read if you want. I don't care.
Alright I don't think I've ever done an album review, but this album deserves it. It's freaking amazing. It's Kris Wu's debut album "Antares." It came out on November 2, 2018 through Ace Unit Culture Media. Alright you might be thinking, "who's Kris Wu?" "Is he new?" And the answer is no. He was actually part of EXO from 2012 to 2014, as their main rapper. So you might have guessed it. His music is all going to be hip hop/rap, so if you don't prefer listening to hip hop/rap, you can stop reading here, or you could continue reading and find out you have a hidden love for hip hop/rap.
It's very rare (at least I think it is) for people to like EVERY. SINGLE. SONG. On an album, but I truly loved all of these songs. I highly recommend giving this album a listen. He also has two other singles out: B.M. and July. Those are really good, too.
In high school, we were all told to learn a second language in order to graduate. Well in college, as you all know, you can choose to take whatever you want. That includes learning another language. Now I’m currently taking an Italian 101A and everyone I tell always ask me the same question. Why are you doing that? I like learning languages. Languages are something I have been interested in because I always wanted to travel outside of the US. Besides that, there are so many reasons why you should or shouldn’t learn a new language. With that said, here are the pros and cons of learning multiple languages.
So as you can see, there are quite a bit of pros and cons when it comes to learning new languages. You have to take into consideration which one is more important – expanding your social circle or being to speak your native language more fluently. Is it more important to give yourself an advantage when it comes to applying for a job or would you be more afraid of making small grammatical mistakes on the important documents you might have to write up in the future? Do you want to be able to go up to people in a different country for directions when you’re lost or would you rather take your time trying to figure it out yourself?
Alright, you might be wondering "wow she's finally posting something." Yes. I'm sorry for my lack of articles because to be completely honest, I haven't done anything interesting that I thought was worth blogging about. Since high school has ended for me, i've been working at a summer program, then school started and my routine became, school, work, home, repeat. Yay me... But recently, as you can assume by the title, I went to Myanmar with my family. We stayed there for two weeks, touring around the southern part of Myanmar and visiting my dad's side of the family because they all live in Myanmar.
To be completely honest, there was a bit of a culture shock to me. I've gone to Myanmar before, but that was 13-14 years ago and I was 5, so I don't remember much. Now getting to see everything and being able to remember all of this is truly a blessing. I found out that I have 15 other cousins on my dad's side who are all older than me (i'm currently 18)!! That's over three times the amount of cousins I have on my mom's side. And the thing is, Burmese people are all really nice. I now understand why my great-grandparents went back to Myanmar instead of staying in the US. There are so many people (strangers included) who are willing to take care of them. It was really fun getting to go to see my relatives, but let's get into the places that I visited.
1. Yangon (Rangoon)
YOOOO Yangon is such an amazing and hectic city. Well Myanmar is all like this, but OMG!! Driving there is like a real-life Mario Kart race. They even have the little red and white striped curbs.
Anyways, our first stop on this trip was to Yangon because:
We had just gotten off the plane and were greeted at the airport by our relatives, and they came with bouquets of flowers. Everyone was just so excited all of a sudden and it was such a happy sight. (I still miss them so much.) Thought we were still a little jetlagged, we didn't go straight to the hotel because it was still too early to check in. We all went to visit the shwedagon Pagoda. I didn't know that we couldn't wear tight pants (nor did I know that we were going to a pagoda that day) when entering a pagoda, so my aunts had to buy a skirt (Longyi) for me to wear before entering because this pagoda is Myanmar's most sacred religious monument.
Our trip continues and spent the next couple days visiting relatives we haven't seen in a long time.
If you want to read more about the Shwedagon Pagoda (this dress code will apply for most, if not all pagodas in Myanmar): www.tripsavvy.com/shwedagon-pagoda-in-yangon-1458252
On the first day of our road trip, we went from Yangon to Mandalay. If you're going to drive from place to place, make sure you have a driver with the car because driving in Myanmar is crazy. It took a good 6-7 hours. (It's like driving from LA to San Francisco.) When we got to Mandalay, we visited the following places:
While in Mandalay, we stayed at a hotel called Sein Sein. This hotel wasn't bad; They had a nice view of the city and the restrooms were very clean. It was just a little difficult to find the light switch because it's just a button. They have one at the main door, outside the bathroom door, and in between the two beds.
Next stop: Bagan. I also say I visited Bagan around because in burmese, bagan also translate to plate.
Bagan is famous for their multitude of pagodas. And okay, to be completely honest here, I don't remember which pagodas I went to because we went to so many in Bagan. All of them are beautiful to look at and all have their own history behind it. Here's a few that I went to (based off my photos.)
While in Bagan, we stayed at Bagan Thande Hotel. It comes with a really beautiful riverside view where you can also eat your breakfast. That's where I twisted my ankle and got a bloody nose. Yay... There are a lot of stairs in between each room/Bungalow. So be careful. You have been warned.
4. Shan State
In Shan State, We mainly went to go see Inle Lake because I had been there before and my sister and I wanted to ride a boat. As we rode the boat, we got to see how people went fishing to sell at the market, how the traditional clothes were made, and the women of the Kayan Lahwi Tribe. while we were at the clothing store, I bought a bag (heehee.) But we did also visit other places in Shan State. Here is the following places we visited:
In Shan State, we stayed at Hotel Maine Li. It was close to Inle Lake and it wasn't too bad. My mom claims it was her favorite based on cleanliness. My sister said it feel more like an apartment. I think it was nice because it came with a nice balcony too.
To be honest, we didn't do anything here. We just stopped here for a night because the trip back to Yangon was going to be a long one. Since it was a little higher up north, people were wearing their puffers and beanies, while my family was walking around with pants and a light jacket with a T-shirt underneath LOL.
But yeah, that was all we did on our trip around Myanmar. I hope one day, you also get to visit this beautiful country. Make sure to bring some loose pants with you and beware of mosquitos. They also know if you're a foreigner. Also if you have any relatives in Myanmar, go to these pagodas with them because for some of the pagodas, you have to pay if you're a tourist. (There was one couple who knew they had to pay, so they ran past through the entrance with their heads down LOL.)
If you're going to a college freshman like me this upcoming fall, you might be thinking "I need to make some money this summer to pay for some of my college tuition" or "I've got nothing to prepare for this summer. Time to have some fun." Either way, you're probably thinking of something you need or want to do this summer, so here are a couple of suggestions.
Things To Do This Summer
Those are just a few of my suggestions for what you could do this summer. If you want to see more, you could visit my Pinterest page just for summer activities. www.pinterest.com/samanthaltun/summer/
That is it for this week's article. Thank you for reading and I hope you have an amazing summer. Also happy 4th! It's coming up soon.
Recently, I had visited the beautiful state of Arizona for four days. Known for its glorious canyons and rich Native American history, my family and I traveled to and explore the Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, and the city of Sedona. While they were beautiful to look at, let's go over what I would recommend taking on a trip that would require a lot of hiking and walking in general.
It must be strange seeing that I wanted to bring extra long pants and long sleeved shirts, despite the hot weather that comes with being in the desert. The thing I learned about hiking in the canyons is that it isn't smart wearing shorts and a tank top. When I went to Horseshoe Bend, there was a lot of sand (as expected) and wind. The wind was so strong that the little pebbles and sand were picked up and hit us so hard. It was actually painful. So definitely bring some extra clothing to act some kind of padding.
Anyways, that is it for things that you should bring to a desert climate. It really does help to bring more clothes and have more layers to prevent harm from flying pebbles and other potential danger. And also always, thank you for reading this week's article. I hope you all are having an amazing summer and peace out!!
At the beginning of the school year, my English teacher gave the class an assignment to write a person/place/idea essay. It had to consist of at least of those options (which was easier enough because almost everyone can think of a person/place/idea that they can talk about.) With high school coming to an end (which it did yesterday), I decided to talk about the idea of closing multiple chapters in your life. What I mean by chapters are the different stages in life. I wanted to talk about what lesson I have learned from multiple people and experiences throughout my pre-educational years, elementary school, middle school, high school, and what I wanted to learn throughout life because we learn something new every day. Whether it be from simply learning how to copy and paste text on a computer to developing a cure for cancer. It's the little things we do in life that will change someone to be better and will give us a lesson/story to tell future generations.
My mom has always told me that throughout life, there are going to be challenges that seem like they're going to define us for the future years to come. It's important to work hard to face those challenges head-on, but if we fail, we shouldn't let those failures define us. Those failures should be something we learn from. Failures do not control/define who we are. It will only if you let it. These failures might seem huge at the time being but when you look back on them, hopefully, you've learned something about yourself, and are making an effort to change things. History shouldn't repeat itself. As of June 12th, I have officially closed another chapter of my life and going to start a new one. With college opening up more doors of opportunity, I hope, to all of the class of 2018, that you keep up the amazing work you have been doing. Something you've done has worked for you because you have made it this far. Best of luck to all and look at the world with a brighter perspective. It will be worth it.
If you would like to read my person/place/idea essay, you can click on the file below. It will lead to a PDF of my essay.
**By the way, if you are iffy on reading it, I got a perfect score on it, but there is a bit of profanity in it.
As June has begun, it marks the beginning of summer, and the end of my senior year of high school. Since May, I've been so busy with the numerous activities that keep coming weekly. First, I had my GradNite #1 at California Adventure, then AP testing started and went on for about 3 weeks throughout May. After AP testing, there was the last dance of the school year, and then the senior class cabinet planned a 3-day retreat similar to the one many of us have gone on in 6th grade (except this was more mature and had less science in it.) After retreat, we have now caught up to the present times where my official (and second) GradNite is going to take place at Universal Studios tonight. (I'm so excited to see Marshmello DJ.)
I could definitely say that this year was the craziest year yet. With college applications to the empty chair segment to PCN and now GradNite. I just wanted to share my thoughts with my fellow students.
Graduation Speech (Part II)
With graduation coming up in 2 days, that also means that I have to start working soon!! This summer, I'm going to be working as an art teacher so look out for student artwork this summer. I hope they have fun with it because I personally would love to do these projects if I were in elementary school again. But I will definitely start to blog more because this second semester has been hectic. I felt bad for not posting in so long that I'm typing this up instead of studying for my economics final tomorrow. But priorities, am I right? With that said, here's to a crazy year and crazy memories. [Pictures are included.]
Doughnuts and fried chicken are some of most popular foods in America, why not get them both at the same place? Introducing Astro: Doughnuts and Fried Chicken. (They also sell sandwiches.) Recently, I went to downtown Los Angeles to shoot some pictures for a photography assignment. (I will be posting all of the images I took for this assignment when it is done.) With downtown LA being super crowded that day due to the multitude of events going on, I found street parking near Astro: Doughnuts and Fried Chicken on W. 6th St. in between S. Grand Ave. and S. Olive St. near Perishing Square. Just driving around looking for parking, Astro caught my eye. I wanted to check it out, and so I did after taking my pictures. When I walked in, it was a bit different from other stores. The first thing I noticed is that not many of the employees smiled or greeted me at the door. Only one did, and there were about two or three other employees working in the front. Most of them simply looked up and went back to their work. Aside from that, the store itself was small. There were about three tables in front of the cashier and two window seats. The two of the three tables seated up to four people, and the other only seated two. The maximum capacity for Astro was only about 74 people. But that's enough about the environment. Let's get to the food.
I had gotten a Strawberry Rhubarb which was a doughnut with strawberry glaze and powdered sugar and something else. I don't exactly know what it was, but I know it doesn't have peanuts for all my readers with peanut allergies. I really loved the donut because unlike most doughnuts, it didn't have such a sweet taste. It was lighter on the sugar and didn't feel like junk food. (Does that make sense?) The doughnut was so fluffy and I think it was baked rather than fried. I enjoyed it very much. In addition to the doughnut, I got five pieces of chicken fingers. I though they would be small and not have a lot of meat because everything is getting more expensive, but nope. I was wrong. There was a lot of white meat in the chicken fingers and they were quite big. The best part is that the chicken fingers were fresh out of the fryer. They were also very good. They had a nice crunch to it when bitting into it. The only problem I had was that the breading had a lot of pepper in it. I'm not a huge fan of having a lot of pepper in my food, so if there were less pepper, I could have given these chicken fingers a 10/10.
There are some interesting options at Astro: Donuts & Fried Chicken, so if you would like, you should definitely check it out. There are only two stores in the US: one in DTLA and one in Washington DC. (Sorry to the people who don't live in those areas and were interested in checking it out.)
If you want to see the full menu and more reviews on this little donut and fried chicken joint, I linked their Yelp page and official website down below. Thanks for reading this week's blog post.
You could find more information at...
their website: astrodoughnuts.com/
their Yelp page: www.yelp.com/biz/astro-doughnuts-and-fried-chicken-los-angeles?osq=Astro+Donuts+and+Fried+Chicken
They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera is a story about two boys who receive a call from Death Cast, informing them that they could die within the next 24 hours.
This book was recently introduced to me by a friend during my AP statistics class. I knew it was going to be a good read when my friend started crying in class because he finished the book. Of course, for the title itself, we expect the two characters are going to die at the end of the book, but for some reason, I wanted there to be a twist where the two main characters actually live at the end. The minute I picked up the book, I knew I wasn't going to be able to put it down. This book took me back to my elementary school days when I would read any book that fell into my lap. Ever since I started high school, my number one priority has become homework and studying. Now that there is less work since I'm in my second semester of my senior year and it's spring break, I would read this book through the night and ride the emotional roller coaster with this book. It is definitely worth the read. It's similar to other books like If I Stay by Gayle Forman and Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver.
Some of my favorite quotes from the book are:
Thanks for reading this blog article. I really hope this encourages you to go out and read more books. (AND THIS BOOK) Reading is something that is becoming more and more creatively destroyed by e-books, kindles, and other PDFs. So please, go to your local library and kick back with a good book. There's definitely a difference between reading an e-book and reading a physical book.
The weather is finally warming up in Southern California which means it's time to hit the beach. While beaches are fun to hang out at with your friends, it's also fun not getting sunburnt. Recently while going to Sephora with my cousin to look for some skin care products, I ran across some sunscreen products. I normally don't wear sunscreen on the daily, but I was interested in the Supergoop! Skin Soothing Mineral Sunscreen with Olive Polyphenols a try. What stuck out to me was the word "mineral". Previously, a friend told me that mineral sunscreen feels better on your skin and it doesn't leave that nasty "i have dried sweat all over me" feeling.
With that in mind, I bought the sunscreen for $28 and later found out it had a rating of 4.4 stars on Amazon. And I tested it out on my skin in the shop. When I brought it home and opened it, I first looked for the reviews and then the next day, I applied it onto my face. The cool thing about this sunscreen is how natural it feels. It doesn't feel like the sunscreen is clogging up your pores and making your skin feel more oily with every application. According to Beauty Editor, all the other chemical based sunscreen get absorbed into your skin to protect you from absorbing the sun's rays, whereas the mineral based sunscreens are more of a reflector of the sun's rays. After some more research, I found that there are lots of benefits from using a mineral sunscreen. I suggest reading the article from the Beauty Editor. I will link the article down below. Thanks for reading my first product review. If you have any suggestions on what I should talk about in the next product review or something I could improve upon, please don't be shy and leave your tips in the comments below. Anyway I have you have a lovely day and I'll see ya next time. Peace out!!
Beauty Editor Article: www.beautyeditor.ca/2011/06/15/should-you-use-a-mineral-sunscreen-heres-why-you-might-consider-it-and-7-beauty-editor-approved-prodz-to-choose-from
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