Wednesday, February 29, 2012

What is the taste of true love?

I discovered this short film from a fellow blogger. I know I just posted another video clip in my previous post. But I feel that this film deserves to be shared.

The film received the People's Choice Award in the recent Manhattan International Film Festival. With or without the award, this film owns my respect. If it is not too much to ask, please spare 5 minutes of your time for this great piece of work.

I would love to hear your thoughts too.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


This day wasn't for me. I had my own share of excessive agitations just for a day. In my attempt to perk up myself, I ended up encountering this short clip. I really hope that everything will be better over the next days. Breathe Diane!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Finding some happiness

My students are already done with their defense. I was about to rejoice when some unexpected papers to edit came.

I spent my entire weekend reading and editing papers. But I am not complaining :D Though I get exhausted, I believe that every work is a blessing. It means that people still trust my abilities.

And despite the bulk of workload, simple things like this
 is enough to make me happy.

Hope you are having a great weekend.

11 Things Meme

One of my talented and lovely blog friends tagged me to make this post. But before I answer her questions, allow me to introduce my lovely blog friend. Her name is Yadira and she hails from the beautiful land of Puerto Rico. She is in to different crafts but her interest is concentrated on sewing, embroidery and crochet. She blogs about her crafts and even her self-made yummy recipes. If you are interested in arts and crafts, I suggest that you drop by Yadira's blog. Learn and enjoy your time viewing her great and unique pieces.

Yadira requested me to answer these questions

1. Do you have any favorite recipe? Which one?

I love food so my list of favorite recipes is definitely a long one. :) But just to identify a few, here are some in my list
From our local delicacies I love

Kare Kare
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A famous Filipino dish made from peanut sauce, variety of vegetables and beef. It is usually served with shrimp paste.

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2. How many blogs do you follow?
I follow plenty of blogs. Though honestly, I am not able to visit everyone everyday. In my spare time, I usually unwind by hopping to each of them.

3. If you could be any character in a book or movie who would you be?
I always love female characters who were able to redeem themselves. To name a few, I love Frances Hodgson Burnett's Sara Crewe and the Little Women of Louisa May Alcott.

4. What's your dream travel destination?
Europe! I would love to see Paris, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and all those places I only knew from my World History classes.

5. Do you have pets? Do you talk to them?
Honestly, I am not an animal lover. Though we have Douglas, a dog whom I have featured in this post.

6. If you could have any job in the world, what would it be?
For a day, I always wanted to be in the shoes of a celebrity or someone famous. For those who are close to me, they know how much I hate attention seekers. I always wanted silence, privacy and independence. But even for a day, I'd like to know how it feels to be in the shoes of the person I never imagined to be.

7. Is there any food that you wouldn't eat no matter what?
Buro or Balao Balao, I swear to never eat it. Buro is also a Filipino delicacy. It is a mixture of rice, shrimp and salt that is fermented for several days.

8. 3 items you would take with you if you were left alone in a deserted island. I
Can we make it 10? LOL Pen, paper and a choice among Channing Tatum, Jet Li, Jeremy Lin or any of my crushes whom I can't mention LOL
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9. Have you ever pretended to be someone else?
Not really pretended to be someone else. But there were instances in my life when I wished to be in the shoes of the person I admire.

10. What's your dream item to find in a thrift store?
A signature bag!

11. Food: Mexican, Italian or Japanese
I go for Mexican and Italian.  

Now it's my turn to pass this post to my other blog friends. I would love to see my following blog friends to answer the same set of questions in a post.
1. Cas of Oasis in the Desert
2. Vivian of A Dance for 5
3. AC of Life is Beautiful
4. Amanda of Life Since Then
5. Comeca of Shans Wife Meme
6. Lene of Memoire de Lene
7. Jann of Have a Daily Cup from Mrs. Olson
8. Izdiher
9. Ricki from Art @ Home
10. Bee of Before I turn 25
11. Janelle of Of Pinks and Fairy Tales

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Away from the city life

My backpacker days are over. After two consecutive weeks of moving in and out of the city, I am back for real. The out-of-town assignments are over and my everyday work mode resumes.

Last week, I was in Caleruega for our spiritual retreat. This week, I went with some of my colleagues for a team building activity. We particularly went to Club Balai Isabel. For those who have been reading my blog, you might have encountered some posts I made for Club Balai Isabel. I've been to the place several times and all I have are pleasant and memorable experiences. I love the place and the entire Club never fails to mesmerize me.

I wasn't able to take a lot of pictures on my recent visit. I was busy participating in our team building activities and I was all tired at the end of each session. I also chose to simply enjoy the place and I used our free time to recover the scarce sleeping hours I often experience in the city.

Here are the few pictures I have taken

The villa where we stayed. I recovered a lot of sleep in one of the rooms here. :-)

The entire place is filled with refreshing greeneries
My obsession for pathways! Gardens with pathways will always be a part of my photo posts. 

How I wish our home has this as its backyard.
If I will not own my own infinity pool, I wanted something like this. I want a swimming pool surrounded by ornamental plants. 
Club Balai Isabel also provides a place of worship for the Catholics. This is the Spousal of Mary and Joseph Chapel.

Allow me to leave you with this photo

Happy Friday! Wishing everyone a great weekend ahead.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Caleruega in pieces

After my three-day retreat in Caleruega, I have to pack my bags again for an out-of-town work. This time, it will no longer be a real vacation. I am joining some of my colleagues for a team building and some planning activities. Though I anticipate the tiring tasks, I honestly wish that this becomes a regular opportunity for us. However, the trade off of having the chance to travel is that I am missing my classes for days. While I am worried of how I will squeeze in our remaining topics, I'm sure my students are having the best time of their lives in my absence. :-)

I will not be providing a teaser here of where I will be going over the next days. This entry serves as an extension of my previous post.  What I will instead share are some interesting furniture pieces that I found in Caleruega.

Let's start with some artworks

A painting that depicts some activities of the Catholic community. Since Caleruega is owned and managed by a Catholic congregation, expect more of this in the area. I also love the paintings and even arrangement of the Filipino made jars.

Do you love stained glasses? This magnificent image of the Risen Christ is the main art attraction inside the Transfiguration Chapel. Instead of seeing a crucifix, the Chapel provides a glorious image of Christ. Have you noticed the mantel used? Instead of using the typical white mantel, the altar made use of a batik inspired cloth.

Chapels and other worship rooms usually provide a glass or wooden podium for the commentator. In the Chapel of Transfiguration, this unique wood carving replaced the plain and traditional podium we see.

Wood is a common element of furniture in Calereuega. Here are more unique wood pieces
 How I wish I could take home the bench and the fantastic view

The main altar is made from a huge tree trunk. Now, who says that tables need to be in perfect shape to be beautiful?

Even the Chapel's tabernacle is made of wood

These are dividers in our session hall. The frames are made of pure wood. The white areas are made of Capiz shells. Capiz is a common type of shell in the Philippines that is usually used for lampshades, wall panels and other decorative pieces.

Here's another item made of shell
Kabibe or a huge shell turned as a sink. How do you want to have this in your own homes?

Caleruega also houses a number of beautiful outdoor and indoor lamps. Here are some of them
This chandelier is originally a candle holder. Someone made the effort to repurpose the metal holder to a shabby and elegant chandelier.

 I fell in love with this lamp post. There are a lot of this when you explore Caleruega
This one is my personal favorite.

Wishing everyone a great week ahead. 

P.S. Thank you to all my blog friends who appreciated my previous post. :-) You made me happy.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A place to fall in love

After three days of being away from the city, I'm back with stories and pictures to share. I mentioned in my previous post that I will be out for our annual retreat. I spent three days to a place where anyone can definitely feel being close to nature. The place where me and some of my colleagues stayed was in

Caleruega is owned by the Order of Preachers (O.P.), one of the largest Catholic congregations in the Philippines. The place was named as Caleruega because it served as the birthplace of St. Dominic, the founder of the Order of Preachers or more commonly known as the Dominican Order. 

 I love pathways especially if it means having this great view. 

During night time, this is how the pathway looks like

And more pathways to love

We stayed in one of these villas.

The interior of the villas in Caleruega is very simple. What you can see in a typical room are single sized beds, enough cabinets, side table, and the basic comfort room. No telephone, TV, wifi access and all other technologies and luxuries that define city life.  However, if your window gives you this view every morning

then I guess, you will never demand all those conveniences. After all, Caleruega is intended for a spiritual retreat. Here are more relaxing views from our room

There's nothing like this in the city

More sceneries to love

The highlight of everything is this

The Transfiguration Chapel of Caleruega

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

On a break

By the time you are reading this post, I am already traveling with some of my colleagues for our annual retreat. We will once again be housed for three days in this paradise

I will share more and updated pictures over the weekends.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Power of Words

Current mood: Happy :)

I know some of you are tired of reading my rants over the sleepless nights of painstakingly reading, reviewing and editing the research papers of my students. The good news is that I am able to recover my sleeping hours this week. From less than 4 hours, I now enjoy 5 to 7 hours of sleep. Still not healthy enough, but I am at least recovering.

Aside from ranting over my teaching works, some of you may felt that I had thoughts of quitting this profession. I found myself in this situation because an incident somehow demanded me to defend my character and principles. I was tested to the extent that I almost made a life changing decision. Leaving teaching is like losing a part of myself. For those who know me well, you know that becoming an educator is one of my dreams. When I was given the chance to teach, I felt more than honored and blessed because I was given the chance to fulfill my own dream. Destiny perhaps wanted me to remain in this profession. I also believe that when a dream thrives in your blood then no hindrances could ever challenge it. So here I am, still surviving and living with my dream job.

Just when I found some reasons to quit teaching, I equally found another reasons to remain. Before my evening class, a few colleagues gave me some positive words. A few told me that the works of my students possessed the organization, substance and quality of a real paper. Whew! That was all music to my weary soul. Though with all due respect and humility, I have to say that I don't claim full credit to the works of my students. They have their advisers and their own creativity to accomplish everything. But still, I know that in one way or another, I am part of that little success.

I never demanded for awards, citations, and even pieces of attention. I love and will continuously love my silence. I never wanted everyone's praises, both real and fake. I am contented in knowing that I accomplish my job, accurately and of course, on time. The most that I wanted was for people to respect and know me as a person who always gets the job done.  But I will not deny the fact that when people acknowledge my humble accomplishments, my entire outlook changes. That rare smile of happiness leaves a trace on my face and marks a significant fulfillment in my heart.

Some of you may see me as a very shallow person. Yes I am. My source of happiness is sometimes so plain and shallow. A pat from the back from my boss, real and sincere words of gratitude from my students and in this case, some positive feedback from my hard work, these are enough reasons to make me believe that I should remain patient, persevering and dedicated in fulfilling the life I wanted.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Thursday Daydream

In the middle of a busy work week, here I am AGAIN day dreaming of some beautiful things. :D I arrived at work so early and since there is some time left to relax, I decided to make some refreshing post. Refreshing for me meant being away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Those who are very close to me know my greatest dream; to have my own weekend home in Tagaytay. And if I would design my own home, I wanted it to have a garden.  My family owns a limited space here in the city. All we have is our home, parking space and some potted plants. If I have the financial resources and chance, my own place will surely have the relaxing garden I've been dreaming of. And if I would design my own garden, this is how I wanted it to be

My garden should have a pathway

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That would lead to a bridge

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and to this space

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I have my own log cabin

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and a relaxing terace with this

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I'll have to spent my breakfast and other meals here

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I guess I'm having too much daydream here. :) It's 8 am, time to return to reality, time to work.

Hope everyone is having a happy Thursday.

P.S. All photos used in this post are not owned by the author. Sources are linked below each picture.