on sending greeting cards that speak our minds

It's almost December - and then just a few days more of sleeping and waking up, it's already Christmas! I've been meaning to get my very good friends some greeting cards but it seems like there aren't new ones at the store anymore that can really send my thoughts and wishes for them during this season. An idea sprouted after visiting a printing website and seeing how easy it is to design cards through that site. Husband suggested we make our own cards and have them customized and printed. This way, it would be possible for us to send the greeting cards that really speak our minds. Yes, it's definitely not yet too late to send and receive greeting cards for Christmas.

this meant a lot to her

This is a late update but I want to make sure I have documented most (if not all) of my little girl's activities and progress in school. A couple of weeks ago, my daughter couldn't wait to tell me that she received a token during the school's awarding of their Sciematics and Sportsfest activity.

photo grabbed from the school's Facebook page

Actually, I saw pictures of her in the school's Facebook page where she participated in the game of Snakes and Ladders with other kids in school. I didn't think she won first place but, seeing the glow and delight in as her eyes when she proudly showed her award to me, I knew that award meant so much to her. In fact, when I was on the phone checking on my dad in Medellin, she wanted to also have a word with him so she can proudly share about her latest achievement in school.

the winners

As parents, we really appreciate it that, even in simple activities like this, the school has helped boost our kid's confidence.

moving on after the calamity

After surviving from that great typhoon, the greatest challenge of people in affected communities is how to get back on their feet. While victims are still trying to re-build their homes, most of them rely on tents provided by the government. But did you know that, in some parts of the world, there are those that make use of off trailers as temporary shelters? It would be interesting to find out how this can be possibly done, especially with texas pride roll off trailers, or whatever will work for them. However, in our country, some of us would have to make do with only light materials which are not usually typhoon-proof. :-(

Quite sadly, a lot of those affected who are in remote areas have lost their energy to live especially when there is scarcity of food and relief goods hardly reach them on time. For those areas that were badly hit, being able to get back on their feet is not likely to happen anytime soon if they are not getting help from our government, private organizations, companies and individuals. Obviously, they do not just need relief goods to get by because they know that pretty soon this kind of help will go away. That's the reality. What they need is livelihood to sustain them and to help them carry on with their lives in the real sense of the word. What's more important for them now is to make their lives better a day at a time. I heard that the government is offering some sort of a program to teach carpentry skills to the typhoon victims. That is such a good move because they can use these skills to re-build or construct their homes. Aside from that, they can eventually get a job from these skills.


sad but thankful November

November didn't feel quite as special like it used to. In fact, it was more like a nightmare to me. I didn't even try to celebrate my birthday. I just let it pass like it's an ordinary day. I thought it is just not right to celebrate while there are a lot of people who have experienced life's difficulties and challenges because of that devastating typhoon Yolanda. I have thanked the Lord, though, for all the blessings that I have received from Him; although I believe I got more of those blessings than I deserve.

I was quite relieved to know that dad and family are okay. Dad's place has been one of those areas that have been hit really bad in Cebu. Somehow, I felt a little guilty that I wasn't able to convince him to evacuate. Although I have already warned him about that super typhoon, neither of us thought about how "super" it is until it becomes too late to do what is necessary. At the height of the typhoon, we were communicating to let me know that the wind is coming too strong and that water got into the house. He also added that he is lifting everything to God. Then there was no more time to elaborate what was happening because he said goodbye and said "I love you" a number of times. Wow, he really said it plenty of times (and he hasn't done that before) until the communication lines went off. Yours truly got paranoid after that because I couldn't get in touch with him for nearly 24 hours. Overnight, I had been thinking about their plight and then I woke up at midnight because of a weird dream about my late mom visiting the house and looking too sad. I prayed that nothing bad happened to any of my family. Thank God, they're okay. I just learned later that dad's cellphone battery got drained and he didn't get the chance to charge the battery because power lines were off.

If there is anything good that can be derived from experiencing a calamity, that would be the love and concern of family and friends. You can really feel their genuine concern and effort to help in every/any way they can. It has brought families closer and at the same time have caused a lot of helping hands to come together for a common cause. There is still life after the super typhoon after all. I just hope those extremely affected areas, like in Tacloban and Samar, can say the same thing.

Anyway, November isn't over yet. People in the US will be celebrating Thanksgiving. I only have words of gratitude to them for the HUGE help we have received from them and their country. Thank you, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.


been struck with calamities

I have almost been missing out updates on my blog but that's because our region/country have been struck with different calamities lately. Last month, we have experienced a high-magnitude earthquake and then lately, we have just survived super typhoon Yolanda. Today, I am just so glad that the storm has already passed; although I have yet to check on my dad back in Medellin for updates; although we have spoken earlier before the communication lines went down. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hope that they are all okay because their area is also one of those that are directly passed by the typhoon. I fully trust that the Lord has extended His mantle of protection to each and every one of them. It is quite depressing to know, though, that there are a lot of casualties in Tacloban, Leyte. I've watched the news and it saddened me even more. Many of us can't seem to understand why some have to lose their families this way but we'll just rest everything in God's hands.