Sunday, December 31, 2006

NYE Dinner

My speciality I guess, Paella. Suddenly realised we didn't have anything special planned for tonight so I thought of doing this dish.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Year 2006

Its nearly the end of the year, so its time to take a short stroll down memory lane to see what we have been up to this year:

For Bianca, she started going to school and really stood out in class not only for her reading and writing skills, but her helpful attitude towards her peers and teachers. She's recieved a few awards, got really good marks/ comments from the teachers, and managed to speak and perform in front of the whole school with no obvious stage fright. Needless to say, she's given us a lot of proud parenting moments. This year we also started the 'girls day' routine that was always the highlight of our week. And it doesn't have to be an elaborate combination of activities like shopping or visiting new places to make her happy. Once we just shared some ice cream in front of the TV at home and that made her day! Obviously, quality time with her is the best way to make her feel loved and happy.

For Nico, he has grown up so much physically and mentally. Although many mistake him for a baby due to his size, he certainly makes up for it with his climbing, running and jumping abilities. He can even kick a ball around with so much ease I wonder if this was because of his exposure to the many games we watched on TV and live in the stadium. He has also made leaps and bounds regarding his reading and writing abilities. He's even begun to add numbers in his mind! He also makes us laugh a lot of times with his cheekiness and his own brand of humor. He has made so much progress in the toilet training department, he's begun to wear 'jocks' all day now.

For Chaz, work has given him the challenge of becoming a team leader early this year. It wasn't always easy managing peoples moods and balancing the resources, but he's done a pretty good job. On the home front, he's found his way around the kitchen a lot of times due to the cooking shows that continue to inspire him to experiment. Among the successful attempts are: pancit bihon, sushi, crispy roast pork, rack of lamb, and lots more. He was also seriously taken by the soccer bug, cheering on the socceroos on TV and even taking in some live games with or without the family. He even managed to watch a U2 concert with a friend on his first night out without the family! I'm sure that will be a highlight of this year for him.

For me, apart from looking after all three kids mentioned above ;-), I also took an interest in gardening. I liked digging in the dirt, taking out the weeds , and planting new ones. I can't say it was all success as the unusually dry weather and water restrictions killed some of the plants that I planted myself. However, a few plants did survive and even thrive despite these conditions. On the kitchen front, I also managed to find that elusive recipe for garlic prawns that I've tried in a number of cafes here in Adelaide. Thank goodness for a TV cooking show (The Cook and the Chef on SBS) , I was able to cook and serve this favourite dish of mine to my family and friends on Xmas day. On the hobby front, scrapbooking took a backseat this year. However, I did discover blogging which is essentially the same thing, putting memories down for future generations, right? Lastly, a recent and unexpected development was that I started working again a few weeks ago. Its back into an IT position on a part-time basis, filling in for people who are on holidays until next month. Funny thing is that this came just when I thought my IT skills were passé and was planning to do a big career change into education or childcare. Life does not always goes as planned, someone up there must have had other plans for me.

All up, our family has had an eventful year in 2006. We have a lot to be grateful for, a happy and healthy family first and foremost. We managed to spend a lot of quality time together as a family, not to mention with the old and new friends that made the past 12 months quite enjoyable.

Classic Pinoy Fried Fish

It turned out rather well if I do say so myself. :-)

Tonight's Dinner

We went to the market today. I couldn't help myself and I bought a nice fresh fish. Problem is I forgot to have it cleaned so I'm doing it myself. Thank goodness for the internet otherwise I wouldn't know how to begin!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Return of the Wasp

Well, I thought I got rid of the wasps we had the last time. Unfortunately, they're back and they announced themselves in the worst way possible. Our little daughter accidently brushed against a new hive at the side of our house and she got stung by one of the wasps. She was screaming her lungs out as she held out her finger. We quickly got her some ice and meds ( clarytine and ibuprofen ) and got her to calm down. Good thing that there was hardly any swelling and right now she's all better. It was quite the shock to suddenly hear her screaming like that.

If I had a flamethrower I'd have put those wasps to the torch! But all I had was the house hold grade insect spray from the last time I did battle with them so I doused those little nasties again. Hopefully that's the last of that but I think they'll be back.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Christmas Aftermath...

Ah, finally a little more breathing space. Christmas morning came and went, the kids opened up their presents in record time, so fast in fact that the girl was wondering if there were more gifts to open when they tore through the presents they had under the tree. We got them a small aquarium and Santa gave a doll house for the girl and a set of Wiggle's toys for the little boy. They also had fun with the presents from the grandparents and it was nice that they had something to open up from the lolos and lolas.

It's been a hectic few days in the house. We were sort of cleaning up the past weekend, getting ready for a little get together. We invited our friends over to spend Christmas day here and we sort of planned a whole day thing. We started with lunch and ended close to midnight already. As usual, there was lots of food, lots of laughs and good converstation. Surprisngly, no alcohol consumed and still a good time was had by all.

We already went to church the night before so after opening the presents, we got ready to prepare for lunch. In the end we prepared so much food: steaks, potato salad, garlic prawns, leche flan, crema de fruta that we were bursting from the seams after lunch. Our friends even prepared pancit bihon as well so there so much food already. We then had more guests arrive for merienda and dinner so I made sushi to top up the food. It was so much like a typical Christmas get-together that so much food almost seemed normal.

It was great to have our friends around for Christmas, tiring but great. Because we don't have family here, having good friends to share the holidays is always a blessing. I can remember the past few Christmases that we'd spend just with the kids and ourselves and although it was still fun and brought us closer, there's always something to be said about having good friends and a bigger family around you during the holidays.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas 2006

Merry Christmas everyone! Hope you have a good day today, I know our kids will surely have one.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Christmas Rush

I normally try to post something at least once a week but I have to admit the Christmas rush has got the better of my blogging. It all comes one after the other: start of school holidays, Christmas, work etc.

The start to this weekend has been busy as well with us getting our house ready for a small get-together with friends, plus gift wrapping and just general Christmas rushing. I'm bushed... can't wait to get some time off.

At any rate, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all. I'll talk to you guys soon.

Friday, December 15, 2006

All I Want For Christmas...

Is my tooth! Our little girl has lost her first baby tooth today! Last week we noticed that she already had a tooth growing behind her two front baby teeth. For the past few days her front teeth have become wobblier and wobblier. She was so excited about losing her teeth that she helped it along by constantly moving the teeth with her tongue! Just a few minutes ago the first of her front teeth popped out and she got very excited about sending it off to the tooth fairy!

Another milestone reached, and I feel so old. ;)

Monday, December 11, 2006


As requested by my bro, here's my daugther's (current) playlist:

  • Do-Re-Mi|Maria & The Children|The Sound Of Music
  • My Favorite Things|Maria|The Sound Of Music
  • Together In Electric Dreams (Extended Version)|The Human League|The Human League - Original Remixes & Rarities
  • Up, Down, And Touch The Ground|Disney|The Best Of Pooh And Tigger, Too
  • The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers|Disney|The Best Of Pooh And Tigger, Too
  • Yellow Submarine|Johnny Dawson with The Bayside Kids|The Beatles For Kids
  • Hello Goodbye|Johnny Dawson with The Bayside Kids|The Beatles For Kids
  • All for You (Full Band Version)|Sister Hazel|Somewhere More Familiar
  • Upside Down|Jack Johnson|Sing-a-Longs and Lullabies for the Film Curious George
  • The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)|David LaMotte|S.S. Bathtub: Songs for Kids and Their Grownups
  • Seasons Of Love|Original Broadway Cast|Rent: Original Broadway Cast Recording (Disc 2)
  • L.O.V.E.|Hi-5|Jump And Jive With Hi-5
  • Pizza, Pizza, Pizza|Hi-5|It's A Party
  • North South East And West|Hi-5|It's A Party
  • Off to the library|Justine Clarke|I like to Sing
  • Hop Hippity Hop|Justine Clarke|I like to Sing
  • The Gumtree Family|Justine Clarke|I like to Sing
  • Dancing face|Justine Clarke|I like to Sing
  • I like to sing|Justine Clarke|I like to Sing
  • I Like to Move It|Madagascar 5|I Like to Move It - The Hit Album
  • Hey Julie|Fountains of Wayne|Hey Julie - Single
  • Jump N' Move|The Brand New Heavies Featuring Jamalski|Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1
  • Good Times|Edie Brickell|Crossover Classics
  • Catch My Disease|Ben Lee|Awake Is the New Sleep
  • Hey Mr. Dj|Active Kidz|Active Kidz
  • Sunday, December 03, 2006

    I can't sleep ....

    Tonight, I was trying to convince the little boy to sleep a little early than usual because he has a fever. I got the room lighting dimmed, played soft music and lay in bed with him hoping he would sleep soon. After a while, he was still awake, tossing and turning in bed. I told him to just "close your eyes and go to sleep". In all innocence he replied, "I can't close my eyes mommy .... it's too dark!".

    Friday, December 01, 2006

    Boys Day Out

    My wife and daughter often have their "girls days" so last weekend, I decided to take our boy out just for a little "boys day" of our own. The truth is that our little girl wasn't feeling very well as she had tonsillitis and because I had errands to run that day I took our boy out so he wouldn't have to be cooped in the house.

    We left the girls at home and set off to do our errands. It was pretty enjoyable for him as it wasn't always that I'd take him out alone. It's always either with his sister or with his mom. Anyway, he's really coming into his own nowadays. He's developing a personality and he's quite assertive. He likes to be told what the plans are and what we were going to do first and next and he get's a bit upset when things don't go according to plan.

    This day I told him we were going first to the post office, then the shops then to one of our favourite ( well at least mine ) stores, Officeworks. He was quite happy when we started out, I even asked him to remember a couple of things that we were supposed to buy at the shops. He got his hand stamped at the post office and he even remembered what we needed to get at the shops as well.

    On the way to Officeworks, I thought I'd stop by a car parts shop next to it. This was when all heck broke loose! He kept saying "Not a good idea, Daddy, we go to Officeworks!" He then started crying and the tears started streaming down his face as he kept insisting on going out of the car shop and into the Officeworks next door. He pulled and tugged and despite my best efforts to try and pacify him I resignedly trooped out of the store with him. Funny thing was, as soon as we stepped out of the door, he suddenly stopped crying, wiped his face and said "See, Officeworks. Good idea!"

    Yup, that's our boy. I fall for it every time... :)