However, this gym has an awesome workaround. They’ve created a complimentary 30-Minute HIT at Home for members!
Kells has been intermittently hitting it for over a decade. But over the past few years she’s been really consistent.
I tried hitting it for the 2018 fundraiser Kick the F*ck Of Cancer🔗. It was my first time and I felt like puking after. I hadn’t felt that wretched in ages. I thought “Guess this isn’t your jam, missy.”
New Years promo
A couple months ago, K pointed out that there was a special deal. I hemmed and hawed. I thought, let’s just book a trial session… and I was hooked. You get your own gloves and wraps. Makes me feel like I’m a hardcore boxer.
I thought this would be great for a quick workout. In the days I want longer training, I’d have the option to go through 2x.
But believe me, you work your entire body hard. Both Kells & I are hot sweaty messes afterwards.
I still have not gone through the circuit 2x. But one of these days, I will.
And less than 2 months later
I feel stronger, energized, got some skills, endurance (I had to take multiple breaks per station in the beginning).
My waist is more defined. People have told me my shape is changing. I’m not doing it for looks… but it’s nice to get positive feedback.
If you’re up for a challenge, and this looks remotely interesting, call to get your free trial!
Footnotes: ¹Ginger is a new instructor but has been performing for years. She’s an Aussie! ²The second instructor is Portia de Favro🔗. N&K were itching to try one of her classes but she’s only doing intermediate and advanced. After a year of burlesquing, we feel that we’re past beginner stage but not quite intermediate.³Congratulations to Cherry on Top and Ariel Helvetica on bringing 2 new tinies to the GVA!
N&K are again joining burlesque progressive classes leading to Vancouver Burlesque Company‘s 🔗 Student Showcase (adult version of a recital). It’ll be Thursday December 12, 2019 at 9 pm at the Rio Theatre 🔗.
Unfortunately Kells and I couldn’t join the same class this quarter (boo!). Her themes are Mad Scientist (Cleo Victory’s contemporary) and The Circus (Chastity Twist’s chair). They sound like so much fun!
My 2 classes are more classic burlesque styles. My themes are Women*’s Personas: Public & Private Faces (Cherry On Top’s Ingenue level) and Vegas Showgirls (Ariel Helvetica). My classes are a lot of fun, too. We’ve mistreating pink feather boas* and red-and-silver heels.
There are a variety of babes in our classes: some new-to-the-scene and some familiar faces. Very exciting mix!
The show is going to phenomenal folks! So please come to see us and cheer us on. We promise lots of good energy, fun vibes and good times.
*mistreatment as in humping and other fun things. No feather boas were harmed… Yet.
Sept 16th 1963 changed my life. Yes, I know I wasn’t born yet, and my dad was only 10 years old. But this day changed my life. On this day, a man that I will now never meet, was killed while working for the Vancouver Police Department. He was doing traffic control for a BC Lions game and was hit by a driver and killed. Sept 16th 1963 was the day that I would never meet my dad’s dad. I would never have a grandfather because of this day. I would never know what is it like to go fishing with a grandpa, here stories of his time as a police officer, and never know the man that I have only heard few stories of. Sept 16th 1963 took away memories that I would never be able to make.
My dad was 10. I can’t imagine losing a parent at 10. And sadly, he doesn’t talk about his dad. He wasn’t allowed to, his new step father forbid it and completely cut my dad’s family off from seeing their dad’s family. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I met some of my dad’s cousins and aunts. It’s weird hearing stories of a man you never met. It’s weird hearing people say “your grandfather was so fun” or “your grandfather would have loved to meet you”. Your grandfather. I never had a grandfather. I never called anyone grandpa. (Besides my best friends grandpa, who insisted that I call him grandpa too). To this day, I will say “my dad’s dad”. (And no I never called, or referred to my dad’s step dad as grandpa, he was an awful man and we did not have a relationship with him). It’s so crazy that a man, on Sept 16th 1963, killed a man that I really wish I could have met. I have heard he was so tall and loved to laugh. I hear he was the life of the party and was pretty funny. But one man’s poor decisions took that all way. On the last Sunday of every September, there is a police memorial to honor those who have lost their lives serving. Many people, families municipalities, general public and politicians (mainly because they want to be seen on camera) come to honor those who have died. I sit there looking at the families that have lost their mom/wife, or dad/husband, and though I am sad for them, I’m jealous that they got time with their loved one. It’s heartbreaking to see them hear the name of their family member and watch the tears flow. My dad and aunts are sitting there listening for their dad’s name to be called, their hero, who went to work and never came home. It’s such an odd feeling of sadness and almost an emptiness.
And I sit there thinking, Sept 16th 1963. Sept 16th 1963, years before I was born, a day that changed my life. And I think, who is the man that killed my dad’s dad. He never went to jail. He turned himself in the next day. He was never punished (except for a hit and run, not murder). It was assumed he was drinking, but he never admitted to that. Who is this man? Is he still alive? Does he remember Sept 16th 1963? Did he go on living his life? Did he ever want to apologize to my dad’s family? Does he know what he destroyed? Does he care? Does he know the man he killed had kids and a wife? That he had family that loved him? That he would have grandkids that would sit at his memorial and wonder? Does he see the news reports of the memorial and think, I’m the reason you are having this memorial? Does he sit with his grandkids and know that there are grandkids that don’t know their grandfather because of him? I would like to talk to him. Is that weird? Not to get mad at him, or yell at him. But I want to know, does he think of these things? This year, Nals came with me to the memorial. I was with my dad’s younger sister and my mom. I go to support my family and represent the families that are impacted by the deaths of the officers that have lost their lives serving their cities and neighbourhoods. I know it’s important to my dad and his sisters that I help remember their father, a man that I would never meet. What was interesting this year, is that during the procession, when the officers walk out, they usually turn and salute the families, but this year, they walked right on by and turned to salute the Premier JH. (Like I said, they come to be on camera and this year, took away from the families). One more thing I will share…my dad’s dad was killed in an intersection I drive through 2x a day, on my way to and from work. Every day, I pass the spot that someone I would know but never meet, died. The report states the driver carried him 80ft before stopping, getting out of his car to look around, and then drove away. I drive this route. This exact spot where Sept 16th 1963 changed my life. Sept 16th 1963; A day that I won’t ever forget.
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.)