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.

Feb 25, 2011

Stories and Riley

I like listening to people.  I like listening to their stories.  I like listening about their lives. For a while, I forget about my own story.  I forget about my worries and my problems. For a while, it's all about another person's story.  I like that.

Settie and I went out tonight for a cup of coffee and she told me stories - lots of stories.  I enjoyed listening to her.  For a while there, I was back in college.  People are really, really interesting if you actually bother to listen to them - hear out what they have to say.  I've discovered that people generally live interesting lives regardless of what kind of life they think they might be living.

I am going to hit the sack now. I am so exhausted and I am emotionally drained.  Riley is still sick and I think she might have to stay in the hospital for another couple of days.  At least I'm not worried she's going to get dehydrated.  I have a class tomorrow and I have exams this weekend.  Sometimes, I wonder where I get the energy for all of this.  Most of the time, I just feel so freaking tired.

It's tough being a mother.  I think it's the most difficult job in the world.  It takes every bit of you and  it doesn't leave anything behind. .  It takes every piece of your heart - and just when you think you have nothing left to give, you'd find out there's still so much more.  It's exhausting sometimes how these little people can mean life itself to me.

Feb 16, 2011

Marriage: Do Not Sweat the Small Things - Yeah Right!

I’ve heard this so often that the next person who tells me to “not sweat the small things” will have his head ripped off his body. Forgive the gruesome picture. But trust me though when I say this, when it comes to marriage – it’s the little things that matter.

The Husband
Sure, my husband and I have gone through the toughest times. As I’ve often said, we’ve been through hell and back, but when it comes to his farts, his dirty feet on the bed and his shoes inside our bedroom – I lose it. I just see red and I explode. Every time, I’d smell his fart or see his dirty feet enjoying my clean sheets, I find myself wishing I could just strangle him.

In his defense, he has little flaws (people –including me – just generally like or love him) and unfortunately, in my opinion, his farts, dirty feet and shoes are his worst flaws. He is hard-working. He often does the laundry. He takes care of the baby at night. And he listens to me whenever I rant like this. Nope, he is not a slacker, but damn it, he can irritate the hell out of me!

I have this thing for clean sheets. I do not want to sleep without taking a bath. I do not even want to jump on the bed without cleaning up first. So, whenever I see his dirty feet on the bed, I see red.

I have this thing about clean floors – and I absolutely forbid slippers or shoes inside the bedroom, so whenever I see him wearing his shoes inside, I’d see a neon blinking sign that says, “I don’t care what you think! Your feelings are not important to me! Bwahahahaha!” And then I’d find myself doing the most stupid things.

One time, we had an argument, I turned the television’s volume up, the whole neighborhood could practically hear the show that was on. It was 12 in the morning. He pissed me off over something I cannot remember.

That's one stupid thing.  Lately, I have developed the habit of spraying air freshener on his butt every time he farts. Kill the source, I figure.

The thing is I’ve tried explaining to him in many different ways how I feel and how important these things are to me. I can’t even remember how many times I’ve thrown a fit over his farts. I don’t understand how he can’t understand this simple request, “If you feel like farting, get out of the room. I can’t stand the smell of your fart!” It’s simple, right? The same goes with this shoes and dirty feet.

I’ve tried crying, cajoling, nagging, bullying, explaining, requesting – but nothing has worked! He still farts inside the room. He still wears his shoes inside the room and he still sleeps on the bed with dirty feet - I must admit though that he rarely does these things now.

But still one day, if I were found dead, it’d be because his fart finally killed me. I swear!

 It’s the little things that really irritate the hell out of me. These things build up until like Mt. Vesuvius (where the hell is that?), I explode, leaving everything in my path dead. I’ve often heard people say to not sweat the small things. In marriage, however, it’s these things that really take their toll.

Choosing to stay married means choosing to forgive on a daily basis. In my case, to forgive – one fart at a time or one dirty feet or one dirty pair of shoes at a time. Oh, he has improved over the years. He makes an effort nowadays to make sure that he does not enter our room with dirty shoes. He cleans his feet before he jumps on bed. But the farts – oh, the farts. Their incurable.

I get lots of hugs and kisses though every time he farts. He knows how furious I’d get, so he’d rushed to my side and showers me with kisses and “I love you’s”. Of course, no matter how good those kisses feel, once the smell reaches my nostrils, I’d find myself exploding. Oh, well, we still have 50 years, so maybe, I’d be immune to the smell of his farts when I’m 70. Sigh. Or maybe I should invest in good BB guns. :))

Feb 14, 2011

Happy V-day You Grumpy People You!

Daddy is far from being romantic  In fact, he is rarely thoughtful.  This is probably because he grew up with his grandparents who were not your touchy-feely type of people.  They literally live in a house precariously perched (exaggerated of course) on top of a mountain in Guinobatan, Albay.

Mamu and Daddikins

You see, my father's family was generally well-off back then - way before, my grandfather gave in to the lure of women, smoking, gambling and drinking.

When my father was born, however, this dull-witted fortune teller told his parents that he was unlucky - a jinx.  So, my grandparents gave him to my great grandparents from the time he was born until he was 14 years old.  He was dirt poor and he couldn't go to school often. Not surprisingly, he only learned to read when he was in High School.

Needless to say, my father has weird ideas about things.  He was rarely embraced or praised and he grew up to be the same.  He can't even say, "happy birthday" or "happy anniversary".   He's a kind man though.  He's an honorable man.  Still, he drives my mother nuts.

For instance, my mother's birthday and their anniversary come and go without my father bothering to greet her at all.  This pissed the hell out of Mama at first, but she grew tired of throwing fits. So, she does not expect anything from him anymore, especially on Valentine's Day.  It's sad really.  It does not mean, however, that they do not love each other to pieces because they do.  My mother is my father's soul mate, his love, his life.  Still, he drives my mother nuts - didn't I tell you that already?

Anyway, early this morning, Mommy asked, "Dy, anong aldaw ngunian?"
Daddy answered absentmindedly as he continued to solve the crossword puzzle, "Lunes."
Mommy prompted, "Iyo, pero anong date?"
Daddy answered, "katorse."
Mommy, undeterred, asked once again,"Anong bulan?"
Daddy, still refusing to look up from the puzzle, answered, "February."
Mommy asked, "Anong special sa aldaw na February 14?"
As if he was answering a knock-knock joke, my father asked, "Ano?"
Mommy walked out on him, muttering under her breath, "Gurang ka na talaga. Happy Valentines Day na lang daw saimo!"

After a few hours, she saw Erbe came in with roses for me. She was all giggly about it.

Girls, women... regardless of what they say about Valentines Day, they want something from you, men.  They want romance.  It doesn't matter how old they get - get them something! Do something nice for them! Trust me, they want romance. Period.

Anyway, Happy Valentines Day to you people. I don't care what you think about Valentine's Day. My husband gave me flowers - so, yeah, I am definitely liking this day.


I don't want to post these things on Facebook, so you know the drill - I post them here! :)

Paige's drawing of Ariel

San Francisco Church at night. This picture does not give it justice. It's beautiful at night.

Found this old photo. I miss college. I miss my old room - where everything happened! :)

Paige took the picture.

Paige's Drawing of Mommy and Daddy getting married

My little artist

I want this jeep. It's waiting for us. Ba, when are we going to get it?


My Big Toe

I am generally far from being nice. I can be very, very mean when I want to, so basically, I deserve this.  I deserve this because I chose not to say anything when that woman kept pushing on my toe with her nasty tools.  I guess she wanted to remove the effing ingrown - and this is the reason why I chose to keep my mouth shut.

I did not even glare at her when I saw the blood spurting from my toe!  Yes, spurting!  I chose to keep my mouth shut, so basically this is my fault.  I should have just kicked her to kingdom come, but I didn't.

I deserve this.


It's swollen - and it has pus which is - well, just disgusting to say the least. And it's really painful too.  It has this flesh-thingy sticking out.

I  deserve the fever and the pain.

oh why, oh why didn't I say anything?!

Feb 10, 2011


I don't know why but this song just reminds me of you...
probably because of the line, "And I wonder if I ever cross your mind. For me it happens all the time." :)

What Have I Been Up To? Let's See...Where Do I Start?

Mommy typically has problems with helpers. They just do not satisfy her. She'd initially be pleased with the efforts of a help, but fairly soon enough she'd find hundreds of reasons why she think she needs to let go of the help. To be truthful, sometimes, I think my mother needs a robot. So, sometimes, I worry about our present helper leaving us without notice.

Anyway, yesterday, our helper did not come to work. I was worried that she might be leaving us and I was wondering if she mentioned anything to Riley's yaya about her leaving.

So, I asked, "Beck, suya si Manay She ki Mommy?"

Beck, who did not understand my question, answered, "Iyo po."

I was taken aback. Oh, geeze, I thought. So, I continued, "Tano daa?"

Beck answered, "Dai daa po kaya nagtratrabaho."

Huh? That's weird, I thought. Does that mean she expects Mommy to work? So, I asked, "Anong dai nagtratrabaho?"

"Sige lang daa po kayang tukaw tukaw sa baba?" Beck answered quite matter-of-factly.

At this point, I was already irritated. How dare she, I thought. But driven by curiosity, I just had to ask, "nagtutukaw sa baba?"

"Iyo po daa, sige lang hugay."

Did I hear her right?

"Si Mama? Sigeng hugay?!?!"

Beck then looked at me, confused.

"Naghuhugay po si Mommy mo?"

"Sabi mo baga sigeng hugay si Mommy?"

"Ay dai man po baga? Si Manay Sheryl po baga naghuhugay ta makuto."

Okay, at this point, I was really, really confused.

"Bako po hinahapot mo sako kung anggot si Mommy mo ki Manay Sheryl?"



Anyway, check this out -

This is the tree

that bore the fruit - 

that Erbe is munching on. :)

Nice, huh? |The children in our neighborhood though have started to "steal" the fruits, which pisses the hell out of Mommy.  You can hear her screaming at the top of her lungs in the morning for the past few weeks, "Hoy! Mga Lintek Kamo! Barababa kamo diyan! Paparaikit na naman nindo mga prutas ko, dai pa ngani ako kayan nakakakan!"  

Yep, she's Mrs. Fruit Scrooge. 

She reminds me of this old lady in Cabusao who used to run around with a bolo, threatening us when she sees us stealing fruits from her fruit trees - for the life of me, I don't know why her balimbing trees bore the sweetest, most delicious fruits in the whole barrio. 

Cha Doreng. 

May she rest in peace. 

What happened to her? Oh, she was murdered in her sleep.

Seriously! Murdered probably by one of those kids she deprived of those delicious fruits in her backyard. Kidding!  But she was really murdered. Someone broke into her house and stole all her money and stabbed her to death.  I was so freaking scared when I learned about it. 

I used to dream of her screaming at me for stealing indian mango from her fruit trees. The dreams stopped when I started praying for her soul and asking for her forgiveness for the fruits I stole. Seriously, I'm that weird.

Anyway, I told Mommy she reminds me of Cha Doreng every time she'd scream at the kids.  She also screams at people who would steal the fruits of her banana trees.  It's another matter, altogether though when she's dealing with adults. Mommy generally lose her balls.

Mommy has kang kong planted in front of our house.  Every week, she'd see this old lady, harvesting her kang kong.  She tried to ignore it until she couldn't take it anymore and she approached the old lady who was busily harvesting the plants.

She informed the woman, "sako baga yan." (Please take note this is a senior citizen addressing another senior citizen.)

The old lady frowned at her and asked, "Sigurado ka?"

Mommy answered, "iyo, ako daw kayan nagtanum? Tano mo tigkukurua?"

She was taken aback and left speechless when the old lady answered, "Ibebenta ko. Maimuton ka man. Idadagdag ko lang man sa pambakal ming bagas. Para lang kayan, maisipun ka!"

I was laughing my ass off at the old lady's sheer audacity when Mommy told me what happened.  She really didn't know what to say after the woman accused her of being selfish. She kept asking me what she should have said.

Paige though guards Mommy's plants like their the jewels of the Crown of England.  Speaking of Paige, it's very fortunate that she has had her MMR shots; othewise, she could have ended up with German Measles like her sister - :(

Dr. Setay said that Riley has German Measles, which aside from her medical opinion, just makes sense because Mommy's chicken boys had German Measles too several weeks ago.

Getting free consult from Dr. Settie

She's feeling a whole lot better though - the rashes have cleared but there are dark marks on her skin. :(

This is a quite long post. I think I should just end this now and eat my lunch - Erbe's Chao Fan (yep, he cooked it). :)

Feb 7, 2011

Why I Enjoy School

It's amazing how times have changed. This wasn't possible when I was in College - undergrad, I mean.

Anyway, these videos show exactly why I enjoy going to school. :)
I did not post my own video; however, I did my own stint. My partner and I sang. It was a KMN moment, but the grade I got was worth it. :)