Living your life with a purpose


Live your life daily with a purpose! And if your life here on world lasts 100 years and more, then you have so much to be grateful for. Celebrating with Urdaneta Village’s most Senior resident, Manolo Carmona who turned 100 years old last December 14, I felt the overwhelming love and gratitude of his family and friends.

Family is keeping Tito Manoling still strong and sharp. His children – Mayenne Carmona, Annie and Thomas Kunhke, Ludette and JP Corcellut, Bing Carmona, Marisa and Steven Chan and Leana and Charlie Carmona hosted a wonderful celebration at the Urdaneta Village’s Friendship Hall where he used be the Sunday mass lecturer for so many years and is still a lay minister at mass. His wife, Josefa Ponce de Leon Carmona would’ve been married to him for 75 years this 2019. Unfortunately, she passed away 2 years ago. But, that was still an amazingly long married life together with 8 children (Yeng and Robert have passed away), 7 grandchildren and 3 great grandkids.

Friends and relatives from all over the world flew in to attend the children’s celebration of their Centenarian father. Commenting that it is so rare to attend a 100th birthday, everyone made sure not to miss such a momentous occasion! As indeed a celebration of life, the party started with a thanksgiving mass officiated by healing priest Fr. Fernando Suarez.

Attended by 170 friends and relatives, the special milestone celebration also had the centenarian’s golf buddies from Wack Wack all present.  After the touching speeches of long time friend Francis de Borja and Golden Tee Golf partner Vicky Schmid, Ramon Jacinto & his band kept the party swinging till it ended at midnight! 

Enjoying life in their 80s is also a wonderful reason to celebrate. My mother Marixi Rufino Prieto hosted a Christmas party for her Assumption High School Batch 1956. Several of them are celebrating their 80th birthday this 2019. This month alone, Sally de Leon Paz, Lirio Mapa and Vicky Cruz turn 80 years old and will celebrate with their families and close friends. 

Half a century is also a long time and another important milestone to celebrate! Top implant surgeon, GAOC’s Dr. Steve Mark Gan, celebrated a golden milestone as he marked his 50th birthday surrounded by his lovely wife Marilyn and kids, his GAOC family, closest friends, business and industry associates, industry partners, including his A-list patients at the Revel Bar in Taguig. 

Among the esteemed guests were Senators Koko Pimentel who came with his wife Kathryna, and Nancy Binay with husband Jose Benjamin Angeles. Drs. Z and Ivy Teo, as well as Cathy Valencia, and Dr. Darwin Lim.  Also present were SBS Philippines Corp. president Necisto Sytengco, PNB EVP Chet Luy, House of Investments president and CEO Lorenzo Tan. 

Of course, Dr. Gan’s celebration will not be complete without his celebrity patients and friends like Vina Morales, Sam Milby, Erich Gonzales, Ruffa Gutierrez, Coleen Garcia-Crawford, Janeena Chan and Gab Valenciano just to name a few. 

Global partners and associates also flew in to join the celebration, including Straumann’s Philip Neusche, Bangkok International Dental Center CEO Dr. Pornsak Tantapakul; top international dental surgeons like Dr. Warong Sukchotrat of Thailand, Dr. Lee Soon Boon of Malaysia, and Dr. TC Phua of Singapore; as well as businessmen Kevin Liang from Singapore and Norbert Emerich from Germany.

Taking the 1920s theme for his 41st birthday, Senator Manny Pacquiao celebrated his milestone at Makati Shangri-La Hotel. Coming in the rolling 20s’ glam fashion, guests marveled at the beautiful décor with numerous fresh red Ecuadorian roses and enjoyed flowing bubbly. Several cash prizes and two cars went to lucky guests that evening. 

Senator Manny usually celebrates in his hometown, General Santos but this year hosted a birthday party in Manila. The star-studded affair also had many political guests and ambassadors. Good friends Franklin and Jo Lim enjoyed entertainment from Side A band and many more.

From celebrating a 100-year old birthday, I conclude my column with the one-year old birthday party of Amos Garcia Arce, the cute son of Mitch Garcia and Ariel Arce. Marriott Philippines’ hardworking Cluster Director of Marketing Communications Mitch made sure all the party details were beautifully done and all the guests had lots to eat!   

Designed by event maestro Teddy Manuel, the ceiling was adorned with bespoke balloons and stunning light installations for a burst of stars overhead. For the theme Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Teddy flanked the ballroom’s entryway with a treatment of cutout stars and fairy lights that seemingly floated like stardust by the doorway, as if inviting guests into the night sky. Mirrored tables were adorned with glass candelabras and fresh blue Ecuadorian roses

Happy birthday to all those born on December, especially to our Lord Jesus! After all He is the reason for the season! For those still looking for last minute birthday gifts and Christmas presents, head to SMX Convention for the last of the Noel Bazaar 2019 that ends today. 

The SMX Convention Center Ribbon Cutting and Opening Ceremonies were attended by Dr. Alan Ortiz of Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation, Donita Rose of GMA Network Center, Justine Bautista of Cut Unlimited Inc., May Rodriguez of Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation, Althea Ablan, Sofia Pablo, and Sanya Lopez of GMA Network Center, Sandy Prieto-Romualdez, President and CEO of Philippine Daily Inquirer, Mel Tiangco, Ambassador of GMA Kapuso Foundation, Santa Claus, Mayose Gozon-Bautista, President of Cut Unlimited Inc., Rikki Escudero-Catibog of GMA Kapuso Foundation, and Solomon Yuyitung of Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation. Catch the veteran holiday bazaar series on their last leg at the SMX Convention Center until today. Bazaar hours are from 11am-9pm. 

Merry Christmas! 

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