Saturday, January 4, 2014

I Love The Snow

Based on Dr. Seuss' "I Love My Job"

I love the snow. I really do.
I love the white stuff more and more each chilly day.
I love to frolic in the snow; it’s fun to play.
I love to shovel, just the best exercise.
Got sore arm muscles, but hey, no more black ice.

I do love the tall snow drifts and the brown slush.
It is so beautiful my heart turns to mush.
The winds are fierce and brisk, oh man, they do sting
Dig and sneeze, dig and sneeze, I merrily sing.

I love sub zero temps, oh, it’s bitter cold.
Never mind the aches and pains, yes I am old.
My nose, ears, and fingers are a-freezing
Just walk slowly, hey no more falling.

I love the ED patients with their ankle sprains
So many slip and slides, and even back pains.
Let them come, EMS, bring them our way
We are ready, they're most welcome to stay.

I love the winter storm and the blizzards
And the cars that crawl like lizards
Oh, how pretty are the traffic lights
In the dark, blustery, slippery nights.

I love the snow- I’ll say it again- I even love the friendly Sanitation men,
Those Sanitation men with their snow plow who salt the streets and even my car paint away.

Jan. 21, 2014-
Hello! Never heard these weather terms before. First, "polar vertex", "polar plunge", then “bombogenesis”. It's a term coined by meteorologists to describe an area of low pressure that “deepens rapidly,” creating a strong storm, or cyclone, that intensifies as it moves over the ocean. This crazy weather that turns an already long one-hour drive to three hours. Arggghhh!
I love the Snow. Not.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Year That Was and The Gift of a New Year

As the year 2013 ended, it gave me much comfort to come to our church in Forest Hills for our Year-End Thanksgiving Prayer. The brethren gathered together in reflection of the year that was, and to pray for the year that will be. Even as New York City was in the midst of frenzied preparations for the ball drop, we bowed our heads in silent retrospection and gave thanks to God.

It has not been an easy year. Tragedy struck the Philippines, first the earthquake, then the super typhoon that had demolished Eastern Visayas.

Four special people passed away this year (Uncle Alex, Amy, Phyllis, Jennifer). Each one of them will be missed. When someone special had enriched your life and had touched your heart, the sadness comes from missing the grace or the knowledge of their presence. We can only hold onto the memories in our minds and give thanks for the gift of knowing them.

Because I am an eternal optimist, I look at the past year as a glass half-full. I was blessed.


Who says I can’t go home?

After twelve years, I came home to the Philippines. This time, it was not to mourn my father’s death from a stroke attack. This time, it was to see my family, my mom, my two brothers and an extended family quite unlike any other.

My calendar of activities was filled with places to visit, things to do, people to see in just three weeks. I wanted my son Jordan to experience the land of my birth. He was just ten years old on his last visit; and this time, he came much prepared, his Tagalog vocabulary was much more extensive although still heavily accented with a New York twang.

The Filipinos are known for their extended families. A vacation brings all the cousins back to reminisce our childhood escapades; sometimes it’s the only time when the Cerrudo clan gets to see each other again.

I loved the food trips. Trying almost every restaurant in the mall and sharing the bounty with relatives. Bingeing on fruits (santol, lanzones, mango) and Nanay's home-made cooking.

Experiencing the Walled City of Intramuros. Soaking in the ambience of a world gone by- of old houses during the Spanish era with the wide lattice windows and open verandas. I could almost feel the ghosts of senoritas strolling around the paseo as they cover their faces with the fans.

Riding the calesa around Intramuros. Even if the horse looked scrawny and apathetic, unlike the beautiful horses in Central Park, it knew how to do a proper u-turn in a narrow street.

Jose Rizal's execution site in Luneta. As soon as we saw this tableau, I felt deep emotions at the sad scene of Rizal executed by the Spaniards, all in the name of patriotism. The sculpture pieces were amazing; they captured the life and death of our national hero. It was a history lesson for Jordan.

BALUT!!!!! “Fear Factor” audition recorded on camera. To see the look of utter disgust on Jordan's face- PRICELESS!!!!

Finally, I am thankful for the chance to hug my mother again, tightly but not long enough to last me till my next visit. In her 80’s, she is still a fireball of energy and humor; someone who will break into her funny chicken dance when the spirit moves her. I need another vacation; I want to tell her in person again how much I love her.


I love my job. It has its share of challenges and stressors, but I know I have risen up above most expectations, mostly mine. The future holds more opportunities for me, more pathways to explore. So, since being a Clinical Nurse Specialist came up number two in the article "Best Jobs in America", that means, I'm doing alright.


Jordan continues to amaze me. He graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelors of Science degree in Biology and Chemistry. He dabbles in a strange world of molecular biology, genomes, genetics, polypeptides, mutagenesis, quantum physics, and whatchamacallit. He dissects mosquitoes in the lab, and plans to pursue doctoral studies in research. I might have my own Dr. Nye later on. A scientist who also plays the piano. Even though he does not still clean his room.

I guess, like mother, like son. (the cleaning, I mean)


1. Choose the people who whisper things in my ear. I choose to surround myself with friends who are trustworthy and with co-workers with no hidden agenda or crab mentality. I will treasure friends, near and far, who grace my life with their presence.

2. Look for things that inspire, and uplift. Life is too short to waste on inconsequential people. I will draw my strength from those who give positive energy and inspiration, despite all odds.

3. Go for it. Live life with great appreciation for the gift of living and be not afraid to explore where else life can take you.

2014, I am ready for the gift to be unwrapped and to let my light shine even more. This year is another gift from God. Ready to face whatever life brings. This year, I am looking forward to celebrating the one hundredth year of the Church.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” - Marianne Williamson