An Adventure to the Hospital

For the remainder of last week we continued learning new hair styling techniques along with popular hairstyles through the decades. We started working on each other instead of the mannequin heads.   

 I was paired with a girl who’s natural hair is actually really short but has fusion extensions, I was tasked with giving her a bridal style. She was very concerned about using heat on her extensions and I couldn’t use tension to do an updo because you would be able to see where they attached so it was a tricky task, but I think it turned out ok.

Saturday I had my first shift at my new job, it went really well, but it was a long day. After work I did my grocery shopping at a store near my work. When I got home I started making my self dinner, and thats when IT happened. my hand slipped and I sliced off the tip of my right hand index finger. I wont go into much detail for the squeamish readers BUT I ended up going to St. Michael’s emergency room, got 8 stitches and a tetanus shot. The doctor doesn’t have high hopes for the tip reattaching but I remain hopeful and positive.

 
I spent Sunday in bed with pain killers and ice for my finger, I was in a lot of pain every time I moved and the pain killers made me sleepy so I really didn’t do much. I was scheduled to work both Sunday and Monday but my new boss is super understanding and has given me the next two weeks off (even though I only have a doctor’s note for 2 days).

Monday and Tuesday were difficult days in class, we basically reviewed every thing for the exams at then end of the week. I had to relearn how to hold all my tools, my timing was awful, and nothing I did looked finished or good, I realize I have a handicap and its going to take time to heal. Every day the swelling and pain lesson, so thats good, but I have been rather clumsy and one time I hit it against some thing and it started bleeding…

Wednesday we had to present our face shape assignments. This one wasn’t mine but I thought it was a really good visual aid that no one else thought to do.

Thursday we had our written and practical exams, each one got more and more difficult in skill level and the amount it bothered my finger. I think I did well enough but I wasn’t 100% happy with my final piece; the up-do.

 
The weather has been getting better and better, and the vegetation is starting to grow, everything is beautiful.

  
 Friday we had our final hair project; Fantasy Hair. I did a roman/greek inspired look. It took me 5 hours, which Im sure could have been less if I didn’t have the finger issue. I was stressed the entire time…Im mostly happy with how it turned out, and really glad its over, haha.

  
     For the weekend I am just going to relax, I will also be attending Bobbi’s dance performance Saturday evening, yay!

Next week we start a new course with a new instructor, it will be with makeup (finally!) and eventually I have to get my stitches removed…

Until next time, and I will try not to detach any more pieces of my body…

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Week One of Many

  
Here is the contents of my hair kit. In case your wondering, yes, I did name her, Judy.

One week of school down, 31 left. Now that we are in the swing of things I have an idea of my daily schedule, I get up every day at 7am, I shower, make breakfast, make lunch, do hair, makeup, & wardrobe etc. It’s a 30 min walk to the school, on which I am asked at least once for money (If I had any at all I wouldn’t be walking to class!). I arrive at school 30 min before class starts so that I can set up my station, ask the instructor for individual attention, practice etc. We are in class from 9:30 – 4:30 with an hour for lunch and two 15 min breaks. After class it’s the same walk back, where I am asked for money yet again, once I’m home it’s a bit more random. Some days I crash as soon as I step inside, resting until I have enough energy to make dinner, after dinner I plot hour long intervals for theory, practice, rewriting my notes, and working on projects (if there are any). I try to be in bed by 11:30pm, then its rinse and repeat!

   

    

Here are some samples of what I have created so far.

I start work on Saturday & Sunday, I’ve been thinking it might be best to stick to only those days, that way I wont have to drag myself to work after class, lol. We will see what happens though.

Due at the beginning of next week we have an assignment about the different types of face shapes and how to ‘correct’ them with different hair styles. It doesn’t seem overly difficult, just time consuming.

At the end of next we will also have a fantasy hair project where we will have the entire day to create our very own masterpieces in hair. I have a one on one with the instructor tomorrow to discuss my project, at the moment I am thinking of some thing roman inspired.

Besides school not too much happened this week, Thursday I had my third leather working class, we finished our belts and began our last projects but that is all I will say, I don’t want to ruin the surprise. That day was challenging though, I only had half an hour at home before I had to catch the subway train, and once I returned it was almost bedtime, how time flys!

On Saturday Bobbi and I went to Queen st. W to find fabric for the costume I am creating for his theatre production, there are many shops and vendors in this area so we also looked at some inexpensive items for my fantasy hair project.

  
We spent the evening watching Netflix and ordered a pizza, I really didn’t have any food in the house so it was a good thing we split it. Sunday I did the tiniest amount of house work, then went grocery shopping. This time I took the make up bag on wheels, it definitely made my trip easier! I spent the rest of the day practicing different hair styling techniques and hair styles. 

Monday our instructor decided we were going to make a hairstyle from each decade starting in the 20’s working our way to the 2000’s. The last two days have been non-stop trying to get through all the looks and even after the second day we only just made it to the 60’s….

   

 

We also had a guest speaker today! The makeup department head and her 1st assistant (who is a graduate of CMU) from the TV show Reign, they had alot of information and advice for us, I really enjoyed their presentation.

Until next time,


Two Weeks In Toronto

I decided to lump two weeks of blog updates together since I really don’t have that much going on, mostly I haven been spending a lot of time with friends.

 
On Tuesday night we visited an Irish pub.

   

On Groupon I found a introductory leather working class, I have always been interested in learning. In our first class we made passport holders.

 
On Friday, Bobbi brought breakfast over! In the afternoon Terry and I went to a restaurant up the street, Rashnaa, we had the lunch special for $4.95, it was yummie and well priced. 

 
Later in the evening we celebrated the Easter weekend with a group dinner…my first one away from home. The we made cookies!!!

  
 

Sunday was a gloomy day, there was a loss in the family so I was pretty emotional and sort of went about in a weird state while trying my best to be there for my family as much as  I could. That night a raccoon visited, he left quite the mess too.

  

The next day Bobbi and I took a walk to the West side of the city and checked out “China Town” their were lots of little shops and markets. We happened to be walking past a temporary Game of Thrones store where we got to sit in a replica of the Iron Throne!!

  
The only interesting thing that happened on Tuesday was receiving a call from my new boss, thats right, I got the job!!

Wednesday I did a bit of grocery shopping and Thursday I had my second leather working class. We started making our very own belts, I’m very excited to see the finished product, so far I am really enjoying this craft.

  
Friday was quite the day. First I had my hair coloured and cut, I had to get the style fixed because the last person who touched my hair with scissors ruined my look and now I just want my long hair back…Afterwards Bobbi, Terry and I went to Sin & Redemption to taste “cherry beer” it is really sweet and the only beer I have ever been able to enjoy. We followed up with coffee and doughnuts from Krispy Kream…I am glad this store is far away from my apartment otherwise I think I would be gaining some weight haha.  

   

I honestly can’t even remember Saturday happening (no mother it wasn’t because I was drinking). On Sunday I cleaned the apartment from top to bottom in preparation for classes and I made a butter chicken dish that usually is my favourite but I made it wrong, it was actually a disaster.

Then IT happened, my first day of class, there was a lot of orientation to get through but it was awesome! My first class is Photographic & Studio Hairstyling, I have never been good with hair so I’m really looking forward learning proper techniques.

We received our entire student kit and some how I managed to bring it home, just to give you an idea the duffle bag weighed 30 lbs, and that wasn’t the only thing I had to bring home….on my 30 minute walk….Needless to say I was drained when I got home. There was so much to do and practice, not to mention prep for the next day, some times I don’t think I know what I am getting into, but I am enjoying it I just need to get a bit more organized.

  
So it turns out I will be returning home for 3 days during May to attend a funeral service, I spoke with the president of the school and he assured me I won’t be penalized for my absence, which will just make every thing less stressful.

 Lastly, today, I managed to get lost walking to school, yay me. Thankfully I had planned to be there 30 minutes early so I didn’t end up being late. Im realizing I am going to need a lot more coffee through out the day to keep me focused, on the plus side there is a Tim Hortons 4 minutes away from the school. Im starting to make connections with the people in my class and other faculty and students, I think this is going to be an amazing 8 months.

With that I need to get ready for tomorrow, until next time.


A Week’s Worth

In the last week a lot has happened. First I had to sort and pack up all my belonging that would be accompanying me, I some what haphazardly sorted the most important things into boxes, plastic bins and duffle bags. I’m pretty sure I unpacked and repacked each box at least three times in order to maximize space.
   
 

Despite my incredibly organized nature, for this trip I took a back seat for making the travel arrangements. I think I was in denial about leaving for the longest time and thats why I had been so disorganized. When I realized we had still not booked any hotels 2 days before our departure I began to freak out…It took several hours and 2 people searching for vacancies but it happened. The hard part was finding a hotel for downtown Toronto, that had parking available…for less than my first born child…

The night before we departed was supposed to be a test pack to ensure every thing could fit in the van but people showed up late and with more bag and boxes than we had agreed upon so the test pack never happened and I had to leave a bunch of stuff behind. Most of it wont be missed, for the exception of my cat, Cedric. He is the centre of my universe and was my main support for leaving home but there was simply not enough room and I know he would have been uncomfortable so I felt it was best for his health to stay. I am devastated by it to say the least. I didn’t sleep very much that night, I usually don’t before travel, but that night was filled with doubt and second guessing my decisions. I had convinced my self that I was insane for choosing to leave my home, family, and friends, the only thing that was keeping me going was that I knew I had gone to far to turn back now.

  
Departure day. 

  
As fate would have it there was a mini blizzard of sorts which made leaving the city extremely difficult and dangerous. The highway to get to the boarder ended up being closed but we managed to find away around the barricade (smart right?). We drove incredibly slow and because it had been closed there were no other vehicles on the road. At the boarder we were pulled over and escorted inside, we waited an hour to be processed and released. While there the power went out 5 times and an alarm kept going off, it was an interesting experience. After the boarder it seemed to be smooth sailing, the weather cleared up and the roads were dry, I believe we did 11 hours of driving between three drivers. We stopped in Madison, Wisconsin for the night at the Howard Johnson hotel, for the price this was a nice hotel, the room included a mini fridge and a breakfast buffet.

  
Day two. After our continental breakfast we set out for another 10 hours of driving, the traffic picked up as we neared Chicago and we had to pay nearly $11 in toll roads. We thought it was going to be an uneventful journey for the remainder of the day but an hour from the Canadian boarder, almost on cue, the van started having issues with the brakes gripping the front tire…when we were not braking. We pulled over and could smell burning rubber but there was no other signs of the problem so we slowly made our way to the nearest town where we luckily found a garage with a mechanic on shift. They stopped what they were doing and immediatley saw us, I was so worried that they would tell us we would have to stay the night and wait until morning lol. The mechanic inspected the vehicle and in his opinion told us it was safe to drive and that it was the brand new calliper that had to be worn in (or some thing).

  
So we got back on the road and it only started doing it again while I was driving (lucky me). By 10pm we made it to our new apartment and were given the keys, we quickly unpacked the van and then headed for our hotel.

The next morning we promptly headed to IKEA for basic furniture (a bed and table) then to Walmart to stock the shelves! It was a long day of shopping. Afterwards we had dinner at my favourite Thai restaurant, Salad King, dessert at a frozen yogurt shop, Menchies, and then back to the hotel with a few cans from the LC where we chatted the night away.

   
 

By this point we hadn’t really set any thing up, we had just been shoving things into the apartment and leaving so on Saturday we took the morning to set up a little but then it was time for sight seeing as my friends that had driven me to Toronto only had two days left before heading back. 

  

We ended up touring the Brewery District and the St. Lawrence Market. We saved the best for last, for dinner we went to Medieval Times were you are served a meal that must be eaten with your hands while you are entertained with a live tournament of knights and horses! It was a little bit expensive ($60/person I think) but worth going to, we had a blast!

   
   

On Sunday we got the apartment a bit more organized.

   
   

Then we went to the Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, fantastic as always but again a bit expensive ($30/person).

  
I was going to take the group to the CN Tower but it is expensive (roughly $30/person) just to ride an elevator…so we took pictures in front of it for free and carried on to what I can only describe as my favourite meal of the week.

  
Scaddabush. We had so much food and some how we managed to eat it all too! We recovered from our food-coma’s at the hotel while we watched the season finale of The Walking Dead, not only was it awesome that I got to see the episode (because I don’t have cable) but it felt like I was at home since that is sort of a household tradition.

Monday, the day of dread. My two closest friends were heading back to Winnipeg and reality was sinking in, it was no longer a vacation in Toronto. I was now officially moved out, on my own, in my very first apartment. Surprisingly  though I managed to keep my emotions at normal levels and continue on with the day (which really goes to show how mature I have become…I think, maybe I’m still delusional lol). Later in the day I had an interview, I hate interviews, and I don’t think I did well… Afterwards we found a dollar store and picked up some things for the apartment and organized a bit more. I made dinner for my self, which turned out…edible but I sense cooking is going to be different now that I am not making for 4+ people.

  
After dinner the land lord came to talk to use about the garbage system here, which is alot more complex than in Winnipeg. There are three bins; blue, green, and grey. Blue is for recyclables and there is no limit or charge for how much you put in but is only collected once every 2 weeks. Green is for any organic materials and will be turned into composte and is collected every week (apparently residents can then use this for their gardens if they wish). Lastly, grey is for every thing else and is considered garbage, this is collected once every two weeks and you are billed on how much you use. The idea is to make a more sustainable system and reduce how much gets put in landfills, in my opinion I think this should be implemented every where, though it will take some getting used to what goes in each bin. Later in the evening my best friend came over and once again we chatted into the late hours of the night.

My new bed is going to take some time to get used to, and the people above us get up really early….but this morning we got the internet hooked up Yay! Im not entirely sure what to do with my self now but I think I will do some house cleaning today, it seems every thing needs a good scrub down, that should keep me busy for a while. That folks is one week’s worth.

Until next time.


If Only I Am Brave Enough

In June 2014 I graduated with my Bachelors degree, long before that day I had been inspired by something else…

My practicum in Athletic Therapy was fascinating as an area of study but as an occupation it left me wanting more. This development left me feeling trapped in a world of endless possibilities, my future felt grey and boring.

It wasn’t until I received an email requesting assistance for a student film (March 2013)…Several volunteer projects later, I dove head first into makeup and special effects any where I could find it; books, magazines, movies, the internet.

I have always been fascinated with movie effects, especially in horror movies, it sounds silly but as a child I never realized they had specialized artists for that kind of work and dismissed it as an occupation. Plus my family always half-jokingly encouraged me into the medical sciences or government work.
Not to mention Halloween has been my favourite holiday since as long as I can remember. I remember going to a local store that sells party supplies and they were doing a demo where a man applied some gruesome torn flesh appliance to a volunteer. I was enamored that that was even possible…again it never clocked that maybe that could be something I could do.
When I first started applying for university I had come across specialized schools across the country that focused on makeup for film but at the time they seemed vastly out of reach financially and as I had just reached my 20’s I was not confident that I could make such a transition.

Now here we are several years later, many classes have been taken, much has been learned, challenges have been presented and obstacles have been climbed. I believe my self ready for a new challenge and I am about to take one of the biggest risks of my life.

I started researching potential schools in Canada and the USA back (January 2014), there are plenty of courses to choose from but picking the right one took dedicated research. I cant even remember how many I hours I spent looking at different schools but eventually it came down to 3; The Vancouver Film School, Complections College of Makeup Artistry and Design (Toronto), or Cinema Makeup School (Los Angeles).
Ultimately CMU won when I took a tour of the school while visiting a friend in Toronto (June 2014). Its hard to describe, it was just a feeling that this was where I needed to be. I spoke with the administrator, our meeting was like a stab in the chest, tuition was not cheap and there were no payment plans, all or nothing. There I was, just graduated, with an accumulation of university debt.

This gave me a goal, first I had to pay off my current debt before taking any more on, so I spent those next months working as much as I could. I’m a waitress so making tips really helped speed things along. My next setback was when I spoke to my bank about a student loan, I knew I wouldn’t get what I was asking for but to find out I was only eligible for a fraction of what I needed…I was devastated, ever so momentarily. My mom offered to cosign the loan with me, not only was my family OK with my decision but they were ready to support it too. Having the support of my family has been one of the greatest things I have experienced on this journey so far.

now I had a plan, I was going to work hard, save every dollar, and go to Toronto with enough money (not from the loan) to pay my rent and food for an entire year.

Every thing I had done up until this point was easy, by November it was time to apply. It was probably the scariest thing I have ever done. It was more than filling out a paper, it was making a decision, it was taking control, it was being accountable for all of it. Was I really making the right decision?
I guess that’s all so dramatic, if I really didn’t want to go all I would be out is my deposit money.
But what is right and what is wrong? I am not breaking any criminal or religious laws. Is it written some where how we are supposed to live our lives?

If only I am brave enough to take the risk…

When my acceptance letter arrived I knew there was much more to prepare.
Now I needed to find a place to stay that was within my budget, allowed a cat, was near the school and preferably didn’t feel like a dungeon. There are so many options, I used Kijiji to search adds, every day I received an email with the latest postings and spent hours trying to find the right place.
Eventually I found a renter who was not overly concerned that I was from another province or that I had no job once I arrived. My friend checked the place out for any obvious problems and after waiting almost three weeks they approved me!

There is still a lot to do…My one decision is going to affect so many aspects of my life including so many of the people in it. I am ready for the challenge, I am excited.

Until next time…


The End Of The Road Adventure

Today we are up bright and early because house keeping came knocking at 8:15am, they had not been informed that any one had booked our room…so we headed for the continental breakfast our hotel offers. I had a feeling our small town hotel would not compare to our big city breakfast, and boy was I right, we had a vast selection of white bread, Cheerios, and those tiny white powdered doughnuts…at least it was free?

After breakfast, if you could call it that, we packed up the car, checked out, and headed towards Albertville; the city of outlet stores. Only the exit for Albertville was marked differently than the others and we completely missed it, by the time we found a place to turn around we decided we had had enough adventure what with the zombies and police officers that we didn’t feel the need to go shopping. Plus this would mean we could get home sooner. We found a gas station, filled up on inexpensive gasoline and headed North.

I had also planned a few stops at some other giant animal statues along the route home, a giant pelican and otter, though with the idea of getting home early we decided to skip these as well. Our weekend had just been packed full down to the minute with activities and what not that all we needed was our beds.

At Fargo we stopped for gas and coffee, a little while later we stopped in Grand Forks and hit up the Walmart again to pick up some things we didn’t have in Canada, mostly weird flavors of junk food.

At the boarder we picked up some duty free items and sat in line for 45 mins to cross the boarder back into Canada. I guess I learned my lesson: don’t cross the boarder on a Sunday night around dinner time. From there it was smooth sailing and by 7:30pm we were finally home.

I have to apologize for the lack of photos for this blog, I was too intent on getting home.

Our time line for the day:
8:30 Breakfast
9:20 Checkout
10:50 Pass by Albertville
11:00 Gas stop, 20mins
2:05 Fargo, stop for gas 10mins
3:20 Grand Forks, Walmart shopping and gas stop, 40mins
4:55 Duty free at Pembina
5:26 Arrive at Boarder, 45min wait
7:00 Arrive in Winnipeg
7:35 Arrive home


Road Trippin – An Adventure With Zombies

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This morning started at 8:45, we headed over to the breakfast-room in our pj’s. The hotel had an amazing spread including a waffle maker, they also had some staples like bread, muffins, fruit, yogurt, and they had some hot items as well like eggs and bacon but they weren’t very appetizing. The room was very busy, I think it had some thing to do with being a Saturday morning, we couldn’t find a table so we asked an American couple if we could join them. It was definitely an interesting breakfast.

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After breakfast we packed up the room and checked out. Our next stop was courtesy of the Road Trippers app, the Wabasha Street Caves, a mere 20 min drive from Minneapolis to St. Paul. For $6/person (cash only) you can be apart of a 45 min tour of the caves. Our tour guide was a man named Ryan, he did an amazing job, I have never had a tour guide who was as enthusiastic and engaging, completely worth the drive and money.
The Wabasha caves are in all reality sandstone mines which were originally used as the first underground mushroom farm. During prohibition time it was used as a speak-easy (an establishment that illegally sells alcohol). It was rumored that the caves (back in the day called the Castle Royal Night Club) was a popular hangout for mob gangsters and a triple homicide was committed in the fireplace room where tourists can see bullet hole marks in the original brick of the fireplace. Today, you may recognize the products produced here as “Laymen Farms pickled mushrooms” and other pickled products. Terry and I thoroughly enjoyed this tour, if you are in the area this IS a must-see!

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The coffee shop next to the caves sells these weird troll/gnome things…very creepy.

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Terry had found a specialty shop online and wanted to check it out so after the tour we headed for the store and grabbed lunch at a nearby Subway, all of which which happened to be on the way to our next hotel.

Because the Zombie Run is at Spring Creek Motocross, about an hour and a half out side of Minneapolis, we booked a hotel in the small town of Zumbrota using Travelocity.ca (about 30 min from the run). The only thing was we couldn’t find the hotel because Google Maps instructed us to take a road which was inaccessible while traveling south. For the second time we had to ask locals for directions which actually made it easier to find.

The next set back was when our second hotel didn’t have our reservation…they told us we would need to contact the people at Travelocity and have them fax a copy to the hotel, I was about to breakdown because I couldn’t get hold of anyone when finally a different employee found the reservation on a ‘different system’. Because they had no idea about our reservation they had given our room away, instead they gave us an upgraded room. We also found out some thing interesting, online I paid about $75 for the room, but the hotel only received $55, the remaining balance going to Travelocity. In the future I may use Travelocity to locate a hotel but I will call the hotel directly to make the booking as it will probably save money.
Because it took so long to get the room reservation figured out we had to quickly grab our gear for the run and head out. Once we got to the site we got registered and picked up our swag bags.

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The course was 3 miles, with several obstacles, and lots of zombies! By the time our wave started it was excruciatingly hot, making a long distance run a lot more difficult. An interesting part of the run was that group-mentality kicked in when we encountered our first zombie on the course. We figured we had a better chance of surviving if there were more of us going in. This was one of the funnest things I have done in a long time, I am so glad that I took the time to put it all together and worth all the flak I took from work. After we completed the run we had some time to change and grab some food. After that it was time to head to makeup and wardrobe to start our zombie transformation.

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Being a Zombie was almost better than running the course, you got to scar people, make weird noises, and steal the runner’s health flags. I even had a bunch of runners come up to me after the run thanking me for the awesome job I did because it made it all the more real for them.

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Terry ended up getting pretty beaten up as a zombie because some of the runners got really aggressive, they stressed the importance of no contact but as the zombies made it more difficult to pass, the runners got more aggressive. Even with a few scrapes this was a fantastic event, I am for sure doing this again next year!

On our way back to the hotel it started raining and was super dark, right as we got off the highway we got pulled over by the state police…still wearing our zombie makeup and blood. They said we were driving below the speed limit and thought we might have been drinking. This came as a surprise to us since driving conditions were poor we didn’t feel comfortable speeding around on a road we were unfamiliar with. The officers were really friendly though and chatted us up about the run, apparently they competed in it last year, they even gave us better directions back to our hotel. It would be just our luck though that we would get pulled over while looking like we had just murdered some one.

Back at the hotel we had to clean off before we could go to bed, and again I needed to plan our itinerary for the next day.

Our daily time line today was as follows:
10:30 Check out
11:00 Wabasha Cave tour
12:15 Depart for specialty store and lunch
1:00 Depart St.Paul
2:05 Arrive in Zumbrota, check into hotel
2:40 Depart for Zombie Run
3:10 Arrive at Spring Creek Motocross
4:00 Begin Zombie run
7:00 Zombie makeovers
9:00 Second Zombie run starts
11:30 Head back to hotel