Friday, October 30, 2015

Clean Hands Raised: Global Handwashing Day 2015

                There was an air of cheer as Jawili Integrated School pupils and students started the day with the flag ceremony and raised their hands as they pledged to keep their hands clean and spread awareness on the importance of proper handwashing.

                Various contests were held for learners to showcase their talents and their knowledge and expertise on proper handwashing. There were slogan, essay writing, and poem writing contests in three languages – English, Filipino, and Akeanon. For the creative artists, there was a Hand Art Contest for kindergarten pupils, Drawing Contest for grades 1-3 pupils, and Poster Making for grades 4-6 and grades 7-10. Their arts were displayed on a wall for others to see and admire.

                Then, the learners formed their lines toward a clean and bright future as they look at their hands, washed their hands with soap and water, and smiled as they show off their clean hands. Members of the Philippine National Police also joined in the celebration and washed their hands with the learners and the teachers.

                Indeed, handwashing is for everybody and we, at Jawili Integrated School, raise our hands for hygiene!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Deck Doctor – Why it is important to keep your deck in good condition

Many people take their decks for granted. It may have been a lively place in the house once, where you have received guests, threw a party or a barbecue, or just a place where you spent quality time with the family. However, time passed and it rendered your deck unworthy of such occasions. You have other choices so you can easily ignore the deck. However, reports of accidents and sense of practicality prove that it is definitely better to have a safe deck, in its best condition.  

While life expectancy of a deck is up to twenty five years, there are extrinsic factors that can affect its early need for repairs. It can be exposure to extreme weather conditions, severe usage, and even accidents. This is why it is even expected that partial removal of the deck will be needed after a decade.

Deck Maintenance

There are different companies that offer deck maintenance and repair. They can help you preserve the life and beauty of your deck. They can even assist you with the basic deck maintenance.

  • Keep it clean. Just like everything else, the first step to maintain your deck is to keep it clean. Set a schedule or a regular time for cleaning. First, you have to observe and plan. Choose the parts that easily get dirt. How should you clean your deck? Where should you start? What are the things that you will need? Then, wash the deck and rinse. You can do all these or you can let the professionals keep your deck clean for optimum results. As they clean, you can put your feet up and enjoy the sun or attend to other more important tasks.
  • Keep it safe. You should always be on the lookout for parts of your deck that demands attention and taking care of. Decks look best when they are stained. However, you should check and make sure that it is ready before you have it stained. You need to make sure that there are no loose boards and that there are no loose nails for a hassle-free staining experience. In cases of loose boards, you can remove the loose board carefully. Then, you can go to the hardware or construction supply store and purchase a board with the exact measurement as the one that you removed. Then, put it on its place. It is best to choose a wooden board that is pressure-treated. Loose nails should be hammered immediately. It is also important to replace nails right when they start to rust. This is also a task that you can let the experts do for you.
  • Keep it stained. Stain is skin care for decks. While you wash, tone, and moisturize, your deck should also stay clean, perfect, and beautiful. There are different shades of wood stain available in the market today so no matter what your preferences are, you can easily find the perfect wood stain. Just remember to choose one that does not only provide beauty, but also protection for your deck.

Deck as good as new

There are different ways on how you can make your deck look new again. However, it is best to consult a professional about what you want done to make sure that it is done right. Here are some of the options for your younger-looking deck:

  • Clean and clear. You can opt for a clear, colorless sealant. This will enhance the natural beauty of your deck. This is like natural makeup for your deck. However, this kind of sealant does not give as much protection as a pigmented one so retouch in every year or so is needed.
  • Shades and Sheers. If you cannot commit to annual sealant retouch, you can choose a pigmented sealant instead. This will give you two more years before the next touch up as it can last for up to three years.
  • With flying colors. If aesthetics is on the top of your list and you do not mind deck touch ups in a matter of months, they you can also use colors on your deck. However, if you just want to add solid colors but you are not ready for such an obligation, then you can limit its application to your deck’s vertical elements. It is a great idea to use it on the balusters instead.

Taking care of your deck is taking care of the environment

Do you know that because of people who fail to perform deck maintenance promptly, about six million trees are cut and used for new decks? This is why deck maintenance and repair can help you save money and save the earth.

How do you know when it is time for a deck repair?

Never ignore what your deck says or what your deck shows. Here are some tell-tale signs that your deck is screaming for attention and repairs:

  • Rot Wailer. When the edges of your deck’s wood are wailing as it is starting to rot, then it is time for a repair. It is unsightly and it is a sign that the woods are getting weak. Have the necessary repairs done to prevent accidents in the future. Protect your deck as you protect your loved ones from potential accidents.
  • Foot loose. Cracked and loose woods also scream for change. In such cases, have your deck checked and repaired. As they say, prevention is better than cure. Do not wait for someone to get hurt before you take action. Bear in mind that it is your family who will most likely suffer from injuries in case of accidents because of lose or cracked woods on your deck.
  • Losing it. Loose hand railings as well as loose and weak support are equally dangerous as cracked and loose wooden boards. There is no need to fret, though. Just keep calm and call the experts.
To find the best deck repairs and maintenance service provider, research, ask for recommendations, and read reviews.

Photo credits: Flicker's Creative Commons

Saturday, March 14, 2015

I Scream for Ice Cream!

Ice cream will always be the top comfort food. While others may want something else, no one really hates ice cream and this is perfectly understandable. Ice cream embraces you fully, no matter who you are, no matter where you came from, and no matter how you feel at the moment. It comes in different colors and flavors. It comes in different consistencies. It comes in different prices. Even one ice cream flavor can have an endless list of possible varieties.

Summer is here and under the scorching sun, I dream of smooth, heavenly goodness that melts in my mouth and soothes me wholly. Let me share to you, my top 3 favorite ice cream flavors:

1. So Very Strawberry. I don't really know what it is about strawberries but I love it and I love it more in ice cream! Some people I know actually think it tastes weird but I love it. I think it is the interesting mix of sweet, sour, and creamy.

2. Dreaming of Cookies n' Cream. it is actually a family favorite. We usually get two ice cream flavors when we get together and there's no question that one of those is cookies n' cream. Now, I love it more because it brings back lots of memories. It actually feels like home.

3. Living Vanilla Loca. Yes. I love good old plain vanilla. I love it because it allows you to get creative. Add syrups, nuts, fruits, sprinkles, marsh mallows, chocolate chips - the list never ends. 

Indulge. Dream and scream for ice cream. And don't forget the cherry on top!

Images from Flickr Creative Commons

Thursday, March 5, 2015

How to get NBI Clearance - National Bureau of Investigation Roxas

I am not a big fan of processing documents especially because of long lines with uncertain results. However, with my profession, it is impossible to stay away from such circumstances. I experienced spending a whole day to file for the board exams. Thankfully, I passed so I didn't have to go through that again. Then, I had to spend a whole day to submit the required documents for the license. Another day to pay for it, and one more day to get my license. I know there are many people out there who experienced worse. 

As I was not able to become a regular teacher in my first year of teaching, I have to go through the process of ranking again, this year. One of the required documents for it is the NBI clearance. Thankfully, I had a rather pleasant experience with that. I did not get stressed out at all that's why I was able to take photos to use for this blog post: How to get your NBI clearance

First, you have to fill out a form. Then, when called, go to window 1. In other places, you may be given a number and wait for it to be called or flashed on screen. Here are the rates as of 3/5/2015:

Then, go to Window 2 for data encoding wherein the clerk will verify some of the information in your form. Then, they get your fingerprints. No more of that messy ink, though. They take it digitally. In some cases, like my little fingers, it may require several tries and application of a mystery cream/lotion. Your image will also be taken using their webcam.

In some cases, like in NBI Roxas, window 3 has the same purpose as window 2. In such case, you can now go to window 4 to get your clearance. If you do not have a "hit" or a person with the same name as yours, then you can get your NBI clearance in Roxas for thirty minutes or less. Now, some people lose sleep over getting a "hit" from NBI. It does not mean that you have a criminal record for most cases. It's all a matter of having the same name as another person. Now that gives you a reason to love your name if it's usually misspelled by others.

However, in my case, I have a "hit" so my receipt looks like this:

I was asked to come back after seven days. After seven days, I went straight to window 4 and got my NBI clearance in about five minutes. 

Thank you NBI Roxas for a stress-free NBI clearance experience!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Shop and Travel for Less – The Key to being a Smart Spender

One of the top New Year’s resolutions is to save more money. Likewise, some people resolve to travel more and there are also some who want to cut their shopping expenses off. The truth is that with a little ingenuity, you can fulfill all these three goals. These do not have to be your New Year’s resolutions too. These are simple ways on how you can enjoy life more.

  • Jar of hearts. A good way to recycle a glass jar is to use it for loose change. It may sound rather simple but a little every day goes a long way. Label the glass jar with what you plan to spend it on. It could be for a Chanel bag or your dream holiday to Hawaii. Fill the jar with some loose change that will someday give you a happy heart.
  • Spark Interest. You may take your bank account interest for granted since it does not sound significant at all. However, savings is savings and no matter how big or small your savings is, when it adds up at the end of the year, you will be surprised especially if you are saving for a specific trip or a specific object.
  • Track Record. Keep track of how much you spend on different expenses. This will help you have a clearer perspective of your finances. It is also a perfect opportunity to choose expenses that are unnecessary. Every month, choose something which you can turn into savings instead. This will put you in control of your spending habits and enhance your saving techniques.
  • Raise the Roof. In special occasions such as salary raises, you can also put in extra to your savings no matter if it is in a coin bank, an actual bank, or under your mattress. You can also save part of your overtime fees so you can shop more and travel more.
  • Read or not. Reading can actually help you save money. There are specific blogs and websites where you can read about other people’s actual experiences. You can apply what they learned and you become a smarter spender from other people’s experiences. For example, you can find great tips on how to save money when you travel at Coupon Wind.
  • Walk more. Walk whenever you can. It will help you save on gas and possibly on doctors, hospitals, and medicine fees.
  • Prevention is better than cure. One of the avoidable expenses that people have is dental fees. Although it is recommended to see your dentist twice a year, you can also save through preventive measures. This is because you won’t need extra dental services anymore. The same goes to your health. A healthy lifestyle is also a happy lifestyle.

There are many ways on how you can save money so you can shop more or travel more. You just need to set your mind to focus not only on big amounts of savings but also small ones.