Cassandra Seven Months

#latepost

It’s seven months for Cassandra!

Last May 15, we had a simple lunch out to bring our baby Cassandra for a treat.  Some changes we noticed on her:

  1. She’s now used to BLW.  When she eats, she really munches on the veggies.  Probably a great reason why she’s that big.
  2. She’s beginning to do the close-open trick. I’m not sure if it’s universal, but as Pinoys, doing the close-open is a right of passage for all babies.
  3. She can now sit independently.  Though there’s some wobblyness, she seem to be pretty independent.
  4. And just today, we found out that she’s beginning to have teeth.

Amanda Turns 4

This is Amanda when she was about six months old.  Last April 17 we celebrated Ate Amanda’s fourth birthday.  Time flies (I think I’ll always say this for every birthday blog that I’ll write for my kids)

Picture

#LatePost

To celebrate her birthday we planned on surprising her as soon as she wakes up in the morning.  So while she was sleeping last night (she was fully asleep as early as 6pm since she got too tired on her first taekwondo class), Cali fixed the balloons in the room, while I got the special cake we ordered from her Tita Sharon.

Four things that make me feel she’s growing 
too fast:

  1. Her English vocabulary is getting bigger. – Well it’s not only English but she’s able to talk straight in Filipino now.  Thanks to her cousin playmate Edan, as she was forced to talk in Filipino everytime they play at Mama’s house.
  2. Imagination is at an all time high – It’s only now that I begin to appreciate that lego blocks really help in developing a child’s imagination.  Although there were instructions in the box, she often builds a different structure after making the default one dictated by the instructions.
  3. She chooses what to wear.  She has her own fashion already, and mommy cannot dictate her what to wear anymore 🙂
  4. She composes music on the fly.  When she’s playing pretend, as she acts, she makes her dialogues musical.  It’s like watching a broadway play when she’s playing.

Love More Weekend

Last May 16 weekend, we were fortunate to attend the CFC Echo Conference.  And this year’s theme is Love More.

Some insights I got were:

  1. Love God More.  In serving God, there’s no limit as to how one can truly give.  When you play for God, people only see the music being played at the conference but not the practices done before the event. That includes the years of experience in order to master the craft. There came a point that I wanted to get a replacement as the schedule didn’t allow me to get enough rest on the weekends. But still, when you know why you’re doing things, and for this matter it’s for God, you just go on.
  2. Love Family More. When Bro. Lex shared his experiences, one of the things that struck me most was when he said “I was looking for more things to provide for my family, but only to find out that having a family is already enough.”  Beyond the material things, ambitions, pride… the underlying treasure that we can hold dear is our family.
  3. Love Spouse More.  It was very touching when one of the sharers told her story about her alcoholic husband.  That she has to endure all those years to be able to support her family. It lead me to appreciate my wife more and go that extra mile in showing my love for her everyday. Happy wife, happy life.  To keep happiness inside the house, I should be mindful of the things that would make our house the happy place.  When Amanda and Cassandra grows up, I hope that they experience enough happiness in the house such that when things are not going their way in their careers, studies, love life, they can find refuge and happiness inside the house.
  4. Love Kids More.  It’s extra difficult to bring kids to community activities.  But as a young couple, it’s good to always bring them in conferences despite the hassle of preparations.  If we chose to leave them, they wouldn’t have meet their new playmates and ates and kuyas where they discover new games and social skills.

BLW

BLW stands for baby led weaning. Thanks to Ninang Check for helping Rookie Mom do this for Cassandra as she starts her journey in taking solid food.  At first we were afraid as she might choke with the big portions of vegetables she needs to eat but by nature, she’s able to handle it.  Some benefits that my wife told me about BLW are:

  1. Healthy eating habits.  As she’s been introduced to different food flavors, she’s able to adapt to the fruits and vegetable tastes.  Like the other day she was eating ampalaya which is bitter, but still she’s able to take it.
  2. Prevent obesity.  Well with Cassandra’s curls all over, it might be easy to conclude that she might get obese when she grows up, but studies show that those who do BLW are fit and healthy when they grow up.  Probably because they’re used to eating high fiber vegetables and fruits.
  3. So cute.  It’s amazing how Cassandra’s little chubby hands grasp those broccoli and squash pieces.




I highly recommend this approach when introducing solid food to babies. It’s healthy and fun. 

Insights on Maypac

Two lessons I learned from the MayPac fight:

Lesson One: Knowing what’s important.  Yes, the fight was boring, but Mayweather just simply played by what boxing rules can allow so he end up winning by a not so convincing unanimous fight.

In corporate terms, I can relate it to KPIs.

Key Performance Indicators…

Knowing what our stakeholders give importance to is the key to adding value to our existence.

In parenting, as a rookie dad, I kept on struggling how to balance my time and energy in order to be a better dad.  But then I took a step back if all the efforts I’m doing is something that my kids appreciate.

First, about working hard for the family… In the movies (specially in telenovelas) we kept on hearing dads saying “I have to do this and that… etc.  FOR MY FAMILY”  Well, we could also hear this from parents who chose to work abroad for the future of their own family…

I’m not against it… but I must admit, that there should be mindfulness in the decision of being not around for the family in exchange of careers for monetary reasons.  What is it that our kids or wife want?  Is it the material things that money can buy?  Or is it our time?  Or even if we have time, do we have enough energy to talk to our spouse and be silly to play with our kids?  IMHO, it’s the conscious effort on making our family laugh at our corny jokes, creativity in turning our ordinary blankets into a wonderful gowns for our baby princesses or simply just exchanging silly stories maybe what’s more essential to our family.

I certainly agree that we need adequate money to make our family happy… In the TRC, I learned that there’s a certain point that families can be happy with this amount of money… I browsed over an article that there was a study in the US where families need $75,000 to make a decent living.  Beyond that, happiness is more than what money cannot buy.

Lesson Two: Heart.  Mayweather may have worked smart by just throwing punches that the judges can see so he can have the score but Pacquiao being the aggressor, has the real passion for the sport.  Can you imagine if he opted to play defensively as well?  It’s going to be a dance off than a combat.


In the end, even if Mayweather won, more people admired Pacquiao’s fighting style and dedication to boxing.

In parenting, it’s all about heart.  It’s all about love.  It’s all about passion.

As a dad, when I think it’s too tiring to work or too sleepy to play with Amanda and Cassandra at night… or giving up rest days in the weekend for the whole family to enjoy, I have to refocus what all these things are all about.  It’s all about loving my family.