Monday, December 31, 2012


I made this collage years ago, before I knew about PhotoShop and other editing softwares.  These were my early attempts at shooting flowers.  The pink and white lilies were taken at the Rockefeller Center, the vibrant yellow flowers  at Central Park, both in NYC.  The red and purple flowers were taken in London---at the Buckingham Palace garden and outside a restaurant called Blue Door Bistro.

I haven't done much traveling this year, and I miss it.  I miss the adventure, the sense of wonder in seeing something new, strange and wonderful.  Looking forward to new experiences in 2013.

Thank you to the fine ladies who host these two wonderful memes.  And to blogging friends who visited and continue to visit this page, my heartfelt 'thank you'.  May the New Year bring us joy, good health, prosperity and new adventures!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Pink-striped Trumpet Lily

 Lirio, Pink-striped Trumpet Lily, Crinum Latifolium L.

I have posted this flower before but I left that pot to my old neighbor when I moved to this townhouse last year.  This is a new pot of Lirio given by my new neighbor who suddenly got sick and had to move in with his married son.  She left a few of her flowers with me, and these flowers remind me of her cheerful smiles.

These are the first buds of the pink-striped Lirio.

Friendship marks a life even more deeply than love.  Love risks degenerating into obsession, friendship is never anything but sharing.  ~ Elie Wiesel

It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn't use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like "What about lunch?" ~ A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

X/ABC Wednesday

@ mirandablue
An X-shaped sculpture that functions as a light fixture at the Serendra Piazza.

Wishing you a  X'mas
overflowing with
Love and Laughter! 

Linking to ABC Wednesday

Monday, December 24, 2012

Let there be light!/Mellow Yellow Monday

 “May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.” 
~ J.R.R. Tolkien

However you and your family celebrate Christmas, I wish you this:  Let there be light!
Hanging capiz lanterns at Greenbelt

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Yellow Hibiscus

I have been stalking my mother's hibiscus since the first bud started to show in late November.  Because the buds were in peach, I was expecting a peach-colored hibiscus.

I was pleasantly surprised when it bloomed into a lovely shade of lemon yellow. 

“Would you like to know your future?
If your answer is yes, think again.
Not knowing is the greatest life motivator.
So enjoy, endure, survive each moment as it comes to you in its proper sequence---
a surprise.” ~ Vera Nazarian

 “One of the most beneficial and valuable gifts we can give to ourselves in this life: is allowing ourselves to be surprised! It is okay if life surprises you. Its a good thing!” 
~ C. JoyBell C.



 This is one of my favorite shops---the shop smells soooo good!
You can smell the refreshing scents a few meters away.

 And their Christmas poster is quite attractive, too.

Lush @ Bonifacio High Street
Linking to Signs, Signs

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

W/ABC Wednesday

A logo of the W High Street Building

W High Street is a sky-scraper at the corner of 28th Street and 11th Avenue in Bonifacio Global City, right beside Bonifacio High Street, an al fresco mall.

I have walked past this building countless of times when I jog/brisk walk around High Street.  And I had been curious about a crowd of well-dressed young people waiting in line at the lobby on some nights.  I would have checked it out but my well-worn running shoes seem out of place.  A wandering night-owl told me recently that there is a lounge bar at the roof-deck of W High Street called Skye, a popular bar in the Manila club scene.  The building itself, in terms of design, is unremarkable.  But I tend to wobble around the corner of this building when I see sleek cars in the Lamborghini and Audi showrooms---they make me whistle under my breath.  Well, a Lamborghini is not exactly in my wish list [driving a Lamborghini around here is reprehensible, in my opinion] but makes me wonder if there is really such a thing as a winning streak.:p

Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.” ~ Epictetus

Linking to ABC Wednesday

Monday, December 17, 2012

Sparkle/Mellow Yellow Monday

 Sparkling Christmas trees illuminate Greenbelt park every night and for the rest of the holiday season.

"We shall find peace,  We shall hear angels, we shall see the sky sparkling with diamonds." ~ Anton Chekov

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Queen of the Night

Epiphyllum oxypetalum, Night-blooming Cereus, Queen of the Night

I noticed this flowering vine in the yard of my friend's neighbor a couple of weeks ago.   It was already dark but there was a street lamp just outside the garden.  My friend was laughing at me while I was clinging at the wrought iron fence to get a better shot.  I have forgotten this flower until my brother saw the images while browsing through the same folder for photos of his youngest son. Turned out, my sis-in-law cultivated this flowering vine for years but it only bloomed once and the flower wilted by morning.  I quickly googled and found the name on line!

Night-blooming cereus is the common name referring to a large number of flowering Cereus cacti that bloom at night. The flowers are short lived, and some of these species bloom only once a year, for a single nightThe night-blooming cereus is also referred to as princess of the night, Honolulu queen and queen of the night.

This amazing flowering vine is native to Central America and Northern South America, the flower blooms rarely and only at night---mysteriously, the flower wilts before dawn.  The Chinese chengyu (four character idiom) 曇花一現 (tan hua yi xian) uses this flower (tan-hua; 曇花) to describe someone who has an impressive but very brief moment of glory, like a "flash in a pan", since the flower can take a year to bloom and only blooms over a single night. Therefore someone described as "曇花一現" is generally understood to be a person who shows off or unexpectedly gains some achievement and is thought to be an exception or only lucky. The flower also has a rich history in Japan, where it is known as the 月下美人 (Gekka Bijin) or "Beauty under the Moon".  Wiki source

Regardless of genus or species, night-blooming cereus flowers are almost always white, often large, and frequently fragrant.  The plants that bear such flowers can be tall, columnar, and sometimes extremely large and tree-like, but more frequently are thin-stemmed climbers. While some night-blooming cereus are grown indoors in homes or greenhouses in colder climates, most of these plants are too large or ungainly for this treatment, and are only found outdoors in tropical areas.

 Linking to Floral Friday Fotos


This is so tempting!
Soon, I promise!

Linking to Signs, Signs

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

V/ABC Wednesday

I have always been attracted to vines, especially flowering vines.  I like the naturalness of vines---their spontaneous search of sunlight, and instinctive clinging and twining for support.  A vine generally is referred to any plant with a growth habit of trailing, climbing, stems or runners.  The flowering vine above is called Violet Allamanda or Allamanda blanchetii, a beautiful but poisonous plant.

Considered a noxious weed, Cadena de Amor, is a climbing, perennial vine wildly crafted in the Philippines. A few years ago, a Metro Manila Chairman planted cadena de amor at the center islands of EDSA and C5, two major thoroughfares, to enhance the greening of the metro and in an effort to reduce carbon dioxide. Dubbed as vertical gardens, the pink flowers somehow cheered up the drab roads. But the invasive vines eventually choked up trellises and lamp posts, and the streets looked like a forest. 

I love the wildness of vines.  They add dimension to this self-portrait of a Davao artist, Kublai Millan.  And these hanging vines, probably strangler figs---overwhelm a balete/banyan tree in a forest park.

 Linking to ABC Wednesday

Monday, December 10, 2012

Rock Ferns/Mellow Yellow Monday

Ferns growing from cracks in rocks at Atwayan cove in Coron Island.

Knowing trees, I understand the meaning of patience. Knowing grass, I can appreciate persistence. ~ Hal Borland

Friday, December 7, 2012

Bletia lilacina

Bletia is a genus of about 30 species of orchids (family Orchidaceae), almost all of which are terrestrial. It is named after Spanish botanist and pharmacist Don Luis Blet. The genus is distributed from Florida south to Brazil.

These were taken at the garden in BHS-Central.
I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men. ~Lao  Tze

 Linking to Floral Friday Fotos

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Restaurants @ Intramuros/Signs

There are a number of good restaurants inside the historic walled city of Intramuros.  Being in the vicinity of the San Agustin Church and Manila Cathedral which are popular wedding venues, most restaurants here have gardens and courtyard to accommodate weddings and parties.

Ilustrado serves Filipino-Spanish favorites fused with continental, Asian and western dishes.  I usually bring foreign clients here when we're in the vicinity of Intramuros.

Patio Victoria serves international and Spanish cuisine.  The lush gardens, cobblestone walkways, antique gate and old world charm are a perfect venue for weddings, parties and other events. 

Linking to Signs, Signs