Ada’s first birthday

It was another first birthday celebration for us last weekend. This time, it was our neighbor, Baby Ada’s birthday. They live right across from us, and they are the closest (figuratively) to our family so far. At the moment, we like them better than the ones beside us, but who knows in the future. We like how they seem to mind our house, especially our plants and utility bills (when they’re just left by messengers), when we are not home. And Mischa likes to play with their three-year old elder son, Coco. We also almost always pass food to each other for sharing.

So we trooped to the Mall of Asia to be with Ada on her special, and was glad to see other neighbors (all from our street) at the party. Now I am pressured to have them too when we baptize the little on still in my tummy. lol

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Current favorite tambayan

I posted here how Mischa discovered her love for the outdoors. The park where she used to go is about five blocks from ours, in the village phase before ours. Thank God a new one was recently built in our own neighborhood. So during that short Christmas break when we were all at home, she developed the habit of riding her bicycle every afternoon to play there.

Being a solo child, she is used to playing alone, but now she is beginning to enjoy playing with the other neighborhood kids. This is great as these will be the kids she will grow up and will fondly call kababata years from now.

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Village party

One of the parties we went to this holiday is the first one organized at our phase in the village. Since all of us are new (all of us transferred just in the last two years), it was fun to see most of our neighbors at last. If you go to our side of Citta Italia, our house is near the Phase 15 entrance, so we don’t normally get to see the rest of the residents except those in our own street. All in all, I think there are forty households now. I am glad someone in our phase (I will call him Mr. Jess) has taken up the cudgels in keeping everyone in the loop through e-mail, and spearheading this first get-together.

I would be the first one to tell you that I don’t normally go out and “socialize” with the neighbors regularly. Sure, I would greet, wave and smile at them when I see them, but I am much of a homebody and prefer to be inside the house than out and engaging in small talk. I’ve lived in three villages, not counting my childhood home in Batangas province, and I have been pretty much this way for the past thirty years. This trait I inherited from my mother who also kept to herself in our family home. In the second home where I moved in when we decided to get married, we stayed for a while with my brother-in-law’s mother, who in contrast spends the afternoons either in the steps of the house, or some of the neighbors’, doing chitchats.

So anyway, really, I am glad for this street party. Everybody seemed to be family. Since we are all new, nobody had to welcome nor join. It was everybody’s first time!

We all brought some food to share, and gifts to exchange. The older kids at the neighborhood did some intermission numbers. Some of the uncles and aunties also let the kids fall in line for their pamasko, which is usually money, candies or small tokens. I hope we can regularly have one of these even if it is not Christmastime.

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New wheels

We have been having a lot of car trouble of late despite shelling out quite a large sum for its maintenance just this summer. We got to face the fact that the car is old, and must be suffering from joint pains to probably diabetes, Parkinsons, high cholesterol levels, etc. Maybe one of these days, it will suffer a stroke and just break down in the middle of nowhere. It is time for it to retire. But the bottomline is: we can’t afford just yet to buy a new one.

However, I am glad someone got a new set of wheels last weekend (it was Fathers’ Day but the day still belonged to her).

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You don’t know how happy I am with this contraption. What a diversion from spending all her time indoors! Although very energetic, the little girl must have inherited from me the inclination to be a homebody and do things on our own. She would go out on our yard but will hardly venture when we try to take her out for a walk around the neighborhood. This bike will give her the opportunity to get fresh air instead of being cooped up inside the house, and see other kids at play. Though I don’t dream of her being outside all the time, it would do her a lot of good to be acquainted with and eventually be friends with these kids/

Enjoy, kiddo, but be careful.

Random walking

The draft of this post has been languishing for some time now. Been trying to finish but things always get in the way. Thought I had finally found the time but the toddler woke up so…

Anyway, this is about a random event that happened a few days ago. Tuesday morning didn’t start out two well for the hubby and I. We haven’t covered much ground yet when we were disturbed by a loud clanging of the car. Our hearts sank as we saw that it was a flat tire. We were already running a bit late, and the car was under the number coding scheme. Shoot! Then we had to SOS my dad, and call one of his reliable mechanic friends because the tire jack wasn’t even working.

Of all days to get a flat! Even if they did manage to change tires, we would not be able to run because it was running close to 7 am (the cut off time for the number coding). We realized we had to sit out a couple of hours and wait till the scheme lifts at midday.

The good thing, though, was that the incident happened only a few blocks away from the house. As soon as the men started working, I decided to walk home since I wouldn’t be of much use anyway. I was just standing there, starting to sweat, and letting whatever makeup I have on slowly melt in the rising sun. So off I went and began a quarter of an hour walking to home base through the side streets of our village.

As I trudged along, oddly enough, I was transported back to my childhood. While I didn’t spend my formative years here in Cavite (grew up under the care of grandparents in Batangas), I did spend the school age years with my parents until they day I moved in with hubby in 2008 before we got married. It just felt good and a little nostalgic as the transformation that has taken place in our own part of the universe unfolded before my eyes. The place looks old and new at the same time. I saw the renovations undergone by some of the villagers as they try to keep up with the times, while some houses retained the basic bungalow look they have sported since the 1980s. Passed by homes of former childhood friends, and wondered where they are now. Haven’t really kept in touch with them. Moving along, I watched as the streets stirred, and people began keeping pace with the rising of the sun. Fresh produce are out, enticing passersby to buy. Stores started to open with keepers bringing out their wares, and peddling them. Students and professionals were lining the streets, either briskly walking to their destinations or waiting for rides. Mommies and nannies with babies were basking in the sunlight. Retirees and exercise-enthusiasts were jogging or biking. Some were walking their dogs. It was a typical suburban day. There was no rush like those found in Manila or Makati, but people were purposely doing their own thing.

I reached our house in no time. I don’t know but this walk really gave me a lot of things to think about and to thank for. It made me appreciate again the good life my parents gave me, and the home, while not perfect, they created for me. I also thought about how the good Lord has put me where I am now. I might be searching for a lot of things but He knows that this is the right place I have to be at the moment. So I am going to make the best out of it.

Out on the street

Mico and I never had the chance to play on the street when we were kids. We were basically holed up all day, all night. Not that we envied the other kids playing. I, for one, was perfectly content staying indoors, keeping to myself, turning on either the television or the computer, or reading. I have my barbie dolls, books and other toys.

Our family was just like that, we mostly went on our merry ways without feeling the need to regularly converse with neighbors. When we want to play with other kids, either we invite them to our house or we go to their. Or we played to our hearts’ content in our schools–joining the patintero, luksong tinik, chinese garter, volleyball games, etc. We didn’t feel like we missed out on anything.

Nowadays, especially when the hubby and I are home, we let Mischa go out and smell the fresh air in our little village. Being cooped up all week will not do her any good. Not that she can actually “play” with the other bigger kids, but we let her go out so that she can watch the others run and chase each other around. She absolutely delights in this. Sometimes we let her run a little but I am forever in fear that she might stumble, and scrape her knees and legs. I know, I am such a stage mother! I know I should let her fall sometimes, it’s a life lesson even at this young age. I just couldn’t bear it if she got hurt.

Hay, she’s growing up so fast. Next thing I know she would always be asking for permission to go to be with her playmates.

a social call

yep, my little star got her first invitation to a birthday party of a 2-year old kid a few houses down. too bad our camera ran out of battery we didn’t get to take pictures during the party itself. i think she had fun watching all those kids running, and the festive air driving her senses wild. though she probably won’t remember all these a few years from now. i just know she so wanted to join all the fun games, and to partake of all that birthday goodness of spaghetti, chicken and hotdogs. and she was clutching the spongebob lootbag all the day way home. too bad mommy didn’t have as much fun because hubby left us after a while to go to a homeowners’ meeting. i’m having a bit of an inferiority complex because i feel that our neighbors haven’t quite accepted me to the fold yet, save for a few. not my loss hehe. they were all smiles towards mischa but nary a glance towards the mom. hmpf.