BDJ Fun In The Sun: My 20 Summer Photo Challenge Experience!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Finally, I'm done doing the BDJ 20 Summer Photo Challenge. I really enjoy it plus I got to discover many things about life and got time to learn more about myself. For me this 2015 is the best year so far and my best summer. So it's time to have a recap my BDJ 20 Summer Bucketlist and tell stories behind every photo, just like the lyrics of a song a picture paints a thousand words. So excited to share with you how I exerted my effort and challenge myself to do this!

I've been to a lot of places this summer and all those places I travel is my first time to visit and discover. The BDJ 20 Summer Bucketlist starts last April 29, I've posted a blog about it here.

  1. Have a movie date outdoors
  2. Make smores over a campfire
  3. Build a sand castle
  4. Attend a local "fiesta"
  5. Enjoy a picnic at the park
  6. Participate in a fun run
  7. Go to a local town fair or "perya"
  8. Fingerpaint a masterpiece
  9. Eat the best Halo-Halo" in Town
  10. Capture the most beautiful sunset/sunrise
  11. Stargaze under a clear sky
  12. Ride a water slide
  13. Blow bubbles
  14. Ride a giant Ferris wheel
  15. Wear a summer dress
  16. Wear a flower crown
  17. Go to the zoo
  18. Nap on an outdoor hammock
  19. Fly a kite
  20. Challenge a friend to badminton

The campaign period is from May 1 to May 18 and submission of entries is from May 18 to 20, 2015. But I've done some of them before this challenge starts like take a nap on an outdoor hammock when we travel to Zambales with my bestfriend, Ride a giant Ferris wheel with my cousin and his classmates on Enchanted Kingdom, ride a water slide when we have a family outing and capture the most beautiful sunset/sunrise when we have a company outing in Boracay, so I asked first the BDJ if it's applicable and they said yes, as long as the photo was taken this summer 2015 meaning between March to May 2015. And as per my understanding in the mechanics you have to take a photo of you doing those challenge maybe as evidence that you owned those photos and you are really there in places doing the challenge. So I used my instagram account and upload it.

Here's the recap of my BDJ Fun In the Sun 20 Summer Bucketlist Photo Challenge. (Note: Not in chronological order but taken from March to May 2015 to understand the story line)

March 2015

10. Capture the most beautiful sunset/sunrise. This photo was taken at Puka Beach in Boracay after our company team building with Quality Management Department. I'm the one who wear eye glasses third person from the left 2nd row.

I become part of DMCI Homes this year 2015 and luckily I found out that as 15 years celebration our company will be having company outing in Boracay for 3 days and 2 nights on March 12-15, but we need to ride on a ferry/ship using 2GO Travel. At first I'm excited to go there because I've never been to Boracay and I'm so lucky because all the expenses is free paid by the company. But I'm having a panic attack because it is my first time to ride in a ferry for 9 hours from Batangas Port to Caticlan, I don't know how to swim I have what if moments like what if the boat sinks, don't know what it's like to ride on a ferry boat and 9 hours of travel in the middle of the sea. Ha-ha, to tell you honestly I bought my own life jacket just to be sure. (I still need to post an entry about my Boracay adventure so stay tuned)

Not part of my BDJ entry but I want to share with you guys! Maybe not the most beautiful sunrise for other people but for me it is the most beautiful sunrise because I'm in the middle of the sea, survive the 9 hours of travelling by a ferry boat. 

14. Ride in a giant Ferris Wheel. 

I've done this with my cousins and his classmates. I receive my first payday in a new company but my cousin is not available last February I save my money and treat them this summer vacation with his classmates and friends at Enchanted Kingdom. When I was a kid I'm afraid of heights but because of my job as an architect we construct high rise condominium I conquer my fear and my cousin idolized me and want to become an architect someday like me so I told him to ride in a giant Ferris wheel with me to conquer his fear and he really enjoy it. 

12. Ride in a water slide

 Last week of March my brother have a week vacation here in the Philippines (because he is based in Singapore) he treat us for a family outing. Again, I told you I don't know how to swim so I wear life buoy or salbabida in Tagalog. I'm afraid I'm going to get drowned as soon as I slide on the pool so my parents become a human barrier ha-ha. So I conquer my fear and ride on a water slide with my cousin.

April 2015

18. Nap on an outdoor hammock

My best friend and I have some bonding and me time last Holy Week. Having to work everyday for 8 hours we were exhausted and want some vitamin sea and wanderlust. So we travel for 5 hours to visit Zambales. We camp out for 2 days and 1 night. We take a siestas on their outdoor hammock, I think I slept here for 2 hours I just woke up because I felt the heat of the sun is burning my legs. Ha-ha I forgot to put a sunblock so the result I got sun burned on my legs but still I'm happy we got recharge and feed our wanderlust.

May 2015

19. Fly a Kite. This photo was taken at Nuvali The Fields last May 1, 2015

I really want to thank BDJ for bring the kid in me, I miss flying a kite when I was still a kid. We used to fly kite every summer vacation in Tarlac with my brother and cousins in the farm of my grandfather. So when BDJ include this as a challenge, I wonder first if I could still fly a kite and I guess it's a yes. 

1. Have a movie date outdoor. This photo was taken last May 1, 2015 at Nuvali The Fields

Last April 29 after I learned the BDJ Summer Bucketlist I found out that Nuvali will be having a Night Sky Open Air Cinema so I invited my best friend to accompany me to Nuvali. It is my first time to travel here at Nuvali and they offer a lot of activities and also I remember my childhood with this open air cinema, when I was young I remember there's a large screen located in EDSA Crossing where they show different movies. Going back to Open Air Cinema we bring a blanket and sit together with other viewers as we watch the movie "Shift" and also waiting for Up Dharma Down. 

6. Participate in a Fun Run

Done this challenge with my best friend we register for 5k for the benefit of all soldier who keep us safe and secure. It is our first time to join in a fun run, we have no exercise at all and no stretching. We woke up early that day because the gun start at 5 am, this was held at Quezon Memorial Circle. It was fun even though we were sweating because we know it's good for our health and at the same time we help our Mandirigma Soldier plus we able to meet Luis Alandi who is part of Mandirigma Movie. We finish the 5k for 45 minutes ha-ha because we run and walk along the way.

8. Finger paint a masterpiece

This challenge is easy for me because as an architect need to know how to draw because you will spend 5 years in college drawing buildings and structures, use mixed media and creating concepts. But after I finished college I start to work in a construction industry and never able to draw again. So as part of BDJ challenge I got my old watercolor and buy an illustration board and start my concept of summer. I drew a rice fields with clear sky. The feeling of summer breeze and add the BDJ summer. It is my first time to draw using finger paint, I know its going to be messy but still I'm happy of my creations.

3. Build a sand castle

This is part of my first solo back packing last weekend (Cagbalete-Lucban going to post a blog entry about it so stay tuned). My best friend is busy this weekend and not able to join me, at first I'm afraid to travel solo but I still take a risk because I was inspired by Ms. Nina to travel solo when she share her experience last BDJ Rendezvous Made to Fly. So I back my bag and travel here in Cagbalete Island in Mauban Quezon. I meet some new found friends and they help to build a sand castle. I've never build a sand castle even though I've been to different beaches on nearby provinces such as Zambales and Boracay. So I bought a sand castle kit toys and build this.

15. Wear a summer dress

Still taken in Cagbalete Island. My best friend will laugh at me if he see this, I'm not a girly type of girl well because I'm one of the boys. Ha-ha. So I really want to thank BDJ because I'm able to brought out the girl in me. I asked those kids in the picture if they can guide me to visit the famous old Balete tree in Cagbalete Island. They tell me stories along the way, I learned that they are cousins and still study in elementary, they just wanders around the resort because it's summer vacation. Due to time constraint I'm not able to visit the Magic Tree and mangrove but I promise them that I'll definitely go back. They became my new found friends and promise me to tour around next time.

16. Wear a flower crown

Done this in Cagbalete Island, the old Balete tree as my background and inside my camping tent. Ha-ha, I wore my DIY Flower Crown. I'll post an individual post about it. I used some scrapbook materials and old plastic flowers and bring it here in Cagbalete Island. I asked my tour guide kids to take a photo of me.

2. Make a smores over a campfire

When I read that making a smores is one of the BDJ challenge I google what is smores and how to make it. Ha-ha. So before I go to Cagbalete I brought a barbecue stick and marshmallow. The staff of Nilandingan Cove make a bonfire for us because it's really cold and you really feel the sea breeze coming from the Pacific Ocean. And my new found friend, Ate Weng and Ate Joanna with their kids join me as we make smores over a campfire/bonfire. It is my first time to do this and it tastes yummy.

11. Stargaze under the clear sky

At first I planned to go to UP Pagasa Observatory because I know I can star gazing there using their telescope, but when I see the stars in Cagbalete Island I take the opportunity to take a photo of me stargazing under the clear sky. I love astronomy when I was in Elementary and High School and I'm glad that I can still name some of the stars and constellation. I see the Polaris star, The Orions Belt and the Small and Big Dipper when I was in Cagbalete Island. I plan to buy a telescope so I can bring it to my next camping.

4. Attend a local Fiesta
This part of my Cagbalete-Lucban Solo travel last weekend May 15-17, 2015. It is my first time to attend Pahiyas Festival, after my Cagbalete trip I travel for 3 hours from Mauban to Lucban Quezon last May 17, sunday. I thought I would not see it this beautiful houses because the real fetival was held last May 15 but I tricycle driver from Lucban told me that I can see it because the winner still haven't teared down the decoration and the Pahiyas Festival is a month celebration for the whole month of May. So I took the opportunity and asked my tricycle drive to take a photo of me. I really like Lucbanon creativity and resourcefulness because they use different agricultural product and decorate this beautiful houses, I'll definitely go back and attend Pahiyas yearly.

7. Go to a local fair or peryahan

I got two entries for this challenge, if there's a fiesta of course there will be a peryahan. During Pahiyas Festival, there is a peryahan near the Lucban Church and Municipal Hall. Again I really want to thank BDJ for bringing back my childhood memories. When I was still young I used to play in peryahan every fiesta in Tarlac, my parent's hometown. 

                                                              7. Go to a local fair or peryahan
After I went to peryahan, there is also Tiyangge sa Lucban Gawang Lucban as their local fair, they cater all the local products like Lambanog, Bayong made of coconut leaves and famous longganisang lucban. And other variety of foods. I bought the Bubblegum flavor lambanog and longganisang lucban. 

17. Go to the zoo

This photo was taken yesterday, I visit the Pasig Rave Rainforest, the perks of being a Pasiguena. So lucky we have a mini zoo here it caters ducks, dove, different kind of birds and ostrich. It's my first time to visit here and I'm planning to visit the Manila zoo too.

5. Enjoy a picnic at the park

Done this at Rave Pasig Rainforest, I invited my neighbor/friends to joined me here, we don't put our blanket in the grass because it's prohibited so we just put it on the concrete chair and food with sun shading.

13. Blow bubbles

This is one of my favorite on BDJ Summer Bucket list, I still remember I used to grind gumamela leaves and flowers to create bubbles. Done this challenge at Rave Pasig Rainforest yesterday. Ha-ha. Thanks BDJ!

20. Challenge a friend to badminton

Done this with my neighbor/friends and her family at Rave Pasig Rain Forest. I'm not sporty and it's been years since I got to played badminton. I really enjoy it even if I lose. Ha-ha. I'm sweating playing badminton.

9. Eat the best Halo Halo in Town

Want to know what is the best halo halo in Pasig? Aling Charing is the answer. The long line is the evidence, you can try it by visiting the food court inside Pasig Palengke. I bought the special halo halo worth P 45, hindi tinipid ang ingredients is the secret formula.

So there you go, I'm done doing all the BDJ Fun In The Sun 20 Summer Photo Challenge.

But that's not all, I want to share with guys. As the famous line says "It's not about the destination, it's about the journey". For me it's not about completing all the 20 Summer Bucket list, it's about the experience and lessons I've learned along the way. So I created my 20 things I've learned and experience from BDJ 20 Summer Photo Challenge.

  1. I become independent. I used to travel with my friends and family, but I take a risk go for a solo backpacking trip to Cagbalete Island and Lucban Quezon Province.
  2. Take risk and get out of your comfort zone. I said it before that I have a panic mode when I learned that I have to ride on a ferry boat for 9 hours just to get to Boracay but I still take the challenge and get out of my comfort zone, the reward is priceless. I'm able to see the white sand of Puka Beach and White beaches of Boracay Island, taste the product they cater and learn that sailing in a ferry boat in the middle of the sea is not scary after all.
  3. Self reliance and care for one self. When I'm able to do my Cagbalete-Lucban solo trip, I rely on myself. Do all the research about the places, accommodation and transportation. I learn to take care of myself, I brought my first aid kit and self defense tools.
  4. Street smart and haggling. Going solo travelling makes me more wiser, I learn the mode of transportation and transfer from one location to another place. I learn to haggle the prices of bangkero's price from Mauban Port to Cagbalete Island. 
  5. Patience is a virtue. I experience waiting to a long line with other passengers waiting for the public boat just to be able to get from Mauban Port to Cagbalete Island and pay P 50.00 instead of P 1000 for private banca. Able to eat the best halo halo in Pasig and wait to a long line with their suki. Or travel for 9 hours via ferry boat to get to Boracay.
  6. Bringing back my childhood memories. I'm so happy that I'm able to do bring back my childhood memories and do the things I enjoy as a kid. Flying a kite, blow bubbles and play badminton or visit and play in a peryahan.
  7. Go back to your old hobby and be creative. I'm able to draw again and create a flower crown.
  8. Self confidence. I'm able to bring back my self confidence and self esteem that I can do a solo trip, I don't seek reconfirmation of others and just trust my guts. That I can ride in a water slide and bring also self confident of my cousin and conquer his fear of heights when we ride in a giant Ferris Wheel.
  9. Restore your faith in human kindness. When I take the risk of going a solo travel at first I'm afraid people going to do bad things like they going get my money or harass me. But when I travel solo last weekend my faith in humanity restored. I asked them how, why, what the things I need to get to places to another places and they answer me politely. I even got to know them personally, the bangkeros, the kids as my tour guide, the staff and the owner of the resort in Cagbalete Island, the jeepney and tricycle drivers. I learned that going on a solo trip is not scary as I thought and there's still human kindness in everyone.
  10. I learn how grateful to make friends. I thought when I travel solo, I'm all alone but I was wrong, I meet some found friends along the way. When I was waiting in the line to Mauban port, I was able to make friends with Ate Weng and Ate Joanna with their family who are also waiting for the public boat and I learned that they are also going to the resort were I'm going to from then on we camp out and bond together while we stay in Cagbalete Island. (P.S. They even add me on FB and plan to together again someday)
  11. Appreciate little things. Doing BDJ challenges make me more appreciate little things like the yummy taste of smores heated in a camp fire, a cheap but the best halo halo is more delicious than expensive one, that it's not easy to build a sand castle I thought it was easy because I worked in construction industry, I learn that Pahiyas Festival is really important to Lucban because it's not just a festival but a celebration for a bountiful harvest of agricultural products and how stargazing in a clear sky can keep me calm, the sunset and the sunrise.
  12. I learn my limits and what more I'm capable off. I thought I can never travel alone, but I just did. I learned how far I can walk or run doing the fun run, how far I can travel alone, how to conquer my fear of riding on a ferry boat.
  13. New level of humility. I got to know the people from Lucban and Cagbalete Island that even though they are in poverty they greet with a smiling face. The kids who help me do the challenge wear a flower crown and summer dress they are in poverty but still they want to finish their studies and help their family. How people are willing to help you in times of trouble.
  14. Become a resourceful. Because I'm determined to finish the challenges I become resourceful, I search and google some stuff that's why I learn that Nuvali will be having an outdoor cinema, I learned that there's a peryahan and tiyangge in Lucban. I learn to asked other people the price of the fare, how get to Lucban from Lucena. 
  15. Learn new things. Like what is smores and how to make it, what is Pahiyas festival and how important it is for Lucban, Longganisang Lucban is delicious if it is cooked crunchy, that Cagbalete got its name because Balete tree is abundant there. You have to water first the sand and estimate it to build sand castle just like mixing of cement and sand to build a house. 
  16. I learn how strong I am. That I can conquer my fear and take risk. 
  17. I can be a person I wanted to be. That it's OK to wear girly stuff even if I'm a boyish type of girl and treat my friends as cowboy girl or one of the boys. Or I can enjoy the beach alone, travel solo and go to the places I want to be. 
  18. What is important and things I could live without. Enjoying my solo travel I realize I didn't check my Facebook for two days. I just too busy wandering around Cagbalete and Lucban and doing the challenges. And you will find out what really matters to you. 
  19. Get recharge and heal yourself. When we travel to Zambales I got recharge by taking a nap on an outdoor hammock or going solo trip to Cagbalete Island. Having time alone and replenish or heal my mind, emotions and physical aspect without thinking about deadlines, reports about my work.
  20. Freedom. Doing all this challenges gives me freedom to do the things I thought I can't do. I do the challenge in my own pace. Even if it has a deadline I can break the rules by not doing the challenges in chronological order. It gives me freedom when I travel solo.
So now that I'm done, I really want to take the opportunity to give thanks to BDJ for having this challenge. And if you really want to know why I'm determined to win and exert my effort it's because of the prize waiting for the winner. I plan to surprise my parents. This year my parent's will be celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary so if I win I will use it and treat them. Because I'm thankful to them for working hard so that my brother and I able to finished college and it's time to give it back.

Thanks to the generous partner and sponsors

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