Archive for the ‘How To’ Category

Hi Folks! Since Edward is a big fan of Disney Cars, I’ve layout a memory game for him. Instead of buying a set for 199 in Toy Kingdom, I chose his favorite characters and printed out our own set. We’ve pasted on a cereal box and we are ready to go!

Cars1 Cars2

You can customize your own by using the file below. I got the pictures from Takara Tomy

Cars Memory Game


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[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] I’ve decided to write down the things I’ve learned through out my experience as a new mom for those newbie like me who have absolutely no idea what to expect in motherhood.

As a background, I didn’t go through the labor pains, my baby was prematured – 35 weeks and I had to go through a C-section to avoid risking the life of my son and me. I have to leave my baby in the hospital until he’s ready to face to world.

Coping Up

  • You would have a limitation – no matter how strong willed you are, your body would be adopting to changes. I delivered my baby on May 30 and I tried to be as normal as possible. It’s my day 5 now but still there’s a lot of things I can’t do since my body gets tired easily.
  • Try to get a helper/yaya as early as you can. Newly weds might have a hard time to adjust to the changes. Since you have body limitations, you can’t do much of the chores. You can’t exert much effort or bend down much.
  • You’ll need to clear you bladder as much as you can so whenever you see a comfort room try peeing. It would reduce the pain while walking. If you are having a hard time peeing, you would need to stimulate it, hence open the faucet.
  • Breastfeeding process takes a long time. I was advised by my doctor to express milk every 2 hours during the day and every 4 hours during the night, 10 minutes for each breasts. Since I bought a single pump, it would take at least 30 minutes for each session. Electric pumps are better than manual since you would be tired if you keep on pumping. I bought Pigeon brand. I heard that Avent is not a bit heavy duty since it automatically turns off every 15 minutes. Medela are used for heavy duty pumping but it’s a bit costly.
  • Malunggay capsules and Lapu-Lapu can help provide more milk
  • You won’t have milk at the start, you need your baby’s help to stimulate the breast until you are able to produce milk. The baby would suck on your breast even if you don’t have milk yet. One of the quick signs that you have milk already is when your breast starts to be heavy.
  • Extract as many milk as you can or else it would be painful to sleep as the breast is super firm.
  • Have a Nipple Protector ready. You’ll be surprised at how helpful it was. The purpose of this? Well, new mom won’t have ready nipples yet. Meaning, they are not as erect as they are supposed to be. Given that, the baby would have a hard time sucking. But with this product, the baby is able to suck even if the nipple is not yet ready. I bought Avent but it’s a bit big for my baby, so try looking for other brands that caters for new born baby.
  • If you know anyone who has recently given birth or can generate excess breast milk, contract that person to donate breast milk for you, especially since you won’t have milk until the 3rd/4th day depending on how good your baby is.
  • Firm breast doesn’t mean it has milk. It means there’s a lot of milk not yet extracted. So better extract it immediately or else it would be painful and you would have to press on it for it to be extracted. Even if the breast is not firm, it can generate milk.
  • You are not to extract the milk to the last drop. The maximum time of extraction per breast is 20 minutes per session. No matter how pressured you are to produce more, don’t over go this limit.


  • Avent bottles are super expensive so better think twice before purchasing especially if you’re on a budget. Buying in Singapore is way cheaper. I got mine for 3,625 pesos. 6 pcs 9 oz bottles. In Makati Med it cost 2K+ per 2 bottles.

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[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] Honestly, I was a bit surprised on how fast and efficient the process for getting a NBI clearance was. Before going to the actual place, a few researches help.

Reference: NBI Website – please note that the steps in the “Steps for Applying” and “FAQs” don’t match. The steps for applying is fairly represented by the FAQ section. I’ll try to add more inputs from my personal experience.

What to Bring: 2 valid IDs – no need to photocopy; ballpen – they are selling pens for 10 Php if you forgot to bring yours; wet wipes – to clean your fingers after the fingerprinting – they are selling wet tissues for 2 Php; 115 Php – exact (1-100 peso bill, 3-5 peso coins)

How to Get There: The easiest way is to take the LRT and get off at Monumento station. I came from Bambang to Monumento, from the exit, turn right and keep on walking until you find the pedestrian lane. Cross the street and you would see the Victory Central Mall. The NBI clearance is located at the 5th floor.

Step 1
– Present your 2 IDs to the guard to get your application form. Fill it up and have it checked at the Data Check counter. They would need to stamp the application form once everything is okay. You need to indicate the 2 ID numbers in the form, top middle of page 2.

Step 2 Payment. This is where the exact money would come in handy, they have automated machine where there’s no line. You would be done in 5 minutes. The instructions are shown in the screen. You would be asked if it’s local or abroad and then you can choose whether English or Tagalog. After which, it would ask you to insert the money. And you’ll get a receipt. Write your name in the receipt. Copy the OR number in the OR number field of the application form and for the Reg Number indicate it in the Sundry portion of the application form. 

Step 3 – Fingerprinting. There would be a personnel who would help you in the finger printing. This step is a bit messy since they would finger print all your fingers in both hands.

Step 4 – Image Capture. In this step, they would simply take your picture. Just show the personnel the OR and the application form.

Step 5 – Data Entry. This step would determine your fate if you can get the clearance within the same day or not. If you have a common name, like me, chances are you would get a hit. If that is the case, you would have to go back on the date indicated in the receipt and proceed to the releasing window for records with hit. This is located outside the application steps. After this step, you will only have the receipt left.

Step 6 – Releasing. If you don’t have a hit, you can proceed to the releasing counter and wait until they print out your clearance.

This morning, it took us 30 minutes to complete all steps. The biggest contributor to this success is the usage of automated machine for the payment. The line for payment was really long. I’ll have to wait and see if the releasing is as promising. I was really satisfied with the service.

One shocking discovery, they have break time around 9 AM in the data entry. I mean, the work is supposed to start at 8 right, yet there’s already a break time at 9 AM.

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How to Setup Shoe-Rack

[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] Setting up a new house has its own advantages. Today, I’ve setup our expandable shoe-rack. This shoe-rack was given by Kalvin’s family. And it was so easy to assemble the rack. This time around there was no instruction guide but a picture on what items are available and how to built it was shown. This way anyone can set it up. It took me 10 minutes or so to complete the shoe rack.

Step 1: Insert the base cap and the top cap in the stand.

Step 2: Screw 2 bars to one side of the stand. You may tighten the screw upon securing the place of the bars.

Step 3: Secure the other end of the bar to the other stand. And tighten screws.

Step 4: Voila! Here’s your shoe rack. Adjust the length of the rack to desired.

This one is really easy to do. Upon trying out the new shoe rack, we discovered that slippers and flat surface shoes slips. Now the bigger problem. How do we keep it from slipping… hmmm… I’ll let you know when I figure it out.

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[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] They say there’s a first time for everything and I indeed experience one recently. I’ve assembled my first stand fan. While cleaning up in our new house, Kalvin brought a stand fan box that he intended to set up. He asked if I knew how, I didn’t. He said, it’s time you learn. Being a fan of assembling things and figuring out how things work, I enjoyed setting up the fan.

Since it was absolutely my first time, I have to rely on the instructions and picture guide. It was not enough, so I’ve decided to share my learning experience in setting up my first stand fan.

There are four parts in a stand fan (as per packaged). Please note that the blades are detachable. To name the four parts from left to right (1) Blades and cover (2) Stand (3) Base (4) Motor. The naming convention of course is not the normal way to call them. Since I’m not familiar with the real name of the parts. I’ll be using these names as I instruct on how to assemble the fan.

Step 1: Flip the base and remove the screws.

Step 2: Lift the plastic portion in the stand. Align the stand with the base and screw it firmly. It’s a bit challenging to do this step. Try to secure the base and the stand position. It would help if you would screw in X order. So that, somehow the stand is already affixed. After fixing the screw, secure the plastic to the base to cover the screws.

Step 3: Pull the silver tube in the base, you would need it in order to attach the motor to the stand. If you won’t pull the silver tube, you won’t be able to fit the motor. It’s a bit tough to pull the tube. Initially, I was having a hard time figuring out how to fit the motor to the stand. This stand would also help adjust the height of the fan. You can pull it up if you want it to be higher and push down if you want it to be lower. After knowing the desired height, secure the position by turning the knob tightly. This would be the lock.

Step 4: Attach the motor to the stand and lock the motor by turning the knob in the motor. Unscrew the 2 locks in front, so that you would be able to place the cover and the blades in order and secure it properly with the locks. The order would be from the motor, we would have the back cover, after which a lock,  the blades, another lock and then the front cover. Ensure to secure the locks of the front cover firmly. The back cover would have holes for you to fit comfortably in the motor.

After following the steps… Tada, here’s your stand fan. 🙂

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[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] It’s fairly easy to apply for a marriage license in the city of Manila. It even gets easier when the couple is older. There are lesser requirements. For 28 years old, we are only required to attend 1 seminar regarding family planning. As for the requirements? (1) NSO Birth Certificate (2) 1 Valid ID and xerox copy of the ID

For the process, it was easy. I’ll lay it down for easy reference

1. Around 8 AM – visit the Manila City Hall Civil Registry to get an application form. You have to fill up the application letter twice, as there’s no carbonated forms. Kalvin visited City Hall earlier to get the form and pay for the fee of 120 Php. You can also do that so that you can fill up the forms at home. Ensure that the details filled up in the form coincidence with that of the birth certificate including parents nationality.

2. At 8:30 AM – proceed to Room 128 for the seminar. You would need to proceed to the mezzanine in the room for the actual seminar. You would be required to present the application form, receipt for 120 Php and they would provide a new form with control number per couple. You need to write twice also… no carbonated forms. You would also need to sign 2 folders. (1) Couple signature and address is necessary. (2) You need to disclose the type of contraceptives you are using. 2 folders for this, one for male and another for female.

3. At 9 AM – the seminar will start with a film showing. (1) Importance of letting a baby grow in a healthy environment. For the faint hearted, please note that there are some gory images in the video showing: actual labor via normal delivery. There was no warning, they focused the camera on the female thing immediately,  it was disgusting that I almost fainted. (2) Abortion – I was able to view this during high school. It showed the ultrasound of the baby while undergoing abortion. This is also disgusting. After the film showing, I can’t feel my legs anymore.

A counselor talked after the film showing, giving tips on how to have a happy marriage. Some of the stuffs discussed are printed in the tarp.

4. Around 9:30 AM – you need to go back to the Civil Registry to submit the forms. An employee would be checking the details of the application form. After which, you would be sent to Mrs. Dela Cruz in the admin for the oath-taking. You need to take an oath for the information you have indicated in the forms.

After the oath, you are done! 10 days processing and you will receive the marriage license for you to sign in the church during the actual wedding.

Tips to make the trip easier:

1. Ask for directions on how to locate Rm 128. It’s in the farthest area. From the entrance, go straight second to the last entrance turn right and go all the way to the back of the building.

2. If you find a comfort room, try using it, there are a few comfort room in the location. It’s a bit far from the seminar room.

3. There’s no waiting area. To kill time, you may stay at the bureau of permit area. They have aircon, TV and chairs. It’s located across the wing.

4. Despite the instruction saying the registration is opened at 8AM, outside the door, it’s indicated it would start at 8:30 AM.

Happy marriage license applying couples!

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[tweetmeme source=”ibethyap”] I was utterly disappointed with my experience in the passport renewal in DFA. Maybe I was expecting too much as many people said that it was super easy. Then I found out the difference, they processed it via a travel agency. While me, I have to tolerate the process all by myself. People who have intention to urgently travel would definitely have a hard time getting their passports ready on time.

The Pros:

  • Online scheduling is fast, it was easy to apply and select the desired timing online.
  • The requirements for passport renewal is fairly simple. For me, I only provided the photocopy of some pages in my passport. That’s it.
  • There are only 3 steps to process passport renewal. Step 1: Line up for document processing. Mind you, the documents have to be validated first before you can line up. Step 2: Pay for the passport fees. 950 for regular and 1200 for express. The schedule on when you would be able to receive the passport is shown in the window of Step 1 counters. Normally, 2 weeks processing and another 2 weeks difference for regular and express. Step 3: Passport encoding. This is where your picture and fingerprint would be taken.
  • The tarps relating the steps are helpful. At least I didn’t get lost inside.
  • The Step 2 – payment was super fast. How I wish Step 1 and 3 would be fast as well.

The Cons:

  • The earliest available time for an appointment is normally 3-4 weeks away. Bear in mind that if the situation requires an urgent schedule, don’t try using the online scheduling.
  • Even if you would enter the information via the website, a lot of the information won’t reflect in the form, hence you have to manually input the required info.
  • The waiting time is too long. The appointment schedule doesn’t guarantee you would be served at the alloted timing. You can enter the premises even if you are more than 30 minutes earlier
  • There were about 22 counters in Step 1 but only 14 were functioning. The other counters doesn’t have a personnel to assist us.
  • They have a screen to show which number they are already serving in Step 3. But the screen is not visible to all. It’s hard to find a seat where the numbers are visible.


  • Try processing your documents via a travel agency. They have a special path where you don’t have to line up anymore. The waiting time is too much. My schedule was 11 AM. I was there at 10:30 AM but I completed processing around 3 PM.
  • The “not letting you in” policy unless it’s 30 minutes before your schedule is not true. I was there at exactly 10:30 AM and when I enter the premise, there was a long line for the 11 AM schedule already.
  • Try bringing something that can help you kill time. You would really need it.
  • Use the passport delivery service, for 120 Php per passport, you won’t have to go through the lining up process for the passport pickup. While you are waiting for Step 3. Validate the address where the passport would be sent. So that after Step 3. You are done.
  • Don’t wear any earrings. It’s not allowed for the passport encoding. For the shirt, I think the collared shirt is not strictly implemented already. A lot were not wearing shirts with collar.

Although, it seems that we’re starting to go high-tech. There’s still a long way to go for DFA. I’m happy and proud that there are improvements. Happy passport renewal to my fellow Filipinos.

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