LA HOLLA:


How do you pronounce
La Jolla?...




I remember when I first decided to attend UCSD, I had no idea how to pronounce the city that I would soon reside in (as I will assume many other students unfamiliar with its location experienced).

Now that I know the correct way of saying it--la hoya--it's been a interesting endeavor trying to come up with funny ways to butcher the city's name. Thus, when I saw the beanie, worn in the photos above, I suddenly acquired an irresistible urge to purchase it. Not only does it work well with virtually any outfit, but it also attempts to poke fun at the city's name in a comedic, yet hip way. I paired the beanie with my overalls that I previously thrifted (for $1.50 omg), as well as a sheer, floral collared shirt underneath.

OUTFIT:
-Beanie--UCSD Apparel
-Shirt--Korea
-Overalls--Calvin Klein (thrifted)
-Cardigan--Korea
-Necklace--Amazon
-Combat Boots--Dr. Martens

See you in my next post real soon,

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

LACMA:


Adventure time in LA...






My beautiful friends <3





I recently purchased a new lens for my camera--just in time for spring break!

Finally reunited with my friends after being away in college for so long, we decided to go for a trip to downtown LA. Following a trip to Lemonade (for the first time!) my friends and I drove over to LACMA for a mini photoshoot. It took some getting used to, but after a couple test shots, I was able to capture some awesome moments of our time together within the street light jungle located just outside the art museum. I definitely need to come back to this place during the day time and visit the special exhibits they hold every so often...

I hope those on spring break enjoy the last few days we have before returning to our busy schedules!

See ya in my next post,

Rachel

BALBOA PARK:


Good weather, good food, good company...


Bibimbap to satisfy my home-food cravings













With finals week just around the river bend (haha get it?) it was mighty due time for a last minute get-away. Luckily, my friend Shinah invited me on a trip to none other than the famous San Diego tourist hot-spot Balboa Park. This culturally rich and diverse area has a variety of attractions that include historical museums, a botanical garden, and interesting street performers. What made this trip even more of an experience was the beautiful, sunny weather and of course, my dearest friends.

As much as I wanted to explore more of what this place had to offer, time and homework were two factors we college students just didn't have enough of (jk on the homework, we have too much). Although, I did get some lovely, Facebook profile worthy shots of my friends...

If you ever have the chance, do visit this area! It's located right next to the San Diego Zoo and covers over 1000 acres of land--how grand!

Hope ya'll are killin them finals! And of course, thank you for reading :')

Rachel

p.s.-shoutout to junseok for driving us around!

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

THE LAST BOOKSTORE:


Every frugal bookworm's paradise...










One of the greatest pleasures in life is being able to start a book and become so immersed and connected to its characters, plot, and underlying message that you don't know what to do with yourself. To finish a book feeling very satisfied and enlightened is an undertaking I often take for granted. Visiting The Last Book Store, located in Los Angeles, led to me to believe that there was still a hope in the tangible book industry even during the rise of Kindles and the dwindling number of Barnes & Nobles. I love flipping pages, annotating important lines, and even smelling that all-to-familiar-homey smell of books that you all know what I'm referring to.

This bookstore actually contains a lot more than just books--the two floors contain various artworks and stations that sell materials and hold workshops. Basically, anyone searching for some therapeutic alone-time (or if you're on a date, that works too!) can enjoy everything The Last Book Store offers. They offer a plethora of books, new and used, for reasonable prices that will keep your wallet smiling and bookworm heart full of content. Even if reading is not your thing, this place will keep your creative, artistic mind jogging as you venture through book-filled mazes and interestingly decorated rooms.

I bought four novels to read during the time in between classes when I'm not reading my Bible or catching up on homework. After reading Haruki Murakami's novel, 1Q84, and getting that odd sensation where I can't quite catch up to reality--where I'm caught in a limbo, still processing the author's masterpiece--I told myself that I'd read more of his work. Along with two of Murakami's books, I bought two classic pieces: All the King's Men and The Road. I will probably do an Opinon post on one or two of the books after I've finished reading...so look out for that!

Hope ya'll have had a great weekend,

Rachel

DOWNTOWN LA APPRECIATIN':


For those days when I'm missing New York...









When you think of Los Angeles, what comes to mind?

For me, some of what I conjure up in my head include: food, museums/galleries, and, of course, traffic. This array is actually very reminiscent of Times Square in New York, which I miss so dearly (only, NY has extra-food, extra-museums, and extra-traffic).

As a native of Southern California, visiting downtown L.A. is nothing novel to me. However, on some occasions, I suddenly become aware of the prominence that lies within the area I take advantage of too easily. I become inspired by the captivating architecture evocative of the 1920s style and the subtle, yet awe-inducing street art painted on random corners of certain one-way streets.

I took these shots sitting in the back of our family van, completely mesmerized by a spectacle that I never would have looked twice at a couple years ago. Everything became an adventure--I wanted to revisit all the places I had been to throughout my life and take another look, but this time with a more honest and open-minded lens. I hope these photos and what I've expressed provokes you to return to those places you haven't fully appreciated yet. Go with the desire to catch all the details you missed the first time. Take pictures too and record your memories...

Happy travels,

Rachel Park

LITTLE TOKYO:

 
Third-wheelin' with my parents a.k.a. an easy, cheap way 
to eat a lot and spend quality bonding time...







Before winter quarter started at my university, my parents decided to take me along with them to Downtown LA. We all were craving some meat, so we chose to drive on over to our favorite shabu shabu place in Little Tokyo. I swear, this place is amazing. The owner, an aging, yet extremely amiable Japanese man, has been working at Shabu-Shabu House since...probably its conception. He really knows how to work in a restaurant catered to people who truly enjoy some good food and company.

The only downside to this place would have to be its waiting list. Because Shabu-Shabu House is so popular, a group would probably be seated, on average, an hour and a half after arrival. This, however, is not as bad as it sounds--the tiny restaurant is located in a plaza filled with various cafes and shops that you can explore as you wait for the mouth-watering Japanese dish. My parents and I, as we waited for our name to be called, visited some of the stores and even satisfied our hunger by eating a savory chicken kabob and red-bean filled goodness as an appetizer.

If you're ever in need of an adventure or want to try a different cuisine, make sure to stop by Little Tokyo and dine at Shabu-Shabu House. I hope you've also had a great first week of 2014!

Thanks for reading,

Rachel Park

P.S.-I've started Winter Quarter at university (supposedly the most difficult quarter for Freshmen) so my posts may or may not publish as consistently as before. Keep in tune though for future blog entries! Thank you all for your support. xx