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My Notes

Planning a trip to Da Nang Vietnam

November 6, 2017

So……………………. Yah……………………

Okay

Kaden and I are planning a trip to Da Nang Vietnam. We’ll be going for 3days and 4 nights at the end of this year. I didn’t want to spend new years away from the kids. I also didn’t want to spend Christmas away from the kids too so we decided to go in between.

If you’re guessing it, you’re right, I’m going without the kids.

Well, okay, I wanted to go without them but we’re taking Tyler. Josh and Andrea are going to spend time at my mother’s place. My mother in law will be getting a break from the kids too this way.

So, Kaden and I booked our flights, booked the hotel and now we’re just browsing sites and blogs to see what kind of things we want to do when we get there.

Da Nang
City in Vietnam

Da Nang is a coastal city in central Vietnam known for its sandy beaches and history as a French colonial port. It’s a popular base for visiting the inland Bà Nà hills to the west of the city. Here the hillside Hải Vân Pass has views of Da Nang Bay and the Marble Mountains. These 5 limestone outcrops are topped with pagodas and hide caves containing Buddhist shrines.
Area: 1,285 km²
Weather: 26°C, Wind N at 6 m/s, 83% Humidity
Local time: Monday 8:48 AM
Population: 1.347 million (2016)

+ Reference from Google.com

We decided to stay at http://fusionsuitesdanangbeach.com/

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My Notes

walk

November 1, 2017

Sometimes we all just need to take a walk and step back from what we’re doing. Just let everything be, put it all aside and take a walk. Clear our minds, breathe a bit and take a break.

Kaden and I did just that a couple of days ago. We put the kids to bed, we went out for a walk and took some pictures.

가져가지 마세요.

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My Notes Reviews&Ratings Seoul, South Korea

Studio Monique Hong Dae | 스튜디오 모니크 | 홍대 미용실 | 발레아쥬 | 옴브레 | Balayage Ombre

October 28, 2017

So…. I really needed a change. Not just mentally but literally, physically I needed a change. I wanted to get my hair done. I’ve been wanting to get it done for a while but things came up. I had stuff to take care of, we had a funeral to attend, etc etc family matters were our first priority so “getting the hair done” was the last thing to do on my list.

I wanted to get a bright blonde #balayage done but I knew that would have to take a couple of sessions, so I went for a bright ash tone.

I got my hair done at Studio Monique (designer MJ) in Hong Dae. MJ is literally the balayage and ombre expert in Korea. She worked in LA for about 4 years and came to Korea with her specialized skills.

Foil work in the process.

MJ was really precise and careful with her work.

Although she’s only been at Studio Monique for just about a year, it seems like she has a pretty solid list of clients who support and love her work.

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My Notes

가을이 오는 그 때…

October 15, 2017

As Autumn approaches us, everything gets a new coat of paint.

The trees, the flowers, the sky and even us.

As the colors on these leaves show off their beauty, as the calm deep blue sky makes it’s way to us, a beautiful person, a warm-hearted soul left us, to be with God.

She was wonderful. She was the most bright, beautiful person I knew. There aren’t enough words to express what kind of person she was.

She always had a smile on her face, she was a little girl full of wonder and full of happiness. She represented beauty, she represented an angel, and she made sure all who were around her were taken care of.

She was Kaden’s grandmother. My mother-in-laws’ mother.

May you rest in peace grandma.

We love you.

My Notes Seoul, South Korea

Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 The UFO Art Lens

October 11, 2017

For those of you who already know, I recently got the Sigma 18-35mm Fstop 1.8 Art lens A.K.A. Art lens A.K.A. UFO lens.

Yes, it’s great. Yes, it’s lovely. Yes, it takes great pictures. However, I came across a couple of discussion sites and groups that stated the Sigma 18-35mm lens to have a focus problem. This was AFTER Kaden had bought it for me (it was my Thanksgiving present from him although I was not sure why I was getting a Thanksgiving gift when it was only Thanksgiving, I found out later that Kaden had bought himself something and to get the guilt off his chest he bought me this. He did say that he’d been wanting to get another lens for me so that we can take better pictures when we go to Japan this winter, but I doubt that’s the real reason why..!!). Anyways, long story short, I saw that people were having focus issues with this lens and that some people had bought the USB dock for Sigma lens’ and fixing the issue themselves. I was not going to go through that long and “patience” requiring process so I decided to contact the nearest Sigma service center and just get mine fixed through them.

The hassle with that though is that I have to take my camera body in with the lens. Meaning: I don’t have a camera until Thursday or Friday at the latest. Meaning: I can’t take any pictures for a full 4 to 5 days.

After going out once with the lens though I love how it has an inner zoom (which means that the lens doesn’t extend out when I zoom) and also the colors and brightness of a Sigma lens is just so beautiful. It makes anything and everything look nice.

I had a hard time getting my pin (focus) bang on and later found out that it wasn’t me but the lens (I found out when I took a picture of my calendar, I focused on the number 7 but the actual picture came out with the focus on the number 6). But I think once it’s been fixed, I’ll be able to take this camera and take some pretty cool images. I kind of want to go out and explore and see what interesting things I can grab with this lens but I’ll have to wait.

So far, other than the focus issue, I’m loving this new baby and miss it already!!!

My Notes

In the next 10 days, I’ll grow stronger

September 7, 2017

In the next 10 days, I’ll grow stronger. As a mother, as a woman, and as a human being, I’ll be stronger.

I live with my in-laws. Kaden, Josh, Andrea, Tyler and I live with my in-laws, in Korea, in a villa that is 4 levels high. I know I know, it’s the typical “Korean style” of living. Living with the in-laws, with children and living in a 3 bedroom small place. But really, it’s not that typical life.

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My Notes

Why I went from “trying Veganism” back to “eating meat”

September 6, 2017

As most of you might already know, I love food. I love to eat, I love to cook and I love to show off the food. About four years ago, before having Andrea, I wanted to try Veganism. I wanted to apply it to my diet, the products I used and whatever else I could apply it to. The main reason I started was that of the culture shock I got when I came to live in Korea.

In Korea, there is a thing called BO SHIN TANG. It’s dog meat soup.

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My Notes

Coffee

July 24, 2017

When coffee is a MUST.

Literally, there are days when you just want to drink a full liter of coffee.

Today is one of those days. I couldn’t sleep well last night, I woke up every three hours to breastfeed Tyler. Josh slept next to me and he would move around so much I had to literally lift him up and put him back. My legs felt like they were going to fall off. My arms felt like they were going to break every time I had to lift Tyler up. During the last feeding, I stayed up during the whole time in between feedings and to sleep when Tyler slept after 8 am. My routine has been messed up even before giving birth to Tyler and now it’s even worse.

I usually drink a cup of coffee during the morning. Right when I wake up, I usually have a cup during breakfast or I drink a cup between 10 am – 11:30 am. During the last couple of days, I’ve had to drink another cup during the afternoon, so that I can try and stay awake.

Three kids and a house that’s the size of a high school classroom doesn’t really satisfy everyone’s needs. The only way we can all stay alive and be mentally fit is if we go somewhere during the day or if the kids all nap at the same time. Now that the kids are on summer break, it’s even worse. Just typing this makes me want to close my eyes and sleep right now.

When I had Josh and when it was just the two of us during the day, Josh would play, eat when it was time to eat and sleep really well. He didn’t really give me a hard time. His tantrums didn’t really start until he turned two and now that I look back, he was just a really good baby. Andrea, on the other hand, was really a sensitive baby. She didn’t sleep during the day, she didn’t sleep during the evenings too. She wanted to be held all the time and she would want a feeding every 1.5 to 2 hours. She cried so much that her voice was gone by week 3. Doesn’t that just say it all? A baby, 3 weeks old, losing her voice cause she cried so much. She was breastfed until 22 months and she didn’t sleep through the night until she was about 18 months old. Going through two totally different kids, Tyler is like an angel. Doesn’t really cry much. Would feed, play a bit and then sleep. He’s two months old and already he sleeps through the night. Only cries when he wants to be held right before a nap. Isn’t really fussy at all and sleeps so well it’s amazing.

But with two other kids running around during the day (even though they go to bed around 8 pm) Tyler can’t get much sleep during the day with all the noise. It’s like he can only get good solid sleep during the night when the whole world is quiet. With an infant in my arms and two kids running around or fighting all the time, it’s like life is a big mess. A big gigantic MESS BALL.

And that’s why I need my coffee. A good cup of coffee every morning so that my mind won’t get thrown into the trash. It might not exactly be COFFEE that keeps me together but I’d like to think that it is. Because during those few minutes that I get to drink my coffee, I get to just focus on that one cup of coffee and nothing else. Thanks to my mother in law.

Uh, I feel like after this, I’ll need another cup.

My Notes

The Blind Side

June 20, 2017

Today I sat on the cold floor of our room, in the corner, watching my infant sleep in his crib, going back and forth between him and my small little iPhone, I watched the movie “The Blind Side”.

I remember seeing the preview for this movie and I remember thinking to myself how an obvious, touching movie this would be. It would probably just be one of those movies where a white, rich and smart woman helps out a poor black boy. Well, I thought wrong. This movie opened my mind, it opened my thoughts and made me think.

This woman opened doors for this young man, took him in (in her house literally) and changed his life. She became his legal guardian, basically adopted him and made sure he got a chance in everything a young person deserved. A chance in things most kids take granted. Education, a home, a family. LOVE.

(Image Provided by Wikipedia)

As I watched the ending credit for this movie, I thought to myself..

What can I do for my children?

What door can I open for my children?

Am I a good parent?

Am I a good person?

Am I doing the right thing?

So many questions came up on my mind, I asked myself so many questions but couldn’t answer one of them. Not a single question. I couldn’t answer a single question. It was like I was taken into “zone out mode” and just kept asking these questions to myself that I couldn’t even answer.

I have been thinking Josh a lot lately. He’s changed. Like all kids, he’s changed since going to kindergarten in Korea. AND I HATE IT. I hate how he talks and acts. Why? Korean kids have this tone of voice that they ALL DO. Josh was doing it. He sang like all the other kids, he talked like all the other kids and he was turning into… well.. this kid that seemed so… NOT MY JOSH. The innocent, sweet and charming child that was always so bright and charming was changing into .. well.. just one of those other Korean kids that always asked weird questions, talked in the bit rude tone of voice and was getting very annoying. It was like I had some control over Josh in Singapore but now in Korea I didn’t. It was like.. I don’t know he just seemed so distant. It was as if I had no control over him. Not that I’m trying to make him into anything but my thoughts and standards are still pretty firm.

As I had Josh and as hi turned one, I promised myself that I would 1. always be there for my child not matter what, 2. make sure they live in a good, clean environment and 3. always be loved.

No this list is getting longer. I feel like I have number 4 and the numbers keep rising. I want them to be able to run around freely, I want them to be able to choose what they want to do and how to do it. I want them to be able to live freely and have the brains to choose wisely. I want them to have a good education and I want them to be able to enjoy life.

While watching this movie, I found myself thinking…

“what in the world am I doing to make sure this so called list is achieved?”

This woman was already successful, she had a great house, a GREAT outfit and lived the ideal successful life. She already had everything to be able to PROVIDE to others. Not that this movie was about her and her success but it made me think AGAIN, do I have to make lots of money to be able to give my children those same options? Do I have to be successful and have a “place” in life where my voice will be heard and noticed?

Hmm…

As I sat on the floor and watched this movie on my iPhone, all these things came up in my mind and I could only come up with one conclusion.

GOD.

Money could probably help my kids, a title on a slick business card could probably help my kids but it all came down to that one word, GOD.

People say the phrase “Good lord, help me. Oh my God please (blah blah blah)” so I decided to rely on my God and pray for my kids. Pray for them and pray for me. So that I could hear God’s voice when he talks to me and make sure that I take his lead. Make sure I listen to him and be careful not to drive my kids crazy. Cause I know in some situations I’m going to have conflict and want to make them into something I want them to be, not what they want to be.

My Notes

“Really Really”

June 12, 2017

I used to love to listen to K-Pop. It was like one of those things that I just HAD TO DO. As if it was something I was obligated to do I would download the top 100 songs every week, and listen to every single song. I would look up the lyrics and memorize each song.

No one told me to do this, no one pressured me to memorize the songs but I did it.

To keep up with the “new generation”. I didn’t want to be the girl who didn’t know any of the songs.

I wanted to be the girl who sang many many popular songs at karaoke.

But as soon as I got married and had kids, that all just slipped away. It was just something stupid. It was a waste of time and it was meaningless to me.

But once in a while, when I would come across a song or two on the street I would want to download the songs and listen.

Usually, I listen to classical music, praise songs or just pop. But once in a while, I would hear a song on the street from one of the stores that are blasting the audio and download K-Pop songs to listen to. WINNER’s empty was one of them and now…

WINNER’s REALL REALLY is another one of the songs that have made me click the download button and drag into my iTunes library.

I guess WINNER is a K-Pop group that’s on the top of my list.

My Notes Reviews&Ratings Seoul, South Korea

A TWOSOME PLACE COLD BREW | 투썸플래이스 콜드브루 원액

April 5, 2017

I seriously have NO idea why they named this coffee shop ” A Twosome Place”. Is it just me that thinks this name is weird???

When I first mentioned this to Kaden, Kaden said to me that this coffee shop was a pretty famous place. I was like, “WHAT?!”.

But now, I’m used to it. It’s still weird to me. But I’m used to the fact that it’s a weird name and it’s a bit less weird if you say it shortened in the Korean way that everyone in Korea says it. Everyone just calls it Twosome. As in 투썸. Which does seem a bit better cause the word twosome does mean a pair or a pair of people together. I just think putting “A” and “Place” before and after is a bit awkward. It’s like saying it’s “a pair of people place”. I don’t know, maybe I’m just really weird.

Anyways, when I first went to Twosome, I fell in love with their cakes. Their cakes were not too sweet but soooooo delicious that every time Kaden and I would go to this “place’ for coffee, I would order a slice of cake no matter how full I was. I would try a different slice every time I went and would want more. It was like one slice was never enough. Then I fell in love with their Royal Milk Tea. It was the best milk tea I had tried (hot or iced it didn’t matter) and a slice of cake with a cup of milk tea would just be the best treat for me.

I was a “Starbucks Girl” if you know what I mean. I would always drink Starbucks coffee when I was out and nothing else. Well, if I was in Canada then I would either have Starbucks or Tim Hortons. When I first came to Korea, there wasn’t a Starbucks near my place. There was only “A Twosome Place” and a local small coffee shop that a lady ran by herself. So I really didn’t have a choice on my way to work. Then after I moved in with Kaden, I went back to Starbucks. It was like I had returned home.

Now, it’s back to Twosome. There isn’t a Starbucks near my in-law’s place, but there is a Twosome. Recently, when Kaden and I went to have some coffee. We found out that they had a new menu called the Cold Brew coffee. It was the best black coffee we had tried in a while.

So when we heard that they sold the extract of the cold brew coffee for 14000 won KRW, we bought a bottle and brought it home.

This bottle of the coffee extract is good for 6 months in the fridge and is easy to make. Mix the ratio at 1:4, the extract 1 and water 4.

I love the flavor of this coffee so much that I want to drink two cups a day. I try and hold back, though. If you’ve tried this already, you probably already know that there’s a hint of chocolate flavor in this coffee. I love that. It’s not the sweet chocolate taste but the scent of cocoa. The coffee itself is very bold but very smooth and is really easy to drink. Very rich in flavor but not too strong and bitter.

This cold brew coffee from Twosome is right now, currently, my favorite coffee and I wish I could send some to Canada for my friends to try.

My Notes

Alone Time

January 15, 2017

It’s been a while since I’ve sat at a coffee shop, alone, just me, with earphones on and just focused on my blog or something along that matter. With my own music on, I’ve been sitting at this coffee shop with a cup of cappuccino (obviously no sugar) changing the colours of my blog and planning out what projects I’m going to be participating in this year.

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