Links to Peruse to Cure the Monday Blues: December 16th, 2013

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This weekend Toronto got snow -and a lot of it! Everything looks so beautiful and Christmas-y, but it sure is coooold.  With less than 10 days until Christmas the countdown is really on!

Here are some of my favorite links from this past week:

Check out the incredible things this artist does, using snow as his canvas (mymodernmet.com)

The 2013 youtube Rewind -I’m still trying to figure out who most of these people are… (youtube.com)

These historical celebrity look alikes are pretty cool (justsomething.co)

This guide to the movies you missed in 2013 will be handy next time I don’t know what to watch (buzzfeed.com)

How to wrap a cat for Christmas  (pawbonito.com)

The incredible scenes this artist creates in her studio will amaze you (boredpanda.com)

The creepiest things kids said…is also kind of funny…but mostly really creepy (buzzfeed)

A Russian snowboarding crow (youtube.com)

Who knew Kristen Bell had so many awesome tats? (funnyordie.com)

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Makeup Mania

Tomorrow I’ve got a photo session to update my actor headshots.  In an effort to save money, rather than hiring a makeup artist, I’ve opted to do my own makeup for the shoot.

I used up all my points at Shoppers Drugmart and picked up some new stuff!

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In preparation, I’ve been watching hundreds of minutes worth of youtube videos to perfect my skills. So far I’ve learned that there are a million different makeup brushes and a lot of conflicting information about how things should be done.  I’ve also learned that make up videos are kind of hypnotic.  Here are some of the tutorial videos that proved to be most helpful (and mesmerizing):

For Eye Makeup: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPqySxcuSbo

For Natural Makeup: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yxvmTCVcft0 I love all the pixiwoo videos- they get bonus points for being British and having great accents. But be warned these videos are a bit addictive, so many looks!

A full Makeup Lesson from Bobby Brown: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78QDpdBbLUs

I don’t wear a ton of makeup, but I love to play! lots of experiments ahead.

UPDATE:

Here’s a sneak peek from Saturday’s photo shoot with Denise Grant (who is absolutely lovely by the way!)

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Gift Idea: Mega Movie Mix

When it comes to movie snack food there are 3 main food groups: popcorn, chocolate and candy.

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The combo of the flavors and textures of popcorn, Peanut M&M’s and Sour Patch Kids is pretty much the best.  If you haven’t tried it, you probably should.

So here’s a gift idea that’s perfect for teachers, neighbors or co-workers, it’s inexpensive, easy to put together and amazingly tasty! The perfect pairing for any Christmas movie marathon.

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I mixed up a batch and packaged it up in cellophane bags from the trusty dollar store. Add decorations and a hang tag and voila! The perfect gift to keep on hand!

Places I’ve Been: Maui

I can’t believe that it’s already been 6 years since my boyfriend surprised me with the most insane Christmas gift ever -a trip to Hawaii! When I opened the box with a swim suit inside I wasn’t expecting to find an itinerary for a flight leaving in 10 days underneath.

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It was one of the best trips I’ve ever taken. Maui, may very possibly be, the most beautiful place on earth.

Some of the trip highlights included surfing in Lahaina with some help from the instructors at the Royal Hawaiian Surf Academy

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Snorkeling in the Molokini Crater (I have to admit I was so nervous I hardly slept the night before) but it was incredible! So much to see.

A catamaran took us out into, what seemed like, the middle of the ocean and since the boat can’t get to close to the crater, you have to swim in! Once you get there and you have your mask on, it isn’t too scary at all.

We saw so many bottle nosed dolphins and a whale (I can’t remember which kind) on the way out. It was pretty incredible.

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We splurged and spent one night at the Sheraton Maui Resort on Kaanapali Beach. It was pure luxury! Upon arrival we were greeted with real floral leis and the balcony of our room opened out onto a view of the beach.

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It was such a wonderful trip! so nice to re-live it by putting together this post.

Makes me extra excited for my upcoming trip to Mexico!

The Perfect Gingerbread

ImageEvery year my mom makes tons of amazing Christmas treats. They’re all delicious, but what stands out as my very favorite, are her gingerbread cookies.  They are AMAZING! Soft and spicy and not too sweet.  I could easily eat an entire tin full of them.

Over the weekend I asked my mom to help me whip up a batch of this old family recipe:

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As you can see from the photo, this recipe has been well used! I especially like that it says “makes lots”

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Of course the best part about gingerbread cookies is decorating them.

For frosting we (my mom) made a royal frosting, she makes this without a recipe, but she estimates the following measurements:

1 egg white

8th of a teaspoon cream of tartar

1.5 cups of icing sugar

splash of lemon juice  (or more depending on how stiff you want it to be)

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I highly recommend adding this recipe to your Christmas baking.  It’s a classic. For me, it wouldn’t feel like Christmas without them!

Links to Peruse to Cure the Monday Blues: December 8th, 2013

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One of my favorite teas is Yogi Tea’s Egyptian Licorice Mint, it’s caffeine free (always good to have one of those kicking around) and each tea bag offers words of wisdom to help get your day off to a good start.

Speaking of getting off to a good start, here are some of my favorite links of the week to brighten your Monday!

These pictures really help put planetary sizes into perspective.. Whoa! (themetapicture.com)

Incredible silhouettes created from heaps of trash (thisismarvelous.com)

This craigslist ad for a used yoga mat made me laugh! (mindbodygreen.com)

A father’s reaction to his daughter’s impossible Christmas wish list (deadspin.com)

A funny collection of gifs of animals being jerks (ebaumsworld.com)

Another collection of gifs of the greatest dogs (buzzfeed.com)

A Disney artist Imagines Wicked as an animated film (i09.com)

Skyline Throw-Pillow

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I made this Toronto skyline throw pillow for my boyfriend to take with him to Portland (where he’s currently living for work) to help remind him of home.

First I used a pencil to mark out the sky-line (I used a photo for reference) then I used a stiff, flat paintbrush to apply the black fabric paint.  It took a couple layers to make the lines nice and solid since the fabric has some texture to it.

I’d like to do some more experimenting with this kind of thing!