September 27, 2012

A Guitar For My Daughter?

I was quite pleased with how my daughter performs in school recently and she has been cultivating her talents in arts.  She just told me that her group might be joining another school competition for video making and editing and she’s just so excited about it.  Meanwhile, I was thinking if my daughter had also pursued her passion for music.  She does not sing but she loves to play guitar.  During my last vacation, she had shown me some of her learned musical pieces.  In fairness, she’s quite good considering that she does not have any formal lessons in guitar.   Sometimes, I feel  like I wanted to motivate her more by buying her a decent guitar from Lovepedal Eternity guitar center, perhaps?  But nope, I’m sure that she would say No for now.  That is because she has other priorities now.

Anyway, whatever my daughter’s passion is, I am just more than willing to support her.  I wanted her to believe in herself and put her best efforts forward to achieve whatever her ambitions are. That’s the least that a mother could do. :)

September 26, 2012

Dirty Ice Cream : Thailand Style!

On my way back to Cambodia, while waiting for the van service, I chanced upon this dirty ice cream cart in front of the transport station.  This Thai guy seems to have a lot of regular customers in this area as I suddenly saw a number of people rushing to his cart as soon he stay foot on the parking area.

My curiosity drove me to try one.  A small cup costs about THB10 or PHP15 (in our own currency).  There are toppings to choose from: sweetened nata de coco, sweet rice cake, sweetened beans.  I opted for nata de coco.  The taste is not very far from our own version of dirty ice cream.  But it's far better than those that I've tried in Cambodia.

I think the idea of having the ice cream cart on wheels is a better option compared to our traditional ice cram cart in the Philippines. It wouldn't be so tiring for the vendor to walk around and push the cart the whole day.

What do you think? :)

What To Bring Home?

I'll be back home within the next two weeks and since it has been a Philippine tradition to bring home some gifts to family and relatives, I am thinking of what would be the best souvenir gifts that I would bring home for the male members in the family.  Before, I used to buy shirts and caps for my elder brothers but it would be boring if you keep on buying same old stuff all the time.  I was thinking if alec bradley cigars would be a perfect replacement from the usual stuff that I buy.  Well, most of them are smokers and  a few of my male relatives love to drink, thus I suddenly thought of buying quality cigars or liquor.

Anyway, whatever that I would bring, I'm sure that they will be delighted to get it.  After all, bringing home some souvenirs is just a way of getting in touch with relatives in a most simple and thoughtful ways.  I used to get excited before whenever I receive "pasalubongs" too.  It's in the culture and it's just difficult to get away from it especially if you see the lovely smiles in their faces after receiving their gifts.  That's a wonderful feeling for me, too! 

September 20, 2012

Initial Plans

Oh well, I feel that I'm getting a bit disorganized lately.  I only have more than 2 weeks left before my much awaited home leave.  Yay! I'll be free from work for 28 days! What a treat!  I already have some plans for my forthcoming vacation but as compared to my previous trips, I am feeling messy this time.  Until now, I haven't finalized anything yet.  Actually, this is what I have planned....

I will take a night flight from Siem Riep to Manila on my last day of work prior to my home leave. Actually, I already have a confirmed booking for my flight to Manila.  However, I don't have a return booking yet.  It's all because until now, I couldn't make up my mind if I'm going to take a flight from Cebu Pacific or Tiger Airways.  The reason? I will return here in Cambodia via Bangkok as I'm going to treat my kids for a holiday vacation at Bangkok.  In fact, I'm beginning to worry now as I haven't made any bookings yet for that trip. I couldn't afford to change the date of our vacation as I have a commitment to return back to work first week of November.  As for the kids, they have to return back to school, as well, the same day that I have to return back to work.  I think I really have to fix things really soon.  I'm determined to try Tiger Airways this time.  So probably, even without promo fares, I will still push through with my initial plan.

As for our hotel bookings at Bangkok, it's the same thing, I haven't done anything yet.  But hotel booking is less of a worry for me as there are so many available options.  Well, I did check quite a few number of hotels at Agoda and I'm already eyeing to book on Bangkok City Hotel. I also have ideas already on what will be our day to day activities at Bangkok.  Later this week, I'll be at Chantaburi Thailand for a relaxation and a "little shopping".  Well, I guess, I have to make a move by tomorrow. If not, I'll be really running short of time.

I expect to accomplish something by tomorrow na.  See you then!  

September 10, 2012

The Value Of Time

Recently, I feel that I was very busy that I couldn't find TIME for everything.  I feel that I'm always rushing and would maximize my time to the fullest each day.  Having a stressful,  full time job and maintaining some blogs and online tasks is not really easy.  It might be well for others who work on only one shift and can find time to check on their personal emails and peep on their blogs during break times while on the office.  But not for me, as I can only check on my personal stuff off work. There is Internet connection in the office but I just used it to check on company emails.  I take care of everything about myself, cooking my own foods, doing the laundry and ironing by myself, going to market, cleaning my own room, etc. Well, I think it's quite a challenging task.

Reading this story below somehow made me realized the value of time.  Sometimes, we are too much focused about work and ourselves that we often neglect on giving time to important people in our lives, whether it be family, friends, colleagues and every people that surrounds us.  Inter action with other people is very important. We wouldn't know but perhaps a minute of your time each day that you're giving to these people means so much to them.  We have to spend quality time with people who matters most to us.  I still believe that quality still prevails over quantity.  We have to spend every minute with people in a way that we would leave a "mark" in their hearts, somehow....

The story below is just one of the many stories that I loved most.  You might be familiar with it as it is widespread on the internet but the author is unknown.  I think this is still worth sharing, as most of us might be guilty on this.

Please read and enjoy.......

Thanks For Your Time
Unknown Author

It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him.

Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday."
Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.
"Jack, did you hear me?" "Oh sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It's been so long since I thought of him. I'm sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago," Jack said.

"Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence' as he put it," Mom told him.

"I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said. "You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in your life," she said. "He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important... Mom, I'll be there for the funeral," Jack said.

As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser's funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.

The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time. Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time. The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture... Jack stopped suddenly.

"What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked. "The box is gone," he said. "What box?" Mom asked.

"There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was 'the thing I value most,'" Jack said.

It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it. "Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him," Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom."

It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days," the note read.

Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention.

"Mr. Harold Belser" it read.

Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note inside.

"Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I valued most in my life." A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.

Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved:

"Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser." "The thing he valued time."
Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked.

"I need some time to spend with my son," he said. "Oh, by the way, Janet... thanks for your time!"


September 3, 2012

Mika's Work Of Art!

I never realized that my daughter Mika has an inclination in arts.  I know that she loves to draw and color since she started schooling but I never expect that she will continue with that hobby until she grew up.  Currently she's in high school and she loves to join competitions in school which has something to do with arts, like slogan and poster making contests.  She also followed the foot steps of her "kuya" and try her hands in video making and editing.  So far, her group in school was able to join an inter-school competition and they won first prize which gave them the opportunity to represent their school and our city in a national competition.

Few days ago, she sent me the above drawing that she made personally for my Mom.  It's simple but the fact that my daughter did it made it even more special.  In fairness it's very close to how my Mom looks like. (lol)

Keep it up anak! Next time, yung sa akin naman ang ipapakita ko dito. (lol)


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