TGIF #29: Something Pink

Tomorrow will be October and it’s breast cancer awareness month. This is one of the dreadful killers (most frequently on women). So, i guess we need to be informed or at least know something about this. I personally knew women who died of this cancer: my friend (who used to be my son’s babysitter, my husband’s cousin, and 2 of his aunts, and many more of our friends and acquaintances). God bless their souls. My mother-in-law survived this cancer. She had now one breast though and has gone through a lot: medications & chemotherapies.
So for today’s Five-Day, here are some helpful info’s:

1. What is breast cancer?

Breast cancer is a tumour in the breast that contains cancerous cells. A breast tumour is a lump created by an abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells. It can either be malignant (cancerous) or benign (not cancerous). Nine out of 10 breast lumps are benign.
There are a number of different types of breast cancer, including some rare types, such as inflammatory breast cancer and Pagets disease. However, there are two main types of breast cancer. These are described below.
Non-invasive breast cancers
Non-invasive breast cancers are cancers that stay within the ducts or lobes of your breast and don’t spread to surrounding tissue or to other parts of the body. The most common type of non-invasive breast cancer is ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). This is a very early type of breast cancer where the cancer cells are only found inside the milk ducts and haven’t spread into the breast tissue. In some cases, DCIS can develop into an invasive form of breast cancer.
Invasive breast cancers
Invasive breast cancers are cancers that have spread from the ducts or lobes of your breast into the surrounding tissue. The most common type of invasive breast cancer is called invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC), where the cancer cells are in the ducts and the breast tissue. Around eight out of 10 women diagnosed with breast cancer have this type. About one in ten women diagnosed with breast cancer have invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC), which starts growing in the lobes, but can spread to other parts of the breast. Both IDC and ILC can spread to other parts of the body.
2. Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Some women don’t notice any changes in their breasts and breast cancer is found when they go for breast screening.
However, many women notice a breast lump or a change in the overlying skin or nipple. About nine out of 10 breast lumps aren’t cancer, but if you do find a lump, you should see your GP straightaway. There are also other symptoms to look out for:
– a change in the shape or size of your breasts
– a different shape to your nipple – for example, it may turn inwards or become irregular in shape
– dimpled skin
– a rash on or around your nipple
– blood-stained discharge from your nipple
– swelling or a lump in your armpit
These symptoms may be caused by problems other than breast cancer. If you have any of these symptoms, visit your GP for advice.
3. Causes of Breast Cancer
The cause of breast cancer isn’t yet fully understood. However, there are certain factors that make developing breast cancer more likely. You’re more likely to develop breast cancer if you:
– are over 50 and have had either benign or malignant breast cancer before
– started your periods early or your menopause late
– have been exposed to radiation
– had a first pregnancy after the age of 30, or don’t have children
– eat a lot of high-fat foods or drink more than the recommended limit of 14 units a week of alcohol
– are overweight and have been through the menopause
– have a close family member who has had breast cancer
– take the contraceptive pill or hormone replacement therapy (HRT), though this increased risk is small
4. Diagnosis of Breast Cancer
Your GP will ask about your symptoms and examine you. He or she may also ask you about your medical history and examine your breasts.
Your GP may refer you to a specialist breast clinic where you’re likely to have further tests. The most common tests are listed below.
Ultrasound scan or mammogram. An ultrasound scan uses sound waves to produce an image of the inside of the body/or part of the body. This is usually done if you’re under the age of 35. A mammogram is an X-ray image of your breasts.
Biopsy. Your doctor will take a small sample of tissue or cells. This will be sent to a laboratory for testing to determine the types of cells and if these are benign (not cancerous) or cancerous.
If you’re found to have cancer, you may need to have other tests to assess if the cancer has spread. The process of finding out the stage of a cancer is called staging. The tests might include blood tests and a chest X-ray. Your doctor may also arrange for you to have a scan such as a CT (computerised axial tomography) or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan. These scans produce images of the inside of your body and can help your doctor to see if the cancer has spread.
5. Prevention of Breast Cancer
The NHS Breast Screening Programme invites all women between the ages of 50 and 70 for breast screening every three years. Breast screening means having a mammogram. This can help to show very early signs of any cancer.
You can also check your breasts regularly yourself. By being aware of how your breasts look and feel you can spot any changes quickly. See your GP if you notice any changes in your breasts.
Maintaining a healthy weight, breastfeeding, and not drinking excessive amounts of alcohol may help to protect against breast cancer.
Getting enough vitamin D may reduce your risk of developing a number of cancers, including breast cancer – although more research needs to be done to be certain. Vitamin D is also well known to be important for bone health.
Vitamin D is produced naturally by your body when your skin is exposed to sunlight and can also be obtained from some foods, such as oily fish. You may get enough vitamin D during summer by spending frequent short spells in the sun without wearing sunscreen (the exact time you need is different for everyone, but is typically only a few minutes in the middle of the day). However, do not let your skin redden. If you don’t get much sun exposure and particularly during winter months, taking up to 25 micrograms of vitamin D a day (two high-strength 12.5 microgram capsules) can help to make sure you get enough.
Always read the patient information leaflet that comes with your supplements and if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, ask your pharmacist or GP for advice first. Talk to your GP before taking vitamin D supplements if you are taking diuretics for high blood pressure or have a history of kidney stones or kidney failure.

Smurfs & Elephants

Four years ago, Milan was “invaded” by the Cows. These days, the city is being invaded by the “elephants”. Elephant Parade started last September 16, 2011 in Milan after Amsterdam, Rotterdom, Anversa and London. The open exhibit will be finished on November 15, 2011. They say there are 50 elephants around the city. we only “hunted” 12. i guess i can better hunt down the others if i have no kids with me. I usually don’t bring the stroller in going to the city proper. so, expect Zendra to cling on me. we don’t exactly know where the elephants are located, so that’s the real fun of the event, i guess. =)
After the exhibit, the elephants will be bidded at Christies, and the proceedings will go to the Asian Elephant Foundation.

We are scheduled to watch the film Smurfs (I Puffi), but we really go out earlier to hunt some elephants first. My son Jaki is more enthusiastic to search for the elephants. when he sees one, he exclaims, “Mamma, guarda…..dai andiamo fare le foto.” (Mamma, look, let’s have a foto). Then he keeps on memorizing the names of the elephants.
Zendra is a bit scared though. She doesn’t want to be photographed alone with them. I captured one moment. she thinks her brother Jaki is at the other side.
Hub and mom are still at work, so they just joined later after we watched the film.

(oops, i saw double fotos uploaded, never mind)
While walking around, a lady clown approached us and gave balloons formed into bear and flower, and of course, it’s not free. i donated 7euro (that’s all i have in my wallet, i seldom bring cash) to the ABIO (Italia per il Bambino in Ospedale). It’s a non-government organization for kids at hospitals. Then they filmed us. (Was that for tv feature?) i just smiled. One guy keeps on offering Jaki a “sword balloon”, but Jaki’s not interested. He’s 9! If the guy offered ben 10 or Hot Wheels, Jaki could have been more ecstatic. There’s a little coloring corner too in their booth. the other guy suggested we stop-over. i told them, “thanks, we need to catch a film”.
So, after the quick elephant hunting, we lined up for the Smurfs film. the gate opens at 12noon. the first showing will be at 12:30pm. I only paid 20euro (10euro each), for me and Jaki. Zendra is free. But, she has to pay extra 2euro for the 3D eyeglasses. was the theater in crisis too? the last time we watched Toy Story 3, the eyeglasses are free.
It’s Zendra’s first time to watch in theater. She was very excited and during the wait, she keeps on singing. there are extra foam seats for the kids to elevate them, so they can watch better. Happy Feet 2 sneak preview cheered up the kids. I bet Jaki will keep on tracking when will it be shown. it only says “coming soon”. Zendra fall asleep 15 minutes before the film ends. on our way to the exit she was awaken and sing the Smurfs song. “la la la la….”
We’re starving. it’s almost 2pm. We went to McDonald’s Galleria first. Ooops, too crowded. The long lines will starve us more. We tempted another McDonald’s in front of the Duomo. Same long lines. Even i use my card to pay for quick orders, the problem will be the seats. So, i told Jaki, “we can’t eat hamburgers for now, nor pizza. let’s go to Ciao Ristorante.”
I’m glad there are no lines and lots of seats. I got bucatini al ragu’, carne a lonza arrosto, pane and banana. Mom and my hub arrived and joined us.
After lunch we went to Decathlon and bought some Nike t-shirts and sweatshirt for Jaki. We bought the towel that my other son, CJ requested.
It was a fun Saturday for the kids and us adults as well. We went home around 5:30pm and two pests were knocked-out on the bus.
Another event next weekend for the kids. It’s a bit far away from home. I hope we’ll have the chance.

TGIF #28: Something Yellow

Not only kids love Spongebob! I actually do!

Are you ready kids?
Aye aye captain!
I can’t here you!
Ohhhhhhh! who lives in a pineapple under the sea?
Spongebob Squarepants!
Absorbent and yellow and porous is he!
Spongebob Squarepants!
If nautical nonsense be something you wish!
Spongebob Squarepants!
Then drop on a deck and flop like a fish!
Spongebob Squarepants!
Spongebob squarepants
Spongebob Squarepants
Spongebob Squarepants
Ahhha, ha, ha!

Here are 5 facts about spongebob:


Spongebob fact #1

Did you know that Spongebob’s original name was Sponge boy? But that name was all ready taken so they went with Spongebob!


Spongebob fact #2

There are 10 seasons of Spongebob total! And there will probably be more!



Spongebob fact #3


Patrick’s rock sometimes has a small living room ,and sometimes it’s just a huge bedroom. And other times it’s a whole house! You never know what it’s going to look like under Patrick’s rock.



Spongebob fact #4


Spongebob was created by Steve Hillenburg, a former marine biologist and science teacher who went to art school to study cartooning. Like spongebob, Hillenburg once worked as a fry cook at a seafood restaurant.



Spongebob fact #5


Did you know that Spongebob lives in a pineapple because pineapples are a common motif in Polynesian crafts. In addition, Hillenburg says he thought Spongebob “would like the smell” of a pineapple home. Smell is a very important sense for sea animals.




Keeping Fit

(don’t ask me how i got my fotos. automatic shot is cool!)

i have been jogging for the past weeks every morning (except when it rains). during weekdays, i used to have 15-20 minutes of jogging. i can’t run more because i need to prepare breakfast, and my kids for school. so every saturday and sunday, i run for 30 minutes or so. and i feel good. not that i’m thinking i could be slimmer. my goal is to stay fit even i’m “chubby”.
i’m slowly eating less and diminish the carbohydrates in my body.
so far, i am enjoying this jog-habit.
true to saying: no pain, no gain!
current status: 53 kilos, waistline 30inches
will update after a month if i lose weight or not. =)

Make Your Mamma Proud

Location: Creativa Ferrovia
Carpi, Modena
Client: Microbe for GRANT Spa
Models: Zendra Kiara, Linda & Viviana
The Microbe Catalogue is now available at Grant Flagship Store, Via Manzoni 40, Milan, Italy.
They only give 1 copy, so i just fotographed the whole catalogue to be able to share it on Facebook & Blogger.

Thanks Zendra. You made ME/all of us so proud!

#000: The 201st Entry (by CJ)

this is my son’s facebook note.

i guess it would be fun to share it here. that’s my son, inheriting my writing skills…. (i mean habit). =D

Everyone! eto na nga pala ang 201st note ko. (Teka, asan yung 200?)

Good question.

You see, i’ve been writing a lot of material since before high school. I really love to think of stuff; compelling, controversial, thought-provoking, haunting, hard-hitting ideas.

Through the years I have tackled about:

A dozen short stories, a couple dozen songs, the poems and proses, and a lot of editorials;

A whopping hundred blog entries, screenplays, scripts, a full cast of characters;

Collections of genius, catchy designs, a decent buffet for the eyes;

Refreshing and satisfying lines; a la Chicken Soup for the Soul and the likes..

But here’s the catch:

Only 25% of these ideas have been written.

10% are consisted only of fragments of ideas.

Another 10% are incomplete.

5% were successfully finished.

By this point, I really regret misplacing, forgetting, losing and not writing the 75%.

I was lazy. Careless. Disorganized. Dysfunctional. And I hated it very much.

So now, i’ll either dig up that 75% from this 2,500,000 Gigabyte storage in my cranium..

..or come up with new ones and continue the ‘archived’ ones.

But this time, i’ll try hard to make it work. Kahit pa medyo kinakalawang na rin writing skills ko in application. Kaya kayo nakatag dito, hindi dahil gusto kong maging showy or magbrag or whatever. Nakatag kayo dito kasi kayo yung best audience ko, kayo yung motivation ko para dito sa future works ko. Alam ko, there’s always a possibility na tamarin ako for no apparent reason; but with the aid of your patronage, your offensive-constructive-sarcastic criticism, your cathartic like-comment-shares..

..murahin niyo na lang ako kapag natatamaran kayo sakin. :))

Let’s begin, shall we? 😀

TGIF # 27: Something Sarah!

Eversince i heard the ANGEL song of Sarah McLachlan from the movie City of Angels (starring Nicolas Cage & Meg Ryan), i then began digging her music. Lovely! Here are five of her beautiful songs.
1. Answer
2. Do What You Have to Do
3. Don’t Let Go
4. I Will Remember You
5. Angel