Saturday, May 29, 2010

On submission...

I read this before but I can't remember where. =P It says :

" A woman does not yield to a man because she is weak. She yields because she has found the place, that safe place in which to entrust her dreams, to lend her strengths and find her vulnerabilities protected. "

Nice no? =)

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Art of Letting Go...

I was 16 when I first had to let go of my best friend to move to Guam where her mom was based. She has since moved to Las Vegas with her own family but we are still in touch. It hurt then coz I was gonna miss her big time but I am ok now. In the times when she'd visit, it would be like we never parted at all and thank God for technology, it is easier to keep in touch. Since then, I have had to let go of my own real sister and my other sisters to go follow their hearts. I miss them. I have to be honest though that it is still not easy and I still cry whenever we have to part. I always thought I would be the one to leave but I'm still here and they have gone. I've always thought it was hard on the part of those who will be left behind but come to think of it, it may be harder for those who have left as they adjust to a new place, new environment without their usual supporters (families and friends) to back them up. Of course, they have their spouses with them but that is another story.

I will have to let go of another sister-figure soon to join her beloved. No, we are not saying goodbye. Its just geography! Rather, we will hug and say see ya! Yes, I will miss her but I know we'll see each other again soon and till then, there will be chats, emails and webcam conversations to keep us together and I will be ok.

My Travel Bucketlist...

I am a certified wanderlust... I just love to travel. I feel spoiled by both my heavenly and earthly father for the opportunity to go and I am just so thankful. I'd like to think the world is my classroom. I love learning that way (Expensive huh?). It's about seeing the real thing, knowing about its history and experiencing their culture even in a short moment. Beats any world history books and any class. And its very true that you are inclined to appreciate it more when you are a bit older versus when you are younger. When I watch movies now and I see the sights where I've been too, it makes me reminisce the experience of just being in that place. Everything feels like a dream.

I'd like to share my Travel Bucketlist. Places I have yet to cross off my list. Places I'm aiming to visit someday to see the sights and to visit relatives and friends.

1. Australia - Sydney, Melbourne, Gold Coast and Brisbane -
2. Greece - Santorini and Athens -
3. Egypt
4. Dubai
5. Istanbul
6. Portugal
7. Russia - St. Petersburg, Moscow
8. Guam
9. Bali, Indonesia
10. Kota Kinabulu
11. New Zealand
12. Hawaii
13. Las Vegas
14. Milan - Lake Como
15.Stockholm, Sweden
16. Japan

From every place I have visited. I always brought home a pin and/or a ref magnet as a souvenir. Someday, I hope pins and magnets from these places would be part of the collection. =)

Ice Cream with a Twist

Two weeks ago we had a potluck dinner/housewarming event in a (newly-married) friends house. I love intimate get-togethers like this. Catching up, playing a boardgame (yes, we are a competetive bunch) and of course, the highlight - the eating part. I was so stuffed - thank you guys. What we brought was something new for the palette. Because its been a very hot summer, we thought of bringing 3 varieties of ice cream to share with the group. One was 'Foods for the Gods" Ice Cream that was to die for, I swear! ( Love the abundance of the walnuts in that!) Being in the company of adults, we also did not hesitate to bring 2 pint size of Ice Cream laced with 5-7% alcohol. One flavor was named "OMG" (as in Oh my God) but was actually Chocolate Ice Cream laced with Baileys. The flavor was quite strong but it tasted great nonetheless. The other flavor we brought was "After Midnight Mint". It is actually Chocolate Mint Martini Ice Cream in which I actually tasted the Martini more than the mint.

This afternoon, I had a taste of their "Strawberry Martini" flavor. It tasted great. I actually thought I was eating strawberry ice cream.  There are other flavors I have yet to taste. Now, please don't think I am turning into an alcoholic here... Thing is, I am planning to serve these ice cream with a twist in a bridal shower i am organizing 2 weeks from now. I am still trying to figure out which is best to be served.

I personally think this is an awesome unique idea. Great for parties and get-togethers. You get to enjoy cocktails and ice cream together all the same. For the Win!

You can order these goodies at Lickueur Adult Ice Cream. They actually have the following flavors : OMG, After Midnight  Mint,  Chocolate Orange Martini, Butterscotch Amaretto and Margarita. A half gallon equal to 25 scoops costs P 1,375 while a quart (equal to 12 scoops) costs P700.  You can place your order by dialing 0917-850-2702 or 502-2700 and look for Ms. Pinky Ileto. There are 2 pick up points,  one in Makati and one in Greenhills.

Friday, May 21, 2010


Last Thursday, upon the invitation of a good friend, Ayda Ursua, I went to SM Makati to check out the launch of their Crafts for a Cause campaign for Kultura Filipino. Kultura Filipino is the subsidiary of the SM group of companies which showcases and promotes locally-made products and has branches in some SM outlets such as SM Makati, Megamall, Mall of Asia and SM Cebu. Crafts for a Cause is a program that retails products from livelihood programs from non-profit organizations to help them be self-sustaining. Here are some items which I really liked.

Check these stuff out in Kultura outlets. Great ideas for your own home and to give as presents especially when travelling abroad. By doing so, you are patronizing and showing off our world-class local product (love our own diba?) and somehow helping with our economy by supporting the livelihood projects that are behind it.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


Hmmm... I can't for the matter think how I will write this blog about trade-offs. Its something I've been observering for a couple of years now to somehow be true and not on a positive note. I think about a friend who starts comparing himself with others and rants "He is younger than me, why is he more successful? ",  "I'm more hardworking, why is he luckier?", "You guys are so lucky to be born with a silver spoon and you don't have to work too hard to get what you want".... Sounds familiar? I hear that all the time and I start thinking... whats wrong with you people?

We all have our race to run. Our situations are all different, we all have loads and baggage we carry around with us in varying degrees. Why are you looking at someone else's life instead of focusing on your own? Why will you be envious when what you see is just icing on the cake? The good things. You may not know what is in the other side of the fence. For all you know, the trade-offs are much more than you can handle. A wife who may have all the money to buy the things she wants but she is not happy with her philandering husband.... Someone with a famous family name but the family is dysfunctional - fighting over old money... A perfect couple who has everything but couldn't have a child... things like those are the real trade-offs. Would you still want to be in their shoes?

Life is not perfect. Stop looking at the other runners of the race, focus your own and don't compare. Choose to count your blessings and be thankful for what you have instead of whining how heavy your cross is and complaining about what you don't have. Paradigm shift can make all the difference between content and discontent.

There, I finished this piece... =)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Jejemon craze...

According to Wikipedia :  It is a pop culture phenomenon in the Philippines. Yikes! Urban Dictionary gives its definition as : one "who has managed to subvert the English language to the point of incomprehensibility and online lynch squads." They say it originated from shortcuts to SMS or text.

Consider this for example : " iMiszqcKyuH"  - means I miss you
                                         " yuHh" - means you
                                         " lAbqCkyOuHh" - means I love you

They think its cute... nor it is funny.Duh? I don't think so. Its downright irritating and annoying. Very low class. I'm sorry but its my personal opinion. Don't hate me! I simply have the right to express my opinion as much as you do. What good would this do in the long run? Nothing at all. You will loose your ability to spell correctly and it certainly will not improve your oral and written English Communication Skills that will be helpful when you apply for a job or conduct business. Why allow our communication skills to deteriorate when the aim of education is to improve how to express ourselves? I think its idiotic - plain and simple and something that should not be tolerated.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Price of Urbanization

I miss the old Baguio... I miss the old Tagaytay, back in those days when the air was fresher, the climate was cooler, the view was better and more scenic, less polluted, less populated, no traffic, when there was less noise.

Once upon a time, it was an ultimate dream to have a weekend home in Tagaytay - at least closer to the metropolis (only an hour away), a refuge, a sanctuary. Now I'm not so sure. I still like going to Tagaytay  In fact, we just celebrated Mothers Day there a few days ago in Antonio's. I used to enjoy looking at the scenery overlooking Taal Lake, now it is covered by establishments. Not that there is something wrong with that but these establishments are the same ones you see around the Metro. Why go to Tagaytay to enjoy them?  (I don't need to mention what those are assuming you know by now.) Its much better to try out authentic restaurants/cafe's which you can't find in Metro Manila. My dad shared that during the Marcos era, it is prohibited to put establishments that covered the scenic view. How I wish it was retained that way! It was traffic and Hot! Understandably, its a weekend and its Mothers Day so I guess there were other families just like ours who opted for a quick getaway to celebrate.

Just two months ago, We were in Baguio - considered the summer capital of this country. Surely, there wasn't much difference than how it was last year (the last time I went up before this) but it surely was a different Baguio from about 10-12 years ago. It used to be ok to park your car along Session Road or walk along it without the fear of  having something stolen from your car or pocket. Now, it smells, its congested and filthy. So many houses in the valleys not like before. Like Tagaytay, you can find establishments here that we have in Manila. The old Baguio didn't need a mall then, now, there is SM. I'm not saying there is something wrong with that. There used to be no need for color-coding, now they implement the scheme because it was just too much. Too much cars, too much people and its not that cold anymore and it wasn't even summer yet. Can you imagine being in Baguio during holy week or summer vacation? I can't and rather I won't. I just find it stressful. I'd rather have a staycation... I am not one who loves the crowd.

Modernization or Urbanization for that matter is not bad. Especially good for the capitalist who invest on it. But there is a price to pay definitely... pollution, population, climate change and the list go on....

Baguio (Session Road) then...

Software problem?

Ok, this is nothing but vent... Sorry. Its just that its frustrating when this early, I can see a looming 'software problem' - by that i mean communication issues with somebody dear. I just don't get it how we can speak the same language and somehow, he doesn't seem to get me. Like maybe one of us is not on the same page, merong nauuna, may naiiwan. Maybe, we are on the same page but are on different books? Aargh.... Maybe, He badly needs to learn the art of listening and not merely hearing or is it me? Communication requires a process that you have to think and absorb what is said before one answers back or reacts. Its something that has to be worked on, seriously!!!!!! EFFORT... EFFORT! God have mercy, I pray we would be able to communicate better....

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Hand that rocked the cradle...

Forgive me for being in such a sentimental mode because Mothers Day is coming up. Earlier I wrote about my mom who I lost at the age of 7. I am truly grateful that God provided Mother-figures in my life since that time some 30 years ago even up to the present. One of those is my lola (my maternal grandmother) - one closest to my heart who I remember with fondness. I wrote this in my journal way back when there weren't blogs yet. A fitting tribute to this very special woman :

The hand that rocked the cradle is usually referred to as a mother's hand. In my case, it is my Lola. Lola assumed the role of a mother to us when mama passed away. She promised her daughter in her deathbed that she was going to take care of her children and she made true her promise until her last breath. Lola loved and doted on us much that she was often accused of favoritism by her own children and some grandchildren. Lola filled that void left, gave us the love, care and security that my mom should have given had she lived.

Lola is a beautiful woman. She was called " Elizabeth Taylor of Davao" or " The rose of Tagum " in her Hayday. She was like Imelda Marcos (Former First Lady), the way they dress, they way they were always made up. She had very good skin and she took care of herself really well. " Flawless", that is a good way to describe her beauty.

She was glamorous and stylish. Truly, taste is something one is born with. She has excellent taste in clothes. She wore beautiful jewelry. Her bags and shoes were signatured. She rocks!

She was all about cleanliness and order. From herself to her homes in Davao and Manila - Spic and Span. Even when she was sick already, she was forever changing her dusters, washcloth, diapers, underwear every two minutes because she felt it was dirty and soiled when its not. She gargled 3 pitchers of water at a time - no exag. She doesn't even go to dialysis without make-up and perfume. Sobrang Vanidosa.

My Lola had a personality to boot too. She is spunky. She speaks her heart and mind not minding how she comes across. She doesn't care what people might think and say. When she makes decisions, she stands by it. She knows what she wants and what makes her happy. She is strong-willed too. Inspite of 2 close calls and a stroke that left her half-paralized in her later years. She would go through her dialysis thrice a week. It was not easy but she lived through it till it was time to rest.

Lola was a christian. She was a Pastor's daughter and sister. I would see her read her bible and do her quiet time every morning growing up. She would play praise songs on the piano. Her favorite piece is " How Great Thou Art.". She instilled the value of attending service as the first order of the day on Sundays to me. (Which is why I always preferred to attend 9 AM service and I do my quiet time at the start of the day too). Lola was also generous to her spiritual family. She was very supportive to church members and gave a lot to her church. (UCCP).

My Lola had a big heart. She was helpful and generous. That is what her friends will always remember her for. That is how she earned the loyalty, love and respect of those who served her through the years. She was simply there in their time of need. She was very giving to her siblings too. She was blessed because she blessed others.

Lola was LOVE personified. She loved deeply with intensity. She expressed the highest form of love by loving unconditionally and showing it by giving one of her kidneys to prolong the life of her child. Because of her, I was not an only child, my mom was able to bear 2 more children and lived longer. Lola's kidney extended my mama's life to another 7 years. Dad and my siblings are forever grateful for that kind of love she gave and her kindness.

Lola was also motherly. She may not be the type who cooks but she took care of our needs, gave us baths, personally attended to us ( even when we had yaya's) when we were sick. She created a safe refuge where Love and security abounded in her presence. Like a typical grandparent, Lola was our "kakampi". I clearly remember she told me once before that whatever happens, she will always take my side, even up to now.=)

I was always close to Lola. As a child, I used to sleep between her and lolo in their big bed before my siblings took that place and I started sleeping in the folding bed that was set up beside her side of the bed. Even as an adult, I'd still sleep beside her when I would go visit her in Davao. We'd pray together, hold hands, snuggle and sleep. Lola always bought me stuff as a child. She would also ask my yaya to bring me to the village gate where she would pick me up and take me along wherever she goes. She did this to avoid jealousy among her other grandchildren. I developed the love for Japanese food because of her influence. We loved eating in Kimpura and Tempura Misono in Hyatt back then.

Lola also taught me life lessons by sharing her experiences. Her journey was not easy at all and she's been through a lot. I understand her completely. Lola always told me to marry for love and not for any other reasons. Sigh.. she didn't live long enough to see me walk down the aisle. When I do, I know she will be looking down from Heaven with the biggest smile on her face.

I am who I am now partly because of her. Lola helped my dad raise us up. Loosing her felt like loosing my mother all over again. But I accept Gods will wholeheartedly. I am thankful for the life that she lived and also thankful that God loved her and freed her from all her sufferings.

I will always be thankful for everything she did and gave. I had a happy childhood inspite my loss simply because she was a big part of it, trying to fill the void. I will always love her beyond measure. Love transcends even in the afterlife. That's how strong it is. The tie that binds us can't be broken and she will always be a special part of me. I know she is just waiting in the other side to welcome me when my time is up.

I miss and love you Lola. We will meet again someday... Happy Mothers Day to you!

Because its Mothers Day...

Hmmmm.... I really can't relate to how it feels to be a real mom yet. I am single (not even a single mom-hahaha). I do know how it feels to take care of a bunch of peeps - my spiritual children - grown-ups actually. It is a privilage to partner with our God in helping them in their walk. I do look forward to one day cradling a baby (not just one) in my arms someday. There are times when I go into panic mode - " Lord, I am not getting any younger... will I ever have children? " but time and again I am reminded that nothing is impossible with God. Sarah - wife of Abraham had a child at a late age ( and I don't think God will make me wait that long... hehehe). God is never late and His timing, not mine is always perfect so I praise Him and thank Him that He always fullfill his promises.

I lost my mom to kidney failure when I was 7 years old. My brother was only 3 years old and my sister was practically a baby at 2 then. Back then I felt deprived. Envious of classmates who had mommy's who picked them up in school, took care of them, bought them things. I had a yaya and a dad who juggled his dual role at the same time and I am thankful. I have gotten over that feeling of deprivation now.

Sometimes, I think maybe things would have turned out differently if my mom were alive but what is the point now? Every child will always be in need of their mother no matter how old they are. She was not physically present in every milestone I have in life nor she will be seen on further milestones we will ever experience but I know she is watching over us. She will not be there to give me away with my dad  on the day I will wed. She will never be there to hold my hand while I am in labor and when I have my children, She will never be able to enjoy them. But I know she will be there just as she is right now. Now i know... She never really left - just unseen. I feel her Love around. Happy Mother's Day Mama! I Love you.