Trying to grow old gracefully like my parents | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

How does one get to the age of 90 and still remain as sharp and dynamic as the younger generation? All of a sudden, I have become more conscious of growing older gracefully.

The strong and inspiring business leader, Washington SyCip, turned 90 just last week, and then a few thereafter, my hubby Dennis turned 50. Our good friend Wash hosted several dinners to welcome his new decade and had feng shui expert Marites Allen do his life blessings ceremony. We wish him continued health and happiness.

A long time ago, I thought 50 would be an age of wisdom and maturity, and probably the average age of many grandfathers. My parents Alex and Marixi had their first apos in their 50s, and now, after being married 50 years, have 14.88 grandchildren. (We are all waiting for my brother Paolo and his wife, Ria, to have their third child next month.) Truly, we have lots of celebrations and blessings to be very grateful for.

Golden anniversary

For Mom and Dad’s golden wedding anniversary, they chose an intimate celebration with just close family members and friends. It was simply the grandkids that marched down the aisle, with the Golden Couple at the end.

At the elegant dinner party, I was able to arrange for crooner Arthur Manuntag to serenade the guests as my Dad sang a duet with him. Arthur is a favorite singer of Dad’s, and thanks to his special request, Arthur was kind enough to perform a few beautiful songs for us.

No anniversary celebration is done without some participation from homegrown, talented grandchildren, and the apos did not disappoint the crowd. Siblings and spouses are also required to sing and dance. We left the singing to my brother-in-law, Philip Romualdez, as that talent is missing amongst my siblings and I. Although we miss our late brother Louie, we are happy when we are close to complete, as the times when my brother Andrew and family can come visit from the US.

It’s amazing to see how we are all aging gracefully as the years pass. Dennis and I constantly engage in swimming or running, and all the sweaty stuff in between, to make sure we maintain a very healthy lifestyle.


One of our key supporters has been Adidas, which has just launched adizero, their latest and lightest oh-so-comfortable footwear. The new Adidas F50 adizero Prime is designed for football enthusiasts and the adizero Feather tennis shoe keep players stable and quick.

Over the summer, Adidas hosted a 24-hour shindig, Adidas All24, at the Eastwood grounds. Encompassing many different categories, from basketball, football and running to skateboarding, graffiti, dance, music and fashion, the event proudly showcased talents wearing Adidas.

Rexona Adventure

Just watching the break-dancing moves of world-renowned choreographer Norman Shay made my back ache. Break-dancing is clearly not for me so I am sticking to running! I will definitely use my Adidas for the upcoming Rexona Run on July 24. The Rexona Adventure 2011 has several activities in places ranging from the SM Mall of Asia to Bohol and Cagayan.

Unilever executives Cindy Melocoton, Liza Vengco and Nikki Abella, all joined Rexona brand manager Anne Remulla and SM’s Louie Lao as they launched Rexona Men Adventure. RunRio president Rio de la Cruz is heading the Rexona Run as the fourth leg in the RunRio Series. Lots of cash prizes, medals and bragging rights, and a chance to win an adventure to the Great Wall of China are in store for all runners. Visit or Rexona Philippines’ Facebook page for more details.

Unilever also donated a ton of prizes for my Pirate in Temptation Island party last night. Lots of great-looking pirates are now so happy after taking home their great-smelling deodorant sticks.

The fun thing about the theme “pirates” is it covers so many décor possibilities. From skulls and crossbones to treasure chests to fairy dust and mermaid tails, it is all endless.

‘Back to Skull’

Swatch, for example, came up with “Back to Skull,” just in time for school opening. The pun-intended event featured the latest collection of Swatch, the hip, Swiss, fashion, watch-maker and jeweler. Swatch grand dame Virgie Ramos told me she coined the phrase herself.

The very popular Swatch Full-Blooded Collection was the inspiration for the ongoing exhibit of Jerome Lorico. The collection includes trendy 10 new models in straight-off-the-catwalk colored dials with rugged aluminum bezels and bracelets with Swatch Bijoux skull pendants to complement the collection that is rocking the club scene.

With her usual minute attention to detail, Virgie attended to everything to make sure the Swatch experience is overwhelming. Rushing from our taping of “Temptation Island,” my fun partner-in-crime Tim Yap and I enjoyed a quick peep and speedy dinner at Swatch while simultaneously watching the “American Idol” Season 10 finale.

Swatch always has nonstop  themed parties and product launches. From skulls to Japanese anime, check out their Hiroyuki Matsuura Cosplay Swatch watches—six designs from the hottest-selling Strawberry Switchblade to hot racing wrist accessory, Transmission.

The Swatch group is abound with creative energy. But they also know how to share their blessings. There are special Swatch watches specifically designed for Assumption College, UP and ICA, available at any Swatch Store in the country.

For orders of the Assumption watches, contact the Assumption Alumnae Association. From the sales, a generous donation of P350,000 was presented to the members of Assumption HS Class of ’88—Grissel Gomez, Maricar Tiangco and Mary Faye Garcia. It’s all for the benefit of the various Assumption Mission Schools around the country.

Sharing blessings is one way of keeping young. Feng shui expert Marites told me to have Dennis release birds because by liberating them, you save a life from dying, thus passing the good chi to you. He’s not really the superstitious type though, so I will have to do the releasing on his behalf!

Follow Tessa on Twitter @tessavaldes or email her at

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