5/31/12

new necklace : new 'do!

Nea neckace

I got this sweet little minimalist necklace at Tango today! My friend & neighbour, Desiree of sofawned.com recently took over a pretty swanky downtown shop dedicated to sweet fashions, and I was pretty stoked when she brought in a few of my favourite jewelry designers. I popped in after getting my hair tweaked, wanting a necklace to match my new look.
I have always wanted a Nea piece, and so targeted her necklaces. I had a hard time choosing! I was drawn to the nature-inspired pieces Nea does, but ended going for a pretty modern look with the necklace you see here. I'm thrilled with it. It's lightweight, simple, and makes a statement.

new 'do
Nea necklace
new 'd - really short!

Check out how short my hair is! I told Rebecca at Bloodline that it was time to get rid of the hair. I tried growing it out, but it just ended up making me feel frumpy & stuck. Rebecca worked her magic and gave me a pretty sleek, modern 'do. I love it! It's so freeing! I feel like I've lost 10lbs. And I can feel the summer breeze on the back of my neck. Glorious!

new 'do - short!

I've already made another appointment with Rebecca in a month's time to add a punch of colour to the new look. Perhaps pink mixed with black? Who knows! Time to have some fun, don't you think?

Tango : blog twitter
Nea : Etsy twitter 

with new joy,
Caren

5/25/12

Paris: l'object qui parle

l'object qui parle

This is the quirkiest little antique shop I've ever stepped foot in, and oh, did I love it!
I heard about this spot via another blogger's post about her time in Montmartre, Paris.
I knew I wanted to go! So happy Karen and I found it amongst the hilly parts of the area.
It is tiny, and jam-packed with oddities! It's almost overwhelming, and worth a repeat visit or three.
Only a couple of people can actually be in the shop at once, so we waited until it cleared out.

peeking around l'object

One of the stuffed corners of the shop, where Karen and I were checking out the antique butterfly collections. There was seriously no unused space in this little shop! Even the ceiling was dripping in goods to buy. High up on the walls were heads of critters mounted on plaques, where they can overlook the passerbys. I like to think that at night, they all come alive and speak in their native tongue about the various folk who walk through everyday. Yes, I have watched Amelie a few too many times!

l'object bones

Karen bought one of the skulls you see above. They were the coolest! I love the fact that Karen and I both brought home something with antlers. I bought an old deer antler at a flea market. I hope this doesn't make us sound morbid? ;)

the dude at l'object...

The proprietor (a dapper looking young fellow with an edge of awesome) would wait outside of the shop until a sale was made. I took a quick snap of him, and really wish I had asked if I could take a proper photo of him. He was oozing cool. At least you can see his hat in the photo I took!

Vintage shop in Paris

We also popped into the vintage clothing shop next door to the antique store. There are quite a few vintage clothing shops in Paris, much to Karen and I's glee! We found that the majority of these vintage shops stock things that are gently used modern clothes mixed with real vintage. And most of the vintage is from the '70s - '80s eras. However, if you dig enough, you'll find some '50s & '60s goodies. 

I got my goddaughter Astrid a flirty little dress circa the '80s, which fit her like a glove! Karen spotted it, and am I ever glad I brought it back 'cause it was made for Astrid! Check her out here, wearing the polka dotted little frock. I also scored a 1950s dress for Astrid, which is c'est magnifique!

As for what I bought at l'object qui parle, well, it was a small token. A 1930s rusted blue metal number sign from a building. The number 22, which is my birthday/lucky number.
with joy,
Caren

5/23/12

waiting for the storm

{yesterday}
here's a leafy little video of me waiting for the storm.
just before this, I mowed the lawn in anticipation of the storm.
in this 1 minute, 24 second video - which I admit is kind of lame
you'll see my toes, wriggling in anticipation.
then at the very end, there's the happy boom of thunder.
I turned off the camera & shooed all the critters inside,
certain the thunder would get louder
and giant rain drops would soak the ground.
alas, the storm never happened.
instead, the sun poked its hot head back out again.
and I receded into a bad mood.

update: the rain hasn't come yet, but the skies are teasing me!
with joy,
Caren

5/20/12

Sunday Smile: a Moment in Paris

my favourite Parisian pastime

Here I am, back in Paris (well, mentally), lounging on a chair watching the world go by.
I walked through Le Jardin des Tuileries awhile, weaving in and out of the trees and paths.
It was quite wonderful and quietly perfect, this hour I had.
I stopped at the carousel & watched kids jump on & off, and listen to their moms tell them, "one more time..." two or three times.

a Paris carousel

The best moment was when I came across a doggy playdate! Right there, at the Louvre's gardens!
They were like catnip to me, these Parisian pups. I ended up spending a good while petting them & attempting to chat with their owners.
I sat with the people below, listening to them & their dogs interact. It was kind of awesome. I'm sure they thought I was a crazy tourist, being so smiley & taking photos of their dogs. 

Parisian dog playdate
self snap at Le Jardin des Tuileries
{requisite self portrait moment, near the carousel!}
giant colourful flowers at Le Jardin des Tuileries
{giant polka dot flower sculptures, which sadly were fenced off. I wanted to play on them!}
always with the Holga
{I had my trusty Holga with me at all times; took some b&w shots this particular day}

There was a moment when an older Parisian gentlemen struck up a conversation with me. I was so thrilled that he spoke to me in French, as if I were too! I think I blushed, and quickly did the necessary, "parlez vous Anglais?" and he smoothly went into English and asked me where I was from. I wish I could've thought of some brilliant questions to ask him at the time, but I admit to not being quick on my feet when it comes to conversation. Looking back, I wish I asked him if he's ever been in love. The kind of love that is all-encompassing & painful. Or if he had grandchildren. Or how he learned English. Anything other than my lousy attempt at bringing some French into my conversation. Good lord, my tongue does not like that language! I also wish I took a photo of him. He was just so perfectly ... Parisian.

I smile everytime I think of these moments in Paris, and all the in-between instances. That was my hour spent at Le Jardin des Tuileries. Delightful.

p.s. the cafes there are quite lovely, too. Perfect spot to sit, chat, sketch, photograph & sip on a coffee. Karen and I ducked under an umbrella table earlier on our trip, to get out of the rain & refresh ourselves. I loved the gardens so much that I wanted to go back, and the moments above is that return visit.

with joy,
Caren

5/18/12

a happy dog = a happy me

a happy Grace

Here's my Gracie girl, as happy as can be. She ran & ran & ran through the dandelion fluff!
She's happy that I'm home, and that I took her for a long walk.
I'm happy because my pup is happy!
I'm also happy because my old Canon 5SiS digital camera, which had died a while ago, suddenly came back to life! I was so sad the day this camera stopped working - I'm hoping it will keep on snapping for me a while longer! It's got the best super Macro.

a happy me
a happy Grace runs free
looking up to the trees
Grace & Bruno
Grace & Bruno 2

Grace met a big puppy named Bruno on this particular walk. Bruno is large. He is half English Mastiff and half Great Dane. Like, woah! Grace liked Bruno, which was awesome! I hope she still likes Bruno when he's full grown ... he'll be a horse of a dog! Whilst Grace is a kitty of a dog. ;)

Up next: more Paris photos! I've finally finished editing all the digital snaps, so am slowly uploading them into my Flickr account. It's been fun remembering moments via the photos. I also picked up my colour roll of Holga film - just waiting for the B&W film to be ready & I'll share some lomo shots with you, too. I still need to scan in all the photos & Polaroids. oy!

It's a long weekend this weekend! Our May 2/4 aka Victoria Day weekend. I'm spending this weekend hitting up yard sales - starting early tomorrow! Then on Sunday, am meeting up with a few lovely ladies for some fun in the sun with the kids (well, my furry kid Gracie to their human ones!).

Hope your weekend is full of sunshine & sweetness!
with joy,
Caren

5/15/12

White Slim Angel

{hello!}

{in a field of Forget Me Nots}

{plus 5 rolls of film! I immediately put one into camera}

{Buttercup checking out the new camera}

I won this sweet little Angel from Tracey over at sh1ft.org
This camera was a part of Tracey's big birthday giveaway:
she gave away four lomography cameras + film!
A girl after my own heart.
I was so tickled that I had won an Angel;
it's a lomo camera I've never played with before.
It arrived in the mail today - all the way from Australia.
As soon as I opened the package up,
I popped in 1 of the 5 rolls of film included.
I'll have to go on little day trips over the next while,
to use up the 36 shots on this little cutie.
Oh, film photography, you are so much fun!

Thank you Tracey, and happy birthday!
with joy,
Caren

5/14/12

my Paris dress


I bought this vintage '70s dress in Paris; in Montmartre to be exact. At a shop called the Hippy Market. There's more than one Hippy Market in Paris; the one I bought this dress from was at 51, rue Clingancourt. I also visited the Hippy in the Marais. The prices are much higher (twice+ as much!) than those at the regular "Vintage" shops, but I fell in love with the impressionist-like print of this dress - had to have it! I happily wore it about downtown today, full of memories of walking the pretty streets of Paris.


The bracelet seen in the photos above & below depicts butterflies - I bought another bracelet in Paris with butterflies; obviously I am a butterfly kinda girl. This one, though, is by Batucada and is an eco-friendly product. I would have carried these in my shoppe (I used to own an "eco-chic" boutique). My friend Karen bought a necklace from the same company, one with funky colourful circle shapes! I want to get a necklace by this company, too.


The fashion bug has bitten me since being in Paris - I want to surround myself with pretty dresses and chic jackets! I already bought 2 dresses & 2 jackets since coming home (all of which were thrifted, 'cause a girl's gotta be frugal sometimes*!
*emphasis on sometimes

I hope you all won't get tired of all of my Paris-related posts ... I'll try to separate them out with cute pictures of dogs & cats & such so it won't get insufferable! ;)

with joy,
Caren

5/13/12

My Vintage Memory

{Polaroid of my mother's dress}

Visit the lovely Bess Georgette's blog to read My Vintage Memory, dedicated to my mother's 1950s robins egg blue dress. I share a story & some photos I took of my goddaughter Astrid wearing the dress in question.
with joy,
Caren
p.s. Happy Mom's Day to all my mama friends!



5/12/12

home!

A quick little note to let you all know that I'm back from Paris!
And the first thing I thought the first morning I woke up at home - was how much I missed my Parisian mornings. With croissants and butter. With the morning views of Sacre Coeur outside of our apartment's windows. With the anticipation of 'what will I explore today?'.
Our Montmartre, Paris apartment was such a delight - thank you Haven in Paris for making our stay even better than we ever could've dreamed!

{view of Sacre Coeur from our apartment windows}

{see that big yellow circle? that's our Montmartre penthouse apartment!}

{Karen and I - our first visit to the Eiffel Tower - it was a very gray day!}

{Eiffel Tower and me, at night, when it looks its best all dressed up in lights}

I'll be back with lots more from my Parisian trek. I'm still settling back into "real life" - which equates to lots of Gracie pup snuggles & being in a serious Boulangerie (bakery cafe) withdrawal.
I've surrounded myself with my Parisian purchases (gifts to myself & to others) so I can see/touch them and transport myself back to Paris at any given moment.

I have tons of Polaroids to scan and some Holga rolls to develop, too. Can't wait to see how the films turn out!

Chat with you soon, mes ami!
with dreaming-of-croissants joy,
Caren

5/1/12

bonjour Paris



Today is the day I leave for Paris!
Obviously, sleep is not an option.
I haven't even packed yet
(Miss Procrastinator over here).
You can see my travel trajectory
through the illustrations above.
I'll be eating macarons
(and croissants!)
til the cows come home.
I'll see Paris through a Polaroid
and a little yellow Holga
(a digital camera, too).
To Montmartre I will go
with some semblance of style
and a dash of je ne sais quoi.
I will blush at my own inability
to make French sound pretty
(Parisians, please forgive me).
I'll drink champagne whilst
watching the Eiffel Tower light up.
I'll get lost in little shops
full of uniquely Parisian things.
Most of all, though,
I will just let myself Be in Paris.

I'll be away from today until May 10th, soaking in the rain in Paris (really, rain & thunderstorms are in the forecast every single day) and visiting many a patisserie & boulangerie.
I think I'll wish that I had a pair of galoshes for this trip ... but, oh, rain in Paris is supposed to be a lovely thing. I shan't worry about my foot attire. I'll worry about how to pronounce Arrondissement and how to say, "may I take a photo?".
Well, mes ami, I bid myself a bonne voyage and I'll see you sometime after the 10th of May - with a box full of macarons & a suitcase full of souvenirs.
with overwhelming joy,
Caren