At the current state that the whole world is in, we are just fortunate to wake up the following day. So when someone in the family has a birthday, we need to celebrate and be thankful because living to tell another year is already a blessing. Our family recently celebrated our daughter Shane’s 7th birthday milestone with a simple lunch and a prayer.
Grateful for Many Things
The fact that I am still sitting here in front of a laptop, being able to write my thoughts while the electric fan is buzzing beside me reminds me that life is still good.
Recently, two unfortunate incidents happened to our family, specifically hubby, the day before and on Shane’s birthday. These are on top of all the mental, psychological, and economic crisis we are facing because of Covid-19.
But the fact is, we are still safe, we are together, we have a home, and we have food to eat.
So we celebrate for God is good.
And I declare His continued love, grace, favor, and mercy in our lives. Someday, we can look back and see the hand of the Lord in all these.
The 7th Birthday Milestone
Most families celebrate the first and the 7th birthday with a bang. It is customary more than anything but we are part of that group that celebrates our children’s birthdays like these. That is why we have created a birthday tradition for our kids—something that we would replicate for the next child. It is in the interest of fair treatment between siblings.
We did that for Achi Shawna and planned the same for Shane—a birthday party for their first and seventh years. In the process, we did not really overextend ourselves—we just spent according to what our income and family budget can afford.
Covid-19 and Cancelled Plans
But well, the Covid-19 pandemic happened. All our plans since mid-March, especially our travel plans, have been cancelled. Our last family outing was March 14.
- Related: Life Lessons for Girls from Frozen 2
The following day, March 15, the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) was declared in Bacolod City. Most of the areas in the Philippines followed suit.
For Holy Week, we were supposed to meet up with relatives from around the country and the United States for a grand family reunion. We would be holding it in Boracay so we already made plans and reservations. But with the ECQ, we were forced to cancel our trip.
Shane, who was so excited to spend time on the beach, remained content with taking daily baths in a wash basin. While the kids were disappointed, they didn’t whine or cry—and that’s enough for me to be grateful.
Plans for her 7th Birthday Milestone Party
Shane is one friendly kid so she really wanted to invite friends to her 7th birthday milestone party. She does not really ask for a grand party in a hotel—just a gathering where she could play with her friends. Two of the things she was really concerned about were the games and entertainment.
She was very much involved in the planning—from her birthday costume to her theme. Like an old soul, her party theme was Havana and for entertainment, she planned to have videoke instead of a magician. Haha That’s Shane for you.
Honestly, I really felt bad for Shane. Achi Shawna was able to celebrate her 7th birthday with relatives and friends. Moreover, she was still able to celebrate her 11th birthday with girl friends in a salon. Read: A Mani-Pedi Birthday Party with Friends. We were able to hold it one week before the lockdown.
And Shane couldn’t. I think I was more sad than her that her party didn’t push through.
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Her Sakura Unicorn 7th Birthday Lunch
Since we are under austerity measures because of the crisis, we no longer bought a birthday dress for her. Instead, I rummaged for old costumes and found Achi Shawna’s old kimono. Shane has never worn it yet so we decided to have a birthday photo shoot.
At the Bacolod Barter Community, I searched for plastic sakura blossoms to barter for, but a friend of mine offered hers. I was so grateful because since it was a loan, I won’t have a problem with storage after the event. We will just return it after we are done.
All these things came together like a grand favor from God. How serendipitous could it be? So it became a sakura blossoms party instead of Havana. But the unicorns can’t be completely ignored. Shane still loves them so we just mixed and matched them.
For several months now, I have been bartering our stuff for needs like milk, supplements, alcohol, and other consumable items for the home.
But sometimes, I would be fortunate enough to encounter unicorn items and I would bid for them. I won some bids and these items became Shane’s birthday gifts.
In order that she will have many gifts, I wrapped them individually. So she had gifts from Papa, Mama, and Achi Shawna. Add to that her Ninang Pynky and uncle’s gifts—she had five presents to open. She was already very happy on her birthday!
Shane’s reaction when we sang the birthday song for her:
Shane’s Sharelebration for Mingo Meals
Since we didn’t have the liberty of having friends over for her birthday party, we held a fund-raiser for the Negrense Volunteers for Change (NVC). We brought in the friends whom we were supposed to invite in a Facebook group so that they can greet Shane and take part in a fundraiser.
The idea is to gather funds for healthy Mingo Meals that the NVC distributes to children of marginalized families. Our friends took part in this so instead of giving gifts to Shane, they contributed to the help fund. Shane was very happy about this project because it had been her prayer and desire to help poor children. She got her birthday wish.
Will write more about this after our turn-over.
The Party Food
Despite being handy in the kitchen, this homecooking mom no longer had the energy after our 3-day media drive with Ford.
So I ordered food from different suppliers and just cooked carbonara upon Shane’s request. Her second request was lengua with mushroom sauce. While I already have the ox tongue in the freezer, I don’t have the capacity to do it anymore. The decorating already took the whole morning.
Will just cook lengua another day because Shane has developed a liking for it.
Milk Tea Bar for Parties
One of the gifts that Shane received was a milk tea bar from Prieteas. It is owned by Tita AJ Prietos, who used to be an events host whom we always meet in birthday parties in the past. I will also write more about her soon, as she has also shifted gears during the quarantine.
If you are interested to book a milk tea bar package, please contact:
- Prieteas FB Page: PrieteasMilkTEa
- Owned by: AJ Naquita Prietos
- Mobile: (0933) 266-4099
The Birthday Milestone
All in all, we remain thankful for all the blessings we have received. We gain some, we lose some. Like most people, we are also dealing with each day as it comes, trusting God for His fresh grace and favor every morning.
God bless us all! Stay safe everyone!
Resilient Pinay Mom Stories
Meanwhile, here are some interesting stories about resilient Pinay moms. Click on the links below:
- Mom Helps Battle Hubby’s Liver Cirrhosis During Covid-19 ECQ
- Bacolod Mompreneurs Distribute the M2 Health Drink in NIR
- Mommy Power: The House that Barter Built
- The Farmtory: Surviving the Lockdown With Tauge
- How a Bacolod Mom Changed the Philippines with Barter
- Mommy Cleth and her Homemade Kare-Kare with Love
- Coping with the Crisis: From Events Planning to Soap-Making