Thursday, June 24, 2010

Stop it!

Thank God for vigilant people! :-) Look at the photo above (from and tell me: how would reading about condoms and Pills affect this child?

UN-Backed Sex-Ed Program in Philippines Put on Hold

By James Tillman

MANILA, Philippines, June 21, 2010 ( -- The Philippine Department of Education (DepEd) has decided to put a hold on the implementation of a new UN-backed sex-education program in elementary and high schools. The program had caused an uproar in the country, and was heavily opposed by parents and the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines.

"We decided to hold in abeyance the teaching of the sex education module until a final decision is made on the consultation process," DepEd Secretary Mona Valisno said.

The new program, “Institutionalizing Adolescent Reproductive Health through Lifeskills-Based Education," would have given sex education to children as young as 12. It was set to be introduced in 80 elementary and 79 high schools around the nation.

It would have incorporated sex education into the entire curriculum, not only in classes such as Health, Science, and PE, but also Music, Arts, Mathematics, English, and others. Valisno said that despite the momentary halt, some sex-ed subjects, such as the scientific treatment of the reproductive system, would still be handled.

Read the rest of it here.


First of all, what is the UN doing meddling with the affairs of Filipino family? If they're so bent on population control, they should just get rid of themselves and be done with it. (Iron man would send them orbiting around the solar system in a Stark spacecraft with toothpaste-like food to last them 50 years.) After all, if someone adamantly believes there's a surplus on people, then that person must also logically (and readily) admit that he is the surplus.

Here's the big problem with sex-ed, as quoted from the article:

Human Life International-Asia executive director Dr. Ligaya Acosta criticized the government's insistence that children need sex education, stating that sex education “is actually a course in systematic behavior modification, designed to change the child’s entire belief system.”

“The glaring truth is that researches around the world substantiate the fact that the more contraceptive programs are aimed at the young, the more pregnancies, abortions, promiscuity, sexually transmitted diseases, and cancer of the cervix results,” Acosta said.

(Emphasis is mine.)

Let's keep working towards the implementation of more character-based programs, and helping more parents understand their role as parents to instill in their children good virtues and a good understanding of what love is really all about.

...unless, of course, we want to end up thinking it's best to teach first graders this way.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Planning the day well

Have you ever considered waking up in the morning the biggest battle of the day? Here's some food for thought:

"You've got to get up every morning with determination if you're going to go to bed with satisfaction." George Horace Lorimer


I've been thinking about time lately, and how to spend it well (and why spend it well). And today I bumped into our chaplain at Holy Family Chapel in Eastwood. He asked me if I worked nearby and told me how happy he was to see me attending mass regularly, and then he said something that made me think--he said, in reference to the effort of attending daily mass, "How hardworking!"

I really like how that comment resounded--hardworking. When you say "I try to attend mass daily," people usually assume you have nothing else to do--and then here comes someone who says you're "hardworking" for doing the very same thing.

How does this fit into "spending time well"?

Working hard doesn't only mean you plow on without a moment's rest (you're not an ox). What if that leaves you so tired that you can't churn up good work anymore? A day well-spent requires planning. It needs enough hours for serious work, rest (which is another word for "less demanding work"), family time, friend time and quiet time. Mass is the time in which to hinge all those times--on weekdays, it takes just 30 mins, but I think this 30mins gives a person the right motivation to get all the things done properly that day.


Oh hey, it's St. Josemaria Escriva's feast day on June 26! His teachings on serving God in the midst of the world will always be helpful to every worker. Here's basically his answer to the question: why should time be spent well?

"How short indeed is the time of our passing through this world! For the true Christian these words ring deep down in his heart as a reproach to his lack of generosity, and as a constant invitation to be loyal. Brief indeed is our time for loving, for giving, for making atonement. It would be very wrong, therefore, for us to waste it, or to cast this treasure irresponsibly overboard. We mustn’t squander this period of the world’s history that God has entrusted to each one of us." (Friends of God)


Lastly, just like Corporate Cat in the photo above, let's also not waste time on shenanigans--particularly, our own.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Singin' (and almost dancin') in the rain

After some very hot and dry months, I find myself commuting again in the rain. My shoes are soaked. My pants are soaked. All my things are soaked. I come home with a cold--so my insides are soaked too.

My commuting route includes a lot of walking in the "wild" outdoors, so getting soaked can't be helped. And just last Friday, in an effort to stay dry, I took a tricycle going to the MRT, and guess what--the seat was wet. Rain-1, Me-0.

Dreary days and commuting always make me a little sad, especially when I'm hauling all my junk from one end of the city to another. It gets robotic; left foot, right foot, turn here, go in there.... So it's a good thing I recently got infected by the Gene-Kelly-Singing-in-the-Rain bug. (Ask Sunnyday.) Just the thought of Gene Kelly singing and dancing in the rain--having a wonderful time getting soaked--makes me smile at my own soaked situation. Humming the tune while taking the long walk seems to shorten the distance a whole lot... and before I know it, I'm where I ought to be.

Watch the video here.

Singing in the Rain

I'm singing in the rain
Just singing in the rain
What a glorious feelin'
I'm happy again
I'm laughing at clouds
So dark up above
The sun's in my heart
And I'm ready for love
Let the stormy clouds chase
Everyone from the place
Come on with the rain
I've a smile on my face
I walk down the lane
With a happy refrain
Just singin',
Singin' in the rain

Dancin' in the rain
Dee-ah dee-ah dee-ah
Dee-ah dee-ah dee-ah
I'm happy again!
I'm singin' and dancin' in the rain!

I'm dancin' and singin' in the rain...

Friday, June 11, 2010

Raising kids in a high-tech world

Owen Carandang is a natural! Ready smiles all the way--what a pleasant shoot this was! And what a pleasant cover too! I always break into a smile when I look at this sunny cover (our JUNE 2010 issue) taken by Krissy Rodriguez of Little People Lifestyle Photography.

This issue is all about Raising Kids in a High-Tech World. Because this new generation is growing up not knowing a life without computers, cellphones and iPods, it's a wonder how today's kids can be taught the value of imagination--don't all these high-tech media do the imagining for their consumers?

Another curious thing is the popularity of Facebook. I got to interview Educhild Facilitator Joy Barreiro for some insights on how Facebook can be maximized by parents to improve family relationships (instead of erasing them in favor of a "virtual life").

This month's Working Mother is Amihan Bonifacio-Ramolete, the Company Manager of Teatrong Mulat ng Pilipinas. If you've been reading some of my older posts, you'll know that Teatrong Mulat is dedicated to the art of puppetry--a form of entertainment that may not be under your list of "high-tech media." Her take on kids and entertainment provides a refreshing contrast to today's video-games-Internet-TV-and-movie circus that spells typical entertainment. It's wonderful to note that kids still do enjoy theater, music and books!

Finally, I can't help posting this photo of little Owen that I took during the cover shoot. I love his expression here! If there's a word balloon, what would you write?

Baby magazine is published by Marathon Publishing Co. and is sold at all National Bookstores, SM baby department stores, Babyland (Robinsons Galleria, Shaw Blvd. near Cherry Foodarama, Eastwood Mall), Baby & Co. (The Podium and Power Plant Mall), Bufini, Procreation Shangri-la mall, Big & Small Co. Shangri-la Mall.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Repost: Meet the Scholars!

Congratulations to the Ex Libris Philippines scholars, batch 2010: Frederick G. Precillas, Claudine V. Enduma, Mark Bryan F. Manantan, and Dancille Villarey!

Congratulations, Scholars. Mabuhay kayo!

Thank you to all who helped us out in our cause! Thanks to you, four UP students will be able to continue their education in UP.

For photos of the turn-over ceremony, click here.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Still on the hunt

...for the suitable word to use when pertaining to modesty in dress.

I found an article in Tiger Print about "The dreaded M-word" and true enough, as Katie Hinderer writes:
Say the word to most teens and young professionals today and they will immediately tune you out. There is something about the word that is cringe worthy. It brings forth images of shapeless skirts that brush the floor and unfeminine tops that cover from wrist to chin to hips. They see the swimsuits of yesteryear that were anything but functional for an actual swim or they envision baggy muumuus.

So, what are good words to use in its place? I heard some elegant ladies use positive dressing. Another idea is dignified dressing. How about person-centered fashion? Appropriate attire? Comfortable elegance? Or am I pushing it?

Looking for a more stylish word to use meantime is important because you don't want to make the people who can benefit from what you have to say tune you out! Modesty, on its own, is a positive word--but it may take a while for the fashion-forward to adopt such a backward-sounding word in their vocabulary.

The solution for now? Take a fashionable term and use it to gain an audience. But, sparingly, let the M-word come up... how else are we going to bring about a change in the word's image if we let it remain in its negative slump? Use it sparingly, but positively--at least start with what it truly means: decency and reserve, not only in dress, but also in words and conduct.

Photo from FALL 2010 collection of Roberto Cavalli