Archive for the ‘blessings’ Category

Maraming, maraming salamat LORD

sa lahat ng umaapaw na biyayang ibinigay Mo sa amin

na kasama si Pope Francis.

For all the inspiring and uplifting words,

for the messages of hope and love,

for making us feel so blessed,

Thank You.

We will continue praying for our beloved Pope Francis.

Please heal our hearts, heal our people, heal our land.

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Early this morning I updated our Catholic page and posted a paragraph from a previous blog about giving during the Christmas season.  When you give, give from the heart. It does not need to be in terms of money.  Give time, some precious moments that would make someone smile, some words that would give comfort to a friend, give time to reach out and show how much you love your family, a hug, a kiss, an embrace, these are definitely priceless.

I’ve always said that prayers are our best conversations with God. It doesn’t matter how simple it is because He definitely knows our needs even before we utter them. Given what I went through the past years, having to undergo life-changing ailments –  two major operations in a span of ten years, chemotherapy treatments and kidney bypass that I never expected to undergo barely a year after I was done with my chemotherapy, sometimes I get so wary of feeling a little low health-wise. I have become so cautious of what I eat, what I do (should not be taxing enough to sap my physical strength) and  the ache and pains that are quite normal for someone who is growing older. I always pray for health more than anything else. As they say, health is wealth and I truly believe it.  Praying for health for the whole family, relatives and friends is number one on my list.

Do you believe in the power of prayers? I do. It’s what keeps me grounded. When you are blessed with something you don’t really expect, your heart shouts with joy and thanksgiving.  I prayed for a little surprise this Christmas….answered prayers.  You won’t believe it, this afternoon I received a lovely gift in the form of  stock dividends from another bank I invested in before I retired from work fourteen years ago. 65% is more than enough for that little surprise that I prayed for.  Unexpected blessings!

When you say “God is good”, Nate would answer, “all the time”.


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Sometimes you wake up and realize how alone you feel and your world seems a grey place. Sometimes you wake up and you  think of the times you were happy in some far off place and it puts a big smile on your face. Sometimes you wake up remembering a dream that keeps recurring and you don’t even know why. Your thoughts are just jumbles in your head. The best times are those moments seeing the beauty of the dawn, when the morning light slowly shows its face and you realize that even in  darkness, you can see the light, a wonderful vista of  twinkling stars. Somewhere up there,  you can see the brush strokes of a great Master and you feel blessed to be alive, to enjoy another day, to drink another cup of blessings.

It’s what I love about gardening, the hours spent quietly in the company of your own thoughts  – the stillness of the moment, the silence of the hour, a therapeutic  contemplation of the days gone by. Yesterday, it rained for a while and my rain lilies were happy. I smiled when I saw a few blooms while trimming the carabao grass. It is always a pleasant surprise to see something unexpected. It puts a smile on your face and the dogs think they are in for a treat. They are happy too when they roam around the garden and bark excitedly at every passersby that they see.

Rain lilies in bloom...

Rain lilies in bloom…

The last two days, I was engrossed reading two books.  Still Life With Bread Crumbs  by Anne Quindlen, my first time to try one of her books, a moving story, a journey into the life of a woman, her mind, her dreams, her career. It’s an e-book and e-books are sometimes hard to read. I read another fiction book , one of my stash from Books for Less. Imagine the joy of not expecting something lovely but it gives you  more than that, a feeling of joy  because you found a treasure.  Blessings! I would like to thank my good friend Pete Johnson for including my blog in his list and wrote an inspiring paragraph about it.  Visit his blog here. It’s a lovely and inspiring read.

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thank you

Gosh, thank you to all my readers out there! You make me proud to think that somehow, I am making sense here. It makes me happy that somehow, you’ve been touched by my thoughts and ramblings.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

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One thing great about unplanned meeting  is that, it almost always pushes through unlike other times when you have anticipated and looked forward to it only to find that it was just that – a plan. You feel disappointed.  Last Friday was one of those spur of the moment decisions to have lunch with the kids. Since it was a  Friday and Josef was still on vacation leave so off we went to Makati to meet Nissa during her lunch break. She needs a xerox copy of Nate’s birth certificate  for their flight on Tuesday so I have a perfect excuse to tag  along.  We had lunch at Cafe France. I enjoyed looking at their display of French bread, croissants, pastries and cookies. My busy mind was at work the whole time I looked at the arrangement on their shelves. I was thinking, “I’ll bake my own Vienna loaf or sourdough one of these days.” I was pleasantly surprised when Nissa told me that it used to be called Deli France and she meant my favorite hangout with some friends years and years ago. Have I grown that old that I never noticed that it has changed its name all these years or have I become such a recluse, often afraid to go out alone?

I used to attend high school reunions on a regular basis but then even that has lost its magic. Seeing my former classmates on Facebook  is now enough for me.  I have my group now, mostly members of our Catholic page where I am an admin. They are OFWs  (overseas Filipino workers) who make sacrifices being away  to earn a few dollars to support their family back home. When they go home for vacation, some of them drop by to see me  and we usually have  long chats on how life is away from one’s family.  I know, I always tell them, I was a OFW wife for more than twenty years. I know what one feels when you are faced with a gargantuan task of raising a family alone while at the same time trying to balance a day job.  Maybe, I was luckier than most to have found reliable minders to my kids back then.

Things do not always end the way you planned. Sometimes, there is a greater force you have no control of. These are those things that make you stronger in faith that you will get through it all.  The richness of life does not always come from good things thrown  your way,  most of it comes from your experience of what pain is all about and how you cope with it. You learn and you learn well. When the journey becomes a perilous path of uncertainty, you pray hard for guidance and God never disappoints.

On a lighter note, I am quite happy that we have finished putting some Christmas decor. Most are recycled and favorite pieces over the years.  I took advantage of Josef being  home to help me hang  the trimmings. I am still thinking of putting Christmas lights on the newly trimmed tree in our garden.  We have this kind of pine  tree that I can’t identify planted near our little pond and I think it would be perfect for that holiday touch.


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Turning 58 at last!

I had a good eight hours of sleep last night and I thought when I woke up this morning, “so this is how it feels to be 58″.  Three weeks ago, one of my close friends came home for a short vacation and she insisted that we celebrate my birthday early since she was only given two weeks by her boss.  After deliberating on where to spend lunch and getting in touch with a few more friends, we finally settled at Vikings, Megamall, a luxury buffet restaurant that serves lunch and dinner but you need to  reserve seats  at least three or two days before going there. It was my second time to eat at Vikings but it was my first time to visit their Megamall branch. Last year, my daughter treated me to lunch in one of their branches in Marikina City. Vikings serves sumptuous feasts of delectable European, American, Japanese, Chinese and Filipino dishes. It is always a joy to discover something new that you haven’t tasted before. Birthday celebrators during the month are free of charge and they even have  this  singing duo to greet you happy birthday with a small cake to wish on. It was fun. The food was good and the company even better, priceless moments of togetherness with friends. Thank you sis Odette for the lovely treat.

At Vikings - SM Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall

At Vikings – SM Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall

I attended the 6am mass at Our Lady of Light Parish and when I reached home, my son was laboring over the hot stove preparing pasta.  He seldom cooks and this was his first time to cook spaghetti. Imagine, having pasta for breakfast with some slices of embutido as side dish.  He asked what my birthday wish was. Nothing tangible I said, just good health and happy moments with the family. Isn’t that what we always wish for? An appreciation of life and what it brings and the many small treasures that we collect as we traverse our journeys, we long for simple things that make  the heart happy.

After breakfast, it was a busy morning going back to the town proper with some neighbors to visit the mayor’s office, had coffee at McDo then went home exhausted to prepare lunch. I cooked  pancit habhab though and had some fresh veggie salad for dinner.  I missed some calls on my cellphone, answered  a lot of private messages on Facebook.  I don’t allow postings by others on my timeline except when they tag me and I have to approve it.  I am grateful for all their birthday wishes and prayers.

Desserts - rice cakes from Cainta

Desserts – rice cakes from Cainta

Who needs a birthday cake when you have this, the best kakanin  in town. Cainta is known as the bibingka capital of the Philippines.  Take your pick, they have it all.

My day ended with Nate’s shouts of “Love you Nonna” and “happy bet-day”. Thank You Lord for the gift of life, thank You for another year of blessings.

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