Posted in God's victory, Gratitude, Inspiration, note to self, Reading, Womanhood, Word of God

Jesus speaks, always…

From 7 November Devotion from Jesus Calling book/app

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WORSHIP ME in the beauty of holiness. All true beauty reflects some of who I AM. I am working My ways in you: the divine Artist creating loveliness within your being. My main work is to clear out debris and clutter, making room for My Spirit to take full possession. Collaborate with Me in this effort by being willing to let go of anything I choose to take away. I know what you need, and I have promised to provide all of that—abundantly!

Your sense of security must not rest in your possessions or in things going your way. I am training you to depend on Me alone, finding fulfillment in My Presence. This entails being satisfied with much or with little, accepting either as My will for the moment. Instead of grasping and controlling, you are learning to release and receive. Cultivate this receptive stance by trusting Me in every situation.

Give unto the Lord the glory due to His name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.
—Psalm 29:2 nkjv

One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.
—Psalm 27:4

But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever.
—Psalm 52:8

The Lord is our comfort. He is our assurance.

Thank you, Lord. You are the God of my life, have your way in me.

Posted in Bucketlist, Friendship, Gifts, Good gifts, Gratitude, Inspiration, Lessons Learned, note to self, South Korea, Travel

Some more Notes to self…

Yes, I’m still not over it, probably never will I… 🙂

I realized I have missed out blogging about a few more important bits which will be quite useful for me to remember for my future trips (take note, tripS 🙂) to South Korea, yes, not only to Busan, but to other parts of South Korea and probably to Japan.

I live in Manila, we don’t have spring, autumn and winter here. So if I would like to experience other seasons, the nearest that I can go to is South Korea and Japan. My first experience of spring is in Seoul in April 2011, while my first autumn experience was in Osaka & Kyoto in late November/early December of 2015. I am blessed to be able to go back to South Korea, to Busan just recently, but didn’t get to witness “autumn” colours as yet, but definitely felt the lovely autumn weather.

Spring, Seoul, 2011

Autumn, Osaka/Kyoto, 2015

It is likely that I will be going back to these countries because I love them so much for various reasons. I love the weather, the food (this alone is good enough reason for me to keep on going back), the beautiful sceneries, the courteous and disciplined people, the good quality of their products, and a whole lot more!

In every travel that we experience, we learn a thing or two, and we become a better traveler and a better person each time. The things that I learned in Europe are different from what I learned in South Korea. I have shared here some of the lessons learned during my first travel to Europe.

Today, I will be sharing some notes to self which I should remember by the time I’ll take that next trip to either Japan or South Korea.

Early November is a good time to go…

Some friends and even celebrities which I follow in Instagram went to Seoul this week and I actually wanted to go back on a whim! Their videos and photos are so beautiful, the food looks so yummy, I know they are, the weather is sooo cold, the colours are just so pretty and lovely… So I am praying and hoping to be able to go back to South Korea next year, most probably in early November, Godwillling. (The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. – Proverbs 16:9). 🙂

Bring a medium AND a small luggage

Well, I know I should always try to travel light but I’ll make an exception for these 2 countries because I honestly believe that’s it’s okay to hoard all the yummy food they have. 🙂 I wasn’t able to do this recently because I only brought my small luggage. The medium luggage will be for my grocery shopping, not for my OOTDs. My clothes and all other knickknacks should fit inside my small luggage.

When I told my friend Ina that I would be going to Busan, she requested me to buy this pack of honey butter almond, she said it’s yummy. So I bought a few packs for my family and for Ina. I didn’t try it while in Busan, had I known how good it is, I should have bought more and tried to squeeze some more inside my luggage… (I love nuts. Thank you Ina, it’s because of you that I discovered this 😍). There are other variants, which are equally yummy. I tried the mixed nuts, it’s so good too!

IMG_2734I love French Vanilla and Caramel Macchiato, so when I saw these in one of the convenience stores, I bought 1 box each, which has 8 packs inside. I should have bought more if I had more space. Now you know why it is important for me to bring a medium luggage, or maybe just 2 small luggages? Well, it depends on how long will the vacation be and how much will be my budget for food shopping. 😉 Let’s see…

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Try new drinks, both hot and cold…

As I have noted in my previous post, when in Starbucks, I should not only check out the available cards but also try their new hot and cold drinks from Day 1 of the trip so I get to try all by the end of the trip. 🙂

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Find time to check out quaint cafes (they have the cutest cafes!), other food stalls, and eat all the berries and other unfamiliar fruits as much as possible… 😉 I love berries and another thing I love about these countries is that they have the freshest fruits and veggies 🙂

Always thank and praise God, allow Him to surprise you 🙂

“give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you …” – 1 Thessalonians 5:18

I have probably said this before, but I’ll say it again, I thought 2017’s highlight would be my Europe trip, THE trip of the year, but God has His way of surprising and pampering His children in ways we couldn’t have imagined. I thank and praise God for our Busan trip as much as I praise and thank him for the Europe trip, they are both very special trips to me, cherished by my grateful, joyful heart. I give all thanks and glory to God for just blessing me with all good things. He knows I love to travel, and He delights in blessing me with wonderful experiences each time.

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Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above… – James 1:17 ESV

Posted in God's victory, Good gifts, Gratitude, Inspiration, Womanhood, Word of God

the Woman that I aspire to BEcome

I’m officially 38 as of this writing. I had celebrations more than I had wished for, which makes me feel so grateful, grateful beyond words, to God and all the lovely, generous, wonderful loved ones in my life. He gives lavishes HIS children with HIS best, and I couldn’t be happier with how things are right now. Well, my life has not become perfect, it will never be, here on earth. I guess I just become more dependent on the Lord and I learned to surrender and entrust everything to HIM because He has the best plans (Jeremiah 29:11) for my life and I definitely want that more than anything else.

And I actually feel it, exciting and wonderful things from Above are up ahead. 🙂

As I journey with the Lord, as I wait for His plans to unfold before my eyes, I am determined to know Him more deeply in a personal way through His word, following His guidance, living in His righteousness by His grace and mercy. I know I couldn’t do this on my own, I need God’s grace day by day so I can become the woman that He created me to be.

So how will I be able to know as to what kind of woman I should aspire for? In Proverbs 31:10-31, known as “An Alphabet of Womanly Excellence,” I found the kind of woman that I want to become. For me, it’s the best guide, every aspect of womanhood is there, of course we are not expected to become exactly like it, it’s the ideal woman, but to aspire for it is a good start. In my current state, I want to focus on a few verses (Proverbs 31:25-26, 30). I pray for the Lord to help me become this kind of woman (I’m so far from it) and all that He wants me to be. I memorized these verses and I recite them often so I get reminded of it.

Strength and dignity are her clothing,
    and she laughs at the time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom,
    and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. – Proverbs 31:25-26

Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. – Proverbs 31:30

In this world, there are so many #pegs, so many #goals, but they are mostly worldly. It’s hard to cope up in this fast-paced world, where everyone is exposed to luxury, beauty, materialism, convenience, where everyone dreams for what the world dictates as “best.” Life is hard as it is, it will be harder when you don’t know the Lord and who He truly is in our lives. We need a guide, and that guide, only comes from the Lord through His word.

Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path. – Psalm 119:105

I am very grateful because for every single question we have, the bible has the answer for it, for every single worry that we have, the bible has an antidote for it. The bible is what I call “the manual for life.”

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,… 2 Timothy 3:16

When things get so confusing, the word of the Lord will make it crystal clear for us. When womanhood has become so complicated, so high maintenance, I’ll just go back to these verses, they will keep me grounded and always assure me that I am right on track. Womanhood can be simple when we get to learn to see our worth through God’s unconditional, unfathomable love for us. God loves us, His children, and that’s the most important thing. We are precious in His sight, period. 🙂

Ahh, I almost forgot, remember, we are only passing through this world, eternity is soooo much better, so don’t fret, okay? 😉 For a glimpse of what’s to come, read Revelation 21.

Posted in Gifts, God's victory, Good gifts, Gratitude, Health, Inspiration, Lessons Learned, Minimalism, Travel

37, thank you…

Today is 9 September, a day before my 38th birthday 🙂

I thought of writing a few realities / things I am grateful for, so here it goes 😉

  • the God of my life
  • my faith, being saved
  • Victory – the church where I belong
  • basically everything in my life, just the reality that I am alive
  • the dreams in my heart
  • the hope that I have in Christ
  • the woman that I am now (definitely not perfect, but under God’s grace)
  • love for the Word of God – my manual for life, my comfort, my teacher, my guide
  • fulfilled dream travel to Europe this year
  • in good health, good shape and feeling strong
  • best Omma and Appa, the sister and the brother, all loved ones
  • my sisters-in-Christ, I couldn’t thank them enough.. (Hazel, Alica, Mel & Bong)
  • my lovely friends (a lot of them, all wonderful individuals, I’m beyond blessed)
  • my colleagues (all good and helpful)
  • my work in ADB, the fact that I belong in this wonderful organization
  • benefits as an ADB employee
  • my simple but comfy home sweet home
  • my cozy room
  • my oldie but trusty car
  • ongoing “A” process (hopefully will be granted by 2018)
  • upcoming Busan trip with Gill and Eia
  • being able to play squash and exercise
  • food on the table and fridge
  • lots of good food to try
  • coffee time with family & friends
  • my gadgets which make me reachable and sociable
  • technologies which make life convenient and comfortable
  • my little savings and a few investments
  • things that I own and manage to buy (clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, etc.)
  • my female inspiration – Peony Lim and Mari Jasmine
  • Korean series/movies (my guilty pleasure)
  • my crushes (Gong Ji Chul aka Gong Yoo, So Ji Sub and a whole lot more)

I’m sure I have more things to be grateful for, big and small, but for now, written above are the first things which came to mind. 😉

God, thank you so much for a (beyond) wonderful 37th year of my life. 🙂 

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I am excited for the 38th – hopeful, grateful, blessed and expectant of God’s best to come my way. 🙂

Posted in Fashion sense, Inspiration, Lessons Learned, Minimalism

#REPEATisTHEnewHIP®

I follow very few celebrities. Not that there’s something wrong with following a lot, but I know myself, I get influenced, though not quickly, I believe exposing and allowing oneself to be vulnerable and to get swayed to materialism, worldliness, etc., I am mature enough to protect myself, that’s why I usually edit the ones I follow. I only keep those who inspire me and influence me in a good way. I believe we have to be careful with what/who we surround ourselves and with what influences we take in as our own.

Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny. – Mahatma Gandhi
I started following Mari Jasmine just a couple of months ago. I just felt there’s something different about her, she’s unassumingly very pretty and brainy, she practices a healthy lifestyle, and I know I’ll learn lots of good stuff from her. #followTOgrow:)

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A couple of weeks back, she shared that she wanted “to learn to love, reuse, restyle the clothes she has instead of consuming new things all the time.” I got to admire her more because of that. And I also got into thinking that it’s something that I should follow for practical and a whole lot of reasons. On her post today, she asked what hashtag can we use to view all the clothes that we repeat. So I left a comment with this hashtag #REPEATisTHEnewHIP®.

I repeat wearing my clothes obviously, but I’m guilty in the sense that I make it a point not to wear the same clothes in between close occasions. But having this new way of thinking,  #REPEATisTHEnewHIP®, I wouldn’t care wearing the same clothes as often as I want, but of course using my little creativity for a different twist😉😛

FullSizeRender (2)#Repost @mari_jasmn (@get_repost)

Trying this thing where I wear and repost more of the same items of clothing. I’m not so comfortable with this culture of consuming new things all the time to just wear it once or twice. I feel like Instagram has definitely contributed to this phenomenon 😂 what if we made it like a styling challenge so we get maximum usage out of our clothes? Anyone keen to join me 😋

Posted in Inspiration, Lessons Learned, Peony Lim

Happiest Birthday, PL! ♥♥♥

PeonyLim-ParisPinkandRed-gif1To my dearest, Peony Lim, now Mrs. PB,

I wish you the happiest birthday ever! ü

Thank you for being the kindest, prettiest, loveliest blogger I know. 🙂

You are truly an inspiration to me. I admire you because I know you are much more than a pretty face. I admire that you are a well-rounded person and sooo good in so many things. 

Because of you, I started to cook again, I try to wrap my gifts beautifully because these are some of the things that I love/enjoy doing but set aside because of “lack of time.” You made me realize that I can do things if I really want to. I know you are much busier than I am, so if you can do a lot of things, most probably I can do it too. 🙂

I admire that you are taking care of your health by eating well, working out and being positive even when things don’t go as planned.

Thank you for your kindness, for finding time to answer emails and other requests you get from your followers.

Thank you for your openness and sharing a big part of your life which we learn a lot from – love of family, travel, cooking, baking, wellness, fashion, love of family, and a whole lot more. 😉 I am not into make-up but I really enjoy watching all your tutorials, and I learn a lot from your tips. 🙂

I wish you all the very best! May you have the happiest, loveliest small & big moments, always! 🙂 

Stay happy!

♥♥♥

Your forever follower,

Ryah from Manila

Posted in Gifts, God's victory, Good gifts, Gratitude, Inspiration, Word of God

My kind of volunteer work

In January 2016, ADB has added a leave day to our benefits, we call it “volunteer day” where a staff can do outreach work on a weekday and file it as an official leave. We can do it individually or as a group with friends or as a department.

In October 2016, the Staff Community Fund (SCF) has tapped the heads of departments to partner with them to do outreach activities as part of the SCF Funds 50 Program. This program will provide P50,000 to the department’s chosen organization to be used in their outreach activities. My boss, Chris, the General Counsel, is one of the recipients of the email from SCF regarding the program. Chris, from my point of view is someone who has such a good and big heart, has grabbed the opportunity to help. He shared the email to me and 2 more staff and asked how can we partake in the program. I learned that OGC has 3 SCF volunteers, Ms. Kori, Ms. Mavic and Val. I rejoined as an SCF volunteer and started meeting with them to plan out our activities. In one of our meetings, we were thinking of what to call our outreach, after some deep but quick thought, we came up with OGC goes O.G.C. (Outreach and Games with Children).

We sent out a few emails to OGC staff and finalized the date and activities of the volunteer day. We informed them that we needed some contribution from them to supplement the funds provided by SCF. We went door to door, knocked on the generous hearts of our friends/colleagues, within a couple of weeks we were able to gather nearly P100,000 worth of cash donations. With this budget, we were able to give loot bags full of school supplies, grocery items to 50 children, we shared snacks and lunch meals with them and we even set up a photobooth to leave them with printed memories of the event.

On 17 March, our group went to Bistekville 4, a socialized housing project of 150 units of affordable housing undertaken in joint venture with Habitat for Humanity in Quezon City. Habitat for Humanity gathered the children for the event. The program commenced with a welcome remarks by Mr. Jess Maglente, the Home Owners Association President, followed by a message from Chris.

Each volunteer randomly picked the name of his/her kid buddy with whom he/she would bond and also mingle with the rest of the group all throughout the event. The whole group was divided into 5 teams: blue, green, orange, white and yellow. We played games under the sun with the children and also did some arts and crafts. Without a doubt, the children had so much fun. But to my surprise, the volunteers, 45 of us, of which more than half were lawyers, have equally enjoyed the activities, if not, I think we had probably enjoyed more than the children. 😉

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. ― Kahlil Gibran

An opportunity like this seldom comes especially in a workplace, thanks to ADB, now we can do it regularly with our friends/colleagues. We went there with the intention of generously giving our time, attention and resources, but we all went home with a deep sense of gratitude, feeling that we received more from those children, our hearts were full seeing their bright eyes with happy smiles, and hearing their contagious laughter was music to our ears, every bit of preparation and time spent with them was all well worth it.

Along the way, let’s never forget that once we were children and that we were all playing together without distinction of skin color, society level, or where people come from. Adults need to remember to play and to be more childlike in our behavior. We’ve forgotten what that childlike experience was like. – Guy Laliberte

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Blue Team
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Green Team
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Orange Team
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White Team
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Yellow Team
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The Committee, the emcees with some of the kids

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