Monday, July 16, 2012

Arrivals and Departures

Outside of the Spaghetti Warehouse
It's almost midnight here in Dallas, so I thought I'd update my blog before heading out tomorrow morning to the airport :> My cousin arrived today, bursting at the seems with excitement. He was desperate for some pictures of Dallas, and he got a few of the new bridge, but not enough. (Hopefully he'll get some tomorrow on the way to the airport.) On the way to our grandparents house we stopped at the Spaghetti Warehouse, which I, surprisingly, had never been to, living in Dallas and loving spaghetti. The restaurant was absolutely adorable on the inside, with unique things everywhere. We ate in an old Dallas street car, but there were some tables made of bed frames and such. We received luck from our family on our trip. It's hard to believe we'll be in Japan so soon.

DFW Airport
Our flight will be filled with Japanese animated movies and lots of studying with little sleep. I highly doubt I'm going to make it the entire plane ride without sleeping an hour or two, though^^; I'll probably end up staying up all night long and be super tired on our 13 hour trip to Tokyo plus another 2 hours to Nagoya. As Greg and I are unpacking our things I'm sure we'll find some time to update our blogs and maybe even film some video <3
Bye-Bye for now~

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Leaving in TWO days!!

My cousin comes in tomorrow from Virginia and I'm super duper mega ultra excited^-^ I leave for Japan in just TWO short days!! I'm going to explode <3 Not only have I not seen my cousin in a while (because it's been difficult for him to go on leave in the Navy, since he's been saving up his days for this trip), but did I mention we'll be in Japan for an entire month? (Sarcasm doesn't work well over the internet, I'm aware XD). I made a super long packing list and checked everything a million times just to make sure I didn't forget anything^^; The plane ride from Dallas to Tokyo will be about 13 hours (which I'm not too ecstatic about =^=), but I'll learn to live, since we're bringing a ton of movies to watch and I need to study~ I'll keep this blog relatively short. Tomorrow, I'll post pictures of Greg's arrival! Bye-Bye!! <3
... This always makes my day :>

Friday, July 13, 2012


Individuality - 
1. the particular character, or aggregate of qualities, that distinguishes one person or thing from others; sole and personal nature: a person of marked individuality.
2. the qualities that distinguish one person or thing from another; identity

I'm not entirely sure the world is aware of this topic, and I'm quite aware that I'm not the only person surrounded by close minded people, dead set in their ways, unwilling to listen to reason. Respecting someone's beliefs is one thing, but shoving your thoughts and ways of conformity down humanity's throat isn't going to help save the world. I'm sure everyone will take what they want from statements like that, but everyone has their own reasons. Because someone is different, whether religion or style or culture, doesn't mean they deserve to be hated; in fact, it will do absolutely nothing.

I realize acceptance isn't something you can expect from society. And there will always be someone who disagrees with you. But, as a child, I was constantly spoon fed the words "Be yourself". I know most teenagers my age lack originality and merely do whatever the rest of the crowd does. And that's fine. If you are truly just like everyone else, then don't force yourself to be something your not. But because someone doesn't fit the role of the average person doesn't lessen their worth as a being. 

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

People lack self worth. Those who strive to merely achieve their own goals against every other force are the ones who truly grow as people. Why should you care for that? I'm not sure. It depends on your morals. And maybe you don't care. But that's just who you are, and regardless of whether you brainwash yourself to be like everyone else or you stick out like a sore thumb, you'll be equal to everyone around you.

 “The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”
Coco Chanel

I don't want to sit and preach to the world about individuality and how it's a necessity to the world. I do things because I want to, not because I'm expected. All day long I hear that I should NOT be going to Japan because of some random selfish or religious reason that some close minded person makes up. And all my life I've heard that I deserve some awful punishment for being different than another person. I'm not going to step down to people like that. Pursue yourself, not someone else's idea of what should or shouldn't be your life.

“You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
Friedrich Nietzsche

“I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.”

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Preparations and Models

Groovy Floral Sunglasses Necklace
I leave for Japan in 5 more days! I've been doing a poop ton of studying and packing, and I'll be going out tomorrow morning to do any last minute shopping^-^ My passport also FINALLY came in this morning. It was ridiculously close to the deadline; as in beyond acceptable. I'm glad it came in today though, because it relieved soooo much stress off me^^; The passport was said not to get her until MONDAY, which is the day before I leave. And with all the issues I've been having with the passport office, I didn't exactly trust them. I had issues with the office not accepting my ORIGINAL birth certificate, and they didn't accept my father's proof of identity, so tons of forms had to be filled out and we ended up forking over a but ton of money. Even though with had paid the expedited fee, it STILL took longer then even a regular passport. I've been nervous and furious, but now everything is starting to lay out a lot better than first imagined. Other than all the stress, I've had a ton of fun packing, surprisingly, and ended up making a super cute necklace~

Iska Ithil
Lately, I've developed a new obsession with a British model who goes by the name Iska Ithil. She truly is one of the most charming and unique model's I've seen, with a sugary sweet accent that could make anyone smile. She's like an adorable alien goddess of beauty. Obviously, since she's a model, it seems as if she doesn't have a flaw in sight, but she's got a quirky personality that makes you fall in love. With her constantly changing hair and crazy makeup, it's obvious she's like no one you've ever seen (especially with the gills/ claw scratches on her neck). Iska isn't the average model, and I truly admire her. <3 It's an entirely new type of beauty. I know many aren't crazy about her piercings or shaved head, but the more you see of her, the more you appreciate the individually this world has to offer. Check her Facebook page if you're interested. I'm sure she'd love the support. <3

The truly gorgeous, Rose Shock. Not an official model, but a blogger in cosmetic school who has some serious makeup skill. She's done modeling, but not as a living. She's another unique one who doesn't care much for what others think of her. She's from Finland, but can speak English pretty fluently, so a lot of her blog is in English, too. She always has a new style to show and a seemly graceful way of doing her insane make up. Check her out at! 

Well, that's all I have for now! I'll post again soon^-^ Maybe even try to translate it in Japanese, if I can manage. Bye- Bye~

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Yamasa Casa

A recent picture of the sunset in Okazaki
In a little less than eleven days, I'll be flying to Japan with my elder cousin, Greg, and both of us are extremely excited. ^-^ He arrives in Dallas the 16th of July and we leave for Tokyo the next morning, and then take another plane to Nagoya. After all of those plane rides, we'll take our hour long train ride to Okazaki, where we will be staying for an entire month, attending Yamasa SILAC program. Once we get there it'll be the 19th (skipping the 18th because of the International Date Line, like the time travelers we are) and we'll probably be totally exhausted from total boredom. The next morning we will take our placement exams, and even though I've studied my butt off, I'll probably end up in the beginner course because I've never actually taken a Japanese class, and everything I know is entirely self taught (oh dear XD). My cousin has convinced me that even if I die of massive brain overload, I'll at least be applying myself to a good cause. Plus, he's going to get an ear full from me anyways, asking questions and whatnot. But in the end, we'll have loads of fun and learn lots of Japanese :D

I'm not only excited for Yamasa, but for our trip to Tokyo. We get to go to a concert Friday night and Saturday, Greg and I are going to the Sumida River Fireworks Festival. :D The weekend before that, we are going to Kyoto (which will be the first weekend we are there) and we'll probably purchase Yukatas to wear to the festival. We're also staying long enough for the Bon Festival, which, AGAIN, I am super mega excited for. It'll be a whole new experience for the both of us.

At Yamasa, students are expected to study 3 hours a night. At first, when I heard that news I thought that would be dreadful because I'm in high school and I don't even study for those classes DX. But then I realized that studying 3 hours a night is absolutely nothing in comparison to the amount I study now, and such a task would be no problem at all. So, those worries are gone, but I'm still really nervous about the placement exam. DX I REALLY don't want to bomb the first test I ever take in Japan; although I think that might be impossible because I'm not exactly sure how one would fail a placement exam. I've read that the students taking the exam all were placed perfectly through blogs, but I've read nothing about the actual exam itself... So I suppose I'll be one of the few who do post anything about the exam^^;

In the mean time, I'll study my hardest until the day comes~ さよăȘら!

... As for the title, it rhymed XD No other reason for choosing it other than I'll be living at Yamasa short term.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Anime Shenanigans

Grahhhh! >^< I've been neglecting my my Japanese studies for anime! And blogging, too! I'm such a sad, hopeless otaku. On another note I got to see some extremely awesome anime in the mean time! I completed Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, which was suggested by a butt load of friends^-^ And surprisingly, for a mecha series, I really liked it. It's one of those short purely plot animes that don't drag on forever with the battles like Dragon Ball Z or Bleach or Yu-gi-oh. Not that any of those series are bad, but the matches last waaaaay too long XD. It does have places where it recaps you and one purely filler episode, though that one is a little necessary if you go slow with the anime and don't just blaze through it like me. The static-ness of the main character, Simon, was something I really enjoyed~ Actually, all the characters grow on you pretty quick, each possessing a unique personality. I'm not here to spill any spoilers, but if you like something that will make you emotional with plot twists and a great story line, then you'll definitely enjoy Gurren. Though the mechas play a huge role in the series, it doesn't take away it's charm at all. It's sorta like Gundum + Cowboy Bebop + This Ugly Yet Beautiful World. I would honestly suggest it to anyone that was interested <3

What to say about Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica... Well, every single advertisement you ever see about this show is wrong. Seriously, it's all a freakin' lie. All those cute pictures of five magical girls together with one adorable bunny cat alien thing are pretty much misleading, because this anime is depressing as crap XD. You pretty much are always on the edge of your seat wanting to punch your laptop/desktop the ENTIRE time. I'll try not to spoil too much for you, but this series does an awesome job of ripping your heart out in just 12 episodes. You'll get super attached to a character or two or all of them, and they'll probably end up dead in some gruesome way or another. And definitely not just once, either. The twisted little alien, Kyubey, gives each girl these unimaginable powers to fight these monsters called "witches" in exchange for one wish of whatever they chose, and each girl gets different powers depending on the wish. The plot is enticing, but if your expecting happiness, this show doesn't provide it. In the end, though, it's really good. If I were asked to suggest this to someone... Well, I'd just have to say "Watch it if you really want to know, but watch it all."

I started another series called "Samurai Champloo" which, I will admit, is pretty original. It's unlike anything I've ever seen before. It's by the same director who did "Cowboy Bebop", which is amazing, so I'm expecting the same quality of work, although the anime itself is A LOT different. The fighting style of the main character combines martial arts and break dancing (which I'm not exactly interested in, but this show made me like it a lot more, surprisingly) and seems to work extremely well for him. The story is set during the Edo period of Japan, which is pretty much a time period of isolationist policies of government and strict social order, where violence with swords is looked down upon. Mugen, the main character (who looks a little like Spike from Cowboy Bebop, huh?) hates Jin (the guy with fair skin, glasses, and the pony tail) for no particular reason, and they're at each other's throats, holding back from a death match because they owe a little barmaid a favor. Fuu is seeking their help to find someone, and I guess you'll have to watch to find out the rest ;3

One of my childhood animes in back in business in the world of Ash, and I've recently decided to rewatch the super cute "Demashita! PowerPuff Girls Z"! Cartoon Network Japan took the 90s cartoon I knew and loved and turned it into an anime series back in 2006, which is when I started watching the series. What I didn't realize was there was 52 episodes of it. I'm not into the idea of watching 52 episodes of the SAME thing over and over as I was when I was small and watching the American version, but so far, they've done an awesome job of keeping at least different villains to defeat and challenges. Obviously, they kept the classic colors and names, but added a "Sailor Moon" approach to it. Yep, they transform into magical heroines. They aren't sisters, though, and Professor Utonium isn't their dad. He's merely the scientist that cause the problem (or blessing) in these middle school girls lives. They kept all the same villains and characters you came to know and love as a child and added a son named Ken with a robot dog. In my opinion, even though it isn't the original PowerPuffs, the series is still extremely adorable, if not more adorable than the original. So don't knock it before you try it cause you just might like it!

Heroic Age is an anime that I've been meaning to watch for a LONG time and just now got around to it. And it is SO much better than I thought it would ever be. I don't know if I mentioned this, but I really don't like mecha series. They're just hard for me to get into. But this one is a lot different, sort like Gurren Lagann. The story takes place in the distant future, and there are these tribes that consist of different species who rule the universe. The Gold Tribe was keeping balance, but vanished, leaving the newest tribe that they had created to fend for itself. This tribe was called the Iron Tribe, which is humanity. The Silver Tribe rose and attempts to push humanity to extinction. Commanders of the home planet have sent humans on a search of a savior foretold in the prophecy. The series is like SciFi meets mythology and has an anime baby with amazing characters. It's only 26 episodes, and definitely worth watching, even if it's only the first episode.

Sorry if you don't care much for the busy life of an otaku~ But seriously check a series or two of these out! I'm off to study more Japaneseeee! <3 I'll catch up on this blog later! And be back with trips of Japan! Only 16 more days until I leave! I'm way too excited >w< Maybe my hair will be teal next time! Til' then enjoy this INCREDIBLY CUTE little girl singing Tsukema Tsukeru!