This is Dawn's personal blog. The blog name Orchids in Formaldehyde hints of sweetness and darkness in her views. A paradox of perspective that is sometimes confusingly unpredictable.

Eden Nature Park and Resort

How pretty is Eden Nature Park, right? I really enjoyed strolling through the paths and trails and stopping by beautiful spots to soak up on all the feels. I wish I had more time to enjoy it. There were more trails that we didn't go on and more spots I wish I could have seen.

Most ideal to me is having the time to actually stick around and just meditate on life (as if I don't have enough time for that on my bed hehe). Or sit on a bench or steps or the roadside maybe and read a book or something? A picnic would also be nice.

Definitely a wondrous place.

The Flower Gardens

The path leading back from the flower gardens.

Among the trees

The Amphitheater

The path in the Butterfly Sanctuary

The Day Tour Center and the shuttle for the Guided Shuttle Tour
We opted out of this because not only does it costs an additional P120 per head, we also wanted some solitude.

Deer Park

The Not-Exactly-Entrance Sign

Entrance to Amphitheater

Statue welcoming us to the Fishing Village

The Gazebo from afar

Step, Tae!!!
Playing the Filipino version of hopscotch

The Holiday Terraces

The Holiday Terraces from afar

The Gazebo

Mountain Villa 1

Mountain Villa 2

I'm surprised to see a dog and chicken at this "native-ity" scene.

The Prayer Garden

The road from the gardens

Ninomiya Kinjiro moment?

A somewhat secret entrance to the Aviary

The Vista Cottages

Leading down to the Vista Restaurant

Vista Resto from afar
'Twas a gloomy moment around lunch when the clouds were heavy and the fog started creeping in.

Path from the Vista Resto to the Day Tour Center

Vista Resto up close

White horse outside the Butterfly Sanctuary

But maybe not for people who hates the outdoors. ;)

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Invitation and Souvenir Designs for Davin's Birthday

Davin's first birthday is coming up and we've been tasked by our sister to plan, prep and decorate the party. Among the tasks that fell into my lap are the designs for invitation and souvenirs.

The theme will be baby animals with the color scheme of green, yellow and orange.

This is the approved invitation design. This is only to be distributed on Facebook, although she hasn't posted this yet despite me having finished this a week ago.

I've made another design with a more pastel look, but they liked this one better.
For the souvenirs, preferably mugs or magnet, this is the design we went with. Although when they have decided to have mugs done after finding a supplier that fit their budget, I have to redo the design because the supplier said that a longer design is more preferable so as to utilize most of the printable space.

So this is how it turned out after editing. I've gotten rid of the duck and placed a picture of the celebrant instead. I kept the other animals in similar colors so as not to overwhelm the already colorful design.

Anyway, the mugs will be available for pickup this afternoon and I'm quite curious how that will turn out.

I will keep you posted. ;)

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I Loved You At Your Darkest

For those episodes of depression and social anxiety, and whatever dark episodes we are going through, it's lovely to remember this line from the bible. :)

We all go through some tough times. I think it's gotten overrated - the idea of constant happiness and good vibes.

If there aren't people who notice the mistakes, or what's wrong in the society, how is it ever going to change?

Is it not at the time of the renaissance when people started questioning about everything - what they believe, what they see, what they perceive? Have our scientists and mathematicians decided only to pick flowers and enjoy their moments in the sun or beach, do you think our days would have been very different to theirs?

If you think something is wrong in our society, don't turn a blind eye and pretend that it doesn't exist just because you don't want to be bothered with the negative vibes.

I once commented on an instagram "ad" that the photo was copyright infringed (not my exact words, but the online boutique is using photos of someone else's account to sell stuff that looked similar). Well, the account that posted the ad blocked me, saying prior to that that she doesn't want bad vibes on her account.

Well, thanks. I guess I'm the bad guy in that situation? Because I was the one who brought the negative vibes to her?

Let's just condone copyright infringement then, just to make you happy.

Anyway, I've gotten off course.

But then, what else is left to say?

Depression? Those moments when you think your life won't amount to much.

Social anxiety? The knotted stomach feeling when you interact with people because of foot-in-mouth disease, which usually happens 75% of the times you interact with people.

I Loved You At Your Darkest

I don't know what it means to others, but what's resonating with me is the fact that He expects us to have our darkest moments. It's normal to not be happy all the time.

When you lost a game, it's okay to feel like --- you lost a game. You don't have to fake a smile so people will think you're not a sour loser. :) This is specially true if you really worked hard to win and then you lost.

Bottled up anger will always find a way out. But not bottled up sadness.

I used to channel it all in a Nicholas Sparks' book. Reminds me, I haven't read one in a long time. Hmm.

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Save The Date

Not that I'm inviting all of you. I just wanna show off this save the date card I made. I enjoyed doing this so much. Much more than planning for the wedding. :)

Talking to people gives me anxiety. Social anxiety, I guess that's what it's called, and it's a real thing. Anyway, because of this anxiety, I can't enjoy the process of planning an event because it entails talking to different suppliers. I guess being in the art/graphics/architecture/freelancing business suits me in a sense that I can hide in my room and do the stuff that I enjoy doing. Like this card.

We'll hire a planner for the wedding. We are in the process of talking with one and hopefully a deal will be struck so we can start with the planning of the wedding. I know I still need to talk to her (regarding my social anxiety) but I'll only have to talk to only her, and she'll talk to the others for me. :)

I'll discuss more about hiring a planner later. Back to the card. The card announces the important information of date and place which is necessary to disseminate to people because the venue will be some kind of a "destination wedding" venue. Since we have decided (I made a post about it) that the wedding will be held in Davao, most of our guests in Zamboanga will have to travel to be able to attend.

Thus letting them know early is essential so they can prepare for the day/trip.

Colors of the card and the color scheme of the event are powder blue and lavender because they are Caye and my favorite colors respectively. :) It's a good thing they look nice together.

PS. I haven't sent a card to everyone on the list yet so don't sweat if you haven't received one. :)

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Hilaiza's Pastry Shop

Ever since we've moved here in Panabo City, we have only been to Gaisano or the market to buy our necessities. Gaisano Mall lacked in food establishments that isn't a booth or stall. The surrounding areas between the mall, market, terminal and home was still pretty rural so there wasn't really any place that stood out so much to us. We were keeping an eye out for places we could hang out in and chat and enjoy delicious food.

It's a good thing that my sister has to plan a birthday party for her son, so we searched online for cake shops in the city. And that's how we discovered Hilaiza's Pastry Shop.

It's a little out of our way, because we usually turn at the crossing where going straight ahead would lead us here.

We initially ordered cakes, because let's face it, CAKES! It was also the main purpose we visited the place, so we could taste what they have to offer before my sis decides to order a cake for Davin's birthday.

Blueberry cheesecake

Cookies and Cream cheesecake

While in the process of eating cake, my sis asked us if we wanted to order more stuff. Haha. Appetite peaked!

And so we ordered a pizza and a serving of fries. The pizza flavor was Quattro Formaggi or 4 cheeses, and it was delicious. The fries didn't seem like the frozen fries variety and it didn't have artificial flavoring which we liked. Of all the food I've tasted I really loved the pizza. I'm still craving for it now, the day after we visited the place.

The drinks were delicious as well. I ordered a latte while my two sisters ordered apple and mango tumble respectively, and my niece ordered lemon grass lemonade which she didn't like but I did. :)

The place is cozy and decorated nicely. The only thing I could think of which I didn't like from the place is the low setting air conditioning. It was a little warm in there.

The prices are a bit above average, but nothing too expensive either. The cakes were at P85 per slice. The drinks were the same except for the lemonade which was at P55. The fries were P65 and the pizza P395.

We went home very full. If you divide our expenses into 4, we'd have each person pay P260+ each. Not bad really.

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