Saturday, 30 December 2017

December in Overview

The face of a grandma focused on creating paper cut-outs (would've been cooler if I was sewing, right?)

December was a terrible month for me, mentally. For the past three years, every time December rolls around, I am quickly reminded of the giddy feeling in my stomach, looking forward to spending winter break with Firu. Unfortunately, now it's really just a dream. I felt deeply unappreciated, unloved and absolutely alone—especially on campus. Needless to say, I used other means to cope with it—joining workshops, reading tons of books, listening to various podcasts, etc. To top it all off, I am broke as all hell. Then Christmas and New Year's break rolled around and I can't be more grateful for it. It allows me the time to really sort out my shit, prepare for changes I'm planning to make in the new year and, basically, taking breaks from the daily stresses of life. However, I am transported back to the days when I hated any kind of time designated for festivities—like the weekends or holidays—so I'm sorry if I don't sound too excited now.

Currently Reading

Still continuing with the Harry Potter series, after what felt like the longest 2 weeks of my life, I finally finished The Goblet of Fire. I had to go back and re-watch the film to this one, as I haven't watched in maybe over ten years. This is where the film and the book start to really branch into two very different entities. Afterwards, I decided to take a little break from the Harry Potter universe and opt for Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, a small, modern story that really contrasts the wizarding world—felt like I was jolted back to reality, although still quite magical in a high-tech kind of way. A little surprise awaited me, when I discovered that the brief prequel, Ajax Penumbra 1969, was also included inside. Lastly, I braced myself as I started on The Order of the Phoenix. I asked a lot of people how to actually read this book and everyone came up with the funniest answers. But, since it's very heavy and I have an aversion towards e-book, I'm also reading When the Killing's Done by T. C. Boyle simultaneously. This one is for the commute and those lulls outside the house.

Currently Watching

This month I really didn't seek out films to watch, aside from The Goblet of Fire, actually. But I did watch a few new and enlightening motion pictures. First of all, I am proud to say that I've finally watch the legendary Shawshank Redemption. Honestly, I totally understand how it could have been such a classic. It is so heartbreaking and inspiring in a lot of ways. Absolutely worth watching! Then my sister dragged me to see Coco, which, at first, wasn't appealing to me, but in the end I got really invested in it. Many say it's a tearjerker, but neither my sister nor I cried over it—I guess we just can't relate. It is very immaculately done, of course, as it's Disney. I thought it was going to resonate with Book of Life, but it's completely different. I also watched 2 documentaries. First one is called Titanic 20 Years Later with James Cameron—on NatGeo—that shows James Cameron's research post-film, where he finds out so many facts about the ship and the victims, which render the film invalid. The second one is called Science to the Rescue! The Science of Adolescence—on NHK World—that digs deep into the inner workings of adolescents' brains. It really explains the emo phase a lot!

Currently Listening

For whatever reason, for the majority of the month, I really prefer listening to people talk rather than sing, so I haven't been listening to songs much. Instead, I've been watching a lot of Youtube videos—and discovering a few Youtubers I turned out to like—and listening to podcasts. Aside from the ones that I've mentioned before—which I still listen to even now—I've also discovered a couple new ones. The first one is called All the Wonders, which is a podcast for children's books. One of my favourite illustrators posted about being in this podcast months ago—honestly can't remember who it was—and it turns out that a lot of my favourite illustrators have made an appearance. I love how passionately Matthew Winner, the host, talks about each book! The second one is called Out of Line, which describes itself as "Online personalities share offline realities." I first found out about it from Elsie Larson, since she shared her adoption story from China. Absolutely inspiring! So far, she seems to be the only guest that I'm familiar with, but I'm willing to know more.

Highlight of the Month

Workshop #1: Surprise box // workshop #2: basic handlettering // the Hogwarts persona of Firu and myself // Marine Heritage Gallery opening // first outfit flatlay in such a long time // a book borrowed from Uli // currently reading + fast food // reunited with the Germany gang again! // first time visiting the new-and-improved National Library, it's huge!

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