Workadas Pay It Forward

Saturday, November 29, 2014 6 Comments A+ a-

Earlier today, my workmates and I visited Providence Home of St. Joseph at Tugbok District, Davao City. It is a home which caters abused, abandoned, neglected, and orphaned children. At first I thought of it as an ordinary outreach activity, something like those any other outreach programs required by our schools way back in high school and college. But this time, it's different. I guess when you grow up and do things willingly, you see things differently.

We had the usual programme: introduction, games, presentations, yadda yadda. Then the children took us by surprise with their numbers, when in fact, we should be the one surprising them. It was a lot fun than I expected. Yes, I was more inclined to the fun part. I was never emotional when it comes to this. But what gave me away was when they sang a Christmas song with the words:

Lagi mo na maiisip na sila'y nandito sana
At sa Noche Buena ay magkakasama.
Ang pasko ay kay saya kung kayo'y kapiling na
Sana pagsapit ng Pasko, kayo'y naririto...

To my non-Filipino speaking friends, to simply translate this song it means, I wish my loved ones are here this Christmas.

I am no fashionista.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014 5 Comments A+ a-

Yet despite that lack of fashion sense, I definitely am no sloppy dresser either.

I dress up like an eighteen year old with a devil-may-care attitude college student in tees, jeans and Chucks. So, what's the big deal?

I am almost thirty.

It seems like people have have been poking their noses with the way I dress because I have been told quite a lot of times to dress up appropriately according to my age. I don't know what that means but I certainly dress up appropriately according to my lifestyle. Simpleng tao lang po ako. I don't get out of my way to spend a fortune for clothes and fashion. I am never really crazy about them to begin with.

Just around the corner

Tuesday, November 18, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

What is it about growing up that makes the birthdays or Christmas, for this matter, seem less exciting?

Well, I guess when you grow up you begin to see the real essence of Christmas. Or to put it simply, you become more dramatic. You think less of the gifts, parties, and the red tag sales here and there. You become more profound (read: emotional) because you think more of the things that really matter, like love and giving, and friends and family. I used to be so deep when it comes to matters like this, but things, oh well, have changed.

It has been a long time since we spent the Christmas together completely as a family. And I think that's the reason why I really can't feel the Christmas spirit. Past Christmases have been bland and boring. I've been friends with the Grinch the past years. And I was completely okay with that. I guess, when you grow up, boredom grows up with you too that the magical feeling of Christmas goes on a steady decline.

Of Fantasy and Brandon Sanderson

Saturday, November 15, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

I really have this penchant for fantasy reads. In fact, I have one shelf allotted for fantasy books only. I'm not going to apologize for this humblebragging, but I just want to show how much I really love fantasy. Why do I love fantasy so much? One word: Imagination. Perhaps, I owe a big part of my very wild imagination to the fantasy books I've read. Reading fantasy takes me to places I've never been, shows me things that never were, and puts me in situations that never could be. The possibilities are just limitless, imagination is the only limit.

Fantasy genre is oftentimes sneered upon, perhaps because of magic, dragons, and whatnot that some people may find stretched too far away from reality, or simply just childish. But for me, this is far more superior than other genres because it is difficult to digest. If you're not into it, you'd puke before you even know it. But if you get the flow and the feeling right, you will definitely hunger for more.

From children to dark to high to epic fantasy, I have already lost count how many books I've read.  But one thing I know is for sure, right now, Brandon Sanderson is my new favorite author.
Image source
I love his writing style. The intricacy and complexity of the universe he builds, the undeniably uniquely designed magic system, and the well-developed characters never fail to captivate me. I can devour 400 pages in one sitting. 1000+ pages in 3 days. And still have the appetite for more. Yes, it's that good. I am actually having a hard time reading other fantasy novels since Brandon Sanderson. I mean, I became hard to please at that.

What makes list articles bad

Wednesday, November 12, 2014 2 Comments A+ a-

10 Definitive Ways To Tell You’re In Love With The Right Someone. 8 Qualities Of An Actual Nice Guy. 10 Signs You're Dating A Jerk. 7 Signs You're in an Awesome Relationship. 15 Honest Questions The Person You Marry Should Be Able To Answer. The Reasons Why You Never Want To Marry a Sorority Girl. I could go on forever.

These are just a few of the list articles, on a dating category for that matter, that have been circulating all over the internet. It's nothing new when articles like these go viral because, as a matter of fact, reading such can be entertaining especially when you are able to relate yourself to an article spot on.

Just one more chapter

Saturday, November 8, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

I missed reading. I haven't read for months. With an exception to The Maze Runner, which I've read from my phone. But I had to stop halfway because my eyes have been complaining of eye-strain. That means, that novel would have to wait until the next paycheck and I'll purchase the real book instead.
Yep, this is so me.
Anyway, it's Saturday and I finally got time to read uninterrupted. I was too engrossed, I kept on telling myself 'just one more chapter' that I've totally forgotten about dinner. I can't help it. It really feels good to disconnect from the real world and enter another world that could simply bring you mayhem, sadness, happiness, love and so on and so forth.

I just finished reading one and as always, I ended up becoming a victim of emotional trauma from the hands of a paperback. I think regardless of the number of books I've read, I could never get used to it. Books will always stab and wound me, or take me on a high. However it goes, it's an enjoyable experience nonetheless. Yes, I am grabbing another one so that I will have something to blame for my lack of sleep at night again. Haha. Bless my eye bags.

Books and more books

Tuesday, November 4, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

Yesterday, I was supposed to be buying a book for my goddaughter who just turned 15 last Nov. 2. Yep, I was only 14 when I became a godparent. Kaya ngayong sumasahod na ako, kailangan ko ng bumawi. I am really happy she wants to have a book for her birthday. I didn't have second thoughts on buying her one even though I have been avoiding bookstores because whether I'm broke or not, I never got out of there empty-handed. But this time, I decided to step into the bookstore again, keeping in mind that I will only buy what I needed to buy. Much to my dismay, the book that I am looking for isn't available.

I can't help but look around. And just by that, I am well-aware I am losing the battle. There is no way I can fight the urge. One book. Just one book, I thought to myself. Lo and behold! I came out of the bookstore like a child grinning from ear to ear with a bag full of candies, except I was clutching these:

Super Duper Random Post

Monday, November 3, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

Bad News.
Today i just received the saddest news my entire life.

It is confirmed.

I am allergic to crabs.

And I'm asking myself, why? Of all the people, why me?

Why me who loves sea food so much? Why not those who loathe eating this just because they're too lazy to take the shells out and would prefer to eat a much easier to eat food like pork, beef or whatever. Ang hirap tanggapin. Hahaha.
Crabs Buffet!

Oversharing Our Kids on Social Media

Sunday, November 2, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

A lot of my friends have wondered and have been asking me why I am no longer blogging or posting on Facebook about my son. When in fact, I've been so crazy posting online about every snapshot I took, every milestone he reached, just almost everything about him.

So what made me back off?

Unintentional Bragging
One, in the age of social media, I've been bragging about my son in some way, and I didn't know I'm becoming insensitive about that. You see, there's this group in Facebook where Moms like me share sentiments about motherhood. And I've read a lot of post, I mean a lot, about moms getting worried about their little ones not reaching a certain milestone. While some parents become boastful of their kid's advanced development, like how their 2-year-olds can count from 1 to 100, or how their toddler was able to walk before turning one; others on the other hand bewail on their kid's not so amazing or slow development. Since parenting has become visually public, it is inevitable to compare one's kid to another no matter how many times you tell yourself that children grow at their own pace.

Our job, the parents, is not to put our kids on a race like their successes will become our bragging rights. Of course, I know our kid's achievements are something we should be proud of, and yes, may even speak of publicly. I have to admit, I have my fair share of spilling goo and glory about my son too. Can't help it, it's a mommy nature. But we should also be sensitive as well, not to brag in a way that suggests that some other parent should feel as if they did not do good, or convey like parenting is a kind of competitive sport.

Children's Privacy
Two, I have been reading a lot of articles online especially those written about protecting our child's privacy. And the articles The Perils of Facebook Parenting and Respecting Children's Privacy in the Age of Social Media got it right to the point. Spot on. Ever since then I am beyond hesitant to talk about my son.

So what's my take on this? I have to stop. No matter how tempting it is. I admit it, it's hard especially for a proud mom like me. But it's not my life that I am posting. My son doesn't know I'm posting stuff about him. I am inadvertently putting his life in public. Do you think it's right to post photos about someone who cannot even give a consent, even though that someone happens to be your child? It's somehow, in a way, exploiting them. And who knows? These innocent snapshots we took and uploaded will someday, God-forbid, bite our children back. In this age where internet is so powerful, I don't know where my child's photos might end up. The last thing a parent would want is to see their child's photos somewhere totally inappropriate. Right?

So earlier, I made every album on my Facebook account about him available only for me. I am now careful with what I post. I now choose carefully what's okay to be made in public and what's not. And I have painstakingly put down some blog posts I have written about him. Yes, I made that mistake of putting his full name, birthday and where he was born online. Call me a paranoid. OA lang siguro ako. But it's better safe than sorry. And yes, I do respect my child's privacy.

Of course, that doesn't mean I'm keeping him away from the people. I will still share. But sharing online is now out of the question. I will share if he's old enough to say, "Yes, you can share that mom". And perhaps I'll share those captured shenanigans and embarrassing photos to the girl he's bringing home. *wink*

Let bigots be bygones

Saturday, November 1, 2014 0 Comments A+ a-

I was raised in a non-catholic family, all my school life I grew up in a catholic school (run by nuns and the other by Jesuits), and all the while having friends with different religions. Apparently, this paved way for me to have an open mind regarding other people's beliefs.

I've seen, heard, and read a lot of debates relating to religion. Debates like that are actually engaging. Challenging one's beliefs while the other justifies and stands for his own is, in fact, healthy and can really be interesting because you learn a lot from that. However, heated arguments are inevitable in a two-sided story, let alone in religion wherein the crowd is "multi-faithed". But that doesn't give one an excuse to negate and insult another person's beliefs. Unfortunately, it happens. Always.

It's no wonder why our world tend to lean on chaos. Because I, for one, am fed up hearing people trying to shove into the people's throat that their religion is right and it is the best way to live. Pfft! Ok we get it, you have your mission, that's one thing. But attacking, discrediting, or undermining one's beliefs just because it doesn't go well with yours, is another story. (I apologize if this is turning to be a rant.)

I guess what people really need is an understanding of other people's beliefs, religion for that matter. If people would only care to educate themselves and keep an open mind, then there'd be less bigots in this world; which will eventually beget respect.

Respect is becoming elusive nowadays. And that's what the world needs now. Yes, I may not always agree with other people's beliefs. I admit it, I find some beliefs too absurd and not even worthy of (my) respect. But as a matter of civility and courtesy, I respect the person that holds them as long as their beliefs do not go out of the way to harm others.

And I just wish people would show some respect too. Not just with religion, but with tradition, culture, principle, choice, and opinion as well. If respect is hard to give, then could we just at least have an open mind and be tolerant about it? Come on, let's be civil. Living in harmony may be close to impossible, but that's a start.