Random Stuff and a Trip to Dapitan Arcade

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I’m still alive and kickin’ friends! I admit that I reached a point where I got confused about whether I should continue this blog because I just can’t find the time to update it even if there are so many things that I want to share with you. I’m a bad blogger and I’ve actually realized that much earlier yet I did not do anything about it. Does that make me worse then? Heh 🙂 The good thing though is that I am slowly gaining back some time for this blog so expect me to be slightly active henceforth.

Fast forward to November 2016, I made a huge decision in my career. As if this year isn’t full of changes yet (I got promoted in March, we moved to our new house in April, had stress-related health issues mid-year which prompted me to take a 2-month leave, etc.), I decided to quit my job and be my own boss. Now, I am free to balance my career, family and extra-curricular activities because how I spend my time is all up to me. Primarily, I will be spending more time with my son. Career-wise, I am going to do private law practice and take some consultancy work, and also start a business (I am going to tell you more about this business of mine that will open soon). That will keep me busy and hopefully not as stressed as I was when I used to go to the office.

I don’t want to drag the topic any longer as it is already getting boring. Let’s talk about the more interesting stuff, shall we?

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The first project since my resignation took effect was to decorate our house for Christmas. Fun, right? Hehe 🙂 We have a 7ft. Christmas tree but I am getting bored of our  old decors so I decided to change them. I wanted a Macy’s-slash-Power Plant-ish kind of Christmas decorations and I could not think of any other place to shop the decors than in Dapitan Arcade. As it was about lunch time when we reached the area, we looked for a restaurant first so that we can fill our tummies and get energized for an afternoon of haggling.

I’ve read about The Big Cheese and so it was pizza, pasta and chicken for lunch then! The Big Cheese is located at the 2nd floor of SJD Building along D. Tuazon in Banawe. Sans Waze, you can reach it thru EDSA, left at Quezon Ave., and right at D. Tuazon. I remember SJD Building as the first commercial building I saw at the right side of the street when we entered D. Tuazon. It is easy to locate. My only problem is that it’s at the 2nd floor and it’s a steep climb up with narrow steps on the stairs. And when you’re up at the 2nd floor, you’ll notice that the railings do not appear too safe.

Back to the food. We ordered two pizzas, Hawaiian and Cheese Overload plus some pasta and chicken with fries. They got our cheese pizza order wrong and gave us the regular cheese pizza instead. Notwithstanding the error, we’re still satisfied with our order. We liked the pizza but they’re not over-the-top good.

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Finally, we reached our destination and found stalls selling all types of Christmas decors along the streets of Kanlaon and Apo. I bought all of my decors from the stalls but did not take pictures of the vendors because I was too afraid to bring out my then 1-day old phone 🙂 I just took it out to take pictures when I entered this shop filled with lanterns and lots of Santa Claus decors.

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4ft Santa Claus, P4,500

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“It’s Christmas,” P350. The first stall I hopped into was selling this for P500. I moved to its neighbor and they’re selling it for P350. Imagine, their stalls were separated just by a chicken wire partition and there’s already a P150-peso difference between their prices! 🙂

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Same thing with this wooden Christmas train set. The first stall is selling it at P550. The neighbor sells it at P350 and can lower to P300 if I will purchase in volume.

I did not buy anything from the Santa stalls but check out my decor loots from the stalls along Kanlaon and Apo!

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Christmas LED lights in warm yellow, P150 for 100 lights. I bought 2 and it was enough to light up our 7ft slim Christmas tree. Red berries, P150 for 6 twigs. I got 3 sets of the red berries or a total of 18 twigs. Christmas balls, P170 for a set of 2 dozens. I got 8 dozens in total, 4 dozens of red balls and 4 dozens of gold balls.

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Felt ornaments, 3 for P100. I only got 9 pieces because I did some more Christmas felt ornaments on my own, plus I still have some ornaments from the US (Macy’s, Target, etc.). The abaca ribbons are about 9-10 meters long for P100. I asked the stall owner if they can make the ribbons and I paid an additional P20 for the service. I got two colors, red and gold, and for each color, they were able to make 12 pieces of ribbons.

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Up close and personal: the lights, the berries, the balls, the ribbons, and the felt ornaments 🙂

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I also bought a 9ft. long garland and asked the stall owner to decorate it with red and gold ornaments. They charged me P400 for everything including service. I added red berries and paid P150 more for that. The total price of this garland is P550. When I got home, I added some more of my DIY felt ornaments so that the garland matches my Christmas tree.

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I also bought white lanterns. I got the big ones for P400 for a circuit of 4 lanterns; the small ones for P350 for a circuit of 5 lanterns. They’re now hanging on bamboo sticks at different heights in front of our house. I think I need to add more 🙂

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I also bought a small abaca string of lights for P250. I didn’t have a specific place where to put them so I just left them on top of my buffet cabinet as is haha 🙂 I also got a shining, shimmering, splendid desk Christmas tree for P800. I displayed it alongside a musical Christmas village lantern given to me as a gift by my friends Doc Pamps and Atty. Charles, and a colorful Christmas tree acrylic painting that I made a couple of weeks back.

I also bought capiz ball lanterns for the trees in our backyard at P1,000 for a circuit of 12  lanterns. I got 2 dozens but don’t have a picture because our electrician is making some adjustments to the wires (spacing between lanterns, and extending the length so that we can plug it in at a certain socket somewhere near our roof). Unfortunately, I hugely miscalculated the number of lanterns that we need. The 2 dozens I got barely covered a branch of one of the big trees in the backyard! I don’t have plans to add any more capiz lanterns for now because I am scared of my incoming electricity bills!

Anyways, it’s looking a lot like Christmas at home and I’m excited to add more decors in the days to come. Meanwhile, here’s the picture of our Christmas tree which looks so small when scaled with our VERY high ceiling 😀 Christmas is still a few weeks to go but here’s wishing that all our Christmases will be merry and bright. Cheers!

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