Heart, life, love, reflections, Soul, Uncategorized

Today, someone called me ugly

I was on my way home, just several meters away from the office. Compared to before, I probably looked more decent and dignified. I walk with confidence and an air of being street-smart now, because loved ones would tell me I looked easy to fool, that I was naive. True enough, I could be. I was. So good friends before told me too to be more assertive.

At a time when I have more faith in myself, and even believe in my own loveliness as I am and not with how society measures it, I guess there was a time to be tested.

With my tiny lunchbox in my hand and a red umbrella in the other, in a black cardigan given to me by my loving parents, I passed by my usual way; when I reached the area where there were big unkempt trees and a dirty gate, there was a group of male bystanders (erm, bysitters (?) because they were sitting on the sidewalk) in front of a small barbecue spot. You know how you put a simple grill at the sidewalk – that kind of barbecue spot.

Because I felt that something rude might happen, given our culture today of how people view women, I continued to stride on and rub my nose, as if I was nursing a cold. So that I would look discreet. So I would be unnoticed.

But I heard it.

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Soul, travel, Uncategorized

A red car through red sandstone outcrops

A red car drives through the freeway towards the red sandstone outcrops of Valley of Fire.

The Lumineers’ Cleopatra album is on for the whole trip. My friend said that she had the playlist for over a year; I said I did not mind, because I liked the band too. I find traveling more fun when there is music.

No matter how many hours a trip takes, we both liked traveling except for being caught in slow traffic.

On our way, however, to Valley of Fire one summer’s day in Las Vegas, Nevada, there was not much traffic thankfully.

Yet, when the car finally arrived at the entrance to the state park, we spotted a sign which said that there was extreme temperatures today.

When my friend checked in the morning though, it was less than a hundred degrees.

But we were already there, and it’s not every day one gets to hike in the Valley of Fire on noon-time during summer, so we rode on.

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Body, recipes, Uncategorized

My Health Journey – Recipes Part I

This post is part of my Health Journey series. You may read the first two entries here and here.

When I was younger, I used to watch a lot of cooking shows. I enjoy watching the whole process from selection of ingredients and the preparation to the cooking, plating, and of course, the tasting. I used to joke around that I’d love to be a judge in a cooking show someday, but that will remain a dream.

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Writing about Writing

You can tell a lot about a person’s growth by the difference you see in his writing. Not just in his writing but also by the manner and the topics he chronicles about.

Last night, I picked up my nine-year-old Harry Potter journal that my Mom gave to me as a pasalubong from the first time she went to visit our relatives in the States. This was after I opened and closed, opened and closed, opened and typed and saved as draft and closed, the Add a Blog Entry page here for the past couple of days. Or weeks.

I wrote on it again after my last entry dated August 2016. Six months ago. That’s the scenario in my Harry Potter journal… Sometimes, I have written five entries in a month. Sometimes, there’s a wide gap. I wrote there in my private journal, because I was feeling overwhelmed about writing online again.

I wanted to write something here about a particular topic, yet I did not know what I should write about. Should I write about my life for the past years, what’s currently happening, silent prayers, my art and process, my fears, my journey to a healthier lifestyle, a new career path? I did not know. I just missed writing terribly.

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Things that rise


Although it was a sunny day, there was wind to make up for the heat. Although we arrived when the doggie hot air balloon has already taken off probably several minutes ago, we still were able to see many of the remaining ones from the car. Although we had to wait for a while before getting to enter, I was with two very good friends whom I have always enjoyed being with ever and learning from since we were young.

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books, Uncategorized

Meet the eagle, rooster, carabao, and tarsier


2017 Reads: YOUNIQUE – Understanding Others by Understanding You by Jayson Lo

Back in college, our Editor-in-Chief Kuya Venz would share personality tests to the staff. I can’t recall if he was the one who introduced to us the Myers-Briggs Personality Test, but I do remember him teaching us about the Dominant, Supportive, Influential, and Analytical personalities.

I’m sure about the supportive and analytical terms, but for the other two, not so.

I remembered because the first time I answered something like it (on my first year as a staff writer), I was the Supportive type. Then when Kuya Venz graduated and came back after a few months to share the exam again, I changed to an Analytical type. I read somewhere before that these may change after some time, depending on the circumstances that could propel us to take on a new personality.

On the other hand, the first time I took the Myers-Briggs, I was an INFJ. That was in college, but during the time I was working already, I became an INFP. The interpretations and descriptions for these were accurate for me during those moments in my life.

I enjoy taking personality exams, because it helps me know more about myself. They serve as good references too for improving our interpersonal communication and relationships.

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Writing with a Heart


I have been writing since I was in elementary school.

My Mom and Dad would buy me books when I was a child, and my Mima – if I remember correctly – said that she would read to me sometimes when I was still in her womb. (The womb of a mother will always be a special place.)

I recall Disney books especially The Little Mermaid and Little Golden Books, with traces of crayon here and there. There is also my first paperback of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Karen Hesse’s Out of the Dust from my Nanay and Tita Marissa. Reading, in its own big part, contributed to honing my skills in writing.

Of course, seven years of taking summer journalism classes under Sir Sergio Ontuca in OCNHS with my closest friends in elementary and high school and joining the DSPC yearly helped immensely. When I read my old writings, I can say that I still had a lot to improve then. I looked up to my friends who were exceptional in their own chosen categories. Ever since, I’ve been in the school paper, even in college. This was when I learned so much, not only in writing but also in taking note of what is important in life. It was a turning point in my life, and I am thankful for all the friends I’ve met there who have taught me indispensable lessons.

Besides this, I also started blogging back in Blogspot when I was 13 years old. I recall pouring over cute themes and using them afterwards to partner the content of my blog. It’s good that I remember one URL I used back in second year of high school – I read some of my entries, and it was so embarrassing! Oh well, we all went through that phase.

And before I knew it, I have been doing this blogging thing and changed addresses and transferred platforms, while I was growing up. I am about to turn 23 this year, and I am still at it, just as other people of my generation are. I’ve been from Blogger to WordPress to Tumblr, and here I am in WordPress again. (I’m still using my Tumblr for a specific purpose though, and I have met kind-hearted and thoughtful friends there!) I cannot count how many blogs I’ve kept in the nine years that I have been doing it, but the most I’ve written are in my Tumblr. When you read them, you’ll see some of my most important moments and how much I’ve changed. It’s like a time machine.

Let’s not talk about journals too which hold more personal matters compared to blogs.


Mima gave me as a pasalubong this Harry Potter journal that I have been using for seven years already. I don’t get to write their regularly, but when I have the time and if I need to put something down on paper, I write there. The interval sometimes would be a month, three months, or nine months, and I’d just be surprised to see how much I changed based on how I wrote and what I wrote about. These days, I just keep ending my entries with silent prayers.

Other notebooks would contain little snippets, reminders, quotes that point me to Christ, and drawings. One contains heartfelt and desperately written prayers, ideas, tips and advices in art, and a plethora of other random things.


Now that I am older and the age today has so many distractions telling us to do this and do that, I need to remind myself of why I still write. Either it’s on a blog or a personal journal, I need to keep myself in line with my faith, beliefs, and values as a person. A purpose bigger than myself now has to drive my writing.

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Some Things to be Thankful for


I am thankful for the ordinary miracle in coming home safely every day after work. It is a fact that sometimes I can take for granted. For us to arrive safely to our homes with our families is in itself a big blessing.

I am thankful for the time that my Dad and I were able to spend this month. My Dad only stayed here for two weeks. I wish it could have been longer; nonetheless, I am glad. It is not about the length that you are together, rather, it is about how you spend the time that you are given with each other.

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