by Jacky Lynne A. Oiga
Before 10-year-old Andrea Brillantes was catapulted to stardom by her stellar performance in the ABS-CBN hit soap Annaliza, the charming child actress was simply Angel to her family, especially to her beloved grandparents Daddy Jun and Mommy Susan.
The youngest of four siblings, with an angelic face, endearing personality, and quiet demeanor, it’s not surprising that her family would call her such. But according to Andrea, it was her grandparents who gave her the sweet nickname.
“Since I was one-year-old until three, I lived with my Daddy Jun and Mommy Susan,” Andrea shares. Andrea’s family and her grandparents lived in the same compound. Both her parents were working so her grandparents volunteered to look after her instead of entrusting her to a yaya.
She was still very young then but Andrea had a lot of fond memories with her grandparents. “Daddy Jun taught me how to ride a bike. I was great with the training wheels, but when he tried to teach me to ride the real, two-wheel type, I fell. I was so scared I cried. But Daddy Jun was there to pick me up,” she recalls.
Meanwhile, her Mommy Susan would always bring her to their neighborhood store to buy her chocolates and crinkles. “I was really spoiled by my grandparents. That’s why I’m not used to eating vegetables and healthy snacks. Mommy Susan always gives me chocolates, especially when she asks me to fix the dictionary setting of her Nokia phone,” she says smiling.
Andrea was so close to her grandparents she’d often cry when her Mommy Belle picks her up after work. “I love my mom and my dad but I’d always feel sad when they take me home to our place. Before I sleep, I’d imagine making a robot that looks exactly like me so I can creep out of our house and go back to Mommy Susan without my parents knowing,” she shares.
Now that she’s busy juggling school, tapings and TV appointments, Andrea says she doesn’t get to spend too much time with her grandparents anymore. Even so, Daddy Jun and Mommy Susan, never fail to remind her how proud they are of their little Angel.
“They watch Annaliza every day. Mommy Susan even jokes she’ll confront the villains that torment me on TV. I’m happy that they like what I do and make them smile whenever they see me onscreen,” Andrea says.
As one of the fastest-rising child stars today, Andrea has been getting product advertisement offers after another. In fact, she was recently tapped to endorse Polaroid’s new kid-friendly gadget, Polaroid Kids Tablet.
“It’s a match made in heaven,” says Andrea about her new favorite gadget. A self-professed tech junkie, she uses her rose-colored, seven-inch Polaroid Kids Tablet at home and in-between shoots. She uses it to listen to her favorite songs, read her favorite e-book “The Witch with No Name”, stream videos on YouTube and play any of the 16 pre-loaded kid-safe games in the Game Arcade, of which “My Play Home” is her favorite.
Also, as a Twitter and Instagram user, Andrea finds the 2-megapixel camera and WiFi to be extremely handy for instant photo sharing on social networking sites. Kids Cam lets her brilliantly capture spontaneous images, and then add in unique photo effects in a snap.
The next time Andrea visits Mommy Susan and Daddy Jun, she says she’ll teach them how to use her Polaroid tablet. “My grandparents don’t know how to use the internet,” she shares. “But the tablet is kid-friendly so I’m sure its Lolo-and-Lola-friendly too.”
When asked why she’d recommend the tablet to kids her age, the smart girl answers, “It’s great for kids because it’s a cute gadget that’s very functional. But I would recommend it more to the parents because it has a parental control feature so it’s safe for kids. Parents can monitor what their kids do online and offline, mayroon po siyang safe mode kaya hindi na po kailangan mag-alala ni Mommy and Daddy.”
As a CES Innovations 2013 Design and Engineering Awards recipient, Kids Tablet takes childproofing to the next level. Aside from pre-filtering all applications to suit children’s unique needs, it also features built-in parental controls that automatically lock the device whenever prohibited sites or downloads are attempted. A display lock is located at the base, which disables buttons for uninterrupted viewing. Lastly, shockproof side-panel rubber bumpers guard the tablet against any accidental falls or bumps.