Thursday, December 11, 2014

12 Gifts of Christmas

It's that time of the year again! It is December and we all know what that means.. it's almost Christmas!


Since we're just some days away from that 'most wonderful time of the year', I made a list of my Gift Ideas for Christmas. This list is specifically for young adults like me, who may want to give presents to their family and friends. These are just some items that might be present in your loved-ones' Christmas wishlist.


I remember during my college days that every time we had our Kris Kringle (Manita/Manito), the number one my gift wishlist would always be a book I wanted to read. This may not be true to other girls like me, because they might prefer a beauty or style magazine. Some guys would also specifically want a comic book as their reading material gift. Get to know his/her interests so you may know what genre of book or reading material you have to get.


This is something everybody needs. It just somehow fell into place that after Christmas, we will be celebrating New Year’s Day. And that very holiday marks the start of another year – another year of planning activities and organizing events. This 2015 Year Planner is the perfect gift for just anyone, both those who are in school or at work. Just make sure he/she doesn't get too many of them, because actually each person only needs one of this.

You can get one from drinking Starbucks coffee (well, a lot of them) or just purchase one from the bookstore.

#3. BEAUTY ITEMS for Her

Some people would probably consider giving beauty items being too mainstream, but I personally think they’re still one of the best presents a lady receives on Christmas Day. For one, you do not have to consider any body size while you’re happily shopping. When a male (lover, friend, family member) gives a lady a makeup item, this would actually show that he exerted effort just by doing that. Looking at lipsticks and eyeliners isn’t really a guy’s thing. So this really begs appreciation, ladies. And once we find out we got a makeup item, we light up with excitement because, well, you know why.

A lovely online store that sells authentic makeup, which I got these photos from, is Ladybelle. Follow @ladybelleph on Instagram, check their items because they just might have the perfect Christmas gift you wanted to give to your girlfriend, girl bestfriend, sister, or mother.

#4. TIES for Him

Some men aren’t tie-people, I get that. Regardless, I would still count the ties in as good Christmas gifts. Whether for formal black suits party or for funky events, this neck accessory wouldn’t go out of style. You’d just have to know him well so you can get the tie he would most likely use. And if ties aren’t really his thing, you might consider giving him a HANDKERCHIEF instead. And well, that is every guy’s thing!


If only you can give ‘time’ as your present. Well, you can’t. However, you can give him/her a watch.
What’s good about giving somebody a watch is the fact that when they wear it, every time they look at it to check the time, they remember you. Cheesy but true.


Good shoes take you to good places. The only downside with this holiday gift is the risk of having a ‘fit’ mismatch. So if you’re going to give this as a present, make sure you get the feet size right. And yep, feet, as in both feet, left and right. Nevertheless, opening a a box with shoes inside just brings cheer to men and women alike.


Most of the good and known scents come with high prices. But, they are actually very good Holiday gifts. Plus, every holiday season, there are always sale promos coming. So, you might consider getting a Burberry, Calvin Klein or a Chanel for your loved one.


Who said Christmas presents should only be those put in boxes and wrapped in glittery papers? Well, I myself would be very happy to receive a Body Massage GC! This is perfect for children wanting to give their busy hardworking parents a ‘break’.


If you wanted to really give something special to your loved one, one thing to go for is giving something personalized. A name necklace is one example. Some of you may think name necklaces are just for girls, but I personally think, they can be worn by both girls and boys. Avoiding the ‘girly’ feel of it would be up to the design that comes with the name or the necklace chain perhaps.

An online shop, which I featured last year in this blog (*click Here to read*), also sells name necklaces for very affordable prices! Remember Nyce Finds? You definitely have to check their store out. ;)


Being sentimental often means having something done personal or customized. Aside from name necklaces, you can also give your loved ones customized fridge accessories. Just like this very cute one on the photo.

An online shop which sells really cute customized clay magnets is Personalized Accessories (@itsPAofficial). I got the photo from them, too.


I have intentionally spared gadgets and electronic devices from my list. But this should be an exception. Polaroid camera is in every person’s wishlist (well not for those who already have it and for those who prefer the big lenses). If not Polaroid, then let me just say a CAMERA. A camera is a truly wonderful Christmas gift. What else is it for? Of course, they are for capturing moments!


Last but definitely the best, nothing beats the classic tradition of giving a Christmas card or even just a Christmas note. All these gifts would always, always be more meaningful when you get a note with it. You feel happy when you receive gifts, but the Christmas message of love and thoughts will warm your heart. <3

Cards by La Be


Friday, October 31, 2014

Thoughts of a Pinay at 23

I have written this blog entry because I have just read "Brain on 23" on Huffpost. Thus, my inspiration for this late night blogging. Time check, it's 3 in the morning, I am up. And yes, I am 23.

The article is super spot on for most 23-year-olds, including myself. It is true that at this point in my life, I know I should have been doing a lot of "more meaningful" things. A thing more valuable than just staring at this laptop screen typing out words for an article I'm not even sure anyone would read. Anyway, let me bring you to a 23-year-old Filipina's point of view.


I am 23. After adults have asked what my age is, their next question would be "May trabaho ka na ba?" (Are you working?). While it is true that we work jobs we aren't sure we want, sometimes we just have to. Filipino parents almost always expect their children to be "out and about" the moment they hold their diplomas in their hands or obtain their professional licenses. By that, I mean out of the house and about to get their own jobs and earn a living. According to one of the parents I know, his 'obligation' to his son ended the moment he graduated. I don't know exactly how to feel about that if I were in the son's shoes. Will I be sad because somehow it meant that my parents will stop giving me financial support and that I will be cut off of the privileges I have been enjoying all these years? Or should I be glad that finally my father has faith in me and that I am finally in-charge of my own life?

I am 23. After adults have known what my age is, some of them would follow it up with "Eh, nag-asawa ka na ba?" (Are you married yet?). Even if Wikihow has a handful of tips on how to deal with such a question, this would also throw a penny to our thoughts on the topic. And we couldn't just brush it off our shoulders. Why? Simply because some of our friends have been married, or engaged, and others already have kids. And while it's true that most of us 23s date people we aren't sure we love, sometimes we know we need to do it believing that among them, we will find "the one". We know there are online dating sites, but most of the time we meet people by way of common friends. And that's what makes break-ups worse. Either we see their activities on the social networks or we see them at our common friends' affairs. The latter usually happens. The birthdays, family-related celebrations, and fiestas surely wouldn't reduce the chance for that to happen!

Filipinos are big on marriage and families. We look forward to weddings and baby deliveries. That's what we celebrate. And I can't say 23 is too young for that (getting married or having a baby), nor will I say it's the right time for that. If I were put on that spot, my question for myself would be: Am I ready?

I am 23. After adults have known what my age is, some of them will say "Hindi na bagay sayo ang masyadong nag-babarkada" (Stop going out/partying too much). While it's true that most 23s spend hours drinking, whether it may be on the apartment floors or out on the bars or clubs, sometimes that's what we do to unwind, and most of the time, the only way we know how. It is true we have a few obligations and that we are often stressed. But we are not stressed because of work alone. We are stressed because once you're 23 and not in college anymore,the people around expect a lot from you.

I am 23. After adults have known this, they will start a financial lecture saying "Dapat nag-iipon ka na" (You should start saving while you're still young). This is actually one of the people's expectations from us. While it is true that we're officially done in school, working, and we don't have yet children or spouses, it is also true that we don't have secure jobs yet. Saving might be a priority for some, but most of us 23s don't really mind spending the whole paycheck on that designer shoes we've been eyeing for months now, or finally purchase the latest gadget out in the market.

Well, that's even better that other older adults saying "Tulongan mo naman ang mga magulang mong mapagtapos ang kapatid mo" (You should help your parents in paying your younger sibling's college dues). A known Filipino trait is our close family ties. And yes, part of that is actually giving our younger brother/sister an extra pocket money so he/she wouldn't be asking too much from our parents. Our parents do not really tell us to do this, but somehow it is given. In other words, "automatic".

I am 23, and I agree with Molly Sprayregen when she said that 23s worry all the time. Although we do, we still don't want to get older. And yes, we still want to be considered as kids. For the Filipino families, 23 is still considered to be in the youth zone. Our parents still want us around, although they wanted us to work, they would still look forward to holidays and long weekends so we can spend time with them. And as I have said, people expect a lot from us. We do expect a lot from ourselves too. We want to do so many things. We want to go to so many places. We want to meet different people.

We are 23 and we are hungry. We are hungry for recognition. We are hungry for wealth. We are hungry for success. We are hungry for love. We are hungry for happiness. And because we are not that young anymore, but still not old yet.. what we ought to do now is to enjoy. I just turned 23 and will remain to be for 11 more months. And I have decided to live the coming days with faith in my 23-year-old self. How about you? <3

*Thank you Molly Sprayregen for the inspiration :)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

What To See in DC

It has been a year since I had my one-of-a-kind travel experience to Washington, D.C. but the memory is still with me until this very moment. This proves that, that certain travel experience was superbly wonderful… truly unforgettable. And yes, I will be sharing my DC travel story here.

A week before the trip, my Auntie asked me what places I wanted to visit. I named a couple of places but the number one (#1) on my list is, of course, the White House.

photo from

I was set to arrive at the Washington Dulles International Airport after around 12 hours of travel time from South California. And of course, the dear lady is flying alone. I think I'm getting used to having solo flights/ solo trips already, which is actually kinda exciting. Also, it gives me a sense of independence.

On the day when we were about to visit the very residence of the President of the United States, I pulled off an outfit that was seemingly fitting to the occasion. Well, it isn’t very necessarily but a touch of travel fashion wouldn’t really hurt, would it? But there's actually a funny ending to this story, which you would know later.

Just one of the many, and I mean MANY tourists wanting to take photos of and with the most important house in the United States of America.
What you can see behind me is the First Lady's garden (as they would call it). And behind that is The House.
This is the House's frontyard.
After putting a checkmark on the number one in my "What To See in DC" list, we walked around the place to go see the other spectacular sites a tourist should check out.

Next on my list, The Washington Monument.

photo from
I actually didn't take that photo. But I chose that because the Monument absolutely looks amazing in it. And I know for sure that this photo was taken from the Lincoln Memorial angle, afterdark hours.

What's so interesting about the Washington Monument is the fact that you can actually see it wherever you are in the Central DC area (well, for as long as you are outside).

During my visit to DC, the Washington Monument was closed and under repair because an earthquake which struck the place last August 2011 caused cracks on the building. Not only was I unable to scale to the top, but there was also a massive construction scaffolding surrounding it, which I believe is already gone as of writing time (October 2014).

This is my own shot of the Monument. Notice the scaffolding I was telling you about.
Number three (#3), the United States Capitol.

If you notice, I'm already wearing slippers this time. I actually bought slippers at Macy's because my feet hurt after an hour of walking around with my new shoes on. In DC, especially around the National Mall, you will have to do a lot of WALKing.

Number 4, the Lincoln Memorial.

photo from
I have always wanted to visit this historical place of the Lincoln Memorial, as it always appears in movies. White House Down, starring Jamie Foxx and Channing Tatum is just one of the many movies where you can see this beautiful place.

Number 5, the Smithsonian Institute - National Museum of Natural History.

Well, I have decided to separately write about my visit to the National Museum of National History because it is surely worthy of another post, another story. It is just so fascinating how a lot of amazing things can be kept in one place.

Number 6, the World War II Memorial.

The World War Memorial is another beautiful place to see in DC. And not just see, if you're not in a hurry, you can just sit down and chill. You can enjoy the view around, just like what the people are doing in this photo.
Number 7, the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial.

This is another place to be, as it commemorates the September 11 terrorism that happened in Pentagon.

Number 8, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

I am a Catholic, so I included this religious place on my list. And I did not regret going here even if the place is kinda far from the central DC area already. There is so much beauty in the Basilica and I'm totally in awe of the art it has. I did not come to visit just to see the beautiful images but at the same time, to pray. I had the chance to hop from one chapel to another, and to pray to different saints. Plus, the place provides you with the serene ambiance which is just perfect.

photo from

There are more places to visit in DC, and so far I've gone to these eight places on my list. I have more stories to tell, because 1 post alone isn't enough for what I have to share about Washington, DC. Indeed, there are a lot of things to see in DC, but you shouldn't miss this eight! I'm glad I did go to DC and that i was able to visit the different national icons.

Wow, writing this feels so good. Till next post! <3

Sunday, September 14, 2014


instagram photo | @sosweetsuzette


Five letters. One word. One word which promises a lot of things. One who says “hello” may or may not stay in your life. And, do or do not want to be in your life, for that matter.

I am saying hello.

Hello, because I have been gone, and now I’m back.

Yes I am back. After 5 dreadful months of dormancy and hiatus, I will be blogging again. This doesn’t mean, however, that I will post a blog entry regularly, but I will try my best to post at least once every three-four weeks. I think that’s the best I can do, for now, because I actually still have a lot of things to do. I just thought that maybe, blogging can be one of the few things I can do to unwind and de-stress myself. And perhaps, I just missed blogging. I miss writing.

My apologies to the readers who I have let down because of my long absence. I cannot promise posting any Pink Fridays entry soon. But I will be trying. In the meantime, I will be sharing some of my ‘long-overdue’ travel stories and what-nots.

Hello to new blog stories! J

September is So Sweet Suzette’s blogoversary. It’s our third! Unfortunately, we don’t have any celebratory giveaways this time. However, I am offering prayers to our Almighty. I am praising and thanking Him for all the blessings I have received.

Hello. And happy anniversary to us! Cheers! J <3

Saturday, February 8, 2014

It's Okay to be Single on Valentine's Day

Hearts day 2014
instagram photo | @sosweetsuzette

Valentine's Day sure is one of the loveliest holidays of the year. And because we are just few days away from the very special day, people's Facebook status posts are now about that day. Couples say they can't wait to spend time with their partners while single men and women say they are now looking for V-day dates.

But do we really need partners on valentine's day?

I just went through a break-up. And I guess, I'm still in the process of letting go, accepting and moving on. It was a long four years. And it's four years of my life I didn't regret. When I told my friends about what happened, their common reaction was, "Sayang dugay na mo" (It's a waste, you two were together for a long time). And yes, maybe, a number of people did not see this coming. I was one of them. I was one of those people who believed that a long-term relationship could stand the test of having a long distance relationship. But no, they were wrong. We were wrong. I was wrong.
Thinking things over made me realize a lot of things. I realized that you should not try saving the relationship just because you think it would be such a waste to throw away your wonderful memories together. No, you are not throwing away memories when you end a relationship. You keep the memories with you, and they will always have a place in your mind, and perhaps your heart. And while it feels good holding on to memories, there might just be better moments out there waiting for you to be experienced.

Yet, you choose to stay because you are content with what you have. I realized that being content and being happy are two different things. You can be somewhat happy when you're content. But when you are happy, you are always contented.

I realized that feeling sorry for the 'other' person sometimes becomes the reason why you don't end the relationship. We must put in mind that being inlove and feeling sorry are another two different things. Wouldn't you be more sorry holding on to that person even if the feelings are gone? Wouldn't letting go be a better idea?
I realized that sometimes good things come to an end. And putting an end to a thing might be just the good decision you can make, not for anybody else, but for yourself. An end to something good might be the start of something better.

I realized that being single doesn't mean being unloved. It simply means you are gearing up for something that will come to you at the right time. It might even be with the same person you loved before, just this time, it's the right time, and things will be better because you know you've grown - to be more mature, more responsible. And when that time comes, you know you are ready for it. You know you deserve it. You know it's for you.

I realized that nobody can make you happier but yourself. You are in charge of your own happiness. You do not need a partner on valentine's day. And yes, it's okay to be single on valentine's day. <3
“It hurts to let go. Sometimes it seems the harder you try to hold on to something or someone the more it wants to get away. You feel like some kind of criminal for having felt, for having wanted. For having wanted to be wanted. It confuses you, because you think that your feelings were wrong and it makes you feel so small because it's so hard to keep it inside when you let it out and it doesn't come back. You're left so alone that you can't explain. Damn, there's nothing like that, is there? I've been there and you have too. You're nodding your head.”
Henry Rollins, The Portable Henry Rollins

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Years Resolution: What's on Your List?

Year 2013 is almost over. And it's that time of the year when people set aside their Christmas wish list and make another list -- New Year's Resolution.
These are some common items found on people's Resolution list:
5- Quit bad habits (smoking, etc.)
4- Manage debt.
3- Take a trip, or travel.
2- Save money.
And of course, the bestseller: No.1 - Lose weight (Get fit).
Mine will just be mainly about these things: Stay healthy, be thankful all the time, and take chances. Does that sound good?

My painted face greeting you all a

I've been away from blogging for more than a month and this post is actually my last for this year. I thank the Lord God for all the blessings I received this year, as well as the trials and challenges I've had. I'm hoping for a busier me on 2014. Busier but happier. *winks* Cheers to more years of blogging, reading, editing, following and picture-taking sweeties! 2014, we are ready for you! <3

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

10/15 Earthquake Tragedy: Bohol's Greatest Nightmare

As much as I would want my blog to just have "good vibes" and happy posts, I could barely stand the thought of not writing anything about what happened yesterday, October 15th -- when a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit the place where I grew up, the beautiful Bohol.
I am not in Bohol right now. Good thing, because I was spared from the earthquake incident. But I am not feeling any better because my family is there. Plus, my relatives and friends. And Bohol is more than home to me.
Here are some of the heartbreaking photos I've seen on Facebook & Instagram: (I don't own any of these)
These are some of the severely damaged churches in Bohol.
You can see here the "before" and "after" photos of the old churches.
You see, our province's pride is our culture and heritage. The Boholano people have done such a great job in preserving that -- the churches you can see above are centuries old. They were taken good care of, and stood there for so many years. Generations and generations of families came and went in there to pray and hear masses, but just yesterday, that pride was taken away by the earthquake. :(
The photos here were uploaded by netizens on Facebook, and shared by my FB friends. I do not own any of these. I just put them together to show you a picture of how the earthquake affected the lives of the Boholanos.

1st photo leftmost: Road cracks in Loboc
2nd photo leftmost: The Abatan bridge submerged into the water. This is the bridge from Cortes-Maribojoc.
3rd photo leftmost (bottom): Total wreckage of the Tubigon church arch, also showing damages to Tubigon parish church behind.
1st photo center: Moaong bridge collapsed. A bridge in Loon, Bohol. This is where you pass through from Calape going to Loon proper.
2nd photo center: Destroyed road at Getafe, Bohol
3rd photo center: Road cracks in Baclayon
1st photo rightmost: Holy Name University main campus
2nd photo rightmost: Chocolate hills viewing deck
3rd photo rightmost: Chocolate Hills :(
If you are reading this, I am asking you to please help us in praying for our dear province, Bohol, as well as its neighboring islands. As of writing, aftershocks are still experienced every now and then. Prayers are powerful. Say a little prayer for the victims of this calamity. Thank you. Take care everyone! <3