Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Reminiscing 2014

Time really does fly..
With a blink of eyes, the first month of 2015 is coming to an end..

Some of my 2014 memorable events include:

1. Becoming a Mac user
Around this time of last 2014, I finally changed my DELL laptop to a Macbook Pro. Not adapting to the entire different system, I clung tightly to my DELL and almost regretted buying a Macbook. But now, I'm starting to appreciate the fast speed of Macbook. I bought the retina version so graphic wise is hands down better. It's also lighter and *ahem* classier my bulky DELL. Most importantly, it doesn't lag and I don't need to suffer the 'blue screen of death' every time I on my laptop!!

2. CNY with family
Relatives came back for CNY in Feb and I played Rummy the first time of my life! It's surprisingly addictive x)

3. Buddy for Kagawa Research Exchange Program
I was a student buddy for Kagawa medical students who came for the research exchange program. Although not as active as I was for the 7th ISMS, I tried to accompany them as much as I could and was happy to make new acquaintances with the Japanese students.

4. Braces
Also, I had my braces on in February..which I'm grateful that my parents are supportive of (although initially, they're not)..
The queue for braces in Brunei is approximately 4 years of waiting line..hence, I went to Miri for it and chose the ceramic braces (which costed even more)

5. Green Xchange
Wore tudong again after my A-Level days!! This was for the Green Xchange program to raise awareness of recycling and help the people in need at the kampongs.

6. Special Study Module 2 (SSM2) Research
Commenced a full year research on Chronic Kidney Diseases in Children of Brunei Darussalam, along with my supervisors. Really enjoy doing research and writing up a paper. Submitted my abstract to the XII Asian Congress of Paediatric Nephrology and was given the trainee's grant, which exempted me from all the conference charges. However, I still have to pay for my own ticket and accommodation but my supervisor was kind enough to fight for a scholarship from my university. I felt really bad as I turned them down because the congress was at New Delhi and my parents were very very against it. Still, I'm very grateful that my hardwork was recognised by my supervisors :)

7. KK Anatomy trip
Went to Kota Kinabalu for an one month intensive anatomy course! Didn't regret joining the course as it was really beneficial..I could appreciate the clinical anatomy more. Although not a master at it, but this has definitely give me an overall and better picture of the human body. It was my first experience with cadavers as well. Remembered I was rather hungry every time after the hand-on session at the anatomy lab...must be the formaldehyde that stimulates the hunger!!
Since we were prepared lunch boxes (with lots of rice and oily vegetables or curry most of the time), I gained a lot of weight!!! :( Therefore, my room mate and I went to gym almost everyday!! Must not gain weight!

8. National Consumer Day Art Competition
Decided to try my luck by submitting a last minute drawing for the National Consumer Day Art competition organised by JKR and Ministry of Development on the title Kehidupan Sejahtera and my drawing reflected how I see Brunei as; a relatively safe and peaceful country. Wasn't expecting anything but received the phone call that I actually won the first prize for the senior category. Very glad that I joined, despite being out of practise for years..

9. L coming back
L came back for only a month and we got to spend some time together. The usual food adventures, movie marathons, etc.

10. 8th International Summer Medical School (ISMS)
After being a student buddy for the 7th ISMS, I was back as the opening & closing ceremony committee in the 8th ISMS. Met a lot of new people and grew closer with my medic8ion buddies <3

1st medic8ion formal group photo - the classic Black & White theme~

11. Blood Donation Drives
Organised 2 blood donation drives along with Blood Donation Centre, RIPAS Hospital and my fellow student council colleagues. Although short-handed and lack of manpower, we were still managed to collect about 80 blood bags for both drives! Thank you everyone for helping out!

12. Reunion with 7th ISMS's buddies
Kana, Suzuha and Shun actually came back to Brunei to visit us!! All the great memories from 2013~
I bought the sky lanterns for all of us, since I didn't get to do so last year. Kana really love the lanterns after she watched Tangled (her favourite Disney cartoon)! I was really happy she enjoyed it.

13. Diabetes Awareness Campaign
Organised a Diabetes Awareness Campaign with my other 3 course mates for our SSM3. We brainstormed and prepared for the event for about a month, negotiated with different parties for sponsorships, logistics, approvals, etc and thankfully, the event turned out to be successful, attracting over 150 people to our campaign. I agreed that our approach lacked sustainability but I hope it would, at least, brought some impact to the community on diabetes awareness and prevention of diabetes complications.

Special thanks to ButraHeidelberg Cement Sdn Bhd and Nur Wanita Restaurant & Catering Services for our food catering, Hers Kitchen Cooking Class for co-organising the healthy cooking competition, L.K.K Employment Agency for the fruit hampers, Best Integrated Engineer Solution & Supplies Sdn Bhd for the banners and lastly, MPK Kapok for agreeing and supporting us in co-organising the entire event.

I've learnt to work in a team, compromise with other members, come up with new ideas when the initial plan was rebutted, source out for sponsorships, writing up official paperworks and documents to obtain approvals, networking with different allied health professionals, etc. I was given the opportunities to learn all these that I could not have learnt in a classroom.

14. My 21st birthday
Legal age.

15. Annual family trip: Hainan Island
Back to Hainan, China to search for my 'roots' and learn more about my heritage. I should learn how to speak Hainanese. Shame on me :(
The sceneries are breath-taking and I would love to visit again..Scorching sun that got me tanned ten times more but beautiful beaches.

December was also the month that I lost someone I dearly love..

"Mom, why do the best people die early?"

"When you're in a garden, which flowers do you pick?"

"The most beautiful ones."

I believe he is currently at a better place now.
I hope and will try my very best to make you proud.
I wish you could see my graduate...

May you rest in peace..
I love you.

I will bring all these memories with me, regardless of the good or the bad ones, and forward to 2015 (hopefully, a better year).

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Review: Liese Hair Dye - Ash Brown

I only dye my hair once per year, because the colours I chose were not very bright so when my black hair roots grew, it wasn't very obvious. Hence, I don't really mind and let it be..

I have only tried Cassis Berry (dyed twice using Cassis Berry)
Cassis Berry is 3-star brightness. I can definitely see the colour change but it's more brownish than pink. 

All Liese colours are brown based with slight colour variety and brightness. So, even if it says Pink, it's actually brown with slight tinge of pink. 

Since I've changed both my phone and laptop, I had to dig out all these unedited pictures of my hair to show the results:

 Under yellow light: The brown was so obvious!

Under natural sunlight

Last summer, I've decided to try Ash brown (also a 3-star brightness dye)

One of the reason why I love using Liese is because it's extremely easy to use! Basically, you squeeze out the dye and it comes out as colour bubble foam, which you massage them all over your hair and scalp (like shampoo-ing).

Each box of hair dye comes with a pair of gloves and conditioner after dying..and I'm not sure what secret ingredient do they use but I think my hair is super silky after dying, in contrast to a lot of people whose hair go dry after dyeing. 

It's also suitable for oily hair. My fringe is super oily, hair looks like I've sprayed oil on them even though I washed my hair the night before..
but after using Liese, I felt like it's less oily and more silky!! Hair doesn't seem to look or feel damaged as well.

One bottle of Cassis Berry Liese was barely sufficient for my hair (almost-reaching-my-waist length!) but I still used one only..that's probably why the colour doesn't pop as much as I expected it to. The lather didn't foam until the very end and that worried me a bit. I thought my bottle of dye would go wasting since I can't get the lather to foam and the colour won't stay on my super long hair...

This was also why I decided to cut my hair short before dyeing. 

Before: brown hair from the previous Cassis Berry

After: Natural soft brown with a hint of ash

I felt like my hair became darker for the same level of brightness (3-stars), but this is probably because Cassis berry has a pink undertone colour while ash brown is more of a neutral brown. 
The hair ends also became darker and consistent brown in overall. No more black roots yay!

The application is just like shampooing my hair, so I do not have to worry that I'll miss some parts un-dyed. I avoided massaging too much of my scalp and roots area to achieve a consistent ash brown; brighter hair colour at the roots.

 Under yellow light: It looks like black though!!

After 1 month, natural sunlight: The colour will be brighter after a few hair washes. I really love the colour now!! 

After 1 month, under yellow light: The colour is so pretty under yellow light. It's not as yellow brown as Cassis Berry and I think it looks healthier with a darker shade

I would like to try other colours in the future, probably brighter ones? Then, I'll have to worry about my dark roots :(