Travel & Culture

The EDSA People Power Revolution and What It Means Now for Filipinos 

EDSA People Power Revolution

It’s been more than thirty years since the EDSA People Power Revolution, but it is still being celebrated as one of the most significant events that molded our country into what it is today. Not only was it instrumental in freeing the Philippines from a dictatorship, but it also showed the rest of the world what us Filipinos could achieve if we joined forces and united in the name of freedom, change, and peace. 

The EDSA People Power Revolution

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The anniversary of this momentous event in Philippine history is still being celebrated every February 25, but sometimes, it seems like us Filipinos still need to be reminded of the significance of the EDSA People Power Revolution and what it means in our history as a people. We can start reliving the impact of this historical event by mulling upon the many lessons it taught us and passing it forward to our children.

Lessons EDSA Has Taught Us

1. A peaceful revolution is possible.

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During the Martial Law years, feelings of fear and doubt ran rampant among the citizens, and many began to crave change in the country. But when the time came that they had the opportunity to enact change, the people did not resort to violence, as what happens normally in situations like that in other countries. Instead, they gathered peacefully, sang songs, and camped out in families, while iconic musicians like the APO Hiking Society came up on a stage and sang patriotic songs like “Magkaisa” and “Bayan Ko.” Meanwhile, civilians and members of the religious orders such as nuns and the like approached soldiers and handed them flowers and food. In that one instance, kindness won over weapons.

2. There is power in unity.

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There’s that age-old story about a dying father who called his five sons together to his deathbed. Showing them a single twig, he easily broke it apart with his trembling fingers. Then he had them bring forward an actual broom, which had many twigs in it, and asked his sons to break the broom, or the collective group of twigs, into two. Of course, none of the brothers could do it, no matter how each tried. It was then that the father made a point of stressing to his young sons the importance of staying together, as it was then that they would be strongest. In short, nobody could break them when they were united. This short story and what happened in the EDSA People Power Revolution is proof of what we are capable of achieving if we just united our forces. During that fateful time, millions of Filipinos who were looking for change banded together, supported each other, and even forced a dictator out of his seat of power.

3. There are some things worth fighting for.

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Filipinos are friendly and peace-loving people. But as our history books tell us, a lot of our ancestors were warriors, and when push came to shove, they were brave and courageous enough to fight for their fellow countrymen and their motherland. Their bravery was passed down to us when we chose to stand up against the abuses of a dictatorial government and to fight for the future of our children and for freedom—freedom to express what we want and to live as we want. 

But the fight doesn’t stop at EDSA. While we’ve managed to topple down a dictatorship, our problems as a country haven’t stopped at all. Corruption is still rampant in all levels of society, especially the government, and poverty has crippled a large part of our population. It seems that we have quickly forgotten the lessons that the EDSA People Power Revolution has taught us. Maybe, now more than ever, all of us need reminding of what it means to fight for our ideals, to strive for peace, and to exist in harmony with each other.

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Home Designs Modern Home Designs

Ways to Make Your Home Look More Elegant on a Budget

If we had it our way, we’d make stylish renovations to our home whenever we feel like it, like annually painting the walls of our homes in the Pantone color of the year. But not all of us have the time, energy, or inclination to do so, not to mention the funds. While people like millionaires or Hollywood celebrities can afford to hire high-profile renovators and interior designers to switch up their interiors, for the rest of us who are more practical, we’ll have to rely on our own resources and be limited to a realistic budget. To help you out in such projects, we’ve compiled a list of ways on how to make your home look more elegant on a budget.

How You Can Make Your Home Look More Elegant on a Budget

1. Create an illusion of height.

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You don’t have to go to the extent of knocking down your ceilings and doing some major renovations to make your home look more airy and spacious. Sometimes, all that’s needed is a raised ceiling—that is, the illusion of it. You can achieve this look by putting up floor-to-ceiling curtains, which helps to add height to any room.

2. Freshen up with a coat or two of paint.

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Who says that home renovation jobs have to be complex and expensive? Sometimes all that’s necessary is a fresh coat of paint. But not just any kind of paint job will do as it’s crucial that you pick out the right set of colors. For an elegant-looking space, you have two options: soft and subtle or bold and dramatic. A fresh coat of paint in the right colors is a low-cost way of enhancing the look of your home. 

3. Change the lighting.

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Another inexpensive way to revamp your home is to simply change the light fixtures in your home. You can visit thrift shops or antique stores to look for great deals or wait for the sale season to start in your favorite hardware and furniture store. Make sure you choose light bulbs that are environment-friendly though; not only will you be making your home more elegant but you’ll also be a friend to the planet too.

4. While you’re at it, you can change the furniture too.

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Simple things like accent chairs can also impact the look of a room or section of your house by a great deal. They’re also an affordable but completely effective way of making the look of a room more cohesive and put-together. 

5. Don’t forget the hardware.

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Don’t be so caught up in the “larger” and more obvious projects that you neglect the hardware as it is one of the most inexpensive yet effective ways you can revamp your home. Simply switching up your handles, door knobs, light switches, and the like can already do so much toward increasing the elegant appeal of your home.

You can see from the above tips that it doesn’t really take much to make your home look more elegant. All it needs is a little effort and resourcefulness on your part. 

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Travel & Culture

Valentine’s Day Destinations: Fall Deeper in Love with Your Lover and the Philippines

Planning your Valentine’s Day getaway? Look no farther than the Philippines. Composed of 7,641 islands, the Philippines will never disappoint you when it comes to Valentine’s Day ideas. File those vacation leaves now before it’s too late!

Romantic Valentine’s Day Destinations Around the Philippines

Batanes

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A Valentine’s date in Batanes will truly be unforgettable. Batanes is the Philippines’ own version of New Zealand. Everywhere you look, you’re surrounded by rolling green hills, cliffs, a few grazing cows or carabaos, and the ocean far beyond. In some areas near the coastlines are villages filled with age-old stone houses covered with thatch roofs. The culture of the natives here is still quite intact. You and your partner will have fun befriending the warm, friendly Ivatans and experience their calmness and resilience firsthand, as well as their unique traditions. 

Baguio

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Baguio will always make lists of romantic getaways, and this one is no exception. Nature lovers just dig the parks, campsites, forests, farms, gardens, lakes, and waterfalls here, and the climate of this mountain range city is popular among lovers and newlyweds due to its cuddle weather. Artsy couples will also love the museums, collections, coffee shops, murals, and architectural wonders here. The Igorot people of Baguio will make you fall in love with the place even more and the whole Valentine’s vacay will make you fall in love with your partner all over again.

Intramuros

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If you both find colonial architecture romantic, Intramuros is the place to go. Experience old world charm on cobblestone roads and horse-drawn carriage rides and in ruins and museums. A hint of nostalgia lingers within the city’s limestone and coral walls. Even McDonald’s and 7 Eleven branches here are amusingly built with that Spanish vibe. Dining in restaurants here like the famous Ilustrado Restaurant will make you feel like a serenade, slow dance, romantic poem, and love letter are in order. If you live farther north, Vigan will make for a good alternative.

Iloilo City

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You might want to tour around the city of love just in time for Valentine’s Day. Staying true to its moniker, Iloilo boasts modern establishments such as restaurants, bars, and hotels and well-preserved centuries-old buildings, churches, and houses at the same time—perfect for couples who love exploring sights, food, nature, architecture, history, and culture. Head down to the Iloilo River Esplanade for a romantic riverfront dining experience or to Bucari Pine Forest for a camping and nature adventure. Make sure you got your vacation leaves ready to spend a day discovering the destinations this beautiful city has to offer and perhaps end the weekend in Boracay as a bonus!

Panglao Island, Bohol

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Start and end Valentine’s day right with the perfect views of the sunrise and sunset. Home to many underrated beachfront destinations, Panglao is Boracay’s peaceful counterpart. Think Boracay sans the crowds, noise, and long line of establishments. Couples looking for privacy and paradise are naturally drawn to the island’s fine white sand, warm water, and trees. It’s a destination of repose and wonderful sights.

Bantayan Island, Cebu

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The metropolitan center of the Visayas is a narrow chili-shaped island smack in the middle of the region, so it’s blessed with beautiful shorelines and doesn’t suffer from devastating typhoons that much (storms pass by quickly because of the island’s shape and geographical location). Cebu is actually composed of 167 islands in total, and the most popular romantic destination for singles and couples alike is Bantayan Island. Featured in movies and international articles, Bantayan is Cebu’s own Boracay. Just like Panglao, it’s free of crowds, but Bantayan is just a lot cheaper. For a much more affordable price, your Valentine’s experience in Bantayan will feel relatively luxurious. And if beaches sound so overrated to you, there’s an eco park, mangrove garden, lagoon, butterfly garden, and a cave here. History buffs will love the ruins, the 1580s church, and the 1970s fort. 

Eden Nature Park, Davao City

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Eden Nature Park is indeed Eden. Located in the district of Toril in Davao City, Eden Nature Park sits at the foot of Mount Talomo. You’ll have a chance to explore a wildlife sanctuary of 80 hectares full of exotic birds, plants, flowers, and insects. This nature park is actually 95% man-made, but it has handsome scenery, including 100,000 tall forest trees and 100,000 pine trees. If your feet grow tired, you can always hop on their 45-minute shuttle tour to save time. The fresh natural scents make this the mother of all camping sites in Mindanao. 

Lake Sebu, Cotabato

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Ride a boat across the iconic haven surrounded with lotus plants that is Lake Sebu! As a travel destination, the municipality of Lake Sebu seems to have it all: scenic lakes, majestic waterfalls, lush forests, pristine streams, and the rich and unique T’boli and Ubo culture. Besides enjoying the natural beauty of the place, your Valentine’s day can also be filled with a number of exciting adventures like water biking, water tubing, zip line riding across seven waterfalls! The natives are also very engaging. They’ll show you their weavers,  dancers, and singers. You’ll be introduced to an entirely different society where natives capitalize on the beauty of their ancient culture.

Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte

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Are you a daredevil duo? Spend Valentine’s Day at Dapitan for the wild rides in Gloria’s Fantasyland. Every night, the theme park showcases a grand parade and a festival of lights! If you still haven’t had enough, head over to Dakak Resort for an action-packed date. There are loads of things to do there, such as bungee jumping, trekking, zip lining, rock and wall climbing, horseback riding, airsoft, banana boat riding, jet skiing, water skiing, kayaking, sailing, scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, and speedboat riding. Wind down in the historical spots of the locality to end the getaway. Our national hero is well remembered in Dapitan due to his exile here. Visit his shrine, where many of the trees you see were literally planted by him. He also built five nipa huts in the area!

 

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Home Designs Modern Home Designs

Chinese New Year Decor Ideas for Your Home

A few days after the Christmas and New Year celebrations, people start taking down their Yuletide decorations and begin preparing for another annual event: Chinese New Year. This is a Chinese spring festival that commemorates the beginning of another year in the lunar calendar, the traditional calendar system that the Chinese also go by. The festival isn’t set on a specific date each year, but it is usually celebrated at around January or February because the lunar calendar restarts around that time. The festival isn’t just limited to Chinese people or those living in China. They are also celebrated by Chinese-speaking communities and even non-Chinese people around the world. 

Chinese New Year falls on a different date each year; this year, it’s on January 25, which falls on a Saturday. Most decorations for this occasion involve the color red as well as images and tokens that are considered lucky in Chinese culture. This year, because this is the year of the rat, expect a lot of rat-shaped decorations and ornaments. 

When decorating your home for the Chinese New Year, you can get a few ideas from the suggestions below:

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  • Chinese Red Lanterns 

These kinds of lanterns are commonly seen during important festivals in Chinese culture. During Chinese New Year, you can often see these lanterns hung on doors of houses and buildings and even on branches of trees. They are believed to ward off bad luck to a household or an institution.

  • Door Couplets 
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New Year couplets are cloth banners on which are typically inscribed people’s best wishes for the new year. These wishes or positive statements are often posted in pairs, as it is generally believed in China that pairs or even numbers bring good luck and auspiciousness.

  • Paper Cuttings
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Paper cutting is the practice of cutting out all kinds of designs from paper and pasting them onto any transparent or contrasting surface, such as a window pane. In China, especially in the northern and central parts, it is customary for people to paste red paper cuttings on the windows and doors of their houses. 

  • Chinese New Year Paintings
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Paintings are also widely pasted on doors and windows during this time, and they are done so mainly for decorative reasons and to greet the coming year. The images displayed on the paintings are usually auspicious plants or legendary figures.

  • Kumquat Trees
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Kumquat trees are also very popular in many households during this time of year, especially in places like Macau, Hong Kong, Guangxi, and Guangdong, where Cantonese is widely spoken. If you displayed a kumquat tree in your home during the Chinese New Year, it meant that you wished for both good luck and wealth

  • Blooming Flowers 

Lastly, as the Chinese New Year also signals the end of winter and the beginning of spring, this is also the time when most families who celebrate the festival decorate their houses with bouquets of blooming flowers. Displaying flowers meant that you welcomed the coming of spring and wished for a bountiful new year. 

 

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DIY Fashion

Filipino-Made Products You Should Support 

Filipino-made products

It’s time to shine the spotlight on all things local!

For such a long time, Filipinos have patronized imported products, especially Western ones. The time has come then to pay more attention to our own. Although there’s nothing wrong with patronizing imported products and being influenced by other cultures, we shouldn’t also forget to patronize our own. The Filipino can also create and produce well-designed and quality products. The following are just a few of the local brands and Filipino-made products that we all need to support. 

Filipino-Made Products You Need to Check Out

1. Happy Skin

Filipino-made products to support
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This popular makeup brand has completely local origins, and it was created with the intention of catering to the unique and diverse beauty needs of Filipinas. The people behind this brand made sure that their ingredients are organic and free from toxins to ensure that their clients’ skin gets the best treatment it deserves. Their makeup products provide your skin with a gorgeous matte finish while moisturizing it at the same time. 

2. Human Heart Nature

Tatak Pinoy products
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This brand is not so much a company as it is a social enterprise. The brainchild of the nonprofit organization Gawad Kalinga, Human Heart Nature produces, manufactures, and distributes a wide range of personal hygiene and beauty products that are all organic and gentle on your skin. And they are of such good quality that they’re already competing alongside huge international brands. Aside from the competitive quality of its products, the Human Heart Nature brand is also about creating livelihoods and inclusive enterprises that promote a caring and sustainable attitude toward the environment.

3. ANTHILL Fabric Gallery

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This popular brand is a social enterprise that focuses on infusing local weaving culture and traditions into modern fashion styles. In trying to revive a dying custom by combining it with contemporary fashion, the ANTHILL brand has been able to revitalize the local Filipino weaving culture, aside from providing livelihoods to many local tribal weavers. 

4. Renegade Folk

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Just like the other brands on this list, Renegade Folk’s leather sandals are made by local Filipino artisans. This brand has a growing base of loyal customers, due to the top-notch quality of the sandals themselves and their elegant appeal that also allows for everyday wear. The sandals boast designs that are both laid-back and sophisticated and yet durable—all qualities that define the Filipino spirit. 

5. Kenneth Cobonpue

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What’s a list of top-notch Filipino brands without the distinguished Kenneth Cobonpue furniture pieces that have been hailed the world over? Recognized as “rattan’s first virtuoso” by no less than the prestigious TIME magazine, Kenneth Cobonpue has produced world-class Filipino furniture pieces that have won many awards and recognitions and have been even admired and patronized by big-name clients such as Brad Pitt and the like.

6. Tsaa Laya

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You don’t need to look further than our own shores to find premium quality tea products. Tsaa Laya is a brand created by the nonprofit organization Kapwa Greens Lifestyle, in their aim to provide underprivileged women and mothers with livelihoods that can sustain their families as well as produce quality products that are not just flavorful but also good for the environment. 

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Home Designs Modern Home Designs

Design Forecast: How Will Interior Design Look in 2020?

interior design trends 2020

An entire decade has gone by, and so did a whole collective age of interior design trends. How will this year be remembered in the world of architecture and interior design? What do these new trends speak of the current working population? Read on to find out.

How Will Interior Design Look Like in 2020?

Multifunctional spaces

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In the last few years, open floor plans have become the standard for new homes and renovations, especially for kitchens and living rooms. This year, multiuse spaces will also become part of this evolution. It’s about less formality and more functionality. Your home office can be a guest room, your basement as a media room and home gym, your walk-in closet as a cozy reading nook, etc. Homeowners this year will be more intentional in making their spaces multifunctional to maximize rooms.

Sustainability

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This generation of adults has been gravitating toward more eco-friendly lifestyles because of global warming scares. Due to frequent news stories of climate change and animal extinction, people are now more ecologically conscious and knowledgeable than ever before. The past few years, there has been an ethical component to the purchasing decisions of consumers. As consumers are thinking more long term because of ecological reasons, fewer yet more high-quality pieces will be the trend. This means that fast furniture and decor are on their way out. For this reason, there will also be a continued focus on handmade goods from small-time, independent, quality artists. People now prefer having a connection with the maker and seeking out companies and artists whose product has a story rather than mass-produced, low-quality items.

Bold shades on neutrals

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While everyone stays earthy and eco-friendly, this year, bold shades are going to be popular as people deviate from the overused minimalist feel. The best way to embrace this trend is to sport the Pantone color of the year, which is classic blue. Neutral decor will be replaced by warm colors, saturated hues, and jewel tones. Remember how we brought up an Art Deco revival in Christmas decorations? Well, this trend will live on for the entire year. It’s the ’20s once again after all!

Portables

Due to the ever-increasing population growth in urban areas, the average millennial adult is often left with small apartments to move in. They also move more frequently than their parents. With so many of us opting to rent instead of buying a new home, portables are no longer limited to table and floor lamps. Portable appliances, fixtures, and decorations have been gaining ground to cater to the average working adult. Even renters can tailor a space with swag fixtures now. 

Old and new

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Having a singular design scheme in one space won’t be a popular look in the next decade. For example, the boho look is becoming more refined and mixed with contemporary pieces and modern spaces are becoming warmer and mixed with vintage. Marrying vintage with modern isn’t new. In fact, the most recent vintage revivals have started since the 2010s in many aspects of art. In the Philippines particularly, the current generations have become more interested in their cultural roots and identity. Expect old-fashioned Filipino designs mixed with modern furniture.

Patterns and prints

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From walls and ceilings to pillowcases and table tops, patterns—especially layered patterns—are becoming more prevalent. We’ll be seeing more pattern mixing with color tying together patterns of varying origin and scale. Pattern matching, where the same pattern flows from the wall to upholstered furniture or bedding, is also becoming more common.

Trend breakers

Not following trends is set to become a trend this 2020. Los Angeles–based interior designer Delta Wright says overall anything “uber-unique” will shine in the upcoming decade. We will see highly crafted, unusual materials meticulously featured in furnishings and architecture. Eye-catching items such as artistic rugs, onyx stones, and one-of-a-kind curtains are becoming a popular norm in households. People are beginning to design their homes to reflect their personalities and creating spaces that tell their story. 

 

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