2 and double the birthdays

Keaton turned 2 recently! Though, I think he must think it’s his birthday every day, since for days past, we’ve been showering him with incessant birthday love — and happily so!

I’m so glad to say that after two years of pandemic stagnancy, we finally gathered with my brother and his family. Keaton has finally met his uncle, auntie, and two cousins. They, in turn, have finally been able to physically visit us and hug and hold our little man — all unmasked. I’ve been missing my brother and his family for so long, especially my nieces. It hurts to think that the last time the girls saw Keaton was the night that he’d arrived home from the hospital. Now, seeing how much they’ve grown makes me so proud of them. They’ve grown so beautifully, intelligently, and kindly.

When my parents (Kong-Ma) and Auntie Mel Mel, Keaton’s BFFs, arrived at our place, he was ecstatic. But when he saw my brother and his family, of course he cried. He didn’t know them. It was at once a funny, cute, and sad sight to see him crying when we all sang “Happy Birthday” to him. To him, there were strange faces cheering him on. We felt for him and all his fears and uncertainty. We felt for everyone at that moment, too. Two years is a lot of lost time. But it didn’t take long. Shortly after warming up, Keaton was already playing with his uncle on the floor with his gifted toolbox and trucks. He also developed a deep liking to his older cousin, who he proceeded to playing with all night.

Keaton loves trucks. He’s loved them his whole existence — he even knows the names of different types of vehicles and trucks — so for his second birthday, we decided on a truck/vehicle theme. My husband and I decorated the apartment with banners and balloons the night prior to the celebration, when Keaton was deep asleep. It brought back nostalgic memories of us decorating for his first birthday in our old apartment in Verdun, which I miss immensely. And now, our little dude’s already two.

I love the custom cake topper most of all. I had it customized and handmade by a talented Etsy seller, who breathes life and love into her creations. She brought my vision and all the details to life, and it turned out perfect. I’m so thankful for her effort and work. It’s become the centrepiece of Keaton’s birthday.

The cake was a lovely lemon raspberry flavour. It was light and fluffy, with a hint of citrus lemon and raspberry tartness that were beautifully enrobed with sweet buttercream. Heaven galore!

Keaton’s second cake, on his actual birthday. A fun funfetti vibe!

After we celebrated Keaton’s birthday with my family over the weekend — it was the ideal time for everyone to drive down, as the adults and kids were on break — of course we also celebrated his birthday on his actual birthday. This time, it was just our little family plus my parents, his Kong-Ma.

Keaton’s a lucky little guy. He got two birthday celebrations, two cakes, twice the gifts, and double the love and blessings! But it was just right and perfect. He’s so wonderful; he deserves all the love and more.

I’ve been anxious for a long time leading up to Keaton’s birthday. There had already been cancellations in the past due to the pandemic and restrictions, and each time, my heart broke. I crossed my fingers and toes that everything would be OK for our little guy’s birthday this time.

After two years, I’m so, so grateful that after all this time and uncertainty, it was a success story for everyone to finally meet. For my parents who are getting older by the day, I could understand and empathize with how joyous they must’ve felt to see all their kids and grandkids together, gathered under one roof for a full celebration of love. My family, my parents, my sister, my brother and his family — all of us together — I couldn’t ask for a more happy time in my life.


Happy Birthday to my sweet baby boy, who’s a source of happiness and refuge for so many of us. I love your sensitivity and compassion; I love that you’re a resilient problem-solver; I love that you possess a moral and ethical compass, and that you do right by others; and I love that now, we can reason and communicate with you. Your love for trucks and “meh meh” is the cutest thing of all. We’ll try to keep your long curly hair strand for as long as possible, OK? Don’t let daddy convince you otherwise. – Mommy

Hocus Pocus, Witches Brew


It’s almost here, but I just can’t wait for October! I look forward to leaves turning pretty shades of red, orange, and yellow; to cozy sweater weather, cuddles, and pumpkin spice lattes; to wearing my yellow Little Girl in the Prairie rain jacket; and best of all, to showing our baby boy the wonders of autumn. This year also marks our first autumn with our son, and I already find so much pleasure in seeing his curious eyes roaming about and soaking in the colourful trees.

Autumn is my favourite season. It’s idyllic and romantic, and it wisely reminds me of life’s innate cyclical nature — and the possibility for change and new beginnings. Otherwise, October really is a special month for my fiancé and I. It’s when we first met and started dating, when went to Spain together and he proposed, and when we’ll be getting married. Next month is when I’ll finally be marrying my sweet love and the father of my child, and when we’ll finally be Mr & Mrs. My heart is filled with glee.

It’s almost three years since Bruno and I met. October 2017 was a magical month that marked the start of our shared adventures. It was also a month filled with autumn walks, scones, baking, and Halloween treats and fun. One of our earliest memories together was packing Halloween candies in candy bags at his rustic kitchen table, and baking a pumpkin cream cheese bundt cake. I even forgot to add the flour before popping the cake in the oven.

“Doesn’t this go in the cake?” He pointed with utter confusion at the lonely and long-forgotten bowl of flour on the table.

“Oh, shit!” I exclaimed.

(Even the first dates revealed to us that we were the yin and yang to each other’s idiosyncrasies.)

We hurriedly pulled the cake from the oven and mixed the flour in. Of course, my cake didn’t come out with a velvety cream cheese layer in the middle, but at least the cake itself was cream cheese-y — and scrumptious. 


This was the cake that we’d baked together, and that he’d had the morning after, for breakfast. He sent me a photo of it, with a sweet thank you.

I quickly came to enjoy all our little interactions. At first glance, we were opposites. Bruno was outwardly, expressive, direct, and down-to-earth. On the other hand, I was introverted, reserved, and inwardly — and, as he puts it, ethereal and otherworldly in my manner of speaking. We seemingly sang two different tunes, but what we quickly realized was that our core was one and the same. Spending time together was easy, effortless, and comforting. Every moment with him was my happy place. And soon, it would become my forever happy place.

Who knew that shortly after our first encounters I’d return with my baking pans and officially move in with him? I didn’t. But life had plans for us for the long haul. And here we are, three years later, to be married, in the special month of October where it all began. It’s very exciting to finally be getting married; it feels like a breath of fresh air because we’ve already had to cancel our wedding in May due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And how heartwarming it is that our son will be there by our side on our wedding day — the symbol and fruit of our love and unity.

In many ways, this pandemic has robbed us of many pleasures and feelings of normality, especially following the birth of our son. It felt like life had conspired against us, mocking us in times of exuberant joy. Yet as adaptable individuals with an appreciation for imperfection, we also revel in the discomforts of life, which is why we decided to go ahead and get married next month, even if it meant not having our families and friends with us. We understood: the world is as such, we love each other and have our son to behold, and there’s no better moment of celebration and joy than now.



This snow globe was my first real one. It reminds me of Sabrina The Teenage Witch (1996 TV series), as well as Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018 TV series). I had watched the former during my childhood, and the latter was a series that Bruno and I had watched together at his father’s apartment in Madrid. This was a lovely memory, again taking place in October around Halloween time.

Mom- and wife-to-be ♥️

Hello, Friends,

It’s been over a year since I’ve last posted here — my soulful corner of the universe. Many sweet happenings have sparked into motion since then.

I wish I could carve out every detail of my memory in writing, and obsessively so, like a neurosurgeon carrying out his finely tuned daily surgical brain procedures with a scalpel fit for a competent touch. But because much time has passed, I’ll do time-sweet-time the honour of letting it just be, and simply scan the surface of my vague and pirouetting thoughts.

A memorable milestone was travelling with my boyfriend (now fiancé) to Spain in October 2018, to visit his family. It was a very emotional and revealing experience for me as an autonomous and growing entity, and for us together. My growth was vast, deep — and tall — like an olive branch steadily peeking its worldly head through dust and debris towards the all-knowing sky.

The good ol' butt poke (Valencia, Spain)

The good ol’ butt poke (Valencia, Spain)

And he proposed to me, at his aunt’s apartment in León where he’d spent a grand majority of his childhood. It was no perfect moment. It was in fact the most imperfect moment we’d experienced as a unit — comically clumsy, too, in retrospect. Yet it was a transient moment of our lives that was most true and raw — that revealed the promise of stars on a gloomy night — and that ultimately revealed the wisdom of profound strength and compassion, and the truth of our hearts. And I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

No two stories are ever alike. And when I ponder back at that point in time, I feel both tears and a smile overtaking me. This was our story. This was the story of how our yesterdays synchronistically carved the expansive path of today. And how thankful I am for the love of my life, and for us.

El Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain

El Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain

I loved walking hand-in-hand with my sweet love at the El Retiro Park in Madrid. The city was alive and bustling with social synergy, drinks and food, and everlasting life. But sometimes, a walk in the park was all it took to rejuvenate my tired spirit. Luckily for us, this park was only a walking distance from B’s parents’ home. It was filled with greenery, colourful leaves (we were reaching autumn at this time of year), and many cats!

El Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain

El Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain

Nighttime walk in Madrid

Nighttime walk in Madrid

View from a top part of El Corte Inglés, near Sol metro station (Madrid)

View from a top part of El Corte Inglés, near Sol metro station (Madrid)

La Plaza Mayor de León (León, Spain)

La Plaza Mayor de León (León, Spain)

León, SpainLeón, Spain

Toledo, Spain

Toledo, Spain

Lookout from Parador de Toledo

Lookout from Parador de Toledo

The Aqueduct of Segovia

The Aqueduct of Segovia

Segovia at night

Segovia at night

Our trip to Spain was almost one year ago, and I miss it and B’s family very much. Even if I’d like to return right now or travel and explore unlimited terrains like the freshly grated, citrus-y younger version of me, I can’t, and for good reason: I’m pregnant (and fainting has become my best friend), and we’re getting married next year. Yay!

I look back on my blog since the me who began blogging in December 2013, and I’m astonished and heart-warmed by how much has evolved in my life — from university-days-me to career-woman-and-soon-to-be-mom-and-wife-me. Somehow, and with a graceful touch of serendipity, it’s been my experience that the beautiful always nested itself in unexpected territory.

I indeed still dream of foreign heights and the homey and comforting feeling of transitioning in airports and “what next’s”. But more than ever, my mind and heart have cradled themselves in the joyful comfort of knowing that next year, I’ll be walking down the aisle on the way to marrying the father of my child and husband-to-be, with our little bundle of fluff alongside us.

My heart is elated.