Becoming Filipino

There is a common quote among my faith, “Come what may and love it.” I haven’t always loved living in The Philippines. It has definitely been a journey, one I am so grateful to be on. I am better because of it. My hope for A Momma Abroad both on social media and in person is to help others find happiness here. It may not be easy for some of you, but you will always find what you are looking for. While on this search for happiness I have found that the more I embrace the culture the deeper my roots sink and the more fulfilled I am. Although I am clearly not, part of me feels Filipino. It is a gift this country and culture have given to me, embracing me wholeheartedly. It might sound silly but a part of my heart will forever belong to The Pilipinas. So I dedicate this post to those who are Filipino or are on this journey to becoming Filipino.

I will follow Kyle’s lead of Becoming Filipino for this post. It may be kind of corny but whatever, I’m going for it.

You may becoming Filipino if you…

Are a pandesal addict.DSC02049

Are a suman, turon or hot tsokolat addict.

Are a mango addict.

A rice addict.

My little Pinoy boy going in for the rice.

Consume multiple varieties of bananas a day. 🙂 Here we have the perfect carbohydrate to protein ratio in the Saba variety.

IMG_6483Can make your own coconut milk. Bonus: eat it while doing the Pilipino squat. IMG_8317Eat a whole fish. Except the eyes. I just can’t do that yet. My American side keeps telling me no.

Can remove the shrimp peel like a boss. I don’t do it well but I can peel it na! But again, my American side refuses to eat shrimp heads, maybe in a few years. IMG_5902Eat with a spoon and forkIMG_5588IMG_8089Crave Filipino breakfast before you take home leave in America. IMG_4564You double fist ice candy.IMG_1845You eat queso and ube ice cream…and like it. IMG_3873

Prefer the wet market for its vibrant colors and cheap prices.

Stop for monay on your walk home. IMG_4563Have a favorite bakery. IMG_3981Have a sorbetero in your hood. IMG_4446See your food in the sea first. DSC03887You may becoming Filipino if you find your kid at the neighbors using a machete to open a coconut. IMG_7190One of your babies first words is paa. IMG_6642If your kid’s school requires a toothbrush and paste. South East Asia wins for oral hygiene after eating. The American in me will never get over the brushing of teeth in public restrooms. Maybe for my next Becoming Filipino post. IMG_7558

Your kid uses a tabo like a boss.

Make your own walis tingting. IMG_7177Get excited when this very sanitary and nice toilet greets you on your road trip. You may becoming Filipino if you have to remind yourself to flush the toilet paper when you visit America instead of throw it in the rubbish bin. IMG_4271This doesn’t stop you from shopping at a favorite marketIMG_2233Get excited about the Dry Section and the hum of the sewing machines. IMG_4907Your choice of Christmas decorations now include parols and this doesn’t even phase you when they are out in September. IMG_6474No number of parols is too many parols, right? DSC03359Get overly involved in your child’s Christmas contest at school. We all know this is only for the parents. IMG_7250You may becoming Filipino if you have a balloon guy…IMG_4988A leather guy…IMG_6245A towel guy…IMG_2614A hasa guy…DSC00600

A barber and masseuse all in one…


A pedicurista/manicurista…

A pearl pusher.IMG_2339

Sing karaoke and don’t care how bad you are because this is an innate part of your culture and it makes you happy. Joke lang. You guys are great singers, I am not. IMG_3710Live in taxis or Ubers with no restraint system. (We now have our own car with great restraint systems. Wahoo!)IMG_7478Your kids have playdates on trikes. IMG_4143Your pasalubong for family in America looks like this. IMG_2611Return home from The U.S. like this. (Of course we all know real Filipino’s have like 10 of these.) IMG_5352Your kid performs a singing and dance number in front of a few hundred people for their year end program. DSC06845Your kid asks for a towel in the back of his shirt. IMG_4410

Your child knows what Mano is and blesses the neighbor’s driver. IMG_4074

Finally have a barkada.

A Filipino publication, Real Living, proclaims you might as well be Filipino with all your DIY projects. (I was over the moon.) Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 9.40.00 AM

Have a yaya who is more family than employee. We love you magical Chanda Poppins! IMG_1531

This video cracked me up. Go and watch it and see how Filipino you are. 🙂

*You can videos of my kids blessing our neighbors, counting in Tagalog and speaking in a Filipino accent on my Instagram account: amommabroad.

25 Comments Add yours

  1. Eileen says:

    I just love your blog. You are more Pinoy than some of us. If I ever get a chance to meet you I will definitely have to give you a warm hug for loving our country so much. Reading this post just made my day, salamat 🙂


    1. amber says:

      Eileen, thank you so much for your readership and kind words. It gives me the encouragement to keep on going. You da best. Xo


  2. Chessy says:

    Your boys are too adorable! Such a great post, Amber! Thanks for always making us see the positive in being Filipinos!


    1. amber says:

      Ah Chessy means so much that you read and for your kind words. Maraming Salamat po.


  3. Anjali Kumar says:

    Always such an enjoyable read…. And some many things that we take for granted. Loved it. Thank you


    1. amber says:

      Thanks so much for your kind words and reading.


  4. Sarah says:

    I love this post! Glad to know you are loving and enjoying our country! Makes me prouder to be Pinoy! 😊😊😊


    1. amber says:

      You should be proud! A lovely country and culture. Thanks for reading and commenting. Pinoy ako!


  5. Juliana says:

    Found your blog through Ma’am Manila… this post was fantastic! Made me smile even though I’m not yet familiar with some things (we just moved to Manila from NY a few weeks ago). Your posts are very helpful and are poking me with curiosity to go out and take advantage of this great opportunity of living in such a lovely country and enjoying every aspect of it… what an amazing adventure for the kids also! Would be lovely to meet you one day and get some more of your tips and insights face to face! Great job!


    1. amber says:

      You are awesome! You already have such a good perspective, you will thrive here. Thanks so much for the kind words. Hope we do meet one day. This expat community is so small I am sure we will.


  6. Nice blog! thank you for loving and enjoying our culture 🙂 hope one day will bump into you and your kids and …. maybe eat some taho! 😉


    1. amber says:

      Haha I would love to eat some taho with our kids. Thanks for appreciating my love. I really do! You’re so lucky you’re Filipino. Xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Have you tried taho? You’re so much welcome! 🙂 xoxo :* :* your kids are so adorable too! 😉


  8. Christie Ines says:

    It’s my first time reading your blog, but I am an avid Instagram follower! I love your posts/ stories. Fish and rice on!


    1. amber says:

      Yay! Maraming Salamat po Christie!


  9. Myerz24 says:

    This blog touches my heart. You have noticed alot of things that are normal for us but didn’t realize it’s actually so pinoy! The towel in the back cracked me up!

    I love your house! I hope I have your creativity. Avid IG follower here. Thanks Amber!


    1. amber says:

      Oh my goodness, what a sweet comment to wake up. You’ve just rejuvenated me. I was starting to feel a bit discouraged, unsure where to go next. Thanks for the push of help. I am so appreciative. Maraming Salamat po.


      1. Myerz24 says:

        No worries! We all sometimes need a pick me up even from a stranger. I’m sure you followers feel the same way when they see your posts when they feel discouraged. You actually make us proud to be pinoys. Cheer up and all the best!


  10. earvinwaslo says:

    OHHH MY GUUUUHS!!1 ❤ ❤


  11. acircusmind says:

    Your kids are so cute. Looks like they are having so much fun. Thanks for loving the Philippines. The word Filipinophile should exist now because of people like you.


    1. amber says:

      Ah thank you! Hahaha, I love that word! I will now add it to my vocabulary. 😂


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