Shopping Bargains and Disasters

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The last week of May and the first week of June are major shopping sprees because of school opening. Some of my shopping turned into useless expenses or “things that could have waited”.

Let me start with shopping bargains:

1. Shopping at 168 Mall at Sta. Elena, Divisoria

Imelda marcosThe last time I was in 168 Mall was last December 29, 2005 where I saw the former first Lady, Imelda Marcos with her bodyguards. I took a cellphone photo of her surrounded by avid onlookers. Hmm, she used to close down Tiffany’s in New York during her reigning days. She didn’t close 168 Mall just for her this time. Apparently, she toured the place, waved her hands as admirers called out her name . Charming as ever.

168 mall168 mall
It seems most of the shoppers moved to SM Mall of Asia. 168 Mall is not as crowded as it used to be. The girls wanted to shop there because of trendy outfits only found in that mall. They didn’t want to spend money at the brand name boutiques if the style is too trendy. Fashionable tops from Korea or Hongkong used to cost 200 pesos ($3.80) or less and are now 300 pesos ($5.76). Still a bargain and the tops are unique, says the girls. Sure, one can also buy the same value at the [tag]SM Mall of Asia[/tag] department store but you might bump into someone wearing the same item. The dotted shoes cost around $4.00 only. Workmanship is not of high quality but it served as an accent to the all white suit that my daughter would be wearing to a friend’s debut.

2. A customized desktop from PC Express Katipunan

computerthumb.jpgMy daughter wanted a laptop but I explained that since she commutes by jeepney to the UP Campus, her laptop could easily be stolen or worse she could be held up. She settled for a brand new desktop. I bought the whole caboodle for 48,000 pesos ($923) which includes a Pentium D 820, 1 gigabyte memory, the usual accessories , Epson Printer/scanner/copier and a licensed copy of Windows XP Pro pack 2. The latter cost 8,400 pesos ($161). Without the licensed Windows, the desktop is just 40,000 pesos. I don’t understand why the windows platform is expensive. If it were more affordable, I bet pirated copies at flea markets will be a thing of the past. My girls are so used to their techie-mom fixing computers but this time I stayed firm. I will just guide you but you will have to set it up at your dorm. Wow, that machine is super fast. I feel my Pentium 4 is now a dinosaur.

Now the shopping disaster for the week:

1. Preparing for Boracay

boracay.jpgMy dear hubby booked at the best hotel accomodations in the Boracay. It’s been 6 years since we last vacationed at the beach. Lovely, I thought. The last memory I have of my son at the beach front was ” Mom I wish you could swim with me here“. Since I was such an overweight blob of human flesh, I was too ashamed to wear a swimsuit. In honor of my son, I wanted to appear at the beach in full resort wear galore. Fitting resort outfits was such an ego boost. I loved how I looked so divinely sexy in backless tops and shorts. I ended up buying 5 outfits for our planned Boracay vacation. I will surprise my husband. I thought!

That night, Butch broke the news that he wasn’t able to get plane tickets. Oh yeah, how could the tickets have not been booked weeks ahead? ARGH! What happens to the 5 resort wear I just bought? I tried not to be disappointed so I ended up saying “don’t be surprised if I convert our house to beach resort“. Oh yes, I plan to wear my resort outfits as my house dress for the next few weeks.

2. My new Canon Powershot A530

canon_powerhot_a540_lg.gifThinking we were going to the beach, I bought a Canon Powershot A530 Digital Camera. The Canon Ixus 430 which I shared with my lovely daughter, Lauren drowned at the San Francisco Aquarium as she leaned over to watch the fishes. Haaay. Such a nice camera. Oh well, she’s paying the price now of not owning a digital camera. I got attracted to the affordable price of the Canon Powershot A530. Looking at the bright side of my purchase, maybe I can take more photos and convert it to income. The google adsense income of a shared photo gallery hit a spike due to the SM Mall of Asia photo gallery. The income might even pay for this camera.

These may seem as shopping disasters at first but it’s not totally wasted. Even if the Boracay trip is not pushing through this long weekend, we’ve rebooked it for a later date. I was just too eager to commune with the beach once again.

Noemi Lardizabal-Dado (1388 Posts)

You may contact Noemi (noemidado @ for speaking and consultancy services in the following areas: Parenting in the Digital Age (includes pro-active parenting on cyber-bullying and bullying) ; Social Business ; Reinventing One’s Life; and social media engagement. Our parenting workshop is called "Prep to Prime (P2P): Parenting in the Digital Age (An Un­Workshop)" P2P Un­Workshops are conducted by two golden women in their prime, Noemi and Jane, who have a century’s worth of experience between them. They are both accomplished professionals who chose to become homemakers. This 180­degree turn also put them on a different life course which includes blogging, social media engagement and citizen advocacy. They call their un­workshops Prep to Prime or P2P, for short, to emphasize the breadth of their parenting experience. They tackle different aspects and issues of parenting ­­ from managing pregnancies, prepping for the school years of children, dealing with househelp, managing the household budget, to maximizing one’s prime life and staying healthy through the senior years.

  • I like your new camera. I wonder how much is it? And oh, I’ve been meaning to go to 168 Mall again since it reopened. The shoes in the pic look funky. Have fun in Boracay Noemi:)

  • Yeah that shoes rocks. Nice camera too. Enjoy the beach. Better late than never.

  • I have the Canon PowerShot A520. It’s a good camera.

  • Ajay: The price is not bad at all. It cost 13,500 at Electroworld and it came with a free 256 MB memory card and case. However, I had to buy rechargeable batteries/travel pack for 1,500 pesos because Canon packed it with alkaline batteries. I think alkaline batteries are pretty convenient if one forgets to charge the batteries. I wanted the Powershot A620 which is 7.1 megapixels but it costs more at 24,950. They even have a ZERO interest plan for credit cards. I don’t regret buying it though.

    To compare:

    Powershot A430- 4 megapixels is 11,950
    Powershot A 530- 5 megapixels is 13,500
    Powershot A540- 6 megapixels is 17,500
    Powershot A700- 6 megapixels is 19,950
    Powershot A620- 7 megapixels is 24,950

    I can’t wait for the beach. It’s been years!

  • Dexie: I hope I can get a little sun especially since the rainy season is coming.

    niceheart: I agree. Canon is the best camera. My daughter has SONY cybershot. I was hoping for the ixus because of it’s sleek compact look but then I just had so many expenses.

  • Toe

    That 168 Mall looks interesting. I’ve never been there. I’ll put it in my to-go-to list when I go home to the Philippines. Wow… you’re a cool mom fixing computers! 🙂

  • Toe: 168 Mall is a must visit. It used to be the “in-thing” before the BIR raided the mall. I think there are still good buys there. I don’t exactly fix computers but I know how to set it up.

  • lemon

    good for you and hubby,noemi,you should never give up going to the’s one of the places where i feel utmost freedom and bliss, but my husband is not fond of the sea, the way, i love love the shoes!could you pls. give a review of the canon 530?i’m planning to get a digicam soon, thanks

  • lemon

    another thing, i giggled when i read that you bought a lot of things to wear to the beach. i always do that then the trip would get cancelled and i would get so frustrated

  • Lemon: Yes I will make a review of the Canon Powershot A530 as soon as I get more photos.

  • Dear Noemi,
    I included you in my links and also wrote a brief article about you today June 10. Keep in touch always. By the way, where is Gigi Alino now and also Pachot(is she pachot? cant remember some of the names of your Sampaguita Cebuana dormates)

    Betty Tenmatay Lopez

  • Betty: I read your blog everyday. I want to comment but you don’t have a comment box. Gigi and I keep in touch. I even slept over at her condo one time. Ipyot (Fe Briones) , not sure where she is now . I will ask Gigi. Yes let’s keep in touch.

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    Noemi, how has your camera been working since you bought it?