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LIST | Persons who can go out during mandatory COVID community quarantine

On Wednesday, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases revealed a complete list of persons exempted f...

Saturday, December 23, 2017

LIST | Holiday Mall Hours in SM Supermalls 2017

Wondering what time will SM Mall of Asia close on December 25? Planning ahead for your holiday rush shopping spree in SM Supermalls? 

Well, here’s a complete list of SM Mall opening and closing hour schedules from December 23, 2017 to January 1, 2018.

Image Courtesy: SM Investments Corporation

Metro Manila

SM By The Bay

Monday - Thursday: 4:00 pm - 12:00 mn
Friday - Saturday: 4:00 pm - 2:00 am
Sunday: 4:00 pm - 12:00 mn

SALE | Five (5) Metro Manila Sales You Should Not Miss

It's that time of the year again when people flock to malls to purchase extravagantly and gather in groups to hang out and spend the holidays with their loved ones. Siyempre, who wouldn't love shopping when the things you love and need are put on sale, right?

Filipinos of legal age surely wouldn't want to miss on such sales. So I have enlisted five (5) of the ongoing holiday sales you must check out.

1. LEGO uBer Sale

Have you made your Christmas List and checked it twice? Why not make a trip to a LEGO Certified Store near you to complete what's left in your list? Get an ADDITIONAL 10% off ON TOP of the 20% off on ALL regular LEGO sets until December 31 only, when you present your LEGO VIP card! Don’t have a LEGO VIP card yet? Get yourself one at any LEGO Certified Store now! It’s FREE!

LIST | Holiday Mall Hours in Robinsons Malls 2017

Still looking for Christmas gifts to give to your love ones? Wanting to frequent Divisoria, but finding it difficult to go there 'cause it's too far? Is there a nearby Robinsons mall in your area?  Why not check out Robinsons Malls' wide array of gift items?

Here is a list of the holiday mall hours in Robinsons Malls branches before 2017 ends. All photos  are courtesy of Robinsons Malls.

1. Mall Hours: Robinsons Place Manila

2. Mall Hours: Robinsons Forum

3. Mall Hours: Robinsons Novaliches

4. Mall Hours: Robinsons Metro East

5. Mall Hours: Robinsons Town Mall Malabon

6. Mall Hours: Robinsons Galleria

7. Mall Hours: Robinsons Magnolia

8. Mall Hours: Robinsons Otis

Friday, July 14, 2017

STEPS | How to get a police clearance in Manila Police District (Updated 2017)

In 2015, I posted in my main blog a simplified list of steps on how to get a police clearance in Manila, particularly in Manila Police District (MPD). Now, I am posting a revised version of the steps plus the associated police clearance application payments.

Siyempre, we use the police clearance as part of a list of requirements need when applying for something in the bank, at work, or in a government facility. In this post, I will be detailing the steps on how a police clearance (certificate and ID card) can be obtained if you are near Manila Police District.

Location of MPD:

Image Courtesy: Google Maps
Located along UN Avenue in Ermita, Manila, its nearest landmark include Manila Medical Center (Manila Med) so if you're riding LRT 1, just stop at UN Avenue station.

Requirements for getting a police clearance in MPD:
  • CASH - you'll have to spend at least 300 Php, the breakdown of which is as follows 
    • Cashier 1 (I really don't know what payment here is for): 100 Php 
    • Cashier 2 (beside Cashier 1 for pPolice clearance ID card and certificate): 200 Php 
    • Manual fingerprinting donation: at least 1 Php 
    • Take note that two receipts should be issued to you, one from each cashier


You start at the small entrance on the left side of the MPD complex where you'll see a small booth with men handing out an application form and people writing and waiting for their clearances to be released. So, this area is the registration and waiting area at the same time.

1. Fill out the application or registration form.
    Time allotment: 3-5 minutes. This varies depending on your writing speed

Police Clearance Application Form 2017
After filling in the necessary information, proceed to the cashiers at the left passageway. You'll just have to follow the trail of how the booths are arranged.

2. Pay 100 Php in the first cashier.

   Time allotment: 2-3 minutes. Just bring the exact amount para mabilis hehe. Don't forget the receipt 'cause it will be checked.

So I checked the first receipt (refer to photo above). It's issued by the Office of the Treasurer pala. Maybe it's a contribution to the city's coffers associated with safety? I don't know haha.

3. Proceed to the next booth to pay 200 Php for the police clearance ID card and certificate.
    Time allotment: 2-3 minutes. Again bring the exact amount para walang problema hehe  and don't forget the second receipt.

Here's the second receipt you should have received after passing the cashier booths located adjacent to each other.

4. Manual fingerprinting.
  You will then get inside the Main Area for processing everything and look for the manual fingerprinting area. There you'd have your hands dirty with ink. Hence, the guys handling that section will be ASKING you to DONATE for their wet wipes. Show your form and receipts to them.
    Time allotment: 2-3 minutes
5. Data encoding.
    Once done with step 4, look back and you'll see chairs. Line up (by sitting) and wait for your turn to show your application form to the data encoders. They will have computers with screens facing you so that you'd be able to double check the information they're typing. Make sure there's no problem in the information they inputted.
    Time allotment: 3-5 minutes
6. Face capture (photo) and digital signature input, plus biometrics.
   When you're finally done with the data encoding, the encoder will give you a printout. Give this together with your receipts to the section for photo capture, digital signature and biometrics. Basta andiyan lang yan, madaling mahanap, promise.
    Here, the facilitator will ask you to remove any earrings, eyewear, etc so that your bare face will be placed on your police clearance ID. Here, the facilitator will request that you place your right thumb on the biometric scanner four (4) times to record your thumb print. It's also in this section wherein you'd have to sign digitally.
    Take note that your receipts and the printout handed to you will not be given back in this area. Why? You will be asked to go back to the entrance or waiting area. There you'd just have to wait for a few minutes so that your police clearance ID  and certificate will be released.
    Time allotment: 5-10 minutes

7. Releasing area. WAIT.
   Here, you'd just have to wait until your name is called. Releasing of my clearance ID and certificate only took 5 minutes hehe. It's really fast. Well, I guess it depends on the number of people who are there. Nung time ko, Friday morning, konti lang tao.
    Time allotment: 5-10 minutes

There it is! Swabe ba? Hope you'd be able to get your police clearance certificate and ID in the Manila Police District super fast. Please be aware though that the duration it would take might depend on whether or not there's a lot of people

If this post has been helpful to you, hope you'd take time to support my kids (blogs). Please like Spotlight Philippines and Manila LifeBoxfollow by email, or follow me on Facebook for more updates. :)

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

SALE | Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street Book Sale 2017

Here's another treat for Filipino bookworms out there! 

In celebration of its 10th years of bringing together books and book lovers, Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street has been offering an Atrium Sale since July 1. It will be selling great reads for as low as 50 Php until July 31, 2017! Grab this chance!

Just visit Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street! Enjoy finding great reads!

SALE | Warehouse Sale - All Books at 20 Php Each!

Attention to all book and hard print lovers out there! Your much awaited book sale will be happening soon!

Books for Less will be selling all of its books for P20 each! Yup, you're reading that right. I guess the answer to the question, "saan aabot ang bente pesos mo?" can now be answered.

The sale will be held from August 1 to 31, 2017 (except August  7, 14, 21 & 28), every Tuesdays to Sundays. Just head over to the Books for Less warehouse in 643 Frankfurt St., Mercedes Avenue, San Miguel, Pasig.

Don't forgo this opportunity! Be there! It's a month-long chance to find great reads!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

APPS | Snapcart: Snap Receipts, Get Cashbacks

The frugal person in me has once again reigned due to the recent increase in expenses I had to deal with during the past months. First, I'd have to blame it on the spike in my electricity wattage consumption because of daily night-time use of our  old air conditioner. Shet sobrang init; abot singit! Second, I've been experiencing bad days in school and what better way is there to address this than to stress eat? I would often buy lots of food and chips haha. So it's safe to say I've gained some weight haha!

Spending more than the amount I used to, I became more aware how difficult life is for a lot of people. That's why I looked for ideas on how I could save some cash or at least get some rebates or cashback from purchasging (ergo, shopping). Luckily (or not haha),  I came across this app called Snapcart.

Essentially, Snapcart allows us buyers to get cashback from our purchase receipts. Snap receipts, earn cashback. There are a number of store receipt types allowed by Snapcart and these are enlisted far below. What we just need to do is click on the "snap" button when you open Snapcart. This will switch on our phone's camera and allow us to take clear (emphasis talaga on readable kasi they reject the snapshot if it's not readable) shots of our receipts.

Meanwhile, stores subscribed to Snapcart like Robinsons Supermarket, Savemore, SM Hypermarket and Mercury Drugstore are given insights on our purchases as buyers or shoppers. The information obtained from the receipts will give them what our preferences are when it comes to brands, what time we usually shop, how healthy we eat, etc.

Here are what you need to know about Snapcart:
1. How much is the cashback? How to maximize cashback?

The amount of cash rebated back to you will depend on how much your purchase was. Check out the Snapcart receipts amount range and you'll easily determine how much the cashback will be once they've processed the receipts you snapped.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

HEALTH | Am I Depressed? Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Filipinos are known for their resilience and perseverance. This is mostly represented by the large number of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) deployed worldwide, the majority of which are trying out different jobs just to send money home for their families to live better lives at the expense of lost bonding time and homesickness.

Image Source: healthbuzz

This resilience, however, plays like a double-edged sword not only for OFWs who in some occasions,just accept the fate that being far away and losing their comfort zone are what it takes to give their families a better life, but also for young students subjected to external stress-inducing thoughts like the influence exerted by peers, the need to succeed in life, the aim to be independent, the urge to give back to parents.

Resilience entails self-control at its peak height with a running disadvantage of emotional wear and tear.

The young generation, tayo na maraming pangarap sa buhay, has felt the need to keep things to ourselves in one way and on the other, has resorted to social media posting rather than talking it out with the people close to us. Yup, marami sa atin ang nagpopost ng galit natin sa mundo via Facebook or Twitter. At some point, kahit na yung mga hinanakit natin tinatago na lang natin, pati mga failures at disappointments natin sa sarili natin pati na din sa iba, has taken a toll on us.

Image Courtesy: Adrian Hillman (Getty Images)

Because the notion of resilience is embedded in our society, na "sila nga nakaya, ikaw pa kaya," or na "wag ka ngang ganyan, hindi ka dapat malungkot kasi may iba pa diyan na mas naghihirap sa atin", it is harder to detect the real number of people who have depression. Minsan, kailangan natin sabihin sa ibang tao mga hinanaing at problema natin. Kailangan talaga natin ng mga makikinig sa atin, kasi masarap sa pakiramdam na may (mga) taong nandyan para satin kahit lang sa minutong nakikinig sila satin.

Opening up is key to getting the help that we need in order for us to feel better. But the question is, ano nga ba ang depression? Paano malalaman if depressed ako?

If you feel sad or miserable most of the time, posibleng may depression ka. To know if you need to go see a psychiatrist, you may be feeling at least five (5) of the following sa loob ng hindi bababa sa two (2) weeks.

 Una, nakakaramdam ka ba ng alin man sa dalawa?
  • depressed mood (hindi mapawing kalungkutan)
  • lack of pleasure or interest (yung mga gusto mong gawin dati, hindi mo na magawa o wala ka nang interes na gawin
Kung oo, napansin mo bang nagkaroon/nakaranas ka ng mga ito (at least 4) sa mga nakaraang linggo?
  • weight gain/loss (pagdagdag o pagbawas ng timbang nang hindi sinasadya e.g. hindi dahil nag-diet, o dahil masiba lang talagang kumain simula't sapul pa)
  • insomnia/hypersomnia (natatagalang makatulog o hindi makatalog sa mga oras na dapat ikaw ay tulog na, o di kaya'y sumosobra ka sa tulog na napapansin na ito ng mga kasama mo sa bahay)
  • slowness/agitation (aligaga o hindi mapakali, o pwede ding sobrang bagal kumilos, to a point na wala ka nang natatapos na gawain)
  • fatigue/loss  of energy (matamlay, walang enerhiya para gawin ang mga bagay-bagay na araw-araw mong ginagawa, o di kaya'y mas gusto mo na lang na nakahiga ka buong araw at ayaw mo nang bumangon)
  • feelings of worthlessness or guilt (para sa iyo'y wala kang kwenta o di kaya'y sinisi mo sarili mo lagi kung kaya't ganoon na ang kinalagyan mo sa buhay)
  • reduced ability to concentrate/focus or indecisiveness (hindi makapagdesisyon nang maayos, atras-abante sa pagdedesisyon, o di kaya'y hindi na makaaral, kaya bumabagsak na hanggang sa puntong ayaw nang pumasok sa school)
  • recurrent thoughts of suicide/death (bigla na lang sumasagi sa isip mo na tapusin na o kitilin na ang buhay mo)
Image Source: Pinterest
If you feel at least five (5) of the ones mentioned above for at least two (2) weeks, please seek help. Consult a psychiatrist. It will also help if you share it with your family or close friends. 

Remember that you matter. 

Your existence matters. You were born for a purpose in this world. You may not seem to understand what your purpose is right at this moment, but trust me, your life is worth celebrating. You are needed by people. 

You just somehow fail to realize it 'cause in the body-talk sense of it, hindi balanse ang mga kemikal sa utak mo and the doctor can help make you feel better and give you more clarity as to why you're here on Earth. 

Make the move. Seek help. :)

P.S. If you feel you're not yet ready, you may want to try talking to some stranger online via 7cups. It helped me go past the darkness I was stuck in, several months ago. 

Sunday, April 2, 2017

JOB | Table of Withholding Tax and Income Tax Rates in the Philippines

This March and April come what most Filipinos parents have been longing for -- graduation day. Alongside this is the anxiety attached with having to leave the premises of the school or university and having to look for work. Congratulations, fresh graduates!

Image Source: Zeenews India

A lot of you will have to wait for at least two (2) months to get the job you'd want. Some will stick with a job that is not what they imagined to be, but is so-so na for an entry work. A few will have to count several weeks more before they meet the occupation they want to take. One or two will pursue higher education, while the remainder will stay jobless for 6 months.

Regardless of what type of industry you land in, which kind of boss you encounter, or how much you'll begin earning, you must bear in mind that you gotta know how much tax to pay to the Philippine government which your employer will deduct from your salary as part of your income tax, now that you've become a part of the productive workforce of the country.

Here is the table withholding tax and exemptions as per Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) policy.

Table of Withholding Tax (Philippines) from Leigh Michiyato

Check out the Bureau of Internal Revenue's (BIR) website for more information on income tax or view the Powerpoint presentation on income tax rates for individuals and corporations in the Philippines.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

HEALTH | On Schizophrenia and Psychosis

Have you ever met someone who sort of hears voices which other people do not hear? Or someone who sees things that we don't usually see? These are called hallucinations and may point to a mental disorder. Essentially, a lot of them fail to understand what is real and display social behaviors that sometimes other people don't understand.

Sila yung mga nakakarinig o nakakita ng mga bagay na hindi nakikita ng iba. Sila din yung minsan ay may mga paniniwala na mahirap maiwasto gaya ng paniniwala na may laging nakaabang sa kanila o di kaya'y sila ang pinakamakapangyarihang tao sa mundo.

Image Courtesy: DailyStar.co.uk

A while back, our lecturer taught us about schizophrenia being one of the psychotic disorders that some Filipinos have to deal with on a day-to-day basis. One regional survey even found a prevalence of at least 4% in that area; that's relatively high versus the 1% prevalence worldwide. If we come to think of it though, 1% of the Philippine population translates to around 1 million battling schizophrenia. 

And that's just not it; others suffer from other mental disorders too including anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder and substance-related disorders.

So, ano nga ba ang psychosis which we see in schizophrenics?

Psychosis is the impairment of specific domains including emotion, perception, and motor function. That's why a lot of psychotic patients tend to be less emotionally stable, perceive things we don't see or hear, and sometimes turn violent and exhibit disorganized behavior.

Note, however, that they did not want this. We need to help them. Kailangan nila suporta natin. Hence, early diagnosis while still young is a must para hindi pa lumala ang kondisyon.

Usually, a parent may seek a psychiatrist's help for his/her child if:
  • for young school boys - tend to be lonely, anxious or have discipline problems (palaaway, may imaginary friend, etc)
  • for young school girls - tend to be withdrawn socially and isolated

The first psychotic episode is the most critical, since aggressive treatment needs to be done to prevent further decline in the individual's capacity for functioning (or productivity) in society. It's also important that families of those with schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders always ensure their adherence to medications because almost all patients relapse if their medications are discontinued during treatment period. 

We also do not want relapses to happen because the more relapses they get, the lower their level of functioning they'd end up with. As much as possible, gusto natin na magawa pa nila mga bagay na nagagawa ng madaming tao tulad ng pagliligo, pag-aalaga sa sarili, pagtratrabaho at kung anu-ano pa.

The Department of Health (DOH) has included mental health issues under the spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases. However, I think that it needs to be given more emphasis and placed in a separate category. This group of disorders needs to be allocated more budget since individuals who face these types of disorders tend to end up having difficulties living their life.

Always remember that everyone needs love and care. Hindi lang yung mga mayayaman. Hindi lang yung mga matatalino. Hindi lang yung mga may kakayahang makaintindi at makaalam kung alin ang totoo sa hindi.

So, let's stop the stigma and guide them (and their families) so that they'd be able to fit in this world too without having to worry about being judged or discriminated.

Friday, February 3, 2017

LIST | Five summer destinations to visit near Metro Manila

Having headache thinking where to spend your summer vacation this year? Also, you’re probably worried about your budget, right? Well, Relax. Stop worrying!  

Have you forgotten? Philippines boasts some of the most exciting prospects for summer; from its gorgeous beaches and luscious dishes to those sets of friendly people anyone would wish they'd meet. Well, if you are planning to spend near Metro Manila, there are summer destinations nearby that can offer you a well deserved vacation. This might be a shock for you, but you can still have fun under the sun without overspending. 

Here are five summer destinations near Metro Manila that you can consider visiting for your much awaited summer holidays?

1. Tagaytay

Image Source: PanoramicTrip

Summer in the Philippines can be excruciatingly hot. Because of the summer heat, people choose to visit Tagaytay. If you just want to unwind and chill, consider visiting Tagaytay. The place offers the finest views, with cool atmosphere. Don’t miss the chance to visit Sky Ranch or simply roam every morning in one of the city’s parks and gardens. You’ll surely love the vibe the place radiates. 

How to get there? From Manila, take a bus bound for Tagaytay or Nasugbu or you can also take a shuttle/van to Lemery at Starmall Alabang or Shaw. 

Daily suggested budget? 850Php-1500Php.

2. Puerto Galera

Image Source: The Philippines

It is an undeniable fact that summer is the best time to hit the beach, right? From Metro Manila, approximately four hours traveling will get you to a place so serene and alluring, Puerto Galera, where city-dwellers visit for beach activities such as swimming and beach bumming

Declared a Man and Biosphere Reserve of UNESCO in 1973, it is one of the destinations with the richest marine biodiversity in the world. Visitors can experience their dream of enjoying life in white sand beach there without spending too much unlike when you go to Boracay where most partygoers and socializers set off during summer holidays. 

Monday, January 9, 2017

LOOK | Wanna Date Your Crush? Here's What You Should Do.

I, sort of, happened to have come across this Facebook post by a certain UST student named RJ Carbonell. And what he gave away through this hilarious post is one special technique every guy or girl should apply in order for him/her to win a date from his/her crush.

Image Source: Guernsey Salsa

Alas, this blog has found something much more relevant in the space of dating and relationships! Haha! Let's not lengthen this post further. Here is Mr. Carbonell's secret or ultra useful tip in inviting someone to a date with subtlety. :))

Screenshot: Facebook user RJ Carbonell

TIPS | 10 Things to Look for Before Dating a Guy

This article is somewhat several points off my list of interests, because mehhh, dating is not for me haha. But then again, I think it's a matter of time to ask someone (if not ask out, just ask haha) what a girl or, as others may say, an independent woman should look for in a potential date.

What do girls seek before saying yes to someone to go out on a date? What is it that we, men, should somehow take in as pointers when attempting to woo someone or invite for dinner? This list gives you 10 of the things to look for before dating a guy! Enjoy!


Every girl is unique. This applies to every other thing we girls tend to delve into: from designing to fashion styles, from cooking recipes to social circles and parties, and of course, it’s hard not to feel those little butterflies in your stomach. Every other daughter of Eve is unique when it comes to who to date, and eventually love.

Which is why what you expect from a man and from a happy relationship is way different than what your friends and family members expect.

Image Source: The Art of Charm

Deep-set eyes? Nice smile? Odd sense of humor? There are quite a lot of things that make you feel drawn to the opposite sex, and can be your basis for eventually saying “Yes!” to a first date. But I have always believed that choosing who to date is about more than attraction. And it always helps to date somebody you’re already friends with, or acquaintances, for that matter. Besides, you don’t date someone just for the fun of it, expecting it to be short-term, right?

So, here’s a list of qualities I always have to tick off when checking if a guy is worth dating. 

1. He has faith and value system. Coming from a devoted and religious family, dating a guy who is faithful to his God and has values is always on top of my list. Values also play a vital role in my dating potential selection: how he treats me and other people around, and how he deals with problems in life. This may be hard to look for before dating. You just have to trust your instincts with this and your appeal to allow him to share thoughts with you.

2. He loves his family. For me, this is one of the very important things to look for. Of course, you don’t see it right away when you’re still not dating, but you can easily notice hints, especially if you’re friends with the guy. Him calling his mom if she got home safe or even him chatting about his funny little sister are ominous clues!