My videos from Youtube

I FINALLY FOUND A SOFTWARE FROM MY COMPUTER TO MAKE THESE SIMPLE VIDEOS WITH SOME OF MY FAVORITE SONGS. What I like about this blog is that it helps me to play around for new creations rather being complacent and have less motivation to try and learn new things.  


December 14, 2017

I’ve always wanted to go to Europe for many reasons. I grew up listening to a lot of bands/artist from England/Europe ( Pet Shop Boys, Erasure, Depeche Mode, New Order, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Morrissey), the new wave era in the 80s and foremost being Catholic, I wanted to visit Vatican City and attend the mass that the Pope gives weekly in St. Peters Square.  Since I don’t know anyone I decided to book my ticket and use a tour company that was recommended by my church. I am so glad I did because the tour guides were amazing. At first, I was afraid about the daily activities including daily mass. I am very lazy about going to church every week. I have my moments and I go out of guilt more than anything. Therefore, it’s a blessing that I did and found this tour company.

Vatican city was as amazing as I would hope for. Rome is about as depressing as I have heard so we didn’t do much walking around at night at all, probably because we were exhausted by the time we got back to the hotel. For anyone who is hoping to see the Pope close up as he’s driving around in his Pope mobile, make sure you’re behind a someone with the baby. The Pope will stop and pick up the baby!!


The pope is a very fun and laid back. I’ve never actually stood anywhere waiting for anyone famous in my life. The most crowded place I have been to is probably a Madonna concert or a gay pride in DC and NYC. I am not one of those people that likes crowds or celebrities but I will tolerate the crowd for a good cause close to my heart.  It’s hard to describe the feeling but seeing the Pope and witnessing all kinds of people there to attend this weekly mass is only something that can be influenced by God. Not everyone there is Catholic and they would wear their costumes that represents their culture/religion. It was just the most beautiful sight. It gives me hope that for our differences, love can unite us and all us to love, embrace and respect each other. ( I included this bc I love the Swiss guards)


PARIS WAS BEAUTIFUL AND THE FOOD IS AMAZING.  This is my favorite view of Paris, at Basilica of the Sacred Heart. Remember how I didn’t like the daily mass with have every day, well, because of that daily mass, I got to attend a mass at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris. One couple from our trip had their vows renewed here. I am not a fan of marriage but if I could get married here, I definitely would get married. We have at least one priest with us everywhere we visited and I love our priest.  He’s very open minded and down to earth. I wish he was the priest at my parish.




I came to Paris and got my mug. However, I wish I had bought the version 2 Paris mug. I didn’t realize it at the time that this was the first version.  I always wanted to stand outside a balcony in Europe since forever, even though I am extremely afraid of heights, it was pretty cool!  On unrelated note, our tour guide did take us down through the tunnel that Princess Diana died in. It was at night, it was empty and it felt very lonely. 


London was our last stop.  I did have high expectations for London because of of the artist, bands, movie stars I like are from England. I was not disappointed at all.  I now understand why British appear to be arrogant and proud. London was so clean and posh, at least where we went and it just had a little bit of everyone wonderful in such a small area. Even the weather was nice 2 out of the 3 days that we were there.  My biggest surprise was seeing Stonehenge. I have heard about this place but never really read too much about it. Until I went there was when I realized the wonderful history of human evolution and our determination to do something that seems impossible to comprehend now.  As a plus, there’s a new England Stonehenge mug!!

stone henge


HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!  I tried to stay away from politics but America is going through a difficult time right now. However, never give up on hope and your dreams. My dreams have slowly come true. Pray for us everyone. We are still a wonderful country and there are many wonderful humans in the world. It only takes a very small percentage to eradicate our accomplishments but good will always prevail. It’s been almost a decade since I started this blog and collecting mugs is still a strong desire for many. For many collectors, getting that hard to find mug, or a mug that holds meaning is another dream come true!

Save the best for LAST…

April 1, 2015


It’s holy week and I am blessed with the BEST cousin ever from the land down under. He was just here visiting us this past weekend, but when my mom was in Sydney last year to visit her sister, who just passed away in recently,  her amazing son, bought me all the mugs and tumblers that Australia has to offer.   These are the most expensive mugs that I own. It’s twice as much as the USA mugs and my mom had to pay extra luggage fees just to get it all back to me. My mom is very frugal but she knows how much I love these mugs.  Shockingly, there was no lecture on the drama and the cost of bringing it back to America.


Australia group picture

photo 1


I always value ‘family’. Family consist of many concepts. There are the ones you are born into, the ones you find and that you call family. I am fortunate to have one of each. My family was separated after the Vietnam war and we were finally united 10 years after. It was a miracle that we all are together and none of us has perish trying to escape Vietnam. I learned from my good Afghanistan friend that she too had to escape Afghanistan back in the 80s just like me. Every time I heard something about ISIS on the news, it just get really emotional and feel so bad for all the victims. Terrorists truly beats all the evil that lurk in this world put together. Every time I go to church, I pray for an end to organized terrorist in the world and right now. I love my country. We are always trying to do the right thing because humanity exists in this country and we are very patriot. You can not try to destroy our humanity by your feeble attempt to blow up buildings or crowded public places. It only unite us more and brings more strength to our country.  We are called United States of America for a very good reason. My country is one big family and like all families, we have issues and disagreement but in the end, we will stand UNITED and we will fight UNITED as one family and we will prevail.


God blessed this country always, from how this country was found and how it will continue to have strength from our belief of ‘ONE NATION, UNDER GOD. God is love, God is kind and God is forgiving. If everyone in the world would develop a passion for these mugs and start to trade, I think the world would be a very peaceful place. From my trading experiences, I learn about the culture of the country from the trader, I learn how kind and giving some traders are when they send treats with their mugs and how thoughtful they are when they have new mugs in their country and would ask if I wanted to trade or buy from them at cost.


Starbucks city mugs collectors are like one big family. Maintaining 2 blogs and the Facebook page is very time consuming but when I see traders post their trades and how happy they are to receive, not just mugs, but sometimes a friend along the way, it makes me feel that all of my efforts are worth while. It’s also nice to get post or comments once in the while that the collector is not the only obsessed person but there are many obsessed Starbucks collectors out there. We don’t feel that we are different or odd and so much share the same passion all over the world. It’s our Starbucks mugs family and we are just growing by the day. It’s ironic that one mug can bring all people from all walks of the world together and the joy from getting a mug from someone can bring that much excitement.


Maybe it’s not really the superficiality of the mug itself but the story behind how the mug found its way ‘HOME’.   

Blue is the Warmest Color

November 24, 2013


I’ve been obsessing over the movie ‘Blue is the Warmest Color’ so I decided to blog about the color blue. I’ve mentioned a few times that the Skyline Series was my favorite series and it was the series that came out out when I started to pay attention to Starbucks city mugs and wanted to collect them. SKYLINE IS ALL BLUE EXCEPT FOR LAS VEGAS, DC and SEATTLE. This addiction to this movie, obsessing over it, is like how I was when I first wanted to seriously collect mugs back in 2008. I would go online and research endlessly for mugs and groups which I successfully found, the Yahoo group that traded mugs. I had no idea this concept existed!! MY FIRST TRADE WAS THE BLUE SACRAMENTO MUG!

A few months in the process,  I stumbled up a blog from someone from WordPress so that’s how I ended up with my own blog in WordPress. I’ve been online reading every interview of this movie, saw every Youtube videos I can find about the success, controversies, and drama with this movie, its actors and director.  It brought me back to 2008 when I first started after my trip from Nappa Valley and learned that I am not the only crazy, obsessive person with mugs. Now I am wondering if I the only person obsessing with this movie. When I first saw it in the theater 2 weeks ago, I wasn’t sure how I feel about the movie. I am a huge fan of foreign and independent movies. I love the arts and really appreciate it. This movie just crept up on me, sort of like mugs do, after 8 yrs later and now, I have a 2 blogs, FB page and Pinterest. Just like this movie about first love, being in love that anyone can relate too, I am  hoping all of my efforts to keep up with all the social media sources will help muggers find each other because we all share the same common obsession, our beloved Starbucks city mugs.


This movie won the Palme d’Or at Cannes. Steven Spielberg and the rest of the jury voted to give the award not only to the directors but it’s brave actresses as well. This may not be a movie for everyone, like collecting mugs are but once you are in your mindset, you will understand and appreciate the passion and all the hard work that entails. The result should be just as magnificent as winning the Palme d’Or.



April 19, 2013

boston blog

Boston-Front Boston Boston-3 Boston Boston Boston Boston-4

Boston Tumbler

Boston Tumbler

I was devastated when I first heard that the Icons were being phased out. I was even more horrified to see images of this new YOU ARE HERE series. For many reasons, I haven’t finished collecting the Icon series which means I have NO COMPLETED series of any kind. So how would this end for me? It doesn’t! The passion continues!!

The enlightenment came when Miel posted a picture of the mug with a blurb saying that these are really pretty in person.  So when I received my first YAH mug, Florida, from a dear friend, who went to several Starbucks to look for ICON city mugs but found YAH mugs instead!  So it was meant to be!

I am hoping to get all Canada and USA YAH this time around. That’s 57 mugs so far. I am not going to take it for granted that they will be around for years like the older series.

Just to emphasize how much these mugs are, there is a petition going around to ask them to bring the Icons back.  I never thought the day when people are more into collecting mugs than they are drinking the coffee there. I really don’t drink their coffee, but maybe a frappuccino and latte when I am desperate for a caffeine fix.

I purposely wrote this post as a pick-me-up to the Boston bombing. I was in Boston for the second time again last November. It’s one of the most beloved cities for me. Right, it’s in the previous post if you scroll down. A friend of mine moved there and I was thrilled to know she’s ok, she didn’t go to work that day and work from home instead. Her work is right near where the bomb exploded and she would have watched the marathon like everyone else and who knows what would have happened. I would be watching it too, and I still would if I am there.  This won’t put the fear in me like they hope it would.

I never understood the logic behind these terrorist attacks in America. All it does is united Americans and we prevailed even more, with more strength and determination.

This post is dedicated to all the Bostonians. You aren’t the only ones affected by this. We all are heart broken but our hearts will mend and justice will be served.


March 7, 2013

Osaka duo

So I’ve been very busy, but more so LAZY to blog. I am not claiming to be a writer but you’ve just got to be motivated (frankly, in the mood) to do it.

 Miel, although it was this blog that inspired you to collect and now, it’s you that’s inspired this blog!

If people really pay attention, half of the pictures are from Miel!! You are a perfectionist and I love you for that. What is more appealing is your generosity and how you think of me. The mugs says it all!!

Maybe I am just really LUCKY? 🙂

You’ve completely spoiled me, with mugs yes, but definitely with your friendship more so than anything.  I’ve always been a UK fan since I was little but really, UK is blessed to have you, almost as much as I am having known you for the past year or so. If people were to listen in on our conversations, they may have mistaken 1 yr to be maybe TEN years??

I adored the many mugs you’ve sent, but more so than the mug is the little BFF doll! I bet if you were living in the WashingtonDC area, we would do many meetups and talk about many things in life.  The conversation would be endless and so many laughters. My jaw and stomach muscles would get a great workout.

I finally got to hear your voice, thanks to SKYPE. Our first conversation went on for merely 5 hrs. What could we possibly talk about? Ah, that is something only BFFs would know!!

This long distance relationship is making me anxious. I’ve never had a long distance relationship that feels so much like home.

It’s Lent, my favorite time as a Catholic. I just became and auntie again and will be one again in 2 more weeks. I am so blessed in so many ways. Heaven is on earth when you are surrounded by such wonderful friends and family.

 Until our next Skype..xoxo mug sistah! 

HAPPY 2013!!

January 14, 2013

Hong's bday

Happy 2013!!

Last year was pretty amazing, on an emotional and self-fulfilling way.  My birthday is towards the end of the year so it ended with a nice birthday with many precious memories with a month celebration with friends and family. Turning 40 was a remarkable milestone in my life. I went to see a movie and it said that ages 40-60  is the best years of your life. This seems to make sense to me. At 40, your life is pretty stable and you still have your health to enjoy it. So I planned on enjoying the beginning of the best years of my life to come.

Happiness always leads back to collecting mugs and newcomers. Many are finding the this blog again and now are going to the Facebook page to meet other collectors to learn, trade and or just something to do since we all are addicted to the internet. Our network and support has started to grow and multiplying by the day. Some Icon mugs are discontinued with rumors of a new series coming out. If that’s the case, that’s really excited for us muggers.

Yes, we complain how much time and costly it is to collect mugs. However, is there such an addiction that doesn’t consume your time and money? 🙂 🙂 🙂

TO A WONDERFUL 2013!! Thank you visiting and commenting! 

Hong's bday

The beginning of an END

October 8, 2012

Although I am should be blissfully happy to have all the Icon everything from the Philippines but it sort of makes me sad because I feel that I may not have an excuse to see my dear friends from there. Both that came, I was only able to spend less than 15 minutes with them but it seems that I’ve known them forever and extreme sadness to see them go.

Yes, I have a confession, and I tried NOT to blog about it because I don’t want to feel biased but the most support I’ve receive are my friends from the Philippines. They have paid attention to my every detail and remind me of what I am missing and what not, but more importantly, they DELIVER. Delivery doesn’t just include mugs, but pictures, and information that I don’t really pay attention to. How is this so? You would think  I am expert about these mugs but that’s far from the truth. I love the mugs, it makes me happy, but AGAIN, it’s how I came about these mugs that brought me excitement and true happiness. Maybe mugs are really the moderator for beautiful friendships. Who else would carry these mugs from half way around the world and bring them to me. It isn’t just ONE mug but at least 5 or 6 at a time.

My Facebook page is an open book to the whole world so anyone can visit, like and enjoy the information, stories, posts, pictures that I’ve fortunately have the permission to use on my Facebook page. However, it goes beyond that because many wants to meet other reliable collectors to trade. I am not able to manage that part of the process so I have wonderful support from my wonderful tumblerista brother Dan. Dan reached out to me and we both connected immediately. What is most important is the trust that we have and the system we’ve established through our mutual passion and respect for one another.

On behalf of collectors that came to my Facebook page and who now have a rapid Starbucks mugs collection, I am grateful for all my friends from the Philippines that made it possible. I am looking forward one day to visit Philippines so I can finally see where you live, where you go and your beautiful faces and smiles… once more.



September 25, 2012

On our way back to Washington DC from Montreal, I wanted to stop by Boston to see an old friend, Julia. Julia has been a huge support of mine, bringing me back mugs from her travels to Taiwan, China and wherever there is a mug at the airport.  The first time I visit Boston with Sook, I wasn’t addicted to mugs at all. Collecting for leisure so to speak! The first trip, we visit Paul Revere’s house, Boston Tea party, MIT, Harvard but this time, I visit more Starbucks than I did the historical landmarks! Rather than going to Harvard’s campus, we visited the Starbucks at Harvard Square. Close enough eh?

The park is still one of my favorite places to visit. The weather was perfect that day. Boston downtown is small so we walked everywhere.  I miss Sook when I was there. I clearly remember all the places we went to. It was around 4 yrs ago when we first visited Boston. Now, Sook is a mom and I am an auntie with 5 nieces and nephews, 1 more niece coming next year. I am also turning 40 in a few months. Half of my life has passed. So much has happened and my path is more view-able and  distinguished.

Just last year, there is no mention of being friends with traders. Now, I’ve met some online, some in person and more to see in the future. Everyone has their single story to tell. Mine is never a single story, rather, complex with so many forks in the road and I want to take roads that are not only less traveled, but only emotionally captivated by my soul.

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Montreal- St. Joseph Oratory

September 8, 2012

The first time I came to Montreal was over 25 years ago. All I can remember about Montreal was this beautiful, gigantic church that was up a hill and that people would pray for some sort of healing miracle.  The ironic thing is that the person who told me about the miracle of this church was Budhist. They went to pray because a member of the family was sick and their prayers came true. Today, with great determination, I went to the 730PM mass.  As we were near the church, there was a bright spot in the sky peaking out in the darkness of the grey cloud that was in the sky. It seemed as if God had peaked out, to remind me that He is always watching over us.

My friend who came along with me, never understood this obsession with Starbucks City mugs. On the way there, we kept stopping to look for mugs. Half way to Montreal, she started to point out every Starbucks store on the road we would pass by and even made a detour to see if they were carrying any city mugs!! Once we were in Montreal, she kept noticing every Starbucks we passed and insisted for me to stop by to get my mugs! I was really hoping for a Montreal tumbler but no luck.  She said she’s never been into Starbucks this many times in the whole year altogether!

She has no idea what she has gotten herself into!