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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tintin 2.0 | New Thing #2: Start a Reading Journal

I thought of including in my 30-day challenge a NEW THING about books. Maybe I could write a novel. Maybe I'll try my luck at getting published! Haha I know that these won't be possible with a full-time work, a baby at home and a graduate class on the side and an inability to put meaningful words together. Hahaha Unless I work at home and I have a house full of help, and I actually have an ability to write clearly, I won't have a shot at a byline. 

But come on, if Twilight can find readers, there's no reason for me not to have a reader. No offense to Twilight fans but ooopps, there goes my only reader: my baby sister. Hahaha I won't bash Stephenie Meyer's work again, bumalik ka lang sa blog ko. Promise. Hahahaha I'm kidding. Twilight is fun.

Well, I couldn't think of anything new that wouldn't take up so much of my time. So I decided I'll visit a city library, and that's number 18 on my list! What else? Hmmmm. I know there's something more I can do that's related to my love of books and reading. And so, I bought a Reading Journal. I know, what a lame twist. Haha I could have written a novel, or joined a reading club or maybe something intellectual. Hehe But I have to stick to things that are do-able, things that a mother could do without feeling guilty that a baby and a home are taken for granted. The Reading Journal wins.
What do I do with this? This is where I put my thoughts about the books I've read. This is just like the theme writing we did in high school, except I get to choose what book to read! It's like giving reviews on Goodreads, except this one is on paper. Plus I get to practice my rusty writing. Here's to hitting two birds with one stone! Yay! 

Barnes & Noble Reading Journal (on top of a wedding mag I'm currently reading)

Monday, April 29, 2013

UP Survey

I'm about to return to UP this June to finish what I have started. It's a graduate class I have enrolled in, back in 2008. It's going to be very difficult, what with the baby and the full-time work, but it's something I have to finish. I owe it to Zeff to be able to say that his Mommy never started something she couldn't finish. I want my son to be able to say that about me. ;) 

Incidentally, I saw this post by a block mate on Facebook. Let's remember the good times!

Photo Source
1. Student number?

2. College?
UP College of Mass Communication (Plaridel Hall)

3. Ano ang course mo?
BA Broadcast Communication

4. Nag-shift ka ba o na-kickout?
Hindi. Graduated on time. .05 shy of becoming a Cum Laude. What a nightmare! I shouldn't have taken it easy. LOL 

5. Saan ka kumuha ng UPCAT?
Sa Bicol University, Legazpi (Forgot the name of the Auditorium)

6. Favorite GE subject?
Kas II, Journ 101, Psych 101, STS sa undergrad; Sa MA would be EDFD 201 and EDSP 222.

7. Favorite PE?
Running, of course ;)

8. Saan ka nag-aabang ng hot guy sa UP?
 Walang hot guy sa UP, kung meron man, sa Eng'g cguro? Kasi may funny guy dun. Hahaha

9. Favorite prof(s)
Sir Angelo Palmones, Sir Teodoro and Sir Lanuza (SocSci II)

10. Pinaka-ayaw na GE subject.
Philo I - I think this was the most hated subject of my time. Haha

11. Kumuha ka ba ng Wed or Sat classes?
Not in my undergrad years, pero sa M.A. kelangan

12. Nakapag-field trip ka ba?
Yes, Ilocos for Hum II, Cavite for Kas I

13. Naging CS ka na ba or US sa UP?
Sadly, no.

14. Ano ang Org/Frat/Soro mo?
UP Broadcasters' Guild, UP Mayon,  UP Zeta Lambda Epsilon

15. Saan ka tumatambay palagi?
Sa Vinzons lobby, UP Mayon Tambayan (sa Vinzons pa rin) McDo/Jollibee Philcoa, UP Bliss

16. Dorm, Boarding house, o Bahay?
Boarding house sa UP Bliss

17. Kung walang UPCAT test at malaya kang nakapili ng kurso mo sa UP, ano yun?
Nursing at that time (yun ang peg ko talaga) pero I had to be in Diliman kasi malapit relatives sa QC. UP Manila was too far. They didn't trust me enough na magbyahe from Fairview, QC to Manila everyday.

18. Sino ang pinaka-una mong nakilala sa UP?
Si Rolan Arellano, a blockmate. And sumunod na yung mga girls who would be my very close friends and ninang ng anak ko. Jen Lan, Jen Dol, Jopay, Kate and Bambie.

19. First play na napanood mo sa UP?
I can't remember. We were made to watch plays often as part of projects and writing assignments.

20. Name the 5 most conyo orgs in UP
Can't remember the names pero any org nasa loob ng Econ at BAA.

21. Name 5 of the coolest orgs/frats/soro in UP.
UP Mayon syempre, UP BroadGuild

22. May frat/soro bang nag-recruit sa yo?

23. Saan ka madalas mag-lunch?
Vinzons, Lutong Bahay, Lutong Kapitbahay (pag mahaba ang pila sa LB), Greenwhich Philcoa or McDo at Jollibee

24. Masaya ba sa UP?
Super saya! The most amazing place in the whole universe! :)

25. Nakasama ka na ba sa rally?
EDSA dos.

26. Ilang beses ka bumoto sa Student Council
Never akong nakaboto. I don't remember making the effort to vote.

27. Name at least 5 leftist groups in UP.
The Collegian. Hehe

28. Pinangarap mo rin bang mag-laude nung freshman ka?
Oo naman pero I took it easy nung nasa college na. Cguro na-burn out ako nung high school. I told myself, I'll take it easy sa college. The laude dream was overshadowed by the graduate-from-UP-on-time dream. Hehe

29. Kanino ka pinaka-patay sa UP?
I hated production classes. Di ko nga alam bakit ako nag-BroadComm. Haha

30. Kung di ka UP, anong school ka?
Journ sa Bicol University or Nursing sa Aquinas University

Project 2016

Gang of Three

Let's have a church wedding.
A church wedding would be perfect when Zeff's a little older, maybe when he turns 3 or 4?
I will have a church wedding, whether you like it or not. 

Hahaha What a brat! 

My husband has heard these words a million times. But I love that he kept reassuring me that I will most definitely get to wear that white dress even without me pressuring him. Haha For the record, I would never pressure anyone to do something against his will. Although I could be persuasive. Hehe I could argue FOR the merits of the things that I want most. Haha And I can also argue AGAINST the things that I don't like! It's a good thing my husband is very patient with me. :)

He never gets tired of hearing about my recent finds on wedding magazines and on Pinterest. He even has his own inputs about the whole thing! He already picked the shoes he's going to wear. (My husband's such a little vain monkey.)

A little background: Most people don't know but we were married in a civil ceremony while I was three-months preggers. It wasn't exactly my dream wedding but I had everyone who mattered in that very short and simple ceremony. The preparation was rushed. We had the necessary licenses and papers ready a few weeks before he was about to board a ship that (again) would take him away for months. And who would bother with wedding preparations when you're three months on the way and you don't really feel pretty? Chos! 

Six months after I have given birth, he came home. We were busy taking care of our son that the W-word was seldom discussed. It wasn't completely forgotten, though. We would occasionally talk about it. I would bombard him with magazine clippings and announcement of wedding expos so it's kind of difficult to avoid. Haha We never went to any of those events, though and no, we didn't book any suppliers yet. The baby occupied most of our time and I wouldn't have the days spent any other way.

Before he went away again for work, he promised that we'll talk more about it and plan the whole thing, not only because I asked him, but because he said it's what he should have given me in the first place and it's what I deserve. Awwww. Such a sweet husband. Thank you, Lord for this beautiful human being. ;)

I am not most girls.  Don't get me wrong but I grew up not caring about my looks or my clothes. I will be turning 30 in a few weeks and I have yet to learn how to apply proper make-up. I don't wear make up to work. I don't wear make-up at all. I know I have excellent taste in clothes (yep, I know) because I just know what looks good and what doesn't. But that doesn't make me an expert on clothes! Haha
What I mean is that most girls would know their way around weddings and fashion and make-up and everything else girly. It would be a breeze for them. Choosing the clothes for the entourage would be like a walk in the park and would feel like a regular shopping day.  Me? I'd probably approach the whole wedding preparations like a project, minus the 'keen sense of fashion and trends'. Preparing for this wedding will really be a huge challenge for me.

In between caring for a baby and work and house hunting, I found time to do my own little research about the wedding. I spent long hours on Pinterest. Some of my pins have been tucked away in a secret board on the pinning website. I hid some of the better ideas.I still would like to see some element of surprise when  my guests finally see what I could come up with for our wedding noh? But I don't have a creative bone in my body so please, don't get your hopes up. Haha Just show up and have fun, please!

Hold on! Take a deep breath. Let's take this one step at a time.
Thursday, April 25, 2013

Tintin 2.0 | New Thing #1: Join an online contest.

I had this one new thing on my list but I never thought it would go first  in the Tintin 2.0 - A 30-Day Challenge. This is because an opportunity presented itself. Taste Central is  giving away a super elegant stroller

The goal is not to win, but to take the plunge and join. This was an easy one so may konting daya. Haha Wait for the more adventurous stuff! :)

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Tintin 2.0

Photo taken from the Web
This post has been inspired by The Happiness Project (which I am currently reading, whenever the little tyke is asleep and I don't bring home stuff from work). It has been further influenced by a TED talk from Matt Cutts: Try something new for 30 Days. What a coincidence, right? I stumbled upon this while I'm trying to finish The Happiness Project! The universe must be telling me something. I've got to do it! 

The concept is not new to me and probably not new to you either. As a reader who leans towards topics of technology, non-fiction, self-improvement, existentialist stuff and all that crazy pop psychology, I would have to give in to what these books are saying and just get it out of my system.

Presenting... Tintin 2.0. A 30-day Challenge on my 30th year here on earth. 


I am going to try out THIRTY NEW things and I will blog about it. I have no idea how I am going to do it or what those thirty new things are, to begin with. I am just going to start with something, anything. But I am not going to give you the list now. I agree with Derek Sivers and I will follow his advice: "Keep your goals to yourself". This way I'll be more likely to finish and achieve my goals

How about you? It doesn't matter if you're turning 30 or 40 or you just want to make your life a little more interesting. It doesn't matter if you want it done for the next 30 days or if you want it on the next 30 years. Whatever timeline works for you.
Try something new for 30 days! Start now! :) 
Monday, April 22, 2013

In A Relationship

Photo Source
I never thought I'd find myself in a long distance relationship. In fact, I never thought I'd find myself in a relationship! Period. Haha
True. I was much too cynical. I was also not into dating and men. I avoided both like a plague.  Haha Plus I had better things to do than wait for my 'knight-in-shining-armour'. Duh. I had better use of my time than pine for a guy who probably doesn't even know I exist. (Naks! May pinaghuhugutan? Haha  
But God had better plans for me. He put me in a long distance relationship with my first truly official boyfriend, who is now my husband. Avoid it all you want, God must have been laughing at me for being bullheaded about all these. God found a way of bringing the two of us together. And then I tried to put an end to it once, because we're great at being friends and I didn't want to ruin things for us, and then we got back together and then tried ending it again, well, we all know what happened after that. Haha Pakipot pa.
I have learned not to question God's will for me. Because in my husband, I found the most patient friend and the funniest and most lovable hubby in the world. :) It's really just all love and laughter when we're together. Sometimes I feel that we're not husband and wife, we're just very good friends who happen to be married. Haha You should hear us both laugh hysterically. We really are both mental. Happily mental.
And when we do fight, we just ignore each other. I would hurl words at him (but of course, still careful not to say anything I would regret later). My mother taught me never to say anything in anger. My husband won't ever let us stay mad at each other for a long time. He would be the one to apologize even though it isn't his fault we had a fight in the first place. He concedes most of the time because he knows I'm too proud and he just couldn't stand fights.  
I am not one to mince my words, I say whatever is on my mind but he's too patient with me (I think because he's the eldest child and is used to dealing with bratty siblings). I also thinks he tolerates me because he's at sea for months and he welcomes those kinds of tantrums from the lady in the house. Haha He said it himself, "Palagi ka na lang may tantrums, inaabuso mo ang kabaitan ko." I know, Baba, that's why I'm careful, too, before I throw any tantrums. Hehehe 
Sometimes my heart just melts when I hear, "Minsan na nga lang tayo magkita, inaaway mo pa ako." And I vow never to get mad again. Hehe
That's the kind of married life I've been secretly dreaming about, beyond all the cynicism and the self-proclaimed promise of single-blessedness. What God gave me was more than I asked for, more than I deserve. We may spend most months apart but we both are committed to making this relationship work and constantly ask for God's guidance. 
I would never wish a long distance love affair on anyone because I know it's the most difficult thing in a relationship. But with the right attitude and mindset, coupled with prayer, couples can survive this. The FB post below resonates what I've been experiencing. Super relate talaga!
 Read on...
Long Distance Relationship aren’t always ideal. In fact, they’re really tough. You spend countless of hours just talking through a phone or through a screen. You can’t see the person when you want to or when you most need them.. You can’t hug, you can’t hold hands, you can’t kiss. You lose the intimacy in a physical sense. But then, Your relationship becomes based on each other and nothing else.

You learn to communicate,because a long-distance relationship without communication is nothing.

You learn to trust, because you can’t always see or know everything the person is doing.

You learn to sacrifice, because someone’s always going to lose a bit of sleep from the time difference.

And lastly, you learn to appreciate.

So often, we take for granted the people and relationships in our lives because we think they’ll always be there.

But When you only have a limited amount of time with a person, you learn to appreciate and cherish every single moment you have with them.

When you finally see that person after weeks or months of seeing them only through a computer screen, it is one of the greatest feelings in the world.

When you’ve waited for something so long and you finally have it, you cherish it. The key to a long-distance relationship is faith.

If both of you are not willing to give up,

If both of you are willing to stand up and still try after every time one of you or both of you fall.

“Distance isn’t for the fearful, it’s for the bold ".

...It’s for those who are willing to spend a lot of time alone in exchange for the little time with the one they love.

It’s for knowing a good thing when they see it, even if they don’t see it nearly enough.” ♥ ♥ ♥

Sunday, April 21, 2013

The Happiness Project

Finally! My very own copy of The Happiness Project.  I have been looking for this the entire first month of the year and the bookstores I have visited were all out out of stock.

This weekend's visit to Fully Booked at Eastwood Mall proved to be fruitful. They have re-stocked! And I, left the bookstore smiling. :) Already, the happiness project has begun! Hehe 
Had to wrap it right away, of course, for fear of breaking the delicate spine. :)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Baby Book, Updated!

It's Saturday! Which means I could spend some bonding time with Zeff and read to him. :) 

This also means I can do some housekeeping and some decluttering while he's asleep. As I was cleaning the cabinets, I saw Zeff's baby book. It has been three weeks since I last updated it. 

After browsing through the pages, I realized that Zeff is actually above the 85th percentile in terms of weight and height of babies his age. He also has more than tripled his birth weight but his pediatrician wasn't worried. He's still very much healthy and he's not obese, so no worries there.

He can also already play a simple ball game and can throw a ball hard. Chalk that up to his super active cousins' constant ball games with him. Check that milestone off the list! I really am a happy mom

Zeff's baby book is more than just a baby book.  It keeps track of the vitamins he's taking and the medicines he's taken when he got sick, (which was very rare) and when he's due to change vitamin drops.  And you know why it's more than just a baby book, it is what I show the HMO people for when I reimburse all those ultra expensive vaccines! Hehe Free vaccines. Music to my ears!

The book is helpful not just because it keeps the baby's immunization record but it also helps me check on his developmental milestones. 

Although I'm sure most moms know that every child develops in a unique and different pace so don't rely too much on the milestone checklist. Don't worry if he doesn't do some stuff he should be doing at a certain age. But hey, I'm no expert. It's best to check with the doctor if you have some questions about your child's development. 

How about you? When was the last time you checked your baby book? :)

Reading Ritual

These are the books that I read to him since he was a few days old. Now he could easily identify the characters and he even picks the book he wants!
I grew up surrounded with books and reading materials. They were all over  the house because my mother was a teacher. She made sure that we develop a love for reading. It was an unspoken rule that everyone must pick up a book and read. 

Among the siblings, it was me who mostly took this rule to heart. I ended up enjoying it. It was a good thing my mother was never the type to force things on us. I don't remember being forced to read or study to get good grades. I don't recall my parents asking me to take home awards or good grades. The good grades were just a result of her guidance and her encouragement and my father's unfailing support and of long hours spent reading and enjoying books.

This is something I want to pass on to my son. I want him to enjoy reading. When I was still pregnant, I read to him every day. There was a Reader's Digest app on my iPhone that I used to read to him. It might not have a huge impact but I knew that I was communicating with him while he was in my tummy.

And now that he's just turned one and showing a lot of promise (hehe), I know I'll be there to guide him so he enjoy reading, too. I will read to him every day so it becomes a habit. I will always be around for my son's reading time and will do anything for my little reader.
Thursday, April 18, 2013

Toothy Tot

That's Zeff's super sweet smile. The one that greets me every morning and is the last thing I see before we say nighty-night.

I know. Allow me to be biased here but I have a feeling that my son will be a little heartbreaker. That's why I'm trying to raise him right so he doesn't hurt any girl's feelings in the future. Haha Lakas makabuhat ng bangko! Hayaan nyo na 'ko. I won't judge you when that time comes and you think the world of your only son. :) 

Well, going back to his toothy smile, I was advised by my baby's pedia to start cleaning his teeth the moment his first tooth came out. And clean we did. He now has four 'fully-out' teeth and two more that's starting to show.
Yaya has been very keen in cleaning them for baby since I'm away at work during the day. Zeff doesn't mind. He even waits for it and eagerly opens his mouth every time his Yaya takes out the finger toothbrush. When he's not in the mood, we use a wash cloth/lampin that's been sterilized and force our way in. I'm kidding. We brush it gently with the cloth, of course. ;)

I have also bought him his first training toothbrush but I have not used it on him yet. I will have to wait till next week, which would be after his first visit to his pediatric dentist. I have to wait for the doctor's advice on what toothpaste to use.

I'm glad my company's health card has dental coverage for my dependents as well. I know it might be a little OC taking him to the dentist to have his teeth checked this early but what have I got to lose? I am going to bring him to the clinic anyway for his monthly vaccine shots so why not take him to the dentist, too? That's maximizing time.

I am really not the best person to suggest early visit but the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry strongly recommends it. ONE baby tooth + ONE pediatric dental visit = ZERO cavities.

The pediatric dentist should give me 5 stars for doing a good job for starting early and for keeping my baby's good dental health. ;)
Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Missing you on our Monthsary :(

Happy 33rd Monthsary, Baba! I love you very much! :)

Baba and Babylove
Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tuesday Push: Be Better!

Photo taken from the Web

Monday, April 15, 2013

Happy with His First Haircut

That's his Yaya Rina hiding behind him :)

Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Power of Prayers

I drafted the post below on the eve of my son's birthday. I was thinking of posting it on Facebook but I had a crazy morning on my son's most special day so I forgot all about it.

Exactly a year ago today, I was given the most beautiful gift: the birth of the most adorable baby in the world. Superlatives aside, the circumstances of his birth were far from perfect. I had to undergo an emergency C-section  and a week after giving birth, I was rushed to the hospital and spent days in the ICU due to postpartum eclampsia. All of these happened while my husband was away. 

While my healthy baby waited for his mommy to come home, I was battling with hypertension. I felt weak and inadequate and suddenly scared of my mortality and was filled with fear of not seeing this baby grow up. But with God's grace, I recovered and have since seen him grow up to be a smart little boy. I am grateful for this undeserved gift of caring for and raising another human being. My only wish is that he becomes a better version of me and of his dad. Hopefully, he'll be more God-fearing, wiser, stronger and healthier, friendlier, kinder and much much happier.

The truth is, this is my daily prayer. This has become a part of my daily conversations with God. I will always be grateful to our Lord for giving me the chance to live and see my baby grow up. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Birthday Boy

This amazing birthday banner was made on such a very short notice. I have my colleague, Randel and his wife, Rowena to thank for making my baby boy's party a little more colorful!  

They also made these pretty pop-ups for the invitation. 

For inquiries or orders, visit Forza Prints

And no, they didn't ask me to do this, nor was I paid to do this. Haha I am just a happy customer/mom.

More details on my babylove's first birthday on succeeding posts...  
Thursday, April 11, 2013

Captured Card

This is a late post.

I lost my BPI ATM to a BDO machine a few days ago. I was about to withdraw money for groceries when the machine won't show the instructions and won't let me key in my PIN! The terminal just keeps showing some informational and commercial clips. I waited and waited but the screen won't go to where I needed it to be. I cancelled the transaction but the card won't come out.

It took a few minutes before I realized that my card has been captured. It's a good thing there was no one waiting in line behind me, or I would have looked a little desperate because I kept trying to get the card with my fingernails (they're not even long) and praying silently for the card to come out. "Please, please come out. I need to buy my baby some milk."

It turned out I would have to get the funds elsewhere for the groceries that day because I couldn't retrieve the card. It was a holiday (April 9, Araw ng Kagitingan) and the banks were closed. I used my husband's ATM for the groceries instead and I called up BPI right away.

I was told that if it's another bank's ATM machine that ate up my  card then I would have to call them first. I realized this would take longer since BDO will probably take some time in getting it out of the machine and they won't be able to replace my card so I told the lady on the phone that I won't call BDO anymore and they should just have it replaced. BPI agreed. They had my card blocked and the replacement will be available in 3 business days.

It's an inconvenience since I have to do an over-the-counter withdrawal if ever I needed money from my own account. Three days is still three days. My son consumes 350g of formula milk in less that amount of time (haha) but I can't do anything about it anymore. All I can do is wait. 

Photo taken from the Web

Lesson Learned: Minimize withdrawals from ATMs that are not your bank's to avoid experiencing the same thing.
Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wiggly World

Zeff started walking yesterday! As in a real short walk. Five (or was it six? I lost count) very small steps that almost caused me to scream with delight. But I didn't. I did not scare him this time. He bravely walked the distance between Ate Rina and me so gracefully. The first time he tried standing on his own, I shrieked like a mad woman and my son got so scared it took him several weeks more to attempt to walk again. This time, I know better. Hayyyy.... Nakakaloka. Para akong nanalo sa Lotto. LOL

I thank the Lord for this amazing development. I know too, that it's going to take extra more work from me and his nanny now that he's more mobile and he's always wanting to explore new things and new places. This also means we have to clean every nook and cranny of the house since I never know when I'll find him next if he starts wandering around. Apart from all the things I want to prepare and I want to do now that he's started walking, I just want to enjoy this phase, this many firsts, many changes that's slowly making its way in my son's life. 

I am a happy mom and I love it!

His first few attempts at walking.

Saying Goodbye to My First Ever Blog

Photo taken from the Web
Hey there. Welcome to my new blog. This is a pilot post for my new page and I feel giddy just writing about it.  I've moved from here to this awesome new blog.

If you read through the old blog, you'll find that the transition is a bit surprising and this new blog is quite a huge improvement, theme-wise and content-wise, if you ask me. :)

I had maintained a blog for most of my adult/working years mainly to chronicle my adventures and misadventures, my busy/idle times at work,  sweet moments with family and friends, meaningful discoveries about this journey called, Life. Uhuh. I can be very cheezy when I choose to be. Haha

I had also put up the site because of the tons of pictures I wanted to post online during the pre-Facebook era. My posts would occasionally run several pages. It was  a photoblog with a ranty feel. But now that everyone else is on Instagram, it's much easier to manage all my digital pictures.

And because I mistook the blogosphere as a sounding board for all my angst-ridden yuppy outlook, the old blog had been full of negativity, self-centeredness and mainly showcased my despair and mid-life confusion (crisis?). I would rant in between work breaks about how inconsiderate my boss was, and how he drives me crazy, as if the lunch breaks that's spent gossiping about the boss wasn't enough. I would go on and on about how unfair life was that even with all my efforts and recognitions, I can't seem to be contented with all my achievements. I had not known true love nor true commitment. Nor did I picture myself as a mother at 29. In the old blog, I wrote about things that I felt strongly about, hate and love, big dreams and even bigger failures. That was it.

That was the pre-marriage and pre-Mommy me. Now, I can't seem to stop raving about my life, my baby, and months after giving birth, I would still gush over the huge miracle that is my little boy.

Now, all of that needed space because not everyone on Facebook would appreciate being bombarded by tales of raising a kid. Not everyone would be able to understand the musings of a first-time mom.

There are a lot of things I want written down somewhere so I'll have something to remind me about the things that I love and  the things that made sense to me. This, I think, is the perfect place for it. Here's to a new beginning! Enjoy reading. :)