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Showing posts from July, 2012

When something comes naturally...

Limitations are not bad. We have to embrace our limitations because only then can we know what our potentials are. For the past 23 years, I’ve been a mother. And in over 2 decades, like most mothers, I instill the “Yes, you can!” thinking to my children. However,  we all learn that there are things we excel in and there are things we don’t do well – no matter how much hard work we put into it. The key to a happy life is to be able to acknowledge such limitations - to know our strengths as well as our weaknesses. I have four children and they all have their own talents, skills, abilities – and passion. It is not fair to think that they can all do the same thing at the same level. No matter how much focus and reinforcements we provide in encouraging our children, we have to be ready to accept that there are some things that are just beyond their abilities. Don’t you notice when you do something natural, every task seems effortless? You see, we are blessed with ab

Schlepping the kids to the beach, a day at Spring Lake, NJ

Summer means spending some time at the beach. Summer time at the beach requires major schlepping! For those of you who don’t know what schlepping means: Schlep derived from the Yiddish word, “shlepn” . It means to drag, haul, carry or make a tedious journey.

A Birthday Treat at Stowe Flake Resort and Spa

"Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are." ~ Chinese Proverb. Chill out. Wind down. Relax. These are the goals we set for this week's vacation in Vermont. I turned 48 last week, and as a gift, my husband took me to Stowe Flake Mountain Resort and Spa in Stowe, Vermont. I had an hour of the Lemon and Chamomile Exfoliation treatment and massage. Needless to say, I came out soft and renewed.

Flowers in the Philippines, Mom’s simple pleasures captured with my iPhone via instagram

It’s more fun in the Philippines – a catch phrase that anyone who has been in the  Philippines  can understand. It’s the people who make every visit memorable. The Lonely Planet guidebook calls the Filipinos “among the most easy going and ebullient people anywhere.” My last visit to the Philippines wasn’t scheduled as a fun visit. ( I went to say farewell to my Lola Inay , my grandma). Every time I visit, I take time to bring Mom to her little paradise near the equator – the Manila Seedling. I still remember how excited Mom was when we took her to the Botanical Garden in New York . But anywhere there’s a plant blooming, it can be on a sidewalk or in a little pot, Mom feels like she’s in paradise. My brothers and I can see it her eyes and smile. So earlier this month, I took Mom and Dad to Manila Seedling in Quezon City. 

Amma (Mata Amritanandamayi) is in New York, and I was there!

  Amma   (Mata Amritanadamayi) is known through out the world as the “living saint” because of her selfless love and compassion toward all beings. In reading about Amma (,  one thing that got me interested is her philosophy,  “Where there is true love, everything is effortless.” Amma has helped (embraced and comforted) more than 33 million people. Amma was from South India . Even at a very young age, Amma has devoted her time in meditation and helping those who are in need.   Being deeply affected by the profound suffering that surrounded her, Amma’s conviction went beyond the basic (Hinduism) teaching that “the suffering of the individual is due to his or her own karma — the results of actions performed in the past.” Amma believed that each of us has a responsibility to lend a helping hand to those less fortunate. “If it is one man’s karma to suffer, isn’t it our dharma (duty) to help ease his suffering and pain?” The universe introduced

Pole dancing, Tahiti Dance Classes, Flying Trapeze and Getting a Hug from a living saint

Pole dancing, Tahiti Dance classes, flying trapeze and getting a hug from a hugging saint are just a few fun, interesting and fulfilling things to do in New York this week! A few months ago, my friends and I tried NY Pole dancing . We tried the Climb and Spin class, a beginner's pre-requisite to any other classes. It really was a great exercise. It's not easy. It required concentration and remembering a dance routine. We learned a few dance techniques while building strength, control and muscle memory. Last November, my friend and I ventured on an adventure that we both didn't think we could do: We conquered our fears and succeeded in spending the morning at New York Flying Trapeze . We did it indoors  during the Fall, but I bet it is more exciting outdoors at South Street Seaport. This summer, there are a few Ori Tahiti Dance classes in Central Park. Tonight alone, July 9th, from 6:30-8:30pm, classes will be held at Central Park, Columbus Circ

Didn't you get the memo? I'm not a baby anymore.

Four kids: 23, 21, 16 and 11. My  three older ones are mostly away from home - either at work, college or at a summer jazz camp.  Our home is pretty close to being an empty nest. However, my youngest will always be my baby. In fact, I was away for three weeks, and when I got back, my youngest seemed like he grew.  I must have missed him so much because I haven't stopped taking his pictures with my iPhone. I just loved capturing his every emotion. Anyway, earlier this week, he approached hubby and I. He wanted to start saving money. My kids don't get any allowance - they never did. And they always have chores to do. I tell them that as family, we all have to chip in -- help a little to make it easier for every one. Aside from doing chores every week, my children managed to find means of making money: My third child has been teaching piano since he was 10, and the two older ones always worked in various places - restaurants, fast food, bakery, retail, and website

Brothers and Sisters

I'm blessed with not 1, not 2, but 5 brothers - all with different personalities.  They are my low maintenance best buds and soul mates.  And being the third of six children gave me the benefits of having older and younger brothers. "You don't chose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them." ~ Desmond Tutu. Filipinos prefix their siblings' names with  " Kuya"  for older brother and " Ate"  for older sister.    My brothers and I are protective of one another.  One of our missions in life is that we make sure that all of us are happy -- in their career, business, family and relationships.  We support each other's dreams, criticize if needed, and provide plenty of positive reinforcements! I remember growing up and my brothers all had comments as far as clothing and make-ups were concerned.  They made sure that I dressed up appropriately.  And whenever I experimented on putting on eye make-up, t