The Things I Never Blogged About Italy, Part II


Oh I forgot. Jon called yesterday? It must’ve been around 7 AM there. It was weird. And Mum said I could pick up but I heard a bunch of voices and no one was talking into the phone. I guess Jon didn’t meant to call me?

14:something Lol. So there are three kinds of spoons in this house [which we provided, mind; we’re not crazy enough to go all refined and get three types of spoons just because we moved to the land of refined food, even refined fast food]: regular spoons (no that is probably not their name, but what else would I call them), cafe spoons, and mocha spoons. The point is, we were having teatime (organized by Yeni, so cute […]), and I was having tea, and…
me: Is this the correct spoon?
Migi: Corrupt spoon? What?

So I went crazy with my lunch today. It’s Friday, no meat, right? so I… sliced up 6 cherry tomatoes, sauteed them in evoo, scrambled two eggs in the same bowl that I sliced up the tomatoes in so as to get all the juice etc. left behind and cooked the eggs in the same oil, sliced up one ball of fresh mozzarella, and piled it all onto deliciously crusty slices of break about 8 inches wide and three inches tall. Oh, and maybe a third of an inch thick. Crusty bread + cold cheese + hot scrambled eggs + warm tomatoes = Aisa feels spoiled. […]

16:13 I’m sorting files on my laptop and I found a file that’s Mum’s… notes about me as a baby… from Nov ’91 to Jan ’94. Oh I feel like sharing some :P idk why —
Aisa noticed her shadow today
licks herself in the mirror
gets excited about water although still wary at times
plays (with) the piano and gets really excited (kicks and coos)
loves the mall
doesn’t put things into her mouth automatically; studies it with eyes and hands first
still hates being dressed
loves rough play
120391, tuesday, 9:49 p.m.
– has a new hobby: pursing her lower lip over her upper lip and blowing air (and saliva) through them making a bbb/vvv sound. … gets mad when i touch something she’s playing with like today, she was playing with the hand/calculator (beeyin’s gift to bong) and i’d press the buttons with my fingers, she’d get a hold of my hand and push it away and make an angry sound. … still loves pens (for about 2 weeks now); hates it when i take them away from her; is quite successful about taking the caps off them. i then let her play with just the cap.
-is no longer that aloof or afraid of strangers or people that come to the house. … didn’t like resty at all, probably the moustache. wasn’t that scared of alex, though. likes ted a bit, looks like it. plays with him.
-when henry, etc. was here, didn’t mind when carlo took her toys but looked a bit puzzled. ventures to get her toy from carlo until carlo cries.
– seems to know that her toys are HERS.
121091 – tues
started babbling yesterday; mamama,lawavabanana (with tongue sticking out sometimes)
… makes “payabang” about standing up especially when people like lola, lolo and titos are here. … has been doing more finger biting/chewing lately. looks like her teeth are finally going to come out soon. sometimes i catch her trying to chew on the carpet. also tried to mouth the keyboard this evening when we were at lola’s. can gesture “kiss” by banging her face into yours, quite gently, though. … “kinikilig” last month or so, don’t know if it’s just a mannerism or if she is cold or what. .. can pick up cheerios but not coordinated enough yet to put it in her mouth. can take it there but usually cheerio goes into the space between her thumb and forefinger. … can crawl quite fast and sometimes plays at “catch”; “nagpapahabol”. gets really excited when she thinks you’re going to tickle or catch her. can pull oven door down. … says ‘me’ (short e) when calling me. has “babbling spells” sometimes, mostly when eating, goes bababa tatata, etc., etc., nonstop. when daddy plays keyboard with her, takes dad’s hands off and seems to want only to play keyboard by herself.
122891 – sunday
“fought” with Mommy last night, pushing her face away and pulling at her hair.
… “sings” with mommy or a singer on tv. … waves bye-bye or hello to almost anyone. loves strangers most of the time (talks to people in pediatrician’s office, in restaurant or in church….) … puts her thumbs on edges of book pages while holding the book, to separate the pages. turns pages while we read to her. sometimes backwards. … when in church wants to hold and play with/read missal or hymnbook. “sings”with fr. frank when he’s speaking as if in contest. also “scolds” ninong alvin as lola is doing so. .. laughs at her own humor (even when we don’t think it’s funny).
… Am here in the study right now, hearing Aisa’s voice recite in the background: “Big b, little B, what begins with B?”. When I left her room a few minutes ago, she was sitting in “her recliner” with “Safety First (Baby Mickey and Baby Gyro). Either she has gotten the Dr. Seuss book herself or is reciting the wrong story to herself. …
Aisa can also pretty much change her clothes herself. … It is irritating at times (although recently she hasn’t been doing this as much as she was a few months ago) to find her room carpet littered with dozens of clothing that she has put on and taken off. …
Has memorized a lot of her books: Madeline, Giving Tree (the short paragraphs, anyway), portions of her Dr. Seuss books.
Speaks unbelievably fluent Filipino, although now and then she tries a bunch of long English words: e.g., actually, recognize, embarrassed, sometimes, after. Also mutters a lot of gibberish interspersed with filipino and mostly english words when she’s playing by herself or pretending to read. Knows which people to speak English to and which to speak Filipino to: i.e., Mema and Alex are English-speaking and the rest are Tagalog.
Quotable quotes:
I will tawagan my daddy. (to Eatons’ parents, about 2 months ago.)
Aisa: Na-embawast (embarrassed) ako.
Mommy: Kailan?
Aisa: 1-2-3-4-5.
Can call people on the phone when I dictate the number to her. Has called Uncle Topey and Ninong Alvin at home, Papa and Mama’s work, Daddy’s work and Daddy’s voice mail. Also can answer the phone quite well, with a cute “hello?” and then a bunch of yeses that you can’t help but wonder what she’s saying yes to. Reminds Mom to answer the phone when Mommy sits still and waits to screen her calls. …
Also is very quick at picking up a tune. Could sing “I’ll Never Get Over You (Getting Over Me)” (Expose) at 2. … Right now I’m teaching her to sing ‘Sun and Moon’ from Miss Saigon and ‘On My Own’ (Les Miserables).

17:44 Mommy funny. Mommy had the TV remote.
Mommy: So, if I press ‘Turbo’ do you think the people will move faster?
Yena: You mean if you press ‘Turbo’, Daddy will work faster?
me: What?! No! Mommy means the TV people.
Yena: No, she means the real people! Nino will sleep faster, and Mommy will go the bathroom faster, and Ate will laugh faster!
Mommy: Well what if I press ‘Mute’? Mute. *points remote at Yena*


8:53 Good morning […] I’ve been up since 8… went online for about half an hour. We got in past 11 last night. I was already cooking!!! and all of a sudden Daddy come shome and yells (in a cheerful way) “STOP EVERYTHING! Time to go, let’s go!” Rotfl. So we went and had dinner with… I think 10? other people, if I counted correctly. Including Uncle Eric :D :D :D but he’ll be headed back on Friday. He told me they missed the GA… […]

So back to dinner, my order came first out of the whole table of 17 (I think) people, and I was done by the time anything else arrived. But I was not full. So I ended up having half of Migi’s pizza. That’s a whole pizza mind, not half of his slice. It’s a very thin light crust, so we finished the whole thing between us, Yena and Daddy finished hers between them, Mum had half of hers and Paco had half of his. And then we all had dessert. Ah, and I had red wine. Only about a third of an inch in the bottom of my glass (regular glass, as they had skipped me providing wine goblets for the adults). Absolutely delicious. […] we were discussing it, and Mum pointed out that she’s never really been a fan of red wine — I don’t know where I got that from, then — and yet she’d liked this one very much. It was good […]

So my battery is half out, and we’re leaving in a bit. Going to go pasyal with everyone from last night, meeting up somewhere and then deciding where to go. Should be fun fun =) I’m hyper. It’s always refreshing to hang with Uncle Eric, he never talks about anything I’m not interested in.

14:50 Just got home. Whooooo […] The sea is so choppy right now. Watching choppy seas excites me. […] We were driving along the coast and at some points the water was less than 15′ from the road. All the stores and restaurants along the coast are closed, the sand is blowing onto the road, and we went to a particular gelateria accross the street from the coast, and it’s on the bottom floor of a building at least five stories high, and the wind was blowing so hard, coming from the sea, that it was ricocheting off the building and blowing us towards the sea, it blew Paco’s hat off, and when we came out of the gelateria, I thought it would blow my gelato off the cone :P and we could barely breathe, even Uncle Eric said he had to catch his breath.

So we left this morning and picked up Uncle Eric and the other guys wanted to go someplace that was supposedly an hour and a half away? That’s what they said, Mum went and checked it on the GPS and it said 5 hours, but who knows. So they decided to go, but Uncle Eric wanted to stay with us and stay local. First we checked out two Churches. […] we’ve been to five since we got here, and there’s practically no parking, Daddy wonders where people park to go to Mass, sheesh. But the last one that we went to had a fairly big parking lot with a playground and a basketball hoop, so I think we’re picking up Uncle Eric again tomorrow for the 8 o’clock Mass. Then we went all the way up the mountain — what mountain, who knows, they didn’t name it for me — and it was FREEEEEZING! and I’m wearing a skirt and sandals? haha. And yet their are palm trees and cactuses up there. How warm can it get at that altitude?? so we got blown around for a bit, we only stayed maybe 10 minutes for pics and Mum and Nino didn’t even get out. I said we should go there again on the hottest day in summer because then it would still be considerably cooler than down at the coast. And yes, you could see the Adriatic from up there. Then we went to IPER for lunch and showed Uncle Eric around [the mall] — that’s where we go grocery shopping — and while Daddy and the kids went to Media World after lunch, Mum and Uncle Eric and I went around IPER. Uncle Eric is a kindred spirit […] =) He is such a foodie, and even better, he’s been here a lot in past, so he could tell us a lot about prosciutto making and the wine quality and how to guess if the Tiramisu at x restaurant is going to be good or not before you order it, so on.


16:25 […] Continuation of yesterday — After IPER, we stopped by a store, kind of like the Smithsonian Institute if that helps any, on our way to Dad and the kids, and we spent probably 15 minutes looking particularly at the glasses and spoons, which led us to talking about different drinks — cordials, for one, that was very interesting — and Uncle Eric decided he wanted to take the little spoons home — if they were the mocha spoons or the cafe spoons, I have no idea which one is smaller, so nvm :P

We found everyone else and went home [and Uncle Eric came home with us] and Uncle Eric and Dad and Mum and I napped while the little ones played on the computer. Mother woke me up to say that no one was using my laptop anymore and that I should go online. I ended up not going online for another 15 minutes because she called me into her room after I went and got the laptop from the boys’ room and asked what I wanted to eat on my birthday. So I threw out a bunch of things — among them were artichokes and talong and spinach and some creamy pasta with toasted breadcrumbs on top, Mummy? and Tiramisu and red wine — and then I spent the next who knows how long wrestling with the internet. I lost connection three times =) Bah.

After dinner, we watched the rest of disc 1 of FotR, and it was almost 9 when we got done, so we had coffee and… something… sfoliateli? who knows if I spelled that right; that’s what it sounds like xD and then Daddy took Uncle Eric back to his hotel and we went to bed.

This morning, they woke me up at 7, we picked up Uncle Eric at around 7:40ish, and we proceeded to the 8 o’clock Mass at the Church with the basketball hoop in the parking lot. Heh… we forgot the Roman Missal and the Magnifikid. So we didn’t have the readings in English. *looks sheepish* I actually haven’t looked, yet, so I still don’t know what the readings were today… *cough* I’ll do that in a bit.

We went to Auchan directly after Mass, another place where we do our shopping sometimes, and Dad and Paco and Uncle Eric and Yena went in, Mum and Nino and Migi and I stayed in the microvan. Poor Migs, I think he got bored with me and Mum because we were talking skirts and pants and shoes and left him to control the radio as he pleased… ehh. When the others got back, we snacked on croissants and baguettes and lady fingers. Oh, but these croissants were… well, they were croissant-shaped, but they’re not airy and flaky and buttery. They’re heavier and not flaky at all and they’re sweet. Eh, I don’t like them so much. I only had one and then about a foot of bread to make up for it.

=) […] I am used to discussing Catholic dogma with Mum and Uncle Eric, but it is always something else to hear Dad jump in. I love when Daddy speaks with enthusiasm about the Faith, because it doesn’t happen often. I’m used to me and Mum getting passionate in our discussions with each other and with other people, but Daddy listens more, so I get quiet when he talks about it because it’s so rare.

Daddy and Uncle Eric took us to the plant and we drove around and they pointed out the offices and where they had to walk to for lunch — it’s pretty far — among other things. Haha when we drove up, Paco yelled out, “THE AMERICAN FLAG! YES! THANK YOU!” which made us all laugh.

We proceeded to Megalo where we have not been before, it’s supposed to be the biggest [more American-typeish] mall in the area, so ok that sounded nice. What a laugh, though; we practically never go to the mall when we’re home, and now that we’re in Italy, we hanker after going? oh, and another thing. There was one night we wanted to go eat at McDonalds because I remembered from five-and-a-half years back that they fry their pies and it’s shaped differently, so amazing. But when we got there it was super expensive?! “Isn’t it ironic that you couldn’t pay me to eat McDonalds in the US, and yet here we can’t even afford it.” – Mum. I mean, c’mon it must’ve been 6 – 7 USD per sandwich. You kidding me? and I couldn’t find the apple pie, so forget that. Haha. We ended up at IPER that night, which was absolutely fine, I got spoiled again.

Anyway, the boys were saying as we walked out of Megalo that it was about 10% American mall-type. We discussed specifics, but I’ll only name one — do you see stands in the middle of American malls that are selling a wonderful selection of sausages and cheeses and beans and nuts and breads? There were plenty here. Oh it’s foodie world, alright.

So we had lunch there (AAAAAHHHH WHICH REMINDS MEEEE I HAVE SPINACH QUICHE LEFTOVERS THAT I WANT TO HEAT UP IN THE OVEN!!! HOW DID I FORGET?!?!?!?! oh well. later) and then we dropped Uncle Eric off at his hotel and we came home and I fell asleep almost immediately. When I woke up, everyone else was asleep, but then I guess I woke them with the clatter in the kitchen? I went and made myself a fresh mozzarella sandwich. And now Mum’s giving all the big boys their haircuts which they’ve been hankering after for days now, Nino’s asleep, Yena’s watching Mum and learning, and I am here in my room, offline, saving my minutes for later tonight… think I’ll catch anyone online? I hope so.

Hmm… I feel like I’m forgetting something… eh. Sorry. I’ll probably remember sometime :P


10:31 […] Chat room with Stevie and Mariel and Kim Kim last night… well. Last night for them, this morning for me. I caught Kim at 23:30ish my time, she said she’d be back at 9… haha she was late. She got back at 10. But I was on 2 – 4, so ok. Whooooo […] I’m mad at myself for leaving all my favorite reference book back home… A Philadelphia Catholic in King James’ Court… Till We Have Faces… Life of Christ… Mere Christianity… Catholic Christianity… Rediscovering Catholicism… MY TOB BOOK IS AT HOME… gaaahhhhhhh. […]


10:12 Mmm I’m in Mum’s room, Nino’s sleeping here on the bed behind me =)

10:41 OUCCHHHHH I brought my hand up and it slid against the sheets of cardstock next to me and now I have cuts on the backs of two of my fingers and they are bleeding and they stingggg. Bleaach.

11:03 Huwaah baby boy woke up because his shirt was wet.  […] My hand is still bleeding. Haha.

Mua-ha-ha [bwa-ha gua-gua… etc.] 3.5 hours from now, I can legally purchase alcohol. Being in Europe has its benefits.

12:48 Huh… I turned my laptop on because I thought of something I wanted to say. And now I’ve completely forgotten. Bleh. Maybe if I just keep typing, it’ll come back to me. Uhm… so Mum’s making lunch. I’m having eggs and salami and rice and baby artichokes… artichokes are ridiculously cheap here, like practically everything else; have I been telling you anything to the contrary about food? besides McDonald’s anyway. Haha. Oh, ALMONDS. Almonds are ridiculously expensive here. There we go. Hmm… Oh, so we had a short talk the other night… Nino wanted me to stand up and dance him around, and I wondered aloud what it must be like to want something and know what that is without thinking “I want…” like how does that work for him? He wants to *feel* this now or *see* this now or *taste* this now… and we just completely lose that capability when we begin to learn language. Life is so simple when you only desire what you need because you cannot comprehend anything that you don’t. And language is such a barrier at times. Mum talked about the bond that forms between the child and the parents, the child and the siblings. It’s something to muse over, the way that bond is formed without language, you learn to respond to the child’s needs by instinct. And then we learn to speak and learn to desire the things we do not need and we grow up and question and rebel and fight… It’s almost as if learning language causes us to trust less than we did before. The dynamics change due to the ability to converse with words, but it becomes a barrier in that we fail to trust, then, that our parents respond to us with the same instinct and protectiveness that they did when they had to do so without our being able to say anything. I guess it’s the same way with God, isn’t it? As we learn more the language of the world, we pull ourselves away from the language of God. […]

13:48 So we took a walk yesterday, it was warmer, so I went without my coat, and we went in the back alleys this time and there were parts that Mum and Paco were creeped out by, but I thought the graffiti was cool (probably ’cause none of us can understand it anyway? so I could just appreciate the art of it, lol).

16:27 Well that was fun. Mum gave Nino a bath, and I learned that baths exhaust babies even if they’re not actually crying or only complaining softly and not anywhere near bawling at all. She gave him to me to be dried and dressed, and then he wanted me to stand up, so I did, and he was asleep within 5 minutes. So we napped for… oh my. Must’ve been about 2, 2.5 hours.

23:21 […] Surprise parties are exhausting.


It is a beautifully sunny morning :D :D I walked into the sala today and was like oh, all clean. And then I walked into the kitchen and was like WHOA all dirty. Hahahaha.

13:08 I guess I got up at around 9. I am delighted to discover that the dishes of a party of 19 people fit into an Italian-sized Miele xD Haha. I loaded the dishwasher before I had breakfast, which was lasagne, and I had half of it outside. It’s chilly, but the sky is the most beautiful blue that I’ve seen it since we got here. Or maybe I’m just in a good mood, I don’t know :) I took Nino right after breakfast, and then Mum had him for a bit, and then I took him again and took a short nap with him, read some stuff, practiced violin…

So last night… haha.

The truth is that Yena did let slip that there was a surprise party =) but I didn’t tell anyone that, because they would’ve ribbed her about it. Silly girl :D

I woke up yesterday […] Mother had me email Daddy that we were out of coffee. […]

I told you that Nino napped with me for a couple hours. Mum had told me that she would wake me in half an hour to give one of the other kids a turn with him, but they didn’t wake me. […]

Well Nino slept and slept and he actually did not wake of his own accord, Mum came and said he needed to eat, so I slept for a bit more, and then I got up and cleaned the kitchen. […]

Uncle Eric and Daddy came and we kind of sat around, and I asked if Uncle Eric was hungry and he said he’d be good with a drink of water. *ebr* They all teased me about that afterwards… “Eric? Not hungry?? You should’ve KNOWN that was a lie!” They were also saying that I wouldn’t believe how many phone calls went back and forth. lol.

Well not all 14 (oh it was 14) came at once, I think they came in 7, and then 2, and then 5. Ok, yeah, that makes sense, ’cause I’m pretty sure the Brazilians all came together at the last. They’d brought three bottles of soda, a jug of water, and four bottles of wine, two red and two white, 6 L of wine all told. By the end of the night, the red wine was completely gone, but one bottle of white remains unopened and the other bottle has a good 3 inches left in it.

I think my favorite part of the whole night was when they sang happy birthday, because they sang it in English, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, and Tagalog :D Let me see… dinner… we had 2 kinds of lasagne (one was vegetarian), pork (that Mr. Lou and Uncle Eric insisted tasted like turky and Mr. Balt was arguing that it wasn’t xD), green beans and then another veggie something that Mum cooked that I just ate without knowing what was it in (I know there were onions, idk what else; oh and I was amused because Ms. Lina [Italian] was asking how Mum had prepared it because they apparently do not prepare veggies that way… something about the ‘usual’ way being boiling and salt-and-pepper-ing, but not sauteed in olive oil and lemon juice and salt-and-peppered and balasamic-vinegared), and Mum had also made pasta (creamy with beef and mushrooms) at my request, and… hmm. I feel like I’m still forgetting stuff. Now, dessert… There was a tray of canolis and a cream cake and a fruit tart and Mum’s homemade Tiramisu.

I didn’t want a fuss about opening the presents — normally everyone gathers ’round — so I asked if I could just open them in the corner with Migi taping. Fun fun :) a new backpack and a bracelet and pocket money (HOORAY! haha, I’m technically broke from my laptop).

Mummy funny. She called me into her room halfway through the party and chuckling she goes, “Ais. I just realized something. What’s an 18th birthday party?” “Uhm… *racking brains* I… don’t… know?” “18th party is a coming out party.” “Oh geeze, Mum…” “Well? It’s an adult party. And you’re drinking with them.” “Ma…!!!” I didn’t drink that much! Honest, I didn’t. They only filled my… plastic cup… lol… halfway, and I didn’t even finish that, I must’ve left a quarter inch. […]

17:03 […] So Mother cleared up some things at lunchtime. Mum and Dad [and Nino] had gone out on a date Monday night. They intended to do the shopping then. But Italians don’t have frozen food. They have frozen pizza, yeah, but everything is really from scratch (and that’s why the food’s so good, you know?), so they ended up not getting anything Monday night. So Daddy went shopping on his lunch break the day of, and he came home for lunch, but also to drop off food. How he snuck it in under my nose, when I was sitting in the dining room having lunch when he came home, is beyond me. But apparently the food was hidden in the master bedroom and in the freezer. (How did that happen, I totally missed it?!?)

22:18 The kids played my battery away tonight. Hehe.


15:01 […] I went and got Little Voice. So far I’m loving it. More than Within Temptation when Asher told me I had to check them out… oh, Asher. He still won’t tell me where my children are.

17:42 Well Yena had a scare. I guess she was leaning so far over that her legs were both off the floor of the balcony and Paco pulled her back by her legs. *sigh*

22:33 Uncle Eric came over for dinner =) We had pork (Italian lechon lol) and rice and four pizzas. I didn’t join in the conversation much… not because I didn’t want to but because there’s so much to learn from Mum and Dad and Uncle Eric just by listening… there was talk of the economy… the ups and downs of past that of course they remember… oh this one video I think I sent out to the YFC… politics… anti-Catholicism being the only accepted prejudice in America today… […]

22:54 […] I was just saying to Mum how I feel like the more tired I am, the easier it is to laugh and be silly. […] Daddy’s playing with Nino, I can hear him from here. Well, that’s cheering.


One comment

  1. it’s “sfogliatelli” with the “g” silent

    gosh, ais, you don’t even remember the names of the churches? buaha. i’ll be honest. i don’t either.


    the pasta was with beef and pork! (bovino e suino)


    ps i miss editing your papers so humor me

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