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Posts Tagged ‘family life’


Maybe those old songs that I played on YouTube triggered it. I don’t know but those times when we were kids seemed so vivid in my memory.

My two brothers and I lived in the province when we were growing up until we graduated in grade school when Dad decided to transfer us to the University of Sto. Tomas where we finished high school and  college.   During our younger  days, Mom used to go to Metro Manila to be with Dad and we were left in the care of my maternal grandmother and my unmarried aunt.  We lived in their old ancestral house with two older cousins.   My aunt just visited our house every day to water the plants and to feed  the chickens in our yard. Those were the days, I could recall them now.

I wonder what’s with Royal True Orange and crackers. I remember that when we get sick, we would have a bottle of Royal True Orange and  crackers by our bedside.  Back then,  the doctor in our town makes home visits.   I wonder how he managed to divide his time between those home visits and caring for other sick people who visits the Municipal Health Center.  There is always a ready tube of Liberol Ointment when we get colds. I wonder if it is still in the market until now but it was very effective for chest and back rub for us.  It’s been decades since I saw a tube of that liniment.

My oldest aunt (Mom’s side) had a sari-sari store in the barrio where we lived before.  Fancy having those Vicks candies with free plastic rings inside. My girl cousin and I would collect different colors and put them on our fingers. The world of kids. I also remember those crunchy but hard biscuits  my aunt used to sell per piece. They were shaped like bracelets.

I also remember this – madre  cacao. My dad used them as perimeter fence in our property there in the province. They produce lovely flowers  during  the summer months and we would use the young stems to curl our hair and make them wavy.   We had annatto seeds  to color our lips even if the fresh seeds are pungent.  Back then I didn’t even know that the dried seeds and extracted annatto oil  were used as food color.  I only knew of their use when Dad introduced me in the kitchen.

When we were kids, my oldest brother and I were fond of climbing trees in our backyard. We had guava trees, star apples and tamarind trees.  We would gather  ripe cashews and  save the seeds which contain the nuts inside.   We would roast them and eat the hot nuts.  We sometimes eat the ripe yellow fruit, slice it thinly and put a little salt on top.   Duhat fruits or Java plums are plenty during the summer months.  There will always be a duhat tree in the backyard or at our neighbor’s which we used to climb back then. Locally, the fruits  are called lomboy.

Ah, the times we enjoyed those early years and I am right here reminiscing.

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A friend once said, “time does not walk, it runs”.

Yes, time flies! And before we know it, the month of May will be gone.  Time does not tarry, it just goes on. Yesterday was another lovely day of celebrating. We opted to eat out for lunch to celebrate Mother’s Day a week after. It was the only time Nissa’s family was available.  How nice to dine at Savory Restaurant after almost three decades of  going in one of their branches.  They have a new branch at SM East Ortigas Mall so we tried it. The price of  the food is still reasonable after all these years.

I discovered this lovely quaint shop called Miniso, a Japanese store. It’s one of Nissa’s favorite stores.  It has been there since SM Ortigas opened last December but I didn’t notice or maybe it’s because I  seldom go window shopping. They have skin care and beauty products, food and drinks, kikay kits, hair accessories, jewelries, head phones, phone holders, keyboards, clothing etc. You name those small things dear to a woman’s heart and they are all displayed there. They have more than a thousand branches worldwide since they opened back in 2013. I told Nissa that one of these days, I would go back. I bought a face mask, so different from the ones I usually buy at Mercury drug stores. You can even choose a design to your  liking.  I don’t go out without face mask on. The air in Metro Manila is not safe and healthy. Pollution from cars, buses, jeepneys and what have you are things you encounter if you are a daily commuter.

It was also one of those weekends that I was inspired again to bake cookies. I made a whole lot of chocolate raisin cookies. Nate said it was yummy. I reduced the sugar by half since the raisins and chocolate baking bits are  already sweet.  We still have some left, just perfect for those cups of tea or coffee.

The joy of discovery, the joy of baking, the joy of bonding with family….another priceless weekend.

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Last Saturday, Josef and I chanced upon fresh guavas in the market.  They were a bit costly though because I think guavas are not really in season now. But I was longing for sometime, Sinigang na Bangus sa Bayabas.  You may call sinigang fish stew or soup which may be flavored with sour ingredients like tomatoes, tamarind, vinegar or what have you.  You add green pepper for the taste. Bayabas is guava in Tagalog. Wow, it tasted simply wonderful.

I paired it with  crunchy fried zucchini as appetizer. What a lovely Saturday lunch we had.

I heard  Nate  shout over the phone “Happy Mother’s Day Nonna, Happy Birthday” early morning yesterday I laughed.  Maybe he equates mother’s day with celebrating birthdays too. We were not able to see  each other yesterday because Nissa’s family had lunch with her in-laws. That’s okay though because we will have a late family  celebration  Saturday next. Nate just finished his one-week kiddy training workshop at McDo last Friday and he was awarded a certificate being The Best of the Best. I had it on a separate blog post here. So proud o him. He did it on his own.

I so love weekends.  Family bonding is still the best.

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He repeatedly said during his homily, “for every success of a man, there is a mother behind”.  It was the essence of Fr. JP’s homily early this morning.  He gave  special blessings to all mothers who attended the mass today.

There was this boy who came home crying. At the gate, his mother asked what happened.  He said that he didn’t want to go to school anymore. His mother assured him that she’ll teach him at home. He was principally educated at home by his mom who was a teacher.  He became a world-famous figure. He was the most prolific inventor in American  history and amassed a record of more than 1,000 patents  in different fields. He is Thomas  Alba Edison.

For every success of a man, there is a mother behind. May I repeat that? For every success of a man, there is a loving mother behind.  She is the one who motivates a child to become someone, she patiently teaches values  and instill those good manners to her children. We seldom see a mom who is not that concerned with her growing up kids. Once you embrace motherhood, I think that’s a given.

Over the years, the celebration of Mother’s Day, just like Christmas has been commercialized. Fancy those department stores brandishing their wares to vulnerable shoppers  during Mother’s Day. Gifts are lovely but of course but it is not only during Mother’s Day that we should show our love for our mothers.  Every day, we have the opportunity to love them and think of them always. We are lucky if we still have our moms around. We are blessed if we could still talk to each other and share important events in our lives. No matter how commercialized the occasion has become, I think most mothers would still want to celebrate it and be recognized in their efforts to care, teach and love their children well.

Greet your moms, it’s their special day today.

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I can’t believe this….haha 🙂

It’s McDonald’s  summer  workshop promo. One of the kiddie crew for five days starting today, two hours each day. They get to experience on-floor  restaurant training. They will be taught burger-making and sundae-making too, but for all we know, it would be more on playing than actually serving meals.

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He is growing up fast and learning responsibility in the process.

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♪♪♫Now we are tall, and Christmas trees are small,
and you don’t ask the time of day.
But you and I, our love will never die,
but guess we’ll cry come first of May.♫♪♫

Aren’t you reminded of these song lyrics every time May comes? I am. Today is our village fiesta. There was a 7am mass in honor of St. Joseph the Worker, the patron saint of the village. A band played in some streets right after the mass.

My brother and his family fetched Mom today.  She stayed here with us for almost ten months and she was really excited to go home. Back in the province she could attend to her vegetable garden and do general cleaning in her room which was left vacant  for so long. They brought with them six dozens of Alaminos longganisa  ( our local sausage) , three big bags of  Santol  and a bag of Indian mango. Santol is  also called wild mangosteen. I already gave one bag to my other brother here, gave some to our neighbor and there are plenty yet. Our neighbor suggested that I make Santol jam  or maybe candied Santol. I am thinking about it since I haven’t  yet tried making a Santol jam or candy before.  I have a recipe though for it being made into a tasty dish. I’ll probably try the Santol candy. Would research on how to make it.

Started on the carabao grass late this afternoon. Surprisingly there was no wind so it was still hot at around 4pm. It would probably take me more days to finish the whole thing  😦

By the way, speaking of posts, this is my 1,981st for this blog. Nineteen more to go before reaching another milestone.  Did I say I am looking forward to the month of May? It’s Mama Mary’s month.  Have a fruitful and happy month of May.

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It seems like it was only yesterday  and yet it is Sunday again. Time travels so fast.

I miss reading  the Sunday papers,  I used to subscribe when dad was alive. Early Sunday mornings would always be a cup of instant coffee and Philippine Star. I don’t subscribe anymore since I always don’t get to read it anyway. Besides, when you eat an early breakfast at Jollibee, the morning paper comes free.  For so many Sundays now, we always attend the 6:30 am masses in town.  There are always online sites for national dailies if one wants to be updated with the headlines which almost always deals with extra-judicial killings. It’s not really good to be reading those news reports that only make you feel that the present government is doing nothing.  I pity my country, in nine months since their president occupied Malacanang, it’s one big ride downwards.

Today we celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday, a feast day in the Catholic Church.  It is celebrated on the Sunday after Easter, the Octave of Easter. I will always remember my former boss at the bank, she was the one who initiated that we pray the 3 O’clock Prayer to the  Divine Mercy every day. I’ve come to memorize the prayer. This hour of Great Mercy  promises tremendous grace in our lives.

So yesterday was a  family celebration  of Mom’s birthday.  It’s one of those day worth-remembering again not so much of the food (though we have plenty of it) but more of the camaraderie and the laughter when our baby Nate is around. I think he will always be the life of a party.  I have some food magazines here and Nate pointed at one of the covers and told his dad that he wanted something similar to eat soon. It’s a colorful array of veggies and meat on the side. We laughed while he pointed at the photo.  Sometimes kids are taken by colors  although they are the first to figure out that a certain taste is not to their liking.  I am glad that Nate eat his vegetables more than her daddy does 🙂

Have I told you that I finally changed my Aldiko e-reader to Moonreader?  Moonreader seems the better option for my e-books, it is easier to navigate  and to follow.  Since I started reading e-books a few years ago, it has always been Aldiko but I guess it is no longer that user-friendly on my tab. I wonder sometimes that despite an outer device with a 10 gb to boot, I still get the message, the space it not enough to upgrade apps. The only apps I installed earlier when I didn’t have  my computer before was the BPI and WordPress. The tab comes with all those pre-installed apps that you cannot delete but are upgraded from time to time Facebook included.  never mind, I only ever use it for reading and for paying household bills online. I want to buy a camera first before changing my tab.  One of these days, maybe.

 

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