Sunday, January 31, 2016

Life Hack: Makeup Brush Stylus

I just stumbled upon something pretty amazing: you can use a makeup brush as an iPad/iPhone stylus! I've only tried this out with the Naked 2 brush, so I can't say for sure that it works for all brushes, but if you happen to have an old one lying around, you can give it a try. All it takes is a little bit of water to make the brush head damp (not too much water!) and it works like a charm. For me, this is quite exciting, because drawing on the iPad is rather difficult with just a finger, and a plastic stylus is not much better. The Apple Pencil is too expensive and otherwise useless for me to invest in. A multitasking brush is perfect, as the brush feel makes it more realistic as well. ◊

Saturday, January 30, 2016

MDIP – Fun While It Lasts

This post has bits of Food Friday, Style, and Review all mixed together, so might as well put it all in a MDIP. My next eight weekends all have something going on; I thought it best to enjoy my free time while I can, by means of a shopping/chill day with friends.

The F line was off schedule yet again, but we made it to Bay Street in the end. A scrumptious lunch at CPK – I ordered the Hawaiian BBQ Chicken – really hit the spot. I've decided that pizza is my favorite, hands down. No trip to Bay Street is complete without a visit to Lush. I bought the Rub Rub Rub Body Scrub to help exfoliate when I feel icky, and it smells incredible – jasmine, mimosa and orange – all my favorites. I also picked up the Cup O' Coffee face mask, again, for exfoliating and awakening. I've tried BB Seaweed multiple times, but I can never remember my opinion of it, so I picked up a sample of it yet again. Not pictured are two soap samples, Karma and Honey I Washed the Kids, that I grabbed for my friend who was sick. Clearly, I'm crazy about Lush, but I can't help but love how my backpack smells after buying all the things.

I wasn't planning on buying clothes, but I ended up getting a cardigan from Old Navy. It's pretty much a blanket with sleeves, so heavy and plush, but it drapes very nicely, as you can't see from the photo because I am not a model (it looks better in person I swear). I believe it was on sale, as there was no tag, but the sales associate estimated it was $50, and I ended up paying half that amount. I also saw a cute sweatshirt from Forever 21 that says "Wifi & Caffeine," which I loved so much as wifi and caffeine are my life, and the & (ampersand) is my favorite glyph, but the sweatshirt was top shelf, so I didn't even bother to look at the price.

After shopping, we all hung out in the dorm, listening to music, drinking coffee, and watching Agents of Shield. It was nice to be able to relax and have fun ("derp around" as my friend calls it) without being serious about school, even if only for a few hours. To top it off, the dining hall was actually good for dinner (BBQ brisket, steak fries, and salad). Tomorrow, it's back with the nose to the grindstone, with internship orientations and extracurricular interviews, and then quite some time before I have a free weekend again (not until April I believe). It's good that everything's settling in and making sense; I look forward to seeing how this semester plays out. ◊

Saturday, January 23, 2016

MAC Russian Red Gift Unboxing

My friend sent me a very late Christmas gift: the Russian Red matte lipstick by M.A.C. It's a color I've had my eye on for a very long time, and I'm so excited to have it. Aside from the brilliant color, the lipstick itself isn't so interesting. The funny thing about it is the ridiculous amount of packaging it came in: a box within a box, all stuffed with piles upon piles of tissue paper – 17 sheets to be exact – and all for a single lipstick. Anyhow, I was amused and impressed by the packaging, so I wanted to share that. Here's to many a strong red lip in the future! ◊

Friday, January 22, 2016

#obsessed: Lush Life – Zara Larsson

It's been a while since I've done a #obsessed music post! The last week or so has been incredibly hectic, as I've been moving back into the dorms, starting classes again, and in general struggling to get this semester up and running. Things have finally settled down again after I set up all my technology and organization strategies. The plan is to take reading notes and lecture notes by hand, but since lecture notes are usually messy, I retype them into Evernote, which syncs across my devices. This is especially helpful because I can start retyping them on my iPad and finish them in my computer, or take the finished notes with me on the iPad. Since my Education 190 class requires a computing device, having the iPad is a godsend, otherwise I'd have to lug my old, heavy Macbook Pro all the way to the opposite corner of the school, uphill, two days a week.

Back to the music, usually I detest Spotify ads, especially the ones with the sound of traffic advertising for Spotify Premium, but sometimes the ads are ok. I mention this even though I can mute the ads on my computer because Spotify comes in three tiers, depending on the device. On the iPhone, the songs are shuffle only, with ads. On the computer, you can select whichever song you like, whenever you like, and I can easily mute ads. On the iPad, song selection is allowed, but it's harder to mute ads, so I usually don't bother. And sometimes this is really good.

My #obsessed song is one of those songs that I heard in an advertisement. It's actually a bit of an old song, released June 2015, but it was never popular in the US. Which is a shame, because it's really catchy. I also love the lyrics, because most breakup songs are about people ending relationships, but this one is about a crush that didn't work out, which I can relate to more. Also, Lush is one of my favorite stores, and this reminds me that I should go buy another face mask.
"It was a crush // Now I might have went and said too much // But that's all it was // So I gave it up"

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

iPad Mini 4 Unboxing

In the first image of my last post, you may have noticed a white box with a line on it peeking out of the corner. That is no ordinary line; it is in fact the side view of the iPad mini 4! Though I don't do tech spec reviews, I thought it would be nice to do an unboxing, as it is a relatively new item, released Fall 2015. There's not as much in the box as I thought there would be, with the only items being the iPad itself, an adapter, a lightning cable, and a small packet of instructions, with two small white  stickers inside. I've noticed them in every Apple product I've bought, but I still can't figure out what to use them for.

I opted for the silver, WiFi, 128GB version. The silver matches my other devices, and I don't like the idea of using the iPad for phone calls, so there was no reason to choose WiFi+Cellular. However, I wanted to make sure there was plenty of storage, as my 16GB iPhone simply wasn't enough for all the apps and files I wanted. As of now, it seems as though 128GB is a bit excessive, but that might fill up quickly as time goes on. 16GB is definitely too small, so for anyone else considering an iPad, I would say a 64GB device seems like a happy medium. ◊

Monday, January 18, 2016

MDIP - Davis

As today is MLK Day, this first weekend since being back at Berkeley was a three day weekend, so I decided to take the shuttle up to UC Davis to visit a friend and drop off her Christmas gift. I took pictures Snapchat style to spice up a rainy MDIP post. Not pictured are the cows (moving too fast, so I missed it) and the Farmers' Market (got there too late, and we had to go eat). I stayed overnight as her roommate was out of town. UC Davis is a sprawling campus, and the dorms are very nice. I had a lot of fun and it was so great to see WW again. ◊

Friday, January 15, 2016

Out with the Old, In with the New

I am back in Berkeley! It's been a busy two days packing and unpacking and clearing out old stuff from last semester and setting up all the new things, but it's all done now and I get some time to blog again. Classes don't start until Tuesday, but I'm visiting a friend at Davis over the weekend so I won't have time left anyway; the next two posts are going to be scheduled. I'm so glad to have this blog because for some reason I have a need to overshare every single thing that goes on in my life, but I feel like I'm bothering people if I'm constantly chattering about every single mundane thing I've done all day. I don't know who reads this blog, so that aspect is a bit risky. However, the benefits outweigh the costs; I complain less when I put my thoughts into writing.

Over break, I stayed busy coaching speech and debate. That perspective really made me appreciate how incredible the coaches I had were when I was in high school. I was also trying to fix my sleep schedule, but that didn't work out so well. Since my classes don't start until 10am at the earliest, that's not a huge concern time-wise, but more sleep is good health-wise. The main concern last semester was my roommates' lamps on at night, so I bought a blackout curtain. I'm surprised at how well it works, and I plan on buying more to cover my entire bed.

I'm still trying to figure out what classes to take, especially for breadths. I plan on meeting with the advisors of every single department I'm in, from regular L&S to political science to the education minor to the public policy minor, at some point this semester. I want to graduate a semester early so I can do an internship in DC or Sacramento, and then travel once I graduate. This should give me an idea of what the next 6 years of my life should look like. It might seem excessive, but I have to plan, otherwise I'd fall apart from being an anxious mess. Using the anxious energy to organize keeps my life together.

Speaking of spreadsheets and travel, in a flurry of excitement one night (or perhaps one morning?) my friend and I ended up planning an 8 week trip across Europe and Asia. Funnily enough, we both had an interest in a sudden urge to go traveling, with each thinking the other would shoot down the idea, so nothing was said. At midnight, she said it anyway, and until 4:30am we bantered about locations, itinerary, timing, and recorded it all in a my life organizer (I love Google Sheets).

I am ready and so excited for this semester. I bought a few notebooks and gadgets for myself while shopping for Christmas presents, and I am definitely looking forward to using them. My schedule is even better than it was first semester, which is saying a lot. I only have one class on Monday in the afternoon, the rest of my classes start no earlier than 10am and end around 4pm, and I have no class on Fridays again. I would take another class to fulfill a breadth requirement, but I've looked through nearly all of them and they're either a) too advanced, b) already full, or c) overlapping with my current classes. I'm knocking out a PoliSci and two Education prerequisite classes this semester, so I'm not concerned about not fulfilling requirements, but at Berkeley there's always a constant pressure to do more. However, I intend to make it a priority this semester to explore Berkeley and have fun and do well and be full of goodness and take care of myself and the people around me. ◊