18 years of happy marriage….

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My husband and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary yesterday, 22nd July. Our first wedding was in Uxbridge, London, in 1999. The simplest wedding you can ever imagine. We did not really spend anything on that day. We did our small reception at my in-laws’ house and had very few guests. Nothing fancy.  We did our big wedding in Manila, where my over 200 relatives live. Haha Yes, we saved our money for our big church wedding in Manila in 2000.

It’s been 18 years, and when you have a partner who loves you dearly with all his heart, accepting just the way you are with his unconditional love, life is beautiful. I feel that every single day since we got married. Of course, you can’t avoid the ups and downs in marriage but what makes ours different is we are together in every way. We have the same interest, same passion, same craziness. Our daughter knows exactly what I’m talking about. She grew up with a very loving atmosphere.

Recently, a mother and daughter, supposedly old friends whom I considered family since I lived in Germany, accused me and my family of faking our happy posts on Facebook. That I try to portray a happy life but in reality, I’m a vile person. Well, it’s my turn to hit back darlings and I am not sorry for what I’m about to say.

All my family and friends know, those who are close to me know that I speak my mind on social media. I don’t hide my feelings. If I am angry, I express it. If I’m happy, it is infectious that everyone could feel that happiness. I am probably one of the most honest person you’ll ever encounter. But to accuse me of FAKING happiness, that is them, and it’s something they obviously do and in fact, going through. They obviously feel so jealous of a great relationship we have as a family. I was obviously being watched closely by these people all these years without knowing that this is how they have always seen me – VILE.  Well, what can I do with that?

This person you’re calling horrible is the person who cancelled all her schedule every time you were around London, just to meet up with you and your family. This person is the person who saved her hard earned money for her trainfare, so when you’re finally over, she has money to pay for her expenses. This vile person never forgot to greet your birthdays on Facebook and kept in touch wholeheartedly. This person ignored your provoking comments on Facebook just because you hate her President. This person gave up her performing career to focus on family, and be there for her child, and always been happily married. This person is so loved by her husband that he pampers her everyday in simple ways. This person would rather have an enemy than be FAKE to anyone.

I just wish that they would look at themselves in the mirror first because they don’t look pleasant in my eyes either.

And eversince they found out that I am a Duterte supporter, they have attacked me on Facebook because of our political differences. Isn’t that pathetic? Politics, Religion, and friendships. Not a good mix really. They ruin all relationships. I don’t react on what they post on Facebook, but they always had something to say on mine.

Lastly, I am confident that all my posts on Facebook are genuine, honest, real and ME. What you see is what you get. That’s me. It’s a pity that some people are too jealous of people like me who can freely speak their minds. I really don’t care about who likes me or not. I have one amazing man who truly loves the real me and who sees me beautifully. All my posts about how caring my husband is, they are all true. For 18 years of our happy marriage, he made me feel special. Made breakfast in bed every single day when he’s around and not busy. He didn’t make me feel like a slave unlike other husbands who are so bossy, and just expected their wives to cook for them all the time. My husband and I have a healthy relationship, not perfect, but we are happy. We are together in every way, same interests in life. At least my husband is not a boring man. He’s fun to be with and not too intellectually boring.

Never insult my family. You know nothing about our journey and the trials we’ve survived. Our daughter is so proud of her parents, who are not couch potatoes at our age – just sitting down, pigging out, getting fatter and fatter, doing nothing. I am 46 years old, and my husband turned 60 last month. This photo was taken yesterday. Our daughter has the most hardworking parents inspiring people to take care of themselves, get fit, achieve their goals and be happy.

These people always talked about people’s lives. All I can say now is SAD. It is very sad that your true colours were just revealed now, when you have been feeling this against me for so long. I wasted my time and money travelling to London just to see you. Goodbye,  B family.  We will not miss you at all.  I never had a good laugh with your company, and that’s the truth! Call me stupid, idiot, but I’d rather be one than to pretend upper class with a pretentious accent, that is obviously Visayan no matter how hard you try to be Bri-ish. LOL

My advice:  Remove people in your life who are not happy with your success, and simply not happy for you. Never be afraid to be YOU.

 

 

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Fitness First – best gym in Bedford

I am not being biased by what I’m about to say. I was a long time member of Fitness First Bedford before I moved to another gym, and then went back to FF since my husband started teaching there and became one of the Personal Trainers. I left because of doing Body Attack classes and FF didn’t offer this class during that time. My husband, Garry, did it first and got me hooked doing Body Attack class.

But let me tell you how happy I am to be back at Fitness First.

First of all, there are no cliques and favouritism at this gym.  Instructors just do their jobs, teach, then leave when finished. No favourites among the participants who are always being featured on social media. This is why I don’t feature one person on my page, I always show group photos. There’s no bitching from other gym members talking about other people’s lives after a class whilst having a coffee together. You will not find this at Fitness First because they have no cafe, although you can sit down and have a quick coffee from the machine. But in reality, the atmosphere is different. At FF, People work on their fitness goals with PTs. People go there to have a good workout, have fun in class, relax in the steam room/sauna, swim, shower and leave when they’re done. No smell of poo or dirty nappies around the pool or changing rooms. More quiet and relaxing. Always clean toilets and shower rooms. People, esp the staff, are very friendly, always smiling when you come in, greeting you and saying Thank you after. Management is fantastic. They do team building games everyday to bring positivity in staff relationship. No tension. Everyone is very helpful. Personal Trainers are so helpful, giving free trial sessions and very friebdly. I have sat there and observed what they do. They are really good with people.

Fitness First have great facilities, affordable membership, great classes, great instructors. May not be as new like the newly built one in Clapham but in general, it is a good gym to go to. My husband, Garry Noakes, is teaching loads of classes at FF now. FF gave him the opportunity to explore and use his skills. Not just one class, but loads of classes within a year of being there. FF gave me the opportunity too to introduce FitSteps there without begging for it. They asked me if I’m interested to do a class as they knew I am a FitSteps instructor and they wanted to introduce somethng new. They are so open there and very welcoming. No promises broken. When they say it, they will do it. So Thank you FF. Your members are benefiting from it. I try my very best to justify the way FitSteps should be delivered.

Overall, I recommend going to Fitness First. You will get the service you are paying for. That’s for sure.  No one will compare you to anyone. They have the best Personal Trainers in town who will help you achieve your fitness goals.

So, what are you waiting for?   Call Fitness First Bedford. 0344 571 2811 and look for PT Garry.  😀  

18th May 2017… D Day…

D Day! D day I realized I needed my life back and make a real decision. Time to take control again of my life and focus on the important things. Facebook dominated people’s lives for so many years now, and I’m one of them. Not Facebook’s fault, my fault. I allowed it, we allowed it.
I am no longer going to be active there. I rarely pay attention on people’s posts anyway, but when I do, I directly say my opinion to the one who posted it, and I don’t go around bitching about it. Unlike some people I know, they are so patronizing on Facebook, but very good in stabbing you in the back too. I really speak my mind and whether you like it or not, I will say it. How you read my post is your responsibility. Here’s how I deal with things on social media – As long as my name is not mentioned, I will not take it personally. But if you name and shame me, you are banned in my life forever! You won’t hear again from me. I am not a war freak person, but I will just pretend you’re dead. I do defend some people though esp if it’s an act of bullying or racism.  Other than that, I mind my own biz. So why am I leaving Facebook then? Because I have had enough! It became so filthy.

I have been receiving non-stop private messages from people who sell products like dietary supplements, natural pills (as they describe them), but I am not interested in buying nor selling them. First, I don’t believe in any pills. Second, I dislike any artificial vegetable or fruit processed supplements turned into pills. Nothing is natural about that. I do not reply  to them but they can’t seem to read between the lines. Find a way of selling without annoying people. My mother was the best sales person. She had a great technique in winning clients, and maintain friendship with them. And during her days, there was no internet. Meet people, talk to them. Organize a party and introduce your products. Anything in writing is always misinterpreted. Believe me, I’ve learned my lesson.

People become too familiar about each other’s business on Facebook to the extent of competing against each other. Who leads a better life kind of thing. They just keep topping each other. It makes you really want to puke sometimes. I call it Bragbook more than Facebook. I’m guilty of bragging too when it comes to my family. I brag about them all the time. Though we’re not perfect, they’re my treasure. 😀

It was nice reconnecting with so many friends in the past and I had a great laugh with you all, but Facebook didn’t really do anything good for me. I lost friends because of it. At least I can have a normal morning now without seeing 20 selfies from the same person.  Either her face, her fat legs, her senseless posts asking for attention – no more of those unpleasant poses.

Most of all, it makes me feel sad when you know some people well and they post the opposite on Facebook, like who is this person trying to be someone she’s not? I know one who is pregnant at the moment in her mid 40s, telling people she is ok but deep inside she is depressed. She’s been depressed for so long that she won’t even acknowledge it.  Yep, keep convincing the world honey because that’s what matters to some people, how the world perceive them. SAD.

Facebook made me sick already. I can no longer let any social network control my life. I need to be in control, and that starts now.

D DAY!  New beginning…

 

Remembering our Wedding day…

9th March, 2000 – our church wedding day in Manila, Philippines. It was our second wedding actually as we got married in civil ceremony in London in July 1999. We really planned our wedding in Manila as my family and relatives were mostly there. My relatives and friends came all the way from USA, Germany, Canada, UK, Cebu, Pangasinan. It was indeed a grand reunion of people closest to our hearts. Garry’s brother, Bob, came from London. That’s his first time in Asia and he had a blast.

I remember flying to Philippines twice in three months whilst planning our church wedding. I even spent Christmas with my family there and had a brilliant time. I don’t know how I managed to put an international entourage. All my best friends from childhood who are now in America, to High School, to College, were there. Out priest was the brother of my High School bestfriend. It was so special. But I guess when you know you have found the right person you want to be with for the rest of your life, suddenly everything seems to be easy.

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I was a beautiful bride, if I may say so. Ehem! Haha  My good friends made me look so beautiful in that beaded Indian silk gown, designed by my lovely friend. My make-up was just perfect as it wasn’t too dark, and it was very appropriate for a blooming bride.

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My parents were still around during our wedding day. My dad passed away in 2003, three years after my wedding. My Mommy passed away in 2012. Mommy was able to visit us in the UK, when I was due to give birth. She was able to enjoy her granddaughter, who was born in 2002.

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To my super loving husband who made me feel special all these years, I love you. I have no regrets after 16 years of being married to you. No one can ever replace you in my heart. Most of all, we were blessed with a beautiful daughter.

Happy 16th Wedding Anniversary, Garry!  ❤

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FitSteps fun…

I’m very proud of my FitSteppers. I have the best ones in class and they are all really lovely. Thank you so much everyone. I’m loving every moment teaching you FitSteps. Some routines can be challenging but they are all good. So keeeeeeep dancing! 😀

My classes are every Wednesday at 7:15pm, and every Friday at 11am, Brickhill Community Centre, Avon Crive, Bedford. See you there! 😀

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Thank you 2015…

This is the first I am writing to update all our family and friends around the globe the kind of year we’ve had. This year was all about moving on from our losses around this time last year. The last three years had been very hard for our family. My Mommy died in the Philippines in 2012, and just last year before Christmas, both my in-laws passed away. We’ve had the hardest test in our lives as Alyanna was very sad losing all her grandparents. But 2015 gave us a chance to breathe again, to move on and start our lives without Nan and Grandad.

Despite the heartaches, we just focused on our family – building our lives, finding light from grieving, and just staying together to support our girl. Not many friends understood it but we can’t do anything about that. We are only grateful to the ones who were there for us.

We are so proud of Alyanna for being such a good girl. We have received outstanding news from her school regarding her academic excellence and positive attitude towards her studies. We don’t know how she was able to balance her studies, dance exams,  dance displays, festivals, and at the same time playing the part of Dorothy in Showco’s production of The Wizard of Oz in Summer. The first half of 2015 was unbelievably busy. It was very hard but we were grateful Alyanna had all these activities to focus on.

Last Christmas, we were fortunate to be able to go away in the sunshine. It gave us a little break from the stress of arranging two funerals within a month. It was unimaginable! I saw how stressed Garry was, driving to London everyday, teaching his fitness classes and at the college, doing auditions for FLAMES (the musical play he directed). He was all over the place. See the job I had to do with my family alone? It was tough.

During Summer, both of us were doing our training  for my FitSteps and his Body Jam, and setting up classes. We still found time to take our girl out within UK to make the most of her summer holiday.  We both love our fitness, so now we got into teaching it as well (aside from other things that we do). Keeps us sane and fit. Haha Garry did a small musical play in London called FLAMES. He had really good reviews and hoping more will happen next year.

Blessings have already started and hoping it will continue in 2016.

May you all have a wonderful Christmas and All the best for the New Year!

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RACE FOR LIFE 2015

My first time to join RACE FOR LIFE this year and it was amazing! I ran 5K and I had the most wonderful time. Meeting people fighting cancer, people who lost their loved ones with cancer, and people simply supporting Cancer Research UK. Thank you to all my amazing friends who sponsored me. I raised £115 in total. I exceeded my target which was £100. Great day indeed! xx

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That’s what friends are for?

I have questioned the definition of ‘FRIENDSHIP’ since I have been treated unfairly, used for their own convenience, been talked about unjustly, and been bossed around constantly.

I am not perfect myself. I made a lot of mistakes in my life. Pleasing wrong people was one of my mistakes. I used to tolerate how they made me feel but then I’ve learned to fight. I’ve learned how to defend myself. I remember posting this Four Phantoms with Nicole Scherzinger on Facebook singing at the Royal Variety Show here in the UK, the next thing I knew, I was being belittled by an old colleague for appreciating it. That these celebrities are taking away theatre jobs from trained musical people. Yep, and I’m the one with a ‘small mind’?

I made myself proud the moment I stood up for myself after being trapped in a ‘one way friendship’ for years and from being looked down on by someone who always thought of herself ‘superior’. All these years I never felt inspired by her. Every time I called her, there were no praises or sympathy for me whether good or bad news. My husband always warned me about her, but I never listened and kept pleasing her instead.

True FRIENDS support each other, happy for each other. You don’t stab them in the back.

I knew I was not really being considered their friends when my daughter was not asked by her godmothers to be a flower girl. I was hurt by that snobbish gesture. Yes, I felt that we’re not friends at all because friends don’t do that. I felt that my daughter was not good enough for them. But we still went to that wedding even if it was kinda expensive for us. We paid for the present we were asked to sponsor. We were there to wish the couple. I still kept good friendship with them after that. Forgiveness is always practiced in my heart. Whenever they needed shelter in the UK whilst doing a show, they were welcome in my house. I still treated them nice.

I worked so hard to be good in what I do now. People trust and respect me in Bedford. I’m so proud of what I have achieved outside the performing world. I’m proud of doing fitness too, exercising to look after my health, not for vanity. I have a beautiful man who looks at me everyday like I’m the most beautiful woman in the world, who compliments me a lot, who shows his love unconditionally, and interesting to talk to. I have an intelligent and talented daughter. I love being in England. What more can I ask for?

I am not blaming social networks for falling out with a friend. Reconnecting with people you haven’t seen for many years is the hardest thing to do, but in this day and age we have the social networks that make it so easy to send messages to anyone. Scary to be honest. Everything in writing, less talking. And it allowed everybody to cross the line and DISRESPECT others. No matter how good your intention is, it will always be misinterpreted in writing. Sending a prayer is not considered a ‘chain letter’. A chain letter is something with a threat in the end if you don’t forward it to someone, but a prayer is a prayer. And even if you’re not religious to appreciate it, someone remembered you and prayed for you, and it doesn’t require a RUDE reply! If you treat your friend a friend, respect them, be kind with your words, inspire and support them.

The worst for me was finding out that my FULL name, Viven Mercado Noakes, was mentioned on her status, without me knowing it. Thanks to a few concerned friends who told me about it. You guys are my real friends. If she can do it to me, even as godmother of her daughter, then she can do it to anyone, remember that. She knew I have already removed her, so why do such thing to hurt me? Of course, to let the public know that I am the bad person and for her to get sympathy from people who dislike me. Their comments were viewed by thousands of people. You call them friends?

In this case, I’m not proud to have worked with such people.

I rest my case.

Goodbye Mum Jean…

 

Exactly one month after Grandad Ray left us, our beloved Mum/Nanny Jean joined him in heaven.

It was a lovely send off for Mum Jean last 4th December 2014 at the Breakspear Crematorium in Ruislip. Very simple but meaningful.
Thank you to all the relatives of Mum, who flew all the way from Ireland, travelled from Linconshire, and friends from London. So lovely to see you all.

Once again, we would like to thank all our friends who sent their condolences (for the second time), through my facebook posts, emails, text messages and cards. Reading your kind and inspiring words in times like this surely gave us more strength, love and light, knowing that we have such good friends around us. May you all continue to be a blessing to others and receive more blessings that you deserve. THANK YOU!

Mum, thank you for being such a loving mother-in-law. You have been my second mother for the last 16 years and I truly felt your care. Alyanna will miss her sweet and always fun to be with Nanny. She didn’t expect you to join Grandad so soon as she’s so looking forward to spending time with you this Christmas. Thank you for loving your only ‘apo’ so much.
Bob and Garry are very lucky to have you as their mother. You raised them both with so much love, care, and respect for you, and I have seen that. Your boys love you very much. Thank you Mum for everything. Rest in Peace.

Eternal rest grant unto Jean Banes’ soul O Lord,
And let your perpetual light shine upon her.
May her soul rest in peace.

We lift up to you O Lord our grief and sorrow, confident that you will change our mourning to rejoicing that our beloved Jean now rests in your peace. Amen

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Goodbye Chief!

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It was an emotional day for the family and special friends of Grandad Ray from Cottesmore House, who all came to honour his send off. Grandad’s wishes were respected – no religious service, no flowers, no singing. Only the American flag was there to symbolize his life in the U.S. Navy. It was simple, intimate, quiet, and actually very meaningful. Michael Gordon, who officiated the small ceremony, was very good as he read a brief life story of Ray and finished it with a beautiful poem by Henry Scott Holland. Robert Noakes (Bob), Garry’s older brother, spoke for the family and thanked everyone who came. Bob and Garry are just amazing esp in visiting their parents in two different nursing homes every week. After the short ceremony, the boys organised food and drinks at the pub across the crematorium. Unfortunately others had to go back to the Cottesmore House, whilst the family and a few friends stayed at the pub ’til evening. To all our family and friends who extended their condolences via cards, emails, text, and on Facebook, again, our heartfelt THANK YOU to all of you! Salamat po. xxx

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