Category Archives: Family

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A Movie a Day for Summer

Confession: I am on a boredom-busting mission this summer.

It’s the first time that we are summering in our own home, which means that the task of keeping Little MrC busy and happy all day falls entirely on my shoulders. We are on day three today, and it’s been good so far. 

I have an entire list of things planned for the summer, including picnics and building our garden. Yesssss, lots of outdoor stuff! Even as my son grows older, I still want to make sure that his gadget time is regulated. I’m already having a tough time as it is, now that he has his own phone. Things will get harder once they shift from books to iPads in school. So, gadget-free activities are super musts for us this vacation time.

I feel like, in order to keep boredom at bay, I need to be able to establish a nice daily routine for us, then sprinkle in fun activities to keep things fresh. I got lucky this week as far as fun goes. On the last day of school, my friend Mish had us over for snacks and some play time for the kids. We left early, though, but the kiddo still had fun.


How aliw is this little popcorn machine??? ?

A video posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on


Then there’s routine. This will be the real challenge. I’ve said it before, I’m not good with routines, even for myself. But it must be done!

I’ve decided to anchor our daily schedule on meals, just because those are constant, must-haves during the day. Makes sense, right? Then, we will do different things in the afternoon. So far, we’ve gone to the mall, the supermarket, and my mom’s house. I think it’s a good idea to keep our afternoon schedules free so we can randomly choose to stay at home and lounge, or hang out somewhere.

alabang country club
Since it’s summer, there will be swimming!


It’s our morning schedule that I’ve focused on this first week because I believe that a good start will dictate the rest of the day. The kid and I start with breakfast, and see MrC of. After this, we each get our quiet time. He either plays recorder, chats with his friends on Viber, or plays games on his phone. I’ve been using my quiet time to write (like right now!)

After quiet time comes the highlight of our mornings, movie time. A movie a day – That’s my big plan for summer mornings. We like slow mornings around here, which is why I picked an activity that doesn’t require us to move around. Or shower beforehand. Lol.

Movie time also buys me extra time, truth be told. The kid is quiet and occupied, so I can crochet or write my grocery and to-do lists while we watch.


#threadcraftthursday #notagoodcameraangle

A video posted by Crochet by MrsC (@crochetbymrsc) on


I’ve been excitedly doing my research for movie time. I got to see a lot of great films growing up, and I can’t wait for my son to see them, too. I’ve also asked him to come up with a list of films that he wants to watch. Our must-see list includes:

  • The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – Can you believe I have not seen this???
  • The Sword in the Stone – A childhood favorite
  • Matilda – MrC’s special request hahaha
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox
  • Where the Wild Things Are
  • Little Women – Just because this is one of my favorite stories of all time
  • All of the Harry Potter movies – So perfect coz the kiddo is reading the books now!
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – We’ve already seen this, but I truly could watch it over and over and over again, forever
  • Enchanted – Because McDreamy
  • The Princess Bride 
  • School of Rock – For my little music lover
  • The Labyrinth – I tried to make him watch this a couple of years ago, and he got scared lol. Take 2!
  • An American Tale
  • E.T.
  • The Goonies – Another one requested by MrC
  • The Land Before Time 
  • My Neighbor Totoro
  • The Iron Giant
  • Hugo

I’ll be constantly updating this post with a list of the movies that we’ve been able to watch, just in case any of you choose to do movie time/day/night, too. Quick note: Little MrC is 10 years old, so most of these are movies for bigger kids. At times, though, we will pick films for younger audiences just because. Ok, fine, it’s because I like them. Lol.

Here’s our summer 2016 movie list:

  1. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip (Rated PG, suitable for kids 6+)
  2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Rated PG, suitable for kids 7+)
  3. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (Rated PG, suitable for kids 10+)
  4. Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice (Rated PG-13, suitable for kids 13+)
  5. Inside Out (Rated PG, suitable for kids 6+)
  6. Capture the Flag (Rated PG)
  7. Flushed Away (Rated PG, suitable for kids 5+)
  8. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rated PG, suitable for kids 8+)
  9. Big (Rated PG, suitable for kids 13+)
  10. The Neverending Story (Rated PG, suitable for kids 8+)

On weekends, I hope that the boys and I can go out to catch new movies, too. This weekend, I know we are watching Batman vs Superman for sure. Can’t wait!

Can you guys suggest any good movies for us to add to our list?


One Less Roommate

About a month ago, Little MrC decided that it was time for him to start sleeping in his own room. It’s funny how it happened, suddenly and completely out of the blue. 

When we first moved here, I was sort of forcing the idea on him, telling him that if he didn’t use his room I’d turn it into my office. He resisted. He wanted to stay in our room. I understood. We all lived in the same room for 9 whole years. Why did moving houses have to change that, right?

In our old room at the old house. He always slept so soundly, right next to MrC and me.


At the time, I was thinking along the lines of finally having more space and some privacy. But I didn’t argue with what the kiddo wanted. Instead, I agreed to have his mattress set up on the floor next to my side of the bed. Every once in a while I’d ask if he was ready to move into his room, and he’d always say no.

Then one day, I found the boys cleaning up that room across the hall. A few days later, the mattress was off my floor, and on the bed frame where it really belonged. And just like that, I was left with one less roommate.

Oops! Someone forgot to make his bed this morning. And yes, his sheets are mismatched. That red pillowcase is from an old Aladdin set, and the blanket is Pocahontas, all from my childhood.


Since he decided to start sleeping on his own, Little MrC has spent less and less time in our room. He only comes there now to watch TV. He has his own airconditioner, so when days are too warm he asks my permission to use it.

He has a desk, which he uses when he wants to write or draw. His dad’s laptop is parked on that desk so he has something to use for research, and (occasionally) for games. He hangs out in his own space to read and play, and to do little boy things, whatever they may be. I’m not sure that I really want to know.

The desk where I learned to write. It’s just as messy now with it’s new owner as it was back then.


Little MrC loves his room. On the way home from school yesterday, he said he couldn’t wait to spend time in his favorite place on Earth. I told him that I was so happy to hear that. I never had a room of my own, so I’m super glad that this is something that his dad and I have been able to give him. 

So much has changed for us since we moved houses. As the months go by, it’s becoming more glaringly obvious that my little boy is now a big boy. I’ve officially entered into the realm of tween parenting, and I’m completely terrified and a little bit sad. I don’t know what to expect. I’m afraid to make a mistake. And I miss having a baby around.

At the same time, it’s such a relief that I now have someone I can count on to open the gate for me when we drive home, so I no longer need to get out of the car and do it myself. I can count on him to lock the front door when we leave, and he can open it for me when we get back to the house. He pushes my grocery cart and checks items off of my list.

Favorite books all in a row, guarded by his daddy’s old barrel man.


He does most things by himself now, including homework. His independence means more free time for me, and that MrC and I can now watch movies in our room at night. It also means that I live in fear that this kiddo will grow up too soon, and will someday stop needing me. Or at least think that he no longer needs me. Of course, I know that he’ll come running back eventually (right, mom and dad?) but still…

Ah motherhood, what a huge emotional rollercoaster you are! I never thought it would be this crazy. But it really is worth it, cliche as it may be.

Once upon a time, when we were both a little bit younger. Man, time really does fly by so quickly.


So now, what do I do with all the extra space I now have in my room? Maybe a nice couch? A reading nook? What do you guys think? 

And can someone please guide me through this tween parenting thing? Everything here is so new! And so emo! I need all the help I can get. And maybe an extra glass of wine. 


On Frogs and Other Fears

Fact: I am a worrywart and a scaredy-cat.

A lot of things freak me out. I’m easily startled by strange noises and sudden movements. I jump like a cat when someone sneaks up on me. I worry all the time about a lot of things, and I’m a worst-case scenario thinker.

You’d never think this about me because I’m generally a cheerful person, but it’s true. I spend 50% of my day lost inside my own head. If it sounds like I’m kinda crazy, that’s okay. I think the best people are all a little bit nutty anyway.

No, this doesn’t look like a worrywart’s face.


My greatest physical fear is most definitely frogs, and I’ve said this several times before (like here, here and here.) I’m also scared of the idea of ghosts and I never want to see, feel, hear or smell one, ever. Same goes for demons, and stuff or people possessed by them.

Just as I typed that, my mom’s phone rang and I literally jumped. See what I mean? I really am a scaredy cat. It doesn’t help that her alert is The Count’s laugh with matching thunder in the background. 

More than these seemingly silly fears, I also worry about bigger, more serious, meaning of life things. I worry about MrC during his daily commute to and from the office.

I think about Little MrC while he’s in school, whether or not he had enough time to finish his lunch, and if his immune system is strong enough to battle the germs and viruses that live on campus.

I can’t help but worry about this little big boy whenever we aren’t together.


I think about myself and my own health, wonder if I am getting enough sleep, and scold myself over my lack of daily exercise. I worry about oncoming and overtaking cars while driving. I am scared that my gas oven might explode when I light it.

I guess it really is a mom’s nature to worry, and my own personal nature to have these fears.

Oh, I could go on and on with these things but I know that I shouldn’t. Worrying, fretting and fearing wastes a lot of time. At the same time, I know that every once in a while it’s important to think about them and acknowledge these fears.

I believe that, as long as they don’t paralyze you, fears will keep you on your toes, careful and cautious with every step. Then again, I could just be fooling myself. A result of watching too much Divergent. 

Photo from Pinterest
Photo from Pinterest.


I only hope that I don’t pass my own fears on to my son. There was a point where it looked like I would. I’d see him panic at the sight of lizards. I’d hear him run across the hall to our room at night because he didn’t want to be alone in the dark.

Then he did something that made me feel like he’ll be okay, and that I’m not such a bad role model after all.

The other night, it was rainy when we drove home after dinner. We all got out of the car and I went straight for the front door, which was locked.

I tried digging through my bag for my keys but MrC stopped me and walked quickly to the door to unlock it himself, which was unusual. The entire time, the kiddo quietly stood behind me, which was unusual. Of course I’m only realizing these strange things now!

The husbandry finally unlocked the door and I took a step towards it. Then of course a little frog just had to cross my path! It was really small, only about the size of my big toe, and dark. I thought it was a bug. Then I realized it was hopping and the freak out ensued.

It used to be my job to protect this little one from creepy crawlies, and now he’s the one who’s saving me. (Photo by my dad.)


When we were safely inside, the kiddo told me that he had seen the frog right away but chose not to say anything because he didn’t want me to get scared.

The following day, he checked around the car before I got out to make sure that Froggy Friend wasn’t back to get me. He unlocked the house for me, closed the gate, and brought his own stuff inside.

I went straight in because I could hear a chorus of frogs croaking all around us. Oh the joys of being surrounded by empty lots in the rain. 

All of a sudden my son is braver than I am. All of a sudden I see more of that big boy and less of the baby that used to live in his skin. I know that he has his own set of fears, too, but I see that he is learning to face them.

I suppose I should take a cue from my little one and learn to be braver in the face of all my fears, too. I guess it would do me good to lighten up and step outside of my head more often.

It’s times like these that make me think that I learn more from my son than he does from me. More than anything it makes me feel happy and proud to know that I’ve somehow done something right with that little guy.

Still, I dread the day when he will come home and say, “Mom, I need to bring a frog to school for Biology class.” Oh, kamote.

What are your worries and fears, and how do you handle them?


Learning about life from Loli and Mama

Loli and Mama were my grandmothers. Fact: It still makes me sad to refer to them in the past tense. It really does feel like something is missing in life when you lose any of your grandparents. At least for me. That’s because I grew up in a really close-knit family, and my grandparents were always a big part of my life.

We lost Loli, my paternal grandmother, in 2008. I lived with her for a few years while I was in college. My class schedule back then allowed me to come home from just in time for The Bold and the Beautiful.

My brother and I with Loli. This was taken in 1986, maybe?


Sitting with Loli to watch her favorite soap became my funny afternoon ritual, at least for a few months before things got really busy in school. I know she enjoyed having someone to watch with, and I just enjoyed sitting in her room and keeping her company.

Mama’s passing was recent. As in, not even a month ago, recent. We have always lived near her, but a few years ago she moved to a house that was even easier to get to from our place. This was also around the time I left my corporate job.

With my sister and Mama, New Year’s Eve 2012


After she and my grandfather (now, officially my last remaining grandparent) moved houses, the little boy and I started spending our birthdays with them. It was nothing fancy. We would just order food and have lunch with them, their treat of course! I’m glad that both the kiddo and I got the celebrate one more birthday each with Mama this year.

For my post on World Moms Blog this month, I wrote about my grandmothers and the life lessons that they taught me. It’s my way of remembering them, of paying tribute, and saying thank you to these two amazing women who have helped shape me.

I’d super love it if you can go check the post out here

What life lessons did you guys learn from your grandparents?