07 December 2008

Lovely Day

Today is a beautiful day. The weather is sunny, but it's not too hot. There's a cool breeze blowing steadily. Ironically, we didn't go out to bask in the sunshine or let Elhaym roll on the grass or something. The street right outside our house is not noisy like usual, there's a significant decrease in the passenger jeeps roaming it. Why? Because they're watching the Oscar De La Hoya vs. Manny Pacquiao fight, which I take no interest in. It just makes me a wee bit sad to know that De La Hoya lost, after all, he is good-looking.

I have the luxury of time to play with Elhaym, and to finish up on my post on:

My Adventures as a Mommy Bridesmaid

It was morning on the day before my friend’s wedding and I was busy packing Rix’s, Elhaym’s and my stuff, trying my best to fit all our clothes, shoes, toiletries, sterilizer, toys into as few luggage as possible. The wedding venue was far, so the soon-to-weds arranged for their families and us bridesmaids and them coordinators to stay at Parque Espaňa on Friday night. Bringing the baby on trips entails packing almost all her things in. I always speculate that she might need this and that if this and that should happen, there’s always extra clothing and lots of extra diapers. Rix was contemplating on bringing his camera, since we won’t be letting the yaya come with us (the overnight stay was not on our own expense so it wasn’t right to bring any more guests), he’d be the one staying with Elhaym when I’d be fulfilling my duty as a bridesmaid, which was to pose for the picture-taking. He he! But he brought it anyway, in case the mood or inspiration strikes him.

We wove our vehicle through the streets towards unfamiliar territory, as we don’t frequent Alabang, which was already far south. The next couple of hours were spent navigating, with the aid of a sketch in the invitation. We even dropped by my brother’s store to ask him where Alabang Town Center was. All the while, I was holding Elhaym or seating her beside me or she was standing on the backseat, looking out windows or tugging on Rix’s sleeve, expecting him to carry her and let her play with the stirring wheel. In short, she’s all over the car. The mommy bridesmaid was now also a mommy car seat for Elhaym. She doesn’t have a proper car seat, the one lent to us we needed to re-upholster.

At around 4 pm, we finally arrived at ATC. I proceeded to have my nails and toenails done at David’s Salon while Rix was strolling with Elhaym at the mall. He even bought a bean-stuffed toy dog for her. We first had dinner at Gloria Maris – a Chinese restaurant within the compound before heading for Parque Espaňa to check in. After much confusion about the rooms, we finally settled in a 3-bedroom unit with the coordinators, and 2 other bridesmaids who are also my close friends. It doesn’t take long for Elhaym to feel at home; soon, she was walking, even running around the kitchen, dining, and living areas picking up stuff and leaving them in other spaces, opening and sometimes closing drawers.

Elhaym wakes up at around 6 am, so when she was calling for our attention on Saturday morning, I had no choice but to drag myself up, despite having hit the sack late. We had plenty of time since the wedding was to start at 3:30 pm. The 3 of us had complimentary breakfast buffet at the restaurant on the 19th floor. The food was not bad. There were corned beef, scrambled eggs, strawberry & nutty chocolate muffins, cereals & milk, coffee, bread & jams, vegetable salad, cold cuts and fruits just to name some. There were even cheese slices, which Elhaym loved. After filling our tummies, we went back to our rooms to rest. I gave Elhaym milk and then I bathed her. I was in the shower when the make-up artist Chastine from Tony & Guy arrived. My friend Mary (she came from Taiwan just to attend this event) went first, I was next. Soon my transformation began. Well, it was not so drastic as he believed in enhancing a person’s facial features, not altering them; which was good. We were all prettier. Teehee!

Sometimes, after having hair and make-up done, I don’t want to move around much. But, being a mommy with a colored face is very different. I could not be as conscious as I tend to be because I needed to bend down and pick up Elhaym, carry her around, and feed her. My dress could be full of folds and creases, my one of my twin peaks could be hanging out and I wouldn’t really know.

Thank God it wasn’t raining or the sun wasn’t scorching, or else my curls would sag or I’d be sweating profusely. It was the perfect weather for an outdoor wedding ceremony at Fernbrook Gardens. God must love the soon-to-weds so. While Rix held Elhaym, I was walking with a bit of difficulty on the “red carpet” spread over uneven grass towards the front where we were to wait for Irish, the bride. Her carriage arrived and she descended from it like a fairytale princess. I took a look at Paulo the groom and he had on a very expectant countenance, with a shadow of a smile tugging at the corners of his mouth. I wonder what grooms were thinking when their brides were walking down the aisle. The ceremony was beautiful, especially the exchange of the vows, which the couple themselves composed. Tears were starting to well up in my eyes, I had to look up and blink them away.

Drinks and finger food were served before the reception began. Guests mingled at the covered plaza outside the dinner area. The air was cool and the atmosphere had a tinge of giddy delight at the celebration that was to commence. Now, it’s my turn to look after Elhaym as Rix was a bit tired. Appetizers were already served as my friends, my family and I settled onto one of the round tables near the front. The program included cutting of the wedding cake, sipping of wine, releasing of doves, singing of the popular group called MYMP, showing of an AVP of the couple’s pictures, a story of how they met and some messages from their family and friends, games for the single gals and guys, money dance by the newlyweds (the couple dances and guests pin money onto the bride’s gown and the groom’s suit, a Filipino tradition whose social significance I am not aware of). Simultaneously, dinner was being served. There were dishes of fish fillet, sizzling roasted beef, pork loin, and angel hair pasta with tomato sauce just to name a few. I think Elhaym was pooped as she slept halfway through the main course, but woke up before the whole affair ended. I had to change her into a T-shirt dress since the pink fairy dress that we picked for her made her neck area itchy and it was irritating her. I think she felt better after that.

The bride requested us, her friends to again stay at Parque Espaňa for another night so she could spend some time with us before they leave for Macau for their honeymoon the following day. And, also, she wished to chat with Mary before Mary goes back to Taiwan on Wednesday. Rix readily agreed to rent another room for the purpose of getting together (and since it was already late, it would be hard to drive home tired); our two guy friends Winch and Jack even stayed until midnight to talk about the wedding ceremony and the party. We also looked at some pictures they took and some videos they recorded on their laptop. Too bad the other two bridesmaids Meg and Chloe didn’t stay, we were not complete. From the animated way they discussed it, I think the newlyweds enjoyed their wedding, that’s what matters most. While we were talking in the living area about the wedding ceremony, the food and the guests, Elhaym was in the Master bedroom, on the bed surrounded by pillows, fast asleep.

When Winch and Jack left, Irish and Paulo also left for their room adjacent from ours. In times like these, a make-up remover would really come handy. Facial wash and water could not remove the eyeliner and mascara. I really haven’t thought of that. Good thing Mary has some; that stuff works like magic! I wonder where I could find good make-up remover… With that in mind, I drifted off to dreamland.

An abundant breakfast had been awaiting us again at the restaurant on the 19th floor. Irish and Paulo were also with us to enjoy it. And, again we rested after our gluttony moment. But then, time came for us to leave for home (we’ll be charged another day if we stayed longer). Mary stayed with Rix and me as our house guest since she made Taiwan her home already, years after she left the Philippines. Elhaym was also very welcoming; she shared some of her toys.

And that concluded my eventful weekend. It was tiring, but enjoyable. The fun doesn’t end there though, as Mary was still in the country until last Wednesday.

Here's a picture of my little fairy superstar.

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