Monday, March 20, 2017

Life | Happy 2nd Adoptaversary Sophie!

Two years ago I was on the phone with a friend walking through PetSmart and passing by the adoption center in the back of the store in Tampa, FL like I always did. 

Except this time a tiny little girl caught my attention and the moment I saw her I told my friend I had to call him back. I poked at the window and tried to find a worker who would let me meet her. 

I've passed plenty of animals up for adoption and my mom rescues stray cats; but never had I ever had the urge to MEET one of the animals.

The worker let me back there and they pulled Sophie out from her cubbie and set her on the floor. She was a bit cautious and super curious. I freakin loved her. I don't know why or what it was about her but I just didn't want to leave her there. They told me she's been kept there for 3 years and no one wanted her because she was 10 years old and only 5 pounds. Everyone was afraid she was a sickly cat or there was something wrong with her. You can't tell in the picture above very well but her tail is also broken. I'm not sure what happened but close to the tip of her tail it's broken. So when she's happy she whips her tail but the tip of her tail goes a different direction. I personally think it's quirky and cute. The lady who ran the adoption agency that found Sophie doesn't know much about her either just that she was in the pound and they were gonna put her down.

I'm glad they didn't.

I'm glad that lady found her.

I'm glad I stumbled on her when I did.

It took me about 3 weeks to be able to afford to adopt Sophie. I had a gofundme page up and everything. Two of my friends helped me adopt her and for that I'm forever thankful. I visited Sophie once a week until I was able to take her home, I remember looking forward to seeing her every week even if it was just for ten minutes.

In the two years I've had her company we've moved 3 times. She's been my best friend through everything. She was there licking the tears from my face when I'd cry and she's nibble on my hand and wake me up when I've been sleeping for too long. She's cuddle buddy and she's got the most quirkiest personality. 

Happy 2nd Adoptaversary Sophie!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Reading | Book Review; Cinder by Marissa Meyer

I normally post my book reviews on Readarella; but lately I've been feeling like book review bloggers aren't a thing like they use to be in 2009 when I first started. I feel like it's moved on to book vloggers which isn't a bad thing since I use to post video reviews too and into bookstagramers which I feel I'm at a disadvantage at sometimes because I buy typically digital books and while you can create a cool flat lay with a Kindle or your phone I feel like having a physical book works much better. Plus I'm not savvy on how to make a flat lay and I'm limited on what to use for props. Maybe when I move into my next place I'll actually set up bookcases and do all that flat lay stuff.

But I wanted to post a review anyway since I've gotten back into reading recently \o/.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The Lunar Chronicles #1
Release Date: January 3rd, 2012
Find It: Amazon | GoodReads | B&N
Sixteen-year-old Cinder is considered a technological mistake by most of society and a burden by her stepmother. Being cyborg does have its benefits, though: Cinder's brain interference has given her an uncanny ability to fix things (robots, hovers, her own malfunctioning parts), making her the best mechanic in New Beijing. This reputation brings Prince Kai himself to her weekly market booth, needing her to repair a broken android before the annual ball. He jokingly calls it "a matter of national security," but Cinder suspects it's more serious than he's letting on. 
Although eager to impress the prince, Cinder's intentions are derailed when her younger stepsister, and only human friend, is infected with the fatal plague that's been devastating Earth for a decade. Blaming Cinder for her daughter's illness, Cinder's stepmother volunteers her body for plague research, an "honor" that no one has survived. 
But it doesn't take long for the scientists to discover something unusual about their new guinea pig. Something others would kill for.

I'll be honest, I read Cinder like last year-ish but since I continued on with the series I felt weird not reviewing this title first.

Cinder is about a cyborg named Cinder who works as a mechanic in New Bejing. I honestly didn't think I would be interested in this read for several reasons --- it takes place in a future world. It's about a cyborg and Cinderella was never really my favorite fairy tale. But as the story progressed, I found myself OBSESSED with this world. With who Cinder is and the people that make up her life. Yeah she still had that awful step mother but there were so many twists the author put on this story! Plus, it was a re-telling so I had to pick it up!

Cinder still had the two step sisters although one of them was one of her closest friends and I think that made this story that much better. Though the evil one could seriously suck it, in my opinion she was just as awful as her mother! Which is crazy because hello, her sister obviously didn't have a problem with Cinder. But whatever. Also there was Iko, lovely lovely Iko who I immediately fell in love with --- she's their household android assistant and she has such a big personality for something that should had been such a small role. 

The story of The Lunars and of their dreadful Queen was also an interesting twist to put on this story and this world. 

I remember at the time I read this I was totally smitten with the way Cinder and Kai interacted though I can't remember exactly why. But Kai in his own wasn't bad for the guy in the story. He had his own problems and his own things going on so while Cinder played a part in his days and in his story, his story was independent enough that he stood out as his own character in my mind and I kind of like that. Too many times the boys in YA books (especially in fantasy and paranormal) get so blended in with the girl in the book that there really isn't much to them when you think back on it.

The huge plot twist in this story did take me by surprise and it drove me to read the rest of the books (and it still is)! I wish I could talk about it but I hate including spoilers in my reviews, maybe I'll rewrite this review on Readarella and include all of my thoughts there :) who knows.

I absolutely enjoyed this read a lot more than I thought I would had and I'm so glad I decided to give it a go, after like 4 years of it sitting in my TBR pile. 

Here's to the rest of the series!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Food | 1102 Bubble Tea & Bites

I need to do more foodie reviews so I thought why not start with last weekend?

I wish I had taken more pictures of the shops and things but hey there's always room for improvement, right?!

Normally before I head to Texas (or anywhere actually) I make a list of places I want to try and we try and squeeze in most of what's on that list. Sometimes we get to all of them, sometimes we don't. But foodie adventures are always my favorite.

1102 Bubble Tea and Bites was pretty high up on my list.

I've been seeing Instagram posts of Bubble Tea places in SoCal being served in light bulbs! I thought this idea was so freakin cool. Then I find a place in Arlington, TX that does this! I scooped out their Instagram hashtag and their Yelp page. 

We got there on a Saturday night and it was kinda raining but not too bad. Walking in was such a nice experience on its own. The shop is brightly lit and they have low tables for you to sit at with friends or family members and play games. There's also normal tables where people with laptops were getting some work done and everything about this place was just cute.

We started with a Coffee type of Cheesecake (left) and a Greet Tea Matcha Yogurt (right). The Cheesecake was obviously a lot thicker and richer than the Green Tea, we liked them both. Also, can we talk about how cute the packaging for these jars are? I know it's just twine but the extra effort makes the difference!

Also Bubba set up this shot for me.

It turns out the light bulb tea only came in like 4 basic flavors, none of which sounded interesting to me at the time. I opted for something else and the girl behind the counter was nice enough to give me a sample of the Black Tea base versus the Oolong Tea base to choose from. Both were good and sweet and I'm not a big Black Tea or Oolong Tea fan but these were perfection. I loved them both! She also let Bubba try two different "toppings" to put into his own drink. It was nice of her to let us try before we decided what to get!

I ended up with the Tiramisu Milk Tea with Flan (which I've never tried but always wanted to in a drink) with the Black Tea Base and Bubba got the Blue Ocean Italian Soda with Mochi. 


The Italian Soda tasted better if you mixed it up with the whipped cream but I love how pretty his drink was. I'm tempted to try the other Italian Soda's at some point! Maybe I'll make a blog series out of it! 

The Tiramisu Milk Tea was amazing and the Flan added an extra bit of flavor to it as well. I really enjoyed this drink! And in case you were wondering, I got it with the Black Tea base. I may try it with the Oolong next time and see how it differs from each other.

I am definitely coming back here again! 

*Sadly you're not able to keep the cups

Friday, March 10, 2017

Travel | Fort Worth Trip; March 2017

It's hard to believe this may be my last trip to Dallas/Fort Worth because the next time I'm in the state I'll be a resident there \o/ I'm happy I was able to get the things I needed to get done in the short amount of time I had this this last time so whew on that. So relieved! And so excited! I'm sad to be leaving Florida; it's been my home for the last 5 years and it's the first place I made a place my home on my own. I've had so many good memories and good times and just usual's here but like I did with Cali as well, all things must come to an end. It's not like I'll never be back, I'll only be a 2 hour flight away! Plus I can't deny that I'm super stoked to start a new adventure... somewhere that's more foodie/Asian food friendly at that!

This is so out of order lol! But the first day I was there; the flight went great. I slept through most of it thankfully. Bubba took me to get Ihop after he picked me up (it wasn't awkward at all seeing each other again, I went straight into constantly hugging him and poking him) and we had breakfast. Then we stopped by a Target to find the TsumTsum Pastel Parade's which weren't at that one we were at but we ended up picking up various other things instead lol! We're such kids it's kind of ridiculous. Also introduced him to my Strawberry Refresher drink that he liked, yay! Went into PetSmart to find Sophie a house and we found some fuzzy ones that we might be able to pull the bottom pillow out of and replace with a scratching pad since she prefers/massively uses those. I'll have to see if I can find a circle one or something. But at least we found something! It might not be seasonally like the box house she had before but it's okay! 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Life | Hello March

credit: google images

Third month into the year and.... I feel like I haven't really accomplished much. Ever feel like your life is just going at SUCH A SLOW PACE? Yeah, I don't know what my end game is or what I'm looking for in life I just know it's going so slowly. Yeah, that doesn't make sense. Roll with me here.

February was such a shit month that it makes me almost not want to even bother with goals this month... almost

Maybe instead I'll try to keep things simple.

  • Find an apartment
    This one is kind of important for various reasons. I'm so afraid I won't find a place I like and it's stressing me out! But even if I don't, I'm sure I'll figure something out...
  • Drink more water
    This is one Penny has been getting on to me about a lot lately. The stress from recently has been making me sick and giving me headaches so I can see why he's so worried.
  • Make videos
    Notice I didn't say "vlog" this time, though I do want to vlog more as well... but I really do need to make more videos, period.
  • Post 2-3 times a day on Instagram
    I've been trying to (as always) up my followers (if you'd like to follow me you can do so here #shamelessplug) and I'm finding posting throughout the day helps... kinda.
  • Meditate
    Because I literally need to do start doing this again.
    Don't stop... believing... HOLD ON TO THAT FEELING.
  • Cancel subscription boxes
    Because let's be real Hazel, you don't need all of those.
  • Pay more attention to Penny
    Because we get that stress and shit gets in the way but that doesn't mean the poor guy has to be second in line to social media and thangs. Just... give him your undivided attention sometimes, yeah?
  • Blog more
    Stop letting stress and dumb people/situations stop you from doing you. You've got reviews to write, things to say, anger to let out! Blog it out!
  • Put more of ME in my blog posts, videos and social media
    I'm always scared of letting ME show too much. Like you have to be this type of blogger for people to like you and this is something I've struggled with since I started YouTubeing in 2009. But if I'm not ME on my own platforms then... who am I? People will love me or not like me regardless, it's better to be not liked for who I completely am than liked for someone I'm not.
    Really. I usually throw my hair in a bun when I wake up and bum around which is fine, but how can I FEEL good if I don't LOOK good? Yeah I stole that from Penny, though he doesn't say that much anymore.
  • Prep for Easter/Spring posts and videos
    Because things like this seem to always get away from you... plan these things ahead of time.
So here's to March!

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Life | Monthly Recap; February 2017

If I had to describe February in one word it would definitely be distracted.

It didn't turn out the way I had wanted and once again I let my emotions take over and make me lose sight on some goals I had this month (as you can see I didn't post any blog posts or videos this month which yes, I am kicking myself about... I'm hoping to do better for Easter/Spring). The reason being... remember how I said I was going to Texas this month to go apartment hunting? Well, it seems as though I had booked my flight one day earlier than I was suppose to and because of all the stressors going on it slipped my mind to check before the departure date like I normally would so I didn't realize I was a no show for my flight until THAT NIGHT meaning all that packing and preparing I was doing that day was for nothing. So yeah, I missed my flight, wasn't refunded the money and I had to pay a $100 penalty for cancelling my hotel reservation "too late". I was pretty disappointed with myself for a LONG time. I still kinda am but what can you do. I was suppose to spend my Valentine's Day with Bubba but since I wasn't able to get to Texas I went online shopping at home by myself instead.

In the same week my ex came and got my phone and PS4 which I didn't mind giving either things back as long as it meant he would stop trying to contact me. He was pretty much abusive our whole relationship and I'd rather not have him contact me, ever again. Though he's the type to pretend like things were all good and "be nice" as long as it benefits him. One of those people. I'd rather just stay away from all of that and him. 

So yeah, that's how my optimistic February went down hill --- fast.

Let's take a look at the goals I had for February in this post.

G O A L S   R E C A P

--- I did read 4 books this month \o/ I'm pretty obsessed with The Lunar Chronicles right now
--- I managed to finish a bit of products and hadn't even noticed
--- I found maybe one or two favorites this month
--- Cancelled a bit of subscription services I didn't really want/need anymore
--- Got over 550 Instagram followers.... FINALLY (I've been sitting at 550 for a year with all the following/unfollowing people do)
--- Tried 2 new restaurants; Planet Hollywood (since they revamped the menu we're calling this "new") and Paddlefish (again another revamp so we're calling it "new")

I'm seriously struggling right now to come up with goals I had achieved this month. Oh bother! Ah well, you can't fit too much into a short month anyway, I suppose.

That said I will be re-attempting to go apartment hunting some time in the following month (don't worry I'll MAKE SURE to book the RIGHT day this time), the little break away from Orlando will be nice. Spring is coming up and the weather here is reflecting that which is always nice, I love Spring and Fall in Orlando the most. Easter is one of my favorite holidays and I'm so ready to deck out as much of my apartment and room in pretty pastel colors as I can. I'm so lucky my roommate doesn't care about the crazy decorations or whatever I put up. She kinda just rolls with it. So yeah.

While I did get my Canon S90 camera back (finally) I've grown pretty attached to my Sony WX300. And I'm thinking of upgrading the Canon to a G9 instead.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Life | Hello February

Can we talk about how it's the second month of the year already?

I'm creeping up closer to seeing Penny again and I swear I just saw him but no, that was the beginning of December! I feel like this stretch of time went by SO MUCH FASTER than the last time. Crazy how that works!

I use to write monthly goals and sometimes they would help. Other times I would completely forget about them. I'm trying to be more realistic this year so I haven't decided if I'll still be doing monthly goals. Maybe on some months when I really want to accomplish/get things done that month. 

With that said; I can't think of anything I REALLY want to accomplish in February beyond what I'm hoping with the goals for this year, you know?

So let's just go with a few notes to make about this month instead.

>> I'll be apartment hunting this month (because it's never too early to start; but the whole process is already stressing me out --- gah)
>> I'm really hoping I get my Weaver and Botnist on FFXIV to 60 by the end of the month
>> I'm really hoping to START leveling a tank class on FFXIV --- but I don't have high hopes for it
>> I'm hoping to read 3-4 books this month (I only read 2 last month so I'm "one behind")
>> I'm really hoping to finish Scarlet this month
>> I'm excited to see what my favorite things this month will be
>> That said, I'm excited to see what new things I'll find and discover this month
>> I'm excited to see what products/things I'll finish this month too
>> Wait, if there's only 28 days does that mean that Penny and I don't have a monthaversary this month since there's no 30th? D:
>> I'm HOPING I'll be able to put out videos on my YouTube channel twice a week this month
>> I'm also hoping that I'll remember to vlog while I'm out of state this time too
>> I'm hoping to get a little more tidy this month since I'm sure moving month is going to come up quick

Then there's a few personal goals.

But also, I started playing with my Sony WX300 last month and I've been trying to learn how to use it a bit more since I probably won't be seeing my Canon S90 any time soon. I'm actually really enjoying learning more about this camera and how it works. So here's to hoping I can take more and better product shots \o/.

What are some of your goals for this month?