7 Things To Do When You're #TeamBahay With #NoBudget This Bakasyon

Getting tired of the eat-sleep-repeat life?

Have you ever been sooo bored that you started taking every online quiz on the Internet? Or scrolling through the ends of Facebook, reacting to every single dog post? Because SAME. Vacations are really tricky, it is given to us so that we can relax and unwind, but due to not having any allowance for those succeeding weeksand failure to save up some moneywe can’t do anything according to what we have planned in mind. Hence, we just stay at home and do the never-ending cycle of eat-sleep-repeat!

But being #TeamBahay means you are probably creative and a master of innovation when it comes to having new stuff to do around the house and scouting for affordable places to hang around the metro. So here are some tips and a list of activities that you and your friends can do all throughout vacationwith little to no money required!


Old school tambay

Up your usual tambayan activities with these tips:

  • If you and your barkada are always craving food, you can follow recipes on food channels like Tasty, Cookat, Binging with Babish, or Yummy Magazine (for local dishes) and try replicating thembut just make sure not to burn the house down. Then do a Mukbang!
  • You can go for Pinoy card games such as Pusoy Dos or Unggoy Ungguyan or the timeless UNO, Jenga, King’s Cup, or the latest card game, What Do you Meme? If you and your barkada don’t have any cards or board games, you can always resort to playing the famous Never Have I Ever.
  • If you don’t have money to rent karaoke rooms, open YouTube or Smule, get your wireless microphone, and voila! You've got free karaoke! (I 100 percent recommend this activity for your friends who are going through a sad holiday breakup. “Alexa, play 'The One That Got Away' by Katy Perry.”)

Getting yourself to exercise for the nth time

For years, some of us have been making it our New Year’s resolution to live a healthier lifestyle by exercising and just basically getting off the couch. So, why not have a headstart right now while the next semester is still far away? You can still achieve that goal despite not having enough budget for a gym membership. Install apps like Nike Training Club for free or watch YouTube videos to guide you on your fitness journey, then grab a yoga mat to start. Encourage your best friend to also hop on that fitness train with you because, as the song says, “Two is better than one!”

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An indie movie date

Instead of watching one series over and over again at home, you might want to try visiting underrated small movie houses that screen local and international indie films. You may try Cinematheque Centre Manila (Ermita, Manila), Black Maria Cinema (Mandaluyong City), and Cinema Centenario (Quezon City). What’s exciting about these movie houses is that their fees range from FREE to 200 pesos only! It is also perfect for an affordable date night if your S.O. is a movie junkie *winks* (thank me later).

Getting back to what you love

A break from academics is the best time to reconnect with your passions and creative side. Go get that guitar and start making songs again, start sketching portraits, or go on a photo walk to add great photos to your collection. You can also start looking for crash courses on the Internet if you’re still learning about something that interests you. It is never too late to get back to pursuing your passions.



If you really can’t think of something to do this bakasyon, try organizing your room to start off the new decade with a clean ambiance. Begin with clothes that you have already worn out, see if you can still upcycle it into a new look or compile it and give it to organizations that are looking for donations for chosen communities.

Also, try disposing of useless things around your roomthings that “don’t spark joy” anymoreto add more space for new ones. Decluttering is not only for tangible materials; you might as well want to declutter and resolve all personal issues and emotional baggage that this year has brought you. Reflect on things and try to revert your thoughts to self-improvement, self-love, healthy relationships, and future vocations. Start your decade right!

Cheap thrills

Instead of those ordinary fast food trips, why not up your game with your friends and try different affordable food crawls in the metro that will satisfy your cravings for different cuisines? Try visiting Binondo for Asian cuisine and Poblacion for a variety of cuisinesfrom Mexican to seafood, and Pinoy food. You can also try food parks like Sagul Food Park, StrEAT, and Uno Cinquenta. What’s great about this idea is that you are introduced to a wide variety of options for your food cravings. It’s like a treasure hunt with the gang. You can achieve this satisfying experience with only 300 to 500 pesos on hand.


Or just get lost in memes

Nothing beats scrolling through good ‘ol memes and making yourself laugh all day long. Timeless and top-of-the-game memes can be found on Reddit, 9gag, and Tumblr. These applications will give you a different experience than your usual social media platforms (I swear).

Always remember that you can still have fun and adventure even with a limited budget. Sometimes, good company, self-improvements, and simple joys are enough to make a great experience and create a deeper impact on ourselves —we just fail to notice it.













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Katrina Golamco
Candy Correspondent

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Winning Heart

The journey of how I won people’s hearts by having a winning heart

Whatever happens tonight, I am a winner. That was the last line I delivered in front of the roaring crowd. My knees were trembling and my smile was shaking. I wanted to radiate confidence but I knew inside me were whirling storms of uncertainty. I wasn’t sure how to carry on for the rest of the night, it was only the first hour and my soul was already exhausted. I stood in front of an unfamiliar sea of people, I felt uncomfortable as they fixed their glances on me. The stage was bright and flashy as my co-contestants glazed the platform with outstanding physique and beauty. I couldn’t look straight at them because every time I did, a bucketful of insecurity was being poured on me. The whole pageant took about a few hours but it felt like eternity to me. I repeatedly asked myself questions every single time I stood on that platform. My vision was impaired by the blinding spotlights and all I could hear were the deafening roar of the audience combined with the booming music of the event. My head was filled with questions like “why are you here?”, “Will you be okay?” What will others think of you?” “What if you fail?”. Every step was heavier as I continued to overthink.

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For a moment on stage, I felt like I was floating. I was staring blankly at the end of the gymnasium. I was awakened by the loud cheer from the front row, I fixed my glance and saw large letters A-B-Y. it was like a snap to reality, I realized that’s my name. This time I could hear the synchronized cheers of people screaming my name. I smiled, walked away from the spotlight as I whispered to myself “let’s do this”. As the curtains opened, I walked towards the stage I felt lighter and different from the person a while ago. Walking was much easier and my knees weren’t trembling any longer. I stood at the edge of the stage, wandered my glance, and smiled genuinely. Flashing those pearly whites took barrels of longtime stored courage from within me. I marveled at how I could see the rainbow in the lights, the spotlights weren’t blinding anymore.


My feet started stomping to the music every time I pose and my hips would flawlessly sway to the music. The roar of the audience was overwhelming no more, it was like whispers lost in the beat of the music. I knew as I stood there, all I needed to do was smile and be myself. My name was called accompanied by the thunderous applause and booming cheers of the crowd. I stood there alongside with other contestants. I was holding a bouquet and a trophy. I could feel the heavy crown on top of my head. However, the trophy beside me was much bigger, the lady beside me wore an even flashier crown, it was the crown of the titleholder. That night I landed the first runner-up spot. My head was filled with “what ifs”. What if I did just a little better, what if I exerted more effort and so on.


As I stepped down on stage, several people rushed to me. They were jumping, screaming and clapping. It was so chaotic that it took me a millennium to recognize them, it was my family. They were hugging me from all directions. When I saw their smiles I knew I did great. I realized that was what I meant when I said “whatever happens tonight I am a winner”. Their presence, genuine smiles, and warm hugs meant more than the trophy and sash that night. For them, I was a star who shined through the darkness of the night. Before leaving the venue, a hand tapped me from behind “Congrats,” she whispered I turned to see her, and to my surprise she was a schoolmate who used to tease me because of my chubby physique.

I smiled as I expressed my gratitude towards her. As I walked away, I realized that I accomplished something legendary that night. I was able to showcase that pageants are not only for thin-looking, tall people. I managed to snatch everyone’s attention with this average height and chubby body. That night started with so much uncertainty and insecurity. As I stared at my reflection, I looked exhausted but I was wearing a different smile. A smile of victory and bravery. A smile that defeated the stereotypes and stigma about people like me. That night ended with a realization that maybe winning isn’t always about winning the crown, it’s about winning people’s hearts and having a winning heart.


Nicole Caluag A day ago

5 Mystery-Thriller Novels to Read

If you’re stuck at home and out of Netflix shows to binge-watch, then you might want to try and read these mystery-thriller books to match your homemade Dalgona Coffee.

1. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

The debut novel, and Goodreads Choice Awards Best Mystery & Thriller of 2019, follows Alicia Berenson, a well-known painter married to an esteemed fashion photographer. Life seemed perfect for Alicia, until one evening when she shot her husband five times, and… never spoke again.

2. Lock Every Door by Riley Sager

From the author of Final Girls comes this page turning novel about an infamous building in Manhattan called the Bartholomew. After stumbling upon an ad to become an apartment sitter, Jules Larsen has set out to look after apartment 12A under strict and somewhat odd conditions. Not long after stepping foot in the building, Jules has been met with unfriendly tenants, eerie noises in the apartment unit, and an abrupt departure of a fellow sitter named Ingrid.


3. The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

If you loved Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho or David Lynch’s Twin Peaks, then this book is for you. After the disappearance of her Aunt Vivian while working as a night-shift clerk at the Sun Down Motel in 1982, Carly has set off to Fell NY, to work the same job at the same place as her Aunt had 35 years ago – with hopes of uncovering the truth lurking behind the Motel walls.

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4. Verity by Colleen Hoover

While known for Young-Adult Novels such as Slammed and Maybe Someday, Colleen Hoover offers readers a romantic thriller about Lowen Ashleigh, a struggling author who was given the opportunity to finish the three remaining novels of a successful series after its original author, Verity Crawford, suffered an accident and has become immobile. After receiving an invite at the Crawford manor to sort through Verity’s notes, Lowen discovers an unpublished autobiography revealing the truth about Verity. With the eerie atmosphere of having Verity confined in her own home, and who is seemingly aware of her surroundings, Lowen is certain Verity is not what she appears to be.


5. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

A mind-bending science fiction thriller from the best-selling author of Wayward Pines – Dark Matter is packed with the concept of the Multiverse and the philosophy of existentialism. The novel follows an ordinary Physics professor, Jason Dessen, who was looking forward to dinner with his family while walking the streets of Chicago. The next thing he knew, he was being held at gunpoint – by a man wearing a mask – and injected with an unknown drug and blacks out. When he regains consciousness, he learns that the world he woke up to was different from the world he knew.

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