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Posts Tagged ‘guilty pleasures’


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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It’s always an early morning mass for us during Sundays. I usually wake up earlier than 5am to prepare for Sunday breakfast before we go the the 6:30 am mass. It s always nice to attend Sunday masses early. The weather is cool and the church is not too full. It was a good homily with Christ’ temptation at the mountain for a start. The good priest even quoted a popular song from long ago. It’s the first Sunday of Lent

It was written in Tagalog, sorry for that. It only mean that a lot of lives were destroyed because of greed and temptation. I like it though, the message is so clear. Keep yourself away from “tukso”.

Kayrami nang winasak na tahanan
Kayrami ng matang pinaluha
Kayrami ng pusong sinugatan
O, tukso, layuan mo ako

We dropped by the grocery store right after the mass then bought a kilo of sweet potato and saging saba at the wet market for snacks. Since Sunday is always a lazy day for us, and it means no preparation of elaborate meals, we also bought dinuguan for lunch from our suki (fave vendor). They sell lechon and paksiw na lechon too. Lechon is a whole roasted pig. They make the best so far.

Sundays are also family days for us. We spend them together at home reading, listening to music or just talking  or having conversations and kwentos. We catch up on things that happened during the week whether at work or at home. Sometimes, we also do grocery shopping on Sundays.

One of my nieces is getting  married on Tuesday, she’s the youngest of my oldest brother’s kids. They are born-again Christians so they have a different kind of nuptial ceremony from us. We are looking forward though to it.

Do you also spend Sunday like we do? Is it a lazy day for you too?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Howdy guys!

I received three more key rings yesterday from my niece based in Bahrain. She bought them when she took her vacation in Jordan, Israel and  France.O h my, I now have  more than 200 key rings not counting those I am presently using.  Got a white mug too from the Abuel reunion held last February 11 in our province.

gifts2

There was this coin purse with a Notre Dame commemorative coin inside it which my niece attached to the package. So glad to have those lovely key rings from those places she went to last year and the other prior to that.

My collection began when I was still working at Bank of the Philippine Islands several years ago. One of my office mates gifted me with a gold-plated key ring in the shape of a T-shirt and marked No. 1. Since  then several were added to the loot once my  close friends learned of my penchant for collecting. I have  several now except in other countries in Europe where  I only have a few. It is nice to see them lined up sometimes when I clean them. Aside from the key rings, I also used to collect stationeries of different sizes but now that I am no longer active writing by long hand, I stopped buying. I still have some though in different colors and designs too.

It’s a good thing e-books have become the in-thing nowadays. My book shelves are overflowing.Double shelving is now a must for me. I tend to collect several books by the same authors once I like what their writing style. I have some signed copies of books sent by my friends from the US.  Except for those Michael Vey series, I almost have all copies of RPE books on hand. I also value my hardbound copy of On Writing by  Stephen King. It’s that kind of book where you’ll learn a lot of writing tools. I thought at first it was his autobiography but it was more on how he started writing.

How about you, what are your hobbies?

 

 

 

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This is my 3rd blog post for this month. Hopefully I would be able to  make one every day. Wishful thinking so to speak.

For the past month and the past few days, my blog post Another Year To Be Thankful For has been on my most read blog, I don’t know why. Maybe it got stuck there for a time but it earned the usual number of visits. It was my birthday post more than three years ago.  Just a simple thank you to all those who made my birthday a lovely one.

a-man-called-oveI am about to finish the book A Man Called Ove.  It is the story of a retired man who is disgruntled about life in general. He could be your typical grandfather or your neighbor.Deep within with his close friends and loved ones, he is a softie.I found out that it was adapted into a movie  but I am not sure if it is as good as the book.  I think this is one of my favorite books for this challenge, so far that is. I may encounter more along the way but this book is so good. What an excellent writing  a different kind of reading altogether. The author is Fredrik Backman from Stockholm, Sweden. The book is  one of Sweden’s most popular literary exports.  Find out for yourself, if you haven’t read it yet.

Yesterday, we celebrated Ash Wednesday. Went to mass early for the imposition of the ashes. It was a day of fasting and abstinence for those reaching 14 to 59 and a day of abstinence  beyond that.  Ash  Wednesday is the beginning of Lent in the Catholic church’s liturgical calendar.  My co-admins and I are busy at the Catholic page which we maintain at Facebook. These are those times that we could share lots of reflections, news and anything about Catholicism.

Thank you WordPress for the nice numbers. Thank you blogger friends for always commenting and liking my posts.  Love you all.

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Lately, I saw this father and daughter singing together on Metaspoon.  The guy played the guitar  as they sang together. The daughter  is probably  about  four or five years old. It is lovely to see them together.

Those aha  moments when you smile and you laugh just because you are happy. Last Saturday, I was surprised when I saw Nissa and Nate at the gate. They took  a commute  from their place to ours just to see me. My son-in-law was left at home early that morning.  They took  their breakfast with us. I inquired if Nissa brought milk for Nate. She said she didn’t because Nate eats a lot during meals so he does not need to drink milk.

We played blocks and touching ball, priceless few hours of being together, with not a care in the world except to laugh , be merry and play. You put yourself  being a child of four, carefree and happy. Picture-taking goes in the back seat  with no attempt to bring your camera out. Or maybe simply, you forget. The things we do to make the moments  something to remember, something to think about when they are gone.

I am reading a beautiful book. It is actually a contemporary  love story. my third book  of love stories since I began my 2017 reading challenge. It’s quite a nice change from the memoirs and historical books I am fond of reading.  The plot may sometimes be exaggerated or overrated but it goes well with the overall appeal of the book.  I am looking forward though to finishing Mary Oliver’s Upstream and Lang Leav’s  Memories. The first one is a selection of essays by Mary Oliver while Memories is composed of poems by Lang Leav. I am reading them  both in installment. a way to prolong the lovely prose and  superb style of writing. Sometimes you wish you could write like they do – wishful thinking if I may say.

Those aha moments. Those moments when you are just enjoying everything. Those moments that are deeply felt  in  the heart. Those unforgettable moments. You want to make them last  forever.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s raining.  And it’s been raining since this morning. That kind of rain that never seems to stop, we call it “tigatik” in our language.  Brrr….it’s cold in here.

It’s a perfect time for that hot cup of coffee or  that pot of hot green tea.  Along with some other gifts last Christmas,  Nissa gave me tea biscuits and a box of organic green tea from Marks and Spencer.  I have lots of tea flavors actually but lately I was more addicted to morning coffee than afternoon tea. I can’t resist this though.

tia-a

That first sip warms my throat and it’s pretty good. It really makes you think of cold and rainy afternoons.

By the way I have just updated my  other blog (it’s not new, it’s been there for about a year now) at WordPress. I posted several photos taken with friends.  If you have time,  you may visit it too and maybe, just maybe click follow.  It is different from  Dreams and Escapes because it is mostly pictures  with a bit of writing and reflections on the side. I call  it Dreams Never End. Some of you are already following it. Eventually, that would have to replace this blog because I only got 28% more free space on my allowed limits that is why I don’t want to post more pictures here.

How was the start of your new year? More than a week is already gone. It seems like time is too fast.   I am done with 5% on my commitment to read 150 books on Goodreads.  Just finished seven books, four books ahead of schedule.  It’s a nice phase. Just love those books I’ve found.

It is a rainy Tuesday, I hope it is sunny on your side of the planet.

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I have a little good news. I went back to SSS yesterday and what do you know, my  pension is ready for credit.  Alleluia!  But two months of processing is quite long enough.

Got to trim our carabao grass again, replant some flowering plants and uproot some dead ones.   I planted  two more pineapple crowns  behind the house. Those I planted earlier are growing nicely, let me see, I have seven in all now. I hope the first one would produce a  flower soon.

The life of a gardener – plenty of time to enjoy the morning sun and the afternoon breeze. Sometimes  it is quite a bonus to listen to the visiting sparrows. A hot cup of coffee is always welcome at the break of dawn, when the world is still asleep  and the quiet could be felt.

I stay here in this corner most mornings drinking a hot cup of coffee  and listening to the sparrows sing.

I stay here in this corner most mornings drinking a hot cup of coffee and listening to the sparrows sing.

Despite the busy days  at the garden, I was able to finish four books at the start of the challenge. I am in the middle of reading my 5th book now. Peter  Mayle’s two books, A Year In Provence and Tojours  in Provence (the  sequel)  were such a joy to read. I learned so much about what life was like in Provence.  Now I am beginning to enjoy Italy, it is such a lovely place too.

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