Femme Fatales!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Candles Candles Everywhere




If you're like me and you love to burn candles, then you search for something long lasting with a magnificent fragrance.

I've been burning candles for many years for the simple fact that I LOVE to! Plus I like the way they make my house smell, but it's sometimes hard to find candles that really last and throw their fragrance throughout the whole house. Most candles you can pick up on their scents if you're hovering a few mere inches from it, but lets face it, nobody likes to be a creeper and constantly hover not to mention it's a safety issue and bringing your candle with you everywhere you go throughout the house is just plain silly.

I was out grocery shopping the other day at our Great Canadian Superstore here in BC, it's huge! I'm talking it has everything you could ever need in there. From your regular grocery store plus an electronic department, a clothing department, a photography center, a reading place and oodles more. Naturally I found my way through the aisles looking for everything but my groceries and I came upon some Presidents Choice candles. First of all I didn't know they sold candles and secondly I had never bought soy candles before, but what the hey! They ended up in my cart anyway, much to my husbands dismay. Candles are slowly taking over our house.

In this particular Destinations line they have about four or five different scents. Each one is supposed to be from a certain destinations place but only two caught my fancy.

San Tropez

and Maui

San Tropez reminds me of a sweet peach with a very faint floral scent thrown in to enlighten your senses. It was the first one I burnt when I got home, but Maui has kinda grown on me since.
Maui smells like pineapples and papaya, literally!
These are soy blend wax candles that fill the whole house with their fragrance upon ten minutes of burning. At $6.99 each I'm not sorry I spent the money.
The Destinations candles also come in votives, tea lights and pillars, plus I saw some scented oil sticks if that's more up your alley.


Here's a few fun facts about soy candles:

Soy candles are cheap
- Beeswax is a great natural alternative to paraffin, but to get the same results as a soy-based candle, it is very expensive. Soy wax is a new alternative to paraffin wax that is cost effective. Soy wax is also made from a renewable source.

Soy wax is all-natural - Soy wax is a favorite of environmentally conscious people because it is not made from petroleum, like paraffin candles. Burning of soy candles does not increase the CO2 level in the atmosphere.

Soy candles last longer - They can last up to 50% longer than paraffin candles.

Wax spills are easy to clean - It's very difficult to remove paraffin wax from furniture or textiles. Soy wax spills can easily be cleaned up with hot soapy water.

Soy candles produce less soot - Soot should be avoided because it is very unhealthy and can eventually coat furniture and walls. Soy candles produce about 90% less soot that paraffin candles.

Scented soy candles distribute more flavour - The incorporation of soybean oil lowers the melting point of the candle, which translates into cooler burning candles and faster scent dispersion. The lower melting point of soy wax results in a larger size of the liquid wax pool around the candle wick. It is from this liquid wax pool that the essential oils evaporate into the atmosphere.

Don't forget though, NEVER leave your candles unattended and keep them out of reach of children!

What are some amazing candles you can recommend for me? I would love to try them out!

Follow the links below for some more amazing soy candles.

www.naturasoy.com
www.luminessentcandles.com/soycandles/
www.sequimmarket.com

Monday, April 26, 2010

Chubby Buddy

We are bombarded everyday with beauty contests like Miss Universe and shows like Extreme Makeover, as well as People Magazine featuring the most beautiful people in the world and unatainable ideolized billboard images of the female body, all trying to answer the question "What is beauty?" I want to free myself and the next generation from beauty stereotypes.
REAL beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colors and best of all it comes from within!

It's so hard to feel beautiful when we have to always compete with billboards and magazines displaying images of models who are no bigger than a size 2. Is this what kids have to look up to? Shame on society!

Recently Kirstie Alley launched her Organic Liaison program after stepping aside from Jenny Craig when she had put the weight back on. She's also known around the world for her A&E reality series Kristie Alley's Big Life, where she trains alongside her "Chubby Buddy" to lose weight and eat right.

I'm taking it upon myself to get a clue and find my own Chubby Buddy.
I know I can afford to lose a few pounds, but it's more than just that.
Motivation is hard to find, but with a Buddy who can push you up when you're feeling down, and encourage you to eat the right things, the better things your body needs as well as someone who can help you turn from temptation and just be there for you, well, how can you say no to that?

It would be next to impossible to have my Chubby Buddy live with me as we're doing it across country. I'm on the West side, and she's on the East side. But if we can do it, so can you.
To ensure our success we've set goals to meet each and every week and as the months progress, so will our goals and at the end of every week we check in with each other to ensure that we've met our goals.

To be fair we started with something as simple as a walk for 45 minutes once a week. It may not seem like much but actually doing it is the real goal. Eventually once a week will get bumped up to two and then three...etc, etc.
Setting goals helps to ensure success!

We also have a secret word we text each other if we're feeling depressed, having a "fat day" or are tempted into something sinfully delicious, don't forget we're not eliminating anything from our diets, but simply cutting back.The whole point of our Chubby Buddy system isn't to lose weight and get skinny, but to get fit and healthy. Skinny happens along the way, we're hoping.

To everybody out there who is interested in something like this I say: "You can do it if you put your mind to it!!"

Comment below and lets keep in touch. We'll keep each other motivated, happy and sane!!
If you have any tips, tricks or ideas, please share!
Also, be sure to keep checking back to this blog as I will be posting tips, tricks and recipes myself.
Stay fit and healthy my blogger friends! :)



XoXo,

Zxen

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Big Girl


I went to the local Library around my neighborhood being an avid reader that I am and came upon a new release, Big Girl, by Danielle Steel.
Being a "big girl" myself I picked it up assuming I already knew what it was about, and to my hearts content after reading the synopsis on the sleeve, I was right.
Finally!
A book about a "bigger" heroin.
A super sexy blue eyed blond "big girl" I created in my head to match the description in the book, despite what her narcissistic parents would have her believe.

From the very first page I read I couldn't put it down. My brain wanted more and more and my heart ached for this beautiful creature who was put down from the minute she was born.
Not good enough. Not pretty enough. Too smart. Too fat. Too ugly. How could parents be so cruel?

I'm not ashamed to admit that as I flipped from page to page, the tears flowed down my cheeks.

I've struggled with some of the issues this heroin has gone through myself and her pain mirrored my own.

It's nice to see that someone has finally taken the time and brought us "big girls" out of the shadows and into the spotlight and it's nice to read that even plain Jane's like me can and do get the nice guy in the end. Mind you our state of mind may be irreparably damaged by the years of abuse we endure about our weight, but even so, we are loveable!

I am really impressed with this book, so much so that I'm going to buy it and add it my own personal library at home.

I have to be truthful though, I'm not a big Danielle Steel fan at all! But I felt drawn to this book for some reason as cliche as that sounds.

My only problem with it was the ending. I wanted more out of it and in it!! The book built beautifully to an anticipated orgasmic climax that never came. Though the ending was good, it was simple, and could have been better.

I only hope that Danielle Steel provides us with a sequel, because even us "big girls" deserve a Happily Ever After.



XoXo,

Zxen

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Our Earth, Thy Art In My Mind

Earth Day
I am the Earth,
And the Earth is me.
Each blade of grass,
Each honey tree,
Each bit of mud,
And stick and stone
Is blood and muscle,
Skin and bone.

And just as I
Need every bit
Of me to make
My body fit,
So Earth needs
Grass and stone and tree
And things that grow here
Naturally.

That's why we
Celebrate this day.
That's why across
The world we say:
As long as life,
As dear, as free,
I am the Earth
And the Earth is me.
by: Jane Yolen

As children we don't realize the value of our Earth, except for what we are taught in school, but as we get older the Earth weighs on our conscience more and more, at least it does for me.

I want to be around until I'm too old to walk and I don't want to have to push garbage and debris out of my way with my walker. Nor do I want to have to breath through a mask because our air is so foul. How silly we would all look living our day to day lives in protective suits, yet sadly, that's what it's coming to. I want to know that my children and my children's children can grow up in a world that we and they can help maintain, for the good of the earth.

Follow with me the ten steps below and start to make a difference today!


1. Wash Your Clothes with Cold Water
90% of the energy that is consumed by a washing machine on the warm or hot setting is used in heating up the water temperature before it even goes into the machine. So wash your clothes with cold water.

2. Turn the Water OFF While You are Brushing Your Teeth
Fill up a small glass and rinse your mouth with that. This applies to shaving as well. Partially fill the sink bowl to rinse your razor instead of running the water. Saving water is vital. Saving our water supply even more so.

3. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Compost
Reusing packaging material saves more energy than recycling. By avoiding extra packaging, you save both energy and landfill space. Yard and kitchen waste (leaves/grass/vegetable scraps) are 30% of trash. Reduce this amount by composting. Also be sure to re-use plastic bags, or better yet...refuse plastic bags, when you really don't need them.

4. Dispose of Paint, Chemicals and Oil Properly
Don't put batteries, antifreeze, paint, motor oil or chemicals in the trash. Use proper toxics disposal sites and never buy more than what you need.

5. Sleep Your PC
Don't leave your computer on--put it to sleep. The resultant energy savings can really add up. Plus it will prolong your monitor and CPU's life.

6. Unplug Appliances and Chargers When NOT in Use
It's estimated than an average of 5% of your total household energy use is from appliances and chargers that are plugged in but not being used. Anything that has a little light, or a little digital clock is drawing power. Unplug and save!

7. Bike, use Public Transit or Carpool to Work
One-third of all traffic is commuters. Use alternative transportation when possible. If you must drive, go slower with proper tire inflation. It saves both fuel and tires, and lowers emissions. It also saves lives.

8. Eat Less Meat/Eat More Local and Organic Foods
Feedlots are a major source of organic pollution. Tropical forests are cut to raise beef.

9. Lower Your Thermostat in the Winter/Raise it in the Summer
Wearing a sweater in the winter and short sleeves in the summer saves energy and reduces pollution.

10. Volunteer/Lobby for the Environment
Work locally and globally to save natural places, reduce urban sprawl, lower pollution and prevent the destruction of wilderness areas for timber and oil.

Are you doing your part?


XoXo,
Zxen

Friday, April 16, 2010

New Spa Wisdom

I recently went to the mall around my neighborhood and being a huge fan of The Body Shop and all things that smell good, naturally I was drawn in.
I was shocked that their prices were so low on their products (no complaints from me) and with sales like Buy 1 get 50% off, I was sold!
Of course I had told my husband that I was only going for a few things at the grocery store and yet I somehow mysteriously found myself at the mall, how that happened, he'll never know.
We always say we're going for a few things but you know as well as I do that we ALWAYS come back with something that wasn't on the list, or for those of you who shop without a list somehow or another an extra purchase ends up in your bag. This is me to a tee and for the most part my husband has stopped trying to figure me out. You know as well as I do that men just don't get it. We're drawn to display windows like moths to a sweater, especially when we see 50% off sales, or any sales for that matter. Screw the need factor, it's now a want!

One of the first things I was drawn to was their Lip Balms.
2 for $12.
My lips seem to suffer the most no-matter the time of year and I'm forever buying chap sticks, lip balms, lip butters or anything recomended to soothe sore chapped lips. My problem with most lip products is their waxy residue. I can't stand applying a chap stick and that's all I feel or taste for the rest of the day. I want something that absorbs quickly and leaves no residue. The last thing I want is to kiss my husband and feel like my lips got left on his face.
I was pleasantly surprised that the two lip butters I purchased did exactly what I wanted and my lips have never been healthier. Of course I'm a sucker for scents and who can resist Coconuts and Lemons?

One of their promotions right now is their New Spa Wisdom. Being a Body Shop member I got invited to experience their 4 new limited time beautiful Spa Collections. Polynesia, Africa, Japan and Morocco.
Of course I picked only one and that's Japan, hands down.
It smells wonderful and if I could insert a Scratch'N'Sniff here, I would. Sadly I can't and you'll just have to find your local store and go and try it for yourself.

One of the products I got was the Japan Yuzu and Rice Body Milk. Only $22.
"It helps nourish and hydrate your skin with a light, delicate body moisturizer that absorbs quickly into the skin to leave it feeling soft, smooth and beautifully scented with a delicate floral fragrance."
Lightly spritz your skin with the body milk(yes it's a spritzer bottle for easier application) and gently massage into the skin after a bath or a shower (for best results) to leave skin silky soft and beautifully fragranced. Mmmmm...goodness me!
Don't forget your hands and your neck, they're the first that show signs of aging and you want to maintain them as well as the rest of your body.

Another fabulous product I got and I had to rush home and try it right away was the Japan Adzuki Bean and Rice Washing Grains, also $22. Their promotion is Buy 1 get 1 50% off.

I'm a big believer in exfoliating and I was gauranteed that I could use this scrub daily without it stripping my face of moisture. It's gentle foaming action removes dead skin cells and deeply cleanses to reveal soft, smooth refined skin. Of course having just started using these items it's still too early to reveal what I really think, but for the most part I'm already giving it two thumbs up.
A major factor that I really like is that all their products are inspired by beauty rituals, traditions and ingredients from around the world. A little culture never hurt anyone.

What have you tried from The Body Shop and what are your favorite products? Let me know.
Comment.

XoXo,
Zxen

Monday, April 12, 2010

Happy To Be Me!


So this month brings many promises. April showers bring May flowers. April is the month of birth for a lot of people including myself.

To treat myself I decided to go shopping because what's a birthday without a few treats for yourself?
Since I've been eating healthy again for a few weeks now, I didn't want to blow my healthy ways by gorging on cake or sweets, so rather than food, I turned to clothes.

Normally I hate trying on clothes, as I'm sure most of you do. My problem isn't finding something to try on, but the process of physically trying something on. I know what size I am, and every store has my size in everything BUT my size. They claim it's an XL, but when it doesn't even fit my arm, how the heck is that an XL? Like I need another issue to add to my already delicate state of mind when it comes to my weight. Sheesh!

My other dilemma is that when I'm browsing the racks and the sales-clerk motions me to the racks at the back of the store, insinuating that I'd be more comfortable with the clothes from the PLUS SIZE section, because being bigger than a size 10 is something to abhor, I take offense. The last time I checked I didn't have a third eye growing on my forehead, so what gives?
When will the world realize that being bigger than those non existent sizes of 00 doesn't mean you have to hide us in the back like we're disease infested vermin.
Oh how I long for the day when people will accept us for being who we are!
Say it with me folks, say it loud and say it proud! I am PLUS SIZE!!! And there's nothing wrong with that! As long as your health is in check, you're good to go. I'm a size 18 and my weight has fluctuated up and down from the day I was born, but not once have I had a problem with blood or cholesterol pressure. If I'm ok with me, why the hell aren't you?
Someone wise once stated that men like steak, dogs want bones! I'm a healthy 18+ steak, aged 28 years to perfection. Come and get it folks!!
Friends only, lol.

XoXo,
Zxen

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Hi There!

As of late, after I had to give up my job to move out here in BC, but not to worry I do have another one, I found myself with more time on my hands than I know what to do with. So I've decided to harness all my free time into finding unique and inexpensive tips, tricks and ideas for hair, skin and around the home. And since I love to shop, rest assured that any major SALES I find I'll be blogging about.

I want to take the time and share a wonderful natural hair mask I made for myself at home.
I bought some avocados to try a while ago but I really didn't like the way they tasted, bitter and pukey. My mouth felt dry and tasted as if I'd taken a spoonful of oil. Yuck! So after I brushed my teeth and rinsed my mouth out I didn't want to waste the rest of the avocado, as we all know they're not cheap. So I turned it into a hydrating hair mask, and just my luck because my hair needed it too.

Here's what I used:
1/2 Avocado
2 Tbsp of Olive Oil
1 Tbsp of Honey
Mash avocado and mix all ingredients. Work into hair and let stand for 30 min, covering with plastic bag/shower cap. Shampoo and condition and style as usual.

There are so many other masks out there you can use, even organic ones, but with these three simple ingredients and simple steps I'm already sold.
Remember, less is more!




Check out my Youtube video here for this Yummy Hydrating Hair Mask. I'm sure you'll love it, and your hair will thank you!

video
Don't forget to show my Channel some love as well :)
http://www.youtube.com/user/Zxenarea

Welcome!!


Welcome!
I should have started my first blog with this, but if you've read the first blog I wrote, you'll understand why that wasn't so.
Let me start off by saying a few things about me.
I recently moved to BC, left ALL my family and friends behind in Ontario and just upped and left. Well, ok, it wasn't like that exactly. The hubby got a job promotion and being the loyal wife that I am we made the treck across the Provinces together with our son and our two dogs Oreo and Cookie.
WARNING: Don't take a cross Province trip during the winter, it's brutal! But we did make it in one piece, after many, many heart attacks later.
I've come to the realization that when BC is hit with snow, people haven't a clue how to drive in it. Thank goodness the snowfall here isn't like back home, or I might have to teach these Vancouverlites a thing or two about road safety.
We were all here through the Olympics and honestly I've never been more proud to be Canadian than I am right now! Patriotism is huge out here, and it's part of what made me fall in love with BC. Every corner I turned, someone had our flag waving proudly. Events blocked every major intersection and during the last mens hockey game, not a peep was uttered. The streets were empty, not a body in sight and no traffic. When Crosby got the last goal glee was shouted in unison. What a great game that was! Let's do it again next Olympics boys.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Doggy Business


Ok, coming home to a messy house from my beloved animals was not my idea of fun!
How many times have you come home to your "pets" having done something they know they weren't suppossed to do?
After careful consideration, a river of tears and a rented steam cleaner later I've come to the realization that I'm not so mad at the fact that they destroyed my plants and dragged them from room to room, or the fact that they felt the need to imbed the dirt into every part of my carpet and somehow mysteriously slobber water everywhere so the dirt turned into a muddy mess, but I'm more upset at the fact that they broke my trust.
You work so hard to train your pets and teach them what's acceptable in and outside the house and just when you think they've got it, it all goes to chaos. What gives?
Times like these I need the Dog Whisperer or Brad Pattison on my side, but would I trade them in? Not on your life! Somehow, through the numerous heart spasms and cleaning all the "pet" messes, they've wormed their way into your heart, they're a part of the family.
Remind me of that the next time they muck my house!

XoXo
Zxen