Decemblur So Far

I really wish I took my camera out of my bag more.

So many things to on my "to-post" list, but still don't have the time to actually post. Before the year ends! (Hahahahaha, which is like next week...)


Instamonth: November 2013

Sweet, sweet November. Went on a trip with my beautiful niece. Found time to craft by the sea! Had yummy treats. Turned another year older. So many baby dates. Learned more about calligraphy with friends. Did proper fangirling for Catching Fire. Went on a road trip. Got sick.

Can't believe it's already December in about 4 hours. Whuuut. Before you know it, it's already 2014.


Ten Things I'm Thankful For

♥ Learning a craft with some of my favorite girls in the world for my birthday.
♥ Salon perfect hair (haha)
♥ Handwritten birthday notes are always the best!
♥ Breakfast food for lunch and baby smiles and giggles for dessert.
♥ #kaladkarin dinners are even better with buy 2, take 1 promos on tacos and burritos.
♥ A lengthy late lunch with my DQs
♥ Staying up past 1 in the morning listening to my favorite songs and singing along with everyone in the room.
♥ Meeting the vocalist of my favorite band and giving him a card I made!
♥ A spur-of-the-moment lunch out and discovering a new place to escape to.
♥ Shopping for cute things and helping out at the same time.


Come By And See Me, I'm A Love Letter Away

It's been more than a week since I turned 31 and I don't think I've really written a thank you anywhere. But there is definitely so much to be grateful for.


This year was quieter than usual. There was a mid-day surprise by way of a paper wall of different birthday images (my favorite: grumpy cat with a cupcake) with messages from the Candy team and our Cosmo web neighbors. It seems like such a trivial thing, but anything handwritten—on a Post-It, on a cute Beatles card, on stationery slipped quietly into a present—makes me extra giddy these days. I taped my birthday notes on my bedroom door so I'm reminded every day how blessed I am. So that I remember that I'm surrounded by people who genuinely care for me.

Last night, I nervously went up to the vocalist of possibly my most favorite band in the world and handed him cards with lyrics from two of my favorite mae songs. I didn't tell him how their music became a soundtrack to my life, how I bought my ticket without knowing if I'd have anyone to see the show with, or how I've waited four years to hear him sing their songs live again. He signed the card I kept with "thank you for the love and support" and when I handed him one I wanted him to keep, he said, "You have to write something on it too." And all I had to say was this: "Thank you for coming back."

Let's write letters again. I think it's a beautiful habit to keep.


Instamonth: October 2013

Crazy how you realize how busy a month is at a glance, no? October was a happy mix of work and play. Also, the amount of baby pictures taking over my feed is making my heart smile!

If you want to follow bits of my silly life, check me out on Instagram! Fair warning: I take the occasional nail polish of the day photo, I'm totally the kind of person who takes photos of her food before she wolfs it all down, and I'm the best-worst stage tita.


Where I Wish I Were

Crafted by the sea over the weekend and hand lettered some lyrics to Club 8 (pictured) and The Weepies. Making some birthday plans and I'm super excited for something I'm cooking up with the Candy Girls and Alessa. Yay yay yay!


Ten Things I'm Thankful For

♥ Getting featured on my favorite local beauty blog! Kilig!
♥ Glittery nail date + new bottles to try out!
♥ Snagging the snazziest Karen Walker-ish sunnies
♥ Catching up on some of my favorite shows. Finally.
♥ Finishing everything on my to-do list (well, okay I had to work a bit Saturday morning, but after that I vegged!).
♥ Visiting my mom (:
♥ Seeing two babies: my best friend's and my old boss-turned-friend's
♥ Dinner and drinks of the non-alcoholic kind
♥ A restful long weekend
♥ Gaining a sister over the weekend (;


Made It Myself: Pastel-Colored Roses On Cupcakes

Ever since I learned how to frost cupcakes with my Wilton 1m star tip, I've been making my icing look like roses on top of my cupcakes.

When my friend Marla asked me to make cupcakes for her little sister's 18th birthday, I was wondering how to "dress them up nicely" for the debut. While I was mixing three different bowls of icing into pink, purple, and yellow, I tried to think of a way to achieve a sort of gradient effect on my frosting roses.

I scooped a tablespoon each into my Dessert Decorator Pro (the BEST thing EVER!) and continued until I filled it. When I started piping onto the cupcakes, I got exactly what I wanted! A purple-pink-yellow gradient magically appeared. So so so happy with how it turned out and now I can't wait to experiment more with colored frosting!

And because I hate storing leftover buttercream (and eventually forgetting I kept it in the first place then having to throw it out, anyway), I made just enough frosting for the 18 cupcakes with a few tablespoons left for the remaining 6. I frosted them Iced Gems-style and I have to admit, they still look pretty cute.

If you want to order cupcakes, cookies, or pies (I make an awesome Turtle Pie!), please like my Page on Facebook. (:


Instamonth: September 2013

Crazy how fast this year is whizzing past me. I can't believe it's already October! Didn't we just say hello to the new year? I credit this lightning speed to an incredibly long to-do list that never seems to run out!

Follow me on Instagram

September was an awfully busy month. September is a big month in the publishing industry. While most people have their fashown issues, we've got the Candy Cuties special. And for the past 7 years, September also means it's Candy Fair time! When I look back to the very first one (we had it outdoors!), I can't believe how much it has changed and yet remained the same. It's still a gathering of the sweetest Candy Girls, who go crazy over Candy Cuties and scream at their fave celebrities and performers. I'm so grateful to be part of a team that gets along so well, whether in or out of work. (: And thankful for the very appreciative readers who really let us know how happy they are after every Candy Fair. ♥

I'm happy to report that I haven't stopped making things with my hands. I joined Alessa's first hand drawn pattern making workshop, where we got to design our own patterns and got them printed on fabric! I made a pencil case for my new Sharpies (the workshop came with a set of 12!) plus a small pillow for my favorite person, Little Miss Mira. Also dropped by Mikko's paracord bracelet workshop (already attended the first) and made even more funky bracelets to add to my arm party. And last but definitely not the least, I got to attend Mansy's 3D Washi Monogram party at Moonleaf last weekend. I was a little bit ambitious with my piñata 'M,' but my efforts did not go unnoticed as I was one of the three winners they picked. Haha! Piñata M now happily resides on my office desk. Excited for a crafty retreat with these three crazies in 2 weeks!

Another thing of note for the month of September was my Hong Kong trip. Last year, I did a day trip with my cousin and her parents when we went to Macau. This time around, I got to explore more of HK with my friends Blanche and Mimi (who was celebrating her birthday that weekend). Our biggest surprise of the trip was Typhoon Usagi, who literally would not let us leave. We had to stay two extra nights (one of which was spent attempting to sleep in HKIA!!!), making it one trip to remember! I'm super broke (bahahaha), but my traveling feet are very, very happy. I work to travel and eat often, and looks like I'm doing a pretty good job. Hehe.

It's only been 5 days into October and I can already tell how busy and tiring it will be. But I've got a beach trip to look forward to, a baby to see today, and my birthday is in a month! I hope I don't forget to check back in before then. (:


Ten Things I'm Thankful For

♥ My four-month-old niece who makes my heart swell with joy. I can never not like a photo of hers.
A talented crop of teens to work with.
♥ Jeans that fit like you've had them for years. PS They're only a month old.
♥ Making a pattern to print on fabric and sewing a pencil case for me and a pillow for Mira!
♥ Getting through a level of Candy Crush. Sorry, I still play it in traffic no matter how many weeks I'm stuck on one level.
♥ Twirling in the office that ends in tears-in-our-eyes laughter.
♥ A fresh episode of Dexter that's waiting to be watched.
♥ Getting an Instagram heart from the songwriter of the lyrics you watercolored. Teehee! Never gets old.
♥ Being credited as a legit illustrator in a book! All my art-class-taking younger self's dreams have come true!
♥ The new Stars song


Sunday Girl

Music Monday She & Him - "Sunday Girl (Blondie cover)" from Volume 3

Tasty Tuesday
After my friends' book signing, we had ramen. Tried out this new place. I'm really not the best person to ask for ramen recommendations, because they all really just taste the same to me. Haha! Split this set with D-an and was so busog. But there's always room for dessert! Cafe Au Lait mochi on a pretty plate. It was gone in about 10 seconds.

Wishful Wednesday
Checking out new arrivals on the H&M website, hoping I can do a bit of shopping in 2 weeks. Hee. (Also hoping I have enough money, haha!)

Thoughtful Thursday

Fashion Friday
Unearthed a pair of saddle calf leather loafers from my mom's shoe boxes. The sole didn't crumble away when I wore them, yay! Also wore her fancy matchy watch with my dad (which is now in the custody of my brother). When I wear things she used to wear, I somehow feel connected to her. ♥

* weekly-themed post adapted from That's Chic


#ThrowbackThursday: UP Street

About three years ago, I joined my college org's alumni number at their 10th anniversary concert. When people find out that I used to be a member of the UP Streetdance Club, they don't believe me. HAHA! I have a very grainy video to prove that I am! Can you spot me?

I miss dancing.


On Being Original

In a world where there are billions of people churning out great ideas every day, it's very difficult to be original.

I remember as a kid, whenever I saw someone's nice handwriting, my penmanship would somehow morph into something that looked like that style. It wasn't something I did deliberately, I think. Maybe I just really wished my writing looked like that. d:

I'm not the first to do hand lettering or watercolor typography. But I really do love it. In high school, I'd give my friends their names in fancy letters to put in their organizers/planners. I try to make it my own: borrow words from my favorite songs, use my own style in writing (I've finally come to love my own, haha!). In the end, I do it because I enjoy it.

In the industry I'm in, the word "peg" gets thrown around a lot. What is it, really? From how I understand it, it's something you take inspiration from. Kind of like a guide on the direction you want your shoot/article/feature to take. Because who wants to make something exactly like what's already been done before?

What's your take on being one of a kind?


Made It Myself: Paracord Bracelets

I've been on a workshop streak with Mikko's I Try DIY. This time around, I learned how to make bracelets out of paracord. These bracelets are more stylish than functional, though. (:

Each participant gets a bottle filled with enough materials for six or more bracelets.

There's also a "buffet" that participants can "steal" from in the course of the workshop. So if you want to save some of your paracord for projects you want to do at home, go ahead and practice with the ones here.

This is what came in my bottle. 5 bundles of I Try DIY paracord (you can actually order these from Mikko's site!). Plus different types of closure.

We were taught how to connect two different colors (with a bit of Mighty Bond and a lighter) together. I didn't want to touch the heated glue so I used the pliers to join them together. If you do get some glue on your fingers, acetone will get that out easily.

Not the neatest, but good enough. Here's how you start the bracelet.

Learned two styles: the cobra knot and this braided style that makes a flatter bracelet. We were also taught how to close the bracelets two ways. One involved a bit of sewing, but you don't need to be a pro to do it!

Came home with these two new additions to my arm party. I still have tons of paracord left and I'm excited to make more bracelets.

If you want to learn how to make these too, just sign up for the next one happening on September 14 in BGC. More info plus sign up sheet on I Try DIY.


Instamonth: August 2013

I've been quite the delinquent poster. Thank goodness for the photo-a-day challenge for our website, I have (more or less) been posting daily on Instagram. It's not quite an accurate record of my daily activities, but it's better than nothing! Ha!

Today's the first of September, which only means one thing: Christmas is only three months away! I can't believe how fast this year is going.