Sunday, November 29, 2015

Beautiful Sunday # 188 - Last for November

It was another long weekend here. I initially thought that I will become another useless couch potato. Plans abruptly changed before Friday ended. In a snap, the weekend was filled with meet ups, celebrations and a few surprises.

Gifts from my Korean friend, Jenny! - Jenny is my Korean penfriend back in High School. I can't remember why and how we stopped exchanging letters. A decade after working, I decided to reconnect with Jenny. I attempted to send a letter again. Much to my surprise, my letter reached her. The heavens connived with us, Jenny was assigned to the Philippines for work. I finally met her  last August .The year is about to end and Jenny is scheduled to leave. I took advantage of the weekend to meet her for the last time in Manila. I'm praying that we will meet again, but this time in her hometown in South Korea. 

Thank you for the gifts Jenny! 

I received my first Christmas present! - If Marieken gave me my first Christmas card, Terra gave me my first Christmas gift. I love it Terra! I'm the proudest and happiest owner of your masterpiece.

Old Game Cards - I purchased this along the streets of Sta. Cruz Manila for Php 2 each. Although initially, I thought that they are vintage game cards. When I googled I Spy, I discovered that the cards are still available in a few online shops. Hahaha Nevertheless, I still love the vintage feel of the cards.

For those who were born from 1995 onwards, can you still identify this machine? ;)  I discovered that our old machine is still perfectly working.

Everything old school, a typewriter and my weekly dose of postcards - After weeks of having an empty mail, the work week ended with a happy mail box. 

Thank you Marieken! - The postcard does not look like a freebie at all. I love the design and the message behind it.

My first postcard from Sri Lanka!

And yes, Terra you have always been one of my sources of rare sunshine

This vintage postcard dates back 1966. I will blog about this on my next post. 

I finally found a nice decorative birdhouse! This will become a part of my new project at home. 

I cannot remember the last time I wore a rubber shoes. It made me feel like a kid again.

The family feasted over this forever favorite, Mango Bravo from Conti's

To be young, wild and free! It was my first time to join an event from Hydro Manila #WeMakeItRain. I have no regrets at all, the "water experience" changed everything. :) 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Beautiful Sunday 187 - Thankful for the week long break

I was one of the lucky corporate slaves who benefited from the week long holiday. Although I still reported for work last Monday. I have no complains because coming to work felt like another ordinary day. My life was way better than my colleagues who came from the Southern parts of Manila. I have friends and colleagues who had their own share of the worst commuting and driving nightmares. This is just one of the rare times I love being a northerner. :) I may be deprived of all the best things that happen in Makati, Taguig, and Alabang. But life turned out to be less stressful. 

My Facebook feed has been filled with updates of friends who had their own out-of-town getaways. In my case and as always, I became a full blown couch potato. Haha I enjoyed my quiet and relaxing time at home. I watched some Korean drama series, I attended to some errands, met a freelance client, did some freelance work, did a little Christmas shopping, and had a great time with my dear friend AK. Time was slow and life was stress free. I'm looking forward to have the same experience over the Christmas break. Count a few more weeks, it's my favorite time of the year again. Meanwhile, here are the few beautiful things that made the past week. Hopefully, a preview of the better things to come over the last few weeks of this year.

Home :) - An ugly wall and my Dad's bike I've been staring everyday. When will I probably learn how to use this?

For the first time, I love SM's shopping bag.

I'm becoming addicted to stripes lately. Just don't mind my protruding belly and widening body. I've always associated black and white stripes with Kate Spade.

Laid back weekend with my friend AK, we love Triple O's cookies and cream shake

Forgive me for I have sinned :p

I love how Tickles redesigned their shop. I love the vintage carnival theme!

I love the white interiors and the balloons in this paper and stationery shop. 

The perfect staircase for all book lovers!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Beautiful Sunday # 186 - More than enough

I have a lot to write. I have a lot say. Or maybe, what I really meant was, I have a lot to vent out. But last Sunday's sadness has to end. There are some things I never imagined to happen. It didn't help that I have the tendency to overanalyze everything. How I wish I could unlearn even just an inch of this blessing or curse? If other people regret having an active and open third eye, my struggle lies in my expertise to overanalyze even probably the simplest situation. Although sometimes I have to say that this struggle gives me some benefits especially when dealing with huge amount of data and information. (Hello, freelance works!) Hahaha I can detect unusual data patterns and generate insights that surprises everyone. Maybe if every overanalyses I made translates to thousand of pesos, then I have nothing to complain about. Hahahahaha

This Swiss Chocolate Cake from Becky's will forever appear in my blog and social media accounts. Pardon the repetitiveness but this is one of the few chocolate cakes that captured my weirdest taste buds. And this book from Paul Arden is always worth rereading. Consider it as a nice Christmas gift to your friends and colleagues. 

Speaking of books, I dropped by the bookstore last weekend and discovered a sequel from my favorite The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I read the Stieg Larsson series. I was aware that he already passed away so I was surprised to find this sequel. I would love to read The Girl in the Spider's Web even though it was already authored by another person, David Lagercrantz. Anyone who have read this recent sequel? 

It's another pair of flats and another book worth reading every now and then. I discovered this brand of shoes through a friend's Instagram post. A bit expensive but for the benefit of my hometown's struggling shoe industry, I believe it's worth the little splurge. :)... Trying to justify my shopaholic attack Hahahaha

The words of Lang Leav's Lullaby! 

And recently, I found appreciation to Andrea Kay's Work's a Bitch and Then You Can Make it Work

I want to do something but I'm afraid it wouldn't work out. I've been traumatized by someone lately. 

Last Friday night, I was surprised to encounter some quotes and lessons about leadership from an action movie?!

Mission Impossible Rogue Nation was a revelation for me! My only regret, I should have watched it on the big screen. And this quote, I have yet to ... never mind Hahahahaha 

I made this post on a Saturday night. A Saturday after a Payday Pay-Your-Bills Friday Hahahaha Whenever I have a little money to spare, Saturday dinner means a family cheat day. We had a great food from KFC while watching (forever) MMK?!? Hahahaha  I may still be unwell, but life is still good. My family is more than enough! :)  

Monday, November 9, 2015

Empire Fashion Cafe

It was one of those unplanned weekends. After attending to some errands, me and my cousins found ourselves at Lilac Street, the famous food hub in Marikina. We decided to check the place that has caught our attention several times. It was a fashion boutique that also houses a coffee shop. 

Whoever thought of combining fashion and coffee is brilliant 

While I love the business idea, I initially thought that the fashion merchandise will not appeal to me. From the outside, I believe that the items might not be suited for my age, widening belly and preferences... always too old and boring hahaha Surprise of surprises, I was able to purchase a nice top. :) 

The entire shop is filled with different independent sellers, most of them are also selling through their respective Instagram accounts. As it appears to me, it's a place where Instagram sellers are gathered in one place.

Although there are a variety of sellers one thing to appreciate is the centralized payment center. They issue official receipts and even accepts credit card payments.

They have clothes, shoes, bags, fashion accessories, cosmetics and a few items from Ikea.  

I also saw a few designer items from Kate Spade, Lacoste and Michael Kors, 

And because I don't drink coffee, these served as my own heaven

The slice of sans rival didn't disappoint. I love it!

This space rarely becomes available. :)

Although most of the clothes didn't appeal to my age and preferences, I will still come back to Empire Fashion Cafe. I love the variety of cakes and the overall vibe of the place. 

You can visit Empire Fashion Cafe's website for more details. 

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Beautiful Sunday # 185 - How to heal

Less than two months before the year ends, I thought I already had enough of those workweeks and weekends trying my best to hide those tears. But I have been tested again. The highlight of another struggle happened last Friday. I used to like Fridays because it meant the last day of the workweek. Unfortunately, last Friday gave me another source of agony. 

I have been tempted to write. I have been tempted to vent out in my Facebook account. At that time, my tears were overpowering me. I felt the exhaustion and it also dawned to me, I wouldn't want to become primary source of gossips among my immediate surroundings. But the truth is, all I wanted last Friday was the company of a friend willing to listen. A little blessing came, my closest cousins invited me last Saturday to help them attend to some errands. This was a good way to divert my attention.  We ended the day by having a great dinner. I was more than thankful for the few hours that made me forget my struggle.

Despite all the sources of unhappiness, there were a few things that changed the outlook of the past week.

Because my Dad drove me to the train station last week, I was able to capture photos of the two places that interest me. Give me more time, I will explore these places and blog about it. I'm not sure if Sanse's Garden (on the first photo) is a restaurant, events place or a business engaged in selling ornamental plants. I have yet to try Roadside Bar and Grill which I believe is more popular for drinking sessions with friends on those Fridays and weekends.

On Saturday afternoon, I accompanied my cousin to her seamstress. It was nice to be surrounded with all those beautiful pieces of creations. :) We later headed to Lilac St. (the famous food hub in my hometown, Marikina) for early dinner. I was able to discover a new favorite burger place. Cheddar Burst Burgers is another place to love. 

The eating marathon continues, my favorite meal from Taco Bell, corn dog from 7-Eleven, and unlimited iced tea drinks from Cheddar Burst Burgers.

To cap off Saturday, me and my cousins checked out Empire Fashion Cafe. First of its kind in Marikina, it combines a boutique and coffee shop in one space. They have affordable clothes, shoes, accessories, Ikea items and cosmetics. I will write more about the place on my next post. :) 

How I wish I could say that I'm coping with this new set of struggle. The truth is, I'm all wounded. No matter how  much I convince myself, I have to admit defeat at this stage. I'm deeply hurt. I never imagined this to happen. I'm holding to the little glimmer of hope that maybe, the Big Boss above has reasons. Maybe this happened because He is preparing something better for me. Maybe. Maybe. While everything remains uncertain now, I'm holding on the littlest chance of that maybe... in His own perfect time...

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Beautiful Sunday # 184 - Surprises

Years ago, worklife is relaxing at this stage. Teaching is over and more often than not, I'm savoring my quiet time at home because I decided to use my leave credits. But because of the little adjustment in the school's academic calendar, I still reported for work to the last week of October. I was hoping to schedule a leave last Friday. Unfortunately, some teaching related tasks needed to be prioritized. It was finals week while a major event at the workplace happened. The school's basketball team made it to the championship. There were days when I work in the morning and spend the entire afternoon to watch and support the team. In God's perfect timing as they say, prayers were answered. The most awaited championship ring was regained after 10 years. :)

There were a lot of stories behind this championship. One of my personal experience is when an alumni treated everyone seated in our row for pizza. On the way back to the school for the championship party, I had my own heartwarming experience as well. We happened to pass by the bus of the rival school. The students on both buses rendered friendly gestures to each. other. It was far more than the usual rough and provoking scenes I encounter before every game. Prior to the last game, I had my own share of being provoked. In the toilet area for instance, I encountered a lady from the rival school who intentionally bumped her leather bag against me. Years ago, while having our meal after the game, a group of friends from the rival school were throwing us bad words. I never gave in to any of them although social media is tempting me to do so. Hahaha But really, my overweight self, growing bills to pay and quarter life crisis have exhausted all my energy. I have no more space left to accommodate those cat-fights. Hahahaha 

The celebration continued after with the most awaited bonfire

Everyone is still on a high at the workplace. While me? I'm all tired, sleepy and can't wait for the weekend. Hahaha Before the week ended, I was surprised to receive postcards from Marieken. Thank you Marieken, the past weeks would always mean receiving my weekly dose of postcards. I love it!

Picture perfect, deserves to be framed! - I love Amsterdam and give me more years and freelance works to fatten my bank account, I will surely visit the Netherlands.

My first Christmas card came all the way from the Netherlands. Thanks again Marieken!

One of my favorite roads in Marikina - Thankful that other schools are having their semestral break already. Lesser traffic both on the roads and the train :)

Lanzones! - Almost finished the entire plate before a decent photo was taken 

In the afternoon, my family will head to the cemetery for All Souls Day. There will surely be another mini reunion. Before we part ways, I hope we will have another great dinner again. :)