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Posts Tagged ‘guilty pleasures’


Josef came home last night and gave me a small bag. Inside was a lovely wallet designed like a webbed mat.  He is really that thoughtful. I guess when there is no particular occasion and you receive a lovely gift, you’ll be surprised too. This is not the first time he did this. One time he bought me a thick book at National Book  Store on how to make candles.  He knows that I would appreciate it. Yes, I used to make candles but I gave them as gifts to friends. I haven’t sourced materials for a long time now.  We often eat out when he is around or when I am so lazy to prepare something in the kitchen, we would order a take-out.

Even Nissa always brings something every time they come to visit us. It’s mostly toiletries and body lotions or moisturizer or make-up.  Nate would ask his dad to open the trunk of the car when they get here and he would give me those gifts always with a smile and something like, “We have a gift for you Nonna.”   I am so blessed my kids grew up the way they are – loving, giving and thoughtful.

I found a copy of  The Godfather by Mario Puzo. The first time I read it was way back in college and  I already forgot the details of the story except the name Don Corleone and the Italian  mafia. Over the years, it turned into a classic with two more film sequels. I haven’t watched it though but I found a full movie on YouTube. Gonna watch it after I finish re-reading the book.  This is my 130th read on the 2017  reading challenge. Twenty more books to go until the end of the year.  Hooray! After this maybe I’ll go back to memoirs and contemporary books.

Have a lovely week ahead.

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Sometimes there is an advantage in attending anticipated mass. As Josef was free last Saturday night, we decided to go to mass at 6:30 pm.  It made my Sunday free.

For the past two mornings, I’ve been in the garden digging, replanting and weeding . Getting ready for the rainy days.  The satisfaction one gets from gardening….priceless. I know some won’t agree with me.   Sometimes I don’t wear gloves at all.  It’s nice to feel the rough and coarse earth in your hands once in a while. And it’s nice to see recently trimmed plants lining the garden wall.  One of my friends who visited me last Thursday brought  a pot of pink shrimp plant for my garden. I have the yellow variety so this pink one would add to the beauty of the yellow flowers. I hope I could propagate it later.

Pretty in pink. Can’t wait to see this in full bloom. My pink shrimp plant.

 

A Celosia bloom

I bought a seed packet of this Celosia and planted  it  a few months  back. I wonder if it would produce another color.

Gardening is one relaxing activity that I could not give up.  Yesterday, I transferred some Portulaca plants and they are now flowering nicely in different colors. They are so easy to propagate and very good ground covers. If it does not rain this afternoon, will be able to finish uprooting the weeds outside.  Gardening is hard but the happiness and satisfaction it gives are priceless.

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Nate was here yesterday and we had the whole day playing together and laughing out loud.  Being crazy with Nate was  a priceless bonding together.  Today is Father’s Day.  Greetings to all my thoughtful  and loving  daddy friends here on WordPress.

We’re back to making bead works and rosaries. Josef bought additional materials last week. There was a time when my days were consumed by rosary making. I give the rosaries to friends who come over for a visit.  I like working on Swarovski crystals, Hematite beads and fake pearls.  I’d like to try something using Tiger’s Eye. Love the shade of golden-yellow and deep red.  Tiger’s Eye is a very protective stone.

I  collect rosaries too, mostly gift from friends from abroad. I have Rose rosaries from Italy and Siena, rosaries from the Vatican and   one from Israel. Some are locally made.  I found a lovely bracelet which Nissa made when she was still with us a few years ago.  It would be nice to pair it with my rosary bracelet which comes with me everywhere I go. It is nice to be able to pray the rosary while waiting, in traffic and in a doctor’s office.

Do you like working on beads? Are you fond of it?

 

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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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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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♪♪♫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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I’ve been in this blog for almost eight years now. I have excluded the first year when I attempted to open an account at WordPress and really didn’t know how to navigate much less customize a site. What I posted was a single short poem I culled from my Multiply site back when Multiply was still alive. One learns as one goes along. You learn to interact with people you haven’t yet meet. You learn the rudiments of blogging. After all these years, I am glad I started a blog though.

This morning I narrowed down the sites  I follow but was bold enough to discover more promising blogs in the process. I  don’t really follow those who have thousand and thousands of followers (in the fifth digit) apart from the previous blogs which I’ve been so faithful following throughout the years.   There is now a total of 238 blogs I follow in earnest, maybe some ten of it practically new to my site.  I’d like to think that when you click to follow a particular post or the whole blog for that matter you are also prepared to at least make some comments from time to time or maybe  just clicking like is the way to go. I am not expecting that those I follow will in turn follow me too but that happens most of the time.  Oh well, what’s the use of having a public blog if you won’t interact with  people you meet online. I totally don’t agree that you’ll just write a post and publish it on the net with just you reading it. Of course, it would make you happy  if people notice what you write about. It would particularly make you happy when all those stats relay a number you didn’t really expect. It makes you even happier when friends and fellow bloggers interact with you. That makes blogging worthwhile.

For the past years, I never attempted to make my blog a paid one. I really can’t afford the yearly subscription rates but instead I have separated my posts into five blogs although I don’t often update the other sites, not as regularly as this one.  The last time I looked, I still have a remaining 28% left to write here. One percent takes more blogs than you know sans photos which eat up a lot of your allowed free limits. I made my photo blog separate from this one but of course I still have to post those pictures from time to time.  I do write an average of 400 to 500 words per blog  post and yesterday I received another familiar logo from WordPress telling me about the spike in my stats.The exact message was:

Your blog, DREAMS AND ESCAPES, appears to be getting more traffic than usual! 45 hourly views – 7 hourly views on average
A spike in your stats.

Who wouldn’t be glad of this?  Of course I am happy about it.

 

 

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