Saturday, October 31, 2009


I was working from home again yesterday and was on the phone with a client for more than an hour (10am to 11:20am).  I was in the middle of our bed, earphones tucked in my ears, in pajamas with my notes all over the place.  While they are in their 52nd floor office in Central, Hong Kong, overlooking the bay, wearing black power suits.  I wonder who has it better? :D

Oh, and another thing I love when I work from home?  Drinking my favorite tea from my ancient favorite mug...

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Little joys

I love working from home.  Coz I get to spend more hours on the bed, not necessarily sleeping...but working or facebooking/blogging/blog hopping :) haha  It's 7:45 and on a normal go-to-the-office day, I would've been in front of my PC already, drinking tea and starting with emails or doing data runs.  Now, I'm trying to work, now logging in to the office server and watching the little boy sleep.  It's absolutely wonderful.  I wish I could sleep longer, but when I'm up, I can't go back to sleep anymore.

Later today, the little man and I are going to the office for the company's annual Trick or Treat.  Sugar pumped kids on a work day?  Must bring the yaya. haha  Then tomorrow, Trick or Treat at the hub's office.  Saturday will be Trick or Treat in our village.  Yay!

I got the little two costumes for this year's Halloween.  For his school and our office's Trick or Treat, it's the 17th Century Soldier costume.

And then the Halloween theme at the hub's office is Superheroes so we got the little boy another costume for tomorrow.

He clearly likes the Superman custome better... he refused to take it off after trying it out! haha

Sunday, October 25, 2009

To construct a house - Part 1

I'm a girlie girl, so I don't really know these construction thingies.  That's why God blessed me with a husband who's not only into construction, but is quite serious about it, to the point of obession :)  All I wanted was a house, with walk in closet and a bath tub :)  Somehow, we balanced each other out.

First thing to do: Decide how you will build your house.

We were able to buy our lot late 2006.  So we've had it for 3 years now.  Even before we got it, hubs and I decided that we're gonna build our house, meaning we're going to manage and finance the construction.  That way it'll be done according to what we wanted in terms of layout and materials used, and also because an Uncle (who was a contractor) advised that it would be so much cheaper to do so. 

The other option of course is to have the developer build the house.  This was good if you're in a hurry to move in - that was RFO (ready for occupancy) scheme.  It was of course not cheap to get an RFO and you're not sure of the quality of materials used. 

And then you can also hire a contractor to build it for you.  As owner, you don't do anything except approve the design, and then pay for the construction.  I think this is cheaper than RFO, but then again before the construction starts, you have to make sure that the list of materials is of good quality and something you like.  So you have to check every material listed, go to construction supply shops and depots to check on the quality and the price.  This you have to do because if you don't and they start doing your house and you don't like the material, say, of the tiles and you'd like to change it, the cost of the change will be added on top of the original construction cost.

Second thing to do: Design the house or find someone who can.

We knew what we wanted our house to be.  We've been to dozens and dozens of look-see of model houses of other developers to know which ones we like and we ones to say no to.  We've also looked at magazines and websites.  All we had to do is find someone to design our house.

We looked at several options.  One was a referral of the hub's officemate.  The other was a brother of an officemate.  We also saw a few architects on the web.  We all tried to meet with them and told them of what we wanted and they gave us plans and schemes and we met again to talk about changes if there were any.  This took awhile, to be honest.  None negotiables for me were the walk in closet and the bath tub.  But I had to choose one, since our space was limited.  It was heart wrenching - I honestly couldn't choose.  After about a month of debating, I let go of the bath tub but made the hubs promise that we're going to have one in our retirement home :)

Finally, we narrowed it down to the design, the person we're most comfortable with, and of course the price.  For me, what's important is the rapport we have with the architect.  There were a few we met who really had good designs, but I found them not trustworthy.  I went with someone sincere.  The hubs went with someone who we can afford hehe  So we had a winner design, winner architect and winner price! :)

We still have a long way to go. I'll try to update as we progress in this project.

The horror that was Taal Vista

On my last recent birthday, hubs and I went on a breakfast date at Taal Vista's Cafe on the Ridge. It was a week day so it wasn't crowded, in fact, we were the first customers there. Food was more than abundant and the corned beef was to die for! I love corned beef so that was a real treat for me :) We had a wonderful experience then but the service was a bit off. I brushed it off and though it was too early in the day to demand great service. Overall then, it was a pleasant experience.

So when my Mom announced that she's spending her birthday with us which was the following month, I arranged for breakfast buffet at Taal Vista after the Sunday mass. My sister booked for 6 persons at 9am. My mom's birthday came and we all prepared for a feast at Cafe on the Ridge. We got there a bit late, about 10 minutes past 9am.

Anyway, when we got there, it took them another 15 minutes to seat us. There was no maĆ®tre or even a welcome hostess. So we were able to sit down at 9:30. And they didn't tell us that the buffet was only up to 10am. They could have advised us that they were closing in 30 minutes.  They could have given us an option to proceed with our reservation or go somewhere else. 

Friday, October 23, 2009

Everyday is picture day!

I've always loved taking pictures.  While before, I only take pictures on special occasions, now I believe that everyday can be a special occasion.  So I carry with me, at all times, if that's possible, my handy camera.  Just sharing a few everyday is a special day pictures :) 

Sitting in Starbucks with the hubs.  He's enjoying a cup of Cappucino, and I got a Chai Non-fat Latte.  Just being together after a hard day's work

Marveling at the first sign of fruit from our very own backyard.  A Kalamansi fruit at that :)

Lazy sunday afternoon merienda with my little man

The wallet that was...

I blogged a few weeks ago about having shopping cards.  I've had the Rustan's Frequent Shopper's Card since 2002.  When my Mom was here a couple of weekends ago, we went shopping at Rustan's and that's when I found out that they are launching a new shopper's card.  That meant I had to use my points as the points were expiring soon.  And I had 600 points, equivalent to PhP600!  Cool huh? :)  Ealier, I eyed this green wallet, but didn't want to spend on anything and since I had the points, I got the wonderful wallet.  My sister was green with envy LOL  It's much more fun to get a nice thing when you don't really pay for it, right?

Viola! The wallet that points earned :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Nothing lasts

It started with our Microwave not heating up about a few months ago. Then our newly bought electric fan for the computer fell to the floor and had a crack on its propeller (is that right?) hehe A few weeks later, our electric fan for the living area won't start. Suddenly our speakers for our DVD player won't turn on. And just last week our less than 2 years old rice cooker refused to cook!

Our appliances are going kaput every second. I hope nothing else will follow, our budget can't accommodate new appliance purchase. What is wrong with appliances these days? They're like disposable items, more like toys rather than appliances. Growing up, we only had one ref which grew up with me until I was in college. Mama just got tired of it, so we had to replace it. Even then Mama was still able to sell it. Same with electric fans, we had electric fans lasting decades. But our electric fan only lasted about 2 years. So weird.

So now in our second floor, we have junk composed of dead appliances - electric fans, speakers, rice cookers, microwave. What do I do with these? They're just gathering dust and space. In our old neighborhood, we had suki manong mambobote who buy our junk. But not here. Where do I find a junk shop to sell these items? I wish there is a listing of junk shops in Sta Rosa, Laguna! haha

Happy weekend all!

(picture from

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Of Etiquette and Consideration for others

I was at the hospital yesterday morning for a quick check-up with my derma. The waiting area was full, a few were even standing along the corridor. There was a space but a Mom had her child lie down so they were occupying 2 seats. A few older people checked the seat but the Mom didn't even bother offering the seat, didn't even budge. I found that very in considerate. I have a child too and we also go to crowded places. When we find others looking for seats, I make my child sit on my lap or his Dad's so the others can have a place. Sadly and apparently, not all mothers think the same. What are teaching our children then? That it's ok to let others suffer as long as we are comfortable? Children copy what they see their parents do. As parents, we should be responsible enough to teach the right manners and etiquette. The kids learn these first from the home, and not anywhere else.

I always pass by South Luzon Expressway. Because of the construction of the extension of the Skyway, traffic has been horrible the past few months. Yesterday, driving home from work, hubs and I took the Skyway and when we were near the ramp going back to South Luzon Expressway, a few cars and buses, would to squeeze in front of us. All the other cars would fall in line and for their turn, except for a few cars who feel they are above everyone else. I hate it that they refuse to follow the rules. I don't understand they feel more privileged than others when we were all on the same page, heading home to our families from a hard day's work at the office. If we could just all follow the rules and be considerate of others, traffic accidents can be avoided. Travelling home would be less stressful.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Happy at 52

It's my Mom's birthday yesterday and she came over since Friday to spend her birthday with us, mostly specially her only apo. When she's here visiting, it's always a frenzy of activity. Eating out is a favorite past time. Going shopping, seeing places. She believes that life should be lived fully, so while you can still go out, go out. When you're old and sickly, you'd rather stay in bed. This is her with my little boy.

Happy birthday Ma! Thanks for the generosity of your heart. As always, I wish you good health and lots of love.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Wonderful Sunday

After 3 weeks of endless rain, Mr. Sun finally came out blaring hot yesterday, Sunday. A very welcome and needed respite from the typhoon weather. At least that's how our Sunday was here in Sta Rosa, Laguna. Not so in other provinces in North Luzon. I was just reading the news when I woke up (not in the actual newspaper, who does that now a days?) on my blackberry that a few lost their lives with Typhoon Pepeng. Let's continue praying for better days, we've had enough Super Typhoons, TBH.

We went to hear mass on our usual time, which is at 10am. The past weeks, we've been hearing mass at 5pm coz mornings usually rained. I loved being back on the normal groove. The little one specially loved buying his puto and eating it too :P Then lunch at home. I was trying to get my little sis to buy us lunch. She didn't have school for a whole week, so she had extra allowance :D But she wouldn't budge. Cheapskate. Haha

Bonding time after lunch. Playing with the little one, he asked to watch Ice Age 3 on DVD, I believe for the 20th time that weekend alone. Then we all took a nap. And went online. At one time, I think we had 3 computers online in our house all at the same time. Addicts. LOL

We had to meet our architect (yes, we're constructing our house!) at around 3. After which we trooped to Nuvali to feed the fish. We all enjoyed doing it, specially the little one. The kois were surely hungry. Too bad though coz I forgot to bring my camera, so I don't have pictures except from the Hub's phone. I'll remember to bring a camera next time we do that.
To me and the Hubs, the best way to end a day is to get a massage. When I tried to schedule one at our suking Spa, they were fully booked. Then at around 6, they called to say they had a cancellation so they could accommodate us for the last call. Amazing, huh?
Great, great Sunday indeed! I wished I could just pause life and reply that Sunday all over again, and over again... but work beckons and we have to face reality. My only consolation is that I'm able to work from home and bring a little piece of that Sunday with me to last me the long work week.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Pepeng (Parma) went away!

Last night, I slept fearing and bracing for the Super Typhoon Pepeng. Late afternoon yesterday, it was starting to rain and winds were also starting to pick up. When I woke up this morning, I expected to wake up to heavy rains and strong winds. Surprisingly, I woke up to a dry day, although still a bit gloomy. I'd take a gloomy day anytime. So I had time to do my weekly palengke. Fish was ridiculously expensive though, so I stayed away from the fish area. Vegetables were priced the same, due to the State of Calamity declaration yesterday, they couldn't raise the prices.

Oh and I got another frequent shopper card! This time from Monterey. They have this MVP card where you can earn points while you shop and points can be converted to cash. Quite neat, huh?

Happy weekend all, stay dry!

Friday, October 02, 2009

Another Super Typhoon

We're still reeling from last week's Ondoy and now we have another Super Typhoon coming, locally named Pepeng. I fervently hope and pray it doesn't hit land much, if at all. We need to recover from the destruction of Ondoy. We need to make sure we're ready for any emergencies.

I have a couple of officemates who were flooded. They lost a lot of things at home. Someone even almost lost a loved one. It's weird though coz when I talk to them and ask how I could help, they would say they didn't need anything. I guess it's not easy to ask for help. We officemates are pooling up our donations so we can give to them, just a little to help them tide over this tragedy.

I didn't bother going to work today, I want to be home if and when the typhoon hits land. And I'm trying to prepare for things we would need. Stocking up on food and water, first aid kit, medicines, batteries, flash light, candles. We need to be prepared. All the time.

Let's just continue praying for the typhoon not to hit land, and not cause a lot of destruction. Stay home if you can, it's still the safest place.