Sunday, November 29, 2015

286: Outgrowing the Jeans, Tshirt, and Sneakers

That's me back 2012 (in white shirt), and that's me on my friend's wedding reception last Sunday (I did my hair and make up by the way). All through out my life I am more of a tomboy than a girly-girl, maybe it's because I had grown up surrounded by my brother's friends that made me no clue how to act like a girl. I had hope that I'd figure things out if I grow up, however during my highschool and college days I had hormonal acne, and with weight problems that caused me to have a low self-esteem.

I never really bothered to learn about make-up, and fashion because of my low self-esteem, and I was comfortable being boyish. However, right now there's a certain 'want' inside of me that wanted to outgrow the jeans, sneakers, and t-shirts.

Hence, I started buying books, consulting pinterest, and watching youtube videos for tutorials. I still feel puzzled when faced with choices of clothes, and make ups, but I am actually having fun learning them.

I am also glad that my friends helped me when I go shopping. They help me mix and match, and figure what make up works best for me. They even share recommendations, and were honest to say what's bargain, and what looks good on me. I thought if I just do things on my own it would be tough, and it's handy to have a very supporting friends.

If there's anything that I have learned, I guess we have our own pace to break free from our 'shell' to be the person that we wanted to be, and we just need to be patient to wait for that right time. Additionally, it never pains to be humble enough to ask for assistance from your friends. :)

Monday, November 9, 2015

285: Departure.

Image not mine
This month is probably the pivotal moment of my life: Two of my friends are going to get married, a relative ended a good long romance, another relative getting married, and one close friend will be migrating to Australia to be with her husband. When this close friend of mine had sent us a group message that she need to see us immediately because she will be migrating to Australia, it felt like a bucket of ice was doused on my back.

I realized that everyone is going somewhere. I was thinking 'Oh my cows, everyone is moving on to another chapter of their life', and here I am still living with my parents, working on the same company (it's a great company by the way) for 5 years, still single (but mingling), and still day-dreaming.

I'm not sure if others felt that way, that they felt alarmed that they haven't progressed on their lives. I knew people who had been in the same situation all through out their life. I know there's nothing wrong with that, but I thought that I cannot settle down and be content because I am at my best year to 'go out' and explore.

So I have a thought since my last post about 'starting again', I might as well move on a start a new life. I'm crossing my fingers for a new chapter next year!

Bon Voyage everyone!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

284: Start Again.

Wow, 2 months, and 22 days since my last post. I never expected that I would be writing here again soon. But -- well -- I thought that I should after facing some 'dead ends' along my way in this so-called life. I though where-else is the best place to rant, and rave, and feel hopeful again than here in my own blog space? Who knows I may impart some wisdom to others.

Okay so for the past few months, years I have spent my life trying to dip my hands in Entrepreneurship. I've gone through selling stuffs online, joined network marketing, done trading, and recommended buyers for real estate. But for the past few months, I finally have dipped my hands on a real baby project. This baby project will be my first tangible 'small business'.

To say, when I brought up the idea I've had people who are ready to invest. So, knowing that I have support, I've started moving my baby project from idea to writing. However, during consultation, I've come into some 'road-blocks'. There are real life questions thrown at me that I started to doubt if I can really carry out my 'baby' and bring it to fruition: Can I really do it?

To say, that nagging question 'can you really do it?' worked as sledgehammer on my confidence, and courage. That one question totally bothered me all through out my plans that for sometime I've ended up almost abandoning the idea. The fear or failure, and not being able to meet the expectation of my investors had troubled me.

I couldn't move. They say that over thinking results to paralysis, and it does. Since I do not want to be bothered by that nagging question I ended up succumbing to a habit that's not really helpful such as binge reading on romance novels (guilty pleasure!), oversleeping, and procrastinating. These bad habits had become a morphine that allowed me to block this one tough question (among a lot of them to come when I go from writing phase to building phase).

However, yesterday while listening to the accomplishments of my friends, and how others had 'arrived' to a new phase of their life, made me feel coward. I thought that I also wanted to reach some milestones and share it with my friends, therefore, I need to break this addiction of morphia. It's either I keep on cowering, or face them.

So how do I 'start again', first I think it's important to confront myself -- hence this entry -- and admitting that I've had a bad addiction. Second, it's revisiting my 'to do' list, and going back again on what I want to accomplish in long term.Third, it's to focus, and act.

*sigh* It's not too late to start again, anyway. I pray for more courage, strength, and faith this time. Amen.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

283: the Coast Calls: A Quick Get Away to San Juan

If I can move out from the city and live a provincial life, I'd definitely choose to move to La Union. This place is starting to get its way into my heart. In Urbiztondo, I found my other home.

What I particularly love about Urbiztondo is its people. The people there are friendly. It was easy to find friends with the easy living surfers, and local people. In fact, I've made too many errors in riding the right jeepney to my destination but these drivers were nice to take me nonetheless. These drivers didn't even accept my additional payment for the hassle.

So last week I found myself back in this wonderful place. I went there with my good friend to celebrate her birthday. While I stayed twice at Sebay surf, this time I told myself to stay at San Juan Surf School Resort.

If you want to know, the San Juan Surf School Resort is just next to Sebay Surf. The reason why I chose not to book myself here initially is because judging by exterior it looks expensive, so I didn't bother. But when my other friend said that Sebay and San Juan Surf School is almost as the same price, I told myself to give it a go.

.. and I'm glad I did.

While I like Sebay Surf, the San Juan Surf School Resort offers a modern, and classy style. Just as Sebay, the San Juan Resort rooms have a cabled t.v, air-conditioning, fridge, and their shower has a cold and hot temperature dial. For 2, the room was priced as 1,986 PHP (as of July 2015 see prices here). But what I particularly love about the place is its restaurant-bar.

I swear I have weakness for good aired restaurant and bar. I love that some of their tables allows you to have a (partly) view of the beach (but this is where the Sebay beats them in terms of beach view from the bar).


I wish I took more photos! Forgive me though because I swear after the 9 hours travel all I wanted to do was to lie on the bed. So apologies I never thought about taking a picture of the room, and it never crossed my mind. But I would next time. Rest assured though those that you will see in the tripadvisor was enough to give you visual projection of what to expect.

All in all, it's not obvious that I will be back in La Union soon enough, and if you are going to ask me where I will book myself, it's no brain-er because I'll definitely book myself at San Juan Surf School Resort again -- again just because I am a sucker for a good restaurant - bar.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Investment Matters: 3 Reason Why You Should Invest in Arca South

In the metro, it cannot be denied that the expanding projects of developers are popping everywhere. These expanding projects are in fact a good news, because these developers sees the future growth of the economy and the future development in the area. One of the great things in investing in real estate is that it's one form of passive income. But with many projects, being developed where do we actually put our money?

I've particularly set my eyes on Arca South. Here are my 3 main reason why I think Arca South is a great investment.
Arca South in the Future

1. It is being developed by the Ayala Land Inc. Do I need to say more? Ayala Land had proven its credibility in the market for as long as we can remember.  The company started in the industry dated back in 1988's (please see profile info here), and had been expanding projects ever since. We've heard of its projects: Ayala Land Premier, Alveo, Avida, Amaia, and BellaVita. Ayala Land also have contributed in the growth of the following cities: Makati, Taguig, Cebu, Nuvali, and etc., Ayala Land Inc had already made its name in the industry of real estate, if you wanted to feel comfortable as an investor, an Ayala Land project is a sure way to go.

2. They are in pre-development phase. If a project is still in a pre-developed phase the price is still affordable compared to when the project is already completed. One logical example of this scenario is when the BGC was still under developed. A payment terms in that phase is not too painful. However, considering that the BGC is one of the most developed cities, a property, a rent there probably costs as high as they skyscrapers in the area. In fact, according Global Property Guide "In Bonifacio Global City the average price for a 3-bedroom condominium increased by 9.5% to PHP 133,175 (US$ 2,968) per sq. m. (5.3% inflation-adjusted), or a 1.1% q-o-q growth." (reference) This kind of scenario would probably be the same once the Arca South has been finished (projected by 2018). Currently, Ayala Land's AVIDA allows 20% downpayment that is stretched to 36 months payment. an estimated 7000 - 8000 monthly (may vary depending on your terms) may not be a bad investment, if the property will be projected to hike in price once the project is completed.

3. Where it is Located. The Arca South will be located in FTI. The Ayala Land will revolutionized the once known 'bagsakan' to be the next business district in the South of Manila. Additionally, the location will also be accessibility to the three major infrastructures: the Skyway and C5/C6 connection road, the Skyway Exit, and the NLEX-SLEX connection road' (Philstar) makes the place 'in sync' to major cities.

Arc South Map

One of the things that others worry about the place is if it's standing in Fault Line, if this is also your worry, fear not because it was certified by the PHILVOCS that Arca South is not standing along the fault line (See Certification)

If you plan to invest at all, I would recommend to check out the payment terms immediately. Time is expensive, do not wait until the project gets developed as the price increases by 3% per 3 to 6 months. All in all, Arca South is one of the next cities to check out for those who wanted to invest in real estate. 

If you feel that this may be the next investment for you, feel free to contact me, and let's check out.

Monday, June 1, 2015

282: Finding the One in Caramoan

Last weekend my friends and I went to Bicol, then to Caramoan for our summer get away. This vacation is my 3rd and my last summer vacation. Having this place as the last is a great choice for a conclusion.

Before we settled in Caramoan, my friends and I arrived in Bicol last Saturday through Cebu Pacific. We were able to book our flight for 1,700++ (again, thanks to the Promo). I'm not sure how much is the regular cost, but the 1,700++ price to get a once in a lifetime experience is a winning case.

Before we proceeded with activities, my friends and I ate in Bigg's Diner at Albay. The place was a decent restaurant and with a good diner ambiance. Although the location does give you a local ambiance, it however, serves local favorite dish. The one I had was a pork chop with laing. It was the best! I love the laing and amazing soft meat of the pork.

Our first stop in Bicol is the Lignon Hill. This hill was supposed to give you a great view of the Mayon volcano. The ever shy Mayon volcano was not in humor that day, she hid her peak with the clouds all through out our stay. But it was such a majestic view to see her beauty in person.

here are my friends and I in the Lignon Hill
I believe that there are few activities that you can do in the Lignon Hill. I saw that there's a zip line activity and there's map for travelers to check out. We just passed by because it was so hot during that time that we cannot afford to stay longer in the place.

After the Lignon Hill, my friends went to Cagsawa Ruins. The Cagsawa Ruins is actually the historical place that we often see in our books in high school whenever we talk about Bicol. It's great that it's being preserved and kept clean in spite of the many visitors that it had.

During on the Cagsawa Ruins, there are these guys who roams around the place looking for interested tourist who wants to trek the volcano using an ATV. We paid 800 per person, but you can haggle if you are in large group. We were lucky enough that we are 13 and we were able to get the best deal.

The 800 would allow you to trek only on the foot of the volcano, but there's this 1800 price per person that will allow you to trek the 'lava trail'. We travel for a few kilometers and honestly, you'll enjoy the scenic view that you'd want to go even farther. If you'd ask me, we should have gotten the 1800 instead. But the 800 was not bad, at least you get to ride the ATV and have a decent view of the volcano.

My friends and I in the ATV
The one day trip in Bicol was great. The activities that we did were just the tip of the iceberg. I believe that there's so many things that Bicol can offer. It's just unfortunate that we did not stay long as our real goal was to get to Caramoan.

I hope you'll have your chance to immerse yourself in Bicol and get to know it as better as we had because it really deserves to be checked out.

When my friends and I got into Caramoan, one of the things that struck me the most is the scatted little islands, and rock formations. In fact, My friend, who had been to Palawan, said that Caramoan looks like a little 'Coron' . I, however, were in silence as I was trying to marvel on what I am seeing.

Oh, hi there!

Indeed, Caramoan is one of the place that one should visit, as it offers different variety of activity and at the same time experience. In spite of its found fame, thanks to Survivor Franchise, Caramoan remained commercialized. I really pray that the place would keep its provincial, and quiet look and not follow the footsteps of Boracay.

If you are wondering how much I spent for the whole journey, it costs me around 5 thousand++ (not including the airfare, and we are 13 in the team). This 5 thousand includes the stay at Rex Inn (read the review in the tripadvisor here), payment for the island hopping, eat in a hut in the middle of the sea, and souvenir shopping.

What I particularly love about my experience here is that this is where I experienced free diving, riding on top of the jeep, eating in the middle of the sea, and incredible happiness with my friends. I think so far this adventure in Caramoan  is one of my memorable experience ever.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

He dug so deeply into her sentiments that in search of interest he found love, because by trying to make her love him he ended up falling in love with her. Petra Cotes, for her part, loved him more and more as she felt his love increasing, and that was how in the ripeness of autumn she began to believe once more in the youthful superstition that poverty was the servitude of love. Both looked back then on the wild revelry, the gaudy wealth, and the unbridled fornication as an annoyance and they lamented that it had cost them so much of their lives to find the paradise of shared solitude. Madly in love after so many years of sterile complicity, they enjoyed the miracle of living each other as much at the table as in bed, and they grew to be so happy that even when they were two worn-out people they kept on blooming like little children and playing together like dogs.”

― Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude

Friday, May 1, 2015

281: "To me, you'll be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world"

"...To you I'm nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each
other. To me, you'll be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world ..."
- Antoine Saint Exupery ; The Little Prince
I knew that from the time that I've stroked the head of my wonderful dog, I knew it will be the last.

Don't worry Michi. We'll pray to Lord Jesus to heal you, and we'll talk tomorrow. I promise.

The last time I gently brushed my hands on her head, it was the longest. It was unusually the longest time. Maybe it's the fact that I knew deep inside that it will be the last time that I will ever pat my wonderful dog.

Lord Jesus, I pray to you to please heal my dog.

I woke up in the morning with the news that my dog has died. Indeed, God cured her permanently. My dog was with us for 11 years, I knew Jesus has a better plans for her. 11 years being with us wasn't so bad. We had 11 years of good memories. But I miss her terribly. I miss how she would wag her tail enthusiastically when I reach home and would be the first one to greet me.

Oh, Michi. How you took my heart with you. But you are with Jesus now. You are in a better place. Please, say 'hi' to Jesus for me.
I shall see you again, Michi. But not too soon, I'm afraid. I miss you my good friend.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

“I can't stand it to think my life is going so fast and I'm not really living it.” ― Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises

281: Lord Jesus, help me to be able to help your people

April 15 encounter ...

"Kamusta na po?" (How are you?)
"Nako, nabundol ako kahapon. Eto o' namamaga pa yung braso ko." (Oh my, I was hit by a car yesterday. Look, my arms are still sore)

Thus said by the 93 old lady who usually sits outside the Eton Centris Mall. This lady, who had become a friend.

This is the last thing I wanted to hear. Yesterday (April 14) I was looking for her so I can give her the rosary that I told her I'd give her in replacement of what she currently had. I've noticed that the rosary that she's using as a necklace has a broken crucifix. I told her I'd buy her a new one. So I purchased it the last time I went to Manila Cathedral.

When I arrived Monday on my way to the office, I noticed that she wasn't sitting on her usual spot. So I thought I'd just give her the rosary the next day, and then when that day came, she told me the accident that had happened to her.

It was the reason why she was not on her usual spot when I was looking for her.

My heart instantly broke when I saw the bruise that she had on her arm. It was large. I asked her if the one who had ran into her helped her, she said that it was a hit and run.

During that time I was torn between telling her to come with me so I can bring her to the nearest clinic or just give her a cash and go to my office since I cannot - obviously - help her that much (my shift was about to start 30 minutes before I met her).

I reached out to my pocket and gave her a money so she can get herself checked, then I left with a heavy heart.

Here again am I just handing out bills to the person in need. But as I walking away from her I keep on mumbling 'Lord, please help me know how I can help her'. I knew I had to do something.

It took me a while to figure out, but while I was setting up my laptop on my cubicle in the office, I thought about inquiring in the clinic what medication is needed to do if one is suffering from bruises and sores. I bought what she needed and told her what the nurse told me about curing bruises. It was the best thing I can do at the moment.

There are many times that I keep on wondering how I can serve the people that Jesus entrusts me -- us --  to take care of. I keep on wondering because, on my part, I know my limitations (such as capacity to provide, etc.,) But I always pray for Jesus to help me figure out a way -- to be capable to help His people.

For the past few days, I haven't seen Nanay  yet. I pray that she's better. I never had forgotten to pray for her. I hope I can see her this Monday so I can inquire how she is faring.

Friday, April 17, 2015

“Joy is what God fills us with when we trust in Christ.” — John Piper

Taken from my current trip in La Union
Have you ever wished that you had nine lives, and that you could live them all differently, but in one lifetime? Or you could follow each thread of your theoretically alternate life in a theoretical multiverse, just to see what it was like, and where it would lead?

Monday, April 13, 2015

280: Travel on: the Sunset of Palaui

Long overdue! My good friends and I went to Tuguegarao and to Palaui, Cagayan during the lent week (March 21 to 25).

If there's something that I can remember about Tuguegarao it's how generous the servings are when they serve meals. And of course, the temperature. It's scorching hot. If you want to experience raw, undiluted summer, if you want to experience the 'real' summer temperature go to Tuguegarao. But besides, the heat, the place was extraordinary. I hope I had time to explore it thoroughly. We went to Tuguegarao as our first stop towards our real goal -- Palaui Island in sta. Ana, Cagayan.

First, how did we end up on the idea of Palaui -- of all islands! To say, Palaui was featured as a spot for Survivor. So yeah, they had a season Survivor: Cagayan. Thank God for seat sale we were able to book Tuguegarao to reach the Palaui Island for only a thousand and few hundreds.

On the Palaui Island, we've hiked to Cape Engano Lighthouse, and I swear the great view of the island didn't fail to take my breath away. The faint sound of the waves crashing below, and the wind with a hint of saltiness from the sea, you'd wish you can take the moment on your pocket so you could relive the moment every time the world becomes unkind. This is also the moment that you can marvel on God's creation.

The view on the lighthouse
One of the fields that we crossed going to the lighthouse, reminds me of the Hobbit
On sunset: whenever I go to an island, I always take time to see how the sun sets there. The sunset in Anguib beach (somewhere in Palaui), is quiet.  It's not as grand and as boastful as the sunset in La Union, but it was quiet and placid. The sun hid behind the clouds until it finally and quietly waved good bye. The unobtrusive sea accompanied the quiet goodbye of the sun, is a perfect time for someone to meditate. Hence, it was the moment that I talked to God.

There are many things that the Palaui island offers. You can snorkle, and dive. Also, Palaui has a mangrove that you should not miss. When you get there make sure that you savor the moment because you become one of the nature. The place takes you to its 'paradise', and allows you to experience it if only you'd allow yourself. It's quiet, unassuming beauty is humbling. This journey is a wonderful chapter of my life. It allowed me (again) to experience things I haven't experience before -- something to take with me when I grow older.

See more of my photos in Tuguegarao and Palaui Island on my Facebook

Sunday, April 5, 2015

279: "Be not afraid. Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. Behold the place where they laid Him." - Mark 16:6

Photo taken when we were in Palaui, Cagayan

Jesus has been risen.

Finally we have reached the Easter Sunday after 40 days of sacrifices and of spiritual journey, we have finally arrived at this moment. I finally have arrived at this moment. I ended my Holy Week by attending the Easter Vigil in Manila Cathedral last night (and it was presided by his eminence, Cardinal Tagle). Attending the mass in Manila Cathedral became a devotion ever since the Holy Week kicked off. I go there to attend the mass on early Saturdays (as time permits). So far, during the lent, I was able to carry out the devotion and had concluded it yesterday.

Additionally, since the 40 days had ended, I had the Facebook application re-installed on my cellphone, and I started browsing my notifications.

Back to Facebook

To say, I should feel more relieved now I got back to my old self, but to be honest I felt unfamiliar with who I was before. After the 40 days spiritual journey, I felt like a different person. Looking on my Facebook, it felt like I wasn't the person who was in there. I even felt like a stranger to the people whom I have seen on my newsfeed because of my lack of updates on their lives. It's a strange feeling. It's something that I guess I need to ponder at. But if there's something that I am sure of, it's that I lost my interest in Facebook. I even wonder why I could not live not checking the notifications before.

What are the things that I did during the Holy Week and what Jesus revealed to me?

Saturdays with the Immaculate Conception

Inside the Cathedral, during one of my visits

One of the things that maybe non-catholics wouldn't understand (and I believe this would remain a discussion) is how Catholics are devoted to Mother Mary. I, myself, also wondered about her significance. However, through my prayers, I was lucky enough to get the answer (you may read here). My answer, of course, came through other's better knowledge, and me seeking.

In here I pray for Mother Mary to pray for me to Her loving son Jesus Christ in order for my soul to be forgiven, I also mention to Her to pray to Jesus Christ my petitions. I talk to Mother Mary as how I would talk to my mother. I treat my relationship to Her as how I would treat my real Mother. However, of course, I still have failings. But I know in my heart that She continues to pray for me as well.

Honestly, ever since I upped my relationship with Her, during my most heartfelt prayers, I would end up crying for no reason. There's one very significant moment that one time after my work (my work ends at 12 midnight) I decided to stay for another 5 hours in the office in order to attend the 7AM mass. When the time struck 05:20AM I left the office in Quezon City and arrived in Manila Cathedral by 06:30AM, when I arrived on the church, exhausted from lack of sleep and travel, I uttered "Mother" in relief, and wept. It was an incredible weeping (here's an info how far I work from Manila Cathedral). I prayed the rosary and my tears continue to fall every time I say my prayers.

Under the Starry Sky

When I was reading the book The Jesuis Guide to Almost Everything one of things (among many things) that I adopted is how St. Ignatius would pray among the stars. I felt that I should also do the same.

my caption

There's one thing I have learned while praying at night under the many stars that's scattered in the black ink sky, it's so quiet. You know the saying, 'in silence we find God'? -- it is indeed true. While everyone is asleep, when I go outside our terrace (right after I take my shower), I would pull out a chair sit there look up at the stars and would utter 'Lord Jesus look upon your lowly servant as I say my prayers to You',  and for some wild imagination, I would imagine that Lord Jesus would turn His head down and would indeed look upon me.

I've mentioned earlier that to Mother Mary I pray for Her to pray for me to Lord Jesus, what I say when I pray to Jesus is how I would talk to Him as my savior. I talk to Him of my gratitude, of my weakness, of my sins, of the Christian community and how the Christians are being persecuted, I talk to Him of my relationship with Him, and I pray for Him to help me that 'I may be able to live on His words and His teachings in order for me to bridge others to Him', and of course for Him to strengthen my faith.

During this quiet times at night, a bucket of tears would be shed. This is even the first time that I cried while talking to Him about our brothers and sisters in other countries who's being persecuted for their faith. This is something that I never thought I'd be able to do, and every time the prayer ends it always makes my heart at peace.

Find God in Nature

My friends and I recently went to Palaui, Cagayan (more on that next time). When we went there my goals were actually to pray during the sunset, pray at night, and enjoy with my friends. I almost didn't go because of Financial constrains but because I really, really want to try to pray among the nature (this is also mentioned in the Ignatian Spirituality -- praying among the Nature), I pursued.

Circumstances made it hard for me to pray during the travel for one thing: our first few days ended up staying in Hotel (so basically not yet in the nature). Second, the shore was too far where we first stayed. Third, when I was already underneath the stars, there was a rain. However, one time I found a perfect moment to talk to Jesus, while walking on the shore and the sun was setting I ended up talking to Him. It was a perfect solemn and quiet moment.

There's something I have realized, that when I talk to Jesus it's hard to stop! Sometimes I even feel chatty that maybe I was already confusing Jesus because I keep on jumping from one topic to another. But it was amazing.

When I was about to end my talk to Jesus, I closed my eyes as a tears rolled down my cheeks and said 'Jesus, thank You. Thank You for this moment.'

This was taken after my 'talk' with Jesus

A Conscious Decision

I remember before during my college years, while talking to this person I admired, and our eyes met I told myself that I love that person, and I will love that person. It was the first time that I realized that love is also a conscious decision. I learned that Love is not only an emotion, but it's a decision, and that I will love that person.

When I made the decision to be in relationship with God, it was like that moment too. It was a conscious decision that I will love Him, when I laid my eyes on Him.

But like any relationship, there will be a trying times, challenges, and temptations to stray and for me to continuously disappoint Him. But like what I say in my prayers, I pray for Jesus to 'not to let my eyes wander away from Him'.

The Holy Week might have ended, but this is just a beginning for my spiritual Journey.

Let's pray for each other. :)

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

“As long as you are proud you cannot know God.” ― C.S. Lewis

"I want you to know that I love you even when you are not yet born." Letters from the past. While decluttering because my dad will repaint my room, I found these stacks of letters I had written to my future children and husband 2 years ago. The message was so poignant. ❤
Father, let not my eyes stray away from You, my Lord. For it is You to whom I draw comfort.
Sail me on the sea of clouds. #airplane #travel #letsgo ✈
Should I, should I not? 😊

Monday, March 30, 2015

278: Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!

There will come a moment in our life that we would wake up as a different person.
For the past few days I had been having a hard time thinking of what to write here. The reason why I found it hard is because I am afraid that this blog all turn out to be spiritual because apparently, at this moment of my life, the most important matter to me right now is my faith.

Obviously, Lord Jesus humored me when I prayed for Him to 'strengthen my faith', because when He granted my prayer, the only subject I could think of for the past few months is my relationship with Him. I cannot even imagine getting on the day without praying (the rosary, daytime prayer/vespers). I do not pray for the sake of praying, or getting my prayers/intentions granted but because I wanted to be closer to Him, I want to put Him in the center of my life, to be in relationship with Him. So right now, I find it a bit hard not to talk about Jesus.

This is where the problem comes in.

I know it shouldn't be a problem because considering that I own this blog, I can pretty much write about anything here, but I always wanted to have a niche. I wanted to connect to people -- not just to Catholics/Christians -- but to everyone. I wanted to tell my journey as a human being traveling in this world, but it's not the case now.

I guess moving forward you'll most likely read entries about my journey with Jesus. I know it might not appeal to everyone, but it's okay, I understand. But I hope for those who can relate will stick with me. This is, besides, for Jesus.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

“The darker the night, the brighter the stars, The deeper the grief, the closer is God!” - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The burnt sunset of Sienna.
Fly little bird. Fly!

This book taught me a lot about praying, contemplating, and living ala Jesuits style. 😊
If you are the kind of reader that allows their book to influence them, this one is tough. How Jorge Bergoglio (Pope Francis) defined Humility was way beyond my imagination. One of the toughest was (totally) surrendering your pride thru self-accusation. He also draws inspiration through the words of st. Doroteus of Gaza. It was good, but really challenging. #popefrancis #book

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

277: On my birthday and on Ignatian Spirituality

My good friend Monique is the first person to give me a cake. YAY.
I've turned 26 today! It's amazing to be 26, although at one second I realized I am 4 years away from reaching my 30th. There was some sort of an alarm when that thought crossed my mind. I hope by that time I have a wider experience in terms of life, career, and spirituality. There are many things that I am grateful for, but what I am ultimately grateful for is how my faith turned my life around. The drastic change with my relationship with God had made me feel at peace. There are still uncertainties with the future (of course) but I actually don't feel threatened, nor afraid for what the future awaits for me. What had helped me build my relationship is this book written by Fr. James Martin - The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything:

I accidentally saw this book in the religious section in a bookstore. What caught my attention is its title. I thought why not try to be inspired living life according to the teachings of St. Ignatius, besides he is the founder of Society of Jesus (Jesuits), and it's the religious order of Pope Francis?

There were so many revelations when I finished the book. The things that I learned in the book resonates so much with me that I want to carry the messages all through out my life, that's why in the picture you can see that I had written a lot of references.

What I love about the book is that it was written simply, and the examples that Fr. James Martin made it easy for me to relate to. The book taught me about the different approach of praying, how to see God in everything I do, handling relationship with others, being detach from things that does not lead me to God, and basically almost everything. This book helped me improve my relationship with God that led me to be at peace.

If you are wondering what's Ignatian spirituality, it's hard to lay out because it's huge, but here's how Fr. James Martin said about (Ignatian spirituality):
So if anyone asks you to define Ignatian spirituality in a few words, you could say that it is: Finding God in all things Becoming a contemplative in action Looking at the world in an incarnational way Seeking freedom and detachment.
 I definitely would recommend this if you want to be in relationship with God ala Jesuits style.  I am actually excited reading further. I really want to be closer to God as much as I can. :)

Monday, March 2, 2015

"Although the life of a person is in a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God." - Pope Francis

The beautiful Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. First time to visit this yesterday after the concert.
I was lucky enough to witness a wedding, and I was able to pray to Mother Mary before they closed the door of the church.
I hope to see Her closer soon, and I look forward in attending the mass too.
Watercolor students for the day. I am glad that I gave this one a shot. I enjoyed and learned so much.
Thanks to Liz of Project Vanity for teaching us, and Tin Tin for inviting me to join.
My simple pleasures: random toys and figures. Hoarding more curiosities and tinkeries in the future.
Follow me on instagram.
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