How to get a South Korean Visa

I thought getting a Korean Visa would be easy.  Boy!  Was I wrong!

I think the Korean Embassy implemented stricter measures because of the influx of TNTs in their country.

In our case, aside from my family, there were some colleagues of mine that would also be travelling to South Korea, so there were batches for the application of the Visas.  Since I want to get it over and done with, I submitted all documents I thought were complete with the 1st batch!  Lo and behold, ours got returned because I didn’t attach my kids’ Birth Certificates.  I didn’t think that they would be needing it.  The travel agency didn’t include that in the list.  Maybe they thought they just need to list the requirements for employed individuals as it was an outing for our office.

For the 2nd batch till the last batch, it was the same, the Embassy wouldn’t accept our application because my daughter needed to secure a School Certificate that she’s still enrolled with her school!  As if my daughter would be left in Korea without us!  They are that strict!  Everyone already got their visas granted, it’s only my family’s that is left with the agency.  Until hubby got the School Certificate and submitted it, our visas were finally granted.

So here’s what you should submit to get a Korean Visa hassle free!

1) An Application Form properly filled out.  Page 2 is a guideline so you better read it before filling up the form.  But for Nos 30-31, the guideline said put “undecided” if you’re not sure yet where you would be staying, it’s okay if you really don’t know yet.  But if you already booked a hotel or a hostel or a guest house, put everything in your application form.  That way, they know you’re really bent on going to their country!  To be sure also, I attached a copy of the email confirming our booking.

2) 1 pc of Passport Size (Size 3.5cm x 4.5cm)  Photo taken and printed by a real studio.  They don’t accept DIY passport size photo.  So, spend that Php60.00 for a 6Pc Passport Size photo set and wait for an hour.

3) Photocopy of your Passport’s Info Page.  And if you have previously traveled to countries like Japan, USA or Canada, photocopy your Visas from the said countries as well.  Doesn’t matter if expired or not.  This is the first page in your passport.

4)  Bank Certificate – this is really a MUST.  They have to see that you have money to spend on their country and that you are really just going for a tour or a vacation.  And tell your bank that the following details need to be present on the Bank Certificate:

     a) Date Account was Opened (should at least be 6 months already)

     b) Amount should be correct and supported with a Passbook for Savings Account and a Certificate for Placements and other Time Accounts

      c)  Name in the Certification should be the same with name on your Passport.

For applicants who are employees, the following are additional requirements for you:

1)  Certificate of Employment with Income – this is requested through your company’s HR dept.  Mine took a week or so before it was sent to me so better request it early.

2)  Income Tax Return (ITR) – this is where they can see your annual gross income.  One of the very important things they need is for you to prove your financial capacity to travel.

For families who have Young Kids or Students, you need to present your child’s:

1)  Birth Certificate

2) Photocopy of School ID if kid is studying already

 3)  Original School Certificate – to certify that the child is enrolled in the school

For applicants who doesn’t have ITR or the above mentioned financial documents, you can present:

1)  A photocopy of the Certificate of Registration of your car.  Or a Land Title.  As long as it’s under your name!

2)  If you don’t have number 1, ask the person supporting you on this trip to request for a Bank Certificate with the purpose of applying a bank cert to support your visa application.

3)  Senior Citizens need to present their IDs and document number 1 or 2.  But I heard that Senior Citizens are usually granted visas, so it’s easy for them.  It’s not as though they could stay their in Korea as unregistered aliens and work right?

Here’s our Visa, with that out of the picture, I could continue planning now and finalize our itinerary!

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By the way, I paid Php 300.00 to the travel agency for each visa they processed.  That’s already a bargain for me since I am working and I don’t have time to go back and forth the Korean Embassy which is located in McKinley in Taguig City.

For those who doesn’t want to pay and ask a travel agency to process your visa, just go to the Embassy of the Republic of Korea with address McKinley Town Center, 122 Upper McKinley Road, Taguig City.  You have to go there as early as possible as they only accept applications in the morning.  They release documents in the afternoon hence half day acceptance of applications.  Be sure that your documents are complete so you don’t have to go back for resubmission.  It usually takes 7 working days for a visa to be processed.  Good Luck!

So there, I hope I was able to make clear what documents are needed to get a Korean Visa hassle-free!

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one fine day with the family!

It was a holiday and our eldest, Daphne wanted to go for a swim.  We gladly obliged since it will be good for the 2 kids.  Swimming is a form of exercise.  A few hours in the pool will really move every muscle in our body.  Aside from that, the kids can smell a breath of fresh air too! 

An impromptu getaway with the family spells b-o-n-d-i-n-g!

We started with a breakfast at Jollibee in SLEX.  While waiting for our food, took some pictures.

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As usual, Daphne had pancakes.  Even Denise had some too!

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After breakfast, we went straight to Treveia in Nuvali.  Treveia is an exclusive subdivision inside Nuvali.
Daphne immediately asked us if she could go swimming as soon as she saw the pool.  We changed into swimming attires and pumped her swimming vest.

Pictures of us in the pool to follow.  It’s in the other cam!

An hour or 2 in the pool made Daphne hungry and Denise tired.  Look!

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It’s a joy seeing my 2 babies happy.  Happy babies, happy mommy & daddy, happy family!

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So after swimming and packing up, we went to our favorite resto at Paseo, the Kanin Club.  Even if it’s past noon already, we still had to line up and wait for a table.

Finally, we were seated.  Time to eat!

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Our order is just enough. A bowl of tinapa rice (not in picture), seafood kare kare, dinuguan and escabecheng bangus.  Plus 1 order of unli white rice.  We mixed it up with the tinapa rice, so it wouldn’t be too salty!

Another request of Daphne was to feed the koi fishes at the Solenad Park back at Nuvali.  We bought 1 loaf of bread at Robinson’s Supermarket in Solenad 2, and while there, we were tempted to buy Nestle Crunch Ice Cream.  Daphne enjoyed her few minutes ride using the Grocery Car-t!

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While Denise got to taste her1st ice cream!

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Went back to Solenad 1 to grant Daphne’s request.  She brought 5 slices of bread to feed the fishies.

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So there! Family bonding need not be in a far place nor an expensive one. Another fun and memorable day to remember.

Hope you enjoyed!

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family day!

pics from my daughter’s family day…

we enjoyed our children’s performance. we enjoyed the games. we enjoyed the food.

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kids lined up before going to the other building where thr gym was located

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our family pic inside the gym before the event started

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we were surprised by the kids. they have 2 dance performances for the event. i love how daphne shaked her grooves. she’s a good dancer.

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we won the 1st game! na tensed ako!

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group shot with the guidance team

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and of course, picture with the teachers of section na2!

tiring day but super fun!

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family day in my daughter’s school

Today, August 3, is the scheduled family day for the nursery department in our daughter’s school. Being 1st time school parents, we don’t know what happens on a family day.  I asked around, they say it will be a day of eating and playing.  Maybe the school’s way to bond with both the students and their respective parents.  A day of getting to know each other, perhaps!

We were asked to bring some food for sharing.  Again, we asked around. We don’t have any idea what kind of food to bring.  Someone told me not to bring a lot for there will be a ton of food brought by the other parents.  So just not to be empty handed, we bought some cupcakes, mamons and cookies.  It’s individually packed, it’s convenient and mess-free!

For sure today will be a lot of fun.  Can’t wait!

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The Proposal – Reblogged with Pictures!

will TIU marry me?

things happen when you least expect it

I didn’t expect that Dennis will be proposing anymore. We’ve been preparing for the wedding for a few months now and almost everything is finalized already. So why propose pa? But, to my delight, he still did! And I really am so happy he did! He really planned for the whole thing and it was an event to remember. Not only was I with him, but we were with the whole family as well! They are our witnesses.

Maybe, you are now wondering what happened. Well, here goes…

It was a slightly rainy Sunday, we went to Ayala Greenfield Estates to shoot some pics for the wedding. Little did I know that it was going to be a day of surprises!

When we got to the Village Clubhouse, I was suddenly left by Dennis with KatKat, Shobe Liit, Shobe Trissie and Ahya Tristan at the clubhouse. Tumakas sya together with AnAn, Manny and Syoti Jr. Ako naman, unknowingly waited for him, yun pala, he had an advanced birthday surprise in store for me. After a short while, he came back. And he covered my whole face with my sarong!

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He lead me to the picnic area, kapit to the max ako sa kanya kasi wala akong makita totally. When he removed the sarong from my face, there’s a cake and lots of food in the table. Kaya pala he was texting me at 5am, nag prepare pa sya. They were singing happy birthday. Teary eyed na ako syempre. So, we ate and ate, until we’re so full na!

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I thought that was it, I didn’t think na he will propose pa. I think one surprise in a day is enough right? Wrong!

We did what we have to do after resting our bulging tummies. We played at the game room. We shot lots of pictures. We even played at the playground. Us all – really a picture of fun!

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Suddenly, the two of us were left naman by the whole group. Dennis told me Ahya will just get something from the admin at the other clubhouse. Ako naman, ok lang, since I’m with him. We talked and talked, we played with the continuous shot feature of the camera, we watched the sunset. We just stayed at the poolside, lounging at one of the sunbathing chair until my stomach started grumbling na naman. Madilim na that time, so I was wondering what happened to them na. But, on the other hand, they are keeping in touch with Denz, they keep on calling him. For sure, updating him.

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A little while after, Ahya called and said na pabalik na sila. While waiting for them, Denz told me he has another surprise for me and that I have to wait until my birthday (4 days pa!) till he tells me what that is. Kinukulit ko lang sya to tell me when Ahya arrived. Akala ko uuwi na kami, when the car opened, nobody was there, only Ahya. That’s the time Denz asked me to cover my eyes again.

In a few minutes, the car stopped somewhere. I got down the car, todo kapit na naman ako kay Denz, takot kasi ako madapa or something. Tahimik sobra, I’m getting giddy and nervous na. But, I still didn’t think a proposal is going to happen.

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He lead me to the swing area, when I opened my eyes, there were heart balloons, there were 2 wine glasses, an Asti Martini and candles were lit all over. Everyone was there, holding cameras, videocams. We sat down the swing, and that’s where it actually happened!

Denz told me how we’ve been through a lot and that he wanted to make it official, he suddenly pulled a rose out, it turned out to be the ring holder, he went down on his knee, and asked me “OFFICIALLY” to marry him! And he was wearing this shirt which said “will TIU marry me? (a smiley face with brace)” I didn’t let him finish anymore, I said YES of course, hindi ko na rin nakita ano design nung ring. I was crying and hugging him na eh. Everyone’s in front of us taking pictures. I am suddenly laughing and crying at the same time.

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We drank the Asti, toasted everyone, super happy kasi everybody close to me were there with us. I thanked Denz and I told him that having everyone there made it more special.

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So there, that’s our Proposal Story. Now, I have something to share with our future kids! J

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Expo Kid 2013

Nothing to do this weekend? Go to the Expo Kid!

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The Expo Kid 2013 is the ultimate summer activity fair!  It’s happening on March 2, 2013, Saturday, at the 500 Shaw Events Pavillion.  It’s the home of Kids Klub which specializes in different extra curricular activities for kids of all ages!

Parents, together with their children, can choose from a variety of summer activities presented in the fair for a fun-filled and productive summer!  Kids of all ages will enjoy the interactive activity areas.  And of course, the mommies will love the shopping bazaar!

So what are you waiting for?  Pre-register now to get free entrance (Though entrance is only php20.00 and will benefit MomShare Outreach Projects!) and Expo Kid giveaway!  Email [email protected] to register, or call 5707827!

See you there!

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Overpumping, is there such a thing?

Lately, I have been pumping as often as I could. I will be going back to work in a few days and I want to stash as much breastmilk as I could so that my baby will have enough supply while I’m gone. Also, this is my way of establishing my supply, aside from direct feeding, I express milk when baby doesn’t want to nurse.

These last few days, I noticed that my supply really increased. There’s your proof, the principles of demand and supply really works! So for breastfeeding moms out there who needs to increase milk production, keep on pumping!

If this is the case, then I guess there is no such thing as over pumping! I once read from a forum that one mommy does “power pumping.” What she does is pump every 2 hours, so in a day where there are 24 hours, she pumps 12 times! She swears by this method.

I also think that overpumping is a myth because even if we do not pump, we usually nurse our babies on demand. So if a baby is an active nurser, then she will nurse all the time too!

Well there you have it, overpumping is non existent! So go ahead, pump and nurse all you want!

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78 days Maternity Leave – its Importance!

In this post, I want to talk about the importance of the maternity leave SSS provides for its female members after giving birth.  60 days for normal delivery and 78 days for C-Section.

For both baby number 1 and number 2, I had a C-Section, so that automatically gave me 78 calendar days of maternity leave each.  Being a member entitles me that.  Another benefit is also being paid for the whole duration of the maternity leave, which is advanced by the company or the bank that I work for.  All I need to do is submit the required documents on time.

For a mom like me, this 78 days is very important.  In this period, I recover from giving birth or from the operation.  I regain my strength so I can take care of my newborn, which is no easy feat especially when you just underwent a major operation.  Aside from taking care of the baby, I need to take care of myself and my husband also.  And if you are a second time mother, you also need to take care of your firstborn. Supermom, is that you?

Being a breastfeeding mom, this is also the time I establish the bond between me and the baby.  Nursing as often as we could, all day and night we’re together.  Not only do I have to feed the baby and make him gain weight.  I also need to increase my milk supply so that I can store some milk before I go back to work, which is what I did.

And now, my 78 days is almost up.  On Monday, I will be going back to work.  Everything will change.  Adjustments need to be made again.

I’ll let you know soon!

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