Archives for July 2012

Pretty Shoes for My Ugly Feet

I am not a shoe person because I have ugly feet.  I would often say that they are like carabao’s feet. No offense meant towards carabaos.  Their feet were made for the tough terrain. Hey, maybe mine is designed for that, too!  But I live in a city with paved roads and I walk beside people with pretty feet. I am only human. I get jealous of their pretty feet.

I seldom shop for shoes. I shop when I NEED one. Just like I did when I first visited The Fort area.  I wore my office shoes. (read: black leather shoes) while walking around. It was not comfortable so I bought the cheapest sneakers I could find. And the brand is called… (drum roll, please) Evans!  Hehe! I learned not to judge the shoes with its name because it has been 4.5 years since  bought the shoes and I still use them. Durable shoes. <3

Sometimes I buy shoes because they are cheap. I found these being sold in the sidewalk for P100. These must have been sold cheaper somewhere else.  I really don’t know if these are fake versions of branded ones. I have limited knowledge on shoe brands.  I bought these because they are made of rubber so they are soft on the feet.

The gray shoes are mine. My cousin wore her black flats.

I like traveling  and I travel light.   I often find myself looking for ways where I can still wear comfortable shoes and be able to pack them well. I bring one pair of shoes and  1 pair of slippers.  There was one trip I completely ditched my shoes and wore slippers the entire trip.  If only I have bought Suelas before that trip, I would not have exposed my ugly feet to the world. Haha! I learned of this brand years ago from Patty Laurel‘s blog but I never really got around ordering a pair until last July when they put some of their shoes on SALE. Yes, the operative word is SALE. The word makes my heart beat a little faster.  (Oh, I am such a cheapskate.) I placed an order and after a series of email since I my order confirmation got sent to my spam folder, I am a proud owner of these comfortable  shoes.

The shoes come with their own bag for easy packing when traveling.

These are foldable flats but these are not the flimsy kind I found in one store. Thick cushioned soles.   It was comfortable.

I wore my shoes when I had ninang (godmother) duties early this month. My cousin whispered that I have nice shoes. Thanks, Suelas!

There is another shoe brand that I have been following lately. It is called Lulu Swing.Their shoes are so cute. My ugly feet wants to try them. I think it is a new brand because they still have a few designs on their portfolio but they are slowly releasing previews of their future designs. They showed this one early this week and I love them.

shimmy

If they are going to release this before my birthday, I am thinking of buying a pair as a birthday gift to myself. I just wish that my size 8 ugly feet will be as pretty as these sandals.

Oh my! I am turning into a shoe lover. I am now confused which pair to get. I love that these two brands (Suelas and Lulu Swing) are developed in the Philippines. I believe the brands were founded by young entrepreneurs. Yay! To get updates from these two interesting brands, follow them on Twitter and like them on Facebook. Suelas Website: http://www.suelasonline.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/suelasonline Twitter: http://twitter.com/suelasonline Lulu Swing Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/luluswing Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/lulu_swing

 

P.S. This is NOT a sponsored post.

My Thoughts on Dolphy

I know this is 15 days late but I wrote this anyway.

When the Department of Tourism launched the “It’s more fun in the Philippines” campaign early this year,  I wrote this in reply to a tweet.

 

I was thinking about the Philippine sitcoms I enjoyed: “Home Along Da Riles”, “Okay Ka Fairy Ko”, “Abangan ang Susunod na Kabanata”, “Ober da Bakod”, etc. I wish I could say I enjoyed “John en Marsha”. My parents did. Once in a while, my father would blurt out, “Kaya ikaw, Kat, magsumikap ka.” It is the line Dely Atay-atayan’s character would often tell  John (Dolphy).

Little did I know that I would go back to the same nostalgia I felt 6 months after I wrote that twitter reply. Dolphy died in the evening of July 10. Twitter was buzzing because there were two celebrities who announced his death on  Twitter before media did. Because of the confusion, a lot of people wrote their condolences and retracted them and wrote them again.

I remember an episode on “The Newsroom“. (Yes, it is my new favorite show. Sorry if I refer to it often .)  It was an episode where the newsroom was in a dilemma whether to report that a certain public figure is dead when every media network already did. They were still waiting for a confirmation from their sources.  I remember the line: “It is the doctor who proclaims that a person is dead.” In the celebrities’ case, they should have allowed the family member to break the news or at least ask permission from the family member if it is okay to tweet about it.

I can’t say I miss Dolphy because that would be lie.  What I really miss are Philippine sitcoms.  I was in high school when ‘Home Along Da Riles’ aired. I was living in a dormitory and TV was not permitted during school days. I sometimes daydreamed about having a personal TV just to watch it. Almost 20 years later,  my wish is now a reality. There are mobile phones with TV feature. The sad reality though: no more Philippine sitcoms and Dolphy already passed away.

The upside: Tito, Vic and Joey are still alive. I can’t remember any of their movies but I remember the experience of watching their movies. I had a good laugh every time. I just hope Tito would stop being a politician and take a cue from Dolphy.  Dolphy’s reply when asked about running for public office: “Madaling tumakbo, pero paano kung manalo?” ( It is easy to run for public office. What if I win?)

My favorite Dolphy movie (I remember watching in this theater) is “Black Magic”. From what I recall, the movie was about a poor guy being handed power (or was it money?) by the devil and he used that power to do good.

source: http://dolphyfilmography.blogspot.com/2008/03/1987-black-magic.html

As I often say (and I did not originate this thought), life is short.  Even at 83,  I still feel that Dolphy’s life is still short.  At 69, my father’s life is too short. At 61, my mother’s life is too short. If I base my life expectancy on my parents’ mortality, I am already in my mid-life. I say life is short but it is still great.

I think this is the reason why I miss Pinoy sitcoms.

Source: hepsylone.tumblr.com via Kristin on Pinterest

 

While I was writing this post, I checked Dolphy’s age again. It is coincidental that I am writing this on Dolphy’s birthday. The way I see it: it is a reminder to not dwell too much on his death but to learn something from how he lived his life.

A Full Weekend

In Luzon, typhoon Ferdie brought floods and heavy rains over the weekend.

Source: PAGASA

Source: PAGASA

In Mindanao, we had a pretty fair weather last weekend. Except for early morning mass on Sundays, I really do not have plans during weekends. Early Saturday morning,  I was reading entries in the qWhatis website. It is full of fun information that I lost track of time. I shifted to Facebook.  While I was reading my friends’ Facebook updates, I came across a photo of a friend’s pristine white bedroom.  I was so impressed by the clean space. It was like a hotel room.  I glanced upon my bed and I realized that it has been awhile since I last changed linens.  That afternoon,  I was sweating buckets cleaning my room. I would have chosen white linens just like my friend’s room but I do not own white sheets. I ended up with a colorful and clean room.

One of the best feelings in the world is sleeping in a bed with clean linens after taking a shower.  This is one of life’s little pleasures.

I slept like a baby. Sunday morning passed by like a melody. We had early lunch. After lunch, my cousin and I went on an impromptu trip to the beach. This is one of the perks of living in a country with 60,000 kilometers of coastline. The beach is just a few minutes away. We both wanted our dogs to enjoy the beach.  He has two mini pinschers while I care for my aunt’s large dog of mixed breed. I think the dogs enjoy their fist beach trip.

This is Joaqui at the beach.

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After the beach trip, one of my cousins mini pinschers slept on my chair while I worked on the computer. The little guy got tired after all the swimming he did.

It was a simple yet productive weekend. I can imagine the dogs having this conversation. <3

 

On Being Informed

A friend of mine tweeted  that she is officially a fan of this new show.

 

It really piqued my curiosity especially at this time when my favorite TV shows are on a break. I am only watching ‘Suits’ now. I am open to any TV show suggestions. I am glad I watched ‘The Newsroom’.  The first few minutes of the pilot episode was riveting. Jeff Daniels is such a revelation. Good thing that I barely remembered him in ‘Dumb and Dumber’ .

There was one episode where Jeff’s character, Will McAvoy,  said something about what kind of news he wanted to deliver.

“From this moment on, we’ll be deciding what goes on our air and how it’s presented to you based on the simple truth that nothing is more important to a democracy than a well-informed electorate.  We’ll endeavor to put information in a broader context because we know that very little news is born at the moment it comes across our wire. We’ll be the champion of facts and the mortal enemy of innuendo, speculation, hyperbole and nonsense.  We’re not waiters in a restaurant, serving you the stories you asked for, just the way you like them prepared.  Nor are we computers, dispensing only the facts because news is only useful in the context of humanity.  I’ll make no effort to subdue my personal opinions.  I will make every effort to expose you to informed opinions that are different from my own.”

 

I wish I write that well. The show is written by Aaron Sorkin,the guy who brought us ‘The West Wing’. The funny thing is, I cried in one of ‘The Newroom’ episodes than in a movie with heartwarming, romantic love story that another friend recommended.

Maybe I am just a TV show kind of person, if there is such a thing. I can enumerate favorite shows in a heartbeat than favorite movies. Some people really love movies. I asked my cousin what her favorite movie is and she answered, “Titanic”. She thinks it was a great love story. She talked about how two people of different background can fall in love.  It is funny that she did not mention why the movie was called “Titanic”. I showed her Facts Barn because it has facts about the Titanic. Yes, Titanic, the ship not the movie. The website just started and it is slowly adding important facts about different subjects from animals to events to technology like facts on Facebook.  I like the list format.  I will visit this website from time to time for new factoids.

Source: cafepress.com via Marci on Pinterest

Two D-I-Y Birthday Cakes

This July, two members of the family celebrated their birthdays one week apart of each other. The nephew turned 1 and my aunt turned 57.

My nephew’s first birthday was also his christening. It was a 2-in-1 celebration and my cousin worked on a tight budget. The couple only invited 50 people. In Philippine standards, it was a small party.  Nevertheless, we wanted to make it beautiful.  What is a birthday without a birthday cake, right? For my nephew’s birthday, we ordered 50 cupcakes instead of those layered and themed cakes.  No, we did not order those fancy and expensive cupcakes. We ordered P10 per piece cupcake from a neighborhood bakery, Julie’s Bakeshop. The cupcakes do not have the exquisite taste of those gourmet cupcakes but the satisfaction and happiness cupcakes brought to one’s face are the same.

I still have the printed liners I used last Christmas so I asked Julie’s to use them for the cupcakes.

I bought these decorations from another store for P48 a set.

We now have more personalized looking cupcakes. The caterer did some presentation magic. This is how the birthday cupcakes were arranged.

The second birthday cake

A few days ago, it was my aunt’s turn to celebrate her birthday. She did not have a party. We just  have a filling lunch to celebrate the occasion.

I baked the birthday cake. (I practice effortless baking. See previous attempts here and here.) I found this mix in the grocery.

I figured this is the cake mix I was looking for to experiment on making multicolored cake. I saw my aunt’s birthday as an opportunity to experiment.  I followed the cake mix instructions and portioned the batter and added food coloring.

I wanted the 4th color to be purple but for some reason the mixture between the red and blue food color did not turnout quite right. While trying to tweak it, I ended up with gray (not an appetizing color). I “marbled” the mixture.

My frosting was a little bit runny because I only have a less than a cup of confectioner’s sugar. Gaisano was already too far for me to buy the sugar. I was hoping to create rosettes like the cupcakes here.  I have to make use with what I have. This is the best I can come up with.

I told my Tita to blow her candle immediately because the icing might run out. HA! Btw, the cake was delish! Good job, Pillsbury!

This is how it looked when sliced.

This looks so far from the multicolored cake I had mind. Anyare? (What happened?)

 

The important thing is that my aunt was happy to receive the cake. 😀 Yay, for effort!

Someday, I’ll bake that multicolored cake. I’ll practice more. My birthday is coming up in the less than two months. I’ll experiment again.