Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Pre-Approval on It's Way!

OMG...I could get pre-approved for a mortgage that would allow me to buy my dream house!

I have to wait a day or two to find out.

My dream house could be within reach!!!


Quiz: Are You A Beauty Junkie?

Everyone loves quizzes, right? Take this short online quiz to find out if you truly are a beauty junkie....

Here's my result...


Are You a Beauty Junkie?

My result:
Beauty Aficionado

You definitely enjoy trying new products and keeping yourself up-to-date on the newest beauty trends—but you usually can be reasonable. Although your bathroom may not be overflowing with skin and hair care products, you probably have a few different ones to choose from on a daily basis. It really seems like you know how to indulge in beauty and makeup products that help you feel and look good, without going overboard.

Are You a Beauty Junkie?

Take this quiz!

A Desperate Housewife

I thought I'd take a stab at trying to be Mom of the Year by making some cookies, because I have all the time in the world to do so!

Being that a cousin of mine is a Pampered Chef consultant, I bought their Cookie Press to try out. I've always wanted one, so I got one on sale.

So, in between making lunch for my toddler and I, and listening to my other son wailing away in his crib, I mixed up a batch of the "spritz cookies" according to the enclosed recipe.

This thing comes with 16 cookie discs that will allow you to create different designs for different occasions, from pumpkins to maple leafs to christmas trees. Seeing it was just Valentines' Day, I thought I'd try my hand at making heart-shaped cookies.

So I fill this cookie press up with the dough I mixed together. It seemed a little dry, but I followed the recipe, so continued on. The way you're supposed to use the cookie press is to stand the cookie press onto a cookie sheet, press the trigger once (the contraption resembles a caulking gun) and pull the cookie press straight up, to release the dough and, voila, leave a nicely shaped cookie.

Well, if I could've videotaped my fiasco! I couldn't get the dough to come out of the press on its own, so I ended up peeling the dough off the press and configuring the dough on the sheet. I got so fed up by the time I got to the bottom of the mixing bowl, I simply was rolling them into balls in my hand and flattening them onto the sheet. I tried different discs, thinking I should start with something more simpler, but I still couldn't get it to work. I actually was getting a kick of making the heart-shaped cookies, because my first few batches were looking less like hearts and more like penises with engorged testicles...or on the flip side, boobs-on-a-string. I wished I had taken a photo of them! All lined up in a row....LOL.

But they were tasty. Think those Danish butter cookies in the blue tin, but without the decorated sugar topping. Yum. Maybe I'll give another recipe a try next time, to see if I can get away from making "tasty penises" to something more wholesome-looking.

EDIT: Here's a sample pic! LOL

Monday, February 16, 2009

Procratinating & Insomnia

Same thing?

Time to go to bed, but I found a pretty puzzle to waste my time with. And it's befitting of my blog layout, so here it is....

Click to Mix and Solve

Play THIS at 1 in the morning and tell me how easy it is to go to bed!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Real Estate....Part II


We went to see that house this morning, and I am STILL drooling over it. It really is perfect! We wouldn't have to move (ie. downsize) until the kids are grown, and we're retired at 60, which will be when we can pay it off anyways.


Just for fun, I'll be contacting my mortgage company tomorrow to find out what we can be pre-approved for. And if it looks good, then my mortgage broker will have some ideas on how to proceed. I'm still waiting to give the go-ahead with my realtor to see if we even have the power to make an offer.

I'm getting that sick feeling in my gut like I did when we bought our current house 7 years ago. Am I sick at how much more the mortgage will be, or sick about making the commitment to change?

I almost, almost, wished I hadn't seen it in the first place. It'll continue to haunt me.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Real Estate...Here We Go Again...

It's for sale!

This house I was swooning over last summer is back on the market again, a little bit cheaper, but still oh-so-expensive. It's almost $1 million.

But, yes, that be the story of the market up in these neck-of-the-woods. It has everything I've been looking for in a home: 4 bedrooms upstairs, dining room, family room, 3 floors, patio, 3 car garage (looking for two, but I'll take three!), at least 2 bathrooms, a Master ensuite (with jacuzzi tub!), an island in the kitchen with stainless steel appliances, close to a good school, and even a 1-bedroom suite to rent out if we want. It's perfect!

I downloaded the floor plan off the realtor's site ("yup, it's still perfect!") and - god dang it - the Realtor emails me back with a private showing tomorrow! I emailed him back, to be courteous of course, that the time he suggested wouldn't work for us...but if he could schedule one in the afternoon instead. I might as well follow through, right? I missed the Open House last summer because my kid was sleeping in the car when I chanced upon it, and besides...I could definitely not afford it then. I don't know what makes me think we can afford it now...maybe I'm just dreaming. Or maybe we can make it work...somehow?

Pinch me tomorrow...let me drool for a little while longer.

Eye Brushes, Anyone?

I may be slow on the ball here, but I came across a site that sells those black-barrelled Brown Faux Fur taklon brushes for, what looks like, a great deal. These are the same brushes that are found on Aromaleigh, Adorned With Grace, and Buff'd, but only stock the eye brushes. All of Kim's brushes are $4. 85 each and shipping is reasonable (at least for this Canadian!).

Shop at Kileng here!

There's a February special right now. You get 4 brushes, the Large All-Over, Pointed Sculptor, Line & Smudge, and Smudger brush in a romantic organza bag for $17. Shipping is $2 for you US folks and $3.50 for us Canucks. It's a very pretty site, complete with some tutorials on how some of these brushes can be used. There's even a cute set of bowls to pour your minerals on, ready for gift-giving too.

I'm very tempted...

For reviews, you can head to Aromaleigh. I've always wondered about these brushes, and the reviews are very positive! Aromaleigh won't ship their brushes outside the US, while AWG, while a little more pricey, includes free shipping on all orders to US and Canada.

Your choice...but happy shopping!

Friday, February 13, 2009


Nothing like finding something you knew you had but haven't enjoyed yet...

Enter my espresso machine.

When you get married, you get a barrage of useful and not-so-useful gifts. Gifts you thought you wanted and when you got them, not so much anymore. Gifts you thought would be great to have because it's pretty, but pretty isn't pretty when it's in a cupboard. And gifts you get that you didn't ask for, but got, and be gracious you got anything in the first place.

I got married 6 years ago, and have TONS of kitchen-stuff I have never used.

Again, enter my espresso machine.

My husband, who gets in these moods, decides to be Mr. Gourmet (with all the baking he does, albeit, always cookies), and he whips out the espresso machine. I did that once eons ago, "whip it out", and although I'm a Starbucks freak and love my coffee, I couldn't figure the thing out. So back in the cupboard you go!

My husband, of all people, figured it out last night. After almost 7 years in the cupboard, I figured the thing was destined for Sally Ann. Well, I must say, I had a pretty darn good cup of espresso last night, and that made me feel, well, darn good! (Given the day I had yesterday, even some tea would have sufficed...but bring on the caffeine!)

So I tried out the thing myself this morning...not bad! I managed to froth myself up some steamed milk too and enjoyed a cappuccino. In fact, I made another one and am enjoying the fruits of my labour. :)

The screaming baby sure sounds a little more distant right now...I'm in heaven, if only for a while.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Fed Up!

I'm tired, cranky, and fed up!

I just want to disappear away from my kids. Is it awful to want some peace from it all? The crying, the whining? I'm about ready to scream at the top of my lungs if my 2-month old doesn't stop crying. I am so tired of having to pick him up every single time he cries. Fed up. Cry, keep on crying! I've had enough!

And my toddler is not helping matters. I'm been trying to potty-train him, but unless you watch him CONSTANTLY, you can't catch him needing to go. I don't want to have to watch him constantly! I don't want to watch endless TV with him. I'm too tired to go outside and let him run around, because I can't get everybody ready to do so. It's just too much...I just want to open the back door and sneak out and not come back for hours. I could never actually do that, of course, but it's really nice to fantasize doing so and escaping this nightmare of a mess called Motherhood.

What have I had today? A cup of coffee and about 3 of my husband's home-baked chocolate chip cookies. Nutritious. Oh, and I ate the crusts of my son's grilled cheese sandwich I made him. Calcium. There's nothing else in the house...grocery shopping is just another one of those tasks left undone here.

Still wailing away....hmm......

I'd call my parents to see if they'd help out, but they're not calling me, so I interpret that as meaning they're happy to have a day to themselves, away from clingy grandkids. Don't blame them. Now, I'm just stuck with them until my husband comes home.

Maternity leave sucks. I'd rather be back at work. Another 11 months to go.

Maybe if I lock myself in the bathroom and cry, I can escape this life for just a moment...but I've got yet another diaper to change.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Too Many Foundations!

Since last week, I received a few more hauls in the mail. One from Buff'd, then Adorned With Grace, another from LaurEss, and yesterday from Blusche.

I only have one face! And so many foundations to try!

First off, here was my order for a full-size in Saffron foundation and Mais setting powder from Buff'd, in addition to some blushes and other powders I wanted to sample. More on my Buff'd experience later....

Then arrived my Adorned With Grace samples. How pretty they were, all wrapped up! Appropriate, it being Valentines Day soon...

I ordered her 15 baggies for $12, oh which 14 of them were foundation! I didn't want to reorder any more samples, so I thought I would just cover my bases. A lot of them I placed aside, seeing how fair the colour was. I settled on trying Grace 4.2, a combo of peach/yellow/olive. I found it the best match though I think there's a touch too much peach for my colouring. I'll have to try this out a few more days. Otherwise, it's still a pretty good match:

I ordered a full-size Divine Oil-Control Primer Powder. The first ingredient is kaolin, with mica being second, which is super great for my oilies. I actually kept forgetting to apply this primer, because it's in a 4g jar (with powder puff to keep everything under the sifter!) and not in a baggie like everything else I'm testing. I finally used it once a few days ago, and it's fabulous! I apply it with the puff to my T-zone and it really works!

I also splurged and bought the 12 eyeshadows for $7 baggie special - got some neutral shades and some for highlighting and base colours. I've tried a few colours, and they go on very nicely. I wish I had some pots of the ones I've already used: they're that nice I'd buy full-size ones now even though I've still got samples. In my FOTD above, I used AWG shadows, though I can't recall which I chose to test.

I also received as a bonus from AWG a sample baggie set of all 8 of the new shimmering blushes. They're all very nice...I can't wait to go through all of them!

Then my LaurEss samples arrived, shrink wrapped to cardboard, well-packed:

Of the four shades I bought (Pure Gold, Pure Yellow, Warm Gold, Fresh Gold) the one I tried and liked was Pure Gold. I think Pure Yellow would suit me too, but Pure Gold has a touch of olive in it, and it matched very well. A friend of mine dropped by Sunday morning, and I had already put my LaurEss Pure Gold on, but nothing else (no eyeliner, shadow, blush), and she had to stop mid-sentence and ask me if I had any makeup on, because she couldn't tell and my skin looked so perfect. Now, ain't THAT a compliment?! So I couldn't help but ramble on about how fabulous MMU is to her. I whipped out my samples and exclaimed it's virtues!

So with that, LaurEss gets a BIG checkmark as a HG foundation. I ordered the Elemental formula but realized a few hours later that I should've ordered the Minimalist formula for oily skin. I emailed customer service and got a reply that they would be happy to switch the formulas for me. Yippee! But when I received my package, I did not receive the Minimalist, only the Elemental. I emailed CS back to ask them if the shades are equal across the formulas (in case I loved one shade, I could just order the correct formula). They said yes, it's equal, but that they would send me the Minimalist shades anyways, at no cost! Even Lauren, herself, emailed me and told me she was sorry for overlooking the order, and they would send it out the next day (this was Friday when I emailed her) USPS Priority. How's THAT for Customer Service?!?!? I was totally floored about how they handled my order, that I just have to order a full-size in the Pure Gold.

I found the LaurEss foundation very fine-milled and creamy. The Elemental foundation didn't last as long on me as I think the Minimalist would, but its got buildable coverage, and very, very natural. I can't wait to try the Minimalist.

My new love, until then, has got to be Blusche Minerals! I finally have it on today, with Mocha Java being the best shade (Creme Brulee and Brazillian are too light for me -- all in the Warm category). It's finely-milled like LaurEss and goes on dreamily. I thought it went on too light, but I think it warmed up on my skin, as my forehead doesn't look as ashy as I thought when applying.

The problem with my skin is that I have uneven tones. It's like some parts of my face, namely my cheeks, almost down to the jawline, is a fairer, more pink/cool colour. That's why when I compare foundation between my face/chin and neck, there's still a stark difference, even though my face colour has evened out nicely. My chin tends to look the ashiest when I apply foundation...which is why it's so crucial to find the right shade AND formula!

I hesitate to add an unmade up, just-washed face, pic...see what I mean?

Anyway, here's my Blusche order...I got the Petal and Coral blushes for free!:

$1.75 CDN (yay!) for a three baggie set, so I ordered three 3-baggie sets, one for foundation, one for primer and finisher, and one in concealer and correctors. I got the Medium Primer, the Veil in Matte (other option is Glow) in Phoebe (neutral tone) and Shelley (slight yellow tone). I chose the Yellow corrector for undereyes and the Green corrector for any red spots on my face and a concealer in Medium. $5.25 CDN for 9 baggies. :) Had to pay $3.50 shipping (it's Canada Post, which sucks), but it should've been free, like Buff'd offers, since everything fit in a standard 6x9 envelope with a 56 cents stamp on it (or whatever the cost is for a domestic shipping...it's not $3.50!). Oh well, the samples were cheap to compensate.

On to my experience with Buff'd...

I tried the Saffron on last week, and I felt like I just left the tanning salon. The coverage is super thick, and goes on rather cakey if use a Flat Top like I was using. I tried to keep a light hand, but perhaps I need a kabuki or something. The samples I had were in Concealing, so I might need to try out the Original formula. If I didn't apply any primer, the foundation cakes pretty fast, and I get balls of foundation collecting on my nose. Not pretty.

I emailed Jenn at Buff'd to ask her what I could do with my full-size Saffron to lighten it up a bit (I know! I jumped the gun when I bought the Saffron!). She emailed back quickly, suggesting that I mix with Moccasin to get the right shade, as adding Porcelain, a pure white, may not work as well. Although I thought that Moccasin was too yellow, after not having much success with a 50:50 mix of Saffron:Moccasin, I decided to try Moccasin straight. This is what I got (I only have mascara and blush on...so it's not my final face):

It's a bit yellow on me, looking a little brighter in person, but it's a much better match than anything with Saffron in it. It just doesn't have any olive in it to tone it down. It's still cakey on me, as I only had my Flat Top to apply it. When I finish my Moccasin sample, I may order myself another sample in another formula, to see if I can get away from this cakeyness. Meanwhile, I have a full, unopened jar of Saffron which I can't open until I really tan. So unless someone wants to buy it off me, this baby will have to keep until August or something!

I'm wiped out! If only my skin could take habitual washing, I'd wash my face several times a day to test all the foundations at once! As it is, I can only test one a day....my makeup routine is taking so much longer now, now that I have such a selection of foundations to play around with!

Facebook's 25 Random Things

I spewed off some ramblings last night while checking my Facebook page. 25 random facts, habits and goals I thought to share on my blog as well. Don't judge me...I am who I am! Happy reading!!

25 Random Things

1. I was a huge Debbie Gibson fan. Still am.

2. I was the clerk who took Trevor Linden's photograph when he wanted to rent movies at Mega Movies (this was about 12 or so years ago). I kept the other copy that was supposed to go with his file. I think I still have it.

3. I was also a Kevin Costner fan....until I heard he cheated on his wife. SOB.

4. I shop online...at times, a lot.

5. I own bowling shoes.

6. I hate mold. The deep, black, icky kind. Seriously, it creeps me out.

7. I put on my socks first before my pants. Yes, deliberately.

8. I wear socks to bed. My feet get cold.

9. I need to lose 30 pounds of pregnancy weight...I'm hoping by June.

10. I ran a half-marathon in 2 hours and 16 minutes.

11. I dated a guy for 10 years...then he finally asked me to marry him. I guess that makes me patient.

11. I planned my wedding in 9 months. No, it wasn't an emergency wedding. I just didn't want to wait any longer than I already had.

12. I blog.

13. I used to bite my nails.

14. I hate eggplant.

15. I can't share my toothpaste. The idea of your toothbrush on my toothpaste gives me shivers.

16. I still go to confession.

17. I signed up to take acting lessons downtown while in high school...then chickened out and got a refund.

18. I can spend all day at my computer, if my husband let me.

19. My car has seen speeds of 180 km/hr. It didn't seem as fast at the time.

20. I've been at my job for over 11 years.

21. I'm double-jointed.

22. I type an average of 80 wpm.

23. I had the worst case of cystic acne ever...2 rounds of Accutane!

24. I own a squash racquet and court shoes.

25. My name is Cheryl, and I'm a Pack Rat.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

My Hauls are Coming In!

Ok, so it's not as large as some you all out there, but it's always nice to receive anything in the mail.

So last week, I got my two hauls from Buff'd, with all the samples of foundations and powders I wanted to try. Here are the pics I promised to post.
Five foundation samples in Almond, Moccasin, Buff, Saffron, and Warm. The two bottom samples were freebies from Jenn, the owner, Cozy, an eyeshadow and a setting powder in Neutral.

Here, you can compare the colour diffs between four of them. Saffron suits me best, I think, and I ordered a full size yesterday.

Here was my second haul from Buff'd. Foundies in Caramel and Camel, an eyebrow powder in Midnight, another two free samples in Cozy (again!) and Tricky, a NARS dupe of their blush in Orgasm. Botton row: Setting Powder in Mais, Finishing Powder in Flax, a white blush in Whisper, and Illuminating Dusts in Canvas and Candlelight.

Last night, I received my ebay purchases...my UDPP and my Ben Nye's DC-01 Contour Rouge No.1. Yay! I love the Ben Nye...thanks Christiana!

The second vial is for my sis.

I think the colour turns out a little lighter here, but it's a nice brown for contouring.

And today I received my Silk Naturals package. 11 days posted from the States...that's pretty good, given it was shipped on a Friday and it's Tuesday today. It was wrapped all pretty in pink tissue:

I opened up the brushes first...ooh la la...I love the flat top. It's so dense! The fiber optic brush will be PERFECT for blush. Small enough to get on the apples of the cheeks!

Pretty dense flat top!!!

The lippies are very nice. Birthday Suit and Bliss, a Bobbie Brown clone of Brownie. Very creamy, not drying. Birthday Suit is very pigmented and much darker than I thought it would be, for a nude gloss, but it's very nice. Bliss looks like an extension of my inner lips, if that makes sense, and it a nice everyday kind of stick with still plenty of colour, with a slight pink.

I bought Climax which is a also NARS dupe of Orgasm. I should compare Buff'd's Tricky and SN's Climax together...too bad I don't have the NARS to compare with :(

The Brown Sugar eyeshadow I selected as my freebie is gorgeous! It's a rich brown with shimmering flecks of highlight. It's a very creamy feeling, not chalky. I don't know if I could use this in the daytime...it looks too sexy! :)

Same goes with the Mogul eyeshadow I got as a bonus. It's a silver white, great for the inner eyelid.

I wonder what will come in tomorrow!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

My Baby Shower

Yesterday, my coworkers gave me a baby shower. It has only been 2-1/2 months since I last worked, and only a month and a half since I saw everyone, but it was nice to see those who came, doing what we do best...chit chat and eat!

I miss my coworkers more this time around than I did when I was on my last maternity leave 3 years ago. Then, I just couldn't WAIT to leave, as work and everyone associated with it was getting under my skin. I had already been working for 8 years straight by then, and I was in dire need of a break from work (vacations didn't count!). This time around, three years later, I miss the camaraderie, and even the actual work and deadlines, if you can believe it.

Cute baby clothes aside (and they are sooo cute!), it was just nice to see them, even though I felt like an outsider looking in most of the time.

Ok, back to enjoying the rest of my maternity leave....until Jan 4, 2010!