bisforbeau

Nail of the Day

OPIMy Private Jet 

Decided to go for a bit of a darker nail color this week. I tend to wear mostly pastel or brighter colors in the summer but for some reason I’ve had the urge to go darker. I was initially leaning towards a black polish but since I’m visiting my parents for the long weekend (and my mother hates black polish) this one would have to do. This is the re-formulated version of My Private Jet. I’ve heard that the original was much more holographic but had a terrible formulation. I don’t own the origional so unfortunately I can’t compare the two. This polish is smooth and easy to apply. I tend to apply 3 coats with all of my OPI polishes but you could probably get away with two

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Bag Lust

I don’t know what’s come over me today but I can’t stop window shopping (side note can it still be called window shopping if its online?) bags! After perusing brand after brand I somehow found my way to the Roots online shop. Now every Canadian loves their signature Roots sweatpants but I for one had never thought much of their leather accessories….boy was I mistaken! The bags are a simple elegance and for the quality (100% leather!) are at a very affordable price point. You better believe that I will be heading up my nearest Roots store to see some of these in person!

Village Satchel Tribe
a great casual bag, I’m obsessed with the look of this leather. A beautiful aged patina look. Perfect for casual errands, a light hike or a small travel bag.

Small Grace Bag Tribe

another bag in this gorgeous leather tone. Albeit the crossbody (which I happen to love) this would be a great work bag. Its less casual than the Village Satchel Tribe in its shape which lends itself well to a more formal setting.

Vintage Bag Tribe Leather Strap/ Side Saddle Tribe

Can’t decide between the two! Another great casual errands bag, perfect for heading out to the grocery store or the mall where all you need are a few essentials…have I mentioned enough how much I love the tone of this leather?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Annie Bag Box

And last but not least the big one. I will almost be running to the nearest freestanding Roots store to see this bag in person. I love the fringe detailing and the subtle accordion fold out, much less pronounced when compared to the infamous celine luggage tote which I actually prefer. My only gripe is the silver hardware but I’ve already fallen head over heals for this bag. AND it has a crossbody strap, I mean really could it be more perfect!?

Baked Onion Rings

When you get a hankering for something crispy, junky and fried theres little else that can hit the spot. That was exactly my mind set just a couple hours ago, I wanted fried and I wanted it now. Onion rings seemed like the perfect idea, however I decided to make one substitution…bake it! These onion rings definitely hit the spot without the extra oil and saturated fat. That’s not to say that these are something you should be making daily… but when you have that craving why not make it a little bit healthier?

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For the batter I had a 3 separate bowl system. The first bowl had flour, the second a combination of buttermilk, flour and egg. While the third had a mixture of breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, dried oregano, chilli flakes and fresh rosemary. These onion rings are simple enough to make: dip onion rounds in flour, drench them in the buttermilk mixture followed by a generous coating of the breadcrumb composite. Bake at 425°F for approximately 15 minutes and you’re finished!

While delicious on their own, these are equally good when dipped in Sriracha sauce. However if you’re feeling a little more adventurous I’m sure these would be fantastic with a chipotle mayo or cream-style dip. Yum!

First Impressions: MAC Mineralized Skinfinish Natural- Medium Dark

I’m surprised I haven’t mentioned it on this blog before but for a little over a year I’ve been working on reducing the size of my makeup and skincare collection. Now compared to other bloggers and vloggers, even at its largest my collection was still minuscule by comparison. However something happened in April of 2012, my minuscule collection was starting to overwhelm me to the point where I knew things just had to go. And so began my  downsizing process. I did back to back project pan’s followed by an overall project downsize and a purge. I’m almost finished my downsizing process (finally), and have come to the point  where I am completely running out of certain categories and can finally buy and replace my finished products.

Now that that little story is complete lets get on with the post :P. I had always been curious about MAC’s mineralized skinfinish naturals, I had heard such great things about the product and the beautiful finish it left on the skin. However I hesitated, both because of the price ($40 CAD including tax) and MAC’s infamous reputation of their face products causing breakouts on those with sensitive skin. However with as my mineral foundation reaching its last leg I needed a replacement and couldn’t get the MAC out of my mind. By the title of this post you know that I went ahead and bit the bullet! Here are some quick pictures of the product.

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The shade I purchased was Medium Dark. While in the store, under the bright white lights, Medium Deep looked to be a better colour match. However I’m glad I stuck with my initial instincts, after a quick swatch Medium Dark easily blended into my skin.

I’ve had this powder for less than a week and have used it even less than that so I’m not ready to give a review just yet. When people say this powder has light coverage they weren’t kidding, I can barely see this on my skin! I’ve tried this product with 2 types of brushes so far, a rounded powder brush and a flat top brush, I prefer using the flat top brush (not that it really makes a difference in terms of coverage) but will probably try a couple different brushes just to compare any differences. Although this powder gives virtually no coverage it does give a subtle glow to the skin; I’ve received compliments on my skin the few  days that I’ve been wearing it. I don’t think the product is breaking me out but I have noticed a couple white spots on my face so I can’t be sure just yet.

Haha this turned out to be a very non-conclusive first impressions post! Anyways be on the look out next week for my next first impressions post (its a concealor!)

A Nail Polish Haul

As promised on my last Nail of the Day post, here is a quick haul of my recent nail polish purchases. Now I want to preface this post by saying that I haven’t purchased a polish in quite some time now, and that I realize that this is definitely not a normal amount of polish to purchase in such a small time frame. However these are polishes that I’ve had on my to-buy list for quite some time, and by finding them on a sale… I just couldn’t say no. Here is a quick overview of all the polishes I purchased.

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deborah lippmans
Here are my Deborah Lippmann purchases. From top left to right: Cuticle Oil, Good Girl Gone Bad and I’m Not Innocent. I have yet to use any of these polishes however I have swatched the two coloured shades on my swatch wheels. Good Girl Gone Bad is a gorgeous polish with a deep magenta base combined with a pink/purple shimmer. This polish dried pretty matte on my swatch wheel, but a top coat provided a smooth glossy finish. I’m Not Innocent is a light slightly-yellow toned nude shade; as I said I have yet to wear the polish however from the swatch this may take the place of ‘my perfect nude polish.’ These polishes were all purchased from nailpolishcanada.com. The site will no longer be carrying the Lippmann brand so polishes are deeply discounted. If you are a Deborah Lippmann fan I would definitely suggest checking out the site!

essieNext up are two Essie shades. I’ve had each of these polishes on my to-buy list for quite some time now and finally decided to bite the bullet and purchase. Beyond cozy is an interesting polish, in the bottle it pulls more gold however when swatched it is a very finely milled silvery gold. If silver toned gold was a word, this polish would be its most accurate description. This polish is ALL shimmer; surprisingly the formula seems to be quite good; the shimmer is incredibly dense! Topless and Barefoot is another nude shade, this one is darker and more pink-toned compared to the Deborah Lippmann. I’ve wanted this polish  for almost a year now, however it never seemed to be in stock at Trade Secrets (where I typically purchase my discontinued polishes). I tend to prefer pink toned nudes against my skintone so I’m anxious to see if this polish will have been worth the wait!

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These are the last 3 polishes of my haul. I’ve already done a post on Butter London’s
Queen Vic so I won’t talk too much about it. This is my first Butter polish and while at first I was a bit unsure; the longer I had it on, the more it grew on me! Revlon Colorstay‘s Top Coat has been my go-to top coat since I purchased it about a year or so ago. The proof that I love it so much is that this bottle is a repurchase! Its extremely rare for me to finish a polish; In all honestly I can probably count the number of polishes that I’ve actually finished! I haven’t tried the matching Base Coat and decided to go ahead and pick one up. I found the Colorstay polishes on an AMAZING deal at saleevent.ca. At $2 a bottle I really couldn’t pass this up, not pictured are the other 2 bottles of top coat that I purchased…yes this is excessive however my rationality was that now I won’t need to buy top coat for the next 3 years 😛 and with shipping costs being $5 flat, I wanted to order enough to make it worth it.

Crumb cookies with Blueberry-Cherry sauce

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Decided to be a bit more creative today! I’ve had a bag full of chocolate cookie crumbs, purchased from bulk barn, sitting in my pantry for some time now; and finally wanted to put them to use. The idea of cookie crumb cookies intrigued me, however I had no eggs in sight so instead decided to adapt this recipe for a cookie crumb crust.

Surprisingly I had exactly 1 1/4 cups of cookie crumbs so I didn’t need to change up the ratios. I did add some vanilla extract and powdered ginger to the mix. The mixture wasn’t coming together as much as I had liked so I added a heaping tbsp of peanut butter (I was contemplating between using peanut butter and almond milk so i’m sure they would both work). Again it just wasn’t combining together enough to make free form cookies so I pressed the mixture into a 9-inch pan and baked at 350°F for 8 min. Once cooled I cut the crust into smaller pieces and set aside so they would further harden. Now these cookies on their own are delicious enough, but again as I said I was feeling creative.

For the sauce I adapted this recipe, I cut each measurement in half and still had plenty of sauce for a generous helping with each portion. I had a couple cherries left over from my breakfast smoothie (maybe 6-8 cherries) which I pitted and tossed in with the blueberries equalling a total of a cup of fruit. I also added some of the powdered ginger to merry both components. The sauce was extremely easy to make, just make sure to frequently stir the sauce while it cools to prevent sticking to the bottom of the saucepan. I impatiently waited to add the sauce until it was almost entirely cooled. Delicious! Not overly sweet and a nice combination of flavours. Would definitely recommend!

Political TV Fever!

I seem to be gaining a growing interest in politics…well at least TV politics. What started as a mild curiosity last summer, has quickly turned into a full fledged political TV addition. I’ve increasingly found myself drawn to political dramas and dramadies (dramatic comedies), and keep my radar on high alert at the sign of a potential new series.


The West Wing
: I’ve just finished the second season; I know, I know I’m about 7 years too  late. But in my defence I was about to turn 8 when the series originally aired so I’m going to say I wasn’t exactly in their target demographic! This show has been really refreshing to watch. Its definitely more of an adult drama through its tone and writing and I appreciate the lack of love triangles, the use of older actors (not old!) and the focus on politics as the source of drama. I know the series has been highly praised by political science professors and critics alike and its really not hard to see why, the show comes off as a smart drama with intellectual ideals. I will admit there are times when the show comes off as a bit preachy however I commend Sorkin for using a devout religious democrat (President Bartlet) and a smart, eloquent republican (Ainsley Hayes) rather than resorting to common stereotypes. I also commend Sorkin for not resorting to stereotypes against the Middle East, the original run was during 9/11, or cheap republican comebacks against George Bush, the entire series took place during his presidency. I’ll likely do a more in depth post on the series (just started season 4!), so expect that in the near future.

Scandal: If you’ve read my most recent entries, you’ll notice that many of them seem to be Scandal related. The protagonist of the series is Olivia Pope, a crisis manager, and her complicated love triangle with the first family. Because Olivia works in crisis management, the show deals with more salacious events rather than the seemingly everyday events portrayed in The West Wing.  While I appreciate that Shonda has chosen a republican as her presidential protagonist, he seems to have some very democratic views. Fitz was a governor from California, a state which is recent years has been more on the democratic side, his chief of staff is an openly gay male, and he hasn’t appeared to have a deep sense of faith by any means. Really the only republican sense we’ve had from him is his connection to ‘Big Oil’ (Hollis Doyle). I seem to have a love/hate annoyed relationship with this show. In my opinion the writing has vastly improved from the long winded repititious soliloquy filled pilot episode. The show has a stronger focus on the personal rather than the workplace (which is completely fine!) however there is a growing amount of drama for dramas sake rather than to extend the storyline. For instance take the revelation of Olivia’s father; while part of my weekly must-see television the series is quickly venturing into soap opera territory.


Political Animals:
A 6 episode mini-series that originally aired last summer on USA. I did a previous post on my thoughts on the pilot episode.  The series follows  Elaine Barrisch (Sigourney Weaver), a once presidential candidate, who is now Secretary of State, trying to make a name for herself in politics away from her promiscuous husband Bud Hammond(Ciarán Hinds). Bud just so happens to be a former president himself (Hilary and Bill Clinton anyone?). Sigourney Weaver and Ciarán Hinds are just a drop in the bucket in naming the well known actors involved with the series. While I do wish the series had been renewed for a second season, with the heavy hitting cast I wouldn’t be surprised if funding or scheduling were the issue. The main focus of the show is the turmoil surrounding the Hammond family, however we do get to see a fair bit of politics when Elaine Barrisch is in her element.

VeepAn HBO comedy series I started watching a couple weeks ago. Veep follows Selena Myer (Julia Louis- Dryfus) a fictions vice president and her senior staff. I find the series to be a refreshing take on politics, most likely due to the lighter nature of a comedy vs an hour long drama. While the entire cast is well portrayed, in my opinion the scene stealer is Gary Walsh, the vice president’s personal aide, portrayed by Tony Hale. Gary is extremely loyal, Selena’s confidante and carries a briefcase which he nicknames Leviathan! The series currently airs Sunday at 10 and its in its second season.

The Newsroom: Another series I began watching last summer (the new season begins airing on July 14th!). The series revolves around the fictional news network Atlanta Cable News (ACN) and their attempt to change the way the news is presented. After a very public tirade, Will McAvoy (a news anchor played by Jeff Daniels) returns to work to find a new executive producer, his ex-girlfriend MacKenzie McHale (Emily Mortimer) who criticizes the way he had previously been anchoring the news. She tells Will (who is currently leading in the ratings), that instead of reporting the actual facts he is just trying not to step on anyone’s toes. The changes they have made to the fictional station are brilliant. Will acts as both an educator and as judicator, both educating the public on real news issues while holding politicians and big-wigs to the words that they’ve promised. While this isn’t a show about politicians per say, given the setting at a cable news station its almost impossible NOT to mix politics and the news. The show is quite different from the West Wing, while the tone is very much the same, we don’t see any representation of the White House. Similarly to Political Animals, I did a post last summer on my thoughts for the complete first season; you can read it here.