August 30, 2014

How to Make Your House into a Home

If you're like me or my friends, you've moved several times in your life. I don't just mean moving across town or two houses down, I mean moving cities, states, even countries.

And if you haven't moved throughout your childhood and adolescent years, chances are you're planning to soon: for college or for your after-college ambitions.

August 25, 2014

City Walk: Paris

Having been fortunate enough to travel (part of) the world, I've formed an attachment to several of my favorite cities, leaving parts of my heart in them and creating memories that will last forever. So, in honor of these glorious cities and memories, I've decided to compile my favorite cities all together in tiny strolls down memory lane. This will be the first of the series: Paris!

August 16, 2014

The Farmer's Market

Our Fresh Haul

Being a vegetarian (and nurtured foodie) I love fresh foods. I mean, who doesn't? So today my mother and I journeyed to our local farmer's market! Living in the Philippines, we come across a shortage of fresh foods more often than not and that's why we love the Salcedo Market so much.'s one of the reasons anyway. 

The Salcedo Saturday Market is a farmer's market in a park in the middle of Makati, a city-suburb of Manila just a hop, skip, and a honk away from where we live in Fort Bonifacio (aka Global City). The Market itself is fairly sized with so many vendors selling cookies and home baked bread, homemade ice cream, Indonesian food that you can eat right there! You can also find ice cream vendors, fresh fruit juice, freshly-caught fish, vegan treats and, of course, fresh veggies!

This is Mom and I's second trip to the Market, the first was about a year ago. It's been far too long since we last went! Our first time here we met the man behind "Carmen's Ice Cream" an ice cream business he runs on the weekends, he has some city job during the week, and we tried some of his ice cream. We were immediately hooked, the stuff is so delicious and creamy and surprisingly low on calories (although we're not sure we exactly trust the label). We recently found a shop nearby that sells his products too so whenever we need a Carmen's fix we pop in and buy a pint of either Butter Pecan or Salted Carmel (yuuum). 

Our first purchase at the market was a bottle of homemade ginger ale that a small stall was selling. We didn't try it first, just took a chance, and then tried it after we bought it. It was delicious! Completely refreshing, tasted so much like ginger but it wasn't bitter. And you know I love me some ginger ale so it was a great first buy. 

Fresh flowers were available for purchase in many stalls as was freshly-squeezed juice. We got a cup of Melon juice, the orange concoction in the picture, and it tasted exactly like cantaloupe!

We came across a lovely pair of vegan girls that had a stand selling healthy, organic, and vegan goodies. We tried some of their dried Kale Chips and (despite the connotation everyone associates with the word 'kale') they were delicious! They were certainly different from any other chip, potato or otherwise. We also tried one of their power bar mixes and that was delicious as well. We ended up walking away with a bag of kale chips, two power bars, and peanut butter 'bliss balls' that we have yet to try but will be good post-workout. 

My beautiful mother in front of the market

My outfit for the day: a blue gauzy tank that I've had for absolutely ages, high-waisted Forever 21 jean shorts, a dolphin ear cuff with diamond studs, a midi-ring set from Wet Seal, and dove grey flats. Unfortunately most of the clothes are from past collections so they all aren't available anymore but you can find similar ones here (+ the same jewelry): (rings, shorts, ear cuff)

I chose the French Braid for my hair because it takes no maintenance once it's up (and I live in a hot country) and because it helps fill in the giant space of the lowered-back tank.

Our total haul back at the apartment

We got some really yummy blueberry bread, fresh tuna steaks, lotsa' fresh produce (look at that corn!), plus the ginger ale, the vegan treats, and the ice cream.

In addition to the three treats from Take Root, we also picked up some Lemon Basil cookies from another vegan treat shop The Green Baker.

Carmen's (Salted Caramel!!) and California Blueberry bread

Stanford & Shaw Brewing Company ginger ale (<33)

An assorted mix of tomatoes that have nice composition I thought
August 10, 2014

Sometimes L-O-V-E and S-P-A-C-E Are Spelled the Same Way

Ma bestie and moi in NYC last week

Having a best friend is, without any doubt, the absolute best feeling in the entire world. Think about it: you have someone who literally will laugh with/at you at 3 am when you're prank-calling your crushes and will scold you when you do something really dumb like walk out in front of a Budget truck because you weren't watching. Ahem. You have someone to make messes with, to make endless, spontaneous memories with, to chase after packed metro trains with!

Our relationship, Amrita and I's, is quite unique in the fact that literally I love her and I live on the other side of the world. It's quite challenging only being able to see her in the flesh four or five times a year (literally that's it!)

"But first, lemme take a salfieeee"--last summer, Waterside

It really, truly sucks not being able to see her the way normal besties see each other. It sucks not being able to go through High School with her the way we imagined in Middle School. It But, it's also quite a blessing in disguise-we have figured that out. ("I never understood why blessings wore disguises. If I were a blessing I'd run around butt-naked!"--Sofia Petrillo, the Golden Girls <33)

The blessing part is the same thing long-distance couples say: "the time apart makes whatever time we have together seem so much more special!" And it does! I mean, we don't go two minutes without laughing honestly. We both understand that if I had not moved away and we were together in Ashburn, we'd still be best friends because we're platonic soul mates, but our relationship would definitely be different than it is now. And I personally love the way we have it now--the sleepovers with pizza and horror movies and Omegle and I Love Lucy are like Christmas, treasures to be savored every time. 

The gorgeous best(we had the same idea at the same time)

We recently went to New York City for three nights, one of which included the One Direction concert! NYC is kind of a big deal to us, it's where we have planned on moving together after college since like 7th grade and the one place we haven't stopped talking about ever. I instantly fell in love with the city and have already left part of my heart there.

Anyway, besides suffering from Post Concert Depression after 1D (and 5sos) left the stage, we parted ways for another four month stretch. We've never been together at the time that I'm leaving for the airport so that was a new experience. Honestly, I felt like crying the entire way back to Manila for a cornucopia of reasons but mostly because I felt something "off", a feeling I have never experienced before about our relationship.

[*Disclaimer* If I start sounding like he-who-should-rot-in-hell, stop reading. Seriously.]

I finally gathered up the right amount of courage to talk to her about it after I felt a weird distance between us, weirder than the physical 8,000 miles. Of course, we talked about it and I realized I finally learned something I've always subconsciously known about her. She needs space, she doesn't like the clingyness. It may be one of our biggest differences.

I mean, no one likes too much clingyness or affection, that's just erg. But I realized something about myself: I was showering her with so much attention and neediness because I felt that she was pulling away and wasn't enjoying it as much. And that's completely her right, I was being really clingy and she needed a little sp a ce.

For some reason, this terrified me and I smothered her even more. It was a vicious cycle really. (this blog post probably isn't going to help the space matter either....) But I realized this and after I talked to her, understood it completely. No matter who you're in a relationship with, you both need your own space and if one person infringes on that and doesn't get that then it creates a real problem. I didn't get it then. I'd like to think I do now.

"If you hold a bird in your hand gently, it will stay. But if you squeeze the bird, its eyes will bug out and the pet store owner won't let you touch the birds anymore!"--Rose Nylund, the Golden Girls. 
Just because someone asks for space, or tells you that they need space, or doesn't reciprocate your lovey-dovieness all the time, doesn't mean they don't care about you just as much as you care about them. I mean, it certainly could and you should have a discussion with them about it, but in this case specifically it didn't.

I find this is a big problem with a lot of people in relationships (any kinds, best friends, lovers, parents etc.): they don't realize that giving the other person space and room to breathe isn't going to be the end of the relationship. In fact, it's helping it to grow.

The message that is always found at the end of my rambling? It's this: don't be worried if the person you love/are in a relationship with needs space. Space is natural, it's all around us! If you care about the relationship, and about the person, you'll let them have their space all the while understanding they still love you [insert your own emotion here if love doesn't apply]

August 6, 2014

Check Out My Photos!

This is just a really shameless plug for my personal Tumblr + my photos that I post on Tumblr. 

That's all really.

Check it out loves!