Saturday, August 29, 2015

Five Random (vol.1)

Since I am such a sporadic blogger, and my posts lately seem to focus on not a single subject (with the exception of 'house project' posts), I have decided to posts random of anything. Anything which deserves to be posted for record. Five photos or thoughts, posted previously or not, will be featured and justified.  

For my first ever 'Five Random' series, my daughter takes the lead. Of course.

When I first saw her in uniform, I couldn't be more proud. I know, she's cute! She's been attending a 2 hour nursery-play morning class. While in the afternoons, she takes power naps which are prerequisite for kids her age.

'Language Month' in English. As fate would have it for school kids in the Philippines, she had her first ever Buwan ng Wika celebration earlier today. I was not there to witness but the other half was as excited so he skipped work in the morning to witness this milestone!

Though not a huge fan of alcohol, this by far is something I enjoyed drinking especially when paired with cheese or tortilla chips. Costly if consumed daily but mine has been kept chilled for a while now. I stopped when I suffered cough for two weeks since coming back from Cebu. I might take a sip this weekend while watching movies. Inset photo was while watching 'Gone Girl'. That movie was crazy and one of the best I've seen in my movie-rentals this year.

As for red wines, I am still on the search for the right taste.

CURRENTLY READING: The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason
The book is a must read for those wanting to manage their finances properly and grow them exponentially. Not that I had difficulty managing mine, modesty aside, I am frugal so saving is an inherent character. It started with a coin box. In kindergarten, I graduated with honors so my mother gifted me something. The gift was a coin box. I could still remember its design: Snow White. Every time my parents gave me spare coins, I put most of it inside my coin box. My coin boxes have evolved (can't even remember how I lost Snow White) and so the amount of savings have increased, too. Up to now, I still save and a proud frugal. I do treat myself  with little luxuries once in a while but always, saving comes first. I am by far not 'Rich' by definition but having a job, a little business and funds on the side prepares me and my family for uncertainties. I am actually thinking of gifting my daughter a coin box someday as a start-up lesson for her in saving.

Whenever raining, which has become a daily occurrence lately, I wear my ever reliable water-proof pumps by Free Fish (a Japanese shoe brand). This pair is from Urban Research x Free Fish collection which I bought last Summer 2014. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Summer 2015

Summer ain't over but as per tradition, here's a summary on how my Summer went so far.

The cloudless sky normal to Summer has been blessing us with beautiful sunsets. I can't keep my eyes off it. Nature's wonders always remind me to appreciate life. It's a good pause from all the stress and loneliness one feels, look up far and just be mesmerized at the horizon.

Call me a late convert. Eversince I inquired about this series from an Indonesian officemate, who is a huge fan, I got hooked. My sources were initially from Tsutaya (a famous DVD rental shop here in Japan) but for the 4th and 5th seasons, I got copies from that friend. I finished watching all seasons in less than 2 months. Now, I can't wait for the 6th Season!

Early June, I bought some house plants at my nearby Family Mart convenience store. When July rolled in, I decided to place them inside because they were slowly withering. Until I went away to Cebu for a week, they decided to look like these..

HOUSE PLANTS (after a week of no water and care). They look almost dead to me but I did not give up on them (the emotional investment was too much). I know that these plants' lifespan are short but I decided to take out the dead parts. They'll survive. In hindsight, I should have bought a cactus. 

I went there with an Indian officemate. Of all pictures I took, this was my favorite. Toyville was a recent attraction in Disney Sea which we never got inside to because queue seems to go without end. It bothers me a little why Woody and friends are stuck in Disney Sea. I know they belong at Tomorrowland in Disneyland (which by the way at this time looks like Yesterdayland).  My guess is that Toy Story franchise has a huge fanbase so the need to have its own park.

I took a week off and spent it mostly with Amber. We bonded and had cough at the same time.

It is only in June this year that I finally went in. We've tried their cake one time during Amber's 11th month birthday, and it was delicious, not too sweet. The meaning of its name is still unknown to me though. 

LE GRE KAN cake with tea and something to read at the left.


Murakami's 1Q84. Finally, after almost 3 months of reading intermittently (read: weekends only), as of this writing, I am at its final chapter. The book was such a drag. Too many narratives of nonsense which is typical of Murakami. I could not wait to reach the last chapter. The story is too fantasy and metaphorical. I love fantasy but maybe 1Q84 was too much out of everything. 

The Little People were creepy though. One thing that was left unanswered, or maybe I missed it, was the young girl whom the dowager intends to adopt. She went missing one night and her whereabouts were never told. One salvation though was 'love'. Always prevails at times, even in a parallel universe. Tengo, in one of the last chapters before meeting Aomame, was hesitant at actually meeting her for fear of incompatibility. After all, 20 years have passed since they held hands and they were never close friends to begin with but as both characters have described their deep feelings eversince they held hands at 10 years old, it was true love. It was something that survived for long. Aomame had the same reservations. Though she initiated their rendezvous after 20 years, she took chances not knowing if Tengo still remembers her, let alone has feelings toward her. 

Manly shoes as an officemate described it. Most of my female office mates are dressed fashionably. This is one of my favorite pair of Sperry (my first actually). It's my go to shoes on working days which I rotate with other 'manly' shoes I own. However, I do change it to flat pumps while in the office (I intentionally have spare shoes in the office for meetings).

Saturday, August 08, 2015

House Project files (pt.3)

Before any updates, let me share you the old photos of the finished product before it was turned over to us. Tadaaa! all yellow and orange. Yes, I was fully aware of how it would look like. The construction was done in 2006, just after a year I signed the purchase. Well, this 9 year old baby will soon become a beauty.

Fresh looking without any cracks or signs of wear. 

The left side of the house. 

Design as a whole looks outdated and blah for a house in 2006. Jalousie slats are a little bit of 80s. So when it was first renovated a few years ago, the windows were replaced with french windows, making it all same.

But with this current renovation, I made sure that all windows are made of plain tinted glass to allow natural light and air in. 

The living room. The white door was not bad-looking at all but I don't think it has survived because I haven't seen it on my last visit. 

From the moment I saw the stairs, I made a mental note that it was meant to be revised considering safety and beauty.

The sub-par looking ceiling. I know not a very nice looking house but owning a property with your name on it, a house and lot for that matter regardless of its size, is something worthy. Even if at the time my intention was not purely for it to become my abode but to have it rented, I am glad I did not sell it because at some point long ago, I was planning of doing so. Good that I was too busy with many things that I apparently forgot such plan.

The current progress as of this writing.

Isn't she getting prettier everyday?? From afar it looks like a clinic and it will continue to look like one because I am having it painted with white (I don't have the exact shade). Brick accents will fill the terrace. 

And this is the design. I did not have any input in terms of the basic design. We let our contractor take liberty with it and he in turn allowed us to comment for any revisions on the details we have in mind.

The room above the garage will be the master's bedroom, while those tiny narrow windows just above the bamboo trees (i assume) is Amber's room. However, this will be revised because the master's bedroom appear (in fact) without a window from this side. So the door will be scrapped out from the design and in its place will be sliding glass doors allowing the master to see the outside world =P.

To describe this design, it looks simply modern and the presence of terraces in brick accents looks Western. The size is Asian which fits within my budget. I was inspired by homes in Japan - compact, plain and free of unnecessary ornaments.