My little boy loves cats, dogs, bunnies and fishes, as you can see he's having so much fun with the cute kitty. When we played at the backyard kitty was so cute chasing insects flying around. 

Dear friends and readers, keeping up with this little munchkin takes practically all my time along with squeezing some home office works and wifey duty. JIF Photo Journal has been long neglected unintentionally, so please excuse the faulty commenting and all other technical issues. I have only been accessing my blogs through mobile and have very limited time to do so. It has been a very stressful and busy October for us that's why I'm taking some comfort writing some blog posts. I want to thank you all for continuously visiting and being part of my journey here in JIFPJ. 

{Little J and mommy made a very special Minion gift box for J's buddy. It's made of an old gift box cover & construction papers}
Yesterday we went for a little outdoor time, made the little joy chased bubbles, biked a little bit then walked to Walgreens. As we were browsing around, J found interesting toys and I started fishing out ideas for Christmas presents. He got hooked with one toy, the Hungry Hippo. He remembered how much he liked playing with his friend's Hungry Hippo. He had a hard time letting to of the toy so I told him he can ask Santa for it on Christmas.

A day passed and he hasn't forgotten about that little toy. Early morning he told me he doesn't want Chuggjngton anymore for Christmas, just Hungry Hippo. So I told him he can write a letter and ask Dear Old Santa his request. With much whining and fussing getting tired finishing the letter, he managed to do his letter. Now, Santa better make sure he gets the much requested present, a little boy worked so hard to finish that letter.


I just felt like cooking that night so I made Pancit Canton Guisado. I lacked ingredients, not even a carrot but still cooked it. We have no special guests to serve it to and it will be just our family dinner so it didn't matter much to me. Making sure the taste would pass my little boy's standard was my challenge as it would be his first time trying that kind of noodle dish.

Done cooking and the test was on, I passed! He was excited with the noodles and right after tasting it decided to eat on his own. Had to fish out the cabbages because he didn't like the texture, I knew it would've been better if I had carrots with it. We all had a lovely dinner, happy with the warm freshly cooked meal. Yummy! Second serving was enjoyed afterwards... A bit of spoiling for the night. 


Today is a rest day for us, no intention of going to park or any playdate. He's just started preschool and goes every Mondays and Wednesdays for 2hrs. Keeping up with the 9am schedule is a bit tough, along with it his changing nap schedule. He's almost weaning with the nap but apparently needs it from time to time as he gets tired and cranky if he has a full week of no nap. 

His preschool is nothing academic at this age, it's more of a play school pattern which works on child socialization and development. I decided to refresh him with his numbers, alphabet and writing his name. He's very good in spelling his name but not really writing it yet on his own. Little step at a time and he'll get there. We enjoy having him play and do fun things for now, make learning in different approach as well.

Errands day is tiring but nice in a way. We always try to rewards ourselves with Filipino comfort foods after a tiring day of errands. At first we thought of going to our favorite Pinoy BBQ Atbp in Milpitas but had a change of heart and looked for a nearer Filipino eating place. We found Jollibee, the beloved fast food almost every kid's favorite back home. It was a lovely day so we opted for the outdoor sitting.

See the little boy enjoying his own chicken joy lunch? That's quite a big meal for a little one so he ended up eating the rest at home for dinner. He was vey much savoring the cheesy fries, getting every last bit of the cheese.

We topped our yummy meal with a refreshing pearl cooler or taro shake. I can't remember when was the last time I had this drink. J tasted it as well but I guess he was too full to share with us. All of us went home with a smile, full and happy tummies.

We take J to the jungle gym on Sundays from 5pm til 8pm. They have a free play from 5pm on on Sundays so we take the chance for our little boy to play, explore and most especially burn the energy. 

At first you can expect his drama, crying and asking to be helped. It's pretty normal for him to just get into the mood for mere 30mins and worse when he still fusses about in an hour. Usually he'll end up meeting other kids and they will end ip all playing together. Once he's in the playing mood it's hard to follow him around as he keeps up so well with the bigger kids.

This facility is nice because it's indoor and there's an additional outdoor play area as well. Just be cautious and keep upur eyes peeled on your little one as it can be literally like a jungle there once super hyper big kids start playing through the maze. I feel bad when my boy cries when frightened by rough play but that's part of growing up. He has to learn how to play, interact and look after himself. 

The cable car is a famous attraction in San Francisco. During our visit last Saturday we decided to take J to ride the "trolley" as he calls it. It was rather a tiring experience because owe had to wait the qeue for 2hrs. It wasn't like that before, there was no long line and was very convenient. If not for our boy we wouldn't be patient enough to wait that long.  Good thing we were able to contain and keep a 3yr old busy during the wait. We didn't know what happened for real but according to the operator/driver, 2 cable cars broke down. There were other speculations amongst the crowd like upcoming strike , etc. 

Well, our little boy enjoyed the ride so much. He was singing songs and smiling from ear to ear. He was totally knocked out going back to the garage as he fell asleep in the trolley right after eating some snacks. Poor boy very hungry and sleepy, lucky us he didn't throw a fit. Had to carry him from the end station all the way to the parking garage in deep sleep. 
Hubs is trying to beat deadlines and doing much overtime. Whenever he needs to do overtime on weekends we try to keep him company. He wouldn't go to the office if there's no grave need, but this time he really needs to exert extra effort to keep up with the submission on Monday. We gave him a visit last Friday night and brought some dinner as well so he could go on and not starve himself. He was able to finish what he intended to accomplish but needs extra time over weekend.

Here we are right in daddy's office now again, it's Sunday and we all want to be together even if that means having to wait for him. Brought in toys, activity book, foods and gadgets to keep me and J busy. Cool that I get to blog even a bit and J occupied playing. 

It is important for an individual, a couple or a family to have their own quality time alone.  This is very hard when you are surrounded by many people but there will always be a window period when you can have that little quality time.  Regardless how it will be spent, what matters most is doing it for yourself, together with your dear partner or a fun time with your family.

I remember how me and hubs spent our 5th wedding anniversary last 2012 with our little boy.  We booked for an overnight stay in a hotel not too far from our place just to be able to spend some quality time as a family in a more intimate manner.  That was actually a brilliant idea because we had much fun even for that short one night escapade.  We don't mind having our boy around because we're enjoying every second of the time we can with him, time flies and he's growing up so fast.  

We're simple people, we don't need much activities to enjoy a family day.  Baby had fun playing with his trains alone for a while in the room, we all had fun swimming that same afternoon and then a nice quiet evening for me and hubs watching TV while baby J in deep sleep being tired from afternoon swim.  The next morning me and baby explored through the hotel and took some nice photos while daddy's still sleeping.  A nice breakfast for all of us to finish off our mini escapade.  Very simple indeed but we all had our quality time.

I know most couples would say it's hard to find time alone once you have kids.  It's true but there will always be time.  Some friends or relatives for instance might offer a babysitting for a little time so you can go out for a date.  As shy as you may be, don't always throw away the offer. Find the perfect time to take the offer and enjoy some time alone.  It may be as simple as just a lunch out or a movie, what's important is the fact that you don't need to watch after your kid while enjoying a meal together even for a wee time.  Have a drink or two, do something you haven't done for a while.

Perhaps not all couples will agree to our kind of quality time alone, this is just our simple way of doing things.  It won't be surprising if for some, a hotel booking in Executive Fantasy Hotels without the kid would have been more desirable.  Nothing wrong with that it's completely acceptable,  enjoying a suite of their own even for just a night would be their ultimate quality time. 


Whenever I think of Japanese foods I think of cute stuff. Won't you agree on that?  Bento for instance, arranged and served in a lunch box with much presentation.  Definitely kawaii!  The photo above is a small snack for kids given by our Japanese friend.  It's a cheese flavored sea creature crackers, very simple snack but so cute.

There you can see a squid, starfish, jellyfish, whale, crab, turtle, and other fishes plus an anchor.  The snack is hollow inside, so it gives you that crackling sound as you bite through.  Imagine the joy of a little kid munching on cute sea creatures as a tasty treat.

Another cute Japanese food thingy is the egg molds.  My little loves his hard boiled eggs molded into shapes.  So far we only have star and heart shapes, it would be nice to add some cool car shapes too.  Using this is easy, simply boil the eggs as usual then right when it's done and still hot you must peel it and put in the mold.  Don't make a mistake of putting it there after cooling it down, it will just mess the egg and you'll end up having a mess.  The trick is to run the newly boiled egg in cold water just enough for you to handle and peel it. 


Remember the post "The Shoes And Stick On The Sand"?  It took me a while to make another post due to some photo attachment issues in blogger that I have been experiencing.  Luckily today I was able to successfully upload my photos.  Here's the partial story behind the post "The Shoes And Stick On The Sand".

Every year we go to San Francisco to do our taxes.  It's quite a drive to go there but we have our trusted Tax Preparer there who's been handling our taxes for the longest time.  We take our tax day as a reason to go somewhere special around the bay area.  This year we went to Pacifica, located just 12 miles south of San Francisco along the scenic coast of the Pacific Ocean. Known for its natural beauty, Pacifica is filled with numerous hiking trails through rolling hills that overlook the ocean surf and forested canyons.

"Pacifica means "peaceful" in Spanish. However, the City of Pacifica did not receive its name from its Spanish foreparents. Pacifica's name was the product of a contest held in 1957 to find a name for the newly incorporated coastal city. The winning name was based on an 80-foot statue by sculptor Ralph Stackpole, created as the theme lady for the Golden Gate International Exposition. The Exposition was held on Treasure Island in 1939-40. The statue was destroyed after the fair was over but two of the sculptor's working models have been saved. One is over the front stairs at City Hall; the other sits in the City Council Chambers." 

So there, we went to Pacifica to spend some quality family time with our little boy.  We knew he'd enjoy the beach with the sand and the water.  I told hubs I prefer to stay under the tree to shield us from the scorching sun but to our surprise it was a hazy day.  Sun was completely shielded therefore it was freezing cold, chilly like winter!  Hubs was actually laughing at me teasing me about the tree shade I was asking for, it was so chilly even under faint sun.  Luckily we had all our snow clothes in the car trunk and managed to keep ourselves warm adding some layers.

See our happy boy gathering wet sand for his sand castle and few sticks?  It was too cold that we didn't want to stay near the shore.  Getting some "building materials" for little J's sand castle needed much effort walking to the shore and back.  Pobresito carrying a bucket full of wet sand, quite heavy for a little boy so he made mommy do the carrying for him after few rounds.

We have a little Architect in the making, he was being so crafty and creative trying to etch and put doors and windows on the sand castle.  I was even telling him not to be that detailed because I was afraid it would collapse and I didn't want to deal with crying and all.  Can you see the proud and happy daddy behind all bundled up as well?  It turned out to be a simple but special outing for us.  Having a picnic lunch at the beach and just kicking back some time.  We did more fun stuff later on but this is it for now.

My boy and I would often go for a walk around the neighborhood, carrying along our camera we would take photos of beautiful flowers along the way.  It's very nice to walk around with him because we get to be out and do a little exercise together.  I get to teach him road safety during our walks.  He's doing really good when it comes to stopping before nearing the crosswalks and staying on the sidewalk.  He was so terrible with that when he was younger, would often run off here and there.

Back to the lovely tulips, we took this photo near the library by the Ainsley Museum.  Every Spring the whole garden is planted with lovely flowers,  I love this photo because the tulips stand out with its vibrant colors against the green background.  Of course it's not photo perfect given our "playtime" camera but I love it.  J gave me a hand taking this photo or should I say I gave him a hand as he's starting to be intrigued holding the camera and taking the shots himself. 

There's a story how these shoes got to be on the sandy beach.  What's up with the stick?  Oh well, a little boy had to keep his stick together with his shoes.  Why did I post this shot which doesn't seem to mean anything else?  Seriously, I just love it.  Looking at the photo makes me feel nostalgic, it gives me the feeling that the shoes were just part of a bigger story, an experience which made memories.  For now I'll just let you ponder...

One thing that hubs didn't want us to miss is to see where he has grown.  To revisit the place where he spent much of his childhood.  What's this place called?  It's Alameda, an island city in San Francisco Bay. This island community has a small town with beautiful Victorian charm vibe, gives you that nostalgic feeling when you walk through and stroll around.  

I've been to this place twice and I wouldn't coming back for more.  Hubs would check out those spots where they used to play before and show it to our boy.  There's Crab Cove Museum but we haven't had the chance to visit that place.  Having our little boy, the beach is pretty much enough for us to spend most of our time.  Making sand castle with moat surely keeps us busy there.

Last time we went there our boy was so happy making footprints on the sand.  It's so nice to see him commune with nature that way, feeling his bare feet on the sand and getting dirty just like any normal kid.  We ran, dig some canals and chase sea gulls.... made some memories, that's what we did.


Can rain stop a little boy from enjoying a day out?  I guess not, at least for our boy.  You can judge from the photo that he's absolutely enjoying the rainy day.  Normally it would be a fight just to make him wear a jacket but when it comes to some splashing on puddles, he would be so eager to dress up and go.  

This is just one of those rainy days when we had to do some errands and go out in the rain.  It was just a light shower and the temperature was not freezing cold.  At first he was loving the walk without umbrella and I was the one holding it running after him.  It was just a pain to do that so luckily I wore my waterproof jacket and let him have the umbrella himself.  At first there was much complains and rejection but after having the hang of holding it, he was actually happily singing and hopping on puddles. 

I love having this kind of moment with my little boy, nothing fancy just plain old fun.  At least he'll grow up remembering he once played in the rain and wasn't just locked at home looking out the window.  We have to enjoy every moment, we can't stop the rain from falling, just like how I can't stop my boy from growing so fast....

It's not my birthday but this post has been way too long overdue.  I haven't really been blogging for the longest time due to work and mommy duties but for some reason I want to write about this special birthday present I received last year.  Indeed it's very special for me, my bestfriend sent this on my special day!  She's there in the Philippines and I'm here in US, still she managed to do something very special for me.  

I am not going into details anymore how she sent me this yummy red velvet with cream cheese frosting cake, all I want to express here is how I felt that time when I saw a huge box right infront my door.  I felt so loved and missed when I saw that present just when we came from our regular day out routine.  Hurriedly brought it in and opened with eagerness, not knowing who gave it.  Finally the surprised was unveiled, I got a cake full of love from my best-EST dear friend.  Of course it would have been nicer if it was her standing there waiting for me but that's too much to ask.  

Was it the cake or the present which made me feel so happy?  Well of course that made me happy but most importantly, the thought that came with it.  Across the miles my dear Che has pulled a big surprise for me.  I miss you bes...

This is the beautiful sight on our way to Tahoe,  snowy mountain!

Happy Valentine's Day To All!!!

J gets excited whenever I tell him we'll be baking a bread or cake.  Most of the time he'll request banana bread or cake.  Since he's big enough to be my little helper, he gets to do much of the "messy" job.  Of course you can expect mommy exclaiming (screaming) at times when spills are starting to take over the table.  First step, mash overly ripe bananas, add eggs and mix.

He discovered something else about baking, it's fun to lick and taste the batter no matter how much mommy tells him not to.  Those little fingers will find its way to dip and get some batter.  After adding the flour, vanilla, cocoa, etc., he gets distracted upon seeing a nice thick batter.  I told him it won't taste good as the cocoa hasn't been completely mixed and to think it's extra dark unsweetened.  Go figure!  Well, he still got a smile on his face before tasting it as you can see.

Almost done with the batter and little boy happier with the taste.  I keep telling him he'll get ouchie tummy, this and that but it never worked.  He's happily rewarding himself with his labor beating and mixing the batter.  That also explains why I don't use my electric mixer, imagine the mess and possible accident that can happen with a curious little chef like this one.

I finally managed to  pour the batter to the pans, obviously he's not done wit his fiddling.  I had to let him have the mixing bowl or else he'll start dipping his mucky fingers into the pans.  This little baker had to do everything that must be done, he insisted to put the pan in the oven which of course has been preheated already.  What can mommy do?  Covered his arms with the pot holders which looked more like long sleeves on him and help him at least place the pans on the oven grates.  He's happy enough to think he's the one to put it all in the oven to bake.


Tadaaaaa!!!  Finally done :)  One small heart shaped banana cake and a big rectangular one which cooked perfectly done, moist and soft.   The best thing about baking is that we get to control the sweetness of the cake.  He's not s used with sweets and we're trying to steer him away from sweets as much as possible so bake at home really works great for us. 

Happy boy eating his very own COCOA BANANA CAKE!  He chose the little heart pan for his cake, he said that's baby size and the rectangle one is mommy and daddy size.  That means he claimed that little heart pan is his all alone.  The best part of the baking.... spending some quality time with my boy!  You may hear me scream here and there when he starts to do naughty things or forgets not to do things but I end up laughing at it in the end. 


I love keeping some frozen turkey patties in the fridge as it comes handy when we all of a sudden crave t eat some burger.  We're not diet crazy family but we try our best not to eat junk foods much so we can introduce a healthier diet to our growing boy.  Of course I would love to have a bite of Burger King's flame grilled patties but sometimes we just need to settle with what we have at home.  

I always just improvise when it comes to cooking.  Not all the time I'll have all ingredients to complete a dish, this won't keep me from proceeding with my cooking.  Just like this HOME-burger that we had one of those dinners, can you spot what's missing?  Yup, lettuce!  No lettuce available in my veggie tray so I used my ever ready Sauerkraut.  Why not?

J is not so fond of burgers, I can count how many times he has eaten burgers.  I remember one night when baby asked me for hamburger after seeing it on a TV commercial while we were watching together, good thing I had the basics: turkey patty, cheese slice, bread.  It wasn't even a hamburger bun but he was pretty much satisfied after convincing him for a while to have a teeny weeny bite. 
Hello!  It's been so long since my last input here.  My boy has been growing and I have been missing so much time to share my little boy's fun activities.  He's almost 3yrs old now and it seems like days are passing by so fast.  His speech has improved a lot this past month, constructing simple sentences and learning how to put words all together. That also means he's starting to learn how to reason out, testing how to use his new found words.

I love seeing him playing most especially when he gets his hands with boxes.  he will pretend like it's his house, bed or whatever.  Of course those boxes don't last so long after a long abuse from active play.  Just look at how he's stretching out that box. 

One morning he got out of bed too early and went to his play area.  He was suspiciously quiet so I went to check, only to find him snug in a box.  I never thought he'll ever pay attention to that bin cart box since it's open on both ends and folds.  He eventually found his way on how to play with it.

This one is when he's the happiest, when he saw a huge box delivered that day.  He claimed it as his bed since it's big enough to accommodate his length.  Don't think it was just plain laying down on that box, he grabbed his blanket and pretended sleeping there as well aside from marching on top and doing all sort of things. 
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