Apr 29, 2007

Photo Hunt 8: Rare


Before anything, my prayers go to TNChick for her speedy recovery.

Been a little busy but here's my photo hunt for the week. The theme's about something 'rare'. Here's mine. In this day and age of iPod mini, nano and shuffle, vinyl records and cassette tapes are rare finds. I'm sure the kids of today have not seen much of them unless their parents have a collection like me and my husband.

These vinyl records serve as wall decors in one of the restaurants in Manila. They're cute. If you remember the movie Pretty in Pink (you know, Molly Ringwald...), they decorated the walls and the ceiling of their record stores with vinyl records. Well me, growing up, I was already using cassette tapes to record my favorite songs from a portable cassette recorder, where else? :) Oh this paragraph is so full of 'records', lol.

And these tapes are mostly from the late 80s and early 90s. If today everything can be downloaded, during my time, we go to a record store and submit a list of our favorite songs and presto, they will record them. I forgot how much each song. Bad, bad, bad though.


I am participating at Amy's Scavenger Hunt. I've did this in one of our team buildings but let me see how it will go online. One thing's for sure, it will be fun! I've been wanting to blog regularly and I've been wanting to interact with different bloggers. Time constraints that is so true but I'll make time for my blogging since I get recharged doing this. I'd say this Scavenger Hunt would be one great way to do so. :)

Apr 21, 2007

Photo Hunt 7: Steps


I'm quite late in posting my photo hunt for the week. Blame it on Michael Scofield. I watched a few episodes of Prison Break this afternoon to catch up on what I have missed. I'm here now posting my steps photos. :)

These photos were taken during the officers and managers' team building in my previous company held at Clark Air Base. As part of the management committee we visited our team to show support on this activity. We had our own team building a few weeks before theirs but we did not undergo this kind of physical activity. We thought we 'escaped' this grueling run, roll, crawl, climb stuff. But our managers chanted each of our names to try at least one of these. No, I don't want to cross logs which are like five feet above the ground. I don't want to crawl on the grass under barbed wires only a few inches above the head. And I cannot do the monkey bar. Since I'm not that afraid of heights, I chose to climb this 8-story high ladder. There's harness anyway and we have a guide waiting for us on top to help us go over the other side so we can safely go down. Poise was non-existent at this time but it was a great experience for all of us! The team too appreciated the fact that as their leaders we are willing to support them, go with them all the way, no matter what it takes. :)

I promised my daughter to post too her picture taken at the steps of Botanical Garden in Baguio City. This place is also known as Igorot Village. Igorots is the general reference to the six ethno-linguistic groups born on Central Cordillera. This is a nice place to just walk around and take pictures of the plants and village huts. There's also artists from Baguio National Arts Club which offers to make your portrait in a matter of 15 minutes. We tried it as I've mentioned in my other post. My, they can sketch really well that fast.

Apr 18, 2007

Tag Along

In less than a year of blogging, this is already my third template. I guess I will be perennially in search of a perfect template. I checked this on IE 6 and it doesn't look good. A little distorted and sometimes the pictures do not load at all especially the header. Sometimes too, the blog only shows half of its content. Anyway, it looks great in Firefox and IE 7. Just let me indulge for a few days or weeks. I just love the way this looks. The pictures I post don't look cramped. It's very neat too. :)


The daily grind started last week after the long holiday. Hay, I had a hard time adjusting. I wish we always have holidays that long every month...okay, that may be too much. Every two months will do. I got so full both on my personal and professional tasks. Even the weekend was not spared.

Saturday, it was my daughter's appointment with my dentist-best friend. I was supposed to have my adjustment too but I begged off since I have to meet my group mates the following day. Yes, on a Sunday. We have to finish our presentation for our midterm in Leadership scheduled the next day.

I went to meet them around 1 pm. And who's with me but my daughter. Hubby has a very important matter to attend to also. We still have no househelp. :( For me, it's no problem if I 'tag' along my daughter in my activities. In fact, I prefer it that way if it will not be inconvenient for her. She learns too this way. She also gets to meet the people I interact with. It's a good thing because she recalls them when I tell her who I was with that day, what we did, those things.

After my work and school related activities, it was mother and daughter bonding! While waiting for my husband to pick us up, we went around the nearby mall, bought some things for her and me, had snack. Bliss. A working mom like me takes every moment spent with her family really precious however simple the activities are and even if there's no activity at all.

My daughter, I love her to bits! :)

Another bonding time for us is spending special occasions with our relatives. We live a few cities away from each other. We don't see each other often because everyone's preoccupied with work, with families and other matters. My daughter loves it if she's with her cousins. Good thing she was able to spend time with them during my niece's baptism. My brother's daughter Frankie is not here but my Princess sure would be happy to play with her too. My daughter loves babies. :)

It's late. Time to hit the bed. :)

Apr 15, 2007

Photo Hunt 6: Hobby


I'm going to share some of my hobbies - computers, point-and-shoot kind of photography, reading and cooking. This first photo is taken at my classmate's office. I have been wanting to use this stock photo. I just find the colors nice. Anwyay, it's at their pantry. We were trying to finish our group presentation last term. As you can see the table is a mess with all the books and hand-outs we were browsing on. But that's not the hobby I am talking about. The laptops actually gives the connection for this week's theme. I love computers, I love tinkering with it - hardware and software. I'm proud to say this is all through self-learning. I ask my IT friends and my husband but mostly, I am brave enough to 'play' with our computers on my own. :) Luckily, they're still all in one piece and functioning well. I have a lot to learn I know but that's what makes it exciting for me. Learning and applying what I've learned successfully.

It's a hobby also to take pictures, that's very obvious. Pictures of just about anything but here are three of my favorite subjects - sunrise, the sea, food (just take a peek at my previous entry). One of my family's favorite activities is going out of town and it's imperative that I take snapshots of the places we go to for my collection. :)

Reading is a hobby since I was a child. Haruki Murakami is one of my all-time favorite authors as a grown-up.

Baking is a hobby and preparing pasta but more than these two, I love preparing seafoods especially shrimps. My specialty is shrimps marinated in orange soda. The preparation is very simple but it tastes really good.

Happy photo hunting everyone! :)

Apr 14, 2007

Friday's Feast No. 5

Friday's Feast

When you were a child, which crayon color was your favorite?

Well, not just one but three - brown, green and red. I love drawing a tree bearing apple fruit.

On a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being highest), how likely would you be to change jobs if it required you to move?

It will depend on hubby actually. If everything solely depends on me, I'll consider the job package which better be awesome, where the relocation will be and if I can bring along my family. If it's somewhere in or near California or Las Vegas, it's a 9 because my parents, brother and sister and immediate cousins are all there.

Take all the numbers in your birthday and your phone number and add them up, one by one. What’s the total?

I got seventy seven.

Main Course
Have you ever “re-gifted” anything? If so, what was it and who did you pass it on to?
I haven't really re-gifted anything as far as I can remember. Oh well, I'm a collector. Like, this came from this, that came from that person. Something to that effect. But then most of the time I give away some gifts I have outgrown or don't really need as donations or when there are drives in our office and my daughter's school. Is that 're-gifting'?

Name something you need from the store.
I want some ripe mangoes right now and make some mango shake.


While I'm at my Friday's Feast, let me share with you one of the 'small feasts' we had in one of the restaurants in Baguio City, Everything Nice Cake Shop and Cafe.

The place is cozy enough for a quick lunch and snack. The staff are friendly and very attentive. What I like about them is their sense of urgency. I can see from where I was sitting how they manage the cue of orders being taken in and out of the kitchen such that all are served in less than five minutes.

The chicken is swimming in white sauce that is so creamy it goes very well with the deeply fried chicken, ham and cheese. This chicken cordon bleu instantly became our favorite.

Whenever he can, hubby always takes his meal without rice (a substitute will do). Part of his strategic plan in dieting. Right. :) This hungarian sausage with potato salad suited him well. It's very filling.

Now for the dessert, creme brulee for Andi and their 'home made' potato chips capped our lunch. From our experience, Everything Nice Cake Shop and Cafe lived up to its name, from the place to the staff and of course, the food.

Apr 8, 2007

Photo Hunt 5: Clean


This week's photo hunt is quite a challenge. Good thing I have checked some of my summer photos last year when we visited one of the provinces up North. These pictures were taken in Vigan City, Ilocos Sur. According to their website the Heritage City of Vigan was awarded the cleanest and greenest city in Ilocandia last January 2007. The city is included in UNESCO's World Heritage list since 1999 thus the name. The sites are chosen for their outstanding universal natural or cultural significance (as taken from this glossary).

Take a peek on some of the pictures:

Roughly four US dollars for anyone caught littering.

Established in the 16th century, Vigan is the best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia. Its architecture reflects the coming together of cultural elements from elsewhere in the Philippines, from China and from Europe, resulting in a culture and townscape that have no parallel anywhere in East and South-East Asia. ***Quoted from UNESCO World Heritage Center website.

Apr 7, 2007

Friday's Feast No. 4

Friday's Feast

When you travel, which mode of transportation do you prefer?
I prefer a car or SUV because they're convenient. I can bring with me a lot of things and put them all inside.

Have you ever met a blogging friend in person?

I have a blogger-classmate in graduate school. I don't know if this will count. I knew him first before I came to know he blogs too. But I haven't met yet a blogger or bloggers in person whom I first met online. The Manila Metrobloggers are supposed to have a "gimmick" later this month. I hope it pushes through this time. I have some bloggers in mind who I also want to meet in person one of these days. :)

When was the last time you were really, really tired?

I guess more than two weeks ago when I only had a day to rest in a week because I had to attend a seminar on a weekend. I didn't offset it right away the following week.

Main Course
If you could have dinner with any one fictional character from a book or movie, who would it be?

I always want my dinner light so maybe I'd choose someone who I can have a light conversation with like Superman. But only if he will come as Brandon Routh. :)

Fill in the blank: One day, I hope to see _______________.

I hope to see my family in the US soon. I hope to see Japan's Cherry Blossoms.

Apr 6, 2007

Thursday Thirteen: 13 Things I Appreciate This Week

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen things I appreciate this week.

1. Looking at the pictures from our trip to Baguio last week. As always, it was fun and we had our bonding moments - nothing really spectacular but I cherish moments like these. Going around the city, taking pictures of us, of the scenic views of Baguio. And just staying in our room to have some rest. And rest for real. Like just lie on the bed while watching tv, while munching something, or just having small conversations. I love it!

2. The long holiday which officially starts today, Thursday and ends on April 9, Monday which is the Day of Valor. Anyway, I'm not a Catholic so obviously, I don't observe Holy Week. I take this time to attend to a lot of things which I can't normally squeeze in on ordinary work days. I'd like to start on my digital scrapbook.

3. The sketches of the three of us - my daughter, my hubby and me - done by some of the people from Baguio Arts Guild. They do not ask for an exact fee but just a donation. They're good. :)

4. Knowing the line up of movies on my Leadership class we will have to watch. I've watched most of them before but it would be great to see them again and have some good interaction afterwards especially because my professor knows how to liven up any class discussions.

5. The refresher course I had on Emotional Intelligence last Monday. It gave me some extra boost on dealing with a few people with attitude problems. If I can nurture my relationships better, why not.

6. Being able to blog often this week. I love visiting other blogs and sharing some of my thoughts to the bloggers' posts.

7. Discovering Alex Yoong. :D I'm sure F1 fanatics know him. Well I am not an F1 fanatic but when I got to see Alex Yoong, I told my hubby I like this guy more than Sebastien Loeb of WRC. But then Lightning McQueen is still my guy. :D

8. Preparing one of my feel good foods - champorado (chocolate porridge). My daughter and I love this. And we love it when it's swimming with milk. :)

9. Uploading my "ancient" songs to my laptop for my listening pleasure even if I am at the office. What triggered and prompted me to do this is the tag on seven songs Rachel gave me. Aside from the playlist I've mentioned, I suddenly wanted to listen to the music of my generation, 80s.

10. Waking up later than usual today! I felt so recharged. There was no lazy bone in my body and I was able to multi-task and finish all that I have to do in the morning in a jiffy.

11. The summer rain which we had yesterday and today, it's drizzling outside. They're very welcome.

12. The smiley squeezeball my husband bought not really to function as stress reliever. I don't know what but it now serves as a decoration on top of our computer desk. Looks cute there.

13. Time for myself right this moment while my daughter is playing with her friend inside her room, while my hubby is also having his own quiet moment cleaning the car. :D

This is my first post for Thursday Thirteen and I love it! This is the 14th on my list of what I appreciate this week. :)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Apr 4, 2007

Seven Songs

I was tagged by Rachel on these seven songs. I appreciate it and I will take this opportunity to discuss a bit my musical genealogy. :)

Music, my family loves music - listening to various collections that is. My uncle and my mom loves The Beatles and its contemporaries. My father loves Frank Sinatra and the rest in his league. My eldest cousin loved anything disco, jazz, the Manila sound. That was mid-70s.

I grew up in the 80s listening to New Wave, Punk and pop songs - Michael Jackson, Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, Top 40 by Casey Kasem. 99.5 RT was the station to beat. And the alternative music were played over at XB. Side by side U2, I was a Duran Duran die hard. Those who can still recall - there was a rivalry between Duran Duran and Spandau Ballet. Funny, that was only here in the Philippines. The rest of the world, Duran Duran was lording it over. That was called the British invasion via America, shades of Beatles' popularity.

My husband loves music too. And I have to say he got my attention because he was singing something from The Thompson Twins which is one of my favored bands then.

90s was R&B for me, grunge music and the resurgence of Pinoy bands - Eraser Heads, Rivermaya, Bamboo. Y2K came in. I was lost but I still listen to a lot of them - Incubus, Googoo Dolls, Third Eye Blind, Maroon 5, Stephen Speaks, etcetera. Boy bands did not appeal much to me except for Blue.

Now we're on the last few legs of 2000, sometimes I already ask my daughter who sings what. And there are already a lot of remakes of the most popular songs during my teenage and college days. Geez.

So you see, I have come a long way with my kind of music and I haven't mentioned here all the other genres and obscure musicians I have discovered along the way and continuously discovering.

These are seven songs on my playlist as I type this post. :)

1. Soft Melody by John Kaizan Neptune
I prefer this rather than Sitti's version. More melodic. Funny
thing is one day it just popped on my mind to play this song from
one of my CDs I neatly keep in our collection of audio files. And
when I was playing it, my daughter said Sitti also has a version
of it. That's how I came to know she has a remake of this pala.

2. Bella Luna by Jason Mraz
My husband and I watched his concert last year. Boy were we
mesmerized by his voice. His stage presence is superb! I love
the soothing melody of this particular song of his.

3. Tattooed on My Mind by D'Sound
This song is not even popular yet when my husband and I
fell in love with it. Sexy. Until now, it's in our collection
of our all-time favorite songs.

4. Stay by Lisa Loeb
More than anything it's the movie Reality Bites which made me
love this song to bits. Ethan Hawke was the 'ideal man'
during my time. Angsty, intelligent, non-conformist, good looking.

5. Don't Speak by No Doubt
I just love the way Gwen Stefani gave out so much style singing
this song.

6. Torn by Natalie Imbruglia
Again, I just love the style.

7. Linger by Cranberries
Dolores is a wonderful singer. She makes me want to sing over
and over again.

Thanks again Rach for this. :)

Apr 3, 2007

Monday Madness on Vacation

Monday Madness

This is my first entry for Monday Madness. I like participating in memes like these because they give me something to start writing on. Not that I don't have anything on mind what to post about. As a matter of fact there are so many but these memes give me some kind of organization of thought. :) So let me start with my Monday Madness.

1. Where did you go on your last vacation?
Right timing for all these questions. My family and I just had our mini vacation in Baguio City, the Philippines' official summer capital. I said official since there are so many places here to go (and for some, places to be seen) during summer.

2. Would you go there again? Why or why not?
Of course! It's one of our favorite destinations, summer or not. The weather is nice for one.

3. How many vacations do you take in one year?
Two to three though they aren't really grand, grand vacations. We just like to have some time off away from the city.

4. Where would you REALLY like to go on your next vacation, if money was no issue, and how long would you stay?
If money is no issue, I'd like us to have a European tour, a month will do. :)

5. Do you put a little money aside each week (or month) to save up for your vacation?
Uh-oh. Not really but it's like we do budget our money when the planned vacation date is near already, three weeks to a month thereabouts. But then again saving some money for it on a monthly basis or twice a month is better. Will start on that.


How was my day today? It ended better than it started. Not that it started bad. But early in the evening I was sort of recharged and inspired. Thanks to my professor for being a good motivator. He's not big in words but he's the "walk the talk" type of person. He lives what he "preaches" so to speak.

Lesson for the day is something really obvious: surround yourself with positive people. Their enthusiasm is contagious.

Have a great week ahead!

Apr 2, 2007

Photo Hunt 4: Water


I've been out of town for several days. Will be sharing about it on succeeding posts. Meanwhile, here's my photo for this week's theme, Water. Right timing since it's summer time here in the Philippines. Here are some of my water pictures taken one summer day not so long ago. :)

This picture was taken while on a boat going to Dos Palmas Resort, Puerto Princesa, Palawan. This is quite an experience for me. Our boat stopped for about ten minutes in the middle of Honda Bay. The water is kind of greenish gray which, according to fellow passengers, means we were in the deepest part of the sea. But everything went well as the motorized boat just needed some lubricant for propelling.

And this one's taken at Club Manila East. My hubby and daughter are both water persons and enjoys kayaking even on a pool. :) Since I'm the less adventurous among us, I'm often the one assigned to do some picture taking. I don't really mind since I love capturing special moments with my family. :)