catalyst case waterproof case

Take your phone underwater with Catalyst!

catalyst waterproof case

We just got from our holidays and we were most of the time in the water. Beaches, pools, repeat. I’ve always wanted to take photos of the kids while they’re swimming – aren’t they the happiest when they’re in the water?

Pool selfie, anyone?


But alas, it’s always a risk to take a (normal, non-waterproof camera) or my phone near the water. I am a klutz, and the question of “what if my camera/phone falls?” does not apply to me because, it will surely fall!

Going to the Maldives with a waterproof phone case is only but logical. I mean, how can you not want to take videos like this?


I used the Catalyst waterproof, drop proof all weather case because I wanted the freedom to take my iPhone anywhere, especially during this vacation.

And I know what you’re thinking: is it really safe? My experience says, yes! My husband even took my iPhone with the waterproof case underwater during snorkeling and my phone is still alive now.

catalyst case waterproof case

My Catalyst waterproof iPhone case comes with a wrist lanyard – that wrist strap that looks like a parachute. This awesome nifty thing not only keeps the phone secured to your wrist as you swim, snorkel, etc, it also keeps the phone afloat! Because no matter how waterproof your case is, it’s meaningless if it’s lost on the bottom of the ocean or lake. Awesome, or what??

But again, how can I be sure my phone will be really ok?, you ask.

I HEAR YOU! I was asking myself this so many times too.

The case comes with a very detailed instruction with images to show the steps required when encasing your phone. The steps are fairly simple and easy to follow.

I found it very helpful that you can test the case for waterproof trustworthiness without risking your phone. Just assemble it, close it and dip into a small bucket of water. I placed a glass of water on top of the case to make sure it stays down. After 30 minutes, check the case. If there are no water bubbles, that means it is fully secure and no water can enter and cause damage to your phone.

I know, it’s a leap of faith!

over water hammock with Catalyst

But the verdict – it works! And I LOVE it! It is a very practical solution for days when we are heading to the beach, or anywhere near or in the water.  The Catalyst case is not only designed to be waterproof to 5 meters (16.4 ft) and to meet military standards for drops up to 2 meters (6.6 ft).

I got my Catalyst case online but they said it’s available at stores like Abu Dhabi Duty Free, Gridz Direct, iStore, Ace, Carrefour, Dubai Duty Free, Emax, iStyle, Jumbo Electronics, Plug Ins, Sharaf DG and Virgin Megastore (but the branch in Dubai Mall said they don’t have it when I went there).

How to teach a toddler to smile for the camera?

There are 3,000 photos on my iPhone. With Ben smiling in it? Maybe 0.001%.

Benjamin is a happy baby but when you see his pictures, you wouldn’t think he is. He looks at the camera in that pensive kind of way. He stares at it and the idiot who always make funny stunts and high pitched voice desperate to make him smile.

Most of the time, the smiles come from the people around me. I know I look silly trying so hard.

It’s HARD to get a good picture of toddlers, and you can’t expect the perfect eye-contact and a cherubic smile every time you try. Some days it just doesn’t happen. The “some days” somehow became everyday.

I have given up on trying to make him smile for the camera.

But last night, I attempted again and … it happened.

He stared, eased up, looked at my face and copied it. Bless.

Here are some great suggestions on how to get your toddler to smile for the camera. I will definitely use some soon!

Oh and just to show how it is very easy to make him laugh – only takes a finger and I’m not even tickling him!

(Just ignore my random talking. Ok, thanks, bye!)

Caution to keep your cameras safe (when you’re in Dubai)

I took my friend who travelled all the way to Dubai from Japan, to Jumeirah Beach Park last January 1st. We were tired and sleepy from our late night New Year’s eve gathering but I figured, she came all the way here so she deserves to see the beautiful beach so we went despite our eyes only half open.

We brought a mat and lay it down in the sand – we had no plan to swim as the water is too cold at this time of the year. The next moment when I looked at her, she was fast asleep, right there in the wide open. I took a walk bringing along my camera, started to take photos of the sunset, the birds, the sea and some kids playing in the sand.


I thought the sunset was lovely, but then there were men in the background and my exposure was bad.

Few of the photos I took that afternoon:




I had a very nice time until I felt someone touching my shoulders.


A shirtless man with very hairy torso, in dark glasses, red shorts, with wide smile came to me, obviously having an agenda on his mind.

“What are you doing?”, he said, pointing at my camera.

At this point I almost froze. I know the rules and regulations written at the beach entrance.


It’s a little vague because people actually go to the beach armed with cameras and I have taken lots and lots of pictures of us in the beach without any problems. Actually, cameras and photo taking is allowed. What is not, is photo taking of OTHER people you don’t know. Weird I know, but I understand perfectly, if this rule is not implemented, all the men would have a new hobby of following women in bikinis on the beach (trust me there are sooo many of them on the beaches of Dubai!) and clickety-click away their fantasies.

The shirtless man continued, “Put the camera away. It is not allowed.”

I had no point to argue that I was only taking photos of the sunset or some children (not mine). I apologized and walked away – you bet it was the fastest walk I had in my whole life. I was panting. Imagine brisk walking in the sand!

I went back to my sleeping friend and told her we’ll pack up. She was drowsy, half-asleep but very obedient or was too tired to argue. In a few minutes we were out of the beach park. Whew. It was close. I have heard stories of cameras being confiscated.

But not my camera, dammit! This one I’ve been wanting for so long and finally got just last summer, the one I can’t go out without!