25 February 2009


The package. Here being inspected by Ms. Hally Beri. Tightly wrapped brown paper marked with a Sharpie.
It smells heavenly!

Packets of Caramel Chai Latte. (For Beng. Daw. Didn't see her name on it. Hehehe.)

Pack of eight Tindra candles from Ikea.  Woohoo!!  (Kaya pala amoy ice cream nung binuksan.)

Spices!! Whee! Now I can make my own masala chai tea! :D
Thank you Mitzie and Harrison!!
I hope you like the package I sent you!

19 February 2009

Beach House

Today, Nards and I went to UP for lunch.  We were both jonesing for barbecue so we went to Beach House.

Countless lunches with Mitzie on these tables. When she was still a carnivore.

We ordered our usual: two sticks of barbecue, an order of eggplant, tomatoes, salted egg and bagoong, and a serving of rice.

It looked so good, so we got this as well.


16 February 2009

Guilty Pleasure of the Month

The first time I learned of Bulla Ice Cream Stick was at the Energy Lounge, but the first time I tried it was at the Ateneo School Fair.  It was love at first bite!  I immediately bought a box of eight (strawberry, honeycomb and caramel flavors) at the one grocery store that I knew carried it. 

It looks like an ordinary Pinipig Crunch, but this one is just so creamy and yummy! It also has a low-fat/yogurt version that comes in chocolate, strawberry, raspberry and blueberry. 

This week, I'm going to try the box with orange, mint and vanilla flavors.  Mmmm.

14 February 2009

Pinched Nerves

Nards has been suffering from back pains for the past week. It was still tolerable last Saturday, but it was bad enough that he stayed at home even though he wanted to watch Isha. Sunday, we had lunch for the family and he was dragging his feet as he made several trips to the buffet table. Monday was another tolerable day, as we only stayed home to edit photos and prepare for the following day's shoot. I started my mantra of: "let me take you to the doctor" but he refused to go.

Tuesday was Fresh Take day and took Advil but it didn't work. Did my mantra but he still refused. Wednesday was the most painful day and he couldn't move anymore. If he did, he sported a crooked posture. I went to Mercury and bought him stronger pain killers. Doubled my mantra but he was still unrelenting. Thursday, he took pain killers, was somewhat relieved and worked on the photobooth even though I begged him to stay put. The pain came back with a vengeance accompanied by fever. Gave him my mantra with a side order of tears, liberally sprinkled with admonishments. He finally agreed.

Friday, I was calling hospitals in our area to check if they have a doctor specializing on arthritis who had clinic hours within the day. Majority of them were available for consultations between Monday and Wednesday only. Nards was able to recall the name of his previous doctor, and I searched them on the UST Hospital website. (Great, website by the way, I can even make appointments online. I didn't take my chance though, I called the staff to secure a time slot.)

The doctor and her student thought Nards had acute scoliosis. That's how painful it was, he really couldn't stand or walk straight to save his life. After a full examination, we were told that it's not arthritis at all. His nerves branching from the spine got pinched and damaged, resulting in debilitating back pains. This explains why the back pains were more frequent, because of the photobooth lifting. He was prescribed steroids and nerve pain killers; and was forbidden to bend or lift anything more than 10% of his body weight. Ever. We were asked to come back for an MRI and an x-ray if the pains persist after two weeks of medication.

I'm happy and relieved to say that after two doses of steroids and two tablets of Lyrica, Nards' back has improved. He's still a little skewed, but the pain has lessened considerably. I pray that we won't need to return to the doctor at all.

I'm just so thankful he finally agreed to go to the doctor, otherwise, he'd still be lifting heavy stuff and assuming that he's having arthritis attacks and self-medicating.

He has no idea how my pinched MY nerves are this entire week.

11 February 2009

Yesterday's Fresh Take

Yesterday, Nards and I woke up at 5AM to get ready for Fresh Take at Krus Na Ligas National High School. Call time was at 6AM, and I was anxious to start early because we were to take grad photos of about 200 fourth year students.  (For this leg alone.)

When we got to the school, we were a flurry of activities: setting up the lights, putting up the backdrops, orienting the students, taking test shots and agreeing on the poses to be taken.  There was even a particular question which sent Leslie to scamper off to the principal to ask whether the tassel on the caps should be on the left or the right (the students' left).  Leslie took care of the student lists, PJ and Mike were wardrobe, Chely, May and Tiff were make up, Daddy G, Gab, Karen, Nards and I took the photos.

I had a harder time getting the photos I wanted because the students were mostly self-conscious.  They were uncomfortable in front of the camera and was sensitive and distracted by the comments and jibes from their classmates who were watching.  (Nards and I paused from taking photos to put up a curtain to block out hecklers and uzis.)    They also had stiff smiles fixed on their faces, so Nards and I worked hard to make them relaxed and at ease.  I wanted them to have good photos to remember their high school graduation.

I was more tired here than in our other shoots.  But I didn't mind saying the same thing over and over, using the same jokes over and over to make them laugh, fixing their hair, and fussing over every little detail.  When I saw the outtakes, it was worth it.

They are worth it.

08 February 2009

All Things Audrey

I am a huge fan of Audrey Hepburn.

This week, Rockwell is holding an Audrey Hepburn film festival.  I have never had the pleasure of watching her on the big screen, and I'm hoping Nards and I can find time to go there and catch a film or two. 

The first film I saw of hers was Wait Until Dark.  It was a friday night way back in second grade.  My brother and sister were asleep, and my parents let me sit between them on the sofa and watch the film with them.  I was an instant fan.  I was terrified of Alan Arkin, and at the same time, I fervently wished I was the little girl who played Audrey Hepburn's neighbor. 

The second film I saw was A Roman Holiday and I was already in high school then.  I caught the opening credits while channel surfing.  I crushed on Gregory Peck and became even more enamored with Audrey Hepburn.  I also saw her on one of the Oscar's sporting a very chic dotted evening dress.

Since that time, I was able to collect and watch all her films except for the two early ones in 1951.  I did see Laughter in Paradise where she was a cigarette girl, which was released in the same year.  I LOVE all her films, but my favorites (and it took considerable time for me to decide on this) are Roman Holiday (for the obvious reason), Charade, Sabrina and Wait Until Dark (because it was the first).  I was okay when they remade Sabrina, but I was totally disagreeable when they remade Charade entitled The Truth About Charlie.  Mark Wahlberg was hot, but Thandie Newton did a very very very very poor rendition of Regina Lampert.   I watched the biography that Jennifer Love Hewitt co-produced and starred in as Audrey Hepburn.  She got the accent, but sadly that was all she got. 

When Audrey Hepburn passed away in 1992, I was in tears when I heard about it.  I admired her not only as an actress but as a human being.  She was very good at her job and she was even better as a UN Ambassador, which she did whole-heartedly and sincerely.  She was coquettish, witty, humorous, kind, generous and had a great love for children.  She was one of those few people who grew old gracefully.  (Think Elizabeth Taylor.  Ugh.)    She was literally beautiful inside and out.

My Mom sent me an email way back in college.  It contained Audrey Hepburn's beauty tips:
  1. For attractive lips speak words of kindness.
  2. For attractive eyes seek out the good in people.
  3. For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry.
  4. For beautiful hair let a child run his/her fingers through it once a day.
  5. For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone.
  6. People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed... never throw out anyone.
  7. Remember, if you ever need a helping hand you will find one at the end of each of your arms.
  8. As you grow older you will discover you have two hands, one for helping yourself, and one for helping others.

I truly hope there are more Audrey Hepburns out there.  The world certainly needs them.

05 February 2009

I Bet

...that this car is an Autobot.  I bet it transforms at night and prowls about campus.  (Assuming its human lives in campus.)   I bet it saw Nards snapping this photo as we drove past where it was parked.  (Eep!)

A Few Bulletins For Today

  • I'm writing two articles that I promised a friend for his website.  It's been long overdue and I'm determined to finish it this week.  I don't know about everyone else, but the most difficult thing for me to write is always the first sentence.   I'm relieved that once that's out of the way, I get a good chunk of the writing done.  
  • A lot of people are having their birthday this weekend, one of them is my Mom.  My sister and I were discussing whether we'd have a luncheon at home or have the family go somewhere nice (so that no one will have to cook -- everyone's just tired from this long week).  I'm still debating whether to give her a Himalayan blue seal point kitten someone is selling, because she's told me a few times that she misses Figaro and would like to have another cat in the house.  My sister is adamantly against it though.  I'm sure my Dad and brother would be taking her side as soon as they learn about this.  (Although we all know that they're all closet cat lovers.)
  • Nards and I are definitely getting a haircut today.  We've been putting it off all week (on account of a certain network game).
  • I am also definitely getting a massage tonight.  Sitting in front of a computer too long and not doing enough yoga is triggering my back pains.    I should at least do a few sun salutations in the morning, and a couple of poses in the evening before I go to bed.  I'll get the poses done before the masseuse gets here this evening.
  • I'm excited to mount the shelf and the wire rack that we got from Ikea so we can organize our work things.  It's perfect on the bare wall above our work table.
  • I have two new recipes to try this weekend, maybe in time for my Mom's birthday: peanut butter bars  and smores bars.  I was told that the bars are similar to Reese's.  I sincerly hope so.  I'm addicted to those peanut butter cups.  The smores are made from graham cracker crust, Fluff (good thing I still have a jar of this, which reminds me I need to order more), and slabs of chocolate.  I can tell that someone's not going to be happy about someone's diet getting sabotaged.
  • Valentine's is a good time for me to go shopping because all things red come out. Just last week, when we made a quick trip to the mall for groceries, I was able to buy red and white and red and black striped socks.  They'd be perfect for my black mary janes from Crocs.
  • I think I'm writing this blog entry with bullets because I'm still recovering from the 25 things from Facebook.

Re-Post: Isha feat. 80s THIS SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 8pm

If you love Madonna, Depeche Mode, Dream Academy, B-52s, The Police and all those big hair 80s icons, come and grab dinner at Mag:Net Katipunan THIS SATURDAY, February 7, at 8-9:30pm and hear my piano + vocal reworkings of some of their hits!

Mag:Net is a small, intimate venue so I'd appreciate it if you can RSVP so tables can be reserved for you! You may email me at or simply holler here!

Check out my previous post for Mag:Net's location map.

Thanks and see you this Saturday!


Re-posted from her blog.

Photo by Nards

03 February 2009


Republishing from Facebook.

Rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits or goals about yourself. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged, including the person who tagged you.

To do this, go to "notes" under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner) then click publish.

  1. I have not eaten eggs since I was nine years old. It was only recently that I had a total of 13 sunny side ups (spread over a couple of months) because I got sick and needed all the protein I can get. I still cannot abide eggs and the sunny sides ups were a stretch.
  2. Until the age of 25, I was a size 0, 98 lbs weakling. My Uncle used to tease me that if someone sneezed, I might disintegrate.
  3. When I was a child, I could not function at all without my doll, Lisa by my side.
  4. I started taking photos when I was ten with my Dad’s old 35mm point and shoot, but stopped at the age of twelve because I had to choose between buying film and having it developed, and buying books.
  5. I used to have a Turkish Angora cat named Figaro who died last 2006.
  6. I hate the mall. I always do my shopping online. Before that, my Mom and sister bought my clothes for me.
  7. In my 20s, I frequently wore to work the clothes that my Mom sewed and wore in her 20s.
  8. I own at least 15 eco bags, which Nards and I actively use.
  9. I have not watched TV in two years. Our TV set is solely used for gaming and the occasional DVD marathon.
  10. According to Nards, I have an addiction to computer games, particularly cooking games. (To which I vehemently disagree. I’m impartial to all video games. I like them all.)
  11. My video game addiction started at the advent of Game & Watch. I didn’t care too much for Barbie.
  12. I always carry a book with me wherever I go. Been doing it since I was seven years old .
  13. I love Math. I enjoyed all my Math classes.
  14. I have a very sharp memory. I can remember minute details from childhood.
  15. I knit, crochet and scrapbook.
  16. My first credit card purchase was a thick volume of piano and flute sheet music at the Book Wagon.
  17. I’m a stickler for measurements. If the recipe calls for 3 tablespoons of curry powder, I get my measuring spoons and scoop out that precise amount.
  18. I wish I could own a 1966 red Karmann Ghia and a 1963 blue Mustang convertible.
  19. I also wish I could own an 85mm 1.2 lens, which costs Php127,000.
  20. I like staying at home, reading or playing video games.
  21. I love watching old films, particularly black and white ones with Audrey Hepburn and Ingrid Bergman.
  22. My first crushes were Gregory Peck and John Lennon.
  23. I have a very foul temper. I don’t want to say anything when I’m emotional because I if I do, I always regret it afterwards. So I just walk away when I get angry.
  24. I always pray Hail Mary whenever I’m in an elevator.
  25. I’m not in the habit of looking at myself in the mirror. Not even on my wedding day.

01 February 2009

My Fair February

Happy New Month!  And I greet this month with a few photos from our photobooth gig yesterday at the Ateneo HS Fair.


February is always fair month, and it's one of the most exciting times in school.  Back in high school, the school fair was the one weekend where we can wear civilian clothing (as long as it is Marian) and to have our friends over from other schools (mostly sisters who studied in other schools, and guys we had soirees with during the academic year).  I remember the fair staples were the dedication booth, the jail booth, the various food booths, the caterpillar/octopus rides, the ferris wheel, and the variety/talent show organized by the teachers and students.   The most memorable one for us was when The Dawn performed during my sophomore year.  (I reminded Francis about this the last time I saw him in NU.  He still remembers a handful of my classmates who helped organize that particular show.)

It's good to know that some things never change and that most of the fair staples I listed down here were present at the Ateneo fair.  I particularly liked the fair food that never changes: hotdogs, fries, cotton candy, barbecue, and ice cream (YEY for this!  Had four Bulla bars in the course of the two-day fair.  Currently, my favorite cold treat.)    

In college, the fair took on a more adult flavor.  There were still the staples, but there's also a lot of merchandise sold by the different orgs (my favorite was the japanese booth that had an overwhelming collection of manga and anime), a few booths selling flavored lambanog and simple cocktails (including a couple of hard liquor), and the wall assembled by UPM (Mitzie and I still had memories of this gutsy girl in denim short shorts and cork wedges giving every guy and girl a run for their money when she scaled the wall with amazing speed and agility).  The concerts were more hard core: great line up of bands, Mitzie and I down on the grass buzzed from a few shots of lambanog (with Mitzie wheezing and pumping her inhaler from her allergies with anything that had alcohol) and enjoying the performances, and the more sophisticated light and sound set up.

I wonder what's in store for the UP Fair this year?   Nards and I will definitely try to visit at least once.


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