Thursday, December 30, 2010
This year has been a blast! I love how it started and ended. I was blessed with so many friends and got to go out of the country with my folks too. I also got to see relatives that I haven't met for a long time! My cousins are all in the medical field. Most of them are nurses, physical therapists and medical technologists. I on the other hand ventured into a different one since I am a Computer Engineer by profession. I still see them wear nursing scrubs every now and then. I am not surprised because they need this for work. It's one of the most comfortable things to wear I'm sure and mind you they come in different designs and colors. Fashion wise, they are not that far behind. I haven't caught them wearing anything bland last year and this year it wouldn't be the same.
I wore something similar a few years ago because they gave me one. I used it in lieu of my pajamas and it was really neat that I could sleep with it. Imagine they were all using it as uniforms and I was feeling so comfortable I got to use it for sleep! I want to bring back the favor though so before they all become so busy during the New Year's Eve... they can wear something new. The scrub clothing would really look great on them. I didn't have time to buy them anything for Christmas presents so this would do. They are expecting a lot of people to flock the hospitals this New Year because of the culture of fireworks in this side of the world. No matter how dangerous it may seem they all still do it. I hope there would be less of them this year so my cousins wouldn't be too tired when they go back on the 1st for lunch.
Happy New Year everyone!
Monday, December 27, 2010
Sorry guys I haven't actually posted much of my activities this Christmas Season because I was down with the flu the whole week. It was very hard for me to even look at the monitor or stand up or even eat because everything felt miserable. I felt really bad that I couldn't even get to celebrate with my family but I think I am recovering. I'm still sick but I'm getting there and hopefully after a week or so I'd be able to go back on my feet and write the hell out of this joint ha-ha!
I was planning to watch a movie later but I'm weighing my options since I don't want to go out sick and just chill inside the movie theaters. I better check myself if I can do it otherwise I should just stay at home and get some well needed rest. I also plan to go somewhere this year and it'll cost me an arm and a leg. I'll try it though... no harm in trying so they say.
I want to go to my friend's house so I can give gifts to my god daughters/godsons. A late gift is still a gift after all. I don't want to be the bad "ninong" when the time comes and they would only curse me after a few years LOL. Anyway, I'm back and that's great news to start the new year right?!
Thanks for staying guys, I owe you a lot! You know who you are! =)
Thursday, December 23, 2010
This weekend was really a good one for me. I had time to create new business cards for my site, my photography business and my day job. I've got an alter ego to say the least but I had to keep it that way so I would stay organized. It may look like I have 3 personalities but the clientele is different. I seldom have people who need services that overlap with them but if ever I do I try to still see if they would lean towards one or the other. I don't actually have that much thought put into the company name for the photography business nor have I made a logo for it but I'm trying my best to still represent a brand with just the name. This reminds me... I think it would be better to have my own Custom Logo Design now that I'm gearing towards making this an official brand.
My idea of still having the word "light" on it stays to pay homage to my Masters. I've been lucky that I was taught by the best in the industry. I have this certain notion of having my brand to be at par with what they have been doing in the fashion photography industry and I'm killing most of my shots because of it. I only want to release those which pass my standards and I won't second guess myself this time like when I initially used to a few months back. It was really hard to tell you the truth; but if I'm going to do this and do justice to what they have taught me I have to play the right game. I want to be represented with a brand that would stand out from the crowd. I want to be more than the usual. I want it modern and unique but I have to make sure it represents me and my work well. Maybe institutions like LOGOMOJO can do the deed; I'll try and see if they can help me.
What do you think I should call this then?! Do you have any suggestions?!
Play the video before reading this article. Come on now don't be a grinch! =)
It's morning... the 23rd of December and that's officially 2 days before Christmas. I haven't gone out shopping yet and I plan to probably dish out money for the kids since it'll be cheaper and less of a hassle. The not so grown up people might settle for what I can give them so that's not an issue. I didn't go to mass either to get a wish granted because as far as I'm concerned I'm kinda contented with what I have right now. I would have wanted more but that would really be greedy right?! Hell I've got a lot of plans for this weekend and I don't know what to actually do first heheh.
I'm taking this moment to thank everyone who supported me this 2010 and continue to be a religious follower of KUMAGCOW. You know who you are guys and I hope you make some time to stop and enjoy the time spent with your family these holidays as much as I do. I hope you all get what you wish for even if you don't believe in Santa Claus anymore because you have been naughty this year ha-ha! From my family to yours, have a wonderful Christmas and a happy new year!
P.S. Please say a little prayer for me if its not too much to ask. Thank you!
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Sometimes I wish there was someway I could get out of debt. I can't imagine how my life would be if I'm working just to pay an impossible debt. Doing something about this condition should be a priority so we won't be living salary to salary and end up only paying the interest than the actual debt itself. I'm not an expert but there are people who might actually do this for a living. Fixing structures and negotiating with banks is not on my resume but I would like to do this so I would not end up living a hard life. I'm still young but without saving a single centavo it would be impossible for me to become successful in the near future. I wish there were experts like J. Hass Group that would be able to help me do this. It would be a big help for those who do not know the runaround in this industry. I wouldn't want to end up being hounded by debt collectors like some friends I know.
Life is complicated and never easy but on instances that I wouldn't be able to pay for my debt I'd rather have them negotiated further so it would be easier to pay. Interest rates are too high these days and making the necessary arrangements to get these loans streamlined to a zero interest - payable in 6-12 months would be a huge help for anybody. If it would be a one time big time pay I wouldn't be able to eat or have money to work for the next month. My friends are already in this situation and I'm seeing them suffer a lot. Christmas is not an exception because they end up paying a little more because of our culture giving gifts to almost everyone we know. The bonuses simply fly out of our palms and next year we end up complaining that we're under debt more than what we used to be. Here's hoping for a year of freedom from debt! Here's to our dreams and aspiration too!
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
I've been working so hard my entire life. I am one of those middle class professionals that live paycheck to paycheck and couldn't even get a vacation. I haven't had one in 6 years. I was able to go out with my family with a measly budget just this last quarter of 2010; but I'm still paying for that now. Yes, its funny; but I got myself into debt. I'm still optimistic though since I got my bonuses I'd be able to pay for that. I've got several godchildren too to make matters worse (no pun intended my kumares and kumpadres!) so it wouldn't be easy on me this Christmas season. The deal is, I forgot one important thing...
I forgot all about ME.
You know that feeling that you sometimes get when you run out of money and you haven't bought yourself a single thing? I feel that every year. Unfortunately, I couldn't do anything about it because my priorities stay with my folks... and other people. You can say I'm a giver... and I fervently hope it doesn't sound so self serving; but I find happiness in that.
This time, I would like to be a little selfish even just for a while. I hope someone with a good heart out there gives me a NOKIA C7. Of all the things I could have asked for you might be wondering why right?!
You know when I started photography a couple of years ago I didn't really use a professional camera. But let me show you this:
Do you know what I used for taking these breathtaking photos? I used a NOKIA 6280. This was a trip out on the mountains off Zambales. I didn't have a DSLR camera then but do you know why I got into this art form? I used a 2 megapixel camera for these shots and they turned out great, how much more if I had a very powerful phone. Just imagine what images I can capture using the 8 megapixel camera of the C7! It was one of the few things that inspired me to take photography seriously!
I wouldn't have to worry also if I stayed in remote places since a fully charge C7 battery can last me around 2 days or more for stand by time. I can also dedicate 28 to 32 hours of heavy use with this unit for text messaging and calling. It wouldn't also bore me on trips since I can get 14 hours of pure unadulterated music play or 10 to 12 hours of WIFI surfing from any access point. I'm a social media expert and I need to be online 24/7 so this is indeed a good alternative if I'm on a break than bringing my 2 pound laptop along in my haversack traversing several mountains and cripple myself in the long run. The build is so elegant and thin I wouldn't be too shy to take out my phone in public because it's not going to look dirt scratched like the one I have now. I need a replacement obviously but I've delayed it for the longest time. If there's something else better it would only be a NOKIA C7. I'm impressed by the ease of use and faster operating system (Symbian3) as it can also run on slow processors hence extending the battery life. Saving MP3 music can also be a cinch from your message Inbox and can be done by simply going to Options > Save. For frustrated DJ's like me, you can simply line up your kind of music and use the built in transmitter and broadcast through your car stereos or music system since any external FM receiver can do the job! You can't even compare this with IPHONE because it'll play flash videos, a thing the latter couldn't do!
I wouldn't get lost with this phone too. The "pinch to zoom" for navigation software OVI Maps can take care of me if ever I do. Technology has really made things easier for people like me who sometimes lose sense of direction. I wouldn't worry that much because as far as Social Networks are concerned, this is the thing that can get you connected to the Internet lightning fast on WIFI and 3G. It can give you updates from Social Networks directly to your home screen. All their applications have diversity, function and relevance unlike others that just create them like hotcakes.
My wish is simple. I want the Nokia C7 phone because I love to keep in touch with family and friends. I love gadgets made with metal surfaces, glass and something that looks transparent. I would like to have a phone that has state of the art social media features that fits nicely in my hand, a good camera with a big clear display and a touchscreen. It will be my companion, I'll treat it like a friend. I want a phone designed for people. I love the C7 because it's like a window without physical obstacles to reach your loved ones, friends and family. If that isn't enough reason for me to get one this Christmas, I wouldn't know any other phone that could.
I make wishes, I have dreams and I still want to believe that someday, somehow, someone will get me that Nokia C7. This is my chance and I'm taking it! I'm thankful!
I just discovered something awesome! I'll let you in on this one guys because it's Christmas! So make sure you listen VERY CAREFULLY!
A few days ago, a good friend of mine handed me 2 cards. I was dumbfounded what it was for (but I had a hunch these were prepaid cards) though it clearly stated WINILA on the front. Of course none of the telecommunication companies was named like that so obviously it wasn't for prepaid cellphone credits. He told me it's a new auction site and said that I should check it out. I was like "Yeah sure!" then a little smirk here and there. Being the skeptic that I am, I wasn't really that optimistic that I'll win anything online. I got the cards out of my wallet the morning after my shift and decided to take a look around. Then I typed http://www.winila.com on my address bar. These 2 gals caught my attention. They said something very promising.
To tell you honestly I didn't really expect much and thought that I'll just be wasting these credits for nothing. I didn't want to just give up so I'll try my best to check out the best practices in the auction format that they have. That first day... I didn't bid on anything. I was looking at how the others were doing it. Someway, somehow I think they only bid when the counter almost ends. I thought initially that the more bids you have on your bank, the more chances that you are going to get that item. In some ways that maybe true. The latest generation 8 Gigabyte IPOD up for grabs that time and clearly everyone was gearing towards bidding on that item that costs 8 thousand pesos (or maybe even more) out in the market. Some of them went around 5 thousand worth of bids but they didn't win it (make sure you read and understand everything on the HELP page, lotsa tips about it there too!). What I understood from watching them was that you need to have the brains in this game... you need to have tactics to outlast the bidders no matter how much bids they have in their accounts. Most of the winners implemented bidding at the last second. It clearly was another "A-ha!" moment for me so I tried to do it the next day to somehow try and practice it in my head.
It was late in the afternoon that I decided to go back to the site and implement my plan. The hungry boy in me said that MAX's Fried Chicken gift certificate looked pretty darn amazing so I'm going to give it a try. When the auction started counting the last 20 seconds, I saw the bidders appear one by one on the same product page. There were about 10-15 people (or maybe more) who wanted it like me too. I was waiting for them to bid so I could feel who among them wanted it more. I thought about bidding once or twice but I was hesitating since some of the other guys were going back. It went down to two people putting in bids, the other one was spending a lot and the other was probably weighing if he could outsmart the first guy. After a few exchanges I was seeing the other one generously bidding even without finishing the allotted 20 second time limit. I said to myself "he looks like he's reaching a card's limit (because they are in denominations of 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 - which costs around P200, P500, P1,000, P2,000 and P5,000)" I was getting a hunch he bought 2 pcs. of the 20 bids so his maximum bid is 40. When the other stopped responding I immediately went in and exposed myself online (no pun intended) and make sure that the other guy feels I have lots of bids up my sleeve. When he got on the 30+ mark I saw him literally finishing each bid duration. It looks like I was right all along, he is running out of bids so I went all out. It was only incrementing 44 cents per bid. It took the second turn and VOILA! The clock struck 0 and my name turned RED. Confirming I got this one in the bag for measly 3 bids only. What a GRAND DAY! I can now buy the GC for only 87 pesos. Yeap you heard it right... that's only 87 pesos versus 500 bucks that I can use for any MAX's Restaurant branch nationwide!
I immediately checked out the things I won and had the option to buy it now on my screen. WINILA also sent a corresponding email confirming that I won the bid (isn't that convenient?!). Their payment system is pretty straight forward. You can purchase the items you won via these 3 options; Bancnet, Credit Card or Globe Handyphone's GCASH. I chose to use my ATM card and the usual bancnetonline.com payment screen comes in the picture. They use bank standard encryption on the line so you are SURE nothing goes astray. I paid for it then got the confirmation that it was successful! There are two arrangements that you can do to get the items you won. I emailed their customer service facility and got a reply right away that they can ship it to me via JRS for a couple of pesos or I can pick it up in their Makati office. Both were easy for me but I need to see this for myself (hence the trip to their office next week).
The next day, I logged in early morning and saw cellphone prepaid cards also being auctioned off. With a couple more bid credits still left on my account I waited for the auction to almost end. When it was at the point of going into the 2 second mark I immediately bid on it and got the top position. There were like 4 of us exchanging bids at that time and I waited a bit for some of them to lose interest on the bid. Sure enough, there were only 2 of them left at the last part. I did my technique again of waiting for the right time to bid and when I did... BAM! I WON 500 pesos worth of SMART prepaid load! So in 2 days I won the auction and still have credits on my profile. I couldn't believe it myself! Imagine what I got for just making the right decisions... I love this now! Not only did I get a 500 gift certificate on my favorite Fried Chicken Restaurant, I also got 500 pesos worth of SMART Prepaid credits. I thought I was unlucky not winning anything in our Annual Company Christmas party but this is just CRAZY! It's truly AMAZING!
I guess they were right all along... that in WINILA, you just have to spend a little and WIN BIG! I'm surely going to purchase more bid credit vouchers online and get my friends into this too. So my dear readers, if this testimony isn't enough proof of how lucky you can get on the site, spare me the drama and get me those bid credits. We can never tell!.... but if you get me some of those credits too I'll try my best to win some for you! You can start by simply clicking HERE to REGISTER! Believe me it's worth every penny!
Getting there at WINILA
I went to their Philippine office in Makati to claim the items I won. It was a short trip via the MRT. Just ride it until you get to the Magallanes Station. Go down and hail a cab to the Allegro Center (Chino Roces Avenue). If you feel a little health conscious you can simply walk there; it ain't that far at all. A short jeepney ride would suffice just ask to be dropped off Lumbang/Allegro Center... most drivers know it! =)
You can easily spot the building from Pasong Tamo Extension (Chino Roces Avenue). Here it is!
This is the actual building. Allegro Center!WINILA re-launched last 10-10-10 with a revamped site to say the least. There's a policy now where you can only bid and win items twice a week so you are sure everyone's going to have fair game. I love how this solves the problem of people winning everything just because they have lots of bids up their sleeve! There's a fair chance for everyone to win something every week!
The WINILA Philippine Office!
IPAD, IPHONE, Nokia Cellphones, Designer perfumes, watches and gadgets galore!I was at awe at what I saw there. IPODS, designer watches, cellphones, gadgets, cards, gift certificates... it was all spread out at the front of their office so you wouldn't miss it! It's just beside the bank.
It's so easy to get the item you won, just call and pick it up Thursdays/Fridays the week after you won the bid. I went there this morning and got the card I won! Signed the claim forms and got photos with the item too... they'll post it on the WINILA Facebook page so you really know there are REAL people winning these items!
Insider tip: If you also get a thousand bids per month (for 6 consecutive months) you'll achieve VIP status at WINILA. I also learned there are special perks if you become a VIP. You have to be one if you want to know! =) (but the 10% off the bid price is one of them!) There's also up and coming tie ups with the nation's lead game corporations so make sure you wait for that too!
I would like to personally thank the good looking Mr. Jeff Calilao, the beautiful Ms. Charice Ann Cenit and everyone at their Manila office for accommodating me in the WINILA this morning. Thank you also to Mr. Marcel Barthels because without you we wouldn't have experienced something as good as WINILA!
Thanks for the shirt too! ^_^
P.S. On 1/11/11 an IPAD unit is up for grabs so make sure you load up those bids and get that gadget everyone's been dreamin of! I'm gonna bid against you though! ha-ha!
(WINILA logos, images belong to their owners. Thanks!)
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Working so hard the past year I have been contemplating where to go for a vacation. The usual ones would be the neighboring countries in Southeast Asia but I've grown tired traveling on most of them. This year I'll be trying my luck on backpacking in Europe. I'll be going alone but I'll try my best to raise some funds so I can get my Mom to come along. This particular trip would probably involve us to France because she wanted to go to Lourdes (because she's a devoted Catholic) while the hopeless romantic in me would prefer a night or two in Paris (the city of lights). It's also one of my dreams to shoot from a countryside shabby chic cottage so I would like to find villas in France that we could stay in. We might decide to stay a week since we would be able to save a lot than by just staying overnight. I hope I can get ample amount of vacation leave credits so this would be feasible. I want to also experience the exquisite food they are known for. Oh I can almost taste it! I want to have my own villa someday too but this would be nice to get a feel of it! This is but a dream!
Paris is legendary for its nicest lights and the Eiffel Tower. Seeing the gigantic but beautiful structure towering over the city would be the perfect way to end this trip. I would like to also get inside museums and see the artwork of the masters. Shooting landscapes and a couple of night exposures in that location would be blissful for a photographer like me. I wish to have my own villa holidays spent in Paris and elsewhere in Europe soon. I'm making a list of the requirements for VISA and planning the itinerary now. There are other countries that we would like to include too since it would be relatively easier to travel on local EU flights. I promised to visit my brother in Ireland and this would be the perfect time to do so. I'll also have to ask him about Spain and a couple of cities there. I'll have to make sure my money is spent on the greatest accommodations I could afford and still have money to splurge on a little shopping in the other countries on our list. I wouldn't stop myself to just take the train rides too so I could visit the outskirts and see the places that most tourists do not have on their plans. Oh just thinking about these makes me so excited! I'll tell you about it when all of these push through next year. Wish me luck!
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Joseph T. Bismark's book The Gem Collection: A Compilation of Wisdom was formally launched in the Philippines last December 11, 2o10. With Mr. Bismark coming in to the country, it was high time that he also met his adoring Filipino followers. Bestsellers by National Bookstore was the perfect venue. I got there right on time to see the great man and his work. I was in for more.
The mood was light and quite festive. We felt that too because this was more of a celebration. His work has been seen in a lot of countries and admired by thousands of people. I was definitely at awe on how he was received by the ones who attended the launch because as soon as he started to read a part of the book, everyone was glued to their seats and I see a majority of them nodding in agreement (saying "Yesssss... Yesssss..." on some occasion) as if I'm watching a religious exposition inside the mall. To tell you honestly I've never heard of him (no pun intended); but he was one of the few guys who had his book mentioned in a post from Jessica Zafra's blog (of which I'm a fan of being a book lover) stating that he had his work on best sellers list; and by well known fact, he's a Filipino! I was impressed to say the least from the lengthy and worthwhile introduction; but what I was more intrigued about was, what's all the fuzz with this guy?! What did he do to gain such admiration from them? Is he really that good of a writer?!
I was a skeptic to say the least and after all the merry making we did on the event I went in and bought a copy for myself. I never review books that I never read; and in this occasion I had to find out the answer to my own questions. I usually only read EBOOKS nowadays and I thought this was high time I go back to the basics and read the actual one. From the "Foreward" alone it was all making sense to me. He wrote and compiled his life's valuable lessons. I was doing a couple of pages and finished it in around 2 and a half hours (maybe less). I said to my self "Wait, did I just finish that whole book that fast?!" because apparently it was a feel good no nonsense read. I immediately got to relate on some of the anecdotes in between and realized something very valuable. I already knew the lessons in the book... I just wasn't using what I learned from life the same way that he did. His remarks about getting THE purpose in life was one of the simplest yet ingenious things I should have done a long time ago. I guess I was looking around too much that I forgot to look how damaged I was to begin with, and that I can still do something about it.
The things related to management was perfect for people like me who are in the same industry. You'll learn how to handle people and yourself well in a couple of parts. I highly suggest this for young professionals who are starting out/making their life's mission statement. He made me realize what I was worth because as I read the things in the book; they were also my gems after all. I also realized that I was worth more than I thought I was... and how valuable living this life with a purpose.
In the end, I surprisingly learned a lot from this book. I now know why they felt that way when they read it and why they were so grateful about this man. Because in someway, somehow, his book would make you find your own gems. He practically gave all those people back their own gems. So that's why... I also found mine.
Get a copy of it in all National Bookstore branches nationwide. Oh and did I forget to mention, I'm a fan of his work now! =)