Age 57 and counting…bucket list?

new-doc-34_1At age 57 and beyond… Do I still have a bucket list?   You bet!

I have plenty of it! A bucket of fats… extra kilo 🙂  a bucket of wrinkles and bulge…kidding aside:-) yeah of course, I still have things I haven’t done and would love to try to… things that I have done and would like to do it all over again.

I guess all I have done since I got married, have children and got separated …is a bucket list of how to survive for all of them,support them in any way I can, caring and loving them more than myself.

Well, I guess it’s about time to remember my bucket list for myself before I even forgot I have a list too!

Love  Oh yeah! that’s the top on my list. I have given so much that I forgot how it is being in love. Sure, my sons will always be there but I know sooner or later they will also have their own family, their own love .I would like to find someone who would inspire me to get out of the bed with a smile on my lips, start the day right and energized.I would like to have someone who can make me laugh and not cry.I like to find someone who appreciates my value in his life, who would take an extra minute to listen to my boring stories and to take me to a movie (no matter how boring it is) to a dance (even though he doesn’t know how) in short, I would like to find someone who love the way I do.Call me crazy ! (with my eyes rolling up high) And one day ,I would also  like to hold his hand, look into his eyes and take our vow, no promises of extravagance just a simple life of togetherness and love, in sickness or in health, Alzheimer or  not, till the sun rises and set…wow! I am really into this 🙂

mi2016alright let’s move on…

Travel If I have a chance I would like to see “The great pyramid of Giza” the only one surviving from the seven wonder of the Ancient world. Next is to visit the new seven wonders of the modern world.I had the chance to visit Petra in Jordan, so I have five left. The great wall of china, the colosseum of Rome ,Chitchen Itza of Mexico,Macchu Picchu of Peru,Taj Mahal of India and the Christ Redeemer of Brazil. And I also would like to go back to Paris and more 🙂 you know if you’re putting something on the bucket list, make it grand! at least there are choices and it doesn’t hurt if u can travel to one or two. It’s a blessing!

Learn an instrument I enjoyed listening to music, watch live orchestra or musical concert and it is my dream to learn how to play piano or violin. I know someday I gonna do it.

Self publish a book I would like to publish my own memo, though I am sharing my experiences on my blog, there are a lot more to explore like how and why I am still here in Saudi Arabia? or then and now of living in Saudi Arabia or who knows? my own love story (the rise and fall) really? let’s see 🙂

Learn how to swim Yeah! I only knew how to float but not to really swim. I love to go to the beach , who doesn’t? but can’t really explore because I am scared to drown. I also want to learn how to snorkel and even scuba diving. wow! I see your eyebrow is up!

Learn how to drive everyone knew, women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia, so there’s always from the back of my mind, I wish I can drive so I can go to places without being at the mercy of unruly drivers.

There are more things I would love to explore but I’ll reserve it when I am sixty 🙂

Ladies, I think if you feel like doing something different or learn new things, this is NOW, children are already grown up, chasing their own dream…don’t just sit there because you feel old, be a part of the now generation, be young in mind and spirit.Continue to be an inspiration,be active and you will find a new breath of life.

So, what am I doing on my birthday? snooze! Z Z Z Z Z Z  two thumbs up!

next blog pls! the bday dinner 🙂




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Celebrating Dual Citizen ; “Hot pot” Jeddah Style

Strawberry Cheesecake
Strawberry Cheesecake

When I greeted my bro Kelly ” A happy 60th birthday ” he told me he is celebrating with a dual citizen!

huh? dual?

YEp! Filipino Citizen and Senior  Citizen 🙂

When you hit the big SIX “O” (60 yrs old), you got a card of senior citizen and a tag of twenty percent discount to selected airlines , restaurant and a free bus pass too!


celebrating with a trademark "Kelly" moustache :-)
celebrating with a trademark “Kelly” moustache 🙂

We decided to celebrate his bday with a “hot-pot ” lunch at home. Hot pot is basically a mixed of East Asian stew, simmering at the centre of the dining table; the ingredients like meat, shrimp,fish and different kind of vegetables are cooked at the table. The ultimate dining experience where you can smell the aroma of the spices, your eyes glued on the food, and once it hit your palate, savouring the flavour and the freshness, yum! then suddenly you grab a tissue to wipe your perspiration 🙂 either from the hot spices or from the steam of the hot-pot 🙂 whatever it is..we fill and feel the happiness of our belly.

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hot pot Jeddah Style
hot pot Jeddah Style

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I also made “lumpiang sariwa ” (fresh vegetable spring rolls) with homemade egg roll wrapper. We supposed to eat this while waiting for the hot pot but it seemed everyone was just to hungry and we dig in almost at one time 🙂

Fresh spring rolls
Fresh spring rolls

After four years, I will also be celebrating my own 60th bday! yay 🙂 I wonder what kind of celebration would it be? for sure there will be another menu on the table, who knows, I might be sitting at a restaurant manage by my nomadic Chef Kevin , lovely thought!

And for my bff’s Thank you for coming!

thank you for coming!
thank you for coming!
my sis "bunso"
my sis “bunso”
cutting of the cake
cutting of the cake
the real bunso Ashley with Kelly
the real bunso Ashley with Kelly

For you my bro Kelly, may you have more birthdays to come, stay healthy and young at heart 🙂

WE love you!



Late post at 55


I know, my birthday was last week and I just turned fifty-five.. so this is the start of a life that’s full of excitement or forgetfulness ? hahaha well, I didn’t forget to post this but I got caught up with a busy schedule and celebrations!

It was a wonderful feeling to have friends who insisted to celebrate my bday (take note..I didn’t spend any halala) and it didn’t end up with one celebration but three! I’m a lucky lady!

First, joy-riding Jeddah ;-0 huh! touristic celebration ..we ended up having a drink and pizza at marina.The breezy night and the ambience made the feeling more wonderful.

nope, i didn't ride in  ;-)
nope, I didn’t ride in 😉

2nd celebration – Friday barbecue courtesy of my friends once again. Without a family on my side, so happy to have my friends around. Thank you Lord!

2014-10-24 at 17-50-23

Psst… no pictures got uploaded at their own request hehehe everyone was working to the max! No time to do make up for photo shoot 😉 So here’s some of the food we ready on my bday (2nd day)

3rd celebration: at work, with my consultant and staffs. Of course I baked my cheesecake 🙂

basbousa cheesecake
basbousa cheesecake
basbousa with cream cheese
basbousa with cream cheese

a simple celebration at work with beautiful people who I work with for many years. what a day!

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and my bff came in the morning too!

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followed by my most charming and beautiful FA friend. Thank you for the baked mac!! yummy 😉


and lastly, the night ended with more beautiful people inside -out..You all made my bday complete!!! Thank you so much!



” One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood ”

– Lucius Annaues Seneca

Thank you so much my friends.

and at midnight receiving a call from my sons and read this message:

Thanks for everything. Thanks for being a great parent no matter how rebellious i become. I like to believe that your level of understanding is better than anyone. Your wisdom matches no other. Even my own. My “smart know it all” version. You have carried kuya and i’s dreams so far. I just wanted to let you know on this special day that. Youve known that i always hated the idea of looking up to someone. But i would like to let u know that you have set the example so high there is no one else other than you to look up to. I was never great at getting gifts for you so yea.
Thanks for all the love and support. Even on your birthday i can only remember all the great gifts you have given me.
I know i don’t show it much but thanks for being a great parent/friend. I hope all the people you have cared for through these years have given you one amazing day.
Happy birthday and much love to you.—–

You bet..welling up till much happiness and blessings. Thank you Lord.



Age 39…43…54…60 and more… who’s counting?

Year is ending so as our age is increasing, so far we celebrated 4 birthdays in a row and two more are coming. Who’s counting anyway? Does it matter if you are 30’s…40’s…60’s?

First celebration…to feel young and look young, we decided to change the colour of our hair and get some new hairstyle.

What else to do after pampering yourself? of course, celebrate with the family and friends.

nothing is more enjoyable than to eat rice and fish 🙂

2nd celebration

3rd celebration

brunch surprise!
brunch surprise!

4th celebration

barbecue at the poolside
barbecue at the poolside

and more are coming next week end…age are only numbers, we continue to count and enjoy the blessings.

God bless,


Roar and thoughts at 54

hello 54
hello 54

Back from hiatus of self-imposed seclusion! Wondering what’s happening around? The crackdown of illegal immigrants in Saudi Arabia,new rules in medical licensing and most of all, the super typhoon in Philippines in particular, having dreaded thoughts…what about if it was our island in the province of Catanduanes? Probably, the island with the entire population will disappear completely, Oh my! 🙁

My heart goes out with the victims of Typhoon ” Yolanda”. The aftermath was disastrous and yet I saw in pictures the smiling faces of children, playing amidst the background of destructions and the adult as well, having good time watching the fight between Pacquiao and Rios. Their life goes on, surely the recovery will be slow and hard but as the saying goes… When there’s life, there’s hope and when there’s hope, coupled with will and determination, the journey is as gratifying as fulfilling when you get to your destination.

And with this thought, I have asked myself what are the things I learned after four years beyond fifty?


Well, beautybeyondfifty continues to roar, no matter how my belly button goes out of my pants, I will continue my gym work out every day. Though I gained weight, who cares? as long as I can move,dance and flex my muscles (muscles? do I have one? maybe fats!) 🙂

Wrinkles? yes! It’s becoming more noticeable but I am not bothered…keep on smiling at least I can say, that’s my “smile line” as opposed to say “my age line”, makes sense?

To reiterate once more, when you’re fifty and beyond it doesn’t mean you have to look like one, by all means look modestly younger than your age, believe me…it adds to your graceful exit in this world of ours!


My passion in Dentistry is still soaring high! I learned when you have the job you are passionate about, even when you are fifty and beyond, enthusiasm doesn’t goes away. I continued to push myself into a higher level if not into perfection.

Adult children…

I must admit, I miss the good old days when the children was preschoolers, when everything I say, they mimic my words, and actions, I remember their smile, their giggles and yet talking to them as an adult is fulfilling, I am proud to say I have raised two boys every parents would like to have!

I have learned to go with their dreams, with their passion and I love every minute of it.

Love and marriage…

I have learned the hard way… I have given so much love to the point there was nothing more to give! Marriage is not a barometer of true love, I knew there are couples who stayed together beyond 25th wedding anniversary or even more but secretly annoyed each other’s company. They profess their love in public or even post their happy family pictures in social media but they don’t even sleep in the same bedroom. However, it’s not my business! It takes two to tango and if you ask me which one to put in the marriage box? I would definitely say “respect”.

of being alone…

I have learned being alone is not sadness, it is “me time” I have time to pursue my other passion “photography”. I have more choices whether to stay in bed or see my friends, clean or read books, cook or buy food outside and many more!


Health is wealth: I agreed completely, without good health, the learning process for 54 yrs is nothing!

Knowing what I have been through, celebrating my 54th birthday is a privilege; this is the time of excitement; of looking forward of what will happen next, of moving forward, learning new things, meeting new people and who knows,what it might bring… a new beginning… a  new adventure to discover and explore life!

So ladies be happy..make some roar and keep smiling! 😉


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Celebrating 52 in Style!

October 27, 2011, flying high aboard Royal Jordanian Airlines, My friend Nabil warned not to travel on my birthday but I have a little superstitious belief that If I die, I die in style! 🙂

So, I reached my destination Amman, Jordan…in one piece… kicking and alive! Yeheyyy!

We had sumptuous lunch at my second family house. As much as I would like to eat more arabic dish, I was thinking about the 5 kilos I lost… hmmm i told myself…,”stop eating” otherwise your dress wont fit! SPandexxxxx!

After meeting the family members and old friends, we headed to Marriott  resort and spa at Dead Sea. Wonderful place, large swimming pools ( I think they were 4 of them), I was booked as one of the bride’s family member so for the meantime, i signed my name with their family name, (for discount purposes) yay!

beautiful sunset

After getting my things into the room , I hurried up to see the beautiful sunset, while walking along the shore, I met old friends, we sat down at the lobby of the hotel, few more minutes, familiar faces came in and I’m still dressed with shirt and jogging pants, I excused myself but they said it’s alright no need to change…so, dinner is served!

52nd b-day dinner

At the very end, waiters were getting closer to our table, I thought for a while, they were already closing but to my surprised, one is carrying a big cake with one big candle. Hurray! it’s my 52nd b-day. Cheers!

thanx for coming!

Thank you for an awesome night, a night to remember!


Dr. Exequiel Mariano and Dra. Emma Mariano

🙂 ♥ April 10,2011…you’re turning 88 , I have been thinking of what to write, what wishes I have not uttered for the past 52 years. What nice words I haven’t spoken. What deeds I haven’t done to express my gratitude or to undo any mistakes I have made or misfortune I may have caused.

It’s been 24 years since I left Philippines,though I come home once a year , I felt it is not enough, I am always longing for the day that I could be with you, that I can take care of you, share with you my stories, my hardship and triumph.

I wonder if you still remember when I was in grade one, one sunny afternoon, when all my classmates were heading to the river to swim with the carabao (water Buffalo) I braved the heat as well and joined the fun, removing all clothes and jump, splashing, swimming, shouting with joy! How can I not forget your big eyes and red face, your big steps rushing toward me, while I was in a hurry to put on my clothes, you’re also in a hurry to pull your belt out and pakkkk! yay! you hit me hard, I can’t even cry because I know its my fault. My teachers were scolded too, for letting me out without your permission, in returned they punished me too. I was asked to stand up for an hour in front of the class with my arms spread out. 🙁

Every Christmas was full of surprises, you’re so thin and yet you became the Santa for every hospital staff’s children, every child was excited to get a gift, until one day my big brother (and me) spoiled the fun, we found the gifts you were hiding and opened the surprise, and so the news spreads… you.. as Santa Claus! 🙂

We live in remote area, where electricity is history!…brown out most of the time, and yet you make each simple day a memorable one . I enjoyed going to the farm, eating lunch under the tree, running around the muddy area, planting rice, peanuts and corn.

Every summer, I look forward to spend the holiday in the city, enjoy Chinese cuisine, ice cream and movies. I remember the old train, the smell of fuel, the noise , we have tried all kinds of transportation, sea, land and air. I like to eat balut (boiled egg with fertilized chicken embryo)peanuts, pansit (noodles) and siopao while on the road.

I love your instinct, you were the first one to have a yellow jeep and four tricycle. Your everyday outfit is awesome; my favorite is…white shoes, white pants and yellow long sleeve shirt. If hair gel was already in fashion, I bet you will be the first one to use it.For me,  you’re the most handsome father in the whole world, indeed mama is so lucky!

I remember the days when all my brothers are in their teens or early college years, you stand firmed on your rules, no smoking, no drinking, no night outs, stay out of trouble! Anyone who defies suffered the consequence and yet you were the first one to protect them when they were in trouble. “All for one and one for all”. I remember the bolo (big knife) the gun and bullets; Ferocious as a Lion when the cubs are in danger.

I love what you do, your passion in making people smile, I watched how you curve those teeth, how you pulled tooth without an “ouch” no matter how deep. Everything was an easy case for you and one day I promised myself I will be like you if not even better than you in the field of Dentistry.

But no, you discourage me,  you believe that Nursing is a better choice, a ticket to a better life outside the country.I obeyed your command, I took nursing and passed the board in speed.( I was only 20 yrs.old).

Dentistry is my world, I know its my passion, its my dream and no amount of discouragement will ever prevent me in pursuing my dream. So off I went to chase it, defiant as I am, I took Dentistry. I am sure, you remember my long letter to you that I wanted to chase my dream and I will come back … successful in my chosen field.

But once again, I failed, a few months away from my graduation, I got married. In spite of my mistakes,of broken promises, you did not turn your back, instead you help me get through with it, to be firmed in time of struggle and hardship. All those years I did not hear any bad words from you, you kept me going , I knew if you could only say the word ” i told you so” i could have heard it a million times.You have given me the greatest gift i would always remember …you believe in me.

papa and me

You are a man of few words, a strict disciplinarian, a good provider,a pillar of strength, the best of all the best as father, I salute you Dr. E. Mariano.

Words are not enough,but allow me to  say this again and again I LOVE YOU SO MUCH PAPA, I thank God for everything specially for giving you and mama a good health always.

♥♥♥Happy Happy birthday!♥♥♥