Thursday, June 28, 2007

wimpy, wimpy.

I am the biggest wuss there is in the whole planet. I am almost three decades old and I still haven’t overcome the fear of needles.

Last Monday, we went to the clinic and had blood drawn from me for laboratory tests. I was dreading about it the whole week before. I had to hold to hold the hubby’s hand the whole time and winced as I felt the needle pierced. It was good-sized needle, the hubby said. I didn’t dare look at it, because I know I’d die! David had a ball telling my mom how I “almost” fainted while the blood was taken. Of course, I won’t admit I was about to faint. I got really pale, I was sure. I dabbed red tint on my lips before we went to the clinic, so as not to embarrass myself when color drains from my lips.

I had squeezed the hubby’s hand too hard when the second needle pricked for another test. He said it hurt, but he was more amused by the funny look on my face. Again, on Wednesday, my ordeal was far from over for we had to go back for a couple of shots. A couple of shots on my left arm were like a couple of my toenails were pulled out. Or something like that. I told you, I am wimpy.

Even if all people say it’s just feels like an ant bite, it still seriously hurts. And I know where does this spiel lead. I know I haven’t gotten into the “real”, “major” pain in my life yet. But I’ll cross the bridge when I get there. Meantime, feeling beaten by the needle shots, I guess I just have to dust myself off and say, I survived. Until the next shot.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

happy bee day!

The other night, I labored until half-past midnight baking David’s birthday carrot cake. Or is it carrot birthday cake? Whichever. I kissed the birthday boy a happy birthday still with my pink baking bandana (no chef’s toque!) and smudges of flour on my face (plus a scraped finger). I, must take a bow, I was caught in a baking frenzy and when the hubby wished for a carrot birthday cake, I gladly (and foolhardily) took the challenge.

First of all, I’m not a carrot cake fan. (The hubby knows it). I have tasted carrot cake once when I was young, didn’t like it, and declared I won’t eat carrot cake ever. But “ever” ended last night- I ate David’s birthday cake. What do you know? Carrot cake tastes better when you baked it yourself!

Second, this was a meaningful project because for recent years, most of our birthday cakes were store-bought. If you can find it in Whole Foods bakery, why bother making it? What a hang-loose attitude. Last year, he had a raspberry-white chocolate cheesecake. Rich, luscious, chichi. Whole Foods, of course. But this year, I made him a promise- I will bake him a birthday cake.

I am not overdoing this Martha Stewart wannabe thingy, am I? But the hubby was happy. Although his round birthday cake with cream cheese frosting looked two bit compared to the flashy cheesecake, still he had the biggest smile on his face and had endless thank you’s and sweet words to me. It was worth it. Why, I couldn’t buy something like that in Whole Foods.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

small doses of fun

Mikka and Jay’s wedding

Mikka was a perky, emotional and offbeat bride. Her groom was so tall, and she was so petite, so she wore this white platform wedding shoes (she said it was her “stripper” shoe)! Their wedding was held on a cool Thursday late afternoon in a spectacular gardens called Meadowlark. Dark clouds loomed and threatened a downpour hours before the ceremony (it was held outside), but it never did. Instead, tears poured down- the bride, the groom, and the people who witnessed their union.

After cocktails, people moved into at the atrium where the reception was held. The color motif was aquamarine and chocolate. Their three-tier wedding cake had aquamarine icing and chocolate details. Their favors were fortune cookies dipped in aqua-dyed white chocolate with chocolate sprinkles. Guests dined on stuffed chicken, steak, creamed asparagus and different kinds of salads. And the best part of all? The open bar!

They danced and kissed to the song Spend My Life With You as a newlywed couple. More gaiety, dancing, tears (during toasts), merriment and drinking as the night wore on. It was a lovely wedding. Simple, but characteristically happy and heartfelt.

row your boat

The hubby got blisters on his hands from rowing the boat on Burke Lake last Sunday. We had a picnic on the park with some friends, and we just had to try the boats. The lake was fairly big-sized, and the sun was not too harsh that day, so we had fun. The hubby did all the rowing, and I was his navigator. I thought I was a little dictatorial (yikes!) – always chattering “to the right, to the right! a little to the left, a little to the left!”. Actually, I was scared the boat would sink (hehe). Can you blame me? The boat looked like an empty tin of Spanish sardines, and there was water on the bottom! (I guess people before us dumped water into the boat).

Perhaps I could try my hand at rowing the boat next time. Until I get blisters.


The joy of rediscovery! Suddenly inspired by the simple tomato salad prepared by our friends at the picnic, the hubby and I promised to eat more tomatoes. Vitamin C overload. So last Sunday night, we chopped big, juicy red tomatoes, cucumbers, and white onions, sprinkled it with salt, and added just a tiny, tiny splash of vinegar. Drool…. I slaver just thinking and writing about it now. It’s funny how the food you avoided as a child come to win you over now that you’re old(er). It’s gonna be tomato salad night tonight!

mix it

I experimented with my pasta meat sauce recently. I added sour cream to the usual blend of bottled pasta sauce, chopped onion and garlic, Italian seasoning and grated cheddar cheese. The result? The hubby liked it! So from now on, sour cream will be an essential part of all my pasta sauces.

I made a coconut custard the other night- another experiment. It was basically a leche flan recipe- I just substituted milk with coconut milk and used powdered sugar instead of my typical condensed milk. It was good (I guess). But the hubby ate it, so it must be “tasty”. He’s my trusted taste tester. If he wrinkles his nose, and say uhm… ok pud when I ask him if the stuff is okay, then it’s a NO. But he never retches or spit out any of my experiments ;) He’s that kind and considerate of my feelings. He just “forgets” it, and there it sits on the refrigerator until it’s time for it to be discarded. It’s my cue that my experiments are crappy.


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

little things make you the happiest

When things seem dull, come up with a list of things which make you happy. Here's mine:

- milk and Oreos
- Cheetos
- a nap on the sofa before fixing dinner
- a quiet time at home after a day’s work
- sour cream and tomato soup
- looking at friends’ wedding photos
- freshly washed comforters
- linen-scent carpet freshener
- fixing a cappuccino smoothie for the hubby
- unexpected email from an old friend
- seeing your high school friend’s baby sister all grown-up
- plane-spotting on a hot afternoon at Gravelly Point
- shopping for TV dinners, on sale
- finding a new dress in less than 20 minutes at the mall
- olive butter hand cream
- cream cheese on wheat bread
- finding an old favorite song from ten years ago (Kavana, Will You Wait For Me?)
- looking forward to making fried rice for dinner
- sharing a showbiz gossip with the hubby
- bright sunshine
- snagging a Victoria’s Secret Dream Angels parfum spray from a party
- getting nice looking photographs
- a stain-free white linen table cloth
- going barefoot around the house
- watching a TV show that the hubby likes
- catching snippets of Sex and the City reruns
- almost finishing a good book
- a good article in a magazine
- funny anecdotes from the past
- always sneaking an extra hour of sleep in the morning
- a clutter-free house
- a good night sleep
- funniest home videos
- a tall mug with different-patterned heart print
- freshly-cooked, hot white rice for dinner
- ‘Citrus Smoothie’ hair conditioner
- newly pedicured toes
- garlic bread
- Jelly Ace
- sparkling mirrors after Windex
- vanilla cones
- smell of coffee

....and more.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

ten years ago....

.... I oooh-so loooove this song.

Just reminiscing.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

smell you later...!

The smell and feel of Pond’s Facial Wash will always and forever remind me of hot afternoons and old friends from USC in Cebu, in late 1993 and early 1994. We were freshmen in college, were makeup-free, and were somehow hooked on washing our faces with Pond’s every afternoon in our earnest attempt to keep our face pimple-free, oil-free and clog-free.

My mother-in-law had left a tube of Pond’s when she left for home last weekend. The other night, I tried to wash my face with it, and the unmistakable scent of it instantly reminded me how Claire would troop us all to the Ladies Room, after our first afternoon class, to wash our faces. It was a period of guilelessness and easy happiness. No mascaras, no concealers, no lipstick at all. Claire, with her freshly-scrubbed, flawless, cheery face always convinced us that “fresh and clean” was the way to go.

I miss those days. And I terribly miss my friends’ company. It’s funny how a simple, unassuming tube of a facial wash can intensely hint memories of friendship. I loved those girls! I remember that we had an extremely boring Religious Education and Sociology classes before, and it was almost a comfort to daydream of washing our faces afterwards. A cotton face towel and a tube of Pond’s Facial Wash were a fixture in each other’s handbags.

I have since switched to a different facial wash a few years after I left USC, but Pond’s will always have a special nook in my heart. It will always be a reminder of a period in my life when relationships, household chores, career and finances are unknown entities just yet. Back when what mattered most were friends, grades (1.0s!), books, exams and having a great time.

Ah, youth.