#TamingTheTBR – My road to reading freedom

#TamingTheTBR – My road to reading freedom

I love blogging about books. The other day I was talking with some friends about work and the differences between working for yourself and working for a big company. If you work for a big company, you’ve got your steady income and your health insurance. Your job may be a pain in the ass every once in a while, but it works out because you’re living comfortably. There’s nothing wrong with that.

If you work for yourself (specifically in blogging), you’re making little-to-no money. You might have to hustle 200x harder than you were at that company job and you don’t have normal hours like a company person may have.

Continue reading “#TamingTheTBR – My road to reading freedom”

Simone and Her Books Travel to Hawaii

Simone and Her Books Travel to Hawaii

Hey everyone!

Now I know this isn’t a book review, but I just got back from two weeks of Hawaiian bliss with my husband and I wanted to share some of the fun things I saw with you. I hope that’s alright! Sadly, after I wrote this post the volcano we visited in Hawaii erupted causing fissures and threatening the lives of people in Hawaii. It’s a devastating event and I can’t believe we were just there and everything was fine.

Of course I did travel with some books, but that will probably get its own post since I have a lot of thoughts on travel reading.

Continue reading “Simone and Her Books Travel to Hawaii”

Traveling to South Korea – Life Update

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I’m really loving my life updates, so I hope you’ve been loving them too. As you may know, I recently returned from my first trip to Seoul, South Korea. I’m Korean American and I’ve always wanted to travel to Korea to see where my family originally came from. It’s kind of funny that this was my first trip there and that I was there for a wedding for my sister’s friends.

So I went to the land of Psy and “Gangnam Style,” ate authentic Korean BBQ, visited some beautiful temples and palaces, and really felt a sense of belonging. However, I don’t think I would want to live here. It’s a modern city with a lot of technology, but it’s still a little backwards when it comes to things like women’s right to choose and the pollution is awful. But I can see myself visiting a few times in the future.

Maybe it’s because I’m Korean and living in America, but I’ve always struggled with who I am and metaphorically asking myself where my “loyalties lie.” Am I Korean? Am I American? I’ve been so homogenized by American culture and growing up here that I see myself more as American than as Korean. However, I don’t look it. I don’t look like those Baywatch babes with blonde hair, slender body, and classically beautiful features. But I’m American and in this country it’s ok if you don’t. You’re you, but at the same time I’m not me? I wonder if any other race within this diverse nation feels the same way.

This is getting quite philosophical, so I want to clearly say that while I’m an American and love being a citizen of this country, I still wonder what my heritage is and what I stand for and who were these people that I call “my people.” Being second generation born in America, I find myself asking that all the time. How do I maintain being the American I am while keeping true to the people I come from?

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So the opportunity for me to go to Korea came up and I couldn’t turn it down. It wasn’t the best timing to go with me losing my job and moving and getting married and all that, but I couldn’t say no. And you know what I found there?

I found myself detaching. I found myself as an American traveling to another country. I was being scolded for not being Korean enough. People were expecting me to speak fluently even though I came from a country where the dominant language is English. I found myself awkwardly bowing to everyone just to be polite when all was needed was a quick handshake. And even the opposite where I offered my hand only to be greeted with a bow.

I found myself feeling like a person touring the country of her origin, but not feeling original. I felt it when I saw my friend, an expat, speaking better Korean than me. “I’m still working on the dialect and emotion in my voice,” she said to me. But it wasn’t necessary to understand inflection when you can order coffees for everyone without having to switch to English.

And in its own small way, it was disheartening. I found myself wanting to go home and be in the comfort of a language and a people that I was used to. Korea is beautiful and a place where everyone should visit once, but I don’t identify with it as my country. My country is America and I’m proud of that. My country is also Korea and I’m proud of that too. However, Korea is not my home. It is the place that gave me my identity and I will always cherish that. I will always try to return, but as a tourist.

Identity is tough, folks. I don’t think anyone will ever get a good grasp of it. If you’re struggling through identity, not only ethnic identity but also gender identity and religious identity and all the other parts of you that make up who you are, then I can confidently say that you’re not alone. No one ever is. Everyday is a mad grab at finding who you are and doing what needs to be done in order to preserve that journey. It’s hard and it’s easy. But when you explore it and answer some of those questions you have about yourself, I think the one thing you get out of the whole ordeal is comfort.

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Life Update: I’m going to Korea!

Hey folks!

So in the next few weeks, you might not see a lot of updating here re: books. If anything, you’ll see me wandering the streets of Seoul as I head to Korea for two weeks. A friend of my sister’s is getting married and I got to join them on the trip. I’m so excited! I’ve never been to Korea and it’s finally time for this Korean girl to get back to her roots.

I’ll try to post on my regularly scheduled times (Mon, Wed, Fri, if you weren’t aware) and of course I’ll be reading, so I’ll be updating with book thoughts throughout.

If you’re really interested in seeing what I’m up to while I’m in Korea, follow me on Instagram and Twitter! I’m sure I’ll be writing so much more about my trip there. I hope you don’t mind a few blog posts about what I see and do.

Take care!

Simone

Worst Blogger Ever: Life Updates

I know what you’re thinking, “what happened to Simone? I thought she was writing about books or whatever.”

Well, the past month (if not the year so far) has been pretty crazy. Instead of trying to explain everything, I thought I could just give you the highlights reel.

I got married

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Yeah, this one was a doozy and for the most part of 2017, I’ve been spending it getting ready to get married. But now I am and things seem to be on the up and up.

As you can see, no books at the wedding because that’d be weird for me to be reading while I’m pacing around waiting for our turn to get married. It wasn’t the most extravagant wedding in the world, but it made me happy to share my life with my new hubby. 🙂 ❤

I’m going to Seoul

While there isn’t much to prepare (and honestly, I feel like I’m throwing this one in here to make the list longer), I’m super excited and nervous about going to Seoul. I’ll keep you all informed on what happens here, but to give you an idea of my anxiety I’m going to the Motherland and I barely speak the language and there’s this veiled threat of a war with North Korea and I don’t want to end up a refugee yelling “I’M AN AMERICAN CITIZEN” as I run to the American Embassy a la the classic 1997 film “The Saint.”

Obviously I’m being melodramatic right now. I’m really excited about visiting the land of my people. I can’t wait!

I’m moving

My new husband and I are planning to move to New Jersey in a couple of weeks and I’ve just been preparing myself for that. But because my husband is in Florida right now and I’m planning on going to Korea in a couple of weeks, it doesn’t leave a lot of time to review properties and decide what part of New Jersey we want to live. So I’ve just been looking at places, asking a lot of questions, and packing everything up because I think my husband is gonna need to move us without me there :/

I am in the worst reading slump of my life

This is probably the top #1 reason why I’ve been a sucky blogger lately– I am in the worst book slump of my life. There was a time when I was not reading books and that was back in college and the reason why I wasn’t reading books because the books I was reading books required for my classes but didn’t really interest me outside of that.

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Now I’m in a slump again and I’m trying to defunk-ify myself. To give you an idea of how bad it is, I’ve been reading the same YA novel for the past month. The book is amazing and I have a lot I want to talk about it. However, it doesn’t take me a month to read YA! Usually, they take me a couple of days and it’s mostly because how captivated I am by the story. Here, I’m captivated by the story, but for some reason my brain wants to think about other stuff like marriage and moving and career changes (yes, that’s another one to add to the list of stuff happening to me). Also, I’m on a deadline because the library needs my book back by tomorrow and I don’t want to have to pay fees for borrowing books!

So there you have it. A list of excuses on why I can’t blog on a normal schedule. But today is May 1st and that means a new month for me to try and be better about everything I do. Better dieting. Better exercise. Better adulting. I guess I’ll just add better reading on that as well.

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