TiLT 29.9.2011

I have a lot to be thankful for this week.

Waking up next to my love, every single day. Most of our relationship has been long-distance, so I'm used to sleeping alone. Being with him is beyond-words-incredible.

Correspondence courses. I'm in Poinciana, Florida, and working on a course through University of Toronto. How cool is that?!

Disney World. Kamen's mom took us a couple of days ago + it was such fun!

Parents who care. My mom and dad have both been emailing me, asking how I am. I feel loved, knowing they're thinking of me, especially while I'm away.

Having fun with American lingo. "Candy bar". "Swimsuit". "Restroom". As a linguaphile, I love picking these out of conversation and trying them for myself (but I still say "chocolate bar" instead of "candy bar"!).

Big or small, what made you smile this week?


Things I Learned About Myself in the Big Apple

NYC as seen from the Staten Island Ferry. Photo by Rebecca Gorenkoff, Etched In Tin.

During my just-shy-of-3-days in NYC last week, I had time for lots of introspection + self-exploration. Here's what I found:

1 I'm much better with directions than I thought. While it's true that I get lost in my own city of Toronto, where I've spent all my life, I'm able to figure out which bus to take, which way Avenues versus streets go and how to ask for directions if (read: when) I need them. This comes in handy all the time!

2 I love taking pictures. I've known this for a long time, but it became more apparent than ever during my trip. I gleefully snapped photos of buildings in The Bronx, artifacts in The Museum of Sex, the Statue of Liberty... Even a few of pretzels. Photography is a great way to express one's self while keeping track of time and memories, so you'll see lots more photos (by me) on Etched In Tin.

3 I think I now understand how new Torontonians feel when they see the C. N. Tower. Seeing the Statue of Liberty up close is surreal. She's so much smaller than literature leads one to believe, yet she's larger than life. The moment you witness a landmark you've heard about all your life but never actually seen is magical.

4 I'm more capable of interacting with strangers than I thought. This is a revelation! I'm quite shy by nature, so learning that I can hold a conversation with ease was quite a confidence boost.

Do you find that travelling offers you learning experiences? When's the last time you learned something about yourself?

I Stopped Reading "Health" Magazines + You Should Too!

April Flores for Bizarre Magazine

I used to pore over women's health magazines, certain that reading them would inspire me to be healthier. Recently, though, I learned that so-called health magazines aren't so good for us afterall: They perpetuate negative body image ideals and insist that a woman will never be good enough until she's thin, inspiring crash diets and self-loathing.

Now, I do indulge in magazines (what girl doesn't?) but I'm far more discerning than I used to be. In place of reaching for Self or Shape, I explore the Health at Every Size community online or read feminist publications like Bitch and Bust. Better quality material and it makes me feel good about myself. I love fashion magazines too, but take their "health" tips with a grain of salt.

Rather than reading about ways to be skinny, I actively work at being healthy by going for walks, preparing nutritious snacks or practicing yoga.

I recognize that skinny is not necessarily healthy and healthy is not necessarily skinny, just like fat is not necessarily unhealthy and unhealthy is not necessarily fat.

I acknowledge that my body type (voluptuous, full-figured) was highly sought-after throughout history-- a larger figure meant a woman was well-off enough to eat lavishly and her curves were considered beautiful. In the past 60 years or so, slender has been considered most attractive. Society's tastes change in cycles. One day curvy will be in again and thin will be out. We just have to ignore trends and embrace the body we have.

Lastly, I remind myself over and over again that I am beautiful and I deserve to be healthy-- emotionally and physically.

And so do you.

Facebook, Fruit Eggrolls + Vintage Vibrators: Confetti 9.9.2011

TGIF! Enjoy this week's Confetti.

The Seven Most Ridiculously Amazing Things About Beyonce.I love how intelligent she comes across as when she speaks. Not to mention how glam she is! Fierce.

These fruit eggrolls look delicious.

Amanda Palmer fans, you probably already know, but... There's an Evelyn Evelyn graphic novel coming out soon! Check out this MTV Geek interview with Amanda Fucking Palmer.

Hey, fatshionistas! Domino Dollhouse has a new divine collection of dresses out.

If you're a fan of Facebook you'll 'like' this one... Facebook Like Button Cupcake.

Check out this vintage vibrator advertisement from a 1960s lingerie catalogue (via Dita Von Teese)!

Have a great weekend!

TiLT 8.9.2011

I know Things I Love Thursday is usually about little things that make us happy, but this week I also have some bigger thrills to divulge!

Firstly, yesterday was mine and Kamen's anniversary!! I am grateful beyond words to have such an incredible sweetheart + all I can ask is for many, many more years with him. Happy anniversary, beloved.

Number two? This week a lot of Canadian students went back to school. And I'm not one of them!! I love learning, as is evident in the multitude of topics I research + write about, but I thrive in less-structured environments than schools tend to be. So I'm doing a writing program by correspondence through University of Toronto, and that makes me very happy.

Now, on to the little things!

♥<3 Mad Men marathons with my mom.

♥<3 Listening to the same album multiple times in a row (in a single day!!) And never tiring of it.

♥<3 Vanilla bean ice cream.

What made you smile this week?
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