Pasko 2012

I woke up tired on the 24th because of the travel from Makati to Bulacan to Bataan the day before. I do not regret going to my cousin’s wedding and my niece’s dedication in Malolos though! I loved that the event was elegant yet casual. Ang sarap makakita ng couple na alam kong nagmamahalan talaga. Ang sarap rin ng may bagong inaanak lalo na kasing cute ng inaanak ko. At shempre pa, ang sarap ng pagkain sa Kulinarya Tisa, win ang pastel de lengua! Congrats and best wishes, Kuya Edmund and Herchell! Be dedicated to Jesus forever, Baby Alfa!

{with Lola na super bata with her jetblack hair / with one of my favorite couples / yiheee kissy!!! / with Alfa cutie patootie}

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I got my heart trampled on a couple of hours before the Christmas Eve Mass. God sent encouragement through an unexpected person. :p Sorry God for the brief moment of letting my heartache snatch the attention that’s supposed to be for Jesus’ very special day, and thank You for using my bestfriend as an instrument of Your unfailing love for me. 🙂

The message was this:

“Your most profound and intimate experiences of worship will likely be in your darkest days- when your heart is broken, when you feel abandoned, when you’re out of options, when the pain is great- and you turn to God alone.” – Rick Warren

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We didn’t have Noche Buena in Lola’s house because the family gathering was moved to Christmas afternoon. We found out the itself so we only had a short time to prepare. We had only 4 kinds of food but it was just right for us… hello, tatlong piraso lang kami sa pamilya! We had ham with honey glaze, Pinoy spaghetti (with lots of hotdogs and mushrooms), ice cream (Coffee Crumble and Cookies & Cream), and butterscotch! Saraaap! Ang lakas nga maka-children’s birthday party ng handa namin, ‘no? But sabi nga ni daddy, fitting naman daw kasi birth daw ni Baby Jesus. Oo nga naman!


{Merry Christmas from our family to yours… Malayo man kayo, malayo rin kami! Hehehe!}

Pero sa totoo lang, mas bet ko ‘yung food namin ng Christmas lunch… ‘yung nirequest ko na bulanglang (bunga ng malunggay + kamote + fish + bagoong), rigadillo, lechon paksiw, minatamis na saging… kaya naman ako nasasabihan ng mga kamag-anak ko na MALUSOG. :p Thank you Lord for the bountiful blessings! 😀

—–

Spent Christmas day waiting for my godchildren, nephews and nieces to visit me at home. The first kids that visited me were- my nieces Michaella and Madison. The little girls were accompanied by their parents Ate Ching and Kuya Shawn. They are very lucky to have such adorable daughters! I’m kinda bummed that I won’t be able to see them again before they go back to Greece end of this month. 😦

My other cute pamangkins Reese, Sean, Verene and Seth also came to visit. We saw the rest of the kids in the afternoon when we went to the beach for our clan’s get together.


{kengkoyan time with Ate Ching, Mica and Madie}

There were lots of food in the get together. Our contribution was my Mama’s specialty suman sa lihiya (that she made with the help of Tita Nida, and si Daddy ang pinagsungkit niya ng niyog at pinakuha ng dahon ng saging na pambalot, hahaha). There’s also puto with anise, cuchinta, lechon, chopseuy, menudo, dinuguan (my favorite), pansit malabon, fruit salad and lots of buco.

There were a lot of kids that attended the party becauseof the games. The event was spearheaded by my cousin Mafi and her hubby Jeric. Ako ang official photographer na taga-upload agad ng pics sa Facebook for the benefit of our relatives abroad that we miss so much  and sana makasama namin next Christmas!!! The games for the kiddies were basagang palayok, facedive sa flour, sack race, ang walang kamatayang Bring Me, and patagalan ng Merry Christmaaaaaaasssssss. There was also videoke for the kids at heart. :p


{with my nephew Rion / pabitin aka the hang-game nyahahaha / with my pudrakels, mudrakels, and grannygoose / cutie maddie!!!}

So obviously (and thankfully), YES is the answer if you ask me if I had a merry Christmas. I hope yours was merry, too. 🙂

—–

listening to: Wham! – Last Christmas

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Monsoon Del Rosario

Sorry for the late post. I guess it’s pretty evident by now that I have been neglecting this blog. Work still pretty much eats most of my time and it was exceptionally draining on the week that an unnamed weather disturbance hit Metro Manila and the nearby provinces.

Let’s just call it Monsoon Del Rosario. Only people born in the 80’s/earlier will be able to relate. It wasn’t as scary as Milenyo or as devastating as Ondoy but it was definitely something!!! It’s the first time I experienced making a decision not to go to work because I might not make it back home alive and the first time I experienced work being suspended by Malacanang even for private sectors.

Ate B and I stayed home and had a romantic lunch by default. Brownout kasi. We cooked whatever was left in the fridge. We couldn’t even go to the nearest supermarket because of the ankle-high floods we were most likely to encounter in St. Paul and Pasong Tamo.

image{chef’s salad, caramelized onions with baguio beans, lucban longanisa… toshi bear as lunch guest}

Nung nagka-ilaw na, we watched the news and felt pretty grateful that we were dry, safe and warm. What happened in some cities was heartbreaking, especially in Quezon City and Marikina. We hoped that the next day would have less rain contrary to the weather forecast.

It wasn’t raining so hard on Wednesday morning so I went to work. It was still flooded in some parts of Buendia but I was hopeful that it would subside by afternoon because the sun had started to come out. Paasa lang pala. By lunchtime, there was a crazy downpour again. We were sent home by our boss. It was a struggle going home because it was already flooded in Taft-Buendia. I just told myself to brave the waters because the level was nothing compared to that of Fairview or Malibay.

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{view from our LRT Buendia recruitment hub}

By Thursday, the weather was significantly better. Haring Araw was welcomed with tears of joy by a lot of people. I was happy because kailangan ko nang maglaba at makapagpatuyo ng mga labada. AND I wanted to go home to Bataan.

Daddy discouraged me from going home because there was no electricity in our town. But I didn’t care. I was desperate to see my parents and to eat suman. :p

So I went home and spent the weekend indoors. Didn’t need an electric fan because the air there is cool and fresh. (Plus, it still rained in Morong. Fat, scary raindrops but it didn’t bother me because I was home.) Didn’t need television because I brought lots of reading materials (Nat Geo, food magazine and Garfield). All I needed was internet. Thank you Smart for the fast connection! And thank you self for buying a portable charger and extra batteries.

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{what the side of our house looks like when it’s raining… probinsyang-probinsya noh?}

I was supposed to stay home until Tuesday morning but a typhoon was approaching the PAR. Mama told me it’s wise I go back to Manila instead of staying home, eating everything in our kitchen and end up being stranded in Morong, missing more work.

Daddy cooked breakfast and made oil lamps to illuminate our dining room. Niiiice.

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{breakfast habang brownout sa bahay c/o daddy…pati mga lampara siya ang gumawa}

Aside from the blessing of being safe with my family, this monsoon made 2 people reach out to me. They asked if my parents were okay. I think they saw in the news about Bataan being flooded. Our town is far from that area. But I’m glad that even if I am not (?) friends with them anymore, they still managed to remember me or at least the people I love.

What was YOUR monsoon experience?

—–

listening to: Carly Rae Jepsen & Owl City – Good Time

Morong Weekend – June 2012

Spent last weekend with my parents and Ambo, the country’s first weather disturbance this 2012. Not fond of a dripping sky but because I was feeling lethargic since Friday, the heavy rain and chilling winds made my stay at home much nicer. The couch and I were almost inseparable. What’s good about lying down on that sofa is that it’s right beside the window where I can smell the fragrant suha (pomelo) blossoms from the frontyard. Look at these pretty flowers!

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Before I proceed to food and chismis, lemme just share this cute convo I had with my Dad the morning before I left Manila for Bataan.

Daddy: Anak, manonood ka ba ng BSB concert? Peyborits mo sila di’ba?
Me: Hindi. Uuwi ako d’yan ngayon eh.
Daddy: ‘Di bale. Kakantahan ka na lang namin ni Mama mo.

They didn’t get to sing Quit Playing Games With My Heart for me and it was more than okay because well… my parents can’t sing for shit. Hindi ko ‘yan namana sa kanila because I have a wonderful singing voice. *kidlat kulog* Hihihi. :p We watched dvds (Sherlock Homes: A Game of Shadows and Joyful Noise) and snacked on indian mangoes from our backyard. We read books– Neil Gaiman for me, Bo Sanchez for Mama, and Rick Warren for Daddy. We cooked tortang talong, embutido, and my favorite poor man’s nilaga. I call it poor man’s nilaga because instead of using beef shanks/celery/cabbage/corn, we use pork ribs/pechay/potato/camote. I like it because the camote makes the broth thick and sweet! At natawa ako kay Mama na obvious na matagal nang hindi nakapagluto nito…

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Mama: Gaano kadaming saging at gabi ang isasama natin dito?
Me: Saging at gabi? Ginatan ba ang lulutuin naten?!?!
Daddy: May binili pa nga ‘yang labanos eh!
Mama: Akala ko kasi sinigang ang irerequest nitong anak mong matakaw!!!

Ang ending, minatamis na lang ni Mama ang gabi, saging at yung ibang camote. Btw, there was no available yellow camote. We had the violet variety, it’s not the ube that is used for halaya. It’s not as sweet as the yellow. Had I known, I would have let her put banana in the nilaga. Anyway, the nilaga still turned out to be delicious. Kasarap with sawsawan na patis na pinigaan ng calamansi at tinirisan ng sili! Over lunch, my parents asked about my friends and I told them about Jap’s bday and our plan to go out of town or out of the country. Chinismis Chinika ko na rin yung iba pang mga exciting na mga ganap sa buhay nila. And then Daddy asked about *insert my exboyfriend’s name here*

Daddy: Kumusta na si _______?
Mama: Naku naman, Dad! Hindi na sila nag-uusap ng anak mo!
Me: Oo nga, Daddy. Huli ka na sa balita.
Daddy: Isali niyo kasi ako ‘pag nagchichismisan kayo!!!
LOL

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Moments with my parents are golden! I wasn’t blessed to have siblings but it’s okay because God gave me super loving and super awesome parents. 🙂 I am very very grateful. I know I’ve said this several times here in my blog. This isn’t also the first time that I posted a picture of them holding hands, while walking to the church. The only time I left the house was when we went to Our Lady of The Pillar Church. It was a rainy Sunday morning. I was busy texting so they walked ahead of me. Thus, I had another chance to take a picture of them and get all kilig.

After mass, Daddy went to Pangasinan for Lola Meling’s 40 Days, and when he came back last night, he had a bagful of shrimps (suahe) for us. Yummy! Fave namin ‘yon ni Mama. After dinner, we looked at old pictures. They laughed at me for looking like a boy when I was just a few months old. Harharhar.

It’s always good to be home. 🙂

—–

listening to: Paul McCartney – Maybe I’m Amazed

Holiday Break 2011

This is my first post for the year and I’d like to talk about the last week of 2011.

I’m still hungover from my loooong vacation in Bataan. I spent 9 days with my family and that length is already a huge deal for me because I don’t get to be home every month.

My Christmas break was spent eating (a lot), sleeping (a lot), joking with my parents, visiting the beach with my cousins, reading The Power by Rhonda Byrne, and thanking God for the numerous blessings He has been showering me and my loved ones.

Here are some of the pictures from my simple yet meaningful stay in Morong from December 24 to January 2.

The Nuestra Señora del Pilar church of Poblacion, Morong, Bataan. This is where we went for mass on Christmas Eve and New Year’s morn.

Elmer, Ate Bel, Therese and I in front of the belen. Yes, eh baket? sa gusto naming mag-pose sa harap. 😛

With Father Gerry Jorge, parish priest. He spearheaded the Angel Tree Project with the goal of giving gift baskets to the 100 less fortunate families of our town.

With my goddaughter/niece Reese and her brother Sean. They visited me Christmas morning. The traditional “pangluluhod” aka aguinaldo time.

My cousin Gerald celebrated his 19th birthday the day before Christmas. I loved the pansit bihon and barbecue. I also got one of the flowers from the cake. Hehehe.

After eating, we watched Praybeyt Benjamin. Naglabas ng projector at screen si Gerald. Ayos, di’ba? :p

Daddy celebrated his 62nd birthday on the 29th. Thank you God for giving me a pogi, loving and superkind Daddy.

After lunch, we watched Enteng ng Ina Mo because it’s our yearly tradition to watch at least one MMFF entry. Then we went to the newly opened SM Olongapo and the jampacked Royal Duty Free.

Media Noche consisted of spicy tuna pasta, 14 fruits, red wine, ham, special macaroni soup, veggie stirfry, rice, lotus cream buchi, sapin-sapin, suman and bread with balsamic vinegar. And also our new favorite dulce de leche ice cream. Busog!!!

I went back to Manila carrying lots of pictures and happy memories from my Christmas vacation. =)

Happy New Year! I wish all your prayers get answered this year!

—–

listening to: Rock Sugar – Shook Me Like a Prayer

Belated Happy Easter!

I went home to Bataan for the Holy Week break. The night before I did, the s.o. of one of my colleagues gave us a basketful of Easter treats.

Thanks Tim for the chocolate eggs, jelly beans and mallow chicks!

It’s true. There’s nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

—–

Good Friday was just spent at home. I finished reading American Gods and started with My Daily Bread. I also stuffed my face with home cooked food and sari-sari store-bought junk.

We grilled some eggplant, fish, squid and porkchop. We also had some burong mangga and freshly picked indian mangoes.

Peanuts, candied beans, chocnut and ube-langka candies for merienda.

I have no right to get pissed for gaining 3lbs over the break.

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Went to Mafi’s afternoon of Black Saturday. I will always be thankful that we live so close to the beach.

Despite the sad things going through my mind, I was happy and carefree that moment. Obvious naman sa picture, di’ba? Hehehe.

Eto pa. vanity shot naman.

—–

Had to go back to Manila right after Easter mass and lunch.

My bunnykids (Joko and Kwe) and I changed our profile pics in fb to our Happy Bunny pic of choice.

This is what I chose:

This was in line with my week-long LSS of Daft Punk’s Digital Love.

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But wait, there’s more! (lol how unoriginal) I found out from our parish priest that Pope John Paul II held mass at the Vietnamese refugee camp in our town 30 years ago. How cool is that? 🙂

A shrine for him will be inaugurated on May 2 at the former Philippine Refugee Processing Center (PRPC) – now Bataan Technology Park, Inc. (BTPI).

And with that, let me end my Easter 2011 post with a quote from the soon to be beatified Pope.

“Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song.”
~ Pope John Paul II

BELATED HAPPY EASTER, EVERYONE!

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listening to: The National – So far Around the Bend

Happy 2011!

Here are some pictures of my blissful 1st day of the new year:

Nothing to say, except I really enjoyed because of my 3 favorites: my family, the beach and well… vanity. *sings* Bagong taon ay magcamwhoring na nang lumigaya ang ating bayan! LOL

Hahaha!

Happy 2011, everyone! Enjoy!

—–

listening to: stories about sink holes

Greetings from Bataan

I haven’t been blogging ‘coz I’ve been busy spending time with my family. So far, this is the longest vacay (9 days!!!)  I’ve had and the most fun, too. 🙂

What have I been doing? Of course, what an ordinary vacationing hardworking girl does! Eat, hang, sleep, repeat! :p

Here are some pics from my Bataan vacay.

after the Christmas Eve mass with my cousins

after Noche Buena with cousins, tito and tita and lola

with my favorite cousins Ate Bel and Mafi =)

with my inaanak/pamangkin Breng

Christmas afternoon! Beach with my little cousins! Yipee!

an Absolut cheers to an awesome Christmas

Bataan Christmas sunset

dramang Tabing Ilog sa may Canauan

Fun times!!!

hanging at the hanging bridge

Daddy’s 61st birthday lunch @ Max’s

 

Daddy and Mama doing the wacky :p

That’s it. Lunch is ready. Nag-ihaw ng fishy and porky sila Mama. Back to vacay mode. 🙂

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

—–

listening to: kids playing

Simple Things I Love About Home

After almost 2 months of not seeing my parents, I got to file for VL and I went home to Bataan 2 weekends ago. I realized that things are very different now compared to what we had when we still lived in BF. There are a few things, however, that remain constant and I am very grateful to these things…

Mama never fails to forget the food I would like to eat whenever I’d go home.

She cooked pork sinigang with gabi and halabos na hipon for me. Daddy would always joke that he gets to eat a lot whenever I am there. Nagpapakitang gilas. :p We also opted to “eat out” literally. As in sa may gilid ng dirty kitchen namin. Katabi ng mga puno like buko, mangga, saging, suha, etc. Al fresco kung al fresco. Presko talaga ang hangin sa probinsya.

They also had special suman sa lihiya made for me. This is the only suman I enjoy eating. Childhood favorite ko ito.

I always go to Mafi’s house when I’m in Morong. My cousin’s house is nearer the beach and that’s where my closest cousins and I prefer to drink or pig out.

I wasn’t in the mood to drink because our poison that night was Zinfandel and Blackberry Merlot. For some reason, I wanted Red Horse or The Bar, but I was too lazy to get beer from the sari-sari store, but I was not too lazy to eat Tita Linda’s luto.

Chicken adobo, adobong pusit, hotdogs, garlic mushrooms and Coke! Walang diet-diet ‘pag nasa probinsya!

My niece/goddaughter Reese always tags along. I have been teaching her how to eat barbecue sa kalye. So far, so good. She’s becoming matakaw like her Tita Ninang Iya Ganda. (Sampalin ko ang kokontra sa tawag niya sa akin.)

I make it a point to not go back to Manila without eating Pho (25php) and Ban Mhi (30php). Hello? Magkano sa Wabi-Sabi ‘yan, diba?

Another must when I’m home is attending mass. Look how sweet my mama and daddy are. HHSSWW!!! Holding hands, may pa-swing-swing pa while walking!!!

Ma and Dad made sure that I wouldn’t go back to Manila without eating my other favorites. For brekky, we had tuyo, sinangag with lots of garlic, fried egg and coffee with lots of Coffee Mate and muscovado sugar. Just the way I likey. Mama also cooked tapa but I didn’t have any.

For lunch, more hipon, kilawing labong (bamboo shoots cooked in vinegar) and fried tanigue.

I miss the life we had in BF, but I’m glad we brought the excellent food and massive love in Bataan.

I can’t wait to go home again! Mama said she’ll make lumpiang hubad, adobong spareribs and garlic alimasag for me!

—–

listening to: Tavares – Heaven Must Be Missing an Angel

Bataan for Holy Week

Today is my 2nd day here in Bataan. Hence, day 2 of family, good food, and introspection.

May the holy week be as positively eventful to you as it is to me. 🙂

—–

listening to: crashing waves

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