Saturday, June 14, 2014

April & May 2014 Happenings

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This post is very late... But here are a few mini "adventures" I had the last 2 months.

Stony Brook University
Stony Brook University
A friend and I made an overnight trip to Stony Brook University during our Spring Break. We decided to take the LIRR there. Although neither of us were familiar with that train system, we managed to make it in one piece. Hurray!

I was pretty excited as it was going to be my first dorming experience (even if it was just for one night). Since I hardly ever travel, I looked pretty overpacked; now I know better, right?

Even though Stony is infamously known to be a party-school, I thought it was rather calm for a Thursday night. (Not that I went looking to party :P) I love the convenience of the college I go to...but nothing can really compare to an actual campus and all it's openness & culture.


Cutting Board
53 Bayard St New York, NY 10013
b/t Bowery & Elizabeth St in Chinatown
Cutting Board Chinatown NYC Calamari Sweet Potato Waffle Fries  Cutting Board Chinatown NYC Pancetta Cream Pasta
Fried Calamari w/ 3 sauces, Sweet Potato Waffle Fries, Pancetta Cream Pasta
I rarely go to Chinatown nowadays. There seem to be many new restaurants that aren't the typical Cantonese cuisine-fare. I hear there are also some good ramen places in the area now as well. (Next on my to-try list!)

Cutting Board offers an Asian fusion/Italian selection. I remember seeing many Facebook posts from Cutting Board last summer and they all looked pretty tasty. I can't attest to all their dishes but the ones I had weren't bad. Portions are big for one person but not quite enough to share among two people.

Chinatown Ice Cream Factory
65 Bayard St New York, NY 10013
b/t Mott St & Elizabeth St in Chinatown
Chinatown Ice Cream Factory NYC Red Bean
Red Bean Ice Cream & Waffle Cone
I've heard of this place and walked pass the store many many times before but have never tried their ice cream. The lineup for Chinatown Ice Cream Factory was really no joke. When paired with their narrow store space, it can get pretty overwhelming and fast. I would suggest taking a look through their website and/or Yelp first. As with other ice cream stores they do offer taste testing but it may be a little difficult get the busy employees' attention.

They had many flavors that I wanted to try but ended up playing it safe and getting the red bean flavor. I was a tad disappointed because there wasn't that much red bean flavor. But...if I ever feel like lining up again I would definitely go back to try some of their other unique flavors.

Melt Bakery @ Madison Square Eats
Melt Bakery NYC Mango Sorbet Cardamom Cookies
Mango Sorbet w/ Cardamom Cookie

Spot Dessert @ Food Gallery 32
Spot Dessert Koreatown NYC Smoked Coconut Cheesecake
Smoked Coconut Cheesecake
Bestie C's surprise treat after Finals week. She didn't really like this but I thought it was pretty tasty. Then again I don't think she's a big fan of coconut and I am quite the opposite :P

Sundaes and Cones
95 E 10th St New York, NY 10003
at 3rd Ave in East Village
Sundaes and Cones East Village Soho NYC Thai Ice Hazelnut Waffle Cone
Thai Ice + Hazelnut Ice Cream & Waffle Cone
I think this has to be the best ice cream I have ever had. They had many interest flavors but Thai Ice (tea) and Hazelnut was calling my name this time around. I really should have only gotten one flavor but I don't know when the next visit will be! The ice cream was oh so creamy and full of their namesake flavors. Deelish!

I wish they still had a storefront in Brooklyn...only just found out that they were originally based in the Bay Ridge area ;(


blue dress Marshalls Chambray Shirt Floral Skirt H&M
Ah I think skirts and dresses are really starting to grow on me. I'm still not very confident in wearing either of them often but that can't stop me from trying them on in store!

Does anyone think the chambray/denim top + floral skirt combo look weird? I showed me Aunt (who's the most 'fashionable' in the family and she thought it was strange and an ugly combo...)


How could 2 months possibly go buy without me doing something in the kitchen :P

Banana Flax Walnut Muffins
Banana Flax Walnut Muffins
I remember trying this once when I was volunteering with a bakery a few years back. That was also the first time I've ever heard of flaxseeds. After finals were over I took to the internet to find something similar online. After making a couple of batches, I think I have it down! I will try to share the recipe soon (after a few more tries).

Black Sesame Bread
Black Sesame Bread
My first time making bread! It was exceptionally easier since I have the help of a KitchenAid mixer. But a family friend/Auntie wanted to learn (from a newbie) so I had to figure it out via hands as well. It was definitely a fun and stressful process but experience nonetheless. Apparently I cannot replicate the same results because each batch of dough worked out differently each time. Alas I am no bread expert... As long as it is edible, right? Not sure if I want to tackle bread making again anytime soon but it is on my list to master.

Homemade Rice Bowl
Typical Lunch
Rice, Boiled Chicken Breast, Corn, 2 Soft Boiled Eggs, Good Food Tableside Greek Yogurt Guacamole
I had my first taste of Chipotle rice bowls a few months back and loved it. So many textures and flavors... Now I can see why so many people rave about it.

Since I can't buy it too often (pricey & high-calories!) I decided to figure something out at home. I guess this could be considered a "skinny" and "light" version, although the flavors are very much different. It is still very filling and of course you can vary it as you wish. The possibilities are endless in a rice bowl.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

April & May Empties

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Ah, I haven't had this many empties before!
april empties otaku masks
April Empties
Of course masks are pretty easy to use up. Throw one on at night and it is used!
But there's always the things like being too tired, too lazy, or just plain forgetting about them altogether. If I do remember about sheet masks, they are a great way to end my night.
I find laying down with a mask on while watching videos or listening to music very relaxing. If I am too tired that night I can set an alarm to remind me to take the mask off before it ends up sucking moisture out  instead of hydrating my face.
Most masks advise to massage the remaining serum into the skin but I tend to just let it soak in by itself. If I could squeeze in a little extra boost, I use my Hitachi Hada Crie to massage my face (with the mask still on).
may empties otaku mask elf studio tone correcting powder josie maran argan oil
May Empties
L to R: Otaku Pomegranate Antioxidant Brightening Mask, Clarisonic Brush Head, e.l.f. Studio Tone Correcting Powder, Josie Maran Argan Oil
The exciting month of empties! I can't even remember the last time I finished a powder. I remember being excited about hitting pan last summer and lilladylife told me that it was just a sign of being halfway through. She couldn't have been more right. I really liked using the e.l.f. powder to set my colored base makeup. It made things look smoother and my makeup lasted pretty long. However, it can look cakey & over-powdered if too much is applied. I probably won't repurchase it any time soon because I would like to try other brands. But for the price there is not much harm to give it a try.

When I bought the mini bottle of argan oil to try, I wasn't too sure how I would use it. Sometimes I would apply a few drops of the oil as a moisturizer. It works well and absorbs quickly. But it was still not really a match for my dry patches, yet I was hesitant to apply more because I can get pretty oily throughout the day. Towards the end of the bottle I decided to add a few drops to my moisturizer at the time. I think I like this method more because it adds a boost to my moisturizer and makes it easier to apply the oil product.

How do you find time to wind down and relax?