It doesn’t seem like that long ago when we were battling through this freezing cold blizzard of a winter, trying to make it to Christmas vacation. Or is that just me? Anyway, January and now February have somehow come and gone and while I am excited about the onset of March (I mean, who wouldn’t be? It’s March!), I would like to take a minute to look back, reflect and appreciate the good parts – and products – of the year’s first two months.
Starting with this: my Starbucks 2015 planner!
Back in about November, Starbucks Korea started their “challenge” where customers need to order 17 coffees (three of which are the seasonal drinks) in order to earn enough “stickers” to exchange for one of their Moleskine x Starbucks planners. Now, I’m not exactly a betting woman, but give me a challenge involving buying things, and buying caffeinated drinks at that, and I am in. In fact, I think I drank enough Toffee Nut Lattes to power all Guri’s electricity grid. Anyway, I felt like I was doing my thing for the team (myself)… although I did happen to earn enough to get Gavin a planner as well. And no, I’m not taking any questions on the amount of money I spent at Starbucks over the Christmas period.
A favourite that I have been getting back into is Aveda’s Hand Relief. The parents of one of my students gave me this as a birthday gift in 2013, and for a long while I didn’t use it. For the past little while, however, I have had it sitting on my desk at work, and try to remember to apply it as much as possible (I’m generally very forgetful with hand creams – although that does not, I repeat, does not, stop me from buying them ridiculously frequently).
As you know from some of my whingy posts, the past winter in Korea was bone dry and incredibly harsh. I actually went through a pretty bad period with my skin, which I will be posting about for all to see in the next few weeks. However, one thing that has got me through (just) is slathering my skin in both Bioderma’s Hydrabio Masque and Nature Republic’s Super Aqua Max Sleeping Mask. Gavin also helped by giving me some of his Aveeno Stress Relief Moisturising Lotion which is ultra hydrating. Basically, in this Siberian wind, you need something that is just going to block everything from getting into your skin. These three do the trick.
As for my new life in Malaysia, I have learned real quick that the sun here is no joke. So, on my first proper shopping day, I treated myself to Avene’s Sun Care Very High Protection Lotion for Children SPF50+. Firstly, yes, I know it’s for children, but I much preferred this texture over the others. Having really light skin, it’s important for me to take care of it and to use sunscreens that actually work, and also that don’t make me feel/look like a sticky white ghost. It’s a delicate balance. I’m giving this a whirl and enjoying it so far.
An app that has already come in very useful in my first few days in Malaysia is Uber. Who’da thunk it? The light rail (train equivalent) here seems to be really efficient, but if something is off the grid Uber comes to the rescue. I don’t know if you know, but it’s hot here, and my skin ain’t made for catching rays. So, we hop into a private car and pay in advance and kick back and relax instead. All of the cars we have ridden in have been incredibly clean and the drivers are so friendly. I also really like how it has their details so it’s secure, and you can see where the car is on the map. And also it charges your credit card online so there’s no fussing about at the end. It’s so good.
One last thing – the Korean children’s game gong-gi! Yep, working in a kindergarten does funny things to you, and one such thing is getting obsessed with schoolyard games. Gong-gi was started in the Korean war, where kids used pebbles to play instead of the plastic, weighted “pebbles” that exist nowadays. As I was excitedly telling my mum how to play, she casually said, ‘oh yes, it’s just like jacks’… which I realised yes, it is. You throw up one gong-gi and then have to pick one off the ground and catch the first one. Repeat for all, and then the next level you need to pick up two, then three… I don’t know if I’m really selling it here, but it’s so much fun. And a lot harder than it looks (trust me on that one)!
(Note: some of these products are not pictured as they have sadly been packed… but the show must go on!)
How about you? What have you been loving recently? Let me know!