Tuesday, May 14, 2013

wat, u no likey? then changey!

I'm currently using Belle de Jour as my planner again this year. I actually have two copies, because someone gave one to my mom, then she gave it to me (she already had a Starbucks planner) before I could go to National Bookstore to get one, so I accepted. Then someone gave a copy to me, and my mom kept it to be even. But they were bound two different ways, and I kind of.. liked the second one better.

In the end, my mom didn't really manage to find a use for a second planner, and by the time I graduated I found an excuse to cross over from the spiral bound one to the smythe one. I told myself I'm doing it to signify leaving college, starting life with a clean slate, as my thesis planning and other things were documented in the spiral one. But honestly speaking, the smythe one simply just feels better in my hands and looks better to my eyes.

The cover, on the other hand, wasn't really my cup of tea:

I mean it's a good illustration. Objectively speaking, it's nice. But it just doesn't feel like it's mine when I look at the planner. So I felt an urge to change it to this:

I'll tell you about it, but first, a little bit of history between me and BDJ: 

I received my first BDJ Power Planner at sixteen (in 2007), from my mom's awesome + sweet boss/friend, (who's actually mentioned in the acknowledgments because her daughter was part of the group of ladies who created it hehe). Timing was perfect: it was so well-made and interactive that I got a hang of using a planner just in time for my first year at college. I never even properly used a planner beforehand (save for the really girly Avon free-date one I very sporadically used in gradeschool because it was cute and not because i needed it) and I can really say it was a lifesaver. I depended on it and it kept me sane throughout my really tough first year in college. (And I do mean tough. In fact, it was apparently much tougher than I remember. Apparently I called my mom crying during a panic attack after being left at my dorm. My mom mentioned it to me recently and I have no memory of it at all. Clearly was a weird + dark time, ew) ..UP was very different from everything I was used to. Apart from the culture shock, I was away from my closest friends and found it hard to make new ones. My planner felt like my best friend during these times.

So I hope I don't offend anyone by choosing to change the cover of the one I have now! I'm just way past my pink + black phase. It just doesn't feel like me when I look at the current cover design, and because of the roles my planners have had in my life since I started using them, that's a very important thing. If it is any consolation, I loved the pink + black on the 2007-08 ones to bits! 

I created a 4x4 cupcake tile image by googling "watercolour cupcake", choosing the prettiest ones, and tinkering a lot with MS Paint (i know, i know, i need to learn photoshop) which was the toughest part.. my background colour of choice doesn't simply fill in all of the spaces; not all whites are similar. so i had to manually brush around the cupcakes (leaving a very thin white outline) one by one, scale them to identical sizes, and arrange them in a grid.

I printed them onto sticker paper, doing a test print first:

and upon noticing that there's a fair amount of detail that has been compromised and that the background is a little too ridgy, i looked around for an option to print it in higher quality. i set it to "photo paper, best quality" and this is the result!:

infinitely better!!! i think it's noticeable even with these bad, partly blurry photos i took:

after....this photo is blurry, but if you look closely, the details of the watercolor still show better!
I was originally meaning to cover the whole thing with my awesome sticker print, but I really liked the texture of the cover underneath and the back was discrete enough, so I opted not to do the back. But I couldn't just leave it as is because it looked unfinished at the spine:

so i took a row of cupcakes and centered it along the spine, covering the spine completely:

et voila! my baby says it looks professional and i just about gushed and melted into the floor hihihi

i really shouldn't have written that thingy with my bad handwriting though.. then again that can be easily remedied.

I wish it was just as easy to just go change what I don't like with the rest of life, though. I'm finding it a bit hard lately. My sleep schedule is all messed up again and I haven't been exercising. But I have a couple of projects lined up which is nice, once I get myself to do them! And now that my planner is all pretty and cupcakey and feeling more like me, I'm going to find it easier to pick it up to plan my days and to generally enjoy my new-found freedom the best I can!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Chikun the hermit crab

To be honest I've been wanting to get a fish. But before I could even budget it, someone gave me this TIINY HERMIT CRAB. My 12 y/o cousin Covi kidnapped the poor thing from the beach we went to and just handed it to me after lunch.

I thought about it and decided to take him cos I have sand at home and it will probably die sooner if someone else took it and didn't want to. At least I wanted fish and can use that energy to care for it.

I named him Chikun which is just a weird way to spell "chicken" cos I just thought it would be funny to call a crab chicken idk.
At first I thought of looking for a big place to put it in and put it in this "transient crab condo":

But it was too small and he was able to reach the top:

Immediately the next day he got to escape. I prepared myself to lose him forever but looked anyway even though he was too tiny and could probably be too hard to find. But I found him under my bed! So I kept him for a while and cleaned the sand and the rocks and made a new mansion with a tiny toy dog house for shelter.

So this is where he lives now:

He's that tiny seashell under the bottom bottlecap. so yeah. Pretty big house.

I don't know how long I'll able to keep him alive because I'm no expert in these things, but I'm hoping he's comfortable. I wonder if he's even alive up there in my bathroom. (I keep him there cos they need the air to be humid apparently)

So yeah dat's Chikun the hermit crab now you've met, bye

Friday, May 3, 2013

We're almost halfway through 2013? Huh.

I feel that I sit here waiting for something to happen and yet when things are happening it still feels like nothing is happening. I have two hypotheses regarding why this is:

  • We don't recognize when things happen because our perspective of happenstance as we imagine it is a voyeuristic one and we just need to change our way of looking at the present moment into a more positive one/ first-person perspective
  • There is a certain kind of happening that I am inwardly craving for that hasn't happened yet
Maybe the act of mentally tilting forward a bit is needed to keep moving forward? Like a Segway.

But in retrospect, a lot happened in April and these first few days of May. At least a lot compared to the time before that. I finished my thesis and graduated, turned 23, started making stuff again, and we went out a lot more than usual:

graduation dinner @Comida China de Manila. Sansa got to run around off-leash becoz private room
we have the cutest parents

beech day (and night) #1
me this mornin: ready n armed for some mornin beechin
sum byutiful ledies. with my explosion of a face

afterwerds we went to Bag of Beans for nommage
before and during nommage. a wild nica appears ~~
after lunch today
(btw thanks to my tito leo and ate ling ling for the pictures!)

But maybe that's the thing. To be able to feel like much happened, I always have to mentally consider how much less happened before. On its own, my year hasn't really been very eventful. But dissecting that thought process even further, I feel the need to explore what my definition of eventful is. I feel that I measure my life a lot in comparison to other people lately. I've been feeling very insecure. I should probably calm down and accept that there's just a lot of talented people that I know and that nobody's laughing at me for not being able to be as good as them. Just me. Which has to stop, too.

I feel that a bit part of growing up in my case has been learning to know that people don't pay as much attention to me as I fear. If I laugh at embarrassing things I do, they will laugh with me. They don't care about me enough to focus on criticizing me. Deep inside, everyone just wants to get along.

Anyway, this month I have tasks to tick off my to-do list. And I'm sure that even when I finish them, I will not particularly feel like I did SO MUCH and that I FINISHED something. It will just feel like there's nothing overdue. At least that's how graduating felt.

My To-Do List for May:
  • medical check-ups
  • some girly maintenance tasks
  • learn to drive
  • get serious with yoga again
  • start either losing fat or gaining muscle or both
  • learn tarot
  • finish two books
But maybe that was because graduating was like paying off a debt, and these next steps I take are more like creating some savings. It's adding something to my life instead of just leveling a negative feeling. 

I have hope.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

a real new beginning

i figuratively did a lot of pacing back and forth in writing this one, i just couldn't feel as if i was in the right place to write about it. it seemed like it's supposed to be a huge deal but there's nothing out of the ordinary i could really write. so i guess i could just approach this by going straight to the point:

i've finally graduated.

the cross i've been carrying for 1/4 of my life has been dropped. i have an empty slate.

but somehow it doesn't feel so grand, and i don't feel completely light. i feel the pressures of having to make something of myself as soon as possible. but i'm trying to be wise about things. i will take time soon to really think of what the next step should be.

i'll post photos soon probably.

today we're going to the beach with family and i'm really excited. it's been a while.