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Archive for the ‘entertainment’ Category


In my last post here two days ago, I told you that I am now focused on Christmas stories, those inspiring ones that bring about the beauty of celebrating Christmas. I’m  done with a story about  Alaska, spending Christmas in the wilderness and witnessing the northern lights.  I’ve always love novels that have Alaska as their setting.

This afternoon, I was looking for some movies to watch when I saw this free movies app on my phone. I watched two actually, The Unborn and  Love Alaska. What a lovely coincidence finding a still new TV movie (2019) featuring such a lovely place.  I am overjoyed.

What’s happening to the Philippines? Today is the last day of the approved franchise of the largest broadcasting network, ABS CBN  but  the National Telecom didn’t approve their renewal. What would happen to the more than 11,000 employees of the network? It has become a victim of this government’s whims.  They’d rather have the millions of viewers feel ignorant on what is happening around.  To think this is the time that we badly need those up-to-date reports brought by the network. This government is abnormal and it is obvious that the reason is political.

Hay naku! When will they stop harassing people? This is what I read from an irate netizen:  POGOS are allowed to operate even with unpaid 50 billion taxes. They stopped ABS CBN from operating with fully paid taxes. This is clearly anti-Filipino, anti-democracy,anti-freedom of speech.

If you must know those POGOs are illegal gambling operations run by the Chinese nationals and are protected by the government. The latter serves china more than it does the Filipino people.

POGOS allowed to operate with 50 billion taxes unpaid. ABS-CBN stopped from operating, with all taxes paid. This is anti-Filipino, anti-democracy, anti-freedom of speech.ech.id. ABS-CBN stopped from operating, with all taxes paid. This is anti-Filipino, anti-democracy, anti-freedom of speech.

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Goosebumps.

I am having the time of my life what music and songs to upload on my tab from various YouTube selections. Josef taught me how to download them earlier so I won’t have to go online to listen. Google Play is definitely it. Downloaded them as MP3.  I call it my music library.

Now I am listening to some classical music selections of various composers while I am updating our Catholic page on Facebook.  Talk of Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Debussy, Vivaldi, Chopin and many others. I recently read a somewhat historical novel in the box set that I found featuring some music of the great masters. I wrote down some titles which I am trying to find on YouTube. So far, so good, they are all there. What a lovely change from  the noise I often hear being sung today. Perhaps not all of you would agree with me that today’s brand of songs and music are too noisy.

Music soothes the  heart and the soul. Am I right? They bring that inner joy much like finding a good book that you can relate to. Spring Waltz 2 by Chopin is the best and the Four Seasons by Vivaldi, Claude Debussy’s Clair de Lune.  Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody always reminds me of the the movie Somewhere in Time which I watched three times I think. Love them all. I remember Nate’s CDs when he was small and Nissa bought them for him to admire. They have some of the best tunes and piano selections that could put a child to sleep.  Soft and gentle tunes so pleasant to listen to.

What kind of music do you go for? I still listen to the 60s and 70s  songs most of the time.

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I am finally done trimming the carabao grass early this morning. Hooray.

A few days ago, Jovy taught me how to download the I Want  app on my tab, tried it today  and I super enjoyed watching two movies, listening to Pilipino Christmas carols on YouTube and I also watched the final games of the UAAP Season 82  which ended a few minutes ago. I only watch basketball during the UAAP (University Athletic Association of the Philippines) season. Ateneo won for the third straight year with UST coming in second in the basketball championship. It was a lovely game with both sides of players giving their best shots. I think I told you in my other posts that I seldom watch television much less a movie. Occasionally though, I catch some movie adaptations on YouTube. The I Want app is owned by one of the largest networks in the country, ABS CBN. It has news, entertainment, music, variety shows, drama series, sports and movies especially produced by ABS CBN. I had a grand time selecting two movies to watch, one is even dubbed in English which I think was for international release. I finally found it a joy to watch something while in bed 🙂 For a while checking my blog and reading other blog posts and reading  books were relegated to the back seat 🙂 Our local talents/artists are truly gifted.

Maybe I would watch one more tonight before going to sleep.Haha, it’s a marathon.

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A friend who is a producer  at  GMA Channel 7  is  coming over tomorrow.  They are doing a Christmas series and she will be interviewing me about being a cancer survivor and all. It will be an on-cam taped interview.  It’s my first foray into the limelight…haha!  I asked her what I need to do and she said  I don’t need to do anything except answer her questions.   I hope it goes well. Feeling excited. It is indeed a blessing to be in remission  this long. God is so good.

Finally I was able to submit my SSS requirements, done in thirty minutes but I have to wait for more than an hour earlier than the scheduled opening of their branch. It’s quite good to be  early.

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13158800Beautiful. Magnificent story. One of the best reads for my 2016 challenge. It was Goodread’s Choice 2012 winner and I didn’t know it was recently adapted into film until I finished reading it a few minutes ago. Read some reviews, some are the same as I felt in the middle of reading the book….I cried at the last few pages. I watched the 3-minute trailer on YouTube..wow! The ocean lighted by that lone lighthouse was lovely. I have always admired seeing lighthouses from a distance but I have never seen one lighted at night.

This is my 96th book for this year, four more to go and I am done. I am thinking of rereading The Godfather by Mario Puzo, getting a start at Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak (there is a full movie adaptation on YouTube) and maybe another inspiring book by Alicia Ruggerie, if I could find one.

“There are still more days to travel in this life. And he knows that the man who makes the journey has been shaped by every day and every person along the way. Scars are just another kind of memory….Soon enough the days will close over their lives, the grass will grow over their graves, until their story is just an unvisited headstone.”

“Sometimes life turns out hard. Sometimes it just bites right through you. And sometimes, just when you think it’s done its worst, it comes back and takes another chunk.”

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Original Pilipino Music.

There is this new show on ABS CBN channel called I Love OPM which started over the weekend.  It only airs during Saturdays and Sundays. As the airtime was a bit late, I  was not able to watch the initial showing but Josef did and he said it was  lovely, the concept is new and interesting. I don’t really watch television every day but sometimes there are programs worth waiting for.  They feature Pilipino music composed by talented Filipino musicians/artists and what  makes it all the more interesting is that all participants of the show are foreigners. They sure know how to speak Tagalog.

Last night, we watched the Sunday edition – it’s entertainment at its best.  There were three  featured individual contestants and a group from Korea – one is an Arab guy who is fluent in Tagalog, another one is a shy Indian who has a big crush on Anne Curtis. The third one is a Russian lady who is married to a Filipino guy and said that she loves the Philippines. The  group from Korea  sang and danced.  The Russian lady did a rap. They really went out of their way to learn the Pilipino language and speak it like a native.  It’s kind of amazing when you see a foreign face singing a Tagalog song.

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” – Aldous Huxley

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Yes, I know a lot of you would probably react and say “it’s too early yet”. I know, I know. Yesterday before my son left for work he asked me to listen to the new downloads on his tab saying that I would surely like it and adding that it’s my favorite album of all time. I was surprised. He downloaded the whole album of Gunter Kallmann’s  Christmas Sing In. Around this time every year, I would bring out the various CDs and play them randomly and one of them is the album Christmas Sing In. As if that was not enough, son said, “listen to this Ma”. We smiled, remembering those days when they were younger and we would listen to the Jackson Five belting out ♫♪Santa Claus Is Coming To Town♪♫.

Did you ever believe in Santa Claus? Did you let your kids believe that he comes on Christmas Eve bearing gifts that they asked and prayed for? I don’t remember my kids ever having asked Santa about what gifts to receive for Christmas although they each had a picture with Santa Claus, a perfect capture of smiling kids on Santa’s knee.  Those were the days when parents and their kids line up at one section of the mall  to wait for their turn to be pictured with Santa. I wonder if they still do that these days. Since I resigned from work more than fifteen years ago, my check list on buying Christmas gifts has dramatically narrowed down to just family and close friends. I do my Christmas shopping early depending of course on available budget and finding gifts for family and friends that they will truly appreciate. It’s not the cost that counts really, but the thoughtful gestures behind the gifts.

I remember our Christmas celebration last year with Nate’s infectious smiles while  embracing a Mickey Mouse toy which was larger than he was.  Back then, Mickey Mouse was his favorite. Now he is into Minions and large Lego blocks. I wonder what will be next when he celebrates his third birthday come November.

I bought a food magazine on home-cooked Pinoy classics. Chanced upon it when I went grocery-shopping. I would love to try those luscious local fruit pies (at least one on their list), recipes using coconut, and locally famous desserts. One can always buy them here (Cainta is famous for kakanin) but the challenge of course lies in learning how to cook them in one’s own kitchen. I would love to try the good old-fashioned Bibingka wrapped in banana leaves, topped with grated coconut, a little amount of sugar and butter and those cheesy Ube-Cassava cakes…heaven.

Oh, I am listening to the remastered Christmas album of Johnny Mathis. I think of Dad when I listen to this, he used to have an LP (a long-playing record) way back then.  It makes me smile and a little thoughtful listening to the catchy and lovely Christmas songs in the album.

I know, it’s that time of year again!

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It’s one of those  relaxed and lazy days of the week.  I asked Josef if he could accompany me to the newly opened library in our town and he readily agreed. I told him bringing the car was probably a mistake because of the horrendous traffic. Such common daily routine of  everyone ….traffic. He had all his IDs laminated while I waited at the library to talk to their assistants there. There is no licensed librarian yet and most of the volumes on the shelves were donations from the National Library.They have a sizable collection of National Geographic and several children’s story books, various local publications of food mag, travel and leisure. I had a good time chatting with the library assistants and I promised that I would donate some fiction/non-fiction books to add to their shelves. Finally, we have a modern and lovely town library with lots of computers and free wi-fi.Most shelves are still vacant though.

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Nissa gifted me with a lovely Zen Mandalas coloring book complete with a  set of Faber-Castell  colored pencils, sharpener and eraser. The designs look so complicated and challenging.  I was happy before having an ordinary coloring book, this one needs a lot of time before you finish a page. Coloring is a stress-buster. Josef  told me early this morning that I could upload Mandala on my tab. Practice, practice, practice. It is so addicting.  The final picture depends on how creative you are in choosing a combination of colors. Here are some photos that I practiced on before we went to the library.

image1image2image3image4image5image6   I  set aside reading again. I can’t wait to start coloring on an actual page.

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When music inspires, the soul rejoices and the heart is happy.

Yesterday was one of those days that kept me a little morose. Being alone has its rewards, the interminable silence that keeps your mind wander  but there are times when you feel that you need to do something aside from talking to yourself and your three dogs.  My son called up yesterday and told me that he was really happy to stay in Boracay for a week.  “I know” I said, it is a much-needed break. They will be coming home tomorrow and I am excited to see him again.

Out of boredom (yes, I was really bored) I played Christmas carols on YouTube. Seeing the digitally remastered  Christmas album of Johnny Mathis made me smile. It made me remember my Dad when he was alive. He used to have this LP and it was a family favorite  and we would all look forward to listening to the album in our portable player every time Christmas season comes. It brought back lovely memories  of the past, nostalgic and magical.  I visited Hallmark channel too and checked all the uploaded full movies that you can just click and play. I found A Song From The Heart  which was worth the almost two hours  I was glued to the monitor. It starred Amy Grant, Keith Carradine and D. W. Moffett. Amy Grant is cast as Maryann Lowery, a blind music teacher. New Age pianist Gregory Pavan (D.W. Moffett) became romantically involved with the talented  Maryann and coaxed her to have an eye operation because he knew she had what it takes to be world-renowned concert cellist. Oliver Comstock  (Keith Carradine), is cast as a close neighbor who has always worshipped Maryann  from afar. I had a great time watching and listening to the music. And as if that wasn’t enough, I watched another movie (for the nth time,  I guess).  I read the book  The Promise when I was in college and watched the movie adaptation with my youngest brother during the mid-eighties. That  was back when Danielle Steel was such a very popular romantic novelist and some of her books were made into movies. I was curious if the movie which I loved thirty years back would still hold the same  fascination for me. It did. I  think the latter was the movie where I memorized the name of the characters, aside from another favorite movie Dying Young.  I accidentally found  the book version many years after watching the movie several times too. The movie adaptation was I think better than the book and I loved the music of Kenny G.

The power of music – it makes you smile, it makes you sing too but sometimes it makes you cry. “Music is the wine that fills the cup of silence” so says Robert Fripp. Do you agree? I do.

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I can’t believe April is almost gone.  The lazy bug caught me again and blogging has taken a backseat for a while. Gone are the times when the day is not complete without writing a few words and posting them here.  I feel comfortable now blogging once or twice a week but I still read posts/updates from friends every day.

You won’t believe this, I’ve become so obsessed with books lately that sometimes I laugh at myself how  I’m gonna read these books  that I have collected all these years and some  e-books that I have on my phone. Hugging a book close and the comfort of turning the pages, loving the scent and smell of the printed pages. Yesterday, I took note of the recommendations of Goodreads based on similar subjects that I have read before. Historical fiction, memoirs and contemporary books still top the list. There was even a time that I visited the list of the 1000 books you have to read before you die but I narrowed it down to the top 500 but not necessarily followed it to the letter. If that is not a book obsession, I don’t know what is.  They call it bibliomania 🙂 I haven’t gone that far yet…no….not yet.  I have a long list which I wrote in my notebook about new authors and new books that I want to read. I am trying to discover Asian authors and so far Khaled Husseini is the best although I found more names who are quite new in the field of writing.

I remember reading On Writing by Stephen King a few years ago, a book borrowed by Nissa from their Stress Management Office then found a brand new hardbound copy later  (still with the dust jacket on) in one of my trips to Booksale. Imagine the joy of finally owning a copy.  He said and I quote “Books are a uniquely portable magic.” “Reading in bed can be heaven, assuming you can get just the right amount of light on the page and aren’t prone to spilling your coffee or cognac on the sheets. ” That’s another line from Stephen King’s book and I laughed out loud when I read it before because it happened to me not just once but several times. At least it was just a glass of water and not a hot cup of coffee 🙂

When I encounter people who say that they are not fond of reading, I try to compose my facial expression not to frown and say “you are missing  a lot”.

P.S. Goodreads says I have read 28 books (56%) out of the 50 books that I challenged myself to finish this year. Maybe, I could add 10 more, what do you think?

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