Hello everyone! This year has been one of a kind, and for me, it definitely deserves a year-end post, so here it is.
As we all know, we have been stuck in our homes for about nine (9) months because of this COVID-19 pandemic. Come to think of it, you can conceive a child at the beginning of the quarantine period and give birth by the end of the year. LOL. I don't know about you, but I was diligent in following the health and safety protocols. I actually stayed home for almost the whole duration of the year, and believe it or not, there were months when I never went out of the house, not even once. I had a continuous streak of one hundred twenty-one (121) days without ever going out. Can anyone break my record? JK. I broke my streak when I had to pay my tuition fee though. So yeah. Haha
Anyway, if you are interested as to how I have spent my year, feel free to read on.
First 3 (normal) months of 2020
The first 3 months were normal. The government was still unbothered with the few cases that emerged in January and February. It was in March when things started to get out of hand. We all thought that things will get better by April, but we were so wrong. Cases per day increased to hundreds and then to thousands, but our country never succeeded in lowering it down to zero, unlike with other countries. So we are forced to deal with it. I don't think we can succeed in zeroing the cases down unless all people follow health and safety protocols diligently, and/or when an effective vaccine is made to be mandatory to everyone, but this is still too early to happen.
Series and movie marathon
On the bright side, I had more time to watch Korean Drama, American series, and KPOP videos. We had a 4-month vacation in contrast with the usual 2-month vacation since we started our classes in August, but too bad we can't use it to travel since there were travel bans everywhere. So with this, I used those whole four (4) months to stream all the Korean Dramas and American series that I have always wanted to watch. I even finished all the seasons of Brooklyn Nine-Nine. I might have finished around 10 to 15 Korean Dramas during those months as well. Yes, I am a sucker for TV series, but also movies. Netflix and Viu were my friends, as well as some shady streaming sites online. *shhh*
I have thought of giving you my watchlist but unfortunately, since this was just an afterthought, I haven't listed all of them, although I do tweet about them every time. So I requested for my Twitter archive to see if I can track them from there. I'll list them down once it's ready, so stay tuned!
As for July, my last vacation month prior to the start of the school year, since we will be attending our classes online and in the comfort of our respective rooms, I decided to finally clean my room and give it a bit of a makeover. But since I'm not that proud of my room yet and I had a lot of limits which hindered me to fully renovate it as how I wanted to, I can't show any pictures. But I still thought I'd want to talk about it since this is still a highlight of my year. I have finally put my stereotypical Virgo trait to good use, which made me happy. Haha
I have watched countless room makeover videos for this room revamp of mine. I recommend ELLE UY DECOR for this. Although my room makeover isn't ideal yet, at least I have gathered a lot of knowledge for future use.
First online semester (S.Y. 2020-2021)
As I have said, we started our semester last August and ended in the second week of December. This semester is the shortest semester we have ever had so far, but this also felt the longest and I desperately wanted it to end. Everyone was trying to adjust to this new mode of learning.
This was one of the most stressful semesters that I ever had. The first month was the hardest for me since this was my adjustment period. It was a bummer that I cannot go to the library to study, so I was struggling to keep myself awake whenever I study. I cannot even find comfort somewhere else whenever I want to.
Since our classes were synchronous, we had to deal with internet connection problems and power interruptions. I was lucky not to have experienced power interruptions during the whole semester, and I'm really thankful for that. However, there were times when I had to deal with the sudden loss of internet connection. It was weird though since it only started during the after-midterm period which is also coincidentally the time that I updated my Windows OS. Maybe there is a relation between the Windows update and the faulty internet connection on my laptop, since, despite the loss of internet connection on the laptop, the connection on my iPad mini and my phone still work, but oh well. I just hope the faulty internet connection on my laptop won't hinder my upcoming semester bigtime.
Aside from synchronous classes, we also had asynchronous tasks such as writing case digests. Since I really hate handwriting hundreds of case digests (why did I even bother to study Law then? JK), I kept ranting about it, but I eventually accepted it as it is and vowed that I will never repeat that subject again until my formal bar exam review, so that became my driving force to comply with it. Aside from writing case digests, we also had an outline-making activity, court observation, and a video introduction submission, so it was good that our professors are creative in requiring such assignments.
My first online semester was really draining and I was struggling the whole time. The first month was terrible since I didn't do well in my first quiz because I was too tensed and I didn't have time to clear my mind enough to be able to think straight. My oral recitations were also bad since I didn't think that I gave satisfactory answers. For some reason, even though I studied hard, I cannot ace the semester as well as I wanted to. I couldn't even remember what I have studied sometimes. Things weren't in my favor at times which made me frustrated because I have seen that my blockmates and my friends were doing much better even though my circumstances are more favorable than theirs. Sometimes I think that I am just stupid or whatnot because despite being a full-time student with a decent internet connection, I cannot even be a top scorer among my classmates, and I even struggled with oral recitations since I always needed help from my blockmates to answer, so I insulted myself a lot, like I thought that I should really be ashamed of myself.
I just hope that I'll do better in the upcoming semester. Despite all my worries for the semester that just ended, I believe that I bounced back a bit and did well since my grades so far were good. I just hope that I will pass all my subjects for that semester since there are still three (3) subjects that do not have grades yet. May the spirit of Christmas shower upon my professors so that they will not be able to give us failing marks. Pretty please. Huhu
Also, aside from my experiences for this first online semester, the Top 10 Dean's Listers from the previous semester (Second Semester, S.Y. 2019-2020) were also announced, and I placed 6th among my batchmates. I am really thankful to God for my achievements, and I hope I can maintain that.
New friends; Support system
This year was really something since aside from everything that has happened lately, I have made a considerable amount of new friends and got close with people whom I'd never thought I'd get close with. You know those times when each year, there are people who suddenly become part of your life even though you never expected it? This was one of those moments. I got close with a relative who is around my age for the first time in my life. I became friends with someone I have never interacted with personally during pre-COVID times. Also, since the school administration did not give us the freedom to choose which block to pick because our block was predetermined in contrast to the usual first-come-first-serve basis, I became close with friends who weren't in my usual group of friends. This made me believe more that everything does happen for a reason, and I'm happy that it kinda worked favorably for me.
I am also thankful that despite experiencing a lot of struggles during the whole semester, I had my support system which kept me sane. My support system is not only with my newly found group of friends, but also the entire block as well, and I'm thankful for that. It feels good to know that I am not dealing with all those struggles alone.
Discovery of subliminals
As I am aware that the subliminal community doesn't want to expose the wonders of subliminals since they are afraid that there would be malicious people who would learn about it and do the unthinkable, I was thinking twice as to whether or not I should write about it here, but since I can't deny that this has also been a highlight of my 2020, I'll talk about it nevertheless, but not in a detailed manner.
To those who do not know, subliminals are those visual or auditory stimuli that the conscious mind cannot perceive, often inserted into other media such as TV commercials or songs [source]. So with this, YouTubers upload subliminals which you can listen to so that you can manifest what you want to happen in your life, such as losing weight or getting high grades. If you are into the Law of Attraction, this will be of great help. I'm not sure these worked on me well, but there were times when I felt that they have worked. After using these subliminals, I felt that things started to go in my favor little by little. If you want to know the subliminals that I listen to, don't hesitate to send me a message.
Please note though that you have to be particular with the subliminals you listen to since there are those that are not safe. There were people who were driven to commit suicide because of those unsafe subliminals, so please be careful. Always check the comments to be safe.
A kitten named Panda
This year, we had a new kitten that we named Panda. We met her at our treehouse last December 4. She seemed to be feeling cold all alone so we took care of her. She became our happy pill and our reason to go to the treehouse every day. We named her Panda because she is black and white and the placement of her black pattern was like that of a panda. While having her, we finally knew how it is to be a cat mom. Our phone galleries were filled with a lot of cat pictures. We made a lot of memories with her.
However, our time with Panda didn't last long. Panda died last December 17, but she already showed signs of dying sometime in the late afternoon of the day prior. We didn't really know what happened which led to her death since we saw that her mother cat seemed to be taking care of her while we were away. On the morning of December 17, Panda was already dead, which left us heartbroken.
I completely forgot to include this highlight when I wrote it on the last day of 2020 since I am usually someone who would easily forget things, especially bad memories. I guess I did a good job in trying to forget my sadness from Panda's death. Even though she was with us for only twelve (12) days, those moments with her were precious. We feel bad that we couldn't keep her alive, and we had our regrets, but I hope that we can fully move on from it. At least we can treat this as our learning experience.
Becoming a new ATINY
I find it funny though that I decided to include this in my 2020 highlights, but let me tell you that this is one of the best things that happened to me this year. If you have heard of the KPOP group ATEEZ, they are really worth stanning since they have a wide array of great and catchy songs, plus their performances are always top-notch. They are also fun to watch, and their channel has a lot of interesting content. Aside from the music videos, ATEEZ uploads their vlogs and individual contents regularly. The best part is that these contents all have English subs, which makes international ATINYs like me so happy. Haha!
The reason why I included this in my highlights is that I felt that ATEEZ has not yet been given the recognition that it deserves like I feel that they should be as popular as other prominent KPOP groups, not necessarily now, but in the upcoming years to come. They do not really come from the so-called Big 3 (SM, JYP, YG), but I can see that despite that, they have worked their way up to become decently popular, and I can see that their company, KQ Entertainment, has been treating them well, so I'm happy with that.
I have been an ATINY for only twenty (20) days now, counting from the end of my final exams (December 11) until today, which is still a relatively short time, so I kinda felt bad that I have been sleeping on ATEEZ for the past two (2) years, but at least I'm catching up. I don't know what's got into me that two (2) years ago, I didn't really like Pirate King that much, but now I really love it. I guess music preferences do change as years go by, though I can say that I'll never be able to like mumble rap though. LOL.
Are you an ATINY, too? Let me know in the comments. Haha!
My 6-year-old iPad mini 2 is in dire need of a battery replacement
My iPad mini turned six (6) years old last January 4, 2020, and is supposed to have its 7th birthday this January 4, 2021. December 29 was the last time I have used this device this year. Yesterday, my iPad mini failed to turn itself on, though when charged, it shows that it is charging even though there seems to be no progress with it. The screen still responds when I unplug the charger and when I plug it back in, so I know that it is still alive. Right now, I'm trying to revive it by charging it nonstop, but my efforts are proved to be futile. Prior to this, my iPad mini already had its occasional shutdowns, and it usually shuts down when it's too hot or too cold. But now, the battery just surrendered. Just when I thought my 2020 won't have a plot twist anymore, here comes the predicament of my iPad mini.
I am just relieved though that it's still alive. All of my school files are here, and if it's dead, this will not do good for my upcoming Bar exam review, since I was not able to back up any files from it prior to this due to my busy schedule. Of course, I did save some files on my laptop and in my Messenger chat, but saving them back to my iPad mini would take me at least a month. Imagine saving four (4) years' worth of files though.
So yes, I have just discovered that the lifespan of Apple's batteries is about six (6) or seven (7) years at most. I included this as my highlight of my 2020 because I love my iPad mini so much and it has been my everyday companion for almost seven (7) years now. I am a bit down lately because of this situation, but I hope I can get its battery replaced at the earliest possible time next year.
Has anyone experienced this problem similar to mine? If so, let me know in the comments. Any valuable feedback is highly appreciated.
Since I probably won't be able to blog for another few months again, I am just going to insert a talk about how I am so thankful to those who left comments in my previous blog post. At that time, I really thought that there is no more point in continuing to blog anymore since I felt like I was wasting time, but those who commented made me redefine my purpose in blogging. For the past eleven (11) years, I have always thought that I should be earning money from blogging and that will define my blog's worth. But since I was very inconsistent in blogging and I didn't really write enough interesting content, all these led to my blog's downfall. These were my thoughts all throughout the years, but my perspective changed when I have read those comments. I realized that if I wanted to gain any monetary value from this blog, I should be treating it like a business, which is contrary to my ideal purpose which is to make this my personal blog. So to those who commented, thank you so much. I decided to continue with blogging because of you. Shoutout to Louise and Totetally Legal!
But then again, I am faced with another problem which is the upcoming expiration of the custom domain that I am currently using for this blog. My custom domain, thesavvyaspirant.com, will expire on March 22, 2021, which is in the middle of my semester, so I'm not sure how I should wrap up this blog. Maybe I'll just renew this domain for another year until I pass the Bar exam soon. *fingers crossed*
I'm thinking of using my real name as my custom domain soon since I have already established my online presence with it. But then again, I'm not sure if that will be good for my profession. To be honest, I probably would only write about my hobbies if I were to establish my new blog soon, but we'll see.
So you have reached the end of my year-end blog post. Yay! I will take the time to thank all the people who became part of my 2020. The only significant face-to-face interactions I had this year were with my family, and the rest was online. At this point, I'd probably forget my friends' faces if it weren't for online classes and social media, but I think this would be an exaggeration. LOL. I still remember everyone, thankfully.
Anyway, thank you once again to those who are with me this year. I had high hopes for this year but it all went down the drain because of this pandemic. I'm just thankful that none of my family members got infected, and I hope it remains that way. Some of my friends got infected though, but I'm glad that they have recovered. I don't really trust the vaccines right now though since it's still too early to tell how they would work on us, but I hope that these won't contain any microchips that will control humanity or whatnot. JK.
Most importantly, I thank God for guiding me this year in all aspects of my life. I was blessed with good health all throughout the year, and I never experienced colds and cough for more than nine (9) months, which is rare and probably the first time this happened to me. So with that, I can say that I am marked safe from COVID-19 and from other kinds of sickness this 2020, and I hope that it remains that way for me and my family in the years to come.
I think we can all agree that this year was really bad. Feng Shui experts gave us false expectations when they said that this will be a great year, but oh well. I just hope we can all bounce back from this. There are already millions of people all over the world who got infected from COVID-19. As much as I want to blame China and the people who created this virus, since I believe this was man-made, at this point we can't do anything about it anymore and as what I have said, we just have to deal with it by following health and safety protocols. Many lives were claimed from this pandemic, and a lot of people lost their jobs as well.
But despite everything, I believe that we all tried to enjoy this year in our own respective ways. Many of us probably got into KPOP and KDrama because of this pandemic, so welcome to the club. Haha! Tiktok has also become a trend, although I personally never posted anything since I am not good at dancing and I might just become a viral meme if I post one, so let's leave it like that.
I apologize for the lack of pictures on this post though. All my pictures are on my iPad mini which is currently in a coma, so I couldn't recover any of them as of this time. Please pray for my iPad mini's recovery. Huhu
As a final note, I hope that we all stay safe and healthy. Remember to wash your hands, use alcohol, observe social distancing, and to wear your face masks and face shield when you go outside. Stay at home, and only go out when necessary.
So, I guess that's it for now. Have a happy and prosperous new year, everyone! May this pandemic situation get better next year, or as a bare minimum, I hope that 2021 will at least be better.
I wish you all the best, and see you in 2021!