Saturday, June 29, 2013

Google Reader Subbies: Update your feeds now!

You may have heard by now that Google reader is closing down this weekend.

As of 1st July, 2013, it will be no more. I'm assuming you are reading this post because you are a Things I Love (TIL) subscriber and I'd hate to not see you here when July 1st ticks over. So, if you haven't already, now is the time for to look for alternative RSS feed aggregatoers to get a fix of your favourite news and blog (including TIL) updates.

Image credit: Gizmodo
So what are the good alternatives out there? Well it depends on your personal preferences and how you like your news delivered (yes, even electronically, there are many device options to choose from!). Here's my picks of best RSS feed readers out there.

If you love accessing news on the go:
Feedly is undoubtedly the most popular and user-friendly for those who get their software in the form of an app. It has a beautiful and easy to use interface that can be tweaked to your liking - even to look like your old Google Reader. It is also multi-platform from mobile devices to web desktop views. 

If you like your products to be multi-platformed: 
A good alternative to the older text based feed is is Pulse, which presents the feeds in a pictorial format. So if you like your visuals, and like recommended feeds to be pushed to you, definitely take a look at this reader.

For a blog dedicated reader:
Finally if most of your feeds are from blogs or you just want a blog dedicated feed, then you can't go past BlogLovin. It is one of the more mature readers and many bloggers already have Bloglovin on their blogs so it's very easy for you to follow them.

So readers, get ready to subscribe to Things I Love via these new RSS readers. I'd hate to have you miss my blog posts after this Sunday. You can subscribe and follow TIL via:

BlogLovin (click through to subscribe)
Email Subscription

Of course, you'll also find me on social media channels Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

x A

Monday, June 24, 2013

A Quick Update


I've been MIA online lately and I thought I'd do a short update on the happenings of my life so that you don't think I've dropped off the planet and completely disappeared.

Over the last 2 weeks, I had to take an unplanned time-out from blogging to deal with the issues of the real world. I've also been sick with sniffles and migraines (this freezing weather is not helping); the resultant lethargy made blogging in the evenings a difficult task and I've even had to take time off work.

To make matters worse, my hives are back and I'm back on anti-histamines to control them on a daily basis again. Yes, stress is getting the better of me right now and there are a lot of things going on on in my life that is causing me sleepless nights (still dealing with the painfully complex Estate Administration).

But I want to let you know that I've managed to sort a few things out last week and am feeling 100% better and more positive. In fact, I'm looking forward to many exciting events over the next month, one of which is blogging related. I can't wait to share it with you in the coming weeks.

So apologies for going quiet without any explanation and please bear with me as I get my blogging mojo back and normal blogging will resume later this week.

x A

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Birthday Giveaway Winners

Ok folks, I know you've been waiting patiently for me to announce the Birthday Giveaway winners and I don't want to make you all wait any longer.

First off, I want to say I was overwhelmed by the number of entries I received for the competition (just over 250 entries). I loved reading all your responses of your favourite birthday celebrations - from surprises, arrivals of babies to small gatherings with friends to grand gestures from partners and boyfriends. They were many touching and inspiring stories and a few of them gave me the "awww" moment.  

After reading all these stories, I have decided to celebrate my future birthdays with more fanfare because your stories have shown that no matter what age, you can still have amazing birthdays if you are surrounded by people important in your lives. 

Using a random number generator, the following lucky ladies have come up as winners of the birthday prizes. 

Winner 1: Anna Nguyen

 Winner 2: Stefanie Vastianna

Winner 3: Amy Orvin 

Winner 4: Rebbecca Bird 

Congratulations ladies. You have till 5 days (June 9th) to get in touch with me via email to provide your delivery address so I can get these prizes out to you. If I don't hear from any of the above winners by this time, I will  be re-drawing and announcing new winners. 

Finally, I'm always humbled by your continued support of my endeavours to be a part-time blogger whilst doing full time work which isn't the most easiest things to do at the best of times. I have to pinch myself sometimes that I have readers who support me through all these years (it's coming to my 3 year blog anniversary next month!). To you loyal readers, you have all have my heart-felt thanks. 

So until the next post, stay well!
x A 

Calvin Klein Dark Obsession for Men

Today I have a review of Calvin Klein's latest mens' fragrance to share with you. To get an impartial view from the stronger sex, I've enlisted the help of a male friend to give me his view of this latest juice offering.

Calvin Klein Dark Obsession for Men
Official marketing description and packaging
Branded as a bold, modern oriental fragrance that is powerfully masculine and intensely sensual. Its sleek and matte black bottle with silver writing gives it an edgy feel and helps to portray the essence of bold, powerful and sexy.

He says:
At first, there is a slight fruitiness and sweetness smell I can't quite put my finger to. Actually, the overall scent is fairly light with a bit of spiciness and musky intonation that remind me of some sort of fresh potpourri.

I'd say this is not a winter scent as it's very light - more like a spring or autum scent that wears well for a 3 to 4 hours on the skin before becoming a light nice soapy smell.

The name Dark Obsession seems to be a misnomer because this fragrance is not dark - it's a light vibrant scent that is that too sweet to be dark.  And even though I'm not obsessed with the scent, if my girl digs it, and she gave it to me, I'd wear it to keep her obsession with me going.

She says:
The first scent that comes through are woody and green pines notes with just the just right level of aromatics zing that is refreshing to the nose. It seems to also be infused with a warm vanilla undertone that softens the sharpness and suggest a complexity and sophistication and softer side of this fragrance.

Normally, I'm not a fan of aromatic scents but the light sweetness here have made me changed my mind on aromatics. Once the intensity comes off,  Dark Obsession transform into a smooth blend of sensual smoky warm notes over a light sweet base that comes together harmoniously.

Dark Obsession promises exhibits a fine balance of masculinity and gentleness. Contrary to its name, it isn't a dark perfume as it is not heady or overpowering. The boldness and power isn't strong here but it is definitely sexy  with its smoky aromatics and I can see myself becoming obsessed with its wearer.

The official notes:
Top: brazilian green mandarin, guarana, absinthe
Mid: : french clary sage, fir balsam, white vetiver
Base:  madagascar vanilla bean, labdanum, suede
Family: aromatics oriental

Calvin Klein Dark Obsession for Men EDT - 75ml | 125ml  for  A$69 | A$99 at Myer, David Jones and selected pharmacies.

This featured product was provided for editorial consideration.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Winners: MUK Spa Argan Oil Repair Haircare

Despite the weekend being too short (as always) and it being Monday again, I hoped you've all had a great weekend. I spent mine catching up with friends I haven't seen in a while over good food and fabulous conversation.

I even managed to squeeze a day trip to Daylesford with some of those friends on Sunday for some hiking and photography. We love country towns for their relaxed atmosphere and friendly locals - for us, it's a temporary but welcomed escape from the craziness of the urban lifestyle we lead.

Whilst in Daylesford, we came across a table of beautiful floral arrangements and a bicycle leaning against a store front and I just couldn't resist going happy snappy and have a pretty photo to share below.

I hope you enjoyed that pretty bouquet of hydrangeas and orchids and it brightened up your Monday. Coming back to regular blogging business, I have some good news to start the week with - winners of the MUK Spa Haircare competition. Although I've already announced the winners on Facebook last Friday, I promised to also announced it on the blog. The lucky winners drawn last week are:
1. Uccie Chau Chau 
2. Mamta Garg 
3. Jenny Ma Chen

Congratulations to these lucky ladies who will have their amazing MUK haircare prizes sent to them in the coming week. I hope you enjoy your prizes and will share with us your thoughts on them in the near future on the MUK or Things I Love Facebook page.

This week will be a hectic one for me at work so blog posts might be short and infrequent. I still haven't had the chance to draw my birthday giveaway winners yet but will be doing so in the coming days so stay tuned for more winner announcements.

Till then, have a fab week!
x A