LA JOLLA APPRECIATIN':


Life's a beach...





wow this water looks delicious



It's truly a privilege that I can continue to call UCSD my home for the next couple years. Living in La Jolla has treated me so well--the beautiful beach is just a stroll away and the warm, sunny weather is enough to keep me satisfied. Despite years of avoiding the seaweed smell and hidden tar underneath the sand, I've actually found myself becoming a beach person! I mean how can you resist such good-lookin' waves? And don't get me started on those sunsets...

This is just an appreciation post to my darling La Jolla, San Diego. Your annoyingly photogenic scenery never ceases to amaze me :')

Stay classy San Diego,

Rachel

MALIBU // SANTA MONICA


My last free day of Spring Break 
was oh-so-satisfying...















I think she wore that shirt on purpose...jk <3




Vacation is over and my last quarter as a Freshman in college has begun...where has time gone??

For my last day of spring break, I joined my church's college group for a day out in Malibu and Santa Monica. We started off with an adventurous (and kind of dangerous to say the least) hike on the Escondido Falls trail in Malibu. Why was this hike dangerous? Well, if you noticed the 4th photo I posted, you would see a "no trespassing" sign in the midst of various bushes and rocks--we accidentally walked on the wrong path that lead us to a gravel-filled hill so steep that we had to get down on our knees to keep from falling.

Nonetheless, it was quite the experience and the day kept getting better with our trip to the beach. Now, for those who know me, biking at Santa Monica was only the second time I ever rode a bicycle (the first time was in China...story for another day). I think I'm almost a pro now...just kiddin'.

We ended the day with a meal at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.--I found out, after a quick google search that this restaurant was actually inspired by the movie Forrest Gump (a movie I highly recommend)! I had previously thought the movie came after but I guess I was wrong!

I had a wonderful time at home this break and I'm ready to start this new quarter with a bang! What did you do this break, or, if you are on break currently, what do you plan on doing?

Have an awesome day folks,

Rachel

DEATH MARCH TO POTATO CHIP:


Sometimes, expectations do not always
become realities...












"Let's go on a hike," they said. "It'll be fun," they said.

A couple weeks ago, my family group from Palomar Korean Church (PKC--a church I attend when I'm at school) decided to bond a little with the help of good ol' nature. I had heard a lot of Potato Chip Rock and the amazingly breathtaking photos I could take once I reached the trail's peak. What I did not hear a lot of, however, was the actual hike up to the scenic stone.

For someone who, on average, hits the gym less than 5 times a month (but that's going to change now OK) this hike was definitely not a "walk in the park"--it took about 2 1/2 hours to climb up and down the rocky mountain. Determined to reach the top, we took minimal breaks and relished in our sweat until finally, FINALLY we got to the famous Potato Chip, and let me tell you: it was worth it.

There was already a long line of people waiting to have their picture taken on the most thin slice of rock I had ever seen. Our group tried to take as many pictures as possible before starting our trip down on the trail. It was nice to see people arriving and being completely awe-struck by not only the rock, but also at their achievement of reaching the mountain's peak.

Climbing down, we took some time to take photos of ourselves against a backdrop of God's beautiful creation. The weather was perfect as well, which allowed for many great, clear images. All in all, the entire experience--despite the dust in our nostrils, sweat on our backs, and aches in our legs--was incredibly fulfilling and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys a challenge. Try out your New Year's Resolutions and endurance down here in San Diego and you may find that completing a challenge is in itself the most satisfying accomplishment you could ever experience.

Hope you are doing swell,

Rachel

JOSHUA TREE:


What's up with the Park Family and nature parks?










We just really enjoy traveling OK.

No, really. My dad can literally drive for 8+ hours straight without dying--given that we have a bathroom break somewhere in between. Because of my dad's wanderlust, my family has been blessed with the opportunity to say we've been to many locations across the nation. I think the travel bug actually bit me when my parents decided to take a teeny, tiny 2 month old me to Las Vegas. From that day on, I've been here, there, and everywhere(ish) and I only hope that I am able to continue my dad's influence on me forever until I die..(to visit all 7 continents is actually on my bucket list, given that I am physically able to travel to Antarctica and the Arctic).

After Christmas Day, my entire family took a visit to Joshua Tree National Park to enjoy a small speck of God's creation. This desert area is filled with an array of Joshua trees, or yucca brevifolia, whose roots reach deep into the ground and allow the plant to live for hundreds of years even in the dry, rain-less weather. There are also rock formations that one can climb about--there were even some climbers bravely attempting to free climb the giant boulders.

A trip to this place is definitely worth it especially if getting fit is on one's New Year's resolution list! The fresh desert air is a plus when hiking and this park offers plenty of benches for a meal break. Use this to help plan a trip and to know more about the history of the place.

Thanks for reading & see ya'll in the new year,

Rachel