Backpacking bro’s macho picture, penguin poop & planking in Antarctica

Stomping ground: Salar de Uyani, Bolivia

Last night, as Nike and I were scrambling to book a flight through Cebu Pacific’s Just for Fun for Every Juan P-1 Seat sale (ongoing until Jan 22, or while seats last), I finally received my brother, Oliver‘s photos (for the family wall) of his recent backpacking trip through South America, Antarctica, Egypt and then Turkey to visit our sister Valerie and her husband Capt. Josh.  I am so proud of him, and I won’t deny it, a little jealous, too.

Macho picture of Macchu Picchu


Chilling with the penguins in Antarctica

This is what penguin poop looks like, if you're interested to know. Fortified with a pungent ammonia scent!

Planking in Antarctica!


Khufu's pyramid, Egypt


Cappadocia with big sister Val and her husband, Josh

This definitely fans the flames of our wanderlust!



In 2012, we will…

Our parenting resolutions for 2012 were published in the Inquirer’s Lifestyle Parenting section today. Thanks to Pam Pastor for giving me 5 minutes to think of these. LOL.

“1. Spend more time with our kids, Noah and Moses.

2. Make sure Noah gets to school on time, all the time. That means up by 7 a.m., out of the house by 7:30 a.m.

3. Less time on the gaming consoles and Internet, more time for reading. Buy more books and less Transformers.

4. Organize and declutter our home.

5. Take more pictures and put them up on our family wall.

6. Blog about our family adventures more (

7. Swimming lessons for the kids this summer.

8. Draw up travel plans for 2013, our first trip out of the country as a family.

9. Let our kids be kids and make sure they enjoy their childhood.

10. Be more the persons we want our kids to be.”

—Mark Parlade and Nike Sevilla Lorenzo

Full article in What’s your New Year’s resolution as a parent?

Mo’ Moses

It wasn’t too long ago we asked Noah to help us pray for a
healthy, happy new baby.

It’s been four months since Moses Callan was born on September 7, 2011. Last Saturday, our pediatrician told us little Moses is a little too healthy. At four months, he
looks/weighs like a six month old toddler.Looks like we got our prayer answered, and more.


The early nerd

I feel proud whenever Noah says he wants to look and be like me.  Happy he’s taken to the things I love: comics, science fiction (he’s quite the Youngling — he knows the Star Wars mythos better than most fans I know) and video games. He also took to wearing my trademark lens-less specs so he can look like mini me.

Nerds of the same feather

It seems I may have let paternal pride, well, blind me. How could I have known he’d also be predisposed to poor eyesight like me? All those hours watching TV, bonding over video games on his PSP, PS3, Wii and X-box, reading my comics. Now, he has to wear real eyeglasses — and he’s only in first grade!

So we got him these kiddie frames a couple of weeks ago and we’ve been teaching him to take care of it, clean it, make sure it isn’t scratched or broken when he’s rough-housing with his classmates. I went through a lot of eyeglasses when I was younger. But, no, we won’t be posting those old photos.  

He’s all about the nerdplay now.

More importantly, we’re teaching him proper reading positions and conditions, to eat right — I had to make up a story about me loving to munch on raw carrots when I was a kid, limited his TV time and gave him just one hour of video games on weekends. Hopefully, his eyesight won’t deteriorate any further like mine has. Tsk, tsk, tsk.


X-ray visions

Had Noah’s chest x-rayed last weekend as a requirement for his new school. The image struck me — I had almost forgotten that he had open heart surgery just three years ago in June, 2008.

And I had forgotten these wires the doctors had used to mend his sternum after they performed Infundibulectomy, an open-heart procedure, to fix the Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD) he was born with. I fell back on my chair as I let it all come back to me: the prognosis, the dread, the pleading and bargaining, the search for the best pediatric cardio-surgeons, asking people for help and being grateful to relatives, friends, even total strangers who helped raise money for the operation.

Watching helplessly as the nurses drugged him and wheeled him to the operating room. Surrendering to the will of an infinitely benevolent universe to see my son through. Marveling at Noah when he woke up just two hours after the operation, fending off the nurses and demanding to see his parents. Sleeping on the floor of the Heart Center while he was in recovery and pediatric ICU. His doctors threatening to inject me with morphine if I didn’t relax (that wasn’t much of a threat. In fact, I dared them). Whew. And wow.

Knowing what we do now about congenital heart disease, we have to be more careful with baby Moses. He’s due for congenital screening in July. And If you see Noah now, you’d never guess he had a heart condition and survived cardiac intervention. All he remembers about his ordeal is his Tita bringing him Jollibee at the hospital to cheer him up, bless his nuclear-powered little heart.

Our yaya needs a textmate

I came back from vacation tonight to find out Yaya A left yesterday to tend to something urgent and has not returned though she promised Nike she’d be back this morning.

So Yaya B lent me her phone (nice of her, I thought) so I could get Yaya A’s number and text her what’s up. Of course, I needed to know if anything happened to her or if she just wanted to ditch us.

But then, while looking for Yaya A’s phone number, I accidentally saw sext messages sent out by Yaya B to MANY different guys — graphic, filthy, bad porn movie lines! She’s led them to believe she’s a pretty young thing (she MMS-ed photos of caucasian models, with come ons in Tagalog and Ilocano — gawd there’s one born every minute) named Cindy in her 20’s, but she’s actually a mild-mannered, bible-toting lola in her mid-50’s. Never actually seen her read it, though.

Yaya A is definitely out. I already called her agent to ask for a replacement. If she does come back by 7 am tomorrow, which I asked her to do through text because my I couldn’t understand what she was saying through the line, and from the laughter and music in the background, it didn’t seem like there was really any ’emergency’ — she’ll find her stuff at the village guard house.

Jury’s still out on closet nympho Yaya B. But maybe I shouldn’t judge? That’s her business. She works hard, cooks well, doesn’t complain. But then I don’t know just how schizo she is — and it’s always the quiet ones! Anyway, I don’t feel comfortable having her around. What if one of her victims found out he’s been taken for a ride and came gunning for her? You hire a maid and you hire her baggage — that includes husbands or/and boyfriends, even sextmates. Sheesh. It’s getting harder and harder to find good help these days.

Sigh. These two were supposed to replace to a real good yaya we lost last month — we lost her to her girlfriend.

Moses supposes…

…neither toeses nor roses! You can’t miss it — it’s a boy! Somebody hand me a cigar!

This was our second ultra sound at Hi-Precision that day. We just had to know. After we couldn’t see from the first procedure as the baby was sound asleep on his pillows of placenta, the doctor told Nike to eat some chocolates and come back in a few minutes. I was not so sure that was a good idea, but Nike was craving for some anyway, so I caved. The sugar woke the baby up and it wasn’t long til we saw what we needed to see. I was so giddy! So were Nike and the doctor.

The doctor was very patient and pleasant. Nike agrees, pretty, too. It’s good to have med-testing facilities like Hi-Precision so close to our home. Just got my own thyroid test results (another blog for another day) from them yesterday, as a matter of fact.

Well, Moses Callan, you’ll probably never live this video down. When you’re famous someday, TMZ can easily dig this up. But there’s nothing to be ashamed of from the looks of it. Daddy’s already proud!

Meet Crash Test Mommy

I don’t know how it happened. How could a gangly (then) geek (still) like me have scored a goddess like this?

Ok, so I couldn’t help it. I smiled, flirted (feebly) and maybe contrived a little. I told a close friend of hers I liked her, knowing she would eventually be told. And that’s how the goddess fell.

And nearly eleven years later, I still frequently find myself staring at her in bed asking what I could’ve done to deserve her. And I’ve certainly done a lot of things she could’ve justifiably left me for.

Yet, here she is. Tonight, she fell asleep in my arms, and our son, Noah on my chest, It’s the best feeling ever. (Then I snuck out for a cigarette and some TV) 

Thanks for standing by me, hon. I’d be lost without you and I wouldn’t be so driven if it weren’t for you and the family you’ve given me. I just really want to give you and the boys (and, fine, the beagle brigade!) a good life. I know I’m not always fun to be around, but we both know you’re the funny and caring one in this relationship. 

Photo by Jill Lejano

You were named well, Nike, my sweet goddess of victory, my exotic, erotic baby momma. I know it’s a little late (surprise, surprise) but happy mothers’ day!

Baby, we ♥ you already


I have been unjustifiably remiss in updating this blog and I’d like to apologize. Not to the two or three people whose fancy I may have caught with my first few posts (but thanks for the encouragement, Teddy M, Jing L, Donna) but to my family. I put up this blog so one day, Nike, Noah and I can look back and easily remember moments well and wonderfully, meaningfully lived.

Sure, there’s my Facebook which I’ve filled with a gazillion anecdotes about my son’s inherited charm and wit, and of photos of weekend adventures few and far between. But there’s only so much you can share in a status update or an album. Fun as it is, Facebook’s like blogging for the lazy. Or the REALLY busy. 

So life’s given me a reminder. That, again, I must always be present in the moment, to remember that life isn’t and  always about work. That this life I live now isn’t solely my own — hasn’t been for awhile now, I keep forgetting — but my family’s. That ADHD and procrastinating aren’t becoming of a dad. And this reminder is slowly, steadily growing inside Nike’s tummy. In September, we’ll have another bundle of joy so we can yet again live the incomparable joys of parenthood that having Noah gave us.

Here it is, our first look at our baby’s beautiful, beating heart:

And from the sound of this video, we’re in for quite another ride. Little baby, it seems you’ve got a train for a ticker!

You’re already part of our family, so we’ve already got a name for you: Moses if you’re a boy, because maybe your dad’s got a messianic complex – you’ll find out soon enough. It’ll be so cool raising a Noah AND a Moses. Or Nina, if you’re a girl, after your great grandmother. She was a loving lola, a public school teacher who encouraged your dad’s love of reading by letting him sneak out books from their library. 

Either way, your mommy, kuya Noah and I will always love you.  We already do.

I can’t wait to hold you in my arms!