Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Celebrating 2012

Hello everyone!

I am currently in Bozeman, Montana, spending some time with Abers and her wonderful family, and waiting to be reunited as the Meadowlark Trio with Timmy on New Years Day!
And as I am sitting here, waiting to kick off 2013 with two recitals that I get to perform with my bestest friends, I can't help but be filled with incredible warmth, happiness, and gratefulness.
(more information on these recitals will be coming soon, but you can also go to our trio blog for the times and places!   =))
I have truly lead a blessed life, and I am so thankful for everyone who has played a part in making it so wonderful!  

One of the things I am really thankful for this year is the fact that I started this blog.  
I have never been good at keeping diaries of any sort,
but somehow, I have been able to keep up with uploading onto the blog at least once a week!
Perhaps it's the gentle nudgings from my family members who are scattered all over the world whenever I get lazy with the postings?
or perhaps I do find that blogging can be rather therapeutic, much the way others find diaries therapeutic?
or perhaps that I find it much more interesting than diaries because I can include pictures?

Whatever the reason, I am so glad that I kept up with the blogging because it's such a great way to look back and remember all of the wonderful things that has happened in the past year!

So here are some of the many things I am really grateful for this past year.

I am so grateful that I had a travel buddy during the most stressful time of the year; 
the audition season.
Meredith and I were both studying with Julie at UNL,
and both of us were auditioning for Master's programs this year.
Somehow, we were fortunate enough to not only have almost all the same schools on our list,
but also able to schedule all of our auditions at the same time!
This meant that we could travel together,
we rarely had to be alone in a foreign city,
and also that we each had a cheerleader by our side as we went to go kick some butt in the auditions!
I really couldn't have asked for a better traveling and auditioning partner!  ;)

Me trying to have Meredith hair.  at an antique store in Ann Arbor, MI.

I am so grateful that I had so many opportunities to collaborate with amazing musicians/friends!

I had worked with Nels Drue Daily, who is really a wonderful composer, for a couple of years,
and this year was really an incredible year of collaboration with him!
He wrote a piece for April and I called "3 Impulses", and we got to perform that at a festival in Kearney earlier this year.
Then, our trio premiered a piece he wrote us called the "Meadowlark Rag" in May!
It is such a fun piece, and we are so excited to get to perform it again in the recitals coming up this week in Bozeman!
He is currently writing another piece for me and April, and we can't wait to premiere it in a recital next year!
Here's to another year of wonderful collaboration!  ;)
Abers and I with the Daily's.  Ashley and Nels; beautiful people, wonderful musicians.

In May, a couple of good friends and I formed a tango band, and gave a tango-ish/latin-ish recital!
It was my first time really venturing out and trying a different 'style' of music,
and it was So. Much. Fun!!
I got to try many things I had never had to do before like improvising and transcribing,
and it was fun to get to play with different instruments like the Cajon, the double bass, and the guitar.
We also premiered an original piece by our guitarist, Alexios Anest,
which had a bit of a bluegrass-ish kind of a feel, which was really fun as well  =)
Such a fun project! 
our tango-ish band  haha  ;)

Then, of course, there was the 'Friends Concert'.
It was a concert where the four of us performed different pieces with one another,
sort of as a farewell concert.
It was I believe the night before graduation?
the three of us--Michael, Tim, and I--were graduating,
so it was quite an emotional recital.
I'm glad we all got to play together though  =)
and actually, all four of us will be together again!
Funny how life works right?
we were so sad because we thought this concert would be our last,
but the Meadowlark trio is back together for a concert, and Michael is coming to join us to hang out!
I cannot WAIT for all of us to be together again!
friends.  there really could be a TV show about us--we went through so much together..  haha

I am so grateful for so many graduations this year!
Mom graduated with her Master's degree, and also got her Nurse Practitioner certificate (go mommy!).

I graduated with my Bachelor's degree from UNL.
UNL will always hold a special place in my heart because it was a place that allowed me to pursue my love of music, my love of history, my short but intense interest in math, my interest in all sorts of different subjects of study, and my desire to always be neck deep in extra curricular activities.

I've also met wonderful friends through my involvements in different student organizations, and through Chi Omega Fraternity, and I've had the chance to work with incredible teachers and professors.

I am especially thankful for Julie for guiding me for those 4 years and also a couple years previous to my officially studying with her.
Without her, I probably would not have been able to pursue violin the way I am right now,
and for that, I am so incredibly thankful!  =)

and lil bro graduated with his high school diploma!
and I'm so glad I got to attend lil bro's graduation.
Yay for so many new and exciting beginnings!

I am so grateful that I got to go on a road trip to San Francisco with lil bro and grandma!
What a city.  I would love to live there someday.
and road trips with your loved ones are the best!

I am so grateful that I got to attend Emily's wedding!!
We've been friends since elementary/middle school, and it was so fun to celebrate with her as she began a completely new and exciting chapter in her life  =)
what a beautiful wedding--look at them glowing!  ;)   haha

I am so grateful that I was chosen to attend Foulger International Music Festival as one of their fellows!!
I had incredible performance opportunities with amazing musicians,
and met many wonderful people  =)
It was definitely a summer to remember!
with Allison Eldredge, Alex Beyer, and Hsin-Yun Huang.
favorite people  =)


I am so grateful that Linda came to visit me in Seattle!!
We've been best friends since middle school, and I'm so glad we got to spend a week together before she went off to NYC to study in Columbia (she's a smart one  ;)  haha)
I can't wait to see her again soon... 
because we will!  somehow  ;)

I am so grateful that I got accepted into Mr. Lin's Studio at Rice University Shepherd School of Music!
As I mentioned above, I was auditioning to pursue a Master's degree in Violin Performance,
and I was so ecstatic when I finally got the acceptance phone call from Rice.
In fact, the director of admissions told me that I had the best response he had ever heard  haha.
So glad I get to study with Mr. Lin at Rice and be a part of this amazing studio!

I am so grateful that daddy came to help me get settled in Houston.
I really don't know how I could have done it without him.
It was the first time I had to set up an apartment from scratch, get a car, register different things, and etc, 
and I would have been a serious mess if he had not been there.
so, thanks daddy!!
you can see a bit of our Houston adventures (mostly of Rice campus) here.  

I am so grateful that I had more opportunities for collaboration!
Rice hosts a Chamber Marahon every semester,
and this semester, I got to play in two different groups;
a piano, clarinet, and violin trio,
and a violin octet!
What wonderful people and what interesting music!  =)
Can't wait to collaborate with the trio again next semester
the Khachaturian Trio
Gran Turismo

I am so grateful to have met so many new friends!
It was such a blast to meet so many new people from so many different schools at Rice,
as well as reconnect with friends I've known before,
mostly from high school (Interlochen Arts Academy)

There have been such epic parties like the Texas style BBQ

the TURDUCKENHEN.  4 birds.

speaking of friends,,,
I am so grateful for my roomy, Amulet!
oh Amulet...  
I can't even count how many times we were both dying because we were laughing so hard...
though I can't remember what we were laughing about exactly,
(probably mostly at each other) 
we never fail to have these giggle/laughing episodes incredibly frequently.

Thank you for always trying to get me to practice,
then failing to practice yourself because we end up talking for hours on the floor in my room  haha

Though we are quite opposites, somehow we manage to coexist incredibly well,
and have a lot of fun doing so.  ;)
I'm so glad we are roomies Amulet, 
my Rice experience would never have been the same without you!

I am so grateful for wonderful friends and visitors to our apartment,
and the consequent baking sprees.
they are documented herehere, and here.

Grace and Abers
Making of MO with David and Abers

I am so thankful for the chance to join the Rice Ballroom Team.
I didn't think I would get to do ballroom at Rice,
and I can't express how elated I was when I found out that Rice also had a ballroom team!
It's been so fun getting to dance again and getting to know everyone on the team.
A few of our performances have been documented here, here, and here.

I am so thankful for David.
It's been so great getting to know him through ballroom dancing, running, baking, cooking, hosting parties, David offering to help fix the things that Amulet and I have broken in our apartment, working, etc, etc.
Thanks for always being so thoughtful and caring, being excited to try new and different things, and for being willing to carry on a conversation with minimal input from me while running--because I can't put together long sentences when I'm focusing on putting one foot before the other.  haha  =p
Here's to another year full of the many things we enjoy doing together!

and last, but not least,
I am SO incredibly thankful for my family.
I would not be who I am without them, and I am so blessed to have such a wonderful family.

My parents have always been incredibly supportive of everything I wanted to try,
--and trust me, there were many... my poor parents probably spent half of their lives in the car driving me back and forth to all of my extra curricular activities...  no joke--
and they have always been wonderful role models for me.
I am always so in awe at how they are able to juggle working incredibly hard, 
and yet always find time to enjoy life, have fun, and have time to spend with their loved ones.
happy 25th anniversary mom and dad!
much love!

and of course, my lil bro and my lil cuz.
they're both doing so well and growing into quite the gentlemen, if I may say so myself
--they always carry my luggage up to my room for me  ;)  haha
I am so proud of them for always working hard at whatever they set their minds to,
and growing into kind and respectful human beings.
After all, as our dad always says, you have to be a 'human' first before you become anything else.
--the 'human' is in quotations because when you say that in Korean, that means 'a kind and respectful human being'--

And finally, my baby.
 I could gush and gush about my baby, but I've already done that so much on this blog that I should probably refrain  haha  =p
(the gushing can be seen if you click on the link above)
but yes, so glad he is a part of our family.
what a character, this guy.  
quite the lovable little devil   ;)

Wow, what a long post,,,
but it was an incredible year full of so many blessings  =)
I hope all of you had a wonderful year as well,
and here's to 2013!
I can't wait to see what it has in store for us!
Happy New Year!

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