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Singing (the) Blue | Big Bang Daebak!

I wasn't a BigBang fan. Until this came along.

Blue - title track of BigBang's 5th mini album

After I posted this yesterday, I got so curious about BigBang's comeback album that  I couldn't help but to Google it. Really, when you see something as quirky as this, you're bound to get curious.

Nebulizer masks FTW!
The next thing I knew, I was on BigBang's official YouTube channel, watching the Blue MV over and over until Yue began complaining about it. "Mommy, ang lakas naman ng tugtog mo! Hindi ko marinig si Pink Panther!" (Mommy, your music is too loud! I can't hear Pink Panther!) LOL.

I usually fall in love with the song first, before the artist itself. After being smitten by Blue, I decided to preorder a copy of Alive for myself. Just when I thought the only album I will be purchasing this year would be Lee Jun Ki's Deucer (single to be released in March, album in April), I found myself enamored by Blue - like I'm in a trance or something. Play the video above and perhaps you'll understand what I'm talking about.

And with that, I'm now making it official. The Rebel Sweetheart is now a VIP. :)

*VIP is BigBang's official fan club.

Pastime and Fun Times!

Hamming it up for the camera! :)

Sharing with Wordless Wednesdays, InstaFriday, Mommy and Me, Happiness Is, The Simple Things.


UKiss, Miss A, Big Bang | Get 'Em While They're Hot!

The KPop industry is once again filled with excitement as three of the hottest groups release their latest albums!

For KissMe's like me (surprise, I'm a UKiss fangirl!), A Shared Dream is a priority on this month's shopping list. It's UKiss' first Japanese album, and it's been making waves as soon as the MV of their single 'Forbidden Love' came out on the internet. This is a CD+DVD by the way - meaning, there's a video you can spazz on! Haha!

Miss A's fans are in for a treat as well, with the release of Touch.

And the most-awaited of them all is (drum roll, please) Big Bang's fifth mini-album! Aptly titled 'Alive', this album has been eagerly anticipated by VIPs (Big Bang's fanclub) and even non-VIPs. After all the controversies and scandals that have surrounded them for the past year, the boys return to their rightful spot in the limelight and on the KPop charts.

Big Bang Mini Album Vol. 5 - Alive

Did I get you all hyped up? Click on the white icons just below the photos and start buying these albums now! :)

Avon Ideal Luminous Concealer | The Battle Against Dark Undereyes.

It's a known fact that I have the most horrendous eyebags in the history of mankind blogging. I've ranted and prattled about it time and again, as if I were a broken record on repeat. My ongoing battle with dark undereyes has compelled to try all sorts of eye creams, eye masks, and concealers. The latest of which is Avon's Ideal Luminous Concealer Stick.

Avon Ideal Luminous Concealer Stick in Almond.
Like the other products from the Ideal Luminous line, this concealer boasts of the Invisiblend Technology - an Avon innovation four years in the making. With this technology, skin-matching pigments are used 'to create a breathable network of undetectable coverage'. Or in layman's terms, lightweight makeup, flawless look, full coverage.

Sounds promising right? I've been using the Ideal Luminous Dual Powder Foundation for quite awhile now, and I like how it works well on my face. I like it a lot that I've ditched all other foundations and stuck to just this instead. Which is why I have high expectations with this concealer stick. After all, they're from the same Ideal Luminous product line.

Ideal Luminous vs Ideal Shade.
I put it up to a challenge and place it head to head against Avon's Ideal Shade concealer stick. I've been quite loyal to this particular concealer, to be honest. Despite trying other brands, I keep coming back to this Avon product.

Ideal Luminous on the left vs Ideal Shade on the right.
Both concealers are in Almond. But as you can see, the Ideal Luminous has a distinctly lighter shade.

Ideal Luminous on the left vs Ideal Shade on the right.
Or should I say it has a whiter shade?

Ideal Luminous on the left vs Ideal Shade on the right.
It looks even paler when blended across the skin.

Bare face, bothersome eyebags!
But the real test is on the undereyes. That's my 'fresh-from-the-shower' look - bare face and all.

Ideal Shade on the left vs Ideal Luminous on the right.
Now with a generous swatch of both concealers. On the left (the one just above my mole) is the Ideal Shade, while on the right is the Ideal Luminous. You can see that the latter is definitely lighter.

Ideal Shade on the left vs Ideal Luminous on the right.
The right side (as in your right) of my face looks like a mess, I know. For some reason, the Ideal Luminous was a bit difficult to blend. Both concealers are creamy, but the Ideal Luminous tended to settle more on the creases beneath my eyes. I guess I applied a little too much of it, lol.

Ideal Shade on the left vs Ideal Luminous on the right.
You can correct this by setting the concealer with powder. I used the Ideal Luminous Dual Powder Foundation, which did a bit of help for the underye mess. I'll remember to use the Ideal Luminous concealer sparingly next time. But then again, I may just settle for my good ol' Ideal Shade who keeps on calling me back whenever I go astray, lol.

Although this concealer didn't elicit a 'wow' from me, I'd give it points for its affordability. Since I got this as an FD Privilege Buy (the perks of being an Avon Lady), I paid only Php 179 for it. This product will be available to the public beginning March 1, at a special introductory price of Php 199. That's Php 81 cheaper than the regular price of Php 280.

And with that, the epic battle against eyebags and dark undereyes continue. The saga goes on...

Sharing with In the PictureWednesday Whites, and This or That Thursday.


Estes Park Central Vacation Giveaway | JOIN NOW!!

How does a 'two-night stay at a vacation condo surrounded by scenic attractions' sound to you? Wonderful, right? Now what if I tell you that you can make this dream vacation yours... for FREE! 
Yes, I repeat - for FREE!

Win a two night stay in Estes Park Central

Enjoy a 2 night family vacation in Estes Park, Colorado any time between April 8th – 22nd for a family of up to 6 people (a value over $550) in time for Spring Break!!!

This event was put together by Two Little Cavaliers. The prize is being provided by our wonderful sponsor, Estes Park Central. This event is open Worldwide. However you must provide your own transportation.

  Estes Park View 

Experience luxurious accommodations, breathtaking views, cozy fireplaces and the ultimate Premier Vacation Rental. The Home to the Estes Park Premier Vacation Rentals Source was established in 2007. Estes Park Central holds the highest standards in private luxury vacation rental properties and guest services. With our Estes Park Vacation Rentals service and cabin rentals, we offer personalized lavish vacation rental accommodations to meet your individual needs. All our Private Vacation Rental Properties feature top of the line appointments, fully equipped kitchens, TV and DVD, fireplaces, cozy living areas, free wireless Internet, twin/queen/king beds with luxurious bedding and views of the Rocky Mountains. You will truly have an experience to remember with any of our prime Estes Park Vacation Rentals.    

Estes Park Central Condo

About the Condo

This is a newly constructed, luxury, two bed/two bath condo with gorgeous mountain views overlooking Marys Lake and only 3 miles from the entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park. Our Estes Park vacation condo rental is fully-equipped with a Jacuzzi bathtub, King-size and Queen-size bed, Queen-size sofa bed in the living room, gas fireplace, washer and dryer, TV with Cable, DVD and a gourmet kitchen with granite counter tops. A private hot tub on the deck overlooking the mountains enhances your relaxation. The historic Marys Lake Lodge is located on this unique property. It has been totally restored to its original grandeur.Marys Lake Lodge offers 2 separate dining experiences for your pleasure. Grandmaison’s Chalet Room offers world-class international cuisine with a European flair in an elegant ambiance. The Tavern serves delicious meals in a casual atmosphere with live music every night all summer. The rest of the year the live music continues Wednesday through Sunday evening. The Escape Spa and Salon offers a complete salon experience to rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit.   *While this particular condo is not pet friendly they do offer other condos and vacation homes under their management that that are pet friendly.

Hiking year-round, viewing the incredible sights of Rocky Mountain National Park, bicycling around Lake Estes, the Town of Estes and looping past Mary's Lake Lodge, wildlife-viewing, fabulous Shopping,cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, sledding and downhill skiing at Eldora Mountain Resort, a 45 minute drive. The town offers fishing, boating, and indoor/outdoor rock climbing, and horse-back riding.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Today's Look | Chocolate Smoky.

Lately, I find myself deviating from my usual makeup style. Instead of the pinks and reds, I gravitate towards the nudes and browns these days. I guess when you're feeling somber, you're not in the mood to wear bold and bright colors on your face either.

Of course, I still want to look as chic as possible whenever I leave the house. Hence, this browny smoky eye look - or 'chocolate smoky' as I like to call it.

Earthen colors. 
To create this look, I used three different eyeshadow brands. I currently do not own a brown eyeshadow palette specifically intended for smoky eyes, so I had to mix, match, and make do with the browns that I have in store.

L-R: L'Oreal Wear Infinite Eyeshadow, Almay Intense iColor,  Avon Simply Pretty .

Neutrogena Lip Color.

On my middle lid all the way across the outer lid, I applied the Dark Hazel shade from the Almay palette. To highlight the outer and above crease of my eyes,  I used the Rust shade from Avon's Simply Pretty. I finished it off with a light sweep of Sable (the L'Oreal one) on my inner lid, blending it towards the colors on the creases of my eyes.

Ugh, dark undereyes!

Pardon the dark undereyes. I've warned you that they look ghastlier than ever. If you can recommend a kick-ass eye cream to end my undereye woes, I'd appreciate it a lot.

All that brown!
Meanwhile, here's the rundown of the products used:

Etude House Precious Minerals All Day Strong BB Cream #2
Avon Ideal Luminous Dual Powder Foundation in Shell
Avon Ideal Shade Concealer Stick in Almond
Ever Bilena Advance Perfect Eye Concealer in Light
L'Oreal Wear Infinite Eyeshadow in Sable
Almay Intense iColor Trio for Hazels (Dark Hazel)
Avon Simply Pretty Eyeshadow Duo ( Rust)
Ever Bilena Eyebrow Liner in Brown
Avon Extralasting Liquid Eyeliner in Black
Kohl Royal Selections Eyeliner in Charcoal Gray
Avon Super Curlacious Waterproof Mascara in Black
Avon Smooth Minerals Blush in Blushed
Neutrogena Lip Color in Sunlit Crystal

Yes, that's another BB cream you're seeing. Performance-wise and price-wise, Etude House is actually my preferred BB cream brand. But I'll save the product review for later; I have a backlog of (makeup) posts that need to go live on this blog, ASAP.


Not from Joseon, Not a Joseon Man.

"Is your husband Korean?" 
"Is your son half-Korean?"
"Have you been to Korea before?"

These questions I've been asked one too many times before. My ears have actually gotten used to it. I usually get asked by new acquaintances, distant relatives whom I've reconnected with through Facebook, or even strangers that we meet at the mall, the fastfood chain, or at the doctor's clinic.

Perhaps its his alabaster skin, doe eyes, Hallyu hairstyle, or his ability to speak a bit of Hangul that makes people think Yue is Korean, or has a Korean dad. I find it funny, at times flattering, whenever people refuse to believe that my husband is a Filipino, or that Yue is a full-blood Pinoy. I get the most interesting reactions from people each time I tell them they have it wrong.

My most interesting encounter, by far, happened just recently while at the supermarket. Out of habit, Yue and I would always swing by the imported goods section and check out the Korean food items on the shelves. (I was hoping I'd come across some instant jjajangmyun or instant bibimbap.) As the little man exclaimed at the sight of a Pororo milk drink, a very Korean-looking ahjumma (elder woman) came from behind and began speaking to me. In Hangul.

Happy penguin Pororo!
"Annyong haseyo!" she greeted. "Odiso oshiosoyo?" (Hello! Where are you from?) In my mind I was like, 'Oh freak, she thinks I'm Korean?! Because of Pororo???!!!' 

Sure, I understood what she said, and can carry out a decent conversation in Hangul. But of course, my knowledge of the Korean language is limited to the basics - most of which I've learned by watching Kdramas and the Arirang channel.

"Annyong haseyo! Chonun... pilipin... esseo wasseyo," (Hello! I'm from the Philippines.) I greeted back with a smile. At the back of my mind I was summoning the image of Lee Jun Ki in his Let's Learn Korean instructional video.

"De?" she asked. (Huh?) I was worried that I might have said the wrong word, or my pronunciation sounds funny.

"Uh... Yogi... Chonun... Pilipin-saram," (Uh... here... I'm a Filipino.) 'Jeez, my banmal is a mess!' I thought.

The ahjumma gave me a bright smile. "Oh! Kure, kure! Arasso, arasso!" (Oh, right! I understand.)

"Mianheyo, Hanguk-mal jogeum..." I said sheepishly. (Sorry, I speak little Korean.)

"Kokchongma, Hanguk-mal choa!" (Don't worry, it's good.) She glanced at Yue and said, "Adeun minami!" (Your son is handsome.)

"Omo, kansahmnida!" (Oh, thank you!) I bowed my head a little and was thinking if I should do it ninety-degrees ala Super Junior.

And then an ahjussi (elder man), standing at the end of the aisle, shouted "Yobo!" (wife). He was waving his arm, signalling for his wife to come over. I was relieved. I might run out of Hangul if she presses on for a full-blown conversation, haha.

"Kabwa! Kumapta!" (I'm going. Thank you!) And with that smile that never left her face, she sauntered off towards the ahjussi.

I was a bit dazed from what just happened. "Anak, anyare?" (Son, what happened?) I asked Yue. The little man, who was so engrossed with Pororo the entire time, answered, "Sabi nung ahjumma annyeong daw." And then he began singing "Annyeong ne sarang, annyeong ne sarang" - the theme song of Smile You.

Pororo and my little kkonminam.
I chuckled. "Tara na nga, at baka mamaya eh Hapon naman ang kumausap sa kin dito!" (Let's go now, or a Japanese might come next!)

Oh this association with all things Korean! Miccyeoseo miccyeoseo! (Crazy crazy!)

Note: Joseon is what Korea used to be called in the ancient times. This refers to South and North as a whole.

Sharing with 366, InstaFriday, Mommy Moments.


Love Your Teeth, and Your Cosmetic Dentist!

As a child, I grew up with a gripping fear of dentists. I used to associate the dentist chair with excruciating pain, like most kids do. But because I also had an innate blood phobia, my aversion for dentists was more intense compared to my peers. Back then, I would avoid dental procedures of any kind - including something as simple as a routine annual check-up.

By the time I graduated from college, my teeth were in a pretty bad shape. I had a crooked incisor, an unflattering overbite, and gums that bleed each time I brush my teeth. In short, my pearly whites were in dire need of medical attention. As soon as I got my first paycheck from my first job, I sought the help of a cosmetic dentist NYC.

For the next five years, I went through a series of dental procedures. From metal-wired braces, bite splints, retainers, dental bridges, aligners - I've worn them all. Dealing with all these dental devices had not been easy;  there were instances when eating, chewing, and even merely opening my mouth proved to be bothersome and painful.

Even more agonizing were the two surgical procedures that I had to go through. The first one was for my unerupted incisor, where my dentist had to remove my milk tooth and literally scrape my gums open so that the incisor could erupt properly. And as if that was not tormentous enough, I had gingivectomy, too. It's the procedure of removing and reshaping diseased gum tissue to get rid of pockets between the gums and teeth. If not for these procedures, my teeth wouldn't be able to align properly, and my gums would be a host for disease-causing bacteria. I had to endure a lot of pain, but I'm grateful towards my cosmetic dentist for a job well done.

Oh my, what big teeth you have!

I wouldn't want my son to experience all these in future, which is why I give extra attention to his teeth. At this point, he's already had two dental examinations. I also take him along whenever I go to the dentist for my routine monthly check-up. It's a good thing he's showing no signs of fear or aversion towards our dentist. At least with his fearlessness, we could avoid possible dental problems and even more medical expenses in the future.

Disclaimer: This entry is part of a Bucks2Blog campaign. Although compensated for writing this post, the thoughts, views, and opinions stated here are entirely my own.

Sharing with 366 and Blue Monday.

Project Lee Jun Ki | Episode 1.

Forget dessert. Here's something even more worthy of my now-elusive smile.

All the way from HK!
Today, I finally had the chance to get this registered parcel. Yue and I made a quick trip to the local post office before going to the supermarket. I had to personally claim this - complete with ID verification - because it's registered mail. I even had to pay an extra Php 40 because of this Customs Declaration thinggy.

Hmmm... movie disc. Take a guess at who is inside. :)
The parcel's claim stub actually came last Tuesday, but as you may have known, I had to attend to pressing (and depressing) matters earlier this week. After being down in the dumps for the past couple of days, this was a surefire way of putting the smile back into my face.

Ehem! Photo not too clear for you?
Episode 1... here we go! :)
That's Lee Jun Ki Episode 1- otherwise known as Lee Jun Ki's 1st Concert / Fanmeeting in Seoul. This Korea version DVD, released in 2006, is a rare find these days. I was lucky enough to find this on eBay a few weeks back; the moment I laid eyes on it, I knew I had to have this in my collection.

DVD, photobook, stickers.
This is my first Lee Jun Ki collectible, by the way.

Yue, the sticker addict, had cruel intentions for my kkonminam. LOL.
And it just so happens that this is also my first Paypal and first international eBay transaction.

Although a bit worried at first, (I was a Paypal/eBay international newbie, after all) the seller had been very accommodating and was quick to respond to my queries. I even got a discount for the shipping fee. :)

Awww... there's a crack on the cover. :(
I guess the only thing I can complain about is that crack on the cover, which could have been incurred while in transit. One layer of bubble wrap obviously wasn't enough to protect my Joongi. :(

Not a dibidi copy. Haha!
Thankfully, the DVD itself was safe and sound. And it's compatible with my player.

DVD + photobook.
I found happiness in those ninety minutes of nothing but Lee Jun Ki. And seeing these on top of my drawer makes me purse my lips to form a giddy smile.

My son, who has been complaining to his Dad that 'Mommy cries a lot', was delighted to see me smiling again. But I guess he was even more delighted with the stickers, lol. I hid them away as soon as I was done taking these photos. Otherwise, I might find Jun Ki plastered all over the place!


Join | Estes Park Central Vacation Giveaway!

How does a 'two-night stay at a vacation condo surrounded by scenic attractions' sound to you? Wonderful, right? Now what if I tell you that you can make this dream vacation yours... for FREE! Yes, I repeat - for FREE!

Majestic view of the mountains.

Luxury condo - jacuzzi bathtub, King-size beds, gourmet kitchen... the works!

Estes Park Central, one of the premier names in the property management industry, is giving away a free two-night accommodation at a luxury condo in Estes Park, Colorado. Valued at around $550, this vacation is good for a family of six, and can be redeemed starting April 8 until April 22. Sounds great for Spring Break, right?

For a chance to win this vacation for you and your family, all you have to do is join this giveaway! Bloggers are also welcome to participate in this event. By simply blogging and spreading the word about the Estes Park Central giveaway, bloggers will be given a spot for their Facebook page in the Rafflecopter form - at no extra cost, too!

Win a 2 Night Stay in Estes Park Central

This event will go live on February 27, and will run until March 6. Be sure to visit my blog on Monday so you can cast your entries via Rafflecopter. You wouldn't wanna miss this opportunity to sit back, relax, and enjoy the view of the Rocky Mountains together with your loved ones! :)

For further details and signup forms, visit Two Little Cavaliers, the host blog of this giveaway event.