Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Hangang sa muli, Macalañang!

Last work day of the year, last day in Malacañang, my last day in APEC NOC, and also my last day in civil service (for now).

Thank you APEC NOC, and to the people behind APEC NOC, it was a bliss working with you all ❤️ 

Salamat ODG, CMS, Security, Substantives, Hotels Team, AELM Team, AFP personnels, LGUs - CDC, Tagaytay, Bacolod, Boracay, Bataan, Iloilo, Cebu, and most especially, heartfelt thanks to all LOs from various agencies and LGUs we have worked with. Mahal po namin kayo.

Maraming Salamat, Macalañang! Hangang sa muli.

See you soon, Ops family

Since this is our last day, please allow me to post a long, and cheesy farewell for my Ops family.

Here's to the sleepless nights, here's to looong deployments and spending holidays at work, here's to the birthdays, anniversaries, and special occasions we've missed - here's to missing important family days to fulfill our duty to the country, here's to the red flags, here's to the crazy shift schedules, here's to resolving unreasonable requests, here's to the uncertainties and the fears that we've conquered, here's to the issues and conflicts we have resolved together, here's to the epic work trips around the country, here's to strangers that eventually became family.

I came in, not sure of what I'll get out of it, and here I am now, sad that it finally ended. I really thought that I was applying for a post in DFA when I took the tests and panel interview last year, so I was really surprised when I received an email asking me to report to Malacañang. Looking back, I am glad that fate brought me here and that I went through this amazing journey. It was worth it, and I am so glad that I have spent it with one of the craziest yet lovable bunch of people I have ever met and worked with. You guys are truly the epitome of work hard, play hard(er). Thank you for teaching me that it is okay to let my hair down every once in a while, and to have fun while working. 

So here's to the Airport Team, the Registration Team, the Transportation Team, the Logistics Team, Admin and Finance, the Local Government Unit Coordination Team, the Tactical Operations Center, here's to my beloved Protocol and Liaison Services Team. 

Here's to the tireless and amazing men and women behind the Office of the Deputy Director General that never sleeps, here's to my beloved Operations Team

#OpsLoudandProud #NoGoodbyes

Saturday, April 25, 2015

He asked, and I said YES!

After 6 and a half years of pure bliss and crazy memories, he finally asked... And of course, I said YES ❤

Our friends, Kit and Teng just started their own photography business - Studio629 and they asked us to join them in one of their photo-shoots for their portfolio.

So I asked Jess if he's okay with the idea, and I even teased him about buying me a fake engagement ring to make the photo-shoot more believable ;) (that's me subtly dropping hints that I would like for him to propose already because, hello, 6 years!). He reluctantly obliged and we bought a cheap ring from Silverworks for the photo-shoot.

After a few e-meetings and re-schedules, we all agreed on the date: April 25.

So we woke up early, met-up with Kit and Teng, and headed to Tagaytay. I did my own make-up and didn't bother dressing up (sabi nga ni Kit: "Casual lang, yung hindi masyado mukang mag-pho-photo-shoot"). So we arrived in Caleruega, and Kit and Teng started taking our photos, the usual poses - looking at each other, walking side by side, everything was just photo-shoot normal. Little did I know that he will be proposing and that "fake" engagement shoot will turn into a "real" one.

Half an hour later we went up to the then newly built open chapel on top of a hill, and continued with the photo-shoot, Kit and Teng continued giving us instructions like "hold hands", "look at each other", "smile", and then Jess looked at me in the eye, and he told me that we will soon go back here, I was like, of course we will, because Caleruega is one of my favorite places in the world. He then reminded me that it was our 3rd time going here together, I said okay (I was already confused as to why he was saying that).

 And then he knelt. He took out a small box from his pocket, opened it, and there it was, the ring! It was classic, just the way I like it - reverse tapered band, round diamond cut, four prongs - it was perfect!
I remember asking him, "Totoo ba to?" because I thought it was still part of the fake engagement photo-shoot. He smiled and said yes...and as cheesy as it may sound, the world went completely slow-mo. I started crying and nodding my head, I went blank. All I know is that he was there kneeling, and I can't even comprehend a word he was saying! I just continued crying and nodding. All I know is that that was the most important moment of my life... We were happy and I can't thank the Lord enough for the man kneeling in front of me and the love and the life that we have been sharing for last 6 years.

To tell you honestly, I still can't remember everything he said on that day. I just remember him asking me, "Will you be my wife?" and me saying yes repeatedly. And as blurry as it may seem, it was beyond perfect for me.

On to the next chapter! ❤

Photos were taken by our amazing friends from Studio629.
Please check out their Facebook account https://www.facebook.com/studiosixtwentynine/ 
Instagram @studiosixtwentynine 
or email them at studiosixtwentynine@gmail.com. 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Date a social development worker.

Date a social development worker. Date a girl who spends most of her time empowering other people. Someone who finds happiness in seeing other people succeed.  
Find a girl who is involved with social development work. She loves learning from experiences; you can bring her to a humble sitio and witness how she enjoys talking to people about their dreams and aspirations.
Date a girl who is involved with social development work, she sees beauty in the chaos of life and will try to make the most out of it.
Find a girl who is involved with social development work, for she will always find hope in everything; she will make a great companion in life.
A girl who writes not only to express herself to the world, but most importantly, she writes to engage other people to do their own share in shaping the future for the coming generations.
Who uses the words strategic, development, sustainability, and impact on a daily basis, and could even use them all in one sentence.
She would love to hear stories of initiatives, stories of impact, and be part of it too.
Date a girl who would travel to places to not only enjoy and experience the culture, but also to observe the marginalized, and to deduce ways on how their lives can be improved.
A girl, who, when presented a big amount of money, thinks of how many sustainable projects it can fund and how many families would benefit from it rather than thinking of how many clothes, bags, or make-up she could buy.
A girl who thinks about minimizing carbon foot prints coz she wants a safer planet for future generation to live in. She also cares more about climate change than how to style her hair.
Date a girl who cares more about reforesting hectares of denuded forest areas than how she would look like after a two-hour trek up the mountains.
A social development worker, someone who would not mind getting sweaty, dirty, and is willing to brave the floodwater just to extend help to disaster stricken families. Someone who instead of staying at home on a crazy weather day, is on-call and is ready to be deployed for relief efforts.
Date that girl who has that innate sense of urgency to respond quickly to the need of others. Coz you know you’ll be well taken cared off.
She thinks inclusive.
She knows how to fight for her beliefs, her rights, her aspirations, and that of others too. Who believes in social good, a girl who knows when, and how to speak up for others so that they will have the chance to be heard too.
She asserts herself to get what others deserve. She fights for equal opportunities across gender, stature, and race. She believes in the importance of one’s welfare. Who believes in building one’s capacities - you know that she will someday be a great life partner that will constantly push you to be better than who you are right now.
She understands that helping can go beyond than just philanthropy or doling out money. Who tries to inspire and uplift others in her own way. Who creates little ripples of change in the best way she can. She knows humility, service, selflessness, and compassion, which she tries to exude every day.
When you are with her, don’t forget to compliment her. Don’t just tell her she’s pretty or smart; tell her what she does matter. When she is stressed about work, don’t pacify her, be tough, and remind her the reason why she is there in the first place. There will always be rough times that she might want to give up, but remember that once she is reminded of why there are such jobs like hers, she will get through it, she always will.
Also, you must understand that you will never have her for yourself, for she will always be a woman for others. There will be a lot of times when she’ll choose field work, coastal clean ups, and relief operations over dinner dates or movie nights.  But never think that she does not care about you or your relationship, she just cares a lot that it transcends to other people too. Never get tired of telling her that you are proud of her, you support her, coz she gets her strength from the people around her, better yet, find time to join her in her causes, she’d love to show that giving and caring world to you too. ###