Girl with Moon

Finally surfaced above doubts, feeling above this, she came around
Cause she's a goddess, finally saw this.
And now you're back, trying to claim her cause she's gone and now without her
You're all alone, cause she's a goddess.
You shoulda saw this

BANKS - Goddess

Sundown-girlLate night doodle of this sexy girl, I had fun with her hair. Photograph of sunset from Rouge Park Beach, Scarborough.

Summer's sadly over, so I dealt with it the only way I could, by moving towards the sun. I migrated from my dark, chilly dungeon in the basement to a first floor room with big windows. I thought it's about time to get some sunshine after 2 years in the cave. I also took this opportunity to clear out my wardrobe and reorganized my closet. I was very determined to get rid of at least half of my clothing because I knew I'm just hoarding all the "maybe-but-really-I'll-never-wear-this" pieces that are in truth wasting space. If I do a clear out each time as the seasons turn, I should be left with a capsule wardrobe by next summer (Thanks for the inspiration Vivianna)! Less is really more isn't it. Other things that peaked my interest lately:

Loving: This double gold fern necklace design, hand crafted in London by a husband and wife team. Pet lovers beware, this 9am collection from Good After Nine jewllery too adorable.

Wanting: I love multipurpose items that you can use both indoor or outdoor, in both cityscape or mother nature. On the list to buy are these Cotopaxi backpacks and Rumpl blankets. Also, the otaku in me really want these cat ear headphones, you know, just for fun.

Listening: Year & Years, Sam Smith and Ed Sheeran are on repeat. They all have this soulful, melodic male vocal that's like midnight lullabies to my ears

Learning: To make lists. Not just to-do lists, but lists of things you've done well and lists related to #universe, #travel or even your #darkestsecrets. It's a good reminder of how you've established to be the person you are today and who you'd like to be onward.

Watching: The Mindy Project gets me through days where I just need a little more cheer and carefreeness. I first got hooked with this video, but the blog over at The New Potato is even better.

Reading: This girl and her stories are so down to earth, definitely worth a read over at Style The Natives. Every photograph from ThisIsPaper has been carefully composed and selected to tell a story, I love it.

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Pockets

Out of all the little pockets of Toronto, Annex is my favourite for sure. The vibe is amazing, with people filling the streets day and night. Plus, Korean BBQ and Kafka the cat is so easily accessible, it's the perfect place for therapy on a bad day. Speaking of having a bad day, I had to send my MacBook Air out for an expensive repair due to a mysterious water damage. I say mysterious because I have no clue how or when it happened, but that's life right? Things sneak up on you when you least expected it to. Other than mourning for my laptop, I'm also helping my little brother settle into his new college and prep for all the back to school stuff. Man, I got to admit, I do not miss school at all!

My aunty came into town for a weekend and we took her on a little Casa Loma tour. Just the other day, I had some quality BFF time on Toronto island, just chilling and catch some sun. All in all, other than sports and errands, I've been doing a lot of escaping and creating a lot of down time to re-evaulate my relationship, career and the next steps. I'm so happy that I made the time to clear my head or else I would've made every decision out of fear instead of love. If there's something that I'm feeling strongly about these days, it's gratefulness. No matter how crazy, dull or unexpected things get, I'm lucky to be surrounded by loving people that understands me and willing to lend an ear even when I'm a broken record. Truthfully, I don't need anyone to save me from anything, I just want them to be by my side while I work on myself. And for that, I'm grateful.

Seriously, this cover, this quote, this song and this speech brought me closer to the truth.

mocha skater walls garage path rust graffiti stairs dasies linen stare kafka castle aunty piano contrast sisters appreciating carving view couple shore

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Pink Hair

Happy Tuesday! I spent my Monday battling div floats in CSS, so that was "fun". Check out these illustrations from Hsiao-Ron that caught my eye. I mean, how can they not? Love the soft pastel palette and delicate depiction of these pink haired girls.

Everday's new. Sometimes there's excitement, sometimes it's uncertainty. Most of the time it's chaos, but I'm strangely at peace with myself. No matter what, my heart will be the compass and I'll follow it, wherever it leads me.

"Eventually, everything connects" - Charles Eames

peony petals river

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Kick Off

Some notable reads, eye candy and tunes to kick off the busy week ahead:

1. Django Unchained. Watch it, if not for Tarantino + Western combo, then watch it for Leo.
2. Sanpshots of Berlin through the lens of In a Pavilion blog.
3. I confess, I'm secretly an introvert, scoring 17/23 from the list. I'm just an awkward cookie.
4. Do you also fancy the simple farm life? Molly Yeh will show you how it's done.
5. Discovered Hiline. Alternative, more valuable Nespresso capsules for my fellow espresso addicts.
6. "Stooped down and out, you got me beggin for thread to sew this hole up that you ripped in my head" - BANKS. She's a goddess, truly.
7. Think tequila boozy summer, think margarita, watermelon and popsicles. Think of this brilliant recipe. And if that's not enough, check #popsicleweek for 40 more variation.
8. Dreams change, sometimes we need the hustle, the freedom. Sometimes we need the structure or another creative environment. Whatever it is, it's important to continuously soul search for the path that feels right for you. Kate's story really resonated with me.
9. Danielle's #truthbombs are like the fortune without the annoying cookie, plus you can deliver it straight to your inbox. I enjoy reading them every morning.
10. Finally, this Wild Culture mix: "I’ll say I told you so but you just gonna cry. You just wanna know those peanut butter vibes" - Glass Animals

egg-on-top Umami-fries Umami-burger Burger crave all week. Umami Burger on Union Street, San Francisco. That truffle cheese and shiitake mushroom!

This weekend, my aunty from New Jersey is visiting, plus there are a number of events that friends are hosting to make the most out of whatever's left of this hot Canadian summer. They say keeping busy is good, but sometimes being busy can also be the worst form of distraction. So I'm back to list making in my moleskin at the start of each day and beginning of each week. I've come to terms that I'll never be a routine kind of a gal and I never want to be, so it's crucial to set realisitc and achievable to-dos daily. Knowing how sporadic my day can be, it's been really helpful. What I'm really missing now is the ultimate to-do Android app that embraces the simplicity of TeuxDeux, one that I've loved when I still had the iPhone. I've tried many (Todoist, Wunderlist, Any.do), but nothing stuck. I'm currently using Pushbullet and love its ability to push list/notes/links to and from your desktop and mobile devices. What are you using to organize your to-dos? I'd love to hear them.

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Muir Woods

Where did July go? It seriously went poof in the air. Last weekend, the start of August was filled with so much excitement at Osheaga festival in Montreal. After seeing a sea of people and being herded like little sheep, it's nice to be back in solitude and in open space with nature. I've been waiting for the right moment to post these pictures, and the timing seems perfect now as I'd really appreciate some green in my life.

Aidan and I explored Muir Woods a while back. It's only a 30 minute drive from San Francisco and a magical escape from the city. I'll always remember how serene and magnificent it was to be surrounded by giant, tall redwood trees that stretches into the sky. We also went early enough to catch the morning sun ray peeking in. I can almost smell the forest as I'm reminiscencing the warm embrace of mother nature.

horizon onroad coast shine-through tallness shine-through2 ferns trunk shadow grass-closeup horizontals upwards straight-up skinny 4-trunks A little note to self: learn to "detach" and live in the present.

Detach from fixing the problem you claim yourself to be, because you're not that.
Detach any sense of conformity and instead, carve your own path.
Detach from over-planning and seeking control or else you will loose the real magic.
Detach any promises you've outgrown. Let go and move on.
Detach the guilt that often comes from any change so you can gain drive and focus.
Detach from what the world asks of you and find your own questions for yourself.

Looking back, July was the month of learning to "detach" oneself from unnecessary feelings. Specifically, break apart from associating one point to another. Stop at point A, put a period on it and break away. I had to refrain myself from making any "closure", because ultimately, in the end, you can't control the outcome of a future that isn't even here yet. So c'est la vie!

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Enjoying July

The image below was a photo manipulation project from... geez, years ago. I passed by this exact barn building yesterday where the picture was sourced and I had a nostalgic moment, so I went through my archive and dug up this image. Is it a gateway to a new world or an end of a journey? I'm not sure and I've already forgot what the intention or story behind this piece. Regardless, it's kind of reflecting how I feel at the moment. Just a paper boat going with the flow on a shimmering path and enjoying the scenic, magical view of it all.

mushroom gateway Here's a couple of notable things I've enjoyed in the past week:

Wearing: I thought it was time to change up the eye makeup game with less eyeliner and more natural eyeshadow shades with TheBalm's Nude'tude palette. So far so good!

Snacking: This recipe combined two of my favourite things in the world: greek yogurt + guacamole. It's so genius, I can't believe I haven't thought of it before.

Creating: Dabbling into a new studio software - Sketch 3. I'm hoping this can replace illustrator and improve the flow for future projects. It's been a smooth transition so far and all the features are very intuitive to use.

Training: West coast vacation mode is officially off and gym mode is on! I love how I can stuff all my essentials (phone, cards, keys) on the go in this flip belt without any hassle. It's great for running, which I'm training myself to get into at the moment. (5k by autumn?!)

Listening: I know you'll judge me, but G-eazy's my Drake substitute these days. Also, I couldn't resist Jeni's sultry voice. Then, to contrast, this string cover of Laputa is on constant replay as well.

Admiring: Mia Hollow's poems and pictures, alternating on her instagram feed. In terms of new blog discovery, I've been living vicariously and daydreaming about the island life through Corina's blog. She creates the most beautiful and fluid hand letterings ever.

With my sleep and diet back on track, my energy has also returned, so I'm hoping for more amazing finds this week. I hope you're enjoying your week so far as well.

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