This blog was brought about by one and ONLY one thing - BAGGAGE ALLOWANCE.

Join my journey as a young housewife in another country armed only with limited articles of clothing and a good sense of practicality against the ever-changing four seasons. My personal challenge is to survive a year with just the things I came with. Emergency clothes purchases should not go above $10.

Help me by following my blog and holding me accountable on this self-imposed challenge.

Timer starts now!


Food on my mind

This photo was taken a month ago when my cravings were so crazy. That day I was imagining eating a thick, juicy hamburger with melted cheese, bacon and tomatoes.

Autumn afternoon

I though I was just getting the pre-menstrual bloated feeling because I noticed that day I can hardly close my belt (which was low-waist), I did not know that I was already growing a baby then! Hehehe

Suddenly everything seems appealing and edible! I never thought I could eat so much, it would put all carpenters to shame! =))

Taken 4 days ago. Still not showing.

Lately, I've been leaning towards comfortable clothing. Mainly because I am too lazy to dress up (I get dizzy easily) and it's too cold now to be wearing dresses.

See you soon! =)


Sunny Thoughts

It feels like I am here

Igloo. Image courtesy of the internet.

When I would rather be here

Boracay, November 2009

With the hubby

Walking the world-famous Boracay sands

Sipping on this

Jonah's Mango Shake

Eating this

Villaluna's: Drooling over my mom's spaghetti, fried chucks and chocolate cake =( I wish I can taste and eat them NOW!

and that

Samson's: Sushi platter, Palabok and Puto bumbong!

A blessed Holy Week everyone!


Into the woods

What to do with  a skirt that I only use inside the house, a so-so sweater and a men's tuxedo shirt? You layer them all up! It looks preppy, practical and has the warmth factor. Just make sure your tights are not footless and has the thickness of at least 100 (you can buy this at your local grocery or department store)


 The yellow sweater actually has a pink sister, but today I decided to wear yellow. Pink on midnight blue might make the outfit dark. In my opinion (disclaimer: not necessarily an expert one) yellow makes a perfect contrast on anything that has a strong blue-base.

Yellow sweater from Surplus Shop, Jean and Rosz necklace, Sunnies from Rubi

The shirt is really a men's tuxedo shirt complete with pleats, button-down collar and french cuffs (the cuffs can be folded back and fastened with links).  This shirt was thrifted (as usual, hello!) from a girlfriend doing a garage sale (first dibs!) so my husband need not to worry.

I got the skirt from SM's Children's Wear Department a year ago. Obviously, the shoes is becoming my favorite. I bought it in Manila from a shop called Shoebox in Rockwell (and I also think they have a kiosk in Greenhills), their shoes are stylish, comfortable and most importantly- affordable.

Actual photo of the sky, no edits.

I could not resist taking a picture of the autumn sky (at 7:30pm). It was magnificent! It looked menacing and lovely at the same time. Terrible and beautiful, light and dark all creating a picturesque scene which left me struck.


Walk in the Light

 Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you,
   who walk in the light of your presence, LORD. 

                                                                                                             - Psalm 89:15

I was reminded of this passage when I saw this photo. It was because the shot was perfectly taken just as I walked into the light (kudos to my husband for being photographer of the day!) which gave me that glow =) Don't you just love it how a situation or a thing glows in perspective when you shine a light on it?

 Lately, God has been showing me that that are no roads too dark, nor paths too hazy for His light to shine on. All things get clearer when you ask Him in prayer to see it through His eyes.

Red and blue stripped dress from SM Teens department, Shoes by Shoebox.

Have a blessed Lenten Season everyone =) I am sorry that I wasn't able to post as much lately because of schedule. I should have a more regular posting sched in the next two weeks =)


The Hill

My husband and I were curious about this particular lump of land on the side of a major highway. My sister-in-law pointed it to us one time when we were going home. It looked like a lonesome Chocolate Hill.

We decided to go there and see for ourselves what it looks like. When I got on top the view was like a country shot straight from the movies! There was a fence along the perimeter and a house with a barn. In between were cows and a tractor. It was so "in-uma style" (Uma is Ilonggo for farm), which I really missed =)

Although the sun was out, it still felt chilly. Thanks to Candy for lending me her camel/brown cardigan. It has tassels which, in my opinion, were a perfect compliment to the scenery! I had problems in the past wearing this slip dress because it seemed too bland and kept falling off my shoulder. Today I discovered that it is best worn with a belt (and hiked a bit). I paired it with my wedding shoes (camel peep toe) because it gives the illusion of long legs (any shoes close to skin color will have this effect).

Accessorized with my DIY necklace. The pendants change colors under the light, the teardrop shape reminds me of mussels (tahong).

Have a good week ahead! 


Summer state of mind

Yesterday I woke up at 6am (to prepare hubby's breakfast) and noticed that the sky was still dark. This signals the end of summer and the onset of autumn. I was quite sad to see summer go=( This morning and up until afternoon, it just rained.

So today I decided to do a tribute for summer.

I used the same maxi dress during my preps for our wedding, so this has got to be one of the few dresses that I will never forget (aside from the fact that it was only $5! What a bargain!) Since Canberra has very erratic weather (you can have all 4 seasons in a day!), it is only but practical that I learn how to layer my clothes.

I topped the halter maxi dress with a knitted black cardigan which was ukay-bought (P50). The details on the cardi reminds me of the "bola-bola" (sticky/glutinous balls)  in Ginataan. Isn't it cute? Like you have to resist the urge to pluck them out or something.

Summer my friend, most of the time you had been harsh but I will surely miss and long for you especially when winter sets in. Until next time...


Indiana Jones

A few nights ago, Allen and I had an Indiana Jones marathon for his school project. Ergo, the look today:

I felt working for the Australian Zoo because I ended up looking like Terri Irwin or one their staff there =) Nonetheless, this was an easy get-up,  thanks to the monochromatic tone. Just grab everything that has the same shade/color in your closet and off you go! (I literally grabbed these because my boss called me to cover the day for him- when I got to the shop, he asked why I was still wearing my slippers. Grabe, slippers na ba to sa kanila?!? Sa'tin kasi boots to eh! =))

The polo shirt was a thrift find from Bambang during my college days. It was all worth the trip because I only got it for about P30 (less than $1) and I've been using it for a decade already. Although the fabric has been thinning out, it gives the polo a fake "sheer" look which you can wear during summer (despite the sleeves).  One thing I also love about it is the gold and silvery thread woven on the fabric, which from a certain angle (under a light or sun) gives the top a"shiny, shimmery, splendid!" look!

Complete the outfit with Jean and Rosz animal necklace. When I bought this necklace I thought that the use would be limited because, well, it's kind of hard to imagine having an elephant hanging in your neck like you are part of a tribal council.  But surprise, surprise! Since animal-anythings are trending these days (leopard/cheetah prints, insect rings, meat couture by Lady Gaga, Lady Gaga as an egg, Lady Gaga as a rhino [her anatomical prosthetics at the Grammy's- read the article at Jean and Rosz site] Animal liberation/PETA, etc!), you can pair this with whatever you can think of! (I once wore this to a job interview). I also wore the multilayer wooden bead bracelet to have a cohesive rustic look.

As an accent, I used my orange clip-on garter belt (bought from a bazaar) to add a bit of color to a dangerously-boring-outfit-if-you-are-not-careful-with-what-you-pile-on!

Later , I will change to my flip-flops when it gets warmer =)

Mukha mow!  =)


Thanks for the feature Jean and Rosz

Jean and Rosz made a feature of Thrift.Trip.Fashion at their blog yesterday. I must say I am very honored. When I came here in Oz, I had to bring only the most essential, classic and basic accessories with me (Baggage Allowance hey!). Apart from my DIY accessories, Jean and Rosz found a space in my luggage =)

Their accessories are modern with a classic twist, very wearable and can be matched with almost anything your imagination, gumption and creativity can take you.

Read the article here

TTF's feature at Jean and Rosz


I love Salvos

Back when I was in Manila, not a month would pass by without me having a trip to an Ukay-Ukay spot with my girlfriends. You'd be surprised with what you'll find there (but I will do a separate post for that).

When I got here though, I do not know how to get my Ukay fix! I am so itching to go to an Ukay (or something similar) to get ready for winter! (Winter wear is just too much for my wallet right now).

Thank God they have a place here called SALVOS (short for Salvation Army or Ukay Spot for me!)

I found this amazing emerald green wool jacket.

It reminds me of Jackie-O! The cut is so like her! Classic and Clean silhouette!

Bag from Susana (I think this is from Bayo or Divisoria); Charles and Keith Camel Booties and Zara Jeans

For only $20 I have a well-rounded coat/ trench. A brand new of this baby would probably retail for $50-85. This definitely is a good buy!

Wear it buttoned with a sweet dress and tights inside and you are ready for an English tea! Pair it with your jeans and killer boots and off you go to paint the night red!


DIY Shirt

This is one of my favorite shirts, because apart from versatility and design, it has sentimental value. The shirt was a Christmas gift by one of my girl bestfriends- Sharbs.

I remember how we were scouring Divisoria for our DIY Birdcage headbands when she saw the iron-on gems. She bought a tank top and voila! A very unique shirt created out of love and imagination =)

This shirt can go with anything, but today I decided to pair it with my high-waist pants for a chic look.  To break the monotony of black I wore my husband's gold watch (resized for me), white bangles and cocktail rings (some of which are gifted by, yep you guessed it, Jean and Rosz)

I also chose a Charles and Keith Yellow and Black strappy heels to have a splash of color at the bottom of the ensemble.

We're going later to the Canberra Show, so I'll probably change into my ballet flats for all the walking =)


As long as you're feeling Boho and not Baho =p

I just felt like being light and not too fussy today so I decided on slipping in my tube dress, a few bangles, scarf and slippers.

Why you should wear a dress:
1) You can eat all you want without undoing your buttons
2) You can go pee-pee without going through the hassle of unzipping, pulling down and zipping up again
3) It's airy on places that the sun doesn't shine on!

Tie dyed scarf gifted by an officemate; Jean and Rosz necklace

Pile 'em all up I say! Don't be scared!

Hello Shorty!

I've been sporting short hair ever since I was 16. The only time I grew it long was for my wedding (which was just this year!)- and "long" meant a safe one-length cut. I think my hair got "tampo" because prior to my cut when I was 16, my mane was up until my waist! (I know, I couldn't believe it myself! I'll look for photos from my mom to prove it!) So anyhoo, because of my hair's slow growth, I abstained from scissors for almost 8 months! I realized that if you have longer hair, conditioner should be part of your budget. I always thought my hair was thin because comparing it with my mom's, mine looked malnourished. Two stylist already told me that although my hair looks only a handful (therefore thin), it actually is healthy and thick strand-wise.

Erm, this is long hair for me

So you can only imagine what pure joy I felt when I finally had time to chop my hair off. As you know, hair services anywhere in the world (outside Manila) is expensive (by my standard =)), it took me a while to look for the most affordable hair salon around Canberra. Considering the language barrier (it's so hard to explain a particular cut when you can't use "ek-ek", "chenes" or "kembers" in a sentence), I had to research for photos of the haircut that I want (luckily, Jean and Rosz had an article about Ultra Short Cuts which you can read here).

Ashlee Simpson

Off I went to Just Cuts, Jenene was to be my stylist, I showed her the photo and told her that I want to tweak the look a bit by having no fringes at the back (it irritates me when it grows out because it looks like a chicken's ass), no blunt bangs (because my face is big as it is thank you very much), just a smooth side sweep that can be tucked easily in the ears (on days that you don't want to be blinded by your own hair). I was praying the whole time she was cutting (trust issues- I am so biased with Pinoy hairstylist because they are simply world-class), that she won't murder my hair and that she understood me clearly. Thank God, Jenene did not disappoint. I learned that communication was the key. You have to build rapport with the stylist, making sure you get your point across and the stylist in turn should know how to listen and consult. Jenene kept asking me as we go along if I am okay with the length before cutting more off.

Hey shorty!

All in all, I was happy because: 1)  I got the look I wanted at the price I can afford;  2) Wash and wear management and  3)No more CONDITIONER on the grocery list!

Perfect Red

Every woman, at one point in their life has been searching for the Perfect Red. It takes a lot of time to try to find the red lipstick that suits you. There are so many factors to consider before pouting for that stick if you don't want to be a walking clown. Skin tone, hair color and season are among them. I also used to think that red lipsticks are, well, just RED! I was wrong, a red lipstick has many undertones- yellow or orange based, purple, tawny,blue and even pink!

Here's a helpful article I found on the net to help you pick out your Perfect Red:


I found mine when I visited the local pharmacy 2 days ago =)

Rimmel's Red Fever


Where the wild things are

To tell you honestly I am not a big fan of mixing print on print. But today, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and be a little adventurous.

I paired the batik black and white printed jumpsuit (or onesies as I would call it- very similar to what infants wear) with black-plum-and-gray cardigan, both from Tightrope (each costs $3-$5 only!)

It turned out quite well. I topped the whole look with Harlow-inspired necklace from Jean and Rosz-- who by the way has a very strong ang cohesive collection without bleeding your wallet dry (check out their blog,

And to soften the whole look a bit, a studded-lavender sandals from Mario D' Boro (SM):