My ‘for me’ errands

Beauty & Fashion, Food & Travel

Here is my ever growing list of things I do to look after and pamper myself.

Daily:

  • Prayer of thanks for all that I have.
  • Shower/bathe myself.
  • Attend to oral and facial hygiene.
  • Send M to kindergarten except on weekends :).

Weekly:

  • Hair wash and blow dry at my local salon.
  • Manicure without varnish.
  • Personal Yoga training session.
  • Life and Breathing session via Skype with Gaia.
  • Yoga session in the Park.
  • Date night with Mr B.
gold facial

Gold facials are the best. They make me look gold. source

Fortnightly:

  • Pedicure without varnish.
  • Thai massage/aromatherapy massage.
  • Psychotherapy session.
  • Cinema night with friends or Mr B.

Monthly:

  • Bowen therapy session.
  • Facial at Villa Kennedy Spa.
  • Four hour brunch at either a nice Japanese, French or Italian restaurant with a few hilarious and uplifting friends.
  • Book club meeting with brunching friends (obv on a separate occasion) where we discuss either very serious, intellectual books or just entertaining drivel or just talk nonsense until the restaurant asks us to leave.

Quarterly:

  • Three night stay at Das Kranzbach, located near Garmish Parten Kirchen. This is definitely a sanity saver.
  • A visit to the dermatologist to make sure my skin is in top condition.
  • Weekend trips to London with M. Food, friends and Selfridges. Need I say more?

Biannually:

  • An exotic family holiday entailing sun, surf, good food and being embarrassingly lazy rolled into a week.
  • Trip to Oz to see family and friends. We don’t travel economy.

Annually:

  • Another family holiday, but destinations are always a bit quirkier. Sun is not an essential, but proper doses entertainment and good food is a given. Think Bhutan, Helsinki and Faroe Islands.
  • Pre-Christmas shopping in New York. Economy travel is out of the question.

With so many errands to run and so little time, isn’t it then a tragedy relief that the list above  (minus my daily rituals!) is just a fantasy? And isn’t it funny that most of the rituals don’t actually involve acquiring material goods. Yeah, yeah they still involve spending a bit of moolah, but it costs nothing to daydream!

Why I do make up.

Beauty & Fashion

A Facebook post from Julia Roberts shared by a friend prompted me to write this blog post. The beautiful actress recently wrote,

“Perfection is a disease of a nation. We overlay our faces with tons of make-up. We get botoxs and even starve ourselves to become that perfect size. We try to fix something but you can’t fix what you can’t see. It’s the soul that needs the surgery. It’s time that we take a stand. How can you expect someone else to love you if you don’t love yourself? You have to be happy with yourself. It doesn’t matter what you look like on the outside, it’s whats on the inside that counts. Today, I want to put up a makeup-free photo. I know I have wrinkles on my skin but today I want you to see beyond that. I want to embrace the real me and I want you to embrace who you are, the way you are, and love yourself just the way you are.”

And with it, she posted a picture of herself looking beautiful and radiant sans make up. But she’s Julia Roberts. She has great genes, and is naturally and commercially beautiful without help from Charlotte Tilbury. Magic Foundation, how I covet thee!!

TOM-FORD-Private-Blend-Lip-Color-Exclusive-Wait-List-212-872-2813-

I want you. I need you…Thank you so much Ms AJK for my first TF lippy!! source

I completely agree with what she is saying. Everyone needs more of that juicy self-loving. But …

Look. The love and respect I have for my makeup-free self is unconditional. Took a load of work, many tears, therapy and taking a whole lot of responsibility for my thoughts and not blaming the parents to be at a place where I can look at myself in the mirror in the morning and say with complete convition, “I love you. Warts/wrinkles/spots/fill in the blanks and all, I love you!”. No cringing, just plain old love directed at me.

However, that doesn’t mean I have to love or like the way I sometimes look in the morning without the smooth skin filters that make up provides. No siree. Do you always love or like your family members at all times? If you do, you’re a better person than me. So it goes without saying that you should not have to “love” your appearance in order to be a loveable/socially acceptable/normal/non vain and narcissistic person. Appearance isn’t everything and it shouldn’t be, but I care about how I look. If that makes me vain, so be it. Sometimes the odd hormonal break out, fatigue and poor dietary choices results in a face I don’t want to present to the world. A face that I don’t particularly care for when I look in the mirror.

Make up and the millions of ways you can recreate looks by the simple application of eyeliner and mascara, or blush and concealer is something that I’m grateful for. I don’t make my face up for anyone but myself. If it were up to Mr B, I wouldn’t spend any more cents on make up as he prefers me bare faced. I don’t do it for him. To present my husband with a dolled up version of me to keep him happy in his marital choice in having me as his wife is not why I spend a crazy lot of money on make up. I do it for me. I love the magical way it transforms a tired looking and feeling, three decades and more year old woman into someone who is wider-eyed and more refreshed. It gives me a small confidence boost especially when I’m feeling sick, sad and lonely (although those moments are, touch wood, not that frequent). It gives me ten minutes in the morning to myself. And bonus, it saves me from having surgical procedures done, like double eyelid or eye widening surgery. The power of the eyeliner and the v-eyeshadow blending technique has given me more appreciation and love for my Asian monolids and features than surgery would have to look more Western. I would have bigger eyes, more Western eyes, but let’s face facts. I’m of Korean Heritage and I don’t want to look like I’m from Sweden or a Manga doll. I have small eyes and accept them. I don’t crave perfection in my appearance the way Julia Roberts describes how obsessed people can be in their aesthetic. I just love to see a more polished version of myself when I look in the mirror. And what I love even more is how I feel when I’ve spent a few minutes highlighting this or evening out that.

And as much as loving the ‘underneath the surface you’ is important, it’s also important to love the way you feel about how you look on the outside. I have a few loved ones who have experienced either chronic acne, psoriasis or other so called and perceived un-beautiful physical features. It can be a major cause of anxiety, depression and dampening of the soul. Just Youtube ‘acne covering make up’ and you’ll see dozens of vloggers sharing their stories and experiences with acne. You’ll realise just how traumatising something so benign can be (first world probs and all that), but you’ll also see the magnificent transformational effects that make up can have not just physically but also emotionally and soulfully. I’ve learned a lot from many vloggers and make up professionals who are so passionate about making people feel amazing through make up. For them (Frmheadtotoe, Wayne Goss, Charlotte Tilbury, Lisa Eldrige), I am and will be forever grateful.

Some people say make up is anti-feminist. I wholeheartedly disagree. Think about what feminism is actually about. It’s about choice. That and being able to make the decision to wear a bit of lippy without people assuming you’re either a slut, want to cater to a man’s desires, have really low self esteem or all of the above. In any case, at the end of the day it doesn’t matter what ‘they’ say. What matters is how I feel. I feel good and have fun with my high street and high end beautifiers. I love myself before I slap on the slap. And I love my appearance more when I’ve finished curling my eyelashes.  That’s why I do make up.

Real beauty.

Beauty & Fashion

I think it’s fair to say that most people have quite a few un-pretty days in their lifetime. I know I have the odd day where walking around with a paper bag over my face seems a real option. Heck, a whole body bag would be nice at times. Especially at that time of the month.

Source: etsy.com via Beth on Pinterest

This video really reminded me that beauty (or lack of ) is founded on perception. And most of us do not perceive the beauty that shines through the layers of anatomy that house our essence.

I’m sure when I’m sixty or seventy, I’ll look back at photo albums and wonder what the fuss and insecurity was all about.It’s time to stop the worrying, stressing and insecurity that self flagellation brings. It’s time to own our beauty.

S/S 13 Deliciousmother style.

Beauty & Fashion

I’m feeling kinda good. The greyness is making way for some blue in the London sky and I can actually see the sun beyond the clouds. If only this city had more sunny days…I’m sure we’d see happier faces.

As I type I’m trying hard to ignore Amazing M’s singing. She’s supposed to be napping but has lately acquired the habit of singing a mash up of “Twinkle twinkle” and “Old Macdonald had a farm” interspersed with guttural laughs and asking for more. Does she see ghosts? Who is she asking more from? This goes on for about fifteen minutes until she finally drifts off for an hour. God, is she frickin’ cute.

The two naps she has are my saviour. It’s when I get stuff done, whether it be cleaning, relaxing or internetting. May M continue with the two naps until she goes to school.

Back to the topic of today’s post: DM’s spring/summer wardrobe. It may be a little early to be thinking of lighter clothes, especially for a very practical mother who is far removed from the fashion industry. But I’m a little over wearing Gap, and as practical as black leggings are, I would much rather be ensconced on the sofa watching “Home and Away” wearing this…

 

issa

source

I’m hoping to have a bright and cheerful wardrobe this spring and summer. Adventurous and high fashion isn’t exactly my style, but I’m going to get out of my comfort zone next season and Vogue it up without embarrassing family and friends. Hopefully.

A girly night out sans hubby and baby!

Beauty & Fashion, Miscellaneous

A couple of nights ago I was invited to go to the Australian Fashion Festival by a lovely girlfriend. Held at the beautiful Sydney Town Hall, tickets provided not only great seats to the show but also a peek at the backstage goings on in preparation for the event. Extremely slender models with vertiginous heels aplenty, we were given a great show by designers I have never heard of. Goes to show how ‘with it’ I am with Oz fashion.

The really fun part for me was the after show event. There were promotional stands by brands sponsoring the event, which allowed us to get posing for fun pictures in silly accessories (we went for the Dame Edna sunglasses and feather boa) as well a lip colour make over and goody bags filled with products. I opted for a bright red lippy which was very fun, but it’s going to take me a while to get brave enough to wear it out full time.

So inspired by this fashion frenzy fun that I have resolved to attend London’s Fashion Week 2013!

Have Dirndl, will drink Bier.

Beauty & Fashion, Food & Travel

I now have a dirndl.

Not a butt cheek revealing Halloween/fancy dress/give me an excuse to dress like a stripper dirndl, but a genuine Bavarian folk dress.

So all I have to do is organise a trip to Oktoberfest, drink, sing and be merry.

 

 

We’ve been doing lots of exercise in Germany which explains the gaps between posts. Today we went on a 10km hike in the Spessart area, trekking through beautiful forests. After a lovely lunch of venison at a local bierhaus, we drove back home, ate cake and then had a short power nap in the backyard.

Amazing M has been sleeping well at Oma and Opa’s house (go sleep training!) and having such a great time with them in the backyard amongst flowers and something we don’t have much of in London: grass. Long live Summer.

 

Note to self: I am happy for Miranda Kerr, Kate Middleton, Oprah and Lady Gaga

Beauty & Fashion, Miscellaneous

Admit it. When you know or meet someone that has a fabulous life situation (career, money, looks, love, babies who sleep for 12 hours at a stretch etc) we consciously or subconsciously counter balance this by looking for a negative in this fab person’s life. For example: Ms X is the CEO of a luxury cosmetics company, has a caring and sensitive partner and lives in a beautiful converted Victorian terrace in a desired postcode. Too bad she probably can’t have kids as she’s turning 40 next year, and it looks like she could go on a detox program. And she’s not that nice, really.

What can happen if you let the ego take over your thoughts.
via brandfreak.com

Really? Did I just think that out aloud?

It’s only human nature to compare, contrast and juggle judgments in our head and with others to somehow make ourselves come up trump. That’s the ego. It doesn’t like to be second best. It ignores the simple fact that someone is always going to be prettier/thinner/bigger/taller/richer/wittier/smarter/cooler/more bootilicious than you are.

So what’s the antidote to this bitchiness and insane mindache? Tell the ego to shut up and just be happy for the person with the million dollar bank account who just so happens to be a nice, good looking philanthropist. When good happens to one, it doesn’t mean there’s going to be less good going around for you. If you feel yourself being truly jealous, you know you need to work on your attitude.

And so with my own advice in mind I’m gonna try really hard to be happy for the Miranda Kerrs of this world.

(I bet her son is sleeping through. Well, good for her! She needs to look well slept for her job.)

TGIF!

Beauty & Fashion

Thank God it is Friday!

Days sorta meld into each other for me, but I always look forward to Fridays as it means I get some proper family time with Mr B and Amazing M. Increased contact time with the other half potentially increases chances of falling out over something trivial BUT it is still lovelier than doing it alone. Sometimes I feel like I’m on the set of a hearing impaired children’s educational show: “And now mummy’s putting the washing in the machine…and now mummy’s heating up some soup…mummy will be back, so you sit here and play with the laptop while I put the nappy in the bin…” and so the one sided conversations go, along with wild sign language/Makaton signing. I am normally introverted, but lack of adult conversation leads me to talk to strangers given half a chance.

Luckily I got the chance to meet up with a lovely friend in town today so I was able to have a two way adult conversation that involved more than grunting, panting, growling (M) and sing songy speech (me).

Whilst in town I picked up these wild shorts! Had my eye on them for a while and snapped them up as they went on sale today.

Some sun to expose my pins in these would be nice!!  via massimodutti.com

About those sparkly loafers – I wonder if I would be able to pull it off. A bit of bling on the feet would do a girl some good.

Dresses and lobster.

Beauty & Fashion, Food & Travel

Friday was a day I was very much looking forward to all week. I was literally nursing Amazing M back to health and I was getting a little bored of talking to myself and speaking the language of waaas and baaas.

Friday not only promised the return of Mr B from a three day absence, but also an outing with a girlfriend to the V&A to see the British Ball Gown exhibition as well as some dinner afterwards.

The exhibition was delightful. We saw many frocks we could easily see ourselves in. Much to my surprise one of my faves was a strapless lace print dress made of latex by Atsuko Kudo. Super flattering if you have the figure of a dummy.

And then there was dinner: Burger and Lobster. It’s a great concept of a restaurant – brainchild of the owners of Goodman’s Steakhouse (best in London, in my view). The menu consists of three items- Lobster, Burger or lobster sandwich and servings of fries and salad with each dish. The cocktail menu is divided into B or L sections. We both went for the lobster, washed down with cocktails and beer. I must say that dinner that late never tasted so good (I think we were served around  11pm).

It felt so great to go out and get some girlfriend time, discussing everything good girlfriends normally discuss. It made me realise I need to get some more me time. I have been neglecting myself of late and I have every intention of fixing that on the condition that I get home before 1am. Two days later I am still recovering!

Tennis ready?

Beauty & Fashion

Our family holiday is encroaching and I am really looking forward to some sunshine, great food and activity.

I have invited the in laws to join us and before you say, “Say, WHAT!?!” you must hear me out.

For starters, they are amazing people.  I couldn’t ask for lovelier in-laws, and they are so great with Amazing M.  Then there is the factor that they get to see and spend time with her while we do some adult activity. Biking, swimming and tennis to name just a few activities you just couldn’t do as a couple with an infant.   Plus, we get to spend some quality time with them which is important for us to do.

I am au fait with swimming, cycling, hiking, yoga-ing and iron pumping, but tennis is not something I am currently good at.  I haven’t played proper tennis since the fourth grade tennis club I attended.  I spent the whole two weeks avoiding this terrifying boy who was calling me racist names (which is kinda ironic as he himself was of a minority ethnic background).

So with the intention of leaving the holiday with some basic tennis skills, I will get some professional coaching at the resort.

Mr B insisted that good tennis shoes were a must, despite my protestations that my current Nikes would do the trick.  And browsing through the tennis sections of sports stores did little to inspire me to get the plastic out.   I made a New Year’s resolution to only purchase things that I really loved, and not because it has a 70% discount.  This is where the internet gets very useful.  I googled ‘best tennis shoes for women’ and a few sites came up that had some useful information and selection of shoes.

And then I saw it.

The Nike Lunar Speed.

And I had to have it.

Well, I didn’t really have to have it, but if Mr B was insisting on getting me a pair of tennis shoes, who am I to decline?

I could get really silly and get kitted out in a cute Fred Perry ensemble, but there is no need to be ostentatious when style level is clearly the polar opposite of skill level.

Wish me luck!