Of Face Value and Peace

Yesterday, as we were waiting for a school program to start, a disco remix of Britney Spears’s “Gimme More” came on. The song is not exactly my cup of vodka but I usually just suffer through it, nodding along.

Last night, I had a different reaction. My toddler was with me and when she’s around, the “no swearing” rule is enforced. It’s not just when we speak, mind you. We also steer clear of TV shows, movies or music that feature coarse or sexually explicit language or violent rhetoric (e.g. “May you rot in hell”, “Dadanak ang dugo, gaganti kami” ). It was mainly because my daughter was there that I began to pay attention to Spears’s song, as well as the rap/hip-hop songs that followed.

I stiffened.

I don’t advocate censorship. I just believe in being age-appropriate. Should children be listening to songs about putting women in their place, rubbing up against each other in the club, fist fights, and exchanging bodily fluids? I’m surprised none of the school administrators noticed how many times the words “bitch” and “niggah” was blasted through the grounds.

The school my sister attends is a “peace zone”. So much is it a “peace zone” that my sister’s batch, who were performing Hugo’s Les Miserables, had to argue the merits of using prop guns in a musical set in the French Revolution.Another presentation, an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, had a script peppered with “friggin”, “darn it” and “heck”. Gentle introductions to swearing. Unlike the more obvious guns in my sister’s play, these words, like the hip hop songs being played during intermissions, made not a bleep on their teachers’ radars.

Peace springs from a collective worldview. There are no superficial solutions. Forging a culture of mutual respect is guaranteed to be more effective than a temporary gun ban. Peace starts when we choose our words well.


Make something this weekend: Baby Mobile

Being a mom can be tough. Finding an age-appropriate, engaging baby toy? Sometimes even tougher (though I’m not sure if this is because I’m in the Philippines or if I’m just too picky).

Anyways, for weeks now, I have been searching for a baby mobile that a) is high contrast b) not electronic / no sounds — scared of battery leaks and c) costs no more than 2,000 pesos.


Let’s just say that after scouring The Landmark at TriNoMa, Rustan’s (in Shang, Gateway AND Makati –I luff Rustan’s!) and Robinson’s (Galleria and Manila), I decided to make my own.*

So here’s my little baby mobile guide.

Important: remember to wash ALL of your materials (including the base of the mobile) in baby-safe detergent BEFORE you make the mobile.

Step 1: Choose materials and patterns. I got my pattern inspiration from here. I chose felt because it’s low-maintenance. You don’t have to do any “finishing” or “sealing” on its edges to prevent fraying.

Continue reading “Make something this weekend: Baby Mobile”

Outfit Post: A study in purple

It’s been a busy February! Now that I’m back at my (sometimes figurative) desk at the office, things have been picking up! Though I’m thankful for the work avalanche, my mile long to-do list has prevented me from accomplishing anything on my 2012 list.

Anyways, here’s an outfit post.

I recently bought a lovely pair of boat shoes from Anthology Shoes. They’re perfect for “walk-athon” work days! Bag from SOS (the School of Satchel).



And here’s an example of what I’ve been wearing most weekends:

Jewel-toned dresses and my hot pink flats from Sugarbabes (yes, it’s a kiddie brand!). 🙂