sarea: (SIG suit)
Tonight I made ganjang-gejang, raw marinated crab, Korean style. I've had it in restaurants and enjoyed it, and I've even made it once before, but I've never used Maangchi's recipe so I'm giving it a go. I cut my palm on one of the sharp crab shells, but I'll accept it as my due for being a crab killer. :(

I've just finished episode 10 of Answer Me 1997, and I wanted to get some of my thoughts down before I finish the whole thing.

Spoilers! )
sarea: (SIG hair)
[profile] jade_okelani and I are 4 episodes from the end of Goong, and it's enraging her the same way it apparently enraged me the first time I saw it. :)) I say "apparently," because my long-lasting impression of it is one of fondness, possibly because I really loved the two leads, particularly Yoon Eun-hye as the commoner princess. But in reading old LJ entries about the series, I clearly had a poor immediate reaction to it. It's safe to say that Jade feels exactly the same, but that just makes it even more frustrating when the story turns to the line of succession stuff, and the machinations of Lady Hwa Young. The other thing is that the show is entirely too long -- it's 24 episodes, instead of the typical 16, and you really feel it. Not only do they have to fill the airtime with the stuff no one cares about, they're also getting extremely repetitive with the conflicts that Shin and Chae-kyung have to face -- namely all the misunderstandings, with Yul and Hyo-rin trying to get between them. It's a frustrating watching experience, even as much as you're rooting for that HEA and knowing it will come at some point. The question is just: When it happens, will it actually be satisfying after all that?

Jade has agreed to watch Boys Over Flowers as her next K-drama, but now I'm wondering if that's a bad idea on the heels of Goong. BOF is only worth it for the secondary pairing, and while the main pairing is imminently more watchable than the unwatchable stuff in Goong, the overall show is still a little too wacky and based in manga reality than reality reality. As much as I'd love for her to know the joy of Yi-jeong/Ga-eul, it might be for the best if we went to something a little more modern, first.

On my own, I've been watching Answer Me 1997. It comes highly recced by [personal profile] akscully, but I avoided it until now, I think, because I knew it would probably be something I'd want to binge watch once I started. And I was RIGHT. >< :)) I'm really loving it, and I'm bummed that the episodes are only 30 minutes long (other than, apparently, the final 2). And yet it's still only 16 episodes! :( Spoilery comments. )
sarea: (Default)
It's that time of month again! Somehow! Crazy how fast it happens.

At work one of the gals created a "Glam Squad" group for the 6-7 of us who are really into this kind of thing; it's been great to hear everyone's experiences with products and get their feedback on my stuff, too. They all seem much more in the know about specific brands than me.

Onto the boxes! )
sarea: (SIG)
I have been watching a bunch more K-drama. :D

The only problem with watching K-dramas is that I can't multitask; I have no idea WTF is going on if I'm not reading the subtitles. (That said, it kind of explains why I am sometimes lost with my English-speaking shows; I think I am successfully multitasking when in fact I am only moderately successful.)

Anyway, I finished One Fine Day. It was one of the more maddening shows I've ever seen, even though the two leads were good and I liked the main storyline. What I DIDN'T like, however, far overshadowed those things. Spoilers. )

[profile] jade_okelani and I also finished a watch of High School King of Savvy, which is still one of my fave dramas of all time, due almost entirely to how amazing Seo In-guk is in it. <3 Jade liked the overall story of Oh My Ghostess more, but preferred the ending of HSKOS, which manages to have one of the most satisfying endings evar.

In a bid to see which drama we'd watch next, we went through six pilots this weekend. :D We each picked three dramas that interested us, and then we let the Decider Machine determine the order. In that order, we watched... )

On my own, I've also been watching What's Up Fox?, another show from 2006. It would seem that the leap from 2006 to 2007 was HUGE, because from 2007 onward, dramas all seem a step up in terms of writing, filming, directing, etc. Anyway, I've liked this one more than I thought I would. Synopsis and other spoilery things. )
sarea: (Default)
The budae jjigae was an unqualified success! [personal profile] adelagia and I both, surprisingly, enjoyed it. She felt that the American cheese was an unnecessary component, while I felt the same way about the baked beans. I like hot dogs, but wasn't too impressed with what they brought to the stew. You know what was surprisingly good, though? The Spam. :/ It turns out Spam is DELICIOUS. Dang it. It's really salty and full of umami... it's no wonder so many people like it. I've always thought of it as being this disgusting thing, because, well, canned meat -- it was clearly something only desperate people would eat during times of war. WWII was, after all, when it became popular. And it's the name of allllllll our unwanted email! Buuuut I kept hearing about various peoples who enjoyed it. The Hawaiians, for example. And while watching K-dramas, I'd see it here and there (pan-fried slices of Spam were Min-seok's favorite dish in High School King of Savvy). And now I know why! It's got to be horribly bad for you, but it's delicious, that can no longer be denied. Here's a gif of it bubbling merrily away. :D



I was also really happy with the mung bean sprouts. There were SO MANY, OMG. I waited an extra half day to harvest them so that [personal profile] adelagia and I could cook them fresh, but they grow very quickly the last couple of days, so they were SO TALL by then. I'd been keeping them in the oven, then the microwave (you're supposed to keep them out of light) with a wet paper towel over the top, but by Day 6 I just had to keep them out in a dark corner because they were too tall. You're supposed to water them every 3 hours, but I wasn't extremely religious about it; I tried to keep to that schedule (easier to do when on vacation), but just did it when I remembered and always kept the paper towel covering them wet so that they would keep moist that way too. Since they were all packed into the tub I couldn't really tell how tall they really were, or what color they were, etc. They weren't as plump as I might've liked, but I was really pleased by their length. It's weird though that homegrown bean sprouts have their "bean" parts still attached, but when you get them in the grocery store, they're not (whereas soybeans always have the crunchy bean parts intact; that's why my mom prefers those and I prefer mung bean sprouts). Anyway, also because they were so packed in, I couldn't tell how many of them there really were. And OMG there were a LOT. About 4lbs worth. Washing them (so that the green skins would wash away) was the most onerous part of growing my own, honestly! I hadn't expected that!

Pictures! )

All in all, a very cool experiment. It took constant care, but it was extremely simple and easy, no soil or anything required. [personal profile] adelagia and I each made sukjunamul-muchim from a pound of bean sprouts, and put a bunch of them into the budae jjigae, too.

I also made a sandwich that is supposed to be Korean street food; it actually turned out really well. >< It's basically eggs fried with various veggies, then put between two buttered pieces of toast along with sugar, ketchup, and mayo. O.o Sounds disgusting, right? I fully expected it to be, but it was actually really tasty. I didn't use as much sugar as called for, though, and instead of a slice of ham I just cut up some Spam (since I had some) and put it in with the veggie mixture. I tried it with and without American cheese; it tastes good either way. Oh and -- it appears that she uses Kewpie mayo, though she doesn't actually specify. Since it's a dish originating in Asia, given Asia's obsession with Kewpie mayo (and it's not just Asia, but legit chefs everywhere), I can only assume that's the type of mayo used on the streets of Seoul. Since I only had regular mayo on hand, I made my own version of Kewpie mayo by diluting regular mayo with rice vinegar, sugar and MSG. (No, MSG is not evil. And though that fact has been "thoroughly debunked," the conspiracy against it has been too vast to overcome. Same goes for egg yolks and Spam. :P)

I've also been watching more K-dramas... )

I also finished S2 of The Man in the High Castle. I enjoyed the season, particularly as it seems they haven't really given up on the Joe-Julianna thing. Either they want to keep it at a slow burn, which I'm fine with, or maybe they won't end up together at all, which I could also see happening. One quickie spoilery comment. )

My new Apple Watch arrived last night! It's sooooo pretty. I got the one with the rose gold plating and pink/blue band. I'm still figuring it out, but so far I've been happy being able to check my email, and I can tell that having Wunderlist on it is going to be awesome. I chose one of the Minnie Mouse variations as my watchface. :D (Min-seok has a Mickey Mouse watch, so I told [profile] jade_okelani that I was just like him now! LOL.) Her hands point to the time, but since it's digital, she's even dancing a bit and her foot taps out the seconds! So cool. However... I was in my open space office this morning, and I touched the watch somehow -- I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT I DID, there was nothing about this in the instructions and despite all my playing around last night, this NEVER HAPPENED -- and suddenly Minnie Mouse said in her squeaky little voice, "It's 10:30! Good morning!" and everyone stopped typing. So then I was like, "Haha, oops" and could feel myself turning red. :))))) HOW/WHY DID THAT HAPPEN!!! Why you do me like that, Minnie?!
sarea: (Default)
Well I have been a busy little cooking bee! It's amazing how much I can do when I'm not working. Turns out time + energy = motivation! :P Much of what I've made has come from Maangchi, so a lot of Korean stuff. It's all turned out really well, and there's still budae jjigae to look forward to with [personal profile] adelagia!

Over the last week I've made:

- Sigumchi namul
- Tongbaechu kimchi (in addition to the mak kimchi [personal profile] adelagia and I made last weekend)
- Kimchi jjigae
- Sea kelp banchan (as Maangchi suggests, I used the expended kelp from making anchovy broth, stir fried it with a little soy sauce and sugar -- it was actually really good!)
- Ttukbaegi gyeranjjim
- Japgokbap
- Chili (using [profile] corianderstem's recipe, plus added some red wine and chocolate)
- Peach crisp
- a pot of soup (pork and various veggies)
- And I've been growing my own mung bean sprouts (today is Day 4)!

=========

After my annual physical I found out I'm pre-diabetic. :/ My doctor says I should exercise more (natch) and stop eating out so much (which is more because of my mom than me). So my plan is to make big batches of homecooked meals, then freeze a lot of it, so that I don't have to worry about cooking on weeknights if I don't want to. To that end, I've ordered a 7 cubic foot chest freezer that will go in my garage, because my fridge freezer is so small and is constantly bursting at the seams.

=========

Other than K-dramas, I've been watching a couple of other shows:

1) Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy can get a bit much sometimes, but for the most part I really like this one. It's funny and charming, which is one of Tina Fey's singular talents, I suppose -- making something that shouldn't be funny at all somehow humorous.

2) The Man in the High Castle: It's good enough to keep me watching, but not good enough for me to rec wholeheartedly. I really want to like it much more than I do. The problem is that they don't really give you any characters to root for in any real way. They're all kind of superficially drawn and only vaguely interesting. I also don't really ship anything on the show, but I could ship Joe/Julianna if only they'd give us a little more on that front... Instead, they seem to be cooling off on it entirely. So now I'm just kind of like /shrug.
sarea: (mystic beach)
This weekend, [personal profile] adelagia and I made kimchi! :D We are totes ready for when we're dating and/or married to Onew and Seo In-guk, respectively. LOL. (Links go to pics of said celebs, in case you're curious.)

Here's [personal profile] adelagia mixing up our batch. I had a HUGE tub, so there's more kimchi there than it might seem. More than six pounds worth!



I also made buchu (Asian chive) kimchi and dwaejigogi-bokkeum (spicy stir-fried pork), both of which were AMAZING. Soooooooo delicious. I only have a pic of the pork pre-cooking because I was too hungry to remember to take a picture of it after it was cooked. >< Also, I didn't have a pound's worth of pork belly, so subbed some shrimp instead. ALSO DELICIOUS. I think you could easily substitute with firm tofu for a more healthy version... which I may try in the near future. The buchu kimchi is a little too salty, which may or may not be because I didn't have enough chives... I halved the recipe, but I was using older chives, so I had to weed out a lot not-so-good ones. Anyway, I will probably use less fish sauce next time.



=========

One of my Christmas gifts to myself arrived today, and I'm soooooooooo happy. I love American Giant's stuff, especially their Essential Full-Zip Hoodie. I have several of the Classic, as well, but I like the lighter weight and softer feel of the Essential.

ANYWAY... Recently, they came out with a new product, a stadium blanket. I saw the email about it, but wasn't able to actually take a look until two hours later... and they were all sold out already! GRRRRR. A few days later, they said they'd made a limited quantity available again, and I was able to nab two in the only color that remained at that point, a heather navy. I would link it, but it looks like they're totally sold out now, and have even deleted those webpages. Sheesh. Like all their stuff, the blanket is really well made, heavy with quality material, and very warm. <333333

(I was going to link a promo code for 15% off, but it looks like it can only be sent through email. So let me know if you want it! And of course, I get something out of it as well, natch.)

I'm a big blanket person, kind of like Linus. Even when I'm not cold, I like having a blanket on me. It just feels so much cozier! Anyway, I have a lot of blankets.

=========

Watched another episode of Descendants of the Sun. I'm actually still OK with the show, despite the fact that, as expected, the two leads are already "broken up." It helps that I like the male lead, and the female lead isn't super annoying.

=========

I wasn't going to take any time off during the holidays -- other than the days off that everyone gets -- because it's a super quiet time anyway, and I was thinking I'd save my vacation days. Only... it turns out that I have so much vacation saved up (I can only carry over a year's worth, which for me at this point is 200 hours/5 weeks) that I would be forfeiting over 43 hours if I didn't take it! Which would be intolerable. So now I'm going to take Wed/Thu off, as well as all of next week. I still might be sacrificing a few hours, but that's better than 43. I don't work for free, yo.

=========

Speaking of work, we did a white elephant gift exchange... only I had my annual physical during that time so I couldn't actually participate. I contributed a set of R2D2/R2Q5 salt and pepper shakers and an R2D2 measuring cup set. (I may have little use for Star Wars, but I know other people love it, so that stuff makes for good anonymous gifts.) My manager played for me, and he had told me ahead of time what he'd gotten for the exchange (a cast-iron fondue set). Since they were going to allow "me" to go last, thus being able to nab whatever I wanted, I told him that that's what I wanted. I figured it was a safe bet -- I didn't know what random crap other people were going to bring, and I don't really trust my manager to know what I'd really want, so it seemed the most prudent course of action. I still need to get it from him, though.

=========

My December beauty boxes have arrived! I know, it's once a month but seems so much more frequent, doesn't it?

What this month brought! )
sarea: (Default)
Finished another one of my WiP K-dramas last night, Oh My Venus. :D Overall I do recommend it; it has a great cast, and for the better part of the first half, was extremely cute and charming. There was a whole chunk of the middle/end, though, that I really could have done without. The end was good, so at least there's that. It also manages to accomplish something pretty impressive... surprise and charm me with the hero's proposal. It happens in a way that I didn't expect, was unique, and was actually good. It's hard these days to have a proposal on a show that is any of these things, because it's done so much and in so many different ways.

I feel that this earns me the right to start another drama... I just have to decide which Seo In-guk series I want to watch next. Reply 1997, which stars a younger SIG? Hello Monster, where he plays a hot criminal profiler? Or Shopping King Louie, where he plays a chaebol who loses his memory? SO MANY LOVELY CHOICES.

I'm feeling fine now, but have lingering cold symptoms like having to blow my nose and a stupid cough. I have a dental appointment tomorrow AND my annual physical; I reallllly hope it's not going to be an issue.

[personal profile] adelagia and I are supposed to make kimchi over the weekend (rehearsal for being married to our future hot celebrity Korean husbands), and I have purchased a large tub, a fermented vegetables container, fresh squid, and a couple of other things. I'm planning to use regular plastic gloves as opposed to dishwashing gloves, but that should be okay. I've made kimchi once before and did the same thing, even if it was a slightly smaller amount. Then we're going to make tapioca coconut cookies. :D

I accidentally -- YES, IT WAS AN ACCIDENT -- opened [profile] jade_okelani's Christmas gift early, and it's awesome, a Breaking Bad-themed cutting board. I can use it for the first time for the kimchi making!
sarea: (Default)
Seahawks vs Green Bay... I don't... I can't... what an embarrassment. Does the team have an "off" switch when they play games on the road? They're 0-4-1 this season with 2 TDs. TWO. WTF. Our offense is offensive to me. Not that the D was that great this game, either. I realize Earl is gone, and that was always gonna hurt. I expected them to lose this game -- they were playing at Lambeau, they've been shitty on the road, they were coming off a big home game, Green Bay has been trending up, etc. But JFC. Oh and they snapped an 85-game streak of not losing by more than 10 points.

Almost as bad as the team doing poorly was the crapshow they made of my fantasy football games this weekend. I managed to squeak into the playoffs in both leagues with a 7-6 record (go figure; I have a whole different cast and play entirely different people, but still managed to get the exact same record). One game is now an impossibility to win, unless Ezekiel Elliot gets like 70 points ON HIS OWN, while the other one will take monster games from LeGarrett Blount and Julian Edelman tomorrow night, which, given my luck with these things, they will not have. UGH.

I even drafted Eli Manning with the intention of playing him in place of Russell Wilson. I don't how he'll do tonight, but it certainly can't be worse than how RW played today, good gravy. I didn't end up playing Eli because I felt that I was not being fair to RW or the team coming off a good game, and I would feel really bad if Eli was horrible (very real possibility) and RW was amazing, for multiple reasons.

Next season, I am not drafting ANY Seahawks in my fantasy football leagues unless it would be absolutely ridiculous not to (like the next SEA player is miles above the next-best). It's too fucking stressful. Every week, I end up not playing FF the smartest way because I have to consider stupid shit like "feeling guilty" if RW has a good game. If I have no Seahawks on the roster, it won't matter who I put in; I just have to pick the best players, and the Seahawks doing well or poorly won't affect my FF games (well, other than when my opponent has a SEA player, of course).

==============

I was felled this last week by some kind of cold or flu or whatever the hell. This one was brutal. When I got sick in New York, it was like a little baby cold compared to this one. That one I was completely over with in less than two weeks, and never even got to the really bad symptoms. This time has been the mother of all viruses. (And how annoyed am I to get sick twice in such quick succession??) I'm still not fully over it, but am on the road to recovery. A few days ago I was like, LET ME DIE, I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE. I don't even know how/where I got this thing. And if it's the flu, eff you flu shot for not covering this strain.

Oh, and even better? Aunt Flo came to visit. So I had to deal with that on top of body aches and hacking my lungs out.

On a more positive side note, have you heard of Thinx? It's period underwear, to put it bluntly. It's my second month using them (I have a full cycle set), and it's official, I love them. [profile] jade_okelani is a fan as well. You can read this article to learn more; I've read several like it where women tried to use them as their ONLY source of protection, and I think they're nuts. Or their cycles must be quite different from mine.

More TMI. Seriously, I am very frank in here, so don't click if you don't wanna know. )

==============

I have accomplished the feat of finishing two of my many WIP K-dramas. I finished High School: Love On, which was okay, and Coffee Prince, which was better than okay but had the most boring and annoying side pairing of all time. I've also watched a few more episodes of Oh My Venus, which has gotten to a super angsty part, and I have no idea where they're going to go from here. It's quite disappointing, actually, that it started out so lighthearted and cute and has now brought us to this. Sigh. Henry Lau is still the best part of the drama. Also? Much of it seems to hinge on the viewer finding So Ji-sub brutally attractive. I mean, he IS attractive; he's just not THAT hot (to me).

Because of finishing off two of them, I allowed myself to start a new one -- "Hello My Teacher" aka "Biscuit Teacher and Star Candy." It stars Gong Yoo and Gong Hyo-jin. Gong Yoo is the primary male lead from Coffee Prince that I ended up really loving, and Gong Hyo-jin is the female lead from Master's Sun. She's another one of those actresses who gets a lot of work and critical accolades, and I don't understand why. To me she's basically Korean Maggie Gyllenhaal. Anyway...

Synopsis: Na Bori is a 25-year-old woman who desperately wants to be a teacher at the high school she was expelled from, so that she can work with her high school crush, young art teacher Ji Hyun Woo. However, the only thing that enables her to get the coveted job is by signing a contract to essentially babysit Park Tae In, a 20-year-old troublemaker who starts attending the high school, of which he quickly becomes the king.

I'm sure I found it when looking stuff up on High School King of Savvy. Anyway, Gong Yoo plays the troublemaking high school student. :D I've only seen the pilot, and so far I'm "meh" on it. It seems to have all the stereotypical characters you'd expect of a K-drama, as well as flight-of-fancy fight sequences and such. I suppose such things should be expected, given that it aired in 2005. The content and the format (it's in 4:3 aspect ratio, *shudder*) shows its age. I'll give it a few more episodes to see if Gong Yoo and Gong Hyo-jin can somehow work their magic.
sarea: (stiles faceplant)
It snowed this morning! Only for about an hour and it didn't stick for more than another hour after that, but still... it was quite pretty, especially with all the trees in my "backyard." Next time I'll try and make a gif of it. :D

All right, it's time to update y'all on the various K-dramas I'm in the middle of. I've been giving my DramaFever subscription a workout, that's for sure!

It's funny, not too long ago, I remember saying in a post that I really loved my Chromecast, while my coworker preferred her Amazon Fire Stick, and I couldn't understand why. Now I do! If you use a subscription service, like Netflix or DF or whatever, and you have a Fire Stick, it's super convenient to watch it natively from the FS app, without having to bother with casting. It's a nice interface, if not extremely intuitive, but it comes with a remote control and you can also use your phone as a remote. I like it so much now that I even bought another one, and the latest version comes with Alexa voice controls, so it's even better! Chromecast is still better though if you want to cast random stuff from a browser... basically anything that isn't centralized enough to have a native app.

Anyway... on to the dramaz!! )
sarea: (earl thomas)
Wow. Words can't express how sad I am. Earl Thomas, my fave Seahawk, had to leave tonight's game early due to a broken tibia, and he tweeted that he's considering retirement. Honestly, he should do whatever's right for him... I love watching him play and there are certainly more important things in life than football. However, I also know how much he loves the game, and for him to say that, it probably hurts him more than it hurts me, which is what makes me sad. He's so passionate and crazy and I love that about him. I also think that whatever chances the Seahawks had in the playoffs just went down dramatically. They just aren't the same team without him; that's the plain, unvarnished truth. Look how horrific they were last week without him. And now the most important part of the Legion of Boom might not be back (certainly not for this season). :( Get well soon, Earl!!

I had a pretty productive day. It really helps when the Seahawks game is in the evening, because then I have all day to do what I need to do, and then watching the game is like a reward. When it's in the morning or middle of the day, it not only takes out that chunk of daylight, it also can affect my mood for the rest of the day, depending on how they do! Sometimes I'm too depressed to do anything than sit around like a slug!

Anyway, so I:

1) Made Pad Thai! I used Pailin's recipe from Hot Thai Kitchen (watch the video). She's like the Maangchi of Thai food. Other than fish sauce and peanuts, sooooooooo many of the ingredients were not a part of my pantry. It was worth it though; home run on the Pad Thai! I was eager to try her recipe, because a number of years ago, I had authentic Pad Thai -- which wasn't red, from ketchup or tomato paste or paprika or whatever it is that American Thai restaurants put in it to make it that color -- and it was so amazing that I'd always wanted to have it again. Making it seemed super arduous, and yet it's been surprisingly/depressingly difficult to find a Thai restaurant that actually makes authentic Thai food that doesn't cater to American tastes. The best place I've found in Seattle (actually, recommended to me by a Thai coworker) is Thaiku. But it's alllll the way in Phinney Ridge, so I can't get there regularly. Most Thai restaurant food is way too sweet for me. I mean, Thai food should be a little sweet. It's got a very well-rounded flavor profile, where everything is supposed to have elements of salty, sweet, sour, spicy, etc. But sweetness seems to be the predominant flavor of most Thai food in restaurants. :/ ANYWAY, after getting Pailin's recipe book and watching her video, I realized that Pad Thai wasn't hard at all; it was just a matter of getting the right ingredients. It was simple after that!

2) Made Vietnamese spring rolls! Okay, so this I've done before. It's also really easy and a matter of having the rice paper and all that. What I hadn't done before was make the peanut sauce that usually comes with them, from scratch. I made both nước chấm (a fish sauce-based sauce) and the peanut sauce... surprisingly -- though really, it shouldn't have been -- the peanut sauce was far more savory than I'm used to from restaurants, and it was delicious. I was a little meh on the homemade nước chấm; the recipe I used didn't call for any lemon or lime juice and I think it needed that element.

3) Built a cat washroom! :)) WTF? you might be thinking. Well, this was one of those things I ran across during Black Friday, and I was like, omg, this is brilliant! Must have! It hides the litter box, and I also bought a really good litter mat to put in it to help with not having bits of litter scattered all over the laundry room. At the same time, I also got a Litter Genie, which I wish I'd known about before. I always have issues with litter bags, and this thing supposedly even masks the smell of the litter, so bonus if that's true. The only problem is... it's wider than I expected. (This is what comes of not measuring before you buy something.) I was originally going to put it in front of the washer/dryer, with the Litter Genie and box of litter in the "hidden corner" next to the dryer. It would have been a nice setup, because from the doorway you wouldn't have been able to see any cat litter paraphernalia at all! But it juts out further than expected, so there's danger of hitting your hand on a sharp corner when loading the dryer, which means now I've put the washroom in the corner (with just enough room for Jaime to get in and out), with the other stuff exposed like they were before. :/ And now it's going to be (even more of) a pain clean the litter box, because I'll have to pull out the bench in order to open the door to pull out the litter box. >< Me and my great ideas...

I also woke with a sore-ish throat. It's not like my typical sore throats, it just... feels funny. Don't know what that's about, but I hope it clears up by tomorrow. :/
sarea: (Default)
So first things first... in case there was ANYONE out there who was actually waiting for the second part of the High School King of Savvy giftset, I decided to just add it to the original post, because really, it just all belongs together.

Next, I should be talking about the other K-dramas I'm in the middle of, right? Well I hate to be predictable, so NO! I am not going to run through those right now! Instead I'm going to talk about cosmetics and skin care and all that, because I have SO MUCH STUFF NOW due to Sephora's annual VIB sale and also Black Friday.

First, here are my beauty boxes from November: Birchbox, Ipsy, and Sephora Play! )

I got a ton of stuff during Sephora's VIB sale, most of which I have not yet used. I did try out Urban Decay's Sheer Liar, recommended by [personal profile] akscully, and I LOVE it. It's in their new formula, and I don't know how it compares with the old, but it works for me.

Then, over Black Friday weekend, I went to the Etude House site, and OMG. Their prices are reasonable to begin with, and there were a bunch of things on sale, and you could take an EXTRA 40% off on top of that! I'd practically lose money NOT to take advantage! :P Anyway, so yeah, I just piled a bunch of stuff -- mostly lipstick -- into my cart and hit purchase. I have since been contacted and told that one of the items isn't available, so they could refund everything, or reorder everything minus that item, and refund me the difference. I said I wanted to do the latter, but I haven't heard from them since, and it's already been 3 days. WTF Etude House? Are you sending me my piles of makeup or not?
sarea: (Default)
I've been watching a LOT of K-dramas, and it's a good thing, too, because that totally helped me get through the loooooong flights between Seattle and Hong Kong.

I'm embarrassed, though, because I have started soooooooooooooo many of them, but have finished very few. I'm not sure why that is... it's not that they're not good; it's just, I get distracted, and I feel like trying a different genre after a few eps, I guess. Very few dramas enthrall me from beginning to end, where I don't want to do anything but watch that drama. It's the same with books! I also tend to find myself in the middle of several books, rather than concentrating on one, unless it's a book I just can't put down.

The good news is that most of what I've been watching has been good; I haven't quit any of them in disgust. :))

Originally, I was going to briefly go through what I'm watching, but I found myself going on and on about one of them -- and I realized, given how much I loved it, it really does deserve its own entry. So here we are.

I'm breaking this up into two entries, because I wanted to share one of my favorite scenes, so this is GIF-heavy. Part two will likely be posted tomorrow.

High School King of Savvy might be my new fave K-drama of all time. )
sarea: (Default)
I've started watching Hidden Identity, another K-drama. It's like Ocean's 11 crossed with Mission Impossible crossed with The Departed (because for at least the first few episodes, the lead is a plant in the bad guy's organization).

It's pretty fun and entertaining to watch, and it doesn't hurt that Kim Bum is in it. He joins an elite, off-the-books arm of law enforcement. He's ex-SEAL (Korea's version of it) and ex-SWAT. He is suuuuuuuper hot in it, because he's a badass fighter, tortured by the loss of his girlfriend (of course). There are a number of scenes that gratuitously show off what a badass he is. :)) And there's definitely a gratuitous shot of his physique. We never saw his naked chest in Boys Over Flowers, but I believe this hard-muscled version of him is fairly new. (Check out this brief shower scene. Oh my.)

I don't know if there's any romance on this show; there's a female agent, but that doesn't mean they'll get involved. In fact, I hope they don't... this isn't a show where I need any romance.

Some of the scenarios are kind of silly, which I found to be the case in Signal, too... I'm not sure if it's that I'm being too hard on it, or if I'm just used to the "realism" of American shows (meaning, not that they are more realistic, but I might be more used to their form of realism. Or, really are just more realistic. :)) ) Here's an example: )

*******

While rewatching Oh My Ghostess, I was inspired to make congee. See, it's set in and around a restaurant (the hero is a chef/restaurant owner), and one of the things that's made as "comfort food" is cabbage congee. Traditionally, congee is made with protein-based items, so it sounded kind of weird to me. But then I thought, why not expand my idea of what congee can be? Then Jo Jung-suk did something that made me REALLY inspired to make it.

There's a part where he has water and a white something in a blender. First time through, I idly wondered what it was, but quickly forgot about it. On rewatch, I found myself wondering about it again -- and then I realized... it was rice! And then I was like, ohmygod... blitzing rice in a blender to make congee... BRILLIANT. One of the hardest things about making homemade congee is that it's really hard to get it to the consistency of restaurant congee. I've been able to do it in a slow cooker, but that's cooking it for like 16 hours. But what if using a blender is able to shorten that time?

And guess what? IT WORKED. It didn't happen instantly, like it did on the show, but it only took like an hour or so of cooking on the stove. The consistency isn't EXACTLY like when you make it with un-blitzed rice, it's a lot smoother, but it's still creamy and luscious. In fact, if you blitzed it a shorter amount of time (and maybe don't use a Vitamix like I did), you could probably achieve a similar result with a faster cooking time.

Also, I made it like on the show, with carrots, onion, ground beef, and cabbage. Which is the WEIRDEST-sounding congee ever. But guess what? It's delicious. HA! Just goes to show, trying new things, always a plus.
sarea: (Default)
I have found an awesome lip balm. Well, Smashbox calls it a "gloss," but to me it's more of a balm. While waiting at the gate for my flight to NYC, I reached for my lip balm only to realize that my makeup bag wasn't in my purse. (I feared I had forgotten it entirely, but luckily it was just that I had packed it into my checked bag.) My lips already felt dry and I couldn't stand the idea of a 5-hour flight that way, so I went to Duty Free, which was just across the way, and bought the first lip gloss I saw, Smashbox's O-Gloss. I didn't read the box or anything; I just saw the word "gloss" and went for it. It was kind of expensive, $26, but beggars and all that. I felt kind of ripped off, though, because it was just a clear, transparent gloss that didn't seem special in any way; I thought to myself that I could have just bought some Vaseline to accomplish the same thing.

I got up a couple of times to use the airplane bathroom (I wish I could hold it, but this is why I always get aisle seats whenever possible ><), and I was kind of mystified by the fact that I did not look like shit. In fact, it looked like I had, if not exactly makeup on, then at least some kind of natural color/glow that surprised me, given it was a red eye flight and I was really tired. It was only later, after conversing with [personal profile] akscully, that the truth was revealed... O-Gloss ISN'T just plain gloss. I don't know how it works, but the description of it on Smashbox's site says that it will "read your personal skin chemistry and transform into the perfect customized shade." How crazy is that? Even crazier is that it works. It ISN'T lipstick. If you want actual color/shade on your lips, this isn't that. This just somehow gives your lips a natural pink hue without actually being a color. I don't know how else to describe it. If your lips are naturally pink, then lucky you, you can just put on some balm and be on your way. But my lips, if I don't do anything to them, are super pale... sometimes to the point where they almost look purple, they're so bloodless. It's awful. Yet I don't always want to actually wear lipstick, so this is the perfect solution!

=========

I'm rewatching Oh My Ghostess. :D Only this time I don't understand a lot of what's going on, because my mom prefers to read Chinese subtitles, and really she's the one who's watching. She's enjoying it because it's so funny, she says. I'm going to have to watch it again with English subtitles.

=========

I'm also nearly done with Coffee Prince. I have 2-3 episodes left. I've enjoyed it for the most part, but man, much of it was a slog. I just don't think the gender-identity-confusion trope is for me. The only part I like about it is that the hero (it's always the hero) throws aside all convention and recognizes he just loves the person. But everything else about it is just super unappealing/tiresome, especially because in the end, she turns out to be a girl, so they get to have their cake and eat it too, rendering all the angst pointless.

More specific, spoilery commentary. )

=========

There's a show over on Viki that I want to check out, Shopping King Louie. The premise is actually very close to the fan drama Love Is, which was a Soeulmate production. Set in an alternate history where Korea still has a monarchy, Kim Bum is the crown prince who was raised abroad and doesn't want the responsibilities of the life he was born into... he runs away and is taken in by Kim So Eun, who has no idea who he really is, and has money/love problems of her own. It's super cute and well done, but unfortunately not finished. :/ Anyway, Shopping King Louie is exactly this premise, only the male lead (Seo In-guk) is a chaebol instead of crown prince, and he has amnesia instead of deliberately running away.

Twelve of 16 eps have aired so far, so I'm just going to wait until it's done.
sarea: (Default)
I've decided that my next drama is going to be Coffee Prince. I've watched 1.5 episodes, and I like it so far. It's definitely a little dated at this point, considering it aired in 2007, but it was massively popular at the time, and I like Yoon Eun-hye. I'm pretty impressed with how convincingly she's playing a tomboy who could be mistaken as a guy, considering she's one of the prettiest K-drama actresses ever, imho. I mean, to go from playing a princess-to-be in Goong to a tomboy who's constantly mistaken for a dude is a pretty big 180.

======

Got my Sephora box for October. I like it, but don't love it. I actually would have preferred their more generic box rather than the one they customized for me, but I still like it more than I've liked my Ipsy boxes.

What was inside. )
sarea: (Default)
It's over. :( Watched the finale of Oh My Ghostess last night, and now there’s no moooooooooore. Waaaaaah. (I’ve gone ahead and ordered the DVD set from Amazon, if only to make a bunch of gifs. There’s a dearth of them on Tumblr, weird considering how popular the show was.) It’s always hard to read/watch something you love and know it’s about to end… harder still when you’ve seen two such awesome shows in a row. I mean, what are the chances I can make it three?

Then again, I did manage to watch a bunch of great movies in a row, so I suppose there’s that. Also, I always meant to go back to finish Master’s Sun, so I suppose I can do that. I can’t remember now why I stopped watching that one. I think it might be because I was actually watching that in real time and it got to a point where I wasn’t enjoying it that much, so I just stopped following it. That’s the danger of watching stuff in real time, because when a drama loses a step or has a slow episode, it’s much harder to get over the hump. If you have more episodes in front of you, you can just keep going and another ep might capture your interest again. Master’s Sun also suffers from the fact that I’m not really into the male lead. I don’t even remember Seo In-guk in it, and he’s apparently the second male lead. He had an amusing cameo in the OMG finale, so that might be what’s sparking my interest in watching it again.

It’s possible that more than anything, I’m going to miss the antics of everyone who worked in the Sun Restaurant kitchen. Those guys were the best!

Spoilers! )

========

In beauty stuff news, I’ve purchased an Air Repair kit. I just wanted the moisturizer, but apparently they really only do travel-sized things, and the kit had the full-size moisturizer plus a bunch of other stuff for only $10 more or something. I know it’s a little ironic that the first thing that I actually bought after trying a sample from the beauty boxes was something that I initially pooh-poohed, but I just love that moisturizer. I still don’t understand how it can feel so thick yet go on so light, and it smells like lemon verbena.
sarea: (troy and annie)
You guuuuuys I am so in love with this show!!!!! It's like, everything a romcom should be. <333333 I was afraid of it being like Master's Sun, which was a little too heavy on the ghost element for me. Oh My Ghostess is much, much more light hearted, and the ghost stuff is at a bare minimum -- it only actually matters in the context of main characters, rather than as an active plot device that requires the involvement of other ghosts. That probably makes no sense unless you've seen them both, lol.

I am so, so, SO into Kwak Si-yang, who plays Joon. Joon is possibly the most perfect secondary rival ever in terms of Asian dramas, in that he isn't really one. He just shows up from time to time to be fucking awesome. He's super good looking, aloof, perceptive, and kind to the heroine. I just love him. I don't think it's ever happened before that I wished the heroine would be more involved with the secondary love interest, but that is definitely the case here, because she's adorable, he's adorable, and they are adorable together. That said, maybe I feel that way BECAUSE he's not an obstacle to the main pairing; in fact, he ships it himself! Also, it might not even be accurate to call him a secondary love interest, because it's not clear that he actually thinks about her that way... but he's sort of set up as one just because he's so hot and has at least minimal 1:1 interactions with the heroine.

That is not to say that I don't love and appreciate the actual hero. I TOTALLY do. In fact, I'm a little surprised by how much I like Jo Jang-suk. But he's cute, he has great comedic timing and expressions, and his tender looks are great too. And you know what's most awesome of all? He is a fantastic on-screen kisser. :))) I know that's probably a weird thing to flag, but if there's one thing about Asian dramas that's a little less than satisfying it's the kissing. The girls are all so wooden and statuesque, and even when they aren't, it looks super awkward, because the guys try too hard or something. So let me give credit to both Jo Jang-suk and Park Bo-young, because their kissing looks super natural and hot. :D

Now I'm getting into spoilery territory. )
sarea: (Default)
I finished Signal! It was excellent. Of course, I was expecting it to be, so anything less would have been a disappointment. ;) I now have a little crush on Lee Je-hoon. I'm going to try that period drama he's in, Secret Door, which he received a number of acting accolades for. Actually, now that I'm looking, apparently he's won a bunch of acting awards in general, so I'll probably check out some of his other stuff, too.

Random thoughts )

Since I now have a DramaFever subscription, I've started watching other shows in my queue. I started Oh My Ghostess, which has really high ratings on DF, and my Korean co-worker and [personal profile] akscully both rec it as well. I was hooked within the first 30 min!! It's AWESOME. Signal was so emotionally intense; this show is like eating a big, delicious slice of cake. I love the lead actress (I first saw her in a movie to or from Atlanta, called , about a budding journalist. I wasn't sure what I thought about the lead actor from his picture, but in live action, I like him. In terms of the ghost stuff, it's really minimal, though there are a couple of really minor parts that might be alarming to those who are sensitive to such things. :)) Ahem.

I watched two episodes last night, and I CANNOT WAIT to watch more. It's soooooo fun/good.

Here's the premise and further thoughts. )

Now that I'm using DF more often, I'm also seeing the benefits of Amazon Fire vs Chromecast. Amazon Fire is WAY better for this purpose. Amazon has a DF app and a remote control, so that's all I need to watch. With Chromecast, I have to have my phone or iPad in order to fire up the app from there, which means I have to have one of them with me when watching. But there doesn't seem to be any way to fast forward or rewind or do any of those functions, which is frustrating. And then sometimes, doing the casting goes awry, and it either only casts audio with no picture, or the subtitles don't show up, or whatever. There are none of those issues using Amazon Fire and the native DF app.

Profile

sarea: (Default)
sarea

July 2017

S M T W T F S
      1
2345678
9101112131415
1617 181920 2122
23242526272829
3031     

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Jul. 22nd, 2017 06:51 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios