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Santi’s Thanksgiving Party at Stacy’s BGC

Stacys BGC

A year has passed by so fast and this post is actually really, really late – 6 months late to be exact. This post has been sitting in my draft folder for quite sometime because I was lazy to fix all the photos and the details, haha! But here it is, Santi’s 1st Thanksgiving Party at Stacy’s BGC.

For some reason, I have stopped writing because 2017 has started on a really rough patch [note: my husband had an open heart surgery in January…another late post for another time, sigh].

We initially planned for some “big” celebration for Santi, although as early as November of last year, something was really telling us to put aside the money that we have intended for his 1st birthday bash. In retrospect, everything really happens for a reason (proven for yet one more time in our lives) because that money was meaningfully utilized for husband’s surgery.

Nevertheless, that didn’t stop creativity to flow.

Edzel and I knew that we could not not celebrate the gift of life of our “firstborn” so we planned a little thanksgiving party for Santi’s 1st birthday and the husband’s new heart. We kept our invitees to a minimum (which I am sure our friends would have understood) and only invited our families and Santi’s godparents.

After much mulling, I chose Stacy’s BGC because it was a cozy venue with very little styling to do. 🙂 Almost everything was DIY like his baptismal party.

Stacy's BGC

Stacy’s BGC is very cozy.

It can only accommodate up to 50 people, when you use up the two levels. In our case, I had the buffet table set up at the ground level so it’s not too crowded at the second floor.

Stacys BGC - Santi's 1st

I decorated the place with some floating balloons (again). It gave such a happy vibe to the place.

Stacys Philippines

Most of the decors were DIY, recycled from Santi’s baptismal party. All I needed was my trusty Canon printer and I was all set 😉 I just printed the photos from Santi’s birthday photoshoot by Yellow Sun Studio and used the frames I had at home.

Since I did not have the time to DIY his party hats and bags, I ordered them online from Party Treats by Glaiza. I was so happy with the end-product. Don’t you agree? <3

For the menu, we got the light merienda package from Stacy’s. This is only available for 3 to 6pm parties. Here is the inclusion:

Grilled Shrimp and Pomelo Salad in Asian Dressing
Hearty Chicken Melt with Apples & Grapes
Potato Chip Fried Chicken with Mushroom Gravy
Spicy Shrimp Scampi with Angel Hair Pasta
Chocolate Cake Slices or Cupcakes with Theme Colored Icing and one (1) round of Iced Tea

The main centerpiece was this lovely woodland cake from Bake and Brew. I got the dessert bar package of Stacy’s to complement the whole setup.

There was no formal program. It was really just a catch-up session with our guests.

Santi with Mommy and Dada

Santi with Mommy and Dada

So there you go, hope you enjoyed our little DIY woodland theme. Here is the list of our suppliers:

Venue, Food and Dessert Bar

Stacy’s BGC

Forbes Town Center, Rizal Drive, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City
(02) 555-0140 or 0926-6752571 or 0923-6711750
Email: stacyshomecafe@gmail.com
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/stacysresto

Cake

Bake and Brew Cafe

24 E Saudi Arabia St., Better Living Subdivision, Parañaque 1700
(02) 738-8427
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/miguelandgabrielbakeandbrew/

Party Bags and Hats

Party Treats by Glaiza

Instagram Page: https://www.instagram.com/partytreatsbyglaiza/
Viber:  0915 8645 208

 Floating Balloons

Fria Balloons

0917 3277951 and 0915 6502713

Photography

Yellow Sun Studio

99 Kamias Rd, Diliman, Quezon City, 1102 Metro Manila, Philippines

Basti & Basti

Before we near the end of October, which is the pregnancy, infant and child loss awareness month, please allow me to honor my two little angels, Basti and Basti, in heaven. 

For those who have not followed our journey, Eggy (that’s the husband) and I have mourned many years before we were able to celebrate the arrival of Santiago. Before Santiago, we had Juan Sebastian I and Juan Sebastian II – my little Basti & Basti.

But we were not meant to be parents to my little Bastis then. We lost them even before we got to know them.

It was a very frustrating time. Tears were shed, hearts were broken, harsh words and actions were thrown; all these because of hurt and anger and hopelessness.

After we lost Basti II, we found out that I have an auto-immune disorder that was causing our losses. One of the more known condition for this is APAS. But in reality, APAS was just one of the three categories that made it difficult for us to bring our babies to term.

Eggy was more optimistic than I was. But his optimism waned as months passed by when we could not conceive. And then one day, we stopped asking. We just lifted it up to Him and prayed that if He wouldn’t give us the grace to be stewards of his young ones, then so be it. We would just live our lives in a beach house with our fur babies.

But God surprised us with a positive pregnancy test, the month after we have declared surrender. No fertility meds. No follicle monitoring. No nothing. And we laughed and cried. We also greatly feared.

Luke 1:36-37 “And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.”

Our journey was long but we were lucky to have hundreds of prayer warriors who flooded heavens with prayers; we also had two little angels probably singing to God to give us their sibling.

For this, I was and am eternally grateful. 

If there was one thing that this ordeal has taught us, it is this: God is in control. 

We thought that we would never hold Santi. We thought that we would only have our two little cherubs in heaven but none in our arms.

But our journey has proven otherwise.

My body rejected my babies. We thought we were barren. But in His time and with all His medical, financial, emotional and spiritual provisions, we were finally called parents. Because yes…

For nothing will be impossible with God. 

Why am I sharing this?

I want to reach out to all couples who have loved their babies but lost them. It doesn’t matter if he/she stayed with you for weeks, or months, or years. The pain will always be the same. However, know that despite all these sorrow, hopelessness, despair and anger that you may be feeling right now, THERE IS HOPE. And only time will reveal how grand His plan was all along. He will give you your heart’s desires, IN HIS TIME.

Our two Bastis in heaven is a reminder to never lose faith. 

To never give up on hope.

Our losses have defined me as a mother: a mother who is overflowing with gratitude every time she looks at her son at night, knowing that he is the impossible made possible. He is the sibling his brothers in heaven, my two little sweet Bastis, prayed for.

And to you, my little angels, I will always love you. You will always have a space in my heart that no one will ever occupy. I love you both and you will always be remembered. 

Pregnancy and Infant Loss

Seven Times God Made Me Kneel – My Book in the Making

I have another confession to make – I have been wanting to write a book. 

This started when I gave birth to Santi.

There was a voice that always woke me up in the middle of the night, telling me to proclaim my testimony for all the blessings I have received.

But writing this book has been a struggle. I have started but I couldn’t, for the life of me, just complete it. I have the outline of the book. I know how it pans out. But the words just don’t flow.

This was in 2016.

Then January 2017 came and I was again confronted with a life-changing experience that rocked me to my core.

There I was, with an 8-month old son, the child we have prayed for and waited for four years and after two miscarriages, and I was on the verge of almost losing his father in a major open-heart surgery (this is another long story I am yet to write) –

My world collapsed but my God did not disappoint.

He gave Edzel gastroenteritis so I could bring him to the hospital. And what a blessing in disguise it really was! Had it been one week after, Edzel could have died of heart failure.

And so, there I was again, confronted with that incessant feeling to write the pages of that book again. And this is how it starts…

I am not a religious person. The truth is, I was agnostic for most part of my adult life. I was a perfect example of God’s prodigal daughter.

I started as any child in a Catholic household would start his faith. I prayed the Rosary every six in the evening with my Papa. I attended Catechism classes and participated in Flores de Mayo every summer. I was an angel every Holy Week during the Salubong.

I went to a Catholic school in my secondary years and joined practically every church activity, from being a lector to a commentator to being a member of our Church choir. During our music class, I even proudly sang the song, “Jesus, My Friend” when all of the other performers rocked the class with their pop ensemble. It was embarrassing, but hey, anything for Him, right?

But my faith was devoured when I stepped on my third year in high school in a debate class.

I was tasked to take a stance against celibacy and Catholicism. To arm myself with a solid defense, I had to read every book that contradicted my Catholic faith. It questioned the foundations I believed in and rocked me to my spiritual core. I read about the attacks against Mary and the saints, of the Catholic dogmas and all the religious traditions. I cannot remember if I won the debate. All I know is that, I have gone astray after that class.

From that point in my life, I was wishy-washy with what I believed in.

I knew that there was a Higher Being. I just did not know how to connect with Him anymore. I was fourteen and my faith was shattered for decades after that. It did not help that I spent most of my adult life with people who are also far from being spiritual. I was a lost earthly soul, enjoying my vices and getting satisfaction from worldly things.

But God had other plans for me and this is what I want to share in this book.

He has manifested Himself in such a powerful way that my life has turned around completely. I am sharing with you seven moments in my life that I had a powerful encounter with God and how this has changed my life forever. Because of these experiences, I have come full circle and went back to my faith – even much stronger than how it was founded.

I hope that I can look at you straight in the eye and tell you a reason why I am writing this book. I hope I can give you an answer that will move you to tears.

I can’t.

Because I don’t have an answer.

All I know is that there is a voice that has been waking me up in the middle of the night since my little miracle, Santiago, was born. To do what I had promised to do – proclaim the grace that He has given my family and be a testament that He exists and that He is real.

I am writing my story because this is the ministry that I am most familiar with. I am writing my story because this is the only way that I can give back a little of the immense blessing that He has given our household over the years.

To God be the glory.

I wish I could finish this book by next year. For now, God is still revealing another great miracle as of this moment (watch out for this soon). 

In the meantime, I hope you could give me some feedback on my draft prologue of this project. 

Toodles, loves!

Free! Roller Bottle Label Designs

Hey you! Are you an EO addict lover like I am? If you are, you may have been looking for some roller bottle labels for your blends.

Well, #oilbularyo, you are in for a treat! I was feeling a little creative and made these 10mL roller bottle label designs over the weekend. Download them for free and print away!

Instructions on how to print these roller bottle labels:

  1. Download and open the file in Adobe PDF Reader.
  2. Go to Edit and click on ‘Take a Snapshot’.
  3. Click on the label that you want to print. It will automatically copy the label to your clipboard. Make sure that you can see the full label in the screen or else, it will be cut.
  4. Paste on a Word file.
  5. Right-click and look for ‘Format Picture’.
  6. Make sure that height is at 2.5 inches and width is at 2 inches.
  7. Lay it out.
  8. Print. Easy breezy! I print it on a sticker paper then just do the cutting afterwards. Some layer a clear Scotch tape on top of the sticker paper before they cut for added protection on the label. I am lazy (and impatient) to do this so I skip this step! Haha!

    To download the high-res file without crop marks, click here>>

    To download the high-res file with crop marks, click here>>

    To download a ready printable file of all the designs, click here>>

    So there you go, hope you enjoy these little labels I made. Will be designing some more labels soon so do subscribe to the blog so you can get hold of them! 🙂

    To subscribe, click here>>

    Why I dove into this essential oil craze

    If you have been following my social media accounts, you would notice that I have been posting a lot about essential oils (or EOs) lately. It has been more than just two months when I started with my Young Living starter kit and for now, I see no sign of me stopping just yet.

    Embarking on a new project towards better health and wellness for my family. 🍃🌱 #essentialoils #soontobeoilymama #oilingsoon Thank you, @kitingskee 💚

    A post shared by Ernalou Del Rosario (@balotdelrosario) on

    It took me a long time before I decided to take the plunge because it is really an investment (read: not cheap).

    But what finally convinced me to go into EOs? Here are my reasons:

    1. There were too many testimonials that these little wonders work. Too many for the claims to be fake.

    I came across several moms recommending EOs in one popular mommy group in Facebook for the overall health and wellness of their families. While there are no approved therapeutic claims, many moms swear by it. My sister-in-law in Australia (where all the health revolution seems to be coming from) is also using a local EO brand for her family’s different health concerns. In my case, I was looking for an alternative natural solution for the mister’s snoring, LOL (find out more about that here>>)

    2. There are too many interesting things you can do with oils, not just diffuse it.

    I purchased Valerie Ann Worwood’s The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy from Fully Booked Online>> and I was amazed by the endless recipes you can do with EOs. Imagine a more natural home with DIY face serums, bug sprays, toy cleaners… The possibilities are endless!!! It is refreshing to think that you can cut down on your family’s exposure to chemicals by making your own household staples and knowing exactly what are in those items.

    The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy

    3. It would still come out cheaper in the long run.

    Based on my computation, using oils to promote overall health and wellness for my family was still more affordable and sulit than racking up bills on medication. As they say, prevention is always better than cure.

    4. I wanted a healthier lifestyle.

    Ok, this may be not for me (I am a huge Mcdo lover) but I wanted something better for Santi — for him to be less exposed to chemicals and have access to a more natural way of life. I hope that I can inject this mentality to the other areas of our lives as well.

    5. My pedia and OB gave me a go signal!

    This was a huuuge factor for me! Even my pedia is a YL user as well!

     

    So there you go, loves! If you are pondering if EOs would be beneficial for you and your family, message me so I can give you several resources that may help you 🙂 Toodles! x

    Disclaimer: As of November 2018, I am not officially a YL distributor. If you want to purchase YL products, let me know so I can hook you up. I will be posting more about this soon. Thanks, guys!