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Yeah and that merits a post lol. Funny how a small change can make a big difference! I was getting bored with my previous layout, thinking my fonts look too sharp they're breaking. Then I chanced upon a nice looking blogger theme and got my font from there. In fairness, I love it! Playfair Display is a free font from Google and it looks soooooo nice. Specially the ampersand! So yeah, I replaced all header fonts with Playfair Display and went back to Lora for the body font. <3

Anyway.

It's 4:30am and I'm slacking off again!

I tried the pomodoro technique earlier, you know, 25mins pure work then 5min break and HOLEY MOLEY HOW IS IT SO EFFECTIVE?! I've listed 5 tasks for the day and when the timer ended I'm done with 3.

Now I'm back to procrastinating.

Honestly, I'm becoming more and more interested in make-up lately. My stack is still pretty basic though, but for someone who's not a beauty enthusiast I'm surprised quite a lot of trends caught me this year!

Here's 5 of the top beauty trends owning the internet this 2017:

Photo from Unsplash
1. "No-makeup" makeup
Nude's still in. Girls want to look as bare as possible by putting as much as possible on their faces. Guilty as charged here! Neutral palettes and flesh-toned lipsticks are still so popular today, and for good reason. Nude makeup gives you a fresh and glowing finish that looks natural. Like you didn't even try (even if you sat two hours at the vanity). Don't we all want to look effortlessly beautiful?  No wonder Urban Decay's NAKED palette is such a huge success.

2. Bright and daring makeup
As much as nude makeup is in, this year is also the year where wild and extreme colors rose to popularity. Glittery lip gloss and neon eyeshadows, despite what people think, is more of a statement than a preference. Take California based Lime Crime Cosmetics, a line of vegan and cruelty-free makeup. Its creator, Doe Deere, takes pride in producing high quality and highly pigmented makeup fit for everyone who takes self-expression unapologetically.

3. Microbladed brows
Or at least, full looking and defined brows. Gone were the days when thin arched brows were lit. Right now, people are investing in all sorts of products to achieve more natural-looking brows. Even brow products are evolving. There are feather brow pens, 3-in-1 sculpting pencils, and even brow fibers now, can you believe it?

Microbladed brows, however, offer a more permanent and natural-looking solution so those who want to stick to this trend - which I presume will stay for another three years or so. It's a type of cosmetic tatooing involving an ultra thin and wispy blade that certified specialists use to manually draw hair on your skin. You know what, I'm actually saving up for this. 

4. Unique makeup brushes
Because regular makeup brushes are so effective, somebody decided it's time to reinvent them for more profit.  Beauty blenders, silicon sponges, paddle brushes are all the hype this year. I'm 110% skeptic at first, but in fairness, they're all the rave online. So I had to try them right? I personally have a beauty blender and I don't use it anymore haha. I have a couple of paddle brushes too and can I just say that they're cute and fluffy and feels super good on the skin. Other than that I'm good with my regular brush set! Haha

5. Excessive contouring
Not the most well-received trend, but still a very popular one at that. It's a complicated trick that's originally made for red carpet celebrities because it was meant for HD cameras and harsh lighting. How it suddenly gained mainstream popularity, I have no idea. Now, a highlighter, a contour powder, and tons of concealer are part of every girl's make-up kit, and Instagram has become their version of a red carpet.

Out of the 5 I didn't get particularly obsessed with bright makeup and contouring -- mostly because 1) contouring is hard and 2) I'm not too confident about sparkly things on my face! But for the rest, I was so in. I told you, I have paddle brushes and a beauty blender. I'm getting my brows microbladed one day. And the no-makeup makeup look is my daily game.

What beauty trends are you following this year?

// I've been feeling sick for weeks. Reason why I'm not in the mood to do anything lately. I was supposed to go to the city hall for my NBI clearance but had to delay 'cos my bed kinda hostaged me today. That and I was wheezing like crazy too.

// My sister and I finished doing my DIY kraft envelopes this weekend. IT WAS SO FUN. You know, smelling paper, cutting, folding, piling, AAAAARGH. I'm not really that crafty but I'm having fun doing simple tasks like this kahit paulit ulit. It's satisfying, the feeling of mastery. Our backs hurt a lot after that 'cos we were hunched on the floor the entire time but okay lang ang saya parin. Also doubles as bonding time with my sister too. I try not to think about it but I feel sad every time I think that in two months, we'll be seeing less of each other na. Aargh. Even my parents. My mom gets emotional whenever I talk about how Jeckie and I are looking for a place to live in after the wedding. It gets me too huhu. :(

// I thought transitioning out of my current job is gonna be easy peasy. HINDI PALA. Jusko all the documentation I have to turn over. 

// Despite feeling a bit sick, I feel like things are turning out good. Jeckie just started in his new job today! I'm not getting a lot of writing assignments lately but alam mo yung bigla na lang may darating na pera? I had to borrow the money I set aside for the car's amortization to pay for my credit card, so sabi ko Loooord help, I'm broke! In the next days I got a message from one of my recent clients, saying -- she would like to buy one of the first revisions I did for her logo 'cos she felt it embodies her company more. Ako naman, suuuuuure. But deep inside I was racking my mind if I already deleted that file 'cos that was like an ancient revision. I made seven variations for her and it's funny we're going back to the very first logo din pala. HAHA. Anyway, the point is ANSWERED PRAYER WOOOH THANK YOU LOOOORD!

// Wedding wise. Uhm. We changed photographers HAHAHA. And hired a prenup stylist too. Yey. Looking forward to it. :) Yun muna!
Gist: I got a new job!

Putting this in draft for now because I don't want to jinx it!

Source: theenterprisecenter.com.ph
It's June 7 as of writing, and I can't, ano ba, hindi ako mapakali hahaha. I've been actively searching for a new job, one that pays double at least, and is in line with my current experience. I had a couple of prospects from Jobstreet, but some of them had major drawbacks - night shift, located in the south, OT/overtime hazards... so nope.

But there was one, one very intriguing post that I know is out of my league, but is probably the most rewarding of all. The offer, according to Jobstreet, is aboooove my expected salary (frkn 6 digits man). It's located along Ayala Ave., which is far haha, but it's fine 'cos we're moving in the area sometime in the future. The catch? The post is for a senior position with 8+ years of experience. HAHA. Looking at my resume, the only fighting chance I have is my 2 years experience in one of their non-negotiable requirements. My back-ups: my software development background, leadership and training experience, and my onsite exposure. Also my college latin honors but I'm not sure if they still count as I'm getting older in the industry haha. Total years of experience: 5. Long shot, but I still applied.

But what have you, they called a few days after I submitted my application online! So here's quite a timeline:

May 26 - applied online through their Jobstreet/LinkedIn posting

May 30 - phone interview with the HR. It was supposed to be around 7pm but got moved to 9pm. I agreed, even though it means I could be answering the call at the office (which I'm avoiding), but thank God 'cos just as I was about to finish parking, the call came. So yeah, perfect location. I enjoyed this call. I kept hearing the word "interesting" from the HR as I was explaining my duties and obligations, and discussing the points in my resume. I was hoping it's a good thing. I was told that even though I didn't have the required 3-5 years experience in Performance Testing, my development background kinda makes up for it. Plus points that I was client-facing and was sent to the US for a while. The HR discussed a couple of their company benefits as well. HMO (extended to 2 dependents. YAS), de minimis, 13th month pay, performance bonus, annual increase, 15 VLs and 15 SLs (are you kidding me huhu), etc. I wanted to cry LOL. Then I disclosed my current rate, which turned out to be laughable considering the work I do. So yeah, I laughed too. We wrapped up and she told me she'll forward my application to the hiring manager, then I was invited for a technical interview the following day. I heard her say "I'm so happy I found you". Damn, I'm happy too!

May 31 - Technical interview with their QA manager. I answered an HR assessment exam first, an animated simulation exam about customer service and multitasking. It was fun and engaging haha. Then I went on to the actual technical interview. I thought I was gonna have to do some scripting, thank God wala naman. We talked mostly about the processes we do, my experience in certain protocols, the level of feedback and analysis I provide to each project. I was able to answer everything. But I know I don't have much experience in analysis, I do mostly the dirty work (scripting and support). Shortly after the interview, the HR fetched me again and congratulated me for passing the technical interview. I was so relieved. She mentioned that I was one of their strongest candidates. I went home really excited.

June 5 - The next week I was finally scheduled for the last leg of interviews. One with their IT head in Manila, and another with their stakeholder in New York via web conference. In reality, I had 3 interviews that day. First with their QA team (with future teammates, if ever), next with their GTS head (basically head of IT in Manila), and finally with the director of business applications and shared services in New York. After all those interviews I realized how badly I want to land the job. The company seems great. The leaders are admirable. The scope of work is exciting. I'm gonna learn a lot and still be able to practice my expertise. Everyone seems professional and fun at the same time. And they give their employees iPhones hahaha. The HR went back to me after all the interviews are over and told me she'll get back with me with the results in about a week. She told me I deserve it. I hope she's right.

I hope I'm not expecting too much. I really want to get an offer. I'm ready to resign. But of course I just had to dwell in paranoia for a while. What I'm afraid of:
- That the position was taken by someone who can start earlier (happened to me 3 years ago). They did tell me it was an urgent position. I told the HR we actually have to give 2 months notice before leaving (sucks, right), but 30 days notice can also be pulled off.
- That it was taken by one of my current teammates HAHA. It's no secret we're all looking out. I'm generally open about the opportunities I see online, even sharing those I think are worth the shot. It would be devastating to learn we're vying for the same spot. And that I lost.
- Someone better came along. *cries*

Right now I'm trying to condition myself with the worst that could happen. I'm really just afraid my my teammates would leave and turnover all their work to me! AAARGH. That's gonna be crazy. I don't want to inherit any of their work HAHA. It's too much. I'm already dealing with so much on my own. Argh.

If only there are other opportunities out there for my line of work.

Jeckie said God will give it to me if He knows I'll be happy even if I don't get it. It's all about accepting God's plan and not sulking about things when they don't go my way. Pretty saddening, and enlightening too. It's true that there's not much to lose on my part, I still have a job no matter what. But the buildup of the possible offer is making me really expectant, and it would terribly hurt to lose this opportunity. I want to believe that it's okay to lose this, but I don't know. I want it. Jeckie and I needs it. It's a great leap from where I am today.

June 8 - right now I'm thinking if they're stalling my job offer because a competition came along. I checked their Jobstreet listing to see the profiles of those who applied as well. There are 20 of us. 10 from the same industry, 9 with the same function, 5 with more experience. I'm in deep competition, and that's not to add the other applicants from other avenues like Monster, their Taleo site, or even their own referrals. I don't know if I'll get it. I really hope I do. If I don't...

I DON'T KNOW HAHAHA. I just feel like everything went well for me during the interview process so I'm not sure how to react if I don't get it. Is it my lack of experience? May attitude ba ko? Did I offend anyone? Aaargh. I'm already excited for that new life. New people, bigger salary, more savings, more... food options lol.

Can I just stop worrying about it? As I said, even if I don't get it I'll still have a job. I should be happy about that. Right?

Right.

Hay Lord.

June 9 - I'm still waiting for news. But for some reason, I'm not too hung up on it like yesterday. Yeah, I'm still thinking about it, but now it doesn't feel like a big deal anymore. In fact I was even excited to finish all my work today. Weird.

June 12 - It's a holiday so I wasn't expecting any news. The longer I don't hear about it, I feel like the slimmer my chance becomes. If they wanted to hire me couldn't they decide right away cos they know they had to wait a month for me to get started? LOL IDK. It's not like offers are given in a jiffy. It's sad but I'm trying not to be so sad about it. But I really am. Their Jobstreet posting is already gone too. Which means two things, they already hired someone or the ad has expired. We'll see tomorrow haha.

June 13 - I was supposed to follow up today but didn't have to 'cos the HR messaged me first. Yay. No word yet about the decision of the stakeholder but they'll keep me posted. Whew. I'm getting anxious about it but it's a good sign they reached out first right? Hay Looooord.

June 14 - HR called me to get additional references for background check. No offer yet. They asked for 1 colleague, 1 superior, and 1 HR from all my past employers. It's weird 'cos you don't usually ask for references from past companies but whatever, I want to get back with the info immediately haha. Hopefully it'll turn out well!

June 19 - Some of my references were called today. One of them told me I'm up for a job offer. I can't believe it.

June 20 - HR called me to deliver news! I'm moving on to the last steps of the recruitment process: medical and background check. I asked if there's already an offer, and she said yes. I can't wait to get over it and finally discuss the job offer, which according to them would definitely play around double of my current salary, but less than my asking rate. I'm already okay with double, honestly. I only racked up my asking rate because I saw they're offering 6 digits for the post haha.

Also today, I just tendered my resignation to my current manager. Which now troubles me because technically, I haven't signed an offer from White & Case and I wouldn't know if my getting hired is contingent on the pre-employment checks. Anyway, I asked if it's okay for me to resign already and she said to go ahead because 60 days notice is quite long.

June 21 - I accomplished the medical exam this morning, and got the company name wrong for the drug test forms. For some reason, the guy at the drug test area told me to write Union Bank under company name. I was like, okay maybe the fee is going to be shouldered by the bank, IDK I didn't ask. So I called the HR and confirmed that it's indeed wrong, and weird. So I called the hospital to correct it. Whatever. I hope my results get routed properly.

June 26 - I'm feeling apprehensive but I can't really do anything but wait haha.

July 4 - All my paranoia was for naught. I just signed their offer today, after negotiating for a higher base pay. I didn't get the 6-digits just so you know. Also, I know I'm not worth that (yet). I'm starting on August 21, two days away from my last day here at Pointwest. I already discussed with my current manager and we're good, except that I really had to fulfill the 60-day notice. Good thing White & Case was very considerate of it. My manager also didn't really have anything to counter my resignation, I'm lined up for promotion this month but that's still subject to deliberation, and I'm 4 months short of the average time it takes for someone to get promoted at my level. And I know I'm not that good to break the record of shortest promotion gap ever haha. And the whole long-term/short-term US stint is really just an empty promise. We got a hundred percent denial from the US Embassy this year. I consider myself lucky that I was able to fly once at least.

It's funny 'cos reading back at this whole White & Case recruitment diary, I realized how sobrang praning ko lang I almost didn't want to publish this HAHAHA.

But here you go. Just so I'd have something to laugh about in the future.