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Sugar, spice, and a pinch of GLAM

Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Almost..I do.

Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Aaaah finally!!! I am sorry for being MIA for a week. Being in Manila means dealing with poor service. For the past 2 weeks A and I have had our fair share of annoying stories about being taken advantage of government officials/ traffic enforcers and having no internet for a week (just because PLDT decided to do maintenance i the area FOR A WEEK!). So it has been a busy 2 weeks, I’ve always dreamed of being a hands on bride, but gaaah I never thought it would be this challenging (not that I am complaining). I am kind of getting frustrated about not documenting most of the things that has been happening since I’ve been home. I don’t know why but maybe it’s the fact that I have been so worried about being so bloated/swollen because of the sudden change of weather (from 18 degrees to 97!). My ring finger is having an allergic reaction to the hot weather that I am so afraid my rings won’t fit next week! #StoryOfMyLife. Nonetheless, I feel like we are pretty much ready to say I do…suppliers are picked out and all I need is for my guests to RSVP! Haha So as I mentioned above, I failed to document everything, so let me share some throwbacks for you that shows how my life has been like for the past 2 weeks. DSC_0898A

Greek Easter: Greek Easter was this past Sunday. We missed it this year and aaah I was dreaming about Greek food all day!

Thinking about Greek Easter reminded me of the Greek Festival last year.

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it was a Friday and luckily both A and I got the night off. So we invited this little egg tart to join us

(more…)

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Bangkok Diaries: Amphawa

09.06.14: อัมพวา

Hello, dolls! Happy Tuesday 🙂 I can’t believe that our trip to Manila is just right around the corner. I feel like we just booked our flights yesterday. Time really knows how to play with our emotions sometimes. I am starting to get anxious about my wedding, feel sad because I know I will only get to be a full time bride-to-be for less than 21 days, and happy because after 7 months I can finally be with my family again…and even more excited because it is a dream come true to have both of my families together!!!! My head is a riot so I don’t know if I even made sense. haha

I can consider my year a successful one when I get to travel. I have never missed a year to go someplace I have never been to before since I was 14, and to me that is one of the best blessings ever! To be able to find time,go somewhere,see new things,and feel free.

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So today, let me share with you the continuation of our Bangkok trip

Read my previous posts about our trip here https://riannagalvez.wordpress.com/category/thailand-2/

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As you all know, A and I are big fans of Anthony Bourdain. We use his show as our guide when we visit another city. We accomplished a lot of the restaurants that he recommended in Hong Kong, some in New York, a couple in New Jersey, and of course, we took the opportunity to go to the places he went to in Thailand. (more…)

Almost There

08.24-25.14: Of weekend getaways

Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy hump day! Aaaah what a beautiful “weekend” it has been. Usually, I would be bummed that our almost 3 day weekend is now over. But since I know that we only have 9 days left until we begin our journey to forever, I don’t think there is room for me to complain. We are getting close!!! We will be home in less than 2 weeks! Which reminds me of the time I went home for my Dad’s 50th birthday, back when it would take me more than a day to travel to the Philippines. The flight alone is already exhausting, the layover and waiting makes it even more draining so I like to have at least a whole day where in I do not have to worry about anything including packing before my loooong flight — that’s why A and I likes to schedule our trips from Baltimore after on or after Monday.

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A and I 12 hours before my flight to Manila last year..brought back a lot of memories when I left Baltimore 2 years ago to go home.

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Love waking up to this!!! (more…)

Bangkok Diaries: Wat Pho

09.06.14: วัดโพธิ์

Hello,dolls! 🙂 Happy Sunday…and happy St. Patrick’s weekend! 😉 Aaah, where do I begin? This is probably the most mind-boggling weekend ever. I don’t think I can finish my sentences without sighing multiple times. I am over-beating myself with a big decision I have to make soon. Two great opportunities are in front of me and I can only choose one (WHY!!!!!!). Two great opportunities that makes me want to split myself into two so I can do both. As I said to my post on Facebook, faith can really turn dreams to reality. I know that I am being blessed with this situation because of the I have in Him. I remember praying ever night to be someone…to be at a place where I can be great. I also dreamed of success at a young age, so I prayed for it. All these He made possible. I know that whatever I choose, I will be more than okay. Because I have Him.

Today I want to clear my mind, and it’s badly needed because I just felt like a zombie today. Headache and body pain after my 12 hour shift is not a good weekend mix. First thing on my list today — workout! One of the things that I find effective to de-stress myself is working out, and plus points cause I get to stay fit (and burn all the junk I have eaten for the week). So I went to the gym first thing in the morning, I find it more efficient for me also when I exercise in the morning before I do everything I have to do for the day so I won’t have an excuse later on that I am already beat up or whatnot. Another thing that de-stresses me is packing.I love packing! The thought of going to another place excites me. I have mustered up packing a suitcase in less than an hour,and making sure everything is secured during the travel. After trying to figure out what to eat for “brunch”,which ended up to a cup of tea and a bagel, I moved on to packing for our weekend trip and 1 of the 6 suitcases that we are bringing to the Philippines. Shopping of course tops my list when it comes to de-stressing, so I really can’t wait for tomorrow to come because I know I will be faaar away from Baltimore…even for just a while. Lastly, something very close to my heart — blogging. Sharing my adventures here on my blog definitely keeps me sane. Knowing that I have an outlet for all my thoughts is such a great help for

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Only 15 days left until our flight to the Philippines (omg!) and A and I were thinking if we should go somewhere after the wedding. We are postponing our honeymoon until next year (just because we are planning for something amazing and we can’t get more time off from work). So anyway, we like to visit another country when in Asia. We feel like it’s another opportunity for us to get closer. But with all the things that we have to think about before our big day, I am kind of hating the fact that I have not made a step to make it happen…yet.

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Let me share with you the second part of our second day in Bangkok.

 

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A Bangkok trip is not complete without seeing the Reclining Buddha. 

Our tour is short but I made sure that this will be part of it. (more…)

Sirius Espresso

09.12.14: Great food makes a trip

Hello,dolls!!! Happy hump day 😉 Aaah I can’t believe we only have less than 3 weeks left until we officially start our wedding journey. 2 Mondays left to accomplish everything that we need to do before our departure…oh the excitement of knowing that I will have a month filled with adventures and LOVE!!! <3

Looking at photos from our trip in Asia 6 months ago pumps me up more. I can’t wait to be with my family again and eat delicious food with A!!! One of our food adventures in Manila last year, and definitely one of my favorites is our trip to Bulacan to finally try my friend Karen’s baby… Sirius Espresso.

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I am always happy to see my friends become successful. As soon as I found out that Karen opened a cafe, I wanted to hop on the next flight back home and try all the delicious things that she is whipping up.

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I do not mind driving all the way to Bulacan just to try her food! Anyway, Bulacan is not that far from us. It only took us less than minutes to get to her restaurant without traffic…awesome! (more…)

Thailand Diaries: Wat Traimit

09.06.2014: พระพุทธมหาสุวรรณปฏิมากร

Hello, dolls! Happy Friday! This week has been going pretty well for me. I am happy that I got to accomplish a lot of things this week, despite of my head being a massive riot because of the million things I am thinking about. I feel ashamed because I have TONS of personal messages, comments here on WordPress, and e-mails that I STILL have to attend to. It’s crazy!!! I feel like every time I respond to one, I receive 5 more in return. So I would like to apologize to the dolls that gave me some lovin’ for the past few weeks.

Tonight, I am going to share the first part of our second day in Bangkok. With all the things that I have in my head right now, traveling is still something that never leaves my mind. If I could freeze time and just take a short leave from the planning,work,and normalcy, I would like to travel…go somewhere with A and our families, and not think about anything. (though…duhhh. it’s going to happen next month! haha)

Before I move on, read about our first day in Bangkok here:

https://riannagalvez.wordpress.com/category/thailand-2/

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My family and I are on the same page when it comes to City tours. We are a family of foodies and shoppers, so our itinerary is mostly about food and shopping centers.

But of course, we still want to immerse ourselves and learn about Thailand so we devoted half of our day to see the best temples in Bangkok.

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Our first stop was Wat Traimit. This is where the Golden buddha is, the world’s largest solid gold statue in the world — weighing 5.5 tons. (more…)

Hello, Bangkok II

09.05.2014: First Day High

Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy Friday!! Aaah only 3 more (or maybe 4) Fridays like this and I will be embracing the joys of being a full time bride-to- be!!! For my last post for February, I am going to share with you the second installment of our Bangkok trip.

One of my goals for my second time in Bangkok was to “go hard”. A and I were teasing my sister about all the food that she has to try, being a picky eater, she would always give us this weird gross look whenever we mention a kind of street food and how spicy and funky smelling it could be. Go big or go home, became our official motto lol. Every time we are in doubt of something, even when it’s not extreme such as buying a skirt,we would say “go big or go home” haha

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So anyway, it has been about 4 years since my last trip to Thailand. 4 years is a long time, but I was surprised that mostly everything that I saw during my first trip remained the same.

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We stayed at the same hotel, so it was easier for me to remember most of the things that I did and saw before, especially how to get around.

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The location of our hotel is really convenient for all shopaholics like us. We are right in front of Central Mall, they set up night markets  outside the hotel and the mall, food carts are always there early in the morning until late night. (more…)

Summer Never Ends

08.11.2014: Welcoming Change

Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Happy hump day! I woke up today with a weird feeling about today. I’ve been telling A how we have to embrace change if we want to grow. Although it hurts to move on from some of the things that we learned to appreciate, we have to leave room for better and bigger things. So I told myself that I can’t have a weird mood all day, so I claimed that we will receive good news before the day ends, and we did!!! A and I just looked at each other with utter amazement after that phone call that we received 5 min before we left our apartment. It’s a blessing right in front of our face, and all I can say is…great things happen those who believe in Him 🙂

I love how this week started, each of us received good news and boy are we excited!!! So anyway, here’s a post that will surely help me stay warm tonight. Cause you know….thinking about summer helps me forget about the cold weather…even for just a while 😉

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aside from wearing light clothes….

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I also miss the abundance of fresh produce during summer.  (more…)

Hello, Bangkok!

BANGKOK DIARIES

09.05.2014: S̄wạs̄dī

Hello, dolls!!!! 🙂 I am very very excited to share with you our trip to Thailand. I can’t believe that it has been 5 months already…and boy do I miss it! Last year, A and I were introduced to “family trips”. After our trip to Bangkok, I don’t think I can no longer say “my family and I with A” because A is now part of the family,and vice versa. Whether it be it with our family in the Philippines, or here in the US, we are all considered as one family now. So anyway, I am very happy that I am now sharing my first Bangkok post 🙂

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To be in another country with A and our family is probably one of the best blessings that I received last year

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One of the best trips ever!!! Especially because it was for the best Dad who turned 50 last year! 🙂

We had an early flight to Bangkok. Getting 8 people to wake up early and be ready before 7Am is not easy. So after dressing up, we went straight to the airport.

No breakfast for us!!! Everyone was excited and in a hurry because we did not want to miss our flight. We were so ready to have our first meal of the day after checking in our luggage. (more…)

Daddy’s 50th

 

09.03.2014: Happy Birthday, Daddy!

Hello, dolls!! Happy almost weekend 😉 7 weeks — that’s what I have been telling myself all day. I need redemption, I need something that will make me feel stronger to where I am at now…something that will deviate the thought of change. As much as I want for time to freeze, I can’t wait to be home and get married to the love of my life!!! During the last week of January, I had this feeling that February is going to be a scary month to deal with – big opportunities and decisions are in order and sometimes I wish “yes” is not a factor for my family and I to be together.

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The main reason why I went home in September last year was my Dad’s birthday. I’ve missed missed a good number of special moments with my family already, but I can’t go on life knowing that I missed my Dad’s birthday, so I did everything to make it happen.

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We went to Spiral at Sofitel Philippine Plaza for Daddy’s birthday. It was the perfect place to celebrate is birthday, and give A the freedom to eat whatever wants. haha

His first stop? The Asian station.

Spiral is huge! I wish I was able to take more photos but A, jejekid,and I had a game plan — and that is to try everything!

(more…)

Christmas 2014

12.25.14: Merry Chirstmas

Hello, dolls! Hello, Tuesday. 3 days has passed since we welcomed February and I can already see a million posts on Facebook and Instagram about Valentine’s day (most of them are the usual highschool-ish posts about being single on Vday #ugh). So anyway, Valentine’s is something I do not really forward to every year. After being disappointed when I was still in high school…cause you know?HS Valentine’s is all about flowers and chocolates — and I am not big on receiving flowers if it’s not from my Dad so yeaaap — and oh no good Vday dates until A came in my life so yeah…Valentine’s was not in my zone for a long time. As far as I’m concerned, Valtnine’s is for my Dad and I.

So I am ALMOST done with my Holiday diary. I am pretty happy with my blogging last month because I was able to accomplish 90% of the posts that I wanted to share. This month I can finally write about our Bangkok trip which I am really excited about! 🙂

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What a beautiful sight to wake up to on Christmas morning! 🙂

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One of the 3 Christmas trees in the house. Really gorgeous and perfect because of the beach themed colors and ornaments!

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Before I officially wrap up my Christmas posts, let me share with you our lovely Christmas dinner! 🙂 (more…)

Manila Eats: September 2014

09.02.14: Anghelica’s, Borough, Black Chicken, and Mama’s Hainanese Chicken

Hello, dolls! Happy snowy Monday 😉 I can’t believe that my “weekend” is almost over again…and that in 8 and half weeks I will be home again!!! I don’t think I can hide the fact that I am pretty scared about February coming so soon. I feel like I still have tons to do… for the wedding, our life after the wedding, my sister’s future, my family taking a big step for togetherness..and you know? THE WEDDING! The past weekend was nothing but a riot and aaaah…I am just happy to finally let my thoughts out and clear my mind…even for just a little while 🙂

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When I think of home, one of the things that come to mind is Anghelica’s.

Chef Anne’s brainchild. (which makes me realize! I need to place my orders soon!)

DSC_0348AWhen A and I came home in September, I told Chef Anne I want to try all of her new creations. Having her ube leche flan cake with the family is one of the reasons why I would always come home.

Anghelica’s promote desserts with Filipino favorite ingredients and flavors or as she puts it — Anghelica’s is a tribute to Philippine sweets.

The ube leche flan cake is the killer, but there is so much more in Anghelica’s that you have to try. (more…)

Christmas Morning

12.25.14: Merry Christmas!

Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy Friday!! Aaaaah it has been a very long day and I am just so happy to be sitting on the couch, catching up on my show,blogging while looking at wedding stuff, and eating a hot delicious bowl of chicken noodle soup cooked by A. (so yeaaap I like to multitask!) Anyway, tonight I will clear my mind by sharing what our Christmas morning looked like this December.

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I was super excited to wake up on Christmas morning.

I was motivated to wake up early that day.First because of my family that I was able to talk to, and second…the presents!!!

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presents, presents, presents!

..and there were still a lot hidden behind the chairs.

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Can’t call it Christmas morning without our Christmas jammies <3DSC_0759A

It was love at first sight when I saw these PJs. I feel like it was made for me! Eiffel tower?? Yes please!

Super perfect for Christmas! I am seriously convinced that I am going to wear this again for Christmas Eve this year… unless I find something just as adorbs. (more…)

NJ Diaries: Summer 2014

07.28.14: Long Beach Island

Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Today is another snowy winter day and to warm me up, I am going to talk about summer. Summer as you all know, is the busiest season of the year. It is close to impossible to get a decent off from work. It makes me miss school and how I know I can get the whole summer off to spend with family and look forward to all our travels/getaways. A and I won’t let our summer to be just spent for work, we planned to go to the beach (even if its just once) and it happened! We were so happy that we were able to go to the beach with our family here.

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New Jersey and New York comes to mind when I think about summer here in the US.

New Jersey for food and family, New York for food.

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birds…obvs.

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Don’t you feel like January is just flying by? Usually I will be having this feeling like I do not want it to end yet, but honestly as of now I am a bit excited because I know I am just one snow day away from the warmth of spring!! (and ugh my wedding!) (more…)

Nomama Artisnal Ramen

09.01.14: My Asian Guy

Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Happy Monday!! The past week was very rewarding and blessed for the Filipinos due to the Papal Visit. Hearing stories from my family who went to see him 4 days in a row just gave me so much happiness. I feel like it was a very fruitful 4 days and I wish I could have went with them. It’s been 4 months since I’ve been home and I miss it terribly. Lucky for me, I have this blog and a gazillion photos to share so I get to reminisce about moments during my homecoming and feel like it wasn’t very long ago.

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I was very happy to welcome September 2014 in Manila. Apart from the happiness that I was feeling for being home, A arrived at 3AM in the morning, making September 1st one of the best day last year.

So what do we on A’s first day back in the Philippines? Try to fight jet lag until 7AM, take a nap, then leave for lunch. Probably not the most ideal time frame but it worked for us a couple of times. haha

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So what did we do to make a feel at home in the Philippines??5 letters—- RAMEN!

We went to Nomama Artisnal Ramen because I am on a mission…and that is to take A to all of the great ramen places in the Philippines. I did not want to exhaust A so I’ve decided to go somewhere close to us. Nomama, which is 15 minutes away from us, came to mind so we went there.

(more…)

Christmas Eve 2014

12.24.14: WISH

Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy Weekend!! We are now on day 17 of 2015, how has your year been so far? I wonder if I can ever feel that time is moving normally, like I am not chasing after it. For the past year, a lot of great things happened that kind of wish that 2014 could be longer…you know? Like…it’s too good to end.

I like how the holidays are at the end of the year. I feel like we are being rewarded for all the hard work that we did, love and kindness that we gave, and sacrifices that we made. And at the same time, be blessed with His presence and the realization that He is with us throughout the year. Cause honestly, nothing can make us feel better than the faith that we have for Him within us.

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My Christmas Eve was beautiful. We woke up in New York, talked to my family in MNL during the day, and spent the holiday with our family here in New Jersey.

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This was the second time I’ve spent Christmas away from my family. But you know what’s amazing? God blessed me with another family that I can be with..without even asking for it, He gave me A and his family. (more…)

Engagement Dinner

07.20.14: With My Italian Family

Hello, dolls!!!! Happy Friday — well it’s not officially Friday yet but ahhh I am just excited to wake up in the morning later and have lunch with the fiance cause it won’t be for another 2 and a half days until I get to spend more than an hour with him during the day. Anyway, one of my goals for my blog is to post at least 2 entries about our upcoming big day (3 months left!), finish all my holiday posts, and start February with a Bangkok post. I know I can do all these as long as I stick to blogging 3 times a week.

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I can’t believe that my year of being a fiancee is already over and that in a few months I will embrace a new role.

If there is a perfect word for 2014 for me, it would be YES.

2015 will be, I DO.

After I got engaged to A, I realized that we are not only engaged to each other, we are also engaged to our families. Last year, I really felt how blessed I am to be a part of A’s family. They give me sooo much love and happiness like we have known each other for years!

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Over the summer, A’s parents threw us an engagement dinner. Since A’s family live in New York, we did the party there.

Adorable gift bag from the Buscemi’s. (more…)

Thanksgiving 2014

11.27.14: Turkey Day

Hello, dolls!!! So something hit me last night… I realized that I should work on my Holiday posts before it gets really old. The last 2 months of the year is probably the busiest for most of us. We celebrate 5 holidays…meaning 5 days to look forward to with family (and over eating!). Thanksgiving is right around my birthday, and though I’ve only celebrated it twice, I appreciate how I know I’ll have family to celebrate my birthday with.

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Speaking of family….. it will only be less than 3 months until I get to be home again!!!!

But I’ll get back to this later haha

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 Our beautiful table on Thanksgiving.

I spent the day with my family here in Baltimore. A had to work until 8PM which made me feel bad for him because I know how much he wanted to be with his family.

So we had dinner later than everyone else in the East Coast…it’s funny cause as I was browsing my Instagram feed I saw a bunch of Thanksgiving dinner posts while we were just having our appetizer. haha (more…)

Home Run for The New Year

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR, DOLLS!!! 🙂 I know I promised that I will post an entry yesterday, but aaah the last day of 2014 was a crazy roller coaster ride that ended with so much excitement! Anyway, looking back I realized that posting an entry on the first day of the year is probably a good way to start a progressive blogging year 😉 Only 3 months until I get to be in the arms of my family again,and aaaah I can’t wait! So today, as my first blog of the year, I will look back to my memorable trip back home.

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I don’t think I can ever get used to not being with my family, especially during the holidays. A lot of people tell me that it seems like I have adjusted to my new life here already. but honestly, I still yearn for my family’s presence…every waking day.

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I left a week before A. We all know how hard it could be to ask time off from work. I am blessed that I work with people who understands my situation so they allowed me to get a month off.

It was a bittersweet departure for me. It’s always hard to leave Baltimore alone.. (more…)

December in Manila

12.2013: Memories at home

Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy Christmas Eve!!!!!!! Aaaah another year of spending the holidays away from my family, but thank God this year is not going to be sad or anything because I have A’s family with me. I sometimes feel guilty when I overlook the sad part of being away from home, I feel like I am cheating.

I miss home… I miss all our December traditions. I know it’s too much to ask, but sometimes I wish I have both.

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The food that I make at home helps me remember all the good moments that I had with my family.

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Just like this Chocolate Cupcake with Reese’s Peanut Butter Frosting that I made for my family who loves to eat desserts like me. (more…)

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