the season in photos

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♪♫ There's a light that shines on everyone, Burning brighter everyday
For the souls who search for peace on earth.It's the Christmas Star that lights the way ♪♫ 

The Sunday before Christmas we had dinner at Maribago Bluewater Resort in Mactan. They had this fountain area filled with lighted white parols. It was so lovely, the boys just had to take a picture underneath the stars.

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♪♫ For every year the Christmas tree,Brings to us all both joy and glee.
Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree, Such pleasure do you bring me. ♪♫ 

Every after the Christmas Eve Mass or Misa de Aguinaldo, when the family arrives at home, we make it a point to have the yearly family portrait with the Christmas tree behind us. This has been the second Christmas with Tristan around; unlike last year, the second born now knows how to behave and pose during family picture taking.

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♪♫ It's the greatest time of year, and it's here, help me celebrate it.
With everybody here, friends so dear, let me simply state it.
Joy to the world and everyone, lift up your hearts and feel the love.
It's our favorite way, to spend the holiday. ♪♫

Christmas is always best spent with family. On the strike of twelve, when you are with loved ones - the noche buena is not just a sumptuous meal together, it's a joyous celebration of love and of life. Christmas day lunch has that same feeling too. It is really the season to be jolly.

final dose:
The Corteses wish you too had a wonderful Christmas.


newsletter 2013 ver.08

♪♫ Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let your heart be light 
From now on, our troubles will be out of sight 
Have yourself a merry little Christmas, make the Yule-tide gay, 
From now on, our troubles will be miles away. 
Here we are as in olden days, happy golden days of yore. 
Faithful friends who are dear to us, gather near to us once more. 
Through the years we all will be together, if the Fates allow 
Hang a shining star upon the highest bough. 
And have yourself A merry little Christmas now.♪♫ 

It's that time of year once again, and what a wonderful song this is!  It gives you that warm, fuzzy feeling - full of hope and promise, and above all, of love.  In case you were wondering how The Corteses fared this year, here are a few updates. 

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The Corteses' annual newsletter 2013, Ver.08

This is our annual newsletter, now on its 8th edition. We always have it posted on this site for the sake of those not included in our mailing list. And each year it has been a joy to put together what we want to share - the stories and the pictures. So for those who will be getting one, hope you'll love it.

final dose:
So have yourself a merry little Christmas now 
- love lots from The Corteses.


school affairs

My parents were not really that active with school affairs back when I was still in elementary and high school, much more in college. Basically, they would get to be in school only during getting of report cards, enrollment, recognition day and commencements. Rarely will they go to family days and other school affairs.

The moment our first born started schooling, Wifey and I have been pretty much involved – from the usual parents meeting to all school activities be big and small. At one point, one of us has been elected as one of the PTA officers. It’s not that we act like stage parents, but for the three schools that the first born has attended, he has always been actively involved with school activities.
From Marie Ernestine School, to USC North Campus and now at Sacred Heart School – Ateneo de Cebu; Zai Angelo has in one way or the other joined most school activities – be it as representative for his year level in the United Nation’s month to joining school quiz bees or as the Narrator for his school’s year end play.

As a parent, seeing all these gives you firsthand experience of how your child grows both in academics and the extra-curricular things. Believe me, any kid gets to be more proud of himself when he sees his parents watch him strut his stuff in school. So take my advice, get involved with your child’s learning process – take time to join school affairs even it would mean dragging yourself on a hot Sunday with a hang over after a Saturday night out.

 photo CHRISTMASAFFAIR_zps388d769e.jpg Ateneo de Cebu's 2013 Christmas Fair
the Corteses at SHS-AdC + Zai & Mom doing figurine painting + Zai & classmate playing with chicks.

final dose:
At the end of the day, the most overwhelming key to a child's success is the positive involvement of parents. – Jane D. Hull


a long december

A long December and there's reason to believe. Maybe this year will be better than the last

In a month's time, 2013 will end. I am usually not superstitious, but there's just something negative with the year having the 13 in it, that's why I so look forward to 2014.

The last quarter of this year have been depressing to say the least, just as it was the past two years; I dunno why tragic events occur when the year is about to end. But the month of December normally brings that glimmer of hope in everyone...  

And it's been a long December and there's reason to believe. Maybe this year will be better than the last. I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself. To hold on to these moments as they pass

December reminds us that it is not about everything turning out great for the year, but how we have made it through the year and the hope and the possibilities that lies ahead for the next. 

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images of the season. balls, tree, star.

So for those who felt this year was not any good, let's give this month one reason to believe. Keep the faith - in the premise that God gave everything in your life and never gives more than what you can bear.

final dose:
now that Advent is upon us, may the yuletide spirit be truly felt.