Tag Archives: magical

Chinese Birthday Cake recipe - I can finally reproduce the whipped cream/fresh fruit sponge cake from the Asian bakery at home!

ASIAN BIRTHDAY CAKE RECIPE EXISTS!! – the350degreeoven.com

By the time you read this, I will be at Disneyland celebrating in true Californian fashion! 

It’s weird being another year older because I always feel much younger, like I’m still 19 in my brain or something. Time has begun to go by so quickly that it’s literally like I haven’t let it all sink in yet. It’s really strange. I’m a lot happier this year than I’ve been on past birthdays, though, and that’s nice. I’d really like to be one of those people who get better with age and develop more into their own skin. That would be nice. I think I’ve accomplished a lot of things in a year. I paid down debt, I’ve lost almost 20 lbs., I’ve started this blog and seen it grow a LOT, and even more, I’ve grown a lot as a person.

For my birthday, I thought I’d do a few fun list tag things so I’ll be doing 2 – 25 Things I’d Like to do BEFORE I turn 25 ( never done this before ) and a bloggy birthday tag. I hope you all enjoy and thanks so much for reading my blog ❤

25 Before 25

  1. Visit New Orleans, LA and some other places in the South USA. 
  2. Film, Direct & Star in a Film Short.
  3. Get An Agent & Book Some Work!
  4. Go Back to Acting Class and/or Get An Acting Coach.
  5. Start A YouTube Channel for Storybook Apothecary.
  6. Record Myself Singing.
  7. Learn to play guitar or the piano.
  8. Get some Tattoos.
  9. Go back to Wales to visit my friends there & maybe meet up with some blogger friends in UK – would be so cool!
  10. Go on a Disney Cruise to the Bahamas.
  11. Learn to speak Chinese, Korean, Italian and get back my fluency in French.
  12. Master these Accents – British, Australian, New Zealand, Cockney, Welsh, Irish, andddd Scottish.
  13. Book a lead in a TV show that’s as awesome as the BBC Misfits.
  14. Book a lead in a feature film.
  15. Model for a clothing company. It just seems like fun to me!
  16. Do more nice things for strangers. I once bought this woman soldier in the Army a meal without her knowing it. It was the best feeling ever to give back like that.
  17. Host a dinner party.
  18. Find someone to give a makeover or get a makeover from or something. I just think styling someone would be fun.
  19. Get my nose pierced again & maybe my eyebrow. I used to have them both, though not at once. Miss it!
  20. Grow An Inch – It would be so optimal to be 5’7 or nearly 5’7 – just saying.
  21. Be Able to Squat 100 lbs. I just think it would be cool.
  22. Get & Maintain a Flat Stomach & Nice Toned Arms & Legs.
  23. Get A Natural Summer Tan.
  24. Go to Comic Con, Anime Expo or something like that & Dress Up!
  25. Go on a trip with my friends 🙂

The Birthday Tag!

{ I got this tag from Arabella }


1.) When is your birthday? My birthday is today – April 20th, 1989, that is, which now means I’m older than a lot of the beauty “gurus”. Gurus is such a strange thing to call yourself- all I think of is yogis.

2.) How old are you turning? (Or if your birthday recently passed, how old did you turn?) I am turning 24.

3.) What was your favorite present that you’ve ever received? My favorite present that I received is probably my Disneyland annual passport that my boyfriend got me on my 21st birthday. Best surprise gift EVER!

4.) Are you/did you have a party this year? if so what are you doing? Nope. I don’t have enough friends to fill up a party haha. My boyfriend did try to organize one for me a few years ago and it was literally us and 2 people. We have a small group of friends and that’s it really . I have other friends from high school, but they all live kind of far now. Plus, parties are expensive and no one really turns up for them it seems like. Maybe it’s just me haha.

5.) How do you usually celebrate your birthday? I normally just get my annual Asian birthday cake ( BEST EVER ) and go eat with friends or my boyfriend or something. These past few years we’ve been kind of obsessed with spending it at Disneyland though.

6.) What was the most memorable birthday that you had? The most memorable birthday was when my boyfriend surprised me with my Disneyland passport and we went for the day. I didn’t actually believe him until we were in the park. It was such a great day 🙂

7.) If you had an unlimited amount of money what would you do for your birthday? I would go on a trip to New Orleans or South Carolina or something. I’m just really fascinated with the South lately.

8.) What’s your birthday wish list? I actually made on on Pinterest & you can see it here, if you like!

9.) If you only had one birthday left, what would you do for your birthday? I would go on a trip or cruise to the Bahamas or something. Or maybe just spend it traveling all over.

10.) Show a picture from your birthday, preferably an embarrassing one. I’m so sorry, but I literally can’t find one. I had one from my 18th birthday and if I find it, I promise to upload it.

11.) Do you have any birthday traditions? Asian birthday cake, dim sum, and uhh… Disneyland! That’s about it haha.

12.) What’s your favorite part about your birthday? The fact that I can use it as a reason to get my way with my boyfriend for the entire day haha. So I make a point to make ridiculous requests.

13.) What’s one thing that changed a lot since your last birthday? My perspective.

14.) Have you ever been thrown a surprise party or have you ever thrown one for someone? I have never been thrown one, but I threw one for my boyfriend 2 years ago and it was really awesome to surprise him like that!

Hope You All Have A Great Saturday!

♥ Tianna


Special 2 for $20 For Fairest of Them All Healing Face Powders!

Normally priced at $15 each, for a limited time, Storybook Apothecary readers can get 2 full sized powders for only $20 !

Hurry While This Offer Lasts!

Purchase 2 Fairest of Them All Healing Face Powders for $20 – Here!

Just thought I’d mention really quick! The lovely Courtney Leiva @TheDollhouseBlog recently reviewed Storybook Apothecary’s Fairest of Them All Healing Face Powder and Snow’s Eternal Youth Elixir Serum!

Check out the review – here!

Also, definitely check out her other posts on health and beauty and follow her @CourtneyLeiva on Twitter for the latest in beauty, giveaways and more!

Thanks again Courtney!


June Jet Set Birchbox Review

If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember last month’s disappointment with the May Gossip Girl Birchbox (See that Review – here!). I did decide to keep my Birchbox subscription for one more month because I did really love the Diorshow Extase Mascara (see the Review on that – Here!)  and I am super glad that I did!

This month’s box was AMAZING!

This month’s theme was Jet Set so a lot of things came in amazing travel sizes and come in handy for traveling.

Check out the Goods!

(Yes, I am still on this kick of saying this! It WILL catch on!)

Designer Cynthia Rowley Band Aids 

These are very cute and stylish band aids! Super convenient for me considering that I recently ran out of my Hello Kitty ones.

Mervita Rose Floral Water

This is so appropriate for Summer!

Living in Southern California, it can get scorching hot (like 100 degrees Fahrenheit), so this is an amazing way to cool down on super hot days and I’ve been eyeing Mervita products for months!

theBalm Stainiac Lip and Cheek Stain

Every Birchbox review I read this month mentioned this item and that I’d likely get one.

I really like it, although the consistency is a bit strange and different for a lip/cheek stain type product! It feels more like a gel type consistency going on, it’s not too runny, but it does spread nicely and give a lips and cheeks a natural looking “blush.”

Yu-Be Moisturizing Skin Cream

 I’ve heard a bit about this natural skin cream and, although I was pretty interested in it, this sample has sort of killed all curiosity. It is pretty moisturizing, it feels a bit like petroleum jelly though so I don’t know how I feel about that, and it smells distinctly of Vicks Vapor Rub cream? If you don’t have Vicks or you’ve never experienced it, it smells strongly medicinal like Eucalyptus. I think some may enjoy this, but it just makes me feel like I’m putting Vicks on. That being said, it is okay to use as a hand cream.

Birchbox Man John Varvatos Cologne 

I received the Birchbox Man sample of John Varvatos cologne, of course, which I promptly handed off to the nearest male. Seems pretty nice, though I can’t say I know any guys who would invest in a monthly “beauty” subscription; maybe some of the gay guys I know, but unlikely any of the straight ones will. They’re just so cheap!

Eyeko London Skinny Liquid Eyeliner 

This is my favorite item of this month’s box!

It has a nice pointed felt tip pen type applicator and, unlike many of the other purple eyeliner pens I’ve used, this one is very pigmented and a nice deep dark purple which I love!

Check out the Swatches :

And that’s it!

I really am so glad I decided to stick with Birchbox for another month because this month was certainly much better than the last! I really think this had a lot of great value for the money and look forward to trying all these items and possibly doing some future reviews.

Check out last month’s Birchbox review – here! 

Have you received the Birchbox?

What’s your favorite beauty box subscription?


Should Storybook Apothecary Make a Bronzing Oil? + A Fun Contest!

So, in this post, I am asking for your help!

I have been toying with this idea for awhile and it really started keeping me awake at night ever since I did this post and talked about my obsession with bronzing oils, multi-use oils and body oils such as the ones by Josie Maran and Nuxe.

Should I make and offer a bronzing oil or even a multi-use body oil at Storybook Apothecary?

Or otherwise, I can simply do a DIY post on it and teach you all how to make your own at home!

And if I should offer one, which of these bottles is prettiest to hold the lovely oil?

Best/Most intriguing/Hilarious / Witty Answer wins a free full size bottle of either the NEW Storybook Apothecary  multi-use oil/body oil/bronzing oil/ whatever or a full size of the DIY version that I decide to make in one of these pretty bottles!

Okay & Go!


New Photos for Storybook Apothecary’s Fairest of Them All Healing Face Powder!

“Snow” Shade

So, yesterday, Storybook Apothecary was featured in an article on Sheckys.com!

Check out the article – here!

Then I was so grateful to see it repeatedly tweeted by the super nice Courtney Leiva, the very talented blogger and beauty editor.

Check out her blog – here!

I was so excited because it hasn’t been featured anywhere in anything yet so it was really flattering to see someone feature the Snow’s Eternal Youth Elixir Serum!

I am so ecstatic about this!

Anyhow, just thought I would share some newly updated photos of the Fairest of Them All Healing Face Powder shades that I recently took!

What do you think?

“Goldilocks” Shade

I definitely feel it’s much better than the crappy photos I had before which were taken on my cell phone with the not so good camera.

(Droid X2, in case you were wondering)

“Chocolate” Shade

Luckily, I was able to borrow my mom’s amazing camera to take these with an awesome macro lens.


Unfamiliar with these powders?

Learn More about them in a post I wrote awhile back – here.

Or check them out in my Etsy Shop – here.

Thanks to everyone for all the encouragement and support; I appreciate it!


Healthy Green (Sort of) Berry Smoothie Recipe!

So, last night I was all about making the best smoothie recipes, especially green smoothies because I want to make sure I get all the greens and nutrients I need throughout the day for energy and immunity.

I adapted my own version of the Green Berry Smoothie I found over at JoyofSmoothies.

First off, I used organic frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blackberries and blueberries mix). I used the whole pack that I had, but I think it was about 1-2 cups so it’s up to you how many you want to toss in. I love berries so yep!

If you want to or have them on hand, you can opt for fresh berries of your choice, but this is just what I had on hand.

Also, if you use fresh, you may need to use more ice/water than I did.

Next I added about 1.5-2 handfuls of fresh organic spinach leaves.

What surprised me about this smoothie is the fact that I cannot taste the spinach AT ALL.

I am not sure whether it’s because I used a lot of berries to balance it or what, but its awesome!

The last thing I added was 2 bananas which really added a bit of sweetness to the smoothie and helped to counteract any bitterness from the berries.


  • 1/2-1 Bag Organic Frozen Mixed Berries (1-2 Cups Fresh with 1 Cup Crushed Ice)
  • 1-2 Handfuls of Organic Fresh Spinach
  • 2 Bananas (Fresh or frozen; if frozen, try to freeze your own and use overripe ones as they are the sweetest!)


  • Blend your berries first if you’re using the frozen kind, otherwise the order won’t matter. I spent a bit of time blending my berries first to break apart the pieces of frozen fruit that stuck together. 
  • After the berries are blended, add the spinach and blend.
  • Lastly, add your bananas in little chunks. I just broke them apart with my hand. This made blending a lot faster than if they were whole. 
  • That’s it!
All in all, I really like this smoothie.
I’m not a big fan of the weird “green” taste of most green smoothie recipes, but this doesn’t have any hint of what I like to call “grass taste.”
The original version of this added protein powder, but I only have chocolate whey powder at the moment and I thought that might taste funny so I skipped this ingredient.
This smoothie would work well for breakfast, a midday snack or even for pre or post workout meals if you want to add the protein powder from the original recipe.
Either way, I definitely hope you try it!
Don’t let the weird purple/brown color fool you; this smoothie is delicious!
What’s your favorite kind of smoothie?
Do you prefer all fruit, all vegetable or a mix of both?
That’s all for now !
Stay Beautiful
I’ll Talk To You Soon : ]

May Gossip Girl Birchbox Review

So, I got my May Gossip Girl Birchbox today.

I have to say that as my first Birchbox, I was not really that impressed.

When I opened the box, this is what I saw.

Then this.

Then this when I opened up the box.

Cute wrapping.

These were in the box…

^ Can someone explain this to me?

I didn’t receive anything on this list above except the Twistband and the beautyblender cleanser so I don’t know if that means I’m missing things or what the purpose of listing these products like this is?


Okay, anyway, moving on…

Miss Dior by Dior

Mandarin Citrus, Jasmine & Patchouli Notes

You can really smell the jasmine in this.

Diorshow Extase Mascara by Dior

I really like the brush on this mascara.

Beautyblender Blendercleanser

I like that this is a soy based brush cleanser.

Twistband Headband

This looks so cheap.

It looks literally like a piece of elastic band with the ends tied in a knot together.

Pretty sure that’s what it is.

These retail at 6 for $20 (a little less than $4 each which is INSANE IMO)

Notecard and Envelope

I actually think this is adorable stationery and a lovely way to send a note.

So, that’s everything that was in the Birchbox.

 My favorite items are the soy-based brush cleaner by beautyblender and the Diorshow Extase Mascara.

I am not sure what I was expecting, but I feel that this box was a lot of fluff in packaging and very little product.

I previously said that MyGlam was a lackluster subscription, but now after trying Birchbox, I’d say that in MyGlam you get way more bang for your buck, but little to no designer products.

I think that overall, I expected a lot more given that Birchbox has a waiting list and they were so talked up by everyone.

I guess I felt that it was lacking product; not necessarily full size or deluxe size products, but even small foil samples would have added to the box a lot more than what was actually in this box.

Anyhow, that being said, the product that comes in this box was definitely high end product so if your thing is designer brands or more expensive products and that’s something you want to try before you purchase, the Birchbox may be something you want to try for a few months.

All in all, I will not likely continue my subscription.

I might try it for one more month to see the variation of their samples, but unlikely to last in the long term.

I recommend this to those who like/love designer brands and want to try a lot of different products.

I will update on each of the products I received in this box in a week or two after I’ve had time to do proper evaluation.


Has anyone else tried Birchbox and had similar or different thoughts?

Let me know your opinion on Birchbox below!

Hope this review was helpful and I will update on the product reviews so follow me and stay tuned for that!

Stay Beautiful


I’ll Talk To You Soon! : ]

Shop Storybook Apothecary


NEW! Snow’s Fairest of Them All Brightening Beauty and Anti Aging Facial Exfoliant

Hi All!

I am so excited to release this new facial exfoliant from Storybook Apothecary!

It utilizes all natural ingredients such as organic papaya and licorice extracts in order to exfoliate dead skin cells, encourage cell turnover and collagen production, and reveal a brighter and more glowing complexion!

I created this exfoliant as an alternative to their more abrasive chemical lab counterparts like retinol (vitamin A derivatives) which doesn’t always work for everyone and often has side effects such as dryness and peeling of the skin.

Given that the natural ingredients I use in this exfoliant have the vitamins needed to slough off dead cells and encourage cell regeneration in their natural form, they will work just as well if not better than the synthetic lab forms of vitamin C or vitamin A used in many mainstream brands (papaya extract has natural vitamin C and Alfalfa Extract has natural Vitamin A).

I have also included Organic Manuka Honey UMF 12+ with Bee Venom for added hydration and antibacterial effects so it can help clear your skin of breakouts and hydrate while the extracts work to slough off dead skin cells. The bee venom is said to have a temporary tightening effect on the skin.

If used correctly, this facial exfoliant WILL NOT make your face peel. It will use nature’s ingredients to work to slough off dead skin cells and unclog pores for a clearer, more vibrant complexion.

I really hope you guys will try my new brightening exfoliant and have great results!

Check out below for more information on the ingredients I use in this facial exfoliator.

Snow’s Fairest of Them All Brightening Beauty and Anti Aging Facial Exfoliant

Created to keep your skin looking youthful, clear and glowing from within, this natural facial exfoliator harnesses the botanical powers of organic licorice extract, papaya extract, fruit juices and soy rice peptides for a magnificent beauty that will surely have the mirror on the wall saying “You are the fairest of them all” !

For use on all skin types, especially acneic and dry skin.

Organic Licorice Extract – Known for it’s anti-inflammatory properties, licorice is great for naturally brightening the complexion, calming redness and irritation and revealing a clearer complexion.

Organic Aloe Vera Juice – Organic aloe vera juice is a great calming base to use instead of just water. Incredibly hydrating, it helps retain moisture in the skin while the exfoliating extracts work their magic!

Organic Lemon and Apple Juice – These pure fruit juices help to gently exfoliate dead skin cells from your face to reveal a more fresh and glowing complexion beneath. They also offer great brightening and cleansing effects.

Organic Manuka Honey UMF 12+ with BEE VENOM – Perfect for locking in moisture and killing acne- causing bacteria, organic manuka honey is great to treat acne and other irritations while also locking in moisture to the skin as you exfoliate the skin. Bee venom is said to have a temporary tightening effect on the skin.

Organic Papaya Extract – Papaya is known to have great brightening effects to the skin and protection from free radicals.

Soy Rice Peptides – Soy rice peptides are great protein components that will help to encourage collagen and elastin production, improving cell turnover and regeneration. These peptides are also known to help in the reduction of dark circles and pigmentation in the skin.

ECO CERTIFIED Green Tea Extract – Green tea extract has incredible cleansing properties as well as offering a plumping affect to the skin given its caffeine content. It may also help to brighten the complexion, protect from free radicals and help soften fine lines.

Ingredients: Organic Aloe Vera Juice, Organic Apple Juice, Organic Lemon Juice, Organic Manuka Honey UMF 12+ WITH BEE VENOM, Organic Licorice Extract, Organic Papaya Extract, Soy-Rice Peptides, ECOCERT Green Tea Extract, Sea Fennel Extract and Alfalfa Extract.

Check out Snow’s Fairest of Them All Brightening Beauty and Anti Aging Facial Exfoliant Here!

Shop All Storybook Apothecary!

That’s all for now.

Stay Beautiful


I’ll Talk To You Soon! : ]


Top Foods for Beautiful Hair, Skin and Nails

So, I have had an extremely busy weekend!

I take a Mandarin Chinese class on Saturdays and recently had a final so I was studying like mad and haven’t had time to blog all weekend.

That being said, I’m also busy catching up on all the housework I neglected all weekend since I was studying instead.

Here are some fun foods for great hair, skin and nails.

Enjoy !

Foods for Glowing Skin:

  • Blueberries
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • Kiwis
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Yogurt
  • Avocadoes
  • Green Tea

 Foods for Strong Nails:

  •  Citrus Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Eggs
  • Chicken & Turkey
  • Papaya
  • Broccoli
  • Lentils
  • Cheese

Foods for Healthy, Shiny Hair:

  • Salmon
  • Dark Leafy Greens
  • Nuts
  • Eggs
  • Whole Grains
  • Carrots
  • Shrimp
  • Beans
That’s all for now lovelies!
Stay Beautiful
I’ll Talk To You Soon! : ]