Virtue versus Indulgence

Monday, October 5, 2015

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For some reason this line by C.S. Lewis which I read from his book Mere Christianity (perhaps one of my favorite Lewis books; I am reading it with my discipleship group until end of this year), reminds me of the verse: For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:11)

While works is not the basis of God’s love for us, meaning our ability to do good and abide by His commands are not the foundation of His love and mercy for us, I still find that His ways are so powerful in the sense that we are able to receive its benefits even if we are doing it for the wrong reasons.

Virtue, for example, instead of indulgence, does not earn me a higher score for admittance in heaven and God’s favor. Nevertheless virtue trains me to think highly and teaches me self-control. On the other hand indulgence only gives me momentary happiness — fleeting and fleeing without even leaving a lesson but only much questions and confusion. (Think virtue to stay physically pure versus indulging in sexual pleasure outside of marriage; or the virtue to eat only what you need to versus gluttony.)

Just a little food for thought to start another week for all of us! Happy Monday! May this week be kinder to us than the last one. :)

Psalms, Letters, Colors

Saturday, October 3, 2015


New Psalm to memorize for me and my girls! Due on October is Psalm 91.

Proud to say I wrote this from my head, without peeping from my Bible…Well, I did a little bit, perhaps once or twice. Hahaha! :)

I tried to do a more freestyle kind of calligraphy using a dip pen. I did wet on wet kind of watercoloring for background the night before I wrote a part of Psalm 91 on it.

Because of my frequent watercolor and lettering posts lately that somebody asked me if I went to art class and my answer is YES and NO.

When I was younger, I did go to art classes. At a young age my mom noticed I could draw and paint so I went to some of those classes with different teachers. However I never got to really pursue it and its been years since I last had any formal training on art. Now lettering was a hobby in grade school — I would always just copy different types from the Speedball textbook, and do freestyle in the back part of my notebooks.

Recently I attended two workshops though that made me want to try my hand at drawing and art and lettering again. The watercolor workshop by Googlygooeys and calligraphy 101 with Miss Milona Barraca. Then I got hooked watching different videos online that feature watercolor and lettering.

So there goes my answer and I am actually hoping to pursue formal watercolor classes when time permits me. It is strangely therapeutic. I am loving it. If you actually have suggestions, of people to follow on IG or YouTube and art classes to attend, do leave information below! :) Have a great Saturday!

Thick Presence

Friday, October 2, 2015

So I get Friday off as a mom, and on as a blogger. I have long been postponing all things concerning my redesign project and thanks to my amazing partner in all this, Rhiza Oyos, for reminding me IT’S TIME TO GET THINGS DONE.

So it will be up soon, I pray you all will like the new look and content.

But that’s not my topic today. Today I wanna talk about PRESENCE.

So like I said, it’s my off as momma and so that means the boy is some place else for the day. He is at his Nana’s, where he will spend the day singing worship songs, playing with Vito (he is a Shitzu, haha), and eat all the food he cannot have when I am around.

Moment he left I enjoyed the peace and quiet that I have here at home. I can doodle without anyone tugging my elbow or knocking off my inks. I can memorize Psalm 91 out loud without hearing about ten mama’s in the span of 60 seconds or less. Can you tell that I am really enjoying this?

However, everytime I would pull a chair or pass by his room, I tiptoe and do things quietly as if he was just there. As if he was asleep and careful should I be lest I wake him. I was probably doing this for about 30 minutes until I caught myself so.


Then I realized that even if Philip had already left to go to his Nana’s, his presence was just too thick that it started to dictate my movements even if he isn’t around. It also led me to think about the presence of God. Is His presence thick enough for it to dictate the way I go about everything in life?

The other thing is that Philip’s presence is so imprinted on me because of how intimate we are. I spend too much time with my son that even when he isn’t around, I move as if he was just at my bosom. Many mothers say this, too, especially about newborns. Some even begin to lactate just as the thought of their babies, because the presence we feel spiritually and think in our heads is able to manifest bodily.

But it must be said that its basis is the deep bond you form from the very beginning – of spending days and nights solely with the babe, prioritizing, losing sleep over just to care and nurture and to give your all. There is really no way but to fall in love when we invest that much. Remember that where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Time and effort are treasures and when we give much of those to something or someone, our hearts will be there also.

And I write this today to encourage all the willing souls out there. If you feel like you are so off track with God’s ways and find your stubborn self disobeying uncontrollably, S p e n d TIME with THE LORD. Bond with Him enough to receive His presence so thick that it will help you to move in His ways quite naturally and gracefully.

With that let me go back to my work. I have far too may things to finish and I pray your Friday will be just as peaceful as mine! Blessings!

a man with an obsession

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

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I think it’s a great day to ask ourselves, “What am I so obsessed with?” 

Is it designer bags? Shoes? Clothes? Paper and pens? Books? 

Or maybe it is immaterial like sexual intercourse? Relationships? Boys? Girls? Work? Career? Success? Money? And perhaps these things that underlie the things above: attention? Fame? Dieting? Knowledge? 

I ask because there is so much truth in this quote by my favorite C.S.Lewis. Truly, if we have an obsession, it takes very little convincing for us to buy into it — even when it is beginning to hurt us.

In debt with the designer upkeep? Unable to save for the rainy days? 

Marital problems? Infidelity? Lack of focus? Insecurity? Envy? Paranoia? Greed? Insecurity? Disappointment? 

And the bigger problem is that the enemy will try to do everything to make the obsession look so appealing and worth it for you. Though there is the one and only obsession the enemy does not want you to get into, which is the one and only thing I consider good for us to be totally crazy about. And that can only be God. 

We can never out-give God. No matter how crazy we are about Him, it still falls short. This shouldn’t be a surprise since we are talking about a Supreme God. So there is no such thing as over-obsessing with Him. Because He is infinite, we never actually get to exhaust Him no matter how hard we try.

Moreover, He is good. Obsessing about Him can only lead us to the right path. He is the only One who rewards for earnest seeking.

While all else in the world will pretend to give but actually take away. 

Sex asks for much and in the end we are destroyed as we obsess about it. Acquiring things makes us feel full but in fact much money has gone out of our hands. Relationships fail us one time or another, and though some are disappointments of a lower degree, putting our entire hope on people will only end in discoveries that not even the person we consider to be best in the world will ever be enough to satisfy an obsession.

Only God satisfies. Moreover, only God goes beyond our expectations. 

As a married person, I know that not even my husband is worthy and good enough to make as an obsession. And he knows not to make me one, too. Being each other’s obsession will only make us expect to be god to each other and we both know for sure that we are far from it. But as we both put our all on God, we are mercifully and gracefully transformed into loyal and covenantal partners for life.

May you have a lovely Wednesday!

Power Baths!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Philip’s first words were Mama and Papa. And Philip’s first phrase was “Thank you.” (Of course it sounded more like “Ankoo.”) When he said this, he was still so small and so I was surprised. He actually repeated the words after me as I was towel drying him fresh from bath. I usually say thank you when he obeys me, when he helps me by not giving me a hard time and staying still while dressing him up after ligo.

After that moment, many others followed. Philip actually learns many things during bath time! He learned “hot” and “cold” as we play with the temperature of the water. He also knows how to step “inside” the shower, and also “outside.” Additionally he knows how to step “onto the mat” so he does not slip on the wet floors.

As I wash parts of his body I would also repeat their labels, “Give me your HANDS, Philip,” or “Close your EYES,” or “Hold on to the wall and I will soap your FEET.”

Aside from instructions, it was during bath time when I first noticed him using his imagination. He was making the bottles talk to one another and also fight with one another, haha. Sometimes, he would even make them stand one on top of the other, subjecting them into some kind of balancing act!

Speaking of balancing, his recent discovery is that he can balance on one leg by resting his foot from the other leg somewhere between the standing leg’s ankle and calf. (Kinda like a tree pose in yoga.) I don’t have any idea on how and when and where from and why he knows this, but he does and it is pretty amazing to watch him discover so much more even in one simple bath time!

Because of this observation and Johnson and Johnson’s campaign to inform all moms na “Hindi basta ligo and ligo,” and that bath times can be so much more, I’ve tried to list down a few things which I think will help to make our children get the most of a simple ligo!


1. Seize the moment!

Babies, especially approaching toddler stage onwards, love being in the water! (Lalo na dito sa Pilipinas! Also, see my photo below!) Such fun environment makes them so open to learning so take advantage and teach them new things while they are in that state. Repeat labels, teach them new words, ask them questions even if they can’t answer yet, let them talk back, let them sing!

2. Make it fun when it’s not!

And if in case it isn’t as fun as all other days then make it so! Sing, dance, stomp your feet, play with the water, with its temperature and make it a game for him to feel and touch!

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From start all the way to when you are drying and dressing and applying moisturizer on baby, talk, talk, talk. Sometimes what I do is that I pray for my baby out loud. This way my thoughts are focused on him and I can easily transmit my deep care and love for him that way.

I just wanna encourage moms of younger babies that since Philip was an infant I would consistently talk to him even when he couldn’t talk back. And true enough, Philip has a large vocabulary today! At 20 months old he knows words like sorry, alright, seat, books, read, try, funny, guitar, star, heart, lying down, and even knows the difference between this, there and that!

4. Above all, don’t forget LOVE.

Ang haplos ng pagmamahal ay iba talaga. When moisturizing baby after bath, think of how much you love him and immediately your caresses will translate the energy of love. <3 Everything we do, big and small, is largely affected by what we truly feel so go ahread and muster all the love that you can and you’ll see na hindi lang talaga basta-basta ang ginagawa nation when done with great love!

Again, hindi lang basta ligo ang ligo, Mommies! Make the most out of this time. Before they hit the stage when they would do everything to skip baths! (Welcome adolescence na yun hahaha!)

Have a great day!

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