Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Oh, How Pinteresting #4 ~ The Wanderlust Edition

I love to travel. It's one of those things that I desperately wish I could do more of, but I just don't have the money, plus I really don't have anyone to travel with and I'm not the type of girl who could venture out on her own for some epic solo adventure.

My wanderlust comes and goes. Sometimes I think I resign myself to the fact that it's going to be a long time before I get to take another trip, and then other times I want to just take off and go so badly I feel like I'm going to burst. Lately it's been the latter. My wanderlust is so bad right now, I can practically taste it. So...since I can't really do anything about it, I look at pictures, plot and plan, and daydream. *sigh*

This is Oh, How Pinteresting, the Wanderlust Edition:

Source: tumblr.com via Marie on Pinterest

Source: flickr.com via Marie on Pinterest

Oh, How Pinteresting! is hosted by Michelle over at The Vintage Apple.

Jenn’s Bridal Shower and Bachelorette

One of my best childhood friends, Jenn, is getting married June 16th. Jenn and I have been friends since 1st grade, so that’s about 23 years…a freaking long time to be friends with someone. We’ve always had this incredibly volatile relationship - we’ve loved each other like sisters and hated each other like worst enemies. Sometimes in the same day.

And now she’s getting married. Every time I say that, I either seem to laugh or cry. It’s just so surreal. Jenn has a six-year-old son, so she’s already technically a ‘grown up’ but this seals the deal, you know? She’ll officially be an adult, despite the fact that she’s been responsible for another human life for the last six years. It’s just that most people - Jenn included, I think - likely thought Jenn would never get married. And now she is, and, like I said, it’s just incredibly surreal.

Even more surreal is the fact that I didn’t even meet her fiancé, Adam, until this past Saturday. Jenn and I are in contact fairly regularly, but we don’t see each other that much. We’ve had some issues over the years (in case you didn’t guess by the whole ‘we’ve always had a volatile relationship’ thing), and we’ll go months without seeing or speaking to each other, but then we'll all of a sudden start hanging out again. We started spending a bit of time together shortly after Jenn met Adam year before last. We had a few movie night/sleepovers, but then she got more serious with Adam and we went back to not seeing each other. I was absolutely shocked when they got engaged that Christmas. I think they’d only been together three months or so, so I was glad to hear they’d be engaged for a year and a half. 

I think before Saturday, the last time I saw Jenn was just after Christmas when we spent a day shopping together, so almost six months. I didn’t think I’d even meet Adam until the wedding, which gave me such a bizarre feeling, but I finally got to meet him Saturday night. 

Another weird feeling comes from the fact that I always expected to be in her bridal party. I can understand why I’m not - neither of us has exactly been the ideal friend at times. I know there were plenty of times when I should have been there for her and I wasn’t, and there were times I’d wished she was there for me and she wasn't - there are a lot of things I'd change about our history if I had the chance. She’s had a group of friends who have pretty much been there for her, and I can understand why they’re in her bridal party and I’m not. So because I understand, I can’t say that I’m hurt, it’s just strange, especially after 23 years of friendship. I didn’t get to go to her Jack and Jill because I already had plans, so when I was invited to the shower, I thought ‘come hell or high water, I am going to that shower’, and I’m so glad I did.

And now that all that heavy stuff is out of the way, I’ll get onto the fun stuff. The shower was co-hosted by Jenn’s maid of honour, Lindsey, and Jenn’s mom. We played a few games, had some great food and cake, and a lot of drinks. And when I say a lot, I mean I spent almost 12 hours straight drinking, and I’m not even kidding. Lindsey got Suleena (my other childhood best friend, and my date for the wedding) and me a drink as soon as we arrived, and I pretty much always had a drink the entire day and night. Days later, I’m still trying to figure out how I ended up not getting violently ill lol.

Lindsey had this scavenger hunt checklist of embarrassing things Jenn had to, and we went all over town doing them before ending up at the club. I haven’t been out dancing since my sister-in-law’s bachelorette party, and before that it was my college days when I used to go out every weekend with Jenn. We had a blast - our pregnant friend Starr (who I’ve known since kindergarten, and haven't seen since high school) was our designated driver who got to chauffeur us all around to check things off the list, then we ended up at Boston Pizza for more drinks and something to eat, and then Starr dropped us off at the club. It took us until almost 2am, but we finally got everything crossed off the list, and we had an incredible time in the process.

Less than three weeks until the wedding. I know I'm going to bawl my eyes out, and I also know I'm going to wish I was part of the whole thing, up there with her, part of the laughter and jokes and fun. But that's my burden to bear. All I can do is try to be a better friend now and make up for the times I should have been a better friend. 

Now I just need to find an outfit for the wedding! ;-)

Super yummy cake
The bride in some of her bachelorette gear, with her giant booze jug
Starr, Jenn, & me in our bridal gowns - the product of a shower game
Here comes the bride...now I just need a groom...lol
Mmm, fishbowl full o' booze. So good.


Monday, May 28, 2012

Motivate Me Monday #2

Motivate Me Monday is hosted by Amanda at For Love of a Cupcake.

Weekly stats from Monday May 21st - Sunday May 27th
Weekly weigh in - lost 2 pounds!
Fitness minutes: 360
Miles walked: 31.5
*Note: I didn't work out Friday (I was out half the day and felt sick the rest of the day), Saturday (I was at a bridal shower and bachelorette party from 2pm-2am), or Sunday (miraculously wasn't hungover - not sure how that happened after 12 hours of drinking - but I was tired and sore from Saturday). I only mention this because I usually work out 6-7 days a week, and this week it was only 4 days.*

I spent most of Friday morning going through Amanda’s (my sister-in-law) closet for an outfit for my friend Jenn’s bridal shower. Amanda just got a bunch of new clothes, and had several pants in a size smaller than I’d been wearing…and they fit! I was so excited! It’s been a long time coming. In the two years I’ve been yo-yoing I haven’t been able to make it to a smaller pant size than this one, so that’s my next big goal - I think another 10-15 pounds should do it. I ended up wearing a pair of my own pants to the shower (which hadn’t fit me in about a year, and which I later realized were actually kind of baggy on me), and a pretty purple shirt of Amanda’s. I felt comfortable and I felt good…not self-conscious like I usually am. And when we were at the bar, I saw a few cute boys looking at me…something I’m not used to! I felt confident for the first time in a long time, and it was nice. Scratch that, it was amazing. I'd forgotten how empowering it feels, because it's happened so infrequently in my life. I’m going to hold onto that feeling when I have the urge to eat everything in sight or not work out as hard as I know I could. 


I tried to be really good all week with my eating and exercise, knowing that Saturday I'd probably be eating a lot of junk, and drinking. I was pleased with how well I did, so I didn't feel guilty on Saturday when I drank for 12 hours straight (I'm not even going to imagine the calories I consumed in alcohol...it would be scary), ate all the amazing food at the shower, then pigged out on garlic bread and nachos before we hit the bar. I kept these things in mind: a) everyone's allowed a little binge once in awhile, b) I never get to go out, so I was determined to enjoy every second, c) I've been busting my butt with workouts, smaller portions, less sugar, and everything, d) it's not every day that one of your childhood best friends gets married and has a bachelorette, and e)....well, see below:

I haven't gone dancing since Amanda's bachelorette five and a half years ago, and before that it was my college days (which is almost eight years ago). I couldn't wait to get on the dance floor, and I know I burned off at least some of the gazillion calories I consumed throughout the day.

What's motivating you this week?


Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday's Letters #1 - May 25th

Friday's Letters is hosted by Ashley over at Adventures of Newlyweds. This is my first time participating; I've stumbled across a few blogs that participate in this, and thought it was a really cute idea. Here are my Friday letters...

Dear Logan, you are always awesome, but you were especially awesome this week. You bring so much joy and laughter into my life. Also, thank you for eating better this week - you worry me when you don't eat enough to keep a bird alive.

Dear spring, I love you so much, but you never stick around long enough. I'm sure we'll have more cool, rainy days before summer is officially here, but I think summer missed the memo and came a little early. As usual.  It's too early to be this hot.

Dear tomorrow, please be amazing. Jenn deserves a beautiful bridal shower and a crazy-amazing bachelorette party. And since I never get to go out, I’d kinda like to think I deserve to have a good time, too. Pretty please?

Dear PMS, thanks so much for making me an irritable bitch the last couple days. You haven’t reared your ugly head in awhile, why did you have to choose right now when there’s so much going on? Please go fly a kite. Preferably in heavy traffic.

Dear body, I love seeing the changes in you. I love feeding you healthier foods and making you move and feeling you get stronger. Soon there will be a lot less of you, but I think it’ll be good for our relationship. 

Dear green tea, I’m still not loving you, but I’m managing to drink you every day, and I’m very proud of myself. I don’t even miss coffee. But don’t tell her that.

Have a great weekend, guys!


Thursday, May 24, 2012

Logan thinks his name is...

Logan has had a big personality since the moment he was born - literally. I was in the delivery room with my brother and sister-in-law, and when he came out, the three of us let out a cry and he looked around. He was so busy trying to figure out what was going on that he forgot to cry himself. It’s been like that since day one - always busy, always afraid he’s going to miss something, always laughing and chattering and doing hilarious things.

It took him awhile to talk. I had this theory: because he was so watchful and observant, he was taking everything in and when he finally started talking, it would be in sentences. Well, I was right. We’d try to get him to talk and he’d just give us this little indulgent smile, but keep his mouth shut. It had to be on his terms, and once he started talking, it was non-stop. At two years and three months, he has the best vocabulary of any two-year-old I've ever known (and I’m not just biased - I’ve worked with kids that age in daycares). 

One thing I discovered a few weeks ago is that he seems to think his name is You. Sometimes we’ll scroll through pictures on the computer, or he’ll pick up a framed picture or an album and start identifying people, and at first, he didn’t say anything when he came to pictures of himself. Then he started pointing and saying, ‘That’s You.” It didn’t take me long to realize he meant himself, and really it makes sense - you point to a picture and say “that’s you,” so he thinks he’s You.

Week before last, we were out on the balcony and I was taking pictures of him, and he wanted to see them as I took them. He pointed to me and said, “You,” then shook his head, pointed to himself and said, “You”. He was so proud of himself. No matter how many times I say, “Yes, that’s Logan,” he maintains he’s You. Yesterday we were doing something and I randomly said, “What’s your name, little boy?” and he once again said, “You.” My mum said, “Your name is Logan.” When he just looked at her, she asked what my name is, then her own, then his, and he triumphantly says, “You.” I totally lost it. And of course, when I get laughing, he gets laughing, and we both dissolve into fits of giggles.

You is the best.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Hunger games of a different sort

I’m at the point in my weight loss journey where I’m hungry all the time. All. The. Time. I’m not starving myself by any means, but nothing is filling me up, or once I get full, I feel hungry again five minutes later. I’m eating considerably less than I was a few weeks ago, so I know it’ll take my stomach time to shrink/adjust, it’s just a painful process.

I think this is one of the many reasons people give up when they're trying to get healthy and lose weight. They can’t fight the hunger, they can’t overcome the cravings, they can’t handle portion control. It takes a lot of will power, and let’s face it, for people who need to lose a significant amount of weight, will power isn’t generally our strong suit.

So what do you do? Give in, or tell yourself ‘this too shall pass’? The latter, of course, if you ever want to see results. I’ve found the trick is to stay busy. I can usually ignore the hunger during the day because I’m busy with Logan, or I’m working, and since I’m a writer, my hands are too busy to be grabbing food and shoving it in my mouth. My problem time is usually at night when I sit to relax and watch TV. I’m generally ok if I’m reading - it’s TV time that’s my nemesis.

Ways to get past the hunger and/or mindless snacking:
*Go for a walk.
*Read a book.
*Get up and march on the spot.
*If you’re watching TV, get up and do stuff during the commercials so you’re not sitting for long periods of time. Keep your mind and hands busy. 
*Find a hobby that keeps your hands busy - making jewelry, scrapbooking, graphic design, photography.
*Drink some water or tea.
*Knit. (I often knit while I watch TV so my hands are busy.)
*Chew a piece of sugar-free gum or suck on a sugarless candy.

If you have to snack, make it a healthy snack. Raw veggies, fruit, nuts, a piece of whole grain bread, low fat yogurt, sugar free or fat free pudding, etc. Chewing sugar free gum helps too - it keeps your mouth busy, and there are some amazing flavors out there now that trick your brain into thinking you’re getting something sweet. And, of course, there’s nothing wrong with indulging once in awhile. It’s better to have a small indulgence than to snap and totally binge. You need to learn to get into a mindset where you’re telling yourself you’re not deprived. You’re eating healthier, you’re putting good food into your body, your body is changing for the better, you’re getting healthier and thinner and stronger and you’re going to live longer. Let those things be your new mantra. The hunger is temporary, but if you can get through it, the benefits are endless.

I've been through this before. Too many times to count. I get to this point - the never-ending hunger - and I give in. But not this time. This time is going to be different. It has to be. I'd rather deal with it now, once and for all, than continue to yo-yo with my weight and my eating habits. Every day I tell myself that the hunger will pass - if I can get past it, I'll continue to lose weight, get healthier, and look and feel amazing. It'll all be worth it.

What do you do to thwart the hunger beast? 


Monday, May 21, 2012

Motivate Me Monday #1

Motivate Me Monday is hosted by Amanda at For Love of a Cupcake.

This is my first time participating in Motivate Me Monday. I found Amanda's blog a couple weeks ago and would have posted last week, except I'd already signed up for the First Loves Blogfest for last Monday. 

Yesterday, in preparation for my first MMM, I created a page talking about my weight loss journey. I'm always looking for motivation and inspiration, and along the way I'd love to be able to inspire some people, too. Like many others, my journey hasn't been an easy one, and I have a long way to go, but it's always nice to know you're not alone.

From now on, every Monday I'll do a progress report along with the things that are keeping me motivated. For now, here are some of the things motivating me this week:

I personally don't want to be skinny, I want to be healthy. Skinny doesn't do anything for me - I'd much rather look like Marilyn Monroe than be a bag of bones. She had a gorgeous body in my opinion.

Before I started my journey, if you'd told me I would come to love exercise, I would have said you needed your head read. I do love it, though, and I love knowing what it's doing for my body - even when I don't necessarily see the results I want, I know I'm getting healthier and stronger.

What's motivating you this week?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Fun Finds - flip flops and hair tamers

Confession time: I'm a hermit. A lot of writers are hermits, but I also have some social anxiety issues (also common among writers, which I just recently learned, and which made me feel a lot better). I don't get out much - I work a lot, and I watch my 2-year-old nephew, Logan, 4-5 days a week. Most of my friends have either moved away, or have gotten married and/or had kids, so I don't have many friends to hang out with. 

I've been feeling really stuck lately, and getting tired of the same routine and these same four walls, so on Friday, I decided it was time to go out. It's a long weekend here in Canada, and I have 4 days off from watching Logan, so I wanted to take that time to have a bit of fun and get some things done.

I used to go to the library at least once a week, wander around, and then sit and read. I hadn't done that yet this year, so I did that on Friday with my mum. We spent about an hour at the library (if you'd like to see what I got, I'm also a book blogger, and I did a Book Haul vlog at my book blog), then went to Giant Tiger to look around. It was a gorgeous spring day, and it was so nice to be out in the sunshine and fresh air. We also went out Saturday and hit the dollar store and Walmart. Two days in a row - a recent record for me, and it was beautiful both days, so I feel better about having been out.

One of my childhood best friends is getting married in four weeks, and her bridal shower and bachelorette party are next Saturday, so I was hoping to get a new shirt, and I need a gift for her. Here's the thing...another confession: I don't like shopping. I think it's because I've never had a lot of money, and the times I have had money (like right now - it's a rarity), I can't find anything I want or need. I've been busting my butt working out and eating healthier the last few months, and it's taking my body FOREVER to change, but because I'm between sizes, nothing fits properly, so nothing looks good. I'm in desperate need of a new bra, and I tried on probably six over the course of Friday and Saturday, and couldn't find one that fit right. ARGH! I also wasn't able to find a shirt for the shower or an outfit for the wedding. Double argh.

I did, however, manage to find two pairs of sandals. I have the worst time finding shoes because my feet are big and wide, and it's nearly impossible to find my size. I couldn't believe it when I found not one, but two pairs of sandals for only $5 each. What's great about them is that I can wear them for casual days, or for dressier occasions.

I was also really happy to find a pair of black cotton capris for only $7 that I'll wear for working out (I didn't take a picture of those, because I'm wearing them, haha).

I also needed some 'beauty' products. I was really hoping to get some John Freida Frizz Ease, but I didn't want to pay $9 for it. I was lucky enough to get some hand-me-down John Frieda shampoo and conditioner from a friend of a friend who was cleaning out her bathroom. I have super thick, super curly hair that's about halfway down my back, and it's getting out of control. This is the longest I've ever had it, and I love the length, but it's really frizzy and it never does what I want. I keep seeing all these beautiful hairstyles on Pinterst and on blogs, and thinking they look simple, but when I go to actually do them, my hair won't cooperate. 

I ended up getting Fructis Curl Sculpting Cream Gel, and TRESemmé Curl Defining Spray Gel. Together, they cost less than the John Freida stuff. I'm eager to see how they work. I love both Fructis and TRESemmé, so I'm hoping they're what I need. I also finally got a new compact - I have super shiny skin (it's a pain, no matter what facial wash or moisturizer I use, I can't get rid of the shine), so I'm glad to have that before next weekend when we'll be taking lots of pics. I also got some Bonnbell tinted lip gloss at the dollar store - I have really pale lips, and I think actual lipstick looks strange on me, so this was a good compromise...plus it was a dollar, you can't beat that!

My last fun find was a cute little Moulin Rouge notebook, also at the dollar store. I joined the DayZero Project, and started a 101 in 1001 list, and I wanted to have a journal to keep track of my goals and progress. As a writer, I've always been a fiend for notebooks - I have dozens of them, but I thought I should have a separate one for goals. 

And finally, on Saturday afternoon, I thought it was time for a self portrait after my little adventures into the 'normal world'. This is me:

I've been experimenting with braids. They're about the only thing I can do with my hair, but hopefully that'll change with my new hair products! I actually had a girl compliment me on my side braid on Friday. :-)

I have a million and one things to do over the next two days, but I might go shopping again, because I really do need a new bra, and I'm still hoping for a new shirt for the bridal shower. Plus, I got one gift for the shower, but I need something else. I was supposed to go shopping with another childhood friend who's my date to the shower and wedding, but I think she's forgotten about me, so I'm on my own for now!

Have you tried any of the products I mention in this post? Did you have any fun finds this weekend?


Friday, May 18, 2012

Flashback Fridays: Days with Grama

Flashback Fridays is a weekly meme here at Lost and Found. The idea is to talk about something from your past - a childhood memory, a favorite vacation, favorite music or movies or TV shows from the past, a special memory from high school or your days as a young adult, a big event in your life (grad, wedding, becoming a parent, going back to school, new job), games you used to play, childhood friends - anything at all. Every week, I'll post a Linky so you can link up your Flashback Friday post and we can hop around to visit each other and enjoy the reminiscing.

My Grama was always one of my best friends. We used to say we were ‘kindred spirits’ - we had this amazing, special connection.

I’m the baby in my family. My parents had me later in life, so my brother and two cousins are much older than I am. Because of that, they got to know Grama in ways I didn’t - they got to have sleepovers at her house, and have her cook meals for them, and bake them treats. They got to see her active, and have her play with them on the floor and run around with them and take them places. There have been times over the years when I felt almost cheated because I missed out on all of that, but then I realized just like they got a side of Grama that I never got, I got a side of her none of them got. Now I see I got the best parts of her. 

Me with Grama and Poppy
Up until the time I was 12, we lived in the country in a house that had actually belonged to my Grama and Poppy before my Poppy had a stroke and they had to move because they couldn’t handle a house. They moved to an apartment, then a retirement home, and then a retirement home/nursing home combo - Grama lived in the retirement part, Poppy lived in the nursing home part because he required more care.

After my dad died and we had to sell our house (a story for another day), my mum and I moved into the city, farther away from Grama and Poppy. We still visited them every weekend, but it wasn’t as easy to just pop over for a visit. There was a girl who worked at the retirement home who was very fond of Grama and who lived fairly close to me. The summer we moved, she used to take me with her a couple times a week to spend the day with Grama. We would do group exercises first thing in the morning, and then spend the rest of the morning in her room talking. We talked about anything and everything - books, history, school, friends, boys, family, you name it. Whatever my little 12-year-old mind came up with, she would listen and encourage me. She even indulged me when I told her I secretly believed unicorns were real.

Before lunch, I would go downstairs to the dining room with the girl who worked there and help her set the tables. It might sound weird, but it was a lot of fun. When I was finished with that, I would load up a trolley with dishes and cutlery for two, our lunch, and then take it upstairs where Grama and I would eat in the fancy ‘family dining room’, just the two of us. I loved that. I would get to serve her, pour our drinks, get her whatever she needed, and feel like an adult. Once in awhile, they had special meals like KFC, and we would eat downstairs in the main dining room with everyone else. In the afternoons, Grama would sometimes have a short nap, then we would visit some more, go downstairs to see Poppy, and then we’d do whatever activities had been planned - Bingo, musical entertainment, Dominos, card games, etc. It was so much fun, and all the little old ladies made a big fuss over me.

We also had a family friend who lived near our old house, and she had me over to her place fairly regularly that summer. She brought Grama over sometimes when I was there so we could all spend time together. This family friend taught me to play the piano, and I remember giving a 'recital' for her, my mum, and Grama. I still have the program I made in my Memory Box. I keep everything.

We were all heartbroken when Grama had to leave the retirement home and move to a nursing home. Poppy had passed away by then, and where Grama lived was up to fate - she had her name on a waiting list, and had no control over where she ended up. Luckily, she ended up in a nursing home just five minutes away from Mum and me, so we got to visit her more often.

Grama and I were always close, but in the year before her death, we became even closer. There was a short period where I didn’t visit her as often as I would have liked, or as I should have because I was so busy, but in the year before she died, I visited her as often as I could. I was always interested in our family history, and I made sure to ask her plenty of questions and write things down. I remember her telling me when I was a little girl that she wished she had asked her grandmother more questions, and I was determined not to have those regrets myself.

She and I had so much fun. She was my biggest supporter and cheerleader. Every week she wanted to know how my writing was coming, what I’d been doing, where I’d been, and hear stories about the boys (my nephews). She was fascinated with technology, even though she didn’t understand most of it. The November before she died, I went to all the events I’d never gone to before at the nursing home - the birthday tea, the bazaar - and I don’t think a day goes by when I don’t thank my lucky stars that I did that, because they were the last she’d have. We had a huge 99th birthday party for her that month, and I made sure I was never more than a few feet away from her in case she needed anything. She would visually seek me out once in awhile and give me one of her beautiful, heart-melting smiles. She always made me feel so needed and loved. 

When she got sick and went into the hospital, my mum and I spent quite a bit of time with her in the hospital. Even though she was sick, I have great memories from those nights. She was in good spirits, talking and joking, asking me questions and telling me things. Usually when she was really sick (there were a few times over the years when we thought we would lose her), she became really disoriented, but not this time. She was so strong, we all thought she was going to pull through - she was only three months away from her 100th birthday - but her body had other ideas, and it just couldn’t handle all that was wrong with it.

Life hasn’t been the same since Grama died. It’s been nine months, and I still feel lost a lot of the time. So much of my life centred around her. On a daily basis, I still find myself thinking ‘I have to tell Grama that’ or ‘Grama will think that’s funny’ or ‘I’ll have to take that to show Grama’. There are just some things you never get over, and I think her death will be one of those things for me. I didn’t just lose a grandparent, I lost a friend, a part of my heart and soul.

BUT…I have amazing memories of her. 27 years of wonderful, heartwarming, laugh-out-loud memories of things she said, places we went, conversations we had, loving looks she gave me. I have no regrets when it comes to her, and for that, I feel truly blessed. 

What were your grandparents like? Were you close to them?
If you did a Flashback Friday post this week, be sure to link up below! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Oh, How Pinteresting ~ #3

Happy Wednesday, everyone! I hope you're all having a great week. It's been a busy one here so far - I kind of feel like a chicken with its head cut off. I have this massive to-do list and only half the items ever seem to get crossed off. Something to be happy about though: just two more days and then I get a 4-day weekend! Woohoo! I still have to work those four days, but at least I'll be baby free, which is one less distraction/reason to procrastinate. Note: for those of you who don't know, I watch my 2-year-old nephew 4-5 days a week. As a writer, I work from home, so it's hard trying to work and be with him too, but thankfully my mum and I live together so she takes over baby duty when I need to work. 

Now, on to some pretty pictures! Oh, How Pinteresting! is hosted by Michelle over at The Vintage Apple. Here are some of my findings this week:

I mentioned in yesterday's post that I'm switching from coffee to green tea during the week for weight loss purposes. I knew green tea had a lot of health benefits, but I thought this was really interesting. Lots of reasons to drink it...now if I could actually learn to enjoy it...

This took my breath away. I would love to have a beach party here, or maybe even a wedding. It also looks like a great spot to curl up with a book...I feel all zen just looking at this. ;-)

This is so pretty, and it looks simple enough. I've never been able to master eyeliner on the upper lids, but I'm going to give it another shot. I need some new eye makeup, and I'd love to find a shimmery silver like this.

What can I really say about this other than it makes me want to get on a plane right this second and visit Paris? I went when I was 17, but I'd give anything to go back now as an adult and see it with fresh eyes.

These are just too cute, and they look so simple to make! I made frog cupcakes for Mother's Day from a picture I found on Pinterest (I'll be posting my results tomorrow or on the weekend), and now I want to try these. I just need to get mini cupcake pans first.

The Giant's Causeway, Ireland. Ireland is the #1 destination on my travel wishlist, and I've always wanted to see the Giant's Causeway. 

And finally, today's eye candy. I've posted pictures of Matt Davis from The Vampire Diaries the last two weeks, and even though I'm still obsessed with him, I thought I should branch out, so I'm posting a picture of my next go-to hottie, Ryan Gosling.