Category: Uncategorized

A Tent Story

When one of our loved ones passes away, we go through different stages of grief. First there’s that heart wrenching, too painful kind of grief that you usually feel right after the funeral, where even the sight of his things and the mere thought of him makes you cry. Then after a few months or so, you go through that second stage of grief where he just seems to be there, you feel his presence and you imagine hearing his voice but the thought of him doesn’t evoke buckets of tears anymore. After a year or two, whether you have realized it or not, you step on to that stage of grief called moving on where that person just becomes part of your memory and not your everyday life anymore. You think of him in a nostalgic kind of way and remember him more with fondness and not sadness anymore. At this point it is very easy to share his being to other people.
I would like to think that I am at that last stage of grieving. I would like to say that now, I can easily take my daddy in and out of that corner in my heart that holds all my fondest memories of him anytime I want to without feeling even that small twinge of pain. There are still times though when I get all panicky when I would realize that days or weeks had passed without me visiting his grave and thinking about him. But then again, I would also realize that I haven’t really forgotten him at all, I have simply accepted that he is now gone.
My daddy passed away but I know he will forever remain in my life. Sometimes I ‘d like to think that he is just there smiling down on us. I see him in the most unlikely circumstances and situations. Like this morning when my husband and I woke up at 3 am because of the strong winds battering our house because of the typhoon. The first thing that we thought about was the tent that my husband put up in his grave for our visit today and tomorrow. I was depressed the whole time because I know with a tent like ours, there’s no way it could’ve survive the storm. You see my dad was a perfectionist, he was during his lifetime too vain and too proud. He always wanted nothing but the best. I felt that we failed him because the typhoon would surely have wrecked the whole tent, candles and flowers. As soon as the strong wind stopped, my husband went to the cemetery all prepared to pick up the broken pieces of our tent but then much to his surprise, in the midst of all the broken tents in the cemetery, there stood one solitary blue tent, our tent. The candle holders were not broken and the flowers were still blooming safely in the basket. I don’t know how it happened, but I would like to think that my dad held on to that tent in his desire to have the best one because he sure wouldn’t want a wrecked one standing on his grave. He would rather “die” than be caught in an ugly one.hahaha. That is so like daddy. Of course it could’ve been because my husband and his friend made a good job mounting it up, but there’s really no way, no way at all for an ordinary tent to survive that kind of typhoon unless some strange thing happened. It still amazes me right at this moment just thinking about it, like the many times my daddy amazed me with the many different ways he showed his love when he was still alive. I miss him a lot and I am thankful that He still continue to make his presence known even in the most unlikely circumstances.:)

This Too Shall Pass

Most of you must have been in shock like me when news of the flashfloods in some parts of Metro Manila were being aired in the different TV channels last Saturday. It was something I never would have imagined happening to the people living in these places, yet at the back of my mind I know that this has long been coming. It was like a bad dream unfolding right before our very eyes. Although my family and I were not directly affected, I felt an urgent need at that time to do some head count just to make sure my relatives and friends are okay. Like everyone, I fervently prayed for the storm to pass, for the rain not to start again and for the victims’ ordeal to be over. We are up to now tuned in to the news, eager to know the progress of the rescue efforts and the well being of the people still trapped or waiting to be rescued.
To the victims of this tragedy: you must have been at some point during your ordeal cursing heaven for this tragedy that has befallen you or your family. You must have been at some point questioning the universe why it has to happen to you. I can just imagine how difficult it must be but I guess when things like this happen, when tragedy like this struck, we need not understand, we need not comprehend. We just need to embrace everything, how difficult it may be, and allow people, help–God’s presence– to come to our life. We just have to have that blind trust and faith in God that he will make everything alright. We just have to believe that eventually things will get better. This too shall pass.
To those spared by this tragedy: we must have done something good or we must have made the universe happy at some point to be spared of this tragedy. Or maybe we are for now just on the other side of the fence waiting in line for our turn to receive our crash course on life 101. Let us thank our lucky stars, our guardian angels, our God for giving us another chance to realize just how lucky we are. Our help, in whatever way we can, will serve as the balm that would heal the broken spirits of the victims of this tragedy. Let us make them feel that they are not alone in this fight, let us make things alright for them. The worst is over, with our help, things will get better for them. This too shall pass.
Omnea en bonum (everything for the good)

A Tribute to Cory Aquino

I have blogged about almost anything and everything under the sun, from the most trivial to my most personal. This one I promise myself I will do just to show how deeply I admire the greatest woman that I have ever known in my lifetime, former Pres. Cory Aquino. I did not get the chance to meet her in person but just like the thousands of Filipinos who woke up last Saturday to the news of her passing, I can feel that great loss now that she is gone.
Yesterday, I devoted all my classes to Pres. Cory Aquino. I prepared videos that I showed to my grade two students so they would know the vital role that she played in our country’s history. What struck me most yesterday was the answer that most of my students gave when asked who Cory Aquino was. Most of them only know her as the mother of TV personality Kris Aquino. I cannot blame them for that because they really were not here yet during the people power revolution. But still, I felt that deep sadness in knowing that later on Cory Aquino will just be reduced as one of the figures in our children’s history books. That she would be known only as one of the characters that played part in one of the many historical events that happened in our past. That they would only recognize her as the woman who was brave enough to fight for democracy but would never really understand the magnitude of that action unless we really take the time to explain it to them in great lengths.
Cory Aquino’s greatness did not come from the fact that she bravely fought against Marcos to restore democracy but from that inner strength that she has consistently shown all throughout her lifetime, that only a person of extraordinary character can possess. She may not be the greatest president the Philippines has ever had but she was for me the greatest leader the Filipinos have ever seen. She did not rule but instead lead. She mostly lead not according to the laws that govern our society, for even that can bend and weaken in the hands of mishandled power, but according to her principles and beliefs that were anchored on church’s teachings and were guided by God. She did not lead with an iron hand as expected of head of states but instead lead using the gentle but firm hand of a mother. That is the reason why she did not have many “followers” but instead many supporters even up to her death. She detested creating noise but quietly went about her ways doing as much work as she can with deep fervor. She bowed down and worshiped no one but God. She draws her strength not from the power that was thrust to her by her presidency but from the rosary that she held in her hands each day, even up to her last days. The words that came from her lips were not mindless bragging nor broken promises but instead words of hope, encouragement, love, support and most of all prayers.
Tomorrow, the whole nation and perhaps the whole world will give their final respect to our dear Pres. Cory Aquino as she makes her final journey to her resting place. Let us all pick up where she left of and continue to fight for her causes and advocacies. Let us continue her devotion to the rosary and to Mama Mary and most importantly, let us all continue the work that she has started, for our children and for our children’s children. May her spirit continue to live on.
You make us proud Pres. Cory Aquino, may you rest in peace…

My Long Running Birthday Obsession

My birthday is always a big deal for me. Eversince I was a kid, I consider my birthday a red letter day. When the calendar hits June I would start counting the days till my birthday comes and I would keep on reminding my family about it. They usually are amused whenever I am in my pesky birthday mode. I have to say that I haven’t gotten over this feeling of great anticipation whenever my birthday is near. I love my birthday because I usually use it as a weapon to “force” my family to give me something that I want. They usually cannot resist buying it for me since I would really give them a hard time if they don’t. 🙂 I would also use it as a perfect excuse to be waited upon. I would like to think also that it gives me a license to be total BRAT just for one day. That’s why I love my birthday. I used to think that I would forever be that kid who just can’t wait for her birthday to come.
For starters, I would make a list as early as June of the things that I would want for my birthday. When I was single, my dad and later my sister would see to it that I get what I wanted most from the list. When I got married, I learned to develop a subtle, not so obvious way of making my husband know what I want without having him thinking that I am the most demanding wife. There was a time when I lured him to the jewelry section of the department store totally unaware of my hidden agenda. I made a show of admiring with regret these fabulous bracelets and little heartbreaker trinkets of different colors of pink, silver, white and yellow (gold?). I also remembered last year their company was selling this really cute laptop and to make him know that I want that, I made a show of being totally captivated by it and told him endless tales of sleepless nights when I just can’t get it out of my mind. Most often though I would print out a picture of an amazing bag that catches my fancy in the internet and would very casually leave that colored printout ( so that he would get me the right color)on top of our desk in our house where he would surely, surely not miss it. Very often, okay, well 99.9% of the time he never fails me. I always get my most wanted gift each year for my birthday. This has become some sort of a game for me and my husband. I know secretly he waits each year for the crazy antics that I would do just so he would know what gift I would want him to give me. We always try to outdo each other in making the most obvious birthday gift a surprise for each other’s birthday. I know this seems shallow or childish or crazy to some, but for me, birthdays only come once a year and what the heck! It is the only time I allow myself to splurge on something or totally covet something.
But this year though is different. I have been having this funny feeling as my birthday is getting near. Although I made a printout already of my most coveted bag and let my husband know in no uncertain terms the dimensions of that bag that I like, I can’t seem to have that same giddy feeling I usually get whenever I am in my pesky birthday mode. For the first time, there is really noTHING that I want for my birthday this year…except for my family to be okay. We have been through a lot and I realized that this time I just want each member of my family to be alright . I want my mom to get through this stressful health situation that she is in right now. I want my little girl to slowly regain back her strength after being sick for days. I want my sister to finally have that happiness and peace of mind that she so desires and I want my husband to achieve all of his big dreams and grand plans. Nothing else this time, just that, oh well all of that actually. I guess its not really too much to ask for a birthday right? It would not really cost a thing to have all those “things”. In fact I would even gladly trade my (sigh!) bag or give away anything just to have those wishes coming true on this birthday. Oh well, I must really be getting old or it seems that the time when I would finally outgrow this “ birthday obsession syndrome” has finally come with this new developments in my birthday life. But I guess if that is case, “growing up” or “growing out of it” is not really so bad after all. I mean, I’m sure that everybody goes through this stage or is it just me? 🙂 oh well, bring on the cake, I will blow my candles now…
P.S. Birthday countdown: OMG! 2 days to go and its my birthday already! (there are some things really that you can never change)


Most of you would agree with me that being an optimist is one of the hardest thing to be especially if there are just too many negative things happening in our life at the moment. Some people have that gift of positivity in them while others, like me, have to struggle everyday to be that. It is much easier to whine, sulk, curse and hate the world most of the time rather than smile and take everything that life throws our way in stride. But have you ever wonder why you seem to be forever stuck in your negative patterns and why you seem to attract the very same things you hate the most? Well, it’s really because you are forever focusing on these thoughts. The mind has the power that can surpass all the powers of the superheroes combined. You actually attract what you think. So if you want good things happening in your life, be optimistic.
Optimism simply means focusing on the blessings that you receive each day rather than on your misfortunes. It is seeing each failure and mistake as opportunities to grow and learn. It is acknowledging and accepting your limitations as a person and being cool about it. It is seeing the good in each and every person that you meet (however hard that might be). It is giving yourself a pat on the back whenever you accomplish something, may it be big or small. It is not letting any put downs, gossips or bad hair ruin your day. It is choosing to snap out of your depressing/heartbroken state and bravely facing the world and moving on. It is accepting that you are exactly where you are supposed to be and not wishing to be some place else. It is making the most out of whatever situation you are in at the moment. It is thinking that everything happens for a reason. It is also about never giving up and always thinking that every problem has a solution. It is believing in the premise that everything will fall into place and will turn out right no matter what. It is always looking at the bright side of things. It is focusing on the “what is” rather than dwelling on the what “would have”, “should have” and “could have” been. It is forever keeping our hopes up and simply choosing to embrace life and everything that it has to offer.
Happiness is a choice that we make each day. We are the ones who call the shots in our life. So if you want to live the good life, think happy, positive thoughts.:)

My Great Singapore Experience

I have to say, that this is one of my best summer ever for I was able to travel and visit one of the most interesting country in Asia, Singapore. For a small country in terms of land area, I must say that Singapore has it all. Every space is maximized and not a single space is wasted. Smack right in the middle of the city you will find parks, mountains, rivers and forest reservations. It is urban planning at its finest. I love Singapore because it is very tourist friendly. I also like the no fuss, no frills, straight forward style of living. Everything is well thought out and organized. You just have to read and follow instructions well. We stayed for about a week and during this time we visited quite a number of interesting places…
This is an events place where plays, concerts and large functions are held. When we were there, the stage play, CATS, was showing. It is also known for its Durian-like structure which makes it one of the most popular architectural structures in Singapore. We had fun taking pictures around the place because the view is just great.
CHARGE: Free of charge (unless you would want to watch a concert or play)
Of course, trip to Singapore will not be complete without paying tribute to the famous Merlion (don’t ask me about the legend because I’ve simply forgotten all about it, pardon my anesthesia induced short term memory). It is a good 5-10 minutes walk from the Esplanade. We passed by this wonderful bridge with the great view of Singapore skyline at night. Better go there night time because the view at night is just perfect. We had to make lots of stops along the bridge to take pictures. From here you can see the flyer, the largest Ferris wheel in the world. The statue of the Merlion in this park is better looking than the one in Sentosa and this one is also a fountain, thus making it picture perfect. From here we rode the really nice tugboat that took us on a wonderful river cruise. We got a good view of the posh Fullerton Hotel and the strips of restos lining up Clarke Quay, which is the endpoint of the river cruise. You will love the gentle breeze and all that romantic feeling that a river cruise always brings on so better have your hubby along if you plan to do this. I didn’t, so I was just imagining him beside me.:)
CHARGE: Free of charge for the park and $ 6.00 per pax for the river cruise


Clarke Quay is the place to be if you’re looking for that perfect night out with friends. It has loads of restaurants and bars. There’s the Clinic Bar with an interesting set-up. Hospital beds as lounges and wheel chairs as guests chairs. You will be served in dextrose and get intoxicated by the alchohol shot! Nah, just kidding. Of course famous Hooters and Fashion bar are there together with the other popular restos and bars. There are about a hundred or so restaurants to choose from with delectable food and yummy cocktail drinks.
CHARGE: Free of charge when you step into Clarke Quay but full of charge if you take on one or two drinks and eat some yummy food there.
Since this is a Chinese country of course there’s a Chinatown, where you can get the best bargains for your pasalubongs. If you’re going to SG, I recommend you buy most of your pasalubongs here because the signature SG shirt is really cheap here compared to the ones in the mall. You can get them for like 3 for $10. See, such a bargain. You can also buy lots of cute trinkets and other Chinese goodluck charms for cheap. We bought some really cute jade bracelets and cellphone charmers as giveaways. Plus, picture taking is great here because of the bursts of colors. There are also temples around such as the Burmese and Indian temples that you can visit.
CHARGE: bring lots of money because you won’t be able to resists the good buys here
This is the place where Indians abound and I must say this is a shopper’s heaven. Everything in Mustafa is cheap, cheap, cheap. From branded perfumes, watches, shades, bags and homewares down to the candies, chocolates. The goods are cheap in this place because it has something to do with the tariff cuts/agreement. Anyway, basta cheap that’s all that matters. You can get a very good bargain there. Another place where you can indulge yourself and where you can buy your pasalubongs.
CHARGE: No charge except for the ones you’ll buy
If you love hitting the malls, this one’s for you because here you can find rows and rows of malls which at the time we went there were mostly on sale. In Takashimaya mall, there was an on going shoes and bags sale. 50% -70% off on branded items like Lacoste, Guess, Nine West, Aldo, Calvin Klein etc. etc. All your favorite shops you can find here, just wear your most comfortable shoes and be prepared to do a lot of walking.
CHARGE: Free of charge except for the ones you’ll buy
This is one of the best place I have been to in Singapore. It is home to one of the world’s vast primates collection. You will encounter here animals that are not present in most zoos such as the white polar bear, endangered species like walrus, penguins and sea lions, pumas, Leopard, cheetah, wolf and jaenas. One of the interesting species in the world, the white tigers, can also be found here. They also have a huge reptile collection as well as the animals that we come to love as we grow up like the giraffes, zebras, hippopotamus, elephant, kangaroos, white rhinoceros, flamingos etc. What is good about this zoo also is that it is a conservation and research center as well as a breeding site for most endangered animals. The zoo was able to recreate a place that is so close to the natural habitat of these animals that is why most animals are not in cages (well, except for the wild ones), they roam around their personal spaces. You will really get to be up close and personal with them. As you enter you will be given a map, you can either walk on foot and explore the whole zoo or ride on trams and just get off at certain points if you like. My sister, daughter and I decided to explore the zoo on foot and so we were leisurely walking around when we noticed at the side of the road a lizard/iguana looking reptile that is about one meter long cautiously walking along the road. When it spotted us rooted on the ground with our mouths hanging open, we quickly turned our backs and rode on the next tram that passed by. I’m sure it is harmless or else it wouldn’t be allowed to roam around but my sister remembered this tiny bit of information that those kinds like to chase people around so, just imagine us at that moment and you will get the picture. There are also scheduled animals shows such as Elephant Show, Dolphin Show, Bird Show, Penguin/Sea Lion Show everyday where you can pop in and watch. My daughter absolutely loved this. This is truly a great place to bring kids and kids at heart.
CHARGE: Entrance – Adult $16.87 and Child $8.41 ; Tram ride – Adult and $5 Child 2.50
This is also one of the must see places in Singapore. As the Singapore Zoo closes at 6, Night Safari opens at 7 in the same place. Of course here, you will get to view their vast collection of nocturnal animals. You can either go and explore on foot by yourselves or ride the tram. I suggest you ride a tram because you never really know what animals are lurking in the dark out there because like I said some are free to roam around (awoooo…hehehe). Flash photography is strictly prohibited for this will definitely render these nocturnal animals blind. There is an excellent tour guide in the tram who will get everyone familiarize with all the animals that you can see there. There is also a scheduled Animal show every night at 7:30 and 8:30. It was an entertaining show, the animals are very well-trained to show-off.:)
CHARGE: Adult $30 and child $27 : Tram ride $11
And now we come to my favorite place in Singapore, Sentosa Island. You have two options if you plan to go there. You can take the monorail from Harbour Front to Sentosa and back, or you can take the cable car (which we did) from Harbour Front to Sentosa and back. It was my first cable car ride and I must say, I felt a different kind of high when we were up there seeing the whole Singapore from a hundred feet high and seeing Sentosa island slowly coming into view. My daughter and I were all giddy and excited. I totally enjoyed this whole island very much. For me it is better than Disney. They have so much to offer, it’s like having a great birthday treat. There’s the Animal Encounters, Underwater World, Sky Tower, 4D Magix, Images of Singapore, Butterfly Park and Insect kingdom, Luge and Sky ride, Merlion Walk, Flying Trapeze and Songs of the Sea. There are also lots of beach bars, restaurants and cafes/ bistros in the island so food and comfort are not a problem. My daughter and I particularly like the 4D magix where you can feel the crabs pinch, the bees sting, birds flying and water splashes and oh what the heck, that whole kiddie feeling . During that time Pirates was showing. We were also surely captivated by the Songs of the Sea, a 30 minute show featuring pyrotechnics, water jets, brilliant lasers, captivating music and other dramatic effects. It was just simply amazing, that’s the only word that can describe it. You can also go visit and explore the three beaches in Sentosa, the Siloso beach, Tanjong beach and Palawan beach, which is considered as the southernmost point of Continental Asia. I suggest you allot two days if you plan to explore this island because the one whole day that we were there was just not enough.
CHARGES: Cable car two-way A $19/ C $9.50, Entrance $ 2, Animal and Bird encounters (free), Butterfly park and insect kingdom A $16/ C $10, Desperados $ 12, Dolphin Lagoon A $22.90/ C 14.60, Images of Singapore A $10/ C $7, Sentosa 4D Magix A $18/ C $ 11, Cine Blast A $18/ C $ 11, Songs of the Sea $10 per person, Underwater world A $22.90/ C 14.60, Tiger Sky Tower A $ 12/ C $8
Of course not to forget, before you head home, the city tour. Singapore downtown has a lot to offer. There are great structures that truly are an architect’s delight in this city. When we were there we visited Vivo City, which was cited as one of the best mall in the world. We also dined at Suntec City mall where IT Fairs are held. We checked out the Fountain of Wealth and passed by Rendevouz Hotel and Raffles Hotel, two oldest hotels to date. We also visited this quaint place Chijmes, which was actually a convent before but is now a fabulous place that is home to some nice restaurants. We also visited Singapore Art Museum, National Library , Singapore Management University and City Hall. The city is definitely as engaging as the other tourist spots.
CHARGE: free of charge (just a leisure walk around)
There are lots of different restaurants around–Chinese, Japanese, Indian and Thai to name a few, with great food. If you like food adventure, I highly recommend Glutton’s Bay near Esplanade, which serves all the local dishes. McDonald’s, KFC and other fastfood restos don’t serve rice plus the chicken that they serve is a little spicy. The food rates are relatively high if you will convert, so do not convert anymore if you want to really enjoy your meal.:)
Some travel tips: Although there are lots of taxis around with honest taxi drivers better ride the MRTand the bus to save money that you can just use for shopping and sight seeing. Buy a store value card in one of the stations to avoid having to get a ticket for every ride. You can also use this store value card when riding the bus. If you plan to ride the bus, check which bus no. will pass by your destination at the bus stations/stop because not all buses go there, the places are bus coded. When in an elevator or stairs, always keep left, because the right side is always for the ones who are in a hurry. When crossing the street, wait for the walk signal to light up, you can’t just cross the street just like what we do here. Always bring along hand tissue and wipes although most public toilets in restaurants, stations and malls are very very clean with tissue and all, some foodcourts do not provide tissue. And lastly, do not forget to smile and say please, thank you and excuse me all the time, Singaporeans are known to be very polite.
We had a great, great time in Singapore. The one week that we were there was simply not enough. There are lots to see and to appreciate there. It is not true that you can tour Singapore in one day, those who claim to have toured this city in just one day is simply stupid because who in his right mind would just go around driving in this beautiful city. It takes 4 or more days to actually unearth the beauty, get immersed in the rich culture and be totally captivated by this beautiful Tiger city which has so much to offer. T’was love at first, second and third and fourth and….sight for me.:)

Why God Never Gives…

Sometimes i wonder why God never gives that exact thing that I always asks for and why sometimes it is taking so long for him to respond to my pleas and prayers. I also wonder why sometimes He seems to confuse me more than let me see clearly what to do…I guess
God never gives us the answer to our problem because He would want us to figure out the solution ourselves. He believes in us so much that he gives us different choices on how to live our life. He never imposes himself to us nor dictates to our hearts how to go about our life.
God never gives us the perfect life that we always aim for because He wants to give us so many chances and opportunities instead. He would want us to work on the kind of life that we can be truly proud of. He believes in us so much that he never imposes himself nor dictates to our hearts how to live our life.
God never gives us the perfect health that we always pray for because He would want us to use our will power in choosing the kind of lifestyle that we would adapt and lead. He believes in us so much that He never imposes Himself to us nor dictates to our hearts how to love our life.
God never gives us the perfect partner in life because He would want us to find that person instead in our own perfect time and to grow in love everyday with that person that we choose to spend the rest of our life with. He never imposes himself nor dictates to our hearts whom to love and when to love.
God never gives us everything in a snap of a finger because He loves us so much that He would want us to see clearly the kind of person that we have become and the kind of person that we can be.
God never gives us everything easy because He would want us to realize how great we can be if only allow ourselves to be.
Finally, God never gives us just anything but instead everything we need. He knows every heartaches, struggles and confusions. He is just there all over the place, in everything and in anything, all we have to do is just look closely. He never imposes Himself nor dictates to our hearts to choose Him, follow Him, believe in Him and have complete trust in Him…it is always up to us…
Have a blessed holy week everyone…

Teacher's Notes

You know what I like about teaching? It’s that part where you sometimes get stunned by the unexpected things that students do. Those “wow’ moments. I had a lot of those moments this school year. That is why even though I keep telling my students I wouldn’t miss them and I’m glad to send them off to intermediate, there is still that part of me that is just a bit wistful, a bit sad actually, for I will truly truly miss their craziness.
No matter what they say, there will always be one or two students who will take those soft spots in every teacher’s heart. In my case, there were actually two. One is a toughie who was at the start a bit wary of me. She didn’t trust me right away like the other girls, instead I had to win her trust. She was a bully in the making and the self-appointed class leader. She was not afraid to challenge authority. She was and still is quite a handful. But I discovered that underneath the toughness is a kid who often needs reassurance and a boost in her confidence. The kind of relationship that we had is one that I will never forget. She is my toughie who is actually a softie. The other one is the classic problem kid, she was somebody who had been marked and branded as the hard headed one since first grade. She came to my class a spitfire. She was so damned honest she often leaves her classmates bleeding with her sharp tongue. She always sends someone crying to me often last year. I guess my patience and blind faith in her paid off, because when classes resumed after Christmas break, she was a totally different kid. She is my stone who is actually a jewel.
For the last quarter we were talking about rights, citizen’s roles and government. For my student’s last project, they had to come up with a law based on a problem that they observed happening in school. One of the reminders was not to make the obvious ones like no-littering or anti-noise pollution laws anymore. While I was checking their project, I can’t help but laugh at a few. Here are some…Anti-Gossip Law (no blackmailing, no back stabbing and no teasing, those who will violate this law will clean the bathrooms for several weeks)… Anti-Rumor Law (you should not make someone look bad, you should not believe in rumors, you should not mind rumors, you should not make rumors that no one will enjoy-hahahaha, all rumor makers will take the place of auxiliaries (cleaning ladies) for one week). ..No Showing Off Law (no bringing of fancy stuffs, no bragging, no flipping of hair—where did that come from,hahaha, those who will violate these law will have to donate the fancy stuffs to Gawad Kalinga)…No breaking of Promises Law (this law prohibits students from breaking their promises, students should not ditch, curse or forget their best friends at all times–there’s bitterness somewhere here-hahaha)…Sitting Properly Law (all should obey this law, no crossing of legs, putting feet up, slouching, sitting on top of the table and removing of shoes inside the classroom, those who will violate this law will sit in an electric chair)…Well, we can definitely learn a thing or two from kids.
My students fulfilled some of my wishes this year, that is for me to see clearly the good change I made in them and for them to change something in me for the better…I remember, the other day while I was checking the diary, my attention was caught by a small brass lamp that one of my student was holding, it was a prop for their role play in Language. While I was admiring it, I jokingly said, “Do you think a genie will come out of this thing?” They said ‘Yes miss, try it” and so I made a show of rubbing it and was surprised when suddenly my students laughed uncontrollably and pointed at my side. When I looked up, true enough there standing beside me was a genie… my student Jeannie Shin saying “Miss, your wish is my command” With these kids around you really don’t need a fairy tale genie, they will make your wishes come true if you just believe in them.:)

A Taste Of Heaven Here On Earth

Up in the mountain where the earth meets the sky, I got a taste of heaven…It was pure bliss to sleep in fresh, crisp, white sheets and fluffy pillows. Being awaken from deep slumber at night and being scared shitless by all these nocturnal animals like that tuko paying homage from our screened window. It felt good not worry about getting the sheets mussed or having it changed or putting the bed in order…eating food that you would not even thought about preparing for yourself. Healthy appetizers (veggies in assorted dips and sauces), well thought out main dish and sinful desserts served in porcelain plates and silverware…fine dining and being served upon by charming ladies at each meal. In an ordinary day, I would be eating a hurriedly prepared meal and I wouldn’t think about using different kinds of plates, spoons, forks and knives at each course of a meal since I’d be thinking about the pile of dishes that i had to wash…It felt good being waited upon and not to worrying about a thing…spending the afternoons strolling along trails and enjoying the breeze and the sloping view of the mountain and the city far away….spending mornings doing quiet meditation or solemn prayers. In that place where there is not that much noise you can clearly hear your thoughts and the desires of your heart. It felt good confessing to a priest who got amused with my sins, hearing him laugh out loud while I was recounting with him little anecdotes of my sins. He never made me feel awful for being a sinner like some priests i know but instead he made me feel good in knowing that no sin is ever great not to be forgiven. At that time, I felt like it was really God I was confiding in.
I was reluctant to spend those three days up there in the mountain because for me it was very hard to leave my busy, comfortable life, and I felt guilty being away from my family that long. But with all the countless blessings I have been receiving, how can I not give just three days of my whole life to commune with God. While I was there, I realized that we are tied to our “busy” life as tightly as we would like to be, when we loosen our hold we will realize that the world that we left behind did not stop just because we let go. Sometimes we need to be with our self to find again our balance and our purpose, to reaffirm our beliefs and values, to not get our “self” lost in that busy state called life…When I left for three days, the world did not fall apart, no major catastrophe happened, no major conflict arose like what I feared, instead everything just work out on its own..It is true that everything is ready in the plan of God.

My "Wow" Moments

I need a perk up. It’s been difficult lately. I am a bit shaken by some thoughts of impending changes in our life that might be too soon in coming. I have to remind myself to think happy, positive thoughts. And so I will, by writing down the moments in my life that bring/brought smile on my face and that make/made me feel grateful and happy..
Here are some of those moments when the word WOW aptly describes everything…
the first time I had a heart to heart talk with my dad, who just did the opposite of what i expected would be his first reaction. Instead of getting mad at me and throwing me out of the house he laughed at me and hugged me and promised me that he would take care of everything
the first time my husband and I kissed and made love
the first time I held my daughter in my arms
the first time my daughter walked her first steps and said her first word
the first time I witnessed a butterfly coming out of its chrysalis
the first time I saw all these amazing sea creatures up close especially my favorite sting ray
the first time I sat behind the wheel again and drive after seven years of not driving
everytime my husband hugs me and kiss me and says I love you unexpectedly
everytime my husband go to great lengths just to please me
everytime my husband wakes up at an ungodly hour without complaints just to get me water or to accompany me or my daughter in the bathroom to pee
eveytime one of my close friend says exactly the right words that i need to hear or words that will soothe me and make me feel alright
everytime I receive answered prayers
everytime I experience deja’ vu
everytime I wake up without the help of my handy alarm clock at exactly the time that I am supposed to wake up
everytime I meet twins and the thought that I have nephews who are twins also
everytime I notice some semblance of myself or my husband in my daughter
everytime I find underneath drawers or cabinets things I have long forgotten already
everytime I gaze at our pictures in our photo albums and seeing how much we’ve grown and changed over the years
everytime I receive unexpected windfalls especially when we need it most
my bridal march during my wedding day with my daddy sniffling loudly at the background
those times before when my dad tirelessly played with my daughter and turned putty in her hands when he was still alive–he was after all a Police Colonel..:)
that time when my dad survived despite being in critical condition in the hospital for a month and how he was able to live another full month where he made sure to leave us many a happy memories that are still vivid in my mind
the sight of our flowers blooming everyday in our garden patch thus affirming my husband’s long standing belief that he has a green thumb
witnessing a garbage dumpsite successfully becoming a Gawad Kalinga community and being part of it all
being told by a student that I am the best teacher in the whole world
receiving a spontaneous hug from a student who is not part of my class but who just feels like giving me one
being told by this kid all the time that I look like 20 rather than my age 30 not so much because I really
look like it I’m sure, but because she just wants to go out of her way to make me feel good about myself and to see me smile
not experiencing any serious accident, injuries and illness for the past 30 years
staying married to the same guy for the past 8 years and still feeling blissfully happy with it despite of some minor problems that happen once in awhile
thinking about how everything always turns out well and how everything in my life just feels like a thousand puzzle pieces fitting perfectly together right from the start
the thought that whatever will happen, it has been planned and carefully thought out by that Mighty Hand…and the feeling right now that amidst all the confusions and uncertainties I feel at peace knowing that He will always bless me and my family and will always make sure to give me lots of things that will make feel..Wow..