The World According to Joey: Heartbreak

imageLast year when I joined Joey for his annual fieldtrip, I was quite shocked to see him holding hands with one of his classmates; he didn’t even leave her side and I was left wandering behind them. A few months after that, Joey told me that his classmates have been teasing them everyday and that they are together all the time, especially during breaks.

Curious as to how far things have progressed, I asked Joey how his “girlfriend” reacted when she found out he’s moving to a new school next school year (he had taken and passed the entrance exam at one of the big schools near our place).

Me: So Joey, how are you and “A”?

Joey: We don’t talk anymore.

Me (taken aback, knowing they were inseparable just a few weeks ago): Why? Did you have a fight?

Joey: Mom, it wouldn’t have worked anyway. I’m moving to a new school so what’s the point?

Me: (speechless; so I guess this means he knows the concept of long distance relationships – at nine years old!!!)

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The Simple Life

Ever since I was a kid, I have always wanted to live in a farm – you know, grow my own vegetables, plant trees, maybe some chicken? But of course, reality sets in and the dream takes the backseat.

So I always enjoy making the two-hour drive to my Papa’s province to visit their farm. It isn’t much; it is rather small, but, it earned enough when they were young to feed a family of nine kids and send them all the way to college.

The first thing I do when I arrive? I look for the makahiya or mimosa and touch their leaves until the entire bush is drooping! Bonus points that we found all these pink blooms!

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You want to know a little secret? Our family’s farm has a tiny, hidden nook with flowing stream. It was a hot summer day during our visit so the stream was a bit dried up, but when the weather’s cool, you can hear it flowing through rocks. When I was younger, my papa used to catch fish here and my cousins and I would take a dip in the summer.

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But what I love most living in a farm is picking fruits! We have several mango trees on the property and they’ve all been amazing – they yield sacks and sacks of mangoes every year, and very fragrant and sweet mangoes too!

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I guess it’s pretty obvious where I got my love for mangoes. You can’t blame me: I spent many lazy afternoons when I was a small girl sitting on one of the branches of my favorite indian mango tree and eating mangoes straight from the tree!

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We live in the city and hubby and I are working almost seven days a week so my kids rarely get the chance to visit the farm as often as I did (and I alreadyisited rarely then), so whenever my old man volunteers to take us/them, I always let then. These are the summers I want them to remember, not the ones spent playing gadgets or watching TV. And summers like these are hard to find.

 

 

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Georgie’s First Birthday

November’s a pretty busy month for our family – sisters in law, mother in law, hubby, nephew, and Georgie all have birthdays during the month so practically all weekends are taken. It can get pretty tiring when compounded with the fact that it’s also a busy time at work and the hubby just switched companies (adding his PhD studies to the mix) so for Georgie’s birthday, we decided to just have a quiet dinner near our place.

But before all that, Georgie’s gotta have his first haircut at kids salon Peppermint! On a side note, I know I said I don’t like SM Aura when it opened last year, but I am loving it now more and more – aside from the kiddie salon, Kidzville and Quantum opened a few weeks ago so even kids can enjoy while their parents shop. If only there’s a Zara, Mango, and some decent jewelry stores, I will not shop anywhere else.

IMG_4657Kuya was very patient with Georgie even though he kept swatting the scissors and comb and crying.

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We also made it to the mass at the Pedro Calungsod chapel to give thanks. It was standing room only but a good thing that Georgie was fast asleep; otherwise, he would have cried the whole time if he’d seen the crowd.

I was quite famished by the time mass finished and you all know how hard it is to get decent tables in restos during weekends (and with a stroller in tow, we needed a spacious place for dinner); we initially thought of going to Niu for some steak and wine (and of course, buffet) but they were full.  Yet for some reason, the Magnum Cafe was only half-full. I already knew we’d have dessert here but we got to have dinner there too!

We first ordered their roast beef salad. I’m partial to salads because I generally dislike leafy vegetables but this one had fresh ingredients. How can I tell? The leaves didn’t taste bitter. Oh, and the tasty beef strips probably helped a lot. Food at Magnum is very rich tasting so it can get kind of overwhelming after a while which is why it is best if you come as a group so you can share different items off the menu. Luckily, hubby is always a good sport when it comes to dining out. Teehee.

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Joey loved the cajun spiced chicken. He normally doesn’t like spicy food, but this one had just the right mix of spice, crisp and everything good in between. I didn’t even mind the chicken skin because it was so tasty (but don’t tell my parents – we weren’t allowed to eat chicken skin at our house since they’re not healthy; I used to look longingly at chicken skin and pork fat everytime my mama throws them away before cooking). Joey ate almost the entire serving by himself.

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I love this mash-up of super soft beef and perfectly mashed potatoes. The gravy is to die for!

IMG_4642Of course, as per tradition of having pasta during birthdays for long life, we ordered Magnum Bolognese. It’s basically your standard red spaghetti but with shavings of chocolate to top off all those meatballs and sauce. Very yummy.

IMG_4643And of course, dessert! We got red velvet, for a change. Very nice, not too sweet – but I still prefer their apple pie.

IMG_4641Joey opted to have his own make your own Magnum (but…he ordered off the menu).

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Too bad Georgie missed everything – he slept through it all! Hahaha!

IMG_4644We initially thought of having a birthday party for Georgie’s first birthday. After all, we threw his big brother one almost seven years ago and we wanted him to have a party too. But then, hubby and I realized that Joey didn’t really enjoy his party, much less remember it so we decided we’ll just throw a party when Georgie’s old enough to walk and appreciate the magician and clowns.

Happy birthday my dear little Georgie! You don’t know how happy you’ve made us. I wish you good health and may you grow up to be a God-fearing, obedient boy.

Mini Me

This should put to rest all doubts on whether Georgie looks like me or not.

That's me during my baptism (left), and my first birthday (right).

That’s me during my baptism (left), and my first birthday (right).

Plus, I am happy to report Georgie got my long, tapered fingers and not dear hubby’s pudgy ones.

At one month.

At one month.

At seven months. How can anyone resist those big puppy eyes?

At seven months. How can anyone resist those big puppy eyes?

A Mother’s Day Foodtrip at Project Pie

My family and I aren’t big fans of eating out when I was younger. Sure, we’d go out every once in a while but we didn’t consciously do it whenever there were occasions or events. During birthdays, we would just cook special meals at home and let the birthday celebrator pick his/her gift. Our dining out thingies were more spur of the moment decisions, like when we’d all get in the car with no itinerary and decide to go eat sinigang and inihaw in Tagaytay. Looking back, I think this is why as grown-ups, my siblings and I never felt forced to throw a bash or buy gifts or anything – we were raised by parents who valued more the thought of being together for a momentous event and making someone happy, while at the same time being practical about it (at a time when just about every classmate was throwing a party every other weekend, my parents would tell me, would you rather have a party and have no money after or have a simple dinner at home and have money?). 
Well, I may have been raised that way but given my stubborn nature (that’s the one constant adjective that people seem to come up with hen asked about it), I decided to throw a devil may care attitude last Mother’s Day and treat my mom and siblings out for lunch (the dear old man’s not invited since he and mama are still not on speaking terms) at, where else, but the newest pizza place near our old house (we are suckers for pizza – more on that later)?
I am thanking my lucky stars even now that Fairview Terraces, a new Ayala mall, has opened just a short distance from our house. I mean, I love SM coz they’ve got it all for me, but the place is just too crowded and at the risk of sounding snobbish, I always fear for my bag whenever I’m in an SM mall (based on previous experiences). And I am thanking my lucky stars even more that Project Pie has a branch there. 
What’s special about this place is unlike other pizza parlors, you get to make your pizza from scratch (or from dough, hahaha) following three simple steps.
1) Choose whether you want white (olive oil) or red (tomato) sauce.

2) Choose your cheese, and believe me, they’ve got plenty: mozzarella, feta, blue/gorgonzola, ricotta, and parmesan.

3) Choose your toppings: pepperoni, sausage, crumbled meatballs, bacon, chicken, prosciutto, anchovies…

I took my sweet time picking my toppings. I like making pizza at home and putting loads of cheese on it so I really enjoyed the process. Hihi.

Okay, my mama, who is a Piscean by the way (yes, that makes all the difference because in case you haven’t noticed, people born under that star sign tend to have difficulties in making decisions, pizza included), couldn’t make up her mind. Hahaha.

After that, the pizzas are heated up in a “really, really hot” oven.

Voila!
I got red sauce (duh), mozzarella, blue cheese, feta, pepperoni, pineapples, mushrooms, onions and rosemary on my DIY pizza. Plus, a bottomless order of peach iced tea.

But in case you’re not feeling up to the task, you can just “order by number” and select from one of their pre-arranged pizzas. Not bad at all, really. They cost more or less the same (Php 245/Php 285). I’m actually quite surprised at how relatively cheap the pizzas were.

You can order beer, in case you’re the pizza/beer type. Me, I don’t drink beer (or soft drinks, FYI).
Little bro and little sis. They used to call me the “bully” ate. In fact, my brother’s classmates called me the monster, presumably because I am the strictest sister this side of the planet.

Hubby and me. He already finished his pizza, but he still ate half of mine. Sheesh.

Okay, one thing I splurged on: I got my mama a new phone. 
Not that she needed me to buy it for her – it was one of those things she would never get around to buying herself (trust me, she can spend tens of thousands on a new music player or a new gas range, but she would never spend for a cellphone). In fact, as I was paying for the phone, I was half scared she’d get mad coz I am spending money on a gift.  You see, my parents never ask or expect gifts; even when I’d go out on trips abroad or during Christmas, they would only ask me what I did and where I’ve been. If I so much as give them a bag of imported chocolates, they would freak out because they would rather that I save that up for retirement or the kids’ education than on something less tangible (they’re not stingy in case you’re wondering; they just didn’t want us to grow up with that sense of entitlement and they’re just both really good at handling finances, which hopefully rubs off on me really soon). So giving a sorta expensive gift was kind of a big deal.

Hurray! She likes it! (breathes a sigh of relief)

The day we were there, Project Pie was also having a little artsy thing going on. They had the pillars outside the store decked in canvas and drawn with thought bubbles where customers can put quotes or anecdotes according to the three tenets of Project Pie: Design, Build, Eat.

The second one from top, left, is what my mama wrote. Unfortunately, she used a yellow pen which wasn’t exactly the best option. She couldn’t even read it after she finished writing it. Hahaha.

My brother was a bit more, err, creative, although the little sis did all the writing (the little brother has questionable handwriting skills).

How about you? How would you design your pizza? 🙂

The World According to Joey and Jorge: Let’s Star Wars Party!

One of my favourite pastimes is organizing events/travels – hubby has learned to trust my decisions when it comes to planning our trips (although he complains that I spend way too much on hotels) and family events (yes, I planned our own wedding from scratch). So I was very excited to have not one, but two major events to plan for earlier this year: Joey’s 7th birthday and Jorge’s baptism.
Jorge was born less than three months away from Joey’s birthday so we decided to have just one celebration (less expensive, not to mention, less of a hassle to plan on our end, and for relatives/friends to troop all the way to the event venue).
I was quite busy the first half of the year but thankfully, the church was a no-brainer: we stuck with St. Francis in Mandaluyong since it was where Joey was baptized (and where my parents got married back in 1979). We were such last minute planners we actually registered at the church one week before our planned date. Hahaha.
I just had to get a sailor-inspired baptismal outfit for Jorge, similar to the one I wore for my first birthday.
Jorge was probably the only baby who didn’t cry when the holy water was poured on his head.
Jorge with his godparents (we’re missing a sister-in-law and two friends from this pic) – our list of godparents, made of close friends and family, is short. But these are the people Ipe and I know we can call even in the middle of the night for no reason whatsoever.
Nunez-Cruz family.
With the Salvosa family
Nunez girls.

The baptism finished shortly after 12nn but Joey’s party was at two, so we herded everyone and treated them to snacks at Mary Grace while waiting.
Eighty years between them. And you can tell my lola likes the little boy who looks so much like her favorite apo (ahem, me).

Anyway, planning the party was the hard one. We initially thought of doing it at Shakey’s (since everybody eats pizza, the place was near the church, and it was more pocket-friendly) but Joey wanted a Star Wars/Lego party and Shakey’s only allows Justice League/generic themed-parties. I didn’t have the heart to disappoint the little brat so we looked for a place that would allow us the freedom to have our own theme.
I didn’t realize so many kids were celebrating their birthdays! We started looking at venues quite late – practically two weeks before Joey’s birthday and all the places we wanted were booked up until end of February, and we ended up getting a late March date at Kidzville.
This way please!

What I loved about this place was that while it was in a mall (Podium), said mall was not very crowded. Plus, since they weren’t affiliated with any particular company, we could very well have whatever theme we wanted. Google was our friend looking for Star Wars stuff – we got plates, tumblers, and forks from an online vendor over at Sulit. We would have ordered other party stuff from Singapore but we were afraid they wouldn’t make it before the party (not to mention, a single standee was worth Php2,500!!!).
If you have any idea on how meticulously I planned our own wedding, then you probably wouldn’t be surprised that I dragged the hubby to Divisoria for a few weekends to hunt for Lego stuff. Unfortunately, we didn’t find a single party store with Lego materials although we did find some fake Lego toys from China. I did get some cute table markers for the party.
I was very busy in the weeks leading up to the party but hubby was very hands on with the details. He designed the entire invite, including the text (of course), while I got those cute clips to hold them up on the table.

Since it was a Lego-themed party, we requested the venue if we could use black, red and yellow balloons and we added a balloon package so that the room wouldn’t be so bare. Hubby selected Star Wars songs which we played from his Mac throughout the party.
We selected the characters on Joey’s chocolate cake – Luke Skywalker, Yoda, and Han Solo, atop a blue/black sky filled with stars. Jorge’s cupcakes were also Star Wars characters.
Loot bags for the kids! We added one Lego (the ones made from China, hahaha) toy per bag to make it more aligned with our theme.

As with the cake, Kidzville also had an in-house caterer, The Creamery Catering, so all we had to do was pick the menu for adults (I got the seven dishes rate). The kids’ menu was fixed though, consisting of spaghetti and chicken and snow cones.  Food was really good, from appetizer (assorted canapés) up to dessert (brownies)! I actually went back for seconds, and ate some more of the leftovers when we got home.
Snow cones! I think the adults enjoyed the snow cones more than the kids did!
Yummy canapes! I think I ate about ten of these (and more at home)!

Of course, Joey had to wear a costume but hubby and I couldn’t find one (or to be more precise, we didn’t have time) so we bought some fabric from Carolina’s, a light saber from Toy Kingdom, and some brown boots from Payless. Good thing our yayas were quite adept at hand-stitching everything and were able to finish his cloak before the party.
The yayas and hubby labored over this costume, based on instructions from Youtube.
Joey’s cake from Baked Twinkles was very cute and delicious!
Chewbacca cupcakes!!!
Family
Friends

We originally thought of just having parlor games but decided at the last minute to hire a magician – one of the best decisions about this party! It would have been quite boring if the kids only had to play several rounds of Trip to Jerusalem! We also got a photo booth although I guess photo booths are quite passe already that only our yayas went for numerous shots. Hahha!
The magician playing his tricks.
The grown-ups weren’t spared: they had to play games too!

One of our main games was the costume contest. I wanted to go as Queen Amidala but wasn’t able to rent a costume but I was so happy that the kids came in costume.
Yes, our friends Eya and Eldric even had R2-D2, C3PO costumes made for their kids! Look at R2! Of course he won first place!
With our Varsi/journalist friends. No event of ours will be complete with this bunch. Thank you all for coming!

Some tips in party planning:
  • Plan in advance – so you can get the venue you want, and sometimes, even haggle for better prices.
  • Stick to your budget, but be reasonable. Hubby had this unreasonable expectation of having a themed-party for only Php 20,000 but I put my foot down. Hahaha.
  • Use the internet – it’s the best tool you have. We got our plates and utensils from an online store and our playlist and invitation decors from various websites.
  • Work out your guest list – as with any event, the number of guests you have largely determines the amount you’ll eventually have to shell out. In our case, we already had a big family and a lot of common friends so our guest list revolved only around those two groups.
  • Invite lots of kids! This is something I learned from my parents – when throwing a party for your kid, know that it is their party, not yours, so invite people they would be happy to be with. When I had my debut, my parents allowed me free rein and only reserved two tables for their own guests so for Joey and Jorge’s party, we invited Joey’s friends and his cousins, as well as kids of our friends.

I can’t wait for our next big event: Jorge’s 1st birthday in November!

2013

2013 may have been a very bad year for our country and for a lot of people (judging from the news feed on my Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts), and in some ways, it was for me as well. But there were a lot of good things that happened to too, several items I was able to cross off my bucket list, which makes the year that was quite an awesome one, overall. 
  • Went on two out of the country vacations this year. Hubby and I have clashing schedules (it ain’t easy planning trips between a workaholic journalist/professor and a workaholic accountant in operations) so I’ve pretty much toned down my travel goals – go on at least two domestic and one out of the country trip during the year. After years of nagging the hubby, we finally went on a trip to Europe. Granted, the latter half of it I spent touring Belgium by myself and I wasn’t able to make the most of the trip since I was like a fat walrus, but eating Laduree macarons on the steps of Versailles, going on a cruise down the Seine River on my birthday, hearing mass at the Notre Dame, and time-travelling to the middle ages in lovely Bruges more than makes this mini-vacation one of the best I’ve ever taken.
  • This year too, we were able to revisit Cebu, if only for the weekend, which is a memorable place for us since we had our honeymoon there (and Boracay) seven years ago. We also went back to Bohol, one of my favourite spots in the country, and saw the old churches before they were destroyed by the devastating earthquake a couple of months ago. 
  • And as a bonus? I also travelled with two of my friends to Hongkong. I haven’t travelled out of the country with friends in three years and as much as I love our little family unit, it’s also nice to travel with friends, or even by yourself (which is practically what I did in Belgium this year, and in the US last year).
  • Bought a new car. Honestly, I was thinking of getting a new car in 2014 (along with having baby #2), but since baby #2 made an early entrance, then the car had to be bumped up a bit as well, out of necessity. See, our old sedan would have been too cramped what with four of us now (six, if the nannies tag along; nanny #2 will be reporting for work tomorrow). And you all know how much stuff a baby needs when travelling. It’s like bringing your own house.
  • Started my collection of designer shoes. And added a couple of little trinkets to my bag/wallet stash. This is not a hobby I’m particularly keen on growing (hello, money doesn’t grow on trees), but it doesn’t hurt to splurge every now and then. 
Bought my first Giuseppe Zanotti, Repetto, and French Sole (and I sneaked in some Longchamp rubber shoes). FIghting the urge to get a pair of studded Valentinos – see? Shoes are my weakness.

  • Made it to our family reunions this year. See, I’ve always had what I call the holiday curse since I was a kid. I was always sick during either Christmas or New Year! Last year, I spent the day before Christmas in the emergency room (and another day prior to that), getting shots for a wound on my foot and literally unable to walk because of an infected boil on my leg.
  • A new baby! I’m not as young and as strong as I used to be and I had a very lousy nine months, but seeing his cute face, even scrunched up while crying, erases all the pains. I now have two adorable little boys – and life is perfect. There are no words to describe this kind of happiness, or maybe I just become inarticulate all the time in the face of such joy.
Okay, so baby #2’s in a not so good mood here but this is the only photo(as of now) I have of the two of them together.

Funny, I was thinking 2013 was a bad year but just coming up with the list above suddenly made me realize how fabulous and blessed 2013 had been. Here’s to wishing 2014 tops it!

The World According to Joey: The Elf and The Dormouse


I wanted to make up to Joey for all the nights I’ve been spending late at the office so I decided that for this year, I am going to do my best to help him win the oral interpretation contest. Fyi, he lost last year – he was absent for two weeks prior to the contest and was burning with fever on the day itself that he forgot some of the lines (he had to start from the beginning).
That, and the fact that his costume left a lot to be desired. He recited the Three Little Kittens and we just got him an old black shirt and a pair of black leggings from the girls’ section at the mall. I was actually shocked when I saw how some of the moms went all out with their costumes.   


So this year, I vowed that I will make Joey’s costume myself, even if I have to spend sleepless nights labouring on it.  Armed with that resolve, I bought yards of felt fabric and huge buttons and proceeded to make an elf costume. Oh wait, I cheated bit – I didn’t sew the t-shirt and the shorts (I ran out of time and the pants were left half-finished). 
 

My hard work paid off – Joey took home the silver medal. 😀
Ganito na ang mga bata ngayon, tablet na ang libangan habang nagaantay

Hubby and I were rediscovering our love for Shakey’s so we took Joey to one near our home to celebrate his win and gorged on old-time favourites from our college days:

Oh dear Mojos, how I’ve missed you so!

You would have thought an army was dining out that day but no, it was just me, hubby and the kid. Oh well. Diet plans blown.

Mommy, I’m Five!

The little boybie brat turned five a couple of days ago and since I liked the cake we gave my friend Leah for her 30th birthday, I decided to have a personalized cake made for Joey as well. We had two celebrations for the kid, one for each side of the family, since our house is kind of small and because of well, scheduling conflicts. The cake arrived just in time for the 2nd one, which was also a sort of joint one with my mama, who celebrated her birthday a day after Joey.

Had to move it to the sofa so it can be beside it’s inspiration (yes folks, the inspiration for the topper is Joey’s McQueen car and favorite stuffed toys, sans Panda). Cake by Bake Happy.
Look at the details! Everything is edible kids!

I must tell you, this cake might look dainty but it was darn heavy! Like five kilos heavy. Hahaha. My arms ached just carrying it from my desk down to our office building’s driveway last Friday. But it was all worth it, seeing the look on Joey’s face. Priceless. I told him he couldn’t eat it yet since his lolo and mamu aren’t due to arrive til Sunday and he spent almost every minute guarding the cake.

Even the colors are spot on

The “models” with the cake topper (which Joey had to “protect” from his guests – the kids in our building, who began to apportion the topper amongst themselves to Joey’s dismay)
The “miniature” with the inspiration

The lunch gathering was supposed to be just us famly but Joey broadcasted to all his friends that he was “throwing a party at 2PM” so we got surprised when a bunch of kids started knocking on our door. Imagine Joey’s face when they each wanted to get Angry, Cow and Mcqueen to themselves. Another priceless look. Joey immediately uninvited them, saying, “I was just joking when I invited you guys.” Hahaha. Good thing they were game enough to just settle for the trees and mountains on the side of the cake.

Joey holding up Angry

Oh, and this was Joey’s 2nd cake. As I said, he had two celebrations. His first cake was a simple one from the neighborhood Goldilocks. 😛

Birthday cake # 1

Joey making a secret wish

And since we barely get together anymore, had to take this opportunity to snap some photos with the lolo and mamu.

And as a birthday gift, I decided to add to Joey’s growing Lego collection (technically, we bought him his birthday gift weeks back, but he forgot that already, so I had to buy another one). Good thing my sisters in law were thinking along the same vein and got him some Lego too. And some new cars. Spoiled brat alert. Haha.

*You can have your specially designed cake too – check out Bake Happy’s Facebook page at or blog

Christmas 2011

Christmas Party at Republiq – great company though I did get hungry (and my hair smelled realllly bad):

Dinner with Ipe’s high school barkada at SM North…and a photo op at the North Pole-themed Sky Garden:
dessert at this little cafe at the Sky Garden – forgot the name though

The best custaroons ever from my friend Neri. I’ve been wanting to buy these custaroons but I only know of their Eastwood branch, and I am too lazy to go there:

Finally setting up our Christmas tree the day before Christmas. Talk about last minute. Oh, and I did my shopping only last Thursday. I literally dropped from exhaustion. Well, that’s what happens when you work 11 hours straight then shop for four hours straight without even stopping for dinner. Whew.

Christmas Eve mass at the Sta. Ana Church in Taguig, before we started our food giving:

Joey opening his presents. Tons of presents, might I add. Courtesy of doting titos and titas and just about everyone. It helps to be a really sweet and cute little kid. Now I don’t have to buy him any new toys until next Christmas. Hehe.

Going home to my parents’ house and seeing our old dog Britney looking, literally, like a pig. Seriously, did I tell you she suffered s stroke and just flopped on the floor unmoving? And she had to undergo emergency operation coz she couldn’t give birth to her puppy. Papa was beside himself with grief (as in he was breaking down into sobs on the phone when he called me up to tell me Britney was at the vet, haha!). She’s doing fine now, obviously.

Joey with his cousin JC “from the far place” as he calls it. My sister lives in Cavite and works the night shift so we rarely see each other. 

Finally getting a mini-tripod so we can have a decent enough family photo (I still insist on us having a studio pic sometime soon).

Not officially together anymore, but hey, at least we’re all in this picture, right? I’d settle for this photo, for now

At UST

Christmas this year was hectic – we started late, around noon, since we were too tired from all the preparations and food giving the night before. Plus, we had two reunions to go to this year on the same day, and they weren’t exactly right next to each other. Usually, Christmas Day is spent with my side of the family (my father’s side, actually, in Bulacan), as it has been a tradition to hold the family reunion on this day for as long as I can remember. Unfortunately, Ipe’s side also decided to bump up their reunion on the same day so you can say we were literally driving all over Bulacan and Metro Manila. But hey, at least we made it. Too bad we were too bummed to make it to my tita’s house in Manila. I would have loved to end the day with her fabulous cooking.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas like I did.