What\’s up Erniel?

\”It\’s the thought that counts!\”… and counting since 2006

It’s Been A While

Since I’ve made any significant entries on this blog. People get busy and all of a sudden things get pushed off into the back burner.

It’s not an issue of too busy to do things… it’s more of a priority issue. I guess my personal life isn’t as exciting as most of us want it to be, nevertheless, it’s my life. You can probably read my latest entry on 5west.wordpress.com What’s keeping me busy and away from this personal publication? The new job at the ICU? The latest quadbro.com project? Whatever it is, still there’s just so much you can do in a day, which eventually turns into weeks, and then months. Then by the time you notice, a year has past and you look back and ask yourself, “what have I accomplished?”

Time is the only asset we all have an equal share of. The question is, what do we do with our time?

I decided a long time ago that it’s either watching TV or working on my computer. I voted for the latter. I figured, if I was going to spend some time, I’d rather spend it being more productive, i.e., you create something, learn something, or improve on your skills. What did all of those late nights of gaming (thanks Counter Strike!) helped me accomplish? Absolutely nothing!

What benefit did I get from learning to out-shoot, out-run and out-smart my virtual opponents?

Absolutely nothing!

Is fishing a waste of time?

Not necessarily.

Point is… we spend time everyday. What do we do to make the best of it? Only you can answer that. In the meantime, I hope it gets you somewhere because when that clock starts tickin’ the last thing you want is to see is your reflection in the mirror, wrinkles revealing your age, and you looking back and asking yourself, “what did I accomplish?”πŸ™‚

April 19, 2007 Posted by | Generally Speaking | Leave a comment

Home Sweet Home

We’re finally moved in!

Of course it took us about 3 weeks, but finally Saturday evening February 24, 2007, we did it.

After almost 7 years of constantly moving, we consider ourselves experts at thisπŸ™‚ . My Sweetie and I did everything with our handsome Suburban, thanks to God and Mama’s help, we were blessed with such a workhorse of a vehicle, I’d recommend a Suburban to any one anytime (Chevy where’s my cut?πŸ™‚ ) . Just imagine moving a whole bunch of stuff, from king-size beds to computer desks, to armoires and couches, all without a hitch (literally). If you’re wondering how we did it, just wait for our book “The Poor Man’s Guide to Moving” by Erniel and Jorgia Pamintuan, Moving experts!πŸ™‚

This place is such a blessing, and to think that it for some time now I’ve been praying for a place like this, it just blows me away to know that the Lord has answered my prayer. You see, I’ve been praying for a house close to the kid’s school (now all they have to do is walk to school… talk about a gas saver!). During that time rent around the area was something we couldn’t afford. But somehow God opened up a door which turns out to be a blessing to us, as well as the owners of the property. Lets just say it was a sure win-win situation (more on this later). The Lord is indeed good all the time, and all the time the Lord is good! What more can I say?

Overall our situation is getting better. Despite all the hardship and challenges (which on the outside may not be evident), we are slowly getting there. The Lord is indeed good! Hopefully we’ll be able to post some pictures of the new place. In the meantime I’d like to leave you with this…

If you’re in a time of your life where things don’t seem to make any sense and that “nothing” is happening, just be patient… The Lord is doing His work and is preparing something good for you. We just have to be patient and wait on Him. We know, we’ve seen it firsthand.

Looking back to where we’ve been, what we’ve gone through, and the things that happened along the way, we can clearly see God’s leading. Like I said before, the Lord is good all the time, and all the time, the Lord is good!

February 25, 2007 Posted by | Generally Speaking | Leave a comment

Friendster, Myspace, Your Place or Mine?

I’m sure you know about Friendster and Myspace. Perhaps you even have an account with them too.

These sites are a good way to keep in touch, without keeping in touch, as in, a place where you can find out what’s going on with your family and friends even when you don’t get to see them often. How cool is that?

Just recently my beloved wife open one of these accounts just so she can view pictures of people who we know. As it turns out, we keep finding friends who we haven’t seen for a while. It’s like watching a soap opera, or better yet, a reality TV show. We get to find out who’s with who, what’s been going on and what’s new.

Its funny how some “experts” predict that because of the internet, people are going to be more and more isolated from each other, however, this is not the case. I believe that thanks to the Internet, we are getting more and more connected, and in the comfort of our homes. Soon, there will be wide area home networks connected to one another where family and friends can communicate directly to each other via webcam. Imagine that, a server for every household. Hmmm I better get back to the drawing board and get this infrastructure up and running!

January 17, 2007 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Happy New Year!

2006 is gone, 2007 is here. Another year, another chapter.

This year has been a blast. We had our ups, downs, and unders. But despite this we know that there is Someone up there that watches over us, and for the most part, He comes through when things get really rocky. This is something that is quite awesome. Just to know that God is always in control despite what happens around you.

The Bible says, “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” – Deut 31:8. What a promise. God will never leave us, nor forsake us.

As we face a new year, let’s not forget about God’s promises and mercies, and how He carried us through the tough times. So you you my friends, have a Happy and Prosperous New Year as we usher in 2007!

January 1, 2007 Posted by | Generally Speaking | Leave a comment

Thanksgiving Dinner Special

Jasmine Girl

Originally uploaded by pamin21.

It was a humble thanksgiving dinner…

We had the usual… mashed potatoes and gravy, some casserole, rotisserie chicken from HEB (for a turkey), and a turkey leg I got from work.

During the dinner, we asked the kids, “What are you thankful for?”. My little Jasmine, only 3 and a half years old said, “I’m thankful for Jesus, Daddy!”. Out of all the responses, this one takes the cake.

Her response reminds me of that Bible verse found in Matthew 21:16 which reads, “…out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise”. Yes, the Bible said it.

The fact of the matter is that, Jesus is the reason we have Thanksgiving, and without Him, there is no reason to celebrate anything for that matter.

With that, lets take a moment to reflect on God’s goodness to us and be thankful for the blessings the Lord has given us, no matter what our circumstances may be… after all, He is in control, and He’s got something grand planned for us in His time!

November 24, 2006 Posted by | Generally Speaking | Leave a comment

Valley Trash?…

I happened to come across this posting by a resident of South Padre Island. This just confirms what my good friend Joaquin told me about his observation of the Valley and its residents. I wouldn’t want to repeat the whole post, but you can check it out by clicking here.

If there is such a thing as “Valley Trash”, it is trully unfortunate. I just hope we have enough sense not to contribute to the litter!

November 8, 2006 Posted by | Valley Life | Leave a comment

Home again at Mama’s House


Gabi, Jordan and Jasmine at Mama’s House

Originally uploaded by pamin21.

Our recent trip to California was both bitter and sweet. It was one of those unexpected things that prove to be a blessing.

You probably heard this before… if you’re looking for a blessing, find one that’s not in disguise. This sure was one. Unfortunately it had to come at a sad time… we just lost our great grandmother, Consolacion Barican. She passed away on Oct 4, 2006 at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Arcadia, CA.

The sad news hit on the midnight of Oct 5, 2006 when we got the call from Kuya Jojo that grandma passed away. In less than 24 hours we head back to California from Texas, arriving around 10:00 p.m. the Oct 5, 2006. This was expected though… it was just a matter of time. Grandma has been in and out of the hospital for almost 3 months. She’s resting now. No more pain or suffering.

Times like this surely bring family together. In 2 days Mama, Papa and Kuya Jojo, together with grandma’s remains will be flying back to the Philippines where she will be finally put to rest, beside her husband, at the gravesite they had prepared for this final event on earth. Sad as it may seem, we are not without hope. For the Bible clearly says we shall see them again the the last day when our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ comes.

For us that remain, we mourn and grieve at our loss. Although we will miss them, we have a hope that only comes from knowing that someday, we will see them again, this time glorious and immortal, when our Lord calls us home to be with Him.

October 8, 2006 Posted by | Generally Speaking | Leave a comment

Follow the Crowd?

Back in highschool, I already knew what I wanted to do in life. However, like everybody else, you tend to make choices based on what other people expect of you. My parents wanted me to become a doctor, just like Mom. Nothing wrong with that, in fact, I did consider a career in medicine. You see, my Mom wanted to be a doctor for the right reasons.

Back then, growing up as a child, my mother saw how her dad (Grandpa Diones) would help the local town people. He was the village captain for a small fishing community in the southern part of Luzon in the Philippines. People with all sorts of ailment would come to Grandpa for help, which he did unselfishly. Back then the closest medical facility was a half days journey on horseback. This was where my Mom got her inspiration… “when I grow up, I will be a doctor so I can help people like these”. In fact, her plan was to become a missionary to Africa.

After highschool I decided to become a musician. My two passions in life, music and computers. I figured, I’ll study music, become really good at it, work with computers and hook them up to synthesizer keyboards to compose or arrange music that can be used for film or commercial applications. Not quite what my parents’ had in mind. During the “career weekend” after the deans of schools made their pitch, 80% of the freshmen followed the dean for the school of nursing. Nursing back then became a fad. I wasn’t about to be a mindless cow that followed the herd to the slaughterhouse, so I followed a small group of highly intelligent mamals… the music majors.

“What? Erniel’s going to be a musician? Where’s the money there?” you can almost hear everybody say that when then found out. “Don’t let him waste that high SAT score” some would even say. After a period of debate with my parents, I finally succumb to the pressure. “Ok” I said, “I’ll take up Medical Technology as a pre-med so that I can work on God’s creation (the human body) instead of man’s creation (the computer)”. With an argument like that, how can you win? I suppose you wouldn’t have a choice either, you don’t pay the bills, they do.

Things were fine during my 1st year in college taking prep courses to become a Med Tech. My Mom’s first trip to the United States changed everything, when upon her return she said “if you want to go to the USA, be a nurse… they are in high demand because of a shortage”. Great, now I’ll have to eat my words up and follow the herd to the slaughterhouse. What can you do? Like it or not, here we go.

Looking back I’d say it wasn’t all that bad. I am where I want to be, the Great US of A. Ever since I was a child I wanted to be in America. I guess watching “Sesame Street” growing up fueled my passion for discovery, creativity, and the love for art and music. Kids in America have it made, I though to myself, they have hobby shops and toys, things that exist only in my imagination. Well I guess you wouldn’t know how things would have turned out until you take that path and experience it yourself.

In a way I’m glad I listened, however, that’s just half the battle. No matter what you do, something deep down inside is just aching to get out. You may have prepared academically for that job or career you envisioned yourself to be in, however, if the passion for that job or career does not run deep down in your veins, you just wasted your time preparing for it. In fact according to statistics, more than half of college graduates work at a job not related to their field, and most of them switch careers after an average of 5 years on the job. I suppose you’ll seldom see people who actually pursue their passion in life.

What are the implications? Wouldn’t you agree that most of us succumb to “following the crowd”? If you think about it on a larger scale, not a lot of people are doing what they really want to do in life. In a way, we all followed the crowd and did what others expected us to do, and where ever we end up in, we lie to ourselves and say “this is exactly where I wanted to be, it’s not that bad”. I don’t know about you, but after a while, I stopped pretending. The one good thing about this whole deal is that fact that we are living in one of the blessed nations on earth, and that we have the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness.

Let me ask you this… when was the last time you choose to follow the crowd? Did it get you anywhere? Does the company you keep help you get where you want to be? Are you comfortable in your discomfort? Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired? I’ve gotten to a point in my life where I’ve stopped, look back and thought to myself, “there is more to life than this… there’s gotta be more”. When you get to that point, brace yourself! You’re in for one bumpy ride… but let me assure you, you wouldn’t want it any other way. Losers follow the crowd… I’m not about to be one, how about you?

July 31, 2006 Posted by | Loser's Guide To Life (From Rags to Riches) | Leave a comment

“Don’t Follow Me, I’m Lost!”

“Don’t Follow Me, I’m Lost!”

I first read this on a beat up volkwagon beetle when I was driving to work in Los Angeles, California. Back then I was a Director of Nurses for a 72-bed skilled nursing facility. It was my first year on the job.

Before my promotion, I was working the night shift making around $11.50/hr. The former Director of Nurses left, and they had asked me if I would be interested in filling in. Fresh from college with no experience except from when I was a student, I reluctantly accepted the offer. They taught me everything I needed to know… I taught myself…and after 6 months it was full steam ahead. I officially became Director of Nurses, this time making double what I was making when I worked the night shift.

At age 23, I became one of the youngest Director of Nurses. This became quite a challenge for me. Could you imagine a 23-year-old kid fresh from college, working only 3 months as a night nurse, now having to manage this skilled nursing facility staffed by people who were a lot older? I received mixed responses mainly because of how young I look for the kind of job I did.

Most of the people I met would comment on how young I was. Whenever I’d get job applicants introduced to me, they would almost always expect to find somebody close to their 50’s. “I’m sorry to disappoint you” I’d say to myself. Someone even asked me if I was old enough to drive. The youngest I’ve been aged to be is 17! (It must be the rice!)

plateframe.jpgAt this point, I was what you would call a “success”… nice car, own place, substantial income, living the “American Dream”. Yep, “I may be young, but I’m in charge!” so I thought. (This was actually the frame I had on my car’s plate number, a gift from one of my friends who got me nowhere fast!)

Looking back it would have been more appropriate to have had that bumper sticker “Don’t Follow Me, I’m Lost!”, and to make matters worse, I didn’t know it! You see, this picture of “success” wouldn’t last, because as the wheel turns…you may just find yourself at the very bottom. And that’s exactly where I ended up.

“A wise man learns from his mistakes. But a wiser man, learns from the mistakes of others”. I like the way my friend Candi puts it… “We don’t get older, we just get wiser.” I would like to think that this holds true for me. I know it does. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be writing this series.

The one good thing that I learned though, is that no matter where you end up, eventually, you’ll find your way, only if your are willing to change. “But how”, you ask, “would you know you need change if you were lost and didn’t know it in the first place?” Elementary my dear… you don’t! It didn’t strike me at first, however, the plot thickens. The stage has been set… the actors are ready… lights… cameras… action!

July 3, 2006 Posted by | Loser's Guide To Life (From Rags to Riches) | 2 Comments

Musik Page

For all you music lovers out there, here’s a sample of what I’ve been up to the last 10 years.

Well, most of this stuff has been in my head since high-school. I thought I’d share it to the world (if it is worth anything).

Feel free to listen and give me your comments. Anything to impove one’s skill is always welcome. Enjoy!

Follow the yellow brick road to dA MusiK

June 28, 2006 Posted by | Generally Speaking | 1 Comment