Sunday, September 28, 2008

When it rains... it pours...

I never knew Bato Bato Piks birthday will be this significant. Gifts keeps coming in. Sometimes it's a bit scary. The sneaky stork left a shoe box full of sunshine beside my door. It's darn and excruciatingly big. I bit my lip while I watch my daughter dance with joy. It's like Christmas for her.... hehe. This is way too much of a gift. It almost made us feel (well, mostly me) undeserving of such generosity. I would like to have a talk to the sneaky stork about this...

But first I'd like to celebrate this wonderful gift. I have to get my guilt behind and just be glad of such blessings. To my friend... our friendship is priceless.

As Emily Dickinson put it:

The Daisy follows soft the Sun ---

And when his golden walk is done -

Sits Shyly at his feet --

He - waking - finds the flower there -

Wherefore - Marauder - art thou thee?

Because, Sir, love is sweet!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Knock, Knock? Who's there? Brisingr!

My copy of Brisinger came knocking at my door the other day. It came out September 20 and I have to wait a while because Amazon has to mail it to me. So there were five days that left me longing specially when i pass by the bookstore at the mall and see them calling on me and saying ... "I'm here.. I know you want me... I know you need me... come get me..." Oh! Sheer torture! hehe

But it's here now... my new baby. I took some picture before I ruin it from reading. Can you see how handsome the dragon is? I still don't know who this dragon is but he (yes, i'm pretty sure or I wanna believe it's a HE! Indulge me for now...hehe) sure looks powerful and wise.

I am just starting to read. If I could just take a leave of absence from work just to read this. I am just so tired after work these days. I don't know when will my boss see that I need more resource so I can have a life. Maybe he needs more sleeping Ems at meetings...hehe.

Let's go back to my current obsession. This handsome dragon looks so cool on any background! I can't decide which one I like best.

K.. enough playing around. I should go and read to know about this Dragon.

I know what you're thinking Share! I know you read this book already and you're probably raring to tell me who this handsome dragon is but hold your horses! I waited five days for this book, I can definitely wait some more to get acquainted to it in a first hand basis.

*rubbing hands together* come here now Bisingr... we're going to bed! Let's get acquainted! ;)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Birthday Blog Questions and Answers... As Promised!

A friend sent me birthday blog questions. There are only 20 or more questions anyway, so how hard can that be? I read and read and read… my oh my… I felt like I’m in a quiz bee or something. Kidding aside… I promised her that I’m going to answer all her questions and blog about it. So, I’m just keeping a promise and hope that I will not make a fool out of myself …and or put the poor readers to sleep….

So here goes….


1. Of all the days, why September 20?

Hmmm… there’s no particular or special reason for the date. It could very well be the weather…hehe. This is quite true in a sense. September is the end of the summer season. People are slowly crawling back to their niches in anticipation of the cold weather ahead. It’s back to the cold days and school days and staying at home most of the time just gives the imagination an extra kick. It was also in September when my daughter said she wanted to have a Blog of her own. It was good that she is interested in writing because it’s the best way to express one self. I thought I should make a blog too, just to show them how things are done. A blog they can go in and read and know their Mom better.

2.Do you keep hard copies of your articles? Do you save each file in your HD?

Nope. I have not saved any in my HD. If for some reason, the www crashed to smithereens … I’m doomed.

3. You prefer to post articles that radiate positive outlook in life. Is there a time that you struggled to give positive light?

It’s a real struggle at times. There were times that I’m tempted to just rant and rant and complain. You know what? Life is a bed of roses! But these roses have thorns and once in awhile we get pricked. My children should be able to see not just the roses but the thorns as well to learn important lessons in life. Sometimes they need to see the dark to be able to appreciate the light. The only difference that I made is that I choose to express sadness, frustrations, and disappointments more in poetry.

4. Your posts are categorized as pictures, poetry, places, music, food, occasions, books, movies, etc. Do you have a favorite post for each category?

Wow… all posts are dear to my heart. Some of them are short and some of them are howling in excitement. I love my poetry… I like “Kuya Kuya”, “Mga Munti kong Anghel” at “Sino Ito”. In the food category, I like the Brazo de Mercedes the best. My favorite post in Sights and Places category is our trek at the Royal Botanical Gardens. Special occasions are meant to be special, Birthdays, anniversaries, etc.

5. Is there a post that you consider as the best entry/article?

Honestly, I need someone else to tell me this. My best entry is the one that really brought out the finest in me. Something that has exhausted all the best I can give it in terms of creativeness and resourcefulness.


1. Who is Em according to her blog?

Em is just an ordinary lady who longs to write about the things around her in a world completely different from where she was brought up. So, Em, I guess is a frustrated poet, a fan of fiction stories and a cook at heart. Em, If I could say this is also a hopeless romantic…lol

2. What are the lessons that you learned as a blogger?

I learned that distance is not a hindrance to friendship. I learned that if I keep throwing out there what I love doing, the universe will eventually reciprocate in kind. :) It’s from a famous quote of Ophra. This quote was shared to me by a popular blogger Senior Enrique and it just so true.

3. What do you consider as your greatest strength and biggest weakness as a blogger?

My weakness is my lack of confidence in writing. I definitely need to improve my creative writing ability. My strength?? Hehe…I can think of so many weaknesses but strength? Hmmm… if I really must think…. my strength is my unlimited imagination and having myself as my best fan. I love reading my posts over and over...

4. Has anything ever irritated you in blogosphere?

The blogosphere is as huge as the universe and as unpredictable. I surely came by blogs that I am not comfortable with. But it doesn’t mean they have no right to be there. It’s freedom of expression and I just need to respect that.

5. Please share with us your blogging routine.

Blogging routine? Some days I’m just totally too exhausted to blog. Being in a challenging work environment do takes its toll to my already growing old mind. But when I have good picture or a good idea in mind, tired or not, I will write something. Inspiration counts a lot too.


1. There are six bloggers in your blogroll. How did you stumble upon their blogs?

There’s only six there but they are so loved and treasured. The first blog that made it to my top picks was my friend’s blog from back home.

Then it was Senior Enrique’s Wish You were Here. I discovered his blog from my various blog-hopping stints. The way he writes his short stories and the many vivid pictures he has of back home is truly remarkable. I wish I could write as eloquent as him. He’s my creative writing guru.

Then there was Shift+7 blog. Owned by a warm, sweet, vivacious teacher who is simply contagious. Her blog tells about life, family, the true calling of being an educator, a lover of books and poetry. She left a comment about my poem and from then, friendship started and blossomed.

Then, there were this two travel blogs that I happen to frequent. I love the way they capture the beautiful places of back home. Lawstude and Escapo are my top travel blog picks. They take me to places I have never been or reminds me of places I’ve been. They are also gracious and respectful hosts.

The most recent one is a blog named “Where Life is full of Uncertainty”. I named the young owner Share. We share fondness of the same books and movies. We are both waiting for the arrival of our pre-ordered Brisingr book of Christopher Paolini.

2. You consider them as your friends. How do you define friendship that is technology-based and what makes it different from other kinds of friendships?

As I mentioned earlier, being far from someone will not hold back the friendship. The important thing is to maintain the communication and the love inside. I guess it’s a lot harder to not physically see each but the emotional intensity between communications always compensate for it.

3. Do you see yourself meeting them personally?

I will answer this with a phrase said to me by my very first best e-friend. “I am a realistic, and I do know that the chances of us meeting personally are not extremely in our favor. But at the same time I am a romantic, and I am open to the possibilities of whatever the future holds”. Awww!

3. Do they make a difference in your life? How?

Every friendship makes a difference in life. The value of friendship has transcended time and space. I have experienced the best and the worst in friendship. ehe… I will have to use the lyrics of Natasha Bedingfield song to describe the difference my e-friends make in my life:

“They take me away
A secret place
A sweet escape
To better days
A hiding place
Where nobody know
Where the river flows
And there no more lies
There’s only butterflies.”

4. Are there other bloggers that you admire aside from those in your blogroll?

Hmmm…there’s a cooking blog that I frequent only for the recipes. It’s unfortunate that I don’t have the luxury of time to check out other blogs. I’m sure there are more fantastic blogs out there waiting to be discovered.


1. What are your dreams for your children?

I only want them to be respectful of people around them. To value charity and service to the less fortunate. To find refuge and faith to the Lord. To love and be loved unconditionally.

2. How do you rate yourself as a mom?

Hmmm… another question that only my children could answer. All I can say is that I did my best. I'm a fussy mom, strict when it comes to studies and doing homeworks.

3. What do you miss most about the Philippines?

Too many to mention. I miss the food, I miss the beaches, I miss my friends and our gimmicks and happenings. I miss the laid back life in the provinces.

4. How do you cope up with work related stress?

After a stressful work, I always pass by the mall on my way home. So I guess shopping does it. Sometimes, I will subject myself to a cooking marathon.

5. Have you ever experienced racial discrimination?

Fortunately not.

6. You said once that you’re in your best element when you’re cooking. Are there other things that you feel passionate about?

Believe it or not. I am also passionate about teaching. There have not been any opportunity for me to do so but it’s the next best thing after cooking. LOL ... and shopping!

7. If you were a song, a movie and a day, what would you be?

The most challenging question! Songs have been a part of my life since I was young and i have always associated every phase of my life with a song. when I was in the University, my song was "Do You Know?". It goes like this, "do you know where you're going to? Do you like the things that life is showing you.. do you know...". I was completely clueless then...hehe. When i'm in love my song would be "Just Another Woman In Love". When I got heart broken my song was "Sad Movie". There was a phase in my life that I feel soo "I Will Survive". Now, I guess … I’d be “Happy” by Natasha Bedingfield.

If I’m a movie? Hmmm... this is tough for the only movie I watch are fiction, fantasy and comedy. Should I say Desperate Housewives??? LOL... Maybe Mama Mia... yes... i guess that's much better.

A day? A Wednesday! Did I just made that up?? Hehe… it’s a half way day of the week when the pull between work and home is balanced.

8. Who is your major influence in life?

Hmm… I should say most of my inspirations came from my faith in God.

9. What is the best advice that you can offer to anybody?

The same advice I give my children. Respect others, this goes to all people, to all living things, to your surroundings. Do your best and still be humble about it. Celebrate love and have faith in God.

10. What is your beauty secret?

My beauty secret? Love of family and friends….. :)


Whew!!!! Almost fell asleep !!!

I just re-read what I wrote above and I am tempted to remove it from this blog. I know that all these answers are not the greatest or the wisest. But, inspite of that, I have decided to leave it in. I guess all of you will be shocked at some of my answers and that if I don't hear from anyone again, that I have scared them off (either that or I have put you all to sleep). In any event, I do hope to hear from you.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bato Bato Piks Birthday Celebration!

Here it is! Finally! The pictures of the party!

The cake courtesy of Jules of Shift +7. The best of Goldilocks !

The food! I cooked 7 dishes on this day! Six of them in the picture.

This is a fovorite and the 7th dish!

Who could resist a game of pinata?? hehe

Happy Birthday Bato Bato Pik! Mommy loves you!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Shift +7 's gift to Bato Bato Pik!

I was surprised to receive this gift from a friend blogger. Well... I did sent out invitations right? And true enough she came, celebrate and brougth this gift. It's already 1:25 AM right now, morning of September 21. I just got home from a family get together to celebrate my nephews birthday. I cooked the whole day of the 20th and went straight to the venue. I felt a bit guilty for not posting an entry on the 20th but I do need to take care of family right? Anyway, I promised to celebrate my baby's (Bato Bato Pik) birthday for a week.

I will start with this gift that we received from Shift+7. The cake looks soooo scrumptious!

This is a very lovely gift. A photostory highlighting three themes. First is Batobato Pik's birthmonth of September with the September song. Second, is the birthday song itself with candle blowing. And third, the wishes... accompanied by the song "Til There was You".

I thank you Jules of Shift+7 for the wonderful gift. It's not easy to make photostories. I've tried it once and it takes alot of patience to connect pictures with the accompanying song. It takes time to split videos, insert pictures and be able to attach the perfect transitions and effects. I had been fortunate to see some of her other works. She's the master of photostories.

It seemed that saying thanks is not enough for this wonderful gift. For now, please accept it. In time, I maybe able to find the proper means of giving back to you ... all the wonderful things that you made me feel.

And I still owe you the 20 or more birthday questions that I have to answer. They will all be blogged. I'm actually looking forward to it.

Thank you!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Pre-Birthday Reflections....

It’s my baby’s first birthday! Yes, Bato Bato Pik will be one year on the 20th of September. It was exactly 8:01 pm when I posted my first entry entitled “Sino Ito” (Who is this?). It was the day I finally had the courage to share to the world wide web my piece of mind.

Why Bato Bato Pik? What’s behind the name? Bato Bato Pik is the Filipino equivalent of the “Rock, Paper, Scissor” game. Since this blog was made and dedicated to my two children, I thought I should get their attention through the game they are very familiar with. And with that, impart to them the lesson about choices. I made a poem, entitled "I Chose” to highlight this message. My objective is to let my children see and appreciate the beauty of free expression of thoughts through creative writing. To be able to articulate their emotions through pictures, poetry, places, music, food, occasions, books, movies... everything under the sun in a positive way. Not just being able to communicate but at the same time share the celebration of expression to others.

My Bato Bato Pik has acquired 3 faces. It's fortunate that a friend was able to save a screen shot of the original skin. It was born late summer of last year with a lighthouse skin. Slowly grew though winter. Slowly and surely. Threading the ebbs and tides of the world wide web.
Spring came and it shed it's birth skin, aquired this springy green color. Became more bold, acquired friends, acquired confidence and felt accepted.

Just recently, it changed to this color in time for the fall season.

After One year... after 143 posts.... where did it take me? Surprisingly, this blog has been my refuge, a sweet escape. It just takes me away, a secret place, to better days, a hiding place. It is a place I go, where nobody knows, where the rivers flows, no one cries and I call it home. The previous sentences are from a song which I associate so closely to my blog at the moment. I found relief from everyday drab, found respite from pent up sentiments, and most of all... found great friends from across the miles.

Bato Bato Pik is my pocketful of sunshine (as Natasha Bedingfield's song has aptly put it)!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Guess what's coming?? :)

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One Naked Apple

My daugther was helping me make apple pie this afternoon. She was peeling the apples when an idea popped into her head. Probably brought about the monotony of her task, she placed a newly peeled apple on top of another unpeeled apple, and said "there's your naked apple".

Next thing she took the above shot! What a shot!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

9/11 .. the terror that was

“Time is passing. Yet, for the United States of America, there will be no forgetting September the 11th. We will remember every rescuer who died in honor. We will remember every family that lives in grief. We will remember the fire and ash, the last phone calls, the funerals of the children. “

- President George W. Bush, November 11, 2001

I bowed my head today

Offered my deepest respect

My utmost reverence

to the innocent lives that was lost

Lost from terror and treachery

without concience and heart

I may not know them personally

but I feel the depth of their pain and hurt

their suffering and the agony...

I bowed my head in silence...


I can very much remember that day. I was off from work and a call came in telling me to hurry and open the TV and watch CNN. I stood there staring... i can't believe what I'm seeing. All that was coming out of my mouth was ... "no....., this is not happening". I was in Manila, Philippines.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My Sweet Escape

I bought dessert this evening. I thought I should treat myself and my children with some good old dessert made from heaven. After a tiresome work day of meetings of one after another. Of munching fries during a lunch meeting. Of rushing a presentation for the all hands meeting. I'm pretty beat up by the time i get home. My medecine? My sweet escape? There's nothing like a good piece of cake matched with a freshly brewed cup of coffee after dinner while relaxing on the couch.
Which dessert do you think is mine?
Such a sweet escape!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Remembering Lola

My grandma passed away
This 6th day of September
When the air is getting colder
And the night is getting longer

As a child I would remember her
A strict lola, ready to give an advice or two
I found myself following her around the kitchen
Learned to chop, peel and cook stew.

I watch her sew dresses from morning til night
She hauls me to the market for her sewing needs
She made me my first graduation dress
Complete with frills and ribbons and beads

She went away to Canada
But made sure she visits as much as she can
We missed her dress making and cooking
Even her long sermon to the whole clan

We met again in Canada
It’s nice to see her everyday again
It’s nice to see my children know her more
Hear her stories and her wise words

Today is the day my grandma left yet again
Today is the day she went to yet a better place
In time we will see ach other
To never never part again.
My grandmothers death anniversary was last Sept 6. It was 4 years ago. We had a mass offering in her name and spent some time with her at her resting place.
I dedicate this post to her momories.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Power of Two, A dedication

You gave new meaning to the word friendship
For someone like me who had doubts and misgivings
In a world full of adversities and uncertainties
You made me realize that not all is lost
That friendship is not something to be given up
But it’s something to put my hope on.

This is my way of thanking you and letting you know
My true and deep appreciation
From my heart to yours

You rock !

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Token, Token where shall we go?

This is my token of freedom.

I need at least two of this each work day.

If I want to stop by the coffee shop on my way to work,

Or I need to run an errand on my way home,

I will be needing one more.

A tiny token, can go as far as the eyes can see

From one bus to another,

From one bus to a subway train

From one train to another

The fare will be the same.

One weekend I felt like going to the Mall

Two little tokens willing to get me there

I waited for a bus infront of our house

One token is all the driver need.

The bus stopped at the subway

I transferred to a subway train

I passed through tunnels, dark and deep

Until it went up and I have to take the LRT

I see green and trees and my destination

One token all the way to the mall

One token to ride them all

It is amazing for one tiny token

To get me to my most desired places

and one more to get me home sweet home