Sunday, March 30, 2014

In pictures: Garance Doré Open Studio and Pop-Up shop [NYC Fun]

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

My own Q&A #3: What is your favorite part of the day?'

1. What is something you try to remember to do every day?
Brush my teeth and shower. Oh and Dave and I ask each other "What is your favorite part of the day?" every single night. We also try to write it down if we are not too lazy!

2. My favorite form of exercising?
It used to be dancing but now it is swimming. Swimming is actually easy for me and I love the water. The 92Y has chlorine-free, ozone-cleaned water therefore, I do not have to worry about dipping in chlorine for an hour (which dries my skin and hair). I also like any type of group workout that is fun and new. I recently joined Racked for their monthly fitness club. This month, we did a "Pain and Pleasure" class at David Barton and a H2Ohm (surf yoga) class at Crunch. I wouldn't mind doing this weekly!

3. What is something you do not want to share?
Not that we are thinking of having a baby any time soon but we do already have a baby name in mind. It's "unisex" but probably better for a girl. It is a name we have agreed upon therefore, it is something you don't want to toy with. I would not be happy if someone we knew picked the same name for their kid so we rather not share it.

4. What is one thing you wish you were good at? thing? I have soooo many! I know that I want to be better at doing math because it is embarrassing to be doing additions and subtractions with my imaginary fingers. I'd also like to do multiplications or divisions without a calculator like my mom can! I also wish I could be a better writer and convey my ideas with more ease, which would definitely be beneficial for blogging.

5. What is something new you tried recently?
Ethiopian food and eating with my hands!

Thanks for stopping by xx

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Something major [Be Optimistic]

Card and penguin from Best Made Co. -nykeiko
This Thursday, something major is about to happen for us and we have been waiting a very long time for it. I'd love to tell you more but not until everything is confirmed! Hint: Furniture shopping time! Oh, that was a pretty obvious hint...

Sometimes I sound pessimistic but really I am just impatient. It is really difficult for me not have control of a situation and have things being dictated by other people's actions. However, I am glad the ball is finally quickly rolling now. With the positive/optimistic people around me, I am reminded that things always turn out okay!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

My #TBT = #ThrowbackTravels #2: Beijing 2009

Inside Beijing National Aquatic Center aka Water Cube in 2009

This picture was taken before (or maybe after?) jumping into the Olympic-sized pool inside the Beijing National Aquatic Center also known as the Water Cube; where the 2008 Summer Olympics swimming competitions took place. 25 world records were set here and Michael Phelps famously won 8 gold medals.

Okay, so the public was not allowed to swim in the actual pool where the competitions took place but we were allowed to swim in the warm-up pool which was almost just as big and awesome. To be able to swim in the pool, you had to pay a fee, make a photo ID and pass a lap test (3 full-length laps if I remember correctly).

The pool was awesome. I had never swam in an Olympic sized pool before but have been in plenty of crappy pools to know the difference. It felt super easy to swim in there and it is as if you were swimming in an open ocean. I wasn't imagining it. It is known to be one of the fastest pools in the world. Because of its record pool depth, the waves dissipate down to the bottom creating less disturbance to other swimmers and perforated walls on the side also absorb all the waves. It was the best swim of my life- in a pool. I think the best swim of my life was during our trip to Hawaii.

The Water Cube is now the venue for multiple shows and cultural events as well as home to a huge water park, complete with slides, spa, wave pool and more. I guess they needed a way to make money and selling souvenirs and charging for tours and pool memberships was not sustainable.

I'm glad I had the opportunity to swim in there just about a year after the 2008 Olympics and a year before it was teared down for renovations.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

My own Q&A #2: I like facials and massages

1. Cats or dogs?
Both. As long as they are cute and cuddly, I will love them.
Although I am allergic to cats, I still cannot resist getting close to them. The cats you see in the picture above belong to my sister and whenever I see them, I like to rub my face in their fluffy fur. They are totally worth the sufferance.

2. Most expensive indulgences?
Getting a facial or massage.

3. What is something in New York you are not used to?
Saying metro instead of subway. It is the Canadian in me.

4. If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Remove ALL pollutants and toxins in all our food, clothes, skincare, farms....everything on planet Earth. Do you know how big of a difference that would make for humanity as well as nature? Everything would be less complicated and I bet the risk of cancers would diminish by a million fold! I would also worry less about what I put in my mouth or put on my skin.

5. What is one food you love but can live without.
What is edible in the world that I have not tried and therefore passively know that I can live without it. Okay, that's not fair. Hmm.. in this moment, I would say beef tartare. I love salmon tartare more :) I can live without okra too.


Thanks for reading!

Marimekko Sample Sale [March 2014 NYC Sample Sale]

Marimekko Vellamo pattern
I was really looking forward to shop the first-ever Marimekko sample sale in New York but ended up buying nada! I was looking for more things in this particular pattern-Vellamo- but only found one clutch and I do not need more clutches. I also wanted to get this Fatboy x Marimekko doggie lounge bag which was only $40 (was $179) but we do not own a dog. What else? See the review here on Racked NY.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Weekender: David Barton, Williamsburg, Standard hotel, Umami burger, SoHo [almost Spring]

This past weekend started off with a kick-ass workout at David Barton gym (Astor Place) hosted by Racked NY. Everyone was in good spirits during the "Pain and Pleasure" class we endured on Friday night. I almost didn't make it to the end! I never ever do weights except when I carry my grocery bags but even that's often too hard for me. In fact, just the other day, I couldn't carry one bag of Trader Joe's grocery and called Dave from the subway for him to meet me half way. So pitiful I know. During the class, we used weights up to ten pounds to do squats, curls and sit ups. Three days later, I am still sore but loving the reminder that I indeed DO have abs even though I haven't seen them in a while! After class, I ventured deep into Brooklyn to join some friends for dinner and played with a cat the entire night.

The next day, soreness made me stay in bed. I slept in, woke up to have some cereal and then took a nap until 2 p.m. It was such a beautiful day and antsy Dave was all dressed with his coat on waiting for me to get the hell up already! I had an out-of-town friend waiting to meet up as well. We asked him to venture into Williamsburg since he's been cooped up in Manhattan for a few days and every single person needs to experience Williamsburg at least once right? We are going to miss Brooklyn when we move out so we took advantage of a beautiful day to walk around south Williamsburg for hours discovering the new shops and cafes that have sprouted up this past couple of years.

Mast Brothers store
When we met up with my friend, we took him to Blue Bottle coffee and the indoor Brooklyn Flea/Smorgasburg venue on N 5 th. Afterwards, we grabbed drinks at the Counting Room and then hopped on the L train to Manhattan and straight to the Meatpacking district. Here, we went to the rooftop bar at the Standard Hotel (the one you don't have to dress up for) and got a couple of horrible drinks. My gimlet, I didn't even finish it. The bathroom was nice though. For dinner, we wanted to take him to Spice Market but with the hour long wait (it was already 10 p.m.), we opt to try another place. Umami burger! A place we have wanted to try since it opened. The Truffl'd burgers are as good as it has been raved about. The truffle is over-powering but since I love truffle, it was perfect!

Someone went bun-less (not me!) but then ate all the fries later..

Umami burger
The next day, my friend and I spent almost the entire day shopping in Soho. I didn't buy anything except a card for a baby shower and a $45 lunch/dinner. I didn't take pictures but I have my eye set on a jacket from Mackage which I got to try on at the store. I have been looking for a lightweight, water resistant long coat for quite some time. I'm going to wait for a sale and snatch it up when it does! Oh and I also saw the cutest printed dress at Club Monaco but it was over $229 and with the chilly weather still lingering, I had no desire to try it on! Actually, on the model, it doesn't look so alluring anymore. Buuuut then maybe it will look better on me because I'm more tanned. Gosh I like to talk myself into buying things...

That was pretty much my weekend! How was yours??

Thanks for reading! xx

Thursday, March 13, 2014

My #TBT: #ThrowbackTravels #1

Yu Shu Palace , China  2009
This was taken by me on a set of a documentary about an adopted girl and Tai Chi . I was "working" (I worked for free but all expenses paid and generous stipend included) as an interpreter for 3 months in China. I saw some really amazing hidden places. This was an old abandoned palace in the middle of a developing city. I can't remember the name of the city where we shot this.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

My own Q&A #1: I like surprises

on my birthday in 2012. 

1. What is your dream job?
To own my own little boutique in the heart of a growing neighborhood so I can stand out and be unique.

2. What would you sell?
Curated pieces of things I love. I know there are many stores that do this but it would make me happy to share things I love with everyone. Perhaps things I have spotted during my travels and desired. Examples: Alpaca throws from South America and 99.99% silver bracelets and cuffs from Yunnan, China. And to be interesting, I'd even sell imported cheese curds from Quebec which I love!

3. What makes you happy?
Surprises. Anything unexpected including small gestures.

4. What would you like to change about yourself but have difficulty doing so?
Being grumpy when not fed.

5. Favorite song of all time?
Oof. This one is hard. I have so many! I usually fall in love with a song and then kill it by playing it non-stop. Right now, I'm looping 'XO' by Beyoncé and 'Wake up' by Arcade Fire.

Thanks for stopping by

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday isn't so bad when this happens...

Here is what happened to me this morning. I was running late for work and realized that I had forgotten my unlimited Metrocard at home the moment I entered the station. Fuck! I have to go back home and I'm late (and lazy!). It must be Monday! When I didn't feel like going back home, I contemplated using the cash cards I have but didn't feel like wasting money so, I decided to pick up a Metrocard that I spotted on the floor when I entered the station. I checked the balance and there was $18 on it! I swiped myself in with a big smile and happy I didn't have to go back home or spend money. Then, I wondered about the person who lost it. He or she is probably not smiling when he/she figures out he/she lost his/her card. But who cares! I have lost my unlimited Metrocard more than three times last year. I probably made whomever found it a very happy person (before I cancelled the card)! Give a little, take a little.

I am not even sure why I was so cheap about using my cash Metrocards especially when most of them I got off the floor (I have Purell!!). You see, after MTA started charging $1 for metrocards, you can assume half of the metrocards you see on the floor have been dropped by accident since people are now re-using them. We have picked up almost $100 worth of rides by now. Really! One time, we picked up a card with $50 on it at the Yankee stadium! It was definitely put to good use when my sister and parents visited last year.

So my advice. Pick up that clean Metrocard (the clean ones have higher chances of containing money) and use Purell! Oh, and farther the cards are found away from the subway the better since it's less likely someone threw it because it was empty!
It is free money and better for the environment?!


Thursday, March 6, 2014

nykeiko shops::J. Mendel sample sale [March 2014 NYC sample sale]

J. Mendel sample sale 2014
I love J. Mendel sample sales. I love them because I get to see and feel beautiful runway gowns. I guess I could also do that in the retail stores but at the sample sales, there's no judging and even if I think 80% off a $10,000 gown is not good enough, it is perfectly okay. The staff won't hate me. This year's sample sale is comparable to last year's sale. It was certainly more fun for me last year since I was actually shopping for a gown (for my wedding!). There was also a small private sale back in October but the March one is so much better!

The sale opens to the public today and it will be great to shop for the early risers as well as the afternoon birds since I read that there will be midday restocking of samples. And samples my friend, is what you want to wait for. Will the sale be worth the trip midtown (27 Union Square West)? Well, read on to find out.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

There's a sale! .... [Emersen Fry outlet]

There's an Emersen Fry outlet sale going on right now exclusively for Cup of Jo readers which I must share! Sharing is caring n'est ce pas?

The prices on regular EF stuff isn't unreasonable but the sale definitely makes it more affordable. The size options are dwindling so hurry!

Here are some effortless chic pieces and outfits I wouldn't mind grabbing up!

The Berkshires: icicles

I love icicles. They are so pretty and can get so big as water continuously drips. I always have these gruesome thoughts about being under them and what would happen if one broke off. Does anyone think like that or is it just me? Anyway...

They are not only pretty to look at but they can be very useful as well. Back at the cabin, we cooled our whiskey with some icicles. What a nice touch!