Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Our 9th Wedding Anniversary

August 10, 2010 at 6:30 am -- Not yet fully awake, I saw my husband leaving what seems to be something white near me. Squeezed between the sleeping girls, I cannot move to find out. You see, the night before, the girls and I decided to have our special bonding night where we camped in front of the living room and watched TV until late.

Around 8 am, I woke up and almost forgot about that something white. It fluttered on the floor. I saw it was a letter. I saw it was an anniversary love letter!

Oh my, shame on me. I completely forgot our wedding anniversary. When I told the girls, they also complained saying it is unfair. 'Why did you not tell us earlier? Then you are to blame if you wont get any gifts from us,' they said.

To atone, I declared that the whole day would just be a family day, as every wedding anniversary celebration we had. The girls could choose where we would go and do during the day and I could choose where we would have dinner. Everybody agreed!

Traditionally, we always celebrate our wedding anniversay in the hotel-restaurant where we had our wedding reception; but since we are in the Philippines and not in Germany -- we just enjoyed the memories of that day and that place.

We went to SM Mall of Asia, the largest mall in Asia -- and had a beautiful wedding anniversary celebration while enjoying shopping and stuffing ourselves with the tasteful offers in the different restaurants and food stalls around the mall.

Since I was the one who forgot our wedding anniversary this year, I paid everything :D Which was rewarded with, 'Mama, when is your next wedding anniversary? Let's do this again.'

That's precious!

Monday, August 23, 2010

But they look normal!

The girls dont usually stay around when it is my turn to watch the news on television; but a few nights ago, they did.

There they saw the uniformed policemen chasing the supposedly bad guys; whom they cornered, handcuffed and presented to the television crews.

And the bad guys were wearing t-shirts and jeans, sweating and asking for forgiveness.

IC asked me, 'Who are those in t-shirts and jeans?'

I told her that those are the bad guys. 'But they look normal to me.'

MC, who's been listening, repeated,  'They are normal people. Dont bad guys always wear black?'

I smiled and told her those bad guys in black are mostly actors acting as bad guys; and mostly found not in real life.

So I gathered my girls around me and told them that sometimes, you wont know if a person is good or bad just by looking at them. Nor would you know that they would do harm if they are wearing black clothes.

The best thing to do is this. Just be careful and be aware of your sorroundings.

When something or someone or a place makes you uncomfortable, let us know. Talk about it. Always talk about it.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

There's a snake in our garden!

Dont we just get stranger visitors these past weeks?
First those burglars, then the snake!

Early morning, our househelp was tending the garden. A thing she normally get busy without any major problems; though we always tell her to be careful in those wires around the mango tree.

This particular morning, she came to me a little excited and a bit off color, 'Ma'am, you know what, I saw a baby snake under the big pot in the garden!'

Yiiiii, I got scared in that second, too and immediately asked her what she did to the snake!

She was trying to use a stone to bash the snake, but it turned out that the snake was not affected at all. Good thing another guy came to help her. They were able to place the snake inside a bottle, alive!

So, my dilemma then was; should I tell the girls or not? I wouldnt want them to refrain from stepping out in our garden just because of that snake! I told my husband and both of use decided, it is good for the girls to know so that they would be more careful.

Both girls gingerly walked to where the bottle with the snake is located; examined it with disgust and left. But not before listening to our lecture:

- If they are looking for things around the garden especially in the bushes; they better make loud noises to scare those snakes away
- Use sticks and tap them on the ground and use it to clear those bushes if searching for something
- Better make giant steps that would create noise when playing around the garden
- Avoid overgrown bushes and tall grasses
- Do not lift any big stones or big pots that has long been left untouched
- Do not hop on logs and big stones in unfamiliar sorroundings
- Wear pants and shoes when playing on a field
- And on encountering a snake, get out of the way, fast!

When I was a teen-ager, (that was a long, long time ago) we encountered a snake while looking for a place to picnic. Actually, it was a cobra and was ready to strike. Good thing everybody moved out of the way fast! Even the older ones were able to jump a fence withour breaking anything; when a few minutes before that they were already complaining they cannot walk anymore :D

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Get well soon, Opa!

Dear Opa (Grandpa),

We heard you would be admitted in the hospital.

We heard you would be operated on.

We heard you wanted something from the girls.

The girls heard you wanted something from them.

They asked for papers and pens; tubes of paste, whatever they could grab to create something to make you feel better.

They agreed to create 'story books' of what has happened and what is happening to them here. A country 8,000 miles away from you.

They fought for colors, demanded more items, and concentrated on their monumental task on hand -- to make Opa feel better.

After a few minutes -- they had enough -- although their story books are not yet done. But being reminded that those books would be sent through snail post; they went back and were able to finish their crafts in an hour.

The wrote notes and sealed the envelop with happy thoughts and a happy sigh, 'We are glad Opa would feel much, much better now,' they both agreed.

Opa, you were admitted in the hospital; operated on and was declared in good condition. The next day, you received the girls' 'feel much, much better' envelope full of stories.

Indeed, that envelope did its job -- filled with love to make you feel much, much better.

And yes, you asked for new photos of the girls. Those photos would be there in a few days -- marked with much, much love.

We love you, Opa!

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Black Sand

Took-off for a short vacation on the beach.

We were the only one occupying the beach resort.

It is rainy season. The waves are high. The sand is black.

On the other hand -- we have the beach for ourselves; the water is warm; the sun showed up, too.

Now the black sand. I thought the girls would find it 'dirty'. Well, that's what I thought.

The girls loved the black sand. They said it looks exactly like mud. It would be fun to build castles with; to lather themselves with; to throw mud at each other; to cover themselves with.

What a great idea! I followed their lead and came up with my own beauty and wellness regimen on the beach. I covered my body with the black sand and started massaging and rubbing  it all over. In fact, I got the attention of the girls that they offered to become my beauty and wellness assistants. We ended up looking like muddy wrestlers; but I guess we had more fun!

The highlight of this wellness massage would be facing the waves to wash the sand off our body. That was another good idea because that means the girls have conquered their fear of the waves. But of course, there were some precautions:

- Although we are alone on the beach, we always make sure that the lifeguard is present whenever we head off to the beach
- We take note of the color coding warnings if the beach would be safe
- Although it is rainy season, we never forgot to pack our sun protection items: sun cream, huts, t-shirts, tent and loads of drinking water
- We always watch out not only for the weater forecasts but also for the natural weather signs: the looming gray clouds on the horizon -- to let us know if its time to go back to our room

And yes, they got to play in the rain, too!