Wednesday, February 26, 2014

[Review] Magnum Gold?!

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Is Magnum Gold?! as good as gold?

Magnum Gold?! (Yep that is the proper noun: Magnum Gold with a double punctuation) is the latest offering from the existing Magnum Ice Cream Flavors available in the Philippines. It was launched just this February 2014. 

The new Magnum Gold?! PhP55.00 in SM Supermarket

The color scheme of the packaging matches the Royal theme, and I do like the Steampunk inspired logo which is very well done. It reminds you of the golden opulence that is associated with royals.

Steampunk inspired Magnum "M"
The description officially says: 


"Vanilla flavoured ice cream with seasalt caramel sauce coated with golden coloured chocolate"

The ice cream bar is covered with gold-colored chocolate, and underneath is another layer of brown Belgian chocolate. It does not glitter like gold, but it will do.

The golden bar

Gold-colored chocolate, brown chocolate, then vanilla ice cream core
First bite? It was... okay. It's not bad. It also reminded me of a familiar flavor. It was your ordinary ice cream. The seasalt caramel sauce is a rare feature, though. There's not a lot of ice cream with it. However, it only gave a hint to the overall flavor, unlike the Salted Caramel Sundae in McDonald's were the salty sweetness was more prominent. By the way, the swirl effect is nice to look at. 

The swirls of Magnum Gold?!
To be fair, I was not able to fully appreciate Magnum Gold?! because it has a vanilla core. I do have a sweet tooth, and I really do love sweets. However, this Magnum flavor just fell short on the sweetness part. And the familiar flavor I was talking about? It tasted like Toblerone White Chocolate. I guess the coating is white chocolate covered in yellow. 

Hmmm... I might have expected a lot from this product, only to end up being disappointed. Overly hyped products usually tell more than what they really are. They raise your expectations but rarely do they deliver. 

My favorite Magnum flavor so far is Chocolate Truffle, and if you ask me... it feels closer to the taste of opulent gold. It is so heavenly! And If you desire a truly royal taste, then Chocolate Truffle would fit that role much better than Magnum Gold?!


Sunday, February 23, 2014

POE 2014 with Friends and Cosplayers

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I dropped by Starmall Alabang yesterday to support my cosplayer friends who were there for the Pinoy Otaku Encore 2014 event in Starland Themepark. I wished I could cosplay too. However, I have work during weekends now and I admit that I am not as active with the cosplay community as I was before. But I will still give my support in any little way that I can. (^_^) 

I went to the event after work and it was already  very late in the afternoon. The cosplay competition was over and most people already left. But still, I found my friends and I took pictures of them and the other cosplayers. 

The fourth level of Starmall Alabang has a very nice carnival theme and outside is a pool. It was a good place for a photo shoot. I got excited and took pictures! My first models for the day were my friends:


Reeve as Sasuke of Naruto


Reeve as Sasuke of Naruto


Knievel Rosaroso as Naruto

Knievel Rosaroso as Naruto

From one of the Naruto scenes

Avann and Reeve 

Reeve as Sasuke enjoys the view

Here are my photos of cosplayers who graced the event, too: 












My favorite cosplayer of the day is Avann Garcia as Yuuya Kizami of Corpse Party. His stance is perfect. He fits into the character well. Simple costume, yes, but Avann is very much like Yuuya and that convinced me to choose him.


Avann Garcia as Yuuya Kizami

I arrived very late at the venue but it was my first time to actually finish an event. Usually, I go home early. But I was having so much fun with my friends that I decided to stay further. My friend Reeve convinced me to have dinner with them, too. Uh oh, fast food? Hehehe~ Anyway, minsan lang naman kaya pagbigyan. HeheheAnd the best conversations are done over food! Now that I absolutely agree on! 


Angel Mariel with friends over dinner
Now that was time well spent. I really miss cosplay and cosplaying. Attending this event made me realize that I crave for it even more. So... when is the next cosplay event? (^_^)


Friday, February 21, 2014

Gifts

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My week has been full of everything beautiful! Life is a cycle, yes? The last few weeks have been extremely hard to get by. But this week so far... everything seems to be calm and peaceful. 

Just last Sunday, I posted about my EH haul. Whenever I'm feeling down, I either buy stuff or eat sweets. Hehehe~ But little that everybody know that receiving gifts make me happy, too. I show my appreciation by saying "Thank You" first hand... and then posting it on Facebook or better yet, Instagram...

Or here in my blog.(^_^)  For this week, I would like to thank my special friend +Ian Ho for giving me these wonderful gifts! 

 A cutie bear...

Such a cutie pie! 
...and a sweet little flower...

A beautiful white rose bud. 

That bear is so cute I wanna squish it! (^_^) The flower is so beautiful! We offered it to the church. I, too, show my thanks to God by offering Him flowers. 

There are a lot of things to be thankful for! Every moment is a blessing. It just takes a few minutes to take notice, and another minute to stop for a while and say, "Thank You."

Thank you, +Ian Ho \(^_^)/


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Shopping, Life, and Etude House

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"Shopping is my cardio!", so goes the famous quote. I am in absolute agreement with it! Other than being a good exercise, it helps me maintain my sanity, too. Last month has been really quite stressful for me in all aspects, all because time is not enough. I realize that as you grow older, time becomes a privilege. Hmmm... lemme make another philosophical post regarding time some other time. Hehehe~

For now, let's talk about how I fought stress by... shopping in Etude House! (^_^) But you have always keep in mind to be disciplined and to spend below your means. It is okay to buy stuff to make you feel better, but spending more than what you can brings in more financial problems... and with it comes more stress. And that's what we're trying to avoid, right?

So back to the topic. I went to the nearest Etude House branch in my place to buy some cleansing tissues. I use this everyday to remove the dust and pollution on my face when I get to the office. I bought two big packs enough for 3 months of use. 


Happy Tea Time Cleansing Tissue (PhP 198.00)
Actually, my purpose of going to EH was just to buy some cleansing tissues. But when you get there, you will be mesmerized by all the cute cosmetics... the pinks, the beautiful posters of Korean endorsers, and the very accommodating EH sales reps that call you "Princess". It was not my first time in EH, so I already knew what to expect. I did my best to stay disciplined and focused on spending on a budget of PhP500.00. 

The next thing I got was a box of cotton puff. The label says 'puff' but it is actually a cotton pad . I just got curious about the difference between a cotton pad and your ordinary absorbent cotton. Hehehe


A box of Cotton Puff (PhP48.00)
In order to make it to the PhP500 mark, I bought a face mask. It is always a face mask! They are my beauty obsession. For this, I chose to get the I Need You mask sheet in Lemon. It has a big letter L on it. The I Need You mask series has all the letters of the alphabet. Uh oh! Sounds like a plan, right? Hahaha


I Need You Lemon! Mask Sheet (PhP58.00)
For this haul, I got the EH Pink Hair Tie as the GWP. It is so cute that I don't want to open it! The packaging is super cool, as well!


Etude House Pink Hair Tie
EH always has the cutest GWP's. Up to now, I didn't open my hair tie. I get happy just by looking at it. (^_^)

So there is my Etude House shopping haul for the day. I got the thing that I use regularly (cleansing tissues), something out of curiosity (cotton pad), and another because of obsession (face mask). Hehehe~




A girl, even when stressed, should still look beautiful! Just as the quote goes...


So move on and continue even if terrible things happen. Remember to still regard problems as if it's nothing. Thankfully, we have cosmetics to help us look good even if we are under tremendous stress. Hehehe


Thursday, February 13, 2014

My 9th and 10th Sample Room Haul

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Sample Room is so addicting! I have been an avid subscriber since December 2012. So it has been more than a year now. But here I am still getting excited whenever a package with the Sample Room logo arrives at home! 

For this post, I will share to you about my 9th and 10th hauls. Last December, I received the last sample for 2013. It was the H2O+ Face Oasis Dual Action Exfoliating Cleanser. I chose this sample because I heard that sea water minerals work wonders on the skin. It cost me 125 SR Points for a 30mL bottle.


I am currently on this bottle and it is one of the best facial cleansers I have tried. Watch out for my full review about it, soon! (^_^)

So that is skin care for my 9th... and for my 10th haul, it is still about the skin! Hehehe~ This one just arrived in the mail two days ago. So this is the first samples for 2014! Yay! My quest for the perfect  BB Cream for me prompted me to choose the Colour Collection Age Defying BB Cream. 

Why an anti-ageing cream, you ask? Hehehe~ Well, it was the only available BB Cream on stock. The whitening variant was long gone. See, you need to use ninja moves to get samples in Sample Room. 

I'm very happy because they gave out full bottles of 40 mL which costs PhP699.00 in the market. But I only got this for 130 SR Points and the delivery fee of PhP100.00. It's worth it, I must say. Plus, it came with a bonus sample: an 8 mL bottle of Celeteque Cleansing Oil. Sweet! 


More skin care samples! Yay! This time, they complement each other: a facial wash and a BB cream. I love cosmetics and whenever there's a new innovation to try, I grab it... with ninja moves! 

Colour Collection BB Cream and H2O+ Cleanser for my 10th and 9th Sample Room haul

Thursday, February 6, 2014

[Review] Lori

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Bono Artisanal Gelato also has a sundae line. One of the most popular orders I heard while on queue is the Lori sundae. I was not sure whether I should try it, as the sundae line is more expensive that the gelato scoops. But out of curiosity, I tried it to understand why it is in demand. 


Lori, one scoop PhP180
It looks especially delicious, with the adorable dollops of ice cream, colorful toppings, and a large crunch of wafer. 

As I sat on the table contemplating this wonderful piece of art, I saw a little poster nearby which talked about Lori. This yummy sundae is named after the food writer Lori Baltazar of http://dessertcomesfirst.com/, in a very special collaboration with Bono Artisanal Gelato. Now that is very interesting to know. 

The Lori sundae is made up of Dulce de Leche with flambĂ©ed bananas gelato, topped with chocolate syrup, peanut brittle, and a round waffle if you order in a cup. (^_^) 


A closer look at The Lori.
The sundae is not too sweet. The Dulce de Leche is not too overpowering. The bananas are in little chunks and true enough, they still possess that fine wine aftertaste. The chocolate syrup complements the dish by adding sweetness. Lastly, the peanut brittle adds texture to the velvety smooth gelato. 

Eating one is a precursor to inspiration. Why else would I be writing about it now? Hehehe~ It is very yummy! It keeps you coming back for more. (^_^)

You know what was overwhelming in the cup? The icy coolness of the gelato. Brrr…. make sure you pair this up with water. The coldness might irritate the throat after some time. 

All in all, I would give it 2 thumbs up for it's delicious flavor and 5 stars for helping inspire me in writing a blog post. Writers don't have to worry when we have such delicious sundaes to clear our writer's block.



Sunday, February 2, 2014

Elysium Inspired

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"Everyone has one special thing, Max. One thing that they are destined to do. One thing they were born for." -Nun (Elysium by Neill Blomkamp)

I like science fiction films better than drama. I like films that make me analyze and think, not just those that make me laugh or cry. Usually, sci-fi and crying don’t go together. But with Elysium, it does. 

I realized that as you grow older, you become much more sensitive to the sufferings of others. You want to extend help as you empathize with them. A little comfort or a little understanding, that is all that is needed.

I was on a bus going home when the the movie Elysium was being shown. It was actually at the last few scenes but  I was caught up in the action and suspense. I saw the actor Matt Damon fighting a cyborg and on another scene, an unconscious child lying on what looked like an MRI machine. Upon scanning her, the computer monitor read “No Citizen Detected”. And the ending… I cried because I found myself relating to it. Every man on Earth is destined to do something that only he is able to. And one day, everything will make sense and he will be a great man. 

Then after the movie finished, the bus conductor played it again. So I knew that the title of the movie is “Elysium”. And the first statement immediately caught my attention:

In the late 21st century Earth was diseased, polluted and vastly overpopulated.
Earths wealthiest inhabitants fled the planet to preserve their way of life



Then I knew this movie is not just about high-tech gadgets, robots,  and guns. This is a movie about social relevance, injustice, and oppression between the rich and the poor. I don’t know why but I feel I feel as if the movie is describing my life.. a life is full of struggles and sufferings.

The rich (or more specifically, the 1% of Earth's population) lived in this Utopian world in space called Elysium. They have their own gravity and atmosphere. How that came about was not explained in the movie. But their world is so beautiful and green, in contrast to the brown and polluted Earth. 


The 2154 Earth as depicted in the movie
The paradise that is Elysium
Our hero, Max (Matt Damon), is an orphan and always has this childhood dream of going to Elysium. As a child, he would steal things so he could save money and buy his ticket to the Utopian world. But a nun talked to him and it was a very inspiring conversation. 

Nun: Max, have you been stealing things again? It breaks my heart. Why do you do this? So you can save up? One day buy a ticket to that place? That place is not for you, or for me.
Max: But it's not fair, Sister. Why can't I go there?
Nun: Sometimes in life we don't understand why things are the way they are. But I know one thing. I know you are special. You will do something very important one day. Something you were born for. My little Max.
But the nun still encouraged Max with his dream and gave him a locket with Earth’s picture, as a reminder to never forget where he came from. 

Fast forward, we see a grown up Max trying to fix his broken life. But he suddenly got into a tight situation and going to Elysium is the only chance he’s got. 

Everyone on Earth wants to go to Elysium. And as I watched the movie, there is one reason why…

Elysium possessed the high tech medical machine called Med-Bays. It looks like an MRI machine with an overhead scanner. It scans your body and detects all illness. Then it re-atomizes your body and you instantly are cured, like magic. It cures all diseases, even cancer or bone fractures, in an instant. If there will be one breakthrough in Medical Physics in the future, this would be it!


Elysium Med Bay
But why is such a life-saving machine exclusive only to Elysium? The robots they have are all manufactured on Earth and humans enslave themselves to work for Elysium. Ah… All because life is cruel like that. 

The movie is good. It is sci-fi with a heart. I find myself regretting not seeing it on the big screen. I didn’t know that it would be a good movie. The poster was all about cyborgs and robots and futuristic themes. And the title “Elysium”, to me it sounded too scientifically cliche.

But imagine, a sci-fi movie making me cry. This movie was not even popular here in my country. Movies like this is the ones the people should watch. Something that speaks of truth, though combined with fantasy. Intelligent movies that make you think and helps you be sensitive of the current social situation we are all in. 

Maybe one day, Elysium would be a reality. Oh no… Elysium already exists on Earth. You see those skyscrapers heavily guarded by security? And do you see the rich going down to the suburbs to help the poor?

And where am I? I am one of Earth’s citizens. When things get worse, I tell myself:

"Everyone has one special thing, Max. One thing that they are destined to do. One thing they were born for." -Nun (Elysium by Neill Blomkamp)

Photo credits: Sony Pictures 


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