Monday, 14 April 2014

Treats of the Week - My First Trip to Kingsmills

Kingsmills has been a London institution since 1865, and yet I'd never set foot in it until this past Friday.  I figured it was as good a time as any, since it's liquidating and will be closing soon.  I wasn't sure that I would find anything special to buy to say "that's what I got at Kingsmills" but I ended up finding a Fiesta ware large disc pitcher in cobalt blue.  I've always wanted one of their pitchers, and with this being the last one they had, and it being marked at 50% off, I couldn't leave without it!

Here's the rest of this week's treats!


  • Jenn and I went to see the Suicide Girls Blackhearts Burlesque show on Thursday and it was so much fun!  I'm planning on doing a more detailed post about it later, but I would definitely go again!
  • I went shopping in the States yesterday with my friend Amanda and it was so nice to just be out in the nice weather and spend too much money on Easter stuff!  Plus, Olive Garden.
  • I had a very special delivery today of a trampoline for Vivian (shhh, the Easter Bunny will be surprising her) and my purse, which I had stupidly forgotten at my mom's this weekend.  I'm so lucky to have good people to help me out!
  • Vivian had an orientation day at her new school this week - but her favourite part was getting to hang out with her buddy, Lily.
  • I actually made it out to Graphic Novel Group on Saturday for the first time in forever (dammit, those Frozen songs are infiltrating my thoughts) and it was so nice to get out and see everyone again!
  • Watching TV in bed - always worth mentioning as a treat.


Wednesday, 9 April 2014

My New Old Things

 I've been having some good luck with thrifting lately, so I put together a post to show off my finds!

First up, I got this little bowl for like 69 cents.  It's not real Pyrex, but it's pretty and handy for holding elastics and stuff at my desk.


I finally made it over to see Marty at Modern Hipster Antiques as he was closing up his London shop to make way for new opportunities.  You can check out his Facebook page here for more news on what he's got coming up.  I got these amazing vintage Canadian tabloids and I'm obsessed with them.  They were $10 each.  They're just so awesome, I would love to have them framed to decorate my not-yet-existent-bar.



I got a couple of little things for that wall o' Canadiana that I keep dreaming about.  I found these next few things at the Brydges Street Antique Mall.

First up is an old LCBO price list.  I love the picture of the old LCBO on the cover, and it's pretty cool to see the old prices  Going price for 12 cans of beer in 1968?  $2.80.  No wonder everyone was drunk back then.  It cost me $5 for the booklet.



I also grabbed this old Wink ad for $5, again decorating my non-existent bar.


And I got these two old postcards of a street in Quebec City and the Royal York Hotel.  I think it was $5 for both of them.  


I was also glad to find these funny prints still at the Brydges Street Market.  I just had to get them, for the Q-Tip picture alone.  It was $10 for the pair of them.  The mouse isn't nearly as funny, but they go together and I can't wait to hang them up in my bathroom.


I found a bunch of great travel tray things at Talize one day.  I thought I should get the Atlantic City one to go with the Vegas one I already have.  Apparently I collect these now.  It was 99 cents, so it was worth the risk.


I was super excited to find this tray with the Canadian coats of arms on it - perfect for that wall of Canadiana I keep planning!  I think it was 99 cents too.


I also couldn't leave this Halifax one behind, even though it isn't quite as great as the other two.  I didn't want to leave it and take the other two though, since I feel bad for inanimate objects sometimes.  It was 69 cents too, so it was worth it.


And my prize - the best thing I've bought in a long time.  I got this ballerina print from Marty at Modern Hipster Antiques for $40.  The frame alone is amazing - and I love the picture too.  It's one of those things that I love more and more the longer I look at it - I'm so glad I got it!


I don't have the perfect spot for it yet - Vivian wants me to hang it up in her room, but I want everyone to see it!  It will look perfect over my MCM loveseat, if I ever get around to getting it reupholstered.  


Sigh...so pretty.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Treats of the Week - April Showers

It's raining outside, which is an incredibly welcome change.  Hopefully it helps to clean up the yard a bit, as I have a pile of yardwork waiting for me this weekend!


  • Vivian wasn't quite done with iPad time when it was time for her bath, so she set it up on a stool in the bathroom.

She was also watching this video, which is pretty entertaining.
  • I went to see The Grand Budapest Hotel on the weekend, and I really enjoyed it.  Interestingly enough, the crew I went to see it with didn't think it was that awesome.  It's definitely a bit different than Wes Anderson's other stuff, but I liked the whole "story within a story" feel of it.
  • This is a little embarrassing, but I'm featured in the alumni profile of the Brescia Arts and Humanities newsletter this month.  It's not a bit deal AT ALL, but my mom thinks that it is, so I had better post the link.  You can check it out here.  This is also a test to see if my mom actually reads the blog.
  • Game of Thrones is back and more badass than ever!  I might have already seen episode 2, and it is pretty wild.  Can't wait to hear everyone's reactions!
  • I keep forgetting to post about this, but Worn on TV is my new obsession site.  So handy!
  • Vivian's schedule got a little thrown out of whack because of a change of her dance class - luckily it's been resolved with some help from my sister, and now Vivian and Blair will get to spend some more time together.
  • This nicer weather also means that my stupid cats have been spending more time outside - always a welcome event!


Friday, 4 April 2014

Very Vivian - Skating Star


You know how performance events go with little kids.  When they're Vivian age, for the most part they just kind of wander around in some vague formation and you clap and cheer just because they are out there in front of people.  Sure there's a few kids who are excelling, but for the most part they're just kind of there.  Then there's usually that one kid.  They probably aren't the fastest or the best, but something about them kind of steals the show.

I don't want to sound biased, but I'm pretty sure that Vivian was that kid at her skating carnival.



That's her skating picture from this year.  That's the kid who said she didn't want to go skating before most of the sessions.  The kid who flopped around on the ice and complained that her feet hurt and her stomach hurt and a million other things.  But put a costume on her and a camera in front of her face and she turns into a superstar.  Ridiculous.

So on the night of the carnival, Vivian was pumped.  She loved her costume, she was ready to go.  I sent her out on the ice to wait behind the curtain with the other kids and stood back.  I wasn't sure what to expect - all I was hoping for was that she would skate out a bit and not freak out.  It can be scary - it's dark, there's a bunch of people in there, and the instructors don't go out with them so they're all on their own.  Sure enough, the kids come shuffling out and there's Vivian just trucking along.  She was close to the back of the pack, and spotted me on the sidelines.  I got a big wave and she started trying to skate a little bit faster.  Then it happened - she fell.  Not unexpected, but she was the first kid in the group to fall.  She laid there for a moment, possible considering her options.  Then her little Bambi legs started to flail around and she got up all by herself.  The crowd burst into cheers.  My mom started wolf whistling.  Vivian was up and skating around again, triumphant.  Then she fell again.  Got up again.  Then the kids started to head back to the curtain and she fell.  Hard.  She fell backwards and her little minion hood fell off of her helmet.  She got herself back up and comically grabbed at her helmet to see if her minion hood was still there.  Realizing it was missing, she grabbed it off the ice and slammed it back down onto her helmet and kept on skating.  It was something that would have only happened to Vivian and it was hilarious.  I was laughing so hard I was crying.  I think she fell again, and at that point an instructor had to come out to scoop her up and help her get off the ice.  She was crying when I went to get her, she was pretty mad about her minion head falling off.  (Clearly, it was my fault.)

She went out there, and she did it.  And I couldn't be more proud.  Or more pleased that I ordered a DVD of the whole thing.

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Things to wear to Suicide Girls

Welcome to another edition of "Ashlie is crazily overthinking things and needs to just chill out".

I'm going to see the Suicide Girls next week, and I'm really excited.  It just seems like it will be a really fun, different thing to do.  True to form, however, I'm obsessing over what to wear.  What exactly does one wear to a burlesque?  Do you dress up?  Dress down?  Sex it up a bit?  Or does it even matter what you're wearing because no one is going to be looking at you anyway?  So many questions.

I've probably left it too long to actually order any of these things, but I threw together a Polyvore board of the things I have been considering.  In all likelihood, I'll end up just throwing a clothes tantrum the night before and then go out shopping for a new top in a panic.  We'll see.


Things to wear to SG

Things to wear to SG by ashliehawkins featuring a skater dress


Starting top left...

Bow Derek Dress from Hello Holiday - I've been obsessing over this dress for a while, and really just want an excuse to wear it.

Polite as Fuck Tee from Buy me Brunch - I love this shirt, but I'm worried about the oversized, drapey-ness of it.  That style doesn't usually work on me.  Plus it might attract more attention than I actually want.  I thought I would just pair it with a black skirt or jeggings, so that's why those are floating in there.

Good Enough to Eat and Good Enough to Illustrate dresses both from Modcloth - I found the Good Enough to Eat dress first and fell completely in love, but they don't have my size in stock.  Then I found the Good Enough to Illustrate dress and they have larger sizes in stock, but I would have to try a 1X and I haven't really ventured into plus sizes before.  I'm not sure how it would fit, and I'm wary of gambling on the fit when I would probably just end up being frustrated.  They're both so wonderfully tacky though.

Intergalactic Skater Dress and 80's Geo Skater Dress both from Forever21 - Now with Forever21 I'm pretty positive I would be in the plus sizes, seeing as how I can't even cram my foot into a pair of their sandals.  These are both the same dress, just different patterns.  They seem cute, but I've never gotten anything at Forever21 so I don't know if the quality is worth even trying.

There you go, that's all I got.  Send me your suggestions, or come and help me when I'm in the midst of a clothes tantrum next week.  At least my hair will look good.


Monday, 31 March 2014

Treats of the Week - Goodbye Smarch

March was quite the month.  I have to say I'm super glad to see it go.  But first, a few good things.


  • SUNSHINE.  Vivian and I went to the park after work today and it was so nice to just be outside!
  • Finding a good parking spot downtown is nice, but finding a good parking spot downtown that already has money in the meter is awesome.
  • I got a new external hard drive to hook up to my PVR, giving me an additional 300 hours of space for HD programming (or 1000 hours of standard programming).  Best. Decision. Ever.  I was also lucky enough to get a second external hard drive for watching downloaded stuff through my bluray player.  I'm in media heaven.
  • Vivian has been saying her own name finally, but she pronounces it "Widian" and it's adorable.
  • I'm watching the series finale of How I Met Your Mother as I type this, and I have a feeling it is going to make me cry before the end of it.
  • I finally got around to starting to watch season 3 of Sherlock.  I haven't watched the finale yet (gotta save something) but the first two episodes were SO GOOD.
  • Vivian had her skating carnival on the weekend, but it went so well that I think it's going to deserve its own post!
  • I had a very successful trip to the Columbia Employee Store on the weekend, where I got myself a nice classic trench raincoat.  There's something so nice about actually getting yourself something you really need.
  • I got my hair coloured last night and went back to a red, red like I had in high school.  The burst of colour is awesome, I love it so much.  Just what I needed to kick things off for spring!


Friday, 28 March 2014

Very Vivian - Dinner Date


Vivian and I have been spending a lot of time on the road lately.  And time on the road usually means a Happy Meal thrown her way while we're trying to get from Point A to Point B.  Last night though, I thought I would push my luck and try taking her to a real, live restaurant.

See, I don't like setting Vivian up to fail.  I try to avoid situations that I don't think she can handle, because it just makes things easier in the end.  Taking little kids to restaurants is always a challenge, so while I had taken her to restaurants when she was small, it has been on hiatus for the last year or so.  Things like sitting still, eating food instead of throwing it, and not melting down are not always things that Vivian excels at.

I decided to go to Boston Pizza, and it worked out so well!  I read her the riot act before we went in - we're going to eat our food, then she could have ice cream.  She has to listen to Mommy, or else we will leave.  Aside from one small incident where her bare foot somehow landed on the table, we had a lovely little dinner together.  We really lucked out by having a great waitress who helped Vivian put on a temporary tattoo.  Boston Pizza seemed to have some really great options on the kids menu, so I got her the chicken fingers and veggies, but ordered a side order of fries for us both to pick at and the waitress brought that out to us before the rest of our food.  Nothing fancier than fries as an appetizer.  

Who knows - maybe next she'll be ready to head to an antique mall with me!