Things I Love Thursday ❤ [08.24.2017]

❤ Being steadily booked for tea leaf readings. ❤ Focusing on positive self-care. ❤ Bannock for breakfast. ❤ My fox-shaped heating bag. ❤ Marathoning Game of Thrones. ❤ Big cups of green tea. ❤ Taking my mom and niece to the zoo. ❤ Snow leopards. ❤ Collecting acorns. ❤ New books for hella cheap. ❤ Piles of journals and knowing what I want to do with them. ❤ I got two new piercings! ❤ Misty mornings and spiderwebs covered in dew. ❤ Writing my first TiLT in so many months. ❤ 

xo,

Fao

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An Adventure in Toronto~

In April 2016 I went to Toronto, Ontario with my bestie. Our favourite Japanese rock band was performing for the first time in Canada and we just had to go!

We both work full-time and she has a kid, so we decided we’d only go for four days. We’d arrive on the 26th, sight-see and go to the concert on the 27th, shop on the 28th, and fly back home on the 29th.

Roku got to sorting through the tourist attractions while I started working on my shopping list. We were staying on Queen Street East which extends to Queen Street West and has tons of little stores and coffee shops!

On the 26th, we drove 2.5 hours to Winnipeg, MB to catch our flight. We each brought a suitcase (mostly empty to lug home our purchases) and a carry-on. Our flight was sold out so they offered to stow away carry-ons for free if anyone was willing, which was fine by me! My purse had everything I needed on the flight anyway; wrist braces, journal, mp3 player, phone and pain pills being the most important!

I had the window seat, Roku had the middle seat and a grumpy old man had the aisle seat. I didn’t enjoy the flight in the slightest, sadly. I’m sensitive to heat, bright lights and repetitive noises. Plus sitting in a cramped seat for two hours was torture for my chronic pain. But I managed to get through it by listening to the Gazette and watching a silly cartoon.

Landing at the Toronto airport…which is actually in Mississauga. I wanted to get food because I was starving, but Roku went in the other direction and found the exit so we decided to just go to our hotel. We opted for a taxi even though everyone warned against them due to the price. I was not in the mood to drag my suitcases to the subway and on the bus, y’hear?

We chose the cheapest hotel we could find. It was pretty nice for the price. We dropped off our stuff and headed down Queen Street East in search of food.

Idk if this was a park or something, but it was so pretty! We went by a few stores and asked for recommendations for restaurants; some ladies in a second-hand kids shop recommended the Ashdale but it was closed. The menu posted on the window sounded ah-mazing so we decided to come back for breakfast.

All the shop staff were dressed to match their shop’s aesthetic. I loved it! This shop had a retro, pin-up vibe. I regret not buying the sailor top I found D= my bestie bought a cute pair of heart-shaped sunnies.

We went to the Tango Palace Coffee Co., which I had marked on my list of places to see. It had a very retro bar vibe, with cushy armchairs as well as tables. I asked the barista for his best coffee drink and he made me a cortado. We also got sandwiches 😍 I couldn’t take a good pic of mine so Roku said I could use hers 😂 She had a veggie sammich whilst I had ham.

We visited a few more places and then stopped at Shoppers to grab food. Roku wanted to buy groceries so we’d save money which seemed like a good idea at first. We picked up water and a bunch of fruit, and then headed back to the hotel. I was in agony thanks to my chronic pain 😐 we couldn’t get back to the hotel soon enough. Once we did, i think we just crashed and maybe watched a movie

The next morning, instead of taking advantage of the hotel’s free brekkie (Roku’s plan), we headed to the Ashdale. We were pretty early so we were the only ones there.

I couldn’t decide if I wanted to order a cortado or a matcha chai latte. I’m always worried about ordering my (new) favourite drink in a new place cuz what if it sucks?!

So I went with a cortado….and it sucked.

It’s funny cuz their sign literally says they do espresso. WHY WAS IT SO BAD THEN?

My brekkie sandwich was ah-mazing (bacon, eggs, aioli sauce and english muffin), but after choking down the cortado I had to order a matcha chai latte to wash the taste out.

We sat for a bit while I worked on my travel journal. It was a chill place to relax and people-watch.

I left my pain pills at the hotel and was trying to decide if I was brave enough to go without them since we were kinda late…turns out Roku left our tickets behind 😂 so we went back to our hotel room lately.

Roku said we should do touristy stuff in Toronto and I agreed. I was mainly excited for the gift shop 😂

I would’ve loved to go into this native arts gallery 😍 it’s the main reason I’ve been trying to get back for the past year.

Standing on the infamous glass floor at the CN Tower. Personally I don’t see what the big deal is.

I liked the portholes best.

Is that enough skyscrapers? Okay, moving on.

Then we went to Ripley’s aquarium which I wasn’t too pumped about. Too many squalling children.

The only part I liked was the moving sidewalk that went in a tunnel under the tanks. No more walking for this spoonie 😂

We had to rush out of the aquarium so Roku could meet someone. I decided to go on an adventure up Queen Street East in search for a new concert outfit. Such a pretty street 😍 

I found this tank in a resale shop for $4. I tried to convert the shop clerk to the GazettE as well but it didn’t quite work 😂 I picked up some Nyx lippy for the concert too.

I stopped at an independent bookstore and picked up the last Raven Cycle book, too!

We were told to get to the concert at 5, we’d be let in at 6, GA would be let in at 7 and the concert would start at 8. We got there at 4:30 and discovered people had been lining up since 10 am.

A surprising amount of the concert-goers were young! I felt like Roku and I were the oldest ones there 😂 plus we weren’t wearing any fishnets, chokers or Demonia platforms.

The concert was ah-mazing. Oh and I spent my life savings on merchandise. No regrets.

We made a new friend named Christine! It was a great night 🤗

We spent the entire next day on Queen Street West. I spent pretty much all of my money at this little Japanese shop, Sanko.

Then I spent the rest of it at The Paper Place! Omg, I loved this shop 😍 I’d love to go back. I bought journals, washi tape and origami paper.

This store, Originals, was soo cool…but the sales associates had shitty customer service, so we didn’t buy anything. I love those Alice by Irregular Choice shoes 😢

Roku wanted to go on a streetcar so we went on them TWICE…It wasn’t that cool 😂 we went up Queen Street East and went to a really lame Chapters and a chocolate shop that wasn’t cool at all. 

The intersection outside our hotel.

On our last night we went out for sushi! This place seemed iffy at first but it turned out to be really good 😍

The next morning we went home ❤

My Birthday Weekend ❤

My birthday weekend started on February 26th since most of my family was home. (My sister and niece live in the next town and visit every weekend.)

I woke up in a bit of a slump (Pisces energy? Solar eclipse?) so I busted out this lovely candle I’ve been saving.

Cake and presents! I didn’t want a cake at first but my sister bought this tiny pink cake for me. I didn’t take photos of every individual present~ I got a lot of owl stuff, the most beautiful wooden feather earrings, and a huge make-up case.

I asked for stickers, so my sister and niece went wild at the dollar store. They also gave me a set of gel pens for my planner. 

They also gave me a ‘grow owl’! It’s such an adorable gift. You stick it in water and an owl comes out of the stump. I’m hoping it will be out by tonight.

I had originally planned to go to Winnipeg for my birthday. I was going to buy macarons from a bakery and I was pretty excited about it. Sadly those plans fell through…but my sis and I found a lady in town who makes ’em! We ordered a dozen in three flavours: pistacho, vanilla and lavender. So yummy!

I bought myself this soda…it tastes exactly like cake 😂😂😂

A few gifts from my girls ❤ Yuki-chan sent me a package that had two gifts in it for my birthday. Everything she chose was symbolic: a Hello Kitty frying pan for health and happiness, Hello Kitty nail polish and Canmake mascara for beauty and charm, and a deck of Vampire Knight playing cards for luck. Isn’t that great?! The pop-up card is also from Yuki-chan. The necklace was one of my gifts from Roku ❤

My last birthday treat to myself – which i didn’t take a photo of – was a cherry blossom scented shampoo and conditioner set from OGX. I’ve wanted it forever because I love cherry blossoms. 

My month of birthday celebrations – aka self-care- was a fun experiment. I had to stop and consciously make decisions as to how I would treat myself each day, which made everything that much more special. I think I’d like to try a week of self-care every month now. I have so many ideas that I didn’t get to do!

I hope you enjoyed following along on my birthday month ❤

xo,

Fao

My Birthday Month: Week 4

February 19th: Almost there! On Sunday I had a little DIY spa night with my fav LUSH face mask, Rosy Cheeks. This is one of my favourite masks to use in the winter.

February 20th: Last year I decided to learn how to frost a cupcake. My mom and sis bought me lots of decorating supplies that I never used…😂 The 20th was Family Day so I decided to frost my first cupcakes in a loong time. I was trying to emulate a delicious cream cheese frosting the old bakery in town had but to no avail. This frosting was entirely too runny. But at least it was yummy! (The cupcakes are red velvet.)

February 21st – 22nd: I didn’t do anything terribly exciting on these days, hence the lack of photos.

February 23rd: I planned to purchase a completely different colour of nail polish, but I loved the shimmer in this one! I also bought a dark red/gold shimmery polish.

February 24th: I can’t actually recall what I did on this day, but I did go out for dinner at the Cornerstone again! This time I got the almond chicken. omg it was amazing. 

February 25th: On this day I purchased a face mask I’ve been wanting to try for a while. I’m kinda obsessed with sheet masks! I haven’t had a chance to use it yet~

I think I’ll update the 26th & the 27th later =)

xo,

Fao

My Birthday Month: Week 3

February 12th: This was the laziest day. I actually didn’t do anything to celebrate myself. I mainly lazed about with my cat. But lazy days are okay sometimes!

February 13th: I’ve been looking forward to this day! I took my mother out for lunch at The Cornerstore, a lovely restaurant that I don’t visit enough. I ordered my beloved coconut shrimp and we also got a plate of pub nachos to share 😍

February 14th: Usually I dress up for Valentine’s day but I didn’t have anything work appropriate. So I decided to give myself a manicure instead! I used to love painting my nails but I don’t devote much time to it anymore.

February 15th: On this day I did something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time….I reorganized my crystals! I have them all organized alphabetically, but when I bought new crystals I didn’t bother rearranging. I finally sat down and did it! I can’t wait til the next full moon to cleanse everything. My raw stones are in a glass display case and my skulls, spheres, hearts and palm stones are scattered on my altar.

February 16th: This wasn’t necessarily an activity I wanted to do, but it needed to get done. On this day I completed two lessons of my schoolwork before my chronic pain started acting up. I haven’t completed any work since I registered to finish school because I’ve been afraid of aggravating my pain. It was a tough process but I did it! 

February 17th: Not necessarily a celebration, but lately I’ve been taking time to appreciate the little things – like this beautiful sunset!

February 18th: The temperature has been above 0 lately! I had a matcha Frappucinno to celebrate 🤗

Pre-birthday Gifts: I purchased this gorgeous satchel from an eBay store. It’s actually humongous and I’m kinda daunted by it 😂 But I’m looking forward to using it! 

Technically this isn’t a pre-birthday gift because I’m respecting Yuki’s wishes and waiting until my birthday! Yuki sent two gifts like this. Patience is not my strongest suit…😂

Some thoughts: I’ve seen some cranky posts on the internet about how dumb birthday months/weeks are, and I think that is a dumb mindset. Celebrating my birthday all month long is a way of mindfully incorporating self-care into my daily routine.

I’ve changed a few small things in my routine now. I take time to enjoy my food and listen to my body. This is so important to me because in the past, I’d eat as much as I could in one sitting and end up stuffed. I also take time to enjoy a special hot drink every work day. I often drink green tea at work, but lately I’ve been enjoying cocoa and drink packages Yuki sends me from Japan. 

I’ve also been working out and paying attention to how my body feels. I’ve been lifting weights, trying out new yoga routines, challenging myself with more squats and push-ups, and enjoying how strong I feel! 

I stopped wearing make-up on a daily basis about two years ago. I like looking like me all the time! But I also love bold lipstick and popping eyeshadows, so lately I’ve been taking the time to do my make-up. Not every day, mind you; I don’t have the patience to painstakingly remove mascara every night 😂 although I do wear my beloved Trinket lippy every day!

Lastly, I’ve been taking care of my skin. I wash and moisturize my face twice a day, but the rest of me tends to get ignored…especially in the winter! I’ve been incorporating dry brushing my legs and body oils into my nightly routine now.

My Birthday Month: Week 2

February 5th: On this day I went shopping with my sis and decided to treat myself to two new bralettes! Omg they’re so pretty.

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February 6th: Idk if this photo is terrible? On this day I went out for dinner with my bestie. The restaurant I wanted to go to was closed and unfortunately we don’t have much of a selection in town. We ended up at Boston Pizza where I got my usual Thai chicken bites – and proceeded to whine about how my mouth was on fire, as usual 😂

February 7th: I finally cleaned out my card wall! I had cards up there that had no meaning for me, so I finally scrapped them. I thought this meant I’d have more room but apparently not 😂 I think I need to rearrange my wall a bit to fit another ribbon up.

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February 8th: I used one of my new bath bombs from Lend Me Some Sugar in combination with Pain Release bath salts from Saje. This bomb was ‘French Pear’ and it turned the water an amazing glittery blue! The bomb contained a copper gemstone ring from Kitson Blue.

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February 9th: I have entirely too many expensive body products that I rarely use. Isn’t that silly?! I used this lotion after a good dry brushing session. I can’t say if it works super well but that’s okay – I got it on clearance for $3!

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February 10th: I needed to relax after a high pain week. My niece and sis are here for the weekend so I watched my favourite movie, Alice in Wonderland, with my niece and my Ches plushie 💖

February 11th: Another low-key evening to finish off my week. I didn’t get an actual photo, but on the 11th I finally watched the third episode of the new season of the Magicians. omg, so many shockers!

Pre-birthday Gifts: I purchased three bath bombs from Lend Me Some Sugar Spa Cosmetics, a small business in the next city. I told them I was spoiling myself for my birthday so they upgraded one of the bath bombs and threw in a free lip scrub 😍

I wrote on FB that I wanted stickers for my planner, so Mesha-chan shared some of her stash with me! Mesha and I were penpals years ago. Now we keep in touch via Fb, so it was nice receiving something in the mail from her 💖

I haven’t purchased from Sugarpill in forevs so I decided to buy their Trinket lip colour. It arrived….and instantly rekindled my love for Sugarpill. I’m already planning my next order 😂

xo,
Fao

My Birthday Month: Week 1

February 1st: I treated myself to a grilled cheese panini and a matcha latte at my favourite coffee shop 😍 this picture is mainly to show how ridiculous their counter is 😂 Their old location had the perfect street-view. Oh well! I came in an hour before closing and pretty much had the place to myself.

I also hung out with my bestie on this day but we didn’t do anything note-worthy.

February 2nd: I bought myself flowers to celebrate Imbolc. I wanted potted daffodils but they were all sold out, so I got some cut flowers to make a small arrangement.

I also purchased Gala Darling’s RSL Almanac. I haven’t fully delved into it yet! I’m hoping to print it out.

February 3rd: I put together some glamour bombs to surprise my girls on Valentine’s Day! Yeah, I consider random acts of beauty & kindness to be a form of treating myself. Making the people I care about happy makes me happy! It’s been so long since I decorated any envelopes so it was fun pulling out my washi tape and stamp pens.

February 4th: I decided I deserved some new make-up! I managed to refrain from buying any lipstick, however 😂 [FYI: The mascara sucks. Sad monkey.]

Pre-birthday gifts: These beaded owl earrings were a gift from my sister. I’ve coveted them since last December 😍 they’re handmade by a lady in town.

I’m looking forward to everything I have planned this week =D

xo,
Fao