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Mygrandmother, Paz, turned two years shy of 100 on January 24, 2013! What better way to show how much we love Mama Epas than by giving something which she hasn’t received in the past ninety-eight years of her life? A four-by-three tarpaulin with greetings from all of us, that is.She caught us off guard, because we thought she wouldn’t like the cake we ordered (or anything sweet). I put it on her lap with a sole purpose to have her photo taken, but she devoured nearly half of the mass and said, “It’s not every day that I could eat something like this.”

We’re so happy to see her gobbling the cake like there’s no tomorrow. The amount of sugar had no time to shorten Mama Epas’s life, because she’s in tiptop shape and has always lived a healthy life by eating right. No way! She was a fisherwoman until the age of eighty-plus, when we insisted that she put a stop to her occupation because she’s not getting any younger already. And no matter how much more sweetness is there in the cakes that we are going to order or bake for her many more birthdays to come, all those years she went paddling at sea and catching fishes to cook for our breakfast, lunch, and supper could never be equalled at any rate.

“Thank you, Lord, for such a wonderful grandmother as Mama Epas! May you continue to bless her with more peace inside and out, more love from all of us around her, more energy and inspiration to live life to the fullest, and better health.”

We’re proud of her for all that she is and everything that she does. But if there’s one significant thing that we’re proudest, it’s her constant communication to, and consistent rapport with, God. She talks to Him by her lonesome, praying more often than not for protection against evil and his allies. Now we know why she’s already 98 and very much excited as she vies for the crown of Centennial Queen . . . in two years, God willing.