Friday, June 28, 2013

I'm Off!

I am taking off for a weekend of frivolity with the girls in Boston! I plan on eating and drinking to my heart's content and I will see you all next week!

If you are Canadian- enjoy the long weekend!!

If you are not- have a great weekend anyway!

Casey out.
This is the only picture I could find of me on a plane...but it pretty much sums up my emotions :)

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Balcony "Garden" Update

I thought today I would give a little update on how my balcony plants are doing! I came back after the last weekend and they were looking pretty beat (oops) but I watered them and they seem to have perked up again! I even bought them some plant food from the dollar store. I am a good plant mommy :)

This one looks a little meh, but that is just because the blooms are dying off naturally so I can't be blamed for that!

This plant (the peony?) is sooooo dramatic. It is like the teenager of the family because of how dramatic is takes me missing it's watering. I will actually come out and it will be totally slumped over. It is actually kind of growing sideways now and I don't know how to get the roots vertical again. It actually did have a pretty white bloom, but it got blown off in a storm :(

Ya....this plant died like 6 weeks ago. I really need to go to the store and pick up a new one. haha. Flowering plants never live long so I want to get something green.

My $10 Loblaws tree is doing good! Sometimes I come over and it has tipped over a bit. Seems a bit loose in its pot so I am debating transplanting it directly to the planter and adding more soil. Good idea, or no?

The succulents!! Or as I call them, the awesomeulents! They are SO happy out here, and don't mind the heat at all! They are getting really big, so I am now wondering if I should get them their own pots? Though, I don't really have the space for it and I love the three of them together.

The happiest one out here is the light blue/green one. It is growing babies!

So that is a little update on how I have not killed all my plants yet (I still maintain the flower just reached the end of it's life cycle!). I wonder how they will all do when they come in for the winter.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Goals and Roadblocks

I have a lot I still want to do to my tiny condo. However, time and funds are just not in abundance at this time so I am kind of tackling little projects as I can get to them. Like installing the trim on the balcony; It's been almost a month since I bought the trim and I have all the paint and stuff I need- I just don't have the time to sit down and get it done! It is definitely a weekend project (paint two coats, cut down, install, etc etc) and I just don't have any weekends in the foreseeable future!

I also want to paint my bathroom and get some new shelving up in there, but funds are a little tight right now. Turns out my dental plan did not cover a lot of my wisdom teeth removal and I have so many weekends away this summer that I just can't prioritize that type of spending until things start to even out a bit!

I am also trying to get back into running and incorporating more gym time into my evenings (the gym doesn't open early enough for me to use it before work!) so my evenings have gotten a bit tighter on time as well!

But that is life, you have to power through some busy patches a bit. Life is really good and fun right now, so I cannot complain! I just have to make some blog vs life priorities. Sarah at The Ugly Duckling House did a post the other day about the evils of the couch. She juggles grad school in addition to working and blogging AND she gets so much done. Her advice is just to NOT sit down when you get home- keep on going! So that is what I am trying to do now- instead of coming home and taking off my pants and putting on my housecoat (natch), I am going to spend some time cleaning and getting my life in order! Heck, maybe I will even start actually planning blog posts ;)

I am also going to start prioritizing. This blog does not make me money. It is a hobby (that I LOVE, but a hobby nonetheless). So sometimes I may not post. This is probably because I am out doing fun things (or the condo was a sty and I needed to stop living like a pig and clean it). Sometimes I will post about these things, but I hate to live behind a camera and taking weird shots of people (who may have not agreed to be on my blog!) and food, so sometimes I may not. I never want to feel like this blog is a chore.

It kind of sucks that the best light for photographing a blog in Toronto is in the summer, but in the summer I simply have no time for bigger projects or DIYs. Before I know it, it will be fall and the sun will be setting at 5pm again (gross). I even got a swanky remote for the camera and I have barely played with it!

So that is life right now. I certainly didn't plan such a long post! I better get off my butt now and start getting some stuff done before winter comes and ruins everything :)

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Weekend In the Country

I don't mean to be so MIA lately, but you will just have to get used to less blog posts from me because I am so busy! Lots of travel and plans and it is all fun stuff so I am not really complaining. Last weekend I headed out to Shawville, QC with my friends Jeni and Brandon, who are getting married this summer! You may remember I was out there last fall with both of them for the Shawville Fair. It was a long drive, but I was just a passenger in the car.

On Saturday the bride and I (I am her maid of honour!) had two showers to attend. They were both very lovely, but I don't have any photos because I really hate experiencing events behind a camera and I was quite happy to chat with all the ladies who attended and eat the delicious food prepared by the hosts.

On Saturday night we were invited to a BBQ for the younger folk. What the couple didn't know was this was a surprise sexy shower for them, hosted by her two best friends! We had so much fun, complete with inappropriately shaped foods.
There was another cake that I can't picture here!
Besides gifts to open and games to play, there were also adorable 4 week old puppies to play with! They were English Bulldogs and just the cutest pile of rolls that I have ever held. I debated kidnapping one.

After we put the puppies to bed and had our fill of food, we went out to the backyard for a big bonfire. It was a great night and I definitely enjoyed having the chance to sleep in the next morning!

Sunday was just relaxing on the deck before driving the long way home. It was a great weekend and so much fun to get back out to the country again. This weekend I am flying out to Boston, so the traveling is not letting up any time soon!!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Biking to Work

Thank you all for all your comments on my bathroom paint options yesterday! I am still deciding, but I was pumped to see so many of you liked turquoise too!

Happy First Day of Summer!!
This week I decided it was time to start biking to and from work. I had bought my bike back in April, but I hadn't been quite ready to bike all the way to work yet (it is 12.2km one way!). Then I started feeling ready, but the weather wasn't cooperating, or I had plans downtown, or I was getting my wisdom teeth out. So many excuses! On Tuesday I decided enough was enough and I was doing it.

The forecast said drizzle, but I knew it was ending soon so I wasn't too worried about it and I just wore my rain coat. Then, not long after I started, I noticed both tires were kind of flat. However, being stupid, I decided to forge on rather than turn back. One reason being that my coworker has a bike pump in his car and I don't even own one yet! haha!

And then it started raining.

Luckily it didn't rain hard or for long, but I was seriously regretting this bike ride about 5km in. I had also conveniently forgotten that a portion of my ride is hilly and going up hills on under-inflated tires is pure torture. I also got a bit lost at at the end. It was a terrible ride but I made it in!

However I had plans Tuesday and Wednesday evening so my bike ended up sitting at the office for a couple of days until I could bike home on Thursday! The bike home was sooo much better. I had nicely inflated tires, thanks to my coworker, and the weather was gorgeous. It thoroughly made up for my disastrous first ride.

In case you were wondering about biking in city traffic....I don't! Most of my ride is on bike paths or on very low traffic roads (I may see one or two cars).

Solid lines are straight up bike paths and dotted are "bike friendly"
And for the record, this isn't the exact start or finish. I don't need you knowing where I live and work! haha!

It is such a nice ride. I am along the lake for most of it and then I go up along the river. It is gorgeous and you quickly forget you are in the city! I go against the traffic, especially in the mornings, so I just pedal along at a leisurely pace. Even when there is "traffic" it is other bikers, people jogging, families out for walks with is just a great, happy atmosphere.

I took some photos of my ride home to share!

I don't think my legs (or my butt!) are quite ready to face biking as a daily commuting option but I hope to do it at least once a week! I am trying to get in shape and biking takes almost the same amount of time as transit so it really fits into my schedule.

Do you bike to work?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Bathroom Paint Colour

I am trying to decide what colour to paint my bathroom. I know I want something bold, but I am still waffling on what route to exactly go. I think I am leaning towards a deep turquoise. The condo is all so light and airy, so I feel like the bathroom is a good place to add some personality and shock factor.




I decided to bust out the old photoshop software to see if I could envision this colour in my tiny place.



Please excuse my poor photoshopping; It's not like a took a course in this or anything *coughcough*

So what do you think about bold turquoise? Any other ideas? I already have navy and grey in the condo so I don't want that and I think I am really feeling a jewel tone in here.

For funsies, I also did a purple colour.

And then I went ahead and did plum and pink :)

For the record, I am pretty sure hot pink will clash with my beige tile, but a girl can dream, right?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


This past week I packed up my laziest clothing, said "Sayonara!" to my office early and headed out with my friend for a 7 hour drive to a cottage! Why so far for a weekend? It was our friend's bachelorette party!  All three of us used to live together in University so we had to be there to celebrate her last days as a single lady!

The drive out was fairly uneventful. It was a beautiful day, but we only stopped to grab some grub and put gas in the car- our goal was to make it there by 9pm! We did keep an eye out for the Big Apple, because we had heard there was now a face painted on it! True fact- when I was a kid I thought people going to "The Big Apple" were literally going to get some pie at this place. Didn't know about New York sharing the name (though this apple is better).

The most eventful part of the drive was when we saw this deer on the road! We were almost there and so focused on our 9pm arrival goal and then all of a sudden we saw this deer at the top of the hill, surrounded by the sunset. It came from nowhere!

We made it by 9pm! Go us! We spent Friday night being classy.
Stolen from my friend:)

The Saturday was spent lying in the sun on the dock! I also barbequed for the first time in my life (I know- that is sad). It went well and no one got food poisoning!

Stolen from my friend:)
I did not get into the water at all either. It is June...I just don't trust Canadian lakes not to freeze off my butt this early in the season.

Saturday night we had a great party for the bride- lots of food and games including Kiss the Stud (poster on the wall you had to kiss blindfolded), Guess the Panties (we all brought in a pair that best represented us and the bride had to guess whose was whose), charades, and the Newlywed Game (bride has to guess the answers the groom gave about their relationship).
Stolen from my friend:)

Stolen from my friend:)

Stolen from my friend:)

All in all it was a great weekend and I was so glad to get out of the city and into some fresh air, if only for a day! Thank you so much to the girls for arranging everything and inviting me!! I can't wait to see everyone again at her wedding!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Alopecia Update and My Bald Beauty Regimen!

Time for another update on my DCP treatment for my Alopecia! It has been going well. I missed a week because of my wisdom teeth, but I went again last week. There is definitely hair coming in now, which is kind of cool except it looks terrible (yay patchy short hair) so I ain't exactly showing it off (I tried to photograph the progress but it is hard to capture because a lot of it is blonde)! Still not much hair on top so I joke to the person doing the treatment (doctor? nurse? student? I have no idea) that I am going to look like an old man if this keeps up.

Still no guarantee that this hair will stay, but it is about an inch long in places so that means it hasn't been falling out for a month or two. So we shall see- my next follow up isn't until the fall. I am a long way from a ponytail (my ultimate dream hairdo after wearing wigs for so long!).

I thought I would give a few "beauty" tips for other people who have full Alopecia Universalis like me, because I do require a different regimen than most girls!

1. Wigs
I gave a long update on my wigs throughout the years about a month ago. The majority of my later-years ones came from Continental Hair in Toronto. I have seen mixed reviews on them online on Alopecia boards, but I have always loved going there. They treat me really well and my current wig is 2.5 years old and still going strong! A good quality human hair wig will run you a good chunk of change (ahem almost 3 mortgage payments on this condo!), but they last a long time.

I prefer human hair because I can style it! Since I can't wear my hair in an updo, it is nice to have some options to change up my hair. I also love my hair salon because I can go in and get my hair cut and styled on my head like a normal girl! They also can change the colour or do highlights. Only issue is you have to COMMIT because it won't grow out (but you can often try on the style with the in-store wigs first!)

Same wig:
French Braid

2. Eyebrows
I don't remember when I lost my eyebrows. My body hair (including facial) was the last to go, so I imagine I was 15 or 16? No idea. At first I drew them on, but the results were hideous! Oh my gosh I kind of wish my mom would burn all those photos! Luckily one day my mom found this product at the drug store called Ibrowsers, which are temporary tattoos. You can no longer find them in stores, but they are in Toronto and ship quickly! Also, over the years their prices have gone down and their selection has gone up. That never happens! I wear style 111. I have gotten used to this look on my face so I never try new ones. I have considered getting them tattooed on for real but that is scary! A tattoo on my FACE?! What if one is crooked? What if styles change? What if it looks weird when I am old and wrinkly? So I haven't made up my mind, but it would be SO convenient! I always carry spare eyebrows and brown liquid eyeliner just in case (the eyeliner can fill small holes) and I am careful not to scratch my forehead. A pair usually lasts me a few days.

3. Eyelashes
I wear false eyelashes everyday to help frame my eyes. I just buy drugstore brand eyelashes, but I recommend finding Duo or Lashgrip brand glue. They are the best! It does take practice, but once you get it you can throw them on in 2 minutes flat.

What I do to apply is put a dab of glue on a Q-tip because it works better if the glue sits out for 30 seconds or so. I then pick off yesterday's dried glue (it is easier next day!). I apply a thin line of glue with the Q-tip and apply to my eye. I hold the outer corner with my fingers and I start sticking it down on the inner corner of my eye and place down along the eye. I hold it for a couple seconds, and then I turn the tube of glue around and use the thin edge to press between to lashes to make sure it stays down! That's it! Make sure you don't start too close to your inner eye or it will drive you nuts all day. Also, it is always toughest when they are new. Eyelashes need to be broken in and it takes a few days. I also carry glue and a small mirror with me all day because sometimes a corner can pop up. I just apply a dab of glue to my finger and use the thin edge of the glue tube to pick up a bit and fix the spot. A pair of lashes lasts me a month or two! I also have a case for them when I travel!

4. Face washing
Because my eyebrows can be easily rubbed off, I avoid washing my face with traditional face wash. Instead, I use these facial wipes I find at Shopper's Drugs Mart from Balea.
They are way cheaper than other brands and usually go on sale. They take off makeup well and make it easy for me to work around my eyebrows! I also have a case for them so they are easy to pack for travelling. Whenever I am eyebrowless, I try to exfoliate to keep my skin fresh. I find my eyebrow area can be a bit dried out and I can't moisturize it daily due to the eyebrows.

5. Leg hair
Hey! Alopecia Universalis means I don't have to shave my legs so there are no tips here- just enjoy those smooth gams!

So those are my tips for living with hairloss. Lots of women with AU choose to go wigless, but I have decided it is not for me and that is ok! I am quite comfortable going without it if the need arises, but I am just a girly-girl at heart and I like my hair and eyelashes! And as you can see, I have made the most of the blank canvas up there!

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