Weekend Delivery from Freckled Fawn

Freckled Fawn does it again with free shipping on any purchase off their site, so I had to jump on it. Got my items today, and I’ll be using most of this for my January PL pages. Since tomorrow starts a new month (already?!), I’ll be overlapping my project time with these 2 months. I’ll also be expecting the next kit from my Studio Calico sub to arrive soon. Only one thing left to do before I get started, and that’s print more photos!

In this haul: Cork banner, wood chip emoticons and letters, and small arrow paper clip sampler.
In this haul: Cork banner, wood chip emoticons and letters, small arrow paper clip sampler, and teal star/heart dot zipper pouch.


SF Restaurant Week 2015

Once a year, select restaurants in the SF area participate in a week long (or in this year’s case, 10 days) event in which you can try out specialized menus designed exclusively for it. Reservations are highly recommended, especially if the place of your interest happens to be popular. This year, 2-course lunch menus were offered for $25, and 3-course dinner menus for $40. New to this year is the “discovery menu”. For $85 and at select locations, it offers a variety of tastings that include food and wine pairings. I was honored to partake of this year’s event with a small group from Gogobot (will have a post about this awesome site and app in the near future). The restaurant of choice was DOSA on Valencia, which specializes in South Indian cuisine. I have visited their other location off of Fillmore a few years ago and enjoyed their food, so I was happy as this would refresh my memory of that day. Our reservations were set for dinner, which consisted of 3 courses:

Course 1 – Minced Chicken Samosa image

I absolutely love samosas, so this was a very quick decision to make. In addition to the chicken, it also had a nice mix of Indian spices, cilantro, onion, and cabbage. The mint and tamarind chutneys for dipping were a nice compliment.

Course 2 – Spinach and Fennel Dosa image

The portion of this savory crepe was nearly enough to kill my appetite before the last course. It came with sambar (a lentil dipping soup) and coconut and tomato chutneys. Made a mistake of biting into a whole chili from the sambar, so my mouth was on fire for a few minutes. Hopefully I don’t ever have to experience that again.

Course 3 – Murgh Malai Korma image

This is chicken with a creamy sauce of spices and tomato. It also came with a side of coconut rice and what looked like a yogurt based sauce. So glad that I chose this because it helped cool down that accidental surge of heat I got from the dosa. For dessert, I split an order of their Bourbon Chestnut gelato (their menu for this changes every so often). It was sweet relief for any remaining heat I had, which wasn’t much, thankfully. Despite that one setback, it was a great experience overall. I will try to come back again, especially since I came across their White Truffle Masala Dosa. I gotta try anything with truffle at least once!

Don’t Hate, Exfoliate!

Wednesday. Middle of the week. Hump Day. Whatever you call it, I use this day to give my face some extra TLC. Aside from using my Clarisonic Mia every 2 days (one of my favorite facial products ever), I wanted to look for something that I could use at least once a week. While randomly browsing at Lush one weekend, one of the employees asked if I was looking for anything in particular. After explaining my plan to her, she recommended the Mask of Magnaminty. It immediately reminded me of the Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque that I had used while in college. The mask has a nice minty scent, plus it contains honey and aduki (AKA azuki/adzuki) beans to help soothe and exfoliate the skin. This is great for acne prone or combination skin, which I have. I apply this to my face and leave it on for about 10 minutes, then hop into the shower and remove it before continuing with my normal cleaning routine. It’s been close to a month since I purchased this, and my skin feels smooth and refreshed every time I’ve used it.


How the mask looks like in the container. Those specks are the aduki beans.

January Loot Crate – Rewind

I had to reactivate my subscription almost immediately after cancelling it once I found out what would be featured in this month’s box.


Here’s what was inside:

  • Retro Arcade Skinny Tie by Black Tie Geek – It’s Space Invaders on a freakin’ tie! Others may just take it for a funky design. If only they knew…
  • Voltron Blueprint T-Shirt by Flophouse – I’m pretty sure I’ve watched almost all of the episodes of the cartoon, and I’ve played with my cousin’s Voltron toy on several occasions. They’d be jealous if they saw this shirt, fo sho.
  • 8-Bit Sunglasses by Loot Crate Lab – This one joins the all black pair I purchased a few years ago. Sweet!
  • Star Wars Comic Book Issue 001 by Marvel – Not gonna lie, I was pretty excited to know I’d be getting this. I’ve been following this franchise ever since I was a wee Padawan.
  • 1 Point : 21 Jiggawattz 10-Doh! Figure from Squid Kids Ink – The 10-Doh! series features 3 inch figures that resemble old school NES games. This one even came equipped with its own Zapper Gun!
  • Comic Notebook by Unemployed Philosopher’s Guild – Ever wanted to create your own comic book? This mini version with 60 blank pages and special stencils makes it possible.

All Loot Crates also come with a special themed pin. I’ve only received 2 boxes so far, but I just might keep my sub for another month or so just to see what exciting things will be in the next one.

ipsy January Glam Bag – Fresh Start

The theme of this year’s first Glam Bag is nothing short of appropriate. A new year calls for starting off with a clean slate, or from ipsy’s point of view, “A kickoff so clean the possibilities are endless.”

Here’s what I received in my bag:


  • BellaPierre Shimmer Powder in Whesek
  • Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush
  • La Fresh Eco Beauty Be Good. Good Day. Moisturizer
  • Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow in Treasure
  • Velvet 59 Velvet Rose Lipgloss in Noisette

I liked 3 out of the 5 items I received.


La Fresh Eco Beauty Moisturizer – I used this before heading to work this morning. The consistency wasn’t too thick, and it didn’t feel heavy on my face. The scent was OK. I would describe it as “earthy” , but it was light enough to barely notice. I’ll continue to use it until it’s finished.

Pacifica Eye Shadow – I have a few shadows that are similar in color (copper/brown with a bit of shimmer), so this was easy to like. I wore it during the day while running errands one afternoon, and it lasted well into the evening. Also, a shadow that doesn’t crease is a bonus.

Elizabeth Mott Shadow Brush – Haven’t used it yet since I have quite a few shadow brushes already. The bristles are really soft, however. Saw some good reviews with this from other ipsy members, so I’ll get around to it eventually.


BellaPierre Shimmer Powder – Disclaimer: If it has a hefty amount of shimmer in it (makeup specifically), I probably won’t use it. Not really a fan of the stuff, and unfortunately this wasn’t a product to sway my opinion. The color is a dark shimmery gray. The swatch on my hand doesn’t look too bad. I would use this as a liner or maybe in a smoky eye, but I’ll probably just end up giving it away.


Velvet 59 Velvet Rose Lipgloss – Although the color of this was nice and neutral, it felt sticky and needed retouching. Not only did the description of the product state that it smelled like roses, it also tasted like them. Nope, nope, nope! If the flavor of a lip product doesn’t resemble anything close to something edible, I’d rather prefer it have no scent at all.

I do hope that I end up liking all of the products from at least one of these ipsy bags that I get this year. I’ll just have to see what happens next month.

Leave the pen. Take the cannoli.

Had to post this since I live in the Bay Area. Love the sketches he features of the places he saw in SF.


amtrak in the morning
Late last month, on the weekend before Christmas, I took a day in San Francisco, just to get out of Davis for a little while and sketch things on ground that slopes a bit. I didn’t have much of a plan beyond “go to the Ferry Building, have a cannoli, draw loads”. So I did. Here’s my sketch from the early morning Amtrak train, above. It’s not cheap, traveling the Amtrak, but it’s a lovely journey and you get free wifi.

So I got to the San Francisco Ferry Building, where they have the Saturday Farmer’s Market. I like getting here on a Saturday, and finding the little stall inside that sells Italian cannoli filled with chocolate, and sugary messy lemon-filled ‘bombolini’, little doughnuts. After cleaning my face I went outside to draw a panorama, which took about an hour and a quarter. Those sugary treats made me work…

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What I’ve Been Up To With Project Life

Putting together my PL pages has been pretty sporadic, but when I get around to it, I highlight a few events that have occurred every month. This gives me some time to take a good amount of photos before I print them out (thanks Costco for the ridiculously cheap price per print), and also contemplate on how I want to do my layout. I’ve again come to a slow point in productivity so that I can take more pictures. So far it’s been fun using different elements from my Midnight Core Kit, Simple Stories Sn@p pack, and the kits I’ve ordered from Freckled Fawn and Studio Calico. I can literally spend hours looking through them to find the right embellishments or journal card to use. There really is no limit to what you can do with this!

Check This Out – MyFab5

Amazing how a hash tag on social media can lead you to something pretty awesome. Case in point, the MyFab5 app. Like most people, I enjoy food. A LOT. I’ve seen some users and friends on Instagram tag their amazing food pics with #myfab5. Out of curiosity, I did some research by first checking out the hash tag, then searching for it via Google. The latter led me to their website. This and their mobile app provide a way for users to list their top 5 restaurants from various cities across the US. The site also has links to download the app either via Android or iOS. I haven’t been using this for very long, but I will say that I’m addicted. Finally, a place where I can feature most if not all of my documentation of edibles. Users have the option to upload the photos for their favorite places, plus others that aren’t part of their Top 5, via Instagram or from their phone. Unfortunately, there is one downside with uploading from the phone. The photo doesn’t always turn out well because the app will only allow a small square frame to position it in. That, and there’s no way to zoom in/out on your photo before uploading it. So if you want to feature the extreme closeup of that juicy steak you had for dinner, I would suggest posting it on your IG account first before transferring it to the app to get the full effect. I’m not sure how long the site or app have been around, but it’s worthy competition among the mobile food guides when it comes to searching for a place to grab your next meal.

Here are some screen shots of how their Android app looks like:


Birthday Freebies

A fun thing about birthdays is that if you know where to look, you can snag some free stuff. I have email lists and rewards programs to thank for that. For food and drink, I got a free beverage for being a Starbucks rewards member and a Frequent Steeper at David’s Tea. I also got a free dessert during my dinner at Sino for being on their email list.

The beauty freebies are just as good! Here’s what I was able to get this year:

Sephora offered either a NARS lip pencil set or a Peter Thomas Roth facial care set for their Beauty Insiders. Seeing that this was the first time I had to choose, I looked up what the suggested retail value was for each one. I went for the Peter Thomas Roth set since I’m well taken care of with the lip products.



As part of the ULTAmate Rewards program with Ulta, members received a coupon to redeem for their Complete Eye Palette. It includes 4 shadows and 1 powder liner. I got the Indie palette, which is a mix of purple/brown shades with a highlighter color in the middle (the photo does not do much justice, unfortunately).


I’ve only started visiting Peninsula Beauty after finding out that they had the hair color I was looking for. I received an email which I could present for either a free OPI Classic, Essie, or Morgan Taylor nail polish. I chose Essie’s Mademoiselle, which is one of the brand’s best sellers.


Haven’t tried any of the items from this freebie haul yet. Most likely will once the birthday month is over. I still have some more celebrating to do!

Happy Birthday to Me!

Mango cake from Red Ribbon Bake Shop. My favorite!
Mango cake from Red Ribbon Bake Shop. My favorite!

As of 12:45pm today, I start a brand new year and hope to add more fun and wonderful memories with friends and family. I kicked off the birthday weekend with an awesome dinner at Sino with friends from high school. I plan on chilling out today, then have lunch with my family tomorrow. The following weekend will be another dinner with the best friend. I’ve been getting a bunch of greetings via text, Facebook, and Instagram since last night, and am definitely feeling the birthday love!

As an added fun tidbit, here are some famous people that share my birthday:

Historical figures

  • Benjamin Franklin, scientist
  • Anne Bronte, author
  • Michelle Obama, First lady and wife of President Barack Obama


  • Muhammed Ali, boxer
  • Dwayne Wade, point guard for the Miami Heat


  • Betty White
  • Jim Carrey
  • James Earl Jones
  • Zooey Deschanel


  • Calvin Harris
  • Tiesto
  • Li’l Jon (what?!)
  • Eartha Kitt

Happy birthday to us and everyone else having one today. Go, Team Capricorn!