Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A non-ideal life

No one is more surprised than I am to find myself in this cookie-cutter role of a mother-wife-entrepreneur. I always thought I'd be a ball-busting corporate bitch living in a posh condo with LV suitcases ready to jetset at any time. But here I am, 6.5mos pregnant with my second child, waiting for my husband with carbonara on the table. I've been carrying the homemaker role pretty well maintaing an orderly house, raising a healthy son and caring for the man of the house. I have a thriving business as well as sports and hobbies that I attend to when I am able. But sometimes I wonder if all these are enough... deep down I know I am meant for more...I just haven't figured it out yet...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Nacho is at the age when he demands full attention... anything less just won't do! With my pregnancy and Pep in full throttle, I avoid being alone with him by going to the office as much as necessary and coming home to either a tasmanian devil who clambers all over me or a sleeping angel whose long lashes disguise his superhuman abilities to exhaust everyone within perimeter.

I thought about how I was pretty much left on my own as a child and that maybe it's ok to do the same with Nacho since i turned out fine. But seeing him grow up right before my eyes, actually communicate in phrases and even full sentences ("Sino 'to... Iron Man?", "Ayan na cockroach", "Dami saging!" "Lagot ka Mama"...), have a sense of humor (he kisses the baby in my belly daw then proceeds to a noisy raspberry!), insist on his preferences ("I want Kung-fu Panda", "I said NO!")and know that he loves me and his father above everything else (he actually tries to fight off sleepiness just to spend more time with us at night)... I realize that I don't want to leave him on his own - not just because he might get messed up, but more so because I don't want to miss out on the adorable baby turning into an amazing little boy who throws the most terrible tantrums as quickly as the tightest hugs... hollers angry wails as loudly as his infectious laughters.

I have grand dreams of travels and luxuries but I thank God for the happiness of simple weekends wrapped in the arms and legs of my son.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Pre Natal Anxiety: The Ugly Child

Nacho is at that phase where he can switch from an obnoxiously hyper daredevil to charming little angel in a snap of a finger depending on which will yield his desired result. I can see right through that sweet smile of his but am not immune to submission when I'm already too tired to put up a fight... it's a given since I'm his mother. What amazes me is the amount of patience from my son's grandmas, uncles, aunts, even the market vendors who would extend discounts or let him play with quail eggs for his amusement. I figured they let him get away with murder (poor quail embryo!) because (thankfully) they think he's adorable!

It's a universal fact that attractive people have it easier than the aesthetically challenged lot but an old article in Time Magazine actually cites a study that 70% of abused or abandoned children had at least one apparent flaw in their appearance like distinct facial irregularities such as a cleft palate or a skin condition.

From childhood experience, my sister being the first and white as snow got preferential treatment to which I adapted by smartening up. I'm worried that my second child might not turn out to be as fair or as quick a learner as Nacho... given the novelty of having a baby in the family has worn off, would everybody still be as nice and patient?

To this my husband answers... "and that is why I pray he turns out to be a boy so his physical appearance will not matter as much. If our baby is a girl then it's a problem either way whether she's ugly or pretty!" Haaay, this calls for a different topic altogether!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Mommy’s Rainy Day Musing

I went with my sister to get her medical requirements for Australian visa application. Companions were not allowed so I waited at the dingy restaurant across the St. Luke’s Medical Center building in Malate. There I saw two babies both about a year old but under very different circumstances. One was sleeping peacefully as her mother went around the tables asking for alms while the other was bawling his eyes out as his young and very attractive parents tried to console him by bringing him back in the air-conditioned confines of their luxury car.

Maybe at infancy we already start adapting to life’s situations. When you’re used to all your needs being met, you get easily troubled by the slightest discomfort while if you’re used to heat and hunger, you learn to just sleep them off.

I thought about how I’m raising my son… he’s at the terrible two stage where he exhausts the lights out of me. Nacho can get very physical and temperamental that I start to wonder if it’s him or I might be doing something wrong. I already cancelled access to his favorite Incredible Hulk videos, introduced him to coloring activities and would reward him with dessert only after a proper meal, but nothing can seem to alleviate his stubbornness. Parents I know tell me this worst part will eventually pass… I really do hope so before I turn into a Casey Anthony.

When my son is old enough to understand I will expose him to the reality that while he will not get everything he wants, he still luckier than most kids… I just pray he grows up to be grateful for his blessings and selfless enough to share them.

Monday, July 25, 2011


The Amigas, as we called ourselves back in college, thought we would be living the Sex & the City life as we go about our successful careers, sharing a posh condo in Makati where we can shop, dine and party as much as we want.

12 years later...
Tams a.k.a Charlotte - the pretty and always proper prom queen is a stay-at-home mom of two with businesses on digital designs, production and printing on the side
Mau a.k.a Samantha - the adventurous temptress is a single mom working in a global financial institution whose stability belies her complex personal life
Ivy a.k.a Carrie - I thought I was Carrie but given her edgy take on fashion and wanderlust, Ivy is it... a blushin' newlywed who avoids the public pressure of childbearing by jetsetting with her husband
Me a.k.a Miranda - self employed mother of a terrible-two with another baby on the way. tries to remain sane by putting household and everyone within a mile radius in order

It's been ages since we got to catch up... oh we would get together in one or another's wedding and one or another child's birthday... until finally, a proper dinner in a nice and quiet restaurant with just the four of us!

Ordering was an icebreaker in itself given new food preferences and restrictions. after going through Momo Cafe's entire menu all with portions for sharing, we finally settled on Momo salad, potato skin with cheese fondue, chicken wings, pizza and cheesecake - that out of the way, the chatterfest began!

Updates although hurried were candid, quips and quotes flew back and forth oblivious to the posh diners surrounding our table. We all had cameras but we were so deep in conversation that nobody remembered to take a group photo of that very rare occasion! It's funny that no matter how much you thought you've changed, you always revert to the unpolished rock you were when thrown back in the mines. We were raw, stripped of all pretensions... who else can we be our truest selves with other than the dearest friends who knew us before we became diamonds.

Without a cue, we unanimously decided at 10pm that it was time to go home to our individual lives. We are all someplace we never thought we would be but without any regret... we have after all become better versions of ourselves at least in each others' eyes.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Shrimp & Roasted Garlic Spaghetti in Tomato Cream Sauce with Kesong Puti

Got my hands on some really fantastic Mr. Moo's kesong puti (white cheese)which I knew will be quickly banished to oblivion if I start spreading it on hot pandesal. Wanting to share it with the rest of the family, I decided to use it on pasta because Nacho just loves showing off his skill in slurping a full-length spaghetti!

I made this yesterday for our mom & son lunch date so I used tiger prawns to make it extra special - he shunned the toppings but loved the pasta as usual, but despite the snub, it really was pretty good!

Shrimp & Roasted Garlic Spaghetti in Tomato Cream Sauce with Kesong Puti
1/2kg Shrimps (shelled)
1/2c Mushrooms (optional)
1 large head of Garlic
150ml Tomato Sauce
150ml All-Purpose Cream
1tbsp Butter
5pcs Basil Leaves
4"sq. Kesong Puti (white cheese cubed)
500g Spaghetti or Penne (cooked)

1) Bake garlic (unhusked) in oven toaster for 15mins. Peel and mash with fork.
2) Saute garlic in butter, add shrimps, mushrooms and basil.
3) Pour in tomato sauce and all-purpose cream. Season with salt and pepper. If sauce is too thick, add in Olive Oil.
4) Turn off heat and add Kesong Puti.

Monday, June 27, 2011

This Will Be The Last Time I Will Be Fat & Pregnant!

I'm pregnant again!

Nacho will be two years and five months old by the time I give birth. I'm lucky to have my mom stay with us but without a reliable househelp, managing my company and Tats' impending provincial assignment, raising two kids is going to be very challenging. Thus I have decided to get my tubes tied after Baby No.2. My OB said I'm too young and to wait in case I change my mind and want more kids but I was already happy with one... having two will be enough.

When my pregnancy test yielded two stripes I wasn't exactly elated and I felt guilty for not being as excited this second time yet annoyed because it caught me at a very hectic time at work and I can certainly do away with the bloating and dizzy spells. I also thought it was too soon and that Nacho needed more of our undivided affection. Memories of emails and phonecalls in between baby's nap, discreetly breastfeeding in public, dairy express after client meetings, 3-minute baths and anxiety attacks over vomit and snot came swarming back. There's also the unsightly dark pouch of a belly that takes too long to go away and the stretchmarks that remain for good. On top of it all, it's the lessened mobility (no running & rowing)and the isolation from the social circle that I have yet to reconnect to.

My concerns may seem selfish and can be solved with available conveniences like infant formula, nurseries, liposuction or a troop of highly paid househelp but I am a woman of limited means yet I intend to give my children the best that I can - the commitment to breastfeed exclusively for at least 6 months, the ability to pay off amortization for a house they can call their own, the attention to recognize their strengths and weaknesses, the fitness to keep up with their energy, the travel opportunities to open up their worlds and the well roundedness to inspire their dreams. As it is I already get very exhausted with my multiple roles in life, I don't want to be spread out too thinly... so again, only two kids for me!

Funny that I never even thought of this cookie-cutter life of "wife-mother-homemaker-entrepreneur" for myself and neither did my family or friends. We thought I'd be a high-powered executive living the swingin' single life! Oh well... here I am and I'm happy =)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Papa's Day

It's been three months since our last househelp. The past 4 weeks have been crazy hectic for both Tats and I so for Father's Day, I proposed a row-eat-movie day underscoring the "date" factor of it just being the two of us. "What about Nacho?" Tats says, "He's sort of the essence of my being a father" - ok fiiiiine, and so Nacho comes along!

The three of us started the day with a trip to the market for our meat supply of the week. I was pointing out the fruits and veggies to my son and for some reason, he would laugh uncontrollably every time I said "pechay"! We went back home for breakfast and shower then off to Cartimar for Tats' jersey... he didn't get to buy anything but I did and we toured Nacho to the pet shops where his mouth was agape the whole time especially when he saw the vibrant fish in the aquarium. Lunch was at Highlands Steakhouse where we were seated near the solo singer/guitarist who Nacho exchanged smiles with the whole time... Tats and I were happy knowing that our son made him feel appreciated amidst the dining crowd. Much later was Nacho's cinema debut. I was very apprehensive that he would make a scene and we will be asked to leave but surprisingly, we got through the entire "X-Men First Class" and actually understood the story!

This day made me realize how lucky Nacho and I are for a husband/ father who provides for us and wants us with him at all times. Happy Father's Day Tats! =)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

heart's desires

On the subject of dream cars, Tats wants a Hummer and I want a Rav4, incredulously he exclaimed, "cheap mo naman, dream car na nga Rav4 lng!" Well in the SUV category it's the one I feel I can actually drive and yes, I am a simpleton when it comes to most aspirations of luxuries... I've never really desired Louis Vuitton's monogrammed essentials, if I can actually afford designer accessories I'd probably be happy enough with Kenneth Coles.

The topic has gotten me thinking, do I not put a premium on myself to want only the best in this life? Or maybe cars and fashion just aren't my passions. So I dug deep for my deepest desires and came up with these...
- to see the world with my family, Turkey, most parts of Europe, Japan, most parts of Africa etc.
- a spacious garden where I can savor the finest wines with family and friends, with Tats or with myself
- for my son to study in at least one of the best universities abroad
- for Tats to be able to open the Toy Store of his dreams
- a writing career that can touch lives and help change the world
- a healthier earth
- a safe and happy society

I do have grand dreams after all =)

Monday, April 18, 2011

In your eyes

In your eyes I am beautiful
as if I am the reason that the sun shone
Your look makes me feel like the shiniest apple
and your eyes are for me alone
In these times I bask and cherish
for I know that someday
things won't be the same no matter how hard I wish
you will find another girl my son and make her feel the same way

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

High Hopes

It is Tats' fervent wish that Nacho take after my smarts and his looks (odavah, ilong pa lang?!)... perish the thought that it be the other way around. Thus, as early as six months our son has been on Cherifer already. Ayoko salubungin pero in fairness, it does seem effective!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Fowl Words

last weekend's highlights, Nacho shouting "CHICKEN" when he saw a hen outside the window and appending "QUACK QUACK" to my, "the duck says..." - I've become such a cliche of a mom!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Little Blackfoot

My husband and I stayed with his parents in the first three years of marriage until getting pregnant made us realize it’s time to grow out of our “boarder-like” existence of being cocooned in our room with junk food and DVDs going out only when called to meals.

We were lucky to find a townhouse in Las Pinas that we could afford through bank loan and amortization started just when we finished paying off our car. The building is old so most of our savings went into the major overhaul but it’s a corner unit facing the park so it seemed more spacious than the 95sqm. two-storey unit that it is.

I took to domesticity like fish to water with my rotating 5-week menu, baby’s daily itinerary and weekend chore & recreation schedule. I enjoyed keeping house and attributed my son’s rosy cheeks to the breeze and sunlight that gently stream from our open yard into the doors and windows.

It is when my son started walking and the househelp had to leave that reality set-in… I am no Martha Stewart!

My work schedule is flexible so I was pretty sure I could manage. As soon as my son slept I quickly went about cooking, washing and cleaning, no problem! Then I took a bath and was ready to play by the time my son awoke. I read all his books and chased him around our bare living room until he got hungry so I gave him a bottle of milk. He contentedly lay down watching TV and I was mighty proud of myself until I saw the bottom of his chubby little feet… they were black!

Apparently my well-ventilated little nest was lined with layers of dust from the intersecting roads outside and sweeping with walis tambo only makes the particles scatter about. I quickly washed my son’s feet and scoured the floor with a damp mop. A closer inspection of the nooks and crannies of our house revealed more dust everywhere and as the reality of a filthy abode sank deeper, my subconscious whispered that it’s also unusually silent… I scanned the room and shrieked in absolute horror at the sight of my son brushing his face against the soiled whiskers of the broom!

I need change, I need to start the doom of the broom, I need help!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

My Amazing Nacho-boy!

Of course he's amazing - he's my son!

More than vanity, I say this because like all other mothers, there is no other child more amazing to me than my own. His every fete is an event because he's the only kid I spend the most time with.

At the risk of being shameless talking to anybody who most probably would not care to listen, I'll just write down snippets about Nacho that gets this momma brimming with pride and joy... for his future reference when he already hates me and thinks that I hate him too...
- he knows his alphabet (almost completely) already
- he loves his books & insists we read to him over and over, thank goodness for Dr. Seuss Apple apps
- he can count to ten, but does it only when he thinks nobody's listening
- he likes shocking or disgusting us by sticking his fingers up his nose or chasing us with soiled hands
- he ignores aggression from bigger kids. last Saturday at the grocery, while Nacho was pushing our cart, a girl about 4yrs old holding a hotdog on stick went up to him and started shouting "this is mine! mine". he just stared and went on pushing... of course Tats didn't let it slide and remarked "that's the price of beauty anak... and to think you're the boy", shempre sumimangot yung tatay ng batang babae!
- he has a naughty sense of humor! his favorite play is poking Tats in the bellybutton and nipples, hilarious how his father attempt to shield all 3 from Nacho's attacks
- he would attempt to climb on anything and everything but will go down when you say "Nacho baba!"
- when a car door opens, he'd be the first to climb in... lakwatserong bata!
- he attempts to sing gthe long Tagalog words to Out of Body Special's "Kamakailan Lang"
- he adores me above all else... for now

Friday, February 18, 2011

this hurts me more than it hurts you

had to scold Nacho for tinkering with the socket last night. he gave me a hurt look, tried to suppress his cry, paced, pounded his fist on the wall... and when the broken sobs came, i almost broke down myself. he hugged me from behind still crying... from the other side of the room Tats gloated "so ngayon naiintindihan mo na ang term na - this hurts me more than it hurts you?"

Thursday, February 17, 2011

missing out

Nacho now takes off his own clothes, says "take a bath" when he wants one, looks up the night sky and cries out to the "moo!", dances sideways when he hears music and does many other things that surprise me. I thought i was going to be the one to teach and witness him learn everything... but as much as he is on top of my list, he's not the only one on it... in the same way that I'm not the only person in his life he can learn from

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

How do you keep the music playing?

it's a slow day in the office so i got to checking my long forgotten Friendster account and came across this photo of Tats and me when i surprised him with a small party on his 30th birthday... it's been almost 3 years ago and i don't think we've had another "kilig" photo since.

we got free movie tickets from our credit card company valid for two months and i had to give them away right before they expired. last week i joked to tats about us going out on a date..."why?", he asked.

we've only been married 5 years and already we're embarrassed to be affectionate with each other. over the daily grind, we've become effective partners and doting parents. but how do we bring back the lovers who talked for hours and felt proud to be with the hottest person on the planet?

the lowest moment of my married life was when i was waiting in the lobby to meet with a boss. a guy in his office lingered and i heard him ask the guard about me. i was glad he found me attractive, which i didn't feel anymore from the man who matters to me most. i left the building in tears.

i understand now that it takes a lot of effort to make marriages work. it's not enough to just let love take it's natural course - without paved roads, love may get lost and never be found