My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia is a cute show. I’ve been watching since is started on VRV earlier this year. In all honesty, I didn’t want to watch it at first as it seemed kind of dumb, but  the Mr. convinced me that I should give it a try. I was hooked after one episode. Here is the synopsis from Funimation:

In a world where eighty percent of the population has some kind of super-powered “quirk,” Izuku was unlucky enough to be born completely normal. But that won’t stop him from enrolling in a prestigious hero academy. Now, the promising freshman class is making its debut at the world-renowned U.A. Sports Festival! It’s Quirk versus Quirk as our young heroes face off in the ultimate showdown.

The main character’s devotion to Quirks, even though he’s totally normal, is pretty amazing.

Izuku Midoria, the main character

post work out goofy face

Jillian Michaels is My Hero

I’ve talked before about how working out is now a part of my daily life. Jillian Micheals is part of the reason why.  I normally don’t like the ladies who feature in work out DVDs, in general they focus too much on saying things like “you can do it, just keep pushing” and being overly cheery. That does not motivate me….

You probably know her from the Biggest Loser but I had barely heard of her before I bought the DVDs. I react positively to her tough love style but what I like about Jillian Michaels is that she encourages you to focus on WHY you are doing these exercises and how it will make you look and feel AFTER you’ve sweat yourself to the edge of collapse.  She also offers options in the work out to lessen the impact or stress on your body (if you need to), which was really helpful for me when I started.

I find her so much more inspiring that most women – I’ve read a couple of interviews with her and she seems to be really blunt, which I like, but also cares about people too.

It’s not about perfect, it’s about effort.

I’ve done both the beginner shred and the killer body videos. Check them out for a change in your routine, or get a routine if you don’t have one already.

MAC shadow palette

MAC Attack! I fixed my make up

One of the many things I’ve done to get things back to normal is sort my skin care and make up regimen. Skin care I’ll talk about later, I wanted to talk about my insanely awesome experience with MAC cosmetics.

Before I got sick, I was in rut. I had barely changed my make up since I moved to California (or maybe even before that). Super Boring!! You can see one of my last photos from before my illness in other places on this site.

So a few months ago, I decided to go all out and do a complete update. I’ve used some MAC products before (powder, eyeliner and mascara) but never had a full make over.

WOW! It was a GREAT experience and I HIGHLY recommend it!

I scheduled an appointment at a location with a private room for the makeup lessons (because I knew I’d need to take my wig off). I specifically requested that they do a “how to” so I could refresh my look with, not only new colors but techniques as well. The lady I worked with at the Beverly Hills location was AMAZING! (shout out to Koah!)

The whole thing was a big ding on my pocket book but I planned ahead, knowing that if I was going to update my whole look, I was going to spend a lot.

The appointment itself cost $90 for a 90 minute lesson. I had the “MAKEUP LESSON IN 90 MINUTES” session but I ended up there for over 2 hours, my make up artist and I were having so much fun and I booked at the end of the day.

You get a discount on the products you buy after the session so…

A post shared by malinda (@malindahlloyd) on

Yeah – I kinda went a little nuts.

Here I am post make over, in a “night” look:

Final Night Look
Image (c) L.M.Lloyd

aside from the base make up products, I splurged on a whole new set of eye shadow colors:

MAC shadow palette

The top center color is more black, and less purple, in real life. The shades are so pretty in person. The bottom row gets a major workout for my “work” look and after a few months, the bottom right is pretty close to being used up, since it’s the primary color I use.

My make up lesson was so thorough that the next day, I had no trouble getting my make up done. It took some time because I wasn’t used to the techniques, but I’ve whittled that time down significantly in the last few months.  Check it out:

first attempt at MAC technique

Have you ever tried their classes?

 

 

 

 

So much has happened…

what a differennce a year makes

Moofia! Tokidoki + Fred 62

Breakfast this weekend turned from trying a new place to happy, happy land when we arrived at Fred 62. They were overtaken by Tokidoki!! The food was really great but the service a little slow. We will definitely be going back for munching later, though.

It was a very Japanese style pop up restaurant with a Tokidoki set menu and swag for purchase.

I got a blind box toy and a t-shirt. Let’s just say, “breakfast was extra pricey today.” The t-shirt was $20 and the blind box toy, $8.

I also got a Fred 62 + Tokodoki sticker

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shiny chariot magic festa poster

Little Witch Academia

I took a little bit of a hiatus from anime after my last trip to Japan in 2015 so I’m a little behind on series. I’ve slowly been catching up with the help of VRV and Netlix.

I really enjoyed Little Witch Academia on Netflix. It’s really sweet story of a girl coming into her own at school. Granted – the school is a little unusual and it is definitely an adventure for our main character, Akko. She wants to be a witch that makes people happy just like her hero, Shiny Chariot.

akko as a teen and as a kid in witch outfit

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Instagram Hates VPN, Except When It Doesn’t

I have two Instagram accounts that I use to experiment with content and their algorithms. I started running a VPN on my phone after some of the big data breaches as an added layer of security for myself.

With the app update on September 18, 2017, I began to see errors when I tried to like images in one account. I thought it was a fluke, since I could like pictures in one of the two accounts. But after further testing, it became clear that the error pertains to a specific account and only when I have VPN turned on.

It is very interesting to me that one account has the error but my other account does not. I’m using one app on my phone where I’m logged in to both accounts.

I didn’t receive a notification that my account was dinged for any reason, just this pop up after liking a photo:

I submitted a support comment and the issue cleared for a day or two but the pop up showed up again pretty quickly. I’ve complained on Twitter, Facebook, and even Instagram itself to no avail.

Do bots use VPN? Is that why I’m being blocked?

First world problem for sure, but when part of what you do for a living is social media – it makes a difference.

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Green Cat

Learning to Airbrush

My husband and I embarked upon a project to learn how to collaborate creatively. We started building and painting a large scale model of the Neo Zeong from one of the Gundam TV series. I hopped right in and started painting – I’ve been sharing pics along the way on Instagram. With my new found skills and some nudging from the Mr., I decided to take on a smaller scale project. I ran across this guy while at the Dick Blick art supply store near us:

I’m not a huge fan of this particular green and almost didn’t buy it. As I was humming and hawing over the purchase, Husband leaned over and said, “you could paint it.” And lightbulbs went off… I have a TON of pink airbrushable paint from a project I never finished. So, once we got it home it was a matter of figuring out the material which proved to be quite easy. At first, we thought it was polystone but nope! The cat is plastic! Once we figured out the composition, there are a ton of ways to peel the paint. Husband has some paint stripper for clearing off plastic car parts, which worked like a charm. Bubbling off the paint:

After one coat:

The paint stripped off nicely after a few coats of stripper and I was able to primer the kitty with some Mr. Surfacer.

The airbrush took about 5 refills to get the cat covered but it’s nicely coated.

I put in a few more details with a Gundam Marker to make the M pop.

Tellogen Effluvium or How I Discovered the Fun of Wigs

Not sure what Tellogen Efluvium is? Hair loss – it’s a more medical term for your hair coming out after a significant shock to your system. It’s one side effect of a long term ICU stay AND s side effect of one of the life saving treatments I was on at Cedars-Sinai. You can guess from the title of this post that T.E. happened to me….

I know all the guys suffering from male pattern baldness are saying, “boo hoo to you.” but I had no idea what to expect.

I have A LOT of hair – it’s really fine by the strand but dense across my scalp. When I was in the hospital earlier this year, my hair was put up in a bun on my head and that bun didn’t come out for months. I had a big dread lock on top of my head by the time I was awake and aware of what was going on. I initially thought the hair falling out was a minor adjustment but I realized it wasn’t as the steady stream of strands came off my head. I lost more than half of my hair in the span of a month or two.

Below is the worst of the bald spots:

Before heading back to work full time, I had to decide – rock the “see through to my scalp” hair or give my head some cover until the hair grew out? I hate to admit it, but I couldn’t rock out with my scalp out. I had to cover it. In come the wigs….

I took a trip to Nigel’s Beauty Emporium and they were amazingly helpful. I never wore a wig for daily wear before, just a couple of hours here and there for costumes. They helped me pick a wig, showed me how to put it on correctly, and care for it.

I’m now, officially, addicted. Its so nice to be able to change my hair style in the blink of an eye. I’ve had a lot of fun playing around with different styles.

This is my favorite wig – I literally can’t leave the house without getting stopped by someone wanting the name of my hair dresser:

I’ve cut my hair in this style and am slowly growing it back out.

These are a couple I like quite a bit but are not my daily wear “work” hair:

I may post more about wigs and wig care resources I used to learn what to do.

post work out goofy face

How I almost died and learned to love exercise

I am a nerd, raised by nerds, who stares at computer screens all day for my livelihood. I am not an “exercise” person. I’ve always had the attitude that “stupid,” “sporty” people exercised and I was definitely not one of them. I don’t like sweating, I don’t like being tired and I definitely don’t like the “bimbo” stereotype of girls who exercise. Oh boy, did I get proven wrong by my own body.

2016 was a crappy year for a lot of people but for me it was literally the worst. Near the end of the year, I contracted Influenza and MRSA pneumonia. I fell asleep on Christmas Eve and woke up three weeks later, in 2017, plugged into machinery and confined to bed. I had been in a medically induced coma and had several surgeries – my lungs were not functioning on their own.

Once I was really awake, it dawned on me that I withered away – I had a hard time moving because I had no muscle left! I lost over FORTY pounds and had to gather my strength to walk, talk, and live again. It took every ounce of energy I had to move, every ounce of patience I could muster to stop myself from crying at every difficulty, and an even greater amount of rest to get myself well enough to go home.

It wasn’t easy but with the help of physical therapists, nurses, and my husband – I got up, I got walking and I got better. After three months, I was released from the hospital but I wasn’t done pushing myself. Believe me, I tried to get away with the minimal amount of working out at first but really soon realized that if I didn’t move my body everyday, I’d slide backwards and would end up in the hospital again.

I started out very slowly, walking as much as I could, practicing standing up, climbing the stairs. Yes, I was so weak that I had to practice standing up. I moved up to exercising with no weights – going through the motions with my arms and legs. I moved up to filled water bottles and then five-pound weights. I got on my bicycle again. At first I tootled around my parking lot and then biked a little farther and a little farther. As soon as I could bike a mile, I started biking up the biggest hill in my neighborhood – a few hundred feet of elevation in under a mile. I started to notice real muscles forming.

I also started to notice I had really bad mood swings some days and realized that when I tried to take days off from my exercise routines, I would end up moody, sad or angry every time. It was like clock work, I’d take a day off and the next day, the swings would come in to ruin my day.

I biked up the hill every night, taking shorter and shorter breaks until I only had to stop for traffic lights. Once I made it up that hill with no breaks, which I had a hard time doing even before I got sick, I knew I was ready to be harder on myself. So I picked up some workout DVDs; I usually hate the happy bimbos in those things but by a happy accident, I FINALLY found an instructor that didn’t make me want to smash my television screen in. I’ve worked out almost everyday since I put in the first DVD.

After only having use of less than 20% of my lung capacity when I went into the hospital on Christmas day 2016 to a normal capacity of 70% in Mid July 2017, I say the working out has serious results.

I hated working out before because I never worked hard enough or long enough to feel good afterwards. It’s finally happened, I broke through the pain and soreness and don’t feel horrible working out anymore, only sweaty and tired. I’ve learned to live with sweaty and tired.

I love the results of working out – feeling and looking better. I always thought you sporty people were nuts and now, I’m one of you.