Saccharine Irony

This site is a compilation of fluid thoughts, a collection of poetry, random glimpses of humor and tragedy, spontaneous notions of an extremely sensitive mind.

The Year That Was December 22, 2010

Years from now, if I had to look back on a particular year in my life I will definitely find 2010 to be one of the most remarkable. Not because I’ve spent this year traveling (which I really intend to do very soon) or that I’ve finally come home to my soul mate (a.k.a fallen in love, for good :p) or that I’ve finally found my one place under the sun.

Let’s just say that for this year alone, I’ve learned everything I should have and could have ever learned in the past 27 years or so. ย Not everything of course; I know the lessons will never stop coming, but for this year, I know that I have gained more than I have lost. And I believe with my whole heart that I will gain back everything that I may have lost in the past.

First, let me tell you about my control issues. I’m a planner, the most fastidious you may have ever seen. I’m fond of lists too, and in my mind I used to have my future all planned out. Grocery lists, things-to-do lists, things-to-shop-for lists, ย marriage plans, vacation lists, list, list, list, list. I plan not merely for the sake of organizing, but more on being able to retain my control. No planner is ever without a list and I’m the planner queen of all planner queens.

I demand control in almost anything and if I don’t get it, well you HAD TO give it to me. Many people who love me know this. And this is why they spend half their time loving me and half their time hating me. Me and my affinity for control and everything that comes with it.

But then I realize that control is selfishness. I was a fool to realize that I control anything or anyone. Yes, I can plan, I can list, I can look forward to a future that isn’t here yet, but I cannot control anything. If it comes, it comes. If not, then why should I lose sleep over it? Why should we sleep over things that are not meant to be? I’ve been juvenile and I’ve been selfish and this year I decided to grow up or at least try to.

I don’t know whether I have gotten rid of all my control issues, but what I’m sure of is that I’ve stopped asking questions. And I’ve stopped demanding the answers right here and right now. I’ve stopped wondering why there are so many questions, or why some things are and some things aren’t.

I’ve finally learned what faith is all about.

I look back on my life and now see all the blessings I’d been given and up until now I get teary-eyed thinking about how ungrateful I had been. No, not teary-eyed, I bawl my eyes out. Seriously. The very reason for my unhappiness had been my ungratefulness. And pride. And for this year, I’ve finally decided to throw them into the shredder and let go.

~~~~~

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Immediately after celebrating the New Year festivities in January of this year, I went on a hiking trip with my brother and his male friend, after having visited about seven or eight churches within the city. My brother then had a special petition for the heavens, but I joined them for a completely different reason. I wanted to pray for a meaningful year, I wanted to offer my thank-yous, and I wanted inner peace. The hiking trip had been the last of our sojourn, and to get to a hilly chapel of the Virgin of Guadalupe, we had to traverse a long stream about eighteen times or nine times back and forth. So it was a short hike for a few minutes and then a battle with the currents for longer minutes. We were wet thigh-high, and we had to carry wooden sticks to keep our balance. The small chapel was located on a hilly area, and at the distance you can make out the mountains and some horses and the thick forest. It was a quiet place for meditation and prayer and I remember lighting a few candles as I whispered my gratitude and contrition, my pain and my hopes.

At that time, I wanted to do something to mark out the new year, I wanted to greet another year by doing something concrete about my spirituality. And now that the year is about to draw to a close, I could not have picked a better way to embrace 2010, and for the coming year, I expect to mark out its beginning by doing the same thing. Visit churches, pray, hike, traverse rivers, light candles, and pray.

Because really, we are not here to control anything, or to ask questions, or to demand the answers. We only do the best that we can, nothing more. We can only offer thanks to a Master and a Creator who has designed this universe, this world so beautifully and skillfully that even the brightest minds find themselves perplexed and asking even more questions.

And yes, we are here to love. To love and love and love. To love everyone without exception, to love without ceasing, to love without pride, and to love without shame.

After all, we get what we give. And if only everyone gave out love, all the world would have love.

๐Ÿ™‚

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

 

27 Things I Did and Learned On my 27th Year October 12, 2010

Filed under: confessions,Events — Aimee @ 5:00 am
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In a few weeks I will be turning 28.

The past year had been stormy, heartbreaking, gratifying, and liberating all at the same time. I had my share of heartbreaks, learned a few things, accomplished some, and made a few worthwhile discoveries along the way.

Before I turn a year older, I would like to share a few things which had made me a year wiser – these are nothing more than the ramblings of a girl who lives inside her head most of the time – and some things which afforded me a few laughs here and there. So here goes.

I spent my 27th year…

1. attending my high school 10th year reunion.

2. learning how to swim.

3. dressing up for three weddings – my brother’s included.

4. learning that decent guys are a rare breed.

5. hoarding books.

6. visiting the melancholic mountains again, after two years.

7. trying to forgive myself. ๐Ÿ™‚

8. hitting the jogging oval during summer afternoons.

9. attempting to get drunk. Beer and margaritas, anyone?

10. allowing myself some spiritual growth.

11. baking! Muffins, cupcakes, sweet rolls, and chocolate desserts.

12. helping organize my best friend’s wedding.

13. meeting up with friends for coffee/hot chocolate/tea and very deep conversations.

14. learning that mothers are not perfect, but you can love them with your whole heart anyway.

15. wishing I could spend a week in Europe.

16. failing to attend at least one of two very important weddings of two of my girlfriends, held on the same date, with the same color motif, but oceans and miles apart. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

17. making new friendships and deepening old ones. Though I have to say that some friendships have gone sour, too.

18. going out on a date, flirting with a player, and discovering that pointless dating, flirting, and playing are just that – pointless. (!)

19. hoarding summery, frilly tops. It’s perpetually summer in the country when there are no rains.

20. obsessing over my skin. When you’re nearing thirty you better have some strict skin care regimen to keep those pores from expanding and those dark eye circles from magically appearing during odd snapshot moments. (Wait, did I just say thirty? How did I get so old all of a sudden? :-()

20. witnessing drunk girls striptease-ing at some lousy bar for some lousy prize money. The things that alcohol makes you do, tsk.

21. going gaga over Glee!

22. trying to keep my weight down. I’d like to think I’m doing good. Bye bye McDonalds!

23. curbing my shopaholic tendencies.

24. wanting to be a pastry chef.

25. allowing myself a good cry when I need to.

26.ย Facebooking and blogging. Haha.

27. discovering, through Paulo Coelho, that true freedom is not a place, a hobby, or a person. “The true experience of freedom is having the most important thing in the world without owning it.”

Happy birthday to me. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

A Cup of Coffee A Day Chases the Blues Away October 11, 2010

Filed under: confessions — Aimee @ 1:27 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

So here is the equation:

 

beware of that fin!

 

Cold weather/rainy days + Wedding proposals by Facebook friends published all over the site + Work that’s getting more boring everyday + Chronic indecision as to which career to settle for + No one to hold hands with = DEPRESSION.

This is pathetic.

So first off, the rainy weather. Last Friday, some parts of the city had been submerged in ankle-deep rainy water and if the thrashing rains had not stopped on time, our neighborhood may have been subjected to another flooding, the third time in less than two years. Depressing and frustrating all in one breath.

So second part of the equation: wedding proposals all over Facebook. So I’ve written about how thrilled I was about my best friend getting the engagement rock on her birthday. But then, everyone else started getting the virus, and now, if people are not getting engaged or getting married (my brother got hitched mid of this year, and a baby boy, my first nephew, is set to come out in January or February), they are having babies. And then it took me a whole minute to realize that I will be turning 28 in less than a month. No boyfriend now, so definitely no engagement on the horizon, and certainly no wedding and babies due anytime soon. Not that I’m actually looking forward to getting married, not at all. I can’t imagine being a wife to anyone right now, and I’ve promised myself to fulfill something first before agreeing to any form of romantic relationship with anyone. It’s just that, well, weddings are so lovely and babies are so cute. Now, I’m even more depressed. :p

Third part of the equation, boring work. I love writing yes, but this homebased stuff is getting stale. I need to get out asap, and I’m setting my deadline on the first month of the following year. Fingers crossed and twisted this time.

Fourth part, never mind. I actually know which career I want to settle in, it’s just that the career I really want is somewhere in the greater metropolis. So, it’s going to be strong heart for me this time and lots of Kleenex for when I leave home again.

Fifth part of the equation: no one to hold hands with. Well, see lengthy explanation on the second part of the equation. That explains everything and then some.

Depression.

But then I had coffee, and now I’m smiling again.

And now that I’m feeling better, I’ve realized that the soft pitter-patter of rain is really nothing to get wired up about. And that choosing to stay single after a very painful break up is one of the bravest and wisest things I’ve done for myself. I don’t feel incomplete in any way, so why rush the next love story? (If truth be told I still want the same love story, but that’s another story on another day. :-))

For the longest time I never gave myself much credit about being strong and independent, but I continue to surprise myself everyday. Thank you Lord, for giving me a small but resilient heart!

(But yeah, it’d be nice to hold hands with someone once in a while… more coffee please!)

:-p

~~~~~

 

 

Coffee Shop Dreams September 15, 2010

Filed under: confessions,Food,Saccharine thoughts — Aimee @ 11:24 am
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One of my favorite places in the whole wide world is a coffee shop. Put me anywhere in this country and I will instantly feel at home in any of these three places: a bookstore, a church, and a coffee shop. The bookstore part is obvious. Books are one of the earliest collections I’ve ever owned. The church part is obvious too. It’s the one place I go to when everything else is crazy and chaotic, and the peace that I get from staring at the altar and humming my prayers is not one which I can easily get anywhere.

But a coffee shop is something else. It’s pretty obvious that I love coffee, but sometimes I take tea and just desserts at coffee shops too. They have become like sanctuaries to me, where I can read my favorite novel, flip on the latest issue of Wedding magazine without thinking, or people watch as if it were the most natural thing in the world. Coffee shops allow me to live inside my head, if only for a time.

So if I had a few millions, I’d probably open my own coffee shop. Since I’m for the homey, cozy feel as opposed to the sleek, dark ambiance some city coffee shops are known for, my future baby will probably look something like this:

Brick walls, wooden floors, wall lighting, comfy divans, lamps. Bookshelves should line some of the walls, very much like my favorite coffee shop in Malaybalay — Bukidnon Brew Cafe. Since I love paintings, I would also love my future coffee shop to have a few creations from my artist friends (if they’d be so kind to donate :p), and hopefully, to have some of my worthless doodles included in too, that is if the interior designer thinks it a smart idea.

And now that I’m crazy about gourmet cooking and adding fresh and dried herbs in and on almost everything, I also want my future cafe to have a balcony window for fresh herbs, so my fellow coffee-bookworms can sip their lattes and smell in the scent of fresh basil, thyme, and rosemary.

Pastries are my second love – well, more on making them than eating them. I have a special love reserved for baked sweets, cupcakes specifically, so if I had my way again I’d open a patisserie or a simple pastry shop (if I never get to learn baking French sweets). But before that, a full course on baking and pastries from some decent culinary school. I finally got my certificate on baking and pastries from the local government last year, but a diploma from some elite school won’t hurt. :p

Coffee should not be a solitary pleasure after all. A platter of pastries and a cup of coffee is one of the best marriages there is.

 

Of Wedding Hopes and Dreams August 20, 2010

Filed under: Events,Love,Saccharine thoughts — Aimee @ 7:44 am
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photo credits to Armand Ansaldo and Marty Bryan of Ansaldo Photography

This is a bird’s eye view on the breathtaking ornate altar of the Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Ormoc City the morning of June 25, 2010 when my brother got hitched to his long-time girlfriend, Carla. The long church aisle was dotted with yellow and red flowers – red roses, yellow mums and daisies, green ferns. There were also lighted candles hanging from gold-painted iron flower stands. The choir was lovely, and even lovelier was the fact that they were able to perform an amazing rendition of Chantal Kreviazuk’s Feels Like Home for the bridal march.

Someday I would love to have my own beautiful wedding, but I want more than just a picture-perfect one. More than anything, I hope to have a happy celebration, where there is laughter from beginning to end, and a few tears that signify happiness, nothing else.

Here are more wedding pictures. Enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

that's me! ๐Ÿ™‚

i love you, guys!

 

Coffee and Muffins and Some Thoughts on Marriage March 15, 2010

Filed under: confessions,Events,Love,Strange Men,Women — Aimee @ 4:52 pm
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~~~~~~

Mocha Espresso. Yum.

What a full day I’ve had. I woke up today and blogged about going down with the flu but now it’s almost 1 a.m. and I’m still wide awake, having just arrived home from Bo’s after a long evening over espresso and muffins. I think the flu has subsided a bit, thank heavens, after taking lots of Vitamin Cs and loads of water.

My aunt who’s now married to an American and already based in the U.S. arrived at the house this afternoon and will be staying for a few weeks or so while visiting friends in the city. I got myself two white leather handbags and some makeup as pasalubongs, which is great because I’ve been planning on buying a really nice white bag for the summer and some eye make up for impromptu parties. And tonight she’s decided to treat us out for coffee and muffins because she cannot stand the 5-hour rotating brownouts for the entire evening. Of course I would not want to be left home while the power was out so I slipped into my jeans and top and kind of looked forward to coffee.

While we were at Bo’s some friends of my aunt came to sit with us at the table, and one of them jokingly asked me and my sister if we were already married. We politely replied that no, we are still in our mid-twenties and not at all planning on getting hitched very soon. But the old man was quite in the mood for kidding around, and opined that now is the best time to get married and that marrying when you’re already thirty and up is a huge, huge mistake.

Really? I’m 27, single, having the time of my life, and not at all wanting to settle anytime soon. Well, okay, stability is a huge factor, and at this point, my savings are not anywhere near impressive, so perhaps that is one huge reason why marriage is the farthest thing from my mind right now.

Perhaps, a year or two from now, if that someone proposes to me, I’d gladly say yes. If. A huge IF. But anytime soon is not at all possible. So whoever says I should get married now will do well to shut up. You don’t get married because it’s the right age, you get married because you have the right person in your life at the RIGHT TIME.

Who cares if you get married at 35? At 40? Hello. At this time and age, not every girl is lucky to have a decent man just when their cheeks are at their rosiest and their ovaries are at the pink of health.

But tonight I did not shut the old man up. He was fortunately too funny for that. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

I Just Need To October 22, 2009

Filed under: confessions,Women — Aimee @ 3:39 pm
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breathe

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Stop for a while and take a few deep breaths. This whirlwind existence is interesting, but pretty exhausting.ย  I miss my lazy weekends, movie and DVD marathons, books and hot chocolate, leisurely me-time, and some belly dancing classes in the evenings. I miss having unplanned dates with someone who loves to hold my hand and smell my hair. I miss taking my dog to the beach. Heck, I even miss doing the laundry during quiet Sunday afternoons.

And even with all these chaos, I still plan to take up some Web Design and Dreamweaver courses and an English writing-related diploma course next semester. What am I thinking? It’s almost November. As if all the holiday rush, year-end parties, and gift hunting deadlines are not crazy enough. As if I am not stressed enough.

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breathing

Well, breathing is enough for now. ๐Ÿ™‚