This week had been a tragic one for our family. Our beloved chocolate Labrador - Marley - passed away yesterday. We are devastated; to quote my Facebook post, Marley took a piece of my heart when he went to dog heaven. Any fur parent would understand the loneliness that follows the death of a beloved furry family member.
Our family still strongly advocates pet ownership, though. The kids learn to be more responsible as they take care of a smaller being. The pets, in turn, shower the family with all the love that they are able to give.
Here in the Philippines, PAWS or the Philippine Animal Welfare Society not only shelters animals but offers a chance for Pinoys to become fur parents. So if you've never been one, how about giving it a serious thought this time?
But, of course, there is a process.
Filipinos are known for their unique courtship customs. You have probably heard of pamamanhikan (asking for a girl's hand in marriage), harana (serenading), and even the more physical aspects of winning a woman's family's favor by chopping firewood and pag-iigib (fetching water).
But how would these play out in our contemporary world? This is what Ang Kapilya Sa Dalampasigan (currently #40 in Wattpad under the Filipino category) is all about. It's not too traditional but not flagrant either.
So what is this Wattpad story all about?
Balikbayan is a Pinoy term that literally means return to one's country. And when a balikbayan comes home (whether for a vacation or for good), the whole clan just comes to life!
Our family spent a whole month with my mom who recently took a vacay from the States. This is why this blog was a bit quiet that entire time. We froze all our activities, even our businesses to have some quality time with my mother. We also spent our time visiting other relatives, eating out, pigging out, picnicking, raiding buffets, and practically everything else involving food. So, what else is so exciting about welcoming a balikbayan back?
Mahilig kumain ang mga Pinoy. This is a statement. It's not a question, it's not even an opinion. This is an unspoken truth that is accepted by every true blue Filipino. And while the whole nation is going crazy over the movie, The Hows of Us, I am trying to answer here an equally pertinent question --
Why do we, Filipinos, just love to eat?
Have you ever visited the Ili-Likha Artist Village in Baguio City? I just remembered Baguio today coz the weather was so hot. Plus the National Heroes Day fever hasn't died down yet. The kids and I then recalled that wooden sculpture of the national hero but this one was so different from those that we've ever seen.
Here's what we saw --
Gosh, it's been days and Sarah Geronimo's Miss Granny remake is still raking in millions at the box office. You know what's great about this film (I have just read reviews but have yet to watch it)?
Celebrate Pilipinas! One of our own won a bronze medal - the first one there is for the Wushu team and the third one for the Philippine team - on the recent Asian Games. Congratulations to Agatha Wong who hails from the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde.
But have you ever wondered what Taijiquan and Wushu are? And why are they uber cool?
I recently saw these handicrafts at Glorietta in Makati. I didn't have a decent camera phone then so I asked my sister to shoot the images above. Mangyan crafts are so cool.
Here are the reasons why...
Those who study in any of the universities at the so-called University Belt do not just know where Recto is but also what it is there for.
Recto is a place of contradictions. It can give you super low prices for the second-hand college books that they sell. And they do sell a lot - like a lot! The entire street is filled with lines upon lines and towers upon towers of pre-loved books. You can find books on chemistry, biology, accountancy, management, finance, law, even novels.
I remember buying some of my Stephen King novels there back in the day also my Sweet Dreams and Sweet Valley High novels.
Recto is a place of contradictions.
The school season is about to begin soon, I'm pretty sure mommies are looking for ways to save some money when shopping for their kids' school needs especially their uniforms and school supplies.
Divisoria is one such area. You go there and it's the one-stop-shop for these needs. The prices are, of course, affordable which is why many would still flock there during Christmas (to buy cheap gifts for their inaanaks), weddings (this is also one of the hottest spots to shop for bridal entourage dresses and suits), and during school season. But, without a doubt, a huge chunk of those who go there to shop are businessmen (and women).
These entrepreneurial Pinoys brave the heat of the sun, the palit-mukha (crowded) streets, and even a possible snatching incident (hold on to those wallets and bags, ladies, this is a glaring truth that I am so ashamed to even mention).
But, hey, Divisoria is not just your physical Divisoria anymore...
E.S. Villamor has made a career in writing for a decade now. Her online business - GIML (Gabriela Isabel & Miguel Lucas) Publishing started in 2014. She advocated for women's rights and was once enamored with imparting financial literacy through training and blogs but she is now focused on propagating all things Filipino. This site is also being groomed as a rich homeschooling resource.