I just love love. And there are so many different types of love to celebrate. Romantic love sure is grand, but it’s not the only stripe on the rainbow of love. There’s the love we feel for brothers and sisters, love for our community, love for our pets and love for our fandoms. And most importantly, there’s the love we have for our friends.
I’d argue that platonic love is one of the thickest stripes on that rainbow. Friends are like a family that we choose for ourselves. They are the people that we select to surround ourselves with, to offer our support and to share our laughter. I’m so chuffed that there is now a whole holiday celebrating friendship: Galentines Day. Oh, you don’t know what Galentines Day is? That’s ok. I’m gonna let my buddy Leslie explain…
Now, I know that Leslie likes to celebrate her lady friends on February 13th, and that’s rad. But I like to do things a little differently. See, I have a lot of dude buddies as well as lady buddies, so I think that for me, Galentines Day is a celebration of all my friends, not just the lasses.
A huge part of Galentines Day is the gifts. You don’t have to be a Leslie-Knope-Level Gift Wizard to show your buddies you care this February 13th. Here are my top 5 picks for awesome-arse Galentines Day pressies.
I enjoy making knitted goodies for the people I love the most. And knitted socks are one of my favourite gifts. There’s something super special about reaching into your drawer and pulling out a hand-knitted pair of sockies to warm up your chilly toes. Knitted socks are like a hug for your feet, in a totally non-weird way.
Yummy treats are the perfect way to show someone you care about them. They’re delicious, they’re sweet and they take a bit of extra effort than a box of chocolates. What’s even better than home-made cookies? Making a batch and then inviting your friend over to enjoy them with a pot of tea and delightful conversation.
Comics make a super rad gift because they’re inexpensive, they’re lightweight so they can be sent by post and they’re loads of fun. Grab a few different titles and give them to a geeky mate to enjoy at their leisure. You might introduce them to a new favourite series and it gives them something quirky to enjoy with their morning coffee.
So many of us struggle to make time to do things for ourselves. How about giving your friend a chunk of time just for them? Massage vouchers don’t have to be crazy expensive, many places will offer neck and shoulder massages for as little as $15. Giving your mate that piece of paper gives them permission to take that moment for themselves and really enjoy a bit of pampering.
You don’t actually have to buy your friend anything to show them how much they mean to you. These days I find it so difficult to make time to catch up with all my favourite people on a regular basis. So when I do get a chance to hang out with a mate, it’s so precious. If you want to make someone feel really special, I suggest making a date to hang out with them. Whether you go out for a fancy meal, indulge in an activity or just have an old-fashioned gab-fest on your couch, giving them your undivided attention will show them how valuable they are to you.
What are your favourite Galentines Day gifts? What would you like to receive from your besties this Galentines Day?
Welcome to another Things I Love Thursday. In my opinion, Thursday is the perfect day to take stock of the things I’m grateful for and that bring me joy. By the time Thursday rolls around, I’m beginning to lose momentum from the long week behind me and I’m usually truly ready for the weekend. Taking the time to think about the good things from the past week really gives me a chance to look at things with fresh eyes.
This week I love:
What do you love this week?
I recently came across the Woohoo deodorant paste at my local health food store. I was in dire need of a new deodorant as my previous deodorant had all but given up the ghost. The lass behind the counter recommended the Woohoo paste and I took it for a spin.
I don’t remember the last time I got this excited about a deodorant. Maybe I’ve never been this pumped about something that gets rubbed on my armpits. But I want to draw your attention to this product today because I’m hooked on it.
Deodorant paste is not a concept I was really familiar with before I tried this product. During my teen years I used aerosol body sprays. When I started shaving my armpits I graduated to a roll-on to avoid the agony of spraying B.O-basher on my raw pits. And last year I started using solid stick deodorant. But this paste was entirely foreign to me.
The Woohoo paste comes with a teeny little spatula, which you use to scoop out a pea-sized bit of deodorant. You then work the paste between your palms and as it warms up it softens up and spreads. You then rub it into your armpits with your fingers. Let me tell you, I felt really weird that first morning, massaging the paste into my pits. But now it’s just a regular part or my morning routine.
Before I talk about how the Woohoo paste performs, I should take a time out to talk about the difference between an “antiperspirant” and a “deodorant”. See, a lot of us use an antiperspirant, which stops you from sweating. It does this by blocking your pores so the sweat can’t escape. A deodorant doesn’t stop you from sweating, but it does stop the sweat from smelling bad. Woohoo deodorant paste is a deodorant, not an antiperspirant.
It’s important to make this distinction because I am very used to antiperspirants. So it was a bit of a shock when I experienced wet armpits while wearing this product. My first thought was “oh crap, my deodorant’s failed” and I waited for the offensive stench to start wafting from my underarms.
But then….the stink never came. Even though I was sweating, I didn’t smell. It was fantastic.
Now let me tell you, I’ve put this deodorant to the test in some pretty harsh conditions. I’ve worn it on 40 degree days while I’m hanging out with no air conditioning. I’ve worn it to a performance review at work. I’ve worn it to a 12-hour punk concert where I danced wildly for extended periods. And in all of those situations, my armpits have been stink-free. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever found another deodorant that has held up as well.
I’ve never had any issues with the deodorant leaving residue or marks on my clothes. Even when I’m wearing crisp white, it doesn’t leave any stains at all. Once it’s rubbed into your armpits it’s invisible.
I also love the fact that the Woohoo deodorant isn’t heavily scented. I like to wear perfume and it’s irritating when my deodorant interferes with my scent of choice. The Woohoo paste has only the lightest scent, which wears off soon after you apply it. I got the Urban variety, which smells really fresh and breezy, like clean linen.
The Woohoo deodorant is kinda on the pricey side. It’s $17.95 for a 70g pot. However, I’ve had my pot for three months and I’ve used about a quarter of it. I reckon one pot will last me a year of daily use. I usually go through a stick of roll-on deodorant every three to four months. So this actually works out a tiny bit cheaper in the long run.
Best of all, this product is cruelty free and vegan. So no animals have to suffer for you to be stink-free. Everybody wins!
I really can’t recommend this product highly enough. I’m so flipping impressed with how well it performs and I just had to tell you all about it.
Have you ever tried a deodorant paste? Did it work for you?
While I love a range of sex toys, I’m definitely a vibrator girl at heart. There’s something about the steady buzz of a vibe that gets my motor revving in a way that a dildo or a plug never could. So when Tantus announced earlier this year that they were adding a wand-style vibrator to their line of toys I was chuffed. The rad folks at Tantus were kind enough to send me the Rumble to test and review.
The first thing I noticed about the Rumble is how lightweight it is. Wand vibrators have a reputation for being on the heavy-duty side. I picked up a Magic Wand at Kink Fest earlier this year and nearly toppled over from the heft of it. I can imagine my arm wearing out before I was even close to orgasm with one of those monsters! But the Rumble weighs next to nothing. It is easily the lightest vibrator in my toybox. This lightness makes the Rumble ideal for people who have limited mobility in the arms or wrists.
The shape of the head is another thing I love about the Rumble. While most wands have a rounded shape, the Rumble is flatter on top, almost like a hockey puck. While I thought this was kind of odd at first, once I began playing I appreciated this shape. Having a flatter head gives you a lot more options when it comes to sensation. If you prefer a broader surface area for stimulation, then you can angle the entire top of the head on the area you’re playing with. With a slight twist, you can use the edge for more pinpointed stimulation. I also like that the head is mounted on a swiveling base. The base absorbs some of the movement and makes it great for grinding against. Sometimes when I’m using a vibe for clit stimulation, it can feel like I’m just mashing it against my crotch. But the Rumble feels more like a massage. It stays on target and moves with you as you thrust and grind.
The Rumble has been advertised as ” A vibe for every body”. It’s meant to be non-exclusive in terms of gender, and it can be used on a range of body types and genitals. I do think it’s one of the more body-inclusive vibrators that I’ve seen. It’s not as feminized as a lot of toys on the market, which come in only pink or purple and feature butterfly, floral or heart motifs. I spent a long time playing with this toy, both alone and with my male partner. I usually use it for clitoral or labial stimulation, but it also feels lovely on nipples. For folks with penises, it can be nestled snugly behind the balls or run along the penis. It is light enough to hold against a clit for orgasmic fun during penis-in-vagina sex and it feels great when you buzz the base of an anal plug that’s firmly in place. It’s also great for solo play with a dildo or on it’s own.
In terms of vibration quality, the Rumble lives up to it’s name. The vibrations are really deep and rumbly. This toy is relatively quiet, although it does get a bit buzzier on the higher settings. I’ve read a few reviews that stated that the Rumble is not powerful enough. Now, the amount of power you want in a vibrator is a very personal thing. Nobody wants a wimpy little buzz against their clit. But every body is different and the level of stimulation needed varies hugely across the board. I’m sure that for some people, the Rumble may not offer the whallop they require. But for me, it works beautifully. There are three speed settings and I’ve never gone above “medium” during a play session. The Rumble is plenty powerful enough for me, and I like quite a lot of stimulation.
Let’s take a moment to look at the control panel on this toy. The controls are very simple and easy to use. The power key switches the toy on and off. The + and – keys allow you to turn the intensity up and down and cycle through the different vibration patterns. I like having the option of moving back and forth through the patterns, rather than having to cycle through the entire range to get back to the one you accidentally skipped. I am also a fan of the on-off switch, because it means you can quickly flip the toy off if someone knocks on the door, rather than having to hold down a function button for several seconds. The controls are conveniently placed so that you aren’t likely to accidentally press them during play.
The only thing that disappoints me about this toy is that it doesn’t have a travel lock. Most rechargable toys have a locking function, so they won’t accidentally start buzzing in your bag (causing embarrassment or worse: a flat battery when you reach your destination). I am in a long distance relationship and I travel often to visit my partner. Sadly the Rumble has missed out on every single trip, solely because it can’t be locked.
The other downside to the Rumble is that it isn’t waterproof. While I rarely take my toys into the tub or shower, I do like waterproof toys for ease of cleaning. It’s so much simpler to be able to dunk a toy in the sink rather than carefully wiping it off. However, the buttery-soft silicone cover on the head of the Rumble slips off, so you can thoroughly clean this part in the sink. The head is the bit that gets the dirtiest when I use it, so it’s awesome to be able to wash it under running water. The handle does get a bit grimy but I’ve found a quick wipe with a cloth is enough to get rid of any residue. The fact that there are no cracks or crevices for dirt to hide on the handle makes this a relatively easy toy to clean.
The Rumble is body safe and great quality. It retails for $129.99 plus shipping, which is pretty average for a wand-style vibrator. However, you can use the code NESSBOW15 at the checkout to get a bonus 15% off your order. Tantus also have a few attachments for the Rumble, which are all made of body safe silicone and offer a range of different sensations.
The Rumble has quickly become my go-to vibrator for solo play. I adore the lightweight design and the deep vibrations. The electric blue shade makes it stand out in my collection, and I really don’t own anything else quite like it. I truly recommend the Rumble for vibe lovers, anyone who is keen to try a wand style vibe and folks with hand and wrist injuries that find traditional vibrators bulky and difficult to maneuver.
Summer is here in earnest and the temperature has been scorching. Between the humid days and the sultry nights all I want to do is laze about in floating layers, read while stretched on on green lawns and wait for a breeze to lift the hair off my neck.
I am wearing:
My mermaid pedicure.
I went with super light makeup, because I knew that a full face wouldn’t last in the heat. Just a swipe of BB cream, a touch of concealer where needed, cream blush and eyeshadow and nude lipgloss for a dewy look.
I’ve had snakes on the brain lately. The night before last, I took a walk to my parents house and nearly stepped on a red-belly black snake as I crossed the road. It took a moment to realise that the snake was dead, and by that time I’d already had a mini heart attack. Snakes are a big problem here in summer time, although now that I live right in the heart of town, I rarely see any. They tend not to venture where there are too many cars or people, but this slithery dude must have been on the move, probably looking for water. I’m so pleased that I didn’t run into a live one, because they really frighten me. The closest I want to come to a snake is these two brass ones wrapped around my wrist.
So, the “official” FFF prompt for today was “My goals for 2017”. But as I already made a list of my new years resolutions earlier in the week, I thought I would skip back a week and write about the ways I evolved in 2016.
I am notoriously shy around other people. Not so much people I’m really close to, but with people I don’t know well I tend to shrink into the background and never speak until spoken to. This year I started attending gigs with my boyfriend and I fell into the same trap of waiting for other people to interact with me. During one particularly awkward show, I was sitting in an armchair at a pub in a room full of people. I was lamenting at how boring I must be and generally beating myself up for being such a goober.
It was in that moment that I realised that nobody was talking to me because nobody knew me. By keeping my lips zipped until someone asked me a question, I wasn’t giving anyone a chance to get to know me. Even though it’s difficult for me, I’ve really tried to make an effort to open up, participate in conversations with new people and actively seek out interactions. It’s done wonders for my confidence and has helped me make some awesome friends.
Additionally, I have pushed myself to reach out to some of my friends whom I would like to know better. I always feel worried that I’m bugging people if I get in touch with them, or that they’ll be creeped out by me. But the reality is that if they don’t want to talk to me, they don’t have to respond to my messages. So I’ve really made an effort to check in with my friends more often and reach out to new friends who I’d like to be closer to. And so far, not one of them has responded negatively.
In mid November I made the decision to try a vegan diet. I watched several documentaries about plant based diets, sustainability and health and they really had an impact on me. I was appalled by the way that animals are treated when they are farmed for food and I felt quite mad at myself for keeping my head in the sand about this issue.
Initially I thought I would just give veganism a go and see how I felt. I had a lot of concerns and I thought that taking a “let’s just try and see” approach would be best. And it worked well. I made lots of big changes to my diet and tried loads of new foods. I learned about adapting traditional recipes to make them vegan and I had a blast cooking.
At this stage, I’m eating what I call a vegan-ish diet. Because my family and my boyfriend aren’t vegan, I will occasionally eat a non-vegan meal with them because I’d rather enjoy their company than make a fuss over what food is served to me. I have also found that very few restaurants in town have any vegan options available, so when I eat out I just try to choose something as close to vegan as possible. I’m not aiming for 100% perfect veganism, I’m just trying to do the very best I can without stressing myself out.
Minimalism is kind of a buzz word at the moment, but I feel it accurately describes my current mindset. I have started to feel overwhelmed by the amount of “stuff” in my life. My flat is full of clutter, my to-do list is overflowing and I have been spending so much time maintaining and acquiring more things that I don’t have time to enjoy myself. In October I began a serious overhaul of my belongings and habits. I’ve been systematically cleaning out my belonging. I’ve focused on developing better shopping habits and eliminating mindless spending. I’m attempting to spend my time doing things that bring me joy, things that are useful and productive and letting go of those things I feel I “should” do.
I’ve been at my job for two years now, and it’s only in the last six months that I’ve realised that I’m feeling confident and settled in what I’m doing. I rarely have to ask for help, and I’m finding that my daily routine at work has a smoothness to it. I finally feel as though I know what I’m doing. I no longer feel like “The New Girl” and I’ve learned loads in the past two years.
2016 was the year I really got passionate about sex. I started to feel more comfortable talking and writing about sex. I wrote several blog posts about sex toys and BDsM. I attended Kink Fest and have made several kinky friends. I started asking for the sex I wanted and tried several new sexual experiences. I became passionate about learning about sex and sexuality from a variety of sources. I feel as though 2016 was an extremely sex positive year for me.
How did you evolve in 2016?