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My Journey to Reacquiring my Filipino Citizenship

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There is no place like home as they said, and most of the time it is absolutely correct. Depending on the childhood you have in your life, most people would want to settle back in their hometown no matter how far their achievements are. As for me, I could not say that now, it may take years or so depending on how the economy change, but I consideration of being a snowbird. This means I want to stay longer in one place without thinking about overstaying at all. 

At first, I never intend to reacquire my former citizenship, not because I don’t like the Philippines, in fact, I love to be there 90% of my life. I am content with what I already have, I love the USA too. Both countries I am part and have histories, and making more memorable days to cherish life and family. I have the opportunity to apply without any hassle at all. Aside from that, my siblings and I have a business corporation that I wanted to stay longer than 1 year without thinking about the possibilities of overstaying, so why not re-acquire that citizenship.

Last 2021, my sister and I went back to the Philippines, and yes we did experience the whole Covid19 protocols in order to get to our final destination, Philippines. I was totally stressed-out just to gather all the necessary paper works and to be knowledgeable enough to know most of the changes, during that time. One thing that I was worried about is that I am no longer a Filipino Citizen, what could possibly get wrong? In my part, I have all these questions and the only thing I could satisfy myself is to research further.

Part of that sudden visit is our father’s passing, heartbroken but we need to accept things and move on, sooner or later when it’s our time to depart this earth it will happen. The only thing we need to do is to make sure that their or our legacy will continue and so that’s where I finally decided to reacquire my Filipino Citizenship. 

The office of the Philippine Consulate here in New York State is located at New York City. From my residence to get there, it would take us 6 hours, plus the traffic that you will experience once you are in New York City.  And that’s something I am avoiding, since my application isn’t really in a rush I decided to go seek an outreach program during Summer time. And they always perform this program during Spring-Summer time. And that’s where I found the nearest place they will have it in Rochester New York.  Oh, not to mention here in that place is where I also pledge my oath-taking to become a US Citizen. 

Getting the information I needed to do isn’t that stressful and complicated at all. I spoke to a few friends who have already gone through this path and it seems to me that the process is way too easy and quick. I went directly to the website of the Philippine Consulate and gather all the requirements and forms needed. At first, the place of the event hasn’t been started yet, so somewhere in Rochester NY is the area. Until, the first week of May 2022, they finally indicated the venue of the Outreach Program and it was at the Recreational Center, Rochester NY. 

We arrived at the location 40 minutes before the time and so my family and I waited for a little while. And since I have requested for an appointment 7 days before the date, the minute I step foot in that area, I was placed to the next person in line. It was pretty quick. I thought at first I have to go through all these dealings, but my impression was wrong. I have to pause here… 

Rewinding, before I was outside the Recreational Center of Rochester NY. I make sure that I sent an email to the newyorkpcg.consularoutreach@dfa.gov.ph at least seven (7) days prior to the scheduled Consular Outreach. The schedule of the Outreach was May 21, 2022, and I sent them an email on May 13th, 2022, Friday. I got a response Monday afternoon, May 16th, stating my 3Pm appointment. Everything stated in the email of what needs to bring and the instruction as well. So make sure you read it carefully and follow what the email says. As per observation, while I was at the place processing my requirement, there were at least 2 people denied to continue their dual application because they didn’t bring the necessary requirements stated on the website. They will not be going to proceed and they stopped them there. I hope they’re from that area; it is a waste of time to travel that far, (like me) and not be able to do it. 

Anyways, I have brought with me the original copies and 2 photocopies of the requirements too. As well as 2 copies of the Dual Citizenship and 4 2x2 white background photo.

 

Following are the basic requirements for principal applicants:

1.    Duly Accomplished Dual Citizenship Application Forms

2.    US Naturalization Certificate (If this is not available, the applicant must obtain a certification from the US Citizenship and Immigrant Services (USCIS) indicating that the applicant has obtained US Citizenship, including date of naturalization and Certificate number)

3.    Philippine Statistics Authority or National Statistics Office (PSA) Birth Certificate 

4.    Latest Philippine Passport (if available)

5.    PSA Marriage Certificate or Report of Marriage for married women.  

6.    Death Certificate required if a widow

7.    Divorce Decree or PSA Marriage Certificate with Annotation on Divorce (required for an applicant who has previous marriages or divorced)

8.    Valid US Passport

9.    Applicant’s Photos (bring four (4) colored 2″x 2″ photos, with plain white background. Applicant must not be wearing eyeglasses)

 

 For dependent children:

1.    PSA Birth Certificate / US Birth Certificate

2. Latest Philippine Passport (if available)

3. US Naturalization Certificate 

4. US Passport

5.    Child’s Photos (3 photos)

 

Make sure to have them with you during your appointment and everything will be smooth, I did. After the payment of $60.00, I reviewed the document and signed it. By the way, don’t get a pre-paid envelope unless you intend to renew or get your passport. I have no clue so I purchased one and now I don’t know what to do with this pre-paid envelope. I can’t return it to the post office. 

Moreover, after 20 minutes of waiting, they all gathered the rest of the dual citizenship applicants in the area we started with our oath-taking. The official had given us our Certificates and the Identification Paper. There were more than 15 people in that batch, we pledge the oath and sang the Philippine National Anthem. It feels like I am back to my first country again. Like having a flashback of my childhood memories during my youth days while we sang our National Anthem during our Flag Ceremony.

Anyways, the best part of everything after reacquiring my citizenship is that I have all the privileges of both countries now. I can travel without having any problems in both countries, and so is my family. I can stay as much as I can in both countries, without the worry of overstaying, and most part is I get to spend enough time to both countries. 

Oh, after you reacquire your Filipino Citizenship, you are not required to get a Philippine passport, which is only optional. You have your certificate to show them that you are dual. They don’t have any more copies of the certificates, so it is our responsibility that we have to take good care of this document. However, the Consul mentioned that you can make copies of the document and make sure it is being notarized; anyone who notarized would be able to do it. Just to make sure you’ll show them the original copy and that the notarized photocopy is acceptable. 

From the time I was inside the Center up to the last thing I spent inside it only took me less than an hour for the whole process. I am very happy that I have this done. This journey of reacquiring my Filipino Citizenship is over.

Now, I will continue to create more memories with my family in other things.

 

Where to buy and own an American Flag

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The Independence Day is fast approaching, and this year’s celebration would totally be different from the normal and usual ways we celebrate it. We know for sure that a mass gathering is prohibited in most states due to the Pandemic that we are still experiencing. And we all know that it will take some time for this virus to even go away and would not harm many lives in the future. In order to prohibit this virus from spreading we tend to stay at home, cancel, and postponed big gatherings and we need to make sure there is a social distancing in a possible way.

One of the country’s memorable Holidays is Independence Day for there is a Huge History of this celebration. And of course, by that, one of the traditions of celebrating Independence Day is putting up our flags on our premises. We would always want to make sure to put up our American Flag to symbolize our support and honor that this day has come.

I don’t like to acquire a cheap material if I purchased a Flag. So I tend to look for the quality that would last for a longer period of time. So, searching online is quite overwhelming, since most of the stores are currently not opening. Browsing online is also tricky because you can’t really see the Flag itself so you have to rely on the pictures as well as the material indicated. And if you don’t have a reliable website it is another thing to think, and trusting them about the quality of the flag that you are about to purchase is good.

Since I still have enough time to buy one, I found a nice website that sells American Flags in any shape and variety.
You can choose if you would like a Durable Nylon, Strong Poly 2, or Classic Cotton. It also shows reviews from previous buyers and stated how happy they are with the quality of the Flag. And if you are in a budget, they are affordable as well.

American Flags show our love for our country and by making sure we got a good deal; Usflags.com is where you should checkout.

Last Week of School Year 2019-2020

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Today marks the last week for the school year 2019-2020. It’s a very odd way to end the school year for the students, faculty, staff, and administrations in each States, from the normal and usual ways they ended the year. There are so many activities that were canceled, may be postponed (not really sure of what’s going on) due to the CoVid-19 Pandemic and this will also mark in the history of the world as well as recorded in the book of the generation. This year 2020 has not a very good year for the whole world, there are so many things happened and still happening. After the Pandemic, there is a movement or a protest rally for rights in other states or I say most states. I have not really seen one here in my area though. I figured, I luckily live in a place that doesn’t have so many protesters and no violence happening, and we wanted it that way. We can always find justice in a peaceful way for those victims, without creating more trouble.

But I am not here to discuss that, I am here to discuss my stances about the unusual closing of the School Year 2020.

I bet it is totally different from some students to not see their teachers, classmates to end the year without the normal routine they’ve been doing. I have received and read my 4th Grader’s last week assignment as well as received my UPK packets for the whole week.

Based from my 4th Grader and Pre-K students, I have asked them how they feel about this year’s class ending.
From a 4th Grader: nothing really, and he likes the remote learning too.
From a UPK: no comment, and would like to be homeschooled.

As for cafeteria staff, I would miss those students who eat breakfast that I won’t be able to see for the next School Year. Sad to not tell these individual “Congratulations” and sore high wishes, because we won’t be back to this year again.
And for the packed meals, we will continue to provide packed meals for the students until June 26. However, the paycheck will have a bit changes after the 12th of June (this month).

I am not sure if we will continue to prepare these meals, depends on what our Governor Cuomo decides and order. But if that happens, I signed up for working every Tuesday only. I love the crew; we do work fast and efficiently.

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