Birthdays · Celebrations · Family Traditions · Memoirs of a Mummy

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 “The Morning My Son Turned 5”

Aki's Preschool Years · Family Traditions

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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Continue reading “First Day High”

Celebrations and Family Traditions · Family Traditions

My Favorite Meal of the Week

What is your favorite meal of the week? Ours is definitely our Sunday breakfast in our picnic van. If you have been reading this blog long enough, you know how much I am a sucker for traditions and rituals.This new ritual that started around November last year is definitely something we will keep doing for as long as we can.  After the 6AM mass, we go to the parish multi-purpose hall where entrepreneurs from our area sell clothes (do check out the 20-25 pesos factory overrun underwears) and food. The food options are wonderful. And not to mention very affordable. I blogged about my finds here and here.

Friends, meet our picnic van, Iron Hyde. Don’t look at me. Franco came up with that name. Aki likes it though and thinks our trusty old van is a real Transformer.

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On Sunday mornings, we stick to our favorites which are lugaw with egg for me and Aki.
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For my husband who is pretending to be on a diet, an order of fried squid, kwekwek, lumpiang gulay, fresh buko juice and most of the time, another order of the deep fried squid.
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These are the memories that I want to look back at.   I want us to remember when Sundays were simple yet precious. I want Aki to remember how we, as a young family, appreciated the small things like the combination of ice cold buko juice and smoking hot lugaw, being part of a community and simply being together. Continue reading “My Favorite Meal of the Week”

Books · Celebrations · Christmas · Family Traditions · Memoirs of a Mummy

It is Starting to Feel Like Christmas!

Speaking of traditions, one of my favorite Christmas traditions is our holiday book collection. Every year, our collection grows and grows. When I was still starting this tradition, I’d buy books so long as they look interesting. Now, I only choose books that are age-appropriate and interest-related. Here are some of my newest finds.

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A Houseful of Christmas. The illustrations look familiar because this book came from the same illustrator who did Click, Clack, Moo. Unlike most Christmas book, Santa does not appear in this book. The story is about how Christmas brings the family together. Very Filipino. It reminds me of my family because in my mom’s house, even if there are only 3 rooms, we always have room for all my aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and nieces.

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The Twelve Days of Christmas. I love the vintage-ness of the hand drawings of this book.

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Santa’s Favorite Story

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Santa’s Book of Names. I got this book because the main character, Edward, is also a new reader, like Aki.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA Continue reading “It is Starting to Feel Like Christmas!”

Birthdays · Celebrations · Family Traditions · Memoirs of a Mummy

The Annual Birthday Photo Tradition

Hello you!

If you have been reading this online diary long enough, you probably already know that I am obsessed with family traditons. I like the idea of doing the same thing over and over until simple acts become treasured family memories. One of our birthday traditions is taking Aki’s annual birthday photos.

By the stairs
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It took at least 20 attempts to get this shot.

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Silhouette shots

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As you can see, Aki was not very cooperative. Here, he was running away from me.
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Continue reading “The Annual Birthday Photo Tradition”

Books · Christmas · Family Traditions · Maqui's Me Time · Memoirs of a Mummy · Mrs. Monologues

Favorite Holiday Moments 2012 {Part II}

Advance Merry Christmas! Here is 2nd half of the list of my favorite Christmas moments last year. Here is the part one in case you haven’t read it.

We bought two new books for our Christmas book collection.  If you like Little Mouse, The Red RipeStrawberry and the Big Hungry Bear, you will definitely like the twist in this follow up story.

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The other book was one of the best steals that I ever bought from Booksale. For only 120 bucks, I got the anniversary collector’s edition of Polar Express. Not only is it autographed by the author himself, it also comes with an audio book recorded by our favorite actor, Liam Neeson. It became a traditon for us to listen to the CD while browsing thru the pages on the weekends before Christmas

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I finally finally finally got myself a copy of the Martha Stewart’s Holiday bookazine. This is the magazine that I had been looking for. I remember when I first saw a copy in Booksale. It was already in the hands of another customer. I stalked the girl, hoping she won’t buy that magazine but she did. The wait was so worth it! I got so many doable ideas from this magazine

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Speaking of traditions, we added a new one – watching Christmas movies. Franco and I searched high and low to find movies related to the holidays but only got two. Arthur’s Christmas and Home Alone I. I know I should stop being scared of downloading from the net but I just can’t. I also know we’re the baddest of all bad parents for letting Aki watch a violent slapstick movie like Home Alone. I love that movie. Franco feels the same way. And Aki seems to have inherited his parent’s lack of taste in movies.

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Meeting Santa in person is also part of the holiday tradition list. As soon as it was our turn to take pictures with Santa, here is way Aki said: Hey Santa, where’s my Beyblade?! hahaha. Santa was lost for words.

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Aki’s first school presentation! Yey! But it was another bad parent moment for me! I was worried if people would notice that Aki was wearing a pair of light brown shorts instead of white, which was the instructions in the memo given weeks before. Good news, no one seemed to notice. Bad news: Aki’s class was supposed to wear a green top and Aki was wearing a blue one. Naman! Aki looked so cute though. That performance confirmed that he got his non-talent in dancing from me. Hahaha

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We went to Ayala Triangle to watch the light show and have dinner with my mommy blogger friends, Sha, Maggie and Aimee.  These are the only decent pictures that I have.

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Nevertheless, it was a fun evening filled with lights, laughter, failed exchange gifts, cakepops and friendship. Sha, who is talkative online and offline, blogged about it here

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Continue reading “Favorite Holiday Moments 2012 {Part II}”

Books · Christmas · Family Traditions · Food · Maqui's Me Time · Memoirs of a Mummy · Mrs. Monologues

Favorite Holiday Moments 2012 {Part I}

I know. I know. Christmas posts are so 2 months ago. I was really busy during the holidays and was even busier when I returned to work.

Here is the Part I of my favorite moments last December.

1. Making ornaments for our white Christmas tree. Blogged about it here.

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2. N@W Christmas party. It is always fun personally meeting online friends. Plus, Aki got a ninja shirt from the exchange gift. For a time, he wanted to wear the shirt all day everyday. Thank you so much Cheng. Recently, I learned that Laya loved the elephant watering can that we gave her. Yey!

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3. In Franco’s family, it has been a tradition to go to Malvar, Batangas to visit Lola Maring, Franco’s paternal grandmother every December 24th.

Here, Franco and Lolo Tay,are in a middle of an exciting chess game. I grabbed the camera and took a couple of shots because watching them made me realize how fortunate I am to be part of closely knit family that really enjoys each others company.

My wish is for Aki to grow up having the same close relationship with his dad.

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Oh, it has also been a tradition to have a family picture taken by the entrance door. The family has been doing this tradition even before Franco was born.

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4. Before Aki went to bed on the eve of Christmas, we left milk and oreos for Santa. Hopefully next year we will have time to make cookies from scratch.

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Continue reading “Favorite Holiday Moments 2012 {Part I}”

Christmas · Family Traditions · Memoirs of a Mummy · Mrs. Monologues · Musings of Madam-wannabee

2012: The Year that Was

A couple of hours before we officially welcomed 2013, Franco and I sat down to write ourselves a holiday card. We started this tradition in 2010. The idea is to reminisce the highlights and lowlights of the current year.

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Looking at the card, 2012 was a good year for us. In fact, when we were already in the lowlights part, we could only think of a few things. See notes on the side.

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So what were the highlights?

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Continue reading “2012: The Year that Was”

Birthdays · Family Traditions · Memoirs of a Mummy

The Annual Birthday Photo Tradition

is easier said than done! Read more about it here.

First, getting Aki to stay still for the camera is impossible. And two, when there are a lot of errands for the day,busy moms will forget all the poses.  I think we will be sticking to these three. They are the easiest to remember and recreate.

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At the top of the stairs

Continue reading “The Annual Birthday Photo Tradition”

Memoirs of a Mummy

First Day High

First-day-of-school posts are so two weeks ago but 2 weeks ago, I was really busy at work so I am only posting now.

I knew that the actual first day of school would be exciting and busy because of our first day traditions. What I did not expect was that on the night before, I would be panicking and stressed out. I only found out on that day that all the school supplies need to be labeled. All this time, I thought we only needed to label the envelope and the art box. After several trial sessions, I finally settled on this “lay out”.

One of the requirements was a baby picture. Where oh where did my baby go?

Of the traditions that we started, we were not able to continue getting a new haircut days before the first day. Aki was sick and cranky that weekend so a trip to the barbershop seemed extremely dangerous. I also decided not to get Aki a new bag and lunchbox because his old ones were still A-ok.

Anyhoot, the first order of the first day was breakfast! I have always wanted to try making whole wheat pancakes but I keep forgetting to buy whole wheat flour from the Indian grocery. Good thing I found a mix. The nutrition facts seem promising. While mixing our batter, Aki kept saying lulipap!

Here is our First Day of School pancakes.

I blogged about pancake letters here. I learned that the trick is to keep the batter thick so the letters won’t spread. It also helps to keep the ketchup dispensers close to the pan when you are squeezing out the letters.

I actually made meatballs which Aki refused to look at. The pancakes however were a big hit. Aki enjoyed eating them with his hands and creatively transforming the letters e.g. Y to V and h to n.

Special days like this one are made extra-special when you have cupcakes.

Ate Dorina bathed Aki while I made his baon. Here is newly bathed school boy with our first day of school sign.

Picture time! Continue reading “First Day High”