Ninang, officially.

I finally met the munchkin!

Near the end of April 2016, Kaye told me that Eve’s Christening was on May 8.

Without hesitation, I stopped everything I was doing and started to look for flights to Singapore. Even pestered by manager to allow me take a leave of absence. There was just no way on Earth I was going to miss this milestone! Lol.

Since my diagnosis, this is my first time to be that far away from home. I am proud to say that I did not let that stop me. As soon as I told my Mom why I had to travel, she permitted me knowing that she can’t say anything to make me not go. Hehe. I assured that I am in good hands.

Kaye and I coordinated to find me a dialysis center and we did! I brought my brother along too; he was more than happy to throw away all this plans just to join me.

I wish Kaye and I had more time together but I was adjusting to the time, the heat, my condition, and she was busy nursing her baby. The trip was was still well worth it, of course. It’s an important event in Kaye’s my *ahem* INAANAK’s *ahem* life. Kaye and I will have plenty more years to catch up. It was awesome seeing her grow her own family.

And Eve, OMG! The cutest little thing I’ve laid my eyes on in a long time.

Bless her, her parents and future siblings (? hehe) with the very best! ❤

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Ebiang
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And she has arrived…!!!

What would you do when your bestfriend sends you something like this?

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Like any proper, sane bestfriend would react, I…. WENT HYSTERICAL!!!

Kaye and her husband Gio had been trying to get pregnant for some time and this was how she broke the news to me that God has granted them their prayers. And I cannot be any happier for them.

During Kaye’s wedding, part of my speech as her Maid of Honor was telling her other family and friends how long we’ve known each other. I had a line where I said, “from crayons, to homework, to make up, to crushes, to work and earning money, and now a husband.” Fast forward to May 2015, we’re talking about a baby – A BABY! An actual little human living and developing inside her belly! Wow!

Through the following months, she shared pictures of her growing tummy, ultrasounds, and told me stories of how she’s feeling, vitamins she’s taking, the changes that were happening to her, how the baby was kicking in the middle of the night and not making her sleep, etc.

Right after Christmas she told me that she will be admitted in the hospital the following Monday to be induced. Imagine the nervous wreck I was while in UAE and she’s all the way in Singapore.

Our conversation went understandably on and off that Monday. Then one fine skip of a heartbeat and the next, she sent me this.

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SHE’S FINALLY HERE!!!! And the mother is doing perfectly alright too!

For the record, Kaye gave birth to a healthy 3.11kg baby girl at 4:27pm on 28 December 2015 and named here EVE.

I can’t be any happier for the new parents. Current circumstances could not make me travel to Singapore but we will see each other on Eve’s Christening.

Below are some of the photos Kaye shared to me during the course of her pregnancy. Enjoy!

Congratulations to the new parents. You have great family and friends loving and supporting you both and your growing family every step of the way.

eve
A screenshot from the Youtube video Gio made to announce the arrival of their little angel.

 

The DIY Christmas Series : Decor

From September to December, Kaye and I have decided to dedicate our BFF Series to the festive spirit of Christmas.

In our home country, the Philippines, Christmas is a 4- to 5-month long celebration which starts in September and being it my favorite season, I am an advocate to keep the spirit alive all year long – except for special days when tantrums and whatnots come along 😉

I love watching DIYs and love to claim that I have so many ideas in my mind. However, I must admit that DIYs are Kaye’s forte – her entry for this post and the whole of her blog site is proof enough 😉 I guess I can copy or follow if there are instructions provided but making things from scratch will take a lot of work for me. I always end up in a mess and come out with a really simple one or some times nothing! Hehe. Hey, at least I try. 🙂 I think I’m much better at organizing things and food.

Since I am aware that I’m crappy at DIYs, instead of venturing into creating something from scratch, I have decided to recycle some unused things around the house.

First off, I collected materials that I knew would come handy.

Loads of glitters! You can never have enough for such a jolly season. This picture has scissors, glue, acrylic paint, loose glitters and glitter pens.
Loads of glitters! You can never have enough for such a jolly season. This picture has scissors, glue, acrylic paint, loose glitters and glitter pens.
1 & 2 - Paint brushes and my choice of glitters (gold & silver); 3 - My choices of acrylic paint (blue, white, red)
1 & 2 – Paint brushes and my choice of glitters (gold & silver); 3 – My choices of acrylic paint (blue, white, red)

I prepared my desk by placing some water and old newspaper. Glitter and paint are never the neatest combination! 02 - prep

I wanted something which I can hang on the main door to replace that wicked chime (I dislike chimes – irritating little buggers). It took me forever to think how am I going to do such a thing. I swear I had lots of drawings in my head but landed up with this idea because I didn’t know how I would do the more difficult ones I thought of. Lol.

1. I made and printed some square patterns to create some hanging ornaments and stuck them on blue art paper; 2 - 4. I cut and folded alternatively to show both sides of white and blue; 5 - 6. Finished product, front and side view
1. I made and printed some square patterns to create some hanging ornaments and stuck them on blue art paper; 2 – 4. I cut and folded alternatively to show both sides of white and blue; 5 – 6. Finished product, front and side view
This where I will be hanging the paper ornaments. It's regular wooden frame from Ikea and I removed the pieces in the center.
This where I will be hanging the paper ornaments. It’s regular wooden frame from Ikea and I removed the pieces in the center.
Tada! I hung the ornaments with dark brown thread to make it blend with our door, decorated the sides of the frame with glitters and added a couple more ornaments made of magazine pages.
Tada! I hung the ornaments with dark brown thread to make it blend with our door, decorated the sides of the frame with glitters and added a couple more ornaments made of magazine pages.
The wicked chime! Wahaha!
The wicked chime! Wahaha!

Second and last piece.

I’m a sucker of light emitting objects especially lanterns.

We have couple of these which were bought from Ikea 3 houses ago. It was too heavy to hang so it was kept in storage since. I decided to take them out and finally make us of them :)
We have couple of these which were bought from Ikea 3 houses ago. It was too heavy to hang so it was kept in storage since. I decided to take them out, dust them off and finally make us of them 🙂

Process…

1. I realized I had to coat it in white first because when I tried directly applying the blue paint, the color was not at visible; 2. Blue as the second coat; 3. Glitters! :)
1. I realized I had to coat it in white first because when I tried directly applying the blue paint, the color was not at visible; 2. Blue as the second coat; 3. Glitters! 🙂
I did the same procedure for the other lantern, coating it red this time and adding more glitters to the lock and hinges
I did the same procedure for the other lantern, coating it red this time and adding more glitters to the lock and hinges
Final Product! Tadaaaa!!!
Final Product!
Tadaaaa!!!

14d I added more details by using glitter pens and since the glass was a little dull, I happen to have some glass paint in my possession and starting dabbing it away on each glass surface.

This is how it looks like when lit in the dark. The camera gets a blur shot but it looks wonderful.
This is how it looks like when lit in the dark. The camera gets a blur shot but it looks wonderful.

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A little behind the scene sneak peek…

I had to snack in between since I was absolutely clueless as to what I wanted to do ;p
I had to snack in between since I was absolutely clueless as to what I wanted to do ;p
It is out of habit to post a picture of a face in my blog but I just have to share her reaction. This is my niece and she loves the color blue and glitters and lights. ♥ I think she likes the outcome of my project :)
It is out of habit to post a picture of a face in my blog but I just have to share her reaction.
This is my niece and she loves the color blue and glitters and lights. ♥ I think she likes the outcome of my project 🙂

Project : Autobiography

1515es

The BFF and I have been discussing about memories and the possibility of loosing them due to old age. We thought that it would be nice to keep some sort of evidence or  journal about the lives we are living so we can recall them later and laugh at ourselves! Hehe. And so our families’ future generations can also get to know us long after we’ve gone.

Since we have been keeping blogs for quite some time now, we decided to take it up a notch and “try” to write a book. Something which can still be kept after all the computer servers in the world have crashed.

We will be making autobiographies! And this project will be due exactly a year from today.

September 10, 2015

We are not professional writers and often seek help from our friend Google.

Tips are welcome to help us with this goal.

^_^.

Desktop Necessities

I love desks. I love having a space where I can work and have all the things I need at arms length.
I currently use 2 desks – at home and my cubicle at the office. And this is what the BFF and I are going to talk about this month.
You can read hers here.

We’ll start off with a full view of the desks…

Desktops Views (top) home (bottom) office
Desktops Views (top) home (bottom) office

Yep, this is pretty much what both desktops look like (on a good day! lol).

Obviously, my desk at home has more items since it’s for personal use. So, let’s now start checking the must haves…

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Pens! Loads of them!

Not only do I have pens on my desks but, in the office, I have hidden away my “specials pens” from plain view. I don’t have to hide any pen at home because everyone in the household knows that my stuff are off limits. In the office though, my colleagues have the habit of grabbing whatever pens they will see on top of whose desk and I’ve learned to stop hoping that they get returned. I don’t mind anymore, I’m sure I’m like that too. There are, however, pens that I love using more as I feel that it makes my writing and pensmanship smoother.

These are the “special ones”. Lol. They’re Dong-A My Gel refillable fine-tipped pens which I can only get in Philippines. The pens on the right are provided by the office. What makes them special are their tips. The ones in this picture is are 0.7 tips which is finer and rarely ordered that the common 1.0 tips which has broader points – and I don’t like them. Arte ko lang?! There was once a .01 gel pen that I used in college and I am still in the quest to find it.

Doodle pads
Doodle pads

I can never have enough of doodle pads. I write on almost anything. I try to be environment friendly by tearing up unimportant and no longer used paper and use the blank side as scratch paper.

Stationery organizer
Stationery organizer

If you notice from my office desk, here are no staplers, punchers, and the likes. It’s because it’s also hidden – for the same reason. Lol. Don’t you just hate it when after a day’s work is done, you suddenly can’t find the very item to keep things organized? And you can see from this picture the stash of “special pens” under the scissors. (No, not the try-hard drawing of Angelina Jolie” – I tried!)

At home is a similar organizer, only 3 times smaller. Though I have the regular size of these items (somewhere in my mess which I purposely did not include in the pictures), I found this little organizer very cute. I included a regular sized pen marker for scale references.

08 Here’s the other organizer.

That about concludes the common desk must-haves between my office and home desk.

Now, for the things which can only be found in my house desk.

Cork Board
Cork Board

One needs a place to pin all those memos. I purposely bought a small cork board because if I buy anything bigger, I’ll keep pinning things until everything is overlapping and I will never be able to find what I needed and the purpose of pinning it there will make no sense.

Book corner
Book corner

A corner on the left side of my desk is where I keep the books and/or notebooks that I have plans to do something with. My other books are on a shelf next to my desk and the recent ones that I am reading are kept in my bag so I can read them whenever I have the time wherever I am.

Lamp
Lamp

Since I share a room with 4 other ladies and love working late, a lamp is a must. I got this from Ikea’s As Is section for only Dhs 33.00 (vice the original Dhs 70ish).

"Drawer"
“Drawer”

The design of my desk does not include drawers. It has shelves that seem like its for drawers but it’s really not. I plan to buy those collapsible drawers from Ikea have do not have the chance to yet. In the mean time, I placed the shoes boxes where I keep my other little trinkets.

See the things on the life side of the top shelf?

Yes, they're VHS tapes!! The most valuable ones!
Yes, they’re VHS tapes!! The most valuable ones!

We’re now down to my last 2 favorites.

Note weights
Note weights

“Note weights” – I really have no idea what to call these. They’re tiny little silver apples, each weighing a tonne!!! No kidding! They may be pea-sized but you can seriously hurt someone if you accidentally drop one. The set was a gift from my mom which she bought from somewhere in Europe in one of her travels. She knows I love small things – and she’s right! This was bought years ago but I’ve never really used them in fear that they might get lost or someone takes an interest and ask for one of the apples. But I love keeping them where I can easily take a glimpse at them.

Tisyu-to-Go
Tisyu-to-Go

There’s something hanging on the top left side. It’s a portable coreless tissue roll container. I went to the Philippines for a couple of weeks, found this, bought it, and now I’m crazy about it! In my Bag Blog, I mentioned that I like removing the core of a tissue roll so I can carry it around without having to be so bulky but need to sandwich it in between some other things so it will not roll out or get squished. This little thing, however, solves the puzzle. The plastic is hard enough to keep the tissue in place and make it roll smoothly while pulling the tissue is just as smooth too. I don’t have to wrestle with the whole roll. Refills are bought separately.

Some of the other things I keep laying around the desk is my phone charger, a mirror, lotion, and other things which are by my side only when needed.

They say that, “A messy desk is a sign of genius” *wink wink!* – Naaahh!! My home desk was a mess! I made a frantic fixer upper for virtual purposes of this blog. And I always clean up my office desk at the end of the day before leaving. 🙂

The Budget Challenge

I travelled to the Philippines for a couple of weeks and had limited access to a computer and the internet. So to stay true anyway to our end of July deadline for this blog, I wrote things down.

I feel like I have not written anything for the longest time.  I used to love to write but since technology is ever so available now, everything can be typed into our computers and cellphones. I must say, having to literally have to write down this entry was a little exciting.

You can find Kaye’s entry here.

And mine are all said in the pictures below.

 

Author’s Note:

I am not the best at budgeting nor at spending. But I do know it is important to compare prices and it’s ok to admit that there things which are a little over my budget and I just simply cannot afford them sometimes (most of the time!). 🙂

Dreams Unlimited 2014

I have a habit of saying “pangarap ko to!” (“This is a dream come true!”) whenever I get to accomplish things out of my Bucket List. It was only recently when the BFF enlightened me that “Dreams” and “Bucket Lists” are two similar but actually different things. Dreams being things we want to achieve and the latter are things we want to do and experience before our time on Earth is over.

With that new information, it seemed to me that all I’ve been doing my entire life is ticking things off my Bucket List – I just aim to move from one item to the next. Seemed pathetic because I struggled to answer the question “in that case, what are my dreams???” Do I want a house? A car? Bungee jump somewhere?

Since the BFF and I decided that June’s blog will be about our dreams, I have done nothing but contemplate on knowing exactly what they are for me. (Read about hers in her blog)

Some of what you will read here may seem small to you or other people but these are mine and I hope one day I can achieve them.

 

Who am I?

I dream to leave a mark in this lifetime . My own identity achieved by my passion and whatever it is I do best. My road to figuring out what really makes my clock tick seems to be taking longer than I expected because until now, I’m not quite sure what I really want and where I really want to be. And when I do get there, how do I know I’m there?

The following dreams are mentioned and defined in no particular order. Of course, no matter which order I mention it, family always comes first in my book.

 

Independence

I am 29 years old and I still live with my family. My mother still comments about so many aspects about my life and because of this, at times when I’m really sure I know what I want to do, I hesitate knowing that she will have a different opinion which could escalate to an argument between us and I totally dislike the drama. I believe there is some point when we need to go out on our own and figure out for ourselves what we’re made of and how we apply them to our daily life for the rest of our lives. I do have the license to go out, have fun, date, etc. I guess I just feel that I will not be able to practice my full adult capacity unless I move out.

 

A place of my own
A place of my own

With Independence being said, Step 1 to be independent is to find my own place but separating from my family seems to be out of the question for now. However, I do dream of building / purchasing a place of my own. My parents have worked very hard to give us all the comfort that we have now (and I am so grateful and proud of them!), but I want to be able to do and have something and 100% claim that I worked hard for it. Though I am aiming for a house, a condo would not be bad (these options are for investments back home). But if we are talking about having my own place here in Abu Dhabi, I would settle for a small room with an attached bathroom to get started.

 

Savings & Loans
Savings & Loans

Wouldn’t it be nice to know that just in case some things do not go according to plan, you have funds to keep you safely afloat while strategizing your next move? Apart from trying to save, one of my priorities right now is to keep a good-paying job and help my parents in any way possible to keep our debts down to a minimum. I know how happy and comfortable my family would be especially our parents.

 

Mom & Dad
Mom & Dad

I dream for that day when I can tell my parents, “Mom, Dad, stop working. I’ll take it from here.” I want them to start relaxing and enjoying the rest of their life. I want to them to be able to travel and do anything they want and I’ll take care of everything they would need. They deserve it!

 

Travel
Travel

I want to see the world! I’m a sucker for old-style-looking places like Vigan in the Philippines and love the old bricked roads I see in pictures of London, France, Italy, and Spain. Castles and museums, too. I can easily loose myself in places like that. In general, I want to experience travelling anywhere I wish. This includes exploring all parts of the Philippines too.

 

Blogs
Blogs

Our blogs started out for fun and to keep in touch with each other. Since we agreed that we were to make it public, it doesn’t hurt to dream that one day we can do this professionally. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to do the things you love and get paid doing them?

 

Business
Business

If our blogs take off, it will be like a business all on its own. We need to find our content and present it well. If not blogging, I’ve always dreamt of having a coffee shop with an acoustic corner. Just a warm quiet place where everyone can just relax and hang out. I am currently in no position to start my own business at the moment. There is so much I feel I can try being good at. Hopefully when the day comes, I have already figured out what works for me.

 

School
School

I once dreamt of going back to school someday and be a Doctor, a long-time dream of mine. Since I have not seen any medical courses in Abu Dhabi, I am settling for any new things I could study, even if it’s just a short course. I love learning and nothing interests my mind more than when it’s being fed new information.

 

BFFs & Mini Us
BFFs & Mini Us

I am 1/3 of our BFF Trio and having our own commitments in our own sections of the globe, coming together would require lots of advance (or surprise!) planning. I have included “Mini Us” because NO WAY will our kids grow up not knowing their awesomest Ninangs!! The dream is to keep the bond between us strong throughout our lifetime and beyond. I met Kaye in 1994 (Happy 20 Years!!! OMG!!!) and Bel in 1999, and we’re all here to stay!

 

Bucket List
Bucket List

What are long term dreams when you don’t find time for short ones? The dream is to tick off as much as I can off my bucket list throughout my lifetime.

 

So there you have it. My dreams and some of the things I am made of….

Collage

 

PS —

marraige

I dream of someday finding Mr. Right, settle down and have a family. I did not include it in my dream board because I feel that it’s a whole other universe at the moment. *wink wink*

 

*****

“When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where you’re from your dreams are valid
– Lupita Nyong’o

Officially Online

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We reached yet another milestone!

The BFF and I have been running our individual blogs for quite some years now. I’m residing in UAE with my family and she’s all the way in Singapore with her husband. It helps us catch up with each others’ life and keep in tune with what emotions the other feels on a certain something or just keep in touch in general. And lately, we have been having a great time creating the BFF Blog Series. It’s like we’re seated at a café with a cup or two and chatting the time away.

We’ve had our blogs just to ourselves until a few months ago, she was thinking of putting her blog out in public and about a week ago, she got me to join her with the idea. Why not right? It is quite exciting to know that there may be other people who can relate to the things we do.

So today, 01 June 2014 marks the launch of our blogs (12:00nn in UAE and 4:00pm in Singapore). We’ve registered them online in a couple of Pinoy blogs sites to start off then we’ll see how it will go from there.

We can now claim that after all the years of blogging, we are now Officially Online! : )

You can find the BFF’s interesting entries here.

Mostly Cheap and Affordable

For some reason most people perceive me as one who has a “more than an average” life. This is almost everyone’s first impression and I have no idea where they get it from. I keep thinking how I’ve first met these people which is through other friends. I love showing up in clothes I most comfortable in (that is literally jogging pants, shirt and slippers). I say hi, or sometimes nothing at all. I go about the usually chit chats, then go home after it all. So what on Earth is ever “sosyal” and “hard to reach there”??! Well it beats me. It’s really always been a puzzle where people “read” these perceptions.

I do know that I am utterly clueless when it comes to brands and find myself drawn into thrift shops than big brands with the word “Sale” on their windows. Alright, alright.. sale signs can be quite catchy. But place a thrift shop next to it, I dare not argue where to enter…first! hehe. In fact, I am more amazed to find a myself a pet ant with a ribbon rather than some of the pricey things. Same goes when it comes to my spending. Anything over 20Dhs make me think twice. Funny but true.

For this month’s BFF Series, we agreed on blogging about cheap stuff.

She is also one, as her husband puts it, is "like moth to a flame" when it comes to handicraft stores, sale signs, and thrift shops.
She is also one, as her husband puts it, is “like moth to a flame” when it comes to handicraft stores, sale signs, and thrift shops.

 

 

 

Let’s start where I purchase the goods. 02

1. Daiso – according to my research, Daiso is Japan’s no. 1 have-it-all, price-friendly spot. And according to me, it’s true!!! This shop first appeared in Abu Dhabi not so 5 to 7 years ago and I have been going to this place since. A girl can never have enough organizers, enough little “useful” things, and enough time to roam around in this place. When I go into Daiso, I can keep going round and round the store forever and even if I did not initially need anything in particular, I always end up buying something anyway. Their stuff usually sell AED 7.00 each but there are other items which are priced a little higher but still reasonable.

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One of the main items I go to Daiso for is this little thing. I call them Finger Aids. I normally have dry hands and sorting through pages and pages of paper can be a very big task simply because I need find non-gross ways to keep my fingers moist.

 

 

 

 

2. Tchibo – my version of slightly higher priced Daiso. I think it originated from Germany which made its way here in UAE. For quality, I also think they’re better than Daiso.

3. Saizen – these stores are found in the Philippines. Mostly Japan-made too. I had to include it in the blog for reference because if I’m not in UAE, then I’m in Philippines (with the once-in-a-lifetime exemption that I found myself wildly free in the streets of Singapore with the BFF).

4. DIVISORIA!!! – oh yes! This place deserves capital letters and three exclamation points! It’s a district in central Manila where people like me and the BFF would go gaga for! From the smallest to the largest things, for things for one part of the house to the other, for school, for work, for business, textiles, containers, food… the list goes on forever! This is the place to be. Everything is already cheap, you get them cheaper if you buy them in bulk, and you can even haggle! Warning though, dress down, don’t wear jewelry, wear comfy clothes (especially footwear), bring a trolley or big bag to put in your loot, keep your belongings as close to your body as possible and, if you have a car, park it in a nearly by mall for (a) security and (b) to avoid vendors from selling their things to you for a higher price. Along with the topic of Divisoria are the “Tiangge” which you’ll find in every corner or any place in the Philippines.

 

Clothes
Clothes

1. Splash – here in UAE, Splash is the place to go if you’re looking for trendy clothes of good quality without hurting your budget. They have here all sorts of clothing from casual to semi-formal wear.
2. Surplus – these stores may be found at every SM Supermalls in the Philippines. I really have to include this because it’s a place where most Western quality-rejected brands go but can barely tell what’s wrong with it. Hehe.

 

Souvenirs from home
Souvenirs from home

Little tip only. Though there are lots of really cheap places to go to in when it comes to getting souvenirs from the Philippines, the Kultura shop in every SM Department Store is very convenient. They have a wide variety of Philippine-made products at friendly prices. It saves one from the hassle of having to so many crowded places to get souvenir items.

 

Kids
Kids

No, I’m not buying children! Lol. Being an Aunt to two adorable kids, I needed to find some way to let them have a good time without having to worry about my budget. Kids can be very demanding with everything they see especially if you bring them into arcades and toy stores.

Their parents already bring them into those places so I love exposing them to other activities and the recent cause of our busy schedule me bringing them to parks and they can’t get enough of it. They loooove playing with sand and I let them. It’s good for them – bacteria and all. Hehe.

I just have to pack their extra shirts, tissue, baby wipes, towel, food and water and we’re all set to go! 🙂

 

Night out
Night out

There was a time when my cousin and I were mainstays at bars. Then we gradually stopped when we realized that we were not getting anything out of it and we also eventually became budget-conscious people. However, once in a while, the feeling does get to us still when we feel like we need to unwind. Hence this picture. Now why on earth would I put expensing bar night pictures in a blog about cheap stuff?!

 Behold!!

07

Haha! That evening we did have enough moolah to afford a night out but we were aware that we were going to put it into waste when we know that we just want to dance but, of course, we need to purchase drinks to not look like gate crashers. Then we figured to have a make-shift bar scene in our house kitchen house! Complete with propos – unopened beer cans. We cued a dance mix courtesy of YouTube, put our cellphone lights on and placed it in a plastic container with green cover, switched off the lights, locked the door, and then our problem was solved!

This was a one-time thing we did and I count is as one of the cheap and affordable ways to have fun.

 

Movies
Movies

If it is not produced by Marvel, Pixar, Disney, Harry Potter, or Lord of the Rings, then I’ll settle for a *cough*pirated*cough* version. I used to watch through Movie25 then my brother lovingly taught me how to go about Pirate Bay. Hehe

 

Hobbies
Hobbies

I think in hobbies, when you’re creative enough, you can use just about anything around you to create something. In my case, I’m in a baking phase.

This place called Lakeland is like the mother ship of all baking tools for those modern, fashionable, custom-made cakes that are now in the market. For someone who is just going to start, the prices of the accessories may come as a bit of a shock. A little 6-piece set of icing nozzles can costs a whopping 95 Dhs!

Then I found this place!

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Emirates Discount Market is like a local version of Divisoria. Meaning lots of things can be found in them too and may be bought in bulk but you’ll be going through the goods in clean, air-conditioned space. Hehe. A section of this place is dedicated to baking materials. Not as complete as Lakeland, but the basic things a baker would need. I’ve been wanting to venture into baking but the prices of the materials keep holding me back. That’s why I’m so happy to have found this alternative.

 

My recent spoils
My recent spoils

1. Special clothes and lingerie nets – from Daiso for Dhs 7.00 each.
2. Plastic bag sealer – got this from Daiso for just Dhs 7.00 plus the cost of 2 AA batteries. I love buying little things when I come across them especially when I see that they may be useful sometime later. And this is one of them. Just a couple days old in my possession.
3. Table-mate II – I saw this product on TV few years ago and though that it would be convenient for someone who’s rarely away from their laptop. My aunt spotted this in Carrefour few weeks ago and told me about and I got for AED 39.00. I do believe it’s a good price. It’s a cool product plus purchasing it on TV would cost me a little more plus shipping. I have no idea what’s the deal with Table-mate I.

 

Borgsjö Desk
Borgsjö Desk : Don’t ask me about how the word reads. I don’t know. Lol.

I have always wanted a study table (“desk” daw kasi adult na). Feeling busy kasi ako lagi. If I’m not typing, I’ll be writing, or trying to glue things together.

There is a part of Ikea stores called “As Is” which means then stuff you find in there are slightly damaged goods or because it was a display piece, something is slightly chipped, a set may be missing a piece, etc. and you buy then As Is (dents and all). In the case of this desk, it was slightly scratched in the corner. Remember when I mentioned that anything above 20 Dhs make me think twice? I learned from my aunt that if the prices are cut 50% and lower, then grab it!

I earlier saw a display piece in the desk section but it seemed more like a table for AED 110.00. When in Ikea, a 110-dirham table is a good price. But I just went around it and kept on walking thinking that looked expensive for a table. Then I found myself in the As Is section which is located just before the checkout counters. I was looking for a good desk lamp then I saw this! Now THAT’s a desk! I tried to stay with it a while, encouraging and discouraging myself why I should or should not purchase it. Checked the measurement which seemed like it would fit at the foot of my bed, a perfect for place it. The height was ok. The feel was ok. Then I looked at the price tag. It was originally sold at AED 197.50 and because of the barely seen scratch, they were selling it AED 97.50 only! O-M-G! With the wisdom of my budget system, my aunt, and my dream for a desk, I bought it. And now I’m happy. I set it up in my section of the room which I share with our staff and I was right. It fit perfectly. Later did I realize that it matched the wood color of my closet. Now I’m happier.

*Actual picture to follow because my room is still a total wreck!

So there you have it.

Cheap things does not mean you’re stingy but rather know the value of your hard-earned money. I guess once in a while, high-end brands are ok for as long as it’s within the budget limit. After all, we are working to have better and comfortable lives. In this day’s fast-paced lifestyle with everything from rent, to food, to gas rising except our salary (lol) it’s always better to be more practical.

For more even better tips, learn from the expert on thrift shops and money management 🙂 Click the BFF’s blog here.

Songs in My Phone

It is said that music always tells someone's story. I find it true. In more than one occasion, I was able to either relate my own experiences and emotions to a song. And in a lot of times, I use songs to express feelings which I cannot.
It is said that music always tells someone’s story. I find it true. In more than one occasion, I was able to either relate my own experiences and emotions to a song. And in a lot of times, I use songs to express feelings which I cannot.

 

I thought it was going to be quite easy. Pfft! Just a bunch of songs… I love songs… This is a piece of cake! But I honestly find it quite challenging now. Haha! Music was meant to be listened to whether it is being reviewed or blogged or what not. With the restriction of time and space, I will do my best to not make this entry not look too messy. I am wishing right now that WordPress has an “Insert Table” feature.

I have a total of about 60+ songs downloaded in my phone at the moment and I have caterogized them into 8 to make it easier to explain. I believe the mechanics were to choose 10 favorites songs, pick out a favorite line, and explain. Demanding lang?!! While writing this, the list have already been prepared below so as I go through them, I will try to put my comments along the way.

Let’s start this off…

 

Feel-good Playlist
(These are the types of songs that although they may have good lyrics, I listen to them more because of the melody.)

Fast Car (Tracy Chapman)
Islands in the Stream (Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers)
Happy (Pharell)

Someday We’ll Know (Mandy Moore)
♫ So many questions, I need an answer…Two years later you’re still on my mind…Is true love just once in a lifetime? I’m speeding my the place that I met you for the 107th time tonight…Someday we’ll know if love can move a mountain…someday we’ll know why I wasn’t meant for you. ♪

Seasons of Love (Rent)
This makes me smile. A couple of years ago, the BFF and I said this was our birthday song for ourselves 🙂

Akala Mo (Aiza Seguerra)
 ♫ Akala mo hindi ko nakita na maligaya ka pag ako ay masaya… Akala mo hindi ko naisip na kasama ako sa inyong panaginip…Bawat sabihin ko alam ko nakinig ka…Akala mo siguro hindi ko nakita…Akala mo hindi ko pansin, akala mo hindi ko alam…Mahal mo nga ako kahit hindi mo man sabihin, akala mo hindi ko napsin…Akala mo ganon lang yon, alam ko yon kahit noon…Akala mo hindi ko napansin… ♪
Potassium mode this song! Promise! This is a recent additional to my playlist. And very significant too! Having a somewhat long-time “love interest but it just never got there until eventually it just can’t happen anymore” then you later on find out from him with his own mouth that it was should have-could have moment for him too about you – but no! Haaayyy…. this is my song for it… haaaayyy ulit.

Crazy Love (Mindy Gledhill)
I love this because at one point the BFF told me I was this. Simply because of the lyrics “Nobody knows I am a secret spy.” Lol! It puts emphasis and compliment to my “skill” of stalking people! Looool!

Dati (Sam Conception)
♫ Ikaw ang kasama buhat noon, ikaw ang pangarap hanggang ngayon…Di ba’t ikaw nga yung reyna at ako ang yong hari…Ako yong princesa sagip mo palagi…Ngunit ngayon’y marami nang nabago’t nangyari…Hindi ang pag tingin, na gaya parin ng dati.♪
I first heard this song while driving and I found it really cute and endearing. There’s just nothing like the first love – all innocent and so many funny memories and inside jokes to share.

Nothing’s Gomna Stop Us Now (Starship)
♫ Let them say we’re crazy I don’t care about that. Put your hand in my hand, baby, don’t ever look back. Let the world around us just fall apart, baby, we can make it if we’re heart to heart. And we can build this dream together, standing strong forever, nothing’s gonna stop us now. And if this world runs out of lovers, we’ll still have each other, nothings gonna stop us now. I’m so glad I found you, I’m not gonna loose you, whatever it takes I will stay here with you. Take you to the good times, see you to the bad times. Whatever it takes is what I’m gonna do. Let them say we’re crazy, what do they know? Put your arms around me, baby, don’t ever let go! ♪
I believe that love is supposed to be like this. Fun and worth going against the world for.

 

Strong-Strongan Playlist
(As the category suggest, for me, I interpret these songs as songs of survival especially that of an unfortunate heartache. Then after all that hell, you just sit back and watch those people screw up on their own. hehe.)

You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me (Cher)
Set Fire to the Rain (Adele)

Best Thing I Never Had (Beyonce)
♫ What goes around comes back around…There was a time I thought that you did everything right. No lies, no wrongs, I must have been out of my mind. So when I think of the times that I almost loved you, you showed your a$$ and I saw the real you. Thank God you blew it, thank God I dodged the bullet. I’m so over you so baby good lookin’ out. I wanted you back, I’m so through with that. Honestly you turned out to be the best thing I never had… So sad you’re hurt, boohoo, did you expect me to care? You don’t deserve my tears. I guess that’s why they ain’t there…. I bet it sucks to be you right now! I know you want me back, it’s time to face the fact that I’m one that’s got away. Lord knows that it will take another place, another time, another world, another life, thank God I found the good in goodbye ♪

Irreplaceable (Beyonce)
Keep talking that mess that’s fine. But could you walk and talk at the same time… You must not know about me.. I can have another you in a minute, matter of fact he’ll be here in a minute. Don’t you ever for a second get to thinking you’re irreplaceable ♪

Black Heart (Stooshe)
Daddy, I’ve fallen for a monster…he’s got a black heart! ♪

Curse Me Good (The Heavy)
If you’re looking for a fight, well I’m a war machine… And if you wanna lie about something, then make it something worth lying for. And if you need to curse my name, curse me good! Don’t you smile at my face, and spit on my back. Do you kiss your mother with mouth like that? ♪
I love this song most. So much attitude in it. Haha. I can imagine it being a girl’s song, and my gawd! He better hide somewhere he can never be found! Lol!

Skyscraper (Demi Lovato)
You can take everything I have, you can break everything I am, like I’m made of glass, like I’m made of paper, go on and try to tear me down, I will be rising from the ground, like a skyscraper… All my windows still are broken but I’m standing on my feet.. Go run, run, run, I’m gonna stay right here, watch you disappear… It’s a long wat down, but I am closer to the clouds up here ♪

Karma (Alicia Keys)
Weren’t you the one who said that you don’t want me anymore. And how you need your space and give the keys back to your door. And how I cried and tried and tried to make you stay with me. And still you said your love was gone and that I had to leave… And when you came home you’d always have some sorry excuse. Half explaining to me like I’m just some kind of a fool… What goes around comes around, what goes up must come down. Now who’s cryin’, desirin’ to come back to me.. It’s called Karma baby ♪

Over You (Daughtry)
Now that it’s all said and done, I can’t believe you were the one, to build me up and tear me down like an old abandoned house. What you said when you left, just left me cold and out of breath, I felt if I was in way too deep, guess I let you get the best of me. Well, I never saw it coming, I should’ve started running a long, long time ago… You took a hammer to these walls, dragged the memories down the hall. Packed your bags and walked away, there was nothing I could say. And when you slammed the front door shut, a lot of others opened up. So did my eyes so I could see that you never were the best for me…And I never thought I’d doubt you, I’m better off without you more than you, more than you know. I’m slowly getting closure, I guess it’s really over, I’m finally getting better. And now I’m picking up the pieces, spending all of these years putting my heart back together. ‘Cause the day I thought I’d never get through, I got over you. ♪

 

Moving On Playlist

Today My Life Begins (Bruno Mars)
I’ve been working hard so long… My fragile heart’s been done so wrong. I wondered if I’d ever heal again… I’m learning now to leave it in the past and try to forget… Yesterday has come and go and I’ve learned how to leave it where it is… I will break these chains that bind me, happiness will find me, leave the past behind me. Today my life begins… A whole new world is waiting it’s mine for the taking, I know I can make it… ♪

Stitches and Burns (Fra Lippo Lippi)
People say that I’m a fool well I don’t know. At least I found out what it takes to be strong… Now I don’t want to see you anymore. Don’t want to be the one to play your game. Not even if you smile, your sweetest smile. Not even if you beg me, Darling, please… Seems like everything must come to an end… Time after time, nothing that I can do. Day after day, leaving the past behind. Coming to terms with stitches and burns and learning to fly again ♪

Don’t Look Back (She & Him)
Don’t look back all you’ll ever get is the dust from the steps before… ♪

Everybody Plays the Fool (The Main Ingredient)
Before you do anything rash, dig this… Everybody plays the fool sometime. There’s no exception to the rule .Listen, baby, it may be factual, may be cruel. I ain’t lyin’, everybody plays the fool? Falling in love is such an easy thing to do and there’s no guarantee that the one you love is gonna love you… Lovin’ eyes they cannot see a certain person could never be. Love runs deeper than any ocean. You can cloud your mind with emotion. How can you help it when the music starts to play and your ability to reason is swept away. Heaven on earth is all you see. You’re out of touch with reality and now you cry but when you do, next time around someone cries for you… ♪
I love this one because, as I was advised once, “the first step to moving on is acknowledging your own mistakes too and accepting the fact that you let yourself be played as the fool.

 

Ampalaya Playlist
(Kainlangan pa bang i-memorize to?)

Why (Avril Lavinge)
It’s not supposed to hurt this way… ♪

Jar of Hearts (Christina Perri)
No I can’t take one more step towards you coz all that’s waiting is regret… You’ve lost the love I loved the most… I hear you’re asking all around if I am anywhere to be found… I wish I had missed the first time that we kissed but you broke all your promises. And now you’re back you don’t get to get me back… ♪

Insensitive (Jann Arden)
How do you block the sound of a voice you’d know anywhere?… I really should have known by the time you drove me home, by the vagueness in your eyes, your casual goodbyes, by the chill in your embrace, the expression on your face… How do you teach your heart from trying to fall in love again? I’m one of the closen few who went ahead and fell for you… Maybe you might have some advisee to give on how to be Insensitive. ♪

Too Late (Carole King)
One of us is changing or maybe we just stopped trying… It used to be so easy living here with you. You were light and breezy and I knew just what to do. Now you look so unhappy and I feel like a fool… But it’s too late, baby, now it’s too late. You know we really did try to make it. Something inside has died and I can’t hide it, no, I just can’t fake it… ♪

Just a Dream (Cover by Sam Tsui & Christina Grimmie)
It was only just a dream… ♪

Just Like a Pill (Pink)
You’re just like a pill. Instead of making me better, you’re making me ill… ♪

Breakeven (Maddi Jane)
What am I gonna do when the best part of me was always you? What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up and you’re ok? I’m falling to pieces…. When a heart breaks no it don’t break even… ♪

Need You Now (Lady Antebellum)
Picture perfect memory scattered all around the floor… And I’d rather hurt than feel nothing at all… And I wonder if I ever cross your mind, for me it happens all time…. ♪

 

Danceable Playtist

You Make Me Wanna (Unknown)
U Got It Bad (Usher)
Too Close (Next)
Rap Das Armas (Cidinho & Doca)
Blurred Lines (Robin Thicke)
Love Sex and Magic (Justin Timberlake & Ciara)

Danza Kuduro (Don Omar)
Hmmmm….. I don’t know squat what this song is saying pero may killing factor this song. Never in my lifetime did I ever think that I’d be associating such a song to a “heart feeling.” Long story short, I remember someone with this song.

 

Rocker Chick
 (I have always been one. The rocker inside me got revived when I got addicted to a TV series called “Supernatural”. A tale of two brothers hunting down unworldly creatures. Definitely rock-soundtrack material.)

Carry On My Wayward Song (Kansas)
Halik (Kamikazee)
Heat of the Moment (Asia)
Highway to Hell (AC/DC)

 

Not that I’m hoping for anything, trip lang mag-emote

I’m Never Gonna Give You Up (Frank Stallone & Cynthia Rhodes)
I’m Going Home (Chris Daughtry)
Ordinary People (John Legend)

After All (Peter Cetera)
After all the stops and starts, we keep coming back to these two hearts… And this is meant to be, forever you and me… After all. ♪

When I Was Your Man (Bruno Mars)
When I Was Your Man (Cover by Madilyn Bailey)
When my friends talk about you all it does is just tear me down. Cause my heart breaks a little when I hear your name… ♪
There are a couple of songs in my playlist with few variations. It’s sometimes because the song is originally sang by a guy and maybe at someone I might have related to it, so I look for female versions.

Try Sleeping with a Broken Heart (Alicia Keys)
Have you ever tried sleeping with a broken heart? Then you can try sleeping in my bed.. ♪
Sometimes we do not understand how hard some situations are unless we experience them ourselves. I thought this song was one of those emote songs telling you how much a heartbreak feels, but to my understanding, it’s daring the listener, not to get their heart broken, but “let’s see if you can make it? Cause you’ve got no idea how much I’m dealing with right now.”

The Famous Final Scene (Bob Seger)
And how you tried to make it work, did you really think it could?  How you tried to make it last, did you really think it would? Like a guest who stayed too long, now it’s finally time to leave… Take it calmly and serene, it’s the famous final scene. It’s been coming on so long, you were just the last to know. It’s been a long time since you’ve smiled…  Now the stage has all been set and the nights are growing cold. Soon the winter will be here and there’s no one warm to hold. Now the lines have all been read and you knew them all by heart. Now you move toward the door, here it comes the hardest part. Try the handle of the road, feeling different feeling strange. This can never be arranged as the light fades from the screen. From the famous final scene. ♪
Like I said, Supernatural is an awesome TV series incorporated with rock soundtracks because of the “manly” nature of it’s concept. But what if there came a time when the main action hero went through one of the worst things like loosing someone dear? Girl mode would immediately think Celine Dion, Beyoncé. But this, nooooo. Even the “emote” track needed to be rock ballad! hehe. Loved the touch of the song during that scene.
Other than that, since I have a fascination for stage performances, how they related a sad experience to a stage setting made me even more crazy for the song! : )


Somebody That I Used to Know (Gotye)
Somebody That I Used to Know (Cover by Madilyn Bailey & Jake Coco)
Somebody That I Used to Know (Cover by Ingrid Michaelson)
Now and then I think of when we were together, like when you said you felt so happy you could die. Told myself that you were right for me but felt so lonely in your company. But that was love and it’s an ache I still remember… Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over but had me believing it was always something that I’d done. But I don’t wanna live that way, reading into every word you say, you said that you could let it go and I wouldn’t catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know ♪

Piano in the Dark (Nina)
Just as I walk through the door, I can feel your emotion. It’s pullin’ me back to love you… I know I’m caught up in the middle, I cry just a little when I think of letting go. I’m not caught up in the middle I cry just a little when I think of letting go ♪
Oh THAT feeling that you think you’re okey. Then all of a sudden, you remember something and you’re caught by surprise. Then it’s in that moment that you feel that little pinch somewhere inside that makes you just want to forget everything and run back but you know it’s not right but you feel like you want to, then you call for help but you think you’ll follow your own heart anyway. Then it’s you try to distract yourself but that next thing you’re doing reminds you again, you argue with yourself and you know you just have to stop it. But then again, you “cry just a little when you think of letting go”, then you’re back to square one. It’s vicious cycle! Whew! Sakit sa bangs!

You Were Meant for Me (Jewel)
Dreams last so long even after you’re gone… ♪
Ahhh… this one. When at one point you’ve planned so far ahead and can’t wait for your forever to start, then everything just stops. As Toni Gonzaga says, “How do I unlove you?”

Dreaming with a Broken Heart (John Mayer)
When you’re dreaming with a broken heart, the waking up is the hardest part. ♪

Better in Time (Leona Lewis)
It’s gonna hurt when it heals too… It will get better in time… No matter how hard it is, I’ll be fine without you! ♪

Love Takes Time (Mariah Carey)
Love takes time to heal when you’re hurting so much ♪

Just Give Me a Reason (Pink ft. Nate)
Just a second we’re not broken, just bent… And we can learn to love again… ♪

 

Others

You and I (Lady Gaga)
Almost There (Princess and the Frog – Disney)
Do You Want to Build a Snowman? (Frozen – Disney)
For the First Time in Forever (Frozen – Disney)
For the First Time in Forever (Reprise) (Frozen – Disney)
Let it Go (Frozen – Disney)
Love is an Open Door (Frozen – Disney)

 

There are may songs which I listen to simply because I like a certain part of it’s tune, it’s lyrics, then I hit the “Next” button on my playlist.

Well, there it goes. As much songs that I know, these are so far the only ones I have in my phone (thank God!). I know it the lyrics is saying a lot. But for now, it’s what’s keeping my sane in my long bus rides to and from work. Kaya wag nang umapila!! ^__^

 Of the many songs I relate to, this is for now one that sings my current stage. I really saved it for last. Enjoy.

*****

 

I mentioned in my previous blog that nothing can make us remember so much like scent does because scents, we may come across it briefly, but it, and all the emotions that comes along with it, gets encoded right into the core of our memories, locked away and silent until it gets unleashed again. And Music, I believe is next other channel that do the same amount of damage (in a good or bad way).
I mentioned in my previous blog that nothing can make us remember so much like scent does because scents, we may come across it briefly, but it, and all the emotions that comes along with it, gets encoded right into the core of our memories, locked away and silent until it gets unleashed again. And Music, I believe is next other channel that do the same amount of damage (in a good or bad way).

 

The BFF’s entry is here.