For NovemberNotes Day 19 the song is “Midnight” by Coldplay. I’m combining with Bikurgurl’s Week 46 #100WordWednesday Photo Prompt.
Credit: Mert Guller via Unsplash
The line at Starbucks was long and Seamus kept screwing up people’s drink orders. He couldn’t handle being on cash, making people’s specific drinks, and having his manager, Brian, berate his efforts. It was only his second day on the job.
Seamus needed to make extra money to supplement his student loans and buy a few presents for his family and girlfriend, Heidi. At the end of his shift he hoped he would be allowed back to work tomorrow.
He prayed that when he finished today and arrived home in an early twilight’s pitch-black, Heidi would be there with Chinese take-out. He dreamt about the lights from their Christmas tree gleaming as they talked about their respective terrible days and future hopes and dreams.
“In the darkness before the dawn
In the swirling of the storm
When I’m rolling with the punches, and hope is gone
Leave a light, a light on
Millions of miles from home
In the swirling, swimming on
When I’m rolling with the thunder but bleed from thorns
Hi, welcome to another interview for my biweekly interview series. I have been behind due to other projects so I’m having a special edition of my interview series featuring the lovely and talented Shivangi Singh from Minnesota in the United States, on a Sunday. Her blog’s link is here:Stories by Shivangi – Once Upon A Time . . .
1. Please Tell Us About Yourself?
I am Shivangi Singh from ‘Stories by Shivangi’ from Minnesota in the Unites States. I am a stay at home mom and I love to weave stories inspired by my surroundings. If you enjoy stories, films, and kids stuff, visit my blog, you will most definitely enjoy it.
As a child, I aways dreamt of writing books but with the development of technology, I have learned how easy it is to self-publish, now more than ever. I have managed to write, do some illustrating, and be the author of two children’s books that are available on Apple Itunes. They include the books below.
2. Please Tell Us About Your Recent Book? When Did You Begin Blogging and Writing?
My recent book Who Ate The Moon is about two naughty brothers Aala and Uja, who adore the moon. They steal the moon and through stealing it learn about the different phases of the moon. The book is educational as well as entertaining. Through my children’s books, I’m trying to make learning fun for kids.
I began blogging in January 2015 soon after my first little one was born. I have been a copywriter, journalist, and have won several awards in creative writing. The purpose of ‘Stories by Shivangi’ was to maintain my flair for writing. I was also feeling a little disconnected after moving to the USA from India, so I chose to start my blog to establish a connection with fellow bloggers, writers, and friends. Ultimately, my blog showed me the way to my dream of being a published author.
3. How is Writing and Blogging Meaningful for You? Where Do You Find Your Motivation and Inspiration to Write? Why Is Writing Important to You?
My blog and writing my books provide me with a much-needed creative outlet. It is my voice! I use this voice to entertain, advocate, and teach little ones such as my own.
My inspirations are my surroundings, my kids, and the latest news or current events. As a child, I loved story books and I want my kids to love reading as much as I do. Mothers are the first teachers’ of their children so it’s my endeavor to instill the love of reading and writing in them. If I write blogs and books, they too will understand the joy of knowledge. This is one of my primary motivations to continue my blog as well as having that creative outlet for myself to write what I would like.
“As a child, I loved story books and I want my kids to love reading as much as I do. Mothers are the first teachers’ of their children so it’s my endeavor to instill the love of reading and writing in them. If I write blogs and books, they too will understand the joy of knowledge.” – Shivangi Singh
4. Do You Have Any Particular Blog or Writing Habits?
I write on the go and on my smartphone. A sentence here and a word there. With two demanding little ones around, it is harrowing to write sometimes and that is why I try not to commit to too much writing at this time. As my kids grow up and depend on me less, I will devote more time to writing books and to blogging.
5. What Are Your Most Current Writing Projects On Your Blog or Otherwise?
As of now, I have not planned anything. I will just keep writing one blog a week! My projects have been my two kids books which you can access above. As I said, I try to not commit to too much with my little ones and their demands at the moment.
My book did get reviewed by Ritu ofBut I Smile Anyway, and I wrote a guest post for the site. I was interviewed by Ranjeeta of atrangizindagieksafaras well but have no future plans as of right now beyond blogging.
” [I]t is harrowing to write sometimes and that is why I try not to commit to too much writing at this time. As my kids grow up and depend on me less, I will devote more time to writing books and to blogging.” -Shivangi Singh
6. Can You Briefly Describe Your Writing Process You Went Through Writing Your Books?
It was quite challenging! I wrote the children’s books and created illustrations using inspiration by reading other books here and there. I had no professional help whatsoever while publishing and am proud to say I figured it out on my own. I kept reading DIY blog posts and forums and through them, I managed to publish my children’s stories.
Time was a challenge and so were the illustrations, but I did have an illustrator paint my cartoons in the first book (The Princess with Brown Teeth). But in my second book, I illustrated with the help ofPixton.com. My challenged of obtaining a visa was also a challenge so I couldn’t publish my books on Kindle. I was thrilled when my books were published on Apple, but then, I know many people with Android readers don’t have access to my books.
I did, however, put together a video on YouTube and did a voiceover of my books for readers who could not obtain my books through Apple. It did not come out as I had expected and I struggled on each step. I learned an enormous amount of information about putting together a video of my books in the process.
7. What Keeps You Going As a Writer? Do You Prefer Any Writing or Reading Genres?
Persistence and a love for writing are key, a person just has to keep writing no matter what. As well, I am absolutely crazy about fiction! I like to read poetry too!
“I wrote the children’s books and created illustrations using inspiration by reading other books here and there. I had no professional help whatsoever while publishing and am proud to say I figured it out on my own. I kept reading DIY blog posts and forums and through them, I managed to publish my children’s stories.” – Shivangi Singh
8. Do You Have Any Helpful Advice For Other Bloggers? Is There Anything Else You Would Like To Share With Us Pertinent to Yourself or Your Writing?
All my blog friends are doing great! I would advise them to be persistent and be better than their last post! As for having anything else to say, well, I think I have said it all😀
9. For Fun, What Are You Three Favorite Blogs You Follow, of Any Kind?
When I first entered the blog world, these were my favourite people. I continue to enjoy reading them.
My grandma is a grand old lady nearing a century. If you look at her, she may appear formidable in the beginning and then a ringing laughter would ensue, dismantling the image you had conjured up in your mind. The fact is, she is both formidable as well as light hearted. A unique, delightful combination!
Born and brought up in a royal family ( Kharsawan, Jharkhand), she has always had that regal bearing. She believes in maintaining distance from her kids, grandkids, great-grandkids as well as recently added a great-great-grand kid. And we are all supposed to behave in her presence. We rise when she enters the room and remain respectful in her presence.
During my childhood years, we lived with her, so, we had the opportunity to observe her from the closest quarters. I discovered her lighter side later in life. Initially, I was apprehensive of her. She commanded and the household ran according to her. But as I grew up, I discovered the lighter, fun side of her personality. There have been many instances when she would have us in splits.
Here is one such incident. One of our cousins was going to meet a prospective bridegroom. In arranged marriages in India, girls and guys are introduced by their families, they meet up, chat and then a decision is taken unanimously.
So, this cousin was both excited as well as scared before her first meeting. Our granny called her and said, “If you like this man, try to do little something to make him fall for you.”
We were seeing another aspect of our grandma. We all asked, “what?”. She immediately showed us how to woo a husband – “Look sideways at him and then look down… blush… look up again at him… look down and blush again. And then smile juuust a little.” We doubled up with laughter!
I don’t know whether my cousin looked sideways at the prospective groom or not but they ended up getting married!
(Sharing a picture of my grandparents)
I look up to my grand old lady because she always had the audacity to laugh at all challenges that came in her life. In her almost 100 years of life, she has seen many ups and downs. All her peers are long gone now, times have changed but she has remained strong.
I adore her because she is quite broad-minded, childlike and her booming laughter lightens the most serious of situations. A great devotee of Krishna, she follows what the playful God says – to celebrate life as it is!
Thanks so much to Shivangi for filling out my interview questions! I even gave Shivangi the wrong interview questions (the one’s for blogs that are causes) and she still did a brilliant job. She is an inspiration as a writer and a mother and I wish her good luck in the future with her family and writing. Here is the link to here homepage one last time: Stories By Shivangi
Thanks for reading this interview and if you are interested in being interviewed as a writer/blogger or you a blogger writing for a specific cause (or both), you can reach out to me on myContact Page. See you on Monday for my regularly scheduled interview 🙂
Gia gritted her teeth in frustration, trying to complete her last final exam before the Christmas holiday. She was a University student in her thirties. Gia’s husband, Tyler, worked as a Lawyer while she finished her business degree part-time and raised two children.
Gia threw her school bag in her car and drove to the mall for Christmas shopping. At the mall she efficiently found presents for her family, even Tyler who was always hard to buy for. When Gia returned to her car, it wouldn’t start.
Reluctantly, Gia locked all the presents in her trunk and started the long walk home. She couldn’t get through to anyone for a ride, not even a cab. It started to rain and Gia pulled out a red umbrella from her purse. The umbrella broke.
Worse, when Gia was leaning down to tie her shoes a man ran by and grabbed her purse. Lucky her keys were in her jacket. She began to cry and her tears mixed with the rain. She found a 7-11 on the way and begged the the man working at the cash register to call her a cab. He did and Gia hoped Tyler still kept an extra credit card in his desk drawer for emergencies.
When Gia went to put the credit card back, she found a picture of cute blond in Tyler’s front desk drawer. She was surprised to find a series of love letters between Tyler and the woman, Elizabeth.
When Tyler came home with the kids, Gia was still crying. She put the TV on loud while she cooked dinner, so the kids could watch and told Tyler about the letters she found. He admitted he had been writing and sleeping with Elizabeth since before he married Gia. She didn’t understand why Tyler even married her if he had always been seeing Elizabeth. But she managed to get her car towed to her house and to deal with her credit and bank cards. Gia was heart broken and exhausted after a long hard day.
She brought in the presents from the car as her kids slept. She wrapped them all, including the ones for Tyler. She wrote them heart felt cards and when it was around midnight and her husband was still working in his office, she packed her bags.
Earlier Gia had booked a last minute trip to Hawaii. She had kept the credit card from Tyler’s office; she knew he wouldn’t blame her. Gia needed to think and Hawaii over Christmas was the place to do it.
I have picked up a few items makeup wise lately. I also have received a couple large samples in Luxebox or with other makeup purchases that have been excellent. So, I wanted to share those purchases/samples with you here today.
Tartlette Amazonian Clay Matte Palette (www.tartcosmetics.com) -$54.00 – I have been impressed by Tarte’s choice of palettes this holiday season. They had some great ones in summer too. I gave away a couple palettes with bronzer, highlighter, eye shadow, and blush combined, to a couple of friends this year and they were well loved Birthday and Christmas presents. When I saw this matte palette I was immediately drawn to it because it had a fair amount of light colours in the palette. The issue I find with many palettes of eye shadow is that they have too many medium and dark colors and not enough light colors. And it is important to have a good amount of light colours to choose from because those are the colours that go all over your eyelid before you put on a medium color on your lid and darker colour in your crease. You may even use more of the light colour to blend your eye shadow at the end of your eye shadow process.
So, I’m pretty happy with this eye shadow palette. Basically, each row is a different kind of eye shadow look you can achieve. Although the palette does come with instructions on how to do and everyday eye with the purple colours and a nighttime eye with some of the skin tone and brownish colors. The very darkest colours are excellent if you use those colours to line your eyes. But I don’t really do that nor have I ever. I usually go with a liquid liner in black, brown, purple, or grey and I think it is so much simpler to do your eyeliner with a makeup designed to be a liner ergonomically. So, those dark colours are useless colours in the palette for me. But I do like the first three colours in each row. I have tried all three looks out and they are superb. Plus, Tarte has such pigmented eye shadow. You have to be careful you don’t use to much especially of the darker colours.
The only thing that I would change about the palette would be to make the lighter colours larger in size. Because what always happens is you run out of the lighter colours earlier and have these medium and dark colours left because you use less of the colours due to the dark pigment. I also wouldn’t have minded maybe a colour in each row that was even lighter then what is provided, for the corner of your eye and your brow bone (instead of a colour to line your eyes). It would give your eyes that extra glimmer that is so refined. I was very happy to buy this palette at 30 % off. They are sold out on Tarte’s website right now but you might be able to find it full price at Sephora.
Tarte Cheek Stain (Skintuitive) in Energy – (www.tartecosmetics.com)
– $36.00 – For the picture of the cheek stain I could not get the picture in the colour I have which is called Energy and is a bubblegum pink. I usually do not like wet or cream blushes but I have found a couple of options that are actually nice. One of them is this Tarte cheek stain which I got a large sample from Tarte in the summer. What is neat about this Tarte Cheek Stain is it is “Skintuitive.” So, you take the lid off and put it right on your cheeks or use a blush brush and really buff and smooth the blush in so it looks natural. You cannot leave the blush how it is at first or it looks like you have neon pink streaks on your cheek. As you blend the colour in, the colour adapts to your skin colour so that you get your perfect shade of pink (or whatever colour) for your cheeks. I am not sure if all Tarte Cheek Stains do this or simply the sample and colour I have but either way the Cheek Stain is a great product, remains on your cheeks all day, and doesn’t rub off easily. The product sinks into your skin and stays put. The process of applying this blush is actually easier then powder blush to apply once you get the hang of the product. Tarte has about eight different colours you can choose from on their site and Sephora may have even more.
Two Faced La Creme Lipstick in Marshmallow Bunny – (www.twofaced.com) – $32.oo – I have been using sites for these Makeup finds other than Sephora. I love Sephora but it is Christmas time and you can often find deals on a brands home website as I did with Tarte. Two Faced is having deals every day until Christmas. Today’s deal is: FREE Flat Buki Brush with any Love Flush Blush! Code: TFBEAUTY11. In case, you wanted to check that out. What is awesome about this lipstick is it is creamy and good for keeping dry lips away. It hydrates your lips as well as acting as a lipstick. I was looking for the perfect pink lipstick and I found this shade Marshmallow Bunny. The colour is pretty opaque and longer lasting but does need to be applied every few hours. The best part about this lipstick besides the colour is it’s creaminess so your lips won’t dry out while wearing it. There are 32 different colours on the Two Faced website to choose from. I have slowly been trying out some of Two Faced Makeup and have been happy with it. I like their eye shadow sets and am particularly found of a highlighting powder they carry.
Bioderma Hydrabio Lait: Moistuirising Cleansing Milk for Sensitive
Dehydrated Skin: Cleanses and Removes Make-up, moisturisers – (www.murale.ca) – $21.95 – Bioderma skincare products come in many types for different skin. This particular Cleansing Milk which removes makeup well, is for dry skin. I don’t have dry skin but I have not found the product to be oily or anything close to it. Generally, I use wipes to remove my makeup but a couple of posts ago I told you guys about a mascara from Dior that I was using. It was so hard to take off my eyelashes and sometimes got on my skin around my eyes. Bioderma Cleansing milk is amazing and will remove any makeup on your skin or eyes. The only problem I found when removing my eye make up, with some of the cleansing milk on cotton round, was that if you swipe to hard, your contacts will pop out. First world problem! I was not expecting much from a makeup remover that acts like cold cream but I have been impressed by this product and Bioderma. Perhaps it merits looking into some of their other skincare products. They are priced well. But Murale was the only place I could find that carried the products.
Blinc Brush it on Slide it Off Eyeliner – (www.blincinc.com) – ($26.00) – I received this Blinc liquid eyeliner in a Luxebox as well. The sample is a bit tiny but the Liquid eyeliner is awesome. Blinc products are not waterproof they are “water-resistant.” When you put the eyeliner on your lash line you are putting on a water-resistant “layer” of eyeliner. Blinc says their product doesn’t “fade, smudge, run, or flake even if you cry or rub your eyes.” When you want to remove Blinc it slides off effortlessly into your hand. It is an interesting product. There are five shades of eyeliner of this type. I am wearing black and the black was intense. Even though I accidentally got some on my brow bone, it was easily removed smudging it with my fingers. I don’t know how taking it off will be tonight since today is the first day I have worn it. But I am happy with how well the product looks on my eye. The black is bright and shiny. And it was easy enough to apply, the wand is a good size. S0, look into Blinc makeup and let me know what you think.
Delectable (miracle material) Ultra Nourishing Coconut and Cream
Body Lotion (www.beautyboutique.ca) -$14.00 – I couldn’t find the exact product I was looking for, but this will give you a close idea of what I have been using. Delectable is a new brand that I received in Luxebox and it can be found at Shoppers Drug Mart across Canada and on their Beauty Boutique website. The lotion I have is for hands and it works so well! I never had dry hands after using this lotion and the Coconut smells so good! Not to mention it is not very expensive for a small tube and because it is Christmas Delectable has a bunch of sets you can get that contain different flavours of their hand and body lotions for gifts. You can also find the full-sized lotions in Shoppers. It’s a nice product I am glad I’ll be able to buy when I run out.
Soap and Glory: The Righteous Butter with Softening Shea Butter and Aloe Vera – (www.beautyboutique.ca) -$18.00 – I bought this Body Butter at Shoppers Drug Mart. I used to love buying the Body Butter at Victoria Secret and it came in so many great flavours such as ‘Love Spell.’ But the problem is Victoria Secret is not making body butter under the brand they were making it under before. So, until I can try their new body butter brand I needed something to last me. So, I tried this Soap and Glory Righteous Butter. While $18.00 is a bit pricey for a body butter which I wear everyday and put on after each shower, there is actually a good amount in the container (300 ml). I enjoy the smell, it is not too overpowering. Righteous Butter smells a little citrusy but only a bit. It works great. My legs are always silky smooth after using Righteous Butter. I also think since, Victoria Secret’s new body butter is $18.00, I might be using this brand if their is more butter (lotion) in the container. I am a huge fan of Soap and Glory. They have great lip, body scrubs, and creams. The only item I have not liked from them have been cleansing clothes, which were not damp enough and not substantial enough to remove makeup well. But the body butter I am extremely satisfied with using.
Hope you enjoyed my mishmash of products. I would like to try sharing some of the good products I receive in Luxebox a bit more. Sometimes I forget about them and the products are the same products that are available online, in your local drugstore, Sephora or Ulta.
My week has slowed down considerably since my course is done. I was happy with the way the course went even though it was frustrating to get notes throughout the course. The frustration was worth it in the end. I have taken basic Creative Writing or fiction courses before so I was looking for maybe an art course I could take in the afternoon but all the courses I’m interested in are at night and like with academic courses, it is even more difficult to draw or paint at night. I’m not sure why because it use to be so relaxing but I end up doing most of the work in the day because I’m not able to do art for long at night. Thus, I have opted for a writing course, a general course on fiction online through Simon Frasier University. There is a course in spring about finishing your works of fiction when you have your manuscript, which looks informative too. I don’t have a full manuscript though it has been a long time since I have felt like I could work on my book. I have some revisions to do first on the chapters I have, due to some critiques from a course I submitted it for. As well, I have been stuck at this one section where my main character is going to her boyfriend’s office party. I have to work out some aspects about setting too. I was picturing a Vancouver like place but I have never been to Vancouver besides in the airport. I am building up some Airmiles so maybe I will have to take a week trip there this year. Perhaps, one of my brothers would come with me or my Mom. Anyways, I am getting ideas for my book so Christmas maybe a good time to begin work on the revisions to start.
Yesterday, I met my brother and his girlfriend for a movie. We went to see Mockingjay 2 from the Hunger Games movie series. I had seen part 1 with both my brother and his girlfriend and she immediately went home and read the books and saw the earlier movies.
SPOILER ALERT: if you haven’t seen the last movie or read the last book don’t read on.
I loved Mockingjay Part 1 and I was anxious to see how in the movies they would complete the process of war against President Snow and the Capitol. I think Katniss is aware that she is being used by President Coin, District 13’s leader. But I don’t think she realizes to what degree until it is too late. Katniss is the figurehead, the face the citizens of each district rally for. She is the Mockingjay and Coin effectively uses her to distract President Snow, Katniss, citizens from each district, and any other people supporting the districts emancipation from the Capitol. Coin uses Katniss, and swoops in to be President of the Capitol, saying she will hold elections later, when the state of Panem has calmed down.
Ironically, President Snow knows he is facing defeat when he calls all the people of the Capitol city to come and be safe at his home where he will provide shelter and food. The worst part of the movie is when you think President Snow directs the peacekeepers to put all the children ahead of everyone else seeking shelter, in barricaded areas. Then little packages come floating down. The children think they are presents but they are much worse. They are bombs and it appears as if in a last act of tyranny, Snow has blown the children of the Capitol to pieces.
But Katniss discovers something when she talks to Snow in his rose garden after Coin and the Districts have taken over. Snow reminds Katniss even though he has few morals he wouldn’t kill all those children because it would be unnecessary. He was already defeated. It was Coin who bombed all the children, killing Katniss’s sister and making President Snow appear supremely tyrannical even to his own guards and citizens of the Capitol. What is more painful for Katniss is the fact Gale was apart of Coin’s plan, on purpose? I don’t know. Gale apologizes to Katniss for not taking care of Katniss’s family as he promised he would. But it is too late, the idea of bombing civilians who were powerless had been his idea to begin with.
I liked Gale and wanted him to end up with Katniss. But once Gale saw how the Capitol treated the people of District 12 and destroyed the District, he developed a kill or be killed view Katniss didn’t agree with. He believes it is okay to have civilian casualities if they are the enemy. But he sees how terrible his thinking is when he looses Katniss, his bestfriend and the girl he loves. Not to mention, the relationship between Katniss and Peta becomes apparent as Katniss and her military team fight their way to Snow so Katniss can kill Snow.
When Katniss finds out what President Coin has done she waits for her moment to strike. When Coin calls for a meeting of all the remaining Hunger Game participants to have one last Hunger Games with children of the Capitol’s citizens, instead of executing everyone involved with Snow’s government, Katniss agrees. Her and Haymitch sway the vote. But Katniss only agrees because she is allowed the honour of killing Snow.
Katniss is particularly brilliant in her actions. But little does she find out that she and even Coin are being used by the second Game maker of the Hunger Games, Plutarch. Plutarch is aware of the moves people will make even before they will make them; he is the ultimate game maker. So, everything goes according to plan when Katiness directs her arrow at Coin instead of Snow. Snow is dying anyways, and a mob of people finish the job. Coin lies dead, no better then Snow.
But as Plutarch planned the 75th Hunger Games, he directs Katniss and Coin in their actions, as if he is directing a larger Hunger Games, the freedom of Panem. Katiness’s killing of Coin is pardoned by a new elected leader of Panem, one of the other District leaders. Her death makes elections a definite event that will continue to occur in Panem for the future. With Katniss, Plutarch directs the forming of a new government for Panem and a better life for all its citizens. He writes Katniss a letter admitting to using her, and not regretting it.
In the end, Katniss having lost Gale — her bestfriend, her little sister Prim, and a great part of herself, goes home to live in the victor’s houses with Haymitch in District 12. She is overjoyed to find Peta there one day planting prime roses in honour of Prim. The end of this series is wonderful because we see two people broken by the awful Hunger Games, war, and lost loved ones, be at peace in Disrict 12.
Katiness hunts again. She lives with Peta and they have two children together. How does she sort through all the tragedy she’s experienced? She makes lists of all the good things people have done in her head and these lists get her through her nightmares. The good in people make her journey worth all the people who have died in the Hunger Games. It makes it worth the people she killed, were killed for her, and because of her, all since she volunteered for The Hunger Games. Lists about the good things people do make Katiness able to live with herself and create a life for her family.
I loved the whole series. It was one of my favourite book to film adaptations I have seen. And I loved the vivid and creative costumes worn by the people in the Capitol. They were indeed lavish and vein, as they were beautiful. If you haven’t seen or read the series, I urge you to check out The Hunger Games. The first time I received the intial novel I thought what weird book did my friend give me. But I was hooked once I started reading and you will be too. Whether or not you read, or watch, or do both.
Mockingjay Part 2 Trailer:
Christmas is close, I’m looking forward to our family traditions of snacks and church on Christmas Eve and Christmas Dinner on Christmas Day. I’m trying to visit and talk to many friends who have some time off. I have lots planned. I am looking forward to getting my haircut and nails done next week and to getting my final shopping items. I am hoping everyone likes their presents and I’m looking to getting myself a nice tablet. My old one has had it! I want to do baking still and I would like to see a couple more movies. There are some good ones that are out besides Mockingjay 2 and Spectre which I wrote about in an earlier post. Joy with Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, and Robert Deniro looks great. Reminds me I have to watch a couple old Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper movies that came after Silver Lining’s Playbook. There is a great sequal to the Tim Burton directed Alice in Wonderland. If you’ve read the book you’ll know that the sequal is Alice Through The Looking Glass. Johnny Depp returns as the mad-hatter and Sasha Baron- Cohan an actor I never would have thought would go much of anywhere, shows his versatility by playing ‘time’ in this movie.
Happy Tuesday everyone! I hope it hasn’t been a hard start for those of you coming back from Thanksgiving holidays. Last week I had two things to do: Christmas shop online and study for my Residential Furnishing’s Final. I’m happy to say I wrote the final today and although the essay part I found difficult to do, I think I put enough examples and information on Early Moderan furnishings that I formed a good enough essay. I hope so anyways. I received my proposal back and got an A- on that and have an A- on the midterm, so I just need to keep my mark at an A- and I’ll be happy. It would help with some of other courses where I was only able to earn a B-. But it is exciting because my Residential Interiors Certificate is finished and I receive it in June 2017. It’s good to feel a sense of completion, that I was able to accomplish something even though throughout these almost eight years I have been too sick to work. I am still looking into some kind of writing course for the Winter term or Spring term. Now that I have more time tomorrow I can look into what kind of course and from where I want to take it.
My Christmas shopping online was a success, sort of. . . In fact, the only thing I wasn’t able to buy were some clothing I wanted from Banana Republic. But I think I will save that for next pay cheque. Honestly, for the items I had to buy I didn’t find I received that great of a deal. Purdy’s (the chocolate store) had free standard shipping. Indigo books had the best deals. I got three throws for various relatives on sale for $22.50 each and assorted nice looking gift bags all for $2 to $3. They also had an extra 10% off you paid by Visa. As well, I bought some gift cards and those of course have no money off because they are like cash. I shopped at Lush online but no discount there. Sephora did have some great holiday deals for different sets. I got a Bliss set with hand lotion, body butter, and shower gel for $18.00. The part that was the deal was a ton of free samples from various makeup and skincare lines. Also, they had $13.00 gift sets on Black Friday but none I liked. I really wanted this eyeshadow palett from Tarte but the 25% discount Tarte was offering didn’t apply to their holiday sets. So basically I’m done the shopping part except for some wine from DeVine wines downtown for Christmas Eve, me, and my God Parents. Then I just have to make all the presents look pretty around Christmas time.
I went to a show at the Expo Center in Edmonton; it was called “Make It Edmonton.” The is all about buying local handmade items that various vendors are selling, that have to be of a certain quality. The show goes is in Vancouver too. I picked up some wine tags and a couple of bamboo screened t-shirts with birds on them. They were cute and there were some bamboo scarves with a screened bird images on them that were also nice in several colors. I liked a couple vendors who made silk scarves and dyed them by hand. There was so much beautiful jewelry. A lot of it was simple but I liked this pearl and crystal necklace made out of a piece of an old clock. There were also some yummy chocolate Ganache cupcakes and some gluten free cookies for my Dad. Many of the vendors at “Make It” you might see on Etsy. I am going to the butterdome craft show next Saturday with my Mom and I don’t know how different it will be. Usually, it’s a bit more crafty and has a bit more varied items. Think more wood carving and wool mittens.
Anyway, I came home after my exam today and I felt as if I wanted to clean and tidy things up. I don’t often feel this way so I figured I better act on the feeling. I put all my interior design materials away from my course and cleaned up in the living room where I study. Then I noticed that my room was dusty so I thoroughly cleaned a dresser and one section of my room from expired or barely used beauty products, dust, and clothing that is going to Good Will. I’ll finish off some more cleaning tomorrow. Cleaning away the old makes me feel as if everything is ready for brand new life events and the holiday season.
In addition, what came out of my cleaning up are some new beauty blogging ideas over the next few weeks. First, I don’t think I’ve ever done a blog (except on dry shampoo) on my favourite hair products and brands and why I use these particular ones. I also want to link that with The Small Things Blog and include some of Kate’s (the blogger) more recent hair tutorials that I have been doing. So you’ll have access to those YouTube videos.Also, I wanted to share a video on my skincare routine. It’s extremely important to take care of your skin and I am going to share with you the products from Clinique and else where that have worked for me, some since high school and some more recently.Lastly, I have a beauty blog to do on a mishmash of products I have received as larger samples in my Luxebox’s or that I have bought that don’t fit into a particular catagory of beauty products. So, three beauty posts ahead.
Addotionally, I can’t stop being excited about our football league this year, the CFL, and my home team the Edmonton Eskimos who won the Grey Cup (named for the Earl of Grey one-hundred-and-three years ago. He’s also the same earl who earl grey tea is named after). The Grey Cup was Sunday in Winnipeg. The weather was decent. Some years they play in -30 degree Celsius weather outside. But November has been beautiful in Canada. I watched football while I studied and drank red wine to celebrate as we narrowly defeated the Ottawa RedBlacks. It’s also great because my Dad is a Saskatchewan Roughrider’s fan who will cheer for any team but my Eskimos. We beat his team and the team he cheered for at the Grey Cup so that is always a plus.
I know many of you are probably like: “Canada has a football league and it isn’t the NFL?” Yes, we most certainly do and the same way you get many Canadian hockey players in the US, we get football players from some of your universities in the US to come play in our league. Many of our players are Canadian or American and are extremely talented, they have just chosen to play in the CFL out of love. But we also get players who don’t make it on NFL teams or players who are training themselves to be better so they can go on to play in the NFL. Doing this as a player can work but doesn’t always. The biggest difference in the CFL is that we have three downs instead of four. So, what this means is in the CFL you have only three chances to move the football ten yards before the other team gets the ball. There are some other differences too I think some differences with the yardage on the field and number of players but I haven’t looked into it lately. Anyways, enjoy your NFL, many of my friends are in a pool trying to get the most wins from the teams they picked. Let’s just say there is a player with the last name Eifert, and that’s not a common name in Canada or the US, so whatever team he is on, I want my cousin (of however many times) to win.
To end, I will mention that I will as always have other blog topics besides beauty. I am doing a Writing 101 poetry course on WordPress and I’ll just see what happens from there.
When I was a little boy I use to love trains. One Christmas my Grandpa bought me this train set that went around the whole Christmas tree and all the other presents. I was 4-years-old and a train that went around a track and whistled like a real train was the funnest gift ever. I wanted to be the engineer who drove the trains on the track when I was older.
That’s what my Grandpa did. There is this picture in his office. It’s black and white and there is this sense of wanderlust I receive when I look at this picture. My Grandpa tells me stories, how he took people all across Canada on this train.
Now I am 21-years-old and I trained to drive the metro. I love my job. Except one day I wasn’t paying attention and I hit another train. I heard the screeching, the screaming, as metal bent and people died.Train driver error. But it doesn’t matter anymore — I am driving trains in the sky.