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Showing posts from December, 2009

A Philippine Christmas

The Philippines has the longest Christmas season in the world. It begins the end of September and lasts through January 6 (the feast of the Three Kings in the old calendar). Christmas songs are played over the airwaves and in malls and restaurants. Television shows remind viewers how many days are left till Christmas.

On December 16 "simbang gabi" starts. People would rise in the early hours to attend mass at five in the morning. While it's warm in the Philippines, it gets slightly cooler in December. Outside the church vendors sell freshly made bibingka and puto bumbong*, perfect handwarmers unless you can't wait to eat these till you get home.


Two of the most enduring symbols of Christmas in the islands are the nativity crèche and the parol (Christmas lantern). Many homes display their colorful parols outside their windows so passersby can admire the play of lights. In the old days, the parol was lighted by a candle. Churches have beautiful nativity scenes but ma…

Flavors of the Philippines II

This video is all about a food journey in the Philippines. There are delicacies like diwal, lato and balut. There's an abundance of fresh seafoods like sweet prawns, talaba, pusit and bangus. And there are a number of local dishes like kare kare, pinakbet, pancit canton or bihon or malabon or sotanghon. I just love sweet mangoes and I'm lucky to have guavas, papayas, coconuts, and tiny bananas fluorish in my garden.

For more on Philippine cuisine check out http://www.youtube.com/user/easypinoyfood.

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Celebrating Christmas in San Francisco

San Francisco is all decked out for the holidays.
Under the tree at Nieman Marcus

Victoria Secret "Give Her Sexy"

Outdoor florist
Macy's window
Macy's window
On Union Square
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Photos by Charie