Monday, January 30, 2012

Give a Lot

They say it is better to Give than to Receive.  This is so very true.  Subconsciously, one is receiving when he is giving.   And one secret to receiving more blessings is to Give a Lot.

I used to hoard things at home when I was young - in grade school (my mother said so, but I cannot anymore remember, hehehe) and high school. Even with my old stuff, I refuse to give them away.  I don't know why but I just like to hold on to them.  But as I matured, I've learned to give some and then more.

Probably, my mother's generosity eventually has rubbed on me.  Growing up I watch my mother selflessly giving to those who has less than us.  Even though my father's salary was just enough for our basic needs, she still find ways to give.

And when I was already working and have money of my own, I have experienced many times how blessings return a hundredfold when you start to give, and a lot.

I could remember way back in high school and through college during Christmas time, my sisters and I would pack candies, biscuits and 20-peso bills in small cellophane for my cousins in Zamboanga del Norte which my grandmother and aunt would bring home with them.  And when I already started working, we included clothes and other stuffs.  My sister would bake a cake for them.

With the devastation caused by Typhoon Sendong, I became a witness to the generosity of people who offered their time, effort and money in helping the victims of the flood.  And I have two very good examples of generosity at a time of need.

The owners of Jacko's Carwash and Kan-anan.   The family lived in Luinab and their house was not affected by the typhoon.  But, their Carwash, located at National Highway, Barangay Hinaplanon,  was badly hit by the flood.  And it was just newly renovated.  The tutorial center of their daughter was just newly built, about 2 months.   Fortunately, the kitchen area of the Kan-anan was spared.  It was still intact.  To which the owners said that it is a sign that they will still continue their business.  :-)

 Water level outside Jacko's the morning after the typhoon.
 Front of Jacko's Kan-anan. The kitchen is the orange room.
 Tutorial Center, totally damaged including all the equipment/appliances inside
(photos grabbed from Facebook Page of Lovette Jam Jacosalem)

What's amazing for me is the way the owners still thought of helping the other victims in spite of the fact that they too are victims.  On December 18, they cooked food good for 100 persons and Pat and I and other IBS members helped in delivering it to San Lorenzo Parish Evacuation Center.  And as if not yet satisfied, they made three more sets of meals for the other evacuation centers which was delivered on separate dates - 2 sets of 100 packs and 1 set of 300 packs.   This is what I only know of personally, but I heard, they gave more than just these packed meals.   Wow, really amazing.  

Lolly, My Mother.   I have mentioned earlier how I grew up with my mother's generosity.  I thought after what happened with them in Bayug after the typhoon, I'd see a different mother.   But was I surprised.

My mother, collecting the stuff they could still use.

About five days after the typhoon, after all the mud inside the house have been cleaned and my parents and sisters have somehow settled, my mother decided to go to Bayug riverside to check on her friends if they are alright.  And to know how she can help them.  My mother, father and sister argued over this issue.  My father and sister would not want her to go because it might give her more stress as she has not yet fully rested from all the cleaning and sorting of flooded stuffs in the house.   But she insisted.   So, for two days she went out helping her friends.  When I learned of this, I told her not to go out anymore because she needs to rest.   But she was not convinced so I suggested to her that if she really wants to help, she can join our group.  I thought that I could watch her if she's with us.  But she declined. She said she doesn't know the people we are helping.  She prefers to help her friends in Bayug. 

I thought the situation over.  And on December 24 I told her that if she really wants to help her friends, I'll help her.  We decided that since it's going to be Christmas, she can cook some food on the 25th and they shall give it to her friends in Bayug riverside before lunchtime.   At least, even with the calamity, they'll have something special on Christmas Day.  My sister shared the expenses with me.  My mother was so happy.  Aside from this, she also would patiently fall in line in their area for the relief goods given by different groups.  If they already have the items in the house, she'd give these items to her friends who also needs them.    :-)

It is good to give when one has so much.  But it is heartwarming and joyful to give when you only have enough or less yet you managed to give.    The joy of giving is seeing the happy face of the recipient.  And knowing that in some way or another you've helped ease something in his life.  

To Give a Lot is when we give to people who cannot in any way repay us.   This, for me, is the true essence of giving.  So, Give a Lot today and experience happiness!   :-)


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Thankful Inspite of "Sendong"

I am supposed to make this post on December 31, 2011, the last day of the year.  But I was so exhausted from the day's activity I slept after arriving home from a dinner with my parents in Bayug.

Then on January 1, 2012, I thought again of writing this but was not able to.  I got busy cleaning my room, for the new year, hehehe....   And in the afternoon and evening I was too tired again to write.

Anyways, all I really wanted was to give thanks for all the blessings I had for year 2011. 

I am thankful for my new found friends - the Iligan Bloggers Society, Inc. members.  In less than a year, we have grown to become a family - helping and supporting each other.  

Thankful that Joan's boyfriend, Vincent, has finally come into terms with Mama and Papa, after many years of waiting for it to happen.

I am thankful for the opportunity given to me to have new experiences in my life. 

Thankful for the good health.  For my husband, Pat.  For my family.  For my friends.  For Pat's family.  For Pat's friend.

And when "Sendong" hit Iligan City,  I had so much more to be thankful for.

Except for our 6 dogs (my sister who has been taking care of them, is missing them so much, but still she was thankful that the dog died in our house and she has the chance to bury them.), I am thankful that my family was spared from death.   The things in the house damaged or even the part of the house that got damaged can be repaired, but the life of a family member when gone is gone forever.   With all my parents and sisters saved, I am forever grateful.  I am still given the chance to spend more time with them.  To give to my parents and sisters all the love I could give.

Even with Iligan River is near our house in Tubod, as we were amazed that the flood did not reach our area, I am very thankful that it did not.  For if it did, nobody would have been able to help my parents in Bayug in the morning of December 17.  Since my parents decided not to leave the house, we gave them whatever they need to make them comfortable while the house and the things are being cleaned. 

Thankful for Tita Meriam, Pat's aunt who lives across our house in Celdran, for letting us use their Multicab vehicle for 3 days to transport us and the things we need to bring to my parents' house.

Thankful for my two cousins who came to Iligan from Dipolog to help my parents clean up the backyard, although it was only for a few days, but it was a great help nonetheless.

Thankful that I have not yet spent the P10,000.00 the government gave us as additional bonus.  It was definitely a great help in purchasing the immediate things needed by my family.  And before the calamity happened, I was even wondering what to do with the extra money.   Little did I know, it has already a purpose.

Thankful that I forgot to give to my sister the money to buy them a new stove before Christmas.   I bought the stove after the flood, hehehe, on December 18, 2011.  It was still before Christmas.  :-)

There are some other things I would have wanted to buy for them in Bayug, but was delayed.  I am thankful that it was.

Thankful that I have not yet confirmed my Consolidated Loan at GSIS.  I already plan on renewing my loan in November and had even listed the things I'd do with the proceeds.  But cancelled my renewal because of some discrepancies in the posting of my payments of the current loan.  With the damage caused by Sendong, I am thankful I have not yet made my loan renewal.  At least now, I have some money to use for the repair of my parents' house.    :-) 

Thankful for the financial assistance extended by Ate Luz, Pat's elder sister.    Thankful for Pat's family specially Ate Amy, Pat's eldest sister, for allowing me to use her room in Celdran.  I let my sister stay in Ate's room for two nights while she was an out-patient on medication.  We decided to not let her go back to Bayug first while she's still sick.  In case of emergency, the hospital would just be nearby.

Thankful for Joan's boyfriend for staying with her in the hospital while I was attending to Gagang in Celdran and Mama was in Bayug taking a rest.

Even though my parents and sisters got sick after Christmas, I am thankful that the illness was nothing serious and that they are now recovering.  My other sister was already able to get back to her work.

Thankful for my IBS family and the volunteers who shared their time and effort in helping bring relief goods and medical treatment to the victims of the flood. I was able to work with with them in the first few days of operation.

Thankful for the prayers made by friends and relatives.

 Photo from
Of the many images I found in Google, I chose this particular one.   Why?  The candle reminded me of the many nights my parents and sisters in Bayug were using candles to light them during the night while the electricity has not yet returned in the area.   I am thankful for the light the candles have given them for all those nights.   And just yesterday, they already have electricity in the house.  And I am thankful the refrigerator still worked.  They can now eat freshly cooked food (not anymore canned goods or processed food, my mother is not supposed to eat these kinds of food because of stomach problem, but has no choice) since they can now store food. 

Gratitude to thank God in spite of "Sendong" and gratitude that we can still light a candle in the dark. 

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