J'adore la poutine

Some of my friends hosted a poutine party the other night.  They had all sorts of cool toppings like pulled pork, chili, and even turkey and stuffing.  I am a poutine purist, though.  Cheese curds and gravy were my toppings of choice.  Here's what I wore to their soirée...

Shirt: Garage // Dress {worn as a skirt} Old Navy // 

I felt like I should continue with my festive holiday attire, for the party.  I selected my red plaid button-down first, and made the rest of the outfit to go along with it.

Tights: Tag // Boots: Tretorn at Little Burgundy // 

Two things I love:
1. Wearing summer clothes in winter
2. Mixing patterns

This outfit just seemed fun to me. Wearing a dress to a friendly gathering is sometimes frowned upon for being too dressy.  I think I managed to dress it down with the playful tying up of my plaid top. 

Headband: Claire's // 

Oh bows, how I love thee.

I'm enjoying my snow-filled holidays more than ever :)  I hope that you are too.

♥ Meg xoxo


Blueprints for Building Better Girls

by Elissa Schappell

I took my outfit picture for this book in front of a construction site.  I know, I know, I am so funny and creative.  I mean, BUILDING better girls?  Amazing.  And M says that I am not the funny one ;)

"My mom is right in this, appearance is everything, and appearing to have no one is like swimming alone in the middle of the ocean with a flesh wound."

Schappell tells the stories of a cast of girls and women, at different points in their lives.  At first it seems like a collection of separate stories; later these darkly funny stories weave into each other's.

The stories begin with a teenage girl who was given a bad reputation at high school, because she wore a body suit with a short skirt. The next details the relationship between a husband and wife, and their struggle to get pregnant. Another story involves a college student, who shares her horrible secret with her aged grandfather. Still another story deals with the relationship between mothers watching their daughters at the playground.

The narratives are very character-driven and filled with emotional details. These women are all flawed in some way.  They have been hurt, somehow, and have learned to deal with their hurt in different ways. They struggle with stereotypes and identities as sexual beings, mothers, friends, daughters and wives.

One of my friends, L, was reading this book in the summer and told me that it was boring.  I thought that I would given it a chance.  I really liked the stories of these girls and women. Their stories made me think about the pressures put on women - such as the need to mother and the need to work outside the home. I thought about how women could be very mean to each other, catty and gossipy. I think that some women, myself included at times, need to remember to love each other, respect each other's differences, and to think about their entire story before judging them.

♥ Meg xoxo


White Christmas!

SNOW !  When anyone asked me what I wanted for my birthday or for Christmas, I told them "SNOW".   It came a few days late, but I got my wish.  I am the happiest girl in the world.

Dude, where's my car? haha. 
My little car was a warrior in the blizzard.  Two words: snow tires.

Coat: National Sports // Snowpants: Tag // Shovel: Canadian Tire //
A Purolator truck got stuck on my street this morning. I helped by shoveling a path in the street in front of my house.

Christmas decorations.
I hope that you had a lovely Christmas with friends and family. I sure did.  :) I'm continuing my holiday celebrations today with more friends and family who live far away, who I haven't seen in months.  So happy.

♥ Meg xoxo


Beach in December

I decided to wear red and green outfits for the entire last week of school. I mean, I like a good spirit day - why not make it a week?

I'm wishing my hardest for snow on Christmas. But I mean, short sleeves at the beach is always lovely. :) 

Shirt: Alfred Sung at Zeller's // Sweater: Target + crafted // Kilt: thrifted //

This kilt was love at first find at the thrift shop.  I found it on Black Friday during a half-off promotion for all things red or green.  Sweet sale, right?  Right. A lot of colleagues asked me if I bought it at Anthropologie !

Kilt: thrifted // Tights: Tag // Flats: Zeller's //

I really like the tartan on this kilt.  I don't know much about kilts... except that this pattern is waaaay prettier than my high school kilt, and the length is waaaay longer.  haha.

Shirt: Alfred Sung at Zeller's // Sweater: Target + crafted with a thrifted sweater // Purse: Target //

This yellow sweater somehow got snagged on something in my drawer and got a hole in it.  I used a thrifted sweater, cut it into a heart shape, and patched the hole. I decided the one heart was lonely, so I added a few more.  I think it's lovely.

This gold purse is my new fave.  I scored it for $3.75.  I was like "it's practically free; I have to buy it."  My four year old cousin asked me if she could borrow it. . . Compliment? Obviously. 

♥ Meg xoxo


Construction site

I really like construction sites. I always wonder what is going to be built there. All I could think of when I saw this construction site was that it looked like a really big sandbox.  I mean, that tractor-thingy?  Very sandboxesque.  haha. 

Coat: Costa Blanca // Scarf: handmade by Mum //

I love this coat because of its colour. I really wanted a red coat for a long time before I got this one. And I lined up FOREVER to get it, because it was half off.  That was a few years ago.  After I took this picture, I started thinking I may need a new coat... with some sort of defined waist. Maybe with a belt or sash? Although, it does look sort of peplum-y in this pic.  . .

Shirt: Winner's // Skirt: Urban Outfitters // Tights: Joe Fresh //

Here we find stripes and polka dots together again.  I mean, they're basically neutrals.  This skirt made me think of Robert Munsch's The Paper Bag Princess when I bought it.  In a way, I think it empowers me when I wear it.  I can channel Elizabeth...

Heels: Burlington Coat Factory // 

I think that beige heels are meant to be worn with bare legs, in order to make the legs look longer. Here I paired them with dark tights to accentuate the tights. Because they have polka dots. And I love polka dots.

Counting down til Christmas! Let the red and green outfits begin. 
♥ Meg xoxo


Bottle Rocket Hearts

by Zoe Whittall

"Her pessimism and anxiety had been like a cheese-grater across our hopeful faces."

Bottle Rocket Hearts details the coming of age story of an eighteen-year old spunky Montrealer named Eve, in the mid 1990s.  In the beginning of the novel, Eve leaves her parents' house in the suburbs of Dorval to move downtown with two roommates: Seven and Rachel.  With the acceptance of her housemates and her knowledge gained from Women's Studies at school, Eve comes to terms with her sexuality and comes out. Through Eve, the reader is introduced to Montréal's queer community with wide-eyed naiveté.  

The story is set in reality; Québec is facing a referedum, and queers are rioting against assimilation.  In this present, Even struggles with her non-monogamous relationship with the wild and opiniated Della. She is forced to face the death of her friends, due to homophobia.  She goes to riots, runs from the police, and learns to dull the pain with illegal drugs. 

I found this story to be fascinating. The story's setting is so real that I could actually picture Eve biking down Ste-Catherine St with her spray painted silver Docs. As well, the issues in the story are real.  Whittall's word choice is spot-on; she has this way of making extremely poetic language work in prose.  An excellent and thought-provoking read.

♥ Meg xoxo

One Hundred Names

by Cecelia Ahern

I love Ahern's books. There's something special about them. Erin and I decided that it has to do with the fact that there is always a little romance and a little something magical.  I really liked some of Ahern's previous novels, like Where Rainbows End, PS,I Love You, and The Time of My Life.

"Should she know what the names meant?  Had she and Constance had a conversation about it before?  Was there a hidden message?"

Kitty Logan is a journalist for a well-respected magazine, created and edited by her friend and mentor Constance Dubois.  She is a well-respected journalist, too, until she wrongly exposes a man and ruins her career.  At the same time, her long-time friend Constance dies of cancer and leaves her with the research for her last story: a list of 100 names.

Kitty has the difficult job of meeting with, and interviewing, one hundred strangers on a list. She knows nothing else about the people except for their names. At first, Kitty tries to figure out the theme of the list, asking herself "What do all of these people have in common?".  None of them know why they are on the list, and what they did to deserve a spot on it. By meeting all of the people on the list, Kitty begins to remember why she became a journalist in the first place: to hear peoples' stories. 

Ahern draws upon ideas from P.S., I love you, in this story; it seems like Constance is guiding Kitty after she dies, just like Gerry does for Holly.  I liked how Ahern was able to convey emotion in this novel; I really felt for Kitty, as well as the other characters in the story. 

I definitely recommend this read, if you like Ahern. It was written in her clever, funny, and highly effective style of writing that will have you laughing, crying, and coming back for more. 

♥ Meg xoxo


I love my city

Here's a piece of a conversation that I had the other morning, with a Grade 8 student:

Student: Mlle, I like that you wear weird outfits like sweaters with skirts.
Me: . . . thanks... I think? 

Sweater: H&M // Skirt: Costa Blanca // 

Is sweater + skirt a weird combo?  I didn't think so.  I mean, it's cozy sweater weather for sure. And I love skirts. So... it's definitely not weird, in my opinion.

Tights: McGregor Sock Shop //

It's hard to tell, but these heels are navy.  And plaid. Wait for it . . .

Heels: Aldo //

I think that the plaid makes them interesting. Oh, and the mud.  haha. I got a little muddy while posing on the side of the escarpment.

Nail polish: Nicole by OPI in Shoot for the Maroon // Earrings: Borrowed from Mum //

I would say that this polish and my tights are maroon. Apparently, this season, they are "oxblood".  I like renaming colours and all, but oxblood seems a little but graphic if you ask me.  As for the earrings, they match the shoes! I mean, not when you put them next to each other... but earrings and shoes are not found next to each other in their natural habitats.  

All I needed was a footrest. 

A lot of people *heart* other people's cities. But I really like my own.
♥ Meg xoxo
PS Book review to come... I've been très busy Christmas shopping.


Let it snow!

Woo hoo...  It finally snowed. I was thrilled. Not everyone shared my joy. (Especially not M, hater of all things cold weather related.)

Coat: Costa Blanca // Jeans: Winner's // Boots: Tretorn at Little Burgundy //

In fact, I was so thrilled that I made footprints around the parking lot with A, and didn't take a picture of the rest of my outfit. Oops.

It rained a little while after this, and rained some more today. I was sad to see the snow go -- I didn't even get to go tobogganing. Next snowfall, my toboggan and I have a date.

♥ Meg xoxo


Birds and Pockets

I woke up singing T Swift.  A random line from her song Holy Ground was playing in my head - "I was spinning like a girl in a brand new dress, we had this big wide city all to ourselves". I decided that I needed to wear a spinny dress.  You know... a dress that you can spin around in. 

Dress: Anthropologie // Shirt: H&M //

So, as you can see... this is a strapless dress that may be labelled by most as a "summer dress." Add a long-sleeved shirt underneath, and voilà: ready to wear in the fall.

colourful birdies.

I like this dress because it is flowy yet structured. It has a pretty pattern and pockets. It is an appropriate length for someone medium-sized height, like myself. 

Tights: Target // Shoes: Zeller's //
This cute little motel is right in the middle of a downtown area. It's adorable on the outside. I really like all of the different fonts in their sign.  

Aside: Is that how you spell "kitchenette"? I think it only has one "n". Adorable, nonetheless. 

♥ Meg xoxo



by Amy Reed

"The five of us are some of the people who have been here the longest. Almost everyone who was here on my first day is gone..."

Clean chronicles the stories of five teenagers and their stay at a drug rehabilitation centre. Each one of them take turns narrating his or her own story. They come to the realization that, although they have different reasons for being addicts, they all share the desire to become sober.

Christopher is a meth addict who worries a lot about sinning and going to hell. Olivia has an eating disorder, an addiction to diet pills, and an obsession with being perfect. Jason is an alcoholic who wants to impress his father by being tough and manly. Kelly is a cocaine addict, who comes from an affluent family. Eva is a painkiller and marijuana addict, who turned to drugs when her mother died.

Reed does a good job making her characters seem real.  It was easy for me, as the reader, to be sympathetic to her characters and their motivations.  All I wanted, by the end of the story, was for each member of this distorted and intensified Breakfast Club to be okay.

♥ Meg xoxo


Dusk magic

This street comes to an end at this nice looking, shiny diamond and a corn field. It's probably creepy at night time, but I liked it at dusk. 

Top and scarf: thrifted // Skirt: Tommy (outlet) // Tights: Sears //
Not much in this outfit seems to match, on paper. Navy sweater, brown skirt, maroon tights, yellow scarf, and gold heels.  In action, though, they all sort of come together.  The skirt isn't really brown.  It's this magical tweed that has threads of, you guessed it: navy, maroon, and golden yellow. 

Heels: Call it Spring //
Glitter is spectacular. It's one of my favourite craft supplies. Add it to shoes and I'm in heaven. Also, witness the tweed magic. 


When I uploaded my photos, one of them turned out like this.  Very odd, oui? It reminded me of something that might happen on an old-school film camera.

Where did she go?

Enjoy those "magic" dusk hours; they are beautiful and fleeting. 
♥ Meg xoxo


White is for Witching

By Helen Oyeyemi

This book was strange and confusing... and not really what I thought it was going to be. But I really liked it.

"Miranda can't come in today Miranda has a condition called pica she has eaten a great deal of chalk."

Miranda Silver is a sixteen year old girl who lives in Dover with her twin brother and their father.  She goes to Cambridge and has a beautiful girlfriend. She is plagued and tormented with a rare eating disorder called pica. 

Miranda eats chalk and other non-edible things instead of food.  This condition is not so rare in the Silver family; her mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother also suffered from it.  Her condition links Miranda to her deceased family members, who reside in her house and in herself.  At times she becomes them, and at other times it seems that everyone else is becoming Miranda.  She slips in and out of reality, taking the reader with her on her journey.  

Oyeyemi is spectacular. She switches perspectives between Miranda, Eliot (her twin), Ore (her girlfriend), and the house.  These switches are so flawless that they sometimes happened in the middle of sentence, with each storyteller sharing a word or two. All things supernatural and magical are believable in this story. I really enjoyed Oyeyemi's style of writing... I believed every character and his or her story, even it conflicted with another's. 

♥ Meg xoxo


Diner loving and plaid PANTS

Everyone was shocked and appalled; I wore pants to work.  I mean, it is autumn - the leaves have fallen, the clocks have changed, and the seasonal restaurants have closed. I love the look of this diner; it's like a 50s throwback with black and white tiled floors.

Pants: H&M // Shirt: Buffalo //

I've had these pants for some years and every time I wear them, someone comments on them.  I thought that they'd be suitable again, because patterned pants seem to be très chic this season.

Heels: Nine West //

Hello, pointy-toed heels. These shoes are old faithfuls. They have seen their share of sidewalks, dance floor, and stairs. I feel like wearing them with socks made them fall-friendly.

Peeling paint...

Old school Pepsi case...

Gasp* This diner used to be red. I think that I might like it better in red... but then it wouldn't have matched my outfit. . . 

♥ Meg xoxo


Branching out...

This past weekend M and I went on a hike at a nearby conservation area.  The forest was beautiful in its autumn colours. Unfortunately, I didn't bring a book along with me. . .

Jacket: Old Navy // Hoodie and long shirt: Forever XXI // Tights: TAG // Finger-less gloves: crocheted by Mum //

My helpful photographer instructed me to "look like you're looking!".  Confused, I pulled out this pose:

Helpful M even suggested that I should write his idea on the blog. Ta da. :P

my shoes: Winner's // M's: Nike? 

Here are some pretty shots of the forest :)

A babbling brook. 

I like these declarations of love on the trees. 

I loved the fresh air, the crunchy leaves, and my rosy red cheeks.  
♥ Meg xoxo



by Wendy Phillips

I read another novel in verse.

There. I needed to get that off my chest straight away.  I just loved the last one so much that I needed to read another.

"They bleed all over the page/ but she sees ink/ nudges it into startling shape / with a red pen"

Phillips writes about four high school students and their troubled lives.  The lives of Tricia, Natalie, Miguel and Kyle unfold through the poetry they write both for pleasure and for their English class.  Their tortured pasts and conflicted presents are vivid and realistic.  Their poems are interspersed with their teacher's descriptive feedback and with her concerned correspondence with the guidance department and the principal.

I was quite taken by the book.  I found myself wondering about the teenagers who I see hanging around the school near my house, and about the rest of their stories that happen outside of school. 

Don't worry, I'll be going back to prose now, instead of poetry.  I mean, it's in the title after all. 

♥ Meg xoxo


Good day sunshine

New things I love include: pleated skirts, lace, and Peter Pan collars. This little number, alone on the sale rack, spoke to me; it had all of my new loves in one.

Dress: Monteau LA at Winner's // Tights: Mexx outlet //

I paired this dress with leggings and boots, because it is fall and I was going to work.  On a breezy day during summer hols, I might wear it with knee socks and saddle shoes. It's just too short for school.

Off to Neverland ! 

Peter Pan collars have swept the Blogosphere. I like them because they are so cute and feminine. I thought this to myself and then wondered "why they are called 'Peter Pan' collars anyways?". Apparently, a collar much like this one was worn by Maude Adams in her portrayal of Peter in the 1905 Broadway production.

Boots: Charlotte Russe // 

I love these boots. They were one of the spoils from the road trip weekend with Mum :)

"Good day sunshine" : the Beatles

I heard the fab four singing on the radio, and couldn't get them out of my head all day. It was a good day, sunshine.

♥ Meg xoxo


The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus

A novel about Marriage, Motherhood and Mayhem.
By Sonya Sones

This book made me smile, laugh out loud, and tear up. It was witty and very self-aware. It was fresh and different.

"which is when/ I notice that my/ frighteningly King-Kongish posture/ has snuck right back up on me .../ Is this how it all began for her?/ Twenty years from now, am I going to be/ the hunchback of Neiman Marcus?" 

This novel is about an author in the middle of her life. Her seventeen-year-old daughter is about to leave for college 3000 miles away. Her aged mother is sick, and delusional. Her husband is keeping a secret from her about something. Her editor is constantly pestering her to meet her deadline for her book.  The author is plagued by hot flashes and mood swings; she bursts into tears when she sees her neighbour's new daughter and when her husband buys her a new kitten.
When I read the summary of this story, it seemed very common to me. I work with a lot of women, and hear many stories which could be found in the pages of this book. 

This book is different though; it is written completely in verse. It is a series of poems with delightful titles and pleasing meter. Sones chooses each word with care, so that a simple collection of words becomes extremely meaningful to the reader. Sones writes about topics that many women deal with everyday, making her struggles and joys relatable. 

I'll be looking up her other titles in the future. I hope that they are as enjoyable to read as this one. 
♥ Meg xoxo