Wednesday, 31 December 2008

YesStyle 5 of 6

Website: YesStyle
Brand: Click South Korean Brand
Price: $25.20
Quality: 4/5
I love this hoodie. It is too cute ^-^. My previous haircut
(before my more Lego style now) made me look like the
character on my shirt, so when I showed my friends
I would pose oddly, mimicking the girl on my shirt. I'll tell you now
her arms are short and look a lot normaller posed than when I do it.
The sweater's quality is pretty good actually. A little thin...
(*kicks the horse*"Wake up horsey!") but compared to the others
it's good. The arms are kind of short...but that was the same
with the other sweater I got too (the best friends one).
I either have rather long appendages, or the clothes shrunk in the dryer.

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

YesStyle 4 of 6

Website: YesStyle
Brand: Romy South Korean Brand
Price: $31.50
Quality: 3/5
This is a really cute shirt/dress. It is very thin,
(noticing a pattern yet?) but I bumped it up to a
3 in quality because...I think it's worth it despite that.
One word of caution, be careful ironing it!
I just about ruined it! The material is synthetic
(I'm assuming). After I ironed it I noticed
that part of the pink overlay had melted away!
Thankfully it was just in the corner,
near the edge of the bib. >_>;

Monday, 29 December 2008

YesStyle Clothing 3 of 6

Website: YesStyle
Brand: Mix & Match South Korean Brand
Price: $19.80
Quality: 3/5
I really like this shirt, it was well represented by it's pictures.
Although I did expect the lettering to be a bit...pinker.
Once again, thinner material than you find around here.
However this is one of my favorites of the clothing I bought,
casual, but different :).

Side Note:
My prices are a bit different then on the site, as I ordered during a
time when all the Korean brands were on sale. :) I'm a bargain hunter...
I also got free shipping, which was crazy nice, since all my stuff was sent
from South Korea, to Hong Kong, to me. Quite the journey.

Sunday, 28 December 2008

YesStyle Clothing 2 of 6

Website: YesStyle
Store Brand: Beige South Korean Brand
Quality: 2/5
Actually I wore this today, with a bright aqua necklace, looked cute.
I like this, even though it makes me look like a peasant.
It did shrink a lot though, compared to when I first opened the box!
Since none of the clothing I bought had labels on them, I just decided
I would wash them regularly (in a machine) and accept what would
happen. (Well actually my mom decided that, and I found out later.)
I liked it longer, however I am content with the shorter version :.
Just so you know though, the material is really thin.
Like...think thinner than those cheap graphic tees you get for $10 on sale ;).
It was pretty pricey too, although I tried to think of it as a shirt and a vest.
This shirt is no longer available to buy, I guess thats a good sign ^_^

means it was popular right?

Saturday, 27 December 2008

Love Me Not/사랑따윈 필요없어

Two posts in one day....strange I know.
This had to be done today though. I guess I'll bite the bullet this once ;).
Genre: Drama
Language: Korean

Julian is a manipulator, who seduces money from rich woman.
However he finds himself in debt, that must be repaid in a month,
otherwise he will be killed. He decides to pose as the,
previously believed as dead, brother of Min, a rich, but blind, orphan.
As the movie progresses so does their relationship.
Will both learn to trust one another, or will Julian really kill Min for her money?

Hmm...I watched this because it was one of Mysoju's
Top 10 Movies of the Week. So I assumed it would be good.
However I wasn't too impressed. (I admit I normally find Asian movies
disappointing.) I wasn't really drawn in to either character much.
As well I found it...ah...I can't seem to explain my dislike for it well.....
Although I admit the ending was strong, I liked the ending,
tragic though it was. (Is that a spoiler?...highlight to read..I thought it was
pretty obvious that they both died,.. )
One thought though, I might not have been drawn in since I
did watch it on Christmas, and I had to keep pausing it,
running and doing something, and coming back.
Maybe I could of been roped in better, if I had watched it all at once.
Perhaps it was my dislike in the way Julian found his money too,
I would of rathered he was a mafia boss or something...

I would be interested in hearing someone elses review. :)

Final word...I wouldn't bother watching it.
It is a melodrama, if you love those,
well then maybe go for it.
Anyways I won't be watching it again anytime soon.

YesStyle Clothing 1 of 6

Well I actually did buy clothes from YesStyle,
not long after my post about it. I received them in November,
but I never got around to putting them up here.
I know, that heart looks creepy, but whenever I post stuff,
I admit to thinking, "if I were a stalker, what would I think?"
Lame, I know. It was drilled into me,
along with chat rooms are bad, (I still only lurk on forums, never posted),
and don't tell anyone where you live.
Well, thanks a lot Google Analytics, or any other program,
that pinpoints my vague location! -__-;....
I remember I always felt guilty if someone asked me "a/s/l/"
on Inklink when I was younger....

(I admit I was really good at that game, I finally left for isketch, since it wasn't much fun
after winning all the time... and they upgraded to the "InkLink Beta" or something,
....where I didn't have all the words memorized ;) topic much.
I admit it's kinda drawing it out by doing a post for almost each article,
but I feel like it is necessary to review each one.
I mean look how long this is without even talking about the clothes!

Website: YesStyle
Store Brand: Shirt-Sechuna Skirt-Romy Both are South Korean Brands
Price: Shirt-$19.80 Skirt-$13.50
(Prices listed in USD because thats how the website displays my account info)
Quality: 3/5
Well both items are cute, and true to their catalog photo.
(I actually combined two photos for the "catalog" photo shown here)
The skirt seems like the elastic might want to twist in the washer,
but so far so good. I'd say average quality for a cheaper store. They are "One Size Fits All" so for once I am a normal size I guess :D. I must of been made for asian clothes :)

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Merry Christmas・メリクリスマス・메리 쿠리스 마 스

Well not much I can say.... I broke out the accordion today. Man, was it heavy, but I persevered =_=;. So now you get stuck with the results, as I had no idea what to put up for Christmas. Sorry for having no festive background. We didn't get a tree again this year. (Not that I mind.) My family isn't big into the commercialized Christmas :). Bah humbug to you Santa!

All I did a few gifts, watch Korean drama with my mom, and I went with my family to our Christmas dinner that we help with, it's a dinner for those who don't have anywhere else to go. An outreach if you will, from our church. Finished cleaning up by 6:30. Now it's around 10:00, (I don't really remember what I just wasted those hours in between on...I was on the computer anyways.) Wow...that's pretty sad I can't remember....Oh right! I finished watching a Korean movie for my review later this week. :) yay I remembered!

So now I'm going to continue watching Korean Drama with my mom.
Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings, and Merry Christmas ^-^.

メリクリスマス/메리 쿠리스 마 스

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Sweet 18/ 낭랑18세

Wow this was cutting it pretty close, I only finished it last night.
Ah well I made my week deadline for it. :)
Language: Korean
Jung-Sook has been arranged to marry Hyuk-Joon since she was a child. Now, being of age, it is time for her to marry him. She's graduated from High school, but has no real dream in life, and decides getting married would be the easiest option. Hyuk-Joon is a prosecutor, who is 10 years older than Jung-Sook. He is a dedicated man, who is worried about Jung-Sook being too much of a kid to marry. This drama tells the story of their married life, with the many problems they face. Such as when Hyuk-Joon's ex-girlfriend returns, and wants him back. Will he choose to go back to his old flame, or will he find feelings for Jung-Sook?
This is one of the best dramas I've watched so far. I really enjoyed it. Perhaps it's just a relief to get away from the Jdramas for awhile....(I still love them, but they are well....). Anyways, I really thought the main actors did a good job. Especially Lee Dong-Gun, (as Hyuk Joon), you could really read his subtle facial expressions well, throughout the whole series. (I'm not saying he over-acted or anything ;) As well it was so nice to see some character development in a drama. The main area being in Han Ji-Hye's character, Jung-Sook, as she starts of rather immature (I admit I was worried I would have to watch episode after episode of those cliched "stubborn-dumb-women" cliche episodes. You know the ones I'm talking about, where they do things that you just just know will end with something bad happening, that no one else in their right mind would do...blahhh.). However, in the drama, she matures rather early on, and continues to all the way until the end. I grew to like her character a lot, it rang true (most of the time).
This a definite watch. So far this is one of my favorite Korean dramas. An interesting note: the two leads actually dated for 3 years.^-^ they seemed pretty cute together, too bad they broke up.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Christmas Foods #2: Eggnog (and things made by it)

I really couldn't tell you why Eggnog is seasonal,
I mean it's eggs, milk, sugar, and some spices....>_>
Anyways, last night I made some Eggnog Bread.
(first time trying it, and it was an okay recipe)

For your information, no, that isn't a big burnt piece in the middle....
that was supposed to be the "cinnamon swirl",
that ended up being a "cinnamon chunk",
as I made it first....and the butter wasn't still melty,
when the time came to "swirl" it into the bread.....

As for these cookies they are Eggnog Cookies.
Fresh from today. A pasty looking cookie,
but yummy nonetheless.
(I discovered the recipe for them last year,
and it was a hit!)
I suppose I should put the recipes up. Bah I'm such a lazybug....

Here is a link instead:
Eggnog Cinnamon Swirl Bread courtesy Recipe Zaar/Mirj

Quick Review:
I omitted the toffee pieces and pecans, as I didn't have them.
The edges were a little browner than I would have liked,
but otherwise easy, and pretty good.
And now I guess I the holiday spirit,
type out the eggnog recipe give you another link!
Eggnog Cookies courtesy of Recipe Zaar/Connie C.
(I just about did, but I realized that one was the same as
my recipe....I probably found it on that site to begin with anyways.)

So that is another probably too-long blog post ;).
Now a question for you...
What is the difference between original and classic eggnog?
Do you drink eggnog during the Christmas Season exclusively?

(I actually almost never drink eggnog,
I find it too strong, even when milked-down...
although the smell... okay it smells good :).
I wonder if you can freeze eggnog...?
so I could make eggnog cookies in march.....)

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Christmas Foods #1: Mini Honey Mandarin Oranges

These tiny oranges are about the size of a...flattish ping pong ball...?
But they pack a punch! They are super sweet :) and have
hardly any rind. (I know, I know.... that's supposed to be the healthiest part
..... but...bah!...when I was little I wouldn't eat any oranges,
because of all that "white stuff" on them)

Working as a cashier, I see a lot of yummy things go through my till.
One of these things were the Mini Honey Mandarin Oranges.
I had heard they were like eating candy. On one of the brands it
even had a light conversation between oranges.
Big Orange: I'm bigger!
Little Orange: But I'm sweeter!
I mean talk about marketing! I was rather convinced of their amazingness...
So now they sit, all cleanly washed ^_^
(I always wash produce before eating it).
I am happily indulging in these, hoping somehow, that all this
Vitamin C will kill all the cold bugs I have... and that I won't die
from led poisoning or anything (it says MADE IN CHINA ;)...

On a side note, I can handle most things, headaches, fever...whatever.
I have a pretty high pain tolerance. However once my
nose gets plugged.....I admit it....I turn into a baby.
Perhaps one day they will find a cure for a stuffy nose....

Monday, 8 December 2008

My Little Bride/어린 신부

Genre: Romance/Comedy/Highschool
Language: Korean
Fifteen year old Boeun is just trying to get through her school years, as a normal kid. However her grandfather made a promise, to his old friend, that one of their children would marry. Both men only had sons though, so the duty now falls on their grandchildren. Despite the fact that it means a marriage between 15 year old Boeun and 20/30 something Sangmin. They do end up married. However Boeun falls for a young, baseball player at school, just as Sangmin starts his new job, as her school's new art teacher....Will an arranged marriage become true love, or can you be too young for marriage?
Well this is one of the first Kmovies I've seen. Short enough, that it kinda summed up something I could of seen being a bit of a weak drama. Pretty cute, except for the minor (pun intended) problem of, Boeun supposed to being only about 15.
If you're looking for a light hearted movie to spend an evening with, and don't mind a slightly creepy age difference watch this.
*Note: It's not that I have anything against large age-gaps in's just that the main girl is supposed to be a little gr.10'er. That's what weirds me out o_x;*

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Cookies and....???

"Cookies and Their Appropriate Beverage Accompaniments"

(Pictured above, a confused glass, unable to shake the fear of making a wrong this glass you?)
I was recently eating a chocolate-chip cookie that I had baked, and as I am not-yet learned in the art of "how-long-to-bake-cookies-so-that-they-are-soft-kwan-doe" they were...a little...dried out? make it easier on my mouth, I decided to soak them in Apple Juice. Dip, rather. This is a natural instinct for me, as I have memories of my father dipping his cookies in Apple Juice. Curious as to if I was the only one who did this, I searched on the Internet,, nada, nothing! Can you believe it? I mean...hasn't everyone eaten a cookie with apple juice?
I do realize there is the traditional "milk & cookies" saying, however this only applies to oreo cookies, or some close knock-off.
So for those of you who need a guide, in the cookie world,
here you go! In Living Technicolor!
(courtesy of MS Paint.)
Cookies & Their Respective Partners

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Hana Yori Dango Finale/花より男子ファイナル

Language: Japanese
(I realized I haven't reviewed the Hana Yori Dango series, but I'm sure I will eventually.)

This is the story of Makino Tsukushi(Mao Inoue), and Tsukasa Domyoji(Matsumoto Jun), who are to be married in the Spring. After officially announcing their engagement, Domyoji's mother presents the "Smile of Venus", an amazing crown, worth billions. However it is stolen and they then must chase it around the world. Will they be able to regain the crown and are they really compatible for marriage together?

I'll start off with saying, this is a movie, not a drama. I normally find Japanese movies to be...disappointing. I find that they are like....over-cliched extra episodes. I'd say this could even be considered a souped-up SP, not even a movie ;). However apparently it did well in Japan...
Anyways, if you liked Hana Yori Dango you'll want to see it (like I did). As I finished watching this today, it's still pretty fresh in my mind.... Like I said, it's okay, nothing more, nothing less. I was rather amused at how they portrayed an American trucker though....ah I always love seeing the Japanese-English at work in Jshows.

In closing, watch it if you've seen the Hana Yori Dango series. If you haven't then....go watch the dramas first. ^_~.
Random Note: I actually have the photo book for this movie, Rei (my Japanese exchange student), brought it for me.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

풀하우스/Full House

Genre: Romance/Drama
Language: Korean*
(*will start putting this here, since I will be reviewing both Japanese and Korean shows)

Han Ji-eun lives byherself, in "Full House", a home her parents built. One day her two closest friends, give her a ticket for a dream vacation! Though slightly suspicious she finally agrees to go. Only to find out shes been swindled; not just the vacation, but her house was sold while she was gone as well! Long story short she calls out to Lee Young-jae, a movie star she met on her trip. They set up a contract, where she will agree to marry him for 6 months, after that they will divorce and she can keep the house.
All seems like it will go according to plan, but what about Lee Young-jaes feelings for Kang Hye-Won, his childhood friend since the age of 9. As well, will Han Ji-eun accept Yoo Min-Hyuk feelings for her, despite the marriage contract? It becomes quite the love square!

Finished this one last night. Such a good drama. It has an okay ending, and is strong all the way through. The characters are lovable and believable. I got rather sucked in, mainly by the two leads: Bi(Rain) and Song Hye-kyo.

The original idea of a marriage by contract is pretty crazy, but it shows how two people can fall in love, even with many differences. By being able to see all sides of a person, it allows you to become closer right? Like family I guess. Anyways this is a good watch. Korean dramas are known for their slow-pace, but this one isn't bad, at 16 episodes it is definitely watchable.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Chai Cake ♥

Well yesterday I baked a chai cake.
Not as delicious as when my mother makes it, but good nonetheless.
I slightly messed up the amount of baking powder >_>;
but it still rose nicely.
I recommend this cake for anyone who loves chai :D,
however Watkins is the only place I know of the get chai powder
(it's great to drink too.).
My mom sells the stuff, so we come by it easily.
For others...I guess you could order it online :)?

I admit it doesn't look as pretty as I'd like...
but we had company and I had to put the glaze on rather quickly.
(Didn't have time for it to harden nicely before cutting.)
Anyways here is the recipe:

Chai Cake

3 tbsp/45 mL Chai Latte
2/3 cup/160 mL hot water
1 cup/250 mL flour
1-1/2 tsp/7.5 mL Baking Powder
1 tsp/5 mL Cinnamon
170 g1/4 tsp/1.2 mL Cloves (Ground)
1/4 tsp/1.2 mL Ginger
1/4 tsp/1.2 mL Sea Salt
1/2 cup/125 mL butter or margarine
3/4 cup/180 mL granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp/5 mL Original Double Strength Vanilla Extract

Chai Glaze
2 tbsp/30 mL butter or margarine
1-1/2 cups/375 mL powdered sugar
1 tsp/5 mL Original Double Strength Vanilla Extract
1/4 tsp/1.2 mL Cinnamon 170 g
Reserved 2 tbsp/30 mL prepared Chai Latte from cake recipe
Grated cinnamon stick (optional)

+Cooking Directions
Heat oven to 325°F/170°C. Grease and flour a round cake pan (8"/20 cm).
Stir hot water into Chai Latte until blended.
Measure 1/2 cup/125 mL for cake and set aside 2 tbsp/30 mL for glaze.
Mix flour, baking powder, 1 tsp cinnamon, cloves, ginger and salt.
Set aside. Beat sugar and butter in large bowl with electric mixer
on medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until fluffy.
Beat in eggs and vanilla until smooth and blended.
Gradually beat in flour mixture alternately with 1/2 cup
Chai Latte until smooth. Pour into pan.Bake for 25-30 minutes or
until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes;
remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
Spread Chai glaze over top of cake, allowing some to drizzle down side.
Sprinkle with additional cinnamon.
*For glaze: melt butter in 1-quart/litre saucepan over medium heat. Stir in remaining ingredients until smooth. Drizzle glaze on cake. If desired, grate cinnamon on top as garnish

Monday, 17 November 2008

Lunch Queen/ランチの女王

Genre: Comedy/Romance/Food...
Language: Japanese

Natsumi's favorite time of the day is lunch! Food is one of her passions, and she loves trying new restaurants. One day she runs into a distraught young man, Kenichiro, who asks her to pose as his fiance. Somehow she agrees to it, and ends up being abandoned by front of his family! His brothers feel obliged to take care of her, and she begins working at their family restaurant.
Over time all the brothers start to care for Natsumi.
Who will Natsumi's heart really beat for, of all the brothers?
Wow, I watched this one a long time ago.
Still, if my memory serves me well, this was a cute series.
Normal dramas have long shots of good-looking fellows,
or the heroine, this one has long, dreamy shots xD.
They really get across the "in-a-restaurant" feel,
and watching will often make you hungry!
The ending isn't great, but that's not completely unusual for this kind of show.
I recognized a few of the minor actors, like: Ito Misaki(Kiken Na Aniki), Yamada Takayuki (Water Boys), and Yamapi...(Who doesn't know this guy?!) :).
In closing, its a okay way to waste 12 hours.
Go ahead watch the story unfold, there's even a bit of action, involving a criminal!

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Kurosagi/ クロサギ (dorama)

Genre: Action/Romance
Language: Japanese

Kurosagi is about a young man whose entire family was killed, by his father, after his father lost all his money to a scam. Kurosagi then vowed to remove all the swindlers from the world, by beating them at their own game. He hopes to avenge his family in this way. One day, however, he meets Yoshikawa who strongly objects to his way of life, and tries to get him to change. How will their relationship evolve? Will Kurosagi ever get caught?

Ah who doesn't love Yamashita Tomohisa? This is one of my favorite series. Each episode envolves a different swindler that Kurosagi must face. The way he wins back the money is always interesting. Kind of like a modern day....Robin Hood. The last few episodes are pretty heart-racing too, if I recall correctly.
There isn't too much romance, which is nice for this type of show. Horikita Maki does okay, but really she wasn't what kept me watching the show. Thankfully it isn't all, "damsel-in-distress" or "stupid-girl-getting-in-the-way". She is more like a side plot.

Watch this. Enough said, it's really a very cool show.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

Returning to Japan

I was accepted to go to Japan again...

(Taken in Asakusa).

I get to go for longer, probably two weeks :D.
Since the time we go is inbetween their school years,
I get to go to a week of school
(since they only get a week off between, weird I know)
I will even get to wear my friends old uniform ^-^, I hope it's the same as everyone elses...

(Taken from Tokyo Tower)
I also get to stay with the same host family, as last year,
the same home where my exchange student, this summer, came from.
Ahh I can't wait to see them all again!
(Taken in Tokyo Disneyland)
I can't wait to stock up on Japanese music! With my new camera I can take double the pictures I took last year, plus I will be staying double the time. Last year in a week I took 300+ photos >_>. I'm the worst gift buyer though, and hardly bought anything last year, except for music xD. Most of my presents brought home were omiyagi (gifts from my host family.)
Please give me gift ideas for my host family!
The Japanese are huge into gifting, but I'm not too imaginative.
Plus I used up all my ideas last year and this summer :( .
(You have to give gifts when going and recieving)
Last years presents: (Everything had Canada insignias on them)
-Key chains
-Little gift boxes
-Maple Syrup
-Maple Cookies
-Bouncy Balls
-Nature Books
-Jelly Bellys (I realize not Canadian :P)
-My mother crocheted a blanket
-I also brought pancake mix, 4 types of home-made jam, Canadian paper plates, and napkins. Then I made them a pancake breakfast :D.
Warning: Jam is a very heavy when thinking about weight in luggage :O
....and more, I just can't remember right now :(
So taskute kudasai ! (Please help!)
I'm sure you have imaginative gift ideas :D.
So far I've thought of...socks....and Archie Comics....

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Nodame Cantabile/のだめカンタビーレ

Genre: Comedy/Romance
Language: Japanese

Nodame is a brilliant, but lazy piano player. She plays easily by ear, but doesn't bother to read the notes! She also is hopeless in everyday life, such as not bathing, and stealing food from her friends for lunch. One day she meets Chiaki, a man with no little talent, and falls in love. He is known as a top student with a major in piano, as well as being able to play the violin. However deep down he wants to become a conductor. Eventually the two begin a strange friendship, which eventually progresses into romance.

This is one of those cute romances I enjoy, lots of comedy to keep it going. Normally I get easily frustrated by stupid heroines, however Nodame (portrayed by Ueno Juri) is actually rather endearing. I think perhaps since she acts like a child, you don't expect as much from her... Chiaki (portrayed by Tamaki Hiroshi) isn't the typical heart-throb, but he is a good leading male.

This drama is really worth watching, and the music is gorgeous to listen to. ^-^

Monday, 27 October 2008

Mennonite Fried Bread & Watermelon!

I've had this delicious combo before, and recently had it again,
so I decided to share it with the world!
(Or at least the one or two of you who read this.)
I haven't actually made any myself,
however next time my neighbors make it they said they will invite me over.
I too want to learn the mysterious ways of this food.
You can eat the bread with syrup or jam, however I prefer to eat it plain.
I am not one for tainting naturally, beautiful food.
The watermelon pictured above, although not seedless, was very sweet for so late in the season. All in all it was a great snack,
and reminded me of my Japanese friend
as we ate it together a few days before she returned home. Ah...memories.
Anyone else ever tried this delicacy?
I believe its proper name is Rollkuchen, or so my not-so-extensive-google-search tells me.

Yasuko to Kenji/ヤスコとケンジ

Genre: Comedy/Romance
Language: Japanese

Kenji is a manga artist who lives with his sister Yasuko and his two assistants. Their parents died when they were young; causing Kenji to leave his violent gangster past in exchange for something he could support his younger sister with. This dorama is the story of when Erika, also a previous gangster, and her younger brother Jun moves into town . Yasuko falls in love with Jun, while Erika is in love with Kenji. Can they overcome their barriers and find true love? Will they be able to overcome their character flaws and become one, big, happy, family?

This is probably one of the lamest dramas I have ever watched. I liked it, however it was far too cheesy for my likings. The main thing that kept me coming back was Matsuoka Masahiro as Kenji. The rest were such generic characters it was hard to stay interested. I particularly found the main heroine to be boring, and not very pretty. Her love interest, the supposed heart-throb, was pretty uninteresting to put it lightly. The script wasn't that good, and to be honest the actors weren't either. (Man I sound so harsh! >_>)

Well if you are looking for a drama with uncountable cliches, predictability, but with still enough funny to, maybe, keep you amused. This could be for you.

Monday, 20 October 2008

I've Been Married to Hell/エラいところに嫁いでしまった!

Genre: Comedy
Language: Japanese

Kimiko Makimura marries into the Yamamoto family, via Isojirou, an incompetent, yet kind-hearted man. She soon learns that the Yamamoto family is no ordinary family, but one obsessed with traditions. As well her Mother-in-Law believes she can do no wrong; she believes that Kimiko wants to learn all the customs of their home, as quickly as possible. Each time she visits them she vows never to return, but nonetheless still gets sucked back. Each episode shows how Kimiko interacts with her new in-laws and their quirks.

Just finished this one last night. (Watched some of this series with my mom.) An alright drama. If your looking for something kind of dopey, but sweet, this is it. The whole series is a bit slow, but you do grow to really like some of the characters. Kimiko, (who is played by Nakama Yukie, the lead in Gokusen) does well. The mother-in-law played by Matsuzaka Keiko is really endearing, and quite the loving mother. However I admit the ending, like in many Jdoramas, is rather weak. I didn't even realize it was the finale until I looked at the title half way through the episode....

Anyways so in a nutshell not the best drama ever, but definately a family watch. If you are looking for a time killer this is a cute, short series with only 9 episodes.

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Asian Clothing Stores?

Ah the relaxed, yet fashionable, Korean style or the cute Japanese style? I admit, I am a wanabe Asian. Sadly I am also cheap...

I enjoy drooling over the Asian clothing at shops such as yesstyle, asiajam, and other sites. However I have never actually ordered. Lately though I've been itching to finally give it a try. As a rule I'm not one for online shopping, too shifty, buuuttt this is one exception I might just make...

An example of a slightly sketchy sounding warranty from an online Asian clothing store would be this:

We cannot guarantee specific results, however, we know our clothes are nice. First of all, we do not know what a particular person is feeling or experiencing, and there is no way to measure their level of discomfort. Everyone has different tolerances and different levels of expectations. Besides, doctors do not and cannot guarantee medicines or treatments. Physical therapists do not and cannot guarantee any specific results. Surgeons do not and cannot guarantee any specific results. Consequently, neither do we. -From Color-Shopping

Not that I'm judging the site though, it has a whole lot of nice clothes. I just don't know if I would trust it :). I mean it has separate sections for Pants, Jeans, and Trousers. Talk about specifying!

So if anyone has ever ordered from an Asian clothing site, tell me about it? How was the quality? What did you buy? I'm always interested in Asian style <3>

(P.S. Doesn't the above dress look far more Japanese than Korean? )

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Kimi wa Petto/きみはペット

Genre: Romance/Comedy
Language: Japanese

One day a downtrodden business women, Iwaya Sumire, stumbles upon an unconcsious good-looking fellow, stuffed into a box. She then proceeds to attempt to rescue him by bringing him back to her apartment. Long story short she allows him to stay only if he becomes her pet. That means eating, sleeping, not talking...basically to be an animal. (she even pets him....>_>) Eventually they bond and you get to watch their relationship evolve and how they react to problems.

Ah this was one of the first shows I watched. With the famous Matsumoto Jun. (I remember my host-mom loved him, even had pictures of him on her phone xD.) It was okay, not my favorite, but it had it's moments. Matsumoto Jun was cute in his role. Kiyuki was a solid enough career women, she portrayed the realization up of her character's feelings well.

With a slightly shifty story line, and a relatively predictable ending, Kimi wa Petto still becomes a good dorama. I would say if you have some time to burn, may as well try this for wood.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Geese Shooting!...(not really...)

Ah could this be....? A goose from my past?
Well not to long ago, as per every year, a bunch of geese landed in the field across the road. So I decided to try out my new camera with some wildlife shots! Long story short I actually ended up crawling under a neighbors fence just to get to the field...nevertheless I was not deterred. I enjoyed taking their photos, and they enjoyed keeping their distance. With one who enjoyed honking at me(pictured above), and scaring me away basically. (Don't worry I didn't get very close, all my pictures were, pretty well, taken with my 12x zoom.)

Now for story time. A few years ago there was a goose, who seemed to have separated from his comrades. He then decided to wander around my block. He stayed around for a day or so and even let people come up to him. So he got quite his share of bread, and such. Note: Geese do not seem to like small dogs. Now obviously it isn't the wisest choice to go petting wild animals! Don't attack me environmentalists! Anyways the bird stayed around for about a day, and then flew off, I guess.

No harm done. History has not repeated itself. So obviously the bird didn't decide that it would become the goose version of flipper, and hang out with us every year. Thinking about those geese in the field though, makes me think, I wonder if one of those geese is the goose...Hard to tell, since all them geese look alike. ;) As well I wonder how long do geese remember stuff, you'd think a long time, right? I mean migrating? That takes at least some memory skills.

Well there you go there is the deep, national geographic version of unread tales. Please note: no geese were harmed during the shooting of the above photo.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

One Litre of Tears/1リットルの涙

Perhaps one of the most famous Japanese tear-jerkers?

Genre: Drama, Tear-Jerker
Language: Japanese

This is a dorama based on the diary of a young girl, who became ill with a progressive disease (one that can't be cured.) Despite her daunting circumstances, and declining health, she decides to try her best to live her life to the fullest.

This was one of the few sad doramas I've watched. It was really touching, and you really begin to sympathise with the characters. To this day one particular scene still remains vivid in my mind. It really breaks your heart, to watch her declining so rapidly (literally since Jdramas seem to. almost always, have a max. 12 episodes.) I didn't cry during this, but I considered it.

I recognized a few of the actors, like Ryo Nishikido; but not the main girl, Erika Sawajiri, although she did do a good job.

So watch it, no it is not a comedy, but there are sweet moments too. (Not all heaviness :)

Sunday, 5 October 2008

So Saucy....

Ah The Tomato!

Well we had received a bunch of tomatoes from friends.
(we still had quite a few left-over tomatoes, even after filling our sink, pictured above.)
So on Saturday my mom decided to put them to use.
We canned tomato sauce!
For pizza, lasagna, spaghetti...etc.

Above you can see all the spices added. I was the official mixer-girl. Although I had other unofficial titles, such as tomato-retriever, spice-dumper, and labeler, among other things.

This is the finished product. Turned out well from what I can see. Since I haven't actually tasted it since cooking....was fun though. The house smelt great after too; smelt a lot like when you make salsa.

Monday, 29 September 2008

結婚できない男/The Man Who Can't Marry

Genre: Comedy
Language: Japanese

This is basically about the daily life of Kuwano Shinsuke, an eccentric architect. His relationships with the people around him, and just his normal behaviour cause for interesting episodes.

This was one of the first dramas I watched, and started my love for Abe Hiroshi. He is quite the funny guy. If you want something to be amused by, it's this show. No it isn't an idol-cliche-romance-dorama, it's just plain interesting. Don't be weirded out by the first episode though! (Ahaha I remember I was....) if you persevere it is really a fun show. I even watched this show with my mom, and a friend or two, when I was first trying to show the great world of Japan's TV to them.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

The Evolution Of Taste (in gaming)

In the beginning....

When I was a child, my brothers owned a sega. That opened my eyes to the world of gaming.

One Christmas (I think....) we were delighted to the gift of a N64 (still one of the best consoles, in my eyes). During those years with the N64 I discovered the joys of Harvest Moon, the farming sim game. I mean who wouldn't love picking turnips, wooing...uh...girls (they didn't have girl versions back then), and petting cows. I even got my first calluse from playing the N64 so much. (Haven't had one since that I'm aware of...)


As the years passed we found it was time to upgrade. We bought a gamecube, (also there was a short time with a playstation, but it was for only a week, when I rented it for my play Harvest Moon: Back to Nature....). To this day my gamecube sits rather forlorn and sad in the corner. The only games I really played on it were Harvest Moon, LOTRO, and Mario Party. I was never into those shoot-em ups or sports. Yuck x 200.

Ah consoles....I used to love you....before I met the internet. Plus consoles these days are far too expensive, I'm too much of a cheapskate to keep up.

These days I don't game as much as I used to. Back in my younger days I would play Puzzle Pirates, Age of Empires, Civilization....Now the only game I really play is LOTRO. (level 40 Elf Champion) Such a good game...Once again the main reason I'm not more into the MMORPG scene is the price. I mean the only reason I finally gave in to LOTRO was because it was on sale >_>;.....I highly recommend this game, in case anyone is looking for a new RPG. Perhaps one day I will do a post on it alone. Not today though.

Anyways, so what fond memories do others have of their gaming days? Now or past?

To this day I own 5 Harvest Moon titles (with the consoles to play them.)GBA: Friends of Mineral Town, More Friends of Mineral Town (girl version of afore mentioned), GC: A Wonderful Life, Another Wonderful Life (girl version of afore mentioned), and Songs of Happiness (includes option for boy or girl, seriously I think the suckiest Harvest Moon made...I've only played it a few times...). I even have the stuffed dog from pre-ordering one of them <3.

Random Note: One of the first reasons why I wanted to learn Japanese as a really young child was so I could get Harvest Moon before it was released in Canada (as it would first come out in Japan). haha...

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

ごくせん/Gokusen: A brief review of 1,2 & 3

Genre: School Comedy
Language: Japanese

All three Gokusens revolve around a Yakuza teacher, Yamaguchi Kumiko. She always ends up teaching delinquents; and through the season the fellows of questionable repute are slowly changed, by "Yankumi" (her nickname).

Each episode follows the same outline: boys are accused of something they didn't do, Yankumi believes them, they get beaten up by a gang, Yankumi saves them and they learn an important moral.


I really enjoyed this series. I admit 1 & 3 were my favorite, I found 2 just a little too similar/boring for my tastes. Although like previously mentioned, they all have the same basic plot structure, which could perhaps become monotonous (as you can easily predict what will happen.)

The main difference between the 3 seasons is the students and teachers. Although the Vice-Principle/head teacher is the same in all of them. The chemistry that goes on between Yamaguchi sensei and Kojousensei is extremely funny. He is one of my favorite characters.

Main Re-Occurring Cast:

Nakama Yukie (pictured above)

Namase Katsuhisa

Utsui Ken

The main student actors are: (according to seasons)

Season 1

Matsumoto Jun

Season 2

Akanishi Jin

Kamenashi Kazuya

Season 3

Takaki Yuya

Miura Haruma
(I love his hair)

Saturday, 20 September 2008

A Personal First!

Ah the smell of baking!

For the first time, I baked with no outside help whatsoever. Normally when I actually bother to cook or bake it's with someone else. I mean sure I've made the occasional no-bake cookies by myself...but otherwise I've been pretty dependent on people for help. Well no longer!

Above is a picture of one of my scones I made today. I even mushed it/kneaded it with my fingers (which is an accomplishment I assure you.) Though they differed slightly in the size department, the taste seemed un-effected.

With determination, reading abilities and a good recipe the previously thought impossible was brought to light! (I even filled the flour canister up, which weighs a ton!)

I feel so...independent now. Like I could cook rice and chicken and have them ready at the same time.....Actually I better not push it, last time I made chicken....well....lets just say Tandoori chicken will never be the same in my mind.

Anyways there is the amazing story for today, they were ほんとうにおいしかった! (Really very delicious) If you too want to experience the thrills of scone making, let me know! The recipe I have is great, whipping cream....vanilla.....stuff that's not in the average scone. Easy enough too!

If I can do it, you can to!

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

ホタルノヒカリ/Hotaru no Hikari

Well I've decided to start doing a weekly, or perhaps monthly review of a show that I've watched or am watching. Perhaps for lack of interesting events in my life, as well as to inform you, the viewer. This weeks Dorama is Hotaru no Hikari!

Genre: Romance Comedy

The main story line is about a successful business women (played by Ayase Haruka), who at home is the total opposite of her work persona, as she's actually a slob/himono-onna (driedfish-woman); who prefers to drink beer on her porch, rather than go on dates. Somehow, her recently divorced boss (played by Fujiki Naohito) ends up moving in, which makes for some interesting moments. The show revolves around her life, love, and work.

I really liked this show, I thought it was rather funny. From what I can remember, as I watched this awhile ago, so don't take my word as exact..., it's well enough paced, and most episodes are enjoyable. Not SUPER romantic, more cute comedy.
I've seen a few shows with Fujiki Naohito, and it was nice to see him with a bigger role. It was the first time I saw a show with Ayase Haruka, she held up well enough I suppose, pretty too... Anyways, overall a good show.

P.S. I've started Korean lessons :D

Thursday, 11 September 2008

New Camera

Well when my exchange student left, I sent my camera to be fixed. As as soon as I would put batteries in it, I would only get maybe 5-10 photos before it shut off, saying I needed to change the batteries. This was not the first time I had sent it away either, not long after buying it my focus stopped working properly, so I had to get a new part for it.

Anyways this time it was "uneconomical" to fix it, therefore I was free to get a new one! Yay! I love warranties! The only thing being, was that my ol' Canon A540 was a good two years old, and my replacement was half the price! Ah with new cheaper technology my old $300 camera became worth only $150. Therefore I decided I may as well fork out some bucks to upgrade.

Still being too cheap to go up to an SLR, I went for a megazoom. Although the pickings were rather slim. As I am anti-sony, and pro-Canon. With only one Canon model present, I bought it, and the return lady gave me a bargain (i.e. she gave me my camera free....being $300 approx. the same price as my old one. So I only had to pay for my new warranty and my case.)

So I am officially the new owner of a S5 IS Canon PowerShot. Nothing too spectacular, but I'm pleased with it so far. Although the lensecap is a tad annoying, as it constantly falls off....

Oh and update on Korean lessons, I am now getting Korean lessons, in exchange for teaching Japanese. Fighting! Starts Sunday, will do my best :P.