An ode to all single moms — because I am proudly raised (is being raised) by one

I know, I know. This is a super-duper delayed mothers’ (and advanced fathers’) day post. I was supposed to post one on May 10 but was too busy preparing for my Catanduanes trip (which was awesome – as expected – and which I have to write about really, really soon) and fixing all other hullabaloos in my life that I promptly forgot about it. Which is super bad, I know, because my own mom will never be too busy for (let alone forget) me. So here I am.

During our grand family reunion last Sunday (which was actually the main reason I went to Catanduanes), one of my aunts introduced herself teary-eyed with the following words: “I am a single mom…” She was a mix of proud (her son, believe me, is someone to be really proud of) and ashamed. But everybody clapped for her and I can hear people saying, “That’s okay. You’re okay.”

I wanted to approach her and tell her the exact same things I am gonna say below. But I didn’t. I knew I should have. I knew she needed to hear these. I know ALL single moms need to hear this.

So here goes:

There’s no shame in being a single mom. I have – technically – been raised by three very strong, very loving, very caring, very beautiful single mothers: 1) my aunt, who was still unmarried and had no children of her own when my mom left for Japan and she was left with a very malandi, very sutil girl to look after; 2) my other aunt, who was by then also a single mom to a young, hardheaded boy; and 3) my own mom. And I’d like to think I grew up to be one fine, strong, able lady. And though my genes may have played a part in it, I know it is more a testament to the wonderful job my two aunts and mom have done.


I was not the easiest kid to look after. Most kids aren’t. Kids are bound to be naughty, noisy, rowdy, and stubborn. Even the most behaved ones have crazy sleep patterns. As an aunt and as a godmother, I often find myself only able to look after the little ones for only a few hours at a time. My friends, who are happily married and have partners to help look after the kids, still have their “horror” stories about being parents. So if it’s hard for those with partners in their lives, what more for the single moms? So if you are one? No, don’t put that head down in shame or shed a tear because you feel like a “failure”. You have been, are, and will be doing a great job at raising that kid of yours. Then that kid will someday look back and know how much effort you put into his/her life. And believe me, s/he will appreciate it. Because I sure did.

So to my Auntie Lyn, Auntie Medy, and Mommy, the three amazing ladies who shaped me into the person I am today, and to my Tia Pollen, who inspired this post, and to all awesome (responsible) single mothers out there: CHEERS! The world is a better place because you exist. I love you. Each and every one of you.

Happy belated mothers’ day. heart

Feeling: sassy super duper happy
All ears to: 7 Things Miley Cyrus (for real)
Curled up in bed with: Paper Towns John Green

30 Reasons Why 30 Is My Best Year (So Far)

(In no particular order.)

1) Truly understanding why some things just never really worked out with some people.
2) A fun [24]7 Revolve performance.
3) November 30 (and no, not just because it was 13th month pay lol).
4) Anne making it to Qatar.
5) A release, right when I needed it most.
6) My US Visa approval (and the funny story that came with it).
7) JL and the way he made me smile.
8) Close-Up Forever Summer featuring ALESSO!!!
9) Auto-pilot modes during my drunkest moments.
10) My Urbanears Zinken.
11) Discovering the joys of coffee.
12) LMVP.
13) My Care TDT Team.
14) The best friends one can ever have, my happy bubble.
15) Discovering Rainbow Rowell.
16) “Got 2 Believe” DVDs for endless, mindless fun.
17) Getting to be editor-in-chief for the company magazine (even for just one issue).
18) High-lows.
19) Numerous free food, gifts, and little trinkets.
20) Getting sent to North Carolina for the new curriculum T3.
21) My Staybridge Ohana.
21) Realizing that I love New York but I love Chicago more and equating this realization to something more.
22) A fun Cebu trip where I reconnected with old friends.
23) The best purchase ever: my Bose Soundlink III.
24) Finding out my strengths.
25) Faith.
26) Happiness, love, and John Lennon.
27) Flattering words from former trainees who said they will never forget me.
28) Completing the #100happydays challenge.
29) H and those endless conversations that made me realize tons and tons of things. One of which is that good men still exist. ❤️ And the most important is that I should be patient to get what I truly deserve. ❤️
30) Surviving and making it to my 31st year.

Hey 31st, let’s make the year more awesome than the previous one, kk? 😊

Vanity Kit: My newest brush set is love! ♥

When I first got into make-up love, I never really thought I needed to invest on good make-up brushes. My hand and my cheapie brushes, I would always say, will suffice. Then I got to trying out Bianca’s quality brushes and I realized that they do make a difference. Well, first off, they go smooth on your face. Next, they do make face point look oh-so-much prettier (and believe it or not, last so much longer).

So I got my own set. Since I wasn’t a make-up artist and since I never thought I’d be too into make-up as I am now, I wanted to keep things simple. I got the Charm Holiday Set for my first. I loved it. But I was new to the make-up world back then and was quite stupid. I ruined those pretty, pretty brushes.

Bianca was at that time also looking at upgrading her brush set. She sold me her pre-loved Charm Travel Pro for a very reasonable price. And like I already said in a previous post, I lost some of those brushes. I bought the then newly-released Charm Travel Pro v3. I vowed it was going to be my lucky set in that I will take good care of the set.

But I’m stupid. And careless. I lost most of my brushes again. What’s worse is I lost the essential ones — powder, blush, concealer brushes. I was supposed to just get individual brushes but I saw these:


This is Sophie’s Charm Essentials Pretty in Pink Vegan 14-pc Makeup Brush Set. All the pink handles and bag just had my name stamped all over them. Naturally, I had to get my hands on these.

And I did. I also threw in the a set of the makeup brush guards (because, I SWEAR, I’ll be more careful with my brushes now) and the Charm Luxe flat top brush (which I’ve been wanting to purchase for the longest time) .I splurged because, by the way, Multiply is having a 20% off on orders — so go grab some, dearies.

Anyhoo, two weeks ago, this came in my doorstep:

Photo 2-5-13, 11 35 40 AM

I was so excited to open it up. And I love that the Beauty and Minerals team made efforts to wrap my order in individual colored paper. It made me feel like I was opening a very pretty gift. And really, I was.

Photo 2-5-13, 11 37 51 AM

The first thing I did was dig into the brushes themselves and wipe them up and down my cheeks. They feel soooo soft! So soft that I wanted to use them the same day I got them. But I was a good girl and washed them first. You have no idea how happy I was to finally be able to use them. The flat top brush was worth every penny. And so were the powder, blush, and concealer brushes.

I haven’t really had the chance to try all 14 brushes but I know now that I am in love with set. I am not going to promise not to lose any of these lovelies because that does not seem to work but I will promise to love them and take care of them. I have washed these babies twice and I have had about one or two fallouts. These babies are toughies, at least tougher than the previous Charm sets I’ve owned. This is also the first set I’ve owned with regular-sized handles and I’m loving it!

More pictures of my pretty January pink purchase:

Charm Makeup Brush Guard Envelope (1)

Charm Makeup Brush Guard Envelope (2)

The Charm Makeup Brush Guard

Charm Flat Top Brush (1) Charm Flat Top Brush (2) Charm Flat Top Brush (3) Charm Flat Top Brush (4) Charm Flat Top Brush (5)

Charm Flat Top Brush

Pretty in Pink Vegan Brush Set (The Box) Pretty in Pink Vegan Brush Set (The Box and the Pink Pocuh) Pretty in Pink Vegan Brush Set (the brushes with the flat top brush)

Are you also on the lookout for new brushes? Try these Charm babies. I promise you won’t regret it. Or if you’re not into sets, you can also get these brushes individually on the Beauty and Minerals website.

Feeling: super happy
All ears to: The Vampire Diaries playing in the background
Curled up in bed with: Life of Pi Yann Martel

Les Miserables: A Short Review

lesmis2012So I finally watched Les Miserables last weekend. I was supposed to watch it on its opening weekend but I had one family event then another then work then school. In short, I was too busy to pause reality for a dose of escapism.

So, what’s my verdict?

Love it! I cried shamelessly. I tried my bestest not to sing-along but still ended up humming. It is still, after all, the classic Les Miserables story that I’ve known and loved. And the actors were all brilliant (Anne Hathaway was just love, love, love)! Well, save for maybe Russell Crowe. Not that his acting was bad; his singing was. I can’t actually say if he did a great job as Javert because his singing distracted me too much.

lesmis1998Speaking of the singing, though I loved hearing the classic musical songs, there were times when the singing just didn’t work out on screen and things seemed too jarred for me. It is for this reason that I say the 1998 Les Miserables may still be a better movie than this one. (But that may just be me.)

I am crossing my fingers that they bring the musical here in the Philippines. And you can bet your asses, I’ll be there watching – also crying shamelessly and trying to not sing along but still ending up humming the songs.

Feeling: sleepy
All ears to: Songs from Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, Mamma Mia!, Phantom of the Opera, Wicked, and Altar Boyz
Curled up in bed with: Life of Pi Yann Martel

Birthday Wish List 2013

I have never really made a birthday wish list before. Mostly because I was certain no one’s going to give me most of what will be on my list. But this year, though I know I’m still likely to get none of what I wish for, I thought it would be just fun to make one anyway.

And so here goes my birthday wish list this 2013 (puwede na din mag-extend to Christmas, tee-hee):

The Face Shop’s Power Perfection BB Cream
My favorite BB cream! I’ve tried a lot of BB cream and nothing can compare to this.

Maybelline’s Cat Eyes Mascara or Colossal Cat Eyes Mascara
I love how Cat Eyes make my lashes oh-so-pretty. I’ve heard Colossal Cat Eyes is better as it also adds volume. I wouldn’t mind getting either of these.

Urban Decay’s Vice Palette
I just absolutely love Urban Decay eyeshadow palettes! I’ve only really owned the Naked 1 palette and I am in love!

Make-up Train Case by Legally Vain
In case the above three do not make it clear, I love make-up. And I want a pretty, pretty case where I can store my pretty, pretty face colors.

Nail Polishes by OPI, China Glaze, or Orly
…for my nail art collection!

The UP Havaianas
Yes, yes, I know. It’s not the prettiest thing in the world. But I dunno, I still want one! T_T (I’m a size 8, by the way. LOL.)

Just some books on my wish list are: A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin, The Sins of the Father by Jeffrey Archer, Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coehlo, Girl with Dragon Tattoo series, anything Chuck Palahniuk, and anything Christopher Moore.

Anything Hello Kitty

Momsie 14″Handbag by La Bolsa
I love big bags!!! And Michelle’s bags are love! Check her out on FB, La Bolsa by michelle.

I want one. I need one!

iPhone 5
A girl can dream, can’t she? 😜

And that’s it! But even if I don’t get any of these, I will be perfectly happy just to have a happy birthday. ^___^

Anyhow, happy Monday everyone!

Feeling: rested
All ears to: The Walking Dead 3 (watching it while drafting this)
Curled up in bed with: How To Save Your Own Life by Erica Jong

Journey to 29, Day 6 Part 1 (a.k.a. Day 3): Pole loving!!!

20121008-144328.jpg Since I wasn’t able to do something for Day 3 of my journey to 29, Saturday is reserved for doing two fun and crazy things. This is the first of them.

I started learning how to pole dance a year and a half ago to get over a broken heart. I enjoyed it so much, I stayed in classes. That is until I enrolled again in the University and had to juggle work, study, and internship. I lost time for anything related to fitness (bad, I know). I had to stop going to pole classes in July or August of last year.

I promised myself that soon as I have time, I’ll be going back on the pole (on the whole fitness thing, actually). I still don’t have much time these days, with our account on ramp mode and school still unfinished but I figured out one thing: if you really like doing something, no matter how busy you get, you will find time to do it. So I said to myself, “What the heck. I am going back on the pole!”

And last Saturday, I did.

This is me, on my way to my first pole class in a long time.

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Polecats Manila’s new home. The Wellness Alliance Center at Strata 100.

And this their new pretty, pretty studio!

My 8-class pole card!

I took the 1pm Beginners1 class. When I stopped last year, I’ve already graduated to Beginners2. But I’ve been out of the pole for a long time, I know I should start again with the basics. Weird enough, there was no one else in the 1pm class, just me. So I had a sulit “first” session back with the Poelcats. Since Mama Polecat Kayleen, who was handling the class, knew me from last year, she made me review as much basic pole moves as possible.

    basic fireman spin
    cross-ankle fireman spin
    extended fireman spin
    front hook spin
    back hook spin
    climb (which made me realize just how much I’ve gained weight as I had massive troubles making more than just one climb)
    thigh hold
    pole dance transitions

Everytime I did a new-old trick, I am reminded of the pain the pole brings my life. And also of why I loved it a year and a half ago. My arms and thighs were killing me at the end of the hour and I loved it! To date, my whole body is still aching, lifting my arms is a pain, and going up&down the stairs is hellish but I cannot wait for Saturday to come so I can pole dance again. Pole loving will be my regular Saturday to-do for my journey to 29. I’ll be posting new-old tricks that I will learn from week to week. Hopefully, next week, I can take pictures of myself doing the different tricks.

That’s it for Day 6, a.k.a. Day 3. Will write about Part 2 in the coming days. 🙂

Feeling: sore all over
All ears to: The One That Got Away by Katy Perry
Curled up in bed with: How To Save Your Life by Erica Jong

Journey to 29, Day 5: Feeling like a kid all over again

You know how, when you were a kid, you don’t care about which game you play because you just don’t care how you look while playing or who wins; all you care about is you’re having fun? I think I kinda lost that on my way to being an adult. I’ve been all about winning that I sometimes missed out on having fun. Day 5 of my Journey to 29 aimed to rectify that.

A bunch of friends found a box of Uno Stacko in one of the ledestals in the office. They started playing with it and I can hear them having lots of fun. I contented myself with watching them. I suck at this game and I knew I was gonna lose if I join in. But Cris, sweet hun of mine that she is, urged me to join. Hina-heart attack na daw siya sa kaba…turn ko naman daw. Sweet, right?

But I got to thinking. I have not played the game in years. And I knew I didn’t want to play not because I didn’t want to. I was just afraid I was gonna lose. But, I thought to myself, what the heck. I wanted ti have fun. If I lose, meh…that’s the way things are.

So I played. And I had lots of fun.
“Bilisan mo na, Troy!”

Green. Green. Waaah, matatalo yata ako.

Ha! I found my green block!

Change angle. I. CAN. DO. THIS!!!

I got it! I got it! I got it! Now to put this on top.

It took me a few minutes to place my green block on top of the tower. I was shaking like crazy. When I finally did, the tower came tumbling down. And I laughed so hard. I lost, admittedly. But I had so much fun playing the game and not caring about whether I looked stupid or lost.

I guess I learned something important on day 5: never be too old to enjoy the things that made you happy when you were a kid. It is through staying young that you continually stay young. After all, the youth knows best that it’s not about winning; it’s about having fun.

Randy Pausch once said, “Never lose the child like wonder. It’s just too important. It’s what drives us.” And I shall never forget these words again.

P.S. I didn’t get to do anything for Days 3 and 4 as I was extremely busy at work. But I’ll be doing two fun/crazy things in the next two Saturdays to make up for it. If you have any ideas on what else I can do for the rest of the month, feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear about your crazy ideas! ^__^

Feeling: sore but extremely happy
All ears to: use Somebody by Kings of Leon
Curled up in bed with: How To Save Your Life by Erica Jong