Monday, April 21, 2014

Sophia's Carnival Party (Part I)

As some of you know, my daughter Sophia turned 1 several weeks ago. We celebrated this happy milestone with a vintage carnival party held at my in-laws' beautiful lawn (Thanks, Mamacora and Papato!).

I'm so excited to share with you these photos from Zeus Martinez who gamely covered our event!
Big, big thanks to my friend Jaz Distrito of Sweet Nest Candy Buffet for helping me with the party styling & set-up... and basically with every detail of the event!
It was a real treat for me seeing and hearing the oohs and aahhs of our kiddie guests as they took in the sights and sounds of Sophia's Carnival!
As they say, "It's in the details!"
Sophia's lovely cake that was uber yummy too! I got this as part of Sweet Nest's candy/dessert buffet :)
Bringing in "personalized" water bottles was actually a last minute idea, prompted by the heat. I loved doing those tags the night before the party! 
Team Sophia

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter

"That's what happens when LOVE finds YOU."

Because Jesus lives, we can face tomorrow. Because He lives, all fear is gone. 

Have a meaningful Easter, everyone :)

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Best Parenting Philosophy

I was reading the book Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman when it struck me how there must've been too many--and too different-- parenting philosophies in the world. Attachment Parenting, Independent Parenting, Child-Centric Parenting, Family-Centric Parenting, not to mention the unnamed culture-based schools of thought... the list really does go on and on.

I recall that when I was a new mom, I agonized a lot about whether I was doing the mother thing right. I must've read a whole library of parenting books. In fact, I still do gobble up those books! All in the hopes of broadening my knowledge about how to raise children.

And why not, right? Two lives--two futures--depend on me and my husband!

To be honest, just thinking of the huge responsibility and the 1,001 ways to handle it is daunting. Even scary. I've lost count how many times my heart broke when something wrong happens to my kids and I immediately think, it's because I'm not raising them properly.

In this day and age, it is so easy to blame oneself for a whatever befalls and becomes of our children. Picky eater? Oh, that's because you didn't introduce this food and that at the right age. Tantrums? Oh, that's because you're too "soft". Not a talker? Oh, that's because you didn't read this and that book to him when he was young.

It's downright crazy.

And silly.

And yet, completely desolating.

The wonderful news is that we can choose to trade our (inevitably) losing battle for a yoke that is light to bear. In Matthew 11: 28-30, we can read Jesus' invitation to walk with Him. Jesus said, "Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly."

I'm certain Jesus wasn't talking to parents alone; but I'm also pretty sure this invitation tugs at every parent's heart.

It's difficult being a dad or a mom; more so when you do it on your own as a single parent. Like I said, I've lost count of the frequency I've cried over mothering. So when the going gets tough, I remind myself of these words from Jesus Christ. After all is said and done, and I feel the tiredness of being mommy, I can choose to just walk with Him, give Him my burden, and rest.

Then when my heart is at rest, my mind clears up and I remember that though parenting philosophies abound, ultimately, the Lord asked only one thing from me as a mom: My commitment to train my children in His ways and to teach them about Jesus Christ by living as an example of my faith.

Simple and straightforward. Not crazy. Not silly. Definitely not desolating.

Now I don't know about you, but I think that makes for the best parenting philosophy.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Monogram Love

One of the perks of naming our kids with the same initials as ours is that we get to have a "family monogram" :)

Makes me giddy: Our "names" all together in 3 letters! :)
I've used this as a home decor (framed it and put one on a wall). But I still plan to use it in many various ways! Like on notecards, gift tags, napkin holders, etc etc!

One day, I will also ask someone to make a pendant for me with this design :) :) :)

I wish I could claim I creation rights to this, but no--asa pa!--I had this made through Etsy! (That site and Pinterest just keep me up late at night! So many pretty things!!!)

Happy and pretty Thursday, everybody!

Monday, April 07, 2014

Sprucing Up The Home

As some of you know, I am in the middle of designing and improving Casa Esquivias. With 2 kids and a career, though, I have no choice but to tackle it slowly, which is fine by me because I really get to think things through, plan and re-plan the design & functionality of a space or certain furniture pieces, and of course, manage the budget.

On a regular day, I dive into this pet project after work. I find that it's quite therapeutic and a great stress buster! 

For the past few weeks, I've been working on this space, our living area:
I got new throw pillow covers and an area rug, and then hung travel photos of our family. Here's how it looks now:

Pwede na diba? :) 

I'm still waiting for my accent chair though. I'm so excited about it because it's one of the key pieces in our house that i chose to invest in. Abangan nating lahat yan!!! :)
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