Monday, December 31, 2007

Setting Goals, Making Resolutions, Whatever you call it, this is for 2008!

This is the short version of the long draft I did last night. The long version will be on my journal, the one I handwrite and keep for myself. here's the bloggy version:

I. Spiritual
a. Read Bible at least 3 times a week. Use the guide in Wayne Cordeiro's journal.
b. Pray daily (the one that I set aside a time, not just praying while doing something else)
c. Watch Rob Bell's teaching on DVD one a week with hubby (this is also part of the marriage goal)
d. Read 2 new books on Spiritual Growth or Christian Walk. Right now the ones written by Elizabeth Elliot and Philip Yancy sounds good.

II. Physical
a. Use our treadmill at least 2 times a week for an hour each or 4 times a week for 30 minutes each.
b. Sit ups? - wish me luck!
c. Eat healthy - less sugar and starch, more protein, like Tofu, Meat and Nuts. Drink lots of water instead of soda. Snack less.

III. Family
a. Family Time one night a week. Play games, etc.
b. Nice dinner time together, with conversations and not rushing, and relatively healthy food. At least once a week.

IV. Marriage
a. Better Communication. I know this is so general. I'd have to narrow this down and have specific goals.
b. Watch Rob Bell's DVD once a week together.
c. Date Night? Wish us luck!

V. Parenting
a. Read "Everything Tweens" parenting book. Also the Parenting with Love and Logic.
b. Individual time with kids - I mean quality time at least once a week, even just a few minutes at bedtime.
c. Get kids in a routine.
d. Pray for and with kids.
e. Set specific goals for each kid.

VI. Personal Development.
I need to improve on:
a. Sending TY Notes
b. Procrastination - don't procrastinate - especially on mailing stuff.
c. Tardiness - I really need to overcome this. I don't want to abuse the goodness of my employer.
d. Organization -
e. Social Life and Recreation
f. Use of technology - learn and use them to my advantage.

5 Minutes For Mom Is On It Again

New Habits in the New Year

Yes folks, Susan and Janice are on it - they are talking about New Year, New Year Resolutions, and Give-aways. Click that button up top and you'll find out the details. In the meantime, I need to log off and do my goal setting off line because when I am online I tend to get distracted and not concentrate on setting my goals. I'd be back once I have my goals written and I'll post them here :)

Sunday, December 30, 2007

A Thought For The New Year

Sow a thought,
reap an attitude

Sow an attitude,
reap an action

Sow an action,
reap a habit

Sow a habit,
reap a character

Sow a character
reap a destiny

Saturday, December 29, 2007

This Little Blog Of Mine ...

This little blog of mine
has become a best friend of a kind

It helps me think
so I won't sink
and in a blink
I have a wink ;)

This little blog of mine
has become a counselor of sort

A sanity saver
anxiety reliever
sometimes like a jester
that makes me feel better

This little blog of mine
I love this
little blog of mine

Setting Goals For Blogs

Thank You For The Gifts

It's a Major Award For Hubby from Me:

It's the most awaited Pet Care Center she's been wishing for.
Tatay and Nanay made the wish come true.

G wanted this really bad!
Uncle Relly and Auntie Gem granted the wish:

And let's not forget the gifts for Bub and Gus.
Santa remembered them:

For more Weekly Winners, go to Sarcastic Mom Blog here.

Hoppin' on the Treadmill

I'd rather be blogging that hoppin' on that treadmill. But I know I should. Afterall, regular exercise is one of my goal for 2008. No, not just exercising my fingers typing blog posts.. it's actually exercising my body until I sweat. See yah later!

I'm back. I decided to use this post to record my progress throughout the year. here's for today:

Time: 31.39 minutes
Distance: 1.653 miles
Incline: 3-4
Speed: 3-4
Burned: 240 calories

Another 15 Minutes Blog Post

It's 6AM already and got to do more chores. I'm giving myself another 15 minutes like what I did last night.

1. The Power of A Praying Parent. This year I'd be doing a lot of prayers for my kids as well as a couple of kids I "adopted in prayer". My kids are now both on the "tweens" age. This age used to be a "quiet time" of growing years, but recent studies now shows it as changing. The "tubulent years" of teens are coming on earlier and earlier and our tweens are being bombarded with a lot of pressures from everywhere (media as one of the culprit). Tweens is a very important stage of life and I would want to really "protect and nuture" my kids at this time. I am reading the book "Everything Tweens" and it is an excellent book for parenting tweens.

2. Wii are now addicted to Wii. For the longest time we held on to our belief that we do not want any computer games in the house such as Gameboy, PS2 whatever, XBox, etc. but we gave in this Christmas. We bought them a Wii. I will probably talk more about this later (I only have 5 minutes right now and I'm about to consumed that time...)

Now, back to chores!

Great Give-away for the New Year

Designer Credit: Michelle Pieters

As 2008 approaches, the Laced with Grace blog team wanted to thank their readers with a little giveaway.

The package will include a Women of Faith study Bible (NIV/Hardcover); Lisa Whelchel’s Bible study tool for busy moms; a coffee mug from “Mugs of Truth“; the DVD “The Nativity Story“; the book “Love and Respect“; and a music CD by Becky Knight, who just released her first CD.

Head on over and sign up for the giveaway. Click on the image:

Friday, December 28, 2007

A 15 Minutes Blog Post

I have a lot of things to do. But I also have a lot to blog about. Compromise: I am giving my self 15 minutes before I tackle the chores. Kids and Hubby are watching Naruto downstairs so I guess I am entitled to some "recreation" and blogging as you all know is a recreation for me :). So here it goes:

1. My parents are arriving on Monday! Oh, some of you might not know that they are at LA right now visiting my brother and sister-in-law. The plan was for them to stay there until my SIL gives birth, but my mom couldn't wait. They actually would want to go back to the Philippines but would come back here for now. I am thankful for the timing because the kids are on December break - it's good to have them here while the kids are on vacation.

2. Working Mom Blog This Will Stay. - I finally was able to tell my husband about my desire to stay at home (this was when I didn't know that my parents were coming back and I was struggling with the fact that my kids were on vacation and I didn't know what to do for childcare. Our dear neighbor volunteer their dad who is also watching their kids, but I didn't want to give him an additional responsibility). Anyhoo - my husband made it clear that "staying at home" is not an option for me. After thinking a lot about it, I know he's right. As much as I want to, we can't do it right now. Too many factors involved, and it boils down to "not now, not for a while".

3. I need to go. Something happening in our neighbor. They might need an assistance. (I'm back just to let you know that it's just a "minor" thing about our neighbor. I won't go into details because that wouldn't be nice, would it?)

Now on to my chores!

Getting Ready for The New Year

I'm sure we'd be doing some kind of fireworks and firecrackers. But most importantly I want to set goals for 2008. so most likely I'd be posting a lot about goal setting in the coming couple of days. Are you looking forward to the New Year too?

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Bunco... in Las Vegas?!

During last month's Bunco night, Garnett was asking around who would want to swap schedule with her. She's scheduled to host in January but she felt like she might need some more time to prepare. I guess it's because the 4 previous bunco nights we had have been all fabulous, the hostess did so well, that there seems to be a "pressure" to come up with some creative ideas on bunco hosting.

My schedule to host is not until June. I thought maybe I should just swap so I can host and be done with it (at least for 12 months). And so I started googling bunco to get ideas. Oh yes, I google everything - who doesn't?

Guess what I found out? There is actually an official association for Bunco called World Bunco Association. And there's also this huge event on Bunco called the Bunco Championship to be held in Vegas! Las Vegas? You've got to be kidding me! - but no I'm not. There really is a Bunco championship to be held in Las Vegas!

The big event is being sponsored by Prilosec. This is actually the second year they are doing this. Yes, I found that out through google too. The 2006 Bunco Championship was a hoot, they are doing it again in 2008! To find out more info about this, go to

What got me very excited is that the bunco grand prize is $50,000.00! That's way larger than the bunco prize of $30 GC I won on our first bunco night. Aside from that, there will be fundraising involved for cancer research. As you can read on the official site, the sign up starts on January 3, 2008 but the actual event is on March 7 to 9th 2008 at Ceasar's Palace. It would be nice to go isn't it?

And so, maybe instead of hosting the bunco night in January at our house, I should host it in March and bring the 12 of us in Las Vegas! I can dream, can't I? ;)

Now and Then (Times of Your Life)

When I read the prompt at Sunday Scribbling (now and then) I immediately thought of this song "Times Of Your Life" by Paul Anka. I thought I'd post the lyrics for those who are not familiar with it. Then I found a video too so I'm putting it here too:

Good morning, yesterday
You wake up and time has slipped away
And suddenly it's hard to find
The memories you left behind
Remember, do you remember

The laughter and the tears
The shadows of misty yesteryears
The good times and the bad you've seen
And all the others in between
Remember, do you remember
The times of your life (do you remember)

Reach back for the joy and the sorrow
Put them away in your mind
The mem'ries are time that you borrow
To spend when you get to tomorrow

Here comes the saddest part (comes the saddest part)
The seasons are passing one by one
So gather moments while you may
Collect the dreams you dream today
Remember, will you remember
The times of your life

Gather moments while you may
Collect the dreams you dream today
Remember, will you remember
The times of your life
Of your life
Of your life

I know this is not much of a Scribbling... but this song evokes so much "Now and Then" memories; memories from my childhood...warm memories in high school and so on...

NOW and THEN... that prompt also made me think of TOMORROW. 2008 is fast approaching and I need to make some goals for that year. I had a THEN that good, now is BETTER, and hoping that next year is EVEN BETTER.

For more Sunday Scribblings, visit their official site HERE.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Thankful Thursday - A Day After Christmas Edition

1. Thankful for the company I work for. The Christmas party they hosted in a hotel was exceptional. The bonuses they gave were exceptionally generous. I'm so blessed to work for them. My bosses and co-workers are very nice to work with. It makes going to work easier and fun :)

2. Thankful for the A's our next door neighbor. The A family spent Christmas Day with us and I am so thankful for their friendship. I usually am shy, but with them I feel very comfortable. We had such fun conversations - the hours passed by so quickly. It was very nice celebrating Christmas with them. It's also extra nice that their kids and our kids get along well.

3. Thankful for our church Hope Chapel and the Christmas Eve services they've put together. For the lesson we learned on Joy, Peace, Hope and Love.

4. Thankful for our families and close friends who are also like family with us. Thankful that Becky and her son I were able to join us this Christmas as well as the N's.

5. Thankful for God's provisions that we are able to buy gifts and give gifts, as well as received them.

6. Thankful for Amanda and Heather for joining me with the 40 Days with the Son - that kept our focus on the Christ of Christmas. Thankful that Jesus came to dwell among us, to save us.

7. Thankful for the praise report from Heather. Her MRI is clear :)

8. Thankful for Logan - what a blessing his sharing was.

9. Thankful for blogging friends and friends who don't blog but I met through blogging.

10. Thankful for for this year and looking forward to the coming year...

For more Thankful Thursday, visit Lynn's blog :)

It Was A Very Merry Christmas ...

For more Wordless Wednesday Photos, go to WWHQ and
5 Minutes For Moms

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Logan, The Sky Angel Cowboy (A Fresh View of What Christmas and Easter Is All About)

Logan is a 13 year-old boy who lives on a ranch in a very small town in Nebraska. Logan listens to Christian Radio station 89.3FM KSBJ which broadcasts from Houston, TX. Logan called the radio station distraught because he had to take down a calf . His words have wisdom beyond his years.

Since airing the audio of the phone call and now the making of the video clip, it has taken on a life of its own. People are forwarding it all over the world. We encourage you to share the love of Christ with anyone you can.

(**Sky Angel is a family safe broadcasting service that is offered on satellite. KSBJ is a local Houston Christian music radio station. Video clip produced with love by Hear the entire message at

Christmas Worship Hula - "Silent Night"

Sleep in heavenly peace....

Sleep in heavenly peace.

This post is entered in the Weekly Winners carnival at Sarcastic Mom Blog. Go there to check out beautiful photo entires.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Grace In A Manger

There are a million and one things in my mind that I want to blog about, but I couldn't compose a coherent scribbling. So instead of coming up with some rambling thoughts, I decided it would be better to direct you all to a wonderful post by Shannon. Not that Shannon needs the traffic coming from my link because her blog is already being visited by thousands of people a day. I am directing you there to read about the Grace in a Manger - an intimate reflection fit for this season. Merry Christmas.

And after you read Shannon' reflection, check out this post on Jesus and Dark Chocolate
. Yeah Jesus!

Silent Night (by Josh Groban)

Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin, mother and Child
Holy infant, so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace

Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love's pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face
With the dawn of grace
Jesus, Lord at Thy birth
Jesus, Lord at Thy birth

Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin, mother and Child
Holy infant, so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace

Thursday, December 20, 2007

13 Reasons Why You Should Attend Hope Chapel's Christmas Eve Service


I did it again... kept the "invitation" in my backpack instead of giving it away. I am talking about the invitation Hope Chapel handed out a couple of weeks ago for us to give-away. It's still in my backpack. I need to mail it out or give it away now....

This got me thinking.. when I invite someone who is reluctant about coming to church, what would I say to them to convince them to come? Well... let's see... What are some of the reasons they should come?

1. Delicious Pupus and Dessert - I'm talking home made desserts and awesome pupus like sushi, bree cheese fresh baked with a croissant, ham, etc. etc. Hope Chapel always have a delicious spread of food on Christmas eve. Free food - that's a good start.... like what they say "the best way to a man's heart is through his stomach" :)

2. For Moms of little kids we offer free childcare. Moms, it's peace and quite for a couple of hours! The childcare and Sunday School facility at Hope Chapel is exceptional. You've got to see it to believe it. It's like a wonderland. And of course we have great playgrounds. The classes are supervised by wonderful volunteers. When my kids were small, I love coming to Hope and have those couple of hours to myself. There's even a nursing room where you can breastfeed your child in a private room while watching the service via media feed. How cool is that!

3. Touching Hula - If you have not seen or watched a Worship Hula before, you are missing out. This Hula alone is an excellent reason for you to come to the services. I won't even mention that my precious daughter is dancing on the Friday Night services (which you ought to come too), but really - the Hula dances are awesome. Don't miss it.

4. Put a stop to your nagging friends :) - So your friends who had been inviting you forever would finally stop nagging you because you'll grant his/her wish for you to come and attend church with them. If there's a perfect day to come, it's this Monday at the Christmas Eve service.

5. Christmas Songs - Whether you like the traditional hymns, or contemporary music, we both have them. The music at Hope rocks!. It does! (OK, sometimes a little loud for the elderly, but we also have an awesome choir for you who don't like loud music:) We are blessed with talented artists, musicians, singers - you'll enjoy the music. I guarantee.

6. Cool Dudes and Dudettes - I thought I'd throw this in here. Not that the "cool dudes and pretty dudettes" should be the reason for you to come but I just want you to know that we are a cool church. You know how before there's this notion that church going people look like nerds and dorks? Not us... oh definitely not us :)

7. A chance to meet me. Oh, that's not a good enough reason? I agree. But then again, if you really want to meet me, I'd be in front. Just look for the Filipina girl sitting in front raising her hand while worshiping - that's me. However, do not worry about the raising of hand. You won't have to. A lot of people don't.

8. Lastly... and the most important reason for you to attend is: HOPE. There will be a short (I promise you it'll be short and amazing) .. a short message about hope. In this crazy world of ours where there is turmoil and hardships everywhere, would it be nice to hear about HOPE? Where do we get Hope when we feel like crumbling down? A good place to start is at Hope Chapel....

10. I know... this is a Thursday 13 post so I should have 13 reasons. Here they are: Hope

11. Hope for you

12. Hope for your family

13. Hope for our nation

For more Thursday 13 posts, visit TTHQ

Related Post: Hope Chapel Anniversary


Come celebrate Christmas Eve at Hope Chapel this Monday, December 24th. We're offering three services - 4,6 & 8pm. It's a family celebration for everyone with carols, a word from our Pastor and dessert fellowship to follow in the courtyard. Children's ministries available for ages nursery through six years.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Two of My Husband's Favorite Christmas Songs

My Rhapsody Playlist

Works For Me Wednesday - Christmas-ish Edition

Shannon suggested we share some tips for keeping all the little holiday odds-and-ends wrapped up. It's like a tip for the "last minutes" sort of things. Did she say "last minute?" - hey' that's my forte, that culd be my middle name - I'm the "queen of the last minute", so here's a couple of tips then ;)

1. Christmas Cards Display - all you need to buy is a BLUE MASKING TAPE. Blue masking tape won't mess up your wall or your paint in the wall. It won't leave those ooey gooey yucky sticky stuff in your wall either. Just cut a piece, roll them around to make a double sided tape, put it in the back of the cards, and stick the cards in your wall (find a good size empty wall) . Viola! a Christmas card display!

2. Keeping kids busy while you "work" (aside from just letting them watch TV, DVD or letting them play computer). For younger kids, I suggest Play-Doh's. get a set kind, like the baking kind so they can pretend baking while you are baking ;). For a little bit older kids, let them play with snow inside the house. Yep, snow inside the house. But not the real kind. It's the fake one like THIS. See how much kids are enjoying it:

For more tips, visit Rocks In My Dryer -
hurry, a lot of helpful tips there!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Wordless Wednesday: Christmas Ducks

For more WW,visit WWHQ and 5 Minutes For Moms

Mary Did You Know?

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has come to make you new?
This Child that you delivered will soon deliver you.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will calm the storm with His hand?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little Baby you kissed the face of God?

Mary did you know.. Ooo Ooo Ooo

The blind will see.
The deaf will hear.
The dead will live again.
The lame will leap.
The dumb will speak
The praises of The Lamb.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
The sleeping Child you're holding is the Great, I Am.



The Season

This Season

It's the season to be jolly...
fa la la la la ...
But wait a minute,
are you?

This season is
supposed to be merry and bright...
a joyful night...
Is it for you?

This is the season to rejoice,
holiday greetings
time of giving...
is it...really?

This season
the war is not ceasing
many homeless are still hungry
poverty abounds

The abused still crying
there are people dying
lost we not found
grief is there

And why are the stress and pressure
instead of merry measure
why are there
sadness and tears

It was the night before
and divorce was looming
a family will divide

Ah, but it's supposed
to be a silent night
a holy night
when all is calm

Then why are there chaos
why are there pain
sleep? in heavenly peace?
where do we get that?

This season...
No, it's not just a season
to be merry and bright
it's not just that

This is the season
to remember
that a Saviour has come
and soon will return...


For more writings on "This Season", visit "Writers' Island"

Monday, December 17, 2007

12 Days Of Christmas Hawaiian Style

Christmas Open House - Mele Kalikimala

Aloha Visitors, I am so glad you are here! I am assuming that many of you would be coming from Boomama's Tour Of Homes. But even if you didn't, I still am happy you're visiting.

For ambiance, I thought I'd find a music that we can play while you are here. What better Christmas song there is to play than Mele Kalikimaka since you're visiting a Maui Home :). Below is a You Tube video, just click the arrow, let the music play while you look around. I'd like to say that the house on the video is ours but it's not. Let's just pretend, ok? So, play the music and let's move on :)

When I peeked at the linky list, there's already about 150 people listed (wow!) Once again I am late in putting together a post, so I will just upload some photos and put the captions later (sorry, I am quite disorganized). Maybe you can ask questions about the photos (on the comments) to make it easier for me to put the caption when I get back. Thank you.

From our family to yours ... Merry Christmas!

Again, thank you for visiting. I'd be back with cookies and goodies (and yes, to tell you about the photos). When you leave a message, make sure you're name is linkable or leave a link to your blog so I can visit you too :)


Sunday, December 16, 2007

Posting Frenzy and Other Musings

In case you have not noticed, I have posted 3 videos with lyrics in a row: Count Your Blessing, 12 Days Of Christmas Acapella and Joseph's Lullaby. I didn't mean to inundate you with just videos and not an actual post written by me, but then it's my blog and i enjoy those songs so I am sharing them with you...

Today we'll be on our 32nd day of "40 Days with the Son". This little on line devotion has and is helping me to keep focused on Christ and not just the holiday frills and thrills... It's very interesting how our devotions these past couple of days are about the "cross" and how Jesus endured humiliation and shame and pain for us... it's very touching to read and meditate on Christ's suffering as the same time we're celebrating his birth... It makes me appreciate Christmas even more....

I need to go back to bed and get some more sleep...Or maybe I should just finish addressing our Christmas cards so we can mail them tomorrow. Either way, I need to log off. Happy Sunday everyone!

Joseph's Lullaby by Mercy Me

Go to sleep my Son
This manger for your bed
You have a long road before You
Rest Your little head

Can You feel the weight of Your glory?
Do You understand the price?
Does the Father guard Your heart for now
So You can sleep tonight?

Go to sleep my Son
Go and chase Your dreams
This world can wait for one more moment
Go and sleep in peace

I believe the glory of Heaven
Is lying in my arms tonight
Lord, I ask that He for just this moment
Simply be my child

Go to sleep my Son
Baby, close Your eyes
Soon enough You'll save the day
But for now, dear Child of mine
Oh my Jesus, Sleep tight

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Twelve Days Of Christmas (and more) - Straight No Chaser Men's Acapella

This is a marvelous rendition of the Twelve Days of Christmas! Our good friends Karen and Bret sent us a link to this via e-mail. Thank B&K!

I won't put the lyrics as sung, but here's the summary of the 12 days of Christmas (I know you already know so we'll do the ending stanza and you you work your way backwards :)

On the twelfth day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me
Twelve drummers drumming,
Eleven pipers piping,
Ten lords a-leaping,
Nine ladies dancing,
Eight maids a-milking,
Seven swans a-swimming,
Six geese a-laying,
Five golden rings,
Four calling birds,
Three French hens,
Two turtle doves,
And a partridge in a pear tree!

Count Your Blessings (Instead of Sheep)

I like this song so much. I'm glad I found a video. I like this version of Bing Crosby sang in the movie White Christmas. Here's the lyrics, sing along :)

When I'm worried and I can't sleep
I count my blessings instead of sheep
And I fall asleep counting my blessings
When my bankroll is getting small
I think of when I had none at all
And I fall asleep counting my blessings

I think about a nursery and I picture curly heads
And one by one I count them as they slumber in their beds
If you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings

Friday, December 14, 2007

She's Making A List and Checking It Twice

Unfortunately, it is not the list to see who's naughty or nice! It's a TO DO LIST! That's right, a To Do List! That's what I had been writing and checking twice. I should actually not be blogging right now because this is not on the list!

I better log off. I already am on Santa's naughty list, I better get going and do my chores or I'd be feeling sorry and depressed.

While I am trying to accomplish my "impossible list", I would like to direct you to this article titled "Only A Woman Could Do This Job". I think you'd enjoy it :)

And once again, I say this prayer...

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Pray For Kate

A few months back I posted THIS.
Today I read THIS at Heather's blog.
Let's pray for Kate and her family.

Christmas Program

Thoughts On Life and Death

Yesterday morning I opened up a Christmas card and letter from a dear family friend. As I was reading their letter, I felt very jealous and envious. This family is "perfect" I thought. They have almost everything most families dream of- responsible God fearing Dad; stay-at-home Proverbs 31 Mom (has side jobs just not regular); 3 beautiful young kids ( 1 girl 2 boys) are doing well in school and extra curricular activities such as sports and arts; they travel around the nation (and soon around the world) as a family; they have lots of loving family and friends; they have a beautiful home on Maui; they are actively serving at their church; I mean - what a "life"! I was jealous... I really was. Not that my life is "lacking", but somehow, when I compared our situation to theirs... oppps, there you go "compare" - that was the culprit! We should never compare!

And then yesterday morning when I called the office to say I was going to be late (again), I received a very sad news. One of our employees, a young 24 year old lad, died of a motorcycle accident on his way to work! The news was devastating. It's hard enough to hear news about death on any day, but it seems even harder to receive such news on a season like this, when everyone seems to be or are supposed to be "celebrating". It was a devastating news to all of us in the company. He is a relatively new employee but he's a very nice guy who is just starting anew. He is also the step-son of another employee of ours, who just moved in the subdivision we just built. He is the ONLY SON of his wife; and their "only son" too because our employee (the step-dad) and his wife do not have kids). It was a sad day in the workplace. Please say a prayer for his family. I can't even imagine how losing an only son would feel - devastating of course, but even more...

Our boss decided to order lunches and had it delivered at the "parents' house" so we can all gather there. All the workers (about a hundred of us) gathered in the house of this employee to support and love them. There were hugs and tears. ....

After that, the "jealousy" I felt for our other friends melted away. Funny how when we are confronted with the "life and death" situations (ours or others we know), our perspective align better than when we just try to decipher life without the context of death.

One comforting and touching thing we heard was that the last word uttered to this lad by his mom was "I LOVE YOU". It was not on the accident scene because his mom wasn't there, and he died on the spot of the accident. the I LOVE YOU was uttered the night before. The night before the accident, this lad was in his parents house for dinner. When he went home his mom asked him to call them as soon as he arrive home. He did. And before they hang up the phone, his mom said I love you to him ... Little did they know that that "I love you" is also a "goodbye"...


After the thoughts above, I just want to say
I AM THANKFUL for my life, and for my family.

I think I should head on to Laurel Wreath for more thankfulness

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

13 Movies That Has A Christmas Scene Even Though Not Necessarily A Christmas Movie


We like watching these DVD's around Christmas time:

1. Love Actually
2. Sleepless In Seattle
3. While You Were Sleeping
4. You've Got Mail
5. About A Boy
6. Family Man
7. Home Alone 1
8. Home Alone 2
9. The Ref *
10. When Harry Met Sally
11. The Ultimate Gift
12. The Holiday *
13. The Sound Of Music

* recommended by others, I have not seen it yet

For my Thursday 13 list of
Christmas movies, go HERE.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Christmas and Family

best of all gifts
around any Christmas tree:
the presence of a happy family
all wrapped up in each other.
-Burton Hillis
(Better Homes and Gardens)

Christmas Caroling ala Pinoy (And the collection of Tagalog Christmas Songs)

I noticed that many are landing in my site when they search Google with the phrase "Tagalog Christmas Carol", because of this post I did last year. I am guessing a lot of those "searchers" are Filipinos living abroad like me. Christmas caroling is indeed a great part of the Pinoy Christmas - something that I don't experience here on Maui as much as I would like to. And so I thought I'd write another post on it and provide links to the actual songs (because I do not know how to do the imeem yet;)

Before I provide the link to the songs, here's an excerpt of what "caroling in the Philippines is about" as written by "Filipina Soul":

Here in the Philippines we’ve been hearing Christmas songs over the radios since 1st of September. But at the first strike of December, Christmas Caroling starts. Usually by children (sometimes adults too if for a cause) carrying tin cans made into makeshift drums and tambourines while they try their best to sing along with the most common Christmas carol as they go from house to house every night until Christmas Day in exchange for a few cents. As I child I still remember the feeling of delight when my friends and I would split our “earnings” each night.

Philippines Blog described it this way:

Caroling: Philippine Christmas is not complete without music, and the season is celebrated by Filipinos through caroling. In most urban centers and rural areas in the Philippines, a group of carolers visit houses to sing Christmas songs. Some of these carolers raise funds for less fortunate families through caroling, while others are simply doing it for the joy of singing. Some carolers may be a group of friends, or belong to the same community or civic organization. Others may be family relatives who have made it a tradition to sing together as a family.In the neighborhood, a group of kids may form together as amateur carolers and visit houses every night. They will be more than happy to receive coins or candies as reward for singing Christmas songs. They sing even out of tune, and are creative in using tin cans, plastic containers, and bamboos as their musical instruments. It is the fun of doing it that mattters, out of tune or not!

I found a You Tube video of a group of carolers and even though the quality of the video is not that clear, it was fun to watch and listen to them sing. Click here if you'd like to check it out.

I also found a collection of Christmas Tagalog songs on this Tonet's Blog here and Touched by An Angel blog.

Maligayang Pasko!

Sights of the Season #2 - At the Mall (Wordless)

For more Wordless Wednesday, visit WWHQ and
5 Minutes For Moms

The Moment

eyes met
conversations flowed
at ease with each other

Just a few nights
some special moments
time stood still
I was in love...

The moment I knew
I had fallen in love
is the moment I knew
I needed to say


Visit Writer's Island For More

Hark the Hearld Angels Sing - Sung by Jewel

Hark! the herald angels sing, -
"Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled."
Joyful, all ye nations, rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th' angelic host proclaim,
"Christ is born in Bethlehem."
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the newborn King!

Christ, by highest heav'n adored:
Christ, the everlasting Lord;
Late in time behold him come,
Offspring of the favored one.
Veil'd in flesh, the Godhead see;
Hail, th'incarnate Deity:
Pleased, as man, with men to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel!
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the newborn King!

Hail! the heav'n-born Prince of peace!
Hail! the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
Risen with healing in his wings
Mild he lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die:
Born to raise the sone of earth,
Born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the newborn King

It Came Upon A Midnight Clear by Josh Groban (Lyrics and Video)

It came upon a midnight clear
That glorious song of old
From angels bending near the earth
To touch their harps of gold

Still through the cloven skies they come
With peaceful wings unfurled
And still the heavenly music floats
O'er all the weary world

Peace on the earth
Good will to men
From heaven's all gracious King
[ Lyrics found at ]

The world in solumn stillness lay
To hear the angels sing
Hear the angels sing

Peace on the earth
Good will to men
From heaven's all gracious King

The world in solemn stillness lay
To hear the angels sing

Hear the angels sing
Hear the angels sing
Hear the angels sing

On a midnight clear

Monday, December 10, 2007

Day 26 - Go First To God

Do not let your hearts be troubled.
trust in God; trust also in me."
- John 14:1

It's the expression of Jesus that puzzles us. We've never seen his face like this.

Jesus smiling, yes.
Jesus weeping, absolutely.
Jesus stern, even that.

But Jesus anguished? Cheeks streaked with tears? face flooded in sweat? Rivulets of blood dripping from his chin? You remember the might.

"Jesus... kneeled down and prayed, 'Father, if you are willing, take away this cup of suffering. But do waht you want, not what I want'...His sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground". (Luke 22:41-44 NCV).

Jesus was more than anxious; he was afraid. How remarkable that Jesus felt such fear. How how kind that he told us about it. We tend to do the opposite. Gloss over our fears. Cover them up. Keep our sweaty hands in our pockets, our nausea and dry mouths a secret. Not so with Jesus. We see no mask of strength.

"Father, if you are willing, take away this cup of suffering." The first one to hear of his fear is his Father. He could have gone to his mother. He could have confided to his disciples. He could have assembled a prayer meeting. All would have been appropriate, but none was his priority.
How did Jesus endure the terror of the crucifixion? He went first to the father with his fears. He modeled the words of psalm 56:3 "When I am afraid, I put my trust in You" (NLT)

Do the same with yours. Don't avoid life's Garden of Gethsemane. Enter them. Just don't enter them alone. And while there, be honest. Pounding the ground is permitted. Tears are allowed. And if you sweat blood, you won't be the first. Do what Jesus did; open your heart.

* This is an excerpt from the book 3:16 written by Max Lucado. We are currently doing on on-line devotion. Feel free to join us.. anytime.

The Voice Of Truth (by Casting Crowns)

Oh,what I would do to have
the kind of faith it takes
To climb out of this boat I'm in
Onto the crashing waves
To step out of my comfort zone
Into the realm of the unknown
Where Jesus is,
And he's holding out his hand

But the waves are calling out my name
and they laugh at me
Reminding me of all the times
I've tried before and failed
The waves they keep on telling me
time and time again
"Boy, you'll never win,
you'll never win."

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
the voice of truth says "do not be afraid!"
and the voice of truth says "this is for my glory"
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

Oh, what I would do
to have the kind of strength it takes
To stand before a giant
with just a sling and a stone
Surrounded by the sound
of a thousand warriors
shaking in their armor
Wishing they'd have had the strength to stand

But the giant's calling out
my name and he laughs at me
Reminding me of all the times
I've tried before and failed
The giant keeps on telling me
time and time again
"Boy you'll never win,
you'll never win."

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
the voice of truth says "do not be afraid!"
and the voice of truth says "this is for my glory"
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

but the stone was just the right size
to put the giant on the ground
and the waves they don't seem so high
from on top of them looking down
i will soar with the wings of eagles
when i stop and listen to the sound of Jesus
singing over me

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
The voice of truth says do not be afraid
And the voice of truth says this is for my glory
Out of all the voices calling out to me (calling out to me)
I will choose to listen and believe (I will choose to listen and believe)
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

I will listen and believe
I will listen and believe the voice of truth
I will listen and believe
'Cause Jesus you are the voice of truth
And I will listen to you.. oh you are

Sunday, December 9, 2007

What Christmas Is All About

And there were in the same country
shepherds abiding in the field,
keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them,
and the glory of the Lord shone round about them:
and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them,
Fear not: for, behold,
I bring you good tidings of great joy,
which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day
in the city of David a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you;
Ye shall find the babe wrapped in
swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel
a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace,
good will toward men.
Luke 2:8-14 (King James Version)

Hark the herald angels sing
"Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled"
Joyful, all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With the angelic host proclaim:
"Christ is born in Bethlehem"
Hark! The herald angels sing
"Glory to the newborn King!"

Christmas Letters - Yes? No?

Christmas Letter - some likes it, some don't. I happen to like receiving Christmas letters. for me it's means "connection" as I read the updates from family and friends.

While doing our usual bookstore trip (one of our favorite family time) I happen to notice this book on the display shelf. It's called Christmas Letters from Hell. I tell you what, it's very funny! I bought a copy.

Tonight, we'll be "doing" our Christmas cards. I don't know yet if we're going to write a Christmas letter or not. Hubby is usually the one who write it - he does a better job - he writes with a "sarcastic funny flare" as opposed to my "inspirational" (ahem) or "serious" (read "boring") kind of letter.

So... are you sending a Christmas letter this year? Here's an excerpt from Newsday:

If you want your holiday letters to be memorable for all the right reasons, Michael Lent, the author of "Christmas Letters From Hell: All the News We Hate From the People We Love," has these tips:

Since your letters go out to a wide array of friends, family and acquaintances, some of whom know you better than others, carefully consider how much you should share, he says. "Letting people know that an illness is in remission is appropriate, but a blow-by-blow account may be too much information for some of your recipients."

Don't go on about how wonderful you are. "We already know you're wonderful, or else we wouldn't be your friend," he says. Don't exaggerate. "With all due respect to the Lifetime Channel, life isn't just a series of incredible highs and dramatic lows," he says. "People like to get an idea of what you've been up to, but they can easily sense when someone is embellishing to spice things up."

Sights of the Season #1

Hopeful Spirit over at the On The Horizon is doing "Sights of the Season" and I want to follow her lead. This is my first one. Most post will be Wordless.

UPDATED Dec 9 - Monday: I just read about this FUN MONDAY doing a carnival of Christmas ornaments. I'm joining in. I think this post qualifies :)

Weekly Winners : Hapkido and Taekwondo

Hubby tested for Orange Belt on Hapkido and passed it! Congratulations Honey!
(Honey is the tallest guy on the right)

My son G during a Taekwondo Exhibition at their school fair. Go G!

For more weekly winners photos, go to Sarcastic Mom's Blog