an open journal about the awesome things that God has done in my life

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Last Bits of My High School Life: Graduation

8:35 AM Posted by ask me 5 comments
The night before our graduation, my sister and I slept in our friend's house because we have the same hair and make-up stylist. We have to be ready by six in the morning so we decided to spend the night there. I wasn't able to sleep well, actually because of three reasons: (1) I'm not used to the house (or what we call in our language namamahay). (2) It was really a very humid night. (3) I am a person who don't sleep well when there's an event or trip the next day. I'm not sure if it was  just the effect of being too excited or something, but I guess most people tend to be like that too.

We woke up at 3 in the morning as planned, then took a bath. My sister and I ate our breakfast while it's our friend's turn. Next to our friend, is my sister, lastly me. We finished at around 6 in the morning. Honestly, I didn't like what I look like. I hate thick make-up. In fact, I don't like wearing make-up. My face changes, and I don't look like myself when I wear one. I hate myself for not learning my lesson before that I shouldn't let a gay beautician do the honors. They end up screwing my face with all those thick concealer, foundation or face powder, fail eyeshadow, and not to mention the semi-shaved eyebrows! Unfortunately today, my graduation day – the biggest day of my high school life wherein I get to take a bow for all my hardwork in front of a big crowd, I seriously hate how I look like. I look like a gay and clown combined. I even thought I am overdress (if you may call it). I wanna cry even if the program hasn't started yet. I don't want to face people that time. But then I realized that I don't have to let my dilemma ruin concluding moment of my high school life. I decided to smile it off. Though I was upset, I just valued the remaining time of being with my classmates and friends.

Our graduation didn't turn out the way our teachers wanted it to be. We failed to fill the whole gymnasium with our voices, and there are a few errors made by some of my batchmates when took their final bow. Nonetheless, it was a once-in-a-life-time event that each one of us will treasure forever. When it was my section's turn to do the honor, my classmates and I were really nervous. Negative what if's came in right and left. What if I tripped off the stairs? What if I failed to do the proper bow? What if I look stupid in front? What if my heels break? and many others. A batchmate of ours unfortunately fell in the platform with the live camera focused on her, so everyone who paid attention saw what happened. We heard the audience gasp which was really embarrassing in her part. I was marching alone unlike my classmates who had their own partners. My partner took off to have an early vacation in Hong Kong, so while walking down the aisle, I was escorted by a CAT officer, then finally my solo moment when I finally took a bow. It was quite pressuring since I was the only one in the stage with all the attention on me.Thank God, none of those what if's happened to me. It's by God's grace. Lol. I don't even know how i looked like. I tried to give my sweetest smile, I just hope I did in spite of feeling nervous. [I'll insert a picture of myself in toga next time]

After my section, there are 3 sections left. We did some pledges, sang songs, heard our valedictorian's speech, watch a video dedicated to us, then finally we sang our batch song Someday It's Gonna Make Sense by MLTR. From then on, we hugged each other. Many of us cried, even the guys. I almost cried, but I did my best to control it to not make my make-up run down and make myself look worse. When almost everyone were done bidding there farewell and started to move out of the gym, my family were still taking pictures. I think we got more than 20 shots. Have I mentioned that my family loves taking pictures? Yeah. We make sure there's at least one shot for formal and at least one for wacky. Here's a sample.


Though the beautician did a bad work on me, I don't look as bad as I actually look in personal that time. Thank God for the consolation.
We didn't receive our graduation gift wish, but I'm still praying for it.
After the graduation, we went to a buffet restaurant, then went back home immediately after we ate since we have another event waiting for us – the graduation ball.

Oh, the joy of graduating :)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Serving God

5:01 AM Posted by ask me , , No comments
It was this last Thursday youth service of our church when God made me realize something.

I volunteered as an usher. Ushers greet the comers in the entrance, keep track of how many attendees per service, and collect the offerings. This time of service, I collected the offerings. It just happened that that day was also the communion, so the ushers get to pass and collect the communion elements, too. It was my first time to serve in the ministry during the communion week so basically don't what to do or more specially the cues. One thing you must know about me is that I tend to please people (aren't that some people's tendency, too?). I was so nervous that time of service. For a while, I didn't know what was bothering me. Then a little while, I figured that I was I afraid of the fact that I might not please the people around me because of what I'm doing in case I fail to follow the flow or I'm nervous if I look presentable or something. That's when the time God let me check my own motives.

Why do we serve? 
To whom do we serve?

Exactly. It was like God was telling me that time, "Why are feeling nervous? You think you might fail to please or earn the approval of these people? Are you even dedicating this service of yours to me? Don't worry, You don't need to earn my approval or even my love. I already love you. You did nothing to earn that, nor you can't do anything to lose that..."

I would have cried that very time if only I was in a smaller crowd or in a secret place (I don't want people to see my crying; another thing to know about me). God's reality-check on me was really touching, but at the same time I felt guilty. But still, the lesson/revelation was worth it.

"So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."             ~ 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NLT)

"And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to the God the Father."  Colossians 3:17 (NLT)


Saturday, March 16, 2013

We'll Always Have Summer book review

** Okay, I have to admit that this is more of a fangirl post than an actual book review. Don't expect much, given the fact that I'm fangirling so much about this book, or this trilogy for that matter. ASDFKRJTOAFDKKLSJ ;)*

Note: Bare with this entry as there are quite a lot strikethroughed words/sentences.

Dang. Sure there are a couple of books that made me teary eyed, but this book, We’ll Always Have Summer, was the first fiction book ever that made me cry really hard. Even after finishing the book, I kept on crying even though *spoiler alert* it was a good ending after all. Bookworms know the feeling of struggling to move on with your life or even to decide what book they’re gonna read next after having a hangover with the last book they've read. That’s exactly what I felt.

Moving on to the third book of Summer trilogy was quite hard for me because I was shocked with how the ending of the second book went. I was excited at the same time to read We’ll Always Have Summer to find out how things will finally turn out.


While reading the first two books, I bet on Jeremiah. I ship Jerelly, really hard. I told my friend, Belly’s gonna end up with Jeremiah in the end. I like Jeremiah’s personality and attitude in the first two books. The way he is always there for Belly, like he has this ESP connection with Belly that Conrad doesn't have. That’s what I love with Jeremiah. He can be the best friend Belly wants. I don’t want Conrad for some reasons. He is ignorant, rebellious, and heartless... or at least in the first two books. If he has this feeling for Belly, then why didn't he just be brave enough to face Belly and tell her that he love her? After all, it’s always been Belly who approaches him, making efforts to be near him just as she always desired.

But on the third book, everything turned out the way I didn't expect them to. Nice twist. In We'll Always Have Summer, we get to know Conrad's thoughts this time, which makes it really, really interesting. It was his turn to express his point of view. The readers get to know the reasons behind his shitty attitude and actions in the first two books. Meanwhile, this cute, golden boy Jeremiah turned out to be a frat-boy type who got wasted and corrupted. I hate it. I like Jeremiah a lot. Just as I started to dislike Jeremiah, I begin to like Conrad in the third book. He's mature, strong (emotionally, because he got to control his feelings for Belly and let Jeremiah have her considering the promise Conrad made in Susannah's gravestone), and smart (like he has always been).

I liked the way Jenny Han planned to write this whole thing. Conrad speaking his point in the third book made the story more emotional and strong. I had this picture of Conrad as a strong person, who is ignorant, rebellious and heartless, but since he shows how hurt and weak he can be inside, that made my whole picture of him turn around. In fact, I started to admire him. This book turned my picture of Conrad in the first two books the other way around. He has this initiation as the elder brother. He is mature and smart, too. That’s what I want in boys, by the way. I always had this thing for smart and responsible guys. I had been praying to God about my dream guy – Christian (of course), and engineer (or architect) or a doctor. Lol. Anyway, as of my picture of Jeremiah in the third book, it turned the other way around, too. He went like corrupted and wasted in the third book with all those parties and his fraternity. He looked like not too mature to marry Belly. Both of them were not even old to marry each other yet, by the way.

*SPOILER ALERT: CONTINUE AT YOUR OWN RISK*

I was shocked in the first part of the story wherein Belly knew Jeremiah cheated on her. That was very unlike Jeremiah, I thought. But he had grown so much since the second book I guess. I have that titillating moments every time Conrad expresses his love for Belly in simple ways when Jeremiah is not in around. I love the way Conrad controlled himself in showing Belly his love or even kissing her, knowing that his brother will marry the one and only girl he loves.

I also love the idea that Laurel (Belly’s mother) didn't permit the sudden marriage of Belly and Jeremiah, considering the fact that they’re still very young. She didn't want this thing for Belly because she knows it isn't the best for her. But, she ended up with still supporting her daughter and showcasing a soft heart just like all mothers always have.

One song that came into my mind when Conrad finally came up to face Belly with his feelings after the bachelor’s night (which was the best among the best parts!) was Taken by One Direction. It perfectly fits the scene.

*END OF SPOILER*

What I like about the trilogy is that the emotions are well narrated and expressed, and it has always a thrill. The three books has their own way in making the reader feel nervous, titillated, thrilled, in love, or even feel their stomach tied up in knots.

I started to cry from page 233 ‘til the very last page of the book. Even after closing the book, I’m still crying, I know I sound crazy or whatever, but just give the book (better yet, the whole trilogy!) a try. Read it.

After all, I am contented and love the way the story ended. Everything came into place.


Rating: 
Recommendation: Girls (since this is mostly a girl's POV book)14 years old and up


PS. You can take up We'll Always Have Summer quiz to know if you're for Conrad or Jeremiah!

PPS. Read my Summer trilogy related blogs, too! :)

xxx

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Summer Trilogy

This week is a week full of practices for our graduation. Believe it or not, the thought of me graduating hasn't sunk in my mind yet. It feels like everything's not real, every thing has been happening so fast. Anyway, since it is REALLY boring in our graduation practices, wherein we just sing all day, I have found out a way to delight my mood, and it has always been and will forever be through reading.



I bought the book one of Summer trilogy in a bookstore last Saturday as I mentioned in my previous post. It is my first time to finish a book in one day! I myself can't believe it. I had read the book one, The Summer I Turned Pretty (TSITP), in just 10 hours. Thankfully, my friend, Marcelyne, has read the trilogy and owns a copy of each book so she lend me  It's Not Summer Without You (INSWY) and We'll Always Have Summer. The day after I read TSITP, I immediately read the second book, INSWY. Guess what? I read the second book in one day too. I read the third book in one day too. 

The story really kept me going. Jenny Han is a good writer, or at least in this trilogy. What I love in this trilogy are:

  1. It has not so many x-rated scenes. I mean, there are no sex scenes, though there are quite many kissing scenes. But not too detailed which I really like.
  2. I noticed that Jenny Han avoids too many curse words, which I really appreciate.
  3. Lastly, the story teaches values or somehow makes the reader realize things about love, family, and friendship. 

As I was so obsessed with the trilogy, particularly with the three main characters, I had thought of suitable songs for each of them and each of the tandem (Belly + Jeremiah, and Belly + Conrad). Basically, I'll have to do a book review for each book, next to this post.

Belly: 


Conrad: 

Jeremiah:

Belly + Conrad:

Belly + Jeremiah:

Belly + Cam:

Reading the book made me pray to God, asking Him how's my love story going. I know He is the best planer, writer, Father, or whatever -er, but you know, teenagers still long for this affection and love from "someone special." God reminded of Song of Songs 2:7 (NLT). 

7  Promise me, O women of Jerusalem, by the gazelles and wild deer, not to awaken love until the time is right.
Even though how far my imagination leads me when it comes in dreaming of my love story - my prince charming, God still knows things beyond what I can imagine or think of. He knows what's best and the things I like. I just know I have to wait for the right time - the perfect time of God.



PS. You may read my Summer trilogy book reviews, too! :)

Sunday, March 10, 2013

God as the Ultimate Provider

5:47 AM Posted by ask me No comments

After a stressful week, it is just for us to go shoppingggg. Haha. It feels good to shop when you know you have lots of money. We were planning to go to Quiapo first to buy eyeglasses we had eyeing since last year, then go to the mall, but unfortunately the route going to Quiapo goes in a heavy traffic, and we don’t want ourselves wasting our time being stuck in heavy traffic that’s why we decided to go to the mall instead. My sister and I went to a mall near our house to buy some stuff. Both of us have been longing to go to the mall, but since we were very busy these past few weeks, we just have the time now.

Just a brief background of what happened this full-of-exam week...

On Monday and Tuesday, we had our exam in English, Economics, Physics, and Filipino. I took the exam in Physics with only 30-minute rest. It was really stressful. I have to study really hard in this subject because i keep on getting not so good grade. By God's grace, i was able to answer the exam. :)

On Wednesday, we had our goverment exam, National Achievement Test. When I finished my Math test earlier before the time allotted is finished, I got to draw in my scratch paper. It really is boring and I don’t want myself wasting my time staring at the ceiling or looking around the four corners of the classroom, so I came up with this. (photo to be uploaded)

On Thursday, our English and Physics exam papers were brought back to us. Forget about the Physics exam. Haha. But guess what? I got the highest score in our English exam in our class. I really did not expect it. When our teacher randomly announced the result in our class, I was like "are you serious?" Well, it turned out she was really serious. Haha. Everything is by God and for God. I could have not done it without His grace. :) This day was also the last regular class we have as a high school student, but it's not that really memorable since we are really busy with our own requirements, except in our english class. In fact, i would not know that it'll be our last regular class until our teacher mentioned it. She made us say what in her class will we not forget or is memorable. I told he, the exam-like quizzes and her clothes (fyi, she's a fashionista. she never repeats terno) Anyway, this was also the last day in my high school life when i have to stay up late til midnight to accomplish all of my requirements because the next day, friday, would be the deadliest of all deadlines. Lol. By God's grace, I was able to make it with only a 2-hour sleep.

On Friday, it was kinda boring in school since we were only oriented about our graduation practices schedule. I was really tired because i only had a 2-hour sleep since i was cramming for the last submission of all requirements.

Today, Saturday, as I said earlier, was a time-out day for my sister and I. First, we went to Booksale as we are dreading to have new books, though there are piles of books in our home that we still haven’t read yet. That’s one bad habit I have. Anyway, I came across with a January 2012 Total Girl magazine issue, The Summer I Turned Pretty, and The Forbidden Room. When my sister saw me holding the The Summer I Turned Pretty, she gasped and told me that the book is really nice according to her classmates. They got addicted to it, she said. I was already convinced to buy that book when I read the plot at the back of the book, even before she told me the testimony of her classmates. One more, The Summer I Turned Pretty costs almost half of its price in National Bookstore, that’s why.



While I was looking for books, I saw a copy of Fireproof, which I already have, the one I bought online, with damage and more expensive. My heart was really broken, at the same time mad at myself for seeing a copy of Fireproof as good as new and cheaper, and buying a book online knowing that it has damages. I realized something...

If we don’t wait for God’s perfect plan and time for us, we will end up with the far much cheaper and damaged plans we have for ourselves. Patience and reservation. That’s what this experience taught me.

After Booksale, we went to Jewels, a cheap but very nice clothes shop. My sister and I ended up buying a one-fifty-peso short. It is really nice. I had the royal blue and she had the tangerine one.

After Jewels, we went to the department store to buy a shirt that will pair up with our new shorts. Gladly, we found a cheap one the costs one-hundred fifty pesos (150php) only. We roam around more to check out some shoes we long to buy months before, but sadly we have no size anymore. My sister and I suddenly passed by the Converse shop. My sister said, “Tara, tingin tayo.”
“Wag na, mahal jan,” I said, stopping her.
“Bakit, bawal ba mag lay hands?” my sister said, and I burst into laughter.
I was just reminded that God is my (our) Father. We can ask anything of Him, since He owns everything in this world and He is a great and ultimate Provider.

"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:13 NIV)

Lastly, we went to Payless shop, a much-cheaper-than-the-original-price shoe shop. We had been planning to buy a pair of shoes as for our graduation gift for my dad. We saw a couple of good pairs, but we embarrassingly don’t know the shoe size of our own father so we ended up not buying. Haha. We just took note of the shoes.

We went home after that, and I let her watch one of my favourite movies, Prom. When I watched the movie alone, I know that it already has a very predictable plot (of course it’s a Disney movie. Haha), bad-boy-ends-up-with-good-girl type of movie. What I want in this movie is just a flashback of my own prom. Though I know that Jesse (Thomas McDonell) will still be with Nova (I don’t know her real name) in the end, I didn’t know the twist in the latter part of the movie. One more thing, that guy Jesse is really handsome and cute in some ways. Haha. My sister and I got addicted to the OST of the movie, We Could Be Anything by Nolan Sotillo. It is really nice. J

After a very long day, we rest. J

xxx

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

What's up with my blog address?

8:27 AM Posted by ask me No comments
I wonder how and why did i come up with such address, too. "theunusualteenager" was the first thing that came into my mind and I found nothing wrong with it so... :) As I ponder about my blog address, there two similar, but entirely different words that suddenly dominated my mind.


I have here a picture of me and my twin sister (yes, i have a twin) back when we were 3-4 years old, I guess.


We have many things in common, one of which is our face. (weh. Haha) We own things that have the same color and design. We share the same faith, too btw; but in spite of all the similarities we have, we have A LOT of differences too. I won't mention one by one; just believe me. :D

I'm not sure if this thought is always noted by everyone, but I had always considered each of us as unique in many ways, aren't we? Surely, every one of us represent a solo, particular being. We are one of a kind among billions of people around the world. You will never see someone while walking down the street who has exactly the same physical features as you have, unless you have been clones, or you have a twin sister/brother, too. Lol. Kidding aside, that makes us unique. The matter, conviction, values, principles, and things alike we have in life, in my perception, is what sets us aside from the rest; thus, making is unusual.

I'm not certain if I made myself clear or what, but I hope did. :D

God bless!

xxx

To start of...

7:07 AM Posted by ask me No comments
Well, I had been planning to create a legit blog since 2011, but considering the little time I have, I just created one today.

I am a senior high school student (yes, i'm about to graduate), who just got out of the exam week, and finds creating a blog a pleasure after the stress I'd gone through this school year (charot xD). Since my high school journey is about to end, we had been bombarded with tons of requirements "as a preparation for college" as our teachers say, like the quarterly portfolios with reflections. While I was writing my subject reflections, I had a lot of insights that I wanna share to everyone. I will find time to post some of my school reflections. Haha.

I intend to post what I think, some memorable and ecstatic events of my life, my feelings, my thoughts, specifically the things that God speaks/reveals to me :) In other words, this serves as my public journal :D

Pardon me if I have wrong grammar, typo graphical error, or whatever error you might find in this blog. I'm open to corrections. :) Hope you'll enjoy! :D I appreciate feedback. :)

xxx