My failed Nail Polish Challenge

I like painting my nails these days. It’s relaxing and fun. I tried challenging myself to see for how long can I keep my manicure. The answer? not too long.

I suspect it may have something to do with using cheap polishes, or not being a professional, or even with the fact that I use my fingers and nails a little too much.

In any case, this entry will have quite a few nail pictures, with little explanations.

FIRST ATTEMPT – remember I’m not a nail professional

day 1: 

day 2: nail polish called Revers MatriXL, shade unknown

day 3: oh, my cat! lol

day 4: still pretty-ish

day 5: oh the horror, the chipping started. Challenge aborted. LOL

SECOND ATTEMPT

day 1: Brand: WJcon cosmetics or something.

day 2: learn more about this deck here and here

day 3: I use this agenda as my bullet journal.

day 4:

THIRD ATTEMPT

day 1:

day 2: oh, I need glasses. I’m short sighted.

This is where I gave up. One of the reasons I gave up was that I forgot to take pictures of my nails.

BONUS PICTURES:

and

And if you want to see more pictures, that don’t have nails in them, checkout my instagram account!


© 2013-2017 the owner travels to. All rights reserved.

Exploring Bucharest

This blog entry is LONG overdue. And I mean, 1 year overdue! wow! So, everything you’ll see here was recorded in 2016, but I never got around to do anything with all this material. Today is a good day to show you all that I gathered.

I like looking at old buildings and imagine their history – what did they look like when they were new, what did people think of them, the lives of those that lived in them as well as what did they think of the construction they called “home.”

Some buildings are nicer than others, but I rarely discriminate – I’m usually able to see beauty in the weirdest places and forms. All the images are from Bucharest, but you won’t see them in any travel guide as they’re generally from residential areas. The video will show you both sides of the river splitting  the city in half and was recorded in early spring – March, and then a few weeks or a month later.

The next few houses cannot usually be seen by tourists. Well, I forgot where exactly they are located, sorry.

I know where this one is. On a very quiet street, uptown, in a very posh and expensive area. The street has 2 lanes, one for each direction. In my opinion, the picture doesn’t make it justice, or maybe my memory is bad. The roof covers the sides, like a mountain house. I remember it was love at first sight when I laid my eyes on it the first time around.

The next one must have looked really good at first. I really like that patio in the “tower” – it must be my favorite feature of this house.

I wonder if anyone bought this next house. It looks really bad, but I see a lot of beautifying potential in it. Since [I’m pretty sure] it was on a quiet street, the possibilities are quite many for it.

Next, is an old and rather ugly apartment building. I believe its facade was redone, but it simply is not as impressive in my eyes. I forgot why I took a picture of it – perhaps the creepiness factor was what drove me to it. Maybe it looks better in real life? Anyways, you can easily see this one downtown as it is on one of the main street tourists are taken on a double-decked bus.

I also like mosaics. The one with blue tiles can be seen downtown in Unirii Square, in one of the fountains. I’m not sure if all the fountains have the same mosaic design, because I never really paid close attention. Perhaps they’re just similar? The brownish one was the floor of a shop uptown, in an old building. That’s all I remember.

And if you made it this far, maybe you want to take a short bus ride with me? Tourists don’t really get to see this scenery.

You should let me know if you want more posts like this one. I still have some unpublished pictures.

Until next time, stay safe!

[ps: i just started learning Chinese, so please don’t be too harsh on me]


© the owner travels to 2013-2017. All rights reserved.

How I lost weight

It seems that talking about a person’s weight turned into a taboo subject as it always ends up in a ‘body shaming’ topic. It seems everyone likes to point how the others are worse looking … but they forget to look into their conscience mirror to see how ugly their thinking is.

I’m not here to promote any secret magical diet given to me by Fairies. Sorry 😦 It’s not because I don’t want to share, but because I have yet to meet said Fairies. I also don’t want to tell you “You absolutely MUST lose weight” because in the end, it is your life and your body and you have the right to control them as you think it’s fit.

That being said, in a much earlier post I promised I would tell you more about how I managed to lose some weight. I never got around to do it.. until now.

Why did you want to lose weight?

The reasons for which I wanted to lose weight are simple: I couldn’t fit into my pants anymore and I didn’t want to go shopping for others as I really liked what I owned. I always bought larger shirts, so that wasn’t an issue. Just my pants.

So, what did you do to lose weight?

Let’s make a few things clear, shall we?

  1. I dislike working out – especially running or jogging.
  2. I’m trying hard to use my common sense.
  3. My common sense tells me that most “losing weight diets” don’t give long lasting results.

The first thing I did was analyzing my diet AKA what was I eating and when. I discovered:

  • I would eat the most in the evening and then I would go to sleep.
  • I also found out I was eating a lot of bread and not enough fruits and vegetables.
  • My eating pattern wasn’t  ‘regular’ – I never ate at the same hours.

When I realized a few of the things I was ‘doing wrong,’ I decided it was time to change all that. I never tried to follow this or that “losing weight recipe,” but I did try to see a common pattern in them and follow that instead.

I cut down on bread to the point of not eating any at all with any of my meals. I was left still hungry at first. Then, an idea occurred to me: what if I ate SLOWER by chewing my food more? and what if I drank more water?

This actually worked! I would chew more, and therefore I got the impression I was fuller! There is science behind this, so feel free to go search it yourself to convince yourself. I also started to eat more vegetables and white meat [just chicken, though I like fish too].

Not eating in the evening was the most difficult part though. I went and drank water every time I felt hungry. I started hating the water 😦 However, in the end, not eating in the evening started to feel OK, even normal…?

Another change I made was paying attention to how much I ate, AKA the size of my portions. Eating smaller portions means less ingested calories as well.

Did these changes do anything?

You mean, if I saw any positive results? Yes, I did. Or I wouldn’t have written this.

I do have to mention the results weren’t fast, like say in 1 week, but maybe more like a month? One month is the earliest I started to see a difference.

You should know that this “common sense diet” is actually a change in lifestyle. It doesn’t make one obsessed with counting calories, though doing that would help in faster results. I wouldn’t recommend it though. This “diet” doesn’t force one say “oh, I can’t have cake because I’m dieting,” because you can eat anything you want, just not too much.

Do you have any further tips?

Seriously? Wasn’t this enough?

Well, if you insist, the last piece of advice I have for you is to look for those diets doctors insist diabetic people follow. They are specially designed to keep diabetes and weight in check, and why wouldn’t they help other people as well?

If you like working out, you will also see faster results and your body will tone up as well.

I hope you find some of these tips helpful.


©2013-2016 the owner travels to. All rights reserved.

Thoughts on being a good person

Hello world.

Today’s topic is something we all should think about. Today’s topic is one of the reasons I started writing this blog. I’m not a good person, or better said, I’m not as good as I would like to be. However, this is something that defines “being a human, ” isn’t it?

But, what does “good person” mean?

“Good person” means anything you want it to mean. It can be a person with a kind heart who cares about the pain other people feel. It can be someone who simply wants to help everyone in need, be it a person, animal, plant, cause, insect, alien… you get the point.

A “good person” can be someone who wants to be the best at doing something: their job, a hobby, at school..

Can I be or become a good person?

This sounds like a really silly question. Of course you can be! Anyone can become a good individual if they so want. How to become a better person is a topic better discussed in a different entry though.


Back to the current subject, now.

What I noticed is that many people are mean these days. And with each passing day they become more and more mean. I wonder why is this happening.. It can’t be terrorism. Or not just that.

I think it’s because people take for granted way too many things these days, and each of them has the impression they rule the Universe when it’s the Universe ruling us. You don’t believe me? Just think about the force of gravity that keeps us on Earth, on the ground, or just think about who gives birth: the Universe decided only women can give birth. If these 2 examples are not proof that the Universe rules us, I don’t know what they are then.

Sadly, everywhere I go I see someone bearing hate feelings towards another. I see hate speech, hateful behavior, and a general lack of respect. All of these are proof that people are not “good.” A good person wouldn’t do all the above.

Ironically, there is a whole group of people that recently emerged. This group of individuals put up an image of “promoting love, kindness, and consideration towards others,” …. but by preaching. Preaching is not “being a good person either.” Preaching is trying to give the impression the person is loftier than the rest, but they actually aren’t because they still use a hateful speech when addressing others. This aspect is easily seen online when people discuss a controversial subject.

Trying to think of alternative ways of saying something can make you a better person. Walking away from a conflict can be a sign of a wiser or better person, and not sign of weakness. Announcing you’re walking away from the conflict doesn’t make you a better person though: you have to simply walk away and forget about it.


Am I good or better person by saying all of the above? No. What I’m saying here is something I may be doing wrong and I hope to help the readers to avoid making the same mistakes and choose to be better. 


©2013-2016 the owner travels to. All rights reserved.

I’m not very Eco-friendly but you can be so!

(if you want to, of course)

This post is not meant as a brag, nor as a judgement towards those who don’t do what I’ll talk about next.

Being Eco-friendly is seen as a good thing these days. And why shouldn’t it be? We are actually taking care of our planet by paying attention to what we throw away and how much.

But what inspired this post?

You wouldn’t believe me, but I had my kitchen sink clogged. The clog was well down the pipe, in the wall, and it was pretty bad. I used some products, and I thought I got rid of the clog, but I was terribly wrong.

I tried doing the dishes in the bathroom, but it was a nightmare. Then, a better idea popped into my head:

Why not using the sink, but letting it drain into a large bucket? I used the one meant for mopping. The idea worked like a charm! But there was still one tiny problem: the bucket would contain just so much water. Any more than that, and using it would be pointless.

Of course, I needed a different solution. The solution was to use less water when doing the dishes. Said Thought and done! This second solution worked even better: I needed to empty my bucket even more rarely.

I used the method for some 3 or 4 days, and noticing just how much water I’m wasting scared me. It scared me because I never realized just how much water I use.

I then noticed the same think when showering, because guess what? A few days after I manage to have my sink fixed, my tub’s drain pipe got clogged as well. I never saw the clog from the kitchen, but the one on the bathroom? it looked as if I shaved off my hair and that of my friends, and let it drain the tub. – I clearly didn’t do that.

I had to shower while containing the water in the tub, and then remove it somehow else with buckets, and what not. I almost never leave the shower running while using shampoo or shower gel. I removed about 4 or 5 buckets of water.

I think this is a lot. It didn’t look like a lot, and perhaps other people use more water. But, Do we really need to use 4 or 5 buckets of water? I think not!

For instance, sometime last year, they had to stop the hot running water, and it was actually during one of the cold months. I clearly needed to shower, and I boiled 1 big pot of water. When I used it, I mixed it with cold water, so it would have a good temperature. Do you want to know the result?

It was enough! I managed to wash my long hair, use conditioner, wash my body, and then properly rise everything off!

One thing IS certain: even if I mixed cold and hot water in a proportion of 1:1 I wouldn’t have had 4 or 5 buckets at the end, but 2 big pots of water just good to wash my body and hair with.

So, what am I doing wrong? Why do I waste so much water? Anyone experience this? Talk about your experiences in the comments below!


©2013-2016 the owner travels to. All rights reserved.

How I reduced my body odor

through my diet.

Hello there.

Everyone has body odor. It is one of the things humans and animals have in common. The body odor is used by animals and by humans for different purposes:

  • to recognize one another – this is why dogs bark at strangers: they don’t recognize their scent.
  • to select a mate – be honest: how many times have you been attracted to a person whose BO you disliked?         I thought so
  • to identify an ailment – sure, not all illnesses will change your BO, but some do.

However, as mean or racial as this sounds like, based on your race, you may smell more than other people. In case you didn’t know, East Asian people are the ones with least body odor on the planet. Among them, Koreans take the cake.

Of course, genetics also play an important role in how a person smells like naturally. Science showed us how some inactive genes mean that the person will have minimal body odor. These inactive genes can be found in some non-East Asian people. There are many other websites out there with better, in depth information on why we have body odor.

But this is not all there is to the BO we dislike so much:

What we eat, and sometimes the medicine we take also alters our body’s odor, and how strong it is. What I wanted to talk about was how my diet helped me reduce my body’s bad odor.

Now, remember:

I still have unpleasant body odor and I still sweat, so my BO is NOT completely gone. It is simply reduced, meaning while I still smell, it is not as strong as bad as it used to be!

The first thing you need to know is that I have bad stomach burns when I eat certain foods, especially spicy or fried stuff. What I did was to reduce to a minimum these types of foods. That’s because, let’s be honest:  they are yummy! You might think that this has nothing to do with how a person smells like, but it does!

Think about kimchi, pickles, or sour cabbage: they’re delicious, right? But, don’t they have some strong scent about them? Well, that scent is carried inside your stomach through the food itself, then it passes into your blood, and then to all of your body’s cells, including the skin. The skin sweats, and that sweat contains remnants of the stinky food you had. Do your biology homework, and see that I’m right! – or use your common sense-

Secondly, all that fried oil is full of toxins:  the more toxins you put in your system, the more bad body odor you release. Related to these toxins, I also gave up eating processed meats like hotdogs, sausages, and salamis. Ever checked to discover the real ingredients in these things? All I have to say is EWWW!

Then, I gave up touching and consuming garlic and onion. O_O YES! These 2 beloved aromatic plants were the ones guilty of most of my bad body odor. ;-; You know how bad your hands smell like after you peel and chop an onion bare handed? I dare you: try it out!

You probably have one question in mind right now:

How do you know garlic and onion made you smell bad? The answer is so easy, you won’t believe it!

After a few months of not eating these things I randomly had them is some dishes I got from relatives. They had cooked more food than they could eat and they shared it with me. They didn’t know I was ‘dieting’ and therefore not eating some of the ingredients. Any ways, I’m not the person to throw away foods without even trying them out.

I forgot if they had only onion (I know for sure they had onion, as my relatives never cook without it), or if there was some garlic in there too. In any case, the next day I could feel a strange scent around me, before showering. The feeling was BIZARRE, haha. It took me several minutes the culprit was my body!

Sadly, I could feel the scent even after showering! I felt it until the next day! I am not sure if by then I got used to it or it was gone. :/ What I do know is that I did throw away the left over food I received. Since then, I pay even more attention to what I eat.

Now. Don’t get me wrong: I also don’t eat onion and garlic because they’re bad for my stomach. I was never OK after eating them: I would either throw up without wanting or suffer with stomach burns. I thought it was normal, because I imagined everyone was feeling that and they just wouldn’t talk about it. 😦

Later on, or better said, in the recent years I found out I was wrong.

In any case, reducing or eliminating foods that cause a bad body scent is not enough. You will still sweat, I know I do, and it still is unpleasant. I still need a good deodorant, though I prefer a good antiperspirant. Showering daily is something that should be a given and not even mentioned, along with making sure to wear clean clothes. Of course, this can’t apply to those who consider water as a luxury.

I recently learned that  Japanese people, I believe it is mostly the ladies doing this, carry wet napkins [handkerchiefs] with them every day and everywhere they go. Apparently, they use it to remove excessive sweat, refresh and cool their bodies, and to clean their hands when needed. I think my summer bag will be a bit fuller this year.

How about you: What do you do to keep nasty body odor at bay? Let me know what you think in the comments below!


©2013-2016 the owner travels to. All rights reserved.

5 Reasons Why Men And Women Lose Weight Differently

Everyone wants to look and feel good regardless of their gender, with people often being rated based on their attractiveness level. Having a body that is on a slim side looks attractive and is also deemed healthier, and the number of those who want a slimmer body seems to be on the rise. This brings a new problem into the spotlight: men and women lose weight in a different way and at a different rate. Let’s have a look at 5 reasons why losing weight is different for women than it is for men.

 

A different approach to losing weight based on gender

Numerous women are visually attracted by a male who is muscular and lean, while most men fantasize about a slender woman, with an hourglass figure. These ideals make men and women use different routines when it comes to losing weight. A male will spend many hours in the gym lifting weights while women generally prefer the cardio machines. In addition to that, more women choose to hit the nearest eatery right after working out, as a reward for their efforts. This action defeats the purpose of the exercise routine, and causes the entire weight loss process to become difficult. It has been observed that men are more prone to stick to a regular workout regime without distractions, thus adding to its effectiveness.

 

Men have a more competitive mindset compared to women

Men’s competitive nature exerts a certain degree of influence on how the 2 genders view fitness. Males typically look at a workout to reach their goal: improving health and endurance levels. At the same time, the gym can be seen a place for friendly competition. Women, however, view exercising as more of a chore and not a healthy hobby. At the end of the day, feeling pressured to keep up a workout routine can decrease its benefits by a great deal. Women adopting a more competitive way of thinking have noticed faster results when it comes to losing weight.

 

Men and women approach hunger and food differently

Men usually eat only they feel hungry, while often times women use comfort food as an emotional crutch to relieve boredom, stress, or work related anxiety. Females are known to be emotional eaters while men prefer dealing with their feelings in a different and maybe more pro-active way. The way both genders deal with hunger and food in general is also dictated by the different hormones their bodies produce. Men release more leptin, also known as the “satiety hormone”. Women’s bodies release more of a “I’m hungry” hormone called ghrelin. Furthermore, men and women have different types of comfort foods: men prefer “mom’s cooking” while women mostly enjoy foods that give a quick pick-me-up such as cookies and chips.

 

Different percentages of muscle and fat compared to total body weight

Healthy and fit men are genetically designed to have a higher percentage of muscle compared to body fat. As an opposite, a female body is built with more fat and a softer appearance. Muscle growth is influenced by the higher levels of testosterone in a male’s body. Muscles need increased energy to work properly, and this is one of the reasons why men burn more calories at any given time. When comparing people of both genders with similar proportions, specialists noted that women have much lower metabolic needs. This translates into burning fewer calories for basic functions like breathing, brain activity, and even walking.

 

Hormonal fluctuation

Women are affected by monthly hormonal fluctuations, while men have a constant level of hormones released into their system. This is an aspect that influences everything related to the body’s well being. These hormonal changes also play a significant role in how much women eat compared to men. Women are genetically programmed to keep up a certain weight for a regular and healthy flow of reproductive hormones, and a significant drop has negative effects in the long run. Harsh dieting is linked to loss of fertility in women due to the body not being able to release enough reproductive hormones.

 

While these are a few guidelines worth taking into account, each person is different and a weight loss program should be chosen on an individual basis. If you pay attention to your body, you have much higher chances of achieving your fitness goal.

Washing my hair with plain water

Hello there~~~

I may not be the cleanest person out there, nor the most organized, but I make sure I don’t stink or look dirty when going out. I like showering right before going out. I wish everyone had this much courtesy.

Some of you like to use eco-friendly cleaning and grooming products, or products that are natural as they can be. This is perfectly fine, and I kinda envy you for going the extra mile. What I know for sure is that many people out there also try to find budget-friendly solutions for cleaning and grooming.

I also know that some tips and tricks work and some don’t. This is because I tried some of them out. The most recent one is the trick, or was it a piece of advice?, said that we can clean our hair just fine with plain running water. Crazy? Yes, I know.

It’s been at least a month since I read this trick, but I was too intrigued by it to let it go. So yesterday I tried it out. Not because I ran out of shampoo, but because I thought any day is just as good. I have greasy hair, but lately it doesn’t become as oily as it used to. I also had to wash it one day sooner, but I was busy doing other stuff.

Went in the shower and did my routine, without shampoo. I was nervous, weirded out, and dieing of curiosity to see if it works. I also haven’t used hair conditioner, to have a better glimpse of the result. Having to go out for a bit, I let the outside air dry my hair.

CONCLUSION AND IMPRESSIONS

It worked. It wasn’t perfect, especially at the roots, but I may have had to stay in there for longer. I don’t know. My hair felt heavier yesterday, but today it felt an looked better. My friend didn’t tell me I have to wash my hair, so I am pretty happy with the result.

I must warn you though, that the results depend on each person’s type of hair, and water. I don’t think I will do it again, unless I don’t have any shampoo left anymore. I wouldn’t recommend it as lifetime solution, this is up to whoever tries it.

METHOD

I used hot water, as much as I could stand, with high pressure. I let the water run on my hair while scrubbing the roots. I tried to do this for as long as it takes me to use shampoo, rinse, use conditioner, and rinse again. I probably should have done it for longer for better results.

In case you were wondering, I did use shower gel to wash my body. Plain water does little for me especially in summer.

Take care until next time.