ksolaris: (nana)
I remember about a year ago, during one of my many trips to Serendra with Ian, I spotted these gorgeous rain boots displayed on a rack. I was surprised, because I've never seen a pair of big, rubber boots which were obviously meant for getting wet, which didn't look like the black or yellow ones that I normally saw being worn by traffic cops or construction workers. I wanted one so badly back then, but when I learned that a pair costs about 2000++ php each, I sadly had to put it down and walk away. Since then, I never forgot about the boots in different colors and cute patterns.

Fast forward to now.

Yep, this is me reviewing Plueys. Shoe photos under the cut. )

All in all: Plueys are <3
ksolaris: (nana)
I would like to take this opportunity to announce that after eight long years of searching and waiting, I've finally found a deck of tarot cards for myself, and I am very, very happy.

I first learned about tarot in elementary school, in an episode of Candy Candy. I still remember it very clealy: Candy decided to sneak out of the mansion for a day out with her aristocratic love interest, and of all the places they could have gone to, she took him to the circus where they had cotton candy, candied apples, hotdogs (I remember the guy being bewildered at having to eat food with your hands. I still find it funny until now...), and... a trip to the fortune teller.

My fascination grew in high school when I started watching paranormal shows on TV, and I also started hanging around some college students who liked to show off their tarot cards. I spent hours upon hours at the humanities section of the UST main library, as well as the UST Ecclessiastical library, just devouring any book on the topic I could get my hands on. I also did a lot of reading on astrology and ancient mythology during this time, which is to blame for the online username which I have been using all these years.

And then came college, when I met certain people from AEGIS and the UP Hill People, who were familiar with the art, as well as [info]magiqa who always brought her Vertigo deck around, and the rest of the UST co-op gang. It was the first time that I got to regularly see different types of decks in action, each with different personalities, and I got to watch as their respective owners gave their own unique interpretations. This taught me a lot of things about the tarot that I don't think any book can sufficiently explain, and I was very impressed and it looked like so much fun, so my fascination only grew.

So, since then, I've set my mind on getting myself a tarot deck of my own. Ive often been disappointed because of either the utter scarcity of the item at local specialty shops and bookstores, its tag price, or the few decks that I did fancy just simply didn't like me very much (a throbbing headache after walking around the shop for a few minutes with a certain deck in hand was just SO not worth it...), or ALL OF THE ABOVE. Haha! XD

So, last September 13 (yes, after attending Animania), and after dinner, we headed for the bookstore because of the huge banner at the front that announced that a sale was underway. I didn't expect to find any cards there, but Elea pointed me to the stack of cards behind the counter (it now seems rather apt that it was her who pointed me to my new cards, ne? Haha!)

There was a whole bunch to choose from at that time, but when I saw the Universal Fantasy deck from Lo Scarabeo, with the face of the Queen of Swords on the side of the box (I didn't even know which card it was at the time, since it was a close-up of her face), I fell in love. The bonus? It was on sale, and I didn't find out until I checked the receipt. Hehehehe...

She's pretty, ne? ^_^ Elea claims that the deck is rather emo, but it's actually not emo at all. The illustrations do remind me so much of either Magic Knight Rayearth (which will always be close to my heart, no matter what people say), and the feel of Final Fantasy XII (which is one of my all-time favorite games), which probably adds to it's LURVE factor for me.



Meet some of my favorites. :3 )

I love the artwork because I find it to be particularly lively and vivid, plus all those... um... swirlies all hearken back to my CLAMP fangirl days, which I don't think I've quite grown out of anyway. ^_^;;

I suppose another thing that I love about the deck is that it bases its illustrations on classic Rider-Waite symbolism and then some. This makes it easy for beginners like me who are only familiar with R-W, but find the original deck too boring, or just simply not fitting. On the other hand, despite the obvious reference, the illustrations also offer a bit more flexibility with the additions or rearrangements of some of the standard elements on some of the cards.

Long story short, I LOVE IT! ^_______^
ksolaris: (nana)

For the past two days, the office internet connection has been particularly lenient and has allowed us to get to sites that are normally blocked. It being the weekend and all, with very little work to do, I told myself that this would be a good chance to finally catch up on things and start posting entries which have been severely backlogged for months.

Things were going according to plan... until I realized that I can access both Plurk AND Facebook at work.

Needless to say, everything just went down the drain as I spent most of my time either Plurking or replying to people's Plurks, or playing D&D Tiny Adventures (by the way... ADD ME AND BUFF ME!!! KTHNXBAI!!). It's already a good thing that another Facebook app, Pet Society, doesn't load properly here at the office since our version of Flash is outdated. Otherwise, I don't think I'll even be able to do any work at all, and I'll just end up sitting in the office, playing for hours.

Anyway, I'm gonna try to make a coherent post. Remember, the key word here is "try"...

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

At the office, one of the first things that I do upon clocking in, is to check CNN for headlines as well as weather updates, since our work volume is pretty much dictated by how bad the weather in the US is. Now, what amazes me the most is how it is actually still possible to go to such a trusted news source and still come accross the siliest headlines. Like these, for example:


other prime examples of CNN lulz )

Now, I'm really fond of getting my daily dose of lulz online but, I supposed I just didn't really think that CNN would be such a good source for such things. I stand corrected, though. XD

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

Some time last month, a good friend of mine who doesn't have an eBay account of his own asked me to get him some perfume from eBay. I got it for him, and when we met up so that I can give him the product and he can give me the payment for it, I ended up being curious about this whole obsession with expensive scents.

To be honest, the most money that I've ever spent on scents would be for a 400-peso bottle of Plum Blossom-scented cologne-body-spray-whatever from Bath and Body Works. My friend, on the other hand, paid 1800 pesos for a 100ml tester bottle of perfume from Bvlgari, and at that rate, he claims that it was already very cheap as compared to its actual retail price in malls. When I asked him why he likes these things so much, he emphasized the importance of smelling good in all situations, all the time.

This whole conversation got me thinking about my one and only bottle of Clinique Happy (a gift from a relative) sitting in our bathroom for the past, oh, four or five years? Despite having had the thing for so very long that its shiny chrome cap is already starting to rust, the bottle still has about 25% of its original contents left. This suddenly made me very conscious, and I wondered how much I've been stinking all these years (yes, sometimes I'm thankful that I have gay friends who force me to realize things like this).

I then decided to try it out, and I asked my friend for some recommendations. He easily named three top picks:

- Dolce & Gabbana's Light Blue
- La Coste's Touch of Pink
- and GAP's Dream

With a shortlist like this, I felt a bit ready to try experimenting, but my next dilemma stems from the fact that:

- I'm poor and can't afford X thousand pesos worth of perfume that I may or may not like in the end
- I have no patience to go to a department store and strart harassing the perfume counter attendants
- I have no confidence to go to a department store and try to pick out a scent since I have no idea on what I'm doing
- I'm afraid of being pressured by a really good salesperson into buying something that I'm going to regret later on.
- I can't seem to trust my own nose, since more often than not, what I find strange has been well-liked by people around me, while what I thought to be nice turned out to be rather unpleasant.

So, I decided that I will have to find a way to acquire the perfume at much lower costs, AND I will also need to be able to "test drive" it, i.e. use it for a full day and see how it goes, before I settle on something that I would be willing to spend my money on. I looked up the prices of the perfume that my friend recommended and I nearly gagged, but thankfully, I discovered that the answer to all this was to buy sample bottles from eBay.

The whole thing is perfect, I tell you.

I get to buy and use authentic scents for really low prices, AND the sizes of the bottle seem to be just about right for me since I don't use it very often, as I've discovered that one apparently doesn't need very much of it in order to be smelled from accross the room. Also, as with most designer scents do, the scent lingers for the rest of the whole day and even sticks to your clothes even after it's been washed (this discovery, in turn, has led me to wonder how in the world some people can bear to spray themselves with strong perfume several times, about thrice a day, when a drop or two is actually sufficient). The fact that the bottles are tiny are also helpful since I can slip it into my bag or pocket with no problem.

So far, I've been very satisfied with the scents that I've tried, namely:

D&G Light Blue, which reminds me so much of the scent of goods when you've opened a balikbayan box from New York (all my relatives from my dad's side are there, and dad also sent us a lot of stuff when he stayed in New York for several years, back when I was in college).

Kenzo L'eau Par for Ladies, which was a gambit since I've never heard of it before, and which I only bought because... well, it was there. XD I'm actually very fond of it since it smells so very sweet, like some tasty, sticky, yummy fruit or flower. Hehehe. And yeah, Ian likes it, too, since the scent is light enough for his sensitive nose (not sensitive as in "picky, but sensitive, as in, he gets allergic and starts sneezing like crazy when he smells something harsh, like strong perfume.)

Hehe... I'm quite happy with my purchases and I'm thankful that I took up my friend's suggestions. I'm even happier that I found out that I can just do this, and at the rate things are going, I may end up just buying these tiny bottles from now on, since it fits my budget, my bag and my needs, and is relatively low-risk. So, YAY for gay friends and YAY for eBay! eBay has all the answers to life's little troubles! :D
ksolaris: (Default)
My work schedule has recently shifted again, and I somehow ended up with my former schedule, with me starting work at 12:30 am, and leaving the office at 9:30am. I actually do like this new (or old?) routine, since I don't have to deal with traffic, and by the time I leave the office, malls, banks and other establishments are already open and ready for me to frolic in.

Now, because of this new schedule, it also meant that the ukay-ukay place near our office which I frequent is already open by the time I pass by it on my way home... *cough*

So, I decided to pass by some time last week, and lo and behold! I was able to get TWO cotton yukatas for 50 pesos each! Hehe. It's nothing fancy. Each one is just white cotton with a repeating pattern printed on it in blue, or indigo if you want to be finicky about it. It's really more of the type that can be used for lounging around at home, or the ones you can find provided with your room at a ryokan or onsen, as opposed to one that you'd wear to a summer festival, since it's not quite as pretty.

I already have my own red-and-white yukata, but Lem has also been wanting one, waaaaaay back when I still lived by myself in Sampaloc and he saw me wearing my yukata. That's why when I saw the two white-and-blue ones for sale, I got them immediately. I also figured that it was unisex enough so that I can also use them if I wanted to. Hehe...

My only dilemma now is that the Yukatas don't come with an obi, or even a matching koshihimo. :(

Because of this, I've decided that I'll most likely just MAKE the damned things since I can't seem to find any place that sells it. Plus, even if I did, I figured that I'd most likely end up paying much more for the obi than I did for the yukatas themselves (but then again, that's relative, considering that the yukatas are only 50 pesos each...).

So, to outline the project, it looks like I'm going to be making...
  • about 4 lengths of koshihimo substitutes. I need only 2, but you'll never know when Lem might lose his, or if I might want to tie a proper obi...
  • one obi for myself (about 5 inches wide or so, according to
  • [info]magiqa and her friend)
  • one obi for Lem (about 3 inches or so, should be fine for a guy, right?)
Now, I'm still a little iffy with the lengths and widths that I need to work with. Can anyone point me to some reference material that I can possibly use? I'm considering dropping by the JFMO library one of these days to see if they possibly have any sewing patterns I can possibly photocopy and use, but I'm not sure if they even HAVE such material in the first place.

All this will have to wait until after payday though, when I can actually afford to buy some cloth. Hehe. Wish me luck.
ksolaris: (word up)
I have just recently found out that one of the most gorgeous and most ferocious women in the world (in my humble opinion anyway) has recently visited Manila to perform at Vicky Belo's birthday masquerade for a whopping 8 million pesos/ $200,000, no less. DITA VON TEESE WAS IN MANILA! AAAAAAAAAA~~~!!!!

I swear, that woman is someone that I would happily go gay for because she is made of SHMEXY. RAWR!



I learned about it from BryanBoy.com, where I first saw this photo (sans the MS Paint text). I was trying to find the photo again so that I could post it here but they seem to have just disappeared. I eventually found them all at PerezHilton.com which I've never even visited before, and from what I gleaned in the comments section, Dita's management has actually requested the more prominent Pinoy bloggers to take down the photos that they originally posted. It's really a shame since Dita is just too pretty to hide, haha! Thankfully, this blog is too insignificant anyway, so I'm sure nobody would mind, yes? XD

I've always had this major fascination with 30s-50s Americana, Vaudeville, as well as Burlesque (hence, my reluctant approval for the PussyCat Dolls' first album), and if I had the skin and the figure for it, goodness knows how my closet would look. That's also the reason why I treasure my one and only authentic satin and lace corset which I am currently struggling to fit into again. T_T

Also, I LOVE Dita's book, Dita von Teese and the Art of the Teese. I remember finding a copy of it at Buy-The-Book in WalterMart, and I spent about a full hour, just reading through it and ogling at the gorgeous photos. I couldn't afford it, though, even if it was already discounted, so I sadly put it back on the shelf. It wasn't until afterwards that I realized that my feet and legs hurt like hell since I was standing the whole time I was reading! XD

Yep, Dita von Teese. K's undisputed personal queen of corsets, garters, stilettos, lacy underwear and fishnet stockings.
ksolaris: (Default)
I've mentioned in a previous post that I've recently taken to sewing... well... things. I don't have any particular theme or specialty right now, and I just end up making stuff that I feel like making for that moment, so I end up making all kinds of weird things that I may or may not actually have use for later on. ^_^;;

Well, anyway, I've finally gotten the photos up, so I thought I'd post them here.

So, my first completed project (which was actually completed about two weeks ago or so) is this Lolita Headpiece that I made, which can also possibly double as a collar, as I discovered when I hung it on my mannequin to make space on our table.




And there you go. Of course, the sad part is that I don't own a Loligoth ensemble to use it with in the first place, and I don't have the guts to use it by itself with everyday clothes. So if you know anyone who might want to buy this, make better use of it and get it off my hands, please do send them my way. Just message me, if you like. I'm thinking of selling it for, maybe... 250.00 Php perhaps? Just enough to pay for the materials and the labor and the painful pinpricks? Hehehehe. ^_^;;

Anyway, that's the first. More to come soon! ^_^

DISCLAIMER: I'm afraid that I'm no authority on loli fashion, and I'm not even sure if what I made here justifies that rant that I posted way back in 2006 about misrepresentation and all... so... suggestions are welcome. ^_^;;
ksolaris: (Default)
First of all, a plug:

HELP THE PANDAS!

I was watching the news this morning, and CNN was running a story on how the recent earthquake in China ruined the panda research facility. In the clip, they mentioned that the main road that leads to the facility has been blocked, and the only way to reach the place would be to take a one-day detour. Because of this, the panda's fresh supplies of bamboo have been severely hampered.

I'm such a softie when it comes to animals, and this story just breaks my heart. I was thinking of giving a donation, but I don't think they accept PayPal. T_T

In my imagination, I'm hoping that Jordi steps in and helps the animals... T_T

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

For the past couple of weeks, I've been doing a lot of sewing. I don't know what got into me, but I was in the office one slow workday, and then I suddenly got this itch to make a loligoth headpiece. The next day, I found myself in a lace shop, going gaga over rolls of very pretty lace and ribbons. I made some purchases, and now I have two headpieces sitting in my closet, all pretty, packaged and ready for use. One is a black-on-black piece for a kurololi outfit, while the other one is mainly black with a white lace ruffle trim, with a rose piece.

Of course, it's occurred to me that I don't own a loligoth outfit to go with the headpieces, so I may just sell it eventually.

Anyway, a couple of days ago, a nearby ukay-ukay store had a discount day, and all garments sold for 20 pesos per piece. I walked away with about 7 pieces, one of which was this long, black, one-piece dress with long sleeves, which looked more like something a nun would wear, sans the white collar.

I actually intended to practice on this black dress/smock because as I was looking at it in the store, the only thought that was going through my mind was "It's really nothing that a needle and some thread can't fix." I intended to nip that thought in the bud, as I was under the impression that I was having another episode of misplaced over-confidence. So, I bought it and told myself that if I ended up butchering the dress, then it's no biggie since it's only twenty pesos anyway, PLUS I'd finally get that voice in my head to shut up.

I went home and trimmed the sleeves to a more reasonable length, but I thought that it would be such a waste if I just used the trimmed-off portion as a rag afterwards. Instead, with some hemming, and a bit of extra lace I had lying around, it turned into an arm accessory for - you guessed it - a loligoth outfit. It now looks like the thing that Jam Kuradoberi has on her arms, except it's in black, and would go well with a kurololi ensemble.

It HAS occurred to me that I seem to be accidentally building a whole ensemble anyway, piece by piece, but we'll see if anything else pops up from the scraps that I have at home. Who knows, maybe I'll end up selling a whole ensemble on eBay or something. I've considered wearing it myself, but I think that I'll need to slim down some more first and maybe get a Glutathione shot. Haha! Sorry, but I just don't have the pale complexion that goes well with the loligoth look, so I won't even dare try. Maybe I'll dress up someone else someday, I dunno.

As for the dress itself, it's wearable now, though it's still lacking some elements so my mannequin is still wearing it, with bits and pieces of lace and ribbon pinned to it, as I try to decide how to proceed. I plan to drop by the lace shop again soon to get more materials, especially since Lem made some interesting recommendations (I've been getting the feeling that he may be enjoying this as much as I am) and I want to try them out and see how it looks.

Apparently, it WAS nothing a needle and a bit of thread can't fix.

It's a lot of work though, since I don't own a sewing machine, and I don't know how to use one even if I did (I swear making ruffles by hand is a BITCH!), but it feels very good to be making something with my hands again that isn't food. Haha! I guess I do get a sort of rush with every finished product I churn out. ^_____^

Now that I've been bitten by the sewing bug, it also doesn't help that I watched a special on NHK about recycle fashion. So, the next time you see me buying a tattered/torn/old shirt, please don't panic just yet. I ain't going hobo. It's just me trying to gain more XP to level up my sewing skills.
ksolaris: (Default)
I would just like to take this opportunity to announce that:

- I have officially lost 4 inches on my waistline, and I'm striving to get it down to my original pre-pill-popping era waistline of 27in. Still a bit to go, but I think I can do it within the year.

- Some old pants are starting to fit again.

- Last December 31, I threw a hissy fit because there's this blouse that I wanted to use for New Year's Eve that I couldn't wear because it was bursting at the seams. Today, as I type this entry in a net cafe in Makati, I am now comfortably wearing that same blouse. Hopefully, before the year ends, I'll be able to start using a whole bunch of my old clothes again and save some money by not having to buy new ones.

- Last Sunday, I went to Antipolo with my friends to go swimming, and I wore a new swimsuit that actually fit me.

On top of those perks, I feel much healthier than I did last January, I no longer get winded as easily as before, and I no longer feel weighted down by my own mass.

I am now a disciplined eater. I bet I can even accelerate everything if I actually also exercised regularly, but first I need a cute proper pair of running shoes. The venue, schedule and a place to dump my stuff at have already been determined, but I now just need the gear (and a bit more motivation and fewer excuses) in order to get started, and that will come soon. However, NOTHING will ever get me to start using the office gym again. Sorry.

All in all though, I just wanted to say that...

Today, I feel awesome.
ksolaris: (Default)
I was channel-surfing a couple of days ago, when I happened to stop at Discovery Channel, during their program Man Made Marvels. In that episode, they featured the latest infrastructure projects in Beijing that the Chinese government was coming up with as they prepare for 08.08.08.

I was watching the part about the new Beijing International Airport, and I was impressed by the sheer size and concept of the project. After that, they featured the upcoming train system that's supposed to shuttle the Olympic crowds to and from the airport area (I think). Now, the platform where the train ride stops features this gigantic overhang that was designed by a famous architect whose name eludes me at this moment.

When I saw that bit, all I could say was...

"Shit. I hate my professors."

The narrator of the program kept going on and on about how the overhang was being applauded as "awe-inspiring" and "glorious", and as he did so, I just kept getting more and more frustated.

The reason for this bitterness is the fact that back in college, I designed an seaport with almost the exact same thing; a huge overhang in almost the same shape, but with a more proportionate size to the area of the theoretical port that we were given to work with. This was in Design class.

My professor failed my plate at that time, saying that the design was impossible and impractical, and I was even accused of watching too much Lord of the Rings.

... Grrr.

And now that I've brought that up, let me also express my utmost frustration at the fact that the same professor also failed another plate that I made for an upper-class residential unit meant for a bachelor, saying that it wasted too much space, and that there was no actual division between areas and rooms.

HELLO??? Ever heard of Mies Van Der Rohe?? Minimalism?? ZONING??? And that a residential layout doesn't have to be made with freakin' BOXES??? If DOORS define space for you, then I hope you choke on pencil lead.

Sigh. I've long forgotten the name of the said professor, and I'm kicking myself a few years too late over the fact that I should have complained and stood my ground back then.

Moral of the story #1: Don't listen to old, withered professors who stubbornly insist on keeping their minds closed.

Moral of the story #2: If enrolling in a Design class of any kind... make sure you don't get a professor like the one described in #1. If you do, promptly file for a class transfer.

Moral of the story #3: Heard that story about the 2-year-old boy who saved his whole family from burning to a crisp? That boy told his dad that the bedroom was on fire, but the dad thought the little boy was playing another game. It wasn't until the boy screamed at him and kicked him in the shin did he decide to get up and actually check. Lo and behold, the room was on fire and they almost got wiped out. So... LISTEN TO THE YOUNG ONES, TOO!!

Moral of the story #4: Be prepared to scream at people and kick them in the shin if necessary, if you truly believe that they should listen to you.

Sigh. T_T

/rambling.
ksolaris: (Default)
Hehe... I just came back from a quick trip from Waltermart Makati to do a couple of things that I've been meaning to do for a while. I was home, I was alone, and I was bored, and Waltermart is one jeepney ride and ten minutes away, so I figured, what the heck. So, I've gone ahead and:

- bought myself new swimwear, because I've gained weight since I bought my one and only swimsuit several years ago.

- went to a salon for a foot spa treatment, because there's this pair of flat shoes that I bought last month that, though cute, walking around in it has made the soles of my feet tough in a matter of a few weeks.

- had my eyebrows tamed at the same salon, because my eyebrows have wills of their own and is the type that only mad scientists would envy.

Of course, I do still feel a little guilty and a little silly about it, but I did enjoy myself and I'm comforted by the fact that I still managed to spend within my means.

Anyway, the foot spa treatment was actually my main objective for today. I was watching TV this morning and caught a glimpse at the soles of my feet, and I just noticed that the soles have gotten hard and were actually peeling. Ugh. So I happily handed over two hundred pesos to the ladies at the salon I went to, and had my soles scraped until they were tender again.

It was nice to get rid of the hard layer of skin, but the experience was also slight torture for me since I have very ticklish feet. It's so bad that sometimes Lem can't even give me a footrub because I keep jerking away and I have to ask him to stop before I end up kicking him in the face by accident. So, as I sat there in the salon chair, I had to put in a lot of effort to keep myself from giggling like a maniac as the lady started scrubbing and scraping my soles. I felt like Toph in that Avatar episode where she and Katara went to a spa and she was given a similar treatment.

As for the eyebrow fix... well it cost sixty pesos, so I figured I'd go ahead before I chickened out again. XD I'm pretty happy with the result though, and I'm just thankful that I no longer have to worry about some men I know who actually have nicer eyebrows than I do (the shame!).

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

Speaking of retail therapy, Lem and I finally gave in last week and bought ourselves yet another cable box. Yep, since December 2007, Lem and I have been deprived of television since the cable box has been set to mute, and the remote control was somehow broken along the way. And since the only way that we could un-mute it was via the remote control as the volume controls on the cable box worked independently from the controls on the TV set itself... well... we've been unable to find a replacement cable box remote, so we gave up and bought a new cable box set.

When we installed the new one, we found that the remote for the new one also works for the old set, so we now have a spare cable box, just in case.

Anyone want to buy it for 500 pesos? XD

Anyway, now that we can watch TV again, we were pleasantly surprised to find that the History Channel has been added to our channels. It's so full of mame chishiki, which we are complete suckers for, that we can't stop watching.

Damn you, History Channel. Why do you have to be so damned interesting..? T_T
ksolaris: (Default)
FINALLY. I've finally managed to get my hands on a decent PC and actually have enough time to sit down and type away. Anyway, there's been a LOT of things that I've been wanting to post about, but a sudden lack of resources have prevented me from doing that.

The last half of December 2007, and the first week of January 2008 has been particularly eventful, and I'm actually quite glad about it all, even though some of those events weren't exactly pleasant. Anyway, I'll try my best to make this short and sweet:

- Currently reading:
* Katekyo Hitman Reborn (dammit!! The next chapter is taking so long!!)
* Hatsukoi Limited (NEXT CHAPTER PLEASE!!!)
* Genshiken

- Currently watching:
* Girls Bravo (Just finished it this afternoon. Ecchi comedies, FTW!)
* Howl's Moving Castle (Just managed to watch it last week, for shame!)
* Busou Renkin (Halfway done. Disc c/o Jyli)
* History's Greatest Disciple Kenichi (10 episodes and counting)

Hehe... I've been pretty much out of the loop when it comes to anime and manga, that I'm just glad that I've been having more chances to enjoy them recently. I still have a lot of catching up to do!

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

Because of a recent incident, I still haven't been able to edit and upload some of the pictures that I've taken during the UST 2007 Paskuhan, and nor have I been able to work on all the photos from our barkada's Christmas party last December 22-23. I've really been wanting to put those pictures up since I know that my high school friends would also like to see those photos online.

But then again, I guess I should just be thankful that I still have the photos to work with at all. ^_^;; Maaa... I guess just one regret that I have is that I wasn't able to back up some of the files that we had on the laptop, including some old photos from my old phone which I haven't been able to store anywhere else. Sigh.

Oh well, I guess I'll have to wait until I manage to go to Ian's house in Fairview to do all that since there doesn't seem to be a single, reasonably-priced net cafe in the city which has Adobe Photoshop installed on their PCs... I guess the photo updates will have to wait.

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

More on updates, as a continuation from the previous list:

- Christmas was spent at work. Then you guys know what happened next. XD

- New Year's Eve was spent at work... and then after work, Ian picked me up and we headed for TriNoMa so that I can treat my parents to lunch.

- Watch out world, I learned how to make sansrival, and I've been making and giving away trays of it...

- January 2: jylichan dropped by our apartment to feed us FRIED SNICKERS BARS!! ^__________^ Photos of glorious food item to follow.

- Been using the office gym, FINALLY, and so far I've been able to keep it up. An hour and a half four times a week should be okay for starters, right? Considering that the last time I actually did any serious workout was back in 2001 (?) when I played soccer... I've also been changing my eating habits, so I hope I'll be able to maintain this momentum for the whole year. I figured it's best to start out slow and steady instead of burning myself out immediately.

- January 6: went to The Spa in Acropolis with Rosa, Mitchiko, and Tin. Mitch and Tin treated me for the spa and for dinner with a whole bunch of Hill People at Serye Eastwood afterwards, since I'm currently broke. ^_____^ I still can't stop saying THANK YOU!! The trip to the spa was so goooooooooood. ~_______~ Tin also gave me a small box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates which is now carefully stashed away in our fridge (Ian knows better than to breach my supply of chocolates though...). Photos taken at the dinner to follow.

- January 8: Met up with Rosa at the new JFMO library in Pacific Star. That library is so gorgeous now!! The last time that I was there, they were still at the 12th floor, but the new one... bean bags in one corner, high windows, ipods loaded with Japanese songs, a mezzanine... WOW!

- When I met Rosa, she brought along miss h_matsumoto with her, so I finally got to meet her in person. ^_^

- Ian's mom and sisters gave me a cute corduroy bag which I now use, and Rosa gave me a 2008 Starbucks planner (YAY!!!!!)

.....

... Ehe... everything seems incoherent back there. Sorry. I can't seem to think straight right now, especially when there's A LOUDMOUTH WOMAN WHO JUST LEARNED TO USE SKYPE SITTING RIGHT BEHIND ME, SHOUTING AT THE TOP OF HER LUNGS TO SOME KOREAN DUDE ON THE OTHER END OF THE LINE WHO CAN'T UNDERSTAND A WORD SHE'S SAYING.

I miss having my own desktop PC.

I better close here for now before I stuff my mouse down her nose... ^_^##

Eitherway, may 2008 be good for everyone.
ksolaris: (Default)
Hehe... yes, my little trip to the salon turned into a full-blown pilgrimage which spanned three cities and about 10 full hours or so. ^_^;;

I was originally supposed to go to Greenbelt and have my hair fixed at Piandre, until I managed to get one of my gay friends to accompany me to another salon in Robinson's Malate which he recommends.

So that's two cities: Makati and Manila.

Upon getting to the now-gorgeous Faura wing of Robinson's Malate, and after a meal at Chaikofi, we headed for Bench Fix. Unfortunately, Fix, as well as all the other salons in the mall, all refused to give me the curls that I so desperately wanted because of the glaring fact that my hair was rebonded.

Apparently, rebonded hair can never be permed as the chamicals needed for the job simply can't "stick" onto the hair for it to be actually effective. Had I insisted, they COULD have gone on with the operation, only for me to lose all that work the moment I showered. So, not only will the chemicals go down the drain, but my money along with it. They recommended that I either have my hair rebonded again (hence turning it into a permanent, vicious cycle), or I can wait for another year or so for more natural, untreated hair to grow out, all the while keeping my head a big, confused mess.

I swear, at that point, I felt like crying.

Thankfully, my friend James suggested that we try another mall in Manila to try to get one of those rotating hair brushes. He suggested that I can just get my hair rebonded again, and then just curl it as necessary.

It took two malls and a couple of hours for us to concede to the fact that the damn brush was not being sold anywhere, just when I needed it. Not completely giving up though, he showed me how to use benders and those curlers with the elastic bands on them in order to get curls into my hair if I wanted it. I bought a set and I'm waiting for a chance to try what I learned.

Anyway, as I was about to submit myself for another rebonding session at one of the mall salons, I backed out completely when I was informed of how much they will be charging me for rebonding EVEN IF I CROPPED MY HAIR REALLY SHORT. Now, I know that I said that I was willing to pay for some expert to perform a miracle on my hair, but I'm not THAT gullible.

Desperate, I called up Ian who was then in Fairview and asked if the original hair dresser who rebonded my hair back in May is still available. He made a quick check with his mom, and hallelujah, I got the go signal, and I immediately dashed for their little shop in Fairview, Quezon City.

I started my salon search at 9:30 am that day, got to Fairview by about 4pm, and had to stay in the salon chair until about 9pm.

Oh yeah. All for the sake of vanity, I tell you.

Peek-a-boo )

All in all, despite that whirlwind of a day, I got a new haircut, and I got rid of the problem areas which was my main goal anyway. It's still a shame that I couldn't get the exact style that I originally wanted, but I guess beggars can't be choosers, ne? ^_^;;

PS.
I got to pass by Ian's house in Fairview again, after a LOOOONG time, and have I mentioned that they've been adding a second floor to the house? The place is HUGE!!! And I absolutely love the fact that the rooms on the second floor all have access to this wide, common veranda which is big enough to accomodate a small coffee table, seats, and much more, now that I think about it.

Oh, and their local cat population has also now grown to four, with more on the way. XD
ksolaris: (tadakichi)
Hehehe!! Yep, tomorrow is IT. Thanks to everyone who pitched their ideas! I had a lot of help from a lot of people, both on LJ and off, with finally making up my mind on what to do with my unruly locks.

Shet, kinakabahan pa din ako. Pero excited din! XD XD

Well, as some people I know like to say:

DO YOU SURE??????
YEPOY, I'M SURE! THIS IS REALLY IS IT!!

Wish me luck. :p
ksolaris: (Default)
For the first time in my life, it has actually occurred to me, without any outside influence whatsoever, that I need to get my hair fixed at a salon. Yes, I'm actually telling MYSELF, that I need to go to a SALON and get pretty-fied.

Oh boy. O_O;;;;

Anyway, here's the thing: As you all know, I have naturally curly hair, and last May, thanks to Ian's mom, I had my hair rebonded and it then turned into this shiny, silky, super-straight mass that I love. Unfortunately... well... hair grows back. Had there been a way for me to tell my hair "STOP RIGHT THERE!", I would have done it.

Now, the strands from my forehead down to the area just above my ear is curly/wavy, and then SHLICK! it suddenly goes oh-so-straight after that point, and even I have to admit that it's really starting to look awkward. So, I decided that before the year ends, I want to get my hair fixed because I want to greet the new year looking as utterly fabulous as I can possibly survive.

As for what I want right now, I want to go by Lem's suggestion and crop my hair short, and I'm actually willing to even go for a boy-cut or a bob at this point because I feel particularly rebellious right now (more on that on another, more emo-touchy entry), and I also simply want to try something that I've never tried before, EVER.

Besides chopping my hair off, I'm also considering getting it permed (digital or otherwise) and even colored, should my wallet allow it. I'm currently trying to avoid the silky-straight look so that if my hair grows back again, I don't have to worry about it much. Hehe...

Anyway, flist, I need your help with trying to pick a hairstyle. I found some pictures off the internet that I can print out later and bring to the salon as reference once I've decided. But I have no idea what looks good on me! T_T

So far, here's what I've got:
20 choices under the cut )

There. So please, please do let me know what you think! I really need help with picking something out. ^___^

Also, any suggestions on which salons I should go to? I'm suddenly feeling this hankering NEED for a trusted stylist...

I'm willing to spend more than I would normally allow, just this once, because I really want to look good and be happy with the results. Plus, remember, this is a FIRST for me, so I want to make it as pleasantly memorable as I possibly can, even if my wallet will end up crying for a while. If it takes Franck Provost's students to tame my hair, then I will gladly save up for the next two years so that I can go to them again.
ksolaris: (Default)
1.) Finally, finally, FINALLY bought a new DVD player to replace the one that we've been using for the past 4 or 5 years. The old player has seen a lot of happy times as Lem and I, and our friends sat in front of it, basking in the glory that is Monty Python, and whatever B-movie we could get our hands on. But alas, it's time to move on (plus we broke the remote control). So, we finally purchased a new, shiny, region-free DVD player that can actually play DivX, wma, avi, mp4 etc, etc. It even has a USB port so that you can play your movies straight from your thumb drive. It's great! No more huddling in front of the tiny laptop screen! (right, Jyli? XD)

2.) So, because of the said sniny, CHEAP, new DVD player, Ian's been downloading stuff for me to watch. Enough to probably last me a month. So far, I've finally seen the recent episodes of Heroes (2nd season), and Ian has downloaded 3 seasons' worth of Avatar: the Last Air Bender. He's also gotten us some movies, all in crystal-clear divX format, with 8 movies to a disc. Fun!

3.) Also because of the new DVD player, I've finally managed to finish watching the anime version of Devil May Cry. Dante is just so shmexy, no matter what version he's in (as long as some lousy dubber doesn't pull that "LI~~~IIIIIIIGHT!!!" shenanigan again, that is).... (boy, that was hard to watch again... O_O). It also amused me for hours at how the last episode was entitled "Stylish!", haha! It made me want to bring out our copy of DMC1 again. Which reminds me, I don't know if you guys noticed it, but in the opening sequence, do we actually see snippets of Phantom...? You know? Big, hairy tarantula made of magma?

4.) Bad news of the week: Ian's key snapped inside the door lock and he had to break the door. So yeah, our door is now officially dead. It's there, but it's dead. We need to replace our apartment door soon (within a week, I hope?) after we coordinate with our landlady. Sigh. We were canvassing for doors an hour ago, and it seems that we can get a new one for Php1500... + the door locks, knobs, peephole, etc.... + payment for the labor, assuming we can find a competent carpenter right away if we did purchase the door. :/

5.) Dumb thing disguised as work for this week: I made a WikiPedia entry on... TADAH!! Monokuro Boo.

Don't ask. Don't offend the piggy.

6.) Annoying news of the other day: the Pasay Road/Landmark jeepney terminal was moved. ARRRRRGHHHH!!! I have no idea what the hell Glorietta management was smoking when they figured out that it might be a good idea to move the jeepney terminal, which has been there for years, to the stuffy, damp, THIRD FLOOR carpark of Park Square 1, given that the only elevator in that area fits only about 8 people at a time. Sheesh.

7.) I'm starting to get addicted to The Face Shop. I bought facial foam cleanser, more masks and cotton pads on my last trip. I didn't notice that they slipped this small plastic pack inside my shopping bag, and it was only when I got home did I notice this thin, amber-looking sliver of something in there. I prodded it and bent it and noticed that it was of a rubbery consistency. Not knowing what else to do (and possibly exhausted and brain dead from all the walking that I had to do to get to the damned jeepney terminal), I did the next best thing to just simply running water over it to see if it will foam up.

Kinagat ko.

Ayun. Sabon nga.

X_x
ksolaris: (Default)
In an unusual bout of extravagance, I've been having this compulsion to just go out and buy THINGS for myself for the past week or so. I've often been told that I shop like a guy, since I have this tendency to figure out what I need before going to a store, get in there, grab it, maybe try it on just to be sure that I've got the correct one, pay for it and leave. This week though, I've bought more stuff than I would normally allow myself to, considering that a) I don't exactly have a six-figure salary, and b) I'm a natural cheapskate AND have Ilocano roots.

It feels great, though, even if I go on a guilt-trip afterwards, and the shoe shopping makes me feel all girly-like.

So far, I've bought two pairs of shoes in a single week. They were on sale, and I happen to be in dire need of flat shoes that aren't sneakers... so that I can start wearing those dresses and skirts that I've bought in the past couple of months... so that I'd stop saying that I don't have enough clothes because I only wear shirts and pants, both of which tend to run out pretty fast.

Again, this is a rare occurrence, since I normally just buy footwear when the one that I've been using almost every single day is just about ready to fall apart.

That reminds me. Some time ago, I saw a fridge magnet that said, "If the shoe fits, buy it in every color". I now see the wisdom in that.

Yesterday, I also bought a couple of t-shirts, one being a Fight Club parody, and the other one with a design that goes, "Skywalker & Son, Handmade Lightsabres, Since 1977" simply because I couldn't resist that subtle (?) joke. It's another one of those PortSide shirts, and I really would say that I loved the brand if it weren't for the fact that I'm aware that their designs are plagiarized. :/

Then, the day before that, I finally managed to pay a visit to The Face Shop. Sad as it is to admit, but I was never even aware of the brand until last October 16, when I met up with Noreen, Enrico and Dia (people from my previous job) for a trip to our favorite hotpot restaurant. After eating, we headed for Mall of Asia because Noreen mentioned that she needed to pick up something for her mom at The Face Shop.

We found the place that she was looking for, and Dia and I each bought a single face mask for the heck of it (and because the store clerk was giving us the "you better buy something or get out" look). I tried on the face mask and I liked it so much (especially after it's been in the fridge overnight) that I researched on the locations of the other branches, only to discover that there was a branch in Glorietta all along, right beside McDonald's and Gift Gate, BOTH OF WHICH I GO TO ALL THE TIME. I also learned that it's been there for a good number of years now, and I'm surprised at how I somehow managed to dismiss its very presence and/or existence all this time.

So I went in, picked out several variations of the face masks, and also got myself this oil-control facial toner (which seems to be working quite fabulously, by the way). The toner cost Php375, which has got to be the most I have ever spent on a product like that. Ever (I'm poor and a cheapskate, remember?).

I don't know why, but lately, I am suddenly seeing the good in things like this, and I've been considering having my hair permed and colored and cellophaned, having my eyebrows plucked into submission (it's just all over the place), and finally going to the dentist to have my teeth cleaned (since it's covered by our HMO anyway).

Lem has been theorizing that maybe it's because I'm such a late bloomer, kikay-wise, that the moment that I finally discover all these things, everything suddenly gets fast-forwarded.

I'm half-praying that this would stop soon since we still have the rent and bills to consider, but I'm also loathe to admit that I'm actually enjoying all this. Now, part of me wants to render overtime every single day at work, so that I could divert the fruit of those to more shopping.

What's funny, though, is that I still don't seem to be particularly attracted to clothes sold in department stores. ^_^;;; I guess I'm fated to have a wardrobe full of ukay-ukay finds, but I don't mind it at all anyway, so all is still good, I suppose.
ksolaris: (Default)
Lem had his long-overdue haircut this morning, but apparently, I ended up having one, too. ^_^;;

As it goes, my long, scrawny and badly-damaged curly hair has been transformed into a shoulder-length, unbelievably-straight-and-shiny, balik-ayos hairdo, all thanks to Lem's mom. I'm currently still trying to get used to it, as my head now feels like it wants to float off. It's so light, without that whole bunch of hair! @_@;;;;

I'm still trying to figure out how this whole straight-hair-no-need-to-use-a-scrunchie culture is supposed to work, but Lem says that I'll be okay in about a week... ^_^;;
ksolaris: (dark zelda)
Sigh. I really should have started this earlier. In any case, I have a cousin's wedding to attend by the second week of February, and once again, I find myself panicking at the need to slim down in time for the occassion. Let's just say that I got something left to prove, AND there are some questions that I would REALLY rather nor hear from a good number of my relatives...

In any case, I've stooped so low as to start browsing the local Cosmo forums, and I'm even starting to consider taking them diet pills to help in the process.

Sigh... anyway, there are several end results to this endeavor:

- fitting into a lot of my old clothes again (no, I can't afford a new wardrobe, so this will have to be the way to do it)

- looking good at the wedding where rarely-seen K will make an appearance to the clan

- losing weight will also hopefully reduce the stress on my knees which aren't working properly to begin with.

So, as many people have been telling me, things I would need to do would include:

- cutting back on rice
- no softdrinks
- no choco fudge/ ice cream sundaes, etc
- no more pigging out
- warm drinks after a meal instead of cold ones
- less candy
- more exercise (no, walking home everyday doesn't count)
- less oily/fried/fatty viands
- less pasta

... Looking at this list, I think I'll be either delirious or dead by the time the wedding comes around.

Screw this.

...


....


..........


Oh, fine, fine. Discipline, it is.

But the reception buffet had better be good.
ksolaris: (Default)
Hee hee! I'm on a roll! For the past three days, we've just been bumping into bargains all over the place, and I'm happy with it! ^__^

Original copy of Guild Wars: 400 pesos! ($8?)
For some reason, there was a guy inside the McDonald's branch at the PeopleSupport building last Thursday who was sitting in a corner beside the window and behind the security guard. He was surrounded by Guild Wars banners, shirts, stickers and posters, and on a table he had original PC games on display. All other titles he had (all of which are a unfamiliar to me, except maybe LOTR: War of the Ring and Age of Empires 2? 3?) were selling for only 199 pesos, while Guild Wars was for 400 pesos. We couldn't resist so we grabbed a copy. We got home and tested it out and the product key works, the CD works and the box comes complete with manuals, booklets, etc.

Hehe... I guess this is all okay with us since it will take a while for us to complete all the quests in the core pack anyway. Hopefully the expansions, Factions and Nightfall, would also be on sale around this time next year. XD

Ukay-ukay find #1: Brand new pair of Jeans from Mexx - 150 pesos ($3?)
It was raining on the way from work and I didn't have an umbrella, so I decided to pass some time at the ukay-ukay store for a while. I was planning to glance over the bags and knick-knacks, but there, on a rack right beside the entrance was a pair of jeans WITH TAGS. I took a look and saw that it still carried its price tag which reads "$295" and that it's from some company called MEXX. Heck, Hong Kong, Singapore, US dollars, I dunno, but what I do know is that when I tried it on, IT FIT PERFECTLY! As in PERFECTLY!!

Ukay-ukay find #2: Long-sleeved blouse from Marks & Spencer - 100 pesos ($2?)
Original M&S blouse which I love. Fits great, hides my I-need-to-do-sit-ups-but-I'm-too-lazy tummy and most importantly, it's wash-and-wear. XD

Ukay-ukay find #3: Cute printed long-sleeved blouse - 100 pesos ($2?)
Black and white prints, something I can wear to the office, hides problem tummy, and wash-and-wear!

Ukay-ukay find #4: Wine-colored, embroidered, zip-up vest - 100 pesos ($2?)
Made of nice, thick material. Quilted, has embroideries without looking too girly. Zips up and looks great when accessorized with a big set of headphones hanging from your neck and a backpack on one shoulder. People suddenly assume that you're an artistic genius and that your backpack is probably filled with pencils, ink, half-filled sketchbooks and books from authors they'd be ashamed to not know, instead of photos of your dog, a coffee mug and a bag of chips (tried and tested in RCBC Plaza!! Don't ask. Haha!)... XD Wash and wear.

Haha! I know. I suck at this. I'd never make it in a fashion magazine. XD

Oh and I almost forgot. A nice, big book on Celtic mythology for another 100 bucks.

Whee!! It did take a bit of haggling, ofcourse, but it was worth it.

Ian always did say that I had stuff-itis. I wanted to get him something from the ukay-ukay too, but it occured to me that he needs to be there so he can fit the clothes. It wouldn't be good to get something cool-looking only to find later that neither of us can use it.

** For foreigners who are unfamiliar with the concept of ukay-ukay, you can pretty much get an idea on what it is and how it works via these other Googled-up blogs:

http://www.shoppingera.net/2006/02/05/cubao-ukay-ukay-heaven/
http://news.inq7.net/opinion/index.php?index=2&story_id=51695&col=127
http://www.yourinternetlifestyle.com/innerpages/article.asp?mm=beautyfashion&id=71

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

PS. I like LJ's Halloween color scheme. XD

PPS. Had to edit the image for my new layout as I realized the disparity between the colors that this laptop shows to me, and the colors that monitors everywhere else show. Apparently, the color was much brighter and redder than I had hoped, though while I was making it, it looked like a good shade of maroon-brown to me. I adjusted the color, though I think I may be in for ANOTHER surprise tomorrow when I view my blog on the office computer... ^_^;;; Sigh.

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