Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Young Artist

This young very talented artist is not bothered at all by people milling and kibitzing around her as she draws her 4-year-old subject. She concentrates and focuses, as she listens at the same time, on her iPod. At first she sat quietly at a table then drew a gentleman sitting across the table from her. It impressed everyone, including me. The gentleman offered her a couple of dollars, which she refused, but relented on the insistence of the gentleman. More people came to her to be drawn and they all offered gratuity which she promptly took. In the end she made money enough to buy her 2 orders of quarter pounder combos at McDonald's.

She's 14 years old, the granddaughter of one of the guests at the Christmas Eve party. She likes to draw anime characters, the favorite of young people like her. She handled her pencil like a pro, stopping only to look at her subject and then continue to draw on the paper. She draws her lines fast, no hesitancy, no mulling...she's very confident.

At work and (background) her squirming, uneasy 4-year-old subject.

The finished likeness and the shy, unwilling subject.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Friday, December 22, 2006

Night Delivery

UPS man came a-knocking
At my door left something.
Lo and behold! What have we got?
A Christmassy looking box
It has some nuts
And other whatnots.
A couple of delicious red apples,
Some sweets of truffles.
Umm, said Mick,
As the chocolate he licks.
Love those pears and cheese,
He eyes them and gives me a kiss.

Thank you UPS man
Send my love to that friend
Who had sent...
The lovely present
As sweet as she,
None other than Nini.

Thanks my friend, I love it.

Psst. For perfect ball shape I used a template.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Five More Days and Counting...

And then it's that day, Christmas Day. Finally the most awaited day of the year will be here in a few more days . Christmas cards started trickling as early as November...then it came by deluge last week. Most came from former co-workers, friends and family. They came from all over the country and as far away as Australia and from back home, the Philippines. One of the cards that stand out most for me was from a young man, age 19. He's going to school right now, and for him every peso counts, but he managed to save some to get me one special card. His was the first to arrive.

Thank you, Esjay, the card means a lot to me. I know that it came from the bottom of your heart.

The card with a photo frame, has my friend's (Nancy) self-portrait picture, a mug handle accessory and a bookmarker.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Still Alive!

I’m still alive and kicking, just busy working on my Christmas cards to send to friends and kin. I’m doing the design myself and printing. But, it didn’t come out as I expected…I mean the colors. It came out too dark, not as bright and cheerful as I wanted it to be. It must’ve been the paper I used. There was no white Strathmore any more, so I have to settle for the buff color. I suppose the mixture of the paper color and the ink changed the outcome. I couldn’t change it anymore as it’s too late already. Redoing, reprinting would take time and they should have been in the mail yesterday, already!. I’ll just have to settle for what came out. Just another lesson learned on this one.

As soon as I finished printing them, I suddenly remember I have gold leaf, so I tried it on a few of the cards and they looked a lot better. But, again, I have to do it on each one of the cards. Forget it! It’s the thought that counts.


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I quit the chase.

The chase went on, but I quit. It went too fast for me... sliding down the hill. Vanity is what it is...but no more for me, my wrinkles are here to stay.

Here's a poem by Maya Angelou, describing herself...

On Aging

When you see me sitting quietly,
Like a sack left on the shelf,
Don't think I need your chattering.
I'm listening to myself.
Hold! Stop! Don't pity me!
Hold! Stop your sympathy!
Understanding if you got it,
Otherwise I'll do without it!

When my bones are stiff and aching
And my feet won't climb the stair,
I will only ask one favor:
Don't bring me no rocking chair.

When you see me walking, stumbling,
Don't study and get it wrong.
'Cause tired don't mean lazy
And every goodbye ain't gone.
I'm the same person I was back then,
A little less hair, a little less chin,
A lot less lungs and much less wind.
But ain't I lucky I can still breathe in.

Friday, December 08, 2006


Parcel post by USPS
It'd be there the soonest.
Handle with care,
Please do not tear.
Do not bump
On a hump.
Do not crunch,
I'll give you a punch.
Come what may
Bring to her doorway.
It'd be there by Monday,
If not maybe Tuesday.
Mr. Mailman do not delay.
She'd been waiting so many days,
Dreaming of it in so many ways.
Parcel post by USPS
It'd be there the soonest.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Can you read me now?

Mnie of yeras ago
Now taht fcae I don't konw.
Oevr the yeras,
Wlkrine hree and tehre,
Hvae cmoe and hvae not gnoe.
I ceshad,
It was a wtsae.
It pekicd up seped
Dwon the hlil lkie a seld.
I gvae up...
I'm gworn up,
And gworn old
Wtih so mnay flods.
Tehy are hree to saty
And I can say,
Been three, dnoe taht.

The poem above I posted as comment for Songs of Nini's blog. It's jumbled, but it doesn't matter in what order the letters are in a word, as long as the first and the last letter are in the right place. The rest can be a mess, but it can be read without a problem. The human mind read the word as a whole, not by every letter.

Try it here.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Out of Commission.

My desktop pc is out of commission. Its innards is now exposed and the computer geek is working on it. I have all my pictures, documents and other files there. Hopefully, it's going to be working pretty soon. I'm having a hard time with this laptop that Mick has lent me. I'm not used to it and besides I can't do much with this as all my programs are in my pc.

Getting to my email is another story. Spam mail would automatically pop up in a window, while here, a different ISP, I have to take a peek if my spam folder has any mail that wandered there. Aah, and there it is, one from a visitor on my blog. I want my good old mouse, not this little rubber thing stuck between the keys. It's so hard to navigate with it. I guess, I have to get used to other instruments and gizmos no matter how old they are. This laptop is obsolete by today's standards, but, at least, it serves its purpose. I should be thankful then I could still use something, be it old. Better than the ancient typewriter--the ancestor of the computer. How far then could I go with a typewriter? Far. I could go around the globe with a letter written in a typewriter, but getting there will take a long, long time. While an email will take only a few seconds.

It's almost midnight. Today there were sales in every department stores all over. I have not done any shopping...not a single thing, yet. Maybe, I should just hide from everyone so I won't have to get presents for them. Funny. I have started working on my Christmas card design. I finally have the idea on what to make. I did a rough sketch already, in pencil. Pen and watercolor, I think, would be the best media for it. By tomorrow, I could start coloring...hopefully there won't be any distraction.


Friday, December 01, 2006

At the Pier

Saturday, Nov. 25.
A stroll at the Redondo Beach Pier and International Boardwalk after a seafood lunch resulted in shots of our feathered friends.

A one legged pigeon, who manages to hop with his stumpy leg while it scrounges for food. I wonder what happened to it?

Sharing man's contraption, quenching its thirst.

A stork on flight.
Would it be bringing a baby to a new mother?

A casualty of man's carelessness.
A fishing nylon is wound around its leg constricting blood flow to its foot, which hangs limply. It hops around on one leg. This bird needs help, but doesn't trust man who gets near it.

Planter with red flowers on the boardwalk.


Saturday, November 25, 2006

Little Girl With Bike.

3 1/4" x 2 1/4" B & W Photo

This is a picture of me and the old house taken when I was about 10 years old. In the back of that house is the Pasig River where my siblings and I used to swim, fish and play. Lots of good memories with them.

3B pencil on 6" x 5" paper.

I've been trying my hand at doing figures and portraits and this is as close as I can get to that tiny picture above.

Days After

Turkey tasted better the next day, better than when it came fresh out of the oven. I had turducken for Thanksgiving dinner. It came by FedEx all the way from Texas ordered by Eddie. It was prepared, dressed and seasoned, all I had to do was pop it in the oven. I never heard of turducken till that day. It's semi-boneless turkey stuffed with boneless duck stuffed with boneless chicken with cornbread stuffing inside. Slicing was easy, there were no bones (except in the drumsticks and wings) and you get 3 kinds of meat in one slice. It's only now, days after, that I get to savor the taste of it. It was yummy, heavenly yummy.

Monday, November 20, 2006


Oil on canvas
16" x 20"

My patio.
One of my original paintings.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A Study for Oil Painting

Pen and color pencil on paper.
9" x 12"

This was a study for my orchids oil painting, but I abandoned it some months ago. I put the tablet of drawing paper away, and didn't think about it. Last night I thought I should do some sketching and as I flipped the pages of my tablet I was surprised to find a drawing there. I worked on it some more, brightened up the colors. I don't know if I should leave it the way it is or add a background.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Orchids for a Friend

Oil on canvas
20" x 24"

A request by a friend for a yellow orchid painting sent me searching high and low. I surfed the web; scanned house magazines; garden books and all reading materials I could lay my hands on, but none I could find. I was in a quandary. Finally, a gold colored one...with tinges of yellow and hues of brown. I painted it so there would be more yellow, some gold and brown. Finally, there's my yellow--not mine for long--orchids, soon on its way to the new owner--Nini.

Quiet Heaven
A poem by Nini.

Sunday, November 05, 2006


Oil on canvas.
12" x 16"

Oil on canvas.
12" x 16"

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Kids' Meal.

I got home a little after 5 PM. I’ve been out most of the day with some people; had lunch with them…and it was so funny that someone suggested we have lunch at Wendy’s. We got there and the 2 girls who ordered lunch first got themselves Kids' Meal. LOL. What’s with this kids' meal? For $2.48 tax included, there’s a hamburger, French fries, a small soda, a small cup of ice cream and a toy. I tried it myself, and I got chocolate ice cream and a Charlie Brown stuffed toy. I thought it would not fill me up, but it did. Kay, the skinniest of us all, got herself a side order of a bowl of chili for $0.99. Oh, wow, big spenders we were. But we had fun…we laughed about our lunch. We stayed for a while at the place then drove a few yards away to a clothing store to browse for a short while. Kay and her friend left before my friend and me. I didn’t get anything, but Jun got herself a new pair of white pants and a black sweater. It was a good buy for both the items.


I came back here after an absence of a few months. I've been busy replying to all my emails, which at times would number to the hundreds. Somehow a member of my string has been so disappointed with what's been going on in the forum, that she had totally quit posting. She had been lambasted, attacked, maligned and abused by other posters. They have been posting foul language; editing her postings with malicious, derogatory remarks. I feel so bad for her, but I can not help her. If I jump in the thread, I would get attacked myself. I just can not understand why some people are so vile, so vicious. I, myself, have lost the desire to post to the forum. I have been put on the list by these posters, though I was described as a mere negative poster. I have never posted anything negative to anybody--in our thread or outside of that thread. Other members of the string have been called names. I've been reading, but not replying...I simply want to stay away.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Pretty wild.

Gazania growing in my backyard, on the lawn where it's not supposed to. Pretty yellow color...striking, vibrant. Weed killer couldn't get rid of it...argh. It stayed there drenched with some kind of concoction, happily, sunning itself.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Still going...and going...and going...

At age 109, which he celebrated May 28th at the Food On Foot, Mr. Ronnie Fairbanks, of Hollywood, Ca, is still doing push-ups; still energetic and very alert. I was so amazed to watch him do his push-ups. Some people half his age couldn’t do what he did. He said his secret to his long life is lots of sex and lots of money. Read more of him here.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Three stars.

That's a pretty good rating for a review, better than some big budget movies of Hollywood. Cavite, a movie directed by Neill Dela Llana and Ian Gamazon, caught the eye of film critics. Check
here and here.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Fish were jumping

Last Saturday, was a warm sunny day in Redondo Beach. A good day for fishing; the pier was lined with people casting their fishing rods. Mackerels--the fish of the day--were being reeled in
every minute.

A woman prying her catch of mackerel from one of her hooks.

It's only noontime and this much is what was caught by this couple. And if they keep at it till late afternoon, they would get another boxful of fish. What to do with this much fish? Have a fish party-- fried fish, grilled fish, steamed, escabeche, chowder, fish soup and/or dried fish.
And after the party, one have had enough fish to last one a year.

A lone seal swimming by the pier, watching people watching. Watch out for those hooks! You might end up in someone's dining table. Eek! I've never heard of a seal being cooked or eaten (by humans). I've partaken of a grilled shark and it was good.

A red snapper at the fish store eyeing buyers eyeing it. "Don't stare at me, buddy. I'm not gonna buy you; I've had enough of fish for the day."

Monday, May 29, 2006

Photo gallery

Click on picture to view full size.

Mother and child

conjoined twins


Vegas Showgirl

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Tiffany's art gallery

Tiffany lives in upstate New York with her daughter, her son and her husband. Her husband is a professional painter; he specializes in portrait painting.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Tiffany's art gallery.

Today I'm featuring the art works of my friend Tiffany. One of Tiffany's hobbies is painting--oil, pencil and color pencil. Here are some of her color pencil drawings


Monday, May 22, 2006

Little Instructions

From Life's Little Instruction Book by H. Jackson Brown, Jr., the following are my favorites.

1. Compliment three people every day.
2. Watch a sunrise at least once a year.
3. Remember other people's birthdays.
4. Have a firm handshake.
5. Look people in the eye.
6. Say "thank you" a lot.
7. Say "please" a lot.
8. Be the first to say, "Hello."
9. Live beneath your means.
10. Drive inexpensive cars, but own the best house you can afford.
11. Buy great books even if you never read them.
12. Be forgiving of yourself and others.
13. Learn three clean jokes.
14. Ask for a raise when you feel you've earned it.
15. Return all things you borrow.
16. Treat everyone you meet like you want to be treated.
17. Make new friends but cherish the old ones.
18. Keep secrets.
19. Don't postpone joy.
20. Write "thank you" notes promptly.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Economy class

On the Flight to Frankfurt
Sept. 13, 2004

Like sardines we were packed.
Air turbulence--we rolled and rocked.
Food served on trays, tiny and cute,
But, it almost made me puke!
Chicken with sauce so creamy
Made my stomach queasy.
The food inside me tumbled,
It complained and grumbled.
Oh no! I have to go!
Line is long, hold before I let go!
Finally, my time has come,
I sit and poof!--it's gone!
Only air, sigh, what a relief.
Now I can relax and breathe.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Welcome to the World


There are 5 chicks here in the nest. This is nestled between the exterior wall of my house and the beam of my trellis in the patio. The mother somehow built it too close to the door that each time someone opens it, it scares her away. These chicks must be about a week old. In a few days I will take another picture of them, to chronicle their growth.

There was another nest on a beam of the trellis, but I think, the cat got to it before the eggs were even hatched. I saw broken eggshells, twigs and grass on the concrete slab of the patio. Another nest is hidden at the corner of the trellis and hopefully the cat won't see it.

I have no idea what kind of birds these are. They are ordinary birds; I see them in my backyard all the time. Last year about this time, there was a hummingbird who made a nest on my shell parol. It was just right in front of my kitchen window. I took lots of pictures of it, but...some of those pictures were lost when my pc was corrupted and it had to be reformatted. Darn! I couldn't get them as the files won't move...so the only way to make my pc work again was to reformat it. I have to let it go...all those pictures. Well, a lesson learned for me. I should've put them all on a cd as my husband had been telling me to do all the while.

Monday, May 15, 2006

One Warm Day in May.

The Old Mission of San Buenaventura

One warm day in May of 2005, I went to the city of Ventura, in Ventura County, California. This old mission somehow caught my eye. I sat at the bench at the bus stop and did a pencil sketch of it. I could have finished this in less time, had I been sitting farther away from the bus stop, as a bus would stop every few minutes and block my view of the mission. Anyway, I got pretty close to the likeness of the mission. Check it out here: http://www.athanasius.com/camission/ventura.htm

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Bird of Paradise

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White bird of paradise, in Redondo Beach.
April 29, 2006

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

50 miles away for spicy hot soup

Last Saturday, we, my significant other and I, drove 50 miles to Redondo Beach to have lunch at the pier. We do this on the last Saturday of each month; a
nd at this same restaurant; we order the same fair. We have tried other places and different food, but somehow, we like this the most.
The soup (above) consists of chunks of halibut, pre-cooked shrimp, slices of tofu, daikon, mussels, mushrooms and green onions and it's flavored with powdered chili pepper, which makes it very, very hot. The first time I had this my mouth burned and it seemed heat was coming out of my ears and nostrils. It is served in the same wok it was cooked so it's piping hot. With this comes bowls of rice and kim chee. After we had our fill of the soup we would walk the pier down to the board walk and stop at an ice cream place to have a scoop of my favorite rocky road.

The pier is usually lined up with people fishing. There was a group, who somehow didn't catch fish, but a big 10 pounds spider crab.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Room With A View

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Oil on 16" x 20" canvas.

The room is there and the view, but I've changed some things here. The existing door was an aluminum slidng door. I like wood French doors. I might as well paint something I like. The balcony railings are much closer, I spaced them farther apart to have more view of the background. The plants aren't there. I can't grow plants on the balcony, it can't survive the extreme heat; and I don't have breakfast in bed...those are props only.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Not Taking Shape.

I've started painting a still life (orchids) for a friend about 3 weeks ago. She asked me to do one for her in yellow. It's half-way done. I only did a little bit of it last week--one day of last week, and I've not touched my brush since. I don't know...it seems I'm not going anywhere with it. There is something amiss with my composition.

My friend sent me a link to the web site of Esteban Sabar Gallery. And, wow, the paintings on the site are truly amazing. These are works of painters whose life is art. For me painting is a hobby. It's only for my own pleasure and use. Although, there was a couple of paintings I sold to someone. The buyer was a technician who came to my house to work on our internet connection (dsl) He saw these two small ones and asked if he can buy them, and I was willing to part with them. I guess, I was glad someone liked my painting.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Bird of Paradise

Oil on 10" x 7" canvas.

10" x 7" piece of canvas glued on 14" x 10" illustration board.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Hi !

Kumusta? Happy New Year! I meant to say that I appreciated your beautiful watercolor card and personalized writing but forgot to write about. Are you taking watercolor lesseon now? How was your Christmas?
We spent Christmas with Roger and his family at Pacifica, about 20 minutes away from S.F. It was raining all day. Then we spent New Years's Eve at home because the party we planned to go to was cancelled because of the Pacific storm. More rain... on New Year's Eve, Day and the Rose Parade. We were stuck at home and catch up with many DVD's. Did you watch the parade? Everybody were smiling the rain. They all look fake.


Hi Evelyne,

Happy New Year! We are doing fine. Thanks for your pro-looking Christmas Card. I didn't have time to make a better card, a better design...it was a rush job. We had house guests--3 adults and 2 children--the first week of December. So, before they came we started preparing for their stay here (8 days). They were from Australia--Mick's cousin and her daughter and family. It was hectic preparing for them; entertaining them; driving them from one place to the other. But they helped with the clean up and cooking...just like what we do back home. So after they left Mick bugged me about making cards and I relented. My computer printer ran out of color ink and I didn't want to bother going out to buy some, so I did it all by hand.

No, I am not taking watercolor class. I do some watercolor painting here at home, and I have a few of them framed. (I took watercolor class in college.) Why bother going to Mary Lou when she doesn't teach at all. Oh, I joined the street painting in Newhall last October. There were only 3 of us, not including Mary Lou. We had fun though.

We had Christmas dinner at my son's place in NoHo; New Year's day we were at a friend's party. Yeah, it rained at the Rose Parade...lol...but I didn't bother watching it. I was still catching up on my laundry--beddings (I have to buy new ones) and towels used by our house guests.

I have not done much painting since November...I've been planning to do some this month...just plans, but I hope I'd get to do it before the month ends.

How's the painting coming along?



Wednesday, January 11, 2006


I should be updating this more often, but I'm so busy I can't keep up. I haven't done any painting...nothing. Argh...I'm supposed to make a doctor's appointment. Busy, busy, busy. What in Sam Hill? Pictures from our Black Sea cruise I haven't finished printing, and that was in year 2004. Oooohhh, my gosh. Focus. I need to focus. Hocus focus...lol. I haven't filled up that box I'm sending home...there's still plenty of room for other stuff.

Our house guest, Ermie, left more pictures for me to print. I did a couple already. And, oh yes, pictures that came with Christmas cards I have to put them in my album. This would be kind of like a reminder for me to do all these things. Let me see. I'll write them down here...but doctor's appointment will be last. If I can help it, I don't like going to the doctor.

Ed asked me to frame a photo of his former teacher--Bill Ryusaki and Bill's friend, the late Bruce Lee. This has been sitting in my little studio since December. It's about time I start working on these small projects to get them out of my way.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Contrails Galore

These white streaks of contrail crosses the blue sky on this early sunny morning, like white chalk lines on a blue board. It's fascinating to watch the formation as jets fly above.