Monday, December 19, 2011

Nowhere Near Santa

I’ll cut to the chase: Not all will have a happy Christmas. Typhoon Sendong hit the country (Cagayan de Oro, Iligan City, Northern Mindanao) Saturday afternoon, seven days before Christmas, leaving 600 people dead and 440 still missing, mostly children.

If only, they can have them back.

The photo shows a father holding his son, dead and covered in mud. Aren’t you glad he is not you, even more grateful the child is not yours?

Warning: too graphic. Funeral parlors have started turning away families with their dead. They just don’t have enough facilities to keep them.

They just have to wrap him in newspaper.

And you thought you don’t have new clothes this year?

I feel for all the victims. While praying in the comfort of our own homes, let us take a break from all the Christmas festivities and HELP the victims. They need our prayers but they also need the money and material things from us so they can build their lives again after this.

Here’s a list where you can send help.

Red Cross
To help, send RED to 4143 (Smart) and RED to 2899 (Globe). * Smart subscribers may send financial help to the Philippine Red Cross through text. To donate, cellphone users should send RED to 4143. Valid donation amounts are 10, 25, 50 and 100 and will be charged to the subscriber’s prepaid load or postpaid bill. * Globe subscribers may send help to Red Cross. Just text RED and send to 2899. Valid donation amounts are 10, 25, 50, 100 (For ex, RED 10).

Smart subscribers all over the country may send help to those affected by typhoon Sendong. Smart Money users can instantly transfer funds through their mobile phones to the official Baha Fund account number 5577 5130 6822 1104. Donors may also deposit cash to the same Smart Money account number in any Banco De Oro branch nationwide or through Hapinoy and Cebuana Lhuillier outlets. * SMARTCares: Subscribers may donate to #Sendong victims via text. Just send RED to 4143. Valid donation amounts 10, 25, 50, 100.”

Globe Subscribers Through GCASH, text DONATE and send to 2882.

One for Iligan
Iligan Bloggers Society through One For Iligan allows you to donate $1 for the Iligan flood victims of typhoon Sendong. * One for Iligan is a Google doc that tells you how you can donate at least US$1 via PayPal * Contact points SITE: http//:iliganbloggers.comEMAIL: iliganbloggers@gmail.comFB Fanpage: * How to else to help?The group Iligan Bloggers Society says that aside from paypal donations, they are also asking for canned goods, noodles, bath and laundry soaps, toothpaste, rice, used clothings and slippers.

FB Fanpage:

Xavier University, Tabang
Any help -- food, clothes, books, bottled water, others -- can be sent to Fr. Eric Garcia Velandria SJ, coordinator of Sendong Operation, KKP Office, Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan, 9000, Corrales Ave. Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines. According to XU-CSG President, GemGem Tero, food and clothes donations are more needed. Account Name: Xavier University Bank Name: Bank of the Philippine Islands, CDO Divisoria Branch Account Number: 9331-0133-63

Armed Forces of the Philippines
The Civil Relations Service AFP at Camp Aguinaldo is accepting donations. It will fly donations/relief goods via C130. Contact details: Situation Awareness Center (SAC), CRS AFP, Camp Aguinaldo, QC Landline: 912-6615 CP Nr. (0917)2471252 Focal Person: Lt. Col. Rolando Rodil, Operations Officer

Department of Social Welfare and Development Volunteers are needed at DSWD Cagayan de Oro (Masterson Road, Upper Carmen) to repack and deliver relief goods. Call 09066150095 @DSWDserve

The Oblate Missionary Foundation
(OMF) accepts donation for the victims of Sendong. Email us: Call or text us 0644212652/09177204604/09228366422 You can send food items, drinking water, used clothing, blankets, medicines, cash and what you have to the following dropping centers.

Panday Bulig Relief and Rehabilitation Center
Located in: Tabang Mindanao Center 12th-22nd streets, Nazareth 9000 Cagayan de Oro CityT/F: +63 (88) 856 6413E: for Ms. Beryl Tranco)

Rural Missionaries of the Philippines
Northern Mindanao Sub-Region Room 01, Kalinaw Lanao Center0016 Bougainvilla Puti, Villaverde9200 Iligan CityT/F: +63 223 5179E: rmpnmr@gmail.comW: for Ms. Ida Melody Bucog)

StartArt Project
Drop Center in Metro Manila c/o StartArt Project 10A Alabama st New Manila Quezon CityMobile:+63926 7112450 For cash donations, please send to this account: Bank Name and Address:Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI)Quezon Avenue branch, 9200 Iligan City, Philippines Account number: 009359-1348-08 Swift Code: BOPIPHMM Account Name and Address: RMP-NMR Inc.

Cash donations may be sent through the following accounts: TV5 Kapatid Foundation Inc. BDO Savings Account No. 005310-410164 and Bank of the Philippine Islands Savings Account No. 1443-05333-2 | Donations in kind like food, clothing, utensils, blankets, mats, water containers, and medicines may be sent to News5 Aksyon Center, TV5 office in San Bartlolome, Novaliches, Quezon City. For inquiries, please call News5 Aksyon Center hotline - 938-6393.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Beautiful As Ever

Christmas is here and each day is a count down. It was right around this time that everyone seems eaten up by what called holiday rush. You know, shopping, spending, indulging. It’s weird, but all the stresses and pressures of keeping up with the holiday spirit, and as difficult as it is financially burdensome from this time until it’s over, it is still is the merriest time of the whole year. As a child, I don't think I'll ever be able to forget how it all left me feeling: Thrilled, eager, happily expecting.

However, the feelings toned down a bit now that I am older. Although I still get this “mystical” holiday experience occasionally, heightened by all of light decorations, Christmas songs, Christmas parties, family reunions, it still dawned on me that this isn’t only the merriest, but also the most emotional, most sentimental of all months in the year. In fact, so many emotions were flying around at this time. On quiet nights, like last night, for example, when it was so quiet in my house that I could hear the sound of a pin drop, things creep into my mind and send me to some realizations. What did I achieve now that 2011 is almost over? And what is ahead of me this coming year? That’s why I sometimes think, adulthood spoils the spirit. You became overly realistic and practical, you just can’t afford to stay mesmerized and enthralled with delightful events like Christmas.

Heck, but the kid in me refused to grow.

I still want to get lost in the moment, be inspired with all the joy and bliss I see in my children’s eyes, and the love and loyalty of my husband. Enjoy the company of my mother, sister, brother, nieces and nephews. And though some friends went away, I’d love to have them in my life once again, keep them, connect with them, and love them. And to my present friends, I hope to have you for all what’s left of my life. Yes, I still get thrilled with wrapped gifts. But the gifts of time, love and devotion from family and friends are more valuable than any human will ever have.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

All I Want For Christmas

Dear Santa,

I may have annoyed few people, and told few white lies, but I have also had really good moments this year, haven’t I? So if you feel like rewarding me, here’s what I want. And please, don’t get through the chimney. We don’t have one. Don’t sneak at the window either; my violent reflex could really hurt you.

Anyway, here is my Christmas list, in no particular order. I want it all. Thank you.

What could be a more perfect stocking stuffer than the latest iPhone 4S. It is full of amazing new features that make it even easier to stay not only on top of your business,but it will also make you the great envy of your techy friends. Meet Siri, the built-in intelligent assistant, to schedule your meetings, set reminders, find a great lunch spot, fix your car, or send message to wife. Can you beat that?

You know how much I love singing. Well, this Extreme Magic Sing is for me. And I’ve been dreaming for it for years. IT’S TIME, SANTA, IT’S TIME. And it's only P 10K at Abenson or ShoeMart...I should know since I caress it every time I'm in there.

And what’s best for killing time, this pink Nano Ipod is just the thing. With 2,000 songs and 5 hours of video, I can’t wait to have one of these.

Sure, I thought at first that this Hawaii Chair was another exercise gimmick. It's a chair with a motor strapped beneath it. The base of the chair gyrates your bottom and thaws your stubborn fats. Since I hate going to the gym and diet isn’t in my daily vocabulary, so this one might work for me. Who knows I might end up looking as hot as a Playboy centerfold one day?

And finally, a cd of one of my favorite local singers, Regine Velasquez. Unfortunately, I still don't have a copy of her “Low Key” album. I just love her until today. I’ve always had an attraction to her kind of songs. This is actually affordable at P 400.00 at Astrovision.

So, let's try to forget all of the times I may have thrown temper tantrums, or how I was to blame for frequent headaches and pains of people around me. Just concentrate on the good know, the ones that involved me being unconscious.


Monday, December 5, 2011

What Saved Me From Grinch-ing

No matter how I adore Christmas, I also detest the tension that comes with it. It’s not because of the familial trauma that they entail- though that would certainly be reason enough- but just because it is sometimes too demanding. It required to be celebrated regardless of how you are feeling at the time.

For example, you need to put up Christmas tree and cram the house with greens, and reds and anything gold right now. Or don’t put them at all and miss out on seeing them for an entire year, which I don’t think my kids would agree. But I'm slowly, but surely, getting there. I have already hanged our wreath and added Christmas lights to it this weekend. But more to it, I still haven’t made any plans yet where to take the children. For this year, Christmas will just be me and the kids since husband has work on Christmas day (grrr!). I seriously believed that Puregold Price Club has bosses that if not separated, are annulled and divorced.

At the risk of sounding sappy and Grinch-ly, I have to admit that, as emotional and ephemeral as my other posts are, I am actually just as anyone this time of the year. Who isn’t completely terrified at the realization that the holidays and the forced interaction with family members and the gifts that they need to get are all but upon us?

In other news though, my son is going to get his dream laptop this year. How’s that?

I can just hear him.

Me: “Aunt is going to give you a laptop”
Son: “Really!?
Me:”But that’s pretty early for you”
Son:”But everyone has laptop already.
Me:”you’re just going to spew peas to hordes of walking zombies all day”.
Son:”Uh okay, I can switch to angry birds if you like.”

Since this will be more likely the case, my only saving grace is that I can now blog during weekends. I just hope the kid will share it with me.

So? it’s Christmas after all.