Graduated!

So last year I wanted to start driving again. Earlier this year, I was bugging hubby to let me enroll myself but budgetary constraints didn’t let me. But my being held helpless (overacting I know) whenever I have my own lakad but I couldn’t go without having to drag hubby made me resolved to really get into driving school. And so I did. And I passed with flying colors yipee! Got the shortest course since I feel I still know the basics but only need the confidence to get on the road again. Oh yeah! Of course, I know the hubby still wouldn’t let me go by myself for a while. Hmmm I think he would not even let me drive even with him there. But I’ll get my way around this. I wouldn’t want to kill myself, would I? Or even dent the car? Because that would mean additional expenses, which I don’t need right now.

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Another first: swimming!

Mama and I had our post-birthday and Mothers’ Day celebrations over the weekend. I am now officially wala na sa kalendaryo. Strangely, I don’t feel bothered by it unlike some other people who freak out at the slightest signs of aging. Nope, not me. Save for my career, everything else is flourishing. So cheers to me on my 32nd! I thank the good Lord for giving me another year with which to enjoy with my loved ones.

We stayed overnight at the Thunderbird Resorts in Binangonan, Rizal, a 45-minute drive from our place. The place was gorgeous! But some of their service really sucked big time. For one, check-in time was supposedly 2pm. We got there half an hour before, and it took them about an hour and 15 minutes later to have our room ready. Minor grrr anyhow. We were all getting a bit antsy by then, and finally, we were able to check in. Next, their sheets smelled a little awful. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but they smelled like…sweat? But that’s about it.

The rest of our stay was fun. We all stayed in one huge suite, which was fine, but then again, I didn’t get to avail of my free massage! What a bummer because I was so looking forward to it. But they didn’t have a spa center, and all their spa services are done in-room. And I couldn’t very well have one with my folks, brother and baby with me. It would have been too weird, right?

Food was great, including speedy room service. A bit on the steep side though.

The best part: swimming. It was Mischa’s first! And I was very well the excited mother who seems to be experiencing it for the first time, too. I prepared very well for it, buying her swimsuit, floater, sun block, etc. She seemed a little hesitant at first, protesting loudly when dipped in the water, but she got the hang of it soon enough. The little girl had a blast! Now, if we could do it again real soon.

We also sneaked to the Fiesta Casino as soon as the little tike was asleep. Hubby and I just watched Mico though, didn’t want to try our luck at any of the “games”. I couldn’t understand any of it anyway.

My big girl

makulit while waiting for check in

The view from the lobby

View from our room at noon

First time in the water (slightly afraid)

View from our room at dusk

Thunderbird

Echos lang

Another thunderbird shot

bagong gising

View from our room in the morning

Rumarampa

love, love, love!

"swimming" to daddy

breakfast at Koi restaurant

pretty, pretty girl 🙂

Eating alone

Koi resto

Flowers

Up we go

Trying on mommy's sunglasses

...and having fun at it

Baby Rylee

My n@wie family is reeling from shock and pain right now. One of our sisters, Escie and her husband, Rudy, lost their 19-day old son, Rylee, over the weekend. I had to try really hard to keep my tears from falling as I read how Escie recounted the final day and hours of Rylee’s life. He fought and struggled, and endured so much pain, before the Lord claimed the borrowed life. It was especially hard for our virtual family because we bore witness to Escie losing another child last year to miscarriage. Now another child was taken away from them. And yet, she has surrendered humbly to the will of God. I couldn’t even begin to think if it was me. I don’t know if I will have the courage to be as strong and faithful as she is. She may have a lot of questions now, starting with the “why me’s”, but instead of dwelling on it, she has accepted her fate with abandon although everything is probably tearing her apart. Oh how must she feel! I wish we all could hug them and be with them is this time of need.

Dear Lord, please bless Escie’s heart.

Goodbye little Rylee. Rest in peace forever.

Belated Happy Mothers’ Day

Three generations of mothers and daughters. I wish my lola, my second mother, were still here to be with Mischa. To see her, hug her, be proud of her. Sigh!

Anyway, I don’t want to get all senti and all. I wish I could, but as it is, I am always swamped with work and I couldn’t muster enough energy to open my laptop at night to post. We didn’t even get to celebrate mothers’ day as is the norm. Both brother and I are trying so hard to fit seeing each other into our schedules. We’ll find some middle ground soon.

Happy mothers’ day to all!

Blessed John Paul II

Catholics now have another vehicle with which to ask for intercession for prayers. With the recent beatification of Pope John Paul II, the late pontiff has now joined the ranks of intercessors, including Mary, the Virgin Mother and a host of other saints whom Catholics venerate and offer their prayers to.

Now, I don’t do any devotions or regular prayers even, but I do what one calls conversations with the Lord. Although I admit that I have gone several trips to St. Jude whenever I am in low points in my life. And coming from a Catholic school, I have a fond devotion to Mama Mary and the Sto. Nino. As opposed to my mother who faithfully goes to Baclaran every Wednesdays and Quiapo every Fridays when we still had a yaya to watch over Mischa. Anyhow, as I said, I am not a “devoted”, religious person although I have developed an intimate relationship with the Supreme Being my own way.

But with this beatification and eventual canonization of PJP II, I might just be converted. There is just such magic and charisma to this guy. I felt it as a 15-year old waving a flag as his pope mobile zoomed my way. For a fraction of a second, I felt his energy. It was so palpable that people around me almost cried…in relief, in joy, and in a myriad of other ways. It was the same thing again as I listened to his homily a few yards away, lying on makeshift blankets with my high school classmates on the grounds of Luneta. Though I don’t remember what the homily was, I vividly remember the feeling of being blessed and enveloped in love and happiness for the sheer pleasure of being in the presence of a real man of God. I am so fortunate to have participated in that World Youth Day.

I envy those who were given the chance of paying respects as his remains lie on the altar of the Vatican. I wished I could touch or share part of his great vibe, emanating even in death.

A Wedding Like No Other

And so they were wed amidst the fanfare, pomp and adoration accorded to them by the world at large. Many stayed glued to their television screens Friday morning (night here in the Philippines) to watch, some in awe, some in incredulity, some in distaste for the grandeur being footed by the British people (but curious nonetheless). All eyes were on the commoner as she snagged her rightful place in the arms of her prince. Sigh, of course it was fairytale at best. Who in their right minds would not want such a glamorous and almost worry-free life (for the commoner me at least, who worries about bills and whatnots every week)?

Me, I just wished that particular moment that I could walk down the aisle again wearing that classy and elegant gown by Sarah Burton. Kate got some flak for donning a gown as simple as that. But really, it was so…her. And while I love Princess Diana to death, when I knew her as a young girl, often times ogling over how eerily gorgeous she was, the gown the late Princess chose was not one for the books. The poufy look would become so passe as time went by, whereas Kate’s so timeless, she would not cringe years from now when she pores over her wedding albums. Oh well, Diana’s beauty never seems to fade anyhow despite her passing away some 13(?) years ago.