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Saturday, October 29, 2011

room for improvement

it must have been love...this desire that keeps burning, the itch that can only be relieved by pressing the shutter. i am willing to go the distance ( i'm a homey person, when i'm in nothing short of emergency can make me go out especially if its cold, gray and damp outside!!!), i do not mind crawling on fours, lying on my belly, get my white pants dirty ( tsk!! washing machine will not do the job well, need to handwashed it at the end!!), get myself wet from a fast approaching high tide because the camera is set for long exposure and i need to have that shot taken and be thick enough to suffer the odd stares from people who must have thought i was mad for taking a photo of a dried leaf on the pavement!!! i bear all those and more..oh! much, much more.

if i have gone through all those, then you can just imagine what the hubby has gone through for his unfaltering love for this craft we both come to love so much...Photography. he wakes up at the wee hours in the morning and drive miles away to get a glimpse of sunrise. he comes home late at night from taking a photo of a sunset ( sunset comes very late at summer time, the sun is still up @ 9:00 pm, you see). his breaks at work is spend going out to picture people on their everyday dealings with life - he is at the moment into street photography, amongst other things!. winter is the worst time and yet he still goes out there to capture each moment and freeze it eternally. and yes, he has gone through all those and more...much, much more.

we both take photography seriously and with ardent passion, he more than i. we will never be where we are now if we didn't push ourselves to be better. there were even a time that all you can see at home are books ( we must have borrowed all books available in our local library,lol!) and magazines ( they don't come cheap, you know!) about photography...him to learn all he can and me to look for inspirations. we make our own diffusers, snoot, reflectors and anything we can get away by DIY, we do. we both wish to travel more so we can show you more and learn more so you can enjoy the fruit of out hard labor.

above all that, we both believed there's always a big room for improvement. learning is a life-long process and we agressively in pursue of it, always. we appreciate all the thumbs up and the likes but above all we acknowledge an honest opinion of our works. we can only get better in what we do if we know where we have gone wrong.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Inching Closer to Edmonton

My sister called me with exciting news about her family. Their family wanted to move to Canada. Her husband is a very good mechanic so when they saw a job opportunity in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada he immediately gathered all his credentials and mailed out his application. After one year of waiting, notice came offering him a job with a set start date in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
This surprise changed their lives as many requirements were required to be completed in a short period of time. He needed a physical check up, apply for a passport, purchase a plane ticket, and most important he needed to find an apartment close to work. It would take a few months for him to obtain a drivers license and purchase a car, so he needed to live close to work and public transportation. My sister was worried about finding 'just' the right place so she asked me to assist. When I hung up the phone I went straight to this web site to find 'just' the right Edmonton apartments to live. 
Workplace so close to my brother in law's apartment
The apartment I found was within walking distance to work and two blocks away from access to public transportation. With access to public transportation it allowed him to buy groceries, enjoy a movie, and make life outside of work accessible. My brother-in-law adjusted quickly to his new job. He made a lot of friends and had visited couple of nice places in Canada. When the weather is nice, he would get on his bike and check the area around town. 
First time for him to see the snow and he had a blast. All of these are dreams come true for him and his family.
First Edmonton Winter
One year later my sister called me again with a much better news, she and the children will finally join her husband. I knew exactly that I have to look for a three bedroom apartment. 

 3- 4 Bedroom Edomonton Apartments in Winter

We were both ecstatic about this great news, we are now closer to each other and we can do more than just talking on the phone.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I love San Diego, perhaps it is pretty obvious. Though San Diego is the 8th largest city in the US and the 2nd largest city in California,

San Diego's Skyline

but it is as laid back as a small town.

CA Sea lavender lined Trail @ spring, Torrey Pines to Del Mar

A lot of times, when people think of a big city, what comes to their mind is simply the concrete jungle with little space to breathe in nice cool air, but not in my adopted city.

Sunset at Ocean Beach, San Diego

Despite having a population of 2,800,000 and being voted by trip advisor as one of the top ten beach destinations in the world drawing millions of tourists annually from all corners of the world,

Dolphins and Surfer @ North Torrey Pines State Beach

but still, there is always a space in this city to find quiet and refuge.

Sunset at Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego

I can go on and on why I love San Diego, but probably the very main reason why I love this city is that it is a big city that behaves like a country.

Cedar Creek Falls @ San Diego River Canyon

Sadly, I am afraid that one day, I may have to leave this city that I love, because there is no job for me. The unstable economy recently brought my city's school district to a budget deficit they probably never would have imagined, and as a result closures of at least 15 schools are considered. It is such a painful news to see this happening, which is not only limited to San Diego but across the nation. Presently, I am thinking of arming myself by slowly starting my own business, however, my most dreaded business-wise weakness is marketing. Marketing and advertising are important for any businesses to grow and expand, and I am not so sure if I would have the drive and talent to successfully market my product line. I can hire an Advertising Agency to help me promote and market the business effectively. In fact, even aspiring artists and talents hire advertising agencies to help them market themselves to the global world. How would I know which one to choose being a neophyte in this field? Hard to tell, but thankfully, online reviews and researches will help a great deal. Sometimes, I am thinking of letting go of this dream of putting up my own business and just simply move to another city where I would feel more secured with my job. But am I ready to leave San Diego yet? Crossroads.....

Monday, October 17, 2011

Transition of a Beautiful Day: Hiking Mt. Woodson

Start of Our Hike @ Espola Road Corner Lake Poway Road
Total Mileage: about 9 miles round trip from Espola corner Lake Poway Road. We usually avoid the $5 parking inside Lake Poway. We either hike much longer from Blue Sky Ecological Reserve, or from Espola Rd.
Change in Elevation: 2400 ft
Inside Lake Poway Park 
The mileage would be a mile less if we parked inside Lake Poway Recreational Park. But for us, a mile more means not only saving $5 parking fee but also gaining more cardiovascular exercise.  
 Oak Tree's Autumn Leaves
Lake Poway with Rising Fog and Sun
 Fogs Slowly Clearing
 Mix of Fogs, Hills and Sun 
(somewhere up and far out there hidden by the fogs is our destination)
 After about halfway of the hike
 Resting Means Photo Taking :) After 3 miles and 1500 ft climb
(with still a mile and about 1000 ft to hike up)
 Now Gaining More than 2000 ft of elevation, Looking Down our trail below
 My Potato Chip Rock ( it's a perfect blue sky up here)- after climbing 2400 ft
Come Sit With Me, Let us Enjoy Watching the World On High

 Layers of Mountains Looking Southwest from Mt. Woodson Peak ( at 2800 ft )
Pair Enjoying The Transition of a Beautiful Day, from Fogs to Blue Skies, from Sea Level to Up High......

Calgary Rentals

Moving to the beautiful city of Calgary? Have you checked finding Calgary apartments where rentals are divided into regions, thus allowing you to focus on certain area near your place of choice? Looking for a place to rent can be so much hassle sometimes if we do not know where to start. Usually, of course, we start with the place nearest to our work, and if possible, also nearest to our places of interest. It is nice to know which part of the municipality are we renting. Sometimes, we wonder why there is so much difference in the rental price for places that may be less than a mile apart, the reason always is the type of community or neighborhood. One can get a bigger place at a much cheaper rent when the area is considered to be not as pleasant as another area. Thus, it is always a big plus to know which area the place we are looking at belong to. The link above I shared makes looking for apartment or homes in Calgary easier. You can click on the area you are interested in, then, you can view the pictures, descriptions, prices of the rentals ( be it apartments, town homes or houses for rent) in the area.
The city of Calgary is in the province of Alberta, Canada. It is the largest city in Alberta and the 3rd largest in Canada. Jobs abound in this city, thus, a lot of people are moving in. Aside from jobs, Calgary is a haven for outdoor lovers, being near Canadian Rockies.
Dwarfed Aspens and Pines On top of Rocks
For nature and outdoor lovers, Calgary abounds with outdoor relaxation. The city is located approximately 50 miles east of the front ranges of Canadian Rockies. It is beautiful year round, but of course, it is not that too late yet to enjoy the crisp season of autumn in Calgary.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Facebook Mom

Guest post of the week by Deangelo Spencer

Last night I was talking to my mom on the phone and she asked if I saw that someone I barely knew in high school had gotten married. I told her no and that I didn’t speak to them, then asked how she knew. My mom, of course, was friends with the person on Facebook and told me that she’d seen pictures of the wedding. I couldn’t believe that she was friends with the girl who she knew only through me, when I wasn’t even friends with her on Facebook. My mother’s “Facebook stalking” habits are becoming part of my daily life. Ever since she got access to internet in New Haven, I swear that she’s spent all of her free time researching the social lives of people I know so that she can make conservation with me based on what she’s seen on Facebook. Don’t get me wrong, I love my mother, but I wouldn’t like it if someone else’s mother (who I didn’t even know) was looking through all my pictures online. I told my mom that I was going to have to limit her time allowed for Facebook each day. It may sound tough, but a daughter’s got to do what a daughter’s got to do.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Real Life Wonderwoman

Once upon a time in friendster days, I met this wonderful woman who taught me to love life even more each passing day. In our Salitype family, we call her Chay a.k.a Aligaga.

She is a fountain of youth and a real beauty! I keep telling her to share me her secrets for staying young and pretty.

Who can tell she has two beautiful grown up kids (and er, one adorable baby named Cottonball) ?
Apart from being a domesticated and caring mom, 

she is a supportive and loving wife to her Big Guy.

Nope! She's not a typical housewife! She is an accountant by profession.
And guess what?!

She is also an aspiring nurse! Isn't she an epitome of a real life wonderwoman?

On my way to work this morning, I checked my FB inbox and I was so happy to hear read the good news! Chay just passed her NCLEX-LVN board yesterday! This calls for a celebration so here I am, celebrating a blessed life with my wonderful friend with the rest of our TSS sisters. :)

Cheers to your recent success and more blessings to come!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Go Ricochet

Last Sunday, September 25, 2011, we went to watch the Del Mar Surf Dog Surfathon, world's largest surfing dog competition. The competition was divided into 4 weight classes: the small dog heat, the medium sized dog heat, the large dog heat and the extra large dog heat. The winners in every heat competed for the final prize. There were 80 dogs who entered the contest, and about 4,000 people lined up the beach to watch. We were only able to watch the large dog heat. Here are some pictures of the surfing dog participants in the large dog heat. Who do you think will win? All these dogs can surf alone, but I purposely included the members of their team who cheered on them. I do not know what the name of their team, but I will be calling them according to their color. 
 Team Yellow
 Team Pink
 Team Orange
Team Red 
Team Purple 
 Team Blue ( I was not able to take picture with his team)
It was very fun to watch these dogs ride the waves on their surf board. Of course, I right away cheered for Team Pink, because that is my color. It was not easy to take pictures though because what with thousands of people on the beach.
Spectators of Dog Surfing Competition
It was just hard to take pictures without people in front of me :( And if I move away from people, I would get wet, which I had no intention of getting wet at all since we still have to hike back to Torrey Pines. A lot of photographers however, had fun shooting with the waves and I believe getting wet.
I'm sure his camera got wet by the splashing waves
Photographing with a Waterproof Sealed Camera
Going back to the surfing dog competition-large dog heat, who do you think won?? All these dogs can surf, but they were judged according to the length of time they can ride on the surfboard, their poise ( they show confidence), their maneuvers ( they can manage to do some turns in surfing and catch wave) etc. Well, so happy to share to you, that the dog I cheered won :) Team Pink won :)
Ricochet- winner in Large Dog Heat
I love watching Ricochet because she looked so poised and confident surfing, and well, she maneuvers turning on the board too with utmost confidence as well. 
Ricochet Can Turn
Over-all though, Ricochet did not win the event, she was only 2nd when all the finalists from each category competed for the grand prize. However, I am so glad to know that Surf Dog Ricochet is a star :) She is one of the top 8 finalists of the American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards. She surfs tandem with special needs kids and people with disabilities. If you go to her Facebook Surf Dog Ricochet site, this is what she says for her description: " LIVING A LIFESTYLE OF HELPING OTHERS BY PAWING IT FORWARD, WHILE RAISING AWARENESS & FUNDS FOR HUMAN/ANIMAL CAUSES, INCLUDING ADAPTIVE SURFERS, SPECIAL NEEDS KIDS, K9 CANCER, AND ANIMAL RESCUE/SHELTERS. I SURF FOR FUN & WIN CONTESTS TOO! I USUALLY PLACE IN THE TOP THREE AT SURF DOG CONTESTS, TAKING HOME MEDALS...." 
Go go Ricochet, I admire your purpose of helping the disabled communities and raising over $100,000 for your adopted charity. I wish to see you tandem surfing later with special needs kids or people with disabilities. May your good deeds continue to inspire othes, and wishing you the best in winning the American Hero Dog Awards. If you have some time to watch how Ricochet turned into a humanitarian dog, watch the video below, I find it very inspiring that a weakness has been turned to strength! Indeed, there is no failure when we focus on what we can do, and that's what Ricochet showed the world!

T.G.I. Friday's

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of T.G.I. FRiDAY'S. All opinions are 100% mine.

Our family is blessed since our children are still living at home.  Spending time together as a family is important to us but with college classes for the kids and work schedules and evening commitments for my husband and me, it is difficult to have the quality family time we enjoyed when the kids were younger.   We came up with an idea to do something as a family one night a week and we called it "Friday Family Night".  We all made a commitment to make sure we will be home on Friday night.  It has been successful for many years and everyone gets excited and looks forward to our Friday night date.  Our activities are simple, things like going to the movies, eating out in our favorite restaurant, bowling or billiards, shopping, or simply renting a movie and eating pizza, hot wings and popcorn at home.  It is always fun to do things as a family and we are hoping our children will continue this tradition when they have their own family.


TGIF is one of our favorite restaurants. Jeff and I have been members of TGIF "Give me more Stripes" for over a year now.  We earn stripes for every dollar we spent and once we earn so many points, it gives us the option to redeem them for free dessert or meal item on their menu.  We dine out at TGIF at least twice a month and enjoy our personal favorites. I love their sizzling chicken with mashed potato. They serve it in a hot pan that still sizzles.  All eyes in the dining room watch as the servers carry my selection since the sizzling attracts attention. Jeff loves their barbecue ribs and loaded baked potato. The kids love their pasta selections with their flavored drinks.  We frequently eat at TGIF on special event occasions like Father's Day, birthdays, or graduation events. It is one of our favorite Friday night restaurants too.


Here is an exciting news. If you like TGIF just like we do, you can bring the fun of Fridays to your own home with the new TGI Friday's "Entrée's for One".  T.G.I. FRiDAY’S “Entrées for One” These are frozen foods available in most grocery stores in their frozen foods section. They just launched nine new entrée's to choose from - Grilled chicken Mac and Cheese, Prime Rib Stroganoff, Sizzling Steak Fajitas, Sizzling Chicken Fajitas, Cajun-style Chicken Alfredo (my personal favorite) Entrées For One, Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo (our daughter's pick) Entrées For One, Creamy Chicken Pasta Carbonara, Loaded Chicken and Cheese (our son loves it),  and Sesame Orange Chicken. My husband likes the Sizzling Steak Fajitas Entrées For One and he said it tastes like the one they serve in the restaurant.  


To check out the latest about TGI Friday's please vvisit: www.facebook.com/TGIFridaysFre... For a chance to win cool prizes including a home theater makeover, please visit www.facebook.com/TGIFridays  and enter the Fun Freezer contest  Fun Freezer contest  by decorating your freezer with your own unique style and upload the picture on Facebook. 


by Chay

Visit Sponsor's Site

Saturday, October 1, 2011

One Fine Day at Balboa Park

Balboa Park is one of the places I frequent whenever I spend my "me-alone-" time! Aside from Torrey Pines, this is the other place where I go to whenever I wanted to relax and feel rejuvenated by the beauty of nature around us. Unlike Torrey Pines though, which is more of a natural park, Balboa Park is the nation's largest cultural park. It is home to 15 major museums, my favorite being the San Diego Natural History Museum where I love to learn more about the history of our natural world. Aside from museums, it is home to major art, music and theater venues, and the world famous San Diego Zoo. It is also home to several beautiful gardens, my favorite being the Desert Garden. Perhaps, my love for the desert all started here in Balboa Park. Whenever I wanted to photograph butterflies, hummingbirds, and other birds that are not often seen along the coast, I would go to Balboa Park. Here are some pictures one fine day I spent at Balboa Park just relaxing.
The very last flower intrigued me so much because it is one stem, one plant, yet two colors! It's yellow when it is young, then gets dots of red as it gets older, and becomes beautiful red. For more information about Balboa Park, you can visit the park's site here

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