Look back and grieve over the past, for it is gone; and do not be troubled about the future, for it has yet to come. Live in the present and make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering. - Ida Scott Taylor

Monday, March 28, 2011

image by muntané

Each time someone stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope. - Robert F. Kennedy

Sunday, March 27, 2011
This post will have no coherence. Plus, it's 4:30am.

Blake Lively and her puppy. I never got over the cuteness of her furry little chico. The photo deserved a visual revival.

Brevard- I had the entire FW 2011 lookbook sent to me a couple weeks ago, and the above rings were my favourite items. I definitely recommend checking out their pieces if you're in the market for unique jewelry.

Here are a few March favourites: my Caudalie beauty elixir [I didn't have it for a month, because I ran out. Since I re-started my skin has been cooperating once again. I also discovered that the elixir substitutes as an aftershave for men. I recommend!], To Kill a Mockingbird [<3], and L'épi de Provence Lychee Rose hand crème (I want to put this all over my body because it feels so smooth, and delicious). In addition, I've been whipping out my mini business cards. I ordered four different types so I could decide which I liked best, and I'm very fond of the bottom two. The black card is the reverse-side of each mini.

I also love this tiger necklace by 1974. If it was a dude, I would marry it. 

How much pain they have cost us, the evils which have never happened. -Thomas Jefferson

Friday, March 25, 2011
It snowed. -_-

My weather-high is dead. Here are a couple photos from this month's challenge. I'm already 25 days in! I can't wait to wear flat shoes again, but I'm afraid this Flats-Free March has spurred on a new shoe addiction. Need more wedges. Need more wedges.

[Also, you can never go wrong with Free People and J Brand. Comfort + fashion = ideal.]

A few wündermuffins for this weekend:
+ Cropped sweatpants with heels via Dolan.
+ The Cataracs ft. Dev - Top of the World. Dev has a gorgeous voice; this has been on replay.
+ The Frugalista Files - it's a good read if you need motivation to become more financially savvy/stable.
+ I'm loving maxi dresses and maxi skirts lately. Some of my favourite looks have been by Shoshanna (formal), Splendid (for everyday and layering), Velvet (Sully - dress up/dress down), and this dress by L.A.M.B.
+ Glade's new room spray: Limited Edition Bring on the Blossoms. It smells so fresh and sweet [but not nauseatingly sweet because I detest that].
+ How to Start Your Day Calm, Cool, and Relaxed by Fitsugar.
+ Clogs. I'm just afraid of buying shoes online because my feet are so narrow and small... However, I adore the Ripple Buckle Clog by Madison Harding. In addition, UGG Boots came out with a great everyday pair, but the reviews online mentioned they run normal to wide. [Gosh, darn it!]
+ Manity Case by NYTimes. Dear dudes, please take care of your skin. You're not age-proof.

Cheers <3

Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush. -Doug Larso

Monday, March 21, 2011
Hola amigos!

The weather has been divine lately. I'm even peering over that rocky edge, just to fire-stare those fluffy, cold scoundrels hidden amongst cracks and soil vortices. I got my eyes you, Mr. Winter. Anyway, I'm testing out my striped Madewell shirt I ordered a while back, and juxtaposing it with florals. I've never mixed patterns before, so I have decided to start early this year; I will be pro come June.

And, quick update: I almost slipped TWICE in my flats-free challenge. But I was perseverant. Makes me feel all tingly and proud inside. I'm considering buying more comfy tall shoes, since I've come to the conclusion that most are pretty to look at, but tootsie killers come midday. More research is necessary. Anyone have clogs? Those look mighty fine to trounce in.


The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself. - Ernest Hemingway

Thursday, March 17, 2011
Hey everyone,
I thought I'd share some of my favourite looks for the upcoming spring and summer seasons. I'm not going to lie, the weather has been getting me über-excited. If I wasn't still on my flats-free March challenge, I would skip through the streets. However, the thought of spraining an ankle is too frightening to even fathom.
... I've got delicate joints.
 *prissy face*

Images from shopbop. [I spend way too much time on that site. Why oh why did they ever contact me!?]

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade. -Charles Dickens

Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Hola everyone,

Spring is in the air! Do you feel it? Are you...ready?!!
I find this time of year is just packed with anticipation and excitement for the warm summer months. Yes, can practically hear you planning your music festival dates, and pool parties from here (and by here, I mean my bed in Canada.) Anyway, all this + degree Celcius temperature on the Weather Network has worked its way into my drawers (oh my, which ones?!), hence the cupcake colors. Pastels...how season-inappropriate. Pfff. What have you guys been up to lately? Hopefully engaging in some wardrobe rebellion as well!

I bid thee adieu! *bow*

P.S. There was a dude on campus today wearing thick red-framed BC glasses and khakis with suspenders. I felt incredibly uncool. :(
P.P.S. How appropriate is Charles Dickens?

When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport; when a tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity. - George Bernard Shaw

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Yaowza, school is hectic this month! I have nothing to report, so here's an outfit from last week. As you can see, I have been fiddling around with photoshop (I think I'm getting the hang of it... it's all about layers & filters); although my cool wedges have disappeared, my tiger looks damn sexy.

P.S. This song has been on replay all weekend. Ughhh... brain infestation!

Slow down and everything you are chasing will come around and catch you. -John De Paola

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Salut everyone <3

Just to continue with the general school theme... here are a few relaxation tips for those high-intensity periods:
- Get enough sleep..Zzzzzz
- Drink tea (chamomile or lavender tea is great)!
- Eat 3 healthy meals a day, and keep high-energy snacks at hand.
- Meditate, or sit down in a quiet place for a 10-15 minute deep breathing session.
- Give yourself a break when you know you deserve it!
- Play some really therapeutic music in the background, such as nature sounds, classical music, or anything else you find soothing.
- Take a nice hot bath. Bonus if you've got bubbles, and a classic film playing.
- If you take anxiety medication, be proactive and take it before the stressful periods in your schedule.

Have a great weekend!

image: dustjacket attic

Academic Toolbox #1: Exam & Study Tips

Thursday, March 10, 2011
Bonjour tout le monde!
Today I am doing my first post dedicated to scholarly pursuits and habits. More specifically, I'll be sharing some tips that I picked up while surviving the wilderness of an undergraduate degree. [Convocation is in June. I just freaked out and logged onto Degree Navigator to make sure I had all my credits. Yes, 26/20. Bada-bing!] These nuggets of info may not work for all of you, but if I can lighten your stress load by even a small fraction, I will be content.

Exams/ Midterms
Start early. Start early. Start early.
You've all heard this before, but what the heck does it mean? Very few of us have the motivation to study 2 weeks before an exam so here's how to break it down:
- In lecture, write your notes out by hand. Studies show that doing so solidifies information into your memory. If you can hand write your class notes, and then type them out at home; that's 2 revisions before you've even started memorizing. Hooray!
       Example: 1 week before your midterm start doing handwritten notes of your typed lectures. Keep it moving nice and slow. If the midterm only covers 6 lectures, then do two a day for 3 days. For a cumulative exam, start doing so a week earlier.
       *** I keep tv shows/movies/blogs running in the background while I do my note-taking. I've got no motivation this early, but I need to have this done, so SOMETHING must keep me awake, and rooted in one spot. BUT, I always finish the allotted lectures before I go to bed. Even if I have to stay up until 6am, because I slacked off after lunch.
- Next: Spend one day slowly reading over slides/ original lecture notes. Never move onto the next slide/idea until you've fully comprehended the previous one. Keep a notepad close to jot down words you easily forget, key themes, questions, interesting comparisons, points you need to wiki, etc.
- Spend the next 2-3 days repeating the above. Read you slides meticulously, write down concepts & vocab, re-read, write more. You'll notice that by the last day your side notes are shorter and shorter.
- Day before the exam: read those summarized test notes you made on days 1-3. THIS IS MY GOLDEN RULE. Why? Because I'm so used to the slides that when I'm forced to recall them, I actually know a lot less than I thought! Now, when you can't remember a key note's accompanying image, grab the slide and star it. Do not freak out every time you forget something! It's better to make mistakes now than on the exam. I like making mistakes. WHY? Because I learn from them, duh.
- Night before exam: Read over any highlighted/starred notes and slides. Begin to jot down potential questions. After packing so much information into your noggin, you could write your OWN test. Seriously. If you have time, make one and switch it with a friend. This is a great idea if you're in a study group or have class pals.
- Day of exam: Show up early to avoid the stress of being late. Drink a tea. Relax. [I tend to sit as far back as I can in the testing room; I don't want to get distracted or nervous by people leaving before me. I used to think: "OMG am I dumb? Why can't I finish that fast?" Relax. You don't know how well they did. They could have failed! Not your problem- the sheet on your desk is. DO NOT hand it in unless you have given it all you've got.]

Alright, the above tips will help anyone writing a humanities test, OR a science test that doesn't include number computations & is just verbal regurgitation. The following are no-brainer tips that you should be implementing if you're writing mathematics or calculation-based exams:
- Before you start (and by start, I mean at LEAST a week in advance) organize all your chapter notes with accompanying problem sets.
- The best way to succeed is to do a ton of practice questions. You can't get around this. Memorizing will only help you nail equations needed to SOLVE the actual problems.
- Read the chapter, read your lecture notes, start working on easy questions. Don't do the LAST question of each section! Those are crazy hard, and you haven't been practicing enough. [Star the questions that gave you trouble.]
- Alright, so you do the practice questions that are easy to medium level, and leave the hard ones alone. Now what?
- Next: Review ALL the starred questions, and the proper ways to solve them. Are you getting the same type of questions wrong? Notice patterns, and address any issues. (Ie. Maybe you keep forgetting to integrate before proceeding to the last calculation.)
- Compile all the difficult questions from the textbook. This is going to be your mini-practice test. The midterm/exam usually doesn't consist of JUST complicated/hard questions, so this should be slightly more intense than the real deal.
- Past midterms. Past exams. Past anything you can get your hands on. The larger the array of questions you are exposed to, the more efficiently you'll be able to tackled the ones presented on the test. Spend 1-2 days going over any previous year's materials.
- Pack your bag with whatever you need for the test the night before: calculator, pencils, extra lead, two erasers, ruler, protractor, compass, etc.

Schoolwork/ Assignments
- Get an agenda and write EVERY due date /test date/ presentation/ social event down. It's extremely helpful to have a monthly calendar in your agenda, or a separate one. This will give you the big picture, and help you keep track of events weeks in advance. Hence, you can organize your time, and break up your tasks accordingly.
- Keep up with your readings every week. You'll be grateful when midterms and finals come around. By then, I just take notes on what I highlighted, and the conclusion.
- As I said before. Write out your notes by hand and re-type them on the same day [or else you'll forget some of the short-cuts you used, and a good chunk of your notes will be incomprehensible in a month]. Here are the Top 5 note-taking skills I frequently follow.
- Try not to skip class. I have a hard time with this, especially when it comes to certain science courses. (I prefer to listen to the audio version, and add notes to .pdf files). Find out what works best for you, for each subject. Example: I would NEVER miss art history classes. They're not recorded, and I need to see the professor pointing out certain details on buildings/paintings/objects.
- Make your personal work area visually appealing- sometimes it makes studying more fun & exciting. ^-^
- Don't bring headphones to the library if you are easily distracted- You'll end up watching youtube videos, or catching up on TV shows. DO BRING THEM if you need to drown out noise, and use music to focus.
- When writing an essay, compile all your research notes into one word document, and have the proper page numbers indicated (to avoid rummaging for hours through books & online articles, just to get your bibliography and footnotes completed). Print out your notes, read through them, and with a pen start making connections between your sources. I usually do all my research before I hammer out a thesis; it involves a lot more work, but it's worth it.
- Turn off your wireless/ Airport. You'll be surprised by how much work you can complete when you're clear of online distractions. [Note: this sometimes works against me, and I fall asleep instead. Hence, I do this at the library, because napping there makes you look like a lazy douche.]
- If you like background music, do it up. I can't listen to music while studying (only house/dubstep during breaks to keep me awake!), so I play this: sounds of a flowing stream.
- Another beautiful nugget for all the humanities students, writers, poets, etc. out there: Ommwriter. This program plays light background sounds as you work, plus the beautiful writing board takes up your entire screen so you're removed from distractions (and unaware of the time, which I like).

I hope these tips helped!
Good Luck 

images: first unknown, bottom two photographed by Alain Richard and styled by Anne Rabeux for Elle belgique Nov 2010.

It took great courage to ask a beautiful young woman to marry me. Believe me, it is easier to play the whole Petrushka on the piano. - Arthur Rubinstein

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Hola everybody,

I have posted my wedding reception outfit (moi & mom), as promised via my twitter. Above is the little black dress I purchased at BCBGMaxAzria in December. I finally see the appeal of owning something that's classy, fits like a glove, and looks bitchin'. Onto the shoes: the black pumps I am wearing are huge and cantankerous- I either slip, or slip and fall on my ass when I wear them. Unfortunately, they're dead sexy so I can't NOT wear them -_- Quick story: I broke out into cystic acne 3 days before the wedding, so I had flesh sores the day of the wedding, and while I was curling my hair I BURNT my freaking FACE! I'm hiding the skin craziness with my hairstyle, because it all happened on one side of my petite visage. Merde. I am most definitely disappointed with my skin's condition lately, because it's completely my fault: stress, lack of sleep, and improper diet during midterms = deep acne. Well, I learnt my lesson. But how do I avoid this come April? [Pondering pose]

P.S. Remember how I told you lads & lasses I was doing strength-training to put on weight? I gained 4 lbs in muscle since last month! Brap! I'm currently at my usual summer weight.. but in the winter. surreal

A shoe that is too large is apt to trip one, and when too small, to pinch the feet. So it is with those whose fortune does not suit them. - Horace

Tuesday, March 01, 2011
Hey everyone!
I've decided to revamp the 30-for-30 challenge into something more tailored to my petite vie: Flats-Free March. Basically, I will put to use the pretty heels and wedges that rarely see the light of day for an entire month. Below is Day 1. I will also attempt to photograph my journey, but alas, I am frequently bitten by the lazy bug. No promises- just details!

Voilà! The usual outerwear get-up once temperatures remain over -5˚C.

Oh! PS. I've been slowly amassing some study/exam tips for a post on academics. Expect that soon, since I get a lot of questions regarding school!