I just came back dining at Chillis with Greg and Miriam Stokes' family and really wanted to blog about the dinner with my prince's generous and nice brother. But since I did not take pictures, except for my yummy combo shrimp order, I couldn't write much about it. Enough to say that I had fun, chilling (coz it was still cold for me despite the three-layered ensemble plus cardigan coat) at the dinner (which took forever, with so many families waiting for tables!). According to Miriam, she was surprised to find such a huge crowd on a Monday night! Oh well, I guess many people still consider January 2 as a holiday and I'm happy to jump on the bandwagon - blog post wise!Earlier at the Stokes' home, I collected my last (
Here are my Top 11 Christmas Gifts and Givers!
1) Parents' Pearl Jewelry Set. My parents didn't wait for our Christmas program (Dec. 22) to give me these golden hues pearl necklace, bracelet and earrings! I was truly delighted because this was my first pearls gift, after more than a decade!
2) Bhebe's Red Bag. Sure, this one may not be as 'pricey' as a real designer's bag, but just the thought of my sister -in-law Bhebe mulling over what gift she could give me as my secret Monita and actually getting me something I have been drooling for days is truly heartwarming!I was so thrilled to have a RED bag that fits my net book, solving my carry - on dilemma for my then upcoming trip here in the US!
3) Imee and Joel's Striped Blouse and Pajamas. I so love the blouse from my sister-in-law Imee and the sleepwear that my brother Joel allowed Imee to pick for me! They never cease to amaze me each Christmas time when they would give me little something that truly delights my senses. The blouse and sleepwear are pretty additions to their good taste and goodness!
4) Ate Amy's Pink Swingpack and her mom's handmade purple clutch bag. What a bag-gy pair from mother and daughter! Ate Amy surprises me with such a cute pink swingpack for a girly touch that is complemented by another girly handmade purple small bag from her mom Lilia. That's what you call feminine duo!
5) Brothers Mike and Allan's Gifts of Thoughts and Service.My two brothers Kuya Mike and Allan gifts need no wrappings and uses their innate talents to serve and help me. Allan re-painted my house and kuya Mike agreed to man the office (and budget) to afford me the vacation I have been looking forward to!
6) Santa Stoke's Stocking Surprise.Instead of Santa traveling far to bring smile and best holiday wishes, I was the one who swung by and found him at the Stokes' home ready, despite short notice and no cookie, to hand me my first- ever Christmas Stocking filled with Holiday treats that made my holiday sweeter!
7) Miriam's Coach Wristlet and Christmas Ornament.A fun and stunningly attractive Coach Wristlet and a Christmas Tree shaped ornament (which adds to my collection) are such sweet surprises from Mark's sister-in-law Miriam Stokes! She is an amazing, kind-hearted and thoughtful person I am blessed to get to know. She makes me feel like a family!
8) Greg's American Express Gift Card. Having Greg as my prince' brother, almost twin, I know why Mark is so generous and kind! Getting an American Express gift card carry lots of emotional value to it - since it is my first-ever Christmas gift card (how is that!) and the value loaded on the card will definitely go a long way for me while in Europe (without a plastic)!
9) Prince's Warm Gifts.Of course, the most generous and thoughtful giver for this holiday season is my prince! He gave me warm gifts (or gifts that keep me warm in the cold winter) - that includes One Pass Ticket for an RT- Asia-Europe-US with final destination in New Jersey (to claim his tight embrace), two (2) pairs of comfy socks - blue and a pink, waiting on my arrival and on Christmas Day - a salmon Old Navy sweatshirt and two (2) pairs of gloves!
A Kindle Touch. And the most thrilling gift ever comes in a small package and one that is ready to use right out of the box - a Kindle Touch! I feel so special knowing that my prince know that I love anything that has to do with books! And he just made it easy and elegantly!
Stuffed Toy From Ireland. And the most touching, Mark never forgets my all-time favorite - a stuffed toy! He got this leprechaun from Ireland during his conference there!
10) Best friend Dearie's Travel Essentials Gift. My bestfriend Ate Dearie is from San Francisco, California and has sent me a package containing the items I would need for my Europe trip - an electrical toothbrush (which I requested), pocket-size adapter that works anywhere in the world and a check to buy an in-soles! Truly a bestfriend knows how to give the best gift!
11) Myself. That's right! Who says I can't give myself a gift? Right, none. Just common notion. But last Christmas Day I learned from Mark's 5 - year old nephew, Carter this most important lesson - Don't Forget Yourself This Christmas!
Carter's school has a Christmas Store which features gift items for everyone on a child's list: mom, dad, brothers, sisters, teachers, grand parents and friends, all within a child's budget. I believe it is Carter's first time to experience the thrill of picking his own gifts - so after picking for mom, dad, he had something wrapped for himself too! It might seem a little funny at first, but actually, I learned that each of us should at least get ourselves something for Christmas!
So, with that inspiration -I've chosen myself a gift that will remind me to do "all the things I always wanted to do" and achieve goal after goal, from "simple to challenging" before I hit the twig! Yes, with the help of my prince, I gifted myself a hard copy of the book "2011 Things To Do Before You Die" which I have been dying (pun intended!) to have since 2009 (but always out of stock at Barnes and Nobles!).
Do you give yourself a gift for Christmas? What did you get? Do tell.