Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Make your own Manger

Christmas is such a special time. It's when family and friends get together, exchange gifts and express their love!  It's just the best season in all the year!

Just because it's Christmas, it's time to prepare for it and make it all the more meaningful.  I'm sharing with you one of the things I've worked on to make our home decorations more unique!

When my husband came home yesterday, the first thing he saw was this manger scene and he said it was such a beautiful sight!

Here's the downloadable face you can trace if you don't want to draw freely on the cloth.  Just right click on it and save on your computer.  You can use tracing paper or use these alternative ways to trace the image.


How to Make your own Manger

Here's a closeup of the dolls.  You can make them more colorful for sure!

Just to let you know, I used mostly recyclable materials just lying around our home.  I only bought the lights and nothing more!  So this project doesn't cost much!

Let me know how you made your Christmas decor special in the comments below!

Find more crafts at

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Along the Way

“Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.” Luke 17:19

There story goes where there were ten lepers.  In today's terms, these would be ten outcasts as people would never go near lepers in those days.  These ten people would have been suffering physically as well as emotionally.

But they asked God for healing and He told them to show themselves to the priests.  They did as they were told and started to head towards the direction of the priests.  But along the way, they were miraculously healed!

It occurred to me that life mostly happens along the way.  Students long for graduation, pregnant women long for the birth of their child, some hope for riches, others for beauty or fame...  But many forget that the magic happens along the way.

God rarely answers our prayers in a finger snap.  He allows us to wait.  The waiting is an essential part of life.  All of nature waits.

I heard of a man who was asked by God to move a boulder.  He started to push.  A day passed, a week passed and the months turned into years.  In anguish he asked the Lord why the boulder has not moved an inch.  God told him to look at his arms which had grown strong and muscular through time.  What God wanted was actually taking place. 

I get really frustrated at not being able to speak Nihonggo yet after more than a year here.  Arrggghhh.  Sometimes you just want to give up.  But there are so many things I miss out when I want things over and done with.  I am getting to know my teachers and classmates day by day and appreciating their uniqueness - and the different cultures from whence they came.  I would miss out on all the laughter and learning and songs and fun we have in class if I didn't need to come.

So take care not to miss the healing and the strengthening and the waiting in the journey.  Don't hurry into the future and don't despair when your dreams seem too far off.  Keep moving in the direction God wants you in and you will experience all you seek along the way.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Calendar is Done!

So excited to share my calendar design for 2018!

I've been working long hours to churn out next year's wall calendar for our shop Papemelroti.  It took a lot of overtime I must say since there was a lot of nice stuff to put in there.

The concept was travel and sketching, 2 things that (most) everyone likes doing!  

The idea of making drawings of buildings and cultural elements from different countries came from my (brilliant) husband ahem ahem.  I must say I wouldn't have thought this up just by myself.

I learned so much from making this project.  The calendar includes quotes from that country so for example, the saying "There is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved" comes from France. (which is actually 2 things).  

Each month also includes a load of interesting trivia and of course my illustrations.  These were definitely fun to do!

It would be fun to go to each of these places and experience these same things!  How about seeing the building with a highway running through it?

At the back of the calendar there is a small pocket where you can keep something from your favorite memories like a bus ticket or movie passes...

I hope you find time to check out my calendar as well as Papemelroti designer Elyse Pilapil's wall calendar at all Papemelroti stores around Metro Manila!

Here's wishing you the best year of your life in 2018!

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Recycrafting Plastic

Whenever I buy something plastic, I feel a tinge of guilt knowing that plastic is non-biodegradable (though some plastics are).

Today, I'm going to make the world a greener, more natural place (even in a minuscule way).  I'm going to recycle a plastic tissue holder.  It's large.  It's durable.  It's going to be more useful!

Your creation can be something other than this particular piece.  Shampoo bottles when cut can be turned into pencil holders and pencil cases with this technique!  Comment below if you want to see that!

This is definitely not a earth-shaking project but I think it's one of the most easiest way to recycle things and make them pretty!

white glue
paper with designs (magazines or computer print outs)
varnish / sealant

The process

Decoupage takes only a few steps.  

1. Choose your design.  We suggest looking at magazines and posters that you're not using anymore and cutting these up to form the design.  

2. Measure the surface.  Cut and layout the paper to fit the surface you wish to cover.  Some people choose to paint the surface first so the colors below don't seep through.  You can opt to do that as well.

3. Get a brush and some glue.  Use a 1=1 mixture.  For example, 1 tablespoon of glue = 1 tablespoon of water.  Mix well.

4. Cover the surface with the glue mixture and then the fun part comes - stick on the paper neatly.  Take care to smooth out any bubbles that normally form during the process.

5. You can cut curved edges so they overlap and keep adhering to the shape of whatever form you are covering.

6. Dry.

7. Varnish or spray with a sealant to protect the surface.

Tadah!!!  Ready to use again!

Thursday, October 5, 2017

A Silent War

A war has been waging without people really noticing.

In the late 60's, people started rebelling against the norm.  The birth control pill was invented ... soon after the sexual revolution started.  Prayer was banned in schools.  Drugs and promiscuity abounded.  People wanted to be "free".  Free from laws and restrictions and authority.

They waged a war.  It was a war on virtue, holiness and God's law.  Basically a war against God.

Decades later, we see a world torn by strife.  Countries waging wars within themselves still fighting about the same issues.  More than 60 million babies have been aborted in the name of women's rights.

But if we look at God's laws, it seems silly to want to run away from them.  Let's see how the Bible describes God's law...

Psalm 19 says a lot about how wonderful God's law is.

If you're a parent, you know how difficult it is to discipline a child.  But you also know that you need to set some rules for your child's good. 

"Don't play in the middle of the road" is a good example.  Now if the child was obedient, he would be much safer than the child who wishes to be "free" from rules and restrictions.

God's law is pretty much the same thing.  We should be running after them and studying them, so that we can be better off!  Don't you think?

If a parent had a magic wand to instantly make his child obedient... consequently removing his freedom to choose, would he use it?  He might. But what kind of child would he have?  He'd ultimately have a robot.

If the Creator of the whole universe loved us enough to give us the choice to follow Him or not - isn't the best, most wisest thing to do be to follow His law to the letter?  Simply because He knows best.  Father does know best.  

We need to stop playing in the middle of the road!  We need to stop playing with fire in our lives. We need to stop thinking we know best!  Let's not experiment with our souls.  He has seen it all. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the last!  Let's follow His laws!  Let's not live for ourselves.  Life is short.  Let's live the best way ever - God's way!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

A Circle of Fire

"I will be for her an encircling wall of fire," says the Lord.  Zechariah 2:9

The Lord allows us to live in the midst of uncertainty.   Many countries are under the threat of terrorism.  Some are in the middle of an ongoing war of drugs.  Some can have a nuclear missile dropped on them at any minute.

The Lord doesn't take away the threats in our daily lives.  It can be fear, bitterness, loneliness, sickness or poverty that plagues us.  

But His promises of protection are no small thing.  

"He will guard us, a shepherd guarding his flock"  Jeremiah 31:10

He will be for us an encircling wall of fire!

We cannot really measure God's power.  We can only see that nothing that plagues nor threatens us compares to it.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Flower Decor Craft

One of the things my husband gave me for my birthday were some Chrysanthemums.  I've been wanting to have some plants for the longest time but somehow I couldn't make up my mind what kind to get.

After a day though, one of the stems broke off.    Yes, I did research how to care for them but still, this flower had its own plans.

As they say, "Waste not, want not" so even a tiny flower shouldn't be put to waste!

I got some kitchen cleaning sheets and sandwiched the flower stems inside 2 sheets.  I was careful to lay it flat on the sheet so it would dry nicely with as little air passing through the sheets as possible.

I could just imagine these in a bookmark or picture frame or something.

There they go tucked away in a book for later use.

That same book had a few flowers I've been drying.  So let's take a peek how we will use them...

So, getting some packaging material from a gift we got last Christmas, I layout all the flowers inside the little "window".

Do you like it?

Let's see, maybe we can do it another way!

How about this?  I encased my artwork with the dried flowers to add a bit of interest.

Which style do you like best?

I sure hope you enjoyed today's craft!

Thursday, September 14, 2017


So today i was telling my husband about a play i was in many years ago. 

I played the character Pink and sang and acted and wore a tutu. The other characters were Green, (the hero) Violet (the villain) Yellow (the victim) and so on. 

There was trouble in colorland and whenever she could, Pink would wipe someone's tears or encourage the faint-hearted. 

The play's director told us that every character you play, would stay with you for the rest of your life. I'm glad that Pink was such a lovable character to play. I cannot deny that i do have an affinity for the color pink, that is after white. 

But what is the point of all this reminiscing? It's the prism I guess. I looked out of our balcony and saw this. 

Life gives you a character to play all your life. But the play is not yet written until the very end. You won't know what happens in the end just like a whodunit mystery. 

Every so often we think that we know all our lines and how it will all end. And then... voila... A plot twist!

So as i look at the rainbow, i remember pestering God with all my what if's. And all He says is "Put out into the deep." 

Well a year later, I can see that the deep is where I was meant to be. All His promises have come true and there is more to come! God is full of surprises and He has a rainbow for each and every one of us.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Love like the Sun

Happy first wedding anniversary to us!

I guess getting married is somewhat of a big risk in life.  Thank God that He picked the one for me!  I didn't trust myself to pick a husband!

After a very very short year (it just went SOOO VERY FAST that the anniversary creeped up on me), I can say that my husband was even more wonderful than I thought he was!  I asked him not to change ever.  And he didn't!  Still, I can't say he hasn't been more kind, more selfless, more loving than before.  Every day with him is more beautiful!

That's why I wrote him this song.

Sorry I just had a guitar in hand, some scribbled words and chords, and not a lot of time to do a polished recording.

The song will give you a feel of how our marriage is!  It's just like the sun!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Recycle an Old Bedsheet into a Skirt!

My husband knows me so well! His bed sheet zipper broke so, instead of throwing it away, he asked if I wanted it.

Of course I did!

My mind raced to think of what I could make with it. Since it's hefty amount of fabric, I didn't have to settle with just one project!

Since our space is quite limited, I couldn't keep a piece of cloth unattended for long.

I thought, with  the summer season being so hot, to make a wrap around skirt.  It took me half a day because I didn't have my sewing machine at the time.  So everything here is hand-sewn.

Sharing with you my half day project!   Enjoy!


Old bed sheet
Dressmaker's Chalk / Pencil
Needle and Thread
Buttons or Velcro


Make sure your fabric is not crumpled so you won't have a hard time cutting it.  Try to wrap it around yourself (or whoever is going to wear the skirt later) and see what length you want it to be.  Allow about 1/2 more than the desired width because the skirt will shrink once we put darts on it.

If you want to do it the easy way, do it like I did ...  Since the bed sheet I had was actually a futon cover, which had quite thin sheets, I didn't even separate the fabric sheets. I just cut across it (3/4 of the way) and then used the hemmed side as the skirt length.

If you don't see any way to use the hemmed sides, then just measure the length of the skirt according to your desired height and width and allow for a margin of 1 inch at the sides where it needs hemming.

You're actually cutting a giant rectangle.  Sample size would be 5 ft x 3.5 ft for a small sized lady.  You can also make it 7 ft if you want to have the skirt wrap generously around you.

I did this on the floor.  It really helps to cut on a large, flat surface... the floor is perfect!  Just clean it :)

The fabric should perfectly align.

Yay sewing time!

So now you have a huge rectangle with only the top part (for the waist area) without any hemming.  (No need since we will be covering that part with the wrap tie.)

And now for the darts!

I made my dart triangles 1 inch at the top and then dipping 2 inches down.  For the darts on the sides of your hips, make the darts 2 inches at the top and dipping down maybe 4 inches for a more shapely skirt.

Once it looks like this, you know you're on the right track.

(1/2 inch from the edge of the darts, I mean.)

So the next thing to do is make the band for the waist part of the skirt.

To do that, cut a band of fabric from the unused cloth cuttings.  Maybe 8 ft (to be sure) in length and around 5 inches in width.

Once the waistband is finished, turn it inside out and use a blind stitch to hem the edges.

Attach to the unhemmed portion of the skirt!  I just used a double stitch on the edge (shown above).

Optional:  If you did what I did and cut the length of the fabric too short, you'll need a few buttons to secure the skirt.  If you used my instructions here on the size of the large rectangle fabric, you won't need buttons - it will be long enough to wrap around to keep you modest.

You can also use velcro instead of buttons!  If by now you're pretty tired, you can just look for iron on velcro.

I hope you liked this project!  We have more DIY's at the shop site here!


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