Welcome Readers!

Welcome to the Mystic Blog of the only Mystic Nymph! I hope you have a blast reading my thoughts, and I hope you drop by again!


I'll let you in a little revelation about my favorite usernames in my virtual sites. First is about my Mikimoto Angel pen name. Mikimoto is a famous brand of pearl accessories in America. I first saw that brand in Vogue Magazine. I got mesmerized by that label, and I thought of using it. I just added Angel from my name "Angela". Thus, the formation of Mikimoto Angel.

For my other pen name Mystic Nymph, the word mystic really came from the show Mystic Knights of Tir Na Nog. I used to be so hooked to that show. I am also obsessed with mythologies, and nymphs are mythical creatures depicted as beautiful young women who are considered as guardians of objects and places in nature. Thus, the evolution of Mystic Nymph.

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Friday, July 29, 2011

Something Very Short: My Goofy Man

I love you!

Something short again, because my mind is still in a state of calamity. Anyway, I posted about my boyfriend and I's love story four months ago, March 4, 2011. The article's called The Mystic Boyfriend. Some of you haven't read it yet, so I'm going to post a part of it here, just in case you don't have time to open another tab. Here it goes:

...Ciovic is a man who deals with troubles and trials in a cheerful way. It’s not that he doesn’t take things seriously, he just don’t like sulking over the dark times of his life. He doesn’t want things to get more difficult by having a bad temper. He thinks calmly for solutions while managing to make me happy as well. He gives everyone a hearty laugh with his cute antics even when he himself is undergoing distress. He relaxes everyone’s nerves just by goofing off. He thinks of other people’s happiness more than himself. With that, I can say he’s truly my superman! As what Robert Fulghum said in his book, “His love was life to me!”
He’s sweet, gentle, undemanding, kind, persevering, in other words, he’s the best! I am a moody type of girlfriend, and I admire his patience in keeping up with me eventhough I get so rude to him at times. I also appreciate him for not taking my pieces of advice to him badly. He takes them as something that could make him better. He also does anything I ask of him. He makes sure to do everything he can just to give me the things that make me smile. He’s generous, and he never fails to include me in his plans. He treats me as his wife and his girlfriend as one... 

Here are two funny videos of him created three years ago. I hope you enjoy watching his extreme goofiness. That's one of the things that made me get hooked to him. What a strong word, eh?

Postscript: I'm having a problem embedding the videos here. I think there's something wrong with YouTube. The screen just won't show, so I'm going to give you the links instead. Here are they: Ciovic the Singing Zaido on YouTube and Ciovic aka The Mask of Zaido. Watch and laugh. Much love!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Something Very Short (SVS): Photoscape

I'm in a troubled state of mind for weeks already, and I can't seem to focus. I have a lot of things to accomplish at school - my thesis defense which will be on August 25, my STS "book review" report by first week of September, and the most dreaded papers and exams. What a burden! I sure can't wait for this semester to end. I hope it's already October. And because I want to steer clear from all those unnecessary problems like "what should I say for this particular blog post?", I've thought of coming up with articles that are just short every now and then up until I'm ready to write long and substantial blog posts again. I actually plan of joining Davao Blogger's Blog Caravan, but then I decided not to because of some academic and time constraints. Hopefully, I can write for them next time.

Today's topic on Something Very Short (SVS) is about one of my favorite photo editing software -- the Photoscape. I like it a lot because it's very user friendly. You don't have to read all those manuals and tutorials thoroughly because it's made for convenience. It's best for novice shutterbugs who want to fix and enhance their photos in an easy but pretty way. It won't definitely take much of your time learning the how-to's of this fun application. My favorite Photoscape features are the Page, Combine, Animated GIF, Text + Item, and most especially the Film Effects. So, here's a finished product of a shot I edited using Photoscape. I am sorry I forgot the effects I used to come up with this look. Well, I'm pretty sure you're good at exploring stuffs, you may want to see for yourself how I did it.

Mikee, my youngest sister, owns this doll. Her name is Roxanne.

Postscript: Please bear with my dull and boring blog template in the mean time. It won't be like that for long, I promise. I will be fixing it as soon as possible. And oh by the way, I just found this very helpful write-up by the Etsy Blog Team while I was searching about Photoscape. It's called "How to Create a free Blog Header with PhotoScape." Perfect! Now I have a solution to my itsy-bitsy blog issue. Cheers to Photoscape!

Do you patronize Photoscape as well?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Most-Loved Shots of Myself

This was taken at Cafe Demitasse.

This was taken during our school's Deviance Day.

I love Bollywood Fashion a great deal.

This was taken during our Semana BACA.

This was taken at Jack's Ridge.

This was taken when I was still second year college.

This was taken during my boyfriend and I's 3rd Anniversary.

Taken at Datcom (An internet shop slash resto bar at school)

This was taken at Punta del Sol.

This photo is what I used as my site's favicon. Nice eh?

Here are some Basic Information about myself:

I am Katrina Angela Cruz Castro. I was born on June 8, 1990. I live in Davao City, Philippines but I was born in General Santos City.

I have three sisters and I'm the eldest, but I feel like I'm the youngest. I'm the black sheep, but I don't intend to come off that way. 

I study BA Communication Arts major in Speech and Corporate Communication at the University of the Philippines Mindanao.

I have interest in Arts, Literature and Music. I like  Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism. I like Creative-Nonfiction Writing. I like rock music.

I have a published work online which was also published in Sun Star Davao two years ago. You can check it out here in Dagmay

I am in a three years and ten months old relation with Ciovic David Sol Balabbo. Our anniversary date is September 7. That's two moths to go.

You can connect with me through my e-mail address: mikimotoangel@gmail.com, through my Facebook Page, through Twitter and of course here in my site.

...That's all. Thank you! :-D

Monday, July 25, 2011

Some of my Favorite Films

Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon works to solve a murder and prevent a terrorist act against the Vatican.

In future Britain, charismatic delinquent Alex DeLarge is jailed and volunteers for an experimental aversion therapy developed by the government in an effort to solve society's crime problem... but not all goes to plan.

A murder inside the Louvre and clues in Da Vinci paintings lead to the discovery of a religious mystery protected by a secret society for two thousand years -- which could shake the foundations of Christianity.

A talented young boy becomes torn between his unexpected love of dance and the disintegration of his family.

I made a Movie Review about this, and it's here.

It's nine years after Jesse and Celine first met; now, they encounter one another on the French leg of Jesse's book tour.

Forrest Gump, while not intelligent, has accidentally been present at many historic moments, but his true love, Jenny, eludes him.

A young girl discovers her father has an amazing talent to bring characters out of their books and must try to stop a freed villain from destroying them all, with the help of her father, her aunt, and a storybook's hero.

History of Apple and Microsoft.

Five high school students, all different stereotypes, meet in detention, where they pour their hearts out to each other, and discover how they have a lot more in common than they thought.

The details of these movies are courtesy of The Internet Movie Database. Images used are not intended for copyright infringement.

Have you seen all these? What are your top favorite films?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

What I Just Learned From STS Class

STS means Science Technology and Society (MST 4). This is a subject wherein we're expected "to understand and appreciate the character and functions of science and technology and their interrelationships with society from a historical perspective; to be able to anticipate and comprehend the impacts and implications of scientific and technological developments to structure of societies and to day-to-day living; and lastly, to understand the key role of science and technology in social equity." - Prof. Verna Marie Monsanto-Hearne.

Before I go on with the things I would like to share to you, I want you to watch this heart-wrenching video of Judson Levasheff who suffered from Krabbe Disease. See how inspiring his life is to everyone.

"Krabbe disease is a rare, genetic, incurable, terminal disorder. It is one of several known leukodystrophies: genetic diseases that progressively destroy the white matter of the brain." Read more about this desolating sickness here. If want to learn more things about Judson's life, this is the site you must visit -- The Story of Judson.

Upon watching this video, I couldn't help but shed some tears. Judson remained bubbly despite his condition. You see, every parent wants a healthy and normal child. It's just sad to know that a smart kid like Jud only lived for a short while in this world. I would like to see it in a positive light because if I were Jud's parent, I wouldn't want him to suffer any longer even though it means losing him forever. My happy memories of him will forever be in my heart and mind.

This sad truth leads me to what I've just learned from my STS class. The last reporter talked about Genetic Testing. It is a DNA-based test that identifies changes in chromosomes, genes and proteins. Furthermore, Ixion Biotech explains that genetic tests are done to examine the DNA molecules themselves. Scientists try to find modified and mutated sequences in the DNA to explain the different diseases and conditions. We may wish to be tested if:

There is a family history of one specific disease.

They show symptoms of a genetic disorder,

They are concerned about passing on a genetic problem to their children.

There are also five types of Genetic Testing: (1) Carrier Screening for couples (2) Prenatal Screening for the fetus (3) Forensics/Identity Screening (4) Late On-set Disorder for adult diseases and the most important, (5) the Newborn Screening for infants. We've found out that there is actually an "Act Promulgating a comprehensive policy and a national system for ensuring newborn screening" here in the Philippines, and it's called Republic Act No. 9288 or The Newborn Screening System Law. This video will explain to us "what newborn screening is, its purpose, the test procedure, and what parents need to do if retesting is necessary." This video is a property of March of Dimes.

Newborn Screening (NBS) should be practiced for every newborn within three days of his birth to know what has to be done if in case the infant has certain harmful or potentially fatal disorders like in Jud's case, the Krabbe Disease. This test involves sticking the foot of the child for blood. With this blood test, doctors can often tell whether newborns have certain conditions that could eventually cause problems. Babies need to undergo NBS for five main disorders, namely: Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase (G6PD) Deficiency, Congenital Hypothyroidism, Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, Galactosemia and Phenylketonuria. Check out how these diseases can affect the babies normal processes and functions here.

Spoken like a geek? Thanks to these virtual references:

This is my take on Genetic Testing. I firmly believe in this test's promise to help predict risks of future diseases and to assist in choosing the proper medication or diagnosis. It is also an integral part of everyone's health care. However, in a third world country like the Philippines, I think Genetic Testing is still a hype of the rich. If we talk about the present time, only the well-off families can afford this. How about the financially disadvantaged? We all know that scientific tests require huge amount of money. They're way too costly, as they may also need re-testing if necessary. The impoverished ones also have the right for a healthy life, and monetary constraints shouldn't get in the way. My point? Affordable genetic tests should be supported by our government. Needless to say, they must also ensure the safety and quality of Genetic Testing. With that, I rest my case. Bow.

The visuals used in this post are not intended for copyright infringement.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Name Katrina

Because I'm utterly in a rut at this very hour, I did some not-so-intensive research on something very trivial or should I say, nonsense. It's about my name. I know I could've done my thesis (bold and large letters for emphasis) instead, but I chose not to. I'm a huge procrastinator, and it's maybe because I still have a month to prepare for my defense. Still a lame reason, I know. Throw some profanities at my face in a flash! Delaying tactics for a far more important duty is never rational. But you see, I know myself. I know I can handle things under pressure. Did I just sound like cheering myself? By any means, let's get back to the topic. Here are some facts about my name that I chanced upon the web:

According to a source, the name Katrina is actually a variant of the name Katherine. I'm disappointed. Why can't it be otherwise? Kidding. Its meaning is Pure Maiden, and its origin is belived to be Greek. You've read it right, folks. That says a lot about my personality. I'm meek and reserved, and people say I could be an example of a dalagang Pililipina (I don't know how to translate that term to English, my apologies). I claim that to be true. I love my name now more than ever!

According to the ever helpful online encyclopedia (Wikipedia), Katrina has five contents. These are the People, Meteorology, Places, Other uses and See also (whatever). One of the popular namesakes I have is the Bollywood actress, Katrina Kaif. She's adorable, I have to agree. I just how I'm as stunning as she is. Like her on Facebook. Friends, stop calling me Katrina Halili. It's quite annoying, alright? Call me Katrina Kaif instead. LoL! Here's my favorite photo of her.

Additional information about Katrina: "'Katrina and the Waves' was a 1980s band, who won the Eurovision song contest in 1997 with their song 'Love shine a light'. The 'Katrina' of the band was lead singer Katrina Leskanich. Katrina (Kate) is also a character in Stephenie Meyer's popular series "Twilight". In Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow", Katrina Van Tassel is the love interest of school teacher Ichabod Crane." I got this data from this side of the web.

On the darker side of my name comes the catastrophic tropical storm that devastated New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast in the year 2005 -- the Hurricane Katrina. I was third year high school then, and my classmates used to tease me that I'm destructive. I know it's only a friendly joke, not a petty taunt. Here's one photo that showed the huge impact of the said uncontrollable tempest.

Here are some other uses of my name. I'm gonna show photos rather than texts, so you don't have to read further.

My mother gave me this little bag. I don't know where she got this.

Katrina and the Waves were an English pop rock band formed in the 1980s.

This is USS Katrina (SP-1144), a United States Navy patrol vessel in commission from 1917 to 1919.

Katrina is a Swedish language novel published in 1936, written by Sally Salminen.

Here's a music video from The Black Lips, and it's called "Oh! Katrina". It's a part of the Official Soundtrack of the 2010 motion picture, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.

Those are the things that I've scarfed down about my precious name. Do you also marvel at the history and those itsy bitsy matters of your name? You might want to try what I've done too. Much love!

The visuals used in this post are not intended for copyright infringement.


With Ria and Troy. On our way to College of Science and Mathematics.
With Ann and Mai.

With CJ, Ria and Mai.

The SUPER SENIORS. We felt awkward taking this shot.

I look so stupid, right?

I said, "Fire Exiiit" istead of "Smiile".

I so love these girls. Kisses to my sists!

We felt like a tourist in our own school.

Our Clean and Green Oblation. UP Naming Mahal. Pamantasang Hirang.
My beloved friend, Charina Jane, dropped by at school yesterday to renew some books at the library and of course, to bond with us. We actually took these shots using her camera, but I edited it using my favorite online photo editor Pixlr-o-matic. Too bad, Shimea and Lavinia weren't able to smile and laugh with us. I miss my Quitter's Club sisters so bad. I hope next time we'll be complete again.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Must-Watch Asian Films

3 IDIOTS: As I searched about this Bollywood movie I found out that it was actually adapted from the novel Five Point Someone by Chetan Bhagat.

MIND GAME: It is about the struggling comic artist Robin Nishi in his adventure with his object of affection Myon and her sister, Yan.

In the Realm of Senses: This is a true story of a Japanese woman called Sada Abe.

The Joy Luck Club: Through a series of flashbacks, four young Chinese women born in America and their respective mothers born in feudal China, explore their past.

"Nanking" tells the story of the rape of Nanking, one of the most tragic events in history.

Memoirs of a Geisha: Nitta Sayuri reveals how she transcended her fishing-village roots and became one of Japan's most celebrated geisha.

Samsara: A spiritual and sensual film which centers on the desire and destiny of a man of sacred mental disciplines who is struggling to attain enlightenment by renouncing mundane aspirations and yearning.

Here are other Asian films that I still haven't watched just yet, but I'm looking forward to get a dose of them when I have ample time for extra curricular duties:

Spirited Away: In the middle of her family's move to the suburbs, a sullen 10-year-old girl wanders into a world ruled by gods, witches, and monsters; where humans are changed into animals; and a bathhouse for these creatures.

2046: He was a writer. He thought he wrote about the future but it really was the past. This movie stars Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Ziyi Zhang and Faye Wong

In the Mood for Love: A man and a woman move in to neighboring Hong Kong apartments and form a bond when they both suspect their spouses of extra-marital activities. This movie stars Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Maggie Cheung and Ping Lam Siu.

The Bird People in China: A salaryman and yakuza are each sent by their bosses to a remote Chinese village but discover more then they expected. This movie stars Masahiro Motoki, Renji Ishibashi and Mako.

The Emperor and the Assassin: In pre-unified China, the King of Qin sends his concubine to a rival kingdom to produce an assassin for a political plot, but as the king's cruelty mounts she finds her loyalty faltering. This movie stars Li Gong, Fengyi Zhang and Zhou Sun.

What Asian films have piqued your interest the most?

  The images used in this post are not intended for copyright infringement.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Chronicles of the Harry Potter Fever

Would you still be surprised if I say, the 7th and last installment of the Harry Potter saga is a trending topic all over the world? Of course, you wouldn't. Am I correct or I am correct? I believe it's nonsense mentioning it, because HP has been a household subject for almost nine long years already. Both fanatics and detractors can attest to its magical fame and glory that caused mass hysteria every time. All got smitten to how the story of the boy-who-lived unfolds. Harry Potter has indeed cast a spell on the whole world with more than 250 million books sold in more than 200 countries worldwide.

Almost every soul in the entire globe got totally Potter-crazed. By that I mean for an instance, the HP mania has caused those enthusiasts to throw around words like "muggles", "mudblood", "quidditch" and whatnot. This bewitching craze has always been a little out of control, and that's a clear fact. Die-hard fans got so frantic in familiarizing every single detail about the life of Ron, Hermione, Harry and all the other characters of the story. I, for one, became a fan but sad to say, my fondness for it got out of my system. It had already died a natural death, or maybe it's just on hiatus. I don't know. It's quite ironic, because my ring tone is still the Harry Potter theme.

Most of the world are suckers for HP, while I'm slowly becoming not. I'm not alone, and I'm quite sure about that. Tons of people experience having incredibly anti-social moments whenever they get to read HP books. How come I'm not as addicted as them? Maybe the HP magic got nullified with the state of mind I have. Kidding aside! On a serious note, if I were to evaluate myself as a fan I would say I'm just below average. With my insufficient knowledge on the story, I can conclude that I will never pass for an HP geek. I haven't even hit its books yet. Well, I've read a few pages from the Sorcerer's Stone, but still, that won't ever make me a full-fledged advocate.

For a few moments, let me go back in time when I was still diagnosed of Harry Potter fever. Sit back, relax and REWINDIO! Absurd, I've found a chance to show off what little I know about the Hogwarts' spells. Okay, let's cut that out. I only rely my narrow range of supernatural information from the motion pictures. I know that's just quite lame of me. I don't want to sound as if I'm baffled about that, so let me get this straight. I really don't have great aspirations of becoming a part of the hugely rabid HP fans club. That way, I save myself from unnecessary obsession.

Did I just sound like I'm sour graping? My apologies for that. I don't want to come off as if I'm high-minded or something. I guess I'm bitter because I used to keep up with my friends who are so into HP. I used to be at par with them with the advent of the Internet. I used to know a lot of character names, and terms in the book/movie, but now I can barely remember everything. But that's not a big deal for me, because going to great lengths just to arm myself with all the HP trivia isn't everything to me. Although I have to admit that I once collected things that are related to HP, like pictures and quotable quotes from the movie and the book.

I've had a dose of this saga until Order of the Phoenix already, which I got to watch in the special screening done by the Order of De Molay Davao Chapter last 2007. My liking for HP has also ended there. My brain got all mixed up with the flow of the story. I got bored as a result. I lost my interest simply because I lost track of the important details of the story. There, I said it for honesty's sake. I don't want to watch it again and again let alone reading all those HP books just to fully grasp everything.

Harry Potter has just come to its finality, yet the undying support of the people who have grown to love it still remains. I may think for now that its fame is getting overrated, but I'm hoping that the thought of it won't linger long enough on my mind. I believe my pessimistic stand towards HP is just due to the fact that I've missed out a lot. I have a feeling that the former HP fan in me will get back on track once I get the chance to re-run the saga. I have to admit that I still have the desire to know how it'll all end, but I'm just trying not to let it show.

That's my Harry Potter experience. How was yours all along? I would love to hear about them. Share your thoughts! Smiles.

The images used in this post are not intended for copyright infringement.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Bollywood Fashion

Fashion is one of  the things that I just can't last a day without. I feel quite uncomfortable whenever I don't get to dress up. That's one of the reasons why I hate PE. I don't like wearing shirt and jogging pants. I go all the rage when it comes to fashion. I love New York fashion, Korean Fashion, Philippine Fashion, Vintage Fashion and whatnot. The catch is that I don't have all kinds of outfit to support my sense of style. I don't have a wardrobe empire, but hey, that's not what fashion is all about right? Fashion minus style is nothing. As someone says it, someone with style doesn't need fashion. But of course, who would say no to a good number of fashion finds? I still don't have that much possessions yet, but I believe I'll get there someday. God willing! I'll be a good girl from here on out, I promise. Giggles!

Thoughts about Bollywood Fashion has been clouding my right side of the brain lately. According to Aparna Chandra, Bollywood is definitely one of the largest fashion guider as a vast majority of public is influenced by Bollywood trends such as clothes, jewelry and so forth. I totally have a special liking towards Bollywood Fashion. My fetish for it began last year when I bought an Indian-inspired skirt from a vintage shop. I wore it once in one of my outfit posts before. I still don't want to wear it again, because it's one of my special pieces in my very limited closet. Just in case you want to take a look at my Bollywood get up, here it is.

Original Post: Going Bollywood on a Wednesday

Ehow Style teaches us girls on how to dress up like a Bollywood star. The things we need are:

  • Jeans
  • Button-down shirt
  • Sunglasses
  • Watch
  • Gel
  • Sari blouse
  • Sari petticoat
  • Sari
  • Bangles
  • Earrings
  • Anklet
  • Bindi forehead jewel
  • Sandals

These are the helpful tips I've gathered from them. I'm not in the mood to paraphrase now, so let me just quote what eHow said.

  • Prepare to show some skin - Wear a cropped, fitted, belly exposing top with a low neckline that displays your décolletage in it's best light. As always, a push-up bra is a great idea. Pair the top with a long, ankle-length flowy skirt made out of silk or a material with some kind of brocade on it and you're good to go.
  • Wear bright colors and jewel tones - Bollywood is all about vibrant, beautiful colors that stand out. Bollywood outfits are not only colorful, they also frequently combine primary colors like red and green, along with a metallic accent of gold, silver or bronze.
  • Display your hair - If you have long straight hair, you're good to go as is. Give yourself a hot oil hair treatment the night before, wash your hair the day of the party, blow your hair out and you're good to go. If you have short hair, consider a hair accessories that will let you create a mini up-do and then do focus your attention on your make-up and accessories
  • Highlight your eyes and wear a bindi - Use black eye-liner along your top as well as bottom lid and smudge with dark shadow to blend. Don't forget black mascara to lengthen your lashes and make your eyes the focus of attention. 
  • Bring out the bling - Bring out your chunkiest and most glamorous costume jewelry because a Bollywood party is the place to wear it. Jewelry is key in Bollywood so pile on the necklaces, bangles and earrings - you can't go overboard.

Read more here.

Here are some Bollywood-inspired items that I stumbled upon the web. I drool over them so much!

Don't you just love these Bollywood must-haves?

Images used are not intended for copyright infringement.
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