Sunday, September 30, 2012

Midnight Snacks: The Delish is in the Details

I don't think I'll ever stop blogging about Midnight Snacks.  Not if they don't stop coming up with awesome stuff like this!

Ok, It was Kenji and Alpha's birthdays.  And Miro thought what better way to celebrate it than with a Finn and Jake theme.  Boy and dog = boy and dog.  Perfect!  Kenji loves that show, too, so double awesome.

Of course, there were things to consider with joint birthday cakes like this.  Kenji loves chocolates, and Alpha can't eat chocolate (it's a dog thing).  And I didn't want an obvious cut in the middle of the cake design.  Midnight Snacks had a creative solution to that, of course. Half of the cupcakes were chocolate-flavored and designed to be the snow-covered lair of the Ice King.  The other half were carrot cupcakes topped with the grassy woods of Finn and Jake's treehouse locale.  All tied together by the magically elastic arms of Jake. Brilliant!

As you would have it, the final execution floored us --A-GAIN!

From the character craftsmanship.  See Finn's sock folds and BMO's buttons?!

To the dioramic details.  Treehouse for the win!

To the tiniest tidbits.  It's Gunther and the gang, man!  All half an inch of them!

Miro was in complete awe at how Midnight Snacks pulled this off.  It took him a while to finally sink his teeth into these masterpieces.  He was particularly concerned about destroying the Ice King's lair. :P

Kenji loved his cake so much that he would rather re-arrange the pieces and stare at them.  Then, re-arrange them again and stare at them again.  Haha!

Alpha... well, when she gets her cake, she'll eat it, too!  Smart girl.  Midnight Snacks don't just make fabulous cake art, but they make them crazy-tasty, too.  The carrot cake was insanely delicious!

Oh, there's more where that came from! For more daring designs and drool-inducing delectables, check out Midnight Snacks here.
Or, you can just wait for my next blog.  I'm ordering our next cake soon. :)

Friday, September 28, 2012

The Soda Bottle Lego Keeper, Gunther

For weeks, I've been itching to work on this soda bottle penguin project my awesome friend, Betchay, told me about.  For.  Weeks.
Finally, the opportune time came!  It was Recycle Day at school, and Kenji wanted to bring a new craft for show and tell.  YAY!  (I thrive on cheap thrills, can't you tell?)

There are tons of instructional blogs on the net on how you can make this cool, little dude.  But Kenji and I thought we'd add our own crafty twist to it. 
Here we go...

First off, don't throw away those empty soda bottles.  You can make a whole rookery of penguins with them!  If you wanted to.  And who wouldn't? :P

After cleaning thoroughly, chop the bottom halves of two bottles, making sure one is shorter than the other.  I had to recruit my husband for this and his trusty, extra sharp shears.

Other blogs would tell you to get down to painting at this point.  But us Papier Macheniacs slathered the plastic bottles with tissue and PVC glue first.  This is to make a sturdier penguin.  And to make poster color work.  Poster color will slide off plastic surfaces, and we didn't have acrylic paint at the time.  So...
A plus!  Papier mache-ing dulls the bottles' cut edges, too, making it safer for kids to handle.

Use your marker to draw the penguin's features and to design his little hat.

NOW, you can paint.

Wait for it to dry and... SWISHBANG!... you got your very own Soda Bottle Penguin!

Other blogs would stop there.  But Kenji and I didn't, of course.  Recycling plastic bottles into adorable pieces of art is cool and all, but we wanted to introduce practicality into the mix, too.  I mean, it IS an empty soda bottle.  Why waste the space, right?

And so the Soda Bottle Lego Keeper, Gunther, is born.

Make your own soda bottle penguin.  Squeeze in your own personal touch to it.  And have loads of fun with your kids.
Oh, and ace Recycle Day, too.  Woot!  Thanks again, Betchay!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Rurouni Kenshin. Fangirling. On.

Now how do I say this without suffering a heart attack?


Ok, that wasn't so bad.

Background to the madness:  My entire childhood was set against the colorful and chaotic backdrop of anime.  Aside from having mild crushes on Mark Gordon of Voltes V and Richard of Daimos, I've always had a thing for Kenshin Himura of Samurai X.  I even named our youngest son after his son, Kenji.  Obsessed much?!!

And now, I'll get to see the live action movie on the big screen!

Now, don't get me wrong.  I'm still that skeptic movie goer who's just so sure that any movie translation of a finely crafted cartoon series will fall flat on its realistic face.

But after seeing Rurouni Kenshin's official trailer, I'm having positive second thoughts.  The casting is flawless!  The action is superb!  Oh, and don't get me started on the soundtrack!  More importantly, the darkness that is Kenshin is so there!

Whew, so many exclams.  Let me drag myself back to earth.  SM Cinema has pegged October 17, 2012 as the epic movie's break date on Philippine soil.  Oh.My.God.  If I were in my right critiquing mind, I would demand for English subtitles.  But right now, I'll be happy with the pure Japanese version.  That's how giddily fangirling I am!

PS.  Right mind coming back on:  They better not dub this in Tagalog.  Thank you.

UPDATE:  After much a-do, Rurouni Kenshin is finally showing on Philippine soil on December 5, 2012.  Early Christmas, for realz!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

And So I Instagram

Sometimes you are slapped with problems where you are rendered almost completely helpless.  Like when a loved one gets admitted for days and days on end battling a disease.  In this war, he wins one minute, he loses the next, he wins the next minute, and so on.  And there's nothing much you can do but stay and watch him go through this internal struggle, silently rooting for the underdog.
It's a waiting game.  A nerve-racking waiting game. 

I can spend hours screaming over the lack of control over the situation.  Or, I can channel the aggression into something more productive and creative.  Honestly, when faced with issues like this, the best way to survive yourself is to welcome a good distraction.

Mine is Instagram.

It's not much, but I look at these as art in the middle of chaos.  The photographic series also serves as something to chronicle a challenging event in our lives.  Something you survive.  Something you learn from.

I'm confident all this pain and uncertainty will fade away soon.  But in the meantime, I'll draw my strength from a vision ...and an app.