Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Their Perfume, My Life

Last week I stopped a woman at an event and asked her what perfume she was wearing. I tried guessing: “Eau Du Soir by Sisley,” I ventured. “No, Aromatics Elixer by Clinique," she replied. “Everyone asks me that when I wear it.” I don’t know this woman very well, but I will always remember her by that scent.

My earliest perfume-related memories are provided by my mom. Her dressing table was always filled with several exquisite glass bottles of iconic scents: Calvin Klein Obsession, Elizabeth Taylor White Diamonds, Chanel No. 5, and Christian Dior Poison, but the scent she wore regularly, year after year, was Oscar de la Renta Oscar. I have a picture of her in my head: She’s picking me up from school wearing a fur coat in our larger-than-life Cadillac. I step into the car and it’s filled with that dewy, sweet concoction. I’m so proud to hitch a ride with my glamourous mom.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Going Gluten-Free

I’ve been on the hunt for coconut flour ever since I found out there was such a thing as coconut flour — it’s quite hard to find, especially in small quantities. So you could imagine my joy when I discovered what is destined to become my go-to source for gluten-free baking essentials: Bulk Barn.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Guilty Pleasures

Sometimes I make a discovery so epic it makes me giggle. So you’ll understand why my giggle turned into full-out laughter after I bit into my latest pastry obsession from Safeway.

It’s taken me a long time to organize my thoughts for this blog post because I want to get this description right. Imagine the lightest, flakiest croissant you’ve ever bitten into (well, maybe that’s a stretch — humour me) and the most unhealthy, sugary, glazed Krispy Kreme donut you’ve ever ingested. Now morph them into one delectable treat. Then drizzle it with chocolate. My heart races with anticipation as I write; or perhaps my arteries are clogging up. It’s exciting either way.

I’ve always believed in restraint when it comes to guilty pleasures, even though I’ve never practiced it. In fact, I relish in those simple, guilt-inducing foods, rituals and music I’ve indulged in ever since I was a kid. It’s funny, when you’re growing up in Saskatchewan, drinking instant coffee laced with Coffeemate with your grandma is a pleasure. Once you grow up and start to move in more sophisticated circles it gets demoted to a guilty pleasure. For the record, I still love instant coffee. My current fave is Nescafé 3 in 1 (which is available at my local Superstore).

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Five Things I Can't Live Without Right Now

I’m forever making up lists in my mind: top five spring fashion trends, top five hairsprays, top five moisturizers, top five fragrances... you name it, I’ve made a top five for it. So it seems perfectly natural for me to share five things I can’t live without, as of March, 2011.

My Nespresso Essenza

I love coffee. I’m proud to say it’s one of my vices. I recently told a friend that if I had $20 to my name I’d spend it on a one-week supply. At least I’d enjoy a daily moment of pleasure while I figure out how to make more money.

Admittedly, this machine is a little pricey, but it makes the most divine coffee. It’s easy to use, too. You just pop a specially designed pod (my favourite is Indriya) into the loader thingy, press a button and presto: a perfect shot of espresso topped with a rich layer of créma that will rival anything made in a fancy café. (Nothing against fancy cafés.)

Come to think of it, if I had $20 to my name I should consider selling my Nespresso machine. Never!

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Dear Calgary Weather

Dear Calgary Weather,

You’re slowly turning me into a raisin. I know it’s not your fault, per se; however, could you please back off the extremely cold temperatures? Could you also inject some moisture into the atmosphere while you’re at it? I’d be ever so grateful.

I know, I know, I was born and raised in Saskatchewan, so I should know how to deal with dry weather, but I guess my time spent out east in the sweltering humid summers (and bone-chilling damp winters) made me complacent. Remember that Vaseline Intensive Care commercial where the woman scratched the word ‘dry’ into her skin? This morning I scratched ‘help’ into mine.

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Place to Call My Own

It’s official: I have a new apartment. After months of living with benevolent friends and family while I transitioned from Toronto to Calgary, I finally have a place to call my own — which brings along a wealth of challenges and new discoveries.

Let’s start off with the challenges: my apartment is virtually empty. Some people might look at my place and think: college student. I look at it and think: blank canvas. I can feel my decorating impulses start to kick into high gear. My Toronto apartment was a continual work in progress. It was about 100 years old, so I worked with the built-in charm to created a space that was comfy and elegant (in my opinion):

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

How I fight aging — and it's not all about the product

I’m at that age when my birthday cake arrives with one candle on it as a sort of “you-know-what-we-mean” gesture. Hey, I’m always happy when cake is involved, but boy do birthdays lose their lustre past the age of 12. 

To make matters even worse, I was born in January, painfully close to Christmas. Kids don’t see the common sense in combined Christmas/birthday presents.

I’m happy to say that I had a great birthday this year. The day started out wonderfully, in fact. My mom took me to Avenue Diner for an amazing lunch — what a great spot! Then later that day my friend Natalie and I went to loungeburgerAfter dinner we decided to go see Black Swan. I sat enthralled as I watched Natalie Portman twirl, leap and go crazy right before my very eyes. Psychosis aside, she looked great in her lightweight cotton dance gear and over-the-top Rodarte tutus. I noticed that there were lots of close-ups on her face — that woman has great skin. When I got home I inspected my own face for any new signs of aging.

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