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Christmas Tradition: Christmas Movie Marathon

Morning!

Yes, I am not yet done with my Christmas series. Year 2014 was a year of blogging backlogs. Hopefully, 2015 will be different.

One of my favorite memories from the last season is enjoying a cup of hot choco, either Swiss Miss or Malagos, while watching a Christmas movie. For my very forgetful brain’s sake, here are the movies that I plan to watch again with Aki come December. Continue reading

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Oh Christmas Trees! Oh Christmas Trees!

First of all, I want to greet everyone who will get to read this post a Merry Merry Merry Christmas! I hope you are able to celebrate the season with less stress and more meaning.

 

We kicked off the holiday season on the weekend after my birthday when we put up our trees. Yes, with an S. We bought a tiny tree when we moved in back in 2010. In 2012, we bought a proper tree, a white one. I was in loved with it until in 2013, when we took it out of the box, we discovered an epidemic that has been affecting thousands of fake white trees. Parts of our tree turned yellow  and dirty white. I was so disappointed that I lost the excitement of decorating for the holidays. There were other reasons of course, work for one, but I took the yellow tree as a sign to lie low on my Christmas decors.

This year, I promised myself that it will be different. As early as October, I have been turning down invitations to Christmas parties and get-togethers. We chose which ones  we’d attend. I wanted to make sure that we don’t get caught up with the busy-ness. I want to savor little quiet moments. The feeling that everything is falling into place when I fold corners and sides while gift wrapping… The fuzzy feeling when I drink hot chocolate in our holiday oversized mug… The silliness when Aki closes his eyes and sings Star ng Pasko in his made-up no-sense lyrics…Watching the snowman in our failed DIY snowglobe float…Reading heartwarming notes on gift tags… Swing dancing with Franco in the tune of All I Want for Christmas. I am lucky to be married to a DI  or dance instructor. Seriously, he can dance. He has the grace and timing that both Aki and I do not have. Haha. I’d love to post a password protected video here for posterity’s sake but the MB size is just too much for my free wordpress account.

 

Oh wait, back to our Christmas trees. Even though Christmas songs were playing loudly, the overall feeling on the night that we put up our trees was peace especially when the lights were turned on. Continue reading

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Our Advent Calendar Christmas Tree

We are celebrating Christmas differently this year.  Less Santa, more Baby Jesus. Less materialism, more meaning. More sharing. More thanksgiving. More reflection.  Last year, I got so caught up with the busy-ness of the holidays — gift shopping, get togethers left and right, traffic etc.  Sure I won several items in the raffles and we got 3 hamons. But the hustle and bustle left me feeling empty and exhausted. This December, I have turned down several  parties especially those that fall on weekends. I want to spend more time and make beautiful memories with the people who matter most. I also decided to tone down on Santa and make sure that we acknowledge the real reason for the season.

Our peg this Christmas is the little drummer boy. I am sure you know the song but have you ever really listened to the lyrics?

Come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum
A new born King to see, pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pum pum pum,
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

So to honour Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
When we come.

Little Baby, pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too, pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring, pa rum pum pum pum
That’s fit to give a king, pa rum pum pum
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

Shall I play for you, pa rum pum pum pum,
On my drum?

Mary nodded, pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my best for Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

Then He smiled at me, pa rum pum pum pum
Me and my drum.

If Jesus wanted a glamorous birthday, he could have chosen to be born in a hotel, right? He was born in a stable and was happy with the poor boy’s simple performance. That to me speaks a lot about how Jesus wants me to celebrate his birthday.

If you also have a Christmas book collection, I highly recommend the Little Drummer Boy book by Ezra Keats.

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Annual Birthday Photo Tradition

One of the family traditions that I hold dear is the annual birthday picture taking that we do for Aki. Unlike some kids, Aki does not pose for the camera. His one-two-three-say-cheese smile looks forced… which actually is the case. Hehe. So why do we continue this tradition? Because I said so. Seriously, the boys can’t wait to go about their businesses and are very vocal that they hate being stopped just for pictures. It also does not help that I, being slightly perfectionist, take a lot of their time because we can’t move one until we have that perfect shot, right? Sorry, Aki but one day, I know you will thank me.

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The Morning My Son Turned 5

About a month ago, my little  bunny turned five years old! Can you believe it?!

I am very much aware that in a few short years, he is going to mature and change. I see it my in nephews and nieces. Rocky at 8 years old, does not want to  wear Halloween costumes anymore.  Jyl, our preteen, is not as excited as she used to be about sleeping over in our house. Don’t get me wrong. I love my pamangkins. They are the sweetest nicest rowdiest kids ever. But I do miss the days when they were so easy to please and they were game for anything. So, while Aki is still at that magical stage, I want to make sure that we make as many beautiful memories as we can.

One of the family traditions that I hold dear is the little ceremony that we have on the morning of his birthday. On this day, I wake up early to set-up, around 4AM.  First, I take out the birthday crown from our keepsake box and prepare the birthday cupcake. This year, instead of a cupcake, we used a colorful jelly that I made. Continue reading

First Day High

Today, Aki went to school without Ate Doring or me, accompanying him. First time ever. The service van arrived 20 minutes earlier than schedule. Aki just stepped out of the bathroom. Ate and I dressed him in a hurry. He was holding one shoe, trying to figure out if it should go to left or to the right foot. I grabbed the shoe and put it on his foot. Aki got upset and said,” Mummy! You are not a good mommy. I want to wear the shoes by myself. I can do it.” That was the first time he told me that I am not good. I was stunned. I realized that I was not being a good parent by doing something for my son that he can do on his own. I apologized, removed his shoes and gave them to him. I went to the door and told the driver’s assistant that we will be out in a minute. When I turned around, Aki was already wearing his shoes. I gave him his bag, kissed him on the cheek, said I love you and whisked him away.

Hay hay. Where did that helpless demanding baby go?

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We have been preparing him for the big school since summer started. We have been telling him that he’d be going to the same school that his dad, uncles and most of his godfathers attended.

Our daily drills included writing his name and A to Z’s. We also have a lot of on-the-spot Q&A’s. What do you say if you have a classmate who looks different from everyone? What if you have a classmate who does not have friends? What if your classmates won’t let you join their game? What if your classmate can’t carry his things? What if you have a classmate who likes to play with dolls? What if someone tries to bully you? What do you when someone tries to punch you? I posted a snippet of our Q&A in my Instagram in case you want to see. I hope he remembers everything we taught him — friendliness, tolerance, handling rejection, and self-defence.

Days before school started, we went to his barber.

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Ate bought “aircool’ sandos and socks in the market.

I covered his books, wrote our last name on each side and taped the sharp corners. The only fun part  was when I slid my scissors thru the plastic cover but the rest of the process is just boring. I hate it when I realize too late that I did not allot enough allowance.

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Aki tried on his uniform.

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