Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Miracles of Prayers, Part Three.....

10. My fourth pregnancy was difficult. I lost a lot of weight during my first trimester. I generally felt a heaviness on the left side of my abdomen. I kidded Lucas. “What if they were twins?” He replied in jest. “That would be absurb.”

After my first trimester, I went to Manila for a check up. This time around, I thought of looking for a Catholic doctor, hoping to be delivered in a Catholic hospital; for could anything ever happen to me, I wanted to be administered by a Catholic priest. Through the recommendation of my sister-in-law Jean, I consulted Dra. Amelia Poblete at Cardinal Santos Hospital. Upon examination, the doctors said ( Both Dr. Sy and Dr. Poblete, as I went to see both of them at different times.) that my abdomen was beyond three months. I was way on the fifth month according to them, but I could not be wrong. Instead I was told to do a sonogram to determine the fetal age. So I went to UST Hospital for the ultra sound procedure. Upon lying down, the technician first asked me “Mrs, may lahi ba kayong kambal?” Which means “Do you have twins in your genealogy?”
“ No, why?”
“Because the sonogram showed you’re carrying twins.”
“ Hah? Hah? Where? Where?” “How do you know?” I was apprehensive.
“Here......” The technician showed me pictures I could not even understand.
“Here, listen to the strong heart beat.” He said.
“Where is the other heart beat?” I quickly added.
“Here, they have both healthy heart beats.”
Thus I was comforted and assured that both babies were fine. I was happy, I was scared. I could not understand the mixture of feelings inside of me. I shed both happy and frightened tears. I did not know what to do.

People were however happy for me, not knowing the danger I was facing. Dra. Alice Sy wrote an advance notice to whoever my next doctor would be, to which I forwarded to Dra. Amelia Poblete. Her advice....“for early Ceasarian due to massive adhesion.”

In Cotabato, people were kind to me, specially my mother-in-law, the school principal and my co-teachers. I continued to teach at CCI and tutored my children at home. One day, my mother-in-law saw me tutoring Emil while lying down on the bed. She told me if I was feeling tired, maybe I need to hire a tutor instead; but I just wanted to tutor my own kids. It saved a lot of tutoring fees. Hahaha, besides Lucas was always helping me, specially in Math and Chinese subjects. I was also advised by doctors not to climb too many flights of stairs, and so my class was brought down from the second floor to the first floor even though I did not personally request for it.

When I was nearing my sixth month, Dr. Ignacio Yap, (my children’s pediatrician) saw me at South Seas Trading. He advised me to leave for Manila early and not wait for the full term. When I consulted Dra. Annabelle Buenaflor (local gynecologist) for prenatal care. She advised me the same thing. She said she was more concerned about the babies because twin births had tendency to premature and Cotabato City had only one incubator for two hospitals. The other incubator was out of order and had not been replaced yet. Infact two or three more babies at the moment were sharing one incubator.

So, even though I did not like to leave my three young boys, who were still schooling in Cotabato, but I heeded the advice of the two good doctors and enplaned for Manila, leaving the kids under the care of Lucas and my mother-in-law. My tummy was so big, the airline thought I was in full term, but I brought all the necessary papers showing that I was on the second trimester only. Indeed I was big, my abdomen was way up high near my chest, I had difficulty breathing lying down on my back. In Manila I stayed at Balete Drive with my maiden family. My father was still living and in good physical health then. I prayed everyday, for besides my own safety, I was also concerned about finances. How can Lucas and I cope with five children. I opened the Bible almost everyday, to read verses from St. Matthew:

”Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow, they do not harvest and do not store food in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than them?”........

”Look at the flowers in the fields how they grow. They do not toil or spin. But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his wealth was clothed like one of these.”...............

“Do not worry and say: What are we going to eat? What are we going to drink? Or: what shall we wear?”...........

“Ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened. For everyone who asks, receives; whoever seeks, finds; and the door will be opened to him who knocks. Would any of you give a stone to your son when he asks for bread? Or give him a snake, when he asks for a fish?As bad as you are, you know how to give good things to your children. How much more, then, will your Father in Heaven give good things to those who ask him! “

To be continued...........

Friday, September 11, 2020

Miracles of Prayers, Part Two....

7. In 1986, my husband Lucas wanted to go to USA and Canada to visit his brothers Antonio and Domingo. The planned visit would take about a month to travel and tour. I did not like to go that far nor that long, since the kids were still very young, Roy being 11 years old, Tom was 9 and Emil 7. But Lucas said, if I won’t go, he would go by himself. That settled the issue. And so I prepared, way ahead of time, on how to leave the children in good hands while we traveled to America. Lucas and I left for USA in May when the children were on school vacation. I left them in Manila with my brother William and sister-in-law Jean at Balete Drive, Quezon City. I assigned Naning Bolodo, their yaya, to take care of them. I hired a young student from the University of the Philippines to give them Math and Reading home service tutorials. While their cousins attended summer classes in Binondo, I gave instruction that my children were not to go that far for summer classes. I also gave instruction that the summer tutorial class at home was specially for my kids only, as per request by the UP tutor. He did not like outside disturbances while conducting his classes. Alas, because I wasn’t around that summer to bring them out, my three young boys had a long boring vacation. A blessing in disguise though, instead, they looked forward to their daily tutorials everyday. The young tutor was innovative, he brought comic books for them to read. I, on the other hand was full of worry during my trip, specially concerning Roy’s physical health condition. However, I donned on my hope and trust and faith in the Lord each day. I prayed my rosary on the bus, or on the plane, or at the hotel room. Furthermore, the one month tour was even extended for another half month. I held on to my rosary everyday and prayed for my children. Miraculously, even though my children had the most boring summer vacation ever, yet no incidents or illnesses transpired during the whole of that summer. Roy was asthma free and continued to be healthy for a duration of 8 months since we left Cotabato. Thank you O Lord! Thank you my God for taking care, and taking very good care of them while we were away. I love you my God!!! The rosary indeed was and is powerful. Thank you so very very much!!!

8. Lucas and I came home from our tour in June, from which the school year had already begun. We brought the kids home to Cotabato. I was overwhelmed with catching up with my school work at CCI, at the same time catching up with my own children school loads too. By July, I missed my period. It had been 7 years since my last pregnancy.

9. The following is the history of my children’s birth, before the arrival of my twins:
a. Roy was born in 1975 in Cotabato City. I underwent classical Caesarian section. He weighted 8.6 pounds. I had a most traumatic experience during the course of my delivery and recuperation because of the crude methods they practiced at the hospital. Because of my traumatic experience in Cotabato during the birth of Roy, I decided to have my second child delivered in Manila.
b. Tomas my second baby was delivered in Manila on November 7, 1977. My new very efficient obi-gynecologist  Dra. Alice Sy (God rest her soul) in Manila made a new incision. She deemed my previous classical operation and healing in Cotabato too crude. She delivered and gave me a low cervical Caesarian section instead. Tomas weighted 8.4 pounds. The doctor advised me that due to my very thin uterus and massive adhesion, I could only have one more baby henceforth.
b. Emil, my third son was born in Manila on September 5, 1979. I chose to be attended by the same efficient doctor, Dra. Alice Sy. It was supposed to be my third and last Caesarian delivery. I was advised for tubal ligation. Lucas and I were tasked to sign for the procedure. The doctor also prepared and readied the hospital for possible blood transfusions. But in the course of affixing my signature, I made a bargain with Dra. Sy. I said, maybe she could possible save me for another baby. Probably I would like to have another baby again in 5 years time. She dismissed me out rightly that I would be in grave danger to have another pregnancy, besides I would be too old already in five years time according to her. Astounded because I was only 28 years old then. But, okay; the doctor knew best, so my husband and I consented and signed. Yet, right after the Caesarian operation, when I was in semi consciousness, Dra. Alice Sy whispered in my ear...”It’s a baby boy, and I did not have you ligated.”

To be continued.......

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Miracles of Prayers

I am a firm believer of prayers. This is a story of my transformation.

1. When I was young, I was not religious. I just did what I thought was my minimum obligations. I prayed before going to sleep and attended mass on Sunday. As a young girl though, I was drawn to visit the Cathedral on Wednesday afternoon, tagging along side my sister Helen. I loved praying in front of the life sized crucifix of our Lord Jesus Christ which was placed prominently on one of the posts near the altar. There was also a kneeler for prayer in front of the crucifix. My sister Helen largely influenced me on my earlier beliefs and practices, also my cousin Nelly Go, because I just wanted to tag along-side them. Hehehe.

2. I learned how to recite my rosary when I went to Manila for my college education at the University of Santo Thomas. For three months, I lived at the Holy Family Dormitory, located at Governor Forbes Street, a walking distance away from the university. I was surprised that my roommates and most of the girls studying at UST were very religious. They prayed before meal, and they refrained from eating meat on Friday. My roommates woke up very early everyday to attend daily masses inside the dorm’s chapel at 5 o’clock in the morning. They also prayed the rosary with the sisters at 5:30 in the afternoon. Reluctantly, I joined them during the afternoon rosary prayer. Also in UST, during the month of October, the College of Pharmacy (My course BioChemistry was under the College of Pharmacy) had piped-in rosary recitation, one decade of rosary at the start of every class.

3. But what inspired and taught me most was my Theology teacher. I learned a great deal of catechism from a female lay professor. She was very influencing. It sparked my love for my Roman Catholic Religion. Sorry that I don’t remember her name.

3. Then there was a time when I was having difficulty with my Chemistry in school; somehow, together with the Cotabato group of girls living in Carola Street, I began going to St. Jude Church to attend its Thursday afternoon masses. Everybody was praying for an intention. I prayed to St. Jude to help me passed my Chemistry subject. As soon as I began attending my first Thursday mass, the next thing I knew, I began performing better in my laboratory works. Then I attended more masses at St. Jude with my sister Helen and cousins Nelly and Adele. I promised St. Jude that if I passed Chemistry, I will shift to another course. Yes, come next school year, I shifted to Education to become a teacher.

4. My mother died in 1991, I left Manila and came home to Cotabato and continued my schooling at Notre Dame University. I had very few friends in Cotabato City and I was feeling very lonely and unloved. I never had a suitor before the age of 21. So I prayed to God to not let me be a spinster. I said in my prayer that I will be a better person, married with husband and children, than being alone. Then Lucas came along and I got married at the age of 22.

5. My first born son Roy was extremely sickly. He was a severe asthmatic. He was oftenly confined at the hospital. During one of his confinements, despite the medications, he was still having another difficult attack inside the hospital room. He was crying because of chest and abdominal pain.  His lips and fingers were turning blue. I was thinking of the worst. I told Lucas to stay with me at the hospital that night, as I let Roy sleep on my shoulder, pacified him and watched him struggle. I became desperate. I prayed to God. I said.....if I was to lose my son tonight, I will still believe in You, God; but if he goes tonight, I will not  go to mass anymore..... Next morning, Roy recovered, he stopped coughing and whizzing. Early in the morning, he was able to lie down to sleep on the bed instead of my shoulder. He miraculously recovered from that harrowing attack, and I was repentant of my thoughts. I confided to Minda Go this my tug-of-war thoughts with my Lord, and she advised me to never, never let it happen again. “Lord, I am sorry.” Because of his many illnesses, my son Roy brought me closer to God. I prayed more constantly, I searched for my God and started praying the rosary on my own.

6. When I was pregnant with my third child, I had a couple of accidents and also fever. On the third month of my pregnancy, I had a fall on the slippery floor of my Auntie Pilar’s place in Manila. On my six month, I got sick with fever. On my 8th month, I fell three steps down the stairs on my buttocks at my brother’s Jun house. Because of these, I was worried. While I was in Cotabato, I visited the cathedral every Wednesday to pray for my baby to be all right and okay. Two months before my delivery, I went to Manila for my third Caesarian section. On September 5, 1979, I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy in full term. I was so thankful of God’s grace and gift. In thanksgiving, I prayed the rosary for the whole month of September and subsequently every September for that matter. After September, I continued praying thru October for the month of the holy rosary, then I further continued into November. Hence, I began praying the rosary for all the birth months of all my children. Thank you Lord.

To be continued...........

Thursday, August 27, 2020

I Believe in Miracles......

August 8, 2020, Saturday - I didn’t know why, I suddenly had the urged to call up my sister Helen. I asked about her well being. She said she was fine. We talked mostly about our eldest sister Theng, who had Alzheimer and confined in a home. Our communications with Theng were through phone calls now, so Helen and I exchanged notes regarding our eldest sister’s  well being and lucidness. Then I happened to mention to Helen about a chinese medicine called Lian hua which had become a crazed item in Manila for treating covid fever. I asked her if she heard about it. Alas, she was clueless. She thought it was for treating stomach trouble. I mentioned to her about a certain Philippine General who took it and the Abalos family as testimony to its efficacy. I also mentioned that I had asked my daughter Martha to inquire on how to get the medicine. Then Helen said, to tell Martha that incase she was buying, to buy some for her too. I got a bit irritated that Helen had not been well informed in social media and was not resourceful. I told her that Martha as of present was still inquiring. That the best person for Helen to approach would be my sister-in-law Diane, the wife of my brother Wilson. That Wilson and Diane were more capable to know where to buy Lian hua since they had more connections and besides they had people to do errands for them too. From this topic of acquisition of Lian hua, thus we ended our telephone conversation. Anyhow, I messaged my daughter Martha that afternoon to include Helen whenever she had the chance to buy the Chinese medicine.

August 9, 2020, Sunday - After attending my online mass at 10:00 to 11:00 AM, my daughter Martha informed me through Messenger that my sister Helen and her children Bernard and Carlo were manifesting flu liked symptoms last Saturday night. “ Hah?! But I just talked to her yesterday and she was okay!“ Because I messaged Martha about buying Lian hua for Helen, she thought I knew it already. Anyway she said that Helen and her sons were able to get Lianhua that same day from my brother Wilson. That they had taken the Chinese medicine and were feeling better. My brother Wilson that same Sunday also texted me about Helen and her family’s condition. It eased my mind though that they were feeling better and had no fever. I attributed it to the taking of the medicine. I believed my guardian angel whispered to me on August 8, to call Helen and informed her about the Lianhua. It was no coincidence that things happened so fast, as she was able to ask my brother Wilson that very same day for the medicine and was delivered to her immediately. Thank you O Lord for helping. Thank you my Guardian Angel for guiding me.

August 11, 2020, Monday - Martha got her order of Lianhua and she sent two more boxes of the medicine to Helen through Grab Delivery. Bernard and Carlo were getting better but we were concern about Helen because she had other health issues. Luckily she was consulting an online doctor through the recommendation of Ben Siy, our cousin-in-law, the husband of my cousin Adele.

August 12, 2020, Tuesday - Helen’s covid test together with Carlo were confirmed positive. Bernard who was also having the same symptoms came out negative. They kept at home. My children advised the boys to monitor their mother’s oxygen level.

Succeeding days.......Although Helen had no fever but she was feeling generally tired. Then she began to have diarrhea. Ever since she got sick, I did not call her anymore because I wanted her to rest. Besides I was such a coward, I did not like to hear from her because I was scared. Instead, I waited for my siblings particularly Wilson to give me updates. I dreaded waiting for news. But I prayed for her fervently. I added one more rosary to my prayers everyday for her healing. I offered mass healing intentions for her and her sons at Queen of Peace Church. I mustered people to pray for her too. I used the social media like Facebook and messenger to ask people to pray for her and her children. I constantly pleaded to the Lord to help her. I searched for a particular saint to help her. I initially called on Pope John Paul II, but as of late I thought of Mother Theresa of Calcutta as more appropriate in her case. I requested my Lady Medriatrix Group of friends to pray for her, my Protestant friends too, most specially Aihua Co. Sadly I didn’t have too many friends, yet everybody seemed willing and sincerely concerned and prayed for her.

August 17, 2020, Monday - I missed a call from my brother Jun at night. I did not return his call. I tend to get hysterical over the phone. I texted him to send me text messages instead, but he didn’t reply. That night I was consigned for something worse. But something inside my head kept on repeating “Trust in the Lord.”, “Trust in the Lord.”. I don’t know but somehow the phrase came out to me like some kind of a music I heard before, something like “cast in wind”. Again, I messaged all my friends, urging them to keep on praying for Helen’s full and safe recovery.

August 18, 2020, Tuesday - I texted Carlo in the morning to inquire about his mom. He replied that his mother was alright, but her oxygen level was fluctuating and the online doctor advised Helen to have her lungs x-rayed. I began praying frantically again, asking the Lord, praying and hoping that nothing was wrong with her lungs. By late afternoon though, I received text message from Jun, that Helen’s x-ray showed she had covid pneumonia. Her doctor advised her to go to the hospital immediately or her condition might worsen. My cousin Adele also sent me the same message. Finally Carlo texted me that his mom would be brought to the hospital by Bernard. She would stay at the er until a room was available. Despite being frantic, I thought she was better off with professional medical assistance. I wrote a letter that night to our Blessed Mother, Our Lady of Lourdes. I placed my healing petitions for Helen in my mini grotto, along side with my earlier letter of petition for my sister Imelda. “Trust in the Lord.”, “Trust in the Lord”, my brain kept repeating whole night through.

August 19, 2020, Wednesday - I waited for news. My brother Wilson appeased us. He was able to talk to Helen from the hospital. Helen was confined in an aircon tent with 6 other covid patients. Accordingly she was feeling better. But never to trust this covid sickness.  My family and I continued to pray for her fervently.

Succeeding days.....Helen was transferred to a private room. A 24 hour care giver was provided her. I kept on praying. I was sincerely waiting for Saturday, the feast day of the Queenship of Our Blessed Mother. I believed  Our Lady would surely make her well during this her feast day. Our Blessed Mother would intercede for her, Helen being a Marian devotee. I talked to God...consider how Helen had influenced  me in cathechism and prayers during my childhood years. That she had been faithfully lighting candles to Our Mother of Perpetual Help during her visitation to the Baclaran Church. She was also instrumental in my pilgrimages to designated churches in Manila during the Year of Mercy. She is a child of our Lady and of our Lord. God have mercy on her.

August 22, 2020, Saturday, the Feast of the Coronation of Our Blessed Mother - I woke up early to attend the Manila Cathedral online mass at 7:30 AM. But somehow due to my frantic nature, I misread an announcement and decided to attend instead a later mass at 9:30 AM at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Retiro Street, Quezon City, with the special occasion of the pontifical coronation of the blessed statue of Our Lady of Lourdes. I realized my misreading too late, I had but to attend the long long online high mass now. I was restless during the mass. But on the other hand, I was thinking that maybe my guardian angel wanted me to participate this event. For I do believe my guardian angel is guiding me. I believe God has mobilized all the angels and saints to help us humans in this time of pandemic. What was two hours of mass participation for the healing intentions of my sister Helen and her family. She had been suffering for two weeks already. With this thoughts in mind, I began to appreciate the special rites of the pontifical coronation. In the afternoon, I received reports that Helen was improving. Her oxygen level was normal and was taken off from the oxygen aiding her. She was now breathing normal room air. Her diarrhea was also improving. Her heart beat was also normal. She had yet to submit to lungs X-ray on Sunday. There was no trusting the covid disease. We earnestly kept on praying for her full recovery.

August 23, 2020, Sunday - Helen’s X-ray showed improvement. According to her, she may be released from the hospital sooner than expected, maybe on Monday. We continued to pray fervently for her full recovery.

August 24, 2020, Monday - I waited the whole day for news. I was so anxious. I was an emotional wreck. I dare not inquire from anybody else though. Around 4:30 in the afternoon, I texted Jeannette about some trifle matter. She pm me that Helen was already at home. O Thank God!!! Praise and bless the Lord!!! Prayers are indeed powerful! But Helen was still generally feeling weak and tired. The whole family had to still be quarantined for another 21 days. O Lord, thank you, but please bring her to full and complete recovery!

Today is August 27, 2020, Thursday....Last night my husband and I and our household continued our weekly Wednesday night participation of the healing rosary, live streamed through Manila Cathedral. Wednesday is the devotional day to Our Mother of Perpetual Help. I believe our Blessed Mother is helping Helen. With this confidence, I gathered courage this morning to inquire about her condition from her sons. I texted them. And this was the answer of her son Bernard..... “She is good. Looking better and also eating more. Carlo and me are also doing good. Ok. Thank you!“

O Lord, thank you. I will never stop loving you. Your love is our protecting shield. Thank you. Amen.

Prayers are all powerful!!! I do believe in miracles!!! Thank you everybody for praying for my sister Helen. Thank you God!!!

Saturday, August 1, 2020

July 2020

Today is August 1, 2020. This is a late posting because I was kind of busy and I was having a lot of emotions last July. But belatedly, I want to post some significant events and/or things that transpired despite being still cooped up at home.
1. This year July 12, my husband Lucas turned 80 years old. This year’s birthday was a stark contrast to last year’s, where in the celebration was held in Manila with all my children and their families, our siblings and kins and closed friends in attendance at Crowne Plaza Hotel. Even though we had previous plans to celebrate his birthday here in Cotabato this year, yet because of the pandemic, we had to simplify the ocassion. Instead of a party with our employees, we opted to share packed lunch with our workers at LCT Hardware during a busy working Saturday afternoon on July 11, the eve of his birthday. I ordered 85 individual snacks packs from Jollibee. Each bag contained 3 separate packages inside: chicken joy happy meal, spaghetti and hamburger. I also sent some snack packs to my sister Jeannette Yu, sister-in-law Rosita Chua and good friend Siolan Yap. Despite the simplicity, everybody was happy with the big merienda. We really do considered our workers and employees as part the family ever since. This time though, due to my paranoia of aerosol droplets, we specifically requested distancing and no singing of birthday song or blowing of candles inside the store. The next day July 12, I cooked for my husband, long life noodles and eggs for breakfast and shared them with my in-laws Luna and Tina. At 10:00 AM, we attended Sunday mass online together with our house helps. After the mass, Lucas and I had a family video chat with all our children, daughters-in-law and grandkids. Everybody greeted him a happy birthday. Despite having to spend this occasion quietly at home, I was mindful and thankful to God for his many blessings. Thank you O Lord.
2. The next Sunday after my husband’s birthday, I took the courage to request my hairdresser to come to the house for a home service haircut. Lucas, Tina, four helpers and myself availed of the house call. I did not have my hair dyed though, for I plan to wear my hair white naturally now. Saves me a lot of trouble. That Sunday was a feel-good-day for me, with my hair cut short.
3. But not everything was rosy in the home front. I was a overwhelmed with a lot of household concerns. Argh! breakdowns and wear and tear! The kitchen sink was leaking, the bathroom sink was clogged up, the air condition unit was leaking water inside the room, the water pressure pump wasn’t working well, and many many other things. I had to call a plumber to fix the water tank, the sinks, the faucet and the pipes. I had to call a serviceman too, to check and clean up my air conditioning unit. The fluorescent light and starter needed to be changed, etc, etc... On top of it, I was scared of the covid, of people coming to the house! Argh! You can imagine, I was a total wreck!!! O God help me! O Lord, please protect us!
4. I had many discomforts too. My throat hurt, my ear ached, my shoulders were sore. I had stiff neck, lumbar pain, gas, dry cough, itchiness, etc, etc. O help me Lord!
5. My husband too was having itchy back from prickly heat. Or fungal infection? I changed the beddings, searched for bed bugs, cleaned the room, applied medication, etc, etc.
5. Recently I found out that the newly hired housemaid was using too much detergent powder on our laundry. Triple the usual amount! We had to rinse all the clothes and underwear again. Argh!!!
6. Our home concerns are all pilling up and I have to worry about the covid. I earnestly pray for God to end the pandemic soonest. But Philippines is getting bad to worse reporting each day. I am frantic and in such panic. O Lord hear our prayers!
Maybe some years later, I will get back to see this post again. I hope everything will be okay by then. I am sure God hears all our prayers. Please mobilize all your angels and saints to help us, O Lord. I believe, I trust and I hope in You.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Remembering My Quarantine

Maybe, I like to look back at ourselves someday..........

My husband Lucas, sun bathing and strolling at the roof top during the lockdown. Thank God for the spacious space, rooftop garden, breezy air and sunshine.
I trimmed my husband‘s hair. I did a good job I think.. Hehehe.
My husband and my families congratulating my daughter Marion on her phd graduation as valedictorian of her graduating class at Massey University, New Zealand. I did the lay-outing for the congratulatory ads to be published on our local newspaper. So proud of her and happy for her. Thank God for this blessing.

This was how I looked on a given day at home during the lockdown. I was a mess, my hair was getting longer and turning white.
Roy’s self portrait during his stay home quarantine in USA. I was amazed how the painting looked so much like him and his mood.
On my husband 80th birthday on July 12, 2020. We attended Sunday mass online. A peaceful and quiet celebration. Happy birthday Lucas!!!
Family audio chat on Lucas’ birthday. I love you all! May God bless us all!!!
After four months, I had my hair dresser came to the house to cut my hair. I looked and felt much better after the hair cut, but I have decided to wear my hair naturally white now.

We continue to pray earnestly to God, to have mercy on us and the whole world by eradicating the covid 19, healing all the people, healing all our land, and healing the whole world. Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy. 

Monday, June 29, 2020

Food During the Quarantine

I want to remember some of the food that made me happy during the lockdown:
1. During the first few weeks of the lockdown, I was scared my food stockpile would not last me for a month. Because I did not know how to go about buying food without going out, I also though of foregoing my favorite comfort food. Then Nestor, the caretaker of my lot, brought me this abundant harvest of yellow mangoes. Yay! I was so delighted. They were a lot, I could not even consume them all. But I happily shared them with my in-laws Tina and Luna, my sister Jeannette who had her driver picked them up, my sister-in-law Rosita, my household helps, and the office secretaries who were reporting for random works. The rest we kept them to ourselves. My husband and I waited for the fruits to ripen slowly. We happily relished and enjoyed our own ripe mangoes that lasted us for about a week.

2. When there were no fresh fruits, and I did not like to send a runner to buy me some, afraid that he might get exposed, I used my stockpile canned fruits and whipped up this concoction, a favorite of my husband Lucas for desserts and snacks.

3. After two months, I decided to buy flour and baking powder and using my remaining dried blueberries from last year (hehe), I baked these oatmeal blueberry muffins. It was so good!!!

4. Then I had more mangoes of different variety harvested from my lot. They are called Indian mangoes. They are of the big giant variety kind. They are better eaten while still half ripe, as they are  sweet and are crunchy during that stage. Since the store had reopened, I distributed them to all the workers who had come back to work.

Big mango from the lot, small papaya from the market, regular pomelo from Tina.

5. I exchanged recipes with my kids online, so I baked this quiche from the recipe of my daughter Marion. The baked quiche was good, but it was just too much work. Hahaha.

6. On a Sunday, I made classic pancake for snacks. My first successful pancake from scratch. I shared  them with Tina and Luna too.

7. Then Nestor, my lot caretaker brought me my first harvest of avocados from my land. These were initially seeds, whom my sister-in-law Lolita brought all the way from LA. We germinated the seeds at home, then sent them to my lot to be planted. That was in 2016. Three seeds grew into three trees, and one of them are now bearing fruits. They are really first class avocados. They are called malagkit meaning creamy or sticky, the best kind. 

8. And the latest delights are these malagkit native corns, also from my lot. We had them yesterday. I asked the cook to approportion the corn into three households distribution, whom we cook for everyday in our common Tan family kitchen. They are really really yummy.

During this trying and uncertain time of pandemic, I thank the Lord sincerely for not withholding food from us. Thank you O Lord. But please do end this pandemic soon. Oh how I want to live a normal life again. O Lord have mercy.