December 31, 2013

Thank You And Goodbye 2013

     The very first post of gratitude I read for 2013 was from Ms. Toni Tiu of Wifely Steps (click here). I was inspired by what she posted and I have been thinking of what I should be thankful for despite and inspite of. 2013 was both a good and not so good year for me and my family. But since this post is all about being THANKFUL, I will focus on this one, besides I believe that God will never give us a challenge or test that we can't handle.

     I am THANKFUL for my family. My husband and 3 beautiful, loving and intelligent girls. I am thankful that even though my husband decided to try his luck of working overseas, he is doing fine. So thankful as well for the technology that we have because my daughters and I were able to have a chat and see Francis every now and then. Thankful that my girls understood (and still trying to understand) why their father made that decision.

the last photo of my
husband with my 2
older daughters during
our last family
outing

Francis with our youngest
Amaya


     Thankful that the past year the health of my girls were all good, except for few colds and coughs, but over all, their health is very good. Except for me, cause I had Measles, not a good experience that I would like to have again. This 2013 too, I was able to read a lot of books. I am so THANKFUL to the staffs of National Bookstore at SM Lipa, especially Madz, for being so accommodating to me every time I ask for certain books. They will reserve and hold it for days and weeks until I get it it from them.

     Towards the last quarter of the year, I am so THANKFUL that there is always "ads" above the blog header and on the right side of this blog. To others, this may be shallow but for a beginner like me in the world of blogging world, it is a big deal for me.

     Thankful for my immediate family - my mom and brothers - because last November 23, we had our very first bonding moment (after a long time) at Alabang Town Center or ATC. I love each one of you to the core.

this was taken during our
last bonding moment
at ATC food court, with
daughters and niece as well.

     Thankful for my friends, old and new ones. For accepting me for who and what I am. I have different sets of friends from my high school barkada, college friends, mommy friends, and friends I met because of my husband. I am so blessed to have met each one of you.

     Thankful to the Lord Jesus, for looking after my family and after me. Thank you for always being there, for your continuous guidance, I know that you will never leave me, that I am sure of.

     Thankful to Francis, my husband, father of my girls, my best friend. This is the very first time in a long time that we are celebrating the holidays without you beside us. I know that this is what you've been wanting for the longest time. And I hope and pray that whatever plans that God has for you, I know you'll make it big. THANK YOU FRANCIS. You know already what my THANK YOU is for. Always remember that I Love You so much and nothing will change that.

this is the last photo
we had during our summer outing. we
don't have a photo na matino.
hahaha!
     So as I say THANK YOU and GOODBYE to 2013, I am ready for all the good things and challenges that 2014 will bring.

     So from my family to yours,  HAPPY NEW YEAR and GOD BLESS US ALL...

December 23, 2013

DIY Loot Bags For Amaya's 7th Birthday

     A month before Amaya's birthday, I started buying the things that I will be using for the loot bags, the things will be placed in the loot bags. Since my family is not really keen on celebrating such event, hubby and I decided just to give loot bags on her birthday to her classmates. Since DIY is the "IN" thing to do nowadays, I decided to do this as well, with the help of my daughter Joie. So let the pictures do the talking....
Bought this brown paper bags
at SM grocery for 25 pieces
this is worth 52.00 pesos

This Loony Toons and
Sesame Street pencil
cases I bought at National
Bookstore for 29.75 each

Since boys love Ben 10 and girls
love tinkerbell, I bought these
stickers at a local grocery store.

These puzzles I bought
it also at National Bookstore.

these cutie pencils I bought
at National Bookstore at 6.50 each

these small coloring books
with stickers inside, I bought at
a local grocery here for 5.00 pesos each.
These set of pencils with erasers
I bought at a local grocery store
for 13.50 pesos each.
these are some of the
washi tapes I bought at
the local grocery store.
Those long strips, I have to
put glue on it.
So this is what I did with the
brown paper bag. I placed the long strips
on the sides of the bags. Then in the
middle of the bag, my daughter
Joie wrote each of Amaya's
classmates names with simple design.
I also bought sticker paper at
National Bookstore.
This is the front part
of the paper bag. I put some washi tapes on
it too, then wrote holiday
greetings at a small sticker
paper...

     So there goes my DIY loot bags. And I tell the moms sent me messages via Facebook and told me how their kids loved the things I placed in each of the loot bags. By the way, I also put some chocolates and other kinds of "sugar rushed" foods for the kids. Hey it is Christmas so let them enjoy this one.

December 18, 2013

Online Shopping: Elin.Ph



     One of the many advantages of having the internet is the ONLINE SHOPPING. I have done it once before (click here) and now it is my second time to do it. One of the many reasons why I tried Elin.ph is because of the mommy bloggers I follow, usually buys their tops and dresses from them. So while I was browsing Elin's Facebook page (click here) last November, I saw this dress....
Grabbed this photo
from Elin's Facebook page

     And I instantly fell in love with it. Since there was an occasion where I could use it, I went to their website, http://elin.ph/ and I immediately ordered this dress. I entered my name and other important details. Then as soon as I clicked SEND, few minutes after I received an  email from them and their BPI account number (since this is the mode of payment I chose).

     After I have paid, I emailed to them the deposit slip, as a proof that I deposited the payment already. Since the transaction happened on the a Friday (a day before Typhoon Yolanda hit the Philippines), I was able to receive my package on a Wednesday. I was so excited to open, see and fit the dress.


This is where my
dress was placed. Sorry if
gusot na yung packaging
I was able to wear
the dress on the wedding
of my brother in law. I wore
a heeled shoe but during the
reception, I wore my ballet flat shoes.
     
     So how was it? The dress fits me perfectly. I love the jersey typed of material used in this dress. I so love how it looks on me. Even my kids and husband loved my dress. Simple yet elegant. I hope I did some justice in wearing the dress. This will not be the last time that I will order from them. In fact, there is this top that I really love and as soon as I have enough savings, I will definitely order from them again. 



Website: http://elin.ph/

November 25, 2013

Our Way of Family Bonding

     Last Saturday my mom and I planned of having a family bonding because it has been a while since the last time we really went out as ONE FAMILY. Missing this in this bonding moment of ours is my niece Angela Phoebe. As early as 9:30 in the morning the kids and I left our place here in Lipa to go to Calamba, to my mom's place to meet up with my brothers and mom. Around 11:00 a.m. we fetch Mom and my brothers, our destination, ALABANG TOWN CENTER. It is the mall here in the south nearest to our place. It has been a while that my girls and I have been to ATC and the kids are really excited. Anyway, let the photos speak of what a great day we all had.

Before we start our galaan,
lunch time for us at the food court

TimeZone for my 2 older daughters

This is Amaya's favorite game
at TimeZone

Amaya with her cousin Ela

Amaya and her tito Angelo

While waiting for the other kids,
my mom and daughter sat on the floor.

After my 2 daughters bought
something at Just G, we went
down for our next stop

The 2 makukulits of the family
Amaya and Ela

It has been a while since we really
visited this place and we saw this.
Made In Candy

these are the men who does the candy
in front of you. Aliw much!

After 3 hours, snack time
for us. Krispy Kreme for the kids
and the kids at heart. The others,
ate Razon's Halo-Halo

The kids took their picture with the
big Christmas tree as their background

Me and my girls. Huhuhu! My 2 older
girls are really growing up
soooo fast.... 

Pwede na bang magkakapatid kami?
Hahaha!

My first picture... pwede na din
pang-OOTD. hehehe!

Lucky for us, we caught THE Martin
Nievera, rehearsing for his
concert that night.

My 3 handsome brothers whom
I truly LOVE SO MUCH TO THE CORE...

    It has been a fun filled day for all of us. I believe our Mom got tired during that whole day of walking around the mall, just being around each other, exchanging stories and all. I so love this family! Until our next galaan blues...

November 20, 2013

Happy Birthday Ate Joie!


     It was exactly 14 years ago of the same date that I gave birth to my 2nd daughter. As far as I could remember, I was done with ironing of our clothes when I felt that initial pain. Then after few more minutes there it was again. After few more, Francis (my husband) and I decided to go to the hospital already. My eldest daughter was left to the care of my mother in law. If I could remember it right, it was past 10:00 in the evening already that I was admitted then few minutes later I was brought to the delivery room already.

     After an hour, I gave birth to a small baby girl. Despite the fact that I have anesthesia I was aware of what's going around me, that I didn't hear my baby cry, unlike with my first. Few minutes I heard her cry already and I felt so relieved. Francis came up to my room and told me that the pediatrician, Dra. Javillo, told him that our girl have to be supported by an oxygen cause she can't breathe on her own. Hours after, the oxygen was removed. God is really indeed good. The following day, I decided to visit my daughter at the NICU and there I saw how small she really was. After 3 days I was discharged already (Normal Delivery) but my baby has to stay behind for few more days at the hospital and that broke my heart. Three days after she was able to come home with us. 
That is Ate Joie....

     Francis and I decided to name her JOSEPHINE THERESE. Josephine was from hubby's sister who died immediately after she was delivered. Therese was from St. Therese of the Child Jesus. Since my family frequently hear mass at Mt. Carmel church and I usually see the life story of St. Therese posted at the right side of the church, I decided to add the name. Her nickname is JOIE, pronounced as JO-WEE. 

Here is Joie with her Ate Arielle 
     Joie wasn't until one year and a half when she learned how to walk on her own. She talked by the time she was 2 years old. I could say she was a late bloomer on some things and yet she brought joy and happiness to Francis, Arielle and me. Between my 2 older daughters, it is Joie and I who clashes the most. We clash on some things. To be honest, I see myself in her, in some aspects. She is hard-headed (like me when I was her age), she speaks her mind sometimes not thinking if I'll be hurt or not, BUT Joie is funny, intelligent in her own way. She inherited her father's artistic side. She loves to dance, sing, act, and do some art/painting stuff. 

     
one of her many art work that I truly love....


     During the times that landed the lead roles in the theatrical plays at her formal school, I tell you, I am one damn proud mother. Yup, I'm not embarrass to say STAGE MOTHER ako ( I am a stage mother). It was in grade 4 when she landed the role of Gretel, from the story, Hansel and Gretel. I have to admit, I was the one who was so nervous, my hands were sweating. she gave her best at that play. She really cried, sang her heart out yet she lost the best actress award to a gr.5 student. I have to admit, she was so disappointed and I got so frustrated because I know and most of the teachers knew she gave her best performance in that play. She was crushed and so was I. But then again, I have to uplift her spirit and told her that there is still a next time. And who knows, you might win that coveted best actress award.

     Indeed, the following year, during her 5th grade, she won the BEST ACTRESS  award for her role as a villain in the play THE EMPEROR'S NEW CLOTHES. And I tell you I cried when she won. I have never been so proud of her. 

Here she was as the villain
for the play The Emperor's
New Clothes
And finally the Best Actress Award...
       Joie and I may may always clash, have different likes, different things, and wants in life, but one thing is for sure, I AM SO DAMN PROUD of he, of her achievements, of everything. I could feel she may think and feel that I don't appreciate the things she does, but she's wrong. I DO ANAK, I DO.

     Always remember, I LOVE YOU SO MUCH. Your tatay does too and so are your sisters. This family wouldn't be complete IF YOU'RE NOT IN IT. Now that your 14, there will still be clashes between us BUT I hope you will still follow me and be a good girl to tatay and me. Study hard anak, because you have a lot of dreams and I hope (and I know) you'll be able to achieve all of them. I am always here to guide you. Listen to you. Just here for you if you need anything anak. One rule will apply to you, NO BOYFRIEND yet. I Love You ate Joie, continue what you do best and you'll go places that I'm sure of.


     Let me leave you with one of the many conversations I have with her, when she was still 5 (or 6) years old.

      Me: Anak, magmadre ka na lang?

      Joie: Eh ano po ba ang ginagawa ng madre?

      Me: nagdadasal araw-araw. tumutulong sa ibang tao lalo na sa mga nangangailangan

      Joie: as in everyday?

     Me: Yeah. Ayaw mo nun magiging close ka kay Papa Jesus.

     Joie: ndi na ako magmamadre mom, tutal close naman kami ni Papa Jesus.

hahaha!!!


HAPPY BIRTHDAY ATE JOIE!!!!    

November 12, 2013

Bayanihan Once Again

     Last Friday, November 8, Typhoon Yolanda - described as one of the MOST DISASTROUS TYPHOON in world history - had hit the Philippines hitting the Visayan part of the country, particularly Tacloban and Leyte. As I watched the news, it was said that Yolanda or Haiyan, was far more worse than Hurricane Katrina, which hit the United States years ago. After days of the devastating typhoon that hit us, our fellow countrymen are starved for they have not eaten for the past 3 or 4 days. No clean water, no clean clothes and others. This is the time for each one of us to help, whether in small or big ways, it will be helpful. As I watched news and one of my favorite shows in the morning, Kris TV, they were able to tell WHAT ARE THE BASIC NEEDS of each family.

1. FOOD - As the show said, for every family of 4 or 5, a 2-kg. of rice will definitely go a long way. If you could buy canned goods that is an easy open can, it will be better. As for me, I bought corned beef that is in a pouch kind of packaging, so that it will be easier for the family to open it. For every family of 4 or 5, 4 bottles of 500ml of bottled or distilled water is needed. Though it will be too difficult, as for now, to cook instant noodles, I still placed 4  so that if there will be ways for them to cook, there is an available food for them.

2. CLOTHES - PLEASE, do not donate WORN OUT CLOTHES, these people need decent clothes. For sure each one of us have clothes that is NOT NEEDED ANYMORE but still can be used. As for underwears, PLEASE DO NOT DONATE THEM ANYMORE, if you could provide, KINDLY BUY NEW ONES.

3. TOILETRIES or HYGIENIC KIT - These should include: SOAP, TOOTHPASTE, SHAMPOO, NAPKIN (for teenagers), DIAPERS (for toddlers/babies)

4. MEDICINE

     As I have shared in my FaceBook status a while ago, I know that what ever my daughters will be donating is not going to be enough BUT I know that they will be able to feed a family one decent meal. Sharing doesn't have to be grand as long as it comes from your heart and you know that YOU will be helping a family, I think that is far more important than anything.


http://www.redcross.org.ph/


October 21, 2013

Conversations With Amaya

     Everyday our kids usually say the craziest and darnest things that most of the time we, parents, are caught off guard. And most of the time, napapaisip tayo ng, AY OO NGA NAMAN or MAY POINT SYA. Every day I have that moment with Amaya, the youngest among my girls. She will be turning 7 this coming December and I tell you everyday, she never fails to make me laugh. Every time she tells something to me, I usually share it in my Facebook and I tell you most of my friends really find her hilarious and all. So starting today, I will be sharing with you my dear readers of our daily conversations. Hoping that it will make you laugh or smile.

    Here is one conversation that happened just this morning, while we were reviewing for her quarterly exams in Language.


     Grech: Amaya ano ba yan? Nalilito ka na?

     Amaya: Mom, you know why ako nalilito?

      Grech (kinda irritable already): o why?
   
     Amaya: My brain is spinning inside my head that's why I'm nalilito na.

     Grech: ganun?!

     Amaya: yeah mom, ganun?!

     Grech: o sige na sumagot ka na.


     Hahaha! This is one of the many hilarious or funny moments I have with my youngest. This is why even though I am so tired from the whole day of working here at the house, this daily conversations I have with my Amaya is one of my stress relievers. I hope I made you smile or laugh with this one...



   

October 17, 2013

The Sunshine Award: 11 Random Facts

     As I was reading Wifely Steps, (one of my daily reads) post about her 11 Random Facts (click here), which I really find interesting, about herself. And at the end of the post, I can't believe my eyes that I, (a newbie in the world of blogging), was included among the 11 bloggers she nominated. To Ms. Toni, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!

     So before I answer the 11 questions Ms. Toni posted, here are the rules:

1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger.
2. Share 11 random facts.
3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
4. List 11 bloggers you believe deserve some recognition and a little blogging love and push.
5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate. Answer and let all the bloggers know they've been nominated.
6. You cannot nominate the blogger that nominated you.

     So let's get this on! Here are 11 Random Facts about me.

1. I am a huge Harry Potter fan. 
2. I am so addicted to Candy Crush (which I'm on level 210 and still stuck here for days)
3. I hate HEIGHTS, meaning I hate tall buildings and other very tall places, I easily get dizzy.
4. I am afraid of snakes, even just looking at the picture of it, gives me goosebumps.
5. I am a bookworm. I have 2 plastic containers full of books. 

     

6. I am old school when writing my thoughts down, I use the ever reliable pencil and a notebook
7. I am a "shirt-shorts-sneakers" kind of girl, whether dropping of my youngest at school or doing some grocery shopping.
8. I so love going to the wet market (or palengke in tagalog). It's one of my "ME TIME" (hahaha!)
9. I easily cry, whether I'm pissed off, angry, or even just watching movies or tv series. 
10. I am ASTHMATIC
11. One flavor of pizza that I like (and will not get tired of eating) is PEPPERONI flavor with lots of cheese.

Here are the questions that Wifely Steps gave that I have to answer.

1. What advice would you give your 17-year old self?
     The advice I would give to my 17 year old self is to have that BALANCE between studying hard and having fun. 

2. What color makes you look extra beautiful?
     I have this PINK TOP that was given by my husband and everytime I'm wearing it I feel "extra" beautiful.

3. If you could cook only one dish perfectly all the time, what dish would it be and why? 
     The one dish I could cook "perfectly" is SINIGANG NA BABOY, because its my kids favorite and I consider it my comfort food as well.  *wink*

4. Do you think you'll consider cosmetic surgery in the future? Why or Why not? 
     No, I wouldn't consider cosmetic surgery in the future because one, I have low tolerance for pain and another is there are ways how to stay beautiful (or fit) without resorting to cosmetic surgery.

5. Have you ever been so involved with a tv show you cried when the season/run ended? 
     One of the many tv shows that I followed that made me cry when it finally said goodbye was FRIENDS, especially the scene where they have to leave their keys.  *sniff*

6. Who's a fictional character you'd like to best-friends with? 
     The fictional character I'd like to be best friends with is Augustus Waters from the book The Fault In Our Stars because at the young age he knows more about what LIFE is. 

7. What's the first thing you do upon waking up? 
     Combing my hair is the first I do upon waking up.

8. How superstitious you are? 
     There are some superstitions that I do believe in, and there are others I don't believe in.

9. What would you like to achieve with your blog?
     Aside from sharing anecdotes and stories of me being a stay at home mom, I want my blog to have its respective followers, be of help to other mothers out there base on my experience. I want this blog to be known - if this is not too much to ask (or dream about)

10. When faced with stress, which do you go for: Fight or Flight?
     When I'm stress (tired), I'd rather take a "flight". I'd rather be alone first than do or say something that I might regret later.

11. What song calms you down?
     The song that calms me down (and I wouldn't get tired of listening to) is A THOUSAND YEARS by Christina Perri.

For the 11 bloggers, here are my questions:

1. What 1 books would you recommend that is really worth reading (&buying)?
2. What 3 things that's always in your bag that you can't live without?
3. Choose 1: wash the clothes or iron the clothes?
4. If you could splurge on one thing, what would it be and why?
5. What comfort food do you eat when you're down?
6. One movie that you could watch over and over again?
7. Name your favorite breakfast food?
8. If you're going to have dinner in your house and you could invite 5 famous people (dead or alive) who would it be?
9. Name 1 guilty pleasure that you did just recently.
10. What 1 advice would you give to a newbie blogger, like me?
11. What do you pray at night?

And now the 11 bloggers I nominate are:

3. Alison
4. Patty 
5. Denise
9. Aimee
10. Fleur
11. Jackie

October 1, 2013

Cupcakes... Anyone?!

     Hello! Dear blog readers.... I know it has been a while since the last post I made. The past month was not a good one for me, health wise. I was down for 2 weeks due to MEASLES. Yup, at my age, I did catch it. Anyway, I am glad to say that after a week of full rest, I am okay, back to my normal routine and all. So I would like to claim that this month, OCTOBER will be a good one for me and my kids. October will be good to me.

     So on with my blog post today... Yup... You read it right, CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES. YUM. I am a self confessed chocoholic. So when I learned that one of my co-mommy did a cupcake for one of her clients, I immediately wanted to try it. So last Friday, I sent a message to her via facebook that I would like to order a dozen of cupcakes... Chocolate that is. And she replied that I will be able to get the cupcakes by Tuesday morning (which was today...). I paid 300.00 pesos for a dozen. And now may I present to you the chocolate cupcakes.

the chocolate cupcakes

     I know you want to know how was it? Well, the cupcake itself is soft and moist. The icing is not too sweet, as my daughter said, MOM HINDI SIYA NAKAKAUMAY... I really like it, as in. So the money I saved for buying this is really worth it. I am sure my older daughter will love this too.


     So if you're within Lipa area, here is her number for inquiries - 0918-985-0122 and look for Mahel Gutierrez. Aside from cupcakes, her other products are Brownies (which I really do love too), cookies (different ones), crinkles.
   

August 28, 2013

Arielle: Not A Baby Anymore

     Today, August 28, 2013, is the 15th birthday of my eldest daughter Katherine Arielle, or as we fondly call her Arielle (or Ate to her closest family members). In the past 2 posts, which I wrote a letter for her (click here) and the second was when I posted her pictures when she was a baby up to the time she graduated from elementary (click here). And now I decided to share 15 things (facts) about my eldest. I hope she will love this, and my darling Ate, this is just for fun...

1. Arielle's birthday coincides with St. Augustine' feast day. And according to my cousin who is the senior sacristan in our church, St. Augustine is the BISHOP AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH.

2. Her full name is KATHERINE ARIELLE...
     Katherine - was from the character of a TV series Beauty and the Beast which my husband loves to watch. There's a catch though, I never knew that the main character's name starts with a C. I just assumed that it began with a K.

     Arielle - was from one of my favorite cartoon movie, THE LITTLE MERMAID, Ariel. Ever since I was watched this, I claimed already that name for my first born child. Since the name is spelled like it was meant for a boy, I decided to add -LE at the name...

3. At the age of 3 and a half, my husband and I decided to enroll her in the nearby barangay day care center. I am one proud mom cause every time I fetch her, she has all these stars stamped on both of her arms. Her favorite toy, is  PUZZLES. You could do 2 or 3 puzzles at the same time and you could finish them in just minutes.

4. At the age of four, she began to watch her first ever movie, HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE. From then on, she had her fair share of Harry Potter movie collection...



Arielle's Harry Potter collection


5. Music wise, at the age of 5, she started listening from boy bands like Backstreet Boys, Westlife to Josh Groban and Michael Buble. And now, as a pre-teen, you introduced me to such singers like Taylor Swift, Green Day, Paramore, and others. Yup she loves listening to different types of music.

6. One of our favorite past time when you were like 6 or 7 was watching Meteor Garden. Arielle, her sister Joie and I went crazy over these group as well. If I am not mistaken you're crush in the group was the White "chinito" guy (sorry forgot the name already).

7. Arielle's favorite vegetable of all time is Squash (kalabasa). She started eating the mashed squash at the age of 1, and probably this is why she has a good eyesight.

8. Arielle's nickname is NINA. I took that nickname from one of the many movies of Jennifer Aniston, while I was pregnant with her. Though it didn't stuck with her, that nickname belongs to her.

9. If Arielle, is QUIET, as in not in the mood to talk, it's either she's PISSED OFF, DISAPPOINTED, or ANGRY. This she got from her father.

10. Just like me, she loves to write. She would write things randomly. And because of this, she was part of the ESLC's school paper from grade 4 to grade 6. Some of her writings were published there as well.

11. Since she was in grade 1 until she graduated from grade 6, she just had one crush. Yup, one. hahaha!

12. From the "one length" style of her hair, all of a sudden she decided to have a haircut just like Pauleen Luna's hair...

Her used to be long hair

And here is Arielle's hair cut, she is
the one in white...




13. She has her own collection of books and it is still growing.


These are growing collection
of books. 
14. She is one stubborn, "makulit" and jolly young lady but despite of it all, deep inside, she is one hell of a young lady who knows her priorities in life.

15. One of your dream is to go to London/Paris.... I know that books and Harry Potter has influenced you on this, and I know one day, you will be able to go there. 

     So to you, our Ate Arielle, Happy 15th birthday! Continue to be a good girl to me and to your tatay. Be a good older sister to your siblings. Enjoy life while you're still young. "LOVELIFE" will come to you when you're ready my dear. And besides, your Tatay isn't really ready for that yet.

    We love you so very much my dear....