There’s no place like Earth

nature No Comments »

After I have finished reading Have A Little Faith, I decided to take a break from reading fiction and non-fiction novels. I checked on our book shelf and got me one of the books from 1000 Things You Should Know About. The set is composed of 10 volumes by Grolier.

I took the volume called Space. I have always fascinated by the mystery of space; the stars, the planets, the universe. I always wonder if there are other creatures in the universe other than us, earthlings. I wonder if the said creatures also breathe oxygen. Or they may be breathing carbon dioxide or other gases which make them survive. I wonder if only planet earth holds living things.
We started studying about space as early as pre-school. We learned about the day and night. We learned about the sky. We learned about the sun, the moon and the stars. We learned that we live in
a planet called the Earth. :)

We know that our sun is a medium-sized star; a star that is million light years away from us. The sun is the center of the solar system we belong to. It is also the closest star to our planet.

I remember studying about the planets of the solar system when I was in grade 3. My mind was refreshed with the different characteristics of each planet in our solar system and what makes the earth been called the living planet. Why we have been so lucky to live on our planet.

The Mercury is the closest planet to the sun. We cannot live on this planet. Life can be impossible here, too. At night time its temperature is around -180 degrees Celsius. While at day time, its temperature will be over than 430 degrees Celsius!

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Mercury

Venus is the second planet from the sun. It may be the second planet from the sun but it is the hottest planet in our solar system. Its surface temperature can be over 470 degrees Celsius. Its atmosphere is a thick mixture of carbon dioxide and sulphuric acid. This was caused by the planets volcanoes. I don’t believe life is possible on this planet, too. Unless, the creatures breath carbon dioxide with sulphuric acid. We can see Venus on our night sky because of its thick clouds of Carbon dioxide and sulphuric acid reflects sunlight and make it shine like a star.

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Venus

The planet Mars is the 4th planet from the sun. It also been called as the red planet. It has been said as well as the Earth’s twin planet. Space probes did not find any evidence of life in Mars. However, a possible fossil of a micro-organism in a Mars rock, make scientist speculates that life once exist on Mars. So, the hunt for life on Mars is still on. Man cannot live still on Mars for water is not available there. There could be an oasis somewhere, but as of today, I believe no water has found yet on Mars.

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Mars

Jupiter is the 5th and the biggest planet in our solar system. It is a gigantic planet which measures 142, 984 kilometers across. If life is possible on this planet, this may resolve the overpopulation problem we are experiencing. However, Jupiter is mostly made of hydrogen and helium gas. Even space craft may not be able to land on this planet, because it has no surface to land on!

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Jupiter

Saturn is the 6th planet from the sun and the second biggest, too. Saturn has become famous because of its rings. It is called the ringed-planet. Thinking about the rings that surround this planet, one can really say that it is a beautiful planet. Saturn is not solid. It is made mostly of liquid hydrogen and helium. Like Jupiter, like could not be possible on this planet. But who knows? Saturn is a secretive planet. :)

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Saturn

Next to Saturn is the planet Uranus. It is the 3rd biggest planet of our solar system. It’s the seventh planet. Like Saturn, it has rings, too but very faint. It’s atmosphere is made of hydrogen and helium gas. Uranus surface is made up of an ice-cold ocean of liquid methane. This gave the planet a stunning blue color. :) You think life is possible on this planet? Well, maybe if you can stand the cold surface without freezing!

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Uranus

Neptune is the 8th planet from the sun. Neptune is so far away from the sun, that it will take around 165 Earth years to complete the orbit. It has a surface of icy cold liquid methane and an atmosphere of hydrogen and helium.

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Neptune

Pluto was the once considered a planet. It was then the ninth planet from the sun. It was called as the dwarf planet. However recent studies disqualified Pluto from being called a planet. (Source: 1000 Things You Should Know About: Space)

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Pluto

What do you think made me present to you brief description of our neighboring planets? Why do I need to waste time describing each planet if you can find these things and more over the Internet? As I read about the universe, I realize how tiny we are. We are like dust in the wind (just like the said song tells us). I was very thankful that I was born on this planet. I have appreciated life more after reading the book. Moreover I have appreciated our planet more.

This piece of writing is just a simple reminder that we have only one Earth. There is only one planet in our solar system where life is possible; where we can live.

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Earth

We are all aware of Earth’s destruction. This is a reminder that all of us are responsible in taking care of our Earth. And, we are all being called to do something for our home, our planet.
As you know, there is no place like Earth. We should act now.

Ciao! :)

Bermuda Garden

nature No Comments »

My daughter just got her Science book yesterday. At first I find the book expensive but when I browsed through its pages, I realized that the price we paid for it, was just right. The book is actually a colored textbook and workbook at the same time. :) As I browsed through its pages, I came across a page which shows a beautiful garden. :)

I have always wanted to have a garden. :) Be it a flower garden or vegetable garden. In the province, my Tita Lyn has a beautiful backyard garden. Though there’s not much flowers in it but it offers fruit bearing trees like Mango, Rambutan, Atis, Avocado and more. But what attracts the kids to play and roll and even lay down on her garden is the well trimmed bermuda grass. It is really beautiful. :)

My Tita Lyn though find it difficult to trim the grass sometimes because of rheumatism, she still make it a point that her garden is managed well. I even thought of buying her an echo trimmers to help her trim the bermuda and pull the weeds. :)

She told me that that during rainy seasons, the grass grows so fast. In summer, she sprinkled water to her bermuda to keep it from drying. When we spend vacation in Quezon, we usually stay at Tita Lyn’s house. You bet, Antoinette really enjoys running and rolling and pretend to trip on that garden. She loves it so much! :)

Well, Tita Lyn is currently in the city. She accompanied her youngest sister to see a doctor. She said that when she come back to Quezon after a week or two, she knows that there’s going to be a lot of work in her garden. :)

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(Look at the green grass.. beautiful isn’t it??)

I hope to have one someday! :)

Ciao! :)

A Visit to Los Baños

nature 2 Comments »

Thanks to our team mate Rico, we were able to tour around UP Los Baños and was able to take a glimpse of Mount Makiling. It took about 30 minutes to travel from Pansol to UPLB. We took the zigzag like road to UP. Dadi Rico (as we often call him) told us, that only private vehicles use the road we passed through. He also said that the said road is open up until 8PM only. I learned from him that UP Los Baños was established in 1909, a year after UP Dilimas was founded. There are some spots that we would want to visit like the Botanical Garden but it is under construction. Dadi Rico has been so kind to tour us around the campus instead. :) I really appreciate the wonderful nature that surrounds the campus. I learned that the Makiling Forest is already preserved. There are lots of stories and local folk tales with regard to Maria Makiling. The said goddess of the mountain. I’ll post the different versions of Maria Makiling folk tale on another post. :)

One of the places we visited while we were inside the campus is the National Art’s Center. I was really amazed with the different classrooms and cottages where the students are staying. I wasn’t able to take a picture of the classrooms. :( But, was able to get some good shots near the National Arts Center Pavilion with my friends.

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Wow!

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National Arts Center in UP LB

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Relaxing at an altitude of 300 feet!

 We also passed by the different appartments and dorms of teachers and students. One of my colleagues (Baby) said that by the look of the dorms, it is really possible that there are “unseen” guests in the dorms. Well, the campus is already a hundred years old, it will not surprise me if Casper’s colleagues live there, too. Dadi Rico said that if we would really wanted to feel and witness some kind of “unusual activities” then, we can visit The Baker Hall. Baker Hall is one of the oldest remaining building in UP Los Baños. It was named named after former dean of the College of Agriculture, Charles Fuller Baker. It was said that during World War II, Americans and other citizens of the Allied nations were interned here. Well that could be the reason why there are many “mumu” in the hall.

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Baker Hall in UP Los Baños

We also passed by Girl and Boy Scout Jamboree site. I really enjoyed the trip! :) I really appreciate God’s creation in nature! I hope that we can still work together to preserve mother nature. :)

Ciao! :)

Aurora Borealis

nature, Wonders of the World No Comments »

I was watching Charmed on DVD, this afternoon and in one of the episodes, the sisters were talking about a festivals and mentioned about Aurora Borealis. I have heard about this before and I knew that it is some kind of natural lights seen in the Nothern hemisphere. I looked around the net and found spectacular information, pictures and videos of the Northern Lights.

You could also check the net about how and why we have Aurora Borealis. But on this page, I just wanted to share with you this amazing wonder of nature. :)

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The photo of Northern Lights were taken in Alaska

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This Aurora Borealis picture was taken in the sky’s of Australia at night.

“The heavens declare the glory of God;? the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.” Psalm 19:1-3

Ciao! :)

Mayon’s Rage

In the News, nature No Comments »

In the midst of the happy seasons that we have right now, it’s so sad to think that our fellow Filipino who lives near Mayon Volcano will be spending their Christmas in different evacuation centers. As of this writing, alert level number 4 has been raised with regard to Mayon Volcano. It means that any moment, Mayon Volcano will erupt. It’s good to know that Albay’s local government are working pretty hard to obtain zero casualty. Being an animal lover, I am glad to hear that even the animals, which are within the 10-km danger zone, are moved to a safer place.

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Mayon Volcano

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Aerial view of Mayon Volcano

I know that that this is a natural calamity that only Bro can stop. But, in case that the eruption push through, let us pray together that it will only cause minimal damage.

I pray for the people who lives in that area to be strong. That in spite of the this life’s challenge, they would remain faithful to God and let His light be their hope, our hope and guide.

Ciao! :)

Anne Curtis: Dyosa

Filipino Showbiz, nature 1 Comment »

I watched the finale of Dyosa last night. Dyosa(Goddess) is a fantaserye being aired on ABS-CBN on primetime. The final episode of Dyosa showed that in the end of all battles, evil will always be defeated by good. And, as I  Corinthian 13:13, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

The truthful love of Adonis for Josephine paved way in defeating his evil father, Tadaklan. The purest love of a mother shown by Sinukuan to her daughter, Josephine. That even though she is in her wicked sister’s body, Magayon, that didn’t stop her in giving Josephine a motherly love.

Adonis and Dyosa Tierra

The picture shows Anne Curtis as Dyosa Tierra. She chants “Lika limpera timpera ciera tierra!” to transform her to Dyosa Tierra(Goddess of the Earth). The other picture is Sam Milby as Prinsipe Adonis of Kasamian. He is the son of Tadaklan, the head of Kasamyans.

At the end of the story, Adonis vanished when he was hit by sun’s rays at sunrise. Josephine cried as she witnessed Adonis being shattered by sun’s light. She was still in agony when Amang Suga told her that she needs to be crowned as “Dyosa” sooner. Her coronation as Dyosa was a success.

Since, the first rule of being a goddess is not to fall in love, Mars opted to leave Kabanua and return to Earth as a human being. He asked Josephine to erase all the memories and thoughts he has about Kabanua and all the things that had happened.

Mars and Dyosa Cielo

This one shows Anne as Dyosa Cielo. She uttered Bambun dumarum kalyedun ciera cielo!” to turn her into Dyosa Cielo (Goddess of the Heavens). Beside her is Zanjoe Marudo as Mars. He was the son of Marsian. A Kabanua who chose to live in the world of mortals and marry an ordinary woman.

Josephine then accompanied Kulas as he goes back to the sea. They bid goodbye to each other. As Kulas, is on his way home to the bottom of the sea, he met a mermaid who looked like Josephine. Her name is Perlas.

Kulas and Dyosa Agua

This is Anne as Dyosa Agua. The incantation to morph her into Dyosa Agua (Goddess of the Seas) is “Lama rameda marina domena ciera agua!“. Beside Dyosa Agua is Kulas/Barakula played by Luis Manzano. He was a gibut(merman) who was assigned as the Guardian of Dyosa. He is also the childhood friend of Josephine(Anne).

Magayon died as punishment for all the wickedness she did, while Diana lost her sanity.

I was really moved by what Josephine said before the story comes to an end. It is true that everyone of us is capable of being a goddess. We should not forget that we are all responsible in taking care of our home.

We are all accountable to whatever happens to our sea, air and land. If we look around us, we’ll find an unusual cold weather that we experience today. The worldwide natural disasters remind us people to take care of our home, Earth.

I can say that Dyosa is the best fantaserye ever produced. Congrats to Anne Curtis and the rest of the cast of “Dyosa”. :)

Anne Curtis as Dyosa

Himig ng Pag-ibig

Sa pagsapit ng dilim ako’y naghihintay pa rin
sa iyong maagang pagdating
‘pagkat ako’y nabablisa ‘pag di ka kapiling
bawat sandali’y mahalaga sa atin

tulad ng ibong malaya ang pag-ibig natin
tulad ng langit na kay sarap marating
ang bawat tibok ng puso’y kay sarap damhin
tulad ng himig na kay sarap awitin
nanana nanana…

at ngayon ikaw ay nagbalik sa aking piling
luha ng pag-ibig kay sarap haplusin
tulad ng tubig sa batis hinahagkan ng hangin
pag-ibig ang ilaw sa buhay natin, ooh ooh
nanana nanana…

tulad ng ibong malaya ang pag-ibig natin
tulad ng langit na kay sarap marating
ang bawat tibok ng puso’y kay sarap damhin
tulad ng himig ng pag-ibig natin
nanana nanana…

tulad ng ibong malaya ang pag-ibig natin
tulad ng langit na kay sarap marating
ang bawat tibok ng puso’y kay sarap damhin
tulad ng himig ng pag-ibig
nanana nanana…

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. :)

Leonids Shower 2008

In the News, It's my Life, nature 8 Comments »

When I arrived at home from the grocery store, my youngest sister told me something to blog on. She said that there will be a meteor shower in the early mornings of November 18. According to news, Leonids meteor shower will occur between 2AM-5AM of November 18.

We love star gazing. In fact, at my age, I still make a wish whenever I see a falling star! My cousin Joy said that we can stay awake up to 2AM. They are really excited to watch the Leonids meteor shower. Well, since my work starts at 4AM, I am already awake at around 3AM. I thought I will be able to witness the shower, but for some reasons I woke up late today and didn’t have the time to give even 5 minutes to stare at the dark sky. Too bad :(   I even prepared my binoculars the night before so I would be ready to see a spectacular meteor shower.

Since I wasn’t able to see the said meteor shower, I just did a google search about it.  The most remarkable shower or storm associated with Leonids was the 1833 shower in Alabama which made a great effects in the people who witnessed it then.

 

The most famous depiction of the 1833 meteor storm actually produced in 1889 for the Adventist book Bible Readings for the Home Circle based on a first-person account of the 1833 storm by a minister, Joseph Harvey Waggoner on his way from Florida to New Orleans. (Source Wikipedia)

The Leonids meteor shower was discovered on the nights of Nov. 12-13, 1833. Many people thought that it was judgement day already. The shower was called Leonids for thousands of meteors come from the constellation Leo.

 

 Leonids at Niagara Falls in 1833

In my life, I really haven’t seen a “meteor shower” like the one above. Though I have seen couples of shooting stars but not actually a shower.

Well, there’s one more meteor shower that I can catch. It will be the Geminids meteor shower which will happen sometime on December 13-14. I guess I will be lucky enough to watch the glowing stars fall from the sky. Meteors will emanate from the constellation Gemini which happens to be my birth sign :)

Caught between Nature and Ney

family, It's my Life, nature, relationship No Comments »

Ney texted me yesterday about the big project that they would have in Pagbilao. Simply hearing the news, I am so delighted to know about this project that ney will be supervise and manage. Believe me it is going to be a big project. I am happy for ney. He’s on the right track again. We have had so many fights in the past weeks and I am happy that everything is slowly going back to their proper places.

Ney is so excited to start the project which will take place sometime between the last week of November and 1st week of December. Actually at this moment, ney is in Pagbilao and touring around the site. 

I did a search about this place in Pagbilao. I am really caught between ney and mother nature. I know all along what the project is all about. I know that it is another Coal Power plant. They will also build ship port within it and will have road widening as well. What I don’t know is the harmful effect that this type of power plant will give to nature. I have read an article that sometime in May, 2008, there was a protest againsts this company and as what I have understand this “nature matter” has been raised to Senate already.  

I really felt bad, knowing that ney will lead a team to build another coal power plant that might give off a bad climate change in the country and in the world.

I remember that ney and I have discussed environmental aspects about this company before. He said that it is true that there have been so many protests against this coal power plant, yet these are all been resolved.

I don’t want to be “nega” to ney. For this project underwent a bidding process. And he is really excited about this project.

But then, I hope that our government will be firm in ensuring that this company follows environmental measures to protect our environment.  

 

The Lady of the Night

It's my Life, lifestyle, nature, Philippines' Best 9 Comments »

It is just a few days to go before Halloween and I remember something that I wanted to share you. Well, this is not something to scare you but simply to inform you. I am not sure if you have seen a flower or the plant called Lady of the Night. It is a plant that has a thick leaves and it bears flowers once a month only.

But here’s the freaky part. The plant was called Lady of the Night for it flowers opens in full bloom when 12 midnight strikes. And, if you want to see its beauty and admire its scent, you really need to wait for 12AM. Why? For after 12, its beauty and scent will fade. The house we stayed in Taytay, Rizal had this plant. :)

Tales said that where these plants grow, there is a “lady” who takes care of it. Hmmm.. The place where we lived for 3 years in Rizal was said to be a “garbage pill” for salvaged people before it has been developed to a subdivision. My mother said that there are really unseen elements living in there. One of neighbors there said that Mr. Licauco has visited that place already and according to him, there is a barangay of unseen elements living there with people.

In the house we stayed, there is actually “something” there who is living with us. I guess up to this day they stay there. But my aunt and her family who now stays at that house doesn’t mind them anymore. Well I have my own creepy experience there, which happened about 7 years ago, I would just post it some other time.

As for now, let’s just admire the beauty of Lady of the Night. This is the picture of it, which I have found. :)

How fortunate is the fortune plant?

It's my Life, nature 5 Comments »

I bought a Fortune plant about a few months ago. I have always wanted to have one of these plants not only because it is said to a fortunate one, but also because I love plants. Since we don’t have enough space in the place we’re living, we don’t have any yards to grow plants, I opted to at least one of these.

One day, on my way from work, there is a woman selling these plants. It cost PhP 20 for 3 stalks. I also bought a simple vase for my plant and the magic jelly. I bought the magic jelly at SM Megamall, with my best friend Daisy for my fortune plant as well.

I have read articles that fortune plants originated from Chinese. These plants will bring good luck to the person who owns it. That is when you plant it and it lives then fortune will comes to you, but if it dies, it will be the other way around.

Well, for me having the fortune plant brings me fortune not because of the tale behind it but because the energy it gives and the happiness it brings every time I look at it. :) I believe that fortune comes to those who have positive outlook in life. That inspite of all life’s challenges, a person has to stay strong and optimistic about life. :)

My fortune plants up close!

The Doña’s Flower

History, nature, Philippines' Best 3 Comments »

When I was in grade school, we used to study different flowers and its parts. I remembered I often asked my mother to buy some flowers which I would bring to school for our experiment. Then, one of the flowers my mom brought home one day, is Doña Aurora. She said that the flower was named after the wife of President Quezon.

As I looked back the old days, I thought that if Doña Aurora was named after Aurora Aragon Quezon, then it is possible that there are other hybrids developed for other Philippine First ladies. Just as I thought, here they are:

Doña Hilaria

(Named after the first wife of Gen. Emilio Agoncillo, Hilaria del Rosario)

Doña Aurora

(Named after the wife of President Manuel Quezon, Aurora Aragon)

Doña Pacencia

(Named after the wife of President Jose P. Laurel, Pacencia Hidalgo)

Doña Esperanza

(Named after the second wife of President Sergio Osmeña, Esperanza Limjap)

Doña Trining

(Named after the wife of President Manuel Roxas, Trinidad de Leon)

Doña Alicia

(Named after the wife of President Elpidio Quirino, Alicia Syquia)

Doña Luz

(Named after the wife of President Ramon Magsaysay, Luz Banzon)

Doña Leonila

(Named after the wife of President Carlos P. Garcia, Leonila Dimataga)

Doña Evangelina

(Named after the second wife of President Diosdado Macapagal, Evangelina Macaraeg)

Doña Imelda

(Named after the wife of President Marcos, Imelda Romualdez)

Doña Cory

That flower was named after the first lady president of the Philippines, President Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino. She’s the wife of the brave late Senator Benigno Aquino Jr.

Doña Amelita

(Named after the wife of President Fidel V. Ramos, Amelita Martinez)

Looking at these flowers I wonder why there isn’t any “doña” named after the wife of the President Joseph Ejercito and the current president, Gloria Arroyo.. Hmmm, I really wonder why?!?

Well, next time you came across with any of the doñas above, you know now whom they were named after to. FYI! :)

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