Mommyness is Happiness
On motherhood, marriage, and daily life

The Best Nights of my Life

August 24th, 2007 by

Raein tagged me to do this meme: The Best Nights of your Life. Thanks, raein!:) Sorry I just saw it now.

Rule: Name five of the Best Nights of your Life and then tag four people.

1. Graduation

It signaled the beginning of a new chapter in my life. Finishing college with honors (even if I had many extra curricular activities and a boyfriend) made my family proud. The best part was having my mom and siblings with me that very night. I missed them a lot. *Sigh*

2.Elbi nights

elbi nights[1].mp3
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The party scene in UPLB is definitely unforgettable. It’s you who will define it. You need not go to bars to enjoy. Staying in the apartment with friends and some refreshment (ehem), food, and good music also yield tremendous fun and wonderful memories.

3. Nights with hubby

Ooops… What are you thinking?

I love it when we just talk till morning about senseless stuff or things that happened to us before and analyzing how we’ve come to be the persons that we are today. We talk about people we despise, people we love, our dreams and aspirations.

4. Cuddle nights with Vito

Each night before sleeping, I make sure that Vito gets a high dose of my hugs and kisses. Sometimes he likes it, sometimes he doesn’t. But, I guess, that’s my way of showing him how much he is loved and adored. I love you, Vito!

5. Nights at the beach I love how the waves kiss at sea. The sound of the sea calms me. And it’s different at night because the mood is all serene and the rest of the busy world is sleeping.

Whoever wants to this meme, feel free to do it! I’m tagging you!

Should I start Vito on using the potty?

July 17th, 2007 by

These past days, I noticed that Vito’s wetter than usual even with his large size diapers. Is this a sign that I should start to toilet train him? Or is it still too early?Some say that a child can be toilet trained as early as 18 months but others think that it’s better to intervene at 2 years or more. Vito’s nearing 18 months. I’m just concerned that I might not be able to teach him well.

According to Freud’s psychosexual stages of development, toilet training may result to an anal retentive or anal expulsive personality depending on the response of the child and these may have long-term effects on a child’s character.

Freud labeled on character type the ANAL RETENTIVE, the child who learns to hold back his or her feelings to gain the approval of others. If training or punishment is too strict, the child may learn to defend himself from being guilty by becoming compulsively near, orderly, obedient, and by holding back his feelings and needs.

Anal-retentives learn to live up to the expectations of others to avoid punishment and to receive praise. Forever after they may become dependent on others for their feelings of self-worth. They may have to “achieve” to win the affection and attention of others to make them feel worthy. Often the “over-achievers” in the world are anal-retentive character types. Some may become compulsive “workaholics”, dependent for their identity and worth on their achievement at work.

The ANAL-EXPULSIVE character type is self-confident, assertive, outgoing and is relatively uninhibited. The expulsive expresses feelings easily and is independent in thought and action. A persuasive, expressive type, the expulsive is often chosen to be a leader. Expulsives have a low tolerance for frustration. They are the two-year old who wants his way and may “blow up” in a temper tantrum if something stands in the way of their pleasure.

Expulsives tend to be disorganized and messy, but very creative and imaginative. Expulsives live life on their own schedules and are often late. They feel little shame or guilt for their actions. Expulsives are self-confident, free and spontaneous in action, but rarely predictable. Expulsives tend to be sensation-seekers who love adventure and travel. Psychodynamic Development

With these facts, I have to make sure that Vito is ready for toilet training. I don’t wanna be too strict or too lenient, either. It’s a difficult stage and one day, I have to face it head on.

I saw this toilet training ad from Japan (via YouTube). Check it out. You might learn from it!

How did you toilet train your child? Or are you also about to toilet train your child?

“Hate” is such a strong word

July 10th, 2007 by

I was tagged by newest blog buddy, Arlene. All I have to do is enumerate the things I hate. Hmmm… Hate is such a strong word. Haha. Let’s see what will come out of my hate list.

1. Food I hate. Anything that tastes too bitter. I also don’t like main dishes that are sweet.

2. Fruits I hate. It definitely wouldn’t be durian. I grew up in Davao City and that means, I too grew up with durian. I super love it. My husband doesn’t. I soo love fruits but if there’s one fruie I would not eat, that would be “chico.” I think it has got something to do with the sandy texture. I was still a kid when I first ate chico. Never tried to eat it again.

3. Veggies I hate. When I was a kid, I hated a lot of vegetables especially “ampalaya” and “okra.” But hubby, who’s a veggie-lover, taught me to eat all types of vegetables when we were still bf-gf in college so right now, I take in anything. But perhaps, okra will still be the least loved veggie (because of the texture, again).

4. Celebrities/People that I hate. Rosanna Roces. No need to explain. Haha.

5. Event/Situation/Incident that i hate. I hate it when taxi drivers don’t give change or ask more than what’s on the meter. In Davao, the taxi drivers give you your change up to the last cent.

Read the rest of the entry…

Movie: Georgia Rule

June 19th, 2007 by

I just watched the movie”Georgia Rule,” which highlights mother-daughter relationships of women (Jane Fonda, Felicity Huffman and Lindsay Lohan) from three generations.

I watched the movie without expectations. I did not read the summary nor browsed the Internet to read about it but I ended up in tears. It is a beautiful film, where one woman’s love for her daughter is tested. It has a good twist and a good ending.

I invite you to go watch it.

Kids and Dads

May 28th, 2007 by

Last week, I read about the importance of kids’ playtime with their dads in the article entitled Parenting Advice: Why Kids Need their Dads. Fatherly play proved to have a lot of developmental benefits, specially for male kids.

Research shows that physical engagement–like wrestling, roughhousing (when not carried to an extreme) and warm, playful interaction–helps boys learn to regulate and control their behavior, deal with a range of emotions, and adapt to a variety of situations.

During playtime, a child is given the chance to observe his father’s facial expressions and variations in movement, and eventually, will help the child become a ‘good manager of emotions.’

According to authors Jim and Charles Fay, roughhousing teaches your kids that you love them, that you’re strong enough to control them, and that you won’t control them unless it’s necessary. Your kids learn that you’re powerful, and kind
and gentle at the same time.

Read the rest of this entry »

Mommyness’ new love: photography

May 25th, 2007 by

Pathway from our house; Makes me feel like a bride everyday. Thanks to our neighbor’s bougainvillea flower plants.

I discovered the wonders of macrophotography last weekend.

The Language of Flowers or, Say It with Flowers

Rose; any color; “Love”
Rose; deep red; “Bashful shame”
Rose, single; pink; “Simplicity”
Rose, thornless; any color; “Early attachment”
Rose; white; “I am worthy of you”
Rose, withered; white; “Transient impressions”
Rose; yellow; “Decrease of love, jealousy”

© 1975 - 1981 by David Wallechinsky & Irving Wallace

Belated Happy Mother’s Day

May 17th, 2007 by

An Ode to Mom

Almost five years have passed since my father died. After his untimely demise, mom has stood both as a mother and a father to me. And in some way, I think I have not given her due credit for that. I grew up idolizing my father. His was a story that inspires me so much to succeed and make a difference. Yet, all those years I never realized that behind my father’s success was a loving and motivating wife. I never realized that mom was powerfully working in the background. And today, I would like to talk about HER: my friend, confidant, protector, my father and my mother. Mom, this is for you.

I admit that I am not always so easy to handle. I am stubborn, a girl who has a free mind. Independent-minded and relaxed as I am, I know mom has had a hard time dealing with my strong yet carefree personality. Yet, mom never grew tired of reminding me of my duties and responsibilities as her daughter. She never fails in recognizing my abilities and correcting my faults. As a daughter, I feel I have messed up some things but mom stays by my side unceasingly with her unconditional love. And I feel twice the pain whenever I cause her heartaches.

She had a lot of stories to share about how she felt when I was still in her womb and what were the things that she did. She sang songs and read fairy tales to me so I would come out as a good singer and a good speaker. She believed that in doing so, I would become a more intelligent and talented person.

True enough, I grew up passionate about music and singing. I joined singing contests during my childhood in Davao City and once, tried the Metropop Songwriting Festival with my friend and ally, Winfred. I, too, grew up as a straight-A student, notching honorific citations and awards from elementary to college. Well, maybe mom knew about Stephen Covey’s “begin with the end in my mind”. Haha. Even during her conception with me, she already had a picture of what I am going to be and more or less, it came to be me.

Whenever I am away from home, I would feel incomplete. It is because my sense of home lies within mom. It is that certain feeling of security and belongingness that only she can fill. Mom is really a great mom. I am confident because she believes in me and she is honest about the way she feels. She would tell me if I look awesome or if I look devastated. She knows when something is wrong without me telling her about it. I guess that’s what they call mother’s instincts which eventually lead to mothers know best. Is it a result of getting nourishment through their umbilical cord or is is just a law of nature? Well, I really do not know. But I hope that whatever that is, I hope my kids and I would share the same connection.

It’s hard to admit that it’s only know that I have come to fully appreciate my mother. From her worrying nature to her warmth and loving ways to the nagging morning wake-up routine. Everything seems so beautiful now, her strengths and fallibility… She’s a woman. She’s my mom and my dad. And she’s so good at it you’d think she’s a pro. Love you mom.


My gift to my mom and mother-in-law:

My mother-in-law

My Mom, the bestest in the world

I made those using Photoshop. Thanks to the downloadable page kits available over the internet.

A lot of people greeted me on Mother’s Day. Too bad, I don’t know them all because my mobile phone was reformatted. Anyway, thanks to everyone who greeted me! Much love! Mommyness is pure happiness!


Parenting Yoga

May 16th, 2007 by

Photo credits:

I was reading about Yoga over the Internet and amazingly, after some Nth clicks, I was brought to a page about parenting yoga in Xiamen. It showed photos of a recent yoga session campaign in China, which endeavored ‘to tap the intelligence potential of the babies.’ I found it very interesting since one of the things Vito likes very much during his playtime with his dad resembles photo#3. It got me curious and was led to several more sites on yoga for kids.

Some points I got from my readings:

1. Babies receive many benefits from yoga, especially from the bond it fosters between parent and child.
2. Babies who move with freedom as well as intentional guidance learn early about relating to gravity and relating to people.
3. The physical contact of a loving adult fosters trust and starts baby on the lifelong journey of learning about relationships—to one’s self, to others, and to the world. This contact can also ease a young child’s nervous system while bolstering his immunity, circulation, and physical growth.
4. When children learn techniques for self-health, relaxation, and inner fulfillment, they can navigate life’s challenges with a little more ease.
5. Yoga with children offers many possibilities to exchange wisdom, share good times, and lay the foundation for a lifelong practice that will continue to deepen.
6. Yoga with baby can serve as a microcosm of our parenting as we experiment with how to be with our babies, read their cues, let go of our agendas, and respond to challenging moments in a safe, loving space.
7. People clean their bodies, but they don’t clean their minds. Paying attention and having quiet time to cleanse the mind needs to be a practice. If our children see us honor this, they will honor it also.

If you too are becoming interested in parenting yoga, read the full articles here: Yoga to Bolster Baby Development, Yoga for Kids, Mindful Parenting on and off the Mat

Vito’s 1st Swim

May 3rd, 2007 by

Being devoid of the faculty of swimming is one of my frustrations. Then, I married a man who, like me, cannot swim. The worst I could think of is for my kids to inherit the same incapacity.

Yesterday, I introduced Vito to swimming. I know it’s kind of late. Vito is already a year old. Others as early as a few months old are already exposed to swimming. I guess what really took me so long is my personal fear and the process of overcoming that fear for my little one.

I bought Vito a small pool and his own swimming trunks Monday evening. Then, yesterday, he finally had his initiation.

It is really heartwarming to see Vito learning to swim. It makes me think of the many things he can enjoy.

Being an environmentalist, I have always seen not being able to swim as a deficiency. It has robbed me the opportunity to fully enjoy nature, to confidently snorkel, dive, and try other water activities.

Vito, mum’s wish for you is that you’ll be able to experience life in all its beauty: breathtaking sceneries, interaction with nature, and being able to commune with the earth incessantly, without limits, without reservation.

Vito’s 1st Haircut and Digital Scrapbooking

April 27th, 2007 by

Being a first-time mom is really exciting. I remember the time I was on maternity leave, all I did was compile Vito’s special photos. I designed his album and wrote little notes on each memorable event from Vito’s point of view (e.g. The first time mom and dad brought me home, I was such a cry baby. I cried all night. Probably I was still adjusting to the environment. I’m used to having water all around me. I miss Mommy’s tummy.)

Yesterday, while I was on the Internet, I discovered the wonders of digital scrapbooking. After reading about it and finding free layout kits, I started to make my first ever digital scrapbook page - Vito’s 1st Haircut.

Vito just got his haircut after his 1st birthday. I was carrying my digital camera and my amateur photography skills with me while we were at the kids salon. I was anxious at first that Vito might not be that comfortable with seeing scissors and all but he was actually pretty cool about it. I think it helped that my hubby was there with him.

I think I’ll be doing more of this digital scrapbooking.

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