Monday, December 24, 2007

Not so fast, Santa ...

And just when I thought that we'd finally be enjoying a regular, worry-free Christmas, here's what made this year unforgettable ...

1. Just finished my Christmas blog and thought I was done for the week and Zaki woke up almost at lunchtime and went straight to the PC asking to watch Spidey and Dark Knight trailers.

2. She did not drink milk all 12 hours. She still hasn't had any meal and we needed to give her daily medicines. We forced her to drink even a few ounces and sneaked in the meds and we thought that was it.

3. Now she started vomiting. For almost 3 hours, it never stopped. Tried several times to give oral meds but would just vomit again and again. Kept calm. Kept on giving water with rehydration solutions. We're a mess!

4. Left for hospital and back to familiar scene for us. Time was ticking and no way am I going to be reasonably patient, with traffic and hospital personnel. She was put on IV, gave steroidintravenously. She was back to bubbly self even with needle stuck on her left hand. Waited to finish almost 2 small bottles of IV and went home by 6 pm.

5. She was playing with her toys and being her demanding self. Made calls to family and friends that everything's fine. Guess, we spoke too soon.

6. By 9 pm she still wasn't feeding. So we tried milk again. She vomited once again and complained of aching tummy. We're too tired to keep an eye on her and felt weak to care for her ourselves. By 12, we're back in hospital.

7. She doesn't look weak, it's just that we were worried that she won't be recovering all the fluids she lost that day if she can't eat anything. And believe me, it is as if she coughed up a pail of fluids! Her stomach must be really quizzy! Submitted watery stools for lab (found out just before we went home that results were negative).

8. IV needle now on right hand but still as 'hyper' as ever. If you've seen her at the hospital, even with the IV dangling, you'd never think she 's sick or anything. We all got some good sleep, maybe except Leriz. (I was tired and felt confident already.)

9. "Tita Doc" the pediatrician came. We're cleared to go home but still no definite cause. I suspect that its purely CAH-related. Wife says maybe its time Zaki needed stronger dose and remembered that Zaki's been unusually 'head-sweaty' the last few days. Eerily similar 3 years ago just after birth when she was really such a pity to look at.

10. She has eaten already and drank a couple bottles of milk. Still bothered by quizzy stomach
passed watery but non-smelly stool but fine nonetheless. Mother and daughter are sleeping now as I get to catch a glimpse of them from time to time. Jut praying for the best.

Honestly, I was more angry than worried yesterday. I felt we were remiss, not providing the care that we should be doing and felt unreasonable looking for any clue proving that Leriz may have done something that contributed to Zaki's ailment. Felt sorry for that. Deep inside, I was angry at myself for what happened because ever since I became busy with work, Zaki started to have those episodes. Anyway, guess I should know better.

It wasn't till all three of us were in bed that it occurred to me that there was something different about Zaki. Even with CAH, I never treated her condition as special. Yes, we gave her medicines religiously everyday but still felt she was like any other kid. Special, yes but just like the others.

It was when we were in bed and I was watching MI3 the whole time, that Zaki never 'relaxed' for even 5 seconds. She kept herself busy, drawing, shouting, arguing with Leriz, singing and wrestling the poor pillow and really gripping it tightly between her arms and legs (Leriz even took out the rubber pacifiers which she bit like a pitbull). This went on for about the whole HBO movie. And it will take 2 more hours before Leriz and I pretended to be asleep so she'd shut her eye, too.

Deep inside, I just wanted to hug Zaki. I felt that she was struggling with forces beyond her - something inside, like hormones that she can't control. I was looking through her eyes and wanted to reach her but felt she was lost with all that energy that kept overpowering her. Physically and mentally, I think she'll be one of the strongest and brightest kids. Or a super hero perhaps. No kidding.

I just hope I will remain half as strong as these two very dear persons. There's no belittling CAH. I'll try to remember that.

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas is upon us

It has been months since the last post. Yes, been quite busy with work and the grind of being in front of the Macbook - searching, reading and typing really has taken it's toll on me. But there's no denying that the holidays brings with it a lot of positive cheer.

We're not talking of the usual gifts and presents here, though. As one gets, uhh, old certain material things just don't cut it anymore, even as Zaki continues to accumulate what I call ' week-long obsessions'. Christmas is much more than that, I bet.

It is about friends and families, and about doing something really relevant with our lives. Not to sound preachy but it's true. Doing things you love brings a lot of goodwill. But doing things, the difficult and the ones you'd rather avoid, out of love is empowering and magical!

And Zaki makes sure that we learn that ... Merry Christmas to all, Maligayang Pasko sa lahat!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Blog Action Day for the Environment

It is not Oct 4 but it sure feels like it. Why? Because 14,000 blogs and 12 million readers have united to make this day special. Just like the time when a simple man was recognized for his sacred devotion through his earthly mission. His name is Francis.

Anyway, St. Francis never really wanted anything extraordinary while he lived. Yet, people who have met him could feel how much he cared for all things. He spoke and listened to plants, trees and practically anything. He believed that divinity existed in all of creation and that to care for them is to return the gift of love he has received that he could do nothing else.

I have often taken this for granted. Yet, I can truly say that deep inside we long for the embrace of nature and its spirit-renewing qualities. We need not go someplace else to re-connect. Sure, the lure of majestic white beaches or nature parks can be quite tempting. But aren't the small patches of grass or the ordinary plants and trees within our surroundings just as beautiful and can offer solace because it still is after all, a part of the whole.

So, next time you water the plants or cut and trim the grass, think of it not as a chore but but a means of giving back and doing your share. For all we know, saving water or re-using/recycling things may just do more for you than anything else. For truly, each of us is a part of one big creation. (Photo courtesy of

Sunday, August 12, 2007

One's mellow and one's intense. Both blew us away.

It's been a while since Zaki and I were able to jam and listen together to songs courtesy of my playlists. The last few weeks, the only tunes we keep hearing were those I made with some Paul Weller circa Style Council plus some Kevin Tihista tunes because it was the only cd that my faulty - dirty car mp3 stereo has no trouble playing. And with my desktop PC still out of commission, and the limited songs I managed to keep in the Ipod, it may take some time again before we get to swing our hips and loose our heads again.

And so I thought.
Just can't seem to keep away from good music because we keep seeing the Signal Fire video from Snow Patrol. And being the Spidey freak that she is, naturally, in no time at all, we were singing along to the refrain (or chorus) complete with strumming the air guitars of course.

But surprisingly, it did not end there. Just when I was about to leave for work, we caught a glimpse of the featured band in the Letterman show. From the intense intro to the guitar riffs, we were completely blown away. It was like the first time we saw Interpol playing Evil live on youtube.

In case you'd like to know, the band that played Typical was Mutemath.

Check them out.

B'lated 2 and 8th bday, Zaki!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Hurry, Potter! End the Deathly Hallows

Deathly Hallows. JK Rowling surely knows how to pick her titles. Although she isn't revealing what the title means, most fans (and there are plenty, I guess) would finally be able to find out what it is 2 days from now. Unless, you've heard about the leak. Have you?

Well, Zaki couldn't care less about the new book. Obviously, because she can't read yet. All she wants is for us to surf the cable channels for Harry Potter movies or entertainment news clips of Daniel, Emma and Rupert day in and day out for the past few weeks now whenever we are all seated for a meal and the TV is turned on. Funny thing is, she's afraid of the villains and would often ask that we turn off it off after 15-20 minutes.

So, like many others who have owned and read the last 6 Potter books, we are excited on getting our hands on the last book. Nothing like a good read in one's hands but for now I may have to content myself with a file of the first ten chapters courtesy of one who we may never know who

Monday, July 09, 2007

Wonder of my world

It would be fair to say that I would never see any of the ancient wonders of the world nor the new ones even. Looks like even completing the new list wasn't spared by democracy and the internet so much so that the Egyptians found the idea of nominating the Giza for the new list as ridiculous (Somehow, I agree with them because the Pyramids are definitely shoo-ins.) But as with opinion, however the number of votes cast, there is a thing as 'to each his own'. I know what mine is.

Zaki's now another month older. She could count to ten (if you could decipher the words she chose to replace 6 & 7), her new tag line is Harry Potter (replacing Peter Parker & Spidey); she has retired her magnetic drawing board due to overuse (drawing lines and shapes before bedtime and calling them Doc Ock, Harry, sexy Hermione and Ron) and her favorite toy is a small 'The Thing' (of the Fantastic Four) which she brings to the bath and to bed everyday. It could have been 'The Silver Surfer' if she only knew how to pronounce it correctly but for now, even she is embarrassed with how she calls it that it won't probably be her favorite toy for months to come.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

So that she will know

About 4 hours ago, Zaki officially ended her 2 years and 6 months birthday celebration. We hadn't planned anything special really. We just had our usual afternoon inflatable pool bath with a bonus of afternoon rain showers which left us both parading on the deserted street in front of the house. Then she took her nap and after which, we proceeded to 'doh' (McDonalds, where else) for her fried chicken and rice meal. We just enjoy seeing her gobble the whole meal right down to the soda. Then, she'd make her way to the play area, usually to be the smallest among the kids which is cause for a little bit of worry.

Zaki is slowly becoming a little child now. If I were to write down what significant things she could do at this time, well she still couldn't talk clearly as much as we'd wanted her to but she does have those quirks that we love about her. (She just went to bed at around 1:45 am after halving a McChicken burger with me.) Foremost of which is singing or humming tunes. Most she hums to indicate that she would like to watch a particular 'bbd' (DVD) or just refer to a character while other times she just gets to hum with me because she saw it on Youtube and like her dad, came out impressed.

Here goes:

1. Spiderman theme (original cartoon theme with matching web-slinging actions and swinging till she has her legs above her head while holding my right hand)
2. Superman (John Williams orchestral theme complete with 'sad facial expression' during the non-crescendo part)
3. Batman
4. Raindrops keep falling (Spidey 2 influence, she knows Peter, Doc Ock, Harry, MJ, JJonah and a lot more)
5. Elmo theme

Honorable mention: Australia by the Shins and Just can't get enough by Nouvelle Vague live with Moby plus a bunch of other kiddie TV themes from Sesame Street, Harry Potter theme, Jeopardy theme and of course, Wowowee songs (Eeewww, teti!!!).

Can't say I'm keen on finding out what's the next thing she'd be able to do but taking poop in the toilet seems to have its appeal . . . or maybe just sleeping earlier than midnight!

Till next.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The Joys of Parenting Young Children = Wondertime

After almost a month of tantrum-filled weeks, Zaki has finally calmed down to manageable proportions and being with her isn't too 'toxic' as it had been. Don't really have a clue as to what changes we or she made but we're thankful for the last 3 days that we did not engage in 'battle' basically. As much as we'd like to teach her the finer points of behavior, I think I need them more than she does. Patience and understanding do work wonders for children if demonstrated by parents. That's it.

Speaking of wonders, there is this amazing resource online for parents. Wondertime packs a lot of sensible ideas and guides for parents of babies, toddlers and preschoolers. I learned a lot clicking through their site and topics that it kept me glued for some time. Discover it for yourself. and for your kids, too.

See what reading Sports Illustrated could point you to. Credits to them and Rand Cooper's article on Jared Jordan.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Movie theater newbie experience, Spidey 3

Despite occasional protestations from feminist and pacifist relatives, we weren't about to let Zaki down from her web of delight. So off we went to her first movie, Spiderman 3.

Surprise, she stayed awake and interested the whole 2 hours we were in the theater. During non-action scenes, she would be walking up and down the neon-lighted aisle trying to figure where the pictures coming from while during the scenes where Spidey or Peter Parker would be in their element, swinging or dancing, Zaki would clap and holler, to the delight (or scorn) of the pair in front of us.

Surprise number 2. Left hanging with great expectations, Spidey 3 failed to surpass Spidey 2 (probably the best comics adaptation) in lots of things especially story and screenplay. Good thing, we have Spiderman 2.1 (not 4) to look forward to watching at home.

Nuff said.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


By the look of things, most of the candidates who would be declared winners by the end of next week's elections would surprisingly still be, uhm, politicians - people engaged in politics. Now, is it that bad to be called as such?

Let us just consult the web for definitions of politics and maybe you'll find one that best applies to Filipinos.

My favorite? It is this one. (Read it and laugh - then weep because it's true)

(Does this have anything to do with Zaki, yes and no? Yes, because Zaki has become familiar with the names and even the gestures of the candidates based on the multitude of TV ads they have. And No. Because she is still to young to endorse a candidate, unless it is Peter Parker and with a bit of arm-twisting, she might get to do an ad for Kapatiran!)

Another one.

The issue of Corruption. Where does it start?

I know it starts with people who enter politics brimming with ideals but somehow end up addicted to the power and its trappings. It is a good time to examine it now especially with the inexplicably, horrible waste of money being put into TV ads. Just how much do these people want the position could only be answered by the amount of wealth poured into the TV ads. No wonder almost all would be filling their own coffers upon getting elected since campaigns are really costly. A TV ad costs approximately 40 million pesos as one candidate admitted. Imagine if this money just went directly to services.

Another sad fact is that those who are deserving yet have no money are just wasting their time. Better yet, rig a poll or a survey, and it might just do the trick even without the ads. I do believe it somehow affects voting strategies but it is a different matter altogether.

TV stations are part of the problem. Why? They are party to the 'prelude to corruption'. Unless, they give equal share to all (except the nuisance, but who isn't), they are unknowingly biased given the amount of air time they allot (and earn) for these ads. Are they being fair? Or is it just about business? Is it really service to to the electorate or
the wealthy candidate?

Whereto? Web. And even in our own little way, we hope to contribute to genuine progress and selfless regard to Filipino welfare.

Nuff said.

Whiz kid is a Filipina

I just have to write something about Mikki. With all the negative items on the news, her story is a breath of fresh air (like the ones you feel when you go out of Metro Manila and into the simple probinsya).

Nope. Wasn't too big on academics really (uh, sourgrape) but nonetheless, achievements such as hers are nothing to be scoffed at. As a parent, I could only pray that Zaki remain healthy despite her condition yet also dream that she finds inspiration to put effort and prioritize learning as a prelude to service to fellowmen. (I guess I have to find ways now to shift Zaki's attention from music and fastfood consumerism to reading and maybe, calculus - once she aces pronounciation of the names of her current obsessions - Batman, Superman and Spiderman)

Moving to the crux of the matter - Parenting Mikki. I wonder what milk she was fed when she was a baby? Was she breastfed or bottlefed? Did Mr and Mrs. Fudolig follow any ritual during pregnancy? Any thoughts on discipline methods? Just wondering, please.

Anyway, thoughts of the genius here. We could all learn something from Mikki.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Summer 2007

I'm sure Lola Nanay is watching us from the heavens. Really miss her.
(Photographer ain't that bad either)

Monday, April 23, 2007

Celebrate Earth Day everyday

It is summer and people spend a lot of time cooling themselves by going to the beaches and staying out while for those who don't have the privilege of air-conditioned office rooms, staying home means turning on the cooling systems and spinning the electric meters crazy.

But wait. I've read about this Earth Day though there wasn't that much fuzz celebrating it. Could it be because there are 2 days during the year designated as Earth Day or maybe, people just take everything for granted while majority has enough problems already trying to get by each day.

Nonetheless, all of us must do our part in ensuring that future generations still do get to enjoy breathing clean air and seeing a wonderful functional Earth as it had been during our younger days. It doesn't require grandiose actions, small, meaningful ways to help will do.

My contribution: Wear light clothing
when at home (or none at all, if possible) to beat the heat.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Mom and Dad are so over . . . parenting, that is

How many times have you seen or heard parents holding out their babies off environments not germ-free or not letting them discover the thrill of the playground because he or she will get sand or mud and/or they forgot to bring antibacterial wipes or lotion.

Well, know what,
medical experts are pleading with parents to stop with the anti-germ hysteria because rather than preventing illness in children, it's actually causing it, encouraging the growth of treatment-resistant strains of bacteria, and preventing kids' exposure in the healthy doses required to grow a strong immune system.

Now this is an all too common example about how over-parenting is counter-productive. Read more about Katie Allison Granju and 'The Over-Parenting Crisis'. (And yes, I, too, am guilty your honor).

Check the new links in Mouse Traps, cool parents and see how your skills match against the online gurus.

Saturday, April 21, 2007


Not really sure what the exact term means in Filipino but as far as I'm concerned, it refers to 'being at one with', to share a feeling or even deeper, empathize. The tragedy at Virginia Tech last week may not be the worst of tragedies given how people have been at war with fellow men, environment and even themselves. Yet, it doesn't necessarily negate the senselessness of it all.

But today, we're not just here at the far side of the globe. We are praying, we are hoping that families find strength, we are one with you in our thoughts, we, too, are Virginia Tech.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Portent of things to come

I've just come across a forum asking what are the things that generally make adults cry. Some list movies, others books while a number say that their kids, especially the time when they say their first words, never fail to make their lacrimals drip. Count me among them and if you want further proof, this video may be putting it quite mildly than how we envision Zaki once she straightens her vocabulary.

Be patient, video loading depends on what connection you are using, but sure is worth it.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

In Nick of time

Time for another glimpse into Zaki's life, so far. (So, who is Nick Drake? )

For those who want their kids to have a head start (who doesn't?) through expensive baby products, you may want to consider more traditional play and games instead. See here. And more.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

27th month

It wasn't too long ago that we were quite impatient waiting for Zaki to break out of her almost 20 hours of daily sleep and quiet inactivity for us to be able to spend waking hours to be able to play with her. Today, the irony is that we couldn't wait to put her to sleep (by whatever means, natural or artificial ?!) so we could at least get some shut eye and rest before she again darts and charges from the moment she wakes demanding full attention or else. Whether demanding to go outside the house or turn on the PC to listen and sing-along to her favorite TV themes from Batman and Spiderman cartoons or fly and jump endlessly across the bed pretending to be Superman (and dad, the projectile target), Zaki could be such a drain on a daily basis! Often times it gets too much and war ensues. Yet, at the end of the day, everything is forgiven because she really has come a long way and we're just as excited to see her progress the coming days till forever.

On another note, it is time to say thanks to family, friends and relatives who continue to provide support for Zaki. We owe a lot of people for the help they continue to provide us. Wait in the coming months for the long list to appear in this site.

Plug. Want an idea of how far Zaki has grown? Easy, just look closely at the page header, err, footer, err below header of this blog and look closely at the drawing. Just goes to show how important genetics and upbringing are to kids!