Turning 21 . . . 

Birthday cake 2016So as of Wednesday morning, I am 21 years old. 

It’s scary to think that not all that long ago I was still in high school, and now I am almost finished university. I’ve always been intrigued by the way that time can feel as though it passes at a glacial pace one moment and then at warp speed the next.

Being the planner that I am, I read numerous articles and blog posts about what 21 was going to be like. Well, most of the articles must have been written from an American perspective because all the exciting things had to do with drinking. I drink socially, but certainly not enough to have a go-to drink, an alcohol budget, a preference for getting drunk on decent versus cheap liquor, or having a preferred bartender.

The other main thing mentioned in the articles was being able to travel to Vegas. I am actually planning to head to Vegas for the first time in early 2017 as a belated birthday celebration (spoiler alert for future travel blog posts!!!) but I already have my gambling cap set at $50 (talk about living life on the edge).  

Turkey Casserole November 2016
Grandma Pearl’s Incredible Turkey Casserole
As I do every year, I celebrated my birthday at my grandparents house, and my grandmother just so happened to have my favourite meal stashed away in her freezer: turkey casserole. Essentially it is all of the leftovers of Thanksgiving dinner combined into one culinary creation, and it is my ultimate comfort food. 

Last year I shared 20 facts about me in celebration of my 20th birthday, but this year I wanted to do something a little different and open up the comments section to questions. 

Birthday cake 2016 unlit
13 opened boxes of Smarties and one giant pink candle later, and my grandmother created the most epic pink birthday cake.

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Blogmas Day 23: Winter Birthdays

blogmasbannerGreetings lovely readers, and welcome to the 23rd day of Blogmas on Literary and Lovely!!!

Today, my family and I celebrated two very special birthdays: that of my grandfather, and that of my mother. My grandfather turned 86, and my mother, well . . . we don’t talk about her age. Almost everyone in my family was born in a winter month, with my birthday in November, my mother, grandfather, and aunt born in December, and my grandmother born in January, so we try to group celebrations together on certain days to make it easier for more of the family to attend the party.


My grandmother decided to make a sunshine yellow cake, which was both pretty and pretty delicious. However, we did encounter a small problem with the candles. Clearly “they don’t make them like they used to” in the words of my grandparents, because the candles melted right into the cake and actually pooled into a big, waxy mess. We didn’t even have them lit that long, which was disappointing. We ended up having to pluck bits of wax off the cake, but it was still just as tasty, albeit a bit bare in spots.


P.S. Don’t forget to enter my Christmas giveaway here for a chance to win an Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette!!! Giveaway closes December 24th at 11:59pm PST!!!

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A Few Birthday Beauty Treats

Good morning everyone!!!

With my birthday now 9 days behind us, I wanted to share with you what I received for my birthday, focusing in on a few beauty treats.

Beauty Treats: img_6234 I was fortunate to receive from my mother something I had been eyeing for quite some time: Esteé Lauder’s Colour Portfolio Palette. This set includes 30 Pure Colour Eyeshadows, two Pure Colour Glosses, and a Pure Colour Intense Kajal Eyeliner pencil. I absolutely love the range of colours in this portfolio, and each palette section actually pops out. Plus, there is a built-in mirror, making this portfolio perfect to take on a trip with all your eyeshadows in one place, complete with an applicator brush. img_6236When my mother purchased this for me, apparently she did so on the one day that Hudson’s Bay was giving away a free full size of  Estée Lauder’s Re-Nutriv Ultimate Lift Age-Correcting Cream, a $100 value. I love when things like that happen. img_6240.jpg And finally, I was able to pick up my birthday gift from Sephora: a set of two mini NARS Velvet Matte and Satin Lip Pencils in the shades Cruella and Rikugien. The former is a classic red shade, while the latter is a more muted pink shade. I just tried out Rikugien this morning, and it goes on so smoothly!!! Now to test its lasting power. img_6204 And now for the presents from my grandparents. For as long as I can remember, every birthday my grandmother gives me a 200 sheet package of ruled paper, a $50 bill, and a pair of gloves.

Paper: The most recent package of paper I have received to date was purchased back in the 90s. How do I know, you ask??? Well, each package has a page of coupons on the front, or a promotion. On one package in particular, the coupon for purchasing three Crispy Crunch chocolate bars and getting the fourth one free expired in 1992 . . . meaning the paper was purchased at least the year before. Then another package had a promotion for getting a Batman comic book for $1.29. That promotion ended back in the late 80s. But I love getting this paper every year. As a student, I find I am always running out of paper in binders, and it is so nice to always have a stash of more. Plus, since the paper is older, it has a slight yellow hue to it, which I love. So much better than the stark white of brand new paper with the overly defined red margin line. Ha, my paper is always so different that, back in high school, all my teachers knew which work was mine without looking at the name because the paper stood out in their marking pile. Ah, youth.

$50: My grandmother claims every year that she doesn’t know what to get people, so including some money in a card is her way of making sure she doesn’t give people anything they don’t want or wouldn’t use. I think she expects me to buy myself a little present with it, but I always end up depositing it into my savings account. Got to pay for school somehow.

The pair of gloves: Now this one I find so adorable. Each year, my grandmother goes on a weekend getaway with her childhood friend. They stay in a hotel, go out for dinner, and, of course, hit up the dollar store in the big shopping mall on the drive home. This is where her hoard of gloves comes from and, every year, I am given a pair of gloves. At this point, I have at least 19 pairs, but I think I have even more because sometimes I get a pair for Christmas too. You would think this would be more pairs of gloves than anyone could ever need, but they are actually really handy (ha, so punny). They are super compact, so I keep a pair in the car, in my backpack, in jacket pockets, in purses, and anywhere else I can think of so that, come winter, my hands will never be cold.

Finally, for my birthday I asked for a goat. Not one for myself, but one that would be donated to an organization like Free the Children or OxFam, who would give the goat to a family in a developing country. It is amazing to see how a single goat can change the economic status of a family, and how much it means to them. And it is always important to give to others.

I had such a wonderful birthday celebration with my family, and I am so thankful for these thoughtful presents.

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Turning 20 . . .

Picture 16Hello everyone!!!

Today marks the first day back at university after reading break. This means only three more weeks left until the end of classes!!! I am excited to have some days off to study for finals, but I have really liked the classes I have been in this term.

Incidentally, my birthday fell during reading break this year. As of 11:30am on Monday, I am officially 20 years young!!! It is seriously weird realizing that I can no longer call myself a teenager, especially considering I am still often mistaken for one. No really, I am. Like the other week, I wasn’t allowed into a 14A movie because I didn’t have an adult . . . talk about awkward when you know for a fact that you are older than the ticket taker at the theatre.

While I have shared a plethora of book- and beauty-related things on this blog, I have noticed that I haven’t shared many things about me personally. So, I figured, what better way to celebrate my birthday with all of you than to share with you 20 facts about me, one for each year I have been alive!!!

20 facts about me:

  1. I am 60.5 inches tall, or about 154cm for the metric system users out there. Yes, that half-inch really does matter
  2. I’ve always wanted to go on a road trip
  3. I am addicted to my grandmother’s homemade Nanaimo bars, especially when she freezes them and then serves them half-defrosted. It sounds weird but, trust me, they are delicious
  4. I have near-perfect vision, but I have still worn glasses since first grade
  5. I am left-handed
  6. I have absolutely no musical talent, but I would really like to learn to play an instrument. The guitar, perhaps.
  7. My favourite book is The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  8. My secret talent in life is coming up with mnemonic devices for studying. My latest creation is “Potatoes Teach Sewing Timidly”. I used it on my cognitive neuroscience exam today.
  9. I have never eaten an orange
  10. I live on an island
  11. I have every receipt from every purchase I’ve made in a shoebox
  12. My favourite colour is purple
  13. I am emphatically anti-Aunt Jemima “maple syrup”. Canadian maple syrup all the way!!!
  14. I am allergic to artificial colours and flavours, so basically the entire frozen food aisle and all the good chinese food restaurants are off limits for me
  15. I am an only child, but I think having siblings would have been fun
  16. I have Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  17. The song I currently have stuck in my head is Drove Me Wild by Tegan and Sara
  18. When I was a kid, I wanted to be a peach farmer, which is super weird because I had never, and still haven’t, eaten a peach
  19. I would like to start a YouTube channel if and when I ever pluck up the courage
  20. I am still afraid of the dark
Picture 12
I had to include a picture of the adorable cake my grandmother made for my birthday

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