Wednesday, December 17


Hello everyone!! I am saying HI with my perfect eyesight, typing from a good one metre away from my screen! Having regained my 6/6 eyesight is akin to having life giving me a second chance to take care of my eyes - how often do we get second chances in life? 

The above is me on most years of my childhood and recent days when I'm a 黄脸婆 at home minus the makeup. I don't mind wearing spectacles because the big frames help to hide my dark eye circles whenever I decide to skip the face powder routine. What I reallyyyyy dislike though is
1) how the glasses leave red imprints on my nose bridge after wearing it for long hours,
2) no matter how I tighten the frame, it still slips off my nose, and
3) how annoying it is to have my eyelashes brush against the lens all. the. time. My fake lashes might be too long but my natural lashes always dirty the lens with... the eye cream? I don't know what dirt is that but my lens get blur and I have to wipe it every hour.

When I was flying last time, I had to take out my contact lenses during the short 3 hours crew rest and it was such a hassle! I could've slept with contacts on but that would make my eyes red and dry when I wake up so I diligently removed them before rest and sacrificed some 15 minutes of precious rest time in total. I was also a blind cat walking to and fro the crew bunk from the toilet. :/

Friends/Ex-colleagues who went through LASIK (I'm using this term loosely) always share stories about how the procedure is the best decision they've made up till this point in life and truthfully, I've always thought it's a little exaggerating. I cringe whenever they describe the surgery - "blade slicing open your cornea", "cornea was flipped open and lasering was done to correct refractive error. Sounds absolutely horrifying with these images going through my mind and some of them are spotted with red eyes (broken blood vessels) for a week!

Yet the thought of going for LASIK never left my mind because I don't want to be a 四眼妹 forever! If I can make my life/travelling easier, why not?

A month before I went for the refractive eye surgery, I actually gone through a 2-hour long pre-refractive surgery evaluation at one of the LASIK clinics located at Paragon Shopping Centre to ensure my suitability for refractive surgery treatment. This evaluation also provided me information on the health of my eyes in general. I sat through 6 different stations which require me to focus my eyes on the screen in front of me while the professionals do their checks. I was then asked to watch a couple of videos about the different types of refractive eye surgeries available and a consultation with the attending doctor - easy peasy! 

At the end of the 2 hours, it was revealed to me that I have thick cornea (yay!) and I am suitable for all forms of refractive eye surgeries for my shortsightedness and astigmatism (double yay!) so I made the choice of going for ReLEx SMILE, which is a new bladeless, flapless, and micro incision refractive eye procedure that corrects visual problems including short-sightedness & astigmatism. 

I checked it out and realised they were one of the two centres in Singapore that offers ReLEx SMILE.

ReLEx SMILE (Refractive Lenticule Extraction, Small Incision Lenticule Extraction) was the least terrifying method where only a tiny 2-4mm incision is made in the cornea! It is a single-step, all-in-one laser procedure that takes about 10 minutes to perform on one eye but my surgery finished in 15 minutes for both eyes! Literally in the blink of an eye it was over ;)

Taken at the clinic before my surgery - last picture in glasses and bye-bye myopia!

All I did was just lie there with my eyes open, focused on the green light and I was done! I did not feel anything and contrary to beliefs, I couldn't exactly see what the doctor was doing - it was all in the head because I watched the video previously.
I could leave immediately after the procedure and because H had an important meeting that afternoon, he couldn't pick me up so I was feeling a little anxious before the procedure about the trip home without my eyesight. In the end, I realised my worries were unfounded because the nurse actually personally walked me to the taxi stand and I COULD ALREADY SEE though all I wanted was just close my eyes due to the discomfort felt.

Got home, popped a sleeping pill prescribed by the clinic, slept for 4 hours and the discomfort was GONE and I have regained at least 80% of my vision - clear just not perfect yet.

I went back for my post-surgery review the next day and it's as if life is back to normal again though this time my dependency on spectacles and contact lenses were greatly reduced! My left eye felt perfectly normal but right eye was experiencing minor discomfort like having an eyelash in the eye. No major disruptions to my life though! I could go about my daily life just without makeup but hey, my complexion improved tons during the 2-weeks post-op!

Also, after ReLEx SMILE, I developed slight night vision issues such as haloes and starbursts which look like the background of the picture above. It's no biggie and doesn't pose a problem when driving at night. Thankfully, I was told by the doctor that this will go away in 3-6 months when I regain full visual potential, and it is part of the healing process.

Would I recommend it?
Yes, a hundred times yes. There is no wrong in improving your quality of life.

I say, give yourself this second chance.

Thursday, December 11

Unforgettable Moments with PANDORA

Woohoo! December is here! While I don't celebrate Christmas, I still enjoy busking in the warmth and festive joy, the feasts and the colours, as well as laughters shared over a good meal with friends. It's a wonderful last month of each year indeed :) December 2014 is gonna be incredible for H and I as we will be spending half the month wrapped up in knits and jackets, playing with snow and hopping around the Christmas markets that Europe has to offer. It is also H's birthday month. On top of a surprise dinner I sprang on him with our friends at one of our favourite restaurants, I also went over to PANDORA to choose a couple of charms that signify new beginnings for the both of us. I'm a huge fan of PANDORA's rings but I thought H would prefer a leather woven bracelet as he is always seen with one on his wrist.

The Christmas 2014 collection (available in stores since 30th Oct) is pretty amazing with a huge variety of designs to suit your needs. I decided to go with the Winter Cosmic collection because they are dark, mysterious and in navy blue (my favourite colour at the moment)!

I am not one who likes overly bling stuff so this fully encrusted jewel ring was subtle with a teeny sparkle of elegance perfect for nights out when I don on a plain LBD and a little twinkle wouldn't hurt.

2014 is a huge year for both H and I so I decided to start off with 3 charms to commemorate this year (L-R): Bride & Groom Charm, Family Home Silver Charm, Iridescent Blue Fizzle Glass Charm.

We got married in the third quarter of this year and spent a long time (maybe not really that long since we are last-minute procrastinators. 3 months.) planning for it so of course I had to get a Bride & Groom Charm. Our wedding day was an once-in-a-lifetime event and it is definitely gonna be one of the most unforgettable moments for us in the next 50, 60 and even 80 years together. Wearing me on his wrist will always remind him of the promises he made and of the sweetness we tasted on the day we wed. Of course, when H wears his bracelet, this will also send **alert** to all the females around him that he is committed. ;p

Another milestone is us getting our home this year so I thought that a home charm with "Home Sweet Home" engraved at the bottom is very appropriate. Looking at the charm makes us excited about living together with a beautiful interior that we are in the midst of designing! This is our first home and there will be no expense spared to make it as ideal as possible. Hopefully the completed project will exude coziness just like the charm! 

The bracelet is ultimately, still a gift for H so I decided to "man it up" with a navy blue glass charm from the Christmas collection. Coincidentally, it was from the same Winter Cosmic collection as my ring so yay we will always have something matching to wear! ;)

If you are looking for special gift ideas for your the ladies in your life, friends, family (even the guys!), let me tempt you with some of my favourites!

I love rings and the band of silver stars was my absolute favourite! If only they still have it in my size :(

Or maybe I just love stars... *starry-eyed*

If you love colours or red, don't fret, you're not left out! PANDORA has a wide offering from their latest range that caters to women and men alike. There is always something to suit the receiver's personality and individual style. 

I am happy with my choices for the both of us and the beam on H's face says it all when he saw the bracelet, charms, and meaning behind each one I've chosen ;)

PANDORA held an exclusive Christmas party for their VIPs on 20th November at the newly revamped ION Orchard which I was unable to attend because I just did LASIK :( But I saw some of the event photos and it looked like a lot of fun!

There was digital caricature of guests with their PANDORA bracelets, engraving of guests’ names on Murano glass charms which was then given to them as a personalised gift and a personalised photobooth!

You could be invited to the next PANDORA VIP event! To qualify as a member, accumulate $3000 purchase within 6 months. Thereafter, you will get to enjoy 15% discount storewide on regular priced items, a one-time 20% discount during birthday month, exclusive offers and invitation to exclusive events like the above!

Remember to retain your original receipts and present them at your preferred PANDORA store to sign up as a VIP member! 

Enjoy your Christmas shopping, ladies and gentlemen! :D

Tuesday, December 9

Due for a change!

It's not a secret I chopped off my bunch of flat and unruly hair a week after my wedding because I had enough. The last time I had strands this long was probably 8-9 years ago when I was young and crazy about curls. I also did the same thing then when I got bored of my dry, tangled hair which never got to be caressed by a brush for the longest time - I snipped them all off and rebonded my hair hahaha. No surprise how almost a decade later, I still deal with hair matters in the same way.

When I sat down at ProTrim JEM and saw myself in the mirror, I actually thought my hair doesn't look too bad and contemplated for a second to keep the length. But anyway, Elva cut off that bunch in a matter of seconds...and my seat wasn't even warm yet.

We got down to serious business after that! I had my ends curled using the Korean way of perming - C-curls if I'm not wrong. Also did some clipping on my hair roots for volume which usually lasts for a month but boy, does it work!

After all that perm, of course I need some serious nutrients for my tresses and Elva arranged the 3-step Keratase treatment for me.

Step 1: Keratase strengthening shampoo
Step 2: Keratase Fusio-Dose Treatment that consists of all of the above 4 boosters, namely to provide strengthening to coloured, dry, weakened and thinning hair.
Step 3: Strengthening hair mask applied on top of treatment + boosters

I left ProTrim JEM with pretty amazing hair but I looked terrible after sitting in there for hours so I'll let the after-pictures taken a couple of days later to do the speaking!

I might be a little obsessed with the hair-tossing look hence the excessive takes but I really loveeeee my bob!

Super good hair day at DFW SG where I curled the ends in with my hair straightener. I love big and poofy hair if you cannot tell hahaha.

I only went back to the salon recently to get a new colour for my mane and I've gone back to (almost) black with traces of violet/ruby under sunlight.

Feel free to spam Elva at ProTrim JEM (contact no: 6734 7883) or Tino at Somerset 313 (contact no: 6238 7928) with calls if you would like to enquire about all the hair details! I'm pretty sure you won't leave the salon disappointed! :)

True to its name, the Colour Me Neoprene Dress from Fashmob made me a walking rainbow for a day since I've been seen in monochrome way too often lately. I love the quality neoprene material that stretches and doesn't make me feel uncomfortable after a heavy meal!

I personally feel that wearing pants somehow makes one look more dressed up no matter the top you're matching it with. The Albany Pants in Blue comes with a casual loose fit that goes great with a pair of statement shoes!

Enjoy your shopping on Fashmob while I continue my packing for Europe! xx

Wednesday, December 3

Missing a lot of things in HCMC

So. A year ago H and I were in Ho Chi Minh City. And I am only documenting it now because I cannot forget about the meal we had on our first night at Cuc Gach Quan. Rumour has it that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie also visited that restaurant some years ago when they flew to HCMC. I don't know what has gotten into me because a week ago, I was having SERIOUS craving for this spicy seafood noodles H and I had in Myeong Dong, Seoul 3-4 years ago just before we leave for the airport. Years passed and I never thought much of it then BOOM, last week, the spicy noodles came back to me and I could still remember the exact taste of the soup and the texture of the thick noodles. I cannot even remember the name of the noodle shop nor its exact location and it is unlikely we'll find it again if we go to Seoul but anyway, it was located on the second level of one of those short buildings in Myeong Dong.

And this week, I wish I could teleport myself back to Cuc Gach Quan.

I looked through my pictures taken in HCMC and I understand why didn't I blog about it - there wasn't much pictures taken and I had a lot of blurry photos hahaha.

Anyway, we stayed at Hotel Nikko Saigon which is slightly off the city centre. I highly recommend it because they have a shopping mall connected to the hotel, the hotel staff are extremely helpful and the breakfast is sooooo goooood! I love the Japanese spread! 

We took a taxi to Cuc Gach Quan and that was our first and only good meal the entire trip. They have an extensive menu and almost anything they offer on the menu can be cooked according to your wishes. We had the claypot pork and prawn, (green?) brinjal with peanuts, fried tofu and a chicken dish. I think fish sauce made everything taste good because this meal exceeded our expectations! We paid approximately S$30 which is considered a little pricey for HCMC standard but rather reasonable to us. 

Walked out to the main street after dinner and we were greeted with a throng of people. It was crazy having to squeeze with everyone and trying to get a taxi was worse. In fact, getting a taxi at any time of the day is not easy. at all.

H and I were superbly unimpressed by the pho we ate on this trip. I had chicken pho and I hate all these black/red looking chicken bits. I only like my chicken meat white please, with no joints, bones and fats *_*

Luckily there's spring rolls to save the day.

After an unsatisfying lunch, we decided to head over to La Creperie for crepes! I wasn't too hungry but I was hungry so I couldn't pass up on the savoury crepe which tasted better than the caramelised banana which was way too sweet.

Dinner was French food at Le Jardin. I'm not very sure if this is authentic 'cause I don't think French eat thick creamy mustard mayo with their meat but this is a good place to check out for affordable French food in HCMC which H and I thoroughly enjoyed.

And then we had another round of unsatisfying pho...and yummy fried spring rolls. I'm pretty sure we were hitting up the wrong pho joints.

Oh yes, I also ate some street food and I had a very bad stomach the next day! It wasn't food poisoning, I did not vomit neither did I have to take a crap - it was just really, really uncomfortable. I couldn't stand completely straight and I had no appetite. It lasted the entire day and I had to take a plane home that day :( So street food in Vietnam - no more next time. Eat with caution guys!

Ending our HCMC adventures with a picture of H looking his fittest. I'm gonna print this picture and leave it by his bedside so he gets the hint and starts visiting the gym again. 

Missing that body,
tippytapp xx