When I was younger, my parents together with my 2 brothers would do the Visita Iglesia (visiting 7 churches) and do the Stations of the Cross. It was a good Lenten experience and a good bonding experience for the whole brood. My brothers and I of course looked forward to the lunch and snacks along the way. It was sort of a spiritual field trip that I have so much fond memories of.
Sometimes, we would head to the province of either my mom in Pampanga or my dad in Laguna and have a grand reunion “espesyal” with the entire clan in the ancestral house. We would play, exchange stories, scarily watch the penitents flagellate themselves and look forward to my lola’s (grandma’s) menudo for lunch and sopas for merienda.
Lull times would be spent watching the TV showing the Passion and Death of Christ.
Today with a family of my own, I don’t do the 7 churches anymore. My husband, kids and I just visit one church and do one round of the Stations of the Cross. We read through the Stations of the Cross leaflet, pray silently on the pews for a short while and then leave.
I’m not sure if that is enough observance of the Lenten season but for now it would do.
Last year, while doing the Stations of the Cross with the family, I told myself I’m going to write a Stations of the Cross for children. I would make it more real to them, more personal. As I was trying to write it, I got stuck in the middle because I realized what I was writing is another prayer again of myself/kids in relation to the sufferings of Jesus. And I told myself, “Why does it have to be about me/kids again?”
I came across this wonderful Stations of the Cross leaflet published by the Missionary of St. Paul in 1936 and newly designed in 1988 by Jennifer Gregory Miller from her website familyfeastanderia.wordpress.com.
The material paints the image of Jesus’ sufferings in words that are easy to understand for kids. The personal prayer is short and sweet and is focused on Jesus. Click this to download Jennifer’s printable version – Stations of the Cross for Children.
Have a Blessed Holy Week!
Woohooo! Mabuhay ka, Manny! Unanimous Decision. Score: 116-112 (x2), 118-110.
Since we are on the Manny streak, I had a close encounter with Manny a month back.
I was in the UNTV studio for TheGoMom’s first TV appearance. On my way up to the studio, I was speechless when I saw Manny Pacquiao!!! I stopped for awhile, unsure who it was and started screaming OMG, OMG, OMG! Hands shaking, heart palpitating, voice 10 decibels higher. I hugged him, made beso (kiss) and had my picture taken several times. When I recovered from my shock, I shook his hands and told him I’m a fan and how happy and proud all Filipinos are of him. I called my parents to check if they have time to come over to the studio to have the once in a lifetime chance to have their photo taken with the Pambansang Kamao. They were busy and couldn’t make it. When I got to the studio, I was still ecstatic and told everyone, “Go down, Manny Pacquiao is at the 2nd floor!” No one was as excited as me. I was thinking to myself, “Ano ba naman, walang respeto sa pambansang kamao!” And then one guest told me, “Relax, he is Manny Pangyaw. He is a TV host here at UNTV.” Huwhaaaaaat?!#@?! I don’t know whether to cry or laugh. I laughed.
Another side kwento on Manny, while watching the fight yesterday with my family and friends, a friend recounted a story of Manny’s remarkable kindness. LBC has been one of Manny Pacquiao’s sponsors. However, LBC doesn’t have the budget right now to sponsor Manny’s current fight so they said they cannot be a sponsor anymore. Manny apparently said, “Ay hindi pwede yan. Sinuportahan nyo ako sa umpisa, tatapusin natin ito magkasama.” (That can’t be. You supported me at the start, we will finish this together). Yesterday, the LBC logo was still on Manny’s shorts even without a sponsorship. Saludo kami sa iyong tapang, determination, galing at higit sa lahat sa iyong kabaitan!
Muli, mabuhay ka Manny!
Stated as one of a child’s rights is the right to play. And so we let them. But the dynamics of play in this wired world of ours gives us parents the responsibility to have a more active role in creating an environment for play. Dati, kapag sinabing summer, ahhh, patintero na yan, agawan base, taguan. In fact, “amoy araw” is coined for the generation of kids who basked and reveled in the warmth of the sun. Those were the days!
Today, with the unbearable heat and the addictive lure of electronic game pads, kids have simply, gasp!, forgotten how to play. I think it is a pity that play, one of the most natural things to do, has been stifled because of electronics.
My kids are a testament to that. When I remove electronics, I have to suggest activities on what they should do instead. In my neurotic, self-absorbed mind I think “problema ko pa ba yan?!?” And sadly, it is.
And so I embrace with my entire being the advocacy of Johnson’s Baby in encouraging active play among kids.
Last March 29, they strengthened their ties once again to the advocacy of play by launching yet another brilliant product for our kids (for me their no tears shampoo is a life saver!). This time they introduced Johnson’s Baby Active Fresh.
Di ba one of our concerns, OC moms that we are, is that they smell “amoy araw” after playing in the sun? Johnson’s Baby Active Fresh contains the first-ever sweat activated fragrance capsules that burst upon contact with sweat! Oh, ha revolutionary!
Habang mas pinapawisan, mas bumabango!
The launch is actually what got me into processing the active role I should take in creating an environment of play for my kids. Kuya Bodgie, of Batibot fame, interviewed child star Camille Pratts on her memories of childhood and she said her fondest memories are that of play. It is mine, too. And I’m determined for my kids to have that, too. And if they need me to be there for them to create that memory, I will try my best to give it to them.
Johnson’s got me started with my play agenda by opening its doors to the first ever Shadow Playground.
It is unique because it makes use of the sun to cast shadow games where children can play. And as the sun moves, the games change! My daughter and I braved the sun and gamely played all the courses. Yes, we were sweaty, but we smelled good. Yes, it was hot but we had fun!
The Johnson’s Baby Active Fresh Playground, designed for kids 3-7 years old and their parents, is located at the Market! Market! Playzone, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. It is open to the public within mall hours and will be there until end of April. Try it! Your kids will enjoy, and of course pag enjoy ang kids, enjoy din si mommy. Together, let us celebrate the amoy araw of yesterday and today!
Disclosure: Thanks to Johnson’s Baby Active Fresh for sponsoring this post. Thanks also for this wonderful play advocacy. For more play ideas with your kids, visit Johnson’s Baby FB page.