Saturday, October 23, 2010

Week 17 update

So this is supposedly when I should have maximum results. The pictures for this week don't flatter my lashes quite like the last update's did... it was a different angle, but the lashes are even longer (and I have more of them) than in the previous post. Here's a short update, but soon I will go all out and take lots of pics with good angles, so you can see. I'll also post before/after pics.

After 16 weeks (curled, with mascara, and penciled brows):

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Week 13 update

Check out how huge my lashes look already! This is after curling and mascara. Eyebrows are also penciled. Wowww!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Week 8 Update

It's been 8 1/2 weeks of using Careprost for eyelash treatment. And I must say.... my lashes are looking GOOD!
Longer, and slightly more lush. Take a look at some pictures. (BTW, I'm still using the first bottle).

Eye on the right is curled, left is not. No makeup.

Below: Mascara + curled, eyebrows penciled in.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Week 4 update

Hey all!
Been 4 weeks of using Careprost (Latisse generic) for eyelash treatment. Just wanted to update you on changes.

Side effects: nothing at all :)

Main effect: More of the same kind of thing from the last update, where I felt like I had more lashes of the same length. Well, there seems to be even more now, and that the longest lashes are getting longer. It's a very tiny difference, really only I notice it. However, my boyfriend has commented that my lashes look fuller (that I have more of them). Even if these were my maximum results with Careprost, I would still be impressed, especially since the stuff is only $10/bottle. I can't wait to see what the next few months will bring!  Here are some pix:

First photo: My right lashes are normal, my left ones are curled. No mascara. No brow filler.
Second photo: Same as first, top view.
Third photo: Curled w/ mascara, penciled brows

Monday, July 12, 2010

Week 2

It's been about 2 1/2 weeks since starting Careprost for eyelash treatment.

Side effects:
Impatience... that's about it, really. It's been a pretty uneventful two weeks. ;)

Main effect:
For about a week and a half I feel like I have had more "good lash" days. You know those days when you put on your mascara and it just seems like your eyelashes are doing exactly what you want them to do... Well it seems that maybe there has been less shedding or something, because I have longer-than-usual lashes closer to the inner corners of my eyes (where my lashes are usually the sparsest and shortest). So I've just had several consecutive good-lash days, but they're not noticeably longer or darker or thicker. Just seems like there are more of them.

(In pictures: Week 2- eyelashes are curled with a curler and have mascara)
That is all for now! :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

How do I get longer, natural eyelashes?

I've done quite a bit of research on this subject. Most of us interested in adding length and/or volume to our lashes might have heard of the product Latisse, which came out in early 2009, I believe. It's active ingredient (the one that makes the lashes grow) is bimataprost, which is used to treat glaucoma (and was discovered as having a very nice side effect on lash lushness). The cosmetic industry says we who long for lashes can get this FDA-approved version of the bimataprost specifically prescribed for eyelash use for ~$120 per bottle (Latisse). DO NOT GIVE IN AND BUY THIS. This is an absurd rip off. For the effect, it may seem worth it to some. However, you can buy the generic version of this product without a prescription for only $10 per bottle. 
The generic is called Careprost. It has the same amount of the same active ingredient bimatoprost in the same size bottle for over $100 less the cost. This amazing deal used to exist as Lumigan, but now they require a prescription for it (someone caught on that they were selling this glaucoma medication with out prescription). The pharmacy where you can buy it is online at "all day chemist [dot] com".
The bottles are $10 each (or $11 if you don't do good enough research), and shipping is a flat $25.
In addition to having maximum results around weeks 5-7, some ladies have experienced dry or itchy eyes and some shedding, however these occur in only some who use it, and usually they experience this unwanted side effects because they are applying too much or are getting it in their eyes.
Some have seen results in 2 weeks, and for some it has taken up to 5 or 6 to see anything change, however, the changes did come and Careprost has done wonderful things for these girls.
Some use two drops for both top eyelash lines and both eyebrows, however I think this is too much as you may experience itchy, dry eyes and your bottles running out faster than necessary. I think it is wise to put one drop on a plastic surface and apply it with a small-tipped piece of plastic (preventing waste in absorption from an eyeliner brush, for instance).
So, let me share with you my experience thus far, and I will continue to do updates on here to share my progress.  Enjoy :)
I placed an order through the aforementioned website on Wednesday, June 16. I ordered 8 bottles of Careprost for about $105. I received an email confirming my purchase, and another email on Friday the 18th that my order had shipped. I signed for the package at my doorstep on Thursday, June 23 (that was fast!). It came with my 8 boxes, and they included some eyeliner brushes, and my order confirmation.
I apply the product once a day (usually at night, but I don't think it matters). I squeeze out most of a drop (before it actually falls), and spread that onto a piece of plastic I have. Then I use the end of a bobby pin (non-permeable plastic surface that's small enough) to apply the product. I get as close to the root of my eyelash hairs as I can without getting it into my eye, and I use just enough to really moisten the lash line. I always have plenty left over, so I put that where I want fuller eyebrows. The bobby pin doesn't pick up ALL the liquid, so I use my fingertip after it starts getting really low, and just wipe across my whole brows. Nothing wasted! And I don't even use a full drop. :)
Progress: These are my "before" pictures. My right brow is comparatively sparse, as you can see in the makeup-less first picture. The right lashes are curled with a eyelash curler, the left eyelashes are just normal. Not remarkable in any way. In the second photo, I curled and put mascara on both lashes and filled in my brows somewhat with a pencil. Sorry for the crappy resolution. My digital camera's brokened. ='(
It's been 5 days of using this product (the sixth time will be tonight). I don't expect any results in the next week or two really, because I know that people really start noticing a difference around the 4th week or so.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Dream Story

The day I quit my job was the day my life ended. My job was my life. It took up most, if not all of my free time. I could've pretty much considered myself a slave, but my title was a live-in assistant. A wealthy businessman named Mr. Ryan Smith, who probably got that way because he was a total workaholic, worked long hours and when he got home to his mansion and family, he needed my help working some more. He didn't leave to work everyday like most people do, he often worked from home. Those were my busiest, most hectic days. "Lia! I need you to pick up my dry cleaning at Royal's, and put it where I will find it tomorrow. The jet leaves with us on it at 9 o'clock sharp. Do you understand?"
"Yes, of course Mr. Smith. Right away," my almost robotic reply was programmed muscle memory in my vocal system. I never really needed to say anything more to him. My job was to make his life easy and I loved it; too much frill of conversation would've probably gotten me fired, which would end us all.
I turned hastily to leave the home office to see if I could make it without likely earshot of him putting in another demand, but I failed again. It's still fun to try to beat my previous record number of steps out the door. And I loved hoping for the little rush of glee I got when he called for me, ever hoping it's to tell me I'm lovely or that he loves me.
"Lia, another thing." I turned on my heels, not moving my position. "Get me a bunch of those organic protein bars, you remember those?"
I knew it. A cross-town journey. I hated going alone. I felt like I'd get mugged if I stopped too long at a red light. Or maybe I was just used to the security Mr. Smith can afford to protect his huge property with in our quiet, suburban neighborhood. Anyway, I would do it happily without hesitation, of course. I breathed in until my chest was tight and sighed with a slight chuckle, "Yes, Mr. Smith." I walked slowly out, but peeked back inside at him as I turned the corner. He was still looking at me, but with a little smile. I skipped until I made it without earshot. I won.
Errands run, grocery bag full of Mr. Smith's favorite protein bars and a bag of expensive suits fresh from the cleaners in hand, I had not been mugged or killed. I dropped off the bars on the marble kitchen counter and headed towards Mr. Smith's room to put away his suits. If I could do it without getting another request, it was another victory. Just as I had been hoping for success of my seeming simple task, the two-way doors forced their way open, nearly taking me out. I slammed against the wall, out of the way. Mr. Smith's son, Will, ran full speed through the door, clutching a book, his face displaying utter terror. He bolted right past me and around the kitchen island. Before I had time to ask myself, Mr. Smith's daughter, Olivia, with the expression of murderous rage, burst through the doors the same way her younger brother had, but brought a completely different feeling through. As she bolted by me, I saw her quickly look at me from the corner of her eye. Ahh, acknowledgement. I knew she couldn't ignore me forever. She's just like her mother; greedy and self-centered, insulted by being in the same room with the help. Her eyes darted back to her brother and her body followed, bringing the rage with it. I had not been harmed in this event, but more importantly, neither did Mr. Smith's suits.
Without further incident, I made my way up to Mr. and Mrs. Smith's ginormous bedroom suite which was more of an apartment within the mansion. Knocking first, with no reply, I entered through the sliding double doors. I hung the suits on the hanger on the closet door. I picked up a few clothes strewn on the floor and bed and put them on top of the over-flowing hamper. I tried mushing it down, but it was so crammed from previous mushings, I gave up and decided today would have to be laundry day. I towed the hamper behind me but stopped to open the curtains and let in some mid-day light. The view of the lower parts of the mansion shown through. I gazed at the marvelous aesthetics of the shapes of the building with the wide, blue sky behind it and the grassy hills.
Slam! I tore my eyes and my heart from the beautiful picture and looked to see the sliding door had been shut (quite loudly) and Mr. Smith stomping to his bed, furiously attempting to undo the buttons on his white collar shirt. He was mad. I did not want to be shut in here much less within a five mile radius of an angry Mr. Smith.
He cursed under his breath as he sat down on his bed, removing his shoes, apparently he'd given up on the buttons. Mr. Smith was not often angry, but when he was it was very frightening. I tend to avoid hostility as much as possible, but there was no escape from this. Perhaps if I stood still enough, he wouldn't see me. He was all too keen of his environment, however; he would eventually notice me. So I decided to make the first move.
"Mr. Smith?" I squeaked out in a controlled, soft tone.
He jumped, startled. He looked over to where the noise came from, his expression still fiery.
"I need you to get me a new phone tomorrow. Not the same one. I didn't like that one anyway," he barked. I wanted so badly to ask, but I did not want to risk turning his anger towards me. I didn't say anything. I picked up the hamper, and ambled slowly over towards the doors. I stopped and turned around. Standing, waiting. I don't know why. But I made my expression soft and consoling, so he couldn't get angrier by looking at me. Maybe. But his head was in his hands, and he wasn't looking.
My feet carried me over to the bed, and made me turn and sit by him. The stress radiated off him, but I hated it touching me. Maybe it was safe to just put my hand on his shoulder. I did so, without reaction. I had never touched him before really. I was secretly glad for this upset, because it gave me an excuse.
Then I could feel him sobbing. And the waves of stress turned into waves of deep, sickening sadness. I knew it was okay to help now. I put my arms around his shoulders and held him while he sobbed quietly. His face, I could see, was wet and it felt hot with his hands on his forehead. I wished he would just tell me what the matter was; he would tell me when he's ready. I tried to think of what could be wrong that would make him react this way. Mr. Smith was not really a crier, to my knowledge. Is the business sinking? Maybe his money is gone? Did someone hurt his feelings? I knew Mrs. Smith hadn't been home a lot lately, maybe...
I held him tighter.
After some time, the sobbing slowed, then stopped. He wiped his face in his shirt and sat up. It was okay to let go. He smiled slightly at me, though red-faced and slightly swollen from crying. He got up and went to the sink to clean up, leaving me on the bed, hoping. The double doors slid open with a little difficulty, for Olivia came through, and she was nearly twelve and worn out from chasing her brother.
"Daddy! Will stole my diary from my room and won't give it back!" she huffed loudly.
Concerned for his feelings, I stood up and went towards her, mouthing, "Not now!", trying to get her out of the room, to her great shock and disapproval.
"No!" she yelled, "Daddy! Tell him to give it --" she trailed off at the sight of her father, who had just turned the corner to see her. She did not expect him to look so weary and I could tell she immediately took notice and changed her tone. "What happened?" she had the inherent right to intrude.
"Where is he? Where's Will?" he stalled, in a quiet tone. "Go get him, will you please?" The vindictive smile I had normally expected was nowhere in sight; she turned cautiously and went out the door.
As soon as her hustled footsteps were cleared, Mr. Smith spoke.
"Lia?" I looked up at him with concern. "I don't know how to tell them...I -- I don't know..." he trailed off, hopeless. A strange, noisy sound rang out; my phone was ringing. Mrs. Smith's ringtone. I pulled out my phone to make double sure, and indeed, it flashed "Mrs. Smith calling" across the screen. I looked up to get Mr. Smith's approval to answer but he had already made his way, furious again, towards me, and he yanked my phone away and opened it to answer.
"Lia is my employee. You are forbidden to call her or ask anything of her, do you understand? We are not to hear from you again," he slammed my phone shut and threw it hard at the wall behind me. I heard it break into pieces and fall onto the dresser and behind it, onto the floor. Ahh, the answer to the new phone question, I chuckled to myself. He interrupted my immature moment, "She won't be coming back. You are not to let her in the house. You are not to take orders from her, understand?"
"Yes, Mr. Smith." I spoke humbly.
"I don't understand what I did, it truly makes no sense to me. Yet, she has robbed me of my heart, my happiness,... my assets. Not much, of course, I never shared everything with her. But my heart, I gave her all of my heart." Mr. Smith was indeed a generous and loving man, once you got past the straight-forward, all-business, commander version of him. Mrs. Smith loved her embellished life, maybe too much. I think she didn't want to be weighed down by her family anymore. That was my guess, anyways. I wondered what would happen now, whether Mr. Smith would need me to work harder, whether he would need me at all, what will happen to the kids, etc. I wish this hadn't happened. I wish things could've stayed the same, but deep down inside I felt that everything had built up to this moment.
The next morning, Mr. Smith left on his jet at 9 o'clock sharp for his conference, despite the life-changing drama he was now drowning in. He decided to take his kids with him. They were extremely upset at yesterday's events, and decided it was best to stick together but also get out of the house for a while.
I had a few weeks in the house to myself which I spent cleaning and tidying up. I decided to take it upon myself to clean out Mrs. Smith's things that she left behind. She had packed most of her things, apparently, but left some old clothes and shoes, some jewelry she didn't like, and beauty items. I kept a pair of shoes that I happened to be fond of, although her feet were a size bigger than mine. The rest I put into plastic bags and carried up to the attic. If Mr. Smith ever decided he didn't want them gone, I could fetch them, but I wouldn't throw them out unless he was okay with it. I guess I would find out when he returned. I also rearranged some of the furniture in the house, to give it a little different feel; they left behind years of built-up emptiness and pain, they would not come back to it.
The house was too quiet for too long now. Especially at night. I went through and turned off all the lights every night, but by the end of the third week alone, it was getting uncomfortably creepy. I had scared myself into staying up later than usual but eventually fell asleep.
I was awoken by a text from Mr. Smith. "Landing this afternoon, Lia. Pls be home." ~Ryan Smith" My rigorous agenda would recommence this afternoon, I thought. Party over, I smiled to myself. But I wasn't smiling for dread of work as much as I was smiling at the thought of seeing Mr. Smith again.
I went out and bought some welcome home decorations just to brighten the place up for the family's arrival. I made sure everything was straightened and there was not a speck of dust anywhere, the house was at a comfortable temperature, there was plenty of food and drink in the fridge, and the decorations were straight. Then I went back to my room, and took some extra time to make myself look pleasing instead of peasant-y. I curled my hair, put on some make-up and a little nicer outfit. I didn't want to be over-the-top or too attention-seeking. Just nice, to make the house look nicer -- and maybe to please Mr. Smith. A little.
I sat myself in the family room, near the door, so that I would be ready to welcome them when they arrived. I read a book, a harmless (and clean) activity, to occupy myself. Expectedly, although it still startled me, keys were knocking on the metal of the lock of the door, and the bolts were undone. I quickly put my book down, stood up, straightened my clothes, and put on a pleasant face.
Mr. Smith came in, luggage in tow, followed by Will and Olivia laughing, and their luggage. They had all looked around and seemed to enjoy the decorations I put up; they were even smiling.
"Welcome home!" I exclaimed with a big smile. Everyone kind of just stared at me; it was a little awkward. Mr. Smith smiled back, "This is nice." It made me elated that I pleased him. Will and Olivia had been laughing about something before, so they continued their funny conversation, running up to their rooms, leaving their luggage behind for me to take care of.
I sighed. "How was the conference?" I asked as if business was a language I understood, but certainly not wanting to address the obvious.
"Good," he replied automatically. "I needed to get away and think. Took the kids to the amusement park a few times, saw some shows. They made friends with other kids at the conference, so they weren't completely bored there."
"I'm glad," I answered contently. I went towards the luggage to resume my duties, but he stepped over and blocked me. Taking my arms in his hands, he smiled a soft smile and spoke in a light voice: "Thank you for what you've done."
I blinked. "What do you mean?"
"I mean the decorations and being there when I tell you to, but mostly being there when I need you to. You do a lot for me and my family, it has not gone unnoticed."
"Well of course, Mr. Smith, it's my job," I justified.
"Do you know what I've been thinking about these past few weeks?" Obviously not, I lost my mind-reading powers when I was a child from lack of use. "I've been thinking about my priorities. What was happening in my relationship with Nadine was just complete dissolving. I mean, I know I tried to be around more lately, I even got a home office just for that. I took time off to be with her and the kids. I could have done more, though, I could have given her more attention, more love, but it wouldn't have meant anything to her. She just wanted things. There was nothing I could've done but let her do what she did," he explained. His face and voice had a tone of sadness in it, but it seemed that it was more from pity than brokenness. It was relieving to me; maybe things weren't going to change that much after all.
"Also, I've realized that what I've always needed has been right there with me through it all," he looked at me hinting, but I fought it with denial. He could NOT be saying what I was thinking, and secretly hoping, he was saying. I felt blood rush to my head; it was getting warmer, maybe I need to fix the thermostat.
"Umm, I don't really know what you're --"
"Lia," he interrupted my mumbling, "I've been thinking about you and what you mean to me. You're not just my assistant, you're more than that. Your sweetness, your thoughtfulness, your silly antics...just thinking about you has gotten me through the past three weeks." My stomach felt like it was trying to escape my body, and my heart seemed to shoot up into my throat. Even if I had wanted to, speaking of any kind was not going to happen. He broke the day-long silence, "So I thank you, Lia."
I sighed. Almost a year of commands and demands have finally resulted in this gratitude. But was this just gratitude? He left me thank-you notes in obscure places like the lint collector in the clothes dryer, and allowed me a whole week of luxury for my birthday, taking me out to eat and pretty much do whatever I wanted. He was my best friend. Was he trying to say more? Still holding my arms, he pulled me closer and leant his face to mine and continued in a whisper, "and I love you," sealing it with a kiss I could not resist, though my mind raced and I was still in denial that it was all happening. All his love for me was felt in that kiss, there was no thinking against it. I let my mind go, and let myself kiss him back. That was the day I quit my job. My job was my life. My life, as I knew it, is over.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Dear computer friends,
I'm at the airport. Security checkpoint was the horrendous, chaotic hassle I always anticipate it will be. The worst is over now. All there is to do is to be at my gate -- I can see it from here -- when they start boarding and make sure I stuff my crap into two carry-on bags. There's not much juice in my laptop and I'm too lazy to find a place to plug it in, so I'm not going to bother with that. I'll let it die when it's time comes, then probably continue reading Twilight. The last half of the book is not my favorite, but I can't start something without finishing it and still feel like an accomplished person. I'm weird like that.
I should be more excited than I am about going to Utah today for the next five or six days. Probably because my excitement has had a pall of pain has been cast over the day. It'll work itself out in time.
I smell greasy fast food and it makes my stomach turn, but I am hungry and it's either fast food or convenient store food. Ugh. I hate airports.

Sunday, January 24, 2010


I was just watching Tuck Everlasting and it got me thinking. I like movies that get me thinking. I've had a couple of scary death dreams lately. One in particular involved me being diagnosed with a terminal disease and I could die at any minute. I was still young, I had love, I wasn't ready to die. I was scared to fall asleep in that I might not wake up. I was scared of what I would find on the other side, if anything. What happened to all those people who lived before me? Tuck says something like don't be afraid of death, death -- like birth-- is a part of the wheel. Be afraid of not living a full life." We often forget the existence of a definite uncertainty: that we never know when our time on earth will end. It could be tomorrow, hit by a drunk driver. It could be in a few days, or in a few months, or a mere few years away. It could be further down the road. Whenever it is, we will never know. It is not for us to decide. God has us here for a reason, and he will relieve us of this burden of earth life when that reason is fulfilled. For some, such as a fetus, the only reason is to gain a body, and in the case of the fetus, perhaps teach an important lesson to his/her family. Everything you do affects everyone around you, and everyone who will come after you in some way. Life on earth is short. In a few years, I will start getting wrinkles and more gray hairs. A few years later, I will have loose skin and frail bones and probably be taking 16 different medications a day just to keep breathing. That's when it gets really scary... death is knocking at the door; it will come inevitably soon. How do older people deal with this fact? When I look at the faces of my family and those I love, I try to capture that image in my mind, because I know it won't be like that for very long. I know that one after the other, I will lose the people I love around me. I wonder how anyone can bear that!? The world is not the same when the people you love and once knew are no longer in it. I don't want to live in that world. The songs like Live Like You Were Dying send good messages about life... we can't control when we go, so it's best to take care of our business while we can, as best we can. Love deeper, speak sweeter, give forgiveness we've been denying... someday I hope I get the chance to live like that... I think someday can be today.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Shopping Bug

Things could always be worse. In fact, things could look like this:

But I am quite grateful that they do not. This was in Provo last year. I miss only a little of it, but I will NOT complain that the high in Mesa has been around 70 degrees Farenheit so far this January. Why am I talking about weather... that's boring.

Next, I shall venture into a discussion of what's new with me. So here goes. Last week I spent 40 hours in training for a job with no guaranteed hours (yay!) and had a job interview for a position with no guaranteed hours (yay! x wowwww!) and my application to ASU is due by the end of the week (yay! x joyness!). I am finally over that 2.5 week-long cough (yay! - sarcasm). I want a new cell phone. I want to learn to play the guitar and I want to record. I want to live in the book "Twilight" (stake me) and I want to fit in petite clothing again (yes, I did once upon a time). Some of these things are possible. Is it just me, or do you tend to want more when you know you can't have more? Stupid economy...
I don't like giving a wishlist to people for Christmas because then there are expectations, and nobody wants expectations for Christmas. But really, I should wise up and let people know, otherwise I get a lot of stuff I wouldn't have asked for. Not that I'm complaining about any of it... just that there are things I want more. Last night, I dreamt about shopping -- because I can't do it. I almost bought this purse that had "mood"/temperature detection capabilities, so it was always changing color on me. I thought it was just going to stay purple, but it didn't, so I put it back. Maybe I can go to D.I. and get myself one thing. I need a light coat that I can wear with any style of outfit in mild weather. Maybe I will do that today. I like having something new that I want. Is it materialistic of me? Absolutely. It's an improvement in quality of life. It can make you feel good, but it doesn't last, and it's EXTREMELY shallow. But a girl's gotta have clothes!
Ok, I'm going to do something productive now. Have a nice day. :)