Prayer before sleep

Today is one of the most exhausting days of my life. All I do, I offer them to God. He gives me strength to fulfill my duties, my obligations.

I’m sharing this beautiful prayer before sleep.
Prayer before sleep.

Dear God, as I lay me down to sleep, relax the tension of my body. 

Calm the restlessness of my mind; still the thoughts which worry and perplex me. 

Help me to rest myself and all my problems in your strong & loving arms.

Let your Spirit speak to my mind and heart while I’m asleep, so that when I wake in the morning, I may find that I have received in the nighttime, light for my way, strength for my tasks, peace for my worries, forgiveness for my sins. 

Grant me sleep tonight and tomorrow power to live. 

Amen 🙏🏼

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Good Morning Prayer

The Good Morning God Prayer

Good Morning God!
You are ushering in another day,
untouched and freshly new.
So here I am to ask you, God,
if You’ll renew me too.

Forgive the many errors that I made yesterday
and let me try again dear God
to walk closer in Your way.

But Lord, I am well aware,
I can’t make it on my own.
So take my hand and hold it tight,
for I cannot walk alone.

Feast of Mary’s birth

Bible does not give an account of Mary’s birth. However, the apocryphal Protoevangelium of James fills in the gap. It reflects the development of Christian piety. According to this account, Anna and Joachim are infertile but pray for a child. They receive the promise of a child who will advance God’s plan of salvation for the world. Such a story, like many biblical counterparts, stresses the special presence of God in Mary’s life from the beginning.

Saint Augustine connects Mary’s birth with Jesus’ saving work. He tells the earth to rejoice and shine forth in the light of her birth. “She is the flower of the field from whom bloomed the precious lily of the valley. Through her birth the nature inherited from our first parents is changed.”(1)


Beauty 101: Kojic Acid

What is Kojic Acid?

Kojic Acid – is derived from several species of fungi and is known to limit melanin production. A fungus – “aspergillus oryzae” which in Japanese named as “Koji”, hence the name Kojic Acid. It is a by-product in the fermentation process of malting rice, for use in the manufacturing of sake, the Japanese rice wine.[1] It is a mild inhibitor of the formation of pigment in plant and animal tissues, and is used in food and cosmetics to preserve or change colors of substances.

A fungus – “aspergillus oryzae” which in Japanese named as “Koji”, hence the name Kojic Acid.

There are many uses of Kojic Acid, here in the Philippines it’s a widely known component of whitening soaps. Other uses of this acid include; prevention of oxidative browning on fruits during cutting and production, to preserve the red/pink colors of seafood, and as antibacterial and anti-fungal. These useful benefits aside from naturally lightening the skin only prove that Kojic Acid is indeed a wonderful discovery from nature.

here in the Philippines it’s a widely known component of whitening soaps

Let’s discuss the side-effects of Kojic Acid, these “side-effects” maybe beneficial for some but harmful for sensitive and irritated skin.

  • this acid is a peeling agent and should be used with caution. It assists in skin exfoliation to remove dead skin cells, oil, dirt and debris from our skin
  • penetrates deeply into the skin and remove the outermost layer of the skin
  • As the outermost layer is stripped off, new skin is exposed. Kojic Acid enhances cellular turnover to compensate for the lost tissue during exfoliation. Your skin now has clean, soft, smooth, flawless, and fair skin
  • Kojic Acid, as an acid and may alter some of the skin’s normal flora. According to Material Safety study by Oxford, it was found out that Kojic Acid – as purely unprocessed Kojic – is a dangerous substance by itself so it’s better to read product labels, go for the organic and natural ingredients before putting anything to your face

 

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we recommend – Organic Kojic Gold Soap. Click this photo for details.

 

After exfoliation, the new skin underneath is more sensitive. The new, fresh skin is more sensitive to sunlight, pollution, radiation, and to other harsh products. It’s a must to apply sunscreen with SPF 20 or higher especially when going out to avoid further damage on skin. Sun Protection

The skin is now also at risk for dryness so apply a generous amount of moisturizer or lotion while using Kojic acid.

 

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we also recommend a variation of Kojic Soap with the addition of Papaya to whiten and moisturize the skin. Click this photo for details

 

 

 

Kojic acid is an important product in skin whitening but should be use with caution and ample product knowledge. It’s always best to go for natural and organic.

 

hope this helps 🙂

much love,

when in Seville

Seville or Sevilla 

— is the capital and largest city of Andalusia – a province of Spain.  

Aside from having a very accommodating and considerate tour guide here in Seville, we also had an amazing trip from its historical cathedral, parks and architectures to its traditional and entertaining dance known as “flamenco”.

I begin with the largest gothic cathedral in the world the – “Catedral de Sevilla” or “Seville Cathedral”.  Its grandeur is undeniable and endowed with Seville’s remarkable history. 

All throughout our trip, I typically start by snatching free pamphlets or fact sheets of the place where I’m in. And my multi-tasking is at its peak when I’m travelling as I listen to our guide, I’d write down notes and take some artistic snapshots of every corner, view and angle, and be mindful of my steps and the road 😉

Historical facts about the cathedral;

  • 1184 – 1198 Construction of the main mosque of Seville and its minaret. (Spain was under the Muslims) Parts are conserved in the Orange Tree Courtyard and lower sections of Giralda tower, that I will post separately.
  • 1248 After the “reconquest” of Spain by Ferdinand II, the mosque was consecrated as a Cathedral.
  • 1434 – 1517 The construction of the Gothic Cathedral.
  • 1528 – 1621 Construction of some parts continued including the completion of the bell tower – Giralda tower.
  • 1618 – 1758 The Baroque phase of the Cathedral (my favorite period)
  • 1987 Seville Cathedral was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO

The cathedral’s construction lasted for more than a century. Our tour guide told us that when they were planning to build this, church elders declared, “Hagamos una iglesia tan hermosa y tan grandiosa que los que la vieren labrada nos tengan por locos.” (Let us build a church so beautiful and so magnificent that those who see it finished will think we are mad). Well, maybe 🙂 but this church is really wonderful!


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hiking the Giralda tower and took selfies of course 😉

  • Giralda tower is the bell tower of this cathedral, said to be the symbol of Seville. This minaret is 76 meters in height and was originally constructed by by the Moors in 1184. 

 

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one of the main attractions in the cathedral is the tomb of Christopher Columbus. Added in 1892, it has four bearers representing the four kingdoms of Castille, Leon, Aragon and Navarra.

The tomb of Christopher Columbus with its gigantic bearers

Beautiful Cathedral windows like this one with written date 1683, the year when it was added

Another beautiful stained glass window with 1777 as its date

 

 

to be continued,

❤️mp 

Riquewihr photo gallery

Riquewihr

This pretty village in France is the perfect fairytale setting and classified as one of the “Most Beautiful Villages in France.”  My favorite town as you may have noticed, I wrote about it in my previous post → Alsace France

Riquewihr a medieval town in the heart of the vineyards of Alsace, France. The charming half-timbered houses were built between 15th-18th century and with a Dolder that was used as a defense/gate from the 13th century.

Posting below the photos taken from this pretty village. This is where “Beauty and the Beast” got their movie inspiration. And you’ll see in these pictures why ❤️ Some I have posted already in Instagram 😊 


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houses are decorated with beautiful & bright colored flowers in spring/summer

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Riquewihr almost looks as if it has just dropped out of a fairytale book

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the best way to explore this town is by foot, and there are little museums which feature their wine and cheese making, old postal history, etc.

The “Noel” themed house

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one of the tiny streets in Riquewihr

Fairy/angel figurines from a souvenir shop

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Posing for a quick photo in her fave trinket shop

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another “Beauty and the Beast” inspiration is this quaint fountain

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the winemaker’s house, dates back to 16th century

Riquewihr, like their wine, gets better with time


Indeed, Riquewihr is a very charming village. It has preserved its tradition and beauty, still unchanged even after 400 years. 

 

♥ mp

Highlights of Granada Spain

I’ve recently posted some photos from our trip to this beautiful place of Granada, Spain. Because of it’s Moorish historical background, a particular area in Granada is called Alhambra which in Arabic means reddish walls («qa’lat al-Hamra’» Red Castle). My daughter got a book – “Tales of the Alhambra” as her souvenir that I’ve used for research and information…

Because of it’s Moorish historical background, a particular area in Granada is called Alhambra which in Arabic means reddish walls («qa’lat al-Hamra’» Red Castle)

Alhambra is strategically located with a view of the whole city. The first historical document dates back as early as 9th century. The castle of Alhambra was built around year 889, and this castle became a military fortress because of its location. It was until the arrival of the first king of the Nasrid dynasty, Mohammed ben Al-Hamar (Mohammed I, 1238-1273), in the 13th century, that the royal residence was established in Alhambra. This event marked the beginning of Alhambra’s most glorious period. This sprawling hilltop fortress complex encompasses royal palaces, serene patios, and reflecting pools from the Nasrid dynasty, as well as the fountains and orchards of the Generalife gardens. (Sorry, no pictures from inside the castle 😦 we weren’t able to get our tickets)

It was until the arrival of the first king of the Nasrid dynasty, Mohammed ben Al-Hamar (Mohammed I, 1238-1273), in the 13th century, that the royal residence was established in Alhambra. This event marked the beginning of Alhambra’s most glorious period. 

Then the Catholic monarchs came and parts of the castle were destroyed to give way for a new palace and the onset of Catholicism.

Below are the pictures taken from our trip, with the above intro and its spectacular sights, this is by far one of my favorite cities in Europe 🙂

 

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Alhambra Palace – where we checked in

 

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Ornate details of the Alhambra Palace

 

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Ornate ceiling/details of the Alhambra Palace

 

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inside the beautiful Hotel Alhambra Palace 😍all corners, from ceiling to floors and stairs are intricately designed

 

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breathtaking sunset and the view of the whole city from our dinner in the Alhambra Palace

 

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taken along the old streets of Granada

 

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the Cathedral of Granada

 

Souvenir shopping in Granada

 

Day tour with daughter ❤️

 

 

more to come 🙂

mp ♥