I am getting nervous. I’ve been monitoring weather reports, press briefings, special coverage in preparation for the coming typhoon (it has already entered Phil. Area of Responsibility) and searching on other web pages about typhoon Ruby. It’s ironic that the very name Hagupit, a Tagalog word which means lash, blow, beating or strike is the international name of a typhoon which the Philippines has contributed to the list of tropical cyclones for this year. Locally, we have different names of weather disturbances. Ruby has been classified by JTWC (Joint Typhoon Warning Center) as super typhoon. As of 11am today, DOST PAGASA’s latest report said that typhoon Ruby has maintained its strength as it continues to move west-northwest towards Eastern Samar-Northern Samar area. For those who have heard of typhoon Haiyan, known as Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines, and is believed to be the strongest recorded tropical cyclone ever to make landfall and the fourth strongest tropical cyclone in history, with wind speeds (at landfall) of 195 mph (314 km/h) which devastated the Philippines last year, Samar in the Visayas is the same area that is on the track of typhoon Ruby. PAGASA has raised typhoon signal number 2 in several areas in Luzon and the Visayas and signal number 1 in other areas including Mindanao.
When you live in a place where typhoons and tropical cyclones are regular visitors, no matter how careful you are, there will always be that tight knot of fear in your heart. Nature as its worse is also one of the worst enemies of mankind. To think that those Yolanda survivors haven’t completely recovered yet from the wrath of the typhoon and here is another one that would surely bring more devastations.
They say that Metro Manila won’t be directly hit by the typhoon but it is included in its wide ring band that would bring intense rain which would likely bring flash flood again. I have done our groceries early this morning, buying canned goods and other items like batteries for flashlights and radio that we could use if worse comes to worse. I have recharged our lanterns and cellphones but still thinking of transferring our car to a higher place in the neighborhood. Better be prepared than be sorry.
I am praying hard just like some of our friends in the social media who have launched a prayer brigade that this typhoon won’t bring too much havoc and upheaval to our beautiful country. I pray that we would all have presence of mind, courage and faith that this storm would leave us still hopeful of a meaningful and happy Christmas 2014. I want to share this lovely prayer shared by the Diocese of Borongan, Samar.
We also need your prayers. Please pray for our country.
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Posted in city gardening, Close to Nature, family life, gardens, guilty pleasures, journeys, silence speaks, tagged a bit of myself, Close to Nature, family life, gardening, journeys, life, nature, thoughts and ramblings on June 9, 2014 |
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The monsoon rains woke me up. For some strange reasons, I could not sleep last night and here I am, wide awake after just a few hours of sleep. The past week has been a little busy, busier than most actually but at least our little garden is looking like a proper garden now. Except for the vacant space outside our fence which still needs to be cleaned of growing weeds and whatnot, our carabao grass is now properly trimmed, my lone gardenia shrub has been deadheaded of dried flowers that sprouted the previous month. I repositioned some of my Amazon lilies in a partly shaded area under our two lime trees. Such is the backbreaking job of a gardener but a fulfilling one too.
As usual, I’ve been able to catch up on my ever-growing fascination for making bracelets out of loom bands. A friend asked what will I do will all those colorful bracelets. Well, I enjoy looking at them in the first place and son says, it is really a good way to unwind. True, sometimes though, the design is a little complicated, you miss something in between and you have to repeat it all over again. Another friend said she enjoys looking at the colorful bracelets that I post on my timeline and she even suggested that I buy my supplies near their place where the loom bands are cheaper than buying them in malls. Why not, it is just a 15-minute jeepney ride from our place.
Last Sunday, I had a chance to talk to my grandson over the phone and I say, time flies, really! He can clearly utter, “Hi Nonna” now. He has learned so many words since the last time we saw him. I am impressed with Nissa’s desire to teach him everything. At eighteen months, he already knows a lot which reminds me, they went out to dinner last Sunday and Nissa sent me some pictures of Nate and another boy, a little older maybe, hugging each other. Long lost friends? Nah, they were just at the next table where my son-in law, Nissa and Nate dined. Children have that natural inclination to be affectionate. Nate has the habit too of waving his hands at the wait staff of any food establishment that they go to.
The joys of everyday things.
It’s a glorious morning, the sun is up and my plants are happy being drenched early from the rain. Hooray, this is my 1,450th post.
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Posted in city gardening, Close to Nature, Closer to God, flowers and blooms, guilty pleasures, home garden, photography, tagged Close to Nature, Closer to God, flowers and blooms, gardening, guilty pleasures, life, nature, photography, rain lilies on June 4, 2014 |
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You always get that nice smile on your face once you see a lovely surprise in your garden. I love flowers, they have that allure and beauty that are pure delight to the senses. There was a time when I used to document every lovely bloom in my garden and ambitiously thought of researching their growth patterns, what time of the year they usually show their faces but then being busy with everyday life sometimes keep one from doing just what you want to do. It is more of doing what you need to do.
This morning, I was watering the plants when I saw these lovely blooms growing side by side with my cacti plants. It hasn’t rained in our neck of the woods for quite sometime now although every afternoon, you’ll hear thunder when the sky gets dark. Rain lilies usually grow during the summer months when there is an occasional rain. Rain lilies belong to the hybrid Zephyranthes and this particular variety is called Zepherantes Beni Tama, a Japanese rain lily hybrid. The small clumps of bright pink, goblet shaped flowers have prominent yellow stamens at the center. They grow in full sun. I fell in love with these flowers when I saw them at a garden center in a large pot with pink flowers in almost every tip of the slender leaves.
Even my Mokara orchids are blooming non-stop. I saw several buds in different branches early this morning. It makes me remember another quote from Emerson, “Flowers are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty outvalues all the utilities of the world”. When life seems a little hard to bear, a garden is an Eden where peace, delight and peace reign.
Zephyranthes ‘Beni Tama’,
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Posted in city gardening, Close to Nature, Closer to God, flowers and blooms, gardens, guilty pleasures, home garden, nature, photography, tagged Close to Nature, Closer to God, flowers and blooms, gardening, guilty pleasures, nature, photography on April 16, 2014 |
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I was watering the plants early this morning when I noticed this single lovely bloom of our gardenia shrub. Pleasant surprises await when you least expect them. It’s only the middle of April and gardenias usually give that lovely scent during the months of May to June. I remember three years ago when this same gardenia shrub surprised us with a bird’s nest with three eggs right in the middle of Holy Week. It’s really amazing when you find something like this. I took a photo to remind me yet again the wonder of nature and the gifts it brings.
Gardenia is one of my favorite flowers. As I have mentioned in my previous blogs, it reminds me of the times when we used to grow them in our old house in the province. We had so many shrubs in front of the house so you can just imagine the intoxicating scents they have when they are in bloom. It also reminds me of the times that mom used to grow flowers in pots in every window of our old house. We used to have this what we call barandillas and they were full of flowering things like Hoya orchids, hydrangea, different colors of Bougainvillea and every flowering plant that I could think of. Summer brings back those memories. I love summer and the different colors it brings to my small garden. Here are a few shots I took this morning.
a hodgepodge of flowering plants from crossandra to lilies
shrimp plants, some call them golden candles
why do i always forget the name of these flowers. i only planted them once but they bloom every year.
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Posted in Close to Nature, Closer to God, family life, journeys, Philippines, photography, road trips, silence speaks, tagged Close to Nature, Closer to God, family life, guilty pleasures, nature, photography on March 24, 2014 |
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I know, I know, this comes a bit late again but I just have to post these two pictures that I took of one of the lovely places I went to with the whole family. The Farm at San Benito is located in Lipa, Batangas, a three-hour drive from our place in Rizal. One thing I do remember so well is the night swimming at their Secret Pool with the lush green all around. It was so relaxing and it makes me smile thinking about my reaction to the place when I first saw it, the “oohs and aahs” and the excited anticipation of exploring it.
…then you wish you could stay here forever just absorbing the silence.
…and maybe a copy of a favorite book in hand.
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Posted in city gardening, Close to Nature, flowers and blooms, gardens, home garden, life, nature, Philippine fruits, photography, tagged Close to Nature, flowers and blooms, gardening, home garden, life, nature, photography on March 2, 2014 |
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It’s nice to be back and share my garden finds. I guess it’s time to take hold of my camera again and take a few shots. Look what I’ve found.
I didn’t plant this tomato shrub but just saw it growing side by side with our peanut grass at the front garden. It was a delight to see these green tomatoes waiting to ripen. Something comes to mind, botanically speaking, tomatoes are fruits but we consider them vegetables. How’s that again? I am getting confused.
Our two jackfruit trees are laden with fruits growing in almost every tip of each branch. The sad thing though, not all of them will grow big at all. Mom says the fruits with smooth skin are the ones that would grow big and ripen, the rest will just dry up and fall. Every morning, I would count the fruits, can’t wait to harvest some in a month or two.
One thing I love about our calamansi trees (we have two) are the scents of the flowers. Calamansi or Philippine lime bear fruits all year round and they are perfect in almost any dish that need a little spicing up. They could be used to marinate meat or as sauces for grilled or fried food. Ripe fruits are excellent as juices too.
Not to be left behind are my pink bougainvillea. I just love the pink blooms.
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Posted in life, photography, silence speaks, weekly photo challenge, Weekly Photo Challenge: Treasure, tagged Close to Nature, life, nature, photography, weekly photo challenge, Weekly Photo Challenge: Treasure on February 15, 2014 |
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That moment you let your hands click the shutter because your eyes saw something that delights your senses – a couple of lichens growing, showing life amidst decay, turning hope into joy. That moment that your hands itch to touch the soil and dig, plant a seed or two and let them grow. It evokes memories and you smile at the thought because you found a treasure. Afterall, they say, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.
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