Tag Archive: fun and hobbies

Taking Online Courses While Working from Home

Okay. I should add something to that title — even if you are not working from home.

If you are interested to brush up your skills or learn new things, consider taking online courses or MOOC (Massive Open Online Course). And in the process, earn a course certificate, too.

There are several MOOCs you can access online such as Edx, Future Learn and Coursera. I have tried an Edx course a couple of years back but I was unable to finish it. I then considered Future Learn and Coursera. I decided to proceed with Coursera because they have specific courses which interested me. And because I truly enjoyed my 1st course with them, I have gone on to finish two more! Here are the Coursera courses with which I have earned course certificates as of this writing:

  1. Understanding Memory: Explaining the Psychology of Memory through Movies.  I took this course to brush up a bit on my Psychology major (I finished BS Psychology in the late ’90s) and because I love movies! The course, created by Wesleyan University, was great! I enjoyed it and helped gave me the confidence that I could indeed finish an online course 🙂 In fact, I finished the course within a month! I started this on May 28, 2016 and finished it by June 10.
  2. Leadership in 21st Century Organizations. Feeling a bit more confident after finishing my 1st course, I then proceeded to take another course. This time, I chose this leadership course to learn leadership principles and to keep up with current leadership trends and practices. I also chose this course as I was thrust into a leadership role in a non-profit organization and I knew I had to level up! The course, created by Copenhagen Business School, did not disappoint. It was very refreshing as the course included role play scenes of organizational challenges and how to deal with them. I have to admit, though, that this course took more effort to finish than the first one! It was enlightening but I felt it really asked a lot from me as a student. I started the course on June 17 but got to finish it by December 16, the actual deadline in completing it! Whew! Thank God, I still managed to finish it 🙂
  3. Introduction to Search Engine Optimization. I’ve always thought of taking a course on SEO to further enhance my online skills and decided this is the course to take and finish this year! I wish I could say that this course, created by University of California, Davis, was easy but I found it rather challenging. Perhaps it’s my age (?) struggling to learn new concepts including technical things about SEO. Thankfully, I managed to finish the course just a couple of days ago, on June 6 (I started it in April). And this is just the first of the 6-course Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Specialization. And so, may God help me indeed, to stick to finishing all courses by October!

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Now, should you consider studying with Coursera to further enhance your learning and skills, here are some things to consider:

Learning Method. There will be video teachings, reading and forum discussion. There are also assignments!

Course Deadlines. Upon your enrollment or purchase date of the course, you will be given a deadline to finish the course or earn your certificate. Based on the courses I took so far, 6 months was the time frame given to finish the course.

Payment and Financial Aid. Courses are FREE! But if you would like to earn a certificate, there are fees for the course. You can also avail of their financial aid to cover your course fees. Paying for a course or availing of their financial aid can prove to be an extra incentive or push in finishing the course 🙂

Perhaps, it’s also time for you to consider taking an online course! It’s time to brush up on your skills or do something to challenge yourself mentally. You can also take a course on something which you just enjoy learning about but never had the time or budget to do so before. You can always try a free course first to get a feel for it and then consider enrolling if you would like to have a course certificate.

May we never stop learning in this journey called life 🙂

My Kind of Sunset

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Even as a child, I have always loved  watching sunsets by the port area or by the beach in Bohol (Philippines) where I was born. And through the years, it has become a habit of mine to take sunset shots in the different places I have lived in or traveled.

This sunset photo featured above was one I took in December 2015 in Surigao City at its laid-back Mabua Pebble Beach. My husband and I together with some friends visited Surigao and explored this beach.

The photo is among the many I have taken with my Samsung phone camera and kept among my photo file folders. And I thought it deserves to be shared and perhaps serve as a reminder to us all how beautiful nature can be — the sunset, the sky, the sea. And that a lot of things in life are really, still free.

Note: This is my entry to Skywatch Friday. Check the entries there and be inspired.

Celebrating Our 7th Wedding Anniversary in NZ

It was not really planned. And yet my husband and I ended up celebrating our 7th wedding anniversary in the land where they say there are more sheep than people: New Zealand 🙂

We checked out the following places and more during that one fine day in November (our 7th wedding anniversary also falls on the 7th day of November).

Pegasus Town. Together with my cousin Jaireh, his wife and kid, the hubby and I went to Pegasus Town in North Canterbury (we were coming from Christchurch). We had our lunch at the Pegasus Golf and Sports Club and took time to stroll around the area.

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Hanmer Springs. Next stop after Pegasus was Hanmer Springs. With the temperature at 5 degrees (Centigrade), one doesn’t really think of swimming. But as we were in a new place, Jaireh managed to convince us that we should go for a dip at Hanmer Springs, specifically into its thermal pools. Hanmer is also located in the Canterbury region. Yes, it was really cold as we put on our swimwear and walked to one of its pools (the pools have different temperatures, think hot to hottest) but as soon as we got into it, it was really relaxing 🙂 Below is one of the pools we chose to swim in:

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Experiencing Nature. New Zealand is such a scenic country and it is easy to find so many postcard-perfect spots or should I say, instagram-worthy ones. And so before we headed back to Christchurch, we stopped several times to take photos 🙂 And I was so thankful that I finally got to see cherry blossoms 🙂  We also had to take photos with the sheep and deer which you could see just dotting the green landscape as we drove by.

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Kiwi and Chinese food. Of course, the day won’t be complete without food 🙂  As mentioned, we ate lunch at Pegasus Town. We also had a light snack at Hanmer Springs. We capped the day with a dinner at a Chinese eating place: Dragon Restaurant. (You can also check out some of the Kiwi/New Zealand food we enjoyed in NZ here.)

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What a beautiful day we had! We are truly thankful to God, to Jaireh and to his “fam bam” and to our friends and family who have helped make the trip to NZ a beautiful reality 🙂  Thank God from whom all blessings flow 🙂

Note: Daryl and I were a part of a group of pastors and leaders from our church who were invited for a leaders’ training in Hamilton, New Zealand. We stayed on for a few more days after the training to see friends and family in NZ.