Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Funny Complaint I Got Today & My Latest Ideeli Order

I opened my laptop today to write about my latest ideeli purchase, but I got a comment for an old old post about Ikea.  In the post I wrote that I had bought these panel curtains from Ikea, but I had not yet put them up so I had no picture to show.  Therefore, I searched the internet for a picture of them and came upon one which I used.  I stated it was not my picture in the post.  The funny thing about that is I distinctly remember thinking to myself at the time, "Gosh the wall color of this picture is really ugly, I wish I could find another one."  But I either couldn't find another picture or couldn't be bothered to, so I used it anyway.  Apparently, the owner of this picture somehow found this post, and she is asking me to remove the picture saying it is her copyrighted photo.  It's just really funny because it's not an artsy picture by any stretch of the imagination.  It is a picture, of someone's curtains!  It is hardly something to get bent out of shape over. I don't want to repost her masterpiece here, so you'll have to click the link above to see it.  Maybe she's embarrassed  about the color of her walls? Some people are just so ridiculously uptight. Like, really??? LOL! But with that said, I will remove it later and take one of my own, it will look better anyways.  Just thought I'd share my eye-rolling moment!

Anyway!  So a couple weeks ago I decided to spend my ideeli credit on some dresses.  I ended up buying 2, and received them today.  But I think one is definitely going back.  This Ravon Long Transformer Dress is a keeper though.

I don't know why I'm buying summer dresses in the winter.  But I like the look of long dresses.  This one can be worn in many different ways I guess.  But I need to look up how to wear it because so far I only figured out how to wear it as a halter or one shoulder.  I like this print though, and the fit of the dress is pretty good.  It's definitely long and I would have to wear heels with it.  But I think it will be a great summer outfit to like hang out, BBQ or go shopping, to the beach, something like that.  

But the second dress I got, the Tiziana Cervasio Color Block Sweater Dress, is going back.  The material is way too scratchy.  I don't know why I've been having issues with online orders being scratchy lately.  But there's no way I can wear this dress, so uncomfortable.  The fit is not that cute anyways, and it's ultra short.  Like barely covering the bum short.  So I'll return it and swap for something else later!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Failed Victoria's Secret Orders

Hmm so I kind of swore of Victoria's Secret clothes a while ago because I had not been so impressed with their quality.  But I still receive their emails and the other day I was tempted to go check things out.  Then I kind of went crazy and ordered a bunch of stuff!  Sadly, they have not redeemed themselves and I am returning most of the things I ordered.  Good news though, I see that now they accept return of online items in stores so I can return free of return shipping.

When I placed my order, they had a special where if you buy a sweater you get a ruffled scarf for free.  And if you spend over $100, you get free shipping.  I noticed that my order actually totaled over $200, so I placed 2 separate orders instead and got 2 free scarves!  LOL!  I am so glad I did because I actually LOVE these scarves!  They are so soft and comfy, and super cute.  They are elastic too so it's easy to make them stay in place.  I will totally be wearing them all the time even though you don't really need scarves living in LA - whatever, they are light enough to wear on chilly mornings on my way to work.  There are 4 colors to choose from:  white, pink, red and black.  I got white and pink.

I wonder if I can keep the scarves for free even though I'm returning most of the things I ordered??

Now the only thing I will be keeping, other than the scarves, is this Ruched Cotton Cowneck Sweater.  It's two for $50 so I got two.  I got most of the sweaters for work because I just find sweaters a lot more comfortable than suit jackets to wear.  And I don't really care if they have business dress anymore, I just keep on wearing my sweaters.  Nobody's said anything to me yet lol.

I got this in 2 colors, one is called scarlet red which is this bright, true red.  I have been wanting a red sweater forever and this is perfect for the holiday season as well.  The material is super light weight sweater knitted material.  It's pretty comfortable.  There are ribbons down both sides though, which makes the front and back ruched.  I would probably prefer no ribbon but it doesn't bother me.  I got these in size S and they fit on the loose side.

So the size I got doesn't fit nearly as tight in the waist as it does the model.  But it still has shape.  So that's good as I do not want tight fitting sweaters to wear to work.  If I got a size XS it would probably fit like the photo.

The color color I got is regal blue, and it's back ordered so I will be receiving it a few days later.  But I got another sweater in the same color (see below) which I am returning but I really love the color.  So I'm really excited to get it in this sweater.  I love the large cowl neck.

And here is this the same color in this Sexy Cardi Sweater.  I am returning everything from here down.

It's a great color, and it's very light weight and nice.  And it was on sale for only $19.  I would keep it but the neckline is way too low.  If it was 2 inches higher, or even an inch, I'd consider keeping.  But the fit is loose, short and kind of boxy.  So probably not.

I also got this Ruffle Cardi Sweater in "pink fairy".  It's like a cotton candy pink.  Reminds me a lot of my bridesmaids dresses.  Lol.  And only $19 too.  But it's way too short, so I'm returning it too.  Plus it's a little too little girl like to wear to work anyway.  For some reason it looks way shorter on me than it does on this model here.  It hits me at my natural waist.  Maybe she's super petit.  But I think it looks really cute on her.  Too bad, too bad.

I got this silk & cashmere blend v-neck cardigan in winter white.  It's the same sweater this model is wearing in the pink scarf picture:

This is probably my most favorite one out of all the rejects.  It's a nice lightweight material.  And it's longer than the other 2 cardigans.  But it's also very low cut like the Sexy Cardi up top.  It fits a little looser than that one through the body though.  I would keep it but then I looked at the price of $30 and decided it's not really worth that since I am not too crazy about it.  It looks like a cardigan I can get for $15 at Target.

And then I got 2 angora sweaters which I thought were so cute but they are so itchy/scratchy I can't stand them!  I literally put them on for 2 seconds and took them off.  I feel like I immediate got a rash from the harsh material.  Omg, who would ever wear something that scratchy??  You would have to always wear long sleeves under them, that's just not gonna happen.  So be warned, do not order this material at VS.

This fit of this angora boyfriend cardigan is cute though, and it looks so comfy on the model!  I wish it was super soft because I could just live in it.  I got it in this color called "sugar baby", and it's a very soft and light pink.  Nice color.  Too bad.

And then faux-wrap sweater in angora as well, I got in winter white.  I actually don't even like the fit of this one as the shoulders kind of stick up like you have shoulder pads.  Very 80s looking.  

So that's it.  The moral of the story is, don't be fooled by how cute everything looks on the Victoria's Secret models.  Lol.  

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

It's Thanksgiving today and I am starving right now!  That has to be a first.  It's probably because I am not spending it with my mom for the first time ever - she usually feeds me non-stop!  I actually ate rather healthy today and I like it!  I went to the gym first thing after I woke up, then I had a healthy breakfast with egg whites and extra lean ground turkey.  Now I am just finishing my protein drink and a handful of almonds before heading out to dinner.  I think I'm going to have lots of veggies and some meat tonight.  Maybe then I won't have to work out all weekend to burn off everything I eat today.  That's gotta be another first!

Well, I figured that since today is pretty much the national binge day, that this should be ode to all the yummy food I ate in Europe!

First meal in Prague - the best and biggest potatoe pancake I've ever had in my life!

Potatoe dumplings and some kinda meat

mushroom soup in a bread bowl, really yum

Potatoe pancakes again

Hot chocolate - more like hot chocolate pudding - so thick!!

In Vienna, having Maria Theresa - coffee with orange liqueur 

I think this was the best suckling pig I ever had

Don't remember what this was but it was yum

All the patries in Vienna were so good!  

Paprika soup in Budapest

Foie Gras soup

Interesting little dessert - mushmellows with poppy seeds

Hmm goulash... had this numerous times in that part of the world

Here's some variation of goulash again

More goulash!

Pigs cheek - SO AMAZINGLY GOOD!  We only ordered it because we saw on Anthony Bourdain's show that it was his favorite... now I know why!

Goose liver pate - so so so good!  We had the best food in Budapest

Some sort of creamy yummy soup

This was the best drink I've ever had too!  Raspberry white chocolate drink, with real pieces of white chocolate in it!  I am remaking this ASAP

This thing was everywhere in Budapest... it's like baked bread with powdered sugar  on it

This was the best best best cafe ever too!  In Budapest, the mochaccinos were AMAZING, we had 2 each.  And the cakes were so yum too, the one on the right has caramel on top

And of course wiener schnetzel must be had

Lots of mussels in Croatia

Cliff side cafe... drinking wine mid day!

A whole frog!  This sauce was amazing

This was the cheapest and best gyro, it was as big as my face!

More dessert in Croatia

Fresh caught fish in Slovenia, this dish/restaurant was so homey

This is the famous Slovenian dessert that everyone wants you to have.  It's creamy and crunchy, really good

Lots of game in Slovenia, wild boar here

This was our favorite chocolate - I don't know why they do not sell this in the States!  Well very rarely at least.  I've seen it in like 1 store here.  But every time I go to a diff country I always have this.  I believe we had at least one a day lol.  

Ok so now you know how I gained so much weight there!  Hahaha!  But I had some great stuff and would not trade it for anything!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  Eat well!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Gilt Noir

Has anyone ever heard of Gilt Noir?  I had not until I got an email today from Gilt saying that I have been upgraded to their Noir membership.  After a little googling, I found out that they very quietly launched this about 2 years ago to the top 0.01% of customers.  One of the criteria for the people who were considered was that they had to have spent at least $10,000 a year on Gilt.  It's really the "exclusive" club because you can't just sign up, you have to be chosen.  Noir members can preview all the sales before they actually start.  There are exclusive sales only available to Noir members, top priority for wait list, and other events.  Ah ha!  I always wondered why it seems many items sell out within seconds of the start of a sale.  Now I know why!  I actually paid more attention today during my preview of a sale, and noticed that one thing was already sold out!  Ok I know Noir members can only preview but not buy anything before sale starts, so there must be another super duper exclusive club where members can starts shopping early???  Hmmmmm..... I guess it only means that it will be harder and harder to buy stuff on Gilt, I've noticed that you really have to act fastest with Gilt among all the flash sale sites.

Anyway, here's what my email said:

And now when I log on, this is what it looks like:

I have no idea what I did to get selected for this, because I really don't order from Gilt all that much $ wise.  Definitely nowhere close to 10 grand a year, although it sounds like they have loosened their "requirement" to now invite 1% of their members instead of 0.01%.  Lol.  I do order from Gilt maybe about once a month average, but I also return lots of stuff.  The 2 things I can think of that might have served in my advantage are 1. I've been a member since 2009, and 2. I have a good number of referrals who also have purchased from Gilt.  So maybe I should just count myself lucky!  It definitely makes shopping easier when you can decide what you want before the sales start!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Yummy Homemade Protein Balls/Bars

As I mentioned in my post about the book I read called New Rules of Lifting for Women, there are some simple and great recipes in it.  One of them that really caught my eye was this homemade protein bar recipe.  It's suuupperrr easy to make, and it tastes great without all the added sugar, fat and chemicals in ready made protein bars sold at the stores!  And you can make a bunch of them at once and leave them in the fridge for later.

All you need are protein powder (preferably chocolate flavor - I use Isopure by Nature's Path), peanut butter (I like crunchy for some texture but creamy will work too), ground flaxseed, and water!  I guess you can even do without the flaxseed but I think it's a great addition for the omega 3s.

Really there is no measures for this recipe, you just mix a couple scoops of the protein powder with 2 tablespoons or so of peanut butter and about 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed.  Then slowly add water as you stir the mixture to get it into a paste.  And then you can just use your hands and form the paste into whatever shape you like!  You know, bars, balls, cookies, whatever!

I find this consistency is best for forming shape:

The first time I made it, I added too much water.  You really only need like 1/4 of a cup so go easy on that, depending on how much powder and peanut butter you have.  If it looks like this, it probably won't retain shape very easily:

So yeah, if your mixture looks like the first picture, you are good to go.  I just grab some with my hands and roll into a ball shape.

I make as many as I can with the mixture I have, and refrigerate the rest!  

When I've made this, I used 2 scoops of protein powder which is 200 calories and 50g of protein.  2 tbsp of peanut butter which is about 190 calories, about 16g of fat, 6g of carb and 8g of protein.  And 2 tbsp of flaxseed which has about 80 calories, 5g of fat, 5g of carb and 3g of protein.  

I divide that into approximately 10 balls, which means each ball has under 50 calories, 6g of protein, 2g of fat and 1g of carb.  So really you can eat like 4 or 5 of these for a snack.  Lol.  I love that you know exactly what you are eating with this recipe, and it seriously tastes great!  

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Lululemon Run: Your Heart Out Tank & Run: Your Heart Out Skirt

I have been getting some requests for try on reviews of new Lululemon items if I happen to visit the store.  And I happened to go to the store today, to return my Apres Run pullover.  Not that I don't like it, I find it very cute and comfortable.  But it's just too hot and impractical for the weather here.  So I think I should save my money for something really cute that I can get lots of use out of later.

Oh yeah, I saw the Apres Run pullover in persian purple.  I was not a fan of it in this color, I think the fleece material makes the color look kind of dull and lifeless.  And it's more blue than purple.  Persian purple looks better in the Turn Around top.

I didn't want to spend too long at the store today, but I did try on the new Run: Your Heart Out tank, in current.  I really liked this color.  The bra portion is made of luxtreme, and I at first thought the body was made of sheer luon - the fabric that I can never resist.  But it's actually silverescent.  It feels very similar to sheer luon though, I thought.  

Before I tried this tank on, I actually thought for sure I was going to love it and take it home with me.  But after putting it on, I decided it was not for me.  I tried it in my regular size 4, and it fit well in the bust.  But the body was too loose.  It's also pretty long if you leave it uncinched.  But if you cinch it, it becomes kind of balloony.  It's definitely a prego shirt.  Too much for me.  I like my vintage Dance Strap tanks which are kind of the same style, but the body is a much more flattering cut.  So even though I loved the color and material of this tank, I had to pass on it, especially at $58.  Maybe it will look better on someone taller or with a longer torso than me.  I think it looks pretty cute on the model.

I also tried on the Run: Your Heart Out Skirt in black/make davie run crazy print.  

First of all, I think this model has a really long waist or something, but this skirt looks weird on her.  I thought it was a super cute skirt.  Though very short.  I also tried it on in size 4, and it was a perfect fit.  I really like the zipper pockets on the sides.  The description says that these are meant to be tennis ball pockets, but I don't think there is any way you can fit a tennis ball in there.  I don't even think I could put anything other than some cash and maybe a credit card in it.  But they are pretty substantial for a running skirt, my other ones don't really have pockets at all.

The fit is so cute though from every direction, and I love the little bit of this make davie run crazy print peaking out from underneath the black skirt (I saw shorts entirely of this print and it was a bit much).  It does kind of flare out a bit, but in a very girly cutesy way.  I didn't buy it mainly because it's pretty pricey.  I don't think it's worth it to pay over $70 after taxes for a short skirt.  And also because I don't wear skirts that much when I run.  I have 2 Lululemon running skirts.  I love them, and they are great for the summer but I always feel a little too girly when I wear them.  They are not all that practical for the gym, since I feel like people are looking at my butt when I bend down.  I know there's built in shorts, but still.... If I wear skirts all the time though, this would be a great choice.  It matches my new Adidas shoes.  I was very tempted.  =)

I really wanted to try on these charcoal Wunder Unders made in the same running luon material as my Turn Around LS top, since I love how soft it is and I can only imagine how comfortable they would be.  But I did not have time.  Hopefully I'll get a chance to try them on later!
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