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As you may very well know by now, I have been cramming my arts & crafts box, which I lovingly named Pierre, with all sorts of washi & masking tapes. It’s gotten to the point where I can barely close Pierre‘s lid. I’ve been using washi & decorative masking tapes a lot more in my stationery crafts, & I’ve even used them in spicing up a few Christmas decorations. When I brought back my new batch of washi tapes from my Asia trip, I was partly thinking that Jian would only complain that I never use these tapes, & partly thinking about ways I could use my new tapes. So, I decided to come up with a DIY project & decorate a few of my blank notebooks.

I had got the inspiration from a vlogger on YouTube who showed off a custom hand-drawn notebook that her friend had designed for her. I was so inspired by this YouTube vlogger, but alas, I cannot draw to save my life. I can barely draw stick figures, no matter how much I practice. So…instead of drawing a custom cover art, I thought about using other materials, & that’s where my washi tapes came into play. Of course, using washi & decorative masking tapes to customize something really doesn’t need any explanation, but I figured I’d show you what I’ve done & how I did it.

DIY notebooks1

1. scissors, 2. blank notebook (or any object with a blank, smooth surface), 3. decorative masking tapes of your choice

Basically, there’s three materials being used, & approximately three steps to decorating the item of your choice. First you select the decorative tapes you want to use. Next, you cut a strip of tape to the desired length of the object. At this point in the project, you can also cut your tape into various shapes & patterns. For example, you can cut the ends of the strip of tape to look like a ribbon. Finally, you affix the tape to your object. Yes, that was entirely obvious, but maybe this will give someone out there in our world wide universe some inspiration for themselves.

And…Here is the final result.

DIY notebooks

I bought these three Moleskin notebooks from Target & tried to use as many of the washi tapes from my Asia trip as possible. The first notebook is a sweet pastel theme. You can’t really see it from my photo, but the notebook is supposed to be a soft pink. I used some fabric masking tapes with some paper washi tapes to give the cover a little bit of texture. I wanted to choose colors that would stand out, but would also match the pink notebook.

The second notebook is a khaki color. At this stage of my DIY project, I couldn’t think of any specific design or pattern, until I came across my London themed tape roll. The inspiration hit me like a ton of bricks & I turned this boring notebook into a London/UK theme. I was especially proud of myself when I was able to add in the part of the tape that says “This is London“. I thought it was very fitting (& very much a lucky coincidence) that the words ended up on the bottom corner of the cover.

The final notebook in the set is a lavender color. I had already decided on using my special edition Sanrio stamp tape. I was trying to get as many of the characters on the cover as possible. I even tried to fill the entire cover with the stamp tape, but the band of the tape was too wide, so I wasn’t able to fill the cover completely without some overlap, which would cover up the stamp design. So, I ended up leaving the top portion of the cover blank, which I think makes the design look even better than if I had filled the whole cover. Filling the whole cover would have made it look to busy anyway. I added a few of my own Hello Kitty stickers just for fun, & there you have it!

I feel like although I have a very creative imagination, & I’m pretty good at decorating cards & stationery, I’m not very good at executing arts & crafts projects or DIY projects. My intentions come from a good place, but I can never really quite make it take shape. So, for me to actually finish a DIY project & it looking pretty good, I’m quite happy. Maybe this is a sign for more arts & crafts projects in the future. Cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

“The Only One” by The Black Keys

The Only One

Alas, I didn’t cut this laser-cut figure myself. I bought it at Crate And Barrel, however, I did spruce this figure up a little with glitter, Mod Podge, & bows. I took a great item & made it even greater…LOL!

Let’s jump right into the extremely easy project. Here is a picture of the “before” figure:

The materials I used:
1. White glitter glue for the chest area
2. Black glitter glue for the eyes & accents
3. Gold glitter craft for the main body
4. Mod Podge to seal the glitter
5. Bow stickers for accents

I painted the fox figures with the glitter paint & glue, making tiny black dots for the eyes. I added a black bow sticker to make a male figure & a pink bow sticker to make a female figure. I finished it up by applying Mod Podge to seal in the glitter & keep it from flaking off. Easy, right?

Now, here is my finished project:

Aren’t they so cute? I love foxes… Cheers!

Today’s song of the day:
“Elenore by The Turtles

At home, we like to keep our fruits in a decorative bowl right on top of our kitchen counter.  Although the fruits may be pretty, they attract a lot of fruit flies.  While the fruit flies aren’t entirely harmful, they are annoying, especially during hot weather days.  We don’t have screens on our kitchen windows (we took them out to wash the windows & screens & haven’t put them back on since then).  So, we don’t open our kitchen windows, even in the summertime, for fear of inviting more flies into our kitchen.  However, those pesky fruit flies seem to know how to weasel their way back into our kitchen.  Luckily, we found these two separate articles from Apartment Therapy on how to make your own fly trap.  All it takes is a few simple materials & boom! Your fruit fly problem is practically over.

Here’s what you will need to make your own at-home fruit fly trap:

  1. fruit fly trap1a clean mason jar or cup
  2. apple cider vinegar
  3. a sheet of scrap paper (old newspaper will work too)
  4. dish soap
  5. small amount of fruit (optional)

Here are the steps of assembling your fly trap:

  1. Pour a small amount of apple cider vinegar into the bottom of the jar/cup, just enough to cover the bottom
  2. Roll the piece of paper into a cone-like shape, to create a funnel effect. Make sure you keep the shape loose enough so that it fits around the inside rim of the jar/cup.
    (Don’t push the paper all the way down to the bottom. You will need to leave a gap from the paper to the base, for the flies to get through.)
  3. Place a 1-2 small drops of dish soap to break up the surface tension made by the vinegar, so the flies won’t sit at the top.  The flies will go through the funnel, but will have no way out.
  4. Place the trap anywhere in the kitchen (or around your home) & watch the flies (pardon the pun) ‘drop like flies’.
  5. This is optional, but you can also add a small piece of fruit into the jar/cup to attract the flies faster.  We used dates at the bottom of our trap.

Here is the finished product:
fruit fly trap2

After making this at-home fruit fly trap, we have seen a steady decline of flies in our kitchen.  I would definitely recommend trying this out for yourself & see what happens.  Cheers.

DIY iPad extension

Of course this is not really a mind-blowing DIY idea.  No, I’m not painting & repurposing IKEA kitchen cabinets into a Mid-Century Modern drawer set.  Today, I’m going to share my little clever tech idea on how to make…AN EXTENSION CORD FOR THE IPAD!!!  No need to bust out the champagne here.  This is just a simple idea I stumbled upon one night when I was trying to charge my iPad AND use it while sitting in bed.  The charger kept popping out because the cord was too short.  The distance between the wall socket & my bed isn’t really that wide, but unless I’m sitting on the edge of my bed facing the wall, the cord is not going to reach the bed.  Then, I had a “lightbulb moment” where I thought about merging my Macbook laptop charger with my iPad charger (Thank you, Apple for your interchangeable & USB plugs).

I’m not sure if this will work for ALL Apple products, but this worked in my situation.

  1. I am using a standard 2010 Macbook charger & an iPad 2 charger with a flathead USB cord.
  2. For the laptop charger, remove the laptop piece of the plug & keep the long wall plug-in.  Then, for the iPad charger, remove the wall plug-in & keep the iPad piece.
  3. Connect the long wall plug-in to the iPad piece & Ta-Da!  You just made an extension cord for your gadget.

This isn’t the next great invention.  You won’t see me on the TV show Shark Tank hocking my new idea.  This is just a simple DIY project I wanted to share because I never thought of mixing & matching my gadget chargers to make one long extension cord.  Maybe this idea might work on other gadget chargers.  We’ll see…  Until then, cheers.

Today’s song of the day:
“I Wanna Get Better” by Bleachers

Today I dyed my own hair. All by myself.

Going to the hair salon can be a very time-consuming, expensive task. I’ve only gone to the hair salon to get my hair dyed twice in my life (I’ve been dying my hair for quite a few years). Both times were horrible experiences/money wasters. Ever since then, I’ve been dyeing my own hair at home. I’ve tried various brands (Loreal’s Feria, Garnier Nutrisse, etc.), but my favorites are two Japanese brands that I’ve found to work best on my hair: Dariya’s Palty & Mandom’s Lucido-L.

Here, I’ve chronicled my hair dyeing experience.

* Lúcido-L is my favorite take-home hair coloring brand.

* So far, it gives the best overall even coverage, & the end result actually matches the color swatch on the box.

* The contents of the take-home box kit…

* The items needed for the 2-step easy process.

* Add the coloring to the dye mix & shake the bottle thoroughly for approx. 1-2 minutes.

* Apply the dye evenly & let it sit for approx. 1 hour. Of course, you know the rest…rinse thoroughly until water runs clear. After rinsing out the excess dye, apply the nourishing hair mask (pink pouch) & rinse (like it’s a conditioner). I go one step further by washing my hair with shampoo & conditioner after I dye my hair…just to make sure my hair is washed clean.

* This time, I took the extra step of using this hair repair mask (Graham Webb Silk Repair Advanced Therapy Treatment). I received this hair repair packet from a friend who recently got married. She gave me this as part of a gift set for being a bridesmaid in her wedding. I wanted to try this hair mask & thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try it. My review: Eh~ It’s not bad, but in the end, it’s not my cup of tea.

* This is the end result… I’ll try to post a “before” picture to show you what my root color looks like. It’s not a dramatic change, but I really wanted to hide my roots while freshening up my hair color in a sort of subtle way. Cheers!


February 2018
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Monsieur Humphrey is making new friends. ☕️ 🍺
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#coffee #macchiato #espresso #Locanda #Mission #Valencia #SF #brunch #caffeine #HotBeverage #CoffeesOfInstagram #DrinksOfInstagram #WeekendMode #Saturday #chill #TakeItEasy #LineCamera @locandasf Punctuate your caffeine. ☕️
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