2012 Gratitude/Accomplishment List: Working with Marj Sia

With Marj Sia, Rubie Chua, and Xy Pintoy

With Marj Sia, Rubie Chua, and Xy Pintoy
(Pardon my sleepy looking smile in the bottom photo. :P)

This 2012, I had the pleasure of working with Marj Sia in organizing an event.

Magniflex Bloggers Night at Home Studio Philippines: http://on.fb.me/WdDNJH

Marj’s Birthday SPArty at Entice the Salon:http://on.fb.me/WdBpmq

I’ve always wanted to attend a blogger event. I mean, being able to mingle with the bloggers I admire would be really awesome. But taking part in organizing a blogger event was more than I expected. Of course, as an organizer, you’re not really participating in the blogger event itself, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to mingle with the guests. In fact, you need to be able to mingle with the guests to make them feel welcome. You don’t want the guests to be bored or to be all alone. And that’s normal in any kind of event right? Even if it’s just a sleepover at your house.

It was a good experience to see how much preparation is done for a blogger event. The one I helped with was a pretty small event (less than 20 attendees?) but it still took a lot of preparation. You had to take care of the invite, the venue, the program, the food, the giveaways (loot bags!), the host, and the participants. I’m sure that if you had to do all that by yourself, that would take a lot of work and a majority of your time. I can’t even imagine how difficult it is to organize a bigger event, like company product launches or meet-and-greets.

One of the best things about this experience? Meeting two new friends (who are also fellow bloggers): Rubie and Xy. 🙂

I’m really happy that I got to do this because I’ve always enjoyed planning events (even if it’s just my birthday celebration). Sometimes, I even wonder if I’d be happy working as an event organizer. 😛

Anyway, it’s time for me to sleep. Until tomorrow (or later because as I’m writing this, it’s a minute to midnight. :P). (^^)/~~

♥ Niece

Advertisements

2012 Gratitude/Accomplishment List: ITIL V3 Foundations Certified!

ITIL V3 Foundations Certified

ITIL V3 Foundations Certified

Another thing I can be proud of this year is passing the ITIL V3 Foundations certification exam. *happy dance*

I’m glad that I was able to take the training and exam this year. With how hectic work was the past months, I was despairing that I wouldn’t be able to take another training before the year ended. Thankfully, I was able to take the ITIL training during the first (or was it second?) week of December and that I was able to pass the certification exam. 😀

Since I took up Java in college, I’ve always wanted to be something-certified. Didn’t really matter what at the time (though Java was highest on my preference list then), I just wanted to be certified at something. For me, a certification meant that you grasped the subject matter well, based on a universally accepted criteria. As compared to school exams where the level of difficulty of an exam may not be the same for all schools.

And now, I am ITIL V3 Foundations Certified. Which means I’ve achieved one of my goals in life. *(^^)* Hopefully, this won’t be the last certification I’ll gain in my career. I really wish that before the next year ends, I’ll be able to say that I’ve acquired another one. 🙂

Anyway, that’s it for today. Until next time dear readers. (^^)/~~

♥ Niece

2012 Gratitude/Accomplishment List: #50BookPledge 2012 Completed!

“I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever.”  (Psalms 86:12 NRSV)

“I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever.” (Psalms 86:12 NRSV)

Since the year 2012 is ending in a few more days, I thought I’d make a few blog entries about the things I’m thankful for and the things I’m proud of for the year 2012. I think that counting the blessings you received during the year and the accomplishments you worked hard for is a good way to end the year; it helps us appreciate everything that happened to us during the year. Wouldn’t you agree? 🙂

I also think that it’s a good way to start the upcoming year. If we come into the new year with positive attitudes and open hearts, I know that the new year will turn out to be a great one for us. 🙂

50 Book Pledge 2012 Completed!

50 Book Pledge 2012 Completed!

To start off, I’m very proud to announce that I was able to complete my #50bookpledge for 2012! *round of applause*

Honestly, I was in danger of not being able to finish. The first reason was that I started the pledge late. I started around the 3rd week of January which meant I was already behind by 2 weeks. Still, I’m usually a pretty quick reader so I figured it wouldn’t be that difficult for me to catch up. I was able to catch up (and actually be ahead by 4 books) but then work suddenly piled up and I stopped reading books for 3 whole months. That’s 12 weeks to catch up on. I did read a bit of manga during that time but I didn’t include manga as part of the pledge.

When I was finally able to start reading books again, I resigned myself to the fact that I might not be able to finish the 50 books. I still wanted to continue the pledge, so I shortened my list to 25 books. I had no idea what came over me during that time though because in around 2 weeks, I was able to finish 12 books. That’s roughly a book a day. Which was awesome because it meant that instead of being behind by 8 books, I was able to be ahead by 8 books again in just 2 months time.

Unfortunately, work issues slowed my reading pace again. Thankfully, by the time December rolled around, I only had one more book to finish. It took me three weeks though to be able to finish the whole book. I think I read the last book once or twice per week and only a few chapters at a time so it was quite a slow read (at least for me).

Still, I was able to finish my #50bookpledge and that is really something to both be grateful for and to be proud of. I really love reading and it’s sad that I haven’t been reading as much the past few years. This exercise refuelled not only my passion for reading but also my love for writing. I’m so glad I decided to do this. 🙂

Anyway, that’s all for today. I’mma be going now as I still have work tomorrow morning.

Later dear readers! (^^)/~~

♥ Niece

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! - From the Guardians

Merry Christmas!
(Image taken from http://panda423.tumblr.com)

I’d like to take this time to wish you all a merry, merry Christmas (or if you don’t celebrate Christmas, a happy, happy holiday). I hope you all have a Christmas season filled with love, peace, and happiness. 🙂

Let’s not forget the reason why we’re celebrating this Christmas season. It’s not the gifts, the food, or the parties. It’s not just about being with loved ones. Christmas is when we celebrate the birth of Jesus. Let’s all remember to thank God for giving us his son to save us from our sins, and also thank God for everything he’s given us so far. 🙂

Once again, MERRY CHRISTMAS everyone. 🙂

♥ Niece

The Magic is About to End: Goodbye Merlin

In Comes the End

In Comes the End
(Image taken from http://cranberryaww.tumblr.com)

“From the beginning this was always going to be a five year journey that we embarked on and I think the show has run its natural course. The show has grown and grown each year and now we’ve arrived at its strongest point and we’ve achieved what we set out to do… I know this is the end, and I know this is goodbye, but thank you for being there on the journey with us because it has been a lot of fun!” — Colin Morgan (Merlin)

It was just announced yesterday that Merlin, one of my favorite TV series, is officially ending after Season 5. There’s five episodes left for this season with a special two part season and series finale to be aired sometime near Christmas. I’ve been with this fandom from the start and I can’t believe five years have already gone by. It feels like less. According to the writers and the cast, the series was really only slated for five seasons. Either way, I’m not ready to say goodbye.

On a not-totally-random side note, it was also announced yesterday that the premiere of the third season of Sherlock will be pushed to a later 2013 date. As if it wasn’t already a long enough wait for the Sherlock fandom. This along with the Merlin news has the different Tumblr fandoms in a hubbub.

Colin Morgan at Comic Con

Boom!

“The Merlin years have provided me with fond memories, great experiences and beloved friends and all the while we were supported by a devoted fan base who made the show a unique, surreal and special experience. My words won’t do justice to the honour of being King Arthur so I shall just say that it has been an exceptional one and that knowing the show has been a part of so many people’s lives, has been humbling.” — Bradley James (Arthur)

I’m definitely going to miss Merlin. I just love how all of the characters have progressed. If you’ve been watching every episode since the start of the show until now, I’m sure you’ve seen the development of each character; how Arthur came to be known as a great king, how Morgana became evil, and how Merlin developed, not just as a magician, but also as the invisible support to Arthur’s greatness. We all know the Arthurian legends (many though they are), but of course, since they’re legends, we don’t really know how everyone became who they are. I definitely think that the BBC One adaptation did a really good job with their interpretation of the Arthurian legend.

Bradley James and Colin Morgan.

Two-thumbs up courtesy of Bradley.

“I have always said the success of the show has stemmed from our audience being able to relate to the characters on different levels – being based on the universally loved Arthurian legend is only a tiny part of its success – it’s a story about acceptance and growing up. The breathtaking finale of this series leaves you with no doubt that characters have been on their journeys and had their stories told – it’s completely the right time to draw our telling of the story to a close.” — Katie McGrath (Morgana)

I’d really love for Merlin to continue on but if they planned for the story to only be this long, then I guess I can’t complain. I just hope that they’ll be able to cram everything that needs to be crammed in the next five episodes. After all, the big reveal hasn’t happened yet and I hope that the big reveal actually happens or doesn’t happen at the very last second.. Also, I’m wondering how they’re going to end the series. We know that Arthur dies at the hands of Mordred in the Arthurian legends. Do they plan on killing Arthur? Even though I don’t want that to happen, at least I’m prepared for when it happens (if it does happen).

I really hope the story isn’t forced or rushed because they’re ending the series. I also hope that it doesn’t end in a really frustrating cliffhanger (of Reichenbach proportions). If they’re forced to rush the story, then they’d probably be better off doing a shortened season just to tie up all loose ends, kind of like what they did / they’re doing with Gossip Girl.

Arthur and Merlin

Arthur and Merlin

“It has been a very special and memorable five years makingMerlin. I feel extremely proud to have been part of such a brilliant show and such a great team. I think we’ve told the story we set out to tell, which ends with the fantastic two part finale by the way!  I believe the key to any successful show is making sure you leave people wanting more!” — Angel Coulby (Gwen)

The Merlin cast gave their statements regarding the series’ end (the quotes you’ve seen peppered around this post). If I didn’t believe the news about the ending of the show before that, I can’t deny it now. After all, the cast themselves are saying that the series will end. It’s sad but at least Merlin ending is on a good note. It’s not like they’ve reached a point where people are saying “END ALREADY!” In fact, it’s the opposite. And if I were part of the production, I’d really be happy for that. I’d rather end with fans still loving the fandom than pushing the series too far and having the fans hate the fandom.

Goodbye Merlin

Goodbye Merlin

As much as I don’t want to part with Merlin yet, I’m happy that I got into the fandom. It’s provided me with fond memories and I know that Merlin will always be in my heart. Just like how Harry Potter is always in my heart even though the book (and the movies) have ended. The lessons Merlin and Arthur have taught through the telling of their story will stay with me. I don’t want the series the end but I’m definitely looking forward to the last five episodes. I just know they’ll be awesome.

Anyway, time for me to go. Until next time dear readers. (^^)/~~

♥ Niece

Cosplay: Morgana Pendragon (BBC One’s Merlin)

Just a few more days and it’s Halloween. It’s always been one of my favorite occassions because I love seeing everyone dressed in costumes. Since I enjoyed making last year’s Halloween blog entry (see Bellatrix Lestrange), I decided to write another one this year. For this year, I picked Morgana Pendragon from BBC One’s Merlin from my list of possible ideas. The premiere of season 5 of the show was really perfectly timed because it reminded me of how much I’ve been wanting to try and cosplay Morgana.

Morgana Pendragon

Morgana Pendragon

I never thought I would like Morgana. The story of Arthur and Merlin has been around for ages and it’s pretty much basic knowledge that Morgana is Arthur’s enemy. Of course, people usually side with the good guys at the start. I think it’s instinctive for us to root for the good guys and dislike the bad ones. The BBC adaptation of Merlin cast Morgana as good during the first few seasons though. This was a great move on their part because it shows how Morgana became The Morgana of the legends. After all, I don’t think bad guys are born that way. They turn out that way because of something they experienced.

Since the BBC adaptation of Merlin showed both Morgana’s good and evil sides, you can actually go have two looks for Morgana.

“Good” Morgana’s look is basically a princess look. Morgana’s makeup is usually light and natural looking with a bit of emphasis on the eyes and the lips. Her curly hair is usually kept down but she sometimes has them in a low side pony tail or in a bun. As for her clothes, flowing gowns with bright colours are perfect. She also sometimes wears velvet hooded cloaks.

"Good" Morgana

“Good” Morgana

"Good" Morgana

“Good” Morgana

"Good" Morgana

“Good” Morgana

"Good" Morgana

“Good” Morgana

I think “evil” Morgana’s look is very much like Bellatrix Lestrange’s look. The difference main difference I can see is with the makeup. While Bellatrix’s makeup is quite dark and heavy, Morgana’s is pale. The color comes from her eyes which are complemented by her eye makeup. Her hair and clothes though look very much alike: messy, unkempt hair, and a dark (preferably black) dress with lace details.

"Evil" Morgana

“Evil” Morgana

"Evil" Morgana

“Evil” Morgana

"Evil" Morgana

“Evil” Morgana

"Evil" Morgana

“Evil” Morgana

There are two bonus looks with Morgana. One is the in-between Morgana. There’s a part of the series where Morgana is pretending to be on Uther’s side but is actually against him. She’s not really “evil” yet but she’s not really good either. She’s somewhere in between by this time. The only difference from her “good” look is that her makeup is usually near pale with defined lips. Her eyes also look more deep-set as compared to her “good” look. Her wardrobe, of course, are still made up of gowns as she’s still living in the castle.

In-between Morgana

In-between Morgana

In-between Morgana

In-between Morgana

For the second bonus look, you can go for “warrior” Morgana. Morgana’s hair is braided to keep it from her face (and of course, so that it’s easier to fight) and her makeup is light with a bit of emphasis on the lips. For her clothes, go for a loose top or something like chain mail (the texture, not the cloth itself; real chain mail would be heavy), a wide belt, a pair of nicely fitting comfortable pants (not denim obviously), and a pair of boots. You can also go for a riding cloak.

"Warrior" Morgana

“Warrior” Morgana

"Warrior" Morgana

“Warrior” Morgana

One last thing, don’t forget to accessorize. Pick accessories fit for the character. Classy jewelry for “good” and in-between Morgana, something like arm guards and a sword for “warrior” Morgana, and you can actually skip the accessories for “evil” Morgana.

And there you have it. Four looks for one character, how cool is that? 🙂 If you’re on a tight schedule and a tight budget, I think “warrior” Morgana would be the best look to emulate since it seems pretty easy to do. If you have a nice lace dress though, you could go as “evil” Morgana.

For more inspiration on her look, you can visit the Morgana’s Wardrobe section on the Merlin Wikia.

Anyway, time for me to go. Until next time dear readers. Give me a shout out in the comments on who you’re planning to go as on Halloween. Maybe others can get their Halloween costume ideas from you. 🙂

♥ Niece

Republic Act No. 10175: The Cybercrime Prevention Act of the Philippines

Junk the Cybercrime Prevention Law

Junk the Cybercrime Prevention Law

In less than 40 minutes (as of writing this), R.A. 10175, or The Cybercrime Prevention Act will take effect here in the Philippines. It is a law which, according to Forbes, “makes SOPA look reasonable”.

Normally, I don’t like to take a more active part in anything related to politics. I’m sure it’s not a very good thing but I’ve always been hesitant in sharing my opinions regarding controversial issues. For this one however, I knew I had to stand up and do my part.

The bill was penned with seemingly good intentions. There are a lot of crimes that can happen online. But that doesn’t mean that you can curtail people’s freedom of speech or their right to privacy just to prevent those crimes from happening. These are basic rights of every human and it should be obvious that you can’t pass a law which violates these rights. Laws are passed to protect people’s rights, not the other way around.

Cybercrime Prevention Law: No Fun in the Philippines

Cybercrime Prevention Law: No Fun in the Philippines

Filipino netizens are calling this the e-Martial law or the Cyber Martial Law, and with good reason. If someone posts a disparaging comment about you on the internet, you can sue them for libel and everyone else who liked, reblogged and/or shared the comment. The poster also gets 12 years in prison. Not only that, if you are found “guilty” of committing libel online, you’ll be serving two sentences: one for the libel provision in the constitution and the other for the one in the Cybercrime Prevention Act. For real.

I don’t get how the Philippine government can be so arrogant to think that this will stick. People all around the world protested against SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, and other such bills in other countries. They weren’t passed for a reason. People don’t want this passed for a reason. My advise to those who accepted this? Get your bruised egos in check and do your job. There are so many other issues that needs resolving in the country.

Stop Cyber Martial Law: We are a democracy, not a dictatorship.

Stop Cyber Martial Law: We are a democracy, not a dictatorship.

We wouldn’t need to worry about cybercrimes if people knew how to use the internet properly. I suggest that they hold web ethics workshops instead of enacting this law. The less ignorant people are and the more ethically-inclined the users are, there would be no need for this. We really just need to share with everyone the consequences and implications of cybercrimes.

Anyway, it is now 12:10 AM, October 3, 2012. This act should now be technically in effect which means that the internet is now dead.

If you’re a Filipino and you don’t want to kill the internet, or if you’re not a Filipino but want to support the Filipinos in this fight, then please speak up and do something. We all need to contribute, even in the smallest of ways such as changing your profile picture to a blank black photo.

Before I go though, I leave you with this list of readings to familiarize yourself with this issue. After all, ignorance is not always bliss.

  1. Republic Act No. 10175 – Philippine Government, Official Gazette.
  2. PIFA.ph – Philippine Internet Freedom Alliance
  3. Digital Martial Law: 10 Scary Things About the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 – GMA News Online
  4. Junk the Cybercrime Prevention Law – Change.org (Online Petition)

Please please please, if you can, sign the petition. It will mean so much, not only to me, but to all the Filipinos who want this bill junked.

Until next time dear readers. 🙂

♥ Niece