Mar 31, 2013

While He Was At The Men's Section

Hubby and the boys were checking out the polos while I sat and waited. Role reversal for a few minutes, except that I made use of the waiting time taking vanity shots. :P

St. Francis of Assisi, Naga

"Naga was originally a visita of San Nicolas. It was erected as an independent parish on June 12, 1829 under the advocation of Saint Francis of Assisi. A plan for the church was executed by Bishop Santos Gomez Marañon and built by Father Simon Aguirre in 1850. A rectory of stone was built by Father Enrique Magaz who was parish priest from 1857 to 1864. In November 25, 1876 a typhoon damaged the belfry although it was repaired later on. Towards the end of World War II, the church was damaged by American bombing runs while the belfry and the rectory were totally destroyed. A different belfry was later built by Monsignor Cesar Alcoseba in 1979 while a new rectory was built in the mid-1970s by Father Arturo Tecson."

--- from The Heritage of Cebu

Mar 30, 2013

Immaculate Heart Of Mary, Minglanilla

Our second church was the Immaculate Heart of Mary or the Most Pure Heart of Mary in Minglanilla. Wikipilipinas wrote:

"Most Pure Heart of Mary Church's first structure was established by the Augustinians in 1878. The present church was established two years later, with light materials. Its stone convent was constructed from 1877 to 1886.
The church measures 18m long, 13m wide and 15m high. It has an impressive transept.

Its High Renaissance facade has asharp aisle roof.arches, semicircular arched main entrance and windows. The bell towers have pinnacles on the corners of the lower roof. The oldest bell was installed in 1863m the remaining was installed 18 years later.

San Pedro Calungsod Chapel, SRP Cebu

Our first stop was the San Pedro Calungsod Chapel at the SRP (South Road Properties). An article from Phil. Star stated that: "Designed by US-based architect Carlos Arnaiz, the Chapel of San Pedro Calungsod sits on an elevated 5,001 square meter lot within the SM Seaside Complex. It can accommodate up to 803 people.. It's pretty huge for a chapel, if I may say so.

The article continued to state that: "The Chapel was donated by Henry Sy, Sr. and Felicidad Sy to the Archdiocese of Cebu, and is dedicated to San Pedro Calungsod, the first Visayan saint, who is considered a role model for the youth. Martyred in Guam for his missionary work in 1672, he was beatified by Blessed Pope John Paul II on March 5, 2000. San Pedro Calungsod was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI at Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City last Oct. 21.

Here are pics of our group who embarked on a road trip to the south of Cebu to do our Visita Iglesia...

3 families in all

our sons


Short Interruption

I've been looking at all these pictures of our Visita Iglesia and short out-of-town trip to Dalaguete, Cebu, but I could not yet bring myself to sort and post on Flickr and FB. I have to focus on something else first as I just got reminded of the deadline for filing income taxes. April is in a few days and the scramble to file the documents usually heightens around this time, always near the April 15 deadline... very last minute. And for sure even with ample time for preparation, people would always wish for a tax extension. Lol.

And because I am a CPA, one might think that this should be a no-brainer, but I have been inactive in the practice since I joined the corporate world right after college. My work experience span a total of 20 years until I went on sabbatical in 2010. The basics are the same but there are new tax regulations or processes I have to familiarize myself with. Thankfully, with the very dynamic pace in technology, I'm glad there are faster ways to do the paperwork now... Not entirely cutting the tedious process but I'm sure we'll soon have a more extensive online site or application similar to the ones in other countries for their federal tax forms. Meanwhile, I will go check what we have to submit for this year's deadline.

Mar 28, 2013

Waning Gibbous Moon

The moon was a huge orange as it slowly moved up in the horizon seemingly detaching itself from the surface of the sea. It was a sight to behold. Was it a full moon? We were at Dalaguete Church Plaza in Cebu on Maundy Thursday that time and I couldn't help googling the moon phase for the day. I found out it was a "waning gibbous moon". Interesting.

It was almost pitch-dark except for the glow coming from the moon and a few fluorescent lights illuminating the sea wall. Perfect for a few trick shots with my sons, Matt and Kyle, just using the iPhone...

Beautiful Scenery

Mar 26, 2013

Thank You For Making Us Proud!

Our second son, Kyle, together with 316 boys and girls, graduated from high school* last Saturday.

This boy, with the tendency to procrastinate and who seldom approached me for any help (yeah right, like i could help in chem, physics, trigo or algebra :P), except to borrow my laptop, managed to snag 3 medals***. It was almost unbelievable. Haha! Unbelievable only because he didn't allow me to pry into his academic affairs and if not for the report card grades, I was sort of clueless.

Sure, he would tell me things about extracurricular activities. But with regard to homework, he would just answer my questions in monosyllables. Hmm... No... Yes... Done... These were pretty much what I remember him saying.

So last Saturday, although we knew in advance he was getting medals, donning them on him was pretty surreal. He probably didn't need my constant nagging after all. He has his medals to prove that he was in charge.

Well done, Kyle! On to college!

*Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu
Bronze medal for Academic Excellence
Bronze medal for being an Outstanding Cadet
Loyalty medal

the graduates, 317 in all, in their Dino Lloren designed toga

our family (minus our youngest who was indisposed) with Fr. Manny, the school president

posing with his cousin, 2nd honorable mention :)

side-effect of medals?

here with my ma, godmother and in-laws

post-graduation dinner with my parents, my godfather and my entire brood

"Hmm... Yes... Done..."

The rest of the pics here >>> Graduation Album

Mar 22, 2013

The Bird A Nest, Spider A Web, Man Friendship*

Thirty years plus and still counting. This lady doctor friend of mine and I go a long way. We've been friends since our grade/high school years at De La Salle Zobel. So literally, we've known each other for more than half of our lives. Imagine all the stuff we know about each other! Haha.

She and hubby are in town for the doctors' convention (as of this writing). And while her hubby was busy delivering his talk at Radisson, my friend and I were at Cafe Laguna sampling the fresh lumpia, bibingka and saba/langka turon while chatting the afternoon away. We reminisced the past, spoke of the present with relish and touched on short term family plans. We covered a lot and talked mostly about... life. LOL. Good times.

* quote by William Blake

Mar 19, 2013

Channeling Barney

While lazing at home
A pop of purple
Among monochrome

(Pardon the lame attempt at writing rhymes. Lol)

Not really a fave color but my closet seems to have quite a number of purples / violets...


We are on the first week of almost three months of school break. It's quite a long free time for my soon-to-be 3rd grader. I dread the thought of him whiling away his time by playing with the laptop, tablet or cellphone. Hello sedentary lifestyle! So far, we have managed to think of activities to fill our long days.

A few days ago, he was told to take an afternoon nap to make up for lost sleep during the days he was reviewing for their final tests. He did, but not too willingly (haha! kids!), because he wanted to spend it playing instead. The other time, we did origami and spent the afternoon cutting and folding used paper to make a crown, sunglasses and a 4-point star which he called a ninja star. Lol. His tattered bear is now the beneficiary of the origami figures.

In between activities, he would be allowed to watch tv. Or he could play the ipad for a limited time as long as he also reads the storybooks I downloaded for him. Like I said, so far so good. I just have to not let him have his way with the gadgets. There are some other things he could do.

Fortunately, he is also fond of tinkering with his Lego blocks, reading his Wimpy Kid books and running around pretend-playing he is some cowboy, soldier or superhero. The longer he does it, zipping in and out of the rooms, up and down the stairs and bouncing on beds, the better for me.

Right this very minute, he's watching Amazing World of Gumball on Cartoon Network while alternately pretend-playing he's a ninja. And I'm blogging, bloghopping, trying out virtual stock market at, checking my emails and updating my social network sites. Lol.

We're both good. :)

Sans Make-up Kind of Morning With Cuzns

After several attempts to meet up and equal counts of misses, we finally got together. Unplanned.

Mar 18, 2013

He Calls It Ninja Star Origami

I downloaded a free origami app for Jake and we've been cutting and folding paper the whole afternoon... This one is his favorite ☺.

Productive afternoon = 1
Gadget/computer gaming = 0

Mar 13, 2013

Last Day

Studying for tomorrow, last day of tests, and beating the heat at the same time here at SIL's resto.

School break in less than 24 hours! Woot!

Paper Soccer

Our grader was playing this with his friends when I found him in school this morning. He told me they were playing paper soccer. How clever! The "players" were made of folded pieces of paper, and a crumpled rounded piece made for a ball. They tapped the nearest "player" to hit the ball while the other "players" were positioned to block it. Very imaginative...

My thought bubble was: next to the actual game, this is way better than playing the console, tablet, computer or the iphone version/s. :)

Mar 11, 2013

Compli Ice Cream Dessert For Birthday Boy After Sumo Sam Dinner

Trying To Make Waves

Either the bendy rollers are ineffective or my hair is hopelessly straight. LOL. Maybe I should leave them for more than 2 hours. :)

During dinner, Kyle, our 16yo son, arrived from his outreach activity... He proceeded to kiss me...

Me : Hi... Do you notice anything? (I flipped my hair to flaunt the soft waves)
Kyle: Huh?
Kyle: Ah...Oh! You colored your hair?
Me : Anuba, kainis naman...

An Hour Early

1050am was written in our grader's notebook, however, actual dismissal was 1150am, we soon found out. What a messed-up schedule! But since it is the grader's birthday today.... his brother and I will let it slide 😠😎. Here are pics taken during the looong wait.

Mar 7, 2013

Miracle Personified

Our youngest boy is turning 9 in a few days.

Hard to imagine we would go this far that day he was born in 2004 weighing only 2 pounds. It was a case of oligohydramnios. To simplify, because of this condition, I had to deliver via Caesarean section asap. I was on my 8th month then.

I didn't mind the sudden CS delivery. My doctor knew what was best for me and the baby. However, seeing our son so thin and gaunt after he was pulled out, got us worried. He was literally skin and bones and looked very fragile.

We had two things going for us and keeping our hopes up. First, he took anything that was fed him. But because he was too tiny to latch on to me or to a preemie bottle, we had to use a syringe for his water and breastmilk. Second, he was alert. During feeding time, he would look straight to my eyes while he suckled. He would blink at the bright light or would get jolted by noise.

Other than his low birthweight, everything else was normal, lungs, kidneys, brain... Thank heavens!

Hubby and I were so happy and relieved that after 9 days in the neonatal intensive care unit, he was officially discharged. The team of doctors and nurses named him "Grower" after he gained some grams in such a short time under their care.

Now, he is taller than some of his peers, he talks a mile a minute and his energy seems endless. As a bonus, he has excellent school grades too. Is this the same 2-pound baby?

Jake, our survivor and miracle personified, is turning 9 in a few days.



Jake is ready for the swim/party

Enjoying the sand (part 2)







Mar 6, 2013

Trying To Be Cool About It

The medical lab test results (first batch) are out and it's a mix of good and not so good news. I guess it comes with age. At 45, I am not surprised why there are aches and pains here and there. I'm not talking about arthritis or other more debilitating conditions that would require maintenance medication. Those tests are yet to be done for 2013. And I haven't been put under prescription drugs yet, thankyouverymuch. It's the other kind of condition reserved for mid-lifers. LOL.

According to my lady doctor, I am about to cross to the next level. This phase before getting "there" could take months or years, nobody knows for sure except that there is no stopping it. That should explain the mood swings (now there's my excuse!), occasional hot flashes (sometimes even after a cool shower) and night sweating (even with the A/C on). So, those in the know are probably familiar with what I am talking about... Peri-whatchamacallit is.

Now lunch, coffee or dinner talks with my girlfriends would not be just about our hubbies, the highs and lows of raising a family, our kids' prom, graduation, their first job or their shopping for black tuxes and blue bridesmaid dresses (dear me! no!), Lipitor or botox. In my next conversation with friends, I have something new to tell them. Yeah, we talk about anything and everything. So I would probably get the ball rolling and say "Hey, I'm teetering toward that phase na. Haha! See you there soon?"

Okay, that's just me trying to be cool about it... despite the mood swings... :D

Hello Mid-Life! Feb 2013, photo credit: my hubby, the reluctant paparazzi :P

Mar 4, 2013

On My Own (A Split Sec)

While doing the headstand, king of all yoga poses, this morning, I requested my yoga buddy to take a video so I would know where I could improve on with the pose. Thankfully, there's a split second clip where our instructor, Kim, sort of let go. Viewing it, I realized I gained enough core strength to hold my own weight for a moment. Not easy but not as difficult as before. I guess I am really getting there!

I'm still working on my alignment. It's quite a challenge with my 20% spinal curvature (scoliosis). It's hard to know whether I'm straight up or leaning to one side. Practice... practice...

Truly, I am thankful for the patience of our instructor! So far my yoga journey is going smoothly.


Waiting for Ashtanga Class to Start

Mar 3, 2013

Light Dinner For 4 Before 6PM

Yes we're done with dinner by 6pm at my SIL's resto. It was light and healthy because we ate too much during lunch today. Guilty reflex. LOL.

We blame the yummy lunch spread at my MIL's place for our over-indulgence. The happy chatter among family members about our soon-to-be graduates (son and nephews) led us to keep reaching for the pasta and the sweets. Ayayay!

We'll Be Complete Soon!

Eldest son, Matt, who is in 3rd year college in Manila will be home in Cebu for the Holy Week.

It's been almost 2 months since his last visit. I could hardly wait. :)

I wonder how I would hold up when son#2, Kyle, goes to university and joins Matt in Manila this May.


Mar 2, 2013

Trying Out Antica Osteria

I have read on social media about this quaint little Italian resto near Maria Luisa (Cebu). Last night, we went to the place to order take out pizza. Just that, because we already had dinner and were on our way home. :)

The 4 formaggi was delizioso! We'll definitely go back.

Color Reversal

Gotcha at mid-yawn...

My 16yo son and I hurriedly got ready to go somewhere and found ourselves looking like this... LOL. Matchy-matchy. Parang kakanta.

Mar 1, 2013

Making Time

... photos of me with our youngest son...

The school is a long drive away from home. Though we pay a carpool service monthly, hubby and I sometimes drive him straight to and from school even if it means getting caught in rush hour traffic and spending a bit more on fuel.

On the way, we listen to Harry Potter audiobooks, munch on banana-cue, drink young coconut juice, or chat about stuff, mostly nonsensical. It could seem pretty mundane to some people, but this is how we savor this time with our fast-growing boy...

Better Than a Lab Gown