Monday, August 31, 2009

Love Letters

Posted by Kero at Monday, August 31, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
....and they express so much pain and poignant love. I will share with you two letters from Ninoy. The first one is for his daughter Ballsy and the latter is for his wife Corazon. Thank you to Hubby for sharing and to Jan for allowing me to repost the second letter.

August 18, 1973

Fort Bonifacio

Makati, Rizal

Ms. Maria Elena C. Aquino

25 Times St. Quezon City

My dearest Ballsy,

I write you this letter with tears in my eyes and as if steel fingers are crushing my heart because I wanted so much to be with you as you celebrate your legal emancipation. Now that you have come of age, my love, a voice tells me that I am no longer young and suddenly, I feel old.

An old poet gave this advice very long ago "when you are sad, remember the roses will bloom in December." I want to send you bouquet of roses, big red roses from my dreamland garden. Unfortunately for the present, my roses are not in bloom, in fact they have dropped all their petals and only the thorns are left to keep me company. I do think it is fitting to send you a thicket of thorns on this memorable day!

I am very proud of you because you have inherited all the best traits of your mother. You are sensible, responsible, even-tempered and sincere with the least pretenses and affection which vehemently detest in a woman. I am sure like your mother, you will possess that rare brand of silent courage and that combination of fidelity and fortitude that will
be the life vest of your man in the tragic moments of his life.

During my lonely hours of solitary confinement in Fort Magsaysay, Laur, Nueva Ecija last March and April with nothing else to do but pray and daydream, with only my fond memories to keep me company, I planned a weekend barrio fiesta for you in Tarlac for your 18th birthday. I fooled myself into believing that my ordeal would end with the fiscal year. I
planned to invite all your classmates and friends and their families for the weekends.

The schedule called for an early departure by bus from Manila and the first stop will be Concepcion, where lunch will be served by the pool. And after lunch, you were to visit the Santa Rita Elementary School to distribute cookies and ice cream to the children of that public school where you were first enrolled.

I guess sheer nostalgia prompted me to include Santa Rita. We were only three then: Mommie, you and I. Those were the days of happy memories little responsibilities, tremendous freedom, a great future ahead and capped by a fulfillment of love. You are the first fruit of our union, the first proof of our love and the first seal of our affections.

From Concepcion we were to proceed to Luisita for the barrio fiesta. I intended to invite a friend who could roast an entire cow succulently. Swimming, pelota, dancing and eating would have been the order of the day.

Sunday morning was reserved for a trip around the Hacienda and the mill and maybe golf for some of the parents and later a picnic-lunch on Uncle Tony's Island. Return to Manila after lunch. I am afraid this will have to remain as one of the many dreams I had in Laur.

Our future has suddenly become uncertain and our fate unknown. I am even now beginning to doubt whether I'll ever be able to return to you and the family. Hence, I would like to ask you these special favors.

Love your mother, whose love for you, you will never be able to match. She is not the greatest mother in the world, she is your sincerest friend. Take care of your younger sisters and brother and lavish them with the love and care I would like to continue giving them but am unable to do so.
Help Noy-noy along and pray hard that he will grow to be a real, responsible man who in later years will protect you all.

You are the model for your three younger sisters. Your responsibility is therefore great.
Please endeavor to live up to our highest expectations. Be more tolerant to Pinky, more accessible to Viel, our little genius-princess, and more charitable to Krissy, our baby doll, and make up for my neglect.

Finally, forgive me, my love, for not having been an ideal, good and thoughtful father to you all as I pursued public office. I had hopes and high resolve of making up, but I am afraid my destiny will not oblige.

I seal this letter with a drop of tear and a prayer in my heart, that somehow, somewhere we shall meet again and I will finally be able to make up for all my lapses, in the kingdom where justice reigns supreme and love is eternal.

I love you,


This is Ninoy's last letter to Cory

My Dearest Cory,

In a few hours I shall be embarking on an uncertain fate, which may well be the end of a long struggle. I slept well last night for the first time since I left Boston -- maybe because I'm just plain tired or I'm really at peace with myself. I want to tell you many things but time is running out and I do not have any machine. After a few more paragraphs, my penmanship will be illegible.

All the things I want to tell you may be capsulized in one line - - I love you! You've stood by me in my most trying moments and there were times I was very hard on you. But if anyone will ever understand me, it is you, and I know you will always find it in your heart to forgive -- and unfair and ironic as it is -- it is because of this thought and belief that I often took you for granted.

Early on I knew I was not meant to make money -- so I won't be able to leave anything to the children. I did what I thought I could do best, which is public service, and I hope our people in time will appreciate my sacrifices. This would be my legacy to the children. I may not bequeath them material wealth but I leave them a tradition which can be priceless.

I realize I've been very stingy with praise and appreciation for all your efforts -- but though unsaid -- you know that as far I'm concerned, you are the best. That's why we've lasted this long. There will only be one thing in the world I will never accept -- that you love me more than I love you -- because my love for you though unarticulated will never be equaled.

If all goes well I should be back in my cell before sundown. Should I be detained do not rush to get home. Take your time and enjoy a side trip to Europe with the girls.

I'll try to call you tonight if the authorities will allow me. Otherwise just remember me in your dreams.


P.S. I offered a special rosary for Papa and I asked for his intercession. You know he never failed me. (Ninoy here is referring to Cory's father, Jose Cojuangco, who died on August 21, 1976)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Weekend Snapshot # 57

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Khan Murjan, Wafi City

See more Weekend Snapshot here.

OWM - Beat the heat!

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 30, 2009 6 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Our Weekend Memoirs

Work hours here in the Middles East is shortened due to the holy month of Ramadan. That gives us time at night to go for a walk around the neighborhood. July and August are the hottest months in Dubai and we could not resist the famous desert from a popular Filipino food chain.

Chowking Halo-Halo Fiesta

Join our Weekend Memoirs here.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Mommy Moments - Name Game

Posted by Kero at Thursday, August 27, 2009 19 sweets for Kero Links to this post
mommy moments

I wanted an Arabic name for my son since he was going to be born in the Midle East. I thought of calling him Yousef to pay homage to the country that gave us our first home. But hubby says it might be difficult for the baby to travel in the future as Muslim names are synonymous to terrorism these days. Added to the fact that the baby's birthplace is United Arab Emirates.

How about Sacha, hubby offered because at that time Sacha Baron Cohen was pretty much famous for his Borat flick. It's a girls name, I argued. French people do that and we've never been to France so there is no point. So the search for a name went on.

At that time, I was trying to finish all of Dan Brown's book. One character we both liked was a Japanese named Ensei Tankado. But the character died somewhere along the plot. I didn't like it. If we are going to name our baby from a book character, the name should be at least celebrated, full of life, or at least lived happily ever after.

So the search went on, until I came across an ancient Greek book that recommends names for babies born according to their star signs. Mentally calculating my due date, I hurriedly flipped on December babies and my eyes caught ANDREAS. Right there, it felt soo right. My son is going to be called this. I read on to the definition and it says: meaning -- Strong, Brave, Manly.

Hubby was not too keen because it may sound girly when we bring him home to the Philippines. Well I don't care. Cultured people know how to appreciate unique, interesting names.

Then we added Ceasar because that is hubby's name. And I want the baby to be forever reminded how great his father is. Take cues from his father how to live his life. If he is a walking replica of his Dad, the better (calling the baby junior will be very uncreative hihi).

Fellow pretty Mommies, that is how we came up with Ceasar Andreas Pinkihan.

If any of those definitions corresponds, Andreas is very rough and tough and thrives on physical. obstacles. He was an early walker, early runner. Barely a year old and he was up on the sixth step of the stairs. He figures out too, how to get down on his own.

He is brave and showed early signs of independence as well. He will never ask you to reach a toy for him. He will figure out how to get up high - recently, he discovered a stool chair is of great help to reach the sink. Seldom does he complain when he hurts himself. When he falls from the bed, he scratches his head (maybe to soothe the area that hit the floor) and gets up on his own. Even when we go out, he will stumble from furious running but still manages to get up on his own. People stares in amazement. These days, he jumps like a seasoned diver in the swimming pool.

One more thing, they never mistook him once for a Filipino. It is always Japanese or Korean until today. Once, while we were at Belhoul for his vaccine, a father exclaimed "He looks like Jacky Chan!" We figured we have to learn Nippongo soon.

My Ceasar and my Andreas. The day they said he looked like Jacky Chan.

This was taken last week. He had fever from teething but he was soo bored inside the house we took him to Dubai Mall for a short walk.

See more Mommy Moments here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Posted by Kero at Wednesday, August 26, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
After three years, we finally had the chance to eat taho (soya milk) again. We went out for a walk round the neighborhood and ended up at Al Attar Center - a popular shopping complex for Filipinos. It is my second time to enter the building (the first was a real estate inquiry) and hubby's third (they used to buy dvds here).

Soya Milk & Hot Taho also has a branch in International City

Stepping inside the building is like coming home to streets of Manila (only this is a cleaner version). Stalls selling phones, jewelries, clothes, ukay-ukay, perfume, and anything of use to Filipinos. There were popular Pinoy food chain like Chow King, Goto King and Andoks. A lady handed us a leaflet promotion of taho and I immediately asked hubby if we could try it. Before we could ask where is the restaurant location, the lady left us.

Hubby decided we will look around since the place is not huge. As we went further inside the building, we saw a large male crowd cheering on a billiard game. Some have not gone home yet, judging from their uniform and their back packs. May pustahan sigurado and i froze thinking where i placed my wallet. Thankfully, i only had the camera strapped around my shoulders. The place was certainly very tricky.

Living in Dubai has certainly made my guards down. You can wear piles of gold and nobody will attempt to grab your neck. You can go to the supermarket at 12 midnight and nobody bothers you. You may leave your car unlocked (it happened to us several times) and it will still be waiting for you at the car park. But sadly, when you are with your own kabayan, you no longer feel safe.

I remember our neighbor complaining to our watchman two years ago that some of her potted plants are gone. The Indian watchman replied "You ask your kabayan." One of hubby's officemates was riding the public transport and a different nationality nudged her, "Your bag is open, be careful with your kabayan."

Anyways, back to Taho, it comes with big and medium cup. We opted for the big cup that costs 12AED (about 120 pesos). I found it expensive but i thought of the nutrients. Certainly it brought back feelings of home. But we will not be coming back for taho anytime soon.

The 10 Commandments For Those Over Forty Years Old

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, August 26, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Read on even if you are decades away from being 40. It might save you from the dreaded mid-life crisis.


1. Focus on enjoying people, not on indulging in or accumulating material things.
(I hope Arroyo has read this... what will she do with those massive wealth?)

2. Plan to spend whatever you have saved. You deserve to enjoy it and the few healthy years you have left. Travel if you can afford it.Don't leave anything for your children or loved ones to quarrel about. By leaving anything, you may even cause more trouble when you are gone.

3.. Live in the here and now, not in the yesterdays and tomorrows. It is only today that you can handle. Yesterday is gone, tomorrow may not even happen.

4. Enjoy your grandchildren (if you are blessed with any) but don't be their full time baby sitter. You have no moral obligation to take care of them. Don't have any guilt about refusing to baby sit anyone's kids, including your own grand kids. Your parental obligation is to your children...

After you have raised them into responsible adults, your duties of child-rearing and babysitting are finished. Let your children raise their own off springs.

5. Accept physical weakness,sickness and other physical pains. It is a part of the aging process. Enjoy whatever your health can allow.

6. Enjoy what you are and what you have right now. Stop working hard for what you do not have..

If you do not have's probably too late..

7. Just enjoy your life with your spouse, children, grandchildren and friends. People, who truly love you, love you for yourself, not for what you have. Anyone who loves you for what you have will just give you misery.

8. Forgive and accept forgiveness. Forgive yourself and others. Enjoy peace of mind and peace of soul.

9.. Befriend death. It's a natural part of the life cycle. Don't be afraid of it. Death is the beginning of a new and better life. So, prepare yourself not for death but for a new life with the Almighty.

10. Be at peace with your Creator. For... He is all you have after you leave this life.

Thank you to hubby for sharing this beautiful e-mail.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Toddler Meal # 15

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 25, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Happy Tuesday visitors! The holy month of Ramadan started last Sunday - you are not allowed to eat in public until sun down. From 6 pm onwards you may break your fast or what they call Iftar and indulge in any food you want. Actually, expats here get excited about Ramadan because of the endless buffet on restaurants and free food from Arabic tents. For the rich Muslims, this is their way of sharing their wealth to the lesser fortunate.

So my little b0y has his share of Iftar as well. Though kids and pregnant women are exempted from fasting but we see to it Andreas gets his share of Arabic food beyond lentil soup and kubos (the Arabic bread) dipped in hummous or garlic paste.

That is brown rice and lamb stew. Since it is packed with protein and iron, i chose to give him strawberries for dessert. The vitamin C he will get from the fruit will aid his body to better iron absorption.

Oh by the way, i stopped giving him his vitamins the other day. That ends his 5-day multivitamin supplement. We noticed that on that period, he only wanted to eat carbo - just plain rice or bread or biscuit. Maybe because he is getting essential nutrients from his multi-vitamin so his body signals he only needs to load on carbohydrates. Yesterday, he ate his scrambled egg, whole of banana, yoghurt, slices of apple, and a dinner of rice and monggo. It's amazing how our bodies can tell what we need.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I Heart Faces - Nostalgia

Posted by Kero at Monday, August 24, 2009 6 sweets for Kero Links to this post

Remember those chilly days at the farm when we were kids and rewarded with sweet corn for behaving and not stepping on any new crop? This picture of my son proudly eating corn on the cob brings back memories of the countryside with my siblings. It was like the ultimate reward for any kid in our typhoon stricken rural area.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sunday Ramblings

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 23, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
So my baby bloggie has been silent for a week. Thank you to those dear blogger friends who continued to visit. You see, Andreas is teething. He had fever for three days but we did not took him to the pedia. I just gave him Tylenol drops and multivitamin drops. Oh yes teething gel as well.

Andreas is not used to vitamins so he is sleepy most of the time hihi. His appetite also has decreased. For two days, he lived on milk and yoghurt and watermelon (maybe because it is cold for his tummy). On the third day, he ate half of the scrambled egg and drank half of yakult (in addition to his yoghurt staple). On the fourth day, he ate a little of banana and sweet corn and had fresh orange juice. Thursday, he was able to eat the chocolate cake i baked and some rice.

He is well now, a lot more talkative (although we still could not understand any of it). He ate half of his oatmeal serving this morning. Though his tooth has not erupted, i stopped giving him teething gel. I see him gums all swollen but he is no longer complaining. I am still giving him the multivatimain though. I figured he needs the Vitamin D supplement to aid his tooth.

Here is hubby feeding Andreas with watermelon. Thank you, darling, because you are such a fantastic Dad. I love you, mwah!

OWM - Chocovilla

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 23, 2009 5 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Our Weekend Memoirs

The weekend was spent visiting Chocovilla at Dubai Festival City. Consisting of a living room, library, bedroom, kitchen, and even a garden, the miniature chocolate home gives information on the origin of chocolate, various chocolate recipes, and live chocolate-making sessions.

This Smarties creation greets you at the entrance of the villa.

The dining table is covered with Nestle Gold. The centerpiece as well is all edible.

The highlight of the event is live chocolate carving done by multi-awarded Filipino artist, Henry Abigan. he is currently a Chef at Le Meridien Hotel, Dubai Marina.

A closer look on his creations -- Dubai's famous icons.

After the thirty-minute tour inside the miniature home, we were given Nestle goodie bags :)

See more Weekend Memoirs here.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


Posted by Kero at Thursday, August 20, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post

Helpless and stranded.

If Britney Were President

Posted by Kero at Thursday, August 20, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
So one-third of the world is displeased with Mr. Obama. The other third is waiting for the next Ronald Reagan (could it be Arnold or Brad?). And the last slice of the world is betting Mr. Obama will last one term like Jimmy Carter.

I presume the famous host David Letterman belongs to the last part because he has been fantasizing about Britney Spears as President (bet you didn't know that huh). And being the good girl she is -- that is why i will adore her to the last of my breath, Brit-Brit gladly obliged and proceeded in her glorious bikini (really lovin' this girl!!) to present how different it will be if she holds the worlds most powerful position.

Ladies and gentlemen, The Top Ten Ways US Will Be Different If Britney Spears Were President.

10. I'd be the first president to wear eye shadow since Nixon.

9. We would only invade fun places like Cabo. (This one I like. Iran and North Korea rejoice!!!)

8. Free pie for everybody.

7. My situation room would be a cabana at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas.

6. I'd lure Osama out of hiding with the irresistible scent of my new fragrance "Circus Fantasy."

5. Every presidential news conference would feature costume changes.

4. America might have a more coherent fiscal strategy.

3. Challenge U.S. to put nightclub on the moon by the end of the decade. (I knew it! Armstrong never made it to the moon! everything was filmed in Arizona desert!)

2. Three words: Vice President Diddy. (and the Arctic Monkeys could come and go the White House...that would be neat)

1. Finally the media would pay some attention to me.

Oh Brit! Thank you because you make the world a happier place!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Have a good laugh!

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 18, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Hubby shared this to me through e-mail and maybe we could all use some humor this Tuesday afternoon.

Human Life in 5 Bottles

Would you care to share which bottle are you now? (",)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Mommy Moments - I Gotta Wear Shades

Posted by Kero at Thursday, August 13, 2009 15 sweets for Kero Links to this post
mommy moments

Here is my 19 month-old Andreas trying to put his own shades.

Join the fun on Mommy Moments here

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Rib Eye Steak

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, August 12, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
If your hubby (like mine) is a dedicated meat lover, this easy recipe is for you.

Rib Eye Steak
Serves 3

3 rib eye portion
3 tbsp garlic powder
2 tsp olive oil
freshly ground pepper

For the steak sauce
balsamic vinegar
soy sauce
Pad Thai chili garlic sauce

Here's how (please proceed upon buying your steak, do not refreeze)

1. Brush the meat thoroughly with olive oil. Coat both sides with garlic powder. Give a good grinding of pepper and marinate. Leave in the fridge overnight.

2. Heat the grill pan. Brush with a little olive oil. Grill the steak for no longer than 20 minutes.

3. Sprinkle with salt and serve immediately with fresh carrots or cucumber. Yes, only sprinkle salt at the last part because the salt tends to dry the meat when you add it while grilling. Steak should be juicy, ayt?

4. For the home made steak sauce, mix equal parts of balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, and chili garlic sauce.

Happy cooking!

couldn't be happier!

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, August 12, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Last night was delish!

We had pasta with pepper steak for dinner. We enjoyed swimming pool for an hour. And Andreas is soo confident now on water! He enjoys floating on the area around 1.6 m deep. He will kick and try to "swim" on his own towards the other side. And you should see the proud look he wears for his accomplishment.

I'm glad we all enjoy the pool now. Unlike before when we both have to look after him on the shallow area -- because Andreas will either drink the pool water or try to walk on the slippery edge. So when we go back to the room, hubby and i are tired and will want nothing more than a deep slumber but Andreas is far from sleepy. Kami ang napagod sa kakahabol at kakaawat.

But last night after swimming, Andreas ate his share of pasta and drank orange juice. He hit the bed an hour earlier befeore his bed time so we were able to sneak a movie date teehee.

We watched The Last Samurai. Though hubby had seen the movie before, he still patiently sat beside me to watch. We took turns giving massage and the rest included La Vie En Rose with details unmentionable :)

When you have a toddler and you can sneak an hour of quality time with your love, it's heaven.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Of Caviar & Weapons

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 11, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
We were with the family dentist last night to continue my root canal session. The television was on, maybe to distract me from the tooth drilling. Thank goodness because I was thirsty for news back at home. You see, we don't have cable subscription. The apartment offers free cable connection but we never bothered to avail. We only have one plasma and Andreas is the chief commander of entertainment. For the last 19 months, Barney, Brilliant Baby, Brainy Baby, Classical Baby and Galloping Mind (yes, they are all pirated.....thank you to the chinky-eyed DVD sellers because those educational videos are all bloody expensive) alternately dominate the screen. I swear hubby and I has memorized 135 videos of Barney.

Dr. Gilbert drilled and placed screw on my tooth for the crown. I kept my eyes shut and listened to the politicians screw my country.

Arroyo and her delegation on a recent trip to US are making headlines -- not for meeting Mr. Obama -- but for a posh dinner Le Cirque. Of course, the administration denied paying for the bill, and Cong. Romualdez took responsibility for the $20,000. How about donating that amount to his constituents? But maybe when you have pending court cases, you need a favor from the Arroyo administration so you take them out, stuffed them with caviar and wash their throat with the most expensive wine in the Big Apple.

If Arroyo agreed on the hotdog dinner, maybe the Filipino people will bury her beside Cory when the time comes.

Next there was Manny Villar who is vowing to give up his real estate business if he ever wins the presidency. How about giving it up before declaring his candidacy? But then, a president's monthly pay check is P45,000. It will never be sufficient for the Villars who are used to their status. So my verdict, NO.Even if he wins the presidency, he will NEVER give up his real estate business.He may place it under somebody's name but after six years, he will be far more richer.

Then there was the investigative report from PCIJ - that Arroyo doubled her millions since becoming President. Combine the assets of Aquino, Ramos, and Estrada after their presidency and they will never come close to the wealth Arroyo has amassed. The First Gentleman is a lucky, lucky man. Unemployed but laughing all the way to the bank.

Lastly, people daw are petitoning for Sen. Ninoy Aquino to run for a higher post. Either Vice President or President. His reply, wait for a sign from his deceased mother. Ever thought about finding a wife first, Senator? (correct me if he is married now).

I still have to go back Wednesday night for the crown of my tooth and I am looking forward to the news. I will have the crowning glory but sadly, my country is not even close to living a glorious life.

My only consolation is we are not buying those elite weapons from US unlike Pakistan and India. Then again, we are soo poor the president can only dine at Le Cirque and cannot purchase weapons to protect the Filipino people.

Toddler Meal # 14

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 11, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Howdy visitors! Hope you are having a wonderful Tuesday. Here is another breakfast for my lil' Andreas.

Yoghurt, fresh strawberries, and slices of orange. He finished Milupa breadsticks earlier so these consist of his late breakfast. I am consciously packing more vitamin C rich foods to his meals to strengthen his immune system. We bring him out everynight and the sudden, extreme change of temperature (41 degrees outside and 24 degrees C inside shopping malls because of aircon) sometimes bring colds and runny nose to toddlers. Also, the increasing number of people positive with H1V1 virus will make any parent in the gulf take extra precautions. So far, Andreas has not experienced any colds and I am still not giving him vitamin C supplements. Hubby and I stick with citrus fruits.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Posted by Kero at Monday, August 10, 2009 5 sweets for Kero Links to this post
This pic has been making rounds on our inboxes and wall photos. It appeared on Manila Bulletin, Page 20, August 6, 2009 edition.

Crazy, Silly, Funny!

Posted by Kero at Monday, August 10, 2009 10 sweets for Kero Links to this post

Sunday, August 9, 2009

East & West Playing Beautiful Music

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 09, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
.....together. I hope this is only the beginning.

Check out the video below of Iranian singer Andy, Bon Jovi, and Ritchie Sambora.

Our Weekend Memoirs - African Children's Choir

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 09, 2009 7 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Our Weekend Memoirs

Over the weekend, we had the privilege to witness the African Children's Choir perform at Dubai Mall. These kids have performed around the globe to raise awareness on the plight of African children who have become orphans due to AIDS pandemic.

The children are aged seven to eleven. All of them have lost one or both parents to poverty or disease.

Their uplifting music brings shine to the heart and warmth to the soul. They are Africa's little voice to the rest of the world.

Share with us your weekend memoirs here.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Encounter With Baladiya

Posted by Kero at Saturday, August 08, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Or police force. Most of our friends here in Dubai refer to police as baladiya but i searched and police in arabic is translated as shorta. I like the baladiya word better so i will forever refer to them as baladiya teehee.

Yup, we had a close encounter with baladiya early Friday morning. For Pinoys reading this, it may seem an ordinary encounter and it's really no big deal but here, the sight of baladiya or the man in green uniform send shivers down your spine. Police visibility here makes people B-E-H-A-V-E. People drive carefully, slowly. People mentally check if they are carrying their labor cards, copy of their marriage certificate, or copy of their passport. People cover their bare shoulders with pashmina shawls. In other words, people here respect the police force. And police here don't even carry guns. They are only seen with pen and paper and it makes you sit up straight and take notice of your actions. YES, you can't even bribe them. They will drag you faster to Al Awir Prison before you can even blink.

Anyway, it was past 1 am Friday morning. we dropped J to their place in Deira (like we have done a lot of times). Their appartment is at the back of Al Kabayl Discount Store. I am not sure what you call the area but there are only few residents. Most of the buildings look like warehouses and parked outside are big trucks with containers. At night, the place is horribly dark.

As soon as J got out of the car, we drove immediately towards home. After 300 meters, we took a right turn and noticed a Nissan Pathfinder Police Mobile following. They honked and I asked hubby if that is a signal for us. Hubby confirmed, we slowed down and stopped. Hubby rolled down his window. The police mobile caught on us.

I was soo nervous but kept a polite smile.

"Good evening. What are you doing here at this time?"

"We came from a party."

"Party. Where party? What are you doing here?"

"We dropped a friend and now we are going home."

"Going home where?"


"Aaah Karama. Where are you from?.... Philippines?"

"Yes, we're from the Philippines."

"Okay, go home. Go"

And i breath a sigh of relief. Thank goodness hubby had only one shot of whatever was offered from the Layad party. If he had consumed more than that and caught drunk driving, i have no idea what will happen to us.

Of course nobody finds that a pleasant experience but the encounter made me feel very secured. Spot checks like that are a must. It will serve as warning to every defiant drunk driver.


Posted by Kero at Saturday, August 08, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
what is wrong with my connection? Iam stuck with Google We're sorry page. I tried clearing the cache and the cookies but i still cannot visit Mommy Journey to link my entry on Mommy Moments huhu.

Somebody please help

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Mommy Moments - Part of the Family

Posted by Kero at Thursday, August 06, 2009 5 sweets for Kero Links to this post
mommy moments

This week's theme is part of the family. My fellow pretty, devoted Mommies ("_"), meet my son's best friend Chuckles - a gosig bulldog we bought from Ikea. Yes, he may not be a living thing but Chuckles or Koko (as my son pronounces his name), is so much a part of Andreas' life. Let me show you..

We bought the stuff dog when he turned six months. At seven months, i noticed his certain fondness for it. It will always be the first thing he will pick up from his mounds of toys. Of course, he often soils it so we bought him two more bulldogs.

When around the house, he drags Chuckles with him everywhere To the kitchen counter, to the bathroom - even when we go out to the corridor for a trip to the rubbish shoot, Chuckles will be held by his left ear. As you will assume by now, he will never sleep without Chuckles.

One of the bulldog stays in the car. The sight of Chuckles comforts him on those long roadtrips when he has to sit alone at the back. When he gets scolded as well, he hugs Chuckles for comfort.

At 19 months now, nothing comes closer to his fondness for Chuckles. His bestfriend, comforter, ever-loyal and perenially available playmate.

Join the fun on Mommy Moments here.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Learn From Jon

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 04, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Jon and Kate are the celebrities I am least interested. I think i will never forgive them for putting their kids through such trash publicity and for raking millions out of the 8 darlings. The sight of Jon's crinkled face and Kate's peroxide blonde strand on Socialite Life (my guilty pleasure.....oopps, there i said it) makes me turn to Gulf News online opinion.

But today, an interesting article was shared by and I am sharing it here because maybe we all have that male friend who can learn from these. Read on and feel free to share.

What Men Can Learn From Jon Gosselin
by Ryan McKee

1. Don't Wear Ed Hardy

Here's the thing that intelligent people have known for a while: Ed Hardy is a clothing brand that is shallow, dumb, and sported by d-bags. Just because their T-shirts are $75 does not mean they're cool. Stop trying to look like you're popular and go back to shopping at Hot Topic or the Gap. In fact, Ed Hardy has become so synonymous with d-bags, we can officially retire it and just call people "Ed Hardies." They don't even have to be wearing the clothes, they just fit the profile. Thank you, Jon, for being such an "Ed Hardy" while wearing Ed Hardy so people will finally get it.

2. Stand Up For Yourself

After getting bullied around by his wife on the show, this ramshackle playboy act is how Gosselin is trying to prove to everyone that he's a man. We're not buying it. Maybe if he wrestled a timber wolf while punching Bear Grylls. If he would have just been a man and stood up for himself in the first place, he wouldn't feel this need to overcompensate.

3. Don't Publicize Your Crises

On top of his premature midlife crisis, Gosselin played out a bad rebound choice -- a 22-year-old party girl -- and a second bad rebound choice -- a gossip writer -- in the public eye. If you're dealing with some issues, the best thing is not to make a highly publicized move to New York. We understand the need to nail anything that moves after a marriage to dictator octo-mom, but do that under the radar. Vacation in Austin or Portland or, better yet, Paris. Their paparazzi don't care about our deadbeat reality stars. While the majority of us don't need to worry about the press, don't publicize your breakdowns on Facebook or in your blog.

4. Keep Your Story Straight

Gosselin has been jumping back and forth between 22-year-old Hailey Glassman and former Star magazine reporter Kate Major. Playing the field is one thing, but you need to be honest about it. Gosselin told, "My heart is always with Hailey." Then less than a week later, he said, "I care about Kate Major, she resigned from her job for me." He needs to work on a lower profile.

5. Don't Hang Out With Other "Ed Hardies"

Like it or not, we're judged by the company we keep. Not only that, but if you hang out with idiots, eventually they'll find a way to screw your life up -- even if it's not intentional. Gosselin decided to take Kate Major up to Michael Lohan's place in Southampton. The estranged father of Lindsay (she's proof of what happens when you're a deadbeat dad), Lohan spent two years in prison on drunk-driving and other charges. Recently, his fiancee claimed he threatened to kill her and himself if she left him. Mr. Smooth. He is not the guy you want to buddy up with. Plus, after the weekend, Lohan freely spoke to the press. Even though Gosselin just hired top-notch public relations firm Rubenstein Communications, Lindsay's dad said Jon isn't with either Kate or Hailey. What happened to bros before press?

6. Don't Forget That You Have Children

You have children and you're no longer with the mother. Don't punish the kids by avoiding the situation. Jon says the divorce is because he just wants to focus on the kids, but he's busy gallivanting around to the French Riviera and Southampton while Kate is taking their kids to the doctor. He doesn't even have a job or a place where all eight kids can sleep comfortably. He opted for an apartment in New York rather than a ranch house to keep his kid farm. He has forgotten that he has responsibilities to them in the present, and that his current choices will be an embarrassment to them in the future. One of his daughters will definitely be a stripper now. Good ol' daddy issues.

Raspberry Summer Cake

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 04, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
This summer is a blast! Did i ever mentioned that Mr. Wonderful bought me a Sony A200 early last month? And on top of that, the bill entitled us to raffle tickets -- which made us won a 10.1 megapixel Sony Cybershot. Talk about camera overload haha. Of course, it is no match to our DSLR but still we are thankful to have won something. It will come very handy when we go home for vacay to Pinas. Hubby warned me not to dangle the A200 on my shoulders least they will drag me to Patikul and that is the end of my maxi-dresses shopping :)

Anyhow, i felt like celebrating so i made a summer cake this morning. It is really very easy to make and i want to share with you the recipe.

Raspberry Summer Cake
Seves 6

250 g. raspberries
140 g. melted butter
140 g. self rising flour
140 g. golden caster sugar
140 g. cake flour
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 eggs
1 tbsp icing sugar

Here's how:

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, Gas 4.

2. Grease a 9-inch pan. Blitz the flour, eggs, vanilla, butter, and sugar in a food processor until well blended.

3. Spread half of the mixture on the bottom of the pan. Then pour in all the raspberries. Top with the remaining cake mixture.

4. Bake for 50 minutes until golden. Dust with icing sugar.

Happy cooking!

Oh, i share with you a snapshot of our prize.

Toddler Meal # 13

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, August 04, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Happy Tuesday, visitors! I share with you today a dinner I prepared for my super likot 19-month old.

Yep, that is good old lasagne washed down with water. Ground beef, lots of carrots and bell pepper, parmesan overload, and the goodness of tomato sauce. Check out my recipe here.

Giving comfort food to our kids during supper time makes them hit the bed earlier ;)

Thank you so much for the visit!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Mr Obama, you have something to learn from George.

Posted by Kero at Monday, August 03, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Thank you to our "office" neighbor because hubby was able to read the Gulf News editorial today. I do not know much about the middle east politics and i am learning a lot from our dinner discussions. Hence, I want to share this editorial for people like me who knows little but has the very right to be concerned on Middle East issues.

Gulf News Editorial
Published: August 01, 2009

US must insist Israeli colony expansion ends

Dear Mr Obama

On the day of the presidential elections, we wrote supporting your campaign. We said your victory would offer the promise of a different America - one that would contribute to solutions to global conflicts instead of instigating them.

In the six months you have been in office, you have proved us right, particularly with regard to our troubled region of the Middle East.

Mr President,

The Arab world has been abuzz over the past few months with your seemingly sincere drive to achieve peace in the region. We are encouraged by the relentless efforts of your special envoy George Mitchell to bridge the gap between the Arab states and Israel in the hope of solving the six-decade-old conflict.

In his latest visit to the region, Mitchell acknowledged that the Israeli colony expansion projects are an obstacle to reviving the dormant peace negotiations. In his meeting on Tuesday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he failed to get the right-wing government to halt the building of new colonies, as you and your secretary of state have repeatedly requested.

Instead of having the courage to blame Israel for hindering the peace efforts, we learned that your administration is asking Arab states to start normalising ties with Israel to boost the peace process. Your administration is asking us to introduce "confidence-building measures". In other words, Arab countries are being asked to reward Netanyahu for shunning peace overtures and confiscating more occupied land to house Jewish colonists in the West Bank, including Occupied East Jerusalem, which we hope will become the capital of the future independent Palestinian state, which you said is the ultimate goal of the current peace drive.

Mr President,

Perhaps a lesson from recent history is appropriate here. Shortly after the landmark Madrid Peace Conference in 1991, which followed the first Gulf War to liberate Kuwait from Iraqi occupation, president George H.W. Bush realised that the principle drawn by that conference - land for peace - was being undermined by the Israeli government, led then by Yitzhak Shamir.

The Arabs have pledged to recognise Israel and enter collective negotiations to achieve peace in the Middle East, based on United Nations resolution 242, among others. This includes the Palestine Liberation Organisation.

But the process agreed in the conference soon appeared futile as the Shamir government rushed to pre-empt potential withdrawal from the occupied lands by speeding up the construction of colonies in the West Bank, the same policy adopted by Netanyahu today.

Although he knew the political risks in an election year, president Bush and his secretary of state James A. Baker III decided enough was enough. In January 1992, the administration voiced its frustration with Israel and declared it would cease its support for $10 billion in loan guarantees to Israel unless the Shamir government halted the colonies projects.

Political historians say the move cost Bush the election. He lost to Bill Clinton. But they also agree that he had known the consequences but decided to take the morally right decision.

Mr President,

Your attempts to broker peace in the Middle East are at a crossroads today. And the long-oppressed Palestinian people and the rest of the world hope you will take a similar stance to president Bush's.

Placing pressure on the Arabs to open up politically and economically to Israel while the latter continues to shun the peace process is like putting the cart before the horse. It will never work.

In 2002, the Arabs presented Israel with a historic peace offer. But the Israelis have refused even to discuss it. Instead, they launched three wars - two against the Palestinians in 2002 and 2009 and one against Lebanon in 2006. The Arab Peace Initiative is still on the table. But Arab leaders have made it very clear early this year the offer will not remain on the table for long. We need a peace partner. Currently we don't have one.

Mr President,

We realise that Israel is your country's closet ally, not only in the Middle East but probably in the world. But appeasing Israel doesn't do its people any good and will certainly alienate the Arabs. The previous administration did just that, leading to the frustration of Arab regimes and the radicalisation of our young. America became the enemy. This sentiment has however been waning since you moved into the White House.

But by being unwilling to take on the party that is obviously stalling the peace process and willing to plunge the region into another war, your administration might soon become an extension of the gruelling eight years of George W. Bush. We sure hope not.

Mr President,

There is a historic window of opportunity today for you to achieve what many American presidents failed to achieve - peace in the Middle East. Arab states pledged to help you. But you, sir, need to take the morally right step.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Weekend Snapshot # 56

Posted by Kero at Sunday, August 02, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post

Good morning, fellow weekenders! We have a sandstormy weekend over here so the family just went guitar shopping near the fish roundabout in Deira. Hubby was asked to be among the performers on their club's upcoming social charity event.

Hubby used to own a Fender acoustic back in Saudi so he wanted to try another guitar. Most of his friends are strumming Yamaha so he settled for the German based Hofner. I share with you this lovely addition to the family :)

See more weekend snapshots here.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

A Woman's Love According to Steve Harvey

Posted by Kero at Saturday, August 01, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I Googled for some song lyrics for hubby's social event on Thursday. Maybe skimming through those songs made me think about the word L-O-V-E this sandstormy Saturday afternoon. And right now, my favorite person to talk about that big thing is Steve Harvey. I am totally digging his book, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment

"Nothing on this planet can compare with a woman’s love—it is kind and compassionate, patient and nurturing, generous and sweet and unconditional. Pure. If you are her man, she will walk on water and through a mountain for you, too, no matter how you’ve acted out, no matter what crazy thing you’ve done, no matter the time or demand. If you are her man, she will talk to you until there just aren’t any more words left to say, encourage you when you’re at rock bottom and think there just isn’t any way out, hold you in her arms when you’re sick, and laugh with you when you’re up. And if you’re her man and that woman loves you—I mean really loves you?—she will shine you up when you’re dusty, encourage you when you’re down, defend you even when she’s not so sure you were right, and hang on your every word, even when you’re not saying anything worth listening to. And no matter what you do, no matter how many times her friends say you’re no good, no matter how many times you slam the door on the relationship, she will give you her very best and then some, and keep right on trying to win over your heart, even when you act like everything she’s done to convince you she’s The One just isn’t good enough.

That’s a woman’s love—it stands the test of time, logic, and all circumstance. "

Light a Candle For Corazon Aquino

Posted by Kero at Saturday, August 01, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I received this tag from dear blogger friend, Jan of Bits & Pieces.

In loving memory of former President Corazon C. Aquino, I am encouraging the blogosphere to light a candle for her. Grab the image below, add your prayer for Mrs. Aquino and link up.


1. Bits & Pieces - Thank you Lord for giving President Aquino
the gift of life. It was a well-lived life as she
touched nations all over the world.
It must have been difficult for her
especially the last months of her life.
But everything is well now as she joins you.
May her family find comfort knowing that
she is now safe in your kingdom.
2. Kero's Celebration - Our gratitude to you, Lord for sharing with the Filipino people, one of your miracles on earth. May the courageous life of President Aquino continue to inspire women all over the world.
3. Your Blog Here

I am passing this on to all of my thoughtful blogger friends.

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