January, 2013

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7 Family Rituals MUST DO to Add Meaning to Every Day

By Asha Dornfest | Babble – Thu, 10 Jan 2013

Whether religious or not, many people consider ritual and tradition to be an important (and treasured) part of life. The word ritual has such a serious ring to it, but rituals can also be simple, comforting and fun. And now that we’re past the distraction of the holidays, it’s easier to think about ritual in its less-loaded, everyday form: the little things you can do each day, each week, or each season to insert a pause for reflection or appreciation. Rituals need not be time-consuming (or all that serious) to be special. As long as they’re predictable and important to your family, they will be meaningful. Here are 7 ideas to consider. See if one resonates for you. – By Asha Dornfest

Light a candle

Photo by: Brendan DeBrincat
1. Light a candle
Lighting candles at mealtime naturally quiets things down and encourages reflection. (Unless your kids are toddlers or pyromaniacs, of course.)


Give thanks

Photo by: Ali Edwards
2. Give thanks
Expressing gratitude before you eat — such a simple way to pause. No need to include religion if that’s not your thing.


Friday night dessert

Photo by: Benny Mazur
3. Friday night dessert
We make Friday nights special by serving a treat. It encourages our kids to invite friends over instead of making plans, and it takes dessert out of the “daily” realm and into the “special.”


Change of venue

Photo by: Danny Sullivan
4. Change of venue
Dinner in the living room. Sleepover in the basement. “Predictable variety” is exciting.


Weekly family fun night

Photo by: Morgan
5. Weekly family fun night
Movie night, game night, quiet reading night…whatever you enjoy.


Scheduled phone calls

Photo by: Julie Corsi
6. Scheduled phone calls
Regular calls to the grandparents or far-flung friends maintains connections and adds rhythm to the week


Coming of age rituals

Photo by: Etsy/HouseHoldWords
7. Coming of age rituals
Monthly growth chart recordings, weekly allowance…these small actions let a kid know she’s growing up.

How to make a choice you’ll never regret

By Zoe Ruderman | Cosmopolitan – Mon, 14 Jan 2013

Jennifer Lawrence is now a household name after she accepted the lead role in The Hunger Games movies, based on the best-selling novels by Suzanne Collins. But, even though she knew playing tough-girl Katniss Everdeen would make her career, Jennifer recently confessed that she waited for three days to accept the role because she was stressed about how it would change her life.

Like Jennifer, we all have to make tough decisions. Sure, they might not involve accepting an offer to star in a sure-to-be blockbuster movie, but making any big big move is freaky. Follow these expert tips to guarantee the next decision you make will be the best one for you.

1. Go with Your Gut

A study found that when making simple choices (like what cereal to buy), it pays to be rational. But when it comes to bigger ones (like which job to take), you’re better off listening to your instincts. That’s not to say you should buy a car on a whim, but if you have weighed the pros and cons and still can’t reach a conclusion, let your snap judgment be the tiebreaker and go with what just feels right.

2. Put Down the Mojito

There’s a reason Google Mail Goggles was invented: Cocktails make it easier to act. Although one drink can relax you while you’re agonizing over a choice, more than that can cloud your judgment.

3. Sleep on It…but Just for One Night

Researchers say unconscious deliberation (i.e., getting shut-eye) can help you analyze your options and come to a conclusion, which is why people will often tell you to sleep on it. However, belaboring a decision for too long means you aren’t comfortable with any of the choices you have before you and you need to consider alternatives.

4. Get into a Stress-Free State

Go for a haircut right after you are laid off and you could wind up looking less than amazing. The reason being, we tend to act rashly when we’re nervous or upset. Research suggests that anxiety not only makes it more difficult to settle on something but also actually makes you more likely to come to the wrong conclusion. So if you’re fighting with your boyfriend while choosing between two apartments, try to resolve the disagreement quickly so you can make a more clearheaded resolution. And since one study found that stress has a residual effect, wait a few days after you’ve kissed and made up before forking over your security deposit.

5. Talk It Over with a Select Few

Chatting about your predicament with close friends, your mom, or whomever you trust to give an honest opinion is a good idea. Hashing out your options allows you to further process the decision, and hearing others’ perspectives (whether you agree with them or not) can help you arrive at a more informed – and better – conclusion.

6. But Avoid Discussing It with Everyone

So you know that running your decision past a few key people in your life is smart. But it’s best to keep your hairstylist, trainer, and barista out of it. Soliciting too many opinions – especially from people who don’t know you that well – can leave you with lots of conflicting (not to mention bad) advice. Before seeking someone’s opinion, ask yourself if the person is really in a position to know what’s best for you. If the answer is no, keep it to yourself.

7. Consider the Long-Term Consequences

Some decisions make short-term sense but in the long run can be disastrous. For example, telling your guy you cheated on him once three years ago may relieve your guilt, but it will probably cause him to break up with you. Similarly, doing things like sitting in the sun or having unprotected sex often can feel right in the moment, but these toxic behaviors have serious health ramifications.

A good rule of thumb: Play out each possible scenario in your mind…and consider the outcome (on your health, on a friend’s or boyfriend’s feelings, on your credit-card bill – whatever) before making a controversial move.

8. Don’t Leave It Up to Chance

It can be dangerous to make a major, life-changing choice based on what your horoscope instructs you to do. While it’s definitely fun to let these things influence small decisions (which dress to wear on a date, if you should ask out a guy), the bigger stuff (dumping your boyfriend, moving across the country) should not be left up to the stars.

9. Blow Off Bullies Who Are Pressuring You

When grappling with a decision, it can be easy to be swayed in one direction by someone who has self-serving motives – whether it’s a salesperson talking you into buying a pair of shoes you can’t afford or your parents being all up in your grill about going to a particular grad school. Distance yourself from the person or people pressuring you while you sort out your thoughts. And if that’s not possible, pretend you’re advising a friend on the matter, which will help you act more logically and guilt-free.

10. Remember That You Can’t Always Use the Past to Predict the Future

Especially when you’re making a choice that will seriously affect your bank account or lifestyle, it’s important not to rely simply on experience. In our rapidly changing world, experts recommend assessing each new opportunity with a fresh mind-set. What might have been a shrewd move a few years ago – like buying a house or leaving your 9-to-5 gig to start up your own business – could wreak havoc on your life today.

9 money-saving tips for the New Year

By Michelle Ruiz, Financially Fit | Cosmopolitan – Thu, 03 Jan 2013

We know: Your New Year’s resolution is to get so toned, that you’ll look like you’re a part of the 2018 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. But getting financially fit is almost as popular a resolution as hitting the gym, according to a new study. Cosmopolitan columnist and LearnVest CEO Alexa von Tobel gives us her money-saving tips.

1. Make a Three-Year Plan
“Think three years out: Where do you want to be financially? It might be to pay off student loans, or credit card debt, or buy an apartment. Figure out how much you will need to achieve it, and then compute how much you will need to save each year, month, and week.”

2. Get Organized
“Run your finances like you run you social life! Set up calendar alerts for your bills. Make a separate email address for your bills so they never get lost in the shuffle. Plan for the year ahead-I do my taxes every January and buy all of my holiday gifts in September.”

3. Follow the 50/20/30 Rule
“Allocate 50 percent of your salary to essentials-rent, groceries, transportation to and from work, and utilities. Put 20 percent to your future-savings and retirement. 30 percent goes to whatever the hell you want! Chanel pumps?”

4. Build Your Freedom Fund
“Set aside at least six months of life expenses so if you lost your job tomorrow, you’d be able to stay afloat. It’s a freedom fund because it also allows you to walk out of a job you hate or have the freedom to leave a relationship.”

5. Prioritize
“Think about the most valuable places to put your dollars. For example, if your credit card debt costs you 17 percent interest and your savings account only earns you one percent interest, pay off the debt before you focus on saving.”

6. Protect Yourself
“The number-one case of bankruptcy is being improperly insured. Make sure you have adequate renters insurance, disability insurance, and car insurance. People can be so thoughtful about saving a few dollars on things like groceries, but they might have blind spots to the tune of thousands of dollars.”

7. Assign Short-Term Deadlines
“Start out with simple goals and timetables. For example, try to save $1,000. Or say, ‘This month, I’m getting life insurance.'”

8. Go Social
“Tell people-whether it’s your best friend or your boyfriend or your mom-about your goals. It’s social reinforcement and will help you stick to it.”

9. Find a Money Doctor
Approaching your finances-especially debt-can feel paralyzing. The best thing you can do is reach out for professional help-an unbiased expert who’s not trying to sell you anything can help you make a plan.

10 ways to make 2013 your best year yet

Realbuzz| Wed, 02 Jan 2013

Do you want 2013 to be the best it can be? Of course you do! It’s not as hard as you might think. Here’s some simple steps you can take to make sure this is your best year yet.


Before you do anything else, it might be a good idea to start the year with a clean slate by detoxing. It’s likely you over-indulged throughout Christmas and New Year, so consider cutting back on alcohol and unhealthy foods in January. There are even certain foods you can add to your diet to speed up the detox process, including lemons, which are packed full of antioxidants such as vitamin C, and ginger, which improves digestion.

Get organized

Are you currently living a hectic life? Living in the moment can be exciting, but take it too far and you’ll start forgetting family birthdays, missing appointments, and running out of food in the house. Adding a little order and organization into your life can go a long way, and you’ll soon find yourself becoming far more efficient. This will give you the freedom to relax, knowing that everything in your life is under control.

Make small changes

One problem with the majority of New Year’s resolutions is that they’re too ambitious. As much as you’d like to, you’re probably not going to lose twenty pounds by the end of January, and that’s okay. If you set daunting targets for yourself, you’ll just end up depressed when you don’t meet them. Instead, focus on small, achievable changes. You’ll have a far better chance of succeeding, and they’ll soon add up to contribute to more major improvements.

Get out of the house

Everything would be a lot simpler if you could sit at home all day and let good things come to you, but sadly that’s not how life works. If you want to have a good year, you’re going to have to get out there and make it happen. Whether it’s starting a new hobby, taking a class, or simply going out for food once a week, getting out of the house will help you meet new people, try new things, and generally have a more fulfilling year.

Ditch a vice

Vices; we’ve all got them, and we all want rid of them. However, trying to give up every single bad habit you have all at once is never going to end well. It’s far more realistic to pick one vice (preferably the worst one) and try to give it up. Make sure you tell as many people as possible that you’re trying to kick it, so that you’re accountable to someone other than just yourself if you slip up.

Get promoted

You’d be amazed how many people think they deserve a promotion at work but do absolutely nothing about it. If this sounds like you, it’s time to take action. Getting promoted is a great way of boosting your happiness and making your time at work more fulfilling. Confidently make your boss aware that you are interested in taking on more responsibilities, and outline why you’d be well suited to the role. Remember – if you don’t ask, you don’t get.

Meet someone new

If you’re perfectly comfortable spending time on your own then that’s fine. However, if you want to find love, there’s no time like the new year. During the next year try to socialise as much as possible, meeting plenty of new people along the way. If you have confidence issues, try to remember that other people are probably just as nervous as you and will be flattered that somebody new has made the effort to talk to them.

Get on top of your finances

Money troubles can cause a serious downer on your whole year. Around 80 per cent of people regularly worry about money in their day to day lives, which can lead to stress and even more severe health problems. Saving money is easier said than done, but you can make a good start by drawing up a budget in January for the year ahead. It’s also wise to identify areas where you can cut back on expenditure, or find cheaper alternatives.

Think positively

One of the most effective steps towards improving your year doesn’t even require lifting a finger. Approaching every situation with a ‘glass half full’ mentality will go a long way towards improving your year, and it’s something absolutely everybody can do. Happiness and optimism aside, it’s even been proven that thinking positively can have tangible health benefits, including reductions in stress levels and improved cardiovascular health.

Learn from your mistakes

We hate to break this to you, but you will make mistakes next year. They might be trivial, or they might be life changing, but either way you will make them. Accepting this fact will make your life a whole lot easier. Rather than getting worked up over things you do wrong, ask yourself how they could have been avoided, and what you will do to prevent them in the future.

Laureano di Trevi Towers

Affordable, inner-city, mixed-use condominium development that sits on a 5,000 sqm property and strategically located along Pasong Tamo, The Laureano di Trevi Towers is a unique condominium that harnesses the wind to ensure natural ventilation year-round. Trevi is within distance of Greenbelt, Makati Cinema Square, top notch schools and universities like Don Bosco, Assumption and Colegio de San Agustin. Near premier medical institutions like Makati Medical Center.

The Trevi Towers adapt the primary concept of energy-efficient design in a development that provides all the necessities in a typical urban lifestyle.

Location Map

The Trevi Towers is accessible from the north and south via the Sergio Osmena Highway (SLEX), and from the east, via the Antonio Arnaiz Road. It is just a few minutes away from the Makati Central Business District, top-notch schools, premier medical institutions, and practically, important developments and conveniences.

Floor Plans and Home Details

Trevi boasts of a modern architectural style complemented by an energy-efficient design which utilizes ventilation gratings, sun sheds and heat reflective exterior closures. Each tower is purposefully arranged to enhance natural ventilation and lighting while providing unobstructed views of the Makati skyline and the Manila Bay sunset.