Joy – A to Z challenge

A to Z challenge letter: J

Joy

I have talked about what ‘home’ is, what is inspirational, what is good about this life. Today, I want to remind you that you should find joy in the simplest things, and you should not feel guilty if you find joy during a grieving process. I have talked about the passing of my maternal grandparents, which was very hard for me because I grew up alongside them; they were my second parents. They taught me form a very young age that you should always find the positive in every negative moment in your life. Up until the day before my grandma passed away, I thought I was going to be fine. After she received her angel wings, I felt I was never going to be happy again. I tried so hard to keep busy (with college) and found fun things to do in order to distract myself, but I felt guilty every time I smiled. I thought I had to be depressed, I had to curl up in a ball and cry in a corner. The reason I felt happy was because I remember all the good memories I had with my grandma and everything she taught me. I honestly thought she was going to be upset from above (or wherever Heaven is) if I didn’t cry. What kind of a granddaughter would I be if I didn’t grieve the way I thought was the norm? Everybody grieves differently and I’ve learned that. Just because you smile doesn’t mean you are happy the person you loved passed away. On the contrary, it shows what a great legacy this person has left for you to continue, and how much inspiration this person brought you. Of course, there are always psychos out there who do smile because they’re happy they passed, but you never know what’s going on in other peoples’ lives. I miss my grandma, but I smile everytime I think about her. I still cry when I talk about her, because heck I miss her!!! But, it isn’t like before. It is true that it does get better, but you never fully heal from a loss. It is the JOY they brought you that helps you carry on. So, do not feel guilty, only YOU know why joy is in your life.

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

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Here comes the waterfalls

There was a question asked by another blogger, about whether or not I have any good memories. It triggered a memory of my grandparents during the Christmas holidays. My maternal grandparents were like second parents, I grew up alongside them. There is a lot to tell about my life with them, but I’ll share a few stories.

Whenever I went to my grandparents’ house, I was always willing to help. I remember accompanying my grandma to the nearby market to get fresh groceries. We would stop by the juice bar and drink healthy blends. That’s probably the reason why I love to drink natural juices :p. Everyone at the market knew her by name; she was their number one customer and was always greeted with kindness. Actions do speak louder than words, and witnessing the love others had for her, helped me shape into the person I am today. There is a reason why they were kind to her, and that was because she always showed respect for everyone, regardless of race and social class, she treated everyone the same. Otherwise, why were they so nice to her? They even gave her great deals. Her way of living taught me to treat everyone the way I want to be treated —of course, I learned this from my mum, as well, but I just want to focus on my grandma at the moment — with respect and kindness. Ever since, everywhere I go, I always greet with a smile and ask questions in a polite manner. What’s sad is that some people seem surprised by such actions. It’s as though good manners have gone straight to the depths of a sewer; is it that uncommon?

Her love made me want to love others, and it made me want to do something special for her. I did a lot of special things, but I remember one Christmas when my sister and I decided to pick our favourite stuffed animals, and gave it to them as Christmas presents. For a child to give away their favourite stuffed animals, is like me giving up Lord of the Rings right now (never going to happen). But, that’s who she was and that’s who I wanted to be.

It was in 2007 on my 20th birthday when I last spoke to her. Of course, I didn’t know at the time that it would be the last time. It felt like an ordinary day, we talked about life and she said her usual “beware of the wolves (bad guys)” and “always cherish your parents.” I didn’t notice at the time, but our good-bye before I hung up the phone was the longest we’ve ever shared. I kept repeating good-bye, good-bye, bye, love you, bye, good-bye, God Bless. I sounded like a broken record. Two days later, I came home to find out she had a stroke. I reacted the way anyone would, in disbelief. She sounded so coherent, like her usual self, was it a joke? I honestly thought it was a cruel joke, and I would’ve preferred it being a cruel joke than a reality. She was in the hospital with my grandpa by her side everyday (what a trooper). The doctors said she couldn’t hear anything anyone said, but when I called and spoke to her, my uncle told me she started to cry. To me, that meant the world. Why? Because I did not get a chance to say good-bye in person. I did not get a chance to give her a kiss in her forehead or squeeze her tight with a bear hug, just like I imagined. I was upset, I was terrified, I was in shocked. She passed away in the days after my last phone call.

The thing is, I understand why nothing worked out so that I would be able to say good-bye in person. I understood deep down that she wanted me to remember her in life, not the way she was leaving this world. I don’t have that memory in my head, of her in a hospital bed. I remember her joyful and Faithful soul, dancing through her apartment, laughing and enjoying life. That’s who she was, and that’s how her legacy continues.

She passed away on October 12th, 2007. My grandpa joined her on May 27th, 2013.

I will talk more about them, but I had to get this out of my chest. I was feeling a bit nostalgic. I miss them. I miss them a lot.

 

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

My very first 2 blog nominations!

The very awesome and kind Jenni has nominated for 2 blog awards. I am extremely humbled and grateful for these nominations, Jenni! She makes me laugh with her posts and is a very inspiring blogger. Pay her a visit, you won’t regret it :). Here are the two awards I’ve been nominated for:

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The One Lovely Blog Award by belsbror

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The Dragon Loyalty award by markbialczak

I’d like to thank Jenni, of course, and the creators of these awards :). It is my first time doing this, so I hope I wrote this post correctly :p. Before I post my nominees, I must provide 7 random facts about myself. Ready?

1) I cannot write without Enya’s music playing in the background.

2) I watch the movies Lord of the Rings, Titanic and Jurrasic Park at least once a month.

3) I cannot live without tea.

4) I came up with the name for my main character (in the book I’m writing) while in the bathroom.

5) I masterminded a plan to run from home and sort of succeeded at the age of 2 (mum caught me before I could cross the street! Poor mum!)

6) One night while babysitting, the family’s cat brought in a LIVE mouse. I had to chase the cat, then grabbed him and threw him (gently) outside. They still tell the story to everyone :p. It was a funny experience.

7) When I was younger, I wrote my diaries using a fantasy format. I did this in case anyone ever read them :p. So, a trip to the bakery would be disguised as a detective story.

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Now, onto the nominations! But before I write them, I’d also like to thank Robert Downey Jr and Leonardo DiCaprio for helping me…okay, fine, I’ll stop daydreaming :p

I would like to nominate the following blogs to the 2 awards. I wish I could nominate all, but can only do up to 10…so I’ll nominate 11 :p. I’m  going to play rule-breaker for today :p. These bloggers have been very kind to me!

http://theobviousandhidden.com/

http://dragoneystory.wordpress.com

http://ruthierufiebob.wordpress.com

http://teddylee01.wordpress.com

http://piglove.wordpress.com

http://mesayah.wordpress.com

http://wonderofmyworlds.wordpress.com

http://kelzbelzphotography.wordpress.com

http://seshatwuji.wordpress.com

http://illicitbynature.com/

http://forayintofoodstorage.com/

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

 

Daily Prompt: Green-eyed Lady

They ask: We all get jealous from time to time — what wakes the green-eyed monster for you?

Daily Prompt: Green-eyed lady

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Oh, heck! I think I’ve just felt the wrath of the green-eyed monster. It is a foggy and rainy day and yes, I’m jealous of whatever city has warm and sunny weather :p. In all seriousness, I think us humans will always feel jealousy, there is no way to change it 100%; however, it is definitely possible to control it and lessen the reasons why we become jealous. When I was younger —a long time ago. I’m 26 now — most of my classmates had plastic multifunction pencil cases, which were extremely popular then. I wanted one. How could I not have one and my friends could, right? I was determined to get it and tried to convince my mum to get me one. My mum, being the good parent that she is, explained how the pencil cases were not very convenient due to lack of space, but I didn’t want to listen. During our trip to purchase school supplies for the next school year, my mum found the multifunction pencil case, and before we purchased anything, she showed me the one she recommended (bigger and practical) and the one I wanted. Are you sure you prefer the plastic one? She asked, hoping to convince me not to get it. Yes! Please! Please! She asked me a few more times, but failed to change my mind. Well, she ended up buying it. You’d think that she was spoiling me, that she bought it to shut me up (I was a chatterbox so I wouldn’t blame her), but she was on a quest to teach me a lesson (I was old enough for it).

When we got home I opened it, but I didn’t transfer my supplies from my old pencil case. Instead, I wanted to flaunt it at school. I didn’t want to brag, I just wanted to let everyone know I had one, I was cool like them. Sure enough, my classmates loved my new pencil case and before class started, I decided to fill it with my pencils and erasers. You should have seen me, proudly grinning at the fact I got what everyone had. Then, it faded. Wait, how come nothing fits in here, I thought. I’ll make them fit. I know what I’m doing. How come nothing fits in this THING. Ugh.

At the end of the school day, my mum picked me up, and I exited the school doing the walk of shame. How was your day? She knew something happened by the look of my face. Ok, but the pencil case didn’t work. Can we exchange it for another one? I whispered. Same one? She asked. No, the one you showed me. She told me there was a chance they wouldn’t do the exchange, after all I really wanted the plastic pencil case. But, we returned to the store and my mum asked me to do the talking. Yea, hmm, I..I..want to exchange this? I asked. Want? Mum stared. May I exchange this? I asked again. Luckily, they let me do the exchange. As soon as I got home, I transferred all of my supplies to the new pencil case, and I was happy. My mum told me that there are times we want to do what other people do or what they have, but I shouldn’t strive to obtain things because I want them and to follow others. In addition, I should find what works for me and what I like. Sure, I liked the pencil case, but only because my peers had it, and it was not useful in any way. But, she reminded me that we all live differently and should be grateful for what I currently have. Also that we don’t know what life has given other people, and we don’t know why they have certain things or why they lack. She mentioned kids who don’t even get a chance to go to school,or even have the supplies to help them.

That does not mean I suddenly stopped being jealous and lived in everlasting perfection, but it stuck with me and I did learn a valuable lesson out of a pencil case situation. I don’t remember if it was that year or the years after, but during one Christmas I received two of the same toy, and I clearly remember as soon as I received them, I told my parents I wanted to donate one of them. A few days later, we paid a visit to some children and I gave them the toy. I helped them assemble it and they looked very happy. It felt so good to give back and I haven’t forgotten it to this day.

Of course, I still get jealous of certain things, I’m not perfect and I don’t expect to be. However, I have learned to control certain aspects of jealousy and whenever I get jealous, I tell myself the Blessings I have in my life at that very moment. Yes, it is hard, because you also look into the past and wonder what could’ve happened or what you could’ve had, but we must remember that those thoughts damage your soul. Everyone is different, and we must find the key that helps up bring ourselves back to our reality. As much as that reality may be grey, we still have a light inside all of us. Instead of looking backwards, look forward to the next day in your life, not in others’.

 

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

 

 

Random Photo of the Day #13…with a Story Starter…and Ellie’s daily update

Good evening (morning or afternoon) everyone! How was your Thursday? Only 1 day until the weekend! Even if you have to work on the weekend, just celebrate…no? no? Okay.

There isn’t much to update, except that I go back to work next week! So, I’m just enjoying the last few days. I’m staying up late —I always stay up late, but let’s pretend I don’t and make a big deal out of this — to watch Grey’s Anatomy at 12am. The reason why is because my sister lives on the other side of the country so she’s 3 hours behind me. We like to watch it at the same time :p. Tonight’s episode should be interesting, there’s a weird bug going around at Grey-Sloan memorial hospital! 

Today’s photo of the day is self-explanatory, when you look at it :p. Look at what I found! This photo is all about peace. We want peace and we want the world to be peaceful. Will it ever happen? Until then, think about things that make you feel peace. 

Enjoy the rest of your day/night :D! Ta ta for now!

Story Starter: They envisioned a plate full of hopes…

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❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

I have a thousand aunts

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A thousand is an exaggeration, but it feels that way, and it is an amazing thing. You see, these “thousand” aunts of whom I speak are not my biological aunts, but they are the fruit of an everlasting friendship that was formed during my mum’s school years. I’m not going to mention names nor ages, because what’s important is what their sentiments have shown me.

A lot of times we take our friendships for granted, and sometimes there are poisonous friendships worth abandoning. But what they have taught me is that a solid friendship is not impossible. I have many solid friendships myself, and you have no idea how tight I hold on to them; not because I have to or I’m afraid of being alone, but because of their tremendous value they have brought in my life’ just like my aunts. “Oh,  you’re exaggerating. I’m sure they’ve made you uncomfortable at some point.” In all honesty, absolutely not. They’ve always shown me their effectiveness of ushering my life with joy. It has been countless times that my thousand aunts have been there for me and my family ; they are my family. They saw me in mum’s belly, they saw me as a baby, and they saw me growing up. I visited them and their children many times; some were older than me and some were babies and I called them ‘cousins’. I remember one of them at my 6th birthday party, he was (I think) less than a year old; he’s now in his early 20’s! In addition, I recall a visit to another aunt when I was little, and her daughters introduced  me to the Curious George series (the old school ones). My aunts opened the doors for me to explore other worlds and languages (some of their children spoke German), and always reminding me of living life in quality and not quantity.

They have always had a positive impact in my life, and responded within seconds to any struggles I, my family, or other aunts have faced. They were there when my grandma passed away, and were there last year when my grandpa passed away. They’re like the A-Team, except with Aunts, or Guardian Angels if you want a different name choice. There was even a point when one of my aunts became my substitute Math teacher. Of course, I did get in trouble with her for talking too much (at this point, my mum was used to getting these type of phone calls), but she was gracious and during that time, I enjoyed Math –after she stopped teaching me, I disliked it again (typical).

What inspired me to write this post  is the current undeserving mishaps life has brought them lately. Without going into much detail due to privacy, I can say that it is related to grief and health issues. This is one of the ways I want to honour them. However, despite everything that is happening to them, they never break, but they show courage, kindness, and Faith. What a wonderful thing is to have people surrounding you, who are selfless, and act from their hearts to ensure YOU are well. They probably do not realize the impact they’ve had in my life (and others), but I can attest to the positive imprint that they have marked (and continue to do so) in this world, and I will pass on their legacy to my future generations.

I have a thousand beloved aunts, not in the literal form, but it sure feels like it, and that’s a good thing. I feel like I have a thousand aunts, because they’re walking angels who show that friendship is everlasting. They remind me of the goodness in the world and that love and true friendships still exist. Hold on tight to those you love and the ones who love you back, because eventually, their lives and our lives will let go of each other.

PS: This is my 100th post!

 

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

Through the eyes of my childhood: Chapter Two: La Hyper Girl

I started these series in order to remind myself of who I used to be, in comparison to who I am today. Here’s part one if you want to follow: Through the eyes of my childhood: Chapter One – Hiding

 

La Hyper girl

I was a hyper child and always ready to go. I think my parents would’ve made great marathon runners from chasing me all over the place ( I even learned how to walk trying to chase my dad). Then again, in my defence, my two grandfathers were athletes and so was my mum, so it was in my blood. Even though, the energy of a hundred suns combined ran through my body, I managed to sleep through the entire night, which is something my parents were incredibly grateful for. Nevertheless, I  could not be left with anyone but my parents or grandparents, without crying. No one ever knew why, but I like to theorize that it’s because I’m naturally sensitive.

One night my parents decided to go out and my aunt (dad’s sister) offered to babysit –if I had a time machine, I would go back and warn her not to. Despite my parents’ concerns about me throwing a fit, my aunt encouraged them to go out and have  fun (she was only trying to be nice, oh poor auntie!) ; little did she know, she was in for quite the night. They left me asleep, but as soon as they left, guess what happened? Yup,  I woke up and started crying (did I somehow managed to install surveillance cameras in my crib?). My aunt tried to calm me, and reassured me it was all going to be fine (because, in a moment of desperation your brain tells you this is logical), but nothing worked. She was smart (and desperate to shut me up), and resorted to digging through the hamper to get my parents’ shirts (so gross,poor aunt), and placed them next to me. It worked! I fell right asleep – sneaky aunt, how you fooled  me! Having had the odd feeling that something awful happened, my parents cut the night short and returned home early. As soon as she saw them, my aunt ran away in tears…nah, just kidding, but she was exhausted. After that night, my mum never left me with anyone, but my grandparents.

To this day, I’m still a hyper woman. It’s helped, though. There are a lot of things I would not have achieved had I not been hyper. However, my friends don’t let me drink coffee when I’m with them (can’t blame them), not because they don’t want me to, but can you imagine what I’d be like with caffeine running through me? I’d say like a rabid raccoon with a splinter in its tongue, trying to escape the gates of hell. I like to joke with them and tell them my steamy cup has coffee in it :p (it’s just peppermint tea). But, this is who I am. I like to enjoy life, heck I like to hate life sometimes, too. I’m not a robot on a happy mode 24/7, but I try to be. I break, I feel, I cry, I panic, I get anxious, but I’ve been in a lot of dark places in the past that I don’t want to go there again. I get bored, but somehow I manage to find something fun to do. I’m still sensitive, and I don’t know, but it’s like I can sense people. No, I don’t have magical powers or have a sixth sense, but I listen to my instincts a lot. If something or someone doesn’t feel right, I don’t accept it. I don’t cry when people approach me or when my relatives visit me –I cry when they leave, though.

This is who I am, and there are things that are just part of me. I never stopped being that baby and child, I just grew alongside them.

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Yup, I’m wearing a wig and sunglasses in this baby pic :p

❤ ❤ ❤ Love, Ellie ❤ ❤ ❤

Through the eyes of my childhood series: Chapter One – Hiding

We all have one thing in common; we were all children. It amazes me at the things I used to do when I was little, and how many of those things have followed me into adulthood. I’ve decided to start these new series called, “Through the eyes of my childhood.” I want to share with you the things I did when I was little, either from memory or the stories my parents have told me. I guess I’m also hoping you experienced the same, so I won’t seem like a lunatic.

First of all, one thing you need to know about me: I don’t drink coffee, because it’s as if I had natural caffeine running through veins on a daily basis. I’m like a possessed squirrel that was possessed by the Tasmanian devil that was possessed by the Road Runner. What I’m trying to say here is that I’m a hyper/happy person. Based on the stories I’ve been told, I used to be the same when I was little. I don’t know if I was a hyper/happy fetus, but it’s best if I don’t ask right now.

One of my favourite things to play was hide-and-go-seek. That game was the easiest for me to play; you just needed to know how to hide and how to find someone. It’s sad that nowadays, the only time I’d play this game would be if I were being chased by a creep, dinosaur, or a zombie. There were moments when I played by myself or with my sister (she’ll tell you I mostly teased her, but don’t listen to her), or I simply hid in order to escape into my own daydreaming world.

My favourite hiding place was my closet. I shared a room with my sister and the closet was big enough for us to fit inside. I sat inside to play with my stuffed animals and dolls. I was afraid of the dark, so I never closed the door, unless I wanted to tease my family. There was an instance when my mom was in the kitchen and I decided to hide in the closet (without telling her I was going to hide) until she figured I was gone and went all over the house to find me. In my mind, it was just a game, but in her mind it was a heartache. In my mind I probably went, “How was I supposed to know she thought I was lost? After all, I knew where I was.” But, she probably knew where I was and just played along. I mean, when I was 2 years old, I unlocked the front door and ran, so she was used to me playing tricks on her all the time (that’s another story I’m gonna tell later).

Nowadays, I have a thing for closets, because they are a great place to hide from reality (or a robber). I have a wooden shelf where I sit and play on the ipod, read, or imagine stories. I’m still waiting to go to Narnia, so perhaps it is my way to prepare for when it happens…I mean, IF it happens. Hey, I can dream 😉

Now I ask YOU, what was YOUR favourite place to hide?

 

 

Of course! The world doesn’t rule me today!