From Journaler

About Being Back

Things I love:

– being able to wash large loads of laundry at one time
– seeing the perennials that we planted last year blooming this year
– the libraries!!
– easy access to medical care (I mean the parking)
– being able to continue the purging process
– instant Play on Netflix

Things I hate, or okay, strongly dislike 🙂 :
– the paper monster!
– the full calendar
– carpets
– weeding
– access to Google Reader

Finally, Someone in the Philippine Media Gets It Right

And a lawyer to boot. You won’t usually see “Filipino”, “lawyer”, “writer”, and “understands Catholic teaching” all in the same sentence. Add to that he’s got an understanding of how contraceptives REALLY work. But hey, there’s always got to be a first time for everything, right?

Contraception and Abortion

A small excerpt, but you do have to see the whole thing to appreciate its impact (and its truths):

The more important moral issue which may even have legal implication is the connection between contraception and abortion. It has been repeatedly pointed out that the following contraceptives have already been medically proven to directly cause abortion: Depoprovera, RU 486, Intra-Uterine Device, Norplant and the Morning-After-Pill (Please see Project Abortifacients, Human Life International, June 1991). This is a claim that has never been denied or disproven by the proponents of the bill and their supporters. Yet the proposed bill will make them available to women. So it is quite clear that even if the bill still considers abortion as illegal and a punishable criminal act, it is nevertheless promoting abortion. In effect, the bill is promoting or abetting an act which it considers illegal. There is no free will or freedom of choice involved here. Such freedom definitely does extend to opting for something illegal.

Thank you very much, Atty. Jose Sison! Now, prayers needed that people actually read and heed…

Hat Tip to Erwin Daculan at Pinoy Defensor Fidei.

This is Why Pinoys Don’t Get Depressed.

Only Pinoys would get THIS passionate about food. Yup, believe it or not — this song is about a guy walking into a restaurant and not getting any of the things he wants from the menu. It’s the nearest thing to “hard rock” you’ll ever see on this blog. And talk about uninhibited. Hee!

Here are the lyrics for your edification (as an old boss of mine loved to say) LOL. (Warning: Depending on who you ask — there is one word there that could be heard either as a cuss word, or not.)

Can You Believe This? Defund Planned Parenthood!!

My hubby does the taxes in our household — bless his heart — since our move to Ohio our taxes have been less complicated and we haven’t needed H&R Block like we did in the past, but still, I wouldn’t want to do it myself. Fortunately, I’m one of those people who really doesn’t have to worry about the taxes — hubby takes care of it — when there’s a refund, he knows what to do with it; when we have to pay taxes, he knows how to take care of that. But neither of us knew how much of our tax dollars ended up with organizations/businesses that we absolutely do not want to support HAD WE THE CHOICE. Talk about blood boiling. Not a very fun state of mind to be in in 90-degree Ohio weather, I can tell ya.

Want more? Here’s the Stephanie Simon article: Extending the Brand: Planned Parenthood Hits Suburbia. Read it and weep. If you like charts, look here.

They’re not satisfied with Black Genocide, now they’re going after the affluent too. I wonder who’s next on the list. Asians? Mexicans? Who knows…

Note: The Black Genocide website has some very chilling facts on its introductory page, but it only stays for a minute, then it takes you to the homepage, but nobody should miss it, so I’m quoting here:

The purpose of this website is to reveal the disproportionate number of black babies exterminated by the abortion industry in America.

Although black women constitute only 6% of the population, they comprise 36% of the abortion industry’s clientele. The leading abortion providers have chosen to exploit blacks by locating 94% of their abortuaries in urban neighborhoods with high black populations.

This high rate of abortion has decimated the black family and destroyed black neighborhoods to the detriment of society at large.

Combine that with Mr. Unrestricted Abortion Obama …. and what have we got, America?

You know what frustrates me? Several Catholic teens I know are not sure they want to support Obama or McCain. And yet they are very supportive of organizations like Save Darfur and Invisible Children. I love these kids to death, but man, sometimes I just want to shake them. America needs their support. America has dying children, and sometimes I think we just don’t see them.

And let’s not forget that PP’s so good at this, it’s even “reaching out” to other countries (International PP got its start in India, but got funding from PP USA early on):

Is that scary or what?


Wanna learn more about Margaret Sanger?

Margaret Sanger, Founder of Planned Parenthood, In Her Own Words
The Truth About Margaret Sanger

Comedy of Errors, or a Very Special Kind of Corned Beef

Mama asks what we want for lunch. (Mama is visiting from St. Louis and helping out in the cooking department because I still can’t cook much.) She asks Tops (my brother who’s also visiting from Philly for the weekend). Tops wants corned beef.

We look for the tomato. Mama is convinced we had one more. Turns out Aisa chopped both tomatoes that Daddy bought, so we had already used them up. I said no worries. I have tomatoes somewhere, I know. But I can’t find the canned tomatoes that I transferred to the Prego jar…. hey wait, what about the freezer? Jar not here, but oh, here you go, Mama, here’s some red stuff.

Mama proceeds with the cooking. I’m in the next room, the study, trying to find our long lost lessons in two months’ worth of MESS.

Mama: Ikaw ba ang nag-puree nito? (Did you puree this yourself?)
Me: Hindi ko na maalala. (I can’t remember.)
Mama: Iba. (It’s different.)
Me: thinking… what would be different about it? Siguro nga po. (Maybe.)

5 minutes later.

Mama: May kulay. (There’s color.)
Me: thinking… why would there be color? I only buy natural stuff. Po? (Polite way of saying “really???”)

5 minutes later.

Mama: May, sigurado kang kamatis ito? (Are you sure these are tomatoes?)
Me: Bakit po? (Why?, politely)
Mama: Matamis! (It’s sweet!)

Me, finally going into the kitchen: Po??? (What?)

Finally seeing the way-different redness of the “frozen tomatoes” — Oh no!!!

It’s raspberry!! More accurately, raspberry sauce, for chocolate cake!

Me: Inilagay n’yo na po? (Have you used it yet?)
Mama: Kanina pa! (A while back!)
Me, looking at the purply corned beef in the skillet. thinking YUCCCCHHHHH….. : Baka po puedeng i-drain tapos lagyan na lang ng patis. (Maybe we could just drain it and add fish sauce.)
Mama: Nilagyan ko na ng asin. (I already put salt.) ‘Wag na lang nating sabihin. (Let’s just not tell them.)

Too late. Paco heard us talking and announced to everyone before lunch: Raspberry corned beef!!!

Needless to say, we were all laughing and joking all throughout lunch. Numerous references to the Friends episode where Rachel puts beef and peas in the trifle (warning: some material not suitable for kids). Mama says something about not trusting first-trimester pregnant women in the kitchen.

Good thing I have my own personal Joey (Dad).

What’s not to like? Potatoes? Good. Raspberry? Good. Corned beef? Goooooood!!!

Okay, he didn’t really say that, but he and Tops ate a lot. I love men with strong stomachs. Tops predicts we’ll be talking about this 5 years from now.

Cheetos and Rice.

That’s what I’m eating right now. I thought I had turned the corner over the weekend but yesterday I was back to feeling sick all afternoon and evening, and again today. Blech. I have no idea what I’m having 2, 4, 6, and 8 hours from now… sigh.

Cute Song from Le Papillon

Last year, the family enjoyed a French movie called Le Papillon. There are a few adult-themed moments in the movie; we either pre-screen and then ff when watching with the kids, or talk over the dialogue. But the child and her developing relationship with the grumpy grandfather figure was just enchanting to watch. Yesterday, I found the cute song they were singing together (well, actually, Michel Serrault just talks, and Claire Bouanich sings):

The lyrics can be found in another youtube video with the movie scene itself.

Le Papillon (The Butterfly) French lyrics

Pourquoi les poules pondent des oeufs?
Pour que les oeufs fassent des poules.
Pourquoi les amoureux s’embrassent?
C’est pour que les pigeons roucoulent.
Pourquoi les jolies fleurs se fanent?
Parce que ça fait partie du charme.
Pourquoi le diable et le bon Dieu?
C’est pour faire parler les curieux.

Pourquoi le feu brûle le bois?
C’est pour bien réchauffer nos coeurs.
Pourquoi la mer se retire?
C’est pour qu’on lui dise Encore.
Pourquoi le soleil disparaît?
Pour l’autre partie du décor.
Pourquoi le diable et le bon Dieu?
C’est pour faire parler les curieux.

Pourquoi le loup mange l’agneau?
Parce qu’il faut bien se nourrir.
Pourquoi le lièvre et la tortue?
Parce que rien ne sert de courir.
Pourquoi les anges ont-ils des ailes?
Pour nous faire croire au Père Noël.
Pourquoi le diable et le bon Dieu?
C’est pour faire parler les curieux.

Ca t’a plu, le petit voyage?
Ah oui beaucoup!
Vous avez vu des belles choses?
J’aurais bien voulu voir des sauterelles
Des sauterelles ? Pourquoi des sauterelles ?
Et des libellules aussi,
A la prochaine fois, d’accord.

Je peux te demander quelque chose?
Quoi encore?
On continue mais cette fois-ci c’est toi qui chantes.
Pas question.
S’il te plait.
Non, mais non.
Allez, c’est le dernier couplet.
Tu ne crois pas que tu pousses un peu le bouchon?

Pourquoi notre coeur fait tic-tac?
Parce que la pluie fait flic flac.
Pourquoi le temps passe si vite?
Parce que le vent lui rend visite.
Pourquoi tu me prends par la main?
Parce qu’avec toi je suis bien.
Pourquoi le diable et le bon Dieu?
C’est pour faire parler les curieux.

Good for French lessons!

Thankful, Part 2

For freshly-done laundry.
For moments of reprieve from all-day-sickness
For Panera. And Chipotle.
For congee.
For a hubby who after 18 years will still do anything for me. And more.
For conscientious children who help out when they see the need.
For children who fight, but forget all about it the next day.
For an 11-yo who makes Jell-O for his 6-yo sister.
For a 9-yo who toasts bread for his 6-yo sister.
For their love of music.
For their innocence.
For their trust.
For their great love for Dad.
For tears, when they miss him and want him to come home.
For the Rosaries we share daily.
For the love of reading.
For Emma.
For late night owls.
For $100 rebates.
For poets who love life.
For Janet Smith.
For Cormac Burke.
For the rain.
For forgiving seedlings.
For the neighbor who is gone and can’t complain about the weeds.
For friends who pray for us.
And a thousand other gifts I am forgetting to name at present.
Because today, it’s enough to just be thankful.

Prince Caspian

Some notes on the movie:

First of all, WE LOVED IT!!!!! Even though there are many things to quibble about, just evaluating THE MOVIE ITSELF, we would have to say it is a definite keeper. This one will go on our (very picky) shelves. The cinematography, the costumes, the sceneries, the acting (for the most part), even the plot (thought not as faithful to the book as one would hope). I would rather watch this movie a hundred times over than any of the other inane offerings at our local cinemas these days…

That said, some things that we didn’t like:

  • Let’s go ahead and get it out of the way: the kiss. Though it was a very chaste kiss, and seemed to fit the ages of the actors and the movie’s plot, it was not necessary. It was sweet, and given that (spoiler ahead) Susan is not supposed to be back for The Last Battle, it kinda makes sense to sneak that in there. But again, not necessary. The movie would have been FINE without it. To their credit, however, it doesn’t really detract from the movie’s value either. It just doesn’t add a whole lot, but I can see how some teeny-bopper non-book fans may like it a lot.
  • Reepicheep was not the noble, gallant mouse we were all expecting. He was a little too cartoony and coarse for our taste, which ruins it quite a bit since Reepicheep is one of the major characters in the book. He was just a little too 21st century both in dialogue and action to fit in perfectly.
  • I personally am not that happy with Ben Barnes, and thought they could have gotten a better actor. Maybe I’m just stuck in what I imagined Prince Caspian to be. Okay, I’ll give you that he IS quite dashing. My 17-yo doesn’t have any complaints so there you go.
  • Too violent in some spots. But some may see that as a definite plus. For example, knight- and soldier-crazy boys like mine. And martial-arts-crazy girls like my 17-yo.
  • Susan being such an asset in battle was inspiring, but somewhat unbelievable. Even my black belt of a daughter probably wouldn’t have been able to kick-___ much as Susan did in the movie. The fight scene between Miraz and Peter was first-rate though. (The kids had complaints about Miraz’ moment of demise which was different from the book 🙁 ).

There are several more, but too petty to put on here. If you want more reviews, see my links on my “shared stuff” on the right. Macbeth has posted her opinion and so has Elena Maria Vidal.

Yena is Funny

In bed this morning, still sleepy.

Yena: Mom, how long can nuns speak?
Mom: Depends on the order. Some nuns don’t speak a lot because they’ve taken a vow of silence, some can speak as long as they want.
Yena: Nuns can’t speak, but they can breathe, right Mom?
Mom: Yes.
Yena: I want to be a nun that can speak as long as I want.
Mom: Okay.

The other day, coming in breathlessly from playing outside with the newly arrived organic soil, pausing long enough to put her shoes on.

Yena: Mom, we’re going to put it in the wheelbarrel!
Mom: I think you mean “wheelbarrow”.
Yena: Yes, wheelbarrel!!
Mom: No, Yen, it’s wheel, barrow.
Yena: Oh. (trying again) wheelbarrel! (then laughing)
Mom: Try it: wheel…. barrow…
Yena: Reelbarrow!!
Mom: I give up.

At 3 am 2 nights ago… in the family bed…

Yena stretches, grunts, moans softly, like she’s dreaming…. then whines… and then, from the depths of her dreamy state: “…..bored…!!!”
Her dad and me? Laughing Out Loud. Only Yena can dream about being bored.

Brain Dump # 23409815638

I think I should follow my dd’s example and have a new category: Brain Dump, and password-protect everything, just so I’m not inflicting my no-direction posts on readers…. I often wonder why people come here since the comments box is usually empty. Not that I mind really, when I was blogging mostly food I had many more comments (and less visitors actually) but I had such a difficult time keeping up with conversations and trying to make everyone happy by always replying, etc. I actually like that (it seems) most of my visitors these days are moms like me who understand first-hand how difficult it is to maintain real life AND blog, without having to assume the added responsibility of entertaining people. That doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy answering people’s questions or offering my opinions, I am Google queen after all and some of my dearest friends have come to rely on my (hah!) expertise when trying to find answers.

But I also appreciate the quiet… the handful of people who comment but are becoming more like IRL friends, unlike others in the past who leave empty words that have no meaning at all…

I am also in a happy state, and quite peaceful at the moment. I wish I could put my finger on the ONE thing that makes it all come together for me these days, but I can’t. Call it a confluence of favorable factors if you must, but really my tendency is to attribute it to NOTHING but God’s awesome Grace. My life is just full-full-full of blessings right now. Sometimes I can’t see straight from the joy of it all. Don’t misunderstand. The first floor of our room right now is looking like a pigsty due to the still-unfinished decluttering, which now includes the basement, because we’re having a garage sale in a few days…. our calendar for the rest of May is as crazy as crazy can get… I have a dear loved one who is going through so much right now my heart is just breaking for him… we have parenting issues from time to time… hubby is as stressed and as busy as one has come to expect….

And I don’t know if it was Consecration last December….. or the trip to Lourdes…. or just the bunch of friends that pray for us…. okay, so I think it’s safe to say, it’s all of those…. and then again, of course, all of those are direct offshoots of… you guessed it, God’s Grace.

Because His Grace *is* enough. And knowing that He’s always there. Always looking out for me, my family, my needs… always knocking down those branches and twigs and overgrown weeds and thorny bushes that stand in my way, so that I can keep my focus on Him… only Him….

This past week I was sorting five boxes of STUFF that Dad brought up from the basement. In them are all these pictures, and letters, and mementoes…. saved up from years before and because of all the moving got relegated to indescript containers that hold no sign of the treasures in them. I had completely forgotten about some of these things… I’m so glad now I didn’t just one day throw them all in the dump in a fit of despair. Though I know we still have a long way to go towards getting rid of our material attachments, I am infinitely grateful I kept these things. You know what the most important finds were? Letters. That I wrote. To God. In the days of my youth, my uncertainty, my loneliness… those days 10, 15, 20, 25 years ago when I felt most down and alone and unloved. There weren’t a lot of those days, thinking back now, though I’m sure that in my young mind those days were hard to bear. But I had been writing to Him, as one friend to another, as a daughter to her Father, as a sister to a dear Brother, as a bride waiting for her Lover…

Often these days I think of how I have grown so much in my faith over the years…. but still I have this feeling of unsatisfaction, of unworthiness, of the overwhelming feeling that the journey is not complete. And no, it isn’t. But often I despair of not having enough faith in God, beating myself up for not trusting Him with every bit of my being. Often I ask Him why He hasn’t given me the grace to be more patient, more loving, more good. Often I am guilty of the sin of presumption. Often I ask why I’m not as holy as this or that person whom I admire. And having found these letters, I’m just amazed. Not at my own faithfulness, though that surprises me in a pleasant way. But at HIS FAITHFULNESS. Because almost every letter that contained a heartache, a concern, a problem…. all of them have been answered. Even the ones that sound most ungrateful or even angry. The ones that haven’t been answered (and really, I haven’t found a major one) stare back at me now and give me one thought: I’ve been faithful to you all these years… I’ve given you your heart’s desires, I’ve provided for you and cared for you and never let you down…. so you don’t have to doubt Me. Because in these letters You have proof that I keep My promises.

Our Lord is Ever Faithful. And though it gives me great shame to see how I’ve doubted Him off and on through my 40 years, I’m mostly just REALLY REALLY GRATEFUL. For all of THESE…. His Gifts. He is One Awesome God Indeed.

En pointe

This week has been spent in my 9-yo’s room — decluttering, reorganizing, etc.

Here’s Spidey, back in his domain, celebrating with a dance on Migi’s finally-clean bedroom carpet.


Heee… mom’s giddy-crazy that one more room is DONE!!! So I’m allowed to have a little fun with Spidey, don’t you think?