Sunday, November 2, 2008

Family Affair

* * W A R N I N G * *


We have been very busy for the past 3 weeks, so this is one major catch up
on everything that we've been up to.
My family was here for 2 weeks
for my Older Brother's Wedding so there was a lot going on.
And then my mother in law passed away,
so we travelled to Utah for her funeral. Here are
some of the highlights.

Early Christmas Shopping

My parents arrived 2 days earlier then
my younger sister her son and younger brother arrived after.
My Mom and Dad treated the boys numerous times
at Target and Toys R Us.
It was an early Christmas presents from Lolo and Lola (Gpa and Gma in Tagalog)
Shopped for them and gave them $.


Paul and I were so happy when BJ's opened closer to
where we live.
We don't have to go to Westwood or Long Beach to enjoy Pizzookie
and now it is just walking distance from us.
On my Birthday,I picked BJ's for my Birthday.
then we went to watch the Circus.
Paul was asked to participate in the Circus Act
And he did an awesome job!
The 3 boys
J.T , Jake and Lian-->nephew
gave me anything "twilight"
gift card, book, shirt and poster.
I told Paul, that I feel like I am 18 yrs old.
He said ..."More like 13! "
Also my co-workers were so nice and funny.
They gave me a yummy chocolate cake and
Balloons from "Edward Cullen" haahaa.


I have always been a secondary sponsor at a wedding.
This time I was one of the Bridesmaids.
During Wedding rehearsal, my sibs and I were just laughing
and joking around.
My younger brother especially, the Wedding Coordinator
even told him to be serious on the Wedding Day...Um...yes of course.

After the Wedding Rehearsal, we had
Despedida de Soltera
One of the loveliest Filipino marriage traditions is the despedida de soltera, farewell to the single life. It is the ritual show of the family's consent to the marriage and bestowal of its blessings, capping all the parties and showers honoring the bride-elect.
To the despidida de soltera are invited the family of the groom, close relatives and close friends of both the bride and the groom. Sometime before the wedding there must have been an occasion for the relatives from both sides to meet and to know one another, at least enough not to be total strangers at the wedding and at the reception. Both families might have already extended invitations to each other for this purpose. If there has been no previous opportunity, the despedida may serve as the formal introduction of the two families or clans to each other.

The next day we treated the Bride Denise
Denise for a
Bridal Shower "Spa Party"
Our favorite
other than the Spa and Massages?
quiet, peaceful,serene
and tranquil.

Then the Best Man and Groomsmen
went to Aquarium of the Pacific for
a fun day.

We all had a grand day.


I don't even know where to and how
to begin.

It was a Beautiful wedding.
It was very intimate and beautiful one.
They had 80 guests. We all had a great time.
We ate danced and had fun. Congratulations and we love you.
Here are some of the pictures. There are too many to post!


We went to our favorite and tradition Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms.
I've finally organized and invited my friends
and the kids and parents had a fun time.
We had a great turn out that
they will join us annually.
As usual we enjoyed the wagon ride,petting zoo
games there were tons of games which is new,
veggie picking, corn maze and piking the pumpkins

and the boys were tuckered out.

Quick trip to Utah

During the Wedding Ceremony, my SIL called and
and told us about my MIL.
Paul flew to UT on Sunday then the boys and I followed on

Going back to CALI...CALI... We're going back to CALI

When Filipinos go to America, they love to go to theme parks
WE LOVE TO SHOP. Ask a Filipino what they want to do as pasttime,
go to the mall and/or eat.
When we got back, we went shopping.
My fam already went to the outlets when we were in UT
and so we went shopping around
90210, L.A
Santa Monica.
We had to skip South Coast PLaza in O.C and
OR I WILL GO CRAZY!!!!!! :-)

No, I do not wear glasses. I was just trying my Mom's new "Sarah Palin's Kawasaki" glasses. It is very popular in the Philippines and she wants a piece of it.
When Sprinkles opened
my Sister happened to be here and she brought
a dozen back home to Manila.
Last time they had Sprinkles Cupcakes was last year
when we went home and I brought 2 dozen
Red Velvet Cupcakes.
It did survive the humidity.

When we got back from UT.
My nephew (Lian), got this poster for me. So cute.
On our way to Sprinkles, we drove past the L.A Temple.

My sister was so sweet and kind enough to watch the boys with her friend Liezel so Paul and I can go on a date. We enjoyed a nice dinner with my brothers and SIL--Denise.


We cannot decide where to go for theme park.
There were too many to choose from. So we asked
Lian where he wanted and because he loves
SpongeBob and Simpsons so much
we decided to go to Universal Studios.
We barely left our home and Jake wanted Red Velvet in the car. STINKER!

My sibs and I, SIL, and the boys went to Universal.
And Paul stayed home awaiting for a Family Conference with my parents at home.
We went a week before Halloween and
they have cool and scary stuff. Like
The earthquake was more intense at the tram ride, The Psycho Movie
Norman Bates carrying his Mom. FREAKY!!!

I was so excited to see that Desperate Housewives
were shooting at the Lot.

There was a stunt action as well, However
they did not reveal the title of the movie.

Of course. Wisteria Lane was blocked
and did not let us in.

And Norman Bates outside the Motel.

Going Back Home

The day before my family went back home we had a nice breakfast
at our favorite Pancake House in Redondo Beach
JT was the player of the game
and my sister entertained us with pogo stick.
Of course they had last minute shopping.
Also, travelling to and back from Phillipines and USA
there is a luggage limit of 50 lbs per luggage.

The weather so beautiful when they were here. It was hot and sunny. Believe it or not, the next day it was very FOGGY and and in the high 50's which is very cold for Filipinos.

Remembering my MIL

The night my family left, Paul and I started packing for our trip back to UT.
My MIL passed away on October 24th
from battling Stomach CA.
The viewing was last tuesday
and I was surprised to see how
many people came and showed their love and support
for her especially
my FIL (father in law)
and their 5 children.
The viewing was at 6-8pm and people started lining up at 530pm.
At 830 the line was still very long and the Mortuary
decided to close and locked the doors.
There was a Nurse who came to visit after her shift. And she stood at the
end of the line when she was told that the end of the line is in
the chapel. She did not know
it was that long.
My MIL's 9 sibs were there together with their
husbands and wives. The cousins and in laws.
And of course the Children.
Amazing Family that is all I can say.
Wednesday was the funeral service.
Ugh, I do not even want to talk about it. I cried
the whole time. I sobbed and bawled I mean.
from the Family prayer to all the talks and
It was very spiritual.
Thank you all for your prayers
and thoughts and love and support you've shown the
We love you all.

After the service, we went to Brenda and Troy's house (SIL and BIL. We had nice dinner, watched family videos and of course MOM'S video the my FIL made.
I wanted to share a poem that she wrote on her
trip in Kenya in 2007 for the Operation Smile
and was read by
Becky my SIL at the Funeral Service.


My feet carry me to some far away location
to visit points of interest or to take a short vacation.
But my heart goes home.

Many tasks and duties occupy my hands
I'm ready and prepared to meet each day's demands.
But my heart goes home.

I listen to the voices of loving folks around me.
Bells,bees,birds,babies create a charming symphony
But my heart hears home.

Beauties of creation I see about me everyday.
Flowers, sunshine, works of art, appear along the way.
But my heart sees home.

Of all the worldly treasures that a Child of God is given,
The precious gift of living in the atmosphere of Heaven,
is knowing such a Home.

Spectacular Views

It was cold in Utah and Idaho, but
that did not stop me from running.
Of course the cold and mountain thin
air and the spectacular views
slowed me down.

Saturdays is my long run and I did miss
running down the strand.

the Beautiful trees,
colors,falling leaves
crisp air in Utah

And the mountain
and river
in Idaho
really felt like I was just running down the beach.

The boys even made me a "runner's breakfast" at Gpa's Home

Of course there was a time where
I would stopped listening to my IPOD
and enjoyed the sound of nature.
No Smog, no loud noises precious!
Of course, my allergies kicked in
and the mountain cold thin air
made it worse
Believe it or not
I have perfected Snot Rockets. Well it had to go somewhere.

We always have a great time when we visit my SIL in Idaho.
The boys especially. They enjoyed playing with their older cousins
and of course the younger cousins.
They played and enjoyed the Huge frontyard and backyards in Idaho. Since
we do not have frontyards or backyards in CA.
The boys took advantage.
They also played Wii!
Aunt Brenda, can we play WEEEE?
Thanks Brenda.
My BIL Troy, was kind enough to take us around Idaho.
Such tourists in ID? Oh yeah. I was surpised.
And I loved it.
I went with Paul,
The fam's foster sister Laverta,
Amber- Alex's friend *wink..wink*
girlfriend ...shhhhh
Alex is on a Mish and he cannot have
a girlfriend.
My niece Toni and her husband Bob
and Bob's brother Brad.
Troy toured us around his company.
he owns a Gun Safe Co.
he took us around and showed us how it was made
and showed us his office.
I felt like he was Michael Scott
because the warehouse really looked like
the warehouse in the office.
Of course he is not as mean and bad as Micheale Scott
...WHO KNOWS....just kidding!
At the end of the tour. I asked him
since I do not own any guns
if he has a safe that has
multiple shelves
for my purses and shoes.
His response: HAHAHAHAH
I take that as a NO. =)

We Had a blast at Brenda's Fun House
the food, the company
we played games, scrabble of course
they are as competitive as always,
we played catchphrase and balder dash.
She made yummy caramel popcorn and
Troy's signature pop corn and pancakes
Laverta made yummy Navajoo
fry bread. YUM-OH!

We also dressed up for the cousins
Trick or Treat Carnival at school
As always I was the witch,
Tom-Duck,Bob-I really don't know,
Kyler-green M&M
Joe-Pumpkin, Robbie - Scary Monster
J.T cowboy and Brad-Cowboy
Brenda - Mrs. Santa Claus
We went to Hooper Spings and
the Man Made geyser.
On Friday morning
the younger cousins together with the boys
hung out with Grandpa before breakfast.
It was so nice to see them entertain and talk to

Tom also entertained us by playing the violin.

Dinosaur Park

We met Curtis, Jenn and their cute kids London, Sienna,
Jackson and Madison
at the Dinosaur park in Ogden,UT
Jake was Super-Ultra-Uber Excited!
He knew all the dinosaurs.
Mommy, it's A'Llosaurus. Umm OK.
Believe me, I can only name a few. Of course
The only thing I know thses Dinosaurs because
I've read it to them or Jake woudl tell me. The only
thing new to me was UTAHRAPTOR.
Interesting huh!

I love this Picture of the Dinosaur
and the Trees and the Mountain

Ok, This isn't the Meadow
And definitely not Edward!

Spook-tacular Halloween
The boys were so bummed when
they found out that they were going to
miss the Halloween at School.
But when we explained that why we were going to UT
they stopped sobbing.
Since I was the room Mom for JT's school
and volunteered to do something for jake's pre school
And both were going to be missed
BTW, we also had to cancel the
Halloween Party at home.
We packed the boys costumes, the candies, the games
some of the decors and plates to Utah.
JT was Indiana Jones and
Jake decided to wear his Dinosaur Costume AGAIN!
They went Trunk or Treating at my SIL's
Ward then went around the neighborhood.
The fun part were the games we played.
The younger kids had fun and the older cousins
were good sport as well.
We played: The candy corn game, Apple bobbing
Mummy game, Donut game and thimble game.


For our last day we went to Danielle's
Mom's Italian Restaurant in Ogden, UT
for Lunch.
JT played basketball with EJ, Jake played soccer with Matt
Then we went to Becky's Diner for dinner and smores.
We also enjoyed the rain when we went home.

Daylight Savings

Since we were in UT we were excited to get an
Extra hour of sleep today
technically we did not gain any because
of our body clocks (CA TIME)
Anyways, we still got to enjoy the rain
in UT when we left this morning.

The best time to fly is at 800 am Mountain Time

Welcome home CA!
It's raining! Yipee! I love the RAIN!

Now that we're back home,
of course vacation has come to an end.
For 3 weeks we did not cook at home. When my fam were here
we ate out for 2 weeks they were here
then we were in UT
we were fed again.
10 lbs later
We have to clean the house
We have to do dishes and do piles of laundry
ugh my favorite!
Go back to school to work
and ou course
go back to REALITY.

We did not have go to a lot of theme parks this time
nor we were planning on going to San Francisco,San Diego and Las Vegas.
spending time with my family
was Priceless!


Anne Marie said...

Wow, you have been busy! Thanks so much for posting the pictures of the funeral, and especially of the cemetary. I was sad that we couldn't travel to Bennington. I'm glad your stay with Brenda's family was fun. It's such a sad time, but having a great family sure helps. Your boys are so cute! It was good to see you at the funeral. Take care!

Joanne said...

I know. You're welcome. It was nice to see you too. Abby is so cute! We'll have to talk more next time. I was looking for you before we left for Bennington and spoke with Allison and Shayna..Did I get that right? Anyways, we'll have to talk more next time we see each other maybe reunion or just something.

Shelly said...

I am glad I was able to go to the viewing but wish I could have been there for the funeral. The Crane family is amazing. Everyone supports eachother and that is what family is all about. We will miss Aunt Karen but know we will see her again someday. Our prayers are with you all.

Tara said...

I love all the pictures. You look great in the wedding pictures! I know it was a sad occasion but it's still fun to see family. Hope you guys are getting back to normal.

Joanne said...

Thanks Shelly, It is always nice to see the fam. We'll have to go to the Fam reunion next yr.

Joanne said...

We are slowly getting back to Normal. Between the Daylights, homeworks,activities and clenaing up. We will get back by next yr. After all the Holidays. Yikes, Thanksgiving and Christmas is coming up.