Where the raindrops as they're falling tell a story...

Monday, June 30, 2008

i think i've changed.

and i have no idea if it's for the better. it's not sad. i just get apathetic at times. if apathetic is what you call the way i never cared.

ten years ago, i would've bitten your head off and gleefully chomped on your bones if you ever as much moved my coffee cup. now, i look at you and think of myself ten years ago. hah!

alright, so it was a pity to go down that low, but i was a slave to my emotions back then. i lived and breathed (got that!) with every swing of my mood. i was confrontational; to some degree, i still am. but i no longer exert the effort if i see there's no point in doing so. because i can only expend myself that much, and i choose to use that energy on things much more important in my life. i'd still receive you if ever you choose to open the confrontation line with me, though. heck, i might even offer you my homemade butter cookies. just don't expect me to apologize for being misunderstood.

priorities change through time. mine has changed a great deal. and if you're somebody who'd need emotional maintenance from me all the time, i might back off, do some reality checking, and ultimately, shrug and smile. but oh, if you're worth it, surely i'd never mind going an extra mile. but here's the thing. those who are worthy will never give me any reason to go that unnecessary extra mile. i don't know. i guess in the end, i just don't care about trivialities anymore.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Itsy-bitsy spider

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

He what?!

I had to brag about this. Ah-huh, the HUSBAND COOKED!!!

This is big deal, because really, no matter how hard I coaxed, bribed, and cajoled in the past, I can never make this man cook. Bad experience, he said. And he was sure he’d end up ruining the dish. Imagine my delight and surprise when he volunteered to make the pasta the other night! I had to sit down for a teleconference and there were a lot of preparations to be done, so there was virtually no time for me to cook. The instructions I gave to him were as simple as don’t overcook shrimp, just cook it until pinkish; don’t fry basil, add it towards the end; salt lightly. And look what he whipped up:

Here’s his recipe:

  • 500 grams linguine, cooked as directed, set aside
  • olive oil (as preferred)
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated with microplane zester (Don’t do it, you’ll burn your garlic. Funny story. The help told him I do garlic that way. She mixed up garlic with ginger. No, I don’t zest garlic, I micro-grate ginger.)
  • onions, chopped (this is totally optional)
  • 1 cup shrimp, skinned, chop them if they’re bigger than half a pinkie
  • handful of basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • grated parmesan to serve (optional)
  1. Cook pasta, set aside.
  2. In a heated pan, pour olive oil, about 2 tbsp or as desired.
  3. Sauté garlic and onions.
  4. Add shrimp. Cook until pinkish.
  5. Add basil. Mix and turn off heat. The basil will wilt with the remaining heat of the pan.
  6. Toss well to coat pasta.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Add parmesan if desired.
*me proud wifey*

Take me to HOME COOKING tab

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Wanted: Househelp

When we decided to live on our own and purchase a house, I was confident we can keep it clean and orderly with a minimum of help. True to what I professed, we we’re able to keep the house clean and orderly. The help only visited us once a week for a general cleaning, plus heavy lifting stuff I couldn’t do. It worked perfectly for us. That was when there were only two of us.

With the baby on the way, and with me suffering morning sickness throughout the day, a permanent househelp became a need. That was when the hunt (and the headache) began.

Househelp 1 was a taciturn type. Or at least that’s the trait she wanted us to see. She moved rather slower than I’m used to. Ok, so I’m used to doing things fast if I can’t do them any faster. I believe there’s no use dilly-dallying if you can finish it half the time and use the other half resting instead. I am totally OK with her taking an afternoon nap. I even encouraged it. Just show me the floor’s clean and the furniture are dusted. It was until I found out that she hasn’t been cleaning beneath the couches. That I can still tolerate. Then she asked to spend the night at her brother’s but did not come back after about a week. That was just too much, so we let her go. She went alright, with my blue J.Lo watch.

Househelp 2 was an unintentional comic. I forgot what her real name was, but she came by the name of Tagala. I later realize that her neighbors gave her that name as a truncated form of the word taga-lasang. In the vernacular, it means someone who lives in the forest, or any place remote of civilization. I was told that when she was little, she was too afraid of the passing buses that each time she’d hear one coming, she’d climb the coconut tree. It’s an anecdote that up to now still brings laughter in our dinner table. Yet, Tagala was the most hardworking househelp I’ve seen. You always see her doing something everytime. One time when all the chores were done, and all the nooks and crannies were wiped clean, she complained that the chores in the house were too light. I thought I hit the jackpot. Then her jealous husband called demanding her to come home.

Househelp 3 was an angst-y teen. We put her to school for the sole purpose of helping someone get a better education. Her night classes finished at 9 pm. She won’t be home until 11 pm, and the school is a good 5 minutes walk from the house. We later found out that she’s been keeping a boyfriend. She had been neglecting most of her duties because of this. Early on, I discovered she also has a knack of going through my stuff and use my lotions, moisturizers, etc. She also dispensed them in a smaller container and brought these to her room. One day, I left my digicam on video mode. She must have had a very confusing time why she can’t get a decent framed pic whenever she hit the button, because too many attempts were recorded on video. Not contented, she went infront of the mirror and positioned the camera giving the viewer a perfect view of who’s holding the cam while it was recording. The evidence of her kalikutan is just overwhelming. After a year of enduring her antics, and feeling like having a teenage daughter full of angst, off we let her go.

Househelp 4 is the total opposite of H3. She speaks really slow, always smiling but laughs really loud, it’s sometimes disturbing. She’s really polite and eager to do things her way. That’s just her thing. She wants to do things her way without asking first, which of course lead to mistakes, most of the time. Dai, hand me the zester. She’ll give me the can opener. I almost blew my top the other day for piled up mistakes, which lead me to lecture, in a very forceful voice, how asking questions is never wrong and we so encourage it in the household. Avoid mistakes, ask questions, I always tell her. From then on, she’s been asking questions, and I always compliment her for it. Then one morning she told us she’s going back to her previous job. The toddler she was taking cared of isn’t eating and is always looking for her. We were ready to find another replacement yet again when she changed her mind. She’s staying with us. Yes, she’s still with us and is currently our househelp.

Everything’s OK and working, then Xofia’s nanny had to go home.

Right now, Xofia’s under the care of her very generous Auntie Han when Daddy and Mommy are at work. We’re looking into training H4 as nanny since she has had experience there and we think Xofia likes her. Still that leaves us lacking a househelp. If anybody asks, I'm looking for a househelp. If you happen to know one, contact me, PUH-LEASE??? Just look at those eyes. :-P

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Much ado about a name

Tash here talked about the delimma of naming her baby girl Athalia. Which reminds me, we've had our share. My daughter's full name is Xofia Enia. These names are from my maternal and paternal grandmas. Xofia is from Sofronia, and Enia is from Arsenia. Xofia is a Greek name which means wisdom and Enia is of Scottish origin which means jewel/fiery. The moment I said those names out loud, I instantly fell in love with them. They tasted good to the mouth and left a satisfying sound to the lips. At least, that's how a mother felt. I just knew it was perfect for her.

Then there's the family name that we had to deal with. It was later realized that if we were to write her initials down, it would spell X.E.S., the reverse of the word sex. And you know how teenagers (and some people with maturity levels to that of a 13-year-old) react upon mention of the word. If you thought you could explain that the word has other meanings, think again. The first thing that will come to mind will always be what we all are thinking right now. It's just how the human mind functions. Especially the teenagers. At about this age group would my baby start forming her own self-image. Mostly developed due to a lot of factors, but one major contributing factor to how we perceive ourselves is the society's opinion on us, on things that we do, against the norms, within standards. In a teenager's world, that translates to her peers' opinion.

We tried different combinations just so we won't end up with a second name that starts with an E. I suggested we place Enia before Xofia -- still sounded good to me, anyway. But her daddy won't have any of it. He so wanted the name Xofia to be written first. He had his reasons, and I also agreed with them.

Her Ninang Ayin was quick to point out that I was wrong. That Xofie's initial would be X.E.D.S. -- because hey, she herself was never A.Q., but A.M.Q. Being the mother of a baby girl, I should impose upon her to use my maiden name, that it should not be taken for granted just because we live in a patriarchal world. Cool point. Takes out the feminist in me.

And for whatever it's worth, if my baby will be ridiculed because of her initials, I think that she should not feel bad about it. She must realize that she can do a lot of things with an initial as unique as hers. Her imagination is her only limit. And like Tash, if my baby is ridiculed by the people around her because she happens to have funny initials, then I think that crowd needs to grow up.

Heck, I know she'd just throw her head back and flip those locks behind her shoulders and walk away from that shallow crowd. True to her name, I'd say.


Friday, June 13, 2008

Xofia turned 11

...months old yesterday. Aside from waking up in her sleep to grope for her blinky and with eyes closed, stuff it in her mouth, she's learned to stand up using whatever support she can grab from around her. She'd then flail her arms around for a good 2 seconds then slump back on her butt if she's too late to grab something for support. Good progress, if you ask me :-P

But here's my thing. Used to be that whenever we get home from work, the husband and I would get the same amount of attention and giggle from her. Lately, she'd just throw a little smile my way which is no more than perfunctory, and proceed to crane her neck to check outside for her daddy. Once her daddy opens the front door, she'd jump triumphantly and giggle loudly. She'd then follow her daddy with her eyes wherever he goes while I feel dejected in the corner. What happened here?

It all started when I went to accompany my mother to Manila (which btw, renewed my vow to never live there even if I was paid to, the traffic is beyond terrible it made me miss Cebu sorely) for two days. I don't know what my husband did when I was away, but I'm pretty sure that would explain Xofia's behavior. I am so investigating. :-P

Anyway, my sister kidnapped the camera for their Moalboal trip. After grave threats of you-better-get-a-good-picture-of-xofia-first, which she more than willingly complied, the camera went with her, and yes, the pictures are still in the memory card. I forgot another grave threat of you-better-download-the-pics-first. So, in lieu of Xofie's picture showing off her new skill of standing up, here's the scrapbook I made for when she was two months old. (I know, I know, I'm 9 months late). I happen to look back how, not so long ago, she can't even crawl no matter how much she'd try. Time flies, and all these are happening so fast. I pray I can hold on to every moment and capture them but I'm afraid it's not as easy as I thought it would be. Hope you enjoy this anyway inasmuch as I enjoyed making it :-)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

This is what happens

...when House Season 4 Finale refuses to playback in my VLC player.

And then I got super uneasy with the clutter of wires, usb cables, and electronic gadgets sitting behind my laptop. Ok, I can't see them, but I know they're there, and the thought of them lying there so unorganized and ugly just unsettles me.

And when a girl feels like that, she prettifies things. Her hand would itch, and she'd start grabbing scissors and patterned papers and ribbons and do something about it. This is the solution I came up with:

... a sturdy box that can stand relative wear and tear, wrapped in pretty, green paper, tied with a thin, shiny ribbon. The gadgets and cables are organized in individual pouches inside. See, she opens pretty, too:

She'll stay behind my laptop area on the table where it's easy for me to grab whatever I need. Now, she even matches my file organizer I did awhile back from a cereal box:

House MD can wait while I wonder why I'm calling my gadget storage box a "she".

I know, it's so gay. That's the whole point :-P

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Ending summer

Last Sunday, the family visited Vistamar. Not really as an extension of my birthday celebration, though it looked like it was, but mainly because we wanted to enjoy what's left of summer. Summer here has been raining most of the time, Mr. Sun hasn't had the time to shine. Though I love the rain, letting Xofia swim in a cold pool is just something I'm not ready for her to do. So that specific Sunday, I prayed for Mr. Sun to show up. And show up, he did.

I leave you the slideshow of the pictures taken that day. It's actually Xofia's slideshow. The rest of us remain the humble supporting cast, and most often than not, yours truly being the photographer.

Enjoy what's left of your summer!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Lakbayan: How much of the PI have you been to?

Ugh. I so need to travel. I have destinations (as if daghan!!!) mapped out for the rest of the year, but hey, a grade this low? I gotta do something about it! Or maybe Cebu is just so good a place that I want to explore my own province first, the rest of the Philippine Islands can wait. I think that reasoning is better. Don't you? :-P

I've been tagged by Mckhoii. And I'm bookmarking the Lakbayan site to update (my grade) everytime I go somewhere in the future ;-)

My Lakbayan grade is C-!

How much of the Philippines have you visited? Find out at Lakbayan!

Created by Eugene Villar.

So how much of the Philippines have you travelled? Add your links here:

1) mind bubbles, 2) may 3) VANITY KIT 4) SOMETHING PURPLE 5) A DETOUR 6) Big Eyed Gal 7) The Chronic Shopper 8) My Inner Thoughts Revealed 9) DeCaFFeiNaTed 10) BaReFooTeD Me 11) Puzzled Me 12) joanjoyce 13) Mckhoii 14) Purpled Sky 15) Your link here


Try this, guys! It's fun :-D


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