Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Curious experience: Sto. Niño exhibit

Yesterday, Vince and I went to the city hall to pay our annual real estate tax. Mandaluyong has a very efficient city hall so, even though we brought reading materials, we didn't get to do any reading because our papers were processed rather quick.

Plus, there was this to distract all the dutiful citizens: an exhibit of Sto. Niños. It was so fascinating. And that's saying a lot considering I'm not a Catholic. I think it's worth seeing. The exhibit starts with this baby Jesus on a horse. This is owned by the mayor.

Lots of different kinds of Sto. Niños, old and new, big and small.

A collection of sleeping baby Jesus.

The only two Sto. Niños that showed His purpose on earth.

Jesus was a carpenter but this Sto. Niño showed he could make shoes as well.

He's also a cute soldier.

Sto. Niños in various garb: soft robes, barong, tin and none at all.

We wish we had brought our cameras! Instead, I had to use my Blackberry to shoot these. Fascinating exhibit, even for us who aren't Catholics. If you have the time, go and see it at the Mandaluyong City Hall. I don't know when it will end, though, so drop by soonest.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Last few days to grab Circuit's January issue!

My first cover story of the year is on Circuit magazine. It's a stunning cover of Iza Calzado. My story on her was pretty easy to do—I just asked what she's planning this year (amass a fortune!) and what she's always wanted to do but haven't (tons, one of which is to be a journalist like me!).

Anyway, here are a few behind-the-scenes shots from the shoot and interview last December:
That's Iza in beauty-prep mode. Beside her is my baby's yaya. We're at Raymund Isaac's photo studio near Kamagong, Makati.

Sooo many shoes and clothes! Of course, the finished product, you only see one outfit (the other photo inside is just her face) and no shoes at all. So to those of you who think stars and stylists have so much fun at shoots, think again. Stylist scours malls and designers to borrow stuff. Star tries on many outfits and poses in them so editors have a lot of options and then editors choose two or three looks only!

Also having a photo shoot was Giselle Toengi. She is tiny! I'm only 5'3" and I'm in flats here. I think Giselle was wearing heels here, but not very high heels. She's like this doll! She loved Iñigo bear!

So did her daughter! That's Sakura. She and Iñigo adored each other!

I talk a bit about this article on my professional website. Grabe your copy of Circuit! Mwah!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Plans went awry

Crazy busy January. This was not how I imagined my January. I thought I'd be a housewife—cooking, fixing up the house, organizing, going to the playground with the kids, going on romantic dates with the husband.

I did do all the above plus met unbelievable weekly (sometimes daily!) deadlines for magazines, the newspaper column, websites, blogs. Plus meetings with clients. Plus events. Plus prayer meetings. Plus dates with friends. Plus being with family.

I am no longer sleeping. I am busier now than when I was employed!

I should be happy. And I am! It feels so good to be writing again! And it feels so good to the ego to be so wanted, you know?

But this was not how I imagined my January. I didn't imagine (or want) to be busy. I thought I'd be a housewife! I planned on being a donya! Pa-parlor-parlor lang, ladies' lunch with my friends that I never see, do crafting, finally read the many books I've been buying over the years, finally read the magazines I subscribe to, bake desserts, take classes in this and that, do a Kapitolyo eating tour with Vince, visit museums with the kids, travel with my boys, mani-pedi, massage, yoga... Leisurely life lang naman ang plan ko for 2013! Been busy since 1999 dammit. I've earned my rest!

Must reassess things.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

What yummy color should I get?

I have a ton of sponsored posts to do but this isn't one of them. Yep, instead of working, I am online shopping. Uh oh.

I just bought 2 pairs of flats from The Ramp Crossings. I liked my online shopping experience with them! Easy navigation, many payment options, really fast delivery. I think I will buy more flats from them. Yes, flats. I gave away some of my heels recently and am in the process of giving away more. I decided that my life now is to be lived in flats so I'm freeing up space in the shoe closet so I can buy more flats.

Anyway, I'm rambling.

My next online shopping destination is Zalora. I mean, really, who can ignore Zalora when they are on this huge advertising blitz?! They're everywhere: blog ads, YouTube ads, Facebook ads. Crazy. So here's what I want: a phone case for my Blackberry. Haha! I knooooow. I'm soooo boring! I'm in the process of simplifying my life, remember? So no mega-shopping for stuff. But I do need a phone case. And I found Paperthinks. I love it!

So what color should I get?


I'm also eyeing their iPad case. I need one for my iPad3. That's what Vince got me for my birthday but I haven't been able to use it because Vito's addicted to the iPad. If I use it, he grabs it and then he won't stop and then I'll take it away from him and then he'll cry and then... So I just never use it! But with my new status as freelance writer, I'll have to. I'd rather bring the iPad to meetings rather than the heavy MacBook! So I think I'll get me this:

What do you think??? Has anyone here tried Zalora? How's the shopping experience?

*all photos from Zalora

Monday, January 14, 2013

My Top 10 Golden Globe gowns (updated with videos of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler)

Awards season is here! My favorite is always the Golden Globes. It's the one that kicks off the glam red carpet season but it's always the most fun and relaxed. The stars say it's because champagne is flowing from the time they get down from their limousines, throughout the ceremony and all the way to the after parties. So they're having fun. Unlike the Oscars where alcohol isn't served and so everyone's nervous.

Anyway, this year's red carpet was a little more boring than usual. Although I must admit that there were some dresses that were far out (like Guiliana Rancic's). I'm not averse to strange fashion but I am averse to weird styling. For example, the gown's great but the hair isn't (I'm talking about you, Sarah Hyland) or the makeup failed (Kaley Cuoco). 

So here is my list of who did it everything to perfection:
Salma Hayek knows how to flaunt her unbelievable curves. Don't hide them, sure, but don't expose them either. Instead, make yourself look luscious in a dress that drapes all over your body. It doesn't hurt that the dress is Gucci.

Ariel Winter shows us how to dress your age! I love the saccharine colors on the classic dress shape. I also love how she matched her headband to her shoes. Oh, to be young and have fun with your clothes!

Normally, I am not a fan of big ball gowns. I think they're inconsiderate. You know, you have to make way for them when they pass. I guess that's why stars and brides love them. But Julianne Hough looks amazing in this Monique Lhuillier. Her eye makeup and hair take this white-and-gold gown from bridal to rock glam.

Brides, this is a great look. Simple, soft and sexy. While this is a tame number for Megan Fox (in Dolce & Gabbana), let's take into account that this is one of the first few outings of the wife and new mommy to a little baby. I love how she looks so gorgeous! Moms, eto ang peg!

Here's another one. New mommy Sienna Miller is so adorable in Erdem. I love the pink, the appliques, the shape—so 60s. I even love the no-makeup makeup and slicked back hair. Had she worn big hair, she'd look like she's wearing a costume. 

Zooey Deschanel has got her look down pat. Thick bangs, thick eyeliner, tiny waist, big poufy skirt. Always! But in this red Oscar de la Renta accented by big pearls, she's all class.

New bride Anne Hathaway in white Chanel. So sleek! Love the hair, love the texture of the dress. Love how long and tall she is. Kinda safe, sure, since Anne is known to love being adventurous on the red carpet but I like it. I do!

I love this, too! Michelle Dockery in Alexandre Vauthhier. To be honest, I do think the big shoulders trend is already out but the British actress can really pull off the gold armor and white drapery. Not a lot of women can do that!

Nicole Richie in Naeem Khan. What a surprising color! She used it on her lids, too. I think I want this gown for myself!

Kate Hudson in Alexander McQueen. Perfection! Kate always looks like a movie star. Always!

Who're your top picks?

UPDATE! Funny ladies Tina Fey and Amy Poehler!

Plus Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig!

Crazy people! Love them!

*photos from InStyle and E! Online

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Thank you for my gifts!

Oh my, I've had such a wonderful holiday season but Christmas is finally over. The pink tree has been packed away but the gifts, oh the gifts, they're still piled high! Vince is telling me to put them all away!

I got such great goodies from my family and friends. Thank you all so much! I'd also like to send a special thanks to all the brands and entrepreneurs who sent me their love:

A huge box of feminine prettifiers. I don't even know if prettifier is a word but anyway! Thanks, Unilab, for the loads of Myra, Body Cravings, Celeteque, Asian Secrets and Swish stuff! I'm especially liking the Asian Secrets Lulur Whitening Body Scrub. Thanks!

Three boxes of yummy mamon from Monde! This was our breakfast for almost all of December! Thanks so much for feeding us, Monde!

I love home fragrances. I have a shelf full of oils, candles and sprays. So this was a welcome gift. Three fragrances for a different part of your home—from kitchen to linen closet. Thanks, Zen Zest!

Okay, this gift made even the yayas happy. Vito gets to try out a lot of bath products but Iñigo is an exclusive Mustela user. Unlike Vito, Iñigo never had that newborn smell. You know that wonderful heavenly smell? Iñigo always smelled like a sweaty little boy. His pedia says it's because he's fat. It's the grease we smell. We tried all the baby bath products out there and it was this—Mustela!—that cleansed his skin so well and so gently that he smelled like a real baby. So for Iñigo, it's Mustela forevah! Thanks, Mustela, for the gift!

And this is my love, Heather Gray. It's Bitbit the Rabbit from ultra adorable (and proudly Pinoy!) brand Spinkie. I fell in love with Bitbit rabbits early last year but couldn't decide on what to buy since each and every design was beyond adorable. Finally, Vince said I should get the brown and pink, our wedding colors. I did and when Vito saw it, he promptly claimed it. So I've been yearning for my very own Bitbit and Spinkie sent me Heather Gray! Thank you so much, Spinkie!!!

A surprise from Forme. Isn't Forme a fashion brand? I guess they're going into the lucrative beauty business, too! Thanks, Forme, for the hand and body lotion!

This made me squeal in delight! A set of luxury bedsheets and duvet cover from Butterfly Dreams. This is pricey because it's like the softest cloth ever with super high thread count! They were looking through my blog and said that my new Ethan Allen headboard needed fancier sheets (Vince says that's what we get for posting photos of our nice headboard and our ratty sheets!). Woah, diba?! Thanks, Butterfly Dreams, for being my fairy godmother!

These are adorable. Friendship bracelets from Catalogue 63. Yes, this year was when I shopped at the online fashion boutique. I loved my dresses and, of course, my turquoise gown that has gotten a lot of mileage! Thanks for appreciating your shoppers, catalogue 63. I heart my friendship bracelets! 

Oh oh! I super love this gift from Sun Life! As you all know by now, Sun Life is our insurance and investments agency. So we love Sun Life. But now we love them more because of this Sun Jar! Vince used to have one. He loved it. And I broke it. It was a silly accident (stupid me put it on a narrow ledge) and I always said I'd replace it but this Sun Jar is just so expensive so I haven't. I think Vince has always been a little heartbroken because of that. So thank you, Sun Life, for saving my marriage!!!

Books for a book lover! Thanks, Fully Booked! What I love most about this gift is all the books here are published by Fully Booked. It inspired me to write a book and maybe let Fully Booked publish it!

All of the above beauty goodies are from L'Oreal! My dear L'Oreal family. I'm especially loving the Kiehl's, Pureology and Lancome stuff because I really use their products. I also use shu uemura's famous eyelash curler so I was freaking out in delight when they sent me a gold-plated one!!! The rest of the loot, I am so giddy to try out. Thanks, L'Oreal!

Okay, there's a lot more photos in my Blackberry (ya, sorry for the grainy shots!). I'll upload them in another post. Meanwhile, for this instalment, I just really want to say thank you to the people and brands who remembered me on Christmas. You are all so appreciated! Let's work together this 2013!