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Archive for the ‘guilty pleasures’ Category


It’s like some other Sundays, a bit uneventful.  We  attended mass early,  spent sometime at the grocery store before going home for breakfast.

Oh, this is Santa’s official countdown. Right now, there are 42 days  until Christmas.   This morning we have finally put up some Christmas decorations.  I am having second thoughts on putting up a tree because it takes too long to decorate and we need to buy new Christmas lights for it. Unlike in areas where most of you live, we only have the artificial trees here in our country. Every year there are changes in the shape of trees that you can buy in department stores, even the color is not solely green now.  Our tree is seven feet tall so it’s quite big for us to decorate. I am thinking of buying a smaller one where Nate could place his gifts come Christmas Eve.

I am just waiting for the opening of the SM City East Ortigas on  December 2. It  is very near our place, a ten-minute tricycle ride. It is SM Supermalls’ 60th mall in the country.  Count on the traffic in the area when it opens.  It would be an advantage though for us since we won’t have to go to other SM malls to shop, to dine  or to watch movies. So glad to know they’ll have a branch of J.CO donuts there. J.CO Donuts & Coffee is a cafe restaurant chain in Indonesia specializing in donuts, coffee and frozen yogurt. I swear, their donuts are even better than Krispy Kreme. I do hope there would also be a National Book Store there or a Booksale. I am looking forward to it.

Been reading a lot lately. I am on my 110th book this year. Found some nice volumes that would tide me over probably until next year that is, if I won’t join the Goodreads challenge.  How about you, what are you reading at the moment?

Have a blessed week ahead everyone!

 

 

 

 

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There have been so many excellent books written about the Holocaust both true accounts and fiction. There is Man’s Search For Meaning by Victor Frankl which I’ve read three decades ago, Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally which was adapted into a movie and  Mila 18 by Leon Uris.

Irena’s Children is one of them, a newly published book about the life of Irena Sendler and how she helped save thousands of children affected by the war (when Germany invaded Poland).

Such a riveting story of loss of millions of lives because of war, selflessness, love of family, love of country, courage, life and death.

Gosh, I can’t believe it. this is my 99th read and I am almost, almost done. One more book to go. I am in a quandary which to read first, Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak which I’ve been eyeing to read since my college years or The Kitchen House which is another historical novel. Or maybe, toss coin na lang, which is which..haha 🙂

Sometimes,Iwonder why I am always drawn to history, fiction or not. Maybe I am an old soul.

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One thing I like about Facebook is their daily app called On This Day where you can go back and see what you wrote a few years back, a summary of shoutout you did through the years.  I wrote the  following paragraphs exactly four years ago on my wall. I wonder if I lifted them  from  some earlier posts I did here. I know it is easier if there is a previous review of the book you want to read or it was given a rating of five stars like they do on Goodreads but I guess you can always explore a book and sometimes you certainly find nice surprises.

Sometimes I wonder if people read a particular book because they love and like the author or they find positive reviews about it or simply because the book is just there, handy for one to enjoy.

I am not deterred by negative reviews they give to a particular book or been influenced by the five-star rating on the side, I’d rather want to discover it on my own. Sometimes, you’ll be surprised, you actually love the story of one which others say is not worth that much.

And I love this quote from Roald Dahl: “So please, oh PLEASE, we beg, we pray, Go throw your TV set away, And in its place you can install, A lovely bookshelf on the wall.”

It’s funny, I even capitalized that word  “please”.  I am on the last leg of my reading challenge of 100 books this year (88% done) and I realized that one should not be afraid to try reading new authors, not just those you’re familiar with or are well-known.  Sometimes, the very first books they publish are the best ones. And yes, I have to be honest here, sometimes the book cover does it 🙂

What are you reading now? I am done with some books on baking and those fiction books that have baking recipes in between the pages.

 

 

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I am excited. Truly.

A few days ago, I saw this on Mary Oliver’s timeline. Her new book Upstream will be released in a month and I just hope this time I would be able to find a copy.

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It’s the newest collection of Mary Oliver’s essays.  I’m always on the lookout for Mary Oliver’s quotes online  and luckily I found one on Blogger. Would you believe, the author quoted  a poem of Mary  every day for a year and did a short write-up of what those words meant  in  her life?  I am still on the first few entries but I was able to find some poems which are not included in the only two books I have of Mary Oliver, New And Selected Poems, Vol. 1 and the lovely edition of A Thousand Mornings.

Then I found these on her wall too and I was l smiling like crazy. Her words inspire me, lift me up and give me that boost I sorely need when I feel down. To appreciate  the beauty of the  natural world around us, what bliss!

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One of my favorite poems is this, The Wild Geese.

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

 

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Oh please, don’t laugh.

Yes, I know some of you are pretty smiling right now.

I am having a LSS. You know, that moment when you wake up from a short afternoon nap and your head is full of a lovely melody and you begin to sing along. I have no option  but to open my PC and search  for this song.  YouTube is a little helpful when you feel nostalgic with the old days.  Those dreams you had three decades ago,  when you were just learning that falling in love was a wonderful feeling but it was  full of pain.  I was seventeen.

Now I know you’re laughing.

I borrowed Josef’s headset  and searched for the song Only Friends. Why can’t I remember who sang it? Back when I was still new to blogging, I made a blog post about last song syndrome.

I found this site with plenty of uploaded Lettermen songs, old favorites like Traces, Morning Girl, Dedicated To The One I Love, This Guy’s In Love With You ( I love the version of Burt Bacharach though)  and of course Only Friends. I know listening to them now seems a bit silly but the music is more soothing compared to the noise I hear nowadays.  And do you know, here in my corner of the world, Sundays are dedicated to the oldies and the senior citizens or what you call in their heyday, the baby boomers.  You will always find  FM and AM  bands playing the songs of the 60’s and the 70’s all day long.  You wonder, those were the days, those days you were growing up and all you had was a single turntable and your 45.  Those were the days too when you used to write on small  Hello Kitty notebooks with a  Hello Kitty pen.

Sometimes I let my mind
Drift endlessly and in the wind
your face I see
smile gently as you turn to pass

But the love that I once had for you
Is gone so is the meaning too
I guess it never really had a chance
to last………

The love is gone but the memory made you smile 🙂

 

 

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I seldom post family pictures here but I can’t pass this up. Today is a lovely family day. We played blocks, I just wonder if the adults enjoyed it more than Nate. Mom was so amazed that Nate talks non-stop but when he is doing something like building blocks, he is so serious. There are shouts of laughter in between of course.

When you are blessed and lucky enough to have a loving and thoughtful daughter….your heart shouts with joy.

No special occasion but what a lovely surprise, a personalized journal with our photos on the cover. I love collecting journals and this one is so beautiful.Thank you so much Nissa. I love, love it.

 

Nonna and Nate at the garden. An afternoon of fun and laughter.

Nonna and Nate at the garden. An afternoon of fun and laughter.

 

I remember this. Nate was thrilled blowing a spare candle on his birthday cake. I love the message too: " Write until it becomes as natural as breathing".

I remember this. Nate was thrilled blowing a spare candle on his birthday cake. I love the message too: ” Write until it becomes as natural as breathing”.

 

Haha :) Nate's favorite during birthdays...making a wish The two of us.

Haha  :)  Nate’s favorite during birthdays…making a wish The two of us.

 

Ano daw, wacky shots? I don't know how. Family is forever.

Come again, wacky shots? I don’t know how. Family is forever.

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It’s been a while.

It’s been raining cats and dogs here for the past days and I only saw the sun showed its face briefly early this morning (for a few minutes actually)  then she played hide and seek  with the thick clouds  never to show up again the whole day.  We were alarmed when Marikina River reached almost critical level because the rain dumped so much in thirty minutes causing the river to swell. Marikina is adjacent to our town so they have to open the eight gates of Manggahan floodway which is so near to us.  There are pockets of water in some areas until now. Old folks call this “siyam-siyam”,  nine days of prolonged rained brought about by the southwest monsoon.  Well, it is the rainy season so what can we expect but I am praying hard that flash floods won’t be a problem for us  during this wet season.

You wonder what the smell of rain is. It threatens but at the same time the sound of raindrops gently falling on the roof is quite soothing. The drizzle is quite nice for the plants but the downpour makes them swim too much in water. And when it rains, you have so much time in your hands to read. I have just finished my 79th book on Goodreads’ 2016 reading challenge, 18 books in advance.  When you are lucky to find a subject quite different from your usual reading genre, you devour it with gusto. I found a treasure in reading The Secret Ways of Perfume. You would think that a scent of a perfume is just that, something you like but we don’t know the complexities of how it is made, you need a detailed study on the combination of scents (the essences of flowers, herbs and spices). There is something that soothes, energizes, inspires. lavender, bergamot, roses…learning the world of perfume creation. How nice!

How was your Sunday?

 

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