You’ve got a friend

Came out of the office for coffee break and this is what I saw. A vision of loveliness.
rescue dogA perfect friendship. This is a rescue dog. Still young but too big for its age. The strongest tail, ever. Tail wagging, happy to see me, the master said stay away from the tail, too late, whipped! Wow, tail can leave a sting.
rescue dog 1As Snoopy would say, a perfect friend is:

  • always happy to see you
  • loves to share and smile
  • has a warm spot for you
  • always standing by your side
  • full of great advice
  • ready to listen at a moments notice
  • good for holding and helping
  • available to lean on.

Fall Obsession


What bonds me from the people who I work with is gardening. I am not a foodie person but when it comes to any types of planting, I can be very engaging socially.

Gardening can become all too consuming and can be an obsession especially in community gardening. Between gardeners, we exchange the product and fruit of our love.

Cayote from the Mother of a female co-worker.  Garlic from a teacher. Tomato from the Mother of a  male colleague. These vegetables are  easy to grow and low maintenance.

Each of this plant has a story behind it. The cayote is the last one that was not eaten by a raccoon, the garlic came from the Kootenay which is the southeast corner of British Columbia and the tomato was grown by an 80-year-old mother.

Giving and sharing comes naturally amongst the gardeners. There is no such thing as selfishness. We share ideas, seeds and camaraderie.

We reap what we’ve sown. And the reward is friendship.

Everyone is a teacher

Johnnie, my nephew, was asked to do an informal speech for the graduates.  It’s remarkable to hear what he shared with his classmates and being in a private Catholic school, everything is faith centered.

“The amount of good because of hard work will always outweigh the difficulties it took to get there. For us as Grads, it is a reference to our hard five years in high school. Also, it is a motivational idea to remember for any struggles ahead of us!

Jesus was trying to tell his disciples that although they would endure pain and suffering, soon they would realize the benefits of it. This gospel works very well for us graduates because it relates to the student life. Student life is hard, but rewarding. “

And of course the last speech is from the Valedictorian that I condensed and skipped the formalities.

John's Friends 2014

Class of 2014 Holy Cross

Yes we have finally done it!  We are the Holy Cross graduating class of 2014!

As I was lying in bed last night – I was nervous and all hyped up waiting for this moment. I was nervous because I realized that this may be the last time that our Grad class will be with each other in one place.

For all the great memories and friendship we have made in the past years at Holy Cross leading up to this day, for some of us, this is our farewell – our final goodbye.

Over the past few weeks, I noticed that there were a lot of grads worried and scared about leaving Holy Cross because they were afraid of the future and the uncertainty that it brings. What I want to invite all of you to think about is that this is just the beginning and there are many more adventures and good times to come.

Really, the only people who should be crying are the adults and teachers in the building, either they are really going to miss us or because they are happy to see us go.

So before I recap our grad class highlights, I want to take a moment to thank each and every one of you who have participated in our five years at Holy Cross. It takes a village.

To all the teachers and staff at Holy Cross, on behalf of the graduating class I want to thank you for helping us get here and for sometimes even making it entertaining:

  • the movie “UP” for making us remember  the old man in the movie, and a good 30 minute story that had nothing to do with our lesson.
  • for growing out your beard and making us think of Santa and we’re still waiting for our Christmas presents.
  • for teaching us math and Tagalog at the same time, while constantly encouraging us to do our best.
  • for brightening up our Science classes; and teaching us that biology never looked so good in High Def.
  • for teaching us that teachers can be kids, too.
  • for all your stories in law class and teaching us that you don’t become a teacher for the money you do it for the kids.
  • in the words of Johnnie Logan, you inspire others with your passion, hard work and friendly father-like figure.
  • for all the funny things you do while showing all of us how much you care and love both your students and the environment. You did all this while reminding us to always be ourselves.
  • for teaching and reminding us that hard work gets results, and that life is ‘fair enough’.
  • to all staff at Holy Cross we thank you for your constant love and support.
  • to our parents, through thick and thin, without you we wouldn’t be here today.  We might not agree with everything you say or do, – like my dad’s corny humour that I still don’t understand, or my mom’s excessively slow driving that drives me insane but keeps us safe – we know that everything you have said or done, continues to shape our lives and we could not do this without you.

I don’t want to be someone who looks back, ten years later, and realizes that I peaked in High School. I want to go back and look at high school as a place that influenced the best parts of me.

What I have learned from Holy Cross is not just the discipline of Math, Science, English and Religious Education.  My teachers have been you, as well, my fellow classmates of 2014.

I learned that being a Catholic is about doing the small things and the kind things all the time. I learned that my Catholic faith is with me all the time, and that my faith lives inside me, not inside these school walls.

What I want to invite all of you to think about is that this is just the beginning and there are many more adventures and good times to come. We bring our faith, our friendships and all the things we learned here at Holy Cross, we bring them with us, to wherever we go next.

May we bring all of the good memories and the hard work, and the confidence in our faith that we learned here at Holy Cross to the next chapters of our life.

Ladies and Gentleman, I leave you with this.  Here on stage are the beautiful faces of the Holy Cross grads of 2014.