Thursday, November 20, 2014

Valentia Even Glow Vitamin C Serum

One of the most important ingredients for aging skin is Vitamin C. Before receiving my Valentia Even Glow Serum, with 20% vitamin C, I had tried many vitamin C serums from Avon to GNC. They were all very oily, greasy, and stinky. It was like putting medicine on my face. The Valentia serum is very light and fresh, skin quenching, and has a pleasant citrus-Y scent. Not at all what I expected. I immediately saw an instant glow on my face without the tiny glitter particles that a lot of companies hide in their beauty products. It was a natural healthy glow, not a fake one. I've been using the product for two weeks and can see it evening out my complexion.
Topical vitamin C works as a antioxidant to boost collagen which gives you youthful firm skin. It also heals and restores sun damaged skin. Topical vitamin C is a must in my anti-aging skincare routine alongside SPF, sun hats, minimum sun exposure, exfoliation, and daily cantaloupe consumption. Other great ingredients and benefits in this serum besides reducing fine lines, are super antioxidant oils, organic rosehip seed oil and sea buckthorn oil to lock in moisture. Green tea extract, another potent antioxidant. Botanical hyaluronic acid for firmness and elasticity. Resistem, with natural plant stem cells to detox and protect skin from stress and aging. Simply put...REPAIR REFRESH RENEW! This one's a keeper!
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My New Cassani Fogless Mirror

A shower mirror has been on my wishlist for years and I finally got the opportunity to try the Cassani fogless shower mirror! Although there's a man on the cover of the box I think women can benefit from it in many ways too. Having a mirror in my shower now makes shaving facial hair and my nightly beauty routine so much easier. The steam in the shower opens your pores and softens your skin making for a closer shave. I use the mini facial razors from the dollar Japanese store which hang perfectly on the wall mount holder. No more red skin irritation from shaving on dry skin. I have a facial mask obsession and find the mirror convenient when thoroughly rinsing off my face. It will also come in handy when rinsing off hair dye. I can catch any spots I might have missed on my hairline or scalp. Usually I have to step out of the shower dripping water to check out my hairline. Having the mirror up in the shower opened up the space, making it visual and room like. You can see I'm already enjoying myself in my new Happy Meal Monster High glasses.
The Cassani mirror was a cinch to put up. All there was to it was putting up the self-adhesive wall mounts and letting them set for a few hours. Easy peasy! The mirror has anti-fog nanotechnology so it never steams up. I can't believe I went all these years without a mirror in my shower! I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Hello Kitty Con

Happy 40th Hello Kitty! I survived! I survived the long lines at Hello Kitty Con on opening day! The night before I studied the layout of the venue on the map online. The top of my list was getting Hello Kitty designer Yuki Yamaguchi's autograph. To my excitement she was actually doing Hello Kitty drawings in addition to autographs! They were limited to the first 40 people in line. I lucked out! She was hidden in a corner in the marketplace. Got autograph....check! Next destination, line for event merchandise! Not happening...I'll get to that later!
Party City was there passing out Hello Kitty birthday balloons and raffling off a giant HK birthday cake. A
scrapbooking booth! Yay! I purchased a scrapbooking kit for $20. It was the one that was featured in Amy Tangerine's scrapbook workshop. I noticed the price went up $10 the next day! Now it's $50 on ebay. Lucked out again!
There were Sephora, Dylan's, LoungeFly, Sanrio booths in the Marketplace but I figured I could find their merchandise outside of the convention. Why stand in line for an hour. The booths were so packed you really couldn't even see the merchandise anyway. What I wanted was event merchandise from the pop up shop upstairs. When I got to that giant line I was told it was closed and to come back in two hours. Ok let me go check out the vintage shop then.
I was looking forward to seeing the vintage exhibit and store and seeing all of my childhood Hello Kitty treasures. Growing up in grade school I was known for my Hello Kitty and Candy Candy collection. My yellow HK plush was being sold for over $100, my chest was $90, and mini stationary set for $40. I didn't see any of my pencil cases. I'd love to have an original bubble gum scented eraser or heavy duty HK scissors. They were the best! I remember being bored one day in my bedroom and used those scissors to cut out the carpet in my room! My parents weren't too mad because there was nice hardwood floor underneath.
Next door was the art gallery where there were some art pieces and posters for sale. Also a giant birthday cake.
Leaving the art gallery there was another long line to get into the Target game room featuring Target's mascot Bullseye the dog. I would have loved to have taken a picture with him! That line was closed too. There was a stage where characters performed, the giant photo op coin purse, and a Hello Kitty house with a DJ in the center of the convention. I tried getting into the pop shop line again and it was still closed! It was stuffy, overcrowded, and getting hot so I went back outside for some more free strawberry HK yogurt and to buy a bottle of something to drink. I wanted to buy lunch from one of the food trucks but there was no place to sit. Everyone was sitting in the street. I found a shady spot under a tree to lean on and eat my yogurt. The pop up store line was outside now and people were standing in line for 4 to 5 hours in the heat! After I cooled off I went back inside to checkout the art school and Sanrio bus photo op lines and they were still closed so I headed out to the JANM.
The "Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello kitty" exhibit at the Japanese American National Museum's was offering free admission during the convention for attendees. The air conditioning was a relief! I darted toward the gift shop to see if there was any convention merchandise in it but there wasn't so I bought myself a "Hello!" bobble head because I knew I wasn't going to get any event merchandise.
The crowd was smaller and it was so nice and cool. The exhibit contained a nice selection of unique HK vintage items and art, Hello Kitty eye candy galore!
On the second floor of the exhibit I found an empty restroom (no lines!) a comfty couch and outlet to give my feet a break and charge my phone. People were going in and out of their workshops. I left and headed down to catch the "Guys Love Hello Kitty Too!" panel. It was really cute and their perspectives were funny. The panelists were software engineer Oliver Juang from Silicon Valley, Prince Robbie founder of Haus, a cosmetics company, Marty Garetti- Monkichi super fan, and Linas Garsys-founder of Malfunction records. There were quite a few guys at the convention. I saw Paul Frank too!
I was hungry so I figured I'd go back to the Chado Tea Room at JANM to get something to eat and hopefully get the collectible #hungryhunt pin but they were out! I headed back to the convention to try and get in line for art school and I just made it. Anime artist Camilla D'Errico was teaching. During class Katy Perry was causing a commotion next door in the vintage shop.
After art school I walked back to the Target line which was permanently closed now so I checked out the tattoo shop where they were giving out free tattoos. Katy Perry was inside getting one.
Everything was coming to a close, even though everything seemed to be closed throughout the day. I was exhausted and went into Little Tokyo to grab some sushi, seaweed salad, and tea. I met some funny gay guys who stopped to ask me where I got my purse. They said they saw me at the convention. I always attract gay guys with my purses! lol
Will I attend next year? Even though it was oversold, yes. But I'll make sure to attend an extra day to make sure I'll be able see everything and shop. The venue should stay in LA, in Little Tokyo. Maybe they can add an extra day or two to even out the crowds, have more seating, line control, and air conditioning. Pass out Target bags at the badge pick up so people won't be double dipping. I heard the fire marshal locked people out of the convention to stand yet again in another line just to get in! I really enjoyed the Hello! exhibit at JANM. Maybe they can put the vintage portion of the convention inside there next year. Maybe JANN can have a Hello Kitty "and friends" exhibit in 2015. And who knows I may go on Halloween dressed up as a Harajuku girl!

Monday, November 3, 2014

NEW from Neil Diamond- "Melody Road"

He's baaaack and still looking good! Neil Diamond is back with a new album titled, "Melody Road." He is an American icon, a classic, with his unique, one-of-a kind rich enveloping voice. But you already knew that! Growing up, I was one of those kids whose mother continuously looped his vinyl album, "The Jazz Singer" over and over again. I remember my mom and my God mother going to his concert making friends with B.B. Kings niece who they met in line. This collection is very reflective, dreamy, with storytelling, love stories everyone can relate to representing the past, present and future. My favorite song on the album is "Seongah and Jimmy." It's a pretty song, charming, and has a lot of melodic stuff going on in it. I also like "Alone at the Ball," I visualize the people in the story in my mind, like a music video. These songs could be used in movie soundtracks. Also "Ooo...Do I Wanna be Yours." It got me moving my feet. I think I would appreciate this music even more listening to it live in concert. Look out for his upcoming tour in 2015. I think I'm getting my mother tickets. We'll make it a night of reminiscing. An outdoor venue would be nice with lots of wine. That's the vibe I get from this album. "Melody Road" is available right now at iTunes and Amazon. Don't forget to check out the Official Neil Diamond website. or YouTube channel. Disclosure statement: I participated in the Neil Diamond Melody Road album review program as a member of One2One Network. I was provided a free album to review but all opinions are my own.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Blessing of the Animals

Sunday I took Nina to Long Beach to her first interfaith blessing of the animals event at Rosie's Dog Beach. I subscribe to Justin Rudd'sHautedogs.org newsletter. That's where I find all these cool dog events to take Nina. Long Beach, CA was named top dog-friendly city in the U.S. by Dog Fancy.
I think that's community activist and organizer Justin Rudd in front of the procession. He just flew in from Kenya from a service trip. There was a nice variety of interfaith representatives there. I just missed the Buddhist rep that was there last year. Interfaith leaders for this Sunday's Blessing included: * Fr. Michael Reardon, St. Bartholomew Catholic Church * Rabbi Steven Moskowitz, Temple Israel * Bishop Chris Carpenter, Bishop of the Reformed Catholic Church Community of the Resurrection * Ryan Grabill, Sound House Church, lead pastor * Rev. Ava Park, The Goddess Temple of Orange County, founder and Presiding Priestess * Jesse Oakes, Parkcrest Christian Church, family ministries pastor
Nina got smudged in the belly by the Priestess, Rev. Ava Park. She looks scared of the Roman Catholic priest. I think it was the olive branches he was holding and blessing her with. The Rabbi and reformed Catholic Bishop were really nice. He, the Bishop, mentioned Nina's Pham's dog who was effected by ebola. There was a funny moment when one of the young cute Christian pastors began to speak. A duck in the crowd started mockingly quacking loudly... waaah...waaah...waaah...waaah. Everyone laughed.
There were farm animals, exotic animals, reptiles, birds, and cats in their Sunday best wearing pearls and bow ties. Pugs! A lot of dogs. Someone brought cute little hedgehogs. The sick and smaller animals were blessed first. The service animals were blessed. We all stood in line for our individual blessings. I've always wanted to go to the blessing of the animals at Olvera St. but this is better at the beach during sunset. I liked all the interfaith leaders and multiple blessings.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Introducing Singer-Songwriter Mary Lambert

My first impression was right on. After seeing Mary Lambert for the first time in her "Secrets" video and on Bravo's "Watch What Happens Live" with Andy Cohen last week, I thought to myself, "She's a flaming Taurus!" I looked her up on Wiki to confirm my impression and her birthday is the same day as mine! We share the same Taurus birthday! Taurus women are known for their voices, sensuality, strength, love of food, and keeping it real. I was instantly hooked on her music after listening to her new song "Secrets" for the first time. Talk about "keeping it real!" It's a very freeing and catchy song you can listen to over and over again. Every song is equally addicting.... "Chasing the Moon," "So Far Away," "Wounded Animal, "Rib Cage," "Heart on my Sleeve," "When You Sleep....." She gets cool points for her version of Rick Springfield's "Jessie's Girl." I still get teased over my excitement of getting water thrown on me by Rick Springfield while he was singing "Jessie's Girl" at my first concert at twelve in northern California. "America" opened up for him. Ha! You might remember Mary from her performance with Macklemore, Lewis, and Madonna, at the Grammys while "Queen Latifah memorably married 33 same-sex couples." She was nominated for two Grammy awards for "Welcome To The Age of My Body." I like that Mary's voice and music sound authentic. Lately so many new female artists try to sound 'folksy' singing in weird fake baby voices. What is that? It drives me batty especially in commercials. Men do it to. Another reason her voice and songs sound authentic is because they're inspired by personal events and struggles in her life, about self-empowerment and beauty standards. Mary says, “I felt like there were a lot of songs coming out about self-empowerment and challenging beauty standards, and I wanted to write a song along those same lines, but in my voice. It's easy to paint a pretty picture and tell everyone to love themselves, but it's way more complicated than that. There is so much shame and guilt in our society, and I think it has deprived a lot of people from living fully. We're all facing battles. We've all had someone who has hurt us, so let's talk about it. I believe vulnerability is what will save the world. I wanted to point the lens at myself in hopes of inspiring others to do the same. This song is my dirty laundry, and that's actually really freeing. Now I can walk around with accidental pieces of bagel in my bra and eat it anyway.” You can find Mary's music at iTunes and Amazon. You can check out Mary's official website HERE or find her at Facebook. *Disclosure statement: I participated in the Mary Lambert Heart On My Sleeve album review program as a member of One2One Network. I was provided a free album to review but all opinions are my own.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Martha Stewart Living October -Costuming with Honeycombs and Streamers

My double cover Halloween issue of Martha Stewart Living had a few things for Halloween that caught my eye I thought were creative and simple. I've always liked paper honeycomb balls and streamers. They're convenient for pop-up parties I give from "Houseparty" and "Orgullosa." I never would have thought of using them in costumes as fun hair fasteners and pink streamer wigs. "To replicate the look on the left, remove the cardboard backing, open the ball up, and secure it in place with bobby pins. For the look on the right, trim the cardboard bases of a few flower fans so they conform to the contour of your head, then secure them in place with bobby pins." Studly Punk-ins "The hardware store provides plenty of inspiration for punk rock pumpkins. Thoughtfully placed nails, brads, wire, spikes and safety pins become glinting mohawks, and piercings."
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