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My Top 8 Guilty Pleasure Songs (Eurovision 2017 Edition)

After I shared my top 5 favourite Eurovision entries, it’s time to share my ultimate guilty pleasures list XD

These are the songs that might be quite unpopular to be liked, with eccentric/strange packaging, disastrous live performance but good radio version or vice versa, or other kinds of flaws… but I still find them enjoyable at some point in my life. So… here we go!

8. Slovenia

This song came to my attention only because I was searching with ‘my’ keyword in Eurovision 2017 Spotify playlist. I was looking for ‘My Friend’ (Croatian entry) and I didn’t delete the keyword and this song was played immediately afterwards (weird story, I know ^^’ ). This is another ballad which some people might find a bit boring, but it was not that bad, actually. Well, to be honest, the one in Spotify is better than the live performance ^^’

7. Estonia

I always have a high hope for Estonia since Elina Born & Stig Rästa‘s performance in 2015, but honestly, this one is no match for that. In spite of that, I keep listening to this song over and over again. I don’t know. I like it when they sing the ‘Aaaaaaaa…’ part in the refrain ^^’

6. Cyprus

🙄 was my immediate reaction when I first listened to this song. It did not help when I watched the video clip either but somehow it helped when I finally saw the live performance: I think Hovig hit it off. I appreciate the choreography and although it was often compared to Belgian 2015’s entry, in terms of packaging, I think this entry has a better song (more melodious, probably, I don’t know). It’s still not a song that I like head-over-heels but I’ll say not bad for now (what a huge change of mood ^^’ ).

5. Ukraine

Again, another song I found accidentally through the Spotify playlist. In the sea of ballads, this song feels kind of refreshing. It certainly reminds me of The Rasmus, or Muse probably. I might not like the visual (live performance), but this is an okay song to listen to.

4. Greece

I love the singer and I wished she had sung in Greek. I was kind of disappointed when they chose this song instead of the other one. I disliked the video clip they released but the live performance was a little bit better, actually. I wish she would hit the high note, though. I think it will boost her performance, but let’s see!

3. Germany

I really feel guilty for actually liking this song because the beginning sounds like a copy and paste of Sia’s song. But otherwise, this is a catchy song – or at least easy to listen to. And thanks to the familiarity of the melody, I find myself sing along to this in no time (facepalm).

2. Moldova

I always like the song that makes me dance. And weird as it can be, it’s – always – hard – for – me – not – to – like – a – song – with – violin. So there it goes with this one. Catchy rhythm: check, killer dance moves: check, energetic team: check, dress transformation: yesssss! how did they do that?? XD In two words: sleek performance.

1. Montenegro

This entry is on top of my guilty pleasure list. And to make it worse, I have actually known (but did not want to admit) since I first listened to the song. As opposed to the entry from Moldova, I did not actually like the live performance (or the video clip, for that matter). But then again, I can never refuse the song that tempts me to dance. So yeah… this is my ultimate guilty pleasure (facepalm) XD

So here you are. My ultimate guilty pleasure list. I don’t know why I have so many guilty pleasure songs this year. What about you? Do you have a song that you like but don’t dare to admit? :p

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My Top 5 Entries for Eurovision 2017

It’s the time of the year again! Well well. It’s been so long since I updated this blog (facepalm) but today I would like to share some of my favourite entries from Eurovision Song Contest!

(A quick note: it’s annual international song competition, although the participants are mostly from Europe. Sweden won 6 times since participating in 1958 and ABBA was one of the winners 😉 )

But of course, we shouldn’t dwell in the past! Because this year we have a number of great songs (well, great according to me, that is). So if you’re looking for an alternative to music to listen to, you’re welcome to check them out!

1. Sweden

Ah. Robin Bengtsson. Wonder why he’s so gorgeous. 😍 I have been captivated since I watched his first performance in Melodifestivalen (the Swedish selection for Eurovision). He was not a favourite for Swedish public back then so it came as a surprise that he won. But not for me. He had a quite consistent performance throughout the competition and of course, I’m glad that he made it to the final! Lycka till, Robin!

2. France

France was among the first countries that announced their song for this competition and I completely fall in love with this song at that very moment!!! 😍😍😍 although my French ability is a big zero, I just hit it off with this song! Too bad they modified it for the final version and I like this version better but nevertheless, best of luck, France!

3. Portugal

This song is so dreamy, like coming straight out of fairy tale. Again, I have no idea on Portuguese (language) but this song touched my heart just like that! 😍 I think he had the best performance during the semi-final. Undoubtedly the best entry from Portugal for the past 3 years. I hope it goes well in the final! Good luck, Salvador!

4. Croatia

What’s with me and tenor singers? I can not NOT love song that is sung by tenor singer! And it begins with a violin! How can I NOT like that? I know that some people think this song is weird, some kind of failed mashed up between opera and pop but for me, this song is sooooo way underrated! I hope Jacques performed well though. I’m looking forward to his live performance!

5. Austria

Ah, Austria. Beautiful country with no less beautiful singer.
Ok. Maybe cute is a better word to describe Nathan Trent. Honestly, I first fall in love with the video clip and not the song itself (facepalm). But it didn’t take long for me to start liking the song. I know the song is simple, too simple for some, perhaps. But for me, this is the charm of this song. It’s an easy-listening song that you play when you’re together with your friends or with the cute guy next door that is Nathan Trent (I wish!!! Haha 😂😂😂). Good luck Austria!!

And while those are on my top list, I have made another list of song that… maybe not as great, but they become my guilty pleasure anyway. I will tell more in my next post! 😉

What about you? Do you watch Eurovision, too? Which song is your favourite? Please share! 😉

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The Mug Cake Experiment

Jadi ceritanya sebelum puasa aku sempet belanja di supermarket sejuta umat bernama Willy’s di bilangan Friedhemsplan, Stockholm. Pas mau bayar, aku ngeliat setumpuk buku masak gitu deket pintu keluarnya Nah entah kesambet apa, tiba-tiba aku mikir, ‘Ih pengen deh beli buku masak itu.’ dan akhirnya aku beli aja dong, ga cuma satu tapi DUA buku masak. Hahahahahaha… XD Padahal dulu aku anti banget kan sama yang namanya masak-masakan. Mana bukunya pake Bahasa Swedia, tapi aku sokiye aja beli 😛 Abis bukunya nampak mudah dan menarik, sih… Udah gitu full color pula *mure* hehehehe 😛

Buku yang pertama ceritanya tentang cara bikin Mug Cakes dengan mudah dan cepat gitu, terus buku yang kedua sebenernya buku masak buat anak-anak 😛

Tapi entah kenapa, setelah aku beli pun aku masih ragu-ragu bin takut buat nyoba. Asli ga penting banget. Sampe akhirnya si mas nunjukin video cara bikin mug cakes dengan cepat, (tampak) mudah, dan cantik berikut ini:

Itu asli ngileeeeeeeeeeeer lah liatnya. Ih kok hasilnya cantik? Ih kok kayanya gampang? Mau bikiiiiiiiiiiinn!!! *anaknya mudah dipengaruhi* 😛

Setelah meminta restu si mas (yang mana ternyata dia juga pengen bikin dengan varian berbeda :P), akhirnya kemaren nyobain lah bikin yang ‘Funfetti’… Resepnya nyontek dari sini.

Hasilnya gimana?

Ya… Kira-kira gini deh:

Source of 'Expectation' image: Screenshot from Gemma Staford's 1 Minute Mug Cake Video. Image combined using  frabz.com

Source of ‘Expectation’ image: Screenshot from Gemma Staford’s 1 Minute Mug Cake Video. Image combined using frabz.com

Ya biarpun hasilnya ga secantik aslinya, rasanya tetep enak kok :3 Bener deh… :3 Mau dibikinin ga? Hehehehe… Terus karena aku belum bisa bikin bubblegum frosting kaya di videonya, akhirnya diganti cream cheese deh atasnya. Terus sprinklesnya diganti sama yang bulet-bulet soalnya ga nemu yang kembang-kembang di supermarket. :3

Jadi… gitu deh kira-kira percobaan pertama bikin mug cakes. Pengen deh nyoba lagi. Bikin yang mana ya berikutnya…? 😛

Alicia

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Sedikit Update-an Tidak Penting di Awal Bulan Puasa

Halo halo semuanya… Udah lama ya ngga update blog ini… Maklum sibuk… Hehehehe 😛 *dilempar sendal*

Berhubung udah masuk bulan puasa, diriku ingin mengucapkan, selamat menjalankan ibadah puasa, mohon maaf lahir dan batin (biarpun pas aku nulis ini aku yakin temen-temen di Indonesia udah pada buka semuanya :P). Tapi berhubung saat ini daku berdomisili di luar angkasa belahan bumi utara, yang mana puasanya aja 20 jam, jadi ya… masih valid dong yah diucapin selamat puasa *halah* 😛

Gimana rasanya puasa 20 jam?

Belum kerasa sih sebenernya, soalnya aku baru puasa hari ini. Muhahahaha 😀 dan…. masih ada 7,5 jam lagi sebelum waktu berbuka jadi, ya… So far so good. Lagipula di bulan puasa ini aku udah masuk liburan musim panas, jadi ga mesti ke kampus tiap hari, biarpun bulan depan aku rencananya ngambil summer course Bahasa Swedia yang mana kelasnya tiap hari juga, tapi ya… mudah-mudahan sih ga bakal terlalu cape-cape… Hehehe…

Terus liburan ini udah ngapain aja?

Ga ngapa-ngapain. Hahahahaha. Enjoying holiday to the fullest! 😀 Kemaren sempet buldu ke Paris, alhamdullillah… :3 Seneeeeng. Ternyata Paris baguuuus! *lebay* Padahal selama ini aku ga pengen ke Paris karena mikirnya itu kota mainstream abis buat dikunjungin. Hehehehe… Tapi ternyata rame, dan alhamdulillah karena aku masih muda :3 di bawah 26 tahun, dan punya residence permit EU, jadi bisa masuk banyak museum gratis tis tis…! XD Termasuk ke Louvre, Musee d’Orsay, sama bisa dapet potongan harga naik ke Eiffel juga :3 Alhamdulillah ya…

Sebenernya tujuan awal nulis di sini pengen sharing pengalaman masak-memasak selama di bulan puasa sih *ga nyambung* Hehehehe… Tapi kayanya lebih enak kalo ditulis di postingan berikutnya. Jadi… nantikan di layar komputer Anda! *kemudian ga ada yang baca* 😛 Hehehe..

Sampai jumpa di postingan berikutnya! ❤

Alicia

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Di balik wanita yang sukses ada….

Jadi kemarin pas kuliah “Metode Kualitatif”, kita sebenernya lagi ngebahas analisis naratif tentang anak-anak di Etiopia yang salah satu atau semua orang tuanya meninggal karena HIV/AIDS. Terus entah gimana diskusi berlanjut sampe ngebahas hubungan antara bapak/ibu dengan anak laki-laki/perempuannya gitu. Terus dosennya bilang gini:

Salah satu kunci kesuksesan seorang perempuan ialah ayah yang suportif.

Hmm… Menarik. Seringnya kan kita denger di balik laki-laki yang sukses ada ibu/istri yang mendukungnya. Tapi ada ga sih yang pernah kepikiran sebaliknya? Kalau di balik seorang wanita yang sukses ada peran sang ayah yang selalu mendukungnya? 🙂

Aku pribadi sih memang merasa kalau dukungan seorang ayah itu penting banget buat kemajuan seorang wanita. Tanpa mengecilkan peran seorang ibu loh ya… Berdasarkan pengalaman pribadi aja, sih… Mungkin karena setelah dewasa juga aku cenderung lebih deketnya ke ayah. Tapi kalo denger cerita ibu tentang bagaimana beliau memilih karirnya juga rasanya alm. kakek banyak berperan besar di situ. Juga waktu aku liat disertasi sang dosen yang diceritakan di atas, ternyata latar beliau memilih topik disertasi mengenai pekerja anak, sedikit banyak dipengaruhi oleh latar belakang sang ayah yang pernah menjadi pekerja anak di masa Great Depression di AS sekitar tahun 1900-an awal.

Nah, kalau pengalaman kalian sendiri bagaimana? 😉

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DIY: Gorden

Jadi ceritanya aku baru pindah apartemen nih… Nah di apartemen yang baru ini rupanya jendela-jendelanya ga ada gordennya. Cuma yang di kamar tidur aja nih yang ada gordennya. Itu pun gordennya ga nutup semua bagian jendelanya, jadi kalo orang mau ngintip pun bisa. Nah loh… ga asik kan kalo lagi tidur ada yang ngintipin (siapa juga yang mau ngintipin ente, woy? 😛 😛 😛 ) ya tapi daripada daripada kan, akhirnya kita mutusin buat ke IKEA nyari gorden. Horeeee belanja…! 😛 😛 😛 Huehuehuehueheu

Ternyata oh ternyata, sesampainya di IKEA, ga ada tuh gorden dengan ukuran yang kita pengen. Kebetulan kan apartemen kita letaknya di basement sebuah rumah gitu, jadi jendelanya pun imut-imut, sekitar 60 cm x 60 cm sajah. Sedangkan gorden yang paling kecil ukurannya 1.4 m x 2.5 m. Ada sih yang seukuran jendela, tapi warnanya putih transparan gitu ya sama aja boong dong ^^’

Tadinya sih kita pikir ah yaudahlah gapapa beli aja yang gede itu biarkan menjuntai. Eh tapi kan sayang yah… Kok rasanya mubazir. Nah gataunya pas lagi liat-liat gorden gitu, ada tulisan:

”Potong gorden Anda sesuai ukuran yang anda inginkan dan rapikan dengan SY Snabbfållband.

Weh, apaan lagi tuh?

Taunya si snabbfållband itu kaya semacam ”double tape” buat bikin hem di kain gitu. Aduh ini aku gatau sih istilahnya bener apa ngga, tapi kira-kira gini:

Kalau misalnya kita motong kain, kan biasanya suka ada benang kiwir-kiwir ya, trus bikin kainnya jadi keliatan ga rapi. Nah biar rapi, biasanya itu ujung kainnya dilipet, terus dijait. Istilahnya apa ya? Disom? Apa sih? Diobras? Dineci?

Ya itulah pokoknya.

Nah tapi sekarang ada si ”double tape” ajaib itu, jadi kita tinggal taro “double tape” nya di lipetan kain, trus disetrika. Nanti dia nempel sendiri dan ujung kain kita jadi keliatan rapi.

Trus si Alice yang anaknya mudah terpengaruh ini, merasa tertarik kan. Mikirnya,”Oh ya udah gapapa beli gordennya aja, terus nanti tinggal dipotong dan ujungnya di ”double tape”. Tapi lama-lama kok ya sayangnya gorden sepanjang-panjang itu dipotong. Mahal pula, 99 SEK (ini udah paling murah sih sebenernya 😛 ). Jadi akhirnya mikir, kenapa ga beli kain meteran aja, terus bikin gorden sendiri? Biar hemat, gitu ceritanya. Huehehehe. Nah untungnya mas programmer baik nih mau merestui pasangannya buat bereksperimen (alhamdulillah :3), jadi akhirnya kita cabcus beli kain meteran aja.

Ini karena udah mau masuk musim semi/panas jadi kain-kain di IKEA motifnya lucu-lucuuuuuuu dan banyak yang IJO! Muahahahahahahahahahahahahaha xD Tapi tetep sih ujung-ujungnya milih yang harganya paling murah 😛 Nah kebetulan yang paling murah pun tetep lucu, jadi gapapalah ya… *justifikasi Hehehehehe…

Nah terus aku gatau ya kalo di IKEA Indonesia gimana, tapi kalo di sini, bahkan beli kain pun sistemnya self-service. Jadi kita pilih gulungan kainnya, ukur sendiri, potong sendiri, terus nanti ada keranjang yang terhubung sama komputer terus kalo kita taro kainnya di situ udah bisa kedeteksi aja gitu berapa meter yang kita potong. Canggih meeeeeeeeeennnn!!!! Terus udah aja gitu keluar labelnya kaya di supermarket pas beli buah kiloan.

Foto kain kiloan meteran, semua dikerjakan sendiri

Nah, jadi gimana sih caranya bikin gorden sendiri? Pertama-tama tentunya siapin alat dan bahannya dulu lah ya…

Alat dan bahan

Alat dan bahan (berasa mau masak):

  • Kain (29 SEK/m)
  • Alat jahit: benang, jarum, meteran, gunting
  • Double tape kain (29 SEK/10 m)
  • Setrika

Cara membuat:

Untuk instruksi lengkapnya bisa liat di video ini:

Tapi mungkin bisa diskip sampe menit ke sekian soalnya depannya cuma ngomong-ngomong aja. Hehehe…

Intinya sih kira-kira gini:

  1. Ukur panjang dan lebar jendela
  2. Potong kain sesuai kebutuhan besar jendela
  3. Lipat ujung-ujung kain yang tidak rapi, setrika bila perlu
  4. Selipkan double tape kain di lipatan tersebut, kemudian setrika hingga menempel (aku sih cuma pake di 3 sisi, soalnya yang 1 sisi udah rapi)
  5. Bagian berikutnya tergantung tipe rail jendela juga. Karena aku pake besi batangan yang bisa dilepas, jadi aku jait satu sisi kainnya buat tempat selipan si besi tersebut. Tapi kalo mau praktis sebenernya ada jepitan gorden juga, tapi sekali lagi, tergantung tipe kerai jendelanya.

Udah deh. Kira-kira begini hasil jadinya:

Gorden buah pir ijo XD

Ga rapih sih, ya maklum amatir. Ga bisa jait juga sebenernya tapi aku cukup berbangga lah dengan hasilnya. Lumayan kan jadi bisa menghemat 99 SEK – 30 SEK = 69 SEK. Bisa buat beli kentang 10kg itu… Muhahahahahaha… *anaknya pelit

Jadi… ada yang tertarik bikin? 😛

Love,

Alicia

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My Favorite Entries in Eurovision 2015 (Updated)

Let me clarify. I’m no music expert and this year is the first time I’m fully exposed to Eurovision Song Contest. But so far the experience has been so pleasant. I mean, there are many songs I like. I honestly don’t know what the criteria to win ESC is and some of the songs I’m going to present here are said to ‘will not be able to win’, or ‘not a Eurovision song’, but well… I don’t care 😀 So, here the list goes*… (in no particular order)

*not including songs from Russia, Sweden, Norway, Azerbaijan, Australia, San Marino yet. Either because the official videos/songs haven’t been released/chosen by the time this post is written

  • Italy: Il Volo – Grande Amore

The first time I listened to this song I melted instantly. Their voices reminded me of some of my favorite Italian singers: Il Divo, Andrea Bocelli, especially. And they were so young! How could they have such beautiful voices??? This song can win, in my opinion. Go Il Volo! XD

  • UK: Electro Velvet – Still in Love with You

Seeing Melodifestivalen 2015 had made me thought that the national selection process for Eurovision must have been done that way in every country (open selection). Apparently, that’s not the case of UK. According to what my friends told me, Eurovision’s entry for UK has always been chosen by BBC and the same goes for this entry. In the past few years, UK had been struggling in this competition, so many people might expect more from this year’s entry. Honestly I like this song. The video clip, especially. It’s funny :)))) (for me) And I like that the lyrics have some kind of ‘public health messages’ on it :)))))

Don’t go out in the pouring rain
You might get wet, I’d be upset

You’re bound to get sneezes
Or nasty diseases
Take good care when I’m not there
I’m still in love with you

While I’m on vacation
You be a good patient
Take your medication
I worry so each time I go

Whoever wrote this song must have been quite health-conscious. Or was it related to the famous health system in the UK? We’ll never know 😛

  • Cyprus: John Karayiannis – One Thing I Should Have Done

I first knew this song from my Cypriot friend (Hi Marios! If you read this blog :)))) and I immediately like it! Apparently that was not enough to convince him that I like this song because of the song itself and not because I have a friend from Cyprus ^^’ (the singer is also cute, by the way 😛 ) Well, even my friend thought that this kind of song was not Eurovision song, but anyway….

Actually, I prefer his first arrangement (the one he performed in Cyprus’ final) rather than this new arrangement. But it might be ‘too plain’ for Eurovision’s entry so they might have changed it a little bit (more strings in the latest version). Anyway, good luck for Cyprus! 😀

  • Slovenia: Maraaya – Here For You

When I first watched this video I was kinda like… 😐 And the singer’s voice was… unusual. And what’s with the dancer??

But then I started to like this song and I think this song is really great!! The pianist was really playful and the music was great! Kind of song I really like. Although I’d rather have a real violinist playing in the background rather than the dancer who acted like she played the violin ^^’ Just FYI, according to their official website, the singer & the pianist are married (how cute is that? :3)

  • Estonia: Elina Born & Stig Rästa – Goodbye To Yesterday

I never thought I would be really paying attention to this country’s entry but this song is great! Their musical style reminded me of my favorite band back in Indonesia – Naif, and also of Kings of Convenience (I don’t know if that’s correct, though). Nothing more I could say about this song, but this is another song I can fully enjoy so far 🙂

  • Greece: Maria Elena Kyriakou – One Last Breath

I had been hesitating to write about this, actually because I know my view will be heavily biased ^^’ and so I didn’t include this entry when I first published this. And like the Slovenian’s entry, when I first listened to this song, I was like… :/ It’s supposed to be a sad song, but this song can’t immediately tear my heart apart ❤ I need to listen really carefully and relate to some sad moments in my life (i.e. when I’m learning statistics, which makes me want to beg anyone to take me out of the fiery hell of statistics) to finally appreciate this song. Well, honestly, what I like from this entry is not the song per se, but rather the singer herself. I admire her. She has beautiful voice and impressive track records behind (check her Spotify also!). So, anyway. She’s on my list as well. (I told you this one would be heavily biased! 😛 )

So… here’s my list! What’s your favorites for Eurovision 2015? 😉

P.S. Sweden has finally chosen its entry for Eurovision 2015 when I updated this post! Perhaps I’m gonna write about it in the other post! 😉