My ref and magnets

This blog is primarily to document everyday, run-of-the-mill happenings in my life. Sometimes I blog about deep things, sometimes I blog about something like this. Hahaha!

This is our ref door at home.

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Like most refs, ours have a hodge podge of reminders, important notices, pictures, and magnets. I am not an avid magnet collector but I like ref magnets. Although Iana has no picture on the front of the ref when I took this (she has a picture on the side), I think this photo basically sums me up.

This is a magnet from Wonder. Wonder is this tear-jerking book from RJ Palacio about a kid, August Pullman, who has a facial deformity and had to attend regular school for the first time in his life. (My name is August. I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.)

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These are by Fernando Zobel. Kahit na sabihin pang magnets lang ito, may Zobel artwork pa rin ako sa bahay! Walang basagan ng trip! Ang mambasag, nai-inggit lang!! Hahaha!

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This is my fave destination magnet. I got this more than a decade ago in New York (notice the tattered corners?) and until now tops my list. Maybe it’s because it was taken during twilight (which is my fave part of the day) or maybe because it’s New York (a city which induces a natural high), or maybe because it reminds me of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. which is like THE. BEST. SHOW. EVER. (And if you do not agree, please keep your opinion to yourself! HMPH! Hahaha! Joke!) Whatever the reason, it is my certainly my fave.

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My magnet collection also includes photo booth magnets from days of yore (este wedding coordination days), magnets which represent motherhood and breastfeeding, photo magnets, the souvenir magnet from Counterflow, etc.

Ang babaw pero ang saya ko tuwing nakikita ko ang ref ko. Feeling ko akong ako. 🙂 How does your ref looks like? Puro kung anu-ano rin ang nakalagay? 🙂

P.S. Whoever clicked the link to my deep things blog post, I hope you enjoyed my deep thoughts. Hahahaha!!!

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Wally, Lola N, and musings about married life

WARNING: R-18 for the first part! (But don’t worry, this article is not really just about Wally Bayola) 🙂

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I remember watching Wally Bayola’s video a couple of years back showing his intimate moments with a woman who was not his wife. I am not claiming to be a prude and truth be told, I have seen a couple of vids before that of the same nature. But that particular one was just too much for me and that was the video that made me swear never to watch another video of that nature again. I felt that those were two minutes of my life that I would never get back.

During the whole bruhaha following the release of that video, I learned through my FB news feed that his wife stood by him. Sobra akong bumilib! As in sobra! To forgive when your husband had an extra-marital affair is incredible but to do that when it seems like the whole world was watching and has seen your husband in a most intimate moment with another woman is, for me, amazing beyond words. That takes strength and courage and the will to face each day with your head held high.

Recently, because of the AlDub craze, I got a copy of Yes! magazine’s AlDub issue and they had a feature on Wally. I learned that earlier that year, before the video was leaked, one of Wally’s kids was diagnosed with a rare kind of cancer. Researching more, I learned that Wally’s wife knew of the affair, has actually talked to the girl involved, and the affair has ended even before the video went viral.

This — the whole Wally situation — made me realize so many things:

1. A marriage can surpass infidelity. I have seen couples who have separated because of infidelity but I have also seen some who were able to withstand it. One of my most fave quotes came from the movie The Vow. The mom learned of the dad’s cheating and yet stayed. When asked why, she answered, “I chose to stay with him for all the things he’s done right; not the one thing he’s done wrong. I chose to forgive him.” I hope I do not get tested but if I would be, I hope I can have the strength to forgive.

2. Forgiveness is possible. I believe that it is a God-given grace so it is with God that it can be given. I did not believe in this before but recently, a fellow N@Wie lost her husband and she was able to forgive the person who caused the accident. Na-amaze ako. Ang galing, ang galing. Kung hindi ba naman grace from God ang forgiveness, ewan ko na lang.

3. As important or probably more important as forgiveness from others is forgiveness of oneself. I read this from Mandy Hale: Dwelling on past bad decisions you’ve made only allows those decisions to keep defining you. Forgive yourself and move on.

4. There are much more difficult things than facing infidelity. I am not undermining spouses who have suffered through their husband or wife’s infidelity. Hindi talaga. Ang hirap hirap nun. But to go through a child’s cancer, I think, is a more difficult trial.

5. Going through a hardship together makes a relationship stronger. The adage “What does not kill you makes you stronger” is indeed true.

6. Amidst trials, you would realize what is most important in life.

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Marriage is hard work. Oh, it is fun, yes. It is beautiful, yes. It is also hard work. In the course of married life, fights, arguments, trials, hurts will happen. Pero ganun talaga. Pipiliin lang talaga ang pagpapatawad at pagmamahal araw araw.

Sobra akong bilib sa asawa ni Wally. I am in awe of her. I am not privy to their private life but I am hoping that they are doing well. Sabi nga ni Lola Nidora, “May mga pagsubok sa daan pero ‘yan ang magpapatamis ng mga biyayang makakamtan.” At sana ang pagsubok na ito ay totoong nakapagpatamis sa kanilang biyayang nakakamtan sa ngayon.

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Toilet Paper Roll Cars

After weeks of the whole family staying at home because of illnesses, Jia finally went back to school and J went back to the office. This means that Joya and I are left at home (with Iana, of course). This morning, Joya has been feeling his Ate’s absence and wanted to do something with the toilet rolls that I have been collecting. To release his creativity, we did toilet paper roll cars. We had so much fun and I am happy to realize that when asked to get things, Joya can now remember up to three things. I was actually gunning for four but Joya pointed out to me that the fourth thing was just beside me. Haha! Because Joya tends to not focus on stuff, this is a small victory for me! Yay!

Joya did much of the work. Anything that did not involve the cutter was done by him. He was even the one who cut the number sign circles using his scissors.

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Our toilet paper roll cars! Tadaaaah!!!!

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Another proof that kids do not need expensive toys. 🙂

tissue paper roll cars

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Crush vs. Love

sign by mockingbirdprimitive

sign by mockingbirdprimitive

I feel that one of the best things I can give my kids is the security that their parents have a good marriage. This, I believe, will also prepare them and direct them to have good marriages when they grow up. A couple of weeks ago, as we were preparing for bed, the kids asked me to tell them the story of how their Dad and I met. So I told them about J and I –  how we first met, how we became friends, and how we ended up together. After my story, Joya said , “Ohhhh!!! Friends who fell in love!” His eyes were sparkling and he looked so happy, I almost laughed out loud. I told them that it is better to be married to someone who is also a friend. Of course, whenever I say something about love and marriage, I end it up with “when you’re already an adult” or something similar (mahirap na! haha!). Minsan, lalagyan ko pa ng numerical age (“Yes, you can get married when you are 35 years old.”). Hahaha!

Jia, all 7 years old and 4 months and 3 feet 11 inches of her looking serious, said, “Mommy, I am confused. You said that falling in love is for adults. You see, I have a crush. The way I thought of it, a crush is something that hits you immediately [instantly] and then you have a crush on that person while love is something that takes a long time to develop. But you say that falling in love is for adults. I was thinking that since I have a crush on this person for a few years now, that it is has now developed to love and I am now falling in love with him. But if love is just for adults… I am confused….” She trailed off.

Okay, I have to admit that I had to breathe a little deeper than normal and I had to say “Hmmmmmmm” and “Ahhhhh” for a long time to be able to stall and think of how best to answer her. Hahahaha!!!

I told her that, indeed, love takes a long time to develop and yes, it is for adults, and then in a stroke of near genius that only happens to me once every few years (kasi usually tapos na yung pangyayari pag nakaisip ako ng magandang solusyon! Haha!), I remembered an FB viral post I saw about crushes and the “Love is patient, Love is kind” verse of 1 Corinthians 13. I told Jia that there is a simple test on how to see if what an adult is feeling is love or is just crush (yeah, sinabi ko na “what an ADULT is feeling” para klaro) but that she can also do the “test”. Ay, ang anak ko, dahil sa Montessori nag-aaral, excited sa salitang “test”! Haha! But since it was already late and I refused to do the test that night, she made me promise she’ll have the test the following day.

Day of the “Test”

I started by showing her 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Then I explained to her that before she can take the test to see if what she is feeling is love, she has to see first if the other person deserves to be loved. Oh, Jia was so excited! I told her that to know if the person deserves to be loved, all she had to do was to substitute the the word “love” with the name of the person and to see if the statement still holds true. If it does, then the person deserves her love when she is an adult.

Jia refused to take the test with me (I asked her to read it aloud.) and said she would do it by herself. I knew the exact moment the person “failed” the test (and I think I was able to hide my look of glee pretty well). Jia’s face looked crushed for about two seconds and then promptly recovered. I think she understood the wisdom of the test… plus it’s the Bible — she believes in the Bible so much ! (Sadly, wala akong kinalaman diyan, laking pasalamat ko talaga sa school niya!).

She then asked if she could copy the verse. When I said yes, she sat down, copied it, rolled the paper, and put it in her shelf, probably to remind herself about the test.

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Jia copying the verse from the online Bible.

I was so proud of my girl. She was able to face a disappointment (this boy has been her crush since she was 4 years old) and get over it and then even do something to make sure she does not forget. I honestly do not know where she got her maturity. *insert a happy sigh*

I am also so proud of myself for not freaking out and for letting her feel that she could, in fact, talk to me about things like crushes and falling in love. I an anticipating that we would be going through this test a lot in the future. She told me she has 50 crushes now so at the very least, 49 more tests to go! Hahaha!

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On being a stay-at-home mom

Someone asked me if I had a hard time transitioning from being a working person to being a stay-at-home wife and mom (SAHWM). I have blogged about being a SAHWM and the changes it brought me but in snippets. This time, I will be talking fully about it.

This was the reason I decided to be a stay at home mom. But before I did, I had a thriving business and I have to be honest and say that the jump was scary.

Warmth in the Cold by Katie m. Berggren

Warmth in the Cold by Katie m. Berggren

I remember in college, although marriage and kids were not even on my mind,  I told my best friend that my plan was to be a homemaker/housewife and to throw luncheons and dinner parties. She jokingly retorted, “Hindi  housewife ang tawag dun! Socialite!” which was akin to her telling me that what I wanted was impossible. Hahaha! So I guess the pull to being home was there from the very beginning. In fact, when J and I got married, we were planning that I would be a stay-at-home wife.  So yes, the pull was there. Some of my friends from U.P. were telling me that they could not imagine being a SAHWM and they would die of boredom. That was never my concern. Still when we finally (J and I) decided to take the plunge, it was not easy for me.

My mom was a career person and except for one aunt, all of the adult females of my childhood were working women. I was very surprised though that my Mom was supportive of my decision to be a SAHWM. She was much more supportive of it than my decision to be a wedding planner! Hehehe! Also, I think I got it good because I seldom got insulting comments and retorts. Except for a couple of friends saying that they could not imagine stopping work, no one told me “Sayang ang pinag-aralan mo!” or words to that effect. I think it was because the way I presented myself did not give much opportunity for them to say that.

So if I had a supportive mom (and you have to admit, most SAHWMs have a hard time defending to their career moms their decisions) and did not get insults, what made it hard? The difficulty came from how I saw myself.

[Read more…]

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Our home remedies – Part 2

This is part of my Home Remedies series blog posts. Part 1 of this series can be found HERE.

DISCLAIMER: The home remedies I would enumerate below are the remedies I use for MY family. I am, in no way, a medical practitioner. Use the following home remedies with caution and at your own risk. This is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. My home remedies do not apply to infants. Please also always remember that natural/whole food does not mean no overdosage or no side effects. Practice prudence when employing natural home remedies. Garlic, for instance, seems to act as a blood thinner which prevents heart attacks but this also means that it should not be given up to a week before a surgery. Consult your doctor or medical practitioner.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera is love! I have never realized how great aloe vera is until recently. The gel can be used for so many things – from minor wounds to burns to all sorts of beautifying stuff.

I use fresh gel as I have aloe vera plants at home. It is so easy to grow and I suggest you grow your own, too.  I just peel the aloe vera and apply directly. Because I usually am in a hurry, I peel it with my hands (yeah, hindi ganito kaganda!). I just make sure to wash my hands thoroughly. I apply this directly to burns and minor wounds. I also used this as a poultice for Jia’s stye.
aloe vera [Read more…]

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Our home remedies

This is Part 1 of my series on Home Remedies. Part 2 can be found HERE.

When Jia was a toddler, she was allergic to so many things. My dreams of going to picnics with her (with woven picnic baskets, red and white checkered cloth, and me in my sundress! hahahaha!) was crushed the first time we went to UP and Jia was bitten by an insect. By the time, we got home, she was nursing a fever and was having a hard time breathing! At 18 months, Jia was prescribed with maintenance medicines. It broke my heart but what could I do? Maintenance meds for allergies (she had allergic rhinitis and asthma) were the lesser evil.

When Joya was born, he was more allergic than Jia! I remember pressing a cologne atomizer with my hand. I made sure that none of the cologne actually went to my hands. Hindi nabasa yung kamay ko at all! Then I touched Joya’s forehead and hair. In a few minutes, his skin was blotchy! I was shocked! One time, I told his yaya to bring Joya outside for a walk as he was just cooped up inside the house (we lived in a busy street). They were gone for 15 minutes. When they got back, Joya had hives!

When Joya was less than one year old, we found out he had asthma. In fact, he had atopic triad – asthma, allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis! I realized that sooner or later, Joya would also be on maintenance meds. That realization my search for an alternative. I did not want my kids to grow up swallowing medicines left and right. I had a kidney concern for a time and my MIL passed away from kidney problems so if I could do anything to lessen the chances of my kids having kidney problems, I would.

My search led me to homeopathy. In a few months’ time, my kids’ allergic attacks lessened considerably. Whereas we used to go to the doctor every month for medicines, when we switched to homeopathy, we seldom had to do so. I became a believer!

[Read more…]

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