Loc&Stor 24/7: World-class 24/7 self storage facility is finally here in the Philippines!

You will NEVER hear anyone say that their storage space is enough. Right?

Whether it is for your business or just for your personal space, you can never have enough space. Businesses expand and so does your family. And as they grow, you accumulate more stuff. Some of them you’ll need on a daily basis but some are just seasonal. At times, you want more home decor so you can change around its look once in a while. The ones you don’t need at the moment, you want to store away and out of sight. But where?

Talk to my kids and they will tell you that I have taken over a lot of space at home. They tell me they need more closet space and that my stuff take up too much space. I’m constantly decluttering but I know I still have a lot of stuff around. What to do?

Well, I recently got to tour a new world-class storage facility in Pasig called Loc&Stor 24/7. YES!!! This long-time storage facility service that you find in the U.S. and other First World countries is now in the Philippines!

Loc&Stor 24/7’s frontage

 

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Eye Mo, my childhood eye care brand, is back!

When you grow up with a popular household brand and it disappears from the market, there is all the more reason to celebrate its comeback. That is what several of us did a few days ago when we came together to celebrate the return to the Philippine market of Eye Mo.

 

Eyeritation

The Eye Mo brand was acquired from GlaxoSmithkline by Pharma Health Care Pte. Ltd (Singapore) in 2016. Pharma Health Care Pte. Ltd is part of the Combiphar Group of Companies, a leading multinational consumer healthcare company based in Indonesia. Established in 1971, Combiphar now manufactures and markets almost 200 prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, including Eye Mo. Combiphar is currently building a new sterile facility to further improve its manufacturing facilities.

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Scents & Sensibilities – fragrances for home and body

My friend Maizie calls herself a “handcrafter by profession”. She also has the nose for fragrances. And she has combined her hands-on craftsmanship with her passion for fragrances to create home and body fragrance products to transform what was once a hobby into a brand under the label Scents & Sensibilities.

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Mandaue Foam’s MF Lifestyle furniture line is for any lifestyle and for anyone

The name Mandaue Foam has always been associated with foam mattresses. And I thought that was all there was to them so I wondered why they were building this huge building along Shaw Boulevard. Did they need such a huge mattress showroom? Well I soon got my answer when I needed a mattress and decided to go get mine from their newly opened building.

To my surprise, I was met, not by stacks of mattresses, but by beautiful furniture for all kinds of rooms. All 3 floors of them! Foam mattresses were no longer their main source of business. They had expanded into lifestyle furniture!

It was just a matter of time before Mandaue Foam would introduce their MF Lifestyle furniture line to Metro Manila and I was glad to finally get to learn more about how a simple foam mattress manufacturer from (where else?) Mandaue City, Cebu, evolved into a lifestyle furniturer manufacturer.

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Tiger introduces innovations to kitchen appliances

Who has not heard of Tiger?

Even in my much younger days, Tiger was already a household name. The veritable Tiger lunch containers and water bottles were very well known and if you lugged one around your school, it was almost like a kiddo’s status symbol of quality and durability.

Fast forward to the present.

Some of my SoMoms friends and I had the chance to sit down with Lorraine Go-Munoz whose family has long been the exclusive distributor in the Philippines of Tiger products. We had an opportunity to sit down and hear a little bit about the company and some of its product innovations.

Tiger is a Japanese brand that has a 90-year history. It’s best known for thermal wares and cooking devices. At present, it enjoys a 23.5% market share in Japan.


Tacook Rice Cooker

I’ll never see rice cookers the same way again after seeing the Tacook rice cooker of Tiger. It is the first of its kind in the world and features synchronized cooking. You can cook the rice and side dishes simultaneously, programming it so that they both finish cooking at the same time. No need for the side dishes to grow cold while you wait for the rice to finish cooking.

How the Tacook rice cooker looks closed

The inner pan is where the rice is cooked. On top of it goes an orange plate for cooking side dishes.

The cooking plate of the Tacook is very different from the usual steaming plates available in other rice cooker brands. Most other brands have a steaming plate only with holes around the plate. The Tacook’s steam hole openings are just around the rim so that you can cook other side dishes without the juices falling into the rice below. Here’s a slide showing the difference.
Look at some of the different ways you can cook side dishes together with your rice.
The electronic front panel of the Tacook has different settings. Press “Synchro-Cooking” and it will time the cooking both your rice and side dish. When your rice is done, so is your side dish.

Front panel showing the electronically controlled features including synchro-cooking

Tiger Toaster

The Tiger Toaster works pretty much like other brands with some differences. The tray is wider than most that I am used to seeing. Underneath the solid tray is a detachable grill net, making it so much easier to clean than other brands.

Tiger Cordless Electric Kettle

At first, I was a bit surprised that this kettle cost more than usual electric kettles. But after studying its features, I now know why it is superior to ordinary electric kettles.

It has a double wall structure with inner container and outer body

It’s cordless! Charging is via a base that this kettle is inserted into.

A safety lock valve prevents accidental spillage in case kettle falls on its side.
To open you’d have to press on both sides

Here are the rest of its safety features.

A cup of water only takes 60 seconds to boil and the kettle emits 70% less steam than other types.

Tiger Electric Grill

The electric grill caught my eye besides the Tacook. I think I can reduce cooking with oil if I had one like this. Its got a far-infrared-ray pan with non-stick fluoropolymer coating (non-toxic). The pan itself can be placed atop a cooking range. Or put it on its own base and use electric current for cooking. A BBQ pan, with half of it bearing grated lines, seems great for cooking dishes like bulgogi on the grated side (to allow the juices to run) then moving it to the flat side once cooked. A glass cover top allows you to see what’s cooking without having to lift often to check.




PRICES

Toaster – PhP 2,500
Tacook rice cooker (5 cups) – PhP 4,799.75;  (10 cups) – PhP 5,499.75
Cordless kettle – PhP 3,199.75
Electric grill – PhP 5,999.75

WHERE TO FIND TIGER

You can find Tiger at the following places:

SM Department Stores: Aura, Bacoor, Cubao, Fairview, Las Pinas, Makati, MOA, Manila, North EDSA, Ortigas, San Lazaro, Sta. Mesa, Baguio, Bacolod, Cebu
Landmark – Makati, Trinoma
Robinsons Dept Store – Galleria, Ermita, Magnolia
Metro Gaisano – Market! Market!, Alabang, Ayala
Ansons Makati
Fishermall
Rustans Makati
Tiongsan Harrison Baguio City
Ling Chao Merchandsing, Tel # 244-0344
Republic Emporium, Tel #244-0370
Fair and Square, Tel #241-3272
Worldwide, Tel #241-3447
AEY Commercial, Tel #244-0135
Community Commercial, Tel #733-6372
Friend Ann Merchandising, Tel #734-4300
J and R Appliance, Tel #242-1576
New Sin Kian Heng, Tel #733-2129

Love@Home with Samsung

I’m a geeky momma. I love tech. And as a Mom, I always end up looking at appliances and home furnishings whenever I get the chance to window shop. So getting first dibs at Samsung Digital Home Appliances’ 2013 offering was a real delight and a chance to ogle the new stuff that Samsung was bringing into this year’s home appliance line-up.

Dubbed “Love@Home”, the launch featured five (5) must-have-in-the-home appliances using the latest technology and cool features that have become the signature of Samsung. On hand to help introduce the appliances to the audience were celebrity moms Daphne Osena-Paez, Tessa Prieto-Valdez and Rissa Mananquil-Trillo.

The Samsung Digital Air Conditioner

So what’s new with inverter airconditioners? That’s what I was thinking when this appliance was being introduced. After all, I already have 2 inverter aircon units at home. Imagine my utter surprise when Samsung announced that their new air conditioner had *wait for this* WIFI!

I know what you’re thinking – what for?

Think about this scenario. You are caught in traffic, on your way home. It’s hot outside and you are just raring to go into your airconditioned room and plop right into bed as soon as you get home. Most of us would only be able to turn on our air conditioner once we are home. With Samsung’s Digital Air Conditioner, you can remotely turn on your aircon and adjust its settings (temp, fan speed, vertical swing) from virtually anywhere you have an internet connection. You can do it from your car!

It also comes with a Smart Inverter Technology that Samsung says makes it 60% energy-efficient.

Inverter air conditioner with WIFI

App icon on Samsung smartphone
Settings direct from a smartphone…

…using WIFI!

The Samsung Digital Washing Machine

The top-of-the-line washing machine (W3050) is a beautiful piece to look at – chrome finish, icy blu LED display lights, dual cluster control panel, foldable glass door. Its control panel is located on top where access is easy. The Samsung Digital Washing Machine incorporates Wobble Technology, a feature that lets the machine be gentle on fabric while being tough on dirt and stains. In addition, its Digital Inverter Motor means energy efficiency and durability.
The diamond drum separates clothes so it tangles less.

Conventional washing vs Wobble Technology washing
The Samsung Digital Refrigerator
The line of Samsung digital refrigerators all have special features that spell energy-efficiency, innovation and fresh, crisp foods all the time. The ref comes with a 10-year warranty. Voltage control ensures flow of electricity is constant. It’s got a Moist Free Zone to better preserve fruits and vegetables as well as a built in deodorizing filter to eliminate odors. In some models, the freezer is not in its usual top location like conventional refs; this time, it is found on the bottom for safety of other food items. 
But what is not apparent on the outside is how practical and well thought out the ref is on the inside – easy, slide-out shelves, a movable vegetable box, a multi storage basket along the inside door just for cosmetics and medicines, a plastic guard along one shelf to protect water bottles. One model has an ice maker and ice dispenser, with double the space for making ice.

The Samsung Digital Microwave

I have a Samsung microwave oven (not yet inverter technology) which my kids and yayas use a lot for heating food. This new digital microwave that runs on inverter technology is a level up, with anti-bacterial properties, rust-resistant ceramic enamel cavity to prevent unsightly scratches, and energy-efficient performance.

The Samsung Digital Vacuum

These tiny digital vacuum cleaners pack a wallop. A Super Twin Chamber technology holds more dirt so you empty it out less. And adjusting the digital features provides the best suction adjustment for any type of surface.
Inverter technology is a long-term investment but will definitely save you money. We have seen the electrical savings at home with our own inverter air conditioners. Next time you think of buying an appliance or replacing your old one, think inverter and check out these digital offerings from Samsung.
tough-love-from-human-nature

Human Nature brings on Tough Love

Human Nature products are very much a part of my life. My shampoo and conditioner, insect repellant, hand sanitizer, lip balm, and some makeup are from Human Nature. It has been a conscious move on my part to switch from chemical-based stuff around the house to products which are not only gentle to my skin but also environment-friendly.

But recently I received 2 new Human Nature products which are NOT just gentle; they are TOUGH as well!!! And they should be, because they need to wash away dirt where it matters. At the same time, they are so natural that they can be discharged into the environment without polluting it.

This is the new home care brand that Human Nature recently introduced into the market – their TOUGH LOVE home care line — Tough Love Natural Dishwashing Liquid and Natural Liquid Detergent (100% Natural).

tough-love-from-human-nature
Both products have absolutely no phosphates, chlorine, bleach, dyes, enzymes, petroleum, synthetic fragrances, optical brighteners, and other harmful chemicals found in common household cleaners –a big plus for me since I have long chucked my chemical-based disinfectants, roach killers, household cleaners (some) and replaced them with non-toxic ones.

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Electrolux HUSH Happier at Home

I have a blender and two (2) vacuum cleaners at home. They do their job but I do not use them all the time. Why? Because the volume level is just too high for my low-noise tolerance ears.

See this little baby that looks like R2D2, the cute robot of Star Wars fame? It’s the newer of my two vacuum cleaners.

It does its job; it can handle both wet and dry cleaning. Almost perfect — save for its terrible noise level which cannot be adjusted. The first time I turned it on while trying to vacuum away the cobwebs from our bathroom ceiling, I almost went deaf. Because our bathroom was enclosed, the cacophony surrounded the entire small space, amplifying what was already very loud noise to begin with. Add to that the fact that it strongly ejected very warm air while it was running, making me wonder whether all that air being emitted was clean or whether some of the dust it was sucking in was being thrown back out into the air.

And this is my current dilemma. I need our home to be as quiet and as clean as possible.

You see, my husband just recently underwent a surgical operation. We spent our Valentine’s Day in the hospital. It has not been a week yet since we’ve come back home after spending two long weeks there and everyone around, including the kids, are tiptoe-ing around trying to be as quiet as possible so our patient can get his much-needed sleep (because who says you can sleep decently in a hospital, right???). I also know that sudden loud noise is jarring to the ears and can elevate blood pressure unnecessarily.

While we were away, the house went through general cleaning so our vacuum cleaner was put to good use. But now that our patient is home, he needs to rest most of the day and yet the room where he is in as well as the rest of the house need to be regularly cleaned to keep it free of dust to minimize risks of infection. How do I do that with my fully functional but extremely noisy (and possibly less-than-clean) vacuum cleaner?

His diet also requires a lot of fruits and vegetables so we have resorted to blending smoothies so he gets a good concentration of them. Wouldn’t it be neat if I had a silent blender to replace this 20-something year old blender of mine?

My dilemma may soon be over if I can get my hands on either or both of these Electrolux products:

#1 – The Electrolux Powermix Silent Blender

Showing the silent settings of the blender

Force without the noise…

#2 – The Electrolux Ultra Silencer Green
Silent but strong…
With attachments

Tops for me is the silent feature. Imagine the joy of being able to vacuum, for example, the patient’s room without disturbing his nap, or running the blender in the nearby kitchen without fear of disturbing him. For the Ultra Silencer Green, I love the fact that it cleans the exhaust air by more than 99.99% before releasing it again into the atmosphere. When I now have to be extra careful about sanitation, food handling, and contamination of whatever sort, such green features are always a PLUS for me.

In a sense, our life has changed. Weekends in the past were spent with the kids at home and sometimes with us going out to a family lunch or dinner. That is not possible for now as we always need to consider the needs of our patient. But the weekend is slowly becoming more special in a different way. It is becoming a time when family really comes first, when the patient who used to care for us and our needs now needs caring. It is the time when we have the most opportunity to show our love even in the worst of times. So having a quiet, relaxing weekend is part of that ambience that we are trying to foster.

It would be a wonderful opportunity to be able to use something like the Electrolux Ultra Silencer Green or the Electrolux Powermix Silent Blender to help us care for our loved one in a relaxed, quiet way. These 2 powerful but quiet appliances remind me of the saying “Silent waters run deep”. Indeed.

Find out more about the silent Electrolux products and its other offerings on their official website.
Follow @electroluxPH on Twitter.

Meralco opens more digital doors to its customers

I still remember the days of old when I was growing up. Whenever we had a power outage in our area, it was a challenge to reach Meralco. Phone lines were jammed all the time. We had to tune in to radio stations via our portable radio to find out what areas were affected and how soon power would be restored. No one had any idea if their area would be affected by maintenance of power lines. Basically, Meralco customers were pretty much in the dark (pun intended).

A new Meralco, however, has been emerging from its corporate shell. Going beyond its official website which was then a one-way, company-to-customers information dissemination tool, it began engaging the public on social media by creating a Twitter account (@meralco) and a Facebook page. Suddenly, access to Meralco widened beyond the capacity of phone lines as maintenance schedules were posted online and inquiries from customers were answered more rapidly.

In continuing plans to better inform the public and to improve public service, Meralco has revamped its website to make it more responsive to the public’s needs.

Homepage

When you land on its homepage, it gives you two different portals. FOR CUSTOMERS provides answers to customers’ concerns including electricity consumption, bill-related matters and new account applications. THE COMPANY is where you find corporate information like annual reports, business partnerships, stakeholder relations and investor information.

Since most of us are consumers, I’ll focus on the FOR CUSTOMERS portal. Here’s what you get when you choose that option.

The navigation bar on the topmost part lists the website’s main sections. At the bottom are links to frequently accessed information. The Quick Links on left sidebar provide more detailed information for customers and the center area is reserved for the most recent videos, photos and articles for customers to know.

The Meralco Appliance Calculator (AppCal for short), which is a link under Quick Links, brings you to a web application where customers can compute and gauge their electricity consumption based on the different appliances they use at home. Computations can be specific to the type of appliance, corresponding wattage, and frequency of usage. The AppCal calculates cost per hour, day, week, and month. The AppCal also takes into account the prevailing generation charge for the month.

For those with smartphones and tablets, AppCal is now a FREE downloadable app. I’ve downloaded it on my ipad.

Meralco is setting up more innovative plans, one of which is offering prepaid electricity, much like a mobile phone’s prepaid load feature. Their other innovation plans can be read in my post HERE.
Find Meralco in these digital areas: