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Life, Style
Versace at H&M: Top 5 Dresses We’re Dying To Buy
October 24, 2011 at 8:59 am 0
I'm DYING to get my hands on some of these unbelievable Versace dresses that will be available starting on November 17th at H&M. Great design...great prices...sounds like my kind of offering! It's the usual UBER-SEXY Versace style, which will come in sooo handy for all the holiday parties! Here's my top 5 picks: 1. The Red Dress - Oh my...so sexy & classy & red! All of my favourite things in one! 2. The Gold Dress - Soooo sexy & fun! This dress makes me want to party! 3. The Yellow Dress - Stunning colour, and looks amazing with this blue scarf & fun purse. 4. The Versace LBD - Classic! 5. Light & Dark Blue Asian Inspired Dress - This is just fun! It's cute, girly and could be worn a million different ways!
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Life
Christmas Procrastination: What To Do To Get Motivated
December 17, 2010 at 6:59 pm 0
Christmas-Fireplace-Decorations I'm not sure that I'm fully in the grinch category...but Christmas does not excite me at all, which means I wait until the last possible moment to buy gifts and do all the preparations necessary. I'm not into complaining, so I'll leave the long list of things wrong with Christmas off this post (hint, hint, it's freezing, expensive, stressful, involves terrible music and forced encounters with work mates you'd probably rather avoid.....just to name a few). Regardless, the fact remains, a little coaxing is required to bring out the "ho-ho" feeling. To get ready to get in the Christmas spirit here's what this (faux) Doctor orders. 1. make yourself some wonderful hot chocolate with marshmallows. Add lots of cream, and things you wouldn't normally drink. 2. put on a warm sweater. 3. curl up on the sofa. 4. make mental notes of memories you've shared with all the people on your Christmas list. 5. Enjoy those memories. Savour the fun times...when you laughed together, beautiful meals you shared together, maybe getting out of some sad times together. Enjoy the *real* moments you shared. 6. Then think of what each of those people would like for Christmas. Not some fancy, new, hot thing...but something meaningful, and set yourself a nice modest budget for each person. Maybe their grandmother's favourite vase broke this year and you know a guy who can fix it - get it repaired for them and wrap it up for Christmas. Or maybe they are always losing their golf balls when playing - get them a golf ball personalizer (you can type your initialls on the ball!) At the end of your list if you have some empty names make an effort to do some good this year - buy gifts from great (& charitable) organizations such as Me To We, or Unicef. Give your friends a gift & the proceeds will go to the charity! Doesn't that make you feel excited about Christmas already?? See, it's not so bad after all.
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Travel
Traveling to Italy: The Essential Guide
May 7, 2010 at 12:00 pm 0

It's Spring, and the travel bug is spreading like crazy! This year Italy is a very hot vacation destination. With loads of airlines having big sales, hotels offering deals, and a huge desire to get away the time is now to plan your summer vacation. Check out these posts with great tips on what to see, where to go, and what it's like. Florence Tuscany Rome Amalfi Coast Siena 7 Things You Need To Know Before Going To Italy Shopping In Italy
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Style
The Best Part of February – The Amazing Sales on Shoes!
February 8, 2010 at 12:02 pm 0
Here up North the winter is not fun. There's no point in saying it's lovely and fresh and blah, blah, blah - it just sucks. Plain and Simple. And by February most people are tired of the heavy jackets, winter boots, mittens and scarves. Even if you had nice things they've probably been ruined by the salty roads already. But, around this time of year something wonderful happens that offers a glimpse of hope for all the winter haters. All the shoe stores have amazing sales!

Shoes on sale at Aldo for $69 vs. the $125 original price

Shoes on sale at Aldo for $69 vs. the $125 original price

They have to clear out all the inventory from the previous year, so most stores have shoes on sale from 50-70% off! As long as choose a style that wasn't super trendy last year (and now outdated) you've scored yourself some great deals on beautiful shoes that are ready for spring wear, whenever the big thaw happens.
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Style
Fashion Crush:Michael Kors
January 5, 2010 at 12:43 pm 0
The new line from Michael Kors is AMAZING! I love the clean lines, cool details and funky touches that add a dash of personality. Finally, some office friendly clothes that are fun and professional looking. Who's sassy in the office now? Here are some of my faves.

Micheal Kors Red Tulip Dress

Micheal Kors Red Tulip Dress



Michael Kors White Dress with Zipper Detailing

Michael Kors White Dress with Zipper Detailing



Michael Kors Black Dress With Fun Shoulder Designs

Michael Kors Black Dress With Fun Shoulder Designs

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Life
Wedding Dress Shopping
January 4, 2010 at 12:20 pm 0


Just for the record I’m not a typical bride. I’ve never dreamed of what my wedding would be like, I’m not that worried what my dress looks like, and dealing with everyone’s requests and suggestions makes everything seem more like a hassle than fun. And it’s not that I’m not excited to get married. I’m very excited to share my life (officially) with my chosen one. It’s just the whole procedure of the wedding seems a bit much. If I had my way we’d be going to city hall, sharing a glass of champagne and then going on a cool trip. But…my Latino fiancé and his big family would never have it. And I don’t want to be the evil gringa in the eyes of his family. So, a big wedding it is! Our compromise is to do it in Mexico, as a destination wedding. And based on all the schedules in the wedding magazines I’m already late. Everyone says you should do this 18 months to 6 months prior to your wedding. Holy Cow!

So three months out I hit the streets in search of a suitable wedding dress. I had a vague idea of what I wanted. Fun, light, flowy, pretty basic – and not expensive. I am blown away at the $2,000 price tags on so many dresses! And I’m a girl that likes to spend money on things I love, but a dress I wear once just seems crazy to spend so much money on. I’d be happy with a $50 dress. I can digest $300, but more than that makes me wiggle inside.

Armed with friends and family we went on a search for a dress. We went to three different stores, and tried on a few different dresses at each place. It was so much fun to wear princess dresses and try everything on without looking at the price tag. Of course that wasn’t my reality but I just wanted to have fun and pretend I had no limits. It was fun but also pretty tiring. Who knew wedding dress shopping was so much work!
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Travel
Seven Italian Lessons
August 14, 2009 at 12:12 pm 0
1. With the right travel partner touring in unkown lands is a delight. I went with my boyfriend, and we spent every minute together for 11 days. Even in stressful situations we laughed about it later. With the wrong travel partner you could spend a painful two weeks stressed out of your mind. 2. Tuscan wines are to be enjoyed in excess. Wine with lunch, afternoon wines, wine with dinner, after dinner drinks, nightcaps…….. it was all so amazing that I couldn’t resist. 3. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing. It happened on day six, when my pants didn’t fit…..I realized that a steady diet of cheese, wine and salami are not slimming. 4. Shopping in Italy is a serious activity. Everybody dresses up and looks their very best to go to the shops and be waited on. And, there is a definite etiquette to be followed….I don’t know what it is, but I know that I don’t know it. 5. There are no Italians…..in tourist areas anyways. I was amazed that after travelling through Florence, Rome, Amalfi and Siena that there were almost no Italians……I found them on the last day in the outskirts of Florence. I can’t blame them, I’d go crazy too if I had millions of tourists in my town every year. 6. Italians are not that friendly. French people have a bad reputation from tourists because they let you know they don’t like you, whereas Italians just ignore you. I was expecting them to be warmer and more inviting. 7. Sometimes you just need to sit back. Let the driver wiz you around - even if you are two inches from all the other cars, flying around sharp corners and going through dark tunnels at 140km/hour, just go with it! Otherwise you’ll be stressed your ENTIRE vacation, and that’s just not fun.
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Style
Shopping in Italy
August 10, 2009 at 4:24 pm 1
When in Rome, do as the Romans…and based on how well put together all Romans looked that meant that I also had to put myself together. Of course this meant I had to do some serious shopping! So, on the last day in Rome I set aside a few hours to do some power shopping…and as it turns out power spending! After running around visiting tourist sites all morning I went as fast as I could through the shopping area near the Spanish Steps in search of the perfect purse. I went into all the designer stores, like Hermes, Chanel, Prada and Gucci, but since I was in Italy it seemed only fitting that I buy an Italian purse! I actually wasn’t looking for an extremely expensive designer purse, I was looking for a Furla purse, but given the frusturating shopping experience in Furla I couldn’t bear to have my statement “Italian” purse from that store. So…I splurged…and in a BIG WAY! It was nearing 7pm and all the stores were preparing to close. I was starting to get stressed and I could feel my window of opportunity closing in on me. Was I going to miss out on my dream of buying a fancy Italian purse in Italy? Not me! So with 20 minutes of shopping time left I ran into Prada, all sweaty and dirty and very uncivilized. I was touching everything, moving all the merchandise and not acting very Prada at all. One of the sales people was very patient with me, showing me all the goodies I requested, and then my Prada dream purse appeared in front of my very eyes! I knew it was destiny as soon as I saw the detailing and the perfect mixture of hardware and fine leather.

For the full story on the Italian Dream travel entries read the stories on Florence, Tuscany, Rome, Amalfi and Siena.
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Travel
Rome: Italian Dream Part Three
July 23, 2009 at 9:43 am 3
Rome We left Tuscany very early in the morning and drove to Rome hoping to arrive prior to rush hour traffic. You’ve probably heard that the drivers in Italy are crazy, and that’s 100% correct. Luckily for me my boyfriend drives like an Italian very comfortably – he’s an expert at driving inches away from other cars at one hundred miles an hour, changing lanes like a madman, and passing people on roads that only fit one car. For most tourists driving in Italy is stressful, but for my boyfriend it was the ultimate driving test, and he passed with a gold sticker! As we were driving into Rome I thought my boyfriend was going to explode with enthusiasm over the architecture and historical buildings. After stepping out of the car many times to see the buildings we were passing we finally arrived at our hotel, only to leave within seconds and see the sights – and they are sights to behold. We went to the standard tourist spots like the Coliseum, the Forum, the Spanish Steps and Trevi fountains, and then we just walked around the city getting lost, taking little alleyways, and stopping for coffee and wine often. I really wanted to go shopping in Rome and shop we did! We were all messy and sweaty from walking around all day but that didn’t stop us (even though I’m sure many shopkeepers wish it did). Shopping in Italy is a serious activity, it’s very expensive, and not something to be taken casually. Everybody dresses up and looks their very best to go to the shops and be waited on. And, there is a definite etiquette to be followed….I don’t know what it is, but I know that I don’t know it. The funny thing is, the salespeople in the luxury stores were much friendlier than at the mid price stores. We went into Prada and although we seemed like misfits (messy, dirty, looking like tourists and touching everything) they were very nice to us. But at Furla the girls were so obnoxious and rude. It made me crazy that this girl was two steps behind me re-organizing everything that I touched and huffing and puffing the whole time, like I was causing her major undue stress. Ummmmm – you work in sales right? Customer service? Oh well, I was on vacation so I wasn’t going to let that bring me down! After two full days, and plenty of sight seeing and shopping, it was time to move on. I really enjoyed Rome – it felt like an actual Italian city and not just a tourist spot. There are locals around, going to and fro work and they tend to co-exist much better with the flocks of tourists than in Florence. I could have spent a few more days in the city, but it was time to move south. Up Next: the beautiful Amalfi Coast For more Italian travel journals see my posts on Florence and Tuscany
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Life
Seven Ways I Survived the Economic Crisis
July 21, 2009 at 6:59 pm 0
Recently I had a chance to reflect on life over the past year. It has been a great year for me in my personal life (just a hint, but I met someone lovely), and it's also been a good year for me financially. I was able to get a better job and weather the economic crisis with a good chunk of savings. Here are some of the things that I did that made a difference to my bottom line. 1. I bought a condo that was affordable. Instead of being tempted to buy a larger 1bdrm apt that was over my budget I settled on my bachelor apt. Yes, it`s small, but so are my mortgage payments. Besides, I know I won`t be here forever, and I`ve been able to save a lot living in this very affordable space. 2. I switched to a cash budget. Every month I watched my money very carefully and made sure I never over-extended myself. With cash it is so much easier because you never get a surprise credit card bill in the mail. 3. I paid off my debt and saved like crazy. I needed to have a large safety savings account so that I could feel comfortable everyday, in case something bad happened. Now I know that if I lose my job I will be okay for a few months. 4. I socialized differently. I love going out to fancy restaurants and very much enjoy great wine, but I don`t need to indulge all the time. This past year I`ve had friends over for dinner more than ever, and I drink my fancy wine at home, too. If I do go out it`s for a special occasion, or I meet my friends for drinks after dinner. 5. I shopped for less expensive clothing alternatives. Instead of going for the pricey brand names I`d opt for the less expensive clothing lines. The funny thing is, people often ask me if I got my dresses at designer stores. I was at a wedding in Montreal and a girl at my table asked me if I got my dress at BCBG, but really I got it at Bedo. As long as you stick with decent quality you`ll be fine. 6. I second guessed purchases. When tempted by a purchase I`d step back and figure out if I really needed it. If the answer was maybe, or no, I just moved on. 7. I didn`t go into stores if I wasn`t looking for something specific. I avoided the temptation. If I didn`t need to go shopping I`d do something else that made me happy, like read a book in a coffee shop, or go for a walk outside. That way I didn`t feel like I was denying myself.
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Travel
Florence: Italian Dream Part One
July 16, 2009 at 9:15 am 5
Recently I went on an eleven day whirlwind trip through central Italy with my boyfriend. We had tossed the idea of going to Italy around, but like so many things you chat about them, and then you get lost in daily life….until I found an amazing seat sale. I was able to book the flights from Toronto to Florence return for $577 per person ($500 US)….amazing! So with tickets in hand we constructed a brief travel plan and then adapted it as we went along. To make my trip diary a bit more digestible I'm going to post from each city for the next few days. First, let's start with... Florence We landed in Florence in the morning, and spent the entire first day walking around the inner city. I was jet lagged and running on fumes so I kept on drinking double espressos thinking it would perk me up….it didn’t work that well, but luckily I didn’t get too jittery. Florence as a city didn’t wow me, it was totally over-run with tourists (7 tourists for ever resident!!) and I didn’t really feel like I was in Italy since I couldn’t find any Italians outside of people that worked the tourist industry. We spent two days in the city, and I felt exhausted from walking all day and dodging the throbs of people. The best place to visit was the Uffizi museum. It is a very cool building and the art is outstanding. It’s a place that you could go into every day for a week straight and still be wowed. We were able to reserve our tickets through the receptionist at the hotel, so we avoided the mile long line-up outside. Thank heavens! There’s nothing like going on vacation only to wait outside in the burning sun to see fun stuff – no thanks! The most memorable thing about Florence was the restaurant we went to on the last night, Castello di Sabbia(they don't have a website, but here's a map with reviews ) . The restaurant specializes in fish and truffles and you won’t be disappointed. It’s owned by two guys, one of them a former police officer who speaks English and is very friendly. To get to the restaurant you need to take a taxi, which the owner will reimburse you for – a very nice perk indeed! The drive up is great, because you get to see where the actual Italians are, and it really sets the tone for the evening. After you’ve traveled for twenty minutes via taxi you find yourself in this beautiful cabana style building perched atop a hill with a view of the nearby area, and once you eat the food you will FALL IN LOVE. We had an antipasto appetizer, a pasta course and then a steak with truffles that was absolutely perfect. I still dream about it. We actually went back on the final night of our trip, and the host greeted us like we were returning friends. It was the perfect send off. Stay tuned: I'll blog about Tuscany next...and that truly was a dream... For more Italian travel journals read posts on Tuscany and Rome
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