i was just got curious of this love calculator i found while net surfing. me and my hub got 85%. i dont know what that means. is that an average level? whatever! anyway, i guess love can’t be calculated at all.
i just believe, love is destiny! you just can’t get away from it.

richard and i have known each other for almost 17 years. funny, when we actually 1st met, we were at the NBI (Nat’l. Bureau of Investigation) in Manila filing up a criminal case (Estafa) over someone who betrayed our mothers and other people with a large amount of money. that was 1993. Me and Richard really didn’t uttered a word. just plain glancing and ignoring each other. after a year, we saw each other again. this time at the Makati Regional Trial Court for our arraignment. I was with my bf that moment and Richard kidded us “how sweet. ants will bite you two”. that was it! i never heard from him again. i flew here in Milan that same year (1994) and i didn’t know what happened to him.
i had a son with my exbf, but my relationship with him had sadly ended. distance and communication barriers! we totally got lost contact. but i never blame anyone. that’s life. maybe it wasn’t really meant to be.
Richard came here by Feb. 1997 and inevitably we met again here in Milan. he was attached to someone back in the Phil. but we still had the luxury to be the best of friends: sharing thoughts, stories, almost everything! obviously he knew my past relationship so i didn’t have to explain about my son.
later on, her gf called and told him she can’t wait for him anymore and wants to get married as young as possible. so she broke up with him. he was hurt and we became closer than ever. going out, holding hands, hugging weren’t BIG deal for us. no monkey business. but before the year ended, he then uttered the word “LOVE”.
Wow! Amazingly, we were just in love. (giggles)
of course, not all love stories are perfect. we had our own trials in our relationship. at one point i gave him up. too much pressure and all, with the people around. he just fought for me and that’s what matters most. our love survived. by 1999 we decided to live-in together. we had great times! nobody ever believed that not even once we really “fight”. little arguments of “what to eat” were just normal, right? but big fights with shouting and harsh words? NOPE! i’m proud to say none ’til now. maybe he’s more patient than me. maybe i’m not the type who nags. maybe we just simply trust each other.
by 2001 i was surprised to find out i was pregnant with Jaki. it’s just unexpected. but, of course, we’re so happy about it. when we’ve gone home for a vacation in the Phil. we had never thought of any church or grand wedding. we didn’t have a lot of time too, to plan things out. so, we both decided to have a civil wed for the meantime. i wasn’t feeling good too coz i was pregnant. Jaki “tortured” me a lot until birth.
2009, i gave birth to a baby girl, named Zendra Kiara. i could not ask for more!
by november, we are on the 13th year of being together. lucky for us. a lot of relationships didn’t last that long nowadays. i guess that’s TRUE LOVE. i still feel nervous when he’s around and that’s one thing i love about us. we’ve been best friends. i guess understanding, communication, respect and passion were some of the ingredients in our relationship.
so here i am jotting our love story…where our destiny led us to.

Saturday in the Park

the weather’s becoming weird here (last friday it’s raining). i woke up at about 6:30am and turned on the tv (in mute mode). my hub will yell at me, “aga pa nyan” (it’s still early) if he hears the tv on. i’m used to watching morning news, especially the “meteo” (wheather forecast). it’s gonna be a sunny saturday. nice. after a quick clean up in the bathroom, i wrestle with the paddles in the kitchen πŸ™‚ and prepared soup for breakfast. after that, i started ironing clothes. the kids woke up around 8am. my hub set the table and the 4 of us ate quickly. hub got out about 10am for his work and me and the kids went out. it’s such a nice saturday.
we went first at Simply grocery store to buy “merenda” (snack). picked up some biscuits and a handy mineral water. all we got in the house were of 2 liters. i wont bring a big bottle out. on our way to the park, we stopped at a news stand and zendra pointed at a looney tunes surprise bag. she’s getting smart picking what she wants, and not knowing if her mother have enough money. hahaha.

jaki played along with the three kids who were there. it’s kind of a natural thing for them to come along well even they don’t know each other. quite an envy. if adults could have been like kids and just let go and let live..the world could be a better place. peaceful!
i opened the surprise bag and dyaraaaan! a yellow tambourine, and lots of looney tunes coloring books! 4.50euro justified. i dont complain. zendra hold the tambourine and never let it go, even while eating some biscuits or playing with the ball.

click and click– quick fotos kids!

zendra suddenly forgot the other stuffs in the bag when she saw the slide. i took off their jackets ‘coz it’s hot in the park. the sun is fully shining. i put zendra on the slides, and thank God she wasn’t scared. the first time i put her on slides, she cried so hard.

i let the kids play and had fun. it’s almost 1pm. dah? time flies so fast. i’m starving. “andiamo bambini” (let’s go kids).
Jaki: Mamma, ancora un po (Ma, some more minutes)
Zendra: Waaah, waaaaah (while im putting her jacket)
Me: Ok…some more minutes
Zendra: Waaaaaaah, waaah…(while i imprisoned her in her stroller)
she never stops crying…

almost 2pm. i called Jaki. he never complained though. we walk towards home just 30 meters away. Zendra’s still crying and she wants to push her stroller. arrrgh! jaki smiled when i allowed zendra push it. i told jaki, “forse domani saremo a casa” (maybe we will be home for tommorow). jaki laughed a lot and i laughed back. of course, if zendra will push the stroller back home with her tiny, slow steps…we’ll sure be at home by Sunday, right?
we arrived home and zendra is still crazily howling & crying. i set the bath tub for both kids and bathe them quickly. gave zendra her milk and prepared lunch for me and jaki. zendra slept.
i found peace in the house, finally.

Questions & Answers

my son Cj has a site with simple question and answer portion. i find it so helpful for me to know and understand more of him. unfortunately, he grew up without me. eventhough we talk, i still don’t know everything about him. thru this site, CJ insights, simple thoughts or opinions are simply revealed and shared.

here are some of the questions and his answers.

If you could have invented one thing, what would it have been?

i’m still thinking of it. haha. or else i won’t graduate. πŸ˜€

What kind of music can you just not stand to listen to?

nothing really. it’s called ‘least favorite’. that would be emocore. πŸ˜€

What was the last book you read?

Last full book was.. Black Mirror.

If you could be on the cover of any magazine, which would you choose?

RollingStone. πŸ˜€ or GuitarWorld. haha.

What website do you spend the most time on?

facebook. πŸ˜€

If you could be a star athlete in any sport, which sport would you pick?

darts. πŸ˜€

What’s one food you’ll never eat again?

i don’t know. tortang eggplant?

What was the best concert you went to?

bamboo concert. πŸ˜€

What was your favorite year?

this year keeps getting better and better. πŸ˜€

What’s your biggest phobia?

katsidraphobia? (roaches) haha.

What’s the best gift you’ve ever given?

a bouquet of flowers. a bracelet. and an unlimited amount of love. haha.

If you could be on one TV show which one would it be?


Zendra’s Thursday

i didn’t have much sleep last night because zendra kept on bugging me about her pink jacket. she wanted to wear it so bad. she knows now that if i put her a jacket she’ll be going out. “tong batang ito, hilig gumala” (this little one is fond of going out), i uttered. she kept on crying and it’s almost 12 midnight. “isuot mo na nga lang, pag nainitan yan aalisin din nyan” (just put it on, if she feels hot she’ll remove that), my husband told me. so i put the jacket on and she was satisfied. she literally slept with her winter jacket. i tried two times to get rid of it before she sweats, but she still fights for it. the heater is now killing us inside the room. we can’t turn it on or off because it’s centralized. it just turns on at 6am, and off at 11pm automatically. almost all the buildings in Milan are centralized. too seldom you’ll find a house with an individual heating system. so we always leave the window a bit open for some air. i’m still watching a film starring Jennifer Lopez (Angel Eyes). almost 1am. nothing else to watch on wednesday night. friday is a better day, we got CSI and 11th hour on prime time tv. it’s only about 2am that i get to remove the jacket from zendra without waking her up. . then i sleep.

i decided to bring along zendra with me when i drop my son, Jaki in school. it’s a sunny thursday and not so cold. so i dressed her up..pretty in pink! it’s still early, so i turned on the dvd and let her watch first teletubbies. she learned the “ciao-ciao” (hello) thing from Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Lala and Po: the 4 teletubbies character.
during my time, it’s just sesame street, flintstones and disney cartoons. still in black & white when i was at pre-school. (am i that old?) =)
i always set the dvd in italian language ‘coz the english is so very british, and i guess she’ll better be used also of italian language so she’ll never be silent when she goes to day care school. anyway, we talk tagalog at home. she understands both now.
Jaki on the other room is busy too with his tom and jerry cartoons. “mamma, ho dvd di questo, l’ho gia visto” (mamma, i have a dvd of this, i saw it already) and i kept wondering why kids will have to watch 50 times the cartoons and not getting annoyed. πŸ™‚
almost 8:15am. time to get ready kids…
we went out and headed for school. we saw my mom waiting for the bus, so zendra cried. she wants to come to her grandma. so i turned the stroller quickly before she cried out loud. after we brought Jaki in school, zendra and i headed up to the park. no one is still around ’cause it’s early. she just roam around.

she’s now learning how to step at the stairs…awww…i have to be so careful and doubly patient with her…“ang kulit na”

out of the park, there’s a flea market along the street. every thursday, vendors flock the street and it’s always economical to buy there..fruits, clothes, etc. you can buy anything! “ukay-ukay”. i didn’t peek there, too many people and i didn’t bring any money with me. so if i saw something nice, i will just be disappointed. better not pass there.
we crossed the street to sit down by the fountain nearby.

she kept on pointing at the waters and wanted to play around. “gustong maglangoy” (wants to swim) hahaha.
the fountain is just right in front of Sta. Lucia church (in the background left side). a lot of benches surround the fountain. most of time the elders sit there, chatting and reading newspapers.


a video of zendra walking around and robbing her snack under her stroller.
that’s almost half of zendra’s thursday. when we got home, we ate lunch and finally, she has fallen asleep.
time for her mom to turn on the pc… =)

missing the cows

i just miss these cows, so i want to look back.

Europe in 1998, cow parade has evolved to become the world’s largest public art event. This one-of-a-kind artistic spectacle has stampeded across the globe, capturing the hearts and imagination of artists, and the public alike, wherever the cows have grazed.
It was an idea of a famous Swiss sculptor Pascal Knapp. Since 1998, cow parade has been on the scene in 40 cities (New York, Chicago, Sidney, London, Paris, etc..) last 2007, Milan is part again of this art event. April 14 marked the greatinauguration of this open air “cow show”. Life-sized cows creatively designed were positioned all over Milan–city proper and parks, and endured until June 17, 2007. In the final event, the cows were bidded (conducted by Sotheby’s) & held on Trienalle in Viale Alemagna, Milano. The money from the ‘selling of the cows’ were given to the ONLUS CHAMPIONS FOR THE CHILDREN.
This foundation was pioneered by a great football Milan A.C. player –Clarence Seedorf– together with some other italian football players, to help the children of the third world.
it’s been almost 3 years and all i ever see now areminiatures of these exhibited cows displayed in the office where i work.

i am glad me and my son Jaki had pictureswith the cows.
(“,) Mooooooh!

my living doll

i did’nt grow up with many dolls when i was small. as far as i can recall i have this small doll that had one trick: closing and opening her eyes, but at least it’s a doll which i can dress up. my mom used to make dresses for my doll and i enjoyed playing it. barbie doll isn’t existing i guess those times. but if it does exist, we can’t simply afford it.
since high school i’ve been dreaming about my future baby/babies. i always wanted to have a baby girl. i would dress her up like a princess, i thought. a living doll! after my two boys, i never thought God will still give me a daughter. my 2nd son is almost 7 years old and my possibility is 50-50. i’m 38! unexpectedly and surprisingly, a baby girl came! wow! the doctors might want to dish me up everytime i have my ultrasound because i always ask them if it’s really a “girl”. i’m so excited.
i named her Zendra Kiara. now she’s almost 15 months and eversince she was born, i was dressing her up morning, noon and evening. not to mention capturing all her moments…”click, click, click”…“yan na yata ang batang merong pinakamaraming picture sa mundo” (i guess she’s got the most numbered of pictures in the world), my hub joked.

(sforzesco castle)
(quarto oggiaro park)
(dressed for carnival festival)

(with her anne geddes doll)
(near our balcony)

(knocking at rooms)
(@ nonna esther’s house)
(going out)

(first time she walked)

(tambourine girl)
someday, she’ll gonna thank me for these pictures, like i thanked my mom.

Jaki in School

jaki is in grade three now. seems just yesterday that he went to pre-school. his school is just a block away from our house, so we walk about five minutes every morning.
parents were called up in school for a meeting. among the agendas were the signing of the “pagella” (report card) for the first grading period. as far as i can recall, almost 2 or 3 times a year when parents are required to attend meetings or one-on-one talk with the teachers. except if you want to talk more with the teachers, you just need to ask an appointment.

first the teacher talked about the “scuola natura”. it practically means the kids are going out of town (a bit far) for 5 days with their teachers. they will be at Pietro Ligure, more or less 2 to 2.5 hours by bus from Milan. they will stay at a camp site and explore the nature, museums and other educational places. parents are not allowed, so, as expected… the parents are already in agony asking endless questions about the trip and all. it’s not compulsory anyway. for me it’s not a problem if i send Jaki away. but he is the problem. he doesn’t wanna go. he said, “mamma, non vuole dormire in un altra casa. non ciriesco. puoi Γ¨ lontano, voglio stare con kiara” (mamma, i dont want to sleep in another house. i can’t. it’s far and i want to stay with kiara).
i would never insist him going if he’s not ready yet to be away from us for 5 days. so i put an X sign to the “not authorized to come” and sign the paper. maybe he’ll be ready next year.

the grades here were 1 – 10, not percentage
Subjects —————————– Grades
Italiano (italian) 7
Inglese (english) 7
Storia (history) 8
Geografia (geography) 7
Matematica (mathematics) 7
Scienze (science) 7
Technologia & Informatica
(Technology & Info) 8
Musica (music) 8
Arte & Immagine (arts &
images) 8
Scienze Motori & Sportive
(physical education) 7
Religione (religion) 7

Guidizio Sintetico – Evaluation
in questo primo quadrimestre Cevrich ha gradualmente maturato piu interesse per l’apprendimento e per l’esperienza scolastica. Con i compagni e gli insegnantoi mantiene rapporti positivi e corretti. durante le lezioni tede qualche volta a chiacchierare dimostrando di non aver completamente maturato un adeguato rispetto per le regole della vita in classe.
in this first grading period, cevrich has matured gradually. he has a good rapport with his teachers and classmates. during lessons, he tends to talk sometimes, which shows that he is still not completely mature with respect to classroom rules.
well, i always tell him to pay attention to the teacher during lessons because he would not be able to understand if he don’t listen well. he said, “mamma, mi sempre chiama riccardo, come faccio?” (mamma, riccardo always calls me, what will i do?”). i told him, “non rispondere quando c’Γ¨ la lezione, altrimenti ti disturba anche i tuoi compagni di classe” (don’t reply to him during lessons, otherwise, you will disturb also your classmates)
everytime i bring him to school i always remind him, “non chiacchierare” (don’t talk too much).
i remember when he was 2 years old, he still don’t talk. i said to myself, what’s wrong with him? but when he starts talking, i can’t stop him anymore. nauubusan ako ng italiano, hahaha. (i’m lost for words sometimes in italian). he got difficulties in speaking tagalog language. he does understand but he cant speak up, even if we talk tagalog at home. maybe because he grew up here and everything he hears is italian. he’s afraid if he speaks tagalog, he’ll utter the wrong word. i can’t just force him. at least he knows english.

Padova, Italy

Padova, or Padua claims to be the oldest city in northern Italy. According to a tradition dated at least to Virgil’s Aeneid, and rediscovered by the medieval commune, it was founded in 1183 BC by the Trojan prince Antenor, who was supposed to have led the people of Eneti or Veneti from Paphlagonia to Italy. The city exhumed a large stone sarcophagus in the year 1274 and declared these to represent Antenor’s relics.
The Cathedral of Padua

The Basilica of St. Giustina, facing the great piazza of Prato della Valle.
In the 15th century, it became one of the most important monasteries in the area, until it was suppressed by Napoleon in 1810. In 1919 it was reopened. The tombs of several saints are housed in the interior, including those of Justine, St. Prosdocimus, St. Maximus, St. Urius, St. Felicita, St. Julianus, as well as relics of the Apostle St. Matthias and the Evangelist St. Luke. This is home to some art, including the Martyrdom of St. Justine by Paolo Veronese. The complex was founded in the 5th century on the tomb of the namesake saint, Justine of Padua.

The Basilica di Saint Anthony of padua
The most famous of the Paduan churches is the Basilica di Sant’Antonio da Padova, locally simply known as “Il Santo”. The bones of the saint rest in a chapel richly ornamented with carved marbles, the work of various artists, among them Sansovino and Falconetto. The basilica was begun about the year 1230 and completed in the following century. Tradition says that the building was designed by Nicola Pisano. It is covered by seven cupolas, two of them pyramidal.

this is the second time i went to padova and as far as i can recall, not much have changed. it’s still beautiful, especially the piazza dell prato, it’s still breathtaking! when we toured, it wa Sunday, so there is a long flea market around the plaza. yet, we didn’t have much time to roam around the market, we’re busy capturing the sights, visiting the churches, buying souvenirs and all.

piazza di prato della valle
One of the best known symbols of Padua is the Prato della Valle (PrΓ  deΕ‚a VaΕ‚e in Venetian), a 90,000 mΒ² elliptical square. It is the largest square in Italy, and one of the largest in Europe. The square today is a monumental space of extraordinary visual impact, with a green island at the center, l’Isola Memmia, surrounded by a small canal bordered by two rings of statues. the centre is a wide garden surrounded by a ditch, which is lined by 78 statues portraying famous citizens. It was created by Andrea Memmo in the late eighteenth-century.

Prato della Valle has, from its very beginning, taken its place in the hearts of Padovans who frequently refer to it simply as Il Prato. At various times it was also known as valley without grass because the number of trees prevented much grass from growing there. Today, however, it is completely covered with grass, and many small trees.
During the 1990s, the “Prato” went through a period of degradation and neglect, but today it has been restored to its original splendor through reclamation projects and the concern and involvement of the citizens of Padova. During the summer, the square is animated by large numbers of visitors who skate, stroll or study while tanning themselves in the sun. Summer evenings are marked by the presence of teenagers and young adults who chat until the early hours of the morning.
For several years, Prato della Valle has been the seat of the Padovan section of the Festivalbar, and recently it has even played host to skating competitions, thanks to the wide asphalted ring which surrounds the square.
Every New Year’s Day (Capodanno), and during the Feast of the Annunciation in August (Ferragosto), parties with music and fireworks take place in the Prato.

There are 78 statues sorrounding the canal of the piazza. but according to the original design, it should have been 88 statutes.
at the center of the plaza

rainy monday

another monday again. the wheather forecast was right, it will rain today. we got sunshine yesterday…the wheather’s continue changing here each day. 2 more weeks and it will be spring. i hope by march the rain will diminish.
my son is still sleeping, so i called him up…“svegliati jaki” (wake up), “you’ll be late for school”. zendra is still sleeping. it’s 7am. hub went to the kitchen and fried some hotdogs for breakfast. he went off to work at about 8am.
jaki and i got out of the house at 8:17am and left Zendra to my brother-in-law in the house.
the bell is already ringing when we arrived at jaki’s school. so he kissed me up quickly.
back to the house, there are two peruvian guys who are installing a surveillance camera. it’s about time they put a cam. the buildings’ basement were robbed last year and we lost some of our things down there. few days ago, i saw bottle garbages near the gate. what the…? what was that person thinking? the bin for bottles is just 10-step walk out of the building. why would he/she left it in front of our gate? but, no cams yet. we can’t point the suspect.
i peeked at our mail box and there’s a letter for me, from ASL (health department). info’s of vaccinations and stuffs. seeing the porter, i asked her if i can post the “avviso” (notice) for all the “condomini” (all the people living in the building). we have an appointment on wednesday for hydraulics, so the main switch for water supply will be closed from 9:00-11:00. we got leaks in the bathroom for quite sometime. i showed the porter my note and she said, make it bigger. so i went up, re-print the notice, in bolder and bigger fonts.
it says: Avviso Importante
Chiusura dell’acqua per lavoro, 24 febbraio, mercoledi, 9:00-11:00
Scusate per il disagio, grazie
(translation: important notice: closing of water for a job, 24 february, wednesday, excuse us for some inconveniences, thanks)
my daughter is still sleeping. i remember the bags and packs i still need to put in order. i was busy last saturday for carnevale and, sunday for making/editing invitation for baptismal and birthday parties. of course i’ll be paid..small business. it’s global crisis, no more “thank you’s” hahaha. i’m talking of 100 copies, so i’m crazy if i don’t ask for a cash, right?
so we got a surprise package from New Jersey, USA (my hub’s cousin). these are for my daughter zendra.
last saturday, hub went to decathlon (sport store) and bought us surprises, yey! i got a black nike sweat shirt, adidas for jaki and a pink shoes for zendra. hub got his new spring jacket (again). i would say he got thrice the number of jackets compared to mine.
yesterday my friend arrived from the philippines and i got some packs from my sister-in-law, Bheng. she sent shoes for zendra and some vitamins for me. there are 6 bottles, but i gave my brother 2 and my mom, 2. of course, dvd films! yey! got 17 english films! i might have a movie marathon this weekend.
i seldom go to the theaters here because they all dubbed the new english films to italian. although, honestly i can understand more of italian now than slang english, i still prefer the original film language. i just need to put subtitles, ‘coz im having a difficulty now with vocal english comprehension. it’s not easy when all you’re hearing here is italian. you tend not to practice speaking english. thru writing it’s much easier. speaking is another story.
kiara don’t want to remove the pink shoes anymore…
it’s almost 2pm and i gave zendra some of her snacks: banana yogurt for kids, albicocca juice and a bread. she’s really a “mangione” (great eater). she never rejects any food.
after eating she tried her acrobatics skill…standing up on her toy bag carrying her balloon. i guess she’ll be in circus one day, hahaha.
still raining…
i can’t open up some Fb applications. argh!
anyway, i’m busier these days at blogger site.
gotta think about my lunch. i’m starving.

JS Promenade

when you’re in high school, you would never want to miss the JS Prom. during my time (oh ow…am i counting my years?)…late ’80’s, we got these wonderful ballroom dances: waltz, tango, cotillion, etc…we were dressed with wonderful semi-gowns at junior year and all white during senior year. there’s a live band playing.

now it’s my son CJ’s time for JS. the “barong tagalogs” are now colorful and the ballroom dances were accompanied by modern tunes. the ladies wear colorful dresses. the JS tradition was somehow improvised thru the years.

he chose the red colored barong chinese styled. handsome! it’s in the genes…i’m the mother, believe it! hahaha.
matching dress colors as pair
group picture. look at those gentleboys…all good looking.
ready to go…
on stage. the gymnasium is a blast. i want to congratulate one of my schoolmates who’s a busy mom-organizer of the Prom.
i wonder what are they doing here?
another pose

with his cousin Raya…if choosing a partner was allowed, i guess my son will pick her up..the real scene stealer…=)