Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2 0 1 4

goodbye 2014. you won't really be missed... 
hello :) It's weird how every year I can't fathom how another year has gone by. 2014 was a huge year for me: graduation, college, moving, death in the family. So to celebrate and anticipate 2015, here are 14 important factoids, events, and memos that I learned this year.

1. College is a wonderland. Really, I love it so much. It can be tough sometimes to be by yourself in this place you just moved to. I think I was lucky in that Smith is so wonderful, caring, and accommodating. It really feels like I've found a second family within my house community. It's nice to have the freedom to choose your own courses and decide when to do things.

2. Do not mix lights and darks when it comes to alcohol. I learned that quite the hard way. Learn how to hold your drink (I'm still learning that bitter lesson).

3. Be courageous and bold, it might surprise you. Some of my most memorable experiences have happened per chance. At 2am a couple of my housemates went to a local burger place (unironically called Local Burger) and it was a really fun time, laughing at the outside world and some of the ridiculous things guys do.

4. Visit art museums. Really, they're SO COOL. I love being there even for an hour, two hours. There's so much to explore and so much historical culture to take in. I'm definitely going to start visiting the Smith art museum more too. I recently started to going to musical events too and oh my gosh. I used to think it was silly to go to concerts but the energy is so alive!

5. Be silly! I've become familiar with a few new faces by just simply being silly. I bonded with this girl over how excited plants make me in the botanic garden. Some girl and I had a great conversation about hot chocolate in the dining hall. I was sticking my tongue to catch snowflakes and this girl passing by smiled and stuck her tongue out saying, 'me too'. It's funny how these are the things I immediately remember instead of the grades I got or how much time I spent studying for an exam (studying is way important too though, I'm not saying it's not).

6. Everything tastes better late at night. Fact. Ramen parties at 11 should always happen.

7. Keep in touch with people you care about. It might seem intuitive and dumb of me to mention this but really.. it's harder than you think. Sometimes I have to keep reminding myself to call my parents or a skype a friend but it always makes me feel better. I use my computer's calendar a lotttt. Those reminders are pretty great.

8. Do not forget to do laundry. . . laundry buddies (like gym buddies) are a necessity. Laundry nights usually turn into mini dance parties blasting Taylor Swift to drama time complete with face masks so now they're a much more enjoyable thing.

9. Swiffering is really enjoyable. I'm trying to find my own style/refine what I like and what looks good and my room is always undergoing a changing process. I'm getting really into interior decorating and making zines.

10. Short hair should be tried out at least once. Maybe I'm biased because I like short hair. Embrace who you are! I realize I'll never be that girl people always say "whoaa you're like a supermodel! whoaaa" (I've sat next to those girls one too many times). But you know what, I'm okay being a super intelligent (okay maybe that's my ego speaking), hipster, geeky girl who can wear shirts with cats, rainbow zebras, pineapples, etc.

11. Dreams change, and that's okay. For my entire life almost I wanted to go into journalism. Senior year I suddenly wanted to do policy related things. And now I definitely want to do something related to biology, genetic technology, food policy, environmental policy. I'm unsure of the exact path I want for my next four years and that's scary, exciting, liberating all at once.

12. Only buy clothes that you love. It saves you the pain of running out of closet space and a bankruptcy. There are so manyy cool people at Smith. Not that kind of cool you see in stereotypical teen movies but a real kind of cool. They don't care about what the world thinks at all. They're so focused on what they're doing in their own life and their dream. They have their own style and you just take in their cool vibes when they pass by. Hopefully one day some first year will see me pass by the sidewalk and just say "whoaa that girl is too cool."

13. There are very few moments in life where you can dress up, spend hours doing hair and makeup, wear heels that are clearly too tall for you. Cherish them. I really miss getting all dressed up for senior ball. I wish there were more formal parties in college... or even opportunities to wear a nice suit (I miss my short lived debate career).

14. CHERISH 2015!!!! Okay maybe I didn't learn that this year but I know how precious time is. I don't know where half this year went. College really went by like a blur. I'm gonna start writing one thing a day that I appreciated/enjoyed/remembered about each day. Maybe I'll post them here too to keep myself on track. 2014 was kind of a lousy year. . . but I know 2015 can be better. WOOOOOOOOOOOOO. 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

a r t s y

Hello everyoneeee. Guess who is back in the Bay? After a grueling first semester of adjusting, exams, new classes, new friends, and Northampton craziness, I AM BACK HOME. It's so wonderful to be back in my own bed and take showers without shoes on. WONDERFUL. I spent all of today being adventurous and going out with my friend! We had a fantastic day out and it feels like it was just yesterday we last hung out. Due to modern technology, distance is a lot easier to cope with. So I just wanted to share a couple photos from the city that I call home, San Francisco!

beanie shopping 

cream puffs are happiness.
no one can tell me otherwise
(look at that pure shock and excitement)

it's Christmas time xx

have you ever seen a more beautiful palette? 

happy youngjoo 

I cannot wait for what is more to come. happy holidays xx

Monday, December 15, 2014

Sine Curves

Life is kind of like a sin curve. Look at those mesmerizing ups and downs, ups and downs. Whatever comes up must go down and basically I'm at the lowest point anyone can go (hopefully). I feel like there's nothing to look forward to or celebrate in my daily existence. I keep myself barely grounded with thoughts of home but even that weeklong stretch seems too much to overcome.

I don't know what propels me to share the contents of my personal life to random people on the interweb, but here I am. Because ultimately this blog functions as a diary for me and a place for me to come back to reanalyze events after much time has passed. If you don't want the feels, just move along and wait another week for some kind of better post.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Contemporary Art

When I visited the Museum of Fine Arts, I had to sit down and write poetry because I was so overwhelmed with feeling and emotion. I wasn't planning on sharing this poetry ever but the occasion presented itself marvelously. The spoken word poetry club hosted an open mic and invited PHIL KAYE. PHIL KAYE. Can we just take a moment to appreciate that I met PHIL KAYE? Phil Kaye is such a talented poet and it's so different seeing his poetry in person vs just on Youtube. UGH spoken word poetry is alive!! 
So I shared this poem and it was a really good Tuesday night. Tuesday was a really good day <3 

Contemporary Art

you once told me that

the future is here, everything we dreamed of and more
people and technology have begun to exist as one entity
the lack of newspapers, conversation in coffee shops, music with audible lyrics
we carry little boxes that free us from the mundane world
A false sense of connection because we are physically attached to the internet
Inadequate to be just human, our transformation to cyborg is almost complete
the death of culture is imminent, as my mother always said
it seems we as a species have lost the capacity to feel, love, live.

I sit in English class where they tell me that
art is dead, dead as the nail in a coffin, dead as mackerel, dead as the Roman Empire
perhaps it was the first thing to go
where is the stylistic technique, the realistic nature of portraits, the imagery, they ask with angry eyes.
have we become so desperate that everything frivolous, pointless, absurd has meaning?
how is a blank canvas with a single blue stripe art?
art no longer resembles anything.
it has devolved into something beyond our grasp of understanding
art is clearly dead.

I sit on a practically empty bus but manage to hear a hysteric girl saying that
love is dead, dead as the nail in a coffin, dead as mackerel, dead as the Roman Empire
it’s hard to argue with her when love is as simple as swiping left or right after a two second impression.
how is that we trust a calculated computerized formula more than feelings, inclination, emotions?
because of feminism,  apparently chivalry has evolved, changed, and completely disappeared
because in this world of formulas and mechanic impulses we can no longer comprehend what real unadulterated emotion feels like
love is clearly dead.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Friendsgiving in Boston

I had a really fantastic break in Boston! Smith College is about 1-2.5 hours away from Boston depending on if you take bus, train, car, etc. A wonderful friend gave me a ride there and I had a fantastic time just wandering around Boston. I have thoroughly missed Smith though. MIT (my brilliant friends attend) just doesn't have the homey vibe a women's college has.
There are only three weeks left until school ends and welp I am totally excited.

Trip highlights:
Tuesday-I arrived around 5:30 pm and went out to eat sushi with one of my high school friends that I haven't seen in a long time!! It was so nice catching up with her and window shopping. I ended the night at an awkward room party completely sober.
Wednesday: I went to Flour, which is this cute little bakery that also sells sandwiches and soup, etc. The afternoon was spent talking to a friend literally for hours. At night, my friends and I helped make molded chocolate for their dorm thanksgiving.
Thursday: Dorm thanksgiving! It was a lot of fun and fancy dishes. I had such a good meal thanks to their house master :) We then watched Mockingjay which was an okay movie. The second movie was definitely superior. At dinner, I went to a friend's family friend's house and we had a Chinese thanksgiving with turkey. It was fun but I definitely felt overwhelmed by all the Exeter (the really expensive boarding school) people that were there. It's hard being from a really great women's college that people don't really know about.
Friday: I had lunch with more high school friends in a cool little hole in the wall sandwich place. I got to shop around Cambridge and then we went to the Museum of Fine Arts! The Museum is incredible. I mean not as incredible as New York, but definitely worth visiting. I got to see Chinatown at night and had a pretty great dinner.
Saturday: I went to Prudential shopping area. We didn't have time to go see the skyline but it was fun nonetheless. I almost missed my bus back to Smith but somehow made it back safe and alive.

It was a really great trip! I still don't feel like doing work though even I'm back. . .
On another note, Phi Kaye (the poettt) is coming tomorrow and I cannot wait!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Moody Musings

Hi everyone! It's been a series of a few cold days and I'm not really sure what to blog about at the time being. I'm trying to craft a new fiction piece in order to get into intermediate fiction writing (yes that's a class here) and it's been a struggle trying to overcome writer's block. I haven't really updated you guys on the inner-workings of my brain so why not another musings post? Please post any suggestions of what you'd like to see on this blog in the comments! Feedback is so essential! 

-Windchill and winter is so real here...
-I have 8 more classes until the end of semester.
-When is thanksgiving break getting here?
-I should really purchase an umbrella
-Weird people show up at fast food places at 2am.. 
-I really need a hair cut
-why in the world does nail polish just peel off? 
-how to stop spending money?
-I really want like 3 different pairs of new shoes.. the struggle. 
-how to be romantic and not cliche?
-how to meet that witty, intellectual guy while attending a women's college with the laziness of a sloth.. 
-why does dinner always seem mediocre? What is my favorite meal of the day..
-I love yogurt and jam on bread. 
-FRUIT. I miss fresh produce :'( I want to go home now. 
-any movie suggestions?

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Hello. Goodbye. Thank you.

These past two weeks have been an emotional slump. November is just simply a hard month and I want to drop everything and live a carefree existence for a couple weeks. I can't wait for Thanksgiving Break (I'm going to Boston!) and winter break (first time going home). I want to go to a fancy holiday party or dress up and wander an art museum. It just seems that there's so much and so little to look forward to at the same time. Anyways, Friday was a really good day and I read poetry for the first time, learned once again how Smith parties are not fun sober, and am slowly getting used to the biting cold. Snow has not fallen on Northampton yet!

I just wanted to share the poem I wrote for the Open Mic! I'm the secretary of Smith's lit mag called Labrys! woo! 

Hello. Goodbye. Thank you

He said to a girl who had forgotten the pain of frowning, of the dark, of being alone. 
A girl who finally found a place better than reality, somewhere in her head. 
You are perfect, he said. 
Perfect in the way you complete me. 
The way you smile, the way your feet are perpetually cold, the way you cry when you watch adventure time
It’s cute how you don’t understand physics and the way you love literature, plants, and kate spade
Hello he said to the same girl three months later, who slowly lost herself in return for the empty promise of love. 
You are perfect, like a charity case. 
I love you, he said ten times a day, as if simple act of speech made everything all right. 
She began to remember the pain of frowning, of the dark, of being alone. 
The terror of waking up each morning in actual reality with only four minutes of solace before having to pretend to be extraordinarily happy. 
And on some particularly bad days, four minutes is not nearly enough to mask away the pain. Everything cracks and the emotional mess begins. 
You were my escape from reality she said. Until you became worse than my fear of frowning, of the dark, of being alone.

She said to him, who gave nothing in return for everything. 
Goodbye, he said to her, the girl who was now a shadow of her former self. 
She cried enough tears to fill the ocean and tried so hard to understand a world of complete darkness.
Slowly she learned, 
He is not the solution to overcoming reality, the reality outside her head. 
Goodbye to that girl who thought he was necessary to stay afloat.
Goodbye to the girl he had once loved 
Goodbye to the feeling of disappointment that there were still signs of life every morning, that her lungs still ached for air, and her heart still pumped blood.
Life is a gift, a gift given only once. A gift meant keeping.
Goodbye to people who can’t see the complexity between her smiling eyes. 
Goodbye to people who can’t see that she is more than someone willing to swallow all the negativity in the world. 
She said to herself, you are perfect in all your imperfections. 
You are perfect because you don’t smile every moment, you are perfect because you are frivilous, intellectual, beautiful. 

Thank you.
She said to him almost a year later.
She had overcome her hatred of reality, the pain of frowning, of the dark, of being alone. 
All by herself she had grown. 
Barely a reflection of the girl he once loved. Familiar but completely changed. 
No longer soft spoken, no longer so afraid, no longer that charity case he had so willingly thrown away.
He said hello a second time as if the past is something that simple. 
She doesn’t care because she no longer desperately seeks to leave reality. 
Had she stayed, she would’ve been the exact person she promised never to be 
Someone so ready to give up dreams, hopes, ambitions for someone who doesn’t even care. 
Thank you because now she is
Fearless to be whoever the hell she wants to be. 
To disturb the universe 
or whatever else she seeks. 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Two Months In: Budgeting, Romance, and Squirrels

Squirrels are so cute. Am I right?
Hello! I hope y'all are having a good day! I've been having a crazy hectic week (and next week is not much better) so please understand why this post is so late! It's another round of midterms and I've been occupied with a 10 page paper on philosophers. I'm not having a blast.

College has been a really great learning experience so far! I'm sort of getting the hang of becoming an individual. I have once again reached a point where I'm sleeping at like 2 in the morning... it's definitely a rough patch. College is not always like this! I have a few tips from the regrets of my college life (but never Smith. I am in love with Smith).

Let me just tell you how much I hate budgeting. It is literally the worst thing ever. I work tutoring kids and I make a decent  amount but no one would ever know because I spend that money so fast. October was just a terrible month where I spent more than humanly possible (okay not that much but I cried inside when I saw the little number on my mobile banking app). I went to 3 concerts, spent Fall Break in Boston, went on a shopping trip to Boston where I bought winter clothes/boots and some really nice sweaters. November will hopefully be a better month....Here are some tips to avoid bankruptcy, tips that I'm really bad at following.
1. Get a mobile banking/accounting app
This thing will literally save your butt and make you aware and sad at the same time.
2. Ask yourself if you absolutely NEED it
The answer is almost always yes, but you know it doesn't hurt to ask yourself and really think hard about it.
3. Do not repress yourself too hard core
I've learned that if I don't buy anything, I get really upset and start going on a buying rampage... don't let yourself get to that point.
4. Set a practical budget
"I will not buy anything "is not a practical budget. I have decided I can buy two big purchases (a nice sweater, some makeup, a pair of kick ass platform boots that I fell in love with, art supplies), eat out twice, and buy 3 small things ($10 or less) in one month. It's much easier for me to see money as tangible objects instead of setting a monetary limit.

I go to a women's college. This is not to say I don't have any romance in my life. Although I don't go on cute dates in Northampton where everything seriously looks like a scene of some insanely hipster movie (hopefully this will change), it's not THAT hard to meet guys if you really want to. On Halloween weekend, my house had it's only annual house party that is open to everyone on Smith campus and the other four colleges next to Smith. Guys come and I'll just leave my personal life at that. I don't really know how to meet any decent guys though. Guys you meet at parties are well... guys you meet at parties. I'm really not looking to have a one night stand with some frat guy too drunk to function/remember anything. There is this one person in my house who is from England and her boyfriend is from Norway and he FLEW ALL THE WAY TO SMITH just to see her. I want that kind of long term commitment where you really are in love with someone. I've just recently learned that while making out with a random guy is fun in the moment (here is my personal life again haha), it leaves you with such an empty feeling afterwards. I don't expect to repeat the same genuine feelings that I had in my first relationship just because it was both of our first times having a real relationship. This kind of love is more genuine and innocent as you get to know someone while exploring your own boundaries and individual motivations. Guys in college parties don't really care about who you are as a person, not so much as your name, as long as you're entertaining enough. So basically, I'm so single I don't even know how to describe it.

The squirrels make everything better. I cannot get over them. I just want to keep all of them and be their friend and ahhhh. Also random tangent. Today my house had a fire evacuation ( I was not present for this) because some person left a hot pocket in the microwave so long that it caught on fire... don't be that person. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

1cm+: College is a Whirlwind

today was a beautiful day to read The Social
Hello everyone.... It is November and I realized I have not blogged since August. Please take my sincere apologies and this post as an olive branch. Blogging has not really been a priority. . . however, I am back! I feel like my life is at a point where I can start blogging again and I have things to say in a blog.  I played around with the layout and while it's not perfect, it's definitely a start. I'd love any feedback/encouragement. Blogging is a tedious process but too rewarding to quit

I got rid of that whole "menu" idea because it's so impractical for me to be blogging every day. The new goal is to post one insightful post, a shorter check in kind of post (musings) , and a few pictures on the yawn1 instagram.

I don't even know where to begin on college. I'm not going to try to sum up my entire life in the past two months. College is eye opening and radically different from anything high school prepares you for. Here is a checklist of all the things I'm learning/have learned:

-roommate issues do magically go away.
-how do you balance social life and academic life?
-political theory is not the class for me. in fact, only biology is the class for me. plot twist.
-why did Taylor Swift remove all her albums on spotify? CRIES.
-reading in college is hard.
-some professors are so bad at emailing...
-WHAT AM I GOING TO DO THIS SUMMER? internships? summer school? chinese? #overwhelemed
-why are there so many cute shoes online...? I think I'm starting a relationship with Topshop
-what is exercise
-newspaper is not my thing anymore.
-why are my plants dying...
-omg I can fit into my pants again!
-East Coast is SO cold
-are hook ups my thing? (post coming about this soon!)
-why is ice cream so delicious always?
-bangs were such a good decision. I want a haircut.
-This 10 page paper is so intimidating.
-what are my grades? can I make it to Oxford junior year?
-finally watched Step Up All In. It was meh.
-squirrels are so cute. #lifecomplete

Here are the diabolical classes I'm taking this semester:
Reacting to the Past (worst class ever), Gov 100: Intro to Political Theory (mehh), Chinese 1 (mehh), Intro to Cell Biology (woooo).

I am currently in the midst of researching desert plants and invasive species with my biology professor.
I might be running for class of 2018 secretary.
I am involved in like 4 different house committees.
I am the secretary for the lit mag Labrys! WOOOOO. SO EXCITED. I miss web design and being creative :'(

So those are all the thoughts that are currently going through my head. This semester is somehow rapidly spinning to an end and I am so ready for the next one...
xx talk soon

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Lessons from the Farm

Hi guys!! I am actually following the schedule! WOO, let's see how it goes during this month of September. My life has been really hectic from meeting all kinds of new people and academic seminars. I haven't even started school yet but I'm already kind of overwhelmed. People are REALLY nice here though and I'm getting along better with my roommate.

CHICKENS! They are so pretty. 
I went to a farm during my orientation group and it was a very interesting experience. The farm was a quaint place with a few animals and a wide span of crops. It wasn't necessarily organic but all the food was grown without pesticides (the farmers still use a small dosage of fertilizer) and on a small scale. It was exactly how a farm should look. During this group, I expected more of a conversation about environmental sustainability and how to balance commercial farming while keeping your ethics in check. Farming in the US is probably the least natural thing there is...

The first hour we toured around the farm. We split into two groups. I spread around mulch and that was pretty easy and fun work. The last 2-3 hours, we did a LOT of manual labor. I used a machete for the very first time to hack down some weeds... People were taking down old infrastructure and a group of 16 girls were handling really dangerous materials such as hammers, crowbars, machetes, etc. Farm labor is such hard work.

Of course there are pros and cons to everything. I feel like there
should be more programs like this. It'd be really great to spread awareness about how to farm safely through more communal farms like this. It's kind of my dream to have a world where people are growing just enough food for themselves, where such gross surplus of food doesn't exist. Food inequality is a big deal and I hope to study this more during my time at Smith. Farm labor isn't that difficult so volunteering at a local farm is an awesome way to reconnect with nature and also help a budding community that cares about the environment and what we eat. Sometimes it seems so daunting to try to fix the environment all by yourself. These programs allow people to do little things in order to help out and do their part. Just being aware of what's going on is the first step to change!

Women are just as effective as men. We are a determined  group willing to put down our phones and just do work/labor. God, I hate stereotypes.

As a total city girl, this was such a good experience! You really can't appreciate farmers and other people who are different from you until you yourself experience it.

I wish we spent more time discussing what was wrong with the world and how to fix the problem of industrial farming. There were also very few instructions on how to use equipment.  I'm not really sure how to relay what I experienced on the farm into applicable lessons to tell people.

Food and food production is so central to our history as humans and the way we've developed. I was very captivated by the farm and I hope to join more of these projects! 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

1cm+: First Days of Life at Smith

Hi everyone!! I am super excited to be at Smith.. this is my 6th day here and it's so perfect. I love Northampton even if I'm going to go a little broke.. Northampton does not cater well to college students because it's not really a college town but an artsy little hipster town! The people at Smith are all so sweet and so wonderful. I literally step outside and look a bit lost and someone is already asking if they can help me or walk me to my destination. I've set up my room a bit and I'm excited for this upcoming year to challenge, grow, and become just a really cool 21st century woman!

I just met my roommate today and I know we won't be close friends but I hope we can get along and be okay this year...that'll be in another post.

I don't know if you follow my various instagram accounts but here are some snapshots of my room!!! Life has been hectic and I haven't had a quiet minute to blog. I am so excited to blog come September though all about what college life is really like. 

Smith and Me. 

The new photo wall. It looks a LOT cooler than the one I left at home. 

Me and my new house! 

Ev is kind of like my favorite person.... she's so awesome and we might room together next year <3

Jenga night! 

Can we take a minute to appreciate the view from the Japanese Tea Hut? It's not called Paradise Pond for no reason..

The botanic garden has a cacti section. 

Where is Ferguson. I miss you. But I have a new ivy plant hanging out in my room. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Alfonso and YJ Take Random Boston Bus Station

Hi everyone! I just landed in Boston!!!!! WOOO. I am pumped. I am a bit tired but am well fed and have all my luggage. Compared to my last trip to Northampton, MA, it's so easy. This time I'm going from the airport right in Boston and taking the Peter Pan bus to the lovely town where Smith is located. It's really difficult to get to Northampton (got to transfer from Boston airport to regular Boston to Springfield to Northampton..) so I'm here at this random bus station in Boston until 10 am. 

Alfonso is kind of saving the day.. Not only is he connecting to the wifi at this random bus terminal, he is recharging my phone and letting me listen to jazz and blog... so he's kind of the perfect companion lol. He doesn't even complain and is so low maintenance! 

So I just wanted to talk about the little layout update and the new schedule! Do you guys like the new little banner under Lost in Wonderland? It's still a work in progress. I just wanted a definite schedule in order to keep myself on track. The number of posts during 2014 has been truly appalling and I apologize dearly. I think the new tactic will be short but sweet and often. I think I'll write one long, "insightful" post per week and give little updates. I like the response "Weekly Epiphanies" had!! 

If there are any other post series you guys would like to see, please comment! And now I'll explain a bit about what these "cutesy" titles mean.

Monday Epiphanies: Why not start the week with fun mementos and little things I learned from the past week? They will be like the state of the union posts but every week and very short! 

Yoga Tuesdays: You guys already know this one!! This one will be the long, insightful post about feminism or some other current events issue. I am so excited to take some college courses that teach you how to think more intuitively and grow your perspective about the world! 

Ramblings on a Thursday: Hahaha, I think this title might be my favorite. I'm going to try to publish a short story every week, very ambitious haha. Some of them might be like 100 word quick rights, or a character description. I'm sorry I'm so horrible at ending projects.. I just don't know how to end things in a satisfying way. I keep reading old things I've written and feel sad when I reach an abrupt ending. Of course I might publish some longer pieces on the way but Ramblings on a Thursday really focuses on short, mostly unedited writes.

TV Fridays: Welllll haha. Adventure Time airs Thursday and Steven Universe is apparently picking up again!! If I find some more shows I like, I will definitely review them. I think I'm going to try to pick moments I especially liked because AV Club beats me on analysis by a long shot.... even if I don't always agree with their ratings and whatnot.

Sunday Fashion: I always wanted to be in charge of a fashion blog and that just never panned out. I don't think I have enough content for an entire fashion blog... but I think I could manage to take one nice outfit picture per week! This is also mainly for my good haha. 

With that I depart! I have to go board the next bus anyway pretty soon! Oh goodness, the next time we talk, I will be at Smith College!!!! 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Icm+: The Woes of Packing

Beautiful outing with beautiful friends.
Hi everyone! I'm back in sunny California where the weather is actually gross and foggy in the morning. I've been saying my goodbyes and surprisingly, it hasn't been that sad. Maybe it's due to technology or the yearning for freedom, but I haven't cried and leaving doesn't seem so permanent. Leaving for college doesn't seem so real yet... it helps that a lot of my friends are on the East Coast and that a thing called Facebook exists. The reason I'm not sad is because I don't think I'll be severed from the people I actually care about. Of course I won't talk to old friends every day (that's ridiculous, we are busy people) but I can chat once in a while and drop by in December and the friendship lives on.

Somehow with the invention of social media, there is that expectation to talk everyday but that's really impossible. I'm kind of excited to keep in touch but also have that opportunity to meet new people.

And here is the 1cm+ of the day: packing. I usually like packing but packing has consumed and taken over my life and made it absolutely miserable. I own a lot more clothing than I expected and well.. I had a glorious image of packing in my head before the actual process started. I was going to create a time lapse video or a series of very cool, edited photos. BUT YOU KNOW WHAT, packing sucks, a lot. So I think this would be best done with a few tips, a few memorable quotes from my mother, and a photo montage showing you my pain. I'm not done yet but the finally packed up luggage will be shared on my instagram for this blog. 

Early in the game. 
1. Do not take garbage. 
Hahaha, I don't mean this in the sense of actual garbage but just clothes that you've only ever worn once. No you will not wear it more when you go off to a place far, far away. Do not bring too many sentimental notebooks or heavy photo frames. You are not going in the wilderness (unless you are..), you are fully capable of buying new essentials once you get there. College packing is also the perfect time to empty out your wardrobe of things you never liked. Do not bring books... books are heavy and it's not like you're going to be cooped up in your dorm room reading your favorite YA books.. (jokes, I don't read YA..)

2. Be creative!
My dad ordered those vacuum seal space saving bags late so I had to make my own! This is just one example of my t-shirts being stuffed into my own space saving bags. 

So if you order a lot of clothes off the internet, they all come in nice little plastic packaging. All this packaging has one single hole on the side. I just taped it down after stuffing with masking tape. Once it's sealed tightly, I sat on it lol. All the air left and I had my own vacuum sealed bag! 

The space bags are supposed to come tomorrow so I'm saving those for outerwear and other things that can't just be stuffed easily. 

Here are some more examples! 

The skirt collection

Pants were kind of difficult to stuff but it is definitely possible. 

the sweaters! 

Little remnants of summer! 

I haven't decided on which bags I want to bring yet... 

The left showcases some dresses! And the right photo is of the outerwear I plan on taking!! 

I did not take a picture of my shoes but here we go as listed:

+Sparkly blue boots
+Brown fuzzy boots
+Flat black sandals
+Tall black sandals (heeled)
+Leather oxfords
+Running shoes (YES!)
+Shower shoes 
I am ditching the Uggs everyone. 

So that's that! Here are some memorable quotes from my mother everyone.

"You look like you're moving out of the house."
"I am, mom."

"Your room looks like a moving center."
"Erm, it kind of is, mom."

"Why in the world do you need so many shoes?"
"Shoes run the world."

Ignore my feet... the top four photos are variations on the same dress. I used a lot of the same clothes but I feel like the mood and tone of each outfit is very different! That's what I love about fashion. Subtle, minor changes like a bag/shoes/coat are essential. Clothing is so versatile and fun to play around with! 
The suitcase count is at 4. 

Okay so now for a real treat! I know my fashion blog never took off and maybe it's still something that could happen in the future but for now.. here are some variations of outfits that I made. I know the photos are quite . . . basic haha. No fancy backgrounds, you can barely see my face in a lot of them.. but here are some representations of average clothing I wear! 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Weekly Epiphanies

This a short, random, spontaneous post on what I've noticed and learned throughout this week.

+ Chinese is hard. Chinese is kicking my butt. I hate you, grammar. 
+ Watching movies until 3 am when you know you have to wake up before 8 am is a bad idea
+ Even bad movies seem fantastic when watching at 3 am.
+ Some people upload movies onto Youtube without sound. WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT? I couldn't watch Ten Things I Hate About You and was sad. That movie may be my favorite. 
+ Mosquitoes are the worst. I have bites everywhere and it's slowly killing me.
+ There is nothing more frustrating than having \800 on your bus card when the bus fare is \900. (Apparently the smallest amount that you can load onto your bus card is \1000)
+ I have a newfound obsession with dance. Um did you just spend the last 2 days watching dance movies until 4 am? Hmm hmm? Haha, I have watched all the Step Up movies and some others. Dirty Dancing will always remain a classic. 
+ I freaked out when I momentarily forgot my cactus's name. It's Ferguson, by the way.
+ I miss Alfonso the macbook dearly, too dearly, where are you my love?
+ Hair dyeing/ highlighting is a powerful experience. 
+ Shopping is endless. The ironic part is that I packed up a lot of my clothes so I don't have anything to wear to class... that struggle. 
+ Creme puffs are happiness.
+ I miss San Francisco so much. I'm ready to go home! 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

1cm+: A Girl's Quest to Understand College

Last year I bought a book in Korea called 1cm+. It was a really cutely animated self help book aimed at finding the extra 1cm in our lives in order to bring happiness and hope. The things it suggested weren't complicated such as go climb a mountain or spend three years wandering a new city. They were simple suggestions like put your smartphone down more, differences in male and female thinking, how to find a good love haha. It's a very Murakami-esque idea to find the beauty in the small things instead of expecting huge miracles to always fill your happiness meter. 

That's kind of how I view college. College isn't a time to develop completely new skills. I'm not looking to learn something earth-shattering by attending Smith but rather that extra 1cm+ in my life in order to appreciate what is around me and develop more ability to be empathetic, rational, and patient. The little tweaks in attitude and mindset help set a path of prosperity, happiness, and fulfillment. 

Already I feel a lens on life just by being more aware of food stability, feminism, and the problems with government involvement in certain industries. 

This journey is sort of like a fill in the number coloring book. So much of it has already been colored by 17 years of being alive. I'm attending a liberal arts college in order to see the blank spots and fill them up with a new perspective, idea, and story. 

Look out for future 1cm+ tags to see little snippets of what I'm learning in college in order to have that extra the ability to see two sides of an argument and make bad situations into good memories.

Read on for the quintessential horror: the college roommate. 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Sick is Ick

Korea deems this one day of medication. I
used to think it was very cute but now.... ergh.
I couldn't have said that any better. Maybe this prolonged sickness has resulted in some new poetry skills! (hehe, just kidding). I felt that it was time for a post but I hate to be starting August like this.

I've been taking my medication and trying to get better from my common cold. Being sick really is a downer and I hope all of you guys are taking preventive measures to avoid it. 

I haven't been able to do much since something is always hurting. I even had to skip one of my classes. I hate skipping class but there was no way that I could function and be productive. 
Look, look, it moves! Although it's a bit weird...

My life has calmed down a bit but just thinking about my schedule when I get home is giving me a headache. 

I just wanted to update you all a little about what was going on in my life. The weather isn't as hot anymore which is a relief. It's very windy and kind of cold and rainy... 

Look out for:
+ Epic Packing Post
+ Review of why EVERYONE should read Whistling Vivaldi
+ Roommate post 


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Short Life of a Cicada (& Me)

If I ever write a novel, I want it to be of this same title. Apparently, a cicada lives for one summer and 7 years buried underground. That is a long time. In that one crucial summer, the cicada lives by hanging on to apartment windows and crying out for everyone to hear. While their difficult life does stir pity, it's hard to feel bad for them when they're constantly crying out (very loudly, I might add) at odd hours of the day and night. They accomplish very little and the cycle starts all over again.

Lately I haven't been able to fall asleep (not due to the cicada, don't worry). I've mostly been thinking into the wee hours of night until I finally fall asleep. Humans on average live more than 60 years, some even to a 100 years. That's much longer than a cicada's lifespan. However, when we die, how many of us are remembered? In death, we are no different from a cicada even though the opportunity that we have is incomparable.

I want to accomplish something, I'm not sure what yet. I don't really care for fame or riches (just enough to occasionally splurge on Kate Spade and TopShop), but to be remembered positively for something that I did. Even now, I really hope that some people in this world were uplifted or happier because of me. 

Let's change the world together. Let's take advantage of the fact that we've been born humans and not cicadas. How sad would it be to the end life the very same way as a cicada with people simply grumbling about the ruckus they caused.  

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Brilliant, Adventure Time!

Since I've been in Korea, I've been falling way behind on TV. I finished rewatching six seasons of Gossip Girl before I got here but I have no way of watching other TV like the new season of Project Runway or my favorite, Adventure Time. Yesterday, late last night, I couldn't sleep so I caught up on 3 episodes of Adventure Time through online streaming. I wish I had written 3 whole posts about each episode but a las. Season 6 is back on point! I am so excited about the upcoming episodes after some disappointing ones.

I will always be advocating Adventure Time so just in case you forgot, here's a short little paragraph explaining why I enjoy this show.

I started watching Adventure Time four years ago as a freshman. I was captivated by the art and the characters even if it felt like my intelligence was going down. I'd dabbled in some other Cartoon Network shows but none of them really captured me like Adventure Time. I wasn't a serious watcher until sophomore or junior year. I'm not really sure when the surging love for Adventure Time took place but I'm sure it was somewhere between season 4 and season 5. Season 5 was amazing in every single way.

We all have a childish side that we repress at most times. Maybe that was the first hook to my long term love with Adventure Time. As I matured, the show was maturing with me. There was such smart dialogue and quirky, fun lessons that were extremely profound. The characters that were so one sided had such an intricate backstory.

I hated most of the characters at first and watched mainly for the art. I'm not sure why but this show struck me as such a boy's show and something that I shouldn't be watching. However, over time, there is a side of empathy that just makes you feel for the characters, like Ice King or Marceline.

Adventure Time is always able to fit a story of epic proportions into a neat little 10-12 min slot. I appreciate the way you can watch any episode out of order. There are some key episodes but the facts we glean from them aren't necessary to understand the next episode. This really encouraged me to continue watching through the stressful years of sophomore, junior, and well senior. Other TV shows were just too much of a hassle to keep watching for 45-60 mins every week. It's overwhelming when you have ten or eleven episodes you suddenly need to catch up on. With Adventure Time, there is never that burden.

You grow with the characters and find such thoughtful meaningful advice tucked in this strange, post apocalyptic world. I was disappointed in most of season 6 because it seemed like the producers/writers/everyone at Adventure Time were working too hard. The beauty of this show is that it feels so effortless and that after a 10 min adventure, you have learned something profound. It's a sudden realization that is slowly built through dialogue and plot that isn't always harping at you with every scene change. The fun and moving aspects of the show are back in harmony and I cannot be happier.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Walking in Familiarity

Hello again! It's quiet evenings like this where I really wish I brought Alfonso (my macbook) along. My grandma's computer is so loud and my grandparents sleep so early, but for now this will have to suffice. 

The rainy season has started in Korea and it's much more tolerable than the heat. Today I enjoyed an evening walk with my grandma under the foliage of tall trees and already blooming flowers. My umbrella was quivering under the pressure of such pitter patter as we walked along the mossy stones and pavement alike. It was really wonderful just to be there with my grandma and reflect on past, present, and future. I used to live with her when I was a child and she raised me before I left for the US. She's perhaps the most important person in my life and there was nothing better than strolling outside. In moments where there was nothing to say, the rain provided such rich ambiance. By the end of our walk, my arms and legs were dripping rain water and rain had seeped into my shoes. My socks were damp and pressed to my feet. It was uncomfortable and kind of cold but rewarding in a sense. There's something special about just sitting/walking whilst nature is taking its course. I really do need to spend more time absently reflecting outside.

We have become people who hate everything about the word "natural." Sure the words natural and organic sell when going to a grocery store or buying cosmetics, but deep down we have become so estranged to everything that is natural. The food industry really disappoints me and oftentimes, I want to run away and live on a farm and make sure food is being grown (I used the word developed at first, that's how estranged I've become) in a humane way. We are what we eat, and so far that includes a lot of chemically enhanced corn.  

I decided to stop using my grandpa's phone on the bus. It's about a 30 min ride one way to my class so I've been perusing Facebook and catching up on news. While that too is important, there was something inexpressible about observing the surroundings and taking the short time to be mindful.

I was very torn on which orientation group I wanted to be part of. Half of me wanted to do a more rigorous outdoor canoeing/hiking orientation group. I missed out on the camping trip that is available to 50 random seniors so it sounded like a fun opportunity. However, I'm not much of a hiker and I don't own any gear whatsoever. I was late to register especially since I'm here in Korea at the moment. The outdoor groups are very small and so when I went to register they were already gone. Luckily enough, my second choice (the one I was torn between) was still available! So now I'm all set to go wander around farms and learn about food productivity and how to be sustainable. I can't even tell you how excited I am for it! 

College is coming very soon. I have about half a month left and then I'm shipped off to Massachusetts. I'm nervous but excited at the same time. My mom just left for the States and it's the first time I've ever been anywhere so long by myself. It's good practice for when I'm in somewhere unfamiliar, unlike my grandma's house. 

I guess we've already established that I'm not like most people in how I think, act, or behave so here's a little list of the things I'm MOST looking forward to come August 22. 

1. Having a little room that is fully half mine. I can't remember if I put that I wanted a single or not. I really wouldn't mind either way. I'm so excited to have a little sanctuary, a home away from home. I sort of have an idea of what I want to decorate said room with but I'm going in with an open mind and a willingness to embrace anything. 

2. Just budgeting my time my own way. Maybe to some people this means constant parties and whatnot, but to me it means something completely different. It means that I can listen to jazz and eat crackers next to Alfonso (he loves crackers too) inbetween class or just wander off to a bookstore at 5pm without telling anyone. I can skip meals or indulge haha (more likely) and do as much yoga as I want without bothering anyone. 

3. Classes! Although I have tentatively signed up for class from 9-4 everyday... I'm looking forward to a new way of learning and only taking classes that I want to (horticulture yo). 

4. Meeting new people! :D I'm kind of worried about making friends. I wasn't worried before but after being in Korea I'm kind of worried. I haven't made any friends in either of my chinese classes. Sure I can smile and laugh with them during class, but I've never had much of a personal conversation with anyone. I just think back to open campus though (when I visited in April) and it's a way more reassuring feeling.   

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Date Not Date

Hello! So as I posted earlier, I actually met up with A (brief recap: guy I liked freshman year who moved away to boarding school). It's kind of drama-esque.

So first, let's start with morning of. I sent him a brief message reminding him of our hangout the night before. When I woke up, I received a message that he was busy on the 17th (the day we agreed to meet) but that he was free today (today as in the 16th) and Sunday. He's leaving on Monday so it's not like there was another week to plan this. I had already made plans for lunch with another friend. I was very perplexed. Somehow, we worked it out to meet on the 16th at 12:30 pm and I managed to push my other hangout to 2 pm.  

I went to my day class in Chinese and quickly went straight to Gangnam. Finding my way there wasn't much of an issue because I've been there a couple times now and there's literally a subway line that takes you straight there in 20 mins. He was 30 mins late, which is "a little late." Thankfully, I could shop and browse. At one point, I thought he was standing me up. His phone doesn't have data connection here so he couldn't even send me a message. 

I chose the wrong exit so there wasn't that much to eat/see. We still managed to find this little Japanese food place that had empty tables. I had ramen which is perfectly good with me! It was kind of awkward at first as expected, but soon got a lot better. He paid for lunch haha. He even saw me take out my wallet and everything. Once he realized that I don't have any directional skills at all (I can't even read a map or follow google maps...), we went back into the subway and left through exit 11. Exit 11 is where EVERYTHING is. So we wandered around a bit. I said I'd buy dessert since he bought lunch. 

We found this really great, popular, delicious patbingsu (look it up on google) place but it was really full and there was a line. He knew I was short on time too and really courteous (in every way). So we wandered more and found Caffe Bene. It took around 10-15 minutes to find the door lols. Korea has a lot of buildings on top of buildings so it's hard to find the right entrance. He apologized for making me walk up and down so many stairs. 

When our bingsu was ready (the little beeper thing buzzes), I stood up and he immediately said that he was going to get it. While eating our bingsu, it really felt like we were old friends reconnected after a really long absence. We joked about his three friend groups at my old high school, the snow, dorm essentials, etc. 

It seems like the door is open for future dates not dates in college. I sent a message at night (after my night class) saying thanks again for lunch and that it was fun. He replied saying that he too thought it was fun :) 

It's kind of like the date I always wanted, except it was so comfortable and felt like two friends talking. I don't want anything more than that. It's perfectly fine the way it is right now. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Sunshine Award

The rules:
Thank the person who nominated you. THANK YOU ENVY!!! I so appreciate this :) 
Answer the questions. Yes, I will do that! 
Nominate a bunch of other people. You got it. 
Give them questions for homework. Hehe, okay! 
Tell them they've got homework. I WILL FIND EVERYONE. jks, but actually.
Put the award picture on your blog. One step ahead of you. 
1. What is your favorite book and why?
Hmmmmm... this is so difficult. I have so many books that I like. I think I'm going to go with recent favorites since it's too difficult to pinpoint just ONE book. I am in love with Haruki Murakami, there I said it! Although his books are all translated to English, I always take away something breathtaking that resonates with me forever more. I feel that way about almost all of his books that I've read, from 1Q84, Wild Sheep Chase,and A Windup Bird Chronicle. Murakami is just quirky enough for me to read. It's weird, a warning before you delve deep into the world of two moons, tiny people, deep wells, and the overwhelming sense of fighting isolation. I also enjoyed The Glass Castle for the second time! I will one day get around to reading Kurt Vonnegut because I feel like he is just up my alleyway. I love love love Jane Austen too. She is the master of social critique and empowering women. Guilty pleasures are a whole nother category but these books are actually so fulfilling before, during, and after.  
Do you have any hobbies that your friends think are ridiculous, but that you totally like?
I'm an obscure hipster (full embodiment of current persona) and so of course I have weird hobbies that my friends think are ridiculous. First off, I collect cacti. Yes. I collect cacti haha and name them fancy European names. I also collect mason jars. I have a lot of particular loves-- like milk jars, hair bows, cats, hydrangeas, TopShop.. these aren't hobbies but I feel like my friends do give me the occasional eye roll. 
3. What's the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?
Ooh. Hmm... this is one of those questions where I can't think of anything once the question is asked. Like everyday at Chinese day class is embarrassing. I do so many embarrassing things that they constantly replace each other for "most embarrassing" in my memory. One time I mixed up hyung and oppa and that was bad (hyung is only for guys, oppa is only for girls). My mom somehow gaining access and stalking all my photos, all TG's photos, all A's photos on the train was a recent debacle. One time I wore jean shorts and flip flop to a dinner with S's mom and family friend at a nice restaurant in Berkeley. She insisted I didn't have to change and it was the worst feeling ever. I mixed up turpentine and serpentine in junior year English class...The list could literally go on forever. 
4. What would you miss most about blogging if you had to stop?
I have thought about quitting a lot of times. Blogging is a really difficult hobby to maintain. It's hard to come up with interesting content all the time or even publish on a regularly basis (I know, I know. I have posted 1 post in July thus far..). I would miss having this little outlet to rant to and know my opinions were being read by someone. I would really miss this little blogging community!  
5. Who's your biggest inspiration? (Not sure if I'm asking this question the right way... but I hope you understand what I mean)
My biggest inspiration is none other than WES ANDERSON. I feel like these questions have not revealed much new information about my life. I'm sorry I'm so one sidedly hipster. Wes Anderson just embodies what a hipster should be like. He doesn't do things just to be unique or not mainstream. He just does them because he likes them and it turns out it is uniquely him. He doesn't have to maintain an image because his uniqueness is not an act or something he copied from a magazine. Wes Anderson creates and lives the way he wants to and has a dedicated fan base that truly admires his work. He doesn't compromise his work and passion for money. I hope to one day say the same things about myself. 

1. What is one photograph that you keep dear to yourself?
2. Toast, Waffles, or Pancakes? Why?
3. If you realized that you could talk to animals, what would you ask them?
4. Describe your happiest memory in the past month.
5. How do you feel about war? 

I nominate.....

Have fun answering these questions!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Goodbye San Francisco, Hello Seoul!

new hair! I love bangs. 
Hello everyone! I know I haven't been posting at all recently. Life has been very busy and I honestly don't know what to blog about at the moment. I hope all that will change once I receive some stimulus from Smith!

I've been taking two Chinese classes in order to master basic Chinese. In my free time, I've (of course) been shopping. I've only been here for one week though! 

Every day from 10 am - 11:50 am, I have class. This day class is scary. Everyone is so intimidating and I shake due to fear of messing up and failing.. This class has about 9 people. I work on my accent so much but improvement is so insignificant. No one realizes I've lived in the US for most my life though which is a success! 

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I have another class at 7:50 pm -9:50 pm. The night class is so much fun. It's much more conversational and there's no fear of messing up. There's only four people and the teacher is so cool! The environment is very relaxed and during breaks, we gossip about celebs (I really need to catch up on celebs..) and she (the teacher) tells us the best places to drink beer and eat street food. I think I'm of legal drinking age here but I'm such a square. There's this one guy in my class who is at least 3 years older than me, but really attractive. He is so nice to everyone and he said my voice was cute haha. I'm like the little sister of the group. I love this class. 

I have a lot of plans going with some family friends and even some of my own friends! I'm meeting up with some girls who are going to Smith in the fall and some old church people :) I'm excited! 

So I guess it's time I shared another little story of my past-present. Let's call him A. He confuses me a lot. This story is pretty long so click below if you want to read.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Bookstores: An Escape from Busyness

Over the course of my seventeen years, I have never felt so hipster. I wear patterned pants, buy myself flowers, and dream about owning a collection of records, old books, cacti, and mason jars. I realize how much I stand out from a crowd of my own friends and here’s the weird part-- I actually enjoy it. It’s really been full circle from my freshman years where I would do anything to blend in with any crowd. I was talking to my friend at lunch about clothing trends and these days it seems like you’re either hipster or preppy and I am far into the hipster trend. The hipster trend goes beyond clothing though and in many cases, it’s become a way of life. I am a hipster because to me, it means being an individual and enjoying the small little things. I don’t do things because they’re not mainstream or because it’s a hipster thing. I have an appreciation for Wes Anderson because he pays so much attention to detail and sticks to his own unique type of movie. If hipsterdom had a statement, I believe it would be “you do you.” Hipster culture is an embrace of obscurity and how okay it is to like things that are strange and nonsensical. Things don’t always have to make sense and there is a willingness to stray from a certain path.

In such a busy world, where we are constantly moving but not constantly thinking, I love going to hipster/“artsy” places. I have realized the importance of leaving the house and quitting an addiction to Netflix. There is just so much present and available that is wasted. Besides the touristy people at places like farmer’s market, art museums, and bookstores, there is always a stream of people talking, appreciating, and not distracted. As much as I love technology, it’s made our culture absentminded. I can no longer stand the awkwardness of being alone. Skimming Facebook or Twitter is the perfect solution and somehow we’ve accepted a person on their phone by themselves as social. Bookstores remain one of my favorite places because people are off their phones, willing to have a discussion with a stranger or enjoying a book that represents who they are. You are free to be whoever you want in a bookstore and no one will judge you. I never feel like any time passes because I’m so lost in the world that I’m presently in. Bookstores have always created a cozy little environment shaded away from the reality of the present.

I’m not sure why we’re busier now as a culture than ever before. In some cases, I overplay my own busyness because it’s not acceptable to be idyll. In art museums or little ramen shops, it’s okay to not be doing something productive. It’s okay to be having a simple conversation or looking at the beauitful thinks from past to present.

I want to do something meaningful with the rest of my summer so hopefully art class and Mandarin class will inspire me. I think I’ll post short travel diaries of my day to day life and I will try to take some photos. xx