Monday, August 29, 2005

My Nephews

My son has taken to drawing and coloring lately that he’s been spending most of his time sitting quietly just scribbling on various papers on his table. In one of his attempts to draw a man on a horse, one of my nephews, Pepe, drew it for him. I marveled at the way Pepe drew people and I learned later that this was how the anime characters looked like. I asked Pepe to show me some of his work and came to know that he’s been drawing and keeping a file of his artwork too. Somehow all the drawing and painting classes that he took when he was younger paid off.

I then asked my other nephew, Joaquin, what he likes doing now. He readily answered aikido, soccer and wanting to play in the Alaska Cup. Not really a tall dream for a boy of 6 who has seemingly boundless energy. I cannot even take a picture with him staying still for more than five seconds.

Although we live in a compound with my sister’s family and I have seen my nephews grow, it seems that like my children, these boys have grown in the blink of an eye. For this entry I would like to feature my 2 nephews and their present interests. Here you go, Joaquin and Pepe.
:"you make life fun" element by Jen Wilson of Scrapbook-bytes
:papers by Jen Wilson of Scrapbook-bytes; red wavy element by Carrie Stephens of Fishscraps

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

In My Father's Arms

Edwin and I watched "The Great Raid", a film based on the actual story of the successful rescue of more than 500 American POWs from a Japanese prison camp in Cabanatuan. Set in 1945, I was reminded how Filipinos lived during the war -- of how they were in constant fear of the Japanese soldiers who seemed to give no value to human life. Even now, my father who was then in his pre-teens, would recall the inhumane treatment the Filipinos suffered daily from the Japanese.

He often wondered how he and his sisters survived the war with little or no sustenance, severely impoverished as they were then. God, in His infinite love and generosity, allowed my father to live despite all the hardships he suffered during and after the war.

As we gathered for Dad’s 72nd birthday, I thank God that my parents are with us, and their grandchildren continue to enjoy the special kind of love only doting grandparents can give. For this entry, I have chosen to post a layout of a tender moment I captured on my father's birthday.
:papers by Denise Docherty

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Just for a Week

:Kraft paper by Katie Pertiet @ Designer Digitals
Paper mats by Dianne Rigdon @ SBB
silver paper clip by the digichick
When I was in grade school and high school, I remember dreading the quarterly exam week because it would mean being cooped up in the study room from one weekend to the next for intensive review of all class subjects. But one thing I looked forward to during the exam week (which my daughter apparently shares), was the half-day classes. This would mean lunch at home, a short nap perhaps, and a wee bit of phone chatting with some classmates, before taking on the daunting task of actually studying.

When my daughter stepped into grade 5, my husband and I gave her free reign on her studies. By then, we believed she had developed good study habits. Although she still asks occasional help on certain subjects, she has pretty much done well on her own, and still does us proud with her grades.
This last week saw her go through quarterly exams. No matter what the results are, and though we always hope for the best, we know that it is the heart and the discipline that she pours into her education which matter most in the end.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Have a Happy Birthday

It’s funny how birthdays bring out the best in us. I notice that “birthday celebrants” are generally happy and won’t let anything ruin their day. So what is so special about birthdays?

Well, history says that the tradition of celebrating birthdays started in Europe. At that time, evil spirits were said to be attracted to people on their birthdays. To ward them off, friends and family gather round and bear good wishes and thoughts to the birthday celebrant. Later, gifts were brought to make for a merrier occasion.
It was also said that at that time, only kings were worthy of celebrating their birthdays. This is probably why we have birthday crowns or hats worn during these parties. Eventually, even ordinary people including children who enjoyed them the most, celebrated their birthdays. Thus, the advent of birthday parties.

My son celebrated his 4th birthday last month, and like any other child his age, he looked forward to it even a month before. I chose to include in this entry not the usual birthday layout, but my memory of his joyful anticipation for this event. Here’s to you, son.

A Continuing Saga

:digital transfers by Denise Docherty; misprinted type brushes; wordart mine
I have heard almost unbelievable stories of women who can give birth in a matter of hours, even minutes, from start of labor. I envy these ladies, for I was not blessed with this gift. I was one of of those who had to stay in the labor room for 18 hours and experience the pains of pre-childbirth, before I can lay eyes on to my mind, two of the most magnificent of God's two children.
And so our adventure began: sleepless nights, visits to the pediatrician, baptism, first smile, change in formula, first tooth, strollers, first step, birthday parties, out-of-town trips, pre-school, countless good-byes before leaving for pre-school, and the list still goes on as I write this.
We all have our own lists, our own unique joys, our own adventures that unfold each day. We all keep them and ponder them in our hearts. But stories were made to be written and told. One day perhaps, in the not-so-distant future, I too will tell stories to faces who I hope will look like mine, about a baby girl and a baby boy who hold my heart in their hands.

Thursday, August 04, 2005


:digital papers and lace ribbon by Doris Castle

My life in these islands began in an obscure apartment building in Sta. Cruz, Manila. I grew up in what may be literally called an urban jungle. While I lived in the residential part of the building, the offices were just a few paces away and I remember being unable to indulge in the usual childhood play outside our apartment until after 5 pm. As with anything forbidden, these offices were curious places for me, and just nagged on me to explore them. One of these offices was a photography studio.

If I had enjoyed taking and looking at photographs then as I do now, I would have hang out in that studio more often. I don't remember much about that small photo studio except that it was run by a guy named "Taba", well, because he was healthy in a big way. I do remember though that my mother brought me to that place to document my birthdays and other special ocassions. Did these early photo sessions awaken my creative spirit? Nobody will know for sure...but I am so glad my Mother took the time to have my photos taken. Thank you, Mom. I will always cherish them.

"There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in."
-- Graham Greene