Tuesday, April 28, 2009

HK, Rilakuma, and other Japanese goodies

Golden week has officially started. This is a two week period where we have 4 National Holidays. Basically the entire country is on vacation.

I have to go to work on Wednesday (on a holiday) since I've got a global review with really high-up folks in my company who work in the US... A high-pressure conference call at night on a holiday... OH JOY.

---------------------------

I haven't done a post all weekend long. You can blame blogtv for that!

BIIIG thanks to paperdollrevenge,
M, Wuz, Kasumi, L, KT, Jen, Danni, Mayaari, Sanny and all the other girls who spent time chatting with me! It gets kinda lonely in Kobe sometimes!!!

But as a good blogger, let me give you a goooooood taste of Japanese goodness...


Here is a shelf in my nearby grocery store
Yes, you heard me right. Tons and tons and tons of HK stuff in the grocery store (NOT a supermarket!)

This picture does not nearly show how long this shelf was. The shelves were stocked from head to toe, and it would have taken 3-4 more pictures of this size to show how big the selection was!


LOOK at this very very very very very cute HK mirror!!!


In the bath / shower section, I saw these REALLY cute pump bottles...

This for all of the Rilakuma fans out there!!!

And what would a Japan post be without some sweets?

Espresso Kit-Kats
I hear ya Jess...


And of course...
It's green tea season again, so green tea cookies!!!!!

Hope you all had a great weekend!!!

xoxo, K

Thursday, April 23, 2009

SWAP with Wuzzy!

Here is the OTHER package that I got in the mail the other day!!

I am so so so so SOOOOO sorry I wasn't able to post this sooner... I feel terrible...

It's a package from our favorite Hawaiian girl, Wuzzy!!!!

I saw something I wanted from her Aloha Swap, and she asked me for some Japanese candies in return! I am so nervous when someone asks me for Japanese sweets... what if they don't like them?????

How cool is it that you can call your sale "the Aloha Sale"???

If I do one, should it be called, "the Konnichiwa Sale"????? hahahaha


Anyway... I get off track too often!


Here's the package!

Wuzzy put everything in this cute box! How thoughtful!!!
(and what bad photography!!! hahaha)


LOOK at everything she sent me! WOW!!!!


This is what we swapped for!
Clinique mini shadows in Sparkling Sage and Strawberry Fudge
Everything else is Wuzzy's GENEROUSITY!!!
I am SOOO gonna get you back for this, Wuzzy!!!!

HK chocolate filled marshmallows & Hurricane popcorn!
Mochi Crunch & Nori??? WOW!!

Skinfood Mushroom BB Cream & a NYX trio in Guru!!!
I did not realize this was a NYX trio!
Neutrals are a staple for me and I am so eager to try the BB cream!


Hawaiian HK magnet and Hawaiian cell phone strap!
HK in a grass skirt playing the ukulele??? SOOO CUTE!
I LOVE getting touristy stuff from where you are!!!

Blueberry Swirly Twirly Soap
Jess's Girl Eye Dust
Hollyberry Liptint

You have SPOILED me!!!
THANK YOU WUZZY!!!


xoxo, Kay

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

EDIT: SWAP with JeSMakeup!

When I came home from work on Monday, there were TWO packages waiting for me at the post office!

TWO PACKAGES!!! WEEE!!!

I brought them both home, but I only opened one... from Jess (Fun and Makeup)!
She wanted some Kit Kats (see here for the wonderful post on it)!

Here is the package!!!!

Look how many goodies are inside!!!

So colorful and bright... even the twisties are AMERICAN!!!

Yummy American candy!

LOOK at how cute this case is!!!


This case had candies shaped like HK heads inside!!!!

A love note from Jess... awwww....
Conditioner & HK solid perfume??? I think lipgloss (thanks Jess for clarifying!)

WOW!!!
Jess took a look at my wishlist!! THANK YOU!!
HOW did Jess KNOW that I LOOOOOVVEEEEE this one!!

oooh look... bubble wrap!!!


What could be inside????

OH WOW!!
THANK YOU FOR TWO MORE WISHLIST ITEMS!!!!


My very first NYX trio!
And CG Cheekers in Golden Pink!!!!

Thank you to Jess for this GREAT swap!!!!
xoxo, K

Monday, April 20, 2009

PACKAGE from DSK!!!

First off, thanks to KT & L for your very kind words this morning. It means a lot to me that you've accepted me in the beauty blogger community!

My package from DSK (Steph) came on Saturday!



I bought the MAC Fafi Quad #1 from her!



Ooooh, what a professional looking business card!
Get your DSK jewelry here!


Here's the Fafi Quad!!!
My very first MAC item!

I can't seem to justify buying MAC shadows in Japan...
This quad is so versatile that I know I'm gonna love it!

OOOOOH, but there's something else in the package!

MY VERY FIRST DSK EARRINGS!


I love earrings...

(that's why this ear has 5 piercings hahaha)

Thanks again to Steph for the fantastic sale!!!

xoxo, K

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Advice: EDM?

I washed my EDM FTK & LHK brush recently and it took nearly a day to dry... I was so tempted to blow dry them!!! hahaha


Today I need advice from the lovely beauty blogger community.


I am thinking of placing an order to EDM for their Personal Custom Kit Full and I need your help to chose a few more products!

I switched to MMU about two months ago after ordering a sample kit from EDM and it is SO much easier for me!!! Their samples are very generous and they last about a month on me!!

For those of you who haven't used Everyday Minerals yet (yeah, I know everyone and their mother has used EDM, but who knows?), they have a kit which allows you to pick 6 products for $34+shipping.

Considering most of their full-size foundations are $12 and most of their brushes are around $10, this is a big savings! If I buy more than three things, I should just get a custom kit!

I'm going to get the following things:
- Full-sized foundation (Light Olive Intensive)
- Full-sized blush (Waffle Cone)
- Flat Top Brush (I LOVE my FTB, but I want another one as a backup)
- Full-sized Concealer (Intensive Medium)
Any more suggestions?

Maybes:
- Natural Reflections Light
- Blush - Snuggle
- Golden Light Intensive Foundation (I have one already)

Things to think about:
- I am thinking of getting the EDM e/s brush, but since it is less than $6 ($34/6 items = around $6 per item), I think I'll get it separately
- I am a little wary of highly pigmented blushes, especially red/berry colors.
- The Mint Concealer did not work for me. It washes me out and makes me look ill!
- I'm wary of their e/s since I do not think I can use them up. I have the Golden Globes Palette which I LOVE, but not sure of the Sandcastle eye palette.

Thank you in advance for your help!!!

xoxo, K

Thursday, April 16, 2009

YUMMY! Empanadas!


LOOK!!!

Don't these look YUMMY????


I tried my hand at making empanadas! I guess empanadas are stuffed pastries made in Latin America and other countries...??? Please correct me if I'm wrong!

One of the non-beauty blogs I read is smitten kitchen. This recipe was taken from there!



The filling contains ground beef, onions, tomatoes, chopped olives, and chopped hard boiled eggs.

I also made the pastry, but I couldn't take any pictures. Taking pictures when both of your hands are covered with flour is just too difficult for me...

Apparently I have a thing for dumplings!!!

Hmmm... what to make next week???

xoxo, K

Monday, April 13, 2009

BIG ANNIVERSARY!!! ::applause::

This past weekend was a big anniversary for me.

My 1 year smoke-free anniversary!

Yes, it's been a whole year since I picked up a cigarette!!!

I've never been a big smoker. I used to smoke a cigarette when things weren't going so well in my life and I was really stressed. I'd have 1-2 cigarettes a day for about a week and then I'd throw the rest of the pack away. I've never smoked an entire pack of cigarettes.

The legal age to smoke in Japan is 20, but...yeah, you get my drift. I'm 27 now. You can do the math.

My best friend has a huge impact on my life. He is the one person I can talk to about anything, good or bad. He would tell me he was proud of me when I did well, something no one has every said to me, even my parents (yeah, typical Asian parents - I know you guys understand!)

One day, when I was having a lot of trouble at work, I told him I wanted to smoke again. He then told me something I didn't know before - that a few years ago he had lost his father to lung cancer. He said to me, "I've lost one person I love to cigarettes. I don't want to lose another."

That was all it took.

A few days ago, someone at work who I used to smoke with offered me a cigarette. They were really expensive cigarettes (like x10 the normal cost) that someone had given him. I realized then that I hadn't smoked in an entire year. I could look him in the eye and say, "No thanks, I've quit smoking and I've been smoke-free for an entire year."

If you are one of the lucky people who has never given in to the temptation of smoking, I applaud you. Staying smoke-free has been very difficult to me. I did not think I was hooked on to nicotine since I was never a heavy smoker and I never had trouble throwing away a pack of cigarettes. What I didn't realize was how the addiction was really in my head more than in my body.

It's still hard not to smoke when someone offers me a cigarette. But I know that my best friend will be there for me so that I don't give in. And I know I will not smoke again.

You know who you are...
If you ever come across this...


THANK YOU!!!!

xoxo, K

Friday, April 10, 2009

My favorite magazine - ageha

There is one magazine that I buy religiously every month. It is called "Koakuma (little devil) ageha"


What makes this magazine different is that most of the models are "Mizushobai" girls. What is mizushobai? Please look here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mizu_sh%C5%8Dbai
Basically they provide companionship to men in special bars and clubs.

Of course they are very beautiful girls!!! I love this magazine because it is so outrageous. The hair and makeup is waaaaayyyyy too out there for me to wear everyday.

Still, there are a few tips I can get here and there and I LOVE this magazine!!!

How this girl puts on makeup...

A comparison on different girls' eyeliners


Eyebrows...

Clothing...


Hair color...

This magazine is becoming so popular now and it has a big impact on mainstream Japanese makeup/fashion. For example, falsies are very popular for everyday use because these girls use falsies all the time!


Isn't it interesting how we all want what we can't have? I've seen American girls buy Japanese magazines ($8 in Japan) for $15 in the US, and some of my Japanese friends buy Cosmo & Glamor for $10.

Me? I have a yearly subscription to Allure. Yeah, we all want what we can't have!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

My dark pigmented lips...

I have a small problem with my lips, or rather, with choosing lip products.

Apparently my lips are super sensitive. When I use a product which does not work for me, the skin on my lips peels like hell until the product is gone.

I guess I'm lucky that it doesn't make me break out or bleed or anything like that. My skin just sheds!!!

This makes looking for lipsticks a huge pain. Some lippies just make me shed so much that I cannot use them. Most long-lasting lipsticks are like this. Max Factor's Lipfinity? The first time I tried it, my lips shed and the color flaked away like the way my nail polish chips away! Ewwww...

The other problem I have is that my lips are darkly pigmented. I have pretty typical Japanese coloring, and the last time I was color matched at MAC I was NC 20.

But this is the color of my lips:
And this is my naked lips! It looks like I'm wearing something, doesn't it????

Because of this, I have a very hard time finding lipsticks which show up on me. If they do, they are usually really red or something...

Lately, I have begun to wear concealer on my lips, but for previously mentioned reasons, I have to be very careful or else the concealer will flake off...

Here's a picture of my concealed lips!

For my LOTD pics, I'll try to show one with concealer and one without!

I like the shape of my lips, and I like that I can wear just a gloss on my lips and it will still look good. Still, I'm envious of all the girls who can just pick up a lipstick and it will look the same applied to their lips as it does in the tube!

Do you have anything special you need to do when you apply makeup?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Wish list

Note: This is not a "could you buy me this in our swap?" wish list. It is a "Oh, I need to buy this next time I'm in the US!" wish list so that I don't forget what to buy on my next trip


MAC 109 brush / 129?
MAC 219 brushMAC eyeshadow - Brule, Green Smoke, Swish, Stars ‘n Rockets, Cranberry, Silver Ring, Gorgeous Gold, Swimming, Expensive Pink, Pink Venus
Microplane zester (this one)

My Bath & Body Works wish list is here
MUFE  HD Microperfecting Primer- Neutral
Smashbox Photofinish primer light
UDPP
L'Oreal Voluminous  Waterproof Mascara - Carbon Black
Cover Girl Lash Blast Waterproof (I can only wear waterproof mascaras!)
Urban Decay’s 24/7 Pencil Liner - Zero
Stella by Stella McCartney Eau De Toilette
Lush - Brazen Honey Fresh Face Mask, Love Lettuce Fresh Face Mask, Herbalism cleanser, Angels on Bare Skin cleanser
Clinique Even Better Skin Tone Corrector

xoxo, K

Friday, April 3, 2009

for real this time! YUMMY!!! 餃子 Gyoza (potsticker dumplings)

A few people have asked me about my burn... thank you for your well wishes! It's about half healed now! And to as what I was doing when I burned myself...

I was making gyoza! Gyoza are Japanese dumplings filled with pork & vegetables. I think they are similar to Jiaozi in Chinese cuisine, since the characters are the same - 餃子. Please forgive me if I'm wrong!
The finished product!!

I had some of the stuffing left over from the previous time I made them, which I had frozen. Yeah, actually I just ran out of gyoza skins last time hahahaha.
The stuffing contains ground pork, minced cabbage, and grated ginger (REALLY important to get rid of the porky smell!!!). I also add some soy sauce to mine. Typically, people add chopped nira (garlic chives) but since I put them in my bento... um, I don't want people around me to say I have stinky breath!!!

I used the "regular" size gyoza wrappers. Since I crimp my gyozas closed, I can usually only put like a teaspoon of filling inside. If you just close them, you'll be able to get about 1.5 teaspoons of filling in.

Oh, and the crimping? It's not difficult, it just takes some practice. My practice comes from helping my mother from a young age...

But I never helped my mother to pan fry them, so I used to be HORRIBLE at this!!! I was never sure how to do it!

Preheat your frying pan and put a bit of oil inside.
Put the gyoza in the frying pan, and add some water so that the bottom of the gyoza is submerged. Put the lid on and cook the gyoza on low heat until the water is gone.
They are cooked through if the skins are translucent.

Then drizzle some oil around the edges of the pan and spread it around - this is what helps to make a crunchy bottom and to make sure they don't stick to the pan!

I'm not good with non-stick pans and I'm not sure if cooking spray works for the last part!


YUMMY!!!!

I like making these because they keep well in the freezer and I can just pop a few into my bento.

What is your favorite recipe to make? What do you usually eat for lunch?

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