Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Flytrap on Etsy

Flytrap was recently featured on Heartsy, and after eyeing their store for a while, I jumped on that heartsy deal and immediately picked up their poppy dress! The dress is normally 34$ + shipping, and I got it at a steal for the 12$ heartsy deal for 30$ store credit, and paid the remaining 6$. So 18$ for a 38$ dress. When I went back on etsy just now to leave feedback, the dress is now selling for 38$ + free shipping ($2 if your in Canada/Intl). The seller sent me the invoice for the remainder of the money very promptly (within a couple of hours) and send me another email later that evening saying it had been shipped! Wow, talk about a quick TAT! It was purchased on April 15th, and arrived here in Canada today (the 27th.)
They're envelopes are the cutest thing; I'm a lucky duck! But being made out of paper I would be worried if I had ordered this during winter.

It arrived neatly folded in pretty green tissue paper. No invoice was included.

The dress is dark grey with Flytrap's Poppy design screenprinted.

The dress only comes in one size, which is supposed to fit up to a size 6/medium. I'm pretty tiny and normally wear a size XS, and 0 in jeans, and was honestly nervous when I unfolded it from the tissue paper. It does fit pretty snug, I'm happy I didn't order a smaller size. I don't any other american apparel items, so I don't really have anything to compare it to...but I was a little unhappy that the edges of the dress are all raw/unserged. Especially around the bustline, I can see it shredding/ripping pretty easily. I guess AA dresses are meant to be worn without a bra though, which I don't plan on doing. I think the cut is pretty flattering though, and the material is quite comfortable. It's casual, but with the style of the sleeves it can be transformed more dressy/chic.

What do you think? Did you pick up anything from the store during the Heartsy deal? Anything in the store caught your eye? I'm wishing I picked up another deal, the cloth napkins are quite pretty!

Tree Bark Earrings

OruAka is currently being considered for an etsy deal! Hopefully this post will give you some incentive to purchase. In the meantime, you can stop by his shop using my coupon code listed a few posts back. I had William custom make me some earrings and buttons, and picked up a few other things from his etsy store.

Each set of earrings and my hair clip arrived packaged in these little boxes. I really think that's a nice touch! I'm going to be giving a pair to my mom, and the boxes make them perfect for gifts.

The buttons are my favorite, especially the toggles! I use them for cowls, cardigans, etc... Even when added to a simple knit, they look fabulous. The buttons are all uniquely shaped and sanded to a nice finish. The majority of these are Cedar wood, and the round ones at the bottom are Spalted Oak.

Aren't these gorgeous?? I'm going to have to pick up more items in Dogwood, the grain is just so beautiful.

I love the rustic/earthy feel of these tree bark earrings.

These are Elm wood, again, isn't the grain gorgeous?

And finally, a hairclip made from Dogwood! I'm already wearing this in my hair.

If you're looking for gorgeous handmade buttons & wooden jewlery, I highly recommend checking out William's store. I've purchased from other etsy sellers for wooden items, and will continue to be a repeat buyer with OruAka. The quality is outstanding, he is a pleasure to deal with, and is always very quick to reply to convos if you ever have any questions or are interested in a custom order! Please check out his shop, and support handmade.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Why I will continue to purchase from Sony.

 I read a lot of novels (when I'm not reading nursing texts) and after a lot of research I ended up purchasing a Sony E-reader on Boxing Day of this year. Most of the e-reader's have their own formats (Sony, Kindle, Kobo, etc) but recently there have been free programs for download to convert the files to be compatible with your reader. My main reason for chosing the Sony, was because it can play both Microsoft Word documents and Adobe PDF files. This is very helpful for me, because all of my lectures at school are in pdf format, and I take all my notes in Word. It's very handy; whenever I have a few extra minutes, or am on the bus to school, I can pull out my reader and review my notes... Or the Southern Vampire Mysteries (the Sookie Stackhouse novels, on which the tv series True Blood is based upon) which I'm hooked on and eagerly awaiting the upcoming novel!

Everything was going fine in Sony World until a couple of weeks ago; I turned on my e-reader to read a bit of a novel with my cup of tea before bed, and the screen showed up with thick black streaky lines all over. I turned it off, and the "loading" logo was still showing up, along with the black streaks. Now, I am very careful with everything I own... my ereader has its own little case (and a seperate, thicker one for when It's in my bag or being transfered to my boyfriend's place) and has NEVER been dropped, so you should be able to understand how upset I was. My boyfriend did a lot of research, and although there was no physical damage on the screen of the reader, quite a number of folks on various forums have had problems with the ink portion of the device cracking from the inside. I wonder now if it could be from our cold Canadian winters, but some people have mentioned that the e-reader's are supposed to be kept in a "lying" position at all time, to prevent the ink layer from bending which would result in a crack. That still does not make sense to me, because, when you read a book, especially sitting down or in bed, do you ever NOT tilt the book or hold it upright?

I called the guy at the Sony Store the next day, he told me I'm still under the 1 year warranty, and to come down so they could ship it off for repair. When I came down to the Sony Store, the guy I talked to on the phone was out for lunch. I explained my story yet again to another man, who took one look at it and told me "it's physicaly damage, you may as well purchase a new reader because Sony will not replace it." That was enough to get me going, because, first of all, if I only purchased the thing 6 months ago it should still be covered, should still work, and if Sony had decided not to fix it, there was no way I would ever re-purchase a sony item ever again. After lots of hassle, the other guy returned from his break and again tried to tell me I must've dropped the reader and broke it. But, where was the damage on the screen? The only damage I can see that was inflicted to the screen would be related to the pen device used to chose your books and turn the pages. If that is enough to crack the screen, the e-reader must be easily damaged, then. I've had my nintendo DS for YEARS and have not had any problems with denting or cracking in the screen, if with angry Zelda battles.
Anyway, after even more hassle and arguing with these men over a good hour, they filled out a form, boxed up my reader and told me not to keep my hopes up, that Sony would most likely not repair my item.

Now here we are, two weeks later. I received an notice this past Wednesday saying my E-reader was on route from Toronto. Even with holiday hours, the e-reader reached me today safe and sound. I opened up the package to find a Brand spanking new e-reader waiting for me. Needless to say I was very happy, and left them prompt feedback on their customer service site. I did however mention that although I will continue to purchase Sony products, it will not be from the clowns at my local Sony Store location. I haven't heard back from them yet, but I received a generic "Thank you for your time!" email & a 25$ off of a 100$ purchase coupon, which my boyfriend plans on using to buy new speakers. I'm still unsure whether Sony will contact me regarding their reps, but I'm very glad to have my e-reader back to me. The only downside was that I had to re-transfer all of my books to the new reader (they are all kept on a Sony Reader program, similiar to that of I-Tunes which is also very convienant!) I am hoping I will not have any more problems with this ereader, but either way, will continue to recommend Sony items, including their e-reader.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

OruAka on Heartsy

Hi guys! Please help get my friend of OruAka get featured on Heartsy! Please vote "Yes definitely" for him!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Sahara FOTD

Happy long weekend everyone! Of course it just had to rain here, as if the flooding weren't bad enough. So I decided to cheer myself up with my new Brazen haul! I'm really loving my new lipgloss, Forbidden Fruit. It's quite opaque, and I love coral!

Eyes: Brazen Ice Queen, Sultra Sahara collection, Defiant, Avon Smooth Minerals mascara
Face: Brazen Frisky blush, Amber foundation, Hi-Def Powder
Lips: Brazen Forbidden Fruit lipgloss

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Spring time with Brazen

I'm always excited to get mail, but even more excited when I see the Brazen stamp!!! This was a fairly big haul for me this time around, and I was dying for it to arrive. As always my package arrived intact, neatly taped, and wrapped in colorful tissue paper.
I ordered 3 of the upcoming Spring scents in Thai One On, Summer Lovin' & La La Lychee.
Thai One On: smells of coconut and lemongrass. The scent reminds me of tanning lotion (the good stuff) with the lemongrass note. It's not too overpowering, and the notes REALLY compliment each other! Totally yum!
Summer Lovin': this one is a mixture of fruit, I get mostly mango, grapefruit and orange. It smells tart and sweet at the same time.
La La Lychee: I've never smelled lychee before this, but it smells really good! It's like a mix of tart fruit and underlying florals.

Super cool!!!

I ordered lipglosses in Bronzed Bombshell (darker and more golden than Au Natural), Forbidden Fruit (bright opaque cantelope/orang mix) and Muse and Make out for my Mom who kept stealing my glosses! Sandi graciously included samples of her new Gummie Glazes; these smell AND taste delicious! The differences in the glazes are the color of the sparkle. The gloss is a clear color with differeing colors of sparkle, depending on your 'flavor', i.e. Orange and Cherry.

And finally, the Sulty Sahara swatches! I was so excited when the sneak peaks for this collection were posted; the shades are all colors I could see myself wearing on a daily basis.
From L to R we have: monsoon, oasis, sultry, swelter, mirage


No flash.

Aren't they all gorgeous?? I can't even pick a favorite. I can't wait to work with these colors, all of the shades appear as if they will all compliment eachother. I think this is a great collection to try from Brazen, especially if you love naturals (but with a twist!)

With my order, I also received a bunch of tickets. Initially I was quite confused, until I read the bright orange paper in my package.. All month long Brazen will be hosting draws for various prizes, and with every item ordered, you will receive one ticket! Winners wil be announced on the FB fan page and blog.. Hurry down to Brazen for your chance to win some fabulous prizes!! Brazen is currently only on ArtFire, and she is working on getting her own domain up and running!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Homemade Cinnamon Applesauce

If you read my last post, I nagged you into dragging out your blender and experimenting with fruits and vegetables. Today I decided to make some applesauce to take with me for my morning snacks at the hospital. Oh god - I don't mind store bought applesauce, especially when I get a craving for it, but this is just delicious!! The cinnamon really adds a nice touch. I think this would work really well on top of pancakes... Or on it's own if you need a sweet fix!

2 apples, cut up with skin left on
1 ripe banana
1/2 cup water (recipes I found recommended to use 1 tbsp of water; but it depends on how thick you like it. I found mine too be too thick/almost like baby food, so I added a bit more water. Start with a little bit and then add as you go!)
1 tsp cinnamon

Throw it all in your blender, and then package it up in some cute tiny containers to take with you for snacks. I'm sure this would be a great snack for little ones, too!

Green Smoothie, anyone?

Recently I've become obsessed with making meals in my blender! It all started with my Nrsg Skills teacher bringing us a huge bottle full of a "green smoothie." I'm sure most of my American friends have heard of green smoothies, but It's a fairly new trend here. My instructor and I were discussing the concept, and what it boils down to is - a lot of us don't really chew our food. Take lettuce for an example, we take a couple of bites then swallow, right? To get all the health benefits and nutrients from lettuce (and every other fruit/vegetable with phytochemicals and antioxidants) you need to grind it down to fine pieces to rupture their cell membranes and get the full amount of nutrients. Also, a lot of people aren't eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables as it is, so smoothies can be a great way to add them slowly to your diet.

The best way to eat/drink green smoothies are to incorporate them into your usual diet. I've started drinking a huge water bottle a day (about 3 cups) and then am slowly working my way up. I've found I'm a lot less hungry during classes, and I don't crave salty/sweet foods as much. I'm also starting to crave more greens, and get excited at looking at recipes, crazy huh?! My biggest concern, is that you either have to slowly incorporate the green smoothies into your diet and then increase, or drink just a little a day. Your stomach is naturally acidic, and depending on the amount of vegetables and types of fruits you are adding to your smoothie mixure, your stomach pH will change over quite quickly. My instructor was off a few weeks ago because her body was "detoxing," BUT she also didn't eat a very healthy diet to begin with. Another thing is, your body becomes accustomed to the smoothies, & if you stop for a few days/accidently skip your smoothies your body will notice; you will most likely up with a headache. Now, I think the idea is great, but I think if you are taking enough to work/school with you to snack on, your body is benefiting and you don't really need the 2L+ a day of the stuff. I just wouldn't recommend detoxing by going completely off your regular diet onto green smoothies. Our bodies need everything in moderation, so make sure you're still getting your grains, protein, and milk!

And now what exactly is a green smoothie, or what goes into it?? Basically, all you need are a couple of fruits, a cup of vegetables, and water or milk. For vegetables, my usual choices are: spinach, kale, celery, lettuce, watercress. The rule of thumb for newbies is to start off with about 1/2-1 cup of spinach and work your way up to a higher ratio of spinach to fruit. (You do need to rotate your vegetables.) I didn't exactly care for spinach before making these smoothies, but I CRAVE it now! Honestly; I asked my boyfriend to try a smoothie I made last night, and he loved it! After I told him it had spinach in it, he did make a funny face, but agreed it tasted good and the spinach is virtually unnoticeable (unless your using large amounts.) Another turn off for some people, is the bright green color of the mixture. My huge water jug is black with a printed design on it, so if that bothers you, that could be an option.

 Here's an example of a simple recipe to get you started; combine all these ingredients into a blender then let her rip! You want to get it it to a fine consistency:
1/2 cup strawberries
1-2 ripe bananas
1 cup spinach
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 1/2 cup water

My smoothie for tomorrow is a mix of mango, strawberries, banana, spinach and water. As you get into it, start experimenting! A friend of mine adds oats to hers, and you could substitute water for milk, or try almond milk/soy milk. There's all sorts of recipes and books out on the net for green smoothies. I've been loving the Smoothie Handbook and Incredible Smoothies who have recipes for other types of raw foods as well. Please let me know if you end up trying one!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Gettin' Cheeky with Brazen

Wow. This has been an extremely long and overall stressful week. Her's hoping the upcoming week will have something better in store for me.
Today's FOTD is centered around Brazen's Cheeky eyeshadow. I LOVE this color!

Eyes: Brazen Ice Queen, Luxe, Cheeky, Oath, Deviant
Face: Brazen foundation in Amber, Hi-Def Powder, Frenzy Blush
Lips: Brazen Au Natural

I've been wearing the au natural lipgloss this entire week, and have hardly made a dent in the pot! The color is the perfect neutral for me. And I love the mint taste!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Heartsy: Dennis Anderson Soap Company

A while back I purchased the Heartsy deal for Dennis Anderson's Soap (13$ for 35$!) I was excited about this deal because the Anderson Soap company is one of the largest Etsy B&B sellers. I ordered the same day (April 7) and the shop was shut down for a few days to deal with the overwhelming overload from Heartsy deals. Even so, my order shipped on April 9th, and arrived today! That is EXTREMELY quick shipping for US --> Canada! Shipping fees were $8.00.

I ordered body butters in Satsuma and Chocolate Drizzle, body lotion in Levo, and soap in Sea Salt Caramels.

Chocolate Drizzle: the scent isn't overwhelming, and it smells just like Chocolate. Very similiar to Quintescential's chocolate fudge scent which I adore. The body butter itself is very thick and creamy, and comes in a 1 oz size. For $6.00, I don't think the price is too bad (especially with the Heartsy deal) but I will be using these as a travel lotion for my hands. I use a lot of lotion to the extent where one jar would probably last me one full body use...
Satsuma: This one is a little too perfumey/strongly scented for my taste. It smells mostly of grapefruit and orange to my nose.
Levo: The lotion is primarily made with cocoa butter, and thus smells of delicious cocoa! Honestly, it smells just like an Aero chocolate bar. This lotion comes in a 4oz bottle size (at the same price of the body butter) but is thinner in consistency. I do think it's a really nice lotion though, it's not too light (even for my dry skin!)
Sea Salt Caramels: On first smell is smelled dead on like my herbal Throat Coat tea, just like licorice. I get tiny notes of caramel mostly on the bottom of the bar. I will probably let this one sit for a while before I decide what to do with it.

Here's a comparison for the body butter size, it fits into my tiny palms. I'm honestly not 100% sure if they're made with a base, but from the ingredients listed in the etsy listings, they look to be completely homemade. It's also important to note that both the butters and lotion are vegan! The ingredients are listed on the Levo lotion & soap label, but not on the butters.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Blaze on

I haven't raved about Brazen Cosmetics for quite some time, eh? ;)
A order arrived today of some random deals I got in on (3 3g pots/$10), mystery grab bag deal, and a 20g pot of Hi-Def I needed as my little pot has been running low. As always, my packaged arrived neatly packed with tissue paper and love!

Aren't these the cutest bags ever?? I love cupcakes!

The entire order! I grabbed a 20g pot of Hi-Def, Perfumes in Girly Girl & Dreamy, 5g pot of Luxe, Oath, Frenzy blush, Cheeky, Blaze lipgloss, and the new Au Natural lipgloss. The Dreamy perfume smells like a fancy store brand, and has a very comforting scent.

As always, ingredients are fixed on the label of every pot!

Now for my rave about Blaze... The moment I opened my package I HAD to try it on! Isn't it just a hot color? It looks totally retro, a bright opaque red-orange. It can definitely be toned down, but I think it would look super sexy with winged eyeliner. I'm just bare faced here!

Frenzy, Oath, Luxe, Cheeky, Main attraction, Jet setter glitter gel, Blaze, Summer LE: Au Natural

Frenzy, Oath, Luxe, Cheeky, Main attraction, Jet setter glitter gel, Blaze, Summer LE: Au Natural

If you haven't already, go on over to Brazen's facebook for info on new products and all sorts of crazy deals!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Package from Rosella Resin

My package from Rosella Resin on etsy arrived today! Shipping was extremely fast (within Canada) took three days. As mentioned before, the owners Jessica & Gwynne have great C&S. They responded promptly to my convos, my package arrived bubble wrapped and neatly packaged with a thank-you note. I'm very pleased with their shop and quality of items, I will definitely be a return customer!

Both my bangle and ring arrived packaged in a baggie, with a tag from their shop I felt was a nice added touch. (Also love their logo!)

The bangle! Aren't the feathers just gorgeous? The bangle is made of resin, which is hard to describe, but it's very lightweight. The items have very small air bubbles, proof that they are individually handmade. The bangle measures 7.5 inches around (size small in the shop), and fits my tiny wrist fairly well (I could almost use a smaller size :P)

A view of another feather on the bracelet.

The lovely ring! The red feather is even more stunning in real life. Again, the ring is very lightweight, so even with it's size it's not heavy at all. This ring is a size 6, and fits on my ring finger (second from the pinky.) The ring sizing is fairly accurate, I believe my diamond rings are all a size 5.5-6. I might consider purchasing a 7 next time, to have it fit my index finger.

Side view of the ring.

Just gorgeous!! I am extremely pleased with both of the items I purchased! I always encourage people to buy handmade, and with all honesty, have you ever seen jewlery quite like this? To me it's worth every penny of the Heartsy deal I purchased, although I would gladly pay full price for orders to come!