Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Are you...

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I know I am.

Thanks for being gentle with me.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Do tell

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Divine Pottery (inspired and created during my first pregnancy, 2000) Canon Rebel 300D

You have the gift.
Yes, you.
You have the Light of God in your very eyes.
You have the courage.
Yes, you.
You have the Power of the Divine within your very soul.

Be good to people.
But most of all
Turn away from the beckonings of darkness
Nothing but useless whispers
Nothing but idle talk


Keep your mind on the deLIGHTful that surrounds you
Open your eyes to the magical PRESENTation of everyday life
Receive it.
Give it all.
Don't hold back.
Let it go.
All of it.

It was not yours to begin with.

Trust in the Voice Within.
It is your connection to YOU...

You who are Divinity in the flesh.
You who are Love incarnate.
You who are Powerful beyond measure.


Yes, YOU.


Friday, September 23, 2005

Symptoms of Inner Peace

Tabletop Zen Garden

Be on the lookout for symptoms of inner peace. The hearts of a great many have already been exposed to inner peace and it is possible that people everywhere could come down with it in epidemic proportions. This could pose a serious threat to what has, up to now, been a fairly stable condition of conflict in the world.

Some signs and symptoms of inner peace:

A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than on fears based on past experiences.
An unmistakable ability to enjoy each moment.
A loss of interest in judging other people.
A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others.
A loss of interest in conflict.
A loss of the ability to worry. (This is a very serious symptom).
Frequent, overwhelming episodes of appreciation.
Contented feelings of connectedness with others and nature.
Frequent attacks of smiling.
An increasing tendency to let things happen rather than make them happen.
An increased susceptibility to the love extended by others as well as the uncontrollable urge to extend


From Quotable Quotes and dear
cyberpal, Leonielight

Alleanda Pineda Albano

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Andy, 7 months in utero

I had tears in my eyes
I saw your picture for the very first time
I just couldn't believe it
My very own 'baby' sister's baby
Her very own flesh and blood
Her very own heart and soul
Growing inside her bulging belly

Andy for short.

This early I can sense your sweet yet spunky spirit

Two more months and here you'll be

Will you have your mommy's smile?
Will you have your mommy's moods?!
Will you have her quiet strength
And loving sensitivity that goes on and on and on
And when you think it's not at all
Humanly possible to have any more
There she is giving it so openly and generously over and over again

Andy, you are one blessed baby
To have a mommy like the one you do
I know this because
Even though she calls me Ate (big sister)
She has mothered me in so many ways
And the beauty of it all
Is that it always comes so naturally, so gently, so lovingly
In a way only she can give
Which I believe is what will make your Mommy Leslie
The best mommy you could ever have

Your Daddy Pet will be your knight in shining armour
Ever so lovingly protective of his little princess
Giving you his words of wisdom
Teaching you things only a dad's heart can teach
I have witnessed this with my own eyes
The way he has given his heart to my own princess Oona
And treated her like his own
Oh how she loves her Tito Pet


A blessed baby indeed.

I love you already.

Butterfly kisses, my darling girl.

Tita Chiqui

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Daddy Pet and Mommy Leslie with My Baby, JoshimBall
Shangrila Mall, Manila

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

My Family

L-R top: my brother, Randy. my youngest sister, Joey. Joey's fiancé, Patrick. my brother-in-law/Leslie's hubby, TonyPet.
2nd row: my honey, Jack. our baby boy, Joshim & I. our Mom, Cora. our Dad, Bert. my pregg-w/-Andy sister, Leslie.
bottom: my niece/Randy's youngest, Martina. my princess daugter, Oona. my niece, Randy's eldest, Sandra. my prince son, Sol. Giant bear and funky hats, courtesy of The Picture Company, Podium.

"In family life, love is the oil that eases friction, the cement that binds closer together, and the music that brings harmony."

 ~Eva Burrows

Thursday, September 15, 2005


Yoga Lady/// Canon Rebel 300D

FEAR=False Experiences Appearing Real

Most of the time, I'm afraid.
I'm scared of big things.
I'm scared of little things.
I'm scared of things that seem so inconsequential it's ridiculous.
I'm even scared as I'm writing this.
Will it be taken as sensible or stupid?
Should I worry about it or not?
Why am I even worrying about it?
What's wrong with me for worrying about it too much?

I used to be so brave
Doing things I've never done
Trying things I've never tried
And in between the trying and doing
I am thinking: Okay, next!

What happened?

Now I'm wondering:
Was I ever brave in the real sense of the word
Or was I just putting up a brave front?

It's crazy.
Yes. I can be that, too.
There are voices in my head that tell me to do one thing
And within the next minute tell me the complete opposite.

I wonder if anyone feels the same way...

I am a she-wolf, brave and confident as can be
I express myself and allow the Divine to come through my words
I am brazen in my creativity and acknowledge the importance of releasing it to the world
I am a child of God and God loves me for who I am in all my imperfection

And within a second of that last statement
A voice ever so quietly whispers in my ear:
"What a load of @#!#!x!"
It is the loudest, most annoying quiet I have ever heard

I hope nobody feels the same way...

Recently, I've come across information
A very special kind of information
That promises to help me get through these fears
The dark whisperings in my head
This information does not promise to banish the fear itself
However it promises to make me stronger
So strong that the fear will become so small
Because the space that this information occupies inside me
Will have become so big

Half of me believes this to be true
The other half is stuck in the muck of my own cynicism

I wonder if anyone sees it the same way...

So I embark on yet another life experiment
As I have always been a searcher of the Truth
A life scientist if you will
In search of My Truth
It seems to be close at hand
And I am hoping this is so
Because I am getting tired of searching
And searching...and searching
For I have asked and have been promised to receive

I wonder if anyone's doing it the same way...

So I boldly declare to receive it
The Answers to my Questions
The Light to my Darkness
Wholly, fully, proudly
That I may be liberated
That I may be released
That I may breathe the air of life
That I may live my life in the Light.

I pray mightily you feel the same way.

A Billion Breaths

A Billion Violets, Subic Bay

From time to time, I come across a gem of an article that wakes me up somehow. The present, I believe, is where it's at. To live before or after that is a complete waste. If the simple act of awareness to breath can bring about a meditative "soothing effect" - heaven knows we can all have some of that in this busy, crazy world we live in - then I'm all for it. In Blessed Breath, Kat

A few years ago David Anderson, then 43, took scuba lessons while on vacation in Cozumel, Mexico. Loaded with weights, gear and the heavy air tank, he lumbered into the water and dropped like a stone towards the ocean floor. In seconds his world was restricted to two elements:

the fish coasting by and the hypnotic sound of his own breathing.

"I have taken breaths by the billions without so much as a thought," Anderson says. "Yet in that one undersea hour, I treasured every lungful."

Even today the soothing sound of listening to that breath haunts him. "Breathing is the foundation for meditation in the Western tradition," he notes adding, "I do my meditation in the morning when I get up." ...

In his book
Breakfast Epiphanies,he describes his scuba moment and asks, "Why can I not live and breathe like that on land? Respiration is the key to concentration." Any repetitive activity that gets us breathing regularly - swimming, walking, running - can have the same soothing effect. "It's the hypnotic part you're doing over and over again, " Anderson continues. "That's what gets you to the present."

Reader's Digest, May 2005

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Where do we go from here?

Twin Roofs, Boracay Island

Things just seem so petty and unimportant
When seen in the light of the recent disaster
And on the fifth anniversary of 9/11
It can't be any bleaker than this

Andrea was right when she said it.
And I thank her for sharing this link

It's just sad.
So very sad.

Many times I wonder
Where do we go from here?
Hope just seems so hard to find
The looks of fear and uncertainty in people's eyes are too hard to ignore
Either that or I'm mirroring my own

But life goes on
As it always does
And after crying tears of sympathy
After giving what I can
I find myself back in my daily routine

Of taking care of the home
Of taking care of my own

If only a bit more grateful
That we are where we are
And a bit more responsible
For what I have here and now

Peace and Blessings

Saturday, September 10, 2005

All Things In Moderation

Marina, Subic Bay. Canon Rebel 300D

You cannot care about everything and stay sane. You cannot care about nothing and stay human. ~Katherine Whitehorn, Reader's Digest, May 2005

Friday, September 09, 2005

iKat 101's Maiden Voyage

Smiley Face by Oona, Age 2

I started another blog.

It's called iKat 101

Having lots of fun with it.

Of course you already know of Munchsters, Inc., right?


Sunday, September 04, 2005

Happy drips, happy Mom, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Happy Birthday, Sol!

It's my eldest son's birthday.
He turns five today.

Five. What a big number.
He's growing so fast.

I used to not understand parents
When they said this.
But it's so true.
Once you have children
Everything seems to move at lightspeed.
My days are a blur sometimes
And I am in constant need
Of things, activities, people
To remind me to b r e a t h e
To relax and take in the process
To actually relish and enjoy it.

And there are no better individuals
Than one's own kids
To do just that.

Case in point:
It was one of those tough days
I was at the end of my rope
The kids needed to get tucked in bed
Not too long after one just finished demanding for his milk
Another asks for water
Then just when I think that's that
Another asks for a lullaby
And in my fowl, exhausted mood
This was the last thing I wanted to do
But I have learned that when it comes to such requests
There is nothing better to do but oblige

So there I was
Singing Hush Little Baby through gritted teeth
When his voice, sweet and calm and so grown up, pierced my heart:
It's okay, Mommy. You don't need to finish the lullaby
You need to rest. You look tired.
Love you, Mom. Goodnight.

Just like that.

I gave him a thank you kiss
and tried hard not to let my happy drips (his own phrase for his mom's "tears of joy")
fall on his angelic face.

It may have been my awful singing that night
But the way I know my son
That came from his thoughtful and caring tiny heart
Which is so capable of love that is nothing at all tiny.

Happy Birthday, Big Guy.
Mommy loves big as the whole Universe, Galaxy
And yes, bigger than Boracay, too!

Solomon Joshua Azimi, The Picture Company, Manila

Friday, September 02, 2005

Grumble, Mumble...STUMBLE

Hampton Gardens, my view from the roofdeck Canon Rebel 300D

It's inevitable. There will be good days and there will be bad days.
No matter how prepared, organized, perfectly planned we may be
There will be times when things will go wrong.

I admit, I am a grumbler.
It comes so naturally to me to find fault in things
If there's something that needs improving
Count on me to find what it is
Something not fixed
I will gladly point that out, too.
Too big, too small (the homes)
Too quiet, too noisy (being single, being married)
Too hot, too cold (the continents)
Too fast, too slow, too little, too much...

Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

My husband, on the other hand
Is such a laid back, "relax, honey...this too shall pass".. kind of guy
Thanking circumstances whether they be up or down, good or bad
(Opposites do attract!)
And it used to annoy me no end when he'd do his thing
Because in my mind, all I could think of was: how could you!
How could you just sit there when there's so much to be done
It's not perfect yet, can't you see?
And this would play over and over and over again in my head
Until I've worked myself into a frenzy
And end up losing hair over it

I started this blog a year ago and called it The Breathing Room
For a reason
See when I grumble and complain and criticize
It's like holding my breath
I hold it and hold it and hold it some more
Until I'm about ready to explode
And most times I do
And those times I don't
I implode
Both ways, not good ways

Then one day, I simply got tired of it
All the grumbling was driving me crazy
And so I prayed.

I prayed hard for God to take away my ungrateful heart
And replace it with something better
As always, The Divine came through for me:
W R I T E.
About what, I asked?
G R A T I T U D E.
I considered it, played around with it, experimented with it
For one whole year I toyed with the idea that this may be the answer
Cynic that I was, I had to try it for size
It could all be a bunch of crappy pollyana for all I know

Well, it's been over a year of TBR
It's been a year of experimenting with a more grateful attitude
And guess what, all I can say is:
I A M G R A T E F U L.
Having a grateful attitude (and writing about it) helped me in countless ways
I don't even know where to begin telling
It's still tempting to get stuck in the grumbling mindset
Old habits die hard
But if there's one thing that God has done in my life
It's letting me die over and over again
Oh, let me just say I've died a hundred deaths
(I have a very stubborn spirit!)

I died when I left my home
I died when I could no longer have my old lifestyle of being single
I died when I had children to take care of
I died when I had to learn to do housework

Over and over again, I died

But the miracle is this:
I may have died unto my old self
But it was the ingredient for me to get ready
for my new life
And I can say in faith
That this new life granted to me by grace
Is much, MUCH better

For this I am deeply grateful.
And this time, it is not merely experimental
I have seen the proof of its effectivity
When I focus on the amazing things about my kids
Instead of the one bad thing that just happened
No matter how dirty, clumsy and how much work it requires
I am better for it
When I focus on the wonderful things about my relationships
Instead of me complaining about the bad thing
No matter how painful and "not-my-way-of-doing-things"
I am better for it
When I focus on the blessed things about my surroundings
Instead of looking at the missing parts, dirty parts, imperfect parts
No matter how uncomfortable they may seem
I am better for it

Now I do realize it's not wise to be a doormat
Nor be passive when things are really getting out of hand
But most times I just want to give in to my old nature
To critique, to complain, to grumble-mumble...stumble!
(Which is exactly what it results in: a lot of stumbles)

I now allow something bigger than myself
To operate in my life
I now allow something more knowleageable
To decide and I surrender to that knowing
I now allow Someone absolutely powerful
To take hold of my circumstance
Because heaven knows I simply cannot do it alone.

Not now, not later
Not ever.

Oh yes, I still grumble.
You bet, I still mumble.
I'm still human after all.
But within a moment of my blah-blah-blahs
I throw in a song of praise out loud
Or a quiet prayer in my heart
And miraculously, the grumbles have a way
Of disappearing shortly after that.

On that note, may I just give thanks to the following:

My kids for teaching me patience
My husband for showing me shukur everyday
My Comforter, HS, for guiding me all the way.
You, my friend, for reading this piece.
To Blogger for making The Breathing Room possible.

And a big THANK YOU, ZOEYGAL...for introducing me to the great J influences in my life:Joyce and JC!

Thank you.

Bless you.

"'Be thankful and GIVE THANKS' are two different things. We need to say it to people, in whatever circumstance. Be grateful in everything. Drop a note...make a call...send a card...say it, say it, say it. Fast. It encourages people, it creates better situations, it blesses and magnifies the positive in things. Make the good things in your life bigger than the bad things." ~ Joyce Meyer (paraphrased)