Wednesday, 30 July 2014

My Wedding Gift

S is not perfect. I believe one of his greatest flaws is PRIDE, which incidentally is also one of the 7 capital sins.

But what he lacks in humility, he makes up for in generosity. S matches my dad in terms of his capacity to give.

A couple of weeks ago, he stopped infront of 7/11 to buy food for an old homeless lady. I told him that the lady is a lunatic and that I have seen her create havoc in the stores. He responded by saying that a person's state of mind should not stop us from giving food to the hungry.

I was embarrassed with my initial comment.

Most of the time, I talk about what I want or what are my dreams to the point that I seldom publicly share what I have lest people will say I'm bragging.

Allow me to share a recent gift from my husband. He gave his to me on our wedding day so this gift is extra special.

Pasensya na if I sound like I am bragging.  

I just want to show the world how good he is. He complains that I mostly write vendettas and sarcastic remarks about the world around me. He feels unappreciated hence this post. 

I suppose I really don't need a lot  words to describe this beautiful set of diamond earrings. I usually don't DESIRE jewelries and I don't fancy big and dangling earrings either.  I have always thought that i don't have the personality to wear something young and fun. Maybe he saw something I didn't.

He actually designed this set himself. His mom's jeweler then made his design.  The earrings came with a very long letter which I never successfully read out loud infront of the camera because I started crying after a few lines.

S' capacity to give makes me ashamed of my never ending discontent with my life. You see, before deciding to come home, I was a citizen of the world. I always wanted to live in a faraway land.  I always dreamt of being great and I think I still do. And yet,the stress also killed me.

It makes S very sad that I rarely say I dream of being a mother or a good wife.  Sometimes I wonder, if I just don't have what it takes.

But like what Mico said on his GBF speech, "L always start out unsure and scared but ends up teaching others how to do it."

For now, I can't help but drool over this beautiful set of jewelry.  I now love dangling earrings but I still hate COACH BAGS. 

Still on Pause,


Tuesday, 29 July 2014

My Wedding Cakes

I don't  like the idea of styrofoam cakes.

I also don't like cakes that are just made to look taller and bigger. I guess I just don't like things that appear deceiving.  I'd be happier with a champagne fountain or a small piece of suman!

For one thing, I have a soft spot for desserts. 

If it's mostly styro....perhaps we should start calling it the "wedding monument" or we can be politically correct and call it "wedding installation art".  

And so when I briefed Penk Ching, I requested for all my cakes to be edible.

Since Penk has been studying painting in Ateneo, I asked for painted cakes. And she did exactly that. 

Penk hand painted the cakes... all 7 of them!

Real cakes are heavy and they can't go really tall. So to have a lot of cakes, my brother suggested we have the satellite execution. CLEVER!

 I'd have to say that this execution is very rarely done in our country because not everyone has a wish to die by diabetes.

Bizu did this gorgeous arrangement by the way. They provided all the other sweets, which I later gave to good friends.

When I first saw the set up of the wedding venue, I was totally floored! Breath-taking set up by Lawrence.

But to be honest, when I saw the cakes, my heart sank a bit because the 3 layer should've been 3D. Instead it was just the small satellite cake on the left that had that effect.

No one actually noticed and everyone loved the cakes but I was just your neighborhood OC bride. I guess there is a downside to being too involved. The wedding was like my baby. 

By the end of the night and after countless glasses of wine, I actually looooveed the cakes and started giving them away.

Two cakes even ended up in ILOILO! One went to the parents of my classmate who were extremely grateful that they had a piece of my weddding. 

The following day, I started looking for the cakes! Hahaha! M brought one to my house and we enjoyed it with a bottle of wine.

The cake was so good. It was lemon and butter.  My brother was impressed that Chef Penk used the best ingredients. 

We are still devouring the walnut cakes. M suggested that we heat it up in the microwave and serve with ice cream. DIVINE!!!!!

I regret giving away the red velvet. I only had a small bite during the cake slicing bit. 

But maybe it's for my own good.

Still On Pause,


Monday, 28 July 2014

Sang Ke Tseng

The good thing about living away from my family is SILENCE. 

The bad thing is that they can't always be there when I need them.

Like during my SANG KE TSENG, which fell 2 days earlier than their arrival. 

Thankfully, I have a handful of friends who stood on their behalf.

The procession of the dowry started with a chant, which was recited by my AUSTRALIAN bridesmaid who couldn't speak a word of Chinese to save her life.

But M is the sister of the TALENTED MR. RIPLEY so within a few minutes she learned the chant and marched into the house shouting very loudly.

Her Chinese was so good that I swear my in-laws looked at me wondering how this Aussie can speak mandarin better than me.

Then the lanterns were brought in. Followed by the mirror and the potty and the jewelries from my side.

Josette had the highest honors of parading the arenolas.

My maid of honor rushed to the scene all the way from the airport. 

Once they were all inside, they started arranging my matrimonial bed. The rule is simple, "No space left empty". 

I didn't have them put the appliances on the bed because that's crazy. 

After they completed their tasks, my MIL gave them red packets. 

It was a funny and beautiful day that was later ruined by torrential rains!

A couple of days after that more stuff arrived from HK.   The Buddha with kids, The dragon and phoenix and the Fu Lu Shou figurines were all part of the dowry. Habol nalang. Di nakasama sa parade!

Still on Pause,


Sunday, 27 July 2014

Thoughts of a Newly Married Girl

Currently on my pre-honeymoon trip.

I'm sure you haven't heard of such a thing. It's just a trip that's  not really romantic. It's more adventurous.

Come to think of it, we seem to be taking this type of trip ALL THE TIME.  Hahaha!

While on this trip,I can't help but research on recipes that I'll cook for S. I promised him that I will give this "model housewife" thing a couple of months.

If I get a bad rating, I'll go back to what I know and do best: CORPORATE LIFE. 

One of the things noted in my job description is COOKING. S hated the first dish I cooked, LASWA, an Ilonggo staple that doesn't require any skill. 

So, to redeem myself, I'm researching on how to cook spicy eggplant.

Sorry this is such a bad post. Obviously we are very distracted.

Still On Pause,


Monday, 21 July 2014

Day 154: Wedding Eve

On the eve of my wedding, I took a bath in fruit infused water. This symbolizes the washing away of my impurities.

Then I put on my new pajama set and new underwear. Everything must be new. Even the toothbrush I used.

A few minutes later, my parents came inside the room for my hair combing ritual. 

A couple of months ago, I remember mocking this ritual in my posts. I thought it was funny na may suyod pa. Wala naman akong KUTO! 

But that night, it was dark and there were only 2 lighted candles. The room was just filled with emotions.

As my dad combed my hair and my mom recited the chant, I started crying.

My mom asked me why. 

I said, " This wedding is my passage to adulthood. After this, I will have no more excuses. After this I am officially a grown up and you will grow old too. Who will I run to when you are no longer around?"

My dad took out the bible and read a verse from Ephesians. Then he said,

"When we are no longer around, you can run to HIM. He will always be there for you."

 A lot of Fil-Chis do not know why we do certain traditions. They do without understanding. 

I planned my ke tseng with the guidance of my Singaporean bridesmaid, Alvina and my aunt in HK. Every tradition, every item has a meaning and a corresponding functionality.

These traditions, while they seem funny on paper, they are rich in emotions during actual execution. They allow us to bond with our families and our friends.

I don't regret quitting my job to prepare for My Big Fat Chinese wedding. 

It allowed me to follow traditions, respect the almanac and develop appreciation for being Chinese.

I may not be able to speak fookien fluently but my heart understands the culture better that most of those who have mastered the language.

Still on Pause,


Sunday, 13 July 2014

DAY 146: Lenox Launch in Rustan's

Last night I was watching reruns of Sex and the City and in one episode Charlotte chose a really expensive china set. 

I don't quite understand this American tradition of buying plates and putting them in a display cabinet.

For a Chinese bride, a new set of dinnerware is part of her dowry.  This item symbolizes the welcoming of new members into her future family. 

Hmmm... I guess this is base on the principle of "If you desire it, claim it". 

A couple of weeks ago, we were invited to the launch of LENOX. It was as if the universe was tempting me to choose my own china pattern. Perhaps, the universe could feel that I am not too happy with my current  plates. 

Lenox is America's number 1 makers of Fine and Casual china. They even have a line from one of my famous designers, KATE SPADE.

More to this..

Sunday, 6 July 2014


The Bed Setting Ceremony is a Chinese Tradition that happens before the wedding day.
The ceremony is done to ensure prosperity and fertility.  It is also symbolic of the groom's parents welcoming the bride into their home  because traditionally the bride moves in with the groom and his family.

This ceremony must happen on a pre-determined auspicious date or the day before the wedding. So, both S and his mom needed to go to a temple in Binondo to get the dates for both the bed setting and the Sang Ke Tseng.

Ideally, my dowry should have been displayed in my home first. Then my family would deliver the effects to my new home. The same items that would've  been delivered would  be used for my bed setting.

Unfortunately, my family is in another island, we had to make a lot of adjustments but it's okay! The most important thing is that all key traditions are done on their respective auspicious dates.

The day started with S and family putting "yenchi" on the corners bed frame. Then S' dad put the mattress.

S' mom put on the HAPPY COUPLE BED SHEET ( other options: Dragon and Phoenix and Double Happiness). The sheets came all the way from Singapore, thanks to Prim. This act of my MIL is symbolic of her welcoming me into the family.  In turn, I will later offer my MIL a pair of shoes and stockings as a sign of respect.

The seeds were placed on the bed to wish for sons.The sweets were placed to wish us a sweet and 
happy life.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Day 135: What Would You Change?

Ever since I closed my livejournal and moved to blogger, I started reading beautifully written and multi-faceted blogs.

One of the blogs I religiously read is S met the author, Patty, together with the other SOMOMS when he shared his then new brand with them over lunch. He told me that Patty is a mom, a former corporate warrior like me and  breast cancer survivor, who radiates an aura of optimism.

Now, I've never met Patty but judging from her blog, S gave a pretty accurate description.

A couple of days ago, she posted WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE? and it got me thinking...

If there was something about you, a quality which you don’t really admire in yourself … what would it be? What would you change

My first answer is definitely my Temper.

I used to have a really bad temper when I was still working. I was very perky and bubbly at work and I bottled up all my frustrations and disappointments. The moment I got into the car and I let my guard down, a small push in the wrong direction could  really set me off.

When I panicked, I used to react by getting mad and by blaming S.

Once I have calmed down, I would apologize but I felt really bad for losing it to begin with.

As a type A person, I am very organized and I get impatient and agitated  if things don't go as planned.

To a large extent, S is also like me but he handles pressure so much better.  Maybe it's true that men can compartmentalized issues better than women.

Without the stress from work, S noticed that I am more relaxed and more patient with him and with the things around me.

Yoga helped a lot too. Breathing the right way actually clears my head. S jokes that my head is now empty! Yoga also forced me to be patient with myself because it's really frustrating that I can't reach my own toes. If I'm not patient with myself, I will surely walk out of the class!

Avoiding the news also helped...hahaha! Everytime I see Bong and Jinggoy, I literally get chest pains.

I also started choosing who to talk to. I avoid loud and/or shallow people because they trigger my impatience.

I'm afraid though that while my patience levels have improved, it's still not to the levels that I want it to be.

I have very low tolerance for people with low self awareness. I don't like people who lack humility and people who say things they should keep to themselves.  They make me lose my center. I end up snapping (ie angry again) and saying things that I soon regret.

But I continue working on my patience still...

Lastly,  I started praying the right way again.  I kneel down, close my eyes and remember all my blessings for that day. Praying helped me rant less and appreciate more.

I'm so much happier now that I have simplified my life. I still miss my work, my income and the people in the office but life is all about choices.


Still on Pause,


Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Day 134: A Yoga Milestone

Today, I reached my toes for the first time in my life.

It just happened naturally...without any effort

3 weeks ago, I had to use a strap...

I'm inspired to do more!