Lush Review

I haven’t done one of these bad boys in a while. It had been a long time since I walked into Lush, but today I peeked my head in and found an array of Easter themed treats that I needed to spoil myself with. Of course, I haven’t used any of them yet, I’m hoarding them until the holiday. But do not fret, little bunnies. I have other Lush treats that need to be reviewed, so let’s get on with it, shall we?

One of my absolute favorite Lush products is their Buche de Noel cleanser, but tragically, it’s only available during the Christmas season. Never fear, I found an excellent replacement that makes my skin feel equally good and smells just as fresh (maybe even fresher). Let me introduce you to Angels on Bare Skin.angels1

This is a solid cleanser made with clay, ground almonds, and lavender flowers which help to gently polish your skin. Now, I’m usually one for rough, sandy exfoliates, but Angels works better than anything I’ve ever tried. This cleanser smells like lavender and roses. Both of their flowery oils help balance skin and reduce redness. It’s a great treatment before bed because the lavender tends to help you sleep as well. An all-over beauty investment.

I find it rare when a bath bomb is both entertaining and relaxing but Big Blue manages to accomplish both. Mimicking the ocean, Big Blue takes sea salt and seaweed by the handful and fills your bath with the delights of being in the ocean. Well, a very clean, bathtub-sized ocean. The blue dye from the powder actually colors your water the color you wish the ocean was. The bomb itself smells like lavender (I’m sensing a theme here…) and lemon which are a very relaxing combination. Every ingredient in this product helps soothe your skin and leaves it feeling extra soft and smooth. I would go as far to say that Big Blue is one of my all time favorite bombs.tumblr_mcdqw7viTm1r2xeja

I was feeling extremely experimental when I purchased one of Lush’s solid shampoos. Yes, you read right. Solid shampoo. The store offers an array of different solid shampoos with varying scents, colors, and purposes. The one I was really drawn to scent-wise was Seanik. I think the only reason I liked it was because it looked like Big Blue, but in shampoo form.

Seanik has Irish moss seaweed and Japanese nori seaweed which are supposed to make your hair silky smooth. It also includes sea salt which promises to give volume to your hair and lemon oil to make it shine. The fragrances included in the product are mimosa, jasmine, and orange flower absolute.url

I love the scent of this shampoo, but everything else falls a bit flat for me. No pun intended. I think it promises too much for being a vegan shampoo. It gives a surprisingly good lather after rubbing the bar through my hair a couple of times, and the lasting quality of the bar itself if unbelievable. Lush promises it will last up to 80 washes! And another benefit is that it’s great for travel–the size of your palm, and you can take it in your carry-on because it’s not liquid. That being said, it doesn’t really work wonders for my hair, but I appreciate the idea of it.

Feelings, Stores

So Long, Safeway

I’ve had a strange attachment to the grocery store Safeway ever since I moved to Canada. I think it’s because my home grocery store of choice was part of the Safeway chain, but it went under the name of Dominick’s. Dominick’s was a 2 minute drive from my house and, frankly, my happy place.

That grocery store gave me so much comfort. When my husband was visiting my hometown I took him inside and he said, “Oh it’s a Safeway” to which I replied, “Um no it’s Dominick’s.” But he was right, I just didn’t know it.

When I moved to Victoria, I found a Safeway close by and when I walked in, I almost cried. It was almost an exact replica of Dominick’s except for the fact that it was smaller and more Canadian. But still, it gave me a great feeling of comfort and familiarity. Any time I felt homesick, I could just enter those sliding glass doors and pretend I was in Dominick’s.CHANEL_Paris_AW_15-55

Recently the Safeway chain was taken over by a different company. When my mom told me that the Dominick’s by our house was closing down I had to have a moment of silence. That place had been such a staple in my youth. And then the harsh reality hit me–the Safeway in Victoria would soon close down as well. And it did.

My security blanket is gone. But it’s okay because I don’t need it anymore. I will survive without it because now my little corner of Canada is familiar to me. The whole town is my comfort. However, there will always be a place in my heart for Safeway.

Now I can totally relate to that saying, “If you love something, let it go.”



Lily’s Literature #14

Hello ladies and gents. I’m back with another list of fab books that I’ve managed to read. This time around I would describe the three books as the good, the bad, and the ugly. It’s pretty fitting, and hopefully you’ll understand why.

I guess we’ll start with the bad since I go in chronological order of when I read each book. I picked up 1984 by George Orwell because I always feel bad when I miss out on a story that everyone seems to be familiar with. Whenever people bring up 1984, I mention how I loved Animal Farm. And people are like, “Yeah but 1984 is so much better and different.” But is it?1984-cover

In his novel, George Orwell writes about a dystopian society ruled by Big Brother. Everyone is constantly being watched and controlled. There is a lack of freedom in all areas of life. Even thoughts are successfully under surveillance. The story follows a man named Winston and his memory of how life used to be before Big Brother, cameras, and hidden microphones. He has so much rage against the setup and wants to break free. One day fateful day the chance presents itself to Winston and his love interest and they decide to act on it.

I wasn’t really wowed by this book. I’ll admit that Orwell’s idea was way before it’s time and from a creative standpoint, very unusual and impressive. He really made that society come alive. However, I just wasn’t into the characters or the long, drawn out descriptions of Oceania’s politics. Some of it went over my head and a lot of it bored me. Overall, the book didn’t wow me, but I can appreciate the uniqueness of Orwell’s idea at the time.

After that I read something really great. White Oleander by Janet Fitch. I remember my mom reading this book when I was younger because Oprah featured it on her show. I’m glad, years later, I finally got around to reading it myself. Actually, during the middle of the book, I reached out to Janet Fitch on and told her how much I loved her book and she wrote a very kind message back. It was a delightful surprise.Book-White-Oleander-Cover-janet-fitch-5516513-545-800

White Oleander is the beautifully tragic story of Astrid Magnussen and her mother, Ingrid. Ingrid paints her bohemian lifestyle in an alluring way for her daughter. Everything about her mother is enchanting. But sadly, most of Ingrid’s life is focused on herself and not on her sweet daughter. After dating a man for a short time and being suddenly dumped, Ingrid seeks revenge, which costs her freedom, and Astrid’s lonesome wandering.

I really enjoyed the descriptions in this book. They were so fun to read. So many pretty words and scary scenes, yet all so real at the same time. I thought it was a little bit lengthy, but I couldn’t see it being shortened either. Just an all-around good read. I’d highly suggest this one. Especially since Janet and I are bffs now.

Today I finished reading Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. Every so often I like to throw a Young Adult book into the mix. I thought this story was intriguing, but it’s an ugly topic.ThirteenReasonsWhy

Thirteen Reasons Why is about a teenager named Clay who received 7 cassette tapes in the mail with no return address. He listens to them and hears the voice of the girl from his school who recently committed suicide. She sent out 7 tapes with thirteen sides naming all of the reasons (and people) that caused her to end her life.

It’s actually a really creative plot but I ended up getting bored a little bit towards the end. I kind of struggled with the girl’s story and how she didn’t really help herself or let other people reach out to her. There were a lot of names being juggled around which made it kind of hard to follow. The thing is, don’t think she should’ve blamed people for her own choice. But it’s a tricky subject so who knows. It had a lot of potential but didn’t totally deliver in the end (for me, personally). BUT one cool add-on to the book is the youtube site hannahsfriend13 where you can listen to a recorded voice read off the tapes. Kind of rad and spooky. It really brings the book to life, which I appreciated.

Have you read any good books lately?

Feelings, Work

Stressed But Well Dressed

You know those cutesy little framed quotes meant to hang in your kitchen that say “Stressed is just desserts backwards!” Yeah, I hate that. It’s like, okayyy so if I eat a brownie my stresses are just supposed to flutter away? If anything, I think that would add to the feeling of being overwhelmed. Oh great, now I can’t eat dinner because I had a stupid brownie because this sign in my kitchen basically told me to.

I’m really just overreacting. I started nannying full time-ish and I’ve found that I have no time for myself, no time to clean, and no time to workout. I just want to sleep forever. How do people have kids and read books? Or have kids and write blog posts? Or have kids and vacuum? I honestly don’t understand. I don’t even have children of my own and I’m finding it hard to fit everything I want to do into one day.

Me, after work.

Me, after work.

I do like the whole earning money aspect though. And sometimes, okay a lot of the time, the kids are pretty cute. And I’ve gotten an avalanche of compliments on my gold sparkly TOMS after hanging around playgrounds so much. They’ve been referred to as “princess shoes,” jus’ sayin’.

So no, it’s not all bad. One of the terrifying things though, is when the parents of other children on the playground think I’m one of them. “NO!” I want to scream. I’m going to look wayyyy more ragged and tired when I have kids. The fact that I could already pass as a parent scares me to no end. Also, I would hope that my future children would somewhat resemble me. How can people look at these kids with huge brown eyes and thick hair and assume I’m their mom? Does not compute.

I digress. If you haven’t seen me around the blogosphere lately, this is the reason. But I’ll try to pop my head in every so often to see what’s up. Is anything stressing you out lately?

Beauty, Holidays

Green Queen

Okay so remember when I promised that I would continue blogging about green things until St. Patrick’s Day? Well that day has come and gone and I only ended up writing one green-themed post. Shame on me. Shame on me for doing other things besides sitting on my computer. Welcome to my blog of broken promises.

Anyway, I’m going to make it up to everyone/the 3 people who read this by giving you an avalanche of green things to feast your eyes on. Make sure to tell me some of your favorite green items as well!

I love this billowy green skirt:8d4611ccca8d35e1776598c575391285

But I’m also a sucker for this mermaid inspired pencil skirt:1d7b1627d78e6675366121375ec39c3c

One of the most memorable green gowns was worn by Keira Knightly in Atonement. Never forget:tumblr_m60areSfIW1rxzc4ro1_1280

I am also partial to this palm print:8e04ba01bc81abed37c0fc2112654c09

And basically anything palm leaf themed:8dc09063a296c2191613b165aed1eded

A backyard filled with big, green topiaries is now my newest obsession:f9adca9447490d3f25c8483ca25e76d9

However, I’m unsure if smelling like my backyard would be a good or a bad thing. Nevertheless, I applaud Lush for making this item smell exactly like the lawn:url

I wouldn’t mind decorating my ears with these beauties:414e7db15e8c7fe6013b88ff38d5814c

Or painting my nails with this pretty peridot shade:0be1ada0b910bab8c84efa1615c55e5b

I could drink these green tea lattes all day. With a splash of raspberry, they’re surprisingly addictive:green-tea-starbucks-latte

This mint limeade looks thirst quenching during warmer weather:cd185efc30e259ba2c8cbf998d87be40

I could see this green Persian-esque rug being a good addition to any sparse room:fd1eea6a1db59aa163d51aacb9f4a59a

Unless this little green-eyed beaut threw up on it:b6f59db9794e21465f35b48e9ef5859b


Green-ify Your Life

In preparation for St. Patrick’s Day, I’ve decided to inspire the masses with a couple of ways to add a little green to their lives. In the final days leading up to St. Patty’s/Paddy’s Day, I’ll be featuring one category per post. Today’s category is art.

If you don’t have art in your house, you’re definitely gross and uncultured so you should probably fix that pronto. If you’re into the whole minimalist thing then just by a book of art and put it on your coffee table. Little tip: make sure you’re familiar with the works in the book before you let any company over.

It’s easy to be impressive when you have great copies of famous paintings in your house. Sometimes it’s best to stick to “safe” artists that everyone will recognize. This will not only make you look good, but it will also make your friends and family feel like they’re smart because they recognize the art on your wall.

Degas and Monet have the most green pieces to choose from, are the most pleasing to the eye (in my humble opinion), and are likely the most recognizable. Any of Monet’s watery bridge pictures are safe. Japanese Bridge (The Waterlily Pond) is probably his most famous work but if you want something slightly different than the norm, I’d go with Irises II.

The Japanese Bridge (Waterlily Pond)

The Japanese Bridge (Waterlily Pond)

Irises II

Irises II

Degas’ The Green Dancer  works nicely in a feminine household. Same with his Rehearsal of the Scene. These impressionist works along with Monet’s would really grab attention in a sparse room. However, something like Manet’s Lilacs in a Vase has the same effect without stealing the show.

The Green Dancer

The Green Dancer

Rehearsal of the Scene

Rehearsal of the Scene

Lilacs in a Vase

Lilacs in a Vase

If you like plant life, may I suggest these botanical framed prints? I have some sketches from a botanical calendar that I framed (okay my mom framed them for me) and hung on my wall. They’re low key yet sophisticated in their own way.

Not my wall, but you get the idea.

Not my wall, but you get the idea.

Van Gogh has plenty of works to chose from. Sticking with still life, his Vase with Roses is a good, unique choice that not everyone will recognize off the bat. His painting, Irises, is also a good choice as well as his Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear if your goal is to intrigue/horrify all of your guests. But I would stick with something like Cineraria in a Flowerpot just to play it safe.

Vase with Roses

Vase with Roses



Self-Portrait with a Bandaged Ear

Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear

Cineraria in a Flowerpot

Cineraria in a Flowerpot

If you’re the type who doesn’t have time for classic paintings and portraits I would go with something a little more fun. Maybe this cover of The New Yorker magazine from June 1960. Everyone likes a little bit of tennis, right? If not, maybe try this sweet and somber French cover of Amelie. Oui? Maybe you’re the bizarre type and would prefer this cover of Bazaar magazine. Scary lady? Check. Green butterfly? Also check.

The New Yorker Magazine 1960

The New Yorker Magazine 1960

Amelie Cover in French

Amelie Cover in French

Bazaar magazine cover

Bazaar magazine cover

Lastly, if you’re into the ocean then these might be right up your alley. The ocean is both masculine and feminine, so pieces with this theme would be perfect in any home. Take Lia Melia’s awesome wave paintings. I love Songs of Melusina 4. If you like the female form then I would go with Clare Elsaesser’s Married to the Sea or Raphael Kirchner’s Mayflyes. But if mermaids and bathing beauties aren’t your thing, you might like the simplicity and realism of George Dmitriev’s The Moon and the Sea.

Song of the Mel

Song of the Melusina 4

Married to the Sea

Married to the Sea



The Moon and the Sea

The Moon and the Sea

If you don’t like any of the above mentioned works, you’re wrong and I hate you.

Judging, P0wning N3wbs

A Connection I Wish I’d Missed

I was walking aimlessly downtown around 3pm when I passed by my husband’s work. I asked him if he wanted to go for a quick coffee since the sky was blue and he probably wanted an excuse to leave the droning of his office. He came down and we went to this little place across the road called Street Level Espresso.

After walking in and ordering (one Americano for him, one Tea for Sad People for me) we sat down and smiled. It’s not everyday you get to share a sweet second during the busy work day. Our moment of bliss was cut short by an 84-year-old woman’s voice. I know her age because she said it 3 times out loud. I also know she worked in a factory for 50 years because she casually mentioned it thrice as well.tumblr_mhak7tJEgc1s4xhulo1_500

After Paul swallowed the rest of his drink to the sounds of this woman’s voice talking over the coffee machines, I told him it was fine to leave me. I’m usually the first to inhale food or drinks, but my tea was so hot I couldn’t gulp it. As he left, I readjusted myself so I was facing the bar of the shop instead of the back of the store. Just because I hate people doesn’t mean I have to look like I hate people.

The 84-year-old woman, Mary, gasped when she saw my feet. “I LOVE YOUR SHOES! THEY’RE BEAUTIFUL.”

Toms Rose Gold Glitter Women's Classics Shoes_01

My “beautiful” shoes.

“Ohh uhh, thanks. Yeah, they’re kinda fun.”

“I once bought a pair of sparkly shoes downtown for 150 dollars. They aren’t comfortable so I don’t know when I’ll ever wear them. I couldn’t wear them in the factory, that’s for sure!”

Come on tea, cool down. 

“Look at that picture of a chicken on the wall! Who would ever want that picture? For 100 dollars! Hmph!” She said, staring at it.

All of a sudden a taller man, Zeke, came into the shop whom Mary greeted with excitement.

Do they boil their tea with lava?

Mary kept on talking to Zeke while I burned my mouth numerous times, sacrificing my body in order to free my mind. When I finally finished, I rose and strode to the door. “It was nice meeting you.” I said.

“Oh, meet my friend!” She said, motioning to Zeke.

Oh come on.

“Hi, I’m Lily. Nice to meet you.” And I’ll probably never see you again ever. Why is your palm so sweaty?!

“Hi, Zeke.”

“I guess I’ll see you around. Mary, right?” I said.


Congratulations on your first time being outside and interacting with people, Mary.



Bathroom Stall Poetry

Whilst inside a women’s bathroom stall on Friday night, some beautiful words jumped off the wall and spoke to me. I want to share them with you.

Eat Pray Love shut the f*ck up.

Ur mom is hot

(a drawing of a daisy)

I see you.

Jen was here.


Thank you for joining me. Those words reached out and grabbed my soul.

Clothes, TV

Red, White, and Blue Oscar Apparel

It’s a challenge for me to watch one of my country’s favorite pastimes from a lesser, more embarrassing location. And the pastime I’m referring to is the judgement of people who’ve achieved thespian greatness. Attacking people from the privacy of your own home is the true winter sport. Sorry Sochi winners. Combine it with live tweeting and I’d consider you an athlete.

I couldn’t help noticing that my country was calling out to me through Oscar ensembles. So much red, white, and blue! Granted, they could have been calling out to people from France, The United Kingdom, Russia, Norway, Australia, Cambodia, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czech Republic, Iceland, Laos, etc, etc, etc. But I just have a strong feeling that they were trying to signal me.

Jennifer Lawrence really stepped out of her comfort zone by choosing another Dior gown to sport at the Oscars. This one was pleasant, but doesn’t hold a flame to her dress last year. However, she did manage to trip in both of them. Is it just me, or are her falls a cry for even more attention? In some light this dress looked orange-y.

Pink’s ruby slipper dress was so unexpected and glorious. I think everyone was assuming she would enter swinging from the chandeliers, wearing a leotard, but she classed it up big time. Also, who knew she could sing like that?pink-oscars-1

Jared Leto is sporting a cute little crimson bow tie with his white tuxedo jacket. I was unsure about this combination, but I realized that if he chose to wear something normal, it would feel seriously wrong. Paired with his ombre beach waves, Jared managed to glam it up without being too strange.oscars_2014_jaredleto_650_15_1

Matthew McConaughney also decided to wear a white jacket on the red carpet which made him resemble a cute little busboy. I feel like Matthew and Jared made a pact to both wear white, hoping to please the Oscar gods. Luckily for them, it worked.movies-oscars-2014-matthew-mcconaughey-trophy

Kate Hudson really stole the show in her Atelier Versace gown. Like, stop. This dress is gorge. I mean, she hasn’t even done anything worth mentioning in the past 5-10 years but the girl knows how to dress.rs_634x1024-140302165209-634.kate-hudson-oscars-030214

I have to give some honorable mentions to Naomi Watts and Maria Menounos. They both wore chic white gowns that didn’t ask for too much attention, but were simply beautiful. Also, Maria Menounos shouldn’t even be there, but props on the dress.Naomi-Watts-Oscars-2014 oscars-2014-maria-menounos-red-carpet__oPt

Lupita Nyong’o’s ice blue ethereal number really did it for me. It’s possible that she won an award for that dress alone. She also had such a beautiful and eloquent acceptance speech–I’m certain she was inspired by her frock. Lupita is most definitely America/Kenya’s sweetheart.da78d970-a285-11e3-b834-ef0e1167164d_Lupita-Nyongo-back-dress-oscars

Jason Sudeikis wore a blue tux on this big day, which I applaud because I’m a fan of navy. However, I unapplaud because of the black bow tie. I just have trouble with navy and black mixing. Sorry, I’m not sorry.1393805319_476193135_olivia-wilde-jason-sudeikis-467

Sandra Bullock’s Alexander McQueen dress looked terrible during the televised interview I tuned into. However, the photos online make it look pretty damn good. I also thought her hair was delightful.Sandra-Bullock-Oscars-2014

I have to applaud Amy Adams’ dress solely for the fact that didn’t show her side boob. Congrats on figuring out how to flatter your body, Amy. x700

I think my favorite dresses of the night were Charlize Theron’s, Kate Hudson’s, and Lupita Nyong’o’s. Did you watch the Academy Awards? Which outfits did you like?


Lily’s Literature #13

I sped through these last three books. They all seemed to keep my attention and progress quickly. I mean, the fact that it’s been raining a lot here might have something to do with it as well. When it rains there isn’t much else to do besides read and clean. And we all know that I don’t do the latter.

My mom recommended the book The Secret History by Donna Tartt to me. This one being much slimmer than her recent release, The Goldfinch. The story takes place in a small private university town in New England. The main character, Richard Papen, travels there from his home state of California looking for a change of scenery and life direction. Having studied Greek, he applied for the course and met 5 strange students that he would get to know intimately. As his university career continued, Richard was met with a darkness that he couldn’t escape, all thanks to his peers.29044

I really liked this book. There were areas that seemed a little dry in my opinion, but I’m extremely annoying when it comes to books keeping my full attention. However, the way it was written, the various east coast accents and descriptions made me feel like I was fully enveloped into their world. I also appreciated a lot of the Greek, Latin, and classical references because, believe it or not, I was forced to take Latin for 6 years. So what I’m trying to say is that I know what true pain feels like.

I picked up The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan next because a.) it was short, and b.) I really like books that take place in Asia. I was a big fan of The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck, and Snow Flower and the Secret Fan written by Lisa See. Check those out if you haven’t already done so. The Joy Luck Club is essentially a group of four women who joined together in San Fransisco after immigrating there from China in the 1950’s. There are different stories told through each of the women’s eyes–stories about their childhood, adolescence, and eventually adulthood. Paired with them are the more modern, American stories of their daughters. 7763

I liked the way this book was written. I enjoyed comparing and contrasting the behaviors of the mothers vs their daughters and the mothers vs their own mothers. That being said, it was hard for me to keep all of the stories straight. There were 8 voices overall and I kept having to revisit past pages and chapters to make sure I had the right person in mind. It might have been easier for me to balance less people. Regardless, the stories still left me with shivers.

And lastly, today I finished the book Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I had heard a lot of good things about this one. So much so that I felt confident recommending it to a friend before I had even picked it up myself. The story is about 26-year-old Louisa Clark who lives in a little tourist town in England. After suddenly getting let go from her job, she lands a temporary position taking care of a quadriplegic man. Their unique friendship causes them to see life differently.Me-Before-You-Cover

I don’t want to ruin any of the book, but it’s pretty predictable. I mean, it’s great, entertaining, and surprisingly funny. A perfect beach read that will likely turn into a chick flick. I know this because it’s already on IMDb so they must have something in the making. I really enjoyed reading it and felt like I knew the characters all very well, but I just can’t help but feeling like there’s something missing.

Have you read any good books lately?