Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

What a hectic past few days! Yes, trying to get ready for Halloween, including finding some costumes. I *was* going to be the Queen of Hearts of Maleficent (that evil queen in Sleeping Beauty), but I knew we were going to be going trick or treating with the kids and there was NO way I was going to subject myself to being in a sauna-like costume in this weather! Ugh!

So, I came up with this:
That's totally homemade, too, sans the wig and hat, which came from Disney, of course. Check out the yellow parts to my costume: totally PAPER!!! And that sheriff star? From one of Nina Scraps Designs' kit, All-Stars. I printed it out, and Japa stuck his el cheapo silver sheriff star on it to make it look "authentic". Hehehehe. Ingenuity at it's best, eh?

Because I was Jesse, I told Japa to be Woody:Aren't we a pair? Hahahaha!

The kids wore their Literacy Night costumes of course, since Mama didn't want to spend any more money than was necessary.A layout I did with a W&W collab with Chere Edwards:Layout is clickable for credits :)

We did something new this Halloween. Japa made up a treasure hunt for the kids, which had them running all over the house looking for clues. The end was a huge "X" marks the spot, right above their loot bags, their final prize and "treasure".
Watch out for more Halloween pages from me.....when I get around to doing them AND posting them on this ole blog!


Friday, October 26, 2007

MY PT Session

Well, I went for my first physical therapy session since my slipped discs diagnosis. It was fine, no big deal, I think. The therapist, Mike, was extremely helpful, considering I was so much bigger than he was! Hehehe. This was pretty much what we did:
1. heat packs - to loosen the muscles in my lower back.

2. tens - those thingies that give off electrical pulses. I think I surprised Mike with how high I wanted the tens to be, hehehe.

3. ultrasound - supposed to give off really deep heat to relax the muscles in my back.

4. maaaajor stretching - my hamstrings were so tight, it wasn't even funny. Ok, well, it WAS funny in retrospect. Imagine this guy weighing no more than 150 pounds trying to stretch my logs, legs one by one. He would use all his body weight to stretch it out...and my leg would barely go 90 degrees!!!! Sheesh! Where did all my flexibility go???

5. exercises - one word: UGH! In other words, I had to strengthen my abdominal muscles (what abs???) INSIDE so they would help support my back. Yes, I already *know* that! I guess having to do it is another thing. I did crunches, butt-ups (yes, my term --- where I'd have to put only my arse up while everything was plastered down onto the bed, some back stretches kinda like hyperextensions which I absolutely detest! Oh, doing all that while holding my insides ala Kegel exercises! Tell me that isn't hard!!!
And surprisingly, I perspired! A lot! So much so that I had to take my pearl necklace off because I didn't want it to feel icky, hehehe. I started to sweat on the 7th minute...and I was like, WHOA! When I used to jog, it would take me 15-20 minutes before I'd break out in a sweat! So I guess this is good, eh?

Something to look forward to next week. I think. :)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Catching Up on Stuff at Work

Work, work, work. Always wanted to type that on my blog. Makes me feel like I did a lot of things at work, hehehehe. Well, I *did* finish the 2008 calendar for the office, and that's a major thing. Of course, to my dear mother who knows NOTHING about how long it takes to scrap (or, in office terms, "put together a layout"), it seemed that I moved slow. I told her creativity couldn't be hurried! Bwaahahahahaha!

Anyhoo, I did stay the whole day at the office. Actually working. :) Signing checks, doing some administrative stuff. Finally eh? Me going with Dad to therapy every MWF will necessitate me being at the office and putting in some time there at least TTH. At least for this week.

Off to have someone remit dollars to the States and get a status report of possible foreclosure on our real estate properties near Las Vegas. Need to finish this so I can scrap in peace tonight! :)

Here are some layouts I was working on when my EHD crashed (thank goodness they were close to being done before I lost everything!):




Karaoke, Anyone?

Another challenge over at the Sweet Shoppe Blog:

Your Karaoke Theme Song is "Since U Been Gone"

You are a very expressive and genuine person.
You're not so emotional that you wear your heart on your sleeve - but you're not afraid to show how you're truly feeling.

Whether you're singing along in the car or singing on stage, your favorite songs make you get a little carried away.
You're definitely the type most likely to dream of becoming a rock star!

You might also sing: "Livin' La Vida Loca," "I Will Survive," or "Hollaback Girl"

Stay away from people who sing: "I'll Make Love to You"

Oooooookay. Hahahaha. Can you guys even imagine me belting out Ricky Martin?!?!? Maybe when I've drunk a whole bottle of Tequila!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

PT Session #2 and a Trip to the Doctor

Initially, Dad refused to go to PT. He was frowning and was in a bad mood. No one wanted to wake him....until Mom called for me. Sigh! So I braved Dad's mood and pretty much woke him up to tell him that it was time for his physical therapy. And yes, he swore and got mad. I simply told him he had to go, that he needed to get ready. I told Aguila to call me when they were ready.

Half an hour later, I was still waiting! Sigh! Finally, Mom calls me and tells me Dad wanted to talk to me. I go to their bedroom and Dad asked me whether I was going to the doctor about therapy for MY back. I look at him and told him with a straight face that I would go IF and ONLY if he went to therapy that day, I'd go with him and see the doctor while he was at therapy.

And Dad got up and said he was going to get dressed. Aaargh! Hahahaha! At least he went to PT, right?!?

At PT, it was pretty much the same thing. I was smarter this time, though: I brought along my laptop so I could either scrap or work. I was pretty productive during the 2-hour session: I was able to do layouts for the office calendar. Now all I need are the quotes from St. Therese to complete them.

Oh, and yes, I did see the doctor. She told me my therapy would consist of ultrasound, heat pack and some exercises to strengthen my abs and back. Fine. I start on Friday.

At the rate I'm going, I'm lucky if I got some whole life insurance for myself. I may not feel old, but my body slowly breaking down keeps me thinking that I *am* getting old. Sigh!

Here's a layout of Dad when he turned 66. A little over a month before he had his latest stroke.

Click on the layout for credits.


What Should I Be for Halloween?

That is the question! To help me decide, I took this test to help me AND get a Sweet Rewards point as well :)

Your Halloween Costume Should Be

A Girl Scout

Hahahahaha!! Is that me????

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Speaking of Traveling...

...everything's still up in the air with regards to my going (or not!) to the States sometime next month. I would REALLY love to go and be there for Thanksgiving (and for the Thanksgiving sales, of course), but it really wouldn't be complete without the rest of my family with me, now would it? Also, there is the fact that Rogan will be receiving his first Holy Communion sometime early December. Sigh!

I guess I can shop via the internet, but sometimes it's just better to actually see and HOLD the product, you know? Hehehe. Instant gratification, when I can find it!

With the amount of traveling, you'd think I'd wise up and purchase some travel insurance. But's always the LAST thing on my mind! It can get pretty expensive with the amount of traveling we do, including the kids! At least though, we now have health insurance that covers us even internationally. It is the reimbursable type of insurance though, but hey, at least we're covered, right?


Click on the layouts to see them better, for the credits and to leave me some love :)



A Member of the Elite!

PREMIER Elite, that it. Whoohoohoo! I just got my Premier Elite card in the mail from Philippine Airlines---which means that somehow, during this past year, I had traveled a whopping 45,000 miles on PAL! I was trying to count actual flight miles, but I'm guessing they must have imputed some bonus miles for flying Business Class. I've already received two UTCs---Upgrade Travel Certificates, which, according to my brothers, means that I had reached the Premier Elite member.

Well, until I received my Premier Elite card, I didn't want to believe them! Hehehehe. This now means I'm a real travelpro, eh? *wink* That's a LOT of miles! Whew! And I really really REALLY want to go back to the States this year...but looks like Mom wants to go, too, and between Mom and I, it's best that one of us stay with Dad to overlook (and force him to do) his physical therapy.

Oh well. I can always shop online! :)





Monday, October 22, 2007

PT Session #1

Yay! Dad was a real trooper today! He did awesome during his first therapy session! Whoohoohoo! I was exhausted, and I was just sitting there watching him :) I guess it totally helped that Eva, his PT, was a pretty, fair girl. Sexist, I know, but hey, at this point, whatever works for Dad, right? I'll bring a camera next time just so you'll know what I mean.

Anyway, these are what was done to Dad:
1. Paraffin wax for his right hand to bring down the swelling/edema.
2. Electric stimulation for his right leg and right shoulder.
3. Arm exercises, where he raised his arms (one by one) up and above is head, while lying down.
4. Leg exercises, including lifting his bent leg and pushing against the PT's hand.
5. Ultrasound with some form of analgesic (?) to have some deep heating and prepare his shoulder for some exercises.
6. Touching the PT's hand while seated, including reaching across.
7. Getting a plastic cup from the PT's hand, putting in her other hand, stacked. (this pissed him off the most, when he was doing it with his right hand, because he couldn't twist his wrist very much).
8. Getting up from a seated position, and sitting down again. This I think tired him out the most.
9. Walking with the aid of the bars, including turning around.
That's a long list, isn't it? And Dad was exhausted at the end. But I explained to him that it was a good kind of exhaustion, that he had done SO much in the 2-hour session than what he would've done the whole day if he didn't have therapy.

When we got home, he went straight to the kitchen to have a snack. Then it was off to the bedroom for a short nap. He woke up and wanted to wait for Mom in the kitchen, and that's what he did! I expected him to have at least a 3 hour nap! And so Dad surprises all of us even more.....

Keeping my fingers crossed that his body won't be hurting too much tomorrow that it would make him use it as an excuse not to go to PT on Wednesday! :)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Housewives Scandal

Did you guys ever read/hear about that? How this Desperate Housewives episode totally put down the entire medical field of the Philippines. I know, it's a bit old news, but I want to put it on my blog NOW. So there. Hehehe.

Anyhoo, the hullabaloo over this particular episode was when Teri Hatcher derided Philippine medical schools; the perception was that the people in the medical profession who graduated from the Philippines weren't/aren't fit to work in the States. Or something like that.

Hang on, let me see if I can put in a You Tube video on here:

So anyway, I keep telling everyone that it's NOT Teri Hatcher's fault; she's just an actress paid to say those lines. Who is at fault are the WRITERS for putting in those racial words! Sigh! Don't they realized that a huge portion of the nurses and medtechs (for starters) in hospitals around the US are Filipino!??!?! Hello!!!

It's bad enough that OUR human resources are being taken from the country, but to subject them to this humiliation is a bit too much I think. As of this writing, I know I HAVE read about some apology that ABC issued to the Filipino community. Well HMP! That's the very least eh? I think they also pulled that particular scene from any and all episodes from being aired. Maybe they replaced it with something else. No idea.

Filipinos are finally being recognized the world over for their professionalism, their hard work, and their intelligence. Teachers, nurses, medical technicians, doctors, and yes, including domestic helpers. Heck, in a majority of cruise ships all over the world, the chances of there being a big group of Filipinos within the crew are enormous!

In the States, in the Middle East, and even in Europe. Filipinos have found jobs in london, just like they have found jobs elsewhere. And with Oasis Airlines having some awesome rates to go direct to London from Hong Kong, london jobs in just about any profession will seem more and more attractive to the hardworking Filipino.

So to all the OFWs out there, I salute you! And don't let ignorant idiotic scriptwriters get you down! :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Time for the Doctor

...for Dad, that is. I took him to the new Orthopedic Center right across the village. Finally! I guess he was feeling a tad bit helpless, and pissed that he couldn't do normal stuff anymore like feed himself and walk properly. All our talk about him needing some rehab to get some sort of order to his everyday life finally got to him! Yes!

So I took him to see Dra. Luisa Lim-Dungca. She was really nice but firm. She explained to Dad what he needed to do and, more importantly, WHY. I thought Dad wasn't listening that much, that he was typically tuning her out, but to my surprise, he would answer the doctor whenever she'd ask him a question! For some questions, he'd look to me, hoping I'd supply the answer, but I remained stubbornly silent, hehehe.

We were at the doctor's clinic for well over an hour, with the doctor doing most of the talking. She did an initial assessment of Dad's condition and she told us what she would be suggesting for his physical therapy. Her list was so long, it filled close to 2 pages! Hehehe. I'm just glad that Dad didn't see all of it, otherwise he'd probably have backed out!

We went past the good doctor's clinic hours, but she was really nice about it, talking animatedly while twirling her pearl necklace in her hands. Very accommodating, that lady doctor.

I think Mom had thought we had started doing the actual physical therapy because she kept texting me and asking what was taking us so long, hehehe. Oh and Mom, if you're reading this, the doctor said NOT to feed Dad...that he should at least try and put the food in his mouth himself!

I was tired from listening to the doctor and trying to explain Dad's medical history. And from sitting down for that long. I was glad to go home after that, but at least I had solicited a positive response from Dad that he was going to start therapy next week. The suggestion of starting tomorrow was on the chance that Dad would agree; he of course nixed that idea!

{Scraps of Raine}

As always, please click on the layout for a larger view, to see the credits or to leave me some love :)


Literacy Day

I actually got my arse up early today. I had to be at the kids' school by 8 am. All for the sake of taking pictures! Hehehehe. Can't help the scrapbooker in me, eh? The 3 big kids didn't have classes per se, but they did have to go to school dressed as a book or movie character. The school's version of Halloween, just before the semestral break.

I sent my camera with Ruby...just in case I was late, or decided I wanted to get more sleep, hehehe. But, I did get up and was dressed before 8 am. Checked the time on my Hamilton watch and off I went. I was a tad bit late, arriving at 830 *wink*, but it turns out I was JUST in time for the parade of the not-so-little-ones.

No pictures uploaded since I have been feeling lazy and out of it back twinge isn't helping any either. Grrr. But needless to say, none of the kids won any best in costume prize this year. Oh well. That goes to show that store bought CHEAP costumes won't do the trick! Hehehe. Back to the Disney shop...AFTER halloween for great deals.

Now, if one of the kids had worn the authentic Stitch costume, I am positive they would have won! Hmp!

Gotta rest up. I'm taking Dad to the doctor who will prescribe a rehab program for him. Need my strength for that, just in case Dad decides to act up and says he doesn't need PT!



As always, just click on the layout for credits!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Out of the Hospital!

Yeah! Dad has been cleared for going home from the hospital. I went there in the morning, knowing that Mom would need help with checking out of the hospital. Turns out that I wasn't really all that needed. Being in the Presidential Suite helped, I guess, hehehehe. She also knew someone from billing, so everything was done in the room, even paying with her credit card.

Dad looks really good. Nice and red color to his skin. He also walked with the aid of his walker and Aguila and Alex and Oca (a combination of ) right next to him to catch him if he teetered to one side. Dad was able to walk, putting emphasis on the right foot forward FIRST, so that that foot would take his weight and get stronger. This was at the advice of one of his in-hospital therapists.

We finally left the hospital at 130 and were homeward bound!

The good thing about this is that Mom can finally go on her US trip. She was scheduled to leave the day AFTER Dad was admitted. We told Dad that if he didn't want Mom to go in the first place, he should have just said instead of having a stroke. Hehehehe. He saw the humor in that :)

We've been telling Mom to go ahead with the trip since they were scheduled to go to Arizona for business, then to Washington, DC for fun fun FUN with Tita Belen and Roc. Lots of sightseeing and picture taking for sure. Hey Roc, if you're reading this, are you ladies heading over to New Yawk to get some Broadway tickets and watch a few shows? Drive? Fly? How far is that? Isn't that in the near vicinity? I.e., driving distance? Goes to show how much I know of east coast geography, hehehehe.

With Dad out of the hospital, it's going to be time for some rehab sessions with a therapist. We're going to see a doctor about his rehab program tomorrow and will schedule Dad for some sessions starting next week. With a schedule of sorts, this will definitely free up Mom to go to the States soon and make the trip with Tita B and Roc.

Ok, I'm off to back up my newly downloaded reset files :)


Halloween Treats

Just a quick post to show off the pictures I have of the Halloween cards I printed out for the kiddos.

Aren't they cute? :) I'm positive NO ONE ELSE in school will have these tomorrow, when the kids hand them out!

Can you believe I taped NINETY candy bars on these cards?!?!? That's how many classmates the kids have, total. Sigh! Having 4 kids in school all at the same time sure is going to be fun (insert sarcasm here, hehehe).

I am starting to dread the arrival of Christmas! Loooooaaaaads of stuff to do, starting off with their Christmas cards and gift cards. Man oh man oh man!

Ok, off to shower and get dressed for the hospital!

Christmas is Fast Approaching!

Ack! I just got done with the kids' halloween treat cards last night and thoughts of course turn to Christmas! Yikes! I am constantly on the lookout for loads of coupon codes that I can use while I shop online. Of course ONLINE! It's the best way to shop since I can't be in the States NOR can I stand to brave the holiday crowds. My dang back isn't helping me much either in that situation.

I know I can shop online and have it delivered to Polaris since family will be going back and forth in the next few months. So to you family out have been warned. Now PLEASE make sure you give me some space in your suitcases and boxes for when you come back! Hehehehe!

A few things on my list are a new laptop (HINT HINT HINT!!!), even though I know I just got a new iMac, hehehe. My poor laptop is so battered, bits and pieces are falling off! Seriously! But hey, it's still serviceable. The kids have been clamoring for their own Nintendo DS Lites, too. Sigh! The expense, the expense! On electronics alone! And Japa came home last night with a Sony brochure....looking at big screen TVs! Oh my! And where do I turn to to look at the best deals for these? Why, I go straight to Best Buy, with a side stop to Coupon Chief to get me some coveted coupons or codes for more savings!

I'm also on the lookout now for some deals at to get more of those anti-allergenic pillows I got for all of us. The kids want at least 2 pillows, and Japa and I use 2 pillows each. Silly me only bought 6 pillows total for all of us. What was I thinking! So off I go to look for those and order the dang pillows before they're sold out!

I really need to update my list, too. I know I've bought items to give away as Christmas gifts, but they are as yet unlabeled, unwrapped and have not been assigned to a person, hehehehe.

Ok, off to the hospital now. We're hoping Dad can come home today, and I'm the one who usually does the checking out of the hospital and the paperwork and the payment, etc.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Halloween Treats

I dragged myself out of bed today to work on the kids' Halloween treat cards. Instead of expensive loot bags, I decided to go with a bar of chocolate wafers taped to a halloween card. And of course I dug through my digi scrapping supplies to do it! I automatically reached for Dede Smith's Boo Bear Tearz since they are so darn cute! I also used these last year to label the loot bags of our kids during their Halloween party.

I did NINETY cards. Yes, 90!!! That's for the 4 kids' classes. Sigh! Education sure is expensive! hahahahaha! Anyway, I had to have them developed at a one-hour lab, then took out the price tags from the chocolate bars, then taped the said bars to the photo card. Easy peasy! But with my back hurting the past few days, it sure was a monumental task for me to be seated that long! Before stuffing the cards in plastic bags for the kids to take on Friday, I of course took some pictures..........which are still in the camera, waiting for me to download. I'll update this post with them soon!


Monday, October 15, 2007

Another Birthday and a Craft Project

Happy Birthday, Tita Rosie!

She's not here now, she's off to Beijing, China with Roselle and Roby, who surprised their mother for her 60th birthday. Fun, huh! I'm sure I'll hear great stories when they arrive sometime this week.

In the meantime, I have a craft project (sort of) to do. The kids are going to be having their Literacy Night on Friday and Saturday. This is when they get to dress up as their favorite fictional character. In short, it's Halloween time at their school :). The kids are all set: Raegan is going as a pirate girl, Rogan as a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Raine as a witch, and Ranger will probably borrow Riley's Buzz Lightyear costume.

The kids are set, but Mama's not, hehehe. I have yet to do their loot bags. Or Treat Cards, more like it. It's just easier. Even with my back, I made myself sit at the computer for a couple of hours doing Photoshop :).

I was thinking of printing them myself to try and save some bucks; cheap ink is so hard to find nowadays. And with home photo printing and printing reports and photos for the kids' homework, ink basically just flows, hehehe.

Despite the low prices of printers now, it is still quite difficult to find ink on sale. Economics, anyone? Ink producers KNOW that their product is a near-basic commodity in this hi-tech world. So of course they won't lower the prices of ink! It is difficult enough to find places that sell ink at low prices, the manufacturers still cannot come up with bigger ink cartridges to save me yet another trip to the store!

I wish we had a place here like Printpal, a place where they sell ink at uber low prices! They even offer free shipping! How cool is that! Plus, they offer coupons to give you even more savings! When I'm in the States and have a craft project, I know where I'm going to get my next batch of ink cartridges!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Yup, another birthday in the family!

Happy Birthday Ryanini! Anne, if you're reading this, give your husband a birthday hug from me. Ryan's name was included in our First Wednesday mass at the office earlier this month. What did Angela and Mikaela do for their dad?

That should be it as far as birthday greetings are concerned. Ryan and Anne live in Michigan and I haven't seen them in a looooong time! Last time I think was in Los Angeles at kena Valerie? Not sure anymore.

Anyhoo, just so I don't have a picture-less post, I'm going to put up more scraps!


More East Coast album pages:

My back is just killing me! I am pretty sure it has everything to do with the fact that I was at the hospital for a few hours with Dad in the ACSU. I made Mom go home for a late lunch (after I had gone to Ayala), and she was able to nap. I was with Dad, making sure that he didn't go to sleep for 4 hours straight since blood would be drawn to his blood. I forgot what it was, and I'm too lazy to get up to ask Mom. :)

I was starting to feel a twinge down the middle of the back of my thigh towards the back of my knee. I just KNEW it wasn't a good sign. Sigh! So although my whole body is loving the feel of my bed underneath me, my back is not a happy camper for sure. This spells trouble tomorrow for sure. :(


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Hospital Bound...and a Birthday

Dad woke up this morning and told Mom that he wanted to go to the hospital and be admitted for tests. Mom said thank God and asked him why the sudden change of heart. He said he knew he wasn't getting better and wanted the tests to be run on him to determine the extent of the stroke. Of course, he didn't say the word "stroke". He didn't want it to sound final.

So off we went to the ER again. His doctor went to see him and told him that he had had a stroke. At those words, Dad was in tears. It was the official word, and he couldn't do or say anything that would change it. Mom was looking worried and I told her there was no need to worry. Dad was of course being emotional at the doctor's words. Hearing the words from the doctor lent a sense of finality to his diagnosis. Stroke. A very mild one, but a stroke nonetheless.

I could easily tell what Dad was thinking:

1. Why is this happening to me?
2. Why another thing on top of all that the Lord has made me go through?
3. I'm a sick man and not getting younger.
4. I'm tired.

For my dear relatives reading my blog, feel free to let me know what possible thought Dad had when he heard those final words from the doctor. I know I am correct in my analysis....but let me know if you disagree with me, hehehe. And yes, it will be noted here on my blog!

So anyway, back to Dad. I guess he was uplifted a little bit when his doctor told him his stroke was a very mild stroke. That we had to do some tests to prevent the stroke from escalating and making him worse.

Aaaaand, we're back in the hospital. The ACSU, more specifically, or the Acute Stroke Unit. Just for one night, because his doctor wanted him monitored for the night to make sure there wasn't any stroke escalation.


A happy happy birthday to Roxanne! Hope this year is a productive, love-filled (wink!) and blessed one! May you have all the happiness you deserve! Are we eating out? Hehehe. Did you send out birthday invitations at all? If you did, I didn't receive any! *pouting here* Hehehe.


Couldn't have a picture-less post now, could I? :) These are pages for our East Coast album. As always, feel free to click on the pages for a bigger view, for the credits, and to leave me some luuuuv :)





Friday, October 12, 2007

Catching Up on My SCRAPS

Nothing exciting happening today :) Dad's doing well, considering he's gone through a stroke. However, he can't walk properly for long periods. He can traverse the hallway from his room and down the stairs, then he is wheeled from the bottom of the stairs all the way to the kitchen for his meals. At least he is making an effort to do that short walk and not just stay in bed the whole day. Small thing, but I'm grateful that he has enough strength to do this still.



Feel free to click on the pages to see the credits and leave me some comments at DST. :) I'm a bit lazy posting the comments now since I'm playing catch up, hehehe. Maybe when I've CAUGHT up!


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Trip to the Emergency Room

Mom and Dad went home from Cebu today. After one day. Apparently, Dad had a stroke last night and couldn't move his right leg. He was dragging his right foot and was keeling over to the right side when they were walking towards Chateau de Busay from the car.

Mom looked him over and observed his symptoms and concluded correctly that he had had a stroke. Instead of bringing him to the ER in Cebu, she opted to take the next available flight out to Manila. I guess she wanted Dad to be close to all his doctors just in case he was going to be admitted.

I picked them up at the airport and we went straight to Medical City. By this time, after the hour long trip, Dad was tired and antsy and didn't want to endure waiting in any ER for him to be checked. I texted his doctor asking if Dad could be seen asap when we got to the ER because he didn't want to wait and was pushing us to go straight home.

So we got to the ER, looked for the doctor on duty and got attended to right away. We wanted an MRI done, but the MRI machines were closed for the night, so we settled for a CT scan. We had to wait for the plates and the doctor to read the initial results to clear Dad for going home.

Yes, going home. My dear STUBBORN father had decided on his own that he did NOT want to sleep in the hospital tonight!!! Aaaargh! So we told him we had to wait to get clearance from the attending doctor in the ER. He turned docile as a lamb and said okay. *roll eyes* Go figure. So we wait under the clear, bright ceiling light of the emergency room. I was with Dad inside while Mom talked to Tita Vykh and company outside (they had rushed to the hospital when they heard bits and pieces of why Dad was returning to Manila after only one day).

Finally Dad was cleared and we all went home. Very. very late. But somehow I knew Dad was ok because the instant we got home, he wanted to go straight to the kitchen because he was HUNGRY! Hehehe. Crossing my fingers that everything will be ok!

Catching Up on My SCRAPS...again

Yes, well. One of my major blog goals is to be updated with all my scraps.....meaning, I want to blog about what I scrapped that day, hehehehe. Sigh! At the rate I'm going, I'll forever be updating! But this blog was really intended for me to load my scraps here, so I can see it away from all the other wonderful layouts in the galleries. I.e., so mine can shine, hehehehe! Hey, it's my blog!

Just a few catch up scraps because they're related (click on the layout for credits, and to leave me some comments):

Yup, they're all going in our East Coast album! I'm hoping to complete a few (actually, a LOT) more before the month ends so I can send those in for another Shutterfly book.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Whoohoo! I'm featured at Scrappers Daily Dose as Layout of the Day with this newly scrapped page of Rod and Zhar:
Loved how this turned out, actually, considering that I wanted to use only that ONE pic! Hehehe.

That's it. Just wanted to TOOT! Back to scrapping and downloading and fixing my files :)


Precious Comfort

Take a look at this totally FAB new kit:
It's a collab between designers Jan Crowley and Meredith Fenwick, along with their guest designer for the month, Nancie Rowe Janitz. It's available at Songbird Avenue; grab it before it's gone forever at the end of the month! Each kit at the Avenue always has a great template from Janet Phillips, one of my fave template designers! And almost all of the $8 goes to charity (minus Paypal fees). This month's charity is the St. Jude Children's Hospital.

When I saw this kit, I *immediately* grabbed it. Hey Sisterhood! Isn't this a PERFECT kit for our challenges? This will most definitely be used for the girls' 3rd month pages....hoping to squeeze out boy pages from it, too!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Happy 3rd Birthday to my Baby!!!

Ranger turns 3 today! He's a big boy now. Waaaaah!!! He's growing up, that's for sure, and with him going to school now, it just finalized a lot of things in the growing up department. Sigh. Don't you wish you could hang on to them as babies just a wee little bit longer? :)

Love those pics up there. One of my faves is that one of diabetic Dad enjoying his ice cream! Sigh! hehehe. It was a teeny scoop, but he didn't complain--he just enjoyed it! That big pic in the middle is Ranger enjoying his early birthday present from Ninang Bag: the huge Island of Sodor mat! He's also playing with another early birthday present from Tita Zhar and Ninong Rod: Dennis the train. And yes, he's munching on french fries for his was what he wanted to eat after mass, hehehe.

We didn't have much activities, just eating and the kids running around. We did set up the inflatable jumping thing, but it was drizzling and the kids waited oh-so-patiently for it to stop raining so they could jump inside :)

Did you see the cake and streamer I had made? Cute huh? I also made some bag tags as giveaways, although not everyone had Thomas obviously. The girls had high school musical 2, there were Pokemon cards, as well as Pooh. Customized with each kid's name of course! :)

Am pooped!


Saturday, October 06, 2007

Day Out with My Girl

First thing in the morning, Raine and I did the rounds of the malls, looking for a costume for her Ferdinand Magellan character for Portfolio Night. I still have NO idea why they cast my daughter to do a guy's part, when there were boys in her class. The only things I can think of is that Raine is mestiza, and the fact that she can memorize a lot of a lines in a short span of time probably helped her get the part!

We went to SM North, thinking that was the *main* department store. I was peeved that they had a teeny tiny area dedicated to costumes! I told a salesperson that they shouldn't be coming out with a costume magazine if they didn't have actual costumes to back them up! Grrrr!

So off we went to SM Megamall. We found this costume in kids' sizes. Thank goodness Raine fit in a medium! Otherwise, we'd be sooo out of options! The sleeves aren't as full, obviously, and they came to just above her wrists, hehehe. The bodice was black, the same as the pants. Her costume came with a multi colored sash as well. She looked pretty cute in it. She had to borrow high heeled boots from Tita Bang.....which of course she absolutely LOVED!

At least we don't have to alter anything. Tie her hair in a bun, slip her feet in the big boots, and she's good to go! :) I'll upload a photo of her when she tries it on.

Aside from the Magellan costume, Raine begged for a witch costume. I reminded her that her school had a Literacy Night, which meant she had to think of a character from a book to get her witch costume. She immediately responded that all fairy tales had a witch.....and she asked me the name of Harry Potter's friend. Hermione, I told her. She decided that she was going to be Hermione, hehehe.

The witch costume had little sprinkles of orange stars all over. We added a purple-wrapped broomstick to go with her purple halloween bucket. And Raine was a happy little girl :) We got Raegan a Girl Pirate costume. Thank goodness Raegan agreed to being a pirate.....I have been itching to use the Kate Hadfield Pirate Doodles I bought last month! Hhehehehe!

Finally, after I felt that we walked all over the place, Raine decided she was hungry and wanted McDonald's. Which was in the OTHER building at Megamall. Waaaaaah!!!! Off we went, clutching our costume finds for the day. After ordering, I collapsed on a chair and watched Raine wolf down her chicken nuggets and rice, fries and juice before I attempted to eat my QPC.

Suddenly, Raine looked up and told me, "Mama, this has been the BEST day of my life! We got costumes and we're eating at McDonald's!". Hehehe. But at those words, suddenly all the tiredness I had been feeling just melted away. Leaving me to gawk at my innocent daughter and wonder how those few words could lift my spirit. :)

Ahhhh....I can see a layout coming here: Costumes. McDonald's. Tiredness. At your daughter's words, the moment is PRICELESS.


I absolutely HAD to have Exotic Adventure, a humongo collab kit between Christina Renee, Emily Merritt, Nancy Comelab and Tiff Brady. I unearthed these photos just so I could scrap them:
GIRAFFERaegan on a "safari trip" at Legoland.

Journaling reads: Giraffes are one of the world's tallest mammals. They are well known for their long necks, long legs, and spotted patterns. A giraffe's 6-foot neck weighs about 600 pounds. The legs of a giraffe are also 6 feet long. The back legs look shorter than the front legs, but they are about the same length.

Credits: kit - Exotic Adventure, a collab by Christina Renee, Emily Merritt, Nancy Comelab and Tiff Brady; font - Adler, DJB Lorraine1 by Darcy Baldwin at The Digi Chick; template - modified from From My Gallery set by Janet Phillips

ZEBRARaegan and Reese on a Legoland ride.

Journaling reads: Zebras are generally thought to have white coats with black (sometimes brown) stripes. That's because if you look at most zebras, the stripes end on their bellies and toward the insides of the legs, and the rest is all white. However, some zebras are born with genetic variations that make them all black with white stripes, or mostly dark with the striped pattern only on part of their coats.

Credits: kit - Exotic Adventure, a collab by Christina Renee, Emily Merritt, Nancy Comelab and Tiff Brady; circle stitches - Imperfect Stitches by Dani Mogstad; flowers - Creating Beauty by Weeds and Wildflowers; font - DJB Chere by Darcy Baldwin at The Digi Chick; template - A Little Eclectic 7 by Janet Phillips

CHEETAHRaine and Mamalyn at Legoland.

Journaling reads: The cheetah is the fastest land animal in the world. They run at speeds of up to 70 miles per hour Cheetahs are off the ground more than half of their running time! Cheetahs are tan in color with black spots all over their bodies.

Credits: kit - Exotic Adventure, a collab by Christina Renee, Emily Merritt, Nancy Comelab and Tiff Brady; tag - by Rina Kroes; circle stitches - Imperfect Stitches by Dani Mogstad; notepaper - Taking Notes by Weeds and Wildflowers; grass - by Corina Nielsen; photo concave bend action - by Jen Caputo

LEGO MONKEYRaegan and the Monkeys of Legoland.

Journaling reads: Raegan was enthralled by the Lego bricks that formed these monkeys and the bunches of bananas.

Credits: kit - Exotic Adventure, a collab by Christina Renee, Emily Merritt, Nancy Comelab and Tiff Brady; frames - Photo Duos Frame Group by Katie the Scrapbook Lady at The Digi Shoppe; dark green leaves - by Mermaid's Haven; light green leaves - by Kim De Smet; sequins - Fancy Sequin Accents by Chere Edwards; font - DJB Lindy by Darcy Baldwin at The Digi Chick


Friday, October 05, 2007

Ranger and School

And so ends Ranger's first week (ok, 4 days) in school. There are some huge differences in his attitude, thank goodness! He went from "are you going to school---NOPE!" to "where are you going---SCHOOL!" type of conversations.

Ranger used to:
1. stay up late at night
2. wake up around 9ish in the morning
3. lay in bed and watch TV
4. eat and watch TV
5. just watch TV

With school, Ranger now:
1. goes to sleep earlier than usual (hehehe---we haven't gotten to an 830 pm bedtime just yet!)
2. is woken earlier than usual (7 am on the dot!)
3. cries "I SLEEP!" whenever yaya wakes him
4. howls in the bathroom during his morning shower
5. calms down after his shower and is semi-excited to go to school
6. eats breakfast earlier than usual (sure, he watches some TV!)
7. bounds back into the room to say BYE to us, all excited for school.

I guess for Ranger, it's a step by step process where his body and his mind has to adjust getting up so early in the morning. Hehehehe. But by the time he is in school, he allows yaya to lead him to his classroom, and he is off! BY HIMSELF!!! Whoohoohoo!!!
No more crying, no more wailing. He has even started clapping his hands and singing some song (that I can't distinguish).....which leads me to believe that he has learned this from school. He actually picked up something!!! YEAH!!!

Now, to change all that watching TV part.......

It will probably be easier when we're back home after all the renovation is done, but I'll still let him stay in front of the computer and let him use lots of educational software. I know the 3 older kids have a whole set of those lying around. We just need to get organized more. He's already started on some kids educational games; the Jump Start series is one of the BEST software out there for this. He is already familiar with the Baby and the Toddler starters. It'll be colors and numbers next, with some emphasis on some math software for him to have an easier time at school. Raegan, Rogan and Raine all started with the Jump Start series and I can say that the money I spent on those programs were SO worth it!

School is SOOO competitive nowadays! Yes, even for the little ones. Idiotic, really, since they're only kids, but I've heard some moms going overboard with tutors AND Kumon AND a whole host of other extra curricular activities AFTER regular school. For preschoolers!!! Ugh. Overboard, I tell you. I'm with the school of thought that says that school should be FUN, especially for the little ones.

With the presence of TV and computers, parents can use these wisely to help make learning fun for the kids. That's always been my goal (that, and books of course!) for the kids. I want the m to have fun. When they have fun, it's just so much easier for them to learn. Learning and Fun. They should go hand in hand, yes? :)

Birthday Preparations

Sigh! I knew I should have gone with McDonald's for Ranger's party! Now I'm knee deep in birthday preparations, I get tired just thinking about what I still need to do!

I've finished designing the party streamer and the mini streamers for Thomas. Those went to the printer's yesterday, and I'm expecting it sometime today. I am finishing up the giveaways for the kiddos, NOT including their loot bags. Still have to do those.

Next time, I am NOT going to listen to Japa when he says "let's just have the party at home". Yeah. I agreed to having it at home on the condition that there NOT be any poker party afterwards. With the boys all congregating during the party, I am just foreseeing that there will be talk of playing "for a few hours only." Uh-uh. Nipping that in the bud before any such thought crosses their minds.

Ok, the streamers just arrived and I like them! :)

Pretty cute, huh? Only thing is, I should've used Thomas' friends for the smaller streamers. Ranger would've loved that for sure!

Some more birthday prep things to do:
1. order his cake (Thomas, of course!)
2. shop for loot bag and items for loot bag
3. wrap Ranger's presents
4. print and decorate loot bag (box, more like it)
5. order some cupcakes to go with the cake
6. finalize orders for ice cream and barbecue
7. double check that the hamburgers are being made
8. double check that the spaghetti sauce ingredients are ready


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Hey Honeymooners!

Randy and Stella, if you guys are reading this, this post is for you. When you leave for your honeymoon later on in the month (or is it next month? I keep forgetting), check out these Hôtels en Paris before you go. Just in case you find some good deals. Wouldn't hurt eh? We all know how expensive Hôtels in Paris are, just because you want to stay in the city center. Who wouldn't, with major attractions such as the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe?

Be sure to go to the TOP of the Eiffel for a mahvelous view of the city. Not to be missed for sure. And if you're feeling adventurous and in shape, CLIMB the stairs, hehehehe. Not the whole way, but 2/3 of the way, if memory serves me right. Then you have no choice but to take the elevator to go all the way to the top. Breathtaking, and SO worth the climb!

Oh and the Louvre. I know you guys loved the movie (so much so that dear Randy read the book!), the Da Vinci Code, so I'm sure you won't miss this humongo museum.

I remember when we went there more than 20 years ago (eek!), we rushed through the museum because we had NO idea how important this building was! Shame, shame, shame! But hey, with the movie out, I'm sure there are TONS of Da Vinci Code tours out there, hehehe. Take lots of photos, please, so I can tour vicariously through you guys! :)

Let's see, trying to find an unusual place for you guys to see while you're there.....All I can think of is Napoleon's Tomb...the Arceos and
I went here; when we toured with Mom and Dad, I don't recall going to see Napoleon's Tomb. So yeah, it's probably worth a trip :)

With so many attractions in the city itself, I'm sure it'll be worth your while to find some Paris H
ôtels just so you don't lose so much valuable tour time going to and from your hotel.

Will blog if I find more info. Sure, I can email....but this is more fun! Hehehehe!