IFEX 2019

Yesterday was the fourth and last day of my stint as a NAIA Buyer Services Representative for CITEM. It was a productive gig, and I am thankful for the chance to serve our country by smiling and assisting VIP passengers. 

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It was a privilege to hear Sunday mass at the Terminal 2 chapel. 

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After mass, I ate Minute Burger’s pizza burger for brekkie. It was so good! It went well with Jollibee’s surprisingly flavorful brewed coffee. 

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After airport duties, I rode a bus, train, and a tuktuk to the World Trade Center for IFEX 2019, the country’s premier food expo!

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I got to eat, drink, and appreciate all the hard work I have contributed for the past four days. I am very proud to be Filipino, and it makes me happy to see all these exhibitors bring the best of Filipino cuisine to the world. 

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I made sure to buy straw bags from Crafter’s Joy, a Pangasinan-based social enterprise that provides livelihood to local women weavers. 

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I am excited to use these straw bags! The planter was for my mom. 

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It was an honor to serve our country for the past four days, and to sample the best Filipino food and drinks at IFEX. I look forward to next year’s expo, and I hope to serve the country again in the future. 

Mabuhay! 

Coloring My Vision

I ordered a pair of tinted specs from local optical shop Sunnies Specs. I won a pair of glasses during their Dear Sunnies Santa giveaway last December. Since my father passed away recently, I felt the need to start anew and I’ve always wanted to support Sunnies Specs after their generosity last Christmas. 

I get new glasses during new beginnings. I believe that it is now my time to be stronger and more stable after my father’s passing. These new tinted specs will not only keep me looking smart, but they will also inspire me to live life more colorfully. 

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I’ve also been getting more sleep and it shows on my clear skin. 

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After claiming my specs, I went to CITEM in Pasay for my training. I am chosen to be a NAIA Services Representative for the second time. The upcoming IFEX fair will usher in foreign buyers, and it is my job to welcome and assist them at the airport. 

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I can’t wait to begin this three-day “modeling gig” and meet new friends. 

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After my meeting, I had late lunch at Echo Cafe, a sustainable social enterprise that sells natural products and healthful food.  

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I had their delicious banana heart burger and cafe espagnole, which is a mix of coffee and chocolate. So good! 

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I capped the afternoon by visiting my best friend Luti at her condo. She took this photo of me from her window.  

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I had my pixie trim for the month of May and a massage to relax me after a long day. 

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I also received this gift of semiprecious bracelets from Luti. I am eager to release negative emotions and have more energy this year!

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Here’s to more colorful opportunities and blessings on this new beginning! 

New Girl

My office is just five minutes away from home, so I just take a tricycle to and from work. I’m liking the commute so far!

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I rode in style. 

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And I’m appreciating all the blessings that I’m getting amidst my dad’s terminal illness. 

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Please continue praying for my dad! And for me as well, as I continue hustling for my family.  

Manila Fame 2019

Yesterday, I woke up to a postcard sent by my good friend Nurai. She’s based in Germany, but she posted this from Spain while she was on holiday. 

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It was the ideal preview to my artistic day ahead. I rode the LRT 1 and hailed a tuktuk to take me directly to the World Trade Center. 

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I went to the Manila Fame to immerse myself in Filipino artistry. My short visit last Friday was too brief, and I really wanted to spend more time at the fair. 

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I started my visit with some refreshing liquer de calamansi. 

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Then, I had some good coffee.  

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I dropped by the Handcrafted by Harl’s booth because I love their advocacy in supporting differently-abled artisans. I bought a handbag from them last year, and it’s still serving me well. 

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I joined a leather-crafting workshop for only Php50. I made a leather coin purse with the help of their talented deaf-mute artisans. 

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I ended up being the empowered one because I learned a new skill and got to learn from a differently-asked person.  

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It was lovely to see fashion influencer Lolaandrogynous at the fair! I totally dig her style. 

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I also bought small trinkets from another social enterprise, Kilus.  

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I got to appreciate the finer details during this visit.  

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I finally got to try 1st Colonial’s sili ice cream and it was delicious!

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I had a wonderful evening at Manila Fame and I’m very proud to be Filipino.  

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I ended my day with cheese sticks, so I’m also doing the same here. 

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Here’s to more opportunities to be proudly Pinoy! 

Meet and Watch

Yesterday, I had meetings at both Megamall and BGC. To save time and energy, I opted to take the MRT and BGC bus. It saved me heaps of time, and I still felt relaxed by the time I arrived at BGC. 

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Both meetings were productive, but I was especially proud of myself during the BGC meeting because I was able to share more insights about this blog and how it influences me to curate my lifestyle on-the-go. Usually, it’s the other way around, but my previous experiences give me the creativity to explore more and make the most out of life. Sharing my life here on my humble home on the interwebs pushes me to live more with less. 

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I had sizzling burger steak with egg at the food court for dinner. This was my favorite lunch during my Miriam grade school days, so I eat this whenever I can for nostalgia.  

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Lastly, I watched Pansamantagal at Cinema Centenario. It was a funny movie on living life as if it were your last and not minding other people’s opinions. I highly recommend it!

Life is too short. Make the most out of your time here on earth. Share what motivates you to inspire others. And watch movies with a heart. We are only here pansamantagal (for the meantime).

Escolta Walk

I spent March 30th (Vincent Van Gogh’s birthday) with a special walking tour of Escolta, Manila. Together with my helper, Racquel, I explored what was once the country’s premier business and retail district with a DIY photo walk. 

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Our first stop was the Sta. Cruz Parish, which welcomes the faithful to the historical district. 

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Then, it was time to visit heritage buildings and appreciate fine architectural details. 

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The Regina Building and First United Building are just two of the remaining (and well-maintained) heritage buildings in the area. The latter has become particularly popular with millennials as it houses a community museum, coworking space, a cafe, bar, barbershop, indie boutiques, and offices. 

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It is an intersection of our cultural origins and adaptive reuse. 

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The First United Building has just turned ninety years old. 

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The building hosts several events such as parties and gigs on nights and weekends.  

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The community museum features the restored office of the late Sy Lian Teng, who was the building’s late owner.  

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It is a testament to the man’s resilience and enduring business acumen which has influenced the building’s and Escolta’s trajectory.  

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With today’s gigantic malls, it is mind boggling that our retail behavior has been largely influenced by Escolta and the building’s very own Berg’s Department Store. It sold the finest RTW for women, which at that time was a modern innovation in Southeast Asia (most women still had made-to-order clothes at that time).

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The 1950’s refrigerator still works today! It is used during events in the building. 

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The building has beautiful details which are rarely seen on today’s more practical structures.  

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I also checked out my college friend Daniela Calumba’s store at the building’s ground floor. Her eponymous handmade jewelry and organic line of toiletries have been making waves for their handmade production process. 

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I got an amulet from her partner Alaala Sala’s line of vintage accessories. 

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The space is collectively known as HUB | Make:Lab.  

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The place is a retail haven for objects that will delight the vintage connoisseur.  

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There are stamps too from all over the world. 

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As a history geek and vintage enthusiast, this building was a treasure trove for me!

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We continued our walk to other parts of Escolta. 

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My grandfather, who is an accountant, used to have an office at the Madrigal Building. 

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We took a detour to Binondo, the oldest Chinatown in the world. 

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We cooled down with some excellent milk tea at 80 Memories Tofu House.  

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We also dropped by Binondo Church to pray for our intentions and to give thanks.  

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I was fascinated with the lost graves of Bindondo, where the city’s original Chinese elite were interred. 

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We also went to the Calvo Building, which houses the Escolta Museum. It is also the original site of the GMA Network. 

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We made one final stop before going home. The Manila Post Office, which I have toured earlier this year, continues to remind passersby that history is everywhere, and that it can literally connect us all together. 

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Escolta was once known as the Queen of Streets. With its enduring beauty and continuous significance, it remains to be an important part of our country’s rich culture. It is also a reminder for us to innovate and rise above the wars that destroy us. 

Like Escolta, we must never forget who we really are. 

Healing and Hugs

Yesterday, I got to enjoy my day after my transformation of work conference at AIM.

I checked out the Peek-a-Book exhibition at the Ayala Museum for my first stop.  

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Here are my favorites: 

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Then, I got myself some milk tea from Teaberi. Their cup looks fab with my cozy from The Attic Yarn and Craftery! 

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I went for some pampering at a salon.  

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I got myself some trendy hairpins! 

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I rode the MRT and the LRT.  

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Then, it was cuddle time with my furry friends at Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe Sta. Lucia branch. 

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I ended my day with a healing mass officiated by Fr. Fernando Suarez. 

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I prayed for my terminally-ill father, as well as for my jobhunting journey.  

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It doesn’t take much to make me happy. I just need some art, hugs, and healing from the challenges that each day brings. With faith and positivity, I know that I got this.  

Forever Young

As I face many challenges with my dad being terminally-ill and my jobhunting journey, I felt that I needed a break. I went to Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe to unwind with their friendly doggos.  

I missed my favorite dog Ella’s kisses! She’s a tiny chiweenie with a big heart.  

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With Bonita, a tiny poodle. 

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Chocnut and Stitch!

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With Stitch. 

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With Martha. 

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And Happy the Pug!

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I had lunch with my family at Conti’s. Their chicken roulade was delicious! 

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For dessert, I had the Oreo matcha frozen yogurt from Elait.  

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Then, I dropped by the Barbie birthday event at The Block. 

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I’m a shameless Barbie fan. I got dolls for me and my goddaughter Kate.  

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I could hardly contain my excitement with my new doll. 

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My Grab car yesterday was cute! It had Doraemon seatcovers. 

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Then, I dressed my new doll in her new Hello Kitty outfit.  

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She’s a Made to Move Barbie, and I had fun posing her. 

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There’s nothing wrong with playing with toys as an adult. Being forever young helps me manage with life’s stresses with positivity and good vibes.  

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Here’s to more happy days ahead!

SWS Survey Review 2019

Yesterday, I started my day with a P2P ride to Makati.  

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I bought puto from the vendor at the bus station, and it was very good!

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I went to AIM for the 2019 SWS Survey Review and it was insightful. 

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Then, I proceeded to Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe to play with my doggo buddies. 

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I ended my day with some kimchi rice at the weekend bazaar near my parking space.  

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I had a productive Friday which was a balance of learning, cuddling, and eating! Hopefully, I’ll receive more invitations to learning opportunities and seminars. 

Mentor and Manila

Yesterday, I dropped by UP to quickly print some documents for jobhunting.  

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Then, I met up with my college mentor Mitzie for some Thai noodle soup at Sen Lek. 

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We later had bubble coffee at Kape Tayo. It was good! 

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We then parted ways and I proceeded to Binondo for a meeting. But first, I passed by Escolta to admire the heritage buildings there.  

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I had an insightful meeting. I went home and received snail mail from The Pink Sisters Convent. 

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I also got my yarn orders from The Attic Yarn and Craftery.  

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And finally, I received a postcard from my good friend Nurai, who was on holiday at Cappadocia.  

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I am very lucky to have few but well-meaning friends. I even have sisters who constantly pray for me. And I have a mentor who still advises me to this day. Here’s to a wiser adulthood and better decisions ahead.  

Rosario Yarn Adventure

Last Saturday, I went to Lacion General Merchandise right beside Rosario bridge in Pasig. You won’t miss it- it’s located on the corner unit of a pink complex. There are sacks and bags filled with yarns! 

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I freaked out and wanted to buy so many yarns. But I resolved to only buy one kilo. This store is famous among local knitters and crocheters. Just search “Rosario Pasig Yarns” and you will know what I mean. 

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The store spins their own yarn imported from Taiwan. You may mix variegated and solid colors, and each kilo retails for Php390. 

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They also sell machine-spun shawls made of the same yarns. 

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After searching through their bags and chatting with the owners, Kuya Miner and Ate Gladys, I finally selected five balls to consist one kilo.  

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They recommend a size 4-5mm hook for their yarn. I am currently knitting using one of my purchases with a pair of 4.5mm needles, and the weave is so soft. 

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I highly recommend this shop! It’s definitely worth visiting and the yarns are worth the commute. The owners are also kind and honest. Drop by soon! 

Manila CPO Tour

Yesterday, I joined the Postal Heritage Operational Tour organized by the Royal Postal Heritage Guided Tour Group. I am a philatelist, and I am fond of activities organized by Pilipinas Philately, such as the stamp forum that I attended last year. This was why it’s not a struggle for me to wake up early on a Saturday morning to join a tour in Manila. 

I started my day by having taho for brekkie.  

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I rode the LRT, and in half an hour, I was greeted by old school downtown Manila.  

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It was my first time to cross the famous Jones Bridge on foot. I was so giddy during this moment as this was a focal point in the movie Last Night starring Toni Gonzaga and Piolo Pascual.  

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After literally crossing the bridge, I reached the beautiful Manila Central Post Office.

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There were stamps for sale at the lobby during the event.  

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Again, I was delighted to be there because the central post office building was featured in the film Hintayan ng Langit starring Gina Pareño and Eddie Garcia.  

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Naturally, I gravitated towards Rizal stamps.  

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I crocheted while waiting for the lecture to begin. 

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We all received a welcome packet with some stamps! 

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And I was happy to see a model of the Murillo Velarde Map, whose original I saw in person last year. 

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I was especially drawn to the P.O. boxes as they had a classic vibe.  

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Look at these doors!

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This staircase is gorgeous. 

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After the lecture, we got to tour the post office and learn about the operations of the government agency. 

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It was lovely to be in the company of fellow philatelists.  

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Our last stop was the postshop, where we all got to purchase current stamps in circulation. 

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This is my haul. I got stamps that make me smile, such as valentine symbols and year of the pig stamps.  

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I had the time of my life at the tour and I am looking forward to more philatelic geekery in the future! I hope you can also join a post office tour in the future. Just look them up on Facebook for more details. It’s free, and I’m sure that you will also have a good time!

Journey to Faith

Yesterday, I rode a couple of trains to... 

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...St. Clare Monastery! I gave thanks and prayed for my personal intentions.  

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I had a hearty and healthful lunch. The Wild Wild West salad from Go! Salads was so delicious. The ranch dressing definitely brought a unique punch to my midday.  

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I continued to do some work on my phone while cuddling with the dogs of Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe. I was welcomed by my favorite dog, Ella the chiweenie. 

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Stark the pomsky was camera-shy. 

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I also bonded with Ella’s son Chocnut and Happy the pug.  

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It was hard to say goodbye even if I’m a frequent guest at the cafe.  

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Before going to bed, I transferred these two scents into travel perfume bottles from Beabi. I was proud of myself for finding a way to transfer the DKNY perfume to the smaller bottle as it was difficult to open. Thank God for online forums, and I was able to research how to open the bottle.  

Both scents were Christmas gifts to me.  

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I restore my faith by continuously praying, communing with nature (in the form of furry dogs), and surprising myself with a new skill (even if it’s as simple as transferring perfume). Life is a journey, but it can be easier with some faith and belief in oneself. 

Work and Play

Yesterday, I had a meeting at Ortigas. I took the P2P going there, and I knitted while I was stuck in traffic. 

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After my meeting, I had lunch at Sunnies Cafe. Half of the time was spent taking pictures around their interesting interiors. 

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I had pumpkin purée... 

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...Sunnies risotto... 

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 ...and a flat white. 

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Then, I proceeded to Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe for some furry cuddles. 

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I find time to knit wherever I go, eat at places that make me happy, and hug my furry canine friends. Life may be hard, but I have usual rituals that keep me going. Here’s to more yarn, coffee, and cuddles! 

Saturday Night

I was free yesterday afternoon, so I decided to visit VC Trading in Cubao to buy a 6.5 crochet hook and some variegated yarn. 

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I ended up with both for less than P250! I love VC Trading.  

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Then, I went to St. Clare to continue praying for my intentions.  

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By nightfall,  I was already at Barkin Blends Dog Cafe. My favorite dog Ella was there, so some cuddling ensued. 

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How do you spend your Saturday night? It would be great to share Saturday nights with someone, but for now I’m happy to purchase yarns and notions, praying for my intentions, and hugging my favorite dog.  

Here’s to better times ahead! 

IDC 2018

Yesterday, I got to attend the International Design Conference of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). The IDC 2018 entertaining and informative. I learned from the various panels of speakers from the creative industries, and now I am more inspired to keep on pursuing dangerous ideas in order to take risks, innovate, and disrupt my life. 

I took two P2P buses to conveniently reach the venue, the Samsung Hall at SM Aura. 

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I wore Marikina-made shoes from Rob and Mara, which I purchased after trying them on for comfort. And yes, they are one of my most comfortable pairs to date! 

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I had pizza for breakfast!

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And a non-fat latte to perk me up.  

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Then, it was time for the talks. 

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For lunch, I went to Aperitif. I had the prosciutto pasta, which was mixed in a cheese wheel. For dessert, I had the ooey gooey chewy chocolate chip cookie, which truly lived up to its name.  

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After getting my share of creative inspiration, I proceeded to The Pen to view the Salcedo Auctions’ preview of Important Philippine Art.  

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It was moving to view the boceto for the Spoliarium, which is Juan Luna’s most prolific work.  

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I am determined to keep on being creative, thanks to the IDC 2018, my sumptuous French lunch and snack, and remarkable Philippine art. I am really lucky to have these opportunities, and I look forward to similar experiences in the future. 

Stability Eats

Yesterday, I experienced driving through really strong rains. By the time I parked my car, I was starving! I decided to eat breakfast at Jollibee while waiting for the P2P bus to take me to Ortigas. 

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I enjoyed my “stopover” meal of breakfast burger steak and coffee. 

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I also bought hot calamansi juice to sip while inside the P2P bus.  

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I got some work done in the morning, then I went to UA&P to check out the new caf inside MPC.  

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I had chicken siomai with java rice.  

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And I also had my favorite Chillers fresh avocado shake!  

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For early dinner, I checked out Ça Va at Podium. It’s a newly opened creperie and floral atelier. 

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I invited Anne, the lady behind 11*11 Handmade  to join me! I really enjoyed catching up with her over good food and coffee.

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My sriracha meatballs rice bowl was amazing! It went well with my flat white.  

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Food is my love language, but I prefer to eat it rather than cook it! I find joy in comfort food and coffee. I know that even when the skies are not blue, I will still be okay for as long as I know what truly makes me happy.  

From Alabang to Manila

I went to Alabang after my breakfast forum at the AIM the other day. I took the P2P to Alabang Town Center, and I took sips of coffee in my tumbler during my trip. 

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I visited Common Room ATC because my visit to their Katipunan branch earlier this week was not enough! 

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I bought the necklace and wood chips for my mom, who bought me so many goodies from her recent trip to Osaka, Japan. I got myself cord ties from Punch Crafts and a skinny brass ring from Blue Flame. 

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I recently misplaced one of my Nawa rings, and I was eager to replace it with another locally-made ring. Luckily, Common Room has a handmade brass ring in my size. Blue Flame is also a brand close to my heart as I have previously bought a sterling silver necklace from this maker. 

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I also spent some time at the seesaw outside the store. 

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I took the P2P back to Makati. I checked out this Pia minaudiare from my friend Rafe’s brand. 

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I was hungry, so I had a couple of silvanas from Dumaguete-born bakeshop Sans Rival. I had the butter and choco silvanas. Both were so good! However, I was partial to the butter variant. It was perfection. 

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I then took a sidetrip to St. Jude to pray for my personal intentions. 

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On my way home, I saw these K9 poodles! 

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Here’s to more adventures in search of handmade, good food, and blessings from up above!