June Goals Check In

I’m feeling so accomplished so far this month. Not necessarily work related, but I’ve hit some personal goals that have really improved my motivation all around. It’s been a good month! Here’s an update on my 5 goals for June:
  1. Backyard Patio: If you follow me on IG then you know that Charlie and I finished a big backyard project and we finished it this week! OMG, this has been such a burden for us and I’m SO happy that we’ve finally finished it! Truth be told we have so much work in the back yard to still do but this was a big one for us. I’ll be posting a before and after as well as a how-to next month. This was a big one for me. I feel so accomplished. I’m excited to use our back yard, have BBQ’s, have dinner out there, even work out there! It’s slowly but surely turning into the space I’ve always dreamed it could be!

  2. Go to church: To be truthful church is really important to me and I’m disappointed in myself that I still haven’t gone. But, in hindsight I’ve been watching Pastor Steven Furtick’s YouTube Channel and watching Elevation Church’s sermons every week. Not to mention my daily devotionals and podcasts. But there’s just something special about physical church. I’m glad I’m still making an effort to hear the Word, but I’m yearning for my church community. There’s just something about being in church, in person.
  3. Exercise: I’ve put together a fitness plan people! This was a big hurdle for me to overcome (more mentally than anything else). I haven’t exercised at all this year. Shame shame shame on me. We don’t have a budget for a lot of things we used to so I’ve had to cut down on our monthly expenses, our gym membership was one of them. I have my home workout planned out. I started yesterday and it felt good to get my heart pumping a bit again. Now it’s time to keep it going!
  4. Keep plants alive: So far my plant babies are doing well! Charlie named them Romeo and Juliet. I’m trying not to obsess over them too much, I might kill them. I’m also trying not to forget I have them, I might kill them. Lol! Stay tuned on my IG to see how they’re doing.

    Please don’t die, Plants!
  5. Be creative: I need to be better about this. I think i’m going to create a doodles stack in Procreate so get me to start playing with the app more and to let my creative juices flowing.
On the work end of things, it has been progressing nicely which is why I didn’t really make it part of my goals for this month.
After my 30 day Blogging Challenge I decided to write Monday-Friday while posting new content Monday/Wednesday/Friday every week onto my blog. Blogging has turned into something I’m very passionate about and I feel that my voice is starting to develop the more I write consistently. Ninong’s has also been steadily growing and we’re starting to get a good idea of how much grocery and supplies we need every week. Things could be better, still at a net loss and paying back loans from the renovation but we’re doing ok. We’re getting by and I’m grateful for that.
I’m also starting to settle into my productivity routine. I think I’ve found a system that works for me which I’ll be sharing soon. I still have a little bit of tweaking to do but I’ll probably be sharing my workflow/productivity tools for personal and professional use some time next month. Stay tuned for that!

FilAm Entrepreneur Luncheon

I don’t know if you remember, but I had lunch with a few fellow Filipino entrepreneurs that I met from the CSUN Restauranteur Panel. It was awesome to be able to sit and talk shop with people that got me. You feel me? This is exactly why community over competition is something I live by. Doing this on your own is impossible. But that’s for another day. Anyway our first lunch was a Tatang’s in North Hollywood and there were 4 of us.
Rayson (Eat Play Move LA), Kristine (Creme Caramel LA), Caroline (Caroline Adobo), and Me at Tatang Noho
Kristine of Creme Caramel LA was gracious enough to organize another lunch and this time there were 9 of us! Some of us had met previously, but some of us hadn’t met yet. But we all “knew of” each other. It’s really great to finally put that Instagram handle to a real name and a face! 😆 
We had lunch at the newly opened Paramount Coffee Project at the Row in Downtown LA. It’s owned by a fellow Filipino-American entrepreneur and executive chef Ria Barbosa. It was so great to meet more fellow entrepreneurs, just talk about anything, and not feel in competition with anyone. I’m excited for this community of people that is coming together. Plus, check out that view!
Rayson (Eat Play Move LA), Justin (Benaddictz), Me, Mo (Kindness and Mischief), Kristine and Sean (Creme Caramel LA), Jella (Honey My Heart), Chiho (Tatang), Caroline (Caroline Adobo), and Anna Marie (SIPA/AM Wellness)
Til the next one!

When Someone Makes an Impact – Anthony Bourdain

I get shaken every time I get reminded of the mental issues that are plaguing our world. Whether it’s you, someone you know, or not, the issues of depression, suicide, and mental illness are difficult things to hear and talk about. There are people out there, hurting, feeling alone, and hopeless. There are an average of 123 suicides per day in the US, according to the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention. And in just a matter of days, 2 individuals have reminded us that even wealth, affluence, adventure, and inspiration can’t hide from the dark shadows. My heart is overcome with sadness.
You know how there are people that you just want to have the pleasure of meeting in your lifetime? Someone you look up to, admire, inspires you. Someone that you know is the real deal, is just so unapologetically themselves. I have a long list of people that I hope to meet one day. Some have passed away and some are still living — Anthony Bourdain was one of those people on my list.
Photo: Getty Images
I respect the man; for his brutal honestly, his contribution to the food industry, his “don’t give a shit imma do me” attitude, his approach on other cultures, and the way he inspired us to approach other cultures with an open mind instead of a judgemental one. He appreciated food in a way that a lot of people don’t. He loved finer foods as well as simple home style cooking.He understood that food was much more to all of us.
I don’t know him. Heck, I don’t even know someone that knows him. But one of my life goals was to meet Anthony Bourdain one day and have him taste one of our dishes. He was a hero for us food underdogs. He gave us hope that there are people out there that were outside of our own culture that could appreciate what we had to offer. Even us, a small little family restaurant. It’s almost like he made the “mom and pop shops” cool. The idea of him walking into our little business like you see on his show. Sitting down and eating at one of our tables. I knew it probably would never happen, but there was a glimmer of hope that it could. That little glimmer was enough to make it possible. Until last Friday when the news hit.
I was saddened by the news that day, but even to this day I’m still effected by it in a way that I didn’t think it would.  I thought it would pass. I know I’ve never met him, I guess I just admired him so much and saw in him things I wish I had the courage to be. I wish I could’ve sat down with him over a plate of sisig and a beer and just talk about life.
He was himself. He wasn’t afraid to tell it like it is. We thought that he was living a life that so many of us wanted. The ability to travel the world, experience new things and cultures, and eat great food while getting paid for it! But there were obviously things that us fans didn’t see. Maybe he felt alone during his travels. Maybe it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Maybe there were demons that were hard for him to battle. Maybe there’s more to it than the media wants us to know. I don’t know. None of us will ever truly know how he felt, what he saw, and what really happened.
What I do know is how he inspired me. He inspired me then, and he inspires me now. He inspires me to embrace the road that I’m traveling – the good and the bad. He inspires me to be honest with myself – brutally honest. He inspires me to tell my story and not be afraid of being judged. He inspires me to be myself and never be tempted to hide who I am. Most of all, he inspires me to embrace other cultures, show them respect and love because you never know the battle that they might be fighting.
Rest In Peace, Mr. Bourdain. Us fans are shaken as we thought there was so much more that we could learn from you.  Thank you for everything you’ve done for our industry, world, and culture.