Who are the Expat Bostonians?

Who are the Expat Bostonians?

We lived in Singapore from 2010-2017. We currently live in California, in the US, which is still pretty foreign to our East Coast sensibilities.

Delilah Night author photo

I’m Crystal, the author of the blog.  I’m an author and stay at home mom.  Past work has included teaching grades 3-6, working in the front office of hotels and as a costumed tour guide at the Boston Tea Party Ship and Museum. See my Writing Elsewhere page for links to my non-fiction work. I publish fiction under the pen name Delilah Night (here’s my Amazon Author Page). My first book, Capturing the Moment, was published in 2016.


Ravi is my husband. His work brought us to Singapore…while in Singapore, he worked for a multinational bank, which I refer to as GNB (Goliath National Bank-a reference to the American show “How I met your mother”).


Elanor and Rhiannon are our two daughters, born in 2008 and 2011 respectively. Elanor attends a local primary school, and Rhiannon a private Nursery/Kindergarten school (all schooling before Primary 1 is private).


We arrived in Singapore in 2010 and became Permanent Residents (PR’s) in 2014. We left Singapore in 2010.

Please note that your first comment on my blog will be held for moderation.  After an approved comment, your comments will appear immediately.

Email: expatbostonians [at] gmail [dot] com

Like our Facebook page

Follow me on twitter @crystalgeek78 (although I have not been very active in 2015)

Updating (Written Oct 21, 2015)

I was critically ill in early 2015. There have been a few posts since that time. It is absolutely a goal to begin posting regularly again, but at the moment other commitments (including recovery and paid writing) are taking precedence. I have not abandoned the blog, but I encourage you to sign up to receive an alert when I do post as it is sporadic and inconsistent. Here’s hoping 2016 is kinder to our family than 2015.


We have appeared in the following…

Asia’s Key to Keeping Order: Rules, Rules, Rules by Alyssa Abkowitz (Wall Street Journal, July 24, 2014)–Crystal is quoted

No Need to be Chinese to Celebrate by Zul Othman (The New Paper, Asia One, Feb 4, 2014)–the family is featured

Hundreds Gather for Singapore “Slutwalk” Protest by AP News (Link is to Asian Correspondent, Dec 4, 2011)–Crystal and Rhiannon pictured

 Please contact Crystal Nanavati (expatbostonians [at] gmail [dot] com) for media requests.

I do not publish press releases, and will not print/write your advertorial.  I will consider requests for sponsored content on a case by case basis, and will only promise an honest review (which is not a guarantee of a positive one).



33 Responses to Who are the Expat Bostonians?

  1. Paul Chapman says:

    Good to hear from you. Always nice to get some comments and feedback (well, almost always). You sound like you’ve been around a bit, in the politest possible way. I do indeed have two small ones. One is coming up for three years, the other is 18 months so you can tell I have my hands full! Any recommendations would be more than gratefully received. Having been here just over a week i would bow to your superior knowlege on the subject! Hope you and yours are well, Paul.

  2. paul says:

    Great blog. Can’t help but laugh, it was so well written. I could smell the fear!

  3. Just curious….what’s a “sexuality educator” ?
    Congrats on your baby news! I loved being pregnant….please post about all the delicious food you eat and your glowing skin!

    • Crystal says:

      “Sexuality Educator” is a job description that covers a multitude of sins 🙂 In my case, right now I give a workshop about safe sex every few months, and I’ll be talking about recovering your sexuality post-baby at a local conference here in Singapore in June. I used to write a column for Carnal Nation on sex after becoming a mom before the website closed last October. Eventually, once Wheelie is out and off the breast I’ll be pursuing education to get a PhD in Sexology and a Masters in Social Work (which is a very very long term plan). Hopefully by the time he/she is in school full time I’ll be ready to do my hours of supervised counseling for the MSW. Once all of that is completed, I’d like to open a practice that combines writing and presenting about sex during pregnancy and the post-partum period with individualized counseling for women (and couples) who are pregnant and post-partum. I see the practice expanding to include workshops and help with talking to your kids about sex, as well. I’ve been assured by my US OB/Gyn that in a large US city (and we’re unlikely to ever live anywhere in the US that isn’t one) this sort of practice will thrive. For now, the various part time workshops and writing are enough 🙂

      Unfortunately I’m not among those who love pregnancy, or generally have an easy time of it. So far #2 has been a lot of nausea but only once instance of puking…which is a huge victory, given that by this point with Elanor I’d thrown up so much I’d lost 15 pounds and was on anti-emetic medication. Nor is food a particularly good friend of mine, sorry…it’s all bad smells right now. My skin is more of the “breaking out like crazy” than “glowing” variety right now. But if things stabilize in the second trimester I’d be happy to.

      • Interesting about the sexuality educator. I wish you great success. We are a bit uptight about talking about “sexuality” in the US, but you can see “sex” everywhere. My posts on sex after menopause and estrogen were received with an “eek” by those who are personal friends, but loved by strangers.
        LOL…I hope your 1st trimester is swift!

      • Crystal says:

        We certainly are uptight about sex in the US, but we look positively hedonistic when compared to Singapore. I can’t wait to read your posts about sex after menopause!

        Thanks…3 more weeks and counting.

  4. bookjunkie says:

    I’m cracking up at Wheelie’s hobbies 😉 Loving your awesome about page Crystal and your blog has taught me so much. I can’t overstate it.

    • Crystal says:

      Grin…I should add giving Mommy massive heartburn to those.

      And I feel the same about your blog in return…you open all sorts of wonderful windows to Singapore for me, and it’s with your help (among others) that I’ve gained the small amount of cultural understanding that I have.

  5. Pingback: Crystal on the Straits Times | Singapore Actually

  6. eheiskell says:

    Great blog! I came across it looking for children’s activities. We moved to Singapore from Salem, Ma in December. We are only here until July but I am loving it so far. I have a small blog I have been doing called at http://www.erininthelioncity.com. I have enjoyed reading yours for both ideas on things to do in Singapore with children and writing blogs. Thanks.

    • Crystal says:

      Welcome! It’s so cool to have another Mass native amongst us. Do you know WTFMate? She’s another Mass native who lived in Australia and is now here in SG, too. I LOVE Salem. It’s so much fun to wander, and I love the Peabody Essex Museum.

      Enjoy…if your kids are close in age to Ellie, we’re around for playdates…right up the street from Amazonia at Great World City.

      • eheiskell says:

        My husband and I try to support the PEM as much as possible. Salem is an interesting place to live.

        I would love to meet for a play date. I have a son who is 5 and a daughter who is 2. Neither is in school so we have a flexible schedule. We are in a serviced apartment off Orchard Road. My email is aeheiskell@yahoo.com if that is an easier way to communicate.

      • Crystal says:

        I’ll absolutely drop you a line in the next few days!

  7. Kathryn says:

    Hi Crystal, I have been a long time follower of your blog, well before my family (me, husband and 18 month old son) moved to Singapore in January. The variety of topics that you cover is incredible.

    I am also like you and not keen on having a helper. I like my privacy too much and besides, where would store our bikes if we had to use that space for its intended purpose!

    I know that you went through a terrible time in the aftermath of the B ordeal. I would have felt the same way. I believe that you now have an adhoc babysitter, how did go about finding them? Is it through an agency? I would greatly appreciate any recommendations.

    Keep up the great work. Like me, there are many out there who enjoy your work but are too shy to let you know.


  8. Just dropped by from the Spore Blog Awards. Welcome to Singapore and glad to have uas part of our community! 😉

  9. Juanita says:

    I just watched your Father’s Day video for your husband. You look gorgeous in Indian outfits! Love stories always make me happy. I ADORE that I saw Ellie (I think) with a Wicked onesie! Your children’s names are beautiful.

    I’m from Singapore but I used to date someone in NH and we spent a lot of time in Boston. I fell in love with the city in that first drive leaving Logan. I go back twice a year, and my relationship with Boston has lasted longer than the relationship with the guy in NH, haha. I was just there in May-June 2012 for some whale-watching and lobster rolls!

    I’d love to make more friends here who understand the vast difference between American culture and Singaporean culture. Want to have lunch some time?

    – Juanita

    • Crystal says:

      Absolutely! We leave Boston to return to Singapore in about 7 hours, so I’ll drop you an email later in the week–we get back just before midnight on Sunday.

  10. Juanita says:

    Awesome, I look forward to it!!

  11. Pingback: I’m Curating @hellofrmsg this week « Expat Bostonians

  12. Ranee says:

    Hi read about your experience with your helper.i liked your frank assessment about the situation and it made good reading.it is indeed sad that the trust and respect you gave to her was abused in such a manner.hope you have better luck the next time but don’t stop being the person you are just because of a bad apple.cheers,ranee

  13. estelle says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience. I am now in the same boat.

  14. Janet says:

    Hi Crystal!

    I enjoyed reading your perspectives of being an expat in Singapore. I was there as a trailing spouse in 2005-2006. In fact, I left my husband of 30 years after that year. I had a great time there in other ways. My ability to handle lots of life change successfully gave me courage that I could handle that change too.

    I’m curious about the relationship shifts and challenges of expats as you see them. What kinds of resources would you or your friends turn to if you were unhappy with your spouse?

    I hope you aren’t experiencing that and I wonder what you think. Thanks!


  15. Lena says:

    Chanced upon your site through random surfing!

    Elanor and my girl were together in the same class during their “Gifted Tots” days! Great to see you here!

  16. viet says:

    great blog. very informative and entertaining. thanks for sharing your knowledge. i’ll be taking my kids (5 and 3 y/o) to woodlands for halloween after reading your blog.

    Quick Question:
    we’re considering a helper mainly to take the kids to the bus pick-up in the morning and drop-off in the afternoon. my wife and i both work and we can’t seem to find before and after school care. are you aware/recommend a provider that can watch the kids before and after school and take them to/from school bus pick-up/drop-off? I prefer not to get a helper just for this need.

    thanks for any insight you can provide.


    • I don’t know of any service that does pre/post school care. Some primary schools do offer after school childcare, though. It’s definitely one of moments where the “everyone has a maid” mindset makes logistics so much harder.

      Enjoy trick or treating!

  17. aragrn says:

    Hi! , I just found your blog accidently while googling benedryl and Singapore. We just moved here in January from Rhode Island. I’ve found what I’ve read so far a) very true and b) super entertaining c) thanks inspiring (I am VERY excited to know Halloween does exist here!). Looking forward to reading more.

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