2013 Review

This post is old, so what you see here may not reflect my current opinion and mindset, certain information may be outdated, and links may be broken.

Another year done and gone. I didn’t feel like 2013 was a great year. When I think back on what happened and what I did, a lot of it was just me trying to do work, school, and my hobbies. There were also some incidents that occurred in 2013 I’d like to forget, so really I can say that I am not fond of this year. I can only hope 2014 will be a better year for me! Regardless, here are my monthly recaps.

* I made Tomato Cilantro Soup since the commissary had no basil! It turned out okay.
* I tried my hands at making Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chips Granola Bites. Those was a pain in the behind to make since it wouldn’t stick very well, but they still tasted good!
* My gastrologist scheduled me a liver ultrasound in six months. That made me apprehensive since my first ultrasound was TRAUMATISING.
* I got my Kindle Paperwhite!
* Work was crazy because we were preparing for CoA accreditation . . .
* . . . so on my birthday, I was exhausted. So I stayed home and had seaweed soup, tteokkbokki, and watched Anastasia. My birthday “cake” was cream puffs.
* And then grad school resumed for me. Hello, Spring Semester 2013. :(
* I filed my taxes using TaxAct Online.
* I beat Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward on the PS Vita.
* I completed my super sekrit retirement gift for my band teacher.

* I beat Persona 4 Golden on the PS Vita.
* My best friend’s dog passed away, so I comforted her.
* I ordered a pink 3DS XL, which I named “Sakura”.
* I joined OKCupid to see how online dating works and whether it’s worth my time or not. I discovered quite a few pet peeves and many annoying guys.
* I met Vikki, tried Mongolian BBQ, and visited Gyeongbok Palace with her. Both of these experiences were a first for me!
* My phone died! So I got a new one, a Samsung Galaxy SIII.
* An annoying bint decided to troll my fanfic. That was super aggravating.

* I spent a good chunk of this month being addicted to Theatrythym Final Fantasy on the 3DS.
* I donated to my first GLBT organisation. I chose to donate to GLSEN in my friend’s B’s honour.
* Apparently I was in work and school hell this month. X_X;

* Amidst the hells, I discovered Instagram.
* Once I tired of Theatrythym Final Fantasy, I became hooked on Style Savvy: Trendsetters on the 3DS.
* I applied for a job in Camp Humphreys, did a phone interview, and sadly didn’t get the job.
* I finished my Spring Semester.

* I gave my Band Teacher her retirement gift and attended her final concert :(
* During my trip to Severance Hospital, I started reading The Hunger Games trilogy. I devoured the books because they were so intense, but I ended up not liking the final book compared to the other two.
* I started working out and joined this gym on base.
* I became a “blonde” again by getting my hair done.
* I tried the no-shampoo method with my hair.
* I met Piotr for the second time, the only guy I met through OKCupid. Unfortunately, I do not like board gaming like he does.
* I visited Garosu-gil for the first time and nearly went mental at the high cost of that area.
* Summer Semester 2013 started.

* I tried yoga and Pilates for the first time ever. I ended up NOT liking either of them.
* I gave coconut oil deodorant a try.
* I continued the no-shampoo experiment.
* Summer camp started at my workplace.
* Summer Semester ended!

* Speaking of Kindle, Amazon started up Kindle Worlds, which is something I do not support at all.
* I discovered that I am fond of jigsaw puzzles, so I began to do more of it at work and home.
* I started play Final Fantasy XIII and was enthralled by the high quality graphic, but I wasn’t enamoured with its vastly different battle system and story.
* Walmart sent me two 3DS games in a gigantic box. WTF, Walmart.
* I saw Epic for free, courtesy of my workplace.
* I attended my first one-year birthday party — the son of my co-worker — and we partied afterwards, and it was crazy. First time I partied like that in ages.
* Google closed down its RSS Reader, so that made me hunt down a new RSS Reader I could tolerate. I ended up sticking with TheOldReader, but it then decided to be a prick, so I transferred to Feedly and stuck with them since.

* I re-read the first HP book on my Kindle, after not reading it for years!
* I was sucked into the wonderful world of Percy Jackson and the Olympians. Modern re-telling of Greek myths? Yes, please! So wonderful the series was, I read all five books in 25 hours.
* I tried Ni No Kuni on the PS3 and didn’t care much for it.
* I got my dad a Kindle Fire HD for his birthday.
* I finished re-reading the second HP book.
* Work crap happened, an incident I’d like to completely forget.
* My beloved Band Teacher messaged me to tell me that she’s been diagnosed to having adenocarcinoma, which was in its late stages :(
* Fall Semester 2013 began.

* I visited Ansan for the first time to see Piotr.
* I got a digital perm done, but it wasn’t well-done.
* Provo, my desktop computer DIED. The power supply burnt out and took its motherboard!
* I was reading a lot of mediocre BL novels on my Kindle . . .
* . . . but then I read the Leviathan trilogy, and HOMG. It ranked up there with The Hunger Games trilogy and the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series as one of the best things I read this year.

* I took a week off from work.
* I got a new computer made, and I named the computer Kazama. It went through a hellish adventure where the computer blokes forgot to install an optical drive in my computer. Despite its issues, it’s a fabulous computer!
* I tried making Earl Grey Shortbread cookies.
* My beloved Band Teacher passed away, one day before her 65th birthday. I was devastated. I attended the Korea-based memorial service for her.
* I figured out how to make my ebooks DRM-free.

* I beat Gyakute Saiban V aka Phoenix Wright: Dual Destinies on the 3DS, which led me to re-play some of the other games in the series.
* I participated in NaBloPoMo 2013.
* I made Almond Flour Tea cookies.
* I got my knee X-rayed because it was bothering me. Turns out I got a fragment in there, and my distal femurs are not aligned properly. I’ll need to have surgery to fix them or live on painkillers.
* I made Almond Flour Chocolate Chips cookies. YUM.

* I realised now that I do a lot of my reading on the Kindle and am actually preferring that over paper books.
* Fall Semester completed!
* I ordered and read the Sailor Moon mangas.
* I watched Hakuouki Reimeiroku and that made me re-play the PSP game.
* I took another week off from work and I ended up meeting a bunch of people . . . see below

December 14 — Saturday ~ Went to Express Bus Terminal with C. and her two kids.
December 15 — Sunday ~ Walked around Itaewon and Hannam area. Stopped by Salam Bakery to buy some bread. Nearly got lost in the Dokkaebi Sijang area. Visited Mi Son’s Mum. Tried Softree and Glamorous Penguin.
December 16 — Monday ~ Stayed home and watched Hakuouki Reimeiroku :D
December 17 — Tuesday ~ Met N. and J. for lunch at Navy Club.
December 18 — Wednesday ~ Met Piotr for lunch at Navy Club.
December 19 — Thursday ~ Cancelled and postponed meeting D. since I came down with a bad cold. :(
December 20 — Friday ~ Met E. and his mate a Chansbros and then we went to Zelen for lunch.
December 21 — Saturday ~ Met Eeyore9990 at Camp Humphreys
December 22 — Sunday ~ Met E. and wander around Itaewon stopping by Jonny Dumplings, Ankara Picnic, and Passion5.
December 23 — Monday ~ Met D. for dinner at Trevia.


  1. Wow, you accomplished a lot in a year. I do hope that next year is better for you, like you there are some things I didn’t like in this year but other things made me happy and joyous this year. It really depends. Regardless, I hope you had a good Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  2. Whoa what a jam packed year!

    I hope 2014 is great to you! :)

  3. I feel you on 2013 not being a great year! Mine was the pits most of the time, buying our house was probably the only major thing that went down. LOL

    Good luck with 2014!

  4. Wow, you definitely had a jampacked year!! I can’t barely recall much of the beginning of this year anymore; more or less I guess I can go back through my facebook account and try to recall how the year went!! :p
    Hoping this upcoming year, it will be still as jampacked with goodness for you!

  5. Talk about a busy year! It amazes me how once we recall the things that happened month to month, we can excavate out a few memorable moments out of all things that actually happened. This makes me think about all of the things that we don’t remember, but still affected the trajectory of our year. I feel you on the fact that 2013 wasn’t the best year. However, these challenges motivates me for a better 2014. Happy [early] New Year to you! Here’s hoping we both find 2014 more memorable and engaging. :)

  6. I don’t think I even remember how of the things I’ve done this year. I can only come up with a handful of things. You have a pretty long list. It’s been quite a year for you.

    Happy new year Tara! I hope my card arrives before New Years at the very least. @___@

  7. Sounds like you had a busy year! It’s too bad you didn’t feel like 2013 was a great year though. I hope 2014 will be much better! Happy new year!

  8. I’m glad to hear that you really enjoyed your 2013 year! I’m sure 2014 will be a better year for you :D!

    From what I have been reading these past couple of years, you are creative with the meals that you make! Mmmm, Tomato cilantro soup sounds tasty on a cold day :)!

    The liver ultrasound doesn’t sound too pleasant. Hopefully you don’t need to go through any of those later on :X.

    You definitely treated yourself to some nice gadgets and games! I think it’s cute that you named your pink 3DS XL, Sakura. I suppose things happen for a reason and it’s a plus now that you have a new smartphone and computer too!

    Congratulations on finishing off the spring, summer, and fall semesters while working! I’m sure all of your hard work is worth it ^__^! Power to you for being able to juggle both at the same time~

    I am sorry to hear about your band teacher passing away before her 65th birthday. For sure, she made a great difference and gave positive inspiration to her students to lead great lives :). It is great of you to be there for her in her time of need.

    The last couple of weeks of December sounded really busy! It’s so awesome that you got to meet a bunch of people and went out with them. I hope you had fun spending time and getting to know them along with possibly making some long-term friends!

    Happy New Year’s, Tara!!! :D

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