A long hike in the forest. A good laugh with a friend. A fresh mani-pedi. All things you might enjoy from time to time that are good for the soul. Today I want to introduce another soul-lifting treat: flotation therapy. Last week my friend Sophie and I met up at Ottawa’s ISÖ Spa for a complimentary hour in two of the spa’s four float tanks. You strip down to your birthday suit and step into a space-agey pod filled with 1,000 litres of body-temperature salt water. (Warning: there may be naked pictures of Sophie in this next section.)
“When you know better, you do better.”– Maya Angelou • The more we learn about the harmful effects of the ingredients in many of the mainstream products we use every day, the more we look for healthier, greener alternatives. And when it comes to bath and body products, the choices available seem to be growing exponentially. New to the market is Newmarket, Ontario’s Mellow Bath and Body. The company recently sent me two of its all-natural products to try, including this wonderful handmade body scrub (oh if you could smell it!) made with freshly ground, organic and fair trade coffee, organic raw cane sugar and shea butter, and a pepperminty soap made with activated charcoal, and I was curious to learn more about the maker behind it. Here’s my chat with Melody Rattanavong, Mellow Bath and Body’s creator and maker.
Whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day at a posh restaurant with a tall drink of water or at home with your cats and a tall bottle of red, there’s no better day to treat yourself to your heart’s desire. Even if it’s just a little something to say to yourself, “Self, you are loved.” Here are some of my favourite little sumthin’ sumthins for Valentine’s Day — all treats you can pick up last minute or order online for a delightful delivery later in the week. Love is all around but some of the Valentine-themed gifts won’t be around forever.
For Christmas I like to treat my girlfriends to a little luxury — not necessarily something expensive, but something they wouldn’t buy themselves. With that in mind, here’s my gift guide for girlfriends. (And also me: I love everything here for me!) The gifts range from $8 to $105 and are all available online.
I’ve been trying to keep my face to the sun this week but it hasn’t been easy. Jamesy’s been so sick and I’m stressed to the hilt. (It’s been two weeks since his autoimmune disease flared up and it’ll likely be another two before he’s feeling better.) But I’ve got a tonne of things I want to share with you right up until Christmas, so I’m going to try my best to stay in touch. Here’s Benny this afternoon in the blanket of leaves that is our backyard, plus four things we’ve tried this week.
Fall may be the best season for fashion, but winter is definitely IT for beauty. Primping for their debut near you are these party ready polishes from essie‘s Getting Groovy winter collection. London’s swinging ’60s are the inspiration for the six far-out shades. Let’s go-go take a closer look at four (two are so outta sight, I couldn’t get my hands on them yet).
The Taste Box is the latest entry into the Canadian food subscription box market. Yes, another subscription box to discover! How much do we love?! Each month Toronto couple Matt and Jenni curate a unique package of food and drink products around a theme and ship it to your door. The first box shipped this month with an assortment of goodies perfect for celebrating yesterday’s World Pasta Day. Here’s a closer look at the Pasta Is Love box (sent to me to try free of charge) and a couple of notes about what’s coming up next.
My mom is a social butterfly who loves to entertain, whether that’s having a handful of friends over to play Bridge or the entire cast and crew of the latest play she’s stage-managed or produced. There’s always cheese and olives in the fridge and crackers in the cupboard for impromptu guests and extra pillows and blankets if you want to crash on the pull-out couch. (It’ll break your back, but you’re welcome to it.) I stayed with her this weekend when I was in Toronto for a conference and wanted to give her a little something to thank her for having me. What do you give the hostess with the mostest? I knew just the thing! Maybe it’ll be just your thing too.