January 24, 2011

This is where it all began

Back in November of 2009, I wrote about our office's annual Christmas outreach program called Lights for Hope. The 2010 event did not have as many children; we were a few tens shy of a thousand. Mr. Octopus the inflatable bouncer wasn't inflated on time—which is why he's still lopsided here—and soon after I took this picture, it started raining, which forced everyone to move to the alternate venue. But I have to hand it to the college kids who spent time with the public school children and the local child actors who came to spread some Christmas joy: they adjusted to their sheltered but cramped space, everyone gamely continued with the program, and I saw nothing but smiles on the young children's faces.

Ateneo de Manila University 2010 Lights for Hope Christmas outreach




I would like to apologize for disappearing without a word for two whole months. Even early in November, my schedule and work load were getting progressively worse and it was soon after this event that I had to decide to let go of something, and it just had to be my blog. I don't want to bother anyone with the details since it isn't what My Manila is for; suffice it to say that it was the first time in a decade that I had to go to work during the Christmas break and that I hardly felt the past two months go by. To everyone who worried, visited, and left messages and sent me email: thank you from the bottom of my heart. I wish I could give each one of you a real hug.

Let me say one final thing: I'm baaaaack! :)

28 comments:

Lois said...

Oh Hilda I'm so glad you are back and I'm very happy to hear you are alright! I have missed you and your blog so much. Welcome back friend!

MurciaDailyPhoto said...

Welcome back. I'm glad that the whole problem was due to overwork.

Misalyn said...

Welcome back!! So glad that you're back in the blogosphere.

ρομπερτ said...

A wonderful return and perfect title indeed. Wishing you all a wonderful start of the new week.


daily athens

billyB said...

Nice to have you back again. No more overworking OK?

Warren said...

Great to have you back, Hilda!

Leif Hagen said...

Wahoo! Yippee! Yeah! I'm so glad you're back! Wishing you and yours all the very best in 2011!
Warmest regards from cold, snowy EAGAN daily photo

alex said...

so glad to hear that all is well and that you are back! best wishes from sunny Southern California.

Olivier said...

content de ton retour, et le travail passe avant tout, c'est compréhensible.

Rob and Mandy said...

Welcome baaaaack!

Julie said...

Good to have your cheery presence among us again, Hilda.

Dina said...

Hilda!!!!! Thank God you are alive and well and back!!! I was worrying.
Hope your schedule will become more humane.

cieldequimper said...

I had been wondering.... Welcome back!

Cezar and Léia said...

Oh dear Hilda, I'm so happy that you are fine, safe, BACK and it's only work matters, I was so worried about you, and now it's a relief having your news, thanks so much!
Thanks for your good energies and prayers, family in Brazil is fine, and also everything in Luxembourg.
I hope things in your work can be less stressful now.
And about your post, when you see a beautiful smiling in children's face, it's something really precious for us and you can think...it was worth!
God bless you
Léia

arabesque said...

hi hilds, ^0^ everybody's wondering where you were for the past few weeks, glad you're finally back. ^-^
i should've known you're busy, expect that during december. ^0^
i hope this post means your schedule is a bit sane and less stressful na.

brattcat said...

So good to see you back. I had been worried. This is a very reassuring post.

Kaori said...

I almost squealed when I saw your comment, Hilda! Oh, I'm so glad you're okay! I'd like to give you a big hug back! We really missed you around here...looking forward to your posts again! :-D xx

Louis la Vache said...

«Louis» joins the chorus in cheering "YEA! HILDA'S BACK!!!!!

You have no idea how worried we were and how many cyber-discussions, over-coffee and over lunch discussions we've had wondering what happened to you! We're MOST thankful you are back and nothing catastrophic happened!

Christian Lucas Sangoyo said...

I was just wondering why I wasn't receiving any updates from your blog earlier =)

Welcome back!

Jacob said...

Whew! I'm not only glad that you're back but that you are all in one piece! You were missed mightily!

So welcome back! I'm sure that most of us can empathize with you because sometimes life becomes overwhelming and we have to let go and simplify to get through it.

In fact, I may have to do that tomorrow! Nah, just kidding. Well, sort of!

I remember this program and thought at the time how cool it was to help kids have fun at Christmas!

Jarart said...

Welcome back! I missed you!

Halcyon said...

Glad to see you're back in the blogging business! Also glad to hear that your absence was due to a heavy workload and not any kind of health problems. Hope 2011 will be lighter for you. :)

James Mark said...

Along with everybody else - so pleased to find your entry today! Welcome back!

Francisca said...

Oh dear Hilda... my heart skipped a beat in delight when I saw your note! Like all your blogging friends, I am so relieved that you were not dealing with any worse health issues than overwhelm. And overwhelm I sure understand; you did the right thing, of course... Hope this year gives you more breathing room... and do allow yourself the space of not feeling obliged to post each single day... (I am going to listen to my own advice as I see a heavy schedule for this 2011!) Big hug right back...!! May the joy of seeing children's smiles stay with you all year round. And finally, you are right, some of those buns on my blog are giant buchi!

Dina said...

Gosh Hilda, you sure are well-loved all around the world.
Thanks for taking precious time to drop by at Jerusalem Hills again.
A big shalom to you!

Gunn said...

Good to have YOU back again!:)

Steffe said...

Glad to see you back blogging again Hilda.

AntiguaDailyPhoto.Com said...

I am so happy you're baaaaaaack! We missed you so much.