EVERYDAY: Our Wedding (Bride: The Pre-Wedding)


November 24, 2019, the most magical day of my life. ❤

We drove up to Tagaytay a day before our wedding so we can get all settled before our big day. Our family stayed in Abagatan Ti Manila. I stayed in the Heritage Room while my family were in different deluxe rooms. We actually had lunch with my relatives and had dinner with my immediate family. I even had time to do some girl talk with some of my entourage who were staying in the same hotel.

It was a perfect, sunny morning. My day started at 5:00 in the morning. My coordinator and I agreed to meet at 6:00 am so we can still do the turnover for an hour. My Hair & Make-Up team will be arriving at 7:00.

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My HMUA Team, led by Elaine Celestino arrived at 6:00 but stayed in the parking. Elaine, together with her assistant did mine, my maid of honor, the groom’s mother and our flower girl. The white robe I’m wearing while I’m doing my make-up is a gift from my cousin. Thank you, Maves!

TIP: Play your favorite songs in the background. That will help lighten everyone’s mood! Since I’m a 90s baby, I was playing RNB 90s and singing to the tunes of Shawty it’s your Booty, Buy you a drank, Confessions, Mad, My Boo, So sick, Miss Independent and the likes.

This, my final look for the church ceremony. ❤ This time, I’m wearing the dress I designed from scratch, made a reality by Embellish Dress Shop.

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My beautiful bouquet was prepared by Dangwa Florist. I wanted an all white roses. At first, I wanted a cascading bouquet but when I tried carrying one, it was too heavy for me. I changed it back to round ones. Also, check my Champagne colored heels.

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Some of our wedding details: an All White wedding invitation made by Paper Thread Studio with an illustration of us from our engagement shoot. ❤ Our rings were made by Marry Me and obviously, my perfume known to be Janna’s scent – Gucci.

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The kind of gown all small girls dream of. The Wedding Gown of my dreams. ❤ It’s an A-Line in Gazar – Mikado Material, a deep V, neck line with sheer V deep armholes, a deep V Back with floral appliques on the side and some pearls to cover my chest. The amazing thing? it has pockets! P.S. I didn’t want any diamonds or lace or sheer or sequins.

The Gown of my dreams was created by Rose Lagdameo, the official couturier of Pronovias, Mi Sueno here in the Philippines.

Uhuh! Isn’t it perfect? ❤

I swear I wasn’t feeling any nervousness. I was at peace and calm and you know, just following wherever they needed me to be. And here comes our Photographer and Videographer, Timoteo Photo and Stories by Supermac, asking me to read my vows.

Two months before our wedding, there was a memo released for all the churches in Tagaytay – we are no longer allowed to read our personal vows during the ceremony. :/ I’d like to share my Wedding Vows on a separate post.

Check out the details of my white robe from Embellish Dress Shop. ❤

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Before the shenanigans with my bridemaids, here I am being followed by a couple of photographers, shooting everywhere, all around the property of Abagatan!

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My hair was carefully done by David’s Salon! Check out my beautiful highlights! ❤ Let me take this time to introduce my bride squad: I have 2 Maids of Honor, my older sister, Jillian and my best friend, Alex. My Bridesmaids are Bianca and Atria, my 2 best friends from High School and Nicole and Jaja from my college group. My Secondary Sponsors are Katrina, one of my HS Bestfriends, my cousin Ivy and groom’s cousin, Yza.

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We got our bride squad champagne robes from SMGM Bridal Shop. It’s nice right? It’s the perfect classy color and size is right.

TIP: Get your closest friends! It will be more fun and it will be an opportunity for them to get to know each other and become close friends as well.

As our gift to our bride squad, my Maid of Honor Alex gave me 9 sets of Make-Up from Barebug, her business. And as our gift for her, I purchased a wallet from Mango.

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The beautiful gown of our bride squad was created by Christlee Marcelino. As part of our theme, our Bridesmaids wore a dark emerald gown, our Secondary Sponsors wore a sage green and our Maids of Honor wore a champagne gown. All of their gowns are plain, mikado gown with a high slit infront. ❤

Before we head to the church, we each had a toast of a fruity wine! And zero ounce of doubt or nervousness, STILL!

Of course we have to have a series of shots withe most important group – my family! A couple with my mom, my dad, my siblings and one with that yaya I grew up with.

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I love my family and I’m glad we are complete on this beautiful day. ❤

About to see the love of my life, say I do and promise to stay committed for the rest of our lives. I can’t wait. ❤ Look how happy I am!

BOOK: Take the Lead by Betsy Myers


GOODREADS: “Why is it that some people challenge us and motivate us to rise to our best abilities, while others seem to drain our energy and spirit? What is that particular quality certain people have that causes those around them to engage fully and feel connected?”

SEVEN CORE IDEAS

  • We all skin our knees. What count is how we pick ourselves up, learn from our mistakes and move forward.

  1. AUTHENTICITY
  • People who are authentic don’t feel the need to exaggerate their story to make themselves look better, or treat others poorly so they come out in top. People begin to be leaders at that moment when decide for themselves how to be.
  • Genuine leadership is what emerges when we are fully and freely ourselves.
  • People trust us when we are genuine – when we show up, not as who we think we should be, not who our parents and teachers, colleagues and bosses say we should be, but as who we really are.
  • We are each born with our own internal compass, an innate sense that tells us if the direction we’re heading feels right. The most important feedback is that which comes from ourselves. Part of living an authentic life is learning to trust that internal compass.
  • It is the duty of a leader to ensure that people are in the right seats – and on the right bus.
  • We continue discovering new things about ourselves throughout our lives and careers, and sometimes a situation that felt right for us at one point starts feeling like it’s no longer a fit. Sometimes we need to be open to a change in plans and give ourselves permission to change direction.
  • We each have the power to determine or change our roles in both our personal and professional lives.

2. CONNECTION

  • Sometimes when people are unhappy at work, it’s because they are in an environment where they don’t feel connected. They don’t feel they belong there, that their contribution matters or that they are valued as part of the team.
  • No matter how good you are at your work, if you don’t have good relationships with your colleagues, it may not have the impact or support it should.
  • Conversations are opportunities to learn more about the person, share something about yourselves and discover things we may have in common.
  • A shared sense of story brings about a shared sense of purpose, and it is from there that the force for a true movement is born.
  • We walk through so many other people’s lives and often don’t know the lasting impact we have.
  • The two keys for genuine conversation are the curiosity to ask questions about the other person and the generosity to share something about yourself.
  • Look for opportunities for people to meet informally, share personal stories and build relationships.

3. RESPECT

  • Making the effort to notice – opening your eyes and seeing the people around you, taking the time to talk with them and become conscious of what’s going on in their lives.
  • People want to feel that their voice matters. Effective leadership takes the time and care to listen and make sure people feel truly heard.
  • Respect means being willing to listen and let others have their voice, even when it might be inconvenient, difficult or painful to do so. This doesn’t mean we have to agree with another’s decision. It simply means being willing to listen & appreciate people for their unique perspective.
  • You have to listen and gain their trust before you can even have a conversation. You can disagree honorably once you have trust in the relationship.
  • Sometimes sharing an observation or a bit of feedback can be tremendously helpful.
  • The way we communicate and frame an issue and our awareness of the timing and context, can make all the difference in how we are heard and what results we get.
  • It’s not about ego and it’s not about who had the idea in the first place, it’s thinking strategically about who is the best person to get the job done.

4. CLARITY

  • Every organization must have a larger purpose and part of any leader’s success is the ability to communicate that purpose with vivid clarity so that it can be passed from person to person within the organization.
  • As important as what we did were the things we chose not to do
  • Less is more: instead of trying to do a bunch of different things everyday, do one thing at a time.
  • What makes a leader effective is the ability to help people become clear about which tasks are essential to the goal.
  • Informed people feel secure. People will pull together, if they all understand what’s going on and what’s at stake.
  • The key to developing people is to catch them doing something right.
  • It is easy to make assumptions about other people’s expectations, about what matters to them or what makes them feel appreciated. The only reliable way to gain that clarity is to ask.
  • Leadership is not about having all the answers, it is about asking the questions. The clarity comes from listening to the people in the field.

5. COLLABORATION

  • Effective leadership is about inclusion. People feel they are integral part of the larger process.
  • An effective leader then clearly communicates that decision is out to the troops, including what the decision is, why it was made, and what it means to the organization and to each individual involved.
  • A key ingredient in creating true collaboration is becoming aware of our assumptions and learning to challenge them.
  • If you aren’t willing to hear another point of view, how do you grow?

6. LEARNING

  • My curiosity fueled my life long learning.
  • The capacity to engage others – which is all about listening. Second, hard work and discipline and determination to keep at it and keep showing up.
  • Leaders learn is to get outside the bubble of their own experience or comfort zone and discover what is happening in the lives of people around them.
  • Effective leaders believe that their people have valuable perspective, insights and information.
  • Every leader should be willing to sit down with his team and ask them, what are we doing right? what are we doing wrong? what behaviors need to change?

7. COURAGE

  • Leaders are not necessarily fearless, but they are people who have learned how to confront and push through their fears.
  • Courage is about pushing through our fears.
  • We gain strength, and courage and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face. We must do that which we think we cannot.
  • It is when we push through our fear t stretch and grow that we gain confidence.
  • The greatest act of courage is to follow your heart and do the right thing even if it isn’t popular.
  • Sometimes you have to make decisions not everyone is going to be comfortable with. You have to focus on what you are trying to accomplish, with as much respect and care as you can for everyone involve. But you can’t let that stop you from what needs to be done. Leadership takes courage – but courage without being reckless.
  • Courage is a matter of speaking up and giving voice to an uncomfortable truth.
  • Often, once you summon the courage to take this step, it turns out to open up wonderful new possibilities that otherwise might have remained closed or hidden.

LEARN: Sharon Chuter (Founder of Uoma)


I’d really like to use my time wisely. Everyday, I waste about 2 hours waiting for my mom to pick me up from work and just scrolling my way through my social media. For the past week, I’ve been walking for a good 30 minutes to get to my husband’s office — and all this is are wasted time. So I thought of PODCASTS! – something I can listen to while I walk instead of music!

And I researched and researched on something that I can listen to and learn from. There, I stumbled upon Who What Wear. It’s a podcasts that invites successful women who’ve made an impact.

Anyway, SHARON! I learned so much during the 50 minute interview. She was so inspiring and so drawn by the impact she envisioned.

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  • “It’s easy to drop a million shades of foundation, but we wanted to come in and drop some truth. You can have a wide range of products, but do you understand the person behind the foundation?”
  • “I have a responsibility to be firm and strong, to make sure that the next woman who comes after me doesn’t feel left out of the conversation. It’s tough, but I don’t let it discourage me.”
  • “We shouldn’t ignore what makes us different for the sake of looking cool.”
  • We are trying to redefine inclusivity. Being inclusive is about being true to yourself and respecting what’s different about others — not about shoving your hands in their pockets.”
  • ”We are first and foremost a tribe of misfits and dreamers, and beauty is what comes next. ”
  • “Every business has an obligation to be in touch with the time that you’re living in and contribute to making the world better as you make money. And if you can’t do that, then you have to challenge why you exist.”
  • ”Learn from the ground up”
  • Pepsi: They think I’m too pretty for the job.
  • I learned how men see themselves.
  • We should not be so afraid of rejection. Women are crippled with rejection.
  • How does beauty have anything to do with size?
  • Raise capital early.
  • Start with your purpose. Your north should be what you want in life. Find your north that will guide you in everything that you do in life.
  • Trust the process. The best gift you can give yourself is to love yourself. If you don’t love yourself, you can’t operate at your best.

A woman of color, a woman from nigeria started this whole journey at a very young age. She jumped from one industry to another, one country to another. Her gut, courage and vision is inspiring. ❤

 

 

 

BOOK: Regretting you by Colleen Hoover


Goodreads: Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.Morgan is determined to prevent her daughter from making the same mistakes she did. By getting pregnant and married way too young, Morgan put her own dreams on hold. Clara doesn’t want to follow in her mother’s footsteps. Her predictable mother doesn’t have a spontaneous bone in her body.
The only person who can bring peace to the household is Chris—Morgan’s husband, Clara’s father, and the family anchor. But that peace is shattered when Chris is involved in a tragic and questionable accident. Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see.

I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of reading Coho books. ❤ ever since I saw her post about working on this book, I’ve been reeling to get my hands on this!

The story of Morgan and Clara blends together so well. Two different individuals with two different personalities going through the same loss paired with confusion and lots of heartache. It’s like Coho gave us all three books in one. You’ll see a grieving wife and a sister who’s experiencing the worst betrayal but continues to fall in love and learns to put down her walls. You’ll see a teenage girl who’s grieving for her hero yet finds out one of the most painful secrets. You’ll see how the relationship of a mother and her daughter grows through life experiences.

”Everyone around me seems to have a purpose, yet I feel like I’ve reached the age of thirty four and have absolutely no life outside of Clara and Chris”. From this book, I think I appreciated my mother better. Morgan’s pent up feelings and issues of self doubt felt so painfully real. You’ll see how much mothers sacrifice for their children, putting their dreams and life to a pause or to a complete stop. I wonder if all mothers go through that? feeling like you have no life other than being a mother to your children and a wife to your husband. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong. But like Morgan, that’s one of my fears too. Coho illustrated it so well. I wish every mother knows how important they are and how respected, appreciated and loved they are.

It makes me wonder how a seemingly good husband seems to be perfect one time and hurts you so much without knowing it? How can anyone be perfectly good liars in front of your face? I hate that I liked Chris at first. ‘What if your future wife doesn’t like it?’ ‘ You won’t’.

I love the adoring banter between Miller and his gramps. Gramps is pretty witty himself. ❤ And the way Jonah freakin saves all the watermelon jolly ranchers ever since they were kids? GAH. And the way Miller has been stalking Clara for three years!! I want a promposal, just like that. ❤ ‘One of these days, that girl is gonna notice me. You just wait’. 😀 Plus miller named his truck Nora!!! The character Clara played in the theater. ❤

  • I wonder if humans are the only living creatures who feel hollow inside.
  • Sometimes when we’re alone, he looks at me in a way that makes me feel empty when he looks away.
  • His words jar me.
  • I love it when he smiles, even after all these years of marriage.
  • Sometimes you have to walk away from the fight in order to win it.
  • I guess that happends when you become a mother, though. Your focus is no longer on yourself.
  • Heartbreak builds character.
  • For some reason, sadness in music eases music eases the sadness in my soul. It’s like the worse the heartache in a song is, the better I feel.
  • I’ve believed in you the moment I met you. I believe in myself now that I’ve finally left you.
  • I think it’s time I figure out who I was meant to become before I started living my life for everyone else.
  • Everything you do is epic, Clara.
  • Grown ups might not have their shit figured out nay more than we do. They just wear more convincing masks.
  • I just love you because I can’t help it, and it feels good to love you.
  • Attraction isn’t something that only happens once, with one person. It’s part of what drives humans. Our attraction to each other, to art, to food, to entertainment. Attraction is fun. So when you decide to commit to someone, you aren’t saying, ‘I promise I’ll never be attracted to anyone else’. You’re saying, ‘I promise to commit to you, despite my potential future attraction to other people’.
  • Relationships are hard for that very reason. Your body and your heart don’t stop finding the beauty and the attraction in other people simply because you’ve made a commitment to one person. If you ever find yourself in a situation where you’re drawn to someone else, it’s up to you to remove yourself from that situation before it becomes too hard to fight.

I ache, I smiled, I teared up, I hurt. One morning when I was with my colleague buying breakfast, she looked at me worried asking if I’m okay because I was tearing up, and I only said, I’m reading. ❤ This is what Colleen does to me.

THOUGHTS: Things I learned from my Ex


It’s 15 days before Heart’s Day and what better time to reflect on this. Don’t get me wrong. I’m still working on several of the points below but every person that you meet, every bond you’ve created, every memory that you treasure speaks volume and if you look at it hard enough, you’ll see that these experiences are bound to teach you something.

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  • There’s a life outside the relationship.

My friends used to tell me that when I first had a relationship, I forgot about them and that I was completely imprisoned by the relationship. It’s important to spend time with your partner but it’s also as important to spend time outside of your relationship, whether it is to set aside time for your hobby, spend a quiet time with your family, see your friends or whatever it is you like to do. Do it. Your partner is not your entire world. 

  • Learn to trust.

It may be difficult for someone who had an experience before, but your past is not your partner’s fault. If you love the person, trust that he will never hurt you intentionally just as you would not with him.

  • If you are truly important, he’ll wait.

Okay, this one. . . It’s a given. I was in High School. I was known for having the strictest parents alive. I had a school bus service in the morning and in the afternoon. Unlike the other students, I don’t get to socialize and go home whenever I want to. I can only socialize until a given time but I still had to ride with my bus. This certain suitor told me bluntly that the reason he stopped courting me was because I couldn’t get out of the house whenever he pleases. If he cares, if you’re important to him, he’ll spend time wherever you are, even if it’s just inside your house. 

  • Endings can mean a start something great.

It has to be. And that’s the only feasible explanation. God takes away a person because he has someone better for us. ❤ My marriage proves it. ❤ I am in a way, WAY better relationship now.

  • Appreciate the small things

You know how before it was taught to us that God appreciates the Php 10 from a beggar than a Php 1,000,000 from a Billionaire? It’s because the beggar gave everything he has. I was in a relationship before where my someone had to literally skip lunch and drink water from the cafeteria instead for a month to save Php 400 pesos to buy me a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts because she couldn’t save enough money to buy me cake? And honestly, it melted my heart. It’s really the small things that matter, the effort the other person gives. 

  • When you love someone, tell it to them. 

Life is short! If you feel it, tell it to them. If they don’t feel the same way, it’s okay. If they do, then great! Never miss a chance just because you fear rejection. 

From one of my most loved series and characters, ”If you love someone, you tell them. Even if you’re scared that it’s not the right thing. Even if you’re scared that it’ll cause problems. Even if you’re scared that it will burn your life to the ground, you say it, and you say it loud and you go from there”. – Mark Sloan

  • Never tolerate infidelity

Infidelity is breaking that sacred bond you have with your partner. A commitment is a commitment for a reason. I used to be in a semi-relationship with a guy that started when he had a girlfriend. He broke it off with her to be with me. But I realized, how will I be able to trust him to be completely faithful when I know for a fact what he’s capable of? Second Chances for infidelity is still a no for me. But it depends on your values in life.

  • Never pretend someone you’re not

This is pretty simple. If I pretend to obsess over football just because the guy I like loves football — Can I imagine myself pretending to watch football for the years to come? No. just be yourself. If you eat a LOT, eat a mouthful on your first date! Don’t starve yourself. Guys likes girls who are not as skinny as a skeleton! The relationship will lasts longer if you both feel comfortable with each other. 

  • Communication is key

I used to be one of those girls who would throw a tantrum out of nowhere. (I AM, rather) I have not been able to remedy this yet. HAHA. but most often than not, your significant others are not a mind reader. Sometimes, they have absolutely no idea what they did wrong so they will continue to do exactly that. For example, If I was scrolling my feed and I saw my husband liked his ex’s or his crush’s picture — I will  not mind him and I will intentionally be difficult. I won’t say anything. But, for him not to do that again, I will have to tell him how it made me feel so that he understands. (but this is me, still a work in progress though). Tell your someone how you feel. It’s better to express it than to hide it in the long run. 

  • Not one of my past is a mistake. 

People will come and go, whether it may be your partner or your friend. If a relationship failed, it may be that someone better will come along or that person or the relationship is meant to teach you something. Maybe your ex brought you back to your passion, maybe your ex helped you bloom, maybe your ex taught you to dance, maybe your ex opened you to a new world, etc. Maybe your past made you realize that everything has its reason and should be seen as an experience to learn from. 

THOUGHTS: Birthday Q&A


I have been searching on our very friendly and reliable Pinterest on what I can write about for my birthday. And I have been clicking non-stop and there’s way too many ideas there. 😛 Haha.

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One of it was answering questions by spelling out your name. Here goes:

V E N I C E D E L A C R U Z

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V – Last time I cried

January 16, 2020. Work is a sensitive issue for me. I cried because of something my mom said. She was trying to make me feel better about ‘it’ – SG

E – My Best Friend

My Mom. She may not be the usual type of best friend whom I tell every single thing to but she has the most effect in me. She may be the only person who can make me okay (about the stated issue above). She’s my rock. She’s the person that I look up to. I know every child must think that his/her parents knows a lot about everything. But truly my Mom does. She has a way for anything and everything. ❤

N – Favorite place to shop at

I’m not sure if it’s the age of E-commerce or old age, making me lazy to shop around in actual stores or if it’s my husband who I feel is impatient with me when looking around — but honestly. I cannot remember the last time I intentionally shop in the mall. I’m rambling. My answer is Zalora. ❤ Brands: Zalora, Zalora Basics and Something Borrowed

I – Have any tattoos or piercings? 

Yes, two. Just in my ears. I would love a tatt. I don’t know how I’ll handle the pain given I have a low tolerance for it. Last year, I was pitching the idea of tatt rings to my husband, he agreed. But now, he’s lying and telling me that he did not agree. GRR. So yeah. But I still have to do some research. I’d like a symbolic one with a very deep meaning behind it.

C – Who I like and why I like them

Let me just make it fair by mentioning someone public figure. I will not be able to do justice if I tell you it’s a friend of mine since you will not have an idea of who that person is. So, at the top of my head? Colleen Hoover. I’m planning to read my Nth book of Coho. and I honestly have not read any of her books that I hated. There. ❤ I love her simply because her works are not a waste of time. ❤ and definitely deserves to be on the reread list.

E – My Best Friend

My ultimate best friend and my everything all rolled into one. You know how you have best friends who you don’t talk to everyday, you have your eating buddy, movie buddy, kalokohan buddy, singing buddy and all? He is it. He’s my everything. He’s the one I tell every single thing to, he’s the one I tell all the new jokes to, he’s the one I tag in all the memes, he’s the one I forward quotes on facebook to, he’s the one I talk to in viber, messenger, text and comment section all at once. My husband and my everything. ❤

D – Hardest thing I’ve ever been through

I’d like to say that I’m one of the lucky ones who have not experienced any traumatizing death or calamity in life. For me, it’s the everyday battle of loving one’s self entirely, being content and happy.

E – My Best Friend

This is the third spot for best friends and I wouldn’t want to single out just one person when several of them deserve a spot. I’d like to mention most of my closest and consistent best friends are from High School. You know who you are. They are all so dear to me yet different altogether. (One very brand conscious and classy who laughs so loud, One who swears way too loud and punches way too much, One who doesn’t seem to have any bad attitude and loves to say truelaloo, One who remembers every single detail and advises like a licensed Psych)

L – One of my Insecurities

Easy. It all comes down to this. – Not being good enough. I didn’t pass the interview, because I’m not good enough. I didn’t get the promotion, because I’m not good enough. He has a crush on someone else, because I’m not good enough. I didn’t win, because I’m not good enough. I wasn’t chosen, because I’m not good enough. My skills is not good enough, my experiences is not good enough. I’m not good enough. I really have to work on this.

A – Why my last relationship ended

I wouldn’t say it was toxic. For me, at least. To put it bluntly, the relationship ended because that person blames the relationship for every single bad thing that’s happening in her life. Talk about Buddhism and karma.

C – Who I like and why I like them

Again, a public figure although I’m not sure if you know her. It’s Steph Claire Smith. She has the most amazing body without being bonesy, the most angelic smile and she sounds so genuine and true in her IG Videos. ❤ (P.S. Love her wedding gown)

R – Favorite Song at the moment

Best Days by Matt White is currently on replay since I used the same song in the SDE that I was editing. ❤ I’ll share it here within the week. 🙂

U – Where I want to be right now

I always want a getaway during my birthday. Unfortunately, there’s way too many things happening in the world right now – Taal’s pending explosion, Corona Virus and the like. So if you’re sincerely asking me where I want to be right now? I want to be in one the pretty Airbnbs in Bali with the floating fruit breakfast with my hubby. ❤

Z – How are you

If I’m being honest, I’m not at my best.  I feel so defeated. It’s been another year and I feel like I have not accomplished anything in one year. But physically, I have no ailments so I’m still grateful. 😀

THOUGHTS: Run at your own pace


We are not required to explain everything that’s happening in our lives to other people.

failed marriage, not passing the board exam, leaving a toxic relationship, finishing school at age 25, not having savings at 30.

We live this life differently. Run at your own speed

Charity Delmo

Such a helpful reminder. ❤

 

 

BOOK: It ends with us by Colleen Hoover


GOODREADS: Sometimes it is the one who loves you who hurts you the most.

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true. As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan — her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

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When you love a person, you believe them. You believe their promises, their lies and just about anything. You believe in the goodness of their hearts. You believe in their intentions and you believe and hope that they will change.

As the story progressed, I am in awe of lily’s character. As vulnerable as she is, it took a lot of strength to take control of her life, even if there was a child on the way.

  • I feel like everyone fakes who they really are, when deep down we’re all equal amounts of screwed up. Some of us are just better at hiding it than others.
  • NAKED TRUTHS
  • There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.
  • You’re already my favorite person but now you’re making it really unfair to all the other humans because no one will ever be able to catch up to you.
  •  I like you. Everything about you. Being inside you, being outside of you, being near you. I like it all.
  • All humans make mistakes. What determines a person’s character aren’t mistakes we make, it’s how we take those mistakes and turn them into lessons rather than excuses.
  • Life is a funny thing. We only get so many years to live it, so we have to do everything we can to make sure those years are full as they can be. We shouldn’t waster time on things that might happen someday or maybe even never.
  • Maybe love isn’t something that comes full circle. It just ebbs and flows, in and out, just like the people in our lives.
  • Just because we didn’t end up on the same wave, doesn’t mean we aren’t still a part of the same ocean.
  • In the future, if by some miracle you ever find yourself in the position to fall in love again, fall in love with me.
  • Just because someone hurts you doesn’t mean you can simply stop loving them. It’s not the person’s actions that hurt the most. It’s the love. If there was no love attached to the action, the pain would be a little easier to bear.
  • She left someone she loved so that her daughters would never think that kind of relationship is okay.

My heart simply breaks for both Lily and Ryle. :/  How can you ever willingly give up someone you love and choose yourself? I think Domestic Violence happens to a lot of relationships, not just to women. But only a few brave souls can have the courage and strength to do what lily chose.

I think it makes it even harder if you love the person. It is never easy to just leave and end things. Coho taught me that right choice will always be the hardest ones. I hope I never get the chance to ever be in the same position.

PONDER: All of us


We all have shit days every now and then. All of us. No matter how perfect we aspire to be, and no matter how many tings we promised ourselves we would do, sometimes all the things we wanted to achieve just can’t happen in one day and that is perfectly okay. – momentary happiness

 

PONDER: Be your own Hero


These are not my words. It’s something I want to share and keep here so I can read it whenever I need to be reminded.

Don’t stop being who you want to be – who you’re willing to become – just because people have a painting of who you’re mapped out to be. Focus on yourself. Challenge yourself. Become the person you know you can become. Don’t let anyone make decisions for how you’re going to be or where you’ll end up. It’s not their story you’re writing. It’s yours. Let change be your own. Let who you are be a cause for the kind of change you want in your life. You have the ability to make your own choices and the capability to lead your own life.

Be your own change. Be your own savior. And most of all, Be your own Hero.

  • -Braverhope

PONDER


The young may not like this but here is a truth to consider:
Sometimes it takes 10 years to get that 1 year that will change your life.
 I spoke and trained for 12 years doing talks pro-bono until that crucial year the opportunity came and turned professional.
Many want to short cut the process wanting instant success. Doesn’t work well.
There is always a process before you can get to achieve long term success. And here is the catch. The process continues. 
— Francis Kong
ROAD

THOUGHTS: ’18 Year End Post


In 2018, I turned 27. 10 years ago, I thought by this age, I already have a very successful restaurant or that I’m already at the top of the corporate ladder and won an YMMA award. There are things I’ve dreamed of owning at this age such as my own house, my own car, a very fat bank account which can last a luxurious life for 5 years.

In 2018, I traveled to one of my bucket list places; New York. It’s surreal to look back on it. It’s only my second time in US and though I would have wanted to explore new countries, I am grateful to tick this one off. 😀 I also got to spend time with relatives. I know my mom has been itching to visit her siblings and I know how happy she was to spend time with them.  We were also introduced to one of our cousins there: Brandon.

In 2018, Our family got bigger. My sister finally gave birth to Elle, my goddaughter and she is beautiful and special. I cannot believe how much my sister grew and matured just by being a mother. It’s exciting to see her blossom like that for her child. I finally met Kyle, the son of one of my closest cousin. My cousin Marc also found out that he will be having a kid. ❤ My cousin Derek also was blessed with a new Rodriguez Baby Girl. Lastly, my cousin Alexis also welcomed a baby girl Zoey.

In 2018, I found out I have lumps. I guess it’s teaching me not to ignore APEs. I found out I have 4 and 3 in my breasts and several lumps in my uterus which needs to be monitored. But thankfully, nothing that we need to worry about in the near future.

In 2018, I graduated and earned the three letters, MBA. My journey in earning the degree has been filled with tears, coffee, tons of pressure and grit. I’m glad that’s over but I’ll be missing everything about it too.

In 2018, I got engaged. I still can’t understand how I feel about it. It’s all sort of mixed emotions. I’m beyond happy and excited to start living our married life. I want to skip the wedding preparations and the wedding and jump off to living and facing everyday with the love of my life. But I feel extremely sad to be leaving my family too.  I didn’t know I would miss everything so bad. I cannot believe I will not be spending everyday with them.

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There’s a lot of things that didn’t go as I planned it to be or how I imagined it to be. But I’d like to think that this is what God has planned for me and I know that he knows what’s best, even if it’s not what I prayed for. I’d like to think that this is where I’m supposed to be.

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In 2019, I plan to save more. Not just for the wedding but I’ll try to avoid a lot of mini expenses such as going for 3in1 cofee or 711 french vanilla than Starbucks or opting to walk (cause it will do me good) or FX than booking a Grab or just simply pausing before buying anything new.

In 2019, I plan to stick to basics. In relation to saving more, I plan to only buy clothes that are basics. I’m planning to stick with White, Black, Gray, Brown and all its shades of family.

In 2019, I plan to stick to my weight goal, 97. The ideal goal for my height is 107 – 140 but since I don’t have an active lifestyle, I’d like to keep it to 97. Also, I plan to make it a habit to do a 5 minute of anything workout before taking a bath every morning.

In 2019, I plan to read more books. I’m glad I surpassed my 2018 goal of 20 books. ❤ My goal for this coming year year is to stick to 20 since I’ll be super busy. BUT, I’ll spice it up by following a reading challenge this time.

In 2019, I plan to be more grateful, appreciative and understanding. Things may not work out but I hope to see the good small things that I am blessed with.

 

I’d like to say all of my plans but it might bite me back in the ass if I promise to do something I know I’m not committed to, so I’ll stick with what I’ve written here. I have faith that this coming year will bring more blessings and positive changes and transformation in my life and the people that I love.

Regardless of what happened this year, it’s been pretty amazing and I’m looking forward to 2019 with an open heart and mind. And here’s to praying for a better version of Janna. ❤

P.S. I look awful when blowing something. I just realized. 😀

THOUGHTS: FIND A GUY


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  1. Find a Guy who has the urgency to tell you everything
  2. Find a Guy who can’t sleep without you by his side.
  3. Find a Guy who will grab your waist and spin you to dance with no music.
  4. Find a Guy who is proud of you and ready to tell the world who you are to him.
  5. Find a Guy who introduces you to his family, friends and colleagues.
  6. Find a Guy who starts his morning by making you smile.
  7. Find a Guy who never forgets to say Good Morning or Good Night
  8. Find a Guy who makes you feel attractive.
  9. Find a Guy who makes you feel like you’re the only woman in the room.
  10. Find a Guy who makes sure you feel loved and respected.
  11. Find a Guy who will go to any lengths to take that IG-worthy photo of you.
  12. Find a Guy who makes you laugh so hard your tummies hurt.
  13. Find a Guy who you can have impromptu videoke road trips with.
  14. Find a Guy who will take you on surprise road trips.
  15. Find a Guy who never forgets to kiss you hello and see you later.
  16. Find a Guy who still gets excited when he gets to take you out on a date.
  17. Find a Guy who plans for exciting dates without being asked.
  18. Find a Guy who you can be quietly still with.
  19. Find a Guy who you can call when you murdered someone & plans to dump them in a river.
  20. Find a Guy who listens to you.
  21. Find a Guy who pays attention and remembers the little details about you.
  22. Find a Guy who gets the flavor that you want just so he can give you his when you still want more.
  23. Find a Guy who keeps his promises.
  24. Find a Guy who actually wants to bring you home because he wants you safe.
  25. Find a Guy who finds you hot and beautiful at the same time.
  26. Find a Guy who stimulates you intellectually.
  27. Find a Guy who knows you’re worthy of anything.
  28. Find a Guy who finds time to give you handwritten letters.
  29. Find a Guy who hugs you from the back just because he wants to be near you.
  30. Find a Guy who still tells you you’re beautiful and you can see he’s sincere not because it’s a sweet gesture.
  31. Find a Guy who kisses you mid sentence because it’s painful for him not to kiss you at that moment.
  32. Find a Guy who respects your opinion even if it contradicts his.
  33. Find a Guy who will discuss politics and religion with you.
  34. Find a Guy who thinks you’re attractive when you tell him about the book you’re reading.
  35. Find a Guy who puts perfect guys in novels to shame.
  36. Find a Guy who is in pain when he sees you crying.
  37. Find a Guy who kisses you hungrily because he thinks you’re hot and beautiful and extremely attractive.
  38. Find a guy who doesn’t lie.
  39. Find a guy who tries not to disappoint you.
  40. Find a guy who listens to what you want and what you don’t want.
  41. Find a guy who says sorry and doesn’t repeat his mistakes cause he knows how valuable your forgiveness is.
  42. Find a guy is more than happy to bring you along on barkada nights.
  43. Find a guy who willingly updates you his whereabouts, someone who doesn’t need to be asked.
  44. Find a guy who’s not afraid to try new things.
  45. Find a guy who can protect you, not the other way around, someone you feel safe with.

 

If more than half is missing, stay single. It will do you good.

THOUGHTS: 90s Computer Games


​Do you remember the times when all the games can only be played in your desktop computer? when you had to wait for dismissal time and go home just to play? Do you remember the time when you would patiently write all the pass codes for a certain level so you can go back to it when you miss a turn and die during the game? 
2 weeks ago, we were cleaning our desktop computer at our house and I managed to dig a bag full of CDs.
I do! and I have several favorites. ❤   
​1. CHIP CHALLENGE
Wikipedia: Chip’s Challenge consists of a series of 148 two-dimensional levels which features the player character, Nerdy Chip, often called just Chip, and various game elements such as computer chips, buttons, locked doors, water and lethal monsters. Chip should be able to collect enough chips to open the chip socket at the end of each level, get to the exit and move on to the next level. 
 
This is my MOST FAVORITE one because this is the most challenging. I can still remember all of my siblings are watching when one is playing to watch the tactics needed to move to the next level, to anticipate what the new challenges are. I love that there’s an element of ice, fire, moving objects, monsters that hinder you. My favorite level? I forgot the numeric one but it’s the level where there were no walls but chips to collect endlessly but there’s a monster running after you. 
 
2. FREDDI FISH
 
WikipediaFreddi Fish is a yellow fish who takes on detective investigations throughout the series. Her best friend, a green fish named Luther, goes with her on all her adventures. The series sold more than 2.5 million copies and won over 75 awards of excellence.
 
This is definitely my second favorite since it goes on an adventure. He meets several people who will give him clues and gives him jobs to accomplish. Plus, who doesn’t want to see what goes on under the sea? 
 
3. PUTT PUTT JOINS THE PARADE
 
Wikipedia: When Putt-Putt hears on his radio that there a pet parade is coming to Cartown, he really wants to be in it. Before he can enter the parade, he must find a pet and a balloon, and get cleaned at the car wash. After that, Putt-Putt goes to talk to Smokey the Fire Engine to borrow his lawn mower, so he could make some money to use the car wash. He goes to Green Street, Red Street, and Blue Street to help people by mowing lawns and delivering groceries for Mr. Baldini to earn money for the car wash. Putt-Putt then helps a car, Mrs. Airbag that lost her baby in the movies, and goes in a cave and finds a puppy that he names Pep. After that, he is the leader of the parade and everyone has a happy day!
Another adventure game! I think I like games with stories. ❤ I guess my favorite part was saving the puppy and saving the baby car from the movies. 
 
4. FATTY BEAR’S ACTIVITY PACK
 
Classicreload: It contains 15 different games and activities for kids 3-8. Some games are traditional such as tic-tac-toe, hangman, word search, checkers and remember. 
 
I love this activity & game pack because there’s so much to do! Plus, you actually get to play against the computer in games such as checkers or tic tac toe. LOVE all of the games. 
 
 
It’s surreal to remember the games that we used to play and actually had fun with. If there are updated version of the game in the App Store, let me know! 😀 What are your favorite games when you were a kid? 

THOUGHTS: My Favorite Perfumes


First, I’m no perfume expert. I’m just spilling my secret here of how I maintain to be irresistible. HAHAHA. Kidding aside, the following scents are just my all time favorite and my go-to perfumes. And, because I’m in no field of pretending to be one, I gathered their description from different websites selling them. 

Second, I will not be listing the prices here since I don’t know most of them. 

1. ENVY ME by Gucci

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Envy me was created for the woman who demands attention. This dazzling blend of sensual peony, jasmine, and pink pepper is melded with notes of sweet lychee and effervescent pomegranate and pineapple, and smoothed with soothing musk, white tea, and warm woods, is guaranteed to make her the object of desire.

Notes:
Peony, Jasmine, Pink Pepper, Lychee, Pomegranate, Pineapple, Pink Musk, Seringa, White Tea, Sandalwood, Teakwood, Sensual Musk.
Style:
Daring. Sexy. Arresting.

2. ESPECIALLY / ELIXIR by Escada

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Escada brings yet another delicious, luxurious and purely feminine fragrance in the form of Especially Escada. This fragrance opens with a blend of exotic notes of ambrette seeds and a sparkling top note of pear. 

3. ROSE by Solinotes

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a vibrant perfume packed with full-bodied, mischievous notes. An interpretation embellishing the modernity and freshness of Rose, and unveiling a romantic heart of sweet rose and magnolia.

4. ADDICT by Dior

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Flirty and optimistic, Dior Addict Eau Fraîche begins with a sparkling, alluring burst of fresh femininity. Crisp, clean notes of bergamot, grapefruit, and orange mingle with fresh, floral notes and ripe fruits, soothed with warm sandalwood and white musk. 

Notes:
Bergamot, Grapefruit, Orange, Freesia, Lily of the Valley, Lotus Flower, Pineapple, Watermelon, Grenadine, Sandalwood, White Musk. 
Style:
Flirty. Optimistic. Surprising.

5. BE DELICIOUS by DKNY

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Flirty and optimistic, Dior Addict Eau Fraîche begins with a sparkling, alluring burst of fresh femininity. Crisp, clean notes of bergamot, grapefruit, and orange mingle with fresh, floral notes and ripe fruits, soothed with warm sandalwood and white musk. 

Notes:
Bergamot, Grapefruit, Orange, Freesia, Lily of the Valley, Lotus Flower, Pineapple, Watermelon, Grenadine, Sandalwood, White Musk. 
Style:
Flirty. Optimistic. Surprising.

6. ALTERNATIVES: MUSC by Solinotes or FORGET ME NOT by Zara