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Archive for the ‘Celebrating Christmas’ Category


I ordered meat from Monterey for Christmas. They said orders are quite long. Good thing I ordered this early. I also contacted my suki vendor to buy me potato marbles and sugar beets. They’re some of the ingredients I need come Christmas eve or what we call Noche Buena.

I am plainly devastated looking at the photos as a result of typhoon Odette. Many towns and provinces in the Visayas and part of Mindanao are greatly affected. Many houses were destroyed. Our VP and the office of the VP have been ready even before the super typhoon entered the Philippine area of responsibility. But where is the government? Digong is sleeping on the job again. He said there is not enough or no money for the typhoon victims because of their expenses in the pandemic. What a big lie🤨😒🤮. He said a few days ago that he has sacks and sacks of money to spend during the campaign for the election 2022. Is that more important than the calamities visiting our country? I never hear of our Dept. Of Social Welfare and Development doing its job nowadays. What is visible are the volunteers from VP Leni’s camp and the numerous individuals helping through their donations.

WHERE is the president?

It’s my youngest brother’s birthday today. Since they live in the US, he will celebrate tonight. We are advanced by twelve hours. We got to talk via Messenger early this morning. It’s nice to catch up with each other again.

We are on the third day of SIMBANG GABI , a nine-day novena in honor of Mama Mary which will last on the 24th. I attend the nightly Simbang Gabi masses.

It’s seven days to go before Christmas🌲💒🎄☃️

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Yeay, I’m done with my Christmas shopping for the whole family but some of them have not yet been delivered. It is really nice to shop online, either you have to pay in advance by depositing to your Lazada wallet or pay in cash when they are delivered. Did I tell you that I have received credits for my purchase? There are some items too where the delivery fees are waived. You can even earn coins while browsing at the site and they translate to one peso each. I have to review all my purchases so I could earn more.

As I have said before I always purchase kitchen gadgets for Nissa and Obet. One gift for them both. I told Nissa to use them in their new home. As for Nate, I always buy two gifts on his birthday and during Christmas, toys and books mostly. Found a nice book about the history of the dinosaurs and a set of dinosaur figures for his birthday next month. Kinda expensive but he always has the best. I bought some practical items for Josef, Jovy and mom, things that they could use daily.

Last year we didn’t put up Christmas decoration because of the pandemic. This year though, I ordered a smaller plastic Christmas tree which is easier to decorate than our 7-foot one. I also ordered some Christmas decor. Although senior citizens like me aren’t allowed to go out in malls, there are plainty to choose online.

Did I say it’s 73 days to go before CHRISTMAS?

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Reading was set aside for a while. I could not concentrate reading even at night aside from perusing a few poems by Mary Oliver….again!

There are deliveries almost every day for the three of us (Josef, Jovy  and me) brought about by the Lazada sale last December 12.  They have sales every month like 10-10-20, 11-11-20 etc. And since this is also their Christmas sale for the year, there seems to be many shoppers online. Lazada Philippines consists of several sellers of electronic accessories, appliances, toys, groceries, fashion accessories, home and living, health and beauty accessories too, You name it, they have it, all at a much lower price than in department stores with minimum charges for delivery. I have completed my gifts shopping at Lazada. There is one more item that I am waiting for, an electric kettle I ordered two days ago for our use. Lazada is a very popular online destination in Southeast Asia. “The online shopping group boasts one of the largest catalogues of items in the Philippines, with items from different  reliable brands, and are grouped into categories that are being sold in the website and the app”.

Yesterday, I prepared Embutido, a Pilipino meatloaf which  is also a regular fare for our Noche Buena.  Pair it with pancit or any pasta dish, some favorite sweets and  other desserts  and you’re good to go. I made 16 rolls in all. It can keep for long in the ref  without losing its flavor, just freeze it.

This afternoon, I wrapped all the gifts for the family. Jovy helped me with the bigger item for Nissa and Obet. Good thing SM East Ortigas gave me extra wrappers because half portions of the Christmas wrappers I have here got wet during the flood last month.

Last night was a very inspiring 2nd day celebration of  Simbang Gabi.  Fr. Paul, one of my favorite priests at St. Paul was the mass presider. Looking forward tonight for the 3rd celebration.

Take care guys, Covid is still enjoying its worldwide romping around.

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Most Catholics here in our country waited last night with so much anticipation on the start of our celebration of Simbang Gabi (mass at night) and Misa de Gallo  (dawn or rooster mass) early this morning. Simbang Gabi as we usually call it is a nine-day novena before Christmas.  It is a lovely tradition we observe every year. I miss going out at night to attend it this time of pandemic.  Almost every church go online though. Attendance is still limited when you attend personally at the church, receive communion and participate in the prayers and participate in the singing. That is the limitation of attending masses online but you can choose which church and service you want to listen to.

I think, those in-charge of  tracking this Covid pandemic only allows 30% capacity of these celebrations in churches. There is even a directive now starting today that wearing face shields and face masks are mandatory. It used to be where face shields are only seen in malls because they are required by the establishments when you enter. Now, once you leave your house and go to a public place, you have to wear face shields as well with the face masks.

My goodness gracious, they are blind to the fact that most people wear both when they go out. And we’ve been doing it for almost ten months now. Some government officials break their own rules. The present chief of the Phil. National Police even had his mañanita birthday celebration at the height of ECQ some months ago. Are they doing anything? I bet…waiting for available vaccine which is even reported to have been purchased from china.

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Little surprises that make me smile:

  • Long chats with friends abroad through messenger. Listening and hearing their voices – just great
  • A cup of hot green tea on an early morning.
  • Oreo kissing my toes and being just silent besides me.
  • Nates’ shouts of “hello Nonna” over the phone
  • Seeing a new bloom in the garden
  • Getting in touch with neighbors to say hi
  • Finding  a new author with a good book
  • Reading, reading until your vision blurs because you are sleepy
  • Afternoon shuteye
  • Hearing the church bells for dawn masses
  • Watching videos on different recipes one could prepare for Noche Buena
  • Surprise visits from friends
  • Surprise phone calls
  • Lovely and inspiring posts from WordPress friends and fellow bloggers
  • Beautiful comments on your blog
  • Attending Simbang Gabi and watching priest friends with their uplifting homilies online
  • WAITING FOR CHRIST’ BIRTH
  • Being excited for the celebration of Christmas 2019
  • The early morning cold breeze
  • Listening to Christmas music (more…)

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Last night was the start of our yearly Simbang Gabi or Dawn mass.  Back in the days, it used to be called Rooster Mass because  4am or 5am were usually when the rooster in your neighborhood crows.  Simbang Gabi is a beautiful nine-day novena masses in Thanksgiving for all the blessing one received in the year. It’s traditional for us Filipino Catholics. I think it is only in the Philippines where you could find this. Times has changed, nowadays these Simbang Gabi are celebrated early, usually the night before the next day to give way for those who want to attend the novena after office.  They are also brought to some malls where they are celebrated at noon and most offices also hold these masses during lunch break.

I was overjoyed seeing the Pope opening the Simbang Gabi tradition. The mass readings were read in Tagalog  but there was a translator in English. Even the songs were sung in Tagalog  by the Filipino community. I’d like to think we are special because they have adapted one of the lovely traditions in our Catholic life.

Although our country is now in the brink of…..how do you put it….the ship is sinking fast because of these non-performing powers that be in our government, I still have high hopes that this will end eventually and we will rise up again. It may just take one brave soul to start it, right now though, we are at the mercy of one man who holds everything from the Supreme Court to the Legislative Branch to our National Police down to the barangay level. I need not elaborate, perhaps you also read them online.

I digress.

We were talking about Simbang Gabi, right? There are many churches now and several congregations too that televise the celebration of the nine-day novena masses. They end the day before Christmas day.

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Cold December is definitely here.

I went out for a while to sweep the street fronting our house and the sidewalk near one of the village gates which is just at the end of lane at the side of the house, there was this cold wind blowing softly.  Not so used though to the cold especially when you are just in t-shirts and shorts.

But I just love the cooler nights. Imagine this, drinking  a  hot cup of  salabat  (ginger tea) while you are reading early at night or watching a nice film on I Want on your tab…what a perfect way to unwind.  Or maybe munching on those crispy peanuts which you bought earlier when you went to mass….heaven.

One of my friends here whose blog Saved By Words  is definitely worth a read recommended an author a few days ago. Elizabeth is all praises for the author. Luckily, I found three of his books online. Allen Eskens is a lawyer and a mystery writer. I am looking forward to read his first book called The Life We Bury. I am excited when I discover new authors on my list. Always  looking out for someone new since most of the first offerings are such engrossing read.

It is December 10 now in our neck of the woods. The Christmas clock say: It’s  14 days,  16 hours and 33 minutes until Christmas.

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So I am finally counting, it’s forty three days to go before the big day.

Do you know the meaning  and the symbolism behind the song Twelve Days of Christmas? 

Some of us are not probably aware of it. It is another one of those lovely melodies we play during the Christmas season, right? The 12 days of Christmas is the period that in Christian theology marks the span between the birth of Christ and the coming of the Magi, the three wise men. It begins on December 25 (Christmas) and runs through January 6 (the Epiphany, sometimes also called Three Kings’ Day). 

In our Catholic calendar, the Feast of the Three Kings was moved every first Sunday of the year, not usually January 6 as we previously knew.  So it ends on Sunday, January 5, 2020. Here is the true meaning of the twelve days of Christmas. CHRISTmas with Christ in it.

(Got  this from a post of a friend on FB). I posted something similar two years ago. Just a gentle reminder why we are celebrating Christmas. 

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This song was playing in my head early this morning. Today is the third day of Christmas.

♫♫♪♫On the third day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me
Three French hens,
Two turtle doves,
And a partridge in a pear tree.♪♪♫♪

(Photo culled from the net)

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And before the day starts, I  want to greet you all a very Merry and Blessed Christmas!  And Christmas clock says it is 18 hours, 53 minutes.

Thank you for another year of journeying with me.

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