Wednesday, January 13, 2021

OUR CHRISTMAS (2020)


It's CHRISTMAS! And even though I've heard several times from people how "they don't feel the warmth of the holidays," I beg to differ. 
Of course, I know where the sadness is coming from. This pandemic truly caught us all by surprise and I'm sure everyone (myself included) has experienced pain and loss. Still, even if our holidays were not as festive and "en grande" as before, we should still remember and focus on the deeper meaning of CHRISTMAS. The season after all celebrates the birthday of Jesus and I believe that is already reason enough to at least appreciate what we already have and (still) thank God for everything.

So yes, even if CHRISTMAS is different this year, let us all just focus on what's important -- family, blessings, love, and Jesus.

With those in mind, I'm sure the heart will find the happiness we all need right now.

Sharing with you what happened to us during the holidays...



MERRY CHRISTMAS! 


Christmas season officially starts for me the first time I have my Toffee Nut Latte from Starbucks. This special drink is only offered during the holidays and one sip gets me all warm and "Christmas-y" inside.




Sometime that month, we met up with Team Virrey and had lunch in our favorite, TGIFRIDAYS.  It was our first time to see a full Christmas set up that we just have to have a photo op there!



At the end of November, we finally put up our Christmas tree!

Our tree is quite old but we still love it.




After putting up the foundation, the boys started to assemble. 




DONE!!!

Isn't it beautiful???




No matter how old, I always love Christmas trees. It just gives an automatic feeling of warmth in the household and love.



One weekend, we met up with Team Navarro and Team Campo for our Christmas dinner and getogether in PANTRY at Dusit Thani!

So fun! Bitin as usual! Glad we were able to meet up amidst everyone's busy schedule.

SEE BLOG POST HERE!!!




This year, our office had a different kind of Christmas party via zoom!!!! Some of the staff were in the studio, some were in the office (like us), while some were in their homes. 

Super different from what we're used to but it's necessary. Thankful that we still have a company that made the effort for this!!!



See the blog post HERE!




We were supposed to meet up with Team Virrey the week before for Andrei's post birthday celebration. Something came up and we had to reschedule. 



Our Korean night also because our Christmas getogether too!



We had an exchange of gifts!

Weeee! Thanks Aning for the beautiful soup bowls and tissue holders!!!!!!!!!




The boys also!



And the kiddies!!!! Wohoo!




The next day.... December 23...

Andrei's breakfast were the Korean Ban Chan goodies we took home from last night.



Same goes for Mati!




I know that it was going to be a busy day so I started setting up the table and getting everything ready.




Done!!! Mati and Andrei helped!!!!!



Andrei put names on each place setting. 



Like it? He he he he he! Labor of love yan!!!!!!




All set and ready for tonight!!!!!!



HOWEVER..... 

My Mom's sister died the night before and since my Mom and Kuya will be making payment and funeral arrangements, it was decided that Noche Buena will be moved tomorrow. We called my Kuya from Antipolo and they agreed that they will just stay in their mountain and drop by the next day. 




So it's just going to US for tonight!!!!!



For our simbang gabi, Mati suggested we tune in to Don Bosco's mass celebration that night. 




We all dressed up and attended Christmas mass.

Kuya Jon joined us for awhile as he waited for the driver. He'll be meeting up with Mommy in the funeral home. 



Baby Jesus is here!!




All concentrated for the mass.




DONE!!!!!!



Singing a Christmas song while the priest exits from the altar.




Our Noche Buena for tonight...

JOLLIBEE!!!!! Ha ha ha ha ha ha!



My Mom said to cook or anything I wanted for the boys. Still, we set put with JOLLIBEE!

We thought that since we're going to have our family lunch tomorrow, we'll just have something simple (yet delicious) tonight!!!!!



LET'S EAT!!!




The big guys!!!!




My bunso!




Toast!!!!




My plateeeee!! SHEREEEEP!



Galit galit muna. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!




In between chomps of the delicious food, we would joke around and laugh.



We all agreed that our JOLLIBEE Noche Buena may not be as festive as our usual Christmas dinners, but it was still so delicious, fun, and memorable!!!

I don't think we'll forget this Noche Buena in a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG time!!! Kakaiba ang saya niya!

We still had an awesome night!!!!!

That just proves that you don't need super expensive dinners or getaways, HOME with your family is the best place to be!!!!




Everyone got in such a great mood that even Andrei volunteered to wash the dishes! Awwwww!!!!!!



When Andrei finished, we all went outside to enjoy the Christmas air.



My camera didn't do justice to the beauty of the moon that night. Here's me trying. He he he he he!




We went back inside and reminisced at how usually the family would all be crazy unwrapping gifts and doing our mini-program. 

Oh well... Wala sila? Picturan na lang tayo! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!




Family pic!




Just the boys pic!

They really don't like having their pictures taken! Ha ha ha ha ha!




Christmas tree pic!




The boys pic!




Parents pic!!!

Galing talaga ni Aldo!! Tee Hee! Guess why it's there? He he he he eh!




After our photo session, Mati and I dressed back into house clothes and continued with our Star Wars marathon!




While the Yub and Andrei played with their RCs!

I find it cute how each parent share a hobby with a each son. He he he he he he!




After playing RC, the Yub joined us for the movie.

Kuya Jon and Mommy arrived as well! This was already around 12:00am. Still, they had some of our Jollibee! He he he he he!




I was also chatting with Ate Jit (who's with her hubs family at the time) and she asked about Andrei.

Ayun nag Youtube na!




At 12:30am, I thought of treating my guys to some hot chocolate!

Got some Batirol and I boiled it up with milk.

SARAPPPP!!!!!




All ready!!!

Sayang we don't have Marshmallows! He he he he he he!




This was SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO yum!!!! No Swiss Miss for us. Give us BATIROL!!!!




Our hot and luscious drinks went so well with our chocolate chip cookies!




What a way to end our different, but awesome, Christmas eve!!!!!




We all slept at about 3:00am!! The next day, we were all soooo lazy to get up. Ha ha ha ha ha ha! This is Andrei getting up from his bed and still sleepy on ours!




As much as I wanted to stay in bed though, I have to get up and cook!

I think I'll be doing everything myself because Mommy is busy!




I'll be doing everything besides the steak (the highlight of our lunch). 

Started off with the Truffle Pasta and the Gravy!



Kuya Jay and family dropped by before going to Karen's side.




The cousins had a short chat and exchanged gifts!




It was a fun but bitin visit! It's ok. The boys will be having a vacation there after Christmas. 




Now back to cooking!!!!!!




AND FINALLY!!!!!!!



Le food is READYYYYY!!!!

Here's the grub!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Sushi Platter from GYOSHIN JAPANESE FOOD!




We love their Sushi! Affordable and VERRRRY good!



Baked Mashed Potatoes!

I don't know why but the cheese always burns!!!! Grrrrrrrr!!!!!!! 

I made more than I should. Ha ha ha ha ha ha! My pamangkin Rocio kasi loves this kaya I made extra para she could take it home. I boiled the potatoes ahead of time yesterday before the "change of plans." He he he he he!




Truffle Pasta!!!



A favorite of the boys!!! So easy to cook pa especially with oils from UMBRIA TERRA DI TARTUFI!!!



Baked Prawns!!!!!!




We thought of having a little surf and turf going on. He he he he he! This was a great addition.




And the only dish I didn't cook or prepare but THE highlight of the lunch -- STEAKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




My Kuya makes mean steaks!!!! You would think that you're eating at the popular steakhouses out there.

Soooo tender, and juicy, and flavorful! He adds pa mushrooms on the side.

SOBRANG SARAAAAAP!





For dessert, we're having this light and fruity sponge cake sent by mareng Gail! Infer I know where she got this and I must say, saraaaaaap!!!! It deserves its spot in the spread. 




Ayan na! Our NOCHE BUENA! Or LUNCH BUENA! He he he he he!




Aba... Somebody's excited to drink champagne and his non-alcoholic wine!




Time to eatyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Kuya Jon and Mommy!!!!!




Yub and Mati!



Me and the bunso!!!!!




Nom... nom... nom...




The bunsoy carefully getting his desired sushi from the platter. Ha ha ha ha ha ha!




My plate!!!! My beautiful plateeeee!!!!!!



Yes. We eat our steak with Wasabi. AY YOU SHOULD TRY IT!!! We got that idea from Japan!




Andrei and his wine!




Afterwards, we all cleaned up!




I'm so thankful for my boys who didn't complain at all. They were happy to help out!

Then, it's time to get our gifts from the tree!




Kuya Jon's gift for Yub and Andrei!!!!




As for me, I got 2 hard drives!!! It's what I put on my wishlist!!!!




Yub's gift for Mati!




I told the kiddies to check the Christmas tree baka somebody left other gifts.




They found it!




AMPAO from SANTA!!!!!




"Andrei from Santa -- Sorry there's Covid..."

He he he he! Wawa Santa... He wasn't able to go out much because of the pandemic kaya cash na lang. He he he he he he he!




My gift for the boys... CLOTHES!!!!!




I gave the Yub something in an envelope (he requested it!!).



Same goes to my Mom!

She didn't ask for it but I had bonus so yeheeesssss...




Mati got a gundam from his Ninang Marian!

We only opened gifts from those present. Next time na lang from the other family members who cannot join us today. Maybe on New Year's eve. He he he he he!




The next day, it was just us 3 at home - my Mommy and Kuya went to the wake, while the Yub went to the province.

It's back to "normal" for us.

Ang oily ko ah... ha ha ha ah ha!



You know that what's normal to you is crazy for others when your son makes THIS on his plate.

Yep! And I wouldn't have it any other way. He he he he he he!

===================

Before ending this piece, let me share our different shots with a Christmas tree!!!




In Bonifacio High Street...




In UPTOWN MALL...




In Edsa Shangrila Mall...




In New World Hotel...




In DUSIT HOTEL MAKATI...




And at home!!!!!




I don't think we'll ever outgrow our enchantment and love for the beauty of CHRISTMAS. Even if times change where we might experience hardships (like what's happening now), once I see a fully lit Christmas tree (may it be as grand as Edsa Shangrilas or as old as what we have at home), it already reminds me of all the happy times with the family.

We don't really need to be anywhere else. We just need to be with the people we love and of course, to remember the real reason for CHRISTMAS.... 

And like what I said above, if we focus on FAMILY, BLESSINGS, LOVE, AND JESUS, we will find that inner happiness that no grandeur of Noche Buena or trips could ever give.

Kahit nga looking at sa lumang Christmas tree to remind us of that is tamang tama na. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

(Belated) Merry Christmas y'alls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SO

THERE!








+++++++++++++++++++ 

ILYD




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