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VIOLENCE AGAINST ASIANS IS A VIRUS

VIOLENCE AGAINST ASIANS IS A VIRUS

As you can see, I’m not here to beg for mercy or sympathy. I’m here to keep speaking out on the suffering of our Asian community.

The amount of Asian hate crimes that have drastically skyrocketed lately is absolutely revolting, despicable, and disgusting to our Asian community that makes me sick to my stomach. I have every right and the freedom of speech to be angry and frustrated with our generation that we live in. Our Asian community did not flee to America for a better life just to experience the rise of discrimination and violence towards our innocent Asian victims that have done nothing to deserve the tormenting pain. I will never understand why people have such evil and wicked intentions nowadays. It’s hard to forgive our enemies when the majority is still not allowing peace and unity as a whole. We’re truly exhausted, so is enough ever enough?! What gives anyone the right to continuously treat Asians differently no matter where they come from?! The majority will see Asians as mostly “Chinese” when it’s obvious that Asia is the largest continent in the world with so many diverse regions and languages. Once again, Asians are not just from one background only. But sadly, many Americans are still close-minded and lack education to see what’s really out there. Asians should never be targeted or defined in any way over a virus. The same ones that are against wearing masks are usually the same ones that like to make racist remarks on the Asian community. America, make it make sense. America is not doing any better for the sake of risking and hurting our community.

This is not the matter of time to justify which POC matters more or what not. All POC should matter equally. Period. The excuses that “Asians haven’t spoke out or done anything for other POC” is just another way to keep having us divided. Life is not a competition or a comparison about who suffers the most, and we shouldn’t need to pretend that there’s no good people out there left that actually cares for equality. What needs to be blamed is the White supremacy that has been affecting our entire communities for centuries. I’ve noticed that our Asian community is very easily defined whenever there’s a few bad ones. Having a few bad ones from the Asian community does not entirely define the rest of us. Do you expect everyone to act the same way once you meet them?! Absolutely not. If you encounter a few bad customers, does that mean that all of your customers are gonna be the same way?! Absolutely not. The Asian community is begging to be free, to be safe, to be PROTECTED. Asians have the right to go out safely without having to worry about their lives being in danger for looking Asian. I repeat that Asians should not have to walk in fear for their lives. They should be coming home safe and sound with their families, instead of being attacked or having their lives taken away so selfishly.

The dreams and the lives of many Asian Americans have been shattered. Some families will not be able to see their loved ones live successfully. They’ve had dreams, hopes, wishes, and a purpose just for it to be taken away. The younger Asian generation doesn’t deserve to grow up without their family members and friends. We’re not going to sit here any longer to watch our Asian brothers and sisters get murdered endlessly by a demonic person with no heart, mind, or soul in this world.

As an Asian American I shall say;

  • I have hopes and dreams.
  • I am proud to be Asian.
  • I am not defined by our stereotypes.
  • I am proud of my skin color.
  • I am open-minded and strong.
  • I will not be ridiculed or mocked.
  • I have zero tolerance for racism.
  • I have the right to live my life freely.
  • I deserve to feel safe.

Everyday, I constantly worry about my loved ones becoming a victim at any moment. It’s ridiculous to make people from cultural backgrounds feel ASHAMED of their own skin color by racists throwing racial slurs. Racism towards Asian Americans have always been normalized and often viewed as a laughing stock. We’ve come to the conclusion that we’re not backing down without a fight against anti-Asian hate crimes and racism. People with weak minds will always find an excuse to keep everyone divided from each other instead of standing up for each and every one of our brothers and sisters. Black, brown, yellow, red, you name it. We all need to come together and have the right mindset.

Wrong mindset vs Right mindset

Wrong mindset

  1. “I don’t care for Asian lives if it’s not our problem.”
  2. “Why do I need to stick up for Asians when they’ve also treated our people wrong?”
  3. “It’s the Asian’s fault that they brought corona in this country!”
  4. “All Asians are the same.”
  5. “Asians only like White people.”
  6. “If Asians experience so much racism, then why are they one of the richest group in the nation?”
  7. “Asians eat the weirdest things so we should stay away from them.”
  8. “I don’t feel bad for Asians, they deserve it.”
  9. “That’s not racist, it’s just a joke.”
  10. “But it’s the truth about Asians…”

Right mindset

  1. “Asians are also human like everyone else.”
  2. “Asians are Americans too.”
  3. “Asians are not a virus.”
  4. “I will not stand silent for the Asian community.”
  5. “Anti-Asian racism is not a joke.”
  6. “Asian lives are important just as much as BIPOC.”
  7. “It’s time to educate ourselves and others on the history of anti-Asian sentiment.”
  8. “The Asian community needs to be protected.”
  9. “Violence is the real virus.”
  10. “Stereotypes do not define the race of a human being, especially Asians.”

We need to be brave and stand up for one another. There’s no sides to choose from when everyone should be reciprocated with love and support. Our Asian community is already hurting and suffering to the point where we’ve had enough. I’m extremely disgusted with the rise of hate crimes happening to Asian Americans everyday across the world that are trying to live a normal life. Hate is a virus. Violence is a virus. Racism is a virus.

Amplifying our voices and taking action together can help make a huge difference. Together we can help save the lives of many.

Links to help

Resources

https://www.asianamericandayofaction.com

https://linktr.ee/aapiprogressiveaction

https://msha.ke/aapihistory/

https://anti-asianviolenceresources.carrd.co

https://stopasianhate.carrd.co

https://www.gofundme.com/c/act/stop-aapi-hate

Cheers to 21

Cheers to 21

So I’ve recently turned 21 the other day! What a blessing to see another year. I celebrated it by having a birthday brunch on Sunday and played lots of games at Dave and Busters and my new friend’s apartment. I had my first margarita drink and flavored soju hehe. My birthday was on a Monday, but it was still a blast with the best people!

I’m a proud Aquarius and it’s the rarest zodiac sign with the least born in February that makes me feel like I’m one of a kind. Turning 21 in the pandemic makes me question about life and how my 20s are gonna be. I honestly feel like it was just yesterday that I’ve graduated from middle school rather than high school, but high school definitely flies by quick no matter how long you can’t wait to graduate already.

I’m relieved that I’ve graduated 2 years ahead of the pandemic and got to live some of my last moments of high school. Although high school had lots of its ups and downs, I’ve managed to make far better memories after graduation and maintained better relationships.

Life could change so quickly in a blink of an eye. I’ve learned so much in my 20 years of life going on to 21. Sometimes I wish I could go back and tell my teenage self that- life is what you make it to be and you’re the only one that’s in control of your own life.

I know how bad it would suck to turn 21 in the pandemic for people that miss partying and throwing big events. I’ve never been much of a drinker or a party animal anyways, but I’m perfectly fine not following social norms that society normally does. I’ve always liked being in my own bubble, and would rather celebrate a birthday night with a few great friends and loved ones.

Sure it’s a huge deal to many, because you’re finally at that legal age where you get to drink and be more independent to make your own decisions in life (unless your parents are super strict and live under them). Honestly, turning 21 doesn’t make that much of a difference to me besides being an official adult and having more responsibilities and opportunities.

In my opinion, your early 20s can be confusing. You’ve got people that are still in school, getting married, having kids, living their dream job, or getting lost in life. I believe that everyone has a different time frame in life and that age is just a number. It doesn’t matter where or when you get there as long as you end up content and successful with the life you’ve always dreamed of.

Once you’ve reached a certain age especially at 21, you’re expected to act and do things a certain way or have everything figured out by now. This time next year, some of us will graduate from college with a degree title and go on with our lives.

You feel like you’re behind in life somehow and start to compare yourself to others that already have it all. But then I remember that you still have a whole life ahead of you with so much potential to learn, grow, and mature. I would hate to feel rushed and think I’m running out of time.

I don’t want to be like anyone else but myself, because I’m still developing from my mistakes and failures that’ll help me become wiser. I’m also blessed to have big dreams with God by my side. We may be stuck in a pandemic, but the pandemic is just another obstacle to distract us from reaching our dreams when life has no limitations.

Being 21 makes me feel so old even though it’s just another year. You’re still so young and barely out of your teens, but also not considered a child anymore. We’re all slowly growing old, but I understand that it’s a natural part of life. It reminds me that life is way too short and that we should make the most of it no matter what age you turn. I’m not exactly sure how I should feel about this age, because I look almost nothing like my age and I’m a very petite person that’s babyfaced. Looking younger than your age has some advantages, but I gotta keep making sure that I bring my ID everywhere because people might not believe I’m 21 now (haha lol).

As a child growing up, I’ve always hated my birthday and cried almost every year. I usually get emotional and sensitive on my birthday for some reason. I’ve never looked forward to celebrating my birthday and wanted it to be over with. In elementary, I remember when my parents would bring cupcakes and an actual birthday cake to school. I’ve always hated the attention and being the center of the spotlight whenever I got sang Happy Birthday to, but I’ve never opened up to my parents about it. There was this one time in Kindergarten when my teacher and the whole class kept telling me to take the first bite, but I refused to because I was too shy. Even to this day, I’m still not a big fan of my birthday and would rather celebrate other people’s birthday. But I do understand that birthdays can be a very special day, because you’ve got to live to see another year on the day you were born.

Even though I’ve always hated my birthday, I’ve learned to embrace and appreciate my birthday more each year. I’ve realized that it’s a waste of time to constantly feel down, because there are people in this world that would do anything to spend their birthday with their deceased loved ones again. So I’m very grateful and blessed that God has given me a chance to live and discover who I really am whenever I feel lost.

“Every sixty seconds you spend angry, upset, or mad, is a full minute of happiness you’ll never get back.”

Unknown

I don’t feel 21 but I OFFICIALLY am!

I’m still a kid at heart though.

What Quarantine Has Taught Me At Home

What Quarantine Has Taught Me At Home

All I can say is, 2020 has been one hell of a year during these crazy times. We all miss enjoying- living a normal life before switching to virtual and having to follow the stay-at-home orders. COVID-19 has been on the rise for a year now, but kudos to those that survived and made it this far. May those that didn’t make it to 2021 rest in paradise and 2021 to be the new chapter of change, prosperity, and peace for everyone.

Never take anyone or anything for granted: Quarantine made me realize to not keep living life full of regrets. There are a lot of things that I wish I could go back and change. COVID-19 made me miss out on so many opportunities that could’ve happened, but instead- I had to wait for things to go downhill. So many loved ones are losing their lives everyday. Families and friends don’t get a chance to visit their sick relatives or even get to say goodbye to them. Please hold the dearest ones closest to you, and remind them how much they mean to you. Let them know how much you love them before it’s too late. Don’t miss out on chances, take advantage of them!

Discover yourself: Thanks to quarantine, I developed new hobbies that included writing. Because of quarantine, I’ve gotten deep into blogging and it has changed my life in the most positive way where I can finally express myself by using this platform. Hobbies aren’t just meant for something that you enjoy doing- it’s where you can reveal the inner you to find your hidden talents. Whatever it is, your passions will eventually end up finding you.

Reflect on experiences: Think of a time or an event that you learned something from. I thought to myself, what can I do to change? What am I doing wrong? Why am I always letting others down including myself? I often overthink situations, but I’m usually reminded that you’ll either allow your mistakes to make you grow bitter or better at this time of moment you’re in.

Not everyone stays in your life: It’s a lonely time being in quarantine for the majority of people that miss being surrounded by friends and having fun. You might lose contact with people that’ll walk out of your life for the better and see who’s really there, because not everyone is meant to go on your next journey in life for a reason. I’m honored to be an introvert since I don’t have to worry too much about who stays in my life when I’m already happy being alone. But I’m also blessed to have met many amazing people after losing a few ones. To all the extroverts out there, it’s okay to enjoy your own company too sometimes. Plus, quality over quantity is more valuable for our mental health and well-being.

Be more appreciative and thankful: If anything, quarantine has made me appreciate life the most. I sincerely regret for any of the times that I was unhappy or ungrateful when deep down, I have no idea how lucky I am. I may not be where I want to be at in life right now, but I’m still alive and well. I have food, shelter, and clothes provided for me. I cannot imagine the pain and suffering that people go through in other parts of the world who don’t always have everything that we have during the pandemic. We’re all going through such a tough time, so it’s best to keep showing gratitude and support for one another.

Expand your comfort zone: Being in quarantine doesn’t mean that you should stay stuck in your bubble the whole time. It means that you should go out of your way to try something new- whether you’re working out at home and getting some fresh air, or starting a self-care routine. I’ve always lacked motivation and wanted to improve my weaknesses over my strengths. I’ve tried to teach myself how to cook recipes, start a night routine, get involved in activities and communicate with people as long as I’m still practicing social distancing and protecting everyone’s health around me.

Enjoy the little moments: The little things in life are what makes life beautiful. The stars in the sky, watching the moon light up, seeing the sunset, listening to music, and video chatting with a loved one that’s miles away are all so meaningful to me. One day, we’re not always going to wake up the next day to enjoy those little things. I don’t need a lot of materialistic things in my life, because I feel that the little things I enjoy the most are already enough for me.

Patience is key: Getting laid off, constantly rejected from jobs, and ending up not being the right fit for that one job has been emotionally draining. The struggle while being in the pandemic is absolutely atrocious. You’re persistently told that you’re not enough or doing enough, and how pressured you feel to find a job right away. I believe that things that don’t always work out, God is working behind the scenes for you because something even greater is on its way. We just have to be patient and trust him! God is not done- he knows your struggles, your desires, and your dreams. God does not want you to give up though, because he also promises you for a better future and he will never let you down.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11

Trust the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your plans.

Proverbs 3:5-6

We always question, when will the pandemic ever end? Honestly- the world may never know, but I know that it will be soon if we keep having faith and trust in our Lord. We’re all tired, depressed, or whatever you name it. Things may seem to not get any better, but the change is all on you. Be part of the change and help make this world a better place. Show kindness and practice good deeds, because life does not wait for anyone. Don’t forget to keep social distancing, have good hygiene, and wear a mask to help slow and stop the spread of the virus. Make sure to think twice and be selfless before risking others!

The “America” We Live In

The “America” We Live In

You know, America has always been believed to be the greatest country ever. We’re considered to be the most powerful independent nation as a whole. No other country beats our socioeconomics, cultural diversity, and leadership right? But yet, America lacks those things more than you ever think today. How is America really the “best” country in the world when we, as a minority are still struggling to gain our own rights and equality compared to non-POC?! This isn’t just a political issue, this is something that America needs to wake up to. We’re often told if we don’t like this country, then we should leave. Trust me, this isn’t your country either if it weren’t for the Indigenous peoples and Black slaves that had their land taken away first.

Let’s talk about the countless Black lives that have been lost and how the police were using rubber bullets, tear gas, and actual guns to target peaceful protestors that haven’t even took one step for violence during the Black Lives Matter movement. All of a sudden- Trump supporters and other White supremacists want to break into the US Capitol and start violence with the police. Apparently, Blue Lives Matter doesn’t matter to them anymore. What goes around comes back around. You could see that the police were only using pepper spray and batons as a defense. What happened to shooting people at a protest and making them go blind? This right here is an example of White privilege at its finest.

The year has only just begun when Trump finally gets out of office. The pro-Trumps don’t seem too happy with the Congress between Biden’s and Trump’s election. This violence is an act of terrorism and shouldn’t be categorized as protestors. Notice how some of the police officers have already gotten killed at the US Capitol, while not even one single police officer has ever gotten killed when activists were fighting over police brutality in the streets after the devastating incident of George Floyd. Even though some riots and loots occurred, there were also some peaceful protests. Compared to the US Capitol attack and the BLM movement- POC that tried to fight for justice and peace would either get hurt or killed unlike non-POC.

Many immigrants flew to the United States to live a better life, land jobs, and have more opportunities to live a dream they’ve always wanted for themselves and for their family. Sometimes they have to flee away from their country to escape conflicts. As much living conditions that are afforded and provided, America is not always what they’ve dreamed of to be. We’re still dealing with racial injustices, inequality, and lack of support in our economic system. If America is so educated, then why do we still have problems with racism and Americans having trouble locating the continent? Meanwhile- no one is ever taught how to treat racism or the reason for cultural differences in this country. Americans are whitewashed to believe that American is a race when we are supposed to be made up of different backgrounds ethnically.

The school system teaches their kids that Christopher Columbus was the first European sailor to discover America, but they never talk about how us humans have actually evolved from Africans that made the human race today. They never want to admit that the White Europeans stole the lands of the Indigenous peoples that set foot in America first with the Africans, and how they relied on them to help built this country for centuries. History has never mentioned that the Native Americans descended from East Asia via Beringia through DNA- making them the ‘First Americans’ next to Africans, or how Asian immigrants have also faced racial prejudice in the US. False teachings claim that Jesus Christ, our Lord savior was a ‘White figure’ when he actually had darker skin as a Jew from the Middle East. America likes to whitewash history from anything to make it seem like they rule the world. Many Non-POC claim to love God, but hate his creation.

According to the Bible:

His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude.

Daniel 10:6

If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.

1 John 4:20

The US government could honestly care less about its people. The rich will continue to receive better healthcare while the poor keeps struggling to survive in poverty. We’ve failed to act quick to help protect this country in the pandemic- leaving nurses and other healthcare workers overworked, underpaid, and exhausted. America still has the most number of deaths and cases in the world as of today. We cannot blame another country, especially China for our worst behavior and actions. Let’s not forget how millions of Americans got laid off and unemployed, and how difficult it is to seek another job. America only cares about the economy and not the lives of others, which is why businesses have reopened with lifted restrictions. The vaccine is out- not knowing how effective it can be for some people that have an allergic reaction, or for the new strain and mutation of Covid that has been recently found in Europe.

The UK, Canada, Australia all have a better healthcare and educational system. Canada tops the list of being the most multicultural and educated country. Not only do they have one of the best healthcare, they’re also widely open and accepting to everyone across the world- they believe that immigrants help their society grow as a whole culturally, economically, and politically. Their college may not be for free, but it’s affordable at a lower cost unlike many places here in the US. Most American students struggle to find jobs after getting a degree while being in debt- struggling to pay bills and make a living. Do you call this the American dream?

In America, it seems that non-POC will always have an advantage with more opportunities over POC. The majority of Hollywood shows, films, and movies that you see are mainly White actors with the most lead roles. What happened to shows that had only Black characters or shows that were racially diverse? Although POC may break into the entertainment industry sometimes, there’s still not enough recognition and representation of POC that they deserve because of cultural appropriation. If America is really under one nation, then everyone should at least be given a chance to succeed regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation.

This is the America we live in today folks, don’t forget that.

Sincerely,

Me that wants to seek change.

Hawaii Trip 2020

Hawaii Trip 2020

Happy New Years everyone! To end 2020, I want to share my most recent and latest trip of Hawaii back in February during peak season. It’s crazy to see how fast time has flew by, especially during these hard times in the middle of the pandemic, but man do I miss traveling! Thankfully, I was lucky enough to leave for a vacation right before the pandemic struck. I know that all of ya’ll miss going out to do so many fun activities and having a great time. But don’t you worry though, sit tight and hang in there! We’ll definitely have the good times back and have other destinations checked off in no time.

Due to the bad weather, we had to change some of our flight stops to Denver and San Francisco. After checking in at the airport and finally getting seated in the plane, the plane was running an hour late because it needed more fuel. Almost at every stop- our flight kept getting delayed or running late somehow, but luckily we made it to Hawaii just in time for our arrival.

Hawaii is such a beautiful place to visit and it has to be everyone’s dream vacation since I’ve always been dying to go for a while, and I’m really glad to have taken this as an opportunity to finally explore! I definitely recommend everyone to visit the places I’ve went if you ever get the chance to go one day. Also, there’s nothing better than a hotel view to wake up to the next morning.

2045 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu HI 96815

My first trip to Hawaii was one of the most exciting experiences in my life. I went with my aunt to celebrate our birthday month and as a graduation gift for the first time. We went to Honolulu, Hawaii of Oahu island. As much as I was excited for the vacation, I couldn’t stand getting sick right on the day I left to Hawaii. It was hard for me to enjoy the food without blowing my nose or sneezing every 5 minutes! No I did not have COVID haha. Even though I was sick, that didn’t stop me from having a blast in Hawaii. We’ve only stayed in Hawaii for 4 nights and 5 days at the Luana Waikiki Hotel. Our first stop was dinner at Tommy Bahama restaurant.

Day 1: Tommy Bahama restaurant

After arrival to the hotel, we had to rest and then get ready before heading to the restaurant. We didn’t need a taxi or a driver to take us to places, because we could just walk anywhere downtown. We’ve walked all the way to the restaurant that probably took us more than 10 minutes, but it wasn’t too bad. The restaurant was right upstairs of a shopping store that connected through the staircase.

The restaurant looked pretty neat and a nice spot to hangout with your friends and family. I’ve ordered a few items on the menu that are appealing to me. Since I love anything that’s sashimi and meat, I’ve ordered the ahi poke dip appetizer and the wagyu burger entree with a side of fries. The appetizer was pretty good, but it honestly wasn’t my favorite. However, the wagyu burger was definitely the real deal! It was unlike any other burger I’ve had, because wagyu is a special marbled beef that’s rare to find where I live. I’ve also loved how the buns came out.

Wagyu Burger
Ahi Poke Dip

Day 2: Diamond Head Crater & Sunset Cruise

The view of where we hiked at was amazingly breathtaking. You could see the beauty of the nature in Hawaii with so many trees surrounded. It felt like I was on top of the world when I saw the view of people’s houses and buildings up top. We followed the tourist guide until the end of the hike and almost got lost, but we eventually caught up with everyone else.

A fun fact about this hiking area is that, it used to be an active volcano. How scary and awesomely cool right?! It was definitely a long walk all the way up to the top, but it was worth it. We were warned to watch our steps since the steps can be very rough and steep, and there were injuries that happened on the spot before. As I was hiking my way up, I accidentally tripped and scraped my knee on the ground pretty badly. I was distracted by how gorgeous the view was. I know I should’ve been more careful and cautious at first, but thank God I was okay and kept on walking (I was still slightly struggling and limping). The tourist guide then offered me a bandaid and I was so thankful for that.

Honolulu, HI 96815
Honolulu, HI 96815

The Sunset Cruise was without a doubt, an amazing experience. Before going on the boat, everyone had to walk barefooted so that there’s no dirt and sand on the ride. The best part was when you can see the whole view of Waikiki on the shoreline. If you’re the type of person to just want to hangout and relax while listening to music, then this vacation spot is perfect for you! There were music and drinks where you can enjoy the company of people around you. I couldn’t have any alcohol because I still had another year left of becoming legal enough to drink, but they made me a drink with no alcohol and I loved it!

307 Lewers St #208, Honolulu, HI 96815

Day 3: Polynesian Cultural Center

Another amazing experience! I promise you won’t regret it if you ever come here. We had to take a bus to get to the Polynesian Center, and it took about almost an hour to get there. The Polynesian Center lasted for literally a whole day and it was so worth it since there were so much things to see and do. There were so many cool shows with lots of talented performers that blew me away. I was deeply impressed and entertained with some of the volunteers and artists. I’ve also learned how to use sticks, make a fish out of banana leaves, and how to hula dance. I’ve enjoyed walking around and exploring what the culture has to offer. A big shoutout to the Filipino tourist guide! We also had lunch before starting a long, big day.

55-370 Kamehameha Hwy, Laie, HI 96762
55-370 Kamehameha Hwy, Laie, HI 96762

This was such a perfect balanced dish between healthy, sweet, and savory. If you’re vegetarian or maybe vegan, then this dish might just be for you and it’s great! I was glad to have my stomach filled up first before going to do all that fun and big stuff ahead of us, then having dinner afterwards. For dinner, I’ve had beef stew and chicken and tried this Hawaiian dish called poi. It’s not the best dish I’ve tried in Hawaii, but it was not bad after all! I still enjoyed my meal.

Tamarind Zucchini Noodles

Day 4: 1831 Ala Moana Blvd

We didn’t really have much plans, but walk around the shopping center and go to the ABC stores. I’ve tried boba tea samples, and grabbed some souvenirs and t-shirts for memories to take home. Hawaii is really expensive for those that want to live there. You have to pay at least 13 cents or so for a bag to put in your groceries, and the housing cost is unbelievably high. Hawaii also has a high Japanese population, so there’s plenty of Japanese restaurants and places. We ended up stopping at a Japanese restaurant and got ramen.

Spicy Tonkutso Ramen

Having matcha ice cream for dessert after a long meal was probably the best part of the day. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the ramen but the matcha ice cream was the goat here. It was so rich and creamy! I just wanted to keep having more and more scoops of matcha ice cream.

Matcha Ice Cream

Day 5: Last day- free time

On our last day, we’ve roamed around downtown to kill some time and went for a quick swim at the beach. I’ve never wanted to leave Hawaii and wished we’ve stayed even longer, but I’m very grateful to have experienced this trip so far. Next time I come back, I’ma definitely stay much longer and visit more places! Hawaii has such a great culture with great people. If you ever ask me what my favorite part of the whole trip was, I would say the whole trip.

Waikiki Beach

Can’t forget about the Loco Moco dish that I’ve always wanted to try, so we stopped for lunch first before it was time for our flight to head back home. This Hawaiian dish was super delicious with a dash of hot sauce. The beef, the gravy, and the sunny side up eggs with rice on the bottom- French kiss! It’s one of the best things that I also recommend everyone else to try while you’re in Hawaii.

Loco Moco

No matter how depressing it was to leave Hawaii, I’m still happy that I’ve been given this opportunity to experience something like this in a lifetime. Every new year will always have those moments that you can cherish forever through the good and bad times. There will always be the good times each year no matter how hard life hits you, so let’s continue to appreciate the good times while they’re around. Remember to be blessed that you’ve gotten to see another year, because not everyone will always make it to see another year. Happy 2021 and many more years to come!

~Mahalo~

Travel Adventures

Travel Adventures

Let’s take a moment and time out of your busy day to go on an adventure in your lifetime. As much as I like being a homebody, I love to travel to see the world and where it takes me. 

Why do we love travelling? It’s a rush of excitement we feel inside once you step in the airport feeling ready and relieved to go on a flight to a new destination, or even when you’re going on a little road trip.

One of the best things about traveling is, tasting new foods that you probably have been dying to try. Each country has such spectacular and exotic cuisines. Looking at food vloggers always make me crave everything they try! If you ask me what my dream job is, I’d travel and become a food critic. It may sound cliche, but you’ll never know what you like/dislike without trying something new that could be a surprise. 

Scratch out those international fast food chains and try real authentic foods across the globe. Sure it may sound strange if you’re eating something that you’re not familiar with, but you have to accept and respect that it’s part of their culture. One of the craziest delicacies I’ve tried before while I was in Cambodia were, tarantulas and bugs. In my reference, they really do taste much better than how it looks or sounds no matter how odd it seems. 

Some foreigners are clueless about the history of a country. Before leaving to a new destination, learn before you go! Learn what to do and what not to do. 

As we travel, we experience all types of people where ever we go. You’ll learn more about people, their language, and lifestyle than how you were normally raised. Not everyone can afford to travel, but there’s always a way to visit another country. Each destination can remind you to be blessed and appreciative of the life you’re given without taking it for granted, and to just enjoy the moment.

“Travel. Your money will return, your time won’t.”

Unknown

I’m in love with big cities and nature, but also have a soft spot for beaches with a drink in my hand. Going on boat rides is always the best time to see breathtaking views.

Angkor Watt, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Everyone’s dream vacation may be going on a cruise or seeing the sunset in Cancun, but I definitely recommend everyone to go to Cambodia! Cambodia itself doesn’t get much recognition that it needs. Cambodia has so many hidden gems and treasures that everyone should explore. Take your chance, Cambodia might just surprise you.

Cambodia may be one of the poorest nation in Southeast Asia, but it’s amazing to see how rapidly the country is developing. It’s also one of the fastest growing economy in Southeast Asia! I was amazed to see how fun and loving Cambodia really is. Cambodia is pretty much influenced by its neighbors; Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. They all share similar foods with a taste of their own culture and tradition. 

Cambodia has such a natural beauty and a dreadful past. If you ever go to Cambodia, don’t miss out on the Angkor Watt. It is the largest religious monument in the world with thousands of visitors every year. You could possibly get to ride horses or elephants, and take lots of pictures. I remember climbing on top of the horse with a fake sword on my hand and had many pictures taken, I’d definitely do it again!

Pub Street, Siem Reap

But don’t just go to Cambodia to visit the Angkor Watt. I highly recommend visiting their Cultural Village, Pub Street, mountains, and other historical temples/buildings. There are also many nice beaches and resorts! 

Pub Street is a very local spot for tourists to go to if you’re a big fan of pubs, clubs, and bars. There’s so much to do and so many delicious foods to try. It definitely should be on your must-do list for a vacation. 

There’s still so many places in the world that I haven’t been to yet. If I could go anywhere in the world, it would definitely be Europe. I’d love to be anywhere in Europe especially Greece, Belgium, and the Netherlands. I would love to visit other exotic places and visit every continent out there. I also wouldn’t mind traveling as a living or vlogger one day. 

Traveling has so many opportunistic advantages for gaining knowledge of the world. It’s nice to feel like you’re away from reality for a little while, and forget all of your problems. Every time I leave back home, I look at all of the beautiful memories and pictures I’ve made that I can cherish forever hoping to go back soon one day.

If I could ever give a saying it would be,

“Travel, it’s good for the soul.”

Let’s always remember to live life to its fullest and seek adventures.

K-pop Impressions

K-pop Impressions

These last few generations have made a drastic change in the K-pop world and industry. For the new ones, K-pop (also known as Korean pop) is a form of many genres of music originating in South Korea that’s influenced by many parts of the world. K-pop became so popular internationally that some of the biggest K-pop stars collaborated with other artists in America like Selena Gomez, Halsey, Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga, Jason Derulo, and etc. From the addicting tunes and melodies to some of the most iconic choreography, K-pop has truly sparked the eyes of the audience.

How I first discovered K-pop

It all started in 3rd Grade when my older brother showed me a music video from a K-pop male group, BigBang. I automatically fell in love with the music video and started listening to them on a daily basis. I was always so obsessed with the group members, especially Taeyang. Then I came across the Wonder Girls and other K-pop groups.

As soon as I discovered more K-pop groups, I’ve became attached and addicted to the music. It was always fun learning dances from K-pop videos and trying to sing the lyrics in Korean. I used to think, how is K-pop so good when we can’t even understand what they’re saying? Some of us may not understand or speak Korean, but we can already feel the meaning behind K-pop.

After discovering K-pop, I’ve watched Star King where ordinary people showed their special talents. I’ve also watched Star Dance Battle that showed K-pop groups having a dance showcase with each other, and whoever got the most points would win. After School was my favorite performance to watch on the show, and they always won!

Although there’s still amazing groups out there, the 2nd generation of K-pop will always hold a place in my heart because I personally think that’s where the best memories are at.

Why K-pop is so popular today

The truth about K-pop is that, they have rigorous training and have to put all their time and effort into it for years to become professional. K-pop trainees hardly have enough time to do anything else outside, like spend time with their family and friends. They often lose sleep and starve themselves day and night.

K-pop trainees also get criticized if they make a wrong move that doesn’t meet up the industry’s expectations. Looks almost play a big role in the K-pop world other than talent. You have to look good and do as they please in order to get more recognition.

Another reason why K-pop is so popular today is because, the music is very diverse and sometimes have their own versions in different languages like Japanese and English. The music video theme is usually filled with creative productions that tells a story to the audience. K-pop tends to focus heavily on promoting overseas.

Fanwars in K-pop

There’s often a comparison between K-pop groups that I dislike about K-pop. Fans would fight about why their favorite band/group is more superior, and attack others that have a different point of view. Sometimes a K-pop group is compared to a nonK-pop group when both equally have their own successes.

For instance, Little Mix and Blackpink are often compared by Blinks and Mixers. Little Mix is a British girl group from the UK, and they are extremely talented as well as Blackpink. So the two shouldn’t even be competed against each other. I personally prefer Little Mix with no hate towards Blackpink, but both are still such iconic girl groups that have their own style.

What I think about K-pop:

Since K-pop has increased worldwide, I slowly started to lose interest and grew out of it. I understand that K-pop has dramatically changed over the past years, but I feel that K-pop focuses more on views instead of the quality of music now. K-pop fans nowadays have gotten extreme to the point where it’s toxic. I still love K-pop deep down, but I don’t consider myself a “stan” as much as before. K-pop will always have its pros and cons just like any music out there.

I, too honestly do miss the old generation of K-pop and like listening to the more underrated K-pop songs, but I still enjoy today’s K-pop! I’m thrilled that many people from different backgrounds are opening up to K-pop more and their culture. Sometimes your favorite band/group can have their contract ended and have another career for different reasons. It’s sad to see your favorite members leave from time to time, but at least you’ll always be willing to support them no matter what.

My favorite K-pop groups (2nd Generation):

  • Sistar
  • 2NE1
  • BigBang
  • Wonder Girls
  • After School
  • EXID
  • SHINee
  • B2ST (BEAST)

My current favorite K-pop groups:

Even though I only have 3 favorite K-pop groups in this generation, I will put the names of my bias on each list. This is only my perception if some of the most popular groups today aren’t listed. I prefer to listen to a slightly less popular group, but these are my few ultimate favorite groups that I mainly listen to the most.

  • Twice- Sana
  • Itzy- Yuna
  • Red Velvet- Irene

My favorite K-pop idol:

Hands down my favorite K-pop idol is BoA. She has such amazing dance skills and vocals. I honestly think she’s one of the best visuals of K-pop. BoA is like a legend and has been recognized as one of the most influential singers ever. She is considered the “top artist” in East Asia for a reason. Her talent, personality, and visuals are what inspire me. The best music video from BoA is ‘Only One,’ my all time favorite.

“You have to become the ‘first of yourself’ instead of trying to become the second of anyone.”

BoA

Saranghae chingu ya!

10 Self-Care Activities For Confidence

10 Self-Care Activities For Confidence

From my previous post talking about self-love and ways to improve your confidence, I will give everyone ideas on what things you should try and do on this list! Even to this day, I still struggle to stay confident at times without feeling awkward. I know that some of you guys out there have felt the same way or dealt with lack of confidence, so now I have to practice what I preach in order for all of us to be in this together.

Let’s remind each other that our flaws shape us who we are today that make you, you and you shouldn’t feel bad about it. You may not feel loved, but you have no idea how much you’re actually loved and cared for.

What exactly is self-care, self-love, and self-confidence?

Self-care is taking good care of oneself physically and mentally for their own health. Self-care is about choosing to be happy and accept the things that can’t be changed, rather the things that can be changed. Self-love is loving yourself, accepting yourself as an individual, and being confident in who you are by knowing your worth. Sometimes people can mistakenly interpret self-love as cocky, conceited, selfish, or arrogant when self-love is about caring for oneself humbly. Self-confidence is being confident and capable to do one’s abilities. Self-confidence is to believe in oneself without doubting themselves. Self-confident people know that they’re never going to be perfect in everything they do, but they try their best to succeed anyway by not focusing on everyone’s opinions and needs.

1. Develop new hobbies

Try something new that you’ve always wanted to do, and you might be surprised by your hidden talent. Do artistic skills like painting, drawing, poetry, calligraphy, etc. Play new sports or one of your favorite sports. Buy some crafts, and knit or sew into something creative. Learn how to play an instrument. Go read a book, and gain that knowledge. Take dance classes or learn how to dance at home. Capture moments with your photography skills. Listen to music and sing your heart out. Any hobbies will help you grow confident, and have a better mental health. Growing deep into your hobbies helps you live fully in the present too. And you never know, one of your hobbies could end up as your passion one day! Remember it’s totally fine if you’re not the best at your hobbies, but always find something to do that’ll make you feel comfortable and happy at peace.

2. Start a skincare routine

Buying products that won’t always work for your face can be expensive when there are other tricks you can use from your kitchen. Everyone has different skin types: normal, dry, oily, sensitive, or both either way. Use DIY ingredients and natural products at home. Ex.) you can use regular rice flour and green tea with honey (optional), and add any amount. Make sure to wash your face with the best cleanser first, then put on moisturizer after rinsing your face mask. Doing skincare products at home can actually be beneficial for you. It’ll make you feel more cleansed, fresh, and healthier about your skin once you use it more often.

3. Deactivate all social media every now and then

Social media could have a major effect on your mental health if you don’t use it as a positive influence. Social media is a dangerous place full of strangers you’ve never met. Social media has made this generation feel that having money, and materialistic things will make your life more meaningful when life is so much more than that. Sometimes we worry too much about what other people think of us, and start to reflect negatively on ourselves. Being on social media can be a distraction, especially if you’re always so caught up of what everyone else is doing instead of enjoying your own free time. It’s common to seek acceptance and feel turned down in the end. Believe it or not, deactivating all of your social media often is worth it. It can be hard to delete your social media instead when you want to keep in contact with some of your family and friends online, but it’s best to be away from everyone else for quite a while to keep your mental health stable. Once you deactivate or delete your social media, you’ll realize how different your life might’ve turned out for the better.

4. Learn how to cook

Don’t know how to cook? Watch tutorials daily. Cook your favorite recipes and food. Try making new foods from scratch that satisfy you. Make something that you’ve always been craving. Learning how to cook at home will also save you tons of time and money than going out to eat. I guarantee you that your cooking skills will help you build yourself. Nothing is better than a home-cooked meal to share with yourself.

5. Get out of your comfort zone and do things that scare you the most

Travel by yourself. Be adventurous but take caution. Start a conversation with a stranger, you never know what they go through behind closed doors. A simple small talk or a smile could make someone’s day. Get involved in new activities and put yourself out there. Network, meet new people that have the same aspirations and goals as you. Don’t be afraid to take big steps that’ll help you learn and grow throughout the process.

6. Get rid of bad habits

It’s hard to get rid of any bad habits that keep you from being a healthier individual. We all have a bad habit that we just couldn’t help doing because we’re “bored” or it makes us feel “good” when in reality, it’s actually very unhealthy. Too much of anything that’s not good for your personal growth or health is toxic that needs to be cut out right away. Force yourself to break out of any bad habits you have that will keep you motivated in your everyday life.

7. Give compliments to yourself and remain humble

Compliment what you like about yourself. Remind yourself that you’re strong, and that other people’s opinions are none of your business. Tell yourself that you may not be perfect, but you are beautiful inside and out no matter what. Tell yourself that you’re just as worth it. Empower yourself and believe that you can do anything you put your mind to. Embrace the little flaws about you that make you different than everyone else, because being different is unique.

8. Try on new outfits and dress out nice

Wear new outfits with your favorite shoes and accessories. Wear your favorite jeans. Go out and try a new fashion trend. You don’t always have to go on a shopping spree for a new wardrobe. Pick out random clothes that you can find in your closet, and throw it into an outfit. Your new style will make you feel more elegant and confident. It’s important to dress and impress yourself first than to dress and impress others.

9. Do kind acts for yourself and enjoy your own company

Help yourself out and go treat yourself with coffee at a cafe. Spend time with yourself, solitude is always peaceful and keeps your mind at ease. Practice good hygiene. Write positive little notes and reminders for yourself everyday. Buy yourself roses and treats. Learn about yourself on your journey. Find what you like and dislike. You don’t want to lose yourself on someone else. Life’s not always about finding someone that will want you in their life or love you forever.

10. Stay active and exercise more

Go for a jog at the park. Workout at the gym weekly, your body image will improve. Clean the house and organize your room. Stretch yourself for 30 min. Do some yoga to relax your mind and body, this will help you be stress-free. Keeping your body running and moving at all times will help you stay productive. Whenever you get things done at your own pace, you’ll be relieved.

No matter how tired you feel at the end, trust the process and know it’s worth it.

~Congrats, you did it and you made it!~

PRACTICING SELF-LOVE

PRACTICING SELF-LOVE

Nowadays we struggle to fit in, fall into peer pressure, get trapped in other people’s opinions, and often lose ourselves before finding ourselves again. This world can be filled with negativity and criticism, but we have to remind ourselves that other’s opinions doesn’t define who you really are as a person. Nobody knows the real you deep down but yourself. Always allow yourself to free your mind, and let go of anything toxic that holds you back from shining your true authentic self. Happiness doesn’t come from others but within you, because you can’t always depend on others for your own happiness!

Growing up, I’ve always been so insecure and constantly compared myself to others and felt like I wasn’t good enough. I’ve became more socially anxious in situations. I was always so unsure of myself, because I’ve felt like I didn’t belong in this world. I’ve struggled of maintaining confidence and opening up to others, and there were times where I had to fake my confidence to make myself seem strong. I felt like my guard was being put down at times, because I kept being judged for every little mistake I would make. I’ve missed out on so many opportunities due to my shyness and lack of self-esteem. The things that I’ve struggled till this day though, has made me into a much stronger person and the lessons that were taught. It allowed me to improve into my well-being self each and every single day. To all the lovelies out there that are feeling lost deep down, you’re never alone. You are so loved, powerful, and important.

Destroying your old self and starting a fresh new you isn’t always going to be easy. We all have our own ways to grow on our own, and it definitely takes some time. There’s no need to rush while you’re still young, but you can always start something new to become a better version of yourself. Here are the top ten things you can do to boost up your self-confidence:

  1. Develop new hobbies
  2. Start a skin care routine
  3. Deactivate all social media every now and then
  4. Learn how to cook
  5. Get out of your comfort zone and do things that scare you the most
  6. Get rid of bad habits
  7. Give compliments to yourself and remain humble
  8. Try on new outfits and dress out nice
  9. Do kind acts for yourself and enjoy your own company
  10. Stay active and exercise more

We may often compare ourselves to other people and wonder why we think that they are better than us, but there are some things you might want to ask yourself first. Do they inspire you? Do you look up to them? Have they changed your life? What positive outcomes do they bring to you? If we often get jealous or compare ourselves to others, then they have no aspect to play a role in our lives no matter who they are. In order to grow and love ourselves even more, you have to surround yourselves with people that are positive and bring light into your life.

Being around people that make you feel like being “different” is a weakness, have no place in your life. We’re often told to fit in with everyone else rather than to stand out, or get told to do certain things to please others and gain their respect. If we’re constantly doing things that don’t satisfy us for others instead of for our own benefit, then we’ll never be happy.

The most common reason why it can be hard to love ourselves is because, we’re surrounded by negative people all the time who always make you feel sorry and question yourself. Instead, we need to be surrounded by the ones that are honest and motivational. You’re probably wondering, how can we find those people? Well once you cut off anything or anyone that constantly drains your energy, you’ll start to see a bigger picture and a brighter view.

Self-love is so important when it comes to friendships and other relationships. Even if you’re single and haven’t been in a real relationship yet, you have to love yourself first before you can love someone else. It’s okay to put yourself and priorities first. You also don’t need a lot of friends to learn how to love yourself, and it’s sad to see so many people fall into this trap. You don’t need to depend on others for your worth, I always remind myself to know your worth and where you stand. Always remind yourself that you deserve more than just being an option, and that you can be your own priority without needing someone along the way.

There are moments where I still feel like I’m not good enough, but deep down I know that I’m enough. Everyone makes mistakes, and being “perfect” is impossible. Remember that it’s okay to make mistakes as long as you learn from it. You may feel like you don’t matter in this world, but you’re put on this Earth for a purpose. You MATTER and you are ENOUGH.

Thank you for the ones that took their time to read this, I hope you all have a wonderful and prosperous life!

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