This is close to impossible but who knows? If we pray hard enough miracles may happen.


Had free buffet lunch at Cebu White Sands beach today. Food was okay, very filling, a lot of choices but nothing extraordinary. It was their marketing campaign to invite prospective clients to have a look-see of the place which according to Jerry used to be an exclusive resort. The resort is not as sprawling as the Shangrila Mactan but it is comparable with regard to the landscape and the facilities. The vacation lease option was pegged at P200,000 (discounted, regular price is P300,000) with P50,000 dp and balance payable in 36 months interest free. Benefits include membership for 20 years with 2 free nights every month (total 480 nights!) or 4 lunch buffets with free day use of facilities. The attractive part of the offer was the full flexibility it gives the member to transfer the benefits either as a gift, or through sale or rent of the benefits. To see how the resort kinda looks, check it out here. It was really quite a good package. We are inclined to get it if we can invite other parties to split the tab with us. Hehehe. Seriously...

Drove the Altis for the first time on the way to my mom-in-law's house. So this must be how Brad Pitt felt...
Heard the anticipated Mass at Sacred Heart Church for Jerry's Pa's birth anniversary. Thanks to the misalette, we were able to make out what the old priest seemed to be mumbling to himself. God bless him.
Shared a Japanese dinner with the whole clan on Jerry's side. Jerry, the kids and I had the ever-reliable bento boxes of Rai-rai-ken (sp?). Kyle spirited away half of my share of the ebi tempura while I had to give up half of my rice for Matt. Also, the resto gave complimentary slices of fresh mango, pineapple, and California maki.
The highest point yesterday was...the Altis arrived 2 days early! Never mind if we had to wait from 8am-230pm yesterday for the cargo ship to dock and finally unload the container vans.

Oh the heavens must be smiling down on me!


I have to blog this... I just have to blog this...

This morning, few minutes before I knocked off for lunch, the guard on duty handed me a document package. The sender's name wasn't familiar. It took a few seconds until I saw the return address.... TOYOTA BELAIR! It's the bill of lading of the Altis.
It's arriving on Monday!!!
New Layout

For a while there I thought I lost my commenting thingy for good... With a little more tweaks here and there I finally got to put it back. It's way past midnight and Jerry just walked in from his COC meeting. Time to hit the sack. Sweet dreams all!


Today's Positives

:) Hearing Kyle's voice (he calls me from home) on the other line to say: "Ma, can I play playstation? Please?"
:) The call from Verna of PSBank telling me that the home loan is on its final stages of processing
:) Verna asking me how much I would want to avail and for how long we intend to pay
:) 1.3M for 15yrs at 14k/mo interest not to exceed 12.5%. Not bad!
:) The thought that Mama will soon be able to buy the house she's been eyeing for a loooong time

(If my mother were blog savvy, my cell would be ringing the moment I post this!)
Short Break
I'm feeling the strains of having too much to do with so little time. I'm taking a short break. The downside of delegating much of my work to my staff is the numerous reports I have to check and review. I spend time making sure the reports I'm putting my name on is accurate.

On second thought, at least that's only half the time I would have spent if I had to do these reports myself. Another upside is I don't have to keep track of deadlines because they do the job like clockwork. I just have to review, approve and voila, press the send button.

Hmmm, I should quit complaining, right?....Teehee...
We had our appointment with the pediatrician and brought Matt & Kyle for their booster shots and oral vaccine. They had two shots each, one on each arm. Kyle was not too willing but we understood. Imagine getting pricked twice! After a few minutes of coaxing, he agreed to do it and was rewarded by Dr. Diaz with a plastic grasshopper and dinosaur, a lolly plus he got to keep the syringe (without the needle of course). Matt who is a lot bigger was brave enough to even remark: "Huh? That's all?". *shakes head* Ah boys!

It's summer time and the season brings with it a myriad of children's diseases, such as measles, chicken pox, mumps, the flu, and other viral infections. We didn't want to be caught unprepared hence the doctor's appointment. Also, the appointment was set to consult the doctor why Kyle fainted (well almost, according to his adviser he "fell on his knees") again last Friday. The urinalysis and EEG tests taken 2 weeks ago were all normal but his blood pressure was high at 120/70. We were told to have a CBC test done on him. That's going to be this Saturday and I pray it's also normal. Well, I guess this is our cue to start monitoring his diet and activities... Better tick off junkfood from the list.


We are proud of you Kyle! We love you! Mwah!


Did a time and motion study at work today to find out if indeed I'm able to use up 8 hours on official business. What did I find out? Less than 30 minutes of office email management, 30 minutes of signing vouchers and corporate checks, 1 hour of personal finance management (recon of my ATM and current accounts and scheduling of bills payment, etc.), 1 hour of official phone calls, and 5 hours of doing the revolving fund replenishment. The last activity is a mixture of clerical encoding and analysis. Spent an extra hour (over the 8 hours official time) sending files to Ann, printing the Western Union transaction details and giving last-minute instructions to Hazel on filing and auditing WU transactions. I purposely did not allow myself any distractions like peeking into my blog to update or see who dropped by, or read the newspapers (this one I did during my lunch break), or talk unnecessarily on the phone and yet I felt the day just passed me by.

Hmmm... I guess I have to do some more planning and delegating...


Started the day early so we could order the food for lunch. It's Kyle's graduation from pre-school today and we decided to bring some food to his A-mah's house to be shared with the Tito, Titas and cousins. It wasn't much. Just enough to celebrate the special day. Kyle received presents from his Si-ko and Sa-ko and was extremely excited about his new toy "Crush Gear" (the new craze these days after the Beyblades).

We got to school at the appointed time, 330pm and saw some friends there. His teacher, Madam Sarza rushed towards me to ask about Kyle. I said he was ok. Then what she said came as another surprise to me. She said Kyle fainted (for the second time) last Friday while they were onstage singing the Pambansang Awit. Together with the department head, she said they ran to where Kyle was and saw that he was already up after falling on his knees. Not taking any chances, they brought him to the clinic to have him rest. When he was up to it, they transferred him to a cooler place. They noticed that it was really warm where he was originally located. As I stood there listening to her, I swore I would bring him to his pediatrician on Monday or Tuesday to have Kyle tested some more. His EEG result two weeks ago was normal so there must be something else about him that needs to be attended to. The whole graduation ceremony, our eyes were glued to him as we silently hoped and prayed that no fainting episode will occur again.

We were glad to watch him sing together with his classmates the songs I Can't Smile Without You and Only Selfless Love. Then the awarding of the medals followed and we were just so proud of him! It was his second academic/conduct medal! He was also part of a select group of students who regaled the parents and guests with their melody horns. A little before 6pm, the distribution of diploma was over. We all had snacks at the City Sports Club courtesy of Kyle's A-ko.


Today I'm grateful for the following:

Jerry got back last night from Korea.
I saw a good movie by Nicole Kidman (The Others) on cable.
I'm here in the office blogging and enjoying the connection for free.
I'm halfway done with the Feb bank reconciliation (total 40+ accounts).
HRD already processed the shipment of our new Altis 1.6G (YEY!).
Kyle is graduating tomorrrow.
Kyle will be given an honor's medal (Ahem!).
Summer vacation officially starts today.
The thought of summer inspired me to change the colors of my layout to the colors of the beach!
White sands and blue skies...



Friday Five

1. If you had the chance to meet someone you've never met, from the past or present, who would it be? Saddam Hussein. It's hard to imagine how a person could conjure a vision of mass dectruction. He could be a perfect case to study. Another person that arouses my curiosity is the late Princess Diana. It would have been great to see her up close and wonder what Prince Charles disliked about her.

2. If you had to live in a different century, past or future, which would it be? It would have to be the 1950's when the Philippines was at its economic peak. It would also be interesting to see myself wearing those yards and yards of skirt. *does a pirouette* Wee!

3. If you had to move anywhere else on Earth, where would it be? After giving it some thought, I'd still prefer to be where I am now.

4. If you had to be a fictional character, who would it be? Hmmm...no idea....

5. If you had to live with having someone else's face as your own for the rest of your life, whose would it be? Ahhh, can't make up my mind... Julia Roberts? That way, I'd be paid multimillion dollars per film!

Hehe...Those were fun questions...
I would have wanted to blog earlier---- as in: days earlier...I just didn't have the time. Jerry left for a 3-day trip to Korea last Wednesday. And without him around, I double as a driver for our small snack counter and for Kyle as he attends his graduation (from pre-school) practice this week. When I do all these extra driving, I shorten my office hours (involuntarily) so work somehow overflows into my personal time at home (aka blogging).

Alas, the kids are now sleeping soundly and I just spent some time managing my inbox. I haven't finished yet and my inbox is still 60% of total capacity but heck, my blog seems to be egging me to start pounding away. So here...

The theme of my blog is gratitude (in case you didn't know). It is my space to write about our appreciation of the big and small things that we are blessed with. However listing them all here is not my intention, but to highlight only a few. Like today, I'm especially glad that I didn't discard my old reliable Panasonic GD75 cellular phone. Why, you might ask? Because yesterday I lost my Nokia 7650!!!! It's a long story. Just be careful you guys out there. These are tough times. In two days 2 of my friends plus myself became victims of these phone thieves from h*ll. But in keeping with my blog's theme, I wouldn't dwell on the negative *cringes and grimaces*. It's just a phone!!! Some people in some parts of the world have real pains to contend with...*dramatic pause*...


Haaay! A ton of paper was finally put to where they should belong---in the trash bin! Spent my morning in the office sorting out old memos and files and did some rearranging of my desk. Got rid of the clutter on my desktop finally after taking the hint from Ann who dropped by my office yesterday. The moment she asked, "Linnorias, ginagamit mo pa ba ang files mo dito?", pointing at my red doc file and 2-layer paper tray which I haven't looked into for at least A YEAR...that was my cue! I told myself, alright, I'd do some decluttering ASAP!

Did that this morning and finished just about an hour ago. I saw some memo for follow-up dated 2001, some old sopps that never got filed, old requests that never got answered or replied to (hehehe), some office pictures of contract signing, calling cards, and a whole gamut of postit notes/scratch I don't even recall for what purpose.

Now my desk is neat. For how long I'll be able to keep it that way, that's reserved for another day's post!


Friday Five

1. Do you like talking on the phone? Why or why not? Not really. At least not as much as before when there was a limited means to communicate. Right now there's SMS, email and the tagboard!

2. Who is the last person you talked to on the phone? Jerry (on the cellphone)

3. About how many telephones do you have at home? 1 landline (plus 2 mobile phones)

4. Have you encountered anyone who has really bad phone manners? What happened? Yes.

5. Would you rather pick up the phone and call someone or write them an e-mail or a letter? Why or why not? Yes, but only if it's urgent or a discussion is necessary. Otherwise, email or sms is the way to go.


Good Dai Mite!!!

It's been almost 6 years when I first met my friend at work. We were both hired and trained on the same day and even shared the same hotel room that time in 1997. We stuck it out amidst changes in management. We counted on each other (and on our counterparts Chito and Leo) for support everytime there were changes in procedures that adversely affected our work. We felt that together, we were always a force to reckon with. The Directors or the GSMs wouldn't be able to function effectively and efficiently without us. (HA!) That's one reason they didn't want us around during monthly meetings (hehe). We were always the noisy (and thinking!) bunch!

Today is the last working day of my good friend. Del is moving on with her family to Australia. It's a bittersweet occasion I'm sure especially the thought of leaving everything behind for a new (and hopefully better) life in a foreign land. I wish you dear friend the best of what Australia could give you and your family. Good Dai !!!


Happy birthday Junnie!!!
Happy birthday Junnie!!!
Happy birthday!!! Happy birthday!!!
Happy birthday JUNNIE!!!

This or That Tuesday

1. Married or single? Married
2. Knit or crochet? Crochet
3. Homebody or world traveller? Homebody but would love to be a world traveller (on a whim)
4. "Star Search" or "American Idol"? Neither
5. Dancing or karaoke? Sorry, neither
6. Elvis Presley or Elvis Costello? Neither (that's 3 out of 10)
7. Bus or train? Bus
8. Batman or Superman? Superman
9. Chocolate or vanilla? Vanilla
10. Which came first...the chicken or the egg? chicken! :)



Jerry flew to Bangkok early today. From the time the alarm sounded at 4AM, I was already up. It's only been 6 hours, I feel it's going to be a looong day. Since I would be driving the kids to school, I chose not to let Kyle attend his graduation practice to save me the trip of having to get him again at 10am. At the breakfast table, Kyle asked: 'Ma, why am I staying home?'. 'Papa's not here e. You're staying home today so that Mama wouldn't be spending a lot of time on the road.', I replied. Halfway through breakfast, Kyle blurted: 'Ah, I know! It's hard without Papa!'

He just took the words right out of my mouth! That was exactly how I felt.

By 645am, we were on our way to school. I made sure it was really early to avoid the stress of having to weave in traffic. A few minutes later, we dropped our househelp to get stocks for our snack counter. Matt was in school by 7am and I was in church by 710. While at Mass I was running a few things in my head when I suddenly froze! My goodness! I forgot to give Matt's lunch money! I was stunned for a few minutes until I noticed that I was the only one sitting. The rest of the people in church were standing!

After the last blessing, I hurried to get our househelp at the breadshop and sped to Matt's school again. The guards were understandably strict and did not let me in. Jerry who was at the airport waiting for his flight had to call the school to get clearance from the DOSS office. I went back again and appealed to the in-charge to let me bring Matt's lunch money to the office. They relented. What a relief!

Had to rush again to open the snack counter at UC before 830. Finally got to work at 845. At my desk, in front of my computer and piles of paper, Kyle's voice began to echo in my head: 'Ah I know, it's hard without Papa!'.



What do you say? Clever huh?


Friday Five on a Saturday (late!)

1. What was the last song you heard? Hmm...

2. What were the last two movies you saw? Two Weeks Notice and the story of Jimi Hendrix on cable(?)

3. What were the last three things you purchased? Computer monitor, paper supplies, printer ink cartridges - all for the office so I could use my credit card and get all the Mabuhay Miles I could accumulate!

4. What four things do you need to do this weekend? Submit my February financial reports, check out White Sands' offer, review Matt for his final quarter exams, arrange the family photos taken last Christmas that Junnie sent me

5. Who are the last five people you talked to? Junnie on the cell, May on SMS (if it counts), Matthew and our househelp Maritess on the phone, my staff Hazel.
Yesterday, we were rushing to get to school. I noticed that Kyle's breakfast plate was still half-full. 'Kyle! Why aren't you done yet?', I asked. 'I'm u-u (taking a cr-p) pa', he answered. Thinking that he wasn't able to finish his food because of lack of time, I offered him my sandwich as he walked to his school gate. 'Aai? I don't like lang.' He said refusing my offer. 'Sige na Kyle! Bring it with you. You might get hungry!'...However, I knew that their practice would only be until 10am so I conceded smiling at my waving boys.

By 9am as a I was deep into my report preparation, my phone rang. It was a male voice on the other line. The only words I could make out was CLINIC, ANDREW KYLE and suddenly thoughts raced thru my mind and instinctively I prayed: "Dear Lord, cover him with your Most Precious Blood and let the him be okay."

"Ma'am, your son Andrew (Kyle) was just brought in by his teacher (he was carried) because he fainted in the classroom." "How is he?, I asked. The rest of the conversation was a blur.

Kyle apparently fainted as they were practicing their graduation song. When we asked, he said his tummy was aching and the next thing he knew he was being brought to the clinic.

In the afternoon, we brought him to his pediatrician who advised us to have him undergo an EEG to check on his brain waves. She assured us though that there shouldn't be anything to worry about. If the result is favorable then it would just confirm that it was nothing but hypoglycemia (low sugar level).

This morning I called the pediatrician and was told that the EEG result was normal. Thank GOD!


This or That Tuesday on a Thursday (late!)

1. Soup or salad? Salad
2. Hot or cold sandwiches? Cold sandwiches
3. White or whole wheat bread (or rye, etc)? Whole wheat bread
4. Pack a lunch for work/school, or buy it? Neither. We go home for lunch with the kids.
5. If you eat out...fast-food chain, or mom & pop type place? Fastfood chain when with kids
6. Tuna or chicken salad? Chicken salad
7. Cheese: Swiss or cheddar (or American, etc)? Any
8. Mustard or mayo? Mustard since it's less (?) fattening
9. Sandwiches: wrap/pita pocket, or regular bread/roll? Wrap would have been less messy, but where I come from, regular bread is more common.
10. Sweet stuff: cookie/cake or fresh fruit?Fresh fruit (mango, cantaloupe, or banana)


1. Give God what's right --- not what's left.
2. Man's way leads to a hopeless end, God's way leads to an endless hope.
3. A lot of kneeling will keep you in good standing.
4. He who kneels before God can stand before anyone.
5. In the sentence of life, the devil may be a comma, but never let him be the period.
6. Don't put a question mark where God puts a period.
7. Are you wrinkled with burden? Come to church for a facelift.
8. When praying, don't give God instructions, just report for duty.
9. Don't wait for six strong men to take you to church.
10. We don't change God's message, His message changes us.
11. The church is prayer-conditioned.
12. When God ordains, He sustains.
13. Warning: Exposure to the Son may prevent burning!
14. Plan ahead -- it wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.
15. Most people want to serve God, but only in an advisory position.
16. Suffering from truth decay? Brush up on your Bible.
18. Exercise daily, walk with the Lord.
19. Nothing else ruins the truth than stretching it.
20. Compassion is difficult to give away because it keeps coming back.
21. He who angers you, controls you.
22. Worry is the darkroom in which negatives can develop.
23. Give Satan an inch and he'll be a ruler.
24. Read the Bible, it will scare the hell out of you.

I hope all Catholics out there fasted and abstained from meat. It was Ash Wednesday yesterday, the beginning of Lent. According to Monsignor Dakay, fasting or abstaining from meat is about self-control. It is knowing when to say no. Food is a basic need and when we are not able to say no to the temptation to indulge in our favorite meals, then it means it is even harder for us to say no to our negative attitude and behavior.

The list above was from Chito through email.


BUSIER Days Ahead
(Written at 2:15pm)

It's warm where I am right now. The kids and their cousins are in their A-ma's room while I am patiently waiting for Jerry in the sunken living room. He is so busy these days because of the upcoming ASPAC Convention in May. A lot of tourists (mostly Japanese) are expected to arrive and Jerry's group is busily closing the deals with the hotels, restaurants, resorts and other logistics. Plus, they have also been pre-preoccupied with the foreign Jaycee chapters who are sending their representatives to have a look-see of all possible venues. The latest I've heard is that Jerry has two more foreign trips scheduled prior to the convention. One for Bangkok and another trip to Korea. It's such a hectic sched but we are trying our best to keep our acts together especially when it comes to coordinating our scheds with the kids.

I'll be back in a while, Jerry's here now and we will try to squeeze in some quality family time before his next guest from Taiwan arrives at 7 tonight.


Gastronomical Treat???

Had one of those rare moments where I gave in to the lure of the tube. Huddled together in front of it, Matt, Kyle and I feasted (pun intended) our eyes on AXN's special feature (probably a replay) on the World's Freakiest Foods. We cringed and squirmed in our seats watching a mixture of weird and really weird items on the menu. There was a feature on a specialty store in the US that sold colored candies and chocolates laced with bugs! Imagine a tequila-flavored lolly with worm...flavored roach...choco covered cricket...crispy worms on cereal and milk...eek! The shop owner boasted that these bugs and crawlies were all home-cultured. Yeah right.

Then still from the US, a segment featured people having a ball! Chomping away, marinated, quadruple dipped in special sauces and fried to a crisp BULL's reproductive organ that is. Haha! And these cowboys even hold an annual event aptly called "Test*cl* Festival". *shakes head in amusement*

We saw how a prepped muskrat, a lacerated lizard, a grilled whole camel, kangaroo and crocodile meat etcetera were magically transformed to seemingly sumptuous fares...Ugh!

Oh not to be outdone, our very own Philippines was featured too. On the limelight was our native BALUT or duck's egg. Saw footages of people from PATEROS happily slurping the juice and munching the yoke and an 18-day old duck embryo. *gulp*

Well what can I say? Bon Appetit! Ack! Enough already!