Reviews and Other Stuff

Dear Amy by Helen Callaghan. Book & Audiobook Review

dear amy book by helen callaghan

 

Here’s a book that I started reading two years ago but I didn’t think of finishing it until recently. In fact, I didn’t even know if I was ever going to finish it because of several reasons. For example, even though the cover is really intriguing and nice, the first half of the book was quite difficult for me to follow because the writing seems a little too convoluted and the story’s pacing is a little too detached. Also, some choice of words by the author seems quite complicated for what the book really is. So, I naturally have lost interest in reading it. However, recently, I spotted the book again in my bookshelf and I decided to give it another go. This time, I listened to the Audible version of it and I was glad I did because my impression of the book has now completely changed.

 

dear amy book

 

As you can see judging by the pictures of the book, both front and back covers, you can deduce that the book is a thriller. In fact, a psychological thriller, to be specific. The story is about Margot Lewis, an English teacher in Cambridge who runs her advice column called “Dear Amy“. One day, she receives a letter from a missing girl named Bethan Avery, asking for help because she’s been kidnapped, doesn’t know where she is, and at the danger of being killed soon. Problem is, Bethan’s been missing for twenty years and is already presumed dead. How can a missing girl be writing letters now and had a chance to send it by mail? Is it a hoax? Could it be true? Hmmm.. intriguing, right? Bethan is not the only girl who has been missing. Ever since her disappearance, there were already a couple of young girls who’d been missing around the area. Margot had a student named Katie who had also disappeared recently. Something is seriously wrong and she’s determined to find out, no matter what.

 

dear amy book review

 

I love the interesting psychological concepts that the book was alluding to, like Dissociative Fugue, possibly MPD, and even hypnosis. As the plot unfolds and the story progresses towards the middle and ’till the end, you will find that the book is a heart-pounding experience with its own twists and turns. It completely changed my point of view especially upon listening to it via Audible because the narrator did a really good job of portraying the characters with her different accents and voice tones. Reading this book will probably still be a snoozefest, at least for me, but listening to the audiobook is a whole different story. So, I definitely recommend that you use Audible for this one.

 

I would love to tell you more about the story, but I would rather give you a clue: The first rule of fight club is – you do not talk about fight club. Got it?

 

 

Check out some of the psychologically thrilling books I’ve read or listened to below

 

 

How To Make Cat Hats

cat wearing a hat

 

This Pandemic has brought us a lot of worries and anxiety, no doubt. But, on the bright side, it has taught us the meaning of resilience. Speaking of the bright side of things, I have discovered another talent of mine. And yes, it’s the art of making cat hats or pet hats, apart from being now a haircutter, of course πŸ™‚

 

adam ellis tiny hats on cats

 

I did start making a few cat hats before, but it’s only been recently that I have honed my skills in becoming a cat milliner, lol. All because I stumbled upon a book by the artist, blogger, and Buzzfeed Illustrator Adam Ellis. His wonderful book called Tiny Hats on Cats is full of creative ideas and instructions on how to make cat hats. This cat hatmaking-book, which could also apply to any pets, be it a dog or any pet that can stay still for about a few seconds (enough to wear the hat), is a lot of fun to browse and will put you in a crafty mood.

 

how to make cat hats

 

There are several cat hat styles shown in this book. You can choose from Sherlock Hat, Gondolier Hat, Pirate Hat, or even a Graduation Hat (pretend like your cat is about to graduate this Spring from what feels like an eternal homeschooling on how to stop asking for treats, lol). Most of the cat hat styles are easy to do because the instructions in the book are pretty much easy to follow. Also, the materials needed to do the cat hats are pretty much easy to compile since most of them are probably already in our homes. The only thing you’ll ever need is a tiny dash of creativity, a bit of persistence, and a really patient cooperative cat (like my cat Bibi, pictured above).

 

In this post, I’ll show you how to make a Party Hat. It’s probably one of the simplest cat hat styles to do, as illustrated in the book.

 

Materials:

 

materials for cat hatmaking

*Glue Sticks

*Glue Gun

*Bone Folder (not that necessary, but very useful anyway)

*X-Acto Knife (a.k.a. hobby knife. Please be very careful with this because this is very sharp).

*Hair Cutting Scissor (prefer this than the regular scissor because this is more precise, and besides, I have been practicing on how to cut hairs with this :-)).

*Compass (depends on the hat style, in this post, this is not that necessary)

*Construction Paper

*Pattern Paper (optional)

 

Instructions:

 

Cone:

 

how to make cat party hat

 

From the corner of a Construction Paper or any sturdy paper, cut a square piece measuring about 3 inches on each side.

 

Cut or make a quarter-circle out of this square piece. You may or may not need a compass for this. Estimating your cut works just fine.

 

Once it looks triangular, cut the tip with the scissor curving through.

 

You can now make a cone shape out of this figure by gluing each side (careful with the hot glue gun). Notice the small opening at the top. That is where the hat fringe is going to be.

 

Fringe:

 

cat party hat

 

Using a Pattern Paper, cut a rectangular strip that is about 6 inches in length and has a tapered height from 3 inches down to 2.

 

Create the fringe using a scissor. Trying not to cut all the way through.

 

Curl the fringe using a bone folder, the tip of a scissor, or even a pen.

 

From the longest fringe, roll the strip inward and glue it together.

 

Insert and glue the curled fringe into the cone you just made.

 

You now have a cute party hat.

 

tiny hats on cats

 

The million-dollar Q is how do you make the hats stay on top of the cat’s head? Hmmm…that’s always going to be a challenge :-).

 

Bottom line, if you are bored in this Pandemic, or if you have some extra time to bother your cats, dogs, or be it any pets, try making this hat. This will be a very fun activity but most likely only for you (or your Instagram, perhaps) and maybe not for your cats :-).

 

What have you been crafting lately?

 

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Kaja Dream Puff Radiant Mousse Primer, Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener & Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush Review + Swatches

Kaja Beauty

 

Hello. How are you all? I can’t believe it’s been more than a month since the lockdown. Entering the fifth week of social distancing is starting to feel like a drag. I miss a lot of things and I’m sure you miss a lot of stuff too. I still hope that this is all going to be over soon but in the meantime, let’s put on some makeup and pretend like we’re going somewhere nice and fun πŸ˜€. Speaking of makeup, I have a few suggestions from Kaja Beauty which you may want to look into right now because Sephora is having a Spring Sale Event. Just use the code SPRINGSAVE.

 

There are a lot of Kaja Beauty products that I love. From their Stamp Wing Eyeliner (reviewed HERE) down to their Stamp Blushes (swatched HERE), Kaja is a brand that won’t disappoint and they keep having exciting new releases that will for sure make you curious. I had the opportunity to try their Mochi Pop Blushes, Mousse Primer, and their Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener, among other things. So, check out what I think about these products below.

 

Kaja Beauty Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush review

 

Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush (0.15 oz: 19 USD) – This is probably one of the best cream-to-powder bouncy blushes I’ve ever tried. Yes, the texture of this is really soft and totally bouncy to the touch, and most all, each compact is loaded with very pigmented shades that are very easy to blend with just the finger. Apart from the cute packaging, each blush shade is long-wearing and has subtle shimmers that add a slight dimension to the face especially during this bright season.

 

Kaja Beauty Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush

 

01 Aura – peach pink with golden shimmer

02 Atmosphere – muted neutral dusty rose with subtle shimmer

03 Spoils of Mars – fuchsia rose with subtle shimmer

 

Kaja Beauty Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener Review

 

Kaja Beauty Dream Puff Radiant Mousse Primer

 

Dream Puff Radiant Mousse Primer (1.94 oz: 19 USD) – This light and airy mousse primer which comes in only one shade (Peach Glow, a universal shimmering golden peach) gives a lit-from-within look or effect. This has Marshmallow Root Extract and Hyaluronic Acid that primes the skin and settles with a slight shimmery finish that can add radiance after every foundation. I really like this a lot especially when you want to add a touch of healthy-looking glow on the face. The only caveat is the dispenser which tends to release too much of the product. Other than that, this also blurs the pores and preps the skin for a nice canvas.

 

Kaja Beauty Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener

 

Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener (0.19 oz: 19 USD) – I was really curious about this undereye brightener. I wasn’t sure if this was going to conceal well or if this was just going to add some radiance along the undereye, or both. This also comes in one tone, which is quite peachy and has a radiant finish. I would describe this product as quite similar (or perhaps even better) than the Tatcha Pearl Tinted Eye IlluminatorΒ (seen HERE) which truly brightens the undereyes and gives you that fully wide-awake hydrated look but this won’t totally hide the dark circles well on its own. You may wear this alone for a naturally bright undereye, but you could also layer this with a concealer to totally hide the dark circles.

 

Bottom line, I love all these Kaja goodies especially now that we’re into sporting the natural look. The Mochi Pop Blushes are great for showcasing the natural curves of our cheeks, the Cat Nap Under Eye Brightener is also good for looking like we’ve been sleeping just fine πŸ˜€, and the Mousse Primer is perfect for that radiant look effect during this quarantine-era.

 

Kaja Mochi Pop Bouncy Blushes

 

Stay beautiful and healthy.

 

*Lots of thanks to Kaja Beauty for providing these products. All opinions and reviews herein are by the editor.

 

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