Category Archives: Smorgasbord Sundays

Smorgasbord Sundays: I Love Dexflex Claire Scrunch Flats

Dexflex Claire Scrunch FlatsMy dad used to say that I have “Cinderella Feet” because they’re a size 5, and my pedal pushers are on the narrow side.

When I was a baby, apparently I used to kick my shoes and socks off, much to the frustration of my parents, who kept trying to put the cute shoes on my feet.

The funny thing is now that I’m an adult, it’s a challenge for me to get shoes to stay on!  ;)

Finding running shoes and boots are no problem, but when it comes to dress shoes, it can make me feel like Ethan Hunt, and it’s Mission: Impossible!

So imagine my delight and great surprise when, on a whim, I decided to try on some ballet flats from Payless Shoes, and they fit like a dream!

Since my first pair of Dexflex Claire Scrunch Flats, I’ve purchased several. And, thanks to the help of one of my readers (Frosso from Lacquer Me Silly), I managed to get plenty of back-ups of ones that, at the time, were trickier to find here in Canada because of limited quantities.

Payless Shoes has a website, but they don’t ship to Canada. It’s such a bummer because I seriously would be buying a lot more of these shoes if I had an online-shopping option.

Instead, I have to hunt down several different Payless Shoes store locations, and since my feet are women’s size 5, my section has slim pickings. That means if I find the Dexflex Claire Scrunch Flats, I need to buy them then and there, or I’ll miss out. (Looking over at the size 7 section, it’s stocked with several shoes in a given style. Lucky ducky!)

In this post, I’ll show you all the Dexflex Claire Scrunch Flats I have. I’ve been loving them so much because there are different designs and colours, plus they look good with dresses, pencil skirts, and even jeans – very versatile! They can look dressy or casual, depending on the style you choose and what you wear them with.

But the biggest plus for me is that my feet can fit into these shoes perfectly, they have a flexible and padded insole that’s very comfortable to wear all day, and the price is inexpensive. (They run $36.99 CAD, but you can often get them on sale for $29.99/$24.99 CAD. Plus they go for even less when you take advantage of their bogo sales.)

If you have tiny and narrow feet like me, give these a go. (Heck, even if you have wide feet, try them because they also have a wide width available.)

Out of all the styles, my most-worn pair is the standard black because it matches so many things, and it’s a no-brainer.

I find that the ones that scrunch the most (i.e. curl upwards) and have a ‘leather’ look are the ones that feel the most comfortable on my feet and are more durable because they don’t get as dirty as fabric ones that attract dirt. (Just a tip when you go shopping – look for those ones!)

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Erin Condren Life Planner 2014/2015 & Accessories

Erin Condren Life Planner 2014 & 2015In June, I pre-ordered the new Erin Condren Life Planner 2014/2015, and I opted for the 18-month version that runs July 2014 through December 2015.

It was a major splurge for me because the Erin Condren Life Planner I purchased is $50 USD. (Yeah, my wallet felt the burn like thighs on a StairMaster!) And it was an extra $5 to get the 18-month version instead of the 12-month version (January 2015 to December 2015).

You can customize your Erin Condren Life Planner to include a lot of bells of whistles, and that’s the advantage of purchasing it compared to a generic kind. This allows for greater self expression.

It has been since university that I used a planner, and now that things are getting really busy for me, I thought it was worth the investment in not only a practical planner, but one that also looks really nice. This is the Rolls Royce of planners, and considering that I intend to use this on a daily basis, I can justify the high price tag.

I’ve been going through a lot of traumatic personal things, and having this planner helps me to look forward to a bright future. It’s my little piece of optimistic sunshine that’s a daily reminder. To me, it represents more than just a way to organize my work, personal, blogging, and other schedules. It symbolizes the fact that I am setting goals to work toward to build and improve my skills and my perspective. Even when life throws curve balls at you, it’s up to you to turn things around and rise above.

This blog post contains tons of photos of the planner I chose to customize, as well as some Erin Condren and non-Erin-Condren accessories that I purchased to use with it.

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Father’s Day 2014

Daddy PhotoMy father is the best man that I have ever known.

Today’s Father’s Day, and it’s a yearly reminder of how amazing he was and how much I miss him. My mother and I will be visiting him at the cemetery later today.

There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about and miss my dad. So today is especially difficult.

He passed away in early 2010, just days after I turned 28. (I blogged about it here and here.)

Although I always cry on Father’s Day, I don’t want this to be a pity party. I want to take this opportunity to share with the world a glimpse into a moment I shared with my dad.

Note: The photo above is a picture of my dad when he was in his 30s.

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Goldfish Grahams Vanilla Cupcake

Goldfish Vanilla CupcakeWhen I go shopping, I am easily distracted when I walk down the aisle and catch sight of interesting or weird snacks. And I often want to blog about them, but then, well, I devour the whole package and forget to photograph them! (Oops!)

For instance, just last week, when I was browsing a European supermarket, I found  Snapea Crisps Harvest Snaps, which are baked wasabi-ranch-flavoured green-pea snacks that have the entire peapod intact. (The brand that makes them is called Calbee, which I’ve never seen before.)

Yeah, they might sound gross, but sometimes those kind of snacks intrigue me, and I just have to try them. (Plus on the package, it said that compared to regular potato chips, these have 50% less fat, are a good source of fibre, and are low-sodium. Also, 70% is made from whole peas.) That being said, I wasn’t eating these to be healthy! Haha, that’s like saying you eat potato chips to get your daily intake of vegetables – that’s stretching it like Gumby! (I ate them because the little kid in me was jumping up and down out of curiosity.)

If I ever see them again, I’ll blog about them, to the disgust of some, I’m sure. ;)

But for today’s Smorgasbord Sundays post, I have something much tamer, but still verrrrry yummy!

I was at Loblaws, and I walked by the cracker and cookie aisle. I literally stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the Goldfish Grahams in a new Vanilla Cupcake flavour!

Cupcake? Count me in! (Yup, in addition to enjoying fragrances that make me smell like vanilla cupcakes, I also like eating things that taste like vanilla cupcakes.)

In this post, I’ll show you a few photos of this new product!

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Smorgasbord Sundays: My Wreck This Journal Completed Circles Page

SwatchAndLearn Wreck This JournalRemember near the end of December in this post, I expressed my excitement about starting the Wreck This Journal project?

Well, since then, I’ve done a few more pages, and today, I’m going to share with you one of the Wreck This Journal activities that I completed nearly 2 weeks ago.

The instruction said to “Fill this page with circles”. I’m just going to call this the Wreck This Journal Circles Page.

At first, I was going to do a watercolour design with interlocking circles, but then I decided to try out the new Crayola markers I purchased specifically to use in this book. (You may remember me showing you how, unfortunately, the Sharpie markers I used initially bled through the pages. So, that’s why I had to buy new markers.)

The result of this Circles Page was very spontaneous and took me about 2 hours to finish.

All I planned was to use colours in the same order of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.

Instead of making it look like a literal rainbow, I thought it would be neat to draw circles of all different sizes and even circles within circles. (It ended up reminding me a little of what you might see under a microscope, haha, but way more colourful and psychedelic!) ;)

I also ‘hid’ a smiley face. Can you spot it?

This activity was so fun because I never really get to do arts and crafts much these days, but it’s so relaxing. While doing this, I was going through a pretty stressful time. (Actually, I’m still stressed out as I prepare to move to my new place.) So it was nice to do something like this that is calming and enjoyable. There’s no right or wrong way to complete this page, and you can just express yourself in any way that you see fit.

I encourage you all to check this book out. But, even if you don’t, it doesn’t mean you still can’t have fun. Just try it out on a piece of paper! The only advantage of having this book is that all your art will be bound together in a book. You could get creative, though, and use a 3-ring binder to store the pages of your artwork or even use a sketchbook instead. There are lots of options.

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Wreck This Journal & Quick Update

Wreck This Journal SwatchAndLearnIt has been ridiculously long since I did a Smorgasbord Sundays post, and you know what? I sorely missed writing posts that shared another side of me that isn’t beauty-related (like my knitting posts)!

Okay, so I won’t be able to go back to posting these each week like I did before, but I’m ready to bring it back every once and a while.

Things are very hectic on my side of the pond, and it’s not just because of Christmas coming (although that has made things busier).

I’ve been juggling a lot of things – a full-time job, freelance work, hanging out with my boyfriend, general holiday craziness, and a new chapter in my life!

I bought my first home! This is a huge deal to me because I’m done with renting and paying someone else’s mortgage.

I’m looking forward to it, even though there’s so much packing and a lot of work before and after the move. It seems very daunting right now since I’m in the initial stages of preparing for the move in 2014, but, as with any challenge in life, you just have to step up to the plate, take it on, and come out the other side. It’ll all be worth it in the end.

Now for the real reason for today’s Smorgasbord Sundays post! :)

I picked up Wreck This Journal by Keri Smith recently because I think it’ll be a fun, carefree project to relieve stress and tap into my creativity. (You may have already heard me mentioning this if you follow me on Instagram and saw the Wreck This Journal video I posted.)

The premise of the journal really speaks to me because the focus is on happiness rather than perfection. If you follow Swatch And Learn, you’ll know that philosophy is one I heavily promote because I believe in it and try to follow it in my daily life.

There are written instructions on each page that ask you to do a lot of random, fun things. You can be as creative as you dare, and there’s room for interpretation, which is what art is all about.

As you complete each page, you add your unique spin and personality. Check out YouTube videos about Wreck This Journal to see how this project really lets your inner artist shine.

I’m very excited about this project, and I’ll be sharing photos each step of the way. I’ll probably show pages on social media, but I plan to revive my Smorgasbord Sundays posts with some of my Wreck This Journal completed pages.

Check out the rest of this post to learn more about it and to see a couple of pages I’ve already worked on.

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Hello Kitty iPhone Case

Hello Kitty iPhone CaseWow, it’s been a long time since I’ve done a Smorgasbord Sundays post, hasn’t it?

Today, I’d like to share with you my new Hello Kitty iPhone Case!

You may remember that in a previous Smorgasbord Sundays post, I showed you the devil iPhone case. I really loved it, but after about a year of using it, the silicone stretched, and every time I pulled my phone out of my purse, the case would just fall off.

So, it was time for an upgrade, and after seeing cute 3D Hello Kitty phone cases, I knew I had to get it.

There were quite a few choices: blue, red, light pink, medium pink, and this pink I ended up going for. Haha, the funny thing was that even though I didn’t do it on purpose, I picked the same shade of pink that my devil case was!

In this post, I’ll show you some more photos of this cute case.

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