Friday, December 29, 2006

Investing Time

How we spend our time is one the most important investment decisions we ever make. Time is a non-renewable commodity. Once it's gone, it's gone and will never come back. Right now, with the New Year about to emerge, is a great time to think about this. Otherwise, after we've written "2006" a few times instead of "2007" we will fall right back into our old habits.

The bad news is time flies. The good news is you're the pilot.
- Michael Altshuler

Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time,
for that is the stuff life is made of.
- Benjamin Franklin

Every time a New Year rolls around, we think of all kinds of changes we're going to make, whether losing weight, getting in shape, kicking our cigarette habit, or working on our career. But we seldom think of the most important change of all: investing our time more wisely so that we get the most out of it - time that gives us fulfillment, time that improves our personality, times that make us happy, and time that we can use to help others. Time will never come back, but we can decide how to spend it

posted by Rachelle
at 2:40 PM


Thursday, December 28, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #3

Thirteen Things I've Accomplished in 2006

1. Artistic Poets' January Poet of the Month
2. The Creative Pen's February Poet of the Month
3.'s $25 author winner for best article in March
4. New Age Incorporated's April Writer of the Month
5. WSE Self-esteem Contest Winner
6. Received a certificate of recognition from Poetry in a Cup.
7. Featured at Chaotic Dreams Online as September's Dream Weaver.
8. Interviewed by reputable magazines thrice for my poetic works.
9. Two of my stories got accepted in Health and Home and I got paid with a check worth 1010 php for each acceptance and another story made it to a Canadian Family Magazine where I got $75
10. Snagged 32 books from online contests and book giveaways (December alone)
11. Aced the Poetry Contest at for 3 consecutive months ($60 prize)
12. Won the Secret Attic Poetry Competition.
13. My poems were publihed in 15 books in 2006.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


posted by Rachelle
at 12:53 PM


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Looking Ahead

Times change..and the new year is approaching, so this is always a good time to look back at what you've accomplished over the year, and be proud of it. It's also a time to take note of the things you didn't accomplish, and start setting goals for the new year. Whatever you choose to do, another year is undeniably approaching, and the days of 2006 are withering to an end.

For me, I always look at this time of year as a mark of change. The new year brings new possibilities, and acts as a fresh start; a new beginning. While you can't go back and change the negativities of your can always look forward, and begin to mold and change your future. For the most part, you can count on the new year to bring new aspects into your life.'s to 2007!

posted by Rachelle
at 2:33 PM


Friday, December 22, 2006

Congratulations! Please claim your prize.

Congratulations! Please claim your prize.

It's in today's news.

A certain Minela Dolor from Ilocos/La Union won a whopping 1 million pesos from the government's promo of "Premyo sa Resibo" but almost forfeited her prize because of her reluctance to even admit to herself that she did win. She claimed that all her life she never won anything and only heard of other "chance" winners from televisions and other media means. Add to the fact that hoaxes and scams are very rampant.

It was until a few days before the 60-day claiming period when a long distant relative of her went out of her way to convince her that she did win before she started verifying from the involved agencies and eventually claiming her prize.

It's striking resemblance to our lives is profoundly obvious.

We are all WINNERS already to begin with.
And we don't even have to buy any ticket or follow dizzying game mechanics to win it. We only need to recognize it, accept it and live it so we do not forfeit it anymore.
Isn't that wonderful?

Jesus laid His life as our wager for us to "win" the opening of the gates into Heaven.

Oh, and by the way, we should also become a "distant relative" to others and go out of our way as often as we can to inform our brothers and sisters about their prize waiting to be claimed. Remind them that all they have to do is dial Heaven's toll-free-toil-for-the-kingdom hotline.

Congratulations to all of us!

Merry Christmas to you and to your family.

posted by Rachelle
at 9:28 PM


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #2

Thirteen Things I Love About Christmas

1. Exchanging gifts - Oh, I just love presents!
2. Christmas dinner: all kinds of hams, at least 12 varieties of fruits, chocolates, cakes, ice cream, lechon, beef steaks, eggs
3. Burning the telephone wires 'til wee hours in the morning
4. Shopping for stocking stuffers and gifts for nieces/nephews and godchildren
5. Seeing old friends
6. Fireworks display
7. Christmas contests and giveaways
8. Invitation to parties from the 17th to the 25th (a good way to lose weight while gaining a little bit more ..hehehe! )
12. Movie marathon with grapes as popcorn.
13. Curling up on the sofa in a dark room with only the Christmas tree for light with hot chocolate or a glass of wine and Christmas music playing.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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posted by Rachelle
at 10:09 PM


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Unusual Christmas Traditions


On the second Sunday before Christmas, children creep in and tie their mother's feet to a chair, shouting 'Mother's Day, Mother's Day, what will you pay to get away?' Surprisingly, she then gives them presents. Children play the same trick on their father the following week and the children get more presents. Unfortunately, parents don't get to do the same to their children the week after.


Kiviak is a gastronomical Christmas treat from Greenland which, for some reason, hasn't been adopted by many other nations. It's made from the raw flesh of an auk which has been buried under a stone in sealskin for several months until it's achieved an advanced stage of decomposition. Apparently, it smells like old blue cheese and tastes very pungent.


In the Christian homes, a child reads the story of the Nativity from an Arabic Bible while other family members hold lighted candles. As soon as the story has been read a bonfire made of dried thorns is lit and the family sing a psalm. If the thorns burn to ashes, the family will have good fortune during the coming year. When the fire has burned down, everyone jumps over the ashes three times and makes a wish.


Ever wondered where the phrase 'putting the bite on' comes from? At Christmastime, in some rural areas of south Wales, the Mari Llwyd is a person hiding under a horsehair sheet (a brethyn rhawn) whilst carrying a horse's skull on a pike .The Mari Llwyd wanders the streets with a band of mummers and anyone 'given the bite' by the horse's jaws must pay a cash fine.


The Labanese plant chickpeas, wheat grains, beans and lentils in cotton wool, a fortnight before Christmas. They water the seeds every day and at Christmas, the sprouted shoots are used to surround the manger in nativity scenes.


In Portugal, the 'consoda' feast takes place on the morning of Christmas Day. Extra places are set at table for the souls of the dead and they are offered food to these souls to bring luck to the family during the forthcoming year.

HED Ebook Banner Exchange


posted by Rachelle
at 2:47 PM


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Are You Wasting Your Time with New Year's Resolutions?

Every year millions of people resolve to change their life on New Years
Eve. Whether they are going to stop smoking, lose weight or get their
dream job, they make a resolution to make that change in their life.

In just a few days all but a small fraction of these people will have
broken their New Years resolutions and be making excuses as to why they
are not changing.


Firstly, people set themselves unreasonable expectations. We vastly
over-estimate how much we can achieve in a day, a week or even a year, yet
we dramatically under-estimate how much we can achieve in 10 years.

Trying to lose three stone in a month is next to impossible without
losing a limb! If you made a New Years resolution that was actually
achievable you'd have a fighting chance of sticking to it.

New Years Resolutions tend to be "eat better" or "Stop smoking" or
"stop drinking" or something along these lines. Unless you have some
powerful motivation, you may find it difficult to suddenly make these big
changes in your life.

Resolutions like these are vague and not really achievable. When you
say "eat better", what do you actually mean? And more importantly, what
is actually achievable. When you say "stop drinking" or "get fitter",
what is on your mind? Stopping completely or just cutting down to a
couple of drinks a week? Training to run a marathon or just being able to walk
up the stairs without wheezing like a steam train?

Make your resolutions 100% achievable by defining them so you know
exactly when you've achieved them. "Reduce my drinking to 5 units of
alcohol a week". You know exactly what you want to achieve, you have a target
to aim at. "Be fit enough to run a mile in 10 minutes", another precise
target to aim at.

Make sure you know when you want to achieve your resolution. Most
people make these resolutions on New Years Eve and expect some magic to
happen at midnight and their resolution be achieved for them.

It doesn't work like that!

"Reduce my drinking to 5 units of alcohol a week by the end of January"
- precise target and a deadline. You know exactly what you have to
achieve and when you need to achieve it by. It's also realistically

The majority of people will make resolutions because they feel they
ought to. It's the end of the year and everyone does it, so they should
really make some resolutions. Unfortunately, this results in wishy washy
resolutions that you don't really want to achieve.

Don't just make resolutions at New Years, set goals all year around
when you feel the need and when you want to achieve something. Every
single successful person in the world has a set of goals they are working

Make sure you have powerful reasons why you absolutely must achieve
your resolution. Don't make a resolution because your friend Bob has -
make it because you want it to happen. Otherwise you're not going to
achieve it without a visit from the good luck fairy.

Your reasons why you have to achieve your resolution (and why you
cannot achieve it) are your rocket fuel for achieving your resolution.
Your reasons provide you with motivation and propel you towards you
resolution, hence you need powerful, motivating reasons.

A lot of resolutions will fail because they are made on a conscious
level without the agreement or participation of your sub-conscious. If
sub-consciously you do not want to achieve a resolution then you are going
to sabotage your efforts. It is vital you get the buy-in of your
sub-conscious mind. Without it, you are much more likely to fail.

This means listening to yourself when you make a resolution. You will
know immediately yourself if it is achievable and if your sub-conscious
is behind you. Hypnosis and hypnosis CD's are an excellent way to get
the conscious and sub-conscious minds to work together to success.

Basically, make sure you actually want to achieve your resolution. If
you don't, either don't set it or find some motivating reasons why you
must achieve it.

In summary, make your resolutions MAPPED:

Precisely timed

Resolutions are great to set at New Years, but why wait to New Years to
make those changes in your life that you've been waiting to change. Now
is a great time to start so you can beat the rush.

Over the Christmas holiday you normally get some quiet time. Instead of
lounging in front of the television, spend this time deciding what you
want from life. Do you realise people spend more time planning their
summer vacation than they spend planning the rest of their lives?

Take the opportunity to give yourself a gift this Christmas; the gift
of mapping out your life and creating the life of your dreams.


posted by Rachelle
at 3:22 PM


Sunday, December 17, 2006

Tawny Taylor's contest

Tawny Taylor is proud to announce the launch of a new vampire series titled TWILIGHT’S POSSESSION in 2007. With it comes a new website,, and a new myspace,

To celebrate the new series, and a second piece of good news--the official acceptance of Real Vampires Don’t Drink O-Neg by Kensington (Sept. 2007)--Tawny is holding a contest.

The prize: A Vampire Lover’s gift basket full of terrific paranormal romance novels, a tote to carry them, and (not shown) a few necessities to help the winner score a sexy alpha vampire of her own.

To enter: email tawny at with the name for the secret brotherhood of warriors AND their creed copied and pasted into the body of an email (no attachments will be opened). To assure your entry in the contest, please put the words Vampire Lover Contest in the subject line. And please, don’t forget to include your name and contact information.

No purchase necessary.

A BONUS: Extra chances will be awarded to anyone who posts this announcement (including the live links below for Tawny’s websites) on his/her blog and/or myspace. One extra chance per post, up to a maximum of five extra chances per person. So post away! Please! To receive the extra chances, please send a link of the live post in the body of your email, along with your contact information.

Entries accepted Dec. 1 through Dec. 31 (11:59pm, Eastern US Time) The drawing will be held on New Year’s Day and the winner will be announced on Twilights Possession by 5:00 PM Jan. 1, 2007.

Finally, Tawny would like to wish everyone a blessed Christmas and New Year.

Links for contest:
Tawny Taylor’s Erotic Romance with Sassitude
Tawny Taylor’s Twilight’s Possession

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posted by Rachelle
at 10:58 PM


Four Things

I got tagged for this a while back. So here are the significant FOURS in my life:

Four most important people in my life:
1. my mom
2. my dad
3. my fiance
4. my youngest brother

Four things I can't live without:

1. my pc
2. cash (must be at least 1500 php per day)
3. my meds
4. fruits

Four weird things about me:

1. I can't sleep without reading my mails.
2. I can't eat on time.
3. I write when I like to. No one can force me to write when I don't feel like scribbling. (I'm quite impulsive..hehehe..even editors can't move me)
4. I'm a shopaholic (I can spend as much as 8000-10 000 php in a normal day)

Four kinds of people I hate most:

1. those who doesn't admit defeat
2. hypocrites
3. arrogant fools
4. envious jerks

Four adjectives that best describes me:

1. carefree
2. playful
3. sophisticated
4. rational/logical

Four favorite foods:

1. pasta
2. tiramisu
3. fruit decadence
4. ice cream

Four movies I could watch over and over:

1. A Beautiful Mind
2. Secret Window
3. Legally Blonde 1
4. The Notebook

Four TV shows I enjoy:

1. The Tyra Banks Show
2. Merge
3. Myx's Daily Hit Chart
4. Ambush Makeover

Four places I'd like to visit:
1. France
2. Utah
3. Iceland
4. Hawaii

Four websites I go to daily:
1. My homepage
2. Stifled Squeal

Yesterday, my site was picked Blog of the Day by 2006 Weblog Awards - Blog Of The Day Awards - Top Blog Awards. Thanks a lot to those who nominated me. I'm so pleased to post the award button here:

Blog Of The Day Awards Winner

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posted by Rachelle
at 3:26 PM


Saturday, December 16, 2006

Saturday Poetry

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posted by Rachelle
at 2:20 PM


Thursday, December 14, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #1

Thirteen Things about RACHELLE

1. I was born a frail child (with an eye defect and a low immune system)
2. I had fever on and off until I was 5 years old. (The doctors predicted I'd be epileptic if the chills continued 'til I reach 7)
3. My birthday is June 22 while my brother's (next to me) bday is June 23.
4. I'm 22 years old now.
5. I'm engaged.
6. I have 2 brothers and a half-sis.
7. I gained 13 kilograms since I got sick 2 years ago.
8. I thrashed my wardrobe because all my clothes won't fit me anymore.
9. I never finished school because after I was diagnosed with lupus, I became housebound.
10. I'm only taking online classes now.
11. In just one year, my poems have been published in fifteen anthology books (paperback).
12. I was the Secret Attic Poetry Competition winner last November.
13. I won's poetry contest from Sept-Nov.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Labels: , ,

posted by Rachelle
at 4:48 PM


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Wedding Donts

posted by Rachelle
at 3:26 PM


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Never Ceese by Sue Dent

Robert is a vampire and Ceese is a werewolf maiden. Each suffered innocently under a curse that was not of their own making, and each was determined never to curse another by taking their blood. Can anyone suffering under such a curse find salvation? Will this unlikely pair fall in love?

From the back cover:

A vampire...

A werewolf...

Can two who were wronged make it right?

One selfless act
--By their Faith.

posted by Rachelle
at 4:36 PM


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

A-Z of Me

A - Available/Single? Engaged..
B - Best Friend? My fiance
C - Cake or Pie? Cake
D - Drink Of Choice? Green Tea or Iced Tea
E - Essential Item You Use Everyday? my pc
F - Favorite Color? Shades of red (pink and purple)
G - Gummy Bears Or Worms? Gummy Bears
H - Hometown? (born in ) Cebu, Philippines
I - Indulgence? Tiramisu and creme brulees
J - January Or February? January (my bf's birth month)
K - Kids & Their Names? not yet..but I already have names in mind
L - Life Is Incomplete Without? my pc
M - Marriage Date? undecided yet but hopefully next year
N - Number Of Siblings? 2 (3 including my half-sis)
O - Oranges Or Apples? Oranges, definitely
P - Phobias/Fears? getting pregnant (lol) before my lupus stabilizes, psychosis, losing the love of my life
Q - Favorite Quote? Never look down on anybody unless you're helping him.
R - Reason to Smile - having found the love of my life who loves me more than life itself
S - Season? Summer (no choice, we got only 2 seasons)
T - Tag Four People? not yet...
U - Unknown Fact About Me? I can get obsessive and compulsive
V - Vegetable you don’t like? Broccoli, asparagus
W - Worst Habit? late meals (i just can't eat on time, no matter what i do! arghh!)
X - X-rays You’ve Had? on my nose and lungs
Y - Your Favorite Food? desserts...(i'm a sweet tooth)
Z - Zodiac Sign? Cancer

posted by Rachelle
at 4:12 PM


Monday, December 04, 2006

Have You Ever...

I was at Gina C.'s website (Portrait of a Writer) when I came across a list of things that she possesses or has done in her life (Nov 27 post). The post was called "Have You Ever..." and I just thought it was a fun thing to do. It's like counting sheeps, ah, I mean memories, mishaps and other things in between, in broad daylight. Now, that's something exciting to start a day with. Here's my take on it:

posted by Rachelle
at 4:11 PM


Friday, December 01, 2006

Eye of the Oracle by Bryan Davis

It is December 1st, time for the FIRST Day Blog Tour! (Join our alliance! Click the button!) The FIRST day of every month we will feature an author and their latest book's FIRST chapter!

This month's feature author is:


and his latest book:

Eye of the Oracle

Bryan Davis is the author of the four book Dragons in Our Midst series, a contemporary/fantasy blend for young people. The first book, Raising Dragons, was released in July of 2004. The second book, The Candlestone, followed in October. Circles of Seven debuted in April of 2005, followed in November by Tears of a Dragon.

Bryan is the author of several other works including The Image of a Father (AMG) and Spit and Polish for Husbands (AMG), and four books in the Arch Books series: The Story of Jesus' Baptism and Temptation, The Day Jesus Died, The Story of the Empty Tomb (over 100,000 sold), and Jacob's Dream. Bryan lives in Winter Park, Florida with his wife, Susie, and their children. Bryan and Susie have homeschooled their four girls and three boys.

To read more about Bryan and his books, visit the Dragons in our Midst Website or visit Bryan's blog.

Eye of the Oracle
by Bryan Davis

Dragons in our Midst - Prequel
Oracles of Fire - Volume 1

- 1 -

The Seeds of Eden

Angling into a plunging dive, the dragon blasted a fireball at Lilith and Naamah. The two women dropped to the ground just as the flaming sphere sizzled over their heads. Naamah swatted her hair, whipping away stinging sparks that rained down from the fireball's tail.

With a flurry of wings and a gust of wind, the dragon swooped low. As razor sharp claws jabbed at the women, Naamah lunged to the side, and Lilith rolled through the grass. A single claw caught Lilith's long black dress, ripping it as the dragon lifted toward the sky.

Naamah jumped to her feet and helped Lilith up. The dragon made a sharp turn in the air, and, with its jagged-toothed maw stretching open, charged back toward them.

Lilith pushed a trembling hand into the pocket of her dress. "Only one hope left," she said, panting. Pulling out a handful of black powder, she tossed it over her head. "Give me darkness!" she cried.

The powder spread out into a cloud and surrounded the women. Naamah coughed and spat. The noxious fumes blinded her and coated her throat with an acrid film. A hand grabbed her wrist and jerked her down to her knees just as another flaming cannon ball passed over their heads.

"Crawl!" Lilith ordered.

Naamah scooted alongside Lilith as she scuffled over the dry tufts of grass. Sparks from the rain of fire ignited tiny blazes that illuminated their hands as they passed through the veil of darkness.

Naamah gagged but refused to cough. With a guardian dragon hovering somewhere overhead, giving any clue to their whereabouts could be fatal.

After several minutes, Lilith whispered, "I think I found the cave."

Her hands, barely visible and clutching a small bundle of sticks, crawled over a bed of gravel and then to a rocky floor. When she finally stopped, Naamah sat up and gazed into the dark cloud behind her. She squeezed fractured words through her tingling throat. "Will the dragon follow?"

"Shachar is persistent," Lilith rasped, "but she is no fool." She coughed quietly, clearing her voice. "She will not risk the possibility that we're a diversion for a more dangerous attack. If she doesn't find us soon, she will go back on patrol."

"What about her dragon sense? Won't that draw her to us?"

"I'm not sure. A dragon's danger alarm is still a mystery to me. I think since our only direct threat is to the ancient garden she patrols, her sense of protection will draw her there."

The black cloud began to dissipate, revealing the mouth of a shallow cave, barely deep enough to keep out the wind. Close to the back wall, the women found a flat stone and built a fire next to it with Lilith's collection of sticks. When the crackling flames began to rise, Lilith and Naamah sat on the stone to rest.

From her pocket, Lilith withdrew a small bundle wrapped in a black cloth. After untying a knot on one end, she produced an earthenware cup filled with herbs. "The way to Eden has yet another obstacle," she said, tossing a pinch of the herbs into the campfire. "Our task will not be easy."

Sparks flew toward the cave's low ceiling, riding on thin strings of silvery-green smoke. Naamah breathed deeply of the aroma-saturated air, a pungent blend of camphor and garlic. She exhaled, tasting the herbs at the back of her tongue. "What could be more difficult than getting past a dragon?"

"There are forces in our world that dwarf the power of dragons. I have foreseen much that you don't know."

As cool, damp air chiseled away at the fire's rising warmth, Naamah scooted toward her sister, overlapping the fringes of their silky black dresses on the flat stone. Barefoot and shivering in the draft, she wrapped her arms around herself. "Didn't you know it would be this cold? We should have worn our cloaks."

"It is only temporary. The cold air is a path that leads us to the garden." Lilith pushed her long black hair off her shoulder and huddled close, her voice low. "Naamah, you must have more faith in me. My husband's arts have allowed me to see another world, the world of phantasmal knowledge. It is the realm of future possibilities, where I can see what might happen."

Naamah folded her hands. "What might happen?"

The bushes rustled just outside the entrance. Lilith glanced over her shoulder, her lips pressing into two pale lines as she set the cup of herbs on the cave's floor and drew a dagger from a sheath on her belt.

To read the rest of the excerpt, click here Eye of the Oracle

Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 609 pages
Publisher: AMG Publishers (September 25, 2006)
Language: English
ISBN: 0899578705

posted by Rachelle
at 10:46 PM