January 09, 2013

TDUG: To Infinity and Beyond

mango jumper / topshop skirt

Less hurt, more hope. That's my personal battlecry for the coming year. Then naturally, I just thought of adding, to 2013 and beyond when it hit me. Hi. I'm Mrs. Buzz Lightyear! Get it? Aha! Well, I never really planned on pulling a Halloween on a New Years but it kinda fits, what with my neon green skirt, which I love and have been wanting to wear for such a long time but I knew I had to save it for New Years!! The Mango jumper, aaahhhh! I have nothing but sweet words for it! It's like Jacob Black also known as human blanket turned into a jumper! So warm and fuzzy, it reaches down to the core. I may have gotten a bit over in the oversize department but for heavy-bottomed women like myself, I have to consider the length - if it will be long enough to cover my bum and this is the acceptable length, at least by my standards. It may look shabby and slouchy but I actually like it! I can live with this outfit for like, as long as it takes! It's comfortable, chic, practical and functional! I was wearing a high-cut boots from H&M but I got too excited for the fireworks I never got around to have a decent, let alone a complete, outfit post. Apologies! And can I stress about the neon skirt some more? I love love love it! I always make it a point to have anything shocking on me when welcoming the new year! Last year, I was all sparkly. This year though, bring on the neon! I don't know why but it makes me feel like something sparkly, shocking and superb, if not love in big bold neon colors, will come along with wearing them and it wouldn't hurt to go and give it a try, lest a chance.

Less hurt, more hope. Before I left my then company, I won the battlecry writing contest and that kind of made them remember me while 2010 lasted, which is also the same year I left the country for the Emirates. Do you want to know my winning piece? It's this: Make Things Happen in 2010. I made it happen for me back then. I never would've been anywhere near the happier place and comforter zone I am currently in now if I did not take that one huge step and leap of faith, so massive it included a luggage, a passport and a one-way ticket no Unknowndom. Some 3 years after, here I am. With an entirely different battlecry which I am very determined to acquire. So what do you say you declare it with me. Let's do this in 3...2...

Less hurt, more hope. To 2o13 and beyond!!! xxx J

TDUG: Black Gold, Black White

mango dress / zara wedges / h&m scarf / rayban aviators

When I first wore this dress, it was for my birthday. Onto the next, it's for Jesus' birthday! Now it's beginning to look a lot like I've been reserving this classic LBD for very special occasions, doesn't it? This time around though I paired it with my super-wedges from Zara and printed scarf from H&M! I swear, this pair has the super-powers to make my legs appear and look mighty fine than they really are in real life. Since it's all black and blocked from there, I decided on throwing a printed scarf with gold and brown accents to balance it all out, if not add a royal touch to the whole outfit. Nothing says royal and pontifical than black and gold, I should know. Ha!

And this is where a typical outfit post gets rather interesting... Well, at least this one is! Back when we were still kids, my mom would insist on making us, her four children, wear the same colors, if not the same dress, for Christmas. Save for my little brother, my sisters and I will most probably end up wearing the same design for a dress only in different sizes. It went on like that for years until she can no longer make us, much to her disappointment. Ha! Fast forward to some years after and large continents apart, we somehow ended up carrying on the tradition. This is purely coincidental. In our native language, lukso ng dugo!

 That's my Littlest Sister and I, Dubai-based Esmaldes;
then the Pinas-based Esmaldes, our Unico Hijo and Littler Sister 

TA-DA! Spot the indifference! We all ended up wearing black and white themed outfits! And if you look closely, even our shoes match in some way. Wedges for us in black, me and my littler sister. Red bits for my littlest sis and little brother who were in white. Not going to lie, I'm kind of amazed myself. HA!

Of course the connection goes beyond the superficiality of clothes and shoes, and that's what I am grateful for the most. For these three? You bet, a thousand times over. Also, aren't we a bunch of vain kiddos? Like I said, lukso ng dugo!

January 07, 2013


"When there is nothing left to burn, you have to set yourself on fire."
The Burj Khalifa | NYE in DXB

Raise your hand if you think Dubai needs another holiday and that is for New Year's Eve! *raises both hands, arms and legs* That is so mainstream of me, I know, I know. But you can't really blame me when you all know I am a dork for celebrations and that my favourite time of any occasion is the day before, the hopeful anticipation of it all. I can only thank my lucky stars enough that we managed to catch a glimpse of the amazing Dubai skyline whilst Its Royal Hotness, The Burj Khalifa, set itself on fire come midnight! I had Gary Lightbody's words ringing inside of my head the whole time. "I love this city tonight, I love this city always." Have always been my Dubai sentiments exactly, but especially on New Year's Eve.

Since we'll be coming all the way from Sharjah, straight from work which ended at 9P the latest, we drive-thru'd our pre-NYE meals from Hardees before heading off to Dubai and brave the NYE traffic which was bad, but that was expected since we do not have the luxury of time to get to Downtown earlier. We don't have much of a choice so we just made the most of what we can with the situation. We arrived in the area just in time to look for a vantage point as getting inside downtown is really not much of an option anymore. That's when we saw and followed a trail of parked cars along Sheikh Zayed Road, which made me feel like I'm on the set of The Walking Dead, except people were dressed to the nines and not in filthy zombie outfits. Brilliant! People parked their cars along the road and settled themselves with the view from afar, the panoramic view of the downtown buildings including Burj Khalifa - a road long stretch of viewing deck. Breathtaking. Please take note of how Mother Nature made her presence felt by maximizing the effect of it all with cloudy skies and a full moon to top it all off!

The Girl and The City | NYE in DXB 3.0

I cannot stress enough on how much this is worth all the trouble for me. Though I may be biased since one of the things I do best is chasing fireworks that it's even included in my resume. It can get pretty overwhelming when you witness it live, especially for the first time. I kid you not, Charisse, our roommate and an Emirates first-timer altogether, cried while watching it and she's not even a cry baby! It makes your heart swell with so much hope and love and happy hormones, you can't even begin to think why and how. Isn't that an awesome collection of feels to begin a new year with? It's my third time to witness it and it surely still feels like the first every time. And I'd choose to do it over and over again. Although after this particular night, I came to a realization. I usually go on declaring, "Eiffel Tower can wait" because who needs that when you already have Burj Khalifa... That's still me, just not this coming year though, not this time around for I'm claiming it this early - "Eiffel Tower, you're next!"

To chances and changes. To 2o13 and beyond! Happy new year, dear readers and friends! Here's to hoping we're all headed to our best and most blessed year yet! *pops champagne* CHEERS! xxx

January 06, 2013

TDUG: Happy Place, Happy Feet

h&m white sheer top / bershka green bandeau / h&m scarf / h&m trousers / keds sneakers

I am not much of a sneaker person. This is my first pair in so long and now I'm hooked! I can't seem to take it off of me, I've been wrapping up outfit posts around it so you can expect a lot of blog airtime between me and these new glittery babies of mine. I got me a pair of metallic Keds sneakers over the massive sale held at The World Trade Center over the first week of December. I wasn't so sure if I can get away with it, let alone wear it, what with my big and non-shapely legs, but when I saw this pair, all my doubts disappeared and I immediately asked for my size. I'm a regular 8 but I think the sizing for Keds is slightly different, you may need to have to go down half a size, if not a size, I got a 7.5 and it fits me just as well.

A chance to give them a spin presented itself the next weekend after I bought them when my friend Teen and I decided to visit The Walk at JBR once again! We call it our happy place but since we both have an impossible work schedule and currently living in two different Emirates, I'm from Sharjah, she's from Abu Dhabi and this place's in Dubai, we can't be here as often as we wish to. But when we do, we're sure to make the most out of it. The Walk is not called such for nothing and that's why we ended up calling this day The Walking Day (with reference to the hit TV series, The Walking Dead)! Finally, something that I am actually is, I am a walker. I love taking walkies and this pair of Keds' a perfect companion. It's easy and comfortable and a statement on its own without trying hard to get noticed. And what other way to put a pair of sneaks on the spotlight than to minimize the rest of the outfit. I kept it light and easy, even with the colors. Obsessed with this H&M sheer top, it makes you look so fresh and sophisticated at the same time! I love the cuts and how it clings to your body as if you've got the curves and the collarbones to flaunt, ha! I wanted to feel extremely comfortable and you can't get that with denims so this cotton trousers from H&M is the way to go! Threw in a matching combo of scarf and bandeau in green to break the eyes and also to keep me warm as it was starting to get a bit cold in Dubai that time. As for the sneaks, happy to announce I've had both happy feet and happy heart at the end of The Walking Day - comfiest and chicest companion for a walk ever!

Enough about me, how about you? Are you a sneaker girl? How do you wear them and how often? Not going to lie, I have yet to own my very first and legit pair of Converse sneaks.

January 04, 2013

Christmas 2012

{ Christmas Day 2012 }

This year marked my 3rd Christmas away from home. You probably think I'm used to it by now but no, I'm not. I guess you never get used to the whole thing, you just make room for it, lock it in there for the day and proceed with extreme caution. I managed to stay away from any Christmas carol that may trigger any unnecessary emotions until December 24th and I'm happy to announce that it actually worked for me!

I may be away from home but at least not totally away from family. I have been spending the last three with my littlest sister and Emirates folks, so the four of us made the most of what we can from the holiday. We had our annual Christmas lunch at Black Canyon Thai Restaurant in Dubai Festival City, headed to the church to attend the afternoon mass right after and then capped the day off by drinking our Christmas cuppa Joe's at The Walk in JBR. Very far from my traditional Christmas Day since birth but that's how I've been spending my last 3 Christmases here in the Emirates so it's familiar, I'll take it.

Because when you think about it, that's all you need within your reach - your faith, your family and yourself and you're off to have a merry little Christmas. I hope you had yours with the people you love the most. xxx
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