Cebu to Manila tomorrow lunchtime. It used to really excite me going back to the place I grew up in. That was before Cebu had the Ayala & SM malls & the rows of entertainment bars & restos. Before, I couldn't imagine myself living anywhere else in the Philippines. Nothing compared to Manila where I had my family & friends from way way back. Moving to Cebu didn't come easy. I felt a major part of me was left behind. Now eleven blissful married years (wow that long na?...), and two adorable kids after, I dread going back to my old place. If not for my family, friends and occasional official trips to one of Asia's most densely populated cities, I'd rather stay home. Cebu is my home now.


Spent most of Saturday working on Matt's science project with him. He's supposed to make a lantern from recycled materials, so, we decided to make some recycled paper. Matt's worked on some newspaper while Kyle chose some recycled pad paper - the one's with red & blue lines. Kyle's paper turned out to be really good looking, with small red & blue designs all over! Next, we used a glue gun and some barbecue sticks to design the lantern frame. Finally, we glued the recycled paper & colored papers onto the frame...chedeng... we have a lantern! Today, we're going to put on some of the finishing touches. Maybe some Christmas cutouts and a light! Its fun getting something done with the kids!

I had fun last night watching and "napping" over Harry Potter 2. We brought our own microwavable popcorn to the moviehouse! :) Matt's & Kyle's eyes were wide open till the movie ended at about 1130pm. When we got home Matt's even spent some time telling me the story of Harry Potter 1 before finally going to sleep. Linnor & I stayed up a little bit more, reading "blogs", redesigning the "gratitude" page, I reread the Jabez book, watched a little bit of tv - Brendan Fraser (sold his soul for 7 wishes) & Elizabeth Hurley (the devil, kuno, who gave the wishes). It was quite a funny movie!

I LOVE My Family! :)

Harry Potter 2

Had a movie date with my boys at SM. It was my first time to watch a Harry Potter movie (no kidding!). It had near flawless cinematic effects that were amazing especially with the kids. However, I found the movie too long at over 2 hours. There were a few instances that I was tempted to sleep (could also be because it was already late). Jerry was not lucky enough to fight the urge...hihihi...I'd say he spent quite a sum just to catch a few winks.

Prior to watching, I had biases about the movie (part 1 & 2). Emails being circulated say that kids shouldn't be watching this type of movie that dealt with wizardry & magic. Some emails went as far as saying that the author promoted witchcraft etc. Contrary to these so-called "warnings", I didn't find anything directly attacking the religion. In fact, I felt that this was just another "fantasy" film similar to the Star Wars series. Some people might have just over-reacted to the movie's popularity. I guess it all depends on how you look at it.



Cute!...Aint that true?!!! Saw this on Angel's Dance...



Make a Right onto "Believeth Blvd". Keep straight and go through the Green Light, which is Jesus Christ. From there, you must turn onto the "Bridge of Faith", which is over troubled water. When you get off the bridge, make a Right turn and Keep Straight.

You are on the "King's Highway"-- Heaven-bound. Keep going for three miles: One for the Father, One for the Son, and One for the Holy Ghost. Then exit off onto "Grace Blvd". From there, make a Right turn on "Gospel Lane". Keep Straight and then make another Right on "Prayer Road".

As you go on your way, Yield Not to the traffic on "Temptation Ave". Also, avoid SIN STREET because it is a DEAD END. Pass "Envy Drive" and "Hate Avenue". Also, pass "Hypocrisy Street", "Gossiping Lane", and "Backbiting Blvd." However, you have to go down "Long-suffering Lane", "Persecution Blvd.", and "Trials and Tribulations Ave.". But that's all right, because VICTORY Street is straight ahead! AMEN!


Sent by Joe Gatuslao

A married couple came to a counsellor for advice. No sooner were they seated, than they began speaking at the same time in a duel of criticisms. When they finally stopped for lack of breath, the counsellor suggested that now they tell each other all the good they see in one another. There was total silence.

Then each was given a ballpoint pen and a sheet of paper and told to write down something praiseworthy about the other. Neither of them wrote. They both sat and stared at the paper. After what seemed like a long time, the husband started to write something. At once the wife also began to write---fast and furiously.

Finally, the writing stopped. There was silence again. The wife pushed her paper over to the watching counsellor. He pushed it back signalling that she was to give it directly to her husband. She reluctantly shoved the paper halfway across the table. He took it and in turn, slid his paper towards his wife.

Each began to read. The counsellor watched...Soon a tear slid down the cheek of his wife. She crumpled the paper in her fist and held it tight. That proved that she treasured the sudden revelation of good things her husband had expressed about her. The whole atmosphere of the room changed. There was no need for anything to be said. Praise had healed a thousand wounds.

The husband and wife left arm in arm.


How can two become one? Only through kindness and love; never by selfishness and retaliation. In the mystery of marriage, God allows each partner to be a mystic melody. And in concert together, they become a beautiful harmony in His grand song.*

Harmony is pleasing
In music and in life;
What beauty when it resonates
In husband and in wife! **

Shared by Joe Gatuslao

(To my "bestest" friend and all-around partner, Jerky, I love you! You bring out the best in me! I hope I'm not anymore as "sungit/taray" as when you first met me. Mwamwa!)
Every day, every minute, every breath truly is a gift from God. ...Just blogging in...Looking forward to a beautiful day and a happy weekend...


Oooooh....busy busy day! A few things worth blogging...sold the wrought iron mosaic/glasstop table & 4 chairs today to my officemate and we are both happy with the deal. =) The set was far from trash but it's something that we do not really need. One man's "trash" is another man's treasure.


Praise the Lord! Woohoo! My adrenaline is rushing! St. Expeditus is again working after the 9-day novena that ended yesterday. Ideas are cropping up... The Holy Spirit is breathing fire into our brains. What else could it be? We couldn't take credit for something that's purely a blessing from above. Jerry and I, at this very moment, are working on a brilliant business idea...It's not anything grandiose or capital-intensive but it's a good start...Will post some more when things are more definite...


I came across a very lovely site today following through the fresh blogs links. Reading her blog motivated me to think about our many blessings. Jerry and I have been trying our best to glorify the LORD in all our actions. Miraculously throughout the years since we started to really make time for the LORD we have been blessed with a lot of things. Sure there were challenges along the way, but the thought that HE is always there to see us through and knowing that we only had to invoke the Holy Spirit for strength, wisdom, and discernment, we never really felt lost.

Our GOD is an awesome GOD. His generosity is great and we have proven this in a lot of ways. I pray that those who will have the chance to read this blog will be blessed as HE has always blessed us.
Incidentally, my sister's website can be found here. She insisted that I post her blog for comparison...hihihi...


Inspired by my sister's new site...I'm currently working on a new layout, thus there are a few quirks that need to be redone...
what a weekend that was! matt's got a surprise of his life...a new pair of nike! linnor bought it for him as an advance christmas gift! he has been modeling his shoes and bragging about its non-marking feature :) on saturday, we went to get the kids' report cards for the second quarter. matt is still a first honor, but he has to work a little more on his science...kyle got all excellent, but he has to work a little more on his class participation... saturday was also ayala's anniversary celebration, a lot of activities happened and a big crowd was at the mall, we were part of it too! :) we brought mommy out for dinner at shanghai bay (in banilad). the food was good and prices were actually very reasonable. "amah & kids" bonding opportunity! :) ...the fireworks at ayala fired off 30 minutes before schedule, good thing we were just nearby and we were able to catch most of it...on sunday, kyle had a slight fever but, we were still off to the beach - mar y cielo - with the flp managers. mar y cielo used to be such wonderful place, it's a shame coz i considered it one of the best beaches cebu ever had. we had a great time with the managers. it was great to see them having fun with their families, it was a great opportunity to swap goals, it was even better to just relax and get away from work!...a friend of mine lost his teenage daughter a few days ago! it really makes you wonder why life ends like that. on the other hand, it makes you realize that while life is in your hands you've got to make really good use of it coz you never know when you will lose it! spend time wisely...i tell myself everyday. i don't know how good a job i'm doin now...i guess, only time will tell!


Took Matthew & Kyle to Ayala mall last night. I noticed that Matt's attention was focused on the sports shops, particularly the shoes section. With me and Kyle tagging along, he went inside Park, Planet Sports, Athlete's Foot & Keri Ol to look at all the Nikes. A few times he said: "Ma, look at the price! Grabiha! They're all expensive!" *sigh* I remembered bringing them to malls a few years back when they were barely out of their toddler years and the only things that caught their attention were toys. And it didn't matter if the toys were cheap. It was already a joy to them to be able to bring home something from the toy store. Matt is already 9 and Kyle 6, now their interest includes computers & gizmos, gameboys & playstations, watches & shoes. *double sigh*. Time really flies when you're busy. I should be taking it slow to see them growing up. It's fun being able to relate with them. With GOD's constant guidance, prioritizing the more important things shouldn't be too difficult.
what a week that was! it breezed in...then out! i got a lot done this week, but it still seems like there's just sooo much to do! the "exit meeting" with PM was good...we were in biz with them for the past 40 or so years and we parted as friends, no other way i guess. our "exit pay" is actually generous, a gesture of a friend in biz. nov. 14 was my poppy's death anniversary, we all heard mass at sacred heart church and had a great dinner at golden cowrie...with kyle "spilling" most of what he ate! :) im starting over in flp with a new group! i believe that if i made 120cc in two months in 1999 i can do it again now! majority of the managers in cebu (about 40 plus) have bonded together and decided to help one another get through this challenging stage in the biz. my learning for the week. "it may not be your fault that you fell down, but its surely your fault if you don't get up, and get up, and get up, and get up!........"


The meeting Jerry had with Phillip Morris yesterday proved to be more beneficial to AUR. Thank GOD! PM gave a token that was way above Jerry's expectation. I'm glad for Mommy. Although still to be received in January 2003, the amount is really significant and would surely boost the retained earnings of the company.

Had a short talk with Christine Manuel of TMG this morning when she delivered my renewal check. I renewed my 2nd investment with them for another 6 months at 3%. With God's blessing, this new income will continue to provide us with the much needed cash flow. Learned from her too that today up to Sat., their interest for old investors (me included) would be 5% and that for P10k up, their rate is 2% if placed for a min. of 1mo. up to 5 months. Will try to look for partners today so I could maximize the high yield that is being offered up to Sat. :)


Jerry, Harley & Nicky discussed yesterday our options regarding the two properties (both transacted under our name although one is already paid for by Mama) and it seems that our only alternative is to sell the condo. Mama is amenable to this and in fact negotiated to buy another property in Manila if we are able to sell the condo at a good price. Our major prayer request now is for GOD to lead us to this elusive buyer who will buy the property at a fair price.

Brought Jerry to the airport this morning. He will be meeting with the Phillip Morris guys to finally end the distributorship contract that has been awarded to the family many years back. It's a bittersweet development for both parties after being in business for a long time. For the last 2 years or so, business with them has been stifling the family corporation because of the many changes imposed by PM. The family thought it wiser to give it up than to infuse more capitalization. On a brighter note, the Astro cigarettes which the family corporation chose to distribute in place of the more expensive Marlboro & Phillip Morris brands are selling very well in this part of the country. And I believe it's another God-given opportunity!


Finally put up all the trimmings! :)

Sunday morning, while we were looking at our new link (New Rosary Mysteries), the kids got interested and began asking questions about the Holy Rosary. We talked and ended up giving them their first rosaries. Matthew chose a dark wooden one which Jerry used to own. Kyle, in his excitement that he now owns a luminous plastic rosary, requested us to pray it. Picture this... at 830am on a fine Sunday morning, we were reciting the beautiful prayer...as a family. *sigh* I feel so blessed that we have kids like Matthew & Kyle...I pray that Jerry and I are able to set good examples for them to emulate and that they grow up to be inspirations to others as well.


There are sooo many things to thank for this week...a new outlet to sell snack box products, made good with my major financial obligations :), got to consolidate the flp office - maybe starting december, matt's good exam results & VIP award, kyle's equally good test results, good training with dr. ludgerio torres, new look on our wedding bands - had it dipped in white gold, and time with the family...there is also sooo much to look forward to!... with a lot of prayers, teamwork, and hardwork, nothing seems to be impossible. life is kinda hard to understand, "there is no oil without squeezing the olives; no wine without pressing the grapes; no fragrance without crushing the flower; so when you're pressured, God is just bringing out the best in you!"


Kyle had a hearty breakfast this morning not only because he had his favorite sardines in tomato sauce (hihihi) but also because I played Christmas music on CD. He is so excited about Christmas & keeps bugging me to decorate the tree that we put up last weekend. My fault, the past few nights when I got home, I always fell asleep even before I could start putting the trimmings... I will do it soon, Kyle, don't worry...! *wink*

I put new links on the left side bar (new rosary mysteries, daily gospel reading & reflection, etc.).....You're welcome to drop by and check out the new stuff...

Matthew is VIP (Very Inspiring Person) again for the month of October. He now has a total of 3 VIP certificates for this year. His quarterly test results (so far...Chinese test scores have not been announced yet) were all perfect. We attribute this great academic excellence to the Holy Spirit, who never ceases to guide us in everything that we do.


The day sailed smoothly yesterday...Thank GOD. Had to stay at work way after dinner with Matthew keeping me company. I submitted the financials by 9pm last night for today's A-Team meeting. I have yet to finish some other reports today such as aging report, agency billing update, merchants, airphil, pal, abs-cbn consolidated reports & bank recon (thanks to Ann for making my life a lot less hectic hihihi).

Yesterday 3pm was some sort of a reunion with Ann arriving first to give me the recon files. Then Dahlia next, to give me the rings I had dipped in white gold. We all spent some time talking about jewelry designs (hmmm...women! :D)...A few moments later, two ex-Islacom staff walked in for the recruitment of SkyInternet, Chat & Glenda. The former used to be my Acctg Asst... It was great catching up on each other's chika.

Earlier yesterday, I received an email from a former school/officemate, Eric Meim. It was a wonderful surprise to hear from him & see his pictures. Eric still looks good & very British now after being there for 7 years! I meant that as a compliment. :) Will send him a note in a while.

Came late for work today (not because I stayed late last night) . Had to pass by LTO to renew my driver's license (1 week overdue) as well as Jerry's (one month advance). We went through the SOPs which were not entirely new except for two. This time we had to undergo a drug test. And this time, one could claim the plastic license right away. No more waiting for months (yey!). The whole process took us 2 hours though and a total of P1400. I'm just glad it's over......


even before i read linnor's blog, i was already eating one of those hot packs of oishi!...i guess we just charge the three packs of oishi to "representation" :) so far, this has been quite a week! coz of monday's u.c. class sked mess up, i was able to identify irene's eatery as a possible outlet where we could sell our snack items. since monday we have been delivering burgers, hotdogs & sandwiches everyday...and they've sold out all our items each day! learned something new from eddy chai today, " one single tree can save a forest, but a single match can also burn the whole place" - don't let any negative thought, no matter how small, destroy what you have created!
Just had half of two packs a while ago of Oishi Spicy Seafood Snack (the other half is being feasted on by Matt and Kyle as I am blogging this!). I could still feel the sting in my mouth. Junnie/May, you should try this. It's HOT and yummy! Wonder what Jerry would say after he reads this & finds out I scored the packs from the Snack Box inventory....

Last Monday, together with some office staff, Jerry and I watched the advance screening of CHANGING LANES at SM Theater 2. Just some of the "perks" we get for placing ads with WRock. I am not a certified movie critic but I enjoyed it. Ben Affleck was convincing in his Wallstreet lawyer role but Samuel Jackson is still the better actor between the two.

Hmm...it's been a long time since Jerry and I watched a movie together (not counting the movies we watched with the kiddies)...It sure is a good way to break the monotony of our routine and- another excuse for me to eat junk food! Last Monday's movie "date" brought back fond memories of SGV-style lunch break at Greenbelt Cinema and Choriburgers!


Call it weird but Jerry and I were pretty excited that classes are on again. Jerry spent 4k to put together all the ingredients for today & tomorrow's snack sales at UC. As expected cash flow would be coming in in no time. By 9am, Jerry who was already at UC, called to bring me the "not-so-good" news. UC classes will begin on Nov. 11.

There were people we could easily pin the blame on but what's the point? We were already stuck with all the burgers, hotdogs & pizzas. I couldn't help but really ask GOD the message behind this. Jerry was evidently disappointed. Just then, an idea flashed thru my mind... I told him why don't we sell it at Mother's West Entry? Jerry had a better idea...He sold it to a cafeteria owned by one of Mary's employees. The cafeteria sold more than we expected! Probably, this was the message GOD wanted us to see... He surely moves in strange ways...


this long, long, long holiday turned out to be a "food trip holiday"! rai-rai-ken bento dinner on the 30th, for linnor's bday! peking duck & a whole lot of chinese goodies on the 30th lunch at grand majestic...dinner at sto. nino! lechon lunch on the 1st of november at sto. nino...buffet dinner at city sports with mary, the kids & mymy! kyle's swimming party with home cooked food - spaghetti, hotdogs, pizza, courtesy of "chef" jerry from tuscany! :) and bbq & ngo hiong from cheavers!...what i thought was a long, long, long vacation was not sooo long after all, after tomorrow, november 3, it's back to a working day! i'm really excited for the second semester of "snack box"!...going back to work! good, i have to try to lose some of the extra weight i've put on since this eating holiday began! linnor reminded me of something today, "if it is worth doing! it's worth doing well!
Just to recap the past few days, following are the things to be grateful for last Oct. 31:
:) My birthday lunch treat (Chinese buffet with Peking duck!) together with my in-laws, my maternal relatives, Pa & Ma... Wonderful to have both sides of the family together on special occasions like this.
:) Early & unharried trip to the cemetery (no hassle & no traffic)
:) Kyle's afternoon nap at the lobby of Waterfront Hotel
:) Matt & Kyle's Halloween face paint
:) Dinner at Mama Sol's
:) TV movie with Jerry (The Blair Witch Project 2? )

November 1
:) Lunch at Mama Sol's
:) Knowing that Lola Meding was all well after a bad fall that hurt her head & required 3-4 stitches
:) Shopping for Kyle's party giveaways
:) Buffet dinner at City Sports Club complete with halo-halo
:) Billiards with Jerry, Matt and Kyle

:) Makro shopping for Kyle's birthday food
:) Found & bought 2 coolers at SM
:) Lunch with my in-laws
:) Fetched Forden, Dahlia & kids from their house to bring them to Tuscania
:) Kyle's swimming party at the poolside (no clown, no balloons, no games but a lot of swimming kids, pabitin goodies and raffle gifts)
:) Seeing a lot of good friends again
:) Seeing a lot of the kids swimming, enjoying their raffle prizes
:) TV movie with Forden and Dahlia (Legally Blonde & Someone Like You)
:) Being able to blog


Thank GOD (for last Wednesday):
:) for Pa & Ma's safe arrival
:) for the chance to be able to treat our office staff to 25pcs ngohiong, 20pcs barbecue and 30pcs puso
:) for the full lunch at home with Pa & Ma complete with my birthday miswa
:) for the lovely European picture albums of Pa & Ma's recent trip
:) for the pretty & expensive cuckoo clock gift
:) for the joy of being together on a sunny afternoon
:) for my (Ikea-inspired) wicker living room set where we cuddled together
:) for my staff who were willing to take my forwarded calls as I took the whole day off
:) for the sumptuous Japanese bento meals for dinner
:) for all the birthday gifts and birthday greetings I received on my email & cellphone
:) for another year of life!

...and looking forward to more!...