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2018 Hongkong Highlights

Christmas is always a busy but really fruitful and meaningful season for us. We enjoy doing Advent activities daily, getting ready for Jesus’ birthday. One of them is writing down what we are thankful for for the year. This time, we did it by month. I wrote down in my March box our trip to Hongkong.

Yes, I love traveling with my family. Yes, I love going to Disneyland. But what I loved most about our trip was that I had one on one time with each member of my family. Precious memories. ❤️

King and I went out alone for a walk, to see what were in the shops and where we could take the kids. Thankfully our hotel was in a pretty good location, and my mom was with the girls. It’s refreshing to just chill and spend alone time with the hubby, even if it’s just for an hour. The weather was nice and cool too. 🐽

Noelle was sick on day 1 but I think it was day 2 or 3 that we had a chance to take a walk and shop for some things for herself as well. It was a blessing in disguise that Danae was too sleepy to come along that Noelle and I had some time together. 🐼

Noelle loves pandas. Notice her shirt. 🐼

Danae and I also had some time checking out stores, while King went into a separate store. She got to buy ice cream from an ice cream truck.🍦

And then on one evening, she came with King and I to Temple street for the night market. She and I walked back to the hotel alone while King waited for some yummy take out food — Yang Chow, Spicy Pork, Lemon Chicken, Steamed fish and broccoli! 🥘

Our best meal in the city, considering all other meals from McDo, KFC and Burger King. 😂 I do miss their McDonald’s Spicy Wings, which we don’t have here.

And then Disneyland. I love Disney. I love Mickey. I love Disneyland! It makes me all giddy inside. BUT… I doubt I’d enjoy it at all if my family was not with me. And it was Gianna’s first time — a dream come true for her! She was so excited to go to Disneyland that once when we were going to a mall, she asked if we were going to see Buzz there. She kept telling me she wanted to go to Disneyland, until my mom said she’d take her there. What a blessing my mom is! 😇

Gianna and I enjoyed riding Slinky together! Danae and Noelle rode together. I wasn’t sure how Gianna would react, since her ate Noelle cried when it was her first time, but she didn’t! I was so proud of her. And of Noelle too because she didn’t get scared this time. 👏🏼

King and Danae went on the Star Wars Space Mountain ride, so I took Noelle and Gianna to meet one of the Star Wars characters. It was R2D2! I loved how Noelle was beyond excited to have her picture taken with him. 🤖

Noelle was a fan of Star Wars for a while. Disneyland was a great place to get some merch. I dunno if her shirt can be seen but it is a Star Wars shirt. She’s also wearing a Star Wars cap, bought here.

Danae and I rode the new roller coaster in Grizzly Gulch. It was soooo much fun! I thought it was mild enough for Noelle to ride at first, but boy was I wrong. I was laughing the whole time, while Danae was screaming 😂

Thank you Lord for our Hongkong trip, but most of all thank You for my family. None of us is perfect, and our relationships are rocky at times, but You have blessed me indeed. Every year, I will be grateful for them. ❤️

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34

Family, My Kids

Mommy Writes

Mommy’s turn!

The first time I encountered “it” was when Danae was around 2 years old. She wasn’t in any pain. She was actually just singing her heart out in the shower. I immediately called my aunt, who is a pediatrician, and she confirmed my fears. “It” was a hernia. I instantaneously cried over the phone, knowing that surgery was the only way to fix it. I did not want my baby to have to go through something like that.

But because it never gave her any problems — no pain, no changes in her bodily functions — and because I guess we were foolishly hoping it would resolve on its own, it took us 8 years to finally consult a pedia surgeon. The birth defect (not an injury) needed to be closed so that she could safely do gymnastics and other activities. Though it was not an emergency situation, we wanted it done a.s.a.p.

They humored her request! We joked that we are in the business of making dreams come true. She said, yay! Tomorrow, another dream is coming true. My surgery will be done! 🙂

 

I believe in the Lord’s timing, and I believe that though it seems late, Danae’s surgery was done at the right time. She’s more mature now, and she understands why it was necessary. She has always been brave, but God supplied her with so much courage and grace to endure this. I had to put a brave face on for her the whole time because I am not brave! With so many thoughts entering my head and fears threatening to disable me, I enlisted our family and a lot of friends to pray for and with us. That, and the peace of God that transcends understanding, certainly kept me standing.

There was no question that I would be the one staying with Danae in the hospital, and King would be shuttling back and forth to hospital and home. I’m so thankful that when it comes to family matters like this, it’s never hard for King to ask for a leave. It became a time of bonding for me and Danae. She got to have mommy (and daddy at certain hours) all to herself. I was happy to serve and help her. The two younger ones were safe at home with my mom during the day and with King in the evening.

When it was time to have her IV inserted, she was afraid. My outgoing, brave, confident, independent young lady became a timid, nervous, needy baby who wanted mommy to hug and hold her as they put the needle in. She cried in pain. She cried also through the pesky skin test. I wanted to cry too haha, but I was the adult. I needed to be strong for her. I just kept comforting her, encouraging her. It was late, but when she asked for TV, I obliged. As my mom advised, I helped keep her spirits up.

In the morning, while waiting, the anesthesiologist came in. All this time (I even signed papers to consent to it), we thought she would be given General Anesthesia. They could, but because of the asthma factor, it was more risky having a tube in her throat. Apparently that’s how GA is administered. They put you to sleep and then insert a tube in your throat for the gas to go through. When the anesthesiologist suggested spinal anesthesia, since she is physically big enough for it (he said that she’s big for her age — he should see a lot of her taller friends haha), I was not able to hide my apprehension. That was the same anesthesia I received, giving birth to Gianna. Could my Danae handle that? But the doctor assured us that they would do what we were most comfortable with. Thank God we had time to decide. Thank God King was there. I would never want to make major decisions like that on my own. We agreed that spinal anesthesia was safest for Danae.

About to be wheeled down to the surgery unit. Nervous but still smiling. 🙂

 

As she was being wheeled from her room to the surgery unit, she kept calling me, making sure I was right with her. She wanted me to be the one in the waiting area with her, and in the recovery room afterwards. I asked the anesthesiologist if he could sedate her while still in the waiting area, and he was kind enough to do it. He understood that Danae was nervous about being wheeled into the OR without me. He even agreed with me in prayer when I prayed for Danae while he was putting the sedative in her IV.

About an hour and a half later, surgery was done. I was right outside the door when they called for Lucero. The surgeon met me inside, told me that it took longer than expected because her hernia was so small. She said that small hernias are more dangerous because intestines are more likely to get trapped. God’s grace right there! Nothing of the sort happened to Danae all these years! The surgeon was happy also to say that Danae didn’t even flinch when the spinal anesthesia was given to her. She did great!

When I saw Danae, however, I saw her eyes closed but wet with tears. She kept talking but tears kept running down her cheek. I knew she wasn’t in pain, but I guess she was feeling overwhelmed. She couldn’t stop her tears from falling. I encouraged her to sleep, but she didn’t want to in the first hour. She needed to lay flat on her back for 6 hours. We also needed to wait for the anesthesia to wear off. She was hungry, but she eventually slept. She kept repeating that she was hungry when she would wake up. I would fall in and out of sleep too. At times I’d read. I’d pray for the others who were there in the recovery room. 6 hours is a looooong time to wait on a monobloc chair. But I thank God that because Danae’s a child, she was allowed company.

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My facebook post 🙂

 

Back in her room, she said she was happy that the surgery is over. Whew, me too!!!! We thanked God for everything. None of it would have been possible without Him. I was happy that the operation was a success, that her vitals were stable the entire time, that there are no complications, and that SHE’S ALIVE. Today, she is recovering very well. Praise God. 🙂

Through the 3 short days, my daughter learned to be more grateful. She thanked me each time I helped her ❤ ❤ ❤ . I don’t think I’ve ever received so many sincere thank yous that are not because of something material. On the way home, during a moment of quiet inside the car, she said “Thank You Lord.” That was probably the most sincere and meaningful prayer of thanks I ever heard her say. Indeed, our whole family thanks You, Lord. ❤

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First steps at home, with Wowa’s walker. 🙂

 

Thank you so much, family and friends, for standing with us in prayer. Thank you for checking on us as well. God bless each of you.

Click here and here for Danae’s take on her experience. 🙂

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
    Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
    I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever. PSalm 136:1

But I will restore you to health

and heal your wounds,’

declares the Lord, Jeremiah 30:17a

Just My Thoughts

God Didn’t Know

There was a bombing in Cagayan de Oro last July, and my girls heard us talking about it. We usually entertain their questions about what’s happening in the world. I can’t remember anymore what other thing we were talking about, but Danae was saying that God protected so and so, that’s why he or she is still alive. Noelle then said that GOD DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT THE BOMB IN CAGAN DE ORO (this is how she pronounces it), THAT’S WHY SOME PEOPLE DIED.

In Noelle’s mind, if God knew about it, He would have done something to protect those people for sure. But since they died, God must not have known about it.

Of course I reminded her of the truth that God knows everything. I told her that He did know about the bomb even before it happened. Naturally, the next question from Danae was, WHY DIDN’T GOD DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT?

I told my girls that there are times that God allows things to happen for a reason. Many times, we don’t understand why, but we have to continue to trust in Him because He is always good, He has a plan and He knows better. They accepted it, and it hasn’t come up again….YET.

Don’t these thoughts appear in our minds as well, when bad things happen? If God is so good and He knows everything that will happen, why does He let the bad things “slide”? If God is so powerful, why doesn’t He use His power to rid the world of evil and let good prevail?

Well if I knew all the answers, I would BE GOD. But I’m not. Neither are you. So let’s just trust the One who IS. He knows the big picture. He knows the whole story and every detail of it. He knows every single person that He created, He knows their hearts and minds, He knows their destiny. He knows how it’s going to play out and He knows how it’s going to end. He is everywhere at all times. He is almighty and He can do anything. He is sovereign and He can do what He wants with the world and His people. He is also infinitely wise and strategic. He is just, merciful and gracious. He is unchanging.

But most importantly, He loves us.

Why don’t we ever question it when good things happen to us? Why is it so easy for us to receive them, to assume that it is the way it is supposed to be? Why do we think we deserve goodness? Why don’t we ever wonder why we are still breathing, strong and healthy today? Why don’t we ever wonder why we have such amazing kids, or a fruitful career, or faithful friends, or a loving family, or incredible opportunities?

Funny how we attribute bad events to God’s work or His “passivity,” and attribute good things in our lives to chance, luck, or our own ability.

The truth is we deserve nothing. We are sinners and we deserve nothing but death. And yet, God deemed us worthy of His Son’s life — a full life for us here on earth and eternal life afterwards, in exchange for Jesus’ death on the cross. Despite OUR sin that separated us from our Creator, He wants us back. He loves us that much. We are getting the complete opposite of what we deserve. As if giving us “The Ticket” (Jesus) to get to heaven when we die is not enough, He gives us His presence, favor, grace, blessings now as we live our earthly lives. He is not a passive God. He is present, actively loving us every second of each day.

God has given us every reason to trust Him, to trust in His love. He is faithful. He is worthy.

He has given us every reason to be grateful.  So let’s be grateful. In all circumstances. Whether we understand them or not.

 

Lord, you have examined me
    and know all about me.
You know when I sit down and when I get up.
    You know my thoughts before I think them.
You know where I go and where I lie down.
    You know everything I do.
Lord, even before I say a word,
    you already know it.
You are all around me—in front and in back—
    and have put your hand on me.
Your knowledge is amazing to me;
    it is more than I can understand. Psalm 139:1-6 NCV

Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power
    and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
    for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, Lord, is the kingdom;
    you are exalted as head over all.
Wealth and honor come from you;
    you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
    to exalt and give strength to all. 1 Chronicles 29:11-12

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die.  But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:6-8

The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy. Psalm 111:7

 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

 

 

My Kids, THE BRAINY BUNCH

Happy 4th Birthday Noelle!

Noelle's candle blowing in Pasig. January 4, 2012.
Noelle’s candle blowing in Pasig. January 4, 2012.

Noelle turned 4 today. We had a candle blowing thing with her cousins on King’s side last Friday. My (King’s)

Big Guy's Pizza (12 flavors)!
Big Guy’s Pizza (12 flavors)!

sister-in-law came with her yummy Moosh lemon cupcakes, and we ordered a huge pizza from Big Guy. The girls slept the night there.

We rescheduled her candle blowing in church to next Saturday, and just went to Fun Ranch with their cousin on my side tonight. On our way there, King asked the girls a question.

King: Who’s happy?
Both girls: Me!
King: Why are you happy?
Danae: Because I have my toy and we’re going to Fun Ranch!

Noelle and Gabby in Fun Ranch! Jan 6, 2012. :)
Our two January celebrants in Fun Ranch! Jan 6, 2012. 🙂

King: How about you Noelle…why are you happy?

Danae, Noelle, and Gabby!
Danae, Noelle, and Gabby!

Noelle: Because it’s my birthday!

How incredibly refreshing to hear her say she was happy just because it was her birthday! Not because of a cake, a party, a trip, a friend, a gift, or anything new. The mere fact that she turns or turned four today is enough to make her giddy all week.

GRATEFULNESS. CONTENTMENT. JOY. Values we can all learn from my now four-year-old Noelle.

Happy 4th birthday Noelle! We love you! 🙂

My Kids, Parenting, THE BRAINY BUNCH

Raising Grateful Kids

In our home, we eat left-overs. One early afternoon, many months ago when we had no helper, I heard Danae complain about the food saying “AGAIN?!” I would remind her to be thankful that we have food to eat because many don’t. I tend to be real or maybe even over dramatic about these things, so I remind her about kids we see in the streets that have to beg or work, so they could have money to buy food. This happened a few times. She would eat the food but not before complaining. I really hate that kind of attitude and so I made a new rule. I sternly told her that if I hear her complain about the food, she is not going to eat any of it. She would have to wait for the next meal.

It worked! I do not hear her complaints or ungrateful comments anymore. She would ask me if it’s the same food again, but in a very different tone. If I do see a complaint coming, I’m quick to remind her and she changes her attitude.

My kids are pretty good eaters, even of vegetables thank God, and I don’t force them to eat anything that they normally don’t. I don’t serve them bad food. I don’t always serve them left-overs either. It’s not about that. It’s about the ATTITUDE. I want my kids to be grateful for what they have, whether it’s fried chicken from KFC or home-made vegetable soup, or steak and ribs from Racks or home-made vegetable spring rolls. I want them to always appreciate what they are given and be thankful most especially for the people who give it to them.

Family

SMALL FAVORS & TINY MIRACLES

That Monday, August 15, began as usual, although King had been complaining of lower back pain for a few days. Danae and I were even discussing where we wanted to go since it was (and is for every week) King’s only day off. After breakfast, he bent down to plug in the electric fan in the kitchen and could no longer straighten up completely. I was in the room then and just noticed him inching his way, holding his back and stomach in pain. I didn’t realize it was THAT painful until he laid down on the couch and said he couldn’t move anymore. It was too painful. I asked him straight away if he wanted to be brought to the ER (although my mind was racing, not knowing how on earth I was going to do that). He declined. We didn’t know what it was either, so decided to observe first. I didn’t text anybody, but because I saw my mother-in-law and my friend Michelle online, I decided to ask for their prayers. Immediately both suggested to go to the doctor and both offered to help out. I wasn’t panicked yet at that point because King didn’t want to go to the doctor yet, insisting it was just a really bad muscle pain, but at least I had people available to take the kids in case we needed to go. 1 Advil and 1 Ponstan later, he was able to walk with crutches to the car. Yeng and Michelle Remulla came to get the kids, and the in-laws were on their way to meet us at the hospital. With our situation — no helper, no yaya — that was some favor!

We drove up to the ER around 6pm. I asked if there was a valet because I didn’t want to leave King and drive all the way to the underground parking lot (the nearby one is under construction). The guard told me the valet service was closed for the day already, but after a few minutes, he told me that a valet staff was on his way to help me out. He parked the car for me, got my ticket, and came back to give the key and ticket back to me. I was so thankful!

The ER doctor found no abnormalities in King’s x-ray and so deemed that we were okay to be discharged even though the pain was still there. He assumed that it was just a severe muscle strain. But somehow we ended up with the decision to be admitted, and when we were turned over to our assigned Orthopedic doctor, that doctor immediately ordered for an MRI. If not for that MRI, we wouldn’t know what we’re dealing with. So even though that doctor was that guy (check previous blog), he did one good thing.

The insurance liaison came and told us that the room we wanted, the cheapest private room, was not available because they were fully booked. We had to occupy the more expensive one, BUT at the price of the cheapest one. Like a hotel upgrade! Our room was huge. Beds were uncomfortable (for me, that is) but the space was good for the kids.

And like I said in my previous blog, there was no shortage of kindness or generosity from our families and friends. My mom took Danae to and from school. She and my brother would bring clothes & food for us. I got a few hours off from the girls one night, care of Michelle. My in-laws (King’s parents, sister, nieces, brother, etc) took care of the girls for 3 nights — a first for us, but we were confident that they were in good hands. Our visitors not only asked us what we needed, they brought what we needed and more — food, groceries, supplies, prayers and encouraging words.

King with Paolo the PT

We certainly did not run out of things to be grateful for. I am most grateful for the God that we love and serve, the God who is all-knowing and all-powerful, yet is loving, kind, and good. We were told that if there was no progress in therapy, surgery would be the only option. But He is, for now, HEALING KING THROUGH THERAPY and there seems to be NO IMMEDIATE NEED for him to undergo surgery — for his deteriorated and protruding (slipped) disc to be removed, and then replaced with a titanium cage. Serious as it is, because the disc is impinging a nerve and anything can cause another episode, we have been seeing God move in how King is progressing. On the first day of his therapy, which was twice a day, he could barely even raise up his leg while lying down. There was no way he could push himself to move more without any pain. But on the third day, he sat up! (3rd days are really powerful!) By the fourth day, he stood up….and walked!!! By the sixth day, they already had him on a bike! The hospital’s physical therapists are awesome, by the way. They are friendly, kind, and always encouraging.

First Rehab as Out-Patient

It’s been 12 days since King’s diagnosis and the start of his therapy –17 therapy sessions in total so far, 5 more to go before the Rehab doctor checks him again. Though he isn’t back to normal and cannot go back to work yet, he’s doing great! And though the doctors have said that sadly, he cannot go back to sports anymore or even carry his kids, we are believing for complete healing, whether through therapy only or surgery.

King doing the big march.

We are grateful for the small favors and tiny miracles that we’re being given. I say small and tiny not to diminish God’s strength and power, but to acknowledge that He works in many different ways. We believe He is absolutely able and He knows what is best. So we do our part as we pray, believe, and wait. 🙂

He is the one you praise; he is your God, who performed for you those greatand awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes. Deut 10:21

“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me? Jer 32:27

Family, Just My Thoughts, Spiritual Family

HOMEBOUND!

Here’s my take-home as we go home after ten days in the hospital….

COURAGE is not the absence of fear, but STRENGTH IN THE MIDST OF FEAR. I saw this in my husband despite his pain, his fear of feeling the pain, and his fear of what his condition will mean in the future. Although I saw him go through some emotions, I never saw him give in to his fear. I did not see him cower in despair and unbelief. He definitely felt fear and worry at times, but his faith was intact. He was and is secure of God’s love, goodness, power & sovereignty that a few disheartening words did not destroy him. I have courage because he has courage.

ENCOURAGEMENT is something you can’t do without when you’re in the hospital or facing any adverse situation. I did my best encouraging King, but he also drew courage from others. My friends would always ask me not just how King is, but how I am. The family needs just as much encouragement as the patient. Danae broke down at one point and I had to be the one to encourage her that daddy’s going to be okay. THE TONGUE IS INDEED POWERFUL, able to build up or tear down. We are grateful for family and friends who helped build us up by their hopeful messages and timely visits. We appreciate the conversations too, and all the laughter. Nothing like laughter to lift up one’s spirits!

We are also grateful for the few who spoke hopeless words to us because it just showed us that that is not what we want to be, when it’s our turn to be “there” for another. We choose to be encouraging and uplifting, knowing that one discouraging word can bring such gloom to a bright, sunny day (exactly how I felt).

PRAYER is a strong weapon. When that person said those discouraging words to us, it wasn’t anything new. We heard it already, but he just said it in a way that it seemed hopeless. I literally found myself at a loss for words when King and I were alone that night, an hour or two after. I looked at King and I knew that we both felt the same way –DISCOURAGED. We didn’t know how else to deal with it but to PRAY. We fought the discouragement and found courage once again when we prayed. The prayers of our family and friends give us much courage too, to press on and not give up.

SUPPORT from our families and friends was unbelievable. From helping us with the kids and bringing us clothes, to bringing us food and other needs, messaging or calling us, visiting us, praying for us, running errands for us. There was no shortage of KINDNESS  among our families and friends. It makes us all the more appreciative of who we have in our lives.

GRACE is what gets us through each day. THE INCREDIBLE GRACE OF GOD. God gives us the extraordinary ability to be grateful for little things. God gives King the extraordinary ability to push through his fears. God gave me the extraordinary ability & strength to take care of one who, in the first 6 days, could not do anything without my help and of two little ones at the same time. God gives us the extraordinary peace in our hearts, assuring us that everything is going to be okay. God gives me the EXTRAORDINARY LOVE to do everything I never thought I could do for my husband. I now know somehow what my mom went through, taking care of my dad as he received chemotherapy in the hospital. I now somehow know what IN SICKNESS AND IN HEALTH truly means.

We don’t know yet exactly why God allowed this to happen, but we do know that in times like these, how we respond is always a choice. By God’s grace, we are able to CHOOSE TO BE GRATEFUL. 🙂

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Cor 12:9

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:6-7

Just My Thoughts, Marriage

EXPECTATIONS

One of the hardest things for me to do is TO NOT EXPECT. As a wife, I have expectations from my husband. As a mom, I have expectations from my kids. As a friend, as a daughter, as a church member, as a boss, as a customer, as a leader — I have expectations. It’s so hard not to have them!

Some expectations are healthy, true, and they should come with expectations from ourselves as well. So if I expect my husband to honor his commitment to God & me, I should also keep my end of the deal and make sure we protect our marriage. If I expect my kids to obey, be kind, share and all that, I must not stop teaching them to do so, nor stop disciplining them when they do not. If I expect my friends to love me and listen to me even when I’m in a bad mood, I must also be willing to clam up and listen when they want to comfort me, encourage me, pray for me, or rebuke me. And so on and so forth.

I love what Andy Stanley said about desires vs expectations in a marriage. Forgive me if I didn’t get it exactly right but my take on it is that desire comes from a place of hope. Expectations come from a place of requirement or demand. Andy Stanley said, and I will never forget this because it is so true, that we will know when our pure desires have become expectations based on the degree of our thankfulness. How often do I thank King for changing Noelle’s diaper? For reading the girls their Bible story? For taking Danae to class? For gassing up the car? These are things that are expected of a dad and husband, you say? Maybe. And they are what I hope King would never tire of doing for me and the kids. But they should not be taken for granted. They should not be just assumed or demanded from my husband and they should always be appreciated. Like what King always says….HIGH APPRECIATION, LOW EXPECTATION. I know I’d want the same for myself.

It’s funny how I was able to take care of my kids without King’s help when he was away for 2 weeks. I was tired, but I wasn’t cranky. Now that he’s home, I get annoyed when I don’t get the help that I need from him! When he was out, I didn’t have any expectations because he was not here. I knew that I would have to do everything myself and I was completely fine with that. If only I could be like that even when King is here! Even though I’m capable of doing the work, I can’t help but expect him to help me because he IS here!

In a marriage and in many relationships, we’re sometimes not aware that the good things we receive, we turn into expectations, instead of them being surprises and a source of joy. We start getting used to receiving them, we start expecting to receive them, we start feeling entitled to receive them, then we start feeling disappointed when we don’t receive them. It all results in UNGRATEFULNESS.

I am talking to myself and praying for God to help me as I share this, as usual. I want to train myself to not expect King to help me, unless I actually articulate it to him. Our husbands are not mind-readers, and sometimes common sense to us women is not common sense to men at all. When I do not expect, I do not get frustrated, I do not get disappointed. WHEN I DO NOT EXPECT AND I GET WHAT I HOPE FOR, THEN IT’S SO MUCH EASIER TO BE GRATEFUL!

click here for Thammie Sy’s blog about desires vs expectations 🙂

Just My Thoughts, Parenting

be happy!!!

Months ago, Danae and Noelle were playing with umbrellas at home. They used it as their “houses.” Noelle was younger then and she just took one of the umbrellas. Danae, of course, protested, saying that she needed it. Noelle was having fun with one, while Danae kept whining that she only had 3 left.

What a clear picture of how we sometimes are. Instead of being happy with, being grateful for, and enjoying what we have, we complain about the one that we don’t.

Sometimes frustrated, I often ask her for this favor: “Can you please just be happy?” It’s a choice. Just be happy.

When we leave the kids at home, they often request us to buy donuts. One night, King came home from work and Danae asked if her dad brought her some, which of course King didn’t. They didn’t ask for any when King left and King certainly didn’t promise to bring home some. She was disappointed and kept on sulking.

Here’s another clear picture of how we are sometimes. We expect to receive things that either we did not ask for or we were not promised. Of course we end up disappointed! We set ourselves up!

Think about it. Did you ask God for it? Did you pray about it? Whether it’s a job, a relationship, an opportunity, a trip, a gadget or car or house?  Is this God’s promise to you? This kind of or particular job? This man? This country?

The more we build our relationship with God through prayer, by reading His word and through church, the more we know God’s promises and God’s will for each of us. God is a promise-maker and a promise-keeper, but don’t expect Him to give you something that He doesn’t offer in the first place.