HOW many Christmas parties did I attend this year? Not as much as the past years, but it was still lethal on my waist. Is the food more fattening this time around? No. Perhaps it’s just my appetite. Even with the absence of lechon on the offerings, I still managed to devour more calories than what is legal. I’m afraid the partying is far from over. There is still the Noche Buena, Media Noche plus the unplanned reunions that may pop up in between.

Let me add the gifts from my generous friends and colleagues who will love me whatever my weight and body shape is. This is a good time to thank them for their generosity: Seda Abreeza, Marco Polo Davao, dusitD2, and Park Inn for the fabulous holiday hampers, and friends who delivered artisanal goodies on my doorstep. I can’t believe there are hundreds of creative minds and hands that whip up such culinary wonders. Food is truly the wisest gift to give. You can share it with family and friends.

It’s not just the megatons of calories I took home after the events. Santa (the Universe in another form) must have seen me as a good boy this year so he let me take home other goodies, like treats in posh hotels, an overnight stay at the posh Pearl Farm Beach Resort, and even a trip to Taipei, where I said I was going to return.

Annually, the Christmas parties of Megaworld, Department of Tourism (DOT) and the hotels are something I look forward to. It’s always fun! Megaworld’s parties are always intimate gathering and makes sure everyone goes home a winner. DOT’s yearend gathering is a chance to catch up with friends and meet the growing family of the region’s tourism stakeholders.

I will not say no to the city hotels’ invites. It’s the time when they showcase their fabulous Christmas trees and culinary expertise for the Noche Buena and Media Noche, and a chance to take part in the themed affair. Seda’s seems to be marking the pajama party its signature Christmas party for the media. Well, it’s relaxing and fun. Sadly I missed it this year.

How many others are added to the list depends on how many friends you have. We have different circles of friends and each has its own party. I have several. Imagine how many parties and gifts were swapped. Kris Kringle is really a brilliant idea if you ask me LOL.

There are gifts that really warmed my heart. How it was chosen by the giver I do not know, but the useful things for the home (which I never thought of buying or planning to get but never got around it) I really appreciate (part of adulting!). Thank you. Most of all, I am truly grateful for family, friends and friends who become family. Nothing can beat the gift of love.

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