Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Day 271: Teachers' Day 2010

In Chinese schools, Teachers' Day is celebrated on the birthday of the great Chinese thinker and philosopher, CONFUCIUS. This was a bit different from what I got used to as a young student since we usually paid tribute to our teachers on Valentine's Day. 

This year, the elementary students of BFCS paid homage to their teachers by singing the song, "Wind Beneath My Wings". It was a surprise presentation that the children themselves put together and practiced on their own which made it such a poignant part of the day's program.

To all teachers, thank you for partnering with us parents in assuring a quality education for our children so that they may all grow up as God-loving Christians full of potential, talent and ability to carve a wonderful future for this world.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Day 259: God's Perfect Gift

I was a young girl of 9 or 10 when I began scribbling the name Catherine Campos over and over on scratch pieces of paper.  I thought that the name was regal-sounding enough...exuding of class and money.  You see, growing up, I always had this notion or dream that by my mid-twenties I'd be married with 2.5 kids, living in my own dream house with a white picket fence, just a stone's throw away from my own folks.  I had images of Sunday brunches with the family...my kids being doted upon by Lolo and Lola every weekend.  This was what I thought life should be. Apparently, my ways are not God's ways...my thoughts are not His thoughts...I'd been planning my life dependent on what I thought was right...and God thought this shouldn't be.

Finding my life partner was a far cry from the "Mills & Boon"-ish love story I had always imagined it would be for me.  Whereas most of the women I knew got wooed with flowers and chocolates, went steady and dating with their boyfriends and eventually marrying them in a grand fashion... I had none of those. 

I found my other half in the most unlikely fashion that actually caused an uproar in both my personal and professional life.  He was NOT what I dreamed of.  I vowed never to date anyone a day younger than me - my requirement was he should be at least 3 years older.  Well, God thought it would be funny to make him nearly 5 years younger.  Mr. Right was supposed to be a smooth-talking, suave and confident young man...well, God gave me someone who had very little to say and yet when he does, he says the most amazing and smart things.  

As a teenager, I spent many nights in dreamland, forming scenes of extravagant candle-lit dinners, beautiful flowers and amazing gifts...after all, I was supposed to match up with a rich guy, right?  Well, God thought I should say goodbye to being a material girl and paired me with someone who was the breadwinner of his family - a hardworking young man tasked to send his brothers to school on the salary of an ordinary office worker.  

I always thought I'd be raising my family close to my parents and Sunday family lunches were to be the order of the week.  Well, God thought I'd be better off living independently from my folks, a good one-hour plane ride away and this is where he set me up to meet my match.

I planned my life in a straight line but the Lord made sure I experienced all the bumps and detours He made for me.  

I wanted a life filled with material wealth, comfort and security but God thought I needed to let go and instead experience what was important.

I wanted a dream house with a white picket fence but God thought I'd appreciate life more living in a rented space with the bathroom mapped like an outhouse.

I wanted 2.5 kids living close to their grandparents but God thought touching reunions would teach me and my 3 kids to value and appreciate parents and grandparents more.

I wanted a rich man to provide my every whim and wish but God thought what I needed was a smart, responsible and loving man who will instead teach me the value of hard work, money and true happiness. 

I wanted Mr. Right but God gave me someone who is far from perfect and yet in many ways is God's perfect gift to me...

To my dearest hubby...I thank God for His wisdom and for making it possible for me to meet you in this lifetime. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Day 258: Loo! Loo!

If there's one thing that baby CeeJae goes gaga over, it would be balloons.  These colorful orbs never fail to attract her eyes and she'd exclaim "Loo, loo...!" whenever she'd see any around her, even when it's more than ten feet away.

This is the reason why her attention holds up pretty well during birthday parties - she can't seem to take her eyes off the balloons.  And she's one smart little girl, she knows when the party's over and she'd tug at me to pull off a balloon or too hanging on the wall for her to bring home.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Day 257: Girl Power

Gal pals MARIELLA and CAITLIN take a brief break 
from play to pose for the camera.

One of the many gifts that membership to the BCBP has given our family is extended family. Living away from our respective families for many years now, there are times we long for camaraderie and support only family members can give.  We've found such in the community. Even our own children have found and made new friends.

God is truly good...all the time!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Day 256: Yummy Tater Treat

We love potatoes - in whatever shape, form or style. French fried, mashed, cubed or diced in a dish or simply made into crispy chips. Little CeeJae attacked this heaping plate of thin and crisp taters with gusto, savoring each crunchy and delicious bite. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Day 255: Weird Stash

There's a bunch of santan plants adorning the front facade of Kuya Jarred's school and it has become my eldest daughter's habit to pick a few santan flowers to bring home every time we drop off her kuya there every morning.

Well, I always thought she'd deconstruct each piece and try to taste the sweet nectar inside like I did when I was younger. However, I was surprised to find these drying up inside an old biscuit tin. So it seems my big princess Cailie has been keeping her stash of santan blooms to dry out. Well, I guess I need to teach her about that nectar thing one of these days.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Day 254: Flip-Flops

My favorite pair of casual footwear...the popular flip-flops. I love wearing them everywhere...so you can say I flip over my flops. 

Friday, September 10, 2010

Day 253: My Little Boy Scout

Entering primary school has brought in many firsts for my little man: 
  • spending whole day in school (when preschool used to be just half day)
  • wearing long trousers instead of shorts
  • fan-cooled room instead of an air-conditioned one
  • having more than 2 teachers (in preschool there was only 1 for English subjects and 1 for Chinese)
  • joining the out-of-town educational trip
and finally...
  • participating in scouting activities as a cub scout
Scouting is an alien topic for me as I grew up not knowing what it was all about. You see, scouting was not a compulsory subject during my elementary and high school days. In those days, scouting was considered as a club, where participation was voluntary. Well, here in Butuan, scouting is part of the curriculum. It was a sight to see my little man all dressed up in his Kab Scout uniform. 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Day 252: Best Buddies

Francis Ryan and Jarred Andrei first met as Kinder 1 classmates back in 2008. Ever since sharing a ride on a "trisikad" during BFCS' 20th Foundation Anniversary Parade (dressed as superheroes) and spending free time playing and running around, they've become inseparable friends. This school year, they've been spending more time hanging out even during weekends. Ryan would usually call at home and ask permission for Jarred to come over to his house for a playdate. On those days, I'd usually drop off my son in the morning and pick him up late in the evening. Somehow, that day together would sometimes seem to be not enough for these two young men as they'd ask for extension minutes of playtime. They'd usually go bike riding, swimming, play computer games and matchbox cars. It was at Ryan's massive backyard that Jarred first learned to ride a bike without the training wheels anymore. Recently, I heard my son mention the term "BFF" and for someone who's having difficulty with Pinoy terms, I was taken aback when he mentioned it. He said that's what his best friend Ryan told him they were...BFF - best friends forever...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Day 251: World-Famous Sponge

This little guy was one of the first ever cartoon characters that my son fell in love with as a toddler (I think he's tied with Diego & Dora for first place).

Having spent mornings watching Mr. Squarepants, I would usually have LSS and catch myself singing the phrase, "Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?"...gosh, even Mom got hooked by this yellow creature.

Well, over the years, SpongeBob has become a regular "creature" around the house, with all three of my children now who can easily identify him and his signature theme song.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Day 250: Family Royalty

...meet the family's tag team of mischief and street smart antics - Cailie & CeeJae, the two princesses who can wrap everyone around their little fingers. These two can be loud, boisterous and certainly attract attention wherever they go but both are also gifted with so much wit and charm, they never cease to amaze us. These two little girls love music, they adore singing and dancing, in whatever form and style. In our family, these two own the throne to royalty. 

Monday, September 6, 2010

Day 249: Fancy Footwork

Perfect coordination...super abdominal strength...pristine timing...and a prayer to not get wet...

These are the factors essential to successfully lift this container half-filled with water with just the use of feet and leg power. To sustain it in mid-air for a few seconds will really stretch your abdominal might to its limit. 

Well, the SUN Team did exactly that...and won this game.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Day 248: Sour Face!

Caitlin...still lovely and adorable even with such a sour face.
Remember the late comedians, Pugo and Tagak? Well, aside from being such great comic artists, they were both well-known for their award-winning "mukhasim" expressions for a popular vinegar commercial decades ago...

Well, my big princess makes her own sour face and I think she could give both comedians a run for their money...

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Day 247: Worship Night

Last night's experience during BCBP's Worship Night was something that truly renewed and strengthened my spiritual and prayer life. Understanding more about scripture and receiving God's word was an amazing experience.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Day 246: Pride and Joy

One of the gazillion things I love about being a mom is watching my children absorb the things they encounter everyday like sponges. Their learning potential is truly at its peak right now that they're in preschool and primary ages. 

Ever since starting formal school almost 3 years ago, Jarred Andrei, my firstborn, has developed in leaps and bounds from the very first time he held a pencil in his hand and attempted to write. Sure, he was an excellent verbal communicator but he was weak in reading and writing then. 

My little man has grown a lot since then and has achieved far greater than I have ever imagined he would. It was a mother's pride that nearly made me shed tears when I got up on stage to pin his ribbons during the 1st Quarter Recognition Day today. He was 2nd Honors in both the Chinese and English Departments. I was overwhelmed with joy as I saw that sparkle in his eye. It certainly made me think that all those hours labored over exam reviewers were well worth it.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Day 245: Boogie Night

Hubby and I are ballroom dancing freaks. Back in hubby's ex-company, we usually had our annual fix of dancing during the VisMin Christmas Party in Cebu. Oh my, we could go on dancing all night then. We didn't realize how much we missed dancing until the opportunity arose tonight during the 80th birthday celebration of our BCBP bro, Pediong Lumbres. 

Our three children were a sight to see - they were clapping and cheering us on. The eldest, Jarred, had that twinkle of pride in his eye as he watched Mom and Dad take the dance floor ("...Son, remind Dad and I to teach you the tricks of the trade when you get older, ok?).

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Day 244: Lanzones Season

You will know once the "-ber" months have arrived when you suddenly see a proliferation of fruit vendors selling lanzones (lansium domesticum). These fruits are ovoid orbs covered in light yellow leathery skin and the sweet flesh are divided into 5-6 segments or wedges. 

I remember childhood days in San Jose, Batangas enjoying these fleshy goodies as Lola Rosing would usually harvest them from her own trees during season. 

It's funny that my own kids enjoy eating lanzones and would usually ask to stop by the sidewalk fruit vendor to buy some. Even the littlest one, CeeJae loves the succulent and sweet flesh of lanzones.