Posted in Closer to God, Faith, Happiness, journeys, reflections, year-end blog, tagged Closer to God, journeys, life, reflections, silence speaks, thoughts, Welcome 2015 on December 30, 2014|
10 Comments »
I know some of you would now be counting not days but a few more hours until the last leaf of the calendar changes to another year. We greet each other happy new year. We find ways to celebrate and welcome a new chapter in our lives. We are grateful for the year that is about to become history and welcome with open arms what 2015 will bring.
For those of you who regularly read my posts here, you may remember that I always greet and welcome another year in my life during my birthday and that is self-explanatory I guess. We count the years, comparing notes on what event touched us the most or what experience taught us the greatest lesson. We remember them sometimes with a pasted smile on our faces. Would that be what life is all about?
Being optimistic might mean a different thing from being happy. The journeys we take are sometimes so rocky that we think they are just long roads without end. Strength comes in the face of adversity. We will never know how strong we are until we face something life-changing, something we never thought would happen, something that would change our attitude towards life.
I am grateful for everything happening in my life. No matter how mundane and boring it may seem to some people and trite as it may sound, life is what you make it. Happiness does not come in pretty ribbons and gaily colored and wrapped packages. Happiness comes in simple things – love of family, friends, health, faith and a strong belief that there is Someone up there who will always guide and love you despite your inadequacies and frailty.
I am grateful for the things that happened in the past that hurt me so much but taught me how to cope and how to dream and believe. Sometimes, I am reduced to tears just knowing that I could be strong too and could survive all the upheavals thrown my way. It is the joy in knowing that the days ahead could be better than yesterday.
I look forward to 2015 with anticipation and look back with fondness to the days that I laughed and I cried and been blessed with so much happiness.
A BLESSED AND HAPPY 2015 TO ALL.
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
Read Full Post »
Posted in gardens, life, silence speaks, tagged Close to Nature, Closer to God, friendship, guilty pleasures, home garden, life, reflections, silence speaks on December 29, 2014|
8 Comments »
To feel the soft breeze
to see the gentle unfolding of the morning
to listen to the silence all around
priceless gifts that another day brings.
Read Full Post »
Posted in 2014, blogging, friends, journeys, tagged blogging, journeys, life, silence speaks, thoughts and ramblings, Welcoming 2015 on December 29, 2014|
16 Comments »
There is something nostalgic about it – the changing years – saying goodbye to something old and saying hello to something new. Soon, the passing days would just be memories that we will hug and remember perhaps with a smile or maybe, just maybe with a touch of pain and sadness. No matter how you look at life, there are days when the pain you feel overshadows the joy you show to the world, that all is well, that everything is just as it is supposed to be – happy.
Pretty soon or exactly three days from now, we’ll be stepping into another year of challenges, journeys to traverse, new friends to meet, things to discover. We will never know what is in store for all of us in the coming days. I’ve always written a year-end post since I started blogging six years ago (seven if you will include my blogs at Multiply). I’ve always written about all the important things that somehow made my heart swell with joy, events that left an indelible mark in my soul. This time, I would love to acknowledge all those people I met here who made blogging worthwhile. I may not be able to mention all of you but you are in my thoughts. Blogging would not be what it is without your inspiring comments and like.
My gratitude goes to two lovely ladies from the US (fellow Filipinos) who share their lives and adventures, places they’ve been to, and photographs they have taken. It is such a joy to visit their blogs. You can take a glimpse on what they share here. Wi’s blog is Simply Beautiful. Take a deep breath and visit Lou’s posts, she is into gardening too and features fresh pick from her garden. I’ve learned a lot of country life from an online friend in England. Pete lives in Beetley and blogs about his dog Ollie. Be sure to read his earlier posts, he is a very good and inspiring writer. Thanks Pete for those lovely comments. You never fail to like and comment on every post I make since we became friends here. I only learned of her name lately but it does not really matter. We’ve been online friends for quite a while now and we both love Padre Pio. Kay, if you are reading this, I’d like to let you know that I am also inspired by your blog. If there is someone whose blog posts I always look forward to and who also writes inspiring comments to my blog posts, it’s IT. Visit this link and you’ll know why. He always writes inspiring posts and comes from the Philippines although his family has migrated to another country. I’ve been acquainted with Tina for just a short while but I feel I could relate to her as we talk on life, families, journeys and such. Thank you Tina for making my blogging life one such lovely journey. Meet Laura, another online friend who always visits my blog and shares her writings and food adventures. She goes by the name Sweet Pea To Love. She calls herself The Dreamer Mom and she takes lovely pics of her daughter Maia. Cel, I hope someday I could meet you too.
Finally, my blog registered almost a 1,000 followers, thank you so much. Visits keep growing every day, a total of 305,550 as of this writing. Thanks again 🙂 I am glad you find something worth-reading here. And before I end this blog, I would like to wish you all a HAPPY AND BLESSED year ahead. May we all find meaning in life’s dreams and escapes.
“It’s good to take counsel from the past but not to be ruled by it. Otherwise we end up using today to fight yesterday’s battles and miss tomorrow’s promise.”― Richard Paul Evans, Walking on Water
Read Full Post »
Posted in Christmas 2014, family, family life, guilty pleasures, Happy Birthday Jesus, photography, silence speaks, tagged Christmas 2014, Closer to God, family life, Mickey Mouse, Our precious bundle of joy, photography, silence speaks on December 25, 2014|
11 Comments »
“You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
Please indulge me. I promise I won’t be talking about Christmas anymore until next year. Where was I? Ah, the beauty of seeing Christmas in the eyes of my two-year old grandson Nate. I think he is old enough now not just to make his eyes wonder at the tinsel hanging on a tree or and the nativity set he kept pointing at because we told him Baby Jesus was born today. In his excited voice, he greeted my brother and a close friend a Merry Christmas via Viber and they said that just hearing his voice was enough to make them smile and remember the significance of this happy season in our lives.
He was asleep when we came home from attending the Christmas Eve mass last night but when it was time for Noche Buena, he was wide awake. He kept saying, “dami, dami” while looking at the gifts in one corner with his name in lots of the pile. Nissa gifted him with a big Mickey Mouse stuffed toy, almost taller than he is and some battery-operated toys that he enjoyed playing with. At first he was reluctant to open the big package from Toys R Us. He only saw the back of Mickey and thought it was scary. We were laughing so hard when he finally glimpsed at his favorite Disney animal cartoon character and he embraced it while saying “Mickey, Mickey” in an excited voice.
Christmas 2014 with Nissa and Nate and Mickey of course…
I told Nissa she should have taken a video on Nate’s reaction while playing with his robots and shouting and dancing at the same time – a spontaneous display of joy. Such a simple thing to make a child laugh and smile and hug his mommy back. Every time I see a child’s appreciation for what you give him, it reminds me of how life should be lived – happiness is just within one’s reach if you’ll only learn to appreciate what is around you. We can surely learn from a child.
Thank you so much for all your Christmas wishes and greetings. I am truly blessed and lucky for having you all as blogging friends.
Do you keep a New year’s resolution? Have you made one?
Read Full Post »
Posted in Christmas 2014, family life, journeys, tagged Christmas, Christmas 2014, Christmas celebration, Closer to God, Faith, family life, remembering Christmas past on December 21, 2014|
8 Comments »
Come, Lord Jesus. Come and visit your people.
We await Your coming. Come, O Lord.
It’s the fourth week of Advent, the final week that we have been waiting for. It’s Christmas Eve in three days and then Christmas, the mixed feelings of sadness, of joy, remembering Christmas past with awe and wonder. A friend asked me once why Christmas sometimes makes her feel sad despite that the season is supposedly for rejoicing and feeling happy. I sometimes feel that too, feeling alone despite the people around you. There is nothing like the Christmas celebration of old, the times when you were younger and the wonder of Christmas filled your spirits with joy. Oh yes, I remember.
I remember the days back in our hometown when my cousins and I would attend Misa de Gallo or the dawn mass which we now call Simbang Gabi. Electricity was only in the town proper so we would bring torches made of empty bottles with kerosene. We had to walk more than a kilometer to reach the Church but what joy were those days. We would sing Christmas carols along the way, shout to high heavens that it was too cold but the highlight of our mornings after the mass would always be buying native sweets like suman and drink salabat (ginger brew) or rice coffee from grandma’s kitchen. It’s a far cry from how we celebrate Christmas nowadays, with all the commercial exploitation attached to it.
For some, Christmas is just another ordinary day. For kids, it’s another opportunity to have new gadgets to play with, more toys to collect and maybe some money to put in their piggy banks. For most of us, there are financial burdens that we have to face, conflict with families or friends, endless problems that make us wonder, where is the joy in celebrating Christmas? It does not really matter how simple the celebration is, as long as we remember and be ready to receive the Christ Child in our lives – the message He brings, that of hope and love.
Josef and I attended the morning mass at St. Jude Thaddeus Parish and we were surprised to find the image of the miraculous Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary from Manaoag. It’s been ages since I visited the shrine, now a Basilica in Manaoag, Pangasinan.The church is one of the Philippines’ most widely visited Roman Catholic Pilgrimage sites. Pangasinan is my home province. There were vendors selling religious items outside St. Jude Parish. Josef bought a St. Benedict cross and I bought a ring rosary. We have them blessed right after the mass. The cross (a necklace actually) is for me while I gave the ring rosary to him and told him to put it in his bag all the time. I make rosaries too out of hematite beads and Swarovski crystals and I was fascinated with how these vendors make the rosaries from plastic beads and twines. I love to learn that and it was nice talking to them in our native dialect. I got some discounts because of it.
It was a busy weekend and I look forward to seeing Nate again on Christmas Eve. A blessed and joyful Christmas to all of you.
Read Full Post »