Lumpia, ube, and pan de sal.

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Lola Mila (far left) and the family. ❤ Circa early 1990s.

Lola Mila’s been there for us since we were almost a year old. She came to the US in 1988. I learned a lot from her. Growing up, I always wanted to be by her side. Whether it was church, walking to the grocery store, or going to the park.

I can remember those school days. She would make us the best breakfast. Pan de sal with butter or cheese made on the stove top, chocolate milk, and sometimes champorado (Filipino chocolate rice porridge). During big family parties or the holidays, she would make her lumpia and ube. She taught me a lot about Filipino culture. Respect is at the top of the list. After school, I recall her always telling us to make sure we changed right away + preparing for school the night before.

I always got sad when she flew back to the Philippines from time to time. I found comfort knowing my maternal grandparents weren’t too far away. I also remember our family trips to Lake Tahoe, Disneyland, visiting relatives in Southern California (Long Beach and San Diego), Portland, and Seattle! Where did the time go? Those were some great times.

I do my very best to spend time with her. She means so much to me and I can say the same for my siblings and cousins. Lola Mila is resilient, patient, and kind. Thank you for being such a loving grandmother. You are always appreciated. Please teach me how to cook! Haha. 😛

Namumutan ta ka, Lola.

Bernadette

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