By The Beach It’s Father’s Day Any Day

One day in a year, the world over celebrates Father’s Day. One day in a year, we make all dads feel special, appreciated, remembered. But in all reality, dads everywhere, naturally simple as they are, feels like it’s Father’s Day any day they get to do something they love with their families. They get to feel that it’s Father’s Day when they get to laugh, play, bond and create happy memories with their children. That it feels like Father’s Day when their families take a moment to express their gratitude and affection. That it’s instant Father’s Day when dads get a big hug and hear their children say, “I love you dad.”

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On our way to Gaido’s for early dinner in Galveston Island, my wife said, “Can we pass by the seawall?” I wondered why but as we head close to a familiar hotel, she pointed towards the parking lot and said, “Can you park there. I need to check something. She went inside the hotel and after a few minutes came back and told us, “Guys, I have a surprise for you. I booked us overnight at Holiday Inn. Hurry, we can still swim by the pool before dinner.” Feels like Father’s Day? Yes it did!

At the restaurant, we had the most delicious oysters, grilled Mahi-Mahi, lobster soup and Pecan Pie. Feels like Father’s Day? Yes it did!

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The next day, I took a walk to watch the sunrise. It felt nice. The solitude was refreshing, calming, renewing. I had a peaceful, “Me and my Father God” prayer time as I watched the waves gently rolling towards the shore. It was blissful. When my son woke up, I took him to the East part of the beach. We stacked up rocks and pebbles to create our father and son Art piece, ran and jumped along the seawall pretending we were superheroes. Feels like Father’s Day? Yes it did!

After a delicious breakfast buffet, we drove towards our favorite island spot, the Galveston Island State Park. We were so lucky. It was Beach and Bay Day. This only happens once a year. This is also the first time I’ve seen the water so calm and clear that I could see schools of fishes swimming around us as my son rode the waves on his body board. Feels like Father’s Day? Yes it did!

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We did crabbing and caught lots of small fishes, shrimp, hermit crabs and jelly fish. My son joined the park’s Search and Find game determined to finish it all and win the prize.

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We did turtle racing and sand castle building.

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We did fishing and kayaking.

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At the bay side, we did bird watching and caught more sea creatures. We also saw a lost baby duck which a lady found wandering along the road. The lady gave the baby duck to the Park Ranger. Hopefully, they found its nest and brought it home.

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My son happily showed us his winning prize…a Tote Bag. Perfect for our next beach trip.

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While waiting for the Sunset, we raced, jumped, hopped, rolled, attempted somersault, made silly faces, laughed, dreamed of our next beach family adventure. Just when I thought we were blessed with so much, the spectacular skyline began to unfold as the Sun slowly descends. Colors of breathtaking reds, oranges, yellows, purples and more created a nature’s masterpiece that made that day hard to forget. Feels like Father’s Day. Yes it did!

To my amazing dad, father-in-law, to all the dads out there and more importantly to our loving Father God in heaven,  Happy Father’s Day. Thank you for everything.

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!                                                                                   – 1 John 3:1

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Mom, I Do Remember

Mom, I remember the times you held my hand and gave me comfort when I feel hurt or sad. I remember the times you shared with me your funny jokes, tickled my toes and armpit to make me laugh. I remember the times you take me to magical places every time you read me my favorite night-time story books. I remember the times you prayed with me before I sleep and assured me that everything will be alright. I remember every fireworks, every comfort blanket I called “lampin,” every travel, every journey, every milestone, every little joy you bring into my life.

IMG_5014Mom, I remember our many fun Summers and beach adventures. Did you remember the time we did river tubing at Moody Garden’s Palm Beach? How about the time we rode the roller coaster? We both were screaming and laughing so hard. What about the time we went fishing for the first time at  61st St. Fishing Pier ? We were super lucky to catch lots of fishes that day.

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Mom, I do remember the many simple holiday events and birthday celebrations we did together. Remember my 8th birthday at Galveston State Park? You and dad sang “Happy Birthday,” as I blew my birthday candle. I remember making a wish for each balloon I let go. I know they all will come true because I saw them fly up, up into the sky. Mom, I remember clearly how I dove my face into the cake so I can eat the icing. Dad forgot the spoon and forks at home so I ate my cake without using my hands. Smart and creative, right mom?
IMG_5012Mom, I do remember all our family vacations and weekend getaways. I remember swimming all day, body boarding, making sand castles and eating ice cream. I remember waking up early each morning all excited for the hotel’s free breakfast. Mmm, those freshly made waffles were delicious. I remember our pirate  ship adventure and treasure hunting at Clearwater Beach. I remember the pod of dolphins jumping at the side of our tug boat. I remember because they all made me so happy.

IMG_5066Mom, I remember the times you played and ran with me, explored and discovered the world with me. I remember the times you hopped,  jumped and caught stars with me. Remember the time you helped me do somersault? With you mom, I can turn into a superhero with superpowers and all. With you, I can do just about anything. 

IMG_5276Mom, I remember our walks to school. I remember you preparing my breakfast and school snacks everyday. I remember you helping me patiently with my homework and keeping your cool when I become stubborn or distracted.

I will never forget you for motivating and inspiring me to follow my own dreams and do the things that makes me happy.

Mom, I do remember how good it feels to be home with you. Home is when I am with you. I do remember and will always remember what love is because of you. I remember the times you helped me face my fears and problems with faith and courage. I remember the many times you inspired me to hope and never give up. I remember each priceless life lessons. I remember us taking time to enjoy and appreciate nature enveloped with its many sunsets and beautiful memories.

IMG_5279Mom, everyday I remember and feel God’s love through you…with you.

Love is patient, love is kind, it isn’t jealous, it doesn’t brag, it isn’t arrogant, it isn’t rude, it doesn’t seek its own advantage, it isn’t irritable, it doesn’t keep a record of complaints, it isn’t happy with injustice, but it is happy with the truth. Love puts up with all things, trusts in all things, hopes for all things, endures all things.

13 Now faith, hope, and love remain—these three things—and the greatest of these is love.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 13:1

IMG_5437The best mom in the world makes you smile the happiest, dream the highest, shine the brightest, live the fullest and remember the fondest of memories. 

Love you Mom. Thank you for everything. You are the best mom ever!

To my wife, my mom, my mother-in-law and to all the mothers out there, this post is a tribute to all of you and the many amazing things you do for your family and everyone around you. You all are awesome! The world is a better, kinder, happier place because of you. We are at our best, seek our best because of you.

Today and always, we honor, celebrate and thank you for all the love, light, hope and joy you give generously everyday. God bless all our mothers. God bless you.

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When I Turn 44

“40’s is a period not to go into a mid-life crisis, it’s that period to create the best moments in life. It’s a time to be the person we missed becoming! Looking forward to life’s many new beginnings, adventures and possibilities at age 44!” IMG_3440 “Whatever the past had brought us, whatever life will bring us, so many reasons to hope and stay afloat…” One day I simply woke up and realize how time passed me by and I barely scratched the full and exciting life I was meant to live and experience. I’d been zombified with work, responsibilities, worries, problems, fears, insecurities and the never-ending demands and expectations of this world. One day I  just woke up and realize I no longer belong to the world but I belong to the one who created this world and his words alone will satisfy the restless wanderings of the Island Traveler. Time is a great teacher. Time is a great healer. I’m just glad it wasn’t too late to turn around, change and pursue what truly matters. IMG_1543 Best Birthday Ever! I came home from work with all the lights still off. The hallway and living room was unusually dark. I was expecting my son awake and getting ready for school but perhaps he and his mom overslept. Just when I was heading for the bedroom to wake them up, they both jumped behind the kitchen counter yelling, “Surprise!” I was thrilled surprised  and my heart-felt like it just bounced inside my chest. My wife said, “I got you the happy smile balloons cause I just want you to be happy all the time.” She knew me too well. Truly grateful for having a family who brings me happiness everyday. To me, that’s the best birthday present of all. That morning my son played the piano while singing shyly, “Happy Birthday Daddy, Happy Birthday Daddy. Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday Day…Happy Birthday Day Daddy.” His mom whispered, “He stayed late last night practicing and rehearsing that for you.” My heart swelled up. I am the luckiest man on Earth. IMG_3251 The day after my Birthday I told my wife, “Hey, let’s go to this place where I was told they have Bluebonnets. We can do it after our son’s tutorial in Math.” My wife smiled saying, “Yes, we could.” We arrived at the place close to sunset, unfortunately no Bluebonnets in sight but instead we found something better… IMG_3249We found each other having a great time just laughing, sharing stories, running, playing, taking pictures, relaxing by the river, eating custard ice cream, care free with all the time to ourselves, huddled together, watching the beautiful sunset slowly descending till there was no more. It was the perfect birthday celebration. It was the perfect gift of a moment. IMG_3214“We just need several perfect moments to realize things will be okay…more than okay!” We go through life’s many stressful challenges, tragedies, trials, hardships, sufferings and persecutions. Some seem worse in others. Ours may feel worse than others. In all these, what made us make it through? Faith? Hope? Love from family and truest of friends? All of the above and more… “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the Earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes- I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!” -Job 25-27 When trouble strikes, we can claim with confidence, “Our Redeemer lives!” He does, in each one of us…and that is priceless gift we all are blessed to have. IMG_3242 What More Can I Ask? I have a beautiful wife that loves me and my son dearly. She patiently dreams with me even if so many times those dreams don’t turn exactly the way we hoped them to be. She’s been with me at my worst and celebrated with me at my best. She has my heart surrounded with all things that brings me inner happiness, peace and love that knows no conditions. She shares my many passions. We share each other’s passions. IMG_1536 I am blessed with a son with so much joy and pureness in his heart. A son who reminds me always that age is but a number and that how I feel and live my life determines how old I wanna be. He keeps me young at heart. He reminds me to never be afraid to jump into life’s many adventures. He opens my heart to goodness, forgiveness and trust no matter how many scars I endured through the years. I am a better person because of him. I try my best to be a better person because of him.

With him around, I know I will always feel "Forever Young."  For a Lego fan, Legoland is the happiest place on Earth. Every day, I would see my son play with his Star Wars Legos, creating his own customized Star Wars Clone Troopers, ships and space stations. The day we went to Legoland California, we saw Star Wars Lego City, it's one of the coolest section of the park. It was incredible! I noticed my son too was into the thrill rides. He would burst laughing after each scary ride while me and  his mom looked stunned with a look on our face saying, "What just happened?" He is growing up fast...just feel very blessed that I get to see and experience that growth with him.

With him around, I know I will always feel “Forever Young.”
For a Lego fan, Legoland is the happiest place on Earth. Every day, I would see my son play with his Star Wars Legos, creating his own customized Star Wars Clone Troopers, ships and space stations. The day we went to Legoland California, we saw Star Wars Lego City, it’s one of the coolest section of the park. It was incredible! That day, I noticed that my son was into the thrill rides too. He would burst laughing after each scary ride while me and his mom looked stunned with a look on our face saying, “What just happened?” He is growing up fast…just feel very blessed that I get to see and experience that growth with him.

My Yolified Life It started with just a simple dream for me and my wife to gain back our health. To ease the many physical ailments we’d been experiencing more and more as we got older. To perhaps be free of our dependence to prescription  and over the counter medications. To loose some excess weight and be fit enough to catch up with our growing 9-year old. Little did we know that we will have a 365 degrees turn around in our lifestyle, in the way we think, feel and live. Little did we know, that our lives will be transformed to something better, happier. Little did we know, that we will meet so many amazing, very supportive people whose lives too were transformed  and being transformed beyond their wildest dreams. People who above everything else acknowledge their blessings and dependence on God. People who come together from all over the country as one community, sharing with one another gifts of health, positivity, hope, belongingness, love and sense of purpose.

Spring Break 2015, God was truly generous. He found a way for us to go back to California, this time in San Diego. It was our first and it was amazing. We stayed at our relative's place and we felt so at home the moment they open their door to welcome us. Every moment was a beautiful blessing to cherish. So many happy memories with friends and family. So many dreams coming true and unfolding by the day. So many future possibilities happening.  While enjoying the sun, sand and surf  at a beach in Carlsbad, I asked my son, "What do you wish for?" He stopped digging the sand for a second and said, "I want to move to California."  I then asked my wife, "What do you wish for?" Smiling she whispered, "Same as yours..." It feels good to dream again. Joining Yoli and meeting new friends with so much positivity and light in them, inspired us to dream again as well as to never give up on the ones we already made. And so with faith in our hearts, we believe those dreams will happen soon.

Spring Break 2015, God was truly generous. He found a way for us to go back to California, this time in San Diego. It was our first and it was amazing. We stayed at our relative’s place and we felt so at home the moment they open their door to welcome us. Every moment was a beautiful blessing to cherish. So many happy memories with friends and family. So many dreams coming true and unfolding by the day. So many future possibilities happening.
While enjoying the sun, sand and surf at a beach in Carlsbad, I asked my son, “What do you wish for?” He stopped digging the sand for a second and said, “I want to move to California.” I then asked my wife, “What do you wish for?” Smiling she whispered, “Same as yours…”
It feels good to dream again. Joining Yoli and meeting new friends with so much positivity and light in them, inspired us to dream again as well as to never give up on the ones we already made. And so with faith in our hearts, we believe those dreams will happen soon.

It’s hard to sum up in words what a “Yolified Life” feels like but I think the video Yoli Mission: We Transform Lives gives the best description of the incredible journey my wife and I had since we both vowed to commit to change. And that same positive change we now happily see happening in the lives of our friends and family whom we share a similar passion in living a fuller, more enriching, quality life.I will not share their pictures here as I respect their privacy but will share the many inspiring health testimonies of my other family, the Yoli family in the link Real People-Real Results. The video beautifully narrates: What is Yoli? To the ancient  Aztecs it meant “To Live.” To live a life of health. A life of happiness and love. A life of giving. A life of significance and meaning. To live a life of legacy…by sharing…by caring…until every life we touch is transformed by the way we live. We transform lives, physically, emotionally, financially. This is our mission and it means everything. In 1 minute and 20 seconds, the video shows what most of us want for ourselves and the people we care about. For more information about Yoli and how it transform lives, please do click the link Yoli Better Body System Videos. We all deserve “to live a life that’s full…meaningfully full.”

Santa Monica Beach...it only took a few hours to build a lifetime of great memories.

Santa Monica Beach…it only took a few hours to build a lifetime of great memories.

When I turn 44 I will… Be more… …to  live more, love more, laugh more, pray more, give more, forgive more, seek peace and inner joy more, let go and move on more, catch as many stars and dreams more, celebrate moments and build lasting memories more, all of which I will share and take with me wherever I go.

Gliding above the San Diego zoo inside the Skyfari cable ride, we all were super excited. We all wished that the exhilarating moment didn't have to end. I took many pictures hoping to capture and relive the happiness and solitude over and over again. As I'm writing this, I am taken back on the day that we rode the zoo's double deck bus, the male Polar bear dancing by the lagoon trying to impress his girlfriend, the adorable Giant Pandas chewing the bamboo leaves, the flamingos irresistibly funny as they chat among themselves, the lion taking his afternoon nap, he must be so tired that he slept next to his poop..."eew," said my son as he pointed to the huge poop.

Gliding above the San Diego zoo inside the Skyfari cable ride, we all were super excited. We all wished that the exhilarating moment didn’t have to end. I took many pictures hoping to capture and relive the happiness and solitude over and over again. As I’m writing this, I am taken back on the day that we rode the zoo’s double deck bus, the male Polar bear dancing by the lagoon trying to impress his girlfriend, the adorable Giant Pandas chewing the bamboo leaves, the flamingos irresistibly funny as they chat at their cocktail party, my son asking me to take his video with the Mountain Lion so he can say, “It’s real!” I find myself smiling, elated, kind of what it felt like when I was having my great adventure at the San Diego Zoo with my family.

A friend sent me a message on my Birthday. She wrote, “I’m sure this is your best birthday ever because you found inner peace and happiness. Since late last year, our family decided to celebrate each other, friends and family who matter. We have joy and inner peace knowing that we are leaving behind the negativity and ugliness of the past years. This is leading us to a renewed life with Christ, making us grow in Christ. Life is indeed beautiful in Christ.” She was so right. God bless you all. Truly, truly thankful…and sharing with you one slice of cake with one Birthday candle of happy wishes! IMG_3453 From our family to yours bringing to you lasting symbols of peace, love and a happy home…

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Rodeo Houston, Big In The Heart Of Texans

How big is Rodeo Houston in the hearts of Texans? More than 2 million yearly attendees big!

Today, we’re taking out those old dusty cowboy boots and have an all-day fun time at Rodeo Houston 2015. Yes, I will take you all with me. All who wants to go shout, “Hiyah!”

Let’s begin with a 58 feet ascent above the ground. Slowly we will glide along the 1,700-foot gondola Sky Ride across the park. Scared of heights? Me too, but believe me, it has the best thrilling aerial view. It’s so worth it. Just don’t look down.  I said don’t look down…

IMG_1105It was close to sunset when we rode the Sky Ride. I tried not to look down but I can’t help myself.  My son kept saying nervously, “Dad, dad, stop doing that,”  referring to my arm movements as I took our group selfie pictures. He didn’t notice that my hands were shaking as I was just as nervous as he was.  Taking pictures helped me not dwell on my fear of heights. My wife was wise to close her eyes, between our picture-taking. Overall, we all had an amazing time.

IMG_1050Okay my friend, you can now open your eyes and breathe. We just landed on the ground in one piece. Yeah!

Rodeo Houston is not complete without the carnival.  I’ll buy us some tickets then we’ll play the water blaster race. Everyone ready? Congratulations! You just won a Minion stuffed toy.

IMG_1106Hey look, the band is playing, Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson featuring one of today’s coolest artist, Bruno Mars. While dancing and grooving, let me buy us some turkey legs, corn dogs and funnel cake.

My, we all are hungry. The turkey leg didn’t stand a chance.

IMG_1087Okay, it’s time for some rodeo adrenaline action. Did I forget to mention we’re going back riding the Sky Ride again? Yipee!

Brrr…so cold!

IMG_1107Bareback Riding, Bull Riding, Chuck Wagon Races and Calf Scramble, these are just some of the exciting rodeo events that will sure have us cheering for more.

IMG_1110For my last treat of the night, everybody gets a free seat at John Legend’s concert. Everyone, as the stadium turns off all its lights and the concert’s finale song, All Of Me begins, turn on your smart camera phone’s flashlight, raise it high up in the air, sway with the beat as we all sing,

‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you
You’re my end and my beginning
Even when I lose I’m winning
Cause I give you all of me
And you give me all of you, oh…

Blogger friends, Spring is here and though I’d been out of the loop recently, like way, way out of the loop, you all are always in my travels, thoughts and prayers. I wish you all new happy beginnings, of renewed hope, comfort and healing. As Easter comes to a close, I wish you all too gifts of faith and overflowing blessings. God bless.

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