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September 2014
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November 2014

Shoe Unboxing!

So, I went a bit nuts lately and bought a bunch of shoes from Originally there was just one pair I was going to buy, but then I found another, and another, and pretty soon, I'd purchased four pair of shoes!! Granted I could've bought TONS more, but I held back. Just a little.

Anyway, here's what I got:

This first pair is just a simple pair of black suede, open-sided, pointy-toed flats by Breckelle's which will be perfect for work. In fact, I've already worn these once, and they were quite comfortable and looked great with my black cigarette pants and peplum top! If you've shopped ModCloth before you know they give their items cute, fun, quirky names. These shoes are called  Navigating the Neighbourhood.




The next pair of shoes are from Jeffrey Campbell (so it says on the inside of the shoe) but came in this super girly decorated box. Even the inside of the box was decorated with little smiling, prancing unicorns as well as a letter from Chloe. I'm not sure who Chloe is, or if she works for Jeffrey Campbell, but who cares, whatever, check out the shoes: THEY LOOK LIKE PENCILS!!! Sorry to be all shouty, but OMG, totes adorbs! They're even called Pencil Me In!





Next is a pair of black flats with Sugar Skulls which will be perfect for Halloween, but I plan to wear them periodically even afterwards. (Maybe. Perhaps I'll store them and just wear them once or twice a year like I do my Christmas shoes! More room in my closet for another pair of shoes!!) These are from T.U.K. and are called Skull Pride. I wore these to work once already as well, and they were quite comfy and looked super cute with a maxi skirt!




And, finally, the shoes that started it all: Edgy Yet Adorable. (Why they don't have a better name, I'll never know, because seriously if you browse the shoes (or anything) at ModCloth, most of the names are super cute and/or fun, and I just don't think the name matches the shoes.) These funky black Mary Janes are by Anarchic by T.U.K. and I cannot wait to wear them! They were actually out of stock the first time I saw them on the website, but I put my name on the waiting list, and just a couple weeks later, they were available. I mention that becasue I see they're out of stock again, but don't dispair! They might be able to get a pair for you if you really want them! (And I know you do!)





And here they are all in a row! Just for reference, all the shoes are a size 10 regular. I can sometimes get away with a 9.5 if it's a wide width, but a) most of these didn't come in half sizes, and b) I didn't want to buy two pair of the same shoe to try on and then have to send one back. The box was already ginormous!


I hope you enjoyed my shoe haul, and I hope you'll visit yourself to hunt down some fun, funky, unique items for yourself! Stay tuned for a new Ulta haul coming soon! Cheers!

Two-fer Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

•Grab your current read
•Open to a random page
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
•BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
•Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


 Last month during the Central Coast Writer's Conference I picked up a couple books by Anne Perry (our keynote speaker): The Cater Street Hangman - the first Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novel - and The Face of a Stranger - the first William Monk novel. I've never really been a fan of mysteries, but I've really enjoyed these two books, and might consider trying another mystery book or series in the future.

I finished The Cater Street Hangman some time ago, but never got around to teasing it, so I'm sharing it now along with teasers from The Face of a Stranger. Here are my teasers from page 156 of The Cater Street Hangman:

The wretched policeman returned the following day, questioning Maddock first, then Caroline, then finally asking if he could see Charlotte again.

"Why?" Charlotte was tired and this morning the deep unhappiness of hear and the reality of death had settled upon her. The blindness of the first shock had passed. She had gone to sleep on tragedy, and wakened to find it still with her.




I'm currently about halfway through The Face of a Stranger, and am enjoying it just as much as the previous Anne Perry book I read. She has really engaging characters, interesting stories and compelling mysteries that are fun to try to solve on my own! Here's my teaser from pages 86 and 87:

Monk accepted and questioned her gently, not because he expected to learn a great deal from her directly, but because indirectly he watched her, listening to the intonations of her voice, and the fingers turning in her lap. 

Slowly he discovered a picture of Joscelin Grey. 

Have a great Tuesday! Cheers!

Another Week with Only a Friday Five

It's with great, and  ginormous apologies that I admit I had another bad blogging week! I didn't even get my Teaser Tuesday done, and I've now got TWO great Anne Perry novels to tease. I'll get right on that. Yeah.

Anyway, here's five random thingies for this week. Enjoy!

1. Today is October 24th. Just one week from Halloween, and the time change. It's autumn. The leaves are changing, the air is crisp in the morning (but it's still hot in the afternoon, go figure!), and guess what I get to do this weekend? Mow my lawn. Yeah. My lawn is still growing enough to where I have to mow it every other week or so. Gah! Wouldn't be so bad, but it's too dark to do it at night after work, so I have to spend precious weekend time to do it. Boo.

2.  Last weekend I took photos of my super awesome, newly purchased shoes for a shoe unboxing post, and just haven't got around to posting it yet, but I promise, I SWEAR, I will get around to it. Very soon. Because seriously, I bought some super cute shoes!

3.  Recently I was contacted by style website Rue La La to do a What's in My Bag post, which I know I just did not that long ago, but it's fall now, and I'll be switching out my bag(s), so I think I will write up a really great, interesting, and fun post about what I have in my purse(s)/handbag(s)/tote(s). Coming soon!

4. Next month I'll be redoing my bedroom over the Thanksgiving weekend, and I now have my wall colours down to eight. Not bad considering I had something in the neighbourhood of 12 to start with! I've been taking stuff down, patching holes, and trying to decide what will be coming back, and what will not. It's hard, but I have found some pretty cool stuff recently, so I think it might be time to switch out!

5. And, finally, the tap dancing class I'm taking on Wednesdays is going really well, even though I'm not at all good at it. It's still a lot fun, as well as a great work out! The instructor is really nice and talented, no one is snotty or judgmental, and there are all levels of ability, so I don't feel too bad about sucking at it!

Have a great weekend! Cheers!

Friday Five

Wow, I've really been slacking on the blogging front, haven't I? My apologies, but I've been inSANEly busy lately. No, really, I have! Check it out:

1. So, after cleaning out my closet recently (which in itself, took some time!), I found a LOT of stuff to put for sale on eBay. That requires photographing the item, writing up a description, and in some cases doing measurements (skirt and pant lengths, sleeve lengths, waist widths, etc.), which admittedly I slacked on this past weekend, because there was SO much to put on, and it was literally taking HOURS, and I just wanted to watch FOOTBALL, DAMMIT. Over the past three weekends, I've added 23 items, and ended up selling 13, which is super exciting, but is also a lot of work: I have to pack the sold item (which sometimes requires running to Staples to buy a box and packing tape), print out the packing slip and shipping label, and run it to the post office, and depending on how big the box is, I might have to wait till Saturday when it's actually open. Phew! Anyway, I think I'm done putting stuff on eBay except for some old carousel horses, but I believe I already have photos and write-ups from the last time I had them online.

2. I went a bit nuts shopping on line the past few weeks as well, so there was a lot of time spent opening boxes, trying stuff on, and packing up and returning the stuff that didn't fit, or just didn't look as good IRL as it did online. (Sadly there was a LOT more of the latter, which makes me kinda cranky!) I'm planning to do a blog post with all the fun new outfits I've purchased recently, but with the exception of a bunch of shoes I just received recently, I already tossed the boxes the stuff came in (or used them to send the unwanted, not-as-nice-as-it-looked-on-the-website stuff back), so it won't be a true "unboxing" post, just a "here's what I bought" post.

3. I am planning to remodel my bedroom a bit, and by "a bit" I mean slap on a new coat of paint, switch out some pictures/stuff I've had on my wall for YEARS, and welcome a new addition: a lovely mid-century modern nightstand that exactly matches the bedroom furniture I have now. Anyway, I've been taking stuff off the walls and out of the nighstands I currently have in preparation, and dumping a lot of stuff I don't plan to bring back. I also picked up a bunch of paint swatches at Home Depot and tacked them to the wall with blue painter's tape so I could look at them at various times of the day and night, and in natural and artificial light. Who knew there could be so many different shades of grey? (no pun intended)

4. Work. 'Nuff said.

5. And finally there's been a lot of yard work going on - lawn mowing and trimming, leaf raking and blowing, and adding rocks to the top of our dry creek bed in the hopes of preventing too many leaves and too much dirt getting in the creek and clogging the drain - and this weekend is no exception. We're planning to cut back the bunch grasses and trim the rosemary in preparation for what we hope will be a very wet winter!

Have a great weekend, everyone! Cheers!

TGIF + 3-Day Weekend = AWESOME!

Boy howdy, am I glad it's Friday! This week went by lightning fast, and I'm happy to say it wasn't horrible, but, still, Friday is always a darn good day! Here are five random things about this past week. Enjoy!

1.  I saw Gone Girl last night and must say I thought it was really, really good! I read the book, I think last year, so I honestly don't remember it too well, but I think the movie followed the book pretty closely to what I remember. Also, I saw it in the VIP theater where one can imbibe a nice glass of wine to go with the popcorn - J. Dusi Pinot Grigio, for those who wonder and care - so that upped the enjoyment factor.

2. The tap dancing class I'm taking was cancelled this week because apparently we wrecked the floor last week! Yikes! While the cancellation was disappointing, what's worse is that Ashleigh sent out an email Tuesday alerting everyone to the cancellation, but since I don't read my emails but two or three times a week, I didn't get it. And showed up. D'oh! Also annoying about that is that if I'd been reading my emails, I would've known soon enough that I could've contacted my trainer and worked out at Kennedy on Wednesday! (That's our usual day, but since I'm taking tap, I'm not going to Kennedy right now.) The moral of this story, I guess, is that I need to start checking my emails every day!

3.  It's been a couple days since we've seen any ants in the kitchen, so hopefully, fingers crossed, I'll be able to do some cooking this weekend! We've been doing a lot of take-out, deli, and microwave-in-the-bag stuff with salads, and I'm ready for something fresh! Unfortunately my favourite cooking magazine, Clean Eating, has, of late, been filled with a lot of difficult recipes, and I've only found one maybe two per issue that I could even consider trying. So many of the recipes have odd ingredients that I can't even find at Von's, let alone the Grocery Outlet, or they feature really expensive ingredients like steak and lobster. I may go back and check out some older issues, or just go with one of my all-time fave cookbooks, Eating for Life by Bill Phillips. Those recipes are pretty straightforward, and have easy-to-find and usually inexpensive ingredients.

4.  I just realized I've completely forgotten I was participating in FMS' Photo a Day this month! I'm WAY behind, but hope to catch up this weekend!

5. Finally, I'm very excited that Monday is a holiday, and I have the day off work. Especially since today was NUTS! I'll probably need to do some work at home rather than go play somewhere (OMG, Cambria, I miiiisssss you!), but still, whatever it is, I can do it in comfy clothes, no make-up, and my hair up in a bun!

October 2014 Resolutions

Super late with this, I know, but whatever, here's a few resolutions I'm hoping to accomplish this month:

1.  Drink more tea. I know that tea is wonderfully beneficial to a person, and I have a lot of it both at home and at work, but I always seem to lean towards coffee not jsut in the morning, but all day long. I think I'll need to once again stop buying the Starbucks Via for work, and just use the Green Tea, Earl Grey Tea, and PG Tips Tea I have in my drawer.

2.  Start eating hard cooked eggs in the morning. I used to have a hard cooked egg with my protein shake in the morning, but then got out of the habit. I need to start doing this again, becasue I get to work and I'm starving within an hour and a half! The egg seemed to help me feel fuller longer, and therefore helped me battle the usually unhealthy (but delicious!) snacks that show up unexpectedly at work. And there's really no excuse, when you can find them already cooked AND peeled!

3. Start stamping Christmas Cards. Hopping on the back of my Christmas Card Prepping at the end of last month, I'm hoping to get a good start on my festive holiday cards so I can get them off early enough in December that everyone will be able to enjoy them beFORE we celebrate the birth of our Saviour!

4. Train harder for 5k. I'm signed up for the Pacific Grove 5k, and I would really like to run at least 1 mile of it. I know I can't possibly run the entire 3.1 miles, but if I could do 1, that would be awesome! Maybe I'll run a full 5k next year! I still have hope that I'll be feeling better (if not toally cured!!) by then!

5. NaNoWriMo Prep. I'm planning to take a cue from Anne Perry and start a detailed outline of my novel. I know some of it's already written, but I can still outline and detail the bits I've been having trouble with. Maybe it'll even help me figure out how to get from point G to point H! (You know because I've got my A and Z down!)

6.  Dance more! So. I signed up for Beginning Tap and Beginning Hip Hop classes beginning this month. Yes, I am apparently insane. (!!)

Do you have any resolutions for the month? Let me know, and maybe we can support/encourage/pester each other about it! Cheers!

A Few of My Favouirte Things: September 2014

Oh, hello, October, where did YOU come from?!?

There's not much to post this time, as September just flew by and I'm sure I lost a week somewhere, but here are a few of my favourite things from the ninth month of the year:

Inspiration: The Central Coast Writers' Conference! Awesome as always, I'm SO glad I talked myself into attending (I almost didn't go this year!)! Our Keynote speaker, Anne Perry, couldn't make it in person, but through the power of modern technology, she was able to be with us over Skype! I took her Backstory class, and got some great tips I'm looking forward to including in my novel. I also took a class on world building and poetry writing, both of which I believe will come in handy as well!

Vacation: My mom and I used the Writers' Conference as an excuse to spend a long weekend in Morro Bay. Although we'd just been there in May, it was still fun and relaxing, and we basically spent a lot of time just sitting on the balcony drinking coffee and tea and enjoying the view of Morro Rock. As usual we stayed at the La Serena Inn, because they give me a great deal for attending the conference, and it was really nice despite the cable being wonky (I think the remote was broke!), and the pilot light having to be on in the gas fireplace all the time, which I believe would cause seizures in sensitive folks with the little flickering light bouncing off the ceiling all night. Gah! Anyway, instead of browsing the shops on the Embarcadero (as we'd just done that in May), we wandered around the antique malls, thrift shops, and used book stores in the downtown area. It was great fun because I didn't even know these stores existed! This one little bead shop? Had a delightful secret garden in the back! There are things I may be going back for!

Cosmetics: So, I started using the Josie Maran Black Oil Argan Oil mascara I bought at Sephora a while ago, and quite like it. I have to top it with Bare Minerals' Locked and Coated waterproof top coat, because it's not waterproof on its own, but so far that hasn't affected the performance. I tried to take some pictures, but can't really get close enough to show how the mascara looks on my lashes without showing off my horrible dark circles and wrinkes around my eyes, so, sorry 'bout that! I also started using Origins Gin-Zing eye cream and face cream, and while I'm not sure they're doing exactly what they advertised (brightening and de-puffing), I do like the smell, they feel good on my skin, and they're certainly not doing any damage!

Fragrance:  Despite purchasing a new fragrance not too long ago, I ended up using Geurlian's Le Petite Robe Noir (Little Black Dress) most of September. Something about it being dark when I get up in the morning, and the black-to-dusty-purple-to-pink on the bottle just kinda felt right together, I guess. Also, it smells nice, and tends to last a long time.

Also: Ulta Beauty opened in the Target Shopping Center in Paso!!! Yay!!

Books: I read the most delightful middle grade book in September: The Riverman by Aaron Starmer . I really loved  The Other Ones, his previous book, and am looking forward to reading  The Whisper (The Riverman book 2) when it's released next March 17th. Also, I started my first ever Anne Perry book, The Cantor Street Hangman, and I'm loving it! She's truly an amazing writer!

TV:  With the start of the new TV season, I've found a few new shows that I'm loving so far including Forever, GothamZ Nation, and Selfie. Also, I'm enjoying the return of Marvel Agents of Sheild and Sleepy Hollow, and might actually watch Survivor and The Amazing Race this season since it appears neither of those shows are including any hideous Big Brother contestants or returning players.

Food: My favourite thing foodie-wise this month was the delicious creme brulee I had at Dorn's restraunt in Morro Bay. SO amazing and decedent!

Well, that's really about it. I'm going to try to keep better track of my faves in October, so stay tuned for what I hope will be an awesome post about some of my favourite things!