How was your day?

I woke up really early. 
Went to school with B. 
Danced at the children's day concert. 
Danced again with some mommies at the canteen while giving out snacks to the kids (because there was music).
Played basketball and dart with my boys. 
Ate cheese prata with the boys.
Read scriptures. 
Talked to a friend. 
Had facials. 
And pedicure. 
Tried to keep in touch with  my family. 
Understood when my family was to busy to keep in touch. 
Became a "friend" to my husband. 
Worked hard. 
Got rejected. 
Cycled for an hour to move on from rejection.
Had black coffee. 
Ate fruits. 
Took vitamins. 
Finished my phone's memory by recording memories. 
Did some crafts. 
Gave thanks to God. 
My only regret is sleeping late. Because I'd like very much to finish this post.
Wrote this post.
And smiled a lot.

Hope you too had the best day ever!

Kidzania 2016

Finally, the boys were able to experience Kidzania! We went there with no enough knowledge of what it was all about except that it's a huge "pretend play" theme park for kids. The night before, I saw bad reviews on facebook about the insanely long queue not just at entrance but in all activities and kiddy jobs. Uh oh. 

Kuya has autism and although he can tolerate mild to moderate waiting time, I was not so sure about the "insanely long" kind of waiting time. So because Benjo already bought the tickets online and Miguel "couldn't stop grinning" it was too late to back out.  That explains my hoping-for-the-best-expecting-the-worst-face in the photo. 

Now imagine my face when I saw this! SHORT QUEUE!

The start of an amazing adventure! Look at those priceless smiles :) 

They gave us  these Radio Frequency Identification bracelets. Kids are only allowed to go out if their bracelets match with the bracelets of those who accompany them.  Kuya's was a special (red) bracelet so that all the staff will know he has autism. Apparently all the staff are trained to handle children with special needs. How AWESOME!

Happy trip!!! 

Arrival at Kidzania. It looks like a small city full of very busy small people. I mean big kids. I mean kids who think they are big people! Once we got there, I was overwhelmed with cuteness! 

The first thing Miguel saw was the acting workshop. 

But wanting to become an actor didn't last too long because now he wants to be a scientist.

We are fine with anything they want to be. Full support!

Even when they become delivery boys, as long as they are happy (and as cute as this when they work haaha). This was one of the activities I enjoyed much. It was so "real" until I looked at the "first salary" they gave me and I saw it was Kidzos and not in dollars or pesos lol. 

At one point Miguel 's bracelet won't work  Miguel was called to report to the immigration office due to his questionable identity. Good thing it was settled so he was able to continue making his dreams come true. Such as being a producer/anchor to his own documentary show at Discovery Channel. 

Now he wants to be a crew at KFC. 

But being a health researcher was too hard to resist. Especially if you come out with freebies!

Now here's the best part. The part where I got emotional.... this was when Kuya joined Miguel again to be a firefighter! Migs was always mindful of his brother, reminding him, giving him a nudge or instructions, making the experience so fun not just for him but for his brother too.  Benjo and I were watching,  speechless. At one point there was a woman who approached me, telling me how blessed I am to have both of them. We both got teary-eyed. Maybe also because we're both at our 40's, hormones make us cry always :D

Here we are, at the end of the day, so happy and full of new fun and cute memories. Maybe we just got lucky that even if it was a school holiday, it was not as crowded as described by many. And even if it was crowded there's still something we can get out of it. Like when we were queuing at the courier job, I told the boys its really like that when you are looking for a job. You need to sacrifice and work hard and wait. 

So if you are a parent, contemplating of whether you give Kidzania a try, JUST GO. It's a wonderful experience your child should not miss. 

To the staff of Kidzania especially those at the fire station, THANK YOU! Hats off to you for being so passionate in what you do and for giving our children  an experience they won't forget!

Till our next adventure! :)

Port of Lost Wonder

Enjoyed our family time on the eve of Daddy's birthday at Port of Lost Wonder, Sentosa --- a nice place for family bondings, picnics and water play. 

It was first time for us to not worry about Kuya wandering off because Miguel stepped up and took charge! In the photos you can see that they are always together as they would wait for each other all the time! At one point, when the lifeguard talked to Kuya about something, Miguel was there to the rescue, ready to explain about Kuya's autism. HAPPINESS OVERLOAD. I couldn't help but get teary eyed to see that happening.. we can think of it as the boys birthday "gift" for daddy :)

Port of Lost Wonder is open everyday, with $15 entrance fee per child on peak days and holidays and $10 on normal days. FREE entrance for adults. 
More photos here

It's a decision to love life. Every minute of it.

Today, It was just the boys and me as Daddy went biking at Pulau Ubin and Mae enjoyed a day off. Which means, WORK day for me. Ha.

The day started quite not so nicely because I was waken up by a bad dream, some negative thoughts about Kuya's mood swings lately..  and I smell PMS.  But at 41,  I am becoming so good at loving my life, no matter how hard it is sometimes that what started to be a bad day ended with a bottle of red wine and this blog post.. My day wasn't so bad after all...

I arranged flowers, washed plates, cleaned the house and I loved it. 

I baked. While I finished some backlogs for work. 

I fed the boys. I ate with them. I played with them. I loved it. 

We... I mean, I sorted toys, books, flash cards... and we all loved it. 

Yes, life may be hard at times. But it can still be beautiful, happy, colorful. If you DECIDE it to be! 

Not in the photos: 
Miguel's beat box performance
Miguel preparing Milo for Kuya
Kuya's fascination with his old photos
Wine with hubby
chat w/ team
week 6 planning
my teal manicure hahaha! 

Heavenly Father, you are my life, and to be with you is the fullness of joy and peace and life; in your loving care for me, I am never truly alone. Help me to live in the certainty of your love and presence each new day. - Praying With Saint Luke 

Dear Papang and Mamang...

I honestly dont like the fact that you are in the hospital now. But I believe you feel happy and very blessed. My prayer is that you will always find pure peace in your heart... and the kind of happiness nga indi ma kuha sa tawo, sa kalibutan and even sa facebook... our love for you is so much more that what can be seen and said. Know that you did and gave the best thing any parent could give to their children --- FAITH. God is so merciful and loving and we have witnessed that because you guided us and you did so well in transmitting your faith to us. For me, that is worth more than all the riches this world can ever give. Thank you for being you. Thank you for everything. Thank God for all his mercy and love to our family manifested in all the struggles we have gone through, the tears and the laughters... life could have been boring and shallow without all these.

We love you our dear parents. If you love us enough to want to stay longer in this world and spend more years with us until you reach your golden anniversary, please be extra careful with what you eat (the jollibee take out made me upset, I cried) please be mindful of your sleeping time, take your supplements religiously and avoid stressors that could further harm your health such as carrying heavy stuff.. etc.

We wish we could be with you today, to visit you in the hospital. I could bake a delicious cake. Miguel and Kuya could sing karaoke. And this day could be as perfect as a rainbow. But God placed each of us where we should be at this moment and we have to trust Him and be grateful.

Happy 43rd anniversary! We love you very much.
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Benjo, Rujim and Migs (and Mae)

Best. Ever.

First post of the year ...  is about the best thing ever that happened last year. 

For some of you who may not have been following me long enough, my eldest son, Rujim has Autism. We celebrate everything about him, good or not-so, which I believe helped him so much. He is now almost 10 years old.  We don't always have the best days but  he is growing happy and adjusted. 

Last year December 20, we celebrated Rujim's really special milestone. I want to call it the biggest blessing for our family last year --- he received Jesus Christ through the Sacrament of Holy Communion. 

It was unbelievable. 

It was hard not to cry. 

Best moments were when he received the Host and when he read a prayer in front of everyone present. I wanted to jump and cry and I didn't know that to do. I was just too happy.

We want to thank the Parish of Saint Anthony under Father Terrence, the teachers and catechists Marilyn and Prema and also our newfound friends, Sharra's family who also received the First Holy Communion most of all to God,  for making this very important day possible! 

And of course, I want to thank Sizzix for giving me the tools I need to personalise Rujim and Sharra's  prayer booklets. Would you like me to share with you how I did it? It's very simple, you can do it too! :)

My inspiration and startng point were these pastel chalk inks and the flower wooden stamps. I just randomly stamped on the folded A4 cardstock, which would be the booklet's cover. 

Then I die-cut 2 different sizes of ornate shapes using the Sizzix Bubbly Framelits and my Sizzix Bigshot. It's too easy to do this. Just layer a "sandwich" made of Sizzix Cutting Pad, Magnetic Platform, the paper, and another cutting pad... then roll it through the machine! Done!

When all the shapes I wanted to use were ready, I adhered the white ornate shape over the front cover, using foam dots for dimension. 

 I stamped the words "First Holy Communion" on a smaller, kraft ornate... and layered it on top of the white. 

Here are finished books, bound with jutes that match the kraft color.  I added stickles (glitters) and dewdrops to prettify it :) 

I hope I inspired you today as much as making these and writing my thoughts inspired me. Happy 2016 everyone! 

- GeN 

Supplies Used: 

Sizzix Bubbly Framelits
Sizzix Bigshot
Sizzix Cutting Pads
Sizzix Magneting Platform
cream, white and kraft cardstock
chalk inks
flower stamps - Hero Arts