Let Me Go Chopsuey on You

Chopsuey or Chop Seuy (n.) : a quick Filipino-style stir fry of vegetables and meat in thickened sauce.

In my context, as what I learned from Isabel Garcia, I’ll Chopsuey (notice, it’s a verb) my way into writing this post. Meaning, I’ll toss around different kinds of updates and ideas and whatnot since I can’t, for the life of me, make a coherent narration of what’s happening in my life as of late before I went dormant. There are a lot of things I wanted to write about but obviously, I have not sat down on it. I think, it’s gonna explode in my mind and be gone forever without shedding its light onto the pages of this little space I call mine. To prevent that from happening, I needed to take action. And just write it down. And. I’m. Gonna. Write. It. Down. Right. Now.

***

What happened to my writing adventure which is NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month)?

The reason why I was not writing much in the blog for a few weeks back in November was because I was nose deep in writing my very first novel and hoping to finish it (writers should’ve bled 50 thousand words in the month of November for their novel) as the pre-requisite to win the challenge.

Here’s my final output, I stopped writing around third week #sadface:

My unfinished novel in November.

My unfinished novel back in November.

Yes, I didn’t get the bragging rights of finishing a novel within a month. Sucks! I’m forty thousand way behind the target that time. From this photo, it kind of looked like I failed. Well, I really did fail. Ha! Not because I wasn’t able to reach the target but because I stopped right in the middle of I know I can still write something but there are just too many things I have to do right now moments that turned into Okay, instead of doing so many things, I think I should just let myself rest for a while, I wouldn’t able to finish the novel in time, anyway. In short, I gave up. I let my novel rest itself for the last two weeks of the challenge. I don’t want to admit that I lost and failed what I had imposed upon myself on… but, lost and failure happened, so here we are.

From the start of it all, I was really positive. I felt alive. Writing a novel is something new for me; I’m not a fiction writer, so it became a good challenge for my brave. I was at the edge of my brain cells trying to hold it all together to give birth to a story. It was only a night before the challenge proper that I finally got a story in mind. It was a wonderful feeling, it’s like you got this freedom to stitch in stories of characters you want to exist on a page, on a certain lifetime, facing their own adversity and hoping that they too, will win it. It was glorious watching them unfold like a beautiful dance number in the middle of a boring school program. It was fun. Writing fiction was fun but twice harder since you are bringing something into life with your words. It’s like you’re creating your own world with your breath.

My novel Life and Its Whatnots (yes, the book title is my blog domain title haha) has a special place in my heart that although I took a break from it – I was down five Chapters (I never thought I could write Chapters for a novel) when I stopped – I shall pursue and finish it in the first quarter of 2014. Hihi :) Time to continue the adventure! I’ll let you know what kind of novel I wrote, in time.

However, unlike legit writers, I’m still going to write my novel like the way I did for NaNoWriMo — spontaneous. It’s a spontaneous novel which I bet will also surprise me in the end. Here’s to labor pains because I’m gonna give birth to a novel, my novel, #SOON.

***
You don’t call your work, “work.”

I am learning a lot of things from work. There are too many inspiring people and advocacy all around me that I can’t help but to thank God for every opportunity He’s giving me to dive into this spiral of Awesomeness. I love it. He knows the perfect timing and the perfect venue to show a stubborn kid like me that He is God and that His plans are always always perfect! I can and will elaborate on this matter next time ;)

My boss let me accompany him to our seminar with my home court, I mean my alma mater (PUP), last week. I was encouraged when he said this towards the end of the workshop:

If you’ll call your work, “work,” then its really gonna be work. You’ve got to love what you do: do your passion, know your purpose and plan your way to get wherever that passion and purpose is. You don’t get successful overnight, success is a journey.

He knows the virtue of walking your way to success. And yes, it don’t happen in a blink of an eye.

***

Sorry, Khay. (this deserves another post)

My best friend, Khay, got this tampo at me — and a major tampo at that. I was just busy lately and I hope you know that I love love love you, my dear. And nothing will ever change that. I’m sorry if I’m a pain in the neck, sometimes. Or, most times. I’ll make it up to you. I don’t promise not to hurt you, because that’s my nature even when I don’t intend to. I’ll see you soon.

***

Nine days til Christmas!

Let’s spend this few days of 2013 worthwhile! Tis the season to be jolly! Fill your heart with love and learn to give all that love away. Cheers, everyone!

***

You shouldn’t miss Frozen!!!

Because Love is something worth melting for..

If you haven’t watch this movie, do yourself a favor and go to theaters near you! I promise, you’ll love Olaf and Kristoff and Anna and Sven and Elsa and everyone! :) this movie is just an ultimate feel-good movie! It caps on the top 5 of my favorite animated movies of all time!!!

The Insides: Dissected

Ever since I was a young blogger, I had always dreamed of the what’s-inside-my-bag post! HAHA! Sobrang jologs pero yes. I shall make that dream into reality now. I was supposed to create the post months ago but I was busy then, anyways. Are you ready? #game

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I bought this bag more than a year ago at Egg. Pre-buying this, I am always on a backpack moment which I really enjoyed since I have all of my things inside it (minsan kahit I wear super formal, I’m on backpack lol). But, dalaga stage comes once in your life and you got to surrender to what it needed you to do, fashion-wise. HAHAjk!

I liked this bag since it has compartments and bigger space than an ordinary bag which can accommodate the laptop that I bring to the office everyday. Since I got (almost) everything inside my bag, it’s always heavy: two to four kilos heavy estimate. When people try to bring my bag for me, they always complain about how heavy it is or what do I have inside it that makes it weigh like that. I am here to assure you, I bring no hollow blocks or any form of bakal inside. Haha!

My bag is such a mess. Here you go, judge yourself.

Up first, the essentials.

090This wallet was a keepsake from my Japanese cousin back in March when they came to visit Philippines. They knew that my mother and I are collecting Stitch items and so they gave us wallets – STITCH wallets!! My mother got the brown one and I got this white one. This has fewer compartments than the Coach wallet I’m using before. BUT Stitch is Stitch and I love love love this wallet! Ain’t it so cute???

097Aside from a wallet, I always have a coin purse since I am not a fan of taking out your whole wallet just to get your fare money to pay the jeep. :) this one is a gift from my DGroupmate Nayra (yay)!

094I don’t have a lot of keys. I only got three for the Office and two for our House. Oh, say hello to another Stitch right there! :D

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My umbrella is in fuchsia (not my favorite color). I never intended to buy it last March but when the rain threaten to soak you wet, you don’t have much of a choice, right? I just bought this at 7-eleven for P180! So far, it survived for more than three months now.

096Philippine weather is in transition from summer to rainy months; therefore, it’s also important to protect your eyes when Mister Sun shines so bright after an hour of heavy rain. It can happen! In our country, it is possible! Better prepared than sorry. Lol.

When I bought this pair at F21, it doesn’t include a case with it. The solution? Improvise an old Artwork paper bag into an eyeglass holder (haha)! But I’m planning to buy a decent pouch for this one, it’s very vulnerable in its paper holder. Lol.

092These are some “admin” things that I bring with me every time since we don’t go to the office frequently anymore. I need to have it with me because it helps calm my nerves when I needed something for work but I won’t go to the office; it’s always nice to know that it’s just inside your bag. Haha! Babaw.

I also got my Cattleya Steno notebook so I can jot down important details for work; 2013 Planner so I’m not lost with our office schedules on trainings, workshops, etc etc; book (when I took this photo I’m finishing Joshua Harris’ I Kissed Dating Goodbye, I wrote about it here) which I love to read while traveling to and fro office or field.

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091I always bring my laptop with me and I think it is the major reason why I have a heavy bag. Lol.

I got two pouches and a pencil case. The pink pouch is dedicated for everything kikay although I’m not really the type who makes sure she looks fresh every single time. Most, if not all, girly items are gifted so I just always have it inside my pink pouch. We may never know the right time to use these weapons, right? Hehe. The black pouch is intended for everything wire-y. Lol. The pencil case, well, you know what’s inside a pencil case right? Yeah, I have there pens, pencil/eraser, paste (this is useful haha), USB and paper clips!

That’s all! That’s all I have inside my bag. And sometimes I still wonder if all those things really weigh that much. Haha! Share your bag on the table, what’s inside yours? :)

 

 

Small Things

I was at the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) today, yesterday and last week. I had been fixing something for our organization regarding this new BIR policy on official receipts and invoices for business owners. The old ORs/invoices will be invalid starting July 1, hence, new ones are needed to be printed out before the end of this month; those who won’t be able to comply will be penalized with P20,000-P50,000 (that’s A LOT of money especially for small business and NGOs huhu). I think the BIR wasn’t able to communicate this information properly with the business owners even though they’re telling the news that it has been proclaimed six months ago (we only knew about this policy at the end of May). What’s kind of more  frustrating about it is that they are not going to extend the deadline. Talk about mercy! Dear Lord, please help our organization not get penalized. (please pray for us too — the processing of papers, printing of new receipts before deadline; we can’t afford to be penalized)

***

Sometimes I just wanna complain because of all this “messengerial” duties that I’m doing now and in the previous months. There would be moments that I would think that this is not what I’m supposed to be doing since it was never a part of my job-description nor it was a course that I finished in College. And there would also be moments where I ask myself if this is what I’m worth?

Before I get too succumbed by all the lies in my head, I had to snap out of it by renewing my perspectives in life.

***

Most people don’t understand my field of work — they don’t really get it. I totally understand them since I myself took my time in figuring out all the whys I had in mind.

If you must know, I am working as a Program Officer for a non-government organization (NGO) for two years now. I had tendered my resignation last February of this year but I’m still extended up to this time.

Six months back, aside from being a Program person, my boss requested if I could do the admin stuff in the office since our Admin Officer resigned then. At first I thought it was easy, but boy, I was so wrong! (!!!) It was never anything that I thought it would be. It got me at the verge of insanity at some point. HAHA. Added to that, I was doing most of the messengerial errands already (long story…). Admin work is fine but messengerial? To be honest, I don’t like it. I felt that I don’t deserve to be one.

***

Here’s a thing about humility: Jesus washed the feet of His disciples.

I don’t know when or what particular month in those six months that I felt peace in what I’m doing as a Program/Admin/Messengerial person at the office. I’m always praying to God that He will always guide me wherever I go or whatever I do because I wanted to please Him and obey Him. And I know I had failed many times, but I kept praying for a heart that is willing to be used by Him everyday anyways.

There were times that I felt that I’m not appreciated in spite of what I’m doing but I’m thankful that the Lord gives grace to people like me who could really be sunk at being too self-absorbed.

***

In my two years in an NGO, I can say that I learned a lot. It was and is a great ride. I can’t even narrate in words how much growth I had experience ever since. It was wonderful. Galing ni Lord kung san Niya ko nilagay, ngayon ko lang narealize!

I was strengthened intellectually and emotionally throughout the whole course of being a Program Officer. I had no clue and I started from scratch but see, the Lord got my back on the most confusing times of my life at the work place. #iSurvived It was amazing now that I think of it. (I’ll have to have a separate post on the learnings I had working with the people in an NGO.)

One of the pivotal moments though was doing the Admin/Messengerial work — the things I considered of “small” importance when it was not. I gained new appreciation for them. It was different. Imagine, they take care of a company’s government duties and all! I mean, we must not look on them as if we’re much greater than them because we are in a higher position. NO. That mindset is wrong.

It reminded me so much how small people (like me) matter in the plans of God. There are big people, yes, but they also needed the small people. We need each other. We compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses. That no matter what your role in life is, you have occupy a space here on earth and therefore: you matter.

***

The small things are not always the smallest when it comes to greatness of impacts. Small doesn’t mean less. There might be difference in sizes, difference in roles played, difference in circumstances and it all boils down on how you’ll see the small things in the bigger picture of life.

My Love for Words and My Random Thoughts

Back in grade school and high school, I was never the girl who writes, nor the one who reads, but I got a love affair with words.

It started with rejection. The time when my third grade teammate reiterate my failure in misspelling a word that made our group lose the class competition. It’s that rainy Saturday of April when somebody I considered close to me told me I wasn’t pretty and I smell odd. It’s one afternoon at the rehearsals where one of the members of the group I’m leading blatantly refuses whatever I say about the sequencing of the play.

It started with the feeling of being out of place. When I met with a new group of friends who can’t entertain my existence in a discussion of a matter I’m not familiar with. When I entered a room full of strangers and no one dared to shake my hand and welcome me in. When I dressed up for the occasion to which I was not particularly invited to.

It started with weakness – of feeling inadequate, unsure, uncertain of other things I can do to be socially accepted.

Bad things come into three and so do good things. From the time of rejection, the feeling of being out of the boat with my shaky knees and teary eyes, it took someone who gave me a tap at the back and told me something that somehow erased my doubts. It took all the promises I had to read from Ephesians, Psalms, Jeremiah, Matthew, Proverbs or anywhere in the Bible, the promises from the One who could give my heart the stillness in the midst of chaos. It took words to get me through the sandstorms in the desert of self-pity and loneliness.

Later on, I found out that my love for words can flourish by: flipping through pages of adventure from different chapters of a book; or, slow dancing with my emotions from the core of my heart with the pen in my hand. Hence, I became the girl who reads and the girl who writes. Through it, I was exposed. It brought the birth and the continuous growth (in terms of content) of this blog. I wanted to vent out all my thoughts – on hope, faith, joy, grief, love, failure, life, God, or whatever else – and somehow, by doing so, hoped to make a little impact on someone’s life. The little impact that can be an entry point in planting seeds of trust (even just a mustard) to Someone Up There who makes everything happen for a reason.

And I want to tell you that I have always (and still am) insecure about people reading my stuff. Because, even though it is probably not a wise choice on my part, I write with my heart on my sleeve.

-Isabel Garcia

Yes, I was and still is insecure, but courage makes you do things as crazy as what you can do for love. I’m clueless if what I’m doing really matters to anyone (or even to just one someone) in cyberspace. I got no idea if I’m making any difference or if I am able to touch the depths of someone’s soul. But I got to thank those few who had been generous enough in giving me their appreciation, affirmation and support in this endeavor. My inner child in me always feels like being rewarded with an ice cream (triple chocolate, of course) every time I would hear those encouraging words. You might start to notice how much I value words. It’s kinda like my love language.

I still won’t know my impact nor my contribution to World Peace because of this blog, however, one thing’s for sure: I got to say what I got to say. There’s too much hope one could give to one’s self. :)

And with all these, I will end with my late Moodboard for August: Wake Up and Live. Wake up, do something for yourself, start over, make a move, live. :)

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Embrace the Brace + Reunite with JJ Friends

Cutest candy braces evarrrrr! Then some sudden shift to some Junior Jock reunion last Friday! Woot!

Bud JJ Lois  and Poss JJ Carlos.

Me and Poss.

Me and Bud.

And unfortunately, we find it hard to take a picture of us in one shot, thus we don’t pursue it anymore. Haha!

We had a handful of laughs and musical realizations after watching this:

It’s a very fun week last week. And my weekend too was great pardon for being random, yet again because me and my DGroup (Discipleship Group) went to Touch of Glory Prayer Mountain and God just blessed me with dear sisters-in-Christ who will help me grow deeper in my relationship with Him and to whom I’ll share a part of me and my life. I can’t believe God’s grace. O. Ver. Whel. Ming.

Orayt. That’s it for now. Great week ahead!

With Monday luv and braces,

~Ninsy~

XXO

Weather or Not

At this moment (that I’m writing this) it’s only eleven in the morning. I’m at the office as I’m supposed to be and there’s no other person here except me. The rain is pouring real hard and the lightning and thunder are kinda scary. Okay, major scary. I’m truly afraid of them. It’s black out in here already and I’m just anxiously waiting for the electricity to come up. But I think it’s not gonna be showing up progress anytime soon.

I don’t mind being alone for quite long but I wish at this time I have someone with me here. Well, Big Dad is always with me everywhere I go so that’s what I need to ponder upon. I just thought, I’m blessed because even I’m alone at the office and there’s heavy rain and scary thunder and lightning, at least I’m safe and have a decent place to rest. Others don’t. Thus, let’s pray that our fellow men will be spared from flashfloods and landslides which is prevalent in our urban and rural areas.

Then, I’ll be random~

Sometimes in our lives, we don’t see the bestest things–we always look for more. We are given so much but are we good stewards of what was given to us? We waste it often times, you see. We complain and grumble as if it’s God’s duty to bless us. And even when He gave what we need, we felt as if it doesn’t suffice because it’s not what we want. Our mindset is poor therefore yielding bad motives and mediocre actions. And yes, I’m very guilty of this.

The art of appreciating every single thing that is happening in our lives should be one of our priorities. Somebody once said, life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond to it. Dig this, whatever’s happening in our lives right now is the outcome of our mindset and thoughts. It’s a choice we made. And I believe that we always know which way to go–right or wrong. Yet we choose to follow the easy path which give us things we ‘thought’ we needed which at the end won’t matter. Nobody said doing the right ways are easy. It’s never easy, it’s impossible. But with Big D’s help, it can be. Yes!

Alright, i dunno if i make sense. All i really wanna say is for you to take extra care. Rainy days are extra effort. Okay?

And oh, by the way, hello month of August! Let’s do and be the best this month and the months to come. Yay!!!

Meditate. Listen. Live. Cheers!