Dream Big My Little Ones: To my son and daughter.

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To my son,

Just the thought of putting down words that you will someday read brings tears to my eyes. There is so much I want to say and so much I want to share with you…

Let’s start with telling you that I have always wanted to have a little prince. When I found out that you were no longer a figment of my imagination and you were really coming, I was over the moon. To think in nine short months I would get to meet you. I have to tell you… my journey is different than most, but that is okay because that’s what gets us to today. And every single day is such a beautiful day.

Sweetie, you and your spirit inspired me to make some important decisions and quickly. I decided that I can continue to be sad and feel bad for you or I could make the right choice and give you the best life that I know how and teach you that your differences are not weaknesses but strengths. And that may not make a lot of sense. Well, I have a secret to tell you. Before you were even born I realized something very special about you. Something that I struggled day after day to find the perfect word to explain…

You, my dear, are extraordinary. When our family, friends, communities and even strangers found out about you… they were moved. You wiggled your way into their hearts and were determined to never leave. You reminded them about what is important in life. You made them believers in triumph and how obstacles can be overcome. You showed them the importance of “compassionate love” and you encouraged them to reach out to us. You strengthened their faith and reminded them how God takes care of us all no matter what. You showed us how much we can rely on others and how much people care. You made us believe in each other and most importantly… in you.

You see, you have already touched so many lives… and all before your first breath of air. God has such big plans for you and your life.  Never forget that. You were put here on Earth for a very divine purpose, you started fulfilling that purpose before you could have ever known.  Just as your baby sister & I feel we have an obligation to share your story with the world and teach people about accepting and celebrating differences, we feel you have an obligation to touch peoples’ lives too. And the amazing thing is… all you have to do is be yourself and give a little smile.

We are not going to tell you that your journey is going to be easy.  There are going to be times when you will wish you were like everyone else.  You may be sad and you may wonder why this was your fate.  Just know that it is okay to have those feelings.  We will always be here for you with a handful of those surrounding us ready to love and support you in whatever you may need.  Nothing in life worth living for was ever easy.  And how do you become the person you want to become without opportunities to be challenged along the way?  Embrace these challenges and know you will be better for it.  Not to spoil the ending… but your journey is unfolding exactly as it should be and everything is going to be okay.  Better than okay.

And just remember, your sister and I, family, friends and the Lord God above loves you deeply just the way you are.  And we want you to love you just the way you are too.  Be of good courage and He will strengthen your heart (Psalms 31:24).  All that matters is what is in your heart.  Fill your heart with joy and it will spill over onto everyone else.  Know that you are so blessed and God has given you so many talents.  It is up to you to unlock the doors to those talents and let them come out to play.  You are capable of wonderful things.  Yes you are… we have already witnessed it.

And what you do in this world is up to you.

“If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it.”
~ William Arthur Ward

So as you go through life, hold your head up high and feel confident in knowing just how extraordinary you are.  For before you were even born you were so loved by so many.  Never before was there ever a YOU in this world. YOU are the one everyone is excited to meet.  You were called a miracle, inspiration, prince and a blessing by so many people before you ever opened your eyes.  You will always be a symbol of hope, of love and of life.  But to me & your sister, you will always be… our hero.  And love you we will… always and forever… to infinity and beyond.

XOXO, Nanay

To my daughter,

From the moment I knew you were going to be the baby princess, my heart rejoiced for you.  What an honor in life to get to grow up with with the title of “little sis.”  With this title comes lots of happy things: lots of freebies, fun and the occasional squabble.  (Occasional is me being optimistic here.)  Well let me tell you… the key to being a good little sister is that word love. All little sisters are responsible for teaching, helping and loving their big brothers.  And I have no doubt in my mind that you will embrace these tasks wholeheartedly.

But, ‘Gel… there is something else you should know.  Your brother isn’t like other big brothers.  He is fragile, and he needs a lot more care and attention than you and he will always be that way.  When you were still young, you didn’t even notice.  But there will come a time in your life when you will understand that your big brother is different.   What I want you to know is that different doesn’t mean anything other than that.  In our house, different will always be said with a smile.  Different will always define who we are and we will take on that word with pride.  Different will never mean wrong or bad.  Different is beautiful.

And as your big brother’s little sister, that word love and responsibility will take on more meaning.  You see, he will be loved by you and he will look up to you.  You will be such an influence in his life now and always.  Know that if you show him respect, so will others.  You are such a natural-born leader, I know that you will have no problems in leading the charge.  But this is your journey too.  And I know that some days are going to be harder than others.  But I promise to always be here for you.  And so will be your family, relatives, friends, and so many others.

Over the course of your seven years here on Earth, you have surprised many people… especially me.  There have been many wonderful words people have used to describe you, but the one I hear on a daily basis is: smart.  And just as it is every parents’ duty to discover their child’s talents… we feel we already know yours.  ‘Gel, your ability to remember and learn and teach are talents that God has blessed you with.  Don’t think this happened by accident.  You should know that God doesn’t work that way.  He gave you these talents for a reason and He will reveal His purpose for you.

I want to educate everyone one day at a time about what it is that makes your brother different and how we can all learn something from that.  We hope you allow your experiences to light your way… sharing your story and moving others’ to be better.  You were given a gift, just like your brother, to have the ability to change the world.

More than anything… your big brother & I feel so blessed to have you as our baby princess.  You have taught us what it means to love even when your heart feels like it couldn’t possibly hold any more love, it expands in a way to make room for more.  Your smile melts our worries away and your laugh makes us wonder if there is anything in life that sounds sweeter.  Thank you for being a light in our lives and we look forward to watching you shine on and on as you wish upon your star.  We love you so much!

XOXO, Nanay

❤ ❤ ❤

P.S. Here’s a song I used to listen to when you were still little babies. It gave me strength and encouragement to go on with life amidst all the strugles and challenges. I will catch a unicorn for you if I could. You’re my bubbly little man and beautiful lady, I hope you will never change. Life has so much to offer you, I know. I love you both more than anything else in this world. You make my life this complete. You are both my life’s greatest pleasures all rolled up into one.

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Find Yourself Before You Find Love

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“Waking up to who you are requires letting go of who you imagine yourself to be.” ~Alan Watts

After a few years of living through the betrayal and anger of my ex husband, my friends decided it was time for me to start dating again.

They took me out to the bars, dressed me up, bought me drinks, and showed all the men how cute I was.

I didn’t feel cute. I felt like a fraud.

The bar scene was not for me. I felt like a piece of meat wrapped in cellophane on the shelf waiting for a man to decide which one he’d like to eat.

I dressed up in my newly skinny body and looked the part of the fun loving girl, but inside all I felt was desperation.

I put on make up so men would think I was pretty.

I went through tortures of pilates exercise so my body would look good for others to gaze at.

I smiled and giggled so men would think I was fun and funny.

I didn’t feel fun, funny, pretty, or like I wanted to be looked at. I felt scared.

I kept grasping at a portrait of who I wanted everyone to think I was. I so wanted to be this picture perfect representation that I thought men wanted. I wanted a man to like me so I could feel loved and validated.

I finally realized my imaginary self-portrait was who others wanted, not who I wanted to be now. I was not being true to my new self.

So I trashed the portrait, went home, and got my act together.

I wanted to find love again but not like this. Not by picking up someone in a bar who was looking for love in all the wrong places, just like I was doing. I needed to learn to love myself, because no one else could do it for me.

I wanted to find love by knowing who I was. Then I could find someone who complemented me. So I stopped going out and started to learn who I was, what I wanted in life, and what I deserved in a man.

What I did learn from speaking to men in bars is that real men want real women. I decided to learn how to be real. Learning how to be real would require some investigative research on my part. I had lost myself in my marriage. It was time to find me.

I decided to step out of my proverbial box. I had to try new things and figure out what activities I liked, and which ones I needed to stay away from.

I travelled to developing rural areas. I had my palm read and visited a mind reader. I went food tripping, took up yoga, learned to meditate, hiked on volcanoes, rode zip lines through the forest, joined book clubs, learned to meditate, I found out what tai chi was.

I started to visit international restaurants. I went to museums and hung out in coffee shops. I got into my first Wattpad organization and started to get active. I tried things I had always wanted to do but never could while I was married.

I had fun. I learned that I favored Chinese food over Italian food. I learned that I can forget all the troubles in the world whenever I bake. I learned things about me I never knew.

I stopped wearing most of the make up I had worn thinking it made me look good so men would like me. Instead I decided to look good for myself.

I stared at myself in the mirror and told myself over and over that I am beautiful, even though I didn’t believe it. The more I told myself I was beautiful, the more I began to feel good about myself.

I wanted my beauty to be defined by my self-confidence that began to return when I started to truly believe in what I began to represent.

I started to dress the way I wanted to feel, not the way I wanted to be looked at. I wanted free flowing clothes that I could move in. I wanted to be able to feel my body, not the clothes pinching me.

I started to exercise because it made me feel good, not so I would look good. I accomplished both by doing what I wanted for me, not for them. I found exercise that I loved to do. I increased my pilates exercise and kept on walking, even planning to try rowing and biking.

I stopped going to bars to meet men. Instead, I went to the occasional hang outs with friends.

I stopped looking at men as the answer to my problems and started looking at me to solve them.

I realized that to find a man that had the same interests I had, I better know what my interests are.

When I learned what I liked, I became happier than I had ever been before. I learned to be true to me, not someone else.

I realized that I had been incomplete without the knowledge to define my own boundaries, my likes, and my dislikes. Without knowing what my boundaries were, I would never attract a person into my life that could live within my boundaries. I had never known how to define and stand up for my own beliefs.

When I felt confident with my new self, it was then that I became ready with a new steady omnipresent love. He just knocks me off my feet, but he also teaches me that I am already far better educated to know how it pays to wait for that right timing specifically for what I wanted and how I wanted to be treated. It was far better than telling someone to take me on a romantic date, when I couldn’t define what I thought a romantic date was.

So get on with it, what are you waiting for? Get out there and experience the beauty of life. Find out who and what you are. Live life by yourself; be happy by yourself. It’s your life; make it what you want. Don’t look for someone else to do it for you, because they can’t. Only you can know who you really are.

 

P.S. here’s a lovely playlist I made a year before I even met him which by the way gave me true inspiration that I have right now, hoping it would also give inspiration to others out there. XOXO

 

An Open Letter To The Girl Who Waits

 

You deserve the best. I mean it with all my heart, with all my soul. A soul mate;  someone who we are beyond thrilled to meet. We are thrilled to know where we will meet them, how we will meet them and most importantly, what they are like. We wonder if we will meet them in college or in a place we aren’t even aware exists yet. In the absolutely cheesiest way possible, we are thrilled to know whose name will be beside ours on our wedding invitations, whose name will be beside ours on our child’s birth certificate, whose pillow will be beside ours come morning. We are thrilled to know our soul mate, but let’s start being thrilled without anxiety. Let’s start being thrilled while resting in who our God is. Let’s be thrilled knowing that if they are indeed our soul mate, our souls will indeed mate.

We love to fall in love. We love to be liked, to be noticed, to be desired. I am not talking about young girls in general. I am not even talking about women in general. I am talking about human beings in general. We love to love and even more, love to be loved. Our problem today is that we are settling. We are settling for men that hold doors behind them instead of in front of them. We are settling for surface level relationships when we should be seeking deeper conversations, deeper moments. We are settling for, “talking,” for “things” when we should have an, “if you know, you know, let’s do something about this or I’ll be on my way,” kind of mindset. We are texting. We are snapchatting. We are liking each others’ Instagram posts. Let’s not settle for social media flirtation. If they really like you, they will like the real you more than the social media you. We are settling for a twenty-first century relationship when we should be seeking an everlasting love.

 

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We should not be throwing in the towel simply because we realize they snort when they laugh, sing too loudly in the car or snore when they sleep. We are people. We are a lovely mess and masterpiece all at once. We should not be expecting a man without flaws, as he should not be expecting a woman without them. We should not be giving up because we are fighting every once in a while. Because in every relationship worth something, there will be fights about anything and everything. We should not be giving up because the other person in the relationship is simply human. We should not be expecting a perfect man, but a respectable and loving one.

We should be expecting a gentleman. We should be expecting men who come from women who have raised them right and not settling for anything less. We should be expecting treatment fueled from our God’s love for us and not our generation’s standards. There is no perfect man out there, but there is man who will be perfect for you. There is a laugh that will create a beautiful harmony when aligned with yours. There are eyes that will tear up when they view you in a white dress. There are hands that will hold you when you have had enough and feet that will dance with you in the kitchen on a Monday night.

 

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Love is a two way street. We should be treated how we have desired to be treated throughout our whole lives and also be willing to return this treatment to them as well. You cannot expect a breathtaking love story if he is the only one writing it, nor should he expect one if you are the only author. Don’t believe the lies the world tries to tell you when you begin to believe that a kind, passionate and Christ like man is unrealistic. Do not believe them when they tell you, you are living in a fantasy world, because you crave a more meaningful relationship than the rest of the world. You simply have higher standards than the others and you will one day see the great gift of high standards convert into a high valued relationship.

Relationships end. We cannot be looking forward to a full life while simultaneously looking forward to a life of no heartbreak, no heartbreaking and no lessons learned. They end, you cry, you hurt, you go on. . They often end solely because it was not meant to be. Maybe your senses of humor do not line up. That’s no one’s fault. Maybe you’re too outgoing for him. That’s no one’s fault. On the other hand, relationships have the potential of ending when one or two involved in the relationship were not putting in their best effort. There is the option of settling when you are putting in 100% while he is putting in 20% at most. There is the option of seeing what is in front of you, being too scared that no one else will love you like they do, and staying out of fear. When you settle, your sadness, your absence of fulfillment, your emptiness is no longer his problem, it is yours. Yes, blunt and rough; it is yours. We can blame others mistakes and lack of love on them, but when we stay in these places of comfort, we are hurting ourselves more.

 

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You do not deserve a twenty-first century  relationship. You don’t deserve a relationship centered on read receipts or likes on social media. You deserve a relationship centered on Love, a relationship centered on something greater than the two of you combined. You do not deserve to be cheated on, under any circumstances, ever. You deserve someone who would never think of leaving you, seriously. You deserve to be appreciated, not judged for the intelligent, beautiful, worthy of love, human that you are. You don’t deserve to be embarrassed by rude tipping habits. You deserve to be proud of all that your partner is. You do not deserve to feel like the only one in the relationship. You deserve to feel like there is another person, also putting 100% in on the other side. You don’t deserve a car honk or a text. You deserve a doorbell ring. You do not deserve to be treated less than. You deserve to be treated like the most important human in the world.

Do not sell yourself short. Do not be afraid. Because if it is not who you are with, someone is even better. No matter how hard that is to believe, God’s greatest gifts are upgrades. Know that if he won’t, someone else will. If he won’t treat you like you believe you should be and desire to be treated, that does not mean that no one ever will. You should not feel like you are settling at any point. If you are settling, you are better off alone. If he is unfaithful, you are better off alone. If he is treating you in a way below your expectations and your standards, you are better off alone.

 

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Know that if he isn’t kind to waiters, there is someone who is. If he doesn’t shake hands and make good eye contact, there is someone who does. If he doesn’t pull your chair out for you, someone else will. If he cancels on you often, there is someone who will be there ten minutes early. If he is constantly red faced and yelling, there is someone who finds no need to do so. If he doesn’t walk you to the door because it is too outdated, know there is someone who believes the exact opposite. If he doesn’t remember small details, know there is a relationship in which you will find yourself surprised as to how much they know about you. If he doesn’t go out of his way, know there is someone else who will.

If you wouldn’t marry them, don’t date them. That’s one of my biggest pieces of advice from my seventeen year old single self. If you wouldn’t want to wake up to their face personality, each day, seven days a week, for the rest of your life, don’t waste your time now. If you wouldn’t want your kids to be just like them, don’t waste your time now. Wait for someone you would never associate the word, “settle,” with. Wait instead of settling. Wait because there is someone who will look at you in a way you didn’t know was possible. Wait because there is something greater, a relationship between soul mates, and not just, “loved to be loved,” young people. Wait because there is someone who would never allow you to settle. Wait patiently with love because if he won’t, someone else will. ♥

 

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My Journey To #EatPrayLove (Ep.1)

Was in Durian City with my foodie friends over the weekend; and of course, a large part of our trip was devoted to food tripping at local restos. I had stumbled upon Lyndon’s on the Facebook account of my foodie enthusiast balikbayan friend who visited Davao City during his vacation break early July, and was immediately intrigued by the name.

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Wait….what? Did I read it right?

What self-respecting restaurant would call its ribs the “world’s worst” and its chicken “awful”?

Of course, yours truly-ly just had to investigate. So we set off one evening, hailing a taxi which took us to the downtown part of Davao City. Truth be told, the area looked rather sketchy (one of my Manileño foodie friends who came with us even said it’s like being along C.M. Recto in Manila at night); and Lyndon’s turned out to be a more unassuming establishment than we had thought.

Check out their funny and interestingly unique menu for more imaginatively (and self-deprecatingly) named dishes:

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Here’s the eponymous ribs, and you can specify the quantity you wanted to order:

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Lyla’s (Lyndon’s girlfriend/wife, perhaps?) the “Awful Chicken”:

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The two varieties of “Tasteless Pancit”, represent!

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Hail to the ever so “Disgusting Tilapia”:

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And finally, Han’s Horrible Spicy Mechado and Leonardo’s Rubbish Caldereta:

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Obviously we got curious and so we asked the waiter why their dishes were named as such. He admitted that it was really to downplay or lessen the customers’ expectations of their food. Hmm nice (I’ve read somewhere in Entrepreneur magazine that you have to plan already your exit strategy for your company from day one, so I’m guessing this could be their way of guerilla marketing) but still, oh well, maybe there is something to be said about this particular strategy.

Ah so this is my favorite part, we quickly dug in once our orders came in.  Here’s the ribs, which looked really appetizing rather than being the world’s worst (just take a closer look at that):

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Here’s my order of awful chicken (rather, looks scrumptiously juicy):

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Oh what else can I say on this serving of “Fish Be With You”, pretty please?:

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Long life to the humongous plate of their “Tasteless Pancit Canton”:

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Here’s my kaluuurky friend Zarah’s handful of “Tadyang ni Ruby”:

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And, finally (play the Chinese chau gong please) here’s their delicious serving of THE “Leonardo’s Rubbish Caldereta”:

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Oh yes most definitely, we were all hungry alright. ^_^

One thing you can say about THE food is that it’s the complete opposite of the restaurant’s name. Their dishes really proved to be quite tasty, definitely nowhere near being the worst in the world, and good value for money too!

Our guest foodie even said they have the best ribs he had ever tasted and rivals the one in Racks Tomas Morato QC. Another foodie in our group surmised that the ribs were marinated in Sprite (soda), which helped account for its delicious taste. It has that sweet (but not overpowering) barbecue sauce, and the meat is just so soft that it literally falls off the bones, truly amazing!  The chicken was also very tasty as well as the Tadyang ni Ruby (technically lechon kawali). The tasteless pancit canton is not tasteless at all, it was brimming with lots of healthy yummy vegetables and in fact the serving was so big we even had leftovers for BH.

The one thing we didn’t like was the Papaitan (photo not shown) but the rest was superb! I would have eaten in here every weekend if my companions allowed it (but they didn’t, so..). Our total bill was just around Php900+ which was not bad for 6-8 people with huge appetite. If you are going to Davao, definitely stop by at this place and try their food. You would miss half of your life if you didn’t, no kidding!

Wait there’s more….check out Lyndon’s colorful decor as well:

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What can I say? There’s definitely good strategy to this owner’s madness ;-D

So with a happy, bulging tummy we set off to find a coffee place. We saw one nearby named New Orleans Cafe. My foodie friend ordered the Bailey’s Coffee, which costs 120php, but oh it wasn’t that good (sorry). It does taste like the alcohol drink Bailey’s but it lacks the taste of coffee. They have a variety of food, not just deserts and coffee but even main courses. We wanted to try their cakes but we were still so full from the ribs attacking that we just did.

Later on, everyone decided to try the last minute dessert before going home. Light bulb struck me again as I thought of the Facebook account I’ve mentioned earlier about my foodie enthusiast balikbayan friend who visited Davao City during his vacation break. And so….we hailed a taxi en route to MTS (that’s Matina Town Square, by the way) for a much-deserved deliciously creamy halo-halo treat at Aling Foping’s Halo-Halo Atbp. ❤

Indeed, Davaoeños have greatly equated the word “halo-halo” to Aling Foping’s establishment. I have been to Matina Town Square several times before but I was not convinced to visit their humble food-place until just recently (it took some convincing photo powers from my balikbayan friend to make that happen) just take a look at that lovely shot he made:

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Aling Foping’s has a cool concept because you can customize your halo-halo! Isn’t it just amazing? In most restaurants that serve halo-halo, they have a single recipe for all. But this one is different because you get to choose your own ingredients. You will basically fill up a small form wherein you can pick from a wide range of available ingredients and then they’d prepare your halo-halo for you! No need to deal with ingredients you don’t like because every bite consists of only the ingredients you picked yourself (again, this is a nice concept of guerilla marketing huh, don’t you think?)

The regular halo-halo is currently priced at Php85 while a special halo-halo will set you back at Php105. Ingredients that you can choose from include the following: gulaman, kaong, langka, macapuno, nata de coco, pinipig, red mongo, saba, sago, white beans, and a serving each of ube and leche flan. Of all these, I am crazy about the pinipig and the ube! I’ve never expected that I would love ube (that catchy Cornetto jingle ad suddenly flashes in my mind: uuuuuuube-be I looove your way…everyday…yeeaaah) as much as I do now!

In comparison though, I felt that Prangel’s halo-halo from our humble city of Digos is still the best (naks, alangan noh!). That is not meant to take anything away from Aling Foping’s halo-halo; after all, most Davaoeños seem to really love it and it’s not just all about what’s hype. I just felt that it’s a little too pricey for only six ingredients. But this is just my opinion though, they’re both equally very good and satisfyingly delicious in their own different recipe and pricing variations. Okay? Okay! We’re good, right? Now, moving on…. ^_^

//photo credits to Tito Maykee. Check out more of his food adventures and daily musings HERE.

❤ ❤ ❤

After a couple of empowering conversations and life-telling stories with these two amazing women in my workplace, I was able to ponder what my mother once said to me when I had my first successful cooked meal in the kitchen: that the best friendships are built on a solid foundation on similar likeness of pleasant conversations, silly laughter, and eating good food.

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Funny though, before we even arrived at Avenue One Hotel, I was already deeply moved because these two pretty ladies (namely, Janna and Foramel) rushed in to fetch me right after their Bangko Sentral symposium/seminar that same day. Indeed, my mother’s words suddenly rushed into my head as I stared at these two pretty ladies in front of me that moment we gathered for another food trip and conversations:

. . . .over a tall glass of refreshingly delicious pineapple shake:

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. . . .special chocolate dreamy moist cake:

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. . . . it’s so moist believe me, this is the reason why I went to Avenue One:

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. . . . and a healthy serving of chopsuey and rice:   Flare Lite_20150728_185625

All this stuff made me remember having these empowering books that I bought for only Php20 each at Booksale SM Davao. I still have to read them though…

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And so…. right after we were done with our food, we were all brimming with generous helpings of lessons learned and this rich wide array of inspirations in life that we will surely share all through out the next generations. XOXO

❤ PS. Share some love, follow the adventures of Janna and Foramel on IG:

https://instagram.com/iamforamel/

https://instagram.com/itsactuallynorjanna/

Not Your Ordinary Coffee Table Reads: An Open Letter from Mr. Right

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Dear daughters of God,

Contrary to what you have heard, I do exist. I’m no fairytale hunk with big muscles and thing for chick flicks (although, I may or may not have a man bun). So, put your daydreams of love off to the side for a minute and let me tell you what makes me, “Mr. Right” and why people keep telling you to wait for me.

The first thing I really want for you to understand is that I was not born your Mr. Right. I promise we weren’t destined to cross paths and lock eyes from across a crowded room and fall hopelessly in love. God has been working in my heart for YEARS! Do you realize what was in my heart before Christ saved me?! Of course you don’t because we haven’t met yet, but I can promise you it is equally as crazy and sinful as what you’ve been walking through. That is why I need some time… And it is also why you need the same. Let’s do each other a huge favor and give one another the time to heal from our pasts and become something different; something whole. I know that you’ve spent a lot of time feeling less than whole, like you’re missing something, and so have I. But now we have both been made new in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17) and need to take some time to learn to walk in this new wholeness. So, I’m going to give you that space and promise not to pursue you until God has made it clear that you are in the right season in your faith.

But here is the kicker and the second thing I need you to know… As patient and trusting in God’s timing as I am, this thing between you and I also hinges on your obedience and trust in the Lord. Have you ever read the Song of Solomon? There is a part in there that I will never forget. It says, “Promise me, O women of Jerusalem (Daughters of God); not to awaken love before the time is right” (NLT Emphasis Mine). Let me fill you in on why she says that. She is begging women not hurry into love for two reasons; one, because the real thing is so worth the wait. And two, because being joined with a person out of season is one of the most painful things someone can experience. Sure you can frolic in lala land for a little while, but what happens when the romance and passion subsides and your left with just your hearts, left open and bare? What happens when the struggles hit and the person you’re with isn’t strong enough to fight the good fight of faith? What happens when they mess up and you’re expected to show them the same grace Christ showed you? I’ll tell you what happens, things will fall apart. Whether on the surface or beneath it, things will fall apart…. That’s the truth, if two people are not both firmly rooted in their faith in Christ, they will suffer for that lack together. I could walk you through almost any church and show you marriage after marriage where people are suffering because they aroused love before it’s time. They are paying for the consequences of that decision decades down the road. Which is why we must join together in patience, even though we are apart.

Here is what we are working towards and the third thing I need you to know: God has asked me to be so much like Christ that you are able to submit to me as unto Him (Ephesians 5:22-33). And He is asking you to be able to submit to me and point me to Jesus by your actions, even when I’m acting like a fool (1 Peter 3:1-6). So take a minute and think… Could you really do that right now? I’m getting closer, but I don’t think I could do that just yet. But when God gives me a peace about the continual growth of my own faith, I will know and I’ll be obedient to pursue you. And you will know that it is me because I will respectfully, tactfully, and politely pursue you with very clear intentions. When a guy begins to talk to you, know that it’s me because I’ll be respectful and not flirting with you via text. Know that it’s me because I’ll be clear that I’m asking you on a date and won’t create an atmosphere where you have to question what we are doing or where we stand. Know that it’s me because when we are dating, I’ll not only be respectful of your emotional and physical boundaries, but also have some of my own. And know that it’s me because I’ll be more interested in your faith and what your relationship with Jesus looks like than being romantic and creating surface level connections.

So, please wait for me. For your sake and my own, wait. Wait because God is telling you to wait. Wait because you have more growing to do. Wait because I have more growing to do. And wait because it will be worth it. Because at the end of the day, the reason I’m not pursuing you yet is because I’m just not ready. And the reason you’re not being pursued by me yet is that you’re just not ready. So join with me in individually submitting to God…Even if that means that there actually isn’t a Mr. or Mrs. Right waiting for us… Can we be ok with that? Can we trust God and be okay with whatever the outcome, knowing that we have already received all we need in His Son? That’s a hard question, but until you’re in a place where you’re okay with never getting married, you won’t be in a place where I will be able to pursue you. Thinking of and praying for you,

– Mr. Right

#UNFILTERED

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Dear daughters of God,

Contrary to what you have heard, I do exist. I’m no fairytale hunk with big muscles and thing for chick flicks (although, I may or may not have a man bun). So, put your daydreams of love off to the side for a minute and let me tell you what makes me, “Mr. Right” and why people keep telling you to wait for me.

The first thing I really want for you to understand is that I was not born your Mr. Right. I promise we weren’t destined to cross paths and lock eyes from across a crowded room and fall hopelessly in love. God has been working in my heart for YEARS! Do you realize what was in my heart before Christ saved me?! Of course you don’t because we haven’t met yet, but I can promise you it is equally as crazy and sinful as…

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Of Love Calls, Pandas, Shades of Blue, Muses, Jolin Tsai, OOTD’s, and Paris

This’ll be quick and short. It’s 2:30am already and I’m still – yep I’m saying the word – B U S Y, well, in this case it’s because I’m still waiting for a long distance call hopefully anytime now because UGH I still have work early tomorrow (or shall I say later) and I really don’t like that habitual application of sticky concealers or BB / CC / DD creams *sigh* for that matter because I hate too much makeup (I’m a loose-powder-and-lip-tint-only kind of person) but this time, if I won’t THEN I would look like a panda due to lack of sleep.

This blog has been without any updates again and I just hate it when that happens. So even though I’m not really a blogger, here’s another update, just to keep this blog alive . . . .

By the way, before I even begin. What’s all this deal on alphabet creams? I personally cannot wait until we finally get to ZZ creams so we can put alphabet creams to rest. They’re smart products that give excellent results, but actually choosing the best one for you is confusing.  True story: the difference is not necessarily the product in the tube, but what the beauty brands are saying about it. Here’s the real deal:

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At the end of the day, each category overlaps to the point where the differentiation is almost non-existent. The upside is they are all great products that can be very beneficial for the skin. The downside is sorting through the many varieties to determine which would work better for you. (This just in: We now have a “GG” cream.) Wait….whaaat?!

There is an alphabet cream out there for you—let’s just hope that brands don’t try to exhaust the entire alphabet! It’s just so absurd!

Oh well. . . . 

❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

It’s been another busy weekend unraveling life’s amazing surprises. Quite a few of them are discovering new friends, new favorite hangouts, new favorite food, and probably new hobby — photography. I’m still new to this kind of passion so I guess I still have to learn a bit of tweaking on angles and do a lot of artsy stuff here and there.

Recently, I’ve found new love with my own version on the art of photoplay. I simply call it rainbow unicorn ~ like, literally, you only focus the good part of your magical happy thoughts on the middle top part of your muse which actually seems to cut the end point of the scenery and totally makes it invisible.

When the mercury soars, I seek solace in taking photographs on loose silhouettes, cool blue colors and uhm what else ooh fashion! Blue has always been my most favorite shade (not to mention, since my birthstone is sapphire) and the lighter it is the more serene it looks.

I’m not some fashion expert or stylist but oh well, I guess I will keep my write up short today as my photographs are doing all the talking.

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❤ But first , lemme set you in the mood >> NP: Jolin Tsai — Play

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>> SEXY LBD (black no more). Starting off with my fashionista high school batch mate. Little Black Dress is a very common trend already, everyone must have that sexy little blue dress for a change. Don’t you just loooove to have something like this in your closet? Ooh #sexyback

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. . . really love her mix and match of blue colors here! The flower printed blue pointy-toe flats are just fabulous! Her charming blouse and skirt ensembles are so pretty and dainty — totally brings out the stylish beautiful lady in her. Please do check out more of Gab’s stylish looks on Facebook. XOXO ❤

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>> METALLIC COPPER got ATTITUDE. Lovin’ this  badass J-pop (by the way, that’s japanese pop) inspiration.

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>> COLOR BLOCKING goes classic with a twist.

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>> THE ALPHA MALE. FYI . . . cobalt blue shades make you look LEAN.

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>>  STRIPES just got livelier and fresher, like, YUM OM NOM NOM!

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. . . . and don’t you just love these neon mint blue jelly flats?

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. . . . oops, can’t help but love these arm candies and chunky rings ❤

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>> well, you can always wear it the BOLD & ADVENTUROUS way_DSC0348

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. . . . and by being bold & adventurous, need I say more? 

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>> NEONS aren’t just for girls. They look super good on boys too!

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. . . pardon me but I just love these oxfords. They’re so K-Pop!

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>> And wow last but not the least, I really have to post this as special mention. Super love the MIX and MATCH of blue shades here! Meet my fashionista friend since high school, a true-blue stylist, designer, and fashion guru — Nidey Gica. Special thanks to Fossil timepiece, Massimo Dutti for the shoes, Zara For Him and Topman for the outfit. Oh the perks of photography! 

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…check out more of my bestie’s fashion looks on Facebook  

Blue is a fail-proof color must-have and it’s extremely easy to style and pair with almost anything. In fact, my tip for a casual day wear is: When in doubt, wear blue!

Hope you had a great weekend guys! I will see you soon with a new post! Mwah mwah mwah! XOXO :)

You can also follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest for daily updates on my mundane musings. 

P.S. ∞ Here’s mine for the OOTD ❤ to the cerulean moon and back ૐ

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X O X O

Banana Pancake Friday

No work today yaay!

Which means I got to finally do some stuff that I’ve been wanting to do since last week: finish editing my summer video (with the cousins and relatives) which I’m hoping to post very soon on my next blog about the latest travel destinations here in our humble city of Digos (Southern Mindanao, Philippines).

I’m so excited about this, it was way back in college days since my last movie editing project. I’ve been sitting all day having fun editing and making clips.

Oops that’s my little daughter, sleeping…  *Wink Wink*

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It was like crazy these past few weeks, but thankfully I’m feeling a lot better now. Blame it on these exercises from Blogilates that I’ve been doing for a month now. I used to love doing Just Dance versions for my exercise routine but Blogilates has a lot of discipline and motivation that really drove me into this change of routine. So there BOOM I switched for the better.

Cassey of Blogilates really aims for the kill! She really tortures you and at the same time makes you love it. How crazy is that? It’s like total abomination of the body system, her easy moves (albeit simplicity) actually buuurns!

At first I was feeling really sore all over. Yes, literally, my whole body ached for like a week or two, and it’s really difficult to move around (especially for the first three days) let alone laugh or even cough. Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!

But now that I survived April, I’m looking forward for the whole month of May. Yesss body goals for the kill haha just kidding! As Cassey said “No Maybes”, besides “It’s Gonna Be May”.

She’s probably having another LSS to this classic N’Sync beat while doing another new pilates video. Well, who doesn’t love N’Sync? I can’t seem to get enough of the song too, and the lyrics are very MOTIVATIONAL and really pushes you to MOVE ON. Ayyyt! How cute is that meme?

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Oh well….

I did some recipe of banana pancakes from Cassey’s recommendations of Cheap Clean Eats. Well, guess what?! It’s really easy to make, and it’s very healthy too! Using just 1 ripe banana (thinly sliced) and 2 eggs (yes, all the whites and yolks). I mixed the ingredients all at once in my trusty ol’ portable blender until smooth.

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I made a few batches of these really delicious healthy banana pancakes and it’s a real winner! Nice flavor and very light to the tummy.

Especially ideal during rush hours to the office. I can always make them the night before and pop them in the toaster for an instant breakfast on the go (the sweetness of the banana pairs perfect with black coffee).

Cheap clean eats, indeed!

My little daughter really enjoyed it too! And now, for some selfies 🙂

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Take note that this is only ideal for kids as snacks, not serves as a full meal.

ENJOY!

xoxo