Monday, February 22, 2010

this song is SOOO cute

This Mighty Heart Attack
Us-2 Evil-0

The video is cute too. It's really, really simple but it's just so ... like cotton candy. ^_^

The Lyrics:

When I saw your eyes
My heart capsized
You were a vision

Then I came to know
You also starred in television

How the hell am I supposed
To ignore the facts and act so fast?
How the hell am I supposed
To contain this mighty heart attack?

Because I realized
We can’t disguise
You’re more than human
Now it won’t suffice
Can’t compromise to
A lesser woman
Can’t apologize
Or tell you twice
Cos I’m not handsome
I can just surmise
That you’re content with
Your brand new boyfriend

How the hell am I supposed
To ignore the facts and act so fast?
How the hell am I supposed
To contain this mighty heart attack?

You know by now
It’s over, don’t you?
You know by now
It’s over, don’t you?

Now’s the painful part
But it’s a start
And yes I did try
I liked you a lot
But all for nought
I guess it’s goodbye

How the hell am I supposed
To ignore the facts and act so fast?
How the hell am I supposed
To contain this mighty heart attack?

Friday, February 19, 2010

scenic and stellar

This is the time of the year when a lot of the brightest stars make an appearance in the evenings. The dark skies seem fuller and relatively brighter, and more-or-less romantic.

Of course we hardly ever get clear views from the city, still the magnitude 2, 1 and 0 lights are very visible. Luckily there's this whole stretch enclosed by second-magnitude and brighter stars, Sirius, Betelgeuse, Rigel, Procyon, Capella, Pollux, Castor and Aldebaran.

This week I've tried to do some amateur astrophotography again. Given that I use a camera that isn't my own and thus one I don't know how to manipulate, and that I have nothing near a decent tripod, my shots were not quite how I hoped they would turn out.

Nonetheless it's been fun to spot stars. I pulled out my decade-old photocopy of a star-chart and did the roll call.

Those present:

Canis Major
Canis Minor
Pollux and Castor of Gemini
A portion of Argo
Star clusters Pleiades and Hyades and a few stars in Taurus

Big Dipper and a few lesser-magnitude stars in Ursa Major
Bootes (with alpha star Arcturus)
The head of Scorpius just peering over the horizon, and its heart, Antares

I also spotted two planets:

Mars, with its bright, distinct yellow glow, somewhere in the area of Gemini. It kinda forms a straight line with Procyon and Sirius.

There's another planet which I suppose is Mercury, somewhere between Leo and Corvus. I noticed that there was a bright "star" there that didn't belong, and realized that it didn't pulse like normal stars do. It was definitely a planet.

I'm hoping I could get the Hubby to agree to a trip to a beach or a mountain, where the stars would be more visible ^_^ I'll have a field day. I'll be sure to bring my camera and my worn-out chart.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

glad not to spend much on clothes

Considering that I don't have what anyone would consider anything near a stable income, I've learned to find fashionable, wearable joys at sales, tiangges and second-hand shops. I don't mind buying - or receiving - second-hand stuff, as long as they're still in good quality. I hear ukay-ukays and thrift stores have become increasingly popular since people have become more financially hard-up; even the so-called "rich folk" have become patrons. These days it's not so looked-down-upon to be a "cheap shopper" since a some celebrities and fashion icons admit to buying their garb from tiangges and ukays.

At the start of the year, I treated myself with two sale dresses. They're actually brand new but very, very slightly damaged - nothing a needle and a bit of thread can't fix - but they're really, really gorgeous, my type of wearables. They make me happy even a month after they were bought.

A few weeks ago, My sister came home from a short visit to our Mama in LA, bearing gifts of bite-sized chocolates and thrift-store clothes. She got me a couple of beach-y blouses perfect for the coming heat wave. She also had two mid-length skirts that she thought I wouldn't wear, but I took them because I saw their potential to be turned into blouses or short dresses. I like i like i like i like.

Just this week, my mother-in-law did some clearing out in her house and asked the Hubby and me to come over and see if there was anything we wanted to take home. We checked out the stash of clothes and surprisingly, we found stuff we could see ourselves wearing, i.e., not too "oldies", not frumpy at all. I got me a couple of shirts, blouses and tank-tops, all still in excellent condition. I even found me a vintage-style formal-ish dress.

And while we were there at her house, we picked up a package from the Hubby's aunt in the 'States. In it were some clothes she bought for us - clearly new; the tags were still on. Mom joked that they were prolly bought on sale, but we didn't mind at all. I was especially glad because I was just thinking of shopping for shirts and thin blouses for the summer, and now I don't have to.

Even if they're not all new, they're new additions to my wardrobe. I'm not too ashamed to be so cheap since I know how to put a fresh, stylish spin to to ukay fashion. I'm glad that I haven't had to spend much on clothes this year yet. And I'm happy to acquire "new" wearables even though I haven't had much of a budget for it.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

happy accidental baked chicken

I was very hungry and wanted to eat something good and satisfying without having to go out and spend. I checked our understocked kitchen to see if anything was available for me to be able to concoct a good meal.

... a few slabs of chicken breast ... no vegetables whatsoever except potatoes ... a jug of soy sauce, a few ounces of vinegar, a bit of olive oil ... leftover homemade pineapple syrup ... a whole lot of spices and dried herbs ...

So once again i challenged my creativity; the goal was to make a yummy, semi-impressive dinner for the Hubby and myself and whoever else wanted to eat with us. I'm glad to say that the objective was accomplished. My only regret is that I didn't take note of how I made it, so I may not be able to make it again.

In an attempt to maybe sort of preserve the recipe because I might want to cook it again, I'm retracing my steps.

So I combined soy sauce, a drizzling of vinegar (I wanted to use calamansi juice but I was too lazy to cut and squeeze and strain), crushed garlic, a bit of curry powder, a bit of ginger, pepper and a few tbsps of cinnamon in a pan for marinade. I did not bother to measure nor take note. I was thinking of throwing some pineapple juice in but later decided I wanted to drink it instead (Oh well, maybe next time). I planned to put in some fresh rosemary from the garden but forgot to. I let the chicken breast soak for twenty to thirty.

I preheated the oven for - I don't know, I really wasn't paying attention. While that was happening, I massaged the chicken breast in the marinade because It seemed fun.

I found me a right-sized baking pan. I poured some of the marinade into the pan, just enough to cover the bottom. I sat the chicken breasts on it, and rubbed them with black pepper and dried basil. They looked yummy already. I put some potatoes and an apple onto the pan to bake with the chicken.

I put the pan in the oven, put the heat on max and waited. I passed the time drawing in my sketchbook. I enjoyed my baking so much that I forgot that something was baking in the oven. Good thing the Hubby decided to check. It must have been ready in fifteen to twenty.

I poked the potatoes to see if they were cooked. They were still a bit hard so I decided the whole pan should go back in for a few more minutes.

In the meantime, I decided to make some topping-sauce. I minced two small red bell peppers freshly picked from our garden. I let them boil in around a fourth of a cup of water. I added some of the marinade and the leftover pineapple syrup, brought it to a boil.

While the rice was cooking, I put in a handful of dried lemon basil into the water. This gave the rice a fresh, herby flavor. After i scooped it out of the rice cooker, i drizzled a small amount of olive oil.

I served the chicken breasts side-by-side on a rectangular plate, their surfaces spattered with the pepper-and-pineapple sauce . I put the baked potatoes and apple (now sliced) on the side. I did not think of taking a picture because i didn't think it would turn out that good.

The nameless, amazingly good, happy accidental baked chicken was a delightful surprise - kept the Hubby and me remarking how good it was. I'm hoping I can duplicate the flavor some other time, or perhaps make a better version of it. Maybe next time I'll put that pineapple juice into the marinade.