Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Saying Goodbye to October


Like every other basic b*tch out there, I love the fall (and pumpkin spice lattes). I always have low expectations for the weather in the fall, so when we get beautiful days it's always an unexpected and very welcome surprise. We had a lot of rain, but we had a lot of beautiful days too.

October is really one of the greatest months of the years, isn't it? There is so much going on. So many fun activities to enjoy. It helps that this is one of the first years in a long time where I was able to take advantage of pretty much every great October activity. I usually get a few things in, but it's always a struggle. My grandma was sick last year, so I was constantly leaving town to spend time with her, and before that school took up most of my time. But I made up for it this year.

Things I did in October
  • Got lost in a corn maze
  • Screamed in terror at Fright Nights
  • Made a pumpkin bouquet
  • Attended Friendsgiving
  • Had a family Thanksgiving
  • Didn't get scared at Gravecouver
  • Carved pumpkins with friends
  • Created an epic Halloween playlist
  • Dressed up as my long time idol, Bette Midler/Winnie Sanderson
  • Went to a costume party fundraiser
  • Attended a Halloween Party at the Commodore

I have wanted to dress up as one of the witches from Hocus Pocus since... probably since the movie first came out. It was my FAVOURITE movie when I was a kid. Couldn't get enough of Thora Birch movies (Monkey Trouble, All I Want for Christmas), and Bette Midler was my favourite singer. She was also the first concert I ever went to (right around the time that this movie came out).

My friends and I decided to bite the bullet and dress up as the Sanderson Sisters while we were waiting in line for a haunted house. It took a bit of deliberation to decide who should be who. Winnie wasn't my first choice, but I am happy with the way things ended up.

The next day I went to Value Village and found a beautiful green fabric to make my coat out of. I hand that baby from scratch. The jacket was definitely the best part of the outfit. I especially loved the sleeves that I made.

I hit up another Value Village and found an interesting blue dress that was almost perfect. I think her dress was actually purple, but it looked blue in a lot of pictures, so I wasn't too fussed that it wasn't exactly perfect. The dress was long sleeved and high necked. It was silky from the waste down. The bodice was made from the same silk fabric with a blue lace over top. The sleeves were the same silk and lace, until about halfway down the arm when they turned into lace. The dress was a bit too small for me, but it was easy enough to alter to fit.

I had to completely alter the neck line of the dress and cut the sleeves off (I wore the lace part of the sleeves as cuffs so that it wouldn't be too hot). I bought a different green fabric to use for a vest and skirt panels. I ended up sewing the extra green fabric right on to the dress.

I vest I made was pretty awesome and took a lot of time to get right. But while we were shopping for pieces for my friends costumes, one of them found a perfect green shirt that had that medieval corset look to it. It was the right shade of green and it was also my size. It was meant to be. So I had to say goodbye to the vest I had slaved over, but it was worth it.

The wig was pretty easy to alter. I made two circles out of wire and sewed the scrunched up hair to each of the wires to get it is stay in that sexy Winifred style.

I'm pretty impressed with how well my Winifred Sanderson costume turned out. It was a pretty big hit. So many people that I didn't know kept coming up to me and telling me how much they loved it/the movie.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Mascara and the Moon

  • Getting my hair did tonight. I have no idea what I'm doing. All I know is that the moon is in an appropriate phase... I'm weird about that for some reason. I think it stems back to a talk show I watched when I was a kid. 
Top: No mascara Middle: Regular Mascara Bottom: Fibre Mascara
  • I just spent $50 on mascara, which explains the creepy picture of my eyes. I'd say don't judge me, but I deserve to be judged. It's that fancy fibre stuff from Sephora. I have seen a different brand advertised for $30, but I don't know where to find it, so I just bought the Sephora kind. I haven't decided yet if it was worth it. It definitely made my lashes longer, but they are a little too clumpy. Although, they don't look as clumpy in the picture as I remembered them being. I'll call that a win.

  • There is only one week left until I leave for my European vacation. I am so excited. It is going to be so amazing. I'm going to shop till I drop and watch as many West End productions as I can... Which will probably be three (I'm going at the wrong end of the week): Matilda, Shakespeare in Love, and the Commitments.

  • I feel like a bad Canadian because I have never heard of Jian Ghomeshi or his popular show "Q" until this weekend when all of his shit the fan and he was fired over abuse allegations. Now my Facebook feed is full of never ending debates arguing his innocence/guilt. At first he had me fooled. His original Facebook post was a pretty convincing little PR trick. Now it seems pretty obvious that the allegations are legit since eight woman have come forward with similar stories. I hate situations like this. It makes me sad for everyone involved. You just never know the truth. Obviously I have an opinion (guilty), but my opinion doesn't really matter. It is interesting how many celebrities have been accused to sexual misconduct, but how few of them have actually been found guilty and prosecuted.
Joining Running with Spoons for Thinking Out Loud Thursday

Friday, 24 October 2014

Fashion Friday

I don't have a lot of outfits to show off this week. Just one actually. Life was just too busy to take pictures. It was also too busy to keep my apartment clean. No one needs to see an outfit post after a tornado has hit my room.

I ended up going on a third date! Yes, three! I found a deal through Social Shopper for a haunted house experience. I'd say it was worth what I paid for it, but I can't imagine paying full price for it. I won't be going back. My date loved it. But he also hasn't been to some of the more amazing haunted houses that the city offers.
For my casual haunted house attire I went with the above outfit. I love tunics. This tunic I got from Addition Elle last spring. It's nice and light. It actually has a slit in the back that give is a unique shape. Again, I wore my favourite military-esque sweater that was a thrift store find (it looks military-esque in real life, it just doesn't photograph that way). Jeggings and my little black boots completed the outfit.

I received an email yesterday telling me that Pennington's/Addition Elle was having a happy hour sale where you buy 2 and get 2 free off all regular priced merchandise. I have been meaning to head over there to check out their boot selection. It made perfect sense to do this during the sale.
Fortunately/unfortunately I work right next door to Addition Elle, so I just walked over after work. I tried on pretty much every pair of boots that they had. I didn't find any tall boots that I liked, but I fell in love with pretty much every pair of booties they had. I have a pair that I wear all the time, but are close to being at the end of their life. I chose the grey booties above as their replacement. It works out perfectly. This way I can take my old boots to England with me, and I don't have to worry about destroying them from all of the walking I will be doing or bringing them back if I go on a giant shopping spree.
The studded heels were a splurge. They just looks so good on my feet. They are actually slightly different than the ones pictured above, but that was the closest picture I could find. Hopefully I will be able to put them to use.

My two free items ended up being this sparkly tunic/sweater and this leopard print blouse. I am pretty happy with both items. I tried to pick expensive items to take advantage of sale properly, but I couldn't resist the blouse (which was $20 cheaper than the shoes). Oh well, I am happy with my purchases.

So much for my spending freeze.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

The Wednesday Post

I gained this week... and last. Not a lot, but enough.

It's not really a surprise. I have had an unsatisfiable hunger for the past week or two. I haven't been binging, just eating a lot. Too much.

I also haven't been working out as much as I could. Slash - I haven't been working out at all. I have three more yoga classes to take advantage of before they expire next week. I also have my jumping classes. I really don't want to go jumping again. I will go. But I don't want to. I don't want to walk into an awkward situation. I can't stand the owner of the studio.

I don't do well in negative situations. You know how people always say "What's the worst that can happen? You get yelled at?" (or some other example), It is supposed to make you feel better about the future situation. But I don't want to be yelled at. I don't want people I don't know to be mad at me. Even if I never have to see them again. I don't want that. This lady is crazy. Please refer to my crazy lady post from last week. I'm going to back... eventually.

On Sunday afternoon I cooked up all of my vegetables before they went bad. I made a gluten free lasagna type dish. I've been having that for lunch all week. It's pretty spectacular. I also made a vegetable medley of sorts that I can do different things with. Last night it was lettuce wraps. They were good, but the filling on its own is just so good. I might have to skip the lettuce tonight.

Linking up with these lovelies... Because it's Wednesday

The Hump Day Blog Hop Weigh In Wednesday
How did you do this week?

Don't forget to friend me on My Fitness Pal and Fitbit or follow me on Twitter.
<3 Less

Friday, 17 October 2014

What I Wore This Week

Here are my fashion hits (and possible misses) for the last week. I'm trying to put more effort into my appearance each day and try new looks.
Last Friday was Fright Nights with friends. I only had 10 minutes to get ready after work, so I just threw this outfit on as fast as I could before we met up for dinner. I am wearing a black skirt, but it didn't photograph very well. I wanted to give the leopard print a bit of love since I don't end up wearing it very often. It falls into this weird category of not being quite casual enough for most occasions, but not nice enough for the nights when I am going out (mostly because it doesn't have any sequins or bling on it).

Last weekend was Thanksgiving in these Northern parts. My family was away, so I got to take part in Friendsgiving this year. I was pretty excited about it since I am usually away. I make brussel sprout casserole and all of my friends brought their A-game with the rest of the food. While my casserole was cooking, I had to move quickly to get ready for the dinner. I decided on the red pants and the lace top because something about the combination said Thanksgiving to me. It was probably the fall colours and old-timey cut of the top. I also went with straight hair because it seems like forever since I have done that.

Date Night #1: We met for drinks at a restaurant/pub. I'm more of a coffee date person for a first date, but he suggested drinks instead. A little later than I am used to. Especially for a Monday night. But I had a nice time. He seemed like a nice guy. I'm not really sure if anything will come of it though. Since it was so late on a weeknight, I decided not to go that extra mile. Yesterday's hair and a quick make-up job. I wore the same thing I wore to work and just threw on some jewelry. 

Date Night #2: Second date with a guy I met last week. A second date, guys!! It's been forever since I had a second date. Okay, not really. I had a second date with a guy last week too... Oops, forgot about that one. But before this month, I haven't had a second date in...years (hides in shame). We ended up going to a corn maze and dinner. I tried to dress for fall. It ended up being a really nice night and I didn't wear my jacket for long. I got the dress from Target (the very first time I ever went to one) a few years ago. It is still one of my favourite items in my closet. It's a little short, so leggings are a must with it. I tend to wear it more as a shirt/tunic than a dress.

Linking up with these lovelies... because I like pretty things

Shopping My Closet pleated poppy

I'd love to see what you've been wearing all week. Let me know if you would like to join me.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Jumping Predicament

A few months ago, my friend and I tried out a new exercise class called jumping. It's basically aerobics on a mini trampoline.

We both loved it and thought it was really fun. I ended up buying punch card so I would be committed to going back.

I have been telling all of my friends about how great it is and that they should join. A couple of my friends did end up joining and bought passes as well.

The thing is... it's not as great as I've been telling everyone it is.

The problem isn't the class. I still love the class. It is an intense workout in a fun environment. It's hard work, but worth it. The problem is the owner of the studio.

I have never gotten a good vibe from her. My first impression was that she was a very intense person who was very passionate about what she did. That doesn't have to be a bad thing. She spewed all of these random facts about how great the work out was to me and my friend. Most of it was complete bullshit. She told us that jumping is good for people with any type of injuries including hip injuries, and that it has been known to CURE CANCER. Yes, she said that.

Obviously after that I knew right away to take anything she said with a grain of salt. It's obvious that this woman lives and breathes fitness. You can tell just by looking at her. She is incredibly tiny and strong. But it is also pretty clear that she doesn't always know what she is talking about.

It doesn't help that English isn't her first language. In my first class with her, she told us that her favourite fitness move was the plank... except that she didn't know what it was called in English. She kept spewing a bunch of different names for the move. The entire class kept telling her that it was called a plank, but she kept insisting that it wasn't. Don't get me wrong, I am extremely envious of anyone who speaks more than one language. I don't think she needs to have a perfect grasp of the language, but she should probably brush up on her terminology.

There are so many spelling and grammar mistakes in her pamphlets and on her websites that it makes my head hurt. If you are trying to start a professional and legitimate business in a language that is not native to you, you should probably get a friend to proof read your material. Heck, even if you are working in your native language, you should probably do this anyway. Just a tip.

Her English skills are actually quite problematic. In the summer the classes were filling up quite quickly, so you had to book your classes in advance. I sent her an e-mail asking her if the class was full and if there was room for me. Her response was "yes it is." That's it. I had no idea what question she was answering. I took a shot that she meant there was room for me and went to the class with no idea if I would be able to attend or not. I did end up getting in.

The last class I took, I overheard her say to her husband that she was just saying yes to everyone and had no idea if there would be enough trampolines for everyone. There were, but I was shocked at how unprofessional she was. Clearly the waiting lists to get into the class aren't as large as they used to be.

I was supposed to go to a class last night. I started feeling weird around lunch time. It was already after the time the cancelation policy goes into effect. I tried to will myself to get better so I wouldn't have to miss the class. By the time work was over I had such a bad headache that I was almost in tears and felt like throwing up. Is this a migraine? I don't even know. It wasn't fun.

I realized that there was no way I would be able to get through her jumping class. So I called her to let her know that I wouldn't be coming.

I was a little bit scared because I have seen her go off on customers who called to cancel. There were three girls who got stuck in traffic and couldn't make the class. They called to cancel just as the class was starting. At the front of the class so that everyone could hear, the owner went off at them into the phone. Telling them that they would all have to pay for the class that they were missing, even though they were just coming in for a free trial. After she hung up the phone she then proceeded to yell at us, repeating the same message that she had said to the girls on the phone.

Honestly, I felt kind of bad for her when those girls cancelled. She had a large waiting list for that class, so I could see why she was so upset. I understand why she has to have a cancellation policy. It makes sense. Most places have one.

So I called to cancel, knowing full well that I would have to pay some kind of cancellation fee. I physically could not go jumping. I suspected she didn't want me to throw up on her precious trampolines.

When I first called, she acted like it was such an inconvenience for her to have to pick up the phone. But when I was finally able to tell her that I wouldn't be able to make it to class, I got the same treatment that those girls got. She yelled and screamed at me over the phone for cancelling. After all she is trying to run a business. She is a professional woman. How dare I waste her time.

The thing is, I never said that I wouldn't pay the fee. I knew I would have to. I knew she was anal about it. So I didn't argue it. She argued for me. In the end she decided to waive the fee for me, but she was going to punch my card for the class that I missed and next time I would have to pay the fee. I am unclear on how her cancellation policy works. It's a $10.00 fee, but the punch card is $13.50 a class. Does this mean that she would normally charge someone who cancels the class fee AND the cancellation fee?

To be honest, I don't want to go back. I have done nothing but be supportive and enthusiastic about her classes, yet she has done everything she could to make me feel unwelcome.

When I first bought the punch card, she tried to punch it twice. She looked at me and said "You didn't think I would remember, but I do." I had no idea what she was talking about, and managed to convince her that I had always paid for my classes. When I was on the phone with her, she yet again confused me with someone else, and yelled at me for cancelling before.

I am in a bit of a predicament now. I have this punch card with seven classes left (okay, just six after my cancellation), but I don't want to go back. I wonder if I could sell it to one of my friends. Or just give it to them. It's a big waste of money at a time in my life when I can't afford to waste anything. But the idea of going back to one of her classes makes me want to burst into tears.

I might just try to book classes that I know are being taught by someone else. She will most likely still be in the studio, but at least I won't have to worry about her glaring at me throughout the class.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Too Much Food

I can't believe it is not Monday. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around this past long weekend. It just doesn't feel real to me. I am usually out of town for Thanksgiving, so it was quite a treat to have an extra day off that didn't include travel.

On Friday night I went to Fright Nights with my two best friends. As expected, I screamed like a little girl inside all of the haunted houses. But it was so much fun. We only made into four haunted houses (out of seven), but three of them I had never been in before so it worked out really well. I also managed to avoid the mini donuts. Pretty proud of that one. Even with going to Boston Pizza for dinner, I still managed to stick to my daily goal.

Saturday was pretty much a right off. It was Friendsgiving. I have to say, it was one of the best Thanksgiving meals that I ever had. Everyone made really amazing food. Like:
  • Turkey wrapped with bacon
  • Yams with marshmallows (first time I've ever had this combo)
  • Roasted potatoes
  • Brussel Sprout Casserole (I made it)
  • All the desserts (Pumpkin Pies, Apple Pie, Pumpkin Cookies, Rumballs and an Angel Food Cake)
I'm a pretty picky eater, so it was nice to have the whole table to choose from. My family is usually all about the unhealthy salads (potato, macaroni, etc), which I just can't do. They are also all about the mushrooms and onions who are both my enemies. Don't get me wrong, I'm going to have another really great Thanksgiving dinner with my family, I just won't be able to eat everything on the table... which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

I had so many plans for Sunday, but it didn't really work out as I expected. I had coffee with a friend right after yoga. We ended up chatting for about 3 hours. Afterwards I was starving. I ended up having my first binge in probably over a month.

I did almost okay on Monday. I was determined not to let Sunday's binge become an excuse to eat poorly for an unspecified time period. I got back on track right away. I did end up having pizza for dinner though. A friend came over and we decided to order some take away. We tried the Thai place on the corner and an Indian place down the street but neither was open. As a last resort, we headed to Little Caesar's. I was kind of excited to try the Pretzel Pepperoni pizza. I shouldn't have been. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. Certainly not worth all of the calories.

I'm glad that things are back to normal. I am looking forward to getting back on track this week.

Wednesday Update
I ended up sleeping in and almost being late for work today... which means no weight in today. I'll probably step on the scale tomorrow morning. It's probably for the best. I need an extra day to digest all of that food from the extra long weekend.

Linking up with these lovelies... Because it's Wednesday

The Hump Day Blog Hop Weigh In Wednesday