Manhood, Leadership, and Discipleship

We are starting another chapter of our lives.  As the new year begins, let us continue to find our passion and do the things that we love. Let us be inspired and be an inspiration to others as well. We try to focus more on the good things in life!

The next person I am featuring here is an inspiration to others. He is a minister. He leads people and prays for them.  I do not share the same religion with him but, we are both Christians.  I was raised Catholic and I am still a devotee. Religion for me is a path. We all have different paths to one destination. So personally,  I always believe in respecting people’s differences.

Anyway, I would just like to share why I am featuring this Pastor. He was an acquaintance in College more than twenty years ago. I believe we went to one class together in De La Salle University Manila. Just a few months back, my friend sent us a message. She  was telling us about the conference that she attended, and she wanted to confirm if the speaker was the person we knew.  With technology on hand (which makes research easier), I checked his Instagram account and sent him a message. He recognized me and my friends.

I can still remember in  College, we were all trying to survive school and meet its demands. We wanted to follow our dreams and fulfill our destiny. Sometimes you will never really know what life has to offer.  I just feel very happy seeing people become successful in their chosen paths. For this particular instance, Pastor Dennis is living  a meaningful life and that is being of service to others.

Dennis Sia Sy was born in Tondo Manila on October 7, 1979. He is a Pastor, a blogger, and an author of four books: (1)  SYNC: How to Know God’s Will for your Life , (2) Rich for Life: Secrets of Those Who Stayed Rich for Life and How You Can be One, (3) Act Like a Man: Taking Manhood Back and (4) Why Settle for Good Sex when you can have Great Sex?

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What did you study in College? What did you do after graduating?

“I had a Major in Social Planning and Development. During delay days, I worked part-time in our family business as the marketing and sales head. I was also a bodegero. Our family is in the textile industry sa Divisoria.”

When did you FIRST hear the calling to be a pastor?

“First felt called when I was 12 when a youth pastor preached and told him I want to be like him going to different schools raising next generation leaders who will change the world.”

How did you become a Pastor (training/schooling?)

“After working for the family business for 2.5 years I decided to pursue my study as a Pastor at the same time working at night hosting events and doing stand up comedy to provide for my needs.”

Where do you preach?

“I pastor at Victory Greenhills (Shopping capital of the Philippines).”

The most difficult challenge you’ve experienced as a Preacher?

“It’s difficult challenge is leadership is ME. The major hindrance to living Gods purpose in my life is me.

I needed to be transformed by His word. Romans 12:1-2

The fear and insecurity of a young pastor leading was evident in my first few years in ministry trying to prove something when there was really nothing to prove because Christ already paid the price by dying on the cross for my sin.

The tyranny of doing more for God and trying harder to be good to earn Gods blessing till you read the Scripture and realize that you are already blessed and favored by God.”

Your prayer for the Philippines

“Prayer for the nation is that we would see a resurgence of people’s hunger towards the things of God – that we might see that real change comes from us going back to Jesus who is the ultimate hero of history.”

For more information about Pastor Dennis, you can visit his website: http://dennissy.com/

 

 

 

 

 

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Khristine Meets Christine!

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Our family was in church hearing an ordinary Sunday mass. We were sitting in the cry room since we have two young kids. The mass was about to begin, when suddenly I noticed  a familiar face walked in. I believe she was with teenage daughter/s.  I could not remember where I met her.
The mass went on and during the Holy Communion, she passed us by . She even looked my way for a while.  Then  I realized that she looked like the TV personality back home in Manila but I was not so sure though.
After a few months, I was browsing people in Instagram. From one person, it led me to the photo of that familiar face. I figured it was Christine Jacob!  I sent her a message asking if she happened to be in our parish church, and she confirmed it! So I thought I’d ask her if I can feature her in my little blog site. She was very nice to say “Sure, anytime!”
Christine Sotto Jacob-Sandejas, also known as Christine Jacob, is a Filipina Olympian swimmer, actress, T.V. host, and newscaster. She was born in Guam and her family moved back to Manila. She joined the Southeast Asian Games in Singapore in 1983 when she was 16. The following year, she competed in the swimming competition in the Summer Olympics 1984.
When she was 23 years old she got offered a co-hosting job in a show called “Eat Bulaga.” More projects followed.  She stopped hosting in showbiz when she got pregnant with her first child. Now she has five children with her loving husband, Paco Sandejas. She has been a TV personality for around 26 years now.
I reviewed some stories about her and found a recent one posted by the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (http://www.cbcpnews.com/cbcpnews/?p=76086) last April 20, 2016.  The article talks about how Catholic faith is very important to Christine and her family  (an evident reason why I probably found her in church when she was visiting in LA).  In the article she mentioned the following was mentioned:
“Christine shared she and her husband go out of their way to instill in their children the fundamentals of the faith like teachings on the Mass, Confession, and the other Sacraments.”
“They also read them stories from the Bible to complement and reinforce what they learn at school.”
“They make sure the little Sandejases—all five of them—will grow up respectful, honest, and disciplined.”
“Values are very important for me,” exclaimed Christine.
I read another article written about her by her sister-in-law, Amanda Griffin. Christine shared here her typical day:
“I wake up at 6. Have my coffee, bring my 4 kids to school (Jaime 2 yrs old school just started in June) , Then ME time…I play tennis or yoga or run or workout…pick up the 4 yr old from school and have lunch with them. Then do errands (bank, grocery etc). Pick up the 3 older kids from school and bring them to various activities (ballet/ gymnastics/ soccer/ reading/ little gym/ cheer dancing/ violin guitar/ piano…etc (never ending activities..wait till summer ) Then come home and do homework, Dinner then Sleep by 8:30. And the cycle starts again……” (http://amandagriffinjacob.com/christine-jacob/August 1, 2011 Amanda Griffin – Jacob)
These are the reasons why I feature her in my blog. I truly admire her energy taking care of herself, her family, particularly being hands on with her five children. Based on my experience, I find it indeed challenging to  discipline children and mold them to be good people. So I am just truly glad that I got the chance to interview Christine and share some of her wisdom.
Let’s hear from Christine!
 
Where did you live in the US during your elementary years? How old were you when you came to live in Manila?
I grew up in Manila . I was born in Guam but after 6 months my family moved to Manila . I consider Manila as my home . I went to school at the Colegio San Agustin in Makati till high school .
 
You were an Olympian. When did you first learn how to swim?  Will you briefly describe your experience when you joined the Summer Olympics in 1984?
 Started competing (swimming ) at the age of 6. First international swim meet at 11 Junior Olympics held in Japan.  Then Southeast Asian age group , SEA GAmes , Asian Games , Olympics in 1984 in LA 😊  I truly pride myself in  being Philippine trained .
You have been a TV personality for around 26 years now.
I studied college in Ohio , Kenyon College . I continued to swim.
All 4 years . I graduated in 1989 BA in International Studies with China as my area of concentration. 
 After 1 year of working in Boston I decided to move back to Manila then doors started to open in the field of communication. I     started hosting Eat Bulaga in December 1990, then as a newscaster for PTV4 also the same year . 
    1990-1998 Co-hosted in Eat Bulaga 
    1998-2001 MTB (Magandang Tanghali Bayan ABS-CBN)
    Married in 1999.
    First child came in 2000
    5 kids 
    
I would host various shows while taking care of my family: Mobile Kusina, Here Comes the bride, Game Na, Full Time Mom
Currently I have a daily show on CNN Philippines called Real Talk .
How do you do it? How do you raise 5 kids? What is one important thing that every parent should remember? 
Values for children . Instilling values is getting to be more difficult with the access of social media , bring the whole world into your home . The kids are exposed to a different culture, the values have changed . That’s why the importance of family life. The importance of spending time with your kids , being there for them . Guiding them during the formation years.
I am aware about your typical day. I can relate to your activities.I can not imagine how you manage five children. I often complain and yet I only have two! I heard you do yoga, runs, swim? Balancing all these things alongside with work and family.
Where do you get the energy?! What is the secret? Do you have a regular regimen/work out? 
A few years ago I was much more active than I am now. Maybe age has caught up with me😱. I remember a time when I would run 10k before my 2 hour tennis practice etc.. I am a very competitive person and feel the need to train to get better. I am trying to ween myself from that and just take it easy and relax a bit more .
Now I am happy with a few hours a week of social tennis . Maybe go back to yoga. 
DIET is now my main concern. My metabolism has changed a lot so I needed to find the right combination of foods.
As I age I find I can’t do dairy / fried foods (my stomach gets upset)
So in the morning I juice/blend a lot of my greens. I try to consume healthy fats since I stay away from grains / bread. I use a lot of coconut Oil for my food / 
desserts and at times in my coffee. I love  coconut Keffir – probiotics.  Avocado / spinach / banana shake during my tennis games . 
I eat a lot of greens / chicken – fish – soups . Once I take out sugar and eat healthy I do find I am not sluggish and have lots of energy for my daily activities . 
But my weakness is chocolates 😱😱😱
What else do you want to accomplish? What is your one great dream?
I hope to do more shows on CNN Philippines.
I love nutrition / food / parenting .. 
I love Philippine made 😍😍😍 products / clothes/ jewelry
christinejacob

Words from Daphne Oseña-Paez

I feature my favorite people here in my blog site. They inspire me in so many different ways. The next person I will be presenting is someone I admire not just for her beauty and style, but also for her brain, talent, and confidence. Her works reflect my hobby and interests like blogging, travel, home, fashion jewelry, and inspiring stories about women and motherhood. I am very blessed that she responded to some of my questions. She even gave me some advice for my blog! I remember first seeing her from the show, “F” which she co-hosted with Angel Aquino and Cher Calvin! Meet the lovely and very smart, Daphne Oseña-Paez!

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“Daphne Oseña-Paez is a TV host, producer, and businesswoman from Manila.  She is known for her production and hosting of television programs  Urban Zone, Proudly Filipina, and F. She is the first Filipina ever appointed Special Advocate for Children by UNICEF Philippines.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daphne_Ose%C3%B1a-Paez)

“In May 2011 she founded Auction for Action: A UNICEF Fundraising Online Auction to benefit children’s programs in the Philippines and worldwide. It was the first online auction for UNICEF Philippines. It features work from noted local artists and designers in the hope of raising money that would benefit programs on maternal health and education in the Philippines’ poorer areas.”   She was also featured in Vogue in 2011 (http://www.vogue.it/en/people-are-talking-about/vogue-features/2011/12/daphne-osena-paez#ad-image145665)

Here are some answers straight from Daphne.

What were you doing before your TV appearances?

Urban planning

What course did you take in College and where? Did you really dream of hosting and being a public figure?

University of Toronto. Bachelor of Arts, specialist in Fine Art History, minor in Urban Studies. No dreams of TV work or public life. I was working as an urban planner, managing Canadian-funded programs in developing countries. Everything else was a happy accident.

With all the shows, TV hosting that you made what was your most favorite and why? Urban Zone – its my own show/creation. I didn’t just host it. I was producer, writer. It was a successful attempt at a late night lifestyle show. It was very influential.

What was the hardest challenge you have encounter? – life is full of challenges. In my darkest hour I turn to prayer. I’m never alone. I put full trust in the Lord. (As for sharing actual challenge, it’s too personal)

What is it you fear the most? – only God knows.

Do you consider yourself a hands on mom? How do you balance your career and family? — I don’t like the term “hands on mom” I don’t think it should exist. Because whether you are working or not, you are a mother just the same.

What is the most important thing you want your children to learn? What is it that you want to impart to them? – that they are loved by us no matter what. That they find joy in what it is they choose to do.

You are beauty and brains! In terms of beauty and appearance, are you high maintenance? How do you take care of your looks? What is beauty for you? Beauty tips you can share? – Be kind to your skin and body. Rest a lot. Don’t expose yourself to the sun too much. See a derma every month for cleaning. I go to Belo for facial and power peel every month.

What are your hobbies? – learning more dishes. I just learned how to cook. 

For more information and update of her works, you can visit her website  http://daphne.ph/.

It was really my pleasure to have an exchange of words with this super talented and very nice lady!

 

Catching Up With Cindy Kurleto

Thanks to writing. I started to see through things clearly. I am able to look deep inside and know myself a little bit more. I have become aware of my existence, of the life around me, of living, of being human, and even of my greatest fear, death.
One of the many things I have come to realize is that my life is too short to be mad, sad, or miserable. I have to overcome these emotions as they exist. I have to find out an outlet, my passion, and do things that make me happy. I have learned that playing the flute and blogging are one my favorite things at this stage of my life!
Moreover, I also realized that it is important to surround myself with people and things that will make me grow, that will inspire me, and make me happy. People and things that give out positive vibes and make us realize more the kindness and beauty of life. We can not always choose 100% of the time but we can still do something.
Even in my social media account (Instagram), I only choose to follow people who inspire me. There are indeed a lot of great people around the globe, and I wish I have all the time to write about them.  These inspirations crossing my path are part of my journey. Thus, I recognize and appreciate them through writing.
For instance, I wrote about the flutist who inspires me to do better, Bevani. Please read about her and check her Youtube Channel (Bevani Flute). Now, it is my pleasure to feature this wonderful lady. I never knew her personally but when I was younger I saw her from TV commercials in the Philippines.She was a VJ, model, actress. She has one of the most beautiful faces in Philippine Television. Meet Cynthia or better known as Cindy Kurleto! I do not remember how I found her in Instagram but when I saw her, I left a comment on her post about how glad I was to see her. She responded and she was very nice to everyone. We found out that we have the same birthdays too (and year)! What struck me was seeing how she has found love and happiness in her private life now. She has left the world of show business to fulfill her destiny to be where she is right now, a loving wife and mother. So let’s catch up with Cindy! 

Meet Bevani!

Most of us are fans of someone or something. We have our favorites!  Certain types of people and things appeal to us. As they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

And you are familiar with that fan mode feeling, right? The excitement, the joy, the inspiration they bring to us. It is sometimes overwhelming!

For those of you who have followed me, you know that I have started playing the flute again. Some twenty plus years ago, I had my summer lesson playing the flute. And after sometime, I just stopped. Now I am wondering  I could have been a very good musician now if I kept playing. But it’s okay. We all know that we can not go back to the past. All I have is NOW. I am just glad that I got back to playing 3 months ago. I just do self-study.  So far, I am enjoying it. I even put up a Youtube Channel (thehomemaker’smusic) just to compile my videos and to watch for improvements. My goal is to get better, enjoy the music and bring smiles to  my friends and family. And hopefully to other people too.

Going back to my previous thoughts, what would you feel if your “idol”, the person you’re considering as your role model/good example followed you back on Instagram? It was so funny when one night, I suddenly leaped and screamed for joy.  My favorite flutist just followed me back on Instagram (khris_79))!!! My husband and son were smiling and were very happy for me.  “Bevani followed me and she liked my video!”

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There are so many great flutists around the globe. Amazing players I look up to. But something in Bevani I really liked. When I see her, I think of these words: Talented, Relevant, Vibrant, Confident, Expression, Emotions.

I am so proud and happy that I was able to get in touch with her and ask her questions. She was very gracious to respond. Below were the questions I asked and her responses (verbatim).

1. When did you first hold a flute? How old were you?

I was 7 years old.

2. Why flute?

My mom loved the sound of flute and thought it would be a good fit for me – she was right. I had a very good tone right from the start.

3. What or who influenced you to play the flute?

Like I said, my mom started me on the flute but my flute teacher kept me going. She was creative and patient and really encouraged me to continue to practice. I’ll admit there were lots of times I wanted to quit but she kept me on track in a kind way.

4.  Can you please briefly share your music education background?

I studied with Heidi Ehle fro 7-18 years old. During this time I participated in the local competitions. I began teaching flute lessons at 16 years old, which helped me walk my talk. I encouraged all my students to practice more which in turn helped me practice more. I joined the Seattle Youth Orchestra when I was a Sr. in High School and won the concerto competition within the orchestra. I performed this solo in Benaroya hall which had a big impact on me and gave me confidence to continue flute in college. I studied flute at University of Puget Sound with Karla Flygare 2004-2008. Then went to University of Santa Barbara California from 2008-2010. During these years of college study I participated in lots of master classes studying with famous flutist from around the world and competed in local competitions. I won the concerto competition at UPS and UCSB.

4. How many hours a day do you practice?

This has changed over the years – in college 2-3 almost every day. Now 1-2 almost every day but sometimes I take a week off.

5. Favorite piece/song you play 

Too many and I think it changes all the time. Sometime a good pop song is so enjoyable and sometime I need some French flute music or classical songs to keep my fingers and chops really engaged.

6. How do you see yourself in 5 years in terms of music?

A few more albums – hopefully another electronic original. I’ve always wanted to put Mozart with electronic beats, lots more music videos, teaching online lessons, performing at schools and inspiring kids. A tour in the U.S and Europe!

7. Advice on people like me who are aspiring to be good musicians.

Keep practicing – it takes time. Make clear goals. Track your improvement by recording yourself and practicing with a metronome. Find musicians that inspire you. Find a teacher you like. Play with other musicians. Learn from the numerous resources online and remember there are lots of way to be a musician. There is not one route so see if you can kind find ways to play music that inspires you.

You can visit her sites:

http://www.bevani.com/

Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/bevaniflute.

Facebook and Instagram: bevaniflute

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Sharing with you my favorite video: