Saturday, June 30, 2007

A leap of faith --

I love my Print Gocco --

I've had many hobbies in the past that fade out of the limelight as time passes -- but not the Gocco.

It has proven itself to be a trusty sidekick many times over -- with it I printed my mom's invitation (which some people thought we had professionally done) and, most recently, Seth's birthday invitation (the Gocco allowed for the color experiments, which resulted in a motley and whimsical invitation ^_^).

Early this year, I was very sad when I found out that the Gocco was endangered. Thankfully, that isn't happening anymore -- the Gocco is alive and here to stay.

This is a project that I have been mulling over for quite some time now and, last year, I was really intent on doing it but I lost my nerve. This time around, I've decided to bite the bullet and take the leap.

So I applied to distribute the Gocco here in the Philippines. And I got it.

So, here it is --

My little space in the web universe.

One Tiny Party.

Enjoy! ^_^

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Finally! -- Honey and Clover!

Early last year before I came to Iloilo, Khursten dropped by the condo and gave me a copy of the first few episodes of Honey and Clover, and told me that this anime was better than Karekano.

We both like the same kind of shouju stuff (I actually met her because of Karekano) so I was very intrigued by the series.

Unfortunately, in the chaos that ensued -- I left the copy in Manila.

A few months back, Tarie posted this image in her blog --

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I thought it was so beautiful and so eloquent --

I finally figured out that it was from Honey and Clover so, when Johann went to Manila recently, I had one pasalubong request -- the complete set of Honey and Clover episodes.

I finished watching everything two nights ago and it is a wonderful series -- right up there with Karekano and Furuba.

I love how they are able to weave so many different themes into the story -- love, being the main theme.

But what affected me deeply was Hagu's story -- here is a girl with a gift. She is an amazing artist and she is torn between exploring every aspect of her gift and living a normal life. She wants to do both but she is often reminded by people around her that she is fortunate to have such a gift and that she shouldn't waste it.

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There comes a point in the story when she is given an opportunity to give up her art -- one of her friends offers her this way out -- he tells her, "Living is enough."

It would be so easy just to give it all up but she refuses to take it and chooses instead to devote herself to her art.

The theme of "the gift" being a double-edged sword is constantly explored in the anime and it offers very honest and very human insights into it from the point of views of both the gifted and the not-so-gifted.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Simple pleasures --

We were intrigued by the Afrique Wasabi Burger because one of Johann's students had been having it for lunch for the past week so we decided to order some last Friday.

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It doesn't have the fancy buns that burger places in Manila have, but the patty is pretty amazing.

My concern about burger patties this thick is whether it is fully cooked through and this one is -- I don't know how they did it but the patty was still juicy and very tender (a medium well, which I like) --

It's a wasabi burger but the wasabi taste was subtle -- too subtle for Johann who was hoping for some kick to the burger.

Now if only`they had fries ...

* * *

Buho --

"Buho" is hole in Ilonggo and I first heard about this bakery during a discussion about Pandesal. I asked my dad about it and he remembered going there as a child because it was very near his school.

It's called Buho because it is, literally, that -- a hole in the wall. They pride themselves in always having warm, freshly-baked bread and I haven't found cause to contradict this claim yet. ^_^

My favorite is this --

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It's a mini-Pancho (they spell it Panso at Buho) and costs PhP1.00 each.

We brought some friends to Buho last Thursday and bought PhP50.00 worth of Pancho -- what a haul! By the time we got home, the bread was almost gone.

Buho also sells bigger versions of their breads for PhP3.00 to PhP5.00, depending on what you want but they are most famous for their Piso Pancho and their Piso Pandesal.

I'll take a better picture the next time we get bread from Buho. ^_^

Friday, June 22, 2007

It's All in How You Look at Things --

One of my favorite books has to be Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth --

I've probably read and reread this a dozen times in the past 5 years. Today, I found myself getting it out of the bookshelf and putting it in my bag before we left for work.

When Johann asked me what book I eventually chose and I told him the title, he said that it was a book that only a few of our students could probably understand or appreciate.

The Phantom Tollbooth is a deceptive piece of literature, much like Lewis Carroll's Alice stories. (Juster's book is often compared to Carroll's.) While the storytelling is whimsical and the use of language incredibly playful, it presents painful truths about life.

I have just finished reading Chapter 9 (It's All in How You Look at Things) and am now in Chapter 10 (A Colorful Symphony) -- I love how these chapters emphasize the concept of point of view --

" tall men I'm a midget, and to short men I'm a giant; to the skinny ones I'm a fat man, and to the fat ones I'm a thin man."

Something is bound to look different, depending on who is looking at it and from what position and, while there are popular ways of looking at certain things, we should remember that that isn't the only way.

Almost in the same breath, the book reminds you that you can't keep looking at things from someone else's point of view.

I love how the book builds and then contradicts itself. I think that this is part of the book's magic -- we are allowed to see something with fresh eyes. Something old is new again.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Remembering --

One of my clearest memories of being young is of this:

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When I was younger, I spent many summers in Manila with my cousins. My cousin Jan and I had an almost-nightly ritual of scaring ourselves shitless watching Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and then trying to forget it by watching Strawberry Shortcake's Big Apple Bake-off with the Peculiar Purple Pieman from Porcupine Peak.

It's the movie that made me interested in cooking -- not that I cook, btw. This is the movie that made me love Strawberry Shortcake and her gang. I remember one Christmas when I got a Strawberry Shortcake doll that smelled of strawberries. Back then, I didn't know what real strawberries smelled like but I knew that it would've smelled something like my Strawberry Shortcake doll.

And now this movie is out on DVD and I want a copy of it! >_<

Thursday, June 14, 2007


We have been internet-less since Saturday and it has been an interesting few days.

Johann left for Manila on Friday so it was just me, Seth and my sister.

Since it was a long weekend, I decided to spend the time watching Grey's Anatomy Season 3 -- it really is an amazing series with no signs of slowing down. I'm looking forward to the next season. ^_^

I also decided to rewatch Vision of Escaflowne, which has one of the best opening sequence in Anime (IMHO).

Johann arrived last Monday and gave me a pair of Crocs Prima in Cotton Candy. ^_^ He also got me a copy of Anthony Bourdain's A Cook's Tour, which I'm currently reading.

Seth turns 1 on Tuesday and we're having a party on the 24th so I'm slowly getting everything ready.

This weekend is pretty busy for me -- it's my high school's Alumni Association Induction ceremony and I am part of the group. It's also Father's Day and we're going to the Sarabia Manor Hotel Father's Day lunch offering.

And there is Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer to watch. ^_^

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Why I love Robinson's Supermarket --

First, their staff is very friendly and know where everything is.

Second, they have these monthly sales where expensive products are sold "Buy 1, Take 1" -- we took advantage of their Dreyer's sale and, two months ago, we stocked up on Kettle Chips.

Third, they aren't afraid to bring in new products. Like this one:
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They had these displayed at their checkout counters and I couldn't resist buying a couple. It's a very small bag and quite pricey at PhP47++ each but it's very delicious!