In less than a week, it's going to be my birthday. Yeah, I'm stepping into the big 2 0. In commemoration, I will review my 19 before 20 list. That's right, at the beginning of this blog, I made my very own list -- which was originally inspired by Elsie. Although it wasn't exactly the day of my birthday back then, I made one anyway in a resolving spirit. I'm quite happy with how much I've achieved. So here it is in review.
1. Graduate from Studienkolleg
Since September last year until June this year, I've been attending Studienkolleg in Halle, Germany. Briefly put, Studienkolleg is like college in the USA...I think. Foreign students, whose German is not yet sufficient, are obliged to attend it. It is also mandatory for German students who finished their school in other countries. Let's just say it's an adjustment period for foreign students and the like. Anyway, I had tons of fun while it lasted. I learnt a lot and made a lot of friends - I even had a trip to Rome with some of these girls. That was, indeed, a valuable experience and, for what it's worth, I'm glad I went through it.
2. Go Home to Indonesia + 10. Spend Quality Time with Friends and Family
These don't really count as achievements but they are two of my favourites. I'm so glad I went back. I got to see my best friends, my best high school friends, my beloved sister and my whole family. Oh, I love, love, love having spent Eidul Fitri with my family this year! ♥ I got to do my first cosplay at the Anime Festival Asia Indonesia with my best friends. I definitely spent some quality time with my stepmom, dad, sister and brother. Discovering a brand new antique restaurant, visiting a vintage ice cream parlour and touring an old war submarine. Oh! I even got to spend some quality time with Firu's family. That was the best extended summer. I love them all. I might not go home next year so this means a lot to me.
3. Try Many Different Styles of Art + 4. Make (a) Portfolio(s) For School
How am I supposed to explain these two? So yeah, at the last half of my Studienkolleg year, entrance exams for art schools were already opening/happening. Aside from having to concentrate on doing all the assignments - including group assignments, presentations and tests, I also worked hard in creating portfolios for the exams. I entered 4 exams, none of which I passed. But that gave me a whole lot of experience. I tried to draw away from the anime/manga style I've got going on since, like, forever. It is hard and people certainly see that in ALL my styles. So yeah. I guess I HAVE tried many different styles and have yet to get any of it going for me. Hey, the resolution was to try, right? I did that. Making outfit illustrations was also to find my own.
I just love hanging my ombre tee on the window and watch orange light pour in
7. Make a DIY Something + 11. Pick Up (a) New Skill(s)
These are one of the funniest (and, not to mention, most dangerous!) ones. Okay, so what I mean by 'make a DIY something' is, actually, following DIY instructions or making my very own. I have yet to come up with my own but have tried other people's on for size. So in the past year, I've managed to give a heart to Mom's old sweater, make a thrifted cardigan fruity and ombre a tee. So I guess my new skill is sewing. But I'm not suddenly a pro or something. I was so careless and stupid that I misplaced one of the needles...then it stabbed me on the foot, the bottom part. Found it! Thank God, a friend of mine was kind and skilful enough to get me through it. Thank you, Dan! Another new skill I learnt in the winter was knitting! My friend, Mimi, taught me how to and we knitted together. Mine turned into Firu's...well, botched scarf. We even knitted while we were in Rome and the girls called us the grandma and grandpa. Haha!
8. Explore New Places + 9. Move Somewhere Else
Oh yes! One of my biggest achievements this year. Let's recap! After my whole birthday happened last year -- which the whole class celebrated along with Dan's, I've discovered a lot of Halle; gone to the Botanical Garden and Chocolate Museum with my class; flown to Rome with some girls; gone to Metzingen, a shopping town with Iva and the gang; fled to Leipzig; made a rocking trip around North-Rhine Westfalia with Iva and the gang; visited Goethe and Schiller in Weimar with Zahra; stepped into Kassel and Göttingen for the very first time and gone hiking to the Saxon Switzerland with Mimi. In the summer, I went to Leipzig, Berlin and Dresden with Firu. Afterwards, he helped me move to Kassel and we explored more of the town. It was...wow! That was a long, long list. Seriously can't wait for more adventures to come this year! You can just read all about them here and I've also made a recap of my trips before here.
12. Buy an Inkling
This was self-explainatory. Clearly, I had to buy an Inkling. Well, at the time, I lacked a scanner (and printer and copier) so it was made obvious to me that purchasing an Inkling would've been a whole lot better than purchasing another scanner -- I purchased one when I was still living in Karlsruhe. What was I thinking? Clearly! I mean, Inkling costed more than a 3-in-one scanner does. It's almost double the price, which was...well, crazy! I purchased both, in the end, because Inkling was far harder to use than I realised and I couldn't make myself get used to it. Purchasing a 3-in-one printer was a whole lot easier. But I did what I intended to do. Happy, past-me?
13. Improve My Blog
What do you guys think? Have I done this or have I not? I really can't answer, lest it'd be totally subjective. Objectively viewed, I can say, at least, that I've changed the layout and there are more readers now. I have also been offered to enter competitions lately and more people leave comments here so...that's got to be something, right? Thank you, by the way, to al the readers for reading my ramblings and sartorial show-offs. I know I'm still far from the blog I wish to have but at least I've moved from one point to another, right? I don't mind if you guys tell me what you think.
17. Have One Hell of a 2nd Anniversary with Firu
I know I didn't really post what we did on the D-day this year but I did write a post about how we met. Anyway, this...well, it quite depends on how you define 'one hell of a 2nd anniv.' This year Firu and I decided -- well, more he than I -- to stay home and bake or make jellies or something. We baked quite a lot this summer and I was quite surprised to realise that we've baked more in the few weeks we were together than we did in the two years of our relationship. But that could count as 'one hell' of something, right? Staying in works sometimes and I love this man for reminding me of that over and over. Oh, did I mention I love him?
18. MAKE a Wonderful Present for Firu's Birthday
Now, the moment of truth. You finally find out what number 18 is. Well, are you disappointed? Haha! So surprise, surprise. The ombre tee I was just telling you about, that was one of Firu's birthday presents. I WAS going to show them to you in a couple's outfit post of some sort. Anyway, now that the cat's out of the bag, I guess there's no harm in showing it to you. This is a his + her ombre tee kind of thing. Mine is this orange one with the face of a lady, so to speak, winking. Firu's is a green ombre one with the face of a gent, again, so to speak, winking too. I want us to wear them together but Firu said guys don't like matching couple's tee like that. Maybe I'm being too matchy-matchy.
Last but DEFINITELY not least...
19. Visit Mom's Grave at Least Once
All the time I've lived out here, not once do I not miss my beloved mother. She is such a role model for me. The perfect human being. The one I can always count on. She is my everything and beyond. It was, of course, quite clear that I should seriously visit her grave. My grandma also told me to do the same thing before I left, which I did just on the way to the airport. When I really miss her, I just cry quietly into the night and wish she would listen. I want to give her a hug, tell her I love her and learn from her -- things I clearly never did enough when she was around. At the very least, I kissed her tombstone before I left. Next time, I'd like to go there with Firu. I hope she'd approve of him.
That was my 19 before 20 list. Wow! 14 out of 19? That's a good start, right? I did set out small goals because this was my first time making such lists. What should the 20 before 21 list look like? Let me think about it and get back to you on that. Many things I have yet done are either I feel unimportant or have yet to reach. Feel free to make a list of your own. Trust me, the year was a whole lot more fun with goals to reach. Happy achieving! Cheerio!