Blue Jacket

I'm keeping it short and sweet today, I have had a long week of school-which was so great, I love learning!-, work and more work; so I cannot tell you how f-word happy I am that Friday is here once again!

And you all know that how much I love the weekend.

I also love this jacket, I've worn it all week. My friend Heather gave this jacket to me at the swap last weekend; she bought it for me at Value Village because the label says Bianca! She knew it had to be mine; and I'm very happy she did. I mean how could I resist those shoulder pads?!

Okay lovelies, have a great weekend, filled with late brunches with friends, sleep ins and anything else that fills you with happiness!



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As previously expressed, I love Swaps! I scored some seriously amazing duds from our clothing swap this weekend; and I am beyond excited to share them with you, in the form of outfit shots!

I swapped this jacket from my friend Caitlin, and it couldn’t be any more perfect. Although this jacket is a smidge too small- thus it can only be worn undone- my new favorite fall color is camel or tan or anything in between, so I was willing to make the sacrifice of having a jacket that can't be zipped!

Life is about tradeoffs.

This comfy, flowy t-shirt was swapped from my friend Sarah; and I have to say I have loved this shirt for a long time. Whenever Sarah would wear it, I would notice how it fit her so nicely, and secretly wish that I had one of my own; so when I saw this sitting in her “shop”, I thought to myself “I cannot believe she’s swapping this!”, and I grabbed it ASAP!

I went to Edmonton’s legislature grounds to take these shots, but there was some sort of Policeman parade or something, therefore making for some interesting looks from the crowd. But I felt amazing wearing this outfit because a) it is almost entirely swapped re: free and b) I love the way I look in it; and that alone is good enough for me!

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The Swap


First I must declare that I LOVE THE WEEKEND; it’s the best time of the week. It’s the time when I get to choose what I fill my day with, as opposed to weekdays, when most of my time is spoken for.

This weekend marked the first ever clothing swap between my girlfriends and I; and OH MY GOD, why didn’t we do this sooner. Every single one of us has been lamenting over how “over” our clothes we are; so we decided to swap; the idea coming from the Delightful Dozen- a group of my favorite personal style bloggers who swap clothes periodically.


The only rule was every girl had to bring a minimum of 4 pieces of clothing; and truthfully I was concerned that people would only bring their junk. But, as usual, my ladies came through! Our whole front sitting room was covered in clothing; we decided to set up “shops”, so that everyone would know who they were shopping from. I am still blown away by how many gem pieces of clothing were strewn about my living room; at one point I even stood on the couch and, at the top of my lungs, squealed “I LOVE SWAPS!”


We loved the clothing swap so much that we decided we should swap music and anything that's swappable; we even joked that we should swap men- just jokes though, we’re fun women, but not that “fun”.

I can’t wait to post all the new outfits I create from the pieces I chose; my closet is renewed!

And one more time for good measure…I LOVE SWAPS!

Pasta with Roasted Asparagus and Goat's Cheese

Isn’t it amazing how when life gets busy the first thing to go is eating? I work around food yet in the past 2 weeks, I have found myself ravenous despite food being everywhere. The irony that I feed people but forget to feed myself is not lost on me.

So upon some prodding from my mother to plan ahead, I decided to go to the Italian grocery to get the “plan” going. As an aside, I love the Italian grocery store, so many great deals and the deli is the best ever; although I could do without the 20 minute long queue and the deli attendant constantly correcting my pronunciation of Bruschetta, apparently it’s brou-sket-ah.

After perusing though a Martha Stewart cookbook, I decided to try a pasta- because I thought it would be fitting seeing as I was at the Italian center. Roasted asparagus, goats cheese, crispy crumbled prosciutto (an ad lib on my part), chives and pasta equals fast and delicious. Oh Martha, how are you so damned good?!

Roasted Asparagus and Goat’s Cheese Pasta adapted from Martha Stewart
1 pound asparagus, tough ends removed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
salt and freshly ground pepper
8 ounces dried short pasta
4 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 to 3 tablespoons snipped fresh chives
4 sliced thick cut prosciutto
In a large sauté pan, un oiled and heated to medium high heat, cook the prosciutto until browned and crispy. Once cooked place on a plate with paper towel and set aside.

Preaheat oven to 450°. Place asparagus on a large rimmed baking sheet; drizzle with olive oil. Roast until tender, tossing occasionally, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cut into 2 inch lengths.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to boil; add a generous amount of salt. Cook pasta until al dente according to package instructions.

Reserve 1 cup of pasta water, drain pasta. Heat a sauté pan over medium heat with the butter. When hot, whisk in the goat cheese, ground nutmeg and the reserved pasta water and cook until the goat cheese has melted. Toss in the cooked pasta and the asparagus. Taste and season with additional salt if needed. Garnish with fresh chives or parsley.

Note- I used white asparagus, which is why it looks like there isn't any at all.

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The New Do Debut

If you haven’t caught on by now, I love music hence The Saturday Sounds; and this past Saturday my roommate and DJ partner in crime Suzy and I DJ’ed a ladies night Funk jam!

I was a little more nervous than usual because a) I hadn’t practiced in a while and b) this was the first outing as the new hair-less Bianca. Even though I loved my new do from the moment the razor first buzzed, I was a bit nervous about what people would think. Would they hate it? Or wonder why I would deliberately cut my hair like a boy? I hate to say it, but sometimes I really care what people think. However, I am happy to report that all my friends- and even some strangers- LOVED IT! Either that or they’re all liar, but I’ll take it;)

I felt great that night because I had a fancy new do- that everyone loved; and I felt great in my outfit. Earlier that day Suzy, Caitlin, Katie and I went for a Saturday shopping spree so needless to say I had lots of choice when putting together my look for the evening!


Happy Friday! The best day of the week has come again:)

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Falling into Fall

As promised, a full embrace to the season that is Fall! In order for me to fully get into the Fall spirit, I need to see her in all her rust, orange and red glory- yes, everything on this blog that is inanimate will be referred to as “she” or “her”.

Edmonton's claim to fame is its incredible river valley; and when Fall descends, the river valley becomes a sight to behold. Taking pictures has really helped me to embrace the change that is Fall; how could I not? Fall is beautiful.

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Yesterday at 9pm Fall officially began; and I say, welcome beautiful!

The last of Summer- Biking

I never want to be one of those people who constantly complains about the weather; it’s so typical. So for the last time I will say, THIS SUCKS; it’s September 22 and it might as well be December 20; it’s cold, wet and rainy, but that’s just another day in Edmonton. But this year instead of bitching and moaning my way through fall and winter, I am going to completely submit to; but before I do, there is one last thing I want to look back and remember.
Summer around these parts means we roll on 2 wheels whenever possible; there is nothing better than a slurpee spiked with blush wine and cruising around the neighb, feeling the wind in my hair! I took her all over, downtown and back, through the river valley and to the corner store…oh yeah, we got around;)
I found her- my bike- on Kijiji for $60 and she is a true gem; she even came with the matching basket. I, even, left her outside from August 2009 until May 2010 and she was a) not stolen- to my very great surprise and b) in perfect condition, all she needed was some CLR and she was back in business! One of the things I will miss most about Summer is the ability to do so many activities outside, like biking; because in the winter the most outside activity I get is, the walk from the door to my car and vice versa.
Summer I will miss you; see you next year!
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I am NOT my hair

For my whole life I have always measured my beauty on my hair. When I was a child I wanted long, straight, beautiful "white" hair- which is a tall order considering I have the nappiest, kinkiest hair by nature. So the better part of my childhood was spent in a salon chair, with relaxer in my hair. Once, when I was 13, my mother did an at home relaxing treatment to my hair, and even though it was burning to high heaven- the sign that it's time to wash it out- I just HAD to finishing watching an episode of Frasier; the result, hair- my hair- falling out from the roots and running down the drain. When all was said and done, I was bald 4 inches deep from my hairline. It took years before I could bring myself to watch an episode of Frasier.

And then there was my braid phase, and although braids are easy for day to day living- literally wash and wear- having to sit in a salon chair for 8 hours while synthetic hair is fastened to my head and the resulting migraine, is not for the faint of heart; neither is the $350 price tag.

After years of braids, I had the loveliest afro ever; it was big and beautiful. But because the hair gods love to tease me, the beautiful 'fro did not last long. Somewhere along the line, my hair started to break, and my once beautiful afro became a broken, tangles mess; and when the 'fro was gone, so was my confidence. I realize how foolish it is to allow something as simple as hair to dictate how I feel about myself, but since I was young I have always craved "good hair"; and taken drastic measures to achieve it- why else would I put relaxer ie. lye in my hair.?

While I was in Montreal recently, my friends were badgering me to shave one side of my head, and I flatly refused; the thought running through my mind being " what would I be without my hair?" And that thought stayed with me for weeks. Why do I feel the need to be defined by hair? I am writer, photographer, dj, cook, friend and daughter; I am creative, witty, stylish and happy. None of which are measured by the strands of waste sprouting from my head.

I am Bianca; I am not my hair.

I know this because I cut it all off!!


And I feel great:)


Saturday Sounds

It would seem that the cold I had last week, decided to lay dormant all week- surfacing only for brief coughing spells- and then as the weekend, my favorite time of the week, comes again, the damn cold, comes again.

On any weekend I could weather this sickness storm, even though I am completely fed up with sickness- I cannot believe I used to fake this in elementary school- but this weekend is particularily busy- unlike last weekend where I could hermit away and "get better"; we are djing a funk jam this evening, and whenever one hand touches dj equipment, the other hand must have a drink in it. So seeing as I know full well that tomorrow is going to be a doozy- as I plan to be hung over AND even sicker than today- I thought it best to give you the musical goods now. Look at me all adult and planning ahead;)

This weekends mix comes from Grum, and contrary to the other mixes I have posted, this mix is for getting ready. It has a night feel, sort of like Grand Theft Auto- minus the prostitutes and auto theft; there is even a Hall and Oates cameo- and I LOVE me some Hall and Oates. I'm about to get ready for my evening and Grum is already playing!

Grum- 1 Hour Mix

Happy Saturday!!



Fall Date night

If I had all the money in the world, this outfit would be mine! A white dress is a dime a dozen, in my opinion, I could find one at Value Village in a red hot second; but these accessories are dreamy and for the moment that is where they will remain...but alas a girl can dream;)

But at least it's Friday, so Happy Friday everyone! The weekend is here; and, for that, I couldn't be happier:)

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Summer Round up


Summer is officially over in Edmonton, and although I will miss sundresses and sandals; what I’ll miss most is the casual feel that eating seems to take on. In the winter, I find it a chore to leave my house for anything, dining included; but as summer weather debuts, I cannot wait for lazy lunches and dinners outside, impromtu backyard bbq’s, picnics in parks and hung over brunches on patios with friends!


We have a very short window to enjoy the outdoors in Edmonton, so we capitalize.

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Bianca 2010 146
Bianca 2010 131
Bianca 2010 118
Bianca 2010 102

My friend Caitlin is a budding photographer, and I’m a willing practice subject. We spent a Saturday cruising around Edmonton, finding interesting picture taking sights!

The initial intention for the day was to collect a serious of jump shots; but it turns out, I' not very good at them. Sure, I can jump just fine; but my face ends up looking like I'm doing something gross- we shall leave at that.

After a long day of galavanting, we were losing light; so we did what any tired shutterbugs would do, we went for hot bowls of Pho (vietnamese noodle soup)- our favorite post photo shoot treat!

Good times miss Caitlin, I can’t wait to do it again!!!

Shirt- Walmart
Legging- Walmart
Boots- roommates closet
Necklace/scarf- H&M

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Black Coffee


I am an admitted caffeine addict; I love it in all deliveries, but I enjoy it best, hot on a cool morning. My day is known to hit the skids by 3 pm if I haven’t had my morning caffeine jolt.

Last winter, as a challenge to myself, I gave up caffeine for a month and a half; the first 2 weeks were hell, I had a splitting headache throughout and I was beastly in demeanor, to say the least. After the shakes passed first, things were going well; and then Costco happened. While I was on one of my regular Costco trips, they were sampling- as they often do- free gourmet coffee; I didn’t see any harm in having a small tester, but as that hot noire nectar billowed down my throat, I was in trouble. To make matters worse, McDonalds- that very same day- starting offering free coffee for a whole month. Now, I’m a lot of things, but foolish is not one of them; and it would have been foolish to pass up a deal like that. As an aside, their coffee is quite good- but that’s an aside.

In any case, I was back on the hooch after the free month, and seemingly more coffee hungry, it didn’t help that I had become obsessed with Viet Iced Coffees.

After spending my summer wound up by all the caffeine I consumed, I decided to swap (some of) the coffee I drink with green tea, the antioxidants alone made this a wise choice.

Rather recently I found a cool photo blog and the only subject is coffee, and it is right up my alley! Coffee porn if you will!

Because I believe in moderation, I have a link for the best Viet iced coffee; and for the days when coffee is a no no- a link to some lovely coffee pictures!

Coffee Notes
Viet Iced Coffee- via my food blog

Bottoms up!


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The Doors

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This weekend I was held hostage by sickness; Saturday was spent feeling like garbage, and this said garbage feeling prompted my decision to stay put on Saturday night; causing me to miss a goodtime- I could hear it, as my roommates hosted the after party.

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I was determined to use my Sunday for good, so I woke up, popped some DayQuil and set out to take some outfit shots and brunch with my family.

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I love cool doors; a statement door sends a message, like I’m in for a treat; kind of like a statement top. This top is good all on its own, without a stitch of competition, which is why I opted for black on the bottom. This door, however, is a door to a school; so for a lot of people the treat dies as soon as they cross the threshold. But I’m done school, so I can see the beauty in this door!

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My luck with outfit photos is really good, because once again I had balmy conditions for my shoot- done in the morning- but by 3 pm, it was pissing rain. It’s true, the early bird really DOES get the worm!

Shirt- Roommates closet
Shorts- Value Village jeans come cut offs
Boots- Value Village
Black tights- The Bay

Jacket- the Gap
Bracelets/ Hat- Value Village…noticing a trend?!

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Sunday Sounds

This weekends Saturday Sounds, is actually Sunday Sounds; sickness manhandled my Saturday, but Nyquil Day rescued my Sunday! And since the initials of today's post is still "SS", I'm ok with it.

This mix comes from Aeroplane- again. It's their Late July Mix and it is- once again- amazing; nu-disco, dance wonderfulness.

Late July Mix

It's good, trust me.


Color Me Bad


I was ready to declare that summer was over; but the holiday Monday came out of nowhere, it was hot- which is saying a whole lot considering for the past week the fall chill has been taking over. When I saw sunlight and clear skies, I showered, dug out my colorful purse, grabbed my camera and headed out the door; even though I was only going out to take pictures and run some errands, the fact that I could drive with my windows rolled down was good enough for me!


And then I got the call that there was a patio meet up going down; I sped there! Hanging out on a patio, sipping on a Caesar, enjoying what is surely to be that last days of the summer sun- in Edmonton anyways- is what I call perfection.


To get this shot, I went to one of Edmonton’s many green spaces; but truth be told, I felt kind of goofy taking pictures by myself, of myself; and the trails were sooo busy with outdoorsy Edmontonians walking and bike riding, I even heard a young boy child ask his mom why I was taking pictures alone- needless to say, I wrapped it up shortly thereafter.


It was a good thing I capitalized on the balmy afternoon weather, while I had the chance; because by 5:00 pm, the clouds rolled in and just like that, it was gone.


Sweater and shirt- roommate’s closet
Watch/ bracelet- Goodwill
Ring- mom’s closet
Scarf- The Bay
Sunglasses- party find...finders keepers!