Thursday, June 30, 2011

Harvest the best of life's experiences.

   The happiest people don't have the best of everything.

          They just make the best of everything.

           LIVE simply.

        SPEAK kindly.

                   CARE deeply.

                                                    LOVE generously.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Photography | Xian Garvida
Styling | Ash Castro
Model | Jeff Rejuso

Sharing you one of my favorite sets in my folio...

Glorify each day you are given.

Thank you Lord for a very tiring yet a fruitful day for me. And thank you for reminding me that with the little knowledge that I have, I can do as much all for the greater glory of God!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

In Moments of Solitude and Loneliness

Article | Rose Windale (
Photography | Xian Garvida
Hair and Make-up | Dino Lazaro
Model | Jaynny Lao
Location | Bangui Windmills Farm

Are being in solitude and being lonely the same? When you say “I need some time alone”, what is it that you feel? Is it because you are experiencing dejection and loneliness? Loneliness is actually a state of aching, inner emptiness. Yes, being lonely can be painful. You feel alone and that there seems to be just nobody with you.

Being alone is different from being lonely, although they may go together. When you say “I am alone”, it means you’re experiencing physical separation. It has often been said that you can be alone and yet not feel lonely. The sad thing is when in your aloneness, you feel loneliness, too. 

In your loneliness, you feel a spiritual, emotional and psychological separation from the rest. As you can imagine, this is more painful. Inward, you are empty and aching. You reach out for somebody, yet nobody is there. You cry out for company, but it’s beyond your control- you can’t have it.

Truly, such a circumstance can drive you out of your wits. We, as humans, are social beings. It is not only about the need to interact, but to connect. We need the warm and tender company of a friend or a partner, or family. Company which understands and accepts us the way we are.  

Where we need not fear rejection despite showing our true colors. In the company of somebody you trust, you can experience the joy of letting be, of being yourself. Indeed, when you are blessed with such, you can enjoy happiness in the real sense. Happiness can be as simple as that- having a true friend or a loving partner.

Or having a warm and loving home. With such, you may even forget the need for extravagant material possessions. It’s because what maters most is unseen. It’s in the heart- connection with others, and fulfillment. But sometimes, people just can’t help being lonely. Circumstances may have been unkind and inauspicious situations happen.

Loneliness can then start creeping in, and worse, gnawing us inside. And so we feel less as persons. We feel worthless and unloved and uncared for. When this happens, what should you do- is it the end of the world? It doesn’t have to be. When your dejection is so compelling, you need a change of attitude.

Shift your perspective and turn loneliness into solitude. In solitude, you get to appreciate the company of yourself- you become your own best friend. Being in solitude also means being alone, but there is a different essence. In your aloneness, you feel inner fulfillment. You get to process your thoughts and emotions.

Sure you may be in pain, but you can choose to see the lessons from that pain. In moments of solitude, you can nourish your spirit. Solitary as you are, you now have time and space for growth. In the darkness of loneliness, light up the candle of solitude. And see what is in your heart.

Gather your strength and your senses, and strive to be a better, stronger person. You see, loneliness is not the end of the world if you turn it into solitude. Remember, in your solitude, you are by yourself, yet you are not alone. There is always somebody who will always be with you.

Find out who it is - in your solitude.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Explore each problem with the intent of improving the situation.

Been away in the blogosphere for almost a week 'cause I was busy practicing the participants for the quartet competition. I am so happy that they get better each day. I hope they will be able to make it.

Going back to my ABC of Spirituality.
Most of us tend to meddle with other people's business or concern that instead of improving the situation, we end up making it worse. Parang Face to Face lang sa TV5. Sabi nga, kung may problema, harapin mo face to face. Toinks! Still, I don't believe in the purpose of the program. You can not just let two arguing parties settle their differences at one sitting. What I believe is that healing takes time. It is a long process of soul searching. It takes courage and even sacrifice.

We may have diverse ways in exploring the problem but the most important thing is to find clear solutions. So the next time that we attempt to delve into something, think twice and make sure that we really are into making things better and not just like the sawsaweros and sawsaweras in the TV program who make both parties hate each other even more.
That's all folks!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I am my HAIR!

Inspired with Gaga's HAIR, I thought of making a video out of it featuring the girls of G-Force photographed by me for their annual dance workshop project.
Hope you enjoy watching the hair-full video...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Akihiro Sato

While browsing through my old files and listening to Gaga's 'Hair', I came across my photo set of Akihiro Sato and thought of re-posting it here. The photo shoot took place in Pampanga when Aki was just starting his career in the Philippines and I was also starting to enjoy photography. Thanks to my ex-best friend for allowing me to take photos of Aki during the shoot.

Coming soon: HAIR

Song of the Day: Jack Sparrow

I first bumped into this song while browsing a blog that I just recently followed. The beat is so cool and I just love the humor in the song. I lost count already how many times I played it since this morning.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Decide to be happy.





















     Having my own Jollibee TLC after today's work (can't remember when was the last time I ate one or even a burger at that);
     Having practiced two songs today from our repertoire (my choir is getting better every time we practice);
     Having spent more time with myself and God (had a Bible study this morning);
     Having someone appreciate the same music you love listening to. (someone asked me to copy my Il Divo songs to her playlist)

It could have been a bad day (someone was bugging me at the office but I totally ignored him) but I decided to be happy. I hope you did the same thing today...

Just a coincidence, while having a break, a friend showed me a forwarded text from his friend:

     Everyday is a chance to be happy - it's our choice how to be.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Commit yourself to daily discoveries of something new and uplifting.

Maam Slyvia: Uy gayyem, I have something for you...
Kiko: Hala maam, ang cute naman nito! How sweet of you!
Maam Slyvia: Naisip kasi kita, ang dami mo ng hirap sa pagtuturo sa amin ng kanta.
Kiko: Naku maam, wala 'yun. Basta makakatulong ako, why not share! It's a God-given talent after all.
Maam Sylvia: At alam ko kasing mahilig ka sa notes, kaya iyan ang napili ko. 
Sumakay pa yan ng eroplano ha...
Kiko: Si maam alam na alam na hilig ko ang notes, hehe Kahit sa kalesa pa sumakay yan maam, aprub na aprub!
(Then enter Maam Sheila)
Maam Sheila: Uy Xian, ang cute naman niyan!
Kiko: Kaya nga maam eh, na-touch naman ako kay Maam Syl...
Maam Sheila: Ako nga eh, ang dami ko ng utang sa'yo. Di pa kita niregaluhan nung Christmas...

It was a very light conversation but I just realized that in our place where animosity, pride and malice are the norms, there are some people who still know how to appreciate the little things you are doing for them. 

Maam Slyvia: Isama mo na rin itong mga santol para kumpleto...

Forget the hate. I am here to share whatever I have so long as I can. I don't care if they get intimidated. I just hope they learn to understand that everyone was given their opportunity and this is my time to shine! Chos!

Kiko: Maam, practice na tayo...

Isang himig ang aking narinig, pag-ibig ang hatid sa bawat puso at isip...

And oh, by the way I've discovered that I am beginning to enjoy writing and I'm loving it!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Brave the future with an open and positive attitude.

So here is the second installment in my attempt to complete the ABC of Spirituality.

The day after we submitted by boss' accomplishment report, the result of his promotional examinations was released and it turned out that he is at the top 16 out of 101 who took the exam belonging to the same rank. The result of the exam will form part of the over-all rating. The other criteria  include work-related training, previous performance rating, awards and commendations and time-in-grade. He was so happy about it and then he suddenly asked if I am also praying for him, I said "but of course, sir!" Little does he know that I will be so proud of him if he gets promoted and awarded for his efforts because I know that it's already long overdue for him considering his accomplishments as our current boss and on his previous assignments. And I will be even prouder if our unit will also win the award. Then I said, "Sir, if I may ask, do you believe that we are going to make it?" He said in reply, "I do not want to assume, let's just pray adn hope." Then he directed my attention to a decor with a verse in the Bible that's hanging on the wall. It says...

Be that as it may, my boss never runs out of determination in going farther and further just to prove himself. He'seven willing to be assigned here for the next three years away from his family because no matter what, he will continue to succeed even going beyond his regular duties in carrying out the mission and vision of the bureau.

Tomorrow, my boss will be going home to be with his family and spend more time with God. I hope and pray when he gets back after seven days, he will be receiving good news!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Approach each day with an appreciation of being alive.

Today, I will try to start  blogging about the ABC of Spirituality. It's a good timing because as I open my Yahoo! account, a photo of a smiling Gabrielle Giffords of the US Congress suddenly appeared in the Yahoo! News. Her office posted two clear photos of a smiling Giffords posing outside her Houston rehabilitation hospital last month, just five months after she was shot and critically wounded at a congressional event in Tucson, Arizona.
Here is the story of her attempted assassination and her eventual recovery taken from Wikipedia:

On January 8, 2011, Giffords was shot in the head outside a Safeway grocery store in Casas Adobes, Arizona, a suburban area northwest of Tucson, during her first "Congress on Your Corner" gathering of the year. A man ran up to the crowd and began firing, hitting nineteen people of whom six died; a twentieth person was injured at the scene, but not by gunfire.

The suspect, identified as Jared Lee Loughner, was detained by bystanders until he was taken into police custody. Federal officials charged Loughner on the next day with killing federal government employees, attempting to assassinate a member of Congress, and attempting to kill federal employees. Giffords's intern, Daniel Hernandez Jr., provided first aid assistance to her immediately after she was wounded and is credited with saving her life. She was promptly evacuated to the University Medical Center of Tucson in critical condition, though she was still conscious and "following commands" at the time.

On the same day, doctors performed emergency surgery to extract skull fragments and a small amount of necrotic tissue from her brain. The bullet had passed through Giffords's head without crossing the midline of the brain, where the most critical injuries typically result. Part of her skull was removed to avoid further damage to the brain from pressure caused by swelling. Civilian doctors who first treated Giffords said the bullet had entered the back of her head and exited through the front of her skull, but experienced military physicians later concluded that it had traveled in the opposite direction. Upon receiving a call from a staffer about Giffords's injury, husband Mark E. Kelly and his daughters flew in a friend's aircraft directly from Houston to Tucson.

Giffords initially was placed in a medically-induced coma to allow her brain to rest. She was able to respond to simple commands when periodically awoken, but was unable to speak as she was on a ventilatorNancy Pelosi said Giffords's husband Mark Kelly acknowledged that there is a "rough road ahead" for his wife's recovery, but was encouraged by her responsiveness, which included the ability to signal with her hand and move both arms. U.S. Army neurologist Geoffrey Ling of the Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, Maryland, was sent to Tucson to consult on Giffords's condition. Ling stated, "Her prognosis for maintaining the function that she has is very good. It's over 50 percent." On January 11, neurosurgeon G. Michael Lemole Jr. said that Giffords's sedation had been reduced and that she could breathe on her own. On January 12, President Barack Obama visited Giffords at the medical center and publicly stated in an evening memorial ceremony that she had "opened her eyes for the first time" that day. Shortly after the shootings, some questions were raised by the media as to whether Giffords could be removed from office under a state law that allows a public office to be declared vacant if the officeholder is absent for three months, but a spokesperson for the Arizona secretary of state said the statute "doesn't apply to federal offices" and is, therefore, not relevant.

As Giffords's status improved, she began simple physical therapy, including sitting up with the assistance of hospital staff and moving her legs upon command. On January 15, surgeons performed a tracheotomy, replacing the ventilator tube with a smaller one inserted through Giffords's throat to assist independent breathing. Ophthalmologist Lynn Polonski surgically repaired Giffords's eye socket, with additional reconstructive surgery to follow. Giffords's condition was upgraded to "serious" on January 17, and to "good" on January 25. She was transferred on January 21 to the Memorial Hermann Medical Center in HoustonTexas, where she subsequently moved to the center's Institute for Rehabilitation and Research (TIRR) to undergo a program of physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Medical experts' initial assessment in January was that Giffords's recovery could take from several months to more than one year. Upon her arrival in Houston, her doctors were optimistic, saying she has "great rehabilitation potential".

In late April 2011, Giffords' doctors reported that her physical, cognitive, and language production abilities had improved significantly, placing her in the top 5 percent of patients recovering from similar injuries. She was walking under supervision with perfect control of her left arm and leg, and able to write with her left hand. She was able to read and understand, and spoke in short phrases. With longer efforts, she was able to produce more complex sentences.

From early in her recovery, Giffords's husband had expressed confidence that she would be able to travel to Cape Canaveral, Florida, to witness the launch of his final Space Shuttle mission, STS-134, which was originally scheduled for April 2011. On April 25, Giffords' doctors gave her medical clearance to travel to Florida for the launch, originally scheduled for April 29, and she went to Florida where she was to watch from a private family area, without any public appearance or photography. The launch of STS-134 was delayed due to mechanical problems, and Giffords returned to Houston after meeting with President Obama, who had also planned to see the launch, with his family, at Kennedy Space Center (KSC). After continuing her rehabilitation therapy in Houston, Giffords returned to KSC for her husband's launch on May 16, 2011. Kelly wore his wife's wedding ring into space, which she had exchanged for his.

Giffords underwent surgery on May 18, 2011 to replace part of her skull that had been removed in January to permit her brain to swell after the gunshot to her head. Surgeons replaced the bone, using tiny screws, with piece of molded hard plastic; they expect that her skull will eventually fuse with the plastic’s porous material. Giffords no longer needs to wear the helmet that she had been wearing to protect her brain from further injury. On June 9, 2011, Giffords' aide, Pia Carusone, told the press that the Congresswoman continues to make progress in her therapy. As of that date, while Giffords' comprehension appeared to be "close to normal, if not normal", she is not yet using complete sentences. On June 12, two photos of Giffords taken on May 17 were released, the first since the shooting.

Indeed, her story is a living testament of hope, courage, will and determination. In each day that I wake up and open my eyes is an everyday thanksgiving for the goodness of the Lord. I hope everyone of us knows how to appreciate the beauty of life that we have and make each day a struggle to perfection.
Have a great day everyone!

Sunday, June 12, 2011


After a very tiring day, well at least mentally except that while I am writing this blog, I feel like I am physically exhausted as well, I am finally done with the write-up and documentation for my boss' accomplishment report. This is in addition to the report I submitted earlier to the regional office which is a quarterly compliance. This time, according to my boss, the accomplishment report I just made will be the basis for the award that will be given in time for the bureau's anniversary in which he and our unit are both nominees, meaning this is on a national level already because technically, we are our region's official nominee. Well I just hope that I did my best in that report, or did I? Suddenly I felt that part of the burden is on me already because it will make or break my boss' dream of repeating the past in which he was already a grand slam awardee in the same categories.

I just hope that everything will be according to His plan. The Bible teaches us that let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Gal 6:9) At the moment, I do not know if this is already the proper time for my boss to reap the harvest of all the good things he has done in fulfilling the mission of the bureau. I may have to wait until the end of this month for the answer.

For now, I am rather happy for finally accomplishing another task.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

What a Wonderful World(?)

I am almost done with the report of my boss due for submission tomorrow but I was lacking some photos so I asked my kumpadre earlier to take some additional photos of recent facility developments. While he was on top of the roof of the admin building, he was taking a photo but at a different direction so I assumed that it must be something else other than the newly constructed facilities. When he came down, he showed me a photo of the sunset...

Amigo: Ang ganda talaga ng mundo noh?
Kiko: Patingin nga?
(After looking at the photo)
Kiko: Galing ng pagkakuha mo ah!
Amigo: Kaya lang nakatago tayo sa kagandahan nito...
Kiko: Ah okay.

My friend's observation of the sunset is rather positive unlike most of us who may think otherwise. In spite of his present situation, he can still appreciate the beauty of creation. Nevertheless, he realizes that no matter how wonderful the world is, him including myself and the others, are still deprived of it.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

It's been a while...

It has been a while since I posted something here. I have always wanted to regularly maintain this blog when I created it but for some unavoidable circumstances, I was not able to do so. I was very busy attending to the needs and demands of my boss for the past months that I didn't even have the time to read the blogs of others nor open the this site even for just a second. At last, I can say that I have all the time now or I must say that I will make sure to devote time for a personal space, again.

Sometimes, we do set aside things in life like simple pleasures, some not-so-significant friends or even our dreams but that doesn't mean that we totally forget them or erased them in our system. We maybe victims of our own pursuit of too much self-gratification. And we need to face the consequences of our actions.

Yet we are continuously learning in making each day better than yesterday. It's hard but it is worth trying in order for us to have that freedom again to pursue our dreams and aspirations in life, at least at a later time.

But for the mean time, I will need to embrace LIFE as it is.

Until then...