Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Homemade Marshmallow

Ingredients:
* 2 packets of gelatin powder (I used knox Gelatine)
1/2 cup (125ml) + 1/3 cup (80ml) cold water
* 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
* 1/3 cup (100g) light corn syrup or honey (I used honey)
* 4 large egg whites (1/2 cup, 110g), at room temperature (I used Naturegg Simply Egg Whites Free Run)
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 

* 1 drop of red food colouring (I use Wilton Icing Colors Paste in Red-Red #610-906)
* Icing sugar for dusting


Here's how to make it:

1. In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the 1/2 cup (125ml) of cold water. Stir until the gelatin powder has dissolved.



2. In a small saucepan, combine the granulated sugar and corn syrup/honey with 1/3 cup (80ml) of water. Place over medium-to-high heat (use light-to-medium heat if you are using a gas stove) until it reaches  210ºF (99ºC) or until it starts to bubble around the edge if you don't have a candy thermometer.

3. Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until fluffy (start at 6 and finish at 10 if using a KitchenAid Artisan Mixer). Add the food colouring into the mixture towards the end.
4. When the syrup reaches about 210ºF (99ºC), add the gelatin mixture in and stir until everything is dissolved (you should not see any lumps).



















5. Slowly pour the hot syrup into the egg whites and let cool. Add in the vanilla extract. The mixer should be lowered to 4 or 6 to incorporate the mixture and mix for 3-5 minutes. 
6. Dust a baking pan or casserole dish with icing sugar.





















7. When the mixture is cooled, pour the mixture into prepared pan or dish.
8. Set aside for 2 to 3 hours depending on how deep the pan or dish is. 
9.  Cut marshmallow into small squares or use a metal cookie cutter to cut marshmallow into desired shape.
PS. It was my first time making it and I was pretty pleased with the result. I combined two recipes together (Epicurean and Style at Home Magazine).

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Outfits ~ Bunnies and Lace






I love the faux collar on the T by Alexander Wang blazer and the simplicity of the J Brand pants.



Super stretchy T. Babaton tank top from AritziaForever 21 lace top, Rock & Republic jeans, Cynthia Vincent pink loafer style flats



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PS. Happy Birthday to Chai Latte





Beauty Must-Have's To Have at All Time


Goody Ouchless Bobby Pins
Bobby pins are essential whenever you want your hair off of your face. I especially like the Goody Ouchless bobby pins because they don’t snag or pull your hair. They are available at all supermarkets and drug stores, for little money. I have thick Asian hair so I crisscross two together so they don’t slip out.

If you are not familiar with dry shampoo, it's  a powder, usually in a spray can, that absorbs oil in your hair and leaves a fresh scent. It gets rid of greasy “second day” hair, adds volume, and makes hair look and smell fresh and clean, minus the need for water. The only problem is if you don't apply it correctly, you could end up with hair that looks like Storm in X-Men. I have natural dark brown hair-black hair and I spray it about one hand length away from my roots, then I use my fingers to rub the product in. By doing so, this removes the white powdery look (very obvious on dark hair) and adds much needed volume to my life-less hair. I recommend only using this if you hair is between washes (using your hair daily will dry out your hair and cause breakage), this should not replace your volumizing or styling products.

Compact Mirror. 
I always keep a compact mirror close by. You never know when you need to rem't ove smudged eye makeup or remove a small piece of food that gets lodged between your teeth! I have a cute Fendi mirror but you can buy compact mirror at any beauty store. A used/empty compact works too!

It's not good to re-apply powder throughout the day as it clogs your pores and will create that really caked on makeup look. To freshen up my makeup, moisten and revive my tired long day at work skin, I keep Caudalie Beauty Elixir handy. It is a great freshening spray. I have a large bottle at home to give my skin a nice glow in the morning. I keep a travel size bottle at work so I am never without it.

Always always wear sunscreen, regardless of rain or shine. I live in rainy Vancouver but I apply  sunscreen throughout the day. I use Shiseido SPF 55 in the morning and keep the Bare Escentuals BareMinerals SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen in the office for re-applying when I go out for lunch and after work. The reason why I like the BareMinerals SPF 30 are a) it's a natural sunscreen in a powder form, b) it has a built-in brush for application, c) it comes in 3 shades (light, medium, tan. I use medium for my yellow undertone skin) so it is perfect to use to touch up and to remove any shine.

Hand Sanitizer and Antibacterial Wipes. 
Public places are full of germs. 
If you go outside, it is likely that you will come in touch with many things that have been touched by many others. You, yourself could sneeze or cough. There is nothing worse than knowing that the teeny tiny micro-organism could be living on your hands and stay dormant for a very long time. There is also no need to pass around the unwanted bugs. Do yourself and people around you a favor and disfinfect. I am a huge germaphobe so I keep two types of disinfectant on me: Bath and Body Works Pocketbac Sanitizing Hand Gel and Wet Ones Antibacterial Wipes Singles. They are in my bags, throughout my house, my office drawers, my car, etc. I also include them in goodie bags for friends during Christmas. :)

Band-Aids
Is there anything worse than getting paper cuts or breaking in a new pair of shoes (and ending up with nasty blisters on your heels or toes)? I spend a lot of money on shoes but even all leather shoes can rub like crazy the first time you put them on. I also go through a lot of paperwork and architectural drawings and when you flip through tens of pages at a time, paper cuts are un-avoidable. My savior is pretty Sanrio Hello Kitty Band-aids. I keep a  stash of various sizes of bandages at my desk, just in case. Of course regular Band-Aid brand works too, but having pink Hello Kitty is way better than plain beige (for me anyway).

I use it to quench dry lips and smooth it over my cuticles if I need a quickie manicure. Vaseline works too.

Hand Cream
The temperature varies a lot between the outdoor and the office, which can often lead to chapped hands - especially when I constantly wash them and use hand sanitizer. To prevent dry, cracked hands, I moisturize throughout the day using one of my favorite hand lotion, Acca Kappa moisturizing hand cream.

Hydrocortisone cream is the best cure for many common skin problems - allergic reaction to detergent, makeup, poison ivy, eczema, etc. My skin is especially sensitive in the winter with the harsh wind that cause my face to get all red, dry and itchy. I keep a tube of Sunmark Hydrocortisone Cream close at hand for quick relief. Many larger supermarkets including Safeway and Walgreen have their house brand of hydrocortisone products but I find that Sunmark makes the cheapest 1% formula. 

Medications, Supplements
Whether you’re team Tylenol or a natural supplement fan, having a stash of goodies to combat headaches or to keep monthly cramps at bay is a great idea. I also keep a few of my daily supplements in case I forget to take them at home. I would not recommend any natural supplements as everyone is different but LivCo is a great natural (all-green) supplement to cleanse your liver. It is especially helpful in preventing your liver from overworking if you are a lover of alcohol. Talk to your naturopath to see if you can benefit from it.

After each meal, give your teeth the once over. If you spot any leftovers, dislodge them using a floss pick. I prefer   
Oral B Glides Pro-Health Floss Pick because it's shred resistant and it has Scope to give your mouth a breath of freshness. Floss picks can also be used to de-clump mascara or remove dirt from under your nails. However, please remember to perform such forms of maintenance in the privacy of the ladies room. 

Q-Tips
Q-Tips are very versatile. You can use it to remove smudges under your eye, to apply vaseline or lip ointment onto your cuticles, to dab concealer on a zit...the list goes on and on.

Mini Perfume/Perfume Samples
I always keep a couple of my favorite perfume in sample vials at work. They are quick for freshening up if you have a last minute after-work date. My favorites at the moment are Balenciaga Paris Eau De Parfum and Cartier Baiser Vole Eau de Parfum.

These are my essentials. If you’re stranded in your office or an island, these items will get you through. 


Leave a comment or send me a message telling me about your beauty essentials. I will be having my first beauty giveaway at the end of February so watch out for it. It will include some of my favorite beauty products.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Nail Polish ~ All that gold & glitter

 Austin Powers in Goldmember was playing this week and after watching it, all I could think about is gold. :)



1. Apply China Glaze in Lemon Fizz on all fingers except the ring finger.
2. Apply Nails Inc. in Chelsea Embankment on the ring finger.
3. Apply Sephora by OPI in Only Gold For Me on all fingers except the ring finger.
4. Apply Zoya Armor Top Coat on all fingers.


           




From left to right:

  Nail Inc. in Chelsea Embankment, China Glaze in Lemon Fizz,  Sephora by OPI in Only Gold For Me 


Steps of the Met

One of my favorite activity is to visit The Metropolitan Museum in New York City.
Here I am with two friends, waiting to get into the Alexander McQueen Salvage Beauty exhibition.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I Loooove Gold

Testing out the power of Polyvore...


I Loooove Gold



Schumacher gold evening dress
$575 - stylebop.com

Diesel Black gold
$175 - diesel.com

Jimmy Choo black heels
€629 - veryeickhoff.com

Leather sandals
$220 - topshop.com

Marc by Marc Jacobs block heels
$461 - my-wardrobe.com

Moschino Cheap & Chic stiletto high heels
£325 - harveynichols.com

Alexander Wang tote handbag
$975 - alexanderwang.com

Miu Miu leather handbag
$875 - mytheresa.com

Ruby Kats 24 karat gold necklace
$160 - maxandchloe.com

J Crew link jewelry
$118 - jcrew.com

Mallarino filigree jewelry
$315 - net-a-porter.com

Gold cocktail ring
$4,450 - forzieri.com

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Beauty Goodies from some of my favorite brands


Yours with any $100 Cosmetics or Fragrance purchase at Neiman Marcus

With your cosmetics or fragrance purchase of $100 or more, you'll take home one of three Neiman Marcus Exclusive totes, including an assortment of beauty samples:
Cle de Peau Beaute Le Coton, five sheets.
Tom Ford Neroli Portofino Eau de Parfum Vaporisateur Spray, 1.5 ml/.05 fl. oz.
A Dozen Roses Electron Eau de Parum, .88ml/.03 fl. oz.
Kiehl's Since 1851 Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate, 5 ml/0.17 fl. oz.
Molton Brown Vitalizing Vitamin AB+C Shower Gel 30mL/1 fl. oz.
Fekkai Ageless Rejuvenating Shampoo 9mL/0.3 fl oz
Fekkai Restructurizing Conditioner 9mL/0.3 fl. oz.
Fekkai All-Day Hair Plump 7mL/.024 fl. oz.
Kate Somerville Clinic-To-Go Resurfacing Peel Pad, two pads.
La Mer Bounceback card for a deluxe sample with your future La Mer purchase.


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Get a FREE 10-day supply of Kiehl's Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution at Holt Renfrew


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Get a FREE Hands of Hope 1 oz and Lasting Hope 2 oz with any $65 or more purchase at Philosophy! Use Code lastinghope.


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Get a FREE  tote bag with any $50 or more purchase at Philosophy!  Use Code tote4me.
Neiman Marcus

Monday, February 20, 2012

Outfits ~ Beige and Neutral

As I have mentioned in my weekly highlight, my week was really crazy. And the photo right below shows how tired I looked. :(  I need to get a 20-hour sleep day to de-puff the under eyes circles. Boo. Somehow sleeping with my hair half dried resulted in a almost nice blowout look. 

Without thinking, I ended up wearing neutral (poo colour according to my boyfriend) two days in a row.


Obakki silk shirt dress
H&M gold braided belt (cheap! Only cost me $6 on sale.)
Theory tights




Vince long sleeves tee (similar one here)
Goody headband



Highlight of the week - Valentine's Day, Chanel, etc

Last week was Valentine's week and it was a busy busy week. I had to attend 6 meetings, went out of town and back. I made my first batch of homemade macarons on Thursday night and fed my team on Friday. I tried to make a collage and here are a couple of photos of my week. 

On another note, I found out that Hugh Hefner of all people is really into scrapbooking which has inspired me. He has and hundreds of albums cataloging every event of his life. Since I don't have time to print and glue every photos, I find that working on this blog will be my way of archiving my life. 


1. Valentine candies

2. Tender beef ramen at Ajisen Ramen

3. Saboten set (tempura prawn, loin and tenderloin) at Saboten Japanese. The quality of the meat was really good and fresh (non-greasy). However the over 40 minutes wait time was a bit much for "fast food". I would only go back if they can speed up their service.

4. Xiaolongbao at Northern Delicacy. Very juicy dumplings but the filling was a little overly stuffed.

5. Organic white chocolate bar and a Bee (mine) chocolate from Meinhardt

6. Beef brisket and tendon soup noodle from Northern Delicacy

7. Lamb chop dinner from Kisamos Greek Tavern in Steveston, Richmond (3420 Moncton Street). The food has improved a lot since I was last there. The lamb chop was cooked perfectly to my liking (medium well) but still remained very juicy and properly marinated.

8. Small simple arrangement on the dinner table.

9. Valentine's Day themed Sephora purchase: Stila Blush in Love At First Blush (shimmery pink, pearl, coral),Sephora by OPI Nail Polish  in It's All About Me and A True Romantic. They also gave me a few samples to celebrate love.

10.  Chanel slingback and Chanel logo necklace.


1. Gifted floral arrangement.

2 & 3. I made a simple and straight to the point V-Day card (cut out of my hands and made an accordion strip to hold the two hands together) for my boyfriend.<3

4. Homemade lobster and clams linguine with spinach.

5.Another gifted  pastel roses.


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"The best love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds. That’s what I hope to give you forever."


Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

NOTW - Casanova Is So Into Me


"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage."
Happy Valentine's Day! 
Sephora by OPI nail colour in Casanova Is So Into Me.
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