Monday, March 25, 2013

Hello from Mexico!

Hey everyone!  I'm currently on vacation in the Mayan Rivera, Mexico with my boyfriend adn we are having a great time.  We arrived at midnight on Saturday night (our time, so it was actually 10pm Mexico time which enabled us to get a late-night dinner snack, which was good as we were so hungry) and have been soaking up the sun, drinking colourful drinks and just relaxing (or trying to relax; does anyone else have that difficulty of just 'shutting down'?  I know it always takes me a few days).

Things will be a little slow around here this week, but I'll be back to regular posting after Easter.  We do have free wi-fi here--what a treat!--but I don't want to spend hours logged on, if ya know what I mean.  I will have a full recap when I get back, plus more on Toronto Fashion Week and more.

Keep up with me on Instagram (I'm @acoest1984) while I'm away; talk soon!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Hello from Toronto Fashion Week!

Hey everyone! Sorry for the radio silence but the past couple days have been a whirlwind and I don't have wifi where I am (currently writing this post from my iPhone!).

In short, my bestie won a trip for us to World MasterCard Fashion Week in Toronto via Maybelline! They flew us here Wednesday night, put us up on a swanky hotel (The Thomspon) and sent us backstage at Fashion Week and to two shows. On top of that, gave her a cheque for $1000 to spend freely (we've had some great meals and done a bit of H&M shopping).

Yesterday, we got to the tents around 4:30 and were taken backstage. We had professional Redken hair stylists do our hair and Maybelline make-up artists for our faces. Backstage was craziness and so hectic. Models and people everywhere rushing around between shows! Once we were all ready, we were taken to the VIP lounge for a drink and professional photos then onto the shows! We saw the Soia&Kyo show and then the Rudsak show. Both amazing with beautiful outerwear. Tons of leather and fabrics mixed, fur lined hoods, vests and chunky boots. Needless to say, I'm looking forward to fall or at least incorporating some of this into my wardrobe now (via shopping my closet, mainly) before Spring hits (it's still snowing here).

Today we are going back to Fashion Week but don't know which shows we are seeing. We fly home tonight so are hoping to get some shopping in during the day today.

I'm Instagraming as I go and live-tweeting too so keep up with me there. Will have a full recap soon and we are vlogging this trip so ill have a video for you once I'm back from Mexico!

Have a great weekend!


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I'm going to Mexico!

Guess what you guys?!  I'm going to Mexico!  My boyfriend is taking me to the Mayan Riviera for my birthday and I could not be more excited (who gets a trip for their birthday!? What!).

I started packing the other night and put a pretty good dent into it. My suitcase is being filled with a lot of bright colours, wedges and bikinis (and cover-ups because I didn't pack enough of those for my trip to Punta Cana).

We are staying at the Aventura Spa Palace in the Mayan Riviera which is a five-star, adults-only resort and it looks beautiful.  I can't wait to relax, spend some QT time together and indulge in a carefree week. 

* Let's Chat sesh coming up so check back shortly!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Recent Eats

I haven't done a Recent Eats post in quite a while, but wanted to sort of 'check in' with what I've been putting in my body lately, and make sure I'm still on track, so to speak.  I like eating healthy, but I'm a huge sweets lover (which I try to keep in moderation... which sometimes doesn't work out so well!).  I mainly try to eat healthy during the day, so I can have a sweet treat in the evenings after dinner. 

These pictures were taken over the course of the last month I guess, and I did not photograph absolutely everything (almost impossible), but did get the good and the bad to show you a balance. 

Lastly, I mainly drink water, tea and milk (and the odd alcoholic beverage).  I never drink soft drinks and only drink coffee once a week on the weekend (I like the coffee they serve at our usual breakfast spot!).  In the past month I've been cutting back on my milk intake (despite it being my favourite drink) to see if it makes any difference.
1.  Perogies with saautéed onions & low fat sour cream (with paprika).
2.  Coconut cream pie.
3.  Chicken caesar salad.
4.  Oats with blackberries & a bit of maple syrup + peppermint tea.
5.  Burger & tomato-veg soup at a restaurant + water.
6.  Home-made egg wrap (one egg + three egg whites and some cheese) + steeped tea.
7.  Sweet potato, arugula, black bean and cilantro salad.  Topped with some low fat sour cream.
8.  Indian food at a restaurant + water.
9.  Arugula, one egg + three egg whites & avocado salad.

10.  Breakfast out.
11.  Afternoon snacks at work.
12.  Tuna wrap on whole wheat with cucumber, cilantro & hot sauce.
13.  Tomato-basil rice cake, three hard boiled eggs (only eat one yolk) and 1/3 cucumber.
14.  Mixed greens, one egg + three egg whites & avocado salad.
15.  Greek yogurt with blueberries & cinnamon.
16.  Five Guys burger + water.
17.  Afternoon snack: Kashi Toasted 7-Grain granola bar + peppermint tea.
18.  Grilled cheese made in the oven with no butter on flax bread & low sodium black-bean soup.
19.  Thai food take-out (it was Friday night!).
20.  Oats with blueberries & a tblspn. maple syrup + peppermint tea.
21.  Home-made beef madras.
22.  Steeped tea with agave (+ milk).
23.  Breakfast out.
24.  Evening & afternoon snack: strawberries & bananas.
25.  Oats with blackberries, blueberries & a bit of maple syrup + peppermint tea (I have been eating this every morning for a couple months now, I just love it & it's filling).
26.  Weekend breakfast: Fried egg sandwich on flax bread at home.
27.  Chicken and veg stir fry on quinoa.
28.  Coconut cocoa oatmeal bites (omg, these are amazing and relatively healthy considering you're eating a sweet treat).
29.  Oats with blackberries & a bit of maple syrup + water.
30.  Scallops, shrimp & roasted red peppers on a spinach fettucini (my birthday dinner!).
31.  Gnocchi (so delicious but when this was put down in front of me at the restaurant, I almost blurted out, 'Well, that looks fattening!'  Um.  It was.  And it was heavenly).
32.  Morning and afternoon snacks at work.
33.  Spinach, feta, quinoa & egg (one egg + 2 egg whites) salad with a maple balsamic dressing.
34.  Left over beef madras but over quinoa this time & added baby carrots.
35.  Birthday "cake" (pecan pie).
36.  Oats with blueberries & a bit of maple syrup + peppermint tea.


Monday, March 18, 2013

A Birthday Poem from My Bestie

Happy birthday to my friend, the bestest one of all,

My partner in crime, my gym buddy and co-shopper at the mall.

We work together, play together and travel near and far,

We go out together, stay in together and park car beside car.

It’s your day, so celebrate and don’t forget the cake,

But wait, not cake, it’s pie you love, so eat it ‘til your tummy aches!

You turn twenty-nine today, but you’re looking young and hot,

You got the curves and you’re toned to boot, so shake what you have got!

This year that’s passed has been a blast with so many great times,

Some great pool parties, girl’s nights out and surpassing Calypso lines.

Off to Vegas for IHeartRadio and then Dominican for some sun,

Not to mention all the gym work and so many sweaty runs.

Being a part of your Vlogger win was such a big highlight too,

You had that thing in the bag, “you are winning” is what I told you.

Now 6 months later, and a dozen videos in, you are still a star,

You have to start somewhere, as they say, but I know you’re going far!

We have our inside jokes and talk in a language no one speaks,

We laugh at silly things and I know people think we’re geeks!

Now let’s celebrate your special day, thanks for being a great friend,

Happy 29th Birthday Amanda, this poem has now reached it’s end.

- Sarah


Weekend Recap: iPhone Snaps (Birthday Edition!)

This past weekend was what I will dub my birthday weekend, as it was not just Friday, but seemed to extend the entire weekend and I'm not complaining.  It was a wonderful weekend and while I feel considering that these Weekend Snaps are kind of bare, it's mainly because I was filming a birthday vlog and my video camera was taking more of a priority over my iPhone.  Here are some shots from a great weekend...

On Friday night, my boyfriend made an amazing spinach pasta dish with fresh scallops and shrimp.  We had a butternut squash soup to start and the most amazing (organic) red wine.

 For dessert, he surprised me with pecan pie (a fave!).

 On Saturday morning, I met with my girl friend for brunch.  I completely forgot to take a picture of my breakfast as I vlogged it instead.  Afterwards, I went shopping on my own and after debating for a couple hours, decided to go back and pick up this denim vest I put on hold.  I'm definitely stepping outside my comfort zone on this one, but it's for the greater good.

I did really well with my shopping and am excited to show you what I picked up for Spring in my next vlogs.  See all PDO Fashion Vlogger Vlogs HERE.

On Saturday night, my girlfriends took me out for dinner for my birthday.  We started at one spot, had a drink, decided we didn't want to stay for dinner, and went across the street to another restaurant and had an amazing feast.  I have been saving this dress for the 'perfect occassion', so my birthday took the cake (pun intended, ha).
Outfit deets:  Sugar Lips dress c/o, Sirens leggings, F21 booties & Auslini bangle.

 Complimentary after dinner flaming Sambuca shots.

 A beautiful wrap job by a friend.

My new Joe Fresh bangle (top) from my sister.

Sunday morning brunch with the man.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Do or Don't: Fringe Bikini Tops

I saw some fringe bikinis while shopping a few weeks ago and was instantly drawn to them... and not sure why.  There is just something about them that I'm really feeling so I might have to scoop one up.  And since I'm going to Mexico, better sooner than later!

Would you wear this?


Friday, March 15, 2013


Today I turn 29 and it is a little surreal thinking I'm in the last year of my twenties.  ReallyThe last year in my twenties?  I don't feel old enough to be here... and somehow I do. 

I also feel there is this silent obligation to make this the best year ever, being as it's the last one in my twenties (despite knowing I should and will have many great years to come in my thirties, and forties, and fifties, and so on, I hope).

This year I will be celebrating tonight with my boyfriend, tomorrow with a girl friend for brunch, Saturday night with a few girlfriends for dinner, and Sunday with my Grandparents who have kindly invited me for dinner at their senior's residence.  My family threw me a surprise birthday dinner back in February as my parents would be away on the actual day, complete with my best friend and my favourite meal: a full turkey dinner (and a sweet home-made cake by my mom)!

Here is a look back at the past few birthdays:
* 26: Birthday dinner.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Winter Evening Fun

Tonight my girlfriends and I got together for some winter evening fun: dinner and some good ol' girl chat.  We all brought something (chicken, salad, pie, wine).  A pretty great way to spend my last evening as a 28 year old, if I do say so myself.  Our host even made my favourite kind of pie as a surprise which just topped the night off.  Thanks for such a great night, ladies.


This is Me

Outfit deets:
* Old Navy jacket (old) which you've seen with black skinnies (love this post), during the fall with beautiful leaves and cool tights, with a leopard skirt in the rain and with a pretty olive green dress.
* Zara sweater which you've seen in this post about confidence, and on the weekend (also have the black on and wore it that same weekend as well), and in my original haul video.
* Smart Set cami (which I own in almost every colour of the rainbow and wear constantly).
* Joe Fresh skirt which was originally a t-shirt that I turned into a skirt using THIS method.  Also seen with olive green & a belt I love (and haven't worn in forever).
* Accessories:  Ardène pashmina, Alfred Sung sunglasses, H&M large bangle, Swarovski bangle & Joe Fresh necklace.

Thanks for all the sweet comments you guys leave on a semi-daily basis.  It's so nice to share parts of my life with you all, and hearing from you makes it even better.  I also love how interactive we're getting in the Let's Chat posts every Wednesday, it's so interesting hearing what you guys think and how you react to various things.

Additionally, I know we don't all share the same opinions, but that's what can also be great, so long as we respect others opinions and can share and learn.  What I write is how I feel, not how you have to feel or  like, but if we can learn something from each other, at the very least, that's a great bonus!

Tonight I'm getting together with three girlfriends for a semi-impromptu girls' dinner.  We are all bringing something, and I was in charge of the side so I put together a quinoa salad, based loosely on this recipe I randomly found online.  I tried some for dinner last night and it turned out great. 

I'm on somewhat of a quinoa quick, but have been for a while.  It's such a great substitute for rice and is a great source of protein as well as carbohydrate.  It's filling and healthy and all the right things.  It's pretty bland, but you can spice it up with spices or sauces (which can take it from being healthy, to less than healthy, but...) or just eat it on it's own.  I personally don't mind the taste, and like it on it's own.  My favourite is as a plain side with chicken and veggies for dinner.  You can also mix it into salads, breakfast and I've even heard of it being used in desserts!  Google it & jump on the band wagon.


Do or Don't: Harem Pants

I love the look of these Harem pants but not really sure I could pull them off.  Since I like to show off my legs, these wouldn't really do them justice... but they are just so cool looking and fun I can't help but want a pair!

Would you rock these?

(Left:  Forever 21  |  Right:  Asos)


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

What do you wear to bed?

After various discussions with girl friends, I've come to the conclusion that what people wear to bed is almost always a strongly chosen choice, and often, the other options are not even options.  People like to wear to bed what they like to wear to bed.  Doing something different is uncomfortable and not liked.

For me, I used to be a big fan of boy shorts and a tank top, just a few years ago.  Since then, I've been slowly losing my clothes, down to undies, and now my preference is to sleep naked (gasp!).  Part of me just feels the most comfortable like this, but another part of me feels, 'Why dirty more clothes than I have to?'.  That said, I love lingerie, but typically, not when I'm alone.

What about you? Are you strongly set in what you wear to bed?


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Fashion Vlogger Video #11: A Kiss Printed Jacket DIY

For my eleventh video as the Place d'Orleans Fashion Vlogger, I'm sharing my DIY kiss-printed jacket.  Inspired by Erin Fetherston's Spring 2013 collection & LoveMaegan's take on it, I decided to give it a whirl and I love the results!  
A fresh look for Spring that I can't wait to rock.  The best part?  It's no sew and anyone can do it.  Peep the vid to get in on the kissing action.
Stay tuned for more videos (specifically on the Place d'Orleans FB page). 
Other videos:
* Fall Fashion (video #1)
* Wardrobe Classics (video #2)
* Bundling Up for Winter (video #3)
* How-to Style a Sequin Skirt (video #4)
* What to Wear for New Years Eve (video #5)
* New Year, New You! (video #6)
* Accessories & a Hair Tutorial (video #7)

Monday, March 11, 2013

In My Cart

Since purchasing my car, I'm on a much tighter budget (hello car payments) so instead of clicking purchase on the above, these are a few items currently sitting in my cart.


Forever 21

Also would love to DIY a top in the back like this one.


Weekend Recap: iPhone Snaps

 Friday night take-out: thai (I can't recall what these are called, but they were amazing).

 Rockin' my new D-tox spike bangle (with my older, gifted, Swarovski bangle).

Saturday afternoon casual.
Outfit deets:  thrifted jacket, H&M tee, Zara pants, Aldo purse, Ardène pashmina, Gucci shades & hi-top wedges.

Since running out of real maple syrup, I've been adding Agave Nectar to my oatmeal in the mornings (I had kind of forgotten I had this bottle).  On Saturday moning when I opened my tea and it wasn't quite sweet enough, I found another use for it.

 Saturday morning breakfast:  egg sandwich (one egg, two whites) on flax seed bread.

 Saturday evening casual (added a headband, boots & zipper snood).

 Saturday night dinner: chicken stir fry with quinoa.

 Sunday brunch.

On Sunday, due to Daylight Savings, by the time I got going, it was almost late afternoon.  I ran some errands, shared my newest DIY, got a spray tan and cooked dinner for the man.  I love lighting candles, espcially when I have people over.  Gives such a nice ambiance and you can't beat the smell.

This sweatshirt gets a ton of love.

Sunday night dinner: chicken tandoori with quinoa & veg.

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