September 2013 - The Dainty Squid
animals and nature

Lagoon Deer Park // on film

Monday, September 30, 2013

Exercising my need to drive took me to Sandusky last weekend. I found a neat cemetery I wanted to explore (more on this soon!) and looked around online for some other things to do while I was in the area because even I think driving two hours just to visit a cemetery sounds a little kooky. I found Lagoon Deer Park and the trip was officially on, I had to visit!
I love deer parks (duh!) but this one was different. The deer are kept in a large pen that you enter. On the edges of this large pen are other smaller pens where there are camels, donkeys and other animals. You're right in there with the deer. It was seriously the best. I've never been so close to so many deer. Even better than that I was the only person there at the time. I got to spend forty-five minutes alone with a ton of deer! It was dream come true.
Okay, so, the deer were probably only interested in me because I bought a bag of peanuts to feed them when I paid for admission but it was still really neat to have them basically swarm me.

Do you have a deer park near you? I didn't realize it was a thing, I thought Double Diamond Deer Ranch in Cook Forest, PA was an anomaly. Now that I know they're out there I must visit more of them!

Bonus bit of information : If you visit this place, bring a tote bag to put the peanuts in. The bags the peanuts are sold in are just paper bags and the deer will rip them right open. I stashed my bag inside my camera bag and none of them bothered it... ya know, after I lost half the peanuts on the ground within the first three minutes of being there.

All of the photos above were taken with a Canon T2 and Fuji 35mm Superia X-TRA 400 that expired in 2010.

hair and beauty

nail sticker FAQ & tips!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Nail stickers - I blog about them nearly every week and each time I get comments and emails asking the same few questions so I figured it might be helpful to write up a new post on these nail stickers I love so very much just to clear up any confusion there may be or any issues you might be having. 
Q.  Nail stickers? So, it's the whole design and I don't have to do any painting?
A. No, they're basically just stencils. I've found them to be way easier than using tape and you don't have to do any cutting.

Q. Are they reusable?
A. No, they are not. They're one time use.

Q. The stickers are peeling up my nail polish when I take them off. What's up with that?! 
A. Sounds like your polish might not be completely dry I always suggest painting designs with the stickers in two separate days so you're not rushed. Of course, you don't have to wait a full day but at least give your polish an hour or so.

Q. My nails are completely dry but my base coat is still peeling off. What do I do? 
A. This could be one of a few things. 1. You have a crappy nail polish. I'm certainly not a nail polish snob, I will always snatch up a 99 cent polish but there are some that are just not made very well and these will peel up when the sticker is pulled off. 2. Your sticker is too sticky! Easy fix - put the sticker on the top of your (clean & dry) hand and peel off before placing on your nail.

Q. The nail stickers are leaving a residue, what do I do?
A.  I'm not 100% sure why this happens, I've only had it happen a few times but here are a few things to make note of - Make sure you're doing the trick of putting the sticker on your hand before your nail to remove some of the stickiness before apply it to your nail. Make sure your nails are clean and dry. (I'm totally guilty of snacking and painting my nails at the same time, it usually doesn't lead to pretty nails!) If nothing else, wait for your polish to dry, and then go wash your hands with soap and water before applying the top coat. Sticky gunk comes right off.

Q. Why aren't my lines as crisp as yours?
A. The trick to crisp lines with these stickers is peeling them off as soon as you're done painting. This means polishes that aren't completely opaque on the first coat are far less superior when it comes to using the stickers.

So basically be patient, make sure each coat is COMPLETELY dry before putting down the sticker, and get yourself some great polish (I'm all about Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure, Essie & Zoya!) Set aside a little chunk of time to do your nails or do it over a period of a few days and with some practice you'll be doing your nails like a pro!
I'm sure there are many places to pick up nail stickers. The first ones I tried, I'm pretty sure, were from WalMart. But I've found that these ones are the best. Not to mention the shipping is super quick, even coming from the UK to the US.

I also highly recommend watching this silly video that Elycia and I made last summer for more tips on using the stickers. Good luck! Let me know if you have any more questions.

what i wore

what I wore : fall flowers

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

hat - thrifted
sunglasses - c/o Oasap
shirt - TJ Maxx
rings -  triangle c/o Spotted Moth, gem c/o The Northern Sea
overall dress - Forever 21
tights - Target
bag - c/o Oasap

Can I tell you a secret? I hate that overalls are in style right now. Don't get me wrong, I love overalls. I own at least five pairs. They're cozy as heck, and cute to wear around the house. But something about seeing them everywhere kind of drives me nuts. The only good thing about it though is they're becoming way easier to find. I've spent hours scouring thrift stores for ones my size and rejoiced in finally finding a few pairs that fit. But now so many stores carry them! Of course, I'm not down for spending too much money on them but I do still love to browse and stalk them until they go on clearance! Anyway, point of that story was that I was lured into Forever 21 with the idea they might have some overalls at a decent price. I didn't find any but I did find this adorable overall dress. I have a feeling I'll be spending the majority of this fall season in it.

For this post I teamed up with Fab to style items from their two top categories, jewelry and women's (clothes/shoes/accessories). I chose this adorable necklace and this set of bags. The bags are so great because a. that print is the cutest and b. the different sizes make the set really versatile. The biggest makes a perfect beach tote. The smaller two fit in my purse to hold all my miscellaneous odds and ends.

I'm also sharing a few more of my favorite items from Fab below. How incredible is that yellow backpack?! That color is killing me, it's perfect for fall! Fab also has a new "Smile Guarantee" which means free returns on any order that you're not happy with, no questions asked. If you're not already a member I highly recommend signing up and taking a peek around.
 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

Happy Wednesday! Hope it's sunny where ever you are in the world.

Another pupdate...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

I certainly don't blog about Klaus enough. Some of my favorite posts to look back on are the ones from right after I adopted Professor Stingray. Watching him grow in photos and reading all about his little quirks (almost all of which he still has!) is the best. I want to have posts like that to look back on about Klaus.

I'm an extremely visual person. It's more than likely that photos inspire me to write a post as opposed to writing a post and taking pictures specifically for it. Klaus is a ball of energy so pictures of him taken with something other than my iPhone are few and far between. But I'm now making it my mission to take more pictures of this pup and write more about him.
Where shall we start? Perhaps with the fact that he's tripled in size since the day he came home. At the emergency clinic on the first day he weighed a whopping 7lbs. As of the 13th of September he weighed 21.8lbs. I can tell he's gained since then too. In the last few weeks especially I've realized how large he's getting. It was like one day I woke up and he wasn't a puppy anymore. It's harder to pick him up now and forget carrying him around, that's definitely a thing of the past. That dog is solid!

Klaus facts :
He's lost most of his baby teeth, which I'm sad to report I didn't find any of!
He's gotten into the habit of rolling over on his back to show off his belly when you approach his crate to let him out. It's the funniest because he maintains eye contact and does it in super slow motion.
He still doesn't bark regularly which I couldn't be happier about. He's barked maybe a total of ten times.
He loves to be under things. When he was smaller it was all about being under the coffee table but now that he's way too big for that he's finding new things to be under. If you're sitting on the ground with your legs bent, you best believe he'll be under your legs. Every morning when I do my stretches he loves to run under me and lie down.
I recently got him his first tennis ball and that boy LOVES to run after it. Actually, he really just loves running. At least once a day he gets the zoomies, where he just goes nuts and races around the backyard.
He went to the beach for the first time this month. He was afraid of the waves but loved the abundance of sticks. I'm excited to take him back soon.
• He finally outgrew his first harness. I'm actually heading to the store to get him a new collar today. He's not wearing one right now and he looks hilariously naked. Hah!
There still haven't been any huge breakthroughs with the cats. They tolerate him a lot more than when he first came home but still no direct playing and definitely no cuddling yet. The cats no longer leave the room when Klaus comes trotting in. A few days ago I had Klaus out and was playing with him when I walked into the kitchen to spot Doctor Octopus laying down in Klaus' crate. Even if Klaus wasn't around, that still feels like a great step! Klaus normally thinks that Doctor Octopus is trying to play with him when he's swatting and hissing which is equal parts hilarious and sad. Poor guy just doesn't understand the cats are grumpy and don't want to wrestle with him.
It's been a blast so far. Having a puppy is great but I'd be lying if I said I was excited for him to grow up and calm down a bit. He can be a bit of a pain in the butt sometimes but I think we're making decent progress together. Soon I'd like to start him in some obedience classes.

On another note, does anyone have an recommendations for dog shampoo that actually leaves your dog smelling good? The biggest shock of having a dog is realizing they kind of smell horrible. Haha! Seriously though, I've tried a handful of shampoos already and within a day or two he's back to being a stinky dog. Having Klaus makes having four cats seem like super low maintenance, at least they can bathe themselves.

animals and nature

ladybug invasion!

Monday, September 23, 2013

With the weather cooling off, my beach season has officially begun. I like reading at the beach when it's warm but seriously, the beach in the fall is far superior. It's empty and there always seems to be neat things to find. A few years back I found all those dead monarch butterflies, and you know I love collecting and organizing beach trash. Last week I stumbled upon a TON of ladybugs. I don't think finding a bunch of ladybugs is all that strange. The bathroom in my parents home always had tons of ladybugs in it each fall but I've definitely never seen anything like this at the beach...
I obviously went straight to google when I got home to read all about why they're there. It's apparently a super common thing that's called exactly what it is - a ladybug wash up. There seems to be lots of mixed information on why this happens, you can read about some of the theories here.

I'm still finding ladybugs each day - around my house, in my car, in my camera bag, etc. I must have been covered in them when I left. I still can't even believe just how many there were. Oddly enough, I went back to the beach two days after I found all of these and there were only a few left there. No big clumps of them left, just some stragglers.
Did you know Ohio's state insect is the ladybug? I didn't but it sure seems relevant right now!

what i wore

what I wore : blue and green everything

Thursday, September 19, 2013

hat - thrifted
glasses - Martha c/o Bonlook
brooch - c/o Salty Star Designs
watch - c/o Tigerlilly Quinn
dress - c/o The Northern Sea
belt - from another dress
rings - c/o Lan Jewelry
shoes - Le Bunny Bleu
camera bag - Jo Totes

It seems as though I'm doing some serious colorblocking in this outfit. I was an accident, I swear! Kinda funny how everything matches though, right down to my hair. Guess it's just in my nature to pick things of the same color to go together! I'm a pretty cool over-sized kindergartener, right? Haha!

I'm so stoked about this kitty watch from Tigerlilly Quinn. Tigerlilly Quinn has suuuch cute things and at great prices but that cat watch has to be one of the best things ever. I've been looking for a watch for a little while, not that I really need one since I'm kind of attached at the hip to my phone, but I'm sure it's no surprise I'm always looking for more ways include quirky accessories into my wardrobe and this watch is definitely what the doctor ordered. Fritha, who runs Tigerlilly Quinn, is just the sweetest plus she has great style!

Hope you have a fabulous Thursday!

follow along @thedaintysquid.