BACK FROM MY HIATUS


Sometimes, you just have to force yourself to be inspired












...and I mean that in the best way possible. 

The last time I uploaded a post on this blog, I was still somewhere having the time of my life in Europe. I returned from my trip studying abroad in Rome on Christmas Eve. After 4 days of not eating shortly thereafter (due to a nasty, NASTY illness) I kind of lost motivation for all the creative aspects of life. Basically, I was overwhelmed by the amount of editing and photographing and videotaping and instagramming (you get it) that I had done in Europe and I really just wanted a break.

Boy, was it ever so difficult to get my head out of that break. It took me a whole month and a half to push myself to becoming a more creative thinker. I had forgotten how passionate I had once been and how much I really enjoyed creating new and exciting content. It wasn't after a sermon I heard one Sunday about God allowing us to have not only good work, but also good rest that it clicked. He meant for us to use the talents He gave us and that it is truly good to embark in those activities. For me, that entails going out on adventures and capturing precious moments on my camera. It means that I can take time to write out my thoughts and share it on the web. I can actually learn to enjoy the countless hours spent editing videos and photos to post for others to enjoy. 

So here's the beginning of a "re-vamp" in my creative life! 

These photos were captured President's Day--we had a mini photo-turned-food adventure in San Diego on a blistering hot day. Good food, good photos, and good company!

Talk to ya'll very soon, 

Rachel

P.S.-Check out my latest video on you YouTube channel!
P.P.S.-I've also updated my Flickr with more HQ photos!
P.P.P.S-The Rachel Studio is up and back in business! Contact my email for appointments/inquiries!

PICNIC BY THE BEACH:


An ode to La Jolla's sunsets, weather, and beautiful people...


This could very possibly be Jay Gatsby's summer house 



Aren't they beautiful?



#nofilter
It is hard to deny how beautiful the city of La Jolla is. I honestly will never grow tired of its sunsets and the perfectly sunny weather. Everyday there's always a new place to discover and last week it was this wonderful place: The Cliffs.

Conveniently located only a walking distance away from my university, this place is an ideal place for an afternoon picnic. It's a small area overlooking the Pacific Ocean and let me tell you--the view is absolutely breathtaking. On the right side stands a lavish mansion with features reminiscent of Gatsby's house (eg Baz Luhrmann) only with a Californian twist. To the left is the extended West Coast shoreline with all its beach house, sea-smell filled glory.

After taking one too many photos and getting full from the wonderful food Rachel had prepared for us, we got down to business and chatted about God and shared some personal stories. It was so relaxing and calm being able to enjoy the beach and talk among close friends--something I needed more often I realized. 

If you're ever down in La Jolla, be sure to visit this place. Take time to just sit and watch the sun rise or set. The peacefulness is enough to make you feel elated and at rest. 

Stay calm and cool friends, 

Rachel 

BEST NIGHT OF MY LIFE?:

  

One of the best nights of my life happened recently...


Sam Lin: aka an amazingly talented violinist and looper

Aijia opening for Clara C


Who else can pull of this costume but her fab self?

I kindadied at this point



Stage list..


Her: "are you going to explain why I am wearing this to your friends?"




"Meet Clara C" has officially been crossed off my bucket list. 
Last month I was informed that Clara C was performing in San Diego. More specifically in La Jolla, and even more specifically in UCSD. I could not contain my excitement and had to purchase VIP tickets (which included a meet-n-greet) as soon as possible.
This past week, unfortunately, has been so hectic: taking midterms, going to different org meetings, and finishing essays were just a few of the many things that I experienced. But right smack-dab in the middle of it all, I went to see one of the very few people that I look up to for inspiration--CLARA C aka the most down to earth, beautiful, and talented artist ever. I discovered her musical genius on YouTube back in middle school and I was completely blown by her covers of "Rocketeer" and "Rhythm of Love" (among many), and since then I have fallen in love with her talent and religiously follow the songs that she herself have written and composed and uploaded onto the internet. It was through her music that I was also able to discover other artists on YouTube such as Tori KellyJayesslee and David Choi.
So, it is suffice to say that seeing her in real life and being in her presence AND standing literally right in front of her as she sang was a near out-of-body experience. She came out decked in a Jesse costume since it was Halloween/her birthday the next day. As she talked about her life and recent marriage to her "fish" (Ahhh, adorable!), I couldn't help but smile like a maniac the entire time. Being able to sing along to all of her songs only added to the immense amount of bliss I was feeling. Her personality combined with her voice creates such a euphoric atmosphere that you cannot help but feel soothed and at peace.
Opening for her were two artists: Aijia and Sam Lin, both of whom were extremely talented in their area of expertise-singing and instrumental, respectively. The night was amazing, filled with nostalgia and awe, but as if it couldn't get any better, Clara C asked if anyone wanted to take a picture for her on the stage and decided to choose ME to do it. ME. I freaked out and couldn't contain my excited, I literally though I was going to pee in my pants. Here's a short clip to show you:



The fish lens she wanted to use couldn't capture a good picture, so I took a video (the reason why I'm moving). She called me a pro and asked for my name *sob*. It was basically the icing on the cake of this concert. I also got to meet her after the show and I gave her the letter of appreciation I wrote and she signed my CDs (I kept my cool the whole time to just in case you're wondering). 
All in all, the night was one of the best experiences of my life and I couldn't have asked for a better break in between midterms. I hope that I can meet her again later in later years, but for now, I will relive these moments and put her YouTube playlists on repeat...

Happy, happy, happy, 

Rachel

**I've included links to YouTube channels within this entry. Please check out Clara C's channel and the other artists as well! Have fun and be mind blown by her talent <3

FAMILY BONDING:



With college days speeding by like no other,
 it was due time that I had a nice relaxing day with my family...




Are you drooling yet?
Of course, my mom and I were the only two excited for this






My outfit for the day

Couldn't have asked for two greater parents than them <3

It's already Week 4 in college which means midterms are just around the corner. There is literally no time to take a breath here in university and the constant reading ( I'm taking 2 history/writing, and a communications class) is beginning to take its toll on me. Of course, I can't really complain as I'm taking classes that I actually enjoy learning in and I don't have to do any, ANY math at all.
But getting to the point of this blog entry, my parents and brother came down from home to visit and have a lovely outing venturing around La Jolla. We ate an incredibly filling meal at a famous place, here in San Diego, called Phil's BBQ. Let me tell you, baby back ribs + onion rings + coleslaw + french fries + baked beans = one happy Park Family. We devoured more than what we possibly could have during a normal lunch break and decided to walk it off at a swap meet nearby.
If there is one thing you need to know about me, it's that I love discounts. I literally thrive off of sale racks and thrift stores. So it was to no one's surprise that I literally ran to this place (my mom is actually addicted to antique/thrift shopping as well). My mom and I happily spent the next hour and a half scouring through old, but valuable items and found interest in different pieces of jewelry as my dad and younger brother trudged along 10 feet behind us. As with all events of shopping, it was a hit-or-miss affair. In this case, more miss than hit: I ended up leaving with just a gold, squiggly midi ring for a buck.
To end the day, we went to Balboa and strolled along the walkway admiring the beach and people-watching. I'm truly so blessed to have such a loving family and I know that by studying my best in college, I'll one day be able to give just as much support back to them.

Outfit:
- Sheer cardigan-- Anthropologie
- Striped dress-- Cotton On
- Black glitter sandals-- Target
- Camera bag-- Ebay

Peace n blessings,

Rachel

A NEW BEGINNING:




Guess who's in college? 


I finally moved in to my university, UCSanDiego, Saturday morning and have settled in to my dorm. I've got to say, it's definitely been an exhausting, yet incredible past couple of days. 
To begin, I have met a plethora of surprisingly very amiable people (some of whom I'm now close friends with) and wandered around the campus enough to realize how out of shape I am in. There are so many hills that I have probably trudged up and down several times, which is a good indication that I need to hit the school's gym soon...
Like any university, a "Welcome Week" is dedicated to all incoming freshman and transfer students in which one could purchase school sweaters for a semi-affordable price (I mean $50 for a sweater, c'mon) and grab tons and tons of free items aka 'swag'. I think I've received one too many flyers and wristbands, but what's there to complain about when there's FREE FOOD involved?
I'm so relieved to have chosen this school to attend for my next four years of life. The weather is perfect, the people are approachable, and the campus is beautiful. I took some photos for you to see a glimpse of what my new beginning is all about:

Lovin' this new life so far, 
Rachel