Family

 

 

LaDainian Tomlinson 5K 2014

As early as March, it was decided (by me) that my boys will run 5k this June. Supporting the San Diego Chargers players’ individual foundation, I ran the Philip Rivers 5k before. Now, it’s LaDainian Tomlinson 5k, this time it’s my husband’s turn plus Adrian. I registered them early via Living Social (yes, there’s coupon). It’s Adrian’s 2nd 5k this year so hopefully we will get to convince Mich next time to run too. This 5k run held at Point Loma, San Diego has given support to several children’s charities under The Tomlinson’s Touching Lives Foundation.

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Trial run by father and son just for picture (above) purposes since we arrived before 7AM to pick up their bibs and packets. Adrian’s bright neon color attire was a smart idea helping me to spot him easily. Below, Adrian sprinted and beat these two guys at the finish line. His time was 27:35.

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The night before the race, I was preparing in case Laurence backs out. Looking at him (below), he had a blast! Feels great to finish your first 5k. Next time, we will do 10k, then hopefully half marathon.

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They’re not top finishers. It’s just that every finisher gets a medal. Haha! At least daddy has a souvenir of his first 5k run. He is not a sporty type of person so it’s really a breakthrough.

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 Here, the photographers were having a grand time after a yummy breakfast at Panera, selfie time!

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 Going home, we dropped by Manila Sunset Grill and feasted on Filipino food. Yay!

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Ad’s Promotion Day

adpromotionWay to go Champ-o-Rado! Congratulations to our resident genius! We are so glad that you’ve finished your middle school with excellent grades. Your teachers’ comments/feedbacks gave us assurance that you’ll achieve more in the coming years. It was an easy transition for you from being home schooled to mingling with many kids in a traditional school. Though I missed the times that we pray for our nation weekly, I know that you’re continuously doing it on a personal basis. If only I could home school you and Mich forever.

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It’s a privilege for our kids to have been educated in this school where people are excellent and always ready to serve. It was so funny to see the assistant principal (guy on the right) wearing shorts, sando and rubber shoes while arranging the stage prior to the ceremony. It only shows that position doesn’t matter. What matters is how a person can do something without thinking of who he is in his field.

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This part of California is dominated by Asians, as a proof, here are the asian boys in 8th grade class. I don’t know if these are Adrian’s  Starbucks buddies but I know they’re some of his friends. There’s a nearby Starbucks in middle school so that’s their favorite hangout every Thursday.

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We celebrated over a super late lunch / early dinner with his favorite sister in the world. And his sister made sure that she enjoyed all the food coz she said she had ice cream for lunch in school. Sorry about the pic Ad, the photos of our lunch are all food except this one.

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 Red Lobster June 2014

photo credit: Brown Photography (first photo)

Happy Father’s Day

dad in build a bear Dear Daddy,

Thank you for all that you have done for me. You have supported me in many things, even if it’s like I just want to go to the pool. I realized that you do so many things for us, and you work so hard. I can’t concentrate on things like you do. You are always there to help me. With homework. It can be so confusing. You really do a lot for me, like carrying me from the couch to my bed, holding my new teddy in the picture above, blowdrying my hair last night that Kuya said you did, playing with Poochie while making it look funny, and when we used to live in Fox Creek, I fell asleep in the car and you and Mom brought me inside, brushed my teeth while i was asleep, then put me on the top bunk of the bed. That’s right, I remembered that. Somehow… Anyways, I know that you aren’t a big fan of cooking, but I remember when you used to make bacon-wrapped jalapenos. I never like the jalapenos, but I did like the bacon! Speaking of “cooking”, when will you make more crepes? Those were sooo good! Anyways, I love you, and Happy Father’s Day!! 😀

Love, Michelle

Thank you dad! You are most supportive and loving. I know that you always try your best to help us and provide for us. Whenever you talk to me or Mich, you always try to make it as easy to understand for us. I remember all the time we spent doing things like fishing, rc flying, road trips, swimming, hiking and more. I am really happy that you are my dad. I’ll never forget the amount of work you do to provide for us. I also will never forget your support for our interests, even when they don’t exactly interest you. You are a really hard worker too, always reminding us and yourself to do the best we can in whatever were doing. Thank you for helping us in whatever we do and blessing us with the things that we want but don’t need. Happy Father’s Day! I love you.

-Adrian

IMG_0371picture taken May 2005 (Manila Bay)

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June 2014 Gyukaku, Scripps Ranch

Honoring Our Mother

If there are treasures on earth that are so abundant yet so priceless, they are what we call mothers. My mother in-law was an example of a simple person who has an extraordinary mothering skills like that of a mother hen. Her inner strength enabled their family surpass the tests of family life. She may not be healthy all the time but she had a strong sense of care for her family. I’ve seen her qualities through the years and I admire her for that. She may not be perfect as nobody is perfect but the skills of motherhood is overflowing in her life. She devoted herself taking care of her family until the very end, a noble task that many mothers can’t do nowadays.

nanay1I have vivid memories of her when we went back to Manila two years ago. I’ve seen how happy and content she was being reunited with all of her children and grandchildren. The picture that left an imprint in my mind was when I saw her watching a television show with satisfaction and laughing her heart out alone while everyone was in the living room during her 59th birthday celebration. It was so nice to see a person happy even if we just had a simple celebration.

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Multiple complications from diabetes and kidney malfunction took her away from us last week. It was a battle of more than a month in the hospital. But God was in the midst of it all. Truly, God’s sufficient grace enabled everyone in the family to do what they can for our mother. And God was so good. We know that she is now enjoying the place where there’s no pain and suffering but pure joy and the presence of our Almighty. We were not able to go back home but we were given the chance to tell her how much we love her, thank her for her life and assure her that we will be living our lives well.

I will not forget how we had snacks one time she visited me in my office. That was probably more than 10 years ago. It was unusual to spend time together during office hours but I am glad we did because most of the time we see each other with everyone else around. I thank her for all the time and effort she made for me and my family. I will always remember how she looked after us whenever there’s an event or occasion. She always made sure that we have seats, choicest food and most of all my kids were treated well.

During our light moments, mother in-law would always share so many stories about my husband when he was young. It made me feel and see how my husband’s childhood was like. She even gave me my husband’s baby shoes and a toy that we let Adrian play with but unfortunately I was not able to keep. I wish I could at least have taken a photo of those (no phone cameras and selfies yet that time). I have so many things to be grateful for her life but the best legacy given to me was giving birth to my husband and raising him to be a fine, gentle and loving person.

Nanay, you are forever in our hearts.

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 Nanay Lydia with her granddaughters (Greenbelt Makati City 2005)

 

 

 

Cooking Adventure: Deokbokki

It’s been a year since our visit to Seoul, Korea. We’ve watched a lot of Korean dramas that visiting Asia would not be complete without a tour of Seoul and a taste of their dishes.

My personal favorite Korean dish is tofu stew. I can skip any Korean dish except this one. When our family decided to abstain from eating out for forty days, I developed this craving for my favorite Korean food. Good thing about living in this part of the world is that Korean market is just around the corner, selling many ingredients. Thanks to recipes online, I can create my soup at home.

(Namdaemun Market: South Korea)

When we were on tour to different places in Seoul, we tried our best to try Korean food from streets, restaurants and malls. As much as possible we skipped McDonald’s and other common tourist food. We tried what looked appealing to us. We tried street food where you would just eat whatever you want and pay. One of them is Deokbokki, a rice cake shaped like a cylinder with hot and spicy sauce. The ahjummas (old ladies) are selling these from enclosed food stalls along the street. But most of the ahjummas don’t speak English. It’s good that when we ate deokbokki and other fish balls in skewers, there’s this young lady that helped us interpret what the ahjumma was saying.

(deokbokki I cooked at home)
We’re not crazy about deokbokki but I can’t help cooking when there are available ingredients and best of all, they’re on sale, nothing to lose. We tried it and it was good, spicy though. I got the recipe from Maangchi.

Digging for Gemstones: Feels Like an Archaeologist

by Michelle
Today is my first time to write my own blog entry. My mom helped me and showed me how to choose the pictures. After a few minutes, I found my subject: the time I dug twelve gemstones from a block of sandstone.
Here, I started to get in more and more. It took me about ten minutes to find my first gemstone, serpentine. Later, I started finding more and more, until I found all twelve. I was really excited, because I felt like an archaeologist!
After a long time of digging, I knew I was getting closer to the finish. I found out that archaeologists really have to work hard, because if they found ancient stuff, they have to dust it with a brush(like me!), so they won’t break any treasures. I was glad when my brother helped me, even if he found big, broken chunks of rock, and tried to break it.
Actually, I don’t even know how long it took me to find all twelve(the picture just shows nine of the rocks), but I know that it took me a very long time! I still had to find two more gemstones, but my dad told me to sleep because it was midnight. So the next morning, I finished the rest, and put all of what I found on a box. When my mom woke up, she didn’t know where I put the gemstones, so she picked up the box, but before she could throw it away, she saw my gemstones fall into the carpet. She only found eleven of it, but then I found the twelfth one next to the sandstone! Also, the gemstones that I found were: One rock crystal, one fluorite, tree rose quartz, one amazonite, one jasper, one serpentine, one sodalite, one agate, and one mahogany obsidian.

Happy Heart’s Day

We had a simple valentine celebration at home. I prepared Chicken Madeira Cheesecake Factory style and chocolate chip cookies topped with vanilla ice cream dessert for my date tonight since we can’t go out. I commissioned two lovable kids to be our musicians and servers. Thanks Ad & Mich! 

I’m Back!

After hibernating for about two years, our blog site has now resurrected! I will be inviting my kids & husband to contribute from time to time. It has always been my goal to update this site but I don’t know what happened. I will just backtrack from the time I stopped just like in the movies.

So to start anew and since it’s the love month, I’d like to touch on one of the 5 love languages – Quality Time. As a family, we love going out and spending time with or without plans. Spending quality time is really a must for our family. We make sure that even if our weekdays are full with individual schedules, our weekends definitely are always busy (I figured out now why I have tons of chores every Monday).

Last week was one of those outdoor fun activities we had. We went to Ogden to see their Winterfest Activities. We’ve learned that they brought tons of snow (460 large dump trucks) from different areas such as Hinckley Airport and paved them up along the 25th street for the event. This was their 2nd year hosting the event and about 12,000 spectators went in the two-day event.

We spent more than 4 hours and we had so much fun. There were too many activities that we don’t know which one to go to. We spent more time with the sled and ski and was distracted by the food booth that’s why we missed the skijoring competition. Skijoring is a winter sport where a person on skis is pulled by a horse.

We started off with watching the Toboggan (Sled) Parade mostly by sponsors. One of them is Coca Cola, thus we have this photo of the Coca Cola Polar Bear.

Then, sledding. Notice how high was the starting point. It’s as high as the traffic light.

We took the opportunity to try cross country skiing with skis, poles and shoes provided by Weber State University.

There were many activities happening simultaneously like snowmobile racing, polar bear swim event, flag football competition. Other activities include junior jazz basketball, 5K run, ski-bike race, live music, dog show, human dog sled race. Plus the many booths that served yummy food. We tried Hawaiian chicken barbecue, pulled pork sandwich, the very popular ribbon fries with cheese and a big buffalo burger.

After the event we went home exhausted but happy. We’re glad we went to Ogden that day.

Happy Holidays!!!!

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Field Trip at Ogden Nature Center Sept 2008



Most of the kids here who went to field trip had their first school bus ride. One of them is Michelle. They had fun inside the bus. I happened to be there as the parent volunteer to capture the moments of Mich’s first school field trip. Inside the bus, the kids were singing “The Wheels of the Bus”. 

 
It was hot out in the field. Some kids were complaining of getting tired and thirsty. Kids get to listen to the tour guide explaining the ecosystem, different animals in the wild, how they thrive in such environment. They also played a hiding game so they could feel how animals get to camouflage themselves when enemies are watching. They were also toured to see some big birds like owls and eagles. 
 
It was a different learning experience for these little ones and it was just so amazing to hear how they reason when asked about what they know and think about nature. 
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