Marco Delgado: Not given everything he wanted (and it was okay)


Wind turbines and Marco Delgado

Marco Deglado has a legacy to Philippine Christendom that not very many people know about.

It started with passion, and a mission. Ambassador Antonio C. Delgado, Marco’s grandfather and the First Philippine Ambassador to the Vatican, made it his personal advocacy to have a Filipino saint canonized. This became a reality with the beatification in 1981 and canonization in 1987 of San Lorenzo Ruiz. An issue came up, however, when the sculptor started work on the likeness—whose face?

It was then that Marco’s grandmother took out a picture of the boy Marco (who was then living with them) and thus, immortalized him as the face of the patron saint of the Philippines, the Filipinos and interestingly, the Overseas Filipino Workers.

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Reflections on coming home



Yes, I went back to the Philippines after 1 year of leaving it to settle in beautiful British Columbia. I had no plans of returning that soon but it was a welcome respite to Canada’s winter. I have to say friends made it worth my while – it was an emotional trip (I realized what great friends and work! I had left behind) – and I was even rewarded the portrait here (hubby missed me – thank you, hon). Well, there’s the fact that my little boy asked for me in the 10 days I was gone only once (if hubby is to be believed), and he would now cling to his dad instead of me at nights. Not sure too if my daughter missed me (Danvic is proving to be a very adept dad). Yes, there was a trade off. But all in all I think that trip was a winner (thanks to my boss for making it possible).

The main comment I received, however, was that I had little or no photos to show for it. Thing is, I am not one to lug a heavy (or even light) camera. I prefer to replay everything in the privacy of my memory (where I will be free to embellish as necessary).

Here’s what I wrote in the Philippine Canadian Inquirer about it. 

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New Year, New Life

Enjoying winter


Literally.  Because we took it a notch.  Er, notches.

Family and I – we just moved to Canada.  A country an ocean away, separated from us by 13 hours of flight time. A country of rugged beauty, incessant rains, warm winters (8 degrees is warm for them), trees with breadth longer than an arm span, quaint waterfalls and villages, deer that crosses roads at its peril, snow-capped mountains and seas in one sweep of the eye.  A country we have only begun to know.

But before I move on, please allow me to look back.

Because there are some things that I will be missing in my home country, the Philippines.

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A Discovery In the Culinary Capital


Photos courtesy of Madelene Uyehara

Cross-post from MoneyDoctors Blog.

Pampanga. The birthplace of many chefs extraordinaire. So it is no wonder that there are some great restaurants in the province. But only some. Hubby and I wondered about this and surmised that because every other Kapampangan is a cook, every Kapampangan is a food critic. I mean, the standards are set so high! Before you can entice a Kapampangan to come hither to a restaurant – the cuisine has to better than what their mothers and lolas cook. And that is a tall order.

One brave soul is Araceli Timbol, a graduate of the Center for Culinary Arts, Manila, who also trained at The Blue Elephant, Bangkok and Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in Napa Valley. Tucked away in what was once the neighborhood of the rich in metro Pampanga is her The Village Chef.

We heard about The Village Chef from hubby’s sister and brother who were raving about it. It was hubby’s birthday and we thought, what a great excuse to splurge!

And so we did. (splurging is allowed some of the time)

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Celebrating the Chinese New Year


The Chinese New Year has been flitting in and out of the edge of my culture and consciousness as kaleidoscopic images of round red lanterns, tikoy, dragon dances and loud firecrackers.

I remember tikoy (Chinese New Year’s cake made of glutinous rice) and my dad dipping it in just-beaten egg yolks and egg whites, frying it on the pan until it gets golden brown all throughout.  We would gather round the table and get it from the plate while it is still hot, our hands getting sticky and oily and sticky again, while our tongues seek and taste the gooey center where the goodness is until there is no more.

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Sunday Buffets and A Birthday Celebration at Dusit Thani

Sunday Buffet: A Comparison

We broke the bank.

Of course we did not.  But, well, the day was certainly not one of our frugal days. (we try to be frugal some of the time and fail some of the time)

It was my birthday and usually, we go overseas.  But, as they say, a baby changes everything (everything) so this year, we had to stay put.   I am not complaining, though.  I am so in love with baby.  With him and our daughter in tow, we headed straight for Hotel Dusit Thani for their Sunday Crossover Brunch.

We love buffets and are partial to Sofitel’s Spirals.  But we were ready for a change.  There were rave reviews about Hotel Dusit’s brunch.  It was a restaurant tour concept and there were four cuisines we can feast on – Thai, Japanese, Italian and an-around-the-world offering.  It all sounded very appealing.

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(Hopefully) Not Too Late Christmas Tips

You Can Make this a Special Christmas

At Christmas time, the mall is particularly stressful.

I mean the crowds are massive and stifling, the parking is horrible, the merchandise are disgustingly overpriced.

Christmas never used to be this way.  It used to be special.  The glittery, dreamy, new-clothes-new-shoes-lots-of-gifts-and-sparkles kiddy kind of special.

(Or is it because, then, I was not in charge (and not spending)?)

But I have grown up (as I must) and now it is my turn to make it special for my brood.

(And I wonder, was it stressful too for my mom and dad, or is it more stressful now because the world has become more fast-paced, more guilt-ridden, more material-focused?)

So ever since the countdown for Christmas began, I have been on the lookout for other alternative ways to give or buy gifts without breaking the bank or losing my sanity.  Here are some of my picks:

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Greening of the Soul

Green Your Soul

Everyone feels it.

The earth is no longer young.  Its resources are no longer inexhaustible.  Temperatures are rising.  Entire species are disappearing.

Just yesterday, everyone cavorted in clean, sparkling water, drenched themselves in sunshine, fished an abundant ocean, breathed air that is fresh, harvested a generous, bountiful earth.

Something happened between the space of yesterday and today

Mother earth was taken for granted, and overtaken (over taken) by human greed.

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