Sunday, 15 January 2017

30 Day Challenge


That's me skating somewhat steadily at our local community centre this afternoon. It was a beautiful day to get outside and we almost didn't make it out! As I mentioned in my last post, it's been crazy cold here and we've been hunkering down at home and staying warm. But all that indoor sedentary time started creeping in and affecting my mood.

But today! Today the weather took a welcome turn and wouldn't you know that by 3 pm we were all still inside! (I had actually gone out to that spin class I mentioned in my last post, and Jason had been out for a bit, but the kids were still inside and could have easily let the whole day pass without leaving.) I knew we had to force ourselves to get up and get OUT. It was too beautiful outside to miss out, and I was starting to feel that blanket of melancholy setting in that has been all too familiar lately. Fresh air and outdoors was the only antidote.

So we bundled up (over-bundled actually - it was so beautiful!) and went for a skate. I  am so glad we did! That blanket of sadness shed itself and we all enjoyed being outside skating on our neighbourhood rink. Juliette is getting SO GOOD on skates! She was gliding more than ever today. She totally loves it, which leads me to believe I may spend more time in a rink in the coming years than I had previously envisioned. Miles is happy to glide around in his daddy's arms for now.




Okay, so all this, combined with my amazing workout at WPG-Cycle this morning, sparked an idea. I've been trying to really unpack all the feelings of sadness and gloom that I've been carrying around since the new year. And I've known all along that exercise, a good diet and time spent outdoors would work wonders in elevating my mood. But I was stuck and I just couldn't get UNstuck. But today I did! And it felt so good to get active.

So I am challenging myself to exercise my body everyday for 30 days. I have a weekly plan: I'm going to to attend two classes a week (1x spin and 1x The Fitual - an amazing ful body cardio + strengthening workout), also 3x at-home workouts/yoga DVD's, and 2x or 3x outdoor skate/run/walk to round it out.

I know that moving my body will contribute positively to my overall mental health and wellbeing. (The more you do, the more you wanna do, right?) So I need to make an earnest effort to do this for myself and for my family. It's been so hard since going back to work after mat-leave with Miles ended to find (let's face it, make) the time to workout. Summertime was a little bit easier but even then I was only running/working out two or three days a week. And I'm just not sure that's enough. Not every workout will be a sweat-fest like this morning's spin. Yoga days will be a little more chill and walking days will be refreshing. But I'll do something. Everyday. 30 days.

Today was day one. :)


Saturday, 14 January 2017

2017 and stuff





Well, here I am about to write another random post six or seven months after the last random post I wrote... Ha! Maybe I shouldn't even bother.

That last sentence kind of sums up how the first two weeks of 2017 have been going for me. First of all, it's cold AF in Winterpeg. Like bone-chilling-can't-expose-your-skin-for-more-than-20-seconds kind of cold. So, any kind of outdoor activity winds up getting turfed for the comforts of a warm home. Then there's exercise, or should I say lack thereof in 2017. I keep on reading everyone's resolution posts and "gonna get in shape" posts since the new year and I'm just like, "where are you people finding your MOTIVATION???" Ugh. I've had none. Nada.

Then someone told me that this Monday coming up (happens to be January 16 but the specific date will change every year) is the most depressing day of the year. Here's why: the holidays are over and (if you live in a climate like mine) it's cold AF and there's no end in sight. Also, credit card bills are coming in from the holidays and that's always a drag. And there's nothing else coming up right away to get excited about. Summer is a LONG way off and it just kind of feels like monotony sets in. Top it all off with the fact that it's a Monday and DAMN, that's one bad day.

So, this is all sounding a bit depressing right? Sorry! But here's the thing - when I heard that little factoid it actually made me feel better. I've been in a funk for the last week or so and when I realized it might not actually be me and my own lack of get-up-and-go but there's like an actual social studies kind of science behind it, I felt so much better. Like I could stop being hard on myself and just accept that maybe I've fallen into a bit of a seasonal rut. So rather than just stay in said rut, now that I had some knowledge, I could pull myself out of it a bit.

So I cleaned my bathroom! (Because when you feel a little depressed, cleaning your bathroom always falls to the bottom of the to do list.) And we had family over for Indian food tonight. I also made plans to take a spin class with a friend on Sunday morning. All of the sudden that little piece of puzzle called motivation started creeping back in.

Then I decided to take a walk down memory lane and looked at some old blog posts. You know, seeing as I was on a roll and all. Low and behold this one popped off the page and inspired me. And apparently others too because it has like a gajillion more hits than any of my other posts. Ha! Okay, not a gajillion, but seriously you guys, a lot of hits! Seems I am still seeking the hard fought lessons and the truths I discuss in that post.

Anyway, I am tapping into the blog again and hope to write with a little more frequency. I recently got a new computer, so that could help! But guys, I'm not making any promises, okay? Let's just see how it all goes. :)

Peace, love and happy new year.

Friday, 6 May 2016

First Time for Everything

Whoa! What? Am I writing a blog post?! Indeed I am. Over the last year or two a lot has changed. Namely, I had another baby (beautiful Miles), Juliette has grown into a delightful and sometimes devastatingly difficult 4.5 year old, and most recently I signed up for my first EVER half marathon(!!!).

More on family and other domestic matters later, today I want to write about running...

Last weekend, Jason and I ran the Winnipeg Police Half Marathon as a two-person relay. We did pretty well, in my opinion. We finished in a time of 2:09:34, which isn't terribly fast but considering Jason was a last minute stand in for my dear pal Pam who was ill and I, myself, was still recovering from a two-week illness, I'd say we did alright. :)

I was so pumped up from the experience, I registered to run the half marathon coming up on June 19!

I have been talking about running a half marathon for more years than I care to admit and for some reason or another, I've always found an excuse not to do it. Too busy. Pregnant. New baby. Untrained. And so on. And mind you, while the pregnancy and new baby excuses are totally legitimate, the others are not so much. Too busy? Not really. No matter how busy I am, I can always make a choice to find time to run. I am fortunate to have a supportive husband, friends and family who can help me with babysitting duties so that I can pound out a few miles. Soon I will be back at work from my maternity leave and rather than go out for lunch, I always have the choice to go for a run (I mean, I just happen to work in the city's most beautiful park!). So busy-ness, which has always been my number one reason, is actually not a valid reason at all. Untrained? Refer to what I just wrote busy-ness.

This morning, while pondering exactly why I haven't taken this step before, it finally dawned on me: FEAR. I have been afraid. Not necessarily afraid that I couldn't do it but afraid that I couldn't do it WELL. I have this messed up thinking that goes way, WAY back that if I can't do something perfectly then I shouldn't do it at all. And since I am a runner of the slow and somewhat steady variety, I didn't think I would be able to run it as fast as some of my friends who have been running half marathons for years. And OF COURSE I won't! They've been doing it for YEARS! I only just started running two or three years ago, and I've taken lots of running "breaks" in that time! They should be faster than me. That's obvious!

But my ego tells me that if I'm not going to do it as well as my peers, then why bother? And how lame is that? Is that the role model I want to be for my children? Um, no. Do I only want to accomplish a goal so that my friends and family can be impressed by how well I do it? Um, no. Am I running this for me or my ego? Um, me.

So here goes nothing! I have a time goal set, which is not very fast, but I think it's achievable. I'll post training updates on the blog as I go.  Wish me luck!

Are there any other runners out there training? Feel free to post any helpful training tips and tools in the comments, or just share your experience, I'd love to hear :)

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Everlane Tote


This year for my birthday, I got a new best friend. Just kidding! Sort of... What I'm referring to is my beautiful new Everlane Petra Tote. I'm pretty much in love with its clean, classic lines and rich cognac colour. It was a fairly extravagant gift, and I felt a bit bashful receiving it, but it will be my go-to bag for many years to come.

I'm pretty much in love with Everlane EVERYTHING these days. For Jason's birthday, to give his fall wardrobe a little update, I ordered him this, this and this. They were all very well received :)

The coolest part about shopping at Everlane is that they pride themselves on total total transparancy. They literally break down the cost of materials, labour and transport, then give you the 'real cost' and then their marked up retail cost. So you know exactly what the profit margins are. It's so dignified and honest! They also promote total transparancy of their factories and have an entire page on their website dedicated to showing the consumer where their products are made. I love this about Everlane! As a shopper, it just feels so good to know that you are supporting an ethical company that treats its suppliers and clients with respect. And they've done this all without sacrificing syle! Heck, they even won Jason over :)

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Riding Mountain Weekend Getaway



Last month, Jason, Juliette and I went on a lovely little weekend getaway to Riding Mountain, Manitoba. I've been meaning to post about it for a while now but haven't had a chance to get to it. So seeing as it's #tbt and autumn weather seems to be moving in, I thought I'd sneak in one more summer post before it's way past the point of appropriate.

Although we spend most of our weekends with friends and family at Victoria Beach in July and August, one weekend a summer we like to slip away and do our own thing with just the three of us (last year we day-tripped to Gimli). 

We decided on heading west to Riding Mountain after I found the sweetest little bed and breakfast online! Whirlpool Road B&B is a gorgeous home on 80 acres just outside of Riding Mountain National Park. They have horses, a pool, incredible views and the breakfasts were scrumptious (fritatta the first morning and a bacon and egg sandwich the next). 

The horses were BY FAR Juliette's favourite part of the entire weekend. She only got up close to them on our first morning though since there was so much land to roam. Most of the time we could just spot them grazing off in the distance and Juliette would yell, "I see them! I see the horsies! I see the horsies!" 

We drove into Clear Lake in the national park a few times. When I was little, my family used to go every summer. I calculated at dinner on our second night that the last time I had been in Clear Lake was 1987! The standout memory from that trip was my aunt cutting and crimping my hair. I loved it so much. Ha! Soooo 80's. The whole thing felt pretty nostalgic for me but also really new and fun, if that makes any sense. 

It was so nice to go away, just the three of us and have no schedule but our own. I'm extremely grateful to go to Victoria Beach every weekend, but sometimes when you go to the same place all the time you never have a chance to discover how beautiful other parts of the province are. This was definitely a big dsicovery for me in that way. I want to go back every year now :) Maybe next year we'll try camping?!

Here are a few pics from our weekend, if you'd like to have a peek...
On drive out there, which is stunning by the way, Juliette had to pee. So we pulled over on a gravel road and taught her how to pee outside. Ha! So cute. Then we looked around and the light and the views were so stunning, we had to stop to take a few pics...

There was a trampoline at the B&B. This meant that each and every time we were arriving or leaving, it was mandatory to stop and jump on it. Makes sense. Who can pass a trampoline and NOT stop to jump?




The views were just beautful everywhere you looked. As we were driving into the region, I was completely awe-struck. I kept saying, "are we really still in Manitoba?" It just looked so different from you typical prairie highways (which I LOVE. I'm a prairie girl through and through, after all).

There was a giant statue of a moose in Onanole, the little town just before Riding Mountain Park. Naturally we had to check him out...



And the horses... Oh those horses were the superstars of the weekend.

Juliette practiced pool jumping while here daddy caught her... about 1,000 times :)


We took a walk on the boardwalk...

And dipped our toes in the lake.

There was a parade in Clear Lake on Saturday afternoon! Mostly cool old cars and a few floats and everyone threw candy out the windows for the kids. This VW van was the coolest. It had  plants on it!

 And that was it! Until next year


Monday, 1 September 2014

36!



Another August birthday season has come and gone, and here I am, 36 years old. I'm pretty sure that makes it official: I'm a grown up.

I had the ultimate pleasure of inviting my friends over to our cabin on Saturday night (which was my actual b'day) for food, fun and tomfoolery. But mostly food. We BBQ'd a beef tenderloin (two, actually), roasted up some potatoes and the rest of the gang brought appetizers and salads. Everything was ridiculously delicious. Jason masterfully grilled the tenderloin (with some help) and it was only outdone by my dear friend Jessica's incredible three-layer chocolate mousse cake. Girl needs to open a bakery. Seriously. I just ate leftovers tonight that were so good the age old chocolate or sex debate was leaning heavy on the chocolate side.

I spent some time reflecting this weekend on just how lucky I am to have such a blessed life. I have a beautiful daughter and darling husband. Although both relationships can present challenges at times, they are also the most incredible humans I have ever known and allow me to strive to be my best me every day. And they both forgive me when I falter and love me anyway.

I have an amazing group of friends that are of the very real and true variety of friendship. Loyal, loving and supportive. It took me a while in this life to learn how to be a good and true friend, but my goodness, when the time came and I was ready I hit the JACKPOT. For reals.

My parents are my biggest cheerleaders on the planet and have never, ever made me feel unworthy or unloved. They have seen me through many ups and many downs, and they are my constant north star. I have a brother who has taught me to let my freak flag fly high and always stay groovy. And in-laws who have welcomed me into their homes and their hearts - and shared many, many delicious dinners with me.

Able body. Able mind (mostly - I'm getting there). Freedom. Freedom in my country. Freedom in my home.

There are a lot of people in places all over the world and right here in Winnipeg who couldn't dream up a life this good. My intention for my 37th year is to remember each and every day to be grateful for this life and find ways to give back. Pay it forward, if you will. I'm sure challenges will arise, but if I can remember to look at the big picture - the big AMAZING picture, that is my life, I'll manage to keep things in perspective.

Also, my mom tells me I'm in a personal year nine, which means all the work I've been doing in the last nine years will pay off. Pretty cool.

Here are some of my birthday party pics, if you'd like to see...








Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Short Hair, Don't Care!


Today was a good hair day*. Like a really good hair day. I felt like a million bucks all day long and every time I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror (which was often, 'cuz I can't pass a mirror and NOT look), I thought, "damn girl, your hair looks good." 

Do you ever think that? Do you ever really give yourself props when things are working for you? Because we're so trained, as women, living in this crazy culture of fame and beauty and perfection, to think we can do better. Look better. Thinner. Curvier. Taller. Shorter. Bustier. Bootier. Toned-er (okay, not a real word, I know). Sexier. Cuter. Smarter. Kinder. Cooler. And on and on and ON. It's exhausting and ridiculous.  

And I'm kind of over it. 

Here's my hair story: My whole life I have vascillated between short and long hairstyles. Everytime (okay, almost everytime, there was an unfortunate incident in 1992) I have worn my hair short, I have always received loads of compliments and people telling me how great my hair looks short. But I would always look at pretty girls with long locks and think, "I want to look more like that." And, inevitably, I would grow it back out.

I finally chopped it all off again this winter and I am so happy I did! It has only taken me 35 years, but I finally figured out that to look and feel good, I don't need to compare myself to others and try to mold me to look more like them! I just need to do what looks and feels right on me. Because I'm ME, not THEM. Whoever the heck 'they' even are, anyway!!!

Anyhow, it occurred to me that I posted my short hair inspiration a while back and then dropped off the blogosphere for a while, so you never got to see the new 'do! 

So, here it is! Ta-Daaaaa! :)

*Full disclosure: This photo was taken almost a month ago on my way from Victoria Beach to the Jay-Z and Beyonce** concert. I did not snap a pic of my hair today, but I promise you, it did look maawww-velous.

**They are totally NOT breaking up.
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