My Study Playlist

I know I’m not just speaking for myself when I say that homework and studying can be MISERABLE. Most of the time, the only thing that can help me focus and write a paper or study is a really good playlist. Here are some of my favorite songs to listen to to keep me on task and motivated. What are your study songs? Comment them down below!

Chill:

Rise Up- Andra Day

Slow Hands- Niall Horan

Waiting on the World to Change- John Mayer

Yours- Russell Dickerson

Growing Up- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (ft. Ed Sheeran)

Better Man- Little Big Town

Carry On- Fun

My Wish- Rascal Flatts

Terrified- Katherine McPhee

In Case You Didn’t Know- Brett Young

For Her- Chris Lane

Motivating:

Last Name- Carrie Underwood

Here I Go Again- Whitesnake

Can’t Get You Out of My Head- Kylie Minogue

Shoutout to my Ex- Little Mix

Underage- Kelsea Ballerini

Perfect Strangers- Jonas Blue

Love- Jana Kramer

Think of You- Chris Young (ft. Cassadee Pope)

Back Home- Andy Grammar

Life is a Highway- Rascal Flatts

Hold it Against Me- Britney Spears

 

 

Life Through A Lens #18- Campus Life

Santa Monica beach views of the Georgian Hotel and beautiful palm trees.

A break from campus with a night out on the town. Emily Saliers concert at The Troubadour was amazing!

First meet of my collegiate career! I don’t know what was better, the experience or the view ❤

Views from the top of the Pepperdine campus.

Malibu at sunset is nothing less than breathtaking.

My beautiful campus part 1…

…and part 2…

…and finally part 3.

Cotton candy skies make any day better. Still can’t believe that I live here!

#fitgirllife- Eating Clean in College

One of my biggest fears going into college was food. Not necessarily how good it was going to be (though that was something this foodie worried about), but how hard it was going to be to eat healthy. I had heard so much about “freshman 15” and seen so many friends come back from their first year having gained a lot of weight. Once I got to college, I scoped out the food situation and quickly figured out how to eat healthy and clean. I wrote down everything I ate for 3 days, and have it all down below for you to reference. Please keep in mind that on all three of these days, I had 3- 3 1/2 hours of hard workouts, so the calories (though I don’t count them) and quantity may seem a little high. I hope this helps and gives you some ideas about how to eat healthy in college!

Day 1:

2 hour swim

2 eggs over easy with Sriracha

Bagel with cream cheese

Bacon

Half a cup of coffee w/milk

1 rice cracker

1 banana with peanut butter

1 bag Skinny Pop (100 kcal)

1 hour weights

1/2 bottle Kevita Kombucha

Celery and peanut butter

1 grilled chicken breast with grilled asparagus and zucchini

 

Day 2:

2 hour swim

1/2 avocado and 2 eggs on 1 English muffin with Sriracha

Bacon

1 cup coffee w/ milk

1 rice cake

1 banana

Chobani yoghurt

1/4 cup granola

1 1/2 hour weights

Tomato and veggie soup (from Pacific)

Apples

Hummus and pita

 

Day 3:

2 eggs over easy on 1 piece of rye toast with Sriracha

Bacon

1/2 cup coffee

Fruit cup

Egg salad sandwich

1 hour weights

Small chia seed bar

1 packet of Trader Joe’s peanut trail mix

2 hour swim

1/2 bottle Kevita Kombucha

Grilled chicken with whole wheat pasta with tomato sauce and kale

1 rice cake

 

To Old Ends & New Beginnings

Over the past 3 months, I’ve gone through a roller coaster of emotions, physical changes and new experiences. I was always told that going to college was a big step, and the first step into adulthood and the so called “real world”, but I never imagined it to be as monumental as it has been. I feel like the whole process first started with graduation (graduation post linked below). Walking across that stage and holding my diploma was the end of one part of my life, and naturally began the next. Summer was interesting, to say the least. And don’t get me wrong, summer was super fun, maybe even the best summer so far, but it came with a lot of reflection. There were days where I couldn’t wait to be in college in my new life, and then in the very next minute I would be sobbing hysterically at the thought of leaving my family. And there were days where I would spend hours getting excited about all the new things to come and there were other days where I would find myself missing high school beyond imagine. But no matter how I felt or what was happening, I couldn’t escape the fact that I was counting down the days until I was in college.

At the end of our summer vacation, we had flown back into Singapore. For me, the next time I would be doing this would be Christmas, after the first semester of my first year in college. At that point I only had one week left in the life that I had always known. It was an emotion week, to say the least. Every time I said goodbye to a person I had a relationship with or every time I left a place I loved for the last time, my heart sunk a little. 2 days before I left, I went to one of my favorite places in Singapore: the Marina Bay. My family and I stood outside Marina Bay Sands and took pictures while soaking in the beauty around us. In that moment, I was overcome with gratitude. I was grateful to have been raised by such a beautiful, open and diverse little island.

The next 36 hours were not the same. I was not grateful but I was sad, angry and depressed. I said by to my sister as she left for practice at 5 am. I buried my head into our couch and bawled as she walked out the door. I said bye to my doggy as he left for a walk and we waiter for our cab, the same time I said by to the house that I called my home. I said bye to my dad, standing outside immigration at the airport as I sobbed and made a scene. I said bye to Singapore as our place detached from Singapore soil, crying into my moms shoulder. And I cried again as we landed in LA, already missing my home. And finally, I said bye to my mom, one of my best friends, as we stood outside my dorm. We laughed, hugged and cried for a solid 10 minutes, before we forced ourselves to say goodbye. It was the end of a 3 month process of closures and goodbyes. I was emotionally exhausted by then and was missing everyone and everything I said bye to. I felt like I had gone through a lifetime of tears in those 3 months.

Sitting in my room, just minutes after saying by to my mom with tears still streaming down my face, I began to think about the magnitude of what all the tears and goodbyes meant. It occurred to me that what made the goodbyes so hard was also what made me the luckiest girl in the world. The goodbyes wouldn’t have been so hard if I hadn’t had so many people and places in my life that cared about me, inspired me and loved me. And while I still missed everyone and everything back home so much, I chose, in that moment, gratitude over sadness. Just like at graduation, I chose to be grateful for the relationships than to be sad that they were no longer right there. Because just like Winnie the Pooh says, “how lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard”. And by choosing gratitude, I allowed myself to open up for a brand new start, a new adventure, knowing that all the people, places and things I said goodbye to were always standing right behind me.

Graduation post: https://swimeatlove.com/2017/07/09/a-goodbye-to-high-school/

Life Through A Lens #16- Home (Old&New)

SG- Holland Village at 6:30pm.

 

SG- Prettiest of views from my apartment.

 

SG- Fav Greek food in Asia!

 

SG- And how can you forget xiao long bao (I miss it already!).

 

SG- Potato Head Folk close to Chinatown at night.

 

SG- Inside the chic and stylish Potato Head Folk.

 

SG- Bars, restaurants and cafes outside the Marina Bay Sands.

 

SG- View of the iconic Marina Bay Sands from the Marina Bay Financial Center.

 

SG- Best view of the best little island.

 

SG- And the same view from another angle.

 

SG- A beautiful morning for the saddest goodbye (for 4 months) to my favorite country in the world. See you very soon SG!

 

LA- Morning view from Starbucks.

 

LA- I can get used to these beautiful, deep, blue skies.

 

LA- The cutest little outdoor courtyard in Pasadena.

 

LA- And another view of the cutest and most LA courtyard.

 

LA- The view of LA from our common room window.

 

LA- Super yummy lunch to get my ramen fix!

 

LA- Pretty evening skies from the middle of campus.

 

LA- The picture-perfect view of the LA sunset from right outside my dorm.

 

LA- Sunset drives home.

SG52- The one year countdown

Exactly one week ago from this second, my plane from Haneda, Tokyo landed at Changi airpot in Singapore. ‘Ugh, back to school, back to reality’, was my first thought as the plan cruised down the runway. But as time passed, as I got off the plane to see all the workers in the airport, as we lugged our 9 suitcases into a taxi, as we passed all of the familiar HDB’s, work buildings and malls that had surrounded me for the past 17 years, it hit me like a ton of bricks. In one year from that moment, I wouldn’t be going back to reality or familiarity, but I would be starting a new life. That was an interesting day for me. Not only was that the last time I would return to Singapore from a summer vacation, but it was also National Day as the nation celebrated it’s 51st birthday. While I was dreading the thought of getting back to the 6am grind, there was this weird sense of comfort. That comfort was a feeling I had never felt before. Yes, I feel comfortable back in California with Americans around me who share the same believes as me, and yes I feel comfort when I’m at my lake house in Japan with all of my American friends around me, but this was a different type of comfort. In that 30 minute taxi ride from the airport back to my apartment in downtown Singapore, I realized just how much this beautiful country I get to call home had influenced me and how it will always continue to influence me. It’s the little things that I have been learning to appreciate more. The old Chinese lady at the supermarket who yells the amount I owe at me until all the money is on the table, the taxi driver who doesn’t understand what I’m saying, then takes a wrong turn so I have to go all the way around again, or the smell of the local wet market. All of those things used to bother me or annoy me, but now all I want to do is to be able to be around that for the rest of my life.

It’s weird, the idea of only having one more year left in this little island. And while I am extremely excited to begin my new journey as a college students, there’s a part of me that never wants to leave high school. Not only has this little red dot influenced my life, but my school has shaped me into the person I will be for the rest of my life. Being able to attend a school for 12 years that thrives on diversity and cultural competence has make me as open to new cultures as I could ever be. The teachers who I’ve formed relationships with, who have taught me just as much outside of the classroom as they have in, the friends I’ve made who have come from all of the world and will be by my side for the rest of my life.

So while I look forward to watching Singapore grow another year older, I am also dreading the next national day. This place is my home and will be my sense of comfort for decades to come. I’ll be saying goodbye to this place in one year from now, but I know that won’t be the end. If I’ve learned anything from my 17 years in Singapore, it’s that you never know where you’ll end up. I will be beginning a new adventure, and will have a structure for four years, but after that, who knows where I’ll end up. Singapore, you might just pull me back in!!