Monday, January 25, 2010

This Old House

I was looking to drop by the office of one of my suppliers when I chanced upon this random old building. It was the only building of its kind on the main street.. well, the only building left I assume.

I've never been a fan of classic Philippine architectural designs. It's only been recently that I've been able to appreciate it's beauty. No idea why; perhaps because I've always felt there was a general lack of warmth in such houses? And because I immediately associate such design elements with the earthly elements of Filipino folklore. All it has taken me to see beyond its possible creepiness is a few light and air infusing windows and big furniture pieces with overstuffed cushions. Lol.
But yes, back to this house. It was a rather sorry site, and personally, what I believe is a microcosm of how conservation of Philippine heritage is in the Philippines. Not enough people care enough maybe? Or perhaps maybe because in a 3rd world country, other necessities are more of a priority? What bugs me even more is that when they tear stuff like this down, they put up real corniness in it's place. It's rather irritating.

Anyway, behind all of it's wear and tear, you can almost see small glimpses of what this place must have looked like back during it's heyday. What a beaut huh? I especially love the trimming of the roof awning, the design under the awning, the modern red brick and stain glass on the ground floor, and the classic window treatment up on the second floor.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Reminiscing & Redecorating

(left side of sala: before)

Helped my mom do some major redecorating in the sala today. Major because we moved around big pieces of furniture (ie: Mom's opium bed which we haven't moved from its place since we first got here 13 years ago.. lol) and pretty much reconfigured what the area looked like.

(right side of sala: & the brainstorming begins!)

Moving furniture around was like reacquainting myself with old friends. Some of these pieces have been with us since time immemorial (and memorial! lol). Made me think about the many homes I've lived in over the last 27 years and the furniture that has come (and gone) in those years.
(left side of sala: getting there)

The biggest home we lived in was on a 1,500 square foot lot. We've downsized to maybe 2/3s of that today. Naturally, the number of furniture pieces have shrunk in number too, though ironically, unplanned. Before we moved back home, we sent ahead a 15 cubic meter shipment that we stored till we found a home; the warehouse burned down before we had a chance to move out any of our un-insured furniture. It was a pseudo-blessing in disguise as all of our stuff combined would not have fit into our current home anyway. What followed was a long ongoing financial battle, one which my family still fights today. One of the casualties at the height of the personal crisis was having to sell much of our furniture to help us get by. It was heartbreaking for the family to see many pieces go, especially for Mom. In retrospect though, when Mom gets sad about it, I tell her to look around, because we still got a whole lotta crap in our house. Lol.
(right side of sala: making some headway)

Its just funny how attached we can get to things. I mean human attachment is complex enough already. We just stress ourselves out more by become unintentionally attached to things, even when you know you shouldn't.

(right side of sala: tadah!)

Anyway, back to our current sala. It was fun redecorating with Mum! Plus the weather was blissfully cool and windy which made the rearranging all the more fun. Few more additions / changes we want to make but all in all, the sala came out well, serving both form and function! :)
(left side of sala: tadah! tadah! tadah!)

Can't wait to have my own place :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Back On Stage!

So it's all set; jumping last minute into a show next month.

Was excited to see my script. I love getting a new script- reading it over for the first time, getting to know my character for the first time.. even highlighting my lines is such a joy for me.

It's a short skit (about 15 minutes long apparently) and an ensemble piece. The past shows I've done with them were either monologues or two-person plays, so this will be something different!

Curious about who the other cast members are. They've had a few more rehearsal together so I'm hoping I have immediate rapport with them off and on stage.


Miraculous Money Matters 2

I first blogged about about money here.

And I still do believe in miraculously money matters. That even when you don't think you have the money to cover your monthly expenses, opportunities for money making (for the most part anyway), unexpectedly arise.

At the moment, my current / upcoming financial responsibilities are at an all time high and yet gratefully, despite this, I'm actually making enough money for the month to cover my bills. Just last week I was banging my head trying to figure out how I'd earn enough income this month, so this is actually surprise out-of-the-blue money!

On the same note, this is the most money I've made in a while. Which is wonderful! But on a sadder note, I'm a little glum thinking about how all that money could have gone to my savings (& a little splurge for me!) instead of my bills.

Lol, oh wells. This is temporary anyway. Hopefully the next time I blog about money, it's I'm trying to figure out how and where to spend my money because I have too much of it ;)

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Next few weeks are going to be REAL busy for me. The project that I've spent the last few months preparing for is fast approaching and I'm feeling the pressure! It's my first big project after work with my old company. I feel like I'm about to take a big test that will decide my future, where I feel it will prove (or disprove) my capacity to do something of this nature. There's still a number of things I need to do in preparation for the project; haven't even begun to think about how I'm actually going to execute it!

If all goes well, I'll jump into two new projects right after. One is literally, RIGHT after what I'm working on now, a short freelance project for a new client which is also big in it's own right.. to me anyway. I'm nervous I won't perform, that I'll be too tired to focus and that I won't do a good job. A few days after, I'll do a show, which means at one point between now and then, I need to have rehearsed, memorized and gotten my role down pat.

I feel old insecurities and bad habits bubbling to the surface; common when I'm faced with something very uncomfortable. I procrastinate REAL BADLY in hopes that it will delay the inevitable. I stay up late to delay the coming of the next day, but then want to sleep all day. Not really a good mix with an already busy schedule if you ask me.

I also get I am probably making this bigger than it actually is and that I know I just need to breathe, focus and just get things done one day at a time, one step at a time. That in doing so, I cut out the unnecessary stress I'm creating for myself.

So here's me grabbing life by the balls and just diving into my work. It's good for me, I know it. Wish me luck!

BSP Jamboree on Mt Makiling

At the start of the year, I dropped by Mt. Makiling with a friend of mine to check out the 26th Asia Pacific Scout Jamboree. While Jamborees of this nature are apparently smaller in attendance, I was shocked to know that some 14,000 delegates from around the world had set up camp over the new year break to participate in this event. I only stayed for an hour or two so I didn't get the full effect of what 14,000 looks like, but it was fun exploring the groups and seeing all these kids milling about looking like they were having so much fun.

It's a week long event chock full of activity after activity after activity. Fun activities mind you where you learn new skills, make some friends and have some fun. Nonetheless, I'm glad it was them and not me. I love the outdoors, but only because I am quite content sleeping in a bed with a roof over my head. Lol.

I was a girl scout back in elementary school. Actually let me rephrase, I was a daisy girl scout! Daisy girl scout because brownie girl scouts who eventually become girl scout girl scouts. I remember not enjoying it so much, which is why I lasted only about a year.

But anyway, just wanted to post a few of the pictures I took while i was there...

We went up to Makiling to visit my friend's little brother & sister
who participated in the jamboree.

Love the BSP (boy scouts of the philippine) uniforms.. they wear these cool salakot hats..

.. as well as these lovely wooden carabao slides that cover the knot of their neckerchiefs!

Absolutely no idea what EXACTLY this is. I just saw it, snapped a photo of it and had to run off. I assume it's a coconut container of sorts fashioned to look like a scout from the Philppines? Lol.

I assume manong was a chaparone for the Vietnam contingent? Hee :)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Back On Stage?

Made a small return to the stage 2 years ago after I auditioned for a show produced by this new theater and events group. I've been quite lucky with them as since that first show, I've been involved in a number of their shows, both off and on stage.

This year, I didn't get around to audition for their annual theater event due to a personal conflict in schedule. I reasoned that I needed to focus on what was (and is currently still!) on my plate, and was convinced I couldn't do both.

A few weeks after the auditions (that I didn't attend), I started feeling differently. I planned on getting in touch with them and letting them know that I wanted to help out with the show, as a actor or otherwise. Though I dwelt on it for a while, I kept putting it off. I eventually gave up on the idea as with the show dates fast approaching, I thought it would be too makapal for me to ask.

Today though, I randomly bumped into the group's president. The first thing she said to me after a hug was "I need you!". She told me how she was looking for someone to fill a role and had thought of me. She figured since I didn't audition, I was busy with the job I was telling her I'd have by now during last year's show. She put the message out into the universe in hopes it would conspire to help her.. and conspire it did! For the both of us!

Now I have no idea if it will work out logistically; we still need to talk specifics. Not that I want to turn a deaf ear to opportunity knocking but I'm a bit overwhelmed as it is right now with what's going on in my life. Hopefully all it will take to get me through the next few weeks is diligent focus, hard work, baby steps, self confidence and prayers.

Nonetheless, I'm thrilled! The surprise source of income is as welcome as it is needed, as is the chance to pour my energies into a creative outlet I've always loved. Acting freaks me out as much as it exhilarates me so it's definitely an opportunity to stretch my realm of self-awareness. I always come out of a show feeling like I know myself just a little bit more.

So fingers crossed!

(photo of myself and a fellow actress in a show I did last year; taken by S.Purdue)

Friday, January 8, 2010

2009: A Review (Part II)

2009 was also a year of growth.

Worked on my health;
celebrated 1 year of being cigarette free,

gave up sweets for 1/2 the year,

.. and started getting exercise whenever and wherever i could.

Fed my soul through long time staples such as art & giving back;
took photos like a madwoman of random beautiful & interesting
things i wanted to remember & share;

went back to the theater and did a few shows plus saw a lot of great productions;

did my share of getting my hands creating...

... and of course music! (picture taken from A.Salazar FB album)

(renovate to educate dec 09)

(tree planting @ intramuros jan 09)

(volunteer work for ondoy oct/nov 09)

A lot of random but significant things also happened in 2009;

changed careers...

sang for cory aquino's final mass (manila) & memorial mass (boston)...

watched friends make life-long commitments...

and was even the maid of honor at a wedding!

And how can I close 2009 without mentioning the greatest blessings in my life? My friends and my family.

With the usual suspects such as my friends from my current choir,

and kiddie friends from my old choir.

I visited friends I grew up with in Jakarta

and in Manila,

and was visited by many who came back to visit!

And as much as they drive me crazy, I spent a lot of
time with my family; most especially my
beautiful, twin tower sisters.

So with that, I officially close my 2009 and dive headfirst into my 2010, excited, open and ready to take it on.

I plan on having a fabulously amazing year. Can't wait!