Monday, December 27, 2010

As promised....

Here are some photos that I've taken with my new lens Nikkor 50mm 1/1.8. It's one of Nikon's cheapest lenses (~$120). So far so good, especially for its price tag..... But seeing my friend's photo taken with the 50mm 1/1.4 lens (which is crystal clear, the lens itself is about ~$250). I guess you do get what you've paid for ....

I have summarized some good's and bad's if you are interested in reading....


* Narrow depth of field, which gives you that blurry background effect.

* Great for portraiture and stilllife because it will eliminate any busy background.

* Fairly good for low light settings due to the wide aperture.

* Fairly sharp just with the autofocus function. Because I'm nearsighted and because the depth of field is so narrow, I'd rather just rely on autofocus.

* Beautiful bokeh effect. I love to play with different lighting and subtle effects, so definitely a plus.

The BAD:

* Not good for moving objects, such as small children, animals (especially the ones that are scared of camera or the ones you can't approach), etc

* Narrow depth of field..... It's also bad because if you are not focused spot on your object of interest, you'll get a bad blurry picture.

* Wide aperture. Because of the wide aperture, pictures come out overexposed or too bland if you shoot in daylight. Lack of contrast can be easily adjusted with any editting tool. However, overexposure in digital photography simply means loss of data. Even the best photo editting program won't be able to restore the data.

* When you shoot at very low light, pictures won't be very sharp if it's handheld. A tripod or a stable surface will be your best bet.

* Due the narrow depth of field, this lens is not very good for family portraiture or if multiple people are present because someone's face can be out of focus.

* Not good for shooting in a confined space. Since the lens is 50mm and objects will appear closer than seen with naked eyes, you do need to back up physically. If it's a small or crowded room, you might not be able to get the picture you want.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


My family has donated numerous times to the Salvation Army over the years. I would say probably at least 10 bags (size of huge trash bags) of clothes, bags, belts, etc. I knew they would make good use out of the stuff that we probably would never, but I never knew that they sell the items. Never heard of thrift store until this year. Yes, I know, I'm little narrow visioned.

Recently I've been watching a lot of thrift store hauls on youtube, and I'm truly inspired. So far, I've been to the thrift store three times. I don't know if you guys recall last Halloween, I scored a chiffon material, white laced dress. It was a little teared, but it was absolutely perfect for me because I dressed up as corpse bride. =D

Earlier last month, I got really intrigued by all the videos and I had asked my mom to go with me to a local Salvation Army store. Initially, she was like "But it's stuff other people have worn and don't want anymore...." So I promised her that it could be just a one time interesting adventure. If we can't find anything good, we'll just get out of there as quickly as we can.

But I ended up finding myself one Bebe lavender blazer and Express grey suit/blazer. The Bebe blazer is totally in for that "boyfriend" trend. It's 100% silk, and the color, oh so fine!!! The Express suit fits me sooooo much better than the BCBG suit that I bought for my vet school interviews, which was about $100 even after 40% off. But those blazers were only $7.99 each.

So I think I'm a little addicted now. Not only about finding cheap thrills, but I love how the money goes toward a good cause. Here are some reasons I think everyone should try thrifting at least once....

1. It's fun
I think the essence of shopping is not just to "buy stuff", but it's about finding something that's cute, comfortable, fashionable, sexy, etc... It's only fun because of the process of looking through random stuff and finally coming across an item that screams you. It's like finding treasures, and it feels very rewarding.

2. It's inexpensive
Who can resist cheap thrills??? Do not deny it!

3. It's unique
The reason why I'm a little deterred from shopping at Forever21 now is because it's so ubiquitous. Every girl in the country or in the world have access to the same garment that you like. And I HATE bumping into people who are wearing the same cloths as me or who tell me "Oh, I have that shirt too!" What you find in the thrift store is most likely no longer available in store or vintage. It's one of a kind.

4. It inspires your creativity.
Of course, not everything comes in perfect condition. A button may be missing or you like the pattern of the skirt, but it's not the current trend. You get to use your imagination to convert it to a trendy and wearable garment. It really makes it even more special.

5. It's environmentally friendly.
To me, the most comforting thought is that by shopping at a thrift store, I'm extending the shelf life of the cloths, bags, shoes, or whatever much much longer. Because a simple gesture of buying a used item, I'm fully utilizing something that took human labor, natural resources, and energy to manufacture. It may not make that much of a difference. But by refraining from buying a brand new item, I may have saved another leaf on a tree or a drop of water in the river. It does add up.

6. It's a good cause.
7. There's no sales tax.
8. There are some ridiculous sales sometimes. (50% off sale, student sale, senior sale, buy 5 and get all at $2, 1lb of clothing for $2, etc)
9. It's good to support (non-corporate) local stores.
10. It's good to get out more, and by "get out", I mean non-mall places.

OK, there are more reasons that I just can't think of right now.

Here are some girls on youtube who always find really amazing deals..... I love watching their videos!!!

Monday, August 30, 2010

A little update and some pictures from this summer...

I was supposed to go to a veterinary volunteer trip in New Mexico. However, a lot of things have happened recently. Despite all the fundraising effort I put in and all the fun learning experience I was expecting, I decided that it was best to stay home for another week.

One of the things that happened recently was that Diamond got lower urinary tract infection last week. It's a fairly common illness that cats get, but it can be quite serious. I knew she was a little stressed from moving home with me. She showed some signs initially, but has gotten better few weeks ago. Last week, she kept on running around, peeing frequently and peeing and pooping outside of her litter box. She was meowing at me, and I knew something must have gone wrong because she never meows. When I went to her litter box to check, I saw red stains on the carpet and on the kitchen tiles. She was urinating blood!

I'm usually extremely calm when it comes to taking care of other people's animals, but I got so nervous when I saw bloody urine on the floor. So I took her to the humane society I worked at before immediately. Her blood and urine analysis results are still pending, but we decided to treat her empirically with antibiotics since she's had history of UTI before and all the signs fit UTI.

She has gotten a lot better on the first day-- bloody in the urine has become more and more diluted. But she is still regaining her appetite and her confidence in using the litter box again. Sigh.... I'm such a bad mom for ignoring her signs. She still purred and rubbed her head against me even though she must have been in a lot of pain.

Anyways..... On a brighter note, here are some pictures from this summer..... I haven't touched my D80 in a really long time, and I almost forgot how to use it.

I went to Santa Monica with my friends few weeks ago. This bikini set was the one I talked about in my recent haul video. The set was only $15 (compare to ~ $140 originally). This was the first time I've ever worn bikini in the public, so I was a bit shy about taking off the shorts off. LOL

I was told to do a sexy pose..... and this was the awkward pose that I came up with..... Definitely not a model material as you can tell...

Oddly enough, I was just demonstrating to my friends how to do a sexy pose here. Just when I was about to get up, she took the shot. For some reason, this weird pose that lasted 1 milisecond reminded me of the sculpture in front of the Getty Center.

The funny thing is that I did take my family to visit the Getty Center last week, and here is the sculture I'm referring to. Now to look at it, my pose was far less skillful than that of the sculpture. How do you just balance on your hip and keep the legs so low and parallel to the ground....?

Here are some other random photos....

Monday, August 23, 2010


I was browsing online, and I came across some pretty amazing before and after pictures. It's amazing how makeup, circle lenses, false lashes, and some photoshop editting can transform a girl! Here are some examples.....

And last one.... XD

Pretty impressive, huh?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

A Caricature of Me =)

Ana or aka evenangelsfalter drew a caricature of me while she was watching my recent haul video. She's such a doll!!! So gorgeous and talented.

This is like my very first caricature.... It was very interesting seeing myself through other people's perspective. Hmm.... Do I appear very masculine? Maybe I should smile more? haha..... I know when I don't smile, I can really ward off a lot of people. That's why I was never popular among boys..... LOL.... oh welll

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I'm babysitting my cousin today and tomorrow..... He's 3 and half. So he's like constantly jumping up and down, running around, and laughing loudly. I just can't match up his energy level.... Usually, I would blame my aunt for buying him fast food or allowing him to watch TV. I know how easily kids get addicted to those things. But I was so tired after the first 2 hours, I was just watching Spongebob with him the whole time (since he only sits down when he's watching spongebob, and also because spongebob is one of my favorite cartoon too... XD)

I gotta admit, kids are a lot of work..... I just can't imagine how I have to work a full time job, and still have to take care of my family after work..... My cousin is finally asleep right now, but I have a really bad pounding headache right now. It pounds everytime I tries to get out of my bed. So I probably should sleep early today and get ready for one more day with a 3 yr-old.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

DOTD: Horrible Nightmare

Ok, I hate waking up at 5 in the morning from a horrible nightmare. Then I would start imagining what would happen if the dream continued...... and then I could never fall asleep after that.

So last night, I dreamt that my parents and I were sitting in the living room and watching TV. It was at night time, and it was pretty quiet. All of a sudden, there was some kind of stir outside. Then, we could hear people on the nearby streets screaming and wailing. Then we heard a car driving away, with really loud shrill from acceleration.

The way people were crying sounded so helpless and miserable, that I got chills down my back. Our family was shocked. We just sat there and looked at each other. I think we later switched channels, and found out there's a brutal serial killer that's having a murder rampage throughout the town. Obviously, the way he kills people is extremely ruthless. Police still haven't caught that guy yet.

For some reason and without my consent, my parents decided it's not safe to stay at home and they want to drive to the nearest motel. On our way, we saw police blocking off major intersections because of the murdering scene. The streets were completely dark and there was no one on the street. When we finally got to the motel, my cousin and her friends went there also. She told me supposedly the murderer would make a cut on the victim and drink the blood while the victim is still alive (Umm.... I wonder what we call beings like that.)

People kept on driving into the motel, but everyone still looked really terrified because none of us know how the murderer looks like or where he might be.

Then I woke up. Maybe it really doesn't sound that scary, but the sound of people screaming was so vivid and it kept on ringing in my ears. I kept on thinking what if the murderer comes into the motel, kill the front desk clerk, and get the master key to every room? What if the murderer is among us?

Needless to say, it was my wild imagination that kept me up and feeling really disturbed.

Anyways..... In Inception, Cobb told Rober Fischer that it's hard to recall dreams after you wake up, it takes years of practice. I thought maybe I should continue to write down my dreams (since I have already mastered the skills! XD). I stopped writing for a while because I've been so exhausted during school year that I just don't have any extra memory space for those things. But since it's summer, I'll try to write down as many dreams as I remember.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Fashion is......

I don't know about you guys, but I used to try to follow every fashion trend. Sometimes, even when I know the cloths don't flatter my body, I still wear them. After a while, I realized it's just not realistic to be blindly chasing after every fashion trend. I don't want to feel uncomfortable in cloths when I know I'm not at my best.

I certainly don't have perfect modelesque figure, and I know even with very stringent diet or exercise, genes still override. I don't want to be too critical of myself. I want to be able to enjoy food and enjoy life. I want to be comfortable, happy, and confident. So let it be. So I learnt to embrace my body and be picky about which trends to follow. Then for a while, almost all the clothing pieces I bought were either grey or black. They were too ordinary, unoriginal and ageless. Now that a lot of clothing stores are ubiquitous (ie Forever 21), I'd rather look ordinary than bumping into another dozen of girls who wear the exact same outfits. My mom always tells me how my wardrobe is so boring. I don't really care, because I'm comfortable in my own skin, so it doesn't really matter what I wear.

Anyways..... I really love seeing pictures of street fashion, especially of Japanese and Koreans. I love their individualistic sense of fashion. It's so refreshing, so unique, and even so bizzarre!!! Sometimes, I wonder how these people even came up with the idea. Regardless whether it's wonderful or weird, it's so brilliant the way they put the outfit together. So I guess fashion is what makes you YOU. As long as you are comfortable in it, nobody can have a say about your fashion sense.

All pictures are from

Another Japanese street fashion website that I've been visiting since few years ago is

So what do you guys think? Following the mass trends? Creating your own unique style?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Things I've been lemming....

1. L'oreal Lash Boosting Serum - I don't know why I never really paid attention to this product until few days ago. Reviews on Makeupalley seems kinda split, it either worked pretty well or it caused itchy eyes. Most lash growth serum are soooo expensive, so I think it's worth a shot to try this one. Just by having really full and long lashes can do so much to one's eyes.

2. Maybelline Stilleto Mascara - Heard some good things about this mascara... still haven't had a chance to try it out. The only reason that I haven't bought this mascara is because I have a bunch of backups of other mascaras and I'm waiting for a BOGO sale. =)

3. Fedora - I've been wanting a fedora for a long time. I know it was in fashion a while ago, and I wished I had looked for one when there were more options. Right now, there aren't that many pretty ones..... And maybe my head is too big? a lot of the ones won't even fit my head. XD I just love how fedora helps to make my messy and thick hair into an intended laid back casual look. haha....

4. Petticoat MSF- The NYC Color Chroma Face Glow in Moonstone looks so similar to Petticoat MSF. It's a pretty good dupe. The shimmer is also very fine and subtle. There are also burgundy and gold veinings on top of the light pink powder. It's great for highlighting and blush, and it gives you a pretty nice pink sheen on the cheeks. But unfortunately, my skin is allergic to this knock off version. I would get red bumps on my cheeks everytime I use NYC Moonstone. Since I have a Macy's gift card, I really want to get this pretty hyped up Petticoat MSF.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tag: 8 Questions

Lisa, thank you for tagging me!!!! Awww.... I feel so touched when you mentioned my name in your post. Even though I sounded so amateur and silly back then, I'm more than flattered to have intrigued you in some way! Obviously, you are so much more diligent and better at updating on your blog than I.... Kudos to you! Anyways, I really enjoy doing tags, and I'm going to copy your format, hehe....

What's your favorite beauty item?

Currently, I'm obsessed with Prestige Skin Loving Minerals bronzer. I'm no expert when it comes to applying bronzers. A lot of bronzers tend to make my face look "dirty" or orangy. I got the Prestige bronzer in Rich Bronze last summer (it was on sale for about $3.50!!!!). I think I found my HG bronzer. The powder is very finely milled, and it gives you the most divine bronzy sheen on your cheeks. I've gotten a lot of compliments when I wear this bronzer. And of course, the domed shape and the veinings on the surface always draw me into reaching for it (and staring at it) every single day.

How did you become interested into beauty?
I've always had the urge to "paint" on my face..... Of course, it was more like randomly drawing than makeup. I became really obsessed with makeup the summer I graduated from college. Back then, I could barely apply mascara without poking my eyes out. As for eyeliner? I would apply a thick and uneven line first, then I would use makeup remover to wipe off the excess. VOILA, that's my version of tight lining!

Ok.... enough babbling. During college, I took jazz/hip-hop lessons and we had to perform on stage. That's when I realized I didn't know anything about makeup. At the time, I had no idea about the makeup community. So I searched for pictures of celebrity wearing smoky eye makeup and tried to imitate. I felt really frustrated because I could never replicate the look the way I wanted. And then there were formal dinners, my graduation ceremony, and my first time going to the club... I just wish I knew what to do with my face for different occasions. It was not until after I graduated from college, I realized that there were so many makeup blogs, forums and tutorial videos on youtube. Then I got really into it and start hoarding makeup products..... LOL

Examples of my "painting" and my "smoky look" (back then)

What do you like to see the most into a blog?
I'm definitely more of a visual person. I love to see pictures... of anything. FOTD, OOTD, makeup products, swatches... even just random places or food. And I love to read about bloggers' life stories and get to know them more personally.

What's your favorite hobby (besides blogging)?
I love photography. I really enjoy capturing beauty in ordinary things with my lenses. It's such a unique feeling to be able to see things that other people don't. I wish I'll be able to have my own photo exhibit one day... even if that means I have to pass out free tickets and force friends and family to show up.... LOL

"Not a Happy Camper"
Nope, I didn't draw on the jelly bean. It came out like that from the jar!

What's your favorite book?
Confession time..... My name is Jessie, and I don't like reading books. It's shame that I haven't read that many books. I'm more drawn to books with investigative or sci-fi-ish storyline. I really liked "Da Vinci Code". If I want to be all artsy and romanticist, I enjoyed reading Awakening. It's a sad but beautiful love story, and there were so many lines that I really liked.

Do you study/work?
Yes, I'm still studying.... after almost 20 years of education..... There's a Chinese saying "活到老,学到老." which translates to keep on learning as long as you are alive. So I guess I'll always be learning regardless.

Do you have a dream?
I wanted to be a veterinarian since I was in third grade in elementary school. My dream now is to become a successful vet-- to be good at what I do and to enjoy what I do. I also want to buy my own house and have lots of pets. =D

Alright.... so I'm not sure who has already done this tag. If you happen to pass by and saw this post, you are tagged! =D