Today I celebrate the gift of life with you. May you always be blessed. I love you so much anak!
Today is the Feast Day of one of my favorite saints, St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina. I am excited to visit him once more. Josef and I will attend the 12:15pm mass today at St. Padre Pio Chapel.
Posted in blessings, blogging, journeys, life, Mama Mary, silence speaks, thoughts, tagged blogging, inspirations, journeys, life, my 1500th post, silence speaks, thoughts on September 8, 2014 | 8 Comments »
It has been more than five years now since I ventured into blogging at WordPress. It took me almost a year before I was able to add something to my lone post (a short poem, if I remember) because I didn’t even know how to navigate the site. I didn’t even know how to pick a nice theme that would go with what I planned to write about. Blogging at Friendster and Multiply before opening one at WordPress was quite easy but I was not able to save all my blog posts there when the two platforms bade goodbye for good. Sometimes I wish I could recapture what I wrote there but thoughts are fleeting, you’ll never know what would inspire you, something good enough to share, something good enough to write about, something good enough to inspire others too.
I started Dreams and Escapes because I wanted to share my journey as a cancer patient/survivor. I dreamed of inspiring people who are traveling the same journey with me, maybe not on the same road but with the same destination, that of getting well and living life without that extra baggage of thinking that we are not hundred percent fit. I was pleasantly surprised that a lot of them found my blog and they come back to update me on what is happening in their lives. That alone is one blessing that I treasure so much. Through the years, it has evolved into an online diary (well, sort of). Through the years, I have shared so much of myself through my short posts and I deeply appreciate the views, comments, likes and finding new online friends.
Life is hard. Who said it isn’t? Life is one long journey of faith, hope and dreams. Into each life some rain must fall so they always say. Sometimes though, that bit of rain becomes a deluge and it’s hard to see the sun shining through. Sometimes, you swim into it without knowing how you will reach the shore. Sometimes, you just stare and remember in some distant past how life has been. You wonder how you stayed standing still. You wonder how you got through the storms. You remember the days you cried. You remember the days you laughed with tears of joy.
I always look forward to this day. September 8 is Mama Mary’s birthday in the Catholic calendar. For the past three years, my blog has registered a tremendous leap and all because of my various posts on Mama Mary. WordPress must be wondering where all these viewers are coming from because they have sent three messages since last night saying that my stats are booming and my blog is getting lots of traffic. And all because of Mama Mary. Though one can’t measure how popular or how good a blog is, having more than a thousand viewers at any given day is so amazing.
Life may be hard but the lovely moments always stand out. The meaningful experiences always teach a lesson. Here I am, standing still.
Posted in Apostles Filipino Catholic Community, blessings, Closer to God, Faith, food, friends, friendship, journeys, tagged Closer to God, Faith, food, friends, friendship, journeys, life on August 25, 2014 | 8 Comments »
“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.” – Henri Nouwen
Henri Nouwen, another favorite writer has exactly describe what a real friendship is – those moments when just being there for a friend would be enough, those moments when just holding their hands is a comfort in itself.
I meet lots of people at the Catholic page I manage with a priest friend and a lay minister, most of them OFW workers from different parts of the globe. Through the years that I help manage the site (it’s been four years now), I have met a few who have become close to me where we manage to see each other once in a while. When we do, the day is not enough to catch on with each other’s news. We share on how life has been but often we talk about our beliefs and our joy in our journey with God. Last Saturday is one such day I will treasure in my heart. Visiting Padre Pio Chapel always gives me a wonderful feeling of peace and happiness and it was even more magnified spending it with a few close friends that I treasure. They call me Ate, Tita, Mommy and Ms. A. I don’t mind really because they are affectionate ways of telling me I am loved. It’s more of sharing and laughter, sometimes we cry at those moments of weakness remembering what we’ve been through, sometimes we laugh our hearts out telling simple stories. We cry, we laugh and embrace each other in a show of faith and love.
Pho Hoa is a Vietnamese restaurant that serves authentic Vietnamese food. We tried their Pomelo Shrimp Salad (the best there is) with a simple dressing, fresh spring rolls, grilled chicken and grilled pork with fried spring rolls, noodles, mango crepe with ice cream, buko pandan salad. I love the banana fritters with caramel. As if the fulfilling lunch was not enough, we had a quick snack at Yellow Cab Pizza. We laughed at some remembered moments during our first two gatherings at Sto. Domingo Church, we talked of catechism 101 (seriously).
Moments of bliss. And when friends meet, hearts warm.
BTW, this is my 1490th blog per WordPress count. Happy Tuesday to all :)
Posted in blessings, Closer to God, journeys, photography, reflections, silence speaks, tagged Closer to God, Faith, inspirational, journeys, photography, reflections, silence speaks on August 24, 2014 | 4 Comments »
You speak of sunshine and blue sky
You speak of blue waters dancing on a fountain
You speak of innocence, of gentleness and peace
While you watch the doves dip their noses and wings
in the blue water.
What a lovely moment to feel serenity within.
There were moments when I doubted You Lord. There were times when I thought You don’t really answer prayers. There were times when my faith wavered and I was lost. Please keep my faith alive and never doubt Your loving heart ever again. I humbly beg for Your understanding, I long for Your love. Keep me in Your loving embrace always.
Posted in blessings, books, guilty pleasures, journeys, life, literature and Fiction, more books, silence speaks, tagged books, Feast of Saint Dominic - founder of the Order of Preachers, guilty pleasures, journeys, life, literature and Fiction, University of Santo Tomas on August 8, 2014 | 7 Comments »
Each day is a stepping stone into future days on the upward path. Enrich each day with gratitude and a time of quiet. – Lillian Marshall
Gosh, you won’t believe this! Yesterday I braved the traffic by taking a commute to visit the book sale at Books for Less in Pasig City. It is right in front of La Consolacion College where my two kids spent their high school so the place is quite familiar. This is the first time that I visited BFL and I was like, “Oh, Oh, I don’t know what books to buy”.
There were so many volumes on so many subjects that I was in a quandary which to choose. Some look practically new with the dust jackets still intact but of course, BFL sells secondhand books. I don’t mind buying secondhand books, I’ve done it for years at Booksale. I only get to buy new ones on the works of authors I am collecting and those lovely editions that one can’t help having on one’s shelf. Sometimes, I just close my eyes and don’t look at the price :) This time though, I enjoyed an hour looking for well-known authors that I like, discovering some fiction books that look interesting. I was able to buy twelve books in all, including a small volume entitled Stepping Stones (meditations in a garden) with lovely flower illustrations on each page. I just love it. I also found another collection of short stories by one of my favorite authors, Rosamunde Pilcher. It was such a joy to see two more volumes of L. M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, classic stories that never grow old with time. I hope I will be able to find the missing three more volumes to complete my collection. There was also a memoir and a children’s book for Nate (which looks new) and the rest are fiction books of authors that I haven’t read yet. Josef told me yesterday to go back there and we would bring the car so I don’t have to commute but he has to buy a replacement for our submersible pump for our small pond. I am comforted by the thought that the sale would end on August 31 so I still have plenty of time to buy books. Did I tell you that I only spent P120 pesos for those twelve books? Each one costs P10 pesos, easier on the pocket, I must say. My book shelves are close to bursting.
Today is the Feast Day of St. Dominic. Happy Feast Day to all of my Dominican friends. Fr. Lovell, O.P. (my adopted son) texted and said that he is praying for and offering his masses for the family. I told him it is a noble gift to be prayed for always. What a blessing! I am sad though to learn that the former Rector of UST, Rev. Leonardo Z. Legaspi, O.P. passed on this morning . He was the first Filipino UST Rector. He was a part of my high school and college life in the 70’s. He died on the feast day of St. Dominic and on his episcopate ordination anniversary, two special events that would make it easy for his friends and family to remember. He would always say “Good morning” every time he meets students at the UST campus. Requiescat in pace. I’ll remember you in prayers.