Atomic Lollipop 2013

Hey guys! I’m so excited to share with you guys all the photographs, crafts, art and other cool stuff I grabbed at Atomic Lollipop… Pictures speak a lot louder than words…

In only its third year running, Atomic Lollipop is one of the smaller conventions in Toronto but because it’s so local, it has a much warmer atmosphere where you actually get to interact with other con-goers, cosplayers, artists and panelists instead of shuffling awkwardly through crowds of people and screaming over the noise to look for your friends (LOL) The convention takes place at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre and in addition to the Dealer’s Room, Artist Alley, Gamer’s Room and Manga Libary, there’s also a mini carnival space outside which give this summer con a fun new aspect.

Panels I Went to… 8-Bit Accessories, Scott Yaphe (Host of Uh Oh) Q&A, A+ Anime Essentials, Button-Making, Cosplay Cat Walk, Ramen Eating Contest, Atomic Noodle House, So You Think You Can K-Pop, Posing for Cosplay Photography (even though I’m a photographer), Really Bad Anime, Fat Stacks Pancakes, How to Vocaloid, Voice Acting 101, and Speed-Friending Sword Art Online.

Day 1- Friday, Aug 2

Day 2 and 3- Saturday, Aug 3 & Sunday, Aug 4

Other than the panels and activities, one of the most memorable highlights was meeting all the artists, designers and crafters in the Artist Alley. The thing I love about handmade accessories and jewelry is that each and every one is unique and the designs are much more detailed and intricate than seasonal fashion accessories you would find at retail stores. I also love collecting buttons, it’s a little piece of the artist’s work on a super cute pin that you can wear on your clothes, your bag, or even your Converse shoes 😉 As well, I got to meet a lot of cool people so thank you very much for taking some time out of your day to chat with me, it was a pleasure to meet such talented and amazing people!

DSC_0004b

Atomic Lollipop Haul

For everyone who went to Atomic Lollipop, thank you all for making the experience so fun. Below are some photographs that my dad grabbed this weekend. Most of them are of the Cosplay Catwalk so if you were there for that, I hope you find your picture!

I hope you had as much fun as I did this weekend. I met some really awesome con-goers! Comment below on your favourite panel or the highlight of your weekend. The next con I will be heading to is FanExpo Canada at the end of the month!! I can hardly wait! Remember to share this post so that all your friends can find their photos! Thank you guys so much for dropping in and regular reviews will be back up soon. As always, new posts are coming every day!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Okonomiyaki in Akihabara

DSC_0817Two years ago when I went to Japan with my parents, we were walking around Ikebukuro and we couldn’t find any place to eat. We stumbled upon a cute little local okonomiyaki restaurant… we didn’t even know what okonomiyaki was! We knew no Japanese and the waiters, waitresses and manager did not know any English. With some random stirring and a lot of staring at the table next to us, we figured it out!

Of course, when we went to Japan this time we had to hit up a big okonomiyaki restaurant with ALL the works! If you’re at Akihabara and you cross under the tunnel adjacent to the station, there’s a tall building with several floors, one of which is dedicated to food. There are a variety of restaurants but I had my heart set on okonomiyaki.

DSC_0863For those of you have never heard of okonomiyaki. Okonomiyak is a sort of Japanese pancake consisting of a selection of meats and vegetables. Okonomi means “what you like” and yaki means “cooked.” Basically, you start off with a batter consisting of egg and yam, you can choose what you’d like to have in it before mixing it all together and throwing it onto the grill. You can also have okonomiyaki with yakisoba (fried noodles) mixed into it; recipes and ingredients will vary depending on where you are.

DSC_0797

I did prior research to my trip and Fugetsu had many positive remarks. I’m glad to say that they didn’t disappoint. For first time okonomiyaki eaters, Fugetsu is a really great restaurant to start because there are English menus, the staff know limited English and a waiter actually makes the okonomiyaki for you as you watch and take photos with your little tourist-chic camera. The service is probably one of the best parts of the dining experience. There’s always someone checking up on you and your food to make sure it’s cooking properly. As well, there’s a button to call for service as the restaurant gets pretty loud and rowdy.

The few desserts they offer are also super tasty and cute. We had frozen cream-filled strawberries and mini chocolate truffle cakes.

DSC_0886 DSC_0882

If you’re in Electric Town Akihabara and you’ve shopped till the late hours, Fugetsu is a great place for some fun Japanese cuisine!

Thank you guys for reading and bon appetite!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Apple and Honey Mask

honey_2110575Hi everyone! And welcome to another segment of Light Otaku Living! Since summer is heating up fast, I thought I’d share with you this mask!

I burn really easily in the sun and I heard that this mask would help reduce redness and retain moisture. I would say yes and no, or maybe it just doesn’t work that well for me. This masks works decently and it’s simple enough to make. The ingredients include 1 apple and 2 tablespoons of honey. All you do is mash up the apples, add your honey, mix and apply to the skin.

What I loved… Honey!!  It is literally one of the best ingredients to have in DIY masks

The Texture- The mash of apples plus the super smoothness of the honey is the perfect mix

My face does feel softer, smoother and thoroughly cleansed minutes after the mask is rinsed off. Great for people who have dry skin like me!

apples-red

The Hassles… Apples are difficult to chop and mash especially if you don’t have a blender or food processor. I would advise you not to attempt unless you have a food processor because it took me a good twenty minutes to manually puree the apples… I also have an aversion to peeling apples (though I really don’t like eating apples with peel)

During the process- Gravity + apple puree on face = disaster. My sink was a mess.

Avoid the eyes!

Ouran_High_School_Host__Honey_by_evilchuHalf and Half…I don’t think the apples worked as well as I was told they would but the honey was the saving grace in this messy recipe. However, I would say that the apples lightened my dark circles and I looked a few shades more refreshed. I don’t see absolutely glowing skin but since apples have antioxidant and exfoliating capabilities, your face will be absorbing vitamins A, B and C.

Rating: 2.5/5 happy clouds 25 Clouds Transparent

This DIY mask would have made three stars if it wasn’t for the massive clean-up mission that followed the application of the mask. Personally I prefer a mask with cooling sensations and glowing skin aftermath. The process of making and applying the mask was an endeavour on its own.

I hope you guys liked this quickie DIY mask review. I was planning on using this mask in Hong Kong because it helps sunburns but I think I might have to find something quicker and easier to use! I hope you guys liked quickie rant and review! Thank you so much for reading!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

 

Being a Healthy Otaku

otakuI have a lot of friends who like to power through anime or manga series in one sitting. They often forget about taking care of their bodies, especially the ones who like to finish visual novels in one sitting or trying to juggle League of Legends or World of Warcraft with work, every day errands, extracurricular activities and school work. During exams this year, when I advised one of my university friends to perhaps shift a bit of time off his visual novel gaming to his studies, he told me he’s willing to forgo sleep to keep up both his visual novel story and  his exam studies… Both are of the same weighted importance of course.

1024-by-768-1966-20060821003913

I also have a friend back home who stays up till four in the morning both working and anime-watching at the same time… It was a bad idea to introduce Ouran to him (LOL).  When I attend anime or hobbyist conventions, I see people camping out in their cars with nothing more than three bags of chips and a bottle of 2L pop.

There is just not enough time to watch anime AND do everything you’re expected to do on a regular basis and with the flurry of weekday and the short 48 hours of the weekend, our health often falls second – no, last, to our To-Do list. So today I’m going to share with you guys a few of my healthy living tips as an anime series follower and avid manga series reader.

1)      Making the Snackies Healthier

Kyōko-Eating-Chips-Puella-Magi-Madoka-Magica
482922-healthy-breakfast-of-yogurt-and-berriesJust because Kyoko is munching on a new snack every time the scene changes doesn’t mean you have to! But you’re probably wondering, “What else am I going to do while I watch anime?” Snacking is a big thing for late night anime watchers and speaking from personal experience, I know how quickly chocolate bars and chip bags run out when you’re at an intense part of the story. However, we end up ingesting a lot of sugar and a lot of sodium with all the junk food snackies. Instead of giant bags of chips and a box of cookies, go for fruit and yogurt or some veggies and dip. Personally, I love snacking on blueberries when I watch anime. I guarantee the slight change in diet will make a difference to your physique and overall energy levels.

e9UOW2)      Everything in Moderation

If you’re really craving junk food, have snacks in portions. Don’t rip the entire bag open with your teeth like an animal! (or starving Otaku), pour a fixed amount in a bowl and leave it at that. Trust me; your lazy self won’t want to get up for more chips while you’re fixed on the anime. And if you really need to eat at night cause you’re going for an all-night with a visual novel, go for smaller portions of snacks or liquids like tea or chocolate milk. You DO NOT need caffeine at three in the morning.

3)      Get Up and Stretch

tumblr_m8swj9wAt51qbjtqb Nine out of ten people who are streaming or watching a downloaded anime will shave off the opening and ending songs. I’m here to tell you not to do that! Well… I do it too, because I GOTS TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!

imagesBut I’ve found that the best thing to do while the opening songs or closing credits are playing is to get up and move about. Sitting at your desk or lying in bed or on a couch for too long can cause back pain or muscle fatigue. Also, those of you who have a tendency to contort into strange positions on your chair while anime watching know that numb legs are not fun.

A simple stretch will do. Move your arms about, roll those shoulders, shake out those legs! Touch your toes… if you can. If you want, get up and dance to the closing song! (Especially if you’re watching The Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi.)

Haruhi_dance

4)      Go Outside

295345_552436541475590_1384373968_nWhile we’re on the topic of stretching, it’s nice to go outside once in a while… you know, see the sun. You’ll hiss and screech for a few seconds while your eyes and your skin gets used to the light. Download and take your favourite anime soundtracks with you while you take a walk or go for a jog! Everyone needs a bit of exercise once in a while. With the weather getting warmer and warmer, it’s perfect to take Ho-kagoTea Time or the Vocaloids with you while you’re riding your bike, rollerblading or just taking a stroll through the park.

cleaning

5)      Clean up your Collection

If you’re like me and have numerous manga series, anime DVD’s and a ton of otaku merchandise, you’ll know what a big endeavour it is to reorganize your collection. For some reason, we tend to stop everything in our lives to follow an anime or manga series. But no more! This is the time to get out of your seat, dust those figurines, shelve those manga and throw out that packaging you tossed in the corner from last month’s purchase! Reorganizing your anime and manga collections will give your room a new look and that lemony smell of cleaning supplies will drive out all the leftover scents of instant noodles! Chores are actually a great way to move about, burn some of those calories and give your muscles a workout. Compile your favourite anime music, crank it up and CLEAN!

6)      Cosplay

376895

Need some motivation? Think of that your cosplay costume that you’ll be wearing for the next hot con! Cutting down your intake of sugar and sodium plus a little exercise will have you look super kawaii or BADASS for that upcoming convention. I’m not saying that you have to be stick-skinny like the CLAMP characters cause that’s not physically possible, but being healthier will not only make you look good but FEEL GOOD too with extra stamina for long and demanding conventions.

BONUS! Beauty Tip for the Girls

Sheet masks and DIY homemade masks are the best to have one while you’re watching anime. It only takes a few minutes to mix together an organic honey and lemon mask or peel open a package for a cleansing sheet mask. In whatever season and weather, our skin is always under the pressures of our stress and environment and we don’t always have time to pamper ourselves so why not treat yourself to a nourishing beauty mask while you’re relaxing with your favourite anime series. (If you’re interested in DIY masks, stay tuned for future posts!)

4230682310_756f753cf4_o

I hope you guys found this post at least a little useful. I’m very excited to have this Light Living Otaku section up. If you guys enjoyed this, feel free to like or follow for new stuff daily! Thank you so much for reading!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?