My General New Year's Resolution

12:19 AM Wednesday, December 31, 2008

... is to be productive.

That means, I have to manage a routine. And stick to it.

One of my bigger personal goals is to diet and exercise. By diet, I mean, to stop the binges and eat more fruits and veggies and stick to white meat. I can never do reduced portions but I know I can do the healthier options thingie.

And aside from wanting to get preggy again, I really hope to look good in swimsuits for the coming summer season. So exercise I must.

Being productive means being healthy. Being productive also means saving money. So diet and exercise, I commit to thee.

And who knows, I may just be brave enough to earn more money.

Happy Kind of Sad Christmas

8:10 PM Saturday, December 27, 2008

First of all, Mom being alone in the US and all of us being here... that's sad. But still, the fact that my previous and my present families are all alive (almost) and well can't help but make me happy.

And then Dad had this very unwelcome idea of ending a Christmas tradition we've established with our cousins in Lipa. He opted to just come to Manila for Noche Buena instead of having us Manila-based folks going to Lipa. So after seven years of spending Noche Buena with them and watching them open gifts and line up for loot bags, we had to celebrate it again here and do all the cooking ourselves. See, it was always potluck in Lipa.

Still, cooking up the Noche Buena feast brought back memories of old Christmases when we'd all wake up on December 24 to my Mom's cooking. She starts on them very early so that after the Mass, we'd just reheat stuff or fry/cook what's already marinated.

And in the end, we all pitched in.

I mostly drank hot cocoa. My brother ate half the ham in one go, as usual.

All in all, I am very grateful for this Christmas. And really grateful for my family.

Why Cory Annoys Me

4:36 PM Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Inferno, I didn't expect much from Cory's administration because I believed her government had to clean up after Marcos' regime. Years of corruption brought by Marcos couldn't be undone in half a decade.

I considered her time a transitory one.

But I hadn't expected Filipinos to have woken up from the Marcos nightmare only to fall asleep again. But that's our fault and I digress.

But even when I say that I didn't expect much from Cory, i'd say I was also disappointed that she failed as a WOMAN president. All she ever did was pray but she never really furthered the causes I expected would be dear to her as a woman, like women's issues and education and health care.

Then, she continued meddling with other governments while still not championing a cause I care for. Where was she when farmers went on hunger strike on that matter of Hacienda Luisita?

And my gosh, I really expected her to at least rally her supporters to make Kris stop her rampaging days before.

And then, she helped oust Erap. And now, she says that was a mistake.

Sure, it may be big of her to admit that she's a person able to admit to unsound judgment but still, all she's making me feel is dismay. Dismay for the Filipinos who rallied behind her before. Dismay that all she ever was was a symbol, but not a hero. That all her husband stood for remained a dream with her.

She is prayerful... but a woman of integrity and conviction? Definitely not. So I wish she'd just retire (and be quiet) because only those with integrity should be giving the Filipino people hope.

Labor of Love Indeed

7:10 PM Tuesday, December 23, 2008

For siblings with families, I digiscrapped pictures and put them in frames I bought from Divi. For my MIL, I mounted seven pics in a multiframe and managed to cut my finger (so the frame, glass, etc were all blessed by my blood) in the process. I also got traumatized... never again shall I deal with a multiple-pic frame. Hehe.

Anyway, allow me to share with you what I digiscrapped for my SIL and brother. My cousin made the unfortunate comment that it was kinda creepy, but I hope my brother won't think so. I hope, they have somehow made peace with their loss and are fully hopeful that their second son won't end up like his older brother.

Quickpage by DCAST Autumncard

Tinkering With the Template

2:58 PM Saturday, December 20, 2008

So if you dropped by and want to let your presence felt, could you use the chat box instead since I have to figure out again how to use the Haloscan commenting system with beta blogger?

Hopefully, i'd also be a better blogger next year.

Oh... and I'd also be pruning my links because some of them do not blog anymore. Have a great weekend!

Twilight Watched

6:55 PM Friday, December 19, 2008

I actually liked the Twilight movie. Not sure how much the hype it's been generating has affected that, but I did like it. It is kinda weird (perverted, says hubs) that Bella was the way she was but since I was a teenage girl once, I can relate with all the selfishness and passion.

Not sure if I am ready to read the book though. I will admit I was prejudiced against it a little because I loved Anne Rice's vampire books. But a friend did say that I should think of Twilight as a romance series, not a vampire series.

Oh and yeah, hubs didn't like the book as well.

I am looking forward to Rob Pattinson's Little Ashes (?) movie... hoping he's a really good actor.

Too Busy for HP

2:03 PM Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Yup. I got too busy for Harry Potter that I still haven't gotten myself a copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard. And to think twas released last 04 December!!!


Need to wait for hubs' bonus first before I can buy one though. And to recover from my allergic rhinitis.


And funnily enough, I got too busy to also submit photos for the "Boobs for a Cause" thingie... submissions are now closed. Hehe.

How Sad

5:39 PM Friday, December 05, 2008

My high school batch is holding a reunion this coming January for our 15th year anniversary out of high school. And it depresses me not to have anyone to go to the reunion with.

I mean, sure, I can rake hubs with me... but i'd also rather have some high school friend to meet and hang out there. The last reunion I attended (with hubs), I felt like a fly on the wall while watching all those old faces in their old cliques.

My best friend is somewhere in the Middle East. And the other girls in our clique of four, I don't have contact with anymore. And actually, our clique hasn't met and bonded ever since we graduated from high school.

And my other close classmates in fourth year... they haven't enlisted to come to the reunion this time (I hung out with them at the first reunion, because my BFF did not show up).

Anyway, isn't this sad? I wasn't a wallflower in high school. I had friends. I was not super popular but I was at least known. But having no one to go to the reunion with makes me feel like I didn't have much of a high school life.

Sure, there are familiar names that I could chit chat with, but there'd still be no one to sit with. Sniff, sniff.

And my high school crushie is coming!!! Waaaaaaahhhh........

Good Luck, Sis

9:53 PM Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I'm really praying that you'll pass the Nursing Board this weekend sis... i've seen you work hard. I also can't help but really want this for you because your future depends on it. I want you to have a good life. I want you to be reaping nice rewards.

Most of all, I want our parents to have more faith that they have indeed provided well for us and need not worry about our future anymore. So they can enjoy the rest of their present... and what remains of their health and their youth.

I love you. We all do. Just do your best... and God will do the rest.

The Gross Food Trips

12:39 AM Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I just realized, after pouring fish sinigang broth on my rice and then topping the lot with sotanghon from ginisang sardinas that I am being weird again. Especially since my hubby gave a momentary disgusted look at my plate.

Is this PMS? Or am I pregnant again?

I had six choco chip cookies for dessert... and a bag of popcorn after. Eeek!

Not Torn Between Two Loves

12:45 AM Saturday, November 15, 2008

What does a Filipino do when confronted by leftovers from lunch (sinigang with a slightly spicy broth and choice pork parts) and the viand for the evening (chicken adobo, marinated in sukang paombong)?

Not get torn between the two, I hope.

Piping hot rice with lots of the sinigang broth tastes all the more delicious when spiced up by the adobo sauce, I tell you. :)

Yeah... I am one of those who can pile almost everything together in my plate and enjoy it. I sometimes find myself even making spaghetti a viand with my rice, when they're heaped together onto my plate. And although I don't top champorado over a lunch of paksiw na isda, I have no problems eating it as dessert immediately after a main meal (no matter what the viand was).



Or I just love Pinoy food that much. :)

Hubs wasn't sure it was a good idea, since it might bring up memories of Py. But the decision to have our son's hair shaved was more a parenting tradition that we've always liked. Besides, silently, i'd rather we have our son's head shaved because we think it's cool, and not because his hair is falling off from chemo.

He does sometimes remind me of Py, especially when he has his back turned to us. Even my sister sometimes catches herself pausing, getting confused. And there's that hint of a resemblance somewhere too, when light catches my son's nose bridge. But other than that, it's really great that he looks like me and has his dad's full lips (Py had his father's thin lips).

But oh, the memories.

And I can't help feeling guilty somewhat... unsure how my brother is feeling. SIL is great with it, thankfully. But then again, hers is a mother's heart.

And well, since mine is a mother's heart too, I can't help but also think how dashingly handsome my Baby Boy Ama is :D He looks like a tambay sa kanto. Hehe.

My Charmed Marathon

11:57 AM Thursday, November 06, 2008

I'm currently on Season 5 now, where Piper is pregnant and Phoebe is not in love with Cole anymore and Paige has resigned from work to be a full-time witch and part-time whitelighter.

Gosh, I miss Prue.

And Paige looks so much like Michael Jackson, I can't help but wonder how I could have thought her pretty/beautiful.

It's Not That I Don't Care

3:08 AM Monday, November 03, 2008

It's just really that I am actually busy living my life to blog much. There are a hundred things I do want to write about though, but they end up being forgotten as more and more things happen everyday.

Who knew October could be such an eventful month?

And my November weekends are also already fully-booked now. The agenda is always family time and bonding. I'm backlogged in posts, mails and picture uploads. Yikes.

December cannot help but also be a busy month too, what with too many happenings already competing for the first week slot in my calendar. Sigh.

Not really a complaint here, though. I hope others are enjoying their loved ones as much!

For Mistresses and Wanna-Be's

1:39 AM Monday, October 27, 2008

No, am not going to pick fights or pass judgment really (at least, I hope not).

But just in case you're forgetting...

My SIL, in a DVD marathon, had us watch John Lloyd and Sarah Geronimo's flick (A Very Special Love? not sure of the title). Anyway, John Lloyd's character had a line that went something like this:

"Hindi mo alam kung ano ang pakiramdam kapag tinitingnan ka ng mga kapatid mo at ang tanging nakikita lang nila ay ang kasalanan ng nanay mo sa nanay nila."

(You don't know how it feels to have your siblings look at you and only see your mother's sin against their mother)

It may be a stupid or too ideal a plea... but I really hope that men and women alike who would choose to play second fiddle (regardless of how loveless the marriage is supposed to be) and men and women alike who would choose to betray their spouses/vows would also make sure the affair won't result in a child. Or children. Ever.

We've heard of parents wanting half-siblings to play nice and I honestly want to wring their necks for it. And I can't imagine why someone would purposely put any child of his in a position where he'd have to forever defend and fight for his name and legacy (material or otherwise) when it wasn't even his betrayal that brought him about.

These things get to me. I really hate it that other parents don't give their kids a better start on the road to happiness and love.

Destiny KTV

2:20 PM Saturday, October 18, 2008

Destiny KTV (channel 5 for us) can't help but give me the creeps sometimes. It doesn't stop me from going there though, because it helps with lulling my son to sleep. But I can't help but also get absorbed by all the 'ads' being placed there.

I called my husband's attention to it... lots of men sending their topless pics and giving away their cell number while specifically requesting for "cute, bi males". Some girls specifically request for men with cars. All advertise that they're cute, pretty, good-looking (and although i've seen some cute-looking folks there, I still highly doubt it that they're all really as cute as they think, or sell, themselves to be). Some men would say, "single women only, single mothers welcome". Some will determine an age bracket, or a location. Most demand a nasl (name, age, sex, location) and a picture via MMS. Some say they won't reply if no FS is provided (my dear sister told me that stands for friendster, sheesh).

I still haven't quite worked out what 'bottom' or 'top' is, if it's limited to same-sex relationships and if it implies a butch-femme type of role.

When I told hubs that one can see fetishes there too, like men asking for chubby girls, he was a little jaded. He reckons its only because these guys know that a chubby girl would be insecure and would be more eager to please. He said the same thing about those entertaining single moms.

Which brings me to those looking for "open-minded" girls... (men used to private message me before asking me if I was one, and i'd always ask them to qualify the term because based on my experience, men have generally assumed open-minded to mean into-casual-sex).

What's creepy, then?

Well, I just can't help but think that things will only get worse in time... socially, sexually. Younger and younger (and more) people will be on the net looking for quick and 'open' relationships. Didn't like this one who texted you? Move on to the next one. This one didn't reply fast enough? Move on to the next one. His car is an older model? Move on to the next one.

Not only are kids growing up bored and restless, they are also growing up warped.

And I know I may sound like a hypocrite, having 'met' my husband from chat... but the thing is, I never sought to hook up with anyone from the net. And our courtship lasted for years.

But yeah, I guess, who knows... these people could find a true gem amidst all these bullsh!t.

Belated Birthday Pics

3:05 PM Thursday, October 16, 2008

my Alex Franco cake (chocolate and walnut caramel with
chocolate mousse and frozen mango fillings)

shrimps and crabs in sweet chili sauce at Aling Tonya's
(Seaside Macapagal)

family after bingeing on seafood

What Happened to the Amazing Race?

9:59 AM Wednesday, October 15, 2008

It's Season 13 already of the Amazing Race and I don't know but it seems lame and boring all of a sudden. The first episode was absolutely blah and they didn't seem to have much in the way of challenges then.

And it sucks that the only team I really like, Mark and Bill's, have been eliminated.

What sucks even more is that Bill reminds me of someone (I just remembered who) and evokes these crushie feelings from moi. Yikes.

Boobs for a Cause

12:04 PM Monday, October 06, 2008

JMom gave me the heads up on this one...

There's a boobie-thon going on where women (and men) are encouraged to send pictures of their breasts to be posted in their site. Nude ones are put in a pay-per-donate gallery. Of course, you can just donate money to the cause.

This benefits breast cancer research. So get creative and start flashing for a good cause! :)

I am not biased at all when I say that my son can be charming. He is and he knows it. So it's not just because my parents love their grandson so much, he also gives them a lot of reasons to really find him cute.

And for the moment, my heart is rejoicing at those moments that my son terrorizes my Mom (mostly because he's so LIKOT and she's so NERBYOS) and he demands my father's attention. And I guess it's partly because he senses we're comfy with these new people and also because he can't help but sense they're family that he's adjusted to them in a heartbeat. My son even insists on being carried by my Dad (after which he'd start pointing to where he wants Grandpa to bring him, which is mostly outside) and allows both to feed him. He's that comfy with them.

And I see my parents' delight in him... their own wonderment at how fast he progresses. I've even told the others not to corect my Dad anymore because he thinks he taught my son the "hala/no" sign.

Its moments like these that I dreamed of before... that I long for when they're away. I'm really glad they're both making an effort now to hang around and enjoy their grandkids. I'm really happy that, in the meantime, my parents and my child are making each other happy.

Somehow, there is healing and forgiveness when different generations collide and bond. And a renewed sense of family.

And now, I love them all the more.

My Birthday... Almost

2:10 AM Thursday, October 02, 2008

Just some 22 hours away and i'll be 31.

Husband has complained somewhat that I haven't named what I want for a birthday gift yet. But that's the thing. Like what I told a friend earlier, either I am that happy/content where I am right now or i've just gotten less materialistic and superficial. Because I really couldn't ask for more.

I mean... I want savings, but that's not something you ask for, that's something for you to do (master self-control over spending and modify comfort levels).

And always, I wouldn't mind travelling someplace new.

And sure, there are newer, smaller, faster laptops out there that could probably make me clap my hands... but my desktop and secondhand-laptop already delivers. And even hand-me-down external hard drives from the hubs are working just fine and feeding my neurotic need to back-up my files.

And yes, I wouldn't say NO to new lenses for my DSLR... but i've been told that the kit lens is all I really need once i've mastered the features of my DSLR.

Well, I wouldn't say NO to a lot of things... but I don't miss them. I am not living without. In fact, I am feeling more than grateful for the much that I do have. And not just materially...

I'm turning 31, which is really just a number.

I am happy, which is really something not everybody can say and mean it.

I'm the Queen of the world, then :)

Heaven Help Me

6:56 PM Monday, September 29, 2008

My parents being here... not good. Not good for me. Especially my Mom.

And I really don't want to turn this blog of mine into a telenovela of every little enabling thing that my mother does for my brother.



An Extra Feast

9:41 PM Sunday, September 28, 2008

Leave it to a Catholic Priest to come up with yet another reason for a feast.

The Parish Priest in our barrio in Lipa instituted a new tadition three years ago. Aside from the parish feast (which we celebrate every 2nd day of January), he assigned a saint to each barrio whose feast day should be celebrated. We got San Lorenzo Ruiz and today is his feast day.

My cousin was the Hermano for this year... and he solicited from my aunts and uncles abroad to fund the lunch that he (our family) is going to host for the barrio.

Sure, there was a Mass before lunch... but I ask you, could an extra feast really bring back the people into the Christian way? Heck... it actually gave people another reason to act non-Christian because men binged on booze and people showed up for food they didn't work for.

Red Flag Special

3:22 AM Friday, September 26, 2008

You would think that because all/most women menstruate and go through all that PMS sh!t that they can live in the same house or be in the same group and be able to tolerate each other's menstruation-related tempers.

So yeah, hail to the men who put up with us.

Right now, my cousin is in a bad mood because she has her period. And she's entering menopause. I, on the other hand, have bad PMS cravings and crabbiness. Talk about waking up on the wrong side of the bed. Poor son, I can't help but be short on him too.

I spent the whole day on the verge of flying in a rage. I was just that restlessly mad. Ugh. Hormones. I only calmed down after half a block of chocolate. Tsk. Sugar aggravates PMS, I know, but twas the only thing that worked!

I used to have PMS cravings. I used to have menstruation-related irritation and b!tchiness. But never this bad. This is soooo weird. Plus, i'm delayed again but am pretty sure am not pregnant. The thought that my cycle likes to skip a month each time just drives me nuts because the PMS is just worse.

Sorry. Rant.

But somebody deliver me from this evil!

Which TV Series Do You Miss?

8:44 AM Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I am loving the second season of Gossip Girl, and looking forward to Heroes (Villains), Grey's Anatomy and The Amazing Race.

But I see some TV series tag happening in blogs about old TV series that you wouldn't mind coming back. Well, here's a list of my former guilty pleasures.

Beverly Hills 90210
It's been revived but reviewers only really liked that Brenda Walsh was back. Other than that, it supposedly stinks, and its starlets are all verging on anorexic while the guys all seem too pretty to just be metrosexuals. Spoiler alert though, Dylan had a one-night thingie with Kelly which resulted in he being a single Mom.

The first three or four seasons, at least. Okay, I have a thing for Shannen Doherty, so sue me.

The Nanny
But there's a marathon of old episodes going on in Disney Channel (I think) every Sunday night. Anyway, love Fran Fine's atrocious (but sexy) outfits, her long-suffering and equally-nasal Jewish Mom, and the tension between Cece (?) and Niels.

Touched by an Angel
Loved how they tackled modern-day issues in a spiritual way, like teenage pregnancy and surrogacy. Sure, it was very spiritual but I loved Monica and Tess!!!

J.J. Starbuck
This is another inspirational one... but it was no-nonsense in its charm.

Just the 10 of Us
I hope I got the title right... just love the family dynamics!

Married... with Children
Who here didn't love the Bundys?

3rd Rock from the Sun
Ugh... I was in love with French Stewart fo a while.

Growing Pains
My personal fave episodes are what I call Swept Away episodes, when Kirk's character fell in love with this Hawaiian girl and always, the theme song played is Christopher Cross' Swept Away... hehe

Awww... I miss that series. I don't like the new cartoon versions, not even the movie versions. X-men in the early 90s had me in love with Gambit and Beast (and okay, Wolverine).

Ally McBeal
If only for that quirky guy who remote flushes the toilets... and that arrogant guy whose fetish are wattles (?) and loose skin.

I still see a lot of Friends, Seinfeld, and Will & Grace. I also still see a lot of Mr. Bean. I don't laugh anymore over the Three Stooges. And I think Living Dolls was stopped for a reason.

Back when I was still working, computer and printer supplies were sometimes an issue. Due to bureaucracy, red tape and corruption (are those one and the same?), it sometimes takes months for our Procurement Office to get hold of cartridges for the printers they have issued to us. What's more, they kept purchasing colored inkjet printers which usually do not just require two different cartridges (black and colored) but four individual ones (black, cyan, magenta and yellow). And of course, printer manufacturers made sure some printer models would refuse to work if just one of the cartridges was running low on ink.

We also couldn't use generic ink on those printers because that would mean losing the warranty the printers came with.

And also because of the bureacracy, it takes ages before procurement proposals are reviewed and approved and actually purchased, so we'd also sometimes end up with outdated models where it will take twice as long to find compatible inks.

And I have not discussed repairs/maintenance hassles yet. But I hope you appreciate how getting our hands on office supplies can be a challenge sometimes. I don't think our Procurement Office even had an office supplies cross reference system to utilize.

So it would really have been cool if there was a local counterpart to's printer supplies cross reference system, which not only generates information as to where computers, printers, copiers and digital cameras even are available, it also offers price comparisons too.

What's more, it's even now offering a widget which bloggers can use to give their readers access to the price comparisons. Earning a commission from any Amazon sale is also a great bonus. This is particularly nifty since a lot of bloggers and blog readers have started home businesses which could benefit dearly from these office supplies. Better, faster printers for your printing business? The widget is sure to land you some great buys!

So maybe I will try that widget out (hopefully it will work with my classic template because not all widgets do).

We Used to be Mountaineers

1:29 PM Monday, September 22, 2008

Amazing how before, the only heavy things we caried were our backpacks, and we could put those down without being cried to and feeling guilty.

Amazing that we could eat with dirty hands and off each other's water bottles but would probably shriek if we see our kids doing the same.

Amazing that we used to be more concerned of rain than the cold, and we didn't bother about clean beddings and shirts, and mosquitoes didn't concern us more than leeches would. But now, we're all OC in our own way. And all missing the mountains that we used to commune with all those time years ago.

We used to be mountaineers. We're hoping we could be again someday soon. But breastfeeding and being stay/work-from-home Moms (without help) isn't exactly ideal for leaving a child behind (or in Jah's case, two kids and one on the way), no matter how many bottles of pumped milk you store.

I guess our mountains conquered is all figuratively for the meantime.

Parents are Coming

10:02 PM Sunday, September 21, 2008

... hopefully, our reunion will be a better one than all the rest before. This means, however, we wouldn't be complete again this Christmas since my Mom has to go back in a month's time.

I hope my parents will spend a lot of time with their grandkids. I'm not really expecting them to take my son off my hands for extended periods of time but it really saddens me that my son is growing up not enjoying his grandparents as much.

On a maddeningly annoying note, my uncle has been calling everyone already asking if my Mom is already here. It would have been sweet if he was doing it because he couldn't wait to see my Mom, but we all know it's because he's expecting to 'borrow' money again from her.

So I guess the P20k my Mom already gave him to use as capital didn't yield any returns.

Families... sigh.

Taking Home Food

8:58 PM Friday, September 19, 2008

JMom's post brought to mind my amazing boss and made me wonder if i'd have to deal with some again for my son's upcoming birthday.

See, at my son's baptism, I was surprised to see people (from my side of the family) who were already packing food from the buffet. I was aghast, because the guests were still eating and nobody had approached me to ask for permission. Of course, I was embarrassed, thinking of my husband's share of the guests and what they'd say.

Well, it wasn't that bad really, because the guests were already helping themselves to second and third helpings... but still, i'd rather I was approached first. Turned out, my SIL's family did it first, and when my cousin saw it, she told her siblings to also get their own.


But I guess, when you have relations that aren't that well-off, you cannot really expect the same social graces from them. ButI do know who's in need and I always make it a point to give to them first when there are things left to give. And you know, it also sometimes suck... you pay using your hard-earned money to throw a party and you don't even get to bring home the leftovers for supper. Again, that's kinda forgivable if only the guests will be considerate... and not act as if we owe it to them to send them off with loot. I mean, if it's wrong to throw a party and expect gifts, surely it's also wrong to attend a party and expect extra food and giveaways?


I Owe Bloghops Again

5:46 AM Thursday, September 18, 2008

And i'm sorry for owing them. But I will return your visit... hopefully, someday soon.

Heaven Help Me with My Sis

5:55 PM Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Like what I told her, I get that she wants to enjoy hanging out with her friends. I've been where she is right now and I get the high gimmicks can give you.

But since she's reviewing for the Nursing Board, after a year of graduating and missing two Board Exams already, and not ever really practicing any of what she learned in school during that time, I really expect her to focus.

And since she's seen firsthand how my parents struggle abroad to build a life for her there, and support my brother here, I really expected more consideration for them from her.


And yes, I will admit that I am terribly annoyed and concerned after learning that her current BF drives a motorcyle. Helmet or not, I think those things shouldn't be allowed in major roads.

photohunt: wild

5:21 PM Saturday, September 13, 2008

Calauit Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary is about three hours of rough roads from Coron (and a 5-30 minute boat ride, depending on where you started and what your boat is like).

Personally, going there isn't worth the long hours on bumpy road, mainly because the sanctuary is not really that maintained anymore. Plus, the locals have been hunting the deer running wild and free for their meat. But of course, something has to be said about seeing all these animals we usually just see in zoos roaming free, with expanses of land to themselves, to go about and graze as they please.

The sanctuary has a long way to go to catch up with other similar ones (like ones in Africa, ustralia dn some parts of Asia), which is too bad really because it is such a huge, rich island where animals are sure to thrive.

I'm Done

1:53 PM Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Around two weeks or so ago, I arranged babysitting for my son to meet up with old gimmick friends from myg, mtc and gni (all message boards). I was excited about it, eager to see old faces and see who got fat and all...

I was already at Starbucks in Metro Walk at 5:00 PM. Talk about being an eager beaver! But people were late in arriving and after sitting there for some two hours, I was already too bored for words and called it a night.

Mind you, I think i'd always love dancing... and would welcome any chance to go. I miss it. But even if I don't ever get to do it again, I know I really wouldn't mind either.

And the senseless chatter of who banged whom and who hooked up with whome and who hasn't gotten over yet with whom... all tiresome and old. I mean, i've talked that talk for years already before, and here are old faces still talking the same sh!t this day, it's crazy sad. I couldn't help thinking... when will they grow up? When will they stop searching for meaning and actually create it instead?

Twas a total waste of make-up and thong, for sure! Good thing I opted not to flash some cleavage that day too.

Oh, but I still got to bond with some old friends over my fave cream chip drink. They at least moved on and it was actually nice catching up with those two.


One thing that was also nice that time was being able to catch guys' eyes. Sure, I can't compete with the pretty, young things in their short skirts and dresses anymore... but it sure is nice to validate that, if I only exert some effort, I still manage a presence :)

Super Awww Moment

11:48 AM Sunday, September 07, 2008

I cannot explain why this video brought tears to my eyes. Maybe because I know Trig has Down's syndrome and to see him cared for so lovingly by his sister just made me so happy for him, and so touched by her innocent caring.

And I really doubt it's a gimmick of Sarah Palin's camp. Sure, Lindsay Lohan was right to point that Sarah should stick to her politics instead of distracting people with her teenage daughter's pregnancy, but I really doubt anyone thought this gimmick up.

Way to go Piper... may you really grow up with much heart.

U.S. Politics, Thinking Aloud

2:18 AM Saturday, September 06, 2008

Note to possible readers... I have not really done research on these people's politics. All these are just impressions.


I was thrilled for the U.S. and full of wonder on whether the Democrats just might give the U.S. either its first Lady President or its first Black President. Either way, it would have been a phenomenal milestone reached in its history. The Democrats chose the Black guy (which brought to mind a discussion before on social hierarchy, how sex/gender always comes first, then race, then wealth/power... which makes the black, poor woman the least woeful one to be). Am sure they have their reasons.

Anyway, Obama comes across as someone fresh and spunky. I watched his debate before with Hilary and he was just cool and collected. I guess it didn't help Hilary that she too passionate and appeared arrogant, aggressive and opinionated.

And then I read an e-mail saying Obama is a liar and discussed point by point just how, the biggest contention of which is that he's not exactly the discriminated, underprivileged Black he was trying to project... because if ever he does get elected, he'd actually be America's first Moslem President. He was more Moslem than Black, that was what made him different.

But I guess, his skin tone will always be a rallying point for all the migrants in the US. And by golly, the celebs have sure come together for him. I can't even name one who supports McCain and yet I can name several supporting Obama (George Clooney, Rosie O' Donnell who even bashed Angelina Jolie for not yet supporting Obama, Kate Walsh, Jessica Alba, Oprah... I can go on and on).

But it is this popularity that has me concerned now. It seems he actually lacks leadership experience (Republican running VP Sarah Palin is reported to have more experience, and she's from Alaska). I mean, the only things i've ever heard thrown McCain's way is his age and maybe the conservative stance of the Republicans. And then I see Obama promising so much so soon, it's just become too much of a popularity game instead.

I'm concerned because a lot of economies depend on the US'... ours included.

Just A Little Envious

12:53 AM Thursday, September 04, 2008

A good friend's father passed away. And she wrote a really beautiful entry about him. And I cannot help but be envious... not that her father is dead (because I love my Dad enough to be happy he's still alive) but that her father was the way he was, and that she is the daughter she is.

I am racking my brains right now for a memory of my Dad surprising me with something nice. Not that he wasn't thoughtful... both my parents were, in their own way. But I think the fact that my Dad chooses to 'keep things from us' in pursuit of feeding his ego with false praises by users and abusers... that has really estranged him from me.

And it's really traumatic to have someone you've put on a pedestal all your life be disclosed as not just far from perfect, but sometimes even downright mean. And I never will get why, although he never had affairs, he'd also choose to betray my Mother's trust and allow people to think otherwise. Where is the loyalty in that, if her honor wasn't something you protected?

I know I am being very cruel and heartless and selective. But I have really yet to accept that my father never loved my mother as I expect a husband should love his wife. Therein lies my misery. It's why I think he's failed me as a father.

Hopefully, we still have time to be a better father and daughter to each other.

Do You Think of Your Eulogy?

3:18 AM Wednesday, September 03, 2008

How it might go... how you want it to go?

Can you even confidently say who will come running to grieve with your family when you finally snuff it? Who'd be holding your hand in your death bed?

Do your siblings love you enough? Do your kids? Does your spouse? What about your friends?

It's scary but I just realized that I have not commanded that degree of love and respect yet. I know I have friends and I know my family loves me, but I am far from the person I want to be.

And no, it's not that I want to be nice and all just so people will go to my funeral. But isn't it the truest testament of how well you've lived, when people are actually sorry to see you go... instead of breathing a sigh of relief?

I Don't Have To Do Anything

10:19 PM Wednesday, August 27, 2008

... but i'm itching to at least text/talk to my SIL or my brother.

My leaves-much-to-be-desired brother has moved back in my parents' home with his family. And maybe because they don't have a maid/yaya now, or he got spoiled when they were living with his in-laws, but all he ever really does is camp on the sofa all day and night, watching TV and downloading mp3s.

He even went on leave just to watch the Olympic games (mostly the swimming events).

It's very irritating to see him stuck on the sofa calling his wife to fetch him water, juice, the remote, etc. I mean, the house is small... it wouldn't cost him five steps to get to the fridge.

Meanwhile, my SIL attends to their baby and juggles the laundry/other chores when the baby's sleeping. And if ever my nephew wakes up crying while his Mom is doing something, my awful brother would be heard calling her to attend to the baby... who's sleeping beside him.

One time, I couldn't help myself, I did tell my brother to hang their clothes to dry instead, so his wife can nurse/pacify their baby.

But really... my brother is just so shamelessly... macho.

And now it turns out, when my SIL doesn't respond asap, my brother has taken to verbal threats, as in, "Sampalin kita dyan eh" or something to that effect. Even in the presence of SIL's family.


Heaven knows i've prayed many times for my brother to become a better man. Heaven knows i've appealed to Pyro's spirit that he guide his Dad to be a better man. I've come short of literally asking God to strike my brother with a lightning bolt so many times...

Then again, i've warned my SIL. I've told her several times already that my brother isn't going to change especially since she lets him walk all over her... that she's just destined for a lot of misery with him. But she wanted him, love him, and enables him to be this way. No self-respect to her name, that one.

So what are we to do? The dynamic is between them, after all, so we really shouldn't concern ourselves with how they want to float their boat. But it's just so embarassing to be siblings with him, and my sister sees the way he treats our SIL, and our SIL sees how royally and lovingly my husband attends to me and our son, and my nephew is going to grow up watching his father treating his mother like his slave.

And for all my Dad's imperfections, he never treated my Mom like that.


I felt better after ranting early this morning. But anyway, I just wondered if, psychologically, something in our family dynamics made my brother and I resistant to applying ourselves.

And yes, it fills me with disgust to grant that I may just be the same as my brother...

Heaven help me, I just hope I will be a better parent, to happier, more productive kids...

Warning: Major Rant Ahead

I've often felt... and silently believed, that I am an innately angry person. Of course, if I consider what i've learned in my college years about a person's psychology, I should maybe also say that something in my childhood caused this personality trait. But I just really believe I was born angry.

And I don't really want to debate over the possibility and rationality of that statement. And yes, I am channeling an Ally McBeal line about Ally being terminally lonely. You know, how some people just seem to be born sad? I was born angry.

(I think Sigmund just rolled over in his grave to mumble "birth trauma", hehe)


I am consumed with anger right now, thus the lack of sleep yet again. Angry about plans not pushing through, about circumstances, about things I can't control, etc. But mostly i'm angry over the things I can control but have chosen not to. I'm angry at myself for being the one sabotaging my chances at more/greater happiness.

Case in point, not studying at all.

Another case in point, filling myself with food because I was feeling empty.

Not sleeping right.

Not managing my time well.

Not doing the things I ought to do.

And yes, blogging about these things. I'm all bark and no bite.

I come up with dreams and schemes and lists and plans... but do not have the backbone to see them through. Sometimes, I really wonder if am just a sloth like that, you know, too lazy to make things happen for myself... or if, despite the bravado, i'm really just an insecure girl, sitting in front of a computer, pretending to matter.


I have a life. Am I living it?

And why, oh why, do I still have to ask?


You would think that awareness of one's self-sabotage would already set one free. Sigh. I'm just thankful that am not wallowing in unrequited love and drugs and crimes, but still, i'm feeling just as wasted as them. As senseless.


Is this still a really bad PMS talking? Is this a year and eight months' worth of hormones raging that's making me crazy with sadness and madness right now?

A friend just bounced back from a quarter-life crisis. Am I too impressionable that I am in one too? Or just still really adjusting to the life changes?

Oh, God... I want to ask for a reprieve, for some quiet for my restless soul, but how can I ask for more rest when I haven't moved at all? How dare I ask for liberation when I alone chained myself up?

And yet.. and yet... looking within isn't helping... at least, not just yet.


7:41 PM Thursday, August 21, 2008

McDonald's caramel sundae already costs P35. Thirty-friggin-five pesos!


It's times like these that I really feel inflation biting my a$$. Good thing the attendant put two dollops of caramel sauce on my sundae... the shock from the price increase became tolerable somehow.

be still, my wander-lusting feet

1:47 AM Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I sometimes can't help it.

I get these promos from airlines and shipping lines for promo fares... and there's always that momentary feeling of bitterness over not being able to take advantage of them.


It's almost two years since my last plane ride (that was when we went to Palawan). And it's not that I haven't been anywhere this year (been to North mostly, with Bataan, Pampanga and Baguio), but somehow it still doesn't feel the same.


I guess I got so used to travelling yearly, even if only because of work, and got so used to having a change of scenery. Ever since last year, i've seen sceneries from the TV mostly (I think that was why, for a while, I was hooked on Discovery Travel and Living and Living Asia channels). I was feeling so deprived.

I still feel deprived. And it doesn't matter that I know I am not deprived, I still just feel it. But this is one of the downsides of a one-income family and becoming a Mom. There just isn't that much disposable income anymore, and not enough time.


I just hope I get that body scrub i've been longing for soon. Then again, since I haven't been working my a$$ off in my blogging sideline and studies, I shouldn't really be feeling sorry for myself for not having rewards. There is that matter of deserving, after all.



Wonder when this PMS funk will go away. Not only is my appetite monstrous, i'm just generally sad, whatever I do.


I've Always Been In Love With Her

1:33 AM Tuesday, August 19, 2008

... though lately, she's looking like a ghost.

But still, Madonna is 50 years old and all kinds of wonderful still. I love the fact that her music changed over the years and matured with her.

LIKE A VIRGIN is a classic! MATERIAL GIRL too! And heaven help me, I know all the lyrics of BORDERLINE. And when I was in college, I used to cry and emote myself to sleep to the whole BEDTIME STORIES album (because then, I was in love with a jerk and dedicated TAKE A BOW to that episode in my life).

But my all-time favorites will always be CRAZY FOR YOU... and THIS USED TO BE MY PLAYGROUND, which I find haunting and sad.

Oh and I can't help myself... whenever I hear BEAUTIFUL STRANGER, I think of my husband and how we met (thru an IRC chan!).

Anyway, Madonna... here's to more years for you! And here's to your contribution in music! :)

Without meaning to, I finally solved the mystery of the showering divers. My sister, cousin and I wondered about this and were sure it was washing the chlorine off, and modelling sort of till the results came in. Hehe.

I mean, have you seen the men's abs? Ugh. Sinful. And their a$$es too!

I know... I've been turning this blog into an Olympic monologue. So Sorry. It's a major preoccupation now really. And it sucks that the synchronized swimming competition has been moved next week, which would mean I wouldn't be studying again!


Two reasons why I also never followed the Olympics before as closely as am doing now is that...

1) It was only in this decade that we had cable, and

2) It is only now that it happened in a country in the same time zone.


1:18 PM Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Going back to Baguio City proper from La Trinidad, I saw a sign for "Hidden Massage" on a building. I asked my husband if he has an idea what it was and he directed my gaze to another sign in that complex (middle of pic) for "Wild Cets Bar" (Wild Cats dapat).

Ahehe. Now I guess we an all properly deduce what a hidden massage involves :)

Olympic Preoccupation

7:52 PM Monday, August 11, 2008

I've never been a sports buff. But I do have this vague memory of watching gymnastics and swimming events every four years. I never even bothered to know the names of the Olympians, I just really like watching them.

My favorite of all events, of course, is synchronized swimming. Hopefully i'd remember to watch it this Friday. I just spent the whole afternoon watching the swimming events and saw how USA won the 400-meter freestyle relay. Also enjoyed the synchronized diving event where China won (and Great Britain had an 11-year Olympian!).

So yeah... now there's an added reason for me to not study. Bad...

Mother dear has just e-mailed, suggesting that my nephew's baptism and my son's birthday be celebrated together. Para isang handaan na lang daw!

It might seem like am such an utter b!tch but an eyebrow really rose upon the suggestion.

First of all, it's not like they're the ones spending for my son's party. And is she really so clueless of our family dynamics? They have never ceased to remind me that I am their most selfish child, after all, so would I really want my child's day to be shared with Pyro's brother's baptism (which is really a wonderful gift after all the pain)?

And if I bring up the matter of who pays for their guests, would that make me more selfish? My brother earns very little, and considering that his son will require well-baby visits aside from diaper money, can we really expect him to come up with the amount they'd have to pitch in for our catered event? Or would Mommy, who's complaining of the high cost of living in the US, foot their bill?

Or does she really expect she can talk my brother into having a family-only celebration? This is the child, after all, who feels he's not as valued as I am just because he wasn't as bright (and I really don't want to have to bring up the fact that he was given the same opportunities as I was, he only wanted his life more colorful and challenging).

Hay, my Mom!

I just e-mailed her back asking her to think what she suggested over before pushing for it. Because it's really one idea that I think is only welcome to her (and my Dad probably).


Actually, my Dad has been telling me that if we'd hold my son's party in Lipa instead, he'd shoulder the expenses. But having annoying relatives and half the barrio (as well as my cousins' drinking mates) for guests isn't exactly inviting. Plus, my Dad's idea of celebrations isn't the same with the general public. Plus, I had expected to be the first one to give a grandchild... which didn't happen. And I had expected my kids to grow up enjoying their grandparents... and that isn't happening. So i'll be damned if I will be deprived of throwing the kind of birthday party I want for my son.

If that makes me selfish and ungracious, so be it.

the inertia of my life

2:27 PM Friday, August 08, 2008

This could be my resignation finally sinking in... or I have just really come upon a crux in my life. The challenges of being a Mom and going to school again seem not enough. I still feel like I am not doing anything, not fulfilling anything. I do not feel passionate and with a cause/purpose. I feel stuck. I don't feel productive. I can't think of an accomplishment. I don't feel any drive, to move forward, to make things happen.

I feel like nothing is happening in my life.

I am stuck.

Now, how do I rock my boat without seeming as if I don't appreciate the blessings that I do have? because for what it's worth, I am happy that I am happy.

Uhm... can anyone be too happy and content that she ceases to grow anymore?


addendum: of course, it might also be just PMS... ame way that am manic eating and cleaning. I just feel restless for reasons I think are hormonal... I doubt am preggy again anyway

Harry Potter Happiness

2:41 PM Monday, August 04, 2008

First, there was the happy news that JK is publishing The Tales of Beedle the Bard for everyone who wants them to enjoy (and that literally means millions of Harry Potter fans).

And then this, the official trailer of the latest movie (6th), Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

If truth be told, however, I am a hundred times more excited over the new book than the movie. I really think JK can make the Bard series into yet another succesful series.

photohunt: clouds

9:00 PM Saturday, August 02, 2008

Clouds and the Manila Cathedral at an afternoon wedding

Rainclouds as we climbed Mt. Tapyas, Coron

Rickety bridge to the banca taking us to Calauit sanctuary, Palawan

I love clouds. They are very interesting natural works of art. But I cannot seem to take pictures of them right. Sad really, since they're most interesting at sunset and when it's about to rain.

Countdown Tag

8:01 PM Thursday, July 31, 2008

Participants: Me and Mine | Creative in Me | For the LOVE of Food | Little Peanut | Pea in a Podwalk on red |My Random Thoughts kathycot | buhaymisis | when mom speaks | kathycot cooks | MEComposing | Crazy, Happy Arevalos | Hope This Helps You | Mec as Mom | AcadeMEC | YOU

Ten movies you’d watch over and over:
:: My Bestfriend's Wedding, My Big, Fat Greek Wedding, Titanic, Monsters, Inc., Ice Age, Finding Nemo, Love Actually, Grease, Sound of Music, Mac and Me

Nine people you enjoy the company of:
:: Husband, Yakee, sister, Libet, Lota, Fuz, Allee, Te Gang, Len

Eight things you’re wearing:
:: Shorts, undies, top, smile or frown depending on how kulit my son is... and when I go out, I wear a bra, my engagement and wedding rings and shoes

Seven things on your mind:
:: School work, paid blogging, my baby, my husband, my nephew, upcoming outing with cousins, keeping the peace at home

Six objects you touch every day:
:: Computers, cellphones, diapers, remote control, electric fan, orange glass

Five things you do everyday:
:: Breastfeed, eat, go online, text and read

Four things that you see when you turn your head to the right:
:: play pen, diapers, books and plastic chests

Three of your favorite things that are red in color:
:: my son (because of his name), Skittles and underwear!

Two people who have influenced your life the most:
:: My sister and my husband

One person who has been nice to you today:
:: My sister, because she keeps on taking care of my son for me :)

Now, I am tagging Nick, Ghee, Mari and Tin

Kids say the funniest things right?

My SIL recently got braces. She told me that she was scolding her three-year old daughter for being extra-spirited one afternoon when the girl piped up, "OK na Mommy, OK na, wag moko duraan!"


And isn't it funny sometimes how they'd twist our own words to use against us... or other kids? Same child, when faced with a two-year old playing with a toy she wanted, was heard saying... "Sophia, sharing is good!"

Favorite Quote

12:43 AM Wednesday, July 30, 2008

I have many favorite quotes. I am not really that eloquent anyway, and I tend to be verbose so quotes help me get sentiments across.

One such fave is this:

It's my personal battlecry when I find myself having to make difficult decisions. And of course, my standards of PURE LOVE are high indeed. At least, I get to remind myself to shake off any self-serving motivation. And generally, I can live with myself... and have no problem looking at myself in the mirror.

Anyway, I am sharing this now to you guys... just in case you find yourself in similar thresholds, or crises.

Starbucks and Sungit

2:07 AM Monday, July 28, 2008

I am properly ashamed that instead of investing on better things, I have been spending on my favorite Starbucks cream chip drink (grande, with extra whipped cream, hold the chocolate syrup, and extra caramel drizzle) served in a venti cup so the whipped cream won't overflow, with a straw that has a sort of spoon at the end of it so I can scrape up the choco bits and caramel, if I wanted to.

Anyway, sometimes, to save... hubs would have the whipped cream on his drink just put in mine (and the chocolate syrup on mine put in his). That's still P15, you know.

And usually, baristas would find the order amusing, if initially confusing, but they're usually more intrigued. And it doesn't take them long to get it right. And they chat and engage while the orders are being made.

Now, we try for the first time to order the same at that Starbucks along Macapagal Ave (not the one at the Blue Wave Mall area). Not only did we have to repeat our order at least two times to three different baristas, not one smiled at us during the (their) confusion. And heaven help me, I got readily annoyed and expressed my frustration over their inability to get what we want. And the more I took a deep breath and employed the use of cups to more easily get the idea across, the more we weren't being misunderstood. What's more, nobody was even smiling at us, or apologizing for the slow uptake, or just chatting us up.

Not one of them even smiled at my son... who was pointing at the pastries over by the glass display case, which would have been cute for most people.

Hay nako talaga!

I admit to having low tolerance but I am actually far from war-freak. And I really don't think it's wrong of us to expect a more satisfying service from them in terms of interaction because their frappes average P150 per friggin' cup! It's not like you're buying Nescafe 3-in-1 from a sari-sari store no!

Spoiled Angelina

8:22 PM Sunday, July 27, 2008

I have not been watching much TV lately. So it was only recently that I have enjoyed this... however, it's really not something kids should be allowed to watch since they are likely to immitate it...


Meanwhile, the Pinoy Parenting Blog Carnival is asking parents everywhere what type of parents they are. Care to join us?


Oh... and I have consolidated the most common ways I know how to earn from home so you might want to check it out.

It Must Be The Top

10:24 PM Thursday, July 24, 2008

Because two complete strangers tried chatting me up in two different malls today.


Talk about feeling violated.

Maybe it's because one was this foreigner guy, and both of them are old. Way older than me. Ugh.

You Would Have Been Five Today

2:16 AM Monday, July 21, 2008

To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die. ~Thomas Campbell

I find myself unable to browse your pictures still... or mostly. But since I had to look for a picture for the layout I was making for you, I couldn't help but notice that your brother actually looked like you when you were younger. So I guess Ice will be super cute as well.

You know Andie, your former playmate here? She's already in Grade 1. Remember how she used to refer to you as her boyfriend? Anyway, now she refers to your cousin as that. I hope you don't mind. I guess she's really just missing you.

Please continue looking out for us from where you are... and do inspire your parents to be better parents for Ice. Oh, and I always tell those I encounter who've recently suffered a loss that you'd be welcoming their departed and making them feel at home in heaven. I trust you're doing a good job.

Sigh. I guess, in order to live in people's hearts, we indeed have to die first. But you were loved, darling Py, and thus will always be.

credits: and

Maybe because of my insecurities about being a Mom and ability to comfort my child, as well as frustration over my inability to manage my time, and thus struggling further with schoolwork... I decided to dig myself deeper into mess by taking time off the whole weekend and spending it watching Charmed.

I only got to finish Season 1 though. My gosh, it was around 20 episodes, 40 minutes each. And I realized that not only did I miss some 4-5 episodes, Prue and Phoebe actually used to wear clothes back then. Maybe it was in Season 2 that they started the skimpy war, and when Paige came into the scene, she was just as skin-baring.

And by golly, I love Prue. Maybe because i'm also the eldest and like being bossy. Paige never did give the same fire to the trio, so it was really a surprise too that they got to Season 8... when Prue was only around for three seasons.

I dared not start Season 2 lest I really don't meet my assignment deadlines. And if truth be told, I would actually be surprised if I finish all seasons because I am expecting I will lose interest around Season 4 or 5, just like when it was being aired before.

Meanwhile, I heard there's going to be a 90210 spinoff and that they're even bringing Brenda Walsh back. Yey.

Shall it Quake tomorrow?

2:23 PM Thursday, July 17, 2008

Am sure some of you have probably read the e-mail already about some Indian seer who prophesied that a big earthquake is going to hit the Philippines on July 18, 2008.

And although I am generally cynical about prophesies, I also cannot turn a blind eye to recent earthquakes in Asia and our country being smack dab in the Ring of Fire zone, I wouldn't actually be surprised if we do get an earthquake or some volcanic explosion. Obviously, something has been shifting down there. It's just a matter of when we too will be hit by catastrophe again.

A Pastor with Guts

7:03 PM Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I have actually been looking for this prayer for so long now... I cannot explain how or why I was touched by it but it does give me pause as to those things I've started believing were MY options...

Thought you might enjoy this interesting prayer given in Kansas at the opening session of their Senate. It seems prayer still upsets some people. When Minister Joe Wright was asked to open the new session of the Kansas Senate, everyone was expecting the usual generalities, but this is what they heard:

'Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, 'Woe to those who call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done.

We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.

We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.

We have killed our unborn and called it choice.

We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.

We have neglected to discipline our children, and called it building self esteem.

We have abused power and called it politics.

We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition.

We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography, and called it freedom of expression.

We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.

Search us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin, and set us free. Amen!'

The response was immediate. A number of legislators walked out during the prayer in protest. In 6 short weeks, Central Christian Church, where Rev. Wright is pastor, logged more than 5,000 phone calls with only 47 of those calls responding negatively. The church is now receiving international requests for copies of this prayer from India , Africa, and Korea ..

Commentator Paul Harvey aired this prayer on his radio program, 'The Rest of the Story,' and received a larger response to this program than any other he has ever aired. With the Lord's help, may this prayer sweep over our nation and wholeheartedly become our desire so that we again can be called 'one nation under God.'

Maybe I like this prayer so much because I am aware that we are so governed with the pursuit of convenience... and it is far easier for us to rationalize things, and seek alternative explanations and push the envelope in everything just to avoid sadness, growing old, broken hearts, boredom, illness, etc.

Are people happier and enjoying more love and richer relationships today? I don't know. But what does the fact of childhood and teenage suicides tell us?


And in the meantime... what kind of society is America coming to be where prayer is deemed offensive just because there could be non-Christians around? Where you can't even pray openly anymore lest it offends someone who doesn't (even in schools, kid are becoming less tolerant of religion)? And why would non-Christians and atheists get offended when somebody else prays?

Feeling Sexy Again

11:03 PM Sunday, July 13, 2008

I am currently around 125 lbs, depending on whether i've slept or how much i've eaten.

Anyway, last Friday, I went to my old office because it's the company's anniversary. I won't be ashamed to say that I dressed up nicely in my most flattering outfits and that I basked in the illusion (because they all said I was thin when am not) it created that made former colleagues compliment me (and some, green with envy). I even wore thongs again (ugh, it felt weird to be feeling breezy down there, lolz).

For a moment or two, I wanted to be back. See, I discovered that they've installed bidets in the comfort rooms. I know, that's so babaw. But I have a thing for bidets, see. And since I always wash even after peeing only, bidets would have been appreciated in those days when colleagues would see me carrying a huge TABO (because I didn't want to be bitin when I wash) and tease me about it.

And then there's the fact that we now have this huge ref in our department... which, had I still been working, would probably be filled with my snacks. We had to make do with a personal-sized ref for years and now, my former colleagues have this huge refrigeration space they're not maximizing. Sigh.

But apart from these things, I don't really miss the work I did there. I've done my bit with the bureacracy and really do not want to be part of the corruption of the higher-ups anymore.

But back to feeling sexy, I was utterly shameless in projecting and smiling at old faces. Hehe. And for a moment, it was really very nice to be all dolled up and having appreciative male attention cast my way again... from people other than hubs.

It made me feel my former kind of 'human'. So now i'm bent on making sure I buy new clothes (that fit) and avoid looking homely. But maybe I should make sure to go out weekly too, so that I would at least run a comb through my hair.

Where to get Cheap Glasses

10:28 PM Saturday, July 12, 2008

Incredible Stylish New Frames From Zenni are now being offered at really low, low prices. Even if you're fussy with the frames style, Zenni Optical $ 8 Rx Eyeglasses are definitely un-shabby options.This way, you can even get yourself a second or third pair, which you can leave in your car or in your office. That would certainly save you rummaging time.

Prospective clients also need not wonder about the quality just because its cheap. It is, after all, a very trusted brand. And just recently, Zenni Optical was on FOX news! That explains the number of peple wearing shades and glasses in the coolest possible ways these days.

Interesting Tag

2:26 PM Thursday, July 10, 2008

Yup... I am breaking my silence here thru a tag by Sheryl :D

Have fun!

Have you ever gone on a blind date? Nope
Skipped school? Yes, in college.
Been on a plane? Yes.
Been lost? Not really, but I always feel lost in a new place.
Swam in the ocean? Yes.
Cried yourself to sleep? I cry, then I sleep. But I don't think i've ever really cried myself to sleep.
Played cops and robbers? Yes, I think. :D
Played dolls? I did... but I didn't enjoy it as much as I did just reading books.
Recently colored with crayons? Nope.
Sang Karaoke? Yes... despite everybody complaining.
Paid for a meal with coins only? Yes... i've had my share of living from allowance to mouth :D
Done something you said you wouldn't? A lot, and it's a good thing you're not asking me to list them down :)
Cheated on a test? I tried many times but it never happens really.
Made prank phone calls? Yes. One time we called a friend and I pretended he got me pregnant. Can't help laughing in the end though.
Caught a snowflake on your tongue? Not yet...
Danced in the rain? Nah... played in the rain lang!
Written a letter to Santa Claus? I think I did when I was very young.
Watched the sunrise with someone you care about? Weirdly enough, I think I have... does watching the sun rise with an ex count?
Been kissed under the mistletoe? Nope
Gone ice skating? Yes.
Been skinny dipping outdoors? I wouldn't have the guts!
Favorite drink I'm allowed on a regular basis - water! :D
Tattoos? None and never!
Body piercings? Ears.
Vacation spot? Bring me back to El Nido and i'll be happy.
Eaten cookies for dinner? Yes, but i'd still eat proper meals after.
Ever been on TV? Yes... some speech ekek in school.
Ever been in a car accident? Yes, when I was a lot younger.
Favorite number and why? 13 and only because of the stigma to it.
Favorite movie? Titanic. Love it forever.
Favorite holiday? Christmas, eventhough am still trying to reconstruct the Christmases I loved growing up.
Favorite smells? My husband and son. Vanilla.
What do you do to relax? Read Harry Potter.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Mother of 3 and still as happy as can be.

Now am tagging MommyBa, Toni, Baker Boy and Jeanny


Oh and it doesn't have a picture but I swear this No-Bake Walnut Brownie recipe of mine is great.

I Owe Bloghops

2:53 AM Sunday, July 06, 2008

Forgive me... I know I owe bloghops big time.

But apart from school, my son and I have also been sick... and i'm losing sleep again. And I shall stop giving excuses.

Hopefully, I will darken your doorsteps this week.

Hurrah for Manny Pacquiao!!!

12:18 AM Thursday, July 03, 2008

A tad late, I know.

I actually just watched the fight (pirated DVD sold that same afternoon of the match) this afternoon.

I hated that Manny is such GMA's puppy. And that his ego usually gets the better of him. And that he ran for office (good thing even his kababayans know the other one was really doing a great job). And that he released an album/single (?).

And I am not a big fan of boxing, I know.

But something still has to be said for him for having achieved much in a sport that is bloody at best. And he is really known for his training discipline (my gosh, four basketball games every day?!) so whatever he accomplished, you know he deserved it. So I guess you can actually excuse/forgive some of his failings (as he's only human after all). I mean come on, we elected a President to power when we know how many women he kept... so his love child with someone shouldn't be that unforgivable. And he earned the money he uses to gamble!

So hurrah Manny. God indeed seems to be on your side :) But do consider retiring early to save some of your brains.


I'm bad but am blogging because I don't want to do my assignments. Yikes.

photohunt: bright

11:24 AM Saturday, June 28, 2008

This is a real favorite shot of mine, one i've posted several times already (it's even won us a camera in my husband's company's inter-region Photo Contest). Ants have always been the perfect example of helping hands, of how working together translates to a future that's bright, instead of bleak; a tomorrow filled with promise, instead of regret; a someday, where you reap your just rewards.

And yes, bananas are uually known for their bright yellow color :)

Plus, now we know how many ants it takes to carry a banana chip!

the high road

9:51 PM Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I love my brother. Shamefully though, only because he is my brother.

He turned 29 today and to celebrate, he invited all his tambay friends from our street last night to go drinking at our home... where he doesn't really live anymore. So aside from being upset because of the noise they were making till 4 AM today, that kept the neighbors (and us, my son and husband included) awake, and slightly annoyed for having our pantry and ref raided (one or two canned good would have been okay, more than that affects our meal budget already... and MY chocolates are MINE alone, and therefore MINE to give away)... I was also royally pissed that my brother could afford to splurge on five cases of beer grande (though he was happily saying to his friends to thank Lhuillier for the beer, implying he pawned something) but had to get some of our parents' money from me several days before to pay for his son's immunization.

My mother is literally breaking her back in the US to earn money. All her retirement benefits have already been spent on Py's treatments before. So a part of me cannot help but coldly wish for lightning to strike my brother for not even having learned gratitude and consideration from all that has happened.

I was literally torn last night... pitiful of a brother who did lose his firstborn, smug about having a good life compared to all those tambays in our home, offended for my parents, annoyed because I really don't get why those without money will choose to hold drinking sessions, sad for my nephew who has my brother for a Dad, embarassed that my husband has to be deprived of sleep when he pays all the bills in both houses, angry that my brother is without consideration...

I fought to control my temper. Although I didn't think his birhday is reason enough to be a jerk, I chose the high road. It was pointless to pick a fight anyway, considering he's drunk. Besides, going on a rampage would only result in my husband having to intervene, and I really didn't want to invite more trouble for him as well.

The high road. I'm not even sure where it is exactly, or what it looks like. I am so scared of enabling my brother to be more of a jerk, but I don't know which fights in relation to him are worth it anymore. My Mom enables him... and I have picked so many fights about it with my Mom already too. You would think, losing a child will already teach someone about consideration...

Before, when my brother's in a fix, I'd always tell our sis that what makes me angry the most is karmic retribution. That life will collect from my brother in a big way for every wrong choice he made, and that I was scared because karma usually involves someone beloved to you. Back then, I was scared that something has to happen to our Mom, something awful, in order to push my brother to do right.

And in my darkest moments pondering my brother, I couldn't help but think that Py might have been his chance to do right, but God saw him undeserving of the chance so He punished him instead by taking Py away.

I really feel so lost. What else can I do? And how do I love a brother for who he is, and not just because we share the same parents?

when friends fall out...

6:25 PM Monday, June 23, 2008

... and going back again and again on everything that happened only makes you realize how it's an exercise in futility... that it was partly inevitable, partly beyond any ONE's control... partly everybody's fault and not...

all you can do is take heart... that even friends for a season, as opposed to a lifetime, were your friends for a reason. There is a reason. A purpose. Something greater than even the friendship itself. Something greater than what was, what is, and what will be.

And that keeping your heart humble and your mind open is the key to surviving the loss... if there were losses... and to knowing which pieces need picking up.

In the meantime, I shall grieve what was... so I can look forward to what can be.


And in the great scheme of things, what is this pain and loss, compared to the devastation Frank brought to the lives and livelihood of so many Filipinos over the weekend?

Mind you, my friendships are the world to me. But still, I know me and my friends are luckier still than others.

photohunt: water

10:58 AM Saturday, June 21, 2008

Clouds are water just waiting to fall back down again, to fill our lakes and rivers and seas again. And water is nature's way of reflecting back to the heavens all of its beauty, all the splendour of today, all the promise of tomorrow.

at El Paradiso, Bataan

at Badjao Restaurant, Pto. Princesa

ten kilos

6:34 PM Friday, June 20, 2008

Funny how that particular weight can bring back so much pain.

My son was standing on the weighing scale this morning, and we saw that he's now ten kilos heavy.

My late nephew Py was always thin. And he was stuck in ten kilos for a long time, and he was already two years old when we discovered the cancer.

All the fear, all the pain, all the ugly, bitter memories... they're suddenly back again. And I can't help but feel some sort of guilt again, and an immense gratitude, that my son is very healthy.

SM Advantage Sale

11:08 PM Tuesday, June 17, 2008

It was the closest to a stampede i'd seen in years.

Imagine people with grocery carts and baskets all rushing forward to grab groceries. And in the pandemonium, people ultimately got confused. Nobody was heeding the grocery clerk announcing that SM Advantage members are only entitled to FIVE Buy 1, Take 1 items and TEN Value Bags. So what happened was, people were grabbing the value bags in twos, thinking they were the Buy 1, Take 1 stuff.

And since Gardenia White Bread was Buy 1, Take 1, there were carts filled with them... and I couldn't help but wonder if those families really eat that much bread. I mean, they expire within five days or so.

And when Baygon products were brought out, also Buy 1, Take 1 items... you'd suddenly think that there is a mosquito plague in Manila.

We got Post cereal, sugar, soy sauce, Baygon spray and sausages in Buy 1, Take 1. We got baby bath, CDO burger patties, dishwashing liquid and some chips in Value Bags. But we practised much self-control and wisdom already. Trust me, it isn't easy not to be swept by the mob into a panic buying frenzy. It's really a great marketing idea to get people buying, and enrolling in the SM Advantage Rewards Program.

I mean I saw a lot of people buying colas! For sure, everybody went over budget. Even chicken was Buy 1, Take 1!

This happened just tonight at SM Manila. And I think there's another similar sale on the 24th, Manila Day.

I didn't take pictures anymore because I was literally dodging carts! Some even tried shopping off our carts! Imagine!

Overheard on Father's Day

2:52 PM Monday, June 16, 2008

We decided to sun our son along Manila Bay.

Just before a group started on their aerobics, the men were shouting "Araw namin ngayon, hindi kami maglalaba! Hindi kami magluluto!" ("It's our day today! We won't do the laundry! We won't cook!")

A woman then replied, "Sige, mag-alaga naman kayo ng bata!" ("Okay, take care of the children instead.")

Hope everybody duly remembered their fathers... if not for their inspiration and love, at least for the challenges they posed to us so we'd choose to lead better lives.

photohunt: Emotion (s)

10:32 AM Saturday, June 14, 2008

Girls dressed up as angels during the SABOG ("shower")

This was taken during the Sabog (shower of petals for Mama Mary) at the Tapusan (End) of Flores de Mayo (May Flower Festival).

Religious feasts such as this are often emotionally charged events, though this isn't as serious as The Feast of the Black Nazarene, as hopeful as the Obando Fertility Dance Festival, or as crazy as the Sinulog or Pintados Festival.

And during the PUTONG, the transfer of crowns to the Kapitana next in line, I usually get misty-eyed. I think it has a lot to do with the music that accompanies the ceremony, which sounds like a lament and a goodbye, and then ends into a sort of congratulatory march.


8:17 PM Friday, June 13, 2008

In just a month, I gained ten pounds.


But I am still gorging myself up on my niece's birthday cake. You know, those ones with sugar flowers and marshmallow icing? Ugh. I love birthday cakes!


Advance Happy Father's day... to everybody's Pops :)

Re-reading Harry Potter

11:55 PM Thursday, June 12, 2008

I know... for the nth time!

In a way, it's different re-reading the whole series again, knowing it's already finished, knowing already what happened. Because you get to appreciate just how vigilant JK Rowling was about squeezing hints and paying attention to details. That, or she has one heck of an editor.

And you really get the feeling that it's not only the characters who evolved in each book, JK did as well.

I am not so sure if she'll ever write anything that will surpass the Harry Potter mania. In my mind, she doesn't have to anyway. Not only are her kids and grandkids assured of a comfortable life just from the royalties alone, but she has already come down in history as the woman who got kids reading again.

Still, I would always be miffed that she killed off Fred. Hehe.


Btw, may I interest you with Father's Day Gift Ideas?

My Heart Goes Out To Her

4:35 PM Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Over a decade ago, I brought along my kid sister to my then-bf's house. His Mom was too enthusiastic with her "hello" that my sister was alarmed and upset. She cried. She must have been nine or ten years old.

Last Saturday, the same woman made my son cry with her enthusiastic greeting. My son cried.

And it's really weird because it's not like she had a booming voice. She's actually very soft-spoken and lovely, very warm and gracious. And it is that grace that amazes me because she was all smiles and good manners when we saw her last Saturday. It was her husband's wake.

She lost her eldest child just last year.

So when my ex informed me that his Dad died, I immediately thought of her. Worried about her. Because she was a Mom I really hoped to be like. And despite these tragedies, she managed to remain luminous in her gentle presence... that I got comforted instead of doing the comforting.

Help me pray for the wife left behind by Gerardo Belen.

I wasn't really a fan but I grew up knowing he's a respected, established star of the Philippine Cinema. May his family find comfort from relatives and friends.

a rant on borrowers

3:54 PM Friday, June 06, 2008

Believe me, at the height of my pregnancy, I have verbally abused my own Dad for his attitude about lending money, and then harassing us later on to go get back the loan for him.

I was (still am) upset with him because, although we're not poor, we're not exactly rolling in money. And just the thought of them breaking their backs working in the US (Dad is now a gardener, Mom is a caregiver) just to build a life for my sister there hurts me to no end. It's not that I don't appreciate nor understand the sacrifice they're making, but I hate that they are still working that hard when they're already in their 60s. And that's just it, they are making lots of sacrifices... so why would my Dad just lend tons of money to people who haven't even paid their previous loans, right?

I can go on and on about my Dad but the title of this post is "a rant on borrowers" and I just want to rant about someone specific.

We have been trying to get back my dad's money since last year but still haven't even gotten paid a cent. I know, one problem with such cases is that few people actually go to jail for owing money, and sending borrowers to court is so much hassle. But I am really at my wits' end with this woman. She has promised so many times that she'd pay, we've even gotten several promissory notes signed by her etc. but still nothing!

We just can't give up on her because my Dad insists we get his money back. And I do want to get that money and deposit it in my Mom's account to replenish her savings. I don't know how else to force the borrower's hand to pay!

And it's not like we're being very irrational. But the woman herself wouldn't go out of her way to come up with a payment scheme. We have come up with different staggered payment schemes for her but she just hasn't made any initial payment! And it's not like they're super poor either, they sell rice in the Lipa market. And again, it's not like we're asking for hundred thousands upfront... grrr.

And then she'd have the audacity to remind us that she only borrowed money from my Dad and that she isn't a bad person! That, of course, makes me gnash my teeth some more! I literally told her that she shouldn't dare say she's not a bad person because she has been intentionally causing us grief with collecting.

I'm just confined to home mostly so I literally cannot go pull her hair right now, and use her face to wipe some floor. I am absolutely hopping, fuming mad! Grr. Maybe next weekend, i'd really personally pay her a visit. It seems she never got truly scared of my Mom and my brother... so let's see if I can't set her right.


The thing is, I know how cruel I get when i'm mad... which was why I avoided meeting her all those times before because I didn't want to be super mean to someone. I also always remind myself that this woman is a Mom like me, that she has kids who must love her and depend on her.

Dang it.


Which is why I really don't intend to ever loan money to someone, unless I can really do without that sum. Because getting back a loan is just so hard, and few borrowers have the integrity to even come to you and discuss how they can pay, or what's keeping them from paying.


4:48 PM Thursday, June 05, 2008

Craving Chicken Joy... so I gave in to yet another impulsive buy/binge and had the spaghetti/chicken joy meal from Jollibee.

It now costs P90. Sigh. I remember a time when P40.00 can get you a meal in Jollibee. That time is no more.

Jeepney fares are already P8. I think I can still remember a time when it was only P1.50. And softdrinks also cost that much (Coke 500ml used to cost P7, I think). And movies only cost P21.

Weirdly enough, community tax certificates (cedulas) still only cost P5.00 if you're not earning.

Still... this gave me pause. And another reason why I should quit my Starbucks addiction from last May. It is just soooo stupid to have spent thousands on a choco chip drink. I might as well just eat up the choco chips we still have from Baguio.


1:58 PM Tuesday, June 03, 2008

My cousins are watching Wowowee and one of them said that she hates Willie Revillame. She also mentioned that Willie had Lara Quigaman (?) removed from the show because Lara was not receptive to his amorous indecent proposals... but used as reason Lara's BF always being about.

I am not verifying this anymore because Willie has never been known for his gentlemanly ways anyway.

Which brings me to Pokwang, who I absolutely adore. I prefer her over ai-Ai, who seems to be in some sort of mid-life crisis by trying to come across as a sex symbol (but all her Belo ads ever did is make me miss Morticia Addams). But I digress. I watch Wowowee sometimes for Pokwang, wondering what her outfit will be. And at least she knows she's co-host in Wowowee not because of her kangable possibility for Willie, but because she really has talent.

But I have to hand it to Willie, he's able to come across as godsend to Pinoys while others would attest to his being a pig.


I also watch Wowowee for the stories of the contestants... of course, some of it are contrived or exaggerated but it can be very illuminating as well.

I've always wanted to be a UP student. First of all, because of the prestige it suggests (or used to suggest) and the fact that a much older friend of mine entertained me with lots of stories about attending UP (mainly of having classmates coming into class with wings... literally). I was all too eager to embrace an institution that embraced individuality and non-conformity so long as you have the potential for greatness.

I wasn't bright enough for it after all, believing our guidance counselor in high school that we'd only be wasting money and effort trying to get in. She told us (and I stupidly believed her) that UP only gets people from public schools, and since I was attending a private Catholic school, I just decided not to 'waste my time and money'.

Maybe she should have used the word 'prioritizes' instead. Or maybe I shouldn't have been intimidated, believing I wouldn't get in. Maybe I was also very scared that I actually didn't have it in me to get in, and not trying also meant I wouldn't fail. Whatever.

And when I found out I could actually transfer there when I was in my second year in college, with most of my subjects to be credited (I forgot the term we use for schools with such agreements), I dared not leave one specific friend who stood by me through all our peer group drama. Maybe I was still scared that time... or too unwilling to adapt all over again.

So I just went on to graduate 22nd in the whole graduating class (third in our course), took up masters in measurement and evaluation for kicks a year after, didn't finish that after attending 36 units worth of classes... and then pursued mountaineering for the kicks lacking in my life instead.

Blah. Blah. Blah.

But now, I am officially a student again. And a UP student at last, albeit a UP Open University student. Those facilitating the orientation program last Saturday assured us that UPOU students are of equal worth/potential to regular UP students (but yes, they don't expect us to cause campus riots). And we actually have the added challenge of being internally motivated to learn and finish our course.

I have signed up for Masters in Distance Education. Explaining the choice in my essay, I basically said that, "I want to take up Masters in Distance Education because I hope to homeschool my children."

Isn't that being ironic and not at the same time? :)

I actually wanted to specialize in Non-Formal Education but it wasn't being offered in UPOU. MDE was the closest course to it. So here I am... may I rise to the challenge.

Really gross post ahead.

Okay. We live in Manila. As in Paco, Malate area Manila. Old Manila. Manila City. Near markets. And esteros. Etc.

We sort of live near a squatters' area given that our 'barangay' is located between a railroad and an estero. Although the people in our street actually own their homes, and these homes have titles, just a stone's throw away from us all are the squatters.

And have I said that we live in the Old Manila area?

I have? Okay.

And what's one of the common problems of living in an old city? Aside from the noise and pollution?

Pests, of course.

Our homes are apartment-style homes. And though we're not Bree van de Camp OC about cleanliness, I like to believe that our homes are 'kept' homes. But these homes are old homes (our walls overlap and all that sh!t) that my parents bought over two decades ago. We've renovated some but the structure's generally what it's always been.

Thus, we had to contend with our share of cockroaches and mice. They're gross but we're used to them and have learned to live with them. We make sure we still dispose of our trash properly, and don't leave food and spills for them to feast on etc. There isn't a day that I didn't wish for them to evaporate from the face of the earth but I know that between their species and ours, they are made of hardier stuff.

So, although they are a nuisance, I can live with them. I've learned to live with them. Bug sprays and sticky paper catchers are part of our grocery list.

But what of rats that are as big as cats?

Have I said anything about my morbid fear of rats? I'm scared of mice too (all rodents in fact, and rodent-looking thingies like rabbits and tarsiers) but they're generally too small to actually threaten me. But rats? They're not only scary-looking, the implications of all the germs and disease they bring along with them is just mind-boggling. Plus, they actually destroy properties.

My childhood is rich with stories of me squealing while standing on a chair as I watched my parents/our helper de-rat the house. But then we had a cat for a while... and didn't have to deal with rats in our home for a long time.

But I guess times are hard, even for rats. So they're now extra vigilant about making homes for themselves in people's homes. And no matter how much we clean our home, if neighbors don't do the same, rats can still propagate. Plus, they have the canals running through all homes as their designated subway to people's scraps (and laundry, and pictures, and toys, etc.)

Rats managed to gnaw away the cement in our kitchen cabinets (those above the canal) and thus managed to access our home. They were having a field day in the kitchen when I was pregnant (this is at the other house, where we still eat and cook, and not in our home, where we sleep and watch TV and go online) and I really thought i'd miscarry because of them. I stopped going there.

Then suddenly the rats stopped coming. So all's well again in our old homes.

Then they returned. The house beside my parents' underwent major renovations, which seemed to drive the rats crazy. It's funny in a bad way but it seems the houses in our compound shared the rats so when this one house got repaired, we got its share. Or maybe they were all nesting there and were just driven to the neighbors. I dunno.

And for the life of me, they got to a chair where my son's sketches were kept in an envelope. Imagine how violated and threatened I felt, having my son's sketches all gnawed up. Grr.

So enough was enough. We had a cousin of mine clean the canal, close up all holes he could find, install steel bars in the CR, etc.

Just three days after we've 'dealt' with them... there was a big rat again. We thought that maybe it was wise enough to lie low during the repair, nesting behind my father's old component. My cousin managed to trap it and kill it. (hurrah for her)

But the following day, there were more! Ugh.

My cousin killed them all again. Which is good really but for the fact that the rats couldn't then tell the others to stop going to our home for they will be killed. Sigh. How are they getting inside?

Through the pipe of our kitchen sink, we discovered.

Talk about tenacious. Stubborn. Etc.

So we started leaving a big pot of water there so they couldn't get through.

This morning, we found a hole gnawed on the woodwork of the screened window that also acts as exhaust window in the kitchen.

I am going crazy here.

My Mother insists that we use poison but my cousin is scared of using any because she says she's easily affected by them. I can't handle the poison since i'm breastfeeding and am scared too. My husband has offered to do it... but we're scared of one other thing.

What if the rats die trapped somewhere they shouldn't be? And what if they also spread the poison and it affects people (I did say we are connected via canals to those living in slums right?).

People abroad might suggest that we hire exterminators... which we can do, but won't really solve our problem.

Because the real issue here is that Manila is infested with pests. And unless there is a city-wide program to clean up surroundings, I doubt this will be remedied by rat traps and poison.

So yes, it's the biggest incentive for me to get out of here. I am just having problems with coming up with the money for that too.