Saturday, March 31, 2012

2012 March Birchbox Review

Decided to try Birchbox subscriptions out and I got my first box in the mail a week or so ago.  Birchbox is a monthly subscription service where you pay $10 per month to receive a surprise box of beauty product samples in the mail.  Products are a range of nail, makeup, hair, and skincare products.  I'm the type of person that likes surprises and the anticipation of getting things in the mail, so thought this would be something fun to look forward to every month.  Plus, I don't tend to take many risks when it comes to purchasing beauty products and generally like to know whether or not something really works well with me before putting down the money.  Anyhow, here's a picture from the website of the birchbox I received in the mail:

In the box I received the following:

Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint: Felt nice and light on the skin.  Had light coverage, but it did have a nice matte finish.  I would buy this if it wasn't so expensive.  The sample had enough for one application.  Nice, but I wouldn't buy the full size because it is overpriced in my opinion.

Orofluido Elixir:  After showering, I rubbed this serum through my hair.  I have very damaged hair because I am growing out a perm, so was excited to use this.  I can't say that it really did a 360 on my hair, but it did feel and smell very nice - had a nice vanilla fragrance to it, and I love vanilla scents.

One Love Organics® Skin Savior Waterless Beauty Balm:  This product is meant to moisturize your face, but I am usually reluctant to try anything on my face unless I am sure it works well with my skin.  Tried it on my hands, and while the initial application looked and felt greasy, the more you rubbed it in, the more my hands looked healthy and well moisturized.  I also like the size of the sample they gave to me because I think I will be able to use it for awhile, which is great considering that the actual product costs quite a bit.

Tea Forté® skin-smart™ Teas:  I am a HUGE tea drinker.  I love tea and drink it every day so I was excited to see these in my birchbox.  Unfortunately, I was not about the flavors of these samples.  I tried the Cherry Marzipan and the Honey Yuzu which did not suit my tastes.  The cherry marzipan reminded me of cherry medicine and the honey yuzu didn't really taste like honey or green tea - it tasted very processed.  I don't like mint, so I didn't even try the cucumber mint at all.

Color Club Neon Nail Polish:  This was actually my favorite item in the box. I absolutely loved this nail polish.  It came in the aqua color, very pretty and matches w/ a lot of my wardrobe.  A great spring color too.  Also, I think this was the first nail polish that I've ever bought that's lasted on my nails this long!  Usually within the first two days, there will be chips or it will start to come off.  This nail polish has lasted on my nails for a week already and still has not chipped.  It's amazing because I didn't even need to put a top coat - two coats was just fine to give it a nice professionally finished look.  Loved this product and would totally buy the full size in other colors as well.

Annick Goutal Eau d'Hadrien:  Gonna be honest, i was not really a fan of the scent of this perfume.  Not much to comment, it just had such a strong scent that I was not too fond of.

My overall opinion of the box is pretty favorable!  I wouldn't buy full size of any of the products, since they're all pretty expensive, but it's nice to have a usable sample size of the nail polish (I may actually purchase the full size of this nail polish when I see it at drug stores... it's a great brand!), the body balm, and hair serum -- enough product to get a good use of it.  And although the tinted moisturizer was so small, it was still nice to try it out.

If you are interested in subscribing, make sure to do it through me!  I get Birchpoints for every friend I refer :)  Click here

Friday, March 30, 2012

Japanese Tea Garden at Golden Gate Park

One of my favorite places in San Francisco is the tea garden at Golden Gate Park.  I love coming here on Mon, Wed, or Fri mornings I have off (e.g. presidents day or MLK day) when admission is free.  It's just so relaxing and peaceful.  Plus, I am a huge tea drinker.  I love love LOVE tea... am addicted. drink it every day!



Thursday, March 29, 2012

DIY origami paper projects


I love origami papers.  I bought a few stacks from Daiso so that I could make some decorative items for the house.  The first is this origami paper lantern lights project.  I got the idea from my martha stewart craft book that a good friend of mine got me for my birthday.  Basically, you create the 'water balloon' out of the origami paper and then attach them to the bulbs of some christmas lights to create little lanterns. They're so pretty and colorful. I had a fun time making them.  Check out this youtube video for a tutorial on how to make the water balloon origami:




The next project are these DIY candle holders.  I got the idea from my pinterest because a lot of people were posting projects of candle holders where they used random papers like pages from a book or a map to cover a mason jar.  Check it out here.

For mine, I used origami paper and punched cherry blossom shapes through the paper so that it would cast some light through the shape.  Very pretty effect:



Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Etsy Shop Find Post #5

Present and Correct

This shop not only appeals to my love of packaging, but also to my teacher aesthetic.  Pencil boxes, clipboards, rubber stamps, journals, etc. are all oh so cute from this lovely shop.

Make sure to check them out for your office/packaging supply needs!

Cute android picture app

I have been waitimg for a pika pika type photo app and i finally found something really cute! download decopic frm the android store. Check out the photo below:


Hehe, get it? Eay. Pray. Love. Lol. After creating this photo, i looked at it and realized that they have a poo shape w a smiley face. Lol, of course only pple like me would find that cute and not a little wierd.

Monday, March 26, 2012

LA Haul

So as you can see, I am catching up on my posts.  This should have been posted in July of 2011.  When I went to LA, I had this mission of finding all the stores where they sold cute things.  I would type kawaii or cute store or tokyo stores into my yelp app on my phone to try and see where to shop.  To my luck, I found quite a few stores that fit what I was looking for.  Here is a haul of stuff I bought when I was in LA.  Most of these items were purchased from a store called "Tokyo Japanese Lifestyle"  I was so excited to find this store because we didn't have this in the bay area at the time.  Shortly after, I found out they opened a branch at Valley Fair in San Jose! Love the store... and here are some items I purchased:

Featured in the photo: Tea set, three mechanical pencils/pen, lead pencil holder, stamp that says good job w/ a cute bunny on it, mamegoma notebook, and Domo Kun planner.

Handmade "notes"

few weeks ago, I had to say goodbye to a dear friend of mine.  Since she was leaving, I felt compelled to make her a little something to remember the good days we all got to share with one another.  I was actually inspired a lot by another blogger, othellofriend.  Check out her hand made notes here:

So I took this idea and created my own little hand made notes that had cute little messages around it.  I made a little pocket folder to hold photos & notes/messages that I collected from all our friends.  Here was the end result:

Tea & Cute Mugs

It's been a while since I've posted, and now that I'm on spring break and have the actual time to invest in this a little bit, I feel motivated to try again.  Especially now that I've figured out a cute header to put on this blog... For a while I couldn't figure out what to do about that and it was making me unmotivated to post.  I've also been unclear about my focus and purpose with this blog.. but more and more I am finding that it will be about my cute & yummy finds, and crafting endeavors.  So disregard the random old posts from before and look forward to my posts going forward!

 So in honor of my first post back, I have posted a photo of my desk and what's on it.  My desk is where I craft. It's where I write lesson plans.  And it's where I spend hours on pinterest and sifting through blogs.  I just recently got this really cute mug from Daiso.  I don't know about you, but I find that having tea in a cute mug somehow makes the day a little bit brighter.