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Archive for the ‘life’ Category


Year 2017 is about to end. It’s barely two weeks to go before we’ll see  year 2018.

Some of us keep New Year resolutions religiously every year. I used to, maybe about three decades ago  but not anymore. I seldom follow it anyway. It’s just one of those things you think of when another year is over and a new year is about to start.

Things  change and priorities  change too. what we used to think as  something important is set aside for another one. What we used to  think we need to do is replaced  by something  more precious in our eyes.  Priorities are set but  plans sometimes go awry  in the process.   We like to think we are in control of our lives but we never know what  comes, those unexpected moments  (good or bad)  that change our direction.  You reach a point in life when you won’t need to  worry that much. You reach a point when you just watch what happens day  by day and  you try  to grasp what it means. Is it beneficial to you? Will it make you happy? Will it let you be at peace with yourself?

I hope and pray 2018 will be a good year for all of us, if not for the world, at least in our personal lives.  I hope 2018 would see us fulfilling life-long dreams and desires.  I hope  that in 2018, we’ll be more understanding and compassionate to our neighbors, friends and family members.  May love be there always.

Do you keep a New Year’s resolution?

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The sky is dotted with grey clouds. I can’t understand this kind of weather. It’s been raining on and off since the start of December. There are times when one o’clock  in the afternoon looks like six in the  evening. That’s how dark it goes sometimes.

It’s been raining since noon today, that kind that stays for a few hours and you won’t want to get out of the house. Nursing your coffee mug, trying to start another  suspense thriller on your tab.  One feels a little lazy  and lethargic.

Three days ago, I found a copy of Paula Hawkins’s second book called Into The Water.  Goodreads  Choice Award 2017 winner under the mystery and thriller category. Back in 2015, her first book The Girl On the Train also won in the same group. I can’t help but compare  her second book to the first one. I actually gave them both three-stars but I like the first one better.  I got confused at first while reading the first few chapters of Into The Water. So many characters,   it’s a compelling read though – mysterious, eerie and full of suspense. I didn’t expect the ending.  I just started on the  Missing Child by Patricia  MacDonald. It’s my first book of this particular author, another suspense and  mystery thriller. The first few chapters are fast-paced, that kind that you would want to pick up again after setting it aside for an hour or two.  It is my 199th read on Goodreads this year. I finished my 150-book challenge  2017 the last week of October and continued on. So many books, so many stories to read, so many talented authors to discover. I guess this is the year that I  found so many authors but they were  not in my bucket list.  Mary Oliver’s poems come in handy when I am feeling low. I always find her works so uplifting.  I wish I could find some of her books here. I think National Book Store does not carry this author. I do read some of her works online though.

Books are the easiest companions you can ever have, they don’t complain, they don’t get mad, they just wait in a corner until you  have the time to hold them again.

What have you been reading lately?

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Maybe


I have always dreamed

someday we’ll meet again.

Sometimes the silence is deafening

but I could hear your voice in the distance.

I have always thought love could withstand it all

I was wrong to think there is forever.

Maybe,

when I am old and grey

we’ll meet again.

Until then.

 

 

 

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I think it was a few months ago when I reviewed a book and recommended it to book lovers like me. Like I’ve always said before, I don’t make a review by parroting a synopsis or summary of a book like other people do. You can find those lovely summaries online.  I’d rather think of how I enjoyed reading it or how it affected me. Believe me, reading one always affects me, be it a good story or not.

I’ve set aside one or two books that I have recently started when I found this lovely book by Helen J. Rolfe.  It is my first time to encounter a book by this author and I just love it.  The title made me smile and it was not just because the story obviously was about Christmas which is my favorite season of the year. Christmas At The Little Knitting Box – this reminds me of those long ago days when doing crafts were in vogue.

My mum has this sturdy Singer sewing machine which has been  with her since I was in grade school. At her age now (she’s 88) she still can sew and  repair her dresses with it.  You won’t believe this but she still has those pillow cases  which she sewed and embroidered  a long, long time ago.  There was  even this center table runner with my name embroidered on it.  I learned embroidery  and crochet  when I was in grade school in our Home Economics class. That was followed by simple projects that I learned during high school. Back in the nineties, my former boss at Bank of the Philippine Islands had set up a craft store  in one of the malls here in Metro Manila.  She taught us crafts like  paper quilling, candle making and cross-stitching.  There was a time I got so engrossed in cross-stitching  that I even brought my projects to the office and did them  during lunch breaks. Some of my office mates were in it too and we exchanged designs, sourced materials. Until now I still have those  skein threads in almost all shades and colors.

The book I have just read  reminds me of those days. I’ve never done knitting though. Those colorful yarns featured in the book made me remember those nights my  eyes would grow heavy with fatigue to finish a corner of a particular cross-stitch design.  It’s a beautifully written book that was a joy to read, an uplifting saga about families and beating the odds. It is a story about celebrating Christmas – the snow on the front porch, the Christmas lights and parols, the beautifully decorated Christmas tree, the food, gifts and everything that spells Christmas. It is a feel-good book that I would recommend to everyone to read during the season. I am giving it five stars.

 

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“Your idea of me is fabricated with materials  you have borrowed from other people and from yourself.  What you think of me depends on what you think of yourself.  Perhaps you create your idea of me out of material that you would like to eliminate from your own idea of yourself.  Perhaps your idea of me is a reflection of what other people think of you.  Or perhaps what you think of me is simply what you think I think of you”.   Thomas Merton

It was written on the first page of my tattered journal (tattered now anyway since I had it like  more than forty years ago).  I love quoting Thomas Merton. I used to devour his writings when I was still a student librarian at the University of Santo Tomas Main Library.   I wonder where I could buy copies of some of his books.  Two of his books are still on my wish list until now.

In the Dark Before Dawn

The Seven Storey Mountain

Some years ago, a friend gave me a copy of Merton’s Thoughts in  Solitude along with the pretty volume of Breakfast at Tiffany’s  by Truman Capote. They are two of the books I treasure.

 

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I find this poem so very inspiring.  sometimes we move so fast,  always  in a hurry   and we forget to appreciate what life is all about.  Great blessings to all.

Slow Me Down, Lord

Slow me down, Lord.

Ease the pounding of my heart by the quieting of my mind.

Steady my hurried pace.

Give me, amidst the day’s confusion

the calmness of the everlasting hills.

Break the tension of my nerves and muscles

with the soothing music of singing streams

that live in my memory.

Help me to know the magical, restoring power of sleep.

Teach me the art

of taking minute vacations….

slowing down to look at a flower,

to chat with a friend,

to read a few lines from a good book.

Remind me

of the fable of the hare and the tortoise;

that the race is not always to the swift;

that there is more to life than measuring its speed.

Let me look up at the branches of the towering oak

and know that … it grew slowly … and well.

Inspire me

to send my own roots down deep…

into the soil of life’s endearing values…

That I may grow toward the stars of my greater destiny.

Slow me down, Lord.

by Wilfred Arlan Peterson

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The rain has stopped…finally. Brrr, it’s cold. We’re  still under a typhoon signal but the weather is improving.  Hope to see the sun again. I miss its warmth.

I’ve been reading a post by a friend on Facebook about her encounter with a doctor at a local hospital in  Baguio.  She used to blog here at WordPress but now prefers to write about her lovely and inspiring adventures  on her wall on Facebook.  She didn’t feel well the night before coming home so she ended  up  checking in at the emergency ward of the hospital by herself.  She met this cute (her words)  doctor at  the hospital. She said it is not a tale of   ” swept-off-my-feet romance. This is, rather, a story of how every now and then, I have to treat myself like my own leading lady. This is the love story we must all have with ourselves, primarily.”   Haha, I laughed and smiled and several of her friends are still posting their comments until now.

Sometimes, we need those “feel good” encounters with fellow human beings, not necessarily a romantic one mind you but something you’ll think about long after  it happened.  I had a similar experience years and years ago when I was having treatment for my recurring UTI.  This doctor  was  a substitute for my  nephrologist who was in another hospital at that time.   The kind words, the caring ways made a difference.  He said that his brother also worked  at the same bank where I used to work. That was the first and only time I met him at the doctor’s office. When you are not feeling well, everything comes into focus and  you appreciate  meeting people  who are concerned about your well-being.  You welcome them in your orbit just like welcoming a new member of the family or newly met friends.

And speaking of FB, I’ve been noticing those ugly grammar errors that people post on their comments. Gosh, I cringe when I read shout outs/comments on FB shortened like they are text messages. I am beginning to think, either one is too lazy to type properly or just feeling “pa-cute”.    I am not pretending to be perfect but there are those red lines you’ll encounter when you are typing in another language or using misspelled words.  One should proofread one’s post time and again.  We don’t need more time than the others to write legibly, right? Do you agree?

 

 

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