Oh yes! The whole family had fun on the road trip to Baler, the provincial capital of Aurora Province!

After four hour drive, we reached our first destination, the 500-year-old-or-so Banyan tree which is locally known as Balete tree or Millennium tree. Around 50 adult people, arms outreached, are needed to cover the diameter of the tree. I cannot distinguish the trunk from the roots but because of the hollow it created, it’s amazing for the whole family to be ‘inside’ the tree and for the boys to attempt to climb even for a few feet only. The vine served as a good swing too!

Balete/Millenneum Tree

 

Balete Swing

And now I will mention this. We could not have enjoyed Baler because on the expressway we had a near miss accident involving a trailer truck. Good thing my hubby was alert, he avoided collision by steering instead to the center island where we hit bamboo fences for a growing tree. Surprisingly, Pearl (our car) is okay – no scratches. We were all shocked and shaken – shocked and shaken.

And so when we reached Bahia de Baler Garden Resort and served with buko (young coconut) shake, I remember how shaken we were earlier. I am simply thankful to God for leading us safe and happy to see my family together.

Bahia de Baler

Oh yes, the buko shake was good – and so the glass bottles!

Buko Shake

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Cool! The other good things in Baler!

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Dicasalarin Cove. Breathtaking! Breathtaking! We held our breath on the way to the cove. The road is narrow, winding, and steep. If not for the breathtaking view we would have forgotten to exhale!

steepy road to dicasalarin cove

Dicasalarin Cove

The place is breathtaking! I haven’t mentioned that yet, right? As the place is secluded, the paradise is ours!

Dicasalarin Cove

I love Dicasalarin Cove! I love Baler! Because I found the biggest heart rock so far! A good family souvenir for Baler Road Trip!

Baler Heart Stone

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Sabang Beach. It’s the beach front of Bahia de Baler Restaurant (built between Bahia de Baler Garden Resort and the beach). Fronting Pacific Ocean, Sabang Beach is one of the surfers favorite where the waves could be really huge especially when the northeast monsoon wind blows. The place is now very special to me just because I watched my kiddos surf, surf, surf!

Bahia de Baler Dining Area

Benedict Surfing in Baler

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Digisit Beach. We love the place! Why? Because there are stones and boulders – my daughter and I love stones and boulders! Because there are tiny fishes – my boys (of course that includes my hubby) love fishes! Because the sunset is breathtaking – we (including the group of photographers) all love it!

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Digisit Beach

Digisit Beach

Digisit Beach

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Falls, falls, falls. True. Along the road there are a number of mini falls amidst the lush greens!

Digisit Falls

mini falls

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Tromba Marina Sculpture. A reminder of the people who run to Point Baja Hill (now known as Ermita Hill) hoping to be saved from the tsunami of December 27, 1735. The catastrophic tsunami is said to wipe the old Baler town in an hour. Heart breaking.

Tromba Marina Sculpture

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Ermita Hill. There are around 300 steps to the top of the hill where the Miraculous Cross stand. Leg breaking – for me but not for my kiddos! And not for the seven families who were saved from the wrath of the Tsunami on December 27, 1735.

Ermita Hill

Ermita Hill

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Museo de Baler. It’s hard to miss it with the sculptured mural. The museum housed significant traces of Baler’s history. There are Chinese porcelain from the Galleon Trade, old reports…

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Paintings in Museo de Baler

Chinese Porcelain

Old Letter

The museum also relive the Siege of Baler thus the paintings of the siege participants – both Spaniards and Filipinos.

Filipino Spanish Baler Siege

Filipinos in Baler Siege

And yes, there was President Manuel L. Quezon. And the kiddos have the chance to mano (Filipino gesture of respect).

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They have to give respect especially that they clung to his Presidential car! The car was built by General Motors of America and arrived in the Philippines on November 4, 1937. It was turned over in 1938 to General Douglas MacArthur and was used all throughout his duty in the Philippines.

President Manuel L. Quezon car

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Dinadiawan Beach. It has a beautiful shoreline that I have to wake up at 4:30 AM to catch the beautiful changing color of the view before full daylight. To catch it we need to stay in another resort — the Dinadiawan Beach Resort.

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Dinadiawan Beach

Dinadiawan Beach

Dinadiawan Beach

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There’s more to love in Baler. The mountains, lush greenery…

Trees in San Luis Baler

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And yes the suman (sticky rice roll wrapped in palm leaf)! Suman is real good that I forgot to take picture. Believe me we’re not hungry but we got to taste it — sorry if we can’t help but eat them all!

Thank you so much Baler — till we meet again!

Bahia de Baler

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Thank you soooooooooooooooooooo much Lord for your awesomeness!

Bright clouds on the way hom

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You alone are the Lord. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you. – Nehemiah 9:6

🙂

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Phony Checklist

08/18/2012


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Image Credit: Google.com, Kim Riding A Horse
For Bluebell Books Twitter Club Short Story Week 25
*
CHECKLIST:
Wedding Ring – For 10 fingers
Wedding Gown – Vera Wow
Groom – Willing
Menu – Hmp fries
Cake – sweet six footer
Transportation – Cardash
Marriage Certificate – Tearable
Pen – With eraser
Priest – Keeping up
Guest List – You’re not invited!
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Kim        : That’s the final 95th page of our wedding checklist!

Willing   : Are you sure you haven’t forgotten anything — your shoes?

Kim        : It’s on the 27th page — shoes by Gossipy Shoenotti!

Willing   : What a memory! You won’t forget me, right? — wink

Kim        : I have you in my mind. Our marriage will be a success! – wink wink

 

Most of us have checklists in life to ensure that we have everything in place; that the outcome would be as planned.

Checklist for a perfect wedding – CHECK!

Checklist for a happy family – CHECK!

Checklist for a safe trip – CHECK!

Checklist for immediate promotion – CHECK!

Checklist for a gold medal – CHECK!

Reviewed the wedding checklist 100 times. All efforts made to save the family. Car checked prior to road trip. Dedicated work for the promotion. Intensive training for the gold.

We are ready. We are equipped.

But the victory belongs to the Lord. Everything depends on Him.

Got to trust Him. Not the checklist.

His idea of victory might be very different from ours.

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The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the LORD.

– Proverbs 21:31

🙂

Think About It

03/03/2012


Blessing shows up

And finds you

Pouting

Scowling

Indifferent

Angry

You think you will be able to see it?

How, when your upper lip covered your vision?

Think about it

Inhale deep.

Don’t exhale yet.

Not yet

Not yet

Nottttt yet!

Now, exhale!

Let it out – the baggage

Out of your heart.

Now lift the side of your lips, with your facial muscles.

Turn on your eyes – yes, like a light bulb, so bright.

Why, you look funny!

But wait, you’re lovely now

Now that it turns to sincere smile and knowing eyes…

🙂

It has been a crazy month. The laptop crashed, the company I am working for is sold for the 2nd time, our section is challenged to generate more savings on top of the $2M saved, I worked extra longggg hours in the office for a number of days and I was attacked with depression.

But think about it, I am so blessed. I have challenges, kiddos who hugged me tighter, hubby who missed me, lovable friends who checked on me and the pillows? Cloud 9 and 10!

Thank you Lord!

“The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” – Numbers 6:24-26

🙂


Relaxing music, cup of tea,

Warm bath, fresh linen,

Lavender-scented pillow, soft bed

Could help you have a good night sleep.

But there’s a cheaper alternative

Be good tired by doing your best the entire day

With no harm done to anyone.

Please click for other days.

It’s Day 8 of Feeling Good! Your body aches, you are crawling to bed and your eyelids lost its power to open up. You did this to yourself. You did the best that you can and now you are on your way to reap your reward – a sound and delicious sleep!

Go ahead, claim it and feel good!

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe.

– Psalm 4:8

🙂


– Rabindranath Tagore


– Unknown


– Unknown