Monday, September 27, 2010


I guess I just needed some space. I was able to take a walk while the kids slept this afternoon and I'm coming to terms with the big 34. I don't really know why it is such a big deal, It isn't even one of those numbers that shout "milestone!"

At 30, I didn't get to do a lot of celebrating as I was pregnant with our first. We had a quiet dinner in some restaurant I can't remember. I don't remember any presents, just that there was the big storm, Milenyo and there was hardly any place that had electricity. Hmm, I'm begining to remember it now... we ate at Masas. Reasonably priced Filipino food.

See, all I needed was space.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


So I turn 34 in two days.

I've been through a whole range of emotions in the past few days. I've just finished with sadness, dreading, fear and worry.

Today, I'm just pissed.

I'm pissed that I will be at work for an extended day. I'm pissed that my hubby won't be home til past 9pm. I'm pissed that I moved my family celebration from Sunday to Tuesday because in-laws couldn't make it on Sunday... then they inform us last night that they won't be around on Tuesday either. I'm pissed because hubby and I are buying a new car, so I'm pressured to pick a cheaper restaurant and not go to the one I really want to.

It's just birthday  blues, I tell myself. *sigh*

Friday, September 17, 2010

candy at noon

My son was eating one of these orange candy slices for the first time today. He rushed into the room to show me what Ama (Grandmother) had given him.

"Mommy, look! I have a (drops voice to a whisper) candy!"

I don't allow him a lot of sugar.

"It's orange and yummy and... has little yummy sands on it. Can I eat it?"

Seeing as it was 10 minutes to noon and he hand't had his lunch yet.... I said yes. He rushed off taking little nibbles and licks.

I overhear Ama asking him in the other room: "Did mommy say you could eat it?"
"Yes, Ama."
"Ok, what do you say to Ama?" (She must have been fishing for a thank you.)

"Good job Ama, you make good candy!"


My friend Yen  wrote about fears on her blog, and it got me thinking. I used to have a phobia of plugging things in after I blew off the skin from 3 fingers. That's why hubby calls me Sparky. I'm over it now, but my breath still catches when a spark pops out while I'm plugging.

My son hasn't shown any prevalent fears yet, luckily. Maybe it's because he's a boy (I don't mean to be sexist, but they're REALLY different). I wish he'd be more afraid, really. Last week, he refused to leave the toy store so we left him there. I watched him through the window while Paul, Hero and the yayas went off to the restaurant. 20 mins later, he was still happily playing. I even had the salesman try to scare him, but no dice.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

a little project

My son is a big fan of maps. He's got a terrific sense of direction and knows exactly where the toystore is in any mall we frequent. When we eat at a restaurant, I've always got a pack of crayons ready to draw him a map or set of train tracks on the back of the paper placemat (because the restaurants we like are classy like that). Hubby and I have drawn approximately 100 maps, we estimate. Each getting soggy and wet at the end of each meal.

I recently found a scrap of tarpaulin (sp?) left over from our daughter's birthday party. We used it as the backdrop of her photo booth (a present from godparents). The tarp is really durable, we used it underneath a picnic blanket to keep our butts dry (but it was too slippery), underneath finger painting projects and it's final incarnation (or so I thought) was to cover the unsightly corkboard in my classroom. The scrap was from the bottom end that was longer than the board.

So I took my handy permanent markers and drew him a map. The houses have numbers or letters (he's learning them now) and there is a gas station, bakery, bookshop, zoo, hospital, church and swimming pool in the neighborhood too. And a river runs through the town.

I brought it home and he ran to the toy cabinet to find his cars. There was no talking to him for the rest of the afternoon.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

church going

We don't get to church as often as I'd like. With two little kids, it's pretty crazy to have them there and allow me to concentrate on what's going on.

Living in a predominantly Catholic country, affords me some opportunities I would not get anywhere else. I can go to mass virtually anywhere I want to because there is mass EVERYWHERE. The hospital, all the malls, parks, you name it. And the churches in my city are only about a 5-7 minute drive away from each other. I really should not have an excuse.

So we went to mass at the mall  yesterday. We got there 30 minutes early (it gets full, fast) and had to be satisfied with 3 seats in one area and 2 seats in another.

I has my hubby walk the kids around to get them a bit tired while the nanny and I saved our seats. I hoped it would keep them calm for at least PART of the mass.

And it succeeded... for a while. My daughter hummed through most of the songs, even if she hadn't heard them before. and midway though the homily, my son heard (I know! He was listening!!!) the word "Bible" and he perked up, started squirming in his seat. I asked what was wrong and he burst out with his rendition of "God Made Me."

After much shushing and laughing, he quieted down. He laughed at the mention of pigs (the gospel was the prodigal son) and and asked me what a fatted calf was. I whispered a quick explaination, followed by his aghast, "We eat cows?!"

I must say, my three year old is pretty darned funny. But then again, I'm biased. :)

early mornings

Monday morning after a 3 day weekend. I actually have Mondays off, being that I only work part-time, so this is a 4 day weekend for me.

I had planned to go to a big bazaar this morning with some friends but one of the has started work and the other didn't plan on waking up in the morning AT ALL. Haha, the life of an unemployed single person. I don't think I miss it really. It looks like I'll be going to the bazaar with mom, sis an my daughter. We're all self-serving shoppers so I doubt I'll get any decent opinions on my "how do I look" queries.

I enjoy the mornings, though I may complain about it often. The temperatures are cooler, my bed is snugglier and the kids are asleep. Hehehe. I quietly slipped out of bed and started preparing my son's snack and lunch for school. Today I boiled shrimp, peeled them and put them over his rice. His snack was cheese cubes, apple slices, cheerios and 3 foil wrapped chocolate coins.

My daughter is "nagpapalaki" according to her nanny. Loosely translated that means she's growing. She sleeps much longer these past few mornings. I wake and breathe in the smell from the top of her head, letting the fine hair tickle my nose.

Today is going to be wonderful. I can tell.

Friday, September 10, 2010

the events surrounding the birth of our little Hero 1

Hubby and I were completely surprised that I was pregnant. We were sure we wanted a 2nd child, but didn't think it would happen so soon. We'd been having a few little fights here and there, and I guess it was "the honeymoon's over" kind of phase.

I was hesitant to tell my friends and family. Our son was 1, but he'd be 2 and 3 months when the baby was born. I wasn't sure I was ready to have two kids in diapers.

But I took a deep breath, and a few days, and the nausea struck. Along with it was the thrill. A baby!

Our friends and family welcomed the news, some had even guessed before the announcement. Perhaps it was the eight shades of green I fluctuated between throughout the day. 
Hubby and I took every teachable moment to tell our son that he's soon be an ahia, a big brother. We showed him the fun his cousins had together. we bought books with siblings in them. For the record, "The Bobsey Twins" are not for 2 year olds.

But he somehow learned, and he loved the idea.
Our friend took this picture for a slideshow on how our church group is growing. (photo by Cres Yulo)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

can't beat it

I'm sitting in my classroom, taking a break. Having a chicken parmigiana roll and sea salt chips.

Enjoying the quiet.

Monday, September 6, 2010

bad karma

I was really upset yesterday and lashed out by posting a mean (albeit nameless) status message on facebook.

Today, I will try to rack up good karma. Things I have done so far:
-bought chocolate pretzels for my 3rd grade students as an apology for letting them off late last time
-sat by, and quietly explained a video to a "lost" 2nd grader
-held my tongue when I wanted to say something snarky.

I'll keep going God, but I still don't think the world would be a better place if that girl passed the bar exam.

Foxley and Isley

My son has a toy fox that he loves. He named it Foxley. My daughter wants it. So, yesterday, I bought her a similar toy. She calls it Isley.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

On A Whim

I was in the mall the other day and stepped into Lucky Brand. I love/hate that place. I love it because the clothes fit beautifully, they are just my style and the designs are just beautiful. And of course, I hate it because a t-shirt costs a third of my monthly salary.

Yes, I live in the third world, and I'm used to foriegn brand name clothing to be pricey. But a a hoodie for Php 10,000? Jeans for Php 20,000? Really?

The only reason I went in was the huge "50% OFF!" signs in the window.

My "on a whim" project"

I saw a stack of hoodies laid out on the sale table, and the design interested me. It was an embroidered hamsa. Hippie, timeless. 10 thousand pesos. I can't afford that. But...

I could MAKE that.

And so I did. Well, I'm almost done.

When I was at work the next day, the kids were quietly writing. I sketched out a hamsa and liked it. So I grabbed the washable markers I had for the students and proceeded to draw it onto my hoodie.

At first, I embroidered the hood with a stylized sun, and now I'm working on the hand. I've got a mad urge to finish it quickly. I have to finish this soon, because those mad urges tend to fade quickly. I've got unfinished stuff lying around. *sigh*

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Saturday Date Nights

Hubby and I have been trying to do a weekly date night. Not easy when you've got busy schedules and two little kids. After about a year without "us" time, we realized that we lost each other somewhere along the way.

We usually go out on Saturdays, so we leave the kids with his parents and head out for what we call our "adventures." We pick a direction to drive and find a restaurant we've never been to before. There have been some misses along the way, but my favorite one was our first adventre date on opening night of this year's World Cup.

Korean food has always been a favorite, ever since we lived with a large Krean community up in Subic. So we were set on heading to the Korean area in BF. We passed on a few restaurants based on their looks. Our criteria included: number of cars outside (other people wanted to eat there too), it NOT looking like a girly bar (after all, we didn't know what the signs meant), and if it looked like there were Koreans there (they're the best judges, right?).

We finally settled on a restaurant and entered, there were several empty tables. Perfect! Amazing smells enveloped us. Sizzling plates of pork, the sharp scent of kimchi, metal bowls of hot, steamy rice. We'd found the right place.

Only, they didn't have room for us. At 5:45 in the late afternoon, they were fully booked. Every table had a reserved sign, and save for one table of rowdy (drunk) men, the place was empty. We begged for them to seat us, since the signs had 7:30 or even 8:00pm reservations. They finally gave us a table in a large private room in the back. The waitress told us, "You sure you want to sit here? You won't be able to watch the game!"

And that's when we realized that Korea was playing the opening game of the World Cup! We'd totally forgotten, thrilled to have grown-up time together.

We had our (very) private dinner in the back room of Bi Won Korean restaurant. We talked and laughed like we werestill just dating. It was a blast.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

rainy Manila mornings

I usually wake up at around 6:30am to get my son's school snacks ready, have some quiet time on the computer and maybe even a few minutes with the hubby before he leaves for work.

With the start of our rainy season, it has gotten harder and harder to get up. Today, I was up at 7 and it took all my strength to pull myself ot of bed. The clouds were thick and dark and the rain was coming down steadily. I wanted to crawl back under the covers and cuddle up next to my kids, and spend the day making pillow forts.

Apparently, my son had the same idea. It was crazy trying to get him out of bed to go to school. He, king of "I don't want to sleep," whined and begged and pleaded for me to let him get back to sleep. As my mother in law was picking him up to go to school, I didn't see a chance for the little guy. She owns the school, so he's gotta be there ON TIME.

In full pajamas, I picked him up, carried him to the car and buckled him in. I handed her his school clothes and waved them buh-bye, the sad whines of a sleepy boy still in my ears.

Sometimes I love rainy days, sometimes I just hate them.