Thursday, October 16, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Tokyo and Osaka, Japan

It has been months since I visited the Land of the Rising Sun but I still find myself dreaming about that trip. Looks like Japan has captured my heart and let me show you why (through pictures).

Even the different grounds were picture-worthy

Monday, October 13, 2014

Great Finds in 3 Specialty Stores

There's something so satisfying about purchasing small, seemingly trivial yet really useful things. I noticed that I've accumulated such purchases which I've been using or consuming frequently.

The Store: TRUE VALUE HARDWARE STORE
The Product: NITE IZE GEAR TIES
There are a lot of random yet awesome finds in this store, from the usual extension cord with USB ports to the very popular mason jars. I don't frequent True Value but since it is my dad's haven, I get to shop there from time to time. However, this time, I went there with my friend (who introduced the product to me) to buy Nite Ize Gear Ties.

I know the regular cable ties or twist ties are a simpler solution but I prefer these for its aesthetics (wire interior + rubber exterior) and because it's reusable, handy and not too flimsy that it'll easily get lost or broken.


Nite Ize Gear Ties are available in various colors and sizes. The ones pictured above measures 3 inches. True Value Hardware Store Philippines has several branches and you may find the branch nearest to you by clicking here.

The Store: BEAUTY BAR
The Product/s: HAPPY SKIN COSMETICS
I usually try to avoid visiting this store because I can't control myself and I often end up splurging. There's just too many interesting items! Haha. Anyway, I wanted to buy a present for my cousin who lives abroad and I wanted to give her a Filipino product that she would be super excited to use. There was only one brand that I had in mind - Happy Skin Cosmetics! I got her several Happy Skin Cosmetics lipsticks and a blush. Of course, I can't leave without buying some Happy Skin products for myself. These are what I got:


Shut Up and Kiss Me Lipsticks in Girls Night Out (berry shade) and Sunset Kiss (coral shade), as well as the Feeling Sculptacular Face Contour Kit. I love that the lipsticks are both affordable and long-lasting. You can check their products via Beauty Bar's website or Happy Skin's website.

The Store: HEALTHY OPTIONS
The Product: THE CHIA CO. CHIA SHOTS
My family frequents Healthy Options for their offering of personal care products and healthier snack alternatives. I often find delicious dark chocolate and baked chips here. I've seen the Chia Shots a lot before but it was only now that I bought one. I think you're supposed to consume the whole sachet in one go but I just use half a teaspoon for my smoothies. Usually a smoothie and cereals aren't enough sustenance for me in the morning but the first time I had a smoothie with Chia seeds, I easily felt full. A little background on Chia seeds, it's a dietary fiber that is rich in omega-3, protein, and antioxidants. So that means it's good for the heart and the digestive tract. So, I'm quite positive that my quick satiety was due to this. :)
A few more tips, drink lots of water when you take Chia as it can cause stomach cramps and diarrhea (it is a dietary fiber, after all). Also, the Chia Shots sold in Healthy Options are by sachet.

Hooray for more Healthy Options branches! You may view their store list here.

There you have it! Those are some of the random stuff that I've recently bought and have been enjoying and using endlessly. Hope you guys give it a try, too. :)


Chia Shots Image Source: https://birchbox.co.uk/the-chia-co-chia-shots-10-x-8g

Monday, October 6, 2014

The Future of TV is Smart

Smart TVs are not yet very big in the Philippines but since the new televisions being sold in the market are gearing towards that trend, getting one has become an easy choice. That was how it was for me when I got my Smart TV. I was looking at getting a new TV and the salesmen at the store started talking me into getting a Smart TV instead. The only thing I knew about Smart TVs at that time was that they had internet and since the price wasn't far off regular televisions, I decided to get one. Well, imagine my surprise when I got home and started exploring its features!


I got a 32" Samsung Smart TV. It was on sale at that time so I got it for just a little more than Php21,000.00. For those of you who don't know what a Smart TV is, it is basically a TV with built-in WIFI.

Setting it up was very easy, I only had to sync it with my home wifi, was done in just about 5 minutes and was ready to explore my new tv. It functions just any tv, but the moment you click that Smart Hub icon in the remote, you are welcomed into a whole new world of possibilities.

The Smart Hub allows you to browse the internet while you watch TV. More than the actual net browser, you see Apps which is like those you have on your android/ios devices.


There are preset items but you can also download more from the categories just like when you go to your Google App Store/ Itunes.

Apart from the Apps, I absolutely love the social media function of the TV which allows me to check Facebook, Twitter, etc WHILE watching tv.

I remember watching FIBA and checking my twitter feed at the same time. It was so cool!

The TV also allows me to be more fit, with a lot of apps on fitness, with access to exercise videos on youtube, vimeo, etc. 

Right now I use my tv a lot for watching videos on youtube. I have actually synced it with my laptop so now I can search for videos and stream it on my tv! If you even have a Samsung device, you can use it as a remote and what you there will be reflected on your tv! So cool!
Of course, there's the traditional internet option which allows you to browse regular sites online. Does this look familiar? 


Hehe. Plus, note that I have a movie streaming on the lower right side. So you can continue watching tv while browsing the internet!

And oh, it even has a camera function which allows you to make Skype calls! UNBELIEVABLE! I wish I could try it but it's a little selfish and only syncs with specific Samsung camera models. Still, just the thought that that is possible is enough!

If you don't want to use the internet, you can also use the TV to watch movies/shows from your USB. I like this option a lot because it plays .mp4s so if you have video clips that you took with your phone, you can play it on your tv without having to convert it to .avi/mpeg formats. Saves a lot of time! 

I am so happy with my Smart TV! It is one of the best purchases I've ever made. The first few weeks I couldn't gushing about it because it is such an amazing product. I'm not very techie but I really like what I've been offered. Truly, the future of TV is Smart!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Young-looking Skin

You know you've heard it so many times before, "it's never too early to take care of your skin" but a good number of people don't really take it to heart. I had a lot of pimples in High School so being particular about my face started early for me. I've been an avid user of St. Ives' Apricot Scrub cause I believe my pimples disappeared because of that. I also don't have pimple scars which I attribute to my use of the scrub. For so many years, the only thing I use on my face is the scrub, and occasionally an eye cream. But now that I've turned 25, I'm starting to explore the world of night creams.

I didn't want to spend so much for my first night cream so I limited my research to the drugstore brands. L'Oreal is an easy choice cause I've used L'Oreal before and I never had any problem with it. My greatest concern was that other products (like Olay) irritates my skin, probably cause I have sensitive skin and I'm still young. So with the choice of brand decided on, the next was to find the right product to use.


I did my research and was advised that when you're still in your twenties, you should stick to products that moisturize and stay away from the whitening products cause those products are too potent for young skin. I didn't want to get just a moisturizer, I wanted a night cream which is a moisturizer plus more. I mean, if you can get a product which has more benefits, I say go for it.

Choosing something from L'Oreal was easy cause there's only two night creams, the whitening kind and the one I got-- Revitalift.


I like that it is a firming cream. Lately, I have been choosing products that has lifting qualities in lotions, bath washes, etc. I find that when you grow older, your goal is not to have soft skin, the focus is to prevent sagging skin.

I've only been using it for a week now so I can't say if there's any improvement. Besides, it's more for prevention so the effects will only be visible in the coming years. But I like that it's such an easy product to use. It isn't very thick and absorbs quickly, which I really like. I am not a fan of lotions for the reason that I don't like sticky products (and we live in the Philippines) so having a face cream that absorbs quickly is a good thing.

How about you girls, do you use night/day creams too?


Sunday, September 21, 2014

Colorless lacks color

A lot of my friends know how fond I am of Haruki Murakami's books so you could imagine how excited I was to get my hands on his latest novel, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.

The book was about a middle-aged man, Tsukuru who went about looking for his high school best friends to find out why they decided to suddenly abandon and stop being friends with him sixteen years ago. The plot itself is very exciting since it tackled issues of loneliness, hope, self-discovery and friendship.


I got the book the first week it was released and finished it under two weeks. The first chapter sold it for me and I have to admit it was an easy read but as I read more and more of it, I found it... colorless. I was trying to determine why I didn't find the story compelling so I kept reading but it didn't get better for me. There was something missing in it. And I can't put a finger to what it is exactly. I'm thinking maybe something got lost in the translation (it's not by one of my favorite Murakami translators) but I kinda had a feeling that it was rushed. And in a way, it was a bit predictable which is surprising because the thing I love most about Murakami is that he keeps me guessing and the endings are never what I had in mind.

I can't speak badly of Murakami because I love him too much but suffice it to say, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki isn't one of my favorites from him. I am kinda disappointed cause I waited a while for his next book but I hear he's coming out with another one in a few months so I'm excited for that! 

Colorless may not be for me, but I still love you Murakami!

Related Posts

Blog Widget by LinkWithin