Saturday, April 21, 2018

New Job, New Home

March has been an eventful month. Since I resigned from my previous job, I explored opportunities in corporate communications, training, and technical support. Before that month ended, I had my first day at work.

But aside from a career change, moving out of our house also kept me busy. It wasn't easy since initially, I was still unemployed. Prayer has been my weapon as I faced questions, made decisions, and performed actions. I washed my own clothes, bought food, went to the church on Sundays, attended job interviews, passed difficult exams, completed pre-employment requirements, and even renewed my passport. For these, I would give myself a pat on the back.

Since then, days went by so fast. Our 4-week training classes are finished, and this is truly a new chapter in my career. Do you think I'll be happy here? This picture may be one of the signs:

Meanwhile, in my new home, here's what's cooking:

Mixed veggies omelet,leafy side dish, grilled isaw, and squid served with black rice

Salmon with veggies, served with black rice

I feel contented now. Yes, I may have dreams that belong to the future but my present is worth being thankful for.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Tiny, The Clingy

Whether I'm afraid of dogs or not, I'm no longer certain.

Through the years, I haven't been at ease in the company of dogs. But recently they, especially white ones, have developed friendly relations with me.

Tiny, the pet of my dear friend Rap, is just so addictive that I repeatedly took photos:

Normal State #1

Normal state #2

This dog seems to be thinking "What are my long-term goals?"

This was how Tiny looked at me after munching on a French Toast that morning. 

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Jeepney Must-Haves and Must-Not-Haves

Amidst the government's Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok campaign which apprehends public utility vehicles with violations such as smoke belching and defective parts, let me run through the items which for me, a jeepney should have and should not have.

1. Rope extending from the driver's seat up to the last passenger with the sign "Pull d' string to stop" - To avoid unpleasant ways of stopping the vehicle such as knocking on the ceiling or irritably saying "para" after doing so for three times, setting up a rope is a good idea. The sign is necessary too, so the passenger would know that the rope is not meant for suicidal thoughts despite heavy traffic.

2. Sandalan ng mga pasahero - Nakasakay ka na ba sa jeep na walang sandalan kundi bakal? Masakit 'di ba? Paano pa kung malubak o biglang pumreno.

3. Handrails - Hindi naman kasi lahat ng pasahero, magaling magbalanse. Dapat may kakapitan para hindi masubsob o lumiyad habang tumatakbo ang sasakyan.

4. Trapal - Kapag nagsimula nang umulan at maanggihan, matik 'yan: Ibababa na ng mga pasahero ang trapal kahit hindi sabihan. May mga pasaway lang talagang patay-malisya. Bababa pa tuloy ang tsuper para lang ayusin. Kailangan 'yan para hindi magkasakit o mapulmonya.

5. Driver's Assistant - tiga-sukli man o barker, malaking tulong kung may katuwang ang tsuper. Huwag lang sana ang misis na may kasamang sanggol. Baka araw-araw ay iba-iba pa 'yan kuya!

6. Reserbang gulong - Isa 'to sa mga must-not-haves kapag istorbo sa mga pasahero ang pagkakalagay sa loob. 'Yung tipong nakataas pa ang mga binti ng apektado.

7. Nakakadiring basurahan - Maganda ngang may basurahan sa loob, pero sana naman, hindi 'yung gusgusin o sobrang maalikabok. Minsan, hindi inaasahang mabangga rin ito at tumapon ang mga laman sa paanan ng pasahero. Mabuti kung nakatali.

With that, I hope that our jeepney drivers would go the extra mile to provide a comfortable ride. Saludo po ako sa inyo mga kuya!

Thursday, January 25, 2018

All That Glitters

In a recent blog post, I shared how spray paint can work wonders at home. This time, I'll show you items which we've sprayed gold starting off with a wall clock which was originally white:

The challenge is in covering it properly to prevent paint from seeping into the surface.
Next, our mirror made of rattan turned into this:

Also transformed: The bride and groom figurine on top of my parents' wedding cake in 1985

This 32-year old figurine was given new life, thanks to gold spray paint!
Since we're at it, here are other gold items I like:

Bridal matte lippies "I Do" (an understated nude pink) and "Mon Amour" (a light, sensual red)
designed by Anne Curtis for her wedding day
My favorite Kisses as of the moment
But above all these, always remember: You are gold! ;-)

Monday, January 01, 2018

We'll Always Go Back to High School

Fourteen years after graduating from high school, here we are, still spending some time and laughter together. Thanks to the efforts of Karl and Russ who organized this year's gathering held at Fat Russel's in Sct. Castor, Diliman on December 29.

Photo shared by Karl Edejer, with me standing beside my friend since Grade 2, Marrian

One of the reunion's highlights is having Cristine and her baby Samuel Moses with us:

In this shot, you'd see us holding mobile phones - NOT because we are busy with our own social media but because of the Kahoot app. Two rounds of questions about our high school life were prepared. Just like our younger selves, we were still cooperative!

No cheating please! (Another photo shared by Karl)

Not only did we walk down memory lane through this quiz but also, prior to the dinner, our classmates released funny throwback pictures in the privacy of our Facebook group. To avoid any case that might be filed against me, I'll just share my own picture as posted by Vyron:

JP used to be the Christmas Party organizer but since this is the second year that he isn't around, Karl asked me to print his picture before leaving the house. JP doesn't know I did that, so let's keep it a secret. Hehe...

Dinner organizer Karl with JP's picture
I think this is just the best way to start blogging in 2018, thinking about this rare bunch of genuine, funny, caring, and sentimental titos and titas of Manila. Truly, friends for keeps.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I always look forward to December because this is when I usually spend time with rarely seen yet close friends. Looking at my post last year, there seems to be a pattern. There is our company Christmas party, a hosting stint, simple family get-together, and a wedding. There's also something new. Here's my December list for 2017:

1. Sorpresa Laroza (December 9) - Paul is a close friend from high school, so when his wife Jhackie texted about a surprise birthday party at McDo and needing help in contacting our other friends, I was very willing and excited! (It's funny that just last month, I also blogged about Haydee's McDo party. My friends are indeed young at heart. Birdie, who's part of Ronald's gang, was present in both parties.)

Photos shared by Paul and Jhackie

2. MTC and Achorn International Christmas Party (December 10) - It was my first time to host their program last year, so when they contacted me again, I gladly said yes. Aside from their traditions (raffle and Stars of the Night), the song and dance performances were impressive. With their talented employees and guest performers, there was no dull moment. My personal favorite is the dance group "The Millennials" comprised of Jayson Ayala, Sarah Borja, Kim Velasquez, Shaira Mae Tolosa, and Justin Dimatulac. Members of the SHE band were also great performers.

Just before the event

3. RJ Tutor Gathering (December 16) - Curious, I didn't pass on the chance to attend the tutor gathering for the first time. Like in the previous smaller event for online tutors, co-tutor Al was there. We joined the games, munched on finger food, and posed for the photo booth.

RJ Tutor Gathering

The activity card asked us to have a photo taken with a Japanese staff, so here's mine with a moment of success: I finally caught the ball using the wooden instrument.

My friend Al is on the top right.

5. AHEAD Dinner (December 22) - Another first, Since I've been with AHEAD for six months. We all had dinner at The Alley by Vikings - The president's treat!

Photo shared by our president, Rossana Llenado

6. Conti Family Lunch (December 23) - Aside from my favorite baked shrimp dish from Conti's (though we aren't related to the owners of the popular bakeshop and resto), this year's highlight is what kept the kids and adults busy: Hatchimals!

From a giant egg, these twin Hatchimals finally met my cousin's daughter Micha

7. Pat's Wedding (December 27) - Pat and I have been friends since 2003, our Communication Arts days. This friendship continued up to when she was already taking Comparative Literature and I, Broadcast Communication. We lost contact when we were already working, and got reunited on Facebook and a chance encounter at Robinson's Magnolia. This is why being invited to witness her wedding is just amazing. Though the journey had been long, it's comforting that I never really lost her as a friend.

During the Christian ceremony, the pastor talked about 7 Marriage Essentials: a. God; b. Commitment; c. Communication; d. Romance; e. Trust; f. Forgiveness; and g. Financial Stability.

With Mr. and Mrs. Elpedez

Tonight, I'll be going to the annual Wisdom reunion. More fun awaits...

Sunday, December 17, 2017

5 Sure-Fire Ways to Save Money

It's one thing to have a mindset that you would be saving for your future and take big steps to achieve it. It's another to be wise and to always be on your toes whenever small temptations or distractions come up. Here's my advice to the gullible:

1. Order a la carte. When I go to KFC for example, I get to know the price difference between the value meal and the a la carte. Not only do I save some, I also avoid the temptation of having soda every time.

2. Make it a habit to inspect the receipt and answer surveys. Did you know that you could get free mashed potato at KFC every time you answer their survey? How about free chicken tenders at Wingstop? Just look at the receipt to see the websites where you could give customer feedback and how to redeem the freebies. Aside from restaurants, gas stations also frequently give back to those who participate in surveys.

3. Thinking of hanging out in your favorite milk tea cafe? Buy Nestea milk tea instead. And buy it from the grocer, not 711. Thai Milk Tea is my favorite variant, followed by Wintermelon. I like having it on the rocks.

4. Sell your stuff on Carousell or donate to Segunda Mana, the fund-raising project of Caritas Manila. We live in a world of excesses, and rather than hoarding or holding on to things that no longer add value to my life, I prefer selling online and putting the other items in donation boxes found in churches. For bigger items and furniture, you can schedule a pickup. The details are here.

5. Stay away from misleading banners such as "50 off" and "eat all you can for 250." For the last tip here in my blog entry, I'm giving everyone a caveat: "50 off" might just mean 50 pesos off and not 50% less, while "eat all you can for 250" might just be the rate for kids. These are my real life experiences recently, so beware!

*This post is not sponsored.