Tag Archives: Paris

This Summer I…

Summer is over and the memories begin. Here are some things that made it a great season.

Went to great social media events with my official plus one, @stephullman

Enjoyed High Tea

Became a Bridesmaid

Took my first Trip to Barcelona

Returned to my favourite city in the world (Paris)

Did a lot of baking (these are pistachio biscotti)

Experimented with Nail Art

Ate many wonderful meals (this is the octopus salad from Fabbrica)

Made new blogger friends

Ate as much ice cream as possible

Enjoyed lazy cottage weekends

How was your summer?

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Look at You Miss Jet-Setter

Today I read an article in the Globe and Mail about being uncomfortable with our happiness. You know that feeling you sometimes get when you buy yourself some extra special for a job well done or when you book yourself a trip to a place you’ve been dreaming of forever?

You’re pumped to be finally getting that DSLR you’ve been waiting for, or on that plane to Europe you’ve saved up for months to be on but then there’s this little nagging tick somewhere in your gut, almost making you wish you would have changed your mind.

Did I really need to spend a few hundred dollars on that gadget that will be outdated in mere months, and shouldn’t I have just spent my vacation time at home in the backyard? Who am I to be living this good life? What have I done to qualify for these privileges, you might hear yourself asking.

I recently felt this way about two big spending decisions. They were actually the first two major purchases I’ve made completely on my own (with the help of my Visa) since I’ve started by full-time job as a staff writer. I booked a 12-day trip to Spain and France with a girlfriend, and then a few weeks later I bought myself the Nikon DSLR I’ve been drooling over since January.

Maybe it is because I’m not used to having this much disposable income (you might remember I’ve spent the better half of the last year or so as an unpaid intern), or maybe it’s because I was feeling it was a bit too soon into my steady paying job to be blowing this kind of cash but the happiness anxiety, as Sarah Hampson put it, was there for the better part of a week each time I signed on the dotted line for these things.

Reading this article today brought those initial feelings back. On Friday I’ll be getting on that airplane with the expensive gadget in hand. As I get ready to go and finish up the week at work there’s no doubt those comments of “you’re so lucky!” “I wish I could go!” and “I’m so jealous!” will be repeated from friends, co-workers and family members.

Instead of having those thoughts of my unworthiness fill my head as I pack my suitcase, I’ve decided I am going to start my own happiness revolution too and “celebrate the meaningful and happy parts” of my trip and the rest of this summer and hopefully infect others with the same thoughts. Life is too short to be depriving ourselves of our dreams.

I hope you’ll do the same. Stay tuned for all the happy updates when I return later this month.

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Exhibit Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef and Arpels

Leave your credit card and home ladies, because these fabulous jewels are not for sale. Running until July 4, 2011, the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York City is hosting Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels. The exhibit features more than 350 magnificent works, including jewels, time pieces, accessories, fashion pieces and objets d’art boasting impeccable stones and unparalleled gem-setting techniques that have made Van Cleef & Arpels a leader in the luxury jewel market since its inception in 1896.

Pieces worn by the actress and Princess are on display

Highlights include priceless pieces worn by some of the century’s most glamorous figures; Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor, the Duchess of Windsor and Marlene Deitrich. The exhibit also explores the historical significance of the French jewellery house’s contributions to 20th century jewellery design, featuring transformation pieces which can be worn several different ways, as well as exotic pieces commissioned for clients in India, Egypt and China. What’s more is that jewellery admirers can even share their favourite gems with their friends through email, Facebook and Twitter on the complimentary iPads while visiting the museum. Total bliss!

Can’t make it stateside to see these gorgeous gems in person? The Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels book features over 250 pages of the jewellers most celebrated and innovated pieces for you to pore over to get the full effect of the reach of Van Cleef & Arpels rich history of design and style. Either way keep your sunglasses handy because this bling is mighty shiny.

Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum
2 East 91st Street New York, NY 10128

Through July 4 2011. cooperhewitt.org

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