🔮 Year in Review — My 10 Major Blessings in 2017

Happy new year! I'm greeting yall now because it is the "legit" new year for me aka IT'S MY BIRTHDAY TODAY! I'm 25 nowww! Half 50! Sooo like what I did last year, I'm gonna celebrate 2018 and the added year to my life by looking back... I cannot define 2017 with just 1 word - it was srsly super hectic (in both good and bad ways)! I experienced such a BIIIG heartbreak and it's not even about my lovelife. It's about a lifelong dream... Anyways! I choose to not dwell on that anymore because there are a load of stuff that happened to make up for it.

That's why I have you this list of 10 major blessings - I'm REALLY REALLY thankful for everything. Dayuuum, it has been crazy~ I can't express that enough. Hmm, I don't have a particular order so just scroll away, alright?

Going to Baguio City with the whole family

I really don't remember that this happened in early 2017. I felt it was so long ago? Lels

We are 5 in the family and we haven't really gone somewhere far for vacation. It's always the hometowns, Bukidnon and Camiguin, and while they're beautiful places, we were very used to them. And because promo flights have emerged, I booked all of us for 3,000+ PHP only! That's roundtrip alreadyyy. I wish I can be as lucky again; I haven't done a booking that will beat that, to be honest.

What's different when traveling with your folks though: you won't really have to *budget*, unlike when you're with friends. Hahaha #realtalk But you also have to handle how parentals get tired easily because of their age. This actually happened but the fun didn't stop - we just let them return to the hotel first and we did our thang~

If you want the deets on our trip, I blogged about them:
Itinerary 2017 | 24 Hours in Baguio
Baguio 2017 | Paladin Hotel, Strawberry Farm and Bell Church
Baguio 2017 | Lourdes Grotto, Diplomat Hotel and Camp John Hay
Baguio 2017 | The Mansion, Wright Park, Mines View Park and Botanical Garden

I pray we get to go another place this year! Up to You, Lord!

Reaching Isla de Gigantes and Guimaras

Another significant trip last year was with my work squad! They are the easiest travel buddies since we see each other more or less 5 times a week, obviously. Makes planning and executing much easier~ But believe me, we do lots of *drawing* There were so many failed plans - we even had (work) obstacles before flying this one!

We chose somewhere far because plane tickets meant no more backing out. Final. Even though we had promo flights, that didn't mean hard-earned money wasn't used. Duh. Hihi. Sooo we had to fly and we did~

I have to thank my partner-in-crime, Jeddai, for organizing everything with me. Seriously, this was the point that got me thinking I should probably open up my own travel agency? Or be a tour guide? Or something related because WOW. I was totally proud of myself for handling everything from itinerary to all the other details.

It was stressful GRAAAAABE since they only depended on us two, as in literal tour guides, but the sense of accomplishment in the end - I wouldn't exchange it. It was just so fulfilling. Behind it all was the Googling, calling, booking, making Excel sheets... And I'll do these over again. I'll just have to set my next destination(s)~

Isla de Gigantes 2017 | Antonia Island and Bantigue Sandbar
Isla de Gigantes 2017 | Cabugao Gamay Island
Isla de Gigantes 2017 | Bakwitan Cave and Old Spanish Lighthouse
Guimaras 2017 | Windmills, Provincial Capitol and Guisi Lighthouse
Guimaras 2017 | The Trappist Monastery and The Pitstop Restaurant (feat Mango Pizza!)

Winning 2nd place in KPop Geek Wars

Geek Wars was one of my cheap thrills. Every Thursday, I gathered with some high school buds and random new friends to battle it out with other groups on just about anything. I even feel so dumb (okay, that's too harsh but I can't think of any other word right now) when the questions aren't familiar to me at all. But I get by because looking at the bright side, it'd be a TIL (Today I Learned) day. Hihi

Then it FINALLY came... Geek Wars: Kpop Edition!!!

Geek Wars has multiple rounds and in a normal game, I only wished for even 1 round of Korean-related stuff. But what have you, I got meself to join one with everything Korean - Kpop, Kdrama, Kvariety... Name it! I cannot contain my happiness even up to now, especially since we got 2nd place! This was during the 1st Kpop Convention in CDO, by the way.

This definitely made me realize I'm a K fangirl through and through. I realize it MORE. Hahaha fine

Joining CDO Bloggers

I knew about the organization from way, way back. I think they even did a presentation in my school but I never really thought that I'd join and all. For me, it was just personal blogging / documentation. Then I got to follow a local travel and lifestyle blogger who has the same name as me - Pearl of The Wandering Dreamer. I eventually found out she's part of CDO Bloggers and blah blah blah. I took an interest, for short.

I'd say I'm an independent woman (lels) but I'm also clingy. So if I wanna venture into something new, I usually ask friends out to do it with me - I'm of that kind. Hihi but in 2017, I was seriously contemplating on applying for membership and doing it alone. ON MY OWN. I pondered on the cliche "I want to do this for myself. I want to come out of my shell." That drama. Haha and so I did~

Getting an email for the interview was exciting but I struggled to a decision because I feel shy in general and interviews stress me out!!! Lels fast forward, I'm now part of CDO Bloggers! I made it, yall! Charot

My first event with them was in Gringo and I will never forget~ Overall, I was amazed at everything ("Ooh, so this is what it feels like to be invited to these things") and starstruck! I STILL CAN'T BELIEVE I GOT TO INTERACT WITH DAVID GUISON (among others) AND I GOT TO HUG HIM TOO AHDJHSJDHSKHWM

I'm still getting the hang of it all - meeting and befriending the other bloggers, being approachable and amiable to brands / staff / everyone... Because it's different already when you're blogging for yourself ONLY and blogging na for partnerships, etc. I'm still blogging for personal purpose, of course, but doing it beyond that now is another sense of fulfillment~

Winning 6th place in a photography contest

October had me joining the 10th Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk. I was actually pretty hesitant to enter because I felt so small compared to all the guys, not to mention my Fuji X-A2 doesn't have a viewfinder. I don't know! I just felt that I'm such a newbie. Hihi but since Angel was there, I was able to brave up.

After the walk, we were told to submit 2 photos for exhibit (in Centrio and Gaisano Mall, imagine~) and for the local contest. And what a shock, this girl actually won!!? I mean, the awarding ceremony was on a Sunday but I went for support, new friendship and all, then I won?? What sorcery!? You do feel my disbelief and surprise, right?

Truly grateful to sir Clement Dampal, all the sponsors, all the photographers I'm privileged to know...

Joining Camera Club of Cagayan de Oro

And in relation, I was able to join another passion org! After the photowalk was the formation of the Camera Club of Cagayan de Oro and I became one of the pioneering members. It's still surreal being surrounded by master photographers. I don't get to go learn and explore photography with them a lot because work... Huhu well, to more photos and more bayot poses? Hahaha

Rocking bangs for the first time

This may not be a big deal for people, but it's such for me. As a curly-haired girl, I was always told in salons that I can't have bangs because they'll stray / won't look good. But there I was, feeling fearless... So, tada! I had bangs and I'm loving it!

It's not always good... They get so unruly and those are the times I kinda regret doing it to myself but most days, I'm glad. Like on the photo, I think my bangs carry magic even. And they're pretty much good conversation starters! Or people just like teasing me about them

Buying another dream camera - Fujifilm XT10

Yall, this wasn't planned at all. I wanted to buy a camera with a viewfinder but I constantly thought, "I'll save and buy in 2018". Little did I know, it'd be a year early! This is secondhand so it's not as expensive like a brand new one. I bought it via XPPH Shop - legit Facebook group if you're looking into Fujifilm products. Still have to be cautious though~

I'm finding it awesome but I'm yet to explore more of its features. Just kyaaaa

Having new precious friends - JALP

These 3 folks just entered my life in 2017 but it's always a blast when I'm with them. It's ironic and funny that I was already able to go out of town with them, like I haven't even done so with college friends. Haha our extended Camiguin trip is definitely memorable, lezz travel again!!!

How was JALP formed, you ask? Hmm, there was this event in Centrio and only the 4 of us showed up. Hahaha we had dinner, talked and the rest is history. Sappyyy. Anyhoo, we haven't seen each other lately because busy holidays are busy. Catch up soon?

Having my "plot twist"

This meme is like super popular... "Where's my plot twist, 2017??" It came. I'm overwhelmed. I cannot share details as of now (much more pictures) because it's still in the early stages but good news has come to my life just before the year ended. Honestly, I didn't wish for it last year. It has been my constant prayer but with all the personal goals I had in mind, this was just pushed back. I didn't care. No chos. So cherry on top, this one. Let it last, Lord ♡

Feeling blessed and loved as I welcome 2018 is just remarkable. It was #Patience2017 and now I declare this year as #Fulfillment2018~ I'm fulfilled at this point in time but I have more desires and dreams yet to come true. I started by having a planner so I'm able to be more efficient on stuff and also to store memories of my days. What more can I say? 2018 BE MY YEAR AND YOUR YEAR!!!


  1. Happy birthday, Pearl~ Seems like a good year for pjcaboodle!!!

    PS:You have such lovely photos. <3


  2. Happy Birthday Pearly :)

  3. Hey Pearl! Happy Birthday :) I hope I'll meet you soon in one of the CDO Blogger events :)



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