A Charming Day in Niagara-on-the-Lake

It is my absolute opinion that Niagara-on-the-Lake is one of the dreamiest places in Ontario. I adore this little town. Situated in Niagara, just a bit away from Niagara Falls, it’s like stepping back in time into a quaint 19th century town - with all the boutiques and cafes your little heart could ever desire. I wish I could spend every day walking along these beautiful streets, with their little shutters and beautiful brick buildings.

My boyfriend and I recently had a week-off from uni for Reading Week, so we decided to take a day trip out to Niagara-on-the-Lake to stroll around. Fortunately, despite it being the dead of winter in Canada, the sun came out, the weather was tolerable, and we had a positively beautiful day! Since it’s one of the most photogenic places I’ve ever seen, I took a ton of pictures and thought I’d share them all on the blog today!

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Since we only explored Queen Street, rather than visiting some of the historic areas throughout the town, we spent our day primarily popping in and out of the little shops that dot the street. There are a ton of small businesses along the road which I’ve come to appreciate even more since moving to a very small town that is quite reliant on their local shops.

One of the shops that is not a local business, however, is the Cows Creamery, which is an ice cream shop. It’s actually a chain of parlours from Prince Edward Island that has somehow made it out to Niagara-on-the-Lake (and apparently Beijing!). I love the ice cream there however it was far too cold for a scoop so instead we decided to check out their merchandise. It’s all hilariously cute, as most of it is cow-related pop culture puns. It sounds hideously tacky, but I swear it’s funny!! They actually had a line of really nice crewnecks that were very subtle and had the logo on it, so I bought a nice large grey sweater that I currently am living in lol.

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Every time I visit Queen St, I’m in complete awe of this building. The Old Court House is from the mid-19th century and it’s a wonderfully historic addition to the main street. I adore.

Walking down the streets, taking in all the sights, was really the most fun ever. It was also really lovely to just spend a day alone with my boyfriend, chatting and enjoying the sun. The road of Queen St isn’t very busy, so there aren’t so many cars along the road which is nice. They also have horse-drawn carriages that come down the road quite often, which is so beautiful. I love horses so much and every time they pass, I make my boyfriend stop in the middle of the sidewalk to watch!

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It is simply not a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake unless I visit Just Christmas. In fact, the main reason we went down there was to go to Just Christmas. Established in 1985, it’s known as Canada’s oldest year-long Christmas emporium. This store is M A S S I V E. It seems like it goes on forever, up and down stairs, around corners, in little loft areas. For a Christmas fanatic like myself, it’s a dream.

It’s also a crucial part of my Christmas traditions! My whole family, including my grandma, late grandpa, and my boyfriend, all have red ornament balls personalized with our names. It’s something that’s been a tradition for us since before I was even alive I believe. But this past Christmas, we realized we didn’t have one for my pup (yes, we’re that crazy dog family) so my boyfriend and I decided to go out and get one for her.

We also bought a very cute marshmallow snowman ornament for our mini bedroom tree and a Jon Snow ornament for our main tree because he’s a cutie and it was only $3 lol.

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I’ve always heard about the Prince of Wales Hotel and I’ve seen it from afar before, but for whatever reason, I’d never gone to see it up close. So this time, I insisted we went down that road and I’m so glad we did! The hotel was established in 1864 under a different name, being renamed the Prince of Wales after the Duke and Duchess of York (later King George V and Queen Mary) came to visit in 1901. It’s positively huge and beautiful. My little history-loving heart couldn’t take all the historic importance and the 19th century architecture. As we explored the exterior (I don’t think we even have enough money to open the front door), I just kept saying “oh my GOD” really loudly and dramatically, which got me a lot of interesting looks from very posh elderly patrons of the hotel and accompanying restaurant.

Also, it’s apparently extremely haunted. There’s a whole story about an American soldier going into a wooden house which stood in the Prince of Wales Hotel’s spot during the War of 1812 and he mistook a woman looking out the window for an enemy British soldier, piercing her with the end of his bayonet. Not a great time. There’s even a Trip Advisor review titled “Great. But totally haunted.” I won’t be staying there any time soon.

That being said, if you’re really into ghosts, Niagara-on-the-Lake is the place for you. Being such an old town, and the site of many War of 1812 moments, it’s apparently generally haunted. They even do ghost tours which I might gather the nerve to do one day, though I vow not to do the ghost tour of my own town lol.

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Interesting fact: this beautiful clock tower in the middle of Queen St is actually a cenotaph for those who were killed during World War I.

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Near the end of our trip, I was absolutely starving so my boyfriend lured me into the Nina Gelateria & Pastry Shop. I’d been there before for gelato before years ago, but had never had anything from the cafe menu. Immediately after I saw the crepes, I was hooked. My boyfriend, shockingly, had never had a crepe before!! Luckily I fixed that haha. I ordered us a Chocolate Hazelnut Banana crepe, which is essentially nutella and sliced banana pieces. It was heavenly! Massive, too. If you happen to come to Nina’s someday, keep in mind that these crepes are very easily sharable. But very, very delicious.

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Finally, we reached the end of our trip (sad). I should mention that parking at Niagara-on-the-Lake is… interesting. It’s primarily street parking, meaning the dreaded parallel parking aka I made my boyfriend drive and park haha. I think there’s some parking behind the shops, in little parking lots but I can’t be certain where there are or if they even exist. Anyway, for parking on the street, you have to pay a parking meter. It’s $3 an hour. We stayed an hour and a half, so we had to pay $6 for two hours. But it wouldn’t take our credit cards! We tried credit cards, debit cards, and nothing. Which meant we had to use coins which we did not have, so we had to pop into a shop to break a twenty. It took a longgg time. Keep that in mind!

We actually parked right in front of Starbucks, which was fabulous as it was easy for me to grab my beloved caramel macchiato before hoping in the car for the long drive home. Let me just say that this is the cutest Starbucks I’ve ever seen! It’s very small and cozy, located in a white, old-looking shop with beautiful rich green shutters and green door. The barista who took my order was so sweet and it was just the perfect ending to the day!

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And here’s my outfit that I wore to Niagara-on-the-Lake! Would it be a day out if I didn’t take a snap of my outfit, really?

Beret - Joe Fresh
Jacket - Forever 21
Sweater - Gap
Jeans - Garage (I only ever wear Garage High Rise Roller Jeggings, they’re so flattering and comfy!)
Ankle Boots - Madden Girl by Steve Madden

Have you ever been to Niagara-on-the-Lake?

Felicia x

20 Years

I'm twenty years old y'all!! I know, it's a shock to me as well. I recently had my birthday on the 20th of August. Two whole decades of my life have officially gone by. I know to a lot of people that seems like nothing, but to me, it's completely mind-blowing that I'm now in my twenties. It's been a long time coming, since my friends are already 20! 

I was stuck wondering what sort of post I should write up for my 20th birthday. A '20 things I've learned in 20 years' post? Or a birthday tag, maybe? I really couldn't decide. But I remembered a post I saw a while back where someone had reflected on what they'd learned since their last birthday. I thought I'd do a bit of that, but also mix in a few things I've learned through my life as a whole. 

So kick back, relax, grab yourself a snack. Maybe get yourself a fancy drink - it is my champagne birthday, after all! 

A reason, a season, or a lifetime

I'm sure you've heard the saying that people come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. I know it's super cliche, but it is true. In twenty years, I've come across people from every category. And honestly, sometimes it can be pretty hard to determine who is who. Some of the people I thought were 'lifetimes' ended up being 'reasons'. In some cases, it was someone who was in my life for a short time that impacted my life positively; and others, it was negative. But the lessons I've learned from those not-so-great relationships have moulded me into the person I am today and I've learned to be grateful for that, instead of just fixating on how things could've gone better.

Mental illness doesn't make you 'weak'

This was a lesson that took me so long to learn. Despite being completely supportive of other people's mental health, I have always been really hard and unsympathetic towards my own. In the early years of dealing with my anxiety, I had someone say that I was 'weak' for suffering from mental illness, whereas those who don't suffer are 'strong'. As if strong people can somehow fight off mental illness...? It was obviously completely ignorant and plain wrong to say. But being a young teen, it really took a toll on me. Mental illness doesn't make anybody weak. In fact, people who suffer from mental illness are some of the strongest people out there. As much as I hate dealing with anxiety, it has definitely made me a stronger person over the years. 

Friends who stick around during tough times are the ones who'll last forever

I've been through a lot of ups and downs in my life. Like, a lot, a lot. In that, I really came to realize who my true friends are and not only that, but just generally who I wanted to be in my life. Friends should make your life better, not worse. That was something I had a hard time coming to grips with. I'm the kind of person who hates to rock the boat. But there were just certain toxic relationships in my life I had no choice but to step away from, for my own happiness. With that being said, there've been friendships that have really bettered me and my life as a whole. I saw something online awhile ago that said something like, friends you've just met in uni know you better than friends you've known your entire life. And honestly, it couldn't be more true for me. The friends I've made in uni are incredible and those friendships have been life-changing. 

Don't let anyone deter you from going after your dreams

Let me say it again, just in case you didn't hear me... DON'T LET ANYONE DETER YOU FROM GOING AFTER YOUR DREAMS. I don't care what your dream is - doctor, psychologist, beekeeper, car mechanic. Anything. If it's what you want to do with your life and you know it'll make you happy, then do it. So what if someone says that chances are you won't make it in your career field? The only way to know is to try. You've got a long life ahead of you, especially when you're 17 or 18 and leaving secondary school. Don't go on a career path that makes you miserable just to make you other people happy. Take it from someone who's been there; it's so not worth it and you'll definitely regret it later. 

Hope you're all having an amazing week!

Felicia x

If We Were Having Coffee

I've seen a bunch of bloggers doing posts called If We Were Having Coffee over the last few months, where they do a bit of a life update in more of a chatty way, and I decided that I needed to try it out for myself! I think that blog posts can be a very one-way street sometimes, but these sorts of posts kind of make it feel more like a couple of friends sat together chatting about life - over a cup of coffee, of course. 

So, grab yourself a cup of coffee, tea, hot cocoa, or whatever you'd like, and let's jump in!

If we were having coffee... I'd likely be having an iced caramel macchiato from Starbucks. It's one of my favourite iced coffee drinks for summer, well that and the iced white chocolate mocha. I've recently had my very first iced caramel macchiato of the season (by recently, I mean today) and it was heavenly. I love my iced coffee y'all.

If we were having coffee... I'd tell you about how my boyfriend has gone home to live with his parents for the summer, while he works in Toronto. It's been super weird not having him around much this month as he's only been able to visit once so far. It really goes to show how quickly you get used to having someone around all the time. Luckily, I'll get to see him again this weekend, then in July and August for our vacations together!

If we were having coffee... I'd tell you that it was recently my one-year anniversary of living in my new house. We officially moved in on May 5th, 2017. Can you believe it? It's been a whole year! It's been a total whirlwind of a year, especially since the first half of it was spent moving in and organizing things to feel like home. I can honestly say now that this place feels 100% like home to me. I love this house, this neighbourhood, and especially this town.

If we were having coffee... I'd tell you that I'm getting very excited for my trip to Orlando, as it not only means that I get to be in my favourite place in the world but also I get to spend a lot more time reading. I get the majority of my reading done by the beach or by the pool, where I have very little distraction. Am I the only one? 

If we were having coffee... I'd tell you that this past weekend was Victoria Day here in Canada! If you don't know, we have been celebrating Queen Victoria's birthday here for a very, very long time, and it's considered a statutory holiday for us, meaning that we get a day off for it. My town actually did it's first ever annual fireworks display for the holiday last Sunday which was a lot of fun! It's definitely a new tradition for us, for sure. 

If we were having coffee... I'd brag a little bit about how I fixed my iPad, which hasn't been working for the last year and a half. I was so fed up that I was starting to even look at buying a new one (mine's about 8 years old, so it was justified). The biggest issue, among others, was that I wasn't able to log into my Apple ID which obviously controls like everything. I finally realized that it was because somehow the date was wrong on my iPad, so it was messing everything else up. I was quite proud of myself for figuring it out, as I'm literally the least technologically savvy person in the world. 

If we were having coffee... I'd tell you that I've been having the worst time trying to force myself to pack for Florida. I don't know why, but packing is such a chore for me. My dad is leaving before my mum and I, as he's driving the car down, so I have a bunch of stuff to send with him but I just can't be bothered to pack them. The possibility of me forgetting things grows greater with every passing day, haha.

What have you guys been up to lately?

Felicia x

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Strolling Through Port Dover

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Welcome back loves! The weather has been absolutely gorgeous as of late!! I cannot believe we've finally been having consistently nice days. It's honestly the talk of my town, no joke. Anywhere you go, you can guarantee that somebody is going to bring up how nice the weather has been.

The other day, my mum, my boyfriend, and I decided we would do a little day trip together as my dad was out of town. Port Dover is a very small lakeside town on the northern shore of Lake Erie. My parents took a trip out there last year after we moved into our new house, and they absolutely loved it so I thought that since the weather was nice, I should take a trip down to see what all the fuss is about!!

It's about a forty minute drive down my county's main highway, which literally cuts down the middle of a bunch of towns so we had really lovely views of some cute small towns on the way there.

As soon as we got to Port Dover, I decided I loved it. I'm a huge sucker for small towns (obviously, since I moved to one) and especially local boutiques and cute restaurants. Port Dover is full of them!!! We walked down the main road right by the beach and popped into about a dozen small shops with clothes, soaps, home decor, antiques, basically anything you could think of. I'm obsesseddddddd. I took so many pictures of all the different shops we stopped at, so you guys can also enjoy the literal heaven that is Port Dover.

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It was just so beautiful and it had that really lovely small town feel (a woman came into a shop with her dog and the shop owner told us that he comes to visit her every day and she leaves out water for him omg I'm crying). It was a pretty lovely day to visit, although it was super windy which was not good for the dress I was wearing and the locals saw way more of me than they'd bargained for haha.

On our way back home, we stopped at a little local restaurant, The Argyle Street Grill. I've passed this place about a hundred times before and finally suggested we popped in there for a late lunch. It was soo good, even though I didn't even love my meal haha. My mum and I ordered drinks as my boyfriend was lovely enough to be the DD (thanks babe!!) and they were amazingggg. My mum had the strawberry margarita and I had a spiked raspberry lemonade, which is probably now one of my fav drinks ever. For my entree, I had a small bowl of asiago chicken linguine that was not my fav and a bowl of Caesar salad which was reallyyyy good. It was the perf way to end off the day, and I'll definitely be heading back there for dinner sometime!

What I Wore:
• Polka Dot Wrap Dress (x - out of stock in blue)
• Nine West Crossbody Handbag (x - similar)
• NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick in Kitten Heels (x)

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Enjoy your week lovelies! 

Felicia x

16Personalities Test + Results

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Back in high school, there were two half-courses that we were required to take in order to graduate: Civics and Careers. Civics was all about going over the basic knowledge of the Canadian government. Whereas Careers was all about preparing us for the workforce - like teaching us how to put together a resume, how to do a job interview, etc. One of the assignments in our Careers class was the 16Personalities online test, which is based on the Myers-Briggs personality test. Learning about our personality type was supposed to help us determine what career path is best for us. Did it help? Prob not but oh well. Being like 15 years old, I never wrote down which personality type I was because I didn't really care all that much about it. But since then, I got curious about what category I fall into so I recently decided to take the 16Personalities test again and I decided that I'd do a little post of my experience and results. Not sure if this is the kinda thing you guys are into, but I thought that it was pretty cool to find out my personality type and what it all meant!

So without further ado...

THE TEST

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The test itself is a short multiple-choice format. The front page of the test gives a quick run-down of the "rules". Of course, they want you to answer the questions as honestly and accurately as possible. As it says, the test takes under 12 minutes so it's pretty quick and the questions are quite straightforward. It took me around 7-8 minutes to do this, but then again I'm quite quick when it comes to reading.

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For each question, you get 7 multiple choice options, ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree and everything in-between. They do advise you to avoid clicking 'neutral' too much as it will obviously not give you a very accurate result. The questions are mostly about your work ethic, how you react in certain situations/problems, and how you socialize with others, as well as if you're more logical or creative - the whole left or right brain thing. I was only stumped on a few of the questions, but for the most part, my answers tended to fall on the far ends of the spectrum (either strongly agree or disagree).

THE RESULTS

The results are obvs the most interesting part of the test, so I'll just jump right into it!

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My personality type, as it says, is INFJ-T, or "Advocate". On the results page, it gives a breakdown of how you rank in each category. In every category, I clearly never fall somewhere in between - I always am more on one side than the other. I ranked:

MIND - 82% Introverted / 18% Extroverted ENERGY - 67% Intuitive / 33% Observant NATURE - 12% Thinking / 88% Feeling TACTICS - 81% Judging / 19% Prospecting IDENTITY - 8% Assertive / 92% Turbulent

I was not at all surprised that it says that I'm far more introverted than I am extroverted - in fact, I'm more surprised that the extroverted side was so high. Though I wasn't surprised with the result for Identity, it's pretty crazy how I'm so far on one side than the other - I barely am "assertive" at all. But if you knew me well, you'd know that it's hardly a shock that it didn't find me assertive at all haha

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What's really cool about the 16Personalities site is not only do they give you that breakdown, but you can also click a button to reveal more information about your specific personality type. So you get a really good idea of what your personality type is!

According to this, my "role" (what determines my goals, interests, and preferred activities) is Diplomat and my "strategy" (how I approach everyday situations and achieve my goals) is constant improvement - which sounds quite like me. The Advocate personality is apparently quite rare - less than 1% of the population!!! - and I'm not sure if that's good??

One of the traits of Advocates is helping others, which is something we as a group strongly believe is important. It says, "Advocates tend to see helping others as their purpose in life, but while people with this personality type can be found engaging rescue efforts and doing charity work, their real passion is to get to the heart of the issue so that people need not be rescued at all." That is very much me. It goes on to say that Advocates are very creative and have strong opinions that we fight for. We also easily connect with other people, however, our Introverted side makes us have to spend more time recharging, away from others.

The site also tells you some famous people who share the Advocate personality type!! According to this site, I share a personality type with Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Alanis Morissette (fellow Canadian gal!), Jimmy Carter, Nicole Kidman, Goethe, and Morgan Freeman. Those are some pretty good people to share a personality type with imo. It also tells me some fictional characters I share the type with which is really fun - Jon Snow (Game of Thrones), James Wilson (House M.D.), Aragorn (The Lord of the Rings), Galadriel (The Lord of the Rings), Michael Scofield (Prison Break), Rose Dewitt Bukater (Titanic), Desmond Hume (Lost) and Aramis (The Three Musketeers). I don't know any of those characters except for Rose, but I LOVE Rose so I'll take it lol

Some of my strengths are: creative, insightful, inspiring and convincing, decisive, determined and passionate, and altruistic. Some of my weaknesses are: sensitive, extremely private, perfectionistic, always need to have a cause, and can burn out easily. I def agree with a lot of those, especially that I'm a perfectionist.

It goes on for pages about my personality type, but really the rest is more about relationships and friendships and other personal stuff that's less interesting. Personally, I love doing personality tests and anything that can give some insight into why people are the way that they are. I think it's really helpful to understand who you are and what your place in this world is. I would def recommend doing this test if you're interested in this sorta thing. It's by far the most thorough, in-depth test I've come across online yet.

I hope you enjoyed my little rambly post. I'd love to hear about your personality types so if you've done the test before, leave me a comment below!

Felicia x

February Favourites

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Another month, another bunch of favourite products to share with you guys!! I'm v excited to share these with you guys, as I've had a pretty successful month in terms of trying out new products. The first product I've been loving in February is the Not Your Mother's Clean Freak Tapioca Dry Shampoo. Good gracious, that's a mouthful. I've owned this dry shampoo before, but not since they updated it and added on the "tapioca". They also changed the scent, which is pretty cool because although I did like the original scent, I am seriously obsessed with the new Warm Sugar scent. This dry shampoo leaves no white residue and does such a great job at freshening up second-day hair.

Another hair care product I've been unable to live without recently is the Vibrant Sexy Hair Colour Lock Trio. This includes the Vibrant Sexy Hair Colour Lock Shampoo, Vibrant Sexy Hair Colour Lock Conditioner, and Vibrant Sexy Hair Colour Guard Post Colour Sealer. These three in-shower products are meant to be used together to keep your colour-treated hair stay looking fresh out of the salon for as long as possible. They're all SLS and SLES free, which is really important, and they smell pretty amazing. Since I've started using these, I've actually noticed a difference in both the vibrancy and the overall quality of my hair!!

I know I only picked this up quite recently, but I have fallen head over heels in love with the Lush Eau Roma Water toner that I featured in my haul post. I've been using this twice daily since I bought it, in the morning and before I head to bed, and I swear it's already made a visible difference to my skin! My skin has already been getting close to clearing up (thank Jesus) but this has only sped up the process even more. It's very gentle on the skin and quite refreshing. Two thumbs up on this one.

Moving onto non-beauty related products... I've recently been taking steps to become more mindful and positive, to help with my anxiety, and something that's really been helping me with that is the 52 Lists for Happiness by Moorea Seal. This is a sort of guided journal where you follow weekly prompts for list-making which help to bring balance into your life. I've only been using it now a few weeks, but I'm loving it so far! Not only is it super helpful, but the journal itself is beautiful with its hardcover bounding, and gorgeous photos and illustrations on every page.

Definitely a more random favourite of mine lately has been Milk Chocolate Covered Raisins. These were the candies I always reached for at the movie theatre when I was a kid. Recently, I got such a craving for these bad boys, so my mum picked them out for me one day while she was out and I've since been in heaven.

Last, but certainly not least, is the beloved Disney film, Lady and the Tramp. This was one of my all-time favourite films as a kid because it's a film about DOGS. How can you not love it? Lady is just the sweetest little thing ever. Disney recently released this from the vault and I picked it up on it's release day. I went all the way out to the mall - which is 30 mins away - then all the way to Walmart - which is another 20 mins away from the mall - where I finally found it!! Thank god. Haha

What products have you guys been loving lately?

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: My First Car

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Happy Friday, everyone! Hope you've all had a lovely week. It's been a bit of a surreal, crazy week for me. Between everything, especially with trying to get back into the regular swing of things, I haven't been able to devote much time to my blog - hence the missed post on Monday. Hopefully (fingers crossed!) things will be much less jam-packed next week!

  • My boyfriend and I finally pummelled through the last few episodes of Riverdale on Monday night, so now we're fully caught up (minus the mid-season premiere). I'm def interested to see where they go with this storyline for the rest of season 2.
  • My online order from Joe Fresh came in earlier this week and I've been so pumped about that. I love Joe Fresh, as the clothes are very feminine and classic, which is very much my style. Unfortunately, the items I bought - this shirt and this dress - are too light for this season, so I won't be able to wear them until the spring.
  • I'm becoming way too obsessed with purchasing books. I seriously end up at Indigo at least twice a week. I'm not even done my TBR for January, and I've already bought two books for February haha
  • It would be wrong of me not to share my most exciting news of the week... I GOT MY FIRST CAR! It was an absolutely amazingly generous gift from my parents. On Tuesday night, they went out for a "bank meeting" (aka buying my car) and came home with the news. I spent the week picking up some essentials to put in the car and tonight (Friday night), I picked her up. She's a slightly used 2017 Kia Soul EX+, in a dark grey colour. I've affectionately named her Maggie and I'm in love.

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Getting Back into Things...

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Hi everybody! As lovely as my holidays were, it's definitely nice to be back to blogging on a regular schedule. And to end off my first week back to blogging is my Friday Thoughts post!

  • Monday was an absolutely crazy day. My family and I walked outside of our house to find rushing water throughout the entire garage. It looked as though we'd had a gas leak. We went into full-on panic mode - grabbed the dog, called 911, and ran across the street. One hour and two firetrucks later, we found out it was actually a water pipe that had burst and was mixing with gas that was leaking from a can my dad uses to fill the snowblower. It was so terrifying but thankfully it wasn't anything in the end.

  • This dreary weather has already begun to get me down... I'm so eager for spring weather. Thankfully, we've had a huge bout of rain and warm-ish weather which has melted most of the snow. This summer-lovin' gal is soo over winter.

  • I've been recently binge-watching The Royals with my boyfriend and mum, and New Girl on my own. I had started to watch The Royals awhile back but then forgot about it. We've finally nearly gotten caught up. But I've been especially into New Girl. I love Zooey Deschanel, and especially love her as Jess Day.

  • On Wednesday, I got a chance to go out and have brunch with my very close friend who I have not seen in well over a month. It was so lovely to catch-up over my favourite breakfast, eggs benedict. I always love reuniting with friends, especially when I haven't seen them in forever!

  • My mum got a chance to rummage through my grandma's old photo albums this week whilst visiting her in Hamilton. She took some pics of the best ones, and that night we took a trip down memory lane, where I realised from photos like this one that I've got the same hairdo now as I did when I was a kid lol

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Well, that's it for this week. I hope you all have a marvellous weekend!

Lots of love

Felicia x

Holiday Catch-Up

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Hello everyone! How are you all doing today? I'm currently writing to you from the comfort of my sofa in Florida, where it is drizzly and freezing outside - not the sort of weather I was hoping as my send off. I'm also feeling quite poorly, as I've got a sore throat and a wicked earache today. But since today is my last day of vacay, I thought it'd be a good opportunity to catch you all up on what I've been up to on my Christmas/New Year's break in a journal-style post.

My vacation started on Christmas Day. My family did our usual Christmas morning thing - waking up early, having egg sandwiches for breaky, then opening presents. Then we cleaned up quick and hustled on over Mississauga, where we spent an hour hanging out with some of Steven's family. It's always nice that we get to see them on Christmas, before we head off for the holidays.

Around noon-ish, we said our goodbyes and headed to Buffalo, New York to catch our flight. We normally fly out of Buffalo as it's a) cheaper and b) way easier than travelling from Pearson Airport. This year, we flew with Jet Blue which was a god sent cause they have those little tv screens on the back of the seats that play tv shows and films. I was thrilled to find out that they were playing The Santa Clause on Freeform as I hate flying (despite years of air travel experience) and it was a nice distraction for my anxiety.

When we got to Florida, we had our second part of our Christmas tradition - more prezzies and a screening of The Polar Express. A perfect ending to a wonderful Christmas.

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On Boxing Day, we headed over to Disney's Grand Floridian resort - aka my favourite Disney hotel - for brunch at the Grand Floridian Cafe. I absolutely love the Cafe. The eggs benedict is very yummmmm. I always love walking around the Grand Floridian and 'oohing' and 'awing' over the wedding pavilion! We spent the afternoon monorail resort hopping so we could see all of the Christmas decorations. I love to see all the trees and especially the Grand Floridian life-size gingerbread house.

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We also popped into Disney Springs to see the Christmas Tree Trail!

Of course, we made a trip to Magic Kingdom on our trip. It was the first chilly night of the trip, but still, it was bearable. Gave me an excuse to wear my favourite holiday Olaf sweatshirt, with my new Christmas Mickey ears. We got to ride Haunted Mansion and Jungle Cruise - which was Christmas decorated and they called it Jingle Cruise which was GREAT. And no Magic Kingdom trip is complete without watching the Happily Ever After fireworks on Main Street with a Starbucks coffee in hand!

Unfortunately, my anxiety popped in to visit on the night I was supposed to be going to Epcot - my favourite Disney park - and I had to have a stay-in night instead. Boo :(

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But the next day, I made it out to Hollywood Studios for the evening and we had a ton of fun despite freezing our asses off!!!! It was about 14 degrees Celsius which is super cold for Florida and I was wearing a t-shirt, a cardigan, and jeans - yet I was frozen. I ended up buying a super cute Stormtrooper sweater AND a Minnie & Mickey Mouse blanket which I wrapped around me. We pretty much just walked around, had some coffee, and then watched the Star Wars fireworks show - which was soooo cool. Every time I saw Leia, I pretty much cried.

New Year's Eve was spent the way it always is for my family. A big dinner at home, a round of Cards Against Humanity, and watching Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve when the ball dropped. Usually, we get to play Cards Against Humanity outside in our backyard but it was like 9 degrees out this year so we had to stay indoors which was kind of a bummer. But we made the best of it! On New Year's Day, my parents went out for dinner with their good friend who lives in Orlando, as they do every year. My boyfriend and I stayed in, ordered some pizza, and watched Riverdale in our pjs. The perfect night!

Now I'm at the end of my trip. Sad :( Today, I was lucky enough to get to pop out to go to Books A Million, where they were having a 'buy 2 get the third free' sale. I was in literal heaven. I was on a book buying break for all of December because of Christmas coming up. So now that I'm free of that, I'm ready to buy every book in sight! I purchased The Girls by Emma Cline, My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella, and Paris for One & Other Stories by Jojo Moyes. I'm already forty pages into The Girls!

I hope everyone had an incredible holiday break! I'll be back to my regular scheduling of posts by next week.

Felicia x

2018 Goals

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I don't believe in New Year's Resolutions. I feel like every year, we create these expectations for ourselves that we make ourselves feel horrible for when we don't stick with them. However, I definitely believe in writing out a few things I'd like to try to accomplish with the span of the year. For me, goal-setting can be really beneficial to my overall success so, here are the goals I'm setting for myself this year.

Create - and stick to - a TBR list

Oddly enough, considering how often I read and how much I enjoy it, I've never actually prepared a proper TBR list. Weird, right? I'm the kind of person to buy a new book I want to read, then put it on my evergrowing pile of unread books and reread the Harry Potter series for the billionth time instead. But not this year. I've already gone ahead and created my first-draft TBR list - which I'm sure will be added to once my favourite authors start to release new novels!

Declutter my wardrobe

It's time. It's time to say goodbye to the fraying, stretched-out pair of jeans I wear way too often and should've tossed months ago. It's time to part ways with the terribly worn out sweater I've owned since I was fourteen. I always hate to go through my wardrobe and declutter, as I hold onto everything because of sentimental value. But since I moved, my closet space is a third of what I used to have and now I have to share the space with my boyfriend - so it's time. Luckily, there are some things that I don't need that are still in good shape that someone else might need that I will be donating.

Reading challenge

This year, I'm challenging myself to read 50 books. Yes, you read that right. Fifty. Five zero. It seems crazy, I know, but I think I can do it! Goodreads allows you to set a goal and then once you record the books you've finished on the app or site, they add that book to your goal. I did this reading challenge for the first time last year and exceeded my goal of 17 with ease. This year, I'm up for a real challenge.

Rediscovering my creativity

This last year was a bit of a dud for me when it comes to writing. I had my heart set on making major progress on my novel, but it never happened. I was feeling a complete lack of inspiration. So, this year, I'm ready for a new creativity boost. I am convinced that comes from broadening my horizons. That means new spaces for writing, new adventures, and new experiences.

Respect the skin

The first half of last year, I did not stick to a skincare routine at all. I treated my skin like crap, if I'm honest. I finally started to treat my skin with some respect in the last few months of 2017 and I could almost immediately see the difference - my acne was disappearing and my stubborn acne scars have almost vanished. I've definitely learned my lesson. I'm carrying this skincare routine on over to 2018 and sticking to it for good.

1 Second Everyday

I am a big fan of the 1 Second Everyday app. I think it's a really cool idea. If you've never heard of it, it's an app where you take a one-second-long video every day and then you can put the videos into a compilation - pretty explanatory, right? I first heard of it from Zoella on Twitter about a year ago (who has since posted a video from 1 Second Everyday to show her year of being twenty-six). I'm determined to post a second every day for the entire year!

Focus on my health

I have the worst immune system. Ever. It's honestly awful. I've always had a poor immune system and this year, I'm going to be taking steps towards improving my that as well as my overall health. It's time to def get my health into check!

Happy New Year's to all!

Felicia x

Reflecting on 2017

Happy New Year everybody!!

2017 is officially behind us. Hasta la vista! My final year of being a teen is gone. Yikes.

Every year, as a new year is upon me, I like to reflect on the past year. It's always good to reflect on the good times, even the bad ones, before you move on. I thought I'd share some of my favourite and some of my not-so-favourite moments of 2017 with you guys!

1) Moving House

The first half of this year was a whirlwind. It was full of moving boxes, tape guns, and bubble wrap as I packed up all my belongings and prepared to move out of my house. The move was a huge adjustment. It's always going to be a hard time moving out of the house you grew up in. I was so uneasy about the idea of leaving my house, leaving my hometown, and the life I was so familiar with. But, in the end, moving away was such an amazing decision for myself and my family. It introduced me to a town I absolutely adore. I'm so in love with my house. It's been such an incredible experience, all around. My family's so happy!

2) New York City

New York City. Wow. One of my favourite cities in the whole world. I immediately fell in love back when I visited for the first time in 2009, and ever since my last trip in 2010, I've been dying to return. This past spring, my family finally booked another trip back - but this time with my boyfriend, an NYC newbie. I was so thrilled to see New York again, especially since this time I had the opportunity to show my boyfriend around.

Read about my travels: here, here, here, and here

3) Anxiety

This year, my anxiety was at an all-time high. I spent the better part of this year suffering from severe anxiety, social and general. After many, many years of battling this disorder, this was the year I finally said, 'Enough is enough'. It was time for me to focus on myself, and take a step forward in bettering my mental health, for the first time in pretty much ever. It's been a hell of a hard time, but I'm glad to have finally taken this step, and I'm ready to see what I can accomplish in the new year!

4) Disney

Of course, Disney has been a huge part of my year, just like it has been for the majority of my life. I think my love for Disney grew immensely this year - if it's even possible for it to grow any more! I have found a new admiration for the parks, the resort, and all things Disney-related. For the first time in nearly a decade, I got to stay on property at the parks, at Disney's Port Orleans French Quarter Resort in August. I stayed with my boyfriend and it was our first ever trip together alone as a couple. It was so fun to show him around, as he'd never stayed on property before, and to experience all the things about staying at the resorts that I loved so much as a kid. We're already saving up for our trip in 2018!

Keep up to date with my Disney travels on my Disney Instagram account: here

5) Friends & Family

This year, my relationships with my friends and family have become so much closer and so important to me. When you're struggling with a mental illness, as I am, it can be so hard to keep up with your friends as you're constantly feeling blah. But my friends have been so amazing this past year. They're the kind of friends that you know will be with you through thick and thin - you always know they're there for you, no matter what. I am so grateful for my friends, but also for my supportive boyfriend and parents. I honestly don't know what the hell I'd do without them :) haha

I am so eager to see what 2018 has in store for me. I'm not a firm believer in resolutions - in fact, I hardly believe in them at all - but I definitely have a few things I'm going to hold myself to in the new year, which I look forward to sharing with you all! I hope you all have a very fun, very safe New Year's Eve. I'll talk to you very soon!!

Felicia x

What I Got For Christmas (+ Life Update)

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Hello everybody! Merry Christmas to you! I hope that you all had a wonderful day yesterday with your family and your loved ones. I love to read other people's 'What I Got for Christmas' posts. I don't know about you, but there's something so lovely about hearing people so excited to share what they were gifted. I know that some people find these posts to be braggy, but I don't think that at all. I love haul posts, and why should these kind of posts be any different? I def don't want to come off as a 'show off' or anything. I am genuinely so grateful for everything that everyone gifted me. I have the most generous, kind, giving family and boyfriend ever - not to brag or anything haha. If you're as nosy as I am about what others receive for Christmas, then keep reading to hear about some of the things I was gifted this holiday season!

Kate Spade Cameron Street Perforated Large Lanemy boyfriend gifted me this beautiful red-wine-coloured Kate Spade purse. I'm in love! It's the perfect size for day-to-day outings (shopping, going out for coffee, etc.) and I love that it has a shoulder strap. I especially love the perforated rose decal on the purse's exterior. My parents also gifted me the matching wallet so now I feel very put together when I'm out and about!

Soap and Glory The Righteous ButterI mentioned my love for The Righteous Butter back in my September Favourites post. I won't go too much into this one since I've already done so in my favourites post. My parents slipped this into my stocking this year and I was so jazzed when I found it in there! Haha. I already have a tub of this, but I asked for another so that I wouldn't run out anytime soon.

Funko PopsI got a ton of Funko Pops this Christmas. I've been making a list of them that I want to collect for months now and I've already got a whole set-up planned out in my head, so I'm glad to finally have some to get started with! I received Belle (Beauty and the Beast 2017), Maui (Moana),Dale Cooper (Twin Peaks), Lorelai Gilmore(Gilmore Girls), Rory Gilmore(Gilmore Girls), and Sookie St. James(Gilmore Girls). I have a lot of organizing to do!

Juniper BooksIf you've never heard of Juniper Books before, you're missing out. Juniper sells custom books and collections - essentially hardcover books with beautiful front covers and dust jackets. I fell in love with them earlier this year and received a bunch from my boyfriend for my birthday. But this holiday, my parents bought me three Charles Dickens books - Great Expectations, Bleak House, and A Tale of Two Cities from the Make Your Own Literary Classics set.

Origins Out of Trouble 10 Minute Mask to Rescue Problem SkinI am very very very excited to use this product! I have heard really good things about this face mask and Origins as a brand. You may know through previous posts that I have been having some pretty substantial issues with my skin as of late.... in short, my skin and I are not simpatico at the moment. Hopefully, this mask comes to the rescue!

Too Faced Peach Blur Translucent Smoothing Finishing PowderI just love Too Faced's peach products. Don't we all? The Sweet Peach palette is something I constantly reach for in my makeup drawer, and now I'm excited to add this powder to my collection. I've already used this a couple of times and I absolutely love it.

I cannot describe how grateful I am for everything I received this year. My parents have always been very generous with their gift-giving and I am so glad that I'm old enough to give back to them every Christmas season - with gifts bigger than 'DIY soup in a jar' (yup, my parents received that about 11 years ago - be jelly).

On another note, I thought I'd quickly update all of you on what's going on in my little world. Posts are going to be more disorganized for the next couple weeks as I am currently on vacay with my parents and my boyfriend in Orlando, Florida! I'm trying to write out some posts while I have a free moment, but obviously, it's been go-go-go ever since we touched down in Orlando on Christmas and I can't keep up like I usually can. I will write up some posts on what I've gotten up to and hopefully upload those soon... It's moments like these that make me wonder if I should start posting again on my YouTube channel.....

I'll def see you guys before the New Year but until then, have a wonderful holiday break!

P.S. I'd love to hear what you guys got for Christmas! Lemme know in the comments :)

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Pre-Christmas Mayhem

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I'm so very sorry that this post is up late! I'd meant to have it out last night but it just wasn't meant to be. I've had such a crazy week, I just ran out of time! But better late than never, I always say!

  • Christmas is so close!! Good gracious. December goes by in the blink of an eye, doesn't it? I feel like I've a million things left to do. Christmas time seems to be largely about being busy for me haha

  • I've finally seen Star Wars: The Last Jedi!! The four of us (my parents, my bf, and I) went out to see it at the VIP theatre on Tuesday because tickets were super cheap and we love to have a ~special~ drink with our film haha. Leading up to seeing this film, we rewatched the original 3 films plus The Force Awakens, so we were pumped. Despite mixed reviews, we all really really enjoyed it! I thought they did a good job at staying true to the Star Wars storyline, without seeming so repetitive. I also liked that there were some humorous bits, like the first bit of the film (I won't say what it was for the sake of those who haven't seen it yet!).

  • My boyfriend and I had a lovely dinner with his parents to celebrate Christmas in the middle of this past week. We decided to meet at a restaurant about 40 mins away from my house and exchange gifts. We had a great time, and I was very spoiled by Steven's parents as they gifted me a super cute Roots poncho with a huge loose turtleneck (which I love) and a pair of adorable slipper booties!

  • I'm loving the snow. As I've mentioned, I'm all for a white Christmas. I had a bit of a worry at the beginning/middle of this week as the snow completely melted away. Like, I'm talking most of the snow was gone. I was so bummed out, I was hoping for a miracle at that point. And then it happened! Thursday night, the snow came and there is now a fresh blanket of beautiful white snow on my town. I'm major heart-eyes right now.

  • My grandma came by later in the week to celebrate Christmas with my family, which was so nice as we haven't seen her as often now that she no longer lives with us. Since my boyfriend had to leave the next day to spend the weekend at home with his own family, we decided to exchange our gifts on that night - and my parents were so lovely as they did not only a stocking for me but also one for my boyfriend to carry on one of my favourite traditions to us. Some of my favourite bits from the stocking were the Too Faced Lip Injection Glossy in 'Milkshake', the heavenly Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter, and afelt pennantwith my university name on it, which I've always wanted. My boyfriend spoiled me rotten this year - he gifted me a beautiful wine-coloured Kate Spade purse and a Beauty and the Beast 2017 Soundtrack Vinyl Record which made me legit emotional lol

I hope you all have a marvellous Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! I'll speak to you all very very soon! Happy holidays :)

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Harry Potter + Snow

Happy Friday to you all! Another Friday... jeez, before we all know it, it will be Christmas Eve. Who's excited for Christmas!? I know I am. Seeing all of the Blogmas posts from blogs I follow has only amplified my excitement. Maybe I'll have to partake in Blogmas next year....? We'll have to wait and see! But, for now, here's my weekly update for you.

  • I've started to re-read the Harry Potter series! I'm not really sure why, but I suddenly got into a very Harry Potter mood this week. I watched the first and then the final films last night, and today I've been lounging around in my Ron Weasley sweater, reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. I'm already onto Chamber of Secrets lol
  • A few weeks back, on Black Friday weekend, I ordered two vinyl records from Urban Outfitters as there was a ridiculous sale on records (something like "buy one, get one 50% off"). SO I ordered the Moulin Rouge and the 500 Days of Summer soundtracks. Flash forward to this week, they still hadn't sent a shipping confirmation or anything so I started to panic. Then they said 500 Days of Summer was back-ordered. So Moulin Rouge unexpectedly arrived yesterday afternoon. And today, 500 Days of Summer arrived... along with another copy of Moulin Rouge hahaha, so I guess I have two copies now??
  • Exam season is upon us! I get lucky every time, being an English major who takes a lot of online classes and classes that prefer final papers over exams - I only get two or three exams per term. But my boyfriend isn't so blessed. He has two exams tomorrow, one mid-day and then the other at night. So tomorrow will be a sucky day for him :(
  • There is snow expected for tomorrow and I could not be any more excited. I love the first good snowfall of the season. I've been eagerly awaiting our first snowfall for weeks now, after a fifteen-min snow tease last month. My family thinks I'm nuts (they're not snow lovers). I don't even really like snow. I just like it in December, but once Christmas is over, I'm like bye. 
  • I'm getting very excited for my trip to Florida. We live Christmas day, as usual, and I can't wait to see all that Disney has in store for this magical Christmas season. I truly believe that Disney wins when it comes to holiday decor. I just love to see all their decorations - I promise to share it all with you guys!

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Twinkling Lights

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Welcome back, everyone! So sorry I missed posting yesterday. I got so caught up in a million things I've been doing lately, that it totally slipped my mind that it was Thursday! But, it's Friday, and that means it's time for a weekly update.

  • My house has been full of Christmas spirit and excitement as we prepare for our big Christmas party next weekend. There is so much more work put into throwing a party than it may appear from the eyes of a guest! Despite all the hard work, I can't wait to have all of our friends and family over to celebrate the upcoming holiday season.
  • We took part in our very first town Christmas celebration on Thursday. Every year, the town we've moved to throws this event called Light Up Night, where everyone gathers in the park and sings carols, then at 7pm they flick a switch and light up a bunch of Christmas lights. It was so much fun. Everyone was so genuinely happy to be there together. The decorations were adorable. There were even volunteers handing out Tim Horton's hot chocolate for free, which was so thoughtful. I'm so happy to be living in this town. Walking down the main street, past windows of Christmas decorations, made me really grateful for this move. I can absolutely see myself living here for a very long time and also raising a family here.
  • My mum and I started watching Mindhunter on Netflix, and so far I'm really enjoying it. We're only a couple episodes in so far but it's super intense and absolutely fascinating. My mum and I are huge true crime nuts, so to see the characters interact with actors portraying real criminals is so interesting to watch.
  • I've been loving how many Christmas films they've been playing on television lately!! I'm getting sooo excited. It's a month till Christmas after all!!
  • I received a book in the mail this week!! I always love when packages come earlier than expected, and this one came about a week early. It's called My True Love Gave to Me and it's a collection of 12 holiday-themed short stories by a bunch of YA authors, including some of my favourites like Rainbow Rowell and Stephanie Perkins. So far, I'm absolutely loving it!!

That's all for this week. Have a fab weekend!!

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Films and Winter Hand Soaps

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Hello, hello, hello everybody! I have no idea how we've reached yet another Friday.  Anyway, I'm not complaining, as another weekend is upon us - woo!! But before I can begin to celebrate the weekend (aka sleep), here's my weekly Friday Thoughts update for you all!

  • Earlier this week, my family, boyfriend, and I saw Murder on the Orient Express at our nearest movie theatre (which is actually forty mins away haha). We all absolutely loved it! Kenneth Branagh did a fantastic job in this film, as did the rest of the cast. I was seriously impressed with the filmography, the storyline, and the acting of the film. I can't wait for it to be released on DVD.
  • I went a little bit Bath & Body Works crazy this week... My boyfriend had offered to buy me a few hand soaps, as we were running out of the last bunch we'd purchased a few months ago. But they had a huge "buy 10 for $25" promotion, and my boyfriend never ignores a good deal sooo..... guess who has 10 new wintery scented hand soaps??? Haha
  • Finally, the world and I are starting to synchronize in preparing for Christmas. The buses in Hamilton are starting to read "Seasons Greetings/Merry Christmas", I went to a mall tree lighting, and my town has put up a ton of lights and decorations for our big holiday celebration next week. I don't feel so ahead of myself anymore!
  • My boyfriend kindly bought me an adorable 12-pair set of Christmas-themed socks off Amazon and gifted it to me on Monday. Choosing which Christmas socks to wear is a big deal to me now... Never thought I'd say that lol
  • I watched 500 Days of Summer for the first time in, like, four years. I forgot how much I loved it. The "You Make My Dreams Come True" scene puts me in the best mood - it honestly has me giggling out loud, especially when he sees his "reflection" in the car and it's Harrison Ford lmao.
  • We've nearly finished decorating the house for Christmas! We have two trees left to trim (yup, two) and then all we have left to do is wait for the holidays!! Eeeeee I'm so excited - can you tell? Haha
  • On Tuesday, my family popped into our favourite store at the mall in Hamilton: Cinema. Cinema is a dvd shop - one of the last, might I add - that has sooo many movies and especially ones you'd never think of. We bought a three-movie pack that had in it Love Actually, Holiday Inn, and The Family Man.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Felicia x