Posted in family, family life, journeys, Nate, tagged family, family life, journeys, life, Nate, our little bundle of joy on April 10, 2015 |
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Our big boy Nate….
Nissa calls this role reversal. I laughed out loud imagining a smiling Nate having this conversation with his dad.
Nate: “Daddy, what color is this?”
Nate: “Very good!”
Hahaha. Smart boy.
Sometimes, I am amazed at the quick way kids learn things. He is two and a half-year old going on twenty.
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Posted in family, family life, guilty pleasures, nursery rhymes, tagged book quote, books, family bonding, family life, life, Nate, our little bundle of joy, reading on March 30, 2015 |
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It was another lovely day spent with my daughter’s family. They came over to visit us after almost a month of not seeing each other. We survived on Viber calls and Skype messages. Nate has grown. He has grown taller and his words now are in a complete sentence. I haven’t taken any picture the last few months because my camera broke and always when they come over, we tend to be busy catching up on news, playing with Nate and just happy being together.
Last Saturday, I had a chance to take a few shots, pics of Nate and Mom, Mom and Nissa, the three of them, Josef and Nate. As always , I was behind the camera. He was thrilled to see his new book which a friend gave two weeks ago for his birthday. I call him our little bookworm. He easily identified all the animals included in the nursery rhymes. I was amazed. Maybe their various trips to the zoo helped a lot. We learn from a child right? Unafraid, ready to explore and always curious about things. So trusting, so confident, secured that he is loved.
Yesterday, I received a message from WordPress saying that I have made one hundred posts on Our Little Bundle Of Joy. I started it a few days before he was born last November 2012 with the thought of documenting every precious moment with him. I showed his pictures once and he said “Nathan, Nathan”. Nissa is making an album of their trip last year to Dumaguete City and Siquijor. I love those pics showing Nate enjoying the beach and the kiddie pool. Nissa has a way with words, the photo descriptions are just lovely. She’ll have it printed later. I wish I could make a similar one but I am not familiar with the program she is using.
Here’s a lovely book quote for kids (using Nate and Josef’s pic which is included in my latest blog post). The happiness of teaching a child to love books and reading. Someday, we would explore bookstores together.
Do you remember your favorite books when you were kids?
And did I tell you that Nate wants to be an astronaut? I asked Nissa how that came about. she said that he remembers the movie/pictures he saw of astronauts. Such a big dreamer for one so young, he is only 2 years and 4 months old.
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Posted in blogging, family, family life, journeys, life, silence speaks, tagged Bank of the Philippine Islands, BPI Art Collection, Close to Nature, Contemporary Realism, family life, journeys, life, Manuel Baldemor, precious moments, silence speaks on February 1, 2015 |
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I haven’t blogged for…let me see….almost a week. And sometimes when you haven’t expressed your thoughts in words for quite a while, it is quite hard to write again. I am trying to catch up on reading while having coughing fits late at night. The nights are long and cold while the days are sunny and bright, perfect chances of having runny nose and headache. I am feeling okay now but I have gone lazy blogging. I am grateful though that readers continue to visit my blog even without a new post.
I miss the shouts and laughter of my grandson who spent a long weekend with us. Hearing his voice asking about this and that, being so curious about everything he see are quite welcome changes to an otherwise silent and quiet household. I am just amazed of the things Nate learned for a month that we haven’t seen him. He has a favorite word now. He would say “later” when he is not inclined to take his milk, when he is not yet sleepy and when you ask a question that he thinks would be okay for later. Hahaha, funny how you can learn something from a two-year old child. Time is of the essence of course and sometimes you think time is running out and you do your bit of everything in a hurry. That word later made me realize that I might have done it wrong,trying to do everything in one go but you can enjoy the moment and do things later. He would just say I want milk when he is hungry and water please when he wants a drink. Learning to relax I think is one luxury that we have somehow forgotten and the smile, warm hugs and embraces of a child reminds you to take time out from this so-called busy life and just enjoy the moment.
I told my kids that the feeling was like celebrating Christmas Eve and looking forward to Christmas day. Imagine having midnight snack of a crispy bagnet (pork belly which is the Ilocano version of lechon kawali) with steamed rice at 1am, precious moments sharing a meal at an ungodly hour and having the time of your life listening to their stories. Waking up late and enjoying a sumptuous breakfast accompanied by Nate’s shouts of “yummy, yummy”, what more could you ask for?
Every year, Nissa gives me a copy of Bank of PI’s planner/journal featuring selected artworks from the BPI Art Collection. This year, they have Contemporary Realism. There is a featured contemporary artist for every month along with the original picture of the paintings and enlarged copies in another page. It’s almost too good to use as a planner. The cover is a painting from my favorite artist, Manuel Baldemor.
Precious moments, unhurried time enjoying the beauty of the now, making memories, finding treasures in simple things, I guess these more than make up for the days we haven’t seen each other, just hearing each other’s voices on the line.
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Posted in family, family life, I love Sundays, journeys, tagged a bit of myself, family, family life, journeys, life, parenting on January 11, 2015 |
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I miss my darling Nate. A few minutes ago, he shouted, “I love you Nonna, bye” in such a clear voice that all I was able to say was, “I love you too baby, take care”. Such is our exchange over the phone that I wanted to call him back to hear his voice again.
While we were at church today, there were lots of kids around Nate’s age and I was so surprised how behaved they were when the mass started. There was this mother and a new-born daughter right in front of us (a family of one of the lectors/commentators) and I can’t help but remember those days when Nate was just a baby and I wrote about every development in his young life accompanied by lots of pictures on my phone and on my camera. Josef even bought a video cam when Nate was born. This tiny tot will hold our hearts forever.
Moments like this always makes me nostalgic, remembering those times when the kids were growing up. I still keep their notes, letters and drawings in a shoe box that I lined with recycled Christmas wrappers and lovingly arranged together with their school recognition awards /certificates and medals. They were both achievers and they made me proud. Josef was an honors student until high school while Nissa maintained it until she graduated from college. I remember that time one of her professors called me up at home (I was retired by then) and excitedly shared the news that the deliberation for graduating honors students was over and Nissa garnered the highest Latin honors in her batch and graduated Magna Cum Laude. For a parent, it was a dream come true, an ultimate reward for all the sacrifices and the sleepless nights worrying about the days they came home late from school. The three of us all graduated from UST, three alumni who embraced a Catholic education. I couldn’t be prouder than most moms out there, I was the proudest mom when we came up the stage to award her with a silver medal embossed with the seal of the university and her name engraved at the back. Even her transcript of records were written, “Graduated Magna Cum Laude”. I remember Mom and Dad’s smiles when we came home and Nissa lovingly placed her medal on Dad’s neck and said to them both that it was for them too. Mom cried and dad was teary-eyed. When she graduated from her management training at the bank where I used to work, it was my turn to cry with such joy and happiness.
The joys of parenting. The pride you feel when your kids grow up as responsible adults. I am praying that someday, Nate would be as smart her mom.
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Posted in Christmas 2014, family, family life, guilty pleasures, Happy Birthday Jesus, photography, silence speaks, tagged Christmas 2014, Closer to God, family life, Mickey Mouse, Our precious bundle of joy, photography, silence speaks on December 25, 2014 |
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“You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
Please indulge me. I promise I won’t be talking about Christmas anymore until next year. Where was I? Ah, the beauty of seeing Christmas in the eyes of my two-year old grandson Nate. I think he is old enough now not just to make his eyes wonder at the tinsel hanging on a tree or and the nativity set he kept pointing at because we told him Baby Jesus was born today. In his excited voice, he greeted my brother and a close friend a Merry Christmas via Viber and they said that just hearing his voice was enough to make them smile and remember the significance of this happy season in our lives.
He was asleep when we came home from attending the Christmas Eve mass last night but when it was time for Noche Buena, he was wide awake. He kept saying, “dami, dami” while looking at the gifts in one corner with his name in lots of the pile. Nissa gifted him with a big Mickey Mouse stuffed toy, almost taller than he is and some battery-operated toys that he enjoyed playing with. At first he was reluctant to open the big package from Toys R Us. He only saw the back of Mickey and thought it was scary. We were laughing so hard when he finally glimpsed at his favorite Disney animal cartoon character and he embraced it while saying “Mickey, Mickey” in an excited voice.
Christmas 2014 with Nissa and Nate and Mickey of course…
I told Nissa she should have taken a video on Nate’s reaction while playing with his robots and shouting and dancing at the same time – a spontaneous display of joy. Such a simple thing to make a child laugh and smile and hug his mommy back. Every time I see a child’s appreciation for what you give him, it reminds me of how life should be lived – happiness is just within one’s reach if you’ll only learn to appreciate what is around you. We can surely learn from a child.
Thank you so much for all your Christmas wishes and greetings. I am truly blessed and lucky for having you all as blogging friends.
Do you keep a New year’s resolution? Have you made one?
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Posted in family, family life, journeys, life, Philippines, photography, rainy days, ramblings, tagged adventures, family life, journeys, life, Nate, photography, silence speaks on November 15, 2014 |
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I’ve been awake since 2:30am. Crazy, isn’t it? I had a shuteye though this afternoon. It rained early this morning but Josef and I did a quick trip to the wet market despite the rain. I was lucky to find a fresh bundle of young garlic. What a joy, just perfect for a rainy day. I’ve been on the lookout for this ever since I tasted it a few months ago at my son-in-law’s house. Although it is more expensive than the matured ones, it is best mixed with soup, a simple recipe of Chinese sotanghon and ground pork. The nutty flavor of the sliced young garlic is just so yummy I wish a bought a kilo instead of just a little bundle. You slice it thinly as you would an onion, sauté it with celery stalk and pork, adding a little salt and pepper then the sotanghon last. It’s best while it’s hot.
A productive day for arranging books , transferring some notes to my journal, blogging about Nate’s trip to Siquijor and Dumaguete, a little gardening this afternoon, what more could one ask, squeezing a little of everything in one day.
I was looking at the pictures that Nissa sent thru Viber earlier and I was thrilled to see our little Nate enjoying his four-day vacation with his mom and dad. He must be wondering where they were, different places, lovely scenery, lots of swimming to boot and a wide playground where he could roam around. This particular picture made me smile, I could imagine that hammock swaying gently through the breeze. What an adventure for a two-year old boy.
It must be fun to just be here, with nary a thought of anything but the joy of the moment, the touch of the sand on your toes and the sound of the ocean waves nearby.
Have you ever tried reacquainting yourself with children’s books? I did while I was covering Nate’s books this afternoon. Another weird thing to do but an enjoyable one. I am into e-books again. Let me correct that, I am alternating reading my loot last August and some short stories in between. I want to reread another favorite since I was in college. A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, published in 1943 and was written by Betty Smith. Have you read it?
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Posted in blessings, family, family life, guilty pleasures, Happiness, journeys, ramblings, silence speaks, tagged blogging, Closer to God, Faith, family life, guilty pleasures, journeys, silence speaks, thoughts and ramblings on November 9, 2014 |
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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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