Saturday, April 25, 2015

Construction Plans + Kitchen Update

I'm about to hit the two month mark with my new employer which means that I'll finally be getting paid soon. Hooray!

Also, the latest word is that the voucher for my commutation request will be released by next week so I'll probably be able to pick up my check by the first week of May, also right on the two month mark. Given the fact that I'll have money coming in, our long-delayed condo renovations can finally begin.

The basic plan is to create a doorway between the two units and transfer the kitchen and dining table to the new unit. The TV from our bedroom will also be moved to the new unit and we might even be able to carve out a little play area for our son there.

The biggest expense will be the doorway because the condo admin is charging Php25,000 to have it done. That's right, Php25,000 to knock down a part of the wall to create a doorway. Also the admin will not allow a private contractor to do the knocking down since it insists that there are pipes and whatnot that may be damaged and that it is the only one that knows the schematics etc, therefore it is the only one who can safely create the doorway.

But if the private contractor submits a plan to the admin on where he/she wants to create the doorway and the admin approves the plan, then won't that argument fail? 

Anyway, tanggap ko na that I'll have to shell out Php25,000 to connect the two units and will be making the necessary adjustments to accommodate that into our budget (i.e. fixing up the kitchen unit instead of tearing it down and having a new one made). Also, all of our renovations are premised on the idea that we'll be converting the units into boarding houses in about 3-5 years time, hence our renovations should be more along the lines of fixing up the units so that we won't have to do as much when it's time to turn them into boarding houses. Does that make sense?

Speaking of kitchens, the new unit will be converted into our living, dining and kitchen, so we already fixed up the existing kitchen unit there a few months back. But since we were working on a very tight budget, instead of the Php45,000 brand new kitchen unit that our contractor proposed, we just had our suki carpenter fix the old one. Here's how it looked before:





And after it was fixed up and painted over.




Pwede na right? Total cost was Php7,000++ including labor and materials.

We still intend to install cabinet doors, subway tile backsplash, work/prep area and a ledge for the small appliances. Expect more construction/renovation posts here in the future as we finally start our perpetually delayed expansion.

Construction Plans + Kitchen Update

I'm about to hit the two month mark with my new employer which means that I'll finally be getting paid soon. Hooray!

Also, the latest word is that the voucher for my commutation request will be released by next week so I'll probably be able to pick up my check by the first week of May, also right on the two month mark. Given the fact that I'll have money coming in, our long-delayed condo renovations can finally begin.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Which One Are You?


As per that chart, I'm already financially smart but to heck with being financially smart, let's all strive for financial independence instead! #gogogo



*P.S. I don't know who to credit for the image, but if someone out there does, please tell me and I will edit this post to include a link. Thanks!

Which One Are You?


As per that chart, I'm already financially smart but to heck with being financially smart, let's all strive for financial independence instead! #gogogo



*P.S. I don't know who to credit for the image, but if someone out there does, please tell me and I will edit this post to include a link. Thanks!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Lime and Basil


For my birthday this year, my mom and sister joined me and the hubby to check out Lime and Basil in Alfonso, Cavite. I wanted to go somewhere new and pretty for my 36th birthday and Lime and Basil seemed to fit the bill, not to mention the fact that it had an ongoing promo with Deal Grocer  for a group meal for 4 selling for only Php1,600 from the original price of Php2,700. 

From the main road, we turned right into a tiny street and after two kilometers or so, we were greeted by a charming house with a large garden. It already felt like a vacation from the get go and it was so nice to see kids running around the garden being kids, instead of fiddling with Ipads and phones. I found myself daydreaming yet again of how my retirement will look like and made a mental note to push my retirement age to 50, instead of the mandatory 65. 



The restaurant itself was a simple square structure with folding doors that opened into the garden and let the wind in. It was right beside a larger house, which I presume was the owner's house, making it feel like we were guests in someone's house, partaking of their hospitality.



When I tallied the ala carte price of the items in the set menu, it didn't seem to reach the supposed original price of Php2,700 though. Unless they changed the prices in the menu on their Facebook page, here's how the prices were listed:

Lime and Basil Salad - 290
Fresh spring rolls - 240
Tom Yum Goong - 380
Crispy Pata curry - 750
Pineapple rice - 310
Dessert 
Pitcher of lemongrass juice

Total: Php1970

I couldn't find the price for the dessert of banana fritters with ice cream and pitcher of lemongrass juice on the menu, but unless they both come to a total of Php700, which I highly doubt, the original price was definitely not Php2,700. Also, the coupon price of Php1,600 doesn't include taxes so that was another thing we had to spring for.




For the record, I really did enjoy my experience in Lime and Basil and it really is worth the drive on a weekday, although I don't think I can say the same on a busy weekend since the drive to Tagaytay more than doubles with the traffic. But I do feel slightly cheated with the voucher I purchased from Deal Grocer because I was expecting a good deal but as it turned out, the original price was highly bloated to begin with and the savings was probably just somewhere between Php200 to Php400, if any.




This doesn't mean though that I'll stop using coupons altogether or that I'll dissuade anyone from going to Lime and Basil, but I'll probably be more cautious and do my homework (i.e. check out the original price) before buying a coupon for a purported deal, instead of taking their word at face value.

Lime and Basil


For my birthday this year, my mom and sister joined me and the hubby to check out Lime and Basil in Alfonso, Cavite. I wanted to go somewhere new and pretty for my 36th birthday and Lime and Basil seemed to fit the bill, not to mention the fact that it had an ongoing promo with Deal Grocer  for a group meal for 4 selling for only Php1,600 from the original price of Php2,700. 

Saturday, April 11, 2015

My First SRO Experience

Whenever people find out that I dabble in stocks, the next question after what stocks to buy usually is "When will I know when to buy or sell?". And the honest answer is it really depends on you. Buying or selling depends on whether or not you're an investor or a trader. It depends on the gameplan you have set for yourself. It really doesn't depend on the market, as some people might think, because the market is a fickle creature so you should be the constant thing in your stock investing/trading.


However, to get your gameplan into order, you have to dive headfirst into the world of stocks. Sure it's nice to do some studying before purchasing your first lot, but there's nothing quite like the threat of losing money that will force you to learn anything and everything you can about stocks.


My First SRO Experience

Whenever people find out that I dabble in stocks, the next question after what stocks to buy usually is "When will I know when to buy or sell?". And the honest answer is it really depends on you. Buying or selling depends on whether or not you're an investor or a trader. It depends on the gameplan you have set for yourself. It really doesn't depend on the market, as some people might think, because the market is a fickle creature so you should be the constant thing in your stock investing/trading.

However, to get your gameplan into order, you have to dive headfirst into the world of stocks. Sure it's nice to do some studying before purchasing your first lot, but there's nothing quite like the threat of losing money that will force you to learn anything and everything you can about stocks.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Staycations and Weaning


Judging from the photos on my Facebook and Instagram feed, most of the people I know as well as those I would like to know (read: stalk), went out of town for the holy week break. While I would love to fly to Japan and frolic under a canopy of cherry blossoms, it's sadly not possible this time or any time soon. And so it's a staycation for us. But before you start sending cards offering your sympathy, let me make it clear that I actually enjoy staycations during long breaks. 

I love how quiet and peaceful our condominium compound gets once the students go on their summer break. Also, I don't like to point fingers but the whole compound and our building also become cleaner with the students gone, with no biscuit wrappers littering the streets or empty take out containers stashed along the stairwell.


With the holy week vacation about to end real soon, I find myself raring to go back to work and plotting out the things that need to be done, which for me means that this was a successful vacation. Aside from getting some R&R, I finally got around to weaning our son from breastfeeding. He'll be two years old by May but still demands the boob, particularly before his bedtime and in the middle of the night.

I originally  thought of letting him initiate the weaning process since that's supposed to be the more gentle method, but if I wait for him to wean himself, then we'll still be breastfeeding up to his elementary years. Definitely not acceptable.

The long break was the perfect time to wean and the plan was for my son and his yaya to sleep over  at my sister's house for a few nights, and then my husband and I would pick them up the following morning. We began last Monday and I was surprised at how his absence at night really affected me. I thought I would be kicking up my heels and enjoying my first full night of sleep without a squirmy child beside me, but after his first night away from home, my husband and I were at my sister's house even before 7AM, anxious to see our baby. As it turned out, he was a total champ about it and it was the parents, particularly the mother, who needed to be comforted :p


It's been six days since I  last breastfed my son and he's been super chill about it. He still asks for dede but it's so much easier to distract him now with a book, a bottle of milk or an impromptu song and dance number. However, just last night when he finally slept in our house again, he threw a massive, earsplitting tantrum at 1AM (sorry neighbors!) and I ended up carrying and rocking his 25lb self back to sleep. 

I know that his need for breastmilk is not really about nutrition as it is about trying to be close to me, so we spend a lot of time cuddling while he's watching TV and do a lot of things together. In fairness though, even with last night's major cry-fest, I noticed that he's no longer as insistent with getting his milk fix and he gave up way easier in trying to pull my shirt up as compared with the weeks before we began the   weaning process. Hopefully our nights will get easier in time.

Let me end this post with some happy staycation photos around our starter home neighborhood:






We're off to the pool ourselves in a few minutes to take advantage of the sunshine before Chedeng makes her presence felt. Happy Easter everyone!!


Staycations and Weaning


Judging from the photos on my Facebook and Instagram feed, most of the people I know as well as those I would like to know (read: stalk), went out of town for the holy week break. While I would love to fly to Japan and frolic under a canopy of cherry blossoms, it's sadly not possible this time or any time soon. And so it's a staycation for us. But before you start sending cards offering your sympathy, let me make it clear that I actually enjoy staycations during long breaks. 

Thursday, April 2, 2015

2015 First Quarter Net Worth Report


It's that time of the year again when I check on my investments, crunch some numbers and see how our net worth is doing. I honestly wasn't looking forward to this quarter's net worth report because with my two month salary delay brought about by moving to a new job, it's been all about seeing the money go out without any coming in. Again, thank goodness for our emergency funds that pretty much sustained us for the past month and will hopefully be enough to keep us alive for the next few weeks.


2015 First Quarter Net Worth Report


It's that time of the year again when I check on my investments, crunch some numbers and see how our net worth is doing. I honestly wasn't looking forward to this quarter's net worth report because with my two month salary delay brought about by moving to a new job, it's been all about seeing the money go out without any coming in. Again, thank goodness for our emergency funds that pretty much sustained us for the past month and will hopefully be enough to keep us alive for the next few weeks.