ksolaris: (dark zelda)
I swear, if I ever meet the Tooth Fairy one of these days... I WILL ROB HER BLIND. AT GUNPOINT.

Rants. Tooth issues. Money Worries. The usual. )

AAAAAAGH.

Why doesn't money grow on trees? Just this once? T_T
ksolaris: (nana)
*stretches and yawns*

Yes, as I've mentioned in a previous post, this is my first rest day in two weeks and I plan to make the best of it. And yes, as the title of this post suggests, I skipped work yesterday because I was seriously starting to feel like my body was about to just simply fall apart. I needed the break more badly than I thought I did. Thankfully, I still have some paid leave credits at my disposal, so I don't have to worry about my salary getting affected whenever I do decide to take some extra time off. Hehe.

Anyway, yesterday was great. I managed to catch some proper sleep, I made dinner for Lem and myself, and at 3am this morning, as we sleepily cuddled under the sheets to a cold morning, we both suddenly woke up for some reason, and found ourselves discussing characters from the Marvel comic book Universe until about 5am. That was awesome, and I suggest that everyone give it a try some time. 

Then, Lem and I also decided to spend one of my days off at his parent's condo at The Columns on Ayala Avenue, so that we can finally test out the pool on the seventh floor deck. Oh, and so that we can also test out Lem's newly-purchased swimming shorts as well, haha! The weather's been rainy and very windy lately, but when we woke up this morning, the clouds seem to have all gone, and the chances of having a good dip in the pool currently seem very promising.

When Lem went to work this morning, I've already deposited our stuff in their condo, and the first thing that I did then was take a quick shower, put on my swimsuit and head for the pool! Whee!! The pool was still frighteningly cold when I waded in, but the sun finally came up and I was able to adjust to the temperature.

By the way, note that I said "waded in", and "having a good dip in the pool". That's because I can't actually swim, and despite all the trips I've taken to Puerto Galera and Antipolo, water just isn't my element and I sink faster than a rock. That doesn't stop me from jumping in anyway, though, haha! And yes, I do just spend my time tip-toeing around the pool and trying my best to learn how to at least float, and as weird as it sounds, I actually do manage to enjoy myself that way.

Going back to the topic at hand, I had the pool to myself and I was wading around happily in it until about 7:30 am. It did me tons of good as I did find myself very relaxed and very refreshed afterwards. I then toweled off, headed back up to the room and showered, before heading back downstairs and accross the street to a nearby JolliJeep to have breakfast. 

That's what I like so much about the location of Lem's family's condo. You have access to all these wonderful facilities which is exclusive to the residents, which of course makes one look filthy rich. On the other hand, despite the expensive neighborhood and the proliferation of Starbucks branches, there's still the option to eat good meals at dirt-cheap prices, and quite frankly, Lem and I just can't imagine life without access to these sorts of eateries. 

As a bonus, accross the street from the JolliJeeps is my office building where I have access to free coffee and hot choco (which I occassionally take home with me from time to time... cough...), and in the same building is a 2GO Courier office which also offers free internet usage (limited to 1 hour, but still...). So yeah, that's the way to go, I think. XD

Hehe... sorry, I'm a cheapskate AND I'm broke, so there. XD
ksolaris: (airbender)
Sometimes, I can't help but wonder at my own luck, or think that maybe somewhere, there really IS someone out there looking out for me, discreetly planting little things for me to find that would unexpectedly and inexplicably help me out of whatever rut I've landed myself into again.

For example, I've posted quite recently that I have become penniless, about four hours after having received my latest paycheck. I was seriously very worried about how the heck I was supposed to make 700 pesos last for 15 days, but it looks like things may be panning out for the better afterall. For one thing, a week before payday, and before I realized that I would be left with just about nothing after we pay off all our bills, I've decided to finally put up for sale the old PS2 that [profile] jylichanhas so generously donated to us last January. 

Our apartment just got robbed about a week before, when he dropped by to make those evil, evil fried Snickers bars of his, and also to drop off the PS2. It didn't come with any peripherals at all, and he has warned us that the unit may or may not be functional, but we figured that any help is definitely welcome. Besides, Lem and I have been known to make do with whatever we may have at the moment. 

Anyway, going back... so I put the PS2 up for sale on eBay, stating rather clearly that the unit has its flaws, but much to our surprise (and Jyli's utter disbelief), the unit got sold. Lem met up with the buyer just this Friday, the sale was made without a hitch, and I now have a thousand pesos in my pocket. Just in time, too, since my resources have dwindled down to about 50 pesos at that time. If it hadn't been for that sale, I may have had to literally walk to and from the office everyday until I figured out a way to get more money.

Yep, after having kept the broken (?) PS2 unit around for about six months or so, I suddenly decided to sell it on a whim, and lo and behold, it has apparently saved my skin once again.

What never fails to amuse me is the fact that often, I would have this one thing that I have for sale, which would ONLY get sold at a time when I actually badly need the money. For example, when I quit my job at Sutherland years ago, I was jobless for a month, and we didn't know how we were going to pay for our bills and rent. Then, this ugly old jewelry box that I've had up on eBay for MONTHS but never got sold... suddenly got sold, bought by this lady for the full listing price. The buyer even gave a tip.

Another time while I was still with QJ, I bought this Vodafone-locked cellphone off of eBay, but I couldn't use it since our local hackers haven't quite figured out how to unlock it yet. It sat in my closet for about a year. Then, when I quit QJ last year and I was once again wondering how to make ends meet, the Vodafone unlock codes were released to the general public, and the phone was readily bought by Marlon, one of my high school friends. Yes, I didn't know it, but it just so happened that he wanted a second phone with a camera that costs only about 6k pesos, and it also just so happened that I had a phone for sale, that has a camera, and I was selling it for 5.5k pesos. He paid me 6.5k for it.

Wow. Moments like this makes me wonder if I did something really nice in a past life. Either that, or trumpets blare inside my head as a disembodied voice announces, "CONGRATULATIONS! YOU HAVE SUCCESSFULLY ROLLED LUCK!"

Sigh. Anyway, moving back to the present... 

As a last ditch effort, I also decided to empty out my PayPal account a couple of days ago. I had about $40 on there, which I was planning to use for a year's worth of paid LJ goodness, but first things first, I suppose. ^_^;; The money I withdrew from PayPal won't reach my bank account until some time next week, but the 1k I just got should be enough to tide me over until PayPal does its magic.

Meanwhile, it has also crossed my mind that, if I'm so lucky, then how come I'm not winning the lottery? Or picking up a case full of money? Or even winning a toaster from the office raffle? Well, I've always figured that the reason for that is because the Universe knows that I would most likely do something sinister with the money and the toaster, had I been given the chance. Like buying a golden bathtub and filling it with Cheetos. Or tossing a live toaster into the office gym shower while someone I don't like is in it.

Oh well.

Wherever you are, whoever you are, thank you. Seriously. :)
ksolaris: (Default)
Yep, in a matter of 4 hours, I managed to go from person-who-just-got-paid-for-two-weeks-worth-of-work, to complete and utter HOBO. Yep, between 5:30 am and 9am today, I went from 100 to 10, deceleration at its finest. It's a personal record, I tell you. XD

Lolz. Well, it isn't all bad. For one thing, at least everyone we owe money to has been paid. I paid off the money that I borrowed from Kate the last time, and she's withdrawn it from the airport and she's now taking the cash to Singapore in a couple of hours, where she'll be staying for the next 2 years or so (sniff! Bon Voyage!!). We also paid 2 months's worth of rent in one go so that our account with our landlady can finally be up to date. We've deffered several months' worth of rent right after our apartment got robbed last year, and we've struggled to make ends meet since then. Thankfully, our landlady is a really nice person, and she didn't throw us out of our apartment even though we're a few payments late. But then, I suppose that it also helps that we've never missed a payment at all, until that incident. ^_^;;

Oh yeah, and then we also paid for our bills. And I also paid for my parents HMO plans. By the end of it all, I had about 1500 pesos left.

That is, until I went to the grocery just a while ago and purchased enough food that I can cook for Lem and myself for the next two weeks, until next payday. It's tiring and all, but it's still so much cheaper to just cook for yourself instead of eating out.

Now, I have about 700++pesos left (and counting, as I type this in a net cafe) which I will have to stretch for the next 15 days. That basically translates to:

- no taxi rides
- no eating out
- no imported junk food
- definitely no over-priced, yummy coffee (unless I earn some more Starbucks GCs from work)
- no bargain books or second-hand clothes
- no shopping for lace and pretty ribbons for more loli sewing projects
- and definitely no impulse purchases from eBay

Sigh....

Putting things in perspective, though, I'm still glad that all that's done and over with, and I'm looking forward to NEXT payday since our obligations will be much lighter by then. I've already set my mind on buying oodles more lace, a new book, and a big bag of Cheetos.

After that, we can finally set about getting ourselved a new PS2 and maybe even replace the laptop that was stolen from us. ^_^

Anyway, just a parting shot before I go back home to get some sleep (had to get up early to give away my salary and all...).

K's picture of the day:



Purchased from the grocery a month ago. The world's horniest pair of tamarinds. Bow.
ksolaris: (nana)
K's photo of the day:


Chorus of cans. Hehe... mini-trash bins sold at Japan Home. We bought one of them white bunnies when we first moved to South Star Plaza. It apparently has relatives. :D




--------------------------


I've been rather preoccupied over a lot of things recently, and first and foremost on my mind has been our impending move. Yep, we'll be moving house again before the year ends, and though it's still quite a number of months away, Lem and I have been mentally preparing for the arduous task ahead. We've been planning how to start packing our stuff away, how to start cleaning the old place before we leave, which truck company to hire, how to arrange everything in the new place, possible new commute routes to and from work, etc, etc, etc...

I've already lived at NINE addresses to date, and this next move will be my tenth in eight years. I'm telling you, even though I've done this many times before, it never gets any easier. As Lem and I have learned, though, it still does pay to plan ahead to at least try to minimize rough edges as much as we can.

Anyway, one VERY good thing about this next move would be the fact that we will no longer have to pay for rent, and that... is just AWESOME. We can actually AFFORD things once we move. Of couse, as I've told [livejournal.com profile] jylichan over YM recently, I do fear an imminent shopping spree once we discover our spanking-new purchasing power, but once that's over and out of our system, I realized that it's time that I finally got down to it and started on finally, finally, FINALLY doing something to improve myself. I am long overdue for an upgrade.

For the past year or so, I've been having this really bad itch to do something, ANYTHING, that would help me improve myself. I want to take language classes, photography classes, art classes, programming classes, cooking classes, baking classes, design classes... anything that I can possibly take on that would allow me to broaden or improve upon my skills. I want to LEARN.

And then, of course, I want to finally earn my degree.

As you all know, I'm still an undergraduate. I spent four years in Architecture, but I was never able to reach the fifth and final year due to a severe lack of money at that time. I decided to start working then, and I haven't really had much time for anything else after that. Everything that I learned along the way, I had to learn by myself during my free hours since I had no money for formal lessons or courses, so most of the things that I know are rather rough, or half-baked at best, and that really gets to me sometimes.

That's why, when Lem and I realized that we'll actually have more money after the move, everything that I've been only THINKING of doing so far, suddenly resurfaced from whatever nook in my brain they decided to hide themselves in. The sheer possibility of realizing those plans and ideas makes me giddy.

I guess what I just really want to say is that... I'M VERY EXCITED at the prospect of going back to school, or at least learning new things.

That's why lately, I found it quite serendipitous that [livejournal.com profile] ruk has mentioned to me in a previous post that Asia Pacific College has some sort of program specifically for undergrads like me, and Lem's mom has also given me a heads up about UP's Open University Program. Meanwhile, Lem has suggested De La Salle - College of Saint Benilde, as they have programs that are especially-tailored for people who are also working full-time.

So, with the hope of going back to school in 2009, I've been sending off inquiries and weighing my options for the past few weeks, and so far, I've been considering these schools:

ASIA PACIFIC COLLEGE Executive Program
Pros:
- According to Ms. Bea (hehe... I suddenly found that I like calling you that... XD), this program involves classes that are held on Saturdays.
- By the end of the program, I would have earned an MA.
- From the looks of it, I qualify for APC's Socialized Financial Assistance grant. Afterall, I'm officially the only employed person in my family, and my annual income falls below the 300,000.00 limit. If I do get 35% off of my tuition (provided I take the admissions test and get accepted...), that would be a great help, and I'll be able to pay for my own fees.
- If I find that I like the environment, I may actually enroll again and take up their MultiMedia Arts Course, hopefully under a grant as well. It isn't Architecture, but at least it's close and it's something I enjoy doing.
- I THINK, that some of the units that I've previously earned at UST MAY quite possibly be credited, so I don't have to take up English and Filipino and... brrr... Algebra again.

Cons:
- Business attire is required to be worn at all times at this college, and as you all know, I prefer being a casual slob most of the time. I may have to overhaul my wardrobe just for this. ^_^;;;
- The prospect of a long commute from Quezon City to Magallanes in order to attend classes.
- The high cost of living that is associated with this school. I may have to prepare a budget for Starbucks coffee on a regular basis.

UP LOS BANOS Open University Program
Pros:
- It's UP. What else can I say?
- It's a long distance learning program, so no commuting to classes involved.
- The tuition should be well within my means, even without any sort of grant (again, provided I take the admissions test and get accepted...).

Cons:
- According to the website, I'll be required to complete PE as well as NSTP services. Even back in UST, I did everything that I possibly could to avoid these two banes of college life, so I seriously don't want to have to deal with this. T_T
- I think I may have to take classes like English and Algebra all over again, which sucks, big time. - The possibility of having to go to the UPLB campus in order to either enroll, or take up PE/NSTP courses.

DLSU - CSB School of Professional & Continuing Education (SPaCE) Program
Pros:
- The program is meant especially for working people who want to earn a degree.
- classes are in the evenings, so commuting shouldn't be a problem.
- They're offering business courses, which I don't mind, and which I'm also interested in.
- The campus is in the heart of Manila, an area which I am very familiar with, and is also just one ride from Quezon City
- They also have the BASAP financial assistance program which I may or may not qualify for... depending on how I declare my annual income. ^_^;;

Cons:
- I'm from UST, the mortal enemy of anything La Salle. I know that this is REALLY not the time for me to suddenly and inexplicably start showing any form of school spirit, but it still feels weird. ^_^;;
- As with APC, I fear the high cost of living that is associated with this school.
- If I don't qualify for financial assistance, I fear that the tuition may be too much for me to pay for on my own, and the last thing I want right now is to mooch off of other people after trying to be self-sustaining for this long.

I still do plan to work full-time even if I start studying again, but I'm not quite as worried about that as my current company also has a program that accomodates the schedules of working students.

Oh well, I shouldn't really get my hopes up just yet, especially since I don't even have the full details of those courses yet, and there's still about a bajillion things we need to straighten out first before I can turn my full attention to anything school-related again.

I have to admit that it feels very nice to have a plan, though. It's a start. :)

ksolaris: (Default)
That as the prices for food items goes up...



The prices for electronics goes down?



Yup, that's one hundred pesos for 2 kilos of uncooked rice, which Lem purchased from the supermarket some time last month. I swear, I was completely floored when I saw the receipt, because just a couple of weeks earlier, I bought better grade rice from the same supermarket for only 60 pesos.

Meanwhile, I was just as floored at how cheap memory cards are nowadays. I bought the MiniSD card for my cellphone at around the same time that the hundred-peso rice was purchased, and I was expecting to shell out about 1000Php for it. It turned out that 2GB can now be bought for a mere 500 pesos.

Honestly though, I still would have preferred that the trend be the other way around. At this rate, people may have to start eating memory cards because it's cheaper.

On the other hand, Lem and I have been considering switching to pasta as a substitute for rice, since a 15-peso packet is enough for three people, but then again, nothing compares to hot rice served with a tasty viand. We've also considered switching to bread... until we discovered that bread is just about as expensive as rice nowadays. Sigh.
ksolaris: (Default)
I just finished a lovely breakfast, and it's payday today, and I really should be pretty excited. Unfortunately, as I mentioned in my previous post, because I am now paying Php2,500 a month for my parents' healthcare, and there are bills and rent to pay, as well as groceries to buy, by the time all my obligations have been taken care of, I am left with a grand total of... not much. And I suspect it will be this way for a VERY long time, until I win the lottery and/or replace our current CEO (shhh, don't tell him yet...).

Sigh. Oh well. Love is such a hard thing, especially for one as capricious as myself. I can't help it if I have chronic stuff-itis.

At least I get some peace of mind, knowing that my parents could easily run to Makati Med should they ever need to. In fact, I've been encouraging both my parents to do just that at the slightest hint of an ailment, and make the most of whatever coverage their Maxicare cards offer. They're slowly getting used to the idea, which in itself is already a feat for me as both of them have long feared going to hospitals as they're too afraid of whatever costs it may incur. Hopefully, that attitude will change soon.

Yes, this is me consoling myself because my budget for a new pair of glasses has just been consumed by love. Bear with me.

--------------------------------

If you watch the news enough, you'd be amazed at the sheer amount of silliness there is in this world. Just this morning, as I was watching TV and waiting for Lem to finish getting ready for work so that I could shoo him out of the apartment and get some cleaning done, CNN had this short news feature.

According to CNN, a Japanese manufacturer has released a line of solar-powered bras that can produce enough energy which can be used to recharge cellphones. Of course, my initial reaction was a big, giant, "WHUT?????????" which was immediately followed by an indignant, "Japan, what the hell are you doing to your women???"

It HAS crossed my mind that the playing field should be leveled, and that a similar garment should be produced for men, though it WOULD of course be quite a sight.

Imagine speaking with a well-groomed Japanese businessman in a crisp, dark suit, and as he's texting, his phone battery dies out. As you're about to offer your own phone to be used, the Japanese man raises a finger, excuses himself, and proceeds to unzipping his pants. To your shock, he pulls out a wire out from his crotch and proceeds to plugging it into his phone. His phone is now connected to his groin. The phone starts charging, he goes on to finish sending off his text message, and he nonchalantly continues your conversation exactly where you left off, as you struggle to pick up your jaw from the floor.

... It almost sounds like a scene taken from Ultimate!! Hentai Kamen, doesn't it?

In other news, I also just finished reading an article in today's issue of the Philippine Star on how a Filipino family who was immigrating to Winnipeg, accidentally left their two-year-old in Ottawa as they scrambled to catch their connecting flight. The toddler was eventually found by Air Canada staff, calmly exploring the departure gate area. He was taken into their offices and babysat by AC's office staff, while the kid's dad took another flight from Winnipeg, back to Ottawa, got his kid at the airport, and then boarded yet another plane back to Winnipeg, this time with his kid on his lap. Apparently, it was another case of "I thought he was with YOU!!".

Susmaryosep. XD XD

Meanwhile, the Vatican's premier astronomer has just announced that they are not discounting the possibility that we may have brothers and sisters scattered throughout the galaxy. Calling all conspiracy theorists! On your mark, ready, set, GO!! XD

--------------------------------

To be honest, news like this cheers me up, considering just how much bad news has been floating around recently.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I now have to shop for enough groceries to keep us from ever having to eat out until next payday. T_T;;
ksolaris: (Default)
For one thing, when I was a student/bum, I didn't have to worry about things like insurance. Sigh.

Here's the thing:

I'm covered by my current company's HMO, and the health plan is GREAT. I love this.

The problem is that the only other people that they can cover for free would be my husband and children, if I had them. I was told that if I wanted to get health plans for my parents, I'd have to pay 1200php for EACH one of them, PER MONTH. So yeah, on top of witholding tax and the requisite deductions like SSS, etc etc, I'll also have to pay another 2400php A MONTH to give my parents proper health care.

...

GAH!!

Sigh. This is really going to make things harder for me, and I will have to redouble my efforts to save up, and budget and scrimp. In fact, I think this is the part where I get tested on just how hardworking I can be. This is the part where my willpower will get stretched to the limit.

Of course, I can just simply NOT get my folks health care plans... but I feel that it's important that I do this. They're getting old, and they have a lot of aches and pains that they complain about. For so, so many years, I've watched them self-medicate and second-guess, and just simply do ANYTHING it takes to avoid going to a hospital because they're too scared of whatever bill it may incur. I want them to stop doing that already. I want them to have themselves checked and treated as necessary without worrying about the costs of lab tests and consultation fees. Having them covered by the company HMO will make all that possible.

Sigh.

This is so hard on me.

On one hand, I want to save up, and buy myself all the things that I want, and eat at nice places whenever I want to. On the other hand, I know that I have a responsibility to keep, and that I will have more peace of mind with knowing that my parents can finally see a doctor whenever they need to.

I bet this wouldn't be so hard if I wasn't so damn greedy and capricious and shallow.

Sigh.

At the moment, the only answer to this dilemma that I can think of would be a TREMENDOUS amount of overtime work at the office. I'll also have to work extra hard so that I can be sure to grab all those performance bonuses each and every month. And I'll have to get promoted soon.

My Grand Plan (TM) must go on without a hitch so that I can give more, both to myself and the people that I love.
ksolaris: (Default)
The Soup Kitchen, Glorietta

--------------------------


*Yawn*

I really should be working right now, but I'm hungry, my head hurts, I'm not in the mood, it's cold and windy outside, the storm is on its way, the room smells of strawberries, I'm sleepy, no news is interesting right now... and so on and so forth.

Hehe. But no, really.

First up, before I go on, let me just say... VIVA MIYAMOTO!!!! ^___^

In any case, I haven't checked my salary yet, but I'm expecting that it won't be much because of the four days that I missed work because I got sick. On top of that, I've just been thinking last night that Ian and I will have to give up our phone line and internet connection once we move, unless PLDT actually agrees to transfer our line to the new place (the chances for which, I think, are nil). Anyway, until we settle in a new place and set our finances straight, the joys of a DSL connection and a landline will have to wait indefinitely. T_T

Sigh. Well, at least there are two good points to that:

- without phone and internet bills to pay for, maybe we'll finally be able to save up for that dream desktop unit that we want. Mmm... I can see it now. 19-inch LCD monitor, shuttle case, P4, 1GB RAM, 120GB HD... and that Badtz Maru keyboard and mouse set that I saw at Gift Gate once. Haha!

- in case we do decide to get a phone line and internet connection again in the future, at least we can now get GLOBELINES, dammit. Hopefully, we wouldn't have to bear with any more PLDT-exclusivity rules

- the lack of a phone line will finally be a good reason to convince Ian that YES, we need to get him a new mobile phone. We'd have to get him another Sun Cellular SIM card though so we can take advantage of their unlimited calls feature.

Oh well. When we move, it's going to be "Hello, internet cafes" all over again. I suppose it's alright since we rent to play Guild Wars anyway. I'm just bracing myself against the imminent shock that would be coming once Ian and I are disconnected from teh Intarwebs once again. :(

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ksolaris

September 2010

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