Tuesday, July 29, 2008

We're on week 36!

According to babycenter.com,

How your baby's growing:

Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds (like a crenshaw melon) and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. She's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of her first bowel movement.

At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. (Full-term is 37 to 42 weeks; babies born before 37 weeks are pre-term and those born after 42 are post-term.) Most likely she's in a head-down position. But if she isn't, your practitioner may suggest scheduling an "external cephalic version," which is a fancy way of saying she'll try to coax your baby into a head-down position by manipulating her from the outside of your belly.

How your life's changing:

Now that your baby is taking up so much room, you may have trouble eating a normal-size meal. Smaller, more frequent meals are often easier to handle at this point. On the other hand, you may have less heartburn and have an easier time breathing when your baby starts to "drop" down into your pelvis. This process — called lightening — often happens a few weeks before labor if this is your first baby. (If you've given birth before, it probably won't happen before labor starts.) If your baby drops, you may also feel increased pressure in your lower abdomen, which may make walking increasingly uncomfortable, and you'll probably find that you have to pee even more frequently. If your baby is very low, you may feel lots of vaginal pressure and discomfort as well. Some women say it feels as though they're carrying a bowling ball between their legs!

You might also notice that your Braxton Hicks contractions are more frequent now. Be sure to review the signs of labor with your practitioner and find out when she wants to hear from you. As a general rule, if you're full-term, your pregnancy is uncomplicated, and your water hasn't broken, she'll probably have you wait to come in until you've been having contractions that last for about a minute each, coming every five minutes for an hour. Of course, you'll want to call right away if you notice a decrease in your baby's activity or think you're leaking amniotic fluid, or if you have any vaginal bleeding, fever, a severe or persistent headache, constant abdominal pain, or vision changes.

Even if you're enjoying an uncomplicated pregnancy, it's best to avoid flying (or any travel far from home) during your final month because you can go into labor at any time. In fact, some airlines won't let women on board who are due to deliver within 30 days of the flight.


Now pa lang dapat 6 lbs. si baby ko? Oh my, he was 6lbs 1oz. 10 days ago! I guess Lucas is on the "big" side (good luck sa akin come d-day). According to my mom, i weighed 8.2 lbs when I was born, so kayang-kaya ko raw i-normal si baby (i-pressure ba ako? :-) ). So I guess I have to continue my "no sweets" diet. Nung last visit kasi kay OB, I gained 3 lbs in one week so she told me "wala" na dapat ako sweets. Week before that, "bawasan" lang yung bilin niya so mukhang malaki nga yung gain ko for just a week :-D

Less than a month na lang before my due date. Please continue praying for our health and a safe delivery.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Not feeling well :-(

Arggghhhh... I am not feeling well. My throat hurts, my head is so heavy seems like it has lead in it, my eyes sting too. This is the first time in my almost 36 weeks of pregnancy. Ang yabang ko pa before since kahit simple colds, wala akong naranasan. Feeling super healthy :-( I guess my love for ice cold water and juices now took its toll.

I am just hoping it will not get worse. Not now :-( I have tons to do pa in the office before I take my maternity leave. Not counting today, I only have 1 work week to finish everything since I can give birth anytime na starting next week. Hay, I hope a rest this weekend will make me feel better.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Value of the UP Experience

Just a nice article I got in my email. Thought I'd pose it here.


First published 6 June 2008

The Manila Standard Today


maya baltazar herrera


The value of the UP Experience

There are no children here

This week, I went to a meeting at the UP School of Economics and I

came away with renewed belief in the value of the UP experience.

If you speak to anyone from UP – student, professor, alumnus - you

will get no Latin slogans or apologies about how the school teaches

values in spite

of its outward materialism. This is not a student population that

thinks about basketball games or memorizes school songs. This is not

a school that

chooses one statement to drill into the minds of its students.

This is not, of course, to say that UP does not care about values.

It is that UP, in its own inimitable , believes that values

cannot be force-fed.

The statue of the naked man that guards the entrance to the campus

in Diliman best represents UP's approach to all education and the

respect for students that is the center of its educational

philosophy. All who come to this university, regardless of origin,

bring themselves naked, carrying nothing but their thirst; like the

proverbial empty teacup, making an offering of self, waiting to be



For many students from private schools, the first lesson that is

learned here is that this is a school for adult education. There are

no children here, and that is why no parents are allowed either at

freshman orientation or during enlistment.

The spirit of the oblation lies not in a mother or a father offering

up hischild to the world, it is that of the newly adult, freely

offering of his self.

I remember quite vividly that moment that drove home how different

the UP education continues to be. It was my daughter's first

semester in university and she had invited a group of her high

school friends to our house. One of them asked a classmate whether

she had gotten her parents permission form approved for that

weekend's outreach activity. From the UP population around the table

came the mock horrified responses of: "Permission? " and "Outreach?"

I thought about it and realized that all of these students were, in

fact, legally adults. I thought it interesting that only the UP

students appeared to appreciate this fact.

Even more interesting was the "outreach" comment. I think back to my

own university years and the last three years that my daughter has

been in UP and am certain there is no lack of civic activity. There

are medical missions, house building projects, tree planting,

community work and barrio work and so on. I realize now that the

reaction was not to the activity as much as it was to the use of the


One of the most important differences of the UP campus from all the

other campuses my children considered going to is that this campus

has no walls. Many parents fear this. They are afraid their precious

children will not be protected from the ills of society in a campus

that is so open to the rest of the world.

But UP is open to the world in more ways than just not having the

physical walls.


Being in UP means much more than being a student. This campus is

enmeshed in a community. This community is made up not only of the

transient population of students who go home each night. It includes

the many, many students who lay their heads on dorm pillows each

night, enduring time away from families in the firm belief that this

campus will bring them closer to their dreams. This community

includes the families of faculty and employees who live on campus.

It also includes the many people who work not for the University,

but nevertheless work on campus. This community includes the lady

who remembers the brand of cigarette you smoke and automatically

hands it to you in the morning. It includes the gentleman who

remembers you like pepper on your egg sandwich or the one who knows

you will dip your fish balls into two of his sauces, who patiently

waits for you to eat your three sticks before being paid. It

includes the woman who saw all her children through college by

selling peanuts every day on campus.

To a UP student, the daily heartbeat of the school is never far away

from the realities of the country. The word outreach suggests that

civic activity is something outside of the normal, something you do

once in a while. It must be immensely difficult to think of

community as a thing apart when your campus experience brings you

face to face with all of the world's realities every day.


All of this probably explains that unmistakable sense of self that

you will find from students who come from this campus.

Here is a campus where all have the same opportunities to learn. But

also, here is a campus that will give all the same opportunities to

fail. There are no guidance counsellors who will chase after you

because you have been skipping classes. The attitude this university

takes is that you must take the initiative – for learning, for

seeking help, for realizing you need help.

That is not to say that no help exists. But it is help that is not

forced upon you.

This is a university rich in both introspection and conversation. On

this campus, the student is constantly exposed to people – faculty,

administrators, community members, other students – who care deeply

and passionately about the world. The conversations are almost never

purely cerebral. A single graph can provoke comments about

government policy and its effects on people.

As a result, UP is home to a student population that looks at the

world and cares. It is easy to see pictures of protesting students

and dismiss it as radicalism. But there are few campuses in this

country where students go beyond a passing curiosity about what is

happening in the world beyond their own lives. There are even fewer

universities where students not only care but also actually believe

they have a responsibility to make a difference – not in some hazy

future – today.

And that, I believe, is what truly forges character. Character is

not molded by speeches or long classes in ethics or theology.

Character grows from within. It begins by being handed the keys to

your own self and being told you are in charge; you now have power

over yourself and your own actions – and with that power, you take

on responsibilities.

Each student in this university goes through his own unique voyage

of discovery. On his voyage, as he decides what he cares about, what

he will fight for and what he will sacrifice, he crafts his own

personal values. That is what education is truly about.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Baby Shower

My bestfriends Veej and Rhex organized a baby shower for us and it was held last Saturday at Veej's place in Paranaque. It was a fun afternoon for us (it's been a while since we last saw each other). I was planning to wait for the pictures taken from Rhex's and Veej's cameras before posting anything about it, but I cannot wait na so I posted pictures taken from our camera in our Multiply site's Photo section. I will just upload the pictures from Rhex and Veej when I get them. (Hopefully soon :-) ).

Before going to the party, we dropped by Shopwise to buy their grilled chicken and their yummy chocolate cupcakes. A little addition lang to the goodies that Veej prepared for the event. We were greeted by Veej and Rhex upon arriving. I was also informed that some of my friends cannot make it to the party (expected since I already had my first shower, courtesy of Sheryl and Agnes). My sister and Tita Blyn (if you guys are reading this, you better make it up to me somehow.. :-)... seriously) weren't able to attend because of work. The party's been rescheduled thrice, I think, and given all of Veej's and Rhex's efforts, sayang if we will not be able to have the party dahil nanganak na ako :-) So, Veej and I agreed that we will push through with it July 19th, kahit na it will just be me, JJ, Veej and her hubby, Ben.

When we entered Veej's place, there's no doubt that the party is for me. Everywhere I look, there is something purple (hands down, my fave color). A touch of mint green was added to the motif. My inaanak Pong's old baby clothes were also on display as decor for the party. Moving into the dining area, napa-wow ako when I saw the purple/mint green diaper cake made by Veej. It is sooooo cute :-) Natuwa rin ako when I saw that Veej posted "LUCAS" in big letters sa may kitchen area.
After taking pictures, we started sampling the yummy food Veej prepared. Rhex brought baked pasta and it worked well with the pimiento sandwiches, nachos with salsa, sour cream and cheese and barbeque that Veej prepared. Ninang Vicky also made this yummy Asian pomelo salad for us. She even baked brownies for dessert :-) Food trip talaga kami palagi whenever we visit their place (no wonder, madalas dito kami nakatambay since high school).

While eating, Ate Laine, her hubby Jogoy and my dear friend Vanj arrived. Siempre, napahaba ang kainan and kuwentuhan session. We were laughing most of the time! I had lots of mommy-to-be questions for already-moms Veej and Vanj. Like, how will I know ba if I am in labor na? What to do when this happens? Etc. etc. The two were happy to share ideas and things that worked for them during pregnancy and tips on how to take care of a newborn baby. May side discussion rin on house hunting as Ate Laine & Jogoy and Rhex are all on the look-out for a place to call their own home.

Elmo and my 35-weeks tummy.After eating, we played a game wherein a baby doll would have to be dressed up. Easy right? But the catch is, only one hand per person will be used during the game. Of course, JJ and I were paired, newlyweds Ate Laine and Jogoy were another pair and Vanj and Rhex made up pair number 3. It looks easy but given the limitation of using just one hand, mejo nahirapan kami ni JJ sa start. Our baby Elmo pa makes this cute sound whenever we pressed his chest too hard kaya usually, nagugulat ako during the game. Eventually, we won the game (ewan lang if pinagbigyan nila kami since kami yung celebrants).Of course, the party will not be complete without opening the gifts for Baby Lucas. Thanks thanks to Eunice, Ate Laine, Jogoy and Vanj for attending the party and for the gifts you gave our little boy. Thanks to Rhex and specially Veej & Ben (babawi kami promise! So work on baby no. 2 na :-) ) for the fun, fun baby shower. Thanks also to Ninang Vicky for having us in her house once again.

Friday, July 18, 2008

One Word Tag

Thanks Anne for the tag :-)

Here’s the game: you have to answer the question with ONE WORD only and then you have to tag 4 people.

1. Where is your cell phone? BOOKSHELF
2. Your significant other? BEDROOM
3. Your hair? LONG
4. Your mother? THOUGHTFUL
5. Your father? KIND
6. Your favorite thing? BOOK
7. Your dream last night? NONE
8. Your favorite drink? ROOTBEER
9. Your dream/goal? MILLIONAIRE
10. The room you’re in? DINING
11. Your hobby? READING
12. Your fear? SICKNESS
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? CANADA
14. What you’re not? PETITE
15. Muffins? SWEET
16. One of your wish list items? WATCH
17. Where you grew up? MUNTINLUPA
18. The last thing you did? ATE
19. What are you wearing? DRESS
20. Favorite gadget? LAPTOP
21. Your pets? NONE
22. Your computer? COMPAQ
23. Your mood? SLEEPY
24. Missing someone? PARENTS
25. Your car? NONE
26. Something you’re not wearing? WATCH
27. Favorite store? NATIONAL
28. Like someone? JJ
29. Your favorite color? PURPLE
30. When is the last time you laughed? TODAY
31. Last time you cried? JUNE

I am tagging Tita By, Chissa, VJ and Verajoys

35th Week

Baby and I had our regular check up earlier today and Dra. De Guia performed an ultrasound to check our little boy's position and to see how he's doing in my tummy.

  • Biparietal Diameter - 9 cm - 36 weeks 4 days
  • Head Circumference - 32 cm - 36 weeks 0 days
  • Abd. Circumference - 31.1 cm - 35 weeks 0 days
  • Femoral Length - 7.2 cm - 36 weeks 4 days
  • Ave. Ultrasonic Age 36 weeks
  • Estimated Fetal Weight - 2753 grams or 6 Lbs 1 Oz

When she saw my tummy, OB said that I seem to be carrying a small baby because my bump is not that pronounced. However, when the ultrasound started, she said na my baby's big daw :-) She even said "Sigurado ka ba na 35 weeks ka lang? :-) ". Baby's bone measurements kasi are one week off the mark. Siempre, worry naman ako because I was really watching my food intake para hindi masyado big si baby. But the doctor said that it's really our boy's bone structure with matching "saka malalaki naman kayong tao na mag-asawa eh." Imagine, stop na ako on sugar niyan ha? Paano pa kaya kung hindi ako tumigil sa sweets? I also found out why my back and hips are aching these days. I am carrying a 6lbs-baby na pala. Since everything is a-okay, instead of coming back for a check up next week, we'll see our OB again in two weeks time. The next time daw, may admitting letter na ako na baon when we go home. Hay. Homestretch na talaga. And speaking of stretch, may lumabas na several stretch marks in my lower tummy. I guess I'm really meant to have them since I was religious in applying body butter naman.

We also purchased a "My Little Bed" co-sleeper for Lucas. We've been choosing between these three kinds:

My Little Bed

Snuggle Nest

First Years

First Years and My Little Bed were both available in SM. We were initially thinking of getting the First Years brand but when hubby saw that it has no bolster pillows, napaisip na siya. He thinks that the one with the pillows is more safe for baby. And we also read some reviews stating that limiting factor sa length of use yung parang harang sa may feet area. Snuggle Nest sana okay rin kasi walang harang, but wala sa SM and I cannot find online sellers. So, it was down to "My Little Bed". Suwerte rin because when we decided na we'll be buying it na, clearance sale sa SM and we got it at 50% off. Not bad

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Chitchat and Birthdays

Long time, no entry. I noticed that it’s been more than a week since my last kuwento. I’ve been busy lately and I can’t find the time to jot something down and update my blog.

Hmm, so what’s new with me? Baby Lucas is now on his 34th week inside my tummy. I can definitely tell when he’s awake and when he’s asleep. He loves moving around in there and what’s really funny is the fact that he somersaults a lot when I am attending a meeting. Maybe, given my relaxed state, I can feel his movements better but still, it makes me smile whenever I am jolted by one of his kicks during meetings. Our weekly check-ups will start this Friday. We’re also up for an ultrasound to check his position. I am kinda scared of stepping up the weighing scale because I gained 21 lbs already and I don’t wanna overshot the normal weight gain during pregnancy. I’m all for a normal delivery that’s why I am cutting down on sugar and other “bad” food, (including chocolates. Sniff. Sniff).

I so miss you T!

Last Thursday, I met with Sheryl and Aggie and had dinner at Clawdaddy’s in High Street FB. Unfortunately, Laurs was swamped with work so she wasn’t able to meet with us. It was an “expectant mom/ titas” meeting as both She’s and Ag’s sister-in-laws are pregnant. So, in one way or another, all three of us are expecting a baby in the family this year. It was also the first baby shower for Lucas as they both gave me gifts for the little boy. (Thanks again She and Ag).

Sunday was a busy day for us as we had two birthday parties to attend. Good thing Tita Olive’s party is for lunch and Miggy’s party is at 3PM. Tita Olive’s celebration was held at Alba’s Restaurant in Tomas Morato. The food was great and the dessert, oh my, really yummy. They served Brazo de Mercedes, banana cream pie and mango tart. I was able to have a few bites of everything (thank you JJ) and I would have loved to have more but I had to stop since I am trying to reduce my sugar intake. JJ kept on telling me, “Sandali na lang naman. Tiis ka na muna.” It was fun to see Kuya Larry’s little girls again and do they love to pose for pictures J

Cutie pie sisters, Laura Mae and Lily Anne

After lunch, we rushed to Muntinlupa to attend my nephew Miggy’s first birthday party. We arrived just in time for the kiddie party. My sister-in-law prepared the kiddie meals herself and commissioned Queensland Catering for the ‘adult’ food. JJ and I weren’t able to eat that much as we were still full from the buffet we had at lunch. But I had the chance to taste the food when I had dinner. I loved the liempo and the chicken pastel dishes.

The guapito birthday boy, Juan Miguel.

And that is how our weekend went by. Oh, and one last thing, Baby Lucas got a gift again that day. My Tita Blyn bought a Graco Play Pen for him. (Thanks Lola Tita By).

Monday, July 7, 2008

Sports Weekend

JJ and I spent our weekend at home since long walks are difficult for me these days. I have to stop and sit down every once in a while when we go out. We spent Saturday and Sunday mornings in bed, I was reading a book I bought just last week and he was either online or playing with his PSP. Afternoons were spent napping and evenings were spent watching our fave sports. Mejo nakakainip pala pag walang lakad (highlight na ata when we tagged along with FIL when he went to Makro for groceries) but after a while I realized that days like the past weekend will be difficult to have once Lucas pops out since we'll be busy with him na.

The Wimbledon Finals and the British Grand Prix were both scheduled last weekend. I am a Nadal and Raikkonen fan. The result of the Wimbledon Finals is more than pleasing but the grand prix results were a little disappointing. I couldn't write what happened in my own words (baka puro shortcuts lang ang masabi ko) so I just plucked articles from websites to describe what happened :-)


So now we know. For 65 matches spanning six years we have wondered who could possibly be the man to stop Roger Federer on grass, and at Wimbledon. Did such a player exist, or was Federer's elegant supremacy such that the mere idea was the stuff of ridiculous imagination?

On Centre Court on Sunday, imagination took flight. The sporting world trembled on its axis, and mother nature sent out thunderclaps and lightning around the All England Club to herald the extraordinary moment. So remember the date, July 6 2008, the time, 9.15pm, and then shout the name out loud: Rafael Nadal.

Little wonder the Spanish national motto is Plus Ultra – literally, further beyond. If the translation is clumsily ungrammatical, then the legend itself spells out in neon what Nadal achieved. Four weeks to the day since he permitted the Swiss a confidence-mincing total of four games in his clay court kingdom of Roland Garros, Nadal robbed Federer of his most treasured possession, the title that defined him: his Wimbledon crown.

The 22-year-old Majorcan already has four successive French Open victories, but this is his most glittering prize. Three weeks ago at Queen’s he became the first Spaniard to take a grass court title in 36 years. But it is 42 years since a player from his nation conquered the lawns of SW19.

The moment when at last he touched victory hit him like a bullet in the chest. It left him flattened on the turf, eyes squeezed shut, face crumpled. Tears came, and he rolled over into a near-foetal position, before staggering to his feet to acknowledge Federer at the net. But the need to be with those he loves the most was paramount for Nadal, and he clambered the stands to find their embrace, before taking a startling walk over an adjoining roof to receive a handshake from the Spanish crown prince in the royal box.

Little wonder he felt such need for release. All through the match he had contained his confidence, with none of the lavish celebration so habitual to his game. Dozens of times in any given match he can be seen extravagantly rejoicing in some extraordinary shot by swerving away with his left fist clenched, arm pumping, shouting: “Vamos!” But today there was no investment of energy in such wastefulness until late in the final set. Face set in concentration, he permitted himself just an occasional fist-clench of affirmation, until almost the moment he smote the legend.

Who could blame him? Every second of this match was cloaked in spine-tingling tension, and that was just for those who watched. What must it have been like inside Nadal’s skin, to wake on Sunday morning in the knowledge that this was the most important day of his professional life?

Twelve months ago here, he became the only person to have taken Federer to five sets since his grass court streak began in the ancient days of 2003. This year so many voices publicly proclaimed him champion before a ball was struck. But he was facing a man who was bidding to make history, by becoming the first player in 122 years to win the men's singles title at Wimbledon six times in succession. Federer was decreed to be at his most vulnerable, yet no one else here had been able unburden Federer of so much as a set in the whole fortnight. The only outcome no one could envisage was an anti-climax.

On a cool and blustery afternoon, the Centre Court crowd were all but gibbering with anticipation. Arriving on court Nadal looked tense and purposeful; Federer strolled in behind him with a graceful wave to acknowledge the ovation. When umpire Pascal Maria called time, Federer strode at once to the baseline, but Nadal lingered for 10 seconds in his chair, pondering his destiny.

He grasped the first point of the match with a powerful forehand, and it prompted not only long applause but a great murmuring ripple through the crowd, as if some sensational piece of news was being passed among them. Even the sun peered out from the dark skies above, unable to resist the lure of the action.

Moments later the ripple was a roar of astonishment. The match was three games old, but already the Spaniard had a break, and Federer never got it back. It felt as if the mental burden of that Roland Garros evisceration was casting a shadow.

The shadow grew longer when Nadal came back from 1-4 down to take the second 6-4. Federer, the grass court king, was two sets down. If that seemed unreal, it was positively eerie when at 3-3 in the third, Nadal galloped to 0-40.

They felt very much like match points – but all went by. On such chances great matches might hinge. An 80-minute break for rain saw Federer renewed, as if he had remembered that all he had to fear was fear itself. From being dangerously near defeat, he took the set on the tie-break.

The fourth set tie-break was a thing of heart-stopping beauty – heart-stopping in its tension, beautiful in its quality. Twice Nadal held Championship point, and twice heaven passed him by on the other side. Federer took it to a fifth, and here at last Nadal’s destiny lay waiting.

There is no sound like the roar of the Centre Court crowd as it tumbles on to the turf. The great wave of it crashed over Nadal. Was there ever such a final as this? The king is dead; long live the king.

Article from wimbledon.org. Written by Kate Battersby.


Kimi Raikkonen has had a fortunate couple of races and collected 13 points, when he could easily have ended up with nothing. In France he nursed an ailing car to the finish and wasn't asked to pit to remove a flailing piece of machinery. In Britain, he lost his car going backwards out of control towards the pitlane barriers but stopped short.

It was a rare sight to see the Ferrari consistently lapping five or sex seconds slower than the Mclaren, and on one lap he was a whole eight seconds slower than Robert Kubica. This wasn't a case of getting caught out in unforeseen rain, this was a miscalculation of grip and tyre wear by Ferrari.

Lest it be forgot when Raikkonen lost it backwards through Woodcote he had the right tyres on.

Up until the first pit-stops he looked in ominous form but his fall from grace was spectacular.

(from planet-f1.com)