Monday, April 23, 2012


...but I'm sorry to tell you that I messed up this blog. The links to most of the posts are broken when I switched back to my blogspot address. As much as I want to fix them, I can't anymore. I tried to republish my posts to no avail. Sigh.

I really love this blog but I have to set it aside for the meantime. I would still update this once in a while, I promise. And out of disappointment, I started another blog. Please drop by there when you have the time. I would appreciate it so much. And please let me know when you do by dropping a line or two. I would certainly return the favor.

Thanks so much!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

My First Intense Sandstorm Experience

One of my main concerns when we went here in Saudi Arabia is the asthma attacks my son Gabby might have when there are sandstorms. So far, in our less than a year here, he only had one attack. And thank God, it was just a mild one.

I always pray that sandstorms in Riyadh will be less in number and intensity. Comparing the sandstorms with that of the typhoons in the Philippines, I can say I've only experienced Signal #1. Until last February 25.

I just got home from work at 1pm when I noticed that the sky was a bit darker than usual. After an hour or so, the wind started blowing hard. I started worrying about my children who were still in school. I knew it was Sandstorm Signal #3 (on my gauge meter) when I went up the rooftop of our house and didn't see the skyscrapers clearly. That included Kingdom Tower and Faisaliah Tower.

When I opened the gate for Gabby and Sunday at 4pm, I barely saw them! The surroundings turned dark and blurry in no time. Below are the videos that tell the tale more clearly:

I checked  for videos on that sandstorm in YouTube and found these two videos.
This is almost what happened when I opened the gate for my kids.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Romance, Movies and a Strawberry Cake

The Love Month ushered in with me watching romantic movies. I don't know what gets into me but I seem to be always watching movies when February comes. I realized I still have great faith in love, even after more than ten years of marriage. It surely helps that God is at the center of my partnership with my husband.

I get good insights while watching movies about love. Among these three, my favorite is P.S. I Love You. This movie made me cry a bucket and appreciate my husband's love for me.

On times I am exhausted from daily work, watching this stuff kinda relaxes me.

I must have been overdosed with love notions that the actual Hearts' Day almost passed by without me remembering it. Maybe because nothing unusual or special happened yesterday. Fred didn't give me anything or didn't ask me out.  He reasoned that our anniversary falls three days after so we might as well celebrate on that day. You may not believe me but that has always been fine with me. We are used to doing that since we got married.

Gabby, on the other hand, showed his love for me demonstratively. I wasn't expecting anything because I thought schools here in Riyadh don't celebrate Hearts' Day. But Gabby and Sunday told me that they had a Valentine Classroom Party and Valentine stuff were sold on booths in the school's quadrangle. Gabby bought me a bear. How I loved him for remembering!

Gabby gave me this little pink bear. He never fails to give me gifts on occasions. Such a thoughtful child.

In my workplace, I thought Arabs don't celebrate Valentine's Day. But they do, especially those who are exposed to Western culture and those who studied abroad. They greeted each other and our Syrian marketing officer received pastries and a cake from her fiancé.

Strawberry cake given with love and shared with almost all the staff.
The only regret that I have is not being able to watch movies in theaters. There are no movie houses or theaters in Saudi Arabia. I miss watching a good movie and dining out with my hubby on Hearts' Day. Maybe, we'll do that when we come home to the Philippines. :)
Have a love-filled life!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Gowns and Winter on the Desert

I wasn't prepared for the winter here in Riyadh. I thought Fred was just exaggerating when he told me before that he used two Korean blankets on winter nights. Now, I realized how true it is and how lonely it was not to have someone to hug on a cold weather like this.

The other night, the temperature fell to -1°C. I usually go home from work at 10 pm and that night, I had to walk briskly from the building to Fred's car because it was shiveringly cold. Brrrrr...I have to endure this cold weather until maybe first week of March.

I think I badly need knitted gloves. I browsed through the fashion magazines for winter fashion collections to check how Arab women here in Saudi dress during this time. Of course, they have their abayas over their clothes but I think that underneath those abayas are fashionable and signature dresses. Having met some Arab women here, I can say that the portrayal of them wearing Dior collections in the Sex and the City 2 movie has some truth in it. I was surprised to see these pages from Layalina Magazine issued on April last year. (April is neither hot or cold here, they say.) The models are donning fashion designers' bridal collection. There is something common with these pics. All models/celebrities seemed to be wearing inner clothes under their gowns and dresses. But they do not. The magazine's layout artist purposely put those inner wear because conservative dress codes of some Arab countries require that women don't expose too much skin, even if it's on print. 

These are bridal collection from known fashion designers.

Gowns as overalls. Despite the inner wear effect,
these Hollywood celebrities still look stunning wearing these.

Just like the models and celebrities above, layering clothes is a must for me now. It is kinda inconvenient but I need to do it to make myself warm. A combination of blouse and pants, an abaya and a coat or jacket is my dress code these days. Better warm than sorry (for the cold), right?

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Ikea on New Year's Eve

We almost spent the New Year in Ikea! We went there past 8pm of December 31 and since it was our first time, we got lost on our way. It turned out to be a New Year's Eve adventure because the road we traversed is dark and ours was the only car passing that way. When we looked behind us, it was total darkness! That dark road led us to the highway going to Ikea and we promised ourselves to ask for directions before going to a place next time.

We went there to buy for our exchange gift activity with our friends here. We also bought some things for the house. I really like it there. There were so many designs for housewares, utensils or pieces of furniture. It was alright to take pictures but I wasn't able to take many out of courtesy to the shoppers.

Green bowls and plastic whatchamacallits ( are these plastic spatulas?) :P

multicolored shower curtains!

cute kitchen stuff!

A simulation of a kid's bedroom. I noticed I like green things for the house!

Fred and the kids outside Ikea
After shopping for gifts, we went to buy ice cream in a cone worth SR1 (Php12)! The food and drinks on the snack area are unbelievably cheap! The drinks are also refillable. What a treat for their shoppers.

For more pics and home design inspirations, visit their website or view their catalogue here. Warning though, you might get addicted to browsing. :P