So if you follow us on Instagram you know we recently did the student show case with the Vancouver Burlesque Company. I got to dance with a level 2 group. I was totally out of my element and felt very insecure.
Dancing puts me in a vulnerable position.
1. I’m not a small girl. So I feel like its obvious, me, this giant chick on the stage
2. Being giant, you are gunna see that a) I’m bigger than others, height and weight and b) you will see I’m not a good dancer (especially since I was dancing with former dancers).
3. Others in my dance classes are good dancers. They have danced before and they know what position 1 means.
4. I was told when I was younger, and wanted to join ballet, that I cant be a dancer because I’m to tall (Stupid that the things we are told when we are young sticks with us).
So yah, I’m feeling vulnerable but determined to do it. But this experience got me thinking about my thoughts vs others. What I see is me as an elephant in the room, dancing with cute ballerinas. BUT what others see is me doing well. I got good feedback from my friends. But these crappy feelings of me looking stupid flood other parts of my life too.
For example, at my gym, for the longest time, I always thought I could see my tummy reflecting off the heater that is located on the roof right above me. It literally took me over a year to realize it wasn’t my belly at all, but the big ball I was using making the reflection!
Like what the heck!?
Why? Why do I assume, this big ball is my stomach reflecting? Why do I go to a negative place? Why didn’t see a ball? Why didn’t I see me accomplishing this one work station that I’ve struggled with for so long?
I’m so annoyed with myself when I realized I’ve been doing this. Nals and I have talked about this (a lot). We always remind each other that we are pointing out negative things and will say “that’s not what I see”. As much as I have focused on trying to be body positive, and not negative on myself, I still find I have moments (like mentioned above) where I still beat myself up. I still see negative things.
But here’s what I can do:
1. Listen to the positive feedback
2. Recognize when Im being negative
3. Continue to challenge myself
4. Remember to love myself
5. Celebrate my accomplishments
I know I’m not the only one that goes through this. Please share the ways you challenge your negative self talk and ways you love yourself!!
So I (Kells) sucked it up, put my fears on hold and went to my 20 year grad reunion.
Back ground: I was not one of the “cool” kids. I had many friends and floated from group to group but I never had that crew. I didn’t sit in one spot, or hide out in the back field. I simply survived high school by roaming, moving and saying hi to those that would say hi back. I viewed myself as a band/theater geek. But no one asked me to the prom (however I was more than happy to go with my bestie), I tried to avoid the school bullies and I learned to just laugh at myself (especially before others could laugh at me).
So 20 years has come and gone. (I did go to my 10 year reunion, it was still weird). People still had their clicks but what was neat was at the 10 year reunion, one of the dudes that was always mean to me came up to me and apologized. It was really shocking but very nice of him to do. I totally respect him for that.
I didn’t know who I would see, or what to expect. I went to the reunion (even the 10 year) without the hubs. I tried to say hi to everyone I could, though some did not recognize me and some still snubbed me.
But I wanted to share the things I didn’t expect.
1. A few people told me they had a crush on me. Surprised me as I always had a low view on my looks in high school, so never thought anyone would like me. Plus I was generally a foot taller than most people, which made me stick out, or above the crowd. Also made me self conscious.
2. I heard other people (even those I deemed as cool) talk about trying to survive. One person mentioned staying in their clump, because to them, survival was in numbers.
3. Most people agreed who the school jerk was. He was there too. I didn’t get to talk to him, but if I did, I was gunna tell him he wasn’t nice. Why not? I would want someone to tell me if I were mean to them in high school cuz I would like to apologize. (Not that I expected him to apologize).
4. A couple people thanked me for always being so nice to them. I didn’t realize I had that impact. They even remembered things about me I didn’t! It was so touching.
5. I got this at both my 10 and 20 year: “you’re so pretty now”. Dont say that. It’s mean. This time I responded with, thanks, I think you are trying to be nice, so I will take that as a nice compliment.
6. People said they didn’t remember me until I started talking and laughing and this is what they remember me for. Sad cuz I laugh like a donkey but atleast I was remembered for laughing!!! I will definitely take that.
7. I had fun. Who knew? I laughed so hard, that my abs hurt, even 2 days later. I stayed up way to late and I went to sleep feeling happy.
So why was I so happy? Well I suppose a few reasons...
1. I realized that jerk in high school is still a jerk and that it wasn’t me, it was him.
2. I went in to the reunion hoping to just have fun and not hide. Mission accomplished!
3. I’m happy with my life. I have everything I could ask for. I laugh. I live. I love.
4. It was nice to hear feedback about my high school self that was completely different than what I though I was. Where I saw fluttering from group to group to try to hide/blend, others saw as social. People saw me as kind, laughing and fun. And guess what, I am those things!
I have so many friends that don’t want to do their reunion because high school sucked. But I heard from many of my classmates that it sucked for them too!! Thank goodness high school isn’t the best years of our lives! I want to live my best life now, and feel that I am. I want to encourage you to attend your reunion! Talk to people. Ignore those who still suck and learn that our negative self high school image is not what others have seen!
As you N&Kers know, both K&I are taking burlesque classes through Vancouver Burlesque Company. In fact, 2 each this term! So, this will be K’s 2nd & 3rd performances. And my 3rd & 4th performances.
When I first started burlesque, I was shy about telling people.
I thought I would be judged for the type of dance, or that I would dare to do it because I don’t have a dancer’s body. And culturally speaking, I was taught to be modest. Prancing around in your undergarments is not modest. I’m also too old to take on something like burlesque! And lastly, there are only a handful of visible minorities in burlesque. I definitely felt out-of-place. This translated into me being shy about talking about it.
Holy batman! All these internal battles!
Rectifying internal battles
Type of dance: I try to educate people on the burly history. It’s not just about shaking your tail feathers. This is another way to express how you’re processing society’s zeitgeist. Don’t believe me? Then look at all the sub-genres: nerdlesque, contemporary, chair, etc.
Dancer’s body: Burlesque initially came out because poor folks poked fun at the richie-rich operas/shows. With burlesque, essentially, anything goes. Different bodies, shapes, colours, abilities… it is about you telling your story. How are you interacting with the audience?
Too old: Yes, I’m older than my instructors and classmates. But, the only person who has made me feel ‘too old’ is me. Last showcase, there was a 60+-year-old woman who did a saucy chair solo. She was fantastic!
Modesty: This term means to act demure, and can include dressing in a non-sexually aggressive manner. Is it a vehicle of oppression? Perhaps it is to be deliciously explored in future burlesque?
… I talk about being in burlesque all the time. I’m excited that I can be part of it! I’ve got access with Vancouver Burlesque Company. (Screaming Chicken, K&I are coming for you, soon!) It’s affordable both financially and timewise.
I’m engaging in self-care. I’m getting fitter and honing in on different fitness goals. I get to dress up, make costumes, have fun, learn to move, meet new people, dance with Kells, listen to music, feel inspired, feel empowered, feel confident, have a creative outlet and be around positivity.
I’ve learned that I’m not as klutzy as I thought I was. I’ve got a bit of rhythm. I’ve learned that I can jellybean, plank off of a chair, go from a standing position to the floor then do an inchworm push up in heels… all in rhythm to music!
Performing on stage isn’t for everyone. With VBC, you can actually just take the class without doing the final show. And, last Fall when I took my first class, I didn’t plan on performing. But by the end, I thought: why the frig not?
Being on stage is simply exhilarating. Hearing the audience cheer and whistle. Feeling those positive vibes. Performers excited and buzzing with adrenaline. It is a fabulous feeling!
So, if you are remotely interested in this genre, K&I encourage you to take a class with VBC (or SC). Or in the very least, come and check us out. Tickets available online here.
On our way to Leavenworth, we stopped off for road trip snacks at Target in Bellis Fair. We kept seeing ads for the new Morphe eyeshadow palettes.
Kells & I love makeup, and are pretty well-versed on brands. But we hadn’t heard of Morphe. And we were defo intrigued. Then Nals spotted one of the cashiers sporting mesmerizing coral-pink salmon-berry eye makeup. After almost-creep-status staring, Nals complimented her. She beamed and whispered, with the confidence of a makeup seductress, “Morphe*”.
Of course we booted off to Ulta Beauty. And right up front, with a resplendant shining halo, was the Morphe display.
What’s the deal with Morphe?
Morphe is a company featuring professional-grade products at an affordable price. It came to Ulta Beauty in October 2017. (Unfortunately, Ulta is not in Canada.) But a year later, Morphe made its debut in Canada at Sephora.
Why welcome to Canadian soil, Morphe.
So did we get some?
Hells yeah we did! Kells got a deliciously rich red matte lippie.
I picked up a concealer. And, I got Boss Mood which features metallics and mattes in purps, berries and greens. Having seen our previous pictures, in case you didn’t pick up on it: I looooove colour. When not at work, I am pretty adventurous with eyeshadow application.
Cutie T is building her eye makeup collection and got a neutral nude palette plus a Morphe eyeshadow primer.
Ulta’s atmosphere is between that of a Sephora and a drugstore, but closer to latter. Testers were available but MUAs, mirrors, tissues, applicators were in short supply. I think the concealer was not the best match for me. But it’ll do for now.
Application & Wear
The actual product was easy to apply and blend. Eyeshadow needs to be built up to get the desired effect. I find that because of my darker skin tone, most shadows/liners need to be layered on. And there’s some fallout especially with the Morphe glitters.
I’m glad I got the 24USD eye palette. It’s definitely worth it! Boss Mood is good for folks who are adventurous. But palette still contains some neutrals and basics, too. I was also eyeing the full Fall into Frost and a mini neon palette.
Morphe has a good selection of small, full and quad eye palettes. They’ve also got singles. They have a fairly good selection of concealers for dark and porcelain skin tones.
What are you waiting for? Go forth and explore Morphe, N&Kers!
Footnotes: The cashier pronounced “Morphe” as more-fee (as in morphine) but we think it’s pronounced morfh (as in the caterpillar will morphe into a butterfly). Interestingly, one of the staffers at Leavenworth Village Inn pronounced the word “chic” as chick, rather than French way sheek. American adorableness!
So if you had read our other posts, Nals and I are working on having a healthy lifestyle. For me, eating is a big part of this. I like a good salad, but I also like a good cookie. But I don’t like a diet. I never have, never will and will probably fail if I try (I know this is not a good positive outlook, but it’t a realistic one).
Nals and I have different bodies, tastes and lives. Which also means, we have different eating habits (unless it comes to good food, we both love good food!). We have different jobs and different day to day activities, so we both eat different. But we both try to eat well (and try to limit our cookie intake).
For me, I have a busy job, that keeps me on my feet, and out of the office, away from the work kitchen, and close to fast food. For years I struggled with bringing a lunch to work, then, bringing a lunch but not being able to get to my lunch in the work fridge, which resulted in my eating out. And generally, this was not a healthy option.
A few years ago, my good friend’s (my fbff as I call her), mom introduced me and my hubs to her business, Herbalife. First of all, her mom is in amazing shape and looks fantastic, which I thought, well there’s no way a shake is going to make me look that good! BUT after a while, her mom convinced me and my hubs to try it.
First impressions were that it was not that good!Haha. Here’s why, I have tried other protein drinks in the past, and they were super sweet, which I got used to. Herbalife isn’t that weird fake sweet. So it took some getting used to. (Now I love it and when I do have another protein I find them gross, way to sweet). Friend’s mom (let’s just call her MomD) gave us a plan to follow. It went like this:
Wake up, shake up (aka, have a shake for breaky, make it how you want it)
Have a snack mid morning (yogurt, apple and nut butter, whatever, just make it a healthy snack).
Shaky Shaky! (have a shake for lunch). This was great for me, fast and easy and not fast food! Plus I could have it on the go. Worked well for my work schedule.
Snack it up, have another healthy snack in the afternoon. (carrots, humus, whatever, just try to stay away from the cookie jar).
Have a healthy dinner.
Easy peasy really! I’ve talked about this before, I don’t do meal prep well. And I have failed many times at it. This makes it so easy, and my prep is done. All I have to do is choose what I want to add to my shake, berries, OJ, peanut butter…not hard choices if you ask me.
Fast forward, in the first 3 months, I did awesome and lost a lot of weight and felt great, I also got in to a car accident that left me needing back surgery which completely derailed me.
Faster forward, I’m herbalifing daily. I have fine tuned the process and found my fave ways to do my shakes. I’m back on track to losing the weight I gained after my accident. But most importantly, I have gotten back to a healthy lifestyle. Would I suggest herbalife, heck yah! Do I know it works, yes, as long as you do it. Do I think we should all do it, no. It’s not for everyone. How will you know if it is for you? Try it for a month, or 2 and see if you like it. You never know, it may just change your life.
Oh and if you want to know what I use, here yah go:
Formula 1 (I prefer the vanilla flavor cuz I can mix more with it)
Personalize Protein powder (I add 2tbls to my Formula 1, there’s a way to see how much you need to add, a consultant can help you with that).
Herbal Aloe Concentrate (Mango and Cranberry) (these are prefect to add to water for some flavor or to mix with the Tea
Oh! And one more thing, the cost. At first I was thinking it was expensive. BUT when I broke it down, I was not spending any more money than what I would normally spend on groceries. I found that 1 carton of formula 1 and protein powder lasted me one month. Herbalife also offers a 3 day trial pack that includes the cookies and cream and vanilla formula 1 and the total control.
Just so you all know, I don’t sell Herbalife. I only buy it for myself. Yes, I could be a consultant if I wanted to, but unfortunately, I don’t have the time in my busy schedule to dedicate the time to building customers. However, I do know people that sell it and would be happy to connect you with them. If you want to check it out, you can click HERE
I can also help you connect with someone if you are interested in trying Herbalife.
Do you have a good food routine? Please share it with us, we would love to hear what you do!
Small world! Miss Kells & Miss Balm work out at the same gym. One day, they got to talking. And, one thing led to another. So here we are: seeing if Pure Pit Balm’s assertion that “it’s da bomb”, is fo realz.
Pure Pit Balm is a natural deodorant for underarms.
What is a natural deodorant?
“Natural” deodorants can be made at home. They are typically a mixture of emollients & baking soda… plus maybe some essential oil for scent. The general idea is that they’re made from ingredients you have in your pantry.
Why mess with a good thing?
I’ve got an antiperspirant that works. So why change?
There are notions that antiperspirants can contribute to the development of brain diseases in older age☆. Apparently this has not been replicated in recent studies. But it got me to thinking about slapping random things on to my skin.
I work at a scent-sensitive location. And of course Mr. Nals (the ginger) is scent-sensitive°. So this made me think of crap that we randomly inhale – chemicals galore in perfume, lotions, cleaners, soaps, fresheners.
Antiperspirants make my pits ashy gray. When I’ve tried to go without, my pits clear up*. This is just for esthetics but I’m not a big fan.
I ‘ v e t r i e d ! But it gets real stanky at certain times. So, I’ve purchased commercially-made “natural” deodorants, crystals, rubbing alcohol, witch hazel and plain coconut oil. These irritated or cut the skin, dried it out, required frequent reapplication, stained my clothes and were ineffective.
So getting back to the belle of the ball…
Pure Pit Balm is made with shea butter, coconut oil, non-aluminum baking soda +/- essential oil for scent. Kells is allergic to shea butter and couldn’t participate in the review.
My concerns were that I’ve used natural deodorants before, with minimal positive effect. But Miss Pure Pit Balm perservered and supplied 2 complimentary jars – Sensitive (unscented, less potent) and Lavendar (more potent).
I first tried Sensitive. Application: After showering, I applied a pea-sized amount to each dry pit. I let my body heat melt and absorb the product. Then I got dressed. Effects: It actually worked great! There was no irritation and no stink! Now remember: it’s not an antiperspirant. So I still got swamp pits. (Translation: more laundry for me.) That was ok because it meant I wasn’t putting crap on my skin. And, my skin looks vibrant, healthy with no bloody ingrowns!
I’ve used it daily for >1 month. At the end of the day, or after exertion, I occasionally smelled an earthy alkaline odour. I think this was the result of an intense love affair betwixt my sweat and baking soda. So if I felt like I was getting sweaty, I’d wipe & air dem pits out. This seemed to mitigate the odour.
The product comes in a little glass jar (2.5 ounces, 74mL). With typical use, it should last 3 months. You can choose scents: Grapefruit, Lemongrass, Lavender or unscented Sensitive. Sensitive contains less baking soda so it was easier to smother on than Lavendar. Oh but la Lavendar smelled divine. As it was full-strength, my sensitive skin was physically irritated because I rubbed it in too much. This irritation was only intermittent, mild & always went away after a minute. Miss Pure Pit Balm suggested I stick with Sensitive, and to not use after hair removal.^
There’s an informational brochure, details on jar labels and a fabulous website.
Nals would recommend Pure Pit Balm. In the very least, you should try it out just to give your pits a break from excess chemicals. Plus, you’d be supporting a small local (Canadian) business!
Footnotes ☆refer to this article. °Both my mum & I loved scented lotions and potions. We bought vats of it, and madly rolled around in them like pups in a dead skunk carcass. So when I met Mr. Nals & he told me perfumes bother him, I was upset. And when we moved in together, I had to give my carefully curated scents to my mom. Oh Van Cleef & Arpels First, how I still long for you & TommyGirl. *Ashy gray pits are mainly an issue for people of colour. ^(If you’ve paid attention to labels or estheticians before, you know that you actually shouldn’t even gym or sweat or swim within 24 hours of waxing. Let alone, adding deodorant.)
People think of burlesque just as “sexy”. And yes it certainly can be with the stocking peels, gyratin’ and inch worming. But it’s so much more than that! It’s BoPo, sexuality & gender welcoming, theatrical, political, comical, satirical, glamourous, vulnerable… It’s fluid and changes with time.
Burlesque isn’t just one thing, which is why it is captivating.
So I mentioned that I had back surgery and I had to advocate for myself.
This motivated me to start dealing with the health issues I had been ignoring for years. The first one was my tonsils. They were large and in charge. Basically, I had swollen tonsils all day every day. I made an appt with my doctor, showed her that even though I’m not currently sick, they are swollen and asked to see a specialist. I went to see them, again not sick, and they told me that I should have had my tonsils removed years ago. Which I knew already. So I had them removed (had some complications but survived & trust me you don’t want to hear these bloody details). BUT this also meant I needed to follow up with my breasts.
Yuppers, I have breast issues. Mainly, they often hurt.
So here’s what they tell you when you are under 40 and you have breast pain: Don’t worry, it’s not cancer, Cancer doesn’t hurt.
Oh good. So you are under 40. You are in pain. And you don’t need to worry.
NO! So I went to see a specialist. And I was told I have fibrocystic breasts. Oh and if it gets worse come back. But there’s nothing you can do about it. You can try prim rose oil, but I have done researched it and discovered there is no evidence that prim rose oil helps. Some people say it does, some say it doesn’t. But I tried it. Can’t say it’s helped.
Sooo, it got worse. The pain expanded in strength and size. So I tell my doctor, who contacts the specialist that told me to come back if it gets worse. AND…denied. The specialist says no because there’s nothing they can do. Then why did you say come back! Arg.
So since I’m under 40, no other specialist will see me, as I’m too young to have cancer.
Here’s what I experience: consistent breast pain throughout the month. Then the pain increases to extremely sharp jabs of pain once or twice a month. On the one side, it radiates down into my arm pit, sometimes even extends further.
My doctor send me for ultra sounds and a mammogram. Let me tell you, having painful breast tissue squished is not a pleasant feeling. I was also sent for an ultra sound of the uterus and ovaries. Which, did nothing to help me. I was told I don’t have ovarian cysts.
You may be wondering what can be done? My doctor says: Nothing.
Yup, that’s right. There’s no pain management. No cure. And no help for fibrocystic breast pain. You are told either rub prim rose oil on it or deal with it. I actually told my doctor that this was not a good option. Women* are too often told to just deal with it. And I feel like I’m looked at as over reacting. As if radiating breast pain is nothing. It’s not cancer, so suck it up. The Mayo clinic says that severe pain or large painful cysts may warrant treatment. MAY being the key word. Let me tell you, when I compare my symptoms, I fall under the severe pain…and yet, I have been told there is no treatment.
According to one article, fibrocystic breasts aren’t cancer, but they can mean you have an increased risk of getting cancer.
The Mayo clinic says that 1 out of every 2 women can get this. The website Healthline.com says that there’s no treatment, but that advil or Tylenol will help. OR putting a hot or cold compress on your breast can help. Let me tell you, in my opinion, those options don’t work.
Soooo…that’s it. Half of women* are dealing with this breast pain on a daily basis and there is no treatment. WOW. Really? Nothing?
Here’s what I don’t get. According to Advil and Tylenol, you aren’t supposed to take more than so many pills a day and if you exceed that amount you should see a doctor. That doctor says take them anyways, since that’s your only option. Oh by the way, for me, taking this form of pain management doesn’t work.
Here’s my rant: Why does something that effects ½ of the breasts out there not have any treatment? Is it because it’s female*? Is it because it’s a female* issue? Makes you wonder, if this were testicle pain would there be treatment?
So what does this mean for me? Well, I need to get back to my doctor. And do a little more advocating!
Update: Went back to my doctor…I have more to say on this issue…stay tuned!
N&K meant to post this review around Christmas time, but our schedules got a little crazy with work, family time, holiday stuff, New Zealand and the burlesque show. And so here we are…
Sephora‘s Mix & Mingle Lip Set Limited Edition 2018 is a lovely little minx offering lip pencils (but I’m calling them crayons) and glitter glosses. The colours range from light nude to deep browns to coral red and to a dark mythic purple. The crayons are pointed so neither a sharpener nor a liner are needed. Colours are fairly long lastingly rich. Feel is smooth. Look is that of a creamy lipstick. Translucent gloss is not gritty and doesn’t slip off easy. No colour bleeding.
Slight sweet scent & flavour;
Crayons are great for ombre look;
Glosses are also lovely on their own;
Colours are good for Kells & my skin tones. Plus you can customize colours by layering;
Good for day & night looks;
For cleanup, you will need a good makeup remover;
Crayon caps are very short & tend to pop off. So place in a snack sized zippy plastic bag, to avoid colouring the inside of your Calvin Klein handbag (grr);
No colour names so if you like the singles, bring in the empty shell to match up to existing singletons. Or, sets are still available at Sephora Australia, Shape, Poshmark & Amazon.
Other reviews are positive. And, yes we agree that it is definitely worth the buy. In fact, Kells & I have added this set to our quick go-to photoshoot bag!