Hong Kong and Macau are our destination for our family’s summer vacation. This year we were joined by my mom and my sister!
Back in 2015, me, Daddy S and Heinel already went to Hong Kong which I also blogged about. However, it was just a quick trip and we only got to visit Disneyland (see about my post here). Thus, our excitement did not waver even if we are not first timers.
For this trip, we also skipped hotel reservations and instead tried AirBnb. We got a 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom home for just a price of one-standard hotel room at a very convenient location! Pretty neat huh?! If you want to read about our airbnb experience, just go visit my post.
As I am writing this blog, it is a Tuesday morning and my son Heinel is peacefully sleeping. He is currently on Day 4 of his hospital confinement because of Dengue. I believe we are past the critical stage and on our way to recovery.
This is not the first time that Dengue hit our family. Two years ago, Hendrix also had it but the strain is much tamer. The one that Heinel got was a strong one. We were caught off-guard since most of the dengue myths we know were debunked.
I used to worry how I will explain to EA the condition of his brother. I often wondered how I will explain to him cerebral palsy in such a way that his young mind will understand. I have all these worries for so long and I even researched topics about it. But later, I realized that just like anything, that moment of “the talk” will happen when my child is ready, and that he will come to me when he is.
It is when he was 7 and Little H was 3 when EA started asking questions. He begun his curiosity by comparing Little H with their cousins who are of the same age as his little brother. He asked why their cousins are walking and Little H is not; why their cousins are talking and why Little H is not. He asked the questions with so much innocence. I can see that he was trying to reconcile and make sense of everything. At that point, i knew, EA is ready.
We welcomed 2016 with so much excitement and anticipation. I must say, it did not disappoint! I do not have big wishes for every new year that comes and so it is such a sweet surprise when it gives me more than what I expect. Here’s a quick recap of the year that was for me and my family:
What a great way to start the year when we had our first playdate/Christmas party with our NICU family friends. We, the Sampangs, Ngkings, Mendozas and Garcias met each other at the Neonatal ICU of Capitol Medical Center when all of our kids namely Hendrix, Clyde and Clint, Elias and Eae were born preemies. The hours of waiting and taking turns of us parents to visit out babies resulted to a friendship that extended beyond the borders of the hospital. Four years after meeting each other, we still get together for playdates and catch ups. It is so nice to see our kids grow together.
The 18th day of February is always special because it is the birthday of our firstborn Heinel! This year he turned 8! Heinel has always been such a polite, good and well-behaved kid, and this year was no exception! I am also glad that this year he was able to expand his horizon and became more confident. We are so blessed to have such a good son!
Four years ago I gave birth to a teeny-weeny-cutie baby, who, even though was very small, cries the loudest especially when he is hungry. It was March 15 and that boy is our dear Hendrix. This year, when he turned four, he continued to amaze us with his strength, determination and cheerfulness. Hendrix is always our sunshine even during the stormiest days!
In parenting two boys, running a household, having our own jobs, having that “we time” for Daddy S and I is not that easy. Our usual couple moments are dinners or movie nights. But last month, we I got a rare chance to have that exclusive time together outside the country. Our destination, Singapore!
Guilty as we are in leaving our boys behind, we are excited for this trip. The last time that we had an out of country adventure as just husband and wife was way back 2011 when we went to London. That was five years ago!
It was a very short trip, but we gladly took it. Four days was enough to rejuvinate our husband and wife spirit, and not too long to miss our kids a lot.
We had been receiving a lot of inquiries about Japan and travelling in general. Today I will answer the frequently asked questions (FAQs) by you guys! But please note that all my answers are just base on my personal experiences. I do not claim to be an expert traveler nor claims to know Japan really well.
After 4 days in Tokyo, we continued our Japan adventure in Osaka!
From Tokyo, we took a two-hour bullet train ride to Osaka. I have always been curious with how fast these popular trains of Japan are. Boy, it was really fast! Like we are zooming past everything!
Bullet train was a comfortable ride, even for the kids. The seat spaces are big, as well as the leg room. There are lavatories on both ends of the train. Most of the passenger have packed lunch and sandwiches that they ate on the train. But in case you do not have food with you, there are trolleys going around where you can buy snacks like sandwiches, chips, drinks and even ice cream!
TIP: In bullet trains, passengers are allowed to bring-in only one cabin size luggage due to the limited space available. Thus, it is best to have your big luggage shipped from your location, for us, Tokyo to Osaka. Inquire from your hotel for these luggage transfers at a fee. It usually takes 24 hours for the luggage to arrive so make sure to pack in your bullet train luggage, your essentials and valuables as well as clothing for at least 48 hours.
In Tokyo, Daddy S and I were thinking of how we can include Mt. Fuji in our busy itinerary. But since it will not be anywhere near our itinerary, we decided to let go of the plan. But lucky for us, during the train ride, we passed by Mt Fuji! It was such a treat!
This year, we take on a new travel adventure as a family in one of my dream destinations, Japan! As there are a lot that I want to share with all of you about our trip, I will be posting a three-part blog series.
We had been planning our Japan trip since August last year. It is a product of months of research and Google-ing to come up with our itinerary. Just like in our previous travels, we did not opt for a tour package to give us flexibility in terms of time and pacing, as we have kids in tow. Plus add the fact that it is the first time that we will be travelling as a family to a country that neither Daddy S and I had been to before. We wanted to make our trip as smooth as possible to give our kids the best Japan experience.
We begin our 8-day adventure with the most popular city in Japan, Tokyo!