Sunday, 13 September 2015

Travel Post: US 2015 Trip Part 2: New York City

Hi there! Thanks for dropping by and waiting for this post. I can't believe it's mid-September! My school term begins October, but I wanted to start my preparation early and so spent the whole weekend clearing my desk (unfortunately, there's only this much space I can create with the hoarding tendencies and everything). I'm also clearing out my floor, because I wanted space to exercise when I start the Kayla Itsines BBG workout. If you haven't heard of it, you should take a look, seriously. And what better time to begin better habits than the beginning of school term? 

Anyway, back to my travel post. Here's NYC, through my eyes. I've included some cool paintings from the Met and MOMA, so there're quite a lot of photos! Enjoy! 

First view of Manhattan from the cab. 
Fruits. I forgot where I took this, but it's near Houston Street. I love taken photos of fruits. They're always so vibrant and colourful.  
NYC Subway. It's hot and dirty. And when the train comes into the station, it's very loud and... slightly scary. Another important thing to note, sometimes the trains don't stop at certain stations. And weekends, they run on a completely different schedule! 
Van Gogh's Starry Starry Night at Museum of Modern Art. It's always a pleasant surprise to see a famous painting up close and personal.

Love this painting. It's the colors. I can't describe it, but this is very nice. 


Times Square. And yes, construction, construction everywhere! 

Kinokuniya. It's not like the ones we have in Singapore. So much smaller, and with a Japanese focus. I went to a couple different Barnes and Noble too. Bookstores are so small in NYC. 
View of Lower Manhattan from Empire State Building! You can see the Statue of Liberty from here. It's very small though. It's very windy up there. 
Oh, ShakeShack. I'm so spoiled for burgers now. We ate there every other day, and I tried three different types of burgers. I'm missing it as I type this. 
ShakeShack. Can you see the queue? I'm not a big fan of eating in the park (birds overhead makes me paranoid), but oh, the burgers, oh, the milkshakes, oh, the cheese fries..  
Fooling around in Michaels. Got some craft stuff, but mostly papers! 
Museum of Natural History. It is very different if you go in based on the movie: Night at the Musuem. Which I did. I watched the show with my sister in Washington. 
Museum Entrances. I adore the architecture of museums. It's like they build a work of art to house art. Cool.  
Window in The Met. It is amazing! 
I love paintings with a little story behind. It gives it more life.
This is the painting I wanted to cross-stitch but now the kit is not available anymore! I'd have to buy the pattern and assemble all the threads and everything if I were to stitch it. What a pity. But it is a lovely painting. I love the cross-stitch paintings. 
View as the ferry is leaving Manhattan for Liberty Island. 
Statue of Liberty. 
Visited the 9/11 Memorial Museum. Took this photo as I was crossing the road. 
Ceiling of a Subway station near the 9/11 Memorial Museum. 
Central Park. It's HUGE, and it feels incredibly wild, with plenty of little hills and paths, and many 'picnic fields'. 
One thing good about NYC is that the shopping is great! My sister and I did a lot of shopping, plus we went to Dickblick Art Store, Purl Soho and such, so it feels great! We ate a lot, and thankfully, we walked a lot too! My luggage almost couldn't make it through the weight limitation, and it was a chore moving them out of the house to get a cab. The luggage was almost my weight! 

Anyway, my sister and I parted ways in NYC. I headed for home, and she went off to Canada for her exchange. 

It's certainly a fun trip, but gosh, I think I'm going with my boyfriend next time. 

Thanks for reading! 


Sunday, 6 September 2015

Travel Post: US 2015 Trip Part 1: Washington DC

Hi, thanks for dropping by, and thanks for dropping by when I'm away! I've been dealing with very bad jet lag, waking up at 5am in the mornings and sleeping most of the day away. Hopefully I'll be able to break the cycle tomorrow. I really don't enjoy waking up before the sky is lit, nor sleeping fitfully despite the long hours. 

But enough talk about that! Let me show you some photos I've got of Washington DC. I've got nearly 2000 photos over the last 2 weeks, so this is really a small slice of what I saw. Washington DC was hot and much too sunny. I got sunburnt on the fourth day while walking around the Tidal Basin. It was really just a lot of walking in DC, and everything feels so far apart. It took 45 mins to an hour walking from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial. With the sun bearing down on you.

Here're some photos! Hope you enjoy the slice of my vacation! :) I'll put up Part 2 of NYC next week! 

(All photos are taken by me, and unfiltered.)

US Capitol 
Exhibition at the Air and Space Museum

Our first pretzel in the US. It's too large and feels sticky in the mouth. I rather prefer Auntie Ann's! 

The Castle and the garden outside. It's very beautiful. 

Went to this museum. It's a very good museum to visit. I'd highly recommend this to everyone. 

The White House, with 2 fences, and plenty of security and police outside (not in the photo). Also not in the photo are the tourists who were busy snapping away with their cameras.

American presidents. Photo taken in the White House Visitor's Centre. 

The other side of the White House. 

Washington Monument. I must have taken hundreds of photo in 360 degrees. 

Thomas Jefferson Memorial from across the Tidal Basin.

Washington Monument and the National WWII Memorial. 

Lincoln Memorial and the Reflecting Pool. It's one long long long stretch of road. 

Lincoln Memorial.


View from the Lincoln Memorial. It's very picturesque. 

I saw plenty of black-eyed Susans in Washington.

This squirrel followed us for a while. I'm guessing he has been fed by the passers-by on this road and thought we had food.

A guy working on fossils in a lab in the Natural History Museum.

Hope Diamond. It's much more beautiful in person. The camera refused to capture the dark blue sapphire properly. 

We visited quite a lot of museums over the four days. Stayed home on the fifth day because I was down with flu and frankly, my sister and I needed the rest. The weather was particularly hot, and the sun was blazing. I live in Singapore, so I know all about hot weathers. There isn't a lot of tall buildings around the mall in particular so there wasn't much shade at all.

We missed out on the National Gallery, which I felt a little sad about. I wanted to see the paintings and gain some inspiration for crafting. 

Museums I enjoyed
Natural History

Anyway, hope you enjoyed the photos. I'm ready to head back to bed... getting a little groggy. 

Have a good Sunday, 


Sunday, 30 August 2015

Midori Traveler's Notebook Review

Hi! I've scheduled another review post for the the two weeks I am going to the US! Without further ado, let's move on to the post! Warning, I took plenty of photos! :)


For those of you who hadn't heard of the Midori Traveler's Notebook (MTN), it is basically a piece of leather wrapped around a few notebooks and secured with a rubber band. It is that simple. It is also very versatile. You can switch out the notebooks anytime you want, or just switching the placements of it. You can add in things to create your own unique combination with accessories like pouches, folders, or even DIY your own. The notebooks also comes in many different types: monthly, weekly, blank, dotted or lines. 

Without the notebooks inside, the cover is just a piece of leather. I bought the blue MTN in Shanghai, and some accessories too. I forgot how much it was. 

The top. The round thing hides the knot of the rubber band. 

The bottom. I find the black string too long so I wound it around the blue band, instead of cutting it off. I'm not sure how useful the black string is.. but just in case...

The inside. The leather itself is 2mm thick. It comes with only the blue rubber band, but I added in the black rubber band to match the double strap of my fauxdoris. The traditional midori puts its knot closure in the back. You can feel the knot when you are writing in the last notebook but otherwise, it stays out of the way. The inside feels a little like suede. 

The back of the cover. I love how the Traveler's notebook is etched properly and deeply enough. I often see substandard stamping in leather goods, and it doesn't look nice at all! 

What I had in my MTN: 

-3 blank notebooks 
-1 pouch
-2 DIY Dashboards
-2 charms 

How it looks when it's all full and decorated. I use this notebook as my creativity outlet and scribbles. 

A close up of the charms. I bought them from PaperGeekMY

A look from the top. You can see how I secure the 3 notebooks in the midori. It is also rather full now. I can add an additional notebook, but it might bulge out and the rubber band will injure the notebook when it closes. 

A side view. 

Pros of the MTN: 
  • Good for planning and jotting down notes on the quick
  • The size (regular) is similar to a clutch purse, which is a very nice shape in a bag. 
  • Being able to switch notebooks around is a big plus 
  • I'm a big fan of leather products! Love the smell of it!

Cons of the MTN: 
  • Can only fit up to 3 inserts comfortably.  
  • The knot at the back isn't well-designed. 
I love my Midori even though I've bought 4 other Fauxdoris that don't have the cons of the MTN, for the sole reason that the Midori is my first foray into the world of Traveller's Notebook. I probably would not purchase any more Midori; yay for Fauxdori!! 

Online stores where you can purchase a MTN: 

If you know anywhere else that sells Midori Traveller's Notebook, please comment below! :)


I hope this helps if you're on the fence about whether to invest in an MTN. It may not be cheap, but having a notebook system that works for you is important! I've switched between many different types, from notebooks to ring planners to electronic planners and none has worked out as well as my Midori systems. I used one for my crafting, one for daily planning, one for writing, and one for school. I'm currently using the blue one as my creativity outlet and doodles. 

Don't worry, I hadn't neglected my Hobonichi at all. ;) 

Thanks for reading! Have a great Sunday!