A couple of days ago, I took the kids to Mcdo playground and since I didn't bring any book for me to read, I read the newspaper and tried Su|do|ku for the very first time and now I'm hooked...

I have always been intrique by this, but have never sat down and do the puzzle. Despite its simplicity, it took me 1 hour to do the puzzle in the newspaper, and yet I still didn't get it.

Yesterday, I went to the dollar store and bought myself 2 books on Sudoku. Today, I bought Dora The Explorer and Spongebob Squarepant's version of Sudoku for my kids to try.

Su|do|ku... an abbreviated form of a Japanese expression meaning "single number."

The object is to fill in the blank squares in such a way that each of the numbers 1 to 9 appears exactly once in each row, column and block. If the puzzle has been constructed properly, there should be only one way to complete the diagram within the rules of the game.



Try it... I'll be posting the answers later in my comment box.


Something big is coming up...

Tons of decisions to make!

And lots of phone calls too!

It's exciting at the same time it's scary...

Where would our future take us? I wonder...

What's on the other side? Better I hope...

I may not have time to blog for awhile... we'll see...

Life has to go on... and we are moving on???

Hopefully... soon... kung matuloy!

Pros and Cons

Good things about being out of town --

  • I have my inlaws to keep the kids busy and occupied
  • My kids get to spend some time with their other cousins
  • Hubby and I get to relax and watch dvd/movies with no worries (my BIL got quite a huge selection of dvds at home)
  • I don't have to cook nor worry about my menu for the week (though I was asked to make palabok for my SIL's house blessings)
  • No dishes to wash since we used paper plates all the time
  • We get to eat and try different restaurants (courtesy of my inlaws)
  • Though we travelled from Mississauga to Washington DC to Cape May to Atlantic City to New York City and Fairfield, we had quite a huge "savings" since my MIL paid for almost everything, including our gas. Yippeeee!
  • And of course, spending quality time with the FAMILY - priceless!

The negative side of it all --
  • Kids never stop asking "are we there yet?"
  • Kids never stop complaining the travel time from cities to cities...
  • Kids never eat a proper meal during our trip
  • And tend to eat a lot of junk food (courtesy of my inlaws)
  • And tend to sleep really late due to our numerous activities

Travelling in big groups --
  • It was definitely hard to travel in big groups (our group consists of 3 kids under 10, 2 senior citizens, 1 handicapped, a pregnant SIL + 4 adults, total of 11)
  • Our breakfast is usually at 8-10am... lunch is 2-3pm... and dinner is 8-10pm...
  • We missed out a lot in Washington DC especially since its the first for most of us... mainly because the grandparents prefers to stay in the tour bus rather than walk.
  • But I did get the chance to see Atlantic City even though it wasn't part of our itinerary.
  • Everybody seems to have their own itinerary in mind like meeting someone for lunch/dinner... yet not everybody in the group would agree to it because its out of the way or there's not enough time... some people just wanted to sleep... and the kids were just happy to stay at home and play together... and yet everybody wants to stay together! ",)

Tag #7: Five things

I've been tagged by Fenny from HongKong.

5 Things in my PURSE

  • Wallet
  • Cellphone
  • Sunglasses/eyeglasses
  • House and car keys
  • Digicam

5 Things in my CLOSET
  • Clothes
  • Sewing kit
  • Kid's gameboy
  • Documents
  • Hubby's gadgets

5 Things in my FRIDGE
  • Dairy products like Milk, butter and cheese
  • Eggs
  • Spices/condiments
  • Ice cream
  • Ham and hotdogs

Tag, you're it!

Busy bee #3

One of my best friend arrived last Sunday night from Taiwan. She's staying with us temporarily until she can find a place of her own. Jetlag and resting at home wasn't part of her vocabulary... This has been our sched since she arrived:

Her plane arrived at 10pm but she came out around 11:20pm. We had midnight dinner and chatted till 2am.

We took the bus to Square One so she can open her bank account... went to the grocery to buy toiletries... inquired about cellphone plans...

I took her to enjoy Splash Island (water park) at Canada's Wonderland... We had a blast and all sunburned!

She finally bought her SIM card so she can start texting family and friends... She also babysat for me when I went on my interview... then later at night, we drove her around downtown Toronto to look at some apartment. My son has been giving us a hard time the whole day today.

She went to downtown Toronto to look for an apartment by herself. I have to pass this time since I don't think my kids will enjoy walking around looking for apartment.

Besides I have a lot of chores to do at home and I miss my computer and blogging. hehehe...

Google Maps

I've always relied on Yahoo and/or MSN maps for directions... We drove to NYC about once or twice a year and the average time of our travel is 11-14 hours that includes bathroom/food/gas stops and we would always missed one or two exits because of the numerous turns, tolls and passing through small towns.

Recently, I discovered Google Maps. We have to rely on hubby's blackberry phone to give us direction since we had problem with hubby's laptop and the GPS that comes with it. Google Maps gave us 9 hours of travelling time with 4 quick stops, a total of 537 miles! All major highways and only 3 tolls. Unbelievable!

Whirlwind Romance?

For me, a relationship whose foundation started on friendship is the best foundation of all. You get to know each other better even before you develop feelings for one another.

I have friends whose relationship is a whirlwind romance and much to my amazement, honestly, it worked out just fine for them. As far as I can see, they are happily married.

Couple #1:
One of my best friend in high school met her husband through "kai siao" (introduction by parents), 6 months later, they were married. You see, my friend's grandma died, and based on chinese tradition, its either they got married within the first 100 days or wait for 2 years. They opted option #1. Now they got 3 lovely kids and still very much married after 11 years!

Couple #2:
An ex-officemate of mine, who was on a rebound at that time, met her husband and was married within 8 months from the first time they met. Her ultimate goal was to get married and be a wife and mother. She never liked working. I was telling her to wait a little bit longer since she's still very young (22 at that time) and if I'm not mistaken there's a 9 years age gap. During the first 2 years of their married life, she still talks about her ex, which scared me because I felt that she hasn't fully recovered from that relationship. Now, 12 years later and 2 kids, they are still the same as the first time they met.

Couple #3:
The girl is a single mom... she joined one of those "seeking mate" online thing and met her husband, a foreigner there. He was divorce with 2 kids. It was a long distance relationship. They exchange emails and phone calls... and the first time they met in person, they have to get married so that she can get a visa to go to Europe with him. Everything happen in a span of 10 months. That was 5 years ago. They have 1 child together.

... oOo ...

Someone close to the family is currently experiencing this same situation. The guy is in his late 30s. The girl is a single mom of a 1-year old girl and in her mid 30s. They met through the internet, 2 months ago, and set-up their wedding date this coming October. Too fast too soon?

The guy thinks he's not at the losing end, in fact, he said he even got a "bonus" (meaning the child).

I think the girl is taking advantage of him. She is obviously on a rebound. Currently jobless and has a 1-year old baby.

Everybody on the guy's family wanted them to wait for a couple more months to get to know each other and get married sometime next year.

As for the girl's side, I don't really know how her parents could allow her to get married after a failed relationship that ended up with a baby. The guy have met the girl's family and friends... but the guy's family (so far) haven't met the girl and her family yet.

They are already both in their 30s, there's no need to rush into marriage just because they think they are getting older and their biological clock is ticking... what's a couple more months, right? and what's the big rush to get married?

What's you take on this one? Am I/the family being too naive and/or conservative? Or is this the "in" thing now-a-days?

I can just hope and pray that they know what they are doing and this isn't something they will regret later on.

Weekend getaway #5: USA

Family reunion in Washington, D.C. and NYC consists of hubby's parents, his only sister, her husband and son, Aunt E and her 3 children and 2 grandchildren from Virginia Beach and Uncle F (but we love calling him Lolo Boss) from Manila. Uncle L, who is based in Saudi, joined us in NYC.

  • Day 1: We drove almost 12 hours from Mississauga to Arlington, Virginia... and had a late dinner with family and relatives at Buca Di Beppo in Washington, D.C.

    A big family reunion!

  • Day 2: City tour with stops to take pictures at the White House and Washington Monument. It's hard to travel in a big group, my inlaws and Boss don't like walking that much... my SIL is pregnant... and the 3 kids were happy running around and playing. We missed out a lot on the sightseeing. Definitely have to go back again.

    We left Washington D.C. at 7pm and drove another 4+ hours to Cape May, New Jersey.

  • Day 3: We spent the day at Wildwoods' boardwalk and arcade and later at Cape May beach. Kids were playing baseball in the sand since the water is too cold.

    I decided to feed the seagulls in the hope that Boss will enjoy it... but it turned out that he was afraid of them. Poor Boss!

    From the beach, we were able to see 2 dolphins.

    Movie night @ home: Failure to Launch -- a very funny movie.

  • Day 4: We visited the Cape May State Park Lighthouse and had a delicious seafood lunch at Lobster House...

    Boss is really hungry and tired, this is about 2:30pm already.
    Yummy lobsters!!!

    Then we drove for another 2 hours to have an early dinner at Tita Tits' new home in New Jersey and then off we go to Atlantic City which is 20 minutes away.

    The kids played mini golf there while hubby and I went strolling down the boardwalk and FIL/MIL/Boss just sat down waiting for us.

    We left Atlantic City at 9:30pm and arrived at Bayside, New York at 1:30am.

  • Day 5: Fourth of July. Rest day for all of us... Patricia had a loose tooth so she didn't eat much...

    and later in the afternoon we went to the grounds of United Nation in New York City for the Fourth of July Fireworks!

    The Planets and a star

  • Day 6: Another rest day for my inlaws, so me, hubby and the kids spent the day at Fairfield, Connecticut to meet with a friend and her family whom I've never seen in 7 years! We got there at 10:15am, exchange stories and had pizza for lunch. It was just a quick meeting since she has to go to work at 2pm. I'm just so glad she was able to squeeze us in her hectic sched.

    Later that night, hubby got sick.

    Movie night @ home: Firewall -- quite disappointing considering its a Harrison Ford movie. The story is quite boring and dragging.

  • Day 7: Another rest day... and laundry day for me... we had family dinner at Ihawan, New York City. Hubby was left at home since he was too sick to eat or even stand up.

    Patricia's tooth finally falls off and she was happy to get a $1 from the Tooth Fairy (aka mommy). She was very happy when this happen. She said with a smile: "Ako ay bungi. I lost a tooth it means I'm growing up!"

    Movie night @ home: Superman Returns -- another disappointing movie. Christopher Reeve's Superman is still the best!

  • Day 8: Boss' dream came true! He's been wanting to see Battery Park and the Statue of Liberty since he came to the United States. We took a 50-minute cruise around the harbor.

  • Lolo Boss, Patricia and Andrii

    Now he is ready to go back home.

  • Day 9: My SIL's house blessing. They bought the condo and moved in last April. This is actually their second house warming party. I prepared palabok and glad to say that it was a success, almost everybody loves it.

    The party ended in karaoke. I was really surprised to see hubby singing and dancing.

    Boss and hubby singing "New York, New York"

  • Day 10: It's goodbye time for everyone... uncle L and aunt E left 10am for Virginia Beach... FIL and Boss going back to Manila and left for the airport at 11:30am... we also left at the same time.

    Cousin Andrii was crying when we left. He was really sad to see his cousins go.

    MIL's flight back to Beijing is at 4:30am the following day.

    Surprisingly, our trip this time only took us 9 hours with 4 quick stops! Its a record breaking road trip for us. Normally our drive to NYC is about 11-14 hours long! We got home just in time for the sunset.

Conversation #14: Message for a baby

In New York city....

Cousin Andrii's parents were on their way for the monthly checkup.
A few months back, they lost baby Trissi Gabrielle. Now, my SIL is on her 3rd month of pregnancy (again)... On their way out --

ANDRII: Bye Mommy... bye dada... bye baby [touching mommy's tummy]...

PATRICK: Bye baby and please don't go straight to heaven this time. Please come out.

I wasn't there personally to hear this, but MIL was there.