful experience and for the gifts too…

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Finally took the boys for a new do. I would not done these had I not noticed Zian’s hair was trimmed and found out it was the yaya who willfully did the trimming. “Mahaba na daw kasi”. And so, here are the tot’s hair cut bonding moment.

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I’m glad that Zoe was friendly to kuya barbero this time. He use to be cranky before but this time he opened up a conversation by the telling kuya barbero that his birthday is coming very soon. Hahaha!

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And the little pre schooler ranked third

Had I not checked Zoe’s assignment notebook “early” today I would not know that it was distribution of their grades today from 8:00-10:00AM. Good thing his school is just 10 minutes walk away from our place.

And here comes the surprise!

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Our son ranked third in the whole nursery level. I didn’t expect that he would get the third spot since he only ranked seventh in the first quarter. That seventh place challenged me to give more time on Zoe’s studies so he could maintain his grades. But being a working mom, I hardly get a time to teach him, only during periodical exam. And so I am very happy and proud of this achievement. For despite my shortcoming, he improved and got the third spot. Thank you to my sister Aina and our yayabel ate mariet for helping Zoe with his assignment when I wasn’t able. Above all I am thanking God for blessing our son Zoe with intelligence.

Congratulation Zoe and thank you Lord God!

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The little Japanese

United Nations is celebrated on October and Dee Hwa Leong Academy just celebrated it last friday.

Zoe was a Japanesse kid. This was remarkable for me, since this is the first school activity that I get him to dance on the stage for their class presentation without a fuss. There were two major school activity that the little pre schooler did not went up the stage for their class presentation. That’s why I was happy this time seeing him excited for their presentation.

I took a video of the dance presentation however the file is huge and I am having a hard time uploading it in any social media & storage site so I will not be able to share it here.

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My little Japanese with the little bro.

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