Monday, November 7, 2011

Happiness Day #20

Gap came out with plaid shirts for women. FINALLY. Granted, there are only four patterns and I only like two of them but it was a great fit, good fabric and good plaid patterns. AND it came to about the same price as an H&M plaid shirt, only with better quality and I could get it from my store. If you want to check them out, just click here.

I also got some of the MAXIMUMHEAT tights that we get around this time of the year. I'm not a fan of buying clothes or clothing that come in packages (e.g.: tights, pajamas, socks) but I thought I'd give it a try and so far, so good.

I know I've been talking about work a lot lately because I've picked up just a few shifts (just a few...I don't even work half as often as I did during first year) and it's pretty much all that's exciting in my life right now. That and it's a two-day reading week for UofT and I didn't get any "reading" done.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Okay, WHAT?!

How did it suddenly get to Sunday night from Wednesday night...I'm sorry blogger world but I too have failed the blog challenge. But it doesn't mean that I won't continue to do it. I suppose I can start up where I left, which would be Day 19!

I'm happy for well-folded clothes and working a shift where I didn't have to interact with a lot of customers and got to clean the store.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Happiness #18

My mom bought me this Ikea blanket. Yes, it's made our of polyester. And yes, it's baby blue, sort of matches my wall but doesn't at the same time (my walls are light blue, but not baby blue). But it was such a thoughtful gesture, it just made me smile.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happiness #17

People who stick around no matter how stupid, clumsy or ridiculous you are make me happy. No matter the arguments, no matter the fights, no matter the sighs of frustration or of disappointment -- they're still around.

Loyalty is definitely something huge but also really small that goes a long way.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happiness #16

I'm going to pretend like it's still Halloween and not almost 1 AM.

Instead of things that I'm happy for (biggest thing today, finally done all my midterms), I'm going to write down a list of things I've always wanted to do or learn how to do or now think about doing...(I know, there are a lot of...different ways of wording it). Just off the top of my head:

  • paint a room 
  • have a "free" wall (to write/paint on)
  • drive stick/manual
  • how to play all the other instruments of a band 
  • knit 
  • use a sewing (thanks Jing!) machine
  • use a DSLR (or learn more about it) 
  • record music
i was starting to get into thinking mode so i thought it'd be best to stop there. i can't quite process things well after midnight sentences get a little funny. sounding. goodnight! 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

CITYouth // One Touch

click it! like it! share it! -- a taste of this summer's CITYouth conference and the videos to come!

PS: there's nothing i love doing more than playing with my worship team mates on the weekend and spending time together. i think i'll make that what i'm happy for today, and just overall on weekends.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Happiness #14

Things to be happy for today: good company & worship

PS: going to go before this post gets negative. my wisdom tooth's gum is currently winning.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Happiness #13

I had a really bad week.

That's all I'm really going to say about it and so, I wasn't at all motivated nor did I even have anything to post last night. I should have and of course could have tried harder to find something, but it just wasn't working, so I skipped yesterday. It so happens as I opened the page to start writing this post, that yesterday was also Day #13 -- not that I believe in those superstitious ideas (my dad was born on the 13th for example and I'm pretty happy about his date of birth), but just for the heck of it I wanted to throw it out there.

What made me happy today or rather, specifically tonight:

Even through the last-minute-ness of Kids' Night and also the lack of response from the kids during the singing (compared to the last three), when we sang "Jesus In My Life" and the rap part came up, there was such a huge response. The kids screamed and understood that they were asked to scream. They sang back the Wo-ahs and I even caught some girls dancing in their seats.

Babies, make me happy. I hope I become a good mom some day.

PS: I made my first baby mistake today and when I say baby mistake, I mean while I was holding one -- I yelled "ATTENTION" really loudly (my voice can get really loud...) when they were starting dinner...while holding a not-yet-one-year-old baby. Needless to say, it was embarrassing and the baby started crying. Luckily, the baby knew who I was and calmed down soon enough but not a great move.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

sterlingstyle: 33 Ways To Stay Creative

sterlingstyle: 33 Ways To Stay Creative: I've been trying to do many of the things on this list to reinvigorate my creativity. I do a lot of 9 and 30. I need to work on the others....

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Happiness #12

In the midst of nodding off, zoning in and out, scribbling down illegible answers to questions about statistics and being in a white hot chocolate coma, I ended up writing, " the scents of...somethingsomething, just love it. Oh, Toronto!"

I found it right as I snapped out of my reverie and drowsiness, flipping through the pages to make sure that I had at least written something down for every question, if not answered. It let me have a good laugh at myself, after a second most terrible day ever that I can remember so far school-wise.

But life is still good.


i wish that time could just stop. stop long enough for me to...

catch up on my hours and hours of sleep,

take pictures and jot down journal entries of memories that just need to be recorded and remembered,

get to know my dslr more since i've abandoned it since its adoption in summer,

not worry about the next midterm or the next assignment, or the readings that i haven't done yet

gather up my thoughts and just process them so they wouldn't be jumped in my mind,

pray, talk to Him, tell Him everything

take a walk, bundled up in fall clothing, breathing in the crisp, autumn air, soaking in the warmth of the sun

have dinner with my family

just have fun with my parents, talk to them


catch up in all of my courses

work and earn more money so i could spend more ...sometimes,

read the books i've wanted to read again this summer

write something, like my novel three years ago

have coffee with a friend and just laugh over silly things

hang out with people i don't get to see very often

... my eyes are fighting against me from last week and the beginning of this week. it's a fight that i know will hurt to keep defending but i have to, or else school is going to kill me. metaphorically.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Happiness #11

I just had something that I wanted to write down...

OH! Okay, this is definitely a materialistic thing but I'm happy that I've started to appreciate feminine things. I grew up as a tomboy, even though I'm really cute and girly in my baby pictures, dressed up in different outfits (boy, did I have the best clothes too!). I like sweatpants, and baggy t-shirts. I got into rap and hip hop in junior high, and I'll leave the rest of that story for some other time.

But somewhere in the midst of high school, I started getting a handle of fashion and style and shopping and clothes and oh, the mysteries of the materialistic world. Point is and the reason for me being happy about that part of me is specifically because I'm happy that I've started to appreciate perfumes and also just finally figuring out what scents I like and what scents I don't like. 

For those who are interested, the two perfumes that I currently own are from Banana Republic (reppin' the company, haha...even though I work for Gap, but they're all under the same big name): 

"Republic of Women"


Honestly I'm not too sure why I like having images so much in my recent posts (this is just the second though) but I think there's something about being able to see things. I'm a visual learner so it probably has a huge affect. 

I remembered this and got inspired to write about perfume when I was walking out of the mall today (twice at different ones) and was handed a perfume card with Calvin Klein's new scent "Forbidden Euphoria" -- which smelled really sweet, but what I liked about it was the tones of citrus coming through. For those who really get to know me, I'm a fan of anything citrus-y, particularly orange but it has to be What drew me to BR's "Wildbloom" was exactly the freshness of the scent and the hints of citrus. Oh, and when I mean citrus, I mean in particular orange, and then there's lemon, and mangos...or no, that last one isn't included. I guess the orange/yellow fruits? I also like how apples smell, which brings me to my list of to-get perfumes...haha. Please bear with my...shallow side. Or not so much shallow but materialistic would be the right word. 

Calvin Klein's "Forbidden Euphoria"
Description: "Forbidden Euphoria is presented as a fragrance for younger audience and dedicated to independent women. The composition is sexy, modern and livelier than the classic, based on the famous orchid tiger note, which is now sweetened by fruity juices.
The top notes will tempt us with iced raspberry, tangerine juices and delicate peach blossom of fruity flowery essences. The heart reveals amazing floral aromas of Tiger orchids, pink peony and jasmine flowers, while the base beats to the cadence of sensual musk, cashmere wood and patchouli."

Marc Jacobs' "Daisy"
I've actually never smelled this one myself but it seems to be a very all-around scent that keeps popping up so I'm putting it on the list 
Description: "Enter the world of Daisy: fresh and feminine, with a playful innocence. At the heart of Daisy is a floral with vintage edge: violet. Sophisticated, with a touch of whimsy, violet captures the eclectic, vintage flavor of Marc Jacobs' feminine, edgy designs. Always elegant, always enchanting - but not too serious - Daisy is a sparkling floral bouquet, spirited and fresh, wrapped in comfort and warmth."

DKNY's "Golden Delicious," "Be Delicious," "Be Delicious Fresh Blossom," and "Red Be Delicious":
I've always loved the shape of these fragrances (they look like apples!) and the scent of the first one, their newest one, is apparently really popular so looking forward to getting a whiff of that.
Description 1: "DKNY's Golden Delicious celebrates luxury and splendor with its rich and accentuated aromas of juicy golden apple, accompanied by orange blossom and Mirabelle plum."
Description 2: "A refreshing scent in an iconic apple-shaped bottle tempts you to take a bite out of life. A sophisticated blend of apples, exotic flowers and woods creates a fresh, juicy scent that can only be called delicious."
Description 3: "A blend of sparkling grapefruit, cassis, and sunkissed apricot meets a blooming floral heart of muguet and rose wrapped in luminous jasmine. Fresh, vibrant, and feminine."
Description 4: "This delicious scent blends a glittering champagne accord with exotic lychee, while red raspberry flirtatiously mingles with crisp apple. A sensual blend of vanilla bean and amber cap off this sultry experience."

Burberry's "Body"
This one gets to go last because the first time I actually smelled it, it reminded me of...very husky, pungent European women perfume smell. But then they were handing out samples downtown some time ago and it smelled really good. So I got the chance to spray some on, on the way out of the mall, and after letting it air out, it's a very...deep smell. I think it'll take some getting used to but am I glad that it didn't smell husky-like anymore! 
Description: "Body Burberry is a luxury chypre - fruity composition that begins with notes of fresh green absinthe, peach and freesia. Roses and iris are in the heart, leaning on the base of sandalwood, cashmerean, musk, amber and vanilla."
The Body Shop's "Dreams Unlimited."
Okay, so I lied. I had JUST remembered this one right when I was done putting the period in on the last sentence. I've been eyeing this one since I overheard a sales rep talk about it to a customer and when I got a sample, I pretty much fell for it. It's a more prominent floral version of BR's "Wildbloom" and perfect for just going out for a day. 
Description: "This exhilarating fragrance features notes of citrus, green chilli, white flowers and cedarwood. It has been created exclusively for The Body Shop by two of the world's leading perfumers."


#endrambling. I just don't want to study. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Happiness #10

I thought I'd do myself a favour and post what made me happy today earlier during the day. If you haven't already noticed, I am a big fan of run-on sentences and also sentences that aren't structurally the best, which incidentally, doesn't help me a lot with my Syntax class (a branch of Linguistics that studies the structure of sentences).

Onto the point! I'm happy that I had taken the time this morning (it really just took me a couple of minutes) to pack a lunch today. Mondays and Wednesdays are the worst for my money spending because I'm on campus from morning to night, which means that I usually need a lunch, some coffee and also a dinner. By bringing a lunch (cauliflower and eggs with some rice, one of my favourite dishes that my mom cooks, plus some tabasco sauce), I saved myself from easily spending somewhere around $10 and under if I got lucky. It makes me really happy when I realize that I saved myself from spending money. For those who know me really well, I'm not exactly the cheap spender or...I guess you could say that I just like shopping but not so much spending money on myself.

Wait, that last part didn't make sense. Anyway...

Hope your Mondays are going well! My morning was quite terrible but I think I can save the depressing story of a extremely slow subway and hard time getting out of bed for another time. aka never.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Happiness #9

I'm so tired. And for that, I am very, very happy that I will be going to sleep soon and that I had a very good nap this afternoon (though I woke up and still felt really tired -- is my body trying to tell me something?)

I'm also happy for good criticism. And from unknown and ridiculous reason, I keep writing as if it's things that I am thankful for, and not really happy about. But I guess you could say that it just makes me happy when people you know are open to critique and also open for suggesting criticism. It helps better you and it helps do things that you may have not thought were okay. So for the songs this morning on Sunday, I was told that I should choose keys that I could sing in and that were comfortable for me. Which, in one way, is kind of selfish but in a musical ...point of view, if the leading vocalist is singing a song that isn't comfortably in their voice range, wouldn't it be distracting and also not good at facilitating worship for the congregation?

While school may not be something for me to be happy about, life and good times with people is something to be happy about.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Happiness #8

So this is now on track, for Saturday, which will become Sunday in two minutes starting now. By the time I finish this, Sunday will have already started.

One minute.

Things that made me super happy today: worship and praising God & getting good sales.

I put it in that order because anything that has to do with leading worship and music and just all of that always goes first. I love it. And though you may not completely understand the real mentality or misinterpret it, I always say that if it were possible, I would do it for a living or my career or just for life. But alas, this world doesn't allow that easily. Tonight at my youth group was just really special and I think there are a couple of things that just did it so well for me tonight:

  • Having a really productive and good practice -- we had a little nicks here and there but there was communication, understanding and time well spent
  • The most random combination of kinds of food for dinner but probably the best dinner too -- fish and chips, chicken, rice, this BBQ'd meat, pork dumplings, etc.
  • Praying together as a group -- I've grown to really love praying with other people; it's just crazy encouraging and helps get things off shoulders
  • A great worship time -- I think that the flow went well tonight from song to song and it was just really refreshing to come back together with the youth after not being together for three weeks. 
Now...getting good sales. I'm not going to give away any numerical values but I will say that on my receipt, I had saved more than I had spent, which really surprised me. A lot of the things that I got were really practical and also final sale but I don't think twice about any of them. Yet. It was a 50% off sale items at Gap today (one of my part-time jobs) and I had made sure to put in some time this morning to stop by and get some stuff. 

And since I'm bored and I like looking at clothes online too (it's a terrible habit of, I mean), here are a few pictures of what I ended up getting:

Ribbed shawl-collar sweater in heather gray

Rayon racerback tank (i actually do have this intense orange colour already) in black (x2)

Knit inset skinny cargo pants in fatigue green (these i can think about...but i've always wanted a pair of green-ish cargo pants; just one of those things)

Ribbon-waist printed skirt in black print

Tie-lapel blazer in river clay

1969 belted denim blazer in light caicos

...there goes my uh. i think we call it narcissism? anyway, at least now all you sort-of noninexistant readers know. ...oh dear. that may not be good. haha. shameless advertising. i considered this my fall shopping spree. AND it was a super great sale. 

talking done. i will be zipping my mouth closed now.


ps: i'm editing the time so it seems like i wrote this on saturday, which i did...when i started writing it but it's just so the day numbers of this challenge don't get confused with the actual days. 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Happiness #7

As you can probably see...I've slacked off so I'm just going to write two separate posts. This one's for Friday (I'm writing it on a Saturday, but...have changed the date/time of the post).

Things that made me happy: a nice conversation with a stranger

When did the world get so cold that talking to each other, just small talk, became strange or too weird to do? Right after I caught my train at Sheppard station heading south to volunteering, I snagged the standing spot by the doors and as I was doing that, I noticed the man who was standing on the other side of the doors look over at me and follow my actions. I had a sneaking suspicion that he was looking at my food (Thai Express) but I shrugged it off. As I was standing there, I then noticed he looked a couple of more times. He wasn't scary looking, though I have to admit I hadn't taken a look at that point yet. Just really tall, wearing a trench coat or something. Finally he looked over again, I could tell this time he was definitely looking at my food (Pad Thai) and finally spoke: "That one's my favourite."

And that was the start of a 10-ish line conversation. He even pulled out the Halloween decorations he had gotten from the dollar store for his nephew (or his kid?).

That totally my morning. That and I worked a shift in the morning that since I haven't been working that often, every time that I go in, I find that I enjoy it more and have a better time. AND I had a great conversation with one of my coworkers, who recently started switching courses to go into Speech Therapy later too! After not working at my store for the entire summer (due to a full-time job position I got), I felt like I had gotten out of the loop with all of my coworkers so it was good to ease back in.

Another great one was the fact that I was shopping around and looking at stuff to buy when my manager told me that tomorrow (or now, today) was going to be 50% off sale items. Can I say booyeah? I suppose I'll have to save that part for the next post, which I will write immediately ... aka now.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Happiness #toolazytocheck

I'm in bed, ready to go to sleep so I will keep this very short:

Being done with these three days makes me very happy. So much that I took the night off from studying for my next two weeks of midterm madness.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Happiness Day #5

I did something good today! Or well it was a good deed and as they say it does make you feel good. But one thing I'd like to stress before I go on is that doing good for others just with the intention of feeling better about yourself isn't enough. In fact, it's pretty temporary and fades off in time. But when you do good for people, and remember that these aren't just people who are homeless and broke or who pretend to be BUT they are children of God, that changes everything. God loves these broken down, wearied, dirty, smelly, shameless people; every single one of them. That was what motivated me to do what I'm about to write.

It could have been that I had written two midterms today and felt pretty good about how I did. I don't think it would have been because I had gone to bed at 5 in the morning and woken up 5 hours later (thus also skipping my morning class to study some more). But the point is...something inside me was telling me something. This happened just as I crossed College street to get to the Tim Hortons on the other side.  I was going to congratulate myself  and pre-celebrate with a French Vanilla, which is sitting in front of me at this moment in my subway seat. Right as I crossed over and lifted my head to make sure I was heading in the right direction, I noticed the old, bearded man squatting right beside the stairs leading down to Tim Hortons. He held a large coffee cup to collect change and, though I only noticed later, smoking the last bit of his cigarette.

That something that I had mentioned earlier? That was when it poked me. Mentally, inwardly, spiritually - however you want to call it. I stood in line then, suddenly thinking about what would be the most ideal thing to get this man. Was he hungry? Was he thirsty? Should I just get him a regular coffee or would that. E a bad choice since coffee's a diuretic and would only make him more thirsty? What about a donut? Did they have any Honey ones left? My head was brimming excitedly about my soon-to-be good deed and what comforted me was that it wasn't "me" caring about him but God's love speaking to me. About this homeless guy, smoking a cigarette, squatting outside like it was just the thing he wanted to do.

I ended up doing what seemed most simple and easiest at that time - I ordered a box of 10 timbits. Mixed. My drink in hand and the box in the other, i made my way up the stairs and towards his spot. There was too little time for my mind to get all excited again about how I was going to proceed so the rest of the story went a little something like this:

- Here you go!
- Oh! *coughing and immediatelysnuffinghiscigarettebutt* Dear! *still coughing* Thank you!
- Alright, take care. You have a good night!

I give him a wide smile, turn and walk down the stairs.

I guess you could say that I wished that I had spoken to him longer or maybe at least introduced myself and gotten his name. Then I could carry the conversation and tell him that God had nudged me to get those timbits. Bu I didn't, and in a strange way, I'm happy that I didn't. It was a step that I am so happy that I took. A risk to reach out to one person in need because I followed His leading. When you follow His lead, you can be sure that he won't lead you astray.

What follows after this may be a little unfortunate. As I got around the corner of the stairs, I saw yet another man at the end of the hallway. He was holding a sign, on which he had written words that I don remember (but along the similar idea of needs). I remember waking towards him, still feeling good about my deed, with my hot drink in hand and my spirit just falling because I wasn't able to help him as well. That and also I could have easily offered to give him my French Vanilla but that I didn't.

All in all, there are people out there who have the guts after losing whatever they'd lost to sit at corners and ask for change. I admit I look past them almost all of the time (if not all). We can have hearts to give and the willing spirits but the reality of this world is that there are A LOT of people in need. It's hard to care for each one. One of my prayers tonight would be for those resting in the TTC hallways and corners of downtown, that they would find rest in Jesus one day. I hope the man with the timbits could be encouraged by his tiny box. And even if he isn't, I know that I did my part.

Upside: God's pretty cool. I had two midterms today that I feel pretty good about (that's seriously a first do I'm really glad, as sad as that is) and now ...

Edit: I'm now at home so no longer on the subway

... I need to focus again and start my essay. Wish me luck! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Happiness Day #4

I will quote John in saying, "I'll need to keep this short and sweet" because I really should study. 

I am happy that I have people to turn to who don't find my whining/complaining-about-midterms and not-wanting-to-study annoying. You don't get much better than that. I'm currently trying to study for my music midterm, and then I will try to start an outline for my essay. Then after my midterm tomorrow will be the studying for my linguistics midterm. 

I'm also happy for mojito (mint) tea that's actually been keeping me awake (or maybe it's all in my head) and for my newly adopted dining room table-turned-study room for me. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Happiness Day #3

It's 12:05am as I begin writing this blog post and I haven't started studying yet tonight. To be fair, as soon as I got home three hours ago, I was on the phone and texting with a couple of different people regarding something that needed help and also advice. I ended up calling one of those people with whom I was communicating and just shared some of my thoughts with them and also prayed with them.

If there's anything I am thankful for, it's the ability to just invite young people into prayer and hear them pray out loud with me. There's so much encouragement in the voice of a young person, talking to God and being a part of that conversation. I think another factor would be that young people have started to shy away from the idea of praying out loud. When I was a little seventh grader, I would jump at opportunities to read out my favourite stanza of a hymn or of a song or get really flustered over something that I really wanted to say out loud in prayer. Nowadays, it's just a handful of people who really jump.

So I'm thankful for opportunities to be in prayer and conversation with God, with other young people. It helps me feel like I'm actually doing something right -- most of all, not for my benefit but for His.

The other thing that made me happy (I've realized that I start with this mentality about what am I thankful for? when it's really a Happiness Challenge, not necessarily a Thanksgiving Challenge though they kind of go hand-in-hand) was how my day went today, specifically regarding my stats course. I've been feeling really discouraged by this course because it's one of my potential Master's requirements and so, I decided to take it this semester. I didn't take data back in high school but I had read that you didn't really need to in order to do well in this course. But oh, dear God, it's like my biology course all over again. What I mean is that I'm not motivated to do the readings or work (though I do have a small motivation because I really want to do my Masters) and it's really challenging for me to grasp the idea or concepts of statistics. I expressed my frustrations out briefly to one of my best friends and also classmates in this course and it just bugged me how incapable I was of pushing myself to do better. I've always been told "You have potential, Silvia" ...yeah, that's great; just how do get to using it.

Anyway, bitterness aside! I hadn't done all of the readings or homework for this week (we missed a class because of Thanksgiving) and so I was a little nervous for the weekly quiz we do in our tutorials. But God was really merciful and my TA ended up giving us the formula, and the quiz was based on a concept in the chapter that I actually read and understood ... all you really had to do after that was input numbers, calculate some sums and do some division and voila, 0.86 was the answer!

Oh, the simple things that make me happy. On a side note, I brought my school friend to Future's Bakery before our linguistics class at night, where we had breakfast for dinner. I got the Super Omelette again and finished it all this time! Even the toast! I was that hungry.

Now, onto studying. Or maybe I should go to sleep so I have a good night of rest before a full day of studying. Hmm....

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Happiness Day #2

To be honest, I wasn't thinking so much about what would stand out as happy moments or things during my day today and usually when that happens, I'm forced to reflect upon my day and really think about what moments during the day were happy moments (and the rest are usually either neutral or unhappy). So, here's my list of things that made me happy today (yes, I do lists most of the helps me organize my thoughts since I usually write on the whim):

  • A really, really dear sister came back home to visit for the weekend and I didn't realize how much I missed her until she was here. And really, it wasn't even a imissyouineedtotalktoyouabouteverything kind of miss, it was just a heartfelt, mutual miss. She'd turned to me at the end of our lunch together (as a group with several other people) and just said, "I really miss you Silv." And to be completely honest, I think that really struck me hard because most of the time these days, I run around my life and about my day thinking that I'm not that important (being one student out of thousands of thousands at UofT kind of reinforces that feeling) and that even my close friends don't really miss me the way I miss them. It was just really good to see her and even if the lunch was as a group, just being with her and hearing her laugh, watching her zone out, listening to her stories and being part of her visit back home was great. 
  • Despite not getting a ton of studying in and not even that much sleep, I got a ride to my best guy friend's parents' house for his surprise birthday party and as I stepped into the house (which was ironically really close to the elementary school that I attended and also where I met this guy friend), I was greeted by these old high school classmates. Now, here's the whole point of this...ramble, these were people in high school who I didn't really hang out with...they were a group of friends, I knew them, I could say I was friends with them, but biggest connection to them (so I felt upon entering) was that I was friends with the guy friend and that we all went to the same high school. As the night went on though, it was just nice to shed off all of the old high school clique feelings and just hang out with these people. You know? To not have my titles as Yearbook Editor or Head of the prom committee over my head, chasing them down for their deposits or their grad messages -- instead just as their friend and old classmate. And it was nice to do something nice back to my guy friend, who'd surprised me in person on my birthday. Thought it was fair. 
Right now...I am still in the "dining room" with my stuff sprawled out on the table, typing this blog post away. I told myself that if I was going to get through at least one of the three challenges that I had set myself up for, I would have to really try. Oh, the joys of life, not that this isn't joyous. It's just that while the rest of my family is in bed now, I am still up studying. #studentlife

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Happiness Challenge -- Day #1

Things that made me happy today (in the subtle way):

  1. I'm a little bit "OCD" when it comes to organizing and planning events -- it's something that I absolutely love and enjoy doing but it's also one of my biggest weaknesses because I allow it to consume me and very often, stress me out. So for the last week, I've been the contact person for the young people's outing we had tonight: my responsibility was to gather what times the young people could be at the hall, hand them over to Ian and have him arrange the rides. Up to this morning, I was still updating Ian with young people jumping in last minute and even confirming ride times. But even when I'm stressing out about something (that I usually put myself in to being with) and I feel like nobody cares, I know that God is bigger than I could ever be and that it all, one way or another, works out just fine. There were about 80-90 people in total at Carol and Mark's tonight and I even had to admit that within the first five minutes of stepping into the garage, I was a little bit scared of how many people had actually all come together for our outing. It just warmed my heart that young people could gather together outside of church, play pool, sit around, talk, eat dinner, roast marshmallows, withstand campfire heat and smell and smoke and be in each other's presence. 
  2. I led some singing/worship time tonight playing acoustic guitar! Granted, it was completely acoustic -- no mics, no sound system, no amps, nothing. Just our voices and two acoustic guitars. It just so happened that none of the regular guitarists could make it tonight so I did what I could do best, which was to take the opportunity and use what little chords I knew and led some singing time. We ended up not having enough time for some sharing or any mini-message but I feel like God could still speak through the three songs that we sung -- and there's just something about being a worship leader and hearing tens of voices singing along with you, praising God for how much He loves us ...that blows me away each and every time. It never gets old. 
  3. I studied today! So I only understood one chapter of Stats and gave up on the other two BUT I started making notes for my phonetics midterm and was even enjoying myself, while listening to Taylor Swift. (PS: I really like her Speak Now album ... I wasn't such a big fan before but this album really sings to me) 
I wasn't feeling so positive during the day but writing this out made me realize that despite feeling completely worn out and drained right now, it was a pretty great day. How was your Saturday? 

let's try this!

after hearing about the “Happiness Challenge” from some good friends over at Lighthouse (college campus gathering) as well as newly following some people here on Tumblr, i’m going to take on both challenges and see how well i do: 
  1. Happiness Challenge: write about something that made you happy every day for the next 30 days (they started mid-October, so i figured it’s out for me to start now as well)
  2. Exercise Challenge: exercise for at least 20 minutes every day (this is my personal challenge)…so right now, I just did 1.3 miles on the treadmill; combination of walking/jogging/running to start my day off. 
  3. Bible Challenge: read at least a chapter (any chapter) a day
i hope that…these two will, by the end, help me feel healthier and more active during the day and a little bit happier overall. 
edit: i added the Bible one last minute…could use a little more of God every day! fo’ sho. 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

personality test

got this personality test from Elaine at clothedmuch and thought i'd give it a try. there's things with answering 40 questions and how they're able to get all of this information based on those answers that...i don't really know how to react but it was a fun ten minutes and interesting read nonetheless.



You appreciate art, beauty, and design; you know that they are not superficial but absolutely crucial to living the good life. You have good taste, and you're proud of it. Those with a high score on the "aesthetic" trait are often employed in literary or artistic professions, enjoy domestic activities — doing things around the house — and are enthusiastic about the arts, reading, and travel.
You don't think it's pretentious to be moved by art and beauty. You're not one of those who believe it doesn't matter what something looks like as long as it does its job.


You would rather hang out with others than spend time alone, and you'd far rather be doing something with your friends than just sitting around. You're happy in a crowded room, club, stadium, or auditorium.
You're not a private person who is ill at ease in a group; you don't view excessive socializing as a waste of time.


You behave in a confident and forceful manner, take charge of the situation, raise your hand in class, stand up for what you think is right, and lead others. Among those who have a high score on the "assertive" trait, many have jobs in which they are valued for their organizational skills as well as their talent for supervising others.
You are not interested in fading into the woodwork, leaving everything to fate, taking more time than necessary to accomplish a task, or avoiding confrontation.


You're comfortable expressing yourself in words and actions, with no self-censorship. You believe that if someone doesn't like what they see it's not your problem, but theirs. A high score on the "accessible" trait suggests that you have a lot of friends, socialize often, and enjoy rap/hip-hop music.
You don't see the need to keep your thoughts to yourself, or to have a zone of privacy that encompasses only yourself and a small circle of friends and relatives.


You tend to feel at home wherever you find yourself, even in unfamiliar settings, with new people. It takes a lot to rattle you, and when rattled you recover quickly and gracefully.
You are usually not self-conscious or nervous when you're in an unfamiliar environment or with people you don't know.


You have a genuine interest in other people. You're a natural host, and are always thinking about how you can increase the happiness of those around you. When friends have problems or are in trouble, you're usually the first person they turn to for aid and comfort. Scoring high on the "warm" trait suggests that you are among those who enjoy domestic activities — doing things around the house — and are enthusiastic about charitable work, helping others, and making the world a better place.
You don't always say exactly what you're thinking; you don't like the idea of causing anyone pain because of your criticism.


You are willing to take the time to find out what's going on with other people, especially if they're in distress. You're a good listener, you don't criticize, and you offer unbiased, respectful, honest advice when it's requested. With a high score on the "understanding" trait, it is likely that you are enthusiastic about charitable work, helping others, and making the world a better place.
You don't feel the need to impose your standards on others or say things that, even though true, cause pain.


You are gentle with others, both physically and emotionally. You are careful not to upset people and go out of your way to find the nicest way to say something. You naturally focus on the fact that the world is full of wonderful people, places, and things. More often than not, people with a high score on the "tender" trait enjoy spending time with children, love romantic movies, and are enthusiastic about making the world a better place.
You don't think of yourself as tough-minded or gruff, nor do you need to be seen as some kind of objective source of truth and rationality.


You are in touch with your own feelings, which helps put you in touch with the feelings of others.
You don't buy the logic that your happiness comes ahead of everyone else's because unless you're happy you're incapable of making anyone else happy.


You feel it's important to work according to a plan and finish every task, to do things correctly and thoroughly.
You are not the kind of person who abandons a project before finishing it, or slacks off when you've lost interest.

the "traits"

the "factors"

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 11 - A picture of something you hate.

these are the worst critters for me. i cannot go to sleep if i see one in my room. and i also refuse to kill them myself, unless of course…they’re really puny and i have shoes on or something like that. i also chose not to put a real-life picture of one but rather, just a cartoon about how to draw one. that’s much better. 

Day 10 - A picture of the person you do the most messed up things with.

unfortunately, i don’t really have a picture or a person for this one…the things that i do aren’t really “messed up.” sorry to disappoint you tumblrers! my life consists of sleeping, eating, working at Gap, volunteering at the hospital, practicing piano, listening to music, streaming tv shows and movies online, and occasionally eating out. and i do that with a fair number of people :) 

Day 09 - A picture of the person who has gotten you through the most.

for reals. i know that we haven’t really been friends for the longest time (thoughtechnically we’re childhood friends), but shrink is definitely the person who has gotten me through the most.

see our joint tumblr here

Day 08 - A picture that makes you laugh.

penguins —for some strange reason— have the ability to make me squeal and laugh and giggle and smile all at once. really. just penguins. people are like that too, but there’s a thing with penguins. maybe it’s because i don’t actually have a relationship with them. and here’s the other thing: this day 8’s title caption was simply “a picture that makes you laugh,” and not, may i add, “a picture of a person who makes you laugh.” thank goodness. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Day 07 - A picture of your most treasured item.

i have a lot of treasured items. two of which, i wear with me almost all of the time. i admit, sometimes, just because of wearing them all of the time, i feel a little bare without them but that’s alright. besides the two in this picture, i also have my pianos. i find that i treasure a lot of my items because i also link them to the people behind the item’s story. also…i’m just a junkie when it comes to stuff like that. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Day 06 - A picture of a person you’d love to trade places with for a day.

this is brooke fraser. i didn’t think too long before i chose her, because i didn’t want to be behind this 30-day challenge by two things and then three. but i think one really important reason why i would love to trade places with her is to know what the music industry is like in her life, and how it feels to live a life of a musician and just to be surrounded by music. that and how it is to be in sydney, australia (when she is there) and to lead worship with the rest of the hillsong leaders. that would really be a cool day for me.

Day 05 - A picture of your favorite memory.

this seems silly, especially since you guys don’t have a clue about what this picture is about. but this was almost two years ago, right before the car ride home to toronto from ann arbor, michigan where i had just spent a week for a church event called Gospel Odyssey. it also marks the end of my summer of participating in ALL the summer events and just a lot of things happened that summer: God directed me into what i should do in the future (speech pathology), i hit one of my bottoms spiritually just for Him and many others to bring me back up, i managed to score a ride to this camp in time to surprise my best friend (Rachel, see our joint tumblr) for her birthday and many other things. it was a very, very good summer. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Day 04 - A picture of your favorite night.

i know the picture isn’t clear, but this was almost three summers ago now. or is it the second summer. i know it’s dark and that’s actually how i would prefer it for posting things online. these are a group of girls that just…changed my summer and my bonds and relationships with them completely from this one night. we made human pyramids, did gymnastic mounts, stuck our feet in the swimming pool and pigged out on food before and after we went outside. we prayed in the middle of the backyard, in the middle of the night for each other and for Jesus to be our first Love again. i love all of these sisters so much, these beautiful, beautiful women. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day 03 - A picture of the cast from your favorite show.

so i’m sorry if this is about an hour and a half late, i got so caught up in being tired that i didn’t realize it would only take me a couple of minutes to let you all know what my favoure cast is. now, i’m stuck in between two so i'm putting the second one here on blogger and the first one on my tumblr so you can have a look. and yes, i am simply copying and pasting the same 30 day challenge in both. i just thought i’d try to use my other networking sites rather than do it on facebook.  but onto the (other) favourite cast….

THE BIG BANG THEORY! so this is a fairly recent tv show that joined me in my life. as in during this first year of university that just passed by so quickly. at first, i was a little hesistant because i'm a little picky with tv shows. especially now that most of the girls that i know are watching korean dramas and i refuse to get sucked into the world of asian dramas again. yes, again (it was in ninth grade for me). but here it is! i definitely think sheldon is a big reason why i enjoy it so much, that and just the constant bantering between these characters. it's hilarious, it's nerdy, it's funny in a nerdy way and just a good 20 minutes spent for a tv show. mind you, i don't agree with the sleeping around but that's hard not to find nowadays in tv shows. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Day 02 - A picture of you and the person you have been close with for the longest.

this is shrink and i. and by shrink, it’s our nickname(s) for each other. i know the description of the day says “the person you have been close with for the longest” and i think that applies with us. even if we’ve only been each other’s best friends for four years this summer. or even if we’ve actually known each other as children in church. we’ve come a long way and that means a lot. heck, she means a lot to me. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Day 1 - A picture of yourself with fifteen facts.

  1. the dress above is my only pink item of clothing in my closet. i recently purchased a couple of coral-like tops but nothing actually pink. luckily, the print makes it so the pink’s not too flashy for me. 
  2. i speak english and french fluently (though the latter not as good as the former now after one year of university), understand and speak a little bit of mandarin and can understand/speak very basic spanish
  3. i’m a tad bit OCD when it comes to organizing papers and files, as well as planning events and taking on anything that has to do with logistics and planning 
  4. i got my first upright piano at the age of one for my birthday, and then my second one before i turned twelve
  5. music has grounded me for my entire life 
  6. i was a little, rebel church-goer before i finally came to love Christ on my own in grade seven
  7. my phone is a blackberry
  8. i can be an emotional roller coaster
  9. i really adore penguins. especially fluffy, furry, baby penguins
  10. i have default answers for certain stereotype questions: for example, my favourite colour is green (but i also like red and black, and blue), or my favourite food is chicken wings (but burritos are so good too)
  11. if i had all the money to spend in the world, i would have a crazy collection of things and hobbies: photography, longboard, rock climbing, grand piano, art studio, basketball, swimming, race car, library, scarves, tea, etc. 
  12. i like making lists
  13. silvia + too much free time = not good // in other words, i like to be kept busy
  14. my full name is silvia shilei (“shi” is from the word poet, “lei” from flower bulb) li
  15. if i could do it for the rest of my life, i would lead worship.  

The 30 Day Challenge!

I was debating whether to do this on Facebook or not and then I thought, heck, why don’t I just do it on Tumblr and/or Blogger? Facebook just seems way too open to me — don’t ask why I feel that way. 

Here’s the outline of the next 30 days!

Day 01 - A picture of yourself with fifteen facts.
Day 02 - A picture of you and the person you have been close with for the longest.
Day 03 - A picture of the cast from your favorite show.
Day 04 - A picture of your favorite night.
Day 05 - A picture of your favorite memory.
Day 06 - A picture of a person you’d love to trade places with for a day.
Day 07 - A picture of your most treasured item.
Day 08 - A picture that makes you laugh.
Day 09 - A picture of the person who has gotten you through the most.
Day 10 - A picture of the person you do the most messed up things with.
Day 11 - A picture of something you hate.
Day 12 - A picture of something you love.
Day 13 - A picture of your favorite band or artist.
Day 14 - A picture of someone you could never imagine your life without.
Day 15 - A picture of something you want to do before you die.
Day 16 - A picture of someone who inspires you.
Day 17 - A picture of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently.
Day 18 - A picture of your biggest insecurity.
Day 19 - A picture of you when you were little.
Day 20 - A picture of somewhere you’d love to travel.
Day 21 - A picture of something you wish you could forget.
Day 22 - A picture of something you wish you were better at.
Day 23 - A picture of your favorite book.
Day 24 - A picture of something you wish you could change.
Day 25 - A picture of your day.
Day 26 - A picture of something that means a lot to you.
Day 27 - A picture of yourself and a family member.
Day 28 - A picture of something you’re afraid of.
Day 29 - A picture that can always make you smile.
Day 30 - A picture of someone you miss.


the one on the left is "Mademoiselle" and the one on the right is "Limo-Scene"

who knew i'd be telling a nail polish story. anyhoo, here goes nothing: about a year ago, i spotted the Limo-Scene nail polish in shoppers, inevitably and picked it up. it became my favourite nail polish. which means a lot considering i didn't even really like wearing nail polish before. it's an off-white/pink colour that thickens and looks more white-like after two coats. i recently (as in just a couple of hours ago) purchased Mademoiselle with a friend of mine at trade secrets, and really like it! i have it on my left hand right now, yes only my left hand and it's a clear, light pink colour. the pink is very subtle which is perfect for me because i'm not a pink kind of girl.

anyway! here goes to collecting nail polish. good ones at least. i have a knack for picking up things, such as clothes and even random things like nail polish, that aren't crazy good quality and they just lie around, waiting until the lucky day where i might pick them up and actually wear/use them.

la mademoiselle vous souhaite une bonne nuit!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

humidity forecast

attention all torontonians, this is a humidity warning. which basically means that right after these three days of crazy sunshine and hot, sticky, humid air outside, it's going to pour like it's never poured before on this city.

but that's ok. we'll enjoy the sun for now!

here's one of my favourite videos of all time. reasons are as follows:

  1. penguin
  2. penguin
  3. penguin's laugh when getting tickled

Sunday, May 29, 2011

torn in two

between reality and what we want

we grow up at different times in our lives
we put different things in front of us
we love different kinds of people
we make our hearts ache
hurt, scream for attention
for love

i have no clue what i'm saying. here's to tonight.

Day 2: UFC fights and growing up

ever since i started joining a group of people from my church, once a month, gathering together to watch the UFC fights, i learned a couple of things:

  • some guys do know the sailor moon theme song by heart, or at least the first two lines, while others may be interested in hearing about nail polish application as it actually relates to painting walls
  • the worst UFC fight was definitely during UFC129...that blood tumour was just plain bad. and there was a whole lot of blood
  • having wings, even if they're the ones you pop into the oven for fifteen minutes, while watching a fight is definitely essential. that and probably the beers that the legal adults can have that i can't just yet and the pop that i do get to have 
  • veggies and dip = healthy and delicious and good munchies
  • don't exclaim or laugh out loud by yourself...wait until everybody else is booing or making sounds because of something that happened during the fight 
  • make sure you tell your parents that you're going to be home late. and that it's because you're watching people fight each other. 
...okay, so those were particularly interesting, but i thought i'd try to write something interesting out of having watched the UFC fights.

as for the "growing up" part of my entry title, i don't know why this is starting up again for me. maybe it's because of certain things just happening one after another, closely together. maybe it's because of my protective, jealous, stubborn yet really loving (and i don't say that to boast, but because i just know it's filled with too much love) heart. or maybe it's because i'm just...growing up. but here goes:

do your own thing. figure out what it you need to do. nobody's there to hold you back. God's got your back. you've got a life to live. 

i know that's vague and all, but...i really can't justify any of it when it's all that inspirational quotes can give you. granted, those came from my own mind just moments ago but it does apply to me. and you. and who else. 

"you have potential"

Friday, May 27, 2011

the summer days of blog posting

i have officially slacked off way too much on everything. everything being multiple things, not everything. those multiple things would include:

  • reading: i'm currently reading This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen...and i may start working on another book after that. maybe a classic. or maybe A Great and Terrible Beauty. that's close enough to being a classic
  • exercising: this is a little harder. the last time i had the will to go run on the treadmill, i found out that some kid(s) had broken it. but the mommabird informed me before my vacation trip that it had been repaired. probably by my dad. anyhoo, while i was in the outer banks, i ran beside the beach, with the waves lapping at my feet as they came to and fro. barefoot too! which meant that my calves got worked out like crazy, which explained why i couldn't walk up or down the stairs properly for the three days that i ran. or jogged. or jog/walk i mean. 
  • blogging: this kind of goes along with journalling. i used to journal a lot and now i don't. i barely do. i rarely do. and when xanga was still popular, i blogged there a lot. but to be fair, that was also when i was a distraught, emotional teenager (like i'm still not one, right) going through stupid things like high school and teenage angst. i'm a lot more blunt and cynical...and probably sarcastic and narcissistic and mean than i used to be, but i'm still sweet. i think. i hope. 
pause: the sisters that are in the sister meeting downstairs in my kitchen just tried to sing in rounds for this one song...and it just didn't work. my musically-trained ears hurt a tad bit. 
  • journalling: this may be tied to the fact that i'm a little picky about my journals. while i was growing up as a child into a teenager, my parents (one or the other) would be the ones buying my journals. and i don't know how they did it, but they always picked the right ones. now that i'm older and i don't really ask them to buy my a journal anymore, the task is a little harder than i deemed it to be. then again, buying notebooks and any kind of writing utensils or materials isn't exactly the best activity for my decision-making abilities.
  • baking: i really, really like baking. there's something about the way the ingredients need to be prepared and measured carefully, and mixed together (i don't know about the readers who actually follow this blog, but i grew up watching my mom use chopsticks to mix together the cake mix so i've decided that chopsticks > mixer -- that, and i don't really like our mixer). and then you pop it into the oven and just wait. what really gets me about baking is just watching how the cupcakes/cakes/muffins/cookies rise up and turn into sugary goodness. i once sat in front of the oven just to watch the batter rise. no joke.
  • doing my own laundry: i know this must sound silly but ever since i graduated from high school, i've talked (or maybe joked) about doing my own laundry. in my family, we throw all of our dirty clothes together into two baskets -- dark and light. and then it's up to my mom to do the rest. when it's summertime, i usually help by hanging the clothes outside on the clothesline (we don't have a dryer) and then taking them down once they've dried and doing the folding. it's one of the chores that i believe i actually wouldn't mind doing. i take that as a good sign. but yes! the reason my mom and i use for why i don't do my own laundry yet? i don't have my own laundry bin/basket. but that's...not really valid. 
  • creating: ...this one's a tough one. i guess what i mean is actually keeping myself busy with making things. like that scrapbook shrink (she's my best friend and sister -- we'll go by the nickname for now) and i have always thought of. or making friendship bracelets for everybody i know. or even taking a photography class or maybe an art class. i recently learned how to make hemp bracelets, which are a little more casual and less flashy than friendship bracelets in my opinion, so those would work! 
i'm going to stop there because i feel like i'm just talking about things that i do rather than things i would like to do. or i'd start talking that way at least. but yes. here's to the goal i will set for myself. i will either journal or blog every day from now to the end of summer. i feel like if i get into enough of a routine out of it, maybe my mind wouldn't be junked up with things that fly around in it. and maybe then, i can start being literate again. haha. i make myself laugh. there is actually a lot i could talk about...but here's to the end of this entry!