So that was 2011

Yesterday when we were leaving at 11:30a.m. (hooray for leaving early on a Friday before a long weekend), my coworker said, “Only one more day to go in 2011! From January 1, this year was just crap.” I looked at him and asked, “Didn’t you get married in January?” He backtracked and said “Well, there were some definite high points, but on a whole, 2011 sucked.”

When I look back on 2011, I see the opposite. 2011 was fantastic, with a few low points. Especially compared to 2010, this was a freaking awesome year.

The low points first:

  • The first three months of the year at my previous job, they were some of the most horrible months in my working career. When I look back now, I can see that this job was causing me so much stress I got sick from it.
  • Losing my job (well, not technically, my contract ended, but there was always the option to renew it) just when we’d bought our condo.
  • Still some family drama that caused me a lot of stress in November.
  • Weight gain – not much, but enough to notice. Too much damn ice cream.
  • A few too many shopping mistakes and regrets, and a bit too much shopping as a whole. My usual goal of shopping more consciously and responsibly didn’t exactly pan out.

Now all the good stuff:

  • Becoming a homeowner for the first time. Will and I closed on our uptown Toronto condo on February 9, and it’s been great since. We love our place, no regrets.
  • Being on vacation for 6 weeks when I was unemployed. I didn’t think it was a such a good thing at first, but in the end, it was what I needed. I was able to “detox” from my old job, relax, and get my health back in order. What have I said about crisitunity? I did wear an awful lot of elastic waistbands though.
  • Getting my new job in the same company. It’s been amazing. Of course, there are still days when I don’t want to go to work, but those days are few and far between. My boss is great, my coworkers are great, and I’m very happy. As much as I said in my previous job that “it’s just a job,” I spend most of my waking hours at work, so if it sucks, it’ll inevitably spill over into the rest of my life.
  • Feeling better again. I spent most of 2010 with health problems, but I’ve been much, much better this year. If I make it through today, I’ll have made it through 2011 without ending up in the hospital with an asthma attack (my last bad attack was June 2010). It doesn’t sound like that much of an accomplishment, but I was hospitalized twice in 2010. Small victories are still victories.
  • Going to NYC for the first time in 5 years. It was nice to be back after a long break.
  • As usual, spending great time with family and friends. Will and I have been together for 12-1/2 years and still going strong, even if he does hate sharing a bed with me after sleeping in his own bed for almost two weeks at his parents’ house in BC. :)

Like most people, I spend too much time dwelling on the negative. I think things like “yes, I have a good job, but it’s still an entry-level job.” “Yes, I’m a homeowner, but it’s just a tiny condo.” I’m tired of the buts. So I think my overall goal for 2012 is to focus on the positive and leave those nagging tiresome buts behind. Let’s see if I stick to that!

Will and I are planning to spend New Year’s Eve pretty much the same as we did last year, a nice dinner at home and then out to the movies (we’ll probably see Tintin). So I’d like to wish everyone a Happy New Year, all the best in 2012, and thanks for reading my little blog!



Best of 2011: Outfits

A year in outfits again already? I hate to trot out an overused cliché, but time really does fly. Here’s my top 11 for 2011.

L: Aggressively ruffled. Still a favourite sweater, I was wearing that outfit today.
R: Older Anthro: I picked up this Lithe top from Roxy. Unfortunately, I wasn’t into Anthropologie when they were carrying Lithe, so I missed out on some great pieces.

L: An example of making something work. I do love this outfit, but this dress was also a regret purchase of 2011 (it’s a little short, even for me).
R: Getting reacquainted with an old dress. I’ve had this striped Club Monaco dress for three and a half years, and I really don’t wear it enough.

L: Orange and blue – a colour combination that was the cause of an argument with a friend. I still say it works.
R: My first outfit for summer 30 for 30, and my go-to dress for the summer.

Still one of my favourite dresses, part of my summer 30 for 30.

Same skirt and top is the same anyway, calling this a tie to sneak an extra outfit in. I picked up the Winged Victory Top from Roxy too, and it’s a favourite in my closet now.

L: The elephants! It’s a great dress and I’m happy I picked it up.
R: Thanks to Bailey 44, it doesn’t get easier than this.

and here's fall

It’s a very different set than last year's, but there are still two repeats. Things change, some things stay the same. Curious to see what 2012 will look like!


Best of 2011: Bought

I always say this: I can’t believe it’s [insert holiday/time of year here] already. So I can’t believe it’s the end of 2011 already. It’s a time for reflection on the past twelve months and a time to look ahead to the coming year, and to eat as much ice cream as possible before New Year’s Resolutions kick in (at least for the first two weeks of January).

I say every year that the coming year will be a year of restraint, but it never quite works out that way. I shopped a fair bit in 2011; here are my top 12 (because I couldn’t keep to just 10) favourites, in no particular order.

1. Anthropologie Liquid Acres Skirt (Tabitha)

I bought this skirt during my personal shopping experience at Anthropologie at Rockefeller Center, in August. I’m surprised at how versatile it is and how many different outfits can be made with it. It’s the kind of piece I go to Anthro for; a classic piece with an interesting/slightly quirky print that still works well with the rest of my wardrobe.

2. Anthropologie Sumukhwa Skirt (Maeve)

I snagged this on sale a while back, but I haven’t posted any outfits with it yet. I love the colour combination and the print. It was one of the those pieces that I felt really strongly about; it was a must-have for me. Again, one of the pieces I go to Anthro for.

3. Tory Burch Reva Ballet Flats

I just picked these up on my Christmas trip to Boston, but they’re definitely a favourite, a can’t-go-wrong/wear-til-they-fall-apart shoe.

4. Miss Sixty Tracy Shoes

Not very practical, but definitely fabulous.

5. Anthropologie Cirque A-Line

I agonized about whether I was too old to buy this dress, but in the end I’m really glad I did, even if I don’t wear it very much.

6. Anthropologie Bette Cardigan (Sparrow)

I love cardigans; this was a good one.

7. Anthropologie Verdant Slip Dress

It was the perfect summer dress for me.

8. Club Monaco Celia Skirt

For those days when all I wanted was to wear leggings or yoga pants and I couldn’t. Bonus points that it’s cute too!

9. Club Monaco Misty Top

Knits are a staple in my closet, and this is a very flattering one.

10. Banana Republic Ruched top

(with Matsu aventurine necklace, Club Monaco Celia Skirt, Wolford Satin Opaque tights, and Michael Kors heels)
My new favourite top. I’ll be wearing it a lot this winter.

11. T3 Single Pass Whirl

I’m so hair-incompetent, but this has given me a whole new set of hair options!

12. Apple iPad 2

I love love love my iPad. I was initially planning to buy a new laptop after Will spilled beer on my keyboard, but this is so much better.

Bonus: My uptown Toronto condo.
Definitely the most expensive and most important purchase this year. No buyer’s remorse here!


Christmas photos

I learned an important lesson on the flight home from Boston: never drink a litre of water before boarding the plane, even if you use the bathroom before you board, because you’ll have to go again and the pilot may not turn off the seatbelt sign for 15 minutes after the plane has taken off, never mind the time sitting on the plane and taxiing to take off. That was brutal. As soon as the seatbelt sign went off I made a mad dash for the bathroom. Afterwards was the best feeling in the world, much like Homer after he drank too much crab juice.

Anyway, aside from that brutal 25 minutes, my vacation was great! Christmas in Boston with my family was crazy, but at the same time relaxing. Lots of good food, some shopping, and lots of time with the family Basset Hound. She features prominently in my pictures of the holiday (apologies for the mix of iPhone, iPad, and Lumix DMC-TZ5 photos).

She’s just arrived after a 9-hour car ride from Ottawa and of course all she wants is food.

My dad feeding her breakfast (home-cooked, my mom is her personal chef).

Our dinner of prime rib roast (served rare), mashed potato and kale, and arugula salad with pomegranate seeds and clementine slices. I don’t usually eat read meat, but this was an exception. It was so good, but my stomach was a little confused.

On Christmas Day, my sister and I made gluten-free ninjabread (gingerbread ninja men).

For Christmas, we always have roast goose instead of turkey. My mom debones it and stuffs it with a combination of sticky rice and wild rice.

We had it with mashed sweet potatoes, sautéed red cabbage, and a cranberry-orange-ginger sauce (the only thing I made). It was with delicious.

After dinner, I sat on the floor in a food coma and Abby cuddled up to me.

And fell asleep. I wanted to go upstairs to Skype with Will, but that would have disturbed the princess.


But so cute.

There are no pics of me because I spent the entire weekend in slouchy, comfortable clothes and I was in no mood to be photographed. The dog gets all the glory; she’s lucky she’s photogenic.


To my sister's home for the holidays

Nothing clothes-related today, but just a quick post to note that I have been a rather sporadic blogger lately, and my New Year's Resolution #1 is to be a more consistent blogger in 2012.

I'm currently sitting in the lounge at Billy Bishop Airport waiting for my flight to Boston to spend Christmas with my sister and her husband. The flight has been delayed due to foggy conditions in both cities, but it just means I've been able to take advantage of the "executive" lounge with free wifi, almonds, cookies, tea, and coffee. All air travel should be this civilized.
That stem belongs to the CN Tower; it's so foggy downtown that the top of it has disappeared. Not exactly the white Christmas you'd hope for, but tomorrow is going to be gorgeous in Cambridge so I'm going to be spending as much time outside as possible.
I'll likely be MIA until I come back to Toronto next week, so wishing everyone a very safe, healthy, and happy holiday season.


as sparkly as it gets

I love my wardrobe, but with this month’s EBEW challenge, I threw open my closet doors and went “Huh, no sparkles.” I love anything sparkly, but apparently not on my body.

So this is the best I could do, and I swear there are sequins on this dress.

Anthropologie Sub-Continent Dress (Floreat) | J.Crew Jenna’s Cardigan | Hilary Druxman necklace | Wolford Satin Opaque tights | Michael Kors heels | Home Depot two-foot artificial Christmas tree, Charlie Brown style (I live in a condo, everything has to be on a smaller scale)

See, there are the sequins. On the belt. They’re just not that sparkly, but a lot of sparkle doesn’t really fit into my lifestyle. I need to find a really fabulous holiday party to go to first.

Sequins + Sparkles | Everybody, Everywhere


All I want for Christmas is to be reimbursed.

So this pretty much sums up what Christmas is like for me and my siblings now:


My sister and I sent our brother and sister-in-law a Kitchenaid stand mixer, but we told them about it advance because I need the UPC code for a mail-in rebate (that sounds awful when I write it, but they understand, and they also appreciated receiving it early because my sister-in-law has 3 dozen Christmas cookies to make for a Christmas exchange). My sister told me to remind her to write me a cheque, but I said, “Enh, just keep your half and that’s my Christmas present to you.” It’s pretty much like that for my friends too; one friend told me her sister-in-law wanted a hat from Club Monaco, and she could just reimburse her for it.

It’s not like that with my 3-1/2-year-old nephew though. It’s full-on Christmas and we make sure it’s pretty damn awesome for him.

When people ask me what I want for Christmas, I have a hard time thinking of anything because I generally buy myself what I want during the year, and I don’t like to ask people for things. But if I were this year, this is what I’d want.

Anthropologie Fringed Lace Top, by TT

It’s simple black, but the lace and the back detail make it special.

Anthro Curvy Chrysanthemum Vase

It’s one of my favourite colour combos.

J Brand 811 Mid-rise Skinny Leg in Riviera Blue

They’re pants and I don’t usually wear pants, but they’re teal and therefore awesome. Also much cheaper in the U.S.; I tried them on at Aritizia where they were CAD$215 plus 13% tax.

J Brand 811 Mid-Rise Skinny Leg in Navy 

Yes, these are the ones Kate Middleton wore on her Canadian tour, so I’m jumping on a bandwagon here. But they’re really awesome jeans.

Fossil Sheila Dress

This dress caught my eye from Kendi’s lookbook. It looks like a really cute piece to dress up or down, and it’s teal. There is a pattern here. I also really, really want this model’s hair. I might take her hair instead of the dress. Maybe.

Rebecca Minkoff striped pouch set

If only they weren’t out of stock everywhere. I blame Lisa for this want, but of course in the nicest way.


Anthropologie catalogue: December 2011

My love for Anthropologie may be waning slightly. I think it’s still my favourite store, but I may be a little over-saturated, and lately there hasn’t been very much that’s been catching my eye.

Even so, I still love their catalogues, and probably always will, even if I don’t want to buy anything from them.

pintucked plaid buttondown, tinsel cropped halter, skinny stone cuff, accordant bracelets, metallic maxi skirt

heikki blouse, gauzy mint maxi, emeraldine oxford heels

golfo de paria necklace, swirled stitches pullover, gauzy mint maxi – gorgeous colour

blanched & buckled cardigan, even flurry dress, sweaterknit ankle boots, scaled floro satchel

cold wave scarf necklaces, purl-wise pullover, petrified cuff, gilded jacquard crops, steeplechase ankle boots – I totally wish I could pull off shiny brocade pants

faux fur necker, hildesay sweater, anchored boatneck, nolana skirt, opaque tights, mirrorball clogs – nothing says winter like thick grey tights

rock & stones necklace, velvet trimmings blouse, pleated ponte skirt, solid socks, piled prism t-straps

easton cropped peacoat, anchored boatneck, clipped cities skirt, solid socks, mirrorball clogs, stitched stripes tote

a real hoot canister, wise ol' canister, biotroph cookie jar, wide-eyed cookie jar, anjou cookie jar – I love these!

willowherb rolling pin, milk bottle measuring cups, painted amaaryllis butter dish, painted amaryllis spoon rest, southwestern striped canisters, zesty measuring spoons, farmer's market baskets, willowherb muffin pan, painted amaryllis measuring cups

valise journals, banderole pencil set, obliging bird clip, saturated readers, madurodam colored pencils – I wish I were an artist and could justify buying stuff like this.

trinket & treasure candlesticks ($398 each!) – so insane, and yet so awesome

azemmour serving bowl, kinetic stencil mug, la woof plate, papillons plate, pomme plate, qui plate

anemone mezzo vase, pansy petite vase, rose of sharon grand vase, curvy chrysanthemum vase – love all of these

homegrown monogram mugs, farmer's market baskets

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...