With Earth Day approaching we’ve accumulated our favourite eco-friendly products so you can help the world in more ways than turning off the faucet while you’re brushing your teeth. From water to clothing, we’ve got you covered so you can help the environment this Sunday!
Weightless Hydration Coconut Water collection. This collection includes the shampoo, conditioner, and hydration oil! The natural formula is sold in eco-friendly bottles with recycled post-consumer resin. And they’re great items to pick up to treat yourself this weekend- double win!
Flow sources their water from a sustainable source in Ontario! All of the three flavours also come in bottles made mostly from paperboard with plastic lids derived from sugarcane, making them both recyclable and renewable. Have you tried the new flavours? Flow now is available in both Lemon Ginger and Cucumber Mint!
Nothing says Earth Day like getting outside and being active! Check out these items to help you have #goodtimesoutside this weekend:
Nalgene Everyday Water Bottle. Reusable water bottles reduce the amount of plastic water bottles!
Men’s Iconic Hoodie. Made of 100% organically grown cotton, which reduces energy demand, global warming potential, and amount of water used!
Women’s Rya Cardi. Made from organically grown cotton and Tencel Lyocell, a environmentally friendly man-made material produced from tree pulp.
V Element Volcanic Minerals Mascara. You will definitely want to try this amazing new mascara! It’s formulated with earth-based materials including volcanic water, Snowflake Obsidian, Clear Quartz, Aquamarine, and Pyrite (all delivering volume and length with an intense black colour)!
Color Protection + Sea Mineral Collection. This collection includes the shampoo and conditioner, using a formula with sea botanicals like Minerals, Algae, and Sea Kelp! The set is also sold in post-consumer recycled packaging.
What earth day inspired product do you want to try? Tweet us (@natashankpr) and let us know!
Links of London recently introduced new charms to add to their stunning Afternoon Tea Collection! The charm additions include the adorable daisy, strawberry, cupcake, and sugar cube (which is made of solid-sterling silver, sprinkled with a generous helping of 216 sparkling pave diamonds)! To create the perfect Royal tea-inspired Sweetie Made-To-Order Bracelet, mix these in with the collection’s miniature British biscuit charm, and traditional teapot, cup and saucer charm!
To celebrate the new charms for their Afternoon Tea Collection, Links of London hosted guests for Afternoon Tea at the Windsor Arms Hotel in Bloor-Yorkville!
Tea Etiquette Expert, Lisa Orr, taught guests the differences between afternoon tea and high tea, and how the Royals enjoy theirs! (The Queen loves Earl Grey with a side of Chocolate biscuit cake).
Along with finger sandwiches and pastries, the afternoon featured a candy bar where guests could fill up their Links of London gift bags with their favourite British sweets.
Of course, the afternoon wasn’t complete without a Pop-up Made-To-Order Bracelet Bar! Each guest was complimented with a Links of London iconic Sweetie Made-To-Order Bracelet that they could customize with Afternoon Tea Charms of their choice! They also had the option to add an engraved Disc Charm and were given the chance to swap sterling silver rings with rose gold vermeil, yellow gold vermeil or rhodium rings for a bi-metal look.
What’s your favourite Afternoon Tea Charm? Comment below or tweet us (@natashankpr) to let us know!
Canada celebrating 75th anniversary of National Volunteer Week
How will you give back?
2018 marks the 75th anniversary that Canada has celebrated National Volunteer Week. First organized in 1943, it was initiated to celebrate women’s volunteer efforts to support the war effort. Since then, Canada’s volunteer movement has exploded. Now close to 13 million Canadians contribute over 2 billion hours each year to more than 170,000 non-profit organizations across the country. That’s the equivalent of 1 million full-time jobs. The theme for this year’s National Volunteer Week, which runs from April 15 – 21, is: “Celebrate the Value of Volunteering – building confidence, competence, connections and community”.
Create a life that feels good on the inside. Work hard and help others.
How true. Ask anyone who has volunteered and they’ll tell you that they receive far more than they give. There’s something almost magical that happens when you volunteer. Volunteering provides so many positive benefits. It increases confidence, self-esteem, social connections and lower rates of stress, depression and even blood pressure. It simply makes you feel good. Researches have coined the effects the happiness effect.
“If our hopes of building a better and safer world are to become more than wishful thinking, we will need the engagement of volunteers more than ever.” Kofi Annan, Ghanaian Diplomat, Nobel Peace Prize winner.
Extraordinary things can happen when you join with people who share your passion for causes you believe in. Consider some of the recent volunteering phenomena like Me to We (founded in 2008 which now supports and raises millions for 7,200+ local and global causes) and the most recent activist volunteer movement of NeverAgain MSD started just months ago in February to pressure the U.S. Congress to introduce gun control reforms. These are just two of countless examples of volunteer-initiated efforts that are helping to change the world. Much like a job, getting the most out of volunteering requires that you do your research to find the right opportunity that matches your skills and interests. Here’s a few websites to help get you started.
Find the best volunteer opportunity for your skills and interests
Volunteer Canada (https://volunteer.ca) is a great place to start. With boundless resources and a link to provincial associations of volunteer centres across the country, the site also offers a fun interactive quiz to help you pinpoint what type of volunteering opportunity suits you best. https://volunteer.ca/english/questions.html
Take your skills abroad
Interested in volunteering abroad? There are lots of organizations that will help you coordinate a trip abroad to countries in South and Central America, Africa or Asia, paired with meaningful volunteer experiences. It’s a great chance to learn about another culture and country while giving back. With a database of 800 international volunteer organizations and 3,500 program reviews, they’ve done the research to find top volunteer abroad opportunities. The volunteer work I do with Artists for Peace and Justice (APJ) has enabled me to learn so much about the incredible spirit, hope and resiliency of the Haitian people. To help you find and fund your volunteer abroad trip, check out Volunteer Forever (www.volunteerforever.com).
Learn more about volunteerism in Canada
If you want to learn more about the volunteer sector in Canada, check out Imagine Canada (www.imaginecanada.ca). Given the huge impact that volunteers have in Canadian society (with 2 million Canadians working for non-profits and charities, representing over $135 billion), it’s becoming one of Canada’s biggest areas for job growth. If you’re thinking of a career in the non-profit sector, check out Charity Village (www.charityvillage.com) which posts job opportunities in the volunteer and non-profit sector. All charities need expertise in such areas as events management, fundraising, communications, finance, project management plus many others. Charity Village also offers learning and training sessions and webinars to advance your skills.
The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.
We all have skills and we all have interests. And when the two come together and you’re able to make a positive difference, it feels amazing. Whatever your interest is, somewhere, a charity needs your skills and passion to help them. Why not step up and give back? Trust me, the experience will forever change you for the better.
Do you volunteer? Why and how? How do you feel it has impacted your life? Tweet me @NatashaNKPR or leave a comment below.
Did you forget to make plans for the weekend? No worries! There are tons of great events that you can check out. We’ve put together a little Weekend Guide for you, so take a look and call your friends!
Need a ride? Make sure you download the Beck Taxi app for a quick way to get around the city!
This weekend stop by TNT Fashion in Yorkville Village for their trunk show featuring Toronto jewelry designers,J.Y.Gao and Monoxide! Shop the collection and stock up on some spectacular pieces for your spring looks.
In the mood for some good food? Momofuku Toronto has joined Pusateri’s Champagne Bar in Saks Food Hall in the Toronto Eaton Centre! Open for a limited-time (until Momofuku finishes their third floor renos), the pop up will feature a new exclusive and DELICIOUS menu created by chef Paula Navarrete and team.
Watch the JUNOs this Sunday! The Canadian Grammys are taking place this weekend in Vancouver, hosted by the wonderful Michael Buble! There will be some amazing performances so grab some snacks and invite your friends over for fun night in. Tune in to CBC Sunday at 8PM EST!
What will you do this weekend? Comment or tweet us (@natashankpr) and let us know!
How will you mark International Women’s Day this year?
For me, the greatest influence begins at home
As long as I can remember, my family has always celebrated International Women’s Day. Every March 8, my father would give my mother a beautiful bouquet of flowers. It started when they first got married before my sister and I were born and has continued to this day. I asked my father once why this particular day was so special that he wanted to honour it with a gift to my mother.
He said it was his way of showing how much he loved, supported and respected my mother and the way she was raising my sister and me to be strong, independent, resourceful women. He felt it was important to mark the occasion of International Women’s Day with a symbolic gesture in celebration of an important event.
Perhaps because he was raised in a female-led household (with just his mom and sister as his father died during World War II) my father has always believed that women are equal and deserving of the same rights, responsibilities and rewards as men. In all the interactions I’ve witnessed my father has had with other people – men and women from all backgrounds and walks of life – I’ve always been struck how respectful, kind, friendly and fair he’s been, without fail.
I realize how lucky I am to have been raised in a family where both my parents believed that two little girls could do anything they dared to dream. They encouraged us to pursue our goals and not let obstacles or challenges deter us. They taught us the importance of giving back to our community and to pay it forward with the same respect that they showed each other and us. Although not perfect, I believe my parents taught my sister and I well.
So in thinking about this year’s International Women’s Day, an annual day when people the world over come together to focus on women’s issues and achievements, it may seem overwhelming to think what one person can possibly do to advance women’s rights towards a more balanced society with 50/50 equality. That’s an ambitious goal! For me, as it’s always been, the road to equality begins at home.
As much as we should change laws, institutions, pay and workplace culture (and we should) the one thing each one of us can do most easily begins at home within our immediate family. When my son was born years ago, I knew I wanted to raise a good man who valued all people as equals. I wanted to raise a man like my father who shared his traits of kindness, compassion and empathy. As I look at my son today, fully grown and starting his career, I feel immense pride for the man he has become.
And I realize that of life’s greatest accomplishments and greatest area of influence, it rests within one’s own family and immediate circle. That’s where the most impact and positive change can occur. And if you do it right, the ripple effect grows bigger and stronger.
So I wish each of you a happy International Women’s Day. Take the time to celebrate the women in your life and remind yourself how each one of us can influence and support those closest to us and in turn, support all of us.
Happy International Women’s Day! What does International Women’s Day mean to you? Tweet me @NatashaNKPR or leave a comment below.
While International Women’s Day is about celebrating the achievements of women who have paved the path for us today, it is also about the women that surround us, and who empower us, everyday. Every woman and man has a role, whether that’s by raising their daughters to be strong and independent (or their sons to be respectful and supportive), or by leading movements to show the world and our leaders what change needs to occur. Today, we recognize and show our appreciation for the women who work to create a better world for all of us.
Some of the NKPR team submitted their responses for what woman, or women, they admire. Take a look at the list below to see what powerful and influential women inspire us everyday:
Kath: Leandra Medine is my forever girl crush, career inspo and life inspirer. She’s passionate, creative, an industry leader (who’s closet I would die to raid), successful and does everything with a side of humour. Also, she prides herself on wearing pants as little as possible…
Fiona: Ellen Degeneres – a trailblazer. One of the funniest comedians of all time. She was shunned in Hollywood after being brave enough to tell the world who she was. In that heroic moment, she let millions of people know that they too could realize their own truth and own it. She told us all that it was ok to be true to yourself. Her career suffered immensely for years, but made probably the most successful comeback of all time – inspiring to everyone, wants to only do good in the world and for people to be kind to one another. Through her show, she arranges to help families overcoming obstacles, arranging hundreds of thousands of dollars to various charities and makes serious differences in ordinary people’s lives. She is absolutely incredible in my eyes.
Rebecca: I am inspired every day by my mamas – for balancing work-life and home-life, making family a priority, raising good, smart children and for always being there for anyone who needs them. It might sound cheesy, but both of my mamas have the ability to always get it all done and it’s something I truly admire.
Tiffany: As a little girl growing up I was obsessed with the Spice Girls, not only because I loved pretending to be Posh Spice when I sang song to “Wannabe”, but because the Spice Girls enforced the notion of “Girl Power” that stuck with me from a very young age and still sticks with me today. The Spice Girls sent out a message of “girls can do anything” and they can! Stemming from my love for the Spice Girls, today I’m truly inspired by Victoria Beckham. Throughout the past two decades she has always been a powerful leader, an example of a SUPER successful female entrepreneur, a trail blazer, and on top of all of her accomplishments she’s a mother, which I find truly inspirational and someone I aspire to be like. Plus, I love her style. 😉
Mel: Dr. Leena Augimeri, my mom! She is the Director of SNAP® Scientific and Program Development & Centre for Children Committing Offences – Child Development Institute and also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Toronto. She specializes in working with children under 12 in trouble with the law. She is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of tomorrow’s leaders, with a special focus on children’s mental health. And she’s an absolutely amazing mom!
Bunmi: Mine is Harriet Tubman. More people should know about Harriet Tubman. I did a project on her in grade 4; I think it was life-changing. She was strong, principled, powerful and resourceful against all odds. She was a survivor. She has been my hero ever since.
Tweet us (@natashankpr) and let us know what women you admire! 🙂
An Outrageous Event
with Annabelle and Hayley Elsaesser
We’re throwing it back to last week’s bright and bold pre-launch event for the new Outrageous Collection! A collaboration between Canadian Beauty Company, Annabelle Cosmetics, and Toronto-designer, Hayley Elsaesser, the Outrageous Collection is a limited-edition selection of 10 vivid lipsticks which launched officially this past Monday! If you know Hayley, you’ll expect striking colours and prints that POP- and that’s what you get! This was one of the most visually pleasing events to boot, with every corner offering something fun to do, wild clothes to try on, or beautiful artwork to view.
The lipsticks each feature packaging and shades designed and hand-selected by Hayley herself, as well as a non-animal tested, fragrance and Paraben-free formula enriched with hydrating ingredients! A fun note- the sheer, frosty, and gold-flecked Going Bananas shade (an online exclusive) can be used as a transformative colour when layered on top of others, or even as a highlighter! The 10 shades are $10.95 each and are now available online, with limited shades in-stores.
Hosted in her boutique shop on Queen Street West, the event showcased Hayley’s signature pieces, which guests could shop as they previewed the collection and enjoyed some killer music. (The DJ was seriously on point with her music selection perfectly suiting the bright and bold atmosphere). The space also featured beautiful prints created by photographer Nastia Cloutier-Ignatiev (@nastia.jpg), featuring some of the Outrageous lipsticks!
Of course, guests were invited to not only get a taste of the collection, but of some delicious treats with specially made cocktails, cookies, cotton candy, and even adorable pink waffle-burgers!
Between snacks, guests were treated to fresh manicures with an added POP from Hayley Elsaesser nail wraps, as well as makeovers (with Annabelle products of course)!
No event is complete without a photo booth! Placed in one of the change rooms, Guests were coming in and out for snaps with friends throughout the evening. There were gigantic cut-outs of lipsticks, making for silly and fun memories- even Hayley couldn’t resist getting a few photos!
Overall the event was a hit and a perfect way to celebrate the launch of such a ___ range of lipsticks. Make sure you check out the products and place an order before they’re gone! Tweet me (@natashankpr) with the name of your favourite shade (or even what YOU would name your own collection)! 🙂
NEED A NEW SHOW TO WATCH? HERE ARE MY RECOMMENDATIONS!
When I can get a few moments to relax at home, I love to catch up on some TV! I’ve put together a list of what I’ve been watching recently that I LOVE! Take a look and let me know what you’ve seen.
GRACE AND FRANKIE
I love just sitting in bed and binge-watching Grace and Frankie- it’s my go-to when I wake up on a Saturday morning!
THE FINAL YEAR
A high recommendation is this documentary that covers Obama’s last year in office. It’s truly fascinating and a must-watch!
MY NEXT GUEST NEEDS NO INTRODUCTION WITH DAVID LETTERMAN
If you’re looking for something different to watch on Netflix, try David Letterman’s interview series. I recently watched the episodes with President Barack Obama and George Clooney- they were fascinating!
I’m finally all caught up on The Crown! I love seeing how they depict each member of the royal family (especially who they cast)!
TED TALK – THE SURPRISING INGREDIENT THAT MAKE BUSINESSES WORK BETTER
Finally, I have LOVED this Ted Talk from Marco Alverà. It’s all about FAIRNESS! My key takeaway is, if your compass was fairness, you would always make the right decision. (I think we could say the same with ‘kindness’)! Watch it here.
Have you watched any of these? Leave a comment or tweet me (@natashankpr) and let me know (and also if you have any recommendation of your own)! 🙂
This past Wednesday the NKPR team joined forces to celebrate Valentine’s Day in a meaningful way- by showing and giving love to Toronto communities. This year we really wanted to focus on the homeless population, especially as this winter has been one of the coldest on record! We focused our efforts to volunteer at four amazing organizations: St. Felix Centre, Good Shepherd Ministries, Sistering, and Ve’ahavta. Together, their services work to support individuals who are battling very real issues in Toronto (and all over the world), including homelessness, addiction, malnutrition, mental illness, and so much more.
The FWords Podcast also taped an episode in the St. Felix kitchen during the lunch service, where we talked with Brian Harris, Executive Director of the St. Felix Centre, as well as the Ve’ahavta Outreach Worker, Andre Hermanstyne. Stay tuned for the episode airing next Tuesday, February 20th!
St. Felix Centre | 25 Augusta Ave.
We were welcomed with open arms to help prepare lunch and dinner for visitors of the St. Felix Centre. The first shift covered the 9AM to 1PM lunch service, and from 3PM to 8PM the second team tackled dinner! It was heartwarming to see the gratitude of the staff as well as the individuals who came in from the cold for a warm meal!
We lent our support to Good Shepherd with sorting and boxing food for many individuals and families that use their services on a regular basis. Their staff typically serve 1200 meals a day on average! On top of hot meals, they also provide clean clothes and a safe, clean bed for those in need.
Sistering offers multiple services in an aim to help at-risk, socially isolated women in Toronto who are homeless or precariously housed. We joined the strong women who dedicate so much of their time to supporting Sistering.
Ve’ahavta (Hebrew for “and you shall love”) works to promote positive change in the lives of people of all faiths who are marginalized by poverty. They offer a hands-on approach to supporting their mission of tikun olam (repairing the world). Even just these translations demonstrate how beautiful it is to help and love others! We offered our support by collecting items for their street outreach team to help make daily essentials more accessible to Toronto communities.
It was honestly such an incredibly grounding and rewarding experience to give even just some of our time to help these organizations. It also served as an important reminder that there are so many people who desperately need our help on a daily basis. There is an estimated 235,000 people who are homeless in Canada annually, with 35,000 estimated to be homeless on any given night. Those are only two statistics that help shed light on the reality of homelessness in Canada. We’ve pulled a few m0re shown below that help provide an understanding of how this affects so many people. Realistically, these individuals could easily be our peers or friends, and we may just haven’t noticed the signs.
150,000: Approximate number of people who access emergency shelters in Canada annually.
50,000: Estimated number of people who are “hidden homeless” — defined as those without homes of their own who lean on friends or family for shelter — on any given night.
4 million: Number of bednights, defined as nights during which a shelter bed is occupied, each year across Canada.
$105.3 million: Amount the federal government spends annually on the Homeless Partnering Strategy, which is designed to prevent and reduce homelessness.
82,380: People who found more stable housing as a result of the Homeless Partnering Strategy.
We encourage everyone to learn more about these amazing organizations, and how you can lend your support. You can make a big difference even in a small way by just donating your time. Imagine what the world could look like with a little more kindness!
A huge thank you to everyone who came out to join the #NKPR26 team. Checkout our Instagram highlights (@natashankpr) to see more from our third annual 26 Hours of Kindness initiative!