new site – starpixel.ca

movedstarpixelcaI meant to write this post a few weeks ago but the holidays got in the way and t hings go so busy! Better late than never right?

Introducing… starpixel.

After pondering it for the longest time, I decided to get a new domain name and buy me some web space. Something I haven’t done since I was in my early years of university so I’m re-learning a lot of things and learning new things, too! A lot has changed since I last designed my last web site.

For now it’s just a blog. I have set up WordPress and transferred all the posts from PixelatedStar over. This is the last post for this blog and all new posts can be found at starpixel.ca.

Hope to see you there!

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David’s Tea / 24 Days of Tea / 2013 / day 4

I’m so far behind on these advent calendar posts! I’ve had quite a few busy days. With meeting with our Marriage Commissioner, Christmas shopping, wandering around craft shows and making sure I get my workout in, I haven’t had as much online time as I would’ve liked these past few days but I am going to try my best to catch up!

day 4: forever nuts

day 4: forever nuts

Day 4: Forever Nuts – Herbal

FOR ALMOND LOVERS / It looks all normal when it’s loose. But steep it and you’ll see that it’s nuts. Within seconds, this tempting jumble of almond slices and chunks, apple bits and cinnamon bark starts turning a crazy shade of pink. Why? Because it contains a hint of beetroot. That’s what gives this rich almond tea its earthy depth and its all-natural signature colour. Deliciously nutty, decidedly addictive. Caffeine-free. (from davidstea.com)

Ingredients: Apple, almonds, cinnamon, beetroot and artificial flavouring. Contains almonds

davidstea_day4_2

Liv’s Thoughts

Day 4’s tea wasn’t new to me. My friend had introduced it to me months ago so I had tried this tea numerous times before and I have enjoyed it in the past!

Dry, this tea smells heavenly! It has a nice mix of nuts and spice. Just delicious and sweet.

Steeped, it’s still smells heavenly. This is a good “cold day” type tea so it is fitting that it’s found in the advent calendar! It doesn’t taste too nutty to me and it seems more apple’y. It could just be the ratio of the apple to nuts in my tea bag, I’m not sure. But it’s more sweet than nutty.

Overall, this is a great tea! How was your Forever Nuts? 🙂

davidstea_day4_3davidstea_day4_4

David’s Tea / 24 Days of Tea / 2013 / day 3

I didn’t get around to posting last night because we went to watch The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. It has been a long time since I have been excited for a movie and when it comes to the second Hunger Games movie, I was really super duper excited! I loved the books and thought the first move was great. Well, in the end, Catching Fire lived up to the hype in my head cause I really enjoyed it! It was true to the book. It was also nice as the theatre wasn’t very busy. I’m not sure if it was because it was a Wednesday night or if it was freakin’ cold!

Speaking of the cold, it’s perfect weather for a hot cup of tea. Day 3 brought me a tea that I’ve always wanted to try but never got around to it. Until now!

day 3: organic blueberry jam

day 3: organic blueberry jam

Day 3: Blueberry Jam – Black

WE’RE JAMMIN’ / Blueberries might just be the greatest fruit around – after all, they’re the star ingredient of North America’s favourite muffin. And hundreds of years before moms were making them into jams, jellies and cakes, blueberries were called “star berries” and revered for their healing powers. Another little known fact about blueberries is that they make for one great cup of tea – when you blend them with black tea, elderberries, cornflowers and stevia, it’s the perfect companion to your morning toast. (MK Kosher) (from davidstea.com)

Ingredients: Organic: black tea, blueberries, elderberries, pink cornflower petals, stevia. With organic and natural flavouring.

davidstea_day3_2Liv’s Thoughts

When I first opened the door, I was so excited! I love fruity teas (like Cranberry Pear)! Smelling the dry tea, it smells just like blueberries. I loved it and couldn’t wait to steep it! I brought it to work with me and made a cup that afternoon. (Not in the morning because I had to have a cup of coffee!)

And let me tell you, it really helped me get through the afternoon at work! Steeped, it smells and tastes just like blueberries. This tea was the Tea of the Month in June 2012… it’s so good that it’s no surprise they have kept this tea in their lineup! I will have to try this tea iced one day!

I absolutely love this one. If I didn’t have so much tea, I would definitely buy more!

Maybe I will start rating the teas. Just like how I do for my beauty product reviews. So with that being said, the verdict for DT’s Organic Blueberry Jam is five out of five pixel stars.

Have you tried Blueberry Jam? What did you think?

jam packed mini tins

jam packed mini tins

this tea smells divine!

this tea smells divine!

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a cocktail nailtini includes a rose gold champagne!

2 posts in one day?! WHAT?!

It has been awhile since I posted a beauty related post. So here goes. Might be a short one, though.

When I received my November 2013 “glam it up” ipsy glam bag (I know, I know, I still have to post an unboxing… um, unbagging… whatever!… entry), I was super happy with my bag. But what really caught my eye was the nail polish that was included! I had been looking for a rose gold polish for awhile now to no avail so when I saw Nailtini’s Champagne (Shade #124), I fell in love!

champagne is a pretty rose gold

champagne is a pretty rose gold

It is gorgeous! It truly is my favorite polish at the moment and topped off with Julep’s Polymer Top Coat, it did not chip for at least a week! It’s just starting to chip now and I put it on a week and a half ago.

It’s a great quality polish and it’s three free which is fantastic! I just love the color. The picture make it look more golden but in real life it’s more like a rose gold. This might be my go-to polish that is classic but sparkly! I have so much nail polish but I will definitely be using this one a lot. 🙂

nailtini_champagne_dec32013_2

David’s Tea / 24 Days of Tea / 2013 / day 2

Well, it finally stopped snowing here and I am just about to make my December 3rd tea! The kettle is on and I’ve hunkered down in front of the TV with my fiance to watch The Voice as the cat naps by the fireplace. Oh and to write in my blog!

But before we get to today’s tea (you will get that post tomorrow!), let’s take a look at what window #2 had in store for us.

day 2: alpine punch

day 2: alpine punch

Day 2: Alpine Punch – Rooibos

HIGH ALTITUDE TASTE / Have you heard of the barbegazi? According to Swiss lore, they are a group of furry little men that live high in the Alps. They are known for their long, icy beards and enormous feet, which they use to ski down hills and surf on avalanches. But how do they stay warm up in the frozen mountains all year round? We like to think it’s with a fortifying brew like this almond-scented rooibos, with apple, cinnamon, and ginger. If you see some very big footprints next time you’re out hiking, follow them to the barbegazi’s cave and see if they offer you a cup. Limited edition. (from davidstea.com)

Ingredients: Rooibos, coconut chips and rasps, apple pieces, cinnamon pieces, ginger bits, cardamom, black pepper, rose blossoms, almond flakes, artificial flavouring. Allergens: Tree nuts, coconut.

alpine punch prep directions

alpine punch prep directions

Liv’s Thoughts

A co-worker highly recommended this tea. When he first mentioned it, I thought it sounded familiar. Then I realized that it was the tea I wanted to try last holiday season but was sold out completely!

So this year, I knew I had to get some if it returned. And it did so I was happy. 🙂

The first time I tried this tea, I was at work and as it was steeping an instant message from a colleague regarding a project popped up on my screen. I don’t remember what it was about but it took my attention away from my tea. By the time I remembered it, I over-steeped it and I really didn’t like it because it was too strong.

After that first steep, I learned my lesson. I now steep it for the minimum amount of time and it was much better!

Yesterday when I brought the little tin from my advent calendar to work, I knew I had a 50g bag of this tea in my cabinet. But I HAD to use the tin. It’s just the principle of it. It’s 24 days of tea so I will make tea from each tin!

I will admit that I’m not a huge fan of rooibos teas. This is one of the very rare exceptions. I do like this tea but it’s not my favorite. I like the coconut and the almond taste. I usually stock up on my favorites (like Pumpkin Chai and Mom’s Apple Pie!) but I’m not sure if I will once my mini tin and 50g bag is done.

How was your cup of Alpine Punch? Share your thoughts as I’d love to know what you think!

And if you are around my neck of the woods, stay warm and stay safe!

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David’s Tea / 24 Days of Tea / 2013 / day 1

Happy December 2nd! I know I said that I was going to blog each day when I tried my tea of the day from my David’s Tea advent calendar but I started thinking… what if someone stumbled upon my blog who hasn’t opened their calendar yet? I don’t want to spoil it! Opening each window to see what tea was there each day is part of the excitement! It is an advent calender, after all. So I decided to blog the day after.

I never thought that I would be blogging about tea – of all things! But in the past year I’ve really gotten to love tea (read: obsessed) so I thought I’d try something different on my blog. Deviate from just beauty and also blog about other things. Like tea. So here goes!

day 1: white chocolate frost

day 1: white chocolate frost

Day 1: White Chocolate Frost – Herbal

WARM UP TO WINTER / Say what you will about winter, but it might just be our favourite season. We love getting good and chilly out in the snow. And warming back up with a comforting drink is even more fun. So we created a cool, creamy drink that brings together everything we love about the season. It has peppermint for a burst of freshness. White chocolate for comfort and warmth. And pretty peppercorns just to make you smile. Sweet, comforting and refreshing, it’s a warm hug and a cool winter’s day – all at once. Limited edition. (from davidstea.com)

Ingredients: Peppermint, white chocolate (sugar, milk powder, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, natural vanilla), pink peppercorn, stevia leaf, natural sugar flavoring, artificial white chocolate mousse flavoring. Contains milk and soy.

Liv’s Thoughts

I will admit, this is one of those teas that I see in store but never tried. So I was super excited to give it a go! This is an herbal tea which make it great for in the evenings when caffeine is not an option. (Like for me who will stay up well past her bedtime when she has to get up super early to go to work!)

I had a cup (and made one for my fiance in the process) of this tea yesterday when I was playing around with my new webhost’s cPanel and waiting for the impending snow storm to begin. We didn’t get nearly as much snow as forecasted but I still wish I had higher boots for stomping around in the high snowdrifts that built up on the sidewalks and residential streets today! Anyways, back on topic…

My first thoughts about this tea was that it’s nice. I am not usually a peppermint tea fan but it was not overwhelming and it was pleasing.  In my opinion, it makes a good dessert tea for after dinner. I am not sure I would buy more to add to my already overflowing cabinets of tea (I have one overflowing at home AND another one at the office!) but I do like this one.

What did you think of White Chocolate Frost? Love it? Hate it? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

white chocolate frost - a great after dinner dessert tea!

white chocolate frost – a great after dinner dessert tea!

enough for a few cups of tea!

enough for a few cups of tea!

white chocolate frost

white chocolate frost

24 days of tea. david’s tea style.

It’s that time of year! Tonight we put up the tree and decorated as we watched Elf and had cookies and tea. It was a great evening! And speaking of tea…

The holidays are approaching and tomorrow is December 1st! Why am I so excited that it’s December 1st? Well, because I get to start opening doors on my advent calendar!

When I was a kid, I used to have a chocolate advent calendar. One chocolate a day, everyday until Christmas. Not a bad deal! But as one grows older, tastes change. While I still love chocolate, this is a nice change! So here goes. This is my advent calendar this year…

24 teas in one month!

24 teas in one month!

24 Days of Tea! That’s exciting, no?

For the last year or so, I’ve been a bit of a tea fanatic. So this is the perfect advent calendar for me! Follow me for the next month as I attempt to post every day to share a different kind of tea every day.

Do you have the David’s Tea advent calendar? Are you excited to drink some tea?

topbox – november 2013 prive box – givenchy

For the past few months, there really hadn’t been many prive boxes that had caught my eye so I’ve been opting for the regular Topbox. I believe the last prive box I received was the Benefit one in February. So it’s been awhile.

I will admit that I was excited to see that Givenchy was an option when we received our November wish list email. And as I read more and more negative reviews on the regular November Topbox, boy, was I hoping that I would luck out with the Givenchy box and get it!

This past week, I received two purple Topbox packages. I will admit, I wasn’t too sure why I had two… until I remembered that I took part in the Chatelaine offer. I was on pins and needles as I was opening each package. The first one I opened was the Chatelaine Bonus Box (a separate post about this one later)… and the Givenchy Box!!! I was SO excited to see that I had the Givenchy box and I was so happy with everything that came with it. It is one of the brands that I would see and wonder about… but never actually bought.

givenchy topbox. november 2013.

givenchy topbox. november 2013.

Without further ado, the contents of the Givenchy Topbox!

givenchy goodies!

givenchy goodies!

1. Le Rouge Lipstick – 103 Brun Creatéur
This is the product in the sneak peeks on Facebook that really got my attention! I will admit, I was not a lip junkie until recently but I was really intrigued by this lipstick. Brun Creatéur is a dusty rose color, which is what I usually use anyways so that makes it perfect! Plus the size of this deluxe sample sized lipstick is perfect to keep in your purse for touchups throughout the day. Fantastic! It came in super cute packaging so I really had to share some pictures.

the details. retail: $38 CDN, $36 US for 3.4g (full size) – topbox sample is worth $16.76 CDN, $15.88 US for 1.5g.

topbox_nov2013_givenchy_3topbox_nov2013_givenchy_42. Noir Couture 4 in 1 Mascara – Black Satin
Okay. So here is the deal. I have too much mascara. WAY TOO MUCH MASCARA. So at first I wasn’t to thrilled that I was getting another mascara, however, after reading up a little on it, I’m actually quite excited to try this one. It has a very interesting brush wand where the brush is made up of three balls. Plus, it claims it is a “4-in-1” mascara which will give you: volume, curl, length and conditions. I likely won’t try this soon (I’m still using a couple of different mascaras at the moment) but I will likely write a review when I do.

the details. retail: $35 CDN, $32 US for 8g (full size) – topbox sample is worth $17.50 CDN, $16 US for 4g.

3. Dahlia Noir – Eau de Toilette
This has a very nice flowery scent – and this coming from someone who isn’t a fan in the first place! It comes in a super cute bottle and is the perfect size for travel or to keep in your purse.

the details. retail: $80 CDN, $70 US for 50ml (full size) – topbox sample is worth $8 CDN, $7 US for 5ml.

4. Gentlemen Only – Eau de Toilette
As you can probably tell from the name, this is for men. 🙂 It is a small foil packet so I have no idea what it smells like but I’m sure I’ll find out eventually. I will give this one to my fiance.

the details. retail: $67 CDN, $59 US for 50ml (full size) – topbox sample is a small foil packet.

I’m giving my November 2013 Givenchy Topbox a 5 out of 5 pixel star rating.

What did you receive in your Topbox this month?

Topbox is available in Canada for $12/month + taxes. I purchased this beauty box using my own money.

first ever target canada haul! (plus lush and murale too)

In May 2013, a number of Target Canada locations opened her yet… can you believe I never set foot in one until last weekend?

Shocking, I know.

Seeing as this was the first time I set foot in Target Canada, I was super excited to check out the Sonia Kashuk and Pixi items! You can’t find either brand anywhere else in Canada. And because of this I went a tad crazy. Okay, so… more than a tad crazy. Maybe even a bit overboard. Whoops! I didn’t get anything from Pixi but stocked up on the Sonia.

As a side note, I did notice that a lot of cosmetics were close to being on par with Wal-Mart so I think the appeal for me is mostly going to be for Sonia Kashuk and some of the products from the It’s a 10 hair line. I noticed that the Pixi cosmetics were pretty messy and people had opened the boxes up.

So here we go, here is my first ever haul from Target Canada. Ta-dah! (Oh and Lush and Murale, too.)

target canada goodies!

target canada goodies!

Continue reading

the holidays are not the same without lush’s rudolph!

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer… he has a shiny nose, y’know?

I was going to wait until I launched the new site to write this review but I am so excited about this product that I just couldn’t wait!

Last week I stopped in at Lush to see what those fresh face masks were all about. They swatched three of them on my arm – Love Lettuce, Oatifix and a holiday limited edition called Rudolph. I will be honest, I had a very difficult time choosing and went back and forth a few times. But in the end, I chose Rudolph. I figured, it’s only available during the holidays so now would be the time to try it!

Picking a limited edition can be a good or bad thing. Good because it’s the holidays and it’s fun to try new holiday products! Bad because if you fall in love with it, it won’t be there after the holidays. So which one is it? Good or bad? Well, let’s move on to my review and I will answer that question later.

lush fresh face mask - rudolph.

lush fresh face mask – rudolph.

Meet Rudolph. Note the shiny nose. 🙂

As Rudolph is a fresh face mask, it does not contain any preservatives and needs to be refrigerated. It is described as “A soothing, balancing mask with fresh cucumber and calming calamine powder” and the directions show that you have to apply the mask to your face and then place the red jelly on your nose just so you look like a red nosed reindeer. What a novel idea!

shiny nose.

shiny nose.

great directions lead to shiny noses.

great directions lead to shiny noses.

I tried this mask a week ago and I also put it on tonight after my post workout shower. It’s a Friday night in and it was a long week at the office so why not? A little R&R never hurt anyone.

When I was putting it on, I noticed that it has a rather thick consistency which can make it a bit clumpy and difficult to spread evenly on your face. Next time, I am going to try to add a little bit of water to see if it helps. The instructions say to leave the mask on for 5 – 10 minutes so I left it on for 10. When it was time to wash the mask off, it took a little bit of effort but it was worth it. My skin never felt better! My face felt fresh (likely due to the cucumber) and soft. I then put on my trusty toner and moisturizer to end.

sorry so fuzzy.

sorry so fuzzy.

So to answer my question from before, I’m leaning towards this being both a good and bad thing. Good because I just discovered a great product! Bad because it’s only available during the holiday season. Extra bad in this case because you can’t even stock up for the rest of the year because it will spoil.

That being said, I am going to enjoy it while it lasts and hope it returns next year! Perhaps when this disappears, I will switch over to Oatifix. That was my second choice.

I’m giving Rudolph 5 pixel stars out of 5.

This product was purchased with my own money.