Arroz Caldo

Mikayla learned to make arroz caldo the other day from Arlene, our helper and really great cook!

1 tablespoons oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (2 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
2 1/4 pounds chicken pieces with bone or boneless, skinless chicken meat
1 tablespoon fish sauce
5 1/4 cups water
1 cup glutinous sweet rice
1 cup white rice
salt and pepper to taste
3 green onion, chopped

Directions Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat; cook and stir the onion, garlic, and ginger in the hot oil until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken; cook until meat is done. Stir the fish sauce into the pot, cover, and cook another 2 minutes. Pour the water into the pot. Add the rice and sweet rice and stir. Bring the mixture to a boil; cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to assure the rice is not sticking to the bottom of the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with the green onion. Serve with soy sauce

Reflections at 40 days

40 days since Jerard died.
Seems sur-real in some aspects.
There are still mornings I walk down stairs expecting to see
him sleeping in the sala like he used to.
Occasionally I pick up his picture and rub my nose on his nose in the photo.
Grief washes over me at times
It robs me of energy
Some days seem so long and cumbersome

Sadness feels etched into my soul.
The loss of Jerard is deep

I miss him
I miss his feel
I miss his soft breath on my neck
I miss his drool on my shoulder
I miss the sounds he used to make
which actually ended two months before his death when he
had his major seizures on March 7 and lost all function; becoming limp like a rag doll, unable to move on his own:
he didn't bang on his tray anymore, or laugh, or smile.....
I started grieving his loss then

I miss rubbing my chin on his head
I miss rubbing noses with him
I started that with him when he was little
as my special kiss to him - Eskimo kisses - nose to nose
he'd laugh, he'd smile when I did that for him
and we had a bond
when he was upset
he'd settle with me
he loved graham crackers
he loved pancakes
I fought for him
I wanted the best for him
I sometimes questioned if I was the best for him...
but God's grace used Jerard to teach each of us so much

I loved you
I tried to do the best for you
I may not have given birth to you physically but I birthed
you from a sick with pneumonia, hydrocephalic 9 week old,
to a relatively healthy, blind, special needs little boy with so much to offer.
you taught me so much
I thank God for you, Jerard.....
I miss you
my arms ache to hold you again....
my little guy....
I love you

So, today, in honor of the Filipine custom to celebrate the 40th day after death we lit a candle at your gravesite, put fresh flowers there, reflected on memories of you, ate pancakes and graham crackers in your honor.....

As the song, "A Visitor From Heaven" states:

With aching hearts and empty arms.....
We send you with a name
It hurts so much to let you go
But we're so glad you came
We're so glad you came
A visitor from Heaven
If only for a day
We thank Him for the time He gave
And now it's time to say
We trust you to the Father's love
And to His tender care
Held in the everlasting arms
And we're so glad you're there
We're so glad you're there

I am thankful you are in the presence of Jesus!
I'll see you again some day!
Love you so much my son!

Sharing a Prayer

I have pondered this prayer since my teenage years.
I awoke this morning with it going through my head and thought I'd share it with you all.

"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury,pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen
St. Francis of Assisi

Through the Fire

when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.
Isaiah 43:2

Walking into the kitchen about half an hour ago I smelled gas and noticed the oven was on to bake something but the flame was not flaming.
I had opened the oven door to check on that.

Without thinking I just pushed the reignite button which promptly resounded a loud BOOM as the ball of gas that had built up in the oven and surrounding the stove/oven ignited into a fire ball.

The hair on my head was singed;
the hair on my right arm is singed off;
my eyebrows are partly singed;
my forehead and right arm feel slightly painful....
but I am thanking God for protecting me and not having any major fire or burns caused by my not thinking.

So, I'm heading to my hair dresser this morning for him to fix my hair!

I've been very absent minded since Jerard's death. So I am thankful God is protecting me!

14th Birthday Celebration