My Five Things

I’ve been tagged by Thea on the five things I would like my kid to know before she grows up. It’s hard to narrow my list to just five but here goes…

  1. Family matters. I would like her to know the importance of family and how time spent with family is time well spent.
  2. God is everywhere. I do not mean this in a threatening, you-better-behave condescending tone. I want her to see God in everyone she meets and to be closer to God in every opportunity that comes her way.
  3. Sharing is but a normal thing. It doesn’t have to be Christmas to give alms to the poor and share with our less fortunate brothers.
  4. She is loved.  She doesn’t have to do something pleasing or get someone’s approval to be loved. Love doesn’t work that way…and with this…
  5. True love waits. Way too early, I know. But in this day and age when the culture dictates what’s normal and what’s not, I better get ahead of them.

And so I’m tagging everyone else who would like to think about their five things. Thanks Thea for letting me do some sentimental thinking : )

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January 30, 2008. General. 1 comment.

Caught by the “Brothers Forever” Bug

I know this has been last week’s news. About a forty-ish Filipino guy auditioning on American Idol and singing his original composition. I found his audition hilarious and I like Renaldo Lapuz’s kind, sincere aura, nevermind if he’s a bit eccentric. My daughter apparently liked his song and she declared it to be her favorite song. I was so surprised when, after viewing the YouTube video the night before, she told me she has a favorite song and she sang two lines of Brothers Forever. Now the song keeps on playing in my mind whether I like it or not, hehehe.

January 26, 2008. Tags: , , . General. 2 comments.

Where art thou?

I’ve always been one sentimental fool, not just with people I’ve connected throughout my life one way or another, but with things big and small, eaten or not. And so I post this list of what I’ve loved, cherished, and missed. I wonder where they are, or if they still exist but I have no luck in finding them. My memories with them still linger…

  • Coney Island’s New York, New York ice cream: Will Coney Island ever make a comeback? I love their NY, NY flavor and miss it till this day. Yup, even when dozens of flavors abound in the market.
  • Twit-twit chichiria: I used to have this particular junk food when I was a kid. I remember my mom buying it for me. It was salty with just the right amount of saltiness, and crunchy, too. I’ve asked a lot of people if they’ve heard or tried this, but the answer is always a “no”. Sometimes I ask myself if this is just a creation of my mind. Even my mom can’t recall getting this for me. But really, my tastebuds still remember Twit-twit!
  • Aratiles: I remember picking these tiny berry-like fruits when I was a kid with cuts and scrapes. I liked it green with a bit of the red indicating ripeness. Sadly, i don’t see any aratiles trees anymore.
  • Dragonflies: I used to spend afternoons chasing dragonflies in the vacant lot fronting our house. They would just hover over the grass, as if saying “tag me!” I saw one a few months ago. It was alone and I bet it was lonely. They don’t come in droves anymore : (
  • Horlicks: Yes, way before the Ovalteenies, there was Horlicks.
  • Gospel komiks: We used to have this back in grade school and it was compulsary to subscribe. The good thing is I enjoyed reading it a lot even if it was required reading, which made it easier for me.
  • Magnolia’s bottled juices sold and delivered right at your doorstep: Everything comes in plastic nowadays, and if you want these bottled juices, you have to drive to the supermarket for one.
  • Homemade sugar-sprinkled donuts sold by a neighborhood vendor: What’s so special about this thing when there are a lot of donut stores sprouting everywhere? Well, it’s the fact that my siblings and I would look forward to afternoons of donut galore and we would gather around manong’s can container amazed at the donuts in it.
  • Mang Pat’s fishballs: I still bump into Mang Pat once in awhile, but he doesn’t sell his fishballs anymore. I used to sneak out to buy from him because my mom didn’t really want us to be exposed to too much streetfood. He makes great sauces that no other fishballs comes close.
  • Iloilo fishballs: When my family and I would hear Sunday evening mass at a parish in BF Homes, there was this clean fishball stand with the sign Iloilo fishballs. It wasn’t the typical street fishballs because it was more solid and it tasted, well, sosyal for a fishball. I loved it! I was sad when it disappeared after a couple of Sundays. I would see the owner of the fishball cart hearing mass but I just couldn’t get the nerve to ask her if she could please bring it back for my tummy’s sake.  

As you may have noticed, most of what i miss are food cravings, perhaps because they weren’t just food for the tummy but for my soul as well.

January 25, 2008. Tags: , , . General, Lists. 4 comments.

One Long Week

Our kasambahay is back from her much-deserved holiday break! Hooray! Although I’ve enjoyed our bonding time as a family without any helper in the house, there has got to be some normalcy in our lives again. It was getting pretty toxic that I found it hard to breathe. Now the house is at its passable spic n’ span…still not squeakingly clean (that will take my mom or a miracle to do it), but tolerable and liveable just the same.

One week without help also gave me a chance to domesticate myself once again. My husband kidded me and feigned astonishment that I could still cook after all. Somehow, ages of not cooking made him think I must have lost my touch. The truth is, I miss having all the time in the world to cook. I remember when life wasn’t as busy at it is now, I would spend the night playing the recipe in my mind. Yes, even picturing myself chopping garlic and actually smelling the dish I’m cooking. My husband, then-boyfriend, was at his heaviest then because any dish I would cook, well, he’d eat with much gusto. After all, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. He must have loved my cooking so much that he married me! Now in our 4th year as a married couple, my husband reminisces those tummy-filled days and tells me jokingly that I’ve been so good campaigning at what I could do as a wo-man, but now that I’ve got him tied for better and for worse, I suddenly forget him and his hungry tummy. Ouch!

And so in the long one week all alone, I went back and got dirty. My daughter even complained that my hands smelled of garlic. I cooked our family’s traditional miki for our New Year’s Eve feast which we spent as a threesome, four if you count Bailey, our dog. And he loved it! Then there was my first attempt to bake babyback ribs ala Kenny Rogers’. I marinated it in the red wine that was left from our New Year dinner and added honey at a little bit of everything. I didn’t taste like the resto version but he loved it just the same. The marbled potatoes which I sauted in olive oil, garlic, and seasoned with parmesan cheese, salt, and basil was such a hit with him, too. Ooh I just love cooking for him and watching him eat what I’ve prepared. Hey, I’ve missed that.

Halfway into the first month of the year, I resolve to cook for my family more and to spend more time in the kitchen like I used to.  How I’ll do it, I still don’t know. But I’ll find a way. Even if it means it’s just SPAM I’m frying.

January 11, 2008. Tags: , , . Married life. 2 comments.

Clickitty Click

Yesterday was our 4th wedding anniversary. Can’t believe it’s actually been 4 years since we’ve tied the knot and actually a decade of being in each other’s lives. It’s amazing how you can stay in love with one person as if that’s what you were meant to do for the rest of your life, comfortably and rightfully so. I’m just thankful God has blessed me with such a wonderful partner who can keep up with my irrational train of thoughts (haha) and who keeps me company in good times and in bad.

We spent the day with a lunch at Sonya’s Garden, where we had our wedding reception, reminiscing how we couldn’t taste anything that day even when the guests were all raving about the food. Sonya’s has been our favorite date place eversince. We just love everything about the place, from the food, to the garden, to the bed and breakfast cottages. Although Zoe has been there a few times already, this is actually our first time to bring her there as a “thinking” toddler. She felt right at-home with the place and loved being in “a restaurant with a garden”. It was a bonding moment for the three of us and another first for Zoe…her first photoshoot. I think she’s inherited her dad’s love for taking pics. Because it was just the three of us, our first pics were mostly of me and Zoe, or Zoe alone, and so we decided to well, let Zoe try taking a picture of me and her dad, because it was our anniversary anyway. Wonders of wonders, her shots were not bad at all. It amused us so much, and made her trigger-happy too, so we kept on smiling for her and she kept on shooting our pics.

I’m sharing with you Zoe’s pictures at PictureTrail. Now she’s discovered a new toy and she carries the digicam around the house taking pics of anything as out of this world as the caller ID, the computer mouse, and an empty Starbucks praline mocha frap cup.

January 4, 2008. Tags: , , . Family, Married life. Leave a comment.

‘Tis Been a Good Year

Goodbye 2007, hello 2008. Cliche as it may sound, time indeed flies so fast. Too fast that sometimes I have to stop myself from getting caught in the whirlpool and breathe for a moment. Now for a recap on the year that was…

A few days into 2007, we had to rush Zoe to Asian Hospital due to frequent vomiting after our anniversary celebration in Baguio. Turned out we all got acute gastroenteritis from our eating binge in Baguio. It was painful for me to see the nurse attach an IV needle on Zoe’s tiny vein, but I was amazed that my little girl didn’t cry at all, and even watched as the IV needle was being inserted. Talk about being brave. It was a learning experience for me as a mother, one I hope and pray won’t happen again. I’m sure all moms feel the same way.

Around March, I forged a partnership with my cousin to start a new business. First business venture of sorts, unless you count my selling polvoron back in high school as one. It wasn’t in our plans to enter into one, although it has always been my dream to be an entrepreneur, but because I wouldn’t be going into it alone, my husband and I decided to give it a try. Unfortunately, my partnership with my cousin didn’t work out midway into the construction of the shop, after signing the contract with the mall administrator and applying for the necessary documents. It was nervewracking, to say the least, and I had to decide on whether I would make a go for it, despite knowing it would be doubly difficult, or just give up and go back to my “lazy” lifestyle. Luckily, I have a wonderful husband and a great family to back me up. And so, I finished what I started and now, The Li’l Nail Shop is up and running. My husband has been super helpful in running the shop. And I can’t be any happier. We’re going on our fifth month this January and, so far, so good. My satisfaction runs deeper than what we make at the end of the day. It’s more about the new friends I’ve made, the lives (of my staff) I’ve enriched somehow, and the priceless smiles I see on my clients’ faces, especially the kids who come in for a kiddie foot spa.

On the last quarter of 2007, not in our plans at all for the near future, hubby and I found ourselves getting our own condo unit at TRIbeca. It was definitely not something we were planning to do now that our business is just in its infancy stages, but the offer and the condo features were just too hard to resist (especially the aquapark and the giant dollhouses). For those who know me or my husband personally, you’d know we’re not really people who act on impulse. Me perhaps, especially when I want something too much, but not my husband. He’s the calculative one and I’m the one who acts first before I think (well, most of the time). I know we’ll have to tighten our belts all the more, but at least we’re building an asset. Hopefully, this is just the start of more to come.

Yes, it has been a good year for me and my family. Zoe is now 3 years old, and my husband is now getting closer and closer to his goal of getting to fly more often. There have been setbacks last year, yes, but there were countless blessings I am so thankful for and those setbacks just seem so insignificant when you’re surrounded by those you hold and love so dear. God is good and life is beautiful.

I pray that this new year will be a blessed one for all of us. May we live each day with love in our hearts and may each day be an opportunity for us to laugh more, love more, and live more.

January 1, 2008. Tags: , , , . Family. 6 comments.