2012: pretty good year

One thing I truly love about blogging (aside from "meeting" new people and, of course, being able to unabashedly indulge in my own vanity) is being able to keep track of what I've done. Although what I put online is only a very small part of my life, it's still great to be able to look back on old posts and go "oh yeah, that's what I did in March!" and "oh yeah, that's what I wore when I was doing that!"

This was my 2012:

  • I changed jobs at work, sort of against my will, and I was crushed when my previous boss (whom I loved working for) was laid off after 17 years with the company.
  • I spent a few months of year taking care of myself really well, and the rest of the time kinda not caring that much.
  • I spent a lot of time eating. If I wasn’t eating, I was thinking about food.
  • I wore a lot of teal.
  • I took a lot of pictures and became a little obsessed with PicFrame. With the much better camera on my new iPhone 5, I don’t think that’s going to change.
stupidly picturesque at the Distillery District  
  • I didn’t quite accomplish my resolution to buy only one item per month, but I definitely shopped less and more mindfully. To be continued in 2013.
  • In the same vein, I shopped much less at Anthropologie because I just didn’t like what they were offering this year. And if I don’t like it, I don’t buy it. (Or I like it at first, then change my mind and return it. Happened with a few things.)
  • I gave in and bought one of those knock-off J.Crew necklaces, and wore it a lot. And then some more.


I’m not sure this was a very life-changing year for me, but it was still a pretty good year. The perfectionist in me thinks that I could have done better, but the part of me that’s learning to relax and just live is happy with how things turned out. I spent the year having fun, doing things that make me happy, and in the company of friends and family I love, so how can I complain.

Predictably, Will and I are celebrating New Year’s Eve at home, with a good meal (prime rib roast, yum!) and a movie. And as usual, I’d like to wish everyone a Happy New Year, all the best in 2013, and thanks for reading!



Best of 2012: outfits

This year, I didn't blog quite as much as I have in previous years. I didn't do a 30 for 30, and I didn't shop as much, which meant fewer new outfits to photograph. And obviously, more repeats. But I always find these retrospectives fun, to remember what I wore and even what was happening while I was wearing them.

Also, nothing particularly trendy in any of these photos, just pieces I love, and pieces I’ve worn for many years.

January February


December in pictures

December has definitely been a month of pictures. I blame iPhone 5. Also, I’m photo-happy.

in the window at Gap Kids // in the window at Holt Renfrew// snowman window display // puppy book // Basset hound puppies // Mr. Men books in Icelandic // Lucy the shy Vizsla // my friend’s two-year-old under an umbrella and wearing a tea towel // my feet at work

disco ball at karaoke // bubble necklaces // my friend’s two-year-old in a Santa hat // the CN tower in Christmas colours // candy cane CN tower // my feet in Miz Mooz boots at work // upward facing frog statue // the frog’s muscle definition is a little alarming // reindeer sugar cookie

it’s not Christmas without Charlie Brown // mini replica of Charlie' Brown’s tree // snow in Toronto – wut?? // goat’s cheese and dark chocolate truffles from Nadège, unfortunately not that great // snowy barrels at the Distillery District // intense single-shot hot chocolate from Soma // Priest Burger from Burger’s Priest (cheeseburger with a deep-fried breaded portobello mushroom stuffed with cheese) // Les Misérables the movie for the second time (and not the last time)** // Soma gingerbread toffee which I had for dinner last night

(**I’m an unapologetic musical theatre fan, at one point 15 years ago I was taking singing lessons and considering the musical theatre degree at the University of Windsor (obviously didn’t happen and I’ve moved on, but sometimes I wonder, what if?) Les Misérables is my favourite. I’ve seen it probably about 10 times, in New York, London, Toronto. I’ve seen the original Éponine at the Palace Theatre in London in 1996, the original Jean Valjean on stage in Toronto, the original French Valjean in the Broadway 10th Anniversary cast, and I saw Samantha Barks in London two years ago (she’s also amazing here in the 25th Anniversary Concert at the O2). I love the movie, despite Russell Crowe’s singing. I’m also laughing at the film critics who complain about it being totally overwrought, over-emotional, over-the-top, and emotionally manipulative, cuz dude, have you seen the stage show? That’s what it’s supposed to be.)

There aren’t enough days left in 2012 and still so much to recap! I’ll be back later today with my favourite outfits of 2012.


As December and 2012 wind down…

Club Monaco scarf // Soïa & Kyo wool coat // Marc by Marc Jacobs Hillier Hobo

The week between Christmas and New Year is weird. A little depressing and anti-climactic? Check. A little ill from all the gluttonous indulging? Check. Shopped out and apathetic towards any post-Christmas deals? Check. Working because I want to save my vacation days for next year but not motivated to do anything in a dead quiet office? Check and check!

I’m enjoying being off diet and eating (almost) everything I want, but at the same time I’m looking forward to the end of the indulgence period. I’m generally anti-cleanse, but right now I’m actually thinking that nothing but juice and vegetables would be great.

momofuku daishō is to blame for that:

Fried chicken

Citrus dessert – lemon curd, compressed pear slices, burnt lemon ice cream, lemon verbena yogurt, something with olives, meringues, and dried lemon peel chips

I feel like I never want to eat again, but tomorrow it’s more indulging with Soma chocolate and Burger's Priest and seeing Les Miserables again, because stuffing ourselves and then sitting for a 2-1/2 hour movie makes perfect sense. 


Throw your arms around the world at Christmastime

It’s not Christmas without a little Band Aid.

This year, Christmas for me meant two tiny trees with just lights (because I never got around to putting up the little baubles):


And it also meant indulging and hanging out with dogs.

Chocolate truffle towers at Stubbe // a friendly Basset hound on the street // I love stores with dogs // Skor gelato // salted caramel ice cream // white chocolate cranberry ginger cookies // David Leite’s 36-hour chocolate chip cookies, done gluten-free // Abby the Basset begging for food // Christmas lunch (roast goose, homemade sweet potato fries, Brussels sprouts) 

Now I feel a little ill from all the indulging, but I’m heading out to Scarborough for leftover brisket with my friend’s family (her Chinese family did their own spin on the old tradition with Jewish food on Christmas day), even if I could probably stand to go vegetarian for a day. I got some lovely presents and I think I’m sitting out Boxing Day this year, but I hope there are plenty of deals out there for those who aren’t.



Tis the season for indulging, of course. Work potluck and an entire table full of desserts last week. Lemon loaf and orange loaf baked by a coworker sitting on my desk (since more people walk by my desk). A giant bag of Lindor truffles delivered to me as a gift from the B.C. office.

The thing is though, I’ve been on a diet lifestyle change since right before Halloween. I’ve decided to go back to eating better and cut out gluten, dairy, and refined sugar from my diet. No more ice cream, no more sweets. I had the shakes for the first few days, but almost two months later it really is a lifestyle change. Overall, I feel better, and I’ve dropped at least 5 pounds, which my boss says is like losing 15 at this time of year. I am planning to indulge over Christmas (salted caramel ice cream, Skor gelato, homemade chocolate chip cookies…), but for now I’m being good. Even in the face of so many treats.

So I survived all that, but Williams Sonoma almost undid it all:

candy canes // candy balls / handmade peppermint snow // Bouchon Bakery gluten-free chocolate chunk cookie mix ($30!!) // ad hoc gluten-free red velvet cake mix // chocolate frosting (I kinda wanted to eat it straight out of the jar)

I only went in to look at kitchen gadgets and Le Creusets but the food section completely distracted me. There were also samples of their peppermint bark and s’mores all over the store. Serious temptation. But I didn’t give in, so yay me. Sugar-free until Saturday! (And then it’s no holds barred.)

Also a source of serious temptation: J.Crew. Every day/week there’s some kind of promotion and free shipping. I’m very tempted by the No. 2 Pencil Skirt in Vivid Jade (darker than Retro Jade, but more teal than the product shot shows), but I’ve been a little gunshy about J.Crew lately because I just find the quality of their clothes and accessories pretty terrible (especially for the prices). But let’s face it, I’ll cave. The current promo is 30% off and free shipping on $100, do I cave tonight or hold out for a little more?

Speaking of J.Crew…the bubble necklace (even if it is a knockoff) strikes again.

J.Crew perfect-fit V-neck tee in heather graphite // Anthro cardigan // knockoff bubble necklace in teal // Club Monaco pencil skirt // Wolford velvet de luxe 66 tights // Michael Kors heels


Too many shades of grey

Probably not my best idea to stand in front of grey curtains next to a silver subwoofer wearing a grey top and grey tights. It may be too much grey.

Anthro Puckered Placket Top (Deletta) // Banana Republic pencil skirt // Wolford Satin Opaque Tights in Anthracite // Michael Kors heels

I bought this top late last month and wore it for the first time yesterday. But by the end of the day a portion of the hem had unravelled. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that a top costing over CAD$70 would last through one wear, so I returned it today. I could have fixed it myself, but I decided it wasn't worth it.

Note: I've never read 50 Shades of Grey, nor do I plan to. Actually, that's a lie. I have read two pages over the shoulder of a girl on the subway and my only thoughts were "this is terrible," and "this is so not appropriate to read on the subway." Also, since I haven't read it, I probably have no business mocking it. So maybe I should read it so my snarking on it is actually informed.

Second note: I could probably stand to read 50 Shades of Grey instead of reading the news and reading another story about children being killed in Newtown, Connecticut. It truly breaks my heart and I’ve spent more times in tears over the news in the past few days than I think I ever have. I’m not really good at this kind of thing (I’m fine at being snarky and jokey and irreverent, but when it comes to the serious stuff I’m lost), so I’m trying to find ways to deal with it. And hoping I don’t come across as too flippant.


24 hours

I’ve had a strange and eventful 24 hours:

  • I had a lovely dinner with a friend last night at Tabule, a middle Eastern restaurant that is now serving gluten-free flatbread (fantastic!).
  • 20 minutes later, I was hit with an allergic reaction or food poisoning or a stomach bug hit me and I had to throw up in a Starbucks bathroom. (I’m thinking stomach bug because I’m not feeling right today.)
  • Right after that, I had a peppermint tea and decided I felt fine, so we continued walking downtown towards our destination (karaoke), but before we got there we encountered an escape-artist 60-lb Basset Hound running across Yonge St in Rosedale.
  • It took both of us to wrestle him down to read his tags (Bassets are so stubborn!), and he was so determined that I couldn’t hold him down. I had to let go and spent the next ten minutes running after him yelling “No doggie, don’t go into the street again!” (At least Bassets don’t run very fast.) We couldn’t even tempt him with homemade cranberry almond biscotti. What kind of dog was he? My parents’ Basset would have been all over it.
  • One of the tags had his address, which was right nearby, so we took him back to his rich hipster doofus owner who seemed really annoyed and put out that we were bothering him (dude, your dog ran away and almost got run over, show a little more gratitude).
  • After that, we went to karaoke as planned where I murdered “Set Fire to the Rain” (apparently throwing up did a number on my karaoke-ing ability), but did a fine job with “Do They Know It’s Christmas.”
  • I got home pretty early (before midnight) and found Will suffering from the same stomach bug.
  • I slept badly, but I woke up feeling ok so I went to check out the 30% off sweater sale at Anthro. Didn’t buy anything, but took a lot of pictures. That’s probably the least strange thing that happened in the past 24 hours.




So many pretty party dresses, and the only thing I try on is a striped T-shirt, which I didn’t buy anyway. But I have no holiday parties to go to. If I did, I would totally buy that fur-collared cardigantulle dress, and metallic tulle skirt.


This week’s outfits

The camera on iPhone 5 is about a million times better than the one on the 3GS, so snapping an outfit photo in the mirror before I leave for work is quick and easy.

Club Monaco top and skirt // Anthropologie necklace // Wolford Velvet Opaque tights // Tory Burch Reva flats // Anthro Cream Confection Jacket (Cartonnier)

Anthro Tartlet Burst Top (Deletta) // J.Crew long merino wool cardigan // Club Monaco pencil skirt // Wolford satin opaque tights // Michael Kors heels

Anthro Volante Tee (Deletta – 2010) // Club Monaco pencil skirt // Wolford satin opaque tights // Michael Kors heels

Club Monaco Faye top // Hilary Druxman necklace // Anthro Alluring Sway Skirt (Cartonnier) // Wolford Satin Opaque tights in Admiral (navy) // Nine West nude heels

J.Crew Vintage Tee in heather graphite // knockoff J.Crew bubble necklace // Mexx cardigan // lululemon leggings // Miz Mooz Gayle boots

I don’t think I’ve documented a week’s worth of outfits since the last time I did 30 for 30 so it’s kinda interesting (if only for me), even if it’s only mirror photos (and some blurry ones at that).

The iPhone will never replace a real camera, but sometimes, it’s just easier.


Another first-world problem

Yesterday, Will and I upgraded from our iPhone 3GSes to iPhone 5s. So pretty! So light! (Also, good effort Apple in trying to improve the headphones, but still no match for the Bose MIE2i mobile headset.) I had my 3GS for three years so I plan to keep the 5 for as long, so I need to protect it. My dilemma is which case do I get?

Teal retro vintage camera // Colors 201 // London - Red Telephone Box // Polka Rain

I love all these fun designs. I’m leaning a little bit towards the London telephone box, but the Polka Rain is up my alley as well.

Or I could go with simple and practical in my favourite colour:

J.Crew leather in turquoise

If I could, I’d get all of them, but I can’t. It’s a decision that has the potential of keeping me up at night.

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