Tuesday, February 28, 2012

February Favorites 2012

Wow, where did this month go? Lately I seem to ask myself this question every month. I guess it's true what they say; the older you get, the faster time flies. But I'm only 26! It shouldn't be going this fast already.

Although the month of love was a short month, it was long enough for me to discover some new favorites. The cold winter in Taiwan has done nothing for my chapped lips, and after trying Lush's Bubblegum lip scrub, I fell in love with it. It smells amazing, and it is, in fact, edible. Even though I won't eat it along with my dead lip skin... Eeew! 

The past month I've been using my Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue perfume almost everyday. (Someone is definitely ready for spring!). Lancôme Hypnôse Drama has always been my favorite mascara, but this month I decided to try Lancôme Virtuôse Black Carat mascara for the first time. Just as I suspected, it's just as wonderful, and is definitely one of my all time favorites now.

Pinterest. Oh, Pinterest. My new favorite "time waster". If you are familiar with this website, you'll know how addictive it is. If not, don't even go there! It's too late for me, but save yourself!

I've read a lot of rave reviews for Benefit's High Beam highlighter, and couldn't wait to try it out myself. Definitely worth it! I think it will be even better in the summer when my skin is a little darker.

Last, but not least, is Dove's Go Fresh body wash. If you're anything like me, you can stand in the store, forever, smelling all the different scents. When I smelled this one, I had to get it immediately; Nectarine and White Ginger. Do yourself a favor and pick this one up next, it's awesome.

That's it for February, my friends. What were your favorites this month?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Let's get freaky

We all have them; our own special little quirks and habits. It makes us unique, even lovable. Or sometimes, a complete freak. I, for one, have many habits that might seem weird, or even crazy, to others. The question is; how high does my freak flag fly?

On second thought, don’t answer that... let’s say it’s a rhetorical question. Although, sometimes I wonder... The Boyfriend seems to think that certain things I do are weird, and vice versa. You decide:

1. When I get home, I can’t relax until I’ve washed the dishes and put everything that’s lying around back in its specific place. The Boyfriend will always say to me: “Come on, sit down first and relax. You can do it later.” I really can’t.

2. Under no circumstances can I wear mismatched socks.

3. I have to be early for appointments. I get really anxious if I realize I might be late for something, even if it’s just meeting up with a friend. I'd rather not go at all then.

4. I have to sleep in pajamas, and definitely not the dress kind. Also, I can’t get a good night’s rest with socks on.

5. I can’t have unread emails in my inbox. It needs to be read, deleted or marked as Spam. I also can’t have unread messages or notifications on my Facebook.

What do you think; are my quirks and habits “normal” or a little weird? Come on, share some of your odd habits and quirks. We all know you have them!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Biggest Pet Peeve

One of my favorite bloggers, Jenna over at Recently Roached, had me in stitches after reading her latest blog post about her biggest pet peeve. I was feeling good, giggling to myself, until I thought about MY biggest pet peeve, and my mood changed a teeny tiny bit.

See, there are many things that annoy me in this world and can get me ranting on for hours, but there is one thing that I can absolutely not stand; it makes me want to pull out my hair, one follicle at a time. Deep breaths, everyone

Something I like to call, Annoying Text Language. “? u do lst nite? OK, c u l8tr” “ Yes, I totally get that you have to shorten words, or omit them completely, and create similar grammar sins, to type your text really fast or to fit everything you want to say into one text. But there is absolutely no reason why you have to type like that in an email, on Facebook or anywhere else for that matter.

I know you might be thinking; Yes, that is annoying, but it’s only teeny boppers with their new cell phones that type like that. Uhm, no. Unfortunately, it’s not. I’ve received emails, and I’ve seen disastrous status updates on Facebook, from “respected” adults that made me cringe more than a live Avril Lavigne performance.

Cn u evn ndrstnd ? Im wrting 2 u hre? When did it become okay to write like that? This Annoying Text Language is by far my biggest pet peeve. It’s annoying, unnecessary and to be honest, it makes you sound like a complete imbecile and that you haven’t graduated from high school.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

TAG! You're it!

Ruby, over at Girlfriends are like shoes, tagged me to do this post. So, in the words of Barney Stinson; Challenge accepted!

The Rules:
  1. Post the rules.
  2. Post 11 fun facts about yourself.
  3. Answer the questions that the tagger has set for you.
  4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag.
  5. Tag 11 people and link them to your post.
  6. Let them know you've tagged them.
My 11 fun facts:
  1. I grew up in a small town (population 13 000) in South Africa, and now live in Taipei City (population 3 000 000) in Taiwan.
  2. I love the smell of books. For me, there's nothing quite like taking a whiff from a new book. I also love reading and collecting them.
  3. All three my siblings live abroad; my sister and one of my brothers live in Dubai (UAE) and my oldest brother lives on a cruise ship. My parents still live in South Africa.
  4. I can easily get addicted to almost any TV show.
  5. I met The Boyfriend three years ago at an Oasis concert in Taiwan.
  6. I teach English as a second language. English is also my second language. My first language is Afrikaans, and there are about 7 million native speakers in the world, mostly in South Africa and Namibia.
  7. I love high heels, but I hate wearing them.
  8. I want to see as much of the world as possible; so far I've been to South Africa, Namibia, Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, USA, United Arab Emirates and the Philippines. I hope to add more this year.
  9. I'm an obsessive list maker.
  10. I am a total dog person.
  11. For some reason, unknown to me, I strongly dislike Nicholas Cage and Mandy Moore.
My questions to answer:
  1. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? My teeth! But I recently got braces, so it's changing as we speak.
  2. What is your favorite song? And why? I really love "Firework" from Katy Perry. It's just one of those feel-great songs.
  3. What is one of your worst habits? Telling The Boyfriend what to do, even though he's a grown man.
  4. What do you value most about your friends? Their unique personalities and sense of humor.
  5. Which do you prefer; dogs or cats? No-brainer! Dogs.
  6. Are you truly happy with your life? Yes I am. I'm very blessed.
  7. What is your favorite TV show? At the moment, "How I met your mother". Of all time, "Friends".
  8. In your opinion, what is the best way to spend a day off? Sleeping in, eating a lot and spending the day outside with The Boyfriend.
  9. If you could be anyone for a day, who would you want to be? Someone with a ridiculous amount of money. I'll use that money to buy food and build houses for people in need.
  10. Which social cause do you personally feel strongest about? Marriage equality. I don't understand why gay couples can't get married in most countries.
Your questions to answer:
  1. What did you eat for breakfast today?
  2. What is one thing you do when you’re by yourself that you wouldn’t do with other people around?
  3. What is your guilty pleasure?
  4. Do you prefer coffee, tea or neither? Why?
  5. Do you believe in “love at first sight”? Why?
  6. Are you subscribed to anyone on YouTube? Whose videos do you watch religiously?
  7. Can you do anything “weird” with your body?
  8. What was the last book you read?
  9. Do you prefer winter or summer? Why?
  10. If you can travel to any country this year, where would you go?
  11. What is your favorite time of the day? Why?
I tag:
  1. Cherry from A day with me
  2. Liesl from Fabulous fashions 4 sensible style
  3. Lovely Tan from It's a lovely day
  4. Jasmine from La Bella Vita
  5. That Brunette One from That Brunette One
  6. Robin from Carolina Robin
  7. Kristina from Pennies from Heaven
  8. Fashionista Era from Fashionista Era
  9. Kinga from Lady K
  10. Remy from Cinnamon Bubbles
  11. Anna from Moments of Libra

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

I just love LOVE, and therefore I am a big fan of Valentine's Day. Even though I believe that every day should be like Valentine's Day, I think it's nice to have one day out of the year to take a step back and take a good look at everything in your life and appreciate the love and blessings you have. 

I'm not just talking about the love of your significant other, but also the unconditional love of your family, your friends and your pets.

A very Happy Love Day to everyone!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Day 60 - A picture of something you’re excited about

Last week, The Boyfriend and I bought our plane tickets to Japan and will be visiting Tokyo in April for our three-year anniversary. I am extremely excited to visit Japan! I can't believe I've been living in Asia for four years and I've never been there.

We are planning on visiting all the famous sites and areas and to make a trip to Mount Fuji. The Cherry Blossoms will also be blooming at that time, so I'm sure we'll visit some parks to appreciate it. And if we have time, we'll do some shopping.

Have you ever been to Tokyo? Any recommendations of must-see places, the best shopping areas and some good restaurants? 

Don't forget to check back here in April for my Japan photo diary!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Day 59 - A picture of a random item that you own

Two years ago, as I was getting ready to fly to Taiwan and move in with The Boyfriend for the first time, Mom and I were shopping and came across this sign which said: "All I ask is that you treat me no less than a Queen!". Mom immediately picked it up and bought if for me to take with me to Taiwan.

Obviously, Mom has very high standards for her daughters' boyfriends. I'm sure this sign was not just for him, but also for me, to remember how a girl should be treated at all times. 

The Boyfriend laughed, with a tiny hint of nervousness, when I showed it to him. I now keep it in our closet where he can see it everyday. 

I know you're wondering; Well, does he treat you no less than a queen? For sure! He is one of the most loyal, honest, generous and loving men I know. I'm pretty sure he treats me well, not just because of the sign... or maybe it does play a little role in it. In that case; Thanks for the sign, Mom!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Day 58 - A picture of your favorite animal

After seeing this YouTube video (*warning, the language in this video might offend some), the Honey Badger definitely gained some points with me, because evidently, the Honey Badger doesn't give a sh*t, and I like that. But in the end, I really can't love any other animal more than I love dogs.

I just love them all, with their cute little faces and unique personalities. If you've been following my blog for a while, you already know about my obsession with big, fluffy dogs; the Old English Sheepdog, Labradoodle and Giant Poodle being my absolute favorites.

I grew up with Poodles and adore their silly personalities, intelligence and playfulness. Of course, I immediately fell in love with, the fairly new breed, Labradoodles. I honestly can't wait for the day when I can bring one home with me.

You have no idea how hard it is not to post a hundred photos of cute dogs in this post right now, but I will hold myself back. Instead, watch one of my favorite YouTube videos of a Labradoodle. So cute!

Which animal is your favorite, and why?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Day 57 - A picture of your favorite holiday

No surprise here; if you have been following my blog for a while, you'll know the answer to this one. My favorite holiday, by far, is Christmas! Although, I'm actually a fan of most holidays, western and eastern, especially if I get a day off work to celebrate it.

Since moving to Asia, I've learned there are, in fact, many more holidays than just Christmas, Halloween and Easter. In Taiwan they celebrate Chinese New Year, Moon Festival, Lantern Festival, Dragon Boat Festival and there's even a holiday called Tomb Sweeping Day.

Holidays usually bring families and loved ones together, which is my favorite part. I don't really care about all the other things that go along with it, as long as I can spend it with people I love, I'm happy! Actually, I take that back; I do care a little, just a little, about having an awesome costume for Halloween and getting something from my Christmas wishlist. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Valentine's Day 2012 - Gift ideas for HER

Guys, don't fret. I know Valentine's Day is coming up and you probably only just realized that. If you're planning on getting your lady friend a nice gift, you've come to the right place. I compiled a list of gift ideas that I'm sure your girl will love! You’re welcome.

1. Candles
Top to bottom: Diptyque's Rosa Mundi, Yankee Candle's True Rose and Jo Malone's Red Roses
I don't know about other girls, but I love candles. It feels weird to me if there's not a candle burning in my apartment at any moment. Definitely check out Diptyque, Yankee Candle and Jo Malone for some beautiful candles.

2. Lingerie
Victoria's Secret Valentine's Day 2012 Collection
She will love this gift, and so will you... Buying lingerie can be tricky though, and you could easily end up in hot water. If you are not 110% sure about her size, rather give her a voucher or go shopping with her. Victoria's Secret and La Senza would be good options.

3. Flowers
Pink Lilies
If you're opting for flowers, try something other than the classic red rose. Personally, I love Lilies. They are pretty and smell amazing!

4. Personalized candy
Personalized M&M's
I think this is such a cute gift! You can personalize your M&M's here.

5. Perfume
Top left: Vera Wang's Lovestruck    Top right: Versace's Bright Crystal
Bottom: DKNY's Be Delicious Cherry Blossom
You can't go wrong with perfume. It can be overwhelming choosing one, so to be safe, make sure you know what type of scent she likes; fruity, floral or musky? You can get some ideas at The Perfume Shop.

6. Bath & body products
LUSH Valentine's Day 2012 
LUSH has some amazing choices for Valentine's Day this year. I suggest you go to the store and sniff out a gift yourself.

7. Limited Edition hair tools
GHD Limited Edition Valentine's Day hair straightener 
I always get excited about limited edition products. I think this red GHD straightener would be an awesome gift.

8. Jewelry
Tiffany & Co. Valentine's Day 2012 Collection
What would a Valentine's Day gift idea list be without some Tiffany's? Check out their beautiful collection this year.

9. Spa voucher
A day of pampering for the two of you would be very romantic. If that's not your thing, get her a spa voucher to go for a massage or facial.

10. DVD box set
Top: FRIENDS Complete DVD box set
Bottom: Sex and the City Complete DVD box set
How about getting her the complete DVD box set to her favorite TV Show? FRIENDS and Sex and the City would be my first choices!

I hope you got some good ideas, and enjoy Love Day with your love!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentine’s Day 2012 – Gift ideas for HIM

What are the odds of meeting that one person that you want to spend the rest of your life with? No, really; what are the odds? So you found him? Lucky girl! Well, Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to celebrate it, and to spoil your man.

If you aren’t still totally broke from Christmas and want to get him something nice this year, here are some ideas:

1. Underwear
Calvin Klein
Underwear is always a great gift, especially if you know it's time for your man to part with his favorite pair that's full of holes. Calvin Klein would be the perfect choice.

2. Perfume/ Cologne
Top left: Armani Code    Top right: Issey Miyake
Bottom: Burberry Brit 
I love my man to smell good, so perfume is a must! The Perfume Shop has a big selection of designer scents.

3. Chocolate body paint
Kama Sutra Lover's Body Paint
I'm sure your man would appreciate this delectable gift! Chocolate body paint is sold in many stores, and you can also buy it online here.

4. Headphones
MONSTER Beats by Dr Dre
I know The Boyfriend loves his Beats headphones, so I would really recommend this. Check out all the different styles and sizes on the Beats by Dr Dre website.

5. Sexy Time Dice
"Get Lucky" dice
Feeling playful? This might be the perfect gift for him. (And for you...). Get your hands on the "Get Lucky" dice.

6. Chocolates
Godiva's Valentine's Day Romantic Heart
The Valentine's Day classic! And for good reason; everyone loves chocolate. Spoil him with a box from Godiva.

7. Concert tickets

Get him concert tickets to see his favorite band or artist. Get two tickets, and who knows, maybe he'll invite you.

8. Personalized board game
"Lovopoly" board game
This might be a little too corny for some, but I think it's actually a cute idea. You can personalize your own board game here.

9. Watch
DIESEL Men's watch collection 2012
Diesel has a great selection of men's watches.

10. Gadget
Apple iPod Nano
You know how men are with their gadgets and you can't go wrong with an Apple product.

Do you have some other gift ideas? Please share in the comments.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Day 56 - A picture of something that makes you happy.

Nothing makes me happier than being on this beach, which is about a 15 minutes drive from my parents' house in South Africa. Whenever I'm home with my family, we always go to Arniston. I think it is definitely one of the most beautiful beaches in South Africa.

This is my happy place. We'll either lay out in the sun on the soft white sand, go swimming or go for long walks along the coast. This beach gets packed over the summer time, but for the rest of the year, we basically always have it all to ourselves.

I have many happy memories of this place. From being a little girl building sandcastles and catching small fish with a net in a rock pool, to coming here with my friends during summer holidays and spending the whole day swimming and playing sports, to enjoying it with my family when I go visit them. 

This is a very special place for me, and it's true what they say; there's no place like home. I can't wait to feel the sand under my feet again!

Follow me on Instagram: @_liesl_

Monday, February 6, 2012

Day 55 - A picture of the last movie you saw in theaters.

I'm a big fan of these ensemble cast movies, so when I saw the preview for New Year's Eve I was very excited for its release. I went to see it with The Boyfriend some time in December last year and I couldn't believe my luck that he actually agreed to go and watch a romantic comedy with me; his one true hate in life.

I thought the movie was enjoyable, but I would probably not watch it again if I didn't have to. It was good for a date night movie though. 

I would say my favorite aspects of this movie were the all star cast and the setting, New York City. My least favorite part was that it was kind of sad at some parts; I really don't need to cry on date night. Have you seen this movie? What did you think of it?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Day 54 - A picture of the one thing you would bring if you were stranded on a deserted island.

 In my head, the deserted island I would be stranded on is the exact island from the movie, The Blue Lagoon, and The Boyfriend is stranded with me, instead of that drunk fat guy that drinks himself into oblivion. Which means that we will have plenty of fresh water and fruit to survive on.

Also, obviously we will have the skills to build the same, magnificent double story shelter they did in the movie. Was I the only one that thought that their setup in the movie wasn't that bad? Not even bad at all. Being stranded on a beautiful island with your man, with no animals trying to eat you and no other real danger, well, that sounds pretty amazing to me.

Now, the one thing that I would bring with me is a shipping container filled with shampoo, conditioner, face products, razors, scissors, body lotion, deodorant, sunblock, scissors and nail clippers. (I'm pretty sure Brooke Shields' character in The Blue Lagoon had her private stash there behind a tree somewhere, her hair was just way too shiny and clean throughout the movie.)

With my shipment of girly necessities, life on this deserted island would be perfect! I'm sure we'll be able to fashion some kind of coconut phone to call our families.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Day 53 - A picture of someone you think is hot

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2011
Other than my obvious choices, my hot man and mister Ryan Reynolds, who could be hotter than the Victoria's Secret models? Yes, I'm a girl, but I'm allowed to say what's true; they are frickin' hot! Every year I watch the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, and love it (I'm sure not for the same reasons The Boyfriend and other men around the world love it...).

Yes, they are annoyingly perfect, and I'm insanely jealous, but I enjoy watching these ladies because they inspire me to take better care of myself and to be more confident. And those costumes? Beautiful!

Dear Santa, all I want for Christmas are Adriana Lima's eyes, Miranda Kerr's booty, and Candice Swanepoel's lips and cheekbones. Thank you so much! Sincerely, Liesl.

Left to right: Adriana Lima, Miranda Kerr and Candice Swanepoel
Which Victoria's Secret model do you think is the hottest?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Day 52 - A picture of your favorite sport

South African rugby team (Springboks) scoring a try

South African cricket team (Proteas) playing Sri Lanka
After finishing high school, I haven't been big on participating in sports, although I do enjoy exercising. Throughout my school career I dabbled in many sports like athletics, netball, swimming, field hockey, ballroom dancing and even shooting (at a target! Not people or animals.)

I love watching sports though. I cannot call myself a true South African if I didn't. Rugby, cricket and soccer is huge in South Africa, and I love watching our national teams, the Springboks (rugby) and the Proteas (cricket) play. A big rugby match is the perfect reason for all the South African expats in Taiwan to come together, have a "braai", drink some beers, speak Afrikaans and sing the national anthem.

Other sports I enjoy watching, usually on TV, are gymnastics, ballroom dancing, tennis and swimming. I also love ballet, although I'm not entirely sure if that's considered a sport or an art.

Do you still play any sports? Or are you also more of a sports observer like me? 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Day 51 - A picture of your dream car

Range Rover Evoque 2012
I'm sure most people would choose a fast sports car as their dream car. But for me, being the not-so-good driver that I am, and the fact that I'm sure I would cause some kind of accident on the road, I would prefer to be in a bigger vehicle. Hence the love for a big and sturdy SUV.

Ever since the first pictures of the new Range Rover Evoque were revealed, I've been drooling over it. I've always been a big fan of Range Rovers, and for the longest time the Range Rover Sport was my favorite. But there's just something about the Evoque that I love. Maybe because it's the most "environmentally friendly" out of the Range Rover selection, or maybe just because it's pretty.

As I'm sure I'll live in Taipei, with it's convenient public transport system, for a loooong time, I won't be in the market for any car any time soon. Also, with the limited parking spots and the size of this car, it wouldn't be the most practical way to go. Yeah, so that's my reason for not getting my dream car (not the fact that it would cost me an arm and a leg and probably other body parts, too.)

Range Rover Evoque interior
What's your dream car?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Day 50 - A picture of your most frequented place

The school where I work
I guess my most frequented place would have to be my workplace, wouldn't it? I’m there for nine hours every day, five days a week.

I teach English as a second language at a public elementary school in Taipei, Taiwan. I’m one of those freaks who enjoy going to work, because I think my co-workers are awesome, and my students, well most of them, are adorable.

My job is a little different than most teachers’. I don’t have a traditional classroom, but instead teach in real life scenario classrooms. We have a restaurant, hotel room, airplane cabin, supermarket, clinic and even a movie theater.

Students in Taiwan don’t get that many opportunities to speak English, so here we provide them with an environment where they can practice the English that they are already familiar with. As you can imagine, it’s a lot of fun teaching in this setting and sometimes it doesn’t even feel like work.


Airplane cabin

Hotel room

Hotel lobby

Traffic zone
So that's my most frequented place. What's yours?


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