What I’ve Been Up To in Manila | Life Lately

I’m *still* thriving! Says me who’s writing this while packing for Malaysia (we leave tomorrow at midnight) and preparing mentally for a sea of events happening once I get back.

It’s so overrated for me to say that I’ve been busy since I got back from Berlin, but it’s true. In one of those *busy weeks*, I decided to film A Week in My Life, because why the hell not? Coincidentally, that week I had a lot of work, got sick, basically all of *the* things. Well, such is life. I get by and that’s what matters!

[watch the video below]

In work-related things, I am honored to be part of Keds’ Ladies Unite campaign for Women’s Equality Day last August. I got to work on this campaign (*ahem* first time to model) with theater actress Gab Pangilinan (I watched El Bimbo a week before we met at the shoot, lol coincidence) and a long-time friend who is an amazing musician, Reese Lansangan.

I edited our photos from the shoot~ (used Procreate)

You can check out our video here.

We also had a luncheon a week after the shoot, wearing our #LadiesUnite shoes. I’m not very open to collaborating with brands BUT I was more than game to work with Keds because I strongly believe in equality—especially for women. Growing up in the art industry was admittedly a struggle I had to deal with, and all these years I didn’t know that it was that way (until I realized it in latter years).

Also, let’s be real you guys—I bought my first pair of Keds (using my own money!) in high school. I’ve always loved the brand. I mean, I love my Nikes, but for casual wear, Keds is always top of the line. Not to mention I have two pairs of Rifle Paper Co x Keds shoes!

You can read up on some of the articles we were interviewed for below:

  • Wonder: Reese Lansangan, Abbey Sy and Gabriela Pangilinan Talk “Empowered Women Empower Women” with Keds [click here] This article focused on our beginnings, our struggles growing up as creatives and how to proved our younger selves wrong.
  • Metro.Style: Abbey Sy, Gabriela Pangilinan, Reese Lansangan On Being An Empowered Woman [click here] This article centered on the innerworks of the respective industries we were in, what it means to be empowered, and how we use social media as a platform to inspire others in our own way.

My weekends didn’t feel so chill. Also haven’t ran in weeks :(( But it was okay—I got to sneak some time with friends and family and just *not* being in my room 24/7 (which is where I am most of the time now). My sister and I went to a bazaar and had lunch at The Grid. But the highlight was this box of Mo Cookies for to-go. We rarely go to Makati so imagine this rare occasion, lol.

I rushed to a meeting after that. But of course!

CH & I are working like crazy to make it in time for our ~PaperCon content~. PaperContent? Lol. Our two organizers focus on the operations while we do the chunk of promotional materials and social media, so we always end up co-working and frying our brains at the end of the day. Add to that our one-woman team shop woes and brainstorm sessions. I’ll admit though, it is very fun! I always enjoy bouncing off ideas with someone who also thinks similarly as me. 🙂

In other news, I think we both agreed this morning that if PaperCon happens again next year, we might need to hire a team for the creative work. She did the website + posters and I work on all the socials (and also model them, because #budgetconstraints lol) for this year, and it’s A LOT (we both run our respective businesses so you can imagine the craziness). We’ll see!

From my previous post, you’d know I went to Switzerland for a quick work trip. I really, really wanted to extend but my schedule is just not cooperating. But anyway, here’s a pretty view of the Alps from my window seat on the way back to Manila, and here’s a photo of me actually looking like I slept well on my first day even if I was running on three cups of coffee before arriving in Geneva, lol.

The day after I arrived home, I had a scheduled signing at Manila International Book Fair. I felt guilty I wasn’t able to take part last year (when my new book was released—because I had already flown to NY then) so I made sure to see my readers this year.

What caught me off-guard though was shopping for pens. LOTS of them. At a book fair? You betcha.

I got two pen sets (Zebra Sarasa and Pilot G-2, both my faves), stuff from King Jim (including Kitta tapes) and a few more *essentials*. I’m going to Japan this December and I am preparing my wallet omg~

In YouTube-related news, I have reached 13.1K subs!!! Thanks so much. I have also been able to work with sponsors so yay for $$$! I spent so much on shop capital this year + my Berlin residency so I really have to earn my $$$ back.

My assistant (and fellow stationery addict and good friend) Sophie and I commuted to Divisoria last week. It was SO FUN (and also tiring)! I live near the LRT2 and I didn’t realize how accessible it was (especially if you’re going to Manila). We’re working on a Journaling Under $10 series for my channel and so far, we’ve been to 6 shops. Now comes the part where I actually use these tools for journaling. We’re scheduled to film tomorrow before we fly (talk about #productivity lol). I’m so excited for this and I hope you all will like it too.

Most people think journaling is so expensive and it’s a costly hobby. I beg to differ—when I started journaling at 13, I just needed to be resourceful and used what I had (there were no stationery stores back then). So it’s no surprise that (of course) we were able to find affordable materials that are journaling-friendly.

Anyway, I’m geeking out.

In tech-related news, first off, I just wanted to share that I ended up wearing an outfit inspired by Steve Jobs (I’m a big fan of Apple, obvs) and I just had to post this side-by-side comparison.

Reading up articles on how successful people only wear “uniforms” that they repeat for work inspired me to dress simpler. Nowadays, I always reach for black or white tops, plain-colored shirts, and jeans. That’s it. I save the fancy schmancy stuff for events and workshops, so either way I get to play around with my closet.

It’s funny, because a few years ago I have been so uncomfortable with my fashion sense, and now I really think I’ve reached the point where the simpler my outfit is, the lesser decisions I have to make, and the more professional I look. Then it’s a win-win-win.

OK relating back to tech, I recently watched Inside Bill’s Brain, a three-part documentary series on Netflix about Bill Gates’ life and I was hooked. I finished all the episodes in one night, lol. He’s quite a genius, and I admire his intelligence, discipline and persistence. Definitely a must-watch!

Last week I had this grudge over social media, specifically Instagram and how the metrics affects my perception of the Internet and the totality of my existence on the www. So I deleted my app, ended up cleaning my room (especially the messy shipping area), rearranged my shelf (added my baby photo and first newspaper feature), blasted Lady Gaga, Fergie and Beyonce on my headphones, and did A LOT of packing work.

At the end of the day I was just literally staring in space.

I mean, these are things I never show on social media. And I don’t mind. Overall this job isn’t 100% glamorous anyway, no matter how you put it. But for me, the feeling of accomplishing tasks drives me to move forward and pat myself on the back, regardless of whether it’s published online or not.

But anyway, I had to redownload the app because who am I kidding? I can’t NOT be on Instagram. But now I’m learning that my blog is STILL more important than social media. So here’s to updating here more often. In a place where I feel most like myself. 🙂

Okay, back to work. More updates soon! Hope the Libra season is treating you well~


Recommended Posts