Stitch and Sponsor

There are simple ways for me to truly feel blessed. One of them is child sponsorship. I have been sponsoring this girl’s education for twelve years now. It feels amazing that I get to change one life’s trajectory, even in my own small way. 

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I also feel blessed whenever I knit. I am thankful for the yarn that I turn into scarves, such as this chunky cowl that I made while attending meetings and focus group discussions this past week. I keep my hands busy by knitting while showing up to discussions that not only sustain me, but also enrich my life. 

When I keep myself going and thriving, I feel as if I can embrace my true self after all and conquer each day with a gratitude mindset.  

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By stitching and sponsoring, I get to share my blessings and skill while living my best life. It is up to me to continue doing so, and these two passions inspire me to continue working and simply showing up everyday. 

Ortigas Meeting

I had a meeting this morning to discuss marketing trends with a company in Ortigas. It was held at Starbucks Tektite, where I used to hang out during my uni days. It felt nostalgic to be back! 

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I’d like to think that I’m forever young, though! 

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I will always be a nonfat latte girl. I also knitted while the meeting was ongoing.  

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I got to meet Laura, one of my fellow listeners of the Wake Up with Jim and Saab podcast. She also participated in the meeting. I’m all for meeting new friends and connecting with like-minded people. 

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Sharing my insights is rewarding and productive. I also get to keep up with current trends and educate myself in the process. Here’s to more learning opportunities for growth and advancement!

Valentine’s 2019

Yesterday, I started Valentine’s Day by knitting while waiting for lunch to be served. My family and I had lunch at Japan Fūdo Street, and we had a lovely time! 

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I had my usual order, the oyakodon. It’s delicious and flavorful.  

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After lunch, I went to St. Clare Monastery to lift up my intentions and give thanks to the Lord for all the blessings that I continue to receive.  

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I was welcomed by friendly doggos who don’t seem to mind my presence, even if I’m there almost weekly! 

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Of course, I had to cuddle my favorite doggo Ella on heart’s day.  

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I was also lucky to receive chocolates from the owners of Barkin’ Blends. Thank you! 

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I had a soy honey refresher from Soy Yummy and I was pleased to meet a deaf employee there. I am happy that more businesses are employing special needs staff. They deserve equal opportunities in the workforce.  

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I had early dinner at Falafel Yo! I was pleasantly surprised with their pita fries. They’re yummy!

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Before going home, I got to listen to some acoustic love songs at the free gig inside the mall.  

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I even received a free pastillas rose from the mall management. Thank you! 

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I came home to a package from Lazada. My yarn bowl has arrived safely.  

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It’s nicer in person, and it fits all my yarns!

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I am happy with my Valentine’s Day celebration this year. I got to knit, pray, spend time with doggos, eat out, and gift myself with more crafting. Life is good, and I am so blessed. 

Bright Gray

I love the color gray, and I own a lot of clothes in that color palette. I finished knitting a gray scarf, and it was a process that took me from coffee to dessert

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I finished this scarf in less than a week as I used chunky yarn purchased from my favorite yarn store, The Attic Yarn and Craftery.  

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The result was this beautiful graphic scarf that wraps warmly around the neck.  

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Before going home, I managed to snag a pair of white sneakers from local brand So Fab! at 50% off during the 12.12 sale. I am thankful for the cash gift from a relative which I have used to buy these shoes.  

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I stictched the scarf together by the time I got home. 

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And I made it into an infinity scarf for easier wearing!

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Before going to bed, I started a new scarf using yarn from the same store

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Gray may be a drab color to some, but for me, its simple elegance makes it a versatile hue to work with. I am inspired to keep on knitting, as I enjoy life with coffee and things that matter. 

Keeping Afloat

I used to meet my late friend Diane at Starbucks Gateway back in uni. We would meet here as this was halfway between my school, UA&P, and hers, the Ateneo. We used to sit by the window and admire the leather shoes and bags at PabDer. And our conversation flowed as our coffees got colder. We didn’t really mind, as we were there for each other. 

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I miss her still. She passed away in 2008, but I still commemorate her life whenever I can. Yesterday, I knitted at our Starbucks (by the way, happy 21st anniversary, Starbucks Philippines!), while admiring the shoes and bags at PabDer from afar. It’s Christmas, and carols are being played on the speakers. My coffee has gone cold. But the memory of Diane continues to warm my heart. 

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To cheer myself up, I bought a large mango float from popular chain Maxi Mango. It was delicious, as always!

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Then, I lifted up my intentions at St. Clare Monastery. 

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Adulting may be messy and unpredictable, so I keep my constants close because they help me stay afloat. I know that Diane is watching over me and our other friends, and that St. Clare is praying for my intentions.

I believe that good things will come my way very soon!

Knitting Warmth

My family may be facing challenges with a sick parent, but I am still on fight mode! 

I am staying strong, and I keep myself cheerful by knitting.  

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I also keep myself awake with coffee.  

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I managed to finish this mini blanket for me my cinema runs. My legs always get chilly during my frequent movie nights so this is a real treat for me. 

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Since I finished my cinema blanket, it’s time to begin knitting a new scarf!

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I may be feeling cold in the hospital room, but I am with my family and I get to knit my own warmth and joy. I am certain that each challenge can be handled better with some balancing tactics such as hobbies. I am grateful that knitting has become an integral part of my self-care routine, and I hope that it could help you too in case you’re interested to take it up as a pastime!

Knitting Myself Together

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I first learned how to knit at Banaue. I realized that  it might be something I would enjoy, so I persevered until I eventually finished my first scarf

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Since then, I continued to knit like it’s no one’s business. By now, I know that I prefer working without a pattern. Focusing on scarves and beanies make me happy as I mindlessly knit during meetings and events. And yes, knitting helps me focus during discussions. 

This is why I am glad to finish another scarf, this time an infinity one which could be rolled to be a chunky wrap around the neck, a tube top, or rolled to an even smaller size to be a loose cowl.

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I knit because it gives me a sense of purpose, no matter what. I will continue to do so because it gives me joy, and I know that it will empower me even during those times when I feel weak. Knitting is my strength.

If you are interested to learn, there are tutorials online and workshops that you could research on.

Please consider knitting. You won’t regret learning this mindful craft. 

Flat White Purls

Yesterday, I got to knit while on a lunch meeting. As always, it has helped me focus on the matter at hand. It also helped that my Figaro flat white was brewed strongly, just as I prefer it to be. 

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My go-to lunch at Figaro is their adobo flakes kare-kare, which never disappoints. It is filling, comforting, and flavorful- truly, it is the quintessential Filipino meal. 

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Never underestimate the power of a handmade hobby and a power lunch. You will nourish your body and your soul, as you go along with your day. May you always find a way to make work better, one meal and stitch at a time.

Crafting Potential

Yesterday, I bought yarns from one of my go-to handmade shops, The Craft Central. I did not have any particular project in mind. I simply wanted the colors I got and filled my basket. 

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I do believe in surrounding myself with things that fill my heart with joy. Knitting using yarns in colors that I like makes me giddy, and it helps clear my mind. 

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I also believe in shopping small and independent, that is why I frequent craft shops, indie businesses, and local brands. The yarns I bought yesterday were from The Attic Yarn and Craftery, and just like The Craft Central, it fulfills all three aforementioned qualities. 

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Simply put, having a handmade lifestyle makes me smile!

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If you would like to learn a craft of two, here are the upcoming workshops at The Craft Central SM North Edsa:

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I hope that you will also find your craft, and enjoy shopping for supplies every now and then! It is good for your soul. 

Technology, Jobs, and Knitting

I just finished knitting a blue-and-pink scarf which I have been working on during a particularly difficult time with a friend. I have previously shared that it was painful to complete it because I remembered talking to this person, whom I have trusted through the years. Now that circumstances have been unfavorable with this individual due to variables beyond my control, I have decided to move on by stitching it to completion. Seeing it done was bittersweet, because it was tangible proof that I am resilient enough to complete tasks even if the story behind it was an unhappy one. Nevertheless, knitting it was a process that started with a sad conversation, and ended with the realization that I am stronger than I think I am.

Having said that, I began knitting another scarf yesterday, using new needles and a Sweet Roll branded variegated yarn. It was thrilling to begin again, so to speak, with new notions and the determination to move on. While knitting this new project, I have also listened to the Technology and Jobs podcast produced by the Asian Development Bank, or the ADB.

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It is a four-episode podcast series which tackled the future of work in the upcoming Fourth Industrial Revolution. It is ironic that I was listening to the series while knitting, which is a handmade craft that takes time, effort, and dedication. While I am doing this as a hobby, I am aware of how technology is rapidly changing work today, both for better, and for worse.

Screenshot from ADB’s Soundcloud page, as hyperlinked above.

Screenshot from ADB’s Soundcloud page, as hyperlinked above.

I have learned key insights from this series, such as the need for companies to ensure that technology will not replace human labor, the importance of continuous training in skills, and the message for BPO employees to enter the outsourcing industry, but not stay there for long. As a former BPO employee, I am grateful for half-a-decade’s worth of training and work experience. However, I am also glad to have exited before I felt the burnout due to the repetitive nature of my role. Now that I am looking for a job in the corporate sector, I am constantly training and enriching myself through reading, listening to podcasts, and attending seminars and conferences.

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Knitting has also helped me grasp the importance of handmade crafts. While a machine may replace a pair of knitting needles, it could never replace the skill of working hands. There is love and dedication that is poured out to every hand-knitted project. The same goes with technology and jobs.

As a jobseeker, I blog everyday to share my thoughts on relevant topics and self-improvement. I maximize the technology available to me to update my website, speakoutsam.com. I use the internet to communicate with my peers and to coordinate with individuals who are capable of organizing learning events and opportunities. Still, the ideas are all my own. Technology merely helps me get my message out into the world.

As I continue knitting, job seeking, reading, and listening to podcasts, I hope that I will be able to stay relevant and up-to-date with today’s trends and opportunities. May the paradox of my handmade lifestyle and digital blogging encourage you to also pursuit your passions and to always be yourself! Because at the end of the day, what makes us human is something that technology will never, ever be able to replace. 

Pasta and Yarn

Yesterday, I was able to enjoy knitting while eating delicious Italian food at one of my usual restaurants, Cibo. This time, I tried something I’ve never had before- the penne al’amado with burrata. 

The braised beef beautifully complemented the cheese, resulting in a flavorful meal that brightened up my Monday. 

My red grape shake and coffee made lunch- and knitting- relaxing.  

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After finishing my meal, I proceeded to a store I have never been to before: Dreams Yarnshoppe. I was looking forward to it, and I was not disappointed.  

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The store had a killer inventory for such a small space! 

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Prices were reasonable for the thrifty crafter.  

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I ended up with a variegated ball of yarn and a pair of oversized needles to go with it. I also got some extra point protectors.

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I was definitely happy, and I carried on with my shopping. I got a 90’s pair of sunnies to update my look.  

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It was similar to my old pairs of sunnies during my childhood. I am happy that skinny frames are back because I can be my 90’s self again somehow! 

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I am lucky to have been able to enjoy my Monday with delicious food, a memorable retail experience, and some crafting along the way. I hope to discover more stores to inspire me create, write, and explore!

Trim and Pray

I enjoyed knitting while waiting for my lunch yesterday at Pho Hoa. I had chili shrimps with rice and as always, I enjoyed it with sriracha. 

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I had my pixie trimmed at the salon after lunch. 

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Then, I went to St. Clare Monastery to pray and give thanks. 

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I always treasure days that are productive yet still chill. I hope that I will have more days which are a balance of leisure, work, and prayer. 

Ox Brain and Knitting

I had my first taste of ox brain yesterday at Mister Kabab, and it was a delicious experience. I have been stalking this meal on Instagram for a few months now. I felt that I had to be brave enough to eat this, but when I finally did, it didn’t feel like a big deal. It was simply yummy and filling. The consistency was creamy, and the meat melted in my mouth. 

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I had it with rice and this heavenly yogurt shake. 

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Of course, I snuck in some knitting while waiting for my order.  

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I drizzled garlic sauce on my meal. It was the perfect lazy Saturday lunch. 

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I then proceeded to Human Nature to purchase my personal needs for April. 

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Every visit to Human Nature is a pleasant experience. I had coffee after paying for my things. 

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I feel better after overcoming a certain fear. Yesterday, I felt badass after eating ox brain. I guess it may not mean that much to most people, but for me, it was quite a milestone. If you want to feel better about yourself, I suggest that you also eat or learn something new. Your soul will thank you for it. 

Strawberry Ice Cream

These days, I usually begin my day with a workout.  If I am on the stationary bike, I like reading and knitting while doing some cardio. Yesterday was no exception as I read my ebook and knitted at the same time. 

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Then, I had lunch with my BFF Jay, who’s a professor at UP. 

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We went to SGD, where I had this yummy etag carbonara. 

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And for dessert, I had this delicious Cordillera Strawberry Ice Cream. 

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SGD never disappoints! 

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I also got this magnet from my BFF, who was recently in Cebu. Thank you!  

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I really want to have that carbonara, strawberry ice cream and SGD black coffee again. ‘Til next time!

Prism Scarf

I finished knitting this prism scarf for a close high school friend of mine. It is made of self-striping yarn called Shawl in a Ball purchased from Gantsilyo Guru. In true branding form, I was able to complete a whole scarf using only one ball of yarn. 

I enjoyed knitting this baby as it was fun to watch the colors change from one color to another. It was magical to see the transition from my needles. It was also easy to work with despite having tinsel woven through the yarn.  

This won’t be my last time to knit using this kind of yarn. It was a joy to complete. I hope to knit in more interesting places and see colors pass through my needles again! 

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Knitting, Kabab, and Coffee

I woke up extra early today, so I worked out before the rush hour. 

Afterwards, I decided to eat at Mister Kabab for breakfast. Their special chicken chelo kebab (double ground!) is my all-time favorite brekkie whenever I am up at an ungodly hour. It is best paired with coffee and knitting. 

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It was an awesome idea to treat myself to a Persian breakfast at my usual place. I love knitting at my go-to locations where I can let my hair down and simply be myself. I hope that you have that kind of place in your life. The kind that you drive to when you’re up extra early or when you simply need to soundtrip, eat, and chill (for me, it’s knitting!). When you do find that place, always make time to come back. It is good for your soul. 

Easter Sunday 2018

I celebrated Easter Sunday by getting fit and eating out!

My morning was spent brisk walking at UP.  

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I missed soundtripping while walking. Also, the weather was really nice.  

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My breakfast consisted of shredded cheese corn...

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 ...and a dirty ice cream sandwich!

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I knitted before mass.  

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Then, we had lunch after church. We chose Torch as we were craving for meats, pizza, and maki. 

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This was the volcano roll. It was a deliciously spicy dish. 

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This Philly cheesesteak pizza was a crowd pleaser. It was satisfying and flavorful. 

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The steak, fish and chips, and chicken yakitori were all yummy as well! 

My Easter with family was well-spent. I hope that next year, it will also be fabulous! 

Black Saturday 2018

I began my Black Saturday with a workout and a hearty breakfast. 

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I posed by the townhouses near our hotel which resemble the San Francisco houses in Lola and the Boy Next Door.  

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On our way home, we passed by the Calamba Rizal Shrine. I am a Rizal fan, so this felt like a homecoming. 

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The Php1 coin I was holding was a tribute to my idol, as he is featured on the currency. 

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Rizal had a dog!

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We also dropped by the church where Rizal was baptized. 

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It was located right next to his house. 

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That was a fun visit!

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My family and I had late lunch at Mom and Tina’s. Their Shepherd’s Pie is still so good after all these years!

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I enjoyed reconnecting with my idol and eating delicious food. What a way to celebrate the Holy Week break. I look forward to more memorable moments in sentimental places. 

Good Friday 2018

Yesterday, I got to unwind in Batangas with my family. I started my day with my usual workout. 

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After which, I had breakfast at our hotel’s cafe.  

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The egg white omelette and cinnamon rolls were my favorites! 

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I had local coffee of course. Then, I cleaned up and went to Montemaria for some Holy Week reflection. 

I knitted on the way there.  

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Finally, I saw Our Lady. She was breathtaking.  

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We visited other churches as well during our fime here, and had dinner at the hotel. 

This Asian Spicy Fusilli was divine.  

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So was this blueberry cheesecake! 

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I worked out before bedtime, just because. 

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My view while doing cardio wasn’t too shabby!

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I had a productive day combining prayer, balanced eating, and working out. It was a nice vacation in the country. I look forward to more meaningful breaks on special occasions. 

Revisiting Padre Pio Shrine

Yesterday, I got to visit the Padre Pio Shrine For the second time. This time, I was with my family. 

I started my day with a breakfast takoyaki rice bowl. It was surprisingly delicious! 

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I knitted in the car.  

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And before I knew it, we were already there at the shrine. I purchased a magnet for my collection and a bottle of pain relief oil for a friend. 

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We walked along the Shrine and prayed at the various spots in the compound. My favorite spot there was at the main church, where this huge sign serves as a reminder for everyone. 

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The place holds a special spot in my heart because Padre Pio is a powerful intercessor. His life is also a shining example of the transforming ability of faith. 

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Indeed, I will pray, hope, and remind myself to don’t worry!

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I also bought personalized keychains from this fun stall. 

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I feel blessed to have revisited the Shrine and I am thankful that this time, I am stronger in faith. I will keep on going, because I am confident that Padre Pio will always pray for my intentions.