Getting productive

Time is flying by and before I know it I’ll be heading to Korea with my sister, which means that I don’t have a lot of time left to prepare for TOPIK anymore. As I have mentioned before, I don’t have a lot of time at the moment, but I am finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel! While it is tempting to just wait until things go completely back to normal, I have decided to start upping my study game now, and I am crazily excited about it.
I have been planning my new study schedule for a few days now and I guess today is my first official day following my plan.
The key to being able to follow a study plan is to constantly change it up based on what you are able to do (or simply based on what you feel like doing) at the moment. I think that many people forget to be honest to themselves and therefore end up making unrealistic plans, which is of absolutely no use to anyone.

Anyway! My study schedule starts with the Italki Language MindBuilder Challenge! Yes I did indeed sign up for it, and I already have my 12 lessons booked with 효진쌤 & 혜선쌤! The first 1,5 weeks will probably be terribly exhausting since my schedule is already pretty booked, but I have tried worse and feel confident that I can power through it with a good result. And after that I have a full weeks vacation without too many plans, so I will be able to study and recharge my energy. I’m ready!
The time I spend in the bus every morning will now be dedicated to my story books and my trip home after work will be dedicated to my favorite podcasts and audio books.
As for study books, I am currently going through TTMIK’s Korean phrasebook for travelers, while making some notes for my sister, however I pretty much already finished it, so I guess it’s not really a part of my new schedule.
I will be using following books for my plan this time:
– Useful Chinese characters for learners of Korean
– 한국어 문장 쓰기의 모든 것
– Korean grammar in use Intermediate + Advanced

I’m also trying to decide whether or not to start 서강 한국어 쓰기 2. I can’t really decide.
I will be studying and trying to learn new things, but more than that, my focus will be on reviewing and closing the gaps that I have when it comes to using the Korean language. This is something that I have a tendency to skip pretty often and of course that affects my learning. So I’m not really making any rules about how much or how long I study every day with this plan, my only rule is that I need to study something new and something old from each book, every single day. I’ll also be making a bigger effort to use my Quizlet app during my short free periods during the day and in general try to be more productive with the time I have available for language learning!

Time flies so fast lately and I have to really run if I don’t want to miss out on anything, but I know that things will become better in just a few weeks and I know for sure that I will appreciate all of my efforts as soon as I sit down to take the TOPIK exam again.
More than anything, I hate regretting the things that I did not do, so here’s to being productive!

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A day of accomplishments

Today has been such an insanely busy day, and not much ended out as I had planned it. I guess that isn’t really anything new, haha!

Early this morning I took my written drivers licence test, which I was supposed to take over a month ago. Sadly though, an administrative mistake happened and I ended up having to wait until now – without any theoretical of practical driving lessons. This has been causing me so much stress since driving well doesn’t come naturally to me and putting everything on pause like that for a month, meant that I lost the almost non-existing confidence I had in my driving skills.
Anyway, I finally took the test this morning and passed without much difficulty – Yay! This means that I am now one step closer to finishing this whole drivers licence process (So many hours that will soon be available in my daily schedule! Not to mention all the time that I will save when I no longer have to take the bus!), as well as a step closer to being able to join ‘my’ Taekwondo class!

When I got home I had a ton of boring things to do before my italki lesson with 효진쌤. We haven’t had a lesson together in two months because of schedule conflicts, and I was really looking forward to seeing her again. She’s a lot of fun!
I ran around like crazy to get everything done, and then just a few minutes before the lesson, my driving instructor called and wanted to have a driving lesson with me immediately after my italki lesson. Sigh.. I was terrified since it had been so long since I had a driving lesson, but I knew it would only get worse if I waited so I agreed, and just like that the rest of my day became busy.I’m really proud of myself for not postponing and it looks like I might take the final driving test withing 2-3 weeks. Exciting and horrifying!

When I finally got home, I ate dinner and sat down to confirm the italki lesson from earlier, since I hadn’t had time when it ended, and then I noticed this!
Turns out today’s lesson was my 100th lesson through italki! If that isn’t an accomplishment then I don’t know what is!
italki100

Even though I hope that tomorrow will be less hectic, I’m still pretty happy with the results from today! Now It’s time to go to bed and start on a fresh note tomorrow. If things go as planned then I will be able to study a lot tomorrow! Just what I need after a stressful day!

Oh, and I still haven’t completely decided what to do about the italki language challenge, but I think I will take part in it this year too!

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The (italki) Language Mindbuilder Challenge

As 2017 is beginning and most of the people around me are busy with their new years resolutions, I myself is busy working, studying and planning my first trip to Korea. Even though I enjoy doing things in my own pace, I’m not really too bothered by my busy schedule. I enjoy most of what I am doing at the moment, and the things that I don’t quite like, are only stepping stones to the things that I really want to do, so I’m fine with a little suffering (sorry, I’m in such a dramatic mood, haha!)
As I am starting to work my way through this new and exciting year, I have been thinking a lot about time management and what I need to do better in order to make more room in my schedule and this made me think about the Italki language challenge (Read more about the challenge here). If you have followed me on the blog for a while, then you will probably remember that I joined their first language challenge of 2016, and I ended op completing the biggest goal, which was having 30 hours of italki lessons in a little over a month (Read more about that here). I had a ton of fun and I certainly can’t deny that it was very helpful to my learning. I definitely do no regret doing it! However, I am struggling to decide whether or not to do it again this year. First of all, I had a full month off from work last year, which meant that the time aspect didn’t really matter, but this year I only have a week off in February. The smallest goal this time is completing 12 hours, and finding room for 12 hours during the 28 days of February, can be a bit of a challenge with my schedule this year. Also, there’s also the economical aspect. I spent quite a lot of money last year, because I wanted to accomplish the 30 hour goal. And even just 12 hours, can become quite pricey.
However, on the other side – wouldn’t it be a great tradition to create with myself? Start every new year with an italki challenge! Also, I already tend to spend a lot of money on my love for languages. Just think about the amount of money I have spent on books, and even worse, shipping! Yikes! I guess it’s pretty much the same. And it’s not like I can’t afford it to be completely honest.
Maybe I could even find yet another teacher and switch between them all. I bet that would be a fun way to keep myself on my toes!
Also, it certainly would be a great way to prepare myself a bit for my Korea trip this summer. Not to mention that I honestly don’t feel like I did my absolute best, during last years challenge.

Ah.. What to do, what to do.. Should I make room for the challenge in my schedule this year?

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Last goal of 2016

The year is slowly coming to an end and as I do every year, I have been thinking about how to end the year in the best possible way. I started thinking about this last week and decided that I wanted to end 2016 with a feeling of having accomplished a lot in my language learning journey. And to enhance that feeling, I decided that my last goal of 2016 should be to finish 5 of the books that I am currently studying with. I’m always studying with a ton of books and e-books at the same time, because I just can’t wait to get started, when I buy something new. So this way I can put away 5 books from my ‘books-I-am-currently-studying-with’ shelf (Yes. I do actually have such a shelf! It’s on my desk!) and move them to my ‘books-that-I-have-already-finished-but-keep-near-by’ shelf (Yes that’s real too).
I decided to finish these 5 books:
1. 서강 한국어 쓰기 1 – I only have 1 chapter left in this book as well as a few pages I want to review, so I guess this wont be too difficult to accomplish!
2. 백설공주 – I still had 7 stories left in this book when I made the goal, but since my reading pace is slowly becoming decent and the stories are pretty short, this too wasn’t very difficult. I read the last story yesterday! Success!
3. 빈도별 토픽 – This will be one of my bigger tasks since I’m only about 70% finished with the book. However the book is very easy to understand and doesn’t have a lot of assignments compared to my other books, so it is definitely doable!
4. Korean Q&A sentence patterns – I only need to finish 3 chapters in this one, and it’s pretty easy compared to what I usually study with, so this will be doable as well.
5. Korean folk tales & Aesop’s fables – I’m not sure why I never got around to finishing this book but I guess now was right the time! I only had 4 stories left and I finished them all this week.

So 2/5 books have been cleared and I have a week left. It’ll definitely take up a lot of my time, but since my holiday break started today, I am quite OK with that! I will also be visiting my home town next week, which means that I need to entertain myself for the 2×5 hour train ride – Perfect timing! Not to mention that I will be staying with my sister who has work everyday til 4pm, so I’ll have plenty study opportunities there as well.

Time to fix those loose ends before the year ends! Wish me luck!
Merry Christmas guys!

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Re-entering the world of dramas and books

With all the hectic things that have been happening in my life lately combined with the fact that Christmas is always super busy at my house, as well as the fact that I have had some self-caused issues improving my Korean skills (I talked about that in this post), has caused me to feel really stressed when it comes to studying Korean. I feel like I don’t have time enough and since I ‘wasted’ (but not really though) a lot of time, I’m constantly worrying about whether or not I can succeed in the goals I made earlier this year. Because of these doubts I have been focusing a lot on progressing and being effective with the time that I do have, and it seems that this has caused me to completely forget to enjoy the language in itself, as well as appreciate the things that I already know about this beautiful language.
I haven’t even thought about watching dramas or movies in several months and I haven’t picked up any of my beloved books from the Indigo series, since the beginning of August – these two things used to be some of my favorite activities!

I realized this while dusting of my shelves during my weekly Sunday cleaning sessions, and I suddenly felt an urge to read one of my books. It really has been a while!
So yesterday during my lunch break, I decided to continue reading the webtoon that I put aside a while ago to save time, and I truly enjoyed just casually reading without putting more thought or energy into it. When I got home from work and had finished dinner, I started watching 도깨비, and immediately found myself enjoying it. I watched both episodes and I’m looking forward to the next episode. I didn’t get to ‘really’ study, but I really enjoyed myself and that’s important too!
It made me feel a lot more positive and energized for ‘actual’ studying. So this morning I picked up 백설공주 from my shelf and brought it with me to work. Despite it’s title, it’s actually a compilation of small and famous stories like ‘Little red riding hood’ and ‘Rapunzel’. It’s actually quite lovely! I totally recommend this for people who are new to reading Korean books or who simply get bored too fast to read long stories. Especially since it’s well-known stories that don’t demand too much attention and focus from you.
Anyway, I finished reading the first story in the book, in the bus on my way home, and now I feel happy, re-energized and ready to do my best during a study session with 혜선쌤!
I guess it’s all about balance.
To celebrate I decided to go shopping a bit on Gmarket, even though I really shouldn’t. So I bought a new study book and 3 more books to add to my 인디고 아름다운 고전 시리즈, collection. As superficial as it may sound, shopping does wonders to my general mood!
And that’s ok too!

All these hectic things will be finished soon and I know that I will be able to study more like I’m used to, so for now I’m just going to relax and keep a balance between studying and just enjoying the language.

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Christmas vocabulary

HI GUYS!
It’s finally that time of the year again! Ah yes, as you might have noticed by now, I am that friend who is always overly excited about Christmas.
I’m not planning on too many Christmas rants on the blog, however of course I need to take advantage of my Christmas love, and use it to learn some Korean! And you guys can use it too! Since there’s a lot of differences between Christmas in Denmark and Christmas in Korea, it seems to naturally become a good topic to discuss with language partners and friends. You will also naturally see Christmas related words during this season, so maybe you want to prepare yourself a bit. Maybe you just love Christmas as much as I do! No matter what your reason might be, I have prepared a long list of words that might become useful to you guys during this season!

First, here’s the list without translations. I recommend looking up the meaning of the words on your own, as it help you remember them better when you have to write them yourself. However, if you prefer having the translations immediately, then you can download the word list as a PDF here along with their translation!
NOTE, I have not used Romanization anywhere, because I personally believe that it’ll only slow you down if you depend on it too much. 🙂
I also created a study course on Memrise, so if you want to study with this list, you can do it through Memrise, via your computer or smartphone! Just click here!
Also, A HUGE THANKS to 효진쌤 (너무너무너무 고마워요! 역시 효진쌤 짱이당~) who proofread my list to make sure that I didn’t publish complete nonsense!
Lastly, please remember that I choose the words based on my own logic and experiences. Christmas in Denmark is very different from Christmas in America, so while Turkey is relevant in America, Duck is more relevant in Denmark, and therefore the relevant words will obviously change from country to country. Feel free to add the words you personally find relevant.
Enjoy guys~

크리스마스
크리스마스 트리
선물
산타 할아버지 
메리 크리스마스  
순록
휴일
케이크  
사탕  
요정
칠면조 고기 
눈   
크리스마스 카드 
썰매
북극  
굴뚝 
예수 그리스도 
크리스마스 캐럴   
베들레헴 
기념하다  
눈사람 
벽난로
겨우살이 / 미슬토우
크리스마스 양말 
호랑 가시 나무  
지팡이 사탕  
종   
루돌프 사슴코  
눈송이    
장식  
생강쿠키 집  
진저맨 / 생강쿠키 사람  
화환 
천사
양초   
촛불  
불빛   
켜다 
촛대 
자선단체 
밤 
석탄
쿠키 
쿠키 커터
12월(십이월) 
에그노그  
선물을 교환하다   
가족  
장작 
서리  
과일 케이크  
가랜드
거위 고기
안부 
빨간색  
녹색
흰색  
금색 
은색 
핫초코 / 코코아  
행복  
껴안다 
얼음 
고드름 
딸랑딸랑/짤랑짤랑
기쁨    
징글벨  
크리스마스 전등  
사랑
벙어리장갑 
호두까개 
쿠키통 
퍼레이드  
소나무  
솔방울   
리본    
눈뭉치  
크리스마스 쇼핑      
목도리   
내리다  
포장하다   
풀다    
방한화 / 겨울 부츠

하트  
전통  
노래  
겨울
소원  
포장지  
나비리본
나비 넥타이 
오리 고기  
대림절 일요일  
대림절 달력   
크리스마스 리스   
반짝거리다   
크리스마스 모자  
평화
대림절 초
춥다

 

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Who would’ve thought

Lately I have been very aware of all the things in my life that are precious to me. That usually happens this time of the year, however this year it seems that the majority of these precious things are related to my language learning journey, in one way or another.
Through my Korean studies I have met a whole bunch of amazing people that I would now hate to be without. I have met people through language exchange, through italki teachers, through this blog as well as through fellow students. I went on a trip to London and made a ton of great memories. I took chances I never thought I would even consider taking and I have learned about a new culture and a new way of thinking.
And now, I’m starting yet another adventure! Because I’m joining a Taekwondo class! Wait wait wait.. Just how did I end up here?
Well. When I was young(er) I used to love any movie that involved martial arts and there was even a Taekwondo class starting up near my house, but my mom didn’t allow me to take part in it. Since then I have thought about joining different classes like kickboxing or self-defense classes, and when I jokingly told my Korean friend that I would start learning karate, he responded with ‘I won’t allow that! At the very least you have to stay loyal to Korea and choose Taekwondo instead!’ While this too was just a joke, I ended up actually giving it some consideration. Around a week later I actually discovered a club pretty close to me by accident and started to think about it more seriously. I ended up contacting the club and even though I can’t start yet (Transportation is really an issue when you live in the countryside like I do, so I have to wait until I’m finished getting my drivers licence) and there’s no official start-ups around the time where I can start, they allowed me to sign up anyway and then join them as soon as I can. So there you have it. I’m joining a Taekwondo class around the new year!
A Korean friend reminded me of my interest in martial arts and my interest in Korea led me towards Taekwondo. I probably wouldn’t be here at all if it weren’t for my Korean language learning journey.
Who would have known that my life would look this way, today? Let’s all go on more adventures!

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