our 2009 newsletter

For the sake of those who haven't received our newsletter, here's an online edition:

It’s that time of year again. And once more, we send this update to our closest, dearest relatives and friends. We send updates, whether you may be interested or completely apathetic, because we want you to know that you are in our thoughts, as we hope we are in yours.

This year can best be described through three key words: adventure, beginnings and talent.

Adventure: In February, we took our annual vacation with four of our closest friends, and went to Cagayan de Oro for some white-water rafting. All six of us have never rafted before, nor are we particularly into extreme sports. But we welcomed the thrill of danger, as the foolish young do, and took on the advanced rapids! Mere words could not describe the adrenalin, the rush of doing something that could bash your head against huge rocks, the pure, unadulterated joy of being irresponsible. Luckily, we made it out alive.

Beginnings: In June, Toni went to Manila to prepare and take the Architecture Board Exams. Angelo went with him, but immediately set out for Pangasinan with Toni’s sister Wanda, and stayed there without his parents for a whole week. I (Alli) caught up with them then, and brought Angelo home, while Toni stayed on. Unfortunately, because of some technicalities, Toni was not able to take the Board Exams. Well, there’s always next year! Also in June, I transferred to AT&T Operations, still in the same company, Sykes, as Communications Trainer. Night shift, more work, same pay. I have been busy with training, as well as monthly events in line with employee motivation and customer service excellence. Another thing that happened in June, aside from all the birthdays and everything else already mentioned, was Angelo starting Nursery school. He goes to Marie Ernestine, just a short walk from the guardhouse, and he comes home every day with stories about his classmates and Zyra, “she’s my best friend because I love her.”

Talent: In October, Toni started working on his “secret project.” He had a vision, and he made it materialize in the form of a transformation. Angelo transformed into Bumblebee. No, not the bug. The Transformer! Toni slaved away until the wee hours of the morning for the whole month of October, to get Angelo’s Halloween costume ready. Needless to say, it was a ginormous hit! He won Best Superhero Costume in SM Mall. Angelo also joined the village’s annual Halloween party for kids, and we went trick or treating along the main road.

While Toni’s talent is overflowing, mine is practically nonexistent. At around the end of October, Angelo’s school was celebrating United Nations Week. One of the activities was to bring a flag to school, and I took it upon myself to make it. No, not that of Japan, but nothing as difficult as Saudi Arabia’s. To cut the long story short… Toni ended up making the flag. I couldn’t make the corners meet! A back-to-back flag is hard work. Angelo is pretty talented himself. The U.N. Week culmination was a dance presentation in Ayala Mall. Angelo’s class went up on the stage and danced an upbeat Hawaiian song. Angelo was very natural onstage, and he got the steps almost perfectly. You don’t believe me? Check out his dance video, and many other vids, which we posted in our YouTube site: http://www.youtube.com/allitoni

We have a lot to be thankful for this year...
This holiday season, we are most thankful for our family and friends,
who are our strength and our inspiration.

Thank you for the love and Happy Holidays to you and your family!

final dose:
may the year 2010 be more meaningful and prosperous to one and all!
happy new year!


posted by A.Cortes on 9:27 pm under


links to this dose

the year in photos

final dose:

looking forward to a fun and photo-filled 2010


it's the time of year

When the parties just keep on coming, you just have to squeeze in everything into a busy December schedule. Not that we're complaining. But when everything is over, it leaves you very little time to do the necessary holiday errands.

By now, almost everyone should be done with the buying and wrapping of gifts, putting them under the tree... but not us. Because we have been so occupied lately, we haven't found enough time to buy presents for the people included in our Christmas list. And here we are again -- off on another holiday rush.

Zai Angelo ponders on what he wishes to receive for Christmas

Don't we just wish we were kids, when all we care about is the time to tear the fancy colored Christmas wrappers.

We have just started giving our annual newsletter and just like the previous year we are sending our Christmas cards out late again. Our close relatives and friends whom we are mailing the cards to may get it in January 2010. Our apologies in advance.

final dose:
the Corteses
wishes everyone happy holidays!


in each other's company

When it felt like we had too much to worry, a call for a vacation was necessary.

So we did just that, right before the last month of the year started, and right before we get to be busy with all the holiday parties, even before we will try to fulfill the Christmas wish lists and everything that comes with the hectic December schedule.

The long weekend presented the right moment.

With free airfare vouchers, free two nights and three days stay at a beach front hotel; spending much was the least of our concerns. The trip to Boracay in November just had to be made. It was what we needed, or say more of wanted - the time to relax and enjoy.

Zai & Alli, run in the white sand; Zai Angelo having fun in the beach; Toni & Zai bonds under the sun

For three days, it was all just frolicking in the white sand, dipping in the refreshing beach, seeing the lovely sunsets and the best thing about it aside from it was free, we were in each other’s company - our first family trip to the famed Boracay beach.

the Corteses @ Boracay island

View more pictures here

Final dose:
A good vacation with the family is one for keeps