10 Things That Are Bringing Me Joy Right Now!

Crimson wrote about ten things that bring them joy, and their post got me thinking about the things that bring me joy.

1. Coffee. I usually start my day with coffee. My go-to coffee order is one cream, one sugar. I like to order pumpkin drinks in the fall and iced coffee in the summer. When I’m at home, I use an AeroPress and add frothed milk on top.

2. Danmei. There is a lot of anticipation happening now in the danmei community. We are expecting Immortality (hopefully) and a few other BL dramas. Heaven Official’s Blessing Season 2 will be released (hopefully), and I’m still clinging to the hope that The Scum Villain’s Self-Saving System Season 2 will be released. I’ve preordered Guardian Volume 1, which will be released later this year (hopefully), and there are other danmei series being published, like The Husky and His White Cat Shizun.

3. Manhwa. There’s been a rise in anime and webtoons where the villain/villainess is the main character and there are a lot of revenge stories. The stories I like are either A) the main character reads a book/plays an otome game, dies, wakes up in the book/game’s villain’s body, and acts differently in order to avoid a terrible fate, B) the MC is murdered by a loved one, goes back to the past, and hatches a revenge plan, or C) the MC is betrayed and hatches a revenge plan. My favourite manhwa at the moment is probably Remarried Empress. What I like about the female lead in Remarried Empress is that I don’t think she’s intentionally getting revenge. She’s just improving her situation because she’s been wronged, but it’s so satisfying.

4. Animal Crossing. One of my 2023 goals is to start a YouTube channel. I want to give a tour of my island. My island is my space where I have total freedom and control. It’s almost near completion, so I want to show it before I restart. I hate that you can’t have more than one island per Switch. I’m not willing to buy another Switch just to start a new island (some avid players have) so I want to make a video of my island so I can remember it. I might dabble in making AMVs as well, but one thing at a time. 😉 One basic thing that recently occurred to me is that we can do so many things, and I intend to take advantage of that. I learned how to play Go yesterday.

5. Samsung watch. My boyfriend gifted me a Samsung watch for Christmas, and I really like it because it records a lot of data. As someone who has volunteered and worked as a research assistant on different teams for several years, you could say that I love data. I’m most interested in my sleep data, but it’s also nice for other reasons like snoozing my alarm and notifying me when I’m getting a phone call.

6. YETI water bottle. I was gifted a water bottle for Christmas, and it has motivated me to drink more water. I know that sounds weird, but it’s true. It’s like when people buy a new keyboard to motivate them to write more. I have the mint YETI bottle.

7. Keychron keyboard. Speaking of keyboards, I love my keyboard. My boyfriend gifted me a Keychron keyboard when I got a new PC last year, and two of my friends donated their spare keycaps. I customized my keyboard with three sets of keycaps. I also added a Bulbasaur keycap because it fit with my theme. Cosmetics do matter. My keyboard is wired and supports Bluetooth, which I’ve taken full advantage of.

8. Music. The music I like best is very niche. Most of it is not on Spotify, but I pay for it for convenience. I like to listen to music throughout the day. My current favourite song:

9. Subbers and translators. I always feel like a part of my mind is elsewhere because I breathe, sleep, and eat fiction. I love novels/web novels, manga/manhwa/webtoons, Asian dramas, anime/donghua, games/visual novels, and more. Anyway, subbers and translators have my love.

10. Handwritten cards and letters. I’m always happy to receive something handwritten because it feels special and intimate. Somebody thought of me and took time out of their day to write me a card. I’ve kept all of the cards and letters I’ve received.

Thanks for reading!

2022 Year-End Review

Happy New Year!

Another year, another year-end review post (You can read my 2020 post here and my 2021 post here). I didn’t blog, cosplay, or draw much/at all, but I had a busy year and I’d like to think that I’ve accomplished some things.

I paid off my student loans.

I wrote a post about it and how I did it. You can read the post here. I also set a rainy day fund for the first time after I paid off my student loans, and I’ve reached it. I have a new year’s resolution of saving a good portion of my monthly income, so we’ll see how it goes. Inflation is wild, so expenses are higher while the quality of life is more or less the same.

I got a new job.

It’s a full-time job with benefits, and I work three days at the office and two days from home. I hope I can continue to keep this hybrid model, as this was a COVID thing. For those of you who don’t know, I have a BA in Psychology and a Bachelor of Social Work. You can probably guess that I work in social services. It’s stressful indeed, but rewarding at the same time. The job keeps me busy and I like my coworkers.

I got my full driver’s license.

In British Columbia, we have to take the knowledge test, the Class 7 driving test, and the Class 5 driving test. The Class 5, full test is taken at least two years after you pass the Class 7 test. It has been a long and rough journey to get my full driver’s license. I actually got Covid during the time I was supposed to take my Class 5 test, so that had to be canceled and then rescheduled. I was so happy when I got my full driver’s license.

Celebrating my graduation (two years late!)

I graduated with my BSW at the start of the pandemic in 2020. There was no closure. Everything ended so abruptly that I 100% believe it impacted me negatively. I didn’t bother attending my virtual graduation.

The university held an in-person graduation ceremony for my class in late 2022. I didn’t attend that one either. I didn’t celebrate my graduation at all. In December 2022, I thought about it some more and changed my mind. I thought that I should celebrate my graduation, so I bought a charm for myself. I wear it on my bracelet every day. It’s the Celebration Cake Dangle Charm by Pandora, and it has the word “Congrats” on it. There’s a strawberry on the cake, and I just really like how the charm looks. I like the idea of collecting charms that represent the milestones in your life.

I’d like to thank my boyfriend, family, friends, and WordPress family for your love and support. Thanks for reading!

Obsession

I recently had a conversation about obsessions, and how I would even like to have an obsession. Hear me out.

I think life is more fun and enjoyable when you are obsessed with something. I find that you are most creative because you are driven by your sheer determination. You are passionate about something! (Or someone.) I was obsessed with The Phantom of the Opera when I was in high school. I didn’t like Christine, so I read every single Erik x Meg fanfic that existed. I even wrote my own fanfiction, which I never published. That was the only period of my life where I wrote fanfiction.

I have been trying to get into fanfiction writing for a while now lately, but I lack motivation. I don’t have something I’m obsessed with. (Is obsession the right word?)

I recently came across a Tweet that said that the fastest way to improve your art is by being obsessed with something, and I wholeheartedly agree with that. I haven’t drawn in a couple of years, and that’s something I used to do. Cosplay is another hobby that I haven’t done in a long time.

I used to be really into celebrities, but I’m too jaded for that now. I’ve been disappointed by too many scandals to count! 😂

Anyway, I think I just need some motivation. Writing this post is a step, so at least there’s that.

Authenticity? Part 2

This post is a continuation of an earlier post of mine from November 2020. I became inspired to write this post after finishing a route in a game and being too shy to write about it publicly.

That made me think a bit. What we post online, when attached to our real name and face, will be filtered most of the time, if not all the time. Would I have written about the game if I was using an anonymous account? This filter that I/we engage in is pretty interesting. I have friends who know me in real life, online friends, and there’s an overall feeling of discomfort around disclosing too much information. So yes, I’m completely aware of the filter that I put up on social media. And this isn’t just for potentially embarrassing or unhinged topics — the effort and time people put into editing their photos and making them look nice also counts. Sure, they might be posting for themselves, but part of it might be that they want their content to look presentable for others to see. But if it is posted just for yourself, would all of that still matter?

You’ve probably heard of the old phrase “Think before you speak” and I totally agree with this statement. But what would people look like if they didn’t have a filter at all? Judged and/or outcasted would be my guess.

I might try an experiment to see whether my content would differ if I used an anonymous account, specifically around photography. But I might be too lazy to go through with it. I guess only time will tell.

A couple of places I visited~

I went to Habit Coffee and Fisherman’s Wharf in Victoria, B.C. in October.

I wasn’t a big coffee drinker before, but now I love it. My boyfriend gifted me an AeroPress a long time ago, and now I can’t go back to drinking instant coffee. Still, I don’t think I have the patience to grind coffee beans by hand. I’m not at that level just yet.

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Dahlias are one of my favourite flowers. I saw these at Richmond Country Farms in October.

I watched a video a long time ago about dahlia-growing contests in Japan. I think that it’s cool to have one thing that you’re super committed to. I don’t think I have that – I constantly switch back and forth between hobbies.

Have you noticed that I’ve been writing a little bit more in my posts? I got inspired by Minty’s long posts and writing style. I don’t think I can ever write one as long as hers, but this is a step.

Tea Time

I wore my new dress and hair piece for the first time. ^_^ I went to Pâtisserie Für Elise again.

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This last photo is from my friend’s Halloween tea party. I brought tea that I had bought specifically for tea parties, and it was so lovely to drink it with friends for the first time. It tasted great with milk.

I want to build my collection of teapots, cups, towers, and more so I can host my own tea parties one day. I just love the vibe, and I feel like this is where I belong. ^_^

Birthday High Tea

I went to high tea to celebrate my birthday this year. It’s kind of a tradition now, as I did it last year as well. This year, I went to Pâtisserie Für Elise.

I also went to the Vancouver Aquarium. I made a reel to document my experience there:

A blur

It’s surreal to think that a lot of us spent a year at home. Online work, online school, online meetups, online everything. I’m trying to remember how my life was at the time but it’s all a blur. I don’t think life was that bad for me for because I had a lot of sources of entertainment, but I’m much happier now that I can see people in person and explore the city.

Before in quarantine days:

  • I got into letter writing and stamps
  • I got into various crafts
  • I watched a ton of shows
  • I went hard with online shopping, to escape the everyday
  • Small joys: Anything out of the ordinary brought me joy. During this time I came to appreciate a lot of things.

Now after three vaccine shots and with restrictions lifted:

  • I’ve met up with a lot of my friends and had opportunities to dress up again. One of the first things I did was get a hair cut.
  • I’ve visited numerous cafes and restaurants, something I had missed
  • Fun dates with boyfriend
  • I got to see the cherry blossoms this year. There are none in my neighbourhood, so I explored other parts of the province to see them.
  • New experiences: I got a shellac manicure with my coworker yesterday. After hearing that I had never gotten a manicure before, she encouraged me to try it out.

The importance of taking pictures

Without pictures, I feel that a lot of the things I’ve done would have been lost on me. “Put away the phone; enjoy the moment without the phone” is the opposite of how I think… I think it diminishes photography, ignores that people may have poor memory, and ignores that people may want something to look back on. Personally, I get a lot of satisfaction from capturing a good photograph.

New PC

I built a PC for the first time. I couldn’t have done this by myself, as I’m not tech savvy enough to build a PC from scratch. But I did pick the colour of my case (white, to match my Nintendo Switch OLED) and I helped screw in some of the screws. Hahaha.

I also got a new keyboard, mouse, monitor, and desk mat. The new monitor was unexpected but my family coincidentally had an unopened extra monitor in storage, so that was nice. I have to thank my boyfriend for gifting me the desk mat, mouse, and keyboard. I also have to thank two of my friends for donating their spare keycaps to me, which is how I was able to customize it.

Anyways, I’m absolutely in love with my PC. My favourite part about the setup is the keyboard because it has keycaps from three different keyboards. It was so much fun customizing it, and I think I did a good job with it. The keyboard is from Keychron and it can light up.

My other favourite part is my case because it has a clear cover. I put two of my stands in there (WangXian and BingQiu).

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Edit on November 14, 2022: I bought a Bulbasaur keycap a little while ago. My keyboard feels more complete.