Saturday, January 29, 2011

New Year's Day at the Dela Cruzes, Amici/ Cara Mia, and Le Ching

January 1, 2011. As expected, we all woke up late. Then, our first order of business was to prepare to leave for my parents' house. New Year's day is always held at my parents' house, where we usually start the year with a big breakfast, followed by another big lunch, and then, perhaps, another big dinner (should we decide to stay a little longer). For most filipinos (especially my family), eating during New Year's Eve and New Year's day signifies abundance and "good life" for the rest of the year. Picture Scarlett O'Hara in the movie, "Gone with the Wind", reciting the lines:

"As God as my witness, I will never be hungry again!"

Now, I'm only being theatrical. It's nothing like that, really. It's only a family tradition.:)

However, this time around, we had my aunt and uncle from San Francisco. I mentioned in previous posts that they flew over for the holiday season...their first since 1996. Their last visit to the country was in 2006, when Cupid and I asked them BOTH to be one of the Godparents (principal sponsors) at our wedding. They are like my second parents. So sure, this one's a really special get-together!

The girls, Maia (in blue) and Andie (in pink), with Lolo Ver (left) and Lolo-Uncle Ernie (right).

The lunch spread.  Not in photo were the cake and ice cream for dessert.  I wasn't able to take pictures of the breakfast fare because we woke up late and, therefore, got there late.
(1st row)  Crispy Pata  |  Camaron Rebosado
(2nd row)  Milkfish (Bangus) with onions, tomatoes, ginger  |
Chopped unripe mango with Bagoong na Alamang (Shrimp Paste), onions, tomatoes
(3rd row)  Pancit Bam-I  |  Ice-cold Coke

After lunch, while the oldies and babies were napping, my brother informed that he was in the mood for some gelato.  So Cupid, my brother-in-law, my sister and I got him to agree to treat us to Cara Mia inside Amici, along Tomas Morato.  While in Amici, we couldn't help but also order some pizzas -- Al Quattro Formaggi (four cheese) and Frutti di Mare (mixed seafood).

Amici counter  |
Al Quattro Formaggi Pizza (too bad, we forgot to take a photo of the Frutti di Mare)

And still, even if we were already stuffed, we still remembered to get what we came there for...Gelato!

My hubby Cupid managed to take a photo of us placing our orders of gelato at the Cara Mia counter
(Top-right)  Nocciola (hazelnut) and Sans Rival
(Above)  Oreo Cookie and Strawberry Supreme (left)  |  Cioccolato (right)

We returned to the house to find the oldies already awake and making plans as to where we will have dinner.  We had time to "rest" our tummies while we waited for the two girls to rouse from their nap and freshen up.  Ideas (restaurant names) were thrown around, and while we waited for some to finally make up their minds, some of us entertained the girls by...

...playing the piano...

Yours truly and my Maia  |  Little Andie  |  My mommy

...playing "Ring-Around-The-Rosies"...

The two (2) Lolos playing with Maia and Andie.  I can hear the sound of brittle bones cracking while all this was going on.  (They will do anything to entertain the girls....aaaww!)

...and other things...

Andie saying:  "It's so noisy!" and "Stop copying me, Uncle Ernie!" :-D

Andie and Maia having a "stare down" :)

The Ranjos (Uncle Ernie and Tita Didi) with the girls.  I'm so happy they finally met and spent some precious bonding time.

The Dela Cruz, Ranjo, Soriano, and Tobias families!

Finally, it was decided we would go the Chinese food route, and Le Ching Tea House over at Techno Hub was the restaurant of choice.

The restaurant was full that time.  So while waiting to be seated, everybody just strolled around the breezy TechnoHub grounds.

Maia strolling in the TechnoHub park with her Lolo Ver :)

Maia seen here appreciating and enjoying all the lighted, decorative balls at said park.

Familia Soriano  |  My good-looking parents :)

We were finally seated and ordered various items from the menu.  From siopao, all kinds of mami (soupy noodle dish), rice toppings, dimsum and dumplings..  It's just too bad that I forgot to take pictures of all our food.  I guess we were all just very hungry!  (Yes, I know. We already ate a lot prior to dinner.  Hehehe)

While the ladies and babes were enjoying their food, the men here were all still waiting for their order of Spare Ribs Rice (one of Le Ching's bestsellers).

The look of satisfaction are evident in all our faces!
(1st row)  The Tobiases  |  The Sorianos
(2nd row)  The Ranjos  |  My brother Marc and my niece, Andie
(3rd row)  Dad and Mom  |  My brother Mikko

Andie and Maia having one last go by the fountains before we all bid goodbye.

The end to another "full-filling" day!

I hope you enjoyed reading this post and viewing the photos, as much as I enjoyed composing and putting it all together.

Indeed, nothing is better than spending the day with one's family.  And you need not wait for an occasion or holiday in order to do so.   With family, every day is a special day.  Don't you agree?

Thank you for your time.  As always, I bid you Godspeed!

Mama Mia is a 30-something wife; stay-at-home mom to one; blogger; and author of Online Confessions of a Stay-at-Home Mom (OCSAHM). Learn more about Mia here, or contact her via this page. You can also get instant updates on this blog by following Mia on Twitter @miadsoriano; by "Liking" the official OCSAHM Facebook page; or by subscribing via Email or RSS.
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