Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Hubby finally started moving the baby gear that Swe-cha has outgrown (but we still want to keep) down into the basement - finally!

The boxes have been sitting our in our hallway for so long that I've almost given up getting the space back so now, I'm just so relieved that they're finally out of the way. On my part, I still have to finish sorting his old clothes so I can separate the ones we're keeping and the ones we'll be giving to goodwill.

I'm glad we finally got things going, simple lang pala ang trigger. Sometime last week, I just announced (loudly) that this weekend, I'm going to be hauling the boxes down myself." This works better than "can you move the boxes down to the basement when you have time" line. My fault rin naman, in fairness, because I did say "when you have time". *smile*

Hubby, sweet guy that he is, got up and (predictably) did it because he didn't want to have me doing heavy work.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Hubby in the store

I asked the husband to drop by the store on his way home to pick up some baby wipes and diaper rash ointment.

When he got to the baby store, he gives me a call.

him: "What do I need to get again ?"

me: "Baby wipes and Desitin cream"

him: "What kind of baby wipes ?"

me: "Anything that's unscented."

him: "Pampers ?"

me: "Pwede"

him: "Huggies ?"

me: "Pwede rin, kahit ano nga. Ikaw na bahala. Kahit ano pwede natin gamitin, pero diba ikaw yung maarte na naiinis sa scented wipes ? Ayaw mo yung amoy ? Di naman namimili anak at asawa mo. Ikaw na mag decide kung anong scent ang pwede sa yo or unscented na lang nga, para wala kang reklamo."

Now, this conversation is taking place while I am feeding Swe-cha. So in essence, I'm really talking to both my boys at the same time. Both are demanding my time and attention. At this point, Swe-cha wants to grab the phone already.

him: "Anong mas prefer mo ?"


him: "Ay, sale pala yung huggies, 2 for $12."

me: "edi huggies na"

him: "walang unscented eh"

me: "edi pampers na nga!"

him: "pero merong cucumber and aloe ba ito ? Parang light lang ito"


him: "ilan ? 2 or 4 na lang ?"

me: "sige, 4 na"

him: "ay, 3 na lang nandito. Pano na to ?"


him: [ rummages around the shelves ] "Ay, meron palang unscented, yehey!"

me: "o sige, yan na kunin mo"

him: "huggies na ah ?"


him: "O sige, ako na bahala ha"

Sobrang naubos pasensya ko. Here I am, with a toddler screaming in one ear and I'm struggling to hear hubby through the other ear because he was whispering in the store.

We go through this each and every time we need something. Usually, I just order online & have him just pick up in-store so he does not have to think anymore. I think this is backfiring on me because now, I spoiled him so much that he does not want to think/decide on these little things anymore. Wipes lang, he cannot decide ?

I swear, if gas weren't expensive and if the store weren't out of my way and very convenient for him because it's on his way home ? I'd rather just go buy supplies myself, less stress.

Love ko si hubby. Pero minsan, masarap lang siyang pitikin sa ilong :) Lalo na kung nakikisabay pa siya dito sa bulilit. I can multitask but not when my boys are involved, di ko kaya!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Paint Job

We completed the paint job on the laundry closet and we did a great job. Hubby & I need to pat ourselves on the back.

I tell ya, I get giddy each time I open the doors to the laundry closet and take a deep breath. I love it that much ... but then again, it could also be just the paint fumes having an effect on me.

Anyway,this is how it looked while the shelves were out.

Those lines are from 1 coat of paint ago. The shelves were blocking parts of the wall so those areas weren't painted over by the previous owner last time.

There are also lots of scuff marks on the wall. "Flat" paint was used previously and it isn't really easy to keep clean.

After giving it a nice coat of new paint and getting the shelves installed again. This is how it looks like now.

Note that hubby considered getting new shelving units installed but I vetoed the idea, sayang naman because these wire shelves were still very serviceable and utility closet lang naman to.

Looking at this closet makes me want to continue our other DIY home projects but I really seriously have to get started on my study-plan. Hmm, what to do ?

The most sensible choice is to complete patching up the holes made by the super last year & this year and getting those painted over. Once that is done, studying na and no more tackling other projects. But then again, "sensible" doesn't always give satisfaction.

And last, but not the least, I'd like to share another photo before I end this post.

You see, while in the process of completing this small paint job, the closet wasn't the only thing that got painted.

And no, it wasn't me. He did that to himself. Accidentally, of course.


I did offer to give him a haircut if he couldn't get it out of his hair. Sadly (for me), shampoo did the trick.

Baby Sleep Positions

Found this picture being passed around in Facebook and I just had to share.

Swe-cha's sleeping positions are the:
(1) Booby Trap
(2) H is for Hell
(3) Snow Angel
(4) Donkey Kong

and when he wakes up, he is in the (5) Stalker position.

Sumablay lang sa Jazz Hands :P

Technical Assessment

I went through a technical assessment interview w/ a recruiter that covered C# and SQL this evening and it went fairly well, I think.

I'm not really keen on this company because of the longer-than-usual commute from home but I figured, the technical interview will help me pinpoint areas of weaknesses that I need to improve since I planned on reviewing, studying and possibly, even going for a certification during my downtime (which is NOW). Also, getting some technical exam practices will surely help build up my confidence.

I remember taking my first technical assessment test around this time last year, I was so scared! I had not taken an exam or been tested for anything (technically) since I started working and that was more than a decade ago. I was so scared of failing but since it was a C# test which was only 30 questions long, I wasn't really sure which areas I needed to review so I just threw caution to the wind and told the guy that I have not done any coding in a while (disclaimer).

As it turns out, I got 95% correctly. Ang galing galing ko talaga.... manghula ;) LOL!

Anyway, tonight, I realized that despite the lack of recent practice, I can still hack it as a developer (at least on paper anyway). I do need to brush up on the terminologies - abstract, virtual, interface, override, overload,... - as I realized that I know how and when to use each of those concepts but ask me to define ? .. uh ... I get tongue-tied.

Oh, and I learned about a new SQL Server function "COALESCE " today. Thinking back to the SQL statements, SPs and views that I've written over the years, I cannot think of an instance where I could've used this but I would love to get a chance to use this soon. I remember feeling this excited when I was first learning about SQL's "Partition By" feature too and couldn't wait to use it in an actual application.

*channeling my inner geek*

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Tonight, I tried to express milk and this is all I got, 2.5 oz from both breasts.

And so, I've decided to stop my relationship with my PISA breastpump. We've had a good run and was able to provide my son with breastmilk every single day for almost 25 months.

I just found it appropriate that I produced the same amount of milk the first time I pumped and the last time I pumped :)

Thankfully, Swe-cha is handling his transition to fresh cow's milk extremely well. No complaints at all. Am also thankful that we were able to fill up a deep-freezer with frozen breastmilk so we'll still be reaping the benefits of bm for the next several months even though I've already stopped production.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Nice Guy Handyman (2)

The main reason why we called in a handyman was to come in and repair our 2nd bathroom upstairs. It had a huge gaping hole in the ceiling (can't find the pic I took last month) where the sheetrock was already rotted from steady drip from the hole(s) in the bathroom exhaust vent.

Jeff replaced the venting system w/ aluminum coated vent material, set it up so that there is some sort of a trap (much like a sink trap), patched the ceiling back up, tried to replicate the swirls (didn't too good of a job there, but hey, it's not like people spend a lot of time staring at the ceiling to compare swirls) and painted it up again (he matched the existing paint color). He even left the leftover paint behind for us so we can use it in the future if we need to get more work done.

We also wanted to replace our tub spout whose water diverter had broken off years ago.

It still works, you just have to sort of stick your finger into the hole in the spout. This is okay most of the time but when we have family & visitors come over and you have to explain how to do it... eh.. medyo kahiya.

And while we were doing this, hubby wanted the shower head replaced too.

This is supposed to be easy but the last time we tried doing this ourselves, we broke the shower arm off & left a piece inside the pipe behind the shower wall, we had to pay $150 for a plumber to come & fix it.

I figured, it was worth it to just get a professional to do things right rather than have to pay through the roof to repair what we botched up.

The spout was difficult to do. He had to cut off the existing pipe & solder a new one in. He had to do this a few times before the spout fit, looked and worked right. This wasn't a surprise because we had tried to replace the spout lots of times before. We bought different brands, types, shapes and sizes but none fit the existing pipe.

Lastly, the fill valve in the toilet is also cracked and leaking water big time. We've had to turn the water to this toilet off because water was constantly running all the time and would leak down to the floor.

This, too, is supposedly easy to do but the mechanism inside the tank is stuck to the porcelain due to calcium (hard water buildup). I didn't want to force anything because the last time we (okay... it was me!) did this, the tank cracked and we had to replace the whole thing.

Jeff replaced the toilet tank fill valve ($12 for the part) and the water hose connector ($6 for the part). I checked prices for the parts and his were reasonably-priced.

Nice Guy Handyman (1)

We're almost done w/ the home repairs, we've gotten the major fixes done, at least. My next few posts will be about the various repairs that were done to our place by Jeff, the Nice Guy Handyman.

This post will be about our laundry area (o sige na, ... closet).

Problem 1: Existing ductwork is made of plastic, this is no longer up to current building codes and is a fire hazard. Clothes dryers need to be vented, the vent goes into the wall, up the ceiling and should go all the way out of the building/house.

The outer ductwork is aluminum coated (up to code) but the ductwork inside the wall is made of plastic (outdated & could be a fire hazard because lint & dirt collects inside).

Problem 2: As luck would have it, it turns out that somewhere along the way, one of this condo's previous owners decided to cut off the ductwork in the ceiling and attached this vent to one of the roof struts.

Yes, our clothes dryer has been venting heat, moisture and lint into our ceiling all these years. We didn't know until Jeff went into the ceiling to check it out. The insulation around this vent was wet.

Problem 3: See the water hookup ? That hose is made of rubber. Rubber hoses (non-metal clad ones) should be replaced every 5 years and I recently heard from a friend that some condo associations are requiring owners to use metal-clad hoses in their units already.

Problem 4: See that faucet w/ no hose ? For some reason, our washer wasn't hooked up to the hot water, it's no biggie but I decided to just let Jeff check if the hot water source is live and if it is, to hook the washer up to the hot water.

Work done:
Day 1: Jeff replaced the plastic vent with aluminum coated venting material and connected it back to the ductwork (already exists) that leads out of the bldg. He installed metal clad hoses for the washing machine water hookups, patched up the holes that he made in the closet (for installing the new vents).

That night, hubby decided to cover the ugly walls up of the closet with some paint.

I wasn't really feeling up to it and I felt it was a waste of time since this was a utility closet anyway but I suddenly remembered that we still have that unused gallon of white paint left over from when we were doing some DIY work in 2009 (we stopped when we found out I was pregnant with Swe-cha).

An hour later, we had finished painting the upper portion of the closet. We only painted up to the part where the shelves were going to be installed, we figured we can continue the rest later.

I'm glad that hubby sort of insisted that we do this because the new coat of paint makes everything look so much cleaner and nicer. This is how it looks after Jeff put the shelves back up on day 2.

Now, I'm much much happier, after having done a couple of loads of laundry using HOT / WARM water :)

I'm hoping that we can finish the rest of the painting soon so this doesn't look half-done (and I know us... the longer we put things off, the lesser the chances of it ever getting done at all).

For the vent work, Jeff charged us 1/2 of what the other company quoted us. He also only charged us a little bit extra for the water hose replacement. I'm glad that we had this fixed because the existing vents were almost choking w/ lint (we really have to get the vents cleaned more often) and all that moisture being vented into our ceiling ?... can't be good.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


And yet again the saying that "when it rains, it pours" is proving true in our home.

Yesterday, I made an appointment w/ that Nice Guy Handyman come over to check out the repairs that needed to be done in our house:
- vent replacement (the leaking vent in the bathroom exhaust)
- vent replacement (the dryer vent w/c is still made of plastic, hence, a fire hazard)
- cut out the rotted part of the ceiling & cover it up, apply swirly-textured finish to match the rest of the ceiling and then paint it
- replace the spout & showerhead in 2nd bath, this includes cutting out existing pipe & soldering a new piece in to match the length of the new spout
- fix cracked mechanism in 2nd bath toilet

But before the guy arrived, the bldg superintendent was knocking at my door. Yes, there was a leak again. And before he even started checking things out, he was already explaining to me that if it were my responsibility, I should do the repairs quickly while the damage in the unit below (same unit that was damaged by my leaking windows) gets any bigger.

The next hour was nerve-wracking. Superintendent cut holes in my ceiling and my wall and we started turning faucets/showers in the 2 upstairs bath on and off. Water started pouring down the drain - unfortunately, water poured IN and OUT of the drain (both surfaces).

Luckily, the leak is NOT our responsibility. Super just came back today to fix the broken pipe. Sad lang because he had to cut a hole in my red wall and when he comes back to close the wall, he will just patch it up - no paint job included.

But here comes the next part, while checking out that huge leak, they (superintendent and the unit owner below) happened to notice a water stain in my ceiling a few feet further but didn't see any leaks coming out. Last night, hubby stared at the pipes while I turned things on/off and that's when we found out that there is a leak in our shower.


Ayoko na.

I guess we were lucky, in a way, that things didn't start breaking down until now. I've been here 7 years already, after all.

Ah. Teka.

7 year itch kaya ito between me & my home ?

Saturday, January 7, 2012


We finally received our Costco coupon book in the mail, this is the first since we got our membership last October. I've been bumming coupons* from my sister for the last 2 (or was it 3 ?) years because I wanted to make tipid and didn't want to pay for our own membership so we shared w/ a friend's.

Friend eventually moved and found a different warehouse club that was more convenient to their new place so we had to get our own membership na. So far, it (the fee we paid) doesn't seem too bad. But then again, last year, I had that part time thing.

* Sis and I had a good method, I'd check out the costco coupons as soon as they get posted online on blogs and if there are items that I'm interested in, Achi clips coupons from her coupon book and sends me some. Fortunately, all the coupons for all products have the same code so it doesn't really matter if you hand in the actual coupon for the product or for something else (in case there are items that we both want).