July 19, 2014

Not A Surprise Anymore

Modesty aside, I’m good at throwing surprise parties. I planned and executed many surprise parties in the past for friends and family so I'm confident to pull the best Superhero surprise party for my husband’s 40th birthday. I messaged John’s friends and relatives. I also invited my closest friends because my birthday was just a week apart from John’s. I asked everyone to wear any superhero shirt since John is a collector of statues, novel books, figures, etc. etc. 

I had everything under control when my friend, Theela, messaged, "the party really is at 10 pm?" . John read the fb messaged for he thought he's the one logged in at the ipad. Boom! The surprise party is not a surprise anymore. I felt bad and sad.  Then came typhoon Glenda. Our mini garden was badly hit.  I messaged friends for a change of party time. Then on a Friday, my kids said they have a make-up class the next day, so I had to make certain changes again with the time. I was becoming more and more frustrated.

Sometimes the best plan is not to plan at all. On the eve of John's birthday, my high school friends dropped by at home. Gigi, Theela and Sheila ( who came with her son, my inaanak, AJ) were able to sit down and talk with my man. We had a few (okay, not a few!) but we certainly had a great time catching up.

The next day Nora and Lyn, and their respective kids, came early. There were no food yet, for I changed the time from 11am lunch to 5pm dinner. Unfortunately, they didn't get the message.   You see, real friendship is being able to adjust and accept those kinds of miscommunication. We still had fun, though they waited for the rice and other food to be cooked. 

At dinner time, friends and relatives came to celebrate John's 40th birthday. Although the others weren't able to make it because of the changes of time, I'm sure they wish John all the best for his 40th birthday! 

John with my Kuya Bob

"Sometimes you surprise yourself with what you can handle, 
and if you come out the other end with some wisdom, 
then it's not such a bad thing."
-Boy George

July 18, 2014

DIY - Multi Way Shawl

Shawl is one of the easiest, most generic gift you can give to a woman.  I have plenty of shawls given by my friends but I haven't used many of them lately. I frequently use the fuchsia and blue shawls only though I've grown tired them, too. With the use of thread, needle and recycled buttons, I came up with a shawl I call, multi-way shawl. 

Here's how to DIY - Multi Way Shawl:

1. Choose 2 shawls. Same color or same print shawls is more advisable for a leaner  and cleaner look.
2. Spread the two shawls on the floor.
3.  Measure the neck opening.
4. Stitch the buttons on both sides. Number of buttons is optional. I did just 3 buttons on both sides.

4. Sew three buttons on the right and three on the left.  You can choose to use 6 buttons of the same design/shape. I personally choose random buttons. I used recycled buttons of different kinds for a funky look.

Paseo Verde in Las Piñas City

Education is the most important inheritance a parent can give to their children, with proper guidance and right up bringing,  a child can never go wrong with his or her decisions. This holds true in   the case of these two students.  At a very young age they persuaded their parents to buy them a condominium unit at Paseo Verde in Las Piñas City.

A mid rise condominium located South of Metro Manila interest the two students, Doreen Joy Rosell and Maria Jessica Bello both students from FEU,  because of its unique features that Paseo Verde offers to its unit owners. The bike facilities and electronic bike charging is just one feature that the condominium offers, it also has park and play ground of its own located in its premises. Plus the certified accreditation by the Building for Ecologically Responsive Design Excellence (BERDE) and a member of the Philippine Green Building Council for its steps toward promoting a sustainable community.

Presently, the  awareness in promoting and living in an eco friendly place is the current fad among young people today. They want to give their contribution in protecting the environment and helping it in their own way.

One of the student said that “It is nice to live in a place where you can see trees and green grasses outside your window and gives you the feeling that you’re away from the city.” 

The other lass said “South is the place that are being heavily developed, soon it will or might become the new business hub, since most of the place in Metro Manila is already full. The opportunity could be right here.  And this is not a loss it could also be a gain for me, because I see this as my first investment.”

In the end, they are positively sure that after they graduated and find the right job, they know that it’s their turn to pay the rest of the monthly payment.

July 15, 2014

Picket Lines: Dialogues Between Eves, Among Eves and For Eves

Reading is my best companion when exhausted from the daily grind of life. While reading, I get to relax and be creative at the same time.  I like reading while lying on the bed for it relaxes my whole body. I put all my favorite books near the bed so I can easily reach for it anytime. Whatever is on the top, it's my newest book.

Adding to my collection is Picket Lines: Dialogues Between Eves, Among Eves and For Eves. Picket Lines is a coffee table book about female power and beauty expressed through poetry  and visual expression. It features 100 photos of women with poems written on their bodies. The book juxtaposes poetry on select women’s skin and images to make powerful statements about the lives of women.

Had I known the author - Kooky Tuason, prior to the making of this book, I'd be happy to pose and be part of  Picket Lines because this book represents women's beauty and courage in all forms, shapes, color, belief and so much more.

Picket Lines is a product of the author’s collaboration with photographers Niccolo Cosme, Tabitha Fernan, Mitch Mauricio, Katrina Pallon, and Nikkorlai Tapan. It features various women, many of whom are leaders in their fields and prominent in the public arena such as Sr. Mary John Mananzan, Fides Cuyugan-Asensio, Miriam Quiambao, Shawn Yao, Andrea del Rosario, Nina Ricci Alagao, Cecile Guidote-Alavarez, Love Anover, Jodi Sta. Maria, Lilia Cuntapay, Cynthia Alexander, Kate Torralba, Michelline Syjuco, Risa Hontiveros, Sonia Roco, Twinkle Ferraren, Abby Asistio, Gaby dela Merced, Giselle Sanchez, Sanya Smith, Mocha, Karen Kunawicz, Gloria Diaz, Aimee Marcos, Anita Linda. The images reflected in the book were intensified by the contributions of highly talented make-up artists and stylists.

Miriam Quiambao

Andrea Del Rosario

Rachel Lobangco

Sonia Roco

I cropped this photo. See more of Mocha by getting a copy of Picket Lines 

Gloria Diaz

Anita Linda

Get your copy of Picket Lines: Dialogues Between Eves, Among Eves and For Eves and get to help Women’s Crisis Center. For purchasing details, email mina@yonzon.com. You can also follow Picket Lines on Facebook and Twitter.

About Kooky Tuason:

She is a performance poetry artist, advocate and educator. Kooky studied performance art and trained under the British Council, then went on to share her craft and promote the art through conducting performance poetry workshops, performing in gigs, art exhibits, radio shows, schools, embassies and other venues. 

She has published several studio albums, Romancing Venus Vol. 1 (2005), Romancing Venus Vol. 2 (2006), and Bigkas Pilipinas (2007). She also co-produced an album titled “In Transit: Manila Meets Toronto” which was funded by the Arts Council of Canada. The Romancing Venus records were the catalyst in forming a sisterhood of female artists, writers, and musicians passionate about using creative expression as a tool for healing.

In 2007, Tuason launched her radio show “Bigkas Pilipinas” which ran for more than two years every Saturday evening on Jam 88.3. The show was nominated at the KBP Golden Dove Awards and Catholic Mass Media Awards for Best Culture and Arts Program. Playing spoken poetry non-stop during its time slot, Bigkas Pilipinas was instrumental in positioning spoken poetry at the mainstream level, and brought the art to nationwide attention for both enthusiasts and curious listeners.

July 14, 2014

iACADEMY Leads Innovation Campaign for Local Music Industry

iACADEMY in partnership with PinoyTuner, Radio Republic, Amplify, Vandals on the Wall and Ndfy today unveiled project PiLE—a local music search engine and sharing platform intended to promote the local music industry. Quite simply, PiLE hopes to give users access to an impressive database of Filipino music and artists, culled from other locally managed sites, as a way to keep up with a rapidly evolving industry. 

The changing landscape of the local music scene

As most things go in a world that is continuously changing, music also had to evolve. These radical shifts came with every generation. Where vinyl and 8-tracks once filled teenage bedrooms in 70s, cassette tapes came and took over in the 80s. Then came CDs and Discmans when the 90s rolled in. At the turn of the millennium, mp3 players and iPods were introduced. And most recently, if you are among the early adopters who were willing to abandon the way you have bought and listened to music for the last decade, you deleted your iTunes library and put your trust in the cloud. 

There is an undeniable level of convenience that technology brings to the way the world consumes music. But it comes at a price. The most glaring of which is how unprecedented access took away the tangible part of the music experience. 

It is not necessarily always a bad thing. Technology has managed to open so many doors for musicians to share their art and audiences to discover great music—even if it is at the expense of being able to rifle through liner notes or make mixed tapes. But it also leaves room for a lot of clutter to come through. The Internet is known for it, and the music industry was not spared. What this meant was that musicians now have to work harder to get themselves noticed; and for audiences, sifting through the clutter was now an inevitable part of the user experience. 

That being said, the local music industry has made remarkable inroads in its quest to embrace the digital transition and streamline content to offer thoughtfully curated Filipino music. Sites like Pinoytuner, Radio Republic, Amplify, Vandals on the Wall and Ndfy have become known as vanguards of the local music scene, empowering local talent and giving them a platform online where they can be heard. 

But there is a lot more that can be done—opportunities where technology and music can combine with social entrepreneurism to introduce Filipino music to a wider audience and highlight local creativity to the world. 

All in one PiLE

An idea borne out of the need to combine the school’s three main educational niches—computing, business and design—iACADEMY now seeks to fuse the school’s resources and address a demand, anchored on the universal language of music. 

PiLE is a local search engine and sharing platform that intends to promote the local music industry. The goal is twofold—to introduce more Filipinos to the unfamiliar and but no less talented musical acts from this country; and, to those who already recognize the promise of Filipino musicians, to give both audiences and artists a chance to thrive in this evolving digital landscape. 

Embracing ingenuity in a digital world

Despite its simplicity as a vehicle to empower the local music scene, PiLE is actually a first for the country. 

“Our role is to make sure that Filipino music gets presented to more people who can appreciate the talent and hard work that goes behind creating it. Involving our students in something like this also means they get hands on, practical experience for an initiative that is relevant and important to them,” says Vanessa Tanco, President and CEO of iACADEMY. 

With the support of the country’s top music industry players, artists, music enthusiasts and the altruistic vision of today’s youth with the technical skill to make it happen, the possibilities of how PiLE can change an evolving music scene is endless. The opportunity to constantly develop features to eventually create an ecosystem is present and it will never lose sight of the fact that it exists to celebrate Filipino talent. 

“We are trying to build a really unique but immersive experience for our students. And in doing so, we get to put the spotlight on something that is relevant to everyone involved…something that can truly shape our future and we can take pride in,” Tanco ends.


iACADEMY is a school that offers courses that cater to the needs of the industry by combining theoretical and practical learning techniques designed to equip them with the skills they need to thrive in their chosen careers. For questions and inquiries, please call (02) 8897777 or visit their official website at www.iacademy.edu.ph

(Press Release)