Top Three #3

Time for another top three!

1. Brand New [music]

I finally got to see my favorite band live for the first time. Truly a surreal experience. Throughout the whole concert, I was oddly calm but it keeps hitting me in waves that I got to experience them live. Judging from Youtube videos, they can be hit or miss depending on whether they’re feeling it, but they were fantastic last night. I wish I could say the say about the crowd. The crowd/atmosphere was a bit disappointing (venue was on a college campus so a lot of undergrads/younguns) but I think I managed to stand in a pretty good spot/enough of hardcore fans around me to get me excited too. At concerts/large gatherings, I’m that fan in the crowd with his/her arms crossed because I honestly don’t know how else to behave/express myself but other fans’ energies get me to loosen up a bit.

But holy crap. Such a fantastic night. Major thanks to my two friends I convinced to go with me (story of my life haha). I have yet to find my music soulmate-friend.

2. Speakers [things]

When I initially moved to Michigan, I ran out of room for my nice (aka heavy) three piece speaker set and only had room for my $10 pair that my dad bought for me at Fry’s like five years ago. I’ve been using the $10 pair for most of my first year but last time I was home (May), I was determined to fit my nice speakers into my luggage. Once back at school, I immediately pulled them out and oh man, music/TV/movies have not sounded better since. (And seeing how the $10 pair are still in perfect working condition, I brought them into lab since I don’t mind them getting all grody with science).

3. Kayaking [life]

I’ve caught the kayaking bug. Being on the water seems like a big part of summer life here in Michigan, whether it’s tubing, kayaking, canoeing, etc. A few weekends ago, I went kayaking for the first time in years with a group of friends who were similarly unexperienced. And I went canoeing the following week with a friend who just moved to the area.

The first and last time I went kayaking was probably in middle school and it was kayaking in the Baylands (so like… no current). I was in the back seat of like a three person kayak where the front two people were two dudes. So you have this petite Asian girl, kayaking for the first time, trying to steer a whole kayak through narrow passages where the dudes barely paddled because they thought it’d be funny. I ended up ramming us into a bank by accident and then they realized I physically was not able to move the thing by myself and started helping. But I really love being on the water.

Anyway, today, I went kayaking for the first time since then and it was amazing. I went with three others and was in a kayak with one of the ones who had never kayaked before. One of the best days I’ve had in so long. It’s so much fun and it doesn’t feel like exercise but man, got an arm work out in since my friend was paddling for the first time.

panoramic creeper shot of my friend πŸ™‚

It’s definitely a wet and messy experience but it’s totally worth it. Would highly recommend and my graduate program has a kayaking/tubing/canoeing trip planned for later this month. Got to get my tan on before the sun disappears.

Bespoke Post reviews: Roam and Vibes

All boxes reviewed were bought with my own money. However, this post contain a coupon and referral link at the end.

Hi everyone! I just want to do a review about the two Bespoke Post boxes I got these past two months. If you’ve never heard of Bespoke Post before, it’s sort of like Birchbox Man where the box is more lifestyle geared. Bespoke Post offers themed boxes and releases new boxes every month and you’re able to get past month’s boxes as long as they’re still in stock. While Bespoke Post is aimed towards men, I find it the boxes/items to be gender neutral and always well curated (sleek and minimal are the words that come to mind). This review is mostly for the Vibes box, but I’ll talk a little bit about the Roam one too.

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Top Three #2

This post contains affiliate links.

Time for another top three!

1. Wildlife by La Dispute [music]

I’ve mentioned this band so many times on this blog but these guys are just so amazing. I’ve been listening exclusively to their earlier two full lengths and they get better each time.

2. Textured Cross-Back PulloverΒ from Banana Republic [fashion/shopping]

This sweater was on sale last week and with an extra 50% off (ended up being $25!), I couldn’t help but pick it up. I usually don’t understand/like many trends but this crossback design caught my eye and I feel like I can still wear it after it’s no longer trendy (I see similar designs everywhere so I’m assuming it’s a trend…). I love the color (I got the light blue one), the feel of the fabric (weighted and textured but cool), the different ways (sleeveless or long sleeve collared button up underneath, tank underneath, paired with a jacket/scarf) I can wear it, the way it looks on me and how I don’t have anything like it. So much win.

3. Peaches/nectarines [food]

Summer is possibly my least favorite month of the year (yeah, I know). I hate the heat/sun, sweating, the clothing and especially here in Michigan, the humidity. However, the one saving grace of summer are the fruit. I love peaches and nectarines. I buy maybe 5-10 a week to keep up with my cravings. I’ve only been able to find good yellow peaches and nectarines so far but I’m hoping the white ones (I could probably only eat white peaches and nectarines for the rest of my life) will be available soon! So so yummy. Thank you nature!

Those are my (maybe trivial) top three things at the moment. I’m going to try and write up Everlane reviews later today (I think I have like 5+ items). But I did a huge Gap/Old Navy/Banana Republic haul that I just took all the pics for… So there’s that coming up. 😁

-amy

New York: the shopping

I took a much needed break during “spring break,” a term which technically applies to the undergrads but since we’re first years, our schedules are still “school-esque,” to go to New York!

This was the third time I went to New York for fun and first time I traveled with this particular friend. We had similar priorities… shop and eat, eat and shop. And maybe a museum.

And we did a lot of shopping… but even more eating. πŸ˜‰ I thought I’d break up the trip into a shopping post and an eating post starting with the shopping post.

We were in New York from Monday night to Thursday noon and we allotted the entirety of Tuesday for shopping, in and around SoHo.

The two stores we wanted to hit up were & Other Stories and COS, both of which are owned by the H&M Group but only recently came to the US, with physical stores found only in New York. We spent about half of our shopping day in & Other Stories and COS. Amazing. Simply amazing.

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part of the shoe section at & other stories

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My music festival survival guide

So you’re heading to a music festival soon? First time? Or just curious how other introverted festival attendees deal with the masses of people? Then congrats, you’re in the right place. Titling this post “survival guide” is being a bit dramatic but it caught your interest, right?

As mentioned at the bottom of my last post, I going to SF’s Outside Lands music festival with Tammy on Friday. This will be my second large official music festival but my fifth time heading to a multi-artist/multi-stage music thing. Previous to this, I’ve attended Warped Tour x 2, Lilith Fair (does this count?) and Coachella. All very, very different things with very different attendees. But I’ve learned from my past experiences to prepare for this one.

Here are some of my (personal) tips that I like to try to follow for music festivals in no particular order:

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What I’m Watching: Netflix recommendations

I’ve been neglecting my next TV World post since there are so many crime/thriller type shows that are so good. Ideally, I’d like to break up the post according to serial vs procedural shows but it’s a bit difficult since many procedural shows tend to have a serial drama aspect. Hmm… I’ll have to think a bit more about this.

While I’m thinking about that post, I thought I’d share a few movies that are on Netflix that I’ve enjoyed that might not be recommended enough. All of these can be streamed on Netflix as of 7/20/14 (click on the posters to go to the Netflix page), and all of these were made within the last seven years.

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Random thoughts

Just a few things that have been on my mind recently. Like mini-things that would best be posted as a tweet… I don’t use twitter, but I do have a blog and it allows me to write more than 140 characters at a time.

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Here’s a random photo (by me) of the Pacific Ocean but from the East/Taiwan (I’ve only ever seen it in person from the West/California).

1. Received my order of moisturizers (by TheBalm) that I’m excited to try and review. I hate trying new things (I have so many samples I never use) in case something bad happens, but I really need to just dive in and shake my routine up because there’s always room for improvement. I’ll share my thoughts after trying them out for a while.

2. Bought a Memebox! Specifically, I got Luckybox #4. I signed up during their 10 point promotion and emailed them with a blog that referred me (just google “memebox referral”so find a blog) and boom! Got 5 more points. Their point system is pretty nice since each point translates to one dollar. So I had $15 to spend and that brought the cost of the box down to a little less than $13 and that includes shipping. I really want to try the LJH Tea Tree 90 Essence since it seems to be a hit. It’s not going to start shipping until the 9th but I’ll try to keep you posted on that as well.

3. My current clay mask (Botanics Conditioning Clay Mask) is running low and I stopped by Target the other day to buy my third bottle of the awesome stuff and saw it wasn’t on the shelves anymore! Instead, there was the Boots Botanics Ionic Clay Mask with Willowbark. I didn’t see if there are any ingredient differences yet, but I think my HG mask been discontinued (bottles are selling for like $30 on ebay when it was $10 at Target) and replaced (as my friend would say, “shit, son”). At least the replacement seems to be getting good reviews. I’ll probably try it once my current bottle runs out. But needless to say, I’m pretty bummed.

4. I have to admit, I was a little surprised to see this video pop up on my tumblr dash today:

Our Last Night is a band I used to listen to and love back in high school (like 2007-2010). I kind of lost interest once I started college. And their sound was heavier but always catchy. Also, back then, the lead singer was like 14. Way to make me feel old, dude. And it’s kind of weirding me out how he and his older brother could pass for twins. But that aside, I’m glad they’re doing well (other songs, acoustic covers and actual covers seem solid), and it seems like their talents have matured. I bet they have great live shows. Definitely going to go back and check out their recent stuff.

5. Julep is now sold at Sephora?!?? I’m not a huge Julep fan but maybe the colors I’ve tried happened to be the not so good ones. IDK… I still think Zoya has the better formula and it’s cheaper.

6. It’s already June and I still have no idea how to move across the country (in August). Amtrak? USPS? … I should figure that out.

7. Game of Thrones s04e08 ending was brutal. I knew what was going to happen, but I did not expect that much visual and aural detail. Seriously unnecessary. Ugh. Still can’t unsee/unhear. You know what I’m talking about (or maybe you don’t but be glad you don’t).

8. No idea if anyone actually reads this, but if you’re interested in subscription boxes, you should check out my friend’s blog here. She posts pretty honest reviews of what she likes and dislikes and has cool posts about swaps she’s made and little life tidbits.

9. WORLD CUP IN 9 DAYS.

-amy