Thursday, November 12, 2015

Taking Gifting to the Next Level

Yipiy! Christmas time is near! There would be food, gifts, and...oh, wait. I just remembered that I'm already a mom and the one who will prepare for the food and buy the gifts for my family would be me! Oh, I do miss the days when I was young and  all I have to do is to wait and open my gifts on Christmas. *Sigh* Those were the days. 

I also remember my dad always telling me, "Bonch (bunso + chubby), it's Christmas! Time to be healthy, wealthy, and wise!" I really didn't get it at first. All I thought was it came from a song somewhere and he just kept on telling me that during the holidays. I really didn’t give it much thought because I all I know is that he was just teasing me. 

Me and my dad (Christmas, 1988)

But after so many years, I think I’m starting to get what my dad was telling me. Aside from the fact that it was taken from Benjamin Franklin’s poem that says, “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a person healthy, wealthy, an wise,” there's more to it than just a children's poem. So why tell me this every Christmas?  Was there a mathematical equation for this? He was an engineer after all. Unfortunately, my dad is no longer here for me to ask him, but after thinking it through, I realized he’s a genius and I actually used his words in my Christmas wish list.

My Christmas Wish List

1. Time to be Healthy.  As a child, I actually didn’t care what I ate because I was carefree. But now as a mom,  my children, my husband, my family, my co-workers rely on me which is why I really need to watch what I eat.  I want to make my family happy and do my work efficiently. And I can’t do all of those when I’m sick.  Now I know why my dad always ate fish, lean meat, fruits and veggies.   So for this category, my wish list would be ANY of the following:

Any one of these fruit baskets from SM Supermarkets would be divine! I could make fruit juices, fruit smoothies for the kids, or even make a  table centerpiece out of them during Noche Buena and then eat them afterwards :D There's just no excuse not having a fruit basket during the holidays.
And, of course, any one of these wine hampers would also make a great addition to our Noche Buena. Wine is indeed good for the heart and fights cholesterol. It's a perfect match for meaty meals for adults. It's a definite addition to my wish list indeed. :)  These hampers are also available in SM Supermarket branches nationwide.

2. Time to be Wealthy. This is a tricky one. Wealthy simply means rich or prosperous. I asked myself do I need to have a lot of money to be wealthy?  Maybe. But what if I have lots of money, but I also have lots of bills to pay? Then our money would just end up in paying the bills. This happened when my husband had his Christmas bonus and every peso just went to paying all our credit card bills. So being wealthy doesn’t just mean having lots of money, but it also involves having the discipline to spend our money wisely. 

So since Christmas is near, I don't want to overspend. I want to have a card that I can use so that I won't be needing to bring a lot of cash while shopping. I want a hassle-free, pre-loaded card that has a fixed amount to budget my spending.  And after much deliberation, this is the card/s that I want for Christmas:

 If I were given one of these, I'll be one happy and "wealthy" mommy shopper! :D It's like having the freedom to buy stuff for the house, groceries, clothes or toys for the kids, school supplies, anything! I can even use them during the holiday sale! It's like the saying goes, "A wise man should have money on his head, not in his heart." :D  

3.   Time to be Wise.  This is probably a long-term wish for the sake of my family’s well-being.  Aside from being wise enough to maintain all the good habits I have learned for my family in terms of health and wealth, it’s also wise if I look beyond into the future to protect my loved ones from fortuitous events.  That’s why as my final wish in my Christmas wish list, it would be getting an insurance plan from our current bank, BDO. I would probably aim for the home insurance first and then auto, and then the rest follows. 

So that's my Christmas wish list.  I do hope I got my dad's message right. Either way, this list makes me happy and satisfied :) 

Gift Ideas for Loved Ones

Now, my gift ideas for my loved ones this year would be easy. The trick is asking them at least 3 months earlier on what items do they want on Christmas. They don't know mommy is making a list already. 

1. For my 8-year-old son, there's only one type of toy that makes him busy and have fun at the same time - LEGO! And since Star Wars is very hot nowadays because of its upcoming movie this Christmas, he was very persistent in having this particular item: 

Lego Star Wars T-16 Skyhopper 75081
Plus, I would give him an additional Toy Kingdom gift card worth P500 for him to look forward to visiting his favorite store even after the holidays. 

Sorry! I just can't resist not posting this picture here. He just loves his favorite toy store :D
2. For my 3-year-old daughter, I can definitely tell what she wants. The one thing that will keep her busy and have fun at the same time is Play Doh! So this Christmas, I will give her this: 

 I decided to give her Play Doh because the last time we went to the mall, there was a Play Doh play area where kids can play freely as long as they buy a can of Play Doh that only costs P49. I bought 2 cans and my two kids were just there happily playing for 2 hours. I want to bring home her playfulness and creativity through Play Doh and I'm pretty sure I'll be joining her. The clay really does bring out the child in me. 

As a bonus for the two of them, I plan to take them to SM Southmall after Christmas and give them both an unlimited play pass to Dave's Fun House where they can play with other kids as long as they like. ^_^ 

3. And for my dear husband, there's only one thing that makes him happy and that is watching movies. We used to watch a movie in Director's Club where are comfortable Lazy Boy seats with unlimited pop corn, and he said he has found his favorite movie house. 

So this Christmas, I will give him an E-Plus card loaded with P2,000 that he can use whenever he wants to watch a movie. Of course, I'm always with him when he goes to the movies. :D By paying using the E-Plus card, he can earn points, and even have freebies and discounts. It's better than paying cash on the movies. 

And since my husband is also a collector of Gundam toys, I thought I'd surprise him with one of his favorite Gundam models hoping it would put a big smile on that cute face of his. 

Bandai Deathscythe Hell Ver EW 1/100 Master Grade


Giving Back to Others 

Now that I'm done planning on my wish list and what to give to my family, it's time to plan how to give back to others because the essence of Christmas is indeed sharing your blessings to other people to spread the happiness. 

I originally planned on visiting a certain orphanage and donate our old toys, but I was having second thoughts because my son's old toys are broken already and I think the kids will be saddened to have such toys.  So when I saw SM Christmas Bears of Joy program, I was so delighted and relieved that they made it easier for people to reach out to different orphanages. 

For just P200, I keep a bear and another bear goes to different orphanages and charitable institutions. If I can, I'll buy 10 bears or more. It's much better than donating broken toys because the bears look really cute and they're brand new. Plus, it reaches out not just one orphanage, but a lot, so I will definitely support this project hoping to make other kids happy. 


Of course, my charity doesn't stop there.  I would like to extend my help to the needy and that includes animals. I plan on donating at least P1,000 to PAWS, a registered non-profit organization which is dedicated to the protection and the promotion of humane treatment of all animals. PAWS continue to seek volunteers and donations to help cover the costs of rescuing, treatment and rehabilitating animals under their care. And I really support their good cause. 

For more info about PAWS, you may check out their website at 

So there you have it! I have blogged all my plans for Christmas.  If you haven't decided yet on what to do, where to go, or what to buy for Christmas, check out the  Merry SM Christmas campaign links below that might help you plan your holidays.

For more updates about this year’s “Merry SM Christmas” campaign, visit SM’s official Christmas microsite ( and follow its official social media accounts at Facebook (, Twitter (, and Instagram (; and get an insider access to all the fun happenings at SM Supermalls nationwide through Viber ( Shoppers can actively share their holiday merriments inside the SM Supermalls by posting their photos on social media and adding the hashtag #MerrySMChristmas2015.

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