Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Ottawa Fringe Festival Starts Tomorrow!

Hi my lovely!

Just a quick note to remind you that Ottawa Fringe Festival is starting tomorrow! This is your chance to get out to see a whole mess of new and interesting theatre at low, low prices!

I'm going to the Fringe opening night party tonight, expect to see lots of fabulous pictures in the coming days!


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Bippy Love: Too Faced Carribean In a Compact

I am a pale, pale girl. Evidence of this can be seen here. I'm not as porcelain-skinned as I was in my early 20s, perhaps, but still I'm rather pale. I work hard to maintain my pallor (sunscreen, hello!), but from time to time, yes, I do want some colour.

If you looked back into my past, specifically at the many, many bronzers I've tried, I'm sure you'd be amazed that so many even exist! While I was working as a makeup artist, I had the luxury of trying out not only consumer products, but professional products as well (not to mention getting to try stuff in other pros' kits when we were working together). I never found something that wasn't either orange or far too dark, regardless of how gentle a hand applied it.

Then I stumbled upon Too Faced Cosmetics' Caribbean In a Compact. I was immediately drawn to the name of the colour: Snow Bunny. To me, that conjured up images of raven-haired European beauties whooshing down the Alps in white ski suits and fabulous furry hats! And even though I don't ski, or have raven hair, or have ever been to Switzerland, I definitely thought that was a look I wanted to incorporate into my life.

I like to call Snow Bunny my unbronzer. It doesn't make me look tanned, it certainly doesn't make me look orange; it just gives me the perfect shimmery and sunkissed glow.

The compact contains four bands of colour that you blend together with a brush (I like to use a kabuki brush for superior blending). Champagne, bronze, pink and the palest peach all have a subtle shimmer and make my skin look flawless.

This is my go-to for summer. If you're a pale girl like me, get yourself to Sephora to pick some up, or you can just order it online right here.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Blog Out Loud

Happy Monday! I hope you had a fantastic, relaxing and productive weekend!

I went to see Daniel McIvor's This Is What Happens Next at the GCTC on Friday, had a spray paint date with my BFF (and champagne!) on Saturday, and made crafts with my man-friend on Sunday. But now it's back to the work week, out of weekend mode, and into awesome!

Here's a question: have you heard of Blog Out Loud Ottawa (aka BOLO)? It's an evening of readings by bloggers, and this is the third year that it's happening.

And you guys, I've been selected to read!
I am so excited and nervous! I would love to see you there! If you're in Ottawa, please come! Here are the deets!

What: Blog Out Loud Ottawa 2011
Where: The Prescott, 379 Preston Street
When: Thursday, July 7th, 7pm
How much: This is a FREE EVENT
Why: To hear some readings from some awesome local bloggers!

Not all the bloggers have been announced yet, but I am excited to hear the ones who have been!

Hope to see you there!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Lunchtime Lookup - June 10th, 2011

Photo by artnoose.
Hi friend! It's been a fun week on the internet! Here's a roundup of links for you, to entertain you on a Friday!

I'm trying out a new format for these Lunchtime Lookups; I'm going to organize them in the same way I organize my to-do lists, notes to myself, and more!

To feed your brain: 

To put on your body:

To put in your home:

To put in your munching cave:

To have fun:


I know some of these people! Nifty!

Pretty. Disturbing.

Vegan. Black. Metal. Chef.

PYGMY SEAHORSES. Yessssssssssssssssssss.

Yup. This is what my brain is like. All the time.

Oh Mike Dooley. Love++.

Maria Bamford is my favourite.

That's it, that's all! Have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Little Bit of Heaven - June 9th, 2011

Image by Crystal Writer.
Hello my happy little hooligan! I hope that you have had an amazing week so far, and that you’re ready for a great big wonderful love list of amazing! Here we go!

More love in my life than I ever thought possible: I have a man-friend who trusts me, the two best friends I could wish for, and another circle of friends I know I can count on to be awesome! My female friendships are competition-free, which is totally amazing! My love for people is exploding faster and shinier than it ever has before. I am all a-twitter and a-glitter!

Emotional balance: I feel like I’ve finally gotten to an emotional place where my head screwed on straight enough that I can provide emotional support to those who need it. It makes me so happy to be able to be that friend and lover that I always knew I could be.

YOU GUYS my man friend can DO MAGIC WITH CARDS. This is incredible!

Summer: It’s here in all its glory! There’s amazing weather, all the bike rides, hot days, rainstorms, HAIL. What’s not to love about it? Summer is my favourite season, no question! I’ve been seeing flowers every single day! Some of them match my hair!

Shopping with J’aime Jaime: We got her all kitted out at Value Village for summer awesome goodness. Plus an autumn dress that almost made me not want to be friends with her anymore because she looked so good in it.

Co-hosting a yard sale with three of my favourite people. We sold some stuff, but more importantly we got to sit in the sun and play cards all afternoon, and get rid of a bunch of our unwanted things without having them go into a landfill. Plus afterwards I biked around my neighbourhood and found an old typewriter from another yard sale that was left at the curb! And a chandelier for my bedroom!

Dancing at weddings: Jeff and Lauren got married. They were lovely. Fun and dancing and drinks were had. Friends from forever ago were seen. What a time!

Giant Tiger! Their staff is adorable (Jessica, I’m looking at you, kid!). Also, I never want to spend all kinds of money on summer clothes (because I can only wear them for a couple of months), and they have crazy deals on cute things.

I finally got around to changing my wardrobe over and cleaning it out a bit! I am so lucky to have a closet full of things that I love, and I never need to worry about what to wear!

Positive response to my look: Little girls in particular love my hair (“Mummy. Mummy. Mummy. THAT LADY HAS PINK HAIR.”). Getting positive, happy words said about something that I’ve been cultivating and consciously evolving makes me want to work more on it!

Forgetting my phone at home: It’s kind of a nice feeling. I wouldn’t want to do it every day, but it’s nice to know that I can live without it.

Having a plan for decorating my bachelorette pad (tentative name: The Glitter Factory): I have been just existing in my apartment, it’s been a place to hang my hat, but my apartment is adorable and deserves a bit more of a loving touch. Plus, it’s in a neighbourhood that I love; Hintonburg has the most and the cutest puppies!

Changing my handwriting and my habits. My penmanship is getting nicer! I am making my bed every day!

Books! Currently Emma and Memories of a Catholic Girlhood by Mary McCarthy. Reading and holding hands is quickly becoming one of my favourite activities.

This blog and YOU! Without you this blog would have no point! Thank you! And thank you so much for your kind donations! I am so lucky that you like what I’m doing so much! I also love it when you leave comments, because it gives me a bit of a chance to interact with you! More like this, please!

Ottawa! This city is pretty rad! I can pretty much get whatever I need here! The people that I love are here (although we’re losing three people I really, really like this year, and that makes me sad), and it’s close enough to Toronto or Montreal so that I can go there when I need to.

Writing: I’ve been falling back in love with the process and it feels wonderful.

Making things with my hands and having partners in craft. Fun++

Pictures and pictures and pictures. Being someone’s muse is pretty much amazing and is something I have always wanted. MANIFESTED.

PUPPIES. ALWAYS. Image by trialsanderrors.
Music music music: Ani DiFranco – Napoleon; Skee-Lo – I Wish; Colin Meloy – Cupid; Aesop Rock f. John Darnielle (SWOON) – Coffee; Great Lake Swimmers – Your Rocky Spine; Iron & Wine – Carousel; The Extra Glenns – Going to Marrakesh

Honourable Mentions: Spinning in my desk chair * Calling people “nutbag” * “A MILLION WATER” * Getting whistled at by the same parrot twice in one week * Boys who give good text * “What can I put between two quarters to make it look like a roll of quarters?” “Um... 38 more quarters.” * Planning travel with my favourite people * MAKING THIS LIST * Cake pops on the Starbucks patio while I work * Sally Hansen Salon Effects - five days and still going strong! * Getting amazing things in the mail from fantastic people

My little love bundle! What about you? What do you love? What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

More Fashion, Less Victim: June 2011

Photo by roger_g1.
Just a reminder that you can read my column over at Apt613 right here!

Stay tuned for the one, the only, A Little Bit of Heaven tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Product Review: Sally Hansen Salon Effects

Image courtesy of Sally Hansen.
I am sometimes an impatient girl. Never is this more apparent than when investigating my manicure.

Chips, smudges, sheet prints (yes, I'm guilty of doing my nails right before bed), all can be spotted on my nails.

However, I picked up some of these Sally Hansen Salon Effects nail polish strips on sale the other day, and when I had a wedding to go to on Saturday (and no time to do my nails, much less let them dry), I thought I'd give them a whirl.

I got them in Bling It On, a very glittery pink (of course). The design of these is clever, with both ends being different shapes so you can choose a side based on the the shape of your cuticle (my fingers all have round cuticles, while my thumbs are square, so it was nice to have options). The strips go on smoothly, and once I figured out that you can double up the layers for extra opacity, it was fantasy home manicure city! I was done in about 20 minutes, which isn't no time at all, but I also didn't have to wait for an hour for these to be dry!

I've had them on since Saturday and they look as fresh as the day I applied them. The strips aren't cheap though, running from $8-$10 depending on where you buy them. Yes, that's right, they're more expensive than a bottle of nail polish. However, they are cheaper than a manicure.

I would say that these are an emergency solution for me, as in, "OH CRAP I have to be somewhere fancy and I have no time to do my nails!!!" I'll keep them on hand for that purpose. If they were cheaper (say, $1-$2 a pop) I'd probably use them a lot more often, but then they probably wouldn't be as good a product!

If you like your nails pretty but haven't any patience, try adding these to your arsenal!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)

Photo by pullip_junk.
I’ll be the first to admit it – I’m bad at sunscreen.

That’s not entirely true. I’m bad at putting sunscreen on my shoulders and back at least once a year, which means once a year I get more sun than I should. I’m trying to be better at this, but it’s an uphill battle!

You don’t need me to lecture you on the reasons why you should use sunscreen. But maybe you’re thinking about buying one and you want to know which one would be best for you. Well, there I can help you out. I’ve been looking into it and here’s what I found!

The Environmental Working Group has a great sunscreen guide that outlines which are the best... But here's a little round-up of the best and worst!

The Best:
  • Alba Botanical Sun Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
  • Aubrey Organics Natural Sun Sport Stick Unscented Sunscreen, SPF 30
  • Kiss My Face 100% Natural Blue Sun Stick, SPF 30
The Worst:
  • Banana Boat Sport Performance Active Max Protect, SPF 110 ("The letters SPF mean “sun protection factor” and refers only to protection against UVB radiation, which burns the skin. It has nothing to do UVA radiation that penetrates deep into the skin, accelerates skin aging and may cause skin cancer.")
  • Elizabeth Arden – Eight Hour Cream Sun Defense for Face, SPF 50 ("Even though sunscreen makers like Elizabeth Arden can add stabilizing additives to slow down the pace with which the cream breaks down in sunlight, this product simply does not last for hours and hours on the skin.")
  • Coppertone Water Babies Sunscreen Lotion SPF 70+ ("This Coppertone sunscreen is one of more than 20 sunscreens with the word “baby” in their name and the chemical oxybenzone on their ingredient lists. Don’t buy them. Plenty of safer products are available.")
Keep in mind, I'm not a health expert! I'm just passing this information along to you. When you do apply sunscreen, here's how to do it right!

Here's hoping you have a burn-free summer!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Lunchtime Lookup - June 3rd, 2011

Image by Rainbow Photos.
Hoo boy, baby, it`s a late one today! Perhaps this is a dinner-time lookup!

I spent the day thrifting and preparing for tomorrow`s yard sale - if you`re in Ottawa, come on out to Midway Avenue for their yearly neighbourhood sale! And now I`m chilling out in my best friend`s backyard, sipping sangria and providing distractions for you! All for love! Exclamation points!

The Sartorialist has young ladies on bicycles. Yes please. I hope I look this good on my bike! Also, thank you for vintage kissing in matching sweaters. All the love. All of it.

Adventures In Dressmaking has a tutorial for an adorable burlap boutonniere. I believe I know just the young man I would make this for!

Refinery29 and the YSL cigarettes.

Laura Thoughts made this brilliant magnetic makeup board. The Virgo in me is squealing over this kind of storage awesomeness!

Just Something I Made has this awesome expanding file with a vintage book cover. It looks way too labour-intensive for me, but pretty.

Chocolate On My Cranium has a tutorial on how to pretty-up your pens. Dead simple!

Sarah Wilson in defense of the hipster. Yes. I own it. To the same end, Flavorwire's In Defense of Twee.

I don't know if Angela at Oh She Glows is a genius or what, but her recipes never cease to amaze. Gazpacho? I want to go to there. All summer. Also, on my to-do list this week was "make kale chips", so I think I'll be using her recipe for sour cream and onion ones!

Dear See Kate Sew, why is this vintage suitcase chair the cutest thing I've ever seen?!

CRAFT has a how-to for a peg board made with toy animal heads - it's like teeny tiny taxidermy! Love+++!

They also show off this room divider made from old paperbacks, and it makes me think I could DIY this rather simply! And a necklace made out of bubble wrap? What!?

Babble, why do you hate me? Deep fried strawberries, indeed.

Thanks, JRD Skinner!


Chris Tse is an Ottawa lad who is currently competing in Paris at the
International Poetry Slam Championships, representing Canada.
Go Chris!

That`s it, kiddo! Enjoy your weekend! XOXO!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

A Little Bit of Heaven - June 2nd, 2011

Image by kainet.
What is up, candy cup? I hope you're having an incredible week so far!

As I write this, I'm sitting on a balcony high above the city, with the sounds of children playing in a water park drifting up to me, enjoying some lovely sunshine...

But that doesn't matter, as much as I may love it. Here's what matters: it's time for the great big, long missed Thursday love list: A Little Bit of Heaven! Here's what's been turning my crank this week!

The Canadian Museum of Nature: I got taken there on a lovely date recently, and it was super-boss-awesome-fun-time to look at dinosaurs, bugs, plants, and especially rocks!

Being physically active - specifically taking long, long weekend walks and going for bike rides all the time. I find I resent time spent at the gym (although I love going), but doing fun stuff while getting exercise is just fine by me!

To that end, private underpants dance parties! There have been so many of these in my life lately and they are absolutely amazing!

Amazing friends who pick me up from surgery. Specifically, Justin, who is awesome and took time out of his work schedule to come and get me.

Taking photos with toy film cameras, especially my Lomo! I've also been playing with a Vivitar point-and-shoot and using Vignette for my phone when I want something digital. Also, my amazing Android phone, the LG500. Love++!

Dates with myself. Last week I took myself to Fil's, drank Perrier with lemon, ate a grilled cheese on rye bread, read Emma, and listened to my favourite Beatles songs. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaamazing.

Photo by J B Hildebrand.
New vintage sunnies that I probably got gouged on but I love them so much that I don't care, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay pinker hair, and eating nectarines (which I like to call protectarines). Also of note, a polka dotted dress with pearls and wearing my non-shorn hair in a ponytail. (Since I only have hair on one side of my head and it`s crazy vibrant violet pink, I feel a bit like a My Little Pony!)

My dad and my gentleman friend have been e-mailing each other because my dad needs advice on a purchase in my friend's field, and it's been really cuting me out!

Honourable Mentions: Cinnabon surprises * Sleeping through the night * $5 food processors * Edward Scissorhands * Setting SMART goals! * Having a dream about jumping on a trampoline * OhMiBod Freestyle * Vintage jewelry picked up for a song at yard sales * Spinach + fruit in a salad * Perfect strangers telling me they love my hair * Especially when they're adorable little girls * Bonus points for being named Bella and being the sweetest girl in the world

Instead of just listing all the songs and music I've loved this week, here are some links to some YouTube clips of them! Un petit playlist, if you will!The Beta Band - Dry the Rain (seriously, kiss someone you really, really like while you're listening to this), Belle Orchestre - Throw It On a Fire (creepy video...), Frightened Rabbit - Backwards Walk, MIA - Fire Fire, Girl Talk - Let It Out, Fuad & the Feztones - Camel Walk (not the best quality, but trust me when I tell you that their record Beeramid is totally worth picking up and I crush on this band hard), oh man, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs YES STILL - Heads Will Roll and Handsome Furs - I'm Confused (the Bluesfest 2009 combo), Wax Mannequin - End of Me (one of the best shows I`ve seen in a while!), and finally, Mr. Oizo - Flat Beat!

I have no idea what this really is but I highly recommend you watch it. My
gentleman friend showed it to me on a night when we whiled away the
hours showing each other stuff we love on YouTube. This is what English
sounds like to a non-English speaker.

What about you, darling dear? What is making you happier than happy this week? What makes you feel rich? How are you loved? Tell us in the comments!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Bippy Love: PR Design

Image courtesy of PR Design.
Last weekend, after I napped to recover from the Great Glebe Garage Sale (phew!), I woke up and checked in with Twitter, and realized that ArtsPark was happening right down the street from my house!

ArtsPark is an annual event in Hintonburg, with displays of, well, art, as well as more jewelry vendors than you can shake a stick at, if that's the sort of thing you like to do to jewelry vendors.

Well, I jumped right out of bed, threw on a cute outfit, and hopped on my lovely bicycle (Eliza, don't you know) and headed over... After catching up for a moment with Krista of Urbanite Jewelry (I have an amazing pair of earrings of hers, and I love them, and I'd link to them but it's looks like she's sold out for the summer, much like her stall...), I continued around to the other vendors.

I saw some pretty things, yes, but most of them were way out of my price range for the day... Then I came upon the stall for PR Design!

You guys.

This stuff is beautiful.

I bought the necklace that matches the earrings in the photo at the top of this post. Patricia Rodi, who designs and makes the jewelry out of reclaimed materials whenever possible and strives to make them hypoallergenic, was completely sweet to boot and sent me the nicest e-mail yesterday morning, saying in part, "I just wanted to thank you for purchasing that button necklace last weekend at ArtsPark, though I don't know you it seems to fit your personality."

Isn't that just the sweetest?!

In all seriousness, I can highly recommend her jewelry. It's beautiful. And I recommend you snatch it up right now before she realizes what a beautiful thing she does and raises her prices accordingly!