Monday, August 21, 2017

Packing List - A Semester in South Korea

Hey!

I wanted to make a video with my packing my bags but time flew and suddenly it's the day before I leave. Therefore I decided to put together this list of what I'm bringing with me during my exchange semester in Korea from September 1st to December 22nd.

I plan to revisit this list once I return to comment on whether I brought too much or too little of something. What I've listed below is everything I brought, no more and no less.


Packing List - A Semester in South Korea

Clothes/Shoes:

...................................................................   Underwear (3 bras, all my panties)
...................................................................   Pyjamas (t-shirt and shorts)
...................................................................   Thick cardigan
...................................................................   Thin jacket
...................................................................   1 fancy dress
...................................................................   3 normal dresses
...................................................................   Tops: 2 tops, 6 sleeve shirt, 10 t-shirts
...................................................................   Bottoms: 3 skirts, 4 pairs of shorts, 1 pair of pants, 1 pair of security shorts
...................................................................   Tights: 1 pair of fleece lined, 2 skin colored pairs, 2 black nylon
...................................................................   Socks: 7 normal pairs, 1 warm pair
...................................................................   1 belt
...................................................................   Shoes: 1 pair of flats, 1 pair of high heels, 1 pair of sandals, 1 pair of sneakers

Daily stuff:

...................................................................   Backpack (used for hand luggage)
...................................................................   Extension cord with space for 3
...................................................................   Laptop + charger
...................................................................   Dictionary
...................................................................   Jewelry
...................................................................   Happy Jar

Toiletries:

...................................................................   Straightener
...................................................................   Make-up remover
...................................................................   Razors
...................................................................   Tweezers
...................................................................   Hemp gloves
...................................................................   Deodorant (4)
...................................................................   Toothpaste
...................................................................   Pads
...................................................................   Hair ties + bobby pins
...................................................................   Shampoo + conditioner
...................................................................   Cold sorepatches
...................................................................   Nail file
...................................................................   Comb
...................................................................   2 small, old towels
...................................................................   Skin care products
...................................................................   Basic make-up items
...................................................................   Face sponge
...................................................................   Lens solution + lenses (daily lenses + 2 colored pairs lasting 6 months)
...................................................................   Cotton buds
...................................................................   Painkillers
...................................................................   Wax

Hand luggage:

...................................................................   Hand sanitizer
...................................................................   Phone + charger
...................................................................   Fan
...................................................................   Travel pillow
...................................................................   Sunglasses
...................................................................   Sunblock
...................................................................   Earphones
...................................................................   Shoulder bag
...................................................................   Empty water bottle
...................................................................   Notepad + pencil case
...................................................................   1 pair of lenses
...................................................................   Facemask
...................................................................   Deodorant
...................................................................   Comb
...................................................................   2 cotton buds
...................................................................   T-Money card
...................................................................   Cash (Korean Won) + Mastercard
...................................................................   Mints
...................................................................   Toothbrush
...................................................................   Passport + visa
...................................................................   Copy of passport, flight tickets, flight itinerary, travel insurance
...................................................................   Address of the hostel (Korean/Romanized)

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Happy Jar!

It's gray, windy and it's been raining non-stop since I woke up so I thought today would be the perfect day to tell you about my Happy Jar!


It was around Christmas time. I had just gone home for the holidays and was working on my essay when one day, a message from Celine 씨 popped up.

"I think I'll buy a jar for the new year. Then I can put all the small things I do in it so that I'll remember them, you know! Kind of like making New Year's resolutions but where you make a jar that you can fill with experiences" - Celine 씨

...
And from that day the idea evolved.
The idea is to make either a note or a little slip every time you do something worth remembering or something that makes you happy, write the date on it, and then open the jar later on. Celine seems to make notes after specific experiences and so far I have made slips whenever something has happened that has made me extra happy. So really it's subjective and all about what you feel is worthy of being put into the jar of happiness.
We talked about then opening the jar around the end of the year to look back before entering the new year. Specifically, I plan to open mine on the very last day of the year and make a video where I read them all, think back, and end the year on a happy note.

I wrote my first slip on January 1ˢᵗ, when I woke up to check my phone and I saw that my first message was a voice recording from my friend Larry. He said that it was something he did for all his close friends for New Years and hearing that made me feel really appreciated.

"That is going in my jar!" I said.

That answer confused him so I told him:

It's so easy to end the year thinking it was bad just because one has had a bunch of bad moments in the days leading up to new year. But if you open a jar like this it can remind you how happy you also were during the year. And I think that's really important so you can have a good start of the new year - feeling optimistic and satisfied.

Larry loved the idea and has since joined in! I know that he has at least 10 slips and 8 of those are because of me he said. I know that one was because I filmed greeting my grandma and it made him smile. So again, what we decide to put in the jar varies a lot.


One day Larry told me he was afraid that he'd become over zealous about it. He didn't want to overuse the slips otherwise they'd become less special. 
I thought about it and said:

If it makes you feel good then why not? I think it's all up to how you feel in that moment you are wanting to put in the jar. We tend to think of the past with nostalgic eyes and romanticize our memories. So for me, to not overdo it, I only allow myself to write happy moments from the day. Meaning today I can't write about something that happened yesterday because, obviously, I would have written it down yesterday if it had made me happy enough. It's sort of like a rule ... but it's only there for you to not spoil it for yourself. 


After that, Larry said that if it were important enough for him to stop what he was doing and write it down, it'd be jar-worthy. He said that he'd like to put his slips in order and make a collage/timeline out of it. The possibilities are endless!


So far I'm super happy with our decision to do this. My mood has gotten a lot better and I feel like I appreciate and am more aware of the little things happening during the days.

When we make slips, we tell each other. I felt super hyped when Celine sent me a picture of her first slip and when Larry screams "MY JAR!" in the midst of a conversation become he's deemed something jar-worthy. 


Now, whenever I look at my jar, I feel excited for the next days to come and I can only hope that you feel inspired to make your own jar after reading this post.


⋆ ✧ Let's fill our jars and share our happiness on December 31ˢᵗ! ✧ ⋆

Monday, January 2, 2017

New Year Resolutions 2017

Hey again! Good morning!

I hope you all had a great night the night before yesterday and a pleasant start of the year.
Hopefully you still have the same amount of limbs as you had three days ago!

Yesterday morning I woke up full of energy so I thought I should just as well get this year started with my first blog post. I ended up growing too tired in the evening to finish it before today though. Woops. 

For the past 4 years I have been giving myself 10 New Year Resolutions (because I like that number) in the beginning of the year and then looked back the next to see whether I could live up to my own expectations or not. It's become a fun little tradition and a way for my ever so unsatisfied expectant self to keep track of how much I grow throughout the year.

I have usually kept these posts on my personal blog but this year I'd like to put them up here as well. For no immediate reason.

In keeping with tradition I'd like to reflect over the resolutions I made for 2016:

................................
...................................................... 1.  Travel to 2-3 countries
...................................................... 2.  Own less materialistic items
...................................................... 3.  Go to the doctor, dentist, optician etc. and have everything checked
...................................................... 4.  Take measures to be more content with my looks
...................................................... 5.  Strengthen ties with and see my family more often
...................................................... 6.  Find a new hobby
...................................................... 7.  Do something I fear
...................................................... 8.  Become a donor
...................................................... 9.  Attend 3 cons
.................................................... 10.  Be a part of the cosplay show



Well that looks... uhh. Let's discuss this.


I definitely lived up to my first goal - I went to Korea twice, once in January and once in June. Let me also add that this was the first time I traveled completely by myself without having someone accompany me on the way back and forth and without staying with friends. It's been something I've wanted to do the past few years but at the same time something I was scared of. Check off #7 too!
Right after coming back from Korea I spent a week with my family in Italy. In October I went to Vienna with my Celine 씨 and our eonni, Charlotte 씨.

Although I barely wrote about my con experiences this year, I went to both J-Popcon, GEEKcore, and Comic Con. J-me and I had planned to perform for this year's GEEKcore now that we couldn't do it for SVS the year before. But once again I think we managed our time wrong. GEEKcore snuck up on us and before we knew it, it was time for the con.

I actually got rid of a bunch of stuff  this year and that's also something I'm happy about. I gave my sister, mom, and grandma a lot of BODY SHOP products that they found much more use for than I would have and I also almost emptied a big box of drawing utensils that I handed over to a second hand shop for children. It was a rewarding feeling to know that I could both make people happy and avoid unnecessary waste.
Emptying out my closet was yet another think I would have liked to do but didn't find time for. That'll be a job for this year.

This lack of time... or should I say prioritizing my time wrong also resulted in me not getting started on a new hobby - but I did find one so I'll count #6 as half done.
Becoming a donor was quickly done online so I'd proud to say that I also reached that goal. Also, a week ago or so my mom asked me to help her become one as well. I'm content to know that I influenced my mom like this

Aaaand another thing I didn't do was to have a health check. My doctor was in one part of the country while I was in the other and every time I went to visit my family, I'd forgotten about making an appointment 2 weeks ahead with the doctor.
Speaking of family I REALLY DID TRY to strengthen ties with them and I think it was working. I went home whenever I could but with everything that's been happening the past 2 months... I'm afraid a lot of it has gone to waste. My parents had what I categorize as a really bad divorce and now I have a hard time talking to both my parents and my grandparents. Everything is chaos.
Ughhh

#4 might have been too vague. I think I had bigger things in mind when I wrote it but now that I look at it again, I question myself when I have done enough to live up to this. I bought a really nice facial cream and for Christmas I got an oil for my hair after having done a bit of research on how to strengthen it. We'll see this new year if it works out.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


That was last year. Now let's make the jump to 2017.
I'm not exactly sure what I want to focus on this year.
I feel like I spent my time horrible in 2016 - always studying and not enjoying life enough.
This year I want to spend my time as wisely as possible so that I on January 1st 2018 can look back and think "Wauw! I did so much in just a year?!" Yes, that is my goal.

And.. after all this chaos I've been reflecting a lot and realized how important it is to value what we have while we have it. Because in the blink of an eye it could all disappear one day.

Wooooops sorry! I'm getting emotional now. It's been a couple of hours since I started this post and things happened.

Anyways.
I'm giving myself until the end of January to change these but for now, here are my
New Year resolutions for 2017!


................................
................................................................... 1.  Travel to 2-3 countries
................................................................... 2.  Own less (and clean out wardrobe!)
................................................................... 3.  Complete health check
................................................................... 4.  Sing every day
................................................................... 5.  Be active on my Youtube channel
................................................................... 6.  Appreciate the little things more 
................................................................... 7.  Go on a cosplay photo shoot
................................................................... 8.  Blog more
................................................................... 9.  ???
................................................................. 10.  ???



Do you have any New Year resolutions?
If you haven't made yours yet and would like some inspiration, check out my old ones from
2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.


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