Saturday, December 25, 2010

What is YOUR gift for JESUS?

It's CHRISTmas morning here in the Philippines! Hurray!

I can't sleep as I am still stuffed from our Noche Buena here at my in-laws' house. Hubby and the kids are fast asleep already so I thought I'd share a touching Christmas moment we had earlier.

After our bedtime prayers with Tim and Rysse (though she was asleep already beside us, hehe), we asked one another, especially Tim, what gift we had for Baby Jesus' birthday.

Papa: What is your gift for Jesus, Kuya Tim?


Tim: What's our gift po Mama?


Mama: Let's give Jesus our hearts.


Tim: No, no, Mama. We shouldn't give Jesus our hearts. 


(Pause. I expect him to say something silly. What he says takes us by surprise...)


Tim: Our gift to Jesus is us - me, Papa, you and Baba G (pointing to his sleeping baby sister.)


(Mama and Papa hug Tim and tell him how right his answer is.)


What a timely reminder from one of God's little angels!

That CHRISTmas is not just about the gifts we give to each other or receive from others, but about what we can and should give to CHRIST. After all, He is the Reason for this season! :)

How about YOU? What is your gift to Jesus? :)

Let's take our cue from Santa and pay homage to the King of Kings, not just this CHRISTmas but always.

A HAPPY AND HOLY CHRISTMAS TO ALL! :)

Friday, December 24, 2010

A CHRISTmas message :)



As we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, we thank the LORD for all the people who have come into our lives and become a source of blessing, hope, inspiration and learning for us as individuals and as a family. This year is very significant in our life as a missionary family, as after five wonderful and challenging years of mission in Timor Leste, we have finally come home to the Philippines. We continue to surrender to the Lord's plans for us and our children, and know that He has a bright and beautiful future in store for us.

It is the first year that all four of us were able to celebrate our birthdays with those closest to us. Alyssa Therese "Rysse" turned 1 year old in July, and is now a walking, signing, semi-speaking, precociously pretty toddler. Timothy Alan "Tim" turned 4 years old in October, and is fast growing up into a God-loving, temperamental but totally lovable, intelligent preschooler. We are enjoying our time with both, and plan to formally homeschool Tim next year. 

As for ourselves, Anthony and Tina, we have been serving fulltime under the CFC International Missions Office since we arrived, but will be moving on to new exciting assignments come January. 
 In the 6 months that we have been home, we have learned a lot, have been blessed to attend and serve in so many inspiring and empowering activities in and outside of Couples for Christ (CFC); some of which include the CFC 29th Anniversary Celebrations, the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Mission Fun Run and Missionaries Ball, the enlightening financial education lectures by the IMG-Wealth Academy, the hard-hitting 3rd Philippine Homeschool Conference and the refreshing Kerygma Restoration Conference; plus mommy-related activities organized by L.A.T.C.H. Philippines and Mommy Mundo. 

Through all of these, and our encounters with family members, co-missionaries, and friends, old and new, and our beloved CFC community, we have learned more and more about how the Lord calls us to LOVE LIFE and LIVE PASSIONATELY; i.e. He wants us to be holy, happy, healthy AND wealthy. In connection with this, we have been blessed to be able to start a small business on the side (Pure Passionistas), which we hope will help advocate our passion for Pro-Life. Tina has also been able to fulfill her passion for writing by becoming a contributor for Smart Parenting.
 

 
IN ALL OF THESE, WE ARE GRATEFUL TO GOD, AND TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU, FOR MAKING 2010 AND THIS CHRISTMAS ONE OF THE MOST MEANINGFUL TIMES IN OUR LIVES. 

May the LORD continue to bless and guide us all not just this CHRISTmas and New Year, but all throughout our lives!

From our family to yours,  A BLESSED BEAUTIFUL CHRISTMAS AND A PEACEFUL PASSION-FILLED NEW YEAR TO ALL! :)

In Christ,
Anthony and Tina :)
Tim and Rysse :)
Thank YOU for being a part of our journey. 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Extra Income For The Homeschooling Mom (or Dad) :)

Image taken from www.webmarketingphilippines.com
Most homeschoolers can testify to the fact that living on only one primary source of income can be quite tough, especially in this time of global financial challenges. In fact, it is very common for homeschooling parents, usually the moms, to have alternative sources of income to augment the family's monthly cash flow. In my other blog, where I write more about enriching one's faith, family and finances, I have posted several entries about tips for those who want to make a little extra money on the side.

I am sharing the links below for those who may be interested in earning extra income. Hope this helps you somehow! :)


If you have tips or reflections of your own to share, please feel free to leave your comments or links below! :) Let's live a passionate life by being all God wants us to be, and helping our kids do the same! :) God bless everyone! :)

P.S. Here are some resources that may be of help to you in your search for extra income:

Let's claim our financial freedom in Christ, the Source of all our income and blessings! :)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

More Smart Parenting Online articles! :)

I was delighted to find out that two more of my articles have been published online at the Smart Parenting Philippines website!

The links to the articles are provided below. Happy reading! :)


5 Tips To Keep Your Preschooler Entertained During Long Car Trips

Parent-Rated: A Review of Starfall.com


P.S. In one of the articles, about preschoolers and long car trips, I was able to mention and in a way "promote" two businesses that are run by mompreneurs: Mitzi Nguyen and Raquel Benares of Peapod Baby and my friend from way back when I was still in Youth for Christ, Anna Meloto-Wilk of Human Nature. If you would like me to feature or review your products or services for Smart Parenting Online, please feel free to e-mail me at teachermamatina@gmail.com. :) Thanks and God bless us all! :)

DIY Printable Nativity Scene

My mom and I have been talking about setting up the family CHRISTmas tree with the kids in the household and  plan to get around to it sometime this week. We were also talking about having the older kids and preschooler kids make a nativity scene that we could display somewhere in the house. I told her I'd look around online for a good resource.

Then I realized that I'm subscribed to Mommy Lacy's Catholic Icing blog, which is full of great Catholic crafts and activities. (You are really Spirit-led Mommy Lacy! Praise GOD for you!) I found a great link for a DIY Printable Nativity Scene there which looks easy enough for the kids to do, and could make for great bonding time as a family! :)

Here's what the finished product is supposed to look like:
Photo courtesy of Mommy Lacy of www.catholicicing.blogspot.com
Can't wait to do this with Lola Tita, Tim and his cousins! :) Will post pics once we're done! :) If you want to try doing this too, just go to Mommy Lacy's blog post here. Feel free to share pictures of your finished craft! :)

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