Friday Five: In which I tell you to go read some other person’s blog

Jess and I in center, framed by our respective awesome little sisters.

Last weekend, when I wasn’t stationed on Julie’s back patio drinking icy cold beverages, I was sitting at the kitchen table of my childhood friend Jess drinking cheap beer and discussing all that is wonderful. Seriously, we covered it all (we were up until 4am). Somewhere between Laura Marling and La Fin du Monde, we began to recommend our favourite blogs to one another. Featured here are the blogs I suggested, plus a few others.

1. The Beauty Department
Can I make a confession? I’m a sucker for reality tv shows about beautiful, wealthy, somewhat air-headed, catty girls just trying to make it in this crazy world. I love the incredibly long shots of their emotionless faces set to music (thank you 30 Rock). I have every episode of Laguna Beach archived on my external hard drive, except for that weird final season where nobody from the original cast is there anymore. Original cast seasons only, guys.

I’m telling you this because blog numero uno is by Lauren Conrad: nemesis of Team Kristin (of which I am the only member). She’s joined by Kristin Ess and Amy Nadine to create The Beauty Department. In their own words, the blog is “for anyone who’s ever had a beauty question or gotten into a fight with a hair brush and lost.” If you want to watch someone get into a genuine fight with a hairbrush, come to my house while I’m getting ready for someone’s wedding/any formal event ever. Though technically it’s the brush that loses, since I usually end up chucking it against a wall.

2. Pink of Perfection
Me and Pink of perfection have been in a long term relationship for years and years. I’ve been a reader of this awesome blog since Sarah McColl first posted the lazy way to roast a chicken. It’s my go-to for simple recipes, 60’s style inspiration, and feel-good thoughts. Also, Pink of Perfection is featured in Martha’s Circle, which sounds like a secret and terrifying cult headed by Martha Stewart, but is really just a nice collective of lifestyle bloggers headed by Martha Stewart. And just as I’m a sucker for certain awful reality tv shows, I’m also a sucker for Martha Stewart’s hypnotizing mind-powers… I mean her lifestyle brand.

3. The Selby
Ever wish you were one of those hip people who has a well-designed, visually pleasing home that is also reflective of their personality and lifestyle in general? And they somehow manage to raise a child in it without anything getting messy or tacky-looking because their child only plays with wooden and cloth toys made by hand? Or maybe they garden on their roof or have a spectacular balcony overlooking the ocean, or a library with bookshelves that are two stories high. Oh my god, who are these people? Usually, they are people who are ridiculously rich, (and sometimes they are Pharrell Williams). Todd Selby is a photographer who takes photos of their drool-worthy homes and blogs them for your viewing pleasure (he also has a project called Edible Selby, which is restaurant themed). Now, can anyone explain to me why Pharrell Williams has creepy Family Guy art hanging over his stairwell? Anyone?

I have a strange fixation with people who manage to create a pastoral lifestyle for themselves without reaching their hands up to the sky and shouting “I MISS SHOPPING AT LOBLAWS!” They grow their own food, witness both birth and death, help out their neighbours and occasionally pop out babies in the comfort their own home. is about Ashley, a former model who moved to Tweed (if my memory serves me right) to live on a farm and start a family. This woman makes her own cheese, grows her own veggies, raises tons of tasty animals, and has really gorgeous tattoos. I was describing this blog and what I like about it to some friends and one suggested that in light of the green and organic movements, our culture is experiencing a wave of pastoral nostalgia. I think she might be right; this blog makes me feel like Edmund Spenser… at least until slaughter time rolls around.

5. Joy the Baker
Joy the Baker is another blog I’ve been reading for a very long time. This summer I decided to try and branch out in the kitchen – especially with baking. Baking is a strange, foreign territory that I didn’t often traverse due to a few failed cake attempts in high school and a decidedly flat batch of cookies in university, which the students on my floor strangely devoured anyway. Living on noodles and beer does that to you I guess. Anyhow, this summer’s goal includes a new endeavor every week, be it big or small. It might be a foray into curry, or it might just be a new cheese I haven’t tried before. Or it might be baking – and that’s when I turn to Joy’s blog. Her simple recipes are paired with gorgeous photos and topped with a healthy portion of humour. If her blog isn’t making me hungry, it’s definitely making me laugh. It’s tasty inspiration for all!

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