The Things I learned from the Movie "The Coffee Shop: Love is Brewing"

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


I promised myself to not watch love stories (just for now) and I haven't really done that for the past few months.

But today was different. I woke up this morning to a voice message from my dear friend, Carrie. Through her, I got the affirmation that I just needed all this time.

I knew that it was a romantic movie because she enjoys watching them and I usually give it a shrug when she'd recommend one, but much to my surprise, it wasn't just the so-so, typical romantic kind. It was in fact, an awe-inspiring LOVE movie that celebrated all different kinds of Love - Cultivating Love for oneself, Love for others, and Finding Love in another person, of course, the romantic kind.  

I was taken aback by the story's moving and uplifting messages that came so timely for me. 

Believe in Yourself. Love Yourself.

The story revolved around the person of the main character, Donavan. She is a smart, beautiful, big-hearted, passionate and self-sufficient woman, who didn't seem to realize what an amazing person she is. 

The movie started with her sharing about her unsuccessful venture into the dating world, which she described as a "brutal" battlefield, where some may end up as victors, casualties or wounded warriors. (Oh well, it is damn true!) She takes dating as a serious engagement. In fact, she endeavored to perfect dating, and even spend time to study and research about the guy, so that she would come well-prepared on the actual date. It was more like getting the guy to like her, whilst forgetting about her own preferences. Funny how sometimes, we, women would put ourselves out there and compromise our own standards for a chance at finding love. Too often, we fail to see the beautiful person in us. This movie reminds me that we should never lose ourselves to be accepted or loved by others. We must love us ourselves first and foremost.


Be a tower of light to others.

I love how the movie was able to inspire viewers like me to look beyond oneself and pursue a selfless purpose in this life, that is, to make an impact on another in whatever little way one can. Donavan happens to be a coffee shop owner who takes her business seriously by treating all her customers with special care and personal touch. She envisions her shop to be a place where friends could laugh together and talk, making it a witness to some life-altering and dream-come-true moments. She even throws a fund-raiser to support a village in Ethiopia. Unfortunately, her business suffered from a bad economy and is in the process of being foreclosed. Disheartened by the fact that she is going to lose all that she had built, she tried all ways to save the coffee shop and the purpose for which she had put it up. In the end, just when she thought she failed, the people showed her how much their lives were changed because of her coffee shop. 

"Lighthouses aren't there to draw attention to themselves, they are just there to shine."




True Love accepts and celebrates YOU for who you are. 


Somewhere along Donavan's journey, after losing her Mr. Perfect guy, someone came and found his way into her life unexpectedly. Ben, a top-notched playwright from New York came to visit his friend, Kevin, her sister's boyfriend. (Ben was played by Cory Grant, by the way, who is just as charming as my Chris Evan! Oh, I can watch this movie a thousand times, I swear!) He came to the town to have a break from the bad publicity he got about his play and found a new inspiration that started in the unlikely but funny meet-cute at the coffee shop. 

Unlike her ex-boyfriend, Patrick who was in love with the person that he wished she was, Ben on the other hand, saw her raw, feisty and strong side up front and later fell for her kind heart and amazing personality. He appreciated everything in her and found her to be an incredibly beautiful person inside out.





Believe in Beautiful days.


Like Donavan who went through the pains of a heart break, of unsuccessful ventures in love, and of nearly losing her business, everyone of us has those moments when nothing seems to be working well in our life. But the movie reminded me to stand still and hold on, because just when we thought things are falling apart, God is up to Something BIG. I often heard this but I believe this to be true. We must never give up and keep looking forward to beautiful days ahead.





Actually, one reason why this movie had an impact on me is because I can see myself in the main character. I see Donavan in me. And maybe, there's Donavan in each of us. We just need to keep that love brewing inside us amidst all circumstances.



My Black and White Photography

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

As a photo enthusiast, I love to add drama into my captured image. And I find black and white photography helpful to achieve this. In such case, I intend to highlight on the details, the composition, the points of interest, where I like to lead the viewer of my image to focus on, rather than the blend of colors and what not.

I thought of coming up with a project in New York at the end of this month. I got the inspiration from Brandon, who came up with the brilliant idea behind the "Humans of New York", New York's best-selling book, which had photos of common people with snippets of their true stories. I, on the other hand, aim to shoot raw photos of the streets, the people and structures, and I plan to employ the black and white dramatic effect into my shots.

I will share a bit more after my trip. I can't wait! :D

For now, I collected bits and pieces of my shots from my recent travels. 

Ottawa | "Memories"



Toronto Center Island | "Dare to be Different. Bloom!"




Vancouver | "Undecided"



Rouge Park, Toronto | "Steel. Still."





Thompson Park, Scarborough | "The Path Less Taken"






Thompson Park, Scarborough | "Peace in Solitude"




Ottawa | "The Wait"





Vancouver | "Happy Together"



Toronto Skyline | "Tower of Dreams"




Until my next photo session, good bye for now! xoxo