Monday, August 30, 2010

You better watch out.

Years ago, a friend of mine introduced to a multilevel business involving gold coins. This business scheme was later exposed to be a pyramiding scheme. The coins were overpriced, and members earn by recruiting other people to invest in gold coins. Needless to say, only the early joiners really profited from this arrangement. The people who joined late found it difficult to recruit new members who would pay for overpriced gold coins.

I would prefer buying gold coins from more trustworthy sources. My father used to buy gold coins from the banks in Hong Kong. I do not know if there are other sources here in the Philippines, but I've found a site which seems to be legitimate -- the US Gold Bureau. Of course, I am still exercising due diligence and investigating the company before I actually plunk down my hard earned money.

Which brings me back to my point. Before investing in any business, make sure that you investigate the company first and check if the business looks plausible. Remember that if it's too good to be true, it probably is.

12 Quick Fixes For Your Household Things

Our long weekend is almost over and I'm like...what weekend? :) Even if I do have other people to do chores for me, my husband and I still feel that there's always something cropping up that need attention. There are also family obligations that need to be met. I'm not really complaining. I just wish there were more hours in a day, because when you have kids, the things that you have to do just doesn't seem to run out. Here is an article that just might help you make things easier:

http://lifestyle.msn.com/your-home/cleaning-organizing/staticslideshowrs.aspx?cp-documentid=20910073

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Still living with mom

As with most young families, we dream of having our own home. But with the present property values, we kinda feel that it's sometimes a dream that is difficult to pursue. Of course, I do not want to be living forever in my mother's house, but for the meantime it does seem like the most practical thing to do. Until we get our own Outer Banks homes, that is (Now that is what I call wishful thinking!)

The pros of living with mom:
  • Shared cost of living.
  • No rent. Nuff said.
  • Babysitting. We trust mom more than anyone else in the world. Most especially with our kids. No nanny could compete with that. Very essential to have peace of mind on who to leave the kids with.
The cons:
  • Difficulty in making our own decisions
  • Less freedom.
  • It's embarassing. Really.
Other pros for us:
  • Kids get to spend time with grandma.
  • My mom's house is very convenient. Near our work, our son's school, hospitals, grocery store, etc.
When are we going to move out? Frankly, I do not know. I guess when the time comes, we'll know.

Buy and sell gold

While gold is a generally good investment, the reason why I think certified gold coins are better than random jewelry is the "sellability".

It's easier to authenticate such coins. They are backed by a certifying body and they contain a specific weight. I don't know about you, but I for one am no expert when it comes to "looking" at precious metals and trying to determine if they are genuine.

Also, companies who sell such coins also buy coins. Like US Gold Bureau. It's like this, you buy at the current rate (at the time that you are buying). If you want to sell, they also buy it at the current rate (at the time you are selling). So if you are savvy enough, you can monitor prices of gold and make a good profit.

Or you can just simply keep them for such a time in the future that you need to liquidate them. Or give them as a gift or legacy to your children.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Home based businesses

My husband and I are looking for a profitable home based business that we could do in addition to our profession.
Why do we prefer home based? These are the reasons that come to mind:
  • Less fees involved with setup.
  • No or less travel involved. Hence less effort, time and money wasted.
  • More time with the family.
  • Easier to control.
  • Some of things used for business can be "borrowed" for family use. Examples would be the telephone connection, internet, fax, computers etc.
Of course there are also cons to these. Like difficulty to delineate between workplace and home. People asking you to do things since you're "home" anyway "without a job". And hiring employees. I don't know about you, but I'm kinda wary of letting strangers into my personal abode.

But then, I think this setup is something that we would like to aim for. We do need an additional source of income as we spend more and more for essentials.

Golden investment

With all the ups and downs our economy is experiencing, it may be wiser to invest in something whose value is not as fickle.

While most investors would generally favor traditional instruments like stocks, bonds, treasury bills and the likes and mutual funds are generally based on these, it is undeniable that it's pretty to difficult the value of these instruments at any given time. In addition to investing in these instruments, it may be wise to also buy gold coins, jewelry or other non-traditional forms of investment. Some invest in art but I am personally wary of doing so because it is not something I am familiar with, hence I will not know if the money I am going to sink in will be worth it and will earn in the long run.

I say gold because it is universally accepted as precious, generally easy to understand (unlike art or stocks or mutual funds) and coins because they are easy to keep, easy to dispose, easy to pass on to your children. Unlike stocks and bonds, there is generally no risk of losing the value over time or when a company goes belly up.

Gold has been around for centuries and will remain to do so. There are sellers (even online) like the United States Gold Bureau who seem reliable and who make such investments so much easier.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Cordless phone

My family has gone through a lot of cordless phones through the years. Our frustration with this kind of phone is that the unit eventually breaks down. There were times when we simply just want to do away with cordless phones, but we eventually buy another one. The reason? It was simply more convenient than one with an attached cord. Sure, it may break down, it may not sound as nice as your wired landline, but it's so easy if you have to stay in a room that does not have a phone. Well, thanks to the internet, now we can check out cordless phone reviews to see what the best is out there. So that this will guide us in searching for the best model for our needs.

Why does my family have such an attachment to cordless phones?
  • Convenient to bring around.
  • No need to put an extension.
  • Easier to pass on to someone else (you know, when someone calls for mom, you have to shout for her to come to the phone. You just hand the phone to her.)
  • No rushing to answer the ringing phone.
What we don't like:
  • It's not as durable as conventional phones.
  • Won't work without charging.
  • Sometimes gets lost.
Obviously, my family still thinks they're worth it. :)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

One week left!

There's still over a week left for the all out Sale at Robinson's malls. I need a new wardrobe badly so it's perfect timing for me. So far I've bought a couple of pants for less than 400 pesos each. I'll be going back for more. I still need more pants. I also want to look for tops. I'm also looking for men's running shorts, pants and leather shoes for my husband. I'm hoping to find them during the sale.

I like this sale! It's not the hurried midnight sale or even the 3 day sale that I'm veering away from because of the chaos. I prefer this month-long sale because the customers are spread out throughout the month, so not much chaos. And more chances for me to find time in my busy schedule to go!


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Keep car in good condition

Last week, I had the awful feeling of being so unprepared if and when my car stalls. I have a basic idea of how to cool an overheated engine, but that's just it: a basic idea. Even if I have all the tools, Mechanix gloves, water, I would still need someone to help me. I do not even dare go out of my car because of too many horror stories about crimes being done to females who drive alone. So much for the independent female.

That's why we have to make sure that our car is in tiptop condition whenever we have to go out, especially on long trips and especially to places which we are not very familiar with. That's to minimize having to deal with problems with the car. I should be doing more frequent maintenance checks so that my car won't be having so many problems in the future.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Keep necessary meds on hand

It's always best to keep some medical stuff -- meds and equipment -- on hand for all those times of sudden need.

Medications that should be kept on hand:
- allergy medications -- diphenhydramine, cetirizine
- pain medications -- paracetamol/acetaminophen, mefenamic acid, ibuprofen
- oral rehydration solutions -- for diarrhea episodes
- antacids
- emergency heart and blood pressure lowering medications for people with heart ailments -- consult your doctor for this
- iodine based wound cleaning solution

Equipment and supplies: You should also learn how to use these --
- first aid kit with gauze, scissors, tape
- ice pack
- thermometer - to check for fever
- blood glucose tester - especially for diabetics
- oxygen tank
- nebulizer - especially for those asthma
- pulse oximeter -- optional but helpful for those who have problems with oxygen saturation
- blood pressure monitor

Of course, the needs would vary from family to family. Do check what your family needs and keep the necessary meds and equipment ready anytime problems would arise.

Friday, August 6, 2010

The birds and the bees

There are talks on incorporating sex ed in school. A lot of parents are protesting about this. For me, it's really no big deal. After all, much of the experimentation with sexuality comes about because of curiosity. More knowledge = less curiosity = less experimentation = less unwanted pregnancies and diseases.

It's a wonder that in today's world where it's considered to be more liberal and less constricting, we still hesitate when we have to talk about what is really a normal physical activity. It's difficult to talk about birth control, medications and supplements like maxoderm and even relationships without tackling the topic itself. And when the conversation veers toward sex, there would be embarrassment and whispers. I have to admit that I'm still not comfortable talking about this in a conversational tone, but I could talk about it when I'm being medical. Like how to use certain birth control techniques.

Sex ed? I say yes, but do tailor it to the age of the students.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Google Docs

Using a netbook with just a 4gig memory is something that I have to get used to. My laptop died on me and we haven't had the chance to have it serviced. I am rather getting used to this small netbook, even with its small screen and the keyboard which is smaller than usual, although it still does not function as well as a regular sized laptop, especially with its limited memory.

I have, however, gotten quite used to this, especially as I have rediscovered Google Docs. It's a great *free* resource, which I can actually use for most what I do on the computer like typing, making spreadsheets and presentations. I also get to store it online so that I can access it anywhere. So I can now make my homeworks, articles, alli reviews, presentation slides, budget spreadsheets, from virtually any computer with an internet connection, even if I didn't bring my flash drive with me.

About Me

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A part time ophthalmologist, part time micro business owner, part time graduate student and FULL TIME MOM struggling to find balance in the confusing world of multitasking :)