Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Answered Prayer

God does answer some prayers.

For the past six months, I've been hoping and praying that I would one day get out of my boss' line of sight and be set free. Come on, don't you think it's plain cruelty to set an employee's cubicle right next to her boss'? Whether you wanna believe it or not, everybody has a love/hate relationship with their bosses. I'm no different. My boss is what I'd call, a strange fellow and a total geek. I mean, who uses the words 'my neurons are firing' when explaining that 'he's thinking'? Either he wants to impress people with his science vocabulary (sure, he has a PhD in Chemistry, but still...) or he's just plain nerdy (Says the woman who name her cat Atom ;-)). After a while, I did get used to him being that way, unfortunately, I couldn't get used to the fact that he likes to micromanage people. Including me! As some of you may have already guessed, I'm a bit of a control-freak, so Chloie and any bosses, naturally, don't go very well together.

So imagine my utter happiness when the plant manager announced that they're building my boss an office! You know... that enclosed space with a wooden door that will completely isolate him and block me from his prying eyes? Yes, that's the one!

Now, I can do my work better.

And finally get the chance to blog from time to time.

Happiness. Sheer happiness.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Happy Holidays!

In case you're wondering, I had a wonderful christmas.

Granted that I wasn't able to go to St Paul, Minnesota to visit my cousin because the darn city got plowed with snow, but still, I have learned a lesson, or at least, confirmed what I've always suspected... you can never trust the IRS, an a**hole ex-boyfriend, or those weathermen . They say one thing, and then turn around and say another. And granted also that my 3-year old supposedly reliable Toyota decided to inform me that there might be trouble with the engine right before I was to pick up my Mom and my sister from Indiana, but still, I ended up driving in style in my husband's precious Mustang.

The day before christmas, my excited husband gave me a gift that reaffirmed why I married him. (Boy, that guy certainly knows how to please me!) He gave me one of the most amazing piece of jewelry I've ever seen. It was a beautiful white gold necklace accented with perfect diamonds and with a gorgeous pearl as the centerpiece. Naturally, I squealed with delight and told him he's the best husband ever. I am such a woman.

I spent Christmas day sleeping in, eating, driving, eating again, opening gifts, eating yet again and then watching Avatar in 3D. In that order. May I say... that movie was out of this world, literally and figuratively! It was amazing! It certainly lived up to the hype. It's one of the best $10.25 I've ever spent. Watch the movie, if you haven't yet.

Okay, time to go back to my thorougly enjoyed break from work.

Happy holiday, my friends!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Total Blog Make-over

I'm doing a complete make-over and changing the title and tone of this blog.

These past couple of months, intead of being the inspirational blogger that I used to be, I've succumbed to being the poor, pathetic whiner that I can be sometimes.

Enough already.

I can't promise to be jolly all the time, but from now on, I'll try my very best to be the happy, carefree, fabulous person that I know I am. Trust me, I am. It's just buried beneath a drama queen persona with a flare for histrionics and a tendency to have sporadic depression attacks.

So from now on, no more mushiness or sentimental stories. I would try my very best to entertain you only with fabulous tales of my extraordinary life.

Until of course, I experience another meltdown.

Friday, December 18, 2009

My Aha Moment


"A happy life is just a string of happy moments. But most people don't allow the happy moment, because they're so busy trying to get a happy life." - Abraham Hicks

A few days ago, my boss told me a story about a guy he knew who worked so hard his entire life and saved so much money for retirement, only to die of heart attack a week after he retired. The story touched my heart and opened my mind in a way I can't fully explain.

Truth be told, I've spent most of life planning for the future and trying to figure out my life's purpose. I plan my life to a T and base most of my happiness on the fruituition of my dreams. There are times when I become so obsessed with them, that I forget to live life at the moment and enjoy its simple pleasures. These past couple of months, I've been so sad (sometimes bordering on depression) just because I feel like nothing in my life is turning out the way I planned it to be. I become consumed with thoughts of bills I have to pay, the dream wedding I had to postpone, the baby I wished I have, that I tend to forget that I have a brand new, beautiful house and three nice cars, that I have a great husband who completely adores me, that I have family and friends who supports me, and that we have all the food we want on the table.

Hearing this story was an Aha moment for me. It completely opened my mind to a new way of thinking.

I don't wanna live like this guy. I don't wanna live for the future. I wanna live in the moment while I can, and live life to the fullest.

As James Openheim said, ' The foolish man seeks happiness in the distance, the wise grows it under his feet.'

PS. Thanks to Liv from Bambola's Diary for that wonderful post card from Italy. You completely made my week! Enjoy your Europe trip!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Happy Birthday, Hubby!


Tomorrow is my husband's birthday. And so, I'll be spoiling him rotten. I'll get him the exercise bike he's always wanted, give him a full body massage and take him out to a fancy dinner. I'm also thinking of surprizing him tonight with a treasure hunt of small gifts, and with me as the grand prize. ;-) if he found all of them. He deserves it, for everything he has done for me.

So to my utterly beloved husband... Happy birthday, Honey! I thank God everyday for the day you were born, and for giving you to me.

Friday, December 4, 2009

This Thing Called Marriage


Joseph Barth once said, 'Marriage is the last, best chance to grow up'.

I couldn't agree more.

With 30 years of life experiences, I thought I've seen it all, and had grown into a wise and mature woman. I mean, 30 years? That's a lot! When I was a kid, I thought my 30 year-old cousins were ancient! I thought I have learned how to react to situations accordingly, how to handle problems maturely, and how to deal with life in general. I thought I had grown up. But then, I got married.

And boy, was I ever wrong!

Marriage forces people to grow up... really grow up. You learn how to be less selfish and to sometimes put another person's needs above yours. You learn to love unconditionally without expecting anything in return, and to be considerate of someone else's feelings. You learn that things don't always go according to your plans and you won't always get what you want, but still be okay with it. You learn to be more responsible about finances, about bill paying and about prioritization. Marriage has lots of challenges, but you learn to deal with each of them by trying to be strong, and not crying at the slightest disappointment. You learn to speak your mind without being too hurtful and not keep things bottled inside, because silent treatment doesn't do either of you good. You learn that you're not always right, probably just 90% of the time ;-). You learn how to apologize when you made a mistake, because it's not true that love means never having to say you're sorry. You learn how to forgive, and not to bear grudges. You learn how to argue in a nondestructive way, and pick the right battles.

But with it all, you learn to relax and let go of the past, because you have your present life with a man who makes you happy. You learn to appreciate all the love your husband has to offer, and to thank him for every single thing he does for you. You learn how it is to belong, and how to share your life completely and freely.

And best of all, you learn that 'to love and be loved' is the best thing life has to offer.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Q and A

Hope everybody had a great thanksgiving celebration! I know I did! My husband and I hosted our first thanksgiving/housewarming party at our new house. We all had a blast! Everything turned out according to plans. Well, almost everything, except ... can you believe this? I accidentally left the gizzard bag on the baked turkey ;-). Surprisingly, the turkey still turned out good! Silly me! Just goes to show how good of a cook I am! Good thing my Mom was around and was such a big help!

Anyway, last week, I posted the question... What are the things you used to believe in when you were a kid, but realized later weren't true?

And here are the reader's answers...

Bambola from Bambola's Diary:
That my dad knew & could fix everything. I'm in my 20's now and still think that sometimes. It's an "oh yeah" moment when he has to say he doesn't know. :)It's not a bad realisation though, it's a human, grounding one.

Jamie from His n Her Towels:
My husband believed that the World Series, was actually called the 'World Serious' - because it was a really serious baseball game.

This is bad, but as a child I believed that if a man and women were "making love" on tv or a movie, that they were actually, physically doing the deed. I think it is safe to say that I was confused about sex most of my childhood.

Just me:
i think the most powerful one is the fact that you cannot change anything and that in reality, no one can change you. you may make decisions that are not so good, that you can later joke, "oh, it was because of THEM that i did this." but in reality....it's ALL YOU!!!

C from Midwestern Mama with a New York Heart:
1. what i thought nursing was about sure as hell isnt reality.
2. that my marriage, if i ever got married, would last forever.
3. that catholiscism was the ONLY true religion.

anonymous reader:
1. i would married by age 24-25, and i'm very sure about it, but when i'm at end of 25, i realized i'm still not ready...
2. used to believe life is very simply...but it's not actually..

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Question of the Week


I'm starting a weekly thing where I ask a question and you, my lovely blogger friends will provide the answers. I'll post all your answers sometime that week, together with my own opinion or ideas.


So here's my question of the week...


What were the things you used to believe in when you were a kid, but realized later weren't true?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Things That Bring a Smile to My Face



  • My husband's sweet hugs and kisses.

  • The smell of my Mom's cooking after a long day at work (she's here with us on vacation).

  • Phone call from my beloved sister.

  • The sight of our lovely newly-built house.

  • the glipmse of sunset from my window.

  • my Mom and Dad's comforting words.

  • my 8-year old nephew's endless chatter.

  • my husband telling me he loves me.

  • reading other people's blogs.

  • receiving comments from my blogger friends.

  • our coming 1st year wedding anniversary in Las Vegas.

  • our housewarming/thanks giving party for family and friends.

  • the smell of fresh flowers from our dining table.

  • my boss getting a new office and finally getting out of my hair.

  • promising results from the project I'm working on.

  • listening to funny Elvis Duran on my way to work.

  • having a family who loves me wholeheartedly.

  • having supportive in-laws who cares about me deeply.
  • having totally amazing friends.

  • knowing I have a wonderful man who thinks the world of me!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

This Will Pass Away, Too

I found this poem by Helen Steiner Rice and loved it!!!


If I can endure for this minute
Whatever is happening to me,
No matter how heavy my heart is
Or how dark the moment may be ...

If I can remain calm and quiet
With all the world crashing about me,
Secure in the knowledge God loves me
When everyone else seems to doubt me ...

If I can but keep on believing
What I know in my heart to be true,
That darkness will fade with the morning
And that "this will pass away, too!" ...

Then nothing in life can defeat me
For as long as this knowledge remains
I can suffer whatever is happening
For I know God will break all the chains
That are binding me tight in "the darkness"
And trying to fill me with fear ...

For there is "no night without dawning"
And I know that "my morning" is near.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Surrendering to Fate

I've always believed that, except in certain aspects of our lives, our journey in this planet Earth is something that we can orchestrate on our own.
I was wrong.

We can plan our life to a T, and put in all our dedication and hardwork, but the truth is... if it's not meant to be, it's not meant to be. There are things in life that are just out of our control, and no matter how hard we try, we can't force them to happen.

This latest experience of mine had humbled me. It's ironic how I tried to orchestrate my path to motherhood by dumping a guy who can't give me a child, only to fall deeply into the arms of another one who can't. Maybe it's karma or maybe it's God's way of telling me something. I don't know what it is, but I know one thing for sure. I'm done being sad! I can cry my eyes out, moan and curse my fate but the thing is, it won't do me any good. It's something that is totally out of my control. And so, I'm surrendering to whatever God has in store for me. I'm done trying to map out my life. I will never lose hope for my future, but I will live life, one day at a time.

Hhhmmm.... maybe I should change the the title of my blog from Orchestrated Destiny to Surrendering to Fate. What do you think, my dear friends? ;-)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Broken Heart


My worst nightmare had came true.

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my utterly strong desire to have a baby and become a mother. There is nothing I want more than to have one. My husband and I had been trying for six months now and so far we haven't had any luck. People had been telling me that I just need to be patient, but I coulnd't. I had to know if there's something wrong or at least get my peace of mind if there isn't. So I dragged my husband to the doctor and had ourselves checked.

Turned out there is something wrong. We still need to talk to the doctor to clarify (it was just the assistant who told us the initial results) and know what our options are, but so far, we know that there's a problem and we might go through some trouble trying to conceive. I don't know all the exact details yet but I will on Thursday.

Needless to say, I felt so crushed. I spent the whole weekend crying my eyes out. Even now, as I write this post, I can feel the tears brimming from my eyes. I honestly don't know what to do. I'm still hoping for the best... hoping that we do have several options, because I don't think I can take it if we don't. I woke up this morning feeling this huge emptiness in my heart. I can't go through this. I'm not strong enough for it. And I don't think I've done anything so wrong to deserve this kind of pain. I know in my heart I would be a great (not just good) mother.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Back from California


I'm back from California, and though I'm very happy to be back in my husband's arms, I can't say I'm too happy to be back in this darn cold Ohio weather.

Anyway, my trip went really well.

First of all, my talk was well-received. I was nervous at first, but once I got going, all the nervousness flew and I started talking with more confidence. A lot of people stood up to congratulate me, and even the chairman of the session told me I had the best presentation he had seen. Needless to say, I was so happy and proud.

And of course, I finally saw my childhood bestfriend again... after 18 years! We had such a great time catching up. I missed her so much. She's still the same pretty and wonderful friend I've always known her to be. She's getting married next year and I'm so happy for her.

One strange thing, though. I got asked out twice during the conference. Sure, I know I'm hot (hahaha), but I've got a wedding ring on! How could these guys ignore the fact that I'm married and still invite me out for dinner and drinks? In a way, I know it's easier to start a conversation when you're in a conference (there's an abundance of topics to talk about), but don't they have the decency to chose a single woman? I've been to conferences before and I've been asked out a few times too, but I was single then, so it didn't bother me. My situation is different now! What do they expect? A one-night stand? Maybe I'm just over-reacting, but I'm beginning to wonder if these things are really common in these types of gatherings, and I was just oblivious about it. (Come to think of it, my Ex cheated on me while he was in one!) And this happens to be a technology conference... with lots of supposedly professional men! Anyway, I said No (of course) and tried to avoid them the rest of the day.

Still, I'd say the conference went pretty well. I saw all these amazing technological progresses, and I'm happy to be a part of a field that contributes to bettering peoples lives. It's times like this when I feel that I'm somehow making a difference in this society we live in.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Baby Fever


Why is it that the more you want something, the more elusive it seems to you?

I've never wanted something in my life before as much I do now.

I desperately wanted to have a baby.

My husband and I have been trying for five months now, and so far we haven't had any luck. I know I should just relax and wait patiently, but as much as I try, I couldn't. It's easier said than done. I go through a roller coaster emotion of having so much hope, and then feeling crushed whenever I realize it's not happening that month. And then, as if the world wants to taunt me for wanting it, I see babies and pregnant mothers everywhere. My co-worker's wife is expecting twins, my friend in Michigan just gave birth, and even my teenage cousin, who's definitely not ready to have a baby, is having an accidental pregnancy.

And as time goes by, I become more and more worried and scared. I go through a slight depression once a month when I get my womanly thing. But...I won't give up. I have faith that one day, he or she will come. Becoming a mother is really very important to me. I don't know how I'll react if I find out we can't have at least one child. In fact, as terrible as this might make me sound, I broke up with a guy I used to date when he confessed to me that he can't have kids. He understood though, and let me go. He and I knew that if I ended up with him, I might be happy in the short term, but I'd be unhappy in the long run. (Maybe this is my karma? Please God, no!) I just would never feel fulfilled. That's how motherhood means to me.

So my blog friends, please pray for for me and my husband. I need your prayers and support.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Simple Pleasures of Married Life


This morning, as I was getting ready to go to work, Hubby gave me a tight hug and a passionate kiss, and said:

I LOVE YOU SO MUCH, HONEY... EVEN THOUGH YOU FRUSTRATE ME SOMETIMES ;-)

Isn't he adorable? Hahaha...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Off to California in a Week...

A week from today, I'll be off to the lovely state of California! I'll be giving a talk at a four-day science conference in San Jose. I wish I can say I'm completely excited (I've never been to California before), but I'm a little bit nervous. I haven't given a serious talk since graduate school, so this is kinda nerve-wracking. Imagine giving a presentation to dozens of strangers! Plus, this is a business trip - I'll be traveling with my boss and I'm pretty sure we'd spend almost all our time at the conference hall, listening to other speakers and meeting future suppliers and customers.

But... I'm very happy and proud that my work have been acknowledged. It's times like this that makes all the harwork worthwhile.

And of course, since I'd already be there, I wouldn't miss the oppurtunity to see my childhood bestfriend, who I haven't seen in 19 years! We were practically kids when we've last seen each other. We've been talking of meeting up for several years now, but it has never materialized. Now, we can, and I'm very excited about it.

So California, here I come!


Monday, October 19, 2009

I'm drooling...

This weekend, Hubby went to Michigan to see his family, and I stayed at home and hang out with my Mom who came here for a vacation. I dragged her to the movie theater to watch the movie 'Law Abiding Citizen', since the trailer looks good and I've been hearing wonderful reviews.

May I say...I wasn't disappointed at all. Granted that the movie was a little violent - okay, maybe too violent that I had to close my eyes during some bloody scenes - the plot however, was great and the whole movie was well-acted. I was taken by surprise with the ending, which says a lot, because that doesn't happen to me in a lot of movies.

And of course, Gerard Butler is freakin' hot!!! He's got a body to die for. (He showed his bare chest and butt in the movie!!!).

Case in point....




Hand me a tissue, please. I think I'm drooling ;-).

Friday, October 16, 2009

Say Hello...

... to an official homeowner!

Hubby and I signed our closing documents for our brand new house two weeks ago and moved in this past weekend. And may I say... it's one of the happiest month of my life! I'm so psyched and excited! I feel like I reached another milestone in my life... another check on my List of Dreams. It's times like these when I feel that all my hardwork has paid off, and every single tear and pain was worth it. And I feel so blessed.

Anyway, our house has two stories with four bedrooms and 2 and a half bath. Our master bath has a beautiful jacuzzi - how cool is that? All our bedrooms are upstairs, one of which we turned into an office/library. We have a big formal dining area and a beautiful kitchen with a small island that I wanted. The basement is not finished yet, but Hubs have an idea of dividing it into three areas - a spots bar, a work out room and a theater room with a big projector screen and recliner sofas. We also bought new furnitures to go with the new house, and I absolutely love them! We spent the whole week unpacking and decorating. In fact, we had all our boxes unpacked and the whole house looking like home in one week, it's almost unbelievable! I guess that's what excitement does to people.

Right now, I'm really just enjoying being a first-time homeowner!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Crossroads

A few years ago, I came across a major crossroad in my life. I was pursuing a doctorate degree in chemistry, but my heart just wasn't in it anymore. I was restless and very unhappy. I've been in school for what feels like forever and was dying to move out. I wanted to move on to the professional world and live a different life. On top of that, I was reeling from the worst and most painful heartache I've ever experienced in my whole life. I had just broken up with a cheater boyfriend who happened to be my very first big love. I was utterly depressed and devastated. Needless to say, I felt an absolute need to leave the university and all things that reminded me of him.

But... the university was also my comfort zone. It was a place I've always been comfortable with. My friends were there and everything else that was familiar to me. Aside from that, I was scared of how my family would react if I quit my PhD studies.

I weighed the pros and cons, and mulled over my dilemma thoroughly. I went back and forth with indecision. Finally though, I made a decision to pursue my happiness. I quit my PhD studies and switched to the shorter Masterals. I've never been a quitter, but my heart was telling me it's time to make a change. I knew I was more than ready to leave the university and pursue a different life. Part of me felt that I was running away, but a bigger part tells me I need to start a new life. I wanted to be happy and I knew I won't be if I stayed there. Surprisingly, my family was very supportive of my decision. My parents told me to do what I think was best for me and what will make me happy.

It's been three years since and all I can say is... I'm glad I made that decision. I found a job right after I got my MS degree, and a year later met my husband. If I didn't, I would have graduated last fall and probably had been one of those people still searching for a good job due to the economic downturn. If I stayed in school, I probably had been miserable with the memories of the jerk instead of meeting the love of my life.

I admit that there are times when I'd have pangs of regret. Like that time when I attended my friends' graduation (the same time I would have graduated if I pursued PhD) and watched them walk on the stage, I thought for a moment, that would have been me. I would have walked on that stage and got my doctoral certificate. I would have been Dr. Chloie by now. But I think of all the good things that happened after I made my decision, and I forget all my regrets.

There are times in life when you reach a crossroad and the path ahead looks so uncertain. Just trust yourself and follow what your heart tells you. Sooner or later, you'll realize why you chose that path in the first place.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

On Patriotism

I'm not what you'd exactly call a very patriotic person.

I mean... I left the Philippines despite the ongoing brain drain to go and get a job abroad, I pay taxes to a different country, I married a foreigner, and bought a house in this foreign soil. And I don't think I would sacrifice my life for my country or for any patriotic reasons.

But... I do love my country.

I defend it whenever someone says something bad about it. I feel proud whenever I hear a fellow countryman like Manny Pacquiao bring honor to it. I donate money to our less fortunate. I do have plans of going back when I'm ready to retire. And I do still call it my real home.

But most of all, I've always dreamt of making a difference in it.

I like to think that in a small way, I did several years ago.

I joined a rally calling for the resignation of the then-president who was laundering people's money. The guy was an actor-turned-politician who won the election by campaining as the champion of the masses and the man who would get people out of proverty. Two years later, it turned out that he was the one who would put the country in more debt.

So I, together with some of my friends, decided to join the 3 day vigil to call for his resignation. We marched several miles and gathered in front of the church where several officials from the opposition party give their talk. We camped there day and night. I did go home at some point to change clothes and to make sure my parents would not worry, but I'd always come back. I had never felt as patriotic as I did during those times. There was a feeling of strong unity and bond between everybody, and it was amazing. I felt, for once in my life, that I was fighting for something I believed in. I felt that I was a part of something bigger than myself and I was fighting for a cause. When after three days, news broke out that the president finally resigned, we were crying with tears of joy. It was such a joyful moment. I was so happy at that time because, in a small way, I felt like I was part of my country's history. Honestly, I wasn't thrilled with the vice president who replaced him, but we had to concede that for that time being, she was the lesser of two evils. (Now, I'm not so sure anymore!)

Anyway, I wish that one day, I'd experience something that amazing again. I'm still not willing to die for patriotic reasons, but I do hope that some day I can really say that I made a big difference in my country.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Be Thankful

My last post was such a downer that today, I decided to write something more inspiring! I feel much better now, thanks to positive thinking and to my blogger friends who left me some really encouraging remarks!


Sometimes when I'm worrying and stressing about a problem, I read astromy books. Weird I know, but they help remind me of how vast the universe is and of how, relatively, I am nothing but a microscopic dot with nanoscopic problems. They help put my thoughts in the right perspective.

If not, I read or watch the news. I read about how some amazing people bravely cope with the loss of friends or family through war or natural disasters. Of how some hardworking people struggle to find food in order to survive, or of how they deal with poverty with very little complains. It reminds me of how insignificant my problems are compared to other people. And it reminds me to be grateful for what I have instead of feeling sorry for myself.

So if you have a roof over your head, food to eat, a family who loves you, the next time you're stressing out, just think of all your blessings and how fortunate you still are compared to millions of people.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Emotional Wreck

Whenever I write, I try to be as positive as I can. I try to be inspirational, and focus my writing on the brighter side of life. I know how a whiner sounds like, and it's not always pretty.

I apologize in advance because this is not one of those days.

Lately, I've been an emotional wreck. I think it's mostly hormonal, but I'm feeling kinda unhappy and restless.

First of all, I don't think I enjoy my job anymore. I feel like it's becoming stagnant, and that I'm not moving forward. I just don't enjoy my job as I used to. My projects are lacking in excitement and my boss is getting on my nerves. I know it's partly my restlessness nagging at me again, but I do feel that I need to work in a new lab, see new faces... be in a new environment. I want a different kind of challenge. I wish I could just move to a different state, but it's not that easy. We're building a house so I can't just find a job somewhere else (nor my husband can) and relocate. I have to stay and find a job here, but we all know that jobs are few and far between because of the economy.

Secondly, when will our baby come? We've been trying for months now and the roller coaster emotions of being hopeful and then having my hopes crushed every month is draining. I'm trying to relax and not worry too much about it, but it's not always easy.

Anyway, enough of my pathetic whining. I guess I just have to be patient for now, and just look at the bright side of life... Okay, I'll give it a try and remind myself of all my blessings....

Our house is almost done, we should be closing and moving in on the first week of October. I'll be posting pictures soon. It's amazing how fast the progress is! Ryan Homes started building it the middle of July and they'll already be done at the end of next month! Kudos to those guys!

My Mom is coming next month. I'm so excited to see her. I haven't seen her since her last vacation here which was more than two years ago. I think she will help get me out of my crabby disposition. She always know how to deal with me.

I have a husband who is a patient and loving man. He's been very understanding through all my mood swings. Sometimes I feel terrible because I seem to try to push him to the limit, but he still tries. Maybe I really am too independent that living with someone is such a huge adjustment for me. Anyway, I should just be thankful for having him in my life.

And of course, I still have loyal blog friends who continually stick with me through my sporadic writing, and now, through my pathetic whinings. I love you guys!

Friday, August 28, 2009

To Sis

Exactly twenty seven years ago today, a beautiful baby girl was born. Although in my 3 year-old eyes, she was amazing, I was also aware that she's my competition and I will no longer be the sole apple of my parents' eyes.

Growing up, we had a rocky relationship. We loved each other fiercely, but like most kids, fought fiercely as well. We argued over toys, bickered over dresses, and made each other cry with hurtful childish remarks. Despite that, we had each other's back when somebody tries to hurt one of us, and never let anybody come between us. I protected her like a true older sister, and loved her with all my heart. She loved me strongly back, and though she only admitted it years later, I knew she looked up to me as a role model ;-).

We haven't always been together. I left home when I went to college and then left the country for graduate school. Our communication was mostly letters and phone calls, but I was sure that our bond will always be there.

And then a year ago, she also came to the United States to pursue graduate studies. Although we're 4 hours away from each other, we try to see each other every month and talk to each other almost everyday. I've never felt this close to her. It just seems like our bond even became stronger. I feel so blessed to have a sister like her.

She's just wonderful! She's a woman with a strong character. She's petite but she's feisty and determined. I've always admired how she goes after her dreams with such fervor. And she's very smart. All in all, she's just amazing!

So to Sis... happy birthday! I love you so much. I wish you all the best! I have faith that you'll get your doctorate degree with flying colors, and I'm praying that you'll find the right guy soon (",) who will cherish you for all the you are.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Newly Wed Life

No matter how well-prepared or well-equipped you think you might be for a married life, the truth is... nobody ever is. You might get all kinds of advices on how to deal with marriage, but until you experienced it yourself, you'll never know.

Don't get me wrong. I'm very happy, happier than I could ever be, and very much in love with my husband. I enjoy the moments we spend together and love the life we're building together.

But the newly-wed life is truly an adjustment period. It's when you really get to know the other person... what makes him tick, his idiosyncrasies, his little habits, etc; and vice versa. You might have an idea about these before, but after you're married, they become magnified because you now live together. If before you can retreat to your apartment whenever you have an argument and get mad, now you gotta face it and deal with it.

I've known my husband a year and a half before we were married. Although we didn't live together before that, we spent most of our free times - especially weekends - together. I've known him quite well... he never hid anything from me, nor I from him. I've known his every habit as well as his idiosyncrasies. But... I'm a moody person. I wish I could change that, but I can't. My moods affect my way of thinking. When I'm in a good mood, he can tease me about a bad hair day and I won't take offense, he can buy yet another new rim for his beloved sports car and I won't get mad, or we can go to an nth reunion with his family and I would willingly go. But, when I'm in a cranky mood intensified by female hormones, it's a different story. I'd have a low threshold of patience and could get irritated with small things. Before, I'd usually just go home to my apartment and let the feelings subside gradually, but now, I have to try to control my emotions and deal with the irrritation really fast.

Fortunately, I do have a husband who's very patient and who's trying to adjust to my mood swings as best as he can. He's learned to leave me alone when I'm cranky and in a bad mood. He is the sweetest guy I've ever known. Granted that he's a cleanliness freak who loves his cars, drags me to far too many family reunions than I care for, and acts like a big baby at times, he however, does household chores, gives me flowers, takes care of me and loves me to death.

Honestly, I couldn't ask for a better man. I know we're still in the adjustment period, but everyday, it gets better and better. I sure won't trade my life with him for anything in this world!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Following Your Own Advice

Why is it always so easy to give other people advices yet so hard to follow your own?

I take pride in being the one my friends usually come to or call whenever they have problems. My friends think I'm a rational person with full of good advices. To them, I seem to always know the right words to say to make them feel better, or come up with solutions to their problem.

The irony is, when it comes to my troubles, I have a hard time following my own advice. I usually know the right thing to do, yet can't seem to do it. Most of the time, I'm overcome with emotions that logical reasoning just fly out of the window. I hate to admit it, but my heart rule over my head sometimes... maybe most of the times. I make decisons based on what my heart feels, not on what my head tells me. Although in some instances, it has done me good, it has been my downfall in others.

I know I'm not the only one who struggles with this. A lot of people do, most especially women. The thing is, it's usually easier to see the picture when you're not in it... when you're from the outside looking on the inside. It's easier, because emotions don't cloud your judgement.

So my blog friends, do you have problem of following your own advice?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Quantity vs. Quality

When I was a teenager, I used to equate quantity with success.

I measured my accomplishments by how many competitions I won and how many awards I got at the end of the school year. I measured my popularity by how many schoolmates knew me and how many friends I had. I measured my attractiveness by how many boys asked me on a date and how many guys I have kissed. I was happy and proud whenever I feel like I have The Number.

Years later, I grew up and came to a realization.

It didn't matter how many awards I won unless I win the grand prize. The number of friends I have didn't matter unless they're the true definition of best friends. It didn't matter how many guys liked me if they're not the guys I like.

There are successes that I still equate to quantity today, though. It's not the number of people, money or things any longer, but the number of years. I count the number of years I struggled as a graduate student, the number of years I've been working as a fulfilled chemist and the number of years I was happy with a guy.

Years from now, I will be happy when I can say I've been blissfully married for fifty years now. That to me is a success.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Week in Review

Honestly, I feel a little out of sort this week, especially last Monday. It must be my hormones... but I was really moody and stressed out. Things perked up as the week progressed and by the weekend, I was in a good mood. Anyway, here's a recap of my week...

* Called IRS for the third time to check on the status of our first-time homebuyer's tax credit (since I mailed it last April 27). The first time I called them, they said it takes 6 to 8 weeks to process the refund. So I called them again on the 8th week, and they told me it can take 8 to 12 weeks. This week -the 12th week-, I called yet again, and guess what they said? It can take 12 to 16 weeks!!! WTH???

* Work, work, work. Started a new project researching for biocides that I can formulate with our products to prevent the growth of fungi and bacteria. Exciting work, but all these chemicals that I deal with scares me a bit since we're planning to have a baby. I guess I just gotta be extra careful.

* Went to a Hamburger Festival (yes, there's such a thing ;-) ) with Hubs. Good food and good music. Basically, I was happy it was the weekend.

* Discovered a canoe livery 20 minutes away from home, and spent 2 hours canoeing. It was fun, except for the part where we got stuck for 3 minutes trying to get out of the shallow part of the river. I enjoyed the whole thing though!

Now I'm all ready for the week ahead. Hope everybody enjoyed their weekend!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The In-Laws

Whenever we hear of the word in-laws, the first visions that come to mind (at least for me) are Deborah's meddling mother-in-law and weird father-in-law in the show 'Everybody Loves Raymond.' They were representations of how some (if not a lot) of in-laws, including that of my friends' and even my mother's, act towards them. They weren't exactly pretty pictures, and I grew up dreading what my future in-laws would be.

That is, until I finally met mine.

My mother-in-law is one of the best women I've ever known. She has a heart of gold! You can see it by the way she deals with her family and friends. She's very patient and loving. And best of all, she loves me! She definitely acts like my second mother. We talk on the phone every week and I get spoiled on Christmas days and birthdays. She's a really sweet woman with a genuine heart.

My father-in-law is great as well. He gets a little grumpy towards the grandkids from time to time, but he's a very sweet man. We have the same taste in books so he buys them for me sometimes ;-).

They say that when you marry a man, you marry his family. I'm glad I'm married to this one.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Restlessness

My mother told people when I was a kid that I'd grow up to be a restless person. This was based on an observation that I couldn't sit still when I was a baby, and that even when I'm supposedly resting in her arms, my feet were still in constant motion.

As it turned out, she had never uttered a truer statement.

Here I am several years later, definitely a restless soul. I don't know why but I always have a burning need to feel that my life is in a constant motion and not settling into a routine. I crave change and am so scared of getting stuck in a rut.

My husband used to tease me about the dreams and plans that I seem to constantly make. It took him a while to realize that I needed to make them to feel that I have something to look forward to. Even when my life seems to be the picture of perfect contenment, I still feel the need to know that my life will continually progress. The worst part is, I'm so restless I can't wait for the plan to come true so I can make another one.

Believe it or not, I always have a five-year plan.

I did come to realize, however, that things don't always go according to plans. Especially as you grow older and things become more complicated and out of your control.

When I was younger, it was easier to follow them. Go to one of the best universities in my country and get a chemistry degree in four years... check. Pass the licensure test in a year... check. Teach for four years... check. Go to a graduate school in US... check.

Although I can still put check marks on most of my dreams now, they don't always follow the path or order I set them to. Somehow, someway, other things happen and I needed to take a detour. I know that's how life is, and I'm very spontaneous when it comes to small things -like where we're gonna go for a vacation, what we'll be doing that weekend, etc -, but when it comes to life-altering plans, I take them so seriously, I just feel the need to plan ahead. And sometimes, it can get frustrating when the plans that you make don't always happen the way you planned them to be.

Allow me to explain.

After Hubs and I got engaged, I made a five-year plan. We were gonna have two weddings, have a baby, buy a house, then have another baby... in that order. But then, the US economic downturn happens, and for fear of the instability our jobs, we decided to forgo a big wedding here and just go to the courthouse and get married earlier. Then comes the first-time homebuyer's credit for people who wanna buy a house this year, and so we decided to buy one, and again, move our official wedding in my country to next year. However, I didn't feel like waiting for almost two years (after the big wedding) to have a baby, and so two months ago, we started trying to have one. So far, we're not having any success and I'm becoming frustrated. I know I just need to be patient, and believe that God will give him/her to me when the right moment comes. All things happen for a reason, right?

Anyway, enough of my silliness. I haven't blogged in more than a month and yet here I am, talking about my frustrations. Actually, most of the time I'm very happy. Married life is everything I hoped it would be. My husband is wonderful and amazing! I love him more every single day. Last week I celebrated my 30th birthday, and I came home to a dozen rozes, a new laptop and the sweetest card ever! He took me to a dinner/dance cruise and had a blast. Honestly I can't ask for a better husband. The last four months have been the happiest of my life. I won't say it's always easy (what is, anyway?), but it's been great most of the time.

I do apologise to all my bloggy friends for being a slacker - especially to AD who wrote me a sweet note of how she misses me during my absence ( I have such great bloggy friends!). My job is taking a lot of my time these days (I work in research so I have to come up with innovative products to stay competitive in our business), as well as our house-to-be and baby (",) project. And also, to be honest, I feel like my mind is in a blog rut. I have topics to right about, but I can't seem to start. I think I might have found the inspiration to write again, so hopefully my blog friends won't abandon me.

Friday, May 22, 2009

A Good Year

This year, 2009, is a milestone year for me. My life has changed- and continuously changes- in so many amazing ways, I could almost believe I'm dreaming. There are times when I just wanna sit and wonder how I got to be so fortunate and so blessed.

This year, I married the love of my life. After a year and a half of being together, we tied the knot and had never felt happier. Although we're still going through an adjustment period, we're blissful and so in love, the transition feels effortless.

This year, two of my papers from graduate school got published in scientific journals. Although I'm not looking for a new job right now, they would look really good in my resume - if or when I decide to do so. My family and my husband are so proud, I feel that my hardwork and efforts in graduate school paid off.

This year, we signed up with Ryan Homes to build a new house. Yes, we're gonna have a brand new house!!! It will be done at the end of September and I definitely can't wait! Hubs and I are so excited about it, we're already talking of furnitures and how we're gonna paint and decorate it.

This year, I'm turning thirty. I know I'm getting older and all, but I choose to see this as a blessing. With age, comes maturity and wisdom. It's a new decade of my life and a beginning of a new chapter. I've accepted the fact that my youth is over, and is more than ready to embrace the life ahead of me.

This year, I will get to see my family. We were supposed to go to my country for our big wedding, but after purchasing our new house, Hubs and I decided to move our wedding a few more months so we'll have more money to pretty up our home. I didn't want my parents to be too disappointed so I decided to just fly them here for the Christmas season.

This year, is definitely a good year.


Sidenote, on an entirely different topic (I just have to write this): I'm not a big sports fan but I love Cavaliers, and of course... Lebron James. He's just so amazing! And tonight, he just showed how amazing he can be! Go Cavs!

I know I haven't blog in a while, but I've been so busy with work and with our upcoming house I couldn't find a lot of time to sit down and write. But I do read all your wonderful blogs, even though I couldn't comment that often. I hope you all have a great Memorial Day weekend!!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Transition

When the closest experience you had of having a guy roommate is a one-week life with a friend who needed a temporary lodging, it takes a while to adjust to the concept of permanently sharing a house with someone. Of seeing that someone everyday of your life. Of asking for or being considerate of someone's opinion when it comes to household decisions. Even if that someone turns out to be... your husband.

I've lived alone and independently the last five years of my life. I had boyfriends (one at a time, of course) but I never lived with any of them. I had my own apartment and was happy being the queen of it. I go home whenever I want to, I cook whenever I feel like it, I do household chores whenever the mood strikes. A friend would call and ask me to meet him/her at the coffee shop, and off I'd go. I don't worry about sharing my bathroom or closet space with anybody. I don't worry about another person's taste in the apartment's decoration. In fact, as selfish as it sounds, when I'm home, I worry about nobody else but me.

Getting married and moving in together changed all that. But as much as I expected the changes, transitioning from a single life to a married one still caught me a bit off guard. I've been so used to living by myself that sometimes it doesn't register right away that not all the closet spaces are mine, that I can't just throw my clothes wherever I want to - even when I'm tired (because my husband is a cleanliness-freak), nor can I decorate my apartment with floral designs. I also do need to call my husband if I wanna work late or go out with my friends.

But more than house sharing, marriage is sharing a life together. That means I can't go spending all my money on clothes or leisurely travel on a whim anymore... because I have a future house and family to think of!

Sure, it takes only 15 minutes and a piece of paper to legally change your status from a single to a married lady, but it takes a few weeks, maybe months, for the i'm-a-married-woman-mindset to take effect!

But.... I wouldn't trade my life now for anything in the world. I felt that I've matured and officially became an adult. I'm learning to be a part of a couple, and I feel how it is to really belong. I'm learning to think more for the future that we (not just I) are planning to build. And believe it or not, I'm learning to be more domesticated. For some reasons, I'm starting to truly enjoy it. My husband makes it easier and more fun by sharing the household chores. And frankly, I coudn't wish for a better life than this!

Like most things in life, transition isn't always easy. But when you're blissful, it feels effortless.

Monday, April 20, 2009

30 Things

Just in time for my fast approaching 30th birthday (in a couple of months), I found this article written by Pamela Satran way back in 1997 (Glamour Magazine). I read it and fell in love with it. Just wanna share it with you...

30 Things a Woman Should Have... and Should Know by the Time She's 30....

SHOULD HAVE
* one old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you've come. (I love to believe I do)
*enough money within your control to move out and rent a place of your own, even if you never want to or need to. (Check)
* something perfect to wear if the employer or the man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour. (Always)
*a purse, suitcase and an umbrella you're not ashamed to be seen carrying. (Check)
* a youth you're contented to move beyond. (Fine!)
* a past juicy enough that you're looking forward to retelling it in your old age. (I think so!)
*the realization that you're actually going to have an old age and some money set aside to fund it. (Working on it)
*a set of screw driver, cordless drill and a black lace underwear. (Check)
*one friend who always make you laugh and one who lets your cry. (Check)
*a good piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family. (Check)
*eight matching plates, wineglasses with stems and a recipe for a meal that will make your guests feel honored. (Not really a good cook, so I'll pass ;-) )
* a resume that is not in the least bit padded. (Check)
*a feeling of control over your destiny. (A little bit)
* a skin regime, an exercise routine and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don't get better after 30. (Kinda... if only I'd move my lazy butt more often to exercise)
*a solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship and all those facets of life that do get better. (Check)

SHOULD KNOW
*how to fall in love without losing yourself. (Kinda... )
*how you feel about having kids. (Definitely)
* how to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship. (still hazy on the last one)
*when to try harder and when to walk away. (Kinda)
* how to kiss a man in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn't like to happen next. (Heck, yeah!)
*how to have a good time at a party you'd never chose to attend. (Check)
* how to ask for what you want in a way that makes it most likely you'll get it. (Check)
*that you can't change the length of your calves, the width of your hips or the nature of your parents. (Check)
* that your childhood may not have been perfect but it's over. (Unfortunately, yes.)
*what you would and wouldn't do for love or more. (Oh, yeah)
*how to live alone even if you don't like it. (I used to be Miss Independent)
*who you can trust, who you can't and why you shouldn't take it personally. (still learning)
* where to go ( be it your bestfriend's kitchen or a charming inn hidden in the woods) when your soul needs searching. (Definitely!)
*what you can and can't accomplish in a day, a month or a year. (Check)
*why they say life begins at 30. (Check, check, check!)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Love Knows No Cultural Boundaries

Never in my wildest childhood dreams did it occur to me, that I would someday travel thousands of miles away from home and meet my prince in a far, far away land. I've always thought that my knight in shining armor would be someone from my own country with the same culture, who eats the same food and speak the same language. I preferred it that way, since I thought that the connection and understanding between us would be better.

I came to the United States several years ago armed with that thought. Even though I was coming to a foreign soil, I hoped and prayed that I would still meet someone from my own land.

Somewhere along the way however, I met a guy with a different culture who opened my eyes to an entirely new way of thinking. He showed me that love knows no cultural or racial boundaries. We might each have different skin colors, eat different foods or observe different traditions, but deep inside, we're all humans who have the same ability to love, care for and connect with other human beings. It doesn't matter where you're from, the emotions that run through all our veins are the same. Although my relationship with him ended, I learned so much from him. He taught me, more than anything, to be more open-minded.

And so, I found happy ending in my real destined prince from this faraway land. Sure, he loves pizza and I love rice, he's crazy about football and I don't understand a thing about it, I speak a language he has no clue about, but... love holds us firm and strong. The truth is, we are much more similar than we are different. We have the same religious belief (which is that, we believe in God but not so much in religion), we both love to travel and hike, we agree on how to handle our finances, and we have the same visions for the future. More than that, he has all the qualities I look for in a guy... gorgeous, very smart, completely sweet, loves me unconditionally, knows how and when to say sorry, does his share of household chores... heck, what more can I ask for? His family even loves me like their own and make me feel like I really belong!

But most importantly, he and I have high respect for each other's cultures and has no difficulty on blending the two in our one shared life.

We still get the look from narrow-minded people occasionally (which I'm sure would also happen when I take him to the Philippines). But who cares? I know one thing for sure...

Love knows no racial or cultural boundaries. In fact, love knows NO boundaries.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Of Men, Dating and Love

For women's eyes only ;-)

I'm not a Men or Dating Expert. I'd be honest and say that I did date a number of guys on my search for Mr. Right (as I'm sure most of you did), but I don't think that makes me an expert. I can say however, that with each dating mishap and/or experience, I tried to learn as much as I can, and made sure that I won't repeat the same mistake over and over again. And now that I have left the dating world behind, I wanna share the lessons I've learned (and still learning) about men, dating and love in general. Feel free to add yours...

*There's no such thing as love at first sight. Love takes time to blossom and flourish. Love is when you know the person (really know him... which takes time), and can accept him for everything he is - flaws and all. Dont confuse lust or attraction with love.

*Don't date just because you're bored, afraid of being single or because the guy's nice. Date a guy because you can feel the chemistry between the two of you. Trust me, you'll end up happier.

*Most men are big babies. No matter what age they are. They wanna be cuddled, shown affection and unconditionally loved... but then again, who the heck doesn't?

*No matter what they say, men love to chase (or at least be challenged) and women loves being chased. There's a right amount of chasing though, so be careful. Too many games can ruin what might be a good relationship.

* If a guy is really into you, you'll know. (Remember the movie, He's Not That Into You? So true! And I love that movie, btw!) Pay attention to his actions, not his words.

* Don't waste your time on a guy who's not that into you thinking you can change his mind. There's a 95% chance he won't. Life is too short to waste it on the wrong person.

* Men will always look at, or notice, an attractive women - even if they're already in a relationship. They can't help it, they're inherently visual creatures. But it doesn't mean that they love you less, so don't get jealous. Besides, let's be honest... don't we notice attractive men, as well?

* Men wanna be with women who are attractive to them. They have different ideas of beauty though, so even if you're not Angelina Jolie or Heidi Klum look alike... no worries. You're attractive to your man!

* A lot of men don't have an idea of how to really romance a woman the way women want them to. They usually have a different idea. So if you want something, you gotta ask for it. If your guy listens and wants to please you, then you know you've got a good man who loves you.

Ladies, what have you learned from dating?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Taking Risks

Let's say you're traveling on a forest and reached a crossroad where you have to choose between two routes that lead to your destination. One is a safer, beaten path, with fewer obstacles along the way. It leads straight to your destination, but the view is anything but spectacular. The other is a more difficult, longer route but with the most amazing sights you'll ever see and the possibility of the most exciting journey you'll ever go through. Which route would you take?

I'd take the second route without hesitation.

I'd take the riskier and more exciting route because that is the only way to live life to the fullest. Life is too short to be wasted on dull, uneventful moments. It might be more dangerous and you might be slowed down by more obstacles, but then, the obstacles are what make victory sweeter in the end. When you finally reach your destination, your feeling of fulfillment could never be equaled.

I took the biggest risk of my life when I moved thousand of miles away from home to a different, unfamiliar place where I didn't know anybody and wasn't sure if I'd make it. I had a succesful job in my country, a family who loves me, a guy who adores me and a network of wonderful friends. But I left everything behind to pursue my dream of going to graduate school and starting an independent life. It was absolutely tough in the beginning. I spent nights crying of homesickness, but the fighter in me decided to hang on. As a result, I got my graduate degree, found an even greater job and met the true man of my dreams. I've never felt happier and more fulfilled.

And I'd rather take the risks than live the rest of my life asking questions of what if? Life is full of crossroads that require you to make decisions. You might make the wrong ones and fail, but the more important thing is, you took the risk. In truth, the biggest regrets in our lives are the risks we didn't take. Don't be a person who has to look back and wonder what they would have been or could have had. Move out of your comfort zone. There are only a few things in this world that can never be retrieved, and one of them is neglected opportunities.

The thing is, life is a one way street. No matter how many detours you take, none of them leads back. So take the more exciting road because you'll never pass that way again. And never allow failure to hinder you from reaching your destination. If on the way, you trip, just get up and move on. Move on stronger and wiser.

Don't allow life to be simply a journey, make it an adventure!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Say Hello...

... to a married woman!

Yes, I did get married at the courthouse on St. Patrick's Day. The ceremony was short... it was over in 15 minutes! It was just the two of us that day, but we're planning to have a small reception with Husband's family sometime during the summer. Anyway, for our mini-honeymoon, we went to Chicago, and had a wonderful time.

People had been asking me if I felt different after getting married.

Honestly?... I don't feel any different!

I don't know if it's because I don't exactly have my big wedding yet or if there's really no difference. Sometimes, I think movies and fairy tales make too much of weddings and marriages, but in reality it's not as idealistic or as dreamy as it seems. Really... how am I supposed to feel? I knew I already love my husband very much before I married him. I don't know if it's possible to love him any more than I already do. The only difference that I know of and feel now, is that I see him everyday. I wake up every morning beside him and go home to him every night. And I do agree... that is a wondeful feeling! I guess you can say that getting married gives you more stability and a feeling of security. .. The thought that whatever happens, your spouse would be there to love and support you. But the thing is, I've always felt that way with my husband ever since I've known him. Getting married basically, just makes it official.

But I can say that I am absolutely happy. I still need to get used to calling him my husband and being referred to as his wife, but I'm getting there. He's been a great husband so far. Two days ago, he came home early and had dinner ready for me. And yesterday, he went to the grocery store and bought things he knew I would like, as well as gave me a very sweet card!

Well, if this is what married life's like, I definitely can get used to it!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

First Ticket

I'm temporarily breaking my hibernation to post a short rant.

A cop gave me my first ticket yesterday. Yes, my very first. I'm usually a law-abiding citizen. ;-)

And no, it's not for speeding!

It's for talking on the phone while driving!!! Yes, seriously! How the heck am I supposed to know that I was driving by one of the very few cities in Ohio that imposes the 'no talking while driving' law? Okay, I know, I know! With or without law, I shouldn't be doing that in the first place, so I guess that should teach me two lessons.

(1) Don't talk while driving!
(2) Pay attention to road signs (big or small)!

And you know what the irony is? I was actually at the store thinking of buying a Bluetooth last weekend (you know, that thing you use on your ear that makes other people feel stupid thinking you're talking to them and then realizing you're not?), but decided to put it off and save money for our Chicago trip. Well, I'm definitely spending money to buy one now, in addition to paying a $105 fee! Ugh!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Busy Life

I haven't been posting as much as I usually to do. And I apologize.

March is proving to be such a busy month for me. First of all, I'm getting married at the courthouse in 10 days. Yes, 10 days! On St. Patricks day! Fiance and I went to get our marriage license last week and scheduled our wedding. Turned out that was the only day during the week we wanted, that the courthouse would perform weddings. So we decided we might as well set it that day. Kinda unromantic I know, but I don't consider that my real wedding (the real one's on January, 2010) so it's not a big deal for me. (Read this and this for my wedding plans.)

Secondly, I'm moving to Fiance's apartment in a few weeks. And do you know how much pain packing is? Now I understand why there's such a thing as Movers. They make life easy! But we gotta save money to buy a house so I had no choice but to move my lazy butt and do it myself.

Third, I have to go to Chicago in a few days to do some lab testing for my job. Fiance decided to tag along so we'll be spending next weekend in that beautiful place.

And did I tell you that our company reorganized everybody's offices and cubicles? Now my cube is in front of my boss' office and directly in his line of sight! You know what that means, don't you? No more blogging on workdays for me! :-)

I do promise however, that I'll try my very best to post from time to time and read all your wonderful blogs.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Acceptance


Acceptance. Theoretically, it seems so easy, but in reality, it's one of the hardest thing to do in life. How do you accept and take the pain when your heart gets broken, the sorrow when a family member dies or the bitter taste of defeat? It's human nature to feel these emotions! Emotions brought about by things we have no control of, things we feel completely powerless about... but things we desperately wish would never happen to us.

I struggled so hard with acceptance when I was a kid. I've always been involved in all sorts of competitions - academic or otherwise. But as with all competitions, it's either you win or you lose. When you win, of course, acceptance is easy! But when you lose, it's a different story. Your mind goes through all the things you did and try to analyze what you did wrong. I was a competitive kid, and it took me a while to stop beating myself up and accept that I won't win all battles. All I can do is be more prepared the next time and do better.

Fast forward to the present. I learned to be more accepting though the course of years. I've learned that not everthing in life goes according to my plans or what I want, and was able to accept the outcome wholeheartedly. The key is just looking at the brighter side and accepting that it's just part of life. And believing there's a reason why it happened that way. I do admit that there are times when I still struggle with acceptance. But I did come to grips and accept facts like...

... I can't sing for the life of me.
... I would only grow to be 5'2 tall, and not an inch taller.
... you might be a popular girl in school but the boy you like might still not like you.
... awkwardness is part of growing up.
... nothing in life comes easy. You have to study and work hard to achieve your dreams.
... you'll come across some b*tchy and mean people once in a while.
... you'll go through a series of heartbreaks before you find Mr. Right.
... there's no such thing as a Perfect Man.
... you can't be perfect either.
... the people you love won't always be around ( so you have to tell them how much you love them while they're still here).
... you won't always have everything you want.
... you can't avoid embarassing situations.
... pain and heartaches make you stronger. No pain, no gain.

I believe that acceptance is a state of mind. It is a choice. A choice that is hard to make but with willpower, is achievable. If not, I guess we can just always pray...

"God, give me the serenity to accept the things I can not change..."

My bloggy friends, what have you learned to accept over the years?

Monday, February 23, 2009

A Tribute to Atom

Before you decide to skip this post, let me assure you that I'm not going to be geeky and discuss molecules and atoms. Atom is the name of my beautiful, tabby cat. (Although, come to think of it, who else but a geek would name her cat Atom? But.... on my defense, I named him after my gorgeous college 'crush' who apparently has geeky parents!)


This weekend I'm giving up Atom to a friend. I'm letting him go with a real heavy heart.

I still remember the first time I saw him. It was four years ago in an animal shelter close to where I live. The decision to go there and adopt a cat was an impulse. An impulse born out of a childish vengeance. A vengeance on a cheater ex-boyfriend who was severely allergic to cats. It was my immature way of letting him know he's never welcome in my apartment ever again, and a desperate reminder to myself that I won't be foolish as to let him weaken my resolve not to let him in my life again (since I really don't wanna be sued if I let him stay in my apartment and he ends up in a hospital :-) ) . Crazy, I know, but when you're high on emotions and pent-up anger, you'd do crazy things. Don't get me wrong, I really love cats but I never thought I'd have the time to take care of one - as graduate school keep me busy enough! But I needed a reason for the Ex to stop pestering me. And living in my apartment heartbroken and lonely, I needed any breathing thing to keep me company. Roommates cause complications so I did the next best thing... get a cat.


Atom was a quiet cat when I met him. Having lived inside a cage for several months, he wasn't used to people. He wouldn't allow me to touch him, would hide in the cabinet and would only come out in the middle of the night when I'm sleeping. I practiced extreme patience, and little by little, he started warming up to me, until he finally fell in love with me. Now, four years later, he'd wait by the door when he hears my keys and wouldn't get off my lap even when I try to force him. We've been through a lot together. I took him with me when I moved to Pennsylvania after graduate school, and again when I moved back to Ohio.

But unfortunately, karma does exist. Who would have thought that years later I would again fall in love with another guy who's also allergic to cats? Once again I'm heartbroken, because now, I've got to give up my beloved cat who's been with me through most of my life here in US! (Ah, the things we do for love!) I used to tease Fiance, ' Hhmm... Atom or Fiance? Tough decision, huh?'

Well, at least I'm giving Atom to a friend. That way I can take him back in case, you know... (I'm just kidding!)

Anyway, to cheer me up, Fiance promised to get me a dog when we buy our house. :-)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dear Tech Support

A co-worker sent this to me this morning. Thought I'd share it with you to brighten your day, especially the people who put up with my rants yesterday. Thanks guys!

Dear Tech Support,

Last year I upgraded from Boyfriend 5.0 to Husband 1.0 and noticed a distinct slow down in overall system performance, particularly in the flower and jewellery applications, which operated flawlessly under Boyfriend 5.0.

In addition, Husband 1.0 uninstalled many other valuable programs, such as Romance 9.5 and Personal Attention 6.5, and then installed undesirable programs such as
CNN 5.0, CRICKET 3.0 and POLITICS 4.1.

Conversation 8.0 no longer runs, and Housecleaning 2.6 simply crashes the system.

Please note that I have tried running Nagging 5.3 to fix these problems, but to no avail.

What can I do?

Signed,
Desperate


DEAR DESPERATE,

First, keep in mind, Boyfriend 5.0 is an Entertainment Package, while Husband 1.0 is an operating system. Please enter command: ithoughtyoulovedme.html and try to download Tears 6.2 and do not forget to install the Guilt 3.0 update.

If that application works as designed, Husband1.0 should then automatically run the applications Jewellery 2.0 and Flowers 3.5. However, remember, overuse of the above application can cause Husband 1.0 to default to Grumpy Silence 2.5, Happy Hour 7.0 or Beer 6.1. Please note that Beer 6.1 is a very bad program that will download the Farting and Snoring Loudly Beta.

Whatever you do, DO NOT under any circumstances install Mother-In-Law 1.0 (it runs a virus in the background that will eventually seize control of all your system resources.)

In addition, please do not attempt to reinstall the Boyfriend 5.0 program. These are unsupported applications and will crash Husband 1.0.

In summary, Husband 1.0 is a great program, but it does have limited memory and cannot learn new applications quickly. You might consider buying additional software to improve memory and performance.

We recommend:
Cooking 3.0
and Hot Lingerie 7.7.

Good Luck !
Tech Support

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Where is the Love?

I grew up having a strong faith in humanity. I believe in the inherent good side of people, until they prove me otherwise. My family had been through a lot when I was young, yet I continued to stick with my belief for several years.

Lately however, some people are starting to make me question my wholehearted faith in mankind. I don't know if it was just me growing old, losing my naivety and facing reality, but it seems as though I'm meeting a number of people who are showing their not-so-angelic sides.

Here are examples of people that get to me...

Gossipers. I've come to realize that people love to gossip. It doesn't matter what their nationalities or genders are (believe me, men love to gossip as much as, if not more than, women), people love talking about other people. I would say in some instances, it's okay... such as when you're discussing a concern about a friend or a family member (though I won't really call that gossip!). But if you're doing it out of spite or envy, please stop. Nothing is more hurtful than gossips that were spread just to destroy a reputation. And a word of advice to gossipers who don't really mean harm but just do it for lack of better things to do: before you start speading the "news" aka. gossips, please make sure you get your stories straight. You might think it's harmless but gossips that were based on wrong assumptions can hurt other people. Better yet, just get a life and mind your own darn business!

Liars/Hypocrites. I used to know an old lady who goes to church every Sunday and prays with tears in her eyes. Then, she goes out to the real world, abuse her maid and do business illegaly. Okay lady, do you honestly believe you'll be welcomed in heaven?

Then, there was a Catholic priest in my old town who preaches so beautifully. Outside of church however, he gambles, drinks and flirts with a lot of women. What the..??!!!

Cheaters. This is one of the worst offenses in my relationship book. To me, it's unforgivable and completely undeserving of a second chance. I had the misfortune to fall in love with one once, and it left a bitter taste in my mouth that took several years to get rid of. So to cheaters out there, why can't you just have the decency to break up with whoever you're with before dilly-dallying with someone else? The pain of betrayal is a hundred times worse than the pain of knowing the truth.

Know It All's. I've got news for you, Mr./Ms 'Perfect': there's no such thing as a perfect person and you can't possibly know everything in this world! Please be respectful of other people's opinions because it's not just yours that matters. People are all equal and you're no better than anybody. Treat others as equals. However smart you think you are, you can't be right all the time. In truth, the more open-minded you are, the smarter you get. Just saying!

Sorry, if I'm being bitchy today. I know I'm not perfect either and I'm trying not to be judgemental, but I do need to vent my frustrations with some people.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Let's Talk About Love

In light of it being so close to Valentine's Day, I decided to join the bandwagon and talk about love. I actually had written a different (and a little sad) post but decided not to publish it right now, and instead re-publish the one I wrote a while back (with some minor changes), which many of you probably haven't seen yet.

I can’t help but smile whenever I see an old couple walking hand in hand.

Call me a hopeless romantic, but in this uncertain world where unstable relationships abound and break-ups are everyday occurrences, seeing an old, loving couple holding hands gives me hope. Hope that not all relationships are as fragile as they seem to be nowadays. Hope that some people can love each other forever and relationships can last a lifetime. Hope that even though relationships take hard work, love conquers all. And hope that I would be one of those few who have that one-of-a-kind LOVE that will stand the test of time.

I fell in love for the first time when I was 24 (I was a late bloomer. I dated before that, I just never fell in love). So in love (or so I thought, but it might just the novelty of first love) that when my relationship ended in betrayal of trust, I was devastated. I felt so hurt and betrayed that even after I started dating other guys, I found it hard to fall again. I was too scared of getting hurt that I kept every guy I dated at arm’s length. I became a serial dater who was too much of a coward to commit. At the first signs of complication, I’d break it off and ran away. In the midst of it all however, there was one guy who patiently guided me out of my shell and taught me to love and trust again. But love has a twisted sense of humor. Just as I was falling in love, life circumstances forced us to let go of the relationship turning me back into the slightly jaded woman I once were.

Then I met Fiance. I don’t know how or why but for the first time in my life, I felt that I could just throw caution in the wind and let loose. As cheesy as it sounds, I felt that I could fall and he’d catch me. The first time I met him, I knew it was going to be different. Don’t ask me why, I just knew and felt it. So I threw caution in the wind, let loose and fell in love. I never had any regrets. It was everything I hoped for. It made me realize that what I felt before him were puppy love(s). Our relationship had been mostly happiness. I won’t call it perfect, but it’s darn well near one. Although there are times when my ‘trust issues’ would resurface, he reassures me so well it becomes impossible not to have faith in our love. We do have petty arguments from time to time, but they never lasted more that 15 minutes. He’s one of the most wonderful guys I’ve ever known. I’ve never felt so loved and cared for. I don’t have a formula for creating a successful relationship, but I know that there would be that one person who makes you feel like you two fit each other like two peas in a pod, and things between you just feel right. That’s how I feel with Fiance.

A month from now, we’ll be taking the plunge into matrimonial bliss. I look forward to it without an ounce of fear (okay, maybe a little!), only with hope…

...hope that several years from now, we would be that old loving couple still walking hand in hand...

Monday, February 9, 2009

30

Did you know that a kiss uses more than 30 facial muscles in humans, and requires significant muscle coordination? (No wonder some people are bad kissers!)

Did you know that a pig's orgasm can last for 30 minutes? (Lucky bas#t%r&s!)

Did you know that if an average man never trimmed his beard, it would grow to nearly 30 feet long in his lifetime? (I know one thing for sure... I wouldn't be dating somebody who'd agree to do this experiment!)

Did you know that a snail takes over 30 hours to crawl in one mile? (I wouldn't be surprised!)

Did you know that the oldest dog documented (an Australian cattle dog named Bluey) lived for nearly 30 years before he was finally put to sleep?

Did you know that more than 30% of people who come to your home parties snoop in your medicine cabinet? ( I'm part of the remaining 70%... at least most of the time!)

Did you know that a 30-second Superbowl commercial costs around $3 million dollars?

And finally...

Did you know that people say life begins at 30, so on the 30th of June this year, my life 'officially begins'? ;-)

Friday, February 6, 2009

The Unspoken Rules of Friendship

Imagine yourself stranded on an island, like Tom Hanks in the movie Castaway, with no one to talk to and interact with. You might welcome the peace and serenity for a few days, but after a week of solitary existence, I'm sure you'll start to go crazy with loneliness and boredom!

As the old adage goes, no man is an island. You need someone to share your joys with, someone to lean on and care for, and someone to talk to. That someone doesn't need to be a person to fall in love with, just someone you can be friends with.

In my twenty nine years of existence in this world, I feel fortunate to have found friends who gave meaning to the real definition of the word. They were friends who acted as my cheering squad during competitions and after heartbreaks, my so-called 'accomplices in crimes', my psychologists who analyzes every aspect of my problems, and my supreme court who judges dates and potential boyfriends.

In short, they were friends who made my life easier and happier.

Although I always have lots of male friends, my friendships with women are the ones that stood the test of time. Guys aren't always great at keeping in touch, and friendship with men sometimes causes complications... complications like him falling for you or vice versa, having a jealous boyfriend who can't stand the thought of you being so close to a male friend, or him having a jealous girlfriend who can't stand the thought of you. That's not to say however, that I don't have long-lasting male friends. I do. Most guys are wonderful friends and I love hearing their perspectives on things.

Still, women understand and relate to each other better, and so make truly amazing friends! That doesn't mean though, that women friendships are always smooth sailing. I think one of the main ingredients in having successful ones is following some sort of unwritten girl laws.

These are the top five rules my girlfriends and I used to live by (now that we're all older and miles away from each other, the major rule just seems to be ... always keep in touch!). Feel free to add yours.

1. Be there when she needs you. Oftentimes, a girl friend just needs someone who will listen or a shoulder to cry on, so be one.

2. Accept her for everything she is. A true friendship is one where you should feel most comfortable being your real self.

3. Never compete or fight over a guy. It's not worth it. Boyfriends come and go, but true friends stick together though the end of time. (And that brings me to not neglecting your friends the minute you found a boyfriend!)

4. Never date your friend's ex. He might be an ex, but he's definitely off limits. How would you feel if your friend who knows most of the gory details of your past relationship dates the guy who's the main character of those stories? (Some people might not agree with me on this, but trust me, it's better!)

5. Be honest. I'm always an advocate of honesty, because I'd rather get hurt knowing the truth than feel like a fool later for being lied to. That basically includes telling me if you saw my boyfriend with another woman or if you caught him lying to me!

Friends are one of the greatest things in this world. As Edna Buchanan quoted, 'friends are family that WE CHOOSE for ourselves.' Enough said!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Taking Technology Too Far

I have a confession to make... I have a love affair with my GPS! I've got a poor sense of direction and I get lost a lot, and so developed an undying love and devotion towards it.

But even if I hate being lost, it doesn't mean I always love to be found.

I was surfing the net last night when I saw an article in CNN about Google's new technology software. The downloadable application (called Latitude) allows cellphone users to share their whereabouts to friends and relatives, and let people track them anytime.

I don't know about you, but I'm not warming up to this idea at all. Sure, I can see its use for your grade school kids and suspected cheater husbands, but I don't see the point of tracking your friends or families' every single move! As much as I love hanging out with my friends and treasure moments with my fiance, I also love alone time. My 'me' time. Away from people, and enjoying privacy on my own. Now, why would I wanna ruin that by downloading a software on my phone that allows them to find me at times I don't wanna be found? Won't it be as easy to just tell people where I am when they call me? Actually, the beauty of cellular phones is that it gives you an option not to answer when you don't feel like it and don't wanna be disturbed. Why ruin it?

As someone who's in the field of science and technology, I find most technological advances utterly fascinating. There are times, however, when I have to say, this is taking it too far.

Lovely people, what's your take on this?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Wedding Plans in Pictures

I know it's long been overdue, so today, I'm finally letting everybody take a peek at my wedding plans!!!



There's nothing I want more than to get married at the beach during sunset ...



wearing my dream dress...


then, dance and party the whole night long....


feasting on this cake (is it too obvious I love everything ocean inspired?)....



and tossing this bridal bouquet at the end of the night...



Then the next day, go off to the honeymoon of my dreams...

enjoying a wonderful, sunny life at White Beach, Boracay...



and exploring Palawan Underground River...


with my gorgeous new husband!

Here's hoping things turn out according to plans!


Monday, February 2, 2009

Of Rejection and Breaking Up

A friend of mine called me the other day, asking for advice on how to break up with her boyfriend. Things between them are not working out the way she wanted, and she feels that she's not in love with him anymore. The guy however, is the ultimate definition of Mr. Nice and so she feels awful about breaking his heart.

I'm not a relationship guru, but my dating history has some of my friends teasingly dubbing me as the 'break-up expert'. After my first disastrous relationship, I developed a phobia of commitment, and so became a serial dater who run away at the slightest signs of complications. I went through a number of short-term relationships for a few years, until I met Fiance. Now, I'm making the ultimate form of commitment... marriage.

I'd admit that I do have some experiences, but even so, I don't think I've ever learned how to break up or reject a guy's advances without hurting his feelings. You can be brutally honest, or you can break it gently and lie about the real reason of why you don't wanna be with him, but either way, you still hurt him - his feelings or his pride.

Because the bottom line is... rejection sucks!

What I have learned though, is that guys take it in different ways.

There are guys who are man enough to accept your decision graciously without causing a scene or making a big deal out of it. They accept that rejection is a part of life, or that the two of you are not suited for each other (they're probably on the same page as you, you just beat them to it), and then move on with their lives.

There are guys however, who can't take rejection gracefully. Whenever that happens, it only strengthens my conviction that I was right in breaking up! I once dated a guy who, afer we broke up, started speading rumors on how crazy I was in bed, when in reality I never even slept with him! And then there was this guy who deleted me as his Facebook friend because I didn't wanna go out with him!

Over the course of years, I've come to the conclusion that it's usually better to take the honest road when breaking up with or saying No to somebody. It's better to say that you don't feel a connection between the two of you or other ACTUAL reasons why you had to break up, rather than go though the cliches of break-up lines made for the purpose of sparing his feelings. Trust me, guys can actually see through the 'it's not you, it's me' or the 'I don't think I'm ready to be in a relationship right now' lies (although in my case, those lines are probably true at that time)! Just be honest. A decent and confident man will respect you more for it.

Actually, I've learned my lesson about lying the hard way when, on a grocery store, I told a guy that I was new in town and didn't have a phone when he asked me for my number. God must have been watching and shaking his head because the moment I said that, my phone started ringing! (Talk about awkward!). I was trying to spare the guy's feelings but I guess, honesty is usually the best policy! (Or maybe I should have used a different excuse ;-) )

Rejection sucks, but it IS a part of life (for both men and women, and in relationship or other aspect of life!). As Bo Bennet said, 'rejection is nothing more than a necessary step in the pursuit of success.'