Getting Silly Over Barbie

So sue me! This thirty-something mom is planning (not yet sure but getting there) to give herself for Christmas ... dyaran! ... Barbie dolls Ericka and Annelisse from the movie The Princess and the Pauper. Shhh! Don’t tell my husband just yet or he’ll tease me until way past the New Year. I’d rather the jokes come after the Christmas gifts are unwrapped.

Ok, ok, it may seem that I’m losing my marbles but hey, cut me some slack. I grew up having only one, and I mean ONE, simple doll. We weren’t well-off enough for me or my sister to demand Barbie dolls from our parents, who were mind you, already working hard to provide us the quality education they wanted us to have, which we did.

But I dreamed then that one day, I’ll be able to buy myself that coveted toy once I have my own money to spend. However, the years went by and other more important priorities had to come first place. I thought I have already relinquished that girlish dream.

Then came this movie ... the Princess and the Pauper ... that had such beautiful songs with wonderful melodies and heartfelt meanings. When I happened to see the ad in Cartoon Network (nope, not me but my sons who were watching) the other day, about the two dolls who can “sing” songs from the movie, my brain started ticking. I think if I am to indulge myself of a childhood fantasy just once, this would be it. (If you’re wondering why I don’t just buy them for my daughter, let me tell you, I don’t have one *sniff*. How tragic eh? But I’m having lots of fun with my four sons notwithstanding.)

So tell me I’m silly and I’ll agree with you. But right now, I feel that having the ability (and willingness) to be childlike sometimes make us adults better able to relate with our kids on their level. Hmmm. Just thinking aloud.

Nevertheless, I still feel a little daft just thinking about this. And if you feel I need a good whack on the frontal lobe, (to borrow my friend Monique’s favorite expression) ... spank me! :D


Song In My Head

I saw a Kenny Loggins album last week which has a cut of the song Return to Pooh Corner. I have been intrigued with that song since I saw KL in an interview before about how he’s compiled songs and made it an album for his son, sort of like lullaby music.

So I bought a copy and listened. Uh-oh the mommy antenna went up and my first thought was “My kids are gonna love this!” All my boys are avid Winnie the Pooh fans. They love watching and reading stories about the silly old bear and his friends.

The other night, I surfed the net for the lyrics of the song and printed it out. The next day, I called my six-year-old Daniel and showed him the lyric sheet. “Pooh?” he asked. “Yup, this is a song written by this man (showing him the CD cover) for his son so he can sleep at night,” I replied.

When I played the CD, I traced the words with my forefinger while singing along. Daniel’s eyes widened in delight. He loves music so much and I guess the melody also touched his heart as it did mine. In no time at all, he was earnestly trying to catch up on all the printed words while singing along. He’s an expert now when it comes to the chorus hahaha.

That night, I think we played Return to Pooh Corner more than a couple of dozen times until Daniel fell asleep. He’d want me to skip everything else on the CD and just play the song over and over.

And now I’ve got a song in my head, which fortunately is very pleasant and soothing to the senses. So I don’t mind if I suddenly find myself humming while in the middle of writing something on the computer. And it goes like this ...

So help me if you can I got to get
Back to the House of Pooh Corner by one
You’d be surprised there’s so much to be done
Count all the bees in the hive
Chase all the clouds from the sky
Back to the days of Christopher Robin and Pooh ...




Most of us must have already decided about what to give our kids, nieces, nephews and godchildren for Christmas. How fortunate these children are, having people who care so much that they are sure to receive not just one or two gifts but lots.

But can we stop for a moment and think of the thousands of poor children in our country? Kids whose only wish for Christmas may be perhaps three complete meals just for that special day, or to be able to hold even a tiny doll or toy car in their hopeful little hands.

Help change a poor child and his family’s lives now! Give the Gift of Hope and sponsor a child today!

For only P450 a month or P15 a day, you can already send a poor child to school, provide him/her with basic necessities and health care; help him/her develop good values, and assist his/her family and community put up livelihood projects that will eventually help improve their way of life. This is made possible by pooling your monthly child sponsorship donation with those of other child sponsors.

World Vision has been helping poor Filipino children since 1957. Over 200,000 kids have already benefited from World Vision’s child sponsorship program. Currently, more than 88,000 poor children nationwide are under World Vision’s care.

Please join the vision of sending every poor child to school by sponsoring at least one child now. YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO CHANGE THE WORLD, BUT YOU CAN CHANGE THE WORLD OF ONE CHILD.

Visit the World Vision booth in Glorietta now. They will be there until the end of December. Inquiries on how to sponsor a child are welcome at 372-7777 or contact Mr. David Liban Jr. at 0927-5612704. You can also visit their website at www.worldvision.org.ph

On a personal note, may I share with you that my husband and I decided to sponsor a six-year-old girl last year (the same age as our James who is a special child but is not able to go to school due to his disability) and we are sure glad we did. I am blessed by how much Rutchie (that’s her name, close to mine) has grown from the first picture I saw of her last year to the annual report sent to us lately. We correspond through letters (coursed through WV) although her mom is the one who’s writing for her as Rutchie is still young and can’t write long letters yet. She was an honor student in her preschool class last March and how that made us so proud of her! Nowadays, when I’m buying stuff for my four boys, I would also be thinking of her and wonder what she’d like to have. We have sent her simple gifts already and she wrote back how much she loved them. That sure warmed up this surrogate mommy’s heart :) 

Thank you for reading this far. I pray that God will touch your heart today.




The Bill Porter Story

I did it! After several tries (and soul searching if I really deserve to be more tech-savvy hahaha) I finally figured out how to download HBO’s program line-ups for the month on my PDA. Okay, okay, you might be thinking “That’s too easy! Anyone dumb can do that.” But for this mom who didn’t see the light of the internet until I already had four kids, that’s a cool feat!

Last night, I stayed up until three o’ clock this morning until I finally discovered how AvantGo works for my Palm Pilot (rather my brother’s since he just let me use it while he’s not too busy with skeds :P).

Well, this afternoon I was so thankful that I did have the HBO schedules. Too bad, only one network is allowed for the free AvantGo accounts, I would have downloaded Cinemax’s too! Anyway, I saw that a new movie is coming up at 4:45pm so I thought of waiting and see what the movie “Door to Door” is all about.

And man, I’m glad I did. The preview said it’s a true story of a man with cerebral palsy who became a salesman despite the odds. Since that condition is close to my heart (my son James has CP) I overrode all protests from my other kids (who wanted to watch Cartoon Network – again) and requested that I be given a chance to hog the TV too just for an hour or two.

What an inspiring story! Made me pray harder that James can at least attain that kind of mobility (walking, talking etc.) someday. *sigh*

William Macy, the actor who played Bill Porter and whom I’ve seen to play antagonist roles on TV before would never be the same before my eyes. He has played the part so well that he has my deepest admiration.

My other sons, who had no choice but to watch with me or do their own thing outside my bedroom, stayed. They got engrossed too in the story that they started asking me lots of questions (that distracted me so much I’m gonna repeat watching the movie when it’s shown again on Wednesday next week) like “What happened to his mom?”, “Will James be a salesman too when he grows up?” “Why are they fighting?” “What happened? I didn’t get that.” The innocence of kids!

Oh and did I mention I cried buckets while watching? But I was surreptitiously wiping the falling tears or else I’d be made fun of by my mischievous kids again. After the credits have finished rolling, I stood up and got a tissue from the top of the dresser. Joshua also got a piece of tissue and blew his nose. Which made me look at him in wonder. He was sniffing! To which he answered my unspoken question “I think I’m getting a cold.” Hahaha, proud little man. Then he said, “Mom, when you go online later, can we visit www.billporter.com? That’s what it says in the movie right? So I promised “Sure son, later.”

Now that I’ve been to the website, I’ll be saving the URL on my favorites link so Josh can access it tomorrow when he’s awake. I hope that my sons, young as they are, also came away from that movie with the inspiration, joy and hope that I felt after watching it.



Frustrated

I don’t know what it is about me and rainbows but darn, this penchant of mine about rainbows have extended to fascination with two songs about them, which unfortunately, I can’t find the lyrics to!

I’ve been searching the net for sooo long now that I’m almost ready to give up. So please if you have complete lyrics of the following songs, do email them to me, please, please, please.

Here they are: Rainbow’s End by Sergio Mendes and If I Could Reach Rainbows by David Benoit (yes, it's no longer instrumental). If you haven’t heard those before, and you’re a hopeless romantic like I am, I’m pretty sure you’ll love the melodies of those two.

Thanks!


We bought a DVD of Peter Pan the movie. I like that version although I was a little disappointed at how they portrayed mermaids as dark creatures. But everything else was great. The way Peter Pan, Tinker Bell and the kids were flying … so fluid, so smooth! The cast of characters were well chosen, in my opinion at least. And the chant “I do believe in fairies!” brought me back to my childhood for a while … to recollections of the times when I too, was fascinated with those mystical creatures I only read in storybooks.

photo borrowed from imdb.com
But the thing that moved me the most was when the credits started rolling. I first saw “Produced by Muhammad Al Fayed” which was followed by “In Memory of Dodi Al Fayed.” As if I knew them personally huh. From I what heard in the news, the young Al Fayed didn’t live like a saint when he was alive (if you’re still clueless, he was Princess Diana’s lover who died with her in the car crash). I’m not really sure why, but the sweet gesture of the father dedicating something to his son struck a chord inside my heart.

photo borrowed from people.com
It made me more thankful that right now, I still have my whole family here with me. All my four sons are doing fine and my husband is as strong as ever. I just wish we could stay intact for as long as possible.

What I saw brought home the reality that no matter how rich and powerful you are, the moment that fate has decided to take a loved one from your life, you are as powerless as the next human being. So let’s all take a moment to thank God for every new day that life brings complete with all the people we love by our side.




Funny, funny movie

Yesterday, my husband and I were able to watch a movie together after such a long, long time. Imagine, the last one we've been to was Evolution! Gosh I can't even remember if it was two or three (?) years ago already. And that was with the whole clan. An outing of sorts with all the kids (ours and nephews included) in tow plus my sisters-in-law. We weren't able to go out together much since one of us always had to stay at home with our special child James. Good thing we have a reliable nanny now whom I can trust to look after James for a few hours.

Finally we got to go on an impromtu date! I interviewed a resource person in Manila for an article I'm doing and he texted me if I'd like to go to a movie. Of course I said yes. I told him as long as it's not a scary flick, I'm fine with a comedy or romantic one. He suggested White Chicks.

Hah, how hilarious can those Wayan brothers be? I've never laughed that loud for quite sometime now and it was a good feeling. I forgot my worries over deadlines and assignments for a few hours. Sooo nice.

I particularly enjoyed digging my elbows in my husband's ribs during the scene when Marcus gets falling asleep while his wife was talking. "Daddy, that is so you! Men!"

The movie made me smile in a lot of ways and I'm thankful we got the time to be together. By the time I had to go home to Laguna, and he to Alabang (he goes home on weekends only due to the demands of work, *sigh*), I was missing him already even before I got on the bus headed to the province.

My friend Inez delightedly said "Wow, after 11 years of marriage, the romance is still there!" when I chatted with her this afternoon. And I have to wholeheartedly agree.


TV Time Galore

Until about a year and a half ago, our little almost unknown town here in Laguna has been untouched with the technology of cable television. Last year, we were offered subscription and we declined since there were only a few good channels available. For P250, I felt it wasteful to spend on a cable connection without even HBO or the Discovery Channel on it.

Until about a month ago, my brother, who only comes home every two weeks, decided we should finally subscribe since he always gets frustrated not being able to watch the F1 races when he’s here. He offered to shoulder the monthly payments of P300 (they increased it already!) while the installation fee fell on me. Practical person that I am, I was convinced that the DVD player is still sufficient.

Until two days ago, I was still undecided (still no Nick, Disney nor Discovery channel in the line-up!) when my hubby took the decision out of my hands. He said go ahead and he’ll pay the installation fee.

This afternoon, the cable guys came and bore holes in the ceiling so the long cables can travel from the post outside. Okay, I have to admit it was a good decision, judging by the way the kids stayed glued on Cartoon Network right after the TV was turned on. They only got to watch cable channels whenever we’re in my inlaws' or sister's houses in Manila so I guess it’s a real treat for them being able to see new episodes of some of their favorite shows without watching them on CDs over and over again.

As I am still a practical and thrifty mom, I can't help but think ... now I only have to worry when the electric bill comes ...
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