Thursday, December 6, 2012

Another Milestone

... and NOT the good milestone kind.

Monday: Lucas had a small mosquito bite-like thing near his upper lip. I decided not to put anything on it because it is quite near his lips and whatever I put on the bite might accidentally find its way inside his mouth. My big mistake here was not warning him NEVER EVER to touch it.

Tuesday: I came home from the office and Lolo G reported two things: (1) Lucas has a swollen left cheek and (2) Lucas Felipe, one of his friends from school, punched him on the cheek. I was honestly a bit hesitant to believe him because Lucas Felipe seems like a sweet boy when I met him and well, he's a lot smaller than my Lucas. I already suspected that the swelling might be from the bite.

Wednesday: Just to confirm, we brought Lucas to school to talk to his teacher. For one, I am thinking that if someone punches Lucas, my son probably provoked him. If not, then the teacher should talk to the other boy's parents to inform them of their son's behavior. When we talked to his teacher, we were assured that no punching happened. They probably were just playing. My son, in a separate conversation, confirmed this. (Oh, how I felt was worthy of another post). If no punching happened, the swelling must be because of the bite. To cut the long story short, Lucas, JJ and I ended up waiting at the school clinic for the pedia. After the check-up, we were asked if we can see his pedia that day. Cannot do because his pedia does not have clinic hours on Wednesdays. She told us to go to the ER and that the doctors there will call our pedia anyway. NO EXPLANATION WHATSOEVER. We brought Lucas back to class and Lolo G just brought Lucas to our cousin pedia after lunch that day. Ate Mai prescribed antibiotics but Kuya Larry said that if the swelling increases, we must bring him to the ER asap.

Thursday:  By 1:30 AM, we woke Lucas up for his medicines. We weren't sure if the swelling increased so we just packed up and decided to bring him to the ER. When the doctor-on-duty saw him, confinement was her immediate recommendation saying that the swelling was within the dangerous triangle zone sorrounding the nose area and that infections there might affect the brain :-( Quite scary stuff. So, Lucas was admitted in the hospital for the first time. Preparing him for IV treatment was really challenging (there were 3 nurses plus me and JJ) but everything was a breeze from there. What's positive here was that apart from the swelling, Lucas was his old self. Chatty, malikot and he still eats.

Friday:   Still under observation. Not much change in the swelling on his face. I guess medicines were yet to take effect by this time.

Saturday: An ENT was sent by his pedia. He recommended that the abscess be removed via incision (minor surgery). Due to our son's age (resistance, possibility of trauma), the procedure will be done while Lucas is under general anesthesia. We weighed the pros and cons of having the abscess removed surgically and if we just let it run its course naturally. The doctors we consulted said that the best option really is to have it removed surgically. This will mean faster healing for my son.

Sunday:  By 9 AM, we were already at the surgery area. JJ accompanied him inside and he was only sent out after Lucas fell asleep, before the surgery began. The procedure lasted for less than an hour. When Lucas was inside the recovery room already, JJ called and asked me to go to the recovery area as Lucas was looking for me. I was happy to see my baby and I guess he was glad Mommy's there because he stopped being fuzzy and fell asleep after a few minutes.
8:58 PM Sunday: My son ate his dinner already and is happily watching Thomas videos on his daddy's Ipad. I am really glad the minor surgery was over and that we'll probably be discharged tomorrow :-)

Funny Lucas Moments

We had to measure his wiwi and we were a given a cup to use. The first time he made wiwi in the cup he said, "Mommy, I will not drink that....".  :-)

When my dad asked him if he wanted  to go home already he said, "Uhmm, no Lolo...". (Lagot. Mukhang hindi na namin puedeng ipantakot ang hospital stay whenever he doesn't want to take his medicines...)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Little Vallesteroses

It's been said lots of times but I will dare to say it again. When it comes to our children, time really does fly so fast.
Case in point: Here's my Lucas. All grown up. (Well, okay. He's just 4. But still, I cannot help but compare him to the 6-month old baby who looks at me then like I am his next meal (which, at that time, I admittedly am in  a way...)

 Last October 1. Bonding with cousins @ Rub Ribs
Our littlest. Eugene's look-a-like, Alexa
Kuya Lucas and our little princess
Fast forward to October 26. We took advantage of the long weekend by driving up to Tagaytay to celebrate our birthdays. We had lunch at Tootsie's and had dessert at Bag of Beans.
 Kuya Einar, Kuya Enrico, Lucas and Alexa @ Tootsie's
 Alexa's chubby kagigil cheeks. Another case on how fast they grow, this pic and the one of her above were taken just three weeks apart. See how she grew?
 The boys on our way home from the fun trip.
I still remember when JJ and I were just bf/gf. Kuya Einar was around Lucas's age and Kuya Enrico was just weeks old when i first met them, look at them now. Binata na.
Hay. Can we selectively stop time?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lucas's 4th Birthday Party

Here are the highlights of Lucas's 4th Birthday Party. It was a family-only party (much as we want to invite all our friends, we just have to meet our set budget...) that our little boy obviously enjoyed.

Family picture before his party started
Lucas and Kuya Migs

Our pamangkins as game participants

Uh oh.. no  more chair?

 Lucas's chocolate cake from Shopwise
Jollibee was extra kulit that day. He had tons of funny poses with the kids
Lucas's favorite part of the party
Happy 4th Birthday anak. Love love.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Lucas's 4th Birthday

Our little boy is now four (4) years old!

He was quite content with his chocolate cake. I guess, as long as it has lots of candles :)

 He asked Lolo G to light the candles 4 times... of course, we sang Happy Birthday all those times

 He was looking forward to his gifts... we've been giving him hints on what he's bound to get

From Ninong B, Flynn the Fire Truck

Happy 4th Birthday sweetheart. Daddy and Mommy love you very much.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Lolo G and Lola E's Olympic Babies...

I find it quite amazing that all four (4) of Lolo G and Lola E's grandkids are born on "Olympics" years.

If they will go by where the Olympics was held the year they were born, our Kuya Einar will be named Sydney. Kuya Enrico will be Athens. Lucas will be Beijing and our little Alexa will be named London.

SYDNEY: Einar (February 20, 2000) 

ATHENS: Enrico (July 20, 2004) 

BEIJING: Lucas (August 15, 2008)

LONDON: Alexa (July 11, 2012)

Wonder if the family's next little one will wait until 2016's Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro...

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Arts and Crafts

Since we minimized Lucas's TV time, it was imperative that we give him something else to do. Lola E started with watercolor painting which Lucas enjoyed. After a few days, I searched the net and inquired from fellow N@wies on the best sites for arts and crafts apt for preschoolers. I got a lot of good sites (Thanks Clarice!) and I'll definitely try the activities I found one of these days.

At the moment, we are working on alphabet crafts. I found a lot of good ideas from Here are the letters that Lucas did last week:

A = Alligator
B = Bee
C = Carrot
D = Dragon

Lucas had fun doing the letters and now looks forward to his "Arts and Crafts" sessions with Lola E. Last Saturday, when we went out and dropped by National Bookstore to buy more stuff for his afternoon activities, he was very excited and kept on getting glitters and colored pencils :-) Earlier today, he requested that we make a robot.

Lucas and his masterpiece for the day

Looking forward to more of your artworks sweetie pie :)

Thank you Lola for patiently teaching Lucas :)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Lucas's First Day in School

To my delight, Lucas's first day in school was a complete success :) There was a little challenge when the little boy refused to wear his shoes and leave the bed while repeatedly chanting, "I am still sleepy Mom...". I just gave him a few minutes and proceeded to the task of putting his shoes on. After that, he was okay and gamely ate his cereals for breakfast.

Lola's garden. While waiting for his school bus.

He got his lunch box at Alexa's birthday party last weekend. The front sticker says "Girl Power". But he likes it more than his Cars lunch box so we let him use it. JJ just placed Thomas and Friends stickers all over to make it, err, more manly.

I rode with him in the schoolbus as we want him to get used to it. JJ just followed in our car. We got in school early but lots of little kids were there with us waiting.  In fact, we were sorrounded by little kids saying hi to their classmates. They looked excited to be back in school (which I think is a good thing). It was nice to note that the place was pretty secure with a very nice ladyguard looking after the kiddos.

The preschool area opened at 7AM and Lucas's Teacher Millet was in their classroom already. To test our little boy, we left Lucas to his teacher's care though we can stay for a while longer. He was completely alright when we left and said goodbye without tears :) Yey! I was honestly prepared to bribe my way out of a dramatic goodbye scene (capsule Thomas was ready!).

We had breakfast nearby while waiting for his class to end. I kept on asking JJ if he thinks Lucas is doing fine. I think he wanted to roll his eyes when I asked the same question twice or thrice during the meal :)

And come 9AM, our boy's smiling face tells us that the day went splendidly. Whew! We survived the first day :)

Here he is on our ride home.

We're so proud of you little boy.

Conversations with Lucas

Lucas: I love you mom!
Mom: I love you too!
Lucas: I am not too. I am Lucas!

Mom: If you will have a baby brother, what would you like to call him?
Lucas: Uhhmm. Thomas!
Nyay! Well, at least hindi Salty or Duck...
Mom: If you'll have a baby sister?
Lucas: Dora!
Hahaha! I made him choose from three names na lang. So far, consistent naman siya sa name na pinipili niya.

Monday, June 11, 2012


The 2012 French Open Men's Final is bound to make history, no matter the outcome. On one hand, Novak could be just the third player in history to hold all four major titles at the same time. On the other, Rafael could break Bjorn Borg's (and his!) record of 6 French Open titles.

Lucky for Rafa fans, it was the Spaniard who went on to win his record 7th Roland Garros title.

 An anti-climactic double fault from Djokovic sealed Nadal's fate.

The clay-court maestro

Next stop, Wimbledon!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Who Let the Dog Out?

Apparently, NO ONE let it out. Someone just threw a coconut at it. And that SOMEONE happened to be my dear son. So what happens when one does that? That someone can escape unscathed or that someone can get BIT. Sadly, the latter was what actually happened :( I've asked myself countless times how could that incident happen? We were just there. But they said boys will be boys and that one cannot be in the same place as your kid 100% of the time. I know that. But still, it was heartbreaking.
It happened last Holy Week in Tarlac while we were visiting my Tito Boy and Tita Susan. The dog, thankfully, is one of their pets. But to be sure, we brought the little guy to the nearest hospital and had him administered with the anti-rabies vaccine. Funny thing, after his initial drama over the dog bite, he was more upset over the fact that we CAN go home to Manila sooner than planned. Kids.

He was okay hours after the incident. He was off running and playing with his cousins again once we got back from the hospital. Understandably, he was a little wary of the dogs during our entire stay. His anti-rabies shot was completed middle of May. Now that it is over and done with, I'd like to share some things that I've learned:
1. After the bite, clean the wound with detergent soap.
2. Have the first anti-rabies vaccine as soon as possible. Rush to the nearest hospital or Animal Bite Center.
3. Within a week from the incident, the doctors will recommend that you take the human rabies immunoglobulin. Lucas was given Berirab. This one's expensive and the dosage depends on the weight of the patient. Lucas was given two vials. Given the cost, we had to verify with JJ's cousin if we really had to give it to Lucas. Unfortunately for our pockets, Kuya Larry said it is much better to have it. Better safe then sorry right?
4. If you're from the South, you can go to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) for the succeeding anti-rabies vaccines. The cost is 50% less compared to hospitals. You just have to be there early to line up. You may reach RITM at 809-75-99 for any queries.
5. You can get the vaccines for free. Contact your municipal health centers. I inquired from the Muntinlupa City Hall and the procedure goes like this:
 - Go to your Barangay Health center and secure an endorsement
 - Go to the City Health Center to secure approval
 - Once you secure the City Health Center's approval, you may proceed to the Bayanan Health Center where they administer the vaccine or RITM if the Bayanan Health Center runs out of the vaccine.
But please, if you can afford to pay for the vaccine, please go to RITM instead of availing the shots for free. Other people who cannot afford the shots might need it more than you do. Please also note that the procedure is different per municipality.

So there. Hope this post helps.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Thomas and Friends CapsuleToys

or Gashapon as I believe they are also called.

It will be an understatement if I say that Lucas likes Thomas and Friends. Obsessed is more like it! But the toy lover in my husband indulges our son's love of toys. Apart from the Plarail and wooden series, Lucas also loves to play with those small Thomas wind-up toys that come in capsules.

 Wind up Thomas, James, Scruffey, Annie and several trucks

 Wind up Percy and Plarail Duncan

Plarail Percy and Wind up Percy

Some of Lucas's wind up toys: Dodge, Hiro, Percy, Bertie the Bus, Percy, Annie, boats and Kevin

As you know, getting the nice toys from the machine comes with a bit of luck and well, trying so many times. For this reason, we have lots of excess characters including:
1 James
1Thomas with snowplow
4 Annie
2 Scruffey
1 Toad
1 Bertie the Bus
1 Turntable (from another series)
1 Kevin (crane)
Several track accessories (tunnel, tracks, etc.)

In case you are collecting too and have lots of excess characters , let me know. We'd be more than willing to trade if you guys have something that we do not have yet (which is a lot! andami palang iba-ibang series). If you want to buy, we also sell at cost :)

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Iceman is Back!

He started the race in 16th place BUT finished in 7th place! :)

 Team Lotus

Iceman on track

Now that Kimi's back in F1, I'd surely be watching the races again with hubby. I am sure JJ would find ways to annoy me by saying not so nice things about Kimi and his capabilities as a driver but I'd just say, "Bring it on...". :)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Baguio 2012

We headed off to Baguio City to celebrate our 13th year :) We stayed in one of our office's staff houses and I was luckily assigned the biggest unit! With all that space, I decided to invite my side of the family to sort of celebrate my mom's birthday in advance.

We were up and about by 5 AM. I double checked the stuff we packed the night before while JJ was busy preparing our baon for the long trip. We figured its better to stop just for restroom breaks and just have lunch in Baguio. By 6:45 AM, we were on the road. The drive was uneventful (thankfully!) and after about 6 hours (because of the tricycles) we were finally in the City of Pines. We dropped by the house first and I took the opportunity to do room assignments. After that we went to SM Baguio to have lunch and buy groceries.

After lunch, I got a call that my parents and my brother's family are already at the staff house.  

 My nephews Matty and Miggy, Popsy and Momsy and SIL Meng

 Family picture (after Daddy's nap :) )

My other brother, Tom, and his family arrived by 2AM Saturday. Our bunso arrived by 4AM. Finally, family's complete.

After breakfast, we took the kids to Burnham Park.

 Boat ride

Picnic spot in Burnham

Taken by little Matty: Hubby and I, Carmy and Tom & Meng and Teejay

 By the play area at Burnham

After Burnham, we decided to go back to the house to have lunch. The rest of the day was spent lounging around the house and well, eating :)

 Me and my siblings with Popsy

Kiddos were content to eat ice cream and watch movies

Except for JJ, Lucas and I, everyone travelled back to Manila that day. After breakfast, we decided to squeeze in one more trip and took the kids to the Botanical Garden. The garden was nice, with a lot of space for the kids to run around. Merchandise was cheaper there too (cheaper strawberry jams, chopping boards, etc. But the broom is still much cheaper at the public market). It was a short trip as everyone had to finish packing. Time really flies so fast! Seems like moments ago when we first stepped into the house and now, 2 days have already gone by.

My Lugue Family

 Lolo Popsy with Lucas

Chissa and I with Momsy and Popsy

Me and hubby

It was so quiet in the house when everyone else left. By mid-afternoon, our little family was off to buy stuff from Good Shepherd and finally back to SM to have dinner. As there were only three of us left at the house, tinamad na kami to cook. After dinner, we just enjoyed the cool climate by staying in our room and watching TV.

We were up early because we had to go to the market to buy stuff like peanut brittle and veggies. By 8 AM we were all packed and ready to go. I was a little sad before we left the house as leaving meant vacation over na. After saying our thank yous to the house caretakers, we took our last set of pictures.
My boys

Goodbye Baguio...

And yup, we will be back again soon...

Sunday, March 11, 2012

8 Foods That Keep You Full

by Camille Noe Pagan (Glamour September 2011 issue)

1. EGG
For just 70 calories, an egg delivers more than 6 grams of protein. One study found that women who ate eggs for breakfast lost more weight than those who had bagels with the same number of calories, possibly because all that protein kept their hunger in check. The egg eaters reported more energy too!

Studies show that food containing a lot of water can keep you feeling full. And when you start a meal with soup, you activate brain signals that begin to tell you you've had enough to eat - so that  by the time you finish your second course, you'll be satisfied. "Go for a broth-based bowl with fiber-rich veggies like celery and spinach," says Amy Jamieson-Petonic, RD.

Their healthy monosaturated fats may help slow the rate at which your stomach empties. They're also loaded with folate, potassium and Vitamin E, and early research suggests that foods containing these nutrients may be more satiating than others.

Seventeen grams of protein in a 6-ounce container (that's more than you get in four slices of turkey!) mean major hunger control.

All that filling fiber (4 grams per half-cup serving in the old-fashioned variety; 3 grams in the instant) helps this breakfast stick to your ribs. It also provides a surprising 4 to 7 grams of protein (the steel-cut kind typically has the most) - and that's before you add milk. For extra staying power, toss in blueberries, which have 4 grams of fiber per cup.

Only 80 calories, but one can be as filling as a meal because of the 4 grams of fiber and high water content.

Eat them and you may end up eating less of everything else. They're high in protein - about 7 grams per half cup - and high in complex carbohydrates, the type that takes longer to break down.

They have the perfect combination of fiber, protein and fat. The best include walnuts, pistachios and almonds. Just stick to an ounce or less to avoid calorie overload.


1. The three C's
Cookies, crackers and croissants! Those processed sugary carbs tend to cause hunger rebound.

2. Alcohol
Famished after happy hour? It's not just your willpower: Booze can spike your appetite, experts say.

3. Cereal
Many are high in hunger-producing sugar and little else. Look for protein and fiber like in Kashi GoLean.

4. "Diet" Foods
Some frozen dinners, for example, actually have too few calories and not enough filling fruits and veggies

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Lucky 13

Yup, it's our 13th year as a couple :)

Took a trip down memory lane by unearthing some of the pics we included in our AVP during our wedding.

 At Tito Jun and Tita By's house. I think this was in 2002 or 2003.

 By the beach. For some reason, this is one of my favorite pics.

 At our godson George's first birthday party. George is JJ's one and only inaanak to date

JJ and I are friends since we were in high school but we only became a couple when we were in college. So, I treasure the pics below. Who would have known back then that we'd end up married? ;-)
 Senior Prom. Yes, it was held in the school quadrangle with our principal walking around the "dance floor" with a flash light commenting on and separating couples who she feels are dancing too close :)

 Grad Ball '97

 Enchanted Kingdom '98

We put more effort into celebrating this anniversary compared to how we celebrate our wedding anniv. This time, we decided to go out of town with my family. We're headed off to the City of Pines this coming weekend. I can't wait! It will be Lucas's first time to go there. I admit I am excited too as I haven't been there since 2003.

I hope the weather will cooperate :)