Thursday, February 28, 2013





You'll never know how a loss feels like until you experience having lost something yourself. That is a fact. What most people don't realize is, every waking minute is a paradox--a lost time and a gained opportunity. What we make out of the difference between the two is all in our hands. Whether we even make a difference, is ours as well.

I was asked once, what is your saddest memory, and I always refer to that one time when I was in grade school for one of our recognition rights--yes, yours truly is the type who made it to those honorable ranks, at least as a child. My surname, which begins with the letter Y, has granted me the equitable capacity to be patient because I have almost always been called last. But even as I type now, the sadness (and even fear) crawls under my skin as I recall how it felt for me to stand where I stood, and wonder, where is my mother?

You see, before the ceremony, my mom said she'd go to school late and just catch up (with a promise to really do) in time to pin my medal on my chest. Of course, as a child, nothing could have meant more that day than to have my mom by my side because that medal was for her (and for my ego, as I later realized.) But a single mom that she is, with a growing household to run, she had other things to attend to. At first, and I still can remember the feeling quite well and raw, I wanted to ask, "what could be more important than my recognition rights?" but of course, I kept mum and just went my way. So yes, little old first grader me attended my recognition rights alone... but with hopes and a complete trust in my mom's promise to be there.

So I waited, quite anxiously, with an irritating frequency of glancing and even guarding the faces of people entering our school's humble auditorium. There were families of three, fours and fives--some were of moms and dads, most were with lolos and lolas, but my mom's angelic face was nowhere to be found. Every new pair of parent and child that I saw fill the room up left my heart sinking deeper. I swear I cried little tears.

And continued to well up deep inside as our batch was called up the stage. It took roughly a good five minutes for every first grader to line up and climb the few but what seemed to me, heaviest flight of stairs to ever existed. We had to stand on this makeshift wooden stairs for our formation, I of course, having a surname that began with a Y had to stand at the very back--at a very tall space if you ask me, but "tall" was the least feeling I had at my disposal. Up on my highest position, I could see the entire audience area, from each seat, emptied and occupied, to every aisle and every tile, but my mom was nowhere to be found. I tugged on my skirt and worried I would pee myself to shame, just so people would have something else to remember of me aside from being the kid without a parent to pin her medal with. Of course I grew up realizing there were bigger fears to overcome in life, but back then, that was my first experience of unwelcomed solitude. I felt orphaned, and worse, required to explain my confinement. Every classmate called to the center stage, bowing as practiced, and kissed by ever-so-proud parents left me turning a deeper shade of green. I was scared to be alone, ashamed to be alone, and angry to be alone. The feelings went into a rotation, I spun inside my puny brain, "Mama... mama... asan ka na... (Mom... mom... where are you...)?"

Then my name was called. It was only then that I realized, I was literally alone on stage. Every classmate's gone with their medals and certificates--and loving families, and kodakan moments; and I was alone in that big stage, savoring the empty lights and the emptiness of having to stand on your own--for the first time. I had to take five careful steps down, so I can walk where our teachers taped an X at. I walked with my head down, both hands tugging my navy blue sailor skirt. Took my bow, forced a smile because disappointed as I was, I was still the teacher's pet within. I heard my teacher say, "Kumiko, look at the camera for your picture." I was helpless against people with authority. I guess at the time, I can even say, I was helpless against anything, period. I had no family to stand by me as I receive my reward. Frankly, it marked what other people learned the easy way, that achievements are nothing if you have no one to share them with.

After I took my bow, I had to further climb down and step on the little platform stage where you're supposed to be welcomed and joined by your family, for a photo. There I saw countless students like I who studied hard and were very much deserving of their family's excessive hugs and kisses. I don't know how to tell my teachers, "Sorry po, wala si mama. (I'm sorry, my mom isn't around.)" I don't know, how do you tell the photographer, "Ako lang po sa picture. (It would just be me in the photo.)" I was just 7 years old, and I did what any 7 year old did best at times like those, I wore a crumpled face.

One of my teachers who saw must have understood the gesture because she started walking towards me. In hindsight, I think she volunteered to pin my medal on me, just so I wouldn't be alone. Until I heard a familiar voice. It was my mom hurriedly walking down the aisle, towards me. She was wearing a light faded pink sweatshirt unlike most moms who were in their best silks and chiffon. She had her hair tied back, as if she just went out for a walk--but it didn't matter to me how she looked. I didn't feel bad she had no make up on, she was still a very beautiful mom, the most beautiful even. She was there. She kept her promise. She took the medal that I studied hard and well just to be able to give to her, pinned it near my heart and hugged me tight. She smelled of our home, she is my home, and held me close for a picture that I may have lost due to my regrettable negligence, but will not need to remember how being with family on special occasions mattered most. How your family, the ones who love you, will never feel too far as long as they don't forget to try and be there.

My mom then kissed me and briefly apologized for being late as she escorted me back to my row. We finished the ceremony and went home together, and surprise, she prepared a huge feast for me. I never felt more loved than ever--especially after having felt so scared over something that is rationally petty, but too grand and meaningful for my childish heart.

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. A view into one of my favorite stories to tell--a story of courage and trust, that sometimes we have to rely on other people to add value to things that we worked hard for deserving; and that sometimes we have to believe that these people, no matter what the challenges come to the surface, will do their very best to not ever miss out on the opportunity to make you happy.

Just like what one of my favorite Filipino restaurants, Max's Restaurant, is now offering. A very efficient, convenient and busy-people-friendly food delivery service, that conquers tides, timelines and the busiest calendar of every thoughtful soul around the world. This new service is truly at the helm and heart of every Filipino family. Now, you don't have to worry about being late or worse, missing out on a special moment. Salamat sa Max's, lahat ng Pilipino #SaloSaloKahitMalayo.

Pls LIKE and Share my post from the Max's FB page to help spread the word about this new campaign. :) GO TO THIS LINK. Comment with hashtag #SaloSaloKahitMalayo! :)

To learn more about this new service, watch their video below
Don't forget to like them on Facebook: www.facebook.com/maxsrestaurant. Visit their website at www.maxschicken.com.

LovingSunshine is a blog about beauty and loving life. 
New stories are published EVERY DAY, 11:30 AM, Philippine Time! Hope you enjoyed your visit, don't forget to comment and connect with me through my various social pages as linked below.

Family is never too far.

Tweet You'll never know how a loss feels like until you experience having lost something yourself. That is a fact. W...




I love the ocean, for the magic that it keeps. I remember seeing this Spanish art film Y' Tu Mama Tambien (and your mother too) where one of the lead characters described life as the ocean. That you have to drown in it... something like that.

So yes, I was dancing with a happy-happy-joy-joy spirit when Pevonia Philippines sent me The Ocean Box which I posted about here. But as promised, I'd be sharing some quick thoughts about the Pevonia Exfoliating Seaweed soap that I was gifted to try. :) Without further delay, read after the jump!

Sexy Seaweed

Tweet I love the ocean, for the magic that it keeps. I remember seeing this Spanish art film Y' Tu Mama Tambien (an...

Wednesday, February 27, 2013





Philippines is a very beautiful country. It has all the richness in culture, flavor and nature's bounty to be a world-class destination of choice for traveler's from across the seas. So today, especially for my friends abroad who love to be pampered. This post is mostly of pictures, so relax and just scroll down.

Le Spa Sofitel Manila

Tweet Philippines is a very beautiful country. It has all the richness in culture, flavor and nature's bounty to be...

Tuesday, February 26, 2013





TurnbackTuesday is a section of LovingSunshine.com dedicated to personal thoughts and other stories of inspiration, love and life that I share with you every week. TurnbackTuesday is scheduled onTuesdays, 11:30AM PH time. 

Today's post is dedicated to a skincare brand that even mi abuela grew up with. I'm talking about the blue and royal, Nivea.

Last Christmas, they sent me a box brimming with joy and love, for wellness and beautiful skin. I know it may come off as late to post about this act of gesture only now, but I didn't think it would be possible to find an angle for this feature, aside from it being a gift of love.

Fortunately, the idea struck me while I was exhausting a not-so-welcome but pretty-much-okay feeling of being alone on Valentine's day. With the nauseating traffic outside, I know bits of me is happy that I get to stay at home and lounge around; but as I scroll down my feed, and people boast of the cheesiness in the spirit of Valentine's, I ended up placing myself face-to-face with the question...

How do you celebrate love?

I celebrate love through words inspired by the constant search for deeper expression of honesty and passion. I celebrate love through sharing my thoughts and my heart through stories of random acts of kindness--sudden and raw. I celebrate love through compassionate and sincere regard to life's weirdly yet grandly orchestrated mystic. I celebrate love through giving.

February is said to be the love month. As much as I agree with cupid, I would like to dare everybody to make the entire year a celebration of love. Love your skin. Love yourself. Love the life you're living.

And of course, do not forget, always share the happiness! :)

Thank you very much again Nivea Philippines for always setting an example of goodness and reliability. Your passion to promote wellness through skincare is inspiring.

Like Nivea Philippines on Facebook.
Follow Nivea Philippines on Twitter.

On a different note, please don't forget to join my ongoing giveaway. Please help me be Shiseido's Beauty Ambassador by joining my #ShiseidoWhiteLucent inspired giveaway. Visit this link.

Speaking of love, thank you Nuffnang and Fresh Fragrance Bar for the lovely sur-prize! :)

TURNBACKTUESDAY#21 How do you celebrate L-O-V-E?

Tweet TurnbackTuesday  is a section of  LovingSunshine.com  dedicated to personal thoughts and other stories of inspi...

Sunday, February 24, 2013





Remember the SUPER CUTE Limited Edition Collector's Item Majolica Majorca products I posted about here? Well, here they are once more! Before I played around with my new makeup, I of course immortalized their kawaiiness through photos! Be ready to visit Majolica Majorca as soon as you're done reading this post! Secret Blink, will fulfill all your wishes!

A whispery song can be heard.
Listen to your heart's desire.
Once you step into a forbidden place, you are sure not to go back again... and that's fine.
A secret that nobody knows about except me.
It's bold and it knows no bounds.
An unforgettable immersion.

Majolica Majorca 2013: Secret Blink

Tweet Remember the SUPER CUTE Limited Edition Collector's Item Majolica Majorca products I posted about here ? Well,...

Saturday, February 23, 2013

What is love? Is it the sweet taste of a smile, or the fresh scent of a breeze?

Love, is Simply You.

One beautiful February evening, I met with my as beautiful friends who are passionate with beauty, and we had great food over a discussion of great new products to watch out for this coming season. Among the bunch is Esprit Fragrances' newest release, Simply You for Him and for Her* P1,100.

LOVING YOU, SIMPLY

What is love? Is it the sweet taste of a smile, or the fresh scent of a breeze? Love, is Simply You. One beautiful February eve...

Thursday, February 21, 2013





Loving beauty means a lot of things for me. For beginners, it opens up my world to more people, who like me, loves to appreciate the good things in life--and to see the beauty in many things. A moon back, I had a lovely dinner date at Wildflour with my favorite beauty bloggers and friends from Luxasia. It's to sit down and enjoy Majolica Majorca's big reveal for their 10th year anniversary, which is this 2013!
For real-time blogging updates, follow me on Instagram! @kumikomae

With healthy food and great wine in hand, Cathy of Majolica Majorca shared with us that this year, the brand would be launching four limited edition collections, made of course for the fantastical Majo-Majo lovers in mind.

Everybody was very excited because MJ usually launches three collections per year, but since it's their 10th year running, we MJ fans are treated to four sets of Majolica Majorca's trademark whimsical kisses. For their first collection, we have, Secret Blink. I believe they're soon to be available in Majolica Majorca counters nationwide (if not yet now, surely by March), but to those who can't wait... here's what you should watch out for. No blinking!

Secret Blink

Tweet Loving beauty means a lot of things for me. For beginners, it opens up my world to more people, who like me, loves...




I was fortunate to see the advanced screening for Lincoln at Greenbelt 3 last Monday, February 18. It was a Spielberg movie, so I ad my expectations up--and they were met. I love watching historical films because I love learning more about the past, about people and places, but sometimes I find it taxing to sit down and read thick references to get my engines started.

So Lincoln was a treat on its own. I loved how it trudged on a US' political history, with dark candor and heaviness cultures outside of the spectrum can still relate to. It was a humanistic way of looking at what happened during the time, and there was comfort in finding hope in humanity in these varied scopes of lives.

Of course, what I truly loved the most about the film was the senatorial debates! Wow! Oration prowess displayed in the film feels nothing compared to the local politics that I grew up in! Despite differences in views, despite selfishness or even self-serving stance, I was very impressed by how passionate the portrayal of then politicians seemed. It was really refreshing to hear sense out of men in suits!

Lincoln is now showing in theaters beginning yesterday, Feb 20. Will you watch it? Or have you seen it already?

Lincoln Movie

Tweet I was fortunate to see the advanced screening for Lincoln at Greenbelt 3 last Monday, February 18. It was a Spielberg...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013





This month marked the beginning of a hair revolution. For people like me, who go crazy and experimental with hair, this uncompromising hair care treatment is exactly what we've all been waiting for. 

For the first time, two world-class brands combine their expertise in creating a revolutionary hairstyling tool, the Steampod. L'oreal Professional and Rowenta, pioneering hair experts, came up with Steampod, the first-ever hair smoothing iron that delivers a continuous stream of high-pressure steam to the hair, an expert flawless technology that guarantees never-before-seen results, even damaged hair like mine can expect much of. To know more, read after the jump!

A Hair Revolution

Tweet This month marked the beginning of a hair revolution. For people like me, who go crazy and experimental with hair...

Tuesday, February 19, 2013





TurnbackTuesday is a section of LovingSunshine.com dedicated to personal thoughts and other stories of inspiration, love and life that I share with you every week. TurnbackTuesday is scheduled onTuesdays, 11:30AM PH time. 

Last week was Valentine's week, and I know a lot of you were heady over the occasion. As for me, I tried my best to be chill and calm despite the temptation to go all out--and just love, love, love! However, my friends from Fully Booked, with their ever-so-reliable expertise in timeliness, just uploaded a video for their Live the Story campaign, in which, I'm a part of. Of course, in this video, romance had to take center stage. Hope you enjoy the video! To know more about the campaign, please visit the url linked at the end of our little video interview. :)


To those wondering, the shoot was done last December 2012 so yes, long dark and curly hair was immortalized in this video. Right after the shoot, I had my surprising hair-makeover-bonanza. :)

So anyway, my love for books brought me to this. Something I never really imagined. I know some of you would think, that's not a huge deal, you shared it with other people--but that's the thing. To me, it's more of a HUGE DEAL because this is about my love for books (which pretty much started when I was 3 years old, with my copy of The Little Mermaid, the original version, not Disney's)--a love affair that spanned through the years, older than my love for beauty! AND to share it with other people, is BIG for me. :) Thank you Fully Booked, for the trust, the friendship, and all the wonderful memories. (I am teary-eyed now)

Bagong gising at Fully Booked Katipunan! Did a book stop because I bought Christening gift!

After my dinner date with my beloved beauty bloggers, I went to Fully Booked Fort branch. It's a HUGE DEAL literally!


One confession I have to make is... book shopping is part of my budget. I pretty much buy a book every pay day! My Fully Booked discount card made it guilt-free!

What's the most romantic book you've read?

On a different note, please don't forget to join my ongoing giveaway. Please help me be Shiseido's Beauty Ambassador by joining my #ShiseidoWhiteLucent inspired giveaway. Visit this link.

TURNBACKTUESDAY#20 Romantic Notions

Tweet TurnbackTuesday  is a section of  LovingSunshine.com  dedicated to personal thoughts and other stories of inspirat...

Monday, February 18, 2013





Last January, I developed an unexpected fondness towards cooking. Whenever I stay at my lover's (yesssss, JK!) I always end up wanting to cook (or at least help out in cooking). Other than that, I always have that eye on the sink, cause with or without me doing magic in the kitchen, I have a penchant on keeping the sink clean, empty and most importantly, dry! I hate wet chores, don't get me wrong, but I hate dirty sinks more so clean and wash the dishes, I do!

Droplets of Nature

Tweet Last January, I developed an unexpected fondness towards cooking. Whenever I stay at my lover's (yesssss, JK!)...

Sunday, February 17, 2013





Happy weekend to you all! Today, I shall be sharing with you snapshots from the swap box I received from the Sneakerette, (albeit delayed) still awesome! There were some casualties, but I felt truly touched by the trinkets she got for me! It's very nice, Eileen has been one of my dearest blogger friends, and we talk so much about beauty, nails and even lovelife, that I feel like I know her enough to feel comfortable hanging out with her, when (hopefully not if) I meet her personally someday! Amazing, how the internet can bring us closer together. :) Eileen is from the US and I, from the Philippines.

So anyway, without further delay, pun intended, here are the photos from the box she sent. I had to photograph the products quite hurriedly cause they arrived the night before I was set to drive off to the farm! I wanted to publish this right away because I also feel like she'd be happy to know if the products arrived well and good. :) Briefly, I'd be sharing some side comments on what I think of the products she gave, what I would appreciate though is if you could share with me which you'd like for me to prioritize reviewing/featuring. I'm not going to promise anything, but I will definitely note your request!


BEAUTY SWAP with The Sneakerette

Tweet Happy weekend to you all! Today, I shall be sharing with you snapshots from the swap box I received from the Sneak...

Saturday, February 16, 2013






Last February 14, amidst a background of flower (even bacon) bouquet posts, I did this. I pampered myself with the Shiseido White Lucent Power Brightening Mask*. As a proclamation of self-love, it was the brightest idea available. It's my sister's JS prom the next day, and my post-Valentine date was to ensue, so I had to ready my skin. I didn't want any lives of envy or jealousy to remain. To do just that, I appointed my V-day evening as a good "me" night.
(Follow me on Instagram: @kumikomae!)

After 7 Days of Shiseido White Lucent

Tweet Last February 14, amidst a background of flower (even bacon) bouquet posts, I did this. I pampered myself with t...

 

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