Monday, December 26, 2005

Merry Christmas all!

Finally! A much needed rest after a long day. Christmas day went by so fast! It was fun and tiring. As usual, my brothers and their families were here, as well as aunts, uncles, lolo and lola. Diego at his age has finally concluded that Christmas is the best time of the year because of the gifts he received. "Can I open now, huh? can i?" (well, in tagalog, of course lol) He would take ownership of the other gifts under the tree and really wail the moment he knew it's not for him. Andee, on the other hand, has taken serious attention and took ownership of the microphone of the rented videoke machine, (my mom and brother rented out this cabinet-sized videoke machine, the likes you see at carinderias or beer houses. I vowed to myself to get a Magic Sing pronto!) This is the first christmas without their dad, though he called up Christmas Eve to greet them, well, that's good enough for me. Pictures will be posted asap!

I would be unable to post as regularly as I would because I will be starting work today, This evening actually.(yes, new job at last). So for my newly found friends and fellow bloggers whom I spent those 2 1/2 months of unemployed moments, thank you, thank you for keeping me company. I t was worth it. Have a merry christmas and enjoy the rest of the year!!!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

What's 'up'?

"Mama, a-ta-at" ("Mama, tumataas") ("Mama, it's up again")

Diego has been saying this (or experiencing this, rather) almost everyday, and sometimes 2-3 times a day! He even has this habit of getting it out and showing it to me. The first time he mentioned this was good for laughs, but now though sometimes I find it amusing, I'm a bit..what? concerned perhaps? I asked my mom about it and she couldn't remember any of my 3 brothers experiencing this when they were young (unless they didn't really mention it). I asked some of my friends. Though some say that it's as normal as can be, well, what causes it? I mean, is it the cold weather? Did he see something on tv? What? What?

My male friends would just laugh it off saying that I should be calm and be glad that my 3-year old is 100% hombre! Oh really??!?!! Geeeezzz! Men.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

NEVER sing in the shower.

Philippine actress Eula Valdez has announced on Kris Aquino's Game Ka Na Ba that her new project is a musical comedy that is scheduled next year at the CCP.

For those 'character-specific' enthusiasts who've been reading my posts, you'll somehow get so excited and have mixed emotions to know what project she's talking about. :-)

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Pride and joy

I took Andee and Diego to Riverbanks Mall to have Andee's picture taken as part of the requirements needed for her to take the admission test to St. Scholastica's Academy here in Marikina for the 2nd grade.
I decided to have their picture taken together as well, as Andee has kept pleading for a good picture that she can put in her new wallet (given to her by a classmate during their christmas party), and something to send to their grand-lola and other relatives.

How they've grown! Andee has still been as pretty and photogenic as she is and Diego has finally learned how to 'smile'.. since he usually just stares at the camera or makes funny faces. Next time I'll include myself in! :-)

So I'm sharing with you my pride and joy.. Andee at 7 and Diego at 3 years old.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

T'was Saturday

Great finds
Yesterday, My longtime, all-time friend, Gel, and I, together with her mom, went to Quiapo. Our main agenda was to finally purchase Gel's dream of a camera-- a Canon 520 something-something. Gel, a photography enthusiast, has finally decided to try-out digital cameras, but not until Gel's mom had led us through Avenida's labyrinth of alleys and christmas tiangges to discover yet what Gel and I thought was a frugal shopper's haven! As we walked through Avenida that morning, glancing at the small stores that had opened business for the day, and the sidewalk vendors 'proudly' showing off their wares, we saw, among others--- home-made herbal concoctions, cellphone cases, platic toys, gift wrappers and boxes, christmas ornaments, shoes, triple xxx vcd's, and to much our surprise, 'adult' toys.

Gel's mom suddenly turned left in an alley which led to, what we describe was like a hideout for gangsters, etc. We went up a flight of stairs and reaching the landing, we were in a warehouse-like building that housed smaller stalls where hundreds of Made-in-China sunglasses, watches, and Christmas decors were sold at wholesale prices. The usual P150.00 watches found in tiangges inside the malls fetch as low as P100.00 for single purchase, or as low as P80.00 for a minimum of 6pcs. The P50.00 sunglasses in tiangges were as low as P20.00-P30.00 here! Those cute, cute colorful earrings in tianggges that cost P50.00 a pair, we 'OMG!' discovered, cost P50.00 - P80.00 for a BOX OF 8 PAIRS!!!! As much as we would like to browse around forever and gawk at the prices, we had to purchase Gel's camera and go. We definitely would return with more friends in tow! We took the LRT and after 35 minutes (from Recto to Marikina) I was home.

On life
I arrived at around 2:30 pm and had to rest a little and get ready. I was to be picked up at 5:00pm by a high school buddy, Grace, to attend the wake of the husband of Celynne, one of our classmates in St. Scho. When we arrived at St. Paul's Church in SSS Village, there were 3 more of our high school batch who were there. There was an 'updated' exchange of hello's and how are you's since we last saw each other in Feb 2005 during our 20th year homecoming. How fast time flies!

It seemed only yesterday when we got used to hearing batch mates getting married and having babies. But know it feels different when we talk about death, especially with people our age. How ironic it is when we say that we are 'old' at age 37 when we kid about living, yet very young at age 37 when we talk about death? Now it made me think, how much of my life did I make the most of? At what point do I say that I've finally done what I'm here for, therefore be ready to go? Can I be proud with my achievements, failures, joys and heartaches that made me what I am now-- seemingly alone? Uncontent? As I look at the abundance of flowers at the wake given by friends and family, would I be remembered like this as well?

About this time, Celynne arrived with her two little boys, aged 8 and 2, who looked exactly like their dad. Seeing the two tykes go straight to their dad's casket brought tears to my eyes (actually bringing tears to my eyes right now as I write this). What will become of Andee and Diego? In this fit of uncalled for paranoia, life maybe too long or too short, depending on which side you see it... the problematic side, or the hope side. Now I have to decide which side I should be in.

Good 'ol friends
From the wake, Grace and I took to road to White Plains to attend the batch's Christmas party. It took a while before our other high school classmates arrived and we really had a great time. During one of the lull moments, discussion became a little on the serious side. We were solving each other's problems, giving advice, etc. My ordeal was known in my batch by most and they were really up to it. Tess, who came in from Harry Potter's Surrey for the holidays, is a practising family and divorse lawyer there. She used to handle annulment cases here before she left for UK. It was quite uneasy listening to her, and 2 more of my friends, whose parents also handle cases like this.

With all honesty, it had always been an option for me to file for legal separation, but NOT for annulment. With any mental, physical or whatever torture the hubby has done to me, I don't have the balls to go on and do the right thing. Maybe because of the kids, or pity,.. or love (alright, anyone can smack me in the head now). But after last night, after I came home at 3am this morning, I've been thinking the whole day.

Talk about great finds, life, death, love, annulment.
Yesterday was a day full of lessons in life. The trip to Quiapo, is a trip knowing that beautiful things can be found if you looked hard enough and be resourceful. Of life and death at the wake, is an answer to probably what I was looking for. Maybe it was a realization (and it took you THIS long. Reia?!?!) about was life really is. I don't have to pity myself or sulk or think that I might never stand up and recover once again. I don't have to think of the times when I was so happy about life that I am stuck to thinking what should 'should-still-be'. Yes, maybe I do still love Nikki, but I have to love myself. Why should he matter when I have to fix myself up first? And for all my friends' suggestion and support last night, or rather, early this morning, I've thought about it. Hard and good. For all this cowardly time I've been stuck and had been thinking of going on to the next level for the longest time but ever really doing what should be right. I wanted to do it but thinking about the kids makes it so painful. I've hurt other meaningful people too in the process.

The decision wasn't easy. They say it will be a long gruelling process. It would involve much emotion and hurt. But it would finally set me free.

I tucked 3 year old Diego to sleep, I stroked his hair, planted a kiss.
"Good night, baby"
"Good night"
"I love you, baby"
"Lab you, mama. Lab ko rin papa" (Love you, mama. I also love papa)

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Friday, December 16, 2005

Love that egg!

After that tremendous pizza blow-out, I thought I had enough. Until I, uh, stumbled across this, ummm ... song. It was so hilarious. And yeah, weird. That's when I knew. I really HAD enough!

Well, maybe except for some tokneneng please (deep fried, orange-battered, boiled quail eggs with spicy vinegar dip!) Yummy!

Eggs, anyone?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Pizza anyone?

My brother Earl came over to visit this afternoon and offered to treat us for merienda (afternoon snack). There are all sorts of delivery flyers held up by refrigerator magnets (mostly kitty magnets and one garbage bag-shaped one from Marikina Mayor MCF on proper garbage disposal) on our Kelvinator and were we surprised. Attached to our refrigerator door are the following delivery fliers:

Pizza Hut,
Greenwich Pizza,
Shakeys Pizza,
Pizza Smile, and
Yellow Cab Pizza!!!!!! What the.....!?!?!

What's this?!? No Jolibee or McDonald's? Where is KFC or Popeye's or Chowking?!?!
Well, we ended up with Greenwich's Sari-Sari Square Pizza and requested to include their new 'sisig' topping (which really didn't even come close to what the pizza looked like in their commercial).

Funny thing, really. And weird. Well, what's on your refrigerator door?

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Name Game2

My previous post here dealt with where I got my name, as well as Andee's and Diego's. It's so interesting to note how one person may have a dozen of names up his sleeve! Let me pull up my sleeve for a change...

If you call me by my nickname, Yang, then you could be one of my closest friends or anyone I really feel comfortable with. You could be my classmate in grade school, high school or college. A bit on the informal side. Some with even joke around "What would you be called when you grow old? Lola Yang?" Lola is tagalog for 'grandmother'.

If you call me Yangtze, YangSi or Yang-si-doodle, then you could only be a classmate in Western Civilization during college, or either Nannette, Gel, or Bambie, three of my closest friends.

If you know me as Yang Vergara, then you could be familiar with charcoal and/or oil pastel art works in college or at the City Gallery in Rizal Park where we frequently hold group exhibits. I use this name in my art. Now married, it's hyphenated with my married name.

If you call me Mangyan (an indigenous tribe here in the Philippines), then you could only be my cousin, Angge (Angela) whom my kids call Tiangge (actually means 'store' or 'market' in either tagalog or spanish), derived from 'tita' (aunt) and Angge. Mangyan was derived from 'manang' a name given as respect to an older sister or female, and of course, Yang, my nickname.

You are a younger (than me) member of the family (mother's side) if you call me Manang. You call me Ate, Atsi or Ache-che-- if you are any of my brothers. And Mama, of course, only by Andee and Diego.

If you call me Reia (ree-yah), then you could be anyone I've met at work, or as an acquaintance-- in a more formal setting. If you still call me Reia as in "rheya", then hello?!?...there must be something wrong or you just wanted to have it your way or you can't really pronounce the 'long eeeeee' well...because I would've corrected you already.

If it's Ma'am Reia, then you could be any of my former staff at Splash Island, Warner Bros. or Marks & Spencer. if it's Miss Reia or Miss Yang, then you could be any of my co-supervisors from my past jobs.

If you call me Paulina (my second name) then you can only be Lee Aurelo who right now is 'at large' (hey girlfriend..where are you?!?), or anybody who teased me for having this, during our time, name suited only for lolas!

If you called me Loving, then you could only be my ex of 12 years (sniff!), before I met the person who eventually i married and called me Babe (yes, the pig..LOL), Bab, Beh, or Bah-beh-- and which marriage ended up in a pig sty..

If you call me Miss Beautiful or Miss Sexy, then you could only be my suking tricycle driver whom I knew since grade school. Or that Manang selling vegetables in our local market.

If you call me Ms. Mutya, you are one of those who remembered, supported and trained me in a, well, embarrasing-not-something-I-would-get-myself-into moment of my life in 1990. Thanks!

And lastly, if you call me Hey!, Psst!, Hoy!, Girl!, Lola! then you could be any of my barkada, or my YM chatmates, or you're just trying to be cute, or worse, you don't know my name! Oh well, choose from any of the above, or make up your own LOL as long as you tell me why! So there goes my sleeves! In the meantime, a sufficient and very sincere and friendly "Hi there!" will do!

P.S. As I find this entry to be amusing on my part, I am therefore tagging all my scratches as well as interested readers!!!! Let me know so I can visit you!

Monday, December 12, 2005

8th year

Today is my 8th year wedding anniversary... and same as the past 3 years, it would go on like any other ordinary day without any greetings or i love you's.

No one remembers.
Not even...

This would be another year without the warmth you get accustomed to when you sleep at night, or the mornings when you wake up with a loving peck and hug. Or the times when laughter is shared by mere rekindling what has been during the earlier years.

So, today is my 8th year wedding anniversary... and same as the past 3 years, it would go on like it did .... without any thrills or frills, or surprises. No phonecalls, or emails. This would be another year with the warmth of the smiles of Andee and Diego, the comfort of their hugs and kisses, and the laughter shared with the funny antics they do.

Life would go on, yes ? Because no one remembers.
Well, maybe, just me.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Memoirs of a Geisha

What I thought would be another uneventful and boring day at home turned out quite well when my cousin, Angge, let me borrow her book, Memoirs of a Geisha. I spent the whole afternoon reading the book and guess what? I finished it!!!! I've never really done this--reading AND finishing a book, never putting it down (well of course disregard trips to the little girl's room and preparing lunch and dinner)--- since Harry Potter.

I am not really a bookworm, though I encourage my kids to read books (Andee and Diego has a room full of books, but has toys that would fit in one big box altogether, as compared to their cousin whose room is half-filled with toys! ) One of my dreams is actually having a small library where the kids could sit down and read or, in Diego's case, browse through pictures of animals and dinosaurs. Aside from the books their we, their grandma, Tita Angge and others give as gifts, they REALLY enjoyed (thank goodness!!!) World Book's Childcraft which I gave Andee as a kinder graduation gift. Well, going back to Geisha...

I love reading simple, well written books where the author opens my mind and brings me 'inside' and experience what I am reading. Memoirs of a Geisha reminds me of The Good Earth, by Pearl S. Buck , one of the rare books I enjoyed. Beautiful!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Blog winners!

Congratulations to the winning blogs of the recently concluded Philippine Blog Awards! Wow, great work, I may say! :-)


I was glad that My Scratch Pad was a part of this, even though the blog's just months old! As what the site says, "see you all again next year!" Hmm... got to gear up for that! LOL!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

That Christmassy-feeling

Oh it is Christmas! This photo is one of several beautiful shots taken by Summer. She always seem to capture the mood, be it with flowers, beaches, or other themes. Watch out for the opening of her online photo gallery!

I used to be sooo excited about Christmas! As a kid I always look forward to opening gifts and having relatives come over for Christmas lunch. Now as an adult and a parent, Christmas also means endless laughter from the children who have now taken our place, our kids who by their mere presence can lift our spirits up!

"'s the most wonderful time of the year.." as so the song goes. But why do I feel so sad....?

Saturday, December 03, 2005

My life in blog

My Scratch Pad is 4 months old today!

(It should've been 6 months but I could'nt count the 1st 2 months with 1 entry each!) Oh well! So far my venture into this blog addiction served me well. It's the best therapy in town. From day one that I decided to open myself up to the WWW, I was able to improve my writing, be a lot more creative, discover new things and most of all, made new friends here and abroad!

  • Interesting to note are the stats I received to date: 1742 visitors from 12 countries. Most number of unique visitors was 57 on Sept 6th, while I average 5 returning visits everyday. The most popular blog entry is my unframed botanical peacock story, and as much as interesting keywords are concerned, this blog was found by searching "fixing a broken waterglobe" (huh?!?!) Thank you all!

I take personal pride in helping friends (or groups) put up blogs, like Snap Shots, B.U.D.O.N.G., and La Kulasa. I have the pleasure of blogging for a cause for Fabulous Filipinas and just recently, this evening actually, a pleasant surprise!..... I saw that this blog made it as one of the 52 finalists at the 2005 Philippine Blog Awards (out of 667 nominated blog sites). :-) Nice! that's good enough for me!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Tummy question

I came across this link through Kars, who came across it through Owen, who in turn received it via email. It is a link to a German children's book that could answer that famous question "How did I get inside your tummy, mom?" I remembered commenting on Tired Tunia's post on how she successfully answer her kid's who-what-why-where questions with grace and wit!, but never really gotten to answer THE famous question.

It came to me as a shock, really, when I visited the site. I myself am not sure whether I would give this book to my kids, or let alone, let them see it. I am not sure what age level this book is intended for, but based on the drawings, you decide.

Maybe I'm still old school. Maybe times are different now. Or maybe I foresee more questions to come that I might not be ready to answer..! What do you think?

Here's the link:

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Seeing double

A friend emailed me this photo.

Cats, like people, have their own unique faces, personalities and what not. But as I saw this photo, I really had to do a double-take because this cute feline does look very much like Tygra! Well, disregard the similarities in coat pattern, the way this cat concentrates on getting to the shower reminds me on how Tygra looked while he was curious about a hanging leaf in one of our garden plants. The way this cat flexes its body for balance reminds me of how Tygra manages to do the same when he almost fell from our majhong table. And, the facial features of this cat IS unmistakably Tygra's!

There were instances when I would meet people or acquaintances who would look like people I know. There would be similarities in facial features, habits, etc. Funny now when you think about it, do felines mistake other cats too, to those they know? Hmmm......

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


There are times when I wish to disappear to a place where there is peace, understanding and hope. But then again, it'll only turn out that I am running away....... and the place I've dreamt of is not where it seem it would be... because that place is just here after all... and it is I who has lost faith in Him.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Splat on Black

Cafepress has introduced (at last!) black shirts! There had been tremendous requests and inquiries for designs on black shirts. As far as my stores are concerned, the only designs that are 'black-shirt-ready' are the warhol cats and a few of the cats-up-close collection.

I tried making designs for the other store, Kulay, but only managed to come up with these simple ones: Shapes and Splats! which will be housed, for the meantime, at JustCats.

If you know of a cat-person who would appreciate these as gifts, got more cat designs by the way, by all means...purchase! or ask them to visit the store. :-) While I'm still searching the job market, I'd appreciate a little boost in sales for Christmas!

Friday, November 25, 2005


"Ang matandaaaaaa...kahit kubaaaa......sapilitang tumindig-tindig upang kumendeeeeeeng!"

OMG!!!! This has been playing over and over my head for the past 2 days! I've got the LSS.."Last Song Syndrome"! My mom has been playing this tape over and over and over. Singing this song over and over and over! Choreographing it over and over and over, much to my kid's amusement.

This is an original song made by my mom's friend's friend, and they're gonna present it (dance it!) for their Lions Club's Induction on January next year. I could just imagine a dozen Lady Lions, aged around 40-70 years, dancing to this beat.

Would I dare watch it? I really don't know...for after this piece, the beat livens up and they put their hair down! "Ma-ma-ma-ma-ma ma yo quiero, ma ma yo quiero, ma ma yo quiero mama!..."

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Carrots are good for you!

"...A marriage is a friendship...a partnership...a promise. It takes A LOT of work to keep a marriage going. There's always A LOT of maintenance work. Humour needs to be there, too."

A good friend taught me that. And she sent this too.....

"...Here's something from Eleanor Roosevelt which I hope will lift your spirits anytime and anywhere: ..."

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.'"

Thanks, Carrotte!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Diego says....

Today Sunday, is another weekend when the house gets filled up with kids (my brothers, and mine) we usually show-off our kids' latest "talents" much to my mom's and everyone's delight! Here was what my 3 year-old has to offer....

"Diego, can you say stegasaurus? "

"Can you say brontosaurus?"


"How about thesaurus?"

Friday, November 18, 2005

Firefox horror

Geeeez! I've been trying to fix this one for the longest time! Guess I should put a "Best viewed with Internet Explorer" tag. Mozilla Firefox users would get an unpleasant experience when My Scratch Pad gets viewed in their browsers. My blog's completely blown off in Firefox!!!! I tried tweaking things up but as things begin to look good in Firefox, IE gets 'jealous'! I can't seem to fix one without the other one getting blown out!


Thursday, November 17, 2005

Subject: ZSAZSA ZATURNNAH: Ang Kagila-gilalas na Auditions-Ever!!

As I am subscribed to Tanghalang Pilipino's mailing list, receiving this particular email brings an overwhelming joy because of three things: One -- I love Zsazsa Zaturnnah. Two,-- the musical's really, really gonna push through (Feb 2006) , and three -- I get excited with anything that concerns any of my family. In this case, Cak, my brother.

From Tanghalang Pilipino:


When : November 29, 2005 2PM-8PM and December 6, 2005 2PM-8PM
Where : Bulwagang Amado Hernandez (Conference Room) Ground Floor, CCP MAIN BLDG.

3. CAN SING VERY WELL (We mean it!)
4. RESUME WITH 2X2 HEADSHOT (or bigger)

Auditionees must BELT OUT A COMIC RENDITION OF A SERIOUS SONG (a capella or accompanied by minus-one/music piece), complete with DANCE STEPS OR MOVEMENT (Yes, solo production number ito.)
NOTE: Wearing of costume is strongly encouraged.

Please register by phone beginning November 22, 2005. For more details, call the TP office at 832-3661 or832-1125 locals 1620/1621. (pero utang na loob, walang mga nakapagngingitngit na tanong para hindi ma-IM angmga dakilang taga-TP at mabagsakan kayo ng phone, ok?) =)
Hmmm... they didn't mention if they were looking for a girl or boy?!? What amuses me too is that it sort of gets to me like it was ZsaZsa Zaturnnah her/himself who's calling for auditions!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Accio, Harry!

Today, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire will hit the movie theaters. Can't wait! Can't wait! Can't wait! In anticipation of the hoards of Happy Potter fans coming to watch the movie, most shopping malls will have HP4 showing in majority of their theaters. Partly of course for the fans, and also, to probably make up or offset revenues due to the almost 3 hours playing time.

This is the only movie that I make sure I watch on its' opening day. I really don't know why. It's the magic perhaps, or maybe I just wanted to be among the firsts!

Now..... who's gonna sit and watch with me through almost 6 hours of Harry and Goblet? Someone who has a good control of his/her bladder.. for 3 hours max! Wait, you might ask... "Did Reia say almost 6 hours?!?"

Oh, did you know that I ALWAYS watch a movie twice in a row? Wicked!

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Unframed Peacock.. pressed botanical art

This botanical art piece has been laying on a table in our home library, covered by a thick table cloth, along with 4 other pressed flower/weed art on recycled paper with fiber, roughly the size of one whole sheet of cartolina, that I've made almost 3 years ago to date... for the mere reason that I don't have the time to have it framed (aside from framing being sooo expensive here).

The tail consists of dried narra tree pods, and the weeds you see there serving as the tail is actually one whole thing... it takes the length of 1 1/2 newspaper spreads for pressing! The crown is pressed Bleeding Heart, this plant actually grew on the spot in our garden where two of my cats are ummm... resting, and now at the 'rainbow bridge' (kinda weird and spooky at the same time) . The pressed flowers that make up the body are red and yellow santan, malaysian mums, bougainvilla, caballero, and a yellow flower which name escapes me. The peacock's legs are pressed kamias flowers and the feet are a kind of weed found on vacant lots here.

Though the colors now are not that bright and intense anymore, this is still one of my pieces that I am extremely proud of. Framed or not.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Awww, shucks!

I just wanted to thank Homer Jay for his description of My Scratch Pad in his Eccentric Father blogroll! He quotes:

My Scratch Pad - Reia is a Fabulous Filipina, an artist, a mom and she has cats. How can you resist?

I frequent his blog. I learned, I laughed and I loved it! He has an equally talented wife and adorable kids! How can I resist?!? Pay him a visit!

Endangered Species

I lost my mobile phone in a tricycle.

You could imagine how I must have felt! Only seconds when I alighted the tricycle and entered our house did I realize that my mobile isn't in my pocket anymore. The first thing that came to my mind was to call my number, hoping that the driver would hear/see it. My phone kept on ringing (I borrowed my mom's phone) as I kept on calling, while I 'jogged' back to the tricycle terminal only around a minute walk where I live. When I arrived at the terminal, it happened. Something that I dreaded to hear -- "..the telephone number you
dialled is out of coverage area or is turned off"
OH NO!!!!!!!

I couldn't remember the tricycle's serial number, let alone the driver's looks! There were 3 other drivers at the terminal who were reassuring me that my phone will be returned IF it were the driver who found it (though in the back of my mind, I really doubt it). I was almost losing hope because of the fact that my phone was turned off when I tried calling again. After several questions and answers, they came to a conclusion that it was a driver named 'Lakay' and was also confirmed by a little boy who saw me (and Diego) ride his
tricycle. One of the drivers, named Batang offered his ride to look for Lakay. We went around other terminals, in Marquinton, Midtown, and Marcos Hiway, but no Lakay. Until finally, he suggested that we head back to check. Sure enough, nearing their terminal, a driver of a passing tricycle called out to say that Lakay has returned. Sure enough, he was there.

These tricycle drivers, whose names are as unique as themselves-- Batang, Ikot, Luter, and Elmer, are endangered species alright! As for Lakay, well, I never did ask him why my phone was turned off, or why he didn't pass by my house to return it (I could just imagine how his fellow drivers 'gang-up' on him when he returned). But the joy of knowing that there are still people like the other drivers warms the heart! Hearing stories about lost mobile phones and not getting them back, where are the 'real' heroes? ... I thought they were extinct! That's what I thought...

I lost my mobile phone in a tricycle. And got it back after 20 minutes.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Back Home

Home at last! after 3 sleepless nights and 4 days at the hospital. Andee seems better now. She made friends with the interns and nurses, and 'enjoyed' her stay at the hospital. Except for, well,

  • the number of times (4!!) she had to endure the pain of the intravenous needle (three nurses had to hold her down!) because it comes off, due to her jerking, kicking, howling and all;
  • the times (2!) when she had to undergo a skintest to determine if she has allergic reactions to the medication; and
  • the number of times times (9!!) when antibiotic had to be injected via the intravenous tube (yes it hurts, while the medicine itself thick in consistency, one could feel it, like a burning sensation once it enters your veins).

It pains to see her in this situation. But I hope she learns from all this. She never really listened to us... rest, rest, and rest when you are sick. But no!! And this is what she got.

The first night she was asking for her dad, and was asking why the other kids have their dads with them. Nikki never really called the house-- after that fit with my mom (long bad story). When we were transferred to a private room on the second day, she again hoped that her dad was there (she just mentions this to me, not to her grandma-- (guess she knows of the situation). Last night, our last night there, at 8 pm after her grandma left, her dad came (got info from Diego's nanny). You could see Andee's face.. wide-eyed, brightened-up, smiling. Almost brought tears to my eyes. Nikki stayed by her side and Andee began talking, as if updating him on what had happened since her birthday (the last time they saw each other). She asked him to stay with
her till she slept. And he did. Then he left, but not without arguing again and digging up pasts.

I can't hide the fact on how bad I really felt because of the reason he visited. It was not because of Andee, though he says it is... but it was for his own self-reasons.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Ooops! forgot...

I got this PM from a friend who was sort of wondering why I still hadn't posted the pictures of the pressed weeds I did for Siglo:Freedom, as stated in one of my blog entries. Sorry po! Tumatanda na kasi! (Getting older!) I've posted a few here.. installment muna ha?!? So it'll give me an excuse to post another entry! LOL

The colors are still there but not as intense as when I first made it (2 years ago!!!!) Again, they are mostly weeds. First one is pressed cosmos and santan. Second is pressed bachelor's button. The third, weeds from our garden, and forth, bougainvillas (which I learned that their colors lasts just one week!) Actual size is 5x7 More to come!

*** I'll be on 'blog-leave' for a few days, since I'm taking my daughter, Andee, to St. Victoria's Hospital here in Marikina (bronchopneumonia with asthmas accdg. to her pedia). I'm not sure how long but I just hope everything will be fine. She is scheduled also for chest xray and CBC. Till then!!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Stress-free cat

Tygra is finally getting his weight back! He still lounges in his favorite spot in our mahjong table in the terrace (or lays down in the middle of the garden-- my mom swears that she always mistaken Tygra as a big snake!!) and we noticed that his coat color and pattern seems to be getting more and more intense (maybe that's why).

He is finally stress-free! That big bully of a stray cat who always pester him is now nowhere to be seen and it also seems that Whiskas is doing wonders for him (used to be Friskies)!

Hmmm... stress-free..? big bullygone....alternative choice of food, or habit perhaps....

........wonder if it would work for me....hmmm...

Sunday, November 06, 2005

7-Week Countdown

I was visiting a friend's blog this afternoon and was "oh my!" surprised to realize when I read:

"...reminded me thru her blog, it's only 7 weeks till Xmas. ..."

I suddenly remembered Andee and my nephew, Jaki, doing one of their 'things to do' list when their semestral break from school started last week of October, which included, among others,..... paint a dinosaur, dance every morning, watch Barney and Mr. Bean, and PUT UP CHRISTMAS TREE BEFORE OCT. 7 ! They wanted to have the tree up before school starts. Sure enough, Andee remembered it but brushed it aside when my brother Earl, his wife and their 1 year old son, Hugo came over for lunch. Department stores, radio stations, tv, and papers are now doing their countdown! Maybe I should too....

  • 6 weeks before we stack up on menu ingredients for Christmas Eve's "Noche Buena" and Christmas Day lunch
  • 5 weeks before last minute Christmas shopping
  • 4 weeks before we finally see who would be the big winner of Pinoy Big Brother
  • 3 weeks before I officially put up Christmas decorations, lights, and of course, our 8-foot Looney Toon inspired Christmas tree
  • 2 weeks before I officially put up Christmas decorations, lights, and of course, our 8-foot Looney Toon inspired Christmas tree to surrender to the kid's constant "can we put up the tree NOW? " , and
  • 1 week before I could finish my Christmas naughty and nice list, and put up Christmas icons in my stores and blog!
    • 7 weeks. Hmm, sounds a long way till Christmas, but then again, it'll suddenly be just "around the corner!"

      Thursday, November 03, 2005

      Warhol-styled Cats

      My head ached the whole weekend. I was really trying to squeeze out every creative juice my brain could come up with!

      I've finally managed to finish my latest collection for my Cafepress store, JustCats. The designs are Andy Warhol-style inspired. He was well known for creating ink images with slight color changes. Warhol's signature style used commercial silkscreening techniques to create identical, mass produced images on canvas, then variations in color to give each print of an edition a different look. Imagine photocopying in black and white a favorite photograph, then coloring it!

      I concentrated with dark outlines and solid colors, well, not exactly 'warhol', but I liked his effect. This cat-lover of an artist is much identified with Pop Art. Eye-catching, yes?

      Below is a set of framed tiles from JustCats in my new collection.

      Wednesday, November 02, 2005

      Of ghosts, spirits and dwarves

      Halloween, All Saint's Day, All Soul's Day.

      All that was shown on television were documentaries and news about ghosts, spirits, and the unknown. My kids would watch these shows too, but not without the preliminary pleading and tanrums, AND the expected 'stay with me while I sleep' post-tv horror/ghost show rants. Shows like these interest them, probably because they had first-hand experience with the 'supernatural'.

      Andee and Diego had been seeing some 'things'. Andee, most especially... dwendes (dwarves) , white ladies, and a kapre here in the house. A white lady looking at her from the window, or from our gate. Dwarves (3) who would tickle her feet in the morning, or invite her to visit their home near our kamias tree, or who just watch her from our garden. The kapre whom she saw, once, inside our house (minus the cigar).

      I've had my share too. Something that would merit a story for Nginig! Aside from seeing (mostly) spirits here at home and office, I've seen dwarves and well, was courted by one, or rather, was 'mated' by one. Well, yes, I was shocked too, when my kids and nephew got sick for no reason and no medicine could heal, and had them visit an 'albularyo' or 'manggagamot' only to find out that it was me she wanted to 'treat'. Which exlains why my monthly period lasted more than 5 days (and heavy flow at that!) instead of the usual 3; why I have 'small, collective' bruises in my inner thigh, why I feel that I've been 'used', and mostly, why I've got blisters, wounds and scabs on both my legs which never seem to heal.

      I apparently 'lost' his baby, according to the albularyo. There were lots of thing that happened that time (Dec. 2003-Jan 2004) But to make the story short, I had to do a food offering in our garden. I was treated with coconut oil mixed with various leaves, barks, stones and chants-- the wounds were gone in about 3 days. Since then, I've been seeing spirits that are more 'solid', so to speak-- a kid in our room, a tall man in my brother's room, my uncle, a woman-- not the usual peripheral vision sightings. And yes, the dwarves too.. they are still here, the 3 of them.

      Hard to believe? Spirits, no, but dwarves? Yeah, at first. Well, I never saw any connection until my brother mentioned a picture of me long ago as a child, which, when our nanny saw it, was torn to pieces and thrown away. The picture? It was me in the garden. And in the background, a dwarf standing by a flower pot.

      Tuesday, November 01, 2005

      My dad and All Saint's Day

      It's All Saints' Day today and we've just got back from the cemetery. It has been a tradition for us to visit my dad's and grandfather's grave, though this year, we didn't spend the night there, like we always do.

      My dad died in 1989, 2 weeks after my college graduation. I always had that feeling that he just waited for me, his only daughter, to graduate. Papa had two other sons by his first wife who neither graduated from college (they got married early). Aside from that, based on a story my mom told us, there was a time (I was in high school then) when the doctors found a mass of some sort in my dad's liver, I think, and it was not really good news. My dad, the nervous-wreck that he is, which is ironic since he's a lawyer, decided to seek a second opinion. Before another series of tests, he visited the hospital chapel and did what he had never done in his life-- read the bible and feverishly prayed. He asked for strength and another chance at life. Apparently, my dad said.. (from my mom's exact words) "gusto ko lang na may magtapos na anak ko"..("I just wanted to see one of my children graduate"). A few days later, the test results showed no mass whatsoever. Nilch. None. Zero.

      My dad died in 1989, 2 weeks after my college graduation. He died of aneurism of the aorta.

      Wednesday, October 26, 2005

      Name Game

      I frequent my Friendster account every once in a while and noticed a list for "top searches in my network". Topping the list was "the meaning of my name". Really, how a name makes the person--or how the person makes the name! Meaning of the name comes in only secondary... the main event is deciding on WHAT name.

      I remember minor arguements and discussions when deciding a name for my kids...AND my cats! Criteria? As a parent, It would range from a favorite name we have in mind just in case we had kids, to a combination of both parents' or grandparents' names, to a favorite artist or singer or president, to names of trends whether in fashion or movies, etc. As a pet owner, it would range mostly from physical characteristics of your pet, to favorite icons, or expressions, and trends, to the first thing that comes to your mind. And while we're at it...

      I have 2 names.. Reia Paulina.
      Reia (reeya) was given by my dad... for "Rey", spanish for king and Paulina from both grandmothers: Paulina and Carolina.

      My kids names are: Andrea Mari Mikaela and Tristan Diego Romano.
      • Andrea from my paternal great, grandaunt,
      • Mari from both of our (Nikki's and mine) moms.. Marie Sharmaine and Maria Ceres ; and
      • Mikaela, from St. Michael since my mom insisted a name based on the catholic calendar (hence, Sept. 29th, Andee's birthday is also the feast of the 3 angels.. one of which is St. Michael)
      Tristan Diego Romano V.
      • Tristan from his dad's name Tristan Cesar III,
      • Diego from a favorite name since high school, and
      • Romano, I don't know where his dad got it.

      Diego is 'the fifth' for obvious reasons and I'd say a male's point of pride...Tristan Sr. (greatgrandfather), Tristan Valentin Jr. (eldest son), Tristan Cesar III (a.k.a. Nikki, Andee's and Diego's dad), Tristan Nolan IV (third son) and finally Tristan Diego V.

      And for some of those who say that, whoa... poor kid! giving them a hard time at school writing down their full names! LOL well.... Andee managed and actually enjoyed it, writing her full name, I mean. As with Diego, hmmm..I'll know next year.

      Friday, October 21, 2005

      20 bits of info about me

      There are perks for being a frequent diner at Kusina ni Karina... you get tagged! LOL now I try to think back more than 3 decades for those 20 bits and am now jotting them down in my scratch pad...
      1. Spicy food! spicy food!
      2. At 5'5" I am so totally, totally underweight at 95 lbs
      3. My maximum weight during pregnancy was a whooping..drumroll pls... 125 lbs.!
      4. I melt at a simple "I'm sorry" and totally forget everything!
      5. I love qwek-qwek (boiled quail eggs covered in orange batter deep fried and served with spicy chili vinegar sauce)
      6. I'd rather cook all day than clean the house.
      7. I collect paper napkins and tissues from fast food outlets and restaurants (yes..lots of Jollibee varieties!)...since 1987
      8. Got a perfect score of 100% in art class (was it 4th or 5th grade?) for a popsicle stick project... a one bedroom, two-storey dollhouse with basic furniture etc. Gave it to a good friend, Vivian Mariano.
      9. Highest grade in High School - Statistics /attended remedial class for Algebra.
      10. Highest grades in College - Psychology of Learning, and Industrial Psychology / flunked and repeated Phil. Constitution & Taxation class. (duh?)
      11. Dubbed 'crush ng bayan' at work in Splash Island...( was a 'female-employee-challenged waterpark' )
      12. I've never been to Boracay!
      13. I have an exact pink cardigan that Hermione wore in HP3 (wicked!!! :-))
      14. I have yet to re-claim my driver's license for "Yellow Lane" traffic violation.
      15. I admire Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (hey, keep your opinions to yourselves!)
      16. Appeared in Korina Sanchez' TV Show, Balitang K as spokesperson for Warner Bros.' Bean Bag Collection (2000) only to discover a huge hair clip attached to the collar of my uniform after the taping!
      17. No to beer. Yes to tequilas and margaritas. And coffee. LOL
      18. I'd like to have a ragdoll kitten.
      19. I am a Cafepress and Blogger addict.
      20. This list took me almost 2 hours to finish.

      That was hard! But it was fun! Not really 'bits' though..

      TAG!! --- scratches to --Cak, and Gel! Now, update your blogs please :-)

      Thursday, October 20, 2005

      Road to recovery

      I am now undergoing a tremendous recovery from my initial shock of unemployment. Thanks so much...
      • to my blogging friends for those comments, emails and PMs;
      • to my cat Tygra who still makes me laugh when he falls from the mahjong table while he sleeps and still manages to get on all fours in time;
      • Diego who never fails to steal a kiss while I sit staaaarrriiing at the computer, and
      • Andee who keeps on asking me to draw this and that and argue that her small letter "F" in calligraphy does not look like a small letter "B" (oh yeah it does!!).
      So far I've kept myself busy tweaking and doing a major shop make-over for JustCATS , and getting my other stores up. Doing new designs for the holidays. I also recently just set up a blog to complement our Yahoo Group (SSAM high school batch 85). Well aside from that, it's still job-hunting galore!

      Tuesday, October 18, 2005


      It's final. I am out of work.

      Gosh, it took me around 20 whole minutes staring at those first two sentences before I could continue. My mind's not working. I feel all beat up. The company decided to close apparently because of miscommunication between the company's owners and their Canadian partners. No there wasn't any bad blood between the two. It's just business.

      What do I do now? Maybe I should pursue a full-time 'career' with my cafepress store and do something about that average 2 sales/month, or finally get the my online stores the attention they deserve. Heck yes...but, no. With two growing kids and no savings whatsoever... how can I? It was my choice in the first place-- leaving a good job at a big call center because of better pay. And now that choice only lasted 9 months. (sigh) Wrong move Reia... how can a start-up company be any better with a globally known call center?

      Now I feel stress creeping up behind me again. Headaches to the max. It's like my head's going to burst any minute now... and tear ducts are waiting for any opportune moment to unload...

      Saturday, October 15, 2005

      An Apple a day

      This morning, my kids, Andee and Diego, and my 5 year old nephew, Jaki (short for.. hold your breath..James Kirk, son of my Star-Trek-fanatic-of-a-brother, Baron) were painting with watercolor in the living room. While watching them, I got hold of one of Andee's' chinese brushes and started to paint the first thing that comes to my mind.

      Wallah! For all you psychologists out there (forgive a graduate of the same field myself, I can't decipher this on my own..) I present to you my 1st watercolor piece after 18 years. I was trying to remember during my Psychological Testing class about drawing tests and color interpretation. Hmmm... I see not much (not much?!?) dark or glum probably that deep breathing exercise last night indeed cleared (again, for now..) my thoughts.

      And an apple?!? Well.. I think it does help take those blues away.

      Friday, October 14, 2005

      Cry for help

      My whole week was bad. It was downright terrible. Stress at work and here comes the danger of the company where I work with shutting down. I feel depressed. No time for myself. No one to talk to. Peace and quiet at home was next to impossible. Too old (?) to look for work (yeah, since most Philippine jobs have a maximum age limit of 30, unless I'd settle for call centers AGAIN which is the last thing I wanna...). Lots of financial obligations, etc. etc. etc.

      The stress is getting so physical and I can really feel the discomfort. Headaches. Back and neck pains. I get hot flushes (left side of my head, starts with my left ear actually..) every now and that stress related or am I getting old?!?!

      I cried buckets the other day, glad a good friend was there. She has yet to convince me to listen to those hypnosis theraphy downloads thingis about gratitude, confidence, etc, that could help and liven me up. "It's only 28 minutes, Sis!" Yeah. 28 whole minutes. It's short-- but way to long for,..wailing! I could picture buckets and buckets of tears again. Eyes and nose all swollen and red. She eventually managed to have me do deep breathing exercises instead.." to clear yourself of those negative vibes..etc...etc.."

      Well, it did help. For now...

      Monday, October 10, 2005

      Up, up and away

      While eating breakfast this morning, my 3 year old son, Diego, who was doodling in the living room, began shouting at the top of his voice calling for his yaya (nanny). After a while, Yaya Delia, his nanny, went to the kitchen giggling. I asked why, and what Diego wanted. She said, in Diego's words: "Yaya, a-tayo bird ko!" (Yaya, my 'birdie' is standing up!). Oh my! I laughed, then in a snap, I began thinking.... yes, I know that 'it' usually gets up in attention during mornings... but now, thinking about it makes me quite, I don't know, in tagalog terms "nababagabag". My little boy has really grown up!!!! What do I do now?!? I am panicking here.

      I remember last weekend while watching tv (I can't remember what show it was) Diego began complaining and shouted "mama,mama!a-tayo,a-tayo!" (It's standing, it's standing!) I had to calm him down and give him his toy. this comes with being a mom. Seemed easier with my 7 year old daughter when she asked how she got into my tummy. Thoughts come in and out of my head..oh no! I was thinking of questions my little boy might ask in the future... or a bit anxious as to what he might 'discover' next.

      My random thoughts were put into hold when Diego came into the kitchen laughing.

      "! baba na birdie ko" (Mama, it's down now!).

      Thursday, October 06, 2005

      Pretty handsome in pink!

      I like looking at guys (straight guys, mind you!) who wear pink. On my way to work today I saw this guy waiting for a ride. Nice pink long-sleeved shirt! Had my eyes glued to him. I find them to be more masculine... and BRAVE enough to wear that color, amidst all conclusions that pink is feminine AND/OR effeminate.

      Had I read it somewhere during my merchandising career stints that the color pink originally was intended to be worn by males? Yes, males. As in men. Macho. Gentleman. Hombre. Lalaki. Papa. The logic apparently behind it is that this color, when worn by the male specie, sends out a signal to the ever vulnerable female that makes the latter fall for this shade. Hence, 'physical' attraction. The guy then gets his catch.

      Whether myth or fact, yeah... it gets me. LOL well, he smiled first.

      .... and that was that (sigh!)

      Tuesday, October 04, 2005

      Freedom in weeds

      About 18 months ago, my brother Carl (Ang Kagila-gilalas na Pakikisapalaran ni ZsaZsa Zaturnnah, One Night in Purgatory) asked me if he could use my pressed flower art for a new graphic novel he and his group of very talented artists were doing. The title was Siglo: Freedom. The novel featured Filipino comic and graphic novelists at its best and a collection of comics stories about the Philippine experience of freedom.

      Each set in a different time and place in Philippine history (and future), from Jolo in 1913 to Manila in 2004, the 10 tales in "Siglo" tackle a different vision of the quest for freedom, told through the writers' and artists' unique perspective. Staged in black-and-white and told mostly in English, each tale showcases the creators' diverse strengths and distinctive storytelling qualities. (full review)
      It was only recently that I've learned that the novel was a recipient of a Manila Critic's Circle National Book Award tied with Mar Ravelo's Darna. There were several pressed flower or botanical art pieces that Carl used for each of the novel's chapters, as well as for embellishments for some of the novel's pages.

      The picture of my work above is featured on a spread inside the novel and is my rendition of Freedom entitled "Against the Wind", done on a 30x22 recycled paper. I used mainly weeds found on vacant lots, a few bougainvilla flowers (not a good choice since these fade in time), and narra pod shells. I will be posting every now and then, some of the pressed flower/ botanical art piece that was used in between chapters. For the meantime...enjoy! :-)

      Btw, stay tuned for Siglo:Passion. TBA

      Monday, October 03, 2005

      Orange and Lemons

      I have a huge crush on this Filipino band Orange and Lemons' lead vocal. See the one in grey? He's got this great voice! I don't know if he is Clem Castro or Mcoy Fundales. I know they've been around and won an MTV Pilipinas Award for best video (2005) and NU Rock Awards’ Best New Artist for 2004. (Thanks to Pinoy Big Brother or I'll never get to know that they existed!)

      Can anyone tell me? Guys with great voices are wow!

      Sunday, October 02, 2005

      The weekend that was...

      Andee celebrated her 7th birthday last September 29th. There was this Fun Day event at her school and I accompanied her. I would want to throw her a birthday party with all her friends, but honestly I couldn't find time to plan it all and besides, raising two kids really had my hands full with all financial obligations. I promised her a trip to Star City Amusement Park, with Diego and her dad (she pleaded..oh well) on Saturday (that was yesterday).

      But as unfortunate events would have it, Diego was rushed to the hospital because of frequent vomiting. I had to leave work earlier. It turned out, after series of tests, that he had Urinary Track Infection (at 3 years old?!?!) Anyway, we spent the night at the hospital. His dad, Nikki, came over. Diego was a brave kid. He just yelped a simple 'Ouch!' when the intern inserted the intravenous needle. It was nice to see his dad show concern, for a change.

      Yesterday, Saturday, we went to Star City, the second time we went out as a family, ever. I enjoyed it and I knew the kids did too...they were with their dad.

      Thursday, September 29, 2005

      I was a call girl.

      I was invited to be a resource person for a class of graduating Industrial and Organizational Psychology students of PUP (Polytechnic University of the Philipppines), to talk about call centers and unemployment. To be exact,
      "Call Centers: An aid to Unemployment in the Philippines".

      Apparently, the original resource speaker, an Operations Manager from a big call center in Ortigas, Pasig sent his regrets at the last minute. Now, why me? I was asking Jen ( My aunt. She's 24 and a student at PUP) the same thing. Aside from me being the nearest relative to had worked in call centers, she has no other choice!

      I was a 'call' girl. My uh, very umm, 'impressive' portfolio in this field extends to 3 call center gigs (for SmartPhone technical help, to BellSouth DSL, to JpMorgan) in just about 18 months! Yeah, I am a quote/unquote..authority in this subject all right! I'm not exactly THAT enthusiastic of talking about something not exactly my league. After confusing my bodyclock, ruining my eating habits, commiting 'social' suicide, and losing 15 pounds... (graveyard shift blues) I doubt if I'll ever wear another headset again. Why not have a talk on how to blog!, or do pressed flower art, or how to successfully bathe a cat? or stuff like that ?!?!? I only had about 6 hours to prepare, but thanks to google and my reliable PC, it was a breeze! Well, I won't go into details of my one hour talk. A lot has been written and said about this so called Sunshine Industry that is, Call Center phenomenon to hit Philippine shores. Whether good or bad, advantageous or not, I was glad to had been in it.

      And based on the questions raised after the talk...I'd say I did swell. Even had a few students asking for tips and more information for their thesis. That was a great morning and now, just had my lunch... and I'm

      I was a 'call girl', and at 37, I am, ehem, an authority(in my own terms hehe).

      Wednesday, September 28, 2005

      Mini me and thongs!

      Mini skirts. That's what I have mostly. Mini skirts. It was a gruesome task of weeding out my closet and this are all I find. I've never really gotten used to wearing those long, flowing skirts. Well, if I DID, it would have a slit up to mid-thigh!!! Nothing really..just feel more comfortable wearing those minis, aside from my usual jeans and shirt. I always advice those who prefer minis to wear at least dark undies!! Yeah, unless you'd like the guy across you seeing something he shouldn't see (applies mostly to us who take the public jeepney to work!).

      And speaking of which, I wore a new thong to work (har-har!)! I just hate it when I see a suspicious outline of an undie across your butt when you wear jeans. The only thing is, with the trend now of low-waist jeans, people do get an itsy-bitsy glimpse of what you're wearing when you sit or bend down a little. I had to ride a tricycle on my way to work but this time, sit at the back of the driver (I was running late, ok?) That gentleman of a guy already sitting inside the tricycle's cab didn't offer his seat! So, in short, I could feel the cool wind brush my lower back... and i just realized that I was in full (back)view of this guy giving him a little peak of what I was wearing.

      Well, hmmm...lucky guy.

      Monday, September 26, 2005

      Feline Communities

      Image hosted by

      When I checked my email this morning, I received a "Friends Request" invitation from Enrico, a handsome jet black copper-eyed Bombay. Huh?!? Oh, it was supposedly for Cotton, my tortoiseshell cat!!! LOL The invitation was from Catster, a feline counterpart of the likes of Friendster, or MySpace, or Yahoo360, etc. Catster is a community of felines seeking friend(cats)ship, part(cat)ners, or just looking around, well, you know the drill.

      The community has the same features as any online communities, like personalized profile (yes, my cats have their pics and profiles there!), family list, friends list!, online journal, classifieds and even a very interesting forum where you'll find cats looking for dates (yes they are!!!! virtual dates, that is!), seeking advice 'which cat litter is better?' or just swooning over a new cat on the block!!

      For all feline enthusiasts, this is a really cool feline community! My cats Tygra, Cotton, Jennifer and Zaturr are members already. Pity I don't have pictures of my other cats... they'll be joining the catwagon for sure!!!

      Check it out. By the way, there's also a Dogster! (and Petster even!)

      Thursday, September 22, 2005

      I tried..

      I did a surprise move this afternoon. I invited Nikki to a movie. Though I lost hope already of any possibility that we can work this out AGAIN... with all my pride and self-respect already gone because of physical and emotional torture, I just got to try that perhaps I could make it work once again.

      He accepted, but as expected, we never got to watch. Half-way to our destination, another arguement. He then blurted out that he just wasted his time and that he'll go home instead (he is paying rent somewhere..) I'm used to that. I'm used to being shouted at by him in public. He brought me home. I called the kids. Andee and Diego were oh so happy to see their dad. I left them alone in the terrace....

      That was more than 3 hours ago. Right now as I am writing this, I am looking at 3 year old Diego, playing with the broken front wheel of his now dilapidated favorite toy truck. I can't help but smile at his handsomeness and innocence.. and how he would smile back at me. Then all at once, as if my world would again collapse, I can't breathe, I feel as if a very heavy brick got stuck in my chest, and tears start forming in my eyes, as Diego asked.." Mama, si Papa ko?" (Mama, where's my Papa?)

      Wednesday, September 21, 2005

      Which Filipino Food are you?

      Lechon Baboy: Roasted to a crisp. The main act on
      a Filipino buffet repertoire.

      Which Filipino Food Are You?
      brought to you by Quizilla

      Yummy. Not EXACTLY of Filipino origin, but what the heck?!?! Still as delicious as it is loaded with cholesterol!
      My friends insist I take this test...

      This is "me". How about you?

      Friday, September 16, 2005

      Rainy days with ZsaZsa Zaturnnah

      Finally finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at exactly 2:37 this morning amidst a really heavy downpour!. Yeah, the rain must had added a gloomy thing there because even when it was a beautiful sunny day during Dumbledore's last rites, it brought tears to my eyes. I was dissappointed it ended so abruptly. Hmm.. how long now do we had to wait for the 7th book?!?! I'm re-reading it again though (as i always do with all HP books).

      Another one that I've started to read again (for the nth time) is Ang Kagila-gilalas na Pakikisapalaran ni ZsaZsa Zaturnnah by Carlo Vergara (wait..I'm trying to think of an ample english title for that..!). It is a graphic novel (so that's what they call 'comics' nowadays!) which won the Manila Critics' Circle National Book Award for Best Comic Book (was that in 2002 or 2003?!?!). ZsaZsa is a spoof and affectionate homage to Philippine superheroine and cultural icon, Darna. For rainy days like this I would really need a laugh (what I got was a tummy-ache! the book was soooo hilarious!) It's reeaally a great read! (hmmm....smells of nepotism here...LOL)

      Btw, since it seems like it's taking forever for Regal Films to release the movie version, Tanghalang Pilipino will stage a musical of Ang Kagila-gilalas na Pakikisapalaran ni ZsaZsa Zaturnnah next year, Feb-March 2006! Don't want to miss that!!!

      Monday, September 12, 2005

      Ang sarap pala ng feeling pag may nakayakap sa yo!

      Image hosted by

      "What a wonderful feeling when you're being hugged!"

      Tagline taken from the latest Modess Feminine Pads with Wings commercial.

      Sunday, September 11, 2005

      Harry Potter and the Half-Awake Reia

      I apologize for this long delayed post (almost a week!) I started to read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (at last! after being stuck at Chaper 2 for the longest time!!!) Thanks, Vicky... I was 'inspired' to really find time to continue to read the book LOL... wasn't able to update this blog! I have a few more chapters and I'm done. I would start reading when I get home from work (after watching Pinoy Big Brother and dinner). Placed aside temporarily my Cafepress stores and read HP till it's almost 4am!! Then I'll be back to work, half asleep, half awake.
      "Ok, ok... just one more chapter then I'm, off to bed!" Hmmm...I think
      I've said that more than 5x per night!
      After that, I'll be reading it again from the top! (I always read HP books at least thrice-- can't get enough of it!) Gosh, the main characters have really grown and the plot is really interesting! More questions were definitely answered!

      I remembered my first encounter with Harry was when we would have a story-telling session for my staff at Warner Bros. Studio Store way back 1999 I think. They would always kid me for my own verbal and animated rendition of Harry Potter (books 1,2 and 3) Tagalog edition! Hey that wasn't easy LOL but it certainly was fun!

      Tuesday, September 06, 2005

      Pretty Ballerina

      Image hosted by
      I was rummaging through my desk, hoping to get ideas for new designs for Cafepress, when my daughter came in and asked me to draw a ballerina for her. Gosh, it seemed liked ages since I last drew! What seemed like eternity, I gave her the pencil drawing. God bless little children! They always appreciated little things. Andee was VERY satisfied with the ballerina I drew...(well, I'm not lol). Would've included a picture of the drawing here, but she had her nanny make it into a paper boat! :-)

      Anyway, it made me realize that I do have a ballerina piece of art back when I was still in college. Well I found it...under stacks and stacks of dusty files and folders-- the work is 14 years old now! (am I THAT old?) Hmmm.... good thing it fits well on our scanner. So, here it is! Oil pastel on a 9x12 drawing pad, drawn in 1988. Wish I could replicate that..!
      Never too late! :-)

      Monday, September 05, 2005


      Received this forwarded email this morning. Figured I'd share it. Since it was written in Tagalog, I've translated it to English. LOL didn't know if it gave justice to the joke... :-)

      Where'd the peso go?

      There's this great shirt in a department store worth Php
      97.00. You've no money so you borrwed Php 50.00 from your best
      friends and another Php 50.00 from your sister. How much do you
      have now? (ans: Php 100.00)

      You bought the T-Shirt. How much is your change? (ans: Php

      You returned Php 1.00 to your best friend, how much do you still owe him?
      (ans: Php 49.00)

      The other peso, you returned to your sister, how much do you still owe your
      sister? (ans: Php 49.00)

      You have Php 1.00 left. Now think... 49 + 49 ? (ans: 98) + Php
      1.00 that's left? (ans: 99) Where'd the other peso
      go? Let's analyze this:

      You owe your best friend Php 49.00 plus the Php 1.00 returned equals Php 50.00; You owe your sister Php 49.00 plus the Php 1.00 returned equals Php 50.00.

      50 + 50 ? (ans: 100) plus the peso that's left with you (ans: 101)

      Why do you have an extra peso?

      Sunday, September 04, 2005

      Blog this. Blog that... then fix it.

      Whew..!!! What a day. Imagine to my horror when I checked my blog out after lunch today. The entries were all located (or dis-located?!?) at the bottom of the page!!!! WHAT HAPPENED?!?! It wasn't this way last night. Think. Think.

      I only remembered adding a slide show script for my online store at the sidebar (nice job..pat!pat! LOL for me actually). Anyway, after 4 hours -- thanks to dial-up (scape-goating here) I was able to fix it. I had to reset the template and add the links again..GEEEZZZ!

      Thank you Gel for chatting the time away with me as I fixed this blog. Also to Abner and Art, who were 'popping-up' once in a while to say hi and keep me company!

      Friday, September 02, 2005

      Christmas in September

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      It is September! I could've sworn there was something fishy when, on my way to work this morning, the radio was blaring Jose Mari Chan's "Christmas in our Hearts" yeah, it's September all right... start of the "BER" months (SeptemBER, OctoBER, NovemBER, DecemBER) which also signals the (unofficial) start of the Christmas season for most Filipinos.

      You'll hear Christmas carols this early on the radio. Next month, October, you'll get to see some houses or establishments putting up decorations. Then in November, after the first week (All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day), Christmas will be in full-blast, and last till the first Sunday of January (Feast of the Three Kings). Better start that Christmas list!
      The first Christmas celebrated in the Philippines was in 1565, when Spanish colonizers brought the holiday to the islands.
      LOL that was the info I got from my 6 year old daughter, Andee (thank God she loves books!).

      Wednesday, August 31, 2005

      Rally for Easy Money

      Went to work yesterday with a shirt a bit wrinkled... I am not quite that expert in ironing. It just so happened that our labandera (laundrywoman) wasn't able to come. She launders our clothes on Mondays and comes back the next day for ironing. For some strange reason, she wasn't able to call or text (yes, she has her own mobile phone).
      This morning was a relief. She came in with a story that left me in awe...well, if you'd describe it that way.

      The reason why she wasn't able to come yesterday was because she had to 'attend' a rally re: the impeachment of Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo at the Batasang Pambansa. My mom reacted and asked why the hell does she had to attend that rally. The answer was.. "Ma'am, kasi may bayad na P100.00 para dalawang oras lang" (Ma'am, they pay P100.00 just for 2 hours of rallying). Apparently yesterday, there was a 'recruiter' at their place recruiting 150 people to join the rally for a hundred bucks, complete with merienda (snack)-- juice and hamburger-- and two trucks to charter them to and back. Our labandera has been doing that eversince... I remember the time when I was still in retail and was assigned in Robinson's Galleria-- that was when there was a big big rally in favor of Erap at the Shrine(then Pres. Joseph Estrada) It was the year when he was replaced by GMA. There were lots of people in the mall and grocery with crispy P500.oo bills. Hmmm....

      So to make the story short, our labandera, who earns P300.00 per day for her services, made P300.00 (she was with her two kids) yesterday for just 2 hours, basking under the sun, attending a rally for GMA's impeachment. Sheesh! Well, easy money, that is...

      Tuesday, August 30, 2005

      Art Therapy

      Went out with my good friend, Gel, today. We both sort of need a breathe of fresh air and a dash of civilization, after a week of work. I've known her for the most of my years... classmates from Grades 1-5 (she was in a different class in the 6th grade), 1st-4th year in High School, 1st - 4th year in College, and up to the 1st year at work (at a bank). We only became really friends in 2nd year college.

      Gel is sooo talented in photography. I'd think we'd be a great team with our own galleries! We spent the day talking about life, what it made us, why it made us as such, and what more of life we would anticipate. We visited art galleries in the Shang-rila Plaza Mall in Edsa. Watched a live on-the-spot painting session with Saturday Group's (and my mentor-- teehee!! ) Fernando Sena and his class.

      We also visited Color Me Mine (Philippine franchise at the 5th level of the Shang), where one could paint his/her own ceramic art piece! You chose a ceramic piece and you are provided with paints, templates, etc. You draw or paint your design and once finished, your masterpiece will be 'fired' in kilns (Any of various ovens for hardening, burning, or drying substances such as grain, meal, or clay, especially a brick-lined oven used to bake or fire ceramics.) for that final touch! The staff there are so accomodating and really answered all our queries. Wow... great way to spent the day! Art therapy to the max!

      We'll be coming back, that's for sure.

      Tuesday, August 23, 2005

      The Man In My Life

      When I first saw him, my heart fluttered.
      He has the most wonderful smile that could melt a woman's heart.
      His eyes are expressive. He would catch me looking at him..
      and then he'll give me a smile.

      He'd embrace me tightly when we sleep, seeming to say, 'just be here
      beside me'. He'll wake me up in the morning with his kisses...
      and call out my name.
      He would sneak behind me and steal a kiss and embrace. He'll hold my
      hand and sing me a sweet song.

      When we talk, he'll listen and he'll share his day with me, what
      he had for lunch, the people he met, the places he's been.
      We would laugh together, or just sit and enjoy each other's company.

      He's handsome, he's sweet. And I love him.
      He's three. He's my son. And he's mine.

      Tristan Diego...


      Sunday, August 21, 2005

      The Cat Knows

      Tygra is different today. He seems to sense that today isn't a good day for me. He usually just sits on top of his favorite majhong table in the terrace. For some strange reason, today, he has become a lap cat! He would follow me wherever I go and jump on my lap at any given opportunity he would see. He'd cuddle up and purr as if saying that everything will be just fine.

      Bless you Tygra. *cry*

      Saturday, August 20, 2005

      Stupid is as Stupid can be!

      Have you been in a situation where you are expected to assume a different personality or character? Were you ever caught between work and personal life? Or perhaps lose respect in yourself because of a stupid decision? Well, it's not the most wonderful thing in the world.

      This is what I get for changing careers. I've ever been so happy and content with Retail Management (more than 12 years), since I'm working with people who are 8 or more years younger than I am, makes one see a different perspective in life. I've become their 'mother image' or a 'big sister', where the've given their trust and where their own decisions would also rely on whatever opinion or advice I give them. I can always be seen smiling, laughing... They in turn had given me an alternative home-- well, I am not exactly in a perfect and successful marital bliss.

      Major decisions. Yes. I've changed careers. A bit on the advantageous side. More time for myself. I get to learn more. But did I really? The realities and pressures of THE real work place has taken a toll on me. I've been in retail heaven for the longest time, surrounded with people, busy with everything, etc... well, I miss those times.

      I am to blame. I lost a dear friend because of stupidity. Because of pressures at work? Or because I don't have anything else to do? Simple. Just because I was thinking about my selfish self and what I was expected to do. I had forgotten that I've got other people to answer to. How can I be so insensitive? Miserable? Yes , very. Moving on? Well, trying to. But can't. I won't be able to find anyone like the friend I just lost. My fault.

      Guess that's life.. and a big, big lesson for me. Wherever you are now, my friend, I want you to know that you'll be always in my heart. I sincerely am sorry. You've made me come out of my shell and smell the roses. I never thought that I would trust anyone again.... but I wasn't thinking. I tainted a good relationship. I know you won't forget, but at least forgive me.

      You take care and I love you always.

      Friday, August 19, 2005

      The Great Raid

      I got the chance to watch "The Great Raid" not just because of Filipino actor Cesar Montano (I can't believe I'm posting his picture here too!), but because of the historical relevance it has.

      The movie doesn't have the grand special effects as "Pearl Harbor" or other war movies, but I did appreciate it... story wise. Shot entirely in Australia, I'd say they really did a wonderful job in depicting Philippine countryside. In the Manila scenes, I could've sworn I saw the Manila City Hall in the background.

      The opening scene of the movie showed American POW being led into tunnels (in a Palawan prison camp) by Japanese soldiers. Poured gasoline and setting them on fire. American soldiers who were able to get out of the tunnel were shot by the Japanese.
      I've got this urged to poke at my seatmate and say "Hey.. those tunnels are near my grandmother's house!" (There are first account details of this in my grandmother's book, 'Puerto Princesa during the Second World War: A Narrative History 1941-1945')
      There were good and (mostly)bad reviews about it, but yeah, it's their opinion. I could not agree more with the review given by Roger Ebert . Proud to be Filipino, I am!

      Cesar Montano