Category Archives: Everyday Stories

A little motivation to move

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You might say that in the last couple months I’ve really slacked on eating well and exercising. I think there’s a million reasons excuses that I could give as to why this happens. I mean, in the winter time it’s easy to just get comfortable in a routine of NOT moving around because the weather is no fun and, let’s face it, I hate winter and being part of it.

Actually, as a side note, one of my goals this year was to find a way to appreciate winter. I really tried, you guys, but realized once the snow had melted how truly relieved I was to see it all go. I came to the conclusion that the only part of winter I’ll ever appreciate is the excess amount of teas and coffees I drink, Christmas, and reading with a warm blanket.

Summer is so much prettier anyway 🙂

Back to my point, though. I get into this routine of doing-nothingness and it’s the easiest thing ever to just stay there. The worst part? I was doing a KICK ass job of eating awesome back in January. I’d actually never felt better than when I’d cut 95% of the meat out of my diet and replaced it with other various proteins. I had really taken myself out of my comfort zone & accomplished a goal I’d never even though I could do. I was proud of myself and I had SO MUCH FUN with it.

Now that I look back, I was eating all that amazing food right before I left to spend a week in Florida. And the time before that, I spent a ridiculous amount of time exercising and eating well right before my trip to Greece. I have a pattern that I’m beginning to notice as I started subconsciously eating really well these last couple days & significantly cutting the CRAP out of my every day diet.

I like to eat well when I have a goal to work towards. AKA vacation. AKA I want to feel good when I’m on a beach. The thing is, I book vacations so regularly now, a healthy lifestyle should be so much easier for me to keep up because I know I’ll always have somewhere to look forward to being. But I don’t WANT to just keep up a healthy lifestyle for as long as I travel- I want this to be a long term kind of thing. So why is it SO HARD for me to stay motivated to always eat properly and exercise regularly? Shouldn’t WANTING to FEEL GREAT be enough motivation? Why do the caramel frappucinos always beat out my willpower?

Must eat well now so I can eat pasta every day in Italy! 

I work in a really big store where there is a built-in Starbucks. This has been my ultimate downfall, although I’ve been really good at regularly ordering the ‘skinny’ version of anything I want. They all know to cut all the sugar out of my drinks, and yet I still feel extremely guilty at how often I get a coffee. Like, every day. Sometimes more than once a day.

I want to make a permanent lifestyle change without slipping back to old habits. I’m not sure how to make this a permanent thing yet, but with 2 and a half months before I’m back on the beautiful beaches of Europe, I’m willing to give this good eating & exercising thing yet another shot.

I’m going to start by cutting out a BIG part of the bad stuff I eat and replacing it once again with fruits and veggies. I want to cut down on the meat I eat again. I’d been doing really well at consciously eating LESS of it, but with school & finals that all went away too. I’m going to make healthy choices when I eat out, and try with ALL MY WILLPOWER to pretend there isn’t a Starbucks 10 feet away from where I spent 7 hours of my day.

I really want to give Jillian Michaels another try but so far she’s been my biggest downfall because I can never finish her freaking work outs. She’s too hard on me, guys. I think I may try some easier work outs at first and then kick butt in Jillian Michaels and see what happens from there.

I can do this. 

I’m even going to make myself a nice little deal. If, by July 1st, I’ve held up my personal goal of eating well, avoiding foods that are clearly not good for me & making a conscious effort to exercise regularly, I will buy myself a lovely new bathing suit for Europe & some other treat that I haven’t decided yet. I really want another bathing suit though & the ones I like aren’t CHEAP. If I’m going to spend the money, I better feel damn good wearing it. So I mean, I have to make this work!

What do you do to stay motivated in your healthy eating & exercising lifestyle? 

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7 months

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Dear Cris,

Sorry it’s been a while since I wrote your last letter. I kind of wish I’d written a little more often but it seems like time is going SO FAST these days and look at you now, you’re already more than HALF A YEAR OLD. I seriously can’t believe it. You’re growing so fast & you’re learning so quickly, it amazes me each time I have the chance to see your cute little face.

We spent some time together last weekend. It was Mother’s Day and you were in an amazingly good mood. That’s no surprise though, you’re almost ALWAYS in a good mood. Let the record state that you might be one of the calmest, easiest babies to please. Ever. You’re kind of like your dad that way, because apparently he had a pretty easy disposition as a baby as well.

At one point you were sitting in your car seat while we were all standing around outside waiting for your dad, and you were extremely giggly. I looked at you from the rear window and you BURST into laughter. We started playing a really serious game of hide and seek and you were laughing so hard it made me start laughing, too. I seriously love how much you love playing games, and it just makes my day when I can make you giggle.

Giggles in your little suit on Mother’s Day! 

The last 5 months since I wrote to you have just been crazy. You’ve done a lot of growing, getting bigger, and becoming the little boy that I have imagined you to be for SO long now. Your face is a real tiny person’s now, not just a newborn baby’s. Your smiles are more than just you learning how mimic other peoples’ faces. Your face genuinely lights up with delight when you recognize someone, and you are learning the difference between friend and stranger. Random people love saying hello to you and giving you little pats on the back because you’re so cute and round and you’ve got the biggest, bluest, most curious looking eyes. And when they try and get your attention? You smile and cover your face up. YOU’RE A SHY BABY. Who would have known?!

Drooling on Mother’s Day. It’s your thing, now that you’re getting teeth. Woo! Ha 🙂

On your half birthday you finally started eating food. It’s a bit of a challenge because your mama and daddy are teaching you what it means to put actual food in your mouth instead of just milk. I personally think it’s hilarious to watch and I love snapping pictures of you with food all over your face. We’re going to have so much fun looking back at all this when you’re older. Just wait until you bring a girl home. Hehe 🙂

Food. Everywhere. You’re still cute! ❤

Seriously though, you’re just all kinds of cute. I’ve wanted to be an aunt ever since I can remember (more than wanting to be a mom. I am NOT ready for that yet!) and you have been the perfect baby to learn the ropes with. In your first letter I told you that I needed some time to get used to you and how to hold you comfortably; now I know that I’ve got the hang of things. I was so NERVOUS when you first got here that I wouldn’t be able to do things right when I saw you & that scared me. I’ve had so much fun figuring out what you love and don’t love, and I can easily say that you get excited and antsy when I come to pick you up now. It’s such a heart-warming feeling. I un-buckle your seat belt and you start moving your legs and giggling and you hoist yourself upwards to make things easier.

Clearly, I need to write to you more often. This is becoming a long letter. I can’t WAIT to see what the next few months have in store for you. I’d like to just say that my new favorite thing is taking walks with you and showing off how freaking cute of a nephew I’ve got.

Kid, you’re gonna be a heart breaker.

Love always,

Auntie Melissa

Oh, hey there.

Chit-chatting with squeaky Elmo. It’s like your videos come to life!

Mirror picture!

Have I mentioned you’re cute yet? ❤

An Adventurous Weekend

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Today I am guest posting over on Stephany’s blog Stephany Writes about vacation must-reads. I’d love for you to check it out and let me know what books you would recommend to someone leaving on a trip? Steph is currently on a cruise. You should all be jealous.

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So I ended up taking a relatively spontaneous long weekend off from blogging. Often by the time Friday rolls around, I’m already beginning to draft up posts for next week. But as of right now, I have NOTHING. I think every once in a while it’s nice to just take some time to LIVE and everything else will catch up eventually.

I had one of the best weekends that I’ve had in a long time. I had a spontaneous 4 days off from work, and although I already had a little road trip to Vermont planned with two work friends, I ended up packing my entire weekend with plans. Since today I’ll be heading back to work (in just a few hours, sigh!) I thought I’d share some photos from the last few days before truly getting back to reality.

Thursday– I don’t have any photos, but I had a really lovely day anyway! I spent the afternoon at a L’Oreal sale with one of my best friends where I spent FAR TOO MUCH MONEY on makeup and hair products, followed by a really nice dinner and an Italian restaurant with some friends. Another one of my good friends is leaving for Florida tomorrow so we all wanted to get together for a little goodbye dinner kind of thing.

Friday– I got ready and met my two work friends (well, ex-work friends. I mean we’re still friends, we just don’t work together anymore!) and we drove over the border to Burlington for the night. We bought tickets to see FEIST in concert months & months ago, and had planned to stay overnight to do some shopping the next morning before heading home.

Sitting & waiting for Feist to start! Not our best picture, but the only one we got together

The lovely & extremely talented Feist! She put on a great show. Can’t wait to see her again in August!

The service at our hotel was amazing, but the place itself was SO sketchy. These tips were nailed crookedly to the back of our door…

Walking the gorgeous streets of Burlington on Saturday morning. We walked through a Farmer’s Market before heading into the mall for some serious shopping!

Although Vermont is only a couple hours from home, it still feels like an entirely different world. I always love going to the States for little trips because I get to eat and shop at places that don’t exist just a couple hours North here in Montreal. Although I do go a little crazy turning my cell phone off most of the time, I actually enjoyed it SOSO much this weekend. I happily turned it on to Airplane Mode as soon as crossed the border, and just spent the entire day enjoying a lovely city without worrying about who was trying to get in contact with me. It was VERY nice. ‘

We had a quick lunch at Panera (my first time there!) before heading the 2 and a half hours back home. I was VERY excited about trying this place out because I’ve heard so many good things about it, and it did NOT disappoint! My food was the bomb.

On Saturday night, we had a big girls’ night with a bunch of the ladies from work. I wasn’t able to stay for very long because I had to be up early on Sunday, but I was there long enough to take some yummy jello shots, HOLD A SNAKE (my friend’s pet!) and spend some time in the hot tub.

A few of us girls around the kitchen table!

Me being terrified while trying to hold Timmy the snake! I actually can’t believe I was convinced into doing this, ha 🙂

Sunday– Mother’s Day was another non-stop day for me. I woke up bright and early for a brunch with my family, followed by a baptism & finally the most delicious meal EVER as an after party for the baptism. I was out basically from 10am until 7pm and by the time I got home I was completely exhausted.

I had SUCH a lovely day and spent tons of time with my nephew who I hadn’t seen in almost two weeks. It felt like way longer- every time I see him he changes and does fun new things. Plus I think he gets cuter every time too. Seriously.

Me and my super giggly nephew at brunch. I freaking love this little munchkin! ❤

My brother and I with my nephew at brunch 🙂

Happy Mother’s day! I’m extremely lucky to be able to call this woman my mom 🙂 ❤

Hanging out with daddy during the baptism. His eyes just melt my heart!

It was my sister-in-law’s first Mother’s Day! Baby loves his mama 🙂

Goodness, it takes a long time to write about 4 days of awesome. I love weekends like this, and I hope there are many more to write about this summer. So far, May has been such a good month to me.  I’ve been working so hard at making the best out of all the little moments I have- with family, friends, and just the time I spend on my own. This weekend was, if anything, the exact kind of thing that reminds me why I’m so lucky to be surrounded with the family and friends that I have in my life. 

Did you do anything special this weekend? 

Endings, beginnings, and 4 months of freedom!

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Well, I did it. I survived my second year of University! 

Granted, I was only a part-time student, but that just meant juggling more work hours with studying hours. I can’t say it’s the most fun I’ve ever had, and as excited as I was to try some new classes they didn’t turn out to be as fun as I had hoped. Nonetheless, if all goes well, in 4 months from now I’ll be starting my official Bachelor’s degree in a business program! 

It hasn’t been easy. Anyone who has followed this blog in the last 2 years has heard me moan and groan often enough about the number of pre-requisite courses I’ve had to take to get into my choice program. Honestly, it’s my own fault. I’m the one who thought to myself throughout high school “who needs math?”… I do, past self. I do. Sigh. 

In any case, I had my very last math exam last night. Truth be told it did not go nearly as well as I had hoped. I wanted to walk in there, ace it, walk out, and be on vacation for 4 months. But in my true worrying nature, I’m quite the nervous wreck about it. If I don’t get the grade I need, I either have to re-take the class for a third time (I’ve never failed it, but to get into business I need a high grade in math and I don’t DO high grades in math. It doesn’t come naturally to me!) or I decide on another path. And I mean, okay, that would suck. But luckily there are a million things I could see myself doing with my future. I just REALLY want this.

Now that I’ve slept on my worry, though, I can honestly say that I am ridiculously proud of myself. When I was 18 I was drifting aimlessly and irresponsibly through life, spending money like it was my job and not thinking about my future. 4 years later I am not only about to begin a degree in a prestigious business school (I like to say it’s prestigious, anyway) but… I KNOW MATH. I barely scraped by in high school, and now I’m able to get DECENT GRADES. Regardless of the two years it took me to get here, I needed to be here.

And now? 

I have 4 whole months off. It was the ending of my least favorite chapter of University. Drifting around, walking in circles, having no particular program or group to associate to. Now I can breathe easy knowing it should all be done, and I get to start fresh in September. I mean, hopefully. I don’t know what I’ll do if I don’t get the grade I need.

I’m excited for this summer. I have fond memories of last year, what with going to Europe for the first time and falling in love with a new culture. Summer is my favorite time of the year- not only because it’s my birthday and the most beautiful weather, but because all the best concerts come into town & it opens up so many possibilities for traveling. And you just KNOW I’ll be traveling this summer, right? But more on that some other time.

So here’s to ending a tough two years in my life. But hard work pays off, and I”m going to enjoy my last summer of absolute freedom. I’ll be starting something so big and so new to me next school year and I am SO excited.

I can’t wait to see what summer brings, I just pray that whoever’s in charge gives me the grades I need to move ahead next year. Seriously, it’s time to get this Bachelor’s degree!

What is something you worked really hard for & were proud of  your results?

Up & Down

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My life feels like a big roller coaster. Which is a weird metaphor for me to use, considering I have so much trouble getting on an ACTUAL one. (seriously, ask my friends!I am either refusing entirely to try one or screaming my brains out on the baby ones). But it’s true; I have such ups and downs, highs and lows, sometimes I wonder when life is just going to become a smoother ride, slow down, and come to a stop somewhere safe.

I’m always looking up (or down) at the next turn, loop or dip ahead. In March, when I was having the toughest few weeks of my year, I was aching for the last day of the month to start over again in April. It seems like I’m always basing my life on what’s next- where I’ll be, what I’ll be doing, and what fun adventures are waiting for me. I’m always searching for a greater reason to being here, but when will I slow down and just be happy for a little while? I want to do that today.

April has been good to me. In between interviewing some of my favorite overseas bands, to seeing my beautiful nephew hit his first half birthday, to getting a job at my school that opens up a window of exciting opportunities for the year ahead, I have VERY little to complain about.

At this time exactly one month ago, I was praying for a light at the end of the tunnel. I was writing about my anxiety with failure and the way all bad things seem to pile on at once, and how nothing seems to be working out. Today, I just wanted to remind myself that it’s not always going to be as bad as it seems in any given moment.

When you’re having a really bad day, week, month, or year, remember there will always be a silver lining to the cloud above your head. Where there is failure, success is sure to not be far behind (for those who strive for it), and where there are emotionally difficult times, the heart learns to heal and find other things to be filled with.

Today I feel good. I’m on a good path. I am reminded that when things didn’t work out and I was afraid for my future, it was all for a reason. Because really, everything DOES happen for a reason. There are still many parts of my life that I question this about, and every time I feel like I am wrong, the world finds a way to show me that I am a stronger person for those moments.

I’m not saying everything is perfect, awesome, rainbows and unicorns. There are always a million tiny things on my mind; bits and pieces of my life that seem like they SHOULD be better, but just aren’t.  Right now though, I’m feeling like things are going to turn out okay. Even though I’m still stressing about my very last final exam (tomorrow!) I’m still seeing the good things, and I’m proud of everything I’ve managed to do in the last couple months to get to where I am. I took chances on myself, and although it doesn’t ALWAYS pay off, sometimes, it does.

What are you proud of yourself for today? When was the last time you took a step out of your comfort zone, and took a chance on yourself?

Wednesday Things

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Just a little motivation to get me through exams 🙂

Today is the beginning of my final exams, so I’m going to try really hard to avoid the internet in an attempt to be a good student. My goal for the month of April was to procrastinate less and do more daily studying and although I somewhat succeeded, I think mostly I haven’t. Luckily I’ve still got another exam to turn this around for, and that all starts today.

Before I head off and study/cram for my exam this evening, I thought I’d share a few random things about life:

1- I’ve finally updated some of the pages on my blogAbout Me, Blog Roll, and the addition of my Sponsor Info page. I’m most excited about that one as I’m hoping to add more of your lovely blog buttons to my sidebar as sponsors, as well as (hopefully) work with more companies for my writing. I’ve had a ton of fun doing it spontaneously in the past, and want to do it a little more seriously from now on! We’ll see what happens.

In any case, if you decide not to check my Sponsor Info page I’ll just tell you RIGHT here that I am offering free ad space on my sidebar for your blog button! All you have to do is put my blog button on your sidebar, and we’re set to go! You can e-mail me or leave a comment if you’re interested.

2- I am EXTREMELY excited for summer. As of April 24th, I am FREE!

There’s almost nothing I love more than summer in my city!

3- I’m also very excited for April 22nd (next Sunday) because I have a pair of tickets for Cirque du Soleil AMALUNA in Montreal. I bought the tickets for my mom for her birthday in February, and we’ve both been counting down the days as it approaches!

4- Every time summer gets closer, I find myself falling into the trap of those really catchy, summery songs on the radio. Here is my guilty pleasure playlist lately:

+Starships by Nicki Minaj

+Feel so Close by Calvin Harris

+Wild Ones by Flo Rida feat. Sia

+Part of Me by Katy Perry

+Summer Paradise by Simple Plan feat. Sean Paul

+What Makes You Beautiful by One Direction (I KNOW GUYS. IT’S JUST SO CATCHY)

+Give Your Heart a Break by Demi Lovato

Okay I’m done, I swear. That is the weirdest music I’ve ever written about around here. What can I say? Sometimes a song is just TOO catchy. I’ll make up for it with some good music next week, I promise.

5- If you follow me on Twitter, you may have caught my vague tweets about an interview for a job last week. On Friday I was officially confirmed and I got it! I thought I would talk about it briefly now as it will probably come up a lot more in the coming year. The position is for a major organization at my University. Basically, we choose a charity, organize an event, and raise a ridiculous amount of money for that charity. I got the position of VP Public Relations, which basically means I’ll be taking care of writing all the media/press releases and helping with some of the promotional aspects of the events. I’m really excited to be volunteering my extra time for charities, and I’m even MORE excited to see what fun things we plan this year! You can follow along on the organization’s Twitter right here, and find out more about the charities we’ll be giving back to in the coming school year.

That’s all I’ve got for now! Just a little update on life in general. It’s really been all school, work, school, work around here, but that’s always what April is about what with finals and summer and other fun things.

What’s going on with you today?!

Currently… #3

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Hope everyone had a lovely Easter weekend! It kind of seems like a while since I’ve just written about life in general, and I always happen to find this type of post an easy way to play catch up on what’s been going on!

Currently… 

Reading

As I write this, I’m about to finish up an advanced reader’s copy of Insurgent by Veronica Roth. It’s the sequel Divergent which came out last May. To be honest, I haven’t been loving it. I had REALLY high expectations for this book, but I set those aside long ago. I think a lot of people will really love it, but I’m kind of feeling like Roth is steering this series into a place that I wasn’t expecting, and it’s not really my style. That being said, it really picked up around page 300 so I’m excited to finish it. 100 more pages to go!

Listening

Our Lady Peace. Their new album is pretty good, but I’ve been listening to their Greatest Hits since last Monday when they were in Montreal for a show. I didn’t have the chance to watch their set which is a SHAME because they always put on a fantastic show. I did however get to watch Raine Maida sound check the song “Thief’ and honestly, current favorite song. He is a musical genius. I also had the opportunity to interview Jeremy, the drummer of OLP. He was one of my very first interviews about three years ago when I first started working for CONFRONT, so it kind of felt like my journalist career was coming around full circle. Interviewing the same big-time Canadian artist twice is something that I am VERY fortunate to be able to say that I have done.

The Ting Tings. I reviewed their newest album ‘Sounds From Nowheresville’ on my blog last week & I must admit it’s grown on me even more since then. I also had the chance to interview Katie, half of the musical duo, on Saturday night on the phone. She was SUCH a sweetheart it was an absolute pleasure. She has the most charming British accent, I’ll be honest it kind of felt like I was interviewing a Spice Girl. Plus she loves SG so it worked out well, ha. 🙂

– I’ve actually had a few other albums on repeat this last week or so, and I’ll be doing a little re-cap on the rest of them later in the week, probably! So much amazing music has been popping up in the last month or two, it’s time I start sharing some of it!

Watching

Community. Why am I so late on this show? IT IS HILARIOUS YOU GUYS. I’m well into season 1 now and I am just secretly so happy I have three whole seasons of the funny-ness to watch. It is so weird but so, so fun to watch.

Best Friends Forever. I downloaded the pilot episode a few days ago (the show just started) and I was laughing the entire way through. It’s a new sitcom, and I really hope there are new episodes coming up. It’s so funny!

Needing

– I seem to write this with every ‘Currently’ post I write, but I still find myself needing more time. I’m hoping to resolve this issue with my April goals of tackling procrastination, but so far I haven’t had much luck because I seem to be LOSING time rather than finding more of it. Long story short, I ended up losing 5 prime hours on Saturday morning/afternoon and I could have really used my day off to do homework and chores and things like that.

To book a vacation. I found myself gazing at this cup I keep on my desk where I collect various shells, rocks & coins from my travels around the world. There are a lot of things from all the beaches I visited from Greece as well as the volcano I climbed, and I’m just itching to find new things to add in there. I need to travel!

More days spent with my nephew! It seems like forever since I’ve written about my favorite little boy, but he is still growing and getting more of a personality each time I see him. I wish I had more free days to see him, but with finals that just isn’t possible. Luckily photos like the ones below happen to surface on Facebook and in my e-mail with the heading ‘BAD BOY FOR LIFE’ and that makes it a little bit easier. I can’t wait for the summer to see his cute little face more!

Avoiding

– Homework. Studying. But is that anything new? Not at all. This week though, regardless of my ridiculous work schedule, I’m getting my work done and I’m going to NOT procrastinate. That’s the deal I have with myself & I refuse to take no for an answer. From myself. That sounded less weird in my head…

Loving

– Drinking too much coffee. Why must it be just SO delicious?!

– The fact that classes are over for 5 whole months. WHAT! In 2 exams I am free for 4 months!

MY BRAND NEW HARRY POTTER SCENE IT GAME. Yes. Love. Indulging in my obsession/addiction, needing to find more people to play with!

Now that you’re all caught up… What’s currently going on in your life?!