"I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing; kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles."- Audrey Hepburn

Dec 31, 2013

2013: The year in Review

I can't believe the last time I wrote anything was in September. I have been seriously neglecting my writing. However, I do realize that I only write when things aren't going great in life, whether it is work, family, or relationships. When things go right, I just cruise along and forget that I do have a place to go back to.

It's been a year, and I felt like there has been so many things happened last year that it was literally like a blur to me. This may be the most unoriginal and cliche way of writing a New Year entry blog, but I am going to do it anyway, because the feeling of taking a trip down memory lane and looking at all the highlights of your year is pretty amazing. That way I feel like I can make sure I don't forget anything important that happened to me. So here it goes:

I was lucky to spend most of January at home with warm sun, beaches, good food and great company last year. I was surrounded with friends and family, not knowing how cold and lonely it would be spending the holidays in Rochester by myself. I guess that what growing up means. Sometimes you just can't be the little kid and run back home to your parents anymore because there are things you have to do.

The rest of my last semester in college was filled with Sigmas, Greek life and school work. I can't really say that I was 100% focus on my studying but I was glad to graduate with a decent GPA, a handful of experience and a job lined up for this year. Compared to all my friends who are still struggling to find jobs, I am actually quite lucky. I also know that I have put lots of efforts and worked extra hard to get to where I was so I am proud of myself to be where I am right now. My last semester was quite fulfilling. I got to do what I have always wanted for Sigma and for me, to guide these girls through the process and have them become our members filled with excitement and enthusiasm was the best reward for me. I felt like my decision to join this organization, though was an impulsive one, was the best decision of my college career. I couldn't imagine how my college years would be if I wasn't a Sigma. I got to meet so many people and have grown so much in terms of my personality. It made my college years quite eventful. And although it was the last semester, I surprisingly met so many new people. Although our friendship wasn't something that lasts throughout college, it continues after college and I am more than happy to still have them in my life right now.

Looking back, I think 2013 was a year of so many major changes for me. I graduated from college, started a new job and tried to settle in with the idea of becoming an adult. I moved to a new apartment, got a new car, adopted a pet (something I never thought I would ever be able to), and got a tattoo. I felt like I'm step-by-step walking into the real world. And it's scary. There were moments when I got frustrated and nervous that I had to go through all these things on my own without my parents being here to help out. However, I also realize that I am capable of more than I thought I could. I also realize that the friends who I have made throughout the past four years will always be there for me. Just like how we used to help each other with homework and lab assignments, we will always be there to help each other with other things in life.

2013 was a lot of traveling for me, and it was the part that made me the happiest. Every chance I got, I took off to California, New York, Boston, Chicago, etc. Road trips bring friends together. It also makes me realize that I have so many homes away from home where everyone is willing to take me in, to spend their time despite being busy to be with me. When you don't have an actual family to come home to, you count on those families that you make for yourself.

People always say that among career, money and love, you can only have 2. My mom always tells me that if life seems to give you 2 out of 3, your last one is going to be a mess. I can't say that I was doing well financially, but I never do well with money, something I definitely needs to work on .... I have no complain about my career. I know what I want to do and I have a job that allows me to pay for things I want to do. But surprisingly, my relationship is not that bad either. Of course, there are still all the ups and downs that every relationship entails and of course there were certain moments when I lost myself and didn't know what to do. However, I was solid on ground. I wasn't all over the place. I knew what I wanted and I stayed with it. At this time last year, a certain guy came into my life and I wasn't sure if I wanted anything to do with him. I was scared of getting myself into another complication that I could never got myself out of. I turned him down, over and over, to protect myself. He was persistent. On Valentine's, when he told me "I know you have gone through terrible things in relationships before, but that doesn't mean you can't be happy", I knew I needed to give him a chance, to give myself a chance. And I was happy. When one door opens in your life, the other door closes. I was sad that I had to let one go, and I am still sad, but I also learned that I can't have everything I want all the time. Sometimes, life is about choices and I have to make the decision. There are still things I am not sure about and there are still things between us that I am scared to even think about. To be honest though, he keeps me grounded. He keeps me calm, and he keeps me from being the chaotic person that I have always been. I'm leaving Rochester soon and I learn to not let myself attach to anything, so for now, I think I am happy with what I have.

This year, I got a tattoo, as a reminder to myself that it is me who I have to think about first. It seems selfish, but if I don't take care of myself, I can't take care of anyone else. I have also been on this fitness journey and I am so proud of what I have accomplished. Gotta continue to be a fan of Casey Ho.

What do I want for 2014? 

All my grad school applications have been submitted. I am looking forward to end this year strong and to be able to move to a new point in life. I want to meet new people, learn new things and continue to live life the fullest. I want to continue finding my passion.

I think at this point I pretty much no who I am as a person, and I have no desire to change that. I just want to put my feet on the ground and start walking as the whole person that I have found. Spontaneous, but not chaotic. Take chances, but not risking anything that is important to me. I believe I will find that one person who will handle the spontaneous me .

I will spend more time with friends, and with my family. I will care for my friends more and be there for them, instead of trying to find 10,000 friends. Because at the end of the day, the people who will be there for me will be these handful of pain-in-the-ass people.

I will take care of myself better, spend more time treating myself to nice things and be healthy.

I will check out new places in the world, and make plans in the future to travel more. There are so many countries I want to travel to, and new horizons I want to see.

2013 was a good year. I'm excited to see what 2014 brings.

Dec 30, 2013

Sep 17, 2013

Fall is (almost) here!

I woke up this morning curled up under two layers of blankets, and did not want to get out of bed at all. This was one of those September mornings that I had to put on my leggings and the warm and comfy hoodie. Fall weather is here already. It just hit me that summer is really coming to the end. 

Well, while I'm looking forward to layer up and embrace the fall with all my favorite boots and scarves, I still want to make the most out of summer before it disappears. Hence, here comes the check list

 Take lots of photos of you and your friends enjoying the weather. Bonus points if you use an Instax or Polaroid camera!
 Wear something totally inappropriate and go out dancing. Stay up ‘til dawn.
 Make at least one new friend.
 Lie in bed in the morning, with the windows open and good music playing loudly.
 Flirt with someone of the same sex.
 Take a dog for a walk (if you don’t have one, borrow someone else’s!).
 Go for an outdoor run
 Kiss someone new!
 Choose a project to start working on over winter…
 Get a deluxe spa pedicure. Try not to wriggle too much when they scrub your tootsies!
 Do pilates outdoor on the grass
 Throw a party in celebration of how goddamn fabulous you are.
 Make a point of wearing all of your favourite summer dresses.
 Stock up on jangly bracelets and unusual rings at a flea market.
 Take some risks, and make a couple of choices which make you nervous.
 Go for a bike ride with your best friend.
 Rock a fabulous sun-hat while you still can.
 Go bare-legged as often as possible!
 Sneak into a swimming pool.
 Spend some quality alone time in saucy underwear.
 Go skinny-dipping with your BFF.
 Make a commitment to wearing heels at least one day a week.
 Lie around in the grass with your sunglasses and a pair of headphones on. Bliss.
 Buy flowers and arrange them yourself.
 Swear off drama!
 Make a mixtape which commemorates your summer.

Sep 15, 2013

Daily Note

That feeling when you realize you may like someone more than you planned to and start freaking out about your behaviors.....

Aug 26, 2013

Daily Note

Have you ever had that feeling when you want to believe something so badly that it hurts? But then the fact that you still have doubts even though you want to believe troubles you even more? It's like I am stuck in this intersection and voices from all directions telling me different things. I'm lost and confused and even more frustrated because I don't know whom to believe, even myself. 

After all, people only see what they want to believe, and believe in what they want to see. 

Aug 22, 2013

Things I love, and hate, Thursday

1. I'm moving to a new apartment on Saturday, which means lots and lots and lots of packing. Last night, I went through all my college notes and realized that it really is over. It was a bittersweet feeling throwing things away. It was like closing another chapter of my life. I always have trouble letting go of the past.

2. Moving to a new apartment also means that I get to decorate my room all over again. I am actually excited for my new room since I saved several paychecks for all the furniture. Exceptionally excited about these pillows.

3. It has been said that among relationships, money and career, you can only have the most two out of three at one time. I feel like I'm dealing with so much financial stuff right now my head is about to burst open any moment. I wish I had stayed at home longer so I could learn all these things from my parents, instead of struggling and trying to learn everything on my own now. I hate making big decisions, especially when they are money related. At least the other two are going ... okay.

4. Got my learner's permit (finally, feel like this is missing teenage-hood right here). Next step, getting that carrrrrrrrr. Another big decision to make, and a complicated one too. Nonetheless, it's exciting. Look at this sexy baby though ...

5. List of grad schools is finalized. Time to tackle those personal statements and applications. GRE exams are lining up, too. Deep breath, I can do this.

6. Month 3 of pilates with Cassey Ho. I can see/feel all the muscles on my body toning up. Also able to get up to 3 miles much faster now. I need to work extra hard on my diet if I want to lose a bit more weight though.

7. Red ombre hair - highlight of the month. Every year I would go home to get a hair cut and styling from my aunt, since I can't do it this year, I had to pay for it because my hair was bothering me so much. It cost me an arm and a leg but I was extra happy with it. Bright bright bright red and soft too.

8. My friends have recently introduced me to this casino place, more like they go there for the gambling and I go there to watch them play. The spa here is another story. I miss my spa sessions in Vietnam. I feel like my body is aching for a spa day so badly. Maybe next time when I get a chance to, I'll come back here just to treat myself to something nice.

9. Convinced the best friend to get snapchat. Getting his snaps and random short videos every day makes me so happy. It makes me feel like that 7000 miles gap between us is really not that far apart.

10. Learned so many new things this month, including football and cars. I could see why guys are so into these things. I guess I am such a girl after all because I get so confused and ask the most clueless questions. Feel like one of those super girly-acting-dumb girls, but I am actually clueless. It is fun learning new stuff though, and great topics to get those guys talking too.

11. Looking forward for people to come back to school, and hopefully, it will be a fun and eventful semester for Sigma this year too.

It's been a productive month for me, with a few relaxing short trips here and there. September, let's make it a good month too. 

P/S: Successfully squeezed in a post while waiting for my friend to get out of work. Having Starbucks to myself is the best.

Aug 15, 2013

“It’s probably not just by chance that I’m alone. It would be very hard for a man to live with me, unless he’s terribly strong. And if he’s stronger than I, I’m the one who can’t live with him. … I’m neither smart nor stupid, but I don’t think I’m a run-of-the-mill person. I’ve been in business without being a businesswoman, I’ve loved without being a woman made only for love. The two men I’ve loved, I think, will remember me, on earth or in heaven, because men always remember a woman who caused them concern and uneasiness. I’ve done my best, in regard to people and to life, without precepts, but with a taste for justice.” 
― Coco Chanel

Aug 11, 2013

Daily Note

I thought after all this time I would no longer write about you but here I am again. I try not to because every time I do, it is full of sadness, regrets, anger or frustration. But I like to write because I know once I'm done writing about something, I won't have to be stuck with those thoughts for days. I simply put everything into words, leave them here and move on.

After all this time, I'm still not sure how I really feel, or how we really feel about each other in that matter. I could be lying in bed one Friday night and miss you like I would miss my Starbucks green tea latte. Then I would get dressed, go out, meet a cute guy, and forget all about my pathetic lonely self a few hours earlier. I could be waking up next to you one Sunday morning then get into a fight with you later that night and would refuse to see you again for the next two months. I could be writing you emails that make you run for the hills then the next day I would tell you to stop bother me so I could be with another guy. I am a selfish person. I do everything for myself. However, when it comes to you, I wonder if I really am doing everything for myself, or I am just getting frustrated after days and months of waiting for you to realize what I am to you. 

I hate that I turn into the jealous and sarcastic girl around you. I am never that way around any other guy because I trust all my guys completely, just like how I used to trust you with all my mind. Sometimes I do things that I am not completely proud of, so I believe that it is the same case for everyone. We are all human. We make mistakes. We are all young. We lose control of our minds sometimes and do things that we would like to slap ourselves in the face for the next day. But I always want to believe that no matter what happens, it will always be me whom they come back to in the end. I am a confident girl after all. Yet, when I see you or hear about you with someone else, I have this feeling in my stomach that drains all my energy. I feel that I am such a bad person for having double standards, for having all these thoughts and for getting upset because after all, who am I to you anyway?  "Whatever, I don't care" is my go-to sentence that I always tell myself and others when it comes to these situations. But do I really not? That knot in my stomach tells me that it's more like I don't want to know because I want to stay in denial, to only see what will make me happy and ignore what makes me sad. Then my mind would find reasons for me to look at things on the "bright" side, so that the next time I see you and the next time you put your arms around me, I will continue to live that lie. 

I know why it didn't work out between us and I know, from the bottom of my heart, that it never will. I am strong enough to fake my emotions and pretend like I don't care but not enough to bear all these doubts and pain. I am patient enough to keep forgiving things that you have done to me but not enough to wait for you to realize that I mean more to you than you think. I am selfish enough to want to protect my heart, but not enough to put it beyond everything else in my life and find ways to make you mine. 

I feel like I'm standing on a fragile glass floor that has become so fragile from so many times I stepped back and forth. If I don't move, I will fall and get hurt. If I step forward like I've done multiple times in the past, I could be safe. But at this point, the glass may break the moment I walk away and I would never be able to go back to where I was. Or what if I take a wrong step forward and everything shatters? 

What if in the end, no matter what I do, I would still end up falling and getting hurt? Then what do I do?

Aug 10, 2013

"Em muốn ôm cả đất
Em muốn ôm cả trời
Mà sao anh ơi... 
Em ko ôm nổi trái tim một con người"

Aug 8, 2013

Sài Gòn giấu anh kĩ quá ...

Crushes, and homesickness

This is definitely way pass my bed time and my eyelids are so heavy they just want to stay close. However, I want to finish writing this entry before I wake up tomorrow and let myself being carried away by my busy daily routine. 

This morning, I came across this video on the Facebook of one of my students. I have never been a big fan of Vietnamese movies or music because in my opinion they generally are not that great. Naturally, I don't follow them as often. This short movie produced by a group of Vietnamese in the US, either born here or came here to study abroad, however, caught my attention. To be honest, I didn't think neither the acting nor the story line was that great but the movie got me thinking. Although I chose a different path to study abroad and my story is far from similar to the one of the main actress, she still reminded me of the time when I first arrived at the US. That lonely feeling with no one around to share with how you feel, with occasional phone calls from home that just make you homesick even more, and with the simple happiness of having a friend to past time with. I was reminded of all the tears that I cried from being scared of not knowing what to do, surrounded by only strangers. The sixteen year old girl who tried to make her way into another culture, another country with so many new things to learn and too little support to lean on. The sixteen year old girl who decided to leave the comfort of her family to find her dreams and fight with disappointments and harsh reality. I have been in the US for more than six years now and I thought I would have been used to being by myself. That actually is not true. There are still moments when I get jealous of my friends who can go home for holidays, enjoy homemade food, receive care packages from their parents, etc. It is difficult sometimes to realize that I have to make all my decisions alone, without receiving any advice from my parents. Sometimes I wish I were still at an age when all I have to do is to listen to what my parents tell me to do and do it, without having to worry about what the consequences would be. It makes me wonder, why did I ever leave that zone of absolute comfort, warmth and carefreeness and wander into this cruel world? 

I spent the rest of the night watching short clips and videos about high school time in Vietnam. It's always been known to us that high school, especially the last two years, are the best time of one's life. Leaving the country before I could experience that "happiest moment", I can only imagine how it would be if I had stayed home instead. For the little bit of memory that I had, middle school was the best part of my life and I would relive that any day (although I'm not sure how I feel about having to go through all those rough exams and tests again). I think everyone would agree that what makes high school years so beautiful and memorable is because it's the transitioning period into adulthood. We experience the best and most innocent feelings: having a crush on someone and having a dream. I would say I miss that feeling of liking someone secretly and not having the courage to tell that person. Being the bold and straighforward girl that I am now, I don't think that feeling will ever come back. I would also say I miss that feeling when even a light touch makes so you feel so happy you could burst into bubbles and fly into the sky. But I wouldn't say that feelings now are not as desirable. It is true that my relationships nowadays involve playing games, texting, facebooking, fancy dates, movie nights, sleep overs, etc. A simple touch doesn't matter as much in a country where physical contact means nothing more than just friendliness. But I feel like the feelings that you get when you know that your feelings are being reciprocated are the same. The first of everything is always the most exciting. I have seen lots of guys for the past four years but I can still clearly remember the first time I got that confirmation from each of them, the moment when you know they feel the same and that you're not just a sad single and lonely girl with one-sided crush. Yes, I miss all the innocent hang-outs at the mall and hand-written notes to each other. I miss the awkward moment when we sit next to each others and have nothing to say. But I also love the moments when I can cuddle up to the familiar scent and feel that comfortable warmth surrounded me. I love the feeling of going to bed and wake up in the morning with pure happiness. 

It is true that there are lots of memories I want to cherish and that sometimes I look back and wish I could go back to the days when I were young. However, I believe that each stage of my life has its own excitement and things I can look forward to, and remember when I look back from the future. I believe that feelings are feelings, doesn't matter how you express it, doesn't matter how many times you have done it, the excitement and happiness that they bring about will still be the same. And isn't that what life a little bit less lonely, especially for a girl who is away from home like me? 

Jul 31, 2013

How's that blog going?

I have gotten the above question from some of my friends (who actually know how often I change my interests) about the status of my blog. Well, in case you're wondering, nope, I have not given up on the idea of starting my own not-very-personal blog. I have been spending the past several days doing research on how to start a blog, everything from concept to design. I took most of the advice from my most favorite bloggers: Gala Darling (she started Blogcademy!) and A Beautiful Mess (these two are just simply beyond awesome). It is actually interesting to learn about how to start a blog and all the processes that involved in maintaining one. No wonder why these people have to be full-time! It is tons of work and most of the time, these bloggers do everything by themselves (amazing!)

I am still working on the concept and the name of the blog, which I believe is the most important items that will set me apart from thousands of blogs out there. Yes, it is about catchy-ness and its appeal to the readers, but it also expresses who I am and what my blog will be about. You know, for every projects, the starting point is the hardest. I do have some ideas in mind and have been playing around with them but so far none stood out as that "special one" yet. Choosing a font for my banner, not surprising, takes a whole lot of time since I am very picky about fonts. Nonetheless, I do have a very good idea of what I want to write about and what topics I would be cover. I will proceed to make a list of those things soon

I am usually a very impatient person. When I think of an idea I have to start working on it right away, otherwise I'd just forget about it and move on. However, I really want to take this slow and spend lots of prep time for it. So I'm giving myself a deadline of Sep 1st before I launch my baby. September is the month for fashion after all, it's perfect.

In the mean time, these are the things I sleep on every night and will continue to do so for the next few weeks:

Tips for Bloggers
Blog Love E-Course: her class schedule serves as a check-list for me
Naming Your Blog: Gala did say it is not that important but I feel like it signifies a start so I want a good one regardless
Here's Gala's advice on starting a blog
More realistic view on Professional Blogging: At this stage, I don't think I want anything close to a full time professional blogging career. I just want to push/motivate myself toward learning about the things that I am interested in (Fitness, Fashion and maybe, food). Reading this article confirms my goal, actually.
After answering these questions, and actually write the answers down in my journal, I have a better sense of what I want to accomplish.

Point is, I still have a lot to learn and continue to learn it is.

Jul 26, 2013

The We-Dont-Give-A-Damn Midnight Skype Session

Last night, I went on Skype for the first time in 6 months (or more) to talk to my best gay friend. Yes, I am not afraid to broadcast to the entire world that I have the best best gay friend and I am sure he's proud to get that title too. Life has been busy for both of us. Me: summer road trips, settle down for work, figure what to do with my life, graduate schools, learn how to drive, and the list goes on. Him: music. That sums up our personality pretty well. I always want to do everything, always move on from one obsession to another. He is passionate about the one and only thing and does everything, including knocking down countless obstacles and b*tches on the way to pursue his dream. He is more of a dreamer and I am more of the realist. He's the vintage boy, I'm the edgy girl. Strange enough, we are best friends and will always be, even though we talk to each other no more than 5 hours per year. Half of the earth and 12 hour time difference put more strain on relationships than you think.

We talked about life, about relationships, about how we change and how f*cked up our ways of looking at life are. We commented on each other dry hair, pimpled face, fat thighs, skinny arms, drug-addict-look-like face and whatever-the-eff we are into. I told him all about my Sex-and-the-City relationship life. He told me about the b*tches of the showbiz world that he is in. He gave me advice on how to stop being so selfish and I gave him advice on what to eat for breakfasts and dinners. We talked about being in London, in Paris, in New York in 5 years. I listened to his practice-using-YouTube English accent, and he sat through my half-English-half-broken Vietnamese. 

One thing that will never change between us: we don't judge each other. I have heard from various friends who stopped hanging out with me, or him, simply because we have changed so much. True, I changed. He changed. Why does it matter? I told him that our personalities don't really change. The only thing that is different is that, with times, after being slapped in the face repeatedly by reality, our experience taught us a new way to look at life and to express ourselves according to that perspective. So what if I shaved half of my head and got seven piercings? So what if he got tattoos and started smoking? Everyone has their own way to express themselves and to announce to the world in a "B*tches, I'm here. Brace yourself" kind of way. We don't have to be intimidated by those judgmental looks, or get weak in the knees by those verbal attacks. We know within ourselves what we want to represent and what we are capable of. And we know, within ourselves, that out there, there will always be someone who appreciate us for who we really are. For me, he is the one that even if I show up with sharp-studded leather jacket and shorts, he would still give me the tightest hug then throw punches at me for hurting him with all them stupid spikes. 

It is always a good thing to be assured that there is always someone in the world who understands you, who doesn't judge you, who you can rely on to tell you the ugly truth yet gives you the best advice ever. It is someone whom after you talk to, you believe so much in yourself that you feel like you can conquer the world, in heels of course. 

Miss you so much babe. Can't wait until the next time we talk (which probably will be in 9999999 years). Let's keep working on our I-don't-give-a-f*ck attitude. 

Gotta be stylish to be my friend, eh?

I'm going to wander on another journey!

After graduating from college, I have had lots of free time on my hands and I've been struggling to fill up those empty time slots to make myself feel busy. There are many things I want to do, and there are many things I am interested in yet my main excuse when I was still in school was "I don't have time for that", "I have to focus on my study", "I have three exams next week", blah blah blah ... You know how that goes. Now I work only 5 hours a day, even studying for GRE, applying for graduate schools and spending 2 hours at the gym every day don't fill up all my free time. So what could be a better time for me to start doing something I've always wanted to do? I want to start blogging more seriously.

I've started my own blog since high school. However, it was more of a online diary type of thing where I write about relationships, trips, special occasions, feelings, etc. Reading blogs is a part of my daily life. I have a list of favorite blogs that I religiously go on every day and religiously swallow every single word and image that they post, hoping that maybe I will learn things from these successful, and amazing human beings. I secretly admire their courage to start something that most people nowadays still don't consider as "real profession". I want to be like them, I think to myself all the time. You know, these people have to start from somewhere and work their way up to where they are now. They don't just wake up and boom, there are 1 million plus subscribers to their blogs. So I decided for myself that I will start from some where too. Fashion is my passion. I've been told that my eyes sparkle when I talk about fashion. With my recent job, I discover that I am super fascinated by fitness and nutrition. I actually find lots of my friends come to me for fashion and fitness advice. I've gotten people interested in things that they never thought they would be interested in before.

This inspires me to start sharing what I am interested in and spread the words about all these amazing things that make me happy. I am not at the level of being able to write my own fashion or fitness advice articles, but I hope that by committing myself to start blogging seriously about these things, I will eventually accumulate enough knowledge and experience of my own to share. Practice, after all, makes perfect.

I'm sure that my writing and English is nowhere close to professional level yet, but I'm sure I can work on it. After all, writing is kind of your personal style too. Each blogger, I realized, have their own "writing" voice that I actually think that is how they talk normally in real life. I want to establish my own voice and my own writing style so that when people read my pieces, they will recognize me.

Cheers to myself for finally getting started on something I've always wanted to do. Let's see where this journey will take me.

July 26, 2013

Jul 22, 2013

Daily Note

It's been a while since I've watched anything Vietnamese. The fact that I couldn't go home this summer and possibly for another year does make me a little bit sad. I actually miss Vietnam more than I think. It's like a comfort zone for me. You know that feeling when you have a rough day at work then you get home to your mom's cooking and it feels like everything will be alright? That's how I feel about going home every year. It is like returning to safe zone after a glorious and tough battle. 

Anyway, about this video, it makes me miss the time of middle school when everything was so innocent. I miss that feeling of having a crush on someone and trying your best to get their attention, but at the same time afraid that your classmates would find about it and laugh at you. It wasn't about fancy dinner dates, parties with alcohol or vacation trips to the beach and such. I'm not saying that those things aren't nice. But back then it was purely just feelings, and how to let the other person know those feelings. So even the smallest gestures count. It was the time of no texting (or minimal texting anyway), no facebook, or anything of that sort. It was the time of calling and hanging up (I must have done that at least once) or trying to find excuses to go to each other's classes. 

Sometimes I wish my dating life can be like those days .... 

Jul 2, 2013

This summer (to be cont.)

This summer, I want to wear short skirts and high heels, to pack a picnic basket and spend Sundays in the sun. I want to lie in the grass and take photos of the clouds. I want to wear bright nail polishes and excessive amount of jewerly. I want to read novels, dance in public, and carry my camera everywhere.
I want to celebrate Midsummer in a park. I want to grow flowers and herbs and keep freshly-made iced tea in the fridge. I want to make avocado smoothies and get a tan. I want to play in the surf, have salt-kissed hair, and wear sunglasses all the time.
I want to move into a new apartment with big windows. I want to light candles, get intoxicated with the smell and with a bottle of wine. I want to listen to songs that give me goosebumps all over my entire body. I want to work my way through a huge stack of books, sleep deeply, and write down my dreams …

Jun 20, 2013

Post-Grad Adventures

So one of my friends has commented that I only write on my blog when I am stressed, or have problems with my relationships. As a result, my blog is pretty much depressing all the time. After hearing that, I thought to myself, do I really want my blog to be just a place to vent? It should be a journal of my life and things that happen, happy or sad, so whenever I go through it again it'll feel like reliving the memories

Now that I'm done with my undergrad career (yay me!) and my life has somewhat calmed down a little bit, I can have time to listen to my favorite 8tracks playlist and write about the past few crazy weeks. In case you want to be in the same mood as I am while writing this entry, here's the link to the playlist ;)

I'm going to skip senior week and Graduation week because there were just too many things going on. It was a blur. The only thing that I am absolutely sure was that it did not feel like I was graduating the entire time. Hell, I still don't feel like I have graduated now.

Graduated, finally.
A few days after my graduation, I hopped off the plane at LAX ;) This is my first time in California. I was so excited to leave dreadful Rochester weather and all the worries about jobs, housing, money, etc. behind and to get ready for two weeks full of fun and sun. My first stop was to visit Brian (even though he was staying with me for a week before that). We spent most of the days just catching up, exploring and watching movies. It was nothing exciting but I enjoyed every moment of it.

This photo pretty much sums up our lives for three days
It was then time for me and Wai Ling to get to our hotel and get ready for Sigma National Convention. After being active for three years, this was my very first convention. What can I say, whenever there are more than three Sigmas together, it's fun time. We spent days exploring Santa Monica, shopping, trying out food, tanning in the sun, and just doing silly things. I have always enjoyed traveling and exploring new places but having fun people to do it with me makes the experience ten times better. I also got to see Kenji, one of the PDPsi brothers that I was close with for some odd reason. I always like the feeling of having someone who is actually excited to see me again. Every time I hang out with Kenji, it feels like there should not be any worries in the world. One of the things I really appreciate about being a part of Sigma is that not only I have my sisters everywhere but I also get to know people from other organizations from everywhere. Being a social butterfly as I am, I love that feeling. Kenji took me to a few bars and clubs for the first few nights I was there. The clubbing scene here is so different than how it is in New York. I thought it felt kind of weird as first but I came to enjoy it.

Time flew by fast since we were so busy and were constantly on the go. All my muscles were hurting by the end of the third day of convention, partially because of all the activities that we had at the Sigmas Game. I also tried to work on my tan but apparently, California sun ain't got nothing on me. While everyone is dying with sunburnt, my skin didn't even change color .... Story of my life.

Before I realized, I was sitting in my best friend's car reminiscing about our old days. I haven't seen this guy for more than 5 years and it felt so strange now that we are all grown up. Well, that was the beginning of the best week of vacation that I've been on recently. 10 years of friendship does make a difference. I am not sure if there is anyone else who understands me as much as this guy and treats me as well as him. We went to movies, had meals with friends, watched the sunset, and did tons of other things. He knew how to pick food and places that I enjoy. He got me Starbucks every morning, prepared breakfast and lunch before he went to work and let me fall asleep on car rides back after long days. He actually made me think to myself that I actually deserve to be treated this way and anyone who wants to be boyfriend should get to at least 75% of his level. We'll see how that goes *laugh*. I also enjoyed seeing other friends from middle school that I had not seen for ages, including my crush in 8th grade. Haha, he still looks at gorgeous and is still as charming as ever. If only ;)

My favorite pic of us 
I think the best part of my trip was Disneyland. Everyone who knows me knows how much of a Disney fanatic I am. I have been excited about this even before I got on the plane to Cali. It was like the childhood experience that I never had and you know, being a kid is always fun. I truly and fully enjoyed every moment of it from the morning until night falls. Everything was magical and I felt like I could not be happier. No wonder why everyone says that Disneyland is the happiest place on earth.

Let's be young all over again
Soon enough, it was the last day of my stay :( We made use of all the time that we had and made a short trip to San Diego, only after we stopped at an adorable boat house for brunch. I really like San Diego as a city, much better than other parts of Cali that I've been too. Every other place is too slow and I miss that fast-pace, busy feeling of the East Coast. San Diego has more of the big city feeling so I like it a little bit better. Moving here though is another story.

I was so tired by the end of my short but sweet trip that I slept through the entire flight back to Rochester, then slept through the next three days with the exception of waking up for dinners only. I was being such a bum, haha.

Shortly after I got back to Rochester, I set off to Michigan with Sierrah to help her move into her apartment. At this point, my housemates have agreed that I actually don't live in the house because I run off to other states every chances I get. I wish my life could be that way. A week of relaxing (that involved lots of moving and furniture shopping) passed by and sadly but surely, it was time for me to settle down and start my stable summer life.

As much as I miss my house from last summer, I'm sure this summer will be a great one too and I'm looking forward to lots of adventures, and lots of sun :)

May 1, 2013

Days like these

You are lying awake in bed, staring at the ceiling. You don’t feel like doing anything. All you want to do is curl up into a ball and cry, but the tears don’t come.

It’s not heartbreak, you think. You have to be in love to have heartbreak. It has to be a boyfriend or girlfriend or wife or partner walking out on you for it to be heartbreak, the type where it feels like your insides have been put through a blender. And you weren’t actually going out with them, were you? Though it had been a couple of months, and you were kind of hoping that they’d look up and actually ask you to make it official, but instead the opposite had happened. That’s what you get for being optimistic, you think. They didn't even reject you or anything, they just said it was not the right time.

So, you wonder if you’re even entitled to feeling upset. Probably not, but you can’t feel guilty for having emotions. This must be something else if it’s not heartbreak. Heart-scraped knees. Heartbruise. You can forgive those Greek philosophers who used to think the heart was the seat of all emotions: it’s not your brain that hurts. It’s your chest. You can feel your pulse fluttering against your spine, and there’s a sense of a heavy weight crushing your lungs.

Time goes on, in that annoying way time does. Even when it feels like the world has ended, time will carry on in its usual no-nonsense linear fashion. You know you should eat but you feel too full.

“TOO FULL OF SADNESS”, you announce to your friends via text, playing up the melodramatic aspect because it’s easier if you make it funny, put on a mask, act like it’s not bothering you. And it shouldn’t, should it? It’s not your fault. It’s nobody’s fault. It’s just a thing that happened.

Eventually you get up. You stare at the shower for a while, and then decide it’s not worth it.  You start feeling irritated over little things, the amount of time and effort you put into this.  You end up sitting in the kitchen in the dark with a glass of wine, because it’s not the brewing alcoholism your mother warns you against if you have one glass of wine when you’re feeling upset, is it?

You wonder if emotions are liquids. When you stand up, all the hurt seems to pool in the same place in an acute ball of unhappiness. But it doesn’t seem so bad lying down, like everything’s spread out across your whole body.

You go back to bed and fall asleep with the light on because you don’t feel like turning it off.

It’s not a good night. Consciousness keeps creeping back, unbidden, even though you try and shut it down. You turn over and feel so, so tired, but not sleepy. After half past five, sleep doesn’t come again. You stare at the curtains and watch them lightening by degrees. The world outside is waking up. It’s a brand new day and the sun is shining so brightly you know it will hurt your eyes.

You probe your chest out of curiosity, the way you do when you have a new injury you’re trying to work out. This is the beginning, a dark red mark on your skin only you can see. You know it will go through a muted rainbow, blue and purple and green, and then an angry brown, and then yellow. And then one day you’ll feel for your yellow bruise and it’ll be gone. It will happen: it just takes time. And hell, you don't even know yet if it will leave a bruise yet. You just need to give it some time before deciding whether it is something that will actually bruise you.

You get up.

Apr 29, 2013

Daily Note

I really should learn that I don't always get what I want. Things happen. Time to move on.

Mar 13, 2013

Spring Break

This week has been great thus far.  The sun has been shining and everything feels a bit lighter than in weeks past.  Having spring break really helps me to catch up on sleep, and on things that I have fallen behind, like physics lectures. 
I always feel rushed.  The moment I sit down to breathe, guilt over what is not being done settles in.  Has anyone else been here before?  When I do school work, a nagging feeling that I should be finishing organizing and scheduling that event for my sorority creeps in.  Finally, when I begin to start planning these events, I thought of how I could be studying.  And have I been taking the time to hang out with my friends (it's my senior year after all), or am I too busy with planning and scheduling the future to live in the moment?  And so it goes.  The whole thing is exhausting and vicious, really.  
My priorities need to be redrafted and refined, which may mean letting a few things go. But I already thought that I have let go of many things this year. It was the number one priority thing on my new year resolution list: to let go. 
Well, I guess for now I should just enjoy spring break. The weather in Rochester is extremely bipolar. It felt like spring for the past few days, up until this morning when I walked to school. Then out of the sudden, it was like a snow storm in the middle of winter. Regardless, I'm enjoying myself by going out for dinner with friends, playing video games and having movies marathon, and catching up on physics. 
A few days more and NYC here I come for more fun :)
To be updated. 

Mar 11, 2013

Daily Note

It's been a while that I have watched a movie that gave me all types of emotions, ever since Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I guess. I had this conversation with my friend last night before I fell asleep. Apparently I had a weird taste in movies, and the way I watch movies is also different than normal people. For me to find a person to watch movies with is extremely difficult, and that makes me miss the days in high school where Melody and I went searching for all our favorite movies and spent days watching them. I miss having a person to just have all these movie discussions with. Anyway, the Perks of being a Sunflower has totally made my day. 

Sam: Why do I and everyone I love pick people who treat us like we're nothing? 
Charlie: We accept the love we think we deserve. 

"This one moment when you know you're not a sad story. You are alive, and you stand up and see the lights on the buildings and everything that makes you wonder. And you're listening to that song and that drive with the people you love most in this world. And in this moment I swear, we are infinite."

Also I realized today that I am getting so used to having people keeping me company at night. That may sound really bad but I totally sleep better when I have someone next to me, even if I just do my own things. Wonder if I should fix this habit ....

Mar 6, 2013

Daily Note

"Sometimes, change is good."
- The Carrie Diaries

Feb 26, 2013

Things I love Monday

I haven't been able to stay up and stay focus all night for a while. Despite my many attempts to stay up last semester, I kept falling asleep and ended up never make it through the night. Since I actually finished more work than I planned, I am giving myself a pat in the back and a moment for myself (I can't really go home before the sun rises anyway).

I have had an extremely unproductive weekend during which I basically had no motivation to do anything. I was getting scared for a moment since I technically was binge sleeping all weekend. I mean, who doesn't like to sleep in and such, but for me to not be able to get up before noon is somewhat ridiculous. I always feel terrible if I wake up any time after 10am because I feel like I have wasted so much time of the day sleeping. I was just so worn out after the two exams and The Vagina Monologues that by the time Sunday came around, I just wanted to do nothing.

Speaking of TVM, I can't believe this was the last show of my undergraduate career, and I have doubts that I would ever be involved in the show again. Despite lots of dramas, and problems, we put together a kick-ass show, as always. I was rather unmotivated the entire semester and had to drag myself to rehearsal every week. I guess we were too busy stressed out about little organizational details we lost sight of what we were trying to fight for. TVM has always meant so much to me and I am so glad that I have never failed to be a part of it, and put all my efforts into it. I was feeling slightly down that my closest friends here didn't come out to support but I guess it didn't really matter.

Compared to the Sunday during which I did nothing, I accomplished a lot today, despite it being a Monday. I was slightly overwhelmed with the amount of work I have to do for Sigma and was freaking out. I was all tensed and irritated when I was asked "What was one thing that make you happy today?" and that one question made me realize that things are not at all that bad. So I'm making a list of things I love Monday, or Saturday, or Sunday, or all days.
  • I am one step closer to one thing that I have been doing for Sigma ever since I joined. Of course it is still in the preliminary planning stage, and I have lots of meetings and writing to do, but if I can make this happen, it'd be one of my most significant accomplishments. 
  • I should appreciate the friends that I have and the connections that I have made much more. I was being stuck and had no idea how to make this bar party happen, a friend stepped in and helped me out so much that all I need to do from now on is just making a decision (skip all the phone calls and logistic talks). Or when I don't even have to ask twice and people are willing to help me out with other things. 
  • Encouraging messages throughout my super thick stack of notes that I have to memorize by tomorrow. I almost gave up on studying when I saw the note and it actually kept me going.

  • Really really really good indie music
  • Really big cups of tea
  • Checking off all the things on my to-do list + check off things for the next day too
  • Homemade waffles + whipped cream + chocolate ice cream + blueberries at midnight
  • Actually crying my eyes out watching a movie =.=
  • Long hot showers
  • Falling asleep next to someone who keeps me warm
  • Extremely good workouts at the gym
  • When my best guy friend and I both agree that he knows me best
  • People who give me confidence and make me feel good about myself
  • Great conversations with my mom
  • Looking at apartments ~~~ and thinking about adopting a cat, or a chinchilla
  • Cream cheese stuffed french toast at midnight
  • Realizing that sometimes going with the flow is not too bad of a thing, maybe
  • A really long list of things I love
Let's hope this week will be a good one too. I'll be [fairly] free after that exam on Thursday. 

Feb 15, 2013

Lunar New Year, and new hair!

I love it when I go on my favorite blog and find a great quote of the day:

“The right man will move heaven and earth to be with you–the real, authentic you with all your wonderful flaws.” – Ann Sheybani

It's that time of the year when I have no time to do any fun stuff and have to spend my weekends away at the library. I thought my senior year would be all about partying, clubbing, baking and gaming. But no, I am so busy during the week that the only time I can study for my classes is during the weekend. It is a good type of busy though. There's so much planning that I have to do that even for an organizing freak like me, it is a little bit overwhelming. Working around the schedule of 20 different people is not an easy thing to do. Also, trying to calm people down when they are stressed is also difficult. I am never the soft type of person and I am always afraid that I may end up scaring people more than calming them down. I really hope that I am doing a good job at what I do, and if not, well, I will always have my friends to help me out. 

Despite all those complaints about being busy, I did go out three nights a row last weekend and that was a little bit too much even for me ... Staying up until 4am the entire weekend to go out and during the week to do work drained the energy out of me. I really want to keep the healthy habit of waking up early to do work and have enough time to go to the gym every other day, if not every day. I'm trying to commit to something regular, for once. 

Lunar New Year passed by so quietly and quickly for me. I really should come up with something and start writing my New Year Resolution blog entry as I always do. Note-to-self: do that once the two exams are over. I did get to go out for Asian food with my friends and spent the rest of the day doing nothing. Also, this year was my last time I got to watch China Nite. I wished I had the time to be involved in it but oh well, it was entertaining to be able to sit back and enjoy the whole show too. I am so happy for my CSA little for putting up such a successful show. She worked so hard for it >___<

Besides that, the highlight of my week, or even month, probably is that I finally was able to get the haircut that I've been waiting forever for. I have been growing my hair long (and tried to fight the temptation of cutting it off every other week), and spending so much time and efforts to dye it, curl it, take care of it and make sure it looks healthy just for this half-shaved style. The lady who did my hair did such a good job and it turned out exactly as I wanted it to be, which made me extremely happy. I love that feeling when you wait for so long to do something and finally get to do it and it turns out to be amazing. One more thing off my bucket list. Now I need to think of something else to do :)

Loving it

Feb 1, 2013

Daily Note

Waking up at 8am to a snowy day after a late night out was not the best thing I had in mind to start my Friday. I was dreading the 20 min plus walk to work, just thinking about all the snow. It took me forever to get ready because all I wanted to do was curl back up in bed and go to sleep.

Once I got out though, I wasn't bad at all. The snow was soft and pretty and I actually walked extra slowly since I was enjoyed myself a little bit too much playing with the snow. My ipod read my mood this morning and played super good music too.

End of my 2nd week of the last semester my senior year. I have almost no work at all and that makes me feel super uneasy. I can't believe I can afford the time to read ahead of class, have lunches and dinners with friends, and go to the gym every night. For the past 3 years, this schedule of mine is unheard of. I half want to get busier, but at the same time want to stay like this just to enjoy myself. Although, I think I have pushed myself a little bit too hard running. My entire body is in pain, good pain though. I need to stop running like a mad person just to get all the frustration out. I was trying to get over a certain thing on Wednesday that I ran until I couldn't feel my muscles any more. That wasn't a good idea. What's the point of putting my body through pain because of someone else? Oh well ...

Anyway, on another note, now that Trissha is back, our entire Rho class is together again. We had dinner together for the first time after 4 months on Wednesday, and it felt so good to have all of us. It's not like we always have to be together to have fun, but having all 5 at the same time gives off a completely different dynamic. I can never imagine how different it would be if there wasn't 5 of us. I feel like we wouldn't be Iota Rho in the first place. I don't spend a whole lot of time talking to Trissha as much as I talk to Wai Ling (since she lives with me) or Soyoun (since she stays over all the time). Yet, I like spending time with her just because it gives me this calm and relaxing feeling. Like, I can get worked up, stressed out and angry at things but as long as Trissha is there, I won't go over the top. Going out with Trissha has its own fun. We had so much fun clubbing last night it made me wish that summer or spring can come faster so all 5 of us can make that trip to Vegas like we planned too.

Soon enough, I'm going to be busy again. I have been waiting for this semester every since I joined Sigma. I really hope I will do a great job. If I can finish this year strong, that would be the most accomplished thing I have ever done so far.

Snowy Friday ... Gotta bake something warm while hanging out with the Rhos tonight.

My hair is not liking this weather at all. So dry .....

Jan 28, 2013

Daily Note

Love, love, LOVE the feeling of waking up at 6am and have a fresh cup of coffee at 7am, while being productive. Hope I can keep this habit for a while before school work starts to pile up on me and those all-nighters start to roll in.

From Thought Catalog:

Begin to feel yourself repair in a way only marked by growing apathy. Realize that such apathy, this lack of consideration for the person who used to dominate every waking thought, is the true opposite of love. Laugh at your clumsy attempts in the first crushing days after the separation to mask your unrequited longing with a kind of pretend hatred. Realize that you never hated this person, only resented them for not reciprocating your desperation. Understand, though, that “forgetting” was never the real intention, even if it’s what you needed to say to get yourself on the path of recovering. See that “forgetting” is not something we can ever strive for as humans, but rather a sense of “accepting.” Start to realize that, on your horizon, there is a point at which you are fully independent from the pressing thoughts of a former love. Walk towards it with conviction, and know that one day all of this will seem a distant memory

Jan 26, 2013

Daily Note

I have been so low in energy the past few days that I start to think maybe seasonal depression really has hit me ... I have been turning down all the hangouts and parties because all I want to do is curl up in my comfy and warm bed and sleep. During the day, I just want to catch up on all my school work so that I can have time for myself to read and do nothing. I think the habit at home has settled in and now I can't bring myself to be busy again =.= Just thinking about having to get ready for a semi-formal dinner tonight, and being at a party after that drains all the energy from me. Ahhhhh, why am I turning into such a boring person?!?!

On a completely different note, I was unpacking my suitcases  this morning, and opened the food container that my dad packed for me. I remembered telling him: "Dad, I want to bring these food. But if it spills on my clothes and shoes, and bags, I'll cry. Maybe I should not bring them." After I said that, he spent like an hour or more carefully packing all the food for me. They are so ridiculously well-packed that it took me so long to open them =.= And just like that, homesickness started to kick in. What would I do without my parents? I'm too lazy to even bring food for my own sake ... I didn't even get out of the house to go shopping for any of them. I also realized that they packed probably the entire store of vitamin tablets for me, since my doctor told me that I was doing so poorly because of lack of vitamin. They even got different ones for my skin and my hair. It's not like I can't go buy vitamins on my own ...  Speaking of which, I still have no appetite and have no idea when the last time I had a decent meal since I got to the US. Ah, if only I get a homecooked meal now.

See, I know this is going to happen. Every single time I go home for break, I'm turning into such a spoil and fussy child ....

Jan 25, 2013

Daily Note

Jetlag is definitely messing with my schedule. I am so tired during the late afternoon when I actually need to do work, and now I am wide awake yet don't feel like doing anything. I probably will force myself to go to sleep anyway in order to fix my schedule.

I guess I am the type who can be happy over very little things. I was pretty sad on the plane, but then I passed out for almost 16 hours straight and woke up to the most beautiful sunrise that I have ever seen and that put a smile on my face and made me thought to myself: "Wherever I'm going, it can't be that bad if the sky there is so beautiful, right?" Also, I met the nicest guy on the plane who literally took care of me the entire time, ordering meals for me and such while I slept my plane ride away. I always find it nice when I get to meet interesting people on the plane who share random conversations, knowing you will never see each other again, but being sincere enough to keep each other company to make the trip not so painful. I also ran into two nice ladies who literally showed me the way from JFK to the subway and gave me careful direction how to get to Penn Station. Overall my trip was pretty long and tiring, but I met so many people who helped me through various parts of the trip that I don't even thing I deserve to complain about it.

First day back to the US wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I guess I exaggerated my mood a little bit. I am not too depressed about the weather nor too homesick. I mean, consider there were times in the past when I literally was too homesick to do anything. I do have the symptom where I don't want to see or meet anyone, and being a bit antisocial, but that's about it. The weather is fairly cold, typical Rochester, but the snow is actually pretty.

Finally, it's my last semester of undergraduate years. I am a little bit less worried about graduation such now that I am physically at school and have been able to meet with my major advisors and discussed my credits. I guess I was just overthinking since I had nothing to do when I was home.

I probably should unpack but I don't feel like doing it just yet, lol. Although I realized, again, that I have this ridiculous "scent memory", or at least that's what I called it. I changed my room air freshener today, and it happens to be the same scent as I used two winters ago. The smell of my room, the cold weather and the snow falling keep bringing back all the memories of that winter. I told my friend "I need to change the scent of my room every time I move on to a new guy" and she laughed at me. But really, I wasn't kidding. I pay lots of attention to smell and I associate different smell with different memories so strongly that smelling the same scent will remind me of everything that happened. Using the same scent is kind of like opening a diary for me. It's ridiculous. I could change the air freshener, but then again, should I? It is my favorite scent. Besides, those were nice memories after all, remembering how the guy used to start the car 15 minutes before hand, running through the cold to get the car and parking it as close to my building as possible to make sure that I didn't have to be cold even for a minute. I love little but nice gestures. Those are the things that impress me the most. But then again, I like to be treated like a princess so every single little needs of mine need to be catered to. Maybe that's why I like small gestures because they show how much attention one pays. I like attention to details, just because I am very observing, lol.

I really hope this last semester will be a good one, so that every time I use this favorite scent from Bath and Body Works I can always think of good memories.

Jan 22, 2013

Home is where the heart is

Sometimes I get annoyed at myself for writing about the same topics over and over again, but it is actually really nice that every year I can re-read things that I did previous years and see how much I have changed, or haven't changed.

Every year I would write about my vacation in Vietnam, and how it feels when I have to leave home and come back to school. I thought it would be the same every year but when all my entries are in fact all different. It was so much fun reading about times spent with family and friends, and how depressed I was every single year, lol. 

I thought I had an extra long break this year since I took an extra week off school. It feels just as short. I can't believe that my last college vacation will be over in approximately 12 hours. And I haven't even packed yet (showing how exciting I am to be back to school, not). I guess it also because I spent an entire week visiting my sister in Philly. I'm glad I was able to spend Christmas with her, otherwise she would be lonely during Christmas being so far away from the rest of the family. Marriage life is not easy to adapt to after all. I also got to see New York city during Christmas for the first time and hung out with my best friend. We used to get together every time I came home, but now since that Dung also studies in the US, I haven't seen her for almost 3 years. Although we still talk on the phone quite often, I feel like we never run out of things to tell each other. I miss all those times when we laugh, we cry, we curse out boys over the phone. It was so much nicer to see her in person, and introduced her to my Rochester friends (thanks to Jess and Marcial who escorted us all around the city).  I love love love the city during Christmas full with people and exciting things. All the holiday shop displays put me in such a Christmas mood. My dream would be able to go to all the famous shows in the city, like Lion King at Broadway, the Rockettes at Radio Music Hall, or the Nutcrackers ballet show. I still have so many dates with the city I guess.

Other than that, I didn't really do much this break. My house is so far from everything that it's such a pain to go anywhere. I feel bad making my parents drive me 45 minutes back and forth just so that I can have coffee with friends. I did have lots of fun catching up with people though. I got to see those who I worked with for the past 3 years (well, during the time when I'm home only). I love the fact that I am the youngest teacher among everyone, so everyone spoil me hardcore, and take me everywhere to eat and play. I miss my students too, even if I''m not that much older than them, they look up to me in such a way that makes me smile. Being a part of Yola is probably the best decision I have ever made. If I didn't come across that tiny ad on a random Vietnamese website, I wouldn't meet the all the talented and smart people that I am friend with right now. At the same time, they are so down to earth and so much fun to hang out with. I always feel like I belong, right at the first moment. Especially now that not many of my friends are home anymore, without them, I would have no idea who to spend time with when I come home.

I am also very happy to see Mew and Thu. No matter how many years have gone by and how much we have changed, we can always sit down and catch up on our lives. I barely talk to either of them during the year anymore since we are all busy and our groups of friends and things we do have become so different. It makes me sad a little bit, but it is something that you can't control as you grow up. As long as we can still come together and there's no awkward silence when we are together, that's all it matters to me.

 Besides having meals and chilling at coffee shops, I spent lots of time this break at home helping my mom around the house. It is actually really fun teaching her how to bake, and seeing how my dad try to tell us what to do too. Both of them are still picky at food as usual. If my cake is not perfect, taste and appearance, then no one would touch it =.= I have also become this old lady who would enjoy relaxing at home than spending all the time to get ready to go out. I mean, I do that all the time when I'm in the US and I never have time to relax there, so may as well take advantage of it while I can.

Such a perfect life

This guy, 3 weeks without replying to any of my text or fb messages, I thought he disappeared on me again like 2 years ago. I know he only shows up when he needs me, yet to hear his voice, and to see his face comforted me. Even if I don't hear from him, I know he will always be here for me to come home to. I have to thank him for always noticing my sadness without me saying anything. Times like those, he would drive me to the ocean and hold my hand all the way. I love these spontaneous trips, because I love the ocean and enjoy being taken care of. Also, he is probably the only person who can show up at my door and get my parents' approval to take me on an overnight trip.
Not a big fan of taking these types of pictures
 but  moments like these are important to capture

For many reasons, this year, I'm dreading going back to the states more than ever. I just don't want to leave. I even consider the option of coming back home for a year like my parents suggested. I have nothing here and no one here. I know I would go crazy because of boredom and lack of freedom if I stay home, but I actually considered it for a second. You know, people always say that you're only excited to go to a place when there's something waiting for you, whether it's new adventures, or memories, new people, or old people. And the reason why you want to stay at place is because there are still things that you don't want to leave behind. In the past, yes, I have been attached to being home and I am reluctant to go away because I like the things I have here. But I was not afraid to come back to the US because I knew I had something to look forward to. I had people I wanted to see, people that I missed, and those who wanted me to be back. This year, I feel like it would not hurt if I don't come back. I don't have anyone waiting for me. No one who would  be dying to see me, and would be happy because of my presence. I know that there are friends who have been asking about me and told me they wanted to see me back, but I'm sure it is not like my presence will affect their lives that much. Or at least I don't feel that way. Previous years, I felt the importance of my presence, or putting it another way, there was someone to make me feel special. Now, I know the only people who will be really sad without me would be my parents, and my little sisters. Other than that, no one cares. It doesn't matter. Man, what have I done to become such an replaceable person. I look at my favorite Chanel quote everyday and still don't know how to be "different" in such a place to become irreplaceable. 

I probably am also afraid of all the stress I have to face once I get back. It is so nice not having to worry about anything but which kind of face mask I should put on today. It is so nice to watch movies and play all day until midnight, get a full 8 hour of sleep and wake up to delicious breakfasts and coffee. There's no crappy meals eating on the way to work. There's no long nights with hardly any sleep. No exams, no work up to my nose, and no one to make me sad, or stressed. 

I'm such a spoiled kid at home, and it makes me wonder why I wanted to leave this place in the first place. I would have such a luxurious and carefree life if I had stayed here. At the moment I'm writing this, my dad is packing my luggage and my mom is cutting up more fruits and making juice for me. See, don't have to lift a finger for anything.

However, I think it's time for me to get back to the US, and get back to real life. My spirit belongs to no where but I think my heart belongs to this hometown of mine, where the people who care for me will always be.
Vietnam Jan '13