Archive for February, 2006

Snow Eagle

This snow sculpture is located infront of the Legislative Building. I took the pictures when I went downtown last week. It was a bit cloudy then and there were light flurries. I wasn’t able to get a front shot because it was in the middle of Broadway Avenue and there was no pedestrian crossing on this side of the street. Besides, I wanted to get out of there fast as it was cold and my hands were freezing when I took my gloves off.

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February 27, 2006 at 9:54 pm 13 comments

The Paradox of Our Time


My 11-year old son, Ryan, will be celebrating his Confirmation this Spring. So, I am once again busy attending meetings to prepare him for this. During the first parents’ meeting, the catechetical coordinator read The Paradox of Our Time. She said that this was written by a student who had witnessed the Columbine shootings. But there is this website that claims otherwise.

The Paradox of Our Time

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints.

We spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time;

We have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry too quickly, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too seldom, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.

We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve added years to life, not life to years.

We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We’ve conquered outer space, but not inner space.

We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.

We’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice.

We write more, but learn less.

We plan more, but accomplish less.

We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait.

We build more computers to hold more information to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men, and short character; steep profits, and shallow relationships.

These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure, but less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.

These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer to quiet, to kill.

It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom; a time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.

Read more about The Paradox of Our Time at http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/paradox.asp

Aren’t they all true? Sad, but true.

These are the lines that struck me most, some apply to me and some I’m guilty of:

“We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time.”
“We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.”
“…stay up too late, get up too tired,…, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.”
“These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare.”
“These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.”

February 23, 2006 at 10:51 pm 8 comments

Chicken Adobo on Martha

It’s International Food Week on the Martha show and I was excited to hear Martha talk about the Philippines and our classic dish, chicken adobo. (Photo taken from www.marthastewart.com)

She invited Romy Dorotan, owner and chef of Manhattan’s Cendrillon, to cook chicken adobo. Romy’s recipe is very elaborate and even included coconut milk, which I didn’t know you can add to this dish. I cook mine only with soy sauce, vinegar, garlic and ground pepper.

Romy also brought his sous-chef, Perry Mamaril, who demonstrated how to grate the flesh of coconut from a coconut horse. I anxiously waited for him to squeeze the coconut milk from the cheesecloth. It brought back childhood memories when I saw people do this back home.

You can check out Romy’s chicken adobo recipe on Martha’s website. (Or click on the picture above.)

It makes me happy that a celebrity like Martha noticed the Philippines and our delicious dish. Also, on the show, a Filipino group called the Kinding Sindaw, performed the Butterfly dance.

The Martha show acknowledged that it was recorded prior to Friday’s devastating mudslide in the Philippines and that their thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by this tragedy. The Filipino community here in Winnipeg is also horrified by this news and is raising a disaster relief fund for the survivors of this tragedy.

February 21, 2006 at 11:12 pm 7 comments

Ryland’s Birthday Party

“She’s bossy.”

That’s what Ryland said when I asked him if he liked his new Grade 2 teacher, who just came back from Australia through the Teacher Exchange Program. I met Miss S before. She was Ryan’s Grade 2 teacher as well, and she didn’t seem bossy to me. I have also met Ryland’s classmates. He invited some of the boys last year at his 7th birthday party. And I’ve seen their behaviour – typical six- and seven-year old boys. I can understand why Ryland would see Miss S as bossy.

“She’s bossy.”

I wondered if that was how I came across Ryland’s friends as I watched the videotape of his 8th birthday party, which we celebrated last week. I noticed that my voice overpowered those of 11 seven- and eight-year olds. I had to speak my loudest in order to be heard by our little guests who were constantly talking.

After our experience last year, you’d think that I would have known better. But hey, it’s been a year. I have a very short long-term memory. I forgot.

He invited eight classmates last year. I should have cut down that number, but no. I couldn’t say no when he said that he wanted to invite 11 this time.

The parents started bringing the kids at around 1:00 p.m.

One dad said, “Is it really three hours long?”

“Yeah, it ends at 4:00 p.m.”

He must be thinking, Goodluck. Three hours with 11 rambunctious kids.

Another dad said, “Have fun!”

Oh yeah. I’m gonna have fun. If your definition of fun is trying to entertain and control 11 seven- and eight-year olds, nine boys and 2 girls.

All the guests arrived. First, we had pizzas. Nobody wanted the spaghetti nor the pancit (fried noodles), which I worked hard to cook earlier in the day.

After they ate, they wanted to go upstairs. “No, we won’t go in the bedrooms.” Ryland didn’t want them there because last year, they made a big mess and he wasn’t too happy about it.

They went downstairs in the basement but my husband sent them back upstairs after a few minutes. He said they were pushing and shoving and he was scared of what would happen to his stereo and speakers.

So that meant no Playstation games. I entertained them with board games. But they got bored too soon. Just before 2:00 p.m., I asked them if they wanted to watch Pokemon. Yes was the unanimous answer.

“We will watch downstairs but I want everybody to behave. Rule number 1, feet off the couch. Rule number 2, no pushing. Rule number 3, no running or jumping.”

So, for about half an hour, there was peace and quiet in the house.

Then it was time for cake. One boy kept dipping his finger in the cake.

Ancie said, “Mitchell, quit it.”

“Okay, everybody, look at the camera. Brody, Brody, look here. Okay guys, evvvvrybooody look heeeeere.” That last sentence was said in a very demanding voice.

“Guys, one more. Look at the camera.”

They loved the ice cream cake.

And then, it was piñata time.

“Guys, move back. Staaaay back.”

When the piñata broke, they scattered around to pick up the candies on the floor. I quickly picked up Mitchell before he got crushed by the bigger kids.

Last year, we had a petty theft during the piñata. So, I got smarter this time. I asked them to put all the candies in a bowl and we sorted it after wards. Everybody would get a fair share.

“Get one of each kind. Put them before you.”

“Guys, be nice.”

“Guys, one of each kind.”

“No, this is the same kind. You’re supposed to get only five candies. If you have more than five, that’s not right.”

Then I gave each one of them a goody bag with some more treats in it.

“Can we go upstairs now?”

“Oh, okay.”

My voice was a lot calmer when Ryland opened his presents. He let his friends play with some of his newly acquired toys while waiting for their parents.

Each one of the kids thanked Ryland before they left. One mom asked her son if he had a good time. He said yes. I think they really did have a good time. And I don’t really think that they found me bossy.

I always ask myself why go through with this every year, every kid’s birthday. I think always knew the answer all along. It’s the smile on my child’s face after every party. If they’re happy, then I’m also happy.

February 19, 2006 at 9:47 pm 7 comments

Winterpeg sights

Winnipeg has been nicknamed Winterpeg because of its cold and long winters. We are now in the deep freeze having temperatures of minus 28 C and windchill of minus 32. Brrr…. Here are some sights that are common here in the winter.

Plugs (and extension cords) sticking out of cars.

Mountains of snow.

Shoveled pathway walled by a pile of snow.

Drinks chilling on the snow.

Foggy eyeglasses. This happens when you’re outside in the frigid weather and then get inside a heated shelter. It’s such a hassle to wear glasses.

 

February 15, 2006 at 11:31 pm 9 comments

Tagged

Tagged by a not-so-desperate housewife

4 jobs I’ve had in my life
1. Accounting clerk
2. Junior accountant
3. Order filler
4. Benefits examiner

4 movies I could watch over and over again
1. The Never Ending Story (first movie that had a big impact on me)
(My kids have a big influence on the movies below.)
2. Toy Story (Ryland used to watch this everyday when he was about 3-4.)
3. Star Wars – The Phantom Menace (love the pod race)
4. The Harry Potter series (love the books, too)

4 Places I’ve lived
1. Noveleta, Cavite, Philippines
2. Pandacan, Manila, Philippines
3. Pasig, Manila, Philippines
4. Winnipeg, Canada
(I’ve also lived in Imus, Sampaloc, and Mandaluyong)

4 TV shows I love to watch
1. Survivor
2. Desperate Housewives
3. Dancing with the Stars
4. Oprah

4 Places I’ve been on vacation
1. Atimonan, Quezon
2. Atimonan, Quezon
3. Atimonan, Quezon
4. Baguio City
We used to go to Atimonan a lot when I was a little girl. I haven’t been on vacation since I went to Baguio with my mother when I was 24. 😦

4 websites I visit daily
1. Philstar.com
2. Yahoo mail
3. Pinoyblog.com
4. pinoyatbp.

4 of my favorite foods
1. Chicken Adobo
2. Pork Sinigang
3. Pancit bihon (see picture here)
4. Chocolates

4 places I’d rather be right now
I’m happy where I am right now but I wouldn’t mind going to these places.
1. In the office to have lunch and catch up with friends
2. Manila, to visit family and friends
3. Toronto, we’ve been planning to go visit an aunt there (and also sight-see) for the longest time
4. Florida, our parish priest just announced that he’s going there on vacation. Sounds like a fun place to be instead of being stuck here in minus 20 C degrees.

4 bloggers I’m tagging
1. Ange
2. Hsin
3. Bing
4. Watson

February 12, 2006 at 9:26 pm 6 comments

Boys just want to have fun

 

Excuse the mess in the boys’ room. I had to get a quick snapshot of Spiderman with Ryland’s sock over its head before Ryan discovered what his little brother did to his “action figure.” It’s not a doll, it’s an action figure. There are no dolls around the house because I don’t have any daughters, only sons.

Only in a house with sons will you see something like this. (Am I right, parents out there with daughters?) Only in a house with sons will you constantly hear kids talking about their private parts casually. Where else will you hear, “Mommy, Ryland is yucky. He showed his ‘titoy’ to our cousins.” Or “Mommy, you want to see my ‘titoy’? It’s standing up.” Only in a house with sons will you hear kids comparing their farts. The ones with sound are odourless and the soundless ones are stink bombs.

So you see, it’s fun to live with boys.

I’ve written the post below a while back.

Of sons and daughters

I only have sons and I don’t know what it’s like to have a daughter. I may have a slight idea because I was one of two daughters and I grew up with cousins who were mostly girls.

I’ve often been asked what it’s like to raise three boys and I usually say that I think it’s not that much different from raising girls. Of course, we don’t have Barbie dolls and frilly dresses hanging around the house. Instead, we have Hot Wheels cars, Lego pieces and action figures which we always find in every nook and corner of the house in spite of the boxes, drawers and containers that have been set aside for these toys.

My sister has daughters and I get a glimpse of how it is to have girls. I think it was about two or three weeks ago when I was at sis’ place. My nine-year old niece, Ancie, asked her Nanay if she could hug me, for no reason at all. Her Nanay said yes and Ancie hugged me. I hugged her back. I thought that was so sweet.

And that is one thing where boys are different from girls.

Last week, when R and I went to Ryan’s basketball practice, I noticed that Ryan (he’s 10 years old) pulled his arm away from mine when I was holding him as we crossed the street. It happened twice that day. Was it because he didn’t want people to see that his Mommy was holding him?

I do understand that he’s growing up and he’s starting to pull away, like his Kuya did. I should have been used to this by now but sometimes I still feel that pinch in my heart when it happens.

On the other hand, my seven-year old Ryland still lets me hold his hand when we go to his basketball practice/games or when we are out shopping or crossing the street. And you bet that I’m gonna hold on to him as long as he will let me.

Other related posts: Four boys and a mom, Oops, He did it again.

February 9, 2006 at 9:39 pm 8 comments

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