2018 Year-end Review : Passion Projects & Breakthroughs

2018 year-end review - ppbreakthroughs 2018 - iamjmkayne.com

It’s that time of the year when I go about the highlights (and lows) of the year as a review of what these 12 months have been.

2018 has been filled with extraordinary challenges, lessons, growth and love. If this year has been tough on you and those you love, I understand. The important thing is, we keep going because God is greater than any of these problems and we come up victorious with Him by our side.

If you’ve been following me, you’d know that each year I have a theme and this year its Passion Projects and Breakthroughs 2018. That’s where the hashtag #PPBreakthroughs2018 comes. Below are a few of the highlights of this year and sure thing, I’d like to share about them too.

Highlights of 2018 #PPBreakthroughs2018

  • Kokobear’s new job
  • Moving to Dubai
  • Dan2x Wedding 
  • Grey’s Birth 
  • 5+ Months vacation in Cebu
  • My Surgery 
  • Podcast Interview 
  • 10 Collaborations / Sponsored posts 
  • Completed Free Course for TCP
  • Started The Creative Passport (TCP) Workbook
  • Pitched The Creative Passport (TCP) Workbook
  • A full year of CFFL Dubai victories and challenges


So, Kokobear (my husband) was hired for a company here in Dubai which led us to moving from Abu Dhabi (after 9 years) to Dubai to culminate a decade of being in the emirates. Yes, it’s been 10 years now since we both first stepped into this beautiful land. And we are still starting to explore Dubai!

With the change of environment and city I opt to take that opportunity as well to go on a vacation for the new year + the upcoming wedding of my younger brother. Dan-Dan wed Yvette on 2nd Jan 2018 and so I prepared and created their wedding invite, a DIY passion project for me. Check it out here G+M DIY Wedding Invitation.

DIY Wedding Invite5

Then comes a God’s Gift to our family!!! Our newest additional “Belt” member. GREY is my first ever nephew! Such a cutie. You’d probably see a few photos of him on my instagram : @jmkayne.

So from late December to till almost end of May, I spend 5+ months at home. Stayed in Cebu and took a few visits here and there. Met a few friends but most importantly did faced a health breakthrough. Yes, I had a surgery. This story will be shared more soon. I have to say through that this breakthrough is pretty much amazing and takes a lot of courage to share. Something happened that made me never the same after that! 🙂

While I was still in Cebu, I did have an opportunity to be interviewed for a podcast! The beautiful couple Chris & Tiara of Our Food Adventures featured and interviewed me for things about visiting CEBU! 🙂 Listen to the episode here: Tropical Paradise, Swimming with Whale Sharks, and Crispy Pig Skin in Cebu, Philippines with Julie-Mae from IAMJMKAYNE.

jm kayne podcast interview on Our-Food-Adventures-Podcast-12

This year, I’m happy to share that I have made 10 collaborations for 2018. A target I made earlier this year. These are both more on marketing/ads blog post versions. Here are the 2018 Collaborations I made. 

This March, I planned to create the Social Studies online class but I was derailed to other stuffs and ended up with another course. Yet, still so happy that I opt to complete this free course right after delivering it to CFFL Dubai. Enroll in this FREE Course at thecreativepassport.teachable.com. It’s about Speaker’s Workshop – Speaking God’s Words.

Also, I have been creating The Creative Passport workbook. This idea came in when I was on the plane back to Dubai and a creative workbook excites me. I actually have a timeline/deadline on this but currently way behind it. Although, I have to say that I was able to pitch it into a publishing company here in the UAE. I hope it catches their attention and that they will give me a chance to complete it.

This year as well is a great opportunity to be of service to God. I think I have shared in the previous blog posts, that He has anointed Darrelle and I to take care of his vineyard in Dubai and become the Area Servants. It started with a tough road to journey on but He simply made all ways straight and provided everything and everyone that we need. I’d probably dedicate another blog for this story, I’m starting to get emotional and catching up my thoughts because there seemed to be a lot to share. 🙂

TheKokobears 7Dec2018 on iamjmkayne

Finally, the year is about to close and up to this day (as I write this post) I still haven’t have any chance of a real interview for a job. It has been almost 2 long years. I feel like it was just yesterday, but I have to admit … I missed working. I missed being in action and being busy. I missed being in a corporate environment… and more so, I missed receiving that text from my fave text-mate! 😀 hehehe

Also, here’s a short IG post – an open letter to Dubai . 🙂
Dear Dubai - iamjmkayne.com
Dear #Dubai,
Thank you for the past 6 months! I’m excited to roll a new year and see what you have in store for me and Kokobear 🐻… Two days before 2019, I reflect on the lessons, failure, emotions and encounters I have in 2018. I praise God for all the blessings and burdens of both situations and people… Indeed they’ve made me stronger and faithful. Dubai, can we get more acquainted next year please? 😉
Your new Dubai-er 😂 


With all of these things, I still believe that God has a greater plan than whatever it is on my mind. And I continue to wait patiently for His perfect plan and timing.


God bless,

JM SIGNATURE-black - iamjmkayne.com








Thank you 2012

Thank you 2012!

It’s been four (4) days… 

2012 has passed and I am now facing the new journey of this year…
But before writing for anything this 2013, allow me to have a short review of last year!
Indeed, I started last year with a bang! Celebrating special days of Christmas, Lolo Delfin’s  birthday, New Year, Sinulog & 2nd Anniversary with Kokobear. I was also able to spend time with his family in the very beautiful beach of Boracay~ truly amazing!
After getting back to Abu Dhabi, something in my heart is very sure. Sure of the possibilities of moving out in ETSDC… And as God has promised, ” Ask & you will receive, seek & you shall find, knock & the door shall be upon unto you!” this thought has become a truth. True to His promises, he then led me to a calm Wednesday afternoon when all of my colleagues are chilling & just having fun in the office… We were all trying to find prospect companies and we found this oil and gas website that showed some emails for job hirings. So I sent my CV one after the other for about 4-5 companies.
A call came early morning of Thursday, asking me to meet the Training Manager of NDC – National Drilling Company – one of ADNOC Group of Companies- Abu Dhabi’s leading/ government owned company. My heart was thrilled & could not even sleep while on the bus to the office – 30 minutes was spent wondering, amazed  & thankful to the Creator!
To cut the story short, I nailed it! The process came from April to June 2012, new visa was released, went for medical, had a new Emirates ID registration, rendered my 1 month notice to ETSDC etc etc…
Although my heart goes to ETSDC, I know that this time God has answered the very core hope in me. The 3 & half years in the company served me very well, if not because of those up & down experiences, NDC wouldn’t hire me. 🙂 I know that I have some “not so good” feelings towards some people inside but the moment I left, and these people have come to me; asked sorry & said their thank you’s I praise God for giving me the humble heart of forgiving & allowing me to move on. Surprisingly my boss even gave me a farewell dinner, the least I expected – but that one only shows that somehow I have made a good name while at work, I salute my parents for raising me well & that because of them people around me appreciate how I work & on how I value it.

And so life in NDC started officially on 4th of July 2012! Viva to the great Lord our God!
NDC life is good, learning new things & challenges, meeting new people with new culture and getting used to a new boss with new style! Go Go Go JM@NDC!


THE ANSWERED PRAYER: Found this on my pants & realize that this was my wish during 2011’s CFC-FFL’s Christmas Party

While Community life was a struggle, lots of challenges came along… from the very start of the year, up to the almost end… days/weeks when I & Darrelle almost gave up the service. Event/s that we didn’t show up, situations that has brought pain, disappointments from the people we look up, spiritual dryness and more. Somehow both of us thought it was difficult to overcome. I shed tears, felt my heart hurt again… and dwell on that for some time. While that part of my service was being challenged, my service to a new household group came up blooming! The current household members that I have seemed to be active & participative. They make me feel better &  motivates me to work harder in serving them. I thank God for this gift!

Family & friends at home are doing well. Mama, Papa & Dan-dan are good too! My heart is at rest because I have it with our good Lord & so I trust Him that He will take care of my family in behalf of me, of course my prayers doesn’t stop especially during the times when our country is being attacked with storms, earthquakes & typhoons  Viva Sto. Nino, Our Lady of Guadalupe & San Pedro Calungsod for protecting our place. I miss home… 🙁 so much… I miss the warm hug of my family…
Moving on, love has been with me all year, challenges and arguments between me & Kokobear is of course present but we always find ways to patch things up. Although I admit that  I am really hard-headed, but again & again I thank the Lord for giving this man who understands me. Never have  I thought that I will be loved with someone like him! (ha-ha emo na! <3 )
Finally in every aspect in life I just cant stop praising, loving, adoring the Almighty God, Mama Mary & to all the Saints for the blessings they have showered in me. This year as well, I keep mentioning “ancestral blessings” because I know Lola Tanciang with Lolo Tikoy were such good Catholics/Christians, and I may not know Lola Ascion (may their souls rest in peace) – I know in my heart that they have done good in their life that I am blessed because they have been faithful! Of course Lolo Delfin is  alive & kicking – thank you Lord for keeping Him safe & healthy!
Cheers to 2012! And looking forward for a greater 2013! Thank you so much Papa Jesus! 



This year I guess I will have difficulty recalling bit by bit the events that happened… coz after a long time, it’s been the first year that I am not able to keep my mini diary… or shall I say even my full length diary.. 🙁 (blame it to fb? or Kokobear? hahaha kidding aside ^.* wink~). 
I used to make year end write up, to reminisce the things that have come my way, appreciate the blessings & learn from the challenges that life offered me.. and so this year the tradition continues… 
But … how do I start? 

(Scanning memory for January)… 😀

Aha! This year starts from Cebu, as a part of my yearly vacation… I spent my 2nd year vacation from December… for 3 Big events, Christmas, New Year & Sinulog!!!
So, it was a dramatic year opening, I had this feeling of happiness to see my family celebrating my grandpa’s 88th birthday, such a reunion! Then of course Christmas eve & and New Year celebration… shake coins, eat mongo & do the other medya noche stuffs. And what makes me teary was when I felt the Family HUG once again~ nothing beats that warmth! huh! and while writing this , I wish I could have that again this time… 🙁
Opppppsss that does not end there, my 1st year anniversary came very dramatic too.. shall I say this BIG day is the same day as Sinulog day… and so I found myself alone walking in the streets of Colon, nowhere to go as the whole street was closed either by the people or street market or just closed because of the event. (Huh! sigh*) plus a lil misunderstanding with Kokobear, a short phone call that was cut coz I was angry! grrrrrrrrrr…..
But the night before that? was the reason why I was emo…
It was Cathy oenni’s (Big sister in Korean) birthday (15th Jan) when we went to a resort and I decided to go home after it because I wanted my hair relaxed, yet the rain came & so I was not able to go for it. So I decided to stay at home with my family, although half hearted coz I promised to stay overnight in Cathy’s crib to complete her bday. The rain makes me feel so at home, that it makes me feel like not leaving the house & spend this quality time with Mamo, Dado & Dandan. As hard as it may, I made the lie and stick to it…
Until midnight came, we’re all set to sleep on the second floor beside each other, sharing stories about my life here in Abu Dhabi and a familiar sound came… Knocking my door and calling out my name was Dhion, looking for me… I asked Dado to say I’m not there yet, that I am with RC to fix my hair,,, only to know that RC oenni is one of those who are asking for me.. 🙁 huh! (Such a shame! JM -big liar, & even used Papa) hahaha *uwaw ko*kkk (Well this is gonna be the first time to share the whole story.. just in case some of those involve were not aware… hahahahah) Eventually gave up and let them in. So those were Dhion, RC, Phil, Angels Joy & Archie….:D Plus a support from Di & Cathy herself, who actually sets me up to stay, so they could make the surprise in her house. The group brought a bouquet of flowers, cake & a bear… And so Kokobear was the head!!!!!!!! grrrrrr!!
Feb was hectic, regular Households Upper & Lower and the opportunity to be one of CFC-FFL’s Abu Dhabi Music Ministry! Ha ha, would you believe that!? I am a choir! Kkk
Then here comes March, a dramatic “giving back of ring” for misunderstanding with the bear… the rest of the days? Regular FFL lifestyle.
April  was a roller coaster, toured 5 churches in the UAE. Celebrated 4 birthdays. And a day with 4 events to attend to, We (The Kokobears) were sooo booked J
May was a challenging month; we (SFL) had our first batch of solo CLS. 7 Weeks of Spiritual battle, though not all 7 continued till date, but 3 are active! Praise GOD! Darrelle & I celebrated our Birthday together, with the SFL & with The Pira’s in Fujaira’s Le Meridian hotel!
June was another hectic month, enrolled for a year in a gym, which I personally suspend, coz I have been busy lately,, hmmmm shall I say one factor of my “gaining thing?”kkk hahahah. Then I had my very first CLS talk: Life in the Holy Spirit for SFL’s very first exclusive CLS. The Baptism and we also celebrated Edz Baby Shower. This month is the last month I wrote my mini notes in my mini diary, so it’s like half of the year I miss writing them, so probably I will just try to recall them in a random way…
Opppppsss… I have been writing this 2011 review & was wondering what “special experience” I have…
Then I have this conversation with a Born Again Christian colleague … talked about some verses & ended up about Mary. Gotcha! This year I learned more about the importance of the most popular woman on Earth, through Tito Frank’s “40 days with Mary”! ^^
And hopefully more from “Another 40 Days with Mary” this 2012!
And since I have started it with Religious/Spiritual matter, let me say this year is a colorful year for this aspect of my life. It’s when I consider myself being tested in my faith, I wouldn’t go much into details but I’d say it is when I realize that the “levels” of being in a community takes place in my life. And to me, I am struggling coz I am currently in the 2nd level. Sad may it seem, but it has been hurting me, so difficult ignore things when all I see are the empty parts. I am sad in this happening and I pray that soon I will get over this. Lord I need you here.
On the lighter side CFC-FFL’s Biggest weekend event called Strength in God has been my biggest project in my “hosting career” this 2011. Hahaha celeb ang feeling!kk It was an overwhelming event, to be carrying almost the whole program & did it well as per the audience, praising God for this talent! ^^
Work on the other hand has been very booming, booming that it seems to give me so much stress lately. ETSDC has grown more than ever, BOSIET clients have been like mushroom. But I am struggling especially in dealing with the management, for they seemed not to appreciate what we do, or maybe what I do. And as this year (2011) ends, I hope and pray to get a better environment/management job. Another petition I hope to be answered this year. Please Lord~ J
Health wise, I have been really gaining, too difficult to say no tp parties & eating sessions.. lol
Love life? This is the one that keeps me sane, esp. my bear… Of course normal moods wings & misunderstanding comes along but we still patch things up, even better, and as 2012 comes I am excited to go home with him & meet both family.
Praising and Thanking the Almighty for the god health, for the safety of my family, so does Kokobear’s family. A stronger bond with my friends back home, though were far from each other.
I guess there are a lot of things last year that have made me cry & stressed out, I’d say I am 75-25 or maybe 80-20%? But as  a whole I still know that I am BLESSED and as this year (2012) comes, I am hopeful for a promising chapter along the way in God’s perfect time.. 🙂
Aja JM Aja on 2012!