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The Stray Russian Blue

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A Day to Sightseer: The Spirit of Bethlehem and Museum of Miniatures

When you just want to rejuvenate after a week of arduous days in the office, surely you needed a break and yes, I definitely needed one. Having mentioned in my previous blogs that going out hasn’t been my thing and yet here I was, taking a tour, I wanted to try something new to regain my ‘A’ game other than sleeping all day. Why not, right?

I’d like to begin this blog by showcasing the experience I had on the place. It was last Saturday when I decided to visit an exhibit in Barangka Marikina City, located at the 2nd level of E-com Building in Riverbanks Center called The Spirit of Bethlehem and Museum of Miniatures. I would consider it (for me) a hidden exhibit. Why? Because there are no directions or any signs of a museum ahead (none at all) I had a bit of a hard time looking for it, (I don’t know maybe the fact that I do not usually go out made me a not-so street wise person) so to be able to get to my destination, I needed to approach a guard just to save my time and to prevent myself from getting lost because I was new to the place. Thanks, Grab car! 

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What I actually loved about my tour last Saturday was that the time that my feet stepped on the entrance I could already feel the serenity of the place. The white and golden brown paint on the walls contribute a good ambiance to the entirety of the place. It depicts the look of a typical museum. There are several collections inside as expected,  I was able to enjoy scrutinizing every pieces of sculptures/figurines that they have included, there are also little information accompanied in each pieces.  I thank myself for being such an early bird because aside from being the first one to arrive on this museum, I was also able to tour on the place peacefully.

The Spirit of Bethlehem is said to be a private collection of over 500 belens/nativity sets/posters/paintings and sculptures from all over the world, collected thru decades of devotion to the Infant Jesus, by the owner, Gigi Abaya-Carlos. I find it amazing because there are nativity sets that have been bought on the 1900s and yet you won’t see any damages from it. I assume they really did well on preserving such collections.

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As you can see these pieces of the holy family is originated from Bethlehem and the other, from Italy.

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This one is not your typical Christmas tree. The holes that you can see served as the home of every little nativity sets. The lighting on the inside made it solemnly magical.

                                                                       ———-

On the other hand, Museum of Miniatures is just a step away from The Spirit of Bethlehem; it’s a two in one museum, as I may call it. The miniatures featured on it are part of the collection of the late Aleli Vengua who passionately handcrafted most of the pieces herself. It is said that the materials used on every pieces are mostly from scrap items such as plastic, wood, aluminum, fabric, and glass. Just look how amazing these tiny chairs are.

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Some of the miniatures are also intricately designed that would make it harder to imagine it was only Aleli Vengua alone who created it. I wonder how many years it took her to finish a miniature of a living room.

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and look at my close-up photograph of Vengua’s miniature of a Christmassy living room.

Some of these frames hold the articles regarding the making of the incredible small world of Aleli Vengua.

Oh look, the first admission ticket on Aleli Vengua’s Museum of Miniatures. It’ll only cost you P5.00 for adults and P2.50 for kids back then and look how huge it is, 8.5 by 11, I guess? Incredible!museum 3 first ticket.jpg

 

To this end, I would say The Spirit of Bethlehem and the Museum of Miniatures is a good recommendation, in fact, I would highly-recommend this place for people who wish to unwind and relax like me, people who has been seeking an inspiration for paintings, sculptures, interior design are also advisable to visit the place because why not? Check it out so would know why. The general admission for both The Spirit of Bethlehem and Museum of Miniatures are only P75.00 per head. There will be 20% discount for senior citizens, just show your ID. Now with teachers with ID and children either with the height below 4ft. or younger than 6 yrs. old (with proof, of course) will take a tour on the museum for FREE but this one is not applicable to children’s group tour/field trip. The museum is open from Friday to Sunday only, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM but if you have an appointment with the place or you’ve booked an event (recommended for a group of 30 persons or more) on the said museum, Monday to Thursday schedule will be available.

I’ve been totally in awe by the sight of the featured collections. All of it was just so amazingly created.

Credits to the owner of the photograph used as my featured photo.

 

Sad As Fuck: How Early 2000s Emo Became a Subject of Scorn and Salvation — Consequence of Sound

Photo by Philip Cosores Punk as Fuck is a monthly column in which Associate Editor Collin Brennan discusses issues in punk music and culture. This month’s column looks back on early 2000s emo and explores how the public’s perception of the genre has evolved after a decade under the influence. A few days ago, the folks over…

via Sad As Fuck: How Early 2000s Emo Became a Subject of Scorn and Salvation — Consequence of Sound

A Day at The Oatmeal

“Today I don’t feel like doing anything…” What a new song..

 

Yes, I really don’t feel like doing anything today. Supposedly, I am to blog about weird and hilarious internet trends in 2016 but it seems like my focus and concentration to work on it isn’t there for now so what I did is that I browsed sites which I usually stop by: Facebook, Twitter…etc.  In my Facebook profile, I happen to notice this certain page that is included in my liked pages which (kind of) surprised me because I haven’t checked it out before.

The page titled as The Oatmeal. I checked it out, saw the linked website and voila! It fascinates and entertains me. According to the great man named Matthew Inman, the owner of the site, The Oatmeal is a compilation of HIS comics and blogs alone; there are also some of his published books that is already in the process of advertisement. His topics focused on let’s say simple comics/cartoon but with very clever ending. This is what gets my attention. I love clever endings; those with dark humor and whimsy idea but still end up entertaining and …what else?

It makes you think twice before you proceed to the next comic.

I also admire how he illustrates his characters. They don’t look good, the imperfections are there and that’s what I think is amazing maybe because it also what makes the entire site comical. I’ve read some of its comics and so far my favorite among all his works is the “How to be perfectly unhappy” because I relate to it, as simple as that. Let me just share two of Matthew Inman’s comics that really got me.

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“My Dog is a Paradox”. After I’ve read this comic, I suddenly thought of my dog (Yes, aside from cats, I now have a dog) Inman is right. Our dogs won’t be there for so long unlike us. Their life span is only around 10 to 13 years and after that death will come and get them away from us. I actually had this sudden realization about my dear pets. My cat has been there for me since I was nine, I have developed a deep relationship with it because of course, and she’s the only thing I had when my parents died. (Let’s cut that, I hate dramas.) And yet now I have a dog, a gift from a friend of mine who I happened to see seldom, I just thought of her through the dog.

It seem strange to me.

Within only three months, I was able to get close with the dog, our favorite playtime was the “fetch-thing” the one they oddly love to play and he’s very clingy I don’t know but I think he’s clingier than my kitty… He licks my face all the time and Inman is right, my dog loves to lick his balls which made me sometimes stay away from him afterwards.

Though we just met and I’ve been with him only three months from now, I already consider my dog as my best friend and I think we should, right?

(This comic is quite long but I can assure you it’s worth the read. Keep reading!)

Creativity is like breathing.”

crea1crea2crea3crea4crea5crea6crea7crea8crea9This one serves as a piece of advice to me. I am a blogger and sometimes I also feel like everything I do is a mess which occasionally I guess, is right. My mind has to run and run to all the thoughts that I think is crucial just to come up with a topic but then still I have stumbled on writer’s block. There was a time when I really don’t know what to type about… what to tackle, or anything I was simply clueless of what to do. I realized then that I really need to breathe. I need to rejuvenate, get out (which seriously not my thing) and have a bit of fun. Such a good advice for suffocating artists!

 

Overall, The Oatmeal is a good recommendation for those people who wish to brighten their apathetic days. The site does not simple revolve around a single concept but he’s intention to entertain and just create is there, his readers just have to appreciate his works all the time, no matter how simple it’ll be.

 

Check out the site here: http://theoatmeal.com/

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — When you’re looking for love, most consider common ground a good place to start. “You have to have the same morals, and the same values,” said Leslie from Philadelphia. Fellow Philly resident Christina told Eyewitness News, “You got to like the same type of food, actors, movies.” Yvette Williams of the Northeast…

via The App That Finds You Love Based On What You Hate — CBS Philly

Margarita Kareva and her stunning creativity in Photography

When we say creative photography, it shows the genuine and uniqueness of the photographer coming from the photos taken by himself. It stands out among the rest and will surely be the apple of the eye once it is presented.

This photographer from Ekaterniburg (Russia) proved that creativity in photography has no limit. Margarita Kareva who spends visiting photo shoot and master classes around the world also do individual staged photo shoot, wedding photography and Love story, Art projects (the one I’m really fond of) and Advertising photography as the scope of her work.

I am absolutely impressed with her shoots so I would gladly share it out to my dear readers. Here are some of Kareva’s photographs that not only I, has been captivated and stunned by its beauty but most probably you and most of her clients as well.

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These photographs are all from Kareva’s different album. Aren’t they all stunning and creatively perfect?

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Not only with how Margarita Kareva shows her creativity in all of her photographs I am very impressed, the Russian designer (I assume he is) also took a great part in such a fairy tale idea. It really complements to the background, the scenery, and some of the animals involved. Wonderful!

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All of them are just pretty amazing.

Aside from making fairy tales to life, Margarita Kareva is also offering training of image processing in Adobe Photoshop. This can either be in person or online through Skype. To check more about Kareva, see it here: http://kareva-margo.com/

Men’s guidelines to end their girlfriends Valentine’s Day in seventh heaven

 

 

No more than two weeks before Saint Valentine’s Day. Some men already have plans how to make that day unforgettable and special (at least for them) and also there were some who until now clueless of how are they going to celebrate this so-called lover’s day (because people usually celebrate it with their partner) with their girlfriends. Just in case, you’re one of those men who haven’t planned anything yet this guidelines to wrap-up her Valentine’s will, I think, help you figure out what would be the perfect date or To-do for your girlfriend consider the coming Valentine’s day UNFORGETTABLE.

 

So here it goes.

 

First of all, we both know there are different types of women in this world: the chic, the geeky-woman, the one-of the-boys, the conservative type…just to name a few. If you’re following my site, you are probably familiar with my blog “What other people think on a boyish chic?” from there, I mention the types of women not to mention the blog really focus only to what are those boyish chic. Who are they, what they do and what they feel towards people who bad-mouthed them due to misinterpretations. https://thestrayrussianblue.wordpress.com/2016/01/15/what-other-people-think-on-a-boyish-chic/

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  •  Walking, strolling on a park enjoying the beautiful and captivating scenery of nature around you would be the perfect Valentine’s date for your nature-lover girlfriend. Simply because this type of women appreciate the beauty of her surroundings just as how she appreciates your presence. If you’re going to ask me between day and night of roaming around the park, I prefer during the night not only because I am not used to bunch of people but also because I do not like the brightness of sun.

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  • Watch all the hot and trending showing movies in cinemas talk about Fifty shades Darker, everybody’s waiting for that controversial movie and surely you’re movie enthusiast girlfriend will enjoy it, knows all the movies to watch on that day and if you’re lucky, she’ll be the one to choose it for you and you’ll never have to worry choosing which of them she’ll like.

Want some suggestions? John Wick, The Space Between Us, Havenhurst, The Lego Batman, The Great Wall…

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  • A day of food-trip. Oh yes! Food! , says your foodie girlfriend. It is not that she’s a glutton maybe she just adores food that much. Obviously, a date with all the food that you’ve been longing to taste around you is the best Valentine’s date ever for a food-lover lady. Surely you won’t be surprise if you get yourself broke just for a day. It’s good to have back-ups, right?

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  • Valentine’s Day filled with extreme adventures is what your fearless and outgoing girlfriend would definitely enjoy. Let her try the next levels of zip lines, bungee jumping, sky diving or maybe go hiking as well, end your date night pampering yourselves on a spa to relax.  Why not try the wine bath at Aire Ancient Baths in New York City (I just saw this featured on Insider travel)

Couple browsing in a bookstore in Prenzlauer Berg in Berlin Germany. Image shot 08/2009. Exact date unknown.

  • A stroll to book museums bounded by collections of classics and modern books, miniatures and exhibits matches your geek and artistic girlfriend who appreciates arts and literature of all ages. It doesn’t matter if you do not feel the same (because I could sense a little violent reaction from men out there) by just keeping yourself occupied through exploring the place, checking out the pieces would surely eliminate your mind from being uninterested to the place. Look at your girl; if she enjoys it, aren’t you supposed to feel the same? Don’t forget to buy her a new book before the date ends!

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  • Stay-cation: movie marathon, games enjoying your Xbox or Playstation, eating whatever you both feels to buy, a simple and gamer girlfriend will surely mark the coming Valentine’s day fun and already special most especially if you let her win in all the games that you’re going to play. (Silly.) But seriously, gamers love to play all the games it doesn’t even matter if it decades old if it is still fun to play, they will play it. So if you wanted to make your girl exuberant and glad make sure to buy a new game earlier by now, you never know how much it’ll surprise her especially if you get to buy those that would squeeze her enthusiasm so much.

 

And lastly,

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  • A collection of new make-up kits: lippies, the limited edition mascara or whatsoever, the widespread black mask that could remove her white heads… etc. will absolutely make your beauty-conscious girlfriend’s heart leaps. She takes care of her looks very much that she always wanted to look good in front of you. So when the time that you’ll buy her those that I’ve mentioned, she will probably thinks you appreciate her effort for that and I surely think you guys really do.

 

There you go the guidelines in making your girl perfectly fine this coming Valentine’s Day. I hope you get to take ideas from it if not, then you’re completely in trouble because YOU ARE RUNNING OUT OF TIME TO PREPARE!

I always love this quotation saying that once a person loves you, all the imperfections of him/her will all become beautiful. At the end of day, no matter how much time you consumed or the efforts that you exerts just to make that day special, little or not, your girl will surely appreciate it because it’s you who made it. I’m pretty sure she’ll do the same effort to make you happy on that day. Just appreciate her as well.

 

Good luck!

VARIETY:Facebook Is Testing Snapchat-Like Stories in Mobile App

 

Facebook is taking more cues from Snapchat: The social network is testing Snapchat-like stories in its mobile app in Ireland, and has plans to bring the format to additional countries in the coming months, Business Insider was first to report Wednesday.

The new format, which went live in Facebook’s mobile app in Ireland this month, allows users to share photos and more as part of their personal stories with their friends and followers. Media shared via these stories disappears after 24 hours, and won’t be posted to a user’s regular news feed.

Stories are being displayed on top of the news feed, much in the same way Instagram integrated the Stories format last August.

At the time, Instagram’s head of product Kevin Weil readily admitted in a conversation with Variety that the format was heavily inspired by Snapchat, but also said that he would expect it to be adopted by other apps in the future. “Stories is going to be a format that a lot of experiences are going to adopt over time,” he said.

It’s no surprise that Facebook would follow Instagram in copying Snapchat, especially given the success that Instagram has seen with the format: Facebook said in November that more than 100 million of Instagram’s users look at Stories every single day.

What’s more, Instagram has already demonstrated that you can turn these eyeballs into ad dollars. Instagram began to test full-screen ads between individual stories with inventory from 30 advertisers including Netflix, AirBnB, Nike and GM.

via Facebook Is Testing Snapchat-Like Stories in Mobile App — Variety

Are you fond of using these fonts?Stop it now.

Credit: Getty images

 

Like most rational people, I’ve never been a fan of Comic Sans. In fact, I die a little inside when I see that this font is still used on some websites and blogs! Imagine my delight when I happened upon a website called BanComicSans.com, whose sole purpose is to banish this font to the nether regions of the Internet.

Their online petition (that’s right, they started a petition) has attracted more than 5,000 signatures, which leads me to believe that many people really, truly and passionately dislike Comic Sans. But let me be devil’s advocate for just a minute here, because as much as Comic Sans makes my toes curl, it’s not even the worst font out there.

Typography is pretty important — in fact, it can speak louder than words. I liken it to our style of clothing, which speaks to who we are. How many times have you met someone and based solely on how they dressed, instantly thought they were cool and someone you want to talk to?

That same process happens every time someone lands on a website. In a split second, we take in the typography, the colors, the imagery, the white space, the overall style. In that split second, we make a judgment: is this somewhere want to hang out for a few seconds/minutes, or am I automatically discounting this and bouncing away?

Comic Sans makes people bounce. It’s that awful.

But like I said, some fonts are even more offensive and awful. Here are 10 examples Carly Stec over at HubSpot came up — I made a visual out of her list because you have to see these bad boys to truly appreciate just how much they need to die:

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Originally posted on Inc.com

 

I never thought Times New Roman made it on the list. Do you have any idea why it does? I agree on the rest though.

Resto Review: SEARED

Located at Ortigas technopoint along Julia Vargas Avenue, this resto happened to be one of the unbelievable burgeoning restaurants nearest from our office. Seared successfully awaken my interest and attention so last Friday night, my colleague and I together with my boss took the chance to get a taste of it.

First of all, I would like to commend the good ambiance. It wasn’t only I but also the people with me who admired the modern and minimalist interior design.seared-6

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Our first minutes of stay were jovial and relaxing. The servers and crews were also nice. They were all approachable and hospitable that we didn’t have a hard time doing a follow-up with our orders. I understand that it took time for our orders to arrive because it is meat, guys. It has to be well-cooked but not all the time, it depends.

Seared has a variety of food to choose from but their specialty focused on meat because the resto serves lunch and dinner. We tried their Ultimate Platter, the God Father (An all-meat dish), the Beef and Cheese Quesadilla.   seared-2  I’m quite disappointed with it because quesadillas are meant to be grilled. Their beef and cheesy quesadilla isn’t that grilled and a little bit uncooked, it would be better if it is more grilled, the God father platter almost flop just because of its pork chop. They were all plain and kind of bland. It’s quite expensive as well (P1, 485.00) but overall, it’s still good naman.seared-4

It simply needs more flavors for a better taste. We also tried their Murdock Chicken wings which really astounded us because it was presented differently than that of the usual spicy Buffalo wings. The chicken wings are simply fried; the spicy sauce that is supposed to be mixed with it is already prepared. Now, it is your choice if you’d like to take a dip or not. Of course, you will, right?

We also took a taste of their Twisted Poutine Fries which is good but I would say, there isn’t any difference of it when compared to McDonald’s fries aside from its pricey cost. Hmmm… I’m sorry but if I knew it earlier, I would have gotten McDonald’s instead. It is way cheaper than Seared’s fries that is worth (P175.00).seared-3

Seared’s Burger Malcom’s X is your typical burger with egg. The only difference of it from any kind of burger aside from again, its pricey cost (P395.00) is its oozing oily meat paired with curly fries. We loved it but you guys have to watch your diet if you are currently into it.

I would say Seared is good but they’re having the need to improve the food quality. The price is quite unreasonable for food serving. We ordered their “tossed salad” for the side dish and we got disappointed with the serving itself. Our P75.00 for a single order of it deserves more than just a tart-bowl or a cup. The ambiance is very nice as I’ve said. The service is thumbs-up.

So far, I must say that Seared haven’t achieved their belief on “Affordable quality food and dining satisfaction”. The gastronomic experience is there but yet it is lacking.

In my opinion, one thing that the Seared need right now, is a good website for their future customers. A little information from different sites: opentable.com, tripadvisor.com…Etc. are not enough for starters like Seared (established only in 2015) they still need to be known by many people. This is just a suggestion. For the better, I think.

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I’m still looking forward for that “More selections” though.

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