Sunday, January 4, 2015

It's a Wrap

It’s the 4th day of 2015 and still a holiday. While many of us are still in hiatus, I’ll take this moment to browse my FB Photo albums and to retrospect to key events last year.

Travel and Adventure

It has been a family tradition over the last couple of years to gather in a place favorable to cluster of kin from the North and those from the Southern part of Luzon. Last April, we spent the summer outing at La Virginia Resort, Batangas. Located on top of a mountain, it’s a great alternative to have an optimum view of Taal Volcano and Taal Lake while delighting in water splash and a fairly cool breeze.  A large table for food was an apparent mark of our reunion that at the end of the day every family still has lavish viands to take home. Picture taking was also rampant, as expected.
The view from the highest part of La Virginia Resort
Doña Salud Resort in Calamba, Laguna witnessed three celebrations last September. It was our first time to rent a private resort and it was relatively a good experience since the place has more than enough space to accommodate a really huge family at reasonable rate.

My cousins and pamangkins enjoying the natural water of Laguna
2014 was a remarkable year for me and my younger cousins. We had three fun fun fun Sundates last year. Attending The Feast has always been the top most priority of our Sundates. Followed by another feast, literally, where there is food in the table supplemented with stories and picture taking. Strolling and theme park adventure composed the third fraction of our hangout. We’re done with Star City, Bonifacio Global City and Ayala Triangle Gardens. And we are set to conquer more places this year including an out-of-town. Spell Level up--- ILOCOS!!!
Getting ready for ultimate adventure @ Star City

Killing time @Bonifacio High Street before going back home
My cousins watching the spectacular lights and sounds @ Ayala Triangle Gardens
In May 2014, I had my second summer getaway with my high school friends. This time, we decided to go North. With limited budget on hand, we opted to try Metrodeal’s voucher for the first time. We bought Camaya Coast day tour with round trip transfer worth P1,400.00. It was a mixture of good and bad experience but that’s another story. My friends and I had time well spent, nonetheless.
I think we were the only group who was using a real camera (yung pinapatong sa kung saan saan para kasama lahat sa picture)
Since I failed to give my goddaughter a Christmas gift last December 2013, to spend time with her was another option. At least few months before Joyous Visual Trick Arts 3D Gallery at SM North finally bid goodbye, I together with my kumare and inaanak explored the world of fascinating illusions and optical spectacles. At the end of the day, we were able to bring home a number of uncanny snapshots.
This photo is one of my favorites 
After x-years of not seeing each other, I saw some of my college Tropatits during the christening of our newest inaanak. Nothing beats the moment catching up with old friends and talking about the latest buzz. After few days, I accompanied two of them in a financial literacy seminar that hopefully can be useful to boost their hard-earned money if ever they decide to take the risk.

Before the year ends, finally, I ticked one dream destination in my bucket list – Cubao Expo. Haha! Yeah! It was a simple dream but it means a lot since my first attempt to find it over a year ago was a huge failure. Thanks to a college friend for withstanding that long walk from Kamuning to Cubao Expo. Fortunately, we still had the endurance to stride after attending a very amusing Jollibee kids birthday party.   
Cubao Expo at night. I would like come back when there is still sunlight for better appreciation.
Of course, my year wouldn’t be complete without going through the streets of Divisoria for more than x exponentially raised to the nth power mostly for business purposes. Being the sole workforce (in Manila) of my brother’s events company in Surigao, I singlehandedly carried the burden of negotiating or making tawad here and there. Hehe! Kidding aside, every visit in Divisoria entails new discoveries, it is so easy to fall in love despite the fact that I had to brave crowds, endure long walks and carry heavy loads. I received my ultimate reward when my brother and gf visited Manila – Casa Verde’s gigantic Brian’s Ribs, colossal chocolate shake Milky Way, a taste of their best sampler and a bite size of a humongous burger.
Almost everything here is BIG!!!
Financial Investment

Last year. I discovered a number of FB group tackling matters about the stock market. As an investor with high risk appetite, I made too many experiments. I was brave to test the water. In effect I was gaining and losing money at the same time. Unfortunately, the former is more extensive than profits coming in. The most common scenario: after selling a stock which I was holding for months the price of that stock would suddenly skyrocket and I couldn’t do nothing but sigh. Blame it to my impatience. Therefore, if one has a high risk tolerance he/she must supplement it with long thread of patience. Studying the market is also a key. Do not completely rely on others judgment, otherwise you might fall in a pitfall and realize that you just have been victimized by hypers, bashers, strategist or should I say wiser?. But this year, I remain positive and cautious. Plus my Chinese astrology sign say so. Hehe!

Crayola Moments

May 24, 2014, our home was enveloped with silence and mourning. Our beloved dog, Mio, whom I dearly called “bata/bebe” died of certain illness. As much as I wanted to share every bit of my agony hours before he died, I’d rather recall the good memories he left with us. As I am writing this post, I couldn’t help but be emotional. I extremely miss Mio. He was not just my pet, he was my bestfriend and my child. He was a blessing to this family.
My Mio, bebe
In the middle of this year, our grandfather suffered a severe case of arthritis due to old age. He couldn’t stand. He couldn’t walk. Sometimes, even small movement was too hard for him. We all felt bad because his target age was 120. He’s 84. Thinking about the possibility of losing him was terrifying. But God is so good. After months of therapy and finding ways to cure his illness, he is now back to his old form. I thank God for giving us more opportunities to serve him.   

2014 was probably one of the most challenging years for almost the entire family. Simple disagreements resulting to squabble day after day were just too many to count. Emotional struggles were just too difficult to handle specially when suppressed. There was even a day I wanted to move out and just breathe somewhere else where I can find the courage to pick myself up quickly. My plan to spend a night in a friend’s house, however, was hindered by someone comparably frail as me. For the first time, in the midst of emotional crisis, I felt important. But more than my inner catastrophe, a lot of unexpected turn of events just happen so abruptly that no one in the family was prepared to comprehend the situation sensibly. Emotions were too over-the-top, most of the time. We were all consumed specially our mother. Things seem better now, at least more peaceful for the time being. I gather strength through prayers. I know there is God who understands our core being. Last week, before I go to bed, I was weeping while talking to God. I asked for God’s embrace. And God answered my prayer --- I had a really good sleep. This year, one of my ultimate goals is to renew my relationship to God. I have been inconsistent in my faith. I want to return so I can feel God’s loving embrace everyday even in the midst of a storm.  

2014 is over and there is nothing I can do but look back; cherish the good memories; and pick valuable lessons from the bad experiences. 2015 has just started. I have plenty of time to write the goals I want to happen this year and I’m going to claim it. In Jesus name. Amen.

To God be the glory. 

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