#choosemust

“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”

– Mark Twain

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I saw this book on the Best Sellers section of one bookstore last Friday, and it instantly grabbed my attention. I admit it wasn’t the title that made me look twice, but the cover as a whole (I told you I was a very visual person). It was artsy and messy and the title was made to look like it was hand-painted by a child.

My heart fluttered when I saw the copy on top ripped out of its clear, tight plastic covering. That was an opportunity I wasn’t willing to pass up. That means I had every right to flip through the pages and see if it was at least a bit more interesting inside than it already was on the outside.

True enough, the colorful texts and hand-drawn/painted illustrations inside didn’t disappoint. It ignited a flame inside of me that kept me warm and giddy inside. I was in love.

I was flipping through the pages when I realized that this book was what I needed in a really, really, really long time. I couldn’t let go of it because I wanted to devour every single thing the author, Elle Luna had to say. I was and still rotting in a quarter-life-crisis and this book was one of the self-help, inspirational reads I was looking for for the longest time. I went over the whole book once more and I decided I needed to get one of the last 4 copies (at least on the bestseller table) that night. I didn’t have much money left and the price was way more than I was willing to pay for a book then, but my heart was breaking free out of my ribs telling me not to let go of the book, but I did.

One part of me was willing to starve for days just so I could get the book that instant while a smaller part of me was saying I could go on another week without it. It’ll have to wait and I’m gonna have to practice self-control and delayed gratification especially in that particular moment. So I let go of the book and went to sulk over to the art supplies section. When I got what I wanted, I went to my other favorite section where the art books were and took note of some and listed them on my “to-buy” list.

But before I left the store, and after thinking it through for another 3 seconds or so, I finally decided that I had to get it then or not at all.

It was not a hard decision at all and I’m glad I grabbed a copy because I’m loving every bit of it. I don’t even want it to end. Like I said, I wanted to devour every bit of it as slow and as sure as possible, like it was a cake I would never have the chance to eat again, ever. I wanted to absorb every last bit of inspiration I can feed out of it.

So far, that flame I mentioned that has been ignited deep within me has grown into a fire that helped me think a bit clearer now. I’m slowly getting hypnotized into pursuing a passion that I have yet to fully understand and discover. It was the encouragement I’ve always wanted to have, the push that I needed to feel confident about what I might have potential in. At last, I have found a source of courage and enlightenment that I have longed for and prayed for over and over.

I’m so glad I found this book and I would hold on to this until I have fully understood what my purpose is. I may have no clear direction of where my life is headed, and the path in “choosing must” might not be as easy as it sounds, but with faith in God and in myself and with a bit of inspiration here and there, I know I can make it.

I’ll share a few more things I have learned from this book soon, and I’ll try my best to go on this journey, inspired to find and pursue what I was really born to do in life.

Here’s to a rough but meaningful and fulfilling journey we call life!

30 Day Writing Challenge: DAY 19

Discuss Your First Love.

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This has got to be one of the most special entries I have yet to write about. I’m not sure whether to share how I met my first love or how we are now because a few clicks on the tags “B” or “Bri” or “boyfriend” will put the pieces of our story together. I have written so much about him since we’ve met and I don’t know what else to say now.

I have to say though, my first love is definitely an angel sent to me from above. I can’t forget how he always gave me butterflies in my stomach, the kind that made me feel nervous but happy inside. He made me feel like I was someone special when I’ve never even thought of myself as such before. I know how our parents make us feel loved and cared for, but this is different. It was a feeling I never even imagined I could have.

Did I say that he also has the most wonderful voice I have ever heard from among those who I know personally? When he speaks, you’d definitely gush at his manly, proper and calming voice, but when he sings, you might as well just pour a bucket of ice cold water on yourself and don’t say I didn’t warn you! You’d be swept off your feet in an instant and I’m not even exaggerating on this. His voice alone is so damn hot!

Since we’re on the topic, let me just say a few more things about how hot he is. You see, he’s the mysterious and the quiet type. He’s tall and handsome and the way he stares at me makes me melt like crazy. He’s a complete package, to tell you the truth and he’s definitely my type.

Part of this “complete package” I’m talking about is the fact that he’s more than just another guy who’s looking to hook up. Over time I felt our relationship deepened from a simple attraction to what I have come to learn as love. He has become not only my partner-in-crime but also my best friend. He knows everything about me—-my past, my insecurities, my problems, my fears, my imperfections, but those didn’t turn him off. He accepted me for who I am despite all the revelations and seeing the worst version of me.

Today, as I write this, I’m happy to say that I am still so much in love with him. It has been 4 years since we’ve met and even though our story doesn’t depict the perfect relationship we’ve always wanted, I know that I’ve found the perfect first love in him.

He’s my first and I definitely won’t mind if he also becomes my last. 🙂

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My V&M Haul

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I’ve been eyeing a lot of V&M Naturals products the past few days and I was waiting for payday so bad because I wanted to get my hands on their bestsellers.

I first tried V&M back in college and that’s when I first heard about emu oil. If you read more about it, you’ll know how this oil has so many benefits, that’s why I got attracted to it so easily. Also, I have this thing for organic products because at my age, I wanted to be able to take care of myself the best way possible, and having these products more readily available in the market really helps. If I’m not mistaken, most if not all V&M products contain emu oil and everything is organic, so I’m expecting a lot from this skin care line.

2 days ago, I ended up buying:

1) Jagermeister Pore Suit soap – This is one of their bestselling soaps. It contains: Emu Oil, Jagermeister, Willow Tree, Sugar Cane Extract, Turmeric, Pepper, Cantaloupe, Sugar Beets, Unripe Grape, Cajeput, Lemon Extract. According to their website and sales ladies, this soap helps clean pores from deep within, so it does a good job in clearing the face from impurities.

2) Happy Pores With Hazel Toner – This is best paired with the Jager soap especially for people like me with oily and acne-prone skin. I’m in love with hazel as it helps tighten our skin and reduce inflammation. I’ve used Dickinson’s Pore Perfecting toner before so when I learned that V&M has a variant of this toner with witch hazel, I didn’t hesitate to get one for myself!

3) Red Clay Mineral Primer – I’m eyeing a more expensive primer for my extremely oily skin, but since this one’s organic, I thought I give this a try.

4) Smooch Lip Detox – According to their website, this doesn’t have petroleum, instead it contains the finest oils, making the lips look younger looking and healthier.

5) Exfobomb and Bikini Bomb – The exfobomb is a new product that works well with the bikini bomb. It exfoliates the skin which kind of prepares it to completely absorb the bikini bomb for more effective whitening.

After 2 days of using these products, I don’t see any huge difference on my skin and pores, but I can feel that the Jager soap gently cleanses my skin. As for the toner, there definitely is a sting when applying it to my face after cleansing, unlike Dickinson’s which is a bit disappointing, but I’ll give it a few more weeks. I’m not giving up on these products.

I also tried the primer after, just to test it out. I didn’t expect it to have the normal consistency of a primer, but it has silicone, so what should I have expected, right? I used it for work the next day, but it didn’t really keep the oiliness at bay.

The Exfobomb and Bikini Bomb combo didn’t really have that instant whitening like what most people said on their feedback on the website, but just the same, I’ll give this a couple more weeks to take effect. Slowly but surely, right?

I’m happy with the Smooch Lip Detox though. Unfortunately, I feel like I always have to store it in the fridge every time I come home in the afternoon because it melts like crazy. It’s a disaster waiting to happen. I’m afraid that one day, I’m going to have to just transfer the whole thing in a lip balm container. Despite this, I have to say that I have definitely found the lip balm I’m going to be using for quite a long time. I love the minty cooling effect and how it definitely moisturizes my lips. I can even see my lips getting lighter by the moment. I also love how my nude lipstick looks much better on my lips when I apply it on top of the lip balm.

So there you go, my second beauty review ever! I’m not really good in making reviews, but this is just to share my honest opinion of my experience so far with organic products! I’m no beauty blogger and I’m not turning into one, don’t worry! 😛

30 Day Writing Challenge: DAY 18

Post 30 facts about Yourself

I’m not sure I’m ready to divulge 30 friggin’ facts about myself, but here goes nothing!

1. When I was in preschool, I remember being a bully and a brat. I remember my parents consoling a crying classmate during a small gathering at school. I’m not sure what I did to her exactly, but I know I was the reason she was crying that day!

2. I used to be so good in Math especially back in grade school and my parents know that. In high school, I may only have been an average kid, but I loved solving problems, fractions, solving for that infamous letter X!

3. I may need to confirm this with my parents, but almost 2 decades ago, when our house was just being built, I may have pushed my little brother against some hollow cement blocks sitting on top of a gravel mound. He ended up getting stitched and I think he was just 3 then! That was very traumatizing for me and I guess for him!

4. My first kiss on the lips was back in preschool and if I’m not mistaken, the boy’s name is Ryan.

5. I studied in an all girls’ Catholic school run by nuns for 11 years!

6.  My first celebrity crush was Carlo Aquino (G-mik days) and my whole extended family would tease me whenever we see him on tv.

7. I don’t eat peanut butter and I would never eat Loaf bread with Nutella, unless it’s on a donut or on crepes. I’m weird, I know!

8. My favorite fruit is mango and I would eat anything with mango: Mango Graham cake, Mango tapioca, Mango crepes, Mango tart from Iloilo, Mango ice cream (my favorite), salad with mango dressing, anything with mango except for mango juice! I know, it gets weirder!

9. No matter how tan I get, my upper body always returns to its natural color, but my lower torso doesn’t!

10. I love bookstores and craft stores and when most girls go gaga shopping for clothes, I go wild over books and art materials!

11. I haven’t read 60% of the books I have bought over the years!

12. I’m such a visual person. I judge books by their covers, I am very critical of people’s clothes and the way they carry themselves, my closet is full of colorful stuff (even my bags and shoes), I love artsy places, coffee shops and restaurants.

13. Growing up, my favorite color was BLUE. That was until grade school. Since college, I’ve become so into YELLOW and that’s where the obsession fascination for this color started!

14. There was a time when we didn’t have a house help and that’s when I started to learn how to cook by myself. I was in grade school, I think.

15. I can say that the scariest, saddest, happiest, most degrading but rewarding moments of my life were when I used to work in the hospital. That’s cheesy!

16. I felt loved more by my college classmates than any of the high school classmates I had, ever did.

17. Being a nurse, I’ve done things I never thought I would ever do,ever in my life, things that most people would find scary or disgusting.

18. Inserting an IV cannula was one of the scariest things I had to learn, but when I did, I became obsessed with it! I used to look at people’s veins all the time and I think I still do!!

practice!

Here were my two senior nurses that let me practice IV insertion on them back when I was just a nurse trainee

19. My favorite shift at work used to be the Night Shift: Patients would all be asleep, and we could eat, share scary stories, chat and play, sleep or even practice IV insertion like what we did on the photo above!

20. I am an extreme procrastinator except when it comes to art projects and little DIY projects!

21. I lived with my grandmother and my uncle until I was about 1-2 years old and just like in the movies, when my parents showed up at the door one day to finally get me, I ran back into my grandma’s house which made my mama cry. They only told me about this story when I was in college.

22. I’ve been indirectly bullied in high school.

23. I have the worst trust issues in the world.

24. I have this thing for feel good movies and disaster movies!

25. I don’t have any unusual abilities like flipping eyelids inside out or having any double joints. I’m very ordinary! haha!

26. I started shooting in film with a real camera back in May 2014 and I haven’t stopped since! Check out some of the photos here! Here’s my little camera collection to date:

Work it! #marsshootsfilm #keepfilmalive #believeinfilm #filmisnotdead

A post shared by M A R S M E D I N A (@marsymallows) on

27. Some of my hobbies include calligraphy, stamp carving, art-journaling, watercolor painting, crafting and snail-mailing.

28. I follow over 2k people on Instagram and most of which are artists, crafters and photographers! 🙂

29. I started blogging back in 2002, when I was in grade 6 and I wrote about it here.

30. I’m extremely afraid of ghosts, of heights and falling and a whole bunch of other little things!

Things I’m Grateful For

Lately, my mood swings have gotten really bad and I know it may only have been aggravated by stress from work, my monthly period and perhaps the ever changing weather. Plus, there’s the fact that girls are perpetually bipolar beings, so…

Anyway, I have to be honest that I’ve been really down mostly because I thought that nothing has and can ever go right in my life, but I have long accepted that. What I didn’t see coming though was the little things that made me smile for the first time in a long time.

There’s the ever patient and loving boyfriend who went out of his way one night to take the frown off my face.

There’s the unexpected good news at work the other day which I honestly didn’t see coming.

Then there’s this customer whom I talked to also the other day who caught me off guard by asking me what I need prayers for. Shocked as I was, I didn’t pass up the chance to be prayed for and over by a stranger, even if I thought that it was a prank. I was relieved though that it wasn’t.

Right in those moments, I saw how good our God is. I thought I was going to cry over the phone while the person on the other end of the line was asking God to bless my family.

It’s true what they say that “stars shine the brightest in the darkest of night”