Sunday, 30 June 2013

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Aritzia : Mail!

This year I was lucky enough to receive an email from Aritzia saying that I was on their private sale list!

Aritzia
Once a year Aritzia invites their 'favourite customers' to shop a private sale where every item in store is on sale for 20% off (or more depending on the brand). People don't know what exactly it is that qualifies them, but it's a pretty good hypothesis that these people are frequent shoppers who spend a certain amount each year.

It kind of confused me because I feel like this year I spent very little in comparison to previous years, in fact I seem to spend less every year. Nevertheless I love this sale because for some items the 20% off is still more than some of their typical discounts of $5-10! Maybe it's during these sales that I actually spend enough to qualify for their sale? That would be pretty ironic. I actually usually share an account with my mother who will shop there every once in a whole so it might be for that reason that our total piles up a little more.

What usually happens is you go in store and show a sales associate your email, after this they hand you a printed card listing all the discounts next to the brands that they sell. What I noticed was slightly different was that this year they seemed to look at the email more thoroughly to see if it was legitimate. I'm guessing that some people forward the email to another or perhaps screenshot it on their mobile devices if they weren't able to get one of these 'Invites'.

Anyways what's new is that this year Aritzia finally joined the packs of its fellow retailers and finally began the ecommerce component of its company. What's even nicer is that they allowed customers to access this private sale online and provided the same discounts.

It's pretty funny because I spent a few days trying to decide whether I should buy their Wilfred Diderot cardigan. Well technically I think I've been thinking it over for years (ever since it first came out) but even more so since it would now be $76 instead of $96. I had finally decided to get it but had procrastinated! What happened was that I was about to go to Cuba the next day, and I made a mistake thinking that the mall would be open late on a Saturday - turns out it closes at 6! I realized I could order it online, but between packing and other tasks it slipped my mind again. The sale ended while I was away on vacation, and only remembered this mistake at the gates of the air port! Thank goodness for mobile technology! I didn't bring my own phone since I wouldn't be needing it during my trip but thankful my parents did. So what did I do during the half hour of extra time waiting to board the plane? I ordered my cardigan last minute online on a phone!

It's great because the parcel was waiting for me when I got home, and the packaging actually seems a lot nicer than what I would have walked out with from the store! So no regrets here. I also don't know if it had to do with the 'private status' but my order didn't reach the $100 minimum for free shipping but the $8 shipping free was still waived when I was checking out.

Aritzia candle
I even got a 'second' candle! The first one I bought was Fig while this second one I bought is Rose. Supposedly you can get multiple candles if you buy from Aritzia, TNA and Wilfred but I guess online gets you another one! I forgot to mention that these candles are their gifts to you (along with a purchase) and occur every year for their 'First Tier'. Usually it's a beach towel and up until this year I never qualified for a gift.














Wilfred diderot cardigan

Aritzia candle



Aritzia candle


Friday, 21 June 2013

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Got my G!

Here in Ontario we have a "Graduated Licensing  Program" or something along those linse. Unlike many states or places which normally have two statuses, here there are three.

There's G1, G2, and G.

G1 is the typical learners permit that most people have to obtain, here the minimum age is 16. With this you can drive on the road as long as there is an experienced driver at your side (4 years experience or more I believe). It's pretty crazy that all you have to do for this is write a written test. It's simply a theory test, and with that there are 16 year old teens driving these huge metal vehicles.

After that you actually have to do a road test, this means you're driving a specific route with an examiner at your side. It's pretty standard after you pass, you can drive pretty much everywhere on your own. This is when you have your G2, what's different is that here this is still not a full license. There are a few limitations, and when I say that I mean very few. It can be a misconception that G2 drivers are not to drive on the expressway/highway, but in order to pass the  next driving test it is required that one has experience driving on one!

Some things they test you on: parallel or reverse parking, three point turns, hill side parking, changing lanes, complete stops, constant eye movement (mirrors and blind spot). The G2 test is much shorter than the G test. 

The difference is that you cannot have any alcohol in your system when driving, absolutely nothing, nada, zero %. This is regardless of one's license to be fair, anyone under the age of 21 (even with a G) is prohibited to drink and drive. After that the only other difference is that between 12am-5am, G2 drivers with 0-6 months experience can only have one other rider in the car; and between 6 months experience to either G/19 years old one (whichever comes first) one can only have 3 riders in the car.

Any how, today I went to Aurora and was ecstatic to receive a 'pass' from my examiner. I thought that I had done pretty poorly, don't get me wrong I can drive and have a lot of experience now but I also picked up a lot of bad habits - who doesn't! I guess I was lucky since the mistakes didn't accumulate to too much and I didn't make any disqualifying actions!

This is actually my second attempt, the first attempt landed me with a fail since I didn't see the street that the examiner wanted me to turn at until the last minute - I supposedly braked too quickly forcing the car behind me to come to a 'dangerous stop'. It's actually the road "Berzy" right behind the Go Station that caused me to fail but I think it's pretty unfair because it's at the top of the hill. I went back to the area before my test to scout it and remembered this exact spot, the left turn lane is faded too making it really unclear! It also sucks because if you fail halfway they don't even tell you this as they continue to test you on other things such as parking.

This second time also seemed to go by much quicker, we just went down a few rodes, switch lanes, went on the highway 404, did an emergency stop and a parallel park. I was actually super lucky with the parallel since I was asked to park at a spot that had no curb!

Some common mistakes:

  • Not switching into the right lane after a left turn ( you should be driving in the right lane the majority of the time)
  • Forgetting to look down streets as you pass by (through intersections)
  • Not using the parking hand brake (I never use that since I drive an automatic)
  • Not releasing the brake
  • Turning off 4-way signals
  • Not looking around enough/ more eye and head movement


Monday, 17 June 2013

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Visa - misc

You know what's strange? For most people they find that they're able to budget and keep track of their money easier when they pay with cash. I find, in contrast, that charging things on my visa helps me know what I'm spending. Besides having to think about every swipe (which is what most people don't do) I love the fact that it creates a transaction record.

I'm actually really bad at keeping track of receipts and so I find that it can be hard to know how much I'm really spending. For example, when I pay for food with cash I find that it's really hard to account for that money. Most people don't really keep those receipts from Tim Hortons or Jack Astors, but I think it's important to know where the money is flowing! For that reason I actually try to charge everything on credit.

I also don't know how to properly store my receipts, right now they're getting thrown into an old Converse shoe box but it's not exactly the right size so I just end up with a pile of disorganized chaos! Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to properly manage them? I've read that some people use letter envelopes and I think that's pretty interesting and might just start to do that.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

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Topbox June 2013

Around the mid beginning of every month, I come home super excited in anticipation for my Topbox (a subscription service). It's great since they send you an email once it has been delivered, so you know from work or school or wherever you are that you have a parcel at home anticipating your return.

As I may have mentioned already, I used to subscribe to Loose Button's Luxe Box, but it was only after a short while that I realized that the products weren't suiting my needs and it was becoming a waste of my money - which is why I ended up with TopBox.

It's approximately $13 and I really like the products (the majority of the time). They'll usually give you a mix of products that are by an established brand, and some that are up and coming (Eyeko for example -yes I had it before it hit Sephora).

This month I got four items: a Belvada mini eyelash curler, Benefit's Sugarbomb lip gloss, Jelly Pong Pong's Fairy Lashes Mascara and Paris's Colour Cubes Loose Pigment.

I was surprisingly impressed with the eyelash curler! I normally used the popular/favourite amongst Asians curler by Shiseido. Most curlers don't curve around my eyes properly since they're physiologically different than Caucasian eyes! Usually they don't reach for enough without accidentally clipping my eyelids, but to my surprise they curled them extremely easily. However as a disclaimer, I did use it after having already applied mascara earlier on in the day. Regardless it was easy to use and reached the base of my lashes with ease.

The Sugarbomb lipgloss comes in a shade that I love. It's not too bright but has the right amount of shimmer and color. You can see depending on how much you apply it can come out as a nice rosy pink or nice and sheer. I put it on briefly and found that it had a nice subtle scent, it was also nice and not sticky (a problem that many lip glosses seem to face).

I haven't tried the mascara yet but I love the outer tube that it comes in. Might post a short review or update to this later.

And finally, I got some loose pigment in shades I really liked. The only thing worse than getting a bad product is getting something that's good but in a colour that you don't like or won't ever use, so thank goodness for that! It's actually pretty funny because when I first opened the package I saw that the eye shadow was all broken and powdery. I was instantly upset that the shadow had broken apart on its delivery (the packaging skip forgot to mention that it was loose powder). Thankfully after opening it (and before sending a complaint to topbox) I realized that it was supposed to be like this and my happiness was renewed.