A big thanks to Megan at Design Matters for this award! I've really enjoyed working on this blog for the last two months and I hope that at least a few people are enjoying it as well. I've been having a lot of fun and starting this was a great way for me to puruse a creative outlet in my free time. I really appreciate everyone who has been following tinsel* and who's helped me with spreading the word!
I'd like to pass this award along to a few of my favorite bloggers these days:
The other day I stumbled upon a review for what has turned out to be the best mascara I've ever used by far (and I consider myself to be an expert). Most days I just use a waterproof mascara (NYC waterproof mascara in a light blue tube, only $1.79, such a bargain) and then layer on a volumizing mascara afterward. Unfortunately I wasn't blessed with naturally curling lashes so I've found that by layering mascara, starting with waterproof, helps hold the curl longer throughout the day, especially in the summer heat. After reading Agyness Deyn's blog naag (awesome blog, by the way), I decided I'd try Rimmel London's Max Volume Flash mascara that promises 14x the volume. I was pretty skeptical, but for $5.49 at Target, it wasn't like it was going to be the worse purchase I've ever made. Turns out, it's FABULOUS. I've tried countless mascaras and this one is the winner of them all - it's not clumpy and makes my lashes look long and thick in just a few swipes. And the hot pink tube doesn't hurt. Can you tell I'm in love?
Tonight I made S'more Bars for my family and they are a HUGE hit...It takes about five minutes prep, 8-10 minutes in the oven, and then about 15 minutes for cooling. Since it's so hot out today we put them in the fridge to stay cool. You can always add less chocolate chips if it's too chocolately; I only used about 3/4 of a bag.
After baking, in the refrigerator. They taste much better than they look!
"Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering."
**** (4/5 stars)
"The last words of this haunting novel resonate like a pealing bell. "He fell in love. It was his life." This is the unofficial obituary of octogenarian Leo Gursky, a character whose mordant wit, gallows humor and searching heart create an unforgettable portrait. Born in Poland and a WWII refugee in New York, Leo has become invisible to the world. When he leaves his tiny apartment, he deliberately draws attention to himself to be sure he exists. What's really missing in his life is the woman he has always loved, the son who doesn't know that Leo is his father, and his lost novel, called The History of Love, which, unbeknownst to Leo, was published years ago in Chile under a different man's name. Another family in New York has also been truncated by loss. Teenager Alma Singer, who was named after the heroine of The History of Love, is trying to ease the loneliness of her widowed mother, Charlotte. When a stranger asks Charlotte to translate The History of Love from Spanish for an exorbitant sum, the mysteries deepen. Krauss (Man Walks into a Room) ties these and other plot strands together with surprising twists and turns, chronicling the survival of the human spirit against all odds. Writing with tenderness about eccentric characters, she uses earthy humor to mask pain and to question the universe. Her distinctive voice is both plangent and wry, and her imagination encompasses many worlds."
-- Publisher's Weekly
Last night I finished reading The History of Love and I can't wait for someone else to read it so we can talk about it! One of my favorite things in the world is when I'm reading a book and I can't stand to put it down; when it takes absolutely all of my will power to set it down without finishing it is the best. It ended up taking me far too long to finish reading this, but not because it wasn't good, I simply just had the craziest two weeks of moving and finishing class. I decided that I would use the Publisher's Weekly review since I don't feel as though I could write a summary that would do it justice, but I did find out that there is a movie based on the book due to be released in 2012. I typically love the books so much more than the movies but I always check out the movies just to see the book from a different perspective (it is always so different than my own, I think it's good to see things differently once in a while! But this is a whole different conversation for another time). The one thing that I love about this book is the wit of the characters. Leo Gursky is often so...crotchety that it's hard to assume that he is anything but real. I will leave you to read the book for yourselves, but I have one last thing to mention. Two of my favorite quotes/passages regarding love that I had read before but had no idea what they were from are in this book!
"The fact that you got a little happier today doesn't change the fact that you also became a little sadder. Every day you become a little more of both, which means that right now, at this exact moment, you're the happiest and the saddest you've ever been in your whole life."
"How do you know?"
"Think about it. Have you ever been happier than right now, lying in the grass?"
"I guess not. No."
"And have you ever been sadder?"
"No [...] "What about you? Are you the happiest and the saddest right now that you've ever been?"
"Of course I am."
"Because nothing makes me happier and nothing makes me sadder than you."
The Green Revolution is everywhere lately and it's made its debut in fashionable, eco-friendly clothing. Popular retailers such as H&M and Topshop have introduced their own lines of organic and free-trade clothing with affordable prices. Several months ago I bought the H&M pale pink dress with ruffles on the sleeves (see below & click here to see all pieces from the Garden Collection). I love the line - in my opinion, its way cuter than their usual pieces in the stores around me that are typically more "business-casual." Anyways, here are a few of my favorite eco-friendly pieces:
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they’ve faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you’ll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.
Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.
Do one thing every day that scares you.
Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Don’t waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind. The race is long and, in the end, it’s only with yourself.
Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.
Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t.
Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You’ll miss them when they’re gone.
Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else’s.
Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.
Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.
Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.
Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents. You never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They’re your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.
Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.
Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft. Travel.
Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.
Respect your elders.
Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you’ll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.
Don’t mess too much with your hair or by the time you’re 40 it will look 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen."
-- Mary Schmich, columnist for the Chicago Tribune
Just a few things that I've been eyeing...
1. Marc by Marc Jacobs Bobbies, $28 - Perfect for pinning back your bangs to stay cool in the summer.
2. MAC Viva Glam GaGa Lipstick, $14 - The only lipstick I ever wear is a shade similar to this color by Sephora. I've read a few reviews (here and here) and I've decided I'm going to buy it when I go out this weekend. It came out a few months ago but I'm always hesitant to buy lipstick because I already have a few that I use and they last a long time, but all proceeds go towards HIV/AIDS so I can't pass that up!
3. Philosophy Senorita Margarita, $16 - This 3-in-1 body wash/shampoo/conditioner is great for taking on vacation, since we all hate hotel shampoo.
4. Queen of...Ooh La La! Shaving Gel, $4 at drugstores - This gel contains pure aloe vera, rarely found in less-expensive products.
5. Proclaim Olive Spray-On Glosser, $8.29 - My stylist used this the last time I highlighted my hair and it really helped with frizz and fly-aways.
The last week has been crazy: between finishing up classes, moving home, unpacking, working a ton and getting together with family, I've had zero time. I hope everyone had a wonderful Father's Day and is enjoying the beautiful weather. I'll be posting much more in the future and hopefully not so late at night!
With the 4th of July coming up (I can't wait!), I made these Martha Stewart drink parasols for a barbeque with friends a few weeks ago. It's never too early to be patriotic and I wanted to try them out - they turned out to be adorable. All you have to do is print and cut out the umbrella designers here and tape them closed on the inside after cutting along the dotted line. To keep the umbrellas in place, just add a little hot glue around the skewer underneath the umbrella. It literally takes about 5 minutes tops. Enjoy!
I drop my phone constantly so I'm always on the lookout for new cases. Here are a few of my favorites (all those pictured below are for the LG EnV Touch) and I've personally had the rhinestone and Coach ones. The rhinestones can hurt your ear if you talk for a long time but I love the way it looks so I like it better than the striped Coach one that I currently have on my phone. Let me know if you have any good sites, I'm looking for a new one!
One of my favorite home/decor magazines was Domino and since it's unfortunately gone out of print I've been looking for a substitute fill the void. Lonny Magazine, an online magazine started by Michelle Adams (formerly of Domino) and photographer Patrick Cline. Its absolutely adorable and you can click on images that link directly to purchase items. I love it and its free! I'm obsessed already.
This is the BEST website I've found in a longgg time. Gossip Girl is one of my favorite shows (I can't resist a scandalous plot line and attractive boys) and the wardrobe on this show is impeccable. You can shop looks by character and find either exact or similar matches to clothes from each episode on the website below. Now we can all pretend like we live on New York's Upper East Side (even though in my head I already do).
Ikea is the best store for decorating! I stopped by the one in Canton earlier and fell in love with these chandeliers. I love how the display had several hanging at alternating heights rather than just one - and they're only $39.99 each. Definitely a cute way to add something to a room! Here's a few other ones that I love: