Taken Transitional

What’s up readers, does my title make any sense?

I was so wanting to write another installment of my Filipino Kids Books series since it is Filipino-American History Month or maybe my favorite Filipino monsters since it’s Halloween season. But I did just share some notes from bell hooks’s Rock My Soul and haven’t made a fashion post in months. So I guess I’ll turn some goofing around {once again} into a looks post. 👀

I was just trying to make some Instagram content when I “borrowed” someone’s maxi dress. As I feared, I thought it made me look like I was wearing a parachute 😥 It wasn’t so bad once I belted it, but I still don’t like my arms.

 

It’s only now starting to cool down here, so I probably wouldn’t regularly pair a maxi with boots and a jacket, but it seems like catalogues and stuff go for really baggy, cozy looks. Don’t you? I tried, but I still felt like I’m about to stomp some grapes.

Fall look

In other news, I think my 10 year old laptop which is one of my big purchases with my own money has finally crapped out. I’m currently using my mom’s newer tablet, and o.m.g. The camera is so much better and has all of these new features like… taking pics in 1:1. This is why these blog pics are in the ratio; I usually have them in whatever my {not phone} camera is, but you can even edit on the tablet. 😭 

Maxi closeup

If only I was a cat that didn’t have to worry about bills or fashion. Or not liking the fonts in the watermark feature in an app. I feel like I’m always posting about how I don’t know what I’m doing or not liking a thing I’m using, but like… that’s what blogging is for! If I didn’t record it, I wouldn’t remember. And it’s kind of weird when everything just works out right? Isn’t suffering the point of life? 😂

affiliate links
Affiliate links
Vince Camuto maxiL.L. Bean jacketBCBG maxi
Guess bootsChinese Laundry sandalAldo satchel

What’s everyone’s plans for Halloween?

What To Do in Utah

Hi readers, have you had your cup of coffee?

I’m so sleepy right now. I’d a bit of the booze and have been on the computer all day. But here I am blogging! If you’ve been here, you know my mom went out to Utah to see my new nephew 💞 I shared what you might need/what you can fit in a carry-on for a week if you’ve a similar itinerary. Today, I’ll be sharing some of those travel pics of some neat locations their group visited besides the little baby.

Get Out in Nature

There seems to be a lot of parks in Utah! And not just green spaces but huge areas with mountains, if not mounds and other natural formations. My family’s party went to Arches National Park in the eastern part of the state. Apparently, there is a fee to enter, but the park has 50 “sites,” 2500 stone arches, and is open all day, every day except Christmas. You can go hiking, camping and may even see foxes, sheep, or even bears! This was over the summer that they went, so my mom doesn’t remember if this was actually a different location, but there are hot springs! From what she described, it sounds like they went to the Homestead Crater because it’s actually in a cave!

Eat

I’m sure there are a bagillion great places to eat just like any large space of land, but the group went to Wasatch Brew Pub. There is one in Salt Lake City and Park City. Reviews seem kind of mixed for their service and typical restaurant bar food, but everyone seems to enjoy their beer! Since the troupe was also Filipino, of course, they had to find some… as soon as they landed! One of their friends took them to Kubo Express which is about 20 minutes southeast of the Salt Lake airport.

Souvenirs

You wouldn’t forget, little ol’ me, would you? The person house and pet sitting? Or whoever you’re leaving behind, pick them up a magnet or postcard. I’m sorry I forgot who I read this from, but I love your idea of visiting second bookstores on your travels for your own souvenir. So when my mom asked if I wanted something, I figured why not make it her souvenir to me? 😁 In researching potential travels and their bookshops, I’ve encountered an interesting stop idea… comic book shops!

Mountains
Look… Florida is flat AF… mountains are super exciting for me, ok!? Even if I get nauseous!

Ride a Train

Okay, this might be something more common that I technically can do myself at any time. BUT 1) I haven’t and 2) the trains here are more for going hours out of town. Salt Lake has commuter trains. You can go to the next town in minutes (I’m sure if you live there, that can vary) for three dollars? Our city buses are not that efficient, I cry.

Thistle Ghost Town
Source: Atlas Obscura

Get Spooky

This idea, I admit, is just going by search engines rather than actual experience, but it IS October, and in this house, we celebrate our boogins all month long! 👻 These ideas are from Atlas Obscura which has a lot more unusual Utah destinations. My favorites from their list of 86 include: more than one ghost town, petroglyphs, peculiar art installations, and a dinosaur park.

I really wish I could go camping at some of these amazing parks! But I don’t have anyone to go with 🤔 Have you ever been or do you live in Utah? What did I miss?

Current read pin

Rock My Soul 1-4

I can’t speak for all Filipinos as anyone of an identity shouldn’t be expected (in general it’s a good idea, but we really should start using the noggins more than eyes about what is good for people). I’ve European heritage, have lived only in the US. I hash together vlogs about Filipino kids books I wish I knew existed as kid. I wrestle with my experience of the only Filipinos I know seeming incredibly reactionary and in what/who their interests are tied.

It’s difficult to come from a background whose poverty is fetisized not only by external paternal forces but those in our own culture, our individual selves. Pageants over policy. It describes not only what garners the retweets but what’s considered “pride.” Stick a flag emoji in your handle and share a video of sob story answering trivia.

I’d heard of bell hook’s Rock My Soul: Black People & Self-Esteem, and my mind would come back to it when I’d see such kind of contradictions. How can there be so much of this excitement for a people yet unwillingness for the betterment for the lesser statused of them? I don’t mean to take a black woman’s work and just insert myself into it, but 1) I’d have no idea where to turn for any kind of Filipino work like this 2) While specifics may be for black people, others can probably relate to more general themes and probably should connect how they’re related 3) That’s kind of what I intend to do.

Current read pin

1: Healing Wounded Hearts

In the opening chapter, bell hooks introduces why it’s no wonder black people may have “wounded” self-worth. Slavery and segregation have imposed observable white supremacist violence, but because self-esteem or the wellbeing of peoples’ souls aren’t very valued, the psychological impact of things like beauty standards and more namely, integration have not been studied and discussed.

2: Lasting Trauma

Although science has been a tool of racism that can be suspicious, mental health must be a part of liberation. Everyday violence reenacts trauma and without proper strategies that include decolonized thinking, healing can’t take place. hooks also critiques conservative blame and denial of black pain by noting their failure to connect ongoing trauma (like PTSD) to certain behavior and a perpetuation of racism by judging black people more harshly for this.

bell hooks quote

3: Ending the Shame That Binds

The shame of this chapter is that being (physically) ugly in white supremacist patriarchy. Shame conditions to intimidate especially vulnerable lower-statused people. The author wonders if black employment gains have come at the cost of psychological ones. Colonized minds value the imitation of acting and looking white.

I hate to bring this up but seeing as how white people have no problem, I’m reminded of mail-order brides. I can’t say the degree to which it’s encouraged culturally, but just from existing in the US, when you look at who is famous, who is rewarded, who has resources, who receives justice (who is denied), who is fawned over for doing the which actions, whose actions are met which such unmatched animosity, it’s easy to imagine the need to keep women impoverished financially and psychologically to pimp out for cheap labor. And how is this working out? Are we still getting beaten, raped, and stuffed into the backs of freezers? It’s no wonder that men that buy women stand with macho politicians.

4: Living With Integrity

Integrity is defined by Stephen Carter and Nathaniel Branden as being able to tell right and wrong and acting on it. Unfortunately, we live in a world where it seems like greed and other unethical behavior is rewarded. So to exist or even succeed, people must assimilate to bad behavior. However, if one comes from decolonized background, the imbalance of behavior and values create crisis and hypocrisy which Branden says is self-invalidating. There’s no integrity without honesty; lying spreads to other areas of one’s life.

I know it’d be nice and clean to end at chapter five, but this is already 600 words, and I’d like to include thoughts from the preface where hooks wonders why she and her siblings, who were more economically and academically privileged than their parents, were more psychologically fragile. I totally relate seeing my mother and others uproot their lives across the world, yet I have severe anxiety. I can only attribute it to Mom and at least one other woman I’m thinking of grew up in environments where everyone is literally family. Obviously, family is not synonymous with support, so I wonder about how toxic behavior is dealt.

I probably could’ve written a lot more but I read and didn’t write and already started 3 other books on here and don’t want so many posts on one book, so perhaps in the future when I re-read!