Tuesday, July 29, 2008

i'm lovin' it - the beginning.

i'm lovin' it - part one.

okay, i've made it pretty clear to almost everyone who has met me that i had NO LOVE for the city that i live in.

LOS ANGELES, a county full of people who aspire mostly to get into the entertainment industry - do that very thing - just act. a lot of people are very superficial. pure vanity. glamour, ghetto, gangsta, gorgeousness all in one place. traffic is everywhere and everything is expensive (especially homes). loud mariachi music at midnight, grafitti, it's clean where the rich people live, but so dirty where "normal" people live. see, i live in the area of LA that is not shown in tv...and i'm sorry to say but it ain't all that at all.

but because i also lived in chicago for 6 months, i've come to realize that none can compare to this city. don't get me wrong - i love the seasons and change of seasons in the mid west but i dread the winter. this land of almost eternal sunshine makes sense as to why people choose to move out here even when it's so expensive. people come here from far & near to pursue a career in acting/film industry/music/waitressing :) ...none of which i have to desire to do. hollyhood - it is a land of dreams.

so why am i here?

the answer to that question i still don't know.

my one guess is because i am a dreamer and i fit in perfe
ctly well with the rest of the dreamers out here. but it's not a film or acting career that i dream about (although i do wish i could sing & get a star one day), but my dream is to love & help people, change cities, the nations and change the world. (in that specific order - world domination of love - just like Jesus did).

so i think He knew what He was doing when He called m
e to go back here. what a better place to be, than to be put right smack dab into the melting pot of all the nations - Lala Land, California.

do i want to be here? nope. but i have been called. and i do know of Him who asked me to be here...so i choose to obey.

even in the deepest part of my heart - obey. stop grumbling and complaining about LA. stop b****ing about the place and embrace it. and be glad that i was called to come back "home".

so i will, ofcourse blog about it. and instead of hatin' on it - i will find reasons on why i love to live here. and i will be posting it up, as a reminder for me - that He has called me here to fulfill His dreams in my heart, so i must embrace it, i must OWN it.

so i'm going to do the "lovin' it" series...posting up pictures, places, experiences, etc. here and there of why i love Los Angeles. i will try new things and also re-discover old places. and i will take YOU along in my journey, so come and experience a new found love for LA with me.


I LOVE LOS ANGELES BECAUSE OF.....

MY CHURCH
it may not be the biggest church. in fact i will even say that it probably isn't the best church. but it is my home church. i love the building, i love the smell of coffee when i walk in. i love the fact that i know who's kid is running around screaming at the top of his lungs because i know almost everyone there (but there are definitely a lot of new faces). i love that i used to work here and so i know where everything is. i love the location and that there's a starbucks right across the street. but most especially i love the people. beautiful friendships & relationships were made here. we have gone through A LOT. a lot of fun but also a lot of pain. and because of that - we became stronger, we became a family. we have a great leadership, awesome worship & wonderful people who are gifted with so many talents. in fact my whole family goes here - so its like a reunion for us every sunday. and this is where my sister met her husband - so i gained a brother because of this church. (i can write a whole blog about this and i probably will in the near future). so if you find yourself looking for a church & you're in the LA area, you should come visit sometime.


ALMOST ETERNAL SUNSHINE
Mostly sunny all year round except for an occasional "rainstorm" (more like drizzle). although in the summer it can get scorching hot, i like this way better than negative 10 degrees winter storms. our winters here are super cold if it's 40 degrees. yes, people pay MUCH to experience the beautiful weather out here in LA.



PORTOS
one word can make hundreds of mouths salivate. if you've never been, i say you MUST. its a cuban restaurant with very very yummy food. everything is oh-so-good here but everybody's favorite the are cheese rolls, potato balls and their cakes. my blog and these pictures will not do it justice. you must try it. oh yeah, anna, portos misses you too. website


DISNEYLAND
it is ofcourse, the happiest place on earth. it makes me feel good to know that it's just "there". i haven't been in over 4 years, but this year i want to take chino once again. i want him to enjoy it now coz he was too young when we first went there. now i must save up for it. hopefully by december we can go.



THE BEACHES
from hermosa, to zuma, to venice, to malibu and santa monica, i love love love that there are beaches a few minutes away. it is a place of solace for me. a place for fun, laughter, memories. i used to hate the beaches here after growing up in the islands, but after living in the midwest, i'm loving every chance i get to feel the sand between my toes.

okay. that's enough for part one. watch out for parts 2, 3, 4 or however many more i will be putting up here, to serve as a reminder for me that God has put me here in the City of Angels, to live out a part of His dream.

*photos used for this blog are not mine...they were taken from random websites.

Monday, July 28, 2008

pray for the laurie family.

I don't know him personally but Greg Laurie is a very prominent preacher and pastor here in Southern California/America. Please say a prayer for the comfort of their family during this time of grief.

lose it.

Okay, the time has come for me to be honest with myself and the world. I need to exercise and lose weight.

I know it sounds so cliche but please hear me out before you shake your head in disapproval and chuckle in disbelief. No, this is not some random girly saying, but a real concern.

i used to be really good at this (exercise), especially when i had joined the gym in chicago. i do well when i go to the gym, coz it motivates me since i spend so much. but right now i can't afford to even sign up for the gym, so since i came back here to LA, i haven't really made time for exercise.

it's been 7 months now since i last exercised. yuck :( and no, i'm not obese. but i do know that i'm overweight for my height. and it concerns me more because i lost my gall bladder last 2001, which causes people to pack on pounds even more, because of the lack of production of bile. i feel chest pains from time to time, and i can feel me breathe heavy when i climb the stairs. so sad. so unhealthy. so i know i should keep myself healthy. i know that i am His temple.

so why the delay? because of
laziness. and that is no excuse.

but today is a
new day. and i will shake the laziness off and start taking care of myself.

why? because:
1. i want to be healthy
2. i want to be a good example to my son
3. lower cholesterol, lower chances of heart attacks - which is the #1 killer for women
4. so i can fit in my old clothes
5. so i will be faithful to take care of this body He's given
6. so i can keep up with chino when playing sports with him

and of course i decided to blog about my new decision. my inspiration? paul dario. check out his blogs.

my target weight is between 115 to 120. i was 110 before i had chino and i came back to that even after i had him. then i moved to the states and i never went back that weight again. (darn american food & big servings). i need to lose at least 20lbs. coz i am about 20 lbs over my target weight.

i will now make it a PRIORITY to exercise - atleast 3x or 4x a week. pilates, walking, jogging, dancing - whatever. just as long as i move constantly for 30 minutes or more.

i will do strength training - even if i cant afford the gym. i will do push ups and carry my weight.

i will watch what i eat. i will try to eat more vegetables and less sugar.

i will try my best to stay away from the donut & chocolates & 2nd servings & 3rd servings.

i will keep my coffee down to 2 cups a day at the most.

you, dear reader, i ask: please keep me accountable. check on me. ask me how i'm doing in this area. you can be my internet physical trainer.

i'm hoping that letting the world know will keep me motivated and challenged to keep on.

so here i go.



Friday, July 25, 2008

pregnant with dreams.

almost 6 years ago, i came back here to the land i grew up in (and hated) with a dream in my heart to be able to go back to school. i was really hoping back then, that i'd be able to get into the school of campus ministry here in los angeles. this God-given desire to teach & preach God's Word has been burning in my heart since i've succumbed to the thought of it. (another blog will be written on how i hated the very thought of it before). much to my disbelief, i was told by some of our church leaders that i could not go into the school here because i was a single mom (ofcourse a bunch of other reasons were given, but that was the bottom line). it wasn't told to me once but twice. i was told not to even try to apply, because once the dean found out that i was a single mom - he wouldn't let me enroll.

yes, leaders of the church did that. and what they said really broke my heart. i thought that i was partly insane for feeling so strongly about these dreams. and so i let that dream die. several thoughts and feelings washed over me during the process of trying to figure it out - sadness, anger, hopelessness, mistrust - with me, with leaders, with my desires and even with God. thinking that i didn't hear from God, i put those dreams aside and i let the thought of my current situation and problems cripple me into thinking that i wasn't good enough to do the very dreams that i believe He had put in me.

There were many reasons on why i believe God had allowed that to happen and there were many lessons learned in the process of going through that time. one was for me to choose to forgive people, instead of holding it against them, because people make mistakes, just like me. in fact i say thank you to those very people. because i know that even if the reasoning was wrong, God knew that during that time, i wasn't ready just yet. another lesson learned was not to allow external circumstances to stop me from walking out in faith. because i am commanded to walk by faith and not by sight. if He chose to awaken the dream inside of me then He will be the one to lead me to the necessary steps to walk into that path, in His time. i have also learned the most important thing that i could - to learn to trust God above anything or anyone. not to put my hopes in man, in leaders, in dreams, and even an institution. not to say that i go around in mistrust, but i have learned that at the end of the day, the only anchor that my soul should rest on is God.

it's been almost 5 years after i've been told the NO - and this is how i know that this dream is God given. i feel that it just continues to grow and grow inside of me - like a baby waiting to be delivered.

when you're pregnant - usually the first & second trimesters you don't do much but wait for your belly to grow. you get excited when it moves a little, but you know that you've still got a long way to go before it comes. but on the third trimester and especially on the last month - you're big, you're heavy and you're about ready to pop. most of the time, unless told to have bed rest, the doctors recommend that you do whatever is necessary to help you in the process of giving birth. you cannot afford to just sit there - you walk, you move around, you speak to your belly, you buy the stuff that's needed to welcome the arrival...you do what you can do...because you know that anytime, it's going to happen. contractions happen - you start to feel pain all around. and it's extremely uncomfortable. you fight the pain with all your might, knowing that it's worth it to see your baby delivered. and it is.

anytime soon - it's going to happen. so i do what i can. i have been reading books here and there on learning how to speak in public and how to write. although not formal teaching like i wish i could have, the books i read give me some information that i can use.

i know its time for me to step out in faith and do what i can to see that after the process of conceiving the dream, i have been carrying it around in me and i am now big & about ready to explode. and i will labor till i see it delivered. and i know that's only the beginning, because right before my very eyes, i will see this dream grow and grow - from one generation to the next - to help people find and know Him who is Love & Truth and because of that, i will have done my part to help change this world.



Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Christian's 8th bitrhday party pictures.

i posted pictures of his birthday party - ies.

we had so much fun with swimming and laser tag.

click on link below to see them. thanks!

---> 8th birthday party pictures <---

Monday, July 21, 2008

eight.

you're eight.

my gosh. i feel like time flies so fast. 8 years a
nd nine months ago, i was this naive person who was ecstatic and scared at the same time about the thought of having you. and knowing full well i was going to be a single mom the very first month you were in my womb, made me even more anxious. who would've known back then that God would bless me with you, one of the most obedient, funniest, sweetest, but oh-so-energetic child on earth. (i'm partly biased coz i'm your mom, but i'm sure anyone who really knows you will say the same thing). sometimes i sit in wonder why God chose me to have the awesome privilege in being your mother. God is so good to me - i'm extremely thankful & grateful for it.

you've grown. growing faster than i want you to.
from keeping me up all night with your colicky nightmares, to being there when you took your first steps using the same walker that i learned to walk in when i was one. from riding your first bike without training wheels at 3 and a half (i was so scared coz you were going so fast!) to teaching you myself to read and add and subtract. and now, you're 8 and entering 3rd grade this next school year.

can i tell you how much i love teaching you while we do home school. it's been 3 years...going on 4. i'm so excited to continue to be your "teacher". you pick things up easily... and on days when i don't pay enough attention, you never fail to remind me that next to God, you are the most important thing that i should concentrate on. thank you for that.

you're smart. very witty and fast with your co
mments. i wonder who you got that from? ;) sometimes i have to watch myself in the way i talk and act, coz i see you're starting to pick up mommy's habits - like being super sarcastic with people - including me.

you already have crushes. in fact a lot of them. and i find it so cute and adorable when you tell me their names and tell me why you think they are pretty. (they are mostly all blond of course - we had it settled when you were 3 that you seem to have a preference for blonds when you stared at denise richards while i was watching tv). at 7, you asked God if one of your specific crushes could be the "one" He wants you to marry. i couldn't help but smile inside, as i taught you the valuable lesson of treating women like sisters. i wonder if i will still find it cute and adorable when you visit me one day with a lady in your hand as you tell me "you've found the right one".


for an 8 year old, you sure started having peach fuzzies early (lil hairs on top of your mouth). you're not as tall as you hope to be, but what you lack in height, you seem to be making up for it in being very agile and quick minded. you loves sports, so much more than i ever thought you would. and you excel in most sports that you try. you play your best with a team and you are never selfish to let others take the spotlight (even if you looove being in the spotlight yourself).

you like chillin' with your friends but you also love hanging out with mine. you seem to have this certain charisma about you - as if God gave you a double portion of the gift He gave me for being a people person & loving being with people. you don't even
need to try hard. your presence around others just makes them want to smile. you love hangin' out with family the mostest, though. kubie seems to be your favorite aunt, even if you do fight a lot.

you are a little warrior, no doubt about that. you like swords and battles and adventures. you try to be the best gentleman that you can be, but also love to fart, do gross or crazy things and do a lot of "boy stuff" - like skipping showers as long as you can, thinking i don't notice it, when i'm actually counting the days that your towel remains dry. but despite the "boyish-ness", you have this sensitivity about you, that i pray i and the rest of the world would learn to have. your pure & tender heart has taught me the important lesson of believing the best in people & situations always. you hardly ever say anything mean... and w
hen you know you're "sinning against God" you are not ashamed to tell me to pray for you and ask forgiveness from Him.

for someone who didn't grow up with an earthly father, i am amazed to see you turn out to be such a wonderful little man. the One who has been your Father since the day you were born, is very faithful to mold and shape you into His image at such a very young age. if there is a Man who you should learn to emulate, it would be Him,
your Daddy Jesus. last year you said you wanted to be a carpenter when you grow up, just like He was. i KNOW He's proud to have a son like you who's wanting to walk in His footsteps. i pray that you never lose the child-like faith, even as you grow older. i only wish that one day, if and when the chance comes that you get to meet your earthly father and their family, you would be the example of showing forgiveness and love, and still see the best in everyone who has chosen to, at this time, not make you an intricate part of their lives.

you have taught me a lot. you're the reason why i love being a mother. my very first ministry. in fact, you know that i want to adopt k
ids if i don't get married...just because i had such a wonderful experience in raising you. i'm only hoping that they will learn to be as loving & as obedient as their "kuya". you want siblings yourself and have been very vocal about it for almost 2 years now. but you've been very patient to wait on God to give you playmates. i admire that you are learning the art of waiting on God at such an early age.

you're 8. there are days when it seems like you need me less and less, as it has been happening these past few months. and i'm trying to be so brave to learn to let go of holding your hand, as you explore your world without me beside you. i have to teach myself to look the other way at times, especially when i know you're about to do things that will hurt you, so that you can learn the necessary lessons that you will need to use for the rest of your life.

thank you for teaching me so many things. your laugh teaches me to be free, your hugs teach me that there still is a safe place in this world. your curiosity teaches me that there is so much more to this world that what i think i know. your adventurous spirit has taught me to go beyond my limits. your love has taught me how to live.

thank you for keeping up with me for the past 8 years. i am so proud of you. i love celebrating your birthdays. it serves as a reminder of how blessed i am to have such a wonderful son. it is an honor to be your mother and i'm looking forward to spending many more wonderful-crazy-funny-love filled years with you.

i love you and happy birthday!

love,


Saturday, July 12, 2008

flooding.

i am in the process right now of transfering all my old blogs here to blogger and on my multiply site. (i love how multiply cross-posts to blogger).

so i apologize to you all for flooding you with my thoughts. the old blogs will have *dates* beside their titles.

i am also enjoying the process of reading my old blogs. it amuses me to see how far I've grown in some areas...and how semi-stagnant i have been in others. it poses as a challenge for me grow and admire...to see the wonderful journey that is my life. and it gets more beautiful each day that passes by.

im really excited that one day...i will be able to gather all these random thoughts together and put them in my book.

i know it will happen.

but as for now...there will be MORE FLOODING to come in the next few days. haha :)

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

blogs from the past

i've done everything i needed to do at work today. yippee! i'm just waiting for my boss to arrive coz without her i cannot do what im supposed to do next.

so i decided to do something productive with my time...

and transfer all my old blogs from xanga written years ago to this site..and my blogger
site. then i will shut my xanga site down.

so the blogs that are from xanga will have the *date* it was written beside its title. i will also put a comment before or after if i feel it's necessary.

i was reading through the old blog. some stories made me smile. some brought me back to the pain. some made me laugh coz i didn't realize how pathetic certain things were. it's funny to see what a roller coaster adventure God has taken me through these past years.

I'm not insane, i promise. i was just going through a lot of mixed emotions :)

sit back, relax and enjoy "the blog from the past" ride.


fly kicks.

last month a friend of mine had called me saying that she had a gift for my son & that i should pass by the house (where i now live), to go get it. that same week was the week of the NBA finals. needless to say, i got caught up in watching the finals that i didn't pick it up right away.

when i did. i was shocked - and of course i cried like i always do. my son got the nicest pair of shoes ever. she had bought chino the jordan xx3 and a shirt & shorts to go along with it. i was bewildered as to how she found out that he had basketball this summer. apparently chino had invited her & everyone else to watch his basketball games and that's where she got the idea (i think it was divinely inspired).

if you know my son, you know he's just like me - always inviting people - anywhere & everywhere.

in all of my son's *almost* 8 years, he's really only had 6 new pairs of shoes including this and the ever-so-costly heelys. most of his shoes & almost all of his clothes are just hand-me-downs by my nephews or other friends from church.

so you can imagine how ecstatic he was when he opened the box.
fly kicks
. one of the coolest ever.


then he asked me - uhhmm so mommy you think can i dunk now? :)

lol. he didn't & still can't dunk. but he did play basketball better. psychologically, i think it inspired him to do better at his game.

thank God for friends who love blessing others.

those kinds of people inspire me to do better too.





:)


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

i want to learn.

i want to learn A LOT of things.

i'm always wanting to learn new stuff. i try to read books, get others to teach me (if others have time to), or go online and see what the world wide web has to offer me.


there are things i would really like to learn, like how to:

  • sew
  • surf
  • photography & editing
  • dj
  • cook new dishes, learn to bake & make cakes
  • play golf
  • i want to learn another language - like spanish or even chinese.


then there are other dreams that are screaming within me

that i'm so hungry to learn about like:

  • how to write better - so I can start on my book.
  • how to speak in public with confidence - i really want to learn how to deliver speeches properly and learn how to preach

  • how to counsel people biblically but also scientifically.
  • how to properly study the bible & put sermons together.


i need to go back to school. I've been wanting to back since 9 years ago, but i can't afford it right now (since i'm putting my son through school). so i guess i just have to do it the old way - through self study.

so to any of you who are reading this, if you have any suggestions on what book i should read, especially within the dreams that i'm wanting to learn, please feel free to leave comments or suggestions regarding books, websites, shows, etc. - whatever steps i need to take so i can slowly but surely attain these dreams of mine.


thanks.


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

freedom.

Last night was the very first night that I spent trying to clean out what is going to be my new room. I spent 20 minutes just trying to wipe accumulated dust on the window sill and the rest of the night wiping down walls, vacuuming the carpet and folding my clothes.

I usually think that chores were a bore and cleaning was so time consuming.

But last night...I had so much fun doing them!

we have our own room again ... no more sleeping on sleeping bags in the living room!


I officially "moved in" my stuff yesterday. I have this whole weekend to empty my storage and get rid of all my junk that I dont need. I love it how this weekend is the 4th of July weekend, America's freedom day. Somehow, something in me relates to the freedom part. The freedom that you get in having a room that is yours. I can't wait to move in and taste the freedom....
  • Freedom to lie down on MY bed with MY sheets. I'm very particular about my thread counts. LOL
  • Freedom to leave my bed undone, because it's not a sleeping bag in the middle of the living room.
  • Freedom to have my OWN closet, without sharing with anyone else (yes Christian has his own space to put his clothes in too).
  • Freedom to lock myself in the room if I want to shut out the world.
  • Freedom to pray out loud, read the bible out loud, dance to Gospel songs, and cry if i have to without having to worry if someone will walk in and think I'm weird.
  • Freedom to just be, in my own room.
I would have never been this excited and ecstatic with the thought of having my own room, if it were never taken from me. But it was, amongst many other things. But now that I have this blessing back, I cherish it will all my heart. I've learned that some of the things most people don't care about can be considered another's most prized possessions.


It's a daily reminder to ALWAYS count my blessings big and small
and never take anything for granted.....






coz they'd want what Christian and I have in any given day.