Unsolicited Product Endorsements.

I'm long overdue for one of these.

It's now been a month since I moved and that month was full of new places, new food and new things. Some have been great. Others have been just OK. Some were terrible. However, in the spirit of consumerism and my current obsession with online shopping (which never actually results in a sale, since 99% of places won't ship here, but I have loaded virtual carts everywhere!), here is my current list of faves.

1. The "have-it-built-by-a-professional" lunch salad bar. I'll blog about this separately, but I am loooooving the chicken, asparagus, sundried tomato, avocado and feta combo, with balsamic dressing on the side. It's like discovering salad all over again.

2. Perfume. I'm not really a big perfume person - mostly because I'm always afraid of being "that person" who overdoes it. Even one spray in an inconspicuous place can cause major discomfort for someone else, and since I've been that uncomfortable person many times, I'm pretty conscious of pungent perfumes. That being said, I'm actually allergic to a lot of perfumes (like, anything made by GAP, which is unfortunate when you're a teenager and the GAP perfume is the only stuff you can afford), but every once in awhile, I come across a few that are awesome and don't leave me with a splitting headache. This normally happens around this time of year, when most department stores are shoving beautifully packaged gift sets at you, which for me, has resulted in more than one purchase of a perfume that I actually hated. Like the 'L'interdit' episode of 2002. Yikes. This year, I am fortunate to live in a place that sells high-end beauty products at surprisingly low-end prices, so I've started shopping around again for a new bottle to sit next to my Jean Paul Gaultier 'Classique'. My top picks:

Vera Wang - 'Princess'

Escada - 'Island Heat'

and...perhaps surprisingly, perhaps not...

'With Love' by Hilary Duff.

The Duffster has actually rolled out something pretty sweet. Maybe I was biased given that it shares its name with her catchy little tune (however overplayed), but I was impressed. I do enjoy the occasional stuff by Duff.

3. TV via the internet. I'm totally caught up on the Hills and don't actually own a TV. How great is this?

4. 'The Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook' by Tosca Reno, which was recommended to me by Laila when I was home in October. Full of great, easy, healthy recipes. We have been enjoying her recipe for baked oatmeal for a month now...you can change up the ingredients and make it differently everytime.

5. Facebook. Ever heard of it? After two months of waiting to get on a plane and living like a nomad, and probably because I chose to wait out the remainder at home, somehow I ran out of time to say all of my Ottawa goodbyes. Thanks to Facebook, I've been able to say virtual goodbyes and keep people updated on everything with minimal effort. Not to sound lazy or anything, but I do admit that it's made everything just a little bit easier.

6. December NOT in Ottawa. Seriously. I would highly recommend this product to anyone. After 5 complete winters in my nation's capital, I was feeling pretty seasoned to the whole ordeal. Until I went for a walk this morning at 6:30 a.m. wearing only a light shirt. And then got to work to find an email from EXH in Ottawa about some further 30 cm of expected snow, expected to fall on top of the existing 30 cm of snow. As much as I miss how pretty snow looks with Christmas lights, I really don't miss one flake of it.
7. 30 Rock. I've been a longtime Tina Fey fan, so it's not a big surprise that I love this show. Hilarious and so smart.

8. Home-made salsa. Armed with a can of diced tomatoes, a small can of pineapple, some chipotle chiles, part of an onion and some Epicure salsa mix, Kurt mixed up the most amazing salsa last weekend. We've been eating it on everything...pita, chips, chicken, a spoon...it's seriously delicious. He's under strict instruction to ensure that there is a container of it in the fridge at all times.

9. Fish-watching. This may sound like a downright retarded way to pass time, but scarily enough, we're getting into it. It is amazing at how much time Kurt and I can kill watching fish. It's like birdwatching, but instead of looking up, you're looking down. There is some great fish action off the various docks and wharves around our place, so often on our morning walks we will stop and check out what is going on below the surface. It's amazing to watch fish interact, who eats who, which ones swim how fast and wonder why certain fish seem to always be alone. I'm seriously thisclose to picking up some sort of regional fish book so that we can identify our scaley friends. Is that weird?

10. A good loofah. A good loofah, in my experience, is hard to come by. Either they are far too stiff and scratch the hell out of yourskin, or the bristles fall out constantly. In fact, I was completely turned off of loofahs until a new friend pointed out a brand that she'd tried and loved. So, I tried it. And I loved it. I haven't gotten into the whole dry-brushing thing though...I'll save that for another UPE (or the UPE vice, the Unsolicited Product Critique - these are always bad).


Anonymous said...

It took EXH even longer to get in this morning because everyone came back to work!

Tree trim is today, I will have a non-alcoholic glass of cheer for you!

Anonymous said...

Fish watching sounds great!

I too am allergic to almost all perfumes. The only one I can wear and 4 years on am still not sick of is Burberry Brit. I almost wish perfume didn't last so long so I could buy it more often, because it always comes in such pretty packages and box sets... But anyway. No perfume since being pregnant because I'm too worried I'll go off it!


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