Missing Dad, Eleven Months Now

February 27th, 2008 § 10

Among the gazillions of memories that my Dad left us with, these two photos are probably the ones that will forever be etched in my head: the black-and-white photo from the last sermon he gave in church, and the color-ed one (with that eternal smile) from a medical-dental mission from way back.

For the past eleven months since Daddy’s death, I’ve gotten so used to seeing these two pictures around — on my Mom’s office wall, in our living room, on a mural in church — that I’d sometimes find myself automatically saying “Hi Daddy, how are you?” everytime I pass through them.

Then again, there are times, such as last Sunday (or NOW), when staring at his pictures would make me cry uncontrollably again. There are just no words to describe how much I miss Daddy. Sometimes it would feel as if the pain of his death is being relieved in my heart over again like it just happened.

I didn’t realize until earlier today that it’s been almost a year already since Dad left to be with the Lord. A lot of things has happened ever since, and there was not a time when I didn’t wonder how different things would have been if he was still around. How I would have made better decisions if I got to have a piece of his wisdom, or how it would have been happier to celebrate special days and victories with him, or how trials would have been easier to bear if I could talk to him, get a piece of his mind, or probably laugh my sorrows away with him.

I guess these are some of the things I will always remember about Daddy. He always had a way of staying calm even though he’s got a gunk of problems to think about. He had this ability to trust God wholly in spite of all the discouragements that this world is made of; and to smile even through trying times.

Smile though your heart is aching, Daddy would often sing — while taking a bath, or while driving, or once when I was so brokenhearted from breaking up with my first boyfriend. I guess he knew that these lines would never fail to bring the smile back on my face. Coincidentally, Daddy also sang portions of this song during his last sermon in church, unaware that it was going to be one of the last memories he’d be leaving us with forever.

The song’s been playing over and over in my head the past few days. It also happened to play on the stereo while Mom and I were in the car the other day, and as tears started falling down my cheeks, Mom sent reassuring smiles my way as if to say that it’s okay to cry.

The irony of this song is, the manner by which it tells you to NOT cry makes you cry EVEN MORE. Pfft.

But I needed it then. And I sure do need it now. Even though it’s making me CRY MORE than SMILE, I’m okay, because there’s something so refreshing about being able to cry things out, while holding on to the simple truth that in this cruel world, God will always give you reasons to smile. And what do you know, hearing Daddy’s faint voice from a distance as if he’s singing the song to me makes the thought even sweeter. His memories shall always live by.

So hey, I’m gona grab some Kleenex now and cry some more. :) Meanwhile, here’s the song — click to play — just in case you need to hear it too. (Lyrics after the jump.)

Smile, whats the use of crying?
You’ll find that life is still worthwhile
If you just smile

Smile by Nat King Cole | CLICK

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Click Happy Friday: Pink Roses for Me

February 22nd, 2008 § 3

So I’m little by little rekindling my time with Konks (my Nikon D40) and to learn *serious* photography; hence I’ve started posting again at my photoblog after four months of undeclared hiatus. Also, aside from my *ehem* renewed commitment to regularly update Click Happy, I’m also starting this new category on this blog, Click Happy Friday, where I’ll post one or two of my favorite shots (or something like that) every Friday.

That way, I can regularly update this blog too, at least once a week. Yep. Let’s see how far I’ll go haha. :)

This week, pink is the color of love <3

So there. This is the first bouquet of pink roses from teh boyfriend, delivered to me on Valentines Day. It’s the first, that’s right, because five days after V-day, another bouquet of roses was delivered in the office. Ergo, the whole week, I have a bouquet of lovely pink roses in the apartment, and another set of pretty hotpink ones here on my office desk.

Receiving flowers on V-days may be cliche, I know right. And one can say that you can always make everyday Valentines day anyway (boo, there goes one of my boyfriend’s cheesy pickup lines, lol). But IMO, it’s the essence of “tradition” that makes the flowers, the sickeningly sweet chocolates, and even the cutesy teddy bears, special.

A note to apathetic guys (and boyfriends) out there: girls, whether or not they try to deny their desire, or justify their non-desire to receive flowers on special occasions such as V-days or anniversaries, will still love to receive something — anything — that would make them feel that they are, at least, remembered or thought of on these special days. Right Ivy? Ohh I should know. I’ve gone through years of being a cynic when it comes to these things, only to realize that it’s actually kindof fun to be pursued, courted, and loved this way. (I guess teh boyfriend’s doing a good job, after all. Whew.)

Okay, I stop yakking like a highschool girl now because it’s no V-day anymore, heh, but before we say buhbye to the month of love, here’s my clickhappy moment for the week. :)

I Was Featured in Manila Bulletin Yay

February 20th, 2008 § 10

This is long overdue already but I’m blogging it anyway. The Blog-o-rama column that featured my two blogs came out last weekend, Feb 18, on the Technews of Manila Bulletin. I didn’t know when it was gona come up, hence I didn’t get myself a copy, grr. I found out about it only the day after, good thing a friend has got a daily subscription of the paper. Yay.

In the interview, I talked about my blogs and how they evolved from a personal venting channel to a tool that has helped me establish my profession. Also, I talked about how it’s like to be a struggling female SEO (I know, this is a pretty old tune already, ha!) in this IT industry that’s been mostly dominated by men. I had fun answering Miss Annalyn’s questions, I guess it pretty much showed in how I blabbered my way throughout the interview.

So yeah. Thanks (once again) to Miss Annalyn Jusay for this wonderful opportunity. :) I took snapshots of the column and uploaded them there. Also, the online version can be found here.

Teh Dream Job, I Can Has It!

February 16th, 2008 § 13

Remember that “Dream Job” I once blogged about? That Yahoo Philippines Online Community Manager job opening which, for a while there, I thought I’d like to consider? (No, I didn’t even dare apply, though). Well, the thing with that job is, it required a lot of online and offline socializing and traveling and talking to people — some of the things that appealed so much to me.

Fastforward to now, Day 5 of the Internet Marketing Bootcamp is happening here at our USAP office in Pasig as I type this. I just finished my talk on Search Engine Optimization, and Rico Sta. Cruz is now discussing basic design principles. And I. Am. Not. Listening. Haha. I’ve heard Rico’s talk about 5 times already anyway (hehe), and quite honestly, his has been one of my favorites – ahhh, the frustrated designer that I am. ;)

Anyway, as I browse through my feed reader while Rico talks up front, I find myself reading the recent developments in Yahoo, following the news about their laying-off of hundreds (thousands?) of employees. Apparently, Yahoo’s lay-off included a bunch of VPs, and just recently, Jessica Bowman, who was Yahoo’s SEM Manager — which really came as a shock to me and probably to the rest of the Search world too. I’ve always been an avid lurker of her blog, and she’s been one of the few female SEO gurus I’ve always admired.

So I go back to that job opening that I sooo excitedly blogged about a few months ago, and realized that whoever got that job has probably been laid-off by now too. :P

Anyway, I know I wouldn’t stand a chance then, even if I tried. What really struck me now is how much I’ve dreamed of a lot of things — of getting out of this country and finding my place in (or out of) this industry — when all the while, I’m already right where I should be. I guess it just took me a while to weigh my options, identify the pros and cons, and realize that there’s still more to this place that’s worth the squeeze.

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I'm Surrounded by Weddings!

February 14th, 2008 § 6

And I kind of like it. :) (Hey, it’s Valentines Day, I’m allowed to be keso. Heh.)

So I just finished another wedding album layout for Dave and Farrah, a couple from half-way across the world, whom I only know by name, and by the faces on their lovely wedding photos, which, for the past two weeks, have graced my laptop’s screen and Adobe Photoshop windows. It’s a lot of work, yes, but who wouldn’t enjoy doing something like this? :)

Wedding Album Layout

© MyPinoyWeddings.com

I’ve so far designed three albums — one for a couple named Sheila and Vince, another for a Sweet Sixteen-er named Sherrylou, and this latest album for Farrah and Dave. Now let me just say that.. one of the things I really love about this, compared to designing blog templates and websites, is that I don’t have to deal with coding and validating CSS and xhtml. I suck at those things! I really don’t have the patience to do codes and scripts the way Joni so gracefully does it. (Yeah, yeah. I’m a loser like that.)

But even more importantly, I love doing wedding album layouts because while I get to squeeze my creative juices and get paid on the side, I also get to be part of preserving these people’s most special, once-in-a-lifetime moments, albeit anonymously. I love it! :)

Apparently, aside from being surrounded by wedding photos, I’m also being surrounded by talks about marriage and wedding, and people getting married!

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