1575 West 6th Avenue
Vancouver, BC Canada V6J 1R1
Saturday: 10:00 – 5:00
Sunday: 11:00 – 4:00
for Christmas crafts. You know it and I know it. As you get older you are given gifts that you simply don’t need (which means they end up stuffed underneath the bed, donated, rewrapped, or left on your neighbours doorstep with a note that says, “love santa”) Unless they are gift cards to your favourite shops (ask me for my ideas), monetary (to pay for those guitar, tap, ballet, art classes, even bills) or a generous donation in your name to your favourite charity. All in all, I really don’t need anything. Save your pennies and help someone who could enjoy a cup of tea, a bowl of soup or a long overdue phone call. As a young kid I would always give the gift of craft making. And as a young woman, well it looks like its gonna be that way this year too. Amy Sedaris put it best in her book, Simple Times: Crafts For Poor People. Yes I own this book. I bought it the minute it came out. I have a serious girl crush on this brilliant woman and somehow I can relate. Not because of my brilliance (or lack thereof) but because of her unique charm, bold characters and weirdness. I love her! So…if you feel compelled to make crafts this year take a peek at her book. Otherwise here are a few of my top suggestion:
– mason jars filled with sand and shells (a Hawaiian adventure)
– decoupaged wine bottles with a candle of course (include matches. Go the extra step)
– sock puppets (everyone loves mismatched socks with buttons on them)
– reindeer families made from sticks. Use cranberries for oversized noses (This will get em every time!)
Q-tip men (perfect for the nativity scene)
Enjoy! Get creative! Happy shopping (independent/local of course)
My first thought when I woke up this morning was, “I don’t want to get out of bed”. The sound of the rain was my alarm clock, the grey gloom is my cityscape until the first image I looked at on my compu pu was simple tranquility. Need I say more on this dreary Monday morning? Simple perfection, perfectly blue. I would like to be there. In a heartbeat I would. Soon I will.
“For relaxing times, make it Suntory time”
Bill Murray always puts a smile on my face (not everyone can) He is by far one of my all time favourite actor/comedians whose performances are always brilliantly executed. If you haven’t scene Lost In Translation you should. Even if it’s for the hilarious scene of him as famous actor, Bob Harris struggling to make a “Suntory” whiskey commercial in Japan. It’s enough to win my heart. It’s enough to make me want to pour a glass of Suntory. On the beach. With Bill Murray. This is my perfect monday morning. CS XX
otaduy . whiskey
Well my lovely peeps, the chill is back and so is the rain. Often distracted by puddles and broken umbrellas, trying to keep my head clear is usually a challenge. Lets face it, my mind is pretty imaginative and most of the time I dream of tropical islands, skinny dipping, dancing everywhere, magical places, lavender bubble baths, artistic adventures and frolicking…… on the beach. I like to wrap myself in my house coat, curl up in my cozy bed and convert it into my home office. Most things don’t seem clear. Usually they aren’t . But sometimes they are right in front of your eyes. No need to play peek a boo or hide behind those fears. You may want to play with what you have and splash around a bit. Tears may stream, emotions rise, you might just need some extra special lovin. You miss certain people, yummy smells, change isn’t as easy as picking up a penny. They say chicken soup is good for the soul but so is leaping in the air and landing on your feet with a bit of a stumble. Putting your foot in your mouth is often a good thing. It makes you real. It stirs the heart part. Messages are sent, wires are crossed. But if you’re smart enough to see the everything in between, the black and white is easier to be seen. Let’s face it, sometimes the grey areas are all you need on a rainy day. CS xx
rainy kisses . romantic escapes . flying high . peek a boo . hibernate . lady thoughts .
I swear, it seems like every 5 years I feel a growth spurt. No, not in my boobs but in my heart. Mentally. I feel the need for growth and change. I’ve been feeling it for a couple of months now. Maybe it’s a part of getting older. Possibly, the turn of the season. Each year I have a better sense of what I want. What I’d rather focus my time on. Who I want to spend hours with. Where I want to go. When I want to put my foot down. Why I need to let the things that weigh me down be set free. Sometimes I don’t know where to be. Most of the time I can never pin point what it is. I know it’s heart + mind + gut. Confused usually. I’m never really sure . Grown up pants. I like to choose my own adventure. trust it . I don’t know about you but Fall is the start of something new.
crisp air . sun on my face . warm hugs . a big kiss . leaves a changing . new prospects . learn Italian (for the 3rd time) . heavy knits . boots and jeans . running in the wind . crimson lips . new relationships . scary adventures . 8 months . do something new . kiss a crush . film . family chats . black and white . let it all go . enjoy the game . fall like a leaf . take my time . weird is cool . birthday time . fly like a bird . chase something . sew a button . bangs . 60 seconds of fun . grandma sweaters . something special . quit something you don’t like . los angeles . new york city . i’m coming to play . piano . sing a song . stage . learn guitar . drive . 3 chords . yes . do it . head stand . kale . americano . cuddles . opera . black . pumpkins . vampire teeth . i miss u . hurdles . vanilla candles . paint . doodle . dare . plan . cheeky monkey . apple pie a la mode . crazy . song bird . clogs & socks . lucy . inspiration . tattoo . vogue . i’m just being me .
peek a boo . unexpected change . french inspired . girl crush . teepee for 2 . rachel comey obsessed . doodle heart
I had a wonderful conversation with someone this week which included our love for anything odd. For as long as I can remember I have not been a fan of even numbers, perfect hair, perfectly constructed outfits or even stale personalities. I’ve always been attracted to the things that were a bit off, a little uneven, pinches of quirk and cracked perfection. I tend to bring a lot of this into my work and play. With anything perfect there is always that flaw. I believe this is the reason for my love of flawed characters. But then again, we are all pretty much flawed and hide behind our masks. I tend to think abstractly and create abstractly. Lately I’ve been locking myself in my room, blasting music and painting. It’s a release to set your mind free from the “to do’s” and let it go. It’s amazing how a piece of music will guide your brush, inspire your colour and not judge how it looks. Most of the time, my left brain has an idea of how I want to depict something but my right brain takes over and the unexpected is there. I love texture and colour…maybe even a bit of sparkle too. This is just how I roll. – CS xx
“Clear thinking at the wrong moment can stifle creativity.” – Karl Lagerfeld
In A Far Away Land” there was as a little girl who was obsessed with anything that began with, “Once Upon A Time In A Far Away Land…” Who wasn’t? And where is this land they speak of? Or is it just in our imagination? I remember my dad would read fairy tales to me before bed time. And of course every Disney movie that came to the big screen had to be watched with pop and popcorn. They filled my vast imagination with thoughts of magical fairy godmothers, magic dust, sparkles, enchanted forests, prince charming’s, dwarves, kisses, long braided hair and the list goes on and on. Some may dream of fairytale endings when there’s a void. They put us in our happy place to fill our heart, mind and soul. As I grew older I read the Brothers Grimm version and as much as I didn’t want to believe these cracked fairy tales, they too had a sense of reality with the gruesome twists that life may throw. As we grow, we have a better understanding of the lessons that are taught, the symbolism exposed and the subliminal messages you even see in your favourite Disney movie (yes, they are there if you look really hard). We have more of an awareness of ourselves too. You have to just take both with a grain of salt and know that sometimes fairy tales are just fairy tales and reality is where you’re at right now. Although kissing a frog would be interesting. This takes me to those magical pair of heels that you’ve encountered. You stand there holding them, smelling them, touching them. You glide your hand down that marvellous heel. You know that heel is dangerous. As a matter of fact its going to kill your feet and your knees. You know that after 5 minutes of walking in them, toes pushed against the front, forced arches rising, you will not turn into a pumpkin but rather the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Believe me, I’ve been there and done that. And I still do that because honestly those heels are just too dynamite not to wear. They are sexy. They make your legs look like a model’s body. Not a model’s leg, her entire body. Yikes! You are taller than you have every dreamed you could be. You try them on and of course your instincts were right. You squeal, you cringe, you blush with frustration as you force your foot in that heel. “God dammit! Get in! Get in! Don’t embarrass me!!”. After exhaling and smiling confidently, you thank the perturbed man who has seen you stroking them for the past month. You politely say, “Thank you sir, but it looks like I’m going to have to think about them…. until next Monday…. when I get paid “. NOT. You will never step foot near those heels again, especially if hawk eye is watching your every step. They just weren’t a perfect fit. You frown. Think Cinderella – the many women at the ball who squeezed their foot in that glass slipper trying to appease the likes of the prince. But knowingly enough, they too were not a perfect fit. Your frown slowly rises, Wait a second. You see another pair of heels (Note to self: You are looking at way too many shoes lately). They may not look like a strippers foot like the last ones. Yes you can say that now because they didn’t fit and you didn’t buy them. But the girl who buys them could be mistaken for a stripper! I’m just saying. But we aren’t judging here cause we’re in my fairytale. Back to these heels. Damn, they are truly gorgeous and hey you got some time. Time is the essence. As a matter of fact you don’t wear a watch and your cell phone died. So there isn’t even a clock around. You try them on for shi*s and giggles. Oh my. Why they are a perfect fit. Your legs may not look like a models entire body but they look like your body. Your legs. Your feet and knees aren’t screaming at you. And dang you are sexy! SOLD!!!! “I’ll use Visa, debit and cash please”. Like I said, I get paid next Monday. I’ll tell ya, you just can’t fake a comfortable shoe. But for a few seconds you can always dream it. Lesson learned once again – CS xx
I started dancing when I was 4 years old. Tap and Ballet were my first and then Jazz. My love for dancing has really enabled me to rock out on any dance floor or living room. Interpretive dances are a must – at a party, at a cottage, in the comfort of your own home (or others). My body does things. As a matter of fact, breaking into creative dance moves in a store, down an aisle, on a stage (especially with a banana) or in the street is my kinda my thing. Weather its dancing to “Saturday Night Fever” or Classical Music I let the music take me where no man has gone before. Er-
When I was 6 years old my ballet teacher, **Rita (** Rita wasn’t her real name) told my mother that I would never be a ballerina. To put it gently (as I later cried and still hold it with me till this day) I didn’t have the proper legs ala turn out. Wow. That was a smack in the face. Especially when you, the little girl with probably the biggest feet in the class had a dream. I absolutely adored ballet and was secretly jealous of those girls who moved so flawlessly on the stage and excelled in the advanced program. Desperately trying to prove her wrong I stuck it out until I was 16, just when I was about to go on point shoes. I absolutely loved point. But I knew that I wouldn’t advance further. You’re probably thinking, “Christina, No girlfriend! You should have stuck with it. Seriously, dreams do come true. You are the ballerina that could! You could have been a ballet star! YOU could have been Natalie Portman in The Black Swan”!!!!!!! Or something like that. But your gut knows best and your body knows it even more. I stopped out of insecurity. Why put myself through the torture of trying to be someone I wasn’t? You can’t fit a square in a circle. Or can you? Instead I’ll have you know I was Vice President of Student Council that year which occupied my time. You’re probably thinking, “Wow Christina you are a jack of all trades”. Yes my friends, I am. Skipping math class to “do council work” was a priority. And stepping out of science class to “take care of an important matter” (free Oh Henry Bars were coming in by the case for the Much Music dance party that night) I needed to be there for my peers. So instead I did what any responsible councilman would do, I decided to prioritize. I chose the only dance class I had time for and made time for. This was Tap. So that little girl who clung to the back row in ballet class, self-conscious of legs and feet, who always looked ahead to the “favoured” girls in the front row returned her point shoes. Another girl with a ballet dream would scoop them up. And plus I was really important that year in high school, so…. Alright. The truth: I knew my dream (and there are lots) to be a ballerina would not come true. I gave up. Something I do not like doing. Ever. Was it my big feet that I was self-conscious of? Maybe it was a turnout. My feet aren’t perfectly arched either. They are, as the boys would tease me in grade school, “flat as a board”. Well guess what boys! My feet grew faster than my boobs. So take that. You know what they say about a gal with big feet?
ME: I dunno.
I have size 8 flippers, sometimes they range to a 9.5 (insanity). For a 5’4 gals with a tiny frame that is just uncalled for! I constantly trip UP stairs, on the sidewalk and religiously stub my toes on furniture. My guy won’t touch my feet. As a matter of fact he cringes at them. Saying things like, “look at those”, “get them away from me” or even, “go get orthotics, we have coverage!!!”. I would say this is verbal abuse. I have feelings too you know. I think I may be a hobbit. Come to think of it, If Bilbo Baggins had a sister I would be she. I am a klutz. To say I have grace, well others would argue I walk like an elephant. That’s when I knew my instincts were right about sticking with tap. I never felt insecure about my foot size, nor my form. And there was a rhythm in my feet. It’s like they would come alive! Yeah, that’s right. I was fast. There was nothing more joyous than the banging sensation of my feet stomping to the ground. I tapped to the rhythm of the music and challenged myself within the beats. I love to tap. Not to mention, I was the strongest out of all three. Maybe my natural talent for stomping really did come in handy. It excited me in a way that gave me the freedom to move my body loosely while staying in control of my feet. I am like a bag of microwave popcorn ready to explode all over the microwave when I tap. I didn’t even have to wear a bun. Instead, I sported a headband. All this and I looked cool at the same time. Yes I always think I’m cool when I tap. Like when I played soccer as a kid we had to take pictures and I thought I was cool by pushing my tongue against my bottom lip (try it. You’ll feel cool). Don’t ask me why but I have proof in the pictures. I even had the honour of tapping with Gregory Hines in Theatre School. Yep! I’m gloating and I name dropped. You will have to just deal with it. Jazz on the other hand well, I am definitely a white girl. Watching me do Hip Hop will cheer anyone up when they are feeling blue. It’s a comedy show in itself. I still got my tappers and have come to terms with my 87-year-old looking feet. Correction – My 87-year-old grandfather has prettier feet than mine. I have no idea where these came from. I’ve also come to terms with the fact that this shy timid little ballerina girl (who secretly glides across the bedroom floor to “Swan Lake” in a Swan costume (I exaggerated the part of the costume) has her ballet slippers tucked underneath her bed. I may have a tiny bunion or two. And I may not be so graceful. But I got rhythm and I got music….Who could ask for anything more?
Ballet classes please? – CS xx
No one ever told me I could’t sport a tutu and heels.
Over the long weekend I had the pleasure of packing it up and staying at a cabin in Washington state. It was awesome. It’s always amazing when you forget about your daily “TO DO’S” (which I am the first one to admit I am awful at). While enjoying a ton o laughs I slathered on the suntan lotion, swam in the lake, read a few magazines, did an interpretive dance to MJ’s “Thriller” and strolled through the tiny quaint town of Edison. Here, antique shops and small businesses are by far lucky gems scattered throughout this town. Speaking of lucky, I stumbled across The Lucky Dumpster. Like a kid in a candy store or simply in Sicoli fashion I touched, smelled, picked up, sat on, shook, tapped, and darted my eyes around every which way until I found what I was looking for. I could have bought everything (if I had a VISA) but of course had to be realistic. Not everything was gong to fit in the ol Hyundai.
This treasure chest of goodies is owned and operated by James Reisen and Jessica Bonin, a quirky and very talented couple (they are in the band called, The Daffodils) who sell original and moderately priced artwork. And if you are looking for restored work this is the place! The Lucky Dumpster is really a jewel. I was inspired and found a few vintage finds as well as recycled art items. It is one of those stores where every inch is packed with a unique find. James and Jessica are absolutely wonderful and their store is full of charm and in the words of Mark Wahlberg, “Good vibrations”. I was on the hunt for an antique vanity and was ecstatic to find a few pieces that allowed me to build it on my own. D.I.Y if you will. I literally created a vintage beauty salon in my home office. So if you visit this quirky town of Edison filled with coffee shops, bakery’s, art gallery’s, go and support The Lucky Dumpster. Even if it’s for a cheery chat. – CS xx
For those who know me, I can fall asleep anywhere. This was after my interpretive “Thriller” dance.