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The Hip Life



5 for 25

Courtenay Henderson

Well, here we are.


It's clearly time we all start our no-sugar, no-gluten cleanses, start taking our sups and head to the gym to work on our bench press and while we're at it, drop those "last 10 pounds." Am I right? 

All joking aside, the new year is the perfect time to implement some new goals or lifestyle changes. It is a new beginning and a clean slate. Leave those failures in the past and move onwards and upwards!

This little workout regime will not take hours out of your day but it will help kickstart a routine. 5-10 minutes is all you really need and my hope is after you complete these 25 days it will create a healthy habit. Push yourself and get some exercise into your day!

5 exercises for 25 days:

  1. Wall sit (1 min)
  2. Tricep dips (25 reps)
  3. Squats or jump squats (25 reps)
  4. Push ups (25 reps)
  5. Burpees (25 reps)

No equipment necessary! Stay at home and work it out. Take breaks if and when you need to, add an extra set if you're feeling spicy, take out or add in cardio (ex. squats- no cardio, jump squats- cardio, 30 sec plank-no cardio or burpees-cardio)

Who's with me?



Courtenay Henderson

I always have this wonderful idea in my head of Norrie and I at some super swanky NYE party, all dressed up, eating bite sized hors d'oeurves and sipping fancy cocktails. Someone is there at the door to take our coats, and hand us a welcome drink. Then we mingle with people and tell jokes, the kind of jokes that make you tilt your head back and laugh in amusement. And then there would be dancing- so much dancing!! Just like one of those parties that Holly Golightly would have thrown in Breakfast at Tiffany's. What a life!


Our reality: Staying up late is hard.

But I will look awesome until I fall asleep at 10:29 tonight.

I have been loving the jumpsuit. They are so easy to dress up or down and it's already a complete outfit. I got this little jumpsuit from H&M kids, yes kids, for under $20. It's full of New Years glitz and glam and it feels like I'm wearing pyjamas. #winning



I also decided to keep the hair simple this year. I just curled it with a curling wand, and threw it up into a ponytail. I think it looks sleek and it's definitely not too fussy. Add a little hair spray and you're good to go! 


We will be celebrating by cooking a huge meal with friends, playing games and hanging out. It's become one of our favourite traditions and we don't have to wait forever for food or book months in advance to get a spot at their table ;)

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Welcome, 2016!  



photos by Leah Jones @_featherandink


that's a wrap #christmasstyle

Courtenay Henderson

I love Christmas. I usually like to put my Christmas decor up in early November. I love how a Christmas tree and garland instantly make any space feel warm and cozy. There is nothing like enjoying a moment with Christmas treats, a coffee and all those twinkling lights. Ahh... Glory.

This year I decided that my gifts would be part of the decor. I've pretty much been shopping for gifts since the summer time so I had them all ready to go as soon as my house was ready. In true Courtenay fashion, my decorations are all neutral. Shocker! I definitely add a lot of sparkly things, but in my opinion glitter and metallics fall in the neutral category. Clearly all that fun, bright and busy wrapping paper wasn't going to fit into my theme so I thought of something else to wrap with.

Brown paper. Neutrals, for the win!

I bought two rolls of brown paper for all my wrapping and then used twine, kitchen string and glitter ribbon to spice it up. The brown paper was so inexpensive, I paid $8 for both and have almost a whole roll left. The only downside to the paper is that it's very thick. Wrapping things in a box was ok, but trying to wrap items without a box was a struggle. I feel like that's why the song says, "brown paper packages, tied up with string". You need that string, tape doesn't cut it. 


Initially I was thinking I would draw a different shape on everybody's gifts, like little polka dots, arrows, hearts etc. But let's be honest- it was too much work.

Enter my friend, Erica. She does a Christmas tags class every year where she helps you to create beautiful tags for your gifts. I love the tags, but I hate the work.  Her tags are works of art, and she loves teaching and creating new ideas and designs for people. I like to go for the conversation, cookies and friends #priorities. This year I decided I would go but not participate in the actual class. But I did, and I'm so glad because my tags really added to my gift wrap. They only took me about 25-20 min total to make which left lots of time for sipping hot cocoa and cracking jokes. 

I'm super happy with how it all turned out and I would definitely do this again next year.

Erica posted step by step instructions on how we made the tags. Check it out on her blog: For the (heart) of Stamping 

Hope you all have a Merry Christmas and some serious quality time with the ones you love.



Distressed Denim

Courtenay Henderson

Grab a friend and a pair of scissors!

This was a really great project and it helped salvage a pair of jeans I was ready to throw out. It was a win-win!

You'll need:

  • sharp scissors or an exacto knife
  • card board
  • chalk
  • jeans
  • some aggression

I put my jeans on and then marked where I thought I would want them to be distressed or ripped with a piece of chalk. You know the old "measure twice, cut once"? It definitely applies here. When I was happy with where the rips would be, I put a piece of cardboard on the inside of the jeans and laid them out on my work space.


Here are my instructions/tips:

  • pull the scissors across the chalk lines, like you're scraping the fabric
  • pull the fabric pretty tight so that you can be accurate in your cuts
  • leave about a centimetre of space between cuts, otherwise you'll just end up with holes
  • try them on a few times just to make sure the tears are where you want them to be
  • grab a friend- it really helps to have an extra set of eyes for the final result
  • a mix of the scrapes and cuts looked best (in my humble opinion)

Ultimately, this is your art project/fashion statement so if you make a mistake no one needs to know! I may continue to make changes to my jeans. I love them except the holes on the left knee are a bit much for me. I feel like they're a little too hard rock. I may just commit and make it an actual hole. We'll see- these jeans are still a work in progress.

This project was a lot easier than I thought it would be. Normally these projects seem like a good idea in theory and then just flop in the execution. I got a little scissor happy and distressed my 6 month old daughter's jeans. They are too cute! But, I will warn you that those little toes like to pop through the holes when you're trying to pull them on. Still worth it though. I mean I'm pretty sure babies crawl so hard they naturally wear out their jeans, right? 

If you decide to distress your jeans, #thehiplifeblog and show me your creations. I would love to see them!  

Happy cutting!


Hello, under there!

Courtenay Henderson

In my quest to lead a chemical free life I've overlooked the underarm. I didn't want to know what was in the stuff I use to smell so fresh and so clean. I knew that once I did I would need to do something about it and here we are. 

I've been testing this recipe out for about a month. The only negative is that you need to reapply after working out or before bed or after you've done something that makes you super nervous (ha). On the real, you do need to reapply once, maybe twice a day. Not the worst. Kind of makes you think about what's in the other stuff. Why does it last so long?? I could literally go days and not have to worry about it- yikes!

Sketchy ingredients in most deodorants/antiperspirants include:

  • aluminum- clogs pores, linked to cancer, can cause hormonal issues in women
  • parabens- a preservative which can lead to organ toxicity, hormonal imbalances and cancer

Thanks, but no thanks!

You're probably wondering if there will be an awkward transition of "oh gosh, hope the people down the street can't smell me coming" and days of casually smelling your pits just to make sure you're still fresh. Sorry not sorry to the people I made smell my armpits. Lucky for them there was no transition. You'll just smell like sunshine, rainbows and coconut oil.

Here is the recipe:

  • 1/2 c coconut oil

  • 1/4 c baking soda (aluminum free)

  • 1/4 c corn starch

  • 5-10 drops of essential oil (lavender, lemon, tea tree, eucalyptus or a combo)

Melt the coconut oil a little bit to make it soft. Mix in all the other ingredients and transfer it into a jar or container. It will make just under a cup.

In just under a month I have used less than 1/4 of my deodorant. It'll last a long time! Just store it some place cool otherwise the coconut oil will get soft.

Fun Facts about this deodorant:
  1. Coconut oil is antiseptic and antifungal (is there anything he can't do?!)
  2. Lavender essential oil is calming and can be used to cleanse cuts and skin irritations (perfect for all that dry shaving I do)
  3. Tea tree is antifungal, antibacterial and has antiviral (what a champ)

Let me know how you like it. I've had a few friends try it out recently and they've loved it!

- C