I Am Raincrystal

A Mom, Daughter, Photography Enthusiast, And An Internet Marketer

Time for a Cool Change

This year 2013 has been a milestone year for me. I guess you can say it’s a year with more than a few changes and adventures that will go down the books, so to speak. For one, my daughter turned 18 this year. Yes, even I couldn’t believe how fast time just flew by! Being mom to her is one of the most fulfilling aspects of my life.

Turning 18, my daughter decided she would rather have her 18 destinations, instead of just splurging it all on a night of celebration. Indeed, it sounded more expensive, yet with lots of creativity and blessed with a few resources, we’ve accomplished way more than we’ve even imagined. We’re almost done with the 18 destinations. I’m just behind in blogging about them. 😀

Another milestone is that I’ve finally migrated to a smartphone around middle of the year when I got one for my birthday gift. Joining Instagram was one of the reasons why I wanted one in the first place. I simply love taking and sharing photos, not to mention following some really interesting individuals on Instagram and having a peek at their lifestyles.

The year is almost at its end. The main reason for this post is about a really cool change. No, it’s nothing fancy. It’s just about me having a massive haircut! LOL! 😀 You see, I’ve been well aware of my weight gain and I’ve wanted to sport longer hair so I could somehow hide it. In the end, I would rather revert back to enjoying short hair, like I’ve always preferred.. with another twist though, I’ve had my hair colored near red (burgundy) — like I’ve always wished! Mind you, I’ve always wanted it red, even before it became a fad! I have this feeling that I’ve been a redhead before, perhaps in my previous life. 

Well, 2013 may end, but I know that I’m looking forward to experiencing more changes in the coming more days, weeks, months, and years. Plus, at the back of my mind, I know I’ve started on a bucket list. Hey, life is short and I’d want to live it fully! Watch out for more blog posts about our 18 destinations in the near future… In the meantime, have a great week ahead! 16 days to go… 23 days to 2014! 🙂 

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Shoe Selfie

Shoe selfie — not a new term but I learned it on Instagram. No, I don’t usually go for selfies of any kind, shoe selfie included.

These are special times though, so I’d like to blog about something light and amusing. And no, I’m no fashion guru nor am I someone who likes to buy stuff for the sake of it. I usually adopt the pragmatic approach — buy only what you need, esp. if it’s not a basic one.

Gibi Shoes

Mom said we’d be attending a wedding in a month’s time, so there I was shopping for a pair of silver high-heeled shoes. It’s the first for me really as I’m not much of a fan of high heels. I think they’re a form of human torture. LOL!

Gibi Shoes looked really nice and I got to choose a pair that suits my fancy. It’s neither too cheap nor too expensive. Photo that follows is me trying out my new heels. I guess I’m gonna need to have foot spa and pedicure before the scheduled day.

my Gibi Shoes

On the other hand, I like having pets, so I couldn’t resist this pair of dog & cat flats that I chanced upon in a Primadonna outlet. I love flat shoes! Now that’s a pair that I can wear more often. I won’t need to worry should my almost worn-out shoes would suddenly give up.

Primadonna Shoes

I hope you enjoyed this edition of my blog! Till next post… ta-tah! Yipee, it’s almost the weekend again!

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[18 Destinations] 2013 Miracle Art Exhibition

Since I have acquired my digital camera a year ago, I have become totally interested in taking and sharing lots of photos. And so, back in August when the 2013 Miracle Art Exhibition opened at the 3/F of the Lucky Chinatown Mall, my daughter listed that as one of her 18 destinations.

2013 Miracle Art Exhibition

Since it was also the first time that we’re going to experience 4D art, I was just as excited to try it. The 2013 Miracle Art Exhibition then became destination #10.

Art Fantasy Hall

The place itself has been divided into different halls or sections. Each one has a theme. Most, if not all, have really fun and interesting themes. I will be sharing some of the photos we’ve taken, but the rest of our photos can be found on Instagram .. search for #2013MiracleArtExhibition.

4D art photography

The Art Fantasy Hall has fantastic art pieces. We even posed in one like we were going down the drain. LOL! 😀 There’s the Art Cinema Hall where you can pose with King Kong or the T-rex from Jurassic Park.

4D art photography

Then there’s a hall with popular movie characters like in one where we posed with a frame where it seemed that Iron Man was flying out of it. It was totally fun to pose and act out on each of the photos.

4D art photography

We even posed like we were running away from a tsunami that hit the city. Whew! Am I glad it was just 4D art! We had lots of fun posing and having our photos taken. The staff was kind enough to follow us through and assist with taking our photos.

If you haven’t tried visiting 4D art, you really shouldn’t miss it! The 2013 Miracle Art Exhibition is still open at the 3/F of the Lucky Chinatown Mall in Binondo, Manila. Check it out!

Destination #10 is done. Now there are 8 more to go… stay tuned for more posts soon! 😀

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La Naval de Manila 2013

A bit of a throwback for today’s post… The La Naval Procession is annually celebrated in October. This is the second year that my daughter attended. Just like last year, their entire school assembled along Cuenco corner Sto. Domingo Streets.

La Naval de Manila 2013

I was amazed at the number of people who participated this year. I do believe it was much more than last year. I guess more people feel the need to pray more for the issues that are affecting the nation.

La Naval Procession

The procession started at around 4 p.m. Unlike last year wherein I joined my daughter in the procession, I stayed put to watch the rest of the procession of the different saints and took lots of photos — something I wanted to do in a long time! 😀

Knights of Columbus

I waited until the Lady of La Naval de Manila was brought out of Santo Domingo Church. While waiting I couldn’t help but admire the lovely clouds in the sky. There was even an early afternoon moon. More people followed the image of Our Lady of La Naval. By that time, it was almost 5:30pm so I went to meet up with my daughter.

awesome afternoon sky

We left as early as we could so we wouldn’t get caught up with the huge crowd of commuters. After dining at a nearby Burger King, we headed home. It was indeed another mom-daughter bonding day! 😀 Till next update… ta-tah! Happy weekend to one and all!

Our Lady of La Naval

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Stormy Weather, Megan Young Homecoming, & Alagwa

I marked the date on my calendar. Being a Megan Young fan, she was arriving Thursday afternoon, Oct. 11th via CX flight from HK. Oh boy, who wouldn’t be excited? Megan Young just won Miss World 2013 — the first ever blue crown for the Philippines.

Megan Young Miss World 2013 homecoming

I knew the crowd of welcoming people would be huge. I wished once again that I had met her even before she left for Bali. But that’s done and it’s time to face reality. I had to choose between joining her parade along Ayala Avenue or waiting it out at SM Mall of Asia Main Mall Atrium where she was going after the parade for a meet and greet.

Since mobility is a challenge, plus there’s the factor of Typhoon Santi — Metro Manila was just placed under Signal No. 2 — my daughter and I had to opt for the latter… SM MOA Atrium. It wasn’t easy getting there as taxi cabs were rather choosy and jacked up their prices for poor commuters.

FX to Sucat via MOA

It was a good thing there was a nearby mall — Lucky Chinatown Mall — where we got an FX ride to Sucat via MOA. Metro traffic wasn’t too heavy, but we were late nonetheless in getting to MOA. Thankfully, Megan Young’s entourage wasn’t there yet and we even waited a while to see the growing number of people waiting for Miss World 2013.

Mommy Vicky with me

Security was too tight so we didn’t get a chance to have a one-on-one photo opp with Megan. But I’m happy to have met Megan’s mom, Vicky Young. I got some photos with her together with my newly found TeamBata colleagues — Megan Young’s official fan club. I also handed to Mommy Vicky the scrapbook that I put together in a moment’s notice to give to Megan. I hope she liked it.

scrapbook for Megan Young

Bea and I decided to have our dinner after the meet and greet, and since we were already at MOA, to watch Alagwa — the multi-awarded indie film starring my uber favorite actor Jericho Rosales and child star Bugoy Carino.

My thoughts on the movie? It’s a must-see film indeed! I was totally touched by the father-son relationship in the film and I could relate to Echo’s plight as a single parent struggling to do the best for his son. The movie is simple, only has a few but meaningful characters. It is straightforward — none of the trimmings you will find in mainstream films. But it did keep me on the edge of my seat until the end. Heartwarming relationships, gut-wrenching portrait of human trafficking, and an astounding ending are some of the reasons why you must not miss Alagwa at all! Congratulations and kudos to everyone — the director, cast, and crew — behind the production of Alagwa! May we see more quality Filipino films that we could be proud of sharing with the whole world! 😀 Trek to SM cinemas to catch Alagwa as it has been extended on its second week!

Have a great weekend! Till next time… ta-tah! 😀

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[18 Destinations] A Debutante’s Party

Great Eastern Hotel

Destination #9 was Great Eastern Hotel in Quezon City. You see my daughter was invited to attend a classmate’s debut party. My daughter turned 18 in the same month but she decided to forego having a one-night party for the 18 destinations that we have planned.

Of course, if we had more budget, we’d have done with all the 18 destinations now. As it is, we get to have breaks in between so we could somehow save up for the next destination.

8th floor wing

To enjoy the debut party, we decided to check in at the same hotel so we won’t worry about going home late at night. Plus, it’s like a treat for us both, esp. my daughter… a belated birthday gift to her. The room rate was quite affordable but it did not come with breakfast.

8th floor view

Our room was in the old wing but in the topmost floor there — 8th floor. There was a bridge way connecting it to the new wing that we got to explore a bit too. I had a grand time taking some photos around the hotel.

Twin Room

Aside from our weekend bonding, I enjoyed a few hours of “me” time esp. during dinner time when my daughter was at the party. I decided to have my dinner at the hotel coffee shop — Cafe de Chine. What I like about it, there’s strong wi-fi at the coffee shop! 😀 None in the room though… boohoo!

My daughter looked great that night and she had fun at the party. That’s the important thing. If you’re ever in the vicinity of Quezon City, you can check out Great Eastern Hotel should you need an overnight accommodation. 9 destinations done… 9 more to go! WooHoo! Watch out for the next destination post!

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Megan Young Is Miss World 2013!

Miss World 2013 Megan Young

The Miss World 2013 Finals was held last 28th September 2013 in Bali, Indonesia. I intentionally waited a few days until my emotional excitement has died down a bit before writing about my experience in following Miss World Philippines Megan Young’s journey to the first ever Miss World title for the nation! 🙂 (Credits to Miss World Org & other owners for the photos on this post!)

Megan Young Miss World Philippines 2013

Since it’s the first time that the Philippines ever won the Miss World crown, Megan Young naturally makes history as far as Philippine Beauty Pageant records are concerned. Trivia : The Philippines scores a grand slam win in that it has at least one winner in all major international beauty pageants.

Philippine beauty pageant record

I’m a newbie pageant fan and although I don’t see myself supporting other pageants as fervently as I did with Megan Young, I’ve learned to develop an appreciation for pageant fans and contestants. Having experienced some behind the scenes moments during the competition made me realize that being a beauty pageant candidate isn’t as easy as it seems. These women need some inner strength to keep going amidst praises and criticisms alike. And fans who choose to support their candidates are just as formidable. They would work together and defend or attack whoever would malign their chosen candidates!

Megan Young Miss World 2013

Unlike other pageant followers who don’t want their moment spoiled when the winner is announced, I followed it closely via social media… Facebook, Twitter, Live blogs, live streaming, etc. The best part is, I even got to enjoy some family bonding moments at the mall prior to coming home with the good news! >.<

Miss World 2013 Megan Young

I was shrieking so loudly and then jumping up and down when I found out that Megan Young won Miss World 2013! 😀 It’s a good thing my daughter was a bit distracted to notice or she would have taken some photos or even a video as evidence. LOL!

Miss World 2013 with Julia Morley & Princess Ayu Mira

In the end, even though I’m just a supporter, I felt as much a winner as Miss World 2013 Megan Young. I signed up for her journey since she got shortlisted as a candidate for Miss World Philippines and followed it throughout her stay in Bali. I felt all the ups and downs of her journey. I got emotionally attached to the entire thing and at long last, I felt just as victorious! Now, it’s time to take a little break.

I’m still awaiting word on her homecoming as I would love to get a chance to see and meet Megan Young in person! ^_^ Now that’s one moment that would be truly memorable for me! That’s it for now… till next update! Happy 1st of October! Ta-tah!

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