Monday, November 17, 2014

Hello World!

Hello world! 
I'm still alive!!!!  

 I can't believe it's been a year now since I started a project here in Bangkok. 
I'm having such a blast here.   I'm loving every minute of it.  

A quick recap of what happened to me since I last blogged 6 months ago: 

  • I gained a few pounds because I can't control my diet here!  Pad thai, som tum, tom yum... yumm yumm yummm!!   I've lost a few of it but only to gain it back again!  
  •  I'm doing the most difficult implementation I've ever done in my 15 years of doing what I'm doing!  Work took up so much of my time and blogging has taken a backseat.  
  • I have been shopping non-stop.  Bangkok fashion is very cute and extremely cheap, I can't help it! 
  • I've gone 5 months of outfits without repeating.  Not a single one! That's what happens if you shop every single weekend, I guess.
  • We've traveled so much around South East Asia and we will be doing our city #100 in the next few weeks here!  
  • I'm learning Muay Thai and my trainer says I have good punches and I'm a natural boxer.  Who knew!!

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Catherine Malandrino for Kohls (Part1): Home

I told my friends that I won't fly home until the last trace of snow is gone.   
After 6 months of being away, I delivered to such promise and now I'm home for a few days. 

I didn't realize how much I missed home until I actually got home.   
I thought the house would feel so big after living in a tiny hotel studio suite for too long.
But no, I was completely and immediately feeling homey as soon as I got home. 

Except jetlag is a bitch and I've been up until the wee hours and too sleepy to see the sun during the daylight hours.  

Oh well...  Still, there's no place like home! 

malandrino paris sweater - narciso kohls pants - gucci peep toe5
malandrino paris sweater - narciso kohls pants - gucci peep toe3

                                                                     TOP: Catherine Malandrino for Kohls Design Nation Eiffel sweater!
                                                                     PANTS Narciso Rodriguez for Kohls Design Nation tuxedo pants
                                                                     SHOES Gucci 'Paloma' peep toes

Sunday, April 13, 2014

I Heart Bangkok!

I'm so at home now here in Bangkok. 
Yes, that's despite the language barrier and despite the spicy food.  

What's not to love about this place?! 
There's plenty of things to do to satisfy the traveler in me, plenty of shops to enable my insatiable shopaholic self, and plenty of resto options for my inner foodie! 

Now that my work is no longer crazy busy and finally have the weekend to myself, 
weekends are now down to science which consist of: 
A little sightseeing and a lot of shopping on Saturdays;
a nice brunch, an afternoon tea, a long  massage, and salon time on Sundays.  

I ❤️ Bangkok!
market top - jlo shorts - weitzman shoes - prada shades - lv bag1 market top - jlo shorts - weitzman shoes - prada shades - lv bag4 market top - jlo shorts - weitzman shoes - prada shades - lv bag3 market top - jlo shorts - weitzman shoes - prada shades - lv bag5 market top - jlo shorts - weitzman shoes - prada shades - lv bag2 
                                                                     TOP: Bangkok market 
                                                                     SHORTS JLo for Kohls
                                                                     ACCESSORIES LV bag;  Prada sunglasses.
                                                                     SHOES Stuart Weitzman

Sunday, April 6, 2014


So what would one wear to meet new friends? 
The answer came in this blingdingly bright pink outfit. 
(So bright I had to wear sunglasses!

...Because nothing says "Let's be friends!" like a overwhelmingly cutesy pink ensemble.

michael kors top - kohls cullottes - melissa flats - lv bag - prada sunnies (2) michael kors top - kohls cullottes - melissa flats - lv bag - prada sunnies (1)

                                                                     TOP: Michael Kors 
                                                                     SHORTS JLo for Kohls
                                                                     ACCESSORIES LV bag;  Prada sunglasses.
                                                                     SHOES Melissa jelly bow flats

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Bangkok Office Outfits

The longer I am here in Bangkok, the shorter my skirts are getting to be.

Back in the US, I would never dare to wear a skirt three inches above the knee
(or not without an opaque stockings, at least).

But here in BKK, it seems to be OK .   In fact, it seems to be encouraged.   

It kinda makes sense though. 
With the weather so hot, who wants to be sitting in
 lined dresses all day long? 

And so as the saying goes, if you can't beat them, join them! 

 power pink
                                                                     DRESS: Bought from Kuala Lumpur. 
                                                                     ACCESSORIES ASOS belt; Banana Republic necklace; Givenchy earrings
  international outfit
                                                                   DRESS: Bought from Kuala Lumpur. 
                                                                   BLAZER:  H&M  
                                                                   SHOES Prada black bow pumps
DRESS: From Bangkok market (Platinum Fashion Mall).
                                                                                         BLAZER:  H&M  
                                                                                         SHOES Prada black bow pumps
                                                                                         ACCESSORIES Mimi di N elephant belt

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Travelogue: Travel Tips to Siem Reap, Cambodia (Angkor Wat Temple Complex)

Our trip to Siem Reap is one that I will remember for a long, long time.
I was very impressed with the place, the people and most specially the impressive ruins! 

And surprisingly very affordable for such a touristy place.  
An entire weekend there only cost us $500, inclusive of hotel, dining and food.  

Here are some tips to maximize a short 2-day weekend visit:
  • Apply for an e-visa prior to your travel or else, waste 2 hours at the airport to get one. 
  •  Book a private tour with Sam Pho.  Our driver is such a nice gentleman and our tour guide was so energetic and enthusiastic.  You can tell they really love their job and so proud to showcase their country!   One day of 14-hour tour in a private car with our own driver only cost us $100!
  •  Do wake up at 4:30 to camp early at Angkor Wat to see the sunrise.  It's quite a spectacular site! 
  • We were able to visit 4 ruins in a day, thanks to our very well planned tour from Sam Pho.  We were able to cover Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, Banyan Temple, Ta Phrom and 3 other little temples in between! 
  • While Angkor Wat is the most impressive size-wise, and Ta Phrom is the most famous thanks to Hollywood's Tomb Raider, Angkor Thom is my favorite.   The identical 4-sided head carving in each and every single column of the structure is just impressive.   Knowing this is at least 1000 years old makes it even more impressive!
  • We managed to take photos as if there's hardly any crowd there!   Another reason to book with Sam Pho tours, they know the "secret" places to take the best shots!  A bonus for my hubby who is a photo junkie. 
  • Watch an Apsara dinner dance show.  It's a great way to end your visit! 

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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Travel Perspective

Our recent travel visiting ruins of the once great Khmer kingdom gave me not only memorable photos but more importantly, a valuable perspective.

...It made me realize that years from now, I will not remember the long hours I have put in in this project, but the time I took off from work to see places will be a lifetime memory that I will always cherish -- forever tucked away in some corner in my brain, hashtagged as "my happy place". 

...It's making me rethink that if I could live in a tiny 600 sq. feet hotel room for 5 straight months, then why do I feel like I need so much more back home?  Can I simplify my life so that I could retire early and spend the rest of my time traveling the world?  That will surely add a lot more "happy place" hashtags in my brain!

From now on, my mantra would be:
NOT Work Too Hard. Eat Well. Save Up. Retire Young. Travel Often!

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                                                                     TOP: Mango 
                                                                     PANTS MICHAEL Michael Kors
                                                                     ACCESSORIES Prada nylon bag.
                                                                     SHOES Vivienne Westwood Anglomania for Melissa jelly shoes
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                                                                     TOP: Neiman Marcus
                                                                     PANTS Lululemon yoga pants
                                                                     ACCESSORIES Fendi sunglasses; Prada nylon bag.
                                                                     SHOES Vivienne Westwood Anglomania for Melissa jelly shoes

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Narciso Rodriguez for Kohls (Part 19): Making Friends

dolce and gabbana skirt - narciso kohls top - gucci shoes3 

Friends, this is how you make new friends, shopaholic-style. 

At dinner, trying to engage in some casual conversation with my newfound friend. 
New Friend:  So, do you like football or soccer?
Me: Hmm tough...   I really like shopping. 

Speaking of shopping, I should have bought this entire Narciso Rodriguez collection at Kohls! 
 Because it looks like this series has no end in sight!
 dolce and gabbana skirt - narciso kohls top - gucci shoes2 
                                                                     TOP: Narciso Rodriguez for Kohls pink peplum top.   Other pairings here
                                                                     SKIRT Dolce & Gabbana
                                                                     SHOES Gucci gray suede shoes

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Travelogue: Travel Tips to Ayutthaya, Thailand

Just a quick hour drive up north of Bangkok is the beautiful city of Ayutthaya --
an ancient kingdom built by Rama I U-Thong, the first ruler of Thailand.  

The entire city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and there's at least 58 beautiful attractions to tour! 

There is so much history, ancient relics and beautiful temples to soak in in this beautiful city and it's unfortunate that we only had a day to tour around.  


If you find yourself in this lovely city, here's a few tips to enjoy your visit: 

1.  Hire a private van from Bangkok.  It's a bit pricey but it's the fastest and safest.   
     We hired a chauffeured van from this company and was very pleased with their service. 

2.  Visit Wat Phanan Choeng Worawihan to see an impressivly towering 60-feet golden Buddha   
     statue!   Linger long enough to see a robe ceremony -- where faithful Buddhists honor their
     Buddha by offering the statue a vibrant orange new robe.

3.  Arrive early to see Wat Yai Chai Mhang Khon (Monastery of Auspicious Victory) before the 
     morning sun casts directly to the temple.   And if your timing is lucky enough, take this 
     shot (scroll below to see the 2nd photo that we took of a teenage tourist with the lovely brick 
     temple at the backdrop). 

4. Visit Ayutthaya Historical Park to see the ruins of this historic city, the once capital of the country 
    and home of the 1st King from the 13th century.  Find out how this once great   
    kingdom fell to its enemy in a gruesome and gory battle.   I hope not to get nightmares from it.  

5. Always rent an audio wherever it's offered.  For a  mere $3 (฿100), you get a  lesson in history 
    with a very interesting narration.  It's how I found out the interesting story in #5 above.   
    If nothing else, it will surely help bring the relics come back to life in your imagination.  
    Without it, everything will just look like another brick from another century.

6.  Visit Wat Maha That (Monastery of the Great Relic) and look for the sandstone Buddha 
     surrounded by tree roots.   Sure you'll get a wee bit disappointed realizing it's a tad small than 
     what the travel magazines promised and lured you into.   Regardless, it's not something you see 
     everyday and can't buy at the malls! 

7.  Stop for lunch at Coffee Old City.   There's a reason why it's voted #1 on Tripadvisor.   Order 
     their Tom Yum fried rice, Pad Thai to find out for yourself. 

8.  Visit Wat Chaiwatthanaram and find out what gift this once king gave his mom.   Puts our  
     mother's day card and charm bracelet gifts to shame. 

9.  Hire a boat to cruise around Chao Phraya or a bike to tour around the city.  But no matter 
     what you do, I beg not to hire an elephant ride!   Should you consider it for a moment, read this 
     blog and you'll surely change your mind. 

10.   After learning so much history of this great city, (assuming you followed #9 above), you'll 
        slowly start to harbor a little resentment to the people who ruined this city.   Chill!!  It happened
        more than 400 years ago.   Suggest to go back to the place in #7 to have a Thai Iced Tea.

10.  I was told to visit 9 temples in a day for good luck.   I had a all the good intentions but   
       unfortunately, I reached some form of temple fatigue towards the late afternoon after hours 
       in grueling heat.  (It's high 85F that day. I live in Minnesota, 80's is a grueling heatwave for 

So after 7 hours, 5 temples, countless relics and a lesson in Thai history -- all for a mere $30 
(฿900), we called it a day.

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It's a shameless plug, I know... but thought you might enjoy my other travelogue posts here too!   

Sunday, January 26, 2014


I've been here in Thailand for about 4 months now but this is only my 3rd sightseeing trip. 
I am so glad the hubz was so adamant for us to do some touristy stuff this weekend or else, 
I would have just spent my entire Saturday working.  Again.  As with any other  Saturdays.  

Five years from now, I won't remember the documents I wrote, the challenging 
questions I answered nor the long hours I did on this project.  

But I'll do remember the fun excursions --  soaking in history, appreciating the beauty of ancient relics, and tales of wisdom  of kings of old! 

Seize the day!  It's exactly what I did yesterday.  

I promise to do a proper blog post of this lovely city next time. 
But for now, here's a little preview...

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                                                                     TOP: H&M striped black & white dress worn as a top 
                                                                     PANTS Lululemon yoga pants 
                                                                     ACCESSORIES Prada baroque sunglasses;  Prada nylon bag.
                                                                     SHOES Vivienne Westwood Anglomania for Melissa jelly shoes


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