Friday, November 30, 2012

the perfect black legging

They're good, really good. Thick and warm fabric so you don't freeze in the winter;  higher waisted so as not to create love handles- always a bonus!; little bit of stretch but keep their shape-no baggy knees; they're long-for all you tall girls ;);  and they have stirrup bottoms so they stay down in those tall boots!

I got mine on Black Friday for $49, on sale from $89. They're sold out online but check your local store! They're a little expensive but worth the splurge! Mine have quickly become a closet staple!

sing along

I am absolutely in love with The Lumineers - Hey Ho. You know one of those songs, when it comes on the radio, you turn the volume to max, loudly sing along while smiling and tapping your foot along to the beat...? Anyone with me?  Well, watch the video here, get into it, and you just try not to sing along like a fool next time it comes on the radio!

Monday, November 26, 2012

some thoughts.

I had a strange Monday. I was weirdly emotional, breaking into tears a couple times. I have no reason to be sad, but just had a feeling of being overwhelmed. I took a deep breath, got myself organized and am feeling much better! 
Just some thoughts from this weekend and today...

{ I can't wait to celebrate the start of 2013 with our Bubbly Golden Champagne Flutes }

{ My only Black Friday purchase - this delicate lace top from Banana Republic that I got for 40% off! }

{ I helped my Momma out today with her company, Potluck Planters - 
I'm so proud of the beautiful designs she comes up with }

{ Our weekend was filled enjoying warm, festive drinks with great friends }

{ Specialty Coffee }
1oz Baileys
1/2oz Grand Marnier
5oz Coffee
Dip the rim of the mug in granulated sugar
Top with fresh whipped cream

....We're off to softball tonight for game 2. I forgot to share, but last week, at our first game, as I was trying to impress D by catching a pop fly- I ran (full tilt) into a teammate. I wasn't watching where I was going and by the time I looked down, it was too late and I bounced off of him and fell to the ground - instantly breaking out into hysterics. Pretty darn embarrassing!

Friday, November 23, 2012


Have you donated yet? If you haven't, please do - we have a week left in November. There's no escaping cancer, we all have been affected by it in some degree. It's not easy for any of us, but supporting cancer research brings us all closer to finding a cure. Chances are you know someone participating in Movember, so go donate to them. It doesn't have to be much, but every dollar counts.

Want to donate?, get started here.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

holiday time: tips for dining out

With the holiday season nearly upon us, I always find it's a time when you gather with friends and often end up eating out a lot. I'm the first one to admit that I love going out for meals, but it's sometimes hard to balance out a healthy diet with all the temptation. I came across an article in an old Chatelaine and thought I would share some realistic ideas to help you through the holiday restaurant rush!

1. Snack before you go. 
I'm not talking a full meal, but have a small, healthy snack like a piece of fruit or some nuts. By the time you get to the restaurant your brain recognizes that you're no longer starving, and your hunger won't cause you to overeat.

2. Get dressings and sauces on the side.
I love sauces, but unfortunately, most of the time they are filled with unhealthy sugars and fats. Asking for dressings and sauces on the side allows you to monitor how much you're using and still enjoy the flavor, while at the same time saving some calories!

3. Leave some food on your plate.
You don't have to finish every bit of food you are served. Often time, portions are larger than they need to be, so eat slowly, enjoy the flavors and listen to your brain when it tells you you're getting full. You'll leave the restaurant feeling good and you'll have yummy food to enjoy for lunch the next day, it's a win- win!

Mastering Menus: My favorite types of food to go out for have to be Italian and Japanese. Here are some tips on how to navigate those tricky, tempting menus!

Italian: Go for marinara (tomato sauce), marsala (wine sauce) and primavera (vegetables); Avoid alfredo (cream sauce), parmigiana (made with cheese) and cannelloni (stuffed with cheese)

Japanese: Order more sushi and sashimi, brown rice and edamame; Avoid tempura and anything else deep fried!

Hopefully these tips help you out in the coming weeks and allow you to enjoy time spent with family and friends, while still looking sexy in that holiday dress!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

going to bed with a moose

Camp life really got to me. My time up north has me now wanting moose on my duvet cover... There's also a bear and a wolf for all you other wild animal lovers.

a sparkly, pink dress.

Wouldn't this dress be so dreamy to wear to an outdoor wedding come summer? The skirt would be so flowy and fun to dance in and the soft pink is so delicate and pretty. Also, the beading work is so magnificent. I would love to add this dress to my closet for fancy pants occassions. Too bad it seems to be sold out everywhere, shucks. 

Oh, and while we're on the topic of Ted Baker.... I began browsing their website after looking at the Sherway Gardens expansion plan. Which, low and behold, includes a Ted Baker store! (along with Kate Spade, H&M, Zara, JCrew, Tory Burch - are you giddy with excitement too?)

Monday, November 19, 2012

hostess gift idea: coasters

You're probably thinking, really Kim, coasters? But hey, they're practical -who wants to spend time cleaning water rings off their table tops?! - and as I'll show you they can be fun and stylish! 

First, these agate coasters, they are absolutely stunning. The colors are so vibrant and the natural beauty of the stone is hypnotizing. Even gifting just one, I would proudly put it on my coffee table as decoration! 

Second, I think these wax seal coasters are cute for the more casual hostess - or even a host?! Perfect to bring out on to the patio with cold beers in the summertime.

Finally Coastermatic, the most personalized option. To start, you need an Instagram account. You login to your account and Coastermatic pulls up all your instagrammed photos. Then you choose your favorite four photos and they are printed onto stone coasters, wrapped up and shipped to you for 25 bucks! I have debated over these for a year, and after taking quite a few photos on Instagram, I think I might have to order a set for D for Christmas! I think these would be the most fun to have on your coffee table!

And ofcourse, for an added little treat, you could pair any of the above coasters with a nice bottle of vino! Try my personal favorite next time you're at the liquor store!

monday morning sunshine

I don't know if you're completely sick and tired of Psy's Gangnam Style, but here's a video with a little bit of a twist. I personally think it's amazing and hope it brings a smile to your face on this chilly Monday morning! Watch the video HERE!

Friday, November 16, 2012

have a happy weekend

{ First eggnog latte of the season! }

I hope my holiday posts haven't been overwhelming lately... but Christmas seems to be everywhere! Incase you don't follow me on instagram (kimberlyannemclean), here are a few things that managed to get me in the holiday mood this week! 

I'm off to a girls dinner tonight and D and I are viewing some condos tomorrow! Enjoy your weekend!

{ Candles at Chapters - I can happily boast I've always been on Santa's "nice" list :) }

{ The most adorable "posts that stop you from driving in to a building" covers I've ever seen }

{ Gingerbread cookies at Chapters, have I mentioned cookies with icing are my ultimate weakness? }

Also, the Santa Claus Parade is on downtown on Sunday! One of my favorite memories from being a little girl. If you can't make it down, watch it on CTV at 4:30p.m Sunday!

one line a day

I got this little book from my best friend Katie and it has to be one of my little favorite gifts. The pages are dated consecutively and you fill in the date along with some sort of fun fact or special memory from that day. I keep it on my bedside table and while I don't fill it in everyday, (I only wish my life was that exciting) I enjoy writing in little notes about events that have made me happy. I am definitely one to reminisce and I look forward to reading this book in the years to come and experiencing all sorts of nostalgia!
Get your own five year memory book here!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

signature scent

I bought a bottle of Flowerbomb in Paris when I was 16 and have worn it ever since. I really have no idea how to describe the scent, but it's beautifully delicate and I think it's a forever type love. Some friends say that when they smell it they think of me.

I'd love to know, do you have a signature scent? Or is your dresser topped with different perfumes, one perfect for every occassion?

holiday movie musts

{ Will Ferrel in Elf - watch my favorite part here }
{ Funniest Christmas Movie ever: A Christmas Story }
{ Childhood favorite re-make: Jim Carey in The Grinch Who Stole Christmas }

There are some things that just get ya in the holiday mood and one of my favorite traditions is watching Christmas movies. My all time favorite Christmas movie has to be A Christmas Story. Everyone in my house hates it and I'm forced to watch it alone in my room every year, but I still love it and die of laughter every time I watch it. And really, why wouldn't you want to watch two grown up funny-men dressed up as an elf and a grinch!? I can't wait to snuggle up with hot coco and get in the Christmas mood!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

grand electric

{ scribbles on a piece of copy paper = drinks menu }

On Saturday night D, my parents and I headed down to try the acclaimed Mexican joint, Grand Electric. When we pulled up there was a massive line stretching down Queen Street. Luckily it was just a crowd lined up for the restaurant to open at 6, and we made it without much of a wait. It's a casual, t-shirt and jeans kinda place, with a laid back vibe, loud tunes and communal tables - a great place to go with friends. There are about 8 different types of tacos on the menu, 2-3 bites for $3.50 each. They also have a menu of sides/appetizers, ranging from about $6-$9 - we tried four different ones and  everything we had was delicious! I couldn't pick a favorite taco, both the ones I tried were awesome.  

If you're looking for a place with great food and drinks and a cool vibe, I'd definitely give Grand Electric a try! Just be warned, they don't take credit cards, and apparently you can almost always expect a line! But it's worth the wait, I promise!!

{ spicy caesar rimmed with ketchup chips }

{ the remnants of the super tasty homemade tortilla chips, guacamole and salsa }

{ beef cheek taco }

{ baja fish taco }

{ the AH-mazing desserts : hell cake, pumpkin pudding & key lime pie }

{ learning how to say scorpion in Mexican, will come in handy at some point, I'm sure }

{ a little heart hiding in my beer foam }
{ ps. this is the only bar in Toronto that serves Bellwoods Brewery beer! }

balsam & cedar

I am absolutely obsessed with the scent of my new candle. Imagine standing in the middle of a forrest trying to pick a Christmas tree. Yup, the perfect, deep woodsy scent to get me in the holiday mood!

PS. Whoever does the buying for Chapters is a freakin genious! I went in for an agenda, got completely sidetracked, wandered for an hour, fell in love with practically everything and left with much more than an agenda.

Monday, November 12, 2012


I recently borrowed a friend's lipstick and have been on the search for a similar shade since. I found what I was looking for with Covergirl's Euphoria. It has the perfect warmth and richness for the cooler winter months and I can't wait to wear it for upcoming holiday parties. 

I know what santa's bringing me for christmas

My Mom, D and I had some fun at Sherway on Sunday spending mad money*. While perusing the mall, trying to decide what to choose, I came across this coat at the BCBG pop-up store at The Bay. I have been on the search for a black dress coat and this coat met all the items on my check list; 1. metal neutral (buttons are black), 2. detailed (leather trimmed & flirty, skirted back) and 3. most importantly -great fit! So the story goes... I tried it on at The Bay, fell in love, nearly choked when I saw the pricetag, and left the store sans coat.
Later on last night, D asks what the coat looks like, so I look up the coat on the website and notice the American price, which is almost $100 less! Then, I see that there's an additional 20% and free shipping?! adkljnfa!?? The coat is $200 cheaper online - what the heck!
Ms. Claus (aka Holl-Doll) looks over at me, and gives me the go ahead for it to be ordered as a Christmas gift and as I proceed to the checkout, only to realize you need both an American credit card and shipping address. Boo. 
One might think the journey ends there. Nope. Called my Aunt in Milwaukee for a credit card number, and searched facebook for all my American friends - one of whom is coming up for a visit next weekend! It was probably the most random order form, billing to one state, shipping to another and email updates to me. But- long story short, the jacket is on it's way!!! I love a good bargain!

I just have to say, how ridiculous is it that shoppers in America get to save $200 on the exact same product?! If this was a rare situation, it might not be so bad, but it seems everything is cheaper in the states!

*Mad Money: A tradition that D's family shared with me. Usually on December 26,27 or 28, you go to the mall and each member of the family gets a set amount of money in cash from Mom and Dad. Then you decide on the time frame (i.e. an hour) and you split up. Each person spends the time searching for something they want. Mad money is not to be spend on needs! Time to indulge in what you want! At the end of the set time frame you meet back up, and any money you didn't spend gets given back to Mom and Dad! I did it one year with D's family and we had so much fun meeting up after the hour to see what each person had chosen and gotten with their money! Maybe a new tradition to try with your family?!

the illusion of space

While on my walks through Ikea last week, I saw these dining chairs. I have an acrylic chair that I use at my vanity counter but without a pair, it's a little bit useless for a dining table. What I love about this chair and the table below, is that in a small space (I have high hopes for our new home, but I'm also realistic that many condos are tiny!) neither of these pieces would take up space - visually. The pieces being translucent, creates the illusion of space and doesn't cut the flow of a room.

I also love this bookcase. Storage will be key in a small space, and the modern tall bones of this piece will be perfect for books and trinkets alike. The fact that there is no back or sides allows for the same sort of flow as with the acrylic pieces. Air and light can travel through the space and no division is created - a great way to make a small space lovely and livable!

take a seat

You know it's going to be a good Saturday when your boyfriend suggests going to Ikea!... Or it just confirms the type of dork you are for getting excited to go to Ikea for the second time in a week. Well, regardless, we walked around the stylish design mega store today and both of us were getting really pumped at the thought of returning when we actually have our own place. 
We have a good selection of furniture from university left overs and family hand-me-downs, but we've agreed that we don't want our place to look miss-matched and random. We're realistic about our expectations and plan to do an inventory of what we have and see what type of space we end up with. At that point we'll prioritize what we need and look for pieces we both love.

I fell in love with the idea of this leather chair. I love the caramel color and the art deco design. I think I might look online to see if I can find something similar, second hand, and then reupholster with the fabric of our choice.

 And while I can't even afford a cashmere sweater, this chair is even more so out of the budget. But I think it's worth bookmarking for a much later time in our lives. Who wouldn't want to sit on beautiful grey chair covered in cashmere wool?! Drool worthy for sure!

*Bonus: both chairs come with foot stools!*

Thursday, November 8, 2012

jumping the gun

Ok, I might have jumped the gun just a little bit buying my Christmas cards already, but Christmas is only forty-seven sleeps away. Sending holiday greeting cards (or any snail mail) is one of my favorite things to do and I always look forward to finding "my card" each year. This year I went for something a bit more fun-and glittery!- and got a great deal on the box of 12 at Home Sense. And of course, I needed a festive candy cane pen to write them all with ;)
I'd love to know, do you send holiday cards? Do you like receiving Christmas cards? (just so you know, you're nuts if you say no... :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

tuxedo trouser (+ shopbop sale!)

I'm really digging the classic aesthetic the tuxedo stripe is adding to plain 'ol pants. It's a little bit masculine while being sexy at the same time. I'd choose the Tibi pants for a classy twist to the daily work wardrobe and the J Brand velvet pants to spice up an outfit for upcoming Christmas parties. 

You can pick up all three of the above styles on Shopbop, and maybe check out their huge SALE going on right now. Shopbop sales are the best, perhaps get a start on early Christmas shopping?!

obama for president!

When Barack was a senator in Illinois my Aunt and Uncle took my Grandma to see him speak. They lived in Milwaukee and had seen him speak before and knew, that as an American citizen, my Grandma had to see him. They listened to him speak and my Grandma got to meet him after his speech. My little eighty year old Grandma returned home to us in Mississauga, telling us she had met the next President of the United States. His name was Barack Obama. Low and behold my Grandma was right, and the day before she passed away my Mom was proud to share that he was elected as the 44th President of the United States. In her delicate state my Grandma squeezed my Mom's hand, her only way of celebrating and sharing her joy of such a wonderful man being chosen by the American people.

Watching CNN right now, my stomach is churning just imagining Mitt Romney being elected as President. I can only hope the American people pull through and make the right decision. Obama for President! #vote #Obama2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

the royal

This past weekend, D and I took my Grandma to The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair at the Direct Energy Centre. I vaguely remember visiting the fair as a youngster but couldn't really recall what to expect. The fair was celebrating 90 years and even my Grandma told us how she visited the fair as a student 70 years ago. We spent a few hours walking around exploring. We tasted some of the amazing meats and cheeses from Ontario farms, and came home with some feta and flavored goats cheeses. We browsed the equestrian fashions - which are actually quite stylish! The leather boot selection was drool worthy - there was even a shop that would custom fit the boot of your choice - with over 200 style options. We finished off by visiting the farm animals, my favorites being the piglets and chicks - really doesn't get much cuter than baby farm animals. The fair is on until November 11, if you're looking for a fun way to spend a few hours, I'd suggest checking out The Royal!

Friday, November 2, 2012


I am in love with every single bag on Coriumi's Etsy shop. A husband and wife duo from Lithuania create screen printed leather bags, each one original and unique.  The geometrical patterns are right up my alley, adding a simple yet detailed aesthetic. Even better, price wise the bags are totally reasonable. These bags are officially the first item on my Christmas wishlist, the only problem will be choosing which one I want!


{ Our friend Drew at Climber's Rock }

Earlier on this week we joined friends at their rock climbing gym, Climber's Rock in Burlington. D and I had been once before and we thought my sister and her boyfriend might enjoy it, so we asked our friends if we could tag along this week. You can walk in off the street and its about $20 for a day pass and shoe rental. 
It is a little intimidating at first because some of the climbers are really good, but everyones really friendly and the routes are labelled with tape so you're able to choose routes that meet your skill level. 
I was more comfortable returning to the gym a second time and really enjoyed challenging myself. There were about three different times where I tried a new route and wasn't able to complete it the first time. I would walk away and re-examine my approach and try again and really push myself to succeed. 

Now, I don't mean to sound to intense about rock climbing, but it felt really good to really push my physical and psychological strength! Leaving, I was really proud of what I accomplished and look forward to returning and challenging myself even more! It's a wonderful environment too - with people who are so encouraging and supportive!
What we did was called bouldering, so you aren't roped into a harness like you might think. The walls that you climb aren't too tall and the floor is a thick padded matt so it doesn't hurt if you fall. So you can approach the wall in your own time and there's no pressure!

If you're looking for something fun and different to try, I would definitely suggest bouldering! I must warn you though, expect the sorest forearms you've ever had!