Sunday, December 27, 2009

White Christmas

My dreams of a white Christmas have come true. Today we drove up the snow-capped mountains of New Mexico to experience what yuletide carols describe as "winter wonderland." We were all wrapped up like burritos, my family and I. The sun was up and fiercely glaring, but you couln't really feel the heat. The air was biting cold. We hopped into our rented van with Uncle Fred behind the wheel, and drove off to New Mexico. We made a stop at the White Sands Park. Yup, you guessed it right. White sands everywhere - fine and powdery - like the ones you can find in our pristine Philippine beaches. The only difference was this place in New Mexico wasn't a beach. It was the desert. After a quick picnic lunch, we were ready to see some snow. My folks and I have never seen real snow before. So we were all very excited.

We could see the mountains from several miles away, their tops covered with snow. The drive up was truly scenic. We passed by pine trees, tall and majestic, with dustings of snow on the branches. Unfortunately, I couldn't take a good picture because we were moving fast. The best I could do was to take all the view in and etch it on my memory. It was all so beautiful. I felt like we were running through a forest of Christmas trees!

We made a stop at the entrance of the Lincoln National Forest, just before entering the tunnel. There was a cliff overlooking the rocks and the trees down below. Our Uncle Fred held our arms tight as we tried to look down the cliff. We took a couple more photos and off we went higher up the snowy mountain. Our second stop was at a park where people sat on rubber tires and glided down the snowy slopes. The view from there was breathtaking. Pine trees all over, and so much snow! My sisters and I showered each other with snow, and the little flakes felt cool and tingly as they landed on my cheeks and on the bridge of my nose. It was such a wonderful experience.

Plus, we were given a treat! We actually spotted deer! Uncle Fred said he had been up the mountains lots of times before but never saw deer. It was everyone's first time. I guess we brought Uncle Fred some good luck. We stopped by the road and took photos. We weren't allowed to go near them so our cameras had to do that for us.

We would've stayed for hours if only we stood the freezing temperature. But it was more than regular Filipino first-timers could handle. I wanted to make angels, but it was just too cold and I could barely feel my toes. We ran back to the van after a few minutes, to the warm sanctuary of a heater. But we had a lot of fun. A White Christmas experience that I'll never forget, that's for sure.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Awesome Disneyland!

We're spending the holidays in the US, my family and I. The first stop of our US tour was Disneyland in Los Angeles. It's such an incredible place! I can't even begin to explain how magical the whole place is. We spent two days at Disneyland and Disney California. During the first night, we were able to catch the Christmas Parade at Disneyland. It was spectacular! The last character that came out was Santa Claus. As soon as I saw him, I cried and waved happily at him. When Santa said, "Do you believe in the magic of Christmas?" I yelled out an emotional, "Yes!" I felt like I was five again, in a cartoon wonderland, where all wishes and dreams came true. Disneyland is indeed the (2nd) happiest place on earth. The 1st happiest place of course is in the arms of the man who's lovingly and patiently waiting for me to come home.

I'll upload photos soon as I find the time. Merry Christmas!


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Dear Pam..

I just wanted to say thank you so much for the colorful scarf. It's one of the very best gifts I got from a friend this year. Now you might say it's just a scarf. But you taught me how to wear one. You carefully thought of the right gift for my trip. That extra effort made all the difference. So, super thanks, Pam.y! I know I wasn't able to spend time with you this week. But I promise to bring home a Mickey for you. Big hug! :)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Christmas is friendship!

Christmas Dinner / Despidida at Congo Grill Tomas Morato. Jeje, we missed you!

...and being with people that make you feel cared for and special. When surrounded by true friends, it's just like having Christmas everyday!



Simbang Gabi started this morning. With barely two hours of sleep, my beau Alvin and I joined the rest of the BFQC community who were willing to wake up really early for the 4am mass. Alvin wanted us to catch the first four dawn masses before my flight to the US on Saturday. I love doing this tradition with him, so kahit puyat and pagod, go pa rin.

The Youth Choir sang beautifully this morning. There was a Christmas chill in the air. The church pews were all occupied by families, couples and friends. I couldn't help but feel quite sentimental. There was a strong feeling of positivity and togetherness among everyone gathered in the church this morning. I saw it as a manifestation of God's undying and unconditional love for us. After everything we've experienced this year - the recession, the calamities, the crimes, the hardships - here we were, healthy and alive and anticipating Christmas Day with joyful hearts. Because we know that despite the tragedies, God always gives us a reason to keep the faith. Families intact and hearing mass together, friends and neighbors greeting each other with smiles, couples holding hands. I remember glancing up at Alvin, and he smiled at me and planted a kiss on my forehead. The gift of love. The gift of family. God's blessings are overflowing. His presence ubiquitous.

After the mass, we had a picnic breakfast of puto bumbong and bibingka. I had a few minutes to spare before I drive to work for my 6am show, so we stood outside my house, eating with our fingers and sharing hushed laughter. It was the most perfect way to start the day. Makes you look forward to waking up super early again the next day.

Thank you, Lord, for this beautiful life. You are, indeed, so good.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

I am his muse...

...and he never fails to make me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world. Every single day.
Photography by Alvin Carilo.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Just got off the telephone after an hour of making kwento with my Tita Monette, my dad’s sister who lives in the US. We’re spending Christmas and New Year with them in the States. That’s why she has been ringing me up non-stop to remind me of the things she wants me to bring, the most important ones are magazines with Piolo Pascual’s photos. She’s in her fifties, and she’s still crushing on stars half her age.

I’m having mixed feelings about my spending the Holidays in the States. Part of me wants to stay here with my beau. We’ve been spending Christmas and New Year together for the past nine years. Walang palya yun! So we’re both feeling quite sad. It won’t be the same if we’re apart.

Another part of me is thrilled, though. We grew up with my dad’s sisters, Tita Monette and Tita Ayette, until they migrated to the US when I was in the fifth grade. So that was the last time we saw each other. I’m finally getting to see them again after 18 years! It’s exciting! Usually we just call them up during December 25 and January 1st. Now we’re actually going to be there with them to open presents or play in the snow!

For those who can’t physically be there with their families during the Holiday season, the best way to still feel their presence is to share warm conversations with them on the phone. I know many people resort to chat, YM or email to send their Yuletide greetings. But personally I believe that nothing beats hearing their voices on the telephone, hearing their laughter and cries of joy. Your PLDT Landline can give you that clear connection with your loved ones abroad. Not just during this festive Christmas season but all year round!

Now if you’re reading this from outside the Philippines, let me give you some good news. If your relatives here don’t have a PLDT landline, you can actually get them one. You can apply for a PLDT landline for your family here in the Philippines through PLDT Online. The good thing about this new feature is that you can get them a line from wherever you are, by just conveniently logging on to the PLDT website and clicking away. Plus, you get a 2$ voucher! It’ll be a really nice Christmas present for your loved ones here in the Philippines. Now they won’t have reasons anymore not to call you!

Check out PLDT Online now and surprise everyone back home with a “rrrring”!

Special thanks to the sponsors!

December is the peak season for hostings and celebrations and looking fabulous! So far, the two big events I've had are the Mossimo Christmas Party, where once again I hosted with my ex-partner Rye (of U92), and Wave 891's Urban Music Awards Jump-Off Party. My beau, Alvin, was the official photographer for both events. I have yet to post his shots. Here are some photos from friends. It's always fun to have a reason to dress up oh-so-glamorously! :)

The best thing about being a radio DJ - you get all the perks for free! Whee! Special thanks to Burgundy Collection for the fab black Audrey Hepburn gown and the hot pink cocktail dress. My pearls were courtesy of Accessorize (and courtesy of my dearest friend, Tita Mags!). And of course, my hair and maekup courtesy of Essensuals Toni & Guy. My makeup artist, Steph, never fails to make me look like a queen. Lots of love to my sponsors, for making my December all glittery and glam!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Wave 891's Urban Music Awards Jump-Off Party

Wave 891 is paying homage to the artists and the songs that make up the local urban music scene. The metro's most influential R&B station brings you the URBAN MUSIC AWARDS. The first of its kind in the history of Philippine radio.

The Jump-Off Party happens on December 4, 7PM at the Eastwood Central Plaza.
A gathering of all the nominees. One big party. One big venue. All leading to the biggest and most exciting event of 2010 - The Urban Music Awards Night.

The very first URBAN MUSIC AWARDS will be streamed live over PLDT MyDSL Watchpad. Wave 891 thanks its partners - PLDT MyDSL and American Rag.

It's gonna be a super fun show, so make sure you clear your calendars and party with us.

For a complete list of nominees, visit Vote for your favorite nominee for the People's Choice Award. Text WAVE(space)891(space)UMA(space)your vote and send to 2968.

See y'all. It'll be awesome!


Running on 2 and a half hours of sleep...

...and still running! Tomorrow is the big day - Wave 891's Urban Music Awards Jump-Off Party. We've been working on it for weeks now. Sablay a bit in some things like the billboards that were supposed to be up since Monday. We'll have them all raised up by next year na lang to hype the UMA awards night on January 22. We're now rushing things last minute, but I'm seeing good results so I won't allow myself to be a bitch of a critic, and just use what's left of my energy to squeeze the last few drops of creative juices outta my head. I'll stay positive. We'll give you an awesome show. We always do. Sus! Lovely DJs in hot, sexy outfits pa lang, panalo na! Tee-hee!