Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The doctor is out


There are probably only 20 (tops) people who read my blog. So it's really odd for me to want to leave a note saying that I'll be offline for a while. On the other hand, my mom may visit the blog and feel disappointed at not seeing any new pictures of Malachi, so here goes.

It's exam week in school, which means I'm pressed for time. The term will end this Friday - when I would have successfully submitted my marketing plan and taken my finals in Corporate Finance. I also look forward to drinking unbelievably cold beer Friday night.

Until then, wish me luck!

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Little Things

A store called TLTSN (The Little Things She Needs) opened in Manila a few months ago. Whoever thought of the name must understand women. To some, the little knick knacks that we buy are pointless. Ponytail holders gather dust. We only have two feet, so why buy so many pairs of shoes? And do we really need that many shades of lipsticks? But these are needs, I tell you. These things, among others, make us happy. We could of course exercise or volunteer for a good cause to genuinely feel good about ourselves, but those things take time. These are immediate. Short-lived, yes. But they're immediate. :p

That said, (ang haba ng intro) can I just share a photo of these pumps that I recently got from TLTSN?


Nice no? These are made of synthetic suede. And did you notice the heel height? They are barely 2" high, which makes them very sensible. I especially like that these shoes have a vintage feel to them. "Feel" being the qualifier to my opinion because I sure as hell don't want to wear shoes already worn by someone in the 1950s.

The second little thing that I got last week are these -


Anthology Kyotos. They don't show well in the photo above but the right one has a violet upper while the left one has a blue upper. Very weird. Here's a photo from the Anthology website -


As always, the detailing on Anthology shoes speaks well of Filipino (Marikina)-made products. I own another pair of Anthology shoes that have been through close to 2 years of abuse and they still look fine. Note that Anthology shoes are not true to size though. I should order one size up next time.

By the way, the above were bought on sale. So, No, mother. I haven't been squandering money again. Besides, these would be all this month.

I hope. Toodles.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Sunday, March 25, 2012

I think these on a Sunday

Pao's job requires that he travel a lot. I often kid that I feel like the wife of a part-time overseas worker, but it's true.

It was easier when it was just the two of us. I occupied myself with retail therapy or trips to the bookstore. But things are different with Malik around.



Since Pao and I both hold full-time jobs, weekends are reserved for family. I think Malik knows this because on weekends, he wakes up in the morning expecting to see us by his side. Most of the time, he'll find mama and papa there. But some weekends like today, it'll be just mama.

I try to make weekends without Pao, normal. Last night, I brought Malik to Barbara's in Intramuros to see a cultural dance presentation. It took a while for us to get there, considering the rain and my non-existent sense of direction. But we got there alright. What was interesting is that, in the middle of the show, Malik started pointing to a guy in the audience, thinking it was Pao. : /

Spot the baby. :)
Oh well. These are the cards that life has dealt us. And really, we should be thankful for our jobs and the opportunities that come our way. I see no reason to complain.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Law of Attraction

I haven't read the book, The Secret. But I am great believer of claiming promises. This is why I may be the only person in Manila who buys boots in the middle of summer. I just know I'm going someplace cold this year. I have no idea where that is, or when it's going to happen. But believe you me, it will.




"Whether you think you can or think you can't, either way you are right." - H.F.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Artsy craftsy

I was feeling especially crafty a few weeks ago. I used Malik's Play Doh to make all sorts of things, like this clay lapu lapu. Weeeh


I also got a bunch of crafty stuff from Little Emily. Here are some mini-envelope cards -


- some rubber stamps and fabric tapes.


And then I got these alphabet rubber stamps.


One of my favorite bloggers Lloyda Lim sells these vintage rubber stamps over at her Multiply store, Hobby Depot. But I found these in a stall in SM North, selling for 1/3 of Hobby Depot's price. Jackpot.

As is most often the case with my shopping binges, I have no idea how or when I will use these yet. For a short time I was rubber stamping Malik's name on his books but soon got tired of it. I did give a birthday present to a friend yesteday but forgot all about my stash. I could give my friend a gift card separarely. Or two giftcards. Maybe three.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

For a moment there

I came very close to buying Pao a toy helicopter for Christmas. I already asked that the toy be tested. But as soon as I saw the ridiculous line to the cashier, I picked up the rest of my shopping bags and got out of there. I didn't think Pao was serious when he said he wanted it. At least until Pao went ahead and bought one for himself.



The boys had a fun time flying it around the house...



...for a while. Because now the helicopter's just parked on top of the refrigerator. Sayang. Does anyone need a lift to anywhere?

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Monday, March 19, 2012

Mommy's turn

The bag of goodies in Saturday's post also contained great stuff for mom. Syempre naman. Got this fabulous palette of eyeshadows and blushes from Shany. I honestly doubt that I'll get to use all of these colors (the yellowish ones imply jaundice to me). But for the sake of experimenting, I think I'll try each of them at least once.



Also got these Covergirl Lash Blast Volume mascaras. Tried this last year and I love that it isn't clumpy when applied. I made the mistake of ordering waterproof ones though. I'm not a fan of waterproof makeup. They take too much of my time. Argh.



I am most excited about these EcoTools brushes and eyeshadow base from Nyx -



The eyeshadow base claims to make the color of your eyeshadows brighter and to help keep them on longer. It takes a lot of effort to blend eye makeup in the morning, so it makes sense to want to have them on longer. I have 14-hour workdays spent in school and at work. We'll see if Nyx really works.



Finally, the EcoTools brushes - kabuki, powder, concealer and eyeshadow. The handles are made of sustainable bamboo and the bristles are made of taklon.



Taklon is the common name for a synthetic fiber used in artist-quality paint, makeup and pin strip brushes. It is a smooth, soft, and somewhat fragile polyester derivative devoid of any protein component or allergen elements and is therefore used in the cosmetic industries as a "green", "vegan", "allergy free" or synthetic alternative to animal hair brushes

Taklon is supposed to be more hygienic than real hair because the bristles don't have irregularities in them that trap make-up and bacteria. I cannot confirm that claim without the help of a microscope (naks) but I do know that these brushes feel sooooo soft. I love them.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Saturday, March 17, 2012

New toys!

Malik was a very happy toddler on Thursday because a bag of goodies arrived with these inside -



Disney Cars AppMATes! Yey.

Here's Malik patiently waiting for me to open the box -



Here's Malik still patiently waiting for me to open the box -



And then here's Malik getting irritated because I'm taking too long to open the box. Heehee -



The app couldn't detect the toys when we first go it, which explains the many bad reviews these things have in the Amazon store. We Googled troubleshooting tips and tried out most of them, e.g. hold toy very lightly by its windows, place toy on flat surface before using it on the iPad, but they weren't working. We ended up just "sleeping on it," hoping that somehow the toys will work.



Well we took them out again yesterday and what do you know, they're okay now.



Our iPad responds best to the Finn Mc Missile toy car - that's the blue toy that Malik's holding in the photo above. So maybe the toys were just suffering from a jet lag. Adjusted na sila ngayon. Heh Thanks Tet and Mike!

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Friday, March 16, 2012

Amazeballs

There are two amazing things about this photo. (Sorry for skewing the photo a bit. Had to crop out a rug on the floor. Heh)


One is that this lady is my niece. Jowie and her family lived in my parents' home in San Juan while they were just starting out. She was born when I was about to graduate from high school. So yeah, I saw her wobble around the house in her diapers and wake up dreamily in the morning, asking for a bottle of milk. Look at her now all dressed up for her JS prom. How time flies.

Second is that this dress was made by my sister. Oh sorry, this dress AND this jacket/bolero. Here's my sister in a dress that she, by the way, also made herself. Amazing. I can't even sew a baby's bib even if my life depended on it!


Anyway, the moral of this blog post is that we don't have to search far for things that make us go "WOW". Amazing moments happen all the time. It's just a matter of recognizing when little victories make for extraordinary days. I, thank you.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Almost there

This pakipot dance number is brought to you by Mumble and the rest of the Happy Feet penguins ...



It's Wednesday! There are only three more days before the weekend. Hang in there. :)

Monday, March 12, 2012

Our Baby Can Read

Malik began the Your Baby Can Read program when he was around 8 months old. Like I said, I wasn't a fan.  I didn't believe much in the theory until ...


We discovered that Malik can read words solely by accident. Pao wrote down the word "bubbles" on a piece of paper and Malik was able to read it. It is serendipitous that "bubbles" is one of the few words that Malik can actually say. Had Pao written down "car," Malik would have read it as "ty"* and we wouldn't have discovered that Malik knows what "car" actually means. 

We weren't able to follow the program's schedule as prescribed.  I couldn't be bothered to take that seriously because I wasn't a believer of the program in the first place. So now Malik has been viewing the volume 1 DVD for about a year already, when he should have finished the entire program in 6 months. Toink. 

I was worried that the program would mess up Malik's learning pattern - as in Malik can tell words by their shape but won't be able to read words outside of the flashcards provided. My new insurance agent used the program for her daughter though and she swears that the program works. Her daughter started reading at 2 1/2 years old. They discovered this when she read "Happy Easter everybody" in an Easter card. Amazing. 

In addition to the three words above, Malik can read most of the words in the volumes 1 & 2 DVDs. I hope to take a video of those as well so we can document it and at least track his progress. I am still skeptical. We'll see where this takes us. 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ye-mah

What I like about being a student again *ahem* is that I get to meet new people from all sorts of backgrounds and all walks of life. Most of the time, I am surrounded by lawyers or older colleagues who have sadly become jaded about what the remainder of our lives could offer us. My classmates on the other hand, are about 5 years younger than me(on average).* They are new mathematicians, accountants, IT people, engineers, and business owners who are still able to see a lot of potential in the littlest of things.

One classmate in her mid-20s put up a small business called Geicks! with her friends from U.P. They tasted Rodillas' yema cakes on a trip to the Pahiyas festival in Tayabas, Quezon  when they decided to why-the-hell-not distribute these yema cakes in Manila. The idea is simple but brilliant. Geicks! does not claim to make the best yema/caramel cakes, but they will spare you the four-hour trip to Tayabas and will deliver the best to your doorstep.

Rodillas' yema cake by Geicks!
Half - Php299 / Whole - PhP549
Soft chiffon cake with overflowing yema icing and cheese shavings
Rodillas' caramel cake by Geicks!
Half - PhP299 / Whole - P549
This one has the same base as the yema cake, but the sugar in the caramel icing tastes more prominent and the cheese shavings are replaced  with chocolate shavings.

I am personally not a fan of chiffon cakes. I like the denser varieties better, as in cheesecakes, really dense chocolate cakes, turtle pies...yum. But I'm sure some of us who like lighter cakes will love these.

I have tasted both the yema and caramel  cakes. They are fluffy and not too sweet. They remind me of Estrel's caramel cakes, just with less pomp but with the same tradition. As you can see, Rodillas' cakes come in simple rectangles and there isn't much going on in terms of presentation; but people who grew up eating these cakes in Tayabas will move heaven and earth to get their grubby hands on a slice. :)

To order, visit Geicks! or SMS 0927-6881591 .   

* True background story: We were submitting our exam papers in one of our classes when a classmate told me " Grabe, ang tatanda na ng classmates natin no? 1997 ang student number." To which I replied: "Uhm. Oo." Haha

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Sa Zoo

Manila Zoo isn't so much a zoo now as it is a park. We took Malik there last month and they only had a handful of animals.

Here's a huge hippo enjoying his afternoon snack. It's amazing how animals this big eat only grass.

If  there was one kind of animal that Manila Zoo had a LOT of, that would be the tiger. I'd say 1/4 of the animals there were tigers in pairs. Maybe they were rescued from breeders?


Malik: "Let's get out of here!"
Oooh, by the way. Malik calls tigers, "tay-den".
Manila zoo also had some snakes and boas ...

...that lived in this cave-like structure here. Creepy.
I was hoping Malik would at least see a giraffe but it turns out they don't have one. At least they had a resident elephant, but I felt really bad for him/her. He lives alone, in a concrete structure with shrimp-y looking trees/shrubs in the perimeter.

Can you tell from the photos that Malik was scared? 
I am suddenly reminded that once upon a time, I said I won't patronize zoos anymore. Animals in zoos are scared and sad. But I became a mother, and that resolution was "modified."


We paid a measly P40 to get into Manila Zoo, which probably explains why it is so poorly maintained. What makes me sadder is that people who get to see tigers for P40 can't even bother to throw their trash in the bins rather than in the alligator's pond. That's just so ungrateful of us.

The alligator/crocodile pond. Notice the floating plastic bottles. Tsk.
There's a petting zoo to the side of the entrance, which I hear is a lot better than the actual zoo. The animals there are free to roam around and look healthier daw. Maybe we'll visit that next time.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Ours is bigger

Malik isn't over his Disney Cars phase yet. He isn't exactly compelling me to buy most Lightning McQueen products that come into my line of sight. Maybe it's the other way around. As in I've been reinforcing his liking for the cartoon by getting him all these things.


We chanced upon this app in the Apple Store last week. It's called the Disney Cars AppMATe and it may be downloaded for free. But the idea is for parents to buy their kids the car that goes with the app. That is, at the very unreasonable price of about USD20. Boo. Ang liit kaya.


I have successfully resisted buying the device. The "paper" Lightning McQueen that comes with the app works just fine for Malik.


Besides, who needs a digital race track when you can get this at your local SM Hypermart?


(Mat is P200 or about USD4) Zoom zoom.


- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Age appropriate

There is a reason behind everything - like the recommended age displayed prominently in toy boxes. I know this now because we got pogiboy an Optimus Prime toy for Christmas. The box read "12 yrs+," I suppose because it had rotating and detachable parts. Plus the skills required to transform Optimus into a "Tee"* was rated "Advanced." But we figured, why not? A toy is a toy. Malik can be taught not to tug at Optimus' arms...It's a Go.


We were wrong. Fast forward to a month later and this is what we're left with -


Malik's very own Optimus Pilay. Hay.

*means "car". See our Glossary of Malik-isms.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Monday, March 5, 2012

Wanderlust

I need to travel. Every day living can drive us crazy if we're not careful so going on vacations for me is not a luxury but a necessity. The last time we went out of town was for a quick trip to Tagaytay. Malik rode a horse-drawn "carriage" for the first time -


We dropped by Sonya's garden just to show our friend Stephen what the fuss was all about. (Frankly, there really isn't much to see there). But the pan de coco from their bakery is worth a try.


And oooh, we had breakfast at the Bag of Beans.


The place looked homey and was great for taking pictures but the food took forever and was so-so. Ladi-da.


Then the boys, young and old, played basketball and hung out.*





Holy week this year falls on a five-day weekend. I've been searching for good deals on trips but it looks like I started searching too late. I don't want to spend those five days just going to the mall. Sayang naman, so I hope I find something interesting and affordable soon. How about you? Where is your family headed?

*Translation: Tumambay lang. :D

- posted via BlogPress for iPad
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