Saturday, February 25, 2006

Strange, strange --

Yesterday was strange, to say the least. I was already on my way to work when I found out that classes were cancelled for the day. This was a welcome relief, because I wasn't really in the mood to teach that day. (Case of the grumpies. *grump grump*)

I still went to the office to pick up readings and papers to check over the weekend.

I spent the day watching the goings-on on television and it was a very distant/alienated experiencing.

I didn't know what it was about--

I can't explain it, but something felt "off" about this "revolution" --

* * *

Sumo, raar! --

Met up with a friend for lunch today and we decided to try out Sumo Sam in Shangri-la. The menu is amazing! So many things to choose from! Johann and I were overwhelmed and we wanted to try EVERYTHING.

Since it was our first time, I decided to go with my Japanese "tester" food, katsudon. (Tester = something I eat at all Japanese restos -- if they muck up a Katsudon, then everything else must suck) Johann had the spicy chicken teriyaki. It was all yummy!

Sayang lang I can't have maki and anything raw. =P

Thursday, February 23, 2006

I made this! --

It was my bro's birthday last Tuesday and he asked me to prepare the Tofu Lasagna for his office. I also offered to make a Spinach Artichoke dip for him.

Everything was relatively easy to make and it took us 1 hour of prep and about 30 minutes of baking to make both dishes and they turned out really well. (IMHO *koff*)

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My bro asked us to join him at his office for lunch and I was very happy to see that his officemates liked the lasagna and the dip.

* * *

Oh, and my current favorite --

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I don't like the pregnancy pants being sold in the maternity stores -- the one with the adjustable waist band. I think it works when one is late in their pregnancy but, for someone who is just 23 weeks in, it looks really baggy and bleh.

I found this pair of pants from Yvonne's for under PhP600 and I love it! The waistband is elastic and wide enough to accommodate my growing girth and it looks very sleek pa rin.


* * *

Zaturnnah! --

My sibs and I (with Johann) watched the matinee show last Saturday and had the time of our lives! It is clever and campy and everything else in between.

Eula Valdez was a revelation as ZsaZsa -- and Ricci Chan was perfect as Didi.

After the show, we texted everyone we knew and told them to catch the musical.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

How I spent my Valentine's Day --

Johann and I had a pre-Valentine's celebration last Sunday. We knew that things would be hectic on the 14th and we didn't want to be a part of it. We are also planning a post-Valentine's celebration this coming Sunday.

The morning was spent attending to bank-related errands and then a trip to Mercury to purchase this month's prenatal supplements. I also had to get bandages and a hot/cold pack.

You see, last Monday, our infirmary informs me that I have tendonitis in my left wrist and I have to keep it immobilized for a week or so.

We had lunch at Sweet Inspi and treated ourselves to Mongolian.

We were supposed to go to Gateway after to watch a movie, but we were so loggy from our meal that we went back home and stumbled upon Scorcese's Casino --

Wonderful film. Must get a copy of it. ^_^

I spent the afternoon reading Christopher Priest's The Prestige and ended up finishing it the same day. My hun is pleased that I finally read a book that he recommended. ^_^

It's a must-read! It's being adapted to a movie by Christopher Nolan and will star Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman.

We trekked off to Starbuck's to claim our V-day "freebie' and found ourselves in a line that stretched from the counter to the door.

* * *

Merriam-Webster's Words for 2005! --

Click here.

* * *

Movies!!! --

So many good movies out! ~sigh~

Must watch:
Brokeback Mountain - Gateway 2, 7:00 / Gateway 10, 6:20
Fun with Dick and Jane - Gateway 9, 5:20 7:20
Munich - Gateway 4, 6:00

There's also Malick's The New World, Goal! and The Pink Panther.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Am curious --

Indulge me?

Tin's Johari Window

C, friend and co-faculty has a version of this -- a Johari Bag and she asks her class to fill it up as part of their Pre-Reflection paper activity. I was happy to stumble upon an online version through M's friends. ^_^

Sunday, February 12, 2006

New blogstop! --

Check my links section and you will find my friend J and his blog New Age Pirate.

* * *

Love and Sacrifice --

Attended a wedding with my brother last weekend. It was his good/best friend's wedding and he didn't want to go alone. I tagged along because I love attending weddings and looking at dresses and whatnot.

The priest gave a lovely homily that started with a lot of palakpakan, which amused me and my brother.

It was what he said after the nth palakpakan that affected me.

He ended the homily with three words for the couple to remember --


I don't remember what he said about love or commitment. It was what he said about sacrifice that made me go "wow!" --

He said that to love is to endanger yourself.

You step out of a world that you know and you control and you enter into a world that is unfamiliar and new --

The sacrifice in love is to willingly give yourself over to the experiences of loving --

the laughter and tears;
the celebrations and the defeats;
the everything and the nothing.

... wow, di ba? ^_^

Saturday, February 11, 2006

New Recipe --

I've been thinking about making lasagna ever since I saw Giada de Laurenti make one on her show Everyday Italian (Lifestyle Network). I also wanted to make something using ricotta cheese.

Today was a light day for the Ongs, so I decided to go to Fresh to pick up ingredients for a lasagna.

I found this recipe on and it looked easy enough so I decided to give it a go.

It's tofu lasagna -- and, yes -- it's meatless.

We did some modifications, though. The recipe calls for all the ingredients for the filling to be mixed. I decided to separate the sauce mix from the tofu-cheese filling. And had one layer of just the tofu-cheese and one layer of the sauce. And I used a canned sauce (Hunt's Garlic and Herb).

This is how it turned out --

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I had extra sauce, so I put it in a bowl and served that as well. My hubby loved it -- he kept asking for another helping. ^_^

A tip for people interested in trying this recipe -- make sure to drain ALL the water from the tofu. It really does make a difference.

Apparently, there's also oven-ready lasagna sheets -- no need to pre-cook the sheets. O_o

* * *

More on cooking --

One of the questions I am asked whenever I bring out my baon during lunch break is whether I was the one who cooked the baon. Most times, the answer is no -- we usually get heatables from DEC or leftover takeout food and bring that to work.

There are times when I do feel like cooking AND cleaning up after myself. During one of those moments, I decided to make Katsucurry, which is really just pork tonkatsu and japanese curry sauce.

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* * *

Pregnancy-Vanity issue --

I'm 21 weeks pregnant and it's still an awkward phase for me -- I no longer fit into my regular clothes, but I'm still too small to actually wear maternity dresses and whatnot.

At work, the news of my pregnancy is slowly making its rounds around our office and I am amused with people's reactions. The most common one I hear, though is this --

"You're pregnant?!? I thought you were just getting fat and I didn't want to say anything."

I don't take offense to it, btw. I guess it's really just an indication of the awkward phase that I'm in.

I have put on some weight -- a requirement for a healthy pregnancy and delivery. That's why I'm glad that we don't have mirrors in my house. What I have is my husband's assurance that I am glowing and lovely.

In case people are wondering what I look like -- here.

Vanity prevents me from actually placing the tag here. ^_^

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Wake-up Call --

The weekend was surreal, to say the least. What was up with the world then? In the Philippines, I literally woke up to the news that people died in a stampede at Ultra. I took a shower listening to news about the trouble that Danish caricature caused in the Muslim communities. And then there was the ferry boat accident in Egypt.


The stampede at Ultra saddened me the most, realizing who the majority of the casualties were and why they were lined up to get into a game show. It was difficult watching the news coverage and seeing even more people asking, despite what had happened, if the show was still going to go on -- people seeing the brief "disturbance" as their chance to get into the stadium and be part of the audience.

People were that desperate.

I was reminded of Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery," which we took up in my fiction class a few weeks back. I think of all the stories for that section of the semester, "The Lottery" was the one that jarred them out of their dream existence. I remember reading about "The Lottery" when it was first published and how people were so shocked to come face to face with an account of their cruelty. Even though it was a work of fiction, people couldn't quite accept the remote possibility that they would be capable of such an atrocity.

And here we are.

Where life has imitated art. 72 people died and the question on most people's minds was still -- "Will the show go on? What happens to my lottery ticket?"

And then there's the blame game. Whose fault was it?

The easiest answer would be the security teams of Ultra and ABS-CBN. There were too few people managing the crowds. I watched the DILG interviewing/interrogating the ABS-CBN head of security. The head of security was trying to justify the 1:200++ ratio. The security from Ultra admitted that they weren't clear on their role at that event, so when the madness started they didn't know what to do. There are even accounts of the security guards being the first ones to leave and seek higher ground.

Some people were saying that it was the PNP's jurisdiction, since the lines were on public roads.

In today's newspaper, the headline for one of the tabloids said that the President will really go after ABS-CBN for this and I wonder whose best interest is being served here. I wonder if there is anything more to what our president is planning. Some other enterprising parties have also "cashed in" on the tragedy -- a class action suit is being planned and rival networks have used this to encourage people to watch their shows instead.

While ABS-CBN has taken full responsibility for the accident and is currently in the process to reimburse medical and funeral expenses, I can't help but think that this is a stopgap measure.

That there are harder questions with less digestible answers and more difficult sacrifices need to be made --

* * *

More on the weekend --

In contrast to the madness happening all over the world, my sibs and I enjoyed an afternoon with our sister (it was her birthday). She treated us to Steak MD and then we visited Wheatberry and Greens nearby.

Everyone went crazy for the Wheatberry sweets and we ended up having dessert there. I had the double chocolate cream puff and I finished the whole thing without sharing it with anyone. >_<

On our way back to Katipunan, we dropped by Cost U Less, which had always intrigued us. We were pleased to find some products that were featured on Lifestyle Network's Unwrapped.

Fun fun afternoon with sibs. ^_^