Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I meant to write this as soon as I started this blog except that with all the other things that I had to attend to, updating this post had taken a back seat.  But because Nina will soon be celebrating her 2nd birthday, it’s only but fitting that I put up this post before she celebrates another year.

I belong to this wonderful e-group of “newlywed” couples called n@wies.  The group started as a resource group for couples who are in the process of planning out their weddings, hence the name Weddings At Work or W@W.  Once the wedding preparations end, you then transition to the Newlyweds At Work (N@W)  of which I am now a member.  This wonderful group allows members to share experiences and pointers about almost anything from parenthood, sale alerts, to travel tips.

It is to this group that I share details of Kuya’s first birthday and his many milestones as well as my many concerns and prayer requests all with regard to Janina’s condition.  At one point, I posted a rant about how I felt about not being able to provide Janina with a big party for her upcoming 1st birthday.  You see, I had shared reviews about Kuya’s 1st birthday party – he had a big one complete with balloons, a magician, games, lootbags and lots of guests.  In as much as we wanted to give Janina a big party of her own, she had just come from surgery and we needed to be practical with our spending habits.

Little did I know that the post had become a catalyst for the group to put together a special gift for our little girl.  One evening, my friend Benz, whom I had known in college (and coincidentally was the founder of the group) dropped by the house to deliver a breastfeeding pin/badge that she made for all breastfeeding moms including myself.  To my surprise, she was not alone – several n@wies were with her and they had camera’s and video cams with them.  They came not only to give the badge but also to present us with a letter:

They practically took care of everything and all we needed to do was pick out a date, the theme and finalize details with all the suppliers they had contacted.  Needless to say, I was overwhelmed-speechless with all the emotion that was going through me.

The day before the party, Benz contacted me to check on how things were.  Her call came as I was about to leave to pick up Janina’s dress from the dressmaker and she volunteered to make arrangements for the dress to be delivered to the house instead.  When the dress (or should I say gown) arrived, along with it were dozens and dozens of gifts and cards and letters from n@wies who wanted to make sure that Janina had a grand celebration.   It was like Christmas all over again – multiplied several times more for us!

Nina surrounded by all her gifts from the n@wies

My little girl’s party was nothing but big – it was GRAND. 

It was more than I could have ever hoped for her to have.  Truly she is blessed to have so many loving people around her and we are blessed as well to have been given such a beautiful child to take care of and to inspire us to share a part of ourselves to others.

Nina surrounded by her gifts AFTER the party

Since that time I have received several messages saying that because of my post they learned a lot about Apert Syndrome or that they were blessed with our story. 

Because of that, I now have this dream of putting up a local support group for families dealing with Apert Syndrome as well as other Craniofacial syndromes.  My wish is to be able to establish a support group for Filipino families and to later on create awareness about Craniofacial syndromes so that people would learn to understand them more and not to discriminate them.  I know that in time, this will all become a reality.

Party Credits:
Party Coordinator, Balloons & Tarp – Jacque Tan of Partyboosters
Gown – Veluz
Catering – Josiah’s Catering
Photo-Video – Imagination & Abbie Co
Cake – Judy Uson of Cake Artist
Invitation – Printsonalities
Photobooth – Baicapture
Guestbook – Erwin Leyros
Desserts – C is for Cupcakes, Cheri Sambo-Pena, Fernando’s Bakery, Agnes BaƱez, Liza Esteban & Marj Duran
Food carts – Yan-ple, 5th Avenue Pizza, Scrambles by Chrissie Salvador, Kopiroti
Entertainment – Ruther Uruqia and Rommel Mejia
Sound System – Janice of Mommy Mundo
Lootbags, Souvenirs and Prizes – Sheila Contento of Let’s personalize it, Leslie Garcia, Veronica Pantig, Pia Pabelico-Rebenque, Joefe Cayabyab, Inday & Norman Legato, Jennifer Lo-Gana - kiddie stools, Just for Fun, Robby Rabbit
Other food carts and sponsors – Camille Mortiz
And most of all, the generous n@wies spearheaded by Benz
(did I forget anyone else?  I sincerely hope not.)

a bound compilation of all the emails that went around just to make the party happen
We love you guys!  You have blessed our lives and the life of our precious daughter immensely.  We are humbled by your generosity and we hope that we can be as big a blessing to others as you have been to us.

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