Quarter-lifer meets Mid-lifer

July 25th, 2007 § 30

It’s been a while since an actual human being entrusted her blog design to me. Truth be told, the last time a stranger contacted me to redesign her Blogger template was two years ago, back in May 2005 when tables were the in-thing; CSS was alien; and the blogosphere, simpler. Overwhelmingly enough, that girl, Maan, still has that froggy layout on. And I often wonder why. :P Hehe.

Since then, however, it’s either I became too busy with other things that I had no choice but to turn down requests for redesign, or, I simply became too self-conscious about my craft that I preferred to just have my mess on my own domains for my own enjoyment or disgust. Hehe.

And then she came along, and after a few months of knowing her through her blog, a dinner date and coffee at Cravings, and some texts and emails here and there, I knew that I just couldn’t turn down her request. And what an honor it was to tweak the online journal of a renown journalist and blogger, not to mention a very kind-hearted 40something such as her.

And what more of an honor (horror??!) to be called the “wisest 20something I know” by The Cathy Babao herself. (Wow, the pressure! LOL.) Seeing my link on her blogroll, lined up with highly respectable people who blog about life, careers, politics, charity work, family, and faith, (you get the drift), brings this sudden weight of pressure on me. I mean, imagine Kuya Bojie of Batibot singing, “alin, alin, alin ang naiba..” and everyone’s finger would point at my link. Get the picture?? Que horror!

Ohwells, at least the disclaimer is right there on the link text itself — “20something” being the operative word. 20somethings are still somehow entitled to be stupid and immature at times anyway, right? :P

Creating the design was a breeze, I actually had fun playing with Photoshop again. But the hardcoding part was more difficult than I thought. I originally made this really complicated layout using tables, hoping that I could make it work with the new Blogger set-up, but after hours of trying, I had to accept the grim reality that I’m not ready for complex CSS and table-less coding just yet. So I ended up just modifying an existing Blogger template and incorporating with it the header that I made. All things considered, I was kindof satisfied na rin with how things turned out.

So hey, check it out. I’m no Joni Ang or Liz Buenaflor or Mae Paulino. But well, I can always try. LOL. At the very least, I can help out modify Blogger layouts and make blog headers, if you’re sick of the usual Blogger template choices. Nope, no WordPress themes and table-less stuff for me yet. I have a lot to learn.

In the end, it was a win-win case for me. I got a breather from all the SEO and writing I have to do, but more importantly, getting to know a new friend, getting a glimpse of mid-life through her, and being inspired, was the icing on the cake. It was lovely meeting you, Miss Cathy, and let me just say.. the feeling is mutual as I see you to be one of the wisest women I know online and offline as well. :)

Plaything, but Not Really

July 19th, 2007 § 10

Time backtracked. It’s past midnight, I’ve got stuff to do, and I’m feeling a bit drained and gloomy for some reason, but look, here I go, browsing through MobiusGames, particularly the kids section, and having a grand time testing one game after another. So far, I’ve tried Eve Online (a galactic adventure ala Star Wars), I’m loving ToonTown (who wouldn’t love creating your own Disney-like cartoon in the form of a game?), and I’m currently hooked up on Diner Dash (again).

And let me just add that I had a super time laughing over GM Charo, Mobius’ resident love guru, whose love advices you can find on their recently launched online gaming magazine.

Yup. At a time like this. (I can’t believe myself either.)

I know I really have to move on from this break-now-pay-later phase like, real’ soon, but I can’t help myself. I’m extending the streak another night. I guess it’s true what they say — you know a person is pressured when she keeps stalling and making excuses. Take it from someone who has a tendency to do everything BUT that one thing she’s supposed to do.

Thanks to online gaming sites such as Mobius, stalling becomes worth the while. LOL. I mean, seriously. Sometimes I wonder to whom online games are meant for. Evidently, they’re meant for kids, and geeks, but come to think of it, they’re also meant for busy people who need to chill and have a break. Quite an irony, if I may say so, since most of us won’t even bother playing online games because we just don’t have the time. Thing is, if we don’t have time for stress-relievers such as this, maybe we need to make time for it. Get what I’m saying? (And no, I’m not just justifying myself.)

It’s just like that “gorgeous” night at Serendra with three lovely lovely ladies, where, in the midst of coffee and jazz music and yuppies having their own adult conversations, we found ourselves talking about things that usually don’t cross an adult’s mind.

Joni, Moi, Liz and Mae
THE Joni Ang, MOI, THE Liz Buenaflor & THE Mae Paulino

And it was fun, and refreshing, and feel-good. As if we allowed ourselves, for one night, to forget the race that this life is, that there are bills to be paid, and that there’s work the next day. Classic girl bonding moment.

Earlier that night, actually, we also met up with THE Eric Roceles and THE Riane Garfin of Digital Media Exchange, and just like the play of words to which this blog post is entitled with, we spent a good two hours talking about a plaything of sorts in an adult-ish and professional way. God knows I was never an online gamer (and the only games I got myself addicted with in my entire life were Theme Hospital, SIMS, and Diner Dash), but to be given a chance to get in touch with that kid inside again was something that’s pretty appealing to me.

So hey, my point is this. Encouraging you, my dear readers, to play Mobius’ Games takes the backseat, lest you start to think that this is a sponsored post (LOL). Sure, Mobius’ gaming portal is proudly crafted by among the best talents in the country, successfully targeting both local and international gamers from the South East Asia. Sure, they offer world-class gaming products that can really get you hooked. Sure, I’d recommend it anytime. But more important than this, gaming sites such as Mobius exist to remind people that there’s always ALWAYS a room, in our daily hectic existence, to relax, chill, and play.

So there goes my Mobius Experience. Plaything, but not really.

Unintentional Blog Hiatus

July 17th, 2007 § 4

It’s been more than a week since I blogged something here, which is quite unusual for a professing blogaholic that I am. The whole week passed, and the whole weekend too, and not a single post from yours truly. Yay me.

So what am I doing now blogging while my brother drives me to work? For one, I’ve always wanted to try out doing this — to blog on a moving vehicle in the middle of the cruel cruel EDSA traffic just to prove how blogaholic I am. For another (and this is mostly why), it just dawned on me that the whole weekend passed and I wasn’t able to accomplish anything. Yay me.

BloglinesI mean, take a look at my feed aggregator. See all the stuff I missed on reading? And I wouldn’t even begin to talk about the two design projects I committed myself into which I have to accomplish within this month, and the usual gunk of SEO stuff I need to do, and that blog post that I owe Eric (I know you’re lurking dude). I got a lot of reading and blogging and coding to do, and I didn’t touch any of them this weekend. Yay me.

Instead, I overslept, watched Harry Potter, modified my friendster template, uploaded stuff on my multiply account, twittered, jumped from one video to another over at YouTube, screamed my heart out on my, ehem, secret blog (don’t you dare look for it because you won’t find it), spent hours over the phone, and talked endlessly with my Mom to the wee hours of the night. If the weekend was longer, I probably would have watched those Prison Break, Grey’s Anatomy, and One Tree Hill DVDs I bought last week. YAY. ME.

And I actually enjoyed how it felt — to get a break, set aside my obligations even for a while, and just be.. lazy with people I love. There’s something liberating about breaking away from monotony and postponing obligations once in a while. I always thought I needed a break from all this, but I didn’t really plan on getting that break this weekend. Still, it took its course naturally and even though I know I have a lot of backlogs on my hands, I don’t feel the least bit of regret spending this weekend the way I did.

So hey, it’s Tuesday again and it’s back to work (and to the apartment) for me. I know I have a lot of making up to do with my responsibilities but it was all worth it. Then again, family, love, and setting time for myself, are my responsibilities too, right? Right. That being the case, this weekend was the most responsible I’ve ever been in a long while. :)

It’s true what they say. The things you didn’t plan or expect are usually the ones most liberating, and enjoying, and refreshing. This weekend just about proved me that. ♥

Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots

July 7th, 2007 § 10

A few weeks ago, I posted about our paperclip project, asking you, my dear readers, what you think about paperclips. A week later, I blogged about where that paperclip project brought me.

I never really got around to disclosing how our little paperclip quest came to be. It was merely a dare: I blog, he writes a song. (And yep, we were fully aware that there’s something unfair about that dare, LOL.) Consequently, the helpless random object we thought about was, yup, you got it, a paperclip. The rest was history. Anyway, you can navigate over to that post again to listen to the song my friend, David, made ;)

On another note, look what I found.

I wasn’t really looking for it but spending time in Powerbooks last night unintentionally brought me to the children’s section, and lead me to this.

Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots
Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots by Nikki Dy-Liacco

I’m excited to start my next great adventure.
Where will you take me?

I’ve read the paperclip story online already (thanks to Jun for pointing me to that direction), but I knew I just had to get myself a copy. For only 65 pesos, I got myself a keepsake. I love it! ♥

Simple joys, that’s what this is about, definitely. :)

Meanwhile, Lots of blogging to do. Up next this weekend, my date with them lovely ladies, and something about the latest gaming thing in the net today. ;)

Edit. Miss Nikki Dy-Liacco just gave us a heads up on her blog, which you can view here. Wee. We’re famous. LOL. :P She’s right, what’s more interesting here is the simple truth that worlds continue to collide. Yup. I couldn’t agree more.

I Was There at the Taste Asia Blogger Event

July 5th, 2007 § 27

Tuesday night was a success, definitely. The food, the drinks, the schwags. 150+ bloggers coming together in one place (and coming out with satisfied tummies) is no joke. And I managed to be there to witness it all. What? You didn’t see me? I have proof, look. 1. 2. 3. 4.

Taste Asia Cliquebooth
With me in the booth: Sasha, Sharm, Aileen, Markku, Marc, Ely and his friend.

That’s me with the “Band of Bloggers”, and I don’t even know what I was doing there, I just happened to be outside the booth and someone pulled me in. LOL. Let me just say, Cliquebooth rocks. You have to remember them next time you hold an event, seriously. Check it out. (In case you start to wonder how this picture set happened, I edited it. It’s impossible to have four shots with different people in one set, yup.)

I’m tempted to send some link love to everyone I saw there, but they’re just too many. So I’m sending this one to the organizer of all organizers, Miss Aileen Apolo, and SM Hypermarket, for that very successful event. Clapclap (standing).

Oh, and because I promised, here’s some link lovin’ for Ely for the pink umbrella that made my night (thank you!!). And Markku, the guy who every girl wants to have an issue with because he’s cute and single, and because you know no one will strangle you to death or send you anonymous hate comments when you post pa-cute pictures of yourself with him (ha!). And Sharmskee for the endless talk about cute Swiss hockey players and those camwhore moments. And Jayvee, for making takas for me one of those coke tumblers (oh, wait, sorry, am I not allowed to tell everyone that? hehe). And Mikey and TJ for being on bodyguard-slash-kuya mode to me the whole night. And Jomar who took us in, gatecrashers that we are. And Miss Janette, and Ganns, for expressing their concern towards my emotional state, judging from my twits (don’t worry Ma’am, Sir, those are just twits. Hehe.)

But really now. The real highlight of my night (but of course Markku‘s still a close second) was finally meeting Abel‘s family: Chel, who I only knew through multiply and twitter, and their adorable little princess, Tiana.

Abel's Family

There’s something about watching Tiana twirl in her cute flowery dress in the middle of a noisy and crowded party that made me want to tear up right there and then. And I wouldn’t elaborate lest I start emo-ing again, but really, candid moments like that (of a little girl twirling, or clutching her Mom’s hand, or hugging her Daddy as he carries her, oblivious to the noise going around her) sends my world to a halt, making me wish that life is as simple as that which is seen through her eyes.

Gaah. Didn’t I just say that I won’t elaborate? :)

It was lovely finally meeting you, Abel, Chel, and Tiana. ♥

Oh, and by the way, there was not a moment in that party that I didn’t wish Liz, Mae, and Joni were there. It was a relief making up and spending quality girl bonding session with these gorgeous bloggers at Serendra last night (Wednesday), though. But yup, that one deserves a separate post.

You Didn't Have to Know

July 4th, 2007 Comments Off on You Didn't Have to Know

I’m stressed. (Ok, Ganns, you got that one right.) And I’m hurting. And it’s sad that sometimes, the very thing that used to unload your stress, or the very thing that protects you from pain, becomes The main source of pain.

I’ve tried a lot of ways to deal with pain, trust me. I’ve done drinking (ain’t gona happen again), wasting away money over unnecessary shopping, wallowing in depression and ranting about it over coffee with girlfriends, getting myself overly preoccupied with work, feasting on carbs and junkfood over some chickflick marathon.. you get the picture. In the long run, however, I’ve learned that nothing really cures pain more than this: to be still, be acquainted with that deep longing inside, and know, in spite not understanding, in spite not having a full grasp of the picture, that He is God.

It’s not the easiest road to take. Sometimes you wish there’s some medicine that you just have to take and all the pain will simply go away. Sometimes you feel that it’s less painful to be distracted with other things, than trust a God you can’t see or understand. But a time just comes when you know there’s no point concealing it, no point pretending you’re okay when you’re not.

This afternoon, I faced pain head on, no turning back. It wasn’t easy, opening up wounds that never did mend, allowing frustration to sink in, and acknowledging the reality that there are things that just.. can’t be. And it hurts big time. It involves a lot of crying, and a lot of shouting inside an empty apartment, and a lot of questioning if God hears.

For the first time in a long while, I wanted something so bad and I know I couldn’t have it.

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