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New year, new home

24 Dec

Sa wakas, after so many months of planning and saving (?), we’ve finally started renovations in our soon-to-be-new home.

Actually, it’s a small house built on a small plot of land my father bought when he was still alive.  When he died when I was 17, my cousins/uncles decided to use the small amount he left to build a two-door apartment to be rented out.

But since Mike and I have been planning to finally live in one of the apartments, a renovation is in order.  The former occupants left the house in shambles, with unpaid P12k++ (now P14k++) water and P2500++ Meralco bills.  Before they left, they also failed to pay two months’ worth of rent. No, they had no deposit/downpayment.  I was a considerate landlady.  When I realized how much they left unpaid, I was really heartbroken.

But I feel better now about the house, especially since renovations have already started the other day.  Upon inspecting it again last Tuesday, we realized how small the total floor area is, it’ll be like living in a two-story condo unit.  So we have to maximize every space.

Yesterday, we started buying materials such as plyboards, nails, paint, etc.  We decided on a matte white finish since it’ll go best with our old-new Batibot chairs.  We got the chairs last year from one of those furniture shops along Avenida, near LRT1’s Abad Santos station, for P700 each.


I’ve been checking Daphne Oseña-Paez’s blog and somehow I’ve been getting ideas from her own house and her sister-in-law’s NY apartment.  I love her sister-in-law’s banyo, and I wonder how we can transform our own bathroom to look ultra-chic with our ultra-limited budget.  Before the renovations began, I’ve also been checking out the home sections of department stores/168 and already bought a faucet, a shower head, and a holder for bath essentials.  I got this holder from SM for only P249.75.   Cute di ba?

The stairs also need to be replaced and repositioned while the dividers on the second floor had to be torn down.  We’re focused on getting the basics done for now, but we have so many plans for the house, we need to save/earn more if we want everything done by the time we’d like to move in.  Grabe, I’m excited.

I’m back

16 Nov

I’m back, back, back.

Grabe, I got hospitalized due to dengue. So Third World, I know.  Lume-level sa Leptospiroris.  But I’m fine now and that’s all that matters.

But before moving on to other things, I’d like to thank my dearest cousins Gie and Bek for providing most of the financial and moral support during my confinement, my best friends Marlon and Aya, my wonderful son Maru for serving as my inspiration, and Mike for being my aliping saguiguilid all throughout my sickness.  I feel like I’m alive and well all because of you.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.


3 Nov

Oh, I thought I’d never get out of Manila again. Ever since the typhoons, I’ve been trying to stay home most of the time to spend time with family and loved ones. Haha! OA I know.

But yesterday, my family and I (minus Mike, because he had to work, corny) went to the Zoobic Safari inside Subic.

We took the SCTEX (Subic-Clark-Tarlac Exit) on our way there and to me it was the best highway I’ve ever passed through in the Philippines. I was so amazed, ang ganda ng daan — clean and malawak. May kamahalan lang ang toll fee kaya konti lang ang dumadaan.



We arrived at Zoobic before lunchtime (after several stopovers to eat, siyempre) and immediately started the tour.



A bit disappointed though since I thought we’ll get to experience everything Safari style.  But then again, hello Rona, for P500 you’re expecting too much.  Still, from time to time you’ll encounter pigs and other animals roaming the place, such as this one. No, I don’t know what it is.


It looks like a hairy donkey.  Sorry nakatalikod sya in this pic.

The highlight of the tour, of course, is the close encounter with the Tigers.  Everyone gets to ride in one of these caged jeepneys before entering a huge fenced area.


If you want the tigers to come close to you, you need to pay P200 so that the caretaker, who joins you in your jeep, can feed them chicken.



The tigers were so huge, at hindi sila mukhang gutom unlike in the Manila Zoo.  And look at the fangs!

The manong who came with us also threw chicken on the roof of our jeep.  And in one swooping motion, the tiger was on our roof to get his prize.


That’s when I knew that I will never survive a tiger attack.  Kaya dito na lang ako, with the friendly ostriches.


Since I was carrying Maru almost all throughout the tour, ako naman yata ang nabinat. I’ve totally lost my voice and is feeling a bit feverish. Plus every part of my body aches!  But I think Maru had fun though.




I will be ranting in this post so don’t bother reading if you don’t want to read stuff about healthcards, crappy Duo/Superduo services, and being broke

25 Oct

After getting confined in the hospital for almost five days due to dengue, Maru’s home and well now.

maru hospital ward

Gad, it was his third time to get dengue.  Possible? Yes, according to the doc.  Buti na lang lagi namin naaagapan.  Everytime he gets fever for two straight days, I take him to his pedia, Dra. Elen, asap. And because I’m praning, I always couple it with a blood test.  Now I’m thinking of demolishing our old house and rebuilding a new and improved mosquito-proof home.

Anyway, I’m planning to get a health card. As in seriously planning, parang feeling ko there’s no more time to think — ‘Just do it.’  I’m choosing between Fortune Care and Medicard, although most of my friends are recommending the latter.

I realized now that Mike and I have already spent more than a hundred thousand pesos for hospital and medical fees due to Maru’s frequent hospitalization (intestinal flu once, dengue thrice).  If you knew how little we earn or how hard we work our ass off just to earn extra, you’d probably sympathize with us and give us donations that could rival those in DSWD’s warehouse.

But really, if I had a health card, say Philhealth for example, our medical expenses could have been cut in half.  Better siyempre kung may Medicard, Fortunecare, or Maxicare para covered almost all expenses — room, medicines, doctor’s fee, labs, etc. But because nag-procastinate ako sa pagkuha ng card (because hindi naman siya madali, imagine it would take more than 10 percent of my monthly salary to cover me and Maru), baon na tuloy ako ngayon sa utang sa mga pinsan ko.

So now, I will stand firm na kelangan na talaga ng health card — for me, Maru, and Mike. Dahil we’re not getting any younger and with our stressful lifestyle, hindi malayong magkakaroon kami ng sakit at ayoko na ulit mamroblema kung saan kukuha ng pera pampa-ospital, kung makikipagsapalaran ba kami sa public hospital, kung i-skip na lang namin ang pagpapatingin sa doc dahil baka may kung ano pang lumabas na sakit na hindi naman namin kayang maipagamot.  Really, I’m so fed up of having to put our health at the back seat.  Now is the time to get a health card.  And I’m not taking any more excuses — from myself or from Mike — not to get one.



During Maru’s daily checkup prior to getting hospitalized and while he was confined in the hospital, I decided to use my Globe sim to subscribe to the new Super Duo service of Globe in the hopes that I can easily call home or Mike (who’s still faithfully using a Globe number).  I subscribed to their P35/day service just to try it at first.

It worked well on my first and second call.  But the succeeding calls, ayaw na.  Still, I gave Globe the benefit of the doubt and subscribed to Super Duo again when my initial registration of P35/day expired.

But whaddayaknow, the second time I registered, I wasn’t able to use the landline feature at all.  As in ayaw pumasok ng calls na ginawa ko sa lahat ng landline na tinawagan ko.  So I just gave my cousins/Mike my Super Duo number so they could call me.  Ayaw pa rin. Wala. Zilch. Nada.  Hindi raw matawagan, sabi nila.

Kaso, may problema talaga ako sa pagkatuto because when Globe failed me the first and second time, I still gave them another benefit of the doubt.  So for the third time, nag-subscribe ulit ako.  At ganun pa rin, hindi ko pa rin nagamit ang landline except for one time when we asked someone to call us at 2 a.m.?  Isa pa, I even had a hard time calling other Globe numbers.  As in I had to repeat the call process several times bago ako makatawag.

So siyempre, nadala na ako. Kaya hindi na ako nag-subscribe sa Super Duo. SA DUO NA LANG!

Ang kaso, ganun pa rin. Hindi pa rin ako makatawag sa landlines at hindi rin ako matawagan sa Duo number.  Ano ba???  Sobrang hassle!

I actually called Globe after the second time I registered.  Ire-report daw nila ang problem ko. But the service failed to improve and I feel like I wasted more than a hundred pesos on a service that didn’t even work.  So now, I will try to get a refund from Globe dahil super nakakainis.  I know it’s just a hundred pesos. But hey, sobrang hassle kaya ang ginawa nila sa akin while I was trying to make a call from the hospital. At bukod dun, as a customer, feeling ko na-trick nila ako to part with my hard-earned P100++ just to get crappy service.

Globe, will I get THIS as well?

Turning 30

8 Sep

As you probably know, I just turned 30 last September 4.


Thirty.  My gad.  Big number.  When I was a kid and a cousin turned 30, I immediately thought, “She’s now so old, she’d never get married.”

I was right with the “she’d never get married” part.  But having turned 30 myself, I don’t feel a year older than when I was, what, 22.  Okay, okay, I’m lying.  I DO feel older.  Aside from referring to my high school days as “noong araw,” the feeling of being “old” must have stemmed from the thought that when someone reaches the age of 30, she officially becomes an adult.

No more excuses for the lame career or bad relationship choices.  No more blaming the traumatic childhood experiences for one’s really bad behavior.  No more time for indecisiveness, dilly dallying, procastination, and delaying tactics.  It’s as though when someone reaches 30, the currents of time will flow so fast there’s no other choice but to sink or swim real hard.

When I was 25 I used to dream that I’d be able to visit Paris before I turn 30.  It never happened.  Now that I’m 30, all I can think about is how to get financial security for my family, how to have extra cash to pay for health and life insurance, how to get/maintain a stable career path, and a little extra so that I could at least bring Maru to Hong Kong Disneyland by the time he turns three or four.

But enough of the drama.

Last September 4, I had a taste of what it was like to be at the River Seinne, except that it wasn’t exactly River Seinne. Mike and I went on a cruise by the Pasig River.


It was raining the whole day but what the heck, I decided I wanted to do something I haven’t done before or haven’t done in a looong time.  The last time I was in a Metro Ferry was when I was a kid, with my dad.  The Metro Ferry was just revamped at that time and he wanted me to experience riding it.  It wasn’t airconditioned then.  And I remember seeing a floating cat carcass.






It was a real treat. Kaso mali ang nasakyan naming station.  We boarded at Escolta, the second to the last station from Manila.  We should’ve boarded at the Plaza Mexico station for the Intramuros side of Pasig River.

Anyway, we got off at Guadalupe Station.  We had no idea where to go after we got off so we decided to just take a cab to Boni High Street.

We had a field day roaming Fully Booked BHS.  Grabe, nakaka-overwhelm talaga ang dami ng books doon.  Everytime I go there, I always get stumped.  Especially when you see books such as these.



Or find cute notepads like these.


My fave.


We ended up having coffee and cake/donut at Krispy Kreme.  This Oreo chocolate cake is too sweet even for my sweet tooth.


We also dropped by R.O.X.  Mike was especially interested in this backpack/baby carrier.  Hello?


After BHS, we decided to go to another place I’ve never been to: Tiendesitas.  My gad, I should go back there.  There were too many Kenneth Cobonpuenish furniture.  Closed na nga lang when we got there so all we did was drink, eat, and make fun of the scantily clad showband singers.  No, I don’t have photos.

But what made the day really special was when Mike surprised me with these.


Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Partial eclipse of the heart

22 Jul

I missed the partial solar eclipse this morning, thanks to Chuvaness’s 4 millionth reader contest. 🙂

But now, while watching the news, I became totally emotional. The solar eclipse reminded me of my dad.

partial solar eclipse

Photo courtesy of Mr. Jess Matubis.

When I was 8 years old, Papa made a really big deal about seeing the March 18, 1988 solar eclipse.  Of course hindi ko na naalala na ito nga ang exact date except ayon sa Internet, March 18, 1988 daw ‘yon.

Anyway, naalala ko lang na sobrang excited siyang makita ‘yung eclipse at naghanda talaga siya ng mga film and xray negatives to protect the eyes daw while observing the eclipse.

Niyaya niya ko sa labas ng bahay at binigyan ng negative.  I remember looking up at the sun with the negative held in front of my eyes.  How the sun looked like or whether I actually saw the eclipse at that time are all blurry to me now.

But I remember him looking up at the sun with child-like wonder.  It was a very rare moment since, to be honest, he was always very grumpy and serious, hindi pala-tawa, madaling uminit ang ulo, at maraming angst sa buhay.

Oh, how I miss Papa.  Naiyak na tuloy ako.


24 Apr

One of my closest friends in the world, Polee, has just come out that he’s got HIV.  Though I initially felt sad about the news, I’m super happy and proud of him that he’s turned into an advocate.

And to celebrate his birthday on May 30, he’ll be taking a 545-mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles to raise funds for the Gay & Lesbian Center that’s been helping him through this ordeal.  Please help him in raising funds so that more HIV-positive persons can live well until a cure is finally found. 

Here’s an excerpt of Polee’s letter:  

From May 31st through June 6th I will ride 545 miles on a bicycle as part of AIDS/LifeCycle 8 to raise money and awareness to fight HIV/AIDS and support those living with this disease.

AIDS/LifeCycle is the only AIDS fundraising cycling event in California organized and co-produced by the beneficiaries. With your help, my fundraising efforts will enable L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center to continue providing leadership to prevent new HIV infections and to develop ground-breaking prevention program and bold policy initiatives. The L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center refuses to accept that HIV transmission is inevitable. Together we can do our part to support the Center and its clients.

I am asking for your financial support as I ride to Los Angeles for this cause. Side by side we CAN realize a world free of HIV and the human suffering it causes.

I greatly appreciate your time, your consideration, and your donation. I will keep you posted on my progress.



Paoi Eulalia

Tara na and donate!  CLICK HERE to help Polee in his cause.

Looking like Angelina Jolie

22 Mar

Ever since I’ve watched Angelina Jolie’s performance in Girl Interrupted, I’ve been a fan.

So imagine my surprise when, after taking Alaxan FR (Ibuprofen+Paracetamol), my lips instantly became Angelina Jolie-esque!

Yes, I’ve just discovered I’m allergic to Ibuprofen.

And aside from that minor lip transformation, my eyes also became Kermit-esque.