Work-from-home parents: Best of both worlds


WITH our “new normal”, more and more parents are considering working from home as an alternative way to earn income, spend quality time with their families, and keep themselves and their loved ones safe from Covid-19.

Taking that big leap from a traditional work set-up to a work-from-home environment might be an unchartered territory, so to ease your fears, let’s learn from these parents on how to take this route.


NAME: Katherine C. Ansaldo

FORMER WORK: Finance officer/food caterer

WORK-FROM-HOME JOB: Teaches English as a Second Language (ESL) to foreign students via an online class since 2016

WFH SKED: As I tutor students of all ages from four to 56 years old, I hold regular class appointments starting as early as 9 a.m. and ending around 10 p.m.

TYPICAL DAY: Unlike the typical daily grind that would require one to wake up and get ready for work by 7 a.m., our routine is a lot more flexible, a lot more balanced.

QUALIFICATIONS: Employers look to experience as a worthy foundation for employment as an ESL tutor, especially when the experience is in child-rearing. Training certificates and credentials are a plus but having just the right amount of confidence when facing the camera and getting into character is always key to online teaching.

EQUIPMENT: Lenovo Core i3-powered desktop with 20 Mbps Globe-at-Home Fiber subscription

WFH PERKS: No more commute. No more traffic. No more rush hours.


NAME: Paul B. Ansaldo

FORMER WORK: I used to have a regular 9 to 5 job, working in the construction industry, juggling roles in sales and marketing for almost half of my life.

WORK-FROM-HOME JOB: I write copy and content for start-up companies and individuals as a project-based freelancer.

WFH SKED: When I began working as a content writer, my hours needed to coincide with the client’s time zone. It took some time to get adjusted to graveyard shifts but I was also blessed to have had countless opportunities to work with companies and individuals who understand the value of creativity and respect the time zone that I am in.

TYPICAL DAY: We manage our working hours seamlessly interweaved with the comings and goings of a regular day at home. Since our work requires us to sit for hours and may often lead to a sedentary lifestyle, we make it a point to squeeze in light cardio exercises.

QUALIFICATIONS: One might find it easy-peasy to write compelling copy and content in today’s tech-driven world of e-commerce and getting it into Google’s first page. It’s not. You need to have a steady stream of creativity and imagination, lose the verbose, and mind the fluff.

EQUIPMENT: I sport a “detonator” PC. A bareboned desktop running a P4 3.2 GHz processor,

compensated by 6 GB worth of RAM.

WFH PERKS: The opportunity to meet people globally, fostering relationships beyond borders, and learning new skill sets every day.


NAME: Cheryl P. Dacer

FORMER WORK: I worked for three years in Tokyo as an operator of reefer ships that carried bananas from the Philippines to be shipped to various parts of the world.

WORK-FROM-HOME JOB: I am a cake artist, baker, and owner of Cake Lab. I bake cakes and different kinds of pastries. I create dessert tables and sell regular cakes in trays from home. My specialty is making fondant cakes and creating edible character figurines as toppers for my work.

WFH SKED: My working hours can be flexible when we’re not busy, around 8-10 hours. I prefer to work later in the day because it’s not too hot to bake and I like to decorate at night because it’s quiet. But, during the holidays, it can get crazy. I sometimes must stay up for 24-48 hours to finish my work.

TYPICAL DAY: A typical day would be answering queries on my Facebook page while having a cup of coffee in the morning. I write down the details of the cakes that I need to decorate during the day, prepare all the ingredients needed and decorate for the rest of the day. When I’m tired from a previous night’s work, I can take naps during the afternoons. And, when the cakes are easy and I finish early, I spend time watching movies with my son and my assistant.

QUALIFICATIONS: I think it is important to have some inclination to art as my work requires a lot of creativity. It is also important to have patience as the details can be quite tedious. Most importantly, one must be incredibly hardworking to work long hours and rarely getting a chance to sit.

EQUIPMENT: I use a Kitchen Aid, an oven, a chiller for the cakes, an air-conditioned kitchen and baking pans and tools. Internet is also a must since I do most of my marketing online.

WFH PERKS: My work hours are flexible. No one tells me what time I have to start working and when I should stop. My body dictates when it’s time to rest.


NAME: Julie Faith Palo-Lapaz

FORMER WORK: My first job was at a Korean academy teaching English to students for two years. I then worked for a BPO company as a communications trainer for another two years.

WORK-FROM-HOME JOB: Our company is an online business English school that caters to Japanese professionals. So, our students range from fresh university graduates to top management officials in corporations. My job description basically entails assisting our trainers (English instructors) while they are teaching the students

WFH SKED: Being in Trainer Support Services, I work 8 hours a day and 6 days a week. The hours differ from day to day which also makes it more flexible for my home schedule as well.

TYPICAL DAY: A typical day means lugging around my laptop and earphones as I’m doing my supervisory duties while attending to the kids. During meetings, I slip into the bedroom or basement and prep my background (which is required to be white) and I wear my office shirt (instead of a blazer during the summer season) as I start my meetings both via Zoom and Skype.

QUALIFICATIONS: To be a trainer at my company, you just need to have at least two years of college to qualify. Then maintain good KPI and feedback from the students in order to be shortlisted by the Human Capital Department.

EQUIPMENT: Good working laptop; primary and backup internet; backup power supply; noise-cancelling headset and microphone; ring light; and roll-up tarp system for white background

WFH PERKS: Safety, as I am just home and avoiding having to go out. It has given my family the sense of security and safety that I do not have to go out, especially during this pandemic.


NAME: Maria Lea Novero-Doblado

FORMER WORK: I was a payroll application programmer/analyst in an integrated forest and paper company for 22 years.

WORK-FROM-HOME JOB: I work in an online English training platform where our students are Chinese from all ages. I conduct a 25-minute class depending on the student’s chosen topic which I study or check ahead of time. The job entails me to give corrective feedback and make the lessons as fun and engaging.

WFH SKED: I start from 10:00 a.m to 9:30 p.m. with lunch, pm snack and dinner breaks for 1 hour each.

TYPICAL DAY: My day starts with me doing simple exercises and housework, then preparing for my classes by reviewing the student’s chosen lessons. I catch sleep after eating lunch and snacks and after my last class, I review the next day’s lessons. I end the day by browsing the internet, catching up on the news and playing brain games like Sudoku.

QUALIFICATIONS: You should have an excellent command in English language then passion and patience in teaching because some lessons could be tough depending on the student’s proficiency level. Also, have energy and enthusiasm in teaching because this helps the students enjoy and be attentive in classes.

EQUIPMENT: Laptop or desk computer with a working camera, headset, and a strong internet connection

WFH PERKS: Higher earning potential as there are lots of online jobs out there you can try which are convenient for you.

E-mail the author at mom.about.town.dvo@gmail.com. To view more photos, please visit http://momabouttowndavao.blogspot.com/.


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