January is over!

January is over!

At the beginning of this year I made four resolutions:

  1. Do not buy any more clothes
  2. Do not add to to-do or to-read list until I’m done
  3. Save 90% of paycheck/month
  4. Stretch every day

I did well one goal (1) because I didn’t buy anything! I did spend a lot on Spotify, Starbucks, gas, and random snacks cuz I commute every day 😦 . I definitely failed on goal (2) because my to-do and to-read list is always growing. But the spirit to not add tasks for myself is there.

I think I just about meet my goal of saving 90% of my paycheck a month because I’m living at home and not spending a whole lot on rent!!! That is wonderful. I can do better about stretching every day though. It’s bad because I get lazy and just want to go to sleep. The story of my life right now is waking up at 5am and never sleeping enough 😥 .

A new skill I’d like to learn

A new skill I’d like to learn is negotiating. I came up on this book called “Good Girl’s Guide to Negotiating” yesterday in a box of old books being given away. I took it right away because I thought that is something I could use (not because I am a good girl.) It’s because I’ve been finding myself in these undesirable situations at work, and I know it’s not right.

I want to know how to get out of them and not be in a bad situation in the first place!

It’s hard to negotiate because as the new person at work, I want to satisfy people instead of being needy. I’ve had poor experiences speaking up at a previous job, and unfortunately in a lot of cases you get punished for speaking up. (I am still paying dearly for it 😦 )That’s why I’d like to learn to ask for what I want/need in a way that other people can live with too. I’m sure it’s a skill I need in my work and personal life. It’s like in Princess Academy! Miri was negotiating for the royal cousins and her hometown, so she could help them.

I can think of it as a skill that helps me. It’s just the next level of speaking and listening! 🙂

Eiffel Tower


My new year’s resolution was to draw and color more. Here it is! I’m bad at watercolor. I will have to watch YouTube tutorials to find out how to do it properly. I love color pencils but I’m going to use crayon and watercolor so I get more comfortable with it.

Happiness is …

  • Reading a cozy book or a really great story
  • Being awake under the blankets in your bed
  • Using a recipe you’ve always wanted to try
  • Making something!
  • Small pets ❤
  • Hugging a baby
  • Looking into someone’s eyes
  • Getting a haircut!
  • Wearing new & old clothes
  • Singing along to emotional songs
  • Being together and sharing
  • Looking at the ocean
  • Friendships old and new ❤
  • Listening to comforting voices
  • Doing something you’ve always wanted to do
  • Finishing a big project or a small one
  • Getting off a roller coaster ride
  • Being comfortable and nerdy

On my to read list …

I have 169 books on my to read list. Here are a few of the fun ones:

  • 2 Fuzzy, 2 Furious by  Shannon & Dean Hale: I want to read this because I loooved the first Squirrel girl book! So much fun. My type of superhero.
  • Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle: I loved Glee and this sounds like Kurt’s story. My guilty pleasure.
  • The Canning Season by Polly Horvath: I just finished Everything On a Waffle and am a new fan of Polly Horvath.
  • Turtles All the Way Down by John Green: I actually did enjoy An Abundance of Katherines, so I think I will give this one a try.
  • Yagua Days by Cruz Martel: My wonderful mentor Ann Wilson recommended it to me so I shall read it.
  • The Wild Robot Escapes by Peter Brown: I looooved the first Wild Robot book and will definitely read this one. One of my favorite books from last year.
  • Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon: My guilty pleasure because I loved The Sun is Also a Star. A fun and amazing read!

Living in a dream all day

The Girl Who Drank the Moon – I finally read this! It reminds me of Adam Gidwitz and Grace Lin’s fairy tale journeys too. However, I didn’t find it as engaging as the other ones. I think I like fairy tales with a lot of interesting side characters and more realistic place setting. It reminds me of Shannon Hale too. Fairy tales forever!

The Problem with Being Slightly Heroic – It’s a Bollywood movie for kids in book form. I really liked it! Uma is a cozy writer.

26 Fairmount Avenue – I didn’t know that Tomie DePaola wrote chapter books too. This was a fun look into his childhood. I love biographies too!

The Color of Heaven– This is the conclusion of the manga trilogy. I liked it but I didn’t love it. It ends with Ehwa and her mom both getting married which was lovely. However it wasn’t so different from the first two books.

What the Moon Saw – I loved this book! It’s a hidden gem. It is kind of like Becoming Naomi Leon but a more teenage version. It really made you feel like you are with Clara Luna in a village in Mexico and it is a wonderful book. I recommend it.

Brown Girl Dreaming– Jacqueline Woodson is such a good writer! I will have to read more of her books. I love how she writes about her life and it’s so intimate and personal.

One goal for 2017

One of my goals for 2017 is to blog, which I am doing right now.

The reason I want to do that is because I want to be better about keeping up with my other goals. I love doing creative stuff and I want to hold myself to it by doing it more often. I have bursts of creativity but it really happens when I have free time. I can read tens of books and draw pictures, or even go outside =P I would love to squeeze in creative time even when I am working.

The other reason is that I secretly want to be a famous blogger through my hobbies. I want to get good at these hobbies and hope it appeals to people. I eventually want it to become a side job. I love teaching but I would love to follow my other dreams as well.

Steps I will take to reach this goal:

  1. Make something everyday (draw, write, cook)
  2. Find interesting blogs and follow them
  3. Visit a blog everyday and comment on it
  4. Blog at least twice a week
  5. Learn more about PR and other forms of social media

Overcoming roller coasters!

Today I overcame one of my fears! I went to Knott’s Berry Farm by myself. I have wanted to go for a while ever since I went with my then boyfriend Ray last spring. I felt bad that because I was scared or had bad experiences, I didn’t want to go on a ride with him. (It was Supreme Scream.) Since then, I pass by the park on my way to work and back every day. The tall drop tower seems to remind me that fear of heights and roller coasters is something I need to overcome.

Well, today I did it!!! I thought that going to a theme park by myself would be strange or boring, but it turned out fine. Weirdly, I’ve seen my former students there the last two times I went. That also brought up other emotions that are hard to explain. Maybe in the future I will explain it. Anyway, I rode the rides in this order:

  1. Silver Bullet
  2. Ghost Rider
  3. La Revolucion
  4. Pirate Ship
  5. Supreme Scream (twice!)
  6. Silver Bullet

The whole time I was thinking, I need to go on Supreme Scream, I need to. This is the ride that I came to overcome and redeem myself! I think I can do it now. But after I rode it I did feel kind of dizzy. Well, now that I have a season pass I can go as often as I want, and it’s pretty close! I just might become a theme park addict. Maybe someday I will be able to tackle the rides at Six Flags.

Here is to a year of overcoming your fears, wrestling with insecurities, and honoring yourself and what is important to you.

Top 10 best moments of 2017

  1. Meeting Ray for the first time
  2. Beach camping with Ray
  3. Going to Hsi Lai temple with Ray
  4. Celebrating Oliver and Isla’s birthdays
  5. Going to Las Vegas over Thanksgiving break
  6. Getting over my fever and sickness!
  7. Going to theme parks with Ray
  8. Sushi dates with Ray
  9. Cooking at home with Ray
  10. Mini golf and Round One with Ray

I’m thankful to have had so many wonderful moments in 2017 and I hope to have more! The best moments are yet to come ❤