Sunday, May 12, 2013

April loves

Kimi, my eldest daughter, chided me last month, around the time I was quietly bearing a low mood swing but appearing brave and normal on the outside, that I hadn't gotten around to blogging about her own daughter's latest milestone--second birthday. 

I did take pictures of that Saturday in the small open space near the house where the koi and frogs thrive in a pond that was recently widened. Our Baguio friends and neighbors came to celebrate, including violinist Lolo Guido who played the birthday song and "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" to an awestruck Kai. Mira Abaño also brought her guitar and showed us her strumming and singing chops.
First encounter with a violinist
Luchie Maranan captures singing pre-teener Mira on her phone's camera
The April born and her cake
There's nothing like a Kai to help one have a reason to get up and get going, no matter the compulsion to stay like a big lump covered by a woolen blanket and not face the day while wishing for a longer night. Thank heavens for little girls, indeed!

I think what helped me heal little by little was the company of another young 'un, my niece Bianca L. Susi, and forever young at heart, my sister Suzy, who has been a committed preschool teacher for over 20 years. Suzy is also good at organizing a house, that is, separating the unusables from the reusables and recyclables. Good thing she didn't throw me out during an unproductive (writing-wise) period!

One afternoon, family head Rolly treated us to lunch at Sizzling Plate, the Cariño street branch. Kai colored away while awaiting her order of sizzling bangus (as usual, she ate only the belly portion while I consumed the rest of it). It was her first time to try the restaurant's airy sans rival, and she cleaned up her plate. Same with Bianca and Suzy. Rolly got the hint--a couple of days later, he bought an entire cake that lasted less than 48 hours.
Keeping a toddler occupied at a restaurant
Having bangs trimmed
Now for the hair at the back
Quiet and still at the salon
Finishing touch
That same afternoon, I treated Kai to a haircut. She was a cooperative client, bowed her head forward or sideways, following the hairdresser's instructions. We spent the rest of the day at Burnham Park where Kai enjoyed her first boat ride on the lake. She almost refused to leave the boat after the 30-minute ride around the lake. We went around the Orchidarium to pose among the flora on exhibit and for sale.
Beautiful afternoon on the lake
Sunny dispositions
Someone's thrilled to be in a boat.
Little passenger wants another go.
Bianca's thank-you letter, received last week, summarized how we spent April in Baguio:

Dear Aunt Lizzie,

Thank you for allowing Auntie Su and me to have a more than one-week vacation in your cozy house. I really enjoyed it there, especially eating in Mackenzie's kitchen (my ice cream sandwich), playing with Kai, watching at Mayumi Cinema, the beautiful places we went to and most especially Baguio's fine weather. I also enjoyed our 2-day letter writing. Oh! I loved it whenever we would play jokes with each other in funny ways, specifically The British Accent. HAHA! Okay, I guess that's about all of it. Thank you again!


Aunt Lizzie and Bencky were our codes for one another when we went through our British period (speaking with that accent associated with Queen Elizabeth and Dame Judi Dench).

I miss April, but not my brief low point. 

Till summer of 2014!
Just turned 11 Bianca and her niece by a yellow bamboo grove
Big kiss from Auntie Bencky
Photos by Babeth Lolarga and Bianca Susi
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