Saturday, December 31, 2005


One year. 12 months. 52 weeks. 365 days. 8760 hours. 525,600 minutes (I actually calculated it). In 3 hours and 9 minutes, we’ll be done with another cycle of time and it’ll be 2006!!! I have an affinity for even numbered years, I don’t know why. Actually, I have an affinity for even numbered everything! Ha ha ha! It’s the mild case of OCD in me, what can I say? Maybe that’s why I’m waiting for this year to end.

Don’t worry. I don’t plan to spend the next paragraph counting down the number of lessons I’ve learned this year, because I’ve learned just one really big one. I learned how to keep myself from being stressed out, neurotic. I’ve learned to accept a lot of things in my life, reach a bit of serenity and I hope that it stays this way.

There’s no need to dwell on the past year because, well, it’s passed. With this I leave you all with a final thought…

“The object of a new year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul.”
~ G.K. Chesterton


Thursday, December 29, 2005


Christmas, for me, didn’t come when it usually does. As you all know (since I bitch-blogged it twice), this holiday began very beige for me this year; lackluster at best. Something was just not clicking. The shopping was often stressful and mundane, the Christmas card writing cramped my wrist barely 4 letters into my address book and the spirit of the holiday that we’re told to feel was not much more than a light mist creating a heavy dew that I knew I’d have to clean off my windshield the next morning. When I awoke on December 23rd, all I longed for was normalcy; that is, MY TRUE LIFE minus bows, candy canes and crowded malls threatening not only my credit but the little patience I had left. Living across the street from the Glendale Galleria, trying to get out of my driveway without cursing the unusual barrage of traffic on my street was quite the difficult task. My only revenge came in the form of yellow parking tickets tucked ever so kindly under each windshield wiper. It says NO PARKING on this side of the street dude! Anyhow, in the next few days, that spirit I’d been so lacking possessed me, and possessed me wholeheartedly.

On my first day of Christmas, my true life gave to me…A PARTY AND A PEAR TREE! Just kidding, no pear tree. I did get to party though. James, with his parentals in the Philippines, had a Christmas Eve-Eve gathering, complete with a potluck dinner from host and attendees, PLUS entertainment by a little known duo (namely he and Eric). I left much earlier than everyone else because I had to get up early for Misa de Gallo the next morning (Mass at 5 am! Mom and dad sang in the choir!), but not before I got my chance on the magic mic with Jaja where we scored a 100 with our version of “Please Be Careful With My Heart!” HELL YEAH! YOU AND ME JA! Hahaha…

On my second day of Christmas, my true life gave to me…80 FAMILY MEMBERS (mas o menos)…In lieu of our annual Christmas day festivities at Lolo Lando and Lola Ellen’s house in Palmdale/Lancaster, the Gondas decided that this year, we’d forego the house gathering and have a lunch buffet at the Sportsman’s Lodge in North Hollywood. Complete with DJ (my cousin, Joey) and program, the 5 hours we got to spend together on Christmas Eve-Day was no less satisfying than our typical Christmas Day celebrations of years past. After hours of scrounging through albums and cd’s of old and new photos, in addition to Tin’s PowerPoint expertise, our slideshow was a success and our family was treated to, pardon the cliché, a walk down memory lane; weddings, birthdays and so many gatherings we can’t even begin to remember the reasons for. We ended with a medley of Tagalog Christmas songs and, as corny as I know it sounds, it was one of my favorite moments. Singing carols isn’t a popular activity in my family, but something was very heartwarming about the impromptu guitar-strumming and song-leading.

After the party, we went to a Christmas vigil mass where our whole row fought to keep our eyes open and our heads in an upright position as the tiring day began to catch up with us. Why was that homily sooooo long? Ha ha…No matter, because although we were soaked in fatigue, something about singing “Angels We Have Heard On High” and “Silent Night” rejuvenated our Christmas energy and we opened presents that night with joyful glee to match.

For just a few hours that Christmas eve, we as a family set aside our problems and reveled in each other’s love and support. I couldn’t think of any other way to celebrate a most sacred season.

On my third day of Christmas, my true life gave to me…A HOUSE OF LOVING VOICES…I spent most of the day going through all the pictures from the day before, in addition to cleaning up our chaotic room. That evening, however, not wanting to spend Christmas Day at home, we visited my aunt and uncle in Long Beach. Their house was FULL of their kids (my cousins) and THEIR kids (my nieces and nephews) and, well, let’s just say that the Bautista side, in comparison to the Gondas are less…tame. The volume of Bautista voices, especially in that house, is WOW. I can’t wait for our reunion in July!

On my fourth day of Christmas, my true life gave to me…4 FRIENDS I’VE MISSED…Instead of racking our brains for gift ideas, Cile, Iya, Rochelle and I decided that we’d just spend the day together – and wow did we ever! At noon, on the day after Christmas, the girls and I treated ourselves to an afternoon at Burke Williams Spa where we got massages and enjoyed the amenities available to patrons. Such amenities included a 160-degree sauna where we hung out after our massages to catch up on our lives (aka catch up on OTHER people’s lives, ha ha) as we sweated calories away. After the sauna we thought we’d check out the steam room, thinking that it’d just be a box of mist for us to sit in. But after having sat down for about 10 seconds, the room began to re-steam with this loud hissing sound, and, sitting in the stifling fog with ZERO visibility, we suddenly heard screaming. It was Rochelle! She was sitting right next to where the steam was coming out of! Freakin’ hilarious! We had ice cold towels on our faces but it was just way too hot in there and we left laughing our butts off! That wasn’t even the most amusing part of our day there. Chicks are walked around the spa baring all and the four of us, protected under our bathrobes, couldn’t help but look away, look at each other and then giggle every time a pair of boobs walked by. No inhibitions here!

After a few hours at the spa, we had lunch at the Grove’s Cheesecake Factory, where we flirted mercilessly with our young waiter, Zack (who reminded me of Michael J. Fox.), and feasted galore. Having burned calories walking up and down the row of shops, we headed to Coffee Bean then proceeded to Rochelle’s house where we watched TV, ate our leftovers, ordered pizza and caught up some more on each other’s lives. We talked and talked and talked, listening to dilemmas and laughing at each one’s anecdotal value, giving advice or egging each other on. It was so much fun!

I wish such days would run like a cycle in my life. It makes me want to wish that everyday were just like Christmas…

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Apparently, the sweater wasn't enough...HAHAHA!!!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

The Merriest Christmas Blessings to Everyone!

Friday, December 23, 2005


So for the last few weeks, I've been a real Ebenezer Scrooge/Grinch, for a number of reasons. First, not having much to spend on gifts, then getting into that accident, then getting so sick I couldn't stand or sit up, then trying to finish a slideshow (which was not an easy task since I'm not, well, Cile. he he…); I was just feeling really blah about everything. It sucked because for as long as I can remember, Christmas was always something I looked forward to.

A melancholy holiday it has been for me, though, chanting the first section of Faith Hills's "Where Are You Christmas?" in my head:

Where are you Christmas? Why can't I find you?
Why have you gone away?
Where is the laughter you used to bring me?
Why can't I hear music play?

My world is changing. I'm rearranging
Does that mean Christmas changes too?

Where are you Christmas?
Do you remember the one you used to know?
I'm not the same one
See what the time's done
Is that why you have let me go?

…instead of *NSYNC's Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays: “It’s a wonderful feeling. Feel the love in the room from the floor to the ceiling. It’s that time of year. Christmastime is here.” What bothers me is that feeling this way during this time of year is something I'm not used to. I've always loved writing Christmas cards to people who I don't get the chance to speak with often, or shopping for and then wrapping gifts; from sweaters to packets of holiday candy enveloped in bright colors of red, green, silver and gold foil. As simple-minded as it sounds, Christmas really was the most wonderful time of the year for me. That magic that fills the air during this season, I felt that from Thanksgiving Day until January 1st. This year has been more difficult though. I've been pouting and crying (much to Santa's dismay I'm sure), lethargic and passive, waiting for the year to end so I can start over.

But, as usual, some "things" came just in time to help me get over myself. These "light bulb moments," as I like to call them, appeared and affected me in many ways. The one that broke through most effectively, however, came in the form of a Tuesday night homily. Our priest reminded us about Mary's story; how, when the angel Gabriel appeared and told her that she would essentially be the MOTHER of all mothers, Mary said nothing more than, "I am the handmaid of the Lord. Be it done to me according to God's word." And then I remembered something I blogged about a few years back, about having faith that things happen for reasons that at the time of encounter are often unbeknownst to us; and though it sucks not knowing the hows and whys of it all, the best way to “get a handle” on things, is just to believe that you’ll be okay no matter what happens.

Faith is what Christmas is all about. Faith in knowing that a great king would not arrive in a glitzy caravan of trumpet sounds and the roar of the crowd, but be born in a manger, swaddled in the love of his young mother and carpenter father. Faith in seeing the hope inside the despair, finding the greatness through the bleak, rediscovering the innocence of a child through the hardheadedness of an adult.

May faith keep us all...

(Wow…that wasn't meant to be so long. I thought I'd mention also that the other thing that snapped me out of my bah-humbug was seeing Edwin's dog, Tyson, in a crocheted holiday sweater. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!)
(Andrew and Chris look! It's Monica's biggest pet peeve). HAHAHA!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Thursday, December 15, 2005


I'm at home today, feeling kinda crappy. After sitting in the living room trying to sit up to finish my christmas cards, I realized that I have a slideshow to take care of! So Here I am scanning like a maniac! And though that dumb accident put me in a bit of a mood (a bad one), I've been trying to get past it because what's done is done and there are other things I can put my time and energy this slideshow.

Pictures - I LOVE THEM! What can I say? Looking through photos, old and new, never fail to make me feel all better. light of that, I found a few that made me laugh...ENJOY! (Matt, don't kill me!...FYI - that halloween picture, that Snoopy mask I'm wearing goes with Matt's costume but he wanted to be Robin! HAHAHA! Dorks!)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


I haven't really been feeling the holiday cheer lately. I used to be ready for Christmas the very day after Thanksgiving, blasting my *NSYNC Home for Christmas cd the moment I woke up, awaiting the moment I could drag our fake Christmas tree and all the glitter and glow of garlands and ornaments out of our basement storage and into our living room. But this year, though fortune has smiled of late in the form of self-discovery and opportunity, I have yet to wrap one present and the thought of rummaging through an address book to write out holiday cards makes me want to shut the blinds, turn off the lights and stay in bed waiting for 2006 to come around.

Tonight's event hasn't done much to revive my spirit. After having dinner with Fernand in celebration of our last day of class, I was backing out of my parking space when this car came out of nowhere and met door to spare tire with my car. The girl, crying, angry and obviously in a bit of a shock was not forgiving, yelling, "What the hell are you doing! Didn't you see me coming?! Oh God my new car!" With a final in half an hour, there was not much I could do to let her know how sorry I sorry I was she didn't see ME COMING OUT OF THE PARKING SPACE! Thank goodness Fernand was there to give me re-assurance and thank God for this girl's friend who could've been a real ass but wasn't. We exchanged information, then Fernand and I drove to class, and now here I am in the school computer lab writing out my frustration because after calling my insurance company tonight to report the accident, I'd rather just not talk about it.

There's a million and one things to let my mind wander about, but I'll try not to and will most likely get through with prayer. I was just WAITING for something bad to happen, as life has actually been kind to me these days. This is a test, I know it, to see if my level of trust in this world and in that which lies ahead of me is a sign of my growing faith, or a way to fake my way into accepting what comes my way.

Oh boy...what a bah humbug way to end the semester.

Monday, December 12, 2005


Every Christmas season we’re bombarded with not only commercial “obligations” but altruistic ones as well. We’re thwarted with so many advertisements of the latest electronics, fashion and food that it’s difficult to avoid holiday gluttony of every form. However, with the sound of merry registers a-beeping and jolly credit cards a-swiping, there’s also the sound of charities and kind citizens from all around a-pleaing for the spread of good will towards men.

Simple acts such as propping a door open for a stranger with a handful of shopping bags at the mall or letting someone cut in front of you on the freeway are just a few of the ways we can demonstrate this season of giving. Donating food, clothes, funds – or moreover TIME to help those who are not as fortunate as others takes that simple intent of giving to the next level. Bright paper packages tied up with string aside, Christmas is supposed to exude a form of enhanced love, if you will, for humankind as exemplified by the story of Christ’s birth; not only by the elves working year round to make gifts for Santa’s forthcoming night of dotage. “Love Your Neighbor As Yourself” – that is the greatest commandment of all.

There are times, however, when loving your neighbor as yourself leaves you wanting to key your own car or punch yourself in the face. It makes me ill sometimes when the gift of giving, in ANY form – via words or actions – is received by nothing less than indifference, or worse, contempt.

“It’s Christmas, what’s bugging Anna?” you might be asking. Well, someone called in today and I didn’t appreciate being reprimanded or hung up on after trying for 10 minutes to help him out. I hate when I encounter such reactions. It made me want to shove that holiday goodwill down his throat. But then I remembered another important part of loving your neighbor – forgiving them.
Happy Birthday to my cousin, Melissa!

Friday, December 09, 2005


Today was the feast of the Immaculate Conception. A holy day of obligation, it's the day Catholics commemorate the beginning of Mary's life. Her birth was a miracle to her mother, St. Anne, who, despite getting on in years, kept faith that God would bless her with a child. A child she was given, Mary, who was the only one ever born without original sin. At the risk of going off on a tangent, I'm gonna stop the religion lesson here and talk about my mass experience tonight.

I couldn't make the 5:30 pm mass because I had to pick up my sister from school and then drop her and my mom off at home. By the time I get to mass, I will have missed the readings, the homily and would've been unable to take communion so I'm like why bother? So I decided to attend the 7 pm mass...EN ESPANOL.I understood, for the most part, what was going on because it's still mass, just wasn't conducted in English. I was kind of sad, though, because (I know Larnie can share my feelings on this) I love singing in church. Yes I love singing in the shower and in my car, but when I sing in church, I feel like there's a purpose, a true audience, THE ONE AUDIENCE. Anyhow, I only know ONE church song in Spanish called, "O Maria, Madre Mia" which we learned in elementary school. The whole mass I was like, if they play that song, I'll freakin' laugh.

Communion comes around and what do they start singing? O MARIA, MADRE MIA! I laughed from my pew until right before I got to the altar. I can't believe they actually sang it! Hahahaha...Too bad I only remember the first two lines of that song! Booo!


Monday, December 05, 2005


Lots to catch-blog about, but first this.

I had a dream last night and when I woke up this morning, I felt like I had had that dream before. I didn't have the exact same dream, but something happened in this dream that has happend in NUMEROUS other visions in slumber.

I'm driving (on the freeway, on the street, in open country) and it's nighttime. I'm sleepy and can't seem to keep my eyes open. I struggle to lift my lids but am completely unable to. I want to pull over but can't because I can't see a damn thing.

There is a dark, strange fear that is literally clutching at my very heart and it's keeping me from opening my eyes, from pulling over. I just keep thinking to myself in the dream how I'm going to crash into something and die. It's as if this fear that I feel is what's keeping me from opening my eyes or pulling over.

WHAT THE HECK DOES THIS MEAN? If it, indeed, does mean something. I just think it's strange that I've dreamt this same incident a myriad of times in a myriad of circumstances, yet it never fails to turn into that...crashing and dying.


I feel all crappy right now. Sunday was completely unproductive for me, even though I have a final paper to revise. I had such a great day on Friday, something I haven't experienced in QUITE THE LONG TIME. I had gotten so used to the genuine-happiness drought that I didn't know what to do with myself when this weird thing we know as giddiness crept up on me the way it did. Nothing huge happened, really, except the beginning of what I hope to be a turning of the tides. I also got the results of my analytical writing section from the GREs and I didn't do as horribly as I thought. THANKS LORD!

Yeah, it's almost 2 am. I'm blogging cuz I can't sleep. I can't sleep cuz I can't breathe, my head is aching and my chest is all congested. No matter what position I am in bed, I feel uncomfortable. I hate being sick. My dumb sister contaminated this house with all her sick germs last week. THANKS A LOT TIN! She's all better now and I'm feeling all BLECH! Should I go to work?...We'll see....

Friday, December 02, 2005


Search Results for Registered Nurses and Continuing Education Providers

Type: RN
Number: 670134