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Archive for August, 2018


You’re right, this is my month-ender blog.

So what’s great in a lovely morning? What’s so special about seeing the sun’s face and feeling the morning heat while you are drinking a half-cup of black coffee?  What’s s good about just relaxing and thinking about the thousand mornings in your life?

Yes, I am always inspired by  Mary Oliver’s poems. That lovely volume of A Thousand Mornings is a permanent fixture on my night table.  This is funny though, I read some lines at night when I need to get in touch with my inner psyche and think of what life is all about – its wonderful moments, its disappointing days in between and the little surprises that make one smile and shout to the world, you’re glad you are alive and kicking.

“And now you’ll be telling stories
of my coming back
and they won’t be false, and they won’t be true
but they’ll be real” 

I’ve blogged so many times about Mary Oliver’s thoughts and words since I discovered her a few years ago.  Her words are simple but sometimes they cut deep inside.

What did August bring? Too  much rain and many provinces and even Metro Manila got flooded.  The last week of  August though was like summer, hot and humid during the day, a little colder at night.  I do hope September would be better, not too many weather disturbances and typhoons that clearly affect most parts of the archipelago.

I am in the middle of reading these wonderful books by Lily Zante, The Billionaire’s Love Story. They come in three boxed sets with three books in each one.  I am on the first series of the third set.  Although I am not much into reading love stories, these series are just hard to put down.  Suspense, mystery, family relationship, they have it all and love of course tops it all. These nine installments  vary in length, they are shorter by far compared to other serialized books, more of novellas.  I guess this is the first time I’ve read a love story in nine series.  I remember back in high school when I was addicted to those Mills and Boons books, I loved those with boss-employee relationships, the rags to riches, the various twists and turns but in the end, it will always be love ‘s triumph over adversities in life.  If you are looking for some light but lovely read, I recommend these books.

August is ending and September comes  near.  A nice weekend to all. Happy September days.

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It’s a sunny Wednesday morning here. Perfect time to spend a few moments in the garden. Yes, just harvested about half a kilo of calamansi (Philippine lime) and gave some to our neighbor.

I saw this lovely meme from one of my friend’s walls at Facebook early this morning. I smiled and thought of sharing it here.

Reading, my favorite activity since I was in high school. Back in my grade school days, we didn’t have a public library in the province and reading materials were  so few and far between. I became a voracious reader when I worked for almost three years during college at my university library as a student librarian.

If those studies are true, maybe I am in the right path. Of course I love listening to music but always, reading takes precedent.  I am on a leisurely read nowadays after finishing the 2018 Reading Challenge at Goodreads finishing 100 books. I am still trying to find good books. I no longer read self-help books, I’ve done that several years ago. I  now prefer historical fiction, sometimes contemporary and YA books too and occasionally some memoirs in between.  Lately I discovered a gifted British author of thrillers and suspense and finished reading two of his books. Presently, I am reading another book by Susan Mallery, an American author who is into romance , fiction and chick lit.  I love stories of families and their own struggles in life, the way they deal with adversities and how they triumph over them.  Though I am not much into romance books (sometimes they are so predictable), When We found Home seems to be a good one, a story of three half-siblings, mothered by three different women with a common father.

Does reading really reduces stress? I believe so.  Where can you find a place you’ve never been to but is so vivid in your mind? Where can you find characters that somehow you could relate to?  Have you traveled the world while reading books?

What are you reading now?

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It’s not anymore surprising that every day, the social media is full of unpalatable news and what not and you won’t be surprised either that these same trolls and the people behind them are doing their best to destroy those so few good-thinking, sensible and seriously concerned politicians  in  the country.

Two  days ago, the breaking news was that Duterte appointed Teresita de Castro as the new Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, same gal who was one of the responsible judges of the court to oust CJ Sereno. What the hell are these guys thinking? Imagine, she will only serve for more than a month because she will be retiring by October 08 and yet she gets all the additional benefits of a CJ. Good luck to us,  that’s people’s money.  That’s clearly a “pabaon”  for siding with  Duterte. She’s known as the “ampalaya” queen in social media, bitter about not being chosen before by Pres. Aquino. Opposition lawmakers have criticized her appointment, they see it as a reward for testifying against former  CJ Sereno.   She’ll be the head of the Presidential Electoral Tribunal where election protests are heard.  Will she be impartial? That’s the big question. People think  it is a done deal that she will favor Marcos’ claim to the vice-presidency despite the fact that  VP Leni  won. A refusal to accept defeat in good grace.

With all their billions, I wonder why the Marcoses  still covet power in the government. They cannot take the money to their graves, sad to say. They cannot buy their place in heaven.  Imelda Marcos wants her son to be president before she dies. Haha…what a deep sense of entitlement.  And trolls are working non-stop.

 

 

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The Sierra Madre Mountains of Tanay, Rizal. Took this shot last Dec. 27, 2009 – my first long trip after my last chemo! Nature-tripping is one of those things that I missed during the long months of treatment – the simple pleasure of enjoying the cool mountain breeze and just thanking God for the gift of health and wellness. Another chance to see clouds hovering above.

Yes I am always fascinated by clouds, those lovely figures up in the sky.

When we were young (my three brothers and I), we used to watch cloud formations especially when the sky  was bright or when it was about to rain. When you watch clouds (I still do), you could see different figures that sometimes travel fast  and dissolve fast too.

Clouds!

Sometimes, they make me smile and dream of big things. Sometimes, they make me wonder how far they travel. Sometimes, they make me think of what life is all about.

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I saw some of the workbooks of Nate while Nissa was patiently making a reviewer for his exams next week. All exercises so far were graded “very good” and perfect.  Gosh, what they are learning now are equivalent to lower grade levels back in our time. I started schooling at Grade I and it was that time I just learned writing my ABC and numbers. To think he is just in kindergarten.

Kids nowadays are luckier than we were decades ago. They have all the advantages of learning materials, crafts and things. They have the advantages of using Google and Wikipedia. Before, you were blessed when you have a set of encyclopedia at home, those volumes written in so small letters, you could hardly read them.  We owned a set of Funk and Wagnall’s when the kids were in their later years in high school but we were not able to make use of them until typhoon Ondoy destroyed the whole box  that I readied to donate in one of the barangay grade schools in our place in the province.

I gave Nate a big bag of Jelly Ace and he used them to count and separate the  colors. He could not still count by two’s since I tried saying “1, 2….4 when he added two more to the two jellies inside the bag. He told me, “that’s wrong Nonna,  you skipped number 3”. The wisdom of a child 🙂

He opened the shower full blast when he took an afternoon bath a few hours ago.  He said he likes taking showers here and sometimes doesn’t like to be supervised in the comfort room.  “I am a big boy now”.  What will you say to that? I agree he has grown taller and gained a few pounds on the two months that we haven’t seen each other.

Did I say that he loves staying in the garden?  And I love learning from him too.

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Three-Day Streak?


Just got this badge from WordPress. I wonder what the three-day streak is all about.

I used to blog daily sometimes but it is only now that this feature appears. Thank you WordPress.  When I am inspired, I even blog twice daily.

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via Those Precious Moments

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It was triggered by playing some gold old music at YouTube. Think Percy Faith, Kenny G. and Mantovani.

Last night, while listening to Kenny G. I thought of the movie Dying Young which starred Campbell Scott and Julia Roberts. Although the ending was a bit sad, I’ve always liked watching it. And the music of Kenny G. in that movie is to die for. Yes, I was lucky enough to find the book by Marti Leimbach but the latter was not as good as the movie adaptation.  I am still listening to the soundtrack as I write this. You’ll surely like this one. I have a CD too of the movie soundtrack.

This afternoon, I looked for some movie theme songs and came across one of the movie adaptations of Jane Eyre. According to Wikipedia, ” Jayne Eyre the 1847 novel by English writer Charlotte Brontë, has frequently been adapted for film, radio, television and theatre, and has inspired a number of rewritings and reinterpretations.” 

I watched the  1997 version starring Ciaran Hinds and Samantha Morton. Come to think of it, I am not even familiar with the actors in this particular movie adaptation. I read the book during my college days and clearly have forgotten the details of the story although I remember the names of the characters until now.  I have to google the summary and compare it with the movie. It was not the same as in the book but I loved it just the same. The ending was different too.

I am really into movies much except when there is one that I like to watch.  One of these days, maybe I’ll read the book again or maybe watch another movie adaptation. Jane Eyre is one of those classic books that is still popular today.

“I remembered that the real world was wide, and that a varied field of hopes and fears, of sensations and excitements, awaited those who had the courage to go forth into it’s expanse, to seek real knowledge of life amidst it’s perils.”

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Busy,  busy  Thursday morning. Several loads of laundry and the sun is not even shining. It is again obscured by clouds.

I was thinking, today is August 23, eight days more to go before the BER months. Aren’t  you excited? Well, I am.  It only means December is getting near.

Gosh, how time flies. It may sound a bit redundant but it really does. Before you know it, 2018 would just be a leaf in the calendar.  And here we are, getting older  but still enjoying what life deals us every day. The little things, the seemingly insignificant things that sometimes we just take for granted really make life worthwhile.

The other day, I spent a little time in the garden pruning our fruiting kalamansi trees, I have to  prune the small trunks touching the steel matting fence. We have to give way  to my growing blue ternatea plants. They come now in blue and white flowers.  I am also excited to plant the mixed Portulaca and  variegated Four O’clock seeds I bought at the grocery store a few days ago.  Just waiting for sunny days so the seeds won’t rot in the so wet soil.

Portulaca or Purslane. Plant them today and they will give you lovely blooms tomorrow.

 

Portulaca is also called moss rose. Although I have them now in yellow and white colors, they only have single-petaled flowers. They are pretty little plants that need only a little moisture to grow and bloom.

I used to grow Four O’clock outside our perimeter wall at the front, but they died after a few years.  They are summer plants too and bloom in the late afternoon (yes, around four o’clock) and early evening. They could be grown in containers too.

Four O’clock. Image from Google.

I bought multi-colored seeds of the Four O’clock plant. I hope they would give me these similar blooms later on.

I am thinking of where to transfer the three seedlings of my Roselle plants. They are still in a pot but they need  a space where they  could also climb since they could grow about three to five meters.

It gives you that nice feeling touching the soil, seeing  the garden plants bloom before your eyes giving you that sense of accomplishment. Somehow, Nature is kind enough to share its blessings with you.

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Pilit man nilang yurakan, pilit man nilang itsipwera sa kasaysayan, hindi na maaalis sa isip ng isang “freedom-loving Filipino” ang kontribusyon ni Ninoy sa ating buhay.  (I’ve always wanted to write in Tagalog but I am not well-versed with it when it comes to writing, I hope this suffices).

Ninoy, you did not die in vain. Below is a picture of Ninoy’s funeral.

31_ninoyfuneral

Since  this morning I watched early clips of Ninoy’s videos, mostly his speeches when he was alive, how he dreamed of a better Philippines for all of us. Watching his rapid-fire delivery and eloquence, my heart bleeds for us now.Those who are in the present administration didn’t value what Ninoy sacrificed for and what he did for the country.

“For seven years, I was not allowed to see the moon and the stars. There were days when they left me all alone by myself. I had no reading material. I had nothing. I was twiddling my thumb. I would walk and walk and walk across my room; it was a room about four meters by five meters, hoping that I’ll get tired. And then when I get tired, I would fall asleep, knowing that tomorrow will be the same”.

 

Ninoy Aquino

 

I cried when I heard the song Bayan Kong Pilipinas after the  Holy Mass held at Manila Memorial Park which was attended by the family of Ninoy and Cory Aquino, their friends and relatives and all those who’ve been by their side all these years.  Yes, yellow is the color of the day. Yellow is the color of sunshine, hope and happiness. I watched Ex-Pres. PNoy deliver his short but meaningful speech in front of the tombs of his parents.

“My friends do not forget that your readiness to suffer will light the torch of freedom which can never be put out. Do not forget that we who are now in the middle of our years must inspire the youth when they are almost in the brink of despair. Do not forget that the purpose of life is precisely reexamining our being, not merely a floating flotsam in the time, in the floods of time. Do not forget, as Longfellow said that we should never be like driven cattle, but be a hero in the strife”.

 

The youth of today  never witnessed what happened in the past but most of them are now quite aware of it.  Although some of them act indifferently, a lot of them are now actively involved.  Nissa was just ten months old when Ninoy died.

And this quote is my favorite:

“I have weighed all the virtues and faults of the Filipinos and I have come to the conclusion that the Filipino is worth dying for”.

 

I am just a small voice but my fervent wish is for the Philippines’ freedom from corruption, weak leaders and dictators.

LABAN.

 

 

 

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