Farewell Google Reader!


As I'm sure you've heard by now, Google Reader (aka Google Friend Connect) is officially shutting down tomorrow :\ This sucks since GR is how I've been keeping up with blogs since 2005 (christ I feel old).....

But change is good, especially in this case because it forced me to start using Bloglovin, which is seriously (imho) far superior to Google Reader. You can import all your GR blogs with one click and has one awesome feature that GR lacked - a good MOBILE APP. Bloglovin's mobile app is really nice and makes it easy to check the blogs you are following (aka InsideOutElle :D :D :D) on your phone/tablet.

The transfer process only took a minute and I have to say, I've almost forgotten about GR already ;)

Two other things:

1.) Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway! I'll post the winner this week on this blog+Twitter. There's another giveaway on the horizon as well, so uhm, stick around? It's gonna be 'sweet' ^_~

2.) I'm truly moved by the supportive comments from my previous post about moving overseas. It really means a lot to me to know that there are people out there that understand why I'm doing this and are so happy for me ^_^ I confess I wrestled with a lot of doubts up to the very second I booked my one way ticket, but everything that has happened since (and your comments) has affirmed I am making the right decision for me. Thank you!

I defintely will be continuing to update this blog with lots of pics (prolly more often too!) and plan on doing a followup post elaborating on a few of the reasons I made this decision. For now, all I'll say is this - ever since I turned in my notice and realized there is truly no turning back....I've never felt so free.

Taking the Leap


Art Installation: Myeongbeom Kim

It's official - I'm moving to Korea in August. I'll be living on Jeju, an island where the dialect is so different from standard Korean that UNESCO classifies it as a distinct language. And not only is it considered an entirely different language, it's a 'critically endangered' language. So yeah, I'll be living on an island where the people speak a dying language - I am so excited.

I've never lived overseas before, though I've always dreamed of it, and honestly it still hasn't quite sunk in that I will be embarking on what I see as my first real adventure in exactly 31 days....!  Though I originally intended to live in Busan, the idea of living on an island where I don't speak the language and has a matrilineal society (yesshhh girl power ^_~) has grown on me greatly. It feels like I'm going to really going somewhere new and I can't even fathom what lies in store for me.

I wonder if I'm being a fool, quitting in this economy. The fact that I just left a full-time job to chase after a dream of living abroad, of traveling, and going on some kind of adventure with no particular plans of what I'll do afterwards is terrifying.


But I am more terrified of living like this: Idling away my youth in suburban America, commuting 2+ hours a day, staring at a computer 8+ hours a day, and falling asleep every night wondering what it would be like to wake everyday happy - no, thrilled - to be alive.

I feel like I've spent my whole life like those goldfish - always looking out onto this vast ocean, but afraid to leave the comforts of what is familiar while swimming circles in a tiny bowl.

So, I'm taking a leap - a leap out of my bowl (ehe couldn't resist) - a leap of faith.

ASOS July 4th Sale!


ASOS just marked down a bunch of items for their July 4th sale, so make sure to check your Saved Items to see if anything you've been oogling is included! I was hoping that they'd release a special promo code for the holiday, but no sign of one yet :P However, I DID find a 10% off + Free Shipping code (CHECKOUTTREAT) on RetailMeNot. To see coupon codes for other countries, go here.  Shameless plug - if you are interested in ordering, be sure to take a gander at my How to Get the Best Deal at ASOS post before you hit Confirm :)

For me, a bunch of items just got marked down (yesss!) so I think I'm going to go ahead and order my stuff with the code above.

Last thing, if you're feeling lucky, please enter my mini giveaway, which closes on June 30.

Happy Monday!
(an oxymoron if I ever saw one ^_~)

Giveaway: Pieces of Mexico


Whilst I was a-wandering Quintana Roo, I picked up a few bracelets from the Coral Negro Flea Market and an artisan shop near Chichén Itzá. I have a raccoon-like attraction towards shiny objects, so I could not resist bringing home a small cache of pretty jewelry...and I would like to share a few with you!

Thank you to all the peeps who suffered through my Mexico trip recap and take the time to stop by this little blog; I truly appreciate every person who reads my long-winded posts and leave comments sharing their thoughts - I read them all and they truly make every second spent sniffing makeup and snapping macro shots of food worth it :)

TO ENTER: Please fill in the form above; the first 3 steps are required, but the rest are optional.  Each prize is randomly assigned to the 2 winners, though feel free to leave a blog comment below regarding which you prefer and I'll do my best to accommodate it. This giveaway is open WORLDWIDE and both prize sets will come with other surprise goodies :)

This giveaway ends on June 30, 2013 12 AM EST.

The Best


The best donuts I ever tasted were the chocolate donut holes my dad smuggled to me from the adult church service. The best nachos I ever had were the ones from 7-11 that my dad would pick up for me after he came home from work at midnight. The best candies I ever ate were the ones my dad brought me whenever he went to a doctor's office or restaurant. No matter where he went or how tight money was, he would always bring home a little treat for me to eat.

He taught me how to swim, how to ride a bike, and carried my plump little self everywhere when I was going through my terrible two's and refused to walk anywhere outside the house (yes, I was that lazy and weird from the beginning >_<). He taught me how to dream big, the importance of family, and that happiness is found in the little things in life.

My 아빠 is the best dad in the world.

Happy Father's Day :)

Mexico 2013, Part 8: On the "Island of Women"


This is the view from the docks of Puerto Juárez, where we got on a little speedboat to go to Isla Mujeres or the Island of Women in Spanish.

While Isla Mujeres was easily one of the most beautiful places I've ever been, the experience of getting there was a royal pain. First off, the bus dropped us off in the middle of an intersection that was easily at least a mile away from Puerto Juárez. I'm not sure if it was because we got on the wrong bus (tho the port name was clearly written on the window) or that the driver just didn't give a damn, but we were literally dropped off in the middle of a small highway. It was also hot, dusty, and in a vaguely sketchy area (definitely not a tourist spot), but thankfully we were in broad daylight.

I'd rather not dwell on negatives at this point, so in a nutshell, after a 20+ minute walk and twiddling our thumbs for over 2 hours at the docks, we finally hopped on a little motor boat and were off!

How to Get the Best Deal at ASOS


I tend to go through distinct shopping phases: I'll fall in love with one store and obsessively shop there for about 6 months until I've curated a set of 5-6 'favorite' pieces. Then I won't shop there again for another year :)

Last year, I was all about Modcloth and The Limited. I filled out my work closet almost exclusively through these stores (with a smattering of tops from H&M and Forever 21). This year, I'm hooked on ASOS. Now that I am so over buying work appropriate clothes (no more blazers, pant suits, pencil skirts or blouses!), I'm happily indulging in the carefree, slightly edgy, trendy clothing selection at ASOS. My favorite brands are probably River Island, the in-house ASOS brand, and Freak of Nature, even though the latter is gothier than my usual style ^_^

A side affect of my shopping obsession means I become keenly aware of price fluctuations and tend to frantically research the best way to get a good deal. Thus in my quest to obtain more ASOS clothes, I have been stalking the shop like a madwoman tracking price changes, promo code patterns, and at long last...I think I have formulated the best way to get the BEST deal possible at ASOS.

I Dream of Sticky Rice


I've been obsessed with Thai food lately so the highlight of my weekend going to one of the most popular Thai restaurants in the DC/NoVA area - Sisters Thai in Fairfax, VA. The restaurant itself is gorgeous; as a "living room cafe" the atmosphere is homey, intimate, and serene. It's vintage chic done right with an abundance of floral pillows, bouquets of fresh flowers, beautiful photographs, and quirky collectibles. It really does feel like you're eating in someone's living room!

More Pimple Adventures :P


A couple days ago, I made a post about some very itchy pimples/infection/allergic reaction/whatever I was getting on my lower jaw and just wanted to update everyone on how Clindamycin has been working for me.

Mexico 2013, Part 7: Coco Bongo


Thanks for all the super supportive comments in my last post!  I'm happy to report that my acne is pretty much gone (for now). I had to resist picking at this HUGE scab that formed and did a painful pop-bleed-scab >_< but all in all, Clindamycin seems to have worked very well for me.  I'm piecing together a lovely collage of macro shots of the whole process and my overall experience; it's definitely the fastest working acne treatment I've ever used ^^

Anyway, on a more visually appealing note, Julie and I had the chance to check out Coco Bongo, a club/disco/show in downtown Cancun. Even if you don't like to dance, you should definitely check it out because the show was pretty awesome! Acrobats, dancers, and tons of references to pop culture (Batman, Beetle Juice, Michael Jackson)....it was a good time!

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