Monday, June 8, 2009

The Night I Stopped Dreaming

It has been our Saturday morning routine- we would open our eyes, not to get out of bed, but have our morning talk. In a marriage that’s so young, as the years add up, we won’t run out of stories to tell.

That particular morning, I turned to him, finally admitting in a whisper, “I stopped dreaming.”

My past has gifted me moments of pain and sacrifice... hurt after hurt... even before I healed. So I would close my eyes each night, not to go to sleep... but to paint dreams. They were vivid... clear. Pixel by pixel, I created my tomorrow to be better.

In the daytime, I’d count the hours, anticipating every nightfall. So I could again escape to a happier place I’d sketch in my canvas.

Until the night I stopped dreaming.

Has my well of dreams gone dry?

That morning, it occured to me...

The night I stopped dreaming, was the night we started thanking.

With him, the daybreak had come.

Monday, June 1, 2009

6 Things That Make Me Happy!

The Baffled Blogger tagged me to list 6 unimportant things that make me happy. I'm thinking random, unimportant, little simple things that make my day. I'm thinking of finishing it in less (way less than 6 minutes).

  1. haagen dazs coffee ice cream

  2. duck down pillows and duvets

  3. dolce & gabbana light blue

  4. cheese (yes, even without the wine)

  5. browsing archived photos

  6. a new dish and/or a new dining experience

Because I wanted to finish it in less than 6 minutes, please let me tag YOU!

Yes YOU! In case your following/lurking/stalking and you happen to drop by my online thought bucket with 6 things in mind that make you happy, please grab the tag, post your 6 things then leave me a note. I would love to go check out your blog too!

I was such in hurry I forgot to post the tag. Ha! Here ya go:

Friday, May 29, 2009

Light and Airy and White

All girl closets have little black dresses.
Maybe it's just the boring me. 'Cuz I really find summer light whites sassy!
I love bright & bold summer prints too. But my white lights always make a summer comeback.
Plus they go well with psychedelic totes (and shoes).

They may come as a casual sundress
or a cotton top...
or a beach wrap.
As long as it's light and airy and white...
with few pretty details...
and some girly flare...
then it suits me just fine!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hello Acne!

I can trace a constellation on my face!
I think it's silly that in all 28 years of my life, it is now that I started having breakouts.
Shouldn't these have sprouted when I was pubescent or something?
Or when I barely got enough sleep in college?
Or during the days when pollution showered my public commute?
I know... I know.... adult acne...
I can do away with no make-up then.
Now I'm investing on good concealers.
I've been silently sour.
Because once I blog it aloud, I'm admitting it must be true.
Now here goes the rambles.
Cuz seriously...
In a couple of years from now, I'd be thirty you know?
So why now?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Oh, Canada!

We're in limbo. The husband and I may be in Canada today, but we quite frankly don't know where our shoes may take us tomorrow. We're exploring Canada this summer (while we're still here and all). I've noted theme parks, water parks and hiking trails. But we really have to go back to Niagara for a couple of days or so. I have to experience the energy of Clifton Hills once the sun sets... we were tourist day-guides for our California friends the last time. I want this time to be all about the husband and I.

I'm also brewing this one-week northeast long drive. The destination is Quebec City. This is what I'm looking forward to the most. I always loved leisure drives. The planning has kept me pretty busy (and excited) these past few days, especially since I want to make sure I cover all the pit stop goodness. I want it to be... uhmm... planned spontaneity? Ha! I'll just map out the major route and we'll see where the road will take us. The route is Kingston->Montreal->Quebec City->Ottawa. I'm still googl'ing for pit stops... but the Thousand Islands Cruise of Kingston is definitely day one.

I fell in love with Montreal's tourism web-highlights yesterday. Today, I'm moving on to Quebec City's after checking for possible Montreal hotels (or b&b's) to spend the night (or two... whatever goes)...

I can't wait for summer!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

American Idol Showdown... Counting the Minutes!

I cannot wait to download Kris Allen's version of Heartless. Gosh! I love his acoustic flavour to the song.

At this point, I'm counting the minutes 'till showtime. I know it's going to be an interestingly awesome finale.

Especially since they seem to be at different bands of the spectrum.

Adam is the type of artist you would have on when you feel like rockin' and ravin'. Or ranting... And Kris? Ohhh he's my car-cd kinda guy. I would just listen to him in my long drive to Quebec (and back) this summer (*dreamy*). I love liesure drives. I get a personal high when I cruise. Alone. Windows down, music on. Kris's music should fit this picture.

Tonight I'm hoping Adam would bring the shrieking down a notch and Kris would come up with something to top off his Heartless. I'm awed by Adam's clear vocals, actually. But I really adore the coolness of Kris Allen!

I wish I could vote from here...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Hugs to Margarita and Nicole

I've been a follower of Margarita's Ramblings of a Fab Brunette and Nicole's My Teacups in Peony for some time now. I love the fabulousness and the sincerity in the day-to-day musings of these girls!

Yesterday, they both sent me:

Wow! I got my first award! So this is how it feels like! My hugs to both of them.

The Rules
1) Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link.
2) Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

I can't come up with 15. But I'm still sharing the love.

These blogs amaze, amuse, make me laugh, touch my heart and complete my visit to the blogosphere everytime.

-Adventures in Newlywed
-In So Many Words
-Blissful Design
-Sweetness + Light
-Blog Goggles
-A Sassy Engineer
-Mommy's PlayPEN
-French Kiss
-Wife of a Wounded Marine

These blogs already received the Lovely Blog award. But I love following their blogs. Better late than never.

-Children of the 90's
-Iva Messy

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Me & My Geek!

When I was under the university spell, I fell for the bad-boy type. The one who swept me off my feet with the grandeur-of-it-all type! Entering the corporate bandwagon did me a complete 180. Until now, I couldn't find anything in common between the college-ex and the husband. Not that there should be any level of comparison. I'm just saying...

Yesterday's Three Takes episode on dating geeks had me jumping up and down. And I thought I was the only one drawn to geeks! Because apparently, geeks are chic! So I must not have fallen far behind.

My husband, actually, is not a geek geek, if I may say. I just found his strong engineering judgement and ethical management techniques admirable. Who wouldn't? He was the youngest engineering manager, he made the best reports, he supported the most difficult products, he executed the most challenging analysis, and he was looked up to by the newbies... like me, not so long ago.

And when a person who is known for his articulation, stutters, stammers and loses composure because you appear before him like his perfect Christmas morning, wouldn't your heart just melt?

Sure there may be geeky, superficial, shallow gaps here and there... but that's just what it is... superficial... shallow... some pop culture-influenced gaps in this materialistic era. They're of no importance to me. In fact, those vulnerabilities increase my fondness of him so much more (now if I could only send this blog to that person who had the most ghastly things to say about my engagement...)!

Because truly, after going beyond what the eye can see, I wouldn't trade anything in the world for my geek. Because when geeks love, they love so deep! And beneath my surface, I too, am some sort of a geek.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

Dear Mom,

The worst thing in me, living my teens...
was me, hating the mom in you.

The best thing in me, leaving my teens...
was me, loving the mom in you!

Happy Mother's Day, Mom!
I'm so glad to be 28!

I'm extending my mother's day greetings to FrankeeGee, Iva Messy, Margarita and PinayRichMom. I'm glad to have met you in the blogosphere! You're experiences in motherhood inspire me.

To Fiercely Fab Moma and Glitter & Glam Moma, whom I miss so bad.

And to all moms out there. I have nothing but admiration for all of you!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Accept? Decline?

It's funny how portable electronic systems
Otherwise known as laptops
Can bring huge distance
Between two people
On one couch.

Shall I ban laptops at home?
Because if I could bring in modular walls
And an electronics lab
The ambiance we got going now?
Perfectly suits our office.

Except that he's gaming.
And I'm facebooking.
But still.
The space. The laptops.
The cliche.
So near yet so far.

I should come up with an appropriate way
To break this silence.

Bing (bright idea)!
I am sending him an appointment request.
Through email.
In his outlook calendar.


American Idol. In 5 minutes.
Accept? Decline?

Your Wife in Stilettos

Dear Mum,

You must know that the well-roundedness of me,
I owe it all to you.

When my loud music annoyed your ears,
I was analyzing reverberation and acoustics.

When I broke your all expensive china,
I was testing air resistance vs. gravity.

When you talked and I didn't appear to listen,
I was attempting yoga and meditation.

When I expressed my side in our many arguments,
I was practicing logic and debate.

When I fit my wedding dress despite your many warnings,
I was favoring science over superstition.

When I hid your loud floral living room curtains,
I was mastering the art of interior design.

When my Dear Mom posts flood your inbox,
It's just me. Missin' you.

Dear Mom,

In the episodes of my life I wasn't very proud of,
I remained flawless in your eyes.

In my disobedience,
You didn't judge.

In my failures,
You believed in second chance.

In my impertinence,
You swallowed reason.

As I pushed your limit,
You increased your threshold.

I guess there isn't a love so great
As a mother's for her child.

You rock, Mom!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

spring blooms

i channelled the toddler photographer in me through flora inspiration from rbg's tulip celebration. i just love tulips!

do i have the eye? not bad for a first time try?

constructive comments and tips most welcome!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

rain check

the husband left to work overtime.
did he just bail on me?
coz it. sucks.

i thought yesterday's new pair of shoes would pass as bribe.
well it just. does. not.

on second thought, he owes me big time today... i'm charging by the hour.
so a few more pairs shouldn't hurt now, should it (evil smirk)?
revenge is lovely when you take it on shoes (grins ear to ear in satisfaction)!

Friday, May 1, 2009

It's hard to find people who will love you no matter what. I was lucky enough to find three of them. -Carrie, Sex and the City

Moving into this new city took a toll on my social life. I miss my girls... I extremely do. We worked together, you see, Fiercely Fab Moma, Glitter & Glam Moma, Shopaholic Wife and I. So another day at work was never another day of work. It was hours of chit-chats and giggles, bags and shoes, make-up and men. We had the most fabulous time... in the mall, at the beach, with the karaoke, over dinner, over booze, in long drives. Girl talk was at its best- bad times became good, good times became better.

We had our little pink bubble.

It burst a year ago.

Life branched in different directions for all four of us. I never discerned the vastness of the oceans, until it sailed us apart.

When I think about it, I realize how much I've given up to start this new life. But life must go on, I guess.

Then again, information technology has made the world smaller everyday. Knowing that the girls are mouse-click away... that should be my band-aid relief.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

love at first sight

26-inch wheels: check
ergonomic suspension seats: check
curve appeal: check
basket: check
seriously not from the youth bike rack: check
seriously not from the youth bike rack: check
seriously not from the youth bike rack: check

oh... and did i mention this is not a youth bike? : )

Monday, April 27, 2009

Having Kids Can End Marital Bliss?!

Is this going to scare the shoes off me?

Researchers at the University of Denver published an 8-year study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology that 90% of 218 couples experienced deterioration of marital satisfaction after the first child was born.

I don't have a take on this one. We're still planning for our first kid late this year or early next. I just figured this was a rather interesting share.

Full article:

Friday, April 24, 2009

And the Search Goes on for My Perfect Girly Bike...

I want a bike. Not just a bike. I want a girly urban bike. Dainty, pastel, long slim handle bars, rattan basket... the whole shebang. Good for my heart. Good for our earth. I have scoured the city for my perfect girly bike... to no avail. : (

On this side of the border, people celebrate outdoors once the mercury hits 20degC (77degF). In spring. Tomorrow's forecast is giving me the itch to continue my search for my perfect girly bike.

You see what pains me, with my height, the only bike that fits me... is nothing looking like this:
Why oh why are these bikes not deigned for a girl standing 5 feet tall? I can't bike with my stilettos on!

Can I?

Guess Factory Store & Banana Republic Coupons

Posted just in time. This coupon may be used until May 2, 2009 in Guess Factory Stores both in the US and Canada. I got e-mail subscription from the Guess Factory Store cashier in Burloak after some purchases.

This one, I got from my Banana Republic subscription (to subscribe: It may be used only in Canada.

Earth Day Freebie

Did I tell you that I got this free reusable shopping bag last Earth Day? Thanks to my Longo's Thank You card.

I find it too cute to bag seafood and meat (those are the only items I buy in Longo's). All the more reason to use it.

I heard they gave away roast chicken some time ago. I'm thinking it was before I got my Thank You card.

I should have posted this last Tuesday for the Longo's Thank You cardholders out there. Too late the hero.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Two Week Old Blogger

It has been two weeks.
As I follow the many thoughts, rants, raves...
blogging is now becoming part
of the inertia that is my life.

The best thing for me I guess,
In phrases sometimes so few...
I get to discover a world unfold
in someone else's shoes.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

How I Cut Our Electricity Bill in Half

I simply made it a practice to unplug (not just switch off) appliances when not in use. When they are still plugged-in, even if you push the remote off, they consume stand-by power.

But since unplugging so many appliances before I leave for work became tedious, I got me surge suppressors (some call it surge protectors). Put simply, it looks like an extension cord with a switch, so I use them in areas of our home where I can plug together idled appliances. I have one in our living room- where our tv, home theatre system, wii and cable receiver are all plugged in; one in our bedroom- for our tv, dvd player, and cable receiver; and one in our office table- for our modem, wireless router and printer. My surge suppressors not only protect my appliances from voltage transients, it also made unplugging a whole lot safer and easier for me. Because rather than unplugging X number of appliances directly from voltage outlets, I simply turn off three power switches.

Good for our wallets. Good for our earth. Let's make everyday, not just today, Earth Day.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Should We Join Bank Accounts After Marriage?

Dr Phil's quick take on joint account after marriage - "It depends." It depends on the couple's lifestyle, financial attitude and principles.

I learned from experience that when you money merge, logistics are simpler. However, since every financial activity becomes visible to each other, transparency is required. I found that this can bring a deeper sense of openness and honesty in a husband-wife relationship.

Maintaining separate accounts, on the other hand, celebrates freedom and independence. I learned, also from experience, that contributing responsibly to a 'household account', while maintaining your own personal savings gives you a sense of autonomy and accomplishment as individuals.

Yes, the hubby and I experimented on both to discover what better suits us. My quick take? There shouldn't be any hard rule on whether to join accounts after marriage or not. You should go with whatever works harmoniously, as a couple, in your family. Money is an aspect of married life we should discuss in a healthy open-minded manner. After all, whichever road we couples take, everyone's just working on the same goal- situating our families in a good financial position.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Love Languages

The recent Lenten season was timely to re-read pages of Gary Chapman's The Five Love Languages. This book was recommended by our Pastor to supplement our pre-nuptial counselling sessions two years ago.

According to the book, there are five love languages we use to express our love and feel loved.
1. Words of Affirmation
2. Quality Time
3. Receiving Gifts
4. Acts of service
5. Physical touch

To each its own. Especially in giving and accepting love. The fundamental concept was for me to discover my partner's love language, then leverage it to express my affection towards him. This way, he feels loved according to his definition of being loved, hence making his love tank is full. The objective is to continually use his love language to keep his love tank full. Otherwise, he may start looking for 'alternatives' to compensate for his half-empty love tank.

After discovering each other's love language, I can say that our love tanks have been kept to a healthy level so far. But our marriage is young that we need to constantly be reminded... If we don't fill each other's love tank up the right way, someone else might just will.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Can I Substitute Butter With Margarine in Chocolate Chip Cookies?

With my hubbie's cholesterol level higher than normal, I had to find ways to pull in more nutrition value to our meals. Since butter is cholesterol in a bar, I had to test if margarine can substitute butter for baking cookies.

I searched for I Can't Believe It's Not Butter baking sticks, but couldn't find any here in Canada (yet). So I used Imperial. I tried it on Chocolate Chip, Butterscotch Oatmeal and Chocolate Crinkle Cookies.

Yes. It is a good substitute. My margarine cookies actually taste as good. I noticed, though, that they're less creamier, less oilier, and a bit saltier. These I can live with as long as they're healthier.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My Recession-proof Grocery Solution

During our first few married months, I'd pick up grocery items in random, I'd care less about prices, and I'd do the grocery shopping wherever, whenever! But after coming up with my grocery shopping system, I end up buying only the things I need, making me spend less time and money. How'd I do it?

1. Set up a grocery list. I have a notepad and pen in my kitchen. So every time I run out of kitchen supply, yes even in the middle of my cooking, I can easily jot it down on my list. I buy only what's listed. Nothing is forgotten. Shopping time is cut short.

2. Set up next week's meal plan. That way, I buy only the ingredients I'm surely gonna use.

3. Set up a grocery frequency. During my carefree grocery days, the more time I spend in the grocery, the more time and money I end up spending. I reduced my grocery frequency from thrice/twice a week to once a week and learned 1 week is a good duration for properly stored fruits, vegetables, dairy and bread to remain fresh. Saturday was my grocery day last winter. But with summer just around the corner, I changed my schedule to Tuesday to free our weekends for travel.

4. Find a price-friendly supermarket. I used to grocery hop, thinking I could save more by buying sale items in different stores. But on top of burning more gas money, I end up so exhausted that grocery shopping has become a dreaded half-day chore! So I gave my loyalty to Longo's Fairview for the quality of their fresh food, and No Frills Brant for their reasonable prices. Store loyalty cut my shopping time too, because as I got accustomed to the store layout, I spent less time searching.

5. Get a points card. Since I frequent Longo's and No Frills for our groceries, I got myself a Longo's Thank You Card and a President's Choice Mastercard. They're free. Plus, with my points accumulating with my purchases, my next bag of groceries will be free!

Monday, April 13, 2009

MY HOT BUY: The Netbook

I have a love-hate relationship with my Notebook. I think I'd dump it for a Netbook in a heartbeat.

Three laptop computers in a two-head household seems impractical at the moment. But it hasn't stopped my going back to Best Buy time and time again. There's only one reason why I'm salivating over this Netbook - It's computing portability at its best (so far). I love my bags and I love-hate my Notebook. Having a computer in my bag, without actually feeling it in my bag.... and that's my perfect Christmas morning!

I totally get that in order to achieve such small geometry, functionality will be compromised. It is underpowered, it runs on last year's technology, and it doesn't have a dvd drive. But since this wife in stilettos have mediocre personal computing needs (and Vista has its way of getting to her nerves sometimes), I think it would suit her just fine.

Any regretful Netbooks owners out there?

Some technical specifications:

What is a Push Present?

Push presents were discussed on The Mom Show the other day and the idea was all entirely new to me. Apparently, recent gift-giving tradition in North America entitles wives to receive push presents from their hubbies after childbirth. And these gifts are not meant to be wrapped in frugal packages, mind you. They customarily come in forms of luxe and glitter.

Though I feel that the miracle of life should transcend all forms of lavish gifts, it's a gift I wish to open one day of course! After all, I don't mind accepting a memento that would always make me remember how I was appreciated for getting past the hardships of pregnancy and childbirth....... especially if it comes in 24 karats! Wink wink!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Did My Marital Bliss Ruin My Career?

The longest vacation I had in my 6-year career was during my wedding and honeymoon. Coming back to work, my honeymoon bliss became heroin, shaking my professional performance to shambles. The newly-married wife in me reasons it's normal and acceptable. The engineer in me thinks otherwise. The dilemma was to achieve an agreement between the two.

What did I do? I flashed three faces in my head.

1. My husband's. This is an excerpt from my wedding vow: "I will work by your side to achieve the things we value and dream of." For a couple starting anew, a career was fundamental in making goals come true.
2. Everyone else's. Because I'm a firm believer that you will continue to be blessed as long as you continue to be a blessing to others.
3. Mine, of course! After all, bidding goodbye to my career is bidding goodbye to vacation and shopping altogether. Now if that doesn't give me a good shake, I don't know what will : ).

Can marital bliss ruin a career? Personally, if the bliss can be steered in the right direction, it can be a catalyst of motivation. So every time I feel work's stresses getting to me, the wife in me would flash those faces in my head, so that the engineer in me could channel the motivation to productivity.