Tales of a Commuter: A Day in the Life

People close to me knows that I prefer commuting to work rather than drive. I’ve spent some number of years driving to and from work but it eventually got the better of me especially with the daily EDSA traffic ranging from bad to forever. I’m an advocate of commuting mainly due to more personal benefits:

  1. It allows me to work while in transit (read my e-mails and join conference calls) which is one thing that I can’t do if I drive (yes I can join calls but it gets distracting)
  2. I get some form of exercise. For someone who spend long hours sitting in front of a desk, going up and down the MRT stairs is the closest I can get to a cardio routine.
  3. One less car to add to EDSA traffic
  4. Less pollution
  5. More time for Kdrama, Jdorama and “research”

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Chronicles of a Work at Home Mom

Okay, so technically I’m not really a work at home mom. Not permanently anyways. Every once in a while, my mom would go home to the province and I would have to ask permission from my ever understanding boss (oh, hi boss!) to work from home since we don’t have a nanny. These are the days I enjoy the most – being able to spend the whole day with Yui and feel like a traditional housewife. But with the added pressure of work and colleagues pinging me every now and then. Hence, the work at home mom.

I don’t know what about it this time though because only 2 days in and I feel like crashing. With an upcoming major Production deployment on Friday, office budget woes, resources on emergency leaves and Yui’s advance finals next week, it has just been a whirlwind of activities! But instead of ranting about how hectic it has been for the past 2 days and I can only imagine for the next 3 days as well, I would like to focus on what makes this setup extra special and why I would pick this over anything else right now.

Basically, my life this week can be summed up into these things:

All set: lappy, headset, reviewers

All set: lappy, headset, reviewers

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The Last (wo)Man Standing

“The only thing constant is CHANGE.”

I always believed in this saying and this helped me a lot in coping with life changes. For the coming months, I have yet to adapt to another change. Having been with the company for more than 9 years and having stayed in the same project for that period, I was able to build friendships and close relationships with my colleagues. I’m used to people leaving – either by resigning or by rolling off to a different project. But not with people close to me.

For the past several years, I’ve seen some of my friends leave this project, mostly leaving the company for good. Last year, one of my closest friends was rolled off. It was challenging at first, not just work-wise but also in sustaining our friendship. We had to fit in lunch or dinner into our differing schedules. It was difficult but we started to get used to it and move on with our lives.

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Frantic Feedback

The last month has been a pity. One blog post. Nothing else. Although my blog life was severely in drought, real life was something else.

Weekdays have been 16 average hours in the office and weekdays were quality time with the family. There are a lot of blog-worthy experiences and places I’d like to share in my blog but the farthest they reached was on my to-do list.

April is one of the busiest months at work as it is our performance feedback season. This year the deadlines were so tight so I had to make ends meet to finish the 28 feedback requests I received from my team. And this is on top of my normal work. I spent zombie nights working/sleeping/eating in the kitchen just to finish all those feedback. It was painful work but the importance of it pushed me to the finish line. Buzzer beater. But at least it’s done! 🙂

Now that it’s over and a new month is in, I’m back with a vengeance! This is my month. So I’m gonna make it count. 🙂

I’ll start with the life lessons I’ve learned from all those frantic feedback nights.

Life is good

Life is good. Leave your worries behind.

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Work Life Balance

My top career priority ever since I had a family has always been work-life balance. So I take every opportunity I have to take some time off from work. Late last year up until the end of January, I’ve been very busy at work preparing our team for a huge company-wide audit interview. I’ve been coming home late and promised myself that once this audit is complete I would go on leave. Which is precisely what I did.

Last week, my mom went on a week-long Singapore trip to visit my brother so I had to work from home since no one will babysit Yui. Despite the hectic schedule of attending meetings, cooking lunch and dinner, bathing Yui and putting her to sleep in the afternoons before going back to meetings, it was really fun and fulfilling! I took Thursday and Friday off to concentrate on looking after Yui and to have some QT (quality time) together. 😉

Because daddy bunny had to report to work, it was a two-day mother daughter bonding session. We started our Valentine’s Day by going to the mall as we needed to buy new formal shoes for Yui. When she was smaller, she hated getting new shoes since she insisted that she still has (those she was wearing) but now that she’s growing up to be a kikay girl, she enjoyed shopping already. Good luck to daddy! Haha!

Little fashionista trying on the pink and yellow shoes.

Little fashionista trying on the pink and yellow shoes.

Good thing she just tried those shoes on but didn’t insist on buying them. We got the formal shoes and that’s it. Yay for daddy!

We had to cut our mall tour short to attend her 1PM class and the birthday celebration of her classmate. It’s been a long time since I went with her to school and it was so much fun celebrating a birthday, catching up with other moms and watching the kids play and shriek to their delight!

Playtime at the Home Room

Playtime at the Home Room

Daddy bunny planned to take Friday off but had to attend a very important meeting that day so it was Yui and mommy once again. This time we spent a quick playtime at the Quezon City Memorial Circle. Within an hour, we were able to ride the go kart, some arcade rides and play at the fountain area. I’m really thankful that there’s a place we can bring Yui to play around – with very wide space, lots of trees, a huge playground and DIRTY ICE CREAM! 🙂

Go Kart: 15 minutes of fun

Go Kart: 15 minutes of fun

Little Driver

Little Driver

Simple Joys: Buko Shake and Dirty Ice Cream

Simple Joys: Buko Shake and Dirty Ice Cream

The nice sunset caps off my week perfectly. It was one of those times where you don’t have to spend a lot and go somewhere far to have fun. As long as I have an active and happy kid with me, I’m good. 🙂

Sunset at QC Circle

Sunset at QC Circle

Looking forward to my next time off!



A New Beginning

In my company, we usually greet each other “Happy New Year” in September because it is the start of another fiscal year. This year, I’ve received good news to start the new fiscal year. The kind of good news that will make you pull your hair out and pant like crazy to catch up with all the tasks yet will also make you feel good and appreciated.

Career Ladder

credits from google images

There are a lot of images depicting someone rising in the corporate ladder but I picked this one because I believe that one needs help in getting up. People who will help you get to where you want to be and those that will ensure you get there despite all challenges.

Weeks prior to the announcement, I was given another role on top of what I’m currently doing. To say that it rocked my world is an understatement. I have to learn the ropes of different teams and immerse myself in an already stable and tight group. Luckily for me, I have a great working relationship with my counterpart and I’m thankful that with all the issues that we’ve faced these past few days, we can talk and resolve the issues calmly. Our teamwork will be tested once again and our journey is just starting. Again.


credits: 123greetings.com

Stress levels are starting to shoot up but this will all pass with a great team, awesome friends and endless chikahan. A new beginning in an old environment. Challenge accepted. 🙂

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban

I’ve been travelling to Cebu for work for more than 2 years now and I always look forward to my trips. Apart from being able to visit different beach resorts such as in Camotes and Sumilon, I find the work environment more laid back compared to Manila. Despite business and I.T. parks booming within the city, there’s still this rural feel. For this week’s photo challenge, they described Urban photography as something about documenting urban living space and how people adapt their environment to certain needs and vice versa.

I initially thought of featuring our home, it being at the heart of Quezon City’s entertainment district, but decided to feature the city that I is close to my heart.

As I said, I still feel that I’m in the province whenever I visit Cebu even if there are a lot of malls, restaurants and business districts that  closely resembles it to Metro Manila. It is one of the factors that still draws me every time. This shot was taken while we were on a “city tour” with my team mates. The rural feel to this is apparent to the old buildings and trucks and jeepneys on the road. There’s no fancy SUVs. No high rise buildings.

To Mandaue City

One of our offices is located at the Cebu Business Park and the buildings blend gracefully with the grass and trees. Walking from the hotel to the office is such as breeze when you have a view like this.

Pioneer House

Cebu is really urbanized that even our company is still growing its presence in the area. Definitely a mark of how people and cities adapt to changes and demand of the businesses.

Be Greater Than

Diary of a Working Mommy Bunny

Being a working mom is not easy. Regardless if you have a full-time 8-5 office job, a flexible work arrangement or a work at home mom, juggling work and family is never easy. It is but natural maternal instinct to take care of your family after work, on rest days or even when you’re at work. Despite the sacrifices and adjustments we have to do to make ends meet, I still find joy in having a full time job.

Prior to motherhood, I didn’t even think that parenting and team leading are alike in so many ways. Maybe it’s just me but I find it amusing that my style in dealing with my team works well even with Yui. 🙂



When there’s conflict between resources, we try to meet in the middle to find a win-win situation for both parties. Almost always, there is something that will be acceptable for everyone. Same goes when dealing with a hard-headed tot. Trying to find a middle ground works wonders in keeping peace in the house. My all-time  favorite example would be bathing. I want her to take a bath now. She’s busy playing. I ask her to bring her toy (just ensure that it’s plastic) to the bathroom and “wash” it because it’s dirty. She bathes. She plays. Win-win. 🙂


Reward good behavior instead of punishing the bad. Most of the time.

I make sure that whenever there’s something missed in deliverables or a mistake is done, the lesson is taught to them. I try my best to be firm yet civilized. As a parent, we don’t spank our child as punishment. We tell her the mistake in a stern, loud voice and sometimes give her a time out. Just as I don’t shout and embarrass my team in front of everyone. I also believe that rewarding or just simply acknowledging good behavior helps build a more adept individual and in the long run create a more harmonious relationship between us. I want them to grow up with high self esteem, knowing that they did something good, and in return give more to the team or the family.


Foster independence.

When I was starting out as a team lead a few years ago, I had a hard time delegating tasks to my teammates. Call it trust issue, but if I don’t see you skilled for it, I won’t entrust it in your hands. As I grow into the role though and eventually have a little one to “lead” at home, I learned that you have to sometimes take a leap of faith. There are things that you have to let them handle by themselves. By doing it on their own, they learn. They may make mistakes along the way, but they will learn. The important thing is that I’m there to guide them when they need it.


Life is a continuous learning process so my knowledge and techniques in dealing with my team and my family won’t end here. I’m sure there will be other styles that will work both at the office and at home.


Do you have any tips for raising children and “raising” a team? 🙂