HP’s Puppy Picks

As most of you know, I recently had a new addition to my pack: a beautiful 5-month old Australian Shepherd mix puppy named Cordelia!

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I adopted her from Animal Haven NYC.  Cordelia and her sister were both born deaf, so were thrown out in Ohio — probably because the owner thought they couldn’t sell them for money (heartbreaking)

Even though she was a totally unplanned pup, I knew she belonged in my life.

(more pics here!)

However, it’s been a while since I’ve dealt with a puppy phase.  Being that it’s my second time at the rodeo, I’ve discovered a few tried & true items that I wanted to share.

I’m going to assume we all have the obvious “classics” down, such as the right crate, Easy Walk Harness, the Classic Kong, Nature’s Miracle, etc.  But wanted to share the “why didn’t anyone tell me?!” discoveries:

FOOD:

I’m a firm believer that you are what you eat, so I always want to feed my pups the very best.  To me, there is nothing better than the Champion Petfoods lines: Orijen and their lower protein sister brand, Acana.

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They never outsource their materials, and are dedicated to quality ingredients and formulas.  I’ve only experienced excellent results with this food, and it’s especially great for any pups who have grain allergies (Orijen, in particular).  For more info about the two brands (and their differences), click here.

I feed Syd Acana Lamb formula, since it has the lowest protein in their line, and she’s a small dog (12 lbs or so).   I have Cordelia on the Orijen Puppy Formula, since she’ll be a medium size dog, full-size.

Helpful hint: even though you may not be feeding her a large bulk quantity of food, both lines are very high-quality, so go by the KCal info on the bags and feed accordingly.

ADDENDUM:  I’ve also recently heard good things about Freshpet – but I’ve also seen commercials on TV, which stirs up the skeptic in me.

SHEDDING:

I’ve never had to deal with shedding before since Syd is a schnauzer, so dealing with pet hair was a whole new world.  Cordelia has lab-like hair: short bristles.

After much hype, I bought the Furminator, but it didn’t really do it for me.  It was heavy, and not easy for me to clean the hairs out of the brush itself.  Then I discovered the Shed ‘n Blade.

shed 'n blade

Looks barbaric, I know, but it works so incredibly well and really pulls out the undercoat,  SO easy & quick to use and you don’t have to spend time cleaning the tool itself.

Most importantly, it doesn’t seem to hurt the pup.

TOYS:

My dear friend Christine from Temptalia sent the most thoughtful presents over for Cordelia — one of which is her all-time favorite toy: The Hedgehog.

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Even better: it’s made by a company called Kyjen, which is US-based and dedicated to creating quality products for dogs, ranging from toys, outside gear, to accessories.

(I also personally love that the hedgehog is filled with recycled plastic bottles!)

They also have tug toys made from recycled firemen hose!

 

THE PUPPY PACIFIER

By far, this has been the most amazing discovery yet.  I lovingly call it the “pacifier” because it’s the only thing that will keep Cordelia entertained for an extended period of time: an ELK ANTLER.

Extra Large Elk Split Chew

What’s the difference between an elk antler and a rawhide or a Flossy?  A world of difference!

To begin with, here are a list of health benefits, found on my favorite brand’s site, RC Antlers.  But my main reasons to love:

  • it’s odorless – no smelly (or stained) snout
  • it won’t affect your pup’s protein intake (aka stool).  Flossies and rawhides will definitely lead to softening
  • it lasts forever!

21Helpful Hint: for a “starter”, get an antler that is already split — they pups really go for the marrow, so it will make it easier for them to access.

I know I’ve left off a bunch of other things, but these were the main discoveries I had to share!

Good luck with your furbaby! :)

Rooting for the little guys — Why I’ll always Shop Small.

My parents have had the good fortune of being small business owners in the town of Rye, NY since 1982 — just over 31 years.  They immigrated to this country from Korea and have worked tirelessly to do the best they could in every way: the best standard of food quality, the best service to their customers & community, and the taking the best care of their employees.

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As a result, their little gourmet specialty shop, June & Ho has become a landmark of Rye, and has been repeatedly been recognized in publications such as The New York Times and Westchester Magazine for its excellence.  My parents live their lives under the belief that sincerity and hard work will ultimately pay off in the end.

Just this week, a shiny new Whole Foods store opened in the next town, barely a mile away.  Needless to say a development like this can be devastating to a small business like my parents’.  It got me thinking about the importance of shopping small.

My mother, aka “Momma Park” always goes out of her way to purchase something from a fellow small business owner, be it a pharmacy, a cosmetic shop, for shoes, or even a book.  Items she could easily purchase cheaper, or more conveniently, elsewhere.  When asked why she goes to the extra trouble, she always says, “I like to support the local people.”

I’m always so lucky because I learn so much from Momma Park — this week is no exception. Sometimes it’s not always about convenience which – when you think about it –  has everything to do with yourself.  It’s convenient for you, saving time, money, what-have-you.  But sometimes, it should be about sincerity.  About support.  About community.  About appreciation that your town isn’t one strip mall of franchises.

This week has made me aspire to be like Momma Park and shop small, “to support the local people.”

I am confident that my parents will be able to survive this Whole Foods episode — just as they’ve survived the Cosi, the Starbucks, the Le Pain Quotidien franchise episodes before it.

While Whole Foods may have aisle-after-aisle of foods you never new existed, June & Ho has a secret weapon they’ll never have….we have Momma Park!  :)

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June & Ho, 70 Purchase Street; Rye, NY 10580.  914.967.1900

Ode to NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base

Confession: I’m not one who likes to constantly touch-up my eye makeup throughout the day.  Lipstick, blush — sure.  But I don’t necessarily want to carry my entire eye kit around with me.

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Fortunately, there’s the NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base.  In my opinion, it’s one of the best products from the NARS line.  I’d even say it’s the single-best eyeshadow base on the market (in my opinion).

Reasons why:

  • Packaging: It comes in the signature NARS soft-touch packaging, so it’s easy to grip.
  • Applicator: It has a doe-foot applicator, so it’s easy to dab on just the right amount to the lid
    • Personal application tip: Once I dab on a small amount, I use my ring finger to spread evenly on the lid & lashline
  • Translucent:  Although it appears white in the tube, the formula glides on completely colorless.
  • Finish: Once the formula dries down, the skin on the lid feels matte & tacky — primed and it literally grabs on to whatever eye color product you place on top.

Results:  Whenever I prime my eye look with the NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base, not only does my liner and eyeshadow stay on and doesn’t budge (or smudge)…it stays put through whatever my day brings….which includes a 4-6 mile bike ride to & from work.

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 after my sweaty bike ride home…eye makeup – no problem!

At $24.00 a tube, this product has lasted me for months, even with daily wear.  Well-worth the investment for a fuss-free makeup day!

Available a narscosmetics.com.

bicycle diaries: in search of commuter-friendly pants

earlier this year, i made a significant addition to my life — a bicycle!  i grew up biking around my neighborhood, but didn’t expect i would fall in love with cycling around the city so much.

Spot Dualie 2013

i started commuting on my bike to work — approximately a 4 mile ride, which includes a segment over the Queensboro Bridge.  but I quickly learned that short of looking like i’m heading to Workout World, that fashionable biking clothes were practically non-existent — at least for women.

men, however, have a bevy of options, especially with Levi’s coming out with their Commuter series, and specialty boutiques like Outlier.  but as women, it seemed we were resigned to have to change clothes upon arrival.

i refused to believe there wasn’t a reasonable solution to finding pants that I could wear on my bike, then keep on at work.  but i tried leggings, jeans, khakis — none of them kept their form once I got off the bike.  they were all stretched out beyond recognition.

then I had an idea: what about HORSEBACK RIDING BREECHES!

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TuffRider Low-Rise Breeches

no, they’re not the epitome of fashion, but essentially, they are designed to be aesthetically pleasing, as well as functional.  here are the reasons why I love them for commuting via bike:

  • FABRIC: breathable and designed to stretch and retain shape
  • FLATTERING: these babies feel like fortified leggings – slimming and shaping!
  • VARIETY:  apparently the horseback riding industry has come leaps & bounds since I used to ride as a child — breeches now come in all textures, colors and cuts
  • AFFORDABLE:  breeches come in a range of prices, but you can definitely find affordable ones for your needs
  • they’re fashionable enough that you don’t necessarily have to change!

breeches can get quite expensive, but I just bought these basic Tuff Rider Low Rise Riding Breeches ($42.99) and have loved them so far. they’ve also held up really well in the wash!

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if anyone has any other suggestions for bike-friendly, wallet-friendly options, would love to know about them!  :)

NAIL ART: stick a feather in it!

apologies — i fell behind on my nail posts (been traveling for work). this is a design i had from a few weeks ago.

DETAILS
  • LOCATION: STUDIO L, 247 W 38th Street, Ste 1603; (646) 499-5357
  • Nail Stylist: Manami (naturally)

when i first saw what could be done with feathers at Studio L, i just knew i had to try it on a design soon!

 ←hotness, no?

NAIL LOGISTICS:

  • Manami recommended laying a color down as a base, so the feathers would show more prominently, i decided to change up the base colors a bit to mix it between a peach / light grey / dark grey
  • lay down a clear layer of Calgel, then while sticky, position the full feather tip across the nail
  • once in place, cure under the UV, place another layer of clear Calgel over, cure again, then cut off excess. ultimately you can file off the extra excess until it’s perfect!
  • afterwards, Manami added a few accents of glitter to the feathered fingers to bring it out!

i think this is one of my all-time favorite designs i’ve done. the feathers looked so sophisticated, but it still had personality!

FINISHED PRODUCT:

a different kind of challenge: 60-Days of RAW

so, on Tuesday, i had the ultimate NYC girl accident: while walking to the office after a press event, my high heel caught in a pothole and i totally bit it in the street.  unfortunately for me, i have an extra bone in my foot, to which i severely damaged the connective ligaments. OUTCOME: HP in crutches for the next 2 months.

another bummer: no yoga for 2 months. :(

so, rather than eating my feelings through this, i’ve decided to try and stay healthy and embark on a 60-day raw challenge: back to being 90-100% raw for 60 full days. considering i’ve fallen off the raw wagon because it was tiring being a social leper, i’m taking this gimpy opportunity to challenge myself and get back on track!

i’m only on Day 3, but already, i’m noticing a significant lift in my energy levels, my productivity and ability to focus.  it’s truly remarkable just how much of what you eat affects your body.

wish me luck — you’ll likely see more raw posts in the weeks to come!

Return to Nail Art: reviving the White Matte Marbled nail design

it’s been nearly 2 years since i last got a crazy nail design.  unheard of, considering i’d gotten a new design every two weeks for a full year straight. but my recent trip to Japan has re-ignited my need for the nail art.

i noticed all the super-polished women rocked beautiful calgel designs, even if it was just a simple gradation! even at the mass drug stores, they had a full section dedicated to nail art:

i chose Studio L for my triumphant return to nail art — mostly because i know & trust the skills of Manami, the owner.  i know she can always execute any crazy idea i have — very rare when you’re trying to be creative with your nail art!

despite flipping through all the Nail Venus & Nail Max magazines in the salon, i had my heart set on a white-ish design in anticipation of Spring, so i revived an older design i had done a couple years ago: my marbled white design.

NAIL ART DETAILS:

  • calgel base
  • PEARL calgel color in a reverse french shape
  • took White Matte calgel color to create marbled effect

  • add rhinestones, gold micro-beads & turquoise as needed around accent nails. :)
final effect:

STUDIO L

247 West 38th Street (between 7th & 8th Ave), 16th Floor

(646) 499-5357, nailstudionyc.com