These are a few of my favorite things

Or rather, my daughter’s.

She has recently discovered the joy of Chicken Joy (and no, I am not advertising Jollibee). I could leave her (at home in the kitchen table) with properly sliced bits of chicken, and she would have gone to CJ heaven. But really, it just baffles me how kids become so into Jollibee and its products. Maybe it’s the jolly-ness it projects, and all that greasy goodness. Oh well, a little cholesterol once in a while couldn’t hurt.

I am glad to say that, though she experiences surges of picky eating, her diet is well-balanced. She still has her milk about two to three times a day, and eats solid food at almost the same frequency. She has not gained much weight since she turned two, but as I have mentioned before, she is not at all sickly (thank you Lord!). She, however, seems to be rapidly growing (another thank you!) vertically. At least, if there is one thing she will not inherit from moi, it would be height.

Anyway, she also has her favorites as the next person. Some of the foolproof things to offer her (in no particular order) so that I can have that few precious minutes of peaceful eating myself:

She seems to take to a lot of sweet and sour food ‘no?

Just because

I felt like being the superstar wife, mother and daughter last Saturday. Ako na! Ako na ang domestic! lol. Maybe it has something to do with wanting to take away the stress at work so I kept my hands and mind sooo busy. Or I was plain happy to be with my kid (as always). Or maybe it was because for the first time in weeks, my whole family was complete after Mama and Dad have been attending to my sick aunt in Manila during weekends. Whatever. I was just glad to be home.

Aside from the laundry, a lot of tidying up, and providing about three-fourths of my attention to the toddler at hand, much of the weekend was spent slaving over the hot stove, and whipping up not-so-usual fares for the family. I missed pottering around in “my” kitchen when we used to live on our own (I will have more of these kitchen jobs soon). But for now, I did what I had to do in my mom’s lair.

Pasta with shrimp in olive oil
Shrimp and garlic pasta in oil
Hungarian sausage pasta
Hungarian sausage pasta
Fish tempura
Fish tempura
Marble potatoes
Marble potatoes

Got inspiration from the net, of course. After this, I promise to do more cooking at home.


Yes!! Finally!! We broke ground yesterday. I have previously ranted and agonized here and here about the delay of project home. But now, we are celebrating that things are finally rolling. There are still rough patches with the developer but we are just glad that we are seeing some progress. We even decided, on the spot, to skip a few hours of work as soon as the contractor called to say they will do the buhos. I am thankful I have a VERY demanding, but understanding boss 🙂

We passed by the site yesterday morning, bringing along the kid and my parents, before coming to work just so we could witness as the the first blobs of the mixture of cement and gravel hit the ground. I do not think that either of us has an ounce of Chinese blood in our bodies nor are we a superstitious couple, but we consulted people and our elders, about rituals. We did away with the killing of chicken and smearing of fresh blood (who still does this??), but we said a lot prayers, and threw in coins, rice and salt all over the foundation. These were simple acts but very significant to our family as they signify another milestone of our family’s life. Our happiness right is beyond words right now. It even rained and we felt even more blessed by the good Lord.

Mini me

Been browsing through albums again, and I can’t help but grin widely as I look at Mischa’s and my likeness (sorry stage mother lang haha). She looks so much like me when I was her age, we are almost indistinguishable. I often tell her, although I know she couldn’t understand it yet, that there is hope yet for her pango (flat) nose. I think mine filled out nicely as I grew up.

When I showed Mischa the pictures, and asked her who were in those, she proudly says “It’s Mischa!”. And then I would tell her, “No, it’s Mommy when she was younger.” And she would retort back, “No, it is Mischa!”.

I rest my case. But I have to say my daughter is way prettier than me. I just hope she doesn’t take after my height.

See for yourself.

Mommy, some thirty odd years ago:

Mischa now:

Spouting fangs

That letting go of some steam and firmly staking my claim felt really good. It was actually so out of character for me but I felt I had to do it, right here, right now. Gotta assert authority now, no more soft spots, more iron clad. We’ve gone long past the adjustment period. I don’t really want to do this but everybody just got my hackles up. I have no sense of doing some power tripping but it is time to bare my teeth.

How to do the grocery

Do you ever have that feeling of wanting to hug or hit someone at the same time?

Or wanting to be with or be away from someone?

You know I uberly love it when weekends roll around. I always couldn’t wait to spend that much stress busting time with my favorite person in the world–the mighty Mischa! Sometimes I feel like I would do anything just to be with her all time, including my chores and my errands.

But sometimes happiness and exasperation become a really weird combination when you decide to let your toddler tag along in your errands. You end up with white hair trying to calm all that energy down, but still, you look at her lovingly as you marvel and gush at how curious and grown up she is now.

50 Rules for Dads of Daughters

Read this a couple of times online, and wanted to post it here. It got me teary-eyed the first time I came across it. Truthfully, my dad and I don’t have that wonderful, feel-good emotional bond, maybe because he and I weren’t together during my formative years. I am not really sure if I have ever written about it here on my blog, but just so I record it, we didn’t have much of a “relationship” because I spent babyhood and toddlerhood in the loving care of my grandparents, then he had to leave for the Middle East during my pre-school and early elementary years. While we have a functional father-daughter relationship (so sorry to seem so emotionless about it), in the sense that he was a good provider, but truthfully, I didn’t ever feel that warm, secure, melt-your-heart kind of feeling.

I really can’t complain though. I’ve long accepted that little fact of our lives. I’m just really happy that my daughter is having a whole different experience now. Maybe it’s another reason why I am now overcompensating on how I am bringing up my own kid. I really, really want her to grow up feeling loved and secure, and that she can always come to us whether she feels like it–happy times, bad times. I hope that my husband take everything in this article to heart. There is nothing more important to me than living each day, and seeing the two of them love and care for each other.

50 Rules for Dads of Daughters by Michael Mitchell

1. Love her mom. Treat her mother with respect, honor, and a big heaping spoonful of public displays of affection. When she grows up, the odds are good she’ll fall in love with and marry someone who treats her much like you treated her mother. Good or bad, that’s just the way it is. I’d prefer good.

2. Always be there. Quality time doesn’t happen without quantity time. Hang out together for no other reason than just to be in each other’s presence. Be genuinely interested in the things that interest her. She needs her dad to be involved in her life at every stage. Don’t just sit idly by while she add years to her… add life to her years.

3. Save the day. She’ll grow up looking for a hero. It might as well be you. She’ll need you to come through for her over and over again throughout her life. Rise to the occasion. Red cape and blue tights optional.

4. Savor every moment you have together. Today she’s crawling around the house in diapers, tomorrow you’re handing her the keys to the car, and before you know it, you’re walking her down the aisle. Some day soon, hanging out with her old man won’t be the bees knees anymore. Life happens pretty fast. You better cherish it while you can.

5. Pray for her. Regularly. Passionately. Continually.

6. Buy her a glove and teach her to throw a baseball. Make her proud to throw like a girl… a girl with a wicked slider.

7. She will fight with her mother. Choose sides wisely.

8. Go ahead. Buy her those pearls.

9. Of course you look silly playing peek-a-boo. You should play anyway.

10. Enjoy the wonder of bath time.

11. There will come a day when she asks for a puppy. Don’t over think it. At least one time in her life, just say, “Yes.”

12. It’s never too early to start teaching her about money. She will still probably suck you dry as a teenager… and on her wedding day.

13. Make pancakes in the shape of her age for breakfast on her birthday. In a pinch, donuts with pink sprinkles and a candle will suffice.

14. Buy her a pair of Chucks as soon as she starts walking. She won’t always want to wear matching shoes with her old man.

15. Dance with her. Start when she’s a little girl or even when she’s a baby. Don’t wait ‘til her wedding day.

16. Take her fishing. She will probably squirm more than the worm on your hook. That’s OK.

17. Learn to say no. She may pitch a fit today, but someday you’ll both be glad you stuck to your guns.

18. Tell her she’s beautiful. Say it over and over again. Someday an animated movie or “beauty” magazine will try to convince her otherwise.

19. Teach her to change a flat. A tire without air need not be a major panic inducing event in her life. She’ll still call you crying the first time it happens.

20. Take her camping. Immerse her in the great outdoors. Watch her eyes fill with wonder the first time she sees the beauty of wide open spaces. Leave the iPod at home.

21. Let her hold the wheel. She will always remember when daddy let her drive.

22. She’s as smart as any boy. Make sure she knows that.

23. When she learns to give kisses, she will want to plant them all over your face. Encourage this practice.

24. Knowing how to eat sunflower seeds correctly will not help her get into a good college. Teach her anyway.

25. Letting her ride on your shoulders is pure magic. Do it now while you have a strong back and she’s still tiny.

26. It is in her nature to make music. It’s up to you to introduce her to the joy of socks on a wooden floor.

27. If there’s a splash park near your home, take her there often. She will be drawn to the water like a duck to a puddle.

28. She will eagerly await your return home from work in the evenings. Don’t be late.

29. If her mom enrolls her in swim lessons, make sure you get in the pool too. Don’t be intimidated if there are no other dads there. It’s their loss.

30. Never miss her birthday. In ten years she won’t remember the present you gave her. She will remember if you weren’t there.

31. Teach her to roller skate. Watch her confidence soar.

32. Let her roll around in the grass. It’s good for her soul. It’s not bad for yours either.

33. Take her swimsuit shopping. Don’t be afraid to veto some of her choices, but resist the urge to buy her full-body beach pajamas.

34. Somewhere between the time she turns three and her sixth birthday, the odds are good that she will ask you to marry her. Let her down gently.

35. She’ll probably want to crawl in bed with you after a nightmare. This is a good thing.

36. Few things in life are more comforting to a crying little girl than her father’s hand. Never forget this.

37. Introduce her to the swings at your local park. She’ll squeal for you to push her higher and faster. Her definition of “higher and faster” is probably not the same as yours. Keep that in mind.

38. When she’s a bit older, your definition of higher and faster will be a lot closer to hers. When that day comes, go ahead… give it all you’ve got.

39. Holding her upside down by the legs while she giggles and screams uncontrollably is great for your biceps. WARNING: She has no concept of muscle fatigue.

40. She might ask you to buy her a pony on her birthday. Unless you live on a farm, do not buy her a pony on her birthday. It’s OK to rent one though.

41. Take it easy on the presents for her birthday and Christmas. Instead, give her the gift of experiences you can share together.

42. Let her know she can always come home. No matter what.

43. Remember, just like a butterfly, she too will spread her wings and fly some day. Enjoy her caterpillar years.

44. Write her a handwritten letter every year on her birthday. Give them to her when she goes off to college, becomes a mother herself, or when you think she needs them most.

45. Learn to trust her. Gradually give her more freedom as she gets older. She will rise to the expectations you set for her.

46. When in doubt, trust your heart. She already does.

47. When your teenage daughter is upset, learning when to engage and when to back off will add years to YOUR life. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

48. Ice cream covers over a multitude of sins. Know her favorite flavor.

49. This day is coming soon. There’s nothing you can do to be ready for it. The sooner you accept this fact, the easier it will be.

50. Today she’s walking down the driveway to get on the school bus. Tomorrow she’s going off to college. Don’t blink.