Today (or yesterday), I begin mini-medical school!

I learned all about the female pelvis last night. EXCITING STUFF, right?! I was filled with excitement at the thought of going to class. Those first class nerves and anxiety appeared. What if I get lost trying to find the classroom? (Let me remind you that it’s just downstairs from where I work.) Luckily, a co-worker and I are attending the class together and so I did not get lost. +1!

Light refreshments and drinks were provided and then we began the first lecture: ANATOMY. The takeaway from the night is that there are so many things that could go wrong with pregnancy. I’m a bit worried. And I started seeing random structures everywhere. Doesn’t this look like an evil bat?

via bodyawarenesspt.com

After lecture, we were taken to the anatomy lab for a hands-on experience. Despite my initial (a couple of seconds) disgust at the beef jerky’s and pork ribs on the table, I later found my curiosity and excitement to be able to explore the human body that I was the first one at the table for the gloves. And here I was… poking and prodding at everything (someone’s hip bone? someone’s armpit?), holding hearts and lungs and just engrossed in the aesthetics of the human body.

Have you ever worked with a cadaver? Have you been out of school for a long time? Do you yearn to take classes again? Or are you in school and yearn to be a free-spirited professional? 🙂 Happy hump day!

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Today, I wake up early and think.

Dearest friends bought me a livingsocial deal to make my own skincare products tonight (this shall be documented, of course), so I decided to take public transportation to work (I’ll omit the details). It really isn’t too terrible of a commute–about a little more than an hour of a trip. I hadn’t taken the metro in so long that I actually enjoyed it. The idea “distance makes the heart grown fonder” has appeared once again. 🙂 What is your commute to work/school/life like? What do you enjoy doing during that time? 

I recently received an email from a dear friend who is teaching in Indonesia and was impressed that she was able to wake up an extra hour early to be able to have some quiet thinking & reading time. While I do not have the ability to wake up that early, the hour-long commute gave me a moment and an excuse to have that alone time, to read or catch up on the morning news. Loved every second of it!

Waiting for the lovely, free circulator to carry me to the metro.

Exiting the duPont Circle Metro, long escalators scare me.

Waiting in line for the shuttle bus. It looks like a school-bus. I feel like a student, once again.

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Today, I bring you my ZARA finds and happy panda umbrella (strange instructions!)…

Sales are the best. They are my best friend. Do I mind that I’m a bit “behind” with the seasons? Nope. Not really. Today’s topic: ZARA. I first found out about ZARA (along with MANGO and UNIQLO) while I was studying/living in Udaipur & Beijing. Haha. In fact, my first Zara item was purchased in Udaipur… from a man who brought western brand  clothing and accessories from Mumbai (???) to Udaipur and sold it at a ridiculously cheap price in a shop somewhere I can’t remember. One of my the many ways Western culture crept into India’s way of life… at least for some.

I had to get my car fixed this past weekend. That process took about 5-6 hours. “Unluckily” ( 😛 ) for me, there was a mall across the street. What a bummer, guess I just had to spend that much time in the mall 😛 My eyes were drawn to ZARA’s Spring-Summer Sale. Of course. Regarding some of their clothing… I just have the following thoughts: What? What? Why? How? Why? But there are many items that I just love and so I stocked up on some nice finds. Take a look… we’ll call this business chic 🙂 It’s what I’m wearing to work. Whoot whoot! HAHA… for you young (physically and/or young at heart) folks out there 🙂

The Finds

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I was very excited when I spotted this EVERYDAY SHOPPER handbag in the sale section! It’s not leather (sad… but tis okay… I’m too clumsy for fancy leather bags right now)… Pros: It’s pretty spacious and can fit an iPad (as long as you have a cover). It’s very simple but sophisticated. I was looking for something that I could hold, but also swing on my shoulder if I got tired of holding it so this was the perfect find! Disadvantage? Besides the zipper that’s on the front (see photo above), there are no other zippers! Not even the little pouch on the inside. I don’t really mind, because at work, I don’t need to worry about having a bag that zips… but as long as you’re not in a crowded place where you have to worry about people reaching into your bag, this is good! 🙂

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ZARA flats from Udaipur … I honestly have no clue what they’re called but I like them 🙂 The polka dotted blouse was part of the Zara sale section. They nice to wear over leggings if you’re looking for a casual look around the house. At work, I tuck it in under a nice pencil-ish skirt or business-esque pants.

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I also got this comfy sweater to wear at home: Basic Knit Sweater yipee!

Extra find – my roomie just got back from San Fran and look what she got me! She knows my fascination for pandas… and I’m always losing umbrellas so this was perfect! Please do not ask me why there is a serving suggestion on my umbrella. Why do I need to add “hot watter” and why must I bring it to a boil and simmer? What am I consuming??!! 🙂

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The Look

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Items – A day in the life of Jarkie’s work fashion lololol

1. Handbag: Everyday Shopper (Black), $29.99   2. Polka dotted printed blouse (Red/Coral), $35.99    3. EXPRESS skirt    4. Zara Trafaluc flats   5. Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy(1.7 oz), $70.00   6. Juicy Couture Starter Charm Link Bracelet (gold tone), $48.00 

At a first glance, those items might look pricey… but ain’t nobody got that kinda money (at least not us young ones just outta college trying to save up for more school!)… look for outlets in your area! Since I’m a AAA (triple A) member, I was able to get a VIP coupon book at the particular outlet I went to. Helped me save a tone of some of the Juicy items 🙂

What are your favorite finds? Are there any sales going on that you’re crazy about? Please do share!

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Today, I am back to being in “Love with Food” and bringing you another coupon!

Hello! It’s been too long, dear foodies!  I’ve been meaning to review my June “Love with Food” box.  But I’ve been distracted…  I ended up taking this box with me to work and all these items were perfect for snacking in the office. Speaking of work, I will be moving into a new office! No more cubicle! But rather a shared office ! Yipee! Okay, first up, the coupons. And then my review! 🙂

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Love with Food– Get your first box free with this code!
Coupon code: FBGIFT
**That was the code I used to get my 1st box free. Let me know if it doesn’t work. With the code, all you will need to pay is $2 shipping. 

the goodies co.  – Get your first box free with this code!
Code: IAfbP2
**You enter your email, promo code, and create password. I got my invitation almost instantly… and received the first box for free! It’s normally $7/mo. No shipping fees with this one! I’ll post this review when I receive the box!

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Love with Food (June 2013)

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When they mention “Great Cause” I think they are referring to the fact that for every box purchased, a meal is donated to a hungry child.

Pretty box. What did I get?

Oooo la la! Nomnomnom.

Oooo la la! Nomnomnom.

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These two larger items were the first items that caught my attention. They also turned out to be my favorite foods from this month’s box!

Roasted Seaweed Snack, Olive Oil
Value: $1.37
I have been eating these snacks FOREVER! I love them! I usually get them at the Asian supermarket … either with grapeseed oil or kimchi/spicy flavored. This particular pack met my expectations, crispy, thin, salted just right and perfect for a light snack! Rating: 8/10

Sweet Plaintain Chips by Turbana
Value: ~$1.42
Crunchy, sweet & salty means perfect for snacking! Each chip is bite size, maybe the size or a quarter or dollar coin. Stamp of approval from me (not that that means anything :P) Rating: 8/10

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photo (1)Flavrz Organic Citrus Hibiscus Drink Mix 
Value: $2.40
I mixed this liquid drink into about 12-14 oz (I’m not quite sure how to measure that cup). You can kind of see the light, translucent coloring. It’s not as sweet as I imagined. Not too bad… however, I don’t think I would purchase these drinks. It tastes a bit weird after a bit. Rating: 5/10

smooze! All Natural Cocount + Mango Fruit Ice
Value: ~$2.30
Dairy-free and made with coconut water. Left it in the freezer for just an hour or so and then took it out to enjoy. A light creamy tight of consistency. The mango/coconut flavors were perfect together. Loved it! I could see this being a perfect snack for summer gatherings or a nice treat for kids. Rating: 6/10

pur pomegranate mint gum 
Value: ~$1.80
Sweet and yet minty. A light sour taste also (from the pomegranate, maybe?). I like the flavor… however, the gum became hard pretty fast…  Rating: 4.5/10

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GoOrganic Apple and Blood Orange Hard Candies
Nice little hard candy treats! I prefer the blood orange flavor. Rating: 5.5/10

SoyJoy Mango Coconut Bar
Value: ~$0.99
I received one of these bars in my very first Birchbox (I think November 2012? Maybe?)… eh. I am not a fan. A lot of my friends seems to enjoy these, but they are too dry and not flavorful, IMO. Rating: 3/10

SurfSweets Fruity Bears
Value: ~$1.00
Nice little gummy treats!  Just wish the sample pack contained more than just 5 little bears! Rating: 6.5/10

Do More Bars Pineapple Coconut Cereal Bar
Value: ~$1.91
Gluten free. Your typical cereal bar (almost rice krispy esque but not quite). Pretty good! Rating: 7/10

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Other little bonuses:

  • $50 wine gift card – meh
  • Beach Trip Drink Recipe Card
  • SoyJoy Coupon

Overall, a decent box! The value came to around $14.00 which actually just fits the $12.00 + $2.00 shipping cost of each month’s box. This was my very first food subscription box. I’m more of the kind of person who likes to get ingredient to make large meals … so I don’t think I’ll be staying with this subscription, but if you like to experiment with snacks, this seems like a perfect box!

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Today, I am a 20 year old something cooking in a cubicle…

That should be the title of my new album, which btw, I will be recording…. Like this blog on fb and if I get 100 likes, I’ll go buy the livingsocial deal. Hehe, see what I did there? Set ridiculously high goals that I know are not attainable. Ha! Too bad, y’alls are missing out on my lovely Taylor Swift renditions. Anyways, I’m much too lazy in the evenings to prepare my breakfast/lunch for the work day and it’s like a war battle in the mornings for me to just get clothes on and get to work… so I thought, why not bring all my ingredients to work? I know I need to be more aware of what I’m consuming… my body is starting to not like me for the 20-something years of junk food (I mean 3-4 cartons of the lunchables stackers or pizza boxes at once?) is starting to show. Gotta reverse the damage!

Breakfast

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They say breakfast is an important meal. Also, I’ve noticed if I make sure I have a hearty breakfast, I’m less inclined to snack throughout the day. And I’m a happier me. So on the menu today

  1. Boiled egg – these are easy to make in the morning. I leave a pot of water overnight on my stovetop. In the morning, throw one or two eggs into the pot and let it boil while I go fight my battle (toothpaste, where are my contacts?!, clothes?!)…
  2. Cereal – you can be fancy and get those cool Cereal To Go containers but why not just use tupperware you already have lying around in the kitchen to store the milk and either leave the cereal at work or pack the dry cereal in a ziploc bag?
  3. Something of bonus – I heated up my english muffin. Spread each side with some almond butter. I packed a banana in my lunch bag and yay! Good for breakfast or an afternoon snack. Just cut little banana slices and spread them on top!

Lunch

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I love Rotisserie chicken. It’s good to just devour the juicy meat directly from the bones… or if you want to be more civil, tear some breast pieces off. Pack that in a box with some salad and tomatoes on the side. If you have some celery sitting around, that’s good too! Or grapes! Or apples! At work, I hoard little mayo and mustard packets … and little salt and pepper packets I grab from Wendy’s or McDonald’s. I also have my honey bottle sitting at work for tea. Just combine it all!

– Sandwich Thins
– ~.5 – 1 cup of shredded chicken breast
– 2 packets of mayonnaise
– Diced apple (or whatever else you have: celery, raisins, grapes, etc)
– Salad greens (spinach, arugula, etc)
– Sliced tomatoes (2-3)
– Cheese (pepperjack? optional)
– Salt, Pepper, Honey/Sugar

Mix the chicken, apples (or whatever you chose) mayonnaise, salt, pepper and honey with a fork. Top one side of the sandwich thin or bread with your salad greens and sliced tomatoes and then spoon the chicken mixture on top. If you opted for cheese, add that slice on top. And voila! We have a winner! Enjoy!

I got these photos (see below) from my good friend in Thailand. Well, we aren’t all so lucky as my current view is a Home Sharps Container and some stacks of papers I must enter. 😛 But let me just imagine I am sitting there next to her at the temple facing the lovely beach.

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Today, I go on a Sentimental Journey …

I’m taking one emotional trip into the past! Before I take y’all there, let me say that I finally decided to be smart and bring my breakfast to work!

Guide to Starting the Day Right as a young busy professional (and really any age!)
Portion your oatmeal into zip-loc bags! Bring a small cup of milk and a bear of honey and heat up at work! Also, hard boiled eggs are easy to make and bring! String cheese! Fruits! story: I forgot that I left my eggs on the stove last night… on high heat… for about 45 minutes. Uh-oh. But they tasted just fine. If that ever happens to you, well, now you know 🙂

Sentimental Journey
emmy-rossum-sentimental-journey-album-releaseYesterday, January 29, marked the day that Emmy Rossum came out with her new album: Sentimental Journey. I cannot wait for her CD to arrive in the mail 🙂 You might know Emmy from Phantom of the Opera, from her album Inside Out, or from the Showtime series Shameless. You probably saw her in Poseidon. And a few of you (this could possibly include me, 😛 can I not answer?) probably know her as Bulma from Dragonball Evolution. Anyways, all that aside, she was formally trained as an opera singer and I love her! Honestly, there is love there that resides in my heart for her. I was a bit disappointed with her last album, though I did enjoy “Slow Me Down”, “High”, “Lullaby” and her cover of “Rainy days and Mondays” (The Carpenters). In this album, she brings her lovely voice to cover a collection of 20 century classics (a span of 40 years, from 1920s -1960s). She also has turned this album into a “musical calendar,” taking us both literally and emotionally through the months of each year. Ooooh, one more concept, she’s created a couple of “vignettes” (fancy right? we’re not talking about plain music videos here :P) for the songs… She is gorgeous in all of them! I’m currently in love with her rendering of “These Foolish Things”… which has been sung before by numerous lovely folks, from Billie Holiday to Frank Sinatra to Rod Stewart to Michael Bublé. Go YouTube the full album version (and support her and buy her CD on iTunes or she has a Fan Edition which comes with a CD, a calendar, and instant download of one of the songs)!!! Listen to the vignette below! It is currently playing through my headphones and has transported me from the walls of this nude-colored textile cubicle to a dimly lit lounge somewhere far away in a distant time…

These Foolish Things (Remind Me of You)
LFM WONGA quick Wikipedia (click to see what I see!) search reveals that it is a tune with words by Eric Maschwitz and music by Jack Strachey. What caught my eye on that page is that Maschwitz, an English man, apparently penned these lyrics to express the longing he felt for the Chinese-American actress, Anna May Wong, who he was romantically linked with, after his returned to England. Some of you may be familiar with her. If you’re not, she was the first Chinese-American movie star. If you have some free time, read up about her life. Seeing her name reminded me of a documentary regarding many Chinese-American movie stars back in the days. I can’t remember where I saw this documentary but I do remember that while many of the actresses were able to achieve some sort of fame/recognition, they almost all dealt with disappointments. For instance, instead of being offered the lead role for the film “The Good Earth”, Anna May Won was offered the role of a song girl that seduces the family’s son and assists in destroying the family. She turned down that role as all the other actors set to be in that film were of European descent portraying Chinese characters. Why give her the “unsympathetic role” (in her own words)? Many roles available for Chinese-American actresses at the time in Hollywood (and even if you look at what we have now…) emphasized Chinese stereotypes. In fact, that is where the term Dragon Lady– a sterotype of East Asian women being deceitful and mysterious– comes from. Well, Anna May Wong has left quite a legacy, I think China has forgotten her but people will still remember her, I hope… and I shall think a bit about it all. Phew. I just realized this post is getting to be more than a mere “Today, I…” post… so I’ll just end on this part. Maybe this thought will come back to me.

Time to enjoy the tunes: