Friday, November 25, 2016

12 Filipino brands that my family supports – part 2

This is the second of a three-part series on the Filipino products that my family supports (see the first one here).  I got the idea for this article from a Buy Pinoy assignment that I give my students: they make a list of 12 products that they currently patronize and replace them with Filipino counterparts.  After a month, they will come up with and compare-and-contrast paper about their experience.

As you can imagine with our colonial-minded brethren, my students included, there were groans and complaints about the supposed inferior quality of our products, to which I replied that (a) you can very well be wrong, and (b) with our support, they can become great.  Want examples of lowly local products that are praised worldwide, especially since we Filipinos support them so much?  San Miguel beer is lauded as one of the best beers in the world, and Emperador brandy is the world’s best-selling brandy.  Of course, I do not encourage my students to include these products as part of their assignment, and I’d like to think that there’s more to great Filipino products than alcohol; but I think they get my point.

While many students said they will never ever make the switch with some products (I understand…I love my Oreo cookies, too), by and large, they found the local products as good as their more expensive imported counterparts.  Yet many students do not use Filipino goods to the point that they do not even know what they are, and therefore had great difficulty finding 12 Filipino products.  Some even mistakenly switched a foreign brand with another foreign brand (guys, Del Monte is not a Filipino brand, neither is Safeguard).  In response to this, I made this three-part blog entry on the Filipino products that my family supports.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Tis the season for Balikbayan Boxes! Here are the best items to send, IMO.

Now that we are in the “ber months” of 2016, which here in the Philippines means that it’s the start of the longest Christmas Holiday season in the world; it also means ‘tis the season of the Balikbayan boxes coming from abroad to the motherland.  For nearly every Philippine-based family, receiving these boxes from their generous relatives abroad is a cause for celebration.  Though very much appreciated, for me, it does give me some reason to groan, unless the relatives abroad know the right things to send through Balikbayan boxes, at least my opinion of such.  Read on.

Friday, November 4, 2016

12 Filipino brands that my family supports – part 1

(Note: this is the first of a three-part series.  To see part two, click here)

To this day, one of my most commented-on and beloved articles is the Buy Pinoy experiment article made way back in 2011.  It tells of a favorite assignment I give my students, based on one of the chapters of Alex Lacson’s bestselling book (required reading in the school12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help The Country.  For a certain time (now about a month, but in the article it was just a week), my students have to list down 12 imported things that they usually patronize, and replace them with Filipino counterparts.  Read up on my students’ thoughts on this project here, the aforementioned blog post.

It’s about time for another update for that article; and this time, it’s about 12 Filipino brands or products that we personally patronize as a family.  We feel good that these products are made by Filipino hands, and the making of which brings much-needed sustenance to Filipino families.  Sadly, one of the reasons I came up with the idea for this article is that many of my students have absolutely no clue what a Filipino-made product is.  You’re probably like them, too; and so this article is for you as well.

So, here’s my 12 Filipino products or brands that my family supports:

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Batman v Superman will be awesome; but it’s even better if it’s for a cause

Excited?  I am.
Comic geek or not, just about everyone knows that certainly the biggest movie event of 2016 will be Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, coming out in just a few days!  My kids grew up on the Justice League cartoon (and this big kid watched with them), and the wait to finally see the beginnings of a live-action Justice League forming on the silver screen has been almost unbearable.

No doubt about it, watching Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will be awesome.  However, the experience will be even better if it’s for a cause.  Read on.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

My family has asthma and we find relief, naturally

Hate asthma?  Hate the drugs, too?  You might wanna read on.
Asthma can be a terrible ailment, one that is quite common here in the Philippines; so common that everyone in my 6-member household has it, sparing only me and my middle child, Mesoo.  After my very athletic youngest child recently got so sick from asthma that it reduced him to near-uselessness during a very prestigious tournament, not to mention that he had to take steroids to even breathe properly, I decided that enough is enough and sought out a way to help him (and the rest of the family).  Thing is, I am not a fan of asthma drugs (and you shouldn’t be either), so I wanted to find out how my asthmatic relatives can find relief, naturally.

One day, as I was getting stocks for the grass-fed milk that I sell, I noticed a sign of a company called Greenpastures, and, on a whim, I decided to check it out.  Boy am I glad I did, because through their product, GoProtect, I was finally able to find what I’ve been looking for: a natural weapon against asthma (and other respiratory ailments).

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

A world-renowned education personality visits, and high school students set out to impact their community

“My son told me that at The Abba’s Orchard School, they are taught to think beyond themselves.”  

That was from a conversation I had the other day with a parent in the school I work for.  She then continued: “That is what this country needs.”  I can’t help but agree wholeheartedly.

This past month was a whirlwind of activity, as a world-renowned education personality visits our Montessori school here in the Philippines, and high school students of said school set out to impact their community.  Here is a FANTASTIC video documentary that showcases both; and it is also a great showcase to what the Erdkinder adolescent program of the Abba’s Orchard School is all about.  It’s a long one (18 minutes), but you’re really, really gonna enjoy it.  A big thanks to MVP Digital Video for their masterful work.


Abba's Orchard Erdkinder from The Abba's Orchard School on Vimeo.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

The World's Toughest Job

Some of you may already have seen this, but this video is especially relevant today.  There is this group that created a fake job and posted it online and in newspapers.  Then they held real interviews…interviews for this ridiculously difficult job...the world's toughest job.

It is really worth watching, and so please do not read on until you watch the video in its entirety.  Enjoy!



Thursday, April 2, 2015

Do you want your child to BREAK FREE from boredom? Sign them up here.

Are you a parent of small children aged 4-12?  Do you sometimes have a difficult time teaching them about God and spiritual principles?  If you are like a lot of people I know, you’d probably equate the spiritual activities of your childhood with boredom, even though you know you would benefit from these.  Yet now you have kids of your own, and you hope that they will not only travel a Godly path…you also hope that they will also, somehow, enjoy it.

Well, enter a week full of fun, games, songs, snacks, and…yes, God.  The church I go to strongly believes in the importance of investing in children, and so it has an awesome children’s program called NxtGen.  Other that the great Orange program that NxtGen delivers to the kids every Sunday, the said week full of fun, generally called a DVBS, happens in the summer and it is usually NxtGen’s biggest event of the year.  This year's DVBS is themed BREAKING FREE, and I am positive your child will have a great, great time in addition to learning valuable lessons and Biblical principles.


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Pinoys, wanna help your country? Buy its products. Here's a teen that had to do so for a project.

I'm a high school Literature teacher by profession (I teach at this awesome Montessori school, here), and one of the books I have my students read is called 12 Little Things Filipino Youth Can Do To Help Our Country and a few chapters of the original book, both by Alex Lacson.

The original book.  My students do the youth version as well.
It's one of the "grow books" in the curriculum, meaning that they aren't there for literature's sake, but for personal growth.  Knowing that Filipinos are seriously lacking in love for country (until a foreigner insults us, that is), I feature Alex Lacson's work, and one of the "great work" projects is that they have to replace imported stuff that they use everyday with Filipino products for at least a month and then submit a paper afterwards.

This blog site has been up since 2011, but probably my favorite article is still the one I made that describes the BUY PINOY project (it's an oldie but very much a goodie, see it here).  This article goes back to that, but instead I am posting a submission by one of the Grade 9 students, and one of my eldest daughter's dearest friends, Maria.

The moment I saw how "blog friendly" her paper was, I immediately asked her permission to publish it.  She obliged, and here it is.  Her words are in green (the school's color) while I make some comments in black (I often make comments on my students' work).


Maria Gonzalez
Mr. Carlo
Literature
Buy Filipino Products Project

Being a Grade 9 student and finishing the book "12 little things our youth can do for our country" means we were required to do the BUY FILIPINO PRODUCTS project. This project meant that we'd choose at least 10 foreign products that we use daily and replace them with Filipino products for at least a month. Here's my list:

Friday, January 2, 2015

My New Year’s Resolution is just One Word

Happy New Year everyone!  I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Year celebration.  Ours was simple, just visiting relatives and enjoying our new toys (like our new flat screen TV that we bought during the crazy deals of the post-Christmas sales) and new additions to our household (we have a new puppy we named Frodo).

Now, everyone usually makes New Year’s Resolutions during the Holiday Season…and usually these fail even before the season is over.  Maybe the timing isn’t right.  Seriously, how can you be resolute in losing weight and getting fitter when your refrigerator is stuffed with leftovers from the holiday festivities?  Maybe another reason why these resolutions do not work is because they’re so lengthy and convoluted.  I used to list down a page’s worth of goals and resolutions for the new year, and then I found it hard to remember much of what I wrote, much less put them into practice.

Enter the One Word Movement.

The premise behind the One Word Movement is as simple as it sounds: instead of coming up with lengthy resolutions, just focus on one word, one simple word that you want your year to represent and that would exemplify your life for 2015.  For the next 12 months, you saturate yourself with that word, using it as a guide so that your life will be more purposeful and focused.  Seems better than trying to memorize a page-full of do’s and don’ts, eh?

So in 2015, my New Year’s Resolution is just One Word.  Wanna know what it is?  I chose the word AMBASSADOR.

This is based on 2 Corinthians 5:20, which says: “We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God.”

Below are the many reasons why I chose AMBASSADOR as my One Word:

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