It's Our Third Birthday!

This issue marks our third year of putting out Positively Filipino. We'd like to thank all of you -- our talented writers, our loyal readers and our advertisers -- for your unwavering support as we gather stories of Filipinos all over the world and share them with you. We hope this magazine has created a community of kindred spirits proud and happy to be Filipino wherever they may be,  whatever their circumstance and citizenship. Our staff of four is grateful for all the words of encouragement, the accolades and the prizes that have been sent our way. We are truly humbled and inspired. 

Have you ever wondered how you got your surname? If you go back several generations, chances are it was assigned to your ancestors through some random act or event when the Philippines was still under Spanish friar rule. Regular contributor Dr. Penelope V. Flores uses her obsession for onomastics (new word of the day - look it up!) to trace the origin of Filipino surnames and comes up with some pretty interesting insights. Read "How Filipinos Got Their Surnames" and learn.

Check out our delicious new masthead when you click on "Flour Power," the feature of Contributing Writer Rey E. de la Cruz on the Palasigue brothers of Morton Grove, Illinois. Jojo and Jing own and operate Cakes 'n Crumbs Gourmet Bakeshop, and graciously offered to come up with a cake with the Positively Filipino logo. It looked inviting and though we never tasted it, I'm sure it's as good as the brothers' reputation for gourmet cakes, pastries and other baked goods. Jing Palasigue's own Brazo de Mercedes recipe is our offering for the Happy Home Cook this week so even if you're not in Chicago, you can bake yourself one of their bestselling products. Let us know how it goes.

We've published almost 500 stories and we'd like to re-post some of them for you to Read Again. "The First Quarter Storm Was No Dinner Party," a two-parter by prominent Filipino writer Jose F. Lacaba, takes us back to Philippine history during the tumultuous early '70s.

"Love Baskets for Betty"  is a heartwarming backgrounder on some of the handmade collectible baskets created by Jose Formoso Reyes, and won for Contributing Writer Myles A. Garcia a Plaridel Award for feature writing.

Our Video of the Week: Miss Universe Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach shows that she's indeed worthy of the title in her first interview on ABC's Good Morning America.

Gemma Nemenzo

Editor, Positively Filipino