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Alleluia, the Lord is risen.

Today is Easter Sunday.  We say in  Tagalog, “Maligayang Pasko ng Pagkabuhay”. It is not even about Easter eggs and bunnies ( the celebration has been too commercialized because of those).  It is about our Lord Jesus Christ rising from the dead. He paid for our sins by dying on the cross.   It only goes to show that the resurrection is a triumph,  life is more powerful than death.  Here’s to new life, new hope and new beginning for all of us.

We attended Easter Sunday mass early today. The church was full, we sat on plastic stools. Today is also the renewal of our baptismal promises. Whereas before   our godparents  uttered those words for us, today, we said the same words. We reject Satan and the lure of evil in  our lives. We believe in God, the father Almighty, we believe in  the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church. We believe in the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting.

Easter Sunday is celebrated solemnly in every Catholic  Church. The Paschal candle is blessed and lit  throughout the Paschal season  and that is during Easter and on special occasions like baptisms.

Whereas before we abstained from eating meat every Friday during the Lenten season,  one could start again if one wants too.

Happy and blessed Easter to all. Have a nice week ahead.

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We are still observing Easter Triduum which began last evening and will end on the evening of Easter  Sunday. It is the summit of the Liturgical Year. Yesterday, Mom  and I attended the  Last Supper mass  at 5pm. Josef had work so he was not able to attend it with us. this morning though  we were early at the church for the fourteen stations of the cross, prayed the rosary afterwards then took a look at the Lenten procession going on.  The procession is a yearly ritual of our town every good Friday. It depicts the 15 mysteries of the  Holy Rosary.  Looking forward to Easter Sunday which we locally call Pasko ng Pagkabuhay. This afternoon, there will be reflections on the Seven Last  Words on local television. I always watch it which starts at exactly 1pm until 3pm. That’s the only regular program we get to watch during Good Friday. Most programs on this day are a repeat of previous ones. Even shopping malls are closed and some open at 12pm  on Black Saturday. It is really a quiet celebration of the Holy Week.

I get updated again with my reading some inspirational books. Those books that I get to read during Lent particularly during Holy Week.  It’s comforting to learn more about Jesus’ sufferings to redeem us from our sins. We are blessed that we have this yearly Lenten celebration to deepen our faith and say thanks for all the blessings we had throughout the year. Those times that we erred and sinned in the process, those times that we let injustices done to our friends and neighbors, those times that we just didn’t care at all – those are the times that we get to remember today and we repent. Our Lord has taken all the beatings  until he died on Good Friday to resurrect on the third day which we look forward to on Easter Sunday.

Have a blessed Paschal Triduum.

 

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It’s one of those days that I get to trim the carabao grass again. Although they are growing   a little slow because it is summer I need to weed out unwanted grass too.  The weather is just right for afternoon gardening. I am just halfway through,  I still have so many things to do in the garden.  It was quite windy but the sun shone brightly.

Our two jackfruit trees are bearing so may clustered fruits again. I noticed the small  fruits at the base of the second tree not knowing that the first tree has born fruits earlier.  I took one to cook in coconut cream.

The remaining five are now large enough to ripen. They were a little up the tree so we really didn’t notice them earlier.  Maybe in a month or two, I could harvest again. Every year, these two trees give us  fruits. All we do is water them every morning together with the other plants we have here plus the two Philippine lime shrubs (kalamansi)  that bear fruits all year round. They are just perfect for a small garden.  Some branches are in their flowering stage.

I am getting impatient with the lavender I planted late last year. I wonder how long it would take before it would bear flowers. The herbs I  planted at the same time are doing well. Maybe the lavender need not be watered daily but the weather is hot here so I water them every day.  Gardening is really a hit and miss thing. Sometimes you’ll see some flowers resurrecting in the heat of summer. Sometimes there are unknown plants that just sprout in a corner.  I find fulfillment in gardening though just like I do with reading and blogging.

Gardening is also a relaxing activity and growing things from seeds and branches are just wonderful.    You won’t notice the passing of time when you are in a garden. Some of my bulb plants and the Amazon lilies planted in pots are presently in bloom.  Oh to see them bloom again. What a reward!

Do you love gardening?

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I had another play with an app on Facebook.  Sometimes, they hit the nail on the head, sometimes it is just a play with words. Are they just looking in to a few shout outs I made there?

Here’s what it says:

Not everyone knows the fights you have had to fight in life. Not everyone sees your scars  and the things that you had to go through. What they see is a smile on your face  and assumes all’s well  but only you know how much you are hurting still.

It’s  partly true. One has to be strong to face all those early trials in one’s life. One has to have faith in what comes next. One has to believe.  Standing strong. Standing still.  These are words that  always stand out when I think of the past. These are words that make me hope  to be better, to dream more and just feel glad I am  alive.

The smile would always be there. I believe in greeting each morning with a big smile on my face. I believe  that everything would be okay the moment I wake up. I just believe. One could be sensitive and sentimental enough to reminisce a little of what has been, the good times would always be memories to cherish,   but sometimes one should be  bold enough to accept the truth that things happen (maybe for a reason), that they  are not  a part of one’s dream.  We should not be afraid to  see what is at the bend in  the road,  there is probably something more to discover  that  makes life more meaningful. When you have faced challenging circumstances in your life and you’re still standing, I call that courage. When you believe that eventually things fall into place, I call that faith.

I love this quote from Helen Keller: “Faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into light.”  

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I have a little good news. I went back to SSS yesterday and what do you know, my  pension is ready for credit.  Alleluia!  But two months of processing is quite long enough.

Got to trim our carabao grass again, replant some flowering plants and uproot some dead ones.   I planted  two more pineapple crowns  behind the house. Those I planted earlier are growing nicely, let me see, I have seven in all now. I hope the first one would produce a  flower soon.

The life of a gardener – plenty of time to enjoy the morning sun and the afternoon breeze. Sometimes  it is quite a bonus to listen to the visiting sparrows. A hot cup of coffee is always welcome at the break of dawn, when the world is still asleep  and the quiet could be felt.

I stay here in this corner most mornings drinking a hot cup of coffee  and listening to the sparrows sing.

I stay here in this corner most mornings drinking a hot cup of coffee and listening to the sparrows sing.

Despite the busy days  at the garden, I was able to finish four books at the start of the challenge. I am in the middle of reading my 5th book now. Peter  Mayle’s two books, A Year In Provence and Tojours  in Provence (the  sequel)  were such a joy to read. I learned so much about what life was like in Provence.  Now I am beginning to enjoy Italy, it is such a lovely place too.

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Greetings of peace.

Finally completed the 9 novena masses for Simbang Gabi. What a joy! What a blessing!

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I would like to wish you all a blessed, happy and merry Christmas. It’s that time of year again when we share the joys that the season brings – time to be merry, time to make friends with those you have hurt and who have hurt you before, time to feel the joy of His coming.  He is the reason why we celebrate Christmas.

Here’s hoping for a bountiful 2017 to all of you. I am grateful for your presence and I am glad to meet those new followers to my blog. Let us make this community a truly happy one.

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Whatever else be lost among the years, let us keep Christmas still a shining thing; Whatever doubts assail us, or what fears, let us hold close one day, remembering It’s poignant meaning for the hearts of men. Let us get back our childlike faith again.-grace noll crowell

Remembering this lovely message about Christmas. It’s that time of year again when we get so busy with preparations. There is a much-awaited guest, a little child born in Bethlehem.

The celebration of  Christmas may not be that always  happy for everyone. There are people who spend their  Christmas on the street on a cold winter night. There are people who make use of  cardboard boxes  in some corner for their beds. There are people who never know the twinkle of the tinsel on the  Christmas tree or the bright lights that adorn it. Christmas is just another day  or night of begging on the streets. Not all of us are lucky to  open gifts, prepare a lot of food on the table, exchange warm hugs  or listen to Christmas carols.  The joy that Christmas brings is non-existent in their lives.

What is happiness? People say happiness depends on our outlook in life, the way we experience things and the way we react to them. It is not so much  of the material things in our life but more on peace of mind, contentment, purity of heart, a positive attitude towards life,  a sense of well-being,  or a roof over one’s head and food on the table.

Happiness could be found in the simplest of things in our lives. A smile makes us happy,  more so when it comes from  strangers we meet on the streets. A  simple hello would put a smile on one’s face and is usually answered with another hello.

No matter what the circumstances, remember always to be happy. Celebrating Christmas is one reason to put a smile on your face.

 

 

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