31 July 2009

S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y SSSSaturday Niiiiigt

Hello, readers.

Yesterday was sort of a blah day. I woke up around noon after having a dream that I got raped, which was quite upsetting. Then I did some dishes that my lovely siblings left and baked cookie brownie bars. It's exactly what it sounds like -- brownie with bits of cookie dough dropped in. Soooo gooood. After that, I watched DVRed episodes of Barefoot Contessa until my mom came home from work and we went to Michaels and I got two canvases and some paint. After a delicious dinner of cheesesteaks, I went to Target, where I got Julie & Julia, two long sleeved shirts for six dollars each and a pair of black leggings.



I actually wrote this entry last night, around 9:30, but then I started feeling weird, so I went to sleep, even with the huge pile of stuff on my bed, which included about three books, a bottle of perfume, a camera, and other random items. Then, I woke up around 1:30am and felt fine, so I went on facebook for a bit, and cleaned my room. So, here I am, finally posting. I've got a dentist appointment today, which I am not looking forward to. After that, I'll be going to my best friend's graduation party. Boring day, but it's better than having to work!

OH, and everyone should go look at Gabby's fabulous DIY. It's so simple and amazing.
Love always,
A.

image courtesy of imgfave

29 July 2009

Six Outfits

Lately, all I can think about is the future. I've been looking up internships and volunteer opportunities and it all just makes me want to get out there and learn.

The inspiration for this week's Six Outfits was interning, haha, like what I would wear if I were an intern who could afford Chanel, lulz


Six Outfits Intern

My new phone finally came!

28 July 2009

Taken with Thought, Still Prone to Care, Makin' Tea in Your Underwear


Just watched
this , can't wait. I love Ellen Page. People tell me I look like her? She's hilarious. Plus, Landon Pigg and Alli Shawkat?! Loveloveloveeee.



I need to make
these NOW. I haven't had good pastry in a while.



Not gonna lie, I am really excited about The Time Traveler's Wife movie. I've never read the book, but the movie looks really sappygood. I cry most times I see the trailer on tv, and I can always use a good cry, ya know?



Can't wait for
this to come back! However, I wonder how it will differ from the seasons on Bravo. We shall see.

So, I think I've decided on what to change my major to...Anthropolgy with a concentration in Visual Anthropology and hopefully a minor in Art History.

Love always,
A.

all images courtesy of imgfave

27 July 2009

I'm Goin' Out with My Boots On *Cue corny country song*

So, I got my new boots! Actually, I got them like a week ago, but I was just too lazy to post a picture :)




Don't mind my pajamas or the bad lighting, you get the idea.

In other news, my cell phone has died :( This is about the fifth env2 I've had since they came out about a year ago. Hopefully, they'll replace it for free even though it's been over a year since I got the first one, eek.


26 July 2009

"You must be the change you wish to see in the world."


Mary (of Hail Mary) has really set a spark in me. She made me realize that although I have helped in small ways to try to end the genocide in Darfur, there is so much more I could be doing. So, I am writing this entry, because I need to. We, as Americans, or Canadians, or the British, or Irish, or whoever we are, need to stop this. We hold the power to be able to change the lives of millions of people who must cope with this horrible tragedy day to day. As people of more developed nations, we pride ourselves in our ability to stand up for the "little guy", but what about Darfur? Why are we not taking action? Why are we sitting by as hundreds of thousands of young girls are raped and killed; men, women, and children alike being starved to death; entire villages being burnt to the ground? We have the power to affect the lives of these people, so why aren't we doing it? If we are not demanding an end to genocide in Darfur, we are allowing our governments to continue being passive about stopping these atrocities. Although some aid is being offered to the people are Darfur, it is not enough. Many people who have been placed in refugee camps die of disease or starvation due to poor living conditions and lack of resources. We need to speak for those that do not have a voice. We need to fight to bring peace to Darfur.




Now, I'm sure you're asking yourself, "What can I do? I'm just one person." The most important thing you can do to help end the genocide in Darfur is to tell everyone you know about it. Mary posted a list of tweets for you to post to your Twitter page, and I'm going to include that list. Even if you don't have a Twitter, go make one RIGHT NOW and tweet these messages.

1) What do 400,000+ people have in common? They were all murdered in the genocide in #Darfur. http://www.standcanada.org/

2) Ignoring the Holocaust didn’t make it go away. Save #Darfur.


3) To call #Darfur anything less than agenocide is ignorant to both the definition of genocide and the suffering of the victims.


4) The most meaningful characters you could type today: Save #Darfur.


5) There are currently 2.5 million refugees because of the genocide in #Darfur. Demand action.


6) Imagine living in a country where a girl is as likely to be sexually assaulted as she is to be able to learn to read. Save #Darfur.


7) Government using helicopters to light their own people on fire? Sounds like a movie, for some it’s reality. Save #Darfur.


8) The Sudanese government hired a private militia just to kill its own people. Save #Darfur.


9) Isn’t nine years of genocide in #Darfur enough? Call 1-800-genocid(e)


10) In #Darfur elders are sent to get water at night because girls are will be raped and men shot. There is no guarantee the elder is safe.


11) The famine in Sudan killed a lot of people, but the genocide it caused killed more. 400,000 more. Save #Darfur.


12) What do we want? A stop to genocide in #Darfur. When do we want it? Nine years ago.


13) Rape and genocide go hand & hand in #Darfur: http://clg.portalxm.com/library/keytext.cfm?keytext_id=141


14) If a government is killing its own people, why on earth would they be allowed to chose where the refugee camp goes? Save #Darfur.


15) Water: we take it for granted, and yet a lack of it has lead to over 400,000 deaths in #Darfur.


16) Start a STAND chapter at your school today! http://www.standcanada.org Save #Darfur.


17) If the UN doesn’t call #Darfur genocide, they don’t have to stop the atrocities. Stop saving money and start saving lives.


18) When you invest in Sudanese oil, you are investing in genocide in #Darfur.


19) What kind of message does it send when we let a government kill its own people based on ethnicity? Save #Darfur.


20) A little apathy never hurt anyone... except the victims of #Darfur.


21) The people of #Darfur worry about famine& AIDS just like other 3rd world countries, but they also have to deal with genocide


22) Several current members of the Sudanese government have been charged with over ten counts of sexual assault. Save the women of #Darfur.

23) Many organizations currently consider #Darfur one of the most dangerous places on the planet.

24) "since the #Darfur Peace Agreement was signed in May 2006, attacks against peacekeepers and humanitarian workers have increased ninefold."

25) re:newint.org "90 per cent of the villages of Darfur’s targeted ethnic groups have been destroyed." Save #Darfur

26) re: newint.org: "3.6 million people are dependent on international humanitarian assistance in #Darfur."

27) re: newint.org: "A third of people [in #Darfur] in need are beyond the reach of humanitarian workers."

28) Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir states ‘there will not be any international military intervention in #Darfur as long as I’m in power’.

29) "The WHO has warned that a major health catastrophe could erupt if the necessary funds and supplies are not made available." Save #Darfur.

30) The ICC has "arrested" Sudanese president Al Bashir, but this is merely symbolic. Firm measures need to be taken. Save #Darfur.

31) "A hybrid UN-AU peacekeeping force is on the ground in #Darfur, although it remains underfunded, understaffed, and vulnerable to attacks."

32) Girls as young as eight are considered at high risk vulnerability levels for sexual assault in #Darfur.

33) People in #Darfur have an average of a three hour each way every night to get highly protected water.

34) Water is so heavily protected in #Darfur that night time trips are necessary to avoid being shot.

35) "For the first time since 2004, global acute malnutrition rates in #Darfur rose above the emergency threshold in 2007."

36) re: Unicef: "As of September 2008, 225 humanitarian vehicles have been hijacked or stolen during the year [in #Darfur]."

37) re: Unicef: “As of September 2008, 144 humanitarian compounds [have been] broken into [in #Darfur.]”

38) Attacks on convoys means that 180,000 people in #Darfur may not receive expected clean water supplies this year

39) How long the genocide in #Darfur has been going on for is disputed, but the fact that 100s of 100,000s have died isn’t.

40) Why should you care abou #Darfur? Why shouldn’t you care about #genocide?

41) Calling #Darfur a genocide is the difference between a UN intervention and political apathy. Call #Darfur what it really is.

42) Aid serves an important role in providing for the people of #Darfur, but it will not effectively address the root causes of the conflict.

43) Because Canada has no colonial ties to Sudan, it is in a prime position to help the people of #Darfur.

44) Because of the horrid conditions in #Darfur and the high rape rate, the infantcide levels have skyrocketted.

45) Sondra was a nine year old girl shot in the back of the neck when she was only two hours away from a refugee camp. Save #Darfur.

46) Machuk is a 12 year old boy who took care of 3 younger sisters. One day in #Darfur his town was lit on fire. He hasnt seen them since.

47) To see the damage done in #Darfur, check out google earth. It will show you what villages have been burned to the ground.

48) in #Darfur theres a religious belief that you cant kill a virgin. Unfortunately for young girls, the "solution" for this is rape.

49) In #Darfur, a girl wil sometimes have to go through a humiliating forced marriage before being raped several times and then shot.

50) Daoud was an elderly woman who was kicked so hard she died. She was trying to get water for her family. Save #Darfur.

51) #Darfur can be hard to understand because it is not a difference of skin colour, but the fact remains that people are still dying.

52) Genocide is the systematic killing of a people. #Darfur is the systematic killing of a people. Call #Darfur genocide.

53) Saving #Darfur will be difficult, but letting an entire type of people die due to apathy is unacceptable.

54) The Holocaust, Rwanda... didn’ we say never again to genocide? Save #Darfur.

55) As long as the genocide in #Darfur continues, it will be one of the biggest broken promises of the Western world.

56) Issa was a thirteen year old girl raped by four different soldiers, two from her own governement.

57) When two Canadian aids workers went missing, the news media mentioned Sudan but not the words genocide or #Darfur. Why the silence?

58) Demand more of your local media; write them and make them pay attention to what is happening in #Darfur.

59) Although Canada isnt a major world power, we are respected internationally for commitments to peacekeeping and human rights. Save #Darfur.

60) “Who the hell cared about Rwanda?” –Romeo Dallaire. Save #Darfur.

61) www.instantkarma.org: a collection of John Lennon covers with profits going to #Darfur!

62) Here’s how you can start a STAND chapter and help #Darfur! http://www.standnow.org/chapters/start

63) "Having called what is happening in #Darfur genocide and having vowed to stop it, it is time for the West to keep its word" Romeo Dallaire

64) Why You Should Care: http://www.standcanada.org/index.php?section=why-you-should-care Save #Darfur

65) Genocide: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/genocide See #Darfur.

66) "Dozens upon dozens of groups and organizations have prioritized stopping the killing in #Darfur before there is no one left to be killed."

67) "The UN has become a largely irrelevant, [...] and the just-released U.N. report on the atrocities in #Darfur, Sudan, proves the point."

68) "We all might ask ourselves why we tune in to these more trivial matters and tune out when it comes to #Darfur. " -Nicholas Kristof

69) "While Americans have heard of #Darfur and think we should be doing more there, they arent actually angry at the president about inaction. "

70) #Darfur is home to many races of farmers, who identify as African, and nomadic herders, who identify as Arab.

71) Janjaweed: an armed militia supported by the Sudanese Government to help the Sudanese army kill its own people. Save #Darfur.

72) "If a government shuts off all access to the country, how can we get a clear sense of the nature and extent of the violence?" Save #Darfur

73) How to get the Facts about #Darfur: http://clg.portalxm.com/library/keytext.cfm?keytext_id=157

74) Every month I update my power point about #Darfur, yet the only thing that ever really changes is the death count numbers.

75) #Darfur is a region in Sudan that has been suffering from genocide for numerous years, yet is barely heard on the news.

76) #Darfur is one of the biggest tragedies of the 2st century -and one of the most ignored.

77) Take action in #Darfur, because the UN doesn't seem to be doing anything.

78) Unfortunately, because the UN Security Council has countries that trade with Sudan on it, it impedes action in #Darfur.

79) The people of #Darfur have enough to worry about without the genocide. This is unacceptable.

80) Support Bashir's arrest warrant, put strict trade sanctions on Sudanese oil, and return the displaced home.

81) Follow: @ExhibitDarfur, save #Darfur

82) Follow: @StandCanada, save #Darfur

83) Read: The Devil Came on Horseback, save #Darfur

84) Isa is a seven year old girl who will never know her parents because they both died when her village was lit on fire. Save #Darfur.

85) If the people of #Darfur aren't being shot at, they're starving from trying to escape being shot at.



These people need YOUR HELP. Even something as simple as starting a STAND (Students Take Action Now Darfur) chapter at your school could help to end this tragedy. Organize rallys. Fundraise. Donate. Do whatever you can do, because the people of Darfur cannot wait any longer for relief.

Love always,
A.

visit hailmary-fullofgrace.blogspot.com for more information

25 July 2009

Bacon Bar?!

Uhhhh, I need this. Thanks.



/end.

Love always,
A.

22 July 2009

Won't Get Fooled Again

Ohai, outfit post.

To go to Bed Bath and Beyond




top-Urban Outfitters, shorts- Forever21, gladiator sandals- Rue21etc.

I had a really cute tunic to post, but then I realized the lighting in the photo was sort of awful. Blergh.

So, I'm DIYing this skirt. I don't know what else I should do with it.



Love always,
A.

Six Outfits

I really love the film Amelie. If you've never seen it, I seriously suggest you watch it. It's so whismical and lovely. I hope that someday I can watch it without the subtitles.

So, this week's Six Outfits is inspired by the charm of tea parties... Amelie put me in one of those moods where you just feel incredibly happy and appreciative of the little things

Six Outfits Tea Party

Outfit post most likely today or tomorrow!

Love always,
A.


21 July 2009

7 Questions With...Mary of Hail Mary!

Recently, I sat down with (well, on opposite ends of two computers, in different countries, but you get the picture) with charismatic and engaging Mary of Hail Mary. Mary was gracious enough to provide me, and in turn, you, with a little bit of her charm...

Your blog focuses on much more than just fashion, unlike a lot of blogs out there. Why do you think it's important to cover other aspects of your own life and the world around you?

It's silly and stupid and completely foolish to let fear run your life, but in reality I think sometimes it just can't be helped. A lot of really big things scare me. I'm terrified of being put in a box and labelled as some ditzy clothes obsessed air head, but also worried that this generation is being raised into a more apathetic mindset than I think it should be. But most horrific of all is the idea that there is the mass murder of entire culture (such as the genocide in Darfur) as well as hatred directed towards every day people for having a certain body type or being of a certain sexual orientation and people feel comfortable either completely turning a blind eye to it or dismissing it because some kind of band aid solution has been applied. My fears motivate me to push forward my ideas and activism in real life, and it was only a matter of time before it trickled on to the blog. What was originally an "escape into frivolousness" for me ended up being a platform not because that was my intention but more because this is who I am, and this is what I do, and maybe you'd like to do it too.

Many of the girls who comment your blog cite you as an inspiration and a role model. What does it mean to you to be a role model?

The first time someone used the term 'role model' in an email I almost choked on my cinnamon roll. Because that's what I was eating, a cinnamon roll, and not some crazy-healthy new superfruit berry discovered in Brazil and harvested organically by well paid women striving for world peace or whatever I then thought role models were supposed to eat. It was the same reaction I had when someone posted that they thought I was beautiful; I was flattered, but more in a "Ha, that's because you've only seen a glimpse of me" way. This inspired a bit of a "Fine, I'll just post whatever I think and whatever I look like" attitude where I was expected to get shut down but was incredibly [and] pleasantly surprised. People looked at mediocrely taken pictures of me doing interesting things and read stuff that was much more controversial then what I originally stuck to and actually supported me. Having girls see my insecurities and harsh views and awkwardness but still feeling like they can write such positive little notes about me means so much more than people who just saw a pretty picture and a "Save the World!" This is why being a role model to me is mainly about being true to who you are. Maybe I'll lose some followers along the way, but if I stick to my beliefs then I can feel like the people I inspire are actually inspired to do something I think is worthwhile.




Many of your outfits reflect a more classic, elegant style, instead of overly trendy pieces. What is your advice on creating a personal style?

I've always had a mild obsession [with] but somewhat failed at minimalism. I mean, I love the idea of being sleek and clean and organized but at the same time I know once I buy something it's hard for me to give it up again unless I know the next person I pass it on to will really enjoy it, and who wants an item three years after the fad is gone? (see: crazy glitter wedge foamy flipflops a la Spice Girls.) Once it enters my closet, it tends to stay there, although I am working on this, so it really came down to whether I wanted a closet full of stuff I could wear for a little while versus something that would actually be worth holding on to for the several years. Besides, I look like I'm 14 (I'm actually 4'9) so I try not to dress the part.

I think the best advice I can give sartorially is:

-Buy a lot of basic dresses in a bunch of solid colours. A lot of times when I'm on the run I know I'll have some kind of cotton dress that can be put with trench coats or cardigans and have necklaces and stuff thrown on top of it.

-Let what you love be reflected in what you wear. I collect tote bags from every art museum I've ever been to and my favourite necklace at the moment is a dangling gold pendant from India, a country I've been crazy about visiting for a while.

-Take the bus. I know this sounds crazy, but if your city has a decent transit system, being eco friendly is apparently the latest trend now (how chic of you!) and you're just exposed to such a variety of people all standing or sitting still for at least a minute or two. The best people watching is definitely on public transit, and you get to save the world at the same time!

Your blog, and you, are very real. How do you choose what kind of things to write about? How does your daily life influence the things you share with your readers?

I am a very passionate person, and it can be hard for me not to write about what's going on in my daily life. I seldom think "Oh, I should do a post about ____" but more of the post just comes out that way because it's something I can't get off my mind. I write about Darfur fairly consistently because I volunteer for STAND (Students Taking Action Now Darfur) quite a bit, and I just have to write about it because... how can I think of anything else? As I mentioned earlier, being a genuine person is very important to me and what I write about is like me being honest with myself as to what is on my mind.




Over the past year or so, your blog has been quite successful. What advice do you give to girls (or guys!) looking to start a blog of their own?

I really have no idea what I did to get to where I am, but I'm flattered! For a week, I kept a site tracker to see how many people visited, but I forgot about it. I'm not blogging for income or attention, so I see no reason to follow so many "rules" laid out by "experts." What I strive for in my blog is for everything to be organized quite efficiently. I'm generally too lazy to check for typos and such. Once again, this is a pastime, not a career for me, but I like knowing that the paragraphs are roughly where they should be and the overall aesthetic looks pretty clean. I also go off on tangents. A lot. I don't know whether this is good or bad but a lot of people seem to like it, so do what works?

You're very passionate about things like body image and the genocide in Darfur. How do you help to bring attention to issues and injustices in the world?

I think the most important thing I do for my causes is I practice what I preach. It's commendable to write up on important issues but if you really want to show you care you need the actions to back everything up. My first major event was a letter writing campaign and it took almost all of my time and yet at the end all I could think was "Oh, that was pretty easy." Since then, I've organized large walks and am in the middle of organizing a concert. It's complicated but simple, as long as you ask for help and know your goals, people will give you at least a little bit of it. Activism is the greatest way to cure boredom, and it actually accomplishes something, unlike sitting around. And even look at the word: the first letters are 'act.' Words are great, but living them is better. When it comes to body image, it's a little harder. I don't think writing protest letters to modeling agencies is really as effective because at the end of the day it doesn't make the girl with borderline bulimia love herself anymore. This is where words are everything, and the actions are much smaller. I seek to create a bit of a safehaven, where any body critiquing comments are deleted, problems are addressed and discussed, and real girls are embraced. I try to write relatably and be frank with what I'm feeling, because chances are someone else needs to hear that they're not the only ones who feel that way.



In a lot of your earlier posts, you speak of your grandparents as inspirations to you. What sort of lessons have you learned from them and how have they helped you in your life?

Talking to both my grandmothers now is very hard for me as they both suffer from types of dementia, although one is much more advanced than the other. But the truth is, they inspired me. The thing about parents is you're with them all the time, they make rules, they raise you, and I admire that so much but to inspire is a different thing. My grandparents on both sides took me to art galleries to foster a love of creativity and let me play in the wood shop to make my own boxes. My grandmother on my father's side was actually on the Arts Council of Canada at one point, and her name is displayed at a lot of art galleries and hot spots in this city. She truly did something, and now I regret that I can't communicate with her anymore because as a child I didn't really appreciate as much what she had to offer. Now I long for the days where I could have spoken to her about pop art and eastern culture and the gritty glamour of working in the arts. She met Christopher Plummer from the Sound of Music, she knew fashion designers, she did everything at some point... and all of these memories have been taken away by Alzheimer's. Some people live vicariously through their children, but I think sometimes I live vicariously for my grandmother, going to a university she poured effort into and always supporting the local art scene just so she knows she has indeed left a legacy.

Note: A few days after this interview, Mary sent me an email... 'I'm not sure if it's too late but I just had a genius conversation on the phone that answers your last question better than any of what I typed. I just got off the phone with my great aunt, whom I consider pretty much a grandparent, and I was explaining how I wasn't committing to any boy any time soon because my standards were too high. She's a very typical little old Polish lady and I was expecting her to "pftt" me and remind me how she was married by twenty but instead she said, "Sure, boys compliment your eyes but so does the right shade of blue. Good girl Mary, go buy yourself a dress." '

all photos courtesy of hailmary-fullofgrace.blogspot.com

20 July 2009

Currently Coveting


On my wishlist right now...
1. Cute flats. I defintely need new shoes for school. I already have two pairs of boots, so some new flats are in order.

Paddington ballet flats, fredflare.com, $28


Sasha bow slip-ons, fredflare.com, $28 dollars

2. Belts. I need some new brown and black simple leather bel
ts, for tunics, dresses, etc.

Ecote peace belt, UrbanOutfitters.com, $19.99

The Skinny Belt, fredflare.com, $12

3. Jackets. I need all-purpose, go anywhere light jackets for fall.

Twilight jacket by BB Dakota, fredflare.com, $64
I wear a lot of jeans, so this would work either with bo
ots, flats, or sneakers.

Classic trench, gap.com, $88
I've been longing for a trench for the past few weeks, and this one is perfect. So perfect, so versatile, so chic. There's also a lovely little girl's trench at Target for $19.99, so that may be another option as well.

I'm also in the market for a new pair of low top black Converse All-stars. I think everyone should have a pair, they can easily be dressed up or down.


Love always,
A.

Across the Pond

I hate the fact that I am a poor college student/teenager. Right now, all my income is going towards my trip to...

Amsterdam!
AND


Paris!

9 days over Winter Break, leaving the 29th of December. Less than 2000USD, which is fairly inexpensive. I've got at least a thousand in bonds from my grandparents, and if I book before August 31st, I save 100 dollars. Hopefully I can sucker my parents into paying for my passport...

Oh hai, I'm boring


So, I was just about to do an outfit post, but then I realized I'd uploaded the outfit pictures to my laptop which I can't post right now because I don't have wireless at my house :(

In which case, I will entertain you with the following useless tidbits...




I love this song... I'm obsessed with it lately...






My AP score STILL didn't come, even though everyone got theirs last week. BOO. And I am still waiting for my boots. Okay, I'm boring, the end. Hail Mary interview soon, outfit posts, and maybe some videos!

Love always,
A.

18 July 2009

Lameness

So, I got my new laptop! It's cute. Sorry I've been so neglectful, but I've worked a lot these past few days and whatnot. I promise a proper post will happen tomorrow.



Love always,
A.

image courtesy of imgfave

13 July 2009

Eeeeek!

Super quick update while I'm writing to my two pen pals....

Expect the captivating and inspiring interview with Mary of Hail Mary either tomorrow or Wednesday! You'll love it!

PS-I cannot wait for this movie!



Especially since "Us" by Regina Spektor is playing in the beginning and it's been a favorite song of mine since, like, the seventh grade!

Love always,
A.