Crocheting The Joyful Mysteries

A fluffy depiction of the Joyful Mysteries of the Holy Rosary! 😀

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The Annunciation- The First Joyful Mystery

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said: “Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women”. And when she saw Him, she was troubled at His saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.And the angel said unto her:” Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call His name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest”… And Mary said:” Behold the handmaid of the Lord…

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Things I Realized This Christmas (2017)

After a recent period of time, a period of time which also includes reflecting on the birth of Jesus Christ multiple times in the Rosary, I have come to a bunch of realizations about this season where those Joyful Mysteries should get more focused on by our spiritual magnifying glasses and such:

About Santa Claus:
I owe a lot to those grumpy nuts who like to claim that Santa Claus isn’t real, because Santa Claus isn’t the center of this religious holiday, this holiday which a lot of us these days don’t like to call religious…and heh, we also claim to fight for religious freedom with that sort of attitude!

About dreaming of a “White Christmas”:
And since Christmas isn’t about that magically sledding psychic old man and his buff reindeer and skittering elves and pocket-dimensioned gift boxes going down snow-battling chimneys, this Filipino doesn’t need to worry about not having snow in his tropical archipelago of a country! The seasonal cold breezes are still likable, though… ^_^

About holiday decorating:
I should remember to keep my future Christmas decorating simple and religious, alright…I can sense incoming headaches and explosions from all those balls and stars and spikes…Wait, maybe I should maintain the parol habit for some Filipino flavor…and maybe I should make something more fun out of it for better Filipino flavor…

About gifts:
My presence made someone’s Christmas and year-end so much, so much that I don’t feel much of the need to worry about buying presents beyond proper spending power. Giving seasonal presents still can work as nice supplements to personality development, alright…and sure, I’ll still take all the money you’d like to give me, my dear family and relatives. And, uh, to my ninongs and ninangs? Please don’t forget your main and spiritual job. Don’t worry, I know you can do it! I know one priestly ninong of mine who’s been doing a great job, see! 🙂

About romance:
My love life (yes, I’m talking about romance, but do remember that that’s not the only form of love) may have gone through some very interesting developments this season, but it’s not the main trigger of me feeling happy this season. Humbling myself for the sake of a healthy romantic relationship, though? Well, that’s a main trigger, alright~ 😀

About family, feasts, and vacation:
To chomp or not to chomp? That is the question. I’m in danger of chomping off all of this archipelago’s tables, which is obviously beyond my human carpenter capabilities. And resting is my current occupation, not for as long as I like, but for as long as I need. And hey, Jesus was raised by family here on earth, so I better not consider my own family insignificant, even when it’s not Christmas! But, uh…that’s easier said than done…Welp, shattering these glass barriers of mine will involve me feeling pain, alright…God Almighty help us some more…

About Christmas Specials in entertainment and all them commercial stuff:
I do enjoy Twice’s “Heart Shaker,” but if I were to make some Christmas Special sort of artwork and business, then I think it would be better for my soul to get you to reflect on your own soul and how it’s doing and all that. Higher chance of lower profit? Uh, we’re talking about spirituality here…and haven’t we been yelling about how we should become better people online and offline? That’s, like, better than profit, to the point that it’s essential. I know it’s hard to actually do it, fellow fool, so don’t worry, I got your back, and I’ll help you out there to the best of my abilities! \(^o^)

So yeah, aside from the usual request for honest constructive feedback, I wish you all a Merry Christmas, peeps! God Almighty keep on helping us all, too! \(^o^)/

Warning: trigger trap (or trickster trap)

Very heavy themes with very interesting presentation. Still a work in progress, too, which means that it’s something that I’ll be looking forward to more of! 😀

My Mind

I’m writing a sequence of – long and short – poems on issues of race including the (good, bad and ugly) of interactions of various ‘other’ demographics with Black people as I have experienced, observed, read or been told about during my North American residency. Sharing some verses from an early draft of something I have been writing today. Please don’t read on if you are easily set off by that kind of conversation.

smile-2072908_640You Black?

Dog is the new Black.

Dawg is the new Black.

Bitch is the new Black.

Gay is the new Black.

Jew is the new Black.

‘You-is’ the new Black.

Cop out is the new Black.

Irish, could be Spanish, is the new Black.

(You go TV channel surfing and protest you can’t find one,

Then by your side and in your bed you replace one.)

Blonde is the new Black.

(What d’ya say Beyonce.)

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Surprise! is My Consciousness of the World

Surprise! is my consciouness of the world
Why I am here, O God, please tell me clear
Out of a womb, I choke on apple seeds
Although the skin nearer to what Eve bit
And I should say that, perhaps, You are like
A question that begs us all with a fork
But that would prove that You are above us
For even the sarcastic professor
You draw bits from for our vaccination
So I wish to have Your Eyes, if allowed
Or at least, Your Hand that pulls us well
Despite contrary claims made by captains
Who rag up and tuck themselves to show down
Us fellow fools who believe in one God.

Knighthood in the Modern Age

Being a truly good knight is freaking tough, yo.

Medieval Otaku

My first question received under the “Ask Medieval” feature came from Gaharet and concerns how knighthood can be carried into the modern age.  To paraphrase, what are the essential features of knighthood and how might one be a modern knight?  The first quality of a knight is to be able to fight.  All other qualities of a knight surround the central fact of the knight being a warrior.  A knight may hesitate to strike a blow, but will not hit weakly when his hand is forced.  To that end in modern times, knowledge of how to shoot and martial arts are eminently desirable.  Next there comes keeping fit and healthy for action.  Thirdly, a knowledge of Historical European Martial Arts, though archaic, help in staying fit and better imagining what combat was like from a medieval knight’s perspective.

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The central virtue of the knight is courage.  The word…

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Fading into the Starry Background

The title of this piece isn’t really as severe as it sounds, but still, I have decided that this will be my last entry in the Beauty through the Ordinary series.

See, lately, I’ve had some particular changes and experiences in my social life. I won’t tell you every one of those, but the point there is that I’ve realized that I try to stand out too much.

And sure, being an artist means being under the spotlight, but reflecting on how I worry too much about what others think (and why I’m not getting much about what others think) along with getting insight from praying the Rosary about how to be properly ordinary by God’s standards, I’ve realized that maybe this sort of publicly posted reflection series would seem more like me just putting on a facade and being arrogant. That, and I think I’d be more interesting if I wrote about funny and/or wondrous events that happen to me every once in a while, as after all, that sort of stories, be they fictional or nonfictional, are the stories I’ve been living for ever since my childhood.

Hm, perhaps that’s what it means to be an artist, then? To show others the beauty and wonders of life? Perhaps that beautiful and wonderful quest is the ordinary of an artist, no?

Anyway, thinking about how I’ve been going along with this series before and how I’ve been going as Tobby online and all, I’ve also realized that I should focus more on the ordinary life I should live as a student, a brother, and a son. The time for me to be a professional artist will come, but for now, it won’t be healthy for me to try doing stunts with the arts without knowing where I’m jumping off from (and that’s something that all those academic paper requirements, among other things, are whapping my face back and forth about). And sure, I’m striking out on my own some more now, considering my boarding house stays, but I can and should be of more help when I’m at my family’s house, for what’s the point of dreaming to have a good family of my own if I don’t put effort into learning how to have such from my elders and my siblings? Like, really, I want my youngest brother to keep away from enjoying morally questionable things, but when there’s a chance for that, I’m just in my room, clattering my keyboard away…and also going through morally questionable things as well.

So yeah, this series shall come to an end with this entry. Don’t worry, though, since you’ll still find me making art, but again, I have to remind myself that stuff like this should be extracurricular for now. That, and I still have a lot to learn…God Almighty keep on helping us all, alright.

And with that, I’d like to remind you all again: Honest constructive feedback is highly encouraged and will be highly appreciated. ^_^

Why We Have a Large Family

If I hadn’t known about my dad, his siblings, and their parents, then I probably wouldn’t have even considered reading this in the first place. Such wonders, indeed. 😀

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Even though my large family has faced hard times and even suffered, I could not imagine life without every one of my kids in my life.

I did not plan on having a large family; I had never even held a baby before our firstborn. I had moved east with Michael after our first baby was born which cut me off from daily contact with friends and family.

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Although I enjoyed living in the country, raising our own vegetables and later even all our own meat, it was an isolated existence. I felt like Ruth in a foreign land but without family support because Michael’s mother was busy with a huge extended family. In addition, my husband struggled with depression. Worldly opinion screamed we should not have any more children.

The question we had struggled with for years was,“How could we remain faithful to Church teaching when Natural…

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Lola’s Additions

On another Monday, a usually no-class day in which I would be available to pick up my youngest brother from school some barangays across my family’s house in the morning while my mother was out doing consultancy work and such, I was sluggishly preparing myself for that aforementioned task yet again.

Sure, I can go say “Mondays are horrible and are the worst day of the week for every person ever,” but then again, I had been up way late the night before that Monday, also sluggishly processing how the rest of my life would go, all while the majority of my mind was preparing its amateur promotional activities for my comeback as Tobby Who Tries to Sing.

And hey, it should be noted that those activities, along with all my activities as Tobby, are currently extracurricular. Not like losing sleep as a professional would be healthy, though.

Anyway, with me building and wrapping that chain of sluggishness around myself in my complex relationship with idolization, that Monday morning then had me staring at the monitor of my computer and doing extracurricular activities some more for seemingly short but actually long periods of time. Prayer ended up feeling more like a useless thing to do, especially when I and my rushing habits wanted me to pray the Rosary right when the clock was ticking for me to get to my youngest brother’s school already.

So yes, resisting further indulgence in digging through the highlights of the historical-to-the-world yet extracurricular-in-my-schedule performance of the Bulletproof Boy Scouts in the American Music Awards during that Monday morning, I managed to get myself bathed and dressed up for the task I had to embark on, along with swallowing my bitter pride and deciding to just discreetly use my Rosary beads while on a jeepney ride that will certainly be taking more than fifteen minutes because of expected traffic.

But before that, my dear maternal grandma asked me to buy squash at the supermarket, squash to mix in with the pork to cook for the next mealtime.

Also, before that request, she asked me to buy Cornettos as snacks for when I and my youngest brother got home as well.

It should also be noted that my rushing habits combined with my chain of sluggishness still aren’t totally dead yet, so yes, the pile-up quickly had me groaning when Grandma asked me to buy squash.

She then took back that request for squash from the supermarket, just letting me remember as far as the Cornettos while I focused on the urgent task of picking up my youngest brother from school. She didn’t shout at me when she took it back, though. To be more specific, the speed of her speech went up when she did the takeback.

Once I went out of the house and walked and commuted my way to my youngest brother, though, I guess my focus on the task at hand upped my focus on other more important things…things like what I should be doing once I really go out and be a young professional and more in the future.

I do feel thankful for Grandma understanding that my head was feeling piled-up already back there before I left the house, but then I thought of the inevitability of dealing with people who would also deal important tasks for me to do but won’t be as lenient as Grandma usually was to me. She also didn’t know that I was like that because of my own actions as well, actions she’d certainly fuss over.

I want to be a good citizen, a good family member…but how can I do that if I don’t put effort into serving other people? How can I do that if I don’t put effort into making sure that I would be fit enough to serve other people?

And certainly, I would need to stop doing certain things I’ve been quite into. I’d certainly need to spend less time reading fanfiction. I’d certainly need to admit that uploading Tobby works online takes chunks of time that are bigger than I think. And I’d certainly need to admit that I’ve been slipping up with this, stuffing thoughts about this reflection series in between my thoughts about the task of picking up my youngest brother and other important tasks I also want to finish in a flash.

And so, because of all those struggles, because of all those chores and errands being pushed to me, the most convenient and the most proper option my elders could find at the moment…well, I think I should be thankful for all that, especially to God.

Still, I have a long way to go.

Case in point: Grandma still packs the clothes I bring to my boarding house.

So yeah, God Almighty keep on helping us all.

And to my dear Grandma, whom I usually call “Mama” (while I call my mother “Mom” or “Mommy”)…Thank you very much for the inspiration. 🙂