Hi there! It’s been a while since one of these posts, hasn’t it? I’ve been tied up with school and work, and on my days off I mainly spend them hanging out with friends or visiting bookstores. It doesn’t help that lately I’ve been more into manga than actual novels so I also haven’t had much content to write on for this blog. Perhaps, I’ll make another manga review when one of them is finished (a lot of the ones I’m reading are ongoing). Anyway, I’ll try to briefly recap each month under this paragraph! I imagine that this post will be pretty long… but skim/skip around as you wish!
April was probably the least eventful and most stressful with wrapping up the end of the spring semester. Like I expressed in previous months’ Summing It Up posts, I did have some classes I was concerned about but, ultimately, I did well after factoring final exam grades and bonus points.
In May I didn’t have any academic worries since it was my “chill” month. However, I still didn’t have much free time as I was working a lot to save up for my rotation in this month in June. (Yes, unfortunately, students pay tuition/housing while they’re on rotation.)
June went by real quick. This year’s rotation was my IPPE (Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience) at an institution; I was placed at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Prior to going, everything about the experience was daunting to me because I had never left home-let alone drive for 10 hours to somewhere I was not familiar with and didn’t know anyone. Plus, aside from the didactic curriculum of my school, I had little exposure to hospital pharmacy. Needless to say, my time here has been inspiring and will probably help my future studies/career. (Although, I did do more observing than hands-on work, which is understandable with St. Jude being a place that is highly specialized, working with pediatrics and oncology.)
While on rotation, I learned a lot more about myself and my learning style than I ever did before. I was given an opportunity to do a presentation, and I was extremely nervous. Since taking speech class in undergrad, I think my stage fright has worsened drastically. Anyway, I was given great constructive feedback, and I hope to make some steps to improve by becoming more involved with my school in ways that will push me to be more verbal or present in front of an audience more. Talking in front of a group of strangers is almost an irrational fear because in theory there’s no reason to be afraid but it’s still a very real one for me. And I think it’s about time for me to address it before I continue on in my studies and commit to a profession that does require one to do some form of leadership and presentation.
Anyway, with that mini spiel about fear and self-awareness, I had a good time while I was away at home in Tennessee in June.
Mid-July I was in Winder, Georgia, which is about an hour away from Atlanta, for Camp Breathe Easy, a camp for kids that have asthma. I was there assisting with the medication side of things but I had a ton of fun and memorable moments while I was there. I love kids so it was wonderful (although my 11 to 12 year old girls were so boy crazy, lol). I even got to ride a horse and paddle a canoe for the first time. The latter was intense since it was about a 2 mile journey but it was a great workout. I also participated in other activities with the kids including capture the flag, which totally reminded me of The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, haha.
But that’s been my summer so far! A lot of traveling, which is cool since I don’t do it often!
– What I Read –
Thanks to my friend Amy, who is very much into anime and manga, I’ve been reading more manga (and even some comics!) again.
- ReLife (full manga series) – 4.5 Stars
- Orange (full manga series) – 4 Stars
- Emergency Contact – 3 Stars
- Queen of Shadows – 1 Star
- The Wicked King – 5 Stars
- QQ Sweeper (full manga series) – 4.5 Stars
– April/May/June/July Blog Posts –
- Summing It Up: March 2018 [Wrap Up/Favorites]
- Bookshelf Tour (May 2018) [Miscellaneous]
- Crooked Kingdom [Book Review] 4 Stars
– Favorites –
I think one of the best parts of traveling was trying the local cuisine. Asian food is my favorite (no surprise, haha) so I tried all the Asian restaurants while I was in Memphis. Some were better than others. Pictured were probably the best of my foodie adventures though! 😛
– Video Favorites –
Along with “I Need U,” “Save me,” and “Serendipity,” this has to be one of my all time favorite BTS MVs and songs. I just loved the colors, choreo, and story. Like all BTS videos it’s visually so pleasing! The fact that they didn’t use CGI is also incredible. (I also want to mention Tae’s “Singularity” which is also brilliant!)
Are you even surprised? I mean Ten is my favorite member in NCT (well, it’s a tie between him and Taeyong if I’m being totally honest) and he absolutely killed this. So beautiful and enchanting! And the ending is the best part, LOL! (This dance practice of his that was recently also uploaded is impressive, too.)
CRIES. I am so proud of them. This is why I love 5HINee so much! T_T
Right behind NCT, Pentagon is one of my favorite new generation boy groups. They are self producing meaning they produce their songs, write their lyrics, and even choreograph their routines. They are SO underrated and I’m still mad they didn’t win any awards with this song. I’m glad they’re slowly gaining recognition (especially through international fans) though.
Oh my gosh, I am SO obsessed with this group. The group isn’t official since they’re just a bunch of solo artists signed under the same label, Planetarium. But I really, really like the sound of this song. It’s like a mix of hip hop and R&B but still unique.
Is it weird that I like dance practices over music videos sometimes? I felt that way with this one. I thought “Dally” was a too sexy for me even though I enjoyed the actual song, but I LOVE this choreo. The perfect balance of sensual and fun imo. I think Hyorin’s new label is doing a great job with producing her concepts and songs; I like them way better than her solo work with Starship.
My chill song of the month! :’)
I ship them so hard!! This is such a golden collab (even though I know it’s not the actual song they made together, I still love that Hwasa sang this song with Loco).
For some reason this song and dance reminds me of old school K-pop, like stuff from 2010 (which was when I first got into the genre). Anyway, I love it!
Mina Myoung and May J Lee were my favorite from 1 Million Dance Studio, but I think Yoojung Lee is my favorite now. Her musical preferences (judging from the songs she choreographs to) is really similar to mine, and her style is so smooth. I also like that all her choreos seem very different and unique.
– What I’ve Been Watching –
Warning: since this is for a span of months, it’s going to be very long! Sorry!
Anime/AnimationsI’ve been slowly watching this one for months now. Initially, I was expecting it’d be similar to Kamisama Hajimemashita, one of my favorite shoujo anime of all time, but it wasn’t. The romance is set on the backburner and the cooking part of the show is more dominant, which is totally okay. I started to really enjoy it past episode 7 because more characters are introduced and the main storyline is becoming clearer. The OST is also so fitting and beautiful. (I’m definitely going to have to download the instrumental once it becomes available.) I was recommended this one by Amy. Although I like to watch anime and read manga, I wouldn’t consider myself to the extent of an otaku… but I can say some aspects of this show are relatable. I think I’d be classified with Kabakura’s kind of otaku if I was one though since he’s into girly manga like I am, haha. (Him particular bishoujo, while I like plain shoujo. XD) And the romance between Momose and Nifuji was way too cute; I’m glad their relationship worked out! I’ve started to buy the first few volumes of the manga and I can’t wait to catch up on the original series. The teenage Summer loved all things vampire because of Twilight (no shame!) so I wanted to see what this was about knowing it had vamps in it. The actual illustration and animation in this is subpar but the first episode ended with a burning cliffhanger which compelled me to search for and read the manga, which I ended up really liking a lot! The manga is still ongoing but I’m satisfied with where the story is heading. (Warning: the series is mature and dark!) I don’t think I’ll return to watching the anime because it isn’t visually satisfying, but you can bet I’ll continue the manga when more chapters are released. WHERE DO I EVEN BEGIN WITH THIS ONE? If you saw my Instagram story review of this, you know how much I loved it! Violet Evergarden is probably and will be the best anime I watch in 2018. It’s a short series (but I’m hoping for a second season since there’s more to the light novels, as I read translations of them online immediately after finishing the show) but I was crying nearly every episode. It’s an absolute emotional rollercoaster, like episode 8 and 9 completely wrecked me. (…I was sobbing at some point…) But I loved Violet and her journey to understand what love meant; it was wonderful to witness her gradual development as she met different people throughout the series. I’m also glad that the viewers learn of the side characters backgrounds as well. Unlike many short anime series, they’re more than just cameos. And the OST! So, so lovely! I bought the entire album through iTunes the day I completed the series. Anyway, I made everyone and their moms watch this because that’s how much I was moved by it.
Trailers for Violet Evergarden:
Trailer for Maquia:
Asian dramasWhat a huge disappointment! Initially, this show grabbed my attention because visually it was stunning (e.g. the cast and production) but it became so boring and lackluster real fast. I was pretty much done after the amnesia trope… but I still watched a few episodes and I ended up skipping to the very last episode and I was vastly letdown by the conclusion as well. It didn’t resolve anything! The romance was unsatisfying and frustrating. Ultimately, I wish that I enjoyed this one way more. It had so much potential! The only good thing that came out of this was disocvering the male lead, Song Wei Long. He’s definitely on my radar now. /heart eyes/ My favorite part of this show was probably the first 20 minutes, which is saying a lot. It’s a Freaky Friday kind of story but there are tons of unexplained loopholes. I also find the male lead to look insanely young (and he is pretty young), and for that reason I had a hard time buying into his acting when he was playing romantic scenes. To my dismay, I also found the story to not really have much of a plot aside from the body swapping. But I did love the little modern day snippets at the end of each episode where the couple bickered over small things. Those scenes were too adorable! Thanks to several people suggesting that I had to watch this, I gave Siege in Fog a try (my first period drama set in the early 1900s) and loved it so, so much! The story isn’t without flaws but I enjoyed every minute of this show. There’s a lot of heartbreak and angst, but I thought it was well done. The sexual tension and chemistry between the two main leads were perfect; it’s hard to believe that they’re not together in real life (Sun Yi is already married with a baby!). The cinematography and costume designs were also so incredibly beautiful. And the cast themselves were gorgeous and fantastic actors. I’m definitely anticipating Elvis Han and Sun Yi’s next work! They played their roles so convincingly in this one. (I cried a lot at the end.)
Siege in Fog Trailer:
Moonshine and Valentine – 4/10 [Skip Completed]I typically never like the older woman, younger man relationships, but I was completely invested in this one and I think it was because it was presented so uniquely. Of course, this would probably never happen in real life since you don’t “adopt” strangers on the side of the road no matter how cute they are… yet there was some realism about the romance. I feel like the heroine’s suffer and loneliness to be very real even if her way of coping wasn’t. I also love the character development in this one. For both characters, their growth were gradual and natural. I am currently LOVING this so much. I have a great feeling that this may be one of my new K-drama favorites for me. I only have a few episodes left since it has already finished airing but it’s safe to say I’m going to rate this at least 7 stars, which is good for me. There’s more than just a swoonworthy romance, there’s mystery and intrigue and so much more. Gah, I definitely recommend if you’re searching for a light, worthwhile K-drama!
What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim Trailer:
As you can tell I was trying to squeeze this in before July ended… but I wasn’t quite successful since it was such a rush! Anyway, I hope you guys have been keeping well! Thank you for reading (or skimming; I’m not judging), as always. And happy birthday, Harry! 🙂