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Bunny Bites: Port-FOOD-landia

1 Feb

I love visiting Portland, Oregon to see my friends and enjoy the cold air and snow of a town with all four seasons, and by God, the food there makes the trip even more worthwhile!

I had asked you guys if you wanted to see more foodie reviews, and the answer was a very loud YES (or maybe more of a “LIKE” since people are all on Facebook these days). Well get ready to have your eyeball taste buds blown (they exist. Trust me on this one)!

SWIFT LOUNGE
My first afternoon in Portland, we hustled on over to Swift Lounge for their fantastic Happy Hour and.. FONDUUUUUE! It’s not often than a tiny dive bar sports the finesse of a fondue, but there it was!

Behold: Fondue fries! Delish cheesy fondue melt on top of crispy salted fries!

And of course, we got a pot of their fresh fondue! On a cold early evening, these totally hit the spot! Came with the usual cured meats, breads, and small fruits.

My friend Meeps ordered this suuuper yummy cheesy pasta. CHEESE IS THE WORD!

More deliciousness after the jump!

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Korea Day 1 Continued: Cheese,Shopping, and Beer, Repeat.

3 Oct

So to continue our day from the last post!

We met up with our long lost buddies Liz and Nara at Sinchon station! It’s been ages since we’ve seen them… Hello Kitty Nerd party, I think??

We headed straight on over to CM Box for lunch, which is home of the AMAZING SCOOP CHEESE PIZZA THING. The pizza is in a little pan and it’s mostly cheese and other ingredients on top of a super thing crust )kind of like a flour tortilla?). We got a Camembert cheese pizza, and a sweet potato pizza. DELISH. We also split a plate of creamy seafood pasta and carbonara pasta, too… DROOL.

Camembert pizza comes with a random pentagram on it made with mayo. NICE.

Liz and Nara looking totally adorable ❤

In total contrast to this photo fo Will and I, where I'm holding a plate of pickles and forcing myself to have a double chin. I rule.

More on the day after the jump!

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Korea Day 0 & 1: Airline woes and Pokin around

1 Oct

I’ve got a few minutes to kill before we have to go meet our friends at the station, so I thought I’d do a quickie post describing our first epic day of traveling!

We left on Friday September 31, for what was supposed to bea 2 leg flight- first from Los Angeles to San Francisco, then from there to Seoul. WELL. Thanks to United, and the weather in SF and the fact that they only had ONE LANE open for incoming flights that morning, our plane was about an hour and a half late to SFO, which meant we totally missed our connecting flight. They rescheduled us and we had to take a later flight from SFO to Narita (JAPAN!!! WTF) THEN switch again to get to Seoul. It was a lovely, very late flight, and we luckily made it in time to Narita with 10 minutes to spare before boarding started. Needless to say, it was a stressful flight. Also, the food was so incredibly terrible on the flight that I had stomach aches all night and all morning :/

Once in Narita, I needed an alcoholic pat on the back.

My neck pillow is doubling as a mohawk, and my yummy alcoholic chi-hi is helping me not kick every United Airlines employee in the face.

Thank you chu-hi for existing.

We got to Seoul about 4 hours later than planned but considering our unplanned trip to Japan before Koera, I’d say that’s not too bad!

We took the airport bus to Sinchon ($10! SO cheap!) and hopped off, got lost for about 30 minutes before finding our hotel.. it’s super cheap and really nice for the price! That’s because it’s in the “love hotel” district in Sinchon! haha. Sinchon is the area that’s between to major universities in Seoul, Hongik University (the leading arts uni in S. Korea), and Ehwa Women’s university. SOOO there are a lot of love hotels in this area for those college kids who wanna get their mojo on, haha. Anyway the hotel is pretty cool! I did some pics and a little video tour of it this morning if you’re interested in our love-hotel-ness.. haha.

Hotel fron. It's French, yo. Except.. not really at all.

Konked out, and got up pretty early today (Oct 2nd!) and went exploring..

We had breakfast at the luxurious Paris Baguette.. nomnom.

Will and I split an english muffin sammich, french toast with honey, and a weird sausage may corn thing. DELICIOUS.

The innards of my French toast.

This paris baguette was pretty posh!

We were admiring our STACK of Korea won currency. Apparently they only recently made the 50,000 won bill, but when I changed my money over they didn’t have any so I got a whooole bunch of 10,000 won bills instead (approx $10 bills)

Rollin deep.

After that, we headed down a shopping street that leads from Sinchon to Ehwa Women’s university and saw lots of cute things on the way…

Baskin Robbins halloween ad.. why isnt the Baskin Robbins in america this badass? I want cute halloween cakes!!

Hello Kitty Cafe! We shall be back....

We actually poked around Ehwa University a little bit. The grounds were really beautiful. Check out this amazing structure built into a hill!! There are class rooms, student gathering area, and shops inside either side of the hill!

Will is impressed by this hobbit-like feat of architecture.

On the way back to Sinchon, we totally saw this. Geez, THANK GOODNESS I WAS WONDERIN WHERE I WAS GONNA GET MY BLOOMIN ONION FIX! haha.

A view of the big intersection by Sinchon station

I’m really excited to see our friends Liz and Nara again! They moved to Seoul earlier this year and we’ve really missed them! We’re meeting up with them in… uhh an hour! YAY!

I’m sure my posts will get to be a little more exciting than this later on down the road 😉 Stay tuned, kids!

Japan Day 11/LAST DAY!: Koenji is my new love

8 Sep

After a pleasant bullet train ride, I made my way to Koenji to spend my last day in Japan with Tavuchi!

She was kind enough to let me stay at her place for one night before I headed back to America. She was pretty amped to show me more of her town and all the fun things to do. thankfully, it was a nicely overcast day where I wasn’t melting in the Tokyo heat for once!

As I mentioned before, Koenji is a great little place just 2 stops west of Shinjuku station on the JR Sobu line train. It’s calm and friendly, and sort of like not being in Tokyo at all!

Tavuchi helped me lug my heavy suitcase up her 3 flights of stairs to her apartment, and we prettied ourselves up a bit for a stroll through her hood. Tavuchi also blogged about our date day, too, so you can look at her post and pics there ❤

Before we left her place, I saw this amazing thing on her coffee table. Tavuchi said it was her roommates'.... IT'S AMAZING.

Our first stop wast to visit Tavuchi’s friend Toko (who I met on Day 3 in Japan), who runs the store Hikari in Koenji! Hikari is full of great vintage, remade, and original clothing from all over. It’s super quirky in there, I love it!

A mini shrine in the middle of the store. All of the photographs are either customers or Toko's friends she snapped while out and about.

Knickknacks and paddywacks galore!

How cute is Toko? She is giving us a proper farewell ❤

More of the day and pics after the jump!

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Japan Day 10 & 11: Mostly food & Nostalgia, and GIRLS’ LIPS =0

4 Sep

On August 1st, I rolled my butt out of the fold out bed, tried to make my face not look like a melting mess, and set out for my full day of Osaka adventure by myself. Nicole had to work until the afternoon so I was on my own to visit my old haunts and be a creepy lady on the streets of Osaka until evening.

I hit up Namba and the Minami Osaka area first and worked my way north through all of the shops that I used to like to frequent.

Can't start the day without a proper breakfast. To the Chococro! The most delicious chocolate croissants ever! And of course, some sort of mystery mayonaise corn pizza kinda thing.

When I saw this, I first thought, oh my god it's THAT damn hot here that they'd want a -2 degrees celcius bar to hang out in?? WTF! Then, later, I found out that they meant the BEER was super cold. Not the room. HURR HURR.

This is super messed up, but I regret not getting these. FIRST OF ALL: ZIMA is still a thing in Japan. It has been sicne it came out, unlike its debut in the US where it came out, flopped, and was tagged the drink of losers. SECOND OF ALL: This is part of a new promotion, where each bottle comes with a set of lips. ACTUAL MOLDS OF MODELS' LIPS. They're rubber, and you put them around the mouth of the zima bottle. When you drink from it, it's as if YOU ARE KISSING THAT MODEL'S LIPS. How. Messed. Up. Is That. But I love it.

More insanity after the jump:

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Japan Day 8 & 9: By my one-sy to Osaka: Food, Rilakkuma, More Food.

29 Aug

I’m falling a bit behind with these posts (and it feels like it was a lifetime ago…!) but trying to catch up!

On July 30th, I woke up a little tired from a crazy night at the Harajuku Kawaii event, I packed up, said goodbye to Caro, and started the “vacation” portion of my trip! I had buffered in a few extra days at the end of my Japan stay to spend time with my old friends in Osaka, and I was really glad to have the chance to relax and not think about business things for a few days.

Nice long quiet train rides are the bees knees. I tucked into my delicious bento lunch I got and finished most of Tina Fey’s “Bossypants” book in the 2 and a half hours it took me to get to Osaka.

Sushi "sandwiches" with ride and nori on the outside. So yummy!

Yakisoba sandwich, and salmon roe onigiri. I was a little piggy and ate all of this.

More of this post after the jump!

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Japan Day 7: Asobisystem presents “Harajuku Kawaii” event + peek at PARCO’s Bearbricks’ Exhibit

16 Aug

Friday, July 29th was insanity in a bottle.

Caro and I hopped off the bullet train, made it to our hotel room, and then managed to get ready and back out the door by 4pm-ish!

The Harajuku Kawaii event was being held in honor of model agency Asobisystem‘s 4th Anniversary, featuring fashion shows, musical performances, and a talk with 6%DOKIDOKI‘s Sebastian and renowned photographer Yasumasa Yonehara (AKA “Yone”).

Sebastian had been kind enough to invite us as VIP guests to the event, so we got to feel kinda fancy and go backstage and watch all the madness go down. We also go to meet up with the super hardworking Kira, who is the main photographer for Tokyofashion.com, and a total sweetheart. He had to get to work shooting photos down on the main floor, but Caro and I were able to relax in the VIP balcony area where we could watch the show from above.

View from the balcony area.

Someone stopped me for a "street" fashion snap, too 🙂 Photo by ChangeFashion.net!

The first set of the fashion show portion were brands Spinns Harajuku, Grimoire, and galaxxxy.

Super fun coordinates from SPINNS Harajuku (they also have a branch in Osaka too <3). Photo courtsey of Kira of Tokyofashion.com

Grimoire model

Set of Grimoire models. Photo courtesy of Kira of TokyoFashion.com.

Models from the first set of the fashion show take their bows/end walk.

After the first portion, bands Astro and Ram Rider performed on stage.

Astro performed a short set of slightly beachy-hip hop beats.

Ram Rider performed electro tunes, but for some reason, it was mostly covers of other songs electronified. The style of music they chose to cover ranged from Daft Punk (cool, appropriate) to Brazilian chanting music (uhmm what?).

But I can fogive their musical confusion because they have LIGHT UP SUITS. Hello, Tron Band!

After this performance, there was a short fashion show comprised of student work under the name “Replicant,” which.. I didn’t get any great photos of so I’ll just skip over that quickly. After that, 6%DOKIDOKI’s show was up, and it was definitely the most energetic performance of the night!

It was definitely a full on performance combined with fashion show, featuring their two main models, Yuka and Vanii, and German, French, and Dutch models dancing in chorus with them.

Vanii started off the show with a rough and tumble attitude and snarky glare at the crowd. I LOVE this photo of her! Taken by Kira of Tokyofashion.com, of course!

Yuka does a little dance for the crowd.

All the while, she's sporting this adorable bunny ear/antennae hairdo! Photo courtesy of Kira of Tokyofashion.com.

And here’s a quick video I shot so you can get a feel for how insane it got with the dancing and the.. giant rabbit costumed person who came out later! So amazing!

After the 6%DOKIDOKI show, a panel of guests came out to talk about the origins of Harajuku street fashion and what it’s developed into today. Of note, panelists included 6%’s Sebastian, Photographer Yone, and musician and model Kyaari Pamyupamyu (also known as “Carrie”). Yone is quite famous for his fashion magazine editing and photography, the founding of CexWork, his own “checki” instax camera design, and also his blog he does for Hypebeast. Kyaari, if you’ve somehow managed to NOT hear of her by now, is the newest, hottest thing in Japanese pop music, having made a real hit with her debut single “PonPonPon.” It’s goddamn catchy, is what it is.

Kyaari and Yone on stage during the talk show. Photo courtesy of Tokyofashion.com

The full panel of guests for the talk show.

After the talk show, we went backstage to congratulate everyone, and take some photos! If you’d like to see lots of photos from backstage and more photos of the fashion show itself, make sure to check out Tokyofashion.com’s exclusive coverage in their special 6%DOKIDOKI feature here!

Tokyofashion.com photographer, Kira, snaps the 6%DOKIDOKI models after the show.

Kira also took this fabulously classy photo of Sebastian and I right after that, haha.

Okay, so right after this was a little intermission of sorts. We were invited to go with some of the DOKIDOKI crew to go to the VIP opening party for the Bearbricks exhibit at the PARCO department store in Shibuya, but the event at Harajuku Kawaii was still ongoing! So we nipped out for a quick trip to Parco with the staff and saw some really cool Bearbricks stuff!

It was raining outside so I didn’t get a shot of the GIANT Bearbricks out front, but here is a photo from Tokyofashion.com that they shot a few days prior:

Giant Bearbricks!

There was an insane line to get into the VIP party, and.. it was mostly bros! haha. Weirdly enough, we bumped into people we knew there, such as Mamy and another of Caro’s friends! I even saw Hello Kitty Mama (Yuko Yamaguchi) there, too!

A Rilakkuma and Bearbrick collaboration piece.

Gatachapin Bearbrick!

The gallery was MEGA CROWDED!

Yuka poses next to the 6%DOKIDOKI collaboration Bearbrick inside the case.

Caro and I even posed next to a REAL MOVING BEARBRICK MASCOT! It was sort of terrifying because we didn't know there was a person in it until it started moving.... EEEEK SCARY WHERE ARE ITS EYESSS!

We were there for maybe.. 15 to 20 minutes. Then we were whisked away again to see the end of the Harajuku Kawaii event! Unfortunately, we missed Kyaari’s performance, buuut thanks to my buddies at Tokyofashion, at least I can show you a quick pic of it! It looks like her skirt is American Apparel?

A collage of Kyaari's first live performance! Photo courtesy of Tokyofashion.com

At the very end of the event, the organizers had all the models and fans line up close to the stage and do a cute photo op/cheer to celebrate Asobisystem’s Anniversary. Check out how cute this video I took is… first they practice, then they do it FOR REALS! Cameo of my face.

You can take a gander at some of the models who were involved in this show, mostly famous bloggers and shop girls from around Tokyo,and aspiring models.

After this, many things happened, including having a quick bite with Valerie and her husband, going to the official after party at Club Asia, and having late night izakaya times with the 6%DOKIDOKI crew well into the night. We had to taxi it back to the hotel around 3am, but we made it there alive! WHOO!

Many, many more photos that I did not post on this blog are located on my Flickr towards the bottom, so make sure to check it out!

Of course, I was not able to get photos of every single brand and musical performance since we were running around so much, so please take a look at these MUCH MORE DETAILED reports over at TokyoFashion.com and more photos at ChangeFashion.