Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I Sing, I Shout... Blame it on Mom!

'If you want to know if you're a success in parenting, look at your kids... they mirror you!'  I've heard about this before.  Everything is not about DNA:  I-N-F-L-U-E-N-C-E make or break a child's character.  A thief's child may or may not be his successor depending on how the kid was raised.

I find it really entertaining how families have the same voices.  My sister, Sarah, and I loved to confuse our callers with our voices on the telephone, 'which one was Penny or Sarah?'.  Of course, almost everyone got fooled. Lol!  And, it's not only the voices but there are certain attitudes and personalities in one sister that you can find in another.  You don't need to be twins to be identical, huh?  And sometimes, these similarities make them hate each other.

Sarah often tells me how I have the same mothering styles with, of course, my mom.  To me, I feel like a hero with a big medal of honor when she says that.  I've seen my mom sacrificing good hours of sleep to attend to our needs until we wave goodbye for school.  And until now, she does that although my siblings have already passed the teenage years a decade ago. Oh, I've got so much treasured memories of my mom's generosity that I could go on for years.  But this post is dedicated to how I see myself in my kids.

'I sing' ... Bea and Me
My sister and I grew up in the music of Sandi Patty and Kid's Praise.  Go ahead and click on her name and you'll understand why it's been difficult for us to sing pop music.  (I always have this operatic voice that I sound so out of place singing songs you hear on the radio, being branded as Sylvia Latore a couple times, or being criticized as having 'not' a versatile voice.  But that's the whole point, this voice doesn't sing earthly songs... sing to the Lord!)  And people go, "Did you have formal voice training?" every time they hear me sing the first time.  Nah... we didn't attend any vocal class... it's just Sandi singing in the background of each Saturday morning cleaning the house.  When my papa led us to Jesus, he also trained our ears to appreciate gospel or christian songs ONLY, without realizing it.  And I don't want to change things a bit!

Now, for my kids... I dunno, but I am always lazy playing christian music in the house.  In fact, I am lazy switching the player/radio on in the house.  I felt guilty about this because I wanted my children to have the same exposure we had to this genre.  But I love to sing... I always sing.  I rehearse choir songs in the house, I sing old choir songs in the house, I sing wedding songs in the house... and, they're listening!  Bea's singing choir songs, old choir songs, and wedding songs in the house WITH vibrato.  Wow!  One Saturday, I was working and she went up to ask in her operatic sound if i had plans of eating.  This morning (the main reason why I am so inspired to write this post), I heard her singing "Be Strong in the Lord" while taking a bath.

Songs She's Singing... blame it on me:
  • Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled - This is her favorite.  We just sung this in the choir last Sunday.
  • Be Strong In the Lord - a very old choir song.
  • Think of Me - only the last part where all the lyrics was 'Ahhh'
  • Favorite Things - This song was taught in school and she's so fond of it along with the other songs like Sixteen Going on Seventeen, So Long, Farewell, Do-Re-Mi.  Needless to say, she fell in love to a classic movie, which I am really happy about.
  • Alin-Alin ang Naiba - A song from Batibot.  One morning, while she was playing, I heard her sing this sooooo beautifully, my heart jumped.
  • Bayan Ko - They sung this at school
  • You Belong With Me - The only pop song in the list.
Hans sings, too, but not as seriously as Bea.  But I find him interested to learn how to play the piano.  I'll teach him as soon as God delivers the piano!

Bea didn't get my facial features ('good thing', I know you'll say!) but she had my attitude, my bad attitude.  She loves arts and crafts, which is so Tita Ruth; loves to draw (which is so Tito Ely).  She loves to dance but her body is not giving her the grace of Ate Micah.  She begs me to bake with her and she wants this for a career in the future.  Listen to her speak to and teach Hans then, you'll say, "She's really Penny's".  Oh I don't like how that sounded... but, nevertheless...

'I shout' ... Hans and Me
Hans always raise his voice a good number of times each day, especially when I begin to put pressure on them.  Was this because I'm always shouting?  Yeah, go ahead and make that 'tsk, tsk, tsk'.  I know, right!  But they won't take me seriously and obey unless I shout.  Everyday I'm pressed by time to do quite a lot of things and finish them before my personal deadline and shouting is my means of releasing the tension.  I tell them one, two, three times of what to do with the ideal sweet mommy voice, and what do I get...they ignore me!  Then I start to shout and they'll take my pace.  But I don't shout all the time, alright!  Although I shout, the hugs and kisses and praises I give them are more than the required dose a parent should give each day.

One day I was working, then Hans went up and suddenly started to kiss and smell my armpit.  Lol!  I know, that was so unexpected.  He's so sweet, yeah, but not the armpit!  I asked him why, and he said, "Ginagaya lang kita, Mommy" (I'm just imitating you, Mommy).  I play with him, always, that I think he thinks we're always on 'play mode'.  Afternoon is our yakapan (hugs) and/or harutan (wrestling is our favorite game) time.

My ultimate prayer is for the rapture to come before everyone of my loved ones passes death.  Next to that, of course, every christian parent's prayer is to see their kids loving Jesus.  When I was still playing the piano on congregational singing, one Sunday we had to miss church because of a very bad weather.  Then Bea said, "Mommy, who's gonna play the piano?".  I was so glad hearing this from her.  That means, I passed this very important value on her... how important it is to go to church every Sunday.

DISCLAIMER:  I don't claim to be a good singer: coz I always struggle hitting high notes with confidence in front of an audience, I don't sing like Sarah in some songs, and I couldn't sing 4 measures in one breath.  Also, I am not an expert in mothering.  There's still quite a lot of things to learn.  I often miss out on some important values but I always ask for God's guidance.

Like this post? Please share yours.  I'd love to read your comments.

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How My Husband Loves Me

A few Saturdays ago, I gave in to the dragon inside me. Maybe I was so tired, failed to balance work and chores (again!). In my attempt to clean the room, I felt so angry that I threw everything I touched while I deliver my monologue. I was so furious that I was surprised I didn’t cry but I was really trembling.
I left the house with the kids for a meeting in Makati, but I didn’t come back home. I stayed in my parents’ house until Sunday. Finally, I went home after church just because of the kids’ school the next day, otherwise, I’d stay there forever.
I didn’t do my usual weekday morning routine the following day, but instead I woke him up and told him I’m not doing any household chore ever again. He responded by saying he’s looking for a maid.
He never (ever) fought back. He never (ever) shouted back. He never (ever) laid his hands on me. He just loved me and always work his way to prove that LOVE.
He sent the kids to school. Then, I heard the cry of the washing machine.

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Review: Montagne Jeunesse Chocolate Mask

I've read so many good reviews about this mask. Last Saturday, I had a try of this mask with my daughter (8 y/o) and son (6 y/o).  They were as equally excited as I was.

I'll have a thorough review on this soon. Gotta keep you hanging for now... :-)

Until then.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Simple Things Make Me Joyful

Do you remember the time when your mom forced you to do household chores? Haha, I vividly remember mine.  She keeps on telling us that we needed the training so things would be easier when we become mothers.  I remember one time I answered back, "I'll make sure I'll marry a man who's gonna be able to pay for a helper".

I got pregnant two (2) months after our wedding.  The hormones overpowered me so Boyet, my husband, and I started to build a home in the house he purchased a few years back... just the two of us.  I didn't realize what I'm putting myself into until the first week of just us, two, that I had to cook, clean the house, cook again for myself, do the laundry, fold clothes, iron, manage the clothes, and so on... I felt heavier and heavier month after month.

Thankfully, I got help when I gave birth... but not all the time.  Well, that's another story.

Then I worked, resigned, worked again, resigned, then worked again, then finally... resigned, for good.

I've never felt so much relieved.  I didn't have to worry about the kids being hurt with the helper or anything bad while me and Boyet were away from home.  But the downside, the help I got left.  The first few months were really difficult.  Before, I was doing chores just for myself.  Now I'm doing chores for my kids.  Some people would think I have obsessive-compulsive personality disorder when they see how I hated dirt and clutter.  But any mother would act the same to even the tiniest spot on the floor or smallest food particle on the bedroom floor, wouldn't they? Anyway, my point is, I maintain cleanliness and orderliness for my children.  That's just it!

Day after day, I felt I needed to do a lot of things, important household chores, first before I could sit down in front of the computer for my Link Building job.  Super exhausting tasks that are so mechanical I'm afraid they won't end.  And so I made a list of all the small/great tasks I do that make me feel proud of myself once accomplished:

  1. Doing the laundry while neighbors are still asleep. I learned from a TV interview before that this widower who made sure to wash their clothes before the sun rises to give ample time for the water to drip.  I forced myself to remember this.
  2. Seeing the newly washed clothes hanging under the sun.  I so love it when the sun is shining and clothes are underneath to catch it's beam.  I don't feel complete when there's no clothes to dry on a warm sunny day.
  3. Smelling the amazing fragrance of fresh clothes while ironing.  Hmmm... this makes me so complete.
  4. Hanging fresh curtains.
  5. Cleaning the electric fan.
  6. Smelling the fresh linen on the bed
  7. Smelling that scent on the pillows after leaving them under the sun.
  8. Smelling my kid's armpit after playtime and finding out that it neither smelt sour nor anything.
  9. Attending the choir practice, on time. We live in Cavite.  We attend our church in Quezon City.  Our choir practice starts at 8:30am. :-)
  10. Dressing up my kids for school.  Smelling their freshness, looking at their neat uniform and shoes.
  11. Fixing my kid's lunch while hearing my daughter's story of how her classmates found her yesterday's lunch good.  Most of her classmates just buy at the school canteen, by the way, while others have biscuits and potato chips for break time.
  12. Successfully catching on camera Bea and Han's play time.
  13. Seeing perfect scores on my kids' exams.
  14. Play dress up with Bea.  It won't be complete without a perfect eye make up and hair-do.
  15. Play wrestling with Hans and hear his giggles. 
  16. Cook a simple dish then Hans says, "Ang sarap naman ng luto mo, mommy" 
  17. Work-out after finishing all chores for the day.
  18. Keeping the toilet floor dry
  19. Sipping a cup of rich, flavorful chocolate
  20. Spend alone time with God.
These are my top 20.  How about you, what simple things make you joyful

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