It’s a Wrap, November!

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I asked, “How is November almost over?” with a pang of sadness in my head this week. With November being my birth month, and arguably the best month (next to December, of course), it’s bittersweet to see the days go by quickly.

I absolutely love this time of the year not only because the temperature drops but because it feels so much more festive as most people prepare for the holidays. Here in the US, November is almost always associated to Thanksgiving, hence it is dubbed as the National Gratitude Month. While we’re at it, how about I throw in a few more things I’m grateful for this Thanksgiving season:

Thirty-one and still making faces 🤷🏻‍♀️ Grainy photo (and silly face) aside, today has been nothing short of amazing! I welcomed this morning with a smile on my face; grateful for another waking day. Something incredible happened at church today… For the first time since @rolandroan and I got married, we were invited to offer the bread and wine during mass, and the experience resonated with me in more ways than one: (1) here in Portland at St. Michael the Archangel, the leader of all angels; (2) today, of all days and people, we played a special role in the Eucharistic celebration. That was no mere coincidence. You best believe I fought back tears the entire service. In my head, I kept thinking: 'if that isn't any indication that even greater things are in store for us (today and in the future), then I don't know what is.' Today truly trumps all other birthday celebrations I’ve had (yet).🦋 — Anyway, thank you to all your birthday wishes! You made my heart swell with happiness.💗 #birthjaeweekend2017

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Thirty-one and still making faces 🤷🏻‍♀️

Celebrating My Birthday Weekend in Portland, OR

Roan and I flew out to Portland, Oregon for my birthday weekend celebration, which I conveniently tagged as #birthjaeweekend2017 on Instagram. Without giving out too much details on our trip, both Roan and I agreed that traveling to Portland had been our most adventurous out-of-town trip to date. I hope to talk more about it soon as I plan to simultaneously write about my birthday weekend in Denver, Colorado last year (I know—already working on them!).

In the meantime, have you caught up with details on where we stayed at in Portland? IT. WAS. EPIC.

Pao and Angel in San Diego 2017
Newlywed College Friends from Manila + Sleepover

I think I’d get a collective nod when I say that returning from a week-long vacation is always tough. Nothing is more daunting than unpacking and washing a pile of dirty laundry almost as soon as you got home, but you do what you have to (on top of a million other things) because you also agreed to have friends over to your place the same weekend.

Our newlywed college friends, Pao and Angel, visited from Manila to celebrate both Pao’s birthday and their honeymoon here in the US. We don’t see a lot of friends from back home often (other than Ron and Jan), so we very much looked forward to having them over in San Diego for one weekend. I’ve wholeheartedly embraced living here, so taking both first-time and returning friends and family around town is a task I’ll gladly accept at any given day. The easiest approach to this is to take them to places Roan and I have been (and recommend) or where we usually hang out on weekends.

Catching up on each other’s lives over drinking a few beers (for the boys), some chips, and a whole lot of laughter until midnight makes for an amazing reunion. Ah, good times.

Taking Photos of Trees at the Yosemite National Park

Thanksgiving Up in the Mountains

Last year, for the first time ever, Roan and I went away for Thanksgiving weekend, and spent it up in the mountains. We returned to The Sierra for Thanksgiving this year, and it was so much different from the last time we were there, yet still a lovely experience.


Anyway, I hope you had just as much fun month of November as we have!
Meanwhile, I’ll be taking the rest of the holiday vibes in while it lasts!


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  • Heya are using WordPress for your site platform?
    I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and set up my own. Do you require any coding knowledge to make your own blog?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

    • Yes, I’m on WordPress (self-hosted). You don’t, but it would be a great skill to have, so you’re able to personalize some sections on your blog.

    • We may have missed all the festive gathering during Thanksgiving, but it wasn’t so bad spending it up in the mountains. Oh, I hope you make it out there someday soon! It’s beautiful up there plus so easy to get around the city!

  • Ahh sounds like November was an awesome month for you. The pictures from Portland were beautiful, it’s a city that I’ve always really wanted to visit but I haven’t made it that far west yet! It’s sweet that your friends got to visit you, it’s definitely tough not being able to see friends as often as you’d like. December is also my favorite month, but that’s because my birthday is in December so I’m biased 😛

    • I had an amazing month-long birthday celebration! Thank you, Kasi! I think you’ll enjoy it there when you visit! It’s the first time Roan has met my friend’s wife, but we all got along just fine! I loved hearing stories from our friends back home; made me feel like I haven’t missed out on much. Oh! When’s your birthday? I love December with all the holiday vibe, so it must feel amazing!

  • I’m still shook by the fact that it’s already December. This year went by too fast, to be honest. Anyways, are you and Roan making it a tradition to go outdoors for Thanksgiving now? That photo of you two is adorable 🙂

    • I know, right?! Yes, we are! We might go somewhere else next Thanksgiving, but if we end up going back to The Sierra, I’ll hit you up! I know you’re moving up north very soon! Oh, and thank you!

  • Omg I can’t believe November is almost over either! I am still in shock! And I totally love all your photos of Yosemite on Instagram! It must’ve been so great to see your newlywed friends! Happy belated birthday! <3

    • TOMORROW IS DECEMBER. I REPEAT. THIS IS NOT A DRILL. TOMORROW IS DECEMBER! panic ensues Yes, it was nice to have them over even for a quick visit! Aww thank you, Kim! And I love all your photos from your recent trip to Scotland, too!

    • They’ve probably gone back to Manila by now, but they spent about a month here in the US! Two weeks in SoCal, and another two in NorCal! Man, 2017 is almost over!