28 September 2011

How Much More Of Penguins Am I Supposed To Take?


The Little Devil & His Big Evil Laugh

Two weekends ago my cousins and I took our kids to Baguio.  If you haven't been in a while, you will be absolutely shocked at how much it's deteriorated.  Everything is still there - the horses at Wright Park, the boats and bikes at Burnham and even the mini golf at John Hay - but nothing is the same.  There is only one place that was absolutely unforgettable for me, the Butterfly Sanctuary in Camp John Hay.  Not for the butterflies but for the crazy tour guide.  We can't figure out if he is totally insane or high on meth or both.  More likely the latter.

This guy doesn't even give you a tour, hell it takes you all of 17 seconds to see the whole place.  He has most of the butterflies on a small tree near him and INSISTS you do the cheesiest poses with the butterflies and a vase of flowers that appears to be super glued to his hand.  Perhaps he doesn't really insist but just does his thing and you don't even realize what hit you.  When we walked in he was reprimanding a father and his kids for not bringing a camera to THE Butterfly Sanctuary.  Then it was our turn and Aiden immediately tries to touch the butterfly.  The daft dude loses it and yells at Aiden.  "Huwag mong hawakan, pasaway ka!"  (Don't touch them, you naughty little boy!).  I didn't even bother stepping in, take a look at Aiden's reaction.

You show him, Aiden.  Crazy old man.  Hey, only I get to yell at my kids.  After the incident he skipped Aiden's turn for his butterfly misdemeanor.  Aiden still didn't give a damn, he didn't budge, he sat there BWAHAHAING until he got what he wanted. 

Double Double Toil And Trouble

Having two boys twenty months apart is a total kick in the pants.  It is absolutely awesome and ridiculously crazy at the same time.  Aside from all the memorable Hallmark moments, the hugs, the kisses, there are tantrums, whines, yelling, time outs, hitting, biting and brawls.  From the boys and from me.  The old cliche there is never is a dull moment would be most appropriate right now.  Let me just tell you how delightful having two little earthlings is.

Up until Gael was two I spent a great deal of my time changing diapers.  I no longer spent my evenings researching the latest season's color trends but finding the most efficient home diaper disposal system.  It's sucks having to change so many diapers at home and a total buzz kill when you have to change two poop diapers somewhere public like a restaurant with a minuscule restroom and no changing table.  Toilet training was bliss compared to this.

Then there were the bottles.  Both boys drank from a bottle until they were four.  Yes, that's right FOUR years old.  I was on the bottle till I was six so if you're going to diss me about letting them be on the bottle for so long you'll have to go through my mama first.  The bottles weren't so bad when I lived in Spain and I just threw them in the dishwasher with everything else, hand washing them in the Philippines or on trips was a major hassle.  Not only that they each had different bottles and nipples so I wouldn't get confused whose what which and which was whose.  Packing that in the diaper bag required the skill of a master Tetris player.

For three and half years I was either pushing a stroller or wearing a baby every single day.  Sometimes both.  I went everywhere on foot - daycare, grocery, market, park, emergency room -  with the earthlings in tow.  For those of you in the Philippines, this obviously was not in our sidewalk-less country with no ramps for strollers.  It was actually a good thing.  It got my ass moving, I was in better shape and I felt free.  Having to take the car to get anywhere sucks.  I have had 2 single strollers, 2 double strollers, a baby carrier, a ring sling, a pouch and a mei tai.  In case you were wondering I did use every single one of them more than enough times to make it worth the purchase.

More than the diapers, the bottles, the pacifiers, the sleep training and all that jazz the fun was really in the hellish "phases" children love to torture all parents with.  Life is somewhat fair though, they don't go through them together.  When one is a complete pain in the ass the other one is angel.  Or at least looks like an angel in comparison.    My personal favorite is the tantrums.  I am reminded there is a God when only one of them has a fit of fury, throws himself on the floor and turns his body into jelly.  We get out of the house quicker when one eagerly dresses himself while I chase the other one and practically pin him to the floor to get his shirt on.  Grocery shopping with a fussy baby isn't so bad when your toddler loves to push the little cart.  When only one of them has to go for a time out or into the war room it helps maintain my sanity.  There must be some sibling pact of tag teaming when the going gets tough. 

I certainly cannot wait for the day they become hormone induced, girl crazed, party going, alcohol drinking, club hopping, car driving teenagers together.  I'll do a follow up post when I get there.

23 September 2011

Moments Momstyle

The earthlings mama Rone Valles Guerrero was recently featured on Moments.  Aside from the messy hair and crooked mouth .... enjoy the video.

21 September 2011

Fathering Earthlings: Travel Tips

Paco travels extensively for work.  He takes prides in being a professional traveler, not a professional tourist like me.  Gael is his professional traveler in training.  Training being the operative word because this earthling loves all the touristy stuff just like me.  I guess the apple fell on the wrong side of the tree.

13 September 2011

In An Elevator

Aiden has a knack for picking the most public of places to unleash his killer one liners.  You know the ones that make you wish the earth would open up and swallow you whole. The more the people the better or the shock value doesn't have the same effect.

Aiden:  Is it good to eat junk food.

Me:  No, it isn't.

Aiden:  What will happen if you eat junk food?

Me:  You won't be healthy.

Aiden:  Why?

Me:  It doesn't have any vitamins or minerals and it doesn't give you any energy.

Aiden:  Does it give you stupid thoughts?

12 September 2011

A Twilight Zone Moment

Last Saturday I tool the kids to the bookstore where they got to pick a book each to buy.  The book Aiden chose was The Man Who Walked Between The Towers by Mordicai Gerstein.  I got chills when we read the book at bedtime.  It turns out the book is in homage to the World Trade Center of New York City and here is Aiden selecting this particular book on the eve of the the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

Maybe I am being over dramatic but I totally think it is a Twilight Zone moment.  I found a cartoon based on the book on YouTube for you to see the story for yourselves.

I also found this 1974 news report of the the actual incident and a short statement of Philippe Petit.  I love that his sentence was so hippie dippie groovy.  If that happened today I bet he would be sued by the owners, the security company and the state. 

07 September 2011

The Builder

Consistency is key seems to be the guiding principle of Aiden's 4 year old life.  He likes playing with the same things and in the same spot, he watches the same movie over and over again for centuries, he picks a favorite toy every few months and never ever lets go of it.  Blocks have been his favorite thing for a while now.  He spends all his free time building and rebuilding igloos for his penguins, race tracks for McQueen, and towers for the Angry Birds.  The current theme is Penguins at the Piston Cup.


It's In My Kiss

I should never have opened my big mouth.  As soon as I gloated that Paco is no longer allowed to give Aiden lots of kisses but I am, I jinx myself.  For someone that believes the infallible laws of jinxing things, I should have simply shut up.    When Gael was three months old he had his first night of 12 hours sleep, I was so excited I announced it to the whole world and their neighbors.  The next time he slept through the night was a whole other grueling three months after.  The jinx is a powerful thing. 

Aiden must have thought I was getting too complacent in the mothering department and he decides to ruffle my feathers a bit.  The little devil wants to keep me on my toes.  Eyes on the ball at all times.  No timeouts for this mama.  There is a new rule regarding MY kisses.

Aiden: Are you wearing lipstick? Don't kiss me if you're wearing lipstick.

Me:  I'm not!  My lips are naturally pinkish.

Aiden:  No they're not.  I can see the lipstick.


06 September 2011


Gael is a Beleiber.  Yes, you read that right a Befuckinglieber.  At first it was moderately cute and incredibly funny.  Imitating the signature hair don't do apparently was just the tip of the Beiberberg.  We have had drama over the hair and the proper way to do the Beiber hair flip.  Enduring the 3D movie simply wasn't enough to shake it off.  He has got the Beiber fever full on.  He has asked, begged and pleaded for his songs on our iPods.  I am closer to 40 than 30, that is way too old for crap pop music.  If you have any good excuses for not downloading his album help me out here.  Please.  Cartoons are no longer his top YouTube searches, if he isn't looking for the World Cup best goals it's the official Justin Beiber videos.

I remember when I was a die hard Duran Duran fan I listened to them on records and my Walkman.  To repeat Wild Boys I had to remove the cassette tape from the Walkman and rewind it by twirling the tape on a pen so my batteries would last.  To catch the new View to A Kill video where Simon Le Bon delivers that killer ending line "Bon, Simon Le Bon" I had to wait for the single hour of MTV that would air here.  Now everything is a click away.  Feeding the fever more than it should.  I wonder if I would have begged for a Madonna perm if the Internet existed then.  Shudder!              

Gael, I can only hope that you read this in a decade and cringe with shame.  It's payback time, honey.  Payback for all the time I consumed listing and watching Justin Beiber with you.