My daughter Bea turned 10 years old last June 5. We tried to keep the celebration as simple as possible but, as parents, my husband and I take our little girl’s dreams very seriously. You will recall that Bea’s 9th birthday last year was a tribute to her most favorite celebrity of all, Taylor Swift. Then early this year, around February, it was officially announced that Ms. Swift was set to stage the Manila leg of her RED Concert Tour on June 6, a day after my little girl’s birthday. So what could we, poor parents, do?
Well, of course, I eagerly lined up for concert tickets the moment they went on sale. It was last March 7, a day before my 40th birthday. I was in SM Mall of Asia‘s concert ticket counter at around ten minutes past the mall opening and there were about 10 to 12 persons ahead of me in the queue. It was such a nerve-wracking experience as the much-coveted tickets got sold out in less than 2 hours! Fortunately, I was able to secure two VIP tickets for me and Bea. I was just as thrilled as she was!
Fast-forward to June 5, 2014 — the day of Bea’s 10th birthday. The “theme” was her top ten favorite things at the moment (including John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars). We invited her barkada to afternoon snacks at the Hard Rock Cafe Makati in Glorietta. It’s such a cool place to dine at because it offers kid’s meals for ages 10 and below.
Naturally, I brought in a cake because, what’s a birthday without one? I want to try a different cake-maker every year, and this year I decided to order from PH Bakehouse. PH stands for Project Happiness, but it might as well be a patriotic name for a proudly Pinoy online cake shop. I’ve known the homebaker, Iris, for years as an online friend and I really wanted to show my support for her business but I was hesitant to order a cake from her because she’s based in Cavite and I was afraid that I’d have difficulty with the pick-up. Good thing I inquired because I learned that SM Sucat is one of her pick-up points, and it’s very accessible from our house. This 6-inch custom-made chocolate cake covered with fondant was very well-crafted and scrumptious, too. Bea was so delighted, she ate the cake for days.
After getting full at the Hard Rock Cafe, the girls went on a group movie date in Glorietta Cinema. You see, it was the opening day for The Fault in Our Stars, the tearjerker movie, so I treated Bea and her friends plus one chaperone to the movie. (I guess the universe conspired to make this birthday one of the most expensive celebrations to date.) Bea is such a huge fan of the book and now, because of it, she has added Amsterdam to her list of dream travel destinations. Guess who cried her eyes out in the movie house? Yes, it was me.
It was such a fun day but the celebration didn’t end there. The next day, June 6, we checked in at Microtel Hotel Mall of Asia, which is a stone’s throw away from the MOA Arena, the venue of the RED concert. The hotel is really nice and wholesome, perfect for weekend family getaways. Everyone in the staff was so courteous and friendly, they even let us check in earlier than usual. The food at the hotel’s in-house Millie’s Restaurant is also very good.
The concert was slated for 8:00 p.m. and by 6:30 p.m. we were all set to go. Bea’s friend Andy also went with us and they both could not contain their excitement. For my daughter Bea, it was her first major concert experience and I wanted it to be nothing short of spectacular.
The show actually started at exactly 9 o’clock, and as soon as the lights went down, pandemonium ensued. Seeing Taylor Swift in the flesh was a dream-come-true for my little girl and even I was awed and mesmerized by the beautiful superstar the entire night. She’s like a real-life Barbie doll, but so much better because she can sing, dance and entertain us with the songs she’s written. Taylor Swift is a such a sweet young lady and a phenomenal performer and she rightly deserves all her success in the music business. Here are two of my favorite snapshots from the concert —
Then Bea found this photo on Twitter (full credit and big thanks to the owner), which captured her story that night: she was close enough to touch her idol but the security personnel stopped her. At least, she has this photo to show for it —
Well, it was still a wonderful night and a very unforgettable concert experience for Bea. It showed her that it’s always good to dream and that anything is possible. Even though you don’t always get what you wish for, dreams are what keep us going. And although she wasn’t able to touch Taylor Swift‘s hand, Bea’s 10th birthday weekend was still awesome!
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” — Eleanor Roosevelt