I Have a Boyfriend and Life is Good

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We met the old fashioned way: in person, through a mutual friend who introduced us at a cocktail party that was taking place at our local art gallery.

Although he says he first remembers seeing me lurking by the coat check area, I only remember the moment we met.

One thing you need to understand, is that like many laid back locales on the West Coast, my hometown isn’t exactly known for it’s well dressed male population. In fact, between the masses of conservative buttoned up government workers and the slew of prototypical west coast dudes who live in hoodies (and who I suspect have never worn socks or owned a pair of full length pants) this city is often referred to as a place “where men’s fashion goes to die” (this phenomena was even covered on the local news!)

When he walked into my life wearing pink pants, a tailored suit jacket, with an earful of piercings, my initial thought was  “Where the hell did this guy come from?!”

I was instantly drawn to him and we bonded quickly over our mutual love of Jill Scott and Ballet (me – from having danced for 18 years, him – from having worked as a publicist for a famous ballet dancer.)

As I was sitting on a step, enjoying a cocktail with my friend he told me,

“Sitting there like that, you look very much like Heather Sweet. Has anyone ever told you that before?”

(I learned a few seconds later that Heather Sweet is the given name of Dita Von Teese. Colour me flattered.)

With his shaved head, dark eyes and sexy facial scruff, I thought he looked like a cross between Andre Agassi and Jason Statham. Think: Russian athlete meets action hero/character from James Bond. (as I’d later discover, we are both Eastern European mutts.)

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Cocktails at the art gallery lead to more cocktails at a lounge downtown.

I didn’t have any inkling that he liked me until we were ready to head home and my friend suggested we go to Burger King.

When we got to the restaurant, he asked me if I wanted anything.

I told him that I don’t really like Burger King; that I only like the Filet o’Fish from McDonalds.

“Do you want me to go get you one?” he asked.

So, while I stayed in our sticky Burger King booth with my friend, her boyfriend and a plate of poutine; he braved the throngs of drunks and teen meth heads at the sketchy McDonalds down the street. When he returned a few minutes later, proudly clutching my favourite fish sandwich, I knew that I indisputably liked him.

We now joke that,  “you had me at Filet o’ Fish.

Earlier that night we had exchanged business cards. When I woke up the next morning, the first thing I did was email him.

I sent him a short message thanking him for the Filet o’Fish and he sent me back the most romantic email I have ever received, which ended with him asking me out.

A week later, we went on our first date at my favourite wine bar. Throughout the date I noticed myself turning my chair so I could get closer to him at the bar. When I got up to use the washroom, he handed me this handwritten note.

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It was one of the best first dates I’ve ever been on & we’ve been together ever since.

It’s been almost three months now – three really great, amazing months. I’ve resisted writing this post because it’s hard to distill (and do justice) all of my favourite moments from the past 90 days – there are just too many.

There was the first morning I woke up at his house, looked over and asked him what he was doing on his phone and he replied, “I’m buying us tickets to go see Erykah Badu in June.”

There was the moment after I introduced him to my best friend and I told her, “he just intuitively knows how to be with me.”

There was also the time when he bought Joe the Intern and Hammer a set of top-hats (among other things.)

His burgeoning bromance with Joe the Intern makes me smile everyday, because it shows that he really gets me – blog, “interns” and all. In return, I like to make him Filet o’ Fish themed art work, which is not very good, but that he seems to love anyways.

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(Also, he helped dispose of the iRide, which if you read that post you know was no easy feat.)

For the purpose of this blog, I’m going to call him My Secret Agent – partly as an ode to a character from one of my favourite books, Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block; but also because he seemingly appeared out of nowhere and always makes me feel safe and protected in his presence.

It’s funny how you don’t realize what specifically is missing from your life until it arrives. In my case it was someone who is kind and thoughtful, and accepts me exactly as I am. The influx of romance and handwritten notes also doesn’t hurt.

I don’t know how to end this post because unlike previous dating posts there isn’t an ending. When it comes to the Secret Agent, it feels as though we’re just beginning our adventure together. So, just know that things are good, I’m happy and me & Joe the Intern give this guy an enthusiastic two thumbs up. It’s about time.

Review | Haute Hips Panty Subscription

haute hipsI‘ve always been under the impression that subscription boxes just aren’t my thing. My beauty routine is pretty minimalist, so the thought of getting a bunch of new products every month actually makes me feel overwhelmed, not excited. I’d rather just pick up what I need, when I need it. Even though there are some really awesome ones, this is how I feel about most subscription services. However, a lingerie subscription? Now that’s something I can get excited about! Despite having a lingerie drawer that’s bursting at the seams, I can never have enough pretty underthings.

Enter Haute Hips, a panty subscription service that provides you with two pairs of pretty, comfortable, chic panties for an affordable monthly fee. When Haute Hips asked me if I’d be interested in reviewing their service, I couldn’t resist.

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I should start off by mentioning how adorable the Haute Hips website is. I’ve looked at several lingerie subscription services and theirs is by far one of the most fun and approachable sites I’ve come across. I love the photography (um, lounging in bed with glasses on = love), the graphics & their adorably titled blog, The Panty Line.

Here’s how the service works: Choose a membership option (monthly, 6 months or 12 months) and Haute Hips will personally select two pairs of gorgeous, luxurious, comfy panties to be sent directly to your mailbox. One month + 6 month memberships cost $12 + $2 shipping and handling. A year long membership works out to be about $11 a month + shipping and handling. Considering other panty subscription services charge $20/month for just one pair of panties, Haute Hips is very affordable.

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Haute Hips also offers “Panty Perks.” Love your Haute Hips panties so much you want more? Each month there’s a new featured panty that you can add to your order for $6. See those gorgeous black and white panties below? They were May’s featured panty. Yep, I am smitten!

What to expect in your monthly order: cute, luxurious, pretty panties that are also comfortable. You won’t find any crazy contraptions like these crazy panties, however you will find lots of chic styles like the ones below.

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11164834_682405568549228_57195982760314277_nWhen you subscribe to Haute Hips you’ll also help give back. Haute Hips donates a portion of every sale to local women’s shelters in the US; providing intimates so all women can feel their very best. This summer they will be supporting Dignity U Wear, an organization that provides children and their families with brand new clothing (I just read through their website and they do some really great work; like providing clothing to underprivileged children, veterans and women in crisis.)

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Curious to see what goodies I received from Haute Hips? It’s time for the big reveal!

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On Dating, Intuition and Being Brave

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One of my favourite parts of my job is when readers email me with questions. I don’t always feel qualified to answer them (after all, I always joke that this blog is basically the blind leading the blind – except when it comes to sex toys. I actually know quite a bit about those.) However, the email below, which was sent to me by a reader that I also consider a friend, hit really close to home. It was one of those, “Yup. Girl, I have been there” moments. Because of this, I thought it would be a really good one to answer on the blog –

“Simone – I can’t bring myself to date yet! How do you bounce back from all the whack situations and disappointments? What is your mindset when you date? How do you know when to walk away? I feel like I’ve lost faith and trust in myself for misjudging the last two situations…I always try to make things work or give it more time “to see.”

 I also have this belief that my anxiety and any flaw in me has to be fixed before I can truly attract the love I want and be the partner that I envision. This is a really good mind trick to never date again! In short: gearing up to get back out there but terrified.” 

Ok, so a few things –

First of all, if you’re not ready to date – that’s totally OK. I feel like we live in a culture where everyone is constantly being encouraged to date, pair off and be together – something that just isn’t always realistic, fair or even healthy. We’re fed the message that if we’re not dating, in a relationship or trying to find one, that there’s something wrong with us – something that inevitably needs fixing. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Sometimes hearts just need time to heal. Being alone can help facilitate this. If not dating feels like the most authentic and right thing for you right now; follow your intuition. However long you need, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with taking a breather.

The truth is, although this blog covers a lot of my life, there are also a lot of things that you don’t see. It may seem like I’m always dating up a storm; immediately climbing back atop of the proverbial horse every time I get knocked down, however this isn’t always the case. Over the past three years I’ve taken several lengthly hiatuses from dating and sex. It just doesn’t always read this way because more often than not, I don’t always write about my experiences in real time.

With that said, this wasn’t always the case. While writing my book, which involved digging through the romantic wreckage of my past, I realized there were so many times that I flung myself, head-first into various relationships with very little regard for my own self-preservation. I practiced what I like to call “emotional cliff-diving.” I wanted to feel and experience things, and didn’t really think through consequences. I was brave to a fault. I had some good experiences but also lots of really, really bad ones.

Although a lot of good writing material came from these experiences, I wouldn’t recommend emotional cliff diving to anyone (well, at least anyone over the age of 23.) With that said, here’s what I’ve learned now that I’m older and a tiny bit wiser: dating is always going to make you feel somewhat vulnerable. The only way you can avoid vulnerability is by closing yourself off emotionally from other people – which doesn’t work if your goal is to meet someone. You have to be brave. Once I decided that I wanted to start dating again, I realized that the only way I was going to get through it was by becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable. 

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We’ve Got a New Look!

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You may have noticed that things look a bit different around here! After lots of tweaks, the new version of Skinny Dip went live on Friday and I couldn’t be happier with the results. I told my designer, Ashley, that I wanted something more editorial, yet still fun and playful – a look she totallyContinue reading

Review | Joe the Intern Tries Sexting with Arousr

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A few weeks ago, the creators of Arousr got in touch with me about test driving their new app and service. Arousr is a “sexting community” for adults over the age of 21. According to their website, “Arousr is a safe place where adults can connect with other consenting adults to chat, talk, exchange picturesContinue reading

Meet The iRide: The World’s Most Inconvenient Sex Toy

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A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of recording an audio workshop (podcast) with one of my favourite people on the internet, Nicole of a Life Less Bullshit. We spent an hour talking about career paths, being a writer and what it’s like to write about sex on the internet – and it wasContinue reading

Giveaway | Masters of Sex on CraveTV + We-Vibe

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There’s been lots exciting new things brewing behind the scenes at Skinny Dip headquarters lately. If you’ve been following my Instagram you may have noticed that we’ve acquired some new Interns and recently spent a week eating & shopping our way through Vancouver. We’re also in the midst of putting the finishing touches on aContinue reading