Thursday, November 30, 2006

When U Wish Upon...Your Aunt?

sometime in october, i told my aunt in vancouver that i saw in the net that one of scrapbook warehouse's location is in richmond where she lives. the store claims to be among the largest scrap store in canada. one month later, i received 2 separate packages from her. oh boy!, i felt like a kid again, uber excited to see what's in store for me. the pix that i took doesn't justify the stuff i got, which are these:

all scrap stuff, yehey!!!!
my cool aunt even included the receipts, one of which is super looooong. i almost fell off my seat when i totalled the bill to 350 can. $ +.

the cost of these 2 receipts could have gotten me my christmas wish: a cricut!!!!

for her generosity, i'm doing my aunt's scrap album. oh yeah, i love her dearly, w/ or w/o my loot.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

5 Years of Happy Misis & Counting

this entry was meant to be written last oct. 22. but several days before and even after oct. 22, husband & i were in utter lack of precious time. so what about that date? 5th wedding anniversary lang naman namin. thanks God, despite our busy sked, we were able to hear the very early morning mass at st. claire in katipunan & have dinner at moa. i recall, we had dinner at the pearl manila on our 1st, spent 2 nights at manila mandarin on our 2nd, gulfed a huge box of pizza on our 3rd & spent the whole day at the beach in binogawan on our 4th. 5 years hence, the joys of marriage...the joys of going back to our wedding day.
oct 20, 2001 - - - 2 days prior to wedding day (oras, samar)
in the evening, my younger sisters baby & jingle arrived from manila. they had loads of flowers straight from dangwa (read:calla llilies, mums, roses & stargazers) and my 3-layer vienna cake. yes, my sisters hand-carried the heavy, fondant cake. w/ them were auntie lina, auntie elen & uncle ted, all from vancouver. it was uncle ted's 1st philippine visit after about 30 years. i later learned that he carried 1 layer of the cake during the 1-hour manila-tacloban plane ride & 3.5 hrs. tacloban-oras land trip. oh how sweet of him. the cake must have been heavy that he suggested that my sisters better elope next time.
oct. 21, 2001 - - - 1 day more & it's wedding day!
everyone was busy at home (as reception was to be held in our backyard aka remedios garden). the florists from tacloban arrived past noon w/ a truckload of pillars & white life-sized cherubs. oh man, was i relieved? more than relieved. in the afternoon, we attended mass & had confession. the last time i confessed face to face a priest sans the tabing was before i had my first communion in grade 2! it felt like we were going to be executed! the church rehearsals followed & we headed home which proved to be even busier than i could ever imagine.
oct. 22, 2001 - - - wedding day!!!
i think it was about 4am when the dawn serenade passed by our house (read: a band playing soothing music goes around town as if saying 'hey people wake up. it's darlene's wedding!' [side kwento: we learned later in the day that uncle ted wanted to video-tape the dawn serenade, but was too late as the music was almost done when he woke up]).
by 9am, the heaven's poured rain! my tears fell w/ the drizzle. as i watch the rain in our balkon, uncle gerry joined me and said something like it will rain heavily in the morning so nothing will fall in the afternoon. i was relieved by his assurance (as if he can control heaven) . in my heart, i knew God will grant us a rain-free wedding. that very hour, my future husband then, was already being made up & had no choice but to abide by my rule that his preps be as maarte as mine. after his mock-preps, he slept!
my groom gets ready to wed
by 11am, the up-do of my entourage started. the hours ran so, so fast that i saw myself done, made-up & in the center of the standard wedding prep picture-taking session. when i went out of the room, my 3 nephews (anjo-9; jase-4 & jm-3) handed me my bouquet. oh how i love my nephews! my parents' role at this instance was to cover me w/ my veil.

aren't they cute? jm won't even let go of his lollipop!

as i was alighting our 100-yr old vintage stairs w/ tatay & nanay behind me, i couldn't hold back my tears. i'm the first cordero to ever alight that stairs in a wedding dress! (i mean, my grandma from whom my father & his siblings inherited the centennial house, alighted the same stairs in a wedding dress before she married a cordero, right?).

this used to be my giant slide!

as the bridal car (aka my sister's white toyota) was traversing the street across the church, i could see future husband at the church doors as if anticipating my arrival. my heart jumped. oh my! it's for real, i'm getting married (side kwento: i later learned that future husband's heart also jumped the first time he saw the bridal car). so would it not be too baduy to say that 2 hearts can really beat as 1?

the white figure at the church door is dear hubby

the sight of our lovely entourage in periwinkle and our ninangs in gray queuing outside the church made made really, really, really happy. i'm getting married na nga.

i just stayed in the car while our wedding party had their march. and when it was my turn, i had my cue to take my first step when i heard the first key of shania twain's 'from this moment' (read: in 2001, i didn't imagine it would be as gasgas as it is today). from the church door, i could hardly see the 10 faces at the altar beaming at me. 10 priests? yes, 10. we only expected the bishop, the church monsignor and a family-friend priest. the other 7 priests are all friends and their presence was a pleasant surprise. that included fr. nilo, who was vacationing from new jersey. who would not be happy? 10 priests on your wedding day? any bride would feel ecstatic.

2-layered veil barely covered my back!

but aren't the flowers amazing & cherubs heavenly?

i tried holding back my tears as i walked towards my parents. and when tatay 'gave' me to future husband, i could see my parents & future in-laws trying to hold back their tears. the many faces around us were also in tears. so i gave in. i knew i had to cry or else i'd have a heart attack. we will forever be grateful to these priests who blessed us on our wedding

when we reached our seats, futurehusband whispered 'tama na'. it meant, stop crying, the bishop is here. the bishop was all smiles when we got near him. maybe he was naaaliw with my halgulgol.

our wedding ceremony turned out as solemn as we wanted it to be. but in the end, the bishop had to ask me before the signed our marriage contract if i'm sure about marrying husband, to which i just smiled. i think he also asked husband the same thing. cool bishop indeed.

what an honor to have the bishop officiate our wedding!
that's me kissing the bishop's ring

after our 'official kiss', we hugged so, so tight that i could hardly breath. we both cried while the audience applauded. i think the captured picture of our embrace says it all.

believe me, husband never held me that tight. ever.

breaking the heartwarming moment w/ our cutie bearers & flower girls

we reached remedios garden before sunset. the beaming faces who received us were all familiar. what could be any happier than an occasion where family and friends are present. aaah, it's our wedding.

the last to enter, who else?

husband & i opted to say our 'thank yous' during the first part of the reception since we wanted all our guests to hear how grateful we are for their presence, for which reason, i could not help but shed a tear again.

instead of the the dove release, we 'released' candies from a hanging bell to the delight of our kiddie guests.

and oh, our vienna cake...we had it placed atop branches of a driftwood auntie lina salvaged in monbon beach in 1999. i also had a barbie doll in a wedding gown like mine, and a ken in barong stand in one of the branches. we thought the dolls could be our mini-us, but with husband's protruding tummy and barbie's extra-ordinary figure of 8, i doubt! yet still, no one could ever be more handsome than dear hubby that day. and he assured me that moi was all pretty. call that mutual respect (mutual admiration is an understatement).

our wedding cake w/ our mini-us on the right

after a series of 'kuratsa' and 'aminodos', and the sumptuous buffet prepared by the leyte park hotel chef and waiters we pirated for the event, and the overflowing wines, spirits and beer, with an instant sing-along seession on the side, we called it a night; i mean a day at 4am, october 23!

that's the visayan tradition of helping newlyweds start their new life together: shower of money while dancing the kuratsa

and the most important thing aside from the solemnity and privacy of our wedding, and the overflowing love from family and friends, it didn't rain on our parade!

really happy!

end of our wedding story. meanwhile, we continue our journey. so help us God.


there was one time i asked husband what he thinks of our 10th anniversary. he said it's just as simple as reaching the 10th year. but of course! hmmmp. so i go straight to the point: will we celebrate? i know? he smiled. i smiled back. that's actually how he proposed exactly 6 years ago. only that, now, the roles have been reversed.

a snapshot of our baguio honeymoon. that's me actually convincing husband that we renew our vows on our 10th year! (yes, ganun kaatat)

Monday, November 13, 2006

Home (Again) But Not Alone

for the 3rd time this year, hubby & i splurged on a vice we couldn't do without: visiting home. but again, i'd have to be thankful that cebu pacific still offers low fares. otherwise, waaaaaaaa....husband's pockets would be in a perpetual state of calamity. so, on oct 27, we flew to home-sweet-home. as expected, our home in paypayon was already in frenzy for the del rosario feast two days later. i was happy to see relatives help us out. as we ardently prayed, heavens afforded us a perfect weather. indeed God is good all the time.

our family was able to breath after oct 29. it was then that we enjoyed food....
manila-based nephew jase, playing around w/ rock lobsterrrr!

....frolic the waves of burakay....
my sister baby, nephews jm & jase, my sister inky & moi

....have good time at the beach even on a monday....
my nephew anjo was glued to his phone that he didn't notice
we were making fun of him, ahihihi

....enjoy the lush greens of our cagpajo farm....

that's our family traversing the san juanico-inspired bamboo bridge leading to aunt lina's bahay kubo in the hanging ropes exclusive for kids.... that's me w/ shannen, jm, inky & jase in the play area

....chitchat w/ aunt lina: the farm queen....

3rd from left is the reason for our visit: aunt lina

....bathe at the falls (locally called pisak ).... that's husband & cutie shannen.
obviously, that's not the falls. auntie had bamboo poles gather water from the falls. so if you are lazy to walk to the falls, that's the other end less the distance. shannen, after bathing at the falls, couldn't resist the hi-tech shower, ha ha!

....traverse the oras river from cagpajo to the town....our family fit in the speed boat, eeer, speed subiran.
i heard somebody say that the oras river is a better version of the loboc river in bohol.

(i noticed that no one cared to take a photo of our picnic. that could be a sign that in our family, food is priority; or matatakaw lang talaga.)

....and after 7 days, fly back to busy, crazy manila.

husband & jase in between their vivid discussion on how to buckle the seatbelt, adjust the seats, etc. barely 9 yrs, jase affirms he'll be able to travel back to oras alone.

our brief home visit also allowed us to spend all soul's day in oras after 13 years. just like the del rosario, nov. 2 was like a feast. my husband's family, the villalons, gathered at my father-in-law's musoleom were food was aplenty.

truly another memorable visit.

Friday, November 10, 2006

The Del Rosario Feast

[background: the feast of our lady of the most holy rosary (in short, del rosario), has been celebrated w/ flare in our quaint town in samar since the '30s. the daily dawn rosary & mass for the month of october is highlighted by a procession usually on the last sunday, by the del rosario image & ladies in filipiniana ternos (called the reginas) representing the 15 mysteries of the rosary (now, 20). all these is taken cared of by the year's hermana, who chooses the next regina who will replace her position. my mother 'inherited' her regina post from my paternal grandma. the regina draw lots to determine when they will be hermana. nanay got the 2006 slot. during the tedious preparation, my sisters & i realized that we were like preparing for another wedding: a full-color souvenir program/invitation; white umbrellas + miniature del rosario images for give-aways; cutie girls donning wings to shower the del rosario w/ confetti; fresh flowers from dangwa; hundreds of luminaries; the bishop to officiate the mass; a dinner-reception...the list is endless!]

oct. 28 - the reginas & hermana pasadas (past hermanas) coverged at our house to fetch the church's del rosario image (she has been staying in our house since january) w/ a mass at 3pm intended for the deposed hermana pasadas. we got a word from the parish that monsignor japzon will be an hour late. so it afforded our visitors more time for merienda cena & chitchat.

merienda cena at our garden w/ my sister chinky & niece shannen
manning the buffet table.
in gray dress is nanay welcoming her guests.

in background is our 105 yr old paternal ancestral house.

the del rosario image is our own: a gift from my paternal grandpa to my paternal grandma during her hermanaship many years back.

oct. 29 - the procession around town promptly took off at 3pm.

up front is the church's del rosario image, followed by our own image.

the cross bearers led the procession, followed by the color-coded reginas who were sheltered by white umbrellas. thanks to the holy cross studes.

the procession passed by our house where the del rosario images were showered w/ confetti.

in pomelo pink is the lovely hermana (ehem, my nanay) flanked by the out-going & in-coming hermanas.

that's our eldest sister dodit who now, is a regina w/ her really tall, 14 yr old son anjo, my parents' first ever apo.

at center in blue, is the most reverend bishop of eastern samar, his excellency leonardo medroso. for the record, that mass was the last he officiated in his capacity as bishop of e. samar as he is scheduled to hold another post middle of november. the church decor was really oh wow!

what was another oh wow, was the pleasant surprise to see many people join the procession. the church was also filled to the brim, much like standing room only! in fact, the single pew reserved for our family was already occupied by church-goers.

tatay even had to stand at the rear part of the church & i was thankful to see him later seated in a plastic stool. this explains why we were not able to have a family picture at the church: tatay, my bro-in-law jerome & husband had to rush home right after the mass ended because of the influx of people who rushed to the reception. the turn-out of guests was rather tremendous, of which we are truly grateful.

nanay w/ winged b-girl, benyl & shannen: 3 of the 8 cutie girls who showered the del rosario images w/ confetti.

our family.

as aptly put in the souvenir program: our heartfelt gratitude to all those who helped make this year's del rosario feast a success.