For celebrity couple Paolo Contis and LJ Reyes, nothing is more precious than to spend quality time with their children in this time of pandemic.

In a virtual press conference with the two lovebirds, both said they are happy to witness the milestones of their one-year-old daughter Summer Ayanna.

“It’s a blessing in disguise kahit papaano. Alam niyo naman ang buhay celebrity, may times na hindi talaga makasingit ng bonding moments with your loved ones,” LJ said. “Ako, I’m very happy kasi nag-breastfeed pa din ako kay Summer so araw araw natututukan ko siya.”

Summer, just like sun, brightens up their day. Paolo added she is their happy pill amid boredom due to the lockdown.

“Alam niyo ‘yung masaya lang. Siya ‘yung inspirasyon namin sa bahay. And okay din ‘yung nababantayan namin siya 24/7,” Paolo said.

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Paolo Contis and LJ Reyes with Aki and Summer (Niceprint)

“At tsaka during this difficult time, nata-touch kami na marami ding na-i-inspire kay Summer. May mga nagme-message na natutuwa sila sa anak namin lalo na du’n sa mga videos na ina-upload namin,” LJ added.

As for LJ’s son, Aki, the actress makes sure he understands the lockdown situation. She encourages him to watch the news so he will be informed about the pandemic and how it affects their lives.

“At 10, talagang nag-a-adjust si Aki sa mga pangyayari kasi siyempre sanay siya na palagi lumalabas. But we made sure na well informed siya about what’s happening. We really want him to be informed,” she said. “But, of course, we don’t neglect to ask kung anong nararamdaman niya. Ang interaction niya with his age ngayon is through digital means.”

Aki will undergo home-school learning as the Department of Education suspended face-to-face method in the absence of COVID-19 vaccine.

Relationship goals

Pandemic has made the relationship of Paolo and LJ stronger than ever. They’ve discovered more things about each other having stayed under one roof round-the-clock for nearly three months.

“Na-discover niya (LJ) kung gaano ako katamad!” Paolo quipped.

LJ said, “Ang dami naming na-realize together. Actually, sanay na kami na magkasama araw-araw but this time, mas nabuksan ang communication sa aming dalawa.”

Paolo chimed in, “Wala ka naman choice kung hindi kausapin ako eh!” (laughs)

The couple hardly had disagreements—well, except for what shows to watch on Netflix.

“Isa talaga sa mga lessons na natutunan namin is yung gaano kahalaga ‘yung time niyo together. Dati kasi, although magkasama kami sa isang bahay, may mga times na hindi nakakapag-bonding kasi busy siya sa work, ako busy sa mga bata,” she said. “Ngayon, masaya na nakakaupo kami, nakakapagusap tungkol sa buhay buhay, nanunuod ng Netflix together.”

Apart from that, they also have life realizations during the health crisis.

For one, LJ said, there are things one can live without.

“Let this be a learning experience for everyone na hindi naman kailangan maluho. Mas okay na simple lang,” she said.

Back to work

Although Paolo enjoys staying at home with family, he is preparing to go back to work.

Sooner than later, he pointed out, he’ll need to return shooting shows so that he’d be able to provide more for his family.

“We’re almost back to normal. Nandu’n na’ko sa point na kailangan tanggapin na eto na ‘yon. Kailangan ng bumalik sa trabaho because we also owe it to the public,” the actor said.

He currently hosts an online talk show. Paolo also hopes to finish a film with Archie Alemania. Then there’s that plan to shoot “something” with Boy2 Quizon by end of June.

More, Paolo will launch his YouTube channel soon.

Of course, the actor said he will return to work so long as there are proper guidelines workers could follow.

He also ensures his safety. In fact, he has 10 face shields on standby.

“At the end of the day namin kasi, ang goal mo sa pagbabalik trabaho is makakain ang pamilya mo, hindi para magkasakit,” he said. “So sa pagbabalik ko, sisiguraduhin ko na well-protected ako. Tsaka kailangan talaga sundin yung guidelines na ini-impose kasi para sa lahat naman ‘yun. Kung kailangan may social distancing, walang masama na sumunod.”

Paolo and LJ revealed they both plan to venture into projects out of the limelight.

LJ wants to manage businesses, while Paolo aims to write and direct a show.

“Sa totoo lang kasi, kami (actors) yung mga seasonal workers. Hindi naman araw araw may shooting kami ng teleserye, o may pelikula so gusto din namin mag-venture sa ibang bagay kasi tulad nga ng laging sinasabi, ang showbiz hindi naman pang-habambuhay,” she said.

Paolo added: “Definitely gusto namin tumagal sa industriya na’to. Pero sana, maging nandito kami hindi dahil kailangan ko lang, kung hindi dahil gusto talaha namin.”

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