Monday, October 31, 2016

the impending swap

Ok, it's official - Christmas is coming!!! The bucket of Halloween candy was emptied by all the little kiddies tonight and the countdown for my favourite holiday is now on!

I'm always invited to at least one cookie swap every season and do my best to find an interesting recipe that might stand out amongst the gingerbread, shortbread and sugar cookies (not that I have anything against those traditional favorites). I just came across this recipe for white chocolate dipped peanut butter stuffed chocolate cookies... #amiright? The recipe seems a little labor intensive, but I think the final product is worth the extra time. My mouth started watering the minute I came across the recipe!

What are your go-to recipes for the annual cookie swaps? 

(PS. I promise to take a break on the Christmas posts until later in November, I just had to share a little bit of my excitement!)

weekend in wellington

We just got home from our second annual Halloween weekend with Acadia friends in Wellington. We rode bikes around to local Prince Edward County vineyards, feasted on some wonderful meals and danced the night away at the Hayloft Dancehall. We won the costume prize last year with our shark week costume, and attempted to reclaim our title this year with our taxidermy costume (unfortunately I didn't get a great photo of the final look). We lost to a group of girls who dressed up as Cats from the broadway musical, who were very deserved of the title. 

It was nice to get away and spend time with great friends. The brainstorming has already begun for next years costume!

{ Wellington has the most beautiful homes and B&B's }

{ tasted lots of wine at my favorite, Norman Hardie }

{ we brought home a few bottles to enjoy over the winter too! }

{ we had brunch at the local Courage Cafe }

{ turns out rubber masks are very hot and don't have great visibility, 
but we had some good laughs dancing around in them! }

Friday, October 21, 2016

a beautiful gift

I was lucky enough to celebrate my bachelorette with a close group of girlfriends last weekend. We went up to a family friends cottage and I couldn't have dreamed of of a more perfect getaway!! My bridesmaids and a close friend had planned the weekend, and among all the other surprises, surprised me with a beautiful monogrammed leather tote bag.

I had mentioned in passing a few times, about how when I got married, I wanted to get a good quality everyday tote bag with my new initials (I plan on changing my last name to Gray). Well, I'm lucky to have friends who picked up what I was putting down because they chose a beautiful eggplant colored Baggu leather tote, and had K G discreetly monogrammed on the side. D joked that I couldn't use it until we got married, but I haven't been able to resist and have carried it with me everywhere this week. The leather is buttery soft and I can already tell it's going to be a favorite wardrobe staple for a very long time!

Friday, October 7, 2016

happy thanksgiving

{ beautiful view of the six }

Thanksgiving always feels like the official beginning of Fall and I'm loving the sunny, crisp weather we're having here in the city. We're going apple picking tomorrow and have two family feasts to look forward to! We've had fun celebrating the Blue Jays victories this week and although it's been a busy couple of weeks, they've been very fulfilling. 

I hope your weekend is filled with time spent with family and pumpkin pie!
Happy Thanksgiving! xx

{ there's something about new workout gear that provides major motivation }

{ a beautiful marble notebook we will use to recite our wedding vows! }

{ delicious desserts to finish off an amazing meal at Richmond Station }

{ prep for a recent girls night at home }

{ my first hot chocolate of the season, one of my favorite treats }

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

my skincare routine

Since getting engaged I've been putting a huge emphasis on my skin. It's been one of my biggest beauty insecurities so I've been diligent about paying extra attention to my daily routine and the  products I'm using. 

In addition to monthly facials that I've been getting, here are some of my favorite at home products... 

Unfortunately, I'm prone to small blemishes and the occasional pimple (which makes me feel like I'm 13). This Origins Super Spot Remover acne treatment is great for drying out pimples but doesn't over dry and redden surrounding skin. The La Roche-Posay Cicaplast was described to me as a beauty SOS cream and it really helps heal blemishes and lessen scarring. 

In between my facials, I'll do 2-3 at-home masks. I'm a fan of how my skin reacts to Origin products, and I love the Clear Improvements charcoal mask. The charcoal feels good at application and leaves my skin feeling super clean. I use a Fresh soy cleanser when I travel and like this Rose Face Mask as a less intense alternative - plus it smells like rose water.

One of the tips and feedback I hear most after my facials is that I need to moisturize more. I've used the same daily Neutrogena moisturizer ever since I can remember and have added an Olay night cream into my routine for the past year (it was rated by some beauty editors as the best drug mart night cream). I've also had fun with these I'm Real Aloe Sheet Masks I picked up in New York, they leave my skin feeling hydrated to the max!

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I'd love to know - what are your beauty go-to products? What's on your bathroom counter at the moment?