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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What I'm Missing on Weekdays

I've been stuck at home for two days now. Doctor's orders.

And these past two days are one of the most memorable days I've spent at home. For one, it was just me, Maia and Yaya. I felt like I was king and queen for two days. With no Tibs butting in to contradict my orders. Kidding.

What really made these two days memorable were these chance:

- to watch Maia go straight to the potty trainer after waking from a nap and successful empty her bladder with out our prodding. Added bonus was her cheering "YEY! GALING!" after rising from the potty seat.
- to learn that Maia loves to eat cheese. We used to think she only likes those ensaymada toppings that she likes to pick but I thought of handing her a few cheese slices and she devoured them instantly. There's even a matching, "yummmm sarap sarap!" when she finished the cheese off her plate. I don't know yet if the liking would take her as far as one week. But at least we have alternative calcium source for the next few days since we're really trying to wean her off the bottle.
- to listen to Maia respond to her dad's call. Usually, when I'm on the other line she'd just keep quiet and listen to me talk. But these past 2 days, she'd immediately say 'dad?dad?' when I hand over the phone to her. Now this somehow convinces me that this little girl is a Daddy's girl. *sob*sob
- be around when Maia's on her extra sensitive/attentive mood. Or maybe it's because yaya kept telling her Mom's sick so she has to behave. Entire Monday, she kept to herself. Played while I rested. And easily took a nap when we asked her she needed to. She demanded to be read a story only once in the afternoon. Today (Tuesday) was a bit different though. But she really only demanded for a few minutes of tickle, tickle with Mommy and a couple of hours of playtime. I felt better today anyways so I'm glad I had the energy to give in to her demands.
- to have the luxury to really pick a time to explain to Maia the reason why she can't do this or do that without going really negative on her. And I could see that she's also paying a lot more attention when I talk in a patiently manner (slowly probably and without raising my voice).
- to finally get to remember how wonderful it was to really nap luxuriously in the afternoon. I forgot that feeling a long time ago (I think I last had the same wonderful experience during sembreaks in college way back...hehe nevermind).

I'm going back to work a lot more energized tomorrow. Today I can say with conviction that everything do happen for a reason. Even if you're forced to miss work on closing week. Wehehehe.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Emptying an Overfilled Bucket

I am suffering from 'writer's' block for so long now.

But there are mornings when i feel like my head's going to explode if i don't write down my thoughts. Often though, I'm caught sitting inside our company shuttle when this happens. And I have no choice but to weave the thoughts into stories that get stuck in my head. And end up written in air.

I wish somebody would invent an automatic mind reader. One that would transcribe every single thoughts that go through one's head. I would definitely be the first in line when this goes on sale.

Today, I have to sneak in and take some precious minutes off just to empty some of this thoughts out because i really feel like an overfilled bucket already. I tend to snap at people when I'm overfilled. The thoughts are somehow translated into emotional baggage, I guess.

I wish i had more than 24 hours to do all the things i'd like to do. Sigh. then again, i think a lot of mothers wish the same. it somehow goes with the job description. double sigh.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Sharing: Why Living a Life of Gratitude Can Make You Happy

A good read from Zen Habits


If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.” – Meister Eckhart

Many days, I try to humble myself and hold a 2-minute gratitude session. I simply sit or kneel, with no distractions, close my eyes, and think about what I’m grateful for and who I’m grateful for.

I don’t do it every day, but let me tell you, on the days I do it, it makes me very happy.

Why should that be? Why should the simple act of thinking about who and what I’m grateful for make such a big difference in my life?

Just a few reasons:

Because it reminds you of the positive things in your life. It makes you happy about the people in your life, whether they’re loved ones or just a stranger you met who was kind to you in some ways.
Because it turns bad things into good things. Having problems at work? Be grateful you have work. Be grateful you have challenges, and that life isn’t boring. Be grateful that you can learn from these challenges. Be thankful they make you a stronger person.
Because it reminds you of what’s important. It’s hard to complain about the little things when you give thanks that your children are alive and healthy. It’s hard to get stressed out over paying bills when you are grateful there is a roof over your head.
Because it reminds you to thank others. I’ll talk about this more below, but the simple act of saying “thank you” to someone can make a big difference in that person’s life. Calling them, emailing them, stopping by to say thank you … just taking that minute out of your life to tell them why you are grateful toward them is important to them. People like being appreciated for who they are and what they do. It costs you little, but makes someone else happy. And making someone else happy will make you happy.
What do I give thanks for, privately, in my little gratitude session? It varies every day. I thank all the readers of this site, for the encouragement you have given me, for the donations you’ve made that have made me that much closer to realizing my dreams, for the criticism you’ve given that has made this site better … for the time you’ve given me, just reading the articles when you have the chance.

I thank my loved ones, for all they do to me. I thank strangers who’ve shown me little acts of kindness. I thank God, for the life he’s given me. I thank people around the world for the things they’ve done to make the world better. I thank myself, for things that I’ve done (it’s important to recognize your own accomplishments).

How to Live a Life of Gratitude
The thing is, simple acts of gratitude don’t cost you much (especially once you get over the initial discomfort some people feel with thanking others). But they can make a huge difference.

If you’re interested in living a life of gratitude, here are my suggestions:

Morning gratitude session. Take 2-3 minutes each morning to give thanks, to whoever or whatever you’re grateful for. You don’t have to do anything, other than close your eyes and silently give thanks. This one act can make a huge difference.
Say thank you. When someone does something nice for you, however small, try to remember to say thank you. And really mean it.
Call to say thanks. Sometimes you might think about something nice that someone did for you. Perhaps you remember during your gratitude session. When you do, pick up the phone and call the person, just to say thanks. Let them know what they did that you’re grateful for, and why you appreciate it. Takes a minute or two. If it’s too early to call, make a note to call later. Even better is telling them in person, if you happen to see them or if they’re on your route. Almost as good is a thank-you email — keep it short and sweet.
Give thanks for “negative” things in your life. There’s always two ways to look at something. Many times we think of something as negative — it’s stressful, harmful, sad, unfortunate, difficult. But that same thing can be looked at in a more positive way. Giving thanks for those things is a great way to remind yourself that there is good in just about everything. Problems can be seen as opportunities to grow, to be creative. See the prayer below for more on this.
Learn a gratitude prayer. There are many prayers, religious or not, that can remind you to be grateful. Find one you like, and print it out or make it your desktop wallpaper. Here’s a religious one, and here’s a collection from a multitude of religions. You can find many others on the Internet, or write your own. If you’re not religious, make one that doesn’t include the concept of God. A good one is below.
Let me leave you with a prayer of gratitude that I’ve always found … well, perfect:

Be Thankful
Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.
~ Author Unknown ~
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