Monday, December 30, 2013

PART THREE OF FOUR: LIFE IN LETTERS

Like, three months ago, my fabulous friend Kate tagged me to do Alex Day's Life in Letters tag, in which I give you a little insight about my life through letters. Let us begin.

A- Adventures. I would try anything once. I like getting out of my comfort zone (sometimes) and I like pushing my boundaries. I like adventures, whether it's going skydiving or living abroad alone for a year, because it makes me feel alive.

B- Ballet. When I was still in the Philippines, dance in general was a huge huge part of my life. I still remember coming home from my very first ballet class and not being able to stop doing pliés and tendus. I would wear my ballet shoes around the house all day, and whenever my cousin (who was my best friend too) came over I would force teach her to do ballet. I was so elated when I got the news that I could finally dance en pointe, and it's the very first time I remember being so, incredibly happy. Like, comparable-to-when-I-was-in-Rome happy. Unfortunately due to... circumstances in general, I had to stop dancing when I moved from the Philippines. It was, and still is, heartbreaking, and if I get the chance to dance again I would gladly take it.

C- Content, in both meanings of the word. Although I may not be the most patient or persevering of all people, I do like creating stuff, is which why I have a blog. I get super excited at the thought of carrying out projects, whether it be writing, or doing a programme or a course, or something else entirely. As well as that I am also content, in that I am happy with my life at the moment.

D- Danielle Joyce Manimtim Olavario, which is my full name. Legally, like in my birth certificate, my name is actually only Danielle Manimtim Olavario, but I grew up with the Joyce stuck in because of my grandmother (or the priest, it's confusing), and for the first twelve years of my life people called me "DJ" because Danielle Joyce. It was only until I applied for a visa to go to Ireland that I found out I didn't have the Joyce. "D" isn't as catchy.

E- Enthusiastic. I get so interested over everything it's ridiculous. The nurse that was my supervisor when I was doing my work experience in a hospital actually described me as "over-enthusiastic," in that I get so invested on everything and anything at all. This is why I'm part of fandoms.

F- Friends, because I have the best group of friends anyone could ask for. They're witty and intelligent, they never fail to make me laugh and I know they have my back whenever I need some support. We also have, like, no drama at all and I like it that way.

G- Green. I am a Slytherin. Hiss Hiss.

H- Harry Potter changed my life, and that's not in any way an exaggeration. The series opened me up to a world of books that I never explored before. I was a reader before Harry Potter but the books just sort of opened the floodgates for me. It also introduced me to a community of people who I never would've met if it wasn't for JK Rowling, and like many others I felt a sense of belonging and acceptance in this community that I never really felt with any sort of cliques before. It's hard to believe that the last movie instalment came out more or less three years ago, because in my heart as well as in the hearts of so many others whose lives were impacted by these books, Harry Potter lives.

I- Ireland, which I see as my adoptive mother while the Philippines is my birth mother. I love them both.

J- Jealousy. This quote from Othello explains it all for me:
"Oh, curse of marriage
That we can call these delicate creatures ours
And not their appetites! I had rather be a toad
And live upon the vapor of a dungeon
Than keep a corner in the thing I love
For others' uses."

K- Kissing.

L- Learning. I am enthusiastic for virtually anything, I'd get super excited over the colour gray if I was given the chance. So even if I do complain about school and workload a lot of the time, I admit that I do enjoy school and learning about new things that I never knew before. I like it, that's all.

M- Medicine. At the moment, I'm looking to be a doctor, a neurologist maybe. I've done my research about this job and I'm almost certain that this is what I want to do in my life. I realise that I may still be too young for decision and that things change, but it doesn't hurt to have a goal. And right now this is what I'm aiming towards.

N- Nerdfighteria is a community cultivated by the Vlogbrothers of youtube. It is a community that helped me grow as a person, and, growing up in a very one-sided family and community, it has taught me that I could form my own opinions and make my own choices, and I don't have to follow the path has been laid before me. I owe nerdfighteria so much, I learned everything from feminism, to learning about the French Revolution, to probabilty, to killing-baby-Hitler-if-I-had-a-choice. I became a nerdfighter in 2011 and haven't looked back since.

O- Odd, which I seem to be sometimes. Even to myself.

P- Philippines, where I was born and raised. We migrated to Ireland when I was twelve and it was probably the hardest thing I ever had to do as a child. To me it also signified the end of my childhood. I know twelve is such a young age to say that but migrating forced me to grow up faster than I guess I should have. At twelve I was better educated than my parents and so I had to take charge when it came to paperworks. I had to count on myself to adjust to the new environment I was put in because nobody else was going to do it for me. But I digress. I do miss the Philippines and I feel a bit ashamed to admit that I am more aware and better informed of the western society's cultures and traditions that I am of my home country. It's something that I would perhaps work on changing in the next year.

Q- Queen, which is what I am. Obviously.

R- Rome. Ever since I visited the city on a school tour last May, I've never stopped thinking about. The map of the city is stuck in my wall, I have the Trevi Fountain as my laptop's wallpaper, and almost everything I see reminds of its beauty (today I bought a dress because I thought it reminded me of Rome). I fell in love with the city, and I hope to one day reside there, maybe.

S- Solitude. Although I do enjoy social gatherings from time to time, I also need a bit of a moment by myself or just by my closest friends. Even though I've gotten quite better at it over the past two years, socialising still tires me, right now, I would still prefer to be in my pajamas and watch an episode of Doctor Who than interact people all night.

T- Travelling. As you can probably tell I love visiting new places and meeting new people and trying different sorts of food. Travelling makes me feel like I'm going on an adventure (see "A" above) and to me looking at something that I've never seen the likes of before is very exhilarating.

U- UGH, which is what I feel like most of the time.

V- Veronica, which is the name of my choir teacher and voice lessons coach. A lot of people find her unbearable but she has made such a huge impact in my life and I actually admire her perseverance and resourcefulness and ambitions and general Slytherin-ess. She is my model Slytherin.

W- Winter is my favourite season, which I guess is kinda weird because I was born in a country where winter did not exist. But I love it. I love the snow, and the smell of smoke, and the hot chocolate in front of the fire. I prefer being cold than being hot. But other than that I love winter because it's a time for taking things slow. It's a time for rest, as summer is a time for being busy. It is silence and peace, and rest. And not cleaning your room because spring cleaning is a thing.

X- X THE LETTER, FOR BEING SO DIFFICULT.

Y- Youtube, along with Harry Potter, shaped my life in so many ways. I became open to new ideas that I don't think I would have encountered otherwise.

Z- ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz. Because I like sleeping. And naps. And I could these things literally anywhere and everywhere. You can ask my friends, I am the best napper in the world.

P.S. I TAG MY FRIEND BRONAGH TO DO THIS.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

PART TWO OF FOUR: A YEAR REVIEW

I really really really really really don't want to do this. Really. Who wants to assess their resolutions at the start of the year and then ponder upon how much of a failure they are? But even though it cuts, I have to do this. Give myself a little bit of tough love.

It took me a while to actually figure out what I said I was going to do this year, and it appears that I had two sets of resolutions, one is kind of an overview and another is a more detailed take on every month. I'm going to evaluate only the overview of the resolutions. Are you ready to see me fail?

One. Blog more. This year I'm going to do my best to blog every week. It's going to be a challenge as I can hardly even blog every month anymore, but I'm going to do my best. I just want to get more into writing because I'm thinking of doing NaNoWriMo in November. 

I think I actually succeeded a tiny bit in this one. I blogged everyday in August this year, and I averaged 5 posts per month, which is more than a post every week, if you guys can't handle super duper incredibly advanced maths for extraordinary geniuses.  I didn't end up doing NaNoWriMo, because I would have died, because fifth year. But I still am quite pleased with how this resolution went.

Two. Read more. This year I'm really going to try and do the 50 books challenge, in an attempt to get myself back into reading. I am going to post the books that I'm planning to read each month right here so both you (if you want to) and I can keep up on my reading. 

Of the thirty five books I planned to read until June, I ended up reading six. And a half. I was reading GoT but I left it in the Philippines! I obviously need to work on this one because I love reading, or at least I used to. I think what makes it harder now than ever before is that a couple of years ago when I was such an avid reader, my family only had one laptop, and I didn't have a smart phone. So I've had to resort to offline delights, like reading, to amuse myself. But now, I have the entire World Wide Web in my fingertips and so it is quite hard to find time away from the internet when it's so convenient that I have it right here. I don't want to say that one of my resolutions this year would be to stay away from the internet a bit more, because 1. I don't think I'm emotionally strong enough for that, and 2. I actually do use the internet for communication with my Friend. But I don't know. We'll see how it goes.

Three. Be more organised. Along with posting the books that I will be reading for 2012, I will also be posting my plans every month so I can keep track with what I have to do. 

This happened for January, and then never happened ever again. Don't look back.

Four. I'm also starting TV shows! Get ready for explosions of feels! You can visit my tumblr here so you can see me lose my head as I fangirl. 

I did way too much of this.

And... Five. Actually try and keep all of my resolutions for once!

It's okay, I haven't run out of years yet to say this one again and again and again and again.

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It's easy to plan. But it's so hard to keep the motivation to make your plan happen. Which is why this year was another failure resolution-wise. But 2013 was a great year when it came to unforeseen events that I never would have even imagined was ever going to happen. It was a year of firsts. First time abroad without parents (Oh Italy. Love of my life, fire of my loins), first time I got a place in a nationwide competition (I got fourth place in the CareerSkills competition! I'm the short one), and a lot of firsts in my personal life (I'm sorry to disappoint but I'm not going to enumerate them here for you). So many things happened to me that I felt made me grew as a person, and I'm not just talking about 2013, I'm also talking about being sixteen. When I turned sixteen last year I made a post about how I didn't feel like a teenager, but I only had to wait a few months to feel... I don't know, young. Crazy. And, dare I say it, infinite. 2013 was a great year. It was for me full of surprises and heartbreakers as well as heartwarmers and being-so-happy-you-tear-up-ers. Basically what I'm saying is even though I failed in keeping my plans this year, I've never been in a happier place. (I'm getting emotional.) 2013 gave me experiences that I would never forget, and I feel alive, and content. Things happened. And I am happy.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

PART ONE OF FOUR: A GENERAL BORING UPDATE THAT INCLUDES APOLOGIES, EXCUSES, AND THE LATEST NEWS ON MY LIFE

HELLO Hello. Yes, everyone. I am still alive. Not killed by home and school work as you guys have probably suspected., since I haven't posted a thing since, what, like, over a month ago? Anyway. I am here, alive and kicking, and I just wanted to greet you all a happy Christmas (or whatever you celebrate) and a prosperous New Year!

But greeting you is not the sole reason I decided to finally show up around here. I do miss blogging, and it is hard to find the time and motivation to do it (which is why I've been going MIA at times for the past, like, two years) but I still like doing it. To me it's a form of journalling and self-expression, and the biggest plus is I get to talk about my favourite topic: myself (*coughnarcissistcough*). And I know every New Year I say it, but I will not stop saying it until I actually do it: I want to blog more. Therefore I hereby announce that, even though I will be in my final and most difficult year of school for the second half of next year (which is probably all the more reason to do this), 2014 will be the year of writing and creativity. I will try not only to write more, but to actually participate in the blogging world. I've been blogging for nearly four years now and I think it's a real shame that I hardly know any fellow bloggers. So yeah, I will try and work on that.

Saying that school work would've killed me is not entirely unreasonable, as fifth year has been a total nightmare for me so far. I've been doing so good until the November sembreak, at which point I admit I've been incredibly careless and totally underestimated fifth year. As a result I got less than stellar Christmas results. I am happy with them, taking into account the work that I put into them, but it's just that I think I could've done so much better. Because of those results I had an epiphany, in which I realised that fifth year actually requires work (shocker). I can't just listen in class + stare at the pages of my book for about ten minutes, I have to actually pour my heart and soul into the epitome of BORE that is revision. If you know me I absolutely despise revising, almost as much as I hate household chores, and I loathe household chores pretty hard. The way I see it I'm not gaining anything from revising. I'm not learning new things (which is what I'm going to school for), I am just going over stuff I already know again and again and again and again until it is ingrained in the slab of meat that is my brain. It's pretty tiresome. But in fifth year, it's a requirement. So I guess I'm going to have to do that now if I want to get the results I want, even though it kills me. Because mar a deir an seanfhocal, you reap what you sow.

My work life has not been entirely bad though. I've recently joined the debating team in school with my friends. It's my first time to debate and I thought I wouldn't like it because I'm not the biggest fan of arguments, but it's actually pretty fun. I've been chosen as one of the speakers and I'm enjoying it so far. It's pretty nerve-wracking, but it feels so good when your team wins. The research part a couple of weeks before the debate is also great, especially when the team gets the side of the motion that you don't necessarily agree with. It's good learning about different sides of the argument, and learning how to adapt with the opinion that your team gets. Even though I don't agree with it, I actually usually end up going for whatever side we're on after the research, because I end up looking at that other side of the story. Saying that though, I have stated things that are not actually my opinion just because I thought it would be a good persuasion tool. Debating is a dirty business, man, but it's very good if you want to expand your boundaries and broaden your perspective.

As well as debating, I've also been busy with the Comhairle na nÓg in my county, of which I am a member for about two months now, and hopefully will be a member for the next two years. I attended their AGM last October (? or was it September?) through my friend Brónagh's invitation and decided to run for the election of new members. To my surprise, I was actually chosen, and that's how I ended up being in Comhairle. It is delightful. It's nice to be involved in the affairs happening in my country, especially that which involving young people, no matter how tiny my contribution is. I did my first Comhairle event a couple of weeks ago, where we handed out surveys and free wristbands as part of our Anti-Bullying campaign. We also got to design our own T-shirts, which I thoroughly digged. I also got to meet new people which was kind of nice, because I've been living in Ireland for the past four years and I only know people in my school (I'm not the most sociable person). Yeah, it's good, and I would really recommend it if you're into these kinds of shenanigans.

I think that's about it for me. That has been my life for the past two months and it has been great, really, if you don't take into account the stress of school. Hopefully things would be better school-wise next year. But for now, I'm in my Christmas break, and I will try not to think of that, at least until tomorrow.

OKAY GOODBYE.

Danielle