Sunday, September 30, 2012

Pregnancy Fashion - Tie Front Jacket

Another pregnancy fashion post? That's right, girlies. The bump is actually fun to dress up.

While Seattle remains surprisingly sunny during the day, dawn and dusk feel quite chilly. Girls here often layer up with jackets, cardigans and such. 

Speaking of jackets, I prefer a tie front jacket for pregnancy. Its open front gives my bump room to protrude, and tying up above the belly seals the rest of my body in, and protects me from the cold mornings and nights.

The Wet Seal tie front jacket I'm wearing cost only $1.29 at a local thrift store. It's both comfortable and affordable. Its dark color also offers a slimming effect, which a pregnant lady like myself certainly needs.

pregnancy fashion
Can't tie it around my waist, but tying over the belly works well too.

pregnancy fashion
A side shot again, of the growing baby inside.

pregnancy fashion
Love how this jacket caters to a big belly.

Been feeling contractions here and there lately, so this might be one of my last pregnancy fashion posts.

Thanks for stopping by.

How do you girls like tie front jackets for the chilly weather?

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Today, Why Don't You...

Eat a Gourmet Burger

Wash It Down with a Fizzy Drink

Beef (or pork) Up Your Savings, In Case of a Rainy Day

Hang Up Your Dancing Shoes, and Watch a Good Flick Like the Avengers

And Go to Bed Early Dreaming of Hunky Chris Evans ;O)

Hope you are having a great weekend!


Post Baby Survival Tips for Your Body

Need major help coping with your post baby body?

Immediately after giving birth, your body will look a little...different: boobs are hard and droopy, tummy looks stretched and flabby, joints still feel swollen, and the rest of your body just appears abnormal.

Don't worry though. Everything will go back to usual. Just give it time. Meanwhile, use the following techniques to cope with your post baby body. They will not only help you adjust to life as a new mommy, but also give your confidence a boost.

1. Put on comfy sleep wear

For those sleepless nights (and days) after bringing the baby home, you'll need comfortable sleep wear to lounge around the house in. Try a button up top that provides easy access to your breastfeeding boobs, and drawstring bottoms that loosen as much as you need it to.

My newest jammies. Bought it especially for those sleepless post baby days.

2. Get a nursing bra

Nursing bras are designed for easy access and comfort. Their convertible covers provide quick take off, and their added padding provide pain relieve for sore nipples.

3. Wear Foundation Garments and Shape Wear

What's great about foundation garments and shape wear? They give you a lean and trim silhouette. Before your body completely returns to pre-pregnancy shape, they can at least help you appear sleeker. 

For quality foundation garments and shape wear, take a look at colombian shapewear from AnnetteOnline.

4. Buy Transitional Clothing

Get shirts that are a little bigger than your previous size, but are still trendy. They may not let you feel completely back to your old self, but they at least give you a little taste of what's ahead.

A size bigger may not be desirable, but it helps a slow return back to pre-pregnancy body.

5. Go outside

In some countries, like my native China, new moms must stay inside for one month after baby's arrival. Sounds backwards but people do it. Even my progressive cousin obeyed her mother-in-law's command, and stayed in for four entire weeks -- how is it healthy to avoid fresh air?

Rebellious women like my mom and myself went outside as soon as we could, and I suggest you do too. Even if you don't want to be seen, a leisurely stroll and a few minutes outside of closed walls can instantly lift your mood.

Being a new mommy is hard, but you can do it!


Hope you found these tips helpful.


Anything else you want to add?


Monday, September 24, 2012

Makeup Tutorial - Smokey Gold and Purple

Expecting moms can do smokey eyes too.

Though I barely wear smokey eye shadow anymore, I did become interested in trying purple and gold smokey. After seeing so many versions of the combo, I decided to attempt my own. Bare with me please! This is my first try. Hope it turned out decent.


Revlon Luxurious Color Diamond Lust in "Plum Galaxy"
 ELF Custom Eyes in "Golden Glow"
ELF Shimmer Eyeliner Pencil in "Bronze"

Step 1

Line bottom lash line with bronze eyeliner.

Smokey Eye Makeup Tutorial
Try to line outside of your waterline, and more on your lash line.

Step 2

Line bottom water line with a black eyeliner.

This step further defines your eyes.

Step 3

Line top lash line with black eyeliner. Make the line a little thicker.

The thicker, the sexier.

Step 4

Using a short-bristled eyeshadow brush, apply gold shadow on your lids and stop at your crease line.

This elf eyeshadow works amazingly well. It has such a pretty color too.

Remember, don't go too much beyond your crease line.

Step 5

Using a regular eyeshadow brush, add purple shadow to the outer corners of your crease.

Stay as close to your crease line as possible.

Stay as close to your crease line as possible, and just do the outer corners.

Step 6

Apply a soft highlighter like CoverGirl Single Shadow "pink chiffon."

Blend well.

Blend well for a natural effect.

Step 7

Curl lashes. Apply mascara.

Step 8

Finish with blush and light lip gloss.

And you are done!


Not too hard, right?

Smokey or not, purple and gold make a unique yet lovely combo.

Besides smokey, how else would you wear these colors?

Almost Heaven

Guest Post by Heather F.

Wouldn't it be great to have a sauna in your own backyard? Looking back, I loved spending some time in the sauna while I was on a cruise this summer. Once you get used to the dry heat, you can almost feel your body releasing toxins. It was so relaxing and I felt so refreshed after!

Many gyms no longer have sauna's in the locker room. But, who wants to sweat like crazy during a workout and then step into a sauna anyway? Not me! I'd rather go into the sauna whenever I wanted, late at night, first thing in the morning, etc. Before I found out abut Almost Heaven, I thought you'd have to be a millionaire to have a sauna in your house.
But, who knew you could have a sauna installed in your backyard without spending a fortune?! Almost Heaven offers cedar barrel saunas and they even provide payment plans. Having a sauna at your disposal can improve your quality of life in many ways. It helps with:
  • toxin release
  • weight loss
  • arthritic pain
  • immune system enhancement
  • circulation enhancement
  • endorphins release
  • skin tone

I couldn't believe sitting in a sauna for a short time could do all these wonderful things! My mom used to sit in the sauna for over an hour. I don't know how she did it, but has great skin, so maybe that's one of the reasons!

These sauna's come with everything you need inside. And, if you pour water over the hot rocks, it becomes a steam room! So cool! It's shaped like a barrel, so it's very compact. It has a sturdy, yet elegant, glass door. There's an option of having one with a canopy too, so you can sit on the ledge outside. 

Almost Heaven Sauna's are sold at Costco, and there are also dealers all over the world. Plus, if you go to their Facebook page, there's a coupon for $1,000 off!

When we move into a house with a backyard (currently living in a town house with no backyard ) I am definitely going to save up for an Almost Heaven Sauna!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pregnancy Fashion - Like an Eggplant! My Transitional Top.

"Get transitional clothes!

That's one recommendation I always give new moms who ask for post-baby advice. After your body undergoes nine months of traumatic change, it doesn't go back to normal as quickly or as proportionately as you have predicted.

A few women are lucky, but most will struggle. It's not just about weight, it's about proportion: when one part of your body returns to its original size, other parts, like your breastfeeding boobs, remain gigantic. This makes fitting into pre-pregnancy clothes almost impossible.

I bought this purple top as a transitional shirt, to wear during the few months when my figure gradually transitions back to normal, but still looks awkward. It is long enough to cover a flabby belly and butt, but still cute enough to wear out. Also, the cut out shoulders look pretty sexy.

This transitional shirt came in handy during my current pregnancy too. It hugged a colossal belly with perfect snugness. Dawn a pair of jeggings and fall boots, and I'm ready for anything.

Pregnancy Fashion
Trying to put on a slimming pose - very hard to do when you are 36.5 weeks.

Pregnancy Fashion
There it is - the infamous belly shot. If I don't hold on tight, I might tip over.

Pregnancy Fashion
Like an eggplant :O) Go ahead, you can laugh.

By the way, doesn't this purple shirt make me look like an eggplant? 


LOL. Pregnancy fashion can be fun, right?


Friday, September 21, 2012

Makeup Tutorial - Barely There Matte

Sometimes you want color. Sometimes you don't. For days that you don't, how about a barely there makeup that's uncomplicated, natural and matte for fall?

Step 1

Use a concealer to cover dark circles and blemishes.


Step 2

Apply matte foundation.

Makeup tip: to make coverage more matte, apply two layers.

Step 3

Apply foundation over your lids.

Step 4

Curl lashes. Apply mascara.

Step 5

Brush a light pink blush on the apples of your cheeks.

Step 6

Apply matte lip stick in nude color.


No smokey eyes, no brilliant colors, and not even eye liner.

Just you -- polished with barely there makeup.

Matte is perfect for fall, and barely there is perfect for day.

How do you like this look for a day time look in the fall?

Skin Care Blog Post - Why You Need a Spa Day

It was my wedding day stress that started a spa obsession. With only $10,000 of budget, which is less than half of national average, I planned my entire wedding all by myself. By the end of the year-long project, I was exhausted. Finally, I set up an appointment at a small spa. One rejuvenating facial and massage later, I became a new woman, hooked on professional pampering.

If you are a hardworking girlie, I believe you also need a spa day. Cell phones need recharge, cars need tune ups, and you need a few hours of relaxing bliss. 

Did I give you enough of a reason for a spa day? If not, here are a few more:

Because It's Healthy

Daily stresses can put you in a gloom. Going to a spa, a place of relaxation and rejuvenation, help you relieve stress both physically and mentally.

Because It's Educational

At the spa, you receive not only professional services but also professional advice. Trained massage therapists, estheticians and makeup artists leave excellent and personalized advice on how to improve your look and feel.

Because It's a Good Place to Bond

Going with girlfriends? A spa is the perfect place to bond with gal pals. With no men, no interference and no pressure around, a spa day offers an opportunity for girlfriends to chat, share and laugh with each other.

Because It's an Inexpensive Way to Have Fun

Compared to other leisurely activities, going to the spa is actually affordable. With proper research, you can find cheap spa packages

Take Dyanna Spa for example, which offers hair removal and spa service for men and women since 1983, and is one of the first beauty salons in New York City to offer waxing services for different parts of the body, has packages that cost $200 or less. That's a heck of a deal for an expensive city like the Big Apple.

(To read more about Dyanna Spa, please visit their blog here.)

And Again, Because You Deserve It!

Lounging at the spa with a friend last year.

So, what do you say girlies?

Want to book an appointment soon?

Thursday, September 20, 2012

10 Characteristics of a Rocking Blog Post

Whoever told you blogging is easy is a liar. Whether you use a free platform or paid hosting, focus on niches like cheap mac makeup or write about daily happenings around town, blogging requires hard work. In addition to making a visually pleasing website, and networking actively, you also need to create informative content made up of exceptional blog posts.

Most beauty and fashion bloggers blog as a hobby. Therefore, having to constantly provide rocking blog posts can seem like a daunting task. 

Also, just what is a rocking blog post anyway? Impeccable photography? Professional editing? Articles of pulitzer quality?

Don't fret, girlies. You don't need a masters in journalism to write rocking blog posts. But you do need to include some elements that a rocking blog post requires. Here are 10 to consider:

Katy Perry
Katy Perry rocks. How about your blog post?

1. Clever Title

The title of your blog post is always what readers see first. So the catchier, the better. Try something attention grabbing, like a question or a list -- something that makes readers want more.

Also, make your title SEO friendly. Because titles are what search engines see first too. Make it easy for crawlers and bots to recognize what your post is about, so it ranks higher during a search.

2. A Hook

A hook is something that draws readers in and sparks their interest. Usually, they belong at the beginning of each post. Hooks include questions, quotes and metaphors. To read more about hooks, check out my earlier post here.

If you hook your readers, they will likely continue reading your blog post.

3. Scan-able Content

Scan-able content is content that breaks a long post into smaller sections, with headers, sub headers, bullets, graphics, and anything that makes your writing easier to read. If readers do not have much time, scan-able content still conveys the main idea without requiring visitors to read every word. 

Think about it. Are you likely to read a huge block of words, or a well-organized article strategically and logically grouped into categories?

4. Complementary Photos

You should always focus on content. However, photos that complement your writing help readers understand your ideas.

Plus, photos further break down a long blog post.

5. Valuable Info

Why should someone pay attention to your blog, while there are millions of others writing about practically the same subjects?

Giving visitors valuable information gives them incentive to read your blog, and come back too.

6. Appropriate Word Count

Blog posts, especially those about beauty and fashion, are not term papers. Try not to blab on forever, but still provide sufficient information. A general rule of thumb is to keep word count between 200 - 500.

7. Good Grammar

You don't need perfect English, but at least try. (This is an area I need to improve too.) Proper grammar makes your tone authoritative, and your reputation respectable.

I totally agree with this girl.

8. Individuality

You are a blogger, not a professional writer, and certainly not a robot. If people want glossy pictorials and fancy verbiage, they can always pick up a magazine. Readers come to your blog because it has personality, and is something they can identify with.

9. Honesty

A HUGE reason why I discontinued my personal facebook account is because of people's inflated digital egos -- advertising their perfect marriages as if no one else has a good relationship, overloading on pictures of events and parties just to portray a supposed social life. Do they really need that much assurance?

Don't use your blog to boost confidence, or inflate anything. Be honest. If a product did not work, say it, and explain why. If you have failed in something, tell your readers, and list the lessons learned. And if you have reached new heights, tell everyone how hard you worked, and what others can do to achieve the same success.

I may use facebook to promote my blogs, but deactivating a personal account was the best decision I have made.

10. User Interaction

Again, visitors at your blog do not have much time. Honor your visitors by including them as a part of your post. Ask for their ideas, opinions and input. Really care about what they have to say.

By the way, a good way to engage readers is to ask them a question at the end of each blog post. Give them a reason to interact, and they will surely come back.


Thanks for reading.


Sorry this post went a little longer than 500 words :O)


Did I cover them all, or do you have anything to add?


What's in Your Memory Box?

Hello sentimentality! So nice to see you again.

I am the type who gets reminiscent when facing a life changing event. Only weeks away now from having another little girl, I again sit with my memory box, an old shoe box full of cards from family and friends, collected since I was a little girl myself.

Material things do not phase me like they do with others. However, memories and experiences...

Don't get me wrong, I love a designer purse. But if I had only $500, I'd rather spend it on a road trip with friends, or at a bed and breakfast with my husband. At the end of the day, it's really about how you fill in those waking hours, and not about what you have.

And at the end of a pregnancy, it feels wonderful to look back on the past, and knowing that I can share it with my children in the future.

Want to take a peek at my memory box? Here are a few that made me smile:

Cards from a loving husband.

Very impressed that my husband has never failed to celebrate an important date.

Our 2 year anniversary was a fantastic one.

Kind words from friends.

Aww. Miss you too, K!

And you too, G!

 Events that everyone celebrated.

So bummed I was too pregnant to fly to the Lou, but glad hubby went instead.

Love and appreciation from family.

My parents has never missed my birthday. Thank you for always being there for me!

This card came from Aunt S, along with adorable presents for Jo.

Reminders of fun trips.

Atlanta was my husband and my first trip together. I'll never forget falling in love there.

And photos that accidentally sneaked in. 

With my cousin on a trip to Nan Jing.

Yikes! 14-year-old me in the most atrocious dress. Why didn't someone say something?

A candid shot of me dancing with a bridesmaid at our wedding. Such a fun night!

Thank you for letting me share slivers of my past.


Who knew that a worn out shoe box can hold such irreplaceable treasures?

What's in your memory box?