As usual, we decided to open the christmas gifts during the day when everyone would be available. It was decided that the evening of January 1 was the best time for this. So, even if this was my first day in my new residence, I made myself free. So with Fr. Lou, who was fortunate to have his masses all in the morning. After taking siesta to recover some lost strength (from the December grind of daily Masses/marriages/blessings), he arrived home shortly before six in the evening. It was only Dannie who was not around.
Ate Coring came with May, who gamely worked on the white hair on my head. When it was decided to ahve the exchange gifts, she called for Kuya Leo, who was so thin and haggard, who drove together with Ana Lea.
Ermie, who prepared the food, has only Eric who's not around.
El was there together with wife Cena and kids -- Camille and CJ. El was so profuse with his gratitude to God in seeing his family complete and his wife accepted by Inay.
Mayet and Didi were the usual gracious hosts to the exchange gift. It was around the Christmas tree in their house that we gathered in the evening, after supper.
Inay, the center of the event, was there ever radiant, wearing the earrings and necklace that Fr. Lou gave her for Christmas. Fe Aguila (whom we call chairman) was our special guest. Fe arrived shortly after lunch and exchanged stories with everyone, especially on her newly-married Kuya Ambo, who is also a family friend.
Inay gave her message and of course, I gave the more serious message. It is not only for Inay and her sons and daughters but I emphasized the "handling on a family tradition to the next generation", that exchange of gifts are really exchange of ourselves, a bonding in unity and love of brothers and sisters, of the members of God's family. It is the family that is the first church, the first temple of God.
We remember those who are not with us physically like Vince, Danny's son, who is in the United States with his mother.
After the exchanges of gifts, we departed: Ate Coring's family to their residence at Bukal, Manghinao; Fr. Lou to san isidro, Batangas City and myself to Lipa City. Fe rode with fr. Lou; while El's family I drove to their home at Balete, Batangas City.
That's how the Dolor Family started the New Year!
personal but honestly real. Open for comments, questions, suggestions on what you want to know, clarify or for me to dwell more deeply.
- ▼ 2008 (32)