G+ at Hump Day $50 Giveaway

It’s time for Hump Day $50 Giveaway and today’s event is for Google+ Circles. Thanks to the 27 wonderful blogs listed below, we are giving away another $50 so please feel free to visit their blogs after joining.

My Tots Exactly | Money Saving Mindy | Experience of a Super Mommy | I Heart Giveaways | Exotic Philippines | Beauty Queen Gene | WAHMaholic | Mirage | Coupon Queen of Texas | Our Food Trip | it’s not always about me | Pensive Thoughts | Happy Mothering | SWEXIE | Building Carpenters | Topics on Earth | Mom’s Ups and Downs| Frugal Experiments | Kenzie’s Kozies | Pinay Mama | Fabulicious Diva | It’s all about Me | My Tummy Calls | The Blogger Hub | Travel Unravels |

NEW: After entering the mandatory entries, you will be taken to a separate page to add the 25 other sponsors’ page on to your Google+ Circles. Please completely ADD ALL 25 on the separate page to be eligible for the 25 points. All the sponsors will verify your entry and if you miss to follow one, your 25-point entry will be disqualified. After adding all 25 entries to your Google+ Circles, come back to the blog page you first entered on to complete the rest of the Rafflecopter tasks. For a short tutorial on how to Follow via GFC or to Add pages to your Google+ Circles, click here.

A note though: You can only join this on one blog/page. There will be a maximum of 32 entries ONLY. If you have more than 32, I reserve the right to delete duplicate or fraudulent entries. May I request that you use only one name and email address for quicker validation of entries.

On the first mandatory entry, please do not forget to write Mom’s Ups and Downs referred you since it is a mandatory entry. You must complete the first 2 tasks before the others are enabled, and for all your other entries to count.

Thank you very much and good luck. By joining this giveaway, you agree to the Terms and Conditions on the bottom of the form. Contest is open all-day Wednesday, from February 29th, 12:01am EST to February 29th,11:59pm EST (February 29th, 1:01pm Philippine time to March 1st, 12:59pm Philippine time).

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All Our Bags are Packed and We’re Ready to Go

I can’t hide my excitement on our most-awaited vacation.  We will leave on Friday (hope it is sunny by then) but as early as yesterday all our bags are packed and we are ready to go. We are just waiting for Friday to come. I maybe packed things too early but because I have a child, I don’t want to miss anything important most especially her medications.

Whether we are having our vacation in the suburb or to another city, it’s a big family acitvity that requires a whole lot of packing. Aside of course from our needed clothes I see to it that we also have other essentials such as first-aid kit including medications, toiletries, ziplock bags, sunblock,  important accessories (caps/hats, sunglasses, slippers), light weight sweaters/jackets, cellphones, chargers, camera, extra duracell procell batteries, credit cards, a list of emergency phone numbers, snacks,  and last but not the least cash. Lot of things that made my packing look so stressful but because I always make my list ahead, everything turned out easy. Still, I made sure that we can lift and carry our bags with ease.

It is important to travel light so pack only the things you need. If you have baby or toddlers, here’s the list that you might want to consider:

Needed clothes
Bottles or sippy cups
Sneakers/play shoes
Formula
Distilled or purified water
Baby food and snacks
Pacifiers
Bibs
Diapers
Wipes
Changing pads
Waterproof sheets
Diaper ointment
Medicine for fever, allergies, cough and colds
Thermometer
Blanket
Sweaters
Few toys
Coloring books
Crayons
Favorite stuffed animal

Weird Summer

It’s raining cats and dogs when we got up this morning. As per weather forecast there will be scattered rain showers and thurderstorms til Thursday. So unusual because summer here in the Philippines starts in late February or early March but it looks like we are going to experience a rainy summer this year which means more flooding in most parts of Metro Manila. Hmmm…should I buy breeches or knee-length pants now in preparation for the flood?

According to Scientists, these climate change and extreme weather conditions are all due to global warming and if we don’t do our part these extremes could eventually grow to severe thus more floods, more heat waves and more droughts will be experienced.

A rainy summer? It would be the weirdest summer we would have here if ever. Kids can’t play outside while they are on vacation and they can’t enjoy the beaches. Weird!

What is Cord Blood Banking and How It is Done

When I first heard about cord blood banking, my first question is “What is it for?”, then I found out that Cord blood promises to basically change the way we cure deadly complications and illnesses. If you have no idea yet what cord blood banking is, below are FAQ’s on CordLife…

 1. What is cord blood banking?

–          Cord blood banking involves the process of storing stem cells – agent responsible for replenishing the blood and immune system – collected from the umbilical cord immediately after birth. The stem cells have the ability to develop into new and healthy red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.

 2. What is the difference between private cord blood banking and public cord blood banking?

–          Private cord blood banking is storing the baby’s cord blood for his or her own future use or use by a family member should the need arise. Alternatively, public cord blood banking involves donating a baby’s cord blood for potential use by a patient at large in need. When a family donates their child’s cord blood, they are relinquishing all their rights to own these cells.

 3. How is cord blood banking done?

–          Cord blood is collected after the baby is born and the umbilical cord has been clamped and cut. Once it has been collected, the cord blood is transported to a cord blood processing and cryopreservation facility for specialized handling. Stem cells will be extracted from cord blood using the world’s first and only fully automated cord blood processing system, Sepax ®, followed by a step to gradually freeze down the stem cells before they are finally stored in a liquid nitrogen tank at -196°C permanently.

 4. Does cord blood banking pose any risk to the mother or to the baby?

–          No, because the cord blood is collected after the baby is born and the umbilical cord is clamped and cut. The collection is painless, easy, and safe for both the mother and the baby.

 5. What diseases can be treated with cord blood?

–          Stem cells have been proven to successfully treat diseases including cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma, neuroblastoma, blood disorders such as thalassaemia as well as immune deficiencies and metabolic disorders.

 6. How can cord blood be useful for the family?

–          Researchers say stem cells from cord blood may be used to treat diseases of the family members since the chance of locating a cord blood match within the family is 60 percent higher than a bone marrow match, includes fewer complications, and has improved medical outcomes.

 7. Must siblings have the same blood type in order for cord blood to be used by any of them?

–          No, Human Leukocyte Antigens (HLA) or tissue matching is used to determine donor and recipient compatibility – and it is irrespective of blood types.

 8. Is cord blood banking available in the Philippines?

–          Cord blood banking is available at CordLife, the Philippines’ first world-class cord blood processing and storage facility which is located at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub Diliman, Q.C. Meanwhile, stem cell transplants are performed in The National Kidney and Transplant Institute, St. Luke’s Medical Center, Asian Hospital and Medical Center. These hospitals have the necessary facilities and expertise of medical practitioners to perform cord blood banking transplants.

 9.  How long can cord blood be stored?

–          Research shows that cord blood stem cells can be stored indefinitely as long as they are continuously stored in liquid nitrogen. With the required temperature, the stem cells will not lose its viability or biological activity.

Now, will you consider banking your children’s cord blood?

Our First Family Camping

We had our family day once again at Quezon Memorial Circle but this time it was different. We brought not ony a picnic mat but in addition we also had a tent with us. It was our very first camping and RJ was filled with excitement. She did not only enjoy, she also learned that there are lots of things she can do that do not require electricy. It was an awesome day without computer, video games and television.

child and musicThe first time campers…

child and musicHubby and RJ while sleeping…savoring the fresh air.

child and musicCamping is not complete without picnic.

Camping is one of the most affordable family activities. It could be a car camping, canoe camping or backpacking. But most camping family starts out doing what we call tent camping. Here in Metro Manila I know only two areas where you could camp out…at Quezon Memorial Circle (for day camping only) and La Mesa Eco Park (for overnight camping).

Why not take your family to camping now? It is a wonderful way to build a closer connection amongst parents and kids plus, your kids can get truly close to nature…something that is often difficult when living in the city.