June 07, 2016

Hello and I'm back

It's time to revive you wonderful little blog. Thus begins a new chapter of my life where I start sharing what I've soaked in my brain having worked at Sephora Corporate the past three years of my life. Though I work in Analytics at Sephora, I think (or hope) the almost 24/7 beauty product exposure these past couple of years has given me plenty to share about the cosmetics world.

Behold a new blog featuring Geener's rambling and thoughts on skincare and makeup... and I'll drizzle in some lifestyle posts as well.

Stay tuned =)

December 31, 2015

Squeezing one in before 2016

10 hours left until 2015 can be wrapped up in a bow

Looking back and the defining moments for the past couple of years: 
2010 - Undergrad Graduation
2011 - Grad School Move across the US
2012 - Discovering my 'moneymaking' Career Interest =)
2013 - Graduation, moving back to the west coast starting my first job ever
2014 - Happiest year with a beau but the most stressful work year yet.
2015 would be defined as the year of travel:  Boston, Houston, Austin, Vancouver, Taiwan, Seattle, Las Vegas, Atlanta, SF, LA. I saw so much more of the world and enjoyed every moment. But aside from traveling, it was a year of self dilemma, uncertainty and stress. Still I think I've learned a good amount in the working realm. Despite being dealt some less than optimal cards, I think I've managed well. And for this I am proud.  

For 2016, have 5 resolutions to maintain 1. Happiness 2. High Motivation 3. Lower stress levels 4. Good Health and 5. Re-discover my old hobbies and passions... starting with this blog

Cheers to 2016

June 25, 2013

Why we do the things we do.

I went to Ralphs today to pick up a few things for mom.

On my way down the bread aisle I passed by a man pushing his shopping cart. This guy was a giant.... at least 6 feet 4... and at least 200 pounds.

Our grocery cart clicked. "oh sorry". I adjusted my path and glanced up for a brief second.

Within that microsecond, we made eye contact.


It's funny how the human mind works... and what things we remember from the past. I knew his full name. He went to my elementary school, and we were in the same 3rd grade class. I knew the name of his best friend then. They were inseparable... zooming around the carpeted classroom floor with their beloved toy trunks and engines. He wore striped overalls and was a train conductor one Halloween.

And I specifically remember a scene during circle time when our teacher confiscated his muddy toy stick... and stuffed it in her bra.

Aside from the same sandy brown hair, I could swear this person looks completely different. In fact, despite him being a classmate, I'd barely spoke to then... it was the era when boys had cooties.

Yet I recognized him after over a decade. Similarly, his blue eyes bared into mine with a sense of recognition.

and then we continued our separate ways down the grocery aisle.

June 24, 2013

my last 24 hours in boston.... not.

my alarm beeps. i had set it for no reason, no exams no test, no nothing. the only things certain today are that i have to get my room wrapped up. as neat as a sleek can. and successfully catch the 7am plane next morning. oh and shoe racks.

getting closure on close to a thousand days of your life on the atlantic side of the united states is not just physically, but emotionally toiling as well.

tapping of rain on the windowsill, no, i mean pounding. is the sky crying? I’m being dramatic. shit. I need to donate my stuff.

suddenly i find myself and two other friends jaywalking across streets each lugging a 30 lb box of clothing. I curse myself for the tax free enticement of massachusett’s law on garments. its raining horse tears. packaging tape soaks up.. and sneakily loosens it’s grip. my poor cardboard boxes. postal office lady is a bitch. i spend 100 on shipping.

so i treat myself with boba to make myself feel better.

i go home after lunch and sit in world war 3 for 1 more hour until realize my broken guitar and clothes must be donated or sold. i find that donation is the only option .. and slowly feel more and more empty as things are given away.

it hits 430 pm as i walk out of goodwill.  my coworkers text me about grabbing drinks. for a split second i almost text back yes. a car comes by and spashes water all over me. ” no sorry, i still need to pack frantically” and then of course, i remember..

and CUT

Here's to a not-so-symbolic end to a new beginning. Indeed, there's more to the story above but probably would be too boring for a public outlet... thus shared in a private blog with my best college friends... and...

instead, I'll post something a bit less glum and but probably still somewhat thought provoking.

with the acquisition of my iphone 4s about a  year ago, i've hopelessly fallen into addiction to the glorified, and yes remarkably grand instagram.

snap here snap there, a quick flip of filters. wow, it looks amazing. an end result that would have taken me at least 20 minutes fiddling around on photoshop to look equally as vintage.

But it dawned on me today. Technology has the positives of creating an 'end result' in an instant.  however, is this simplification really aiding to our civilization or is it just allowing mass creation of diverse artwork with no actual skill involved?  What is skill anymore? what is talent?

Back in early highschool and middle, I took pride in learning html from scratch... then
with the advent of 'what you see is what you get' editors and suddenly with a click of a button, a new page is born. I'm bitter, but its ok. I got a bite of the other side of the cookie too .. with the new instagram video... i am now such a pro... videographer.  =)

anyway.  there really is no point in this entry.  rather, a beginning to more consistent entry publishings on this blog. Thanks to the procurement of a very expensive piece of paper also known as the diploma, I am back from my hiatus. ah such bliss. until next time.

March 25, 2013

I'lll be graduating in 2 months.

In Boston, it's the season where leaves turn pink. The change of seasons can metaphorically translate to the unraveling of a new chapter in my life.... or will it?  In less then two months I'll be graduating...

Next Stop...... ?

December 30, 2012

This will make you jealous of my NYE

The next best thing to getting your wisdom teeth pulled during vacation, is getting your teeth pulled one day before New Years Eve. I was fortunate enough to undergo this procedure today. I suggest everyone do the same. Decide on a whim one day before your molar extraction, as yours truly did. (aided by the fact that our family dentist would be on vacation.. and the next available appointment day would be too close to my journey back to school)

Basically, I didn't realize what was up until I was already lying on the dental chair this morning, with my mouth open, and the dental assistant meticulously applying numbing goo on my gums.

And then it really dawned on me. "holy shit, I can't feast tomorrow night then" 

but that was quickly interrupted by a plying sound and pressure. 

Suppressing that internal struggle of "this is freaky, but I am also almost a quarter century old so I cannot freak out" wasn't too easy, so I focused on worse situations like the news segment I saw where this lady in china went to get 4 teeth pulled, and the dentist pulled out 16.. like really?

but I digress. I just had my two upper babies taken out. and apparently I don't have roots at all for bottom molars... *thank god*  

But this entry isn't about my experience.  It's about attachment. After the procedure, my dentist popped something into a tiny blue cup handed it to me and said "here are ur teeth, you can bleach them if you want"

I peered in and saw the two ugliest things I have ever seen in my whole life. 
And I was utterly fascinated by them.

I'll spare anyone pictures... but let's say now I can SOMEWHAT understand the utterly repulsive newfeed image a friend posted a while ago of their pulled-out wisdom teeth. Because... these little bloody- ceramic like pieces... with miniscule slivers of gum still around it, are GROWN BY ME.

ok. that was like.... really really weird.

So after the procedure, my family proceeded to go to two different appliance retailers to search for a new fridge, go grocery shopping at two places, and get jack-in-the-box.  All the whiles, i'm sitting in teh car, spitting into a plastic bag and changing gauze every 30 min.  Because..... other than the fact that you can't eat, it's not that bad.  Even now.. like 8 hours later, all I feel is just a dull numb.  I haven't even taken a painkiller yet. 

Maybe I just have lame nerves or something.... but I'll still keep my fingers crossed for tomorrow.

December 29, 2012


my mother’s class did a gift exchange with another class during Halloween. presents for presents. and on the day of the exchange,  20 crinkling bags of treats from my mother’s class were presented to their neighboring class. imagine! 20 beaming eyes and thoughts bursting with anticipation on what their fellow friends next door would give to them in return… but…..to much dismay, the other teacher presented, one jar of jellybean for my mother’s whole class to share.  Luckily, with her years of experience, my mom had an emergency stash of treats saved for desperate situations.  Soon enough, tiny hands were each grasping their own share of sweets, enough to make their taste buds sing.

and this is also why I saw this jar of jellybeans on the living room table this winter break.

I dove for it when I saw it, then the 14 year old in me held me back. I looked up, and sheepishly asked mother for permission to eat it. No. she says. ok.  3 hours later, I give another try.  This time my mom asks. “why?”

I don’t know, I always had a fondness for jelly beans. I think they are like a candy cheatsheet…. for indecisive people.  You have 1 bean that represents a whole candy flavor. orange for orange candy, bubblegum for bubble gum, pina colado. popcorn for popcorn. granted the taste of other candies are not completely replicable… but definitely close enough. Think… it takes 7 minutes to finish a strawberry flavored dumdum lollypop, in 7 minutes you can have at least 4 DIFFERENT flavored jelly beans…. it’s like going to the international exhibit in Disneyworld to see the most spectacular landmarks of the world all in ONE day. saving airfare, living cost and most importantly time.

imagine a world without jelly beans. the horror!

and after my explanation. she said ok. 

May 24, 2012

I’m on a plane. Random Thoughts.

Currently, I’m several thousand feet off the ground.  Yes, this does metaphorically elaborate my elation in returning home after 6 months of the east coast.  However, my initial sentence also applies in a literal manner. Hello blog again, I’m flying on American Airlines, heading east to west. I’ve kicked off my oxford boots in anticipation of the long 5 hour ride and gotten quite cozy in my 2 by 3 space. 

For the 8347392th time I praise the convenience (and presence) of my gorgeous slick ultrabook.  Obviously, when (battery life) is at stake, each second of technology usage is greatly savored.   For about 1.3 hours, I peruse though a study protocol. Work. Telephone. Conference. Call. Tomorrow. At. Eleven.   Clearly my  20 day ‘summer’ comes with big quotes. I really like it though. I feel…… productive at life.  The flight attendant comes down the aisle… pushing his cart… briskly? As he walks closer. “food and snacks for sale”.  Forrr sallleeeee.

No wonder.

How much is that pastrami sandwich? The man behinds me asks “10 dollar sir”.   Wow. And yet he gets it.   The Stomach is all-powerful.  We do all we can to satisfy it.

People say the brain is the command center of the body. I think the stomach is the command center of LIFE.
Honestly, think about it.  We live to earn money, and we earn money to eat, we eat to satisfy our stomachs.  When we are hungry, the stomach sends signals to our brain to tell us to eat.  Homeless people skip on the working part, and go to food shelters to eat. … eating to satisfy the aches in their tummies.

Food is what makes the world go round.

The same man laughs obnoxiously loud behind me at the ongoing movie.  He interrupts my epiphany.   I look up at a screen, and see two bearded man chatting.  Without the $2 headphones, I do not get it and am clearly missing out.  Dialogue is an amazing thing.

I look to the left out my window. DO I SEE THE MOON?  On further squint.. alas, it is the tail light of the airplanes’ wings.  I got excited for nothing.

The flight attendant with the actual free drinks finally comes within my proximity.  Milk ginger ale or orange.  Today is Wednesday…. which means I do not eat healthy.  GIngerale it is.

I ask her for only a little bit of ice, thinking that the ginger ale would be poured into my cup and thus allot me with a sufficient amount of liquid to last me throughout the rest of the flight.   Surprisingly, she gives me an empty cup with two lonely ice cubes and the can of soda.

Immediately I glance at the snoring mother daughter combo next to me and visualize many unacceptable ways to claw my way out into the aisle without waking them up when nature calls.

Should I take the can?


Excuse me now as I enjoy my $170 gingerale and free plane ride back to sunny California.

May 20, 2012

NYR interm check part I

One measly entry since the start of 2012 is really quite unacceptable.  School and work is the culprit. Luckily, as of 1 week ago, I am officially halfway done with my master’s degree! whoopee!
I actually have several topics in mind, but I figure the most appropriate first entry after such a long hiatus should be an interim check on my New Year’s Resolutions made approximately 6 months ago.  Without further adieu, let me begin.

1. Sleep at least 6.5 hours each night
The amount of sleep MAY approximate out to 6.5 hours a night each week; however it usually patterns something along the lines of this: Sleep a whopping amount the first few days of the week, come Wednesday “oh shits! Everything is due!" then followed by two days of misery squeezing the last bit of information out of my brain during the wee hours of the morning. Luckily summer is here, and with that comes the perk of a slumber buffet. All you can sleep. No, actually not really at all. This must be worked upon. Also my brain has somehow trained itself to ignore 5 of the 10 alarm options available.  How come this oddly reminds me of the workings of antibiotic resistance bacteria? Is there such thing is Alarm resistance? Why am I rambling? Intervention is needed.
Conclusion: 1/2 Satisfied

2. Budget money wisely using Mint.com
My budgeting equivalents to a roller coaster ride. During good months, I budget like crazy, and consistently visit Mint.com while commending myself over my thriftness.  During bad (splurge-filled) months, I barely record any purchases. Notice the guilt relieving pattern?  Unfortunately, I recently discovered the extreme comfort and chic style of Zara apparels.  While my closet has been getting quite cozy, my monetary conscious obviously, is spacing out… a lot
Conclusion: 1/2 Satisfied

3. Get a part time job & 4. Settle down what I am supposed to do this summer
5 hours a day each week, I stare at two elongated monitors slaving over data. No... It’s actually really interesting, and I am extremely content at my current academic state. I love my job and I am consistently amazed that I found such an interesting field.  
Conclusion: Check! Check!

Stay tuned for New Year Resolutions #5-11 next time!

January 07, 2012

New Year Resolution 2012

  1. Sleep at least 6.5 hours each night
  2. Budget money wisely using Mint.com
  3. Get a part time job
  4. Settle down what I am supposed to do this summer
  5. Decrease the amount of time spent youtube browsing and online chatting. 
  6. Reach Yelp elite... which means I need to be more consistent with writing yelp reviews. 
  7. Write at least 2 blog entries a month.
  8. Get at least 3 hours of good studying done each day.
  9. Be consistent with my skincare regimin
  10. Focus constantly during class.
  11. 3 full glasses of plain water each day

December 18, 2011

The one where I am all over the place.

I've been sitting here for about ten minutes struggling over what to write. Boston you have sucked the literary muse out of me... or... perhaps it is the guilty conscious lingering over my head counting down the hours until I begin my whirlwind of exams. Two on Tuesday, Two on Wednesday, One on Thursday.

I could riddle off hundreds of reasons why I didn't complete my projected list of studying today, but it can easily be summed up in one sentence. Procrastination got the best of me.... including me presently (hence why I am on this blog).

But that’s okay, I still have 24 hours to prove four months of work. A bit of positivity can hopefully leverage me through tonight... I don't think I'll crash anytime soon as I have stayed up until four for four CONSECUTIVE nights.  (what a mouthful).   Jaw drop.   Anyway here is a little note to myself in the future.

Hi Gina,
I hope you did well on your  exams.
Hope you're happy because I sure am envious of you right now... being able to do whatever you wish.
Pay your January rent.
Love, Gina

And here are some recent food pictures I took while dining at Boston Cafeteria

meh.. I'm going to make some instant noodles.

December 03, 2011

Keeping my sugars high but guilt low.

School stress, studying, social life and impending deadlines are recipes for breakouts.  Intermix that with my everlasting taste for sweets.   Tis the season.  I'm sad to say my skin has recently been in a somewhat loosing battle.  So I'm starting to take action not just topically, but regulating my intakes as well. Here are a mashup of fast ways I try to curb my sweet tooth with skin health(ier) foods.  I am a extremely lazy person in terms of food preparation. IE. I will refuse to whip up a healthy delicious shake  because I don't want to spend the time taking out the frozen fruit, blending them and then spend 3 minutes cleaning the blender... so terrible.

- Vitamins. vitamin C. gummy vites. I look forward to taking them each day like 'candy', obviously the recommended dosage per day.
- Hot green tea with honey (with lemon?) instead of hot chocolate or coffee.
- Frozen grapes taste like frozen juice pops
- Citrus. This may be biased but I absolutely love oranges and orange juice.  These can curb my juice cravings.
- Thought process on buying that expensive basket of strawberries.   Is 3 dollars worth it?  Now think, are 3 dollars worth of dryers peppermint limited edition ice cream worth it? (AUGHHH MIND DILEMMA) Choose the berries.
- Organic unsweetened apple sauce and sweeten them with honey. Add a dash of cinnamon for extra flavoring.
- Fruit Yogurt on toasted bagels instead of cream cheese or jam.
- Use mint to "freshen" up your drinks instead of relying on carbonation.  ie. Lemons, Mint leaves and Honey makes a delicious cold drink.

Basically, I revolve around fruit and using honey as a sugar substitute. These may or may not be the "right way" persay. But  it keeps my taste buds satisfied and my senses guilt free. I am always down to new ideas so let me know if any of you have skin healthy ways of curbing your sweet tooth as well!