Thought Bubbles...

musings, rantings, and what-have-you, about my own small part of the world, and my 'sometimes' not so-ordinary life...something to read and reflect on, and which hopefully will bring a smile to your face... :)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Gusto mo ba ng libreng Starbucks Coffee? I-repost lang ito.

Bakit may pa-kontest? Wala lang, gusto kong magpa-kontest. May nagbigay ng Starbucks Coffee Gift Certificate sa akin. Naubos ko na yung dating pinapakontest ko na ticket sa Comedy Bar kaya ito naman.


1. I-repost ang buong blog na ito (yep, copy and paste) sa kahit anong blog site na trip mo.

Halimbawa: Friendster blog, Multiply blog, Facebook Notes, Blogspot, WordPress, MySpace, self-hosted sites.

2. Kailangang ilagay ang subject na:

Gusto mo ba ng libreng Starbucks Coffee? I-repost lang ito.

Kapag hindi ganyan ang subject, hindi valid ang entry. Maliwanag?

3. Pumunta sa: at ilagay ang inyong link. Isang valid link ay isang koment.

4. I-ra-raffle ang Starbucks Coffee Gift Certificate sa Oct. 3, 2009.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


With the assumption of President Obama of the presidency of the United States of America, former President George “Dubya” Bush is leaving a “legacy” of bumbling speeches and incoherent mumblings, officially known as "Bushisms".

Jay Leno and other comedians had a field day with Bush precisely because of this… He will be missed, hehe…Here are some of the most memorable gaffes of Dubya for our entertainment:

• “I know the human being and fish can coexist peacefully.” - September 2000, explaining his energy policies at an event in Michigan.

• “Rarely is the question asked, is our children learning?” - January 2000, during a campaign event in South Carolina.

• ”They misunderestimated the compassion of our country. I think they misunderestimated the will and determination of the commander in chief, too.” - Sept. 26, 2001, in Langley, Virginia. Bush was referring to the terrorists who carried out the Sept. 11 attacks.

• “There’s no doubt in my mind, not one doubt in my mind, that we will fail.” - Oct. 4, 2001, in Washington. Bush was remarking on a back-to-work plan after the terrorist attacks.

• “It would be a mistake for the United States Senate to allow any kind of human cloning to come out of that chamber.” - April 10, 2002, at the White House, as Bush urged Senate passage of a broad ban on cloning.

• “I want to thank the dozens of welfare-to-work stories, the actual examples of people who made the firm and solemn commitment to work hard to embetter themselves.” - April 18, 2002, at the White House.

• “There’s an old saying in Tennessee - I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee - that says, fool me once, shame on - shame on you. Fool me - you can’t get fooled again.” - Sept. 17, 2002, in Nashville, Tennessee.

• “Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.” - Aug. 5, 2004, at the signing ceremony for a defense spending bill.

• “Too many good docs are getting out of business. Too many OB/GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.” - Sept. 6, 2004, at a rally in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.

• “Our most abundant energy source is coal. We have enough coal to last for 250 years, yet coal also prevents an environmental challenge.” - April 20, 2005, in Washington.

• “We look forward to hearing your vision, so we can more better do our job.” - Sept. 20, 2005, in Gulfport, Mississippi.

• “I can’t wait to join you in the joy of welcoming neighbors back into neighborhoods, and small businesses up and running, and cutting those ribbons that somebody is creating new jobs.” - Sept. 5, 2005, when Bush met with residents of Poplarville, Mississippi, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

• “It was not always a given that the United States and America would have a close relationship. After all, 60 years we were at war 60 years ago we were at war.” - June 29, 2006, at the White House, where Bush met with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

• “Make no mistake about it, I understand how tough it is, sir. I talk to families who die.” - Dec. 7, 2006, in a joint appearance with British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

• “These are big achievements for this country, and the people of Bulgaria ought to be proud of the achievements that they have achieved.” - June 11, 2007, in Sofia, Bulgaria.

• “Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for your introduction. Thank you for being such a fine host for the OPEC summit.” - September 2007, in Sydney, Australia, where Bush was attending an APEC summit.

• “Thank you, Your Holiness. Awesome speech.” April 16, 2008, at a ceremony welcoming Pope Benedict XVI to the White House.

• “The fact that they purchased the machine meant somebody had to make the machine. And when somebody makes a machine, it means there’s jobs at the machine-making place.” - May 27, 2008, in Mesa, Arizona.

• “And they have no disregard for human life.” - July 15, 2008, at the White House. Bush was referring to enemy fighters in Afghanistan.

• “I remember meeting a mother of a child who was abducted by the North Koreans right here in the Oval Office.” - June 26, 2008, during a Rose Garden news briefing.

• “Throughout our history, the words of the Declaration have inspired immigrants from around the world to set sail to our shores. These immigrants have helped transform 13 small colonies into a great and growing nation of more than 300 people.” - July 4, 2008 in Virginia.

• “The people in Louisiana must know that all across our country there’s a lot of prayer - prayer for those whose lives have been turned upside down. And I’m one of them. It’s good to come down here.” - Sept. 3, 2008, at an emergency operations center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, after Hurricane Gustav hit the Gulf Coast.

• “This thaw - took a while to thaw, it’s going to take a while to unthaw.” Oct. 20, 2008, in Alexandria, Louisiana, as he discussed the economy and frozen credit markets.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Missionaries of Charity Home of Joy (08 November 2008)

Last Saturday (November 8) was a full day for us. Earlier that day, the kids had their judo/jiu-jitsu class at the Kamphuis Makati gym. After class and a hearty lunch at KFC, we drove to Tayuman in Tondo, Manila.

Our destination? An orphanage called the Missionaries of Charity Home of Joy for the Sick Children. Missionaries of Charity is the order of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

The kids and I went there on the invitation of Christine, a fellow BNT member, who instead of spending for her birthday party, opted to use the money to donate grocery items to said orphanage.
The Home of Joy caters to special children, those with Down's syndrome, hydrocephalous, and the like. It was the first time for us to visit an orphanage. Normally, we just donate whatever items, and have it dropped off to charitable institutions or foundations. This was a first for us, and it was truly an eye-opener.

Patrick was a little wary at first, and nervously laughing. When he heard kids from inside the home calling to us, he admitted that he was afraid (though he only showed it through his nervous laugh). But as soon as we went in, and they saw their new playmates, Paolo and Patrick took out bubble blowers and toy harmonicas to give away, and immediately they felt at ease. Just a few minutes in the home, and they were all playing happily together.

Paolo and Patrick were enjoying themselves, and they were acting like very good "kuyas" (older brothers). I was so proud to see the compassion they had for these kids. There were also a lot of babies, and i stayed with them, talking to them, caressing their backs and arms, and they responded. later on, paolo stayed with the babies as well, who he found so cute. Patrick, on the other hand, spent more time playing with the kids who were all a little younger or just about his age. It was really a nice experience, but also heartbreaking. One baby i carried (3 years old or younger) was smiling and laughing but when i tried putting her back down into her crib, she started acting up. Crying, holding on to my arms, and when i finally got her lying down on her bed, she started hitting her head on the crib! i sort of panicked and one of the helpers came to my rescue (so to speak), and admonished the little girl, for acting out. I felt so sorry for these kids. They probably are just longing for human touch, so they don't want to be placed back on their beds. Heartbreaking.

The Sisters of Charity were very accommodating, and they really made us feel welcome. We did promise that we'd come back sometime soon. Just need to save up some more, to donate grocery items as we were told that during low-charity seasons, the kids usually have less to eat. No sweets, as they have very little budget or none at all, for dental care. Almost all of the kids have rotten teeth, and some, no teeth at all.

The wards follow a meal time schedule. Early breakfast, lunch at 10 am, snack at 2, dinner at 4PM, then lights out by 7PM. The reason? To save on electricity. The Missionaries of Charity Home of Joy house 80 abandoned kids, with 12 helpers and nuns. Imagine that! They also take in kids who are sick, but not abandoned. Such as kids who come from poor families, and are suffering from primary complex. The poor families leave their kids with the nuns, who then care for them, and provide them food and medicine. Then weekly, the parents visit them. After 6 months and the kids are cured, that's when the parents take their kids back home with them.

The nuns were so nice to us. They gave us prayer books and 'stampitas' of Blessed Mother Teresa. They invited us to come back to visit them again, and also to visit their other "home" across the street. This one is a home for adults, and abandoned "lolos" and "lolas".

The experience was really an eye-opener for all of us, and i hope it instills in the kids the value of charity, and compassion. Already, they know how to share and to give, but this time, they also learn that gifts don't need to be money or food, as it can also be their time. Like with Kuya Paolo, who just sat with each of the babies, held their hands, played peekaboo with them, and even carried them in his arms. Patrick also played with the kids, and saw how happy they were even when we just gave them the littlest of toys. Kakatuwa yung reaction nung kids. we also taught paolo and patrick to caress the babies, touch their arms, and heads, and whisper to them, "God loves you. God bless you. we love you"... and it just felt so good to be able to spend even just one afternoon with them.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

12 simple ways to supercharge your brain

I saw this post on yahoo, and thought this would be a great article to share. This is for everyone, young and old, but would definitely be helpful for people growing more forgetful. You know who you are. hehehe... ;-> (okay, me included). :)


12 simple ways to supercharge your brain

by Jay @ Dumb Little Man, on Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:00am PDT

Have you ever felt exasperated when you bumped into someone at the store but absolutely couldn't remember their name? Sure, it happens to all of us.

Despite being the strongest computer on the planet, our brains do lapse. It's hard to blame them really. As humans, we spend much of or existence stuffing our brains with stuff.

No matter how powerful our brains are, they need recuperation time to be kept in shape. Think of it as a tune up for your brain. Skipping brain maintenance is as silly as the person wandering the parking garage because they forgot where they parked. Is that you? Are you that person? If so, fear not; we are all that person at some point.

Now I am not a brain surgeon and I am not going to suggest you do anything surgical or dangerous. I am however an astute student of human behavior so I always look for simple ways to super charge my brain.

Here are some things you can begin doing as soon as today to begin the great brain tune up:

Eat Almonds
Almond is believed to improve memory. If a combination of almond oil and milk is taken together before going to bed or after getting up at morning, it strengthens our memory power. Almond milk is prepared by crushing the almonds without the outer cover and adding water and sugar to it.

Drink Apple Juice
Research from the University of Massachusetts Lowell (UML) indicates that apple juice increases the production of the essential neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the brain, resulting in an increased memory power.

Sleep well
Research indicates that the long-term memory is consolidated during sleep by replaying the images of the experiences of the day. These repeated playbacks program the subconscious mind to store these images and other related information.

Enjoy simple Pleasures
Stress drains our brainpower. A stress-ridden mind consumes much of our memory resources to leave us with a feeble mind. Make a habit to engage yourself in few simple pleasures everyday to dissolve stress from your mind. Some of these simple pleasures are good for your mind, body and soul.

  • Enjoy music you love
  • Play with your children
  • Appreciate others
  • Run few miles a day, bike or swim
  • Start a blog
  • Take a yoga class or Total Wellness routine

Exercise your mind
Just as physical exercise is essential for a strong body, mental exercise is equally essential for a sharp and agile mind. Have you noticed that children have far superior brainpower than an adult does? Children have playful minds. A playful mind exhibits superior memory power. Engage in some of the activities that require your mind to remain active and playful.

  • Play scrabble or crossword puzzle
  • Volunteer
  • Interact with others
  • Start a new hobby such as blogging, reading, painting, bird watching
  • Learn new skill or a foreign language

Practice Yoga or Meditation
Yoga or Meditation relives stress. Stress is a known memory buster. With less stress, lower blood pressure, slower respiration, slower metabolism, and released muscle tension follows. All of these factors contribute significantly towards increases in our brainpower.

Reduce Sugar intake
Sugar is a non-food. It’s a form of carbohydrate that offers illusionary energy, only to cause a downhill slump once the initial burst has been worn off. Excess intake of sugar results in neurotic symptoms. Excess sugar is known to cause claustrophobia, memory loss and other neurotic disorders. Eat food without adding sugar. Stay away from sweet drinks or excess consumption of caffeine with sugar.

Eat whole wheat
The whole wheat germs contain lecithin. Lecithin helps ease the problem of the hardening of the arteries, which often impairs brain functioning.

Eat a light meal at night
A heavy meal at night causes tossing and turning and a prolonged emotional stress while at sleep. It’s wise to eat heavy meal during the day when our body is in motion to consume the heavy in-take. Eating a light meal with some fruits allows us to sleep well. A good night sleep strengthens our brainpower.

Develop imagination
Greeks mastered the principle of imagination and association to memorize everything. This technique requires one to develop a vivid and colorful imagination that can be linked to a known object. If you involve all your senses - touching, feeling, smelling, hearing and seeing in the imagination process, you can remember greater details of the event.

Control your temper
Bleached food, excess of starch or excess of white bread can lead to nerve grating effect. This results in a violent and some time depressive behavior. Eat fresh vegetables. Drink lots of water and meditate or practice yoga to relieve these toxic emotions of temper and stressful mood swings.

Take Vitamin B-complex
Vitamin B-complex strengthens memory power. Eat food and vegetables high in Vitamin B-complex. Stay away from the starch food or white bread, which depletes the Vitamin B-complex necessary for a healthy mind.

I don't believe these are that tough. If you find yourself increasing stumped, give a couple of these a try.

Written by Shilpan Patel of Success Soul and cross-posted from Dumb Little Man, a web site that provides tips for life that will save you money, increase your productivity, or simply keep you sane.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Photo albums update

If you're wondering why there's a sudden surge of posting here at multiply, of not-so-new pics from me, let me explain why.
First off, it's a holiday and the perfect time (the only time i have) to update my blog, multiply account, etc.
Second, i realize that there are a gazillion photos stored in my camera phone and which are eating up my phone's memory. Time to delete!
So there.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Retraction of previous post

After I posted the "Farewell letter from a Genius" on my multiply blog, a friend informed me that it was a hoax. I promptly googled it, and this is what I found..

Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Final Farewell

During the summer of 1999 Gabriel Garcia Marquez, winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize for Literature and author of such classics as One Hundred Years of Solitude, was treated for lymphatic cancer. In the wake of that, there were persistent rumors about his failing health.

On May 29, 2000 these rumors appeared to be confirmed when a poem that was signed with his name appeared in the Peruvian daily La Republica. The poem was titled "La Marioneta" or "The Puppet," and it was reportedly a farewell poem that Garcia Marquez had written and sent out to his closest friends on account of his worsening condition.

The text of the poem, as well as the news of Garcia Marquez's worsening condition, quickly spread to other newspapers. On May 30 Mexico City dailies reproduced it. La Cronica ran a headline that read "Gabriel Garcia Marquez sings a song to life," and published the poem superimposed on a photo of the novelist on its front page. The poem was also read on many radio stations and spread quickly throughout the world via the internet.

The poem itself was highly sentimental and full of cliches that one would not have normally expected from the great writer. For instance, the poem declared at one point the author's desire to "live in love with love." (the entire text of the poem, translated into English, is reproduced below).

Nevertheless, many who read it were deeply moved by what they took to be the dying author's final message. For instance, one friend of Garcia Marquez, the Indian filmmaker Mrinal Sen, told the Hindustan Times that upon reading the poem he was flooded with memories from his 20 years of acquaintance with the author.

However, it soon became clear that Garcia Marquez's condition had not worsened recently, and he had not written the poem credited to him.

The poem turned out to be the work of an obscure Mexican ventriloquist named Johnny Welch. Welch had written the poem for his puppet sidekick "Mofles," but somehow his name had been replaced by the name of the Nobel Prize winning author.

Welch admitted that he was not a great writer, but told Mexico's InfoRed radio station that he was nevertheless "feeling the disappointment of someone who has written something and is not getting credit."

Garcia Marquez did not comment publicly on the poem. However, the week that the poem was published, a legitimate piece by him did appear in print. It was an essay on the Cuban castaway Elian Gonzales titled "Shipwreck on Dry Land."

References/Further Reading:
 "'Farewell poem' Fools Readers," Los Angeles Times, June 01, 2000.
 Ashis Chakrabarti, "Marquez's latest poem is news of death foretold," Hindustan Times, August 17, 2000.

Text copyright © 2002 Alex Boese


The Puppet

If for a moment God would forget that I am a rag doll and give me a scrap of life, possibly I would not say everything that I think, but I would definitely think everything that I say.

I would value things not for how much they are worth but rather for what they mean.

I would sleep little, dream more. I know that for each minute that we close our eyes we lose sixty seconds of light.

I would walk when the others loiter; I would awaken when the others sleep.

I would listen when the others speak, and how I would enjoy a good chocolate ice cream.

If God would bestow on me a scrap of life, I would dress simply, I would throw myself flat under the sun, exposing not only my body but also my soul.

My God, if I had a heart, I would write my hatred on ice and wait for the sun to come out. With a dream of Van Gogh I would paint on the stars a poem by Benedetti, and a song by Serrat would be my serenade to the moon.

With my tears I would water the roses, to feel the pain of their thorns and the incarnated kiss of their petals...My God, if I only had a scrap of life...

I wouldn't let a single day go by without saying to people I love, that I love them.

I would convince each woman or man that they are my favourites and I would live in love with love.

I would prove to the men how mistaken they are in thinking that they no longer fall in love when they grow old--not knowing that they grow old when they stop falling in love. To a child I would give wings, but I would let him learn how to fly by himself. To the old I would teach that death comes not with old age but with forgetting. I have learned so much from you men....

I have learned that everybody wants to live at the top of the mountain without realizing that true happiness lies in the way we climb the slope.

I have learned that when a newborn first squeezes his father's finger in his tiny fist, he has caught him forever.

I have learned that a man only has the right to look down on another man when it is to help him to stand up. I have learned so many things from you, but in the end most of it will be no use because when they put me inside that suitcase, unfortunately I will be dying.

translated by Matthew Taylor and Rosa Arelis Taylor

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Farewell Letter from a Genius

Gabriel Garcia Marquez, famous writer from Colombia, and Nobel Peace Prize winner for literature, has retired from public life for reasons of health. He has a form of cancer, which is terminal. He has sent a farewell letter to his friends.

It is recommended reading because it is moving to see how one of the best and most brilliant of writers expresses himself & with sorrow. (Even as I'm SURE this would have sounded TWICE as good in Spanish, let us enjoy the English version nonetheless. ..)

He says:

If God, for a second, forgot what I have become and granted me a little bit more of life, I would use it to the best of my ability.

I wouldn't, possibly, say everything that is in my mind, but I would be more thoughtful of all I say. I would give merit to things not for what they are worth, but for what they mean to express.

I would sleep little, I would dream more, because I know that for every minute that we close our eyes, we waste 60 seconds of light.

I would walk while others stop; I would awake while others sleep.

If God would give me a little bit more of life, I would dress in a simple manner, I would place myself in front of the sun, leaving not only my body, but my soul naked at its mercy.

To all men, I would say how mistaken they are when they think that they stop falling in love when they grow old, without knowing that they grow old when they stop falling in love.

I would give wings to children, but I would leave it to them to learn how to fly by themselves.

To old people I would say that death doesn't arrive when they grow old, but with forgetfulness.

I have learned so much with you all, I have learned that everybody wants to live on top of the mountain, without knowing that true happiness is obtained in the journey taken & the form used to reach the top of the hill.

I have learned that when a newborn baby holds, with its little hand, his father's finger, it has trapped him for the rest of his life.

I have learned that a man has the right and obligation to look down at another man, only when that man needs help to get up from the ground.

Say always what you feel, not what you think. If I knew that today is the last time that that I am going to see you asleep, I would hug you with all my strength and I would pray to the Lord to let me be the guardian angel of your soul.

If I knew that these are the last moments to see you, I would say 'I love you'.

There is always tomorrow, and life gives us another opportunity to do things right, but in case I am wrong, and today is all that is left to me, I would love to tell you how much I love you & that I will never forget you.

Tomorrow is never guaranteed to anyone, young or old.

Today could be the last time to see your loved ones, which is why you mustn't wait; do it today, in case tomorrow never arrives. I am sure you will be sorry you wasted the opportunity today to give a smile, a hug, a kiss, and that you were too busy to grant them their last wish.

Keep your loved ones near you; tell them in their ears and to their faces how much you need them and love them. Love them and treat them well; take your time to tell them 'I am sorry';' forgive me',' please' 'thank you', and all those loving words you know.

Nobody will know you for your secret thought. Ask the Lord for wisdom and strength to express them.

Show your friends and loved ones how important they are to you.

Send this letter to those you love. If you don't do it today...tomorrow will be like yesterday, and if you never do it,

it doesn't matter either,

NOW is the moment to do it.

For you,
With much love,
Your Friend,

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

To learn more about Gabriel Garcia Marquez, read his bio at:

Monday, August 25, 2008

"I don't suffer from Insanity"... Part 3

Part 3 to help us plod through the rest of the work week. The long weekend was just glorious!

August 22

It's not that I'm against exercise. It's just that when I look at my body I feel it's already been punished enough!

August 23

Put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another... But above all these things put on love.

Colossians 3:12-14 NKJV

August 24

When we start thinking of things we can do, we begin with prayer -- surely one of the most important ways we can help. In addition to praying for those who are wrestling with grief, probably the next most important thing we can do is listen to them!

August 25

The church is supposed to be a hospital for sinners, not a hotel for saints.

August 26

We need to put things into eternal perspective and remember the promise of Romans 8:28 that God makes everything -- even calamities -- work for our good. Sometimes it's awfully hard to wait for the "good" to "work."

In all things God works for the good of those who love him.

Romans 8:28

August 27

Veni, vidi, visa

Translation: I came, I saw, I did a little shopping.

August 28

Sometimes we feel like we're smothering under the weight of all our problems, then someone comes along and fluffs us us with a word of encouragement.

August 29

No matter how smart we are, weary mothers need lots of help and encouragement -- the kids that comes from family and friends, and especially the kids that comes from God.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Oprah's Book Club

Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy
As I Lay Dying William Faulkner
Back Roads Tawni O'Dell
The Best Way to Play Bill Cosby
Black and Blue Anna Quindlen
The Bluest Eyes Toni Morrison
The Book of Ruth Jane Hamilton
Breath, Eyes, Memory Edwidge Danticat
Cane River Lalita Tademy
The Corrections Jonathan Franzen
Cry, The Beloved Country Alan Paton
Daughter of Fortune Isabel Allende
The Deep End of the Ocean Jacquelyn Mitchard
Drowning Ruth Christina Schwartz
East of Eden John Steinbeck
Ellen Foster Kaye Gibbons
Fall on Your Knees  Ann-Marie MacDonald
A Fine Balance Rohinton Mistry
Gap Creek Robert Morgan
The Good Earth Pearl S. Buck
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter Carson McCullers
The Heart of a Woman  Maya Angelou
Here on Earth Alice Hoffman
House of Sand and Fog Andre Dubus III
I Know This Much Is True  Wally Lamb
Icy Sparks  Gwyn Hyman Rubio
Jewel Bret Lott
A Lesson Before Dying  Ernest J. Gaines
Light in August William Faulkner
Love in the Time of Cholera Gabriel García Márquez
A Map of the World Jane Hamilton
The Meanest Thing To Say Bill Cosby
The Measure of a Man Sidney Poitier
Middlesex Jeffrey Eugenides
Midwives Chris Bohjalian
A Million Little Pieces James Frey
Mother of Pearl Melinda Haynes
A New Earth Eckhart Tolle
Night Elie Wiesel
One Hundred Years of Solitude Gabriel García Márquez
Open House Elizabeth Berg
Paradise Toni Morrison
The Pillars of the Earth Ken Follett
The Pilot's Wife Anita Shreve
The Poisonwood Bible Barbara Kingsolver
The Rapture of Canaan Sheri Reynolds
The Reader Bernhard Schlink
River, Cross My Heart Breena Clarke
The Road Cormac McCarthy
She's Come Undone Wally Lamb
Song of Solomon Toni Morrison
Songs In Ordinary Time Mary McGarry Morris
The Sound and the Fury William Faulkner
Stolen Lives: Twenty Years in a Desert Jail Malika Oufkir
Stones from the River  Ursula Hegi
Sula Toni Morrison
Tara Road Maeve Binchy
The Treasure Hunt Bill Cosby
Vinegar Hill A. Manette Ansay
A Virtuous Woman Kaye Gibbons
We Were The Mulvaneys Joyce Carol Oates
What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day Pearl Cleage
Where the Heart Is Billie Letts
While I Was Gone Sue Miller
White Oleander Janet Fitch

Of the 65 selections, I own 4 of these books but not yet read them. As for those which I've read, I have to shamefully admit that I've only read ONE! "Anna Karenina" which I don't even remember now. I think I read it waaaay, way back in high school. I really have to work on my TBR (to be read) pile! I'm reading "Where the Heart is" now. Just a few more days, and i can cross that book off my my TBR list.

As for "New Earth", I saw one of Oprah's shows and they even have an online class discussing the "New Earth". Hmmm… piqued my interest. Will have to check that out next time I'm at the bookstore.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Article: 'Don't Worry Be Happy'

'Don't Worry Be Happy': happiness is key to longer life
by Claire Rosemberg

PARIS (AFP) - Keep humming "Don't Worry Be Happy". The 1980s New Age-inspired hit got it right. New research shows being happy can add several years to life.

|”Happiness does not heal, but happiness protects against falling ill," says Ruut Veenhoven of Rotterdam's Erasmus University in a study to be published next month.

After reviewing 30 studies carried out worldwide over periods ranging from one to 60 years, the Dutch professor said the effects of happiness on longevity were "comparable to that of smoking or not".

That special flair for feeling good, he said, could lengthen life by between 7.5 and 10 years.

The finding brings a vital new piece to a puzzle currently being assembled by researchers worldwide on just what makes us happy -- and on the related question of why people blessed with material wealth in developed nations no longer seem satisfied with their lives.

Once the province of poets or philosophers, the notions of happiness and satisfaction have been taken on and dissected, quantified and analysed in the last few years by a growing number of highly serious and respected economists -- some of whom dub the new field "hedonics", or the study of what makes life pleasant, or otherwise.

"The idea that there is a state called happiness, and that we can dependably figure out what it feels like and how to measure it, is extremely subversive," says Bill McKibben in his 2007 book "Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future".

"It allows economists to start thinking about life in richer terms, to stop asking 'What did you buy?' and to start asking 'Is your life good?'."

Growth in material wealth adds little to happiness once buying power hits 10,000 dollars a year per head, according to such research.

But happiness can be bolstered by friendship and human community, as well as larger social factors such as freedom, democracy, effective government institutions and rule of law.

In Veenhoven's findings, published in the Journal of Happiness Studies, a scientific publication founded in 2000, the strongest effect on longevity was found among a group of US nuns followed through their adult life -- perhaps reflecting the feel-good factor from belonging to a close-knit stress-free community with a sense of purpose.

While the lyrics from the Grammy-award 1989 "Be Happy" hit were inspired by popular Indian guru Meher Baba, nowadays, in more than 100 countries, from Bhutan in the Himalayas to the US and Australia, economists are working to put "happiness" indicators (a new kind of quality-of-life index) into the measurement of growth.

Happiness itself, according to the specialists, is generally accepted as "the overall appreciation of one's life as a whole", in other words a state of mind best defined by the person questioned.

In his paper, Veenhoven first looked at statistics to see whether good cheer impacted on the sick, but concluded that while happiness had helped some cancer patients suffering from a relapse, in general "happiness does not appear to prolong the deathbed."

Among healthy populations, on the contrary, happiness appeared to protect against falling ill, thus prolonging life.

Happy people were more inclined to watch their weight, were more perceptive of symptoms of illness, tended to be more moderate with smoking and drinking and generally lived healthier lives.

They were also more active, more open to the world, more self-confident, made better choices and built more social networks.

"For the time being we know that happiness fosters physical health, but not precisely how," he wrote.

"Chronic unhappiness activates the fight-flight response, which is known to involve harmful effects in the long run such as higher blood pressure and a lower immune response."

To improve good cheer, he said, there needed to be more research on the impact of residential conditions or on the long-term effects of school on happiness. And studies on job-satisfaction failed to address the question of life-satisfaction at work.

But these findings, he said, opened new vistas for public health.

Governments needed to educate people in the art of "living well", helping to develop the ability to enjoy life, to make the best choices, to keep developing and to see a meaning in life.

"If we feel unhealthy we go to a medical general practitioner," he said. "If we feel unhappy there is no such generalist. We have to guess."

"Professional guidance for a happier life is unavailable as yet. This is a remarkable market failure, given the large number of people who feel they could be happier."

“I don’t suffer from Insanity… 2!”

Long weekend! Yahoo! Then another long weekend next week! Woohoohoo! :D

Here’s this week’s daily collection of fun-filled insights and therapeutic humor from my desk calendar, “I don’t suffer from Insanity… I enjoy every minute of it!” by Barbara Johnson. Enjoy!

August 15
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there were a delicious, “all-natural” food that is nutritious, fat-free, has no cholesterol, and promotes good health? There is! You’ll find it described in Galatians 5:22:23 –the “fruit of the Spirit.” This fruit is wholesome and beneficial – and it’s even better when shared! - Larry Potts

August 16
Amazing! If you hang something in a closet for a while, it shrinks two sizes.

August 17
Beauty tip: Beware of tucking your dress into the back of your underwear after using the rest room. You’ll know this personal grooming error has occurred when you hear snickers from the people you pass on the street. Another giveaway will be the draft you feel on the back of your thighs.

August 18
She who laughs last thinks the slowest.

August 19
In good times and bad, music has always been a part of my life flowing through the laughter as well as the trials. To me, it is a gift from God – a bit of heaven He loans to us while we live on earth to help us survive the hard times, to celebrate the good times, and especially to praise Him in a way no other method can match.

August 20
I would rather walk with God in the dark than go alone in the light.
- Mary Gardiner Brainard

August 21
The only good thing about the decline of my memory is that it has brought me closer to my mother, for she and I now forget everything at the same time. - Bill Cosby

Monday, August 11, 2008

I am a Harmony-seeking Idealist

Harmony-seeking Idealist (HI)

Harmony-seeking Idealists are characterised by a complex personality and an abundance of thoughts and feelings. They are warm-hearted persons by nature. They are sympathetic and understanding. Harmony-seeking Idealists expect a lot of themselves and of others. They have a strong understanding of human nature and are often very good judges of character. But they are mostly reserved and confide their thoughts and feelings to very few people they trust. They are deeply hurt by rejection or criticism. Harmony-seeking Idealists find conflict situations unpleasant and prefer harmonious relationships. However, if reaching a certain target is very important to them they can assert themselves with a doggedness bordering on obstinacy.

Harmony-seeking Idealists have a lively fantasy, often an almost clairvoyant intuition and are often very creative. Once they have tackled a project, they do everything in their power to achieve their goals. In everyday life, they often prove to be excellent problem solvers. They like to get to the root of things and have a natural curiosity and a thirst for knowledge. At the same time, they are practically oriented, well organised and in a position to tackle complex situations in a structured and carefully considered manner. When they concentrate on something, they do so one hundred percent - they often become so immersed in a task that they forget everything else around them. That is the secret of their often very large professional success.

As partners, harmony-seeking idealists are loyal and reliable; a permanent relationship is very important to them. They seldom fall in love head over heels nor do they like quick affairs. They sometimes find it very difficult to clearly show their affection although their feelings are deep and sincere. In as far as their circle of friends is concerned, their motto is: less is more! As far as new contacts are concerned, they are approachable to only a limited extent; they prefer to put their energy into just a few, close friendships. Their demands on friends and partners are very high. As they do not like conflicts, they hesitate for some time before raising unsatisfactory issues and, when they do, they make every effort not to hurt anyone as a result.

Adjectives which describe your type
introverted, theoretical, emotional, planning, idealistic, harmony-seeking, understanding, peace-loving, sensitive, quiet, sympathetic, conscientious, dogged, complicated, inconspicuous, warm-hearted, complex, imaginative, inspiring, helpful, demanding, communicative, reserved, vulnerable

These subjects could interest you

literature, philosophy, psychology, music, meditation, writing, yoga, art, astrology, drawing/painting, spiritual things, handicrafts

Sunday, August 10, 2008

“I don’t suffer from Insanity… I enjoy every minute of it!” :D

Just sharing some “insights” from my desk calendar, “I don’t suffer from Insanity… I enjoy every minute of it!” by Barbara Johnson. I figure we can all use a laugh! Enjoy! :D

August 1
Priceless gifts to give for FREE:
o The gift of favor: Every day, go out of your way to do something kind for someone.

August 2
Church Bulletin Blunders:
“ The ladies of the church have cast off clothing of every kind, and they may be seen in the church basement on Friday. “

August 3
Dear Lord, prop us up in all our leaning ways.

I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
- Isaiah 41:10

August 4
A strong sense of humor can help us survive any situation, but laughter doesn’t make our problems disappear. Instead, we hold fast to the grace He gives us to tolerate today, and we trust Him to carry our burdens in His strong, loving hands – then we laugh! God’s grace is a miracle in itself.

August 5
God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway, the good fortune to run into the ones I do – and the eyesight to know the difference.

August 6
I’ve been very good about watching my weight. I watch it go up and down and up and down. I heard someone call this “the rhythm method of girth control!”

August 7
Life becomes much easier, once you get through youth, middle age, and old age.
- Ashleigh Brilliant

August 8
Prayer is asking for rain. Faith is carrying an umbrella.

August 9
The second day of a diet is always easier than the first. By the second day you’re off it.

August 10
There are several things that may cause men’s stress levels to rise. One stressful activity is brushing their hair and finding that they’re becoming, shall we say, “follicularly challenged”.

August 11
A little smile can brighten someone’s day. And while you’re smiling you might as well go one step further and share a chuckle or two.

August 12
When we’re thinking of ways we can follow Jesus’ example and show a servant’s heart to those in need, there’s no better gift we can give them than the hope of heaven!

August 13
Then you will call out, and the Lord will answer. You will cry out, and He will say, “Here I am”.
- Isaiah 58:9 NCV

August 14
This bumper sticker was punctuated with a bold cross: No matter which direction I’m heading, I’m homeward bound!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Alicia Keys pics

Here are some Alicia Keys pics from her concert last August 5. I can't take credit for taking these pics though. These were taken by DJ Mo Twister and posted on their multiply site ( These are really great pics, taken from the first row. Lucky, lucky! (i actually have a lot more pics from the concert but couldn't post it here. They're all posted on my multiply site though. check it out!)

As for asking for DJ Mo's permission to re-post this, believe it or not, I did! I met him at Magic 89.9's event, "Free Gas Fridays" yesterday at Caltex, Malugay, struck a conversation, asked him about the pics, and he said it was okay to re-post. So there. Kinda funny how it worked out. :D

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

ALICIA KEYS “As I Am - Live in Manila” Concert

ALICIA KEYS “As I Am - Live in ManilaConcert
SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia
August 5, 2008

We arrived kinda late, and missed Luke Mejares’ act altogether. When we arrived, it was already Duncan Ramos’ last song. Right on time, or so we thought. But unfortunately, there was still a two-hour wait after the opening acts, and the concert started almost 10 PM! Aaargh! Defeats the purpose of having the “opening acts” to begin with, to get the audience all pumped up. We were already getting antsy with the long wait, but once Alicia Keys’ appeared onstage, the audience went wild, and all was forgiven. Hehehe…

I so loved the song “Superwoman”… "Even when I’m a mess, I still put on a vest with an S on my chest. Oh yes, I’m a SUPERWOMAN". Would it be too much to admit I almost cried while she was singing that song?

Highlights of the concert where when she sang “No one”, and everyone singing along, and up on their feet, dancing. That was the longest song ever (with the audience singing instead), coz even when Alicia left the stage and said her goodbyes, the people in the audience just wouldn’t stop singing! So after a few more minutes, out back came Alicia. Woohoo!

As expected, the day after the concert, and already there are videos of the concert on youtube. Although there were clear signs everywhere (as well as on the tickets), that “no cameras or recording devices will be allowed inside the venue”, there were video cams, digicams and of course, cellphone cams everywhere. It simply wasn’t implemented. But then again, I’m not complaining. Or how else would we have gotten these pics of the concert to post?

For pics of the concert, check out my photo album. Thanks to Kraig for sharing. At least I didn’t have to bother with my own camera, and just focus on Alicia Keys’ performing on stage.

The lyrics of my two favorite songs… Three if you include the song “Teenage Love Affair” which is the song playing in my head since I woke up this morning! LSS! Last song syndrome!


Everywhere I'm turning
Nothing seems complete
I stand up and I'm searching
For the better part of me
I hang my head from sorrow
Slave to humanity
I wear it on my shoulders
Gotta find the strength in me

Cause I am a Superwoman
Yes I am
Yes she is
Even when I'm a mess
I still put on a vest
With an S on my chest
Oh yes
I'm a Superwoman

For all the mothers fighting
For better days to come
And all my women, all my women sitting here trying
To come home before the sun
And all my sisters
Coming together
Say yes I will
Yes I can

Cause I am a Superwoman
Yes I am
Yes she is
Even when I'm a mess
I still put on a vest
With an S on my chest
Oh yes
I'm a Superwoman

When I'm breaking down
And I can't be found
And I start to get weak
Cause no one knows
Me underneath these clothes
But I can fly
We can fly, Oooohh

Cause I am a Superwoman
Yes I am
Yes she is
Even when I'm a mess
I still put on a vest
With an S on my chest
Oh yes
I'm a Superwoman

* * * * *

No One

I just want you close
Where you can stay forever
You can be sure
That it will only get better

You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don't worry 'cuz
Everything's going to be alright
People keep talking they can say what they like
But all i know is everything's going to be alright

No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you, you, you
Can get in the way of what I feel for you

When the rain is pouring down
And my heart is hurting
You will always be around
This I know for certain

You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don't worry 'cuz
Everything's going to be alright
People keep talking they can say what they like
But all i know is everything's going to be alright

No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you, you, you
Can get in the way of what I feel

I know some people search the world
To find something like what we have
I know people will try try to divide something so real
So til the end of time I'm telling you there is no one

No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one, no one, no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you, you, you
Can get in the way of what I feel for you

* * * * *

Teenage Love Affair

Can't wait to get home
Baby dial your number
Can you pick up the phone
Cause I wanna holla
Daydreamin about you all day in school can't concentrate
Wanna have your voice in my ear till mama come and say it's too late
Cause the lights are on outside
Wish there was somewhere to hide
Cause I just don't want to say goodbye
Cause you are my baby baby
Nothing really matters
I don't really care what nobody tell me
I'm gonna be here
It's a matter of extreme importance
My first teenage love affair

Another secret meeting
On the 5th floor staircase
I'm gonna give you this letter
Of all the things I can't say
Want u to be my first my last my ending and beginning
I write your name in my book your last name my first I'm your mrs
Cause the lights are on outside
Wish there was somewhere to hide
I just don't want to say goodbye
Cause you are my baby baby
Nothing really matters
I don't really care what nobody tell me
I'm gonna be here
It's a matter of extreme importance
My first teenage love affair

Hey boy
You know I really like being with you
Just hanging out is fine
So maybe we can go to first base
Because I feel you
Second base
Want you to feel me too boy
Third base
Betta pump the brakes and baby slow down
I gotta go home now
Cause the lights are on outside
Wish there was somewhere to hide
Cause I just don't want to say goodbye
Cause you are my baby baby
Nothing really matters
I don't really care what nobody tell me
I'm gonna be here
It's a matter of extreme importance
My first teenage love affair
My baby baby
Nothing really matters
I don't really care
What nobody tell me
I'm gonna be here
It's a matter of extreme importance
My first teenage love affair

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Grateful Dad

Good news! Matthew David was found. Like any parent, i breathed a sigh of relief and said a prayer of thanks when I heard the good news. Matthew's dad, Michael Samudio, posted a heartwarming note on his blog. Click on the link to read his post.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Her Nephew was abducted :(

I was browsing my cousin EJ's site when I saw his post about a friend's nephew being abducted. Being a mom myself, i feel for the little boy's parents. Please do help in any way you can. Repost this on your sites, and watch out for the kid when you go out. (He was abducted in Festival Mall Alabang last July 22). And let's all pray that the little boy is safe and is returned home soon.

here's the link to her page:

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Text wisdom

I got this message via text earlier today. Apart from the usual jokes, nuggets of wisdom do sometimes come via text...

"There are two ways to be happy: improve your reality or lower your expectations".

Here's something from my desk calendar:

"The truly happy people are those who have a source of happiness too deep to be seriously disturbed by ordinary troubles". - Marion K. Rich

Paz y bien!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The torture machine

If you’ve ever had a mammogram, you know what this is.

Yup, it’s a torture machine! What else can you call a machine which squashes your breasts until they’re virtually flat, and all you can do is let out a squeak of a scream? Aargh!

Learning about friends and colleagues being diagnosed with breast cancer is enough to make me run scared to my ob-gyne. So after my annual physical, my ob-gyne prescribed me to undergo a mammogram. And though there’s no family history of breast cancer, the fact that there’s a history of cancer at all (my grandfather died of stomach cancer), is enough justification for me to have it done. Hypochondriac? Maybe. Careful? Yes!

It was my first mammogram ever, and let me tell you, it hurt like hell! The horror stories I heard were true! I consider myself as having a fairly high tolerance for pain, so if I say this hurts, it really does! But it’s a necessary evil for women, more so those who are 25 and older. The National Cancer Institute and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommend that women in their forties and older have mammograms every one to two years, but from what I’ve seen, it seems prudent to have regular mammograms earlier.

So even if it does hurt, I’d still say to women everywhere to go for it. Pain or no pain, go for it! It's just 10 minutes of pain anyway. Early detection of cancer increases your chances of survival. And to find out more about breast cancer, check out the link below:

Thursday, May 08, 2008

I feel lucky...

I just got a call from 7-11 and was informed that I won a Samsung E250 from their latest contest. I remember that early Sunday morning when Neil and I went to a nearby bicycle supply store to buy new tires for Paolo’s bike. We’ve been doing some biking in UP almost regularly during the weekends starting this year, and Paolo’s bike tires blew up one time. It was such a big hole that we decided to just buy him new tires. So anyway, after buying new tires, we decided on some hot pandesal. There was no parking in front of the bakery, so we parked instead at the nearby 7-11. To ‘justify’ our parking, I decided to buy a Big Gulp, the slurpee drink. I don’t normally buy that, but since I saw there was a contest anyway, I decided what the heck.

So enjoying my big gulp of Mountain Dew (my favorite-st soda ever!!!), I sent my text registration for the contest. That was April 13. Lo and behold, after almost a month, I get a call that I won a Samsung E250. wait for the letter, go to their Ortigas office, present 2 valid IDs, and I get my spanking-new phone! Yooohooo!!! Yup, I feel lucky!!! :D