Sunday, August 31, 2008

Stone Art at CNE - Awesome!

The Garden show at CNE does not only showcase a wide variety of plants but it hosts a series of shows that would entertain anyone interested (or bored from shopping)...hehe. One show is about this incredible man who piles stones one on top of another without falling over. He has this unbelievable grasp of the center of gravity on each stone or creation he does. Some garden owners will like it enough to have one in their garden. I know I would... if I have a garden and only if I can afford it. I do not know how much it will cost but in time when things are ready... i probably would ask. For now, I am just thrilled at watching and enjoying the magic this man has in his hands.

You know what?? I think... the man has laser vision and he uses this laser vision to glue those stones together. That's it... i'm sure of it. :)

oh my... those were really good! But I won't stay near it though, not when the wind is blowing in my garden (wishful thinking). Looking at them is one thing...understanding the science behind it is another.

The only thing that is keeping those stones from falling down is what we call center of gravity. The stones were arranged such that the combined center of gravity prevents it from falling. I will leave the rest of the explanations to Mr Google.

For now watch the man do magic on the following video.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

CNEs Direct Energy Center and my Loot!

This building is the first we passed by upon entering the Princess Gates of the CNE. This is my favorite part of CNE because inside are showcases of everything I love. As you can see in the above cropped map, it houses the A. At home Pavilion, where appliances, furnitures, home gadgets are found. B, the International Pavilion where products from all over the world can be found. C. warehouse Outlets - some designer products like Revlon, Fairweather, Levis outlets are. D. IAMs superdogs where they hold dog shows and cat shows. The most beatiful cats and dogs can be seen here. They are so adorable. The Garden Show is also a must see.

A shot of the building facade.

The Lobby is full of people trying to find something to spend their precious money. Just like me, I do not know what I want to buy but I will know when I see it. I saw the hot water tub complete with all the water jet massage apparatus and I wanted to buy it ... but since i don't have a place to put it in...maybe next CNE or the next or the next..hehe.

This booth sells products from India. Lovely, lovely products.

This is only one of a few Philippine booths. I bought Boy Bawang and Ding Dong snack here.

My son's favorite spot. Yup, he asked if he can saty there while we do our window shopping.

And finally, after 2 hours of walking through this maze of woderful things, what did I find worth buying? A gazillion products and I bought only two things. If I have lots of money to splurge, I guess I could use a few more to tuck into my bag. The following pics are the two fortunate things that came home with me that day.
This is a variety of the San Francisco Plant (as we know back home). It is actually called "Croton" plant here. This is one of my favorite San Francisco Plant because of it's curly leaves. The only missing is the various colors that the leaves would exhibit. The leaves are all green right now with small dots of yellow. I hope in time the colors will come out. I still have to buy my San Francisco a pot to grow in.

This is the second that I bought. When we passed by the booth exhibiting products of South Africa, these artistic paintings have caught my eyes. The colors are so vivid. They were drawn on a clothe and they would make nice wall decors when framed properly. They come in different sizes and I chosed a poster size painting. Now, I only need to have it framed. It will go very nicely on my bedroom wall and would match the animal print blanket I have on my bed. Hehe... feeling nasa safari...

I would like to come back to that booth next year to get another one.

That ends the diary of a shopaholic. :)

Friday, August 29, 2008

Let's Go to the EX!!

The last hurrah of summer! Children always knew when summer is ending. It is when parents start to plan going to the CNE (Canadian National Exhibition) Place. The slogan is “Let’s go to the EX!” where EX means the exhibition place. It is the neighbour of Ontario Place I previously posted. The EX is open starting August 16 to September 1. Yup, September 2 is the first day of school. Some students would feel sad when it’s CNE time but then after accepting that it inevitable, they decided that they might as well have fun. The exhibition place offers a gazillion activities for everybody. From children to seniors, there will be something quite interesting to see and do. The link above will give you all the information about activities in this place.

The Map above shows the CNE place. Click here to enlarge and be able to read the various information and legends. All places are accessible by foot. To be able to see everything, one must come early in the morning to cover as much ground.

For seniors, for pople who are carrying babies, or people who has disabilities or those that are simply tired can ride this train. It goes around the place at a specific shedule.

Children would be attracted by the fun rides and carnival type activities.

This building houses the pavilions of shopping galore. If you enlarge the map above, it is the huge building top right. It has the international pavilion that sells various products from all over the world. I will do this as a separate post because this is my favorite place in CNE.

Street Performances are all over the place too. These gentlemen are performing acrobatic stunts. They are very good, doing all those summersaults and human pyramids.

Part of the Candian Forces Display.

Part of the Farm showcase. Various animals are kept in the Farm building. People can pet and feed some of them.

This man is truly talented. I will post his talent on a separate entry. Watchout for him.
I guess the next few posts will be bits and pieces of our CNE adventure. There were quite alot of exciting and interesting activities worth sharing.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Lowly..nah.. Noble Galunggong – and its memories

This was our dinner last night. I was able to find some frozen Galunggong fish (Maquereau Mackerel) at one the Chinese store near our family dentist clinic. I looked at its familiar features. Remembering the numerous times this fish has graced our table when I was growing up. During those needy times when everything is so expensive that we have to tighten our belts more than ever. I used to hate this fish during those times. It’s either fried galunggong, or paksiw na galunggong (cooked in vinegar), or daing na galunggong (sun dried), or ginataang galunggong (cooked in coconut milk). I think we have practically overused this poor fish for the longest time. We cook it in all possible ways. I can still hear myself and my siblings saying in chorus “ Galunggong again??!!”. But now... I am sure that if it weren’t for the lowly Galunggong, I would not be where I am .. right now.

It’s been awhile since I last tasted the Galunggong. We call it “Gigi” then. I don’t know why we call it with that name and I did not ask for I just had enough of it to even care. I guess it’s safe to say that it’s been 20 years since I last tasted it. Now, when I saw it, I decided that it’s time for my kids to meet the fish that has fed and nourished us during tough times. It maybe lowly then but now I only think of it as a noble fish ... an unsung hero. Worthy of being weaved into life stories to be told and passed to future generations.

So in between those spoonfuls of fish and rice are conversations of times of old and the lessons to be learned. My kids actually like it. I even told them, it’s good with catsup. They won’t try it though.. L

That’s the story of the noble Galunggong fish.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Chinese Lantern Festival Continued

White Elephants!

Egypt... well represented!

Total Bling bling !!

Magnificent! The reflection of the lights on the black water is so intense.

We went as far as Paris! LOL

The end of our adventure...that was one fine walk.

Chinese Lantern Festival at Ontario Place

Ontario Place has another magic up its sleeve this summer. It’s the Rogers Chinese Lantern Festival. It’s a collection of huge lanterns depicting various architectural, nature and artistic creations all over the world. It opens around 7pm to be able to capture the darkness and display the magnificent use of lights and shades.

The area used for this showcase covered almost a third of the whole Ontario place as shown below. 32 majestic lantern sets are distributed all over this location. It’s a very nice night to get some walk and enjoy the lights. The map of the place and the distribution of the lanterns (as well as a brief description of each)can be found here.

I have uploaded pictures I’ve taken. I may have not captured everything but these are my favourites.

I'd like to upload more... hmmm... should I? There were so many favorites that I'd like to share. So maybe next post I will upload the rest of them? We'll see.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Moon and Me

The moon..
It’s full tonight
Amidst the dark night
Without a star in sight.

Out for a walk
Without anyone to talk
Wondering around the block

The moon..
First peeking behind a cloud
Then there he is full and proud
Inquiring why my heart is bowed

My heart is bleeding
My hope is fading
My faith is crumbling
To the dark night I’m slowly disappearing

My lady, my dearest princess
Despair has gripped your heart in darkness
Let not your spirit wallow in emptiness
For I can see the road before you filled with happiness

Let me light your path through this vagueness
Let me build you new hope as a fortress
Until you heal your faith strong and dauntless
Until your heart can fly again, soaring the sky unrelentless.

I’m glad you’re here dear moon
I’m glad you asked me why
I’m glad you made the dark sky
A bit brighter, a bit less sly

I promise you this for sure
I will heal my heart, I will endure
I will see your promise of the future
And I will rise and soar with you forever and more.


I was awed by the beauty of the moon one night. It has inspired me to write a short poem to express the depth of wonder I feel when it's at its fullest. The way it reaches out to the melancholy of the night, waiting, foreboding. Yet .. I feel no fear but instead a feeling of lightness, an overwhelming emotion of peace and tranquility.

...hehe... i'm being sentimental...not a comedian. LOL ... in between those lines, although in all seriousness, there are 'manananggal", "tikbalang" (creatures of the night), peeking and grinning at me ready to pounce when ever I give them the signal...hehe.

But really!! I am serious!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Filipinos making wave and Melissa R!

Part of the finale of the concert held at Ontario Place in celebrating the festival of Filipinos Making Wave was the performance of a Filipina who became one of the finalists on the show Pussycat Dolls. To some, the term Pussycat Doll seemed unfamiliar. I do not know for sure but in our household it is pretty popular. My daughter had her eyes glued to each and every episode/airing of that show. She practically knows how each contestant to the very core. She was, quite obviously, was the one who was so excited to see the popular pinay in person and performing.

The very talented and beautiful pinay is Melissa Reyes, known in the show as Melissa R. A petit girl, gauging from her physical appearance, is about 5 feet tall and less than a hundred pounds. She is truly beautiful with a strong voice ( I don’t know where that voice is coming from since she has a very small build).

I attached a video of one of her performance.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Mikey Bustos at Filipinos Making Wave Festival

Part of the celebration in the Filipinos Making Wave Festivals was Mikey Bustos’ concert. He was among the top ten finalists on Canadian Idol in 2003. You can learn more about him just by googling his name in the World Wide Web.

It’s really my first time to hear him sing. I probably heard about him from the past but never had the time to find out anything about him. I guess I missed something worth knowing and being proud of. He is really good in all aspect (talent and character specially) and until now, 5 years from his idol time, he continiously thank people who have supported him then.

He sang several songs that made us even more proud as Filipinos. Wikepedia described him as a slightly strange looking young man with a shaved head and a voice of an angel. I don't think strange looking is a problem or matters at all. He is all Filipino in body, mind, soul and voice.

I wish him all the best and I’m sure he will excel because he is in his element, in his own universe.

I should remember to buy one of his CDs... one of this days. :) Promised myself!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Filipinos Making Wave Festival at Ontario Place

August 15 to August 17 is a special weekend for Filipinos at Ontario Place. Ontario place is internationally acclaimed cultural, leisure and entertainment parkland located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The complex extends throughout three man-made islands along the Lake Ontario waterfront. It caters to the different cultures Canada has and allows these cultures to express themselves for all to learn and appreciate them. More information about this place can be found on the link above.

The Filipinos Making Wave festival consists of various activities featuring Filipino culture expressed in songs, dances, food and arts.

Booths showcasing Filipino crafts, books and movies can be found here. This is the best time to bring friends of different race because they will surely enjoy the celebration.

The real reason why I wanted to see this festival!!! The sago at gulaman, turon, bbq, pansit and so on. It was like a time travel back home.

Many of our kababayans take this opportunity to share our culture through dances like the picture above.

Even Filipino children were so proud to show how rich our traditions are.

There are also concerts held on the three days of festival. On the day we went there, it was Lirio Vital who entertained us with songs of old and made our longing hearts dance reminiscing times of what was once our world.

Other artists that made the festival memorable that day was Mikey Bustos, the Filipino finalist on Candian Idol and Melisa R., the finalist in the Pussy Cat Dolls. I will post a separate entry for the these artists.

Occasions like these are important in a place considered as a cultural mossaic of different races. This will allow each one to learn more of each other, appreciate and respect each others differences and allow growth and comaraderie.