Monday, July 28, 2014

I Got a Legal Name Change...


If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know that a few months ago I expressed my desires to change my name (more specifically, my surname) and just moments ago, I shared my conformation that I submitted my application.

And, during the times that I expressed my desires, I got a few backlash from people about changing my name and honestly, that made me so angry.

As a little rant, I just want to say, you don't understand why I want to change my surname. I can explain why but you would never feel the way I feel about my name. Instead of lashing out on me, I wish these friends would've just supported my decision to change my name. And those that did, I'm extremely grateful for. Despite them not understanding my emotions, they can see it from my point of view and encouraged to do what makes me happy.

I wish I can say, a name is just a name, but that'll contradict what I just have done. As I paid my fees and left Vital Statistics Canada office, I was extremely happy and, beyond thrilled to have a new name.

I mean no disrespect towards my dad and ancestors for giving me my surname for the past 20 years, but to be perfectly honest, I was never happy with my name.

I didn't share all my reasons to why I'm changing my name to my friends but to my blog readers, here's the honest truth to why I chose to change my name:
  • I absolutely hate anything to do with Chinese. As racist as that sounds, I hate my last name because it's Chinese. Hated it from a very, very, young age.
  • From a young age up til now, I feel embarrassed when I tell people my name. 
  • I hate it when people go Jessica "Wuuuu-hooo". I will scratch your eyes out if you say that to me.
  • I've always had a thing for long(ish) names. 5 letters or more is attractive (but not too long)!
  • My ties with my family isn't that strong.
  • I'm extremely unhappy with my surname for a while. It wasn't out of the blue - I grew up sort of disliking it. 
I didn't change it for a professional advantage, or because I like a famous hockey player (hint hint of my new surname), I changed it for me. I figured, I am of legal age, I've been unhappy and embarrassed for so long, and I don't even know if I'm going to get married anytime soon. All I wanted was a surname that I was happy and proud of, despite that it has no historical background.

When I do get married, yes, I do plan on taking my future husband's name but until then, I'm extremely happy for my new legal name (in 8 week!) and screw those who lashed out against me for changing it.

If this makes me happy, accept it. If it goes against your beliefs (whatever that may be), shut your pie hole because my personal happiness and desires doesn't affect you.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Recipe: Garlic Avocado Snack (1-2 Mins)

In my household, we are considered "healthy". Actually, I'm the only one that isn't too crazy about being healthy. I would still prefer McDonald's over the task of cooking dinner...

So, when I finally had my first taste of avocado a few weeks ago... holy moly, I am in love! I don't know why I never had avocados before nor do I understand why people would waste a perfectly food avocado on their face.

I'm not the cook in this household and in the relationship. As much of a princess I sound, I order out or get my food cooked for me (hurray for finding a man that could cook, eh?).

But, I managed to prove some good use in the kitchen. I've been cooking my favourite avocado snack and if you don't like avocados... then I don't even know you!

What you need:
1 avocado
1 small clove of garlic
1 pan

1. Cut your avocado and peel them. Dice them into small cubes.


2. Set aside your diced avocados. Grab your garlic clove and dice into small pieces.


3. Set your pan on your stove to low. No need to add oil or anything. Toss the avocado and garlic in.


4. Stir them around gentle for about a minute or so. You will start smelling the avocado and garlic really soon.


5. Enjoy!

The garlic isn't a strong taste when you eat it but you can definitely taste something different with your avocado instead of the usual taste.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Letter #1 - An Open Letter to my Ex

 

Dear what's your face,

You're a married man. We haven't talked for a few years since I cut you out of my life, and to be honest, I have no desire to keep in contact with you.

So, when you were off getting married to your "soul mate" whom you've just met a few months ago, I've been living on with my life and having a relationship of my own. My own soul mate.

I understand that your new wife is still out of the country, but that doesn't give you an excuse to start texting me.

I don't appreciate your efforts into getting back in touch with me. I don't appreciate you calling me "hun" in your messages, or telling me to have "wet dreams" when you bid me goodnight. I don't appreciate you dropping off instantly when I refuse your advances to meet up - why do you message me constantly and the moment I say no to your request, you flat out ignore me for a bit?

I'm not a home wrecker and never will be - especially if it comes to you. I don't plan on ruining what I have going on in my life. I don't plan on ever seeing you again, or "meeting up" with you again.

It's not that I hate you, I'm actually indifferent about you. I know you don't have the right intentions, and probably never will.

I'm happy you're no longer in my life. The thought of you bring a horrible pit feeling to my stomach. You bring thing ball of negativity into my life that I really don't need or miss.

So, for the sake of your own marriage and your lovely wife, please stop sending messages to hook up. I'm not down for that shit. I have too much to lose for just one single night.

Sincerely,
Your uninterested ex.

12:38AM Thoughts

I should be asleep right now, curled up in my bed, surrounded by fluffy blankets and listening to the faint sound of snores beside me.

As I'm sitting here, being wide awake from my spoonful of Ben & Jerry's ice cream, my silent surroundings (which is pretty rare) has got me thinking.

Now that I'm living in the present moment, I can't stop but think about my life in terms of loss moments and chances. In terms of loss time we can never get back.

I didn't want to spend time arguing with my loved one. I didn't mean to lose another night without him. I didn't want to lose days, weeks, months.

But, I did.

I took our time together for granted, thinking I got many more suns and moons.
I took our conversations for granted, thinking I can always share my thoughts and feelings another time.


Moments are lost, but at the same time, things happen for a reason, right?

Distance, in some cases, can strength a relationship. All the lost time is being made up right now.
All the heartbreak is being healed right now. All the happiness is being spent and shared.

Without those loss of moment, I wouldn't be where I am in my life. I wouldn't be sitting here in the kitchen, itching to crawl into bed. I wouldn't be cleaning out closets and buying home decor to make things feel more... homey. I wouldn't be living Downtown and feeling so... blessed and lucky.

My thoughts are, don't take things for granted. Don't take what makes you happy for granted. But, in a case where you might regret a few actions, realize that things happen for a reason and that loss will be replaced with something greater and better.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

How I Got Rid of my Acne

 

I don't want to brag but I'm lucky enough to have good skin. I rarely break out, never had any issues with long term acne or dryness, or anything along the lines of that. The only flaw on my skin is probably the blackheads on my nose which aren't too bad.

However, this month, for some odd reason, half of my face started popping up with pimples. I thought maybe it's time to wash my pillows and towels but still no clear improvements. I also thought about the food I could be eating but nothing that could cause a break out. I also cleaned my face very well so when all the things I normally try to get rid of pimples didn't work, I decided to toughen my facial cleansing routine.

 

1. St. Ives Naturally Clear Apricot Scrub for blemish and blackhead control.
I maintain my skin on a regular basis with this lovely scrub. I use it a few times a week depending on how I feel about my skin. It doesn't dry out my skin (at least, I believe this product shouldn't) but I cut back to exfoliating once per week, since starting this routine, which is usually on a Sunday. 

I use this product every morning to start my day. It has 2 added vitamins for your skin and cleans your face without drying out. Ever since using this facial wash, my acne started disappearing and my face feeling fresh and clean every morning!

Just before going to bed, I clean my face with this wonderful product. After a day in the city, my face feels fresh, smooth, and relaxed (surprisingly) by the end of the night. It deep cleans into your pores and gets rid of dirt without drying out your skin either. It also gets rid of make up but unfortunately not any eye make-ups.

With only those two cleansing products, my sudden prolonged break out was cleared up in a week! I started noticing the difference about two days into the routine but definitely cleared up my skin in about week, all while still using make up and without breaking the bank.

If you're looking for something new to clean your face with, I'd recommend the Clean & Clear. I think that made the biggest difference in my break outs.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Bellis Fair (Bellingham, Washington) Haul

As every Vancouvrite knows, heading down the States means a day of shopping for cheap and exclusive goods!

On Wednesday, my friend, Dee, and I went down to Bellingham via Greyhound for a day of shopping!

I haven't ridden on the Greyhound since the 8th grade and it was to Seattle with my mum. This time around, we chose to do the Greyhound because none of us drive. It's also my first time traveling with Dee out of the city.

I woke up at 6:15AM and left the house at around 7:15AM. The greyhound bus departs at 8:35AM. Dee woke up at 7AM... surprisingly she got to the station on time but left all her American money at home so I had to cover for until the local currency exchanges opened up.



I completely forgot that Dee was an inexperienced traveler. That being said, she asked a lot of questions (paranoid questions) about border crossing. She even brought along her purse that was filled with combs, make-up, cable and chargers... and while it's nice to have those, I felt like it was a waste of space in her bag. We're leaving the city for a day - pack lighter so you'll be more comfortable!! Her bag looked as though it was about to explode!

The bus ride to Bellingham was relatively short. We arrived at the Greyhound station to realize that we were in the middle of nowhere. Literally, there was no one around, no one walking, not even cars moving. I've never been to this part of Bellingham! I mean, all the times I've been to Bellingham was by car.

We eventually took a random bus to Downtown where the bus driver was kind enough to tell us which buses to take to where. Our first stop was Goodwills (because we've heard so many good things about it!) at Sunset Square. First of all, I didn't know Bellingham buses did not dispense any tickets aka proof of payment. I also didn't know buses were THAT small. Also, they don't even have an automated announcer for all the stops! The bus driver has to shout them out and most of them didn't bother with EVERY stop.

Oh my lord, thank goodness we encountered our bus driver! He was extremely helpful in getting us to Sunset Square. We also told him that we wanted to go to Bellis Fair later and he said it's the exact bus, and just come back to this stop. I love helpful drivers!

When we got into Sunset Square and into Goodwills... we were a bit disappointed. I did NOT find anything that was worth purchasing. I've seen millions of Goodwills hauls online and thought I'd have better luck here than back at home... but nonetheless, I think Value Village was better for me. The prices were only a SLIGHT cheaper than VV.

We later went to K-Mart which I found out was just another Target-like store. I only purchased two more bags of Spicy Cheetos and a bustier top from Nicki Minaj's line (ewww). The cashier we had was extremely hilarious though!

 

We then trekked our back to the bus stop to see the same bus driver again. He kindly allowed us to "finish our ride" to Bellis Fair... aka we didn't have to pay for that bus ride!

When we got to the last stop, the driver asks, "Are you guys from Canada? Because I've never seen you around before and you guys look completely lost!" 

And then I realized... holy crap, Bellingham must be a pretty small place if this bus driver says he has never seen us before. I also looked at the map and realized there only one public high school, and one private Catholic school. I also noticed that a lot of people on the bus seem to just know each other, and same with the kids. I love a small town but perhaps... maybe not that small? 

In Bellis Fair, we hit almost every store! I love WetSeal and Charlotte Rousse, and Rue 21! The Forever 21 and H&M were lacking... like surprisingly, we had bigger stores than them which also meant more items, and the prices weren't that cheaper than Canada. We also hit Target and Kohl's!

Target's Up&Up facial scrub; ELF's eyelid primer, eyeliner and total face brush; Claire's earring set; Make up remover cloths from Goodwills; Rimmel London Stay Matte Foundation' Goody's bobby pins.







Decided to start working out!
During our time at the mall, we also went to get massages: both from a massage parlor and the massage chairs in the mall... ugh, how I would love to go back for another massage!


On the way back, it was even worst! A few people had to get interrogated at the border so our bus got delayed... and this French couple beside us kept on making out on the bus... nasty.


Nonetheless, I loved everything I got and managed to keep my shopping trip under $100 USD! My cousin thought that was waaaaay too less to spend in the states but I personally felt happy, haha.

I think I might go back there sometime in August for the back to school and summer ending sales!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

7 Tips for Getting Over a Break-Up/Heartbreak

 

It's not life if we don't experience a few break ups and heartbreaks here and there. While there are some break ups that are for the better, majority of our relationships we have in life usually leaves us heartbroken, or perhaps, just a bit gloomy for a while.

I've had my fair share of break ups, and I had my first heartbreak last winter. I didn't have anyone to talk to (or, I didn't want to) which led me to become depressed and even had suicidal thoughts. I felt my heart aching and it felt like it just broke into a million pieces. I felt so lost without him and I honestly felt like I didn't want to live in this world. I didn't even want live in the same city as him anymore.

One of my best friend is going through her first heartbreaking break-up. It's been about a week already and I worry because she's spiraling down, similar to what I was going through. She's taking two Advil a day just to numb the pain. I had prescribed painkillers during the time of the break up but I knew if I took one, I'll want to consume the entire bottle in one sitting.

The same advice I gave to her, I'll be sharing it with you. Most of these got me through my break-ups.

1. Cry it all out
Letting it all out is the best way to start your healing process. I did it alone in my bedroom, mostly at night time when nobody would bother me. I mean, I didn't want my parents and my brother to find out how upset I was over the break up. I cried, and I cried. For how long? I can't remember but trust me, it wasn't a day. I just let everything out into my pillow before going to bed.

2. Surround yourself
Surround yourself with people, your loved ones. Surround yourself with hobbies, activities, events. Being with loved ones and keeping busy allows your mind to not think and dwell on the break up. It makes you feel much more productive and loved. Whenever I had alone time, my mind would slowly trek back to the break up, which led me back to square one. Heading out and reestablishing my relationship with friends helped me a whole lot. I didn't have to tell them why I felt so upset, and they didn't pressure me to tell either.

3.  Delete him/her off everything
As soon as I had my heart broken, I deleted him off my phone, my Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, everything! I even got rid of our messages together and photos. Messages and photos can bring back strong memories and emotions that will hinder your healing process. By deleting him/her off everything, you don't have to know what's going on in their life, who they're seeing, how well they're doing, etc. etc. Out of sight, out of mind.

4. Clean out your room
Along with deleting him/her electronically, throwing away physical items such as gifts, pictures, movie stubs, etc. goes along with it. Some people like to keep such items, but for me, I gave everything up because I knew I couldn't see or wear anything "The Boy" used to give me. To me, keeping the gifts felt like a constant reminder of losing someone I loved.

5. Go on casual dates
I'm not saying to jump back into the dating pool or meet new people as soon as you guys break up, but if you feel like you're ready to just meet new people, go on casual dates. It doesn't have to be serious, something like a coffee trip in the afternoon. Meeting new people makes you feel like there is someone out there for you after a break up. Meeting new people also means getting out and moving onto a new chapter in your life.

6. Get a make-over
This isn't about proving to your ex that he just lost someone smokin hot, it's about healing yourself. When I got my heart broken, I changed my look by starting wearing daily make up and dying my hair. Simple changes like a hair cut can change your mood in a positive direction.

7. Don't ask about him
If you guys have mutual friends, don't ask him about. Don't talk about him. If your friends ask you about him, tell them you don't want to talk about it. You don't need to explain yourself to other people. You don't need to see how he's doing or how he's moving on. You don't need to know if he's seeing someone new, or anything. Just leave it alone.

8. Get away
Go on a road trip! Get away for the weekend! I felt that leaving the city behind, even if it's just for a day, felt amazing! I was surrounded by good company, making new memories in a new city, and experiencing new experiences. Leaving the city behind with memories of your loved one is such a refreshing feeling. And trust me, by the time you get back, you wouldn't be too worried about your ex anymore.


Heart breaks are one of the worst things in life but trust me, you'll get through it. You'll realize that there is someone else out there in the world for you. It takes time to heal and in the end, it'll be worth it!

Hang in there :)

Monday, July 14, 2014

Book Review: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot


Henrietta Lacks, as HeLa, is known to present-day scientists for her cells from cervical cancer. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells were taken without her knowledge and still live decades after her death. Cells descended from her may weigh more than 50M metric tons.

HeLa cells were vital for developing the polio vaccine; uncovered secrets of cancer, viruses, and the atom bomb’s effects; helped lead to important advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and have been bought and sold by the billions. Yet Henrietta Lacks was buried in an unmarked grave.

The journey starts in the “colored” ward of Johns Hopkins Hospital in the 1950s, her small, dying hometown of Clover, Virginia — wooden slave quarters, faith healings, and voodoo. Today are stark white laboratories with freezers full of HeLa cells, East Baltimore children and grandchildren live in obscurity, see no profits, and feel violated. The dark history of experimentation on African Americans helped lead to the birth of bioethics, and legal battles over whether we control the stuff we are made of. - Goodreads.

Holy. Moly.

I borrowed this book from my local library and finished it within 2 days. Literally, it's that big of a page turner!

I'm not going to lie, I know nothing about Science and Biology - I mean, I studied it back in school but it was never my favourite subject. So, naturally, since leaving high school, I don't have interest in learning about (medical) science.

However, despite this book being based upon biology and science (don't worry, there's more dramatic events than pages of pages similar to your bio textbook), I was drawn to it because of the history. I knew nothing about HeLa cells. I was drawn to the history, to this woman named Henrietta Lacks and what was so great about her cells. I was drawn into the 1950s racism issues and how they treated "coloured" people in the past.

Everything that drew me to this book was nothing related to Science, so don't fear for those who were on the same boat me.

This book makes you feel stuff a normal book normally wouldn't do. This book made me feel grateful for HeLa cells, it made me angry for the actions Hopkins as done, it made me sympathetic for the Lacks family.

It's amazing how so many great things came from HeLa cells/Henrietta but it's such a shame for what the family endured. It sort of breaks your heart to know someone of African descent can be taken advantaged just like that.

I thought Skloot did a wonderful job tracking down and perusing the family for interviews. I loved the pictures and the updates she provided on each character she had written about in the book. These pictures are just regular family pictures but to know their story makes the photos looked... haunted. It's raw.

I loved the book. Skloot flipped from history and present times and follows a great timeline. She shares intimate details of the family (with their consent). And for those who aren't great with science, Skloot breaks it down to the most simplest way to understand the cells. It's raw and real.

I highly recommend this book. Not because your body was once injected with HeLa cells, but to know the woman behind it and her story and tragedies endured just to discovered these cells that gave us the vaccines and knowledge we know of now.

It has nothing to do with science or history but rather to acknowledge who Henrietta Lacks was and her contribution to modern science. Without her cells, a lot of what we know now wouldn't be available or otherwise be different.

It's a fantastic read, a quick read that keeps you hooked on pages after pages.

Rating: 5/5

Friday, July 11, 2014

Hurray for new glasses!

My glasses from Clearly Contacts finally came in!

I normally wear contacts but I've decided to let my eyes breathe for the next few weeks so I decided to start wearing my glasses. I like my old pair but I figured I wanted a change too.

Plus, my Carmen Marc Valvo was on sale for only $50! Not to mention free shipping and handling! So, naturally, instead of spending $200+ on glasses at a local store, I got them online.

Left: old pair / Right: new pair
I loooove it!

I originally wanted the Purple Matte glasses from Derek Cardigan's newest collection.

But when I went to my local CC retail store to try it on, I didn't fell in love with it :/
I mean, everything looked great on me but I just didn't love it as much as I thought I would.

So, I chose to stick with the current pair I got :)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Canada Day 2014

Oooo, I'm a bit overdue for this post but I just got around to wrapping it up.

This year, I celebrated Canada Day with one of my best friends, Dee and together, we hit Canada Place for the biggest celebrations. Also because we wanted to catch the fireworks at 10:30PM. I haven't been in Canada Place for Canada Day since high school!


Canada Day 2014 by thesushibox

The day was gooooorgeous! We're talking 30 degrees sunshine. We got there about 2PM and killed time with the activities and exhibits. We also caught the (crappy) parade.



The parade was soooo shitty. What a waste of time! The first part with the cops were pretty cool but the rest of it was just shitty. The entire parade was made up of a bunch of random Asian associates and clubs... like seriously, what's so Canadian about that?! It's like whoever planned this group didn't bother to try to get any entertaining groups to walk in the parade.





Needless to say, it was a fun day but I don't think I'll visit the parade next year.

Also, after the fireworks, we were in the middle of a fist fight between two groups. The victimized group got away but one of the members were caught by the attacking group and literally, all 6 guys were beating down on one guy until the sirens came.

Why can't these groups just leave their violence for another time? Canada Day is a day for family and fun.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

#2014BloggerChallenge - Summer 2014 Bucket List


Summer in Vancouver can be a hit or miss when it comes to the weather. For example, last week it was burning hot for two days - so hot, when it's 11PM at night, you still don't need to cover how.

And lately, it's just been cloudy, chilly/windy, and even rainy. Sometimes, we have both rain and sun
together at the same day. I guess you can say Vancouver weather is extremely bipolar.

Although summer is halfway through, it's still a rather... different summer. This year, I plan to:
  • Get hired from my internship
  • Hit the clubs more 
  • Spend more quality time with my friends
  • Bloooog
  • Read
  • Improve on my French
  • Meet new people (duh!)
  • Get a tan!
  • Get more active
And umm... honestly, I don't even know what to do with summer because I'll be busy with school and my internship!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Friday's Five Ways to Party Smarter (Financially)

Just in time for the weekends, I present you five ways to party financially smarter!
You can always have a great time without breaking the bank!


1. Stop by the lounges, not the clubs!
Ideally, the first thing that comes to mind on the weekends is probably hitting the hottest club(s) in town and that's the biggest way to drown your bank account.

Depending on the club and its hours, clubs include paying for coverage AND coat check (unless you opt to freeze in the early mornings) and usually overpriced drinks. Not to mention you're paying for NO services.

Why though?

Why are you spending so much to head to a building filled with loud, sweaty, (perverted) people?! The music is so loud, you can't even talk to your friends, and the place is probably so crowded, you'll lose your group!

Instead, hit the lounges or the pubs. There is no coverage and coat check fees. The drinks are much cheaper, (c'mon, compare a $4-8 shot to a $15-20 shot!). These places usually play great music, loud enough to hear the lyrics and low enough to hear your friends. Not to mention, lounges and pubs are a great alternative to meet (professional) people and some places even has a dance floor with a live DJ or band!

Lounges are much more intimate and classy to meet up and meet new people compared to clubs.

2. Stop taking taxis
Taxis are expensive unless you're lucky enough to live in the same place as your friends to split the cab ride. However, consider alternatives such as checking up on late night busses (assuming you're not fully drunk yet), or taxi alternatives such as Uber. If you can drive, borrow a friend's car or consider a service such as Car2Go.

3. Stop buying drinks for everyone
This tends to happen more when you're in a club, but seriously, you gotta stop buying shots for everyone. If it's a birthday, then yes, treat your friend to a shot or two, but don't buy your entire group of friends shots.

If you guys are planning a huge ass "let's get wasted" weekend, nobody is going to remember you buying them a shot. You can spend up to $35 on a shot for a person and they won't remember it. Many of us assume that the next friend will buy the next round, but that usually doesn't happen. That friend couldn't care less that you're taking care of another round of shots, as awful as that sound. They're probably shit faced already!

Buy shots for yourself. Once you start buying them for your group, they'll expect you to do the same for the rest of the night.

4. Avoid cocktails 
Skip those stupid fruity cocktails that's eating up your bank account. Cocktails are normally filled with more ice cubes than alcohol. Switch to beer (on taps). Not only is beer cheaper, but they come in a bigger bottle/glass for half the price and they taste great too! (PS: if you're looking for a guy, guys like it when girls drink beer *winkwink*)

5. Keep items with you at all times 
The amount of things my friends "misplace" when they're drunk is such a wasteful of money! This is a no brainer but I feel like many of you guys still forget to look after your cellphones/cameras. If you're going to be piss drunk, give your valuables to your best friend to look after! I've been to so many parties where girls would leave their phones lying around on a table and forget about it. Many of people are nice enough to leave it alone but nowadays you can't trust humanity as much. When I'm not going to drink as much, I don't mind looking after a few items while my friends are drunk. I return it once they get home or the next morning.

I like to carry a smaller bag when I head out for the night. Not only is it small enough to stay with me at all times, it's small enough so I consider the necessities for the night instead of throwing in things "I might need" and have the risk of losing more items.

 
Have a great weekend and stay safe!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Channeling my inner Miley Cyrus


Happy hump day!

To cleanse your mind of Miley, here's Mr. Wiggly and I: