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paws for a cause

My worst-kept secret? I'm a crazy cat lady. I have two furballs from the Ottawa Humane Society and they figure prominently in my snaps and Instagram feed. For example:

My other worst-kept secret: I'm a fool for bath, body, and beauty goodies. Particularly those made from ethically-sourced ingredients and without animal testing. Since the late 80s, I've been loading up on said goodies at The Body Shop, and my entire teen-aged life was a cloud of satsuma, dewberry, and vanilla.

I have a soft spot for this ground-breaking company because they remain committed to animal welfare

and ethically-sourced ingredients despite decades of growth worldwide. And in recent years, individual shops have been given the thumbs up to partner with local community organizations, which is truly awesome.

So last month I teamed up with The Body Shop Rideau Centre to plan a private shopping night just for you lovely readers. For two hours on a snowy December night, the store was closed to the public and open only to you amazing 613ers.

The Body Shop generously provided you folks with 50% off the store and 30% off gifts, and with each of your purchases they donated to protection campaigns for

threatened species and habitats.

On a more local note, we also brought in the amazing team from Ottawa Stray Cat Rescue, who were at the shop selling delicious treats for both kitties and people, as well as kitty-inpsired Christmas cards and all sorts of kitty stocking stuffers. They even had heated napping blankets and felted doughnuts stuffed with catnip!

All proceeds went directly to help local kitties in need, so by spoiling your own kitty you helped other furballs too.

As an aside: many of The Body Shop's Rideau Centre staff are foster parents with Ottawa Stray Cat Rescue, providing care and shelter for kitties who haven't yet been adopted. This local team really does go above and beyond to give back to the community; it's amazing to watch.

I have to say a huge HUGE thanks to you lovely readers who came out in droves to shop for a cause and support the Ottawa Stray Cat Rescue. It was an absolute treat getting to meet many of you for the very first time, and I loved seeing some familiar faces too.

wanna do it again?

I had a blast working with The Body Shop's wonderful team and seeing all of you fine folks, and I'd love to do it again. Did you enjoy the party? Have you been hoping for another? Comment below and tell me!

A few thoughts to get you started. Did you:

- enjoy the exclusive deals just for Amy in 613 readers?

- stock up on Christmas gifts and now hope to treat yourself?

- enjoy the chance to support global and local causes?

- miss the event so you're crossing your fingers for another?

- want to meet the kitties in-store like we did at a previous event?

- want more of a heads-up so you can put it in your planner?

Did you score any old favourites or discover a new must-have that night? Share below in the comments section! Yours truly is a bit of a shopper, so naturally I stocked up. And until it's time to do it all over again, think I'll hop in the bath. xo

special thanks

I want to say an extra special thank you to Jamie of Hello Lovely Studio, who joined us to photograph the night. With the exception of the very first pic of my kitty Sigmund eyeing the tub, all photos in this post are her handiwork. She's incredibly talented and such a dream to work with!

Lucky for you, Hello Lovely Studio is kicking off the new year with a givewaway, so head to their Facebook page and enter to win a photo shoot. Say cheese!

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