Friday, June 27, 2014

Nails of the Week: TheFaceShop

I love that my coworkers know me and know what I love. As a belated birthday present, my coworker surprised me with a gift box from The FaceShop. I've heard of them before, but am not familiar with their products. 

When I got the box, I thought I was going to get face products. To my delight, I opened the box and found my heaven.

A box filled with nail polish! She gave me three shades of pink, a mustard yellow, a light lime green, and glittery stars! Also in the box was a loofah and nail gem stickers.

I love them!! I must stay that the nail polish smelled like straight-up white out! The odor was intense, but the color amazing. 

I decided to do a look using all the nail polishes and show it to her. This is what I came up with.

The top is just a random mix of designs. I don't know why, but I title it "The Lizzy McGuire." I never thought I would do leopard (or is it cheetah?) on my nails, but I actually kind of like it :)
The bottom is called "The Jasmine." It describes my coworker: dainty, feminine, and soft. (That scary fuzzy thing was meant to be a bear. Haha)

Hope you enjoy :)


I AM BACK: Mini Hiatus Update

I am back!! 

It's been a long 10 days for me, but I'm back and I have a few posts lined up so stay tuned! :)

It's been quite a busy month with work, life, and everything in between. You know how it goes!

I was asked to spearhead a pilot program at a major Los Angeles hospital for the month of May. Somehow it spilled in to June. This meant another month of longer hours, more work, more stress and, of course, less time. But today was the last day of my pilot program!! I now have the evenings to myself again :) 

At work, I've been recognized as a leader and a good "face" for the team. I have definitely stepped my game up a notch. As much as I love my job, there is no room to grow after I get my license in social work (hopefully next year). Last week, I worked hard on my job applications to the county of Los Angeles. The pay is great and the stability is necessary if I wanted to buy a home and build a family. If you're familiar with LA County jobs, you would know that when positions open up, you need to jump on them because there are more "hiring freezes" than opportunities throughout the year. The application process just to get interviewed takes about 6 months to a year so I will be with my current job for a good while :)

June was also pretty eventful because I finished paying off my graduate school loans! I am officially debt-free! I am ecstatic. As you can imagine, it feels as though a burden has been lifted off my shoulders.

Everything in the past few months have included growth and opportunities. I am ready for the next chapter and adventure that lies ahead. 

(Picture taken by me)

(Picture found on Instagram)

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Nails of the Week: Puzzles

"I wanna make a jigsaw puzzle that's 40,000 pieces.And when you finish it, it says 'go outside.'"
- Demetri Martin

Sunday, June 15, 2014

OOTD: Being Bold(er), Being Me

I had an adventure day with one of my best friends and her toddler last Monday. For my outfit, I was feeling "different." I wanted to wear something out of my element. I wanted to put a style together that I've always wanted to do, but wasn't so gutsy to pull off. My best friend is very retro, very vintage, very hipster, very feminine, very indie, very hippy, very eclectic all combined into one. She's such an inspiration because she rocks everything she wears with such confidence. She's just bold and stands out in a crowd and is very secure with being herself. She's awesome!

Whenever I hang out with her, I am inspired to be more bold and step it up a notch with my wardrobe or makeup. I'd love to be as bold as she is, but part of me gets insecure about standing out. I've always played it "safe" and have always been so "mainstream" because it was easier. I knew that part of me wanted to express myself in bolder looks, but I was too timid to let it loose. Because of her, I'm learning to be more comfortable in my skin and in my style. 

you don't have to tell me. i know they're a bit blurry. oops =/

This is what I wore to the park which is funny because I spent the day with a toddler at a park, going to Costco getting "everything-on-it jumbo hot dogs" wearing basically all white. That just sounds like a recipe for stains and getting dirty! Somehow I walked away stain free!

Here is my outfit in detail (and sans blur):

It's a sheer two-toned sleeveless blouse with gold buttons for detailing

The upper two thirds is a beautiful lace of flowers

Gold buttons

Lace back

Close up of my pants

Top: Papaya Clothing
Pants: Leggings that my aunt gave me when I was in the Philippines
Shoes: JCPenny
Sunglasses: Marshalls
Earrings: Charlotte Russe
Lipstick: NYX

I'm sorry I forgot to take a picture of my makeup close up. My makeup was very pinup girl-esque. My best friend, who's amazing at makeup, even gave me kudos for being "on point" with my makeup. And those words coming from her was definitely a compliment and validation! 

This was also the first time I ever worn a red lip! I've always been so insecure about wearing a red lip, thinking it didn't suit me, thinking I could never pull it off. But this day, I decided to stop over thinking and just do it. 

Anything can look good on you if you feel good in it. 

This is something I hope to continue on no matter how insecure or how doubtful of myself I get at times.

I will do me. 


In The Kitchen: Baked "Fried" Pickles

Fried pickles are one of my most favorite foods!! I am a PICKLE MONSTER.

I LOVE pickles!!!

And when you combine fried-ness and ranch (I know, I know, not so good for you) to one of my most favorite foods, you get amazingess!!

I randomly discovered fried pickles after college at a bar. I never knew these things existed until then. They are soooo good, but soooo bad for you because they're deep fried and infused with sodium.

I love them so much but I wanted to be able to eat them and not feel totally guilty.

While looking up cooking videos of how to make them, I came across Baked "Fried" Pickles. I was so excited by this!! After failed attempts of not getting them crispy enough, I finally got myself to buy the magic ingredient! Panko! I know I "needed" it for that crunch, but I just never remembered to buy it until recenty.

And because of Panko, I've mastered the baked fried pickle!

Here's my process:

There are plenty of recipes online. This post isn't meant to be a real recipe post, but more just me sharing my obsession with pickles, my process, and an opportunity to look back at my pickle post. Haha. Talk about pickle love!

I use dill spears. I don't like sweet pickles. Dill for the win! And I don't make more than 3 spears at a time. I think 3 is good enough. I pat them as dry as I can get them. I cut them in half for the drenching process (and to make them last longer and make me feel like I'm eating more. LOL)

My working station - I took this picture after I started so that's why it looks a bit messy. I have a bowl of one beaten egg with a few teaspoons of milk. In one plastic bag, I have Panko. In the other bag, I have flour seasoned with garlic salt, cayenne pepper, and red pepper flakes. I do enjoy foods with a kick!

My process: Dip in flour, dip in egg, dip in Panko, and repeat once more

After 15 minutes

Put in the oven until golden brown, flip if necessary, and ta-da!

Pickle power! Haha

Here's the YouTube video I used as a guide. The woman is pretty hilarious:


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Nails of the Week: That 70s Show Inspired

I wanted to try something different this time. I wanted use light spring/summery colors. I wanted to try new techniques. I wanted to do something fun and a little out of my element.

I achieved this look through the sponge method. I've tried the sponge method in the past and it never looked close to decent. Yesterday, I decided to give it another go. And this was became of it.

The sponged effect reminded me of a retro 60s/70s tie-dye psychedelic hippy daisy era. I looked at it and thought "That 70s Show." I added a peace sign and flowers to complete the look.

Not the cleanest look, but I am pretty pleased with how it came out :)

I can't wait to explore new designs and new techniques.

Bring it on! :)


Thursday, June 5, 2014

Little Tokyo Mini Haul: Lip Scrubs

Last Sunday, my friends and I celebrated one of my dearest friend's birthday! We eventually found our way to a cosmetics store in  Little Tokyo called Maneki Neko. The birthday girl wanted to check out the vast NYX collection that they had.

As for me, I was trying to be good. My credit card bill this month was equivalent to three months worth of my usual spending. I don't know how this happened, but it did. What's done is done and now I must be a penny pincher for quite some time!

While at Maneki Neko, I did stumble upon a few items that I could not pass up.

I purchased white nail polish by Nabi Color and two lip scrubs by Beauty Treats. Each were $1.50. What a steal!

Here's my quick review on each:
1. Nabi Color: It's great!! I love it so far. The formula is a little thicker than what I am used to, but not bad. The color is opaque! LOVE
2. Beauty Treats Lip Scrub. I only opened the Wild Apple one. I LOVE it too!! For $1.50, it does a great job. I woke up the next day with really soft pillowy lips. I was impressed!

Not too long ago, I purchased this Mally Beauty's Gentle Lip Scrub.
(photo credit:

These are my thoughts on the two lip scrubs:

PRICE: Mally Beauty is $15. Beauty Treats is $1.50. Need I say more?

PROCESS: You massage MB into your lips and that's it. You have to wash off BT. Before I go to bed, I like to use the lip scrub. I like how with MB, you put it on and don't worry about any extra steps. Since I have to wash off BT, it makes me wonder if there's too many foreign stuff in it. Over time, I got lazy and just wiped off BT with a cotton pad instead of using water. I do have to use my normal chapstick after wiping off BT since I rubbed off the product.

MOISTURE: MB is really moisturizing. There's more balm than beads. It feels like you're putting on Vaseline. BT looks like a lip balm in a tub, but it has many fine beads. Because of this, you do get a rougher scrub. BUUUT, the next day, my lips were so soft after using BT.  The results were more subtle with MB. 

With Mally Beauty, you can't see the beads. They're the same color as the balm, but it's very fine and scattered throughout. There were times when I felt as if I got more balm than beads and did not get a real good exfoliation.

With Beauty Treats, you can see the beads everywhere!

SCENT: Of course BT wins because it has flavors. MB smells like cocoa butter which is one of my least favorite scents.

Winner is.....BEAUTY TREATS! You really can't beat the price and the results. Mally Beauty is a "gentle" scrub, but still...If I'm paying $15 for that little tube, I want to see results! 

After a few uses of the Mally Beauty scrub, I told myself that I would just make my own! It's not worth the $15. I am glad I found something that is affordable, smells good and actually makes my lips really soft!

I am so happy I so happened to stumble across these products!!


Monday, June 2, 2014

Because I'm Happy

Last week, one of my best friends from childhood and her baby surprised me at lunch with a beautiful and tasty belated birthday cake. Afterwards, we all went to the local park where I had the honor of buying his first park popsicle! It made my heart happy. 

My friend and I each have fond childhood memories of going to the neighborhood park, playing, and then getting an ice cream from the ice cream truck.

As simple as this picture is, I feel truly blessed to share this moment with this little guy. When they are this small, every "first" is an exciting milestone, big or small. And I feel incredibly happy to knock out one "first" from his life list.

As a kid, my favorite truck ice cream was a Sonic the Hedgehog popsicle. And for nostalgia's sake, I picked that one. He enjoyed a Jolly Rancher popsicle. Mmm

This past weekend so happened to be my best friend's birthday. We are 8 days apart. One of her best friends/childhood neighbor and I decided to plan a surprise birthday brunch at Bottega Louie in downtown LA. 

We all spent the afternoon enjoying each other's company and making more memories together. After lunch, we went to Little Tokyo where my surprise party co-planner purchased the cutest little umbrella for our nephew. 

I spy a little umbrella with legs. 

It was the cutest thing watching him figure out how to walk with the umbrella. Poor guy was bumping into things! Adorable!

The little things in life make me so happy! They are definitely life's greatest treasures.

Thank goodness for cameras, camera phones, and social media to allow us to document these moments and share them :)


Sunday, June 1, 2014

Nails of the Week: Pink and Gold

Last week has been quite busy with work! I think I am nearing my point of exhaustion and am in need of a vacation! Crazy thing is that I just came back from a vacation one month ago. I am probably just taking on way too much at work with this pilot program... Well, gotta do what I gotta do!

Here are the nails that I was rocking last week. 

I wanted something feminine this week. Something feminine and something spring/summery!

Top: Reverse french manicure
Bottom: Wannabe studs using gold nail polish

I hope you enjoy :)