The Benefits of Oregano

Oregano (Scientific name: Origanum vulgare) is also known as Wild Marjoram, Mountain Mint, Origanum, Wintersweet and Winter Marjoram.

Hand of Hope: Samuel Alexander Armas

A picture began circulating in November. It should be "The Picture of the Year," or perhaps, "Picture of the Decade." It won't be. In fact, unless you obtained a copy of the paper, you probably will never see it.

Tracey Connelley, Baby P's Evil Mom, Shows NO Remorse

I have never been affected by any story as much as Baby P's story has affected me. Yesterday evening, I found myself sobbing twice! I just can't get over the sheer horror of the story.

Baby P's Murderers -- Why Are They Being Protected?

In my country, it has never happened before that the media and the people have been forbidden to actually reveal the names and faces of TC and SB, the murderers of Baby P.

That Winter The Wind Blows Finale: Did Oh Soo Die?

Over the holy week break, I spent the entire four days just watching the 15 episodes of this Korean show. Yes, I am a self-confessed Korean drama addict. I already have my favorite actors and actresses; albeit, I don’t know their names.

May 30, 2008

Elisabeth Fritzi Interview

If you've come across my blog, you're probably looking for an update on Elisabeth Fritzi.
I am seriously keeping tabs of this story as well. The last I read was that story about Kristin finally waking up from her coma. Let's just hope she'll recover from the whole ordeal.

It was reported that Elisabeth Fritzi will give an Interview.
This news has been proven false by the family lawyer. It' s absurd actually. It's too soon.
Anyway, the family lawyer said that Elisabeth is not yet up for the whole brouhaha.
So, I guess that's it then. No interviews.
Let's just pray for her and her family.

May 29, 2008

To My Dearest Fan

I decided to delete my "angry/frustrated" post addressed to my "blog stalker".
I say a prayer instead that you find peace.
You need it very, very badly.
I guess you'd leave me alone only if you find happiness.
I hope you find it soon.
And I forgive you for doing whatever it is you're doing.
I doubt though if it's healthy.
You need help.

May 28, 2008

Paige and Cori

I just want to share this video.
You'd smile and you'd laugh. I promise.
Innocence and babies always do that to us.

That's my daughter tickling her cousin.

May 26, 2008

An Ode to a Good Friendship

This is a video of my friends with whom I went to school with.

I have been friends with Khristine since 2nd grade. I even missed a First Communion practice because I had to comfort her because she lost her front tooth while we were playing. Poor Tin! She had to wear a silver tooth for the next seven years. We used to nag her to give us the tooth so we could sell it.

I've been friends with the rest since 5th and 6th grade.

Yes, we are still friends 'til now.

May 25, 2008


I want to remind myself of the countless things that I should be grateful for. And I am humbled by the number of blessings I have. I am grateful for --

The way my daughter’s eyes crinkle when she smiles at me the minute I open my eyes. She would usually lie down beside me and sing, “Twinkle, twinkle little star” or would be doing some picture reading of her books while she waits for me to wake up. She’s magical to me. She is. I am eternally grateful.

Erbe. No words can describe how much I am grateful for having him. He bears with me, forgives me and at the end of the day loves me.

My mother, as you probably are grateful for yours.

Kris, my insanely outlandish sister. She never fails to amuse me with her crazy ideas. Just this afternoon she was nagging me to do underarm bleaching with her.

Faith. Because I never seem to lack any.

Sanity. One year of Sanity for my husband. No monsters. No evil. For whatever made him happy and for whatever made him sane.

Riza and Erbe’s aunts. For loving Erbe unconditionally.

Cori. She never fails to make me smile with her odd facial expressions. They say the apple does not really fall too far from the tree.

Acceptance – this is what Erbe needed the most. Thank you, God.

Peace of mind. I have this so I have everything.

McDo’s double cheeseburger. Just pure heaven.

Coffee Crumble Ice cream. I craved for it the whole day. I got it this evening.

Being able to sleep peacefully the whole night through last night because Erbe took care of Paige the whole night.

Kisses. Lots of it. From Erbe, Paige and my Mom. Yes, my mom, despite the fact that I’m 28 years old!

Grey’s Anatomy. Finally, Meredith and Derek are back together. The season ender was just great!

The fact that I know there is always “something wonderful” waiting for me. I’ve proven this.

That there are still people who are opposing war and poverty.

Taylor Swift. Her songs are good reminders of the good old days when I had a huge crush on my bestfriend.

Kindness. Because it still exists.

Ebay! I’ve just discovered the lovely benefits of Ebay!

Writing. Because I’m making a good living.

Friends. Just because I know they're there despite everything.

Lexine. For healing Nette's broken heart.

And finally, the fact that I still have so many things that I am grateful for but I just cannot write them all.

What about you? What are you grateful for?

May 24, 2008

Speaking of Hope

I hope the view over by the bridge in front of our house will never stop from taking my breath away.

I hope that each day gives me the opportunity to become a better wife, mother, child, sister, aunt, daughter and friend – a better human being.

I hope I’d get to eat that tuna pizza from my favorite Pizza Hut outlet in Brunei one more time.

I hope I’ll never have a bad dream again.

I hope I’d get the time to read the Linda Lael Miller book my sister and I just bought soon.

I hope my best friends, Sussette and Alano, have truly found their soul mates this time.

I hope Marlon also finds his.

I hope Ra-rye finds his as well.

I hope I’ll be able to complete all my Judith McNaught books soon.

I hope Julie Garwood stops writing that suspense thriller crap she’s writing these days; and she’ll realize she’s better off with her old genre.

I hope all my friends and loved ones, especially my aunts, would find peace and would finally experience that immeasurable happiness that I pray for them.

I hope I'd get to hang out with ALL my friends -- the closest and the dearest to my heart -- once again.

I hope the day will come when I will never ever worry about money again.

I hope the day will come when I will see everything as a blessing – even those that hurt or disappoint me.

I hope that someday I will be where I should be and I would be exactly who I should be.

I hope that my husband will never meet his monsters again.

I hope that my mother will outlive me.

I hope my daughter will grow up to be the best person that she can be.

I have so many hopes. Some will be left unspoken. What about you? What are you hoping for right now?

Wishing on a Star

If a tooth fairy stands before me tonight
Or if a star demands that I make a wish,
I’d say that I would like to have –

Snow. Just for freaking once in my whole 28 years of existence.

Not innocence. I’m far from being the Virgin Mary (forgive the blasphemy Lord) but I’d love to be reminded of innocence. Somehow, I think I have gotten this wish with my little girl’s kiss.

I’d like a Cowboy’s hat or the Mad Hatter’s Hat and I’d do a mean “Let’s Shock Alice” song and dance.

Release. I don’t care how you would interpret this. I want this.

A month of “I love ME” days.

“One more chance” for a lot of things and a lot of someone.

To win Monopoly 10 games in a row I’d like to get all the pass GO and collect 400 hundred dollars. I’d like to get the “Get Out of Jail Free” cards 10 times in a row. I’d like to get “Free Parking” every chance I got. I’d like to own all the railroads, water and electricity. I’d like to own Boardwalk and build my hotels. 10 times in a row!

To feel that God truly listens and to understand his reason for my “Why’s?”

A year supply of Chips Ahoy!

Lifetime supply of “inner peace”just as I have it now.

What about you? What do you want?

May 20, 2008

stupid me

I screwed up my blog.
I was trying to change the template and I ended up deleting everything!
Including all my links!
So I have to backtrack and look for everyone.
If you could help me out please --
leave a comment of your URL address so I could add it back.

May 18, 2008

Just Venting

I'm really, really exhausted.
I would love a week of doing nothing.
I would just love to read Judith McNaught books and then eat a lot of double dutch ice cream.
I would love to play Sims 2 for hours on end.
Sometimes, I just want to be selfish and think about myself and have things for myself --
without feeling that I need to share because I'm a wife or a mother.
I'm not having a nervous breakdown.
I'm just tired from working so hard. I've been working and working. I don't even have time to blog.
I need a break.

May 15, 2008

China's Death Tolls for Us All

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Today, the news said that death toll in China has risen to
20,000 families have lost their loved ones.
20,000 families are grieving. Half of them are waiting to have their children removed from the rubble.

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I am greatly saddened by this news.
At the same time, I am deeply thankful that I have my daughter sleeping beside me tonight; and I am guilty that I feel blessed.
I am not better than them.
I wonder how it works. I wonder why God decides the way He does.

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Reading the news and seeing the pictures, I was wondering,
"What were you thinking, God?"


It's the Great Flood all over again.
There was
no Noah's ark this time.
had a choice.

Charice Pempengco on Oprah

I didn't give her much notice when she was in that competition -- Little Big Star, I think. But my sister was gushing about her. My sister would come home after class running just so she could catch Charice performance. Back then, my sister already loved her and was rooting for her.

Anyways, here's the video of Charice on Oprah. The news said that Oprah invited her to come back to promote her CD. It didn't occur to me that anyone outside this country would want to buy her CD. Until I went on community and I read a comment asking where they could get Charice's CD.

They keep calling her a "force to reckon with" or the "future diva". Let's see, shall we? Her album is out in the market. I wonder if anybody here is even buying it. I hope they are.

Anyway, watch this video. She's amazing. Ironically, there are so many kids here who are as good as her. This reminds me of my bestfriend who moved to New Zealand. Everytime somebody would learn that she's from the Philippines. She'd be asked, "So you could sing then?"

May 11, 2008

Welcoming Nathania Lexie

I remember that day. I went to Lynette's house because I couldn't get hold of her. She wasn't answering my calls or messages and I didn't know what was wrong. Reaching her house, her mother came to the gate.

"She's not answering my calls or messages. Is something wrong?" I asked.

I didn't expect the answer. Her mom's face fell and she told us what happened to Nette --

"She got married a couple of months ago."


"She gave birth to her baby a month ago."



"She lost her baby a week after she gave birth."

We were standing there with our mouths gaping. And then what she said hit us hard. We started crying. It didn't even matter that Nette did not inform us that she got married or that she was pregnant or that she lost her baby -- all of those things didn't matter. What mattered was that she was hurting and we couldn't do anything for her.

The next time I saw Nette was when she went home for my wedding. It was only then that she opened up about everything; and she told me that she couldn't bring herself to go to Church because she was mad at God.

She said, "They say that God has his purpose. I don't understand why he had to take away my baby." I still remember how her face looked when she said this.

That was two years ago.

Now, Nette has Nathania Lexie -- my goddaughter. Life is beautiful.

May 8, 2008

A Prelude to Mother's Day - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

I've been tagged by Earth

Share your favorite Mother's Day quote and link your blog here:

1. Irresistible Fascinations / Naomi
2. Manna from Heaven/Lena
3.And Life Goes On/Lena
4. Mommyallehs up-close and personal/mommyallehs,
5. A Mother’s Stuff / Crissy.
6.Dance of Motherhood / Dette
7. Life and Me /Pinayjade
8. My Happiness Haven/Earthlingorgeous
9. The Life of an Oregano Addict/Piebuko

Now, I'm tagging -

1. Sphinx.
2. Sher
3. Dawn

4. Beth

May 7, 2008


Do you know this man?

This beast - a white man, shown with grey, thinning hair who appears to be in his late 40s or early 50s - makes no attempt to cover his face.

The brazen pervert is seen abusing at least three boys aged between six and 10, said Kristin Kvigne at Interpol's headquarters in Lyon.But she added: "It could be more."

It is believed he might have chosen to reveal his identity in win trust in child-sex offender circles, in hopes of getting access to other children or images.

Miss Kvigne said the photos show "severe abuse" by the man but she declined to go into detail.

Interpol said that despite two years of investigations, it and other police agencies have so far been unable to determine his identity, nationality or whereabouts - hence the decision to appeal publicly for information.

"The law enforcement community around the world has done all it can to find this man who clearly presents a danger to young children, and we are now asking the public to help identify this predator and protect other potential victims from abuse," Secretary General Ronald Noble said.

Okay, you may consider this a meme.
Please post this in your blog so that we could get the word out on this monster. He could be abusing children right now. It's scary how the world seems no longer safe for our children.

UPDATE: Tamera
said this maniac has been caught. Yipee!

Applauding Elisabeth Fritzi

It's funny.

If you'd search for Elisabeth Fritzi in Google, you'd end up with my blog. My traffic jumped and all because I wrote about Elisabeth Fritzi. Obviously, I'm not the only one obsessed with finding out what happened to Elisabeth and her children.

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Anyway, here are the latest updates:

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  • Police are worried that the granddaughter/daughter of Monster Fritzi with his daughter, Kerstin, may have been subjected to the same sexual abuse.
  • For the first nine years of confinement, Elisabeth and four of her children shared a single room where the Monster Fritzi repeatedly raped and violated her in front of the children almost three times a week.
  • Kerstin is doing better but is still unconscious. She still needs respiratory assistance.
  • Money are flooding in support of Elisabeth and her family. *Thank God.
  • Monster Fritzi is allegedly a regular of a local brothel where he was known for ordering prostitutes to play dead when having sex. *Go figure.
  • Monster Fritzi's lawyer is trying to pass off the crime as something Fritzi did as a result of some sort of mental disorder.
This last news made me so angry. They are trying to blame an illness for that man's actions! His actions were calculated and methodical, carefully planned and enforced up to the last nail of that cellar. He carefully created that cellar for Elisabeth for six years with the government's money. A person with mental disorder cannot think through things long enough to make any decision. A person with mental disorder act on his impulse and often his delusions. Mental illness does not take away the innate goodness of people.

Fritzi's action was planned and carefully followed through. He showed no mercy or compassion. He even presented himself as a "jovial man" in front of everyone. Everything was calculated and he thought he could get away with it. He was not ill - perhaps, he was. His disease emanates from his soul. He has no heart and no soul.

On the other hand, I applaud Elisabeth. You'd be amazed at the tiniest details revealed on how she tried to protect her children against the horrible truth. We don't know though if she was successful at it. Was she able to protect Kerstin? Was she fighting or was she only bidding for her time? She told the children "Heaven is upstairs". Did she give up on ever coming out?

May 4, 2008

Elisabeth Fritzi -- She Created Her Cellar in Austria

The story becomes even more horrifying by the minute. I just read this from Daily Mail.

Fritzl kept sex slave daughter chained up with a dog lead in the dungeon that SHE helped to build

Depraved Josef Fritzl kept his daughter chained to the wall by a dog lead during the first nine months of her imprisonment, it emerged today.

A chain was put around her neck and only released when she went to the toilet.

Documents leaked from police files also show that Elisabeth helped to build the prison where she was to spend the next 24 years of her life.

She had not been told what the cellar was for and had been ordered by her bullying father to help him work on it.

It was only when a 300 kilo door was put in place that she discovered she had built her own prison.

The leaked notes also show that Elisabeth lived the first nine years of her captivity in a single room where her children had to watch as she was repeatedly raped by her father.

It was only later that Fritzl, 73, had started to expand the cellar with additional rooms.

Until that point the children in the cellar had to watch while their mother was raped on "numerous occasions" - and even later when other rooms were added they still had to listen - as none of the rooms had doors.

Elisabeth told police her cellar ordeal started when she had been asked to help her father mount the steel and concrete entrance door, the final cellar component, and once this was completed he had drugged her and locked her up.

When she came to, she was handcuffed to a post and remained handcuffed for the next two days.

Elisabeth Fritzl

For the next six to nine months he had put her on a leash that kept her captive but allowed her to go to the toilet.

She reportedly told police he frequently came downstairs in that time to demand sex.

She said that at the start she had fought against the imprisonment, banging on the walls and screaming until she could no longer speak, but no one had come as the weeks turned into months, and the years into decades.

She said she had eventually stopped arguing with her father who in turn had stopped beating her as frequently.

Eventually she had become pregnant with Kerstin, now 19, and she had informed her father - fearing that he would be furious because he would now have to release her to go to hospital.

He had reportedly replied: "Do not think you are getting away from me so easily."

Details of the birth have not been spoken about by Elisabeth but afterwards Fritzl had continued to return frequently for more sex, at least once every three days.

After Kerstin there were further children, Stefan, 18, Lisa, 16 Monika, 15, Alexander, 12, whose twin brother died from neglect before he could even be given a name, and finally Felix, 5.

Elisabeth remained in the cellar until last month when her daughter who had reportedly suffered from epileptic attacks since birth, started once again to get severe cramps.

He agreed reluctantly to take Kerstin to hospital but only after chillingly making Elisabeth write a note to doctors.

fritzl dungeon

Elisabeth was kept in one room of the dungeon, under the family home, for nine months

It read: "Wednesday, I gave her aspirin and cough medicine for the condition. Thursday, the cough worsened. Friday, the coughing gets even worse. She has been biting her lip as well as her tongue. Please, please help her! Kerstin is really terrified of other people, she was never in a hospital. If there are any problems please ask my father for help, he is the only person that she knows."

Elisabeth had to carry Kerstin, who weighed 50 kilos, upstairs to the car. It was the first time she had seen sunlight that reportedly temporarily blinded her.

As her eyesight slowly adjusted she noticed the way the house had changed, a swimming pool - and what seemed to be a conservatory and another garage had been added.

But just two minutes later she was back in the cellar and the door closed.

Kerstin's two brothers were reportedly both distressed at the sudden disappearance of their sister and had both asked where she was and what was happening to her "outside the door".

Records show the Fritzl then rang the emergency services saying: "This is an emergency, I have just found my niece unconscious."

On the 26 of April, Elisabeth was listening to the local television on the small TV she had in the cellar and saw a report from a doctor that she was being sought because the condition of her daughter had worsened.

For the first time in years she stood up to her father and demanded to be taken to the hospital - where she was found by police.

When Elisabeth spoke to police after she was rescued at the hospital on the 26 April, the information she gave was so shocking officers said they just sat and listened.

They described how she spoke fast, with long pauses as she seemed to struggle to gather her thoughts and look for the right words.

The interview lasted two hours, and produced notes that covered eight sides of A4 paper.

Elisabeth who is in a secure ward with her mother Rosemarie, 69, and five of her six children told investigators her father had acted alone in providing food and clothing for them.

Kerstin is still in an intensive care ward.

Nelson Mandela -- A Terrorist?

Did you know that the United States has Nelson Mandela, yes, that "Nobel Peace Prize winner and international symbol of freedom Nelson Mandela", included in the Terrorist List? What the heck is this world coming down to?

U.S. has Mandela on terrorist list

By Mimi Hall, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON — Nobel Peace Prize winner and international symbol of freedom Nelson Mandela is flagged on U.S. terrorist watch lists and needs special permission to visit the USA. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice calls the situation "embarrassing," and some members of Congress vow to fix it.

The requirement applies to former South African leader Mandela and other members of South Africa's governing African National Congress (ANC), the once-banned anti-Apartheid organization. In the 1970s and '80s, the ANC was officially designated a terrorist group by the country's ruling white minority. Other countries, including the United States, followed suit.

Because of this, Rice told a Senate committee recently, her department has to issue waivers for ANC members to travel to the USA.

"This is a country with which we now have excellent relations, South Africa, but it's frankly a rather embarrassing matter that I still have to waive in my own counterpart, the foreign minister of South Africa, not to mention the great leader Nelson Mandela," Rice said.

Rep. Howard Berman, D-Calif., chairman of the House International Relations Committee, is pushing a bill that would remove current and former ANC leaders from the watch lists. Supporters hope to get it passed before Mandela's 90th birthday July 18.
FIND MORE STORIES IN: United States | Senate | D-Calif | Hamas | Rice | South Africans | Nelson Mandela | House International Relations Committee | African National Congress | Berman

"What an indignity," Berman said. "The ANC set an important example: It successfully made the change from armed struggle to peace. We should celebrate the transformation."

In 1990, Mandela was freed after 27 years in prison for crimes committed during the struggle against Apartheid, a repressive regime that subjugated black South Africans. In 1994, he was elected South Africa's first black president.

Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., called ANC members' inclusion on watch lists a "bureaucratic snafu" and pledged to fix the problem.

Members of other groups deemed a terrorist threat, such as Hamas, also are on the watch lists.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says "common sense" suggests Mandela should be removed. He says the issue "raises a troubling and difficult debate about what groups are considered terrorists and which are not."

When ANC members apply for visas to the USA, they are flagged for questioning and need a waiver to be allowed in the country. In 2002, former ANC chairman Tokyo Sexwale was denied a visa. In 2007, Barbara Masekela, South Africa's ambassador to the United States from 2002 to 2006, was denied a visa to visit her ailing cousin and didn't get a waiver until after the cousin had died, Berman's legislation says.

Get him off that list! Now!

Elisabeth Fritzi -- Austria's System Latest Victim or Just Her Father's?

This news story shocked and disgusted me. Curiously, however, I devour every little detail I could get from it. It's a humiliating morbid curiosity that I probably share with everyone who has read and followed this gruesome story.

My memory of my father while growing up were good ones. He would usually wake us up on Sundays in such ungodly hour -- 4 in the morning -- to go to Church with him. My sister and I were really pissed off. We would be nodding our heads off, trying not to sleep while the priests drone on and one about some sins that we didn't even know of at that time.

By the time the one-hour mass is over, my sister and I would be completely awake and we would walk to town with our father to buy bread.

I remember my father tugging my hair whenever I would have migraines and he would tell me stories until I would fall asleep.

Those are good memories, huh? This is probably I almost vomited when I read the story of Elisabeth Fritzi in Austria. The daughter who was repeatedly raped and locked in the cellar by her monster father.

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Elisabeth Fritzl, 42, was raped repeatedly since being lured into the dungeon built below the family home in a small Austrian town. Police said she had been "broken" by the experience.

Josef Fritzl, 73, admitted to police that all the children were his.

Three of them - Kerstin, 19, Stefan, 18, and Felix, five - were held captive with their mother in a series of windowless rooms and never saw the sunlight until they were freed on Saturday.

Incredibly, three others, Alexander, 12, Monika, 14, and Lisa, 16, were raised in the home by Fritzl and his wife. They were adopted by the couple and went to school, leading apparently normal lives.

The other child, a twin, died shortly after birth and the body burned by Fritzl in a boiler. Detectives today revealed details of the complex of rooms where Elisabeth was held since August 1984.

The three children kept prisoner with her were born there and are thought to have spent their entire lives underground.

I followed this story and I am still following it. As much as it horrifies me, I seem to be morbidly curious. It haunts me. I cannot believe how such evil could possibly exists.

People are saying that this story is the shadow of the Swastika.

The truth is that, for Austria, the Nazi era is a can of stinking worms that the country has fought for more than half a century to keep the lid on.

While Germany has largely overcome the darkest pages of its history by laying them bare, apologising and facing up to the past in order to build a new future, Austria never underwent this catharsis.

The result is that the whole of modern Austria is in denial about its recent past; its national identity has been founded on a tissue of lies and wishful thinking.

There is a disturbing parallel between the way respectable Austrians choose to bury the truth about the country's Nazi history and the manner in which the apparently respectable Fritzl covered up his monstrous behaviour in the cellar.

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Perhaps. That author calls it Austria's institutionalized schizophrenia. You could blame it on the system. You could blame it on the society that perhaps gave Fritzi the Nazi way of thinking. But I believe, in the end, he is completely accountable for his actions.

He is a man with half humanity or perhaps with no humanity at all. I have heard of incest. Our region is flooded with reports of incest and it horrifies me, but nothing has practically made me vomit as much as this one.

Austria's highest penalty for crimes like this is 15-year imprisonment. 15 years?! He does not deserve that kind of mercy. The appropriate punishment is 24 years, locked in a 5'6" cellar with no one to talk to. This does not even answer for the repeated rapes or the murder of one of the children.

I have never embraced my daughter as tightly as I did after I heard this story.

If you're wondering if the mother knew about it, she said she didn't. I doubt it though. I think she was just too scared to do anything about it. I don't know if she was a coward, a broken woman or an evil woman like her husband.