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Friday, July 26, 2013

aka DAN: A Korean Adoptee Documentary Project [KickStarter] - Please Help Support My Friend DANakaDAN

So you may have seen this posted on my Facebook/Twitter today but I wanted to also do a quick blog post so I could speak a little more intimately with you all as well as express my excitement and support for my friend and fellow Korean Adoptee, Dan Matthews (DANakaDAN of afterschoolspecial). 

So a few weeks ago while in Seoul, South Korea for the first time since I was born, I received an email from my friend Dan. He had gotten some pretty HUGE news and wanted to share it with me. In the email he attached a letter as well as some photographs, what was inside gave me an entirely new perspective on being an adoptee. 

He had done a birth search and they had actually found his biological family! His parents were married and still are. He has a biological sister and TWIN BROTHER. 

....I'll just give you a moment to let that sink in. 

Now I personally don't really talk about my adoption very much, mostly because I feel like a lot of people wouldn't understand and I have found the words and actions of those types of people to be...just plain mean. After all it's not something that I sit and think about all the time, I've always been very "it is what it is" about it, especially as a child/teenager. 

Of course if anyone (genuinely) asks me I have no problem talking about it. I just never like that to be the main thing people focus on. Growing up in a small country town in Connecticut with little to no Asian people for most of my life really allowed the whole 'adoption' topic to get pushed to the back burner in most conversations. It was so rare to see an Asian person (not working at the Casino) that adopted or not adopted didn't really seem to matter. I think in all my years in school, from Kindergarden to College I was pretty much always 1 of 2 Asian kids in the entire school. (At one point there were 3 - My little brother, myself and another little girl - all of us adopted.)

When I started flying out to Los Angeles in 2009 the fact that I was adopted seemed to come up in EVERY conversation that included Asian people -___- there was a lot of "ohh she's Korean...but she's adopted" - a.k.a. why I don't speak Korean, have any Korean tendencies (other than my temper ^_^), and whatever else people like to categorize Korean people to be like. 

To be fair there are a TON of Asian people out here, and just people in general. So many different cultures and ethnicities so I guess that's an important or interesting topic. It seems to be the first question people generally ask me out here, especially if they are also Asian. It's cool to be around so many other Asian people I suppose but it's also kind isolating for me. Number one, I'm not use to it and number two, everyone seems to put so much emphasis on the fact that I'm adopted. It's like great I'm Korean, I'm now exposed to other Koreans...yet I still don't really fit in. It's something that I'm working on and something I'm sure a lot of adoptees experience. 

WE'RE ALL JUST PEOPLE! Why can't it ever be that! lol. 

Anyway, a couple years ago I met Dan through mutual friends and he is pretty into the whole adoptee thing, hearing other people's stories, connecting, etc. which was different for me because I'm really not. I think most of my life I just wanted to have the same type of family as everyone else. My parents are my parents. I don't want to talk about my biological family because for me that's not a family that I know. (And I know that probably sounds kind of harsh but please understand none of this is meant to be offensive or anything like that. Everyone processes things differently and sometimes you can't control how you feel. It's an ongoing battle for me and I think it probably always will be.) Talking with Dan and seeing adoption through his eyes and spirit have really given me new perspective on the topic. It has become kind of a new chapter emotionally for me, one that I am no longer scared or feel awkward to pursue. 

I definitely want to thank him for that, for his persistence in talking to me about adoption and sharing milestones in his journey, despite me initially shying away from the topic. I can not express what I felt for him when I received his email about finding his birth family. So many emotions I almost can't explain how you could have so many at one time. Happiness, excitement, hope, curiosity, jealousy, and yes, I cried. 

For me his outcome is something that I never thought possible, something that I would be too afraid to move forward with (for many reasons) on my own, he just did it. It happened, and this is just the beginning. 

He's boarding a flight right now to Korea, he's going to perform, meet his birth family and...they're documenting the whole thing. 

Now this is where you and I come in : ) 

In order to make this whole thing possible they have started a KickStarter. 

It would mean so much to me if you would help support if you can. Even if it's just to share the video and get the word out, I would really appreciate it. 
(I know Dan will too ^_^) 

(and yes I will also be backing the project!)

Below I have linked both the video as well as Dan's KickStarter if you want to check it out! (The video can be viewed on the KickStarter site as well so if you just want to go directly there you can.) 

You can also connect with Dan via:

And again to back his KickStarter project (Documentary + Album)

Dan, I wish you safe travels. I can't wait to hear all about it when you get back. 
You will always have my support in everything you wish to pursue! 

To everyone else, Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post. Definitely a little more personal that I normally like to get online but I felt like now was the time haha. It's probably something I wouldn't do a video on but if anyone out there is interested in hearing more about my...adopted-ness. LOL. - my adoption story/life, please let me know. It may be something I would be willing to blog about since I know that I do have some fellow Korean adoptees out there and it may be a helpful support to those looking for it. My thoughts on adoption/my adoption are really on their way to coming full circle I feel. I am in the best place I have ever been with it currently so I think now I actually would be able to, in a helpful/more insightful way.

 Who knows maybe next time I will be posting about an email I get with some big news to share : )

Thanks so much for reading and I will talk to you all very soon!


Thursday, July 25, 2013

[Beauty] Swatches: Wet n' Wild 'Pop Art Craze' Limited Edition Eye Shadow Trios

Just got back from Rite Aid and snagged myself a few of these new Wet n' Wild 'Pop Art Craze' Limited Edition Color Icon Trios - I just couldn't resist! 

These are only 3 of the 6 palettes that launched with this collection but it was all they had left haha. 

Colors: (in order of photos/swatches)

I'm Seeing Triplets! 
Hard Being the It Girl
To Muse and Carouse

(all shades are matte : ) 

Retail: $2.99 

(I only paid $2.09 each because they were on sale!) 

As most of you know I am probably one of the ONLY people (especially on YouTube) that dislikes most of the Wet n' Wild Trio shadows (but their single shadows are AMAZING) - I normally find them to be quite chalky, patchy, overall just cheap looking on, not to mention they break VERY easily, but these colors were just so fun I couldn't resist scooping them up! (plus Rite Aid has an awesome return policy - if you don't like it you just bring it back!) 

I would say out of the 3 that I purchased the one that I would not recommend is the first one pictured/swatched, I'm Seeing Triplets, it had far less color pay off and was just overall underwhelming. I think you could make it work with a base but you know me, I want a product to perform right out of the pan and I don't think this one will. 

The next two seemed much more promising although for me the last one, To Muse and Carouse, will probably not be as flattering. (I have the matte 6 color palette which has a similar peach/orange nude and it looks awful on my skin tone.)
 I would say as of now Hard Being the It Girl looks the most appealing to me. I find the color combination to be quite pretty and the shades swatch as nice as I would expect - not mind blowing but still good for a $2 eyeshadow palette.

At the end of the day I just don't see the hype with the Wet n' Wild Trios, nor do I know why I continue to purchase them -__- lol. Is is the affordability or the thrill of scooping up their latest limited edition combinations? I don't know. 

I don't think the shadows are horrible and you are definitely not getting ripped off at $2-$3 but it's not always about the price. To me it's about the product's performance. I have yet to be impressed with any of the Wet n' Wild Trio palettes. I do think they are great if you just want to try out a crazy color or experiment/have fun but I don't consider these a worthwhile investment/addition to your makeup collection. 

If you want to try something really awesome from the Wet n' WIld line I have listed/linked my personal favorites/recommendations down below. These products are great and a total steal at $1.99 - $4.99

My TOP Wet n' Wild Recommendations: 
(linked from Amazon for convenience but you will find the best prices at your local drugstore!)

Single Eyeshadow in Penny

I hope this post was helpful! As always thank you so much for reading :) 

Talk to you soon,

All photos were taken with my iPhone 4S

Saturday, July 20, 2013

FOUND: Lipstick Dupe for Maybelline Pink Please

As many of you may remember I was TOTALLY obsessed with Maybelline's ColorSensational Lipstick in Pink Please for a while - It was one of my first RAVE review products when I first started my YouTube channel. I've since grown past the color (as I have lost my tan and my tastes have changed in 4 years lol) but I know many people still love this color and are always looking for a suitable replacement. 

I found this color (P35) while in Korea, it seemed like a color I would like but I found it to be too peachy/dark for my current taste. When I got it home much to my surprise it was very similar to my once loved (025) Pink Please
To date it is the closest color I have found and since they are both ColorSensational Lipsticks (the P35 is actually a "lasting" variety though) the formula is quite comparable.

I was unable to find P35 on Amazon but did find it on a couple of Asian websites - I would need to do some more advanced searching I think as it did not turn up on any of the sites I normally browse. P35 should be able to be found in Korea and other Asian countries as well as Australia. I purchased mine from a store called Olive Young in Seoul, South Korea.

Maybelline 025 Pink Please -

For more Details and a Demo 
Watch the Video Here:

Hope this was still somewhat helpful! 

Thanks so much for watching and reading : ) 

See you in a few days! 


Friday, July 12, 2013

[FASHION QUICK PIC] Casual Outfit of the Day - Utility Vest, Cut Offs + MCM Mini Stark Backpack

(photo from hollyannaeree's instagram)

Tank: H&M (this season) 

Just a quick, on the go Outfit of the Day post :)

Today we just ran out to do a few errands. I had an eye appointment and we did some grocery shopping at Costco.

 I have been LIVING in One Teaspoon brand shorts this summer - LOVE them so much! 
I just ordered a bunch more from Karmaloop/MissKL, can't wait to get them! ^_^
Definitely a little pricier for me (at $60 - $100 a pair) but I would say well worth the money. They are comfortable and come in really cool cuts. Best cut offs I've ever owned. (I'll show them a bit better in a favorites video soon!) 

The utility vest is something new for me. Picked this one up from Forever 21 (online) and have been trying it out to see how it works for me, adding some interest to a simple outfit. It's a size small but actually fits rather large I think. Still, not bad for $35 bucks. 


Lastly, this is the blog debut of my new bag! This was my "big souvenir" purchase while I was in Korea and I am IN LOVE! 

The MCM Mini Stark Backpack in Cognac. 

As MCM is a South Korean brand (originally a German brand) it seemed like the perfect thing to splurge on while I was there, PLUS the prices are a lot less there than here in the states. No surprise I was really itching to pick up a piece especially since MCM seems to be kind of difficult to track down here in CA. Even online there is a very limited selection and the Mini Backpack is damn near impossible to find! 

I originally was going to go with the lighter beige color that my friend Alex from HRH Collection has (it looks awesome on her!) but when I saw it in store it didn't suit me as well. The cognac was the first color I tried on and it looked really amazing with the olive dress I was wearing that day. It's different for me, not a color I would normally gravitate towards but I have to say I am really enjoying it and am pleased to see that it matches so many items in my closet (especially with the incorporation of the black in the logo and to two tone studs on the front of the bag. I couldn't ask for a better, more versatile combination!)

Bottom line: I am obsessed. I have been wearing it everyday! Super durable and overall a cute, casual bag that still has a touch of luxury. I am already planning on my next MCM purchase! Looking at a couple of the Medium Stark Backpacks - I'd love to use them as a carry on or just overall to bring along on days that I need to carry a little extra. 
They come in a ton of fun colors every season - I can tell this is going to be a "gotta collect them all" situation. Bank account, I am sorry. lol : P

I plan on doing a full review on the backpack complete with HD pictures etc. for you all so keep an eye out for that! 

That is all for now. Hope you all have been wonderful! 

I miss you, 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Just to add some SPARKLE to your day. [Window Shopping Chanel]

Just for fun.

Saw this at my local Nordstrom Chanel Boutique a few weeks back (maybe a month or so) - Not sure what the story was behind this because it's from Fall last year (2012). I kind of think it was a return but the sales associate would not confirm. 

Satin bag COVERED in some of the most sparkly sequins I've ever seen.


...but not worth the price.


It was leather lined in the flap and through the chain but that was about it. 
Not a horrible price, not even one of Chanel's more expensive bags but for the materials and the amount you'd actually be able to use this bag (unless you are Carly Christman lolll) it was just too high of a price, for me anyway. 

Just thought I would share this rare find with you. 

(I did go back to check on it the next day because...well...I have a problem..and it was gone. Someone scooped that baby right away (despite the scratches on the leather on the inside flap and the mangled Nordstrom sticker on the tag (obviously a return lol idk why the SA wouldn't just tell me straight out. haha.)

Hope you all enjoyed. 

I promise I will be back to blogging very soon! (Just got back from Korea if you didn't know :)