Summer Getaway at Pinamuntugan Island

Pinamuntugan Island has very light sand, though it's not white. But the water is bluish-green. When we were swimming the current was quite strong in some parts that we were being tossed in the water like dolls.

The Breathtaking Aguirangan Island

It took my breath away! Its 1.5-hectare formation with white beach and crystal clear waters was so beautiful!

Jelly Fish: The Rarely Seen Beauty Under the Sea

Have you ever seen a jellyfish up close? I have. I think it's one of the most beautiful creatures of the sea.

November 25, 2011

Life and Marriage

Marriage…it’s not easy! I think if you were to ask a lot of married people, many of them would say the same. Staying in the marriage and making it work really requires hard work and lots of sacrifices and compromises. I can say that because that’s what we’re experiencing right now. My husband and I have been married for seven months now and I must say those seven months have opened our eyes to the reality that marriage isn’t easy.

Imagine two individuals with different personalities, temperaments, likes and dislikes living under the same roof day in and day out! Conflict is bound to happen sooner or later. I guess ours happened sooner! These past seven months had been difficult. And I have to be honest, there were instances when my patience became so worn to the core and my love was really put to the test, I really felt like giving up. At times I’m not really sure where we’re going and it really makes me sad. But those are the bad days. There are good days as well when I feel like we can really do this and we’re both happy and we jive in the things we want to do and achieve.  But I know now ours is a work-in-progress. There are good days and bad days. As they say, the first year is the most difficult year of all because of the adjustments that have to be made!

November 2, 2011

Cross Stitch Diversion

 Problems are a part of our daily lives I know that, but sometimes they can get so overwhelming. The overwhelming part is where I am now.  had so much jumbled thoughts inside my head two nights ago that I just had to write them all down otherwise my head would burst! I originally about posting those thoughts here but then I realized they're just too private and personal. I just don't want to think of these problems anymore so I thought I have to find a diversion.  And I found it!It's actually a hobby of mine in the past so I'm just rekindling it. Guess what it is? Cross Stitching!

I immediately went to the mall to buy the things I need. I originally thought about using as my picture as a pattern but I could not find a place that can make it into one, so I just settled for a ready-made pattern from the mall. Since I love dogs I got a pattern of two cute puppies! I already started my new project though I'm not sure when I'll be able to finish it. Its kinda big! But for sure it's going to look great when finished! I hope this will effectively divert my mind off my problems.

October 27, 2011

Favorite Google Doodles Remembered!

Did you notice that Google put different kinds of art on its home page at certain times? These art forms are called Doodles. Doodles are unique to Google and they make searching on the search engine more fun for users. Doodles are created to celebrate special occasions like holidays, anniversaries, and even to commemorate the lives of famous artists and scientists. 

Perhaps not many of you know that Google's Doodle concept originated in 1998. It started when Google founders Sergey and Larry manipulated the corporate logo so that it will show their attendance at the Burning Man festival in Nevada. That became the germ of an idea for something bigger and in 2000, the founder asked webmaster Dennis Hwang to develop a doodle for Bastille Day. They liked the result and the people's response to the Doodles hence, from then on it became a permanent fixture in Google.

Today, Google doesn't only make doodles that have significance in the United States but to the whole world as well. And as of now, over a thousand doodles have been produced already. That's expected because 1998 to 2011 is a long time I'm sure you'll agree.

October 15, 2011

My Fashion Blog is a Winner at the 1st Annual Bloggy Awards!

I received a great news today and until now I still can't stop smiling! It's like I'm still in blogging heaven because my fashion blog "Pretty, Cute and Outrageous" won as the Best Fashion Blog at the 1st Annual Bloggy Awards. This event aims to recognize the skills of Bicolano bloggers/writers.

Three of my blogs were nominated in different categories. In My Silent Lucidity was nominated for Best Personal Blog while This Side of the Game was a contender in the Best Hobby and Recreation Blog. My Pretty, Cute and Outrageous was actually nominated in three categories namely Best Fashion Blog, Best Beauty Blog, and Best Blog Design but out of these three, Pretty Cute only came out for Best Fashion Blog! But I'm happy it won! I never dreamed this little hobby of mine would get some recognition someday but hey that day has come!

Winning the Best Fashion Blog just makes me even more inspired to write and share everything that is beautiful, chic and trendy to all you fashionatics out there! And to the Bicolano Blogger Republic thank you all so much for this recognition! 'Til next year!

October 12, 2011

Angry Birds Make an Angry Me!

One of the popular games that people, young and old, are going gaga over is Angry Birds! My brother-in-law, that's my sis' husband, has this game in their PSP console, so I got to try it. My first exposure to this game annoyed me so much because I could not figure out how to manipulate the angry birds so that they'll knock down the blocks of ice and wood that protect the little sarcastic piggies!

Each time I take a shot and miss those pigs just smirk even more. How I wanted to wipe that smirk off their faces that time, with my bare hands not with the angry birds anymore. I know that's funny but this game can really drive you mad!

Since my brother-in-law's PSP wasn't accessible all the time, I tried to find a free online version of Angry Birds and luckily I was able to find one. But it was only a limited one. Once I started playing Angry Birds' online version I could not stop! The first few levels were a breeze but as I neared the end, it became more difficult. I had to come up with very good strategies in order to kill those smug pigs. The last levels took me several tries before I was able to kill all of them bad and smug pigs! Ha!

Since I finished all the levels in the limited online version, I'm thinking maybe I should buy the game? So that I can play it unlimited!

Anyone play Angry Birds?

October 8, 2011

Steve Jobs Lives on in My iPod Nano

The whole world was shocked when news about Apple co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs circulated in the Internet. I felt really sad when I read about this news last Thursday. Steve died at the age of 56. It was no secret that in recent years Steve suffered from ill-health. He had some form of pancreatic cancer in 2004 and has a liver transplant in 2009. However, it seems the cancer cells in his body weren't eliminated and continued to ravage his body to the end. Steve Jobs was a shadow of the vigorous man who led Apple to the peak of success. He looked really frail and gaunt during his last days.

Even though he's gone, I'll have something to remember him by, my iPod Nano. I think this is the 4th generation iPod Nano.. Still one without the camera. Steve Jobs is gone but his innovations will live on...

My 4th Generation iPod Nano

October 5, 2011

Senator Enrile on Philippine RH Bill

I don't usually dwell on topics that have anything to do with politics. However, there was news yesterday that seemed pretty interesting. As some of you probably know, the RH Bill is one of the hottest topics of debate here in the Philippines. I don't want to know if you're pro or anti, I just want to share this interesting snippet from the recent Senate plenary debate.

Senator Pia Cayetano's office released the transcript of the debate wherein Senator Juan Ponce Enrile said that the act of self-pleasuring a.k.a. masturbation is a form of abortion!

According to Senator Enrile, “And the question that bothers me is… Is the sperm alive? Is the ovum ofthe woman alive? I have consulted doctors and the answer is yes.

The sperm of a man cannot fertilize any egg, not the egg of a whale, or a lizard, or a bird, or a fish, but only the egg of a woman. And neither can the egg of a woman be fertilized by any other sperm except the sperm of a man, so that these two elements must be together to create life. But each one of them has life. There is no question about that because they have mobility: They move; they develop.”

RH Bill co-author Pia Cayetano countered, “So, if a man and a woman are sleeping together as husband and wife and a man avails of the withdrawal method and ejaculates outside the vagina of a woman, that is ‘interference’ in the same way a condom would be, because the man and the woman decided not to allow the egg and the sperm to meet, is that his Honor’s position?”

And senator Enrile replied,  “Well, if the man wants to satisfy himself by manipulating himself alone, if it is only for pleasure, then it interferes with the production of life. That is my belief. That is a matter of faith to me.”

It was an interesting debate indeed! Any thoughts on Senator Enrile's idea?

Source: ABS-CBN News

September 25, 2011

My Blog's New Strade Template!

Presenting my blog's new look!
After looking so hard for a new template, I was finally able to settle on one design. It's a huge change from my previous template styles. I was aiming for a more readable blog template that's why I chose the Strade Blogger Template. It's a modified wordpress template by Lasantha and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0. 

This template has a white background with gray accents. I especially like the presentation because it displays my important links more prominently. I also like the way the Share buttons are displayed on the first sidebar. It's easily viewable so any viewer who wants to share my content can easily do so! My blog's popular posts are on awesome display as well. 

However, I had to tweak some of the elements of this template since some of them don't suit my blog's content. One of the biggest changes is the header. I removed the elements next to Home since I don't need them. Well, I was planning to replace them with something else but I couldn't make them work so I just removed the code for now. 

I also placed the look of the original Strade Blogger Template for you to see the changes.  
Orginal Strade Blogger Template
The template still needs some work to be the way I want it to be, but for now I do hope you like this new look! 

Do you like my blog's new look or not?  

September 21, 2011

Needing a New Look for My Blog

You know what? I really envy those new blogs out there. They all just look sooo good! Compared to them this blog is so drab to look at. No don't deny it, I know you think that way too. I haven't changed this blog's look for a very long time. Although I changed the background color a few months ago, the layout remains the same. 

You see, this layout was originally a 2-column one. Back then there wasn't many great choices of 3-column template with dark background and that was what I wanted! So, what I did was get a dark-themed 2 column template and tweaked some of its codes.
My blog's present look, drab isn't it?
I did not do it by myself; if it were i wouldn't know where to start! I remember asking my friend Dexter to help me out in altering some of the codes. He was a bit of an expert in these things already then and even more so now, so he helped me change it from 2-column to a 3-column template. A lot of codes needed to be changed actually that if you ask me to remember what they were I would not be able to remember anymore! So please don't ask me. 

Anyway, I've been thinking about replacing my blog's template. I want it to look new and dynamic with all the new sharing widgets included. I also want a template that will optimize my adsense. I'll try to look for a great new template for my blog. But is there a great blogger template you could recommend to me? I want t 3-column template with neutral color. I would appreciate your help a lot! 

September 5, 2011

Write My Name in the Sand

I came across this very nice quote and I thought of the way I wrote my name in the sand whenever we go to a beach. So I thought why not share it here?

By the way, the quote goes like this:

"I wrote your name in the sand , but the waves washed it away. I worte your name on my hand , but I washed it the next day. I wrote your name on a piece of paper but I accidentally threw it away. I wrote your name in my heart and forever it will stay."

My name written in the sand of Subic Beach Matnog

I still have to find other photos of my name written in the sand of some beach we went to. This just gave me a great idea! I'm going to make a habit of writing my name in the sand every time we go to a beach! 

Nice idea eh?

August 30, 2011

Sea, Sand and Sun at Subic Beach, Matnog

Who is attracted to beaches? especially ones with pure, white sand? I AM! And I had a chance to visit this heavenly wonderful place in Matnog, Sorsogon where the sand in not just white, it's pinkish white which is more beautiful. I can sincerely say that it's like paradise on earth.The place I'm talking about is Subic Beach, in Calintaan Islands, Matnog, Sorsogon.

Good thing the weather was great yesterday. The sea was not so rough and we were able to enjoy the sea, sand and sun to the max!

One of the sights along the way to Subic Beach

First glimpse of Subic Beach :)

The shores we passed by gave a hint of what to expect. The white sand and crystal clear waters that the boat passed on heightened my excitement about the place even more. And truly, my first glimpse of Subic Beach took my breath away! It was so beautiful! It exceeded my expectations. 

I know some of you won't believe it without evidence so here are some pictures!

August 23, 2011

My First 15K Fun Run!

It was town fiesta in Guinobatan last week, August 14-15 to be exact. Although as Seventh-Day Adventists we don't celebrate this kind of event. It was just for fun that we joined the Fun Run activity organized by some of the Sangguniang Kabataan officers.

My friend Mandy was the one who informed me about the event. It so happened that I was home again in Guinobatan during the weekend so I decided to join. We enjoy hiking and just being with nature; since it's been a while since we got the chance to do that, this Fun Run activity was heaven sent. So we immediately registered and got the shirts to be worn for the activity. 

The categories included 3K, 5K and 15K. We decided to join the 15K Fun Run. From the municipal ground the route was to San Rafael-Maipon-Masarawag-Muladbucad Pequeno-Bubulusan-San Jose-Inascan-Banao-Guinobatan proper. I know! So far isn't it? Well it really is! I didn't want to finish it actually but my companions didn't want to give up halfway so  decided to stick it out. When we were in Banao that's when one of our companions said we should ride and so we did. I was so thankful we did because my feet were really hurting a lot by that time. 

But then it was a very enjoyable experience for me. It was my first time to join an official Fun Run activity. At least I can proudly say that I was able to join in one at least once in my lifetime! 

Here are some of our photos! 
Me Before leaving home

Got my number!

Running Mates!

August 14, 2011

Meet My New Shawbike

Although I didn't have a bike when I was younger, I was able to learn how to ride one. If I remember correctly, I learned from my Grandfather's bike. It was an old-fashioned one. It had a side-car attached to it but we remove it when we wanted to learn how to balance. Luckily I was able to learn through that bike, though not without some cuts and bruises!

Japanese Surplus Bike
After 29 years, I finally own a bike of my own so I can pedal around to my heart's content! The one I bought is a Japanese style bike. I actually bought it two weeks ago when I saw it in Ligao City. I fell in love with its basket the first time I laid eyes on it! It reminded of bikes used on Korean novelas :).
Reminded me of Korean Novelas
I knew then I just got to have it so next day I bought it with the help of my brother and sister-in-law. My sis-in-law alternately pedaled from Tuburan, Ligao City up to Muladbucad. My legs were really challenged by the task! It was tiring but fun at the same time! By the way I named it Shawbike.

Here are some pictures of my bike and our time biking! Enjoy!

My brother enjoying the bike

Sis-in-law posing with the new bike

Me posing with my Shawbike

August 2, 2011

What Typhoon Juaning Left Behind

Another strong typhoon hit Albay last week. The typhoon named Juaning left the province devastated once again. Guinobatan, Ligao, and Polangui were hit the hardest. The streets were flooded once again; the water reached almost to the knees in some locations while other had higher water levels.

I went home last weekend and I saw for myself the damage that Juaning brought to my hometown. The road in Maipon was impassable again. I wasn't able to see the place but according to my mother and bro, the sand brought by the flood was so high that it was really impossible to drive through. It's been a week now so perhaps the local government of Guinobatan had the problem fixed already. I wasn't able to take pictures of the site, which is too bad.

Ligao Bridge
Anyway, on Sunday afternoon we went on a drive to Ligao for an errand (I'm going to tell you more about this errand in my next post; maybe tomorrow). My brother, sis-in-law and I went to the Ligao bridge because I wanted to take some pictures of the damaged bridge there. Buses, jeepneys and private vehicles won't be able to make a shortcut to Tabaco via this bridge because it's totally damaged! The foundations are totally exposed now and if another strong flood comes along,  think it would collapse totally. Hope they get this fixed soon too!

Ligao Bridge
Ligao Bridge's exposed foundation

July 22, 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2- Relived!

I was able to watch the last installment of the Harry Potter series last weekend. I have to say that it was up to my expectations. It really put what book says into action and great visual effects. And I felt sad, almost teary, watching some of its parts because it was like Harry, Ron and Hermione were really saying goodbye. There was even one scene, almost at the end, when the three of them standing amidst the rubbles on the the tower of Hogwarts that looks as if the audience was being give the chance to see the three of them together for the last time. 

Warner Bros. and director David Yates were able to recreate exactly that scene in the Deathly Hallows book when Harry Potter wake up at King's Cross. But it wasn't exactly the usual scene he woke up to. All around him were pristine white walls, white benches and blinding white light. As he walked, Harry saw something underneath one of the white benches near him; when he leaned closer he saw this small, bloodied creature all curled up and clearly wounded. It was Voldermort. His spirit almost dying and he didn't even know it.

Another scene that touched me was the one where Neville Longbottom stood up against Voldemort. Most of the students and Hogwarts teachers were already in despair because they thought Harry, whose prone form was carried by Hagrid, was already dead and hope is lost for all witches, wizards and mankind. The fact that so many died during the fight including Tonks and her husband Professor Remus Lupin, and one of the twins Fred Weasley, did not help either. But Neville brought back hope with his positive and inspiring words as he simultaneously pulled the sword of Gryffindor out of the Sorting Hat and attacked Voldemort and the Death Eaters. 

Oh those were some of my favorite scenes. And with the series over, I can only relive the magic time and again by immersing myself in the books and copies of the movies. It was great growing up with you Harry Potter!

July 13, 2011

Excited for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2!

Is there anything that you feel most excited about lately? Well, I do have one thing! It's the last installment of the Harry Potter series! I've read all the books (finished reading all of them a long time ago) and watched all the seven movies. I made it a point not to miss any one of them. In a way, I kind of grew up with the Harry Potter characters. 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is going to be a nostalgic movie. You see it's really the last movie of the franchise. After this, there will be no more magical world to lose one's self in. No more spells to cast and no more adventures to look forward to because at the end of the movie, the world will be at peace again. Lord Voldemort will be no more; peace and goodness will reign. Yup I already know how the movie will end but I'm still very excited to see how things happen with my eyes not only with my imagination. 

Based on the trailer released, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is going to be an action-packed movie! It's also going to have some flavors of drama, romance, and a moral lesson. Oh I can hardly wait to see it! It's going to be a date for me and my Mama this weekend! Ma also happens to be an HP fanatic! ;)

Are you going to watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2?

July 4, 2011

Review: Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon

Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon is one of the most awaited movies this year. Being big transformers buff, my hubby and I wouldn't miss it for the world! We were lucky to be able to watch it the other day! IN 3D! I know most of you out there have probably watched 3D movies so many times before. It was the first time for me and hubby and it was quite an experience.

But more than the 3D factor, Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon has a great story line. It's a story of deception, friendship, and survival. To those who haven't watched it, this is a spoiler. Sentinel whom Optimus Prime revived with the spark turned out to be a traitor. It seems that from the very start, Sentinel already made a deal with Megatron that someday they will bring back Cybertron and the two of them will rule. And the place they will use to recreate Cyberton in is Earth and will make the people as their slaves.

In order to spare Earth from the threat of destruction, the government sided with the Decepticons. Earth's government exiled the Autobots. But the space shuttle was shot down even before it even got out of the Earth's atmosphere. At this point, the question is, is there still hope for earth? Sam Witwicky (Shia Labeouf)  thinks so and even if there wasn't he was determined to save his new girlfriend Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley) who was held captive by a Decepticon supporter Dylan (Patrick Dempsey a.k.a McDreamy in Grey's Anatomy).

So, off they went in the heart of Chicago where Sentinel and the Decepticons are setting up the pillars that will recreate Cybertron. When Sam, Epps and a bunch of other guys were nearing Chicago they were ambushed by Decepticon bots. When they though it was the end but then rescue came! The Autobots were still alive. Together they came up with a strategy to destroy the pillars and Megatron and Sentinel's army. This part of the movie was the most violent of all. It's like the entire city of Chicago was destroyed.

The highlight of the last part was the fight between Optimus Prime and Sentinel and Megatron. In the fight, Optimus lost one of his arms but he tore both Megaton and Sentinel apart! Victory was still theirs!

Transformers 3: is an awesome movie! So, if you haven't watched Transformers 3, better make a schedule now!

Here's the official trailer to whet your appetite!

July 1, 2011

Birthday Trip Treat

About two weeks ago, hubby and I went on a little weekend getaway. It was the weekend leading to my birthday so it served as an advance birthday celebration. Instead of just going to Legazpi, which is just an hour from our place, we chose to go a little bit farther to Naga City. Monday was a holiday then so we stayed there overnight.

Sunday dawned as a fine day, which was a good thing since we'll be roadtripping in the motorcycle. We stopped over at the Camsur Watersports Complex (CWC) in Pili. Surprise, surprise, there were lots of people there that time unlike when we were there in December. After a few minutes of picture taking we proceeded to Naga City. After resting a bit we went to SM for some window shopping, yup just window. We tried out the cinema there. The movies being shown during that time were Green Lantern, Super 8, and a Tagalog flick.Our first choice was Green Lantern but changed it to Super 8 instead. It was a good alien movie.

The next day we visited the old churches in the city like the Basilica. I forgot the names of the other catholic churches.

Anyway, it was a fun time. Thinking about it makes me want to go on a road trip again!

June 22, 2011

My 29th

It's been a while since I last wrote anything in here. But today, I just suddenly found myself here, wanting to write something...anything. This day is supposed to be a happy day for me but I don't feel happy. I just feel forlorn and  alone. I'm at a place where everything I dreamed of are not what they're supposed to be. It's that feeling of wanting to reach a place that seems so beautiful from afar only to find that it's not that beautiful on a closer inspection. It's the same way about people. Sometimes you think that you know a person too well only to find that you hardly knew them at all.

Today marks the 29th year of my life and I'm still learning a lot about people and life in general. I just hope that this year would be a great one for me despite the drawbacks in my life right now. Celebrate with me?

February 7, 2011

Ride to Ligñon Hill!

After a long. long time I was finally able to step on the peak of one of the popular tourist spots here in Albay. Care to take a guess which one? It's Ligñon Hill! Yesterday, Sunday February 6, 2011, marks my first time at Ligñon. Some of you might be thinking, "What? An Albayana who's never been to Ligñon?" Well it's true. I've always just looked up at it in the past, thinking to myself when will I be able to go see the top? Going up is not a difficult feat actually since you can hike or ride a motorcycle. I just couldn't find the time before.

Anyway, yesterday's trek was unplanned but good thing I had my camera with me. Honestly, I felt kinda queasy and scared as Ryann and I were going up in the motorcycle. I dare not look around and down! I was thinking, if the brakes become faulty on our way up we won't stand a chance. But good thing we made it up safe and sound.

It was very clean on top and I loved the breeze! You can really see the whole of Legazpi from there. And of course, a great view of Mayon Volcano. It was just too bad Mayon's peak was covered by clouds and we could only see the base.

Going there was fun and we were able to get some great pictures! I hope to go there again soon but I'd like to try walking to the top instead of riding!

January 6, 2011

Bits and Pieces of December 2010

2011 is here! New Year but does it really mean new beginnings? Well it really depends on how you want to start the year. Some people make New Year resolutions, but I don't. I made some in the past but was not able to follow through with them. So better not make them. I'll just have to do my best in what I do this year; as one song goes "No Promises."

Anyway, I'm not writing about the New Year. I just want to share with you my readers (if ever there are) how I spent my holidays.

First of all we were able to attend the Thanksgiving and Praise Program at the Naga View Adventist College. Though we went there kind of late already. We went Friday and the program already started on Wednesday. I say we because I was with my fiance Ryann. Also, the Muladbucad  bretheren were there ahead of us. It was very rainy!

We went there by motorcycle, so we had to stop once in a while to avoid getting thoroughly drenched. There were lots of people and tents all over the NVAC grounds. But then it wasn't as many as the family camp back in 2000. But it was still great nevertheless. Rye was able to see some of his very close friends and former classmates at NVAC.

And before we proceeded to NVAC on Friday, we made a quick detour to Camsur Watersports Complex in Pili. It was a very rainy day so we weren't able to see everything. We just stayed in the little kiosk by the water until the rain subsided somewhat.

These are some of the things I've been up to during the holidays.