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Non-Financial Things I Learned while Investing on the Stock Market

When I came up with this topic, I thought this will just be one article. But as I write it, it turns out there are horde of things to discuss. I know that reading about the stock market is not the most interesting thing in the world, so I decided to turn this into a series. Just a disclaimer, I am not an expert and I am not giving any advice or tips. I’m just sharing my thoughts and maybe someone will take something from it.

Me and the stock market may seem like an odd couple. But for almost three years, I am enjoying this world of numbers and other terminologies I forget the minute I log off my online broker account. Understanding how the market works and doing well at it isn’t easy, but it is definitely not as hard or alien as I thought it will be. The concept is not impossible to grasp. Buy low, sell high. Simple enough right? Well, no. It requires a lot of learning. From investing tips, market forecast, to researching on the performance of your chosen stocks – there is a lot of knowledge to consume before you can confidently say that you know what you are doing. But, how to grow my investment is not the only things I learned in the stock market. I’ve also picked up a few helpful things that I can also apply outside the world of bears and bulls:

Stock market

Set aside emotions when making decisions

Upon the advice of my brother, I bought a mining stock. After years of being stagnant, some legalities made this stock go up again and future seems really bright. But right after buying it, the price went down, in order to manage the loss, I bought some more, then it went down again, so I bought some more. Then, it went down again. It would have been a sane decision if not for the fact that all of that happened in just weeks.

I thought I was managing my losses by in reality, fear took control. If only I kept calm and waited for more development, I could have bought the stock at a lower price and be more effective in cost-averaging.

A year after that, I can now handle my emotions better. I just sold the first ever stock I bought. It reached its target price and I already have 20% profit (IKR!!!) on it. It was time to sell and even if I was feeling melancholy, I just have to brush it off. The thing is, it had also reached the target price a year before, but I didn’t sell because I love the idea of owning such stocks. And, it is my first ever stocks. But I have to snap out of it. 20% profit can be considered a unicorn.

From http://www.unconventional-investing.com/

In the stock market, no one can afford to be controlled by their emotions. And, there is no reason to let emotions take over – investment guides and technical analysis are easily available. Allowing your feelings get the best of you literally has a cost. So either you get it together or just say bye-bye to your money.

In the real world, the consequences of your emotionally fueled decisions won’t be showed in neatly presented tables. But you’ll see them as bothersome what-ifs, hear them in heavily breathed sigh.

Emotions are powerful, but they can really mess up the way we think. Some decisions need to be objective and you just have to take control over what you are feeling. Whether it is about buying that pair of heels or deciding to take on a career change, minimizing the influence of emotions can lead you to a much sounder choice. One that you wouldn’t regret once feelings fade.

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So My Forehead Decided to Act Ten Years Younger (Not in a Good Way)

Zits. Across my forehead. This is bad bad baaad. It’s like sophomore year in high school all over again.

After finally having a decent skin care regimen to stick to, I succeeded on clearing up my skin of major blemishes and make my complexion glow like a cherub’s for the past few months. That is, until my forehead decided to do a turnabout.

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Last selfie I took more than a month ago before my pores revolted against me. See? I was so glow-y! And with no makeup! =_=

I think it started with the flesh-colored mini bumps I got after trying out the Caviar Peptide Mask from Watson’s. They weren’t pimples, so I was like, “Meh, my exfoliant will take care of that.” But it still persisted. So I tried tea tree oil since it works on small pimples I get every now and then and some of the bumps did disappeared .

But things got REALLY worse after I tried Etude House’s Precious Mineral BB Cream. Since my summer tan already faded and my Maybelline foundation is now a shade darker so it doesn’t match my current skin tone, I was in the look out for a new tinted moisturizer. I was eyeing NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer even though it’s a bit expensive since I think if you’re going to spend a lot of money on makeup, it should be on foundation/tinted moisturizer and mascara. But mom got the BB Cream from her boss for free so I tried it instead.

preciousmineralbbcreambrightfit14000I actually liked the BB Cream. It’s light weight, I liked the pearly finish, and its SPF is as high as NARS’. The only down side I initially noticed was I got more oily than normal, needing two sheets of oil blotters by noon instead of only one. The zits started to appear a week after, one on the cheek, a small one on the jaw line, and another on the forehead. I was pretty sure that it’s the BB cream that’s causing me to break out since it’s the only new product I’ve been using. After two weeks of use, I decided to give the BB Cream back to my mom. I thought giving my skin a rest from makeup would be sufficient to make my zits would go away but nope, still have ’em.

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My forehead as of December 5, looks less awful due to lighting.

Aside from the BB Cream, I guess work-related stress (three weeks of heavy work load WITHOUT SUNDAY REST DAY) and PMS also made it worse. Even my boyfriend and co-workers noticed my zits now. Queen Helene Mint Julep Mask helps in calming the redness but only for a day and my tea tree oil does nothing to heal it now that it’s pretty bad. I’ll try Mario Badescu’s Drying Cream since I’ve read a lot of good reviews from it online, some even said it only takes 2-3 days for the pimples to completely heal. For a long term fix, I’ll be looking for skin care with BHA or retinol in the ingredient list. I’ll just post an update next week if my forehead will get better. I just wish it won’t get any worse.

rozza authorbox wideUPDATE Feb 2014: Okay after more than 2 months since this post, I’m still breaking out. Now it’s mostly along my jawline and chin so there’s a big probability that this is not caused by one product and I’m suffering from hormonal acne. So I guess Etude House’s BB Cream is off the hook(but still too oily for me). I’m currently using their AC Clinic Daily Toner and Moisturizer and Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleanser and Drying Lotion(as a weekly spot treatment, too harsh for daily use). I have fewer breakouts now, but my face is still left with dark spots from old acne. Will post updates in the future if my new regimen will clear my face up totally. Wish me luck!

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Pasalubong Shopping with Nanay plus Additional Watsons Haul

I love work-free holidays, they keep me sane from my usual work-slave schedule. You know what I love more than work-free holidays? Retail therapy. Mommy Nanay(our maternal grandma) will be going home to Las Vegas tomorrow so we went shopping two Tuesdays ago(yes, this post is THAT OVERDUE) and bought pasalubongs for our nieces and nephews(cousins’ kiddos). Yna and I love giving books as gifts since we love reading, so off to National Bookstore we went, with Nanay tagging along.

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We chose Filipino published children’s books to teach our pamangkins Filipino values and culture. Most of the books we bought were from Adarna House and Tahanan Books(my favorite client at work hehe).

After our book shopping, we headed for SM Makati for Ate Yna’s lens solution and a new eyeliner for me. I was eyeing the Super Skinny Eye Marker from NYX since it has a lot of good reviews online and I was pretty excited seeing NYX finally on department stores in Manila.  For those who aren’t familiar with the brand, NYX is very popular with dupe hunters and those who love budget makeups from other drugstore brands like Revlon, Maybelline, Wet ‘n Wild, etc. I drew swatches of eyeliners at the back of my hand(since whoever’s crazy enough to use a sample on their actual eyes are risking their peepers with infection, not a pretty picture).

Eyeliner swatches

Tried smudging the eyeliners at home, only Maybelline’s Hypersharp Liner and NYX Kohl Pencil survived.

The marker was more of a MEH than a WOW and more pricey than my old eyeliner from Maybelline, so I tried the other eyeliners on the booth, even the Kohl one which I liked but was not what I was looking for. I need a liquid eyeliner pen for my staple cat-eye and no one can rival Maybelline’s Hypersharp Liner‘s 0.5mm brush tip. So  I marched off to Maybelline’s booth and got a fresh new pen to replace my dried out one which lasted for more than a year.

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Sorry NYX, maybe I’ll have more luck on your Soft Matte Lip Cream.

Aside from my liquid eyeliner, Yna and I also bought a ginormous bottle of vanilla lotion and two face masks.

Camera 360We are crazy for anything vanilla-scented and Watsons Warm Vanilla Sugar Body Lotion did not disappoint. It has a very rich but non sticky consistency and you’ll end up smelling so yummy like a butterscotch bar. We also tried Beauty Buffet’s face masks since it’s so cheap at 2 masks for Php58.00(Php44 when sold individually). I got caviar and biopeptide while Ate Yna sampled the green tea and grape seed one. Their masks are packed with so much essence, after using it for 20 minutes I also wiped it on my underarms, elbows and knees.

Tomorrow would be a holiday again and a long weekend. Hopefully there won’t be any emergency rush jobs that would force me and my co-department mates to go on overtime. I’m really looking forward to long hours of sleep on our magical bed at home in Laguna.

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Christmas Shopping Survival Guide

Well look at that, September just went by with a swoosh. We have entered the last quarter of the year and if you haven’t started your Christmas shopping yet, then I’m worried for you honey. Great shopping expedition such as the one we usually do every holidays requires intense planning and a big allowance of time. If Santa Claus needs the whole year, an army of elves, and a big dose of magic in order to give presents to every goody two-shoes in world, what makes you think you can do your Christmas shopping with a solitary trip to the mall? But all is not lost, I’m here to give you tips and pointers on how to make your holiday gift shopping as stress-free as possible.

Start early – As with most things, starting your shopping early will definitely make the task easier. Define early? How about right now? Yes, right now, when most of the masses are complaining about hearing Christmas jingles on the radio. Right now, when most Christmas TV ads are still in post-production. Right now, when no one still dare hang-up a single Christmas ornament. When you start shopping right now, you do not have to contend with manic crowds and you can choose items at your leisure allowing you to make sound judgement whether to get or not. Shopping early don’t just mean less crowds, it also  means you can get the items before prices jack up due to demand. Plus, you are not on panic mode so you can enjoy your shopping trip as you should.

Do #1 and 2 on this list –  Santa has one and it helps him a great deal. List every person that you want to smile this Christmas as well as the gift ideas you have for them. It helps to have multiple ideas per person so you won’t get stuck in case you cannot find the item you want or the item you want is out of your price range. If you have a horde of godchildren like me, grouping them according to age will help. Make your list as detailed as possible, you can also jot down the stores you may want to visit and the range of prices for the items. This last idea helps you make a realistic budget. What do you call a shopping strategy without a budget? A disaster. Yes, its Christmas and you are in a generous and loving mood, but keep in mind that it is bad luck to be broke on a new year, so you also have to keep your bank account happy by making sure that it still have a healthy balance when you are done shopping.

Widen your shopping network – Don’t just depend on your favorite mall. Christmas shopping bazaars are sprouting all over metro and of course, there is the ever-reliable Divisoria. When shopping at Divisoria, time is of the essence, so do it now. Plus, things are cheaper now than it will be on November. I got three pieces of toddler’s dress all for 75Php and two pairs of boy’s shirt and shorts for 75Php as well. Choices are not lacking in this shopping haven and if you do your thing right, you can fulfill everything on your list with just one shopping trip and with money to spare. Market! Market! at BGC is also a good place for Christmas shopping; it offers variety at slightly lower prices than department stores.

Have a shopping buddy – What is a great adventure if you do not have someone to share it with? Plus, a shopping buddy can keep you in check and help you make decisions when you are in a bind. A shopping buddy is also an extra pair of eyes and hands that can be immensely helpful. You can split the list with your shopping buddy so you can cover more area at a quicker pace. And when you are done shopping, enjoying a well-deserved snack is more enjoyable with a friend.

Go online – Shopping online has a lot of perks. No traffic, no crowds, no mall hours, and the items is delivered right at your doorstep. Sometimes, the prices are even lower. From online shopping websites to Instagram sellers, the world wide web offers shopping staples to ultra unique knick knacks. Online shopping is even more advantages if you are looking for something that are not easily available at the mall. But, it also comes with downside, you can’t inspect the item before your purchase – so its best to be really careful before you click that checkout button.

Christmas is a time of cheer and the stress of buying gifts should not get in the way of your celebration. Shopping should be fun and Christmas shopping is even more so because you are buying for the people you love. It should not be a total warfare that some people make out to be.

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Daddy’s Omakase Birthday Lunch

Two weekends ago, Yna and I went home to Laguna to celebrate Dad’s 55th birthday. Our budget was Php1,000/pax since our original plan was to have lunch at Gourmet Farm in Silang, Cavite but the weather was acting like a total B so Dad decided to go for  Omakase instead. It is a Japanese restaurant in the new Molito Mall in Alabang.

Happy Birthday Dad 1

(L-R)Our paternal grandma Mommy Lily, me, our Mommy Meng, Ate Yna, and Daddy Edwin. Only half smiles for now since we’re still hungry, we’re more photogenic most of the time, I swear.

We ordered Shoyu Ramen since all birthday celebrations in our family requires noodles for long life. Plus, we totally needed the soup to warm us up since it was raining heavily when we arrived.

Camera 360We ordered a Mt. Fuji Roll, a rice roll with tuna in the middle and unagi and cream cheese(yay no mayo!) on top. It’s the first time I tried eating a maki(is this a maki?) since most maki I encounter has some sort of mayo on it or with it(we could just say that me hating mayo is an understatement.)

Mt Fuji Roll OmakaseWe also tried Nana’s Wings(some sort of chili wings), a serving of Omakase(beef tenderloin) steak, and 8 pieces of Ebi Tempura. Ate Yna liked Nana’s Wings’ level of spiciness which is deliciously hot but tolerable.

Nanas Wings OmakaseThe Ebi Tempura was Mommy Lily’s order(I still ate two even though I’m allergic to shrimps, hoho thank you antihistamines!) The breading was light and crispy, while the shrimps inside are juicy and fulfilling(unlike SOME Jap restos who cheat their customers by slicing the shrimps IN HALF).

Ebi Tempura Omakase

But the star for me is the Omakase steak. The meat was tender while the sauce was savory sweet. If ever I’ll come back to Omakase, I’ll order a serving of this steak for me alone. It’s the best tenderloin steak I’ve had recently.

Omakase SteakDad opted for a separate Beef Bento which is a meal complete with Miso soup, sushi, Beef Teppan, potato salad, and rice. Beef Bento OmakaseFor our desserts, Dad’s bento meal has a complementary vanilla ice scream while the rest of us ordered a tempura ice cream and a green tea ice cream. I’m a matcha milk/ice cream junkie, and Omakase’s green tea ice cream is way better than Fruits In Ice Cream’s. It reminded me of matcha flavored milk that I used to buy when I visited my brother in Taipei. The tempura ice cream was disappointing since most of the ice cream inside the tempura breading already melted.

Omakase Desserts

Here is the price breakdown of our meal:

Shoyu Ramen             190.00

Mt. Fuji Roll                295.00

Nana’s Wings              150.00

Omakase Steak          360.00

Ebi Tempura              425.00

Beef Bento                   375.00

Tempura Ice Cream   95.00

Green Tea Ice Cream 80.00

The food, plus two cups of extra rice, Yna’s iced tea, service charge, and then deduct Mommy Lily’s senior citizen discount – our bill was around Php2,200: waaaay below our allotted budget and more importantly, the food was awesome. You can find Omakase in Molito Mall, Alabang. They also have branches in Ayala Triangle Gardens, Intrepid Plaza Bldg, Libis, and in Il Terrazzo Mall, in Quezon City.

It was a great break after days of heavy workload in the office, and no bed relaxes me more than our childhood bed in Laguna. And as dessert for this post, here’s me and Yna making faces while on our way to Omakase.

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Yes our sweet smiles could give you diabetese. Lol JK.

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Let’s Do an Updo Westeros Style

Khaleesi Updo

“Sinong may free time sa trabaho? Si Rozza!:D”

I posted this quick back-selfie on Facebook and WeChat last July. I was bored at work since my workload that day was relatively light(unlike now, I have 6AM-6PM shifts PLUS additional overtime and this will be my schedule FOR THE WHOLE MONTH. Ugh.) My sister said it looked like an updo from Game of Thrones, while a friend asked how it was done. It looks complicated, but it’s pretty easy to do. I did it to myself with no mirror within 15 minutes. So I made a tutorial with my sister, Yna, as my model. I made the braids in this tutorial tighter so it’s easier to see the steps.

Khaleesi Updo step 1STEP 1:  Divide your hair into three french braids, with the middle one narrowing as you get nearer to the nape. Secure the ends of your braids with large bobby pins which we’ll use later to secure the bun.

Khaleesi Updo step 2STEP 2: Tie the two side braids together.

Khaleesi Updo step 3STEP 3: Loop the center braid over side braids’ knot, and slip it in the gap between the left braid and the center braid.

Khaleesi Updo step 4STEP 4: Now loop the center braid over side braids’ knot, and slip it in the gap between the right and center braid. Hide the end of your center braid by tucking it in between the left and center braid UNDER the side braids’ knot. If your hair is longer, just repeat steps 3 and 4 then tuck the end of your braid under the side braids’ knot. Use the big bobby pin to lock your center braid into the bun.

Khaleesi Updo step 5STEP 5: Now we have something that looks like a braid hybrid of a chignon, but we’re not yet done. Tuck your left braid in the gap between your right and center braid and secure with the bobby pin. Then tuck your right braid to the other gap and lock it too with a bobby pin.

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How To Fall In Love With Someone Who’s Been In Love Before

Thought Catalog

You have your first relationship, and then you have your first relationship. The one where you finally figure out, beyond all reasonable doubt or concern, what it’s like to be in love. The one where the word “forever”—however impractical it may be—doesn’t seem so far-fetched anymore; the one where the phrase “I love you” finally sounds right rolling off your tongue; the one that sad Lana Del Rey songs will always be able to describe exactly. It could have happened in high school or college or even after, but it’s a time of innocence and beauty and discovery that can never be captured again. It’s like a dream, but like all dreams, you eventually wake up.

You go to different colleges, your paths go different ways, one of you has to break it off. But how can things ever be the same again? How can you ever not feel attracted…

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