Friday, June 27, 2008

Any Old Excuse to Wear a Costume :)

Speaking of costumes, my sister and I have always been interested in throwing a medieval-themed party or in attending a Renaissance Fair (we have yet to find one here and if we become desperate, we’ll simply hold one ourselves.). We both are history buffs and are always interested in the way of life from different eras. That could be our theme next October. I’m more inclined towards the Renaissance, but the Middle Ages has that element of darkness, of course, and it would be interesting to come as a toothless serf, lol. Anyway, this is an unofficial missive to our friends to start hunting down Renaissance or Medieval costumes for Halloween. To point you in the correct direction, has a wide selection of costumes for these particular themes. Their catalog includes authentic-looking peasant, royalty, monk, and knight attires.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Tip Junkie Is 1 Year Old

Tip Junkie is a creative blog I frequent and learn from A LOT. My idea rolodex is getting filled just from what I see on this blog. This week, to celebrate its first year anniversary, Tip Junkie is hosting a 20-day giveaway bash. You can click the button below to learn more about it.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rainy Days Are Cozier Spent in the Kitchen

... unless you spend it in bed, in which case there is no contest.
So I thought there has been a serious lack of cookies in our house lately. My mom's the resident baker extraordinaire, but since she has taken on the role of caregiver to my sister, I have had to step into her shoes.
So, I was going to make everything cookies, but I was leery of the chaos of flavors and textures in just one bite so I mellowed the recipe down to oatmeal, chocolate chips, and walnuts. Then I found that I was still on baking mode, so I made almond cookies. The recipe called for amaretto liqueur which I didn't have, so I had to settle for almond extract.
Husband loved the first, but issued a long pause before complimenting the second (you could almost hear "How do I phrase this without provoking her to hurl things at me?"). He said, "It's great except that it tastes like, uh, wine, like, uh, you know, almonds." I guess he was trying to say that he's not a big fan of almonds, which is NUTS (pun intended) because almonds rock. I love almonds. I especially love the essence of almonds - the combination of taste and smell...
Then it was time to take pics. I grabbed the camera and set it on automatic (the thing truly is wasted on me). I let Husband preview the shots I took and at one point he said, "Looks like poop."
I thought it was a comment on my photography skills in which case, he wasn't allowed to use expressions like that.
"Excuse me?" I snapped.
He showed me a shot of the cookies. "The cookies look like poop. Literally. It's because of your lighting." Oh, so it was a comment on the cookies themselves and, come to think of it, on my photography skills too. I'm not sure that was better, but at least it wasn't that expression. So, it was just a preamble to a photography lesson which I refused to learn. When it was time to take pictures of the almond cookies, I stubbornly set the camera on automatic again.
So, which of these two do you think I took?

A. B.

These two are both mine and yeah, the cookies are really that pale. It was that kind of recipe.;-p

Halloween Costumes Are Always Relevant... even in June :)

As I have said in the past, my sister and I are fond of throwing costume parties and while we usually do not need a reason for it, Halloween always gives a good one. Halloween costumes are always fun and you have to really put a lot of thought into your choice to get creative.

Last year, our theme was “Bedtime Tales” and people came as characters from popular fairy tales and other children’s books. My daughter Marguerite was adorable as your token pink and purple fairy. As cute as she was as a fairy, she, of course, has to be something else this year. There are no hard and fast rules, but unless you are on some fanatic streak, being the same thing on Halloween two years in a row is no fun. I was browsing though the Costume Cauldron’s online catalogue and saw this adorable Cat in the Hat costume.

I watched Seussical the Musical last December and loved it. As Marguerite is also currently being introduced to the genius of Dr. Seuss, I really think this would be a neat costume. On the other hand, she has this book called “It’s Dress Up Time”, which she regularly flips through and I can tell that she loves the clown costume in it (she always excitedly exclaims “Clown!” when we get to that page). I think this one from the catalogue would be perfect.

I, on the other hand, could get one of those genie costumes and just add a magic carpet that says "running on natural gas" because I'm obviously obsessed about the price of gas these days.

It’s never too early to think about your next Halloween costume and just checking out the online shop is inspiring. In fact, you do not need to wait for Halloween for an opportunity to wear a costume. Costumes are always fun no matter what time of the year. If you decide to get your shopping in early, the Costume Cauldron, by the way, has a secret HAUNTED HOUSE backdoor on the website that can get you a discount. To get to this backdoor, go halfway down the page to the part that says “Our Store now has over 8,000 masquerade items for you to choose from!” Carefully look for the brown comma and click on it when you spot it.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

We've Been Busy

Well, this weekend has been interesting. For one, it started early. Husband took Friday off because he finished whatever it was he had to finish for Microsoft until the wee hours of Friday morning. Then when he got home, our dear daughter woke up and would not let him sleep (Hi, Dad - tap tap - peek-a-boo! Hi, hello!...) so sleepless and exhausted, he made the decision to stay home and just get some sleep when he finally could. In the late afternoon, of course, he had car errands to run (this is the story of my life - my husband gets a day off work and my daughter and I have to compete with the car for his attention) so anyway, we just went with him. In between the many auto-related stops we made, we were able to squeeze in a visit to the two museums located at the ground floor of the Marikina DepEd building (right beside Teatro Marikina). First, we went around the miniature museum which had the most adorable collection of dollhouse furniture and other tiny thingies that made me gush nonstop while I was there. Everything was just so cute and made me want to start collecting miniatures as a hobby too. Some of the pieces were truly amazing - like one display was a miniature dental clinic. I mean, who would think to make a miniature dental clinic, right? Marguerite was more interested in running around than in appreciating the adorable pieces, of course. Afterwards, we moved on to the Belén Museum (Belén is Spanish for Bethlehem and it is what Filipinos have always called the Nativity scene or holiday crèche). It was also great because the place felt like Christmas and tiny twinkling lights are always festive, as you know. It didn't make me want to start collecting Belens but it did remind me that my friends and I won a belén-making contest in UP when we were in college and it made me want to make another one out of some bizarre material and donate it to the museum (providing they'd have it, of course, lol). Marguerite went a little wild in there. Restrictive bars and ropes did not mean anything to her, the little imp. Anyway, turned out she was just ready for a nap. Admission to each museum was Php30 per person. Here are some blurry pics from my cellphone.

We later found ourselves up in the mountains to watch the sunset. Husband took pictures of us inside and outside a restaurant (okay, it was mostly a bar, but the waiter twisted a balloon into a poodle(?) for Marguerite so I claim that that made it kid-friendly!) - you can see some of the city below in the background - but none of the sunset. The sky was mostly cloudy, but in the distant part of the horizon was a gorgeous play of colors. When we were driving back down to the valley, it was already dark with the sky mostly pitch black, but in the distance was an amazing shade of red. There was no hint of orange or yellow - just that red you usually associate with syrup or Kool Aid.

Then, yesterday, guess who finally got herself a haircut? I went a little mad and actually went to a trendy salon. That was a first. I usually go to some neighborhood parlor with beauticians stuck in the '80s. If I'm feeling extra-miserly, I just let my mother or my sister hack my hair. That's pretty much how it works with me. I grow my hair until it reaches my waist and then chop it all off, just long enough to tie in a ponytail. The last time I had cut my hair was in preparation for giving birth. Anyway, I usually don't let them style my hair after cutting since they want to blowdry it straight and that's not practical since I won't be bothering to do that myself (I don't blowdry, hence, a near-pneumonia incident when I was in the US some years back) and I want to know what the change looks like.
We met with my in-laws afterwards. Mike and Christine took Marguerite to the Arcade where she hit the jackpot in one of those games where you make the ball drop into the jackpot hole and you win lots of tickets, never enough tickets to win anything substantial (like the pretty rocking horse worth 10000 tickets), but enough to earn dinky plastic junk-in-the-making. We chose a slinky, a pack of glow-in-the-dark stick-on sheep, a toy mini cooper, and a joke (something that pops out of a candy container and makes a loud noise). In the pictures below, no, that's not Marguerite's nanny, but moi with my obviously high-fashion ensemble and new short hair in a ponytail. Compare it with the braid in the pic above.

Today there is a raging tempest outside and power went out around 3am whereupon I discovered that I could fan straight for hours without much notice when my child was involved. My arm didn't get tired at all. It was pretty cool because of the typhoon anyway. I decided to stay home because Husband and Marguerite were sleeping very heavily and slept until noon, in fact, the typhoon was really something fierce and the roads were probably dangerous with flying debris, plus the power was out so it would have been hard to get everybody ready (Sigh. Don't make me tell you what it takes. Just so you know, simply waking up Husband, which means making sure he stays awake, is a complete chore in itself that can take a couple of hours to accomplish. Sigh!). I thought of going by myself, but I didn't trust Husband to wake up when Marguerite did. Dad had thought not many people would be able to make it, but the turnout for the service was great.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

A Menace to Pop Culture

I just finished reading Homeschoolers Threaten Our Cultural Comfort and I want to force every single person who has questioned my decision to homeschool to read it. As you know, I'm very passionate about homeschooling and being a SAHM and when people who, for the most part, do not know what they are talking about dare to sneer or mock this choice, I seethe. I still have to learn how to chill and be all zen with regards to uninformed little digs about the lifestyle that I'm choosing to lead with my family. I suppose it's understandable since I have yet to prove myself (my innards just roared, "I do not have to prove anything to anybody!!!) and I'm not like those who have achieved success (but, come on, success in the eyes of the mainstream? Should that mean anything at all to me?) and can go "Ho, ho, ho!" at ignorant remarks because hey, they've got living proof that those people are wrong and even if they say nothing, the existential fact is that THOSE PEOPLE ARE WRONG AND REALLY DO NOT KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT!!! Okay, I have got to chill.:-D

Friday, June 20, 2008

Coins, Spanish, and Firsts

Uh-oh, we've got a coin bandit around here. That Marguerite, she's on a quest for coins and her policy is finders keepers. She sees our change lying around and she grabs them and puts them in the nearest of her numerous coin banks. I'm trying to check the habit, but the others are too busy being entertained. Sigh.
Here's another great site for learning the Spanish language. México para niños has everything from games and stories to recipes and music. The site is also very colorful and attractive to young children. It should be a lot of fun.
There's an interesting conversation going on in dNeero. It's about different firsts. You can check out my answers as well as join the conversation here.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Happy 100th Year to the Best University in the Country

UP is exactly 100 years old today. Give a "honk" in the comments section if you love UP.:)

Ticking off Memes from To-do List

Memes the word!

I'm a bit distrustful of this quiz since the way I answered the questions relating to personality definitely does not point to Marianne Dashwood, but since I chose Kate Winslet as the actress to portray me, voilà: I'm Marianne Dashwood. I don't think Husband and Colonel Brandon have anything in common at all. Did I end up with a Willoughby then? LOLZ What a question! No, he is nothing like Willoughby (later edited to add: except for hoTTness, :-D)!

I am Marianne Dashwood!

Take the Quiz here!


This is tricky. Answer with just ONE word.

Yourself: flaky ;-p
Your partner: saint
Your hair: impossible
Your Mother: selfless
Your Father: wise
Your Favorite Item: book
Your dream last night: forgettable
Your Favorite Drink: tea
Your Dream Car: hybrid
Your Dream Home: cottage
The Room You Are In: living
Your Ex: n/a
Your fear: war
Where you Want to be in Ten Years? (one word? are you kidding?) happy
Who you hung out with last night: Marguerite
What You're Not: trendy
Muffins: banana
One of Your Wish List Items: book
Time: tricky
The Last Thing You Did: write
What You Are Wearing: clothes
Your favorite weather: crispy
Your Favorite Book: mystery
Last thing you ate: Butterfingers
Your Life: good
Your mood: pensive
Your Best Friends: kindred
What are you thinking about right now: article
Your car: useful
What are you doing at the moment: writing
Your summer: nature
Relationship status: married
What is on your tv: nothing
What is the weather like: hot
When is the last time you laughed: today


Mention 6 unimportant things about yourself. (This is hard. I think everything about myself is important, heehee!)

1. I'm rereading Sue Grafton's "I is for Innocent".
2. I'm at this moment torn between eating something light or having tea.
3. I'll probably do both.
4. I can probably do without having hard candy ever again.
5. I listed no. 4 too quickly.
6. I didn't do this meme any justice.


List down 10 of your pet peeves.

1. Bullies
2. Bigots
3. Judgmental and usually very uninformed people
4. Meddlesome people
5. Clichés (sometimes guilty)
6. People with messianic complex
7. Affected behavior (myself included)
8. Rude customers
9. Closed/Narrow-minded people
10. Spammers and trollers

I'm tagging all of my readers. If you don't have a blog, choose a meme/s and post in Comments.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Toni's Birthday and Dedication Party

My goddaughter, Antonella, is now one year old. She had her party on Saturday at the Marikina Hotel. I made the conscious mistake of dressing Marguerite in a halter dress, hence the backward bib so her back wouldn't be exposed. She didn't pay attention to the clowns, but she had fun picking up and sweeping (with balloons) the confetti on the floor. Here are some pics.

Would you believe that I haven't been back to the dentist since getting pregnant (that would make it around two years now)? Anyway, yesterday I was suffering from a dull toothache (the first time since I was a small girl, I believe) during the worship service. As soon as I got home, I gave my teeth a vigorous brushing, ate lunch, then did some more vigorous brushing, made a paste out of ground cloves and water and voilà, my mouth was numb and the pain was gone. I'm definitely going to visit a dentist sometime this week just to get it out of the way. I don't really mind dentists, but I was hoping to never have to spend for their services again. My freelance gigs don't cover a dental plan.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

There Might Be Termite

Termites are weird creatures. Blech! One time, my Dad ripped open a wall and besides the outer shell, there really was no longer any wall left as those termites had feasted away inside. They’re creepy, creepy, creepy! Is there any way at all to beat them? Sure they’re small, but there are legions upon legions of them and they practically have the makings of a biblical plague. However, if you have to deal with them, then there’s really no use putting it off, right? Gosh, I swear, if we ever get around to building our own home, addressing possible bug problems is going to be right at the top of my list. Anyway, if you want to stop these blamed creatures from leaving trails of destruction inside and outside your home, you definitely have to look up termite control.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Ditto Melissa Wiley's Post and Something Else Homeschool-ish

I'm a fan of Melissa Wiley/Scott because of many things, but it all comes down to the fact that she's an inspiring person. One of the things I look to her for inspiration is homeschooling and one of her recent posts rated wild applause from many of us who avidly follow her blog. If you're homeschooling, planning on homeschooling or just interested in learning more about it, you should read Home Education: Delicious and Nutritious.
One other thing, you may think that I'm done with my Terabithia phase, but you are not-at-all-sadly wrong. And because I still am very much into it, I finally decided to give the movie RV a chance (on HBO). It's really an okay movie to watch if I didn't have a zillion other things to do with my time. Anyway, I'll spare you googling seconds and just tell you the connection. Jess in Terabithia is Karl (C?) in RV. Anyway, in the movie there's a homeschooling family that freaks out the lead family, but in the end, everybody realizes how awesome those homeschoolers are and it's actually the lead family who's got problems. I know not all homeschoolers are like the movie's Gornicke kids who skip grades and are studying for college tests at 15, but there certainly seem to be many of them.;-) Btw, if you're a fan of Kristen Chenoweth like me (gah, for a fan, I'm still not sure where the i's and e's go in her name), she's the homeschooling WAHM in the movie.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

June 12, 1898 was too our Independence Day from more than 300 years of Spanish oppression. We won that revolution fair and square and it was not our fault that the Spaniards had to be wily and sign us over to the Americans even if they no longer had any right to. And afterwards, the Filipinos fought long and hard to hold on to that brief taste of freedom, this time with a new enemy, who later fed everybody, even the Filipinos themselves, the atrocious lie called The Benevolent Assimilation. All in the past, I know, but if we must remember, we must do it correctly. We may have been usurped, but it was not without a fight, so you can understand our extreme objection to the term.
It is funny how many perspectives there are from which to view history. I remember when I was studying in Spain, my Spanish professor learned that I was from the Philippines and she proceeded to inform the rest of the class (98% American, 1% Japanese, 1% Filipino - moi) that the Spaniards esteemed the Philippines with fondness because we, along with Puerto Rico and Cuba, were the last of their colonies to leave them (and yeah, they lost us to the Americans - no mention of them losing directly to us). I don't need to tell you how differently Filipinos feel about the same point in history (the Treaty of Paris). For the clueless, here's a clue: it is definitely not with fondness.
More than a hundred years later, we rightfully celebrate that freedom we had fought for and won, which, as far as freedoms go, is much sweeter than freedom that was allegedly bestowed upon us. So here I am in 2008, reluctantly dipping my blogging toe in discussion beyond the nature of my lovely days blog and giving you the chance to see pictures of an ugly cake, with a defensive cry of "It's the thought that counts!" I thought I had the ingredients for moist white cake, but I had no Crisco, so I used butter and it seemed that our formerly huge stash of vanilla had finally been depleted, so I used almond extract instead. Slathered the thing with French buttercream frosting and now the people who have tasted it are ready to swear off sugar for good.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A Conversation about Personality

I put this survey here because I think a conversation about personality should go into my personal blog. I answered in such a manner (see below) and I'm really curious to see how you would. If you've got the time, give the survey a go.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Butterflies and Spaghetti

Philippine Independence Day is on June 12, but since it's more practical to have a long weekend, the day off work happened yesterday. Taking advantage of a time when Husband was actually free (no car errands to do - although he did have to have our car washed -, no business stuff to take care of, no friends competing for his time ;-p), we went to the World of Butterflies. We thought we hadn't done anything crazy in a while, so why not go to a greenhouse, albeit teeming with beautiful butterflies, at noon on a day in a series of ones with kiln-hot weather when all three of us were already teetering on the verge of succumbing to another round of colds, coughs, and whatnots? What do you think, huh? Kuhrrrrazy!
Marguerite loved the place, of course. There was also a pond with kois and turtles. She was signing "butterfly" and cooing "fly" the whole time (the term stuck - that's what she's called it since she was a baby). She thought the turtles were cool (btw, "turtle" is one of the two-syllable words she first said). They were bashful creatures and would dive off rocks into the water when we pointed at them. Naturally Marguerite thought they were playing peek-a-boo with her.

Later on, we met up with my MIL and BIL and had dinner at the Old Spaghetti House in Antipolo. There was a dinky little playground in the garden and Marguerite, of course, had to have a go at the slide. It wasn't a very good slide and the kid would have landed on a pebbly ground, but BIL was there to hold on to her while Husband took pictures. I was not up to the task for this one. I can only assist with toddler slides.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Where Marguerite Was Judiciously Left Home

She might have stolen the show. She would have wanted to run up and down the aisle. She definitely would have been noisy. So she stayed home with Nana and Aunt Chip.
If you expect to see her pics, don't bother looking through this album. If you don't want to see my pic, don't bother looking through this album. If you were one of the (fellow) photo-hogs, you might want to look through this album; I'm sure there are two or three of your pics here.
J and O's Wedding

Sunday, June 8, 2008

It's a Wrap!

Yesterday was our friends' wedding and while Husband and I had already gotten a gift for them, I still wasn't sure about how to go about wrapping it. As much as possible, we don't purchase wrapping paper anymore. So far we haven't been consistent about it yet, but we're getting there, same with shopping bags. (Side note: In other countries, you had to pay extra for the grocery bags.)
Anyway, we still have Christmas wrapping paper from three years ago (that pack is like the fish and loaves of wrapping paper; I really think it can last a decade.), so I just used that as a base and glued paper towels I dyed pink and scraps of purple tissue. We still have curling ribbons from Marguerite's party (the fish and loaves of curling ribbons - it has supplied several other parties and presents since). I admit the present didn't look very wedding-y, more of sweet sixteen-ish (the motif was lavender), but I thought it looked pretty. Will check if Husband took a picture of it. For a card, I just cut scrapbook paper and lettered the cover myself.
Do I have a point here? Just that I didn't buy wrapping paper. A big green (not even) and frugal hurrah *snort*. Honestly, I'll try to do fabric wrapping next time (unless it's Christmas, because those fish and loaves wrapping papers have to be depleted or they will take over one of the rooms.)
PS. I tried not to think about it yesterday, but it's really bumming me out. Chip was supposed to be a bridesmaid yesterday.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

A Chance to Influence USA Today?

Honestly, I hardly ever read the news at the beginning of the day anymore. There's so much bad stuff going on that you just want to spend the entire day hiding under your bed covers.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Obviously They're Not Simple Windmills.

They never are.
What was that? Probably nothing but a fatuous intro. Then again, probably not.
I got the link to this wonderful site of science-themed songs on from my local homeschooling egroup and I love it. I haven't listened to everything yet (of course, as there are lots of songs on there), but my eye had been instantly caught by a note from the author of the page recommending this particular song to fans of They Might Be Giants.
I think I may have indirectly mentioned in the past how much I love this band. I have a penchant for fun rock. I had been a fan of Weezer way before young kids thought they were in league with Simple Plan or Good Charlotte (definitely not a fan of those two). I think geek rock is adorable. I certainly think alternative rock bands making children's music are doubly so (FYI, TMBG did the theme songs for The Higglytown Heroes and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse). I always suspect them to be behind show theme songs that I like (Malcolm in the Middle, True and Amazing Vacation Homes), although I was foiled once by Psych's (like it too). Anyway, the fact that their name has associations with Don Quijote, one of my fave books ever (okay, they actually got it from a movie based on a broadway show based on the book), and one of the parts of which I love (hence the told-you-it's-not-fatuous title - DQ fighting windmills he mistook for giants).
Here are the words to "Why Does the Sun Shine". It's a really cute song.

The sun is mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace,
where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees.

The sun is hot, the sun is not a place where we could live.
But here on earth there'd be no life without the light it gives.

We need its light.
We need its heat.
We need its energy.
Without the sun without a doubt there'd be no you or me.

The sun is mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace.
Where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees.

The sun is hot.
[It is so hot that everything on it is a gas, iron, copper, aluminum, and many others.]

The sun is large.
[If the sun were hollow, a million earths could fit inside, and yet the sun is only a Middle-sized star.]

The sun is far away.
[About 93,000,000 miles away, and thats why it looks so small!]
But even when its out of sight, the sun shines night and day.

We need its light.
We need its heat.
We need its energy.
The sunlight comes from our own sun's atomic energy.

[Scientists have found that the sun is a huge atom-smashing machine. The heat and light of the sun are caused by the nuclear reactions of hydrogen, Nitrogen, Carbon, and helium!]

The sun is mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace.
Where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

We Sure Don't Watch Much TV

YouTube is something else though. Okay, it's not that bad. I usually just go for musical clips and when Marguerite is hanging around, we watch Hi5. Okay, maybe when I said "musical clips", I meant clips of Hi5 performing their intro/closing songs. So maybe it does mean that I watch Hi5 even when Marguerite is not around. There is no shame in that. I repeat, there is no shame... What can I say, I enjoy watching them dance (meaning I dance along, me with my two left feet) and sing (yes, I sing along with my consistently flat/sharp rendition) and it's okay because it makes me perky, lol. I find that I get to accomplish more when I'm perky. And there's nobody around to find it annoying or dumb. Even if there were, you know the saying: live and let people make fools of themselves if they want to.
I don't watch the recent ones. I like the original cast with Filipino-born Kathleen de Leon-Jones as a part of it. I may be a ghastly sight dancing, but Marguerite is, as always, as cute as a button. She can do the T, a semblance of the E, the A, and the M in the Team Song, the up-up-up part of the Growing Song, the when-you-wish-upon-a-star part in the Wondering Song, etc. Of course, she also likes the Hi5 theme(?) song (5 in the air, let's do it together, 5 to the side, who cares about the weather...) Anyway, these are the ones we regularly watch: sharing, enjoying, growing, traveling, wondering and team. They also have Spanish versions, so that's something we can integrate into the Spanish hour.
PS. There's a story submission callout for UP alumni. Read here.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A Taste of Rainbow

Cheska and I call 'em arc-en-ciel kookays. She's not having her birthday get-together until later this afternoon so yesterday, we spent the afternoon baking rainbow butter cookies. We considered baking her birthday cake, but her mom saved us from a possible kitchen disaster by taking care of that herself. Anyway, voilà les biscuits!

PS. I just posted about article writing in my WAHM blog. Please check out. :)

Monday, June 2, 2008

Happy Birthday to Aunt Cheska

Today is Marguerite's beloved Aunt Cheska's birthday. She's turning sweet sixteen and we're very proud of how she has turned out. A lovelier girl you couldn't find and the best thing about her? She'll volunteer to take care of Marguerite in a pinch, hehe.

All It Takes Is a Single Spark to Have Fun AND Earn Money

I know I have mentioned SocialSpark in the past, but here is a more detailed review of this social networking site that gives you the chance to monetize your blog as well as boost the amount of traffic it receives (which is, as we probably all know, an essential factor in monetizing your blog).

There are people out there who frown upon the idea of monetizing one’s blog, but it is a legit and easy earning option for many work-at-home parents. SocialSpark does abide a strict code of ethics which, in turn, also guides users in maintaining their credibility to their readers. This code involves the following features:

-100% Audit-able In-Post Disclosure
-100% Transparency
-100% Real Opinions
-100% Search Engine Friendly

SocialSpark is different from other paid post sites because there is a great emphasis on the social networking aspect of it. You can add to your list of contacts and the more friends you have, the more traffic you direct to your site and the better your chances are at snagging posting opportunities. There are also many fun features involving the actual opportunities themselves. Some require videos or pictures whereas other sites usually limit opportunities to text posts and a standard image.

Another attribute of SocialSpark is the chance to queue up for an opportunity. You sign up for a slot and simply wait for their confirmation. There is no need to be paranoid every second that other users are beating you to the opportunities you are qualified for.

Compartmentalizing Being a SAHM

Works in Blogland too. This blog is being taken over by WAHM posts and my original intent was for the focus to be on parenting, homeschooling, homemaking, creativity, etc. Also, some readers have complained about the surveys slowing down their PCs, so I thought it prudent to create another blog that concentrates more on my travails as a WAHM. I've just started it, so it's still pretty bare, but give it time and it will be properly useful to readers. Hope you'll give that one the same support you've accorded this one. See you there. :)
PS. Let me just clarify that this blog will still feature WAHM posts, but more sporadically than of late.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

It's an Ingenious Way to Hide

There’s USA Network's new original series In Plain Sight starring Mary McCormack as a US Marshall in charge of protecting and helping relocated federal witnesses adjust to their new identities and lives. “In Plain Sight” offers more than the usual fascination of crime or detective genre shows because beyond the investigating and solving of crimes, it also lets viewers peek into one of the favorite “what if” scenarios (it’s right up there with “what if you won a million dollars”). Many of us wonder what it would be like to assume a new identity, completely leaving the old one behind or even to lead a double life, simultaneously portraying two characters. Throw in the danger of being discovered and you’ve got yourself a thoroughly thrilling watch. To prep you for the premier airing of “In Plain Sight” on June 1, 2008, I’ve posted an image of Mary on my blog for you to spot.