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Archive for April, 2014


It seems like the month of April is rapidly fading into oblivion. I used to blog about beginnings and endings of each month but I got tired of it eventually. There was nothing that significant about this month except the canonization of the two Popes that I admire and yes, seeing Obama speaks  to the Filipino people. I think  during those almost two days that he was here, the Filipinos loved him more than they did PNoy.  I remember, I met another online friend  (one of our newest admins at our Catholic page) who came over to visit me two weeks ago. The month really seemed to have come and gone too soon.  I am grateful though that I was able to update my TBR list, read a few books from unfamiliar authors and posted short reviews at Goodreads.  When I’ve finished what I am reading now, I would go back to e-books. I still have around ten books there that I haven’t read. Lately, I came across  Josephine Cox and Elizabeth George. Cox’s Whistledown Woman and The Beachcomber are quite engrossing, although some reviews at Goodreads are quite disappointing.  I don’t base reading a book on previous reviews because I prefer to explore it on my own.  This is the first time that I got hold of one of Elizabeth George’s books. I found her personal page and read about how she wrote those mystery novels  (in a series, that is).

May is such a lovely month, they call it  the month of flowers. We don’t have spring season here but summer always brings lovely new blooms in my small garden. Never mind the inevitable heat that we have every day (you’ll get used to it when you live here), never mind your exposure to the sun’s rays when you are brave enough to go out  and do some errands that need to be done, just don’t forget your umbrella and a handy fan in your knapsack  to beat the heat. In a few months, when rainy season sets in and you find yourself dreading flash flood and heavy traffic, you would wish it is summer again.

Sometimes, I ask myself  “have I become a recluse?” preferring to just pass the days quietly doing household chores, playing with our dogs, gardening when the sun has set  or before it shows its face in the morning, reading, reading to my heart’s content and experimenting with some recipes in the kitchen. Oh well, you’ll reach that age when happiness are just quiet days that you spend doing the things you love, no pressure and no deadlines. Of course I always look forward to the monthly visit of my grandson, my daughter and son-in-law. Those are the times that I really treasure. Nissa tells me that Nate now knows how to say Nonna. I can’t wait to hear him call me Nonna.

I ran out of butter. I was planning to bake chocolate crinkles just for the fun of it. This afternoon, I harvested more than a kilo of calamansi in our backyard. There are more than we could use, almost every branch is thick with fruits and yes, I still have about seven jack fruits to harvest and a few ampalaya for pinakbet. Living a provincial life in the city, wouldn’t you say?

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letter6

Here is my entry for the Weekly Photo Challenge. This may come a bit late but I love the message it brings. Water is one of the most important substances  in our life. We cannot survive if there is no water.

I remember the time I took this shot. My two kids and I celebrated Mother’s Day by dining out and visiting a zoo. Surprisingly, though at that time they were no longer little kids, we all enjoyed feeding the rabbits, seeing so many bird species and animals that we only saw on picture books when they were small.

 

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I am not a political analyst, neither am I into politics but I appreciate President Obama’s visit here in our country. They say he is the most powerful man in the world on account of the USA being the most powerful country. I won’t delve into the nitty-gritty of the whys and the hows of his visit here because I am not qualified to do so. What I saw of the warm welcome, the warm smiles, the wonderful speeches that both leaders delivered yesterday are enough to gladden the hearts of the Filipino people who believe that peace could only be achieved not by arms and golds but through  a sincere dialogue and communication.

It was the second straight two days that I allowed myself to stay in front of the television to watch the canonization of  Saints John Paul II and Saint John XXIII in Rome the other day and the arrival of President Obama yesterday.  I enjoyed watching both. I found some pictures posted by the Gazette of the Republic of the Phils. on Facebook which I follow.

I love this.  he took his time shaking hands with the ordinary Malacanang employees, smiling and looks truly glad to step foot in the Philippines.

I love this. He took his time shaking hands with the ordinary Malacanan employees, smiling and looks truly glad to step foot in the Philippines.

 

U.S. President Barack Obama's inscription in the official guestbook of Malacañan Palace: "I thank President Aquino and the people of the Philippines welcoming me. May America's oldest alliance in Asia always be renewed by our friendship and mutual respect."

U.S. President Barack Obama’s inscription in the official guest book of Malacañan Palace: “I thank President Aquino and the people of the Philippines welcoming me. May America’s oldest alliance in Asia always be renewed by our friendship and mutual respect.”

 

The welcome ceremony at the Malacanan Palace grounds.

The welcome ceremony at the Palace grounds.

 

It was short (not even a twenty-four hour visit) but I saw a glimpse of the man who is so polite  and knows what he is talking about.  Report says this is the eight visit of a President of the United States to the Philippines.

 

(photo credits: Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines)

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He is a mixed breed Japanese Spitz and Labrador Retriever, a gift from my son’s girlfriend.  Yes, it is a “he”  while our Japanese Spitz is a “she”. Although they resemble in color, their legs are vastly different. Kuchi has short legs and fan-like tail while our Noki has chubby and long legs. He is three months old. Now, I wonder how  he’ll look like when he grows a little older because now he is more of a Labrador than a Japanese Spitz. He goes in and out of our screen door as though he owns the place.

Noki2

NokiI laughed at loud when he saw our full-length bedroom mirror and kissed his image while maybe trying to figure out why there is another dog looking at him. This morning while my son was still asleep, he visited his room and put his two front legs at the side of the bed gently scratching him and trying to  wake him up.

He definitely enjoys running around the garden and playing with our two dogs. I tried taking him out on a leash this morning and he was so curious about his surroundings.  He has a big growl like a Labrador but is so cuddly like  a Japanese Spitz.

 

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It was another experience that I will never forget. Jut like the first time that I viewed an exhibit on John Paul II celebrating his feast day almost three years ago, I was given another opportunity to see one, Totus Tuus Tour on the same venue last April 24, 2014.It was held at the activity area of Gateway Mall in Cubao, Quezon City. Totus Tuus  was the apostolic motto of Pope John Paul II.  It is a Latin phrase meaning “totally yours” and expressed his personal consecration to Mary. I am always awed and inspired  every time I have the opportunity to do this. This time, when I saw some of the first class relics displayed there, I cried. The way he touched people, the way he inspired the youth when he was alive  and now, he is a saint. What a lovely journey!

Just like his beatification three years ago, he will be canonized on a Divine Mercy Sunday together with another beloved pope, Pope John XXIII. Unlike the later who is not known much to our generation, Pope John Paul II is so much-loved by the youth of today.  I treasure the only memento I had of his beatification, a rosary given to me by Fr. Louie, a student priest friend in Rome when JP II was beatified. I took some pictures of the exhibit but I am limiting a few here because I have a separate album posted at my FB timeline.

Some of the relics displayed at the exhibit. ©Dreams and Escapes

Some of the relics displayed at the exhibit.
©Dreams and Escapes

©Dreams and Escapes

©Dreams and Escapes

The reliquary where Saint Paul II first class relics are displayed. ©Dreams and Escapes

The reliquary where Saint Paul II first class relics are displayed.
©Dreams and Escapes

©Dreams and Escapes

©Dreams and Escapes

I love this Zucchetto. I could just imagine JP II wearing this on his head. ©Dreams and Escapes

I love this Zucchetto. I could just imagine JP II wearing this on his head.
©Dreams and Escapes

A first class relic - a piece of cloth imbued with JP II's blood. ©Dreams and Escapes

A first class relic – a piece of cloth imbued with JP II’s blood.
©Dreams and Escapes

Another first class relic - strands of hair of JP II. ©Dreams and Escapes

Another first class relic – strands of hair of JP II.
©Dreams and Escapes

The rosary in the picture reminds me of the gift my priest son gave me several years ago which came from the Vatican. The beads are the same and the crucifix is quite similar too. ©Dreams and Escapes

The rosary in the picture reminds me of the gift my priest son gave me several years ago which came from the Vatican. The beads are the same and the crucifix is quite similar too.
©Dreams and Escapes

The Papal chair was the same thing JP II used during his visit to the Philippines in 1981. ©Dreams and Escapes

The Papal chair was the same thing JP II used during his visit to the Philippines in 1981.
©Dreams and Escapes

Totus Tuus Tour

The office of the Vice Postulation for the cause for canonization of Bl. Ivan Merz is blessed to have in their custody various relics of St. John Paul II. From first to second class relics, major to minor kinds, these are offered for the veneration of the faithful. All are authenticated and recognized by the Church Pastors,most especially by the Archbishop of Krakow – the former secretary of Pope John Paul II.

On the occasion of Pope John Paul II’s canonization (April 27, 2014, in the Vatican), the Office of the Vice Postulator of Blessed Ivan Merz has organized the Public Exposition and Veneration of his Relics. From his blood stain and hair strands to his papal zucchetto and part of his cassock (soutane), and other important relics and memorabilia, the faithful will have access in praying before these sacred remains to deepen their love and devotion to our newest Saint.

It was a lovely journey, seeing all these and praying for family and friends.

 

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“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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It is one of those times when you smile at the thought of knowing that you could always find that elusive happiness when you feel so much alone. You embrace the silence of your thoughts and see the beauty of  the world around you.  I always love the sound of a waterfall, that soothing sound that calms the soul.

Happiness doesn’t always have to depend on other people. Happiness is within your reach when you know that being alone does not always equate to being lonely and that you need to be alone sometimes to know your self better, to feel that even if you are just a dot and a mere speck in the universe, you belong. So hold on to your dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem. Who knows, one day you’ll find that your dreams are just at an arm’s reach, palpable and full of excitement.

 

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This is just the thing that I don’t like sometimes because I thought, not writing it would still makes me remember those lovely words in my head. I have a  thought box now, a lovely Fannie May chocolate tin that I saved last month  and started filling it with simple writings that pop up now and then, when it is so inconvenient to sit in front of my PC, explore and write. Did that ever happen to you? Words come when you are so busy doing something else but your thoughts keep intruding, shouting to be written or else you forget. It always happens and no matter what I do, I could not recapture those exact words. It is so frustrating.

Last night, I dreamed of a few lines that I thought I could remember when I wake up. I even dreamed that I write it pronto so they wouldn’t get lost but my sleepy eyes won and now I don’t remember a thing.  I told myself that there will always be more time to capture those lovely thoughts. I wish.

Dreams are sometimes so fleeting, they vanish quickly before you could even say “hello world, I am wide awake now”.

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