Archive for July, 2015
Sorry guys, this blog is not about the blue moon. I went out for a while though to see it a few minutes ago but it was partially obscured by our neighbor’s house.
Back when my family was still staying in the province (grade school years, I think) I was always fascinated by the night sky. In the province, it is clearly seen with those twinkling stars that appear one by one. In grade school our Science teacher would draw figures of the constellation and the planets and he would let us identify each one of them. He would say the star Sirius is always the brightest and we should learn to identify the Orion’s belt which always points to Sirius. What fascinated me was the moon. When it’s full, it illuminates enough that my cousins and I would play in our front yard before going to sleep. And I seriously thought that the moon moved while we walked. It followed us everywhere. It will always hide its face among the trees and show its brightest when we reach the open fields. Such ignorant thoughts of the young.
When I was in high school, our trip back to the province was always welcome. I always looked forward to those nights that my siblings and I would arrange a mat on the grass and lie there while watching the stars at night. We would use kerosene lamps for light while eating boiled peanuts and exchanging childish stories about ghosts and such.
I was surprised a few months ago when we asked Nate what he wanted to be when he grows up. And in his excited young voice he said, “astronaut”. I asked Nissa how it came about and she said that they watched a movie earlier in the week showing astronauts. One time, they left late during a visit, he looked at the sky and said “bye moon, bye stars”. He used to be afraid of the sound of airplanes when he hears it but when he experienced riding on one last year during their five-day vacation in the South, he would always look at the window when he hears an airplane passing by. Children learn more through experience, right?
By the way, Mr. Wiki says a blue moon happens when there are two full moons in a single calendar month. I looked at the calendar and there are two full moons this month, last July 2nd and today.
Have you seen it yet?
Posted in book reviews, books, flowers and blooms, journeys, reading, tagged book review, books, family life, flowers and blooms, journeys, Leo Tolstoy, life, month-ender blog, reading, thoughts and ramblings on July 30, 2015| 8 Comments »
July is getting to a close and it was so uneventful it was kind of boring month. I spent a big chunk of it taking care of Josef for a few days then I got sick too and it was kind of hard to get back to normal. I don’t usually complain about the weather but it was also weird that this month was like summer, so hot during the day and there is the usual thunderstorm in the afternoon or early evening.
My plants are probably getting confused although they enjoy the afternoon and early evening shower. A week ago, my lone gardenia shrub started blooming again after it showed its last bud second week of June. If there is one thing that gave me joy in this dull July month, it was the flowers blooming in my garden. My rain lilies are showing off and my Vinca/periwinkle plants are showing a lot of blooms too. One good reason to visit the garden. We haven’t trimmed the carabao grass for more than a month now. I get lazy just looking at it and keep postponing the hard job of weeding and trimming. I need a gardener to replant my peanut grass in front of the house.
I had a lot of time to catch up on my reading. I am half-way through reading one of the classics Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy but in between I read contemporary and chick lit novels. I am finding it hard to pronounce all those confusing Russian names in my head. Last night, I opened the five-books set from Nissa, all by John Green. Except for The Fault In Our Stars (which I have watched on Nissa’s phone) and made a short review here, I am not familiar with the other four although I heard that there is a new movie adaptation of Paper Towns, a coming of age story that belongs to the set. I’ve been looking for more books about cooking (not necessarily cook books) but novels about chefs will do. I found this intriguing title on Goodreads, Incidence of Coconut Cake. I can’t wait to finish the book and search for a recipe using coconut cream which we have plenty here. Who knows, I might be able to come up with my own bars and cookies using this ingredient.
How time flies! July is ending and another month is coming near. I am praying the month of August would not bring too much rain and typhoons. I hope it would be a happy month. How was July for you?
Posted in blessings, Close to Nature, Closer to God, Clouds, inspirational, life, photography, tagged blessings, Close to Nature, Closer to God, Clouds, inspirational, life, photography, reflections, silence speaks on July 29, 2015| 6 Comments »
When the world lets you see its lovely face on a beautiful morning like this.
You are humbled, mesmerized, awed and dazzled.
When the morning brings such beauty
before your eyes.
When the morning sun reflects its light
on these lovely cotton candy clouds,
be thankful….it is enough!
Posted in books, guilty pleasures, journeys, life, reflections, silence speaks, thoughts, tagged a bit of myself, journeys, life, prayers, reflections, thoughts, thoughts and ramblings on July 28, 2015| 19 Comments »
You might be wondering at the title of this blog post. I smile at the thought of using this beautiful tin box, once filled with pixies, toffees and dark chocolate – a gift from a friend. I remember those days when I was in grade school and my maternal grandma and Mom had one each of those lovely rectangular biscuit tins which they used for their sewing needs. I loved tracing my hands on those lovely drawings (pictures of ladies in gowns carrying dainty parasols and lovely hand fans). Nowadays, there are stores in the metropolis that carry these lovely items without the biscuits inside.
I found this lovely book (I wouldn’t know how to classify it, whether it is a chick lit book or a contemporary one). Think of Sophie Kinsella. It’s a paperback edition of The Someday Jar by Allison Morgan. I was attracted to the book cover, a lovely jar of thoughts that revolves around inspiring life message. I am on the first few chapters but it had me smiling from the start. It gives me the idea of keeping a beautiful glass jar with all the trimmings and full of colorful papers and short writings inside instead of this old tin box that has been with me for a number of years.
Back in 2011, I made use of one of the topics on the daily digest of WordPress, that of keeping an idea box. The wonder of participating in a Daily Writing Challenge was that they suggested topics which you have never thought of. I keep small notebooks on hand, with lots of pens, sharpened pencils and markers. They come in handy when you think of something to write about but that is not practical when you are outside holding a gardening hose and watering the plants or staying in the kitchen while cooking something for lunch. I collect journals too by the way. The tin box comes in handy for those times that you can’t make use of those small notebooks that you keep on your night table. Sometimes, those life thoughts come at the most inopportune moments, they play in your head for a little while and unless you immortalize them on paper, they would vanish in thin air and you can never capture them back, the way you thought of them a few minutes ago.
I just thought of opening my Fanny May tin box and smiled finding a list of books that I want to read, book quotes, cellphone numbers without names, medicine prescriptions, short lines, single words on small scratch papers but what I found so lovely is this prayer. I could not remember where I copied them from (senior moments working here) so whoever composed these lovely words, I will just say thank you.
LORD, in this life, I am often confronted with situations that make it difficult for me to think clearly. Grant me the patience and strength to handle anything I may encounter. Fill me with divine understanding so that I can quickly respond to the negative forces that would try to bring me down. May I find the peace and tranquility and calm that is only found in You.
Posted in books, journeys, Khaled Hosseini, literature and Fiction, tagged Afghanistan, books, guilty pleasures, Khaled Hosseini, life, literature and Fiction, The Kite Runner on July 26, 2015| 9 Comments »
“I have a surprise for you”.
It was quite a surprise alright. My daughter’s family visited us yesterday and it was a day full of happy moments, exchanging ideas, talking about a small business which Kev has started, delving on life’s angst and yes, our talks were mostly about food.
The Kite Runner.
Back in 2003, Nissa and I encountered a new author with an equally lovely and beautiful book called The Kite Runner. The author Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan and his family sought political asylum in the United States where he earned a medical degree. The Kite Runner, his first book was published in 2003 and has become an international bestseller and a beloved classic. Nissa bought me a copy. It was my first time to read an Asian author from war-torn Afghanistan. They released a movie adaptation back in 2007. Nissa and I watched it on the big screen when it was shown in Metro Manila and cried unashamedly while we watched it. I remember giving the book five-star on Goodreads. To summarize it briefly, it is a heartbreaking story of friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant. It’s a story of redemption, friendship, betrayal and lies set against the political turmoil in Afghanistan.
And the nice surprise? Nissa gave me an original DVD copy and I am so excited to watch it again. Hosseini published two more books which are both equally good, A Thousand Splendid Suns and And The Mountains Echoed. If you haven’t read nor watched The Kite Runner yet, perhaps you can give it a go and you will surely enjoy it.
“It may be unfair, but what happens in a few days, sometimes even a single day, can change the course of a whole lifetime…”
Yes, I know. I could do with three more hours of sleep but it’s hard go back to bed. Here I am, drinking a hot cup of green tea and lemon with a delicious butter mamon from Red Ribbon which Josef’s girlfriend brought yesterday. The past days, we lived on take out food and what Jovy managed to prepare when she was here. My appetite for food is not back yet so I eat fruits mostly. It makes my stomach ache sometime but it is the only food I can tolerate for a while, without that bitter taste, forcing a tablespoon or two so I can take medicine. I’ve been sick again. the past four days have been real agony for me – high fever (it reached a high 39.5 C), body malaise, achy joints, gargantuan headaches and runny nose that developed into a full-blown cold. The other week, Josef was at the hospital for some lab tests and x-ray. Everything was normal except that upper respiratory tract infection. He said the emergency room was full. This is that time of year where the change of weather brings the flu virus out with a vengeance. A few days later, that pesky headache reared its ugly head and I had fever for three straight days without break. Have you ever experienced perspiring from head to foot but you felt so cold and your skin was clammy and felt like ice water was poured down on you? It was frightening.
I sleep every night clutching my rosary, it’s the only way I could sleep but sometimes I feel guilty that I could not finish the five decades. I could hear one of my friends saying now, it is okay, the prayer intentions are good. Yes I know, I always pray for good health for the whole family, for friends and relatives in general and I always believe in the adage that health is wealth.
It’s a little surprising to see a steady rise on my stats here despite not being updated for almost a week. And I am dying to read all the blog posts on my reader feed when I am well enough to stay in front of the computer.
Will you pray for me? Thank you so much.