Memosne: January 2011

Black Bird

Starting off the day right! I love hot chocolate in the mornings. =) 

When I like one type of clothing, I have to buy a million versions of them. Not necessarily the same thing, but in different colors and styles until my closet is full of that one thing. Recently, I've been loving bodycon dresses. I bought this body con dress at a Forever 21 in Tokyo during one of my recent visits there. Although I've heard American Apparel sells a similar dress, I fell in love with this one when I saw it on the hanger. Something about the cut out shoulders makes it wonderful to me.

As you can tell from my previous outfit post, I love camel brown sweaters. This "old man sweater" was bought from the Men's section of a Hong Kong H&M. I love the felt elbow pads! They make me feel like a college professor. It's one of my favorites. 

These lace stockings were in a two-pack from Uniqlo...they're amazing! The thing I love about these is that they're not so overtly lace-y you can wear them with patterned things or worry about looking like a hooker. =D Haha. Some people can pull really lovely lace stockings off, and I envy their legs. 

This hat is more dramatic and lovely than the casual day hat I wore earlier. Of course because my mum is an elegant lady, the hat belongs to her. During the sunnier months of summer I think you'll be seeing me wearing this hat a lot more. With permission of course. ;) 

Fa Chai Says "Hello!"

Thanks for coming! 


Pink Elephant

The weather is so muggy lately! I'm looking forward to the sunny, warm, clear skied Vancouver summer. I want to explore the city a little bit more. Lots of eats, lots of clothes, and lots of adventures. I'm such a bum adventurer...thwarted so easily by rain!

Although I generally suffer from "can't dress myself for winter-itus", I have a deep set love for sweaters and crazy knits. This sweater is quickly becoming my favorite amongst my, admittedly tiny, collection of sweaters. I got this particular sweater quite recently, when my mother and I were exploring Taiwan together. It's enormous and pink, with lovely offset dolman sleeves...I could definitely get lost within this sweater.

I raided my mum's closet and made away with this vintage Chanel chain belt. I'm in love with it! I feel like I'll be wearing it a lot more, no matter what season. 

Thanks for coming~

Burgoo W. 10th

Interior of Burgoo Restaurant

When I lived on campus I loved going to Burgoo. It was delicious food and only a short bus ride away from campus. Upon entering Burgoo, you're surrounded with a rustic interior, dark unfinished wood, and antique travel posters. Ever since I've left for Taiwan I've been looking forward to coming home and ordering one of their soup and sandwich combinations.

Burgoo Menu

On this rainy, cold Vancouver day I thought it was the most appropriate time to introduce Burgoo to my mom. Going over to their West 10th branch, my regular haunt, we were actually greeted with pretty slow service. The waiters and waitresses weren't especially friendly, and seated us at our table for two with indifference. Our waitress took awhile to even greet us, and our water was even slower to come. However, even the cold service couldn't phase me. I loved Burgoo and I was looking forward to sinking my teeth into one of their delicious sandwiches. Eating one of their sandwiches is NOT a task to do when you're on a date with someone that you want to impress. Their sandwiches are massive, and unless you have a huge mouth, it's difficult to eat any of their sandwiches with finesse.

Burgoo Soup and Sandwich Combination: Butternut Squash Soup and the Tasty Chicken Sandwich

Burgoo Soup and Sandwich Combination: Straight Up Tomato Soup and the Ham and Brie Sandwich

My mother ordered the Butternut Squash soup and the "Tasty Chicken" Sandwich (cucumber, apple, salad greens, and chicken breast), while I ordered the Straight Up Tomato Soup and the Ham and Brie sandwich. And to be completely honest with you? Both were extremely disappointing.

Burgoo Ham and Brie Sandwich

My sandwich was a cheap, terrible sandwich. The brie was hard (not the delicious gooey kind), they left the rind on, the tomatoes and salad were tasteless, and the ham didn't have much taste either.

I love tomato soups, and this was an ok tomato soup. Burgoo's straight up tomato soup is a very tangy, sour Tomato soup. The consistency is not especially thick, but the tomato "pulp" and the liquid of the soup separated quite easily. You can also see the grotesque bubble on top. I understand that the Burgoo kitchen staff drizzled some olive oil on top of the soup as a finisher, but even after I had eaten that, there was a thin, watery layer of liquid on top of the tomato soup.

I can't speak for my mother, but she also seemed very disappointed in her sandwich, and had extreme difficulty trying to fit it into her mouth. (Insert that's what she said joke here)

Burgoo Soup and Sandwich Combination: Butternut Squash Soup and the Tasty Chicken Sandwich

Burgoo Tasty Chicken Sandwich

While my mother loved the butternut squash soup from Mistral, this butternut squash soup was the anti-thesis of that. It was overly sweet and completely one dimensional in flavor. I was just extremely disappointed. AND our breath smelled TERRIBLE afterwards. 

I talked to one of the regulars and was told that the senior chefs had moved to their Main Street branch, so that could explain the loss in quality. 

I'm willing to give Burgoo another chance, but new patrons beware! 

Our soup and salad combos were $12 dollars each. 

Thanks for coming!
Kid Friendly: Yes
Price: $$$ out of $$$$$
Repeatability: Maybe 


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Mistral French Bistro ~ Vancouver

Mistral Bistro Menu

My mother and I were very excited about this year's 2011 Dine Out Vancouver event. We've been looking forward to trying some new restaurants in our area and Dine Out Vancouver is the perfect way to do it. All throughout Vancouver, restaurants offer three course tasting menus for $18, $28, and $38 dollars, and give you the chance to sample their choice dishes. Tonight, my mother and I had a wonderful dinner at the French Bistro Mistral, on West Broadway. I apologize in advance for the sketchy photos. I blame the romantic lighting. ;)

Walking into Bistro Mistral we were enveloped by the wonderful smell of pure, unadulterated deliciousness. The open kitchen may have had something to do with it, but the smell of savory foods cooking...I get hungry thinking about it now. The interior was dimly lit, very romantic, and incorporates a simple Tuscan theme throughout the entire restaurant. Expectations set high, I was eager to taste their food. Everything from the attitudes of the waiters to the decor was so warm and cozy! As for the meal...

Mistral Vancouver Dine Out Menu 2011

Upon entering the restaurant we were greeted with friendly A+ service, the maĆ®tre d’ was kind and seated us at our table even though we were half an hour early. Throughout the night we were met with the same quality standard: I never, well rarely, had an empty glass of water, our coats were taken politely, and the waiters and waitresses were always bright and chipper. 

Bread and Butter Basket
Dat Free Bread Tho

My mother and I both opted for the Dine Out meal: I had the butternut squash soup, Grilled Alberta AAA Ribeye steak, and the warm chocolate cake for dessert. My mother chose the same main course and dessert, but with the Dungeness Crab appetizer instead. 

Butternut Squash Soup Cardamom Foam with the Mushroom Duxelle
Butternut Squash Soup, cardamom foam, mushroom Duxelle
The butternut squash soup was divine. It was thick, creamy, and delicious. Topped with said cardamom foam, diced, sauteed mushrooms and black pepper the soup was seasoned just right. I was afraid that the soup might be overly sweet, but the chefs at Mistral were skilled and the soup was just the right amount of savory that I needed. My mother had a spoonful and also throughly enjoyed it. ;) 

Fresh Dungeness Crab with avocado and cocktail sauce, smoked sockeye salmon terrine
Fresh Dungeness Crab in layers with avocado and cocktail sauce, Smoked Sockeye Salmon 
The Dungeness crab cake was absolutely delicious. It was fresh, didn't taste fishy at all, and had the right balance of creaminess and citrus that people like in seafood appetizers. There was squirt of lemon on top, a delicious mayonnaise-y dungeness crab middle layer, and a base of creamy avocado. It was pretty evenly balanced~at first bite you really want to eat everything, but by the end you were sated and ready to move onto the next dish.

Grilled AAA Alberta Rib Eye Steak, Creamy Green Peppercorn Sauce with House Fried or Steak Frites
Grilled AAA Alberta Rib Eye steak, creamy green peppercorn sauce, house fries
To be honest, I was a little disappointed with the steak. Although my mother and I ordered the steak medium rare, most of the steak was cooked to a medium well consistency. The sauce wasn't necessarily a sauce, but more like a clear gloop. Although said to be creamy, it tasted more something like...a corn starchy glaze of some sort. 

Cross Section of Steak Frites

Home Fries on a plate

The fries had a mixed review from my mother and I. I loved them and she hated them. However, one thing was true the fries were an equal amount of soggy and crispy. Some fries were incredibly crispy and others were just lightly fried on the outside with wet interiors. I ate most of mine. =) 

Chocolate Cake, Dark Chocolate Mousse whipped cream and chocolate sauce
Chocolate cake topped with Mistral Dark Chocolate Mousse, whipped cream and chocolate sauce
I was pretty full at this point so I couldn't form a strong opinion about the dessert. What I noted was that the cake was pretty dry. You had to eat it with the whipped cream and chocolate mousse, or else it tasted like chocolate bread. 

All in all I enjoyed the meal, and I think I'll be going back. At least for the Butternut Squash soup. 

Thanks for Coming! 

Kid Friendly: Possible, but most of the patrons were adults
Price: $$$ out of $$$$$
Repeatability: Yes 


Outfit of the Day Including H&M, BCBG

I like this outfit quite a bit to be honest. =) To me it's simple and striking, and something that I do regularly wear out. =) I bought my sweater dress from an H&M in Hong Kong. As everyone was wading through the t-shirts, summer dresses, and shorts, I was digging through the Wintry sales collection. Everyone thought I was crazy then, but I think wearing the sweater in the winter makes it worth it.

The headband is a little more recent from a BCBG sale. I think it was originally marked for $23 dollars? I got it for around $11? Something like that. I love BCBG, I'm jealous that the states has a student ambassador program. Maybe I'll get off my butt do something about it. One day...where do I even start?

Outfit of the Day: H&M and BCBG
Filters, Filters, everywhere! 

I still feel a little stupid posing. I'm sure you can tell.

Outfit of the Day: H&M and BCBG

Outfit of the Day: H&M and BCBG

How do you feel about photoshop filters?

My mother and I are trying some new restaurants for Dine Out Vancouver 2011. We're headed to a French Bistro named Mistral. I'll post a review of that later. As for now, tell me what you think. ;)

Fa Chai

My dog is a cutie patootie! AND a snazzie dresser. =) I thought I'd share.
Yorkshire Terrier in Sweater

Yorkshire Terrier in Cute Sweater

Collage of High End Items: Chloe, BCBG, Miu Miu
Chloe Bag, Topshop Shorts, BCBG Ring, Toms Shoes Boots, Miu Miu tops

I'm pretty boring. 

Caramel Camel

This is my first real outfit post, and I'm sort of embarrassed about it. I think everyone feels a little bit awkward the first time they're posing. 

Urban Outfitters, Vintage Outfit of the Day Fashion
Urban Outfitters Urban Renewal Dress, Uniqlo Tights, Candish Shoes, Saburoku Natural Cardigan, Vintage Belt

Urban Outfitters Vintage Outfit of the Day Fashion
This is a terrible grimace. Hahaha. >__<

Urban Outfitters, Vintage Fashion Outfit of the Day

Laneige Pore Trouble

Edit: Hello All! If you've googled the Laneige Pore Trouble Line you've probably reached this page expecting reviews and some user experience. Unfortunately, the acne system that I've previously blogged about has been reformulated and consolidated into a "four step line" consisting of these products: 
  1. Pore Deep Cleansing Foam (Similar to the face wash below)
  2. Pore Clearing Essence
  3. Pore Tightening Essence
  4. Pore Minimizing Pack (Mask) 
I haven't had the chance to try out the new formulations, but I am disappointed that Laneige had moved towards an "After Breakout Care" line versus a "combat acne" skincare line. I don't think I'll have the chance to the the new formulation either...I've already been looking for cheaper and more easily available skincare options for my skin so I'm currently in the process of phasing Laneige out entirely. The only good thing about this change is that they've changed the terrible glass packaging to a much friendlier and safer plastic alternative. Thank you for listening guys! I'm sorry for the inconvenience. =) 

Laneige, my one and only skin love. I've been suffering moderate to severe acne since I was thirteen, and my acne just hacked down my self esteem. I've tried dermatologists recommendations, high end brands, low end brands; the list goes on and on. I've tried everything: Proactiv, Murad, Clearasil, Clean and Clear, birth control, Sensiclear, La Roche Posay, Vichy, oral antibiotics, Origins, drug store, etc. Nothing seemed to work and the dermatologist's antibiotic recommendations only made me nauseous and my hair fall out...even after 6 months there still was no change. I was convinced I would deal with acne for the rest of my life and simply settled into a humdrum skin routine using La Roche Posay, hoping that it would eventually help my skin.

One dreary winter day, I ran out of the moisturizer that came with the La Roche Posay anti-acne set and had no other moisturizing products in my dorm. In a panic, I searched my room thoroughly, making sure I hadn't missed anything, because acne sufferers know that a dry winter day plus no moisturizer equals the kiss of death for skin. Finally, my eyes fell on a small blue Laneige bag I had gotten the previous summer.  I had purchased some makeup from Laneige, and because of that, was rewarded with a gift bag and lots of samples. I looked through everything until I found a gel based moisturizer. I slathered it all over my face and thought nothing of it. 

The next morning when I woke up, it was like the ultimate transformation. My skin had never looked better. I felt like this:

Infatuated, I bought their "Pore Trouble Line" and have been acne free for two years. =) This isn't such a bad stat since I first bought their products two years ago. =P

Pore Trouble Line: An Overview

This line's main acne fighting ingredient is Salicylic Acid, if you have previously had an adverse reaction to this product please don't use it. >__< 

I also don't list the prices down here, because every single site I've checked has wildly different pricing. I don't want to provide people with erroneous information, but I wish you guys the best of luck with using Laneige!

Laneige Pore Clear Cleansing Foam

This is the face wash that is associated with the Pore Trouble Line, the Pore Clear Cleansing Foam, I personally use it twice a day morning and night without any adverse effects. It has a mild exfoliant quality, and lathers up to a rich foam with small bubbles. It always makes my skin feel squeaky clean and cleansed. I wash my face twice with this, once to clean off makeup, and a second time to cleanse the actual impurities away.   

What the Official Site Has to Say: 

- Works into both micro bubbles that cleanses deep inside pores and larger bubbles that cleanses the surface. Leaves your skin clean and oil-free. 

- Morocco Clay (Ghassoul) works as micro scrubbing beads that purify skin and Clove extracts control sebum secretion to leave your pores clean. 

- Contains mild plant-based cleansing ingredients for gentle cleansing. 

- Pore Purifying Complex removes toxins and impurities that are around your pores and strengthens your defense system against pore-related troubles.

Pore Trouble Skin Refiner

This is the Pore Trouble Skin Refiner, and is serves as the toner to the Pore Trouble line! Some toners I have used burn or itch on contact, but this one makes me feel clean and refreshed. No burning, no itching, no redness.=) So that's nice. It has a refreshing scent as well. =) I use it in conjunction with the wash, so like the wash I use it twice a day, morning and night. 

What the Official Site Has to Say:

- The Trouble Care Skin Toner is specially formulated for strengthening skin pore health. When applied, it leaves a smooth and fresh feeling without any stickiness. 

- Removes excessive corneous skin dead cells and prevents keratinization, resulting in a smoother and cleaner skin. 

- Contains salicylic acid and triclosan, which help prevent skin problems by removing excessive sebum and corneous skin dead cells, thus cleansing the skin pores. 

- Contains tea tree oil, licorice extract, raspberry extract, clove extract and parsley extract, which help suppress and relieve skin problems. 

- Contains natural Lactobacillus extract which helps balance PH values and strengthen immune system of skin pores, thus improving adult skin problems caused by factors such as hormone imbalance and air pollution. 

Pore Trouble Emulsion
This is the Pore Trouble Emulsion, and is sort of the "treatment step" that the Pore Trouble Line has. Much like the Pore Trouble Skin Refiner it doesn't irritate my skin, where  past products that I have used burned, itched, or caused redness. It comes out of a pump, and is very hygienic. My skin absorbs the emulsion quickly and it doesn't leave my skin feeling sticky. 

What the Official Site Has to Say: 
- A skin lotion which uses the Pore Trouble Technology, suitable for use on adult skin to remove the source of skin pore problems, and protect the skin as part of the step by step acne care.

-Specially formulated for treating frequently occurring skin problems, it spreads smoothly and easily without leaving any stickiness, and gives a moist and refreshing feeling after it is applied to the skin.

-The Pore Trouble Technology protects the skin by removing and preventing excessive sebum and corneous skin dead cells, resulting in a beautiful and revitalized skin. 

-Salicylic acid and triclosan help to prevent skin problems by removing excessive sebum and corneous skin dead cells, and cleansing the skin pores.

-Contains tea tree oil, licorice extract, raspberry extract, clove extract and parsley extract, which help suppress and relieve skin problems. 

-Contains natural Lactobacillus extract which helps balance PH values and strengthen immune system of skin pores, thus improving adult skin problems caused by factors such as hormone imbalance and air pollution. 
Laneige Pore Tightening Essence
This is the Laneige Pore Tightening Essence, not part of the Pore Tightening line, it is an essential step in making my skin matte throughout the day. Although I don't believe it truly makes your pores smaller, it makes my skins surface less rough, and slightly more refined. I use it once in the morning and once in the evening, and is an integral step in my skincare regimen. 

What the Official Site Has to Say: 

- Tightens enlarged and drooped pores with cooling texture when applied. 

- Keeps your skin look smooth and clean by quick absorbing without stickiness, elastically tightening pores, and controlling excessive sebum. 

- A pore-tex peptide ingredient tightens enlarged pores and contracts the skin around pores by functioning to recover bone growth proteins and elastic proteins that prop up skin cells and pore barrier. 

- Thuja orientalis seed extract, patent ingredient of AMOREPACIFIC, takes control of excessive excretion of sebum, and keeps pores look more clearly refined.

- With pore berry complex ingredients, it helps feed the supply of water into the skin whose hormonal balance was disturbed by excessive sebum secretion and lack of moisture, and it fortifies the defense system against skin troubles.

Laneige Pore Trouble Hydro Gel Moisturizer

This is the final step to the Pore Trouble skin care line, and it is the Hydro Gel moisturizer. The bottle is pretty small compared to the Refiner and the Essence, but you really don't need a lot of this stuff. The Hydro Gel is actually a gel moisturizer, non-greasy, non-oily, and leaves my skin feeling refreshed. It isn't sticky and it feels cool and refreshing on my skin. The product comes out of a vacuum tube, unlike it's siblings, the Pore Trouble Emulsion and the Pore Tightening Essence, which come out of a traditional "straw-pump" like mechanism. 

What the Official Site Has to Say: 

- Hydro Gel effectively moisurizes skin and controls skin pore troubles. It highly improves skin problems that stem from skin pores step by step.

-Formulated with Total Pore Solution, it effectively treats sin problems by controlling excessive sebum and clears clogged pores.

-The Pore Trouble Technology protects the skin by removing and preventing, excessive sebum and corneous skin dead cells, resulting in a beautiful and revitalized skin.

- With Tea tree oil and raspberry, clove, and parsley, it relieves and lightens skin problems.

-With natural lactococcus ferment extract, it rapidly controls skin problems.  

All in all, I honestly feel this skincare line saved my skin. For almost a decade, I've been waiting in a pimply limbo, waiting for some results to happen. Laneige did more than just give me results, it delivered to me clear skin. =) However, my largest complaint about the company is the way that it packages it's products. I love the pumps, they're hygienic, and I love the simple design...just don't make them out of glass. I've broken two bottles of Laneige already, and it pains me because they were both almost new. That, and Laneige is not cheap. =(( But I'm willing to pay for good skin. Haha, contrary to what this post might suggest, I am not sponsored by them in anyway. =)

You can find Laneige online here at these stores: