Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Off to La Union!

End of October and early November wasn't really that big of a moment for us in the family; our departed loved ones were buried in the provinces (Pangasinan and La Union - our parents' home provinces), and because traveling would cost much if we travel as a family, we just pay respect by lighting some candles come All Saints and All Souls Days.

When daddy died in 2007, we started traveling to La Union every All Saints/Souls Day to light a candle on his grave. About that year, too, an annual event is happening in La Union, giving us more reason to travel to La Union - Surf Break.

In 2009, I was able to attend the Surf Break with my sister Jessie. It was so great to be traveling and attending the event with her - when I was there the previous year, I didn't get to enjoy it that much because I was alone and because I am just a mere spectator, I was just there - sitting, walking, taking pictures.

This year, I am very pleased to say that sister will be traveling with me tomorrow, in time for the first day of Surf Break on Friday. She will just stay 'til Friday - traveling back to Manila on Saturday morning because she has work Saturday night. Well, even if it's going to be just a day spent with her, I am already looking forward to many pictures taken with her. I, on the other hand, will stay there 'til November 2, so I will definitely attend all three days of Surf Break.

The 26th will be the only day sister and I will be together in La Union (though she plans to travel back on November 1), so we have planned a full day of activities - eating out for lunch and dinner, as well as visiting Luna Church and the Pebble Beach.

28 to 31 of October will be lax days for me; setting a budget of p150 a day, I am already quite certain that my days will be spent visiting my cousin (and her little bundle of joy) or maybe read books - I plan to bring "The Nature of Water and Air"  by Regina McBride so I can finally finish it, then start reading "The Fifty Shades of Grey" books right after. I will be bringing my net book with me, so hoping for free WiFi I can grasp, I think blogging will resume for me. I didn't plan to travel that much - I don't know where else to go in La Union and that I don't think my budget will be enough for me to go to Baguio or Vigan, so I will just enjoy my staycation. :)

I still haven't packed my things, but I already prepared the clothes I will use for the Surf Break. It will be a time for me to get really dark, so no shirts for me - will wear sleeveless most days for this vacation, so if I get dark, at least my entire arms will be dark.

It still feels awful that I wasn't able to continue my weight loss program - even gained 14lbs since I stopped... but I know after this vacation, I just have to bounce back. Two cousins will get married early next year and I have to prepare for that.

Anyway, except for my luggage, all's set for this trip. I am already feeling giddy! :)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Tighten Up Your Triceps

Hey, hey, hey!

Last week, I still was feeling sick, but come Thursday, I started feeling better. This morning, I found out I gained back the 4lbs I lost within the last two weeks, that's because I started eating more than I did when I was sick.

While uploading images from January on my Facebook page when I saw a picture of magazine page I took while attending a food trip with blogger pals. I have completely forgotten I took this picture, so let me share this now, before I forget it again. Hahaha.

This was taken from Cosmopolitan Magazine (Philippines), December 2011 issue.

Triceps has to be one of the things I need to tone, so when I saw this while flipping the pages of Cosmopolitan Magazine, I knew I had to take it home - by taking a picture of it, so I can do it when I get home. The image above was small, but if you wanna do the exercises, scroll down. :)

The Skiier.
1) Grab 3lb. weights, and stand with your feet hip-distance apart, knees bent. Lean forward about 45 degrees, holding the weights so your palms face your legs.
2) Lift both arms behind you as far as you can, palms facing up. Pause for a few seconds, then lower back to start.

That's one rep; do three sets of 10 reps.

Tricep Push-Up
1) Start up in push-up position -- abs tight, back straight, head in line with the spine. Turn your hands in so your fingertips face each other. This activates your triceps.
2) Bend your elbows forward, and lower yourself halfway to the ground.

That's one rep; do two sets of 10.

Chair Dip
1) Grip a chair with your hands about hi-width apart, fingertips facing your body. Move your butt a few inches in front of the chair, keeping your back and arms straight and your knees bent.
2) Slowly bend your elbows and lower your body slightly to the floor.

That's one rep; do three sets of 10.

Arm Twist
1) Stand with your feet wider than your hips. Hold one weight at your right side and one on your left hand, arm bent so it looks like a V.
2) Bend forward 45 degrees, rotating your torso to the right (your feet will naturally follow). At the same time, twist your left arm, and raise it behind you, palm up and elbow straight. Return to start.

That's one rep; do three sets of 10, and switch sides.

Four exercises for the triceps that would take about 6 minutes to do. Not bad, really... and since Mondays I will do exercises for the arms, I will include this in my list of exercises to do.

My sister and I will travel to La Union later this week, which means I might not be able to do exercises while I am there, but then again, that wouldn't mean I should waste the rest of the week, right? Now that I am feeling much better, it's time for me to step back on track.

What's in My Bag?

I am not a bag hag, but whenever I spot an affordable bag, at times I couldn't resist it, especially if it's something that suits my preference... this one, a cross-body body bag I spotted at a thrift shop. Normally, I don't check out the bag section of a thrift shop as often times, bags for sale are already cracked and flawed. Still, on this particular day, I chose to browse the rack (I guess it was the p120 tag that got me to check it out) for a buy-worthy bag, and seeing this looking good, I decided to buy it.

It's not a branded bag, but I did love the material (as it's somewhat waterproof), and the faux fur made it look expensive. However, one of the not-so-good things about me as a consumer, I sometimes get excited about finding "something that glitters" that I tend to forget to scrutinize it very well. The bag has some minimal flaws - not so good stitching, a discoloration at the back part, and a few parts not glued well. If this was a school project and I am the teacher, I'd think the student who submitted this bag either crammed or didn't give it much effort.

Even with the minor flaws, I still like the bag - after all, only I could notice the flaws; whenever I use this bag, friends and acquaintances always think it's a good looking bag. I always just remind myself of that common adage, "You get what you pay for."

My friend Jidhu asked me a question the other night on chat: "What's in your bag?" Instead of answering him, I decided to just make a blog post about it. :)

The bag above was the last bag I used, so it's the one that contains whatever items I own. Now that I have a few bags to choose from, I tend to switch bags every now and then, still containing these items, sometimes more.

In my bag at this moment:
  • a vanity kit. See below for further details
  • a book. In my bag I have "The Nature of Water and Air" by Regina McBride... this is a book that I am having a difficult time reading (I am always stuck somewhere), so I carry it whenever I travel - traveling within the Metro can last hours because of traffic. If I am at home I read a different book ("London Bridges" by James Patterson)
  • my camera. If you wanna know, it's Canon Powershot SX130IS, which I bought December 2010.
  • my wallet. A very old (now showing signs of age) Marithe+Francois Girbaud wallet (more details can be read HERE).
  • a pen. Right now I am using a pen given by a food company. It's black, by the way, which is my usual choice of pen color.
  • a small notebook. This unlined notebook was given by Ms. Carol Tan, owner of Carol's Texan 5 when we attended the first Bloggers Buffet at her restaurant. I love it a lot because not only was it handy, the cover is also made from genuine leather.
  • a St. Benedict necklace. Something my mom gave me earlier this year.
  • my cell phone. (not in picture, because I used my cell phone to capture the image above) I still am using the Sony Ericsson K800i, something I bought in 2007.
Seems a lot to fit in a small bag, but really... if you know how to properly arrange it, everything will fit nice.

See what I mean? *winks* The gap below (between the book and my wallet) is where my camera will be placed (I used my camera to take this image above).

About that vanity kit... I am currently using a Bath & Body Works vanity kit, which I bought at an online store for only p75. I am definitely not a make-up person, so inside my kit it has a spray sanitizer (Human <3 Nature), lipstick (Avon), lipgloss (Human <3 Nature), blusher (Careline), loose powder (Johnson & Johnson), and a bottle of cologne or perfume (Victoria's Secret).

The contents of my bag will change later this week when I travel to La Union with my sister, so maybe in the future I will create another "What's in your bag" post.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Movies to Watch

I am a couch potato, but I am more of a TV series person than a movie person. Once, a group of friends and I had a little discussion about several movies and for a moment I just found myself lost in the string of words, basically because I wasn't watching that much movies. Some movies I have watched in the past I couldn't remember much, so aside from reading books, I really want to watch more movies - not particularly at a cinema, though, I still prefer watching at the comforts of our home so I can rewind certain parts I didn't understand, or maybe pause it when I need to go get some water... oh okay, something to eat. :)

Last weekend, brother went to his weekly prayer meeting and came home with a lot of DVDs. Their host for the night has a huge collection of DVDs, and since my brother is having problems sleeping at night, he thought it would be great to spend his time watching movies, so he borrowed as much as he could. Some titles didn't appeal to me, so among the batch he borrowed, these were the ones I want to watch.

Australia (2008) Nicole Kidman | Hugh Jackman
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs (2009) Anna Farris | Bill Hader 
Knight and Day (2010) Tom Cruise | Cameron Diaz

2012 (2009) John Cusak | Thandie Newton 
Inception (2010) Leonardo DiCaprio 
Love & Other Drugs (2010) Jake Gyllenhaal | Anne Hathaway

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011) Daniel Craig | Rooney Mara 
Johnny English Reborn (2011) Rowan Atkinson
This Means War (2012) Reese Witherspoon | Chris Pike | Tom Hardy

Gone in Sixty Seconds (2000) Nicolas Cage | Angelina Jolie  
1408 (2007) John Cusack | Samuel L. Jackson 
The Number 23 (2007) Jim Carrey | Virginia Madsen | Logan Lerman

Bolt (2008) Miley Cyrus | John Travolta
The Tailor of Panama (2001) Pierce Brosnan | Geoffrey Rush 
Unstoppable (2010) Denzel Washington | Chris Pine 

The titles with strikethrough were the ones I already watched. A quick, short review...

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. A very entertaining, lesson-filled movie, but somehow I found the story short, in the sense that there was no proper ending. Well, okay the world was saved from the food storm... but what happened to the town?

Inception. A movie that needs proper attention as I watched it twice before I finally understood it well.. but this is now my favorite DiCaprio movie ever!

Love & Other Drugs. It's something that wouldn't make it to my "top movie list," but it was entertaining. Funny, sweet, and towards the end I just found it quite heartwarming. Good thing I watched it.

1408. Not over-the-top scary, but it was fine.

The Number 23. At first I thought it would be boring, but I was wrong. Now I know I prefer "serious" Jim Carrey movies over the comedy ones.

I am now thinking of listing all the movies I have watched... but I will start next month. Let's see how much movies I can watch in a monthly basis.