Birthday!

Guess who had a birthday yesterday! This girl did! *points to self* I celebrated with the family and I couldn’t ask for anything more…well we could have gone to Six Flags, but since it was supposed to rain, we decided to do dinner instead. Of course since we did that, it didn’t rain a drop on my birthday >_> I’m sure if we went to Six Flags instead, it would have rained all day because life and nature like to mock people like that.

I’ve slowly but surely been making progress in Japanese and Korean. Think I can make JLPT N2 by December? (Apparently we can only take the test in December in America and I doubt I’ll be in Japan by July haha) I think I can! I know I can! *pumps self up* I’ve been using the Shin Kanzen Master series and I plan to “revise” with the Sou-Matome Series. I figure they cover mostly the same grammar points and maybe I’ll learn something new from the second series.

I’ve also been really into Korean again. I stopped studying Korean to focus more on Japanese since that’s what I majored in, but my love for Korean has been rekindled. So I bought Talk To Me In Korean’s (TTMIK) Real Life Conversations book (and got 20% off cause I was one of the first 100 customers) and I love it! The conversations are thorough (for introductions, it’s not the basic “Hi, how are you? My name is John” or that 자기 소개 where you have to say like a paragraph introducing yourself in front of the class). The dialogues actually seem like situations that you could come across and I’ve laughed a few times cause the TTMIK staff knows how to keep things interesting…or maybe it’s just easy to make me laugh haha. I listen to the conversation once to check how much I understand, then i dictate it. By dictating (that’s a word right? O.o) it, I mean I write the dialogues line by line (I think a lot of people dictate by writing while listening, but I do better listening, then writing. Since I don’t write a lot, writing by hand is extra slow which is why i study the way I do.) I check my script against the actual transcript, make corrections, and look up words I don’t know. Then I check the English translation to make sure I’m understanding correctly, rewrite the entire correct dialogue (they’re usually about 1 minute and 30 seconds so it’s not too bad), and listen to the dialogue again while reading the correct script to re-enforce what I learned. There’s an exercise following with about 4-7 English sentences and you are asked to translate them to Korean. Then you move on to the next dialogue! I love the TTMIK team so much and you can tell they want their learners to understand and they have good quality products (this is bad English, don’t follow my example guys) and this is not a sponsored post, haha. I think I’m done bragging about the TTMIK team.

Oh! I’ve also been studying to get my permit, but now I might not take the permit test. Grammy said their (meaning grammy and papa) insurance cost will go up, and right now no one has the money to spare for that so…..gonna leave that alone for now. But I guess it’s still nice to know the rules of the road…although after reading the book, most of it just seems like common sense. I guess after so long riding in the car you just pick stuff up when it comes down to it.

Aaaaannnnnddd I’m done with this post! ^_^ Enjoy the rest of your March (in case I don’t make another post this month 😅)!!!!

Yay!!!

Soooo…I’ve just finished my first Japanese light novel! I’ve been obsessed with sports anime lately, so I read a light novel regarding one of my new favorite shows: Kuroko no Basuke! I LOVE the characters there! Oh my goodness. And I watched Prince of Tennis, so I’m used to all the sports moves being blown out of proportion and amplified with characters glowing and flying into outer space and stuff so the unrealistic-ness of it doesn’t phase me too much! I like how the anime puts a lot of focus on improving in basketball, but the light novel that I read (Kuroko no Basuke-Replace) goes into a backstory of their lives. If it were to be animated, they would be the filler episodes that no one really wants to see. I like fillers (when they’re done right) so I liked reading the novel. And let me say I learned A LOT of words! I was going to settle for reading ~20 pages/day but I got so caught up and motivated to keep going that I wanted to read more. I bought the novel as an e-book from BookWalker. At first I wanted to buy the original light novel, then I thought about the shipping costs for the series. I’m still jobless, so anyway I can save money, that’s what I’m doing. SO, I bought the ebook, downloaded the app on my phone (I couldn’t screenshot the pages from my computer >_>) took screenshots on my phone, uploaded them to Google drive, gathered them in a document using Pages (my student Microsoft account expired and I can’t find our original CD T_T), then printed out all the pages from the document. The ebook was 329 pages on my phone, but I could get 4 pages on each sheet. So I technically used 83 sheets of paper (which isn’t bad coming out of a 500 sheet pack). I may or may not do this again to finish the series. There are 5/6 volumes (don’t remember) and I want to finish them all. For now, having them printed out on paper is best for drilling the Kanji/words into my head, but maybe after reading so many volumes, I won’t need to go to a dictionary to look up every other word, so I won’t feel the need to print the pages out anymore. For now, although the process is repetitive and boring, it works for me. And I was extremely excited to get through my first book! ^______^ I think part of the reason I was able to get through the book quickly was because I was completely focusing on Japanese. I always try to balance out my Japanese and Korean, so switching back and forth was probably more tiring than I realized. For now I really want to up my Japanese, then maybe Korean can come after that.

Rough draft of how I went through the book:

November 16: Ordered Kuroko no Basuke-Replace

November 17: Started reading it.

November 30: 80 pages in. Decided to start reading 20 pages/day

December 3: Started reading 1 chapter/day (total of 6 chapters but chapter 1 was ridiculously long)

December 9: Finished the novel

In the midst of this I finished 3 anime series: Diamond no Ace, Yowamushi Pedal, and Future Diary. I’ve also been keeping up with Haikyuu! (the anime and manga)

It’s official: I need a life @_@

My Goodness!

It’s been awhile again huh? >< But! I’m not complaining! I applied for a job and I’m in the midst of applying for another. If I get either one, I get to use either my Japanese or Korean skills! I haven’t been doing nothing! And because these are jobs that require a higher level of the languages that I’m studying (JLPT N2 and really good business Korean. They didn’t measure Korean using TOPIK so I’m not sure about that one), I’m forced to study more so I can be up to par with everyone applying! which leads me to: this has been a productive week so far! I took a mock TOPIK I test and got 183/200! I haven’t forgotten my Korean! Watching those dramas really helped! xD I was going to take practice tests all week to test my week spots in my languages, but on Wednesday, I just decided to jump right in to studying! I won’t disclose my schedule, but I’ll upload it when I’m finished with everything. No matter how I try to put stuff on my blog here to hold myself accountable, it doesn’t work. SO, this time, I’m going to go through with the schedule (hopefully) and THEN upload so everyone can see what I did (and how crazy I am ^^;)! It’s only been 2 days and I’ll be going for about 8 weeks so….I have quite a ways to go. I won’t say I’m doing well until 2 weeks in. but I don’t know if it’s because of the jobs I applied for or the way I changed my study habits or what, but I really enjoyed the last 2 days and my brain doesn’t hurt (yet) from overstudying, cause that can be just as bad as not studying enough @_@

I leave you all with this! My embarrassing recording of me reading an entry from 연세 읽기 3! Hopefully I’ll get a lot of these up (but I just looked through the book and a lot of the passages are LONG so I doubt it @_@). I had to record this in parts cause the passage was pretty long and I kept messing up. So you guys can probably hear where I stopped and started and paused and clipped and everything >_< But take it one step at a time right? Right.

Yonsei Reading 1

A Good End for a Great Beginning

It seems that everyone is doing self reflections at this time. Should I join the bandwagon?

I started 2014 off in a club in Fukuoka, Japan with good friends and a good time. No complaints there, except my clothes smelling like cigarette smoke for about a week, despite washing. So much happened in Japan from January to August, so I may start another category for that later. In short, I enjoyed myself, and if I could go back in time to relive it, I would do that. Came back to America, went to school, got new roommates, but I didn’t really go out much. I guess I’m kind of an introvert, so I never really went out in the past. In Japan, I went out enough to last a lifetime which was even surprising to me. But I went right back into my introverted turtle shell upon my return. I’ve struggled with thinking about what I want to do in the future and started preparations for graduation. Finished this semester with good grades: 4 A’s and 1 B, and I plan to do well in my last semester as well (of course). This is the part where I state New Year’s Resolutions? I read somewhere (where exactly escapes my mind at the moment) that it is not a good idea to make resolutions because they are easily broken (which is true); it’s better to set goals like you would for anything else you want to accomplish. So that’s what I’m going to do. And writing it out here will help when I want to look back and see what kind of goals I set for 2015. Well…it’ll help assuming I can keep up with this blog; I’ve never been good at continuously writing a blog. Anyway, on with the show!!!

Goals for 2015:

  • GRADUATE!!!
  • Korean: Reach TOPIK Level 4 by the end of the year. Looking at my current level, it would obviously take time, so it would probably be best to take the test in October.
  • Japanese: Reach JLPT Level 2 by the end of the year. I will take this test December 2015. The testing systems in Korea and Japan are different. For Korea, there are six levels and the higher you go, the more advanced you are. In Japan, there are five levels, and as you go down a level, the more advanced you are.
  • Live the life I (with a capital I) want to live. Others can give me advice, but in the end, what I want to do will be decided by me.
  • Return to Japan OR travel to Korea. If I make it to one, I assume I’ll make it to the other, because it’s much cheaper going from Kor->Japn/Japn->Kor than it is to go from Amer->Kor/Japn.
  • Learn how to keep in touch with friends. I am so bad at keeping up with people because I stay in my own little world, but I want to keep the amazing people I’ve met in my life. I’m working on it.

Hmm…I thought I wanted to do more in 2015, but I guess not. I’ll probably think of more as I go along with the year. I should also work on going with the flow. I like to be prepared for any and everything, but I know plans may not always go as planned, and I need to work on how to cope with that and not freaking out (it’s pretty bad for me). For now though, I’ll stick to my plans. Welp, this is a fairly new blog (started in November of this year ><), but this is the last post of 2014. I hope everyone else enjoys bringing in the New Year with family/friends/by yourself. How ever you choose to celebrate.

Happy New Year!!!!!! ^_^

Thank You!

Ok, is it sad that I’m so happy I have four followers! xD Thank you all!!!

Today, I didn’t do anything, but my grandma had lunch with the pastor of our church. We’ve been members since the church started, so naturally we’re all pretty close. Oh yeah, I decided not to go to church last Sunday (if you read my previous post). I was falling asleep by the time my grandparents were waking up, so there was no way I could make it. @_@ My grandma understood though; she knew I would fall asleep. Anyway, Grammy went to lunch with the pastor, and when she came back, she returned with a gift from our pastor! She gave me a Panera Bread gift card, some stuff from Mary Kay, and a book full of inspirational passages based off of scriptures. It’s amazing that even though I haven’t been to church in awhile (it’s gotten a lot harder to go since I’ve been in college and haven’t been home), she still seems to remember what kind of stuff I like. I’ve seen girls my age that like heavy and bold makeup, but that’s just not me. I got sample lip glosses and hand cream (that IS me). Oh and I got two samples of perfume! (I LOVE PERFUME!! One day I want to have a huge collection of perfume bottles, whether they’re full or empty. The bottles are usually pretty too.) Basically, I’m really thankful she still thinks about me. I want to get her a nice gift as well. She usually likes writing in journals, so I’ll probably get a really nice one for her to write in.

Gift from Pastor

Isn’t the bag pretty too?! My favorite color is purple ^_^

I trimmed (with actual hair shears) my split ends yesterday. I had been holding off on it because a lot of people said you really shouldn’t use regular scissors to cut your hair, and I just didn’t want to buy the shears. But I found 3 pairs for ~$11, and the pair I used cut my hair really well. I guess I got rid of all the split ends, haha. I’m still new to taking care of my hair >.< I also deep conditioned. I can tell it’s a LOT more moisturized than before _-_ I just have to keep it up!

I also got new boots! Merry Christmas to me! x3 I bought them for myself cause I was searching for the style of boots with a high heel AND a platform so they would be comfortable. I finally found a pair for $29.40!!! I’ll upload a picture later, because they’re not near me now.

I’m just ranting, so if you’ve made it this far in the post, I applaud you! I’m starting a new “project” for the New Year. In terms of what I said I wanted to do in this post, I think I’ll start the year off focusing on drawing and keeping up with Korean. I have a Japanese class so I don’t have to put too much emphasis on it. In January (New Year’s Resolution that I can hopefully keep up with), I want to do a challenge where I draw something everyday. It doesn’t have to be a complete picture, but at least get in five minutes of drawing time. Since I’ll be bored in class, it shouldn’t be too hard because I’ll most likely doodle on my notes. But that’s the goal-start off small, work my way up. As for Korean…I really don’t have a plan. @_@ I’ll just have to go with the flow on that. After I get in the habit of consistently drawing and studying my languages, then I’ll make time to dance (I’ll work on a plan later).

I can’t believe there is only one more week of December left! This year went by so quickly! I’m sure next year will fly by too-especially since I’ll be preparing for graduation and thinking about what I want to do with my life. I’m still so lost 😦

Things I Want To Do:

I’m officially done with this semester, then one more semester until graduation. There are a lot of things that I want to improve, and I feel I should make a list so I can keep up with what I want to do. If it’s established now, I won’t have to sort my stuff out and suddenly make the decision to do it in January when everyone is making New Year’s resolutions. So, things I want to improve:

  • TIME MANAGEMENT!
  • Korean (TOPIK Level 4)
  • Japanese (JLPT 2)
  • Drawing-learning to be patient when it comes to art @_@
  • Computer science
  • Managing my finances/learning about investments

And on a smaller note/not much of a focus:

  • Dancing
  • Singing
  • Cooking

Ok, so maybe it’s not as much as it could be (?), but most of those things can be time consuming. Especially computer science and drawing. At least with languages, you can learn a little at a time and not feel bad; for the types of pictures that I want to draw (extremely detailed) they will take me time because I have to re-learn how to draw; I haven’t done it in so long. Last night, I made a list of all of the resources, strong and weak points, and how to improve my skills in Korean and Japanese. I also have an idea for a picture that could go along with what I want to write. I can make a schedule later on because I have the basics written down already. I’ll try my best to actually follow the schedule. @_@

School is a Pain

I just can’t seem to get into this Korean self-study thing, but I guess one of the reasons is the timing I chose to start. I’m done with most of my tests for this semester, but now I have loads of projects and essays that I have to complete which takes more time than studying for a test would. :/ If you work and/or study while self-studying Korean, how do you motivate yourself to do it as often as you do?

Over the 3 years I’ve learned Korean, in addition to the textbook I used for class, I was going along with the Talk To Me in Korean lessons as well, so I finished most of the curriculum I think. While I may understand grammar points, my vocabulary level is really low. I don’t even know how many words I actually remember. Sometimes they say you should know XXX words at XX level, but I don’t know how many words I actually know. The textbook we’ve been using in class (from Integrated Korean Beginning up to the Intermediate 2 book) has been good, but that series was all I really used for studying Korean so I guess I’m bored with it now, haha. I ordered the Yonsei Reading Book 3 from TwoChois a while ago, so I’m expecting that in the mail soon (probably after 2 weeks). Judging from other reviews of the book, it seems like it’s a little above my level-just enough to give me a challenge without completely discouraging me from learning Korean. I also ordered 2 만화 and Korean Family Foods (the Japanese version) for when I get tired of doing heavy reading. As I wait for those books, I think I’ll hold off on doing extra work. I should be focused on trying to finish out the semester.