Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Yesterday's Highlights

Marguerite managed to lock us out of our bedroom last night (she has a thing against open doors). Anyway, the bedroom keys are not where they should have been (which is hanging from the key holder nailed on the front door... Apparently Husband put them away in a safe place *snort*) and for all intents and purposes, they're still missing. Husband had a fine time practicing to be a petty criminal. He spent a good chunk of an hour watching tutorials on YouTube and finally decided on lock bumping (without an actual bump key) although there was a pretty interesting video of a young boy demonstrating how to pick a lock using a paper clip. In the end, what worked was the bathroom key. Husband inserted it only halfway through and twisted. Thank heavens for cheap doorknobs.

Anyway, some fun we had yesterday. Clearly, pancakes can be used to review your letters. I did it with syrup last week, but Marguerite liked this way better.

I also decided to finally do something about the mini jelly jars that have been knocking around in the kitchen shelves since December. I have these beeswax candles that were just hiding away in a drawer, so these two things made a connection in my mind and that's how I ended up working on candlestick holders yesterday afternoon.

Marguerite "helped" me with this, btw. I had a whole other design in my mind, but I didn't have enough wire (definitely gotta get some more, lest there be more lockpicking incidents) or the fancy beads I pictured in my head. I ended up just using tissue wrapper (yes, I compulsively save used gift wrappers) and some twine.

Now, I'm wondering what I can turn this thing into or use it on...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Hanging with Elephants

So yesterday I hung out with some elephants, lol. Marguerite and I were doing puppets (two of which were elephants) and I remembered that Marguerite was an elephant herself last October. I'm not sure if I ever showed you this, but:

Anyway, I hunted up her old costume and had Marguerite wear the head part (I actually have to sew back on the trunk and one tusk as they fell off in the wash - no prob, Husband got the thing for about 50 pesos) so she could be an elephant too. Tried taking a decent picture to no avail. Still:

All Things Drive System

I plan to homeschool my daughter. Sometimes I wonder how I will be able to teach things that I know nothing about. Science and technology, for instance, is not my strongest suit. I understand that the subject is infinitely interesting, but since none of my former Science teachers were able to show where the fascination lies, all I am left with are memories of tests and grades and very minimal learning. I would like my daughter to be better than that, so this means that I have to be a better Science teacher than those that I had. I always said that anything that I didn’t know yet, I could learn along with my daughter anyway. This means that homeschooling necessitates a change in my attitude too. I tend to pass on the electric or techie matters to my husband, but it’s time I learned. For example, I lately had to write an article about drive systems and I did not know a single thing about it. In the course of my research, I came across a business (Drive Systems, Inc.) that offers high quality systems, parts and systems at very competitive prices. Now, my knowledge about this matter has improved. At the very least, I know where to go if ever I need new or used baldor parts. The site also offers all sorts of training so should we ever need to learn more about drive and control systems (for homeschooling or practical purposes), we know where to go.

Friday, April 24, 2009


I love watching my daughter play. Even better, I love playing with her. It's so amazing to discover some of the things she has been learning just from observing. It's also very thrilling to see how creative and imaginative she can be. Yesterday, we got out her blocks and started building ramps and bridges for her toy cars.

Oops, should have rotated the last one

When we got tired of that, we got out her tent. First, it was all about getting cozy inside. She got her favorite stuffed animals, a few books, and a blanket. Later on, she was turning it upside down, flattening it... Anyway, she played with it until, well, now. It hasn't gotten old yet. She's still finding ways to have fun with it.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ever Thought of Moving to Paradise?

I was able to catch the match between Brian Viloria and Ulises Solis. I usually cannot stand watching boxing, but where there’s a Filipino involved, of course I have to cheer for him or her. Anyway, our Brian Viloria, who has been dubbed the Hawaiian Punch since he grew up in Hawaii, won and he was so funny in his victory. He’d go to the ring corners, stand on something (couldn’t see what it was) and do the hula for the screaming crowd, boxing gloves on and all. It must have been a wonderful experience to grow up in a paradisal place like Hawaii. If I may mention the Travel Channel’s Sam Brown again, when she did her whole series on Hawaii, I bet many viewers considered looking up Honolulu Real Estate to start planning their move there. You’ll get the best of everything: waters, mountains (not to mention volcanoes), big city, nature… and you get to say “Aloha” and “Mahalo” all the time.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It's Thundering on Earth Day


I was going to write an article on ways to celebrate Earth Day, but Marguerite woke up early, so I thought I'd just post links to the different sites that have already published great ideas on doing this (celebrate Earth Day, not write an article).

10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day Right Now…without messing with your world
Ten ways to celebrate Earth Day with (or without) kids
6 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day
How to Celebrate Earth Day
Earth Day roundup--stay home or go out, plenty of ways to salute our planet


We're being pummeled with thunderstorms this week, so Marguerite and I are forced to stay indoors. It would be nice to play outside, but I also welcome the chance to be cozy inside. The challenge is in keeping Marguerite entertained without turning on the TV. This morning, I thought it would be a good idea to work with playdough. I started making dinosaurs,

and Marguerite did have fun with them, but a little later, she had the idea of making accessories instead. We started out with a simple ring:

We later moved on to slightly bigger things, such as an anklet:

We also made an ID bracelet. If you can't tell, that says "Midge".

We also attached a rose charm on a piece of short cord.

I'm sorry that the pictures are sucky. It's because I thought bringing out the Nikon would be too much trouble (too big and expensive), so I made do with my phone.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Celebrating Earth Day

It's tomorrow and while some hardcore environmentalists think it has outlived its usefulness, I don't think there's anything wrong with celebrating the planet we call home, not to mention reminding its inhabitants to take better care of it. Those in the Philippines who want to participate in any of the activities related to Earth Day can visit this website for a list of events. I believe there are marathons, tree planting activities, exhibits, symposia, etc. Hopefully, many of us can get involved. :)

Monday, April 20, 2009

One Weekend in the Summer of 2009

So it was a pretty fun weekend. Saturday, we did this:

We went back to my inlaws' and Marguerite "swam" in the inflatable pool with her cousins. If you see an adult in the pictures, that's Husband, who was supposedly watching Marguerite (supposedly is the operative word, lol). We don't let Marguerite play with toy guns. I grew up watching McGyver and that's one of his influences. The gun-like toys she's holding here are her cousin's and we insisted on calling them squirters. *rolls eyes*

On Sunday, we went to church, of course. We had lunch at my parents', then off we went to the UP campus for the usual carless oval fun. It got dark early, but we still let Marguerite run around on the grass. She and I made fairy houses. We were in the process of making our second one when big fat drops of rain started falling. We rushed back to the car and as we drove away, it started pouring like mad.

Anyway, on both days, we enjoyed Mang Larry's Isaw. Husband has always been a fan (I'm more of a fishballs girl) and anyway, this Isaw stand is legendary and its fame reaches far and wide. There were students, alumni (like us), people who lived in the area, foodies... The line was loooong (Saturday, we got there around 4 pm as they were setting up and we were smug. Sunday, we got there past 5, got over our dismay and resolutely stood in line, or at least, Husband did). I bet Mang Larry's a millionaire now, lol. I didn't see it, but I think Husband drank the vinegar and if you must know, he enthusiastically sang praises for Mang Larry's isaw all the time we were eating (there were several tables set up, but many ate by their cars, cups of vinegar resting on the hood. Some laid blankets on the grass and had a picnic). Very fortunate for us, Marguerite was not interested in isaw. She had pretzels, sunflower seeds, and parmesan crackers instead.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Fantine in Her Forties?

I think I've mentioned a couple of times that I'm a huge Les Miz nut. One of the songs from the musical I really love listening to (one of many) is "I Dreamed a Dream". If I'm not mistaken, this is Husband's favorite (yes, he spent months watching the TAC with me while I was absolutely rabid about it, still love it to death, but the obsession has been toned down a smidge). Anyway, I've been seeing Susan Boyle's rendition of the song on CNN and Fox (If you must know, I prefer Fox), but didn't do anything except to text a couple of co-Les Miz lovers if they'd seen it. But now, as a true Les Miz fan, I feel compelled to post about it. I've heard versions of Ruthie Henshall, Patti Lupone, Randy Graff, Lea Salonga (although she was Eponine instead of Fantine really, but she sang it in concert) and a slew of others who star in their YouTube channels lol, but I say Susan Boyle is at par with the great ones. Anyway, Susan is saved from having to wear the blond cornrows wig that Fantines wear (this is better than the mullet wig that Mariuses wear at least, lol). I was going to embed a video here, but embedding has been disabled for most of the videos available on YouTube. Oh well.

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Scents I Associate Myself with

I remember mentioning before that I’d rather go out without anything on my face (I’m speaking of makeup, just in case you are not sure) than go out without perfume (and no, I don’t substitute perfume for a shower). I’m not particularly trend-conscious or prissily vain (so I don’t feel the need to show off new clothes or go through the rigors of intense beautification), but I have always been fond of scents. If we were to talk perfume, I love vanilla and the usual yummy kitchen scents for daily use. My favorite perfumes (meaning I have bottles of these on the dresser or in the fridge) however are Lancôme’s Trésor and Givenchy’s Amarige.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Pictures from Church Camp

This post is for my churchmates. These are pics from Husband's camera. I'm not sure how soon he'll get around to sharing these, so I took it upon myself to upload some of the ones in the memory cards I found here. Enjoy!

Holiday in Cornwall

There are many things about England that fascinate me. While I would enjoy visiting a big city such as London and typically quaint English towns such as Stratford-upon-Avon or Bath, I definitely would also love to experience Cornwall.
I’m a big fan of the travel channel and I can’t help but be smitten every time Cornwall is featured. There’s the culinary show set in St. Ives, Cornwall (how lovely to be able to stay in a place that is mentioned in a popular nursery rhyme) called Beach Café and my personal hero Samantha Brown also featured Cornwall in one of her Passport to Europe episodes. Watching these shows, you just can’t help but vow to take a romantic break down in West Country and rent a charming cottage in Cornwall.
Not exactly your typical English resort town, Cornwall is still rich with history and culture. For example, it has a language and cuisine quite apart from the rest of England. Take a moment to recall literary works you were assigned to read in the past and you’ll remember classics such as "The Queen of Cornwall", "Tristan und Isolde", and "The Pirates of Penzance" are all set in Cornwall. Are you even aware that “Jack and the Beanstalk” is about a young Cornish boy? I don’t know about you, but this is just the sort of thing that makes me even more excited to see the place.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Donate to the Fresh Air Fund

There are many children growing up in the city these days. There is nothing wrong with raising a child in the city, but it would definitely benefit children to have a country or suburb experience every once in a while wherein they can enjoy nature and fresh air. While some children have parents who can afford to send them to camp or to take the entire family for a vacation in the country (or some have relatives in the country who don't mind having them for a period of time during school break), there are those who have no choice but to stay in the city. Through the Fresh Air Fund, more and more of these children are given the opportunity to spend some time in the country or suburbs. With summer vacation fast approaching, the Fresh Air Fund is calling on families from the country or suburbs to volunteer hosting city kids for a time this summer. You can learn more about this program here.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Daybook - April 13, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

For This Week...

Outside my Window... blinding sunlight, even the birds seem to have escaped to some cooler retreat
I am thinking... of my parenting philosophies and whether I've chosen the right ones when it comes to raising my daughter
I am thankful for... God's goodness; life has been quiet lately and I should remember to be properly thankful for all the mundane details I tend to take for granted
From the kitchen... cucumber shake and pasta
I am creating... a maypole (I know, I know... the thing has associations)
I am wearing... tank top and shorts
I am reading... Brigitte Gabriel's "They Must Be Stopped" (my dad insisted I read it; it's very interesting)
I am hoping... that the current attempt to potty-train will be successful
I am hearing... the whir of several fans, a baby crying from a couple of doors down
Around the house... I've just cleaned the floors, done the lunch dishes, and I'm now about to whip up tonight's dessert (mango cream whatnot)
One of my favorite things... a pair of green (beads and crystals) dangly earrings that my sister made for me
A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... take on a few more MyLot tasks, paint a marguerite poster for my daughter's room, finish this story I've been working on in my head...
Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

Summer fun. Marguerite "swimming and fishing" in an inflatable pool at my inlaws'. Don't worry, the water here was enjoyed by many (3 other kids and 2 adults - not all at once, lol) and was later used to wash a couple of cars.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Marguerite's Easter '09 Pic

We know the day's not about bunnies, chicks or eggs, but we still think this makes a great ecard, lol. Joyeuses Pâques.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

I'd Love a Rustic Flavor in My Home

If I were to choose the furnishings of my home… What am I saying? I do choose my own furniture (the lack of it in our home right now wasn’t brought on by a minimalist tendency but by the mundane matters of financial constraints and the presence of a toddler). I have a pretty eclectic taste, and then also a rather limited budget to really go for matching stuff (not that I would), but my personality would call for a blend of Victorian and vintage to artsy-fartsy and rustic furniture. It’s a matter of making different items work together. I would love to have this lamp, for example. I think it would lend a whimsical tone anywhere. It would do its job and I can also adorn it with theme thingamajigs like tiny woodland creatures coming from those knotholes.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Dashing off a Note Before We Leave for Camp

Leaving for church camp today. We're actually a day late since it started yesterday (Husband still had work yesterday). We probably won't get there until late this afternoon. Have a couple of more chores left to attend to. Cleaning the house is one (would hate to come home from a camping experience to a grungy house; would fall apart and threaten nervous breakdown again, lol). Taking Marguerite's Easter pic is another. Have to stop off at my parents' (Mom and Chip will be there; hope my sister can make it to the next camp.) on our way to the mountains to pick up a couple of things. Anyway, hope we all take a moment to ponder on God's love for us and what Jesus did for us on the cross. iHasta pronto!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Pics from a Sunday Afternoon

Yesterday we went to church of course. In the afternoon Kiwi the dog was there and Marguerite was as usual smitten. We're probably gonna get her a pet in the future as she's so in love with animals but as of the moment, it's not the right time since I'm still dealing with toilet training, binky weaning, etc. (it was easy enough to wean Marguerite from the bottle, but I've come to look upon the binky as magical, something that has the ability to preserve my nerves so I probably need me some weaning from it too) and of course, pets are banned in our building (just like the apartment of the "Girl in 14G", lol - Marguerite and I love this song). Look at that girl's hair. Haven't cut it yet. I'll wait until we can donate 10 inches of it (don't worry I'm definitely going to save a lock from her first haircut).

After the afternoon fellowship, we dropped by the UP campus to let Marguerite run around. Yes, the heavy blue blob she's chasing is yours truly.

A Midge Is a Kind of Bug Anyway

So I got to work on the door hanger the following day, but didn't really have the time to go online and blog, so voilà:

FYI, Marguerite loves it. She has been hanging it on all of the doorknobs around the house. She sings the lalalala ladybug song to it from Miss Spider. It's hardly perfect, but it works (What does it do? It hangs, duh). So now Marguerite's bedroom door is a bit jazzed up.

Friday, April 3, 2009

La Chambre de Marguerite Door Plate

We had a collection of freebie mouse pads from all the Lay's potato chips we ate over the holidays (Christmas). Of course, since I'm an incorrigible packrat, they were all just knocking about in Marguerite's room until I could decide what to do with them.

At first I thought I could turn them into some sort of cork board (rubber board?) and some of them might still end up turning into that, but for now I thought I'd make a door nameplate for Marguerite's room. I used up 1 and 1/2 mouse pads for this project. I think I'll use the other half to make a door hanger.

For some reason I just had to do this project yesterday. It would have been better if I'd waited until next week so I could get my craft supplies from my parents' house this weekend, but when you're in the mood, you must answer the creative call. Anyway, while I was braiding yarn, Marguerite got hold of the upper part of the plate and managed to tear the paper. I wasn't about to make a new one, so I just taped it together again (don't even have glue here).

We do have our art supplies here (but only a few brushes, most of them are in Marikina) so I thought I'd use pastels on the rubber of the lower part of the plate. I don't really know that I like how it turned out.

I think it's too dark. I'll probably glitter glue over Marguerite's name to make it stand out more (but when I do these afterthought whatnots, I usually end up ruining things, so we'll see). It still might change or I might decide it's really ugly and just do it over, but for now it's hanging on Marguerite's bedroom door.