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Posts Tagged ‘guilty pleasures’


It’s a fact that ours is the longest Christmas celebration in the whole world. Nothing could compare with the Simbang Gabi or the dawn masses that end on the day before Christmas. Where in the world could you find the whole family, extended families and sometimes close friends and other relatives celebrating Christmas together under one roof, sharing Noche Buena food, going to mass together, having fun with the kids and the whole rigmarole of exchanging gifts and jumping with joy because you got what you wished for? Or maybe you have given enough hint to your son and daughter that you want this and that without putting a hole in their pockets.

I remember one Christmas long ago, when my son was still in his teens, he told us that he did not want to receive gifts that he needs but he would be happy with something that he wants – the needs being the usual handkerchiefs, underwear, socks  etc. and the wants listed as a new jacket, books, gadgets   or some  simple do-it-yourself  things that he loves.

So how do you lessen stress and enjoy the holidays?  You can really plan ahead on what to prepare  by listing all the things you need and buying them at least  a month, three or two weeks before Christmas. One of the best recipes that we usually cook  in advance is the  embutido. Embutido is a Filipino style meatloaf that can be served hot or cold depending on your  taste and they can be stored in the freezer for as long as a month. There are times when I do  my Christmas shopping as early as the month of September and by November, all gifts are wrapped and labeled.  Do your Christmas shopping all year round. Be on the look out for items that you think would be appreciated by your loved ones. And when December comes, you don’t have to join the Christmas rush because you have saved time by planning ahead.

Don’t feel obliged to reciprocate each single item that you received from someone you didn’t get anything for, a simple “thank you” would be enough.

And there are only 35 days,  11 hours and 50 minutes to go before Christmas.   Enjoy shopping.

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This morning, I spent a little time at the garden inspecting new blooms and trimming  some more. We have these berry trees behind the house.  A friend gave them as seeds  some years back and I planted at least six.  They are all bearing fruits now. Some branches are so close to the cloth line at the back so I have to trim them too. I thought of arranging them in a vase. I just added two palm leaves and bingo, they look great.

 

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It’s been a busy week!

I haven’t posted for quite a while but I had time to finish gardening, trimming the carabao grass, shaping our Eugenia and  gold dust plants and replanting some white  grass which were  uprooted by our three playful kitties.

My back and arms ached a little so I have to take a rest almost the whole day just catching up on reading and visiting  some new blog posts here.  I actually read two e-books in three days. Not my normal kind of authors and books  but I enjoyed reading both.  Sometimes when you haven’t read love stories for so long, it’s lovely to discover that they are as engrossing and as interesting as those memoirs and historical fictions that you normally read.  Good life and happy endings.

According to xmasclock.com, it’s 38 days, 5 hours and 7 minutes before Christmas. Hooray! I am  really looking forward to the happy days ahead.

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Good news!

We have a new internet provider. We replaced  PLDT Homebro with Globe broadband and  it  is ten times faster than the former.  Monthly fee is a little costly but the convenience of having a faster connection is just wonderful.  Maybe now I could watch those free Hallmark Christmas movies on YouTube without having to wait for so many minutes  for it to upload.  Lately we’ve had problems with the old  one. Sometimes the connection stops for a minute then it’s on again. News  reports say that the Philippines has one of the slowest internet connections in Asia, Singapore being the fastest.

I am thinking of  applying at 51Talk for extra income but that is still a plan.  They pay teachers by the hour spent teaching English language. It is a home-based job.   Maybe one of these days, I’ll think about it.

 

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Had to attend the early morning mass so we could decorate later.

We went out for a while to buy  Christmas LED lights,  all of 24 feet with 300 steady lights.  Just enough for our 7-foot tree.  I had to make sure the box has an ICC   (Import Commodity Clearance) mark meaning it was previously checked by the  Dept. of Trade as to its use and safety. I got so excited seeing all the decor displayed  so we decided to change the color motif.  This time, it is silver and gold.  I was able to use my gold angels but have to buy some more in the process. My goodness Christmas decorations have definitely gone up. It is not so surprising that even a small decor of Santa is worth almost a thousand pesos.

I took a close-up shot when we tried lighting it a while ago. It’s been a couple of years since we put up a tree. Most of my decor are table top and wall hangings. This time thought it would just be my porcelain Nativity set,  a “Merry Christmas” door hanging,   two table top decor, the tree and an arrangement which I did to complement the tree.

Merry christmas2

Tomorrow maybe, I will have to rearrange a bit. Decorating for Christmas is surely exciting, don’t you think?

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Mornings are definitely getting colder.

I was pleasantly surprised.  It was kind of foggy when we woke up.  Officially, “amihan” is finally here.  PAGASA  has declared the start of the northeast winds a few days ago. We call it “hanging amihan”.  It signals the end of the rainy season and the start of  cold weather until February of next year.

I love this season. One would not need to worry about flash flooding or heavy downpours although based on experience, this is where we sometimes have late strong typhoons.  The weather is good though, sunny and bright.

We  are thinking of putting up the Christmas tree but we still have to buy new sets  of lights to decorate it.  So lazy to go out 🙂  They have changed the mall hours, it’s now from 11am to 11pm until January 15  of next year. So if you don’t want to be caught in the  Christmas rush, you can do your  Christmas shopping now. I did mine two weeks ago but I still need a few more for close friends.   Some of us are planning a get-together one of these days of November.  Fr. Lovell and I agreed to meet after Christmas. He is busy with work and we won’t be able to see each other if we don’t make time for it.  I love meeting friends. I love the camaraderie it brings. I love getting in touch with each other. My close friends usually visit me here and I normally cook for them. Nothing that special, just good food to tide us over.

October has been a quiet one except for the days we went out for Nissa’s birthday and mine.  It was just the family. Looking forward to Nate’s birthday but then he’ll probably celebrate  it in school again  just like last year where Nissa ordered food for his classmates and they had it for snack.  Maybe we could go out again after his birthday or  after Nissa’s and my son-in-law’s  annual vacation  (mandatory leaves) scheduled this month.

Of course, I am excited for Christmas, who would not be? xmasclock.com says it’s 51 days, 8 hours and 34 minutes to go before the day.

 

 

 

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I grew up in the sixties so I could really relate.

I was in grade school when I first heard of The Beatles. My high school years were all about the 60’s music and early 70’s too.  Last night after dinner while I was in front of my PC reading blog posts, Josef entered the room and said “you will surely enjoy this Ma”  placing his cellphone near me.  Then I heard those lovely tunes of the 60’s.  Various artists, so many songs. They took me back to  my early childhood. I listened for more than an hour to lovely songs  of old. I asked him if he downloaded them from YouTube. He said he didn’t.  Think of The Animals, The Hollies, The Monkees, Simon and Garfunkel, Frankie Valli, Dave Clark Five,The Fifth Dimension, Roy Orbison   to name a few. There are so many of them, I could not remember all the groups but the songs  are so familiar. I remember the cassette tape I had before about the British Invasion and those CDs I used to buy on soul music of the 70’s. Now I only listen on YouTube while using the computer.

It makes me think, the 60’s  were  the most productive years  when it comes to this type of music.  Feel the beat.  Listen to the music.

 

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