Monday, November 29, 2004

Ninong Joey, Kelsoe and Ninong Marc


I had an excellent day of thanks, filled with family bonding and the anticipated beginnings of the holiday weight game. So far I'm winning by the way. After a whole day affair of eating, catching up with my aunts and uncles, eating, watching my cousins toss the football around in the street, eating, playing mahjong, eating, running around following Kelsoe…and did I mention eating, my sister, my cousins and I went to go see NATIONAL TREASURE. Tin, Marc and I really liked! I'm into that Indiana Jones/Goonies treasure hunt kinda things. I love clever movies like that.

And then, like every Friday after Thanksgiving, we put up our holiday decorations. I love our house during the holidays. It's always so festive with the tree and all the holly, greeting cards and snowflakes. My mom was being all anal and mean about the decor though, so we left her for a few hours to decorate the living room herself. Geez mom calm down! You know that tagalog expression "killjoy?" All morning my sister was like, "Mom, murderjoy." Ha ha ha…She simmered down after awhile and the house looks super cheery! You guys should come visit one day! =)
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My Favorite Highlight - Life With Dad

What happened on Saturday, though, would have to take this weekend's award for most notable highlight. My ninong, ninang and cousins from San Francisco just bought a house in Rancho Cucamonga and Saturday was their housewarming party. The directions on the invitation clearly read:

If I were the one driving, I would've followed these directions just as they were given to us because I'm going to an unfamiliar place. But my dad, bless his sometimes lacking common sense, was determined to take the 134 to the 210 freeway because he knows that it now connects directly to the 15. So, my mom and I, not wanting to argue with the male necessity to figure out alternate "better" routes, didn't say a word. So we're driving down the 210 East for about an hour when my mom started to get suspicious, so I called Joe (Thanks Joe!) and he verified that it does connect to the 15. So we finally get to the 15 - but do we go North or South? My dad's like, "Well, sabi ng directions 15 North so 15 North na tayo." With a bad feeling in my stomach I said, "But we're not coming from the 10, dad, we're coming from the 210. What if it's not the same?" But it was too late cuz we were on the 15 North before I could say much more.So we're driving through the foggy traffic and we come upon those signs that list: VICTORVILLE, BARSTOW, LAS VEGAS and the # of miles left to get there. And my dad was like, "hmm…I wonder where Rancho Cucamonga is." I can tell that my mom is about to start yelling so I call my ninong's house and everyone in the background is like, "Where are you guys!" And then my ninong said it, "Oh, if you're coming from the 210 East you need to go on the 15 SOUTH." Ha ha ha…TURN BACK DAD! So we're looking out for an exit and of course we drive for miles and miles through the misty mountains (LOTR tribute) before we finally come upon the Oak Hill off-ramp. Last sign we saw, "Victorville 9 mi."We left our house at 11:40 am and we finally arrive in Rancho Cucamonga at…2:30 pm. I mapquested it and this is 45 miles away from Glendale. We drove 3 hours for a place 45 miles away from our point of origin!!

April, Me and Alyssa = shadow masters!

It was a nice gathering though. My sister and I got to bond with our nieces, April (6 years old) and Alyssa (4 years old). Never played shadow for 2 hours before, but that I did with these girls. THEY WORE ME AND TIN OUT!And then dad got faded with my uncles so I had to drive back home. He was non-stop in the car, asking EVERY 5 minutes if we were “on the right track.” I had to tell him to shush it a few times. Oh man…But we got home in 50 minutes, thanks very much! Men & directions I swear!
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Oh my goodness...I missed ONE class and here I am so screwed already! I just sat through the first 1 hour and 40 min of class and I just now realized how far behind I've gotten. I have 2 accounting projects to do still PLUS a final to study for. What the heck have I been doing!!

I know! I've been doing everything BUT work on schoolwork. Eeeeeks...I think I should hibernate for a couple of weeks. What have I gotten myself into?!

Saturday, November 27, 2004


Every year around Thanksgiving Day, we are constantly barraged by this question: What are you thankful for? And I bet I can speak for more than myself when I say that, when caught unprepared, we’re quick to form the most generic answers known to man. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t express gratitude for our families, friends and our health. Those are, and will always be gifts that we are grateful for. We should be thankful for that EVERYDAY. But if you really sat down and thought about it, what else are you truly thankful for? I was thinking about this today and I came up with 3 of the most significant blessings in my life:
Ø I’m thankful for the gift of POTENTIAL – Have you all heard that saying, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade?” Well, I used to think that I was a big fan of this attitude towards life – UNTIL I felt like I was getting handed lemons faster than I could produce the darn lemonade. You whine a little, talk about how sick you are of making and drinking this juice that you’ve suddenly formed an aversion to. But then after a while you realize that maybe there’s more to lemons than just lemonade. Maybe you could add it to iced tea or make some pie – SOMETHING! If there’s anything I’ve learned this year, it’s that seeing the potential in everything and everyone around us can be a saving grace in times when it seems like we can’t catch a break. It’s true that situations can become so heartbreaking or disappointing sometimes that you can’t possibly see how it could get better for you. But if you try just hard enough, and believe even just a little bit, you might realize something about the ordeal that could be important to you. And in the interim, you might realize some potential in yourself too.
Ø I’m also thankful for the gift of POSSIBILITY – In the last few years, one lesson has been imbedded into our minds time and again. That is that nothing is ever for sure – NOTHING. I think I’ve undergone and witnessed enough ordeals to know that not every situation or circumstance has JUST a right or wrong or JUST a black or white side. The more complicated the situation, the more shades of gray there are to consider. But often what happens is that we become so consumed by what SHOULD be that we tend to ignore what COULD be. When we ignore the COULD-BE’s in life, we’re ruling out hundreds of options that may help us out of our most challenging, and often perplexing dilemmas. No matter how confined we can feel, I’m starting to believe there’s a lot of truth being suggested when people say that, “The possibilities are endless!”
Ø And lastly, I’m ever so grateful for 2ND CHANCES (and often 3rd or 4th): This has meant so much more to me lately because I’m such a stickler for getting things right the first time – with practically everything. But I’ve looked at the decisions I’ve made and the ones I’m starting to make now and I’m so thankful that there’s this thing called “changing your mind” which works hand-in-hand with “learning from your mistakes.” I’m so terrified of making decisions because I don’t want to be wrong. I’ve forgotten that the only way to learn how to do something right is often to get it wrong first.

So there’s 3 things I’m thankful for. How about you guys?

Thursday, November 25, 2004

HOW MUCH YOU UP? HOW MUCH YOU DOWN? (and I don’t just mean gambling – you shop-a-holics know who you are!)

I’ve been meaning to blog about Vegas for the last 5 days but the entry kept getting longer and longer so I kept putting it off. But I’m done now. Have a sit – this may take you awhile to get through. I love that I talk so much, don’t you? You’ve probably read through J0emama and Rach’s blogs but here’s another POV for ya’ll!

This weekend was…let’s see, how do I put this? DUDE I WENT TO VEGAS WITH MY FRIENDS IT WAS FREAKIN’ AWESOME! I had such an excellent time this weekend that I warned Riann that the blog entry about it would probably take up like 10 screens! But I’ll try to be brief (and coherent because I’m feeling pretty crappy right now and my mind is a little compromised).


Friday morning was quite relaxing for the Town & Country bunch. The GET-YOUR-SHOP-ON kids aka NC-17 got an earlier start. Sorry kids (Joe, Koy, Randy, Rachele, Riann & Cile) for asking you to load up some of our stuff. We weren’t prepared to get the roomy van that we did. Next time screw it! 15 passenger van all the way! It was a quiet couple hours for the most part, with Matt taking the first driving shift and Eric sitting shotgun to keep him entertained. First cd of the trip? Snoop-Drop-It-Like-It’s-Hot Doggy Dogg. He has a duet with Justin on his new cd and I think we listened to it like 5 times before we let the rest of the cd play. The soundtrack of our time in the van was as random as you could get. We went from Snoop to Barry Manilow (with Matt going, “Dude, where’s Mandy!”), some Tagalog tunes, monster ballads, top 40 and late ‘80s & ‘90s slow jams. Eclectic I think.

After a couple hours at Primm where we finally met up with the NC-17 peeps, we headed to Sahara to check in. And upon our arrival, not wanting to waste any kind of time I guess, Matt & Joemama started rocking the shots. Shot after shot after shot…after shot before everyone else had arrived. When the other van got there, madness ensued! Our “rest-time” for the next couple hours consisted of various activities in addition to the minute by minute alcohol intake: pusoy dos in the corner, cigars on the balcony, cameras flashing by the second and the anticipated harassment of the poor and unfortunate few. But then the real party began…

Our Bar...
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Getting Our Party On…

Club Risque at Paris! We thought that with some passes Riann racked up from the concierge that us chicks were free before midnight and the guys would only have to pay a $15 cover. We were first in line behind the velvet ropes where we soon discovered an alternative to this option. The bouncer man (who, I swear, looked like he could be The Rock’s younger brother) talked to Cile and Riann and there we began it: bottle service baby! Upon entry, with a glass of champagne in hands, we were led to a U-shaped sectional and table with a “reserved” sign on it (which, by the way Randy smuggled! Freakin’ clepto!) right by the dance floor. We had a lady and gentleman bartenders mixing drinks for us, refilling the ice bucket every time it came halfway and checking on us every 20 minutes. Talk about VIP treatment! The best part of this evening? Everyone was SO down to party. We even got Rochelle to down 3 drinks! That was a feat in and of itself!

I can’t remember the last time I had that much fun at a club! It was hip-hop night, thankfully, so it didn’t take much for us to take over the dance floor. You know how we are when we go out. We swear we own the place! And this evening was certainly no exception. I loved that the dance floor wasn’t so crowded that the sweat of the person dancing next to you was all up in our faces. I loved seeing my friends so excited at the first beat of a familiar song like BBD’s Poison, Black Sheep’s The Choice is Yours or Tribe & LOTNS’s Scenario. Us old fogies still love our old skool! I loved Joemama’s nerve to request Rachele’s most hated song and then witnessing the contempt in Rachele’s face and absolute refusal to dance to it even after we sandwiched her in the middle of the dance floor! I loved that the dj played, of all songs on HIP HOP NIGHT, Sweet Home Alabama! But you know what I loved even more? That my friends started the line dancing to it! Oh man! Koy and I were busting up on the couch watching! I laugh every single time I remember the madness of that evening. But I smile even more because I remember how lucky I am to have the friends that I do. Very lucky indeed.
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Our 2nd day in Vegas wasn’t as hectic. The gamblers continued to gamble and the freaks with the shoe fetish continued to entertain their obsession. At one point in the afternoon, as we stood in the middle of an aisle at the Nike outlet, Joe and Randy are frantic about finding a “left shoe.” “HURRY HELP ME FIND A LEFT SHOE!” Oh my goodness, they must’ve searched through 10 boxes of the same style looking for a flawless left shoe to go with a flawless right one. Insane? Just a little. I found a pair of Nikes there courtesy of Riann and Cile’s keen eyes for my taste. $14.99 = $16.11 with tax! HELLO! WHAT A DEAL!

Shoes up the yin yang...
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We went to Sunday Vigil mass at the Church of the Holy Redeemer and then stood in line for the Bellagio buffet. It was about 7:00 pm by the time we sat down to eat and my last meal before that was 11:00 am – an egg mcmuffin! 8 hours I didn’t eat! How the hell did I do that! On the way back to the hotel, we stopped for gas where we realized that Matt can be a bad joke-teller. Please don’t ask him to tell you the one about the pirate. More jokes were told later on…mean jokes that I’m not even gonna get into. Matt, Joemama and Chris, you guys are terrible! Too bad we were all laughing! Ha ha ha

Get your buffet on!
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Later that evening, the NC-17 crew got all dolled to play games at Midway, while the rest of us decided to either gamble at Sahara (After a riveting lesson in craps by Edwin) or rest up at the hotel. Eric, Rea, Matt, Rochelle, Edwin, Stacy and I chose the latter. (Nap party in action!) Which was, for all intensive purposes, the right thing to do because of the sleepless night ahead.
After meeting up with NC-17 at Zuri, a bar/lounge at MGM, Edwin, Bobbers, Stacy, Matt, Joemama, Iya, Chris and I headed to Orleans for a late dinner and a seemingly endless night of gambling. Funny thing is, I was there with all of them for almost 4 hours and didn’t gamble one cent. Thankfully, the coffee I had earlier that evening kept me awake enough to walk back and forth between Chris sitting at one Pai Gow table, Bobbers, Iya & Stacy sitting at the Pai Gow table next to him, and Joemama and Edwin standing at the craps table across the way. Matt stayed in the van and slept all night. We didn’t get back to the hotel until about 7:15 the next morning.
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Snow Day…

Edwin and Stacy left a little before 8 am. After about an hour or so on the road, we get a text from them: IT’S SNOWING. What the heck! We look out on the balcony at the mountains in the distance and there was no mistaking it…snow! In November! In Las Vegas! After a buffet breakfast at Sahara and Joemama’s failed attempt to cash out (he sat down at the last second before we left. Geez!) we headed for home.

Snoooooooooooow! We couldn’t believe it! We weren’t expecting the mountainsides to be COVERED! And we certainly weren’t expecting for it to SNOW while we were on the road! 34 degree weather. US CALIFORNIANS ARE SOOOOO WEAKSAUCE IN THE COLD! Ha ha ha…just running from the van to the gas station to take a whizz was a task for us warm-blooded things, shivering galore!

Snow up in here!!!
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The weekend ended with a satisfying dinner at Thai BBQ on 3rd Street. And now here we are…back to reality. Here’s to our next visit to Sin City!!!

Good Times...
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Tuesday, November 23, 2004

First Light

I remember Cile telling me one day how I used to hate guys. No I didn’t, I told her. But then I stepped back and began to hear all these things I used to say and see these things I used to do that sure proved her right. Loving and caring for someone has, at times (actually most of the time) ended rather unfortunately for me (if I haven’t already broadcasted that enough). And oh it’s so easy to play the victim after the proverbial organ in my body has been shattered to molecules. Woh is me! No one loves me! It was a mighty horrid time in my life…and my poor friends’ lives who were attacked daily by my self-inflicted anguish (Thanks guys, you’re the best!).

For a long time I used these heartbreaking instances as hard-earned lessons of what can occur when you care about someone who doesn’t care about you in the same way. I reminded myself everyday of that horrible feeling and vowed NEVER EVER to let that happen to me again. In effect I made myself over-cautious and hyper-afraid of everything around me that posed the slightest threat to my newfound view on love. I turned my head away from every possibility that I used to pray for, hating everything that had to do with this emotion that seemed so easily accessible to everyone but me. I had become what I never imagined I could ever become: a cynic, a pessimist – A NONBELIEVER.

I molded myself into this new role with the greatest of ease. I became uncomfortable around everyone whose eyes had been shaped into hearts and whose personas had turned towards this bright light of love whose rays never shone on me. I used jealousy and contempt to shun the greatest of emotions, more often than once unintentionally hurting those close to me because of it.

But what a joke this was! Because while I spoke and acted the part of the pessimist, inside I was secretly hoping that this really wasn’t me. I was irony incarnated, deliberately uttering words and carrying out actions which defied their actual meanings. I really did believe in love and that it could happen one day; that the happy endings in movies weren’t just images on the big screen, but events that actually happened in real life. I was just using this façade as protection from that which I was so afraid of: not ever being loved back. I was lying to everyone, most especially myself, and everyone could see that except me…until now.

I’ve realized lately that cynics can be converted too and that the one thing I was lacking in life wasn’t love, it was trust – self-trust. I couldn’t trust myself to be OPEN to the possibility of feeling for someone again, and that, my friends, was the source of my downfall. I was too afraid that I wouldn’t be able to handle hurt or pain of that magnitude if it happened again. I was so scared that it would feel a hundred times worse than before if I got fooled into being optimistic.

I’m not gonna lie and say that everything is okay now and that I don’t feel fear anymore because I’m scared more than ever. But I’m willing to see the courage I’ve got to face this fear that I often create myself. I’m not gonna let on that I’ve forgotten everything that caused me to hurt so much before because you don’t ever forget that kind of pain. But I’m willing to test my tenacity to feel this pain again, cry because of it but not be consumed by it. I’m not gonna say that the walls around my heart have been torn down and that I’m ready to jump the first opportunity that comes along. Those walls were quick and easy to build, although much harder to penetrate and destroy. But I’m willing to open the doors and windows if only to let the air of possibility back in.
Uncertainty can be scary, I know, but I heard somewhere that “Not knowing is the sweetest mystery in loving another person. And how much you can love is the greatest discovery you can have of yourself.” Discovery meeting mystery, there's a match made in heaven!

Sunday, November 21, 2004

EEEEEECCCCCCCKKK!...I just came from another funfilled weekend in Vegas and I'm feeling so sick! My voice is all hoarse from laughing all Friday night and I'm just tired. I shall blog about it soon and show you the 82 pictures I took. Dude, I can't freakin' believe I even took that many pictures! I told you my digicam's like my best friend! I love it! Ok, I gotta go get SOME rest. I was planning to call in sick to work, but I can't because we're taking our holiday cards picture and I can't be missing. That would be sad! PLUS it's Monday. It doesn't help that I have class after work either! Monday is going to be a looooooooooooooong ass day! I hope all ya'll recovering from this weekend's insanity will find this week much more pleasing to deal with since it's only 3 days long. Yay Thanksgiving!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2004


You know what's incredible? The number of times in one day I had to drive in and out of my garage. I got up at 8:00 am on Saturday morning (after having just gotten off the phone with Cile 3 hours before. That's right, we got off the phone at 5 am cuz we both talk so much! I love it!) because I had to drive my sister to the orthodontist in Carson. We got home at about 11:00 am, sat for about half an hour before I had to leave again to take Tin to basketball practice at 12:00 noon. THEN, at about 1:15 pm, Rochelle called because she and Matt were kinda stranded at the Mitsubishi dealership getting her car fixed. So I picked them up and took them to Matt's house. About 5 minutes after I got home, 1:45, I left to PICK UP Tin from practice. When we got home I plopped on my bed and slept for a good hour or 2 before I had to get ready to go to my Tita Cecile's house for a dinner. She and her roommate invite a few friends and family over every year and this year I got invited. I helped them get everything ready, cooked a little bit and I stayed there until about 9:40 pm. I went home, got dressed and then Tin and I headed out to Burbank to watch THE INCREDIBLES at 10:45 with the gang. FUN MOVIE! The funniest part of the evening though occurred before we even got inside the movie theater.

On my way to AMC, Rochelle called and asked me how far I was from the theater and I told her about 5 minutes, why? She advised that they had to save 12 seats and there were only 3 of them in line to get inside (her, Matt and Stacy). So I parked as quickly as I could and as we walked from the parking lot, I called Cile,

Me: "Cile, where are you? Rochelle needs help saving seats."
Cile: "Where are YOU? Who're you with?"
Me: "I'm walking to the movie theater right now I just parked the car. I'm with my sister."
Cile: "Ok hurry!"

So at this point I'm thinking oh crap, maybe they're getting seated already and Cile's outside waiting to give me my ticket. I get to the top of the escalator and there standing by the front door is Cile, Fantone, Kay, Patrick and Randy.

Me: "Why don't YOU guys go in already?!"
Cile: "Rochelle has mine and Randy's tickets and Gwen has Fantone's,Pat's and Kay. Gwennie's still parking. Where're YOUR tickets!"

We all start busting up laughing because we're all stranded in front. So we call Matt.

Matt: "Where are you guys! Hurry up there's only 3 of us in here saving 12 seats!"
Me: "Dude you have our tickets!"

So we're all like, what're we gonna do? Gwennie finally arrived but she still had to get the tickets from the machine because she ordered them online. 'Lo and behold, Mark and Christine get to the top of the escalators and no, we didn't greet them with warm hellos. Instead...

All of us, frazzled and talking at the same time: "HURRY UP GET IN THERE AND GET OUR TICKETS SO WE CAN ALL SIT DOWN ALREADY!!!"

Oh man, why we always gotta roll so deep!

Tuesday, November 16, 2004


Friday night marked one of 5 birthday celebrations for Iya. SorRY popular! We began the evening with a most delectable dinner at Macaroni Grill, complete with an operatic birthday ode to our celebrant. Bread dipped in oil and vinegar MMMMMMMM... Eeeks that’s so dang good! Too bad our waitress dropped Joe’s leftover plate on Rochelle’s head. Oh Bobbers, are you ok? Poor thing!

After dinner, we did the typical asian thing and took bunches of pictures in front of the new AMC theaters in Burbank. So tempted were we to take prom-like photos on the big staircase, but we settled for some goofy pictures instead. And then I dropped Edween’s leftovers on the floor.
=( Kasi naman! I was holding my leftovers, Cile’s leftovers PLUS Edwin’s leftovers. Hold your own damn food people! Ha ha ha…jk! He had like calamari and pork chops I think. Ops! Sorry Edwin. I owe you a drink in Vegas!

We ended the evening at Gitana’s doing what we LA peeps do best: have coffee, tea, and hookahs as we catch up on each other’s lives. Love it! Poor Edwin had to pay freakin' $30 cuz he knocked over a hookah by accident but when the servers cleaned it up, they didn't mention that it broke. Only after they gave us the bill did they mention that they tacked on $30 to have the hookah repaired. Geez! Anyhow, check out the pictures on the link on the left!


Monday, November 15, 2004


I took a personal day off of work today because I need to study for my payroll accounting midterm. Although, if you spent any kind of time with me this weekend, you'd swear the exam was in 4 months instead of 4 hours from now! But I'm studying as we speak (Geez, could've fooled your readers since you're BLOGGING ANNA! It's called "study break." It's a vast improvement from UCI days when our study breaks consisted of going to the beach, staying up until 4 am watching MTV and talking during finals week. It's a real blessing in disguise I'm not friends with anyone in this class). So ummm...why didn't anyone tell me I wanted to be a writer before this semester started? Then I'd be busy writing stories instead of learning how to fill out W-2 forms! Ha ha's ok. It's not totally useless information.

Anyhow, I must go back to my Form 941's, Earned Income Credit and the wonders of a 401K. Happy Monday everyone!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2004

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my favorite bed messer-upper ATE CYN!!!
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Friday, November 12, 2004


Why the heck did this week, these 7 days, feel like 7 years!!! Have a great weekend everyone! Be safe!

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Happy 6th Year Anniversary Riann & Joe!!!
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Wednesday, November 10, 2004

There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
- Anais Nin

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“Flowers are the sweetest things God ever made, and forgot to put a soul into. “
~Henry Beecher, Life Thoughts, 1858

I remember when I was 3 years old, my mom was teaching me the difference between what had life and what didn’t. She showed me flash cards of rocks, animals, children, etc and I would tell her whether I thought these things were alive or not. And I distinctly remember her showing me a picture of a daisy and I quickly responded, “No.” And mom, with that surprised look that adults give toddlers when they’ve done or said something perplexing said, “No? Yes of course it is! Flowers are alive because they grow…like YOU!” And the image has never been clearer.

Flowers are very much alive. Without all the anatomical complexities of creatures such as you and me, they too can channel emotion…or at least help US channel emotion. If there’s one thing that can express a hundred different sentiments, it’s flowers. Flowers say “I love you” to a special someone on Valentine’s Day, “I thank God you were born” on birthdays, “Congratulations“ for your new baby or your new career, "Good-bye” at funerals or the ever-popular “I’m sorry” on those rare moments of discontent between couples. Flowers can convey just about any feeling.

I love flowers! I love white roses that are barely open, so fragile and so pure. I love the simplicity of carnations, which have no visible centers but whose petals lie gently staggered on the stem. I love the flawless curves of plumeria and the open arm-like petals of hisbiscus, which will always remind me of beautiful Hawaii. What miracles!

Iya in the morning...
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Iya contemplating at Pearl Harbor: "Really? Am I really almost 30?"
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This is Iya trying to blend in with the wall at L & L
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Tuesday, November 09, 2004


Gosh I've been wanting to blog about like a hundred things but I haven't had the time! Soon though. I've got all these entries in my word files at work (probably soon to be read by someone in the office. That would NOT be cool!).

Anyhow, I hope you're all having a good week so far. Mine's been pretty good actually. I think maybe it's because I'm not Little Miss Whiney & Grumpy lately. Enjoy it while it lasts guys! Hee hee hee hee...ByeByeBye for now (My little *NSYNC tribute. I miss those guys!)!!!

Sunday, November 07, 2004


Our house is finally livable again! Today marks the last day I’m going to be cleaning up because of the darn remodelling and I can’t tell you how happy I am! I’M FREAKIN’ ECSTATIC RIGHT NOW! All the furniture is where they’re supposed to be. All the boxes of extraneous clutter have either been put away, given away or thrown away. Our closets seem fuller, yes, but much neater. And the floors and new paint look really nice. My next project is to figure out how I’m going to display pictures, posters and diplomas. It shouldn’t take too long, although I realized last night how I can be OCD at times. Yeah yeah yeah…I know I CAN be. It’s not bad to be organized right? So I like 90-degree angles and symmetry! So what? Too bad that as neat of a person as I am, there are times when I just can’t find ANTHING in this room!

Anyhow, after the morning/afternoon we spent cleaning, I went to mass and then headed off for yet another great evening spent in the company of great friends, delicious food and wonderful entertainment. After a gratifying meal at the Argentinian restaurant, Lala’s, a bunch of us went to go see a show by the Groundlings. It’s set in this small theater on Melrose, surrounded by restaurants and shops (with Pink’s Hot Dogs around the corner). The show tonight was one hilarious sketch comedy on top of another. This place not only host shows for ticket sales, but as a teaching tool as well. This comedy club/school boasts some popular comedians you’ve probably seen in film and tv, including freakin’ Pat Morita (yes, Mr. Miyagi), Jon Lovitz, Kathy Griffin PLUS SNL’s own Phil Hartman, Will Ferrell, Cheri Oteri, Chris Parnell, Maya Rudolph, Ana Gastyer, Julia Sweeney and Seth Meyer. I think they’re so amazing! It’s not easy to make people laugh. Actually, I’ve heard a lot of actors say that it’s much easier to make someone cry than it is to make them cackle. And cackle they did make the audience do tonight.

After Groundlings, we walked 4 blocks back to our car from Stir Crazy, this coffee place we got a chance to sit, talk and analyze each other’s goings-on. On the way, a police car whizzes by, a helicopter is literally circling the area, and this guy walking with us across the street from Bungalow club is holding a t-shirt to his left ear and neck because was bleeding. So…the nosey people that we are, the 10 of us stood there across the street where the cops apprehended this other guy and sirened their way out. And then when I got to my car I discovered that I had gotten a $40 parking ticket. Oh well, what can I do? That’s what I get for not reading signs more carefully. Anyhow, it was a fun evening! Thanks everyone! Tomorrow, Sunday I tackle some accounting homework and an accounting project. Gee, I can’t wait…

Friday, November 05, 2004



Before all this crazy election week happened, I had a funfilled weekend! On Friday night we had to pick up my aunt, uncle and cousin at the airport. They arrived here from New York to stopover before they had to head back to the Philippines the next evening. We got to hang out for less than 24 hours, but every little minute we were doing something together so it was ok. My mom and I took them to the DSW at Paseo Colorado to go shoe shopping. I’m not much of a shoe person, but dude! When you’re there you wanna like try on everything you think would look good on you! actually there are these adidas sneakers I saw in a store up north like 2 months ago and I’ve been looking for them ALL OVER THE PLACE! No luck though…

Mexican Food & Bowling

That Saturday night, we celebrated Ate Tin-Tin’s birthday at a Mexican restaurant in Orange called “Moreno’s.” My sister and I shared a tamale/cheese enchilada combo, complete with Spanish rice and beans…mmmmmm, heart attack on a plate! Loved it! The atmosphere was truly authentic. No sign of wannabe Mexican flavor a la Chevy’s here. There was a mariachi band walking around the restaurant (from the patio to the inside) playing everything from traditional mariachi sounds to, get this, “It’s A Small World,” much to the pleasure of a buzzed Ate Tin-Tin, who, by the end of the dinner had on the natural eye shadow that appears when she’s had too much alcohol.

With our stomachs filled and our moods uplifted with each other’s mere company, we headed to Concourse Lanes for some bowling. Cile, Joe and I were filled with nostalgia! Us “LA Peeps” went through a bit of a bowling phase back in college (Gee, THAT doesn’t sound too great!). We used to be at Hollywood Lanes at least 2-3 times a week! And it used to be open 24/7 so we’d be bowling at like 1 in the morning! Anyhow, I digress. Saturday’s bowling was just as fun! The best I did was a spare in the 7th frame of the 2nd game! HALLO!!!! I averaged about 7-8 pins per frame and pretty much romalioed the rest (FYI: “ROMALIO!” is a term we yell for people who bowl gutters). Anyhow, at 10:30 the alley turned off most of the lights and played some music, so we bowled AND shook our booties to Christina Aguilera, Blackeyed Peas and some other hip hoppin’ sounds. HOW FUN IS THAT! Everyone was getting all crazy! Jason (aka Lusty) and Jean seriously thought they were at a club dancing and drinking on the side; Isa and I were doing cheers and Kay was doing one of her famous dances. By the way, Kay and Pat? M.F.E.O. (That’s from Sleepless in Seattle. Look it up if you don’t know what it means) Anyhow, please ask her to dance for you when you see her. Ha ha ha…I’m laughing just thinking about it right now! Anyhow, the evening ended with Ate opening up her gifts galore, which included a yoga mat, coffee maker, Pepperdine sweatshirt and license plate frame, coffee, the Mulan dvd and a gift certificate to BJ’s. Hooray! (Click to see pictures on the side!)

Halloween on Santa Monica Blvd

I’ve never really been the celebrate-and-get-all-crazy-on-Halloween kind of gal. Actually, we’ve only just barely started participating in Halloween festivities these last few years. But I don’t think you can say you’ve celebrated All Hallows Eve until you’ve spent it in LA. We began the evening at Cile’s house giving out candy to the dozens upon dozens of kids trick-or-treating around her neighborhood. We saw all kinds of costumes and the excited look on all the children’s faces (the ones that weren’t covered with masks that is) really brought me the holiday spirit that I had forgotten about for so long. Everyone and their dog was there! There were like 2-3 sets of Fanta "girls," like 10 Britney Spears, 50 sailors and more I can't even begin to tell you about. (Click to see the pictures on the side!) Happy weekend everyone!!


Have you guys ever heard of stud finders? No, they’re not devices that help you find guys! They’re these handheld things that you guide along a wall in search of “studs” aka wooden planks. This is just in case you want to hang something on the wall but want to assure that you’re not hammering a nail onto drywall. Anyhow, since we had to paint the rooms in my house, we had to take down everything we had hanging on the walls. We borrowed a stud finder from my co-worker, Tony, so we could re-hang all our picture frames and coat racks properly. It’s a pretty nifty device and when Tony handed it to my mom yesterday, she was so fascinated by it. Just how fascinated? When I got downstairs this morning I saw my mom running the stud finder along the wall of the staircase and I was like, “Ummmm, mom? What’re you doing?” And she jolted like she got caught doing something dumb (which she was), so she was like, “Oh, I’m just practicing.” Oh man…

Tuesday, November 02, 2004


Hey everyone! In MTV’s famous words, don’t forget to “ROCK THE VOTE!” It doesn’t matter who or what you vote for, just vote! It’s one of our most unique privileges as Americans! I’m kind of excited and scared at the same time. I SHOULD have been able to vote in the last presidential election in 2000. I was in Washington, DC for crying out loud! How awesome would that have been? But my absentee ballot never came =(. It was fun watching everyone else around me be all crazy though. Ha ha ha… I’m just a little concerned because I still need to read up on the issues to make an informed decision tonight. Here’s hoping…

*Another funny Cile moment: So Cile, James and I were on 3-way last night and we were talking about the candidates and the propositions on the ballot. James is Canadian (as he will proudly tell you) so Cile asked him very innocently: “Hey James, in Canada, do you have a president like we do? Or do you have like kings and stuff?” hee hee hee…LOVE YOU CILE!

Getting to know...

Vitals: Met when I was a wee little baby in the Philippines. He’s my daddy’s daddy – 26 years and counting
Role In My Life: Stateside Grandfather – I’m one of the lucky individuals who have been blessed with the presence of both sets of grandparents for a good 25 years of my life. I’m so very grateful for this opportunity and Tatay is one of the four reasons why. I got to L.A. in April of 1982 when I was 4 years old and, aside from my dad who I hadn’t seen in 3 years, my grandfather’s face was a most welcoming source of familiarity in this strange new place that was to be my new home. For as long as we’ve been here, Tatay has been our daily pick-up from school, our source of laughter, our encouraging (although sometimes manipulating) voice and the head of our whole immediate and extended family. My aunts and uncles call him the “Godfather" because every time there’s an issue to deal with, everyone looks to him for guidance. He’s also an EXCELLENT cook and wonderful pianist.
Good Times: Tatay used to be the night auditor for the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in downtown so he would sleep ALL DAY and then leave for work at about 9:00 pm. I distinctly remember seeing him on the recliner like 24/7 and I guess it didn’t click to me until later on why. Anyhow, I learned how to tie a necktie because of Tatay. I used to “help” him with it before he went to work every night. He always used to ask me which suit he should wear with what shirt and tie and I chose ever so carefully with the greatest of pride.
In his own words: “Just try and try and in the long of run, you will success.”

Monday, November 01, 2004


I'm in class...Earned Income Credit...Wage-Bracket Method...blah blah blah...Hi guys! How were your weekends? Did anyone else have to work besides poor Joemama who might as well have not gone home Friday? Or Miss Rachele Mac who had to do report cards? Did you all dress up for Halloween? Ok, I guess I'll go pay attention now...=P Chat with you all after!