Category Archives: buhay bahay

need to get solar fast!

it’s been going on for some time now in my hometown: “brownouts” as we call them here in the Philippines. within the past week, there have been 2 almost whole-day incidents of having no electricity. in the day, perhaps, it’s more tolerable — you can go to the mall or go outside in the yard to feel the breeze blow in. electronic gadgets actually get to rest because of no wifi and no watching TV. but at night, when everyone needs to stay indoors and try to sleep, that’s when it gets really annoying.

i’ve actually planned for this and tried to build the solar kit by buying from lazada. it was for the rainy season when i know (so well) that brownouts happen. and during storms. unfortunately, the solar panel didn’t arrive — the supplier could not apparently fulfill my order because of they didn’t have stocks of the panel. i now had a solar charge controller without a solar panel. (ummm… still there? hehe. i know it’s kinda nerdy but it’s just really frustrating). it’s like having a car without wheels and fuel in the tank.

i asked my sister what they did during the night and she said she checked in at a motel with her family. they had a DFA passport renewal appointment so she thought they really needed sleep because they had to be there early. i didn’t get to ask how my parents did but knowing my dad, i’m sure they were fine. but wouldn’t it be a convenience to not be inconvenienced by power outages?

a facebook friend had this post about living off-grid was actually living “off-greed” i.e. not power-hungry and not wasteful of resources. i liked that idea a lot.

so now, i’m trying to scramble to put the solar kit together. now currently debating a cheap but short-term solution that’s immediately available vs. expensive but long-term solution that needs to take a while to save for. 😦



hospital staycation

tuwang-tuwa pa naman ako nung narinig kong may long weekend na naman. it turns out, magiging staycation pala yung long weekend ko… may extension pa! haha!

the little one was sick since the evening of June 20. pero he was already better by thursday. friday morning, makulit na nga eh, so i decided to go to work and not worry much. then when the fever came back on saturday, A decided we should head to the hospital just to make sure everything’s alright.

the doctor took one look at him and said he was dehydrated and asked if we would like to have him admitted inside the hospital. since we thought it would just be an overnight thing and sagot naman ng health insurance, we said yes.

syempre kinailangan ng IV for his fluids. tatatag talaga loob mo kapag magulang ka na. iyong iyak niya at pagmamakaawa sa pagsabi ng “AYAW!” breaks your heart but you know it’s for something better kaya titiisin mo. T_T ayan, naluluha na naman ako…

after the tests came back, the pedia said we’ll have to stay for 3-4 days. di na ‘to overnighter.


i got a bit worried but she said that it was only a precaution and just so that we are sure that the infection was clear. so it was really nothing serious. it’s more of making sure he recovers faster and better (naman! 24/7 aircon tapos may meals pa? LOL!).

by monday, he was absolutely fine, save for the occasional cough. and tuesday, he was jumping up and down the hospital bed! that afternoon, while i was knocked out and the in-laws were watching over him, Dr. Pandy said that all things considered, we’re probably going home the next day.


finally doing her final rounds on wednesday, we were cleared to be discharged from the hospital.

nakakatuwa din makita how he interacts with other people. kahit na natatakot at iiyak siya everytime na may naka-scrubs na papasok or mask, he would always wave and say “bye!” when we asked him to. (although by monday medyo nasanay na siya kaya konting iyak na lang). sanay kasi siya na halos kami-kami lang nakikita niya. he seldom goes out to socialize except on weekends. minsan nga hindi na rin kasi we have to do chores. he seems to be a friendly person. hindi kagaya ko! masyadong introvert. haha

and today, balik-trabaho na ulit, 2nd day. and nagulat na lang din ako… weekend na ulit!

i made a list

sign of aging siguro ito.

i’ve always been amused by my uncle who lives with us in pampanga and his record-keeping and labeling OC-ness. he would write his favorite TV shows schedule on a piece of ruled yellowpad and attached that to a clipboard and hung it near the TV set. all the small items he’d find during an engine build, he’d either stick to a flattened old cardboard box or in small baby food containers neatly labeled. it was approaching Batman’s OC-ness level!

now that i’m growing older myself, i find it more and more difficult to track things with just my mind. well, i could still track them but there’s an anxiety that builds which makes me worry that i forget something. or i might miss on an opportunity where i had a thought or idea about a thing that i wanted to share.


or simply because i want so many things in my life, i might prioritize one thing over another because i just saw the other thing first thinking, “oooh, i want that,” without realizing there’s something more important that i could just buy at the same price.

so now, i made a list of the things i want. i actually have an online spreadsheet of my previous list but i keep forgetting to look at it so i decided i’d write them down so i could see them easily and maybe reorganize, reprioritize them. i think this will be in keeping with my ‘planning’ phase for the new year.

and what a relief. my mind seems to have been freed from cloudiness. i thought, “this must’ve been how the Pensieve would work in Harry Potter!” LOL!

it’s therapeutic, i think, that besides writing down thoughts in a blog, or speaking in a vlog, writing things down physically is really something else.

do you feel the same way? lemme know in the comments!

lifehack: set quarterly goals instead of new year’s resolution

i think i read this somewhere sa facebook. na imbes na #balikalindog2017 ang gawin, dapat #3PoundsIn3Months na lang. it makes the target more concrete and more doable.

kaya ngayon, feeling ko kailangan ko ng konting ‘retreat’ para makapag-reflect at isip kung ano ba ang mga targets ko this year.

as i type this, meron akong naalalang video ni Bud Brown, taking on a 30-day challenge to learn a new language. (i think he knows 10 languages!) he’s trying to learn Mandarin. ako naman, i want to learn Morse Code. i learned a few letters from Ham Whisperer but hardly made progress when it came to Lesson 3. 😦 and i’m sad and put it off for some time. maybe if i focus on it, i’d be better.

anyway, that’s one. perhaps. but i’m not sure. di lang naman kasi personal goal lang naisip kong target-in. pati na din siguro sa trabaho… i’m getting the “why am i still doing this?” vibe again and i don’t like that. kaya kailangang mag-isip ng pakulo. 😀

weight goals? hmmm… parang ayoko na. though i’m getting tired more easily day by day. kailangan na talaga maging mas active. hmmm… what activity could i do? and when should i do it? suggestions? Magpatuloy magbasa lifehack: set quarterly goals instead of new year’s resolution

i like to tinker

it’s another recent obsession. but actually, i’ve been a tinkerer since i was small. again, this was mainly because my dad was one too. so was my grandfather. i believe it came normally because we had the tools to take things apart at home — basically a small screwdriver set, a multimeter, and a soldering gun. and i’d watch my dad repair (or attempt to) electric fans, hair dryers, study lamps… but nothing more complicated like a TV set or a DVD player, unless it’s pretty obvious that the source of the problem is a basic loose or cut wire.

i’ve inherited the basic skills (except for aircon repair. he does that pretty well and i couldn’t) but haven’t put them to use that often. except for repairing electric fans. 🙂

now, i’m getting into electronics and been wondering how i could repurpose or recycle stuff at home. a rechargeable lamp stopped working. i know it’s due to the old battery but i can’t get it out. it’s stuck with glue. so i’ve been thinking of salvaging the radio and speaker on it. and maybe turn them into something like this:

nice right?

but aside from not having the tools, i don’t think my skill set is that advanced yet. maybe i should get into an electronics class somewhere. or even just apprentice as a speaker builder. 🙂

pagod lang

sabi nga sa kanta ng eraserheads:

1457978273330and you just keep trying, and trying. even if naiiyak na ako ngayon. iniisip ko na pagod lang ako (kahit na long weekend! haha!)

naiiyak dahil you get that feeling of never doing anything right. naiiyak dahil you have that feeling of making a wrong decision. naiiyak because of frustration dahil akala mo that that was the right decision.

to remove the vagueness of the post, ganito kasi yun: (1) A has allergies. and a lot of things trigger these allergies. (2) we’re living in 2 houses because of our situation with our toddler — our current house and the in-laws’. the temporary schedule is: weekdays at in-laws, weekends at home.

aside from the toddler, A isn’t keen on staying because the house isn’t in tiptop condition. bawal siya ma-stress kaso nase-stress siya sa bahay.

anyway, for a time, she couldn’t sleep because of the heat of summer. i was hoping to get the A/C repaired but in the end, we bought a new one instead. got sick a couple of times the past few months so everything seemed to just go downhill from there since i couldn’t maintain a cleaning and fixing-up schedule. piles of clothes, both dirty and clean, were just lying around. and not soon after, monsoon season started and we’ve been having leaks all over the house. and with not-so-good ventilation, you get molds soon enough specially when the sun don’t shine for a while. of course, you can imagine the amount of stress A encounters everyday coming home to such a messy house.

she can’t do anything about it since she’ll fluff up the dust and cause her more allergies.

mean time, i was swamped because of the backlog of things to do since i got sick. i never got to fixing it and maintaining any of it. i’d keep it one day and then just forget it the next.

so now, a sort of ‘compromise’ is set — we spend weekdays at our in-laws, so she can still relax a bit and not just be a solo-parent at home with our son, while getting things done in the house. on weekends, we get to sleep in our own house to give lolo and lola a break. this is actually just step 1. the real plan is to move in completely after renovations are made. we’ll live in the 2nd floor and lolo and lola will be on the ground floor with tito. the other house? it’s going to be a garage for the mean time.

today, A asked me to buy medicine. because her allergies are worse and are probably infected. (not to be too graphic: when you’re infected, your white blood cells get active and… you know what happens to infected wounds right?) so yeah. she attributes it to the beddings and pillows. and here i thought all along that sleeping comfortably in our airconditioned room was better for her to sleep in since our in-laws’ room was hot and humid even at night. what makes me feel worse is that she told me she was healing quite well when we spent our nights at our in-laws. every turn, every decision, a mistake.

the worst part perhaps is that feeling of uselessness. inutile. that she’s better off somewhere else. and that hurts.

either “meron” ako today or pagod lang ako.

siguro nga, pagod lang.

my grandfather’s hands


here’s a picture of a picture of my grandfather who i never got to see alive. but a lot of things around our old house in Pampanga tell me a lot about him, from what my father would often narrate to me.

the sewing machine he used when they were making curtains and RTW that they’d bring to Tutuban in Manila via train. The monocle he used for repairing watches. the plow when they used to farm the land. the bow and clay bar he used when polishing and cleaning jewelry. the chisels he used when making ladders from the bamboo in our backyard. the violin he played during processions.

his hands were busy, skilled hands. they were the hands of a hard-working man.

thinking about this makes me feel like i really have big shoes to fill. or at least, i have this proud heritage that i want to preserve and keep.

my father could do much of what my grandfather did. and my father added one more — he repaired electrical appliances. of course, you needed to know a bit more about electronics, soldering, etc. and these he passed on to me as well. i never got to learn how to repair watches though. hehe… but i inherited lolo’s violin playing, something my father did not. so i guess we’re even. 🙂