Heather’s Bucket List

Have you ever noticed how sometimes the Universe wants you to think about something? Well, this past week I stumbled across a friend’s blog and saw a great post on her Bucket List (for those who don’t know, a Bucket List is a list of things you want to do before you die or “Kick the Bucket”). Shortly thereafter, a group I’m in started talking about Bucket Lists too.

As someone who loves lists and dreaming, it’s strange that I have never written one out. (Further to that, one of my nicknames in High School was Bucket. Clearly, this is THE list for me). Well, I can take a hint. Clearly now is the time for me to start thinking about it. I think I may even make a separate “Bucket List” page, up at the top of the blog here, so that I can update it as I accomplish things.

I will also include things I have done that were on my mental list.

  • Graduate High School with Honours
  • Get a University Degree in the Arts
  • Travel to New Orleans
  • Own a cottage on a lake
  • Travel to Ireland and Scotland
  • Write and Publish a Book
  • Own my own business
  • Learn to Crochet
  • Have two children
  • Get a full sleeve tattooed
  • Go on a road trip in my own car
  • Visit Halifax
  • Learn to Quilt
  • Dye my hair black
  • Get my nose pierced
  • Get Boudoir/Nude photos done
  • See Tori Amos live
  • See Neko Case live
  • Honeymoon in Jamaica, just like my parents.
  • Own a house
  • Own a car
  • Live by the water
  • Knit a sweater for myself
  • Knit a colourwork piece (like Scandinavian mittens)
  • Learn to spin yarn
  • Learn to do pottery
  • Be able to do tarot readings without using reference books
  • Reach our 20th Wedding Anniversary
  • Sexy times with a lady
  • Travel to Newfoundland
  • Travel to PEI
  • Travel to BC
  • Meet Charles de Lint
  • Go Scuba Diving
  • Do a craft or art class with my sister
  • Do a craft or art class with my Mom

What is on your bucket list? Have you been able to accomplish much on it already?

New Sex Ed Curriculum in Ontario: In Her Words

Today, an article from the National Post crossed my path through a friend’s wall on facebook. I have been looking forward to hearing about the new Sex Ed curriculum in Ontario. It was an interesting read. I am actually thrilled that there are major changes coming. I was also super thrilled to see my bestie’s name as one of the parents they interviewed. Sarah is my sister. She is my people. She is also a high school teacher with three beautiful children. I spoke to her this morning after reading the article, and discovered she had said quite a bit on the subject and only a tiny bit was shared. With her permission, I wanted to share her actual responses she sent the reporter in the email interview. Not just to give her the opportunity to share her full response, but also because I agree with many things she says.

(Note: The Interviewer, Sarah Boesveld, will be identified by bold, Sarah Baker, my friend, will be identified by italics)


Now, I have not seen the new curriculum – only what was mentioned in the CBC article, and I can say some of it made me a little wary. I am wary, though, because I don’t want my kids to grow up. I want them to stay innocent and sweet and continue to think that unicorns are real and that all people are good. But the fact of the matter is, the unicorn thing has yet to be proven and some people suck.

 All children need to know all of the facts about sex so they are prepared to give consent or to say no. We prepare are children for various things throughout their lives, why not sex? If we hide it, and teach them that it is only discussed behind closed doors, it becomes something dirty and naughty (not in the good way). Do I want my kids to run out at the age of 12 and have sex? Heck no! Do I think teaching them about sex will encourage this? NOPE! I think learning about it will help my children understand it and know that it is special, but that it can be dangerous. I want my kids to be informed so they make informed decisions.

 Kids need to know that not all girls like boys, and not all boys like girls, and that this is ok. If we start teaching acceptance early, our children will feel more comfortable with who they are, and they will hopefully celebrate and love themselves regardless of sexual orientation. My children know that their uncle, my step-brother, is gay and that he will someday marry another man. And you know what? They understand and accept without question. When they are in the know, it is not scary. It is simply reality.

 

Ok – so on to your specific questions (sorry I am so long winded!)

What’s your reaction to what you hear will be taught in school and at what age? 

I really think that it is the perfect age to be educated about sex. Kids are smart, they start to ask questions. We shouldn’t hide sex – it is the very reason we have our beautiful children. Do I want to be talking to my kids about it? No. Will I? Yes, but I am happy to know that my kids will have a separate education at school where they can potentially ask questions that they may not be comfortable asking me or their dad. Kids are going to eventually have sex, so why not teach them how to be safe so we can prevent more 13 and 14 year olds from getting pregnant. Let it be a natural part of life and their education. As I said above, if we inform our kids properly they are better equipped to make informed decisions on their own, which is ultimately what we want for our children (or should want).

What kind of sex ed did you get as a child? From both your parents and your school?

I remember sex ed starting in grade 5 and we talked about girls getting their periods.  That is pretty much all I remember about it, but I know that we talked about sex “on the school yard”. We knew what sex was, we weren’t stupid, but we didn’t really know much about the logistics, so to speak. We never talked about safe sex. Next up with my high school grade 11 biology class, but that was more the scientific side.

 My mom bought me puberty/sex book with some fun cartoons. It answered a lot of questions that I never would have had the guts to ask her when I was 11, but it did let me know that sex is a good thing, but it was important to be safe. I still didn’t have anyone who I could go to with questions. I remember that a lot of the teen magazines also talked about it. And to be honest, that is likely where I learned the most about safe sex.

What do you hope will be taught in school? What do you plan to tell them yourself, if anything?

I hope they teach my kids that sex can be a lot of fun, as long as both parties are willing. I also want them to teach them about the LGBTQ issues that many kids are dealing with. So many kids think there is something wrong with them because they don’t like who they are supposed to like, or they are trans. So many of these issues can lead in to mental health issues. I know I will be open with my kids, and they will know that it is ok to be who they know they are, but it would be nice if the same message was being given at the school level as well.

 I also want them to know about safe sex and the proper protection to use. BOTH boys and girls need to know that no mean no, and that it is ok to not be ready to have sex in any form. Sex needs to be normalized within school walls.

 I know many parents will not agree with me – they, like myself, have a hard time with their kids growing up. But it is going to happen. Instead of fighting it, we should work with this schools and let our children know that they can ask any questions they want. Give them the information and let them decide what they are going to do with. Kids are smarter than we give them credit for – but maybe that is what parents are scared of?

You mentioned being anxious about answering any questions your kids might bring home about sex  – why? 

Like I said before – I don’t want my kids to grow up. I want them to stay little and innocent. My eldest still has not asked about sex, and when she asks about where babies come from, I can truthfully tell her that she and her brothers came out of my tummy (I had c-sections), although I have told Annie that some woman have babies come out of their vaginas, and she just shrugged her shoulders and went on colouring. My stomach does flips at the thought of answering the tough sex questions, though, but maybe that is because sex was never normalized for me? Between my mom just giving me a book and never talking to me about it, and the church telling me it was bad, I wonder if that is part of my anxiety? I never had that type of conversation modeled to me, so I question my ability to answer the questions. I know this sounds ridiculous, but as parents we become so protective of our kids that we can be irrational at times. I think discussing sex is hard because it is such an intimate act that is done behind closed doors and never openly discussed in front of children.

 I know when my kids ask me the questions, I will answer them, but I will not seek them out to tell them about sex. I know I am not alone in this, so maybe it is good that kids are going to be taught about sex, so they do bring questions home?


Thank you, Sarah, for sharing your interview with me and giving me the opportunity to share it with my readers.

It is my opinion that children are becoming aware of and curious about sex at a very young age. I hope to have an open dialogue with my children about sex, and have already started discussing the very basics with my 3 year old. Teaching our babies and toddlers consent starts with respecting their bodies and giving them the right to refuse physical touch. I want our son (and future other kiddo) to feel comfortable coming to us with questions, concerns and what they are going through.

Review: Ipsy February Glam Bag

Hey lovelies,

Happy Valentine’s Day, Lupercalia or Just Another Saturday to you! I was super pleased to receive this month’s Ipsy bag this week, just in time for me to look super pretty while sitting around watching Team Umizoomi and eating chocolate! This month, the theme of the bag was Ipsy Love. Here’s what I got:

Ipsy's February Glam BagThe Bag: I love the bag! Super cute. A little small, but kind of perfect for throwing in your purse.

The Loot:

Emite Make Up Professional Eyelash Curler

Ok, I have to admit I was excited to see this. I don’t have an eyelash curler, and I’ve always wanted to try one out. I love that it comes with replacement rubber pads. Unfortunately, I didn’t see much of a difference in my lashes for having used it. I am blessed with curled lashes already, so I think for me it’s an unnecessary step. Still good to have though, especially for those times that I want to feel extra fancy.

ModelCo Blush Cheek Powder in Cosmopolitan

I am a fairly dedicated Nars fan when it comes to blush. I pretty much exclusively use Orgasm when I wear blush. That said, part of what I enjoy about Ipsy is having the opportunity to try colours I wouldn’t necessarily pick for myself. That is the case here. I’ve always been a bit nervous about the more vibrant blush colours. Cosmopolitan is described as ballerina pink, but I would disagree. It’s brighter and richer than that. It goes on sheer and smoothly. I really enjoy the little pop it gave me. I will definitely use it again.

Mitchell and Peach Fine Radiance Face Oil

I was not thrilled when I saw this. My skin is ridiculous and tends to break out with minimal provocation. I have heard great things about using oils on the face, but I’ve still been too nervous to try it. I decided to give it a go, just to see. It was ok. A bit of a pain to apply. I put the drops on my finger tips and then distributed it on my face from there. It did give me a bit of a moisture boost for the day, and I haven’t broken out yet. My makeup went on quite smoothly over top and I didn’t feel greasy. Still, not sure I will use it often.

Eva NYC Up All Night Volumizing Spray

I have very fine hair, and a lot of it. It loves to lay flat against my head before suddenly puffing out at my ears. So, that is to say that anything that can help my roots be more lively is fine by me. I really enjoy the smell of this product, and the mist is quite light. My hair didn’t feel crispy or gross after using it. I haven’t used it for heat styling yet, so I will have to report back on that later. Still, definitely something I would use as part of my routine.

City Color Cosmetics, Creamy Lip Stain in Flirtini

Sadly, this one broke in transit. I was able to get enough product out of the packaging to give it a try anyway. Thankfully, Ipsy customer service is amazing and they are going to send me another one. Much like the blush in this month’s bag, I wasn’t sure about the bright pink colour but I went for it. Honestly, I kind of love it. It goes on super smooth and buttery, and is really quite pigmented. The stain itself lasts a fair bit of time, but would definitely require some reapplication through out the day. Also, because my skin is so dry, especially around my mouth, I found that I ended up with a bit of a lip liner look as it fades. This could be solved through reapplication and exfoliation before use, I think. Definitely throwing this one in my purse.

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In the sunlight, here is my look for this month. Don’t mind the crazy hair.

Close up of this month's look, using all of my glam bag haul. Want details of what I used? Check the bottom of this post.

Close up of this month’s look, using all of my glam bag haul. Want details of what I used? Check the bottom of this post.

So, over all it was a good bag. I love the pinks, and the hair mist was great. The eyelash curler was fun. The face oil was ok, but that’s fine. I’m a bit of special snowflake when it comes to my skin.  Did you get the Glam Bag this month? What did you get and what did you think of your haul? Let me know!

Used in this month’s look:
  • Mitchell and Peach Radiance Oil
  • Make Up Forever HD Foundation
  • Makeup Forever Highlighting Concealer
  • Benefit Boi-ing Concealer
  • Makeup Forever HD Microfinish Powder
  • Physician’s Formula Bronzer for Contouring
  • ModelCo Blush Cheek Powder
  • Benefit High Beam Highlighter
  • Urban Decay eyeshadows
  • Too Faced Better than Sex mascara

A bit more serious

The last while I have been thinking about this blog, and my audience (hi new folks!). I have some things that have been brewing in my mind lately, but I am concerned about the sudden change of tone. A while ago, I sent a question to Meghan Tonjes about this very point and, though not a blogger, she encouraged me to write what feels right, and my audience will either choose to read or not. There’s no point in stressing about it. So, here we go.

My theme/resolution this year is self love, and self acceptance. I have been doing a lot of thinking and working on the barriers that I have to truly being me and loving myself.

I’m not sure if this is typical of someone of my age/phase of life, but things seem to just be clicking lately. I seem to understand or “discover” certain things about myself, or in the world that I identity with and suddenly things make sense. I have been thinking about the last few years and how my friendships and life have changed so much. It occurs to me that while I miss some of my old friends, I do not regret the life I have now in anyway. Word that an old friend thought I had “let myself go”, and had become boring and lame reached me recently. I wasn’t sure how to feel about that. Sure, I used to talk about travel all the time. I used to want to move abroad for a few years, I wanted to teach English and have grand adventures. I wanted a family, sure, but I craved excitement and change (not atypical for a teenager).

Me, a million years ago.

Me, a million years ago.

Then, my whole world changed with my parents being ill. Suddenly I was anchored here, and life became far too exciting and my whole world became unsure. Is it any wonder that I have since decided that I love being in my home, surrounded by my loves? Sure, I still enjoy adventure, but it isn’t a yearning any more. Instead, I crave family, solid friendships, reliable people. Maybe this means I’ve grown up, maybe I have become boring… I just need to remind myself that in the span of 5 years, I went through an incredible amount of trauma and loss. I have earned this time of rest. Oh, and fuck anyone who feels that I owe them beauty, thinness, and any kind of excitement or stories. My kid’s development and my latest crafts may bore the shit out of you, but it’s my life and I’m happy. Don’t like it? Don’t be a part of it.

This is my life now <3

This is my life now <3

The next thing is incredibly personal. I considered posting this solely on Tumblr, but I think that this is important. This has to do with sexuality (specifically, mine). So, if that sort of thing isn’t your cup of tea, I would recommend moving on.

I have been reading a lot about LGBT+ rights lately and have been feeling so many difficult things. You see, I have identified as bisexual for a long time. I have not been open about it these days because my parents were homophobic and I faced a lot of negative reaction in my 20s. Specifically, I have been told that I don’t fall under the Queer umbrella, that I am a “fake” because I married a man. I was in this local online group, about 10 years ago, while I was trying to sort out my sexuality and I was thinking about coming out. There was this one woman in the group who was kind of a leader to many of us. She confronted me one day and announced that because I hadn’t been in a relationship with a woman, wasn’t “out”, and was currently with a man, that I wasn’t really bisexual, that I was faking it, participating in a trend. She accused me of being a tease to woman for the sake of attention. I was in such a vulnerable place and her words hurt so badly. It shut me down. I bottled everything up and hid it all away.

Recently, I have been reading more about pansexuality and feel like perhaps that is a better identity for me, because I find that I am attracted to a person due who they are, rather than based on any sort of gender identity they have. I have heard that pansexuality is considered transphobic because it separates trans folk out of the gender binary of bisexuality, but I don’t think I agree. Anyway, through my reading I have seen that it is extremely common for bi/pan folks to be excluded and ignored from the LGTB+ community, and that my experience wasn’t uncommon at all. I believe so strongly in equal rights for all people, and inclusion of all people, that I feel that it is time for me to share all of this. To be out, outspoken and to claim my place in the queer community. This is terrifying to me, but that’s why I have to do it. I have so much to learn, but it’s part of who I am. I deserve this. heathernow

What would you do with an extra $100?

What would you do with an extra $100? Brought to you by Dollar Shave Club and IatH, image of canadian moneyAs you guys know, I am frugal as hell (and, you know, broke) and am always looking for a way to save our family as much as I can. I recently came across the Dollar Shave Club and I think it is a great way for those of us who like to shave (Remember, it’s your body! You do what you like!) to save a some cash while keeping ourselves smooooooth.

So, the basic idea is this: You sign up with those sexy people, and you end up saving about $100 on razors just by using their service. So, what would you do with and extra $100? I’d like to say I would pay off some debt, cover some bills or add to savings (Savings! Ha!), but just for fun, I’ve got a few things that I have been eyeing:

  • Yarny Goodness (Because I am always looking for an excuse to fail at Cold Sheeping). I would specifically love to add more MadTosh to my stash. Isn’t it gorgeous? It is the best to knit with. Ever.Madeline Tosh Vintage yarnI would also love to try some more Sweet Georgia yarns. I’ve been following her blog for years and years, and remember when she first started out selling her yarn. I bought a skein then, and have refused to knit with it out of reverence.
  • I have a ModCloth wish list that could stretch all the way out to the Moon. I would looooove to grab a piece or two.
    modcloth1

    Aren’t these Keds amazing? I have been obsessed with floral footwear since last year and I live in flats, so these are perfect!

    I have been living in leggings and skinny jeans, so I am always trying to add to my collection of tunics and flowy tops. I love the details on this one, and I think it would be flattering with my curves

    I have been living in leggings and skinny jeans, so I am always trying to add to my collection of tunics and flowy tops. I love the details on this one, and I think it would be flattering with my curves

    Honestly, you want to know my style? Check out my ModCloth wish list. It is basically how I wish I could dress.

  • Etsy. I love supporting artists and owning beautiful items that you can’t find just anywhere. Here are some examples from my wishlist.Oversized slouchy Deathly Hallows long sleeved shirt Etsy found necklaces made from agate slices, sea glass coloured. earthenware light blue mug with Grocery tote bag that reads "Groceries & Shit" There is so much you can do with $100! I’d love to see your wish lists and ideas! Send them my way :)

Review: Ipsy’s January Glam Bag

Hi there! The freezing temperatures of January have had us snuggled up and cozy at home the last few weeks. I just received something that helped to cheer me up from the winter blahs – My very first Ipsy bag!

For those who aren’t familiar with Ipsy, it’s a monthly beauty subscription service. Every month you get a new bag of goodies, picked for you based on the theme of the month, your tastes and your routine. It is a fantastic way to try a variety of brands, products and tools for only $10 a month. As you all know, I am a makeup geek and love the opportunity to try new products every month.

January’s Glam Bag theme was Fresh Start, which is fitting.

Ipsy January Glam BagSo, firstly the bag that I was sent this month was cute. I don’t love the white side, but it will be a great little bag for keeping brushes in, or for travel.

Here is the look I came up with for this month’s products

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Here is everything I got:

Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush

This is a super cute brush. I really enjoy the pink tips. It’s not as big as my usual all-over shadow brush, but I think it would be great for when I’m traveling.

Be Good “Good Day, Day Moisturizer”

When I first made my ipsy account, I was pretty hardcore about no creams or face products because of how sensitive my skin can be. I eventually changed it, because I do really enjoy a good product when it works. I am very thankful for doing that because this moisturizer is amazing! It goes on so nicely. It moisturizes and softens without feeling greasy and it absorbs really well. I don’t feel dry or oily afterwards. In fact, it gives a really pleasant tingle. I love using it. I just wish it had a better scent. It kind of smells like seaweed to me.

Bellapierre Shimmer Powder in Celebrate.

I love eyeshadow. Like, a lot. I have an obscene collection. Golds are probably my favourite, but they are tricky to get right. Unfortunately, this colour just isn’t the gold that I enjoy. It’s more of a fancy orange or copper. The formula itself seems nice. It goes on smoothly and with great vibrancy.

Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eyeshadow in Ethereal

Because of my sensitive skin, I tend to avoid mineral makeups. They dry me out and trigger my eczema really quickly. Despite this, I decided to give this a try. I didn’t have any issues with irritation or dryness, so that was a huge bonus. Unfortunately, the colour is kind of meh. It’s a decent highlighting shade, so good for for brow bone area, but otherwise I’m just not taken with it.

Ipsy January Glam Bag Eyeshadow SwatchAs you can see, Ethereal just disappears on my skin.

Probelle Nail Polish in Into the Blue

Another makeup thing that I love is nail polish. I have a decent collection and always want more colours. I was really excited to find this in my bag. Sadly, it did not even remotely live up to my expectations. The formula is incredibly streaky and sheer. It took me three coats before I finally gave up (and I could still see through patches). The bottle claims that it is glossy, but it was more of a cream on me. The colour was sort of hazy and foggy which, in a blue, doesn’t do anything for me. I just don’t like it.

Probelle Into The Blue Nail PolishSo, overall I am super pleased with the value of this bag. I liked playing with everything I received. I can’t wait to see what we get next month! If you would like to sign up, click here. Ipsy also gives discount codes for the products featured in each bag so that you can buy a full sized version of the product at a discounted price.

Let me know if you like me talking about my ipsy bags, or if you’d like to see a video review or “unbagging”.

Note: This is not a sponsored post. If you sign up through my link, I do get “Ipsy Points”, but please feel free to sign up through the main ipsy page instead of my referral. I just really like talking about makeup.

Handmade Holiday

This year I decided to get an early head start on my holiday gifts. The idea was that I would be able to shop sales, budget better and have time for crafting. I think it really paid off. I managed to make several gifts for my loved ones and wanted to share how they turned out!

Embroidered Names for Friends

Embroidery is something that I stumbled into on my own several years ago and became absolutely smitten by it. I had a ton of floss, so I picked up some frames and linen and got to work. Most of these patterns are free hand with a couple of exceptions (like the foxes).

embroidery4 embroidery3 embroidery2 embroidery1

I have one more that has yet to be gifted, so I will share that later too :)

A Little Bit of Love Ornaments

I took an old sweater of my Mum’s that I loved (and she had loved), but I just couldn’t wear. I had never been able to donate it or give it away, so instead I decided to share a tiny bit of that memory and love and share it with family. I cut the sweater into pieces, and then using a cardboard template, cut hearts. I sewed the hearts together and Liam and I then stuffed the hearts.

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Castiel Tree Topper

I came across this amazing post on Lattes and Llamas, which features a knit Castiel Tree Topper. As a huge Supernatural fan, I was completely amused by it and then remembered how Cass is basically my SILs Husband, so I texted her a picture. She nearly died with a desperate need, so I knew I had to get to work. I only had a little bit of time left before our holiday celebration, so I hunted down a crochet Amigurumi version of Castiel (available here) and altered it. Please see my Rav page for all details on my changes. SIL informed me her bestie NEEDED one, so I made two. One ended up being a bit fatter than the other, but overall, I am very happy with how they turned out. Took me about a week to make both using scrap yarn.

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Castiel Tree Topper