Archives for May 2014

Quick Update: Life is a feast!

I am looking at my calendar and May is almost over.  You would think I would be sad but I am excited about it because I have a trip coming up next week! I’ll talk about it when I get back.

My May was steady. There was not much work that required tough deadlines. But still, my schedule was full and I never had the time to blog.  Let me just  run down some of the things I did in May.

My friend came home after a long vacation in Manila. Another friend had some free time and the three of us went to their family’s farm. I love random get-together like this.

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The sunset was gorgeous on our way home.
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May is fiesta time in the city.
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There was a tree planting activity. Each Butuanon clan was asked to plan trees by the river. My two aunts were sitting pretty in the shade. (ha!) It was my uncle who did the planting. Well, he was a forester by profession. He knows how to plant it right.
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This is the Magsaysay bridge over the Agusan river.
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Fiesta was last May 19. I hate going to fiesta where I have to wait for the food to be ready. Well, well, well. We have not yet finished cooking when the guests started to arrive. Oops! Here are some of the food we prepared:

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I also continued to do some watercolor art. I tried landscape painting this time.

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And since I bought a mechanical pencil, I tried sketching.

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Oh and in a few days, we will have an alumni homecoming. I made this invitation. 😀
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And life goes on.

I hope all is well you, guys!

In the Mood for Watercolor Art

I had art lessons in high school. Fine arts was part of the curriculum for two years.  We were taught how to draw and paint.  We were exposed to different tools- charcoal pencil, oil pastels, watercolor, water-based paint. We did still life, landscape, portrait, cubism, abstract painting and murals.  In the  spirit of full disclosure, I am not a beginner.  However, it has been awhile since I last picked up a brush.

I have been reading  Alessa Lanot’s blog for some time now and I am amazed at her creativity. She somehow piqued my interest in watercolor whenever she posts her art.

I bought a watercolor set, brushes and thick paper last week and since May 1, I have been practicing watercolor art.  There are a lot of Youtube videos which show different watercolor techniques. I have been using them for practice. Hopefully, there will come a time that I will no longer have to refer to those videos and will find a technique I can call my own.

On May 1, I painted an apple.

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The next day, I did strawberry, raspberry, pepper and basil.
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The beauty of social media is that you can get instant feedback from friends. They seemed to like my work that I was motivated to do more. By Day 3, I was willing to try another technique, one has an impressionistic feel to it and the other one uses Chinese painting technique.
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Today is Day 4 of my watercolor practice and I think Youtube is running out of videos I can practice on.
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My friend suggested that I should open an Etsy shop and offer watercolor illustrations. Another friend suggested that I should create greeting cards for special occasions. Another one suggested that I should mount an exhibit and raise funds for our alumni homecoming. Haha!  I am thankful for supportive friends who think I have talent in this art form.

I think I still need to practice more. All I have done is copy what others have done. I hope I will be able to create original work someday. Right now, I am enjoying the process and I am running out of paper. I will have to buy another set tomorrow.

How about you?  What craft are you interested in?

Buying Wine Online

People who enjoy California wine from Santa Barbara County may be interested in shopping at a winery that sells a variety of wines online. Customers will find it convenient to purchase several bottles of wine for a special occasion without needing to leave their homes. Discounts are available for customers who buy a case of wine.

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Those who like red wine can buy several varieties of pinot noir. One pinot noir has hints of vanilla, lavender and strawberry. People who like fruit may enjoy a pinot noir that has hints of wild berries, plums and apples. Another pinot noir for those who enjoy wine and fruit has hints of blueberries, cherries and raspberries.

People who prefer white wine can purchase chardonnay or pinot grigio. There are hints of butterscotch, honey and melon in one type of chardonnay. Another chardonnay has hints of citrus and tart apples. The pinot grigio with hints of pear, melon and apple will appeal to those who like fruit.

Customers can also purchase corkscrews and crystal wine glasses.

This company also offers wine club membership and custom wine labels. Wine club members can purchase wine at a discount. Customers can order custom wine labels for bottles of wine that will be used for special occasions.

30 Reasons to be Thankful for in April 2014

Summer is at its peak. I hope it does not get hotter than today. Whenever I go out, my face is drenched in sweat after a few minutes outdoors. Even with the scorching heat, there are still a lot of reasons to be thankful for. I am glad I am still able to keep up with the gratitude journal.

Here are the reasons why I am thankful for April:

1. Understanding. I was late for a meeting. Well, I was in the nick of time.  For some reason, some people are quite understanding of my tardiness. I was glad I was still able to do what is expected from me.

2. Knowledge-sharing. Because I have a mathematics degree, my cousins run to me for help with numbers. My cousin plans to take the NMAT and she wants help on how to answer those math problems in her review.  I am glad I was able to help. I am glad there are still concepts that stuck in my head even if I have not done some math problems for years.

3. Fun conversation. Even if my friend is faraway, we were still able to keep in touch and laugh about our day.

4.  People who melt the heart.

And what inspires this thought? Suits is back! With a few Google clicks, I learned that Gabriel Macht came to the Philippines. Why didn’t I know this?

5. Friend’s blessing. The construction of my friend’s apartment is almost complete.

6. Photo inspiration. I worked all day but I had time to edit my cover photo on Facebook. Here it is!

You may download this photo, free of charge. :D

You may download this photo, free of charge. 😀

7. TV show. Game of Thrones is back!

8. Lechon! My cousin invited us to his new home.  Food was prepared and there was lechon. Yay!

9. Holiday. It is “Araw ng Kagitingan”.  I tried to be creative today using the Windows Paint program. 😀

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10. Ridiculous text. I often say that I get more texts from an infotext number than real people. I got this funny text and gained a lot of funny comments from friends on Facebook. Yes, I got a lot of ribbing. All for fun!
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11. Clean bill of health. My aunt had her regular checkup today and I am thankful that she had good results.

12. Meeting with classmates. We had lots of food and we were always laughing.

13. Birthday. It is an Aunt’s birthday. This means free dinner!

14. Cool math videos. I hope people will start liking math once they have seen these videos.

15. Prayers.  For some reason, I like praying on my own. I really talk to God like having a conversation with him. A friend asked me to include her in my prayers as she will do the same for me. I thank God for prayer warriors.

16. Playlist. I am a huge Lea Salonga fan. I was trying to get a copy of her Playlist book last year but it was always unavailable. Finally, I got mine.

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17. Binignit. It was Holy Thursday and everyone is avoiding meat. The favorite dish for this season is binignit (guinataang halo-halo). Enterprising vendors in our local market got creative. The sell the mix per kilo. We do not have to cut those ingredients anymore. This saves us the trouble of cutting kamote, gabi and ube into cubes.
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18. Food. Most businesses are closed today so it was be hard to buy something to eat. Thank you God that we have enough.

19. Realization that I need help. My bathroom clogged and we have a device to unclog it but it broke. I spent an hour trying to fix it. Dirt mud all over me. I lamented that this is the time I need a husband. LOL!

20. Finished tasks. Since I went on a vacation, there was a backlog of tasks I needed to complete. Today, I finished all of them. I have enough leeway to be on track since I have another trip next month. Hehe!

21. Time for another work. Because I completed the task the previous day, I have enough time for another job without putting pressure on myself. I had enough time.

22. Mochi. Delicious. And I think I got my friend addicted to it, too.
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23. Good news. I received some good news today!

24. Sign. There is an idea floating at the back of head for several months now and I got an answer. I have prayed for such a favor and I realized that the answer may not be something I have hoped for. I believe God has other plans for me. I just got to have faith.

25. Clogged bathroom fixed. And I did not need a husband to do it. Haha! I feel proud to fix it on my own. I have been using a flooded bathroom for days. Thank God for the wisdom on how to get it done.

26. Fiesta. We were invited to a fiesta in a barrio. I love going to places in the city where I have not been. I brought my camera with me and did some shoot with my cousins.

I love this rural setting

I love this rural setting

27. Black Sambo. I was able to make three containers and they love it. We froze the Black Sambo and it tasted like ice cream. My cousin loved it so much that he gave me money to make another batch.

28. Answered prayers. All the while, I thought that the answer to my previous prayer is “No”. I think the answer to my prayer is “maybe”.

29. Free lessons. I got some free photography lessons from my cousin who came home for a vacation.

30. Letter sent. I was asked to write a solicitation letter for the alumni homecoming.

Goodbye April, Hello May!

There weren’t really much showers on April but I hope there will still be May flowers. 😀