As I bid goodbye to 2008..

Festivities, It's my Life 1 Comment »

It is just less than 12 hours and we’re about to welcome a new year. A lot of people might say that the new year will make no difference as with the other years that past, well, many people still believe that a new year, signifies new hope, new beginning.

I can say that I have been blessed this year. Though I have experienced difficulties (especially financial difficulties :P ), year 2008 is still a happy year for me. I believe, that before we say that a year has not been good for us, why not think of other people who are less fortunate that we are. So, if I were to ask, how’s my 2008? My answer would be, It was a great year. And, I am looking forward for 2009. I know that there will be challenges ahead but then with God’s gracious love, I will be able to conquer it all.

My plans for 2009? Well, honestly I have not laid down my plans for next year.. OMG! Hmm.. I have started earning for Antoinette’s schooling and I will be more thrifty next year (hopefully! :) ). Mid next year, maybe I will start looking for a greener pasteur for I have to be ready for my daughter’s education. I am also planning to apply for a housing loan. I am planning to finish my “pending” cross stitch projects.. :)

Getting married next year? I don’t think it will not be materialized even later next year. I still need to support my youngest sister’s college expenses. Maybe, when she’s already working then I guess, I can tie the knot by then. Anyway, I am not in a hurry to get married yet. Although, I still want to see myself wearing a wedding gown and walking down the long isle of a church while my groom waits for me at the altar. :)

New Year’s resolution? My new year’s resolutions are: 1)never be late from work again (my team captain will be proud of me :) ) ; 2) be more patient to honey and nonet :) ; 3) be more patient to everybody (LOL!); 4) forget about being an impulsive buyer :P ; 5) use my credit card wisely (hopefully again..)

Yesterday, I asked my mother to buy fruits for our table. During the past years we normally have 12 kinds of fruit for goodluck. This year, we have 13 kinds. We saw in the news that it should be more than 12 so that the good fortune will last longer than 12 months.

My mother is planning to prepare Relyenong bangus, Embotido, menudo and pansit. My sister will prepare coffee jelly and I will doing Buko pandan for our dessert. Yummy!

It’s a good thing that I am on my Holiday Off tomorrow. I will really be able to enjoy the celebration as we bid goodbye to 2008 and say hello to year 2009!!!

Family Day @ the Bay

family, Little Antoinette No Comments »

I went to work last Christmas and Nonet’s father has a work in Quezon as well, so we decided to celebrate Christmas together 3 days later. Anyway, it’s still holiday then. He arrived last December 27 and we really wanted to catch up with each other. We went to Greenhills Shopping center for Nonet to watch this year’s COD. This year’s theme is not the usual Christmas stories. But more on Filipino culture and values, and environmental awareness.

I really enjoyed going there. We had a little shopping in the night market. We ate at the different ihaw-ihaw stall’s around it. Nonet enjoyed watching the walking puppets. It is being played every 30 minutes. I believe the show will run up to first week of January. Nonet was so delighted with the puppet marching band. She told me that she wanted to be like the one playing the trumpet! :)

The following day, ney and I decided to spend sometime at SM Mall of Asia. We had our lunch in one of the resto’s there. We don’t have any plans to shop. We just wanted to spend some quality time together.

SM Mall of Asia

Mall of Asia is standing in front of Manila Bay. So, when we got tired of strolling around the mall, we decided to cross the road and went to the park by the bay. We took some pictures with it but as always, I will just post it here some other time. I have not transferred the pictures from the digicam to my PC.

manila bay

Anyway, I really get pleasure from watching the sea and enjoy the cool breeze it brings. Nonet busied herself from running into the spacious park. Nonet is a free-spirited toddler. We just kept an eye on her well as she enjoy running in the park.

MOA

We had our dinner at Kalye Juan. They serve all Filipino dishes. We had Pork sisig and Paksiw Lechon Kawali. The food was great for a very affordable price.

It was really a happy day especially for my daughter. :)

An Enchanted Hat

It's my Life, Little Antoinette 1 Comment »

It’s just a day before we welcome year 2009 so I am catching up with my delayed post! I am sorry..

To start wth, I just want to share this pretty hat given by my friend Manoline for my daughter as Christmas gift. She bought it from Enchanted Kingdom and so we called it Enchanted hat. Nonet was really delighted about it. She even showed it to her friends and she told them that it was from EK. The hat is actually the Wizard’s hat. Mano said that she thought of giving Nonet just a simple baseball cap. But then, when she saw the Wizard’s Hat well she said that it would be better than the regular baseball cap.

She said that at Nonet’s age, she knew that she will appreciate more the Wizard hat. Well, she did!

EK Wizard's hat

I will have to update this post with Nonet’s picture wearing the said hut. For the meantime, just enjoy this hat picture! :)  

EK wizard's hat

 Here is Nonet wearing EK’s Wizard’s hat! :)

 

Happy Rizal Day!

History 2 Comments »

I just received a text message from Bilog boy which gave me an idea to write something on. Today, is December 30. Today is a national holiday in the Philippines, for we remember Dr. Jose P. Rizal’s death.

He was shot to death at the Luneta Park, then called Bagumbayan, on December 30, 1896. It was 112 years ago. Well, is someone will do a google search, he may be able to find many websites containing information about our national hero. So, I will not elaborate what is it with this man.

Almost every year we celebrate Rizal Day. But then, does the essence of celebrating Rizal Day did any change in our lives? Do we still give importance to the reason behind his death? Or do we just celebrate or remember this day for the sake of “remembering” it?  

Ask your selves…

Jose Rizal

A Kiss underneath the Misletoe!

Festivities, lifestyle, nature 1 Comment »

Mistletoe has been a part of Christmas ornaments and decorations. Though we have mistletoe decor at home, we don’t usually hang it by the door. I guess, mistletoe has been famous because of a custom. I have heard a lot of stories, that if a male and a female where caught under a mistletoe, they are obliged to kiss each other and would actually end up with each other.

I searched the net to check the origins of this custom. As always, wikipedia came in handy:

According to a custom of Christmas cheer, any male and female who meet under a hanging of mistletoe are obliged to kiss. The custom is of Scandinavian origin. It was the plant of peace in Scandinavian antiquity. If enemies met by chance beneath it in a forest, they laid down their arms and maintained a truce until the next day.” This ancient Scandinavian custom led to the tradition of kissing under the mistletoe.

 

It is a sweet and funny tradition. But then do you know that, mistletoe is actually a poisonous plant?

Mistletoe is the common name for a group of hemi-parasitic plants in the order Santalales that grow attached to and within the branches of a tree or shrub. Parasitism evolved only nine times in the plant kingdom;[1] of those, the parasitic mistletoe habit has evolved independently five times: Misodendraceae, Loranthaceae, Santalaceae (formerly considered the separate family Eremolepidaceae), and Santalaceae (formerly treated as the separate family Viscaceae). Although Viscaceae and Eremolepidaceae were placed in a broadly-defined Santalaceae by Angiosperm Phylogeny Group 2, they originated independently, according to DNA sequences analysed by Dan Nickrent, Southern Illinois University.

The word ‘mistletoe’ is of uncertain etymology; it may be related to German Mist, for dung and Tang for branch, but Old English mistel was also used for basil.

Mistletoe is a poisonous plant that causes acute gastrointestinal problems including stomach pain, and diarrhea along with low pulse.  (Wikipedia)

Well, mistletoe will always be part of our Christmas decorations. Who knows, that the person you will kiss under the mistletoe is your one true love. :)

It’s the Most Wonderful time of the Year

family, Festivities, It's my Life, lifestyle No Comments »

Finally it’s here! We’ve been waiting for Christmas day and it’ here!

Christmas holidays is my favorite time of the year. Every year, I look forward to this season. How I enjoy completing my Christmas list. Shopping gifts for my godchildren, my family and my friends. Putting up our Christmas tree. Eating puto bumbong and bibingka. And, participating the 9-day novena mass or misa de gallo.

Well, due to work schedule I wasn’t able to complete the simbang gabi. I thought I will not be able to attend even a single day but I was able to manage. I attended the last day of simbang gabi last December 24. The priest asked who was able to complete the 9-day novena mass, and almost everybody was able to complete it. I just laugh to myself. It was everybody’s last day while it’s my first time to attend this year’s Simbang gabi. I really wanted to attend it though it’s just a day. Gladly I was able to make it

  

On the same day, I went to Robinson’s galleria to do my last minute shopping. Well, I just need to buy few items more to complete my list. As expected, there was a long queue for atm. When it was my turn, I almost cry when my bank went offline. I looked for another ATM in the mall and thank God I was able to find one. I withdrawn enough money to pay my credit card bills and for the things I need to buy.

I arrived home at around 5PM. I was really tired that I fell asleep. My sister woke me up at around 8PM for we will be attending the midnight mass. We intended to attend the 9PM mass but we ended up hearing the 10:30 PM mass. It was our Parish priest who celebrated the mass. The  homily was really good. He really made a point and hopefully everybody was able to understand, internalize and materialize what the priest said during the homily.

He shared us that he was watching the news few hours ago. He was really dismayed about our local actors and actresses. Those showbiz personalities were doing feeding programs and gift giving. They said that it is their way to praise and thank God for the ample of blessings they received. Then Msgr. Pasti said, it is not good to do feeding programs and gift giving only once a year. Feeding the hungry must not be done only once a year but everytime an oppurtunity comes for you to feed the hungry and to help the needy. Well, he has a point. A very big point that everybody must realize.

As utter my usual prayer, I thank God for many blessings He has given and continue to shower on me. I thanked Him for the I have enough money to buy gifts for my love ones and to have many foods on our table. I thanked Him for everything. Then, a thought came to me. .

Every year, we celebrate Christmas to remember Jesus’ birthday.  All of us are too busy shopping for gifts, buying foods. But have we ever realize or think for a moment, if we have prepared our gift for the birthday celebrator? Isn’t that we celebrate Christmas because, it is Jesus birthday?

I cried when I thought that I have not prepared any gifts for Jesus. Then I told Him in prayers that, the best gift I can give Him is myself. I am not perfect though. My soul isn’t that white as ivory. But then, with Jesus love for me, I may be able to make myself a pleasant gift.

When I pray to God and ask Him to make me strong, He gves me oppurtunities to be strong. That sometimes, I don’t want to ask him to make me strong, :) When I pray for patience, He gives me oppurtunities to be patient. Very patient. It is so hard, Lord! Well, I asked for it and so He gave me.   

My Christmas this year is really wonderful. Hopefully, the Christmas Spirit lives in each one of us, the whole year round!

Merry Christmas!

Is Santa Claus for real?

Fairy tales, family, Feast Days, Festivities, It's my Life, lifestyle 3 Comments »

When we’re young, we always hang our Christmas stockings and wait for dear Santa Claus to fill it with gifts. More often than not, we caught our parents secretly placing our Christmas wishes into those big stockings the night before Christmas. So, when we woke up and greet Christmas day a good morning, we found our stockings filled with gifts.  Then we knew that Santa stopped by our house last night, gave our gifts for being good boys and girls the whole year.

To this day, Santa Claus is still a significant symbol of celebrating Christmas. I received this email this morning and I would like to share it with you.

 Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.

From the Editorial Page of The New York Sun, written by Francis P. Church, September 21, 1897 We take pleasure in answering thus prominently the communication below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful author is numbered among the friends of The Sun:

“Dear Editor–I am 8 years old.
Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
Papa says, ‘If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.’
Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?”
Virginia O’Hanlon, 115 West Ninety-fifth Street

Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the scepticism of a sceptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no child-like faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished. Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world. You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding. No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

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A Christmas Wish

family, Festivities, Filipino Showbiz, lifestyle 1 Comment »

I watched Betty La Fea in Channel 2 the other day. It stars Bea Alonzo and John Lloyd Cruz. There was a scene when Armando Solis(John Lloyd Cruz) is sharing with Betty(Bea Alonzo) the places he went to celebrate Christmas in the past years. He also told her that when he was young, he used to write his  Christmas wish on a paper. He said that his father will grant almost everything in the list, except for his number 1 wish. Betty then asked Armando what was it. But Armando just shrugged his shoulders and told Betty that it doesn’t matter anymore.

Then, it’s Betty’s turn to share her past Christmas celebration. Betty had wonderful Christmas with her family. Then, she asked Armando if he can spend his Christmas with her and her family. Then, Armando hugged him tight. He told Betty that it was his number 1 wish, “to spend Christmas with a family.” Something that his father cannot fulfill.

john lloyd cruz and bea alonzo

I really like their love team. I have admired John Lloyd Cruz as an actor and he really looks good in the big screen. He’s a very good actor. He can play each role given to him as if he’s really that “person.” I remember one time, when he played the role of man who has cerebral palsy. That in spite of it, that person became successful. That’s about John Lloyd. :)

Well, everyone of us has our own Christmas wish. As for me, I just wish that my daughter will have good health and many blessings for me my family. :)

Strong Woman: Am I?

Something Good No Comments »

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Nine Mornings

Feast Days, Festivities, Food Trip, It's my Life, lifestyle No Comments »

Christmas will never be complete for Filipinos if we will not participate in the 9-day Novena mass in preparation for Christmas day. Simbang Gabi as we call it here in the Philippines. Though, the mass is being celebrated usually at around 4AM, we still call it Simbang Gabi or MIsa de Gallo in Spanish. The word “gallo“ comes from a Spanish word called rooster.  

The 9-day novena mass starts on December 16 up to December 24. They said that if you will be able to complete the 9-day novena, whatever it is that you pray for will be granted.

When I was young, I really see to it that I will complete the 9-day simbang gabi. I would really felt bad if I miss a day, especially when I am praying for something that I really wanted to have. Due to work reasons, I can no longer complete my simbang gabi. But, I still participate in the mass if I can.

In our parish church, we have 3 schedules for simbang gabi. That is really cool. Everybody will have the time to attend mass, without making work reason as an excuse. Well, that really hit me.. :(   The first schedule is 9:30PM which starts from Dec. 15-23. And, 3:30 AM and 5:00 AM which starts on Dec. 16-24. 

The sacrifice of waking up early and to hear mass will then be benefited by a seasonal Filipino delicacies, Bibingka and Puto Bumbong. Although, these two kakanins are being served from some stores all year round, it is still great to enjoy these kinds of food during the holidays.

bibingka

Bibingka

puto bumbong

Puto Bumbong

As of this writing, it is just about 6 days to go before Christmas. I still have time to attend Simbang Gabi and enjoy bibingka and puto bumbong.. :)

The Lyric Stand

It's my Life, lifestyle 2 Comments »

We had a wonderful company Christmas party last December 10 held at Silver City in Tiendesitas.  I think it is one of the most unforgettable Christmas party I have ever attended in the company. Well, maybe because I was one of the performers that night..

I, together with my co-singers(Verlyn and Orville) went to the area around 2PM. Yet the call time for performers was 12NN. We didn’t come to the call time for we will be singing during dinner. We’re not “actually part” of the program that needs to be rehearsed.

One of the singers(Japoks) though, reported at the venue on the call time. At around 3PM we had our make up and hair done. Then, our musicians came. They had their usual tuning for instruments. Since we will be singing while the guests are enjoying their dinner, we will be performing as if we’re in a bar. With our lyric stand infront of us, since we really didn’t pay much time memorizing our songs.

That was our problem. The people whom the company commissioned for the sound system failed to bring a lyric stand! We really panic upon learning that there was no available lyric stand. Verlyn even asked one of their men if they can just get a lyric stand since, it was just around 4PM then and we’ll be on stage at around 7:30PM. We’re losing our hope for having a lyric stand. We’re thinking of different ways on how we will position our lyric sheets.

Japoks was so clever to improvise a lyric stand! Though it looks “chaka” but it was a great help.  I had a very bad colds then but God sang with me. Our performance went so well.

concentrix Christmas party

We really enjoyed our Las Vegas themed Christmas party. Each employee were a given 500-amount of token. I bet on Baccarat and Black Jack. I also tried my luck with slot machines but I wasn’t that lucky enough that night. I believe everybody enjoyed the party.

I know, that because of that party, many of us are now dreaming of going to Las Vegas, Nevada in the US. Maybe try our luck with their casino and enjoy a stay in hotel Las Vegas. :)

What is your dream job?

It's my Life, lifestyle 1 Comment »

If I were to ask about my dream job, it would be being a “Cashier” in a department store or a supermarket! It is true. I used to play a cashier when I was young. My younger sister would act as the customer with her basket of goodies. We made our own play moneys then. We cut out bond papers and write the amount on it. We used bottle covers as coins. Then I would borrow my mother’s calculator and I would be the cashier.

cash register

It really makes me laugh every time I remember those days :) . My younger sister’s dream job was to be a “tinapa/daing” vendor :) . She had this dream because of our friend vendor who counts the money from the tinapa(steamed fish) and daing she was able to sell. When my sister saw her counting all the money, she’s really amazed and told my mother that she wanted to be a vendor when she grew up. Well, she was only 5 then and I was 8.  :)

To this day, I would really want to experience being a cashier just for the sake of fulfilling my so- called ”dream job”. But then, maybe a little help from weight loss product will help me to trim down a bit. As we know, cashiers, sales ladies and the like have slim bodies! :)

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