I Shawl Return

Yesterday, I just finished crocheting my first shawl. I followed a pattern on Youtube, and purchased the yarn and hook online from The Attic Yarn and Craftery. This is proof that technology and a traditional handicraft can coexist. Online shopping for notions and tutorials have worked for me to improve as a crocheter and become more passionate for the craft.

While most people encourage me to take on more advanced projects such as cardigans and amigurumi, I have happily carried on with scarves because I enjoy crocheting while reading, listening to podcasts, and watching movies. It is quite challenging to follow a pattern while engaging in another pastime. Since multitasking is the way I go, I prefer to work freestyle and enjoy more hobbies in the process.

This is why this shawl is remarkable for me. While it is imperfect, I have followed a pattern from beginning to end. It was admittedly less fun than crocheting while listening to a comedy podcast. However, I realized that I can still follow directions and upskill in a digital medium.

I still have a lot of room to grow, and it is comforting to know that I can make something that it is intricately instructed. I have restored my faith in myself thanks to this shawl.

This won’t be the last pattern I will follow. For now, I am beginning a new scarf using the same hook but a totally new ball of yarn.

Here’s to new skills and beginnings!

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Innovation Journey

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Yesterday, I visited the newly-opened HiFi Campus at the College of Saint Benilde. I was there for two talks: the Innovator’s DNA Coffee Collab and The Founders’ Journey to Impact Entrepreneurship Engaged Talk. Both forums were informative, but it was the first one that really resonated with me.

Ms. Judith Claridades hosted the Innovator’s DNA afternoon. We were composed of individuals from various backgrounds, age groups, and perspectives. We had an interest in how innovation and the mindset that commands problem solving through design can improve our lives and uplift our present human condition.

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Ms. Claridades focused on the importance of the self in the innovator’s journey. Being self-aware is the first step in bringing forth positive change. After all, it is only by effectively improving our own selves that we can begin sharing our skills, talents, and ideas to help others along the way.

It was also worth noting that empathy is essential in innovation. We cannot influence others if we are stuck in our own worlds and refuse to feel the pain that others have. It was humbling to be reminded that innovation is not just an act that benefits our physical beings, but our spiritual growth as well. When we help others, we feed our soul, and this is how we leave legacies that make the world a better place.

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The Founders’ Journey to Impact Entrepreneurship was also interesting as Anna Meloto-Wilk, the president of Human Nature (a brand I love so much, that I actually sell their products on my online store- BUY NOW!) was part of the panel. I’ll never get tired of listening to Human Nature’s story from its humble beginnings to being one of the leading social enterprises today. As a Core Advocate for the brand, it is inspiring to watch our president unceasingly sharing our values to audiences that need more goodness in their lives.

As a blogger and freelance writer, I am always looking for inspiration to improve my craft and grow my mindset. It is always a treat to feed my brain with stories that uplift others while discussing how problems were solved through design thinking and empathy. Innovation should not be a big, lofty idea that is beyond everyone’s reach. Rather, it must be something that we practice by habit and instinct with each endeavor that we tackle each day.

We can all be innovators, if only we are determined to share what we know and believe in!

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Crochet in the Sky

It’s my first time at Boracay! I started my day with black coffee before boarding my flight with my mom and maternal relatives. 

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It was a dream come true to crochet in an airplane. I enjoyed my leisurely flight as I hooked my way to landing. 

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I even crocheted in the ferry. 

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Boracay is breathtakingly beautiful! I can’t get enough of the clear waters and fine white sand. 

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Our bedroom came with a teddy bear named Bogart. It was a fun touch that I immediately warmed up to. 

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I can’t wait to explore the island more as I crochet, knit, and enjoy!

Stitch And Smile

Yesterday, I took some time to have a latte while crocheting. 

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I slowed down to meet Power Plant’s friendly K9, Basha. 

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And I also finished weaving this piece, which is my second one off the loom. 

Living slow doesn’t necessarily mean going off the grid. It could be as simple as quietly enjoying a hobby over coffee, noticing the simple joys in life, and weaving the ends of a project together. As long as I can stitch while conquering each challenge that comes my way, I know that I can smile through anything. 

Father’s Hey

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It wasn’t easy celebrating the first Father’s Day since my dad’s passing last month. I felt very sad, but also lucky to still be alive and able to commemorate an important day with my family. I spent time with my mom and maternal grandfather, and we grabbed lunch at a coffee shop that we frequent in his area. I had a beer and crocheted while waiting for our food.

Life is a constant battle against ourselves. I could have wasted the day and simply refused to commemorate my late father’s memory. However, I chose to get over my sadness and celebrated with my grandfather, who’s still alive.

May we never forget to spend time with those who are still with us, and to create meaningful memories.

BDJ Magic in Me

It’s not everyday that I get to have my pictures professionally taken. I’m so glad that I attended Belle de Jour Power Planner (BDJ)’s housewarming party the other day. Their photographer did an awesome job in capturing us guests on camera. I enjoyed the party, the photo shoot, and the whole experience! 

This definitely won’t be the last BDJ event I’ll attend. I had too much fun and I got to meet many like-minded women. Now it’s time to continue making plans that let us shine and thrive!

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Magical Plans

Yesterday, I dropped by The Study by Enderun to get some planning done. It was indeed inspiring to work on my bullet journal with a cuppa on hand at a stylish coworking space. 

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I also managed to crochet on my desk for the day. I enjoyed my stay, and the people there are so accommodating. I highly recommend this space if you prefer having coworking access inside a mall, right in the heart of Ortigas. 

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Then, I attended the BDJ Housewarming Party. Belle de Jour Power Planner or simply BDJ is a local planner brand that has an online community of goal-digging women. It was an honor to be a part of their new office’s opening. 

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They had a planner customization area where I also had a housewarming of sorts for my Foxy Fix planner. 

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It was inspiring to make my planner more colorful by using their washi tapes and stickers. 

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There was also a photo studio where I got to have a professional photographer take pictures of me with my planner and yarn. 

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Speaking of crafts, it was wonderful to meet Janna, the talented artist behind local sticker brand Crafts Delight. If you want stickers for your planner or journal, check out her page and support her emerging brand!

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Lastly, I got to have my oracle cards read and I got the Diana and Krishna cards- gentle reminders for me to stay focused and to expect the best possible outcome. 

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It is important for me to write down my plans in order to be fully aware of my path. Attending a coworking open house and housewarming party for a planner company were lovely opportunities to get centered and remind myself of the magic that I am capable of executing (just like the event hashtag, #bdjmagicinme). 

Here’s to more plans and motivational messages from the universe! 

Making Mistakes

I recently finished making this crochet sampler featuring the alpine stitch. It was a few rows in before I realized that the stitch was not fun for me to execute. I knew then that I was only making a sampler, and not a scarf. And that’s okay. 

Making mistakes isn’t supposed to be some awful sentence. In fact, it is just a normal part of the journey. I made mistakes in the sense that I chose a stitch that I didn’t like, and the yarn I used was prone to knots. Now, I know which stitches to stick to, and what yarn will work best for my lifestyle. 

And if I will make mistakes, I know that learning from them makes it all worthwhile. It also wouldn’t hurt if I have a cup of Sagada coffee by my side.  

Here’s to more learning and awakening! 

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Mentoring Lunch

Yesterday, I had the time to do some brisk walking at the UP campus. 

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I was able to burn some calories before my lunch at Sunnies Cafe. I got to do some crocheting before meeting with my friends.  

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I had a lovely lunch with my uni mentor Mitzie and her niece Maiko. It was nice to catch up with friends after my dad’s recent passing. 

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No visit to Sunnies Cafe is complete without some selfies in their famous washroom. 

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I got to buy Sunnies Face’s new Airblush after lunch. 

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I also got to offer eggs at St. Clare Monastery. 

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I bought carioca, a local street food consisting of fried sticky rice. It was a delicious afternoon snack. 

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Before going to bed, I brushed my teeth using this bamboo toothbrush that I bought from social enterprise Rags 2 Riches. 

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I know that by continuing my passions and meeting my friends from time to time, I can carry on with life after the storm. 

NAIA Work Day 1

Yesterday, I had my first day as a NAIA Buyer Services Representative for the IFEX 2019 (food expo). My first time to be a NAIA rep was last April for Manila FAME. I am thankful to CITEM for the opportunity to serve our country once again and to return to work in such a unique way. 

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I got my pass to assist buyers from overseas. During my downtime, I got to crochet, eat, and get to know my shift partner, Alyssa. I also got to chat with airport staff Jang who kindly helped me with my job for the next four days. 

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After work, I treated our loyal helper Racquel to dinner, coffee, and a movie at UP Film. 

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I enjoyed my day at work and with our helper in the movies. It was another productive day. I know that with days that are balanced such as this one, I can manage to live a good life amidst all the challenges that I recently faced. 

Knots and Dogs

Yesterday was my first visit to Barkin’ Blends Dog Cafe since my dad’s passing. It was bittersweet because I was at their other branch when my dad passed away. I felt the healing power of dogs and their dedication is admirable. Of course, the first doggo I hugged was my favorite one, Ella.  

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Later during the day, I finished crocheting the scarf I was making using one of the yarns from my Rosario Yarn Adventure

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With dogs and crafts, I know that I will be able to carry on just fine.  

Grip on Grit

Yesterday, I had breakfast at SGD Coffee in the Maginhawa area. I was reminded of the grit that is inherent in me, as I saw the bracelet on my stack. 

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The cafe was a lovely tribute to the mountains in the middle of the summery city. 

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I had my usual SGD black as I crocheted. 

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I also got myself an oatmeal cookie. It was to die for. 

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If you need strong coffee, and chunky oatmeal cookie, and a quiet space for working and reflecting, SGD is your best bet. Not an ad, I am simply a fan of the place. Do check it out soon!

Picturing Happiness

I spent the weekend at my best friend Luti’s condo. Our friend Amabelle was in town (she’s based in Batangas), so we watched Netflix while catching up. 

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Luti’s condo is right in the middle of the city. It’s also near a couple of malls that I frequent. 

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The sunrise looks pretty from her window. 

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We did some brisk walking early Sunday morning.  

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I also bumped into my friend from Human Nature, Cindy. 

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We had breakfast at UP’s local resto, Chocolate Kiss.  

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Their tsokolate (hot chocolate) was delicious. 

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So was this longganisa brekkie plate.  

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We ordered cakes in honor of our late friend Diane’s birth anniversary.  

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It was also a pleasant surprise to see the photo I submitted to Manila bulletin get published.  

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I needed a cuppa after our heavy meal, so I got myself an iced latte from Nomu.  

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It’s a well-balanced cuppa! I highly recommend it. 

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Back in the condo, I was even able to do some crocheting.  

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Later during the day, we went to the mall and I donated this Project Aral kit with slippers. It has become my tradition to donate kits every year. Hahahahaha  

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I had yummy burger steak from Bigger Better Burgers.  

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I managed to find a pretty floor. 

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And I witnessed a beautiful sunset.  

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I had quite a lovely weekend. Thank you Luti! 

Toast to Life

Yesterday, I was joined by my mom and maternal relatives for a day of unwinding. We visited the church where my parents were married.  

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Then, we had lunch at Livestock for some delicious comfort food.  

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We transferred to Hello Kitty Cafe for dessert and coffee.  

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I also managed to crochet throughout the day.  

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It is possible to go on living with family at my side.  Despite the pain of losing a loved one, I can carry on with life, one day at a time.   

Faith and Family

I am thankful for family during this difficult time. My cousin Van sent us pastries, and I’ve been having delicious bread for brekkie. 

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I am thankful for our helpful Racquel who had helped me through thick and thin. 

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I am thankful for street food, such as these potato chip skewers. 

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I am thankful for knit and crochet. 

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I was able to give my makes to my relatives from the US. 

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I am thankful for a friend I met online whose ministry is to share wooden holding crosses to the sick and their families. 

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I am grateful for the gift of life. I am thankful for time with my terminally-ill father. I am happy that I can still share memories with my family. 

We are all in this together.  

NAIA Work Day 3

Yesterday was the final one of my three-day stint as a NAIA Buyer Services Representative. I watched the sunrise at the airport while knitting. 

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Then, I manned our booth and welcomed arrivals with a smile.  

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I had Jollibee’s halo-halo sundae and brewed coffee for dessert during lunch.  

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I attended mass during my break at the airport chapel.  

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Then, I got to finish crocheting this scarf during my shift. 

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I had maruya (fried sweet bananas) and brewed coffee at the cafeteria before close of business. 

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Then, I rode the bus to World Trade Center. 

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We had our debriefing at the venue itself. I was giddy to be back at Manila FAME. 

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After our meeting, we got to explore the fair.  

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All our hard work for the past three days was worth it once I saw the fair. I was blown away by the astounding exhibitors and the artistry of the Philippines.  

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I am proud to be part of this event, and I have a renewed love for country after this.  

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For dinner, I grabbed a beef bowl at Yoshinoya before calling it a day. 

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It was an honor to serve our country and witness the capability of our artists. I am proud to be Filipino!  

NAIA Work Day 2

Yesterday was my second one as a NAIA Buyer Services Representative in behalf of CITEM. I got to spend time again at the airport while observing passengers as they go about their day.  

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I got to crochet to entertain myself between guests, and during my breaks. 

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I also got to have halo halo sundae and coffee for dessert at Jollibee NAIA.  

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It was tiring, but fulfilling to finish my second day at work.  

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I am enjoying work so far, as I am already adjusting to the daily grind. This will be helpful when I start my day job soon at a company near home. 

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I can’t wait to start working soon, and this is the best way to learn how to get along with colleagues and stakeholders. Mabuhay! 

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NAIA Work Day 1

Yesterday, I got to experience working at the airport for the very first time! I am a NAIA Buyer Services Representative for CITEM, and it was a privilege to return to work in such a distinguished manner.  

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This three-day stint has appealed to me because I personally love CITEM and believe in its vision to provide hope to the Philippines through design. It is an honor to serve the country for a few days, and to assist buyers who are interested to support our local businesses.  

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I was thrilled that my crochet hook made it through the X-ray machines!

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I was able to eat brekkie at Jollibee.  

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I even got to watch the sunrise! 

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I started my shift at 6AM sharp. 

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My partner, Frabelle, was a trooper! I am lucky to be paired with a bright and fun person. 

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We definitely worked together to welcome buyers and assist them in their requirements from the airport to the hotel shuttles. 

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And as a P2P fan, I was lucky to experience our new airport buses. I am thankful for this opportunity because I learned heaps on dealing with government employees, observing protocol, welcoming very important buyers, and promoting Filipino hospitality. 

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What a beautiful way to return to work! Here’s to more opportunities to come!

The Attic Adventure

Yesterday, I was invited to visit The Attic Yarn and Craftery in Marikina City. 

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I’ve been a client of this local yarn store ever since I began knitting and reacquainted myself with crochet last year. After buying their yarns at The Craft Central, I have since directly ordered from them online. Since then, I’ve become their friend in real life. 

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It was a dream come true to step inside their cozy “attic” space. There were yarns everywhere!

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It was heaven on earth! 

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The owners, Tita Ces and Ceryl, are vintage fans. I especially marveled over their refurbished typewriters. 

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I received a lovely handmade present from the owners. 

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I also ate lunch with them and had the best tinapa pasta I’ve ever had (so far).

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For dessert, we had flourless chocolate cake from a local pastry shop. 

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It was to die for.

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It was wonderful to see their yarns and winders in person. 

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More than having the pleasure of buying from them directly and not paying for shipping this time around, it was the friendship that I have fostered with Tita Ces and Ceryl that I truly treasure. I had a magical day, and I’m sure that this won’t be the last time that I will visit them in Marikina. 

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Friends and hobbies like knitting and crocheting make life sweeter! 

Stitching Errands

Yesterday, I ran some errands with my helper. But first, I had my photo taken at the SM North Towers Art Walk. This mural was painted by Drew Europeo. 

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I got to crochet and treat my helper out to lunch at a Greek restaurant, where we had healthy brown rice and quinoa bowls. 

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We were in luck as there was an exhibit of relics at the Podium, with reliquaries on loan from The Reliquarium in Marikina.  

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Then, we shared a big bucket of popcorn and watched Eerie, a Filipino horror film directed by Mikhail Red. It was a beautifully goth film. I highly recommend it, and yes, I survived it even if I’m not typically into the horror genre. 

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Life is better if we treat our helpers like family and share meaningful experiences with them. I may blur her photo on social media for privacy reasons, but I treat her like my own blood.  

Here’s to celebrating more small wins and stitching goals!