Monday, September 25, 2006

My Bad...

First, the good news: I won the Real Living Magazine Ultimate Shopping Spree last July. The prize? Thirty thousand pesos worth of gift certificates to Metro Living - a furniture store in Megamall, and another thirty thousand pesos GCs to Federal Design Expo in Makati.

Lucky me. I simply answered the question they posed briefly and honestly. They asked, "Why do you deserve to win the shopping spree?" And I answered, "Because for once I would like to see how it feels like to walk into a store, just point out what you want and come home with that item." Many a time, my DH and I fall in love with furniture in home stores, debate about it and we always end up with him saying, "I can do that myself and save us money." And because he is both an artist and an architect, of course, he can. Better in fact. But does it save us money? Of that I am not really sure. More often than not, the pieces of paper where I listed the expenses (a couple of nails here, some wood planks there...) have been buried under the dust and rubble in our garage, where he works noisily for several months on end.

So when I finally had the gift certificates in my hand, I was ecstatic. My DH and I decided it would be a good time to have some minor repairs done around our three-year old townhouse. Especially, since our plumbing has developed a major leak, sometimes flooding our second floor TV room. With my DH's permission (I didn't want to hurt his feelings), I am collaborating with one of his architect friends for professional advise and assistance.

The bad news: So finally yesterday, plans and a list of materials in hand, my DH and I went to the Federal Hardware. Mindless of the tag prices, we filled our carts with all the materials we needed to renovate the ground floor (living room, dining and kitchen). Only to receive the shock of my life at the checkout counter. It turned out that my GCs were not for the hardware, but for the furniture showroom. At that point, we couldn't really back out, not only because it was potentially embarrassing but because the plumber, electrician, carpenter are coming in Monday and they need the materials to work with. I reluctantly handed over my credit card. This was a cost I didn't budget for and I terribly hate being caught unawares. But it was my fault for not checking in the first place. Like I said - my bad.

So this morning, the workers are wrecking my second floor master's bedroom to find the source of the water leak. But only after they had removed the ceilings on the ground floor. Each thwack of the hammer on the tiles is a blow to my wallet, which is still recovering from my online shopping spree (see previous post).

So there. Another excuse not to scrapbook (too dusty and noisy). I was so hoping I could get a scrap room out of this endeavor but I am not so sure it will happen now with the unforeseen expenses. I will keep you posted on how the renovation goes.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Ordering Scrapbook Items Online

Temptation not only lingers in scrapmeets and scrapfests, but in cyberspace as well.

It really is so simple that it's very easy to get carried away. No matter that I told myself that I would not spend more than $25 (that's the least you can buy to get free shipping), I clicked and I clicked and I clicked and pretty soon, I had many items in my virtual shopping carts.

I cringe in virtual pain for the moment I receive my credit card bill. When I pay my dues, the pain will be excruciatingly real. It doesn't help that the bill will be arriving before my shipments do. So to make the days go easier, I'll just put myself in that happy place where I am surrounded by idea books, acrylic paints, foam stamps, cardstock and patterned paper. Or maybe I should just start scrapping and put what I have already hoarded to good use. Hmmmm...there's an idea.

I will not write how much damage this little online shopping spree caused my bank account lest my husband read this post. While I control my own funds, I will be out of a job by the end of the month, so my practical self was practically screaming - STOP! But I just have to have those things I ordered. Who knows when I will have my own funds to spend for my own stuff again?

In the meantime, can anyone tell me how to block and from ever appearing on my browser?

Monday, September 18, 2006

Philippine Idol Scraps

When Philippine Idol came to the Philippines, I was really excited. I am a big fan of American Idol - I scrapped (OK - organized my photos) to American Idol Season 5. I really looked forward to scrapping while watching Philippine Idol in the next 12 weeks.

Alas! It is not to be. My bet, Ira Marasigan was not included in the top four females. Neither did she make the last two slots in the wild card episode.

My connection to Ira? Nothing much really. I first heard Ira perform when she sang the national anthem at an awards program at the CCP. I always get goosebumps when I hear Lupang Hinirang sang beautifully a capella. Her soulful rendition moved me to tears. No kidding! (In college, Lupang Hinirang was the choice audition song to join the likes of the UP Concert Chorus or the Singing Ambassadors. If you can't sing "Bayang Magiliw", then you can't sing. Period.) And then at the dinner that followed the ceremony I got a chance to get to know her, albeit briefly. She is a vibrantly young and pretty woman, smart as a whip and full of self-confidence. And she has a beautiful voice, to quote Maestro Ryan Cayabyab.

I campaigned for her to relatives, friends, even e-mail groups. And testament to friendships, kinships and Ira's talent, they voted for her. Even before the voting officially started! (Thank you so much for your support, you know who you are.) But we were not enough to overturn the votes received by the other finalists.

I am not sure I will continue to watch Philippine Idol. It will not be an interesting competition for me because not all the remaining finalists represent the best of Filipino talent.

I am also disappointed at the judges. Only Ryan Cayabyab does his job well. Francis Magallona should say what he really means and not retract his comments because on second thought, he thinks he's being too mean. Hello! That's what you are there for. Comments like "I do not like the song choice, but while she was singing it, she was becoming the song." Duh. Remarks like those should end up on the cutting room floor. Pilita Corrales simply follows Francis' lead. She's being too nice. And what about that May-December repartee with host Ryan Agoncillo? Oh, please. Enough already!

Enough also of the regional calls for votes. This is PHILIPPINE Idol, not Zamboanga or some province idol. Enough also of the gimmicky "I am doing this for my mom, so she will be proud of me..." "I want to help my family." Please... Do it for yourself because you want to prove to everyone that you have talent. That you can make it on your own. Like Ira!

Oh (s)crap...Now I have to look for some other show to scrap to. This is one case where I don't want to put up with scraps or to put it bluntly, watch the tira-tira. Re-runs of House sound really good for my Sabado nights at this point.