A Truly Happy Christmas To You

May the truest meaning of Christmas dwell oh so sweetly in your hearts always!

Praise the Lord forever and ever!


Weight Gain Dressing and Anniversary

I dress a little bit this way lately. A tad more feminine but all loose this way. Not because I'm hip or anything but because I've gained weight from the pregnancy and nothing fits. Haha.

I think it's a good silhouette. And the nice thing about gaining weight is gaining some boobs too. Hahaha. Plus I guess the pregnancy hormones made my set a bit fuller. Yahoo. But only till the hormones subside.

I have a friend who I think just had a boob job and wow, she's got some knockers now. I don't think I'd ever go for that though. I find bigger boobs a bit heavy. It feels funny when they're bouncy. Hahaha. Sorry! Also I'm digressing.

It's our 10th wedding anniversary today and I woke up to a really touching long letter from C. Can't believe it's been 10 years.

It's been a really happy, laughter-filled 10 years! Happy anniversary, C! Here's to more adventures and funny moments. It's so good to be married to you. Yech, mush. Haha.


Crazy Mix

I love dressing up. It's one of the expense-free activities I cherish. Even when I just have to run errands, I try to have a little adventure in what I wear.

Here's a crazy mix I had on recently. A lilac metallic taffeta skirt (black reverse side used as a band on the hem), textured purple tights and leopard print ballet flats. Only a basic black tee for my top. Anything more than that would've driven C up the wall. Hahaha. With this outfit, I looked like Alice In Wonderland in a safari mood. Hahahahaha.

Note pair of black flats beside my feet. I always bring a "safety net", like shoes or jeans, in case I chicken out and decide to transform the outfit into something safe. Usually I don't touch the safety net. But it's good to know I have an option. :)


Wuxiang: A Resto Review

This little restaurant on Ibanez corner J. Abad Santos (near where Little Store is) in San Juan came highly recommended.

One late afternoon in between errands in Quezon City and Makati, we decided to have really late lunch at Wuxiang.

It's a little apartment with a very spartan setup. Nothing fancy here and if you're really picky, you might label the place tacky. Haha.

We came expecting just to be fed hot, good food.

We ordered their specialty: fried chicken. The food server suggested pairing it with plain rice (although we wanted to get fried rice) so we did. We also got black almond and white almond drinks.


Dining Area

I haven't seen a tissue holder like this since grade school!

Christmas Kitsch

You know you're safe when they put your spoons and forks in hot water. Teehee.

Fried Chicken!!!

White and Black Almond on a date

Half order of fried chicken (8 pieces) was overwhelming to look at but we finished it off. Slices are small and it tastes like something your grandma would cook at home. Generous on the batter and spices but I wish they had marinated the chicken longer.

Verdict: Yummy, especially when you are sooo hungry and want something familiar and comforting. Nothing life-changing but for the price (I think less than P300 for our meal, including drinks), not bad. Service is good and waitstaff is friendly. Dining area is clean and reminds me of our grade school cafeteria. :) We didn't try the washroom though.

Would I crave this next week? I doubt. Maybe next month. And maybe next time we'll pair the chicken with fried rice or their noodles. There are other stuff on the menu worth trying.


Shabu-shabu Christmas Party

It was so good to be out with friends. And I just LOVE shabu-shabu!

These are my friends from when I still joined bazaars.

Our spread:

Dessert afterwards (crepes and coffee!!!)


Night Out!

Haven't been on a night out without C for a loooong time!

Tonight is shabu-shabu night with friends. I'm so excited!!!

Still waiting for m/c to complete but the worst is over. I think. I hope. Praying the doc clears me this weekend. I wrote about it but decided it was too gruesome to publish. Let's just say it's the kind of pain that brings out your imaginary talons. Oh dear. Haha.

For now, I am thankful for the chance to go out, eat hot and yummy food and be with friends. Thank You, Lord for simple pleasures.

I am wearing a feathered headband to add to the celebration. :D

I Believe In Father Christmas

Despite all the commercial trappings, we can dig deep and see the most basic, and most touching meaning of Christmas.

This song feels to me like the first glass of cool water in the morning. You know how that feels. Enjoy and have a very meaningful CHRISTmas!


Status Update

Facebook status and Twitter tweet: MISCARRIAGE ROCKS!

hahahaha. yes, i love sarcasm. :)


Edge of Desire

A friend shared this link on Facebook and I'm sharing it with you. I think it's a beautiful song. And a nice Christmas treat. :)

Watercress Pesto

So we tried making watercress pesto last night. It was good, I must say. Milder than basil pesto. Sorry no pictures. We were so hungry and just completely forgot to document the experiment.

Here's the quick and easy recipe, if you'd like to try it:

Puree in the blender the following:

2 cups watercress (remove the thicker stalks)
Half cup pine nuts (I throw in some walnuts too)
2 Tbsp lemon juice

Slowly add around 6 Tbsp olive oil (add more if sauce is too thick) to the puree.

Add salt and pepper to taste and stir in grated parmesan (I use maybe a cup and a half as we are cheese people).

Will try to put the pesto on baguette slices next time. Yum!


Veg Out Weekend

Not that kind of vegging out though. Just got our order of organic vegetables last night and now I need to figure out how to cook them right away (in our experience, organic veggies wilt faster than regular, store-bought stuff... methinks it's the non-use of traditional pesticides and preservatives... yes!!!) and preserve them.

I'm making watercress pesto later. We'll just probably blanch the spinach for later use.

I'm excited about the watercress pesto. First time to use watercress for that. It's usually basil that we use. Next time I'll try spinach pesto. Can't wait!

Happy Sunday!


80s vs 70s

Finally. According to this post on Jak & Jill, fashion is returning to a softer, prettier mood.

I don't think I bought any clothes this year. Really. Well, I also have the benefit of having a sewer who can make me what I want. But that, and recession saving aside, I had absolutely no love for the clothes that were in stores this year.

Black, skinny, edgy, spikey. 80s bad girl.

I am sooooo glad that we're going back to pretty, soft and curvy. Yes!


The Lord's Plans

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11

How many times have I heard that? It's an oft-quoted verse, in church, in bible studies, in greeting cards, on t-shirt prints...

It's easy to say one believes in that verse, but to believe in it wholeheartedly even when the plan is quite unclear (or not going according to how you think it should go) is a different and very difficult matter.

I've been quiet lately. With blogging and even Facebooking.

Usually when I'm quiet for a long stretch, it only means one of two things: I'm extremely busy or I'm extremely sad.

For a while, I was extremely busy. Then I became extremely sad.

I'm happy to say I'm still busy (thank You, Lord) but no longer extremely sad.

Right now, I am waiting to miscarry for the second time.

Yup, I got pregnant again. This time planned and much anticipated.

Our first home pregnancy test was positive right away. Early morning of October 7. I was due to have my period October 6. That is how regular my period is. A big blessing, when you want to get pregnant.

We were sooo happy. I couldn't go back to sleep after doing the hpt. I was already worrying about things I should eat, things I should stop doing, etc.

I had stopped running (first major sacrifice for me) the week I was due to ovulate. Didn't want to "shake up" the embryo. Hahaha.

When we confirmed the pregnancy, I started eating. A lot. A whole lot! I wanted to make sure I was providing enough nutrients to the baby.

I would talk to the baby (in my mind) when I'd take a shower, introducing it to warm water and cold water.

I slowed down considerably with driving. I became more patient and less prone to pushing the gas pedal too much.

We had to wait two weeks before we could go for ultrasound. Useless to have one too early.

It was a looong wait and we were filled with excitement and also fear. We were hoping this wouldn't turn out blighted like the first one. We felt it wouldn't be. For us, it was impossible to have another blighted ovum. The first one was too painful to bear already. Surely this one would have to be healthy.

The day for the ultrasound finally came and we were just beside ourselves with excitement. While the sonologist was preparing, I was already imagining the nurse calling in C so he could look at our little one on the ultrasound screen.

Then it happened again. Empty. Numerous previous ultrasounds have made me aware of what to look for on the screen. I knew right away. An empty gestational sac. It felt like I was sinking into a black hole. It felt horrible in a way that the word horrible can't ever begin to describe. In my mind I was tearing up the hospital sheets and pushing equipment violently to the floor. Funny now but horrible when I had all those strong emotions.

What followed was a few more weeks of waiting. A seesaw of hoping and getting disappointed.

I was depressed and didn't want to go out of the house. I didn't want to talk to anyone who knew about the pregnancy. I just couldn't deal with it. All I knew was that I had to just take it a day at a time. That there was surely going to be a day when the pain in my heart would fade.

Our OB finally told us that we should see an immunologist. She said it's a blessing that we get pregnant when we try. And it's just that my body seems to be treating the embryo as a foreign object and is rejecting it. Sometimes I think the years I've spent trying not to get pregnant has made my body so defensive, literally.

The doctor went on to say that the chances of having a healthy pregnancy are high.

That knowledge encouraged me. I was nearing wanting to slap (I'm sorry if that is so angry but that is really how I felt. I was so frustrated and terribly sad at losing another baby!) anyone who would say "oh just try again and let's see".

I poured my grief into online research. If what I suspect is right, what I have might be antiphospholipid antibody syndrome or APAS. Seems like when the body detects the embryo, the blood thickens and supply of nutrients to the placenta is blocked. This condition doesn't allow the pregnancy to continue.

Right now I'm still bleeding and will most likely miscarry in a few days (based on the timeline of my first miscarriage).

The immunologist will be back in two weeks and we'll see her and get tested. From what I've read, if I test positive for APAS, when I get pregnant again, I will have to be given low-dose aspirin, and maybe heparin injections, everyday, for the duration of the pregnancy. The goal is to thin the blood, to allow passage of nutrients into the placenta.

In an Oxford Journal online research paper, I read that women who were given the combination of aspirin and heparin stood a better chance at completing a healthy pregnancy. 76% compared to 64% for women given only aspirin or heparin and 46% for those given only aspirin.

It feels good to get into something with some knowledge about what can happen. It's also good to know that whatever happens, if it pleases the Lord to make us parents, or if it is not part of His plan for us, God plans for what is good and best for us.

I pray for grace to accept whatever that plan is.

Oh... for those of you curious to know... I also asked what causes APAS. It's not hereditary. It's actually quite common in this generation and they suspect that it's caused by stress, the environment and the food we eat. Toxins in the air and in what we put in the plants and animals we consume.

Abangan. Or in English, keep posted. I'll certainly share this exciting new journey.