2016: The Year of Growing Up

31 December 2016

It's weird how this year feels like it passed so quickly yet I couldn't wait for it to end, and skimming through my social media feeds tells me I share this sentiment with a lot of people. I think I'm ready to welcome the new year, but before that, here's a year-ender post to recap my 2016.

My 2016's most liked photos on Instagram shows that people cared a lot when I posted about Sandara Park, Sadness, art, and makeup
Listing down this year's highlights here. I: had a wish come true when I got to watch Nate Ruess perform live; thought I was having a heart attack; visited the Planetarium again after sooo many years; helped launch Lucky Blue Smith as Penshoppe's newest endorsergot to work with Korean superstar Sandara Park thanks to Penshoppe; turned 30; went on an out-of-town trip with my boyfriend for the first time; went to Dia del Libro; built a lamp for the people of the Dumagat tribe; helped launch Gigi Hadid as Penshoppe's newest endorser; celebrated our first anniversary as a couple; got a raise; helped assist Penshoppe's series of events when Lucky Blue Smith came here; experimented with resin jewelry-making; had a ballet class under Prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde herself; met Atom Araullo; got new glasses; had another dream come true when I worked on a project between my idol Manix Abrera and our client Beyond the Box; got my own Tamiya and raced; rushed myself to the Emergency Room because I thought I was having a heart attack; said goodbye to my friend Ed who is now working abroad; got introduced to Hamilton thanks to Chelsea; got a Fitbit Charge HR; got my braces removed; and surprised my boyfriend for his 30th birthday.

This is also the year I bought the most number of books I've ever bought, but read the least number of books I've ever read in a year. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

But then I love how most of my favorite memories I listed down here involve my favorite person, Miah. ♥

The Little Prince: A Visual Dictionary

28 December 2016

I first read Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince when I was in high school. We were at my uncle's house then, and being the anti-social kid I was I chose to go to their mini library and browse the books. I figured it would be a short read since it's a thin volume, with illustrations to boot. I finished it in no time and I was completely taken in. I asked to borrow it and my uncle's wife happily obliged, saying that she wishes their kids have the same penchant for reading as I did.

Well, it's been years and I still have the book with me.

Since I lost all my childhood books in a fire that razed through our neighborhood back in 2001, this book can be considered as the oldest one I have, and it's not even technically mine. Hee. I have the deluxe pop-up edition book and it's one of my favorite things I own, but this thin volume holds a special place in my heart. Trivia: did you know that it's second only to the Bible as the world's best-selling book in history?

For Christmas, my boyfriend gave me this gift and oh my goodness, I bawled so much:

The Little Prince: A Visual Dictionary by Christophe Quillien
The first complete visual history of a classic masterpiece
Everything that you need to know about The Little Prince, from the first draft of the Saint-Exupéry novel to the recent animation movie by Mark Osborne.
Who hasn't heard of The Little Prince? First published in the United States in 1943, this classic by Saint-Exupéry is the world s best-selling book, after the Bible.
For the very first time, discover the official and definitive encyclopedia to this planetary myth: the genesis of the masterpiece, the origins of the Little Prince, all of the drawings, Saint-Exupéry's life, and more.

I consider myself to be nimble when it comes to news about books, movies, and other pop culture phenomena when they concern my favorites, but I was completely thrown off guard and blown away by this gift. It was completely unexpected because I didn't even know such a thing exists! Thank you so much, bb! 

Let me give you a quick virtual tour through this book. 

A merry Althea Korea Christmas

21 December 2016

Are you done with your Christmas shopping yet? Four more sleeps before Christmas and I am going crazy with holiday preparations! Thanks to online shopping, I'm done with more than half of my list without the need for long queues and squeezing in with the holidaze crowd all eager to cram!

One website I bought gifts from is Althea Korea. I've shopped from this website several times before already and I can vouch for their reliability. What do you know, they scored even more major brownie points from me because their app is now available at the Play Store and App Store, making sure I can accomplish some shopping even while on-the-go! Case in point: I checked my Althea Christmas haul out while on my two-hour commute going home from work.

My Christmas haul arrived in six days (that's even faster than the promised 10-15 working days!), and it came in a special holiday-themed box! How adorable!

Ladies and gents, here are what I got on my most recent Althea Korea shopping "trip":

Some of them will be given away as gifts, okay? (^~^;)ゞ

Miah's 30th

19 December 2016

So many instances this could have failed, but didn't. I didn't realize planning surprises are so much fun. We should do this more often. ;)

Happy 30th birthday. I love you. ♥

Strip Manila's limited edition Mulled Wine Wax

16 December 2016

It's easy to get lost in the holidaze and forget one's self, but thankfully Strip's pioneer branch is just a block away from my office. One visit during lunchtime yesterday and I ticked personal grooming off my December to do list. (-‿◦)

What I love about Strip is that they continuously think of new fun wax variants to offer to customers. Aside from the usual Strawberry, Chocolate, and Lemon waxes available all year round, they have come up with variants like the New York Cheesecake, Shanghai Summer Orange, and Gingerbread, among others. This holiday's limited edition wax? It's the Mulled Wine Wax.

Strip says that the limited edition Mulled Wine Wax is perfect for those who are thinking of getting Brazilian or Boyzilian for the first time. It’s infused with the warm and festive scent of red wine, orange, cloves, and cinnamon, which is sure to get you into a holiday mood.

The Project Vanity 'Naughty and Nice Kit'

12 December 2016

I think beauty boxes are great since they give us a chance to try new beauty products that have just been introduced to the market, or get a bunch of tried and tested products at a discounted price. Sometimes if you're lucky you can even score beauty boxes that contain your old favorites as well as new ones that are potential faves. 

Subscription boxes are nice to get because it's like receiving a surprise gift each time, but personally before I spend money on something I'd rather know its contents first. So far not a lot of beauty boxes have jumped out at me enough for me to buy it, until Project Vanity released its Naughty and Nice Kit. I believe I'm one of the first ones to snap it up because I was worried it would get sold out quickly!

My kit was delivered a day after I paid for it, and OMG. I already knew it was a great kit hence my purchase, but holding it in my hands gave me such a thrill because OMG, what a great kit! For only P1,450, you get all these products worth more than P6,000, and unlike other beauty boxes that have filler samples [that may add to the box's value but not really because you don't get to use them anyway], the products included here are all winners! I mean, it blows my mind that you get more than what you pay for with just the Strip gift certificate alone!

Ladies and gentlemen, here are the contents of the Project Vanity Naughty and Nice Kit and my quick thoughts on each one.

Metalmouth no more

08 December 2016

Praise be to God and all His angels and saints, for I am finally free from the bondage that shackles me!

Me and my love for hyperbole. But seriously, if, like me, you've been wearing braces for more than a quarter of your life, then you'll find a lot of reasons to rejoice when they're finally removed.

Buh-bye, braces!

I first wore braces when I was in first year high school, which I wore all my high school life until my fourth year in college. Unfortunately, even that long span of time wasn't enough as I had to have new ones fitted again. I had it done two years ago, and today my orthodontist removed it! For good, I hope.

Bloggers United Strikes 12!

07 December 2016

It's almost the end of the year (whew, about time!), but before we bid 2016 goodbye, let the #BU12xWorldBazaarFestival Holiday Bazaar sate your appetite for all things pretty this holidaze shopping season!

The #BU12xWorldBazaarFestival will be held at the World Trade Center-Tent on December 10 from 10 in the morning to 12 midnight. Expect loads of activities, exciting contests, and of course, great deals and shopping finds from your favorite bloggers!

My [supposed] Christmas 2016 Wish List

01 December 2016

A blink and what feels like one too many sighs, and it's December. 

I know I say this a lot, but seriously, WHERE DID THE MONTHS GO? Did we enter a portal days are less than 24 hours long? Did we somehow unlock the mysteries of time and make it go faster? I don't really know. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Since 2011, it has been a tradition for me to post my Christmas wish list on the first day of December in case Santa's feeling generous, but today I didn't even realize it was time to make this year's list if not for Timehop reminding me so. And so I spent the idle hours of this day thinking to myself what I want to receive this Christmas so I can start doing one of my snazzy collages again...

... and I came up with nothing.

I mean, sure, I've wanted a typewriter for so long and a white Kindle Paperwhite would be very, very, very nice to have, but, I don't know, in the grand scheme of things, with the amount of distress and political upheavals we've been having lately, I just feel like no one really cares if I get a paperweight or a new ebook reader or the Hamiltome for Christmas.

A visual representation of my brain cells having a bear-y important meeting
Now I don't know if this means I've matured (which is all well and good) or if I just became jaded (which I don't really want to be).

Am I too old for Santa's list?