Thursday, 15 June 2017

The final weigh in...

This is it guys.
The end.

or the beginning...
but it's the end of my ability to blame the baby for cravings and fast food sprees.. lolol

My final weigh in, I'm actually quite impressed with it!
With a record weight earning in the beginning of my pregnancy, I got myself under control and was able to stay under my goal of 200 pounds. like just barely... but I did it!

My final weigh in is 190 pounds respectively.
and I'm quite pleased with that.
 

Now mind you, the emotions have been rolling all around about it.
I mean, I feel HEAVY, I can't breathe, I can't walk, I look at my face in the mirror and see all the puffs and chins, its hard enough growing a baby but the amount your body changes while growing is scary..
 
I have 60 extra pounds on, I have acne, skin darkening, dry patches, stretch marks (yeah two more showed up on my stomach dang it, I know that's still mild but I was being optimistic lol), aches, pains, changes you don't even want to know about!
 
Some of them will go away but a lot of them are here to stay. Its only normal that you would feel down about it at least mildly down, off and on throughout your pregnancy. Everyone acts like you should be thankful and joyous 24/7 but the truth is you're not.
 
I am my own human outside of the baby making and this time period is hard, it is a sacrifice, and its ok to feel that weight burden. (HA. pun of weight vs physical weeeeeeeeight)
 
So the other day I was feeling it hard, I was hating my appearance and cranky about the pain and then I got an update about this story..
 
 
I don't know her personally but have some connections to her family and their story just makes me bawl.. These stories break me down, bad, don't even ask me about the poor women who just passed after welcoming twins.. story here, she also wrote a blog here.
 
so although I'm entitled to my sorrow, pregnancy is hard, body changing is hard, I own that.
 
and there are nasty people out there who make you feel worse, I don't know whether they do it on purpose or if they are wired a different way and actually think its acceptable to judge others, or worse don't even notice that they're so hateful/hurtful..
don't even get me started about the media vs pregnant women....
 
I try not to wallow in my self pity for too long.
Its pointless and wasteful.
I have my health and I'm about to have 2 adorable kiddies.
*I will never stop preaching about how women don't get enough credit for bringing these lives into the world. Seriously, godly miracle, science-y miracle, whatever way you cut it, it's a crazy miracle.
 
so cut yourself some slack!
Gyming may be hard, it may never be what it once was for me but its gonna happen and I'm determined to drop at least half of the weigh gained..
that's an appropriate goal, right?!
because that's my goal. hahaha
 
 


Other than that I am SO ready for this to be done, but I am SO starting to realize how real it is.
 
My hands have been sweating ALL DAY.
like not just a little sweating, they're like dropping tears of sweat!
kidding, but seriously clammy. LOL
 
I can talk my mind into forgetting about what's about to happen but my palms speak the truth.
I feel 100% like this Eminem song...
 
 
Let's please pray for no vomit on my sweater tomorrow!
I'm not allowed to eat from now on so I'm hopeful there will be nothing to come up, but I hadn't eaten while in labour with Elliott and some how I was sick for what felt like eternity.
 
Ok enough shop talk.
I will try to update Instagram stories as much as possible tomorrow so follow along there if you are interested!
 
and I will see you with my newest blog assistant soon! XOXO
 



those lips! ^ LOL


He always says baby 'in dere' and points to his belly. ^


 
The last ice cream..
 
JK.
Ice cream will 100% still be on the menu, I will just try to prioritize it into a healthy moderation, LOL.





Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Canada Day 150 nails + GIVEAWAY...

This post includes 2 of my favorite things..
Nope, scratch that 3 of my favorite things..

Nail polish, Canada and FREEBIES!


If you watch my Instagram stories you know the other day I picked up CND Vinylux in 'Cream Puff' and I was so excited to try it and not only try, but test out a Canada Day mani!!
 

I go full on for Holidays and I'm especially hyped up about this Canada Day with it being the big '150' and it will be the first holiday with 2 kids AND Elliott's just really into anything celebratory these days, so its going to be fun.
 

Luckily I partnered with Nail Polish Canada just in time to add a little maple leaf to my mani..
(For a funny story about how I first found out about Nail Polish Canada scroll to the end + a giveaway!)
 
^ This was just a quick test run to get a feel of how the Nail Vinyls would apply..
I'm going in for my C-section at the end of the week and I'm not allowed to wear polish! ugh.
so for Canada Day, I'm thinking a more elaborate mani with some accent nails and DEFINITELY a silver glitter!
 
I'm thinking I'll apply the glitter polish with a sponge like I did at Christmas, see glitter mani post.
and I will do a combination of the maple leaf decal AND you can use the empty space stickers (see above) as a stencil to paint in or glitter ;)
 
I also really like that there are a couple of sized Maple leaves, I didn't notice until I applied.. so you can match the size to your nail size.
 

So that's the C-day plan!
I have all my sparklers ^ ready to go!
I have a stash of sparklers and JUMBO sparklers.. they're just from the dollar store so you should grab some while you can!



AND
since Nail Polish Canada is so great they're letting me give away vinyl's to the first 10 lucky Canadians to read this post!




Go to:
 
and use code:
UY1D1WVPG7XG


for your own totally freebie Canada Day Vinyls!
 
 
 
If you're one of the lucky ones, you can tag me and Nail Polish Canada on Facebook or Ig so we can see what mani you come up with :)
I'm just really nosy as to peoples beauty creations, so give me a tag or inbox haha!

and being nosy is kind of how I found out about Nail Polish Canada in the first place!
Whenever I'm out and about I will compliment random people on their makeup, nails, fashion,  whatever.. I just think its nice, if you like something why wouldn't you tell the person. lol
 
So at least 5 or more years ago, I was shopping at Winners in Halifax and I went to try on some clothes in the fitting room, I noticed the lady working the fitting room had a really pretty coloured polish on so I told her I loved it and she replied:
 
"Thank you!!!! I actually got it off of Nail Polish Canada! Have you heard of it?! YOU HAVE TO CHECK THEM OUT, THEY HAVE SO MUCH POLISH"
 
This was before my blogging days and I hadn't heard of them so I vividly remember saying to myself over, and over, and over, Nail Polish Canada, Nail Polish Canada, Nail Polish Canada..
so I wouldn't forget the website. LOL
*Clearly this was before making a note or sending it as a text on your cell phone was a thought...
 
anywhoo, that's my Nail Polish Canada story..
Have you heard or ordered from them?!?
and what's your Canada Day plans??
 
 
 



Monday, 5 June 2017

The Body Shop's Youth Liquid Peel, all it's cracked up to be??...

I received two hundred messages about this little green beauty so I'm finally putting my thoughts on blog!

Even though I'm a tad conflicted..
I personally really like it!
but I can see it not being for everyone..
if you're a super low maintenance beauty lover with decent skin, maybe skip this and stick to a regular exfoliant but if you're ok with an extra step or feel your pores are clogged/you go heavy on the foundation regularly, this IS FOR YOU.

Let's start at the beginning!





^ Elliott is SO nosy.
I try to be 10000000% patient and understanding since he's seeing basically everything for the first time.. /really understanding things but MAN. lololol
 
just as an example, he really loves watching America's funniest home videos, and luckily so do I.
unfortunately it's not as much fun watching when you have to in very detailed, detail, explain every single thing that happens... because he likes to know "what's that?" "what are they doing?" "where are they going?" "why did they go there?" "what made them do that?"  .........cont.
 
I love his thirst for knowledge.. but I'll be happy when I'm not his sole teacher. hahah
anyway...
 
 
I saw the Drops of Youth, Liquid Peel on The Body Shop's Instagram stories about a month ago,  the model used it on her skin and I knew I wanted it!
 
It was unlike any product I owned so I needed it.
The model pumped a drop onto her dry skin, massaged in and her skin magically peeled away.
but did it work like that for me, you ask?
 
YUP.
it basically looked exactly like the model had shown!
 
I removed my makeup with a miscellar water, allowed skin to fully dry, then pumped two beads of gel onto my finger tips and massaged circularly onto my cheeks.
(I did the cheeks and nose area, then used a new pump of gel on forehead.)

 
This is what the skin looks like after a minute of massage ^
 
the liquid starts to 'dry' and you'll see your alleged dead skin etc. start to form.
 
really quickly your skin starts to feel dry and those dead clumps seem to start sticking to your peach fuzz, this is when I panic and rinse face with water but that only seems to partially solve the problem.
 
see below:


even after washing with water and drying you'll have some sticky pieces that refuse to leave your skin.
 
DO NOT rub vigorously...
trust me, I tried and it did nothing but add redness and irritation.
 
The first time I used the peel I was quite disappointed, seeing my skin immediately after and having those little pieces stuck like that was discouraging.
 
I posted about it on Instagram and a few people said this is a common result with peels, they said it doesn't flawlessly remove every speck for an immediately smooth look, but they will fall off shortly and your skin will feel fresh. 
 
After I showered the next morning I noticed the little flecks did fall off and my skin did look a little more 'glowy' than it had before I used the peel.
 
so I trudged on! 
but this time I added a few steps..
 
 
I started by removing my makeup.
then used the Youth Liquid Peel.
then washed with warm water and the Kate Somerville daily cleanser.
finish with a gentle moisturizer, like the Origins Drink up mask (technically a mask but I find a thin layer left on overnight is SO hydrating and non harming on sensitive skin)
 
Washing with a cleanser after the liquid peel got rid of a lot of those left over clumps and any remaining are gone by morning.


I was skeptical of the peels whole "this is all your dead skin, build up, etc!" claim.
 
I exfoliate regularly and take decent care of my skin so to lose that much extra gunk 1-2 times a week with the peel seems questionable...
 
so I tried it on the back of my hand this morning to see if the gunk would look any different ^
and I will say it took a lot longer to see the gunk form (as the back of my hand is normally always makeup free and clean lol)
 
also, the colour of the gunk was very white/clear and the junk that comes off of my face is definitely tainted with foundation/ more dirty looking for sure!
so that's interesting!
 
Final thoughts: 
 
- I really like this addition to my skin routine, my skin does feel more baby like fresh and I can also see a glow that wasn't there before. It just rids you of that old dull layer, without going too deep and leaving you with skin burn. (thankfully, lol)
 
- It didn't dry me out!
I was scared to use this 1-3 times a week! that seems like a lot for a sensitive skinned gal but surprisingly (followed by moisturizer) it didn't dry my skin out any more than a normal face cleanser/exfoliator.
 
- do not use in the morning!
just a tip, its best to use in a before bed routine and not immediately before a special occasion.. just stay on the safe side! at the very least you'll probably have some little bits stuck to your peach fuzz like I did.. so just avoid that at like, your wedding or whatever. lol
 
- the price is right!
after looking on Sephora for similar products, I am shocked that The Body Shop option is only listed at $25!
the others seem wayyy pricier and yield similar results (from what all my intel told me! aka IG messages. thank you girls!)
 
So that's that!
I'm pretty impressed and I'm not alone, check out my girl Samantha Jane, YouTube guru, and her May favorites!
 
 
See the Youth peel at 9:50 mark ^
 
I wasn't thinking to take some after photos of how my skins been looking but I'll post a couple of selfies below just to show that my skin seems to be doing well, I haven't had any major skin changes or break outs..
 
Its just been overall happy to normal skin!
 

^ with makeup
 

^ without makeup!


so let me know what you think!
I hope this blog post is easy to understand.. sometimes explaining things like skin care on paper can get confusing but I tried to simplify it. (like, peach fuzz gunk stuck.. is there an easier way to write that! lol!)
have you tried a gel peel??????
will you try this one???


I will continue to use and right now I can see myself repurchasing but you know I love trying new things so I can't commit to this exact brand!

but the price is 100% on point so unless I REALLY feel the need to try something similar to compare that after use peach fuzz stickiness situation.. I'll probably stick to the youth peel!








Wednesday, 31 May 2017

How to give the gift of thrift...

I received so many nice baby shower gifts, it almost makes me feel guilty!
I mean this is our second baby so it should have been a sprinkle instead of a shower but people went all out, it was so sweet!

Maybe I will post to IG stories to show what we got.. is that weird??
It's not me bragging it's just my honest fascination with other peoples lives that would make me want to see what people gave.. so maybe you readers want to see.
anyway, we will see but I'm leaning towards a quick IG story haul!

I will say we got mostly gift cards and baby girl clothes, which is AMAZING!
I really had no idea what to say when people ask if we need anything.
no, we didn't NEED.
the baby will be fully clothed with all of Elliott's hand me downs but there's something so cute about her having her very own 'girl' wardrobe, I am so thankful for all those who were smarter than me and gifted them!

gift cards, blankets, books, clothes (especially if you're having a babe of the opposite gender!), diapers, we received all these things and they're perfect! so many cute things.. It confirms why I stay away from the baby sections, because I would be in deep with the shopping sprees! lol

but my cousin had a way of gifting that I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVED.

You all know my thrift shopping obsession is real and I just can't get past buying new when there are so many second hand shops with the cutest things floating around.. especially kids wear!
Kids grow SO fast, do not waste precious dollars on full price!

so my cousin knows my love and she has an equal love, so she gifted us with a thrift shopped baby gift!
and I'm OBSESSED.

thrift giving may not be for everyone and you'll know the time and place to give the gift of thrift but I really hope some of you take inspiration from this, and gift thrift more often!

This actually isn't the first thrifted gift I've received. (not including my immediate family who gives thrifted all the time)
My sisters friend gave us a baby gift for Elliott that was all thrifted!
she was a teen at that time and money is pinched for everyone, let alone someone working part time min. wage so she gathered up all kinds of gems from the thrift stores and they were some of Elliott's most worn items! I really appreciated the thought behind it as well, going to the second hand stores and thinking of us while there was just too sweet, she didn't have to but she did.

so anyway,  no pressure lol
I loved all my gifts equally and I cannot thank everyone enough.

but if you're looking for a way to make thrift more chic and add a bit of a twist to your gift, take a note from this card  >>>>>>........
 


SO cute!

 
a little peek of the thrifted finds!
and a homemade tutu.. omg stop!


Pop it into a cute basket with some tissue atop and voila!

the gift of thrift!
beauty on a budget!
and a happy earth friendly deed!



am I alone in loving this?!?!?!?!?!
lolol someone confirm this is genius!

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Low key baby showers..

I'm really not a shower person, I am especially not a 'my' shower type of person.
I didn't have a bridal shower, I didn't even have a bachelorette party (something I would be more enthusiastic about.. girls night out/drinks!;))

I don't believe in social 'rules' and I'm not a traditionalist..
i.e do whatever you want for your wedding/baby/life!
 
and yet here we are lol..
I was surprised with a baby shower so may as well show it off!

Something I can appreciate is good food and décor, I'm also a fan of games as long as they're not mandatory.. loosey goosey is how I live my life!

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I still cannot believe I'm having a girl..
I 100% do. not. believe. it.
and I will not believe it until they place that baby in my arms..

so seeing everything in pink is shocking, it doesn't feel like my baby.
I mean, I'm still adjusting to being a boy mom.. so that might have something to do with it, I was convinced with Elliott that I would have a girl and I was convinced this time would be a boy lol.

anywhoo, everything was sparkly and PINK! so that's fun!
and yes my sisters dining room is actually painted purple.. that was not added for the shower! hahah

also, I didn't take a single photo!!
so this is not 'blogger' quality but that's what you get when you rely on random party goers iPhone snaps. I am great at photographing EVERY minute when out with Nick/Elliott but see me at an event and my camera isn't even on the radar, I guess its a good thing - live in the moment, yadda yadda ;)
but I wish I could hire a professional to follow me around, these photos would've been SO good taken from a trained eye.
 
 
All you need to feel fancy is a few cake displays and silver platters.
I swear, thrift shop for them and you'll get your monies worth ten fold!
 
I keep a cute collection of cake stands on top of my cupboard and they look like décor even when not in use.

 
^ my girlfriend make me these adorable cookies, love!
 

 
I'm not sure if this is the exact stuffed strawberry recipe used above but I googled it and this one is super simple/similar if not exact - stuffed strawberries

 
A little tutu on your wine glass makes all the difference!

 
^ all the prizes were wrapped in pink/gold or in cute paper bags (I'm going to say that wrapping paper is from winners/homesense 100%!)




 
^ straws are also my addiction!
they make everything look so much cuter.. confession: I cannot drink a beverage in my own house without a straw.. I actually purchased a ton of reusable straws for Elliott's birthday party two years ago. See here, I use those straws, EVERY DAY.





 
^ a baby 'shower' tho..

 
^ Obvious game
 
The Clothes Pin Game
pink clothes pins, everyone starts with one and when you hear 'baby' mentioned you get to steal that persons pin. whoever ends up with the most pins is winner!
 
*I was going to add pinterest links to games, but is it really necessary..
If you can't follow my direction, google baby shower clothes pin game lol


^ Same here! easy peasy!
 
Guess Mama's Belly Game
I measured my belly, then the yarn ball gets handed around the room and you cut a piece closest to the length you think I measured.
 
 
^ this one is probably the most fun! but also follows my 'not mandatory' rule because not everyone can pull off the baby bump ball carry lololing
 
Elliott loved this game and was mimicking it long after the guests left, he actually got pretty good by the time we went home. I'm surprised he had that much coordination in his little knees!
 

 
Tinkle in the Pot Game
so you place the bigger ball/balloon in your shirt (expecting belly!)
then you hold the small ball between your knees and waddle to the vase/jar to try and drop the small ball in.
 
its tough because of the 'baby belly' and you want a smallish opening to the vase/jar you use so the faux mama can't really see where she will be dropping the ball.
 
All I could think during this game is there should be a way to play this with water balloons so when you drop the ball it would be your 'water breaking' lololol, funny right?!???
 
I did some googling and found some variations of this are called
"tinkle in the pot" or similar, because of the non stop peeing!
 



^ so this is me... lol at there being no photos of me!
I was pretty much scooped up every free second and was chatting the whole time so the camera didn't make an appearance,
 
 
^ me and El




^ Elliott looked pretty darn cute and I think he enjoyed himself thoroughly,
he is a people person and doesn't shy away from much!
 

He did miss his nap that day and I'm shocked he was as pleasant as he was.
 

we came home, had a nice movie/snuggle then both passed out!
 

Thanks to everyone who came and showered Baby Clarke with love! XOXO




















Friday, 26 May 2017

How to strengthen your hair: Bumble and Bumble Repair blow dry

So, by now you think you know everything about my hair.. am I right??!
You pretty much do, I will admit!

I am a hair-o-holic, I love changing it and trying new things.

and I'm pretty impressed with how much my hair has grown over the last year!
How much does your hair grow??
I googled it and I think I'm on the pretty decent side of growth.
There are so many factors that can change it, but hair growth can be a daunting task so I wanted to keep my hair as healthy as possible to grow that baby out!
 

This is one year of growth!
I had some very short layers in that little bob so I'm impressed my long lob has turned out as good as it has!

 
I've had regular trims and colours all year long, as well as having had tape in hair extensions attached 50% of the time!
 
Tape in extensions can take a toll as well, you really have to be hair savvy and diligent if you plan on getting tape ins, they're not for the care free hair girl/guy.
 
I've heard some horror stories about people who have had tape ins and then all their hair breaks off at the tape or they lose a large percentage of hair after removal.
This should not happen, but anything is possible.
 
I also noticed this story came from someone who looked as if they had been box dying BLACK for quite a while..I'm not a stylist nor scientist, so I shouldn't place blame but I am so obsessed with healthy hair and if you are box dying, please HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE.
 
I want to say skip Tim Hortons and save those twoonies for salon visits but as a couponer, I know salons are hard on the wallet and not everyone wants to invest in that area. so that's fine, but girl get a hair mask, leave in conditioner or coconut oil it up!
 
anywayyyyyy,
this is about the product I added recently that has made a difference!
 
You know this is me:
Wet Brush - best brush imo.
it's better than my specialty brush for tape in extensions and it's a must have for kids!
 
Hair Mask - Love the Morroccan oil, been using the L'oreal (below) and like.
Also referred to me recently Redken extreme repair mask, I think I will try this next because I've recently revived my love for Redken and forgot what a classic it is!
 
Hair Oil: Moroccan, Hask or coconut.. users choice!
 
 
But my most recent add on is the.... Bumble and Bumble, Repair Blow dry.
serum/cream... ?? It's like a cream lotion IMO.
 
This is a sample I received forever ago! I never take sample hair products seriously because they're so small I always think it's not enough to get the full effect.
 
but with this one I was wrong!
which is why I recommend the smaller 2oz bottle ($17) if you are thinking about purchasing, because this sample .5oz has lasted me MONTHS! and I use on the daily!
 
so at first I used and used this and I didn't see a difference, it's a funny product because it doesn't really change anything noticeable to the naked eye.. at first...
 
It's a really light product, won't weigh you down (use small dime size amount, focused mainly on mid to ends) and it only adds a small shine.
 
So after a week, I said on IG stories I didn't think it was for me!
I like to see immediate results and I hate adding another product if I can't see it working immediately.
 
But since I had the sample I decided to use it to empty and the funniest thing happened...
I started to notice a difference!
 
as healthy as my hair is I have always had minor breakage around my neck, I'm a pony tail girl and I remember as early as 6th grade having a layer of shoulder length hairs that hung at the base of my neck.
 
the hair elastics broke them and no matter the product I used over the years, these baby hairs just broke and had to be bobby pinned.
 
All of a sudden about a month or two into the Repair blow dry I noticed I didn't have ANY broken hairs anymore.. my hair felt thicker and stronger.
 
I can honestly roll my hair into a bun and tie the ends under each other so its a LITERAL 'top knot'
*I don't recommend tying knots in your hair... lol
but I am guilty of doing this to wash my face when there's not a hair elastic around (it doesn't stay long term but the knot holds long enough for me to wash my face then magically falls out like one of those bun falling mesmerising videos lol)  
 
 
 



so that's my newest hair healer!

I'm going to pick up a full size (smaller one lol) when this is up but I checked with my Sephora insiders and they said ask for a sample in store so you can try it before you buy it!

I will probably stock up on samples too, I spend enough at that store and recommend enough products, they owe me ;)




in other news.. do I cut my hair SHORT like the above photos or do I grow, grow, grow like this photo???

I don't know what to dooooOoooo!
I am SO torn!

the super short is easier to dry and style but the bed head doesn't look that cute so you have to commit to washing more often.

the long is such a pain to dry and style but the integrity lasts longer so you can get more days in without a re-wash, plus cute BUNS!

WHAT DO I DOOOOOO?????!