Photo Diary: Dundas Peak

Larkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Dundas PeakLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Dundas PeakLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Dundas PeakAutumn Walks

There’s little more that makes me as happy as hiking does; give me some good pals, beautiful weather, scenic views and a camera, and you can be certain I’ll be in good spirits (obnoxiously singing to vocalize my joy, no doubt). This past weekend Zach and I decided to do just that, and headed for Hamilton to see some of his best pals, Nick, Jesse and Emma (but she was away), their ridiculously adorable daughter Dorothy. I don’t visit Hamilton much, but I think it’s well worth the trip every so often – aside from the lovely people who reside there – just for the views. Dundas Peak is stunning year round, but particularly so in Autumn with it’s colourful, changing leaves. We didn’t make it all the way to the peak, but what we did see was enough to leave me satisfied (that’s what she said).

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Photo diaries are one of my favourite series on the blog and you guys always seem to enjoy them, so I’m happy to finally (!!!) be able to share another with you. Hope you like them ❤
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Photo Diary: Marmora Mine

Larkspur Vintage | Marmora MineLarkspur Vintage | Marmora MineLarkspur Vintage | Marmora MineLarkspur Vintage | Marmora MineLarkspur Vintage | Marmora MineMINE MINE MINE!

Im still surprised to learn of stunning places scattered around Ontario. I shouldn’t really be at this point, there are many parts of Ontario that have surprised me time and again, that honestly, I should just come to expect hidden treasures all over this province. Marmora Mine was no exception. It was vast and overwhelming in the best possible way. It felt like a visual reminder of how small we really are on this planet. Looking down upon a mine turned quarry with the most beautiful crystal blue water it brought this song lyric to mind “Oceans never listened to us anyway.” – a little reminder that we belong to nature and it’s elements.

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The pit stretches more than 656 Ft deep and covers 85 acres of surface. Despite the fence surrounding the pit and the many signs indicating no trespassing, we went ahead and hopped the fence anyway (I in now way am recommending this. You may get caught and get in shit.) We hiked our way down the often very rocky terrain to water level and found an area that had a bit of surface to touch so we (I) could ease our (my) way into the water. Not far off from where we stood the ground drops off and you are left with hundreds upon hundreds of feet between you and ground level. The thought of that terrified me to the point that I refused to swim out passed the shore we stood on. Zach persuaded me to swim out with him for a moment, but once I actually did it I pretty much threw a fit as if I had no idea how to swim and he was holding me like an infant trying to ease my momentary insanity with his calmness….ya, drama queen is right. But aside from my clearly irrational fear of water depths, it was the most perfect way to spend my 28th birthday. We had a massive quarry all to ourselves, blue skies, a beautifully warm day, and I got to spend it with one of the best people I know and my favourite walking cloud dog guy. I am lucky in this life, I forget that all too often, but I really am.
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Mine’s Eye

Larkspur Vintage | Mine's EyeLarkspur Vintage | Mine's EyeLarkspur Vintage | Mine's EyeLarkspur Vintage | Mine's EyeHey guys! ITS BEEN AWHILE…

The short of it is I turned 28 yesterday and I have been kind of MIA from this space. Not from
the internet, goodness knows I’m all over snapchat (pushyspence) and frequently update my insta, but I haven’t shared much on here. It’s not due to my lack of interest in taking pictures (maybe writing though) or of the clothes I put on my body, I just think what I have been doing, I am growing tired of. I honestly applaud bloggers who have been creating quality content, consistently for years and years – that is hard work and dedication. The thing is, this is not my full time job. Yes, I do make money off of brand partnerships every so often, and I am currently working with a wine brand that has been taking up a lot of the time I would spend creating content for this space, but I also work a full time job as a clothing buyer, 8 hrs a day, usually 5 days a week. I often find myself too tired before or after work to want to shoot stuff for this space, or I would rather spend time hanging with friends and going on adventures. But, it’s Summer, maybe once the cold season hits things will feel different in that respect. Although I haven’t been posting much, I have been taking a lot of pictures…just not really of me. Zach has been taking pictures of me, however, but they are generally one offs and get shared to my insta only. That’s the short of it, I guess.

I definitely do not want to abandon this space, I guess I’m just looking to change it a bit since I clearly have not been feeling inspired to share anything here. I still remain passionate about blogging and taking pictures, and sharing my outfits and makeup and adventures, but I look at all of that a little differently now and I want this space to reflect that. I know it sounds rather vague, and to be honest, I’m not sure what I’m looking to change, really. I just hope you remain patient with me. I will always come out with quality content, that is something I will always give you, even if it is few and far between for the time being.

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These images were shot by Zach yesterday at Marmora Mine. Zach had been before with a friend and I was v jealous, so I told him thats all I wanted to do for my birthday. The Mine is so vast and filled with the bluest water I have laid my eyes on in a long while. It is very much trespassing to go beyond the fence that encases the mine, but clearly that did not deter us. Bad! We didn’t get caught, but I cannot promise you that will always be the case. I have a ton more images that I shot from our day spent there, so I’ll be sure to share those and talk more about this amazing place.

-WHAT I WORE –
H&M shirt, Levi’s shorts & Birkenstocks: Common Sort | necklace: ALDO
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photos by Zach Rose

Tulum Recommendations & Tips

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It is finally here, my Tulum recommendations! If any of you are heading that way in the future or had thoughts about it, I hope this post helps you. Hopefully I didn’t forget anything, but I very well may have, so if you guys have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comments below.
Larkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsStay: Hotel & Hostel El Punto

While visiting Tulum, I came to realize the importance of giving our money to businesses and the people who actually live in or near Tulum, which mean’t in the end, we felt pretty great about staying where we did, Hotel & Hostel El Punto rather than a resort. I felt we got a more authentic experience of Tulum because of the location of our hotel and the people working there – we were able to meet locals, get plenty of exercise and get anywhere we wanted by using their free bike rental service, grocery shop (I get v excited about trying foreign snacks!), walk to the “downtown” strip for food and shopping, get a healthy complimentary breakfast every morning, and check out the other hotels and businesses nearby. I will say however, this place isn’t a five star hotel. It’s clean, it’s vibe is very tropical Mexican and the service is impeccable, but our room was pretty much a bed (two actually) and washroom. We were fine with that, but if you are looking for something fancy, this may not be your place.

Other recommendations: Teetotum Hotel – we didn’t stay here, but we had breakfast and coffee there since it was close to where we were staying. It’s trendy looking while still feeling very Mexican, and the staff is super sweet and we enjoyed our food.
Larkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsEat: Anywhere!

I personally am a huge fan of Mexican food, so obviously eating in Tulum was heaven for me. I can’t speak to the other types of cuisine offered (wood oven pizza is a huge thing there), but every single meal we ate was great, without question. One of the things I loved most about restaurants in Tulum is everything is outside. Everywhere has coverage from the outdoors, but all restaurants are like sitting on a patio, and I loved that. I will list below the places we ate at, so I would give my seal of approval to all these places, but don’t hesitate to check out places that catch your eye, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
El Vegetariano: Vegetarian twist on traditional Mexican dishes. This place was delicious and so cute! Try the hibiscus enchilada and drink from a coconut (I didn’t, cause I don’t much like coconut, but Kristen did).
El Capitan: This place was right next to our hotel and looked pretty inviting. The staff was one of my favourite parts of this place – so nice and funny! We had both dinner and breakfast here and it was great. Breakfast felt a bit heavy, but I think because it’s so humid and hot in Tulum, eating a light breakfast in the morning feels better. *btw, there are two of these restaurants, we only went to the one located on Ave. Coba Sur
Antojitos La Chiapaneca: I think the tacos here work out to be about 50 cents or something. There are far more locals who frequent this place than tourists from what I could tell and the staff barely speak english, but if you want a real Mexican feel and cheap delicious food, this is your place. Avoid the lettuce on the veggie tacos, I forgot about not eating freshly washed veggies in Mexico and I got a case of diah butt the next day. Nothing horrible, but certainly an unhappy tummy.
Mateo’s: Very close to the beach and super fun inside. The staff were kind and the food was great. We went here after a long day outside, so to be honest I’m having a hard time recalling what I ate, but I liked it, I know that.
Panna e Cioccolato:  Ice cream! Delicious ice cream! We went back here several times. There are two locations, very close to eachother downtown…I’m not sure why, but they are the same thing, incase you get confused. The first time I got lemon meringue, which was delicious, but the next two times I got pistacchio and ahhhh, so freaking good.
Larkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsSwim: Public beaches, Resorts and Cenotes

We went to the beach everyday while in Tulum. You kind of have to. It’s so hot it felt like a necessity. We mostly swam at the public beach, but we also hit up a resort on recommendation and checked out a Cenote (essentially a lake).
Parque Nacionale Tulum: There are a few public beaches located in Tulum’s National Park. Bike there and you’ll certainly find a beautiful one. It’s best to get to the public beach in the morning – early afternoon so you can find a shaded spot.
Ahau Tulum: We were recommended to check out this resort. The beach is beautiful (but it is everywhere), the staff was nice, very accommodating and they have plenty of beach beds to lounge on. We got in for free, but it is my understanding that you are expected to buy at least a drink. We went back a second time and had lunch there as well, but if you are vegetarian, there are not many options.
Cenotes: There are plenty of signs for Cenotes in Tulum – it’s a huge tourist attraction, so they aren’t hard to find. We never got out to see the Grand Cenote (kind of silly of us, but oh well) but I have heard it is amazing, both from the internet and people we met on our trip. I am actually quite terrified of lakes, so when we did end up going to a Cenote we found while biking, I wouldn’t even swim in it. It looked nice though. Very clear water, no real reason to be afraid, I’m just a wimp. But if you aren’t afraid of fish or lakes, then check out a Cenote, and probably the Grand Cenote…maybe even do a dive there. We heard the dive is pretty intense and a bit scary, but absolutely thrilling.
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Visiting the Ruins was one of my favourite days. I specifically read not to go to the Ruins during mid-day, and we did just that. Oops. It’s very hot mid-day in Tulum and there is hardly any coverage at the Ruins…we found some, but it was hard to come by. So if you are going to visit, go in the morning, since they close by 5pm. All that aside, the Ruins are astounding. Thinking about how long these Ruins have been standing here as the world evolves and changes, it feels very humbling.  After seeing the Ruins, we were pleasantly surprised by the most stunning beach that just drops of the coast where the Ruins stand. Had we done a little research before heading there we would have known there was a beach, but instead finding it felt like the world giving us the wonderful gift of the ocean when we were feeling overwhelmingly hot.
Larkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & Tips Larkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsLarkspur Vintage | Tulum Recommendations & TipsExplore: Bike & Walk

Renting bikes really helped us get from A to B, but it also allowed us to see many things along the way. I just wanted to see Tulum and on bikes we were able to stop on a moments notice and take in whatever we found. We may have biked 10k in the wrong direction the first day, but we got to see a ton of things along the way and find a great place to eat. Rent a bike! They have them everywhere. You won’t regret it!
We also did a lot of exploring on foot. Seeing the neighbourhoods in Tulum was one of my favourite things. Some parts can be shocking, however. Tulum is not the poorest cities in Mexico, but it is very different from where I come from (and maybe where you come from), and some people and families do live in considerable poverty. I think it’s important to not ignore that part of it all. It’s easy to sit in a resort in a tropical country and forget that there are humans living outside of it with very little. Go see those parts, and if not, at least give some money to the local businesses. It’s hard for them to thrive when their city becomes a resort destination.

Other noteynotes!

-Take the ADO bus to get from the Cancun airport to Tulum. It takes just under 2hrs, but it’s the cheapest method, it’s air conditioned and they play a show or movie during the ride (we got to watch Toy Story 3 in Spanish!).

-Drink tons of water (from a bottle). If you are going to be as active as we were, make sure to always have water with you. The heat is real here and you sweat almost instantly upon stepping outside.

-You will need bug spray at night. The mosquitos will get you while you are trying to enjoy a meal or going for a walk.

-Research tipping in Mexico and Tulum. There are many people with very underpaying jobs (such as grocery baggers) that tipping really helps. When it comes to restaurant tipping, it is very similar to North America.

-Bring breathable fabrics to wear. One of the things I regretted was not bringing enough linen and cotton clothing. The things I was excited to wear I just couldn’t because they felt very uncomfortable on my body in the heat.

-Sunscreen! The sun doesn’t joke around here, so be aware of that. Kristen doesn’t burn easily, and she did in Mexico. We bought children’s SPF 50 and applied it several times a day. We went through 2 bottles by the end of the week.

Photo Diary: Toronto Island

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The same weekend we went to the cabin, we also spent some of our Saturday on Toronto Island to shoot images for the same job that brought us to Schomberg. I’ve been to Toronto Island a bunch of times – mostly for work actually – but never in the winter, that I can recall. It’s too bad there hasn’t been much snow in Toronto, I really think the island would be a sight to behold beneath a blanket of stark white snow, but disappointingly, it just looked like a lifeless landscape of grey-brown, for the most part (Toronto is just rather dreary looking in general during the winter, even when there is snow). It was also absolutely frigid this day, so it probably didn’t help that we were surrounded by water, and of course, me being me, I wore a skirt and tights like a true sartorial genius. But hey, I shouldn’t complain, it was a nice day despite the cold – I got to eat a delicious lunch at Brock Sandwich before we headed to the island, we walked on a frozen pond turned ice rink that was drenched in the golden glow of the sun’s rays (which was the most beautiful juxtaposition nature could throw my way and still makes me smile thinking about it) and I got to spend the day with my two favourite dudes. The sort of day that makes frosty winters seem less unbearable.Larkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto IslandLarkspur Vintage | Photo Diary: Toronto Island

*photo of me by Zach, edited by me