Sep 30, 2014  •  In Claire, Motherhood, Personal

Happy 4th Birthday, Claire!

At this time 4 years ago, I was admitted to the labor & delivery ward of Holy Name Hospital in Teaneck, NJ.

11 and a half hours later, our Claire Emmanuelle entered this world.

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I love her for her confidence and sass.

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I love her for her for her curiosity, intelligence, and hilariously sharp wit.

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I love her for her passion and tenacity.

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But who really needs a reason to love her? Sometimes, just loving someone for no reason is enough.

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Happy birthday, my love. May you continue to embrace life. May you continue to bring laughter and joy to those around you. May you never know a day where you didn’t feel loved by God.

I love you.

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Claire’s school does a “Montessori Celebration of Life” activity for each child’s birthday. We were asked to write a
short essay (to be read out loud) and bring in photos to share with the class. I may have gone a bit overboard. :-P

 

Sep 28, 2014  •  In Art/Design, Relationships

12 Shoes for 12 Lovers

Most people would rather forget about their exes, but Sebastian Errazuriz is not like that. You see, the artist’s latest series consists of 12 intricately designed shoes that are meant to reflect 12 of his ex-lovers.

Each shoe, made in conjunction with Melissa (a shoe company that has collaborated with the likes of Vivienne Westwood and Karl Lagerfeld), comes with a short description of, or a story regarding to which the girl it is dedicated. (WARNING: they contain NSFW language!)

Some are endearing, while others not so flattering.

A few are laugh-out-loud funny.  :lol: 

But based on the writing style and its numerous references to sex, I’m sure that a portion of the population would view Errazuriz as nothing more than a chauvinist pig. 

Personally, I think each shoe design and its accompanying story are all entertaining in a crude and truthful manner. ;-)

Either way, you can’t deny that “12 Shoes for 12 Lovers” is deeply personal and powerful. (And I wouldn’t mind wearing “Laura” or “Jessica”!)

“Honey” Natasha:

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Sep 25, 2014  •  In Beauty, Information, Korean

The Changing Face of Koreans

You probably presumed from the title of this post that I will be talking about plastic surgery. ;-)

Well, you’re partly correct. My intention behind this post is to share with you an article published in today’s WSJ: “The Changing Face of South Korea,” which discusses how Korean faces are changing over time — from tens of thousands of years ago to 100 years into the future.

The Korea Face Institute (only in South Korea would such a thing exist :-P ) has taken 20,000 photographs and skull measurements, then factored in interracial marriage, plastic surgery, and nutrition in order to create the following “past,” “present,” and “future” pictures:

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The Korea Face Institute’s assessment of a typical Korean face in 12,000 B.C.

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The typical Korean face today

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What the natural Korean face may look like in 2100

According to the Korea Face Institute, the typical Korean in 12,000 B.C. had a more circular face with southern mongoloid features.

And with the influx of Southeast Asians in recent years, which is expected to rise even more, the future Korean face will feature thicker eyebrows and a wider forehead for men. Additionally, scientists predict that the majority of women will have double eyelids.

What do you think? Does the forecast seem plausible?

It’s funny, because I don’t think I look much like the average Korean face in the “present” picture above, yet most people are able to guess my ethnicity correctly.

(In comparing Korean, Japanese, and Chinese facial features, the general consensus seems to be that Korean people tend to have flatter faces with higher cheekbones and smaller eyes. Japanese people have longer face shapes with lower cheekbones and more angular facial features. Chinese people tend to have rounder face shapes as well as rounder facial features overall. However, due to the sheer size of China and its multi-ethnic makeup, it is much more difficult to generalize.)

If you’re Korean, how closely do you resemble the typical Korean as seen in the “present” picture above?

Do you have the facial features that are considered typical for your ethnicity?

Sep 24, 2014  •  In Beauty, Korean, Personal, Reviews, Shopping

My Korean Skincare Routine: An Update

It’s been almost 3 months since I ventured into the wonderful world of Korean skincare products. (Not sure what I’m talking about? See here and here.) And because I have tried a few new products since my last post on the subject, I wanted to give you guys an update. :-)  

First things first: how is my skin holding up? I think I’ve mentioned before that in the past, after about a month or so of using a new product, my skin seems to adjust and adapt, somehow making the product less effective.

This hasn’t been the case with my Korean skincare routine at all! My skin remains softer, smoother, and more supple than I can ever remember. In fact, my skin probably hasn’t been this nice since before puberty.

I am now more confident than ever in exposing my bare, makeup-less skin — freckles, age spots, and other discolorations be damned!

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I’ve only JUST started using sunscreen on a daily basis. :-(  When I think about
all the discoloration and spots I could have prevented by doing this earlier, I
can’t help but cringe!

Now, on to the products! 

I have mentioned the double-cleanse method before and how I was interested in trying the Face Shop Rice Water Bright Cleansing Light Oil as a result. But right before I was about to buy a bottle, I read about the Banila Co Clean It Zero line of sherbet cleansers.

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Can I just say that this stuff ROCKS? No messy oils running down your arms. A sherbet texture that immediately melts onto the skin — and although it is an oil cleanser, no slimy or icky feeling.

The original Clean It Zero proved so popular in Korea that other formulations soon followed: Clean It Zero Purity for sensitive skin (does not contain mineral oil), Clean It Zero Radiance for those seeking a glow, and Clean It Zero Resveratrol for whitening and anti-aging effects.

They’ve even released a large, 180ml (vs the regular 100ml) tub of the original formula, which is what I plan on getting next when my current one runs out. :-D  

As for the second step in the double cleanse method, I waited ’til I ran out of my tube of regular foaming cleanser, and then tried the exact product mentioned in SokoGlam’s blog: the Skinfood Egg White Pore Foam. (And why not? This cleanser is less than half the price of what I used before!)

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Some people do not like their cleansers to leave a squeaky-clean feeling, but I do…and hence I love this cleanser! It foams up wonderfully and tightens up my pores considerably.

The next two new products I’ve tried are from the same brand and line of products: the Benton Snail Bee High Content Skin, and the Benton Snail Bee High Content Mask Pack.

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To be completely honest, I am a bit disappointed in these products. This isn’t to say that they were bad; rather, I had such high expectations for them because of all the rave reviews I had read online! I think that the Benton Snail Bee line would work better on those with sensitive, acne-prone skin. Since I have neither of those concerns, they didn’t do much for me — that is, they weren’t any better than other skins/toners or sheet masks I’ve tried.

I continue to use them, but will not repurchase when I run out.

I think I have finally settled into a good regimen — a slightly pared-down version of the Korean skincare routine:

morning:
1.  Cleanse with the Skinfood Egg White Pore Foam
2.  Apply the Benton Snail Bee High Content Skin (will stop using when I run out)
3.  Apply the Missha Time Revolution the First Treatment Essence
4.  Apply the Nature Republic Super Aqua Max Fresh Watery Cream (will switch to the Combination Watery Cream in the cooler months)
5.  Apply the Missha All-Around Safe Block Mild Essence Sun Milk SPF45 PA+++

night:
1.  Double-cleanse with Banila Co Clean It Zero and Skinfood Egg White Pore Foam
2.  Apply the Benton Snail Bee High Content Skin (will stop using when I run out)
3.  Apply the Missha Time Revolution the First Treatment Essence
4.  Use a sheet mask (only once or twice a week, and the type depending on how my skin feels)
5.  Apply the Laneige Water Sleeping Pack_EX
6.  Apply the Innisfree Eco Science Eye Cream

Before, I used to view skincare as a chore. (And I’ve gone to sleep without washing my face more than I care to admit. :oops: )  But now, I actually look forward to my skincare regimen! And contrary to what I’d feared, the new routine does not require too much time, and despite the fact that I’m using more products, is cheaper than what I used in the past.

Again, why didn’t I do this sooner?!??

Sep 23, 2014  •  In Art/Design, Facebook, Funny, Web

Thoroughly Depressing Comics About Our Relationship to Facebook

FACEBOOK TO BEGIN CHARGING USERS $2.99/MO STARTING NOVEMBER 1ST, the headline read.

A friend — who is very active on Facebook with over 1,000 friends and numerous subscribers — had shared the article to her timeline. The response was swift and immediate.

Grief. Denial. Rage. Threats to move to other social networks.

Only then did an astute commenter point out that the article was a hoax; there was no need to panic.

I couldn’t help but be reminded of this incident when I came across these clever and powerful comics yesterday.

The truth hurts, doesn’t it?  ;-) 

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