DIY Pirate Birthday Party for the Little Captain

Nothing expensive, nothing lavish, just a lovingly prepped up first birthday celebration for the little man that made a big change in my life.

I couldn’t emphasize it more and I’ve finally turned into one of those people who just couldn’t stop saying how time flies so fast! Indeed, it feels only yesterday when I first announced that we were expecting, got comfortable with the whole pregnancy thing, received so much love at my baby shower, did the obligatory belly-flaunting shoot amid a threatening storm, finally gave birth, and welcomed our new addition into the Christian world.

DM and I have successfully conquered 365 days of being pooped on, peed on, paranoia, and arguments on whose style is better. And to brace ourselves for the rest of our parenting journey, we made it a point to celebrate with dear friends and family.

If it were up to DM, an intimate gathering with good food would have been enough. But of course, being the DIY mom that I am, I got overly excited on the little details. We decided to have a pirate theme party on the basis that Baby D gets so attentive whenever we read him Jake and the Never Land Pirates during bedtime. So he must likes pirates, right?!

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The event was held at home so it was quite challenging to eliminate Continue reading

Sleep Tight, Little Syrian Boy

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This cruel world saw how you lay on the shore

Face touching the sand, tiny hands wrinkled and cold

Dampened clothes, they must have been prepared with love

Now the sea breeze whispers, “Good night, sleep tight…”

You’ve reached your destination without a breath

But don’t worry darling, heaven really is where you’re meant

– Q

This is my humble ode to the Syrian boy washed ashore on a Turkish beach. We all saw it. I couldn’t look at the photo twice that I had to hide it each time it appeared on my news feed. It was just heartbreaking because it really reminds me of my own little boy. His tiny, fragile body and his serene face as if in deep slumber. Much more, it’s an image so poignant because it prods us to think about how another innocent life is taken away by war.

Image credit to the owner: Artists around the world had recreated the distressing photo, but I like this one best because it somehow gives us an assurance that the Syrian boy is in a much happier place now, one that he truly deserves.

Motherhood is a Life-Sucking Pretentious B*tch

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No matter how much you admire your mother or how fascinated you are with your now responsible married friends, you will never truly grasp how astounding motherhood is until you become a mother yourself. But even then, you’ll still find how difficult it is to fully comprehend its vastness.

While most mothers would melodramatically describe how seeing their child smile to them for the first time was the moment they realized they were now a parent, my “moment” occurred while I was in the toilet a few days ago. After about an hour of exhausting all of my techniques to put my four-month old to sleep, I was finally able to run to the bathroom to pee. But just as I was about to give a long sigh of relief, I heard him again, this time with a screeching, more demanding cry. He hates it when he wakes up at night and not feel my presence within two feet. And he makes sure that he’s making a strong statement. Between his helpless cries echoing around the house and my defenseless state of just waiting to finish peeing, I had an epiphany: this was motherhood.

Between his helpless cries echoing around the house and my defenseless state of just waiting to finish peeing, I had an epiphany: this was motherhood.

“Life will never be the same,” everyone told me before, during, and after I gave birth. Turned out, I didn’t need that much reminder, given that his first six weeks in this world found me struggling

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Baptism Celebration With A Dash of DIY

Perhaps one of the things I was rushing to do once our baby was properly settled at home was to have him baptized. Baptism months after birth has always been mandatory for both mine and my partner’s family. But aside from this fact, it was an important step to take if we wanted (and needed) to take our little champ to places. I’m not that religious nor am I superstitious, but there’s this belief that it’s bad luck to travel with an unbaptized child and as I always see it, there really is nothing to lose if you allowed yourself to give in to these kinds of conformity every now and then.

With less than a month’s notice, it must have been the quickest party planning I’ve ever done (aside from a spontaneous one last year) and having my baby literally in my arms 80% of the day didn’t help with the necessary preparations I wanted to do with the tiny decor details. The biggest challenge was that I couldn’t be at the reception venue to do or oversee the set-up since I needed to be at the church for the actual baptismal rites. Thankfully, I got help from my supportive sisters who flew in from Hanoi and Manila, and my dear cousins, one of whom was a professional interior designer whose creativity I trusted when it came to executing what I wanted. With a detailed “how-to and what-to” guide and a bag of knick-knacks I managed to prepare at 1 am before the big day, we were able to pull off the celebration just fine!

10991046_1033647033315411_697250878661470573_n copy copyThree huge images of the celebrant welcomed the guests! The banner was especially designed by the

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One Day Four Weeks Ago

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Ironic. The night I gave birth was the blurriest night I could remember.

December 23, 2014, 2:00 AM. I woke up to the familiar wave-like pain in my body. Wave-like because it felt like as though a wave was making its way from my back and crashing onto my abdomen. Familiar, because I’ve been feeling it for at least 12 hours. It was only after doing a lazy research that I realized it could be a sign of labor.

We got to the hospital only to have me humiliated because apparently, my cervix had been dilated to an astonishing 1 centimeter! You need to be at least 10 cm. to get on with the delivery. “Are you effing kidding me?” was all I could mumble in my head. The pain was already so damn excruciating and with a taunting grin, the student doctor told me that it was yet to worsen with every dilation. How comforting.

I was ready to be sent home under false alarm. But instead, I was informed that I had to take a couple of tests and be monitored because the baby’s heartbeat was not stable Continue reading

Our Bright Streak of Sunshine

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37 weeks and it’s a flighty mix of excitement and anxiety. The ever supportive dad-to-be captured some shots, this one being my favorite, at home just so we’ll have something to look at a few weeks from now, while we actually hold our little sunshine and see if he’s as good an acrobat as he is now in my belly. ♥

Photo by DM and taken amid Typhoon Hagupit, which hit our city but thankfully did not do much damage.

DIY Baby Shower For It’s a… Boy Oh Boy!

I’ve never attended a baby shower in my entire life, but even then I knew it’s something I wanted to throw myself. I’m one who can never resist an opportunity to go down and dirty with the DIY preparations. The baby themed invitations, giveaways, dessert table – they just keep my adrenaline going.

It was only after doing a little research that I learned that there is actually an ongoing discussion about who should be throwing the shower. Traditionally, they say, it’s the expectant mom’s friends and family who should be hosting it. But as mommy forums would prove it, 8 out of 10 moms wished they had plan the event themselves. Okay, I just made the figures up but that’s basically the popular sentiment.

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Luckily for me, I got to enjoy being part of the planning while having the necessary support, logistics and budget wise. I wanted it to be simple but with every detail well thought of. It was my dear friends
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