#30daysofthankful

The Gift

I cannot imagine NOT having books. I am so grateful for books, for the love of reading, for second-hand/pre-loved books, for old-book smell, new-book smell.

I am never lonely, for as long as there are books to read. They are gateways to other worlds. Stories to dive into. Characters to get to know.

Stitches & Words | You’ll never be lonely surrounded by books

I read The Gift while taking a break from Earthsea.

The husband is away on an overnight trip with his team. Apart from the dogs keeping me company (or is it the other way around? After all, there’s seven of them and only one of me), there are a lot of books here to read.

While taking a break from Earthsea, I decided I’d read Cecelia Ahern’s The Gift. Lou Suffern’s story is a good reminder to look at how we are living – are we constantly in a hurry? Always feeling the pull of having to be in two places at one time? What is it all for?

In the seemingly endless juggle between work and family, I guess there is a case for such as a question as this: is it juggling if you constantly choose one over the other? Always choosing work, thinking that family cannot fire you. But is it true?

At the end of our lives, not all of us will have the opportunity to make things right. Not everyone will have the chance to make that lasting positive memory that we can leave behind. So why wait til the end?

Time is a gift. One that we cannot earn back or buy more of. Money can be earned, lost, then earned back. Just think about that for a moment.

Thankful for my Go-To Apps

If I haven’t mentioned it before, I say it now: I am thankful for the Internet.

19 years ago, the husband and I met thru mIRC. We might never have met without the Internet. I say this because we had no common friends or interests, and we moved in entirely different worlds prior to knowing each other.

Today, I am showing appreciation for something more specific that requires access to the Internet: Apps that I use all the time.

Stitches & Words | Thankful for our Go-To Apps

  • Netflix
  • YouTube
  • Instagram
  • Facebook (and Messenger)
  • Viber (and Line)
  • WordPress
  • Gmail
  • Waze
  • Shopee and Lazada

Entertainment. Information. Inspiration. Communication. Creativity. Keeping in touch with loved ones no matter how near or far. Convenience. Feeding your inner shopaholic. These are just some of the things that these apps represent.

Yes, there is so much to be said about social media and it can be a real trap. We spend so much time scrolling through our feeds and many times it breeds negativity. We grow jealous of other people’s seemingly perfect lives, their always clean homes and workspaces, their travels, and even their OOTDs and food shots. How can they look perfect all the freaking time?! If that’s how you’re using social media and it affects you by making you feel like you aren’t enough – then I would be the first one to tell you to walk away from all of it.

I try to be conscious about NOT hiding behind the screen while in other people’s company and I do call out the husband whenever he’s on his phone too much while we’re supposed to be out enjoying a meal together, or hanging out.

More importantly, I firmly believe in using the Internet as a platform for spreading good, and for enriching ourselves and our relationships. It’s just like everything else in life, we are given tools that are neither good nor bad in or of themselves, it’s up to us how to use them, and to what purpose.

How about you? What apps are you thankful for and why?

**This month, I am doing 30 Days of Thankful

Our Favorite Restaurant: Zensho

Something as simple as deciding where to eat used to ignite senseless fights like this one. When it came to Zensho though, it’s always a unanimous decision 🙂

We go there for either lunch or dinner, once every month. The serving staff are already quite familiar with us. On last month’s visit, it was a particularly busy night. Friends were going to meet us there so we asked for a table for four. To our surprise, when we were ushered to the next available spot, it was only for two. Apparently, the lady assumed we only needed a small table because she got so used to seeing just us two regulars.

Stitches & Words | Our Favorite Restaurant : ZenshoFor sure they don’t serve the best in Japanese cuisine in Metro Manila. But they serve decent food, at a really good price point. And most important of all – they have an eat-all-you-can promo for food that you order ala-carte.

I am thankful for Zensho, for all the comfort its food has brought us on every single visit; and for the all-too-familiar setting we love going back to specially when we need to do some stress eating!

**This post is still part of my 30 Days of Thankful series.

Pawrenthood

There are days when a faint smell of pee permeates around the house. And there are definitely a LOT of days when the white tiled floor looks so dirty, and even sticky in some parts. We’ve got a few chewed up slippers, and every now and then a piece of clothing or other (mostly socks) would be dragged into a crate.

Any papers they can reach will surely be torn to shreds in minutes. And floor rugs better be sturdy because they can ruin those real fast!

The cost of vaccines and other fees add up. Then you’ve got to clean up after them – between 4 critters, no matter how big or small, that’s a lot poop in one day.

Making travel plans means figuring out who gets to look after these cuties. They also motivate us to not stay out too late, because they need to be let out.

Caring for dogs is big responsibility. And we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Thankful for this Pawrenthood gig.

At the start of this year we only had two dogs: Chiclet Onyx and Sirius Black. In March, they had three little pups, and two stayed with us – Pandora and Roku. A month ago, these three came along: Jango Night Fury, River Rega, and Satchmi. The plan is to re-home them with friends and family.

**Check out my previous 30 Days of Thankful 2018 posts.

19th Street Halloween Shindig 2018

We didn’t prepare much for last night’s Halloween Party at 19th Street, yet I still think it went quite well.

The youngest (human) resident of #99 was the star of the show – in these photos she she was trying on the masks that the two competing teams made on-the-spot for her:

Stitches & Words | 19th Street Halloween Shindig 2018

Though she may not look like she’s having fun, I really think she was!

A major difference this year – we had no candy! Yup, no sweet treats for everyone though we still had sugar rush thanks to the drinks and donuts.

Today, I am kicking off 30 Days of Thankful 2018 with a big thank you to everyone for indulging me in keeping up with this wonderful tradition that I truly hope we continue for many many many years to come: our annual Halloween party.

Last night was all about coming together and having loads of fun. We didn’t have to proclaim a best in costume winner because it wasn’t about dressing up or putting on scary make-up. There was no prize for the winning team apart from the recognition for a job well done, because it wasn’t about bringing home a prize.

It’s an opportunity to spend time with family and laugh so hard. It’s a chance to play games and be silly. And yes, it also gives us a reason to dress the kids up and take photos that we can blackmail them with for when they grow up. Like this one, my favorite Halloween photo so far, from 10 years ago:

Stitches & Words | 19th Street Halloween Shindig 2018

And I already have an idea for next year’s party, one that I’m writing down now so we don’t forget: Favorites. And scavenger hunt.

How did you spend Halloween?

**30 Days of Thankful is an annual album project started by Cathy Zielske. I made an album for last year, and I decided to try to write a daily post for this year. I may also still decide to do a physical album because, why not?

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