Saturday, July 28, 2012

Pastel candy nails and matching MacBook

My NOTM are alternating pretty candy pastels. Mint from The Face Shop (it's absolutely horrible- streaky beyond belief and oxidizes GREEN) and a pale pink from OPI (super smooth and perfect application-wise, but too sheer, resulting in ten million layers that take forever to dry).

I also got this opaque (it was supposed to be translucent, though) Robins' Egg Blue (yes, that is a valid colour name- Google it) matte MacBook Air case because I got one for uni (and also because my previous MacBook is ancient and hardly working). It's still in the shinkwrap plastic in the photo, so it seems shiny, but it is assuredly velvety matte in the heavenliest colour ever (of course- it's my favourite colour). It's also close to what my nails would look like if they didn't oxidize (looks less greenish in the photo because I took that pic right after painting my nails, before it turned green).

In case anyone is interested, I got it from evilBay, and it comes with a silicon keyboard cover in teal.

More pics of it in action.

And the unboxing- OS X Lion

On a side note, it's D-MINUS 27!!! I'm leaving in less than 4 weeks!!!!! I've stocked up on lotsa supplies for Tokyo already, so I'll do a post on that soon~


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Recent job and what I've been doing

I mentioned recently that I had an event job on the 19th of July. It was with a bunch of my council (SA) girls and one other girl, so it was like a pseudo 33rd reunion~

I won't elaborate too much, because I doubt my readers wanna hear me talk about a job. If I had to summarise it, I'd say I was generally an emcee. Even though this job was at Sentosa too (had a golf event there in May that resulted in a hideous sunburn and tan), THANK GOD it was drizzling and hardly sunny, and I didn't tan at all~ I did take precautions and slathered my face with SPF before leaving the house, but I don't own body sunblock so I was worried, but it was fine in the end.

After we cleaned up and we finished our work, we of course took the chance to camwhore and use the props we had there for the event, so much silliness ensued. ^o^

All photos courtesy of Marilyn (Chew), the one who made this job and reunion possible for us.

The council girls went to ViVo after that to claim our free Sephora membership gift (Sherrie and I), have soup (the rest), and shop! I even went to Raffles City after that to meet my parents, and surprisingly didn't feel like shopping at all. I think I was tired from working, even though the job was short and hardly physically exhausting. It's just my allergy to work, I guess.

That aside, what I've been doing recently (actually, it was only for about 3 days, the week before) is studying Japanese. Most of you don't know that I actually self-learnt Japanese language passively over 3 years, so I can converse, read and write, albeit not at a high enough level to study my major in. As such, I will not be exempt from JLP (Japanese Language Program) courses in uni, but I will probably start off in a more advanced course than the rest of them who have never properly studied Japanese either.

Anyway, I wanted to get a head start (funny, my Secondary Three holiday lesson program was actually called Headstart) and brush up my existing Japanese skills so that I can at least get around Japan without being totally illiterate. Living in a country that uses a different language than one is accustomed to will be stressful, so I've been watching more drama to naturalise myself to the language. I'm so used to Japanese now that I'm beginning to think and dream in Japanese. *_*

I don't think my Japanese language skills are adequate at all, but I was still able to get through an entire online guide in less than 3 days. Of course, the rarely-used grammar flew over my head, but it's not like I'll need it outside of lessons, so I'll just ignore it for now.

If anyone is interested in learning Japanese by yourself, I highly recommend this site: It's extremely detailed, clear, and easy to follow. Each lesson also helps me learn new terms and kanji, which makes it even better, because while my grammar might be fine, my vocabulary is sorely lacking (well, I actually know most of the useful words, I just don't know the kanji- I pick it all up from listening to conversations).

So yes, that's basically what I've been doing. I also wanted to show the photos from my job because I feel like lately, there haven't been any pictures of me on this blog... Right. Okay.

Incidentally, it's D-MINUS 30 now, and I only have a single digit number of free days in August left to meet people for farewells after booking out my schedule. If you want to meet me in August, you'd best contact me soon.

Until then,


Friday, July 20, 2012

Haraju-cute! @ Guardian

Most Singaporean girls who follow my blog would be aware of Watsons' Shibuya Gals corner in various major branches of the store. It has been generally successful, and Dolly Wink lashes used to be perpetually sold out. Now it seems that Guardian, a store of similar genre, has produced its own version- Haraju-Cute!

Haraju-Cute!'s tagline appears to be "きれいになりたい女の子!あつまれ!", or in English, "All the girls who want to be pretty, gather 'round!". Apparently, Haraju-Cute! was launched on the 18th of July, and I came across it in Raffles City on the 19th.

Haraju-Cute! stocks some brands that Shibuya Gals doesn't, such as the reecntly-debuted Rola-endorsed Brigitte. I personally am a huge Rola fan (she is so epicly hilarious in her own whole new level of bimbocity), so I'm excited to see Brigitte reaching Singapore. Haraju-Cute! also stocks the wildly-popular-in-Japan Diamond Beauty, which is great. Through this, many Japanese drugstore brands (which are a whole different level of quality from western drugstore brands, mind you- Japanese drugstore quality could rival that of western department stores) are being introduced to Singapore, so it's an awesome thing. Haraju-Cute! also surprisingly carries AB Mezical Fiber, which means that Singaporeans could potentially begin to gravitate away from the glaringly obvious double-eyelid stickers and towards the more discreet (and expensive) eyelid fibers.

Other brands they stock are not all that new to Singapore, such as Heroine Make, which Watsons also carries, albeit not in the Shibuya Gals section, but rather the Kawaii Corner section. I'm really glad to see so many Japanese brands increasingly fill local stores.

Without further ado, LOTS of pictures (click on them to enlarge)! Click below!!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Bags, glasses and other randomnities

Random photo of my Q-pot jewelry and a gachapon koala macaron cellphone strap ☆

I did say that I would do a post on the haul my maternal grandfather brought back for me (bags, sunglasses and boots), but you've already seen the sunglasses here, and both pairs of boots got sent back to Milan to change because they didn't fit me. Then, of the two bags I got, my mom ended up taking one of them, so of the entire mini-haul, I'm only left with one bag to take pictures of:

This is the Marc Jacobs Pretty Nylon Knapsack in Iris Multi. The other bag is exactly the same, but in a different print. I plan to use this nearly everyday for university because it's A4 and can fit my laptop, papers and files etc.

This looks a lot brighter and neon-er than the website, and even more so in this photo because of the flash and the colour-boost I edited in. Nonetheless, I'm very happy with it and can't wait to start using it~

While we're on the topic of bags, I thought I'd share what my current going-out bag is. I got this during my hiatus from this blog, so I never got a chance to brag about it. It's the Samantha Thavasa Aimi bag in some winter collection leather and moko-moko trim. My parents got this for me as a reward for my SAT results and 2 As for 'A'-levels. ^o^

Another recent get would be these ASOS glasses that I mentioned I was waiting for to go on sale. They ended up going on sale a few days after that post, so I got them! Unfortunately, they're a little narrow and tight for me. I could bring it to an optician to adjust, but I'm still contemplating what I wanna do with this since I'm not in total love with it.

click to enlarge

Also, I've been really bored recently, so I've been doing all sorts of planning, financial accounting for the coming year of university and other personal admin-related stuff. I love organising and planning stuff, so I went ahead and planned out the entire itinerary for my family's one-week trip to Tokyo (after which I will be staying on while they return to Singapore).

It was really supposed to be more of a practical trip than a leisure holiday, because we were going there mainly to set up my life in Tokyo- register as a resident, open a bank account, get a phone etc. I also managed to get ICU to give us a professional tour of the campus so that my parents can get an idea of where I'll be for 4 years.

Unfortunately, I just found out that I can't register my address before moving into the dorm on the 31st, despite 10 million other people telling me I could. If I attempt to, I could get reported for fraud and get deported, which I don't wanna risk, even if it's only a 1% chance.

As such, I had to redo an entire part of the itinerary (it's now different from the one in the screenshot, but similar- just slightly different activities), and there's no actual utilitarian reason for my parents to go there. But we booked the hotel and tickets already, so it's just gonna be our first and last family holiday for years.

I can't get a bank account to safekeep all the cash we're bringing over. I can't get a phone and contact my friends for over a week. I won't have my parents there to help me with formalities and paperwork. #£$%^&*!!!!!

Anyway, if you can't tell from the screenshot of the 6-page itinerary, it's a very detailed plan. I even have details like which train to take where, how much each train/bus ride will be, and navigating instructions. It's kinda borderline-OCD.

That aside, I have an event job tomorrow and will be paid more in products than cash (very very tragically because I don't use the products). Not particularly dreading nor looking forward to it. I can't like work in general, but I do like money, so I'm conflicted there. Oh well. I'll just get it over and done with.

I have a plethora of posts I'd like to do for this blog, so look forward as always~


Friday, July 13, 2012

Press Release: Presents 101

(Obligatory pretty photo of myself that has absolutely nothing to do with the actual post itself)

It seems that many people make public wishlists, but contrary to popular belief, I'm not a big fan of making wishlists for other people to refer to. I like the element of surprise when I open a present and it's not something I just asked them to get. But at the same time, about 90% of the time, the gift is something I don't want, fated to rot and grow mold in some dark corner of the fungus farm that is my room.

As such, I decided to do a press release on a guideline for presents for me. Stuff I hate, stuff I generally like- keyword general. This is not law, but something that would be useful reference if you feel like getting me a gift. This guide is meant to help you make me happier. Releasing this right before my birthday would also be incredibly indiscreet so I'm doing this half a year before. It's actually been something I've been wanting to do since I saw my teacher's version (for Teachers' Day) last year.

If you read this and realise you've given me something from the NO list, don't worry. Chances are I probably appreciated it anyway for the thought. That doesn't mean you have to give me something like that again, though.

This is also meant for presents like for occasions or whatnot, not souvenirs etc. I don't have any preferences for those because they're novelty gifts.

Let's begin with absolute NO-NOs-

Food: Don't give me perishable stuff. And I hate 90% of the food out there so there's a close to 100% chance you'll get me something I don't eat (like chocolate, the most common gift- yes, I don't eat chocolate, only white chocolate is fine but not all kinds- just don't get me chocolate). Besides, a gift that is ingested, converted to energy and excreted is hardly memorable, is it?

Flowers: I'm not a sweet girly girly angelic girl who will be delighted to receive flowers. I think flowers are the number one useless gift in the world. I don't hate them, and I do actually like flower prints sometimes, but real flowers are dumb. They die within days and it's not like I like the aroma of flowers anyway. They're overpriced and a waste of money that could be channeled more constructively elsewhere. Don't even think of getting me flowers.

Books: I don't read many books nowadays (stopped ever since receiving my 5 'A'-level Literature novels which I didn't read in the end anyway), but in the first place what makes you think you'll pick a book that I'll like? I have very selective tastes, and many unread books from years ago, so it'll take me another century before I get down to opening let alone reading your gift.

Photo Frames: Don't even go there. I'm not talking about personalised ones with photo collages and all- those are really nice (albeit bulky and really piling up in my house, collecting dust)- I'm talking about generic ones you can get from Daiso or IKEA. Useless things. I don't print any photos out, so I don't need frames to frame them up.

Candles/Incense: I realise my house might be messy and therefore maybe sometimes musky (in the dark corners and unopened cupboards), but please don't give me these things. I'm very sensitive to smells and I rarely like scents, let alone strong ones. Not to mention, I have pyrophobia, so I absolutely abhor candles.

Music Albums: This is the age of mp3s and not so much CDs. I have peculiar music tastes, so chances are I won't like your music either way.

Kitchenware: We have too much of it, especially lunchboxes. I don't think anyone in their right mind would give me anything to fuel my life-endangering cooking, though.

Cosmetics: If you're thinking that I love makeup, you're absolutely right. Unfortunately, I only buy makeup I know will suit me and thus I will use, and I'm very brand-selective because I have sensitive skin and am allergic to many cosmetics, so I like to buy my own makeup thank you very much.

Plushies: I really really really really really x∞ love and want these, but they're essentially useless, my house is filled with them collecting dust, and I can't bring them with me to Tokyo because I don't have enough luggage space as is. :(

Bag/pouch: Yes, I love these too, but I honestly have way too many of them piling up unused. No more, please.

Stationery: Same as the above- love these to death, but that's why I have wayyyy too much of it already. Especially notebooks, fancy papers and stickers.

Organisers/Planners: I do use these, but I like to choose my own, and receiving 10 planners for the same year is kinda dumb anyway. (This is especially common because my birthday is near the end of the year.)

I've run my brain dry on what other generic stuff I don't wanna receive, but I do plan to update this list frequently, so check back nearer to the gift-giving date.

Next, a guideline to what I DO want:

Cash/Vouchers: You can never go wrong with ca$h. You've probably asked me sometime in your life what I wanted, and I've probably answered cash. But for young people, giving out ang-paos isn't really the custom and is kinda awkward, so vouchers are just as good, provided for the correct places.
Preferred brands: Takashimaya, Isetan, Tangs, BHG, Sephora, Kinokuniya, generally big places where I have a huge selection to buy from instead of small, niche brands. If you do, however, know my favourite brands, go ahead and get lotsa vouchers from there. Please do. I'd love you.
Unfortunately, I'm moving to Tokyo soon and I won't be able to use these vouchers locally. I am also trying to refrain from online-shopping when at my dorm (because the package-receiving process there might be very troublesome and I don't wanna clog our shared mailbox or anything), so no online vouchers either. :/
Your best bet? Give me lots of yen- they're vouchers to be used in the large shopping centre of Japan.

Jewelry: Not all, though. I like expensive, classy stuff. Can't afford it? Then please skip this category altogether to avoid me chucking it away.
Why do I think (good quality, expensive) jewelry is the perfect gift? It has sentimental significance. If it's good quality, it can probably last for years to come, and I'll never forget who gave it to me and for what reason. For example, I never take off my 17th birthday present from my parents (necklace and earrings).
Preferred brands: Q-pot, Juicy Couture, Tiffany&Co.
Preferred styles: Silver and not too colourful (except for Juicy & Q-pot, which are all gold and colourful)
Ring size: US 7 (ring finger- but my ring fingers already have permanent rings so don't get me this, please?), US9 (middle finger- I have really big knuckles... I wonder if they even make rings in this size?)
What I'm eyeing right now: Chunky silver chain/charm toggle bracelet

Perfume: I know this sounds like it contradicts what I said about candles and incense and smells earlier, but that's what this guide is for- to tell you exactly what scent (singular) I condone.
Current perfume I'm using: Juicy Couture's Viva la Juicy Eau de Parfum
Fortunately for you, Juicy Couture does produce a lot of solid perfumes for this scent in cute jewelry forms like rings and necklace pendants, so that could be a great way to encompass two categories I love.
What I'm eyeing right now: Juicy Couture's Viva la Juicy Limited Edition Parfum

Cellphone keychains: I love piling these on until the accessories themselves are heavier than the actual phone.
Preferred colours: Rainbow, pastels, glittery/blingbling, pink, robins' egg blue (also known as Tiffany blue; favourite colour)
Preferred textures: Plushie types, squishy types, Swarovski types, anything really
Preferred sizes: Nothing bigger than two palms' size, nothing smaller than a 50cent coin
What I'm eyeing right now: Any Q-pot keychain, really

Handmade/personalised stuff: This is a very vague category I cannot define, but I like things that have a lot of effort and suffering put into it just for me. It's special, one-of-a-kind, and has meaning and immeasurable value. Just don't do it in a form of a photo frame anymore, please. And this doesn't mean I want the above, expensive things any less than this. ;)

Letters: The free option for the poor. I love letters. Don't write me emails- those are boring and I have tons of those. Write me snail mail; write me long, heartfelt messages; write me stuff I can keep in boxes for years (I still have my penpals' stuff from when I was in primary school).
***Disclaimer: Yes, letters are great, but if it was all I got for my birthday, I'd be pretty unimpressed (read: not very pleased). This is meant to be an attachment to an already splendid gift that I'm sure you can get with the help of this informative guide.***

I don't wanna go into too much detail on what I want because that'd basically be a wishlist already, and I still want to be surprised to a certain extent. The purpose of this guide is to help you avoid what I don't want, not to tell you outright what I expect.

In general, if you're special to me, I really don't care what you give me (but since this guide exists now, you have no excuse to get me anything I don't want), because it's the thought that counts (only because you're special- if you're not one of my close friends, too bad but this doesn't apply to you).

Just to further back up my demandingness, here's my life anthem (and T's as well, because we're identical). The lyrics are so true to my life, down to the I know I've got a big ego, I really don't know why it's such a big deal though? and I can't help that I need (not want) it all and Get what I want 'cos I asked for it, not because I'm really that deserving of it.

This guide will be updated frequently, so you can refer to it periodically for updates, especially nearer to the gift-giving date.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Caviar nails

Just a quick nail update from some weeks back- I DIYed some Caviar nails! They're basically microbeads on nails, and the above is what it looks like in flash.

This is what it looks like in natural sunlight. I did a hot pink polish base with semi-clear, pearl-finish, hot pink microbeads. The pictures here are without a top coat, but after taking the photos, I decided to do a top coat, which was a big mistake- the colour on the beads ran and it looked less pearly and beady, but was still awesomer than a plain mani.

Unfortunately, these nails didn't last long because I ripped the beads off a few days later in preparation to devour some heavenly black pepper crab- my all time favourite dish. I have to say it was totally worth it, though.

Anyway, for those interested in recreating this look, Michelle Phan recently did a tutorial on it, so here's the video!



Thursday, July 5, 2012

ICU update and onigiri

So today's post is really an update about university procedures and dorm stuff, but as always, I feel that image-less posts are lackluster, so here's a deco-ed photo of some onigiri I made yesterday and refrigerated to be microwaved for grub today. And it was good. (Training for when I begin dorm-life.)

Today, I finally left the house and went downstairs just to check the mail. I believe the letters from ICU came either Tuesday or Wednesday because the last time the mail was checked was on Monday, and there was a pile of stuff on top of my two envelopes from ICU.

One was an update on entrance procedures, saying that step II (admin and forms, which I submitted long ago) was complete, and step III would be complete upon payment of tuition for the first trimester (also done long time ago- paid tuition for the whole year, actually). The remaining step (IV) is matriculation and orientation in September, so basically I'm done with paperwork and whatnot, hooray!

Enclosed in this envelope also was a username and password for the online folio thing where I'll have to plan my academics, goals, and post-graduation stuff with a tutor who will be assigned to me upon matriculation. Every student has to write an essay on their intended major, academic goals, and post-grad plans. Fortunately, I don't have to declare a major till the end of sophomore year (over 2 years more), but this essay is just to indicate to aforementioned tutor which general direction I will be heading towards.

I read on other ICU students' blogs (which I stalk frequently; I wonder if this blog too, will be stalked by future ICU students one day) and found out about this essay assignment long before I even applied, and have been dreading this for a long time (haven't done anything remotely academic since 'A'-levels), but I surprisingly finished the essay in no time already. And it's only due 20th August~

The essay's supposed to be about 150 words (and hopefully so will every other essay for the next 4 years XD), but I wrote 300+ and was excessively vague. I don't know where I'm going with my life, so I couldn't give a firm answer to the guideline questions.

That aside, I actually received an email on Monday from ICU informing me of ICU Net Commons, an online portal that I'll prolly be haunted by once assignments start piling. Right now it's just a basic portal with lots of important information for new students, such as matriculation and orientation schedule, stuff to do before and upon arrival in Japan etc.

Moving on, the other envelope I got was A4 and very important. It was from the Housing Office and bore my dorm-assignment details. The ICU Net Commons actually already had a notice from the Housing Office that I read on Monday, stating that all who applied for on-campus dorms got a spot- so it's just a matter of which dorm.

Fortunately for me (by God's grace), I made it to my first choice dorm- 3WD. On one hand it could seem like a very competitive fight to get into 3WD because it's the cheapest, but on the other hand it might have been less in demand because it's the smallest. I don't really care now because I got what I wanted and I'm thankful for that.

At this juncture, I can imagine my best friend incredulous and laughing at how I'm possibly going to survive in a small, shared room when my clothes are going to take up a lot of space. I don't really know either, actually. It's about 57 days till I find out.

I also had to fill in a dorm questionnaire that will determine my future roommate. I was also aware of this questionnaire and the gist of its questions due to extensive research and blog-reading (perhaps I have a future in private investigation?). This questionnaire is also due August 20th, and yes- I have submitted it already (I see a pattern here that definitely will be harder to reinforce with regards to schoolwork deadlines).

One last thing I had to do was apply for bedding and linen lease with the contracted company that handles all of ICU's on-campus dorms' sheets (almost punny). Basically, I will never have to wash my own bedsheets and stuff, nor will I have to buy a pillow and blankets etc. as Noguchi Co. will handle it all for me, for a few hundred dollars a year. And I have no choice in this matter. ¬_¬

Of course, the deadline for that is 20Aug as well, and I've completed the procedures. With that, I have nearly nothing left to do in terms of paperwork/admin in preparation for my departure next month (yes, so close!). All that's left is my COE (Eligibility, not Entitlement to a car) for my Japanese visa, which is slated to arrive mid-August, hopefully in time because I'm now leaving a week earlier than originally stated in my application.

I haven't gotten my one-way ticket yet, but it's pretty much confirmed that I'll be arriving in Tokyo on the 25th of August (just a matter of when I'm leaving- 24th night or 25th morning?). It's approximately D-MINUS 50, and I could not be more impatient. I've already begun stocking up stuff that I need to bring to Tokyo because a) I can't get it there or b) it's cheaper here. It's not that I'm hasty, but rather the GSS is an opportunity that cannot be missed.

I am also growing poorer by the second as I continue to live off my April salary and savings from Jan-Mar salaries (what savings?). I have been out of employment since the last day of April, and my funds are dangerously... nonexistent. Unlike other kids, I stopped receiving allowance from my parents upon the conclusion of 'A'-levels too, so I'm just a broke, independent pseudo-adult now. At least I can proudly say I'm (barely) living off my own earnings, okay?

With that, I've pretty much summed up whatever updates I have pertaining to ICU. The new residency management system to be implemented next Monday in Japan is the bane of my comfort, however, as there is no information about it whatsoever anywhere, besides the basic governmental release. I need to know how long it will take upon my arrival to be eligible to get a cellphone. I've already found my dream gadget and am lusting over it uncontrollably and need a detailed countdown to the day it's in my hands. Hopefully, that will change and more information will surface next week.

Until then.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

New shoes and Malaysia etc.

So during June, I went to Malaysia twice- once to Malacca for 1D1N, and the second time to KL for 3D2N. In a small shopping arcade in Malacca, I found a bubble tea store named Cool Blog (store banner above) and took a picture because I have one! ;)

As proof of my travels, I present to you the mythical A&W that Singaporeans exalt due to the apparent lack of it in SG. What road trip to Malaysia is complete without a stop at A&W for its renown Root Beer (double) Float and curly fries?

In KL, my (paternal) Grandmother bought me these cutout oxfords~ ^o^ They're a lovely pinkish nude faux patent leather finish. The edginess of oxfords in general, even more so of the chic cutout, makes it good for more mode-kei outfits, yet the girly, neutral, pinkish nude colour matches well with girly coordinates too. 完全に理想なおしゃれシューズだよ〜ん☆

Another pair of shoes I got recently would be these wedges from New Look. They're pretty normal, with buckles (not pictured) on the front and ankle straps, but the point here is that they're nearly 6", with a 2" platform! These make me so insanely tall and instantly boost a t-shirt and shorts outfit to casual-dressy. These are a light mocha that borders on nude. I particularly like them because they're so neutral that they match basically everything I own, and aren't a seasonal trend so I can wear them all-year-round.

If you recall some posts back, I cleaned up and packed my pseudo dresser. However, my mom got me a better organiser tray from Daiso, so I repacked it again! I think it looks a lot better now, and I can fit all my regular products into this one carry-able tray (it has a handle~!!!).

The brown drawer box is now on the second step of my pseudo-dresser, leaving the top step a lot spacier. The white compartmentalised tray is organised by category of product (e.g. base makeup, cheek products, lip products, mascaras+eyeliners etc.), and there's even a long and slim compartment at the back that perfectly fits my lash case and NAKED palette.

Also on the dresser are my new Chanel 5018s that my (maternal) Grandfather got for me~ (haul post coming up! Even though it's not really my haul, but rather gifts from my Grandpa that I requested, hehe~).

Alrighty, that's about it for this post! I have many more photos for drafts of posts queued up, so this blog ain't dying anytime soon (in the best scenario, it'd even be active all they way until I leave, and therefore active forever!), and I also have a vlog series idea in the making, so look forward to those~