A Spaghetti Story

When we were just dating, Christian shared with me his favorite spaghetti recipe. Up until then, the only pasta that I know how to cook is my roommate’s spicy tuna carbonara. Really simple because you only need to mix the canned tuna and the cream, let it simmer, then mix with your cooked spaghetti, or any other type of pasta that you want.

His recipe was a bit complicated for me then, a kitchen novice. It involved mincing garlic and onions, slicing hotdogs (Yes! We have hotdogs in our spaghetti because we’re born and raised in the Philippines! Haha!), pre-cooking the grounded beef, and perfectly mixing together his secret ingredients to make his preferred sauce. He’s not a fan of sweet spaghetti, like most Pinoys. He wants it tomato-ey and a bit spicy, thus, his “secret sauce”. Even the pasta, he wanted a very specific way of prepping.

All well and good if he actually prepped and cooked it from time to time, but no. He instructs, I execute.

Through the years, I’ve come to perfect his spaghetti recipe. I remember including in my silent wedding vow that I will cook his favorite spaghetti on his birthdays. Silent because we didn’t really say our vows out loud in front of everyone. But I’m getting out of topic.

Anyway, today is not his birthday but he’s been very stressed by work lately. In my effort to take a bit of his stress away, I went ahead and prepped his favorite meal. And I’m happy that it put a smile on his face.

I’ve read that to make a marriage work and to keep the love alive, you don’t need to do monumental gestures every single time. It’s the little things that matter that you consistently do.

You just need to know what makes your partner smile and you try your best to be a constant source of that smile.

Star Wars Run 2018

May the 4th be with you! In honor of Star Wars’ Day, let me talk about my Star Wars Run from 2 years ago.

Our main reason for going to Singapore that year is the Bruno Mars 24K Magic World Tour. Why fly 2500 km just to watch Bruno Mars perform, you ask? Simple: It’s just so hard and frustrating scoring tickets here in the Philippines. Thank you, inconsiderate scalpers!

Anyway, I was looking for other things to do and try to maximize our stay in SG when I chanced upon the Star Wars Run in Facebook. The race was actually on May 5th, not May 4th, but it’s ok. It has always been one of my goals to join a race outside of the PH. Second, it’s Star Wars. Come on!

I asked Cris if he’s willing to join me despite the steep registration fee. He agreed and actually extended the invite to our Dark Side – SG Chapter friends who’ll be coming with us to the concert. To my surprise, they all decided to join.

This was one of the most unique and fun run that I’ve even been to. Upon registration, it lets you choose between the Light Side and the Dark Side. This determined your race shirt, finishing medal, other freebies, and your actual path. Yes, the two sides ran through different paths and converged at the finish line.

We chose to participate in the 5.4KM non-competitive run because we were just in it for the fun. Personally, I also like how it corresponds to the Star Wars date which made the finishing medal all the more special. I was so happy that my 5.4KM finishing medal is a Stormtrooper, but Cris wasn’t so fond of his. He’s not a big fan of Chewie. Lucky for him, his route is the more enjoyable one because it’s around the Marina Bay area. They even went through the Hellix Bridge which looks spectacular at night! Meanwhile, our route was true to form — it was so dark! We went through trails and tunnels that I’m not totally familiar with. It’s a good thing I did not get lost even if I had to stop in the middle of the race for a quick bio break.

I can no longer find my stats for this race so I’m just posting here my favorite pics. This is a very good reminder for me to post regularly so details are not lost in time. Haha!

Overall, it was very enjoyable and I was impressed at how organized the race was. I was even allowed to exchange my race pack because the shirt size that I chose is quite small. This surprised me because if it was here in the PH, I’ll have no choice but to run wearing a crop top baby tee.

Post race, we went to a hawker in Geylang for a much needed dimsum dinner. I can’t even remember the name of the hawker place but it looked like a popular go-to because just mere minutes after we have reserved a table, there was already a long line of people waiting to be seated. We were lucky we got there a bit early.

Despite the post-race fatigue because of lack of sleep and the the Singapore heat, we went home with full tummies and happy faces — fully recharged for the Bruno Mars concert the day after.

📸: Brylle Baluyot

Happy Barkday, Mr. F!

Dear Mr. Frodo, 

I still remember when I first saw you. You and your sister were in a playpen but you, my boy, caught my eye. You know why? Before we even approach you, you were already standing on your two hind legs and resting your two little paws against the playpen, barking at me incessantly, looking so happy. It’s as if you were saying, “Pick me, hooman! Pick me!”. 

And I was smitten. 

You were so curious on our drive home, looking out of the car window and can’t seem to get enough of what you’re seeing. Do you still remember what I told you then? 

“Look at the world, Mr. Frodo. Make it yours!”. 

You are a promise silently made and a promise kept.

When your Poppa and I just started dating, I jokingly told him that he should get me a pug if ever we reach our 3rd anniversary. This stemming from the fact that some people thought we wouldn’t last that long. He just shook his head at me, smiling without saying a word. I took it as silently telling me, “You wish!”. 

It didn’t help that after three years, he gifted me with a pug paper craft proudly saying he’s keeping his promise. I thought it was really funny, until he told me that he’s getting me you, for real. I still could not believe it until we were going rounds the pet shops already, looking for the perfect you. 

The morning after, you gave me a fright. You were so sick that I thought I’d lose you. Without taking a shower I took you to the vet and waited nervously for your checkup. The vet told us that you might not live for long and I almost cried. I talked to your previous owner and she assured me that you will live. That she will take you in for two weeks and give you back to me in perfect health. 

And she did.

It was a promise made and a promise kept. 

At that time, I wouldn’t have thought that you will be this mischievous little one who would go and ruin my stuff, sneeze straight on my face as if it’s the most delightful thing in the world, and make me fall and roll around the streets of Tomas Morato while trying to save you from being a roadkill. 

At that time, I wouldn’t have thought that I could trade sleep just so I can keep an eye on you when you’re sick. That I could trade night outs and partying just so we can spend more time together. That I could trade splurging on a meal just so I can buy your favorite snacks and toys. I wouldn’t have thought that I have this much capacity to love a squished faced, sneezy non-human. 

Mr. Frodo, you are one of our earlier relationship milestones and you’ve been with us through every other milestone thereafter. The good and the bad, the happy and not so happy. 

And we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Happy 6th Barkday, Mr. F. We love you and you will always be our baby boy.

That’s a promise that we will always keep.