Archive | December 2011

Taking a month-long break…

Happy holidays! Hope everyone had a very merry christmas filled with joyous festivities and plenty of good weather!

taking a break
Image source

You may have noticed that I’ve been absent on the blog for a few weeks. I’ve been deperately busy in the office and trying to quit my job at the same time, unpacking and moving things around in my new home … a busy, busy bee! My eczema is still, and I think will always be, an issue. I just hope I can control it so that eventually the flare ups are fewer and much farther apart. I started this blog because I wanted a place to vent, to document how my eczema was progressing, and a place to jot down my thoughts as I still try and figure out routines that will please both my eczema and me! (And yep, in that order. Maybe my eczema before myself…) I do still plan on blogging about eczema but for the time being, I need to take a break and catch up on other things before I can dedicate more time to the blog. You can still catch me on Twitter and Pinterest (I’m always Pinning away as I’m figuring out how to organise my new home).

I hope you all have a very happy holiday and I wish you the very best of skin health in 2012! See you in February!


Photos of Taiwan IV: In Food

I’m not at all a foodie but I love to take pictures of food. Food photography, when done right, makes my mouth water so much more than actual food does, and so I love to try and capture a good shot. I think it’s also a great way to practice using my camera, with macro functions and bokeh.

Everyone says there’s a ton of delicious food in Taiwan but I find that unless you know where to go, it’s hard to find something “authentic”. I think that’s true for most holidays, unless you happen to be in a busy area. We were in a real rush for most of the trip, trying to catch trains and buses and so were just glad to be able to pick up any food at all. I may hate major brands (Starbucks!) for chewing up the Mom and Pop stores but I have to admit they’re a life saver when I’m in an unfamiliar place and in a rush.

bibimbap kaohsiung
Yup. I had korean food in Taiwan! Bibimbap.

Shin ramen. Always reliable, especially at night, at a convenience store in the middle of nowhere!


Love the chalk menu!

Dumplings. My all-time favourite food!

Hotel breakfast. I get really hungry in the mornings.

Just to had to throw these in. So lively!

kids in taiwanballroom dancing in kaohsiung

Photos of Taiwan III: Tainan and Taipei

I promised to post the rest of my trip to Taiwan and here they are! I pretty much finishd up Kaohsiung in a day so we headed to Tainan to see the countryside and also spent half a day in Taipei.

Outside Kaohsiung train station.

Leaving Kaohsiung train station, and on route to Tainan.

I love train stations. Xinying station in Tainan.

Xinyi District. Lots of finance buildings and the most “urban” place I saw on the whole trip!

Taipei 101 and a sleeping Buddha.

Eczema Back with a Vengeance, Thanks Dan Ryan’s

Way too salty lasagne.

Very good brownie with vanilla ice cream.

I knew I couldn’t expect my week-long eczema free bliss to last (oh super smooth skin, how I miss you!), but I didn’t think it would come back so vengefully! I can honestly say it was easily the worst eczema nights of my life. I’m going to have to shake my fist at Dan Ryan‘s! Here’s how my night of terror went:

7:30pm – Dinner at Dan Ryan’s. The potato skins and brownie + ice cream were fine, delicious even. The lasagne was way too salty and it felt off even as I was eating it. I’ve had bad experiences with Dan Ryan’s mains before (not eczema-related) but I hadn’t been there in so long that I guess I just forgot. I managed to get through a third of the lasagne, decided not to waste the rest and asked for it to be packed.

Midnight – I’m about to sleep. At this point, I’ve been itching for two hours since I got home from dinner. My skin is dry and flaky but luckily no rashes had popped up yet. I take an antihistamine, add an extra layer of moisturiser and drnk two more glasses of water before I sleep. I feel like I have my eczema-prevention routine down, right?

3:30am – I’m so itchy I could die! I am woken up from an intense itch. I’m already having a nightmare and scratching, so I’m half awake at this point. The itching is so intense that the shoulder area actually HURTS, like a fresh wound being exposed to oxygen. I get up and drink some more water, just trying to bear with it. I only get about 15 minutes sleep when the pain wakes me up again. It feels like something is burning, and it’s itching at the same time. I turn on the light, FRUSTRATED. I’m also mad because I need the sleep – it’s been a long week already and I know my body needs to catch as many minutes of sleep as it can.

3:45am – I get up and turn the light on to look at this monster. WHAT is happening to my body? Why is it itchy AND painful? There’s nothing on my skin, it’s barely even red. I try and take a picture of it with my phone in my sleepy state. It looks fine, but sore when I touch it though. Close my eyes and drift off for about 10 minutes when it itches again. I apply some steroid cream on it.

4am – The steroid cream is not working! Check Twitter to see what’s happening and Tweet about this disaster. Almost decide to take part in Modcloth’s I Spy Thursday giveaway to distract me from the itching, but I can’t concentrate! I should be focusing on trying to get back to sleep anyways.

4:15am – I think I’m okay, time to turn the lights back out. Except that it’s not okay. I can’t even take my hand off it because it hurts less when my hand is applying pressure on my shoulder. Drink more water and clip my nails.

4:30am – FRUSTRATED. Nothing is working and I NEED to sleep! I grab an ice pack to freeze the skin – it’s one of my last resort remedies to immediately relieve itching (it doesn’t last though). I fall asleep like that, with a towel-wrapped ice pack under my armpit and finally manage to make it to 7:45am. Was obviously very late for work this morning.

What a disaster. What do I think caused it? I’m not too sure. My best guess is the food. My lack of sleep throughout the week probably set up me such that the E monster would be easily triggered, by anything. I’m thinking it was the salty lasagne, specifically salt, MSG and the tomatoes. I’m usually fine when tomatoes are cooked and not raw, but when you’re body isn’t at it’s strongest, I guess even unusual triggers will get to you. Spanish food tonight with friends, I’ll just try and eat less to avoid making it worse. Maybe I’ll just chow on some plain bread instead.

How was everyone’s eczema this week?