“Keep going, keep growing”

The time really goes so fast
We can still remember all the years
His first words that gave us cheers
The first time he crawls and walks
The first time he rode his bicycle
His first day of school with a big bag
Karate, music, choir, kung-fu, guitar
When we reminisce them they bring tears

From primary years to senior years
He was showing some independence
Lots of friends, loves Maths and Science
Learns to drive, happy to have his license
Friends stayed overnight and had fun
Activities in school, soon time to leave
To another country to have his degree
We surely miss him but we had to let him go


The Butterfly. Many summers ago, when HRH the son was around 5, we went to the Roundway Park in Leeds. They had a butterfly garden there. HRH the son was fascinated by the butterflies, running after them, trying to catch them. We told him that if he kept still, some butterflies might be attracted to him and would come to him. That wasn’t easy for a boy to keep still, but he did. After some time, he saw a yellow and red butterfly sleeping in one of the leaves. He watched it with interest and patience. I’d never forget his excitement when he saw that it was waking up and started fluttering up and down the garden.

pretty butterfly
wings beating the summer air
frail and delicate

HRH the son has always been proud of where he came from, i.e. his Dad being British and me being a Filipina. On his 23rd birthday, our present to him was to have a DNA test which could tell him exactly his roots. OK, the Britishness and Filipino-ess are obvious. He also found some percentages of being Spanish, Polynesian, Malay, Chinese (from my side), as well as Lithuanian, Scandinavian, Irish, Viking, south European (from Him Indoors’ side). He was really amazed knowing his roots!


HRH the son found his beautiful K and they got married in May (six years ago) in the UK

They also got married in India in August. All the best, our loves!

melody from heart
till dawn when nature smiles
birds fly in the sky
courtship song at night
wondering when dawn will come
new hope for the day
like an oil painting
out of the charcoal curtain
perfect dawn emerge
hand in hand they walk

I think I thrive under pressure and will try to do my best to achieve what I have to do. I usually plan what I have to do and normally will finish it before the deadline, so that I could go over it and change or edit it, if needed.

Life is like being in a seesaw
Or it’s puzzling as a jigsaw
When you’re up, he’s down
He has to wait for the countdown
When you’re down, he’s up
Sometimes causing a breakup
Never at the same time, though
Such a shame, what a blow
Or could be like being in a swing
A lot of times, life could be baffling
Where we can suspend ourselves
Feeling greater than our real selves
And we can soar higher and higher
As we become bolder and bolder
But then we’ve got to come down
When blows are continually knockdown
Zip-lining, that’s another exciting thing
Bursting with joy, life could be blasting
Or going down the waterfall, that’s cool
Such sensation, it’s overcool and water-cool
Especially when the water glistens like diamond
Great feeling when we’ve been championed
The power to do something even though it’s tough
Tired laughter escaped with a huff and a puff
Not into details but we all do it from time to time
When we are inspired especially in summertime
We face life’s challenges or barriers full on
And when we’ve done it, it’s quite a phenomenon

One of the earliest memories I had was the time when my sister was born. I was three, my big brother was four and we were waiting in the other room, my father was pacing up and down. Until we heard the midwife (my aunt) said: “it’s a girl!” We all rushed in the room, we saw some blood and the baby crying and my mom was on the floor. My aunt told us to “go away, we’re not ready yet.”

My sister was born
My brother and I waited
Then we heard her cry

Then, we had to move house. I must be seven, my brother, eight and little sister, three. The new house wasn’t far from the old one and I remembered being put on top of all our things in a cart and Dad and other uncles pushed the cart. That was nice, as we waved goodbye to our old neighbours and saw people on the streets on our way to the new house. My brother said not to move that much, as we might fall off. We first entered the house with a bag of rice and salt. My cousins welcomed us and they were to be our new neighbours.

On top of a cart
As we moved to our new house
Cousins welcomed us

Another memory was when our youngest brother was born, I was ten by this time and when we saw him, I thought he was the most gorgeous baby in the world. He had this massive black hair and his skin was all red, his eyes sparkling like diamonds, probably from crying. We knew we’ve got to spoil this kid.

Gorgeous baby
Eyes sparkling like diamonds
Our youngest brother

Geneva the city with its lake

The mountains and my independence

Flew my wings and here I was awake

The first time I drifted from home

Tried to settle while I roam

Composed myself for my sake

Rippling water I glided for my entrance

Geneva the city with its lake

Trial and error while building my nest

Met a guy who would have guessed

Fell in love, didn’t know he was a snake

Broke my heart for he was a menace

Flew my wings and here I was awake

And so I keep on learning

New job, new language, new friends

Learned to skate and bake a cake

Found a job that was stupendous

Geneva the city with its lake

The little town that’s so peaceful

Where I first saw snow

Near and far I have to take

For my sins I need penance

Flew my wings and here I was awake

The arc of life for my keepsake

Love Geneva for its essence

Geneva the city with its lake

Flew my wings and here I was awake*

*The Grá Reformata

A simple pattern of success
Spread on my wall all of these
Climb to the edge even with stress
Some photographs and memories

The path with stones and gravel
On the way there some tight squeeze
Low and humble but cheerful
Some photographs and memories

Trim the grass, spray some water
Good for the plants and all the trees
Tie some knots, the world is closer
Some photographs and memories**


I left the Philippines and have ventured in different things in different countries. I first went to Switzerland and became a Secretary to the Ambassador of Ethiopia. Then I did some laboratory training in BASF Company in Ludwigshafen, Germany. That’s where I met Him Indoors. I also worked in California, USA as a Cashier and in Nottingham, UK as an Assistant Statistician in their Research Department. I finished my Masters in the UK and I was a freelance Business English trainer in Munich for twenty years. Now I’m happily retired. I love adventure – swimming, blogging, snorkelling, zip-lining, animal safari, horse riding and travelling to different countries.

Our first year anniversary
We were still students
And we were starving students
So we booked a cheap hovercraft
That was one spring in Paris
Lived on baguette, wine and cheese
Walked along the River Seine
Hand in hand, waited for the sunset

Went to Musee d’Orsay, we loved it
All the paintings of Monet, Manet, Renoir
Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” and Renoir’s “Bal..”
Spent a lot of time at the garden of Rodin
Sat and contemplated with “The Thinker”
It was a sunny day and we had fun
Climbed up the Eifel Tower, what a view
“We’ll always have Paris,” we promised

I love you and that’s the key
And as long as you love me

You make my life so wonderful
Don’t care where you’re from, we’re blissful

Doesn’t matter ‘bout your history
We get on fine and you make me glee

I’m sure we can face the world together
I’m so happy with you, you’re a dazzler

With you, we can explore and challenge, for sure
And there’s such a thing as a forevermore

I have known you for a long time
Through thick and thin we’re together
We’ve been working out the answer

More seas to swim, mountains to climb
More adventures and challenges
More photos to take, more kisses

Cooking with rosemary and thyme
Lots of curries and stir-fries
Together with our lows and highs

The warm breeze whispers through the chimes
Such a melody we produce
When we fight, we’ve got to have truce

We fight but make up at teatime
One shouts, the other one listens
Life’s not perfect but we have fun

I’ve crafted my own home and life
A good daughter, sister and wife
Studied hard, full of ambition
But I also have lots of fun
Left the Philippines, saw the world
Lots of experience, swirled and whirled
Different jobs, different challenges
All these things giving me a buzz
Sometimes luck is not on my way
Sometimes no sun, the world is grey
But I carried on, full of hope
Tried something else, no need to mope
No tradition, no convention
Swim the ocean, climb the mountain
Whatever I do, my own voice
Always my way, always my choice

I see hope from afar
I can smell the roses
Cycling at the weekend
No fret no bother, too
Where I can pray and mend

I see hope from afar
And looping with the wind
Imagine to be free
Not swatting in the hole
Where I’ll be full of glee

I see hope from afar
The pink glow of sunset
Where trees sway and birds fly
Wife baking bread for kids
Dad brought sauce for the pie

I see hope from afar
Green fields where children play
Distant snow covered hills
Where winter is nearing
Christmas with all the frills***

*** Monchielle

54 New Day Quotes to Treat Each Day as a New Beginning

One more day to illuminate
Me on the priorities of life
I don’t want to be a dead weight
And I don’t want any strife

One more day to storm
The challenges and hindrances
I’m sure I could still perform
What’s all this fuzz?

One more day to pool
Resources for the common good
I don’t want to be cruel
With the frosty weather I withstood

One more day to create
Significant impact on you
I need you, I tell it straight
Before I say adieu

One more day to haunt
Me with the scenes of our lives
I have no wealth to flaunt
We’ll see each in our afterlives

One more day to need
One last kiss before I’m lifeless
My very last good deed
Before I spin the axis

One more day to pay
The price of my sins
There must be some way
To play the violins

For: https://alwayswrite.blog/2023/05/03/wq-18-growing-is-not-optional/, https://annetterochelleaben.wordpress.com/2023/05/04/thankful-thursday-may-4-2023/

Thanks for letting us grow.

8 responses

  1. Marsha

    Wow, Lady Lee, Each post is a more complete view of the complicated person that is you. How amazing to capture all of these diverse parts of you into one post. Thanks for sharing. This one is a keepsake for you and your family!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ladyleemanila

      awwww thanks, Marsha 🙂 they are mostly from my archive… fun putting them together… have a lovely weekend Marsha ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Marsha

        You too, Lady Lee.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Annette Rochelle Aben

    Grow on, girlfriend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ladyleemanila

      I will, Annette 🙂 thank you ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Sadje

    You’ve lived a remarkable and adventurous life Lee. Love how your family has embraced so many different cultures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ladyleemanila

      thank you, Sadje 🙂 have a great week ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje

        Thanks Lee.

        Liked by 1 person

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