november goals

I cannot believe that we’re almost completely through 2016. this year has been full of incredible growth for me as a person; there have been lots of good times and lots of tough times, but overall I would say 2016 has been pretty bomb. 

just because the year is winding down doesn’t mean that it’s time to coast through these last two months. I still have goals and plans for 2016, and I thought I would share what I’m working on this november. I decided that I would link-up with kristen and jordyn today because they're cute and I like them, I like meeting new bloggers, and I like link-ups. 

one / participate in no-spend november. this month some coworkers and I are challenging ourselves to stop mindless spending (and to save a little money for the holidays). obviously we’re still spending on essentials, like bills, groceries and transportation costs, but no eating out, no mindless shopping, no coffee out. it’s gonna be tough, especially during one of the biggest shopping months of the year, but I think it’ll be worth it.

two / practice meditative breathing. this time of year is a really happy one for many reasons, but can also be really stressful and tiring. every day I want to spend at least 5 minutes practicing meditative breathing; luckily I do have an apple watch so I’ll be using the breathe app to keep up this healthy habit.

three / hit the gym at least three times per week. I’m happy to share that I’ve now lost about 25 pounds, just by eating plenty of whole foods and being more active. I’ve officially just signed up with a personal trainer to take muscle-building to the next level, and my goal is to get a workout in at least three times each week in november (if you want to see a post with an update on my weight loss journey, let me know!).

four / clean out my storage closet. as I’ve been practicing minimalism in my personal life, I’ve gotten rid of so many of my belongings and organized so much of my house. overall, my house is pretty well kept, but I do have one very embarrassingly messy closet in my house (think monica’s secret closet from friends). since this month I’ll be decorating for christmas, it seems like the perfect time to get my storage closet into shape.

so that’s what I’ll be working on this month. I’m already devastated by no-spend november because the starbucks christmas drinks have officially come out! hopefully my goals will be worth a peppermint mocha-free november. 

what are your goals this month?

my tattoo story

on my birthday this past year, I got two new tattoos. although I booked the appointment a week in advance, it was a semi-impulsive decision.

when I booked the appointment, I didn’t even know for sure what I was going to get. making the appointment required putting down a non-refundable deposit, which was terrifying. 

I was thinking of getting some mountains as a tattoo, but I hadn’t seen a single drawn mountain that I wanted on my skin (much less for life). I mentioned this to my tattoo artist and she said she would sketch some things for me.

the week leading up to my birthday was actually filled with intense anxiety and nervousness as I realized that I didn’t know what I wanted. I started playing around with various fonts of a phrase I’d found years earlier and asked my friend Clara, a handwriting guru, to write it out for me. as she sent me samples, I started to feel more confident that this would be my new tattoo… until I realized that I didn’t know where on my body I wanted it! I realized that I really wanted it on my wrist but I was freaked out at the thought of having a tattoo that would be mostly visible at any given time - my only other tattoo is on my foot and can be easily covered up with the right pair of shoes! 

when I showed up at the studio, I showed the hand-written phrase to my tattoo artist and asked if we could sticker it onto my wrist in a few places so I could decide how I felt about it. at the same time, she pulled out a hand-drawn mountain range that she’d sketched for me and I loved it. when I asked how much it would be to get both, she said it would be the same price as it’s an hourly charge… so I decided to get both (the most financially responsible decision, right? how could I not?).

I absolutely love both of my new tattoos, and despite my lack of planning both of them instantly became incredibly meaningful to me.

the mountains I got as a testament to my ability to conquer my anxiety. while anxiety has been a part of my life for as long as I remember, I will always be stronger than the stress and will grow every time I am faced with panic. over the course of this past summer, I fell in love with hiking and challenging myself in nature; I thought that mountains would be the perfect representation of pushing myself beyond my anxiety. I think this is the first time I’ve publicly shared a picture of this tattoo - it’s immensely personal to me. 

ad maiora is latin for ‘towards greater things.’ in my mind, this phrase is a challenge to keep growing, to keep learning and to keep pushing myself to be my best (especially in the face of difficulty). I’ve kept this phrase as a bit of a mantra for the past few years; it’s a reminder to keep moving forward, and that my future is filled with wonderful things. I deeply love this tattoo - not only is it beautiful, it’s very inspirational on a personal level. 

so these are my new tattoos, and I love that I got them as a quarter-century-marker. while I still don’t feel 25, I do feel like I’ve grown tremendously as a person and these tattoos illustrate that for me. 

do you have any tattoos? do they have big stories or meaning to them?

currently: a fall catch-up

it’s already snowing here in Edmonton, so I feel like fall is over and winter has started. I was even itching to start putting up Christmas decorations today! despite the fact that I feel Christmas is a 3-month period, I resisted the urge to bust out my wreaths and tree by lighting some fall scents from bath & body works and making some soup. 

it’s been a long time since we’ve caught up so I wanted to share a few of my current favourites and hear about what you’ve been up to!

C U R R E N T L Y

[watching] the good place - there is something about kristen bell’s new show that makes me so happy! it’s funny, heartwarming and the perfect 20-minute length to watch before bed.

[reading] the crown - I’m embarrassingly obsessed with the selection series. the friend who recommended it to me described it as ‘the hunger games meets the bachelor,’ which is a perfectly accurate description.

[listening] the arkells - I first heard the arkells at a music festival at the beginning of september and I instantly fell in love with them. their stage presence shows just how much they love making music, and they’re canadian!

[planning] my trip to montreal this coming february!

[making] superfood salad to bring to work for lunches this week.

[feeling] relaxed. 

what have you been up to so far this fall? I need to hear about all of your favourite things! xo.

july goals

Happy Canada Day! Canada Day is always such a fun day to celebrate. a friend and I have a tradition of playing at a park on Canada Day, but this year I think we’re going to head to the Edmonton Prospects baseball game. the baseball field has a great view of the fireworks area, so I’m excited for that!

july is also my birth month, so it’s kind of one of my favourite months of the year. this july is stacking up to be pretty fun - I’m planning my 25th birthday celebration (I can’t believe I’m going to be 25!), going camping and going hiking. but, just because july is a fun month doesn’t mean that I’m not setting goals! here are my goals for this month.

one / eat better. I know this sounds fairly basic to have as a goal, but I’ve honestly been working on it for about 2-3 weeks now because I know that getting into shape is only going to get harder from here. in the last 2-3 weeks I’ve been working on it, I’ve actually lost 14 pounds!! I just really want to stay focused on eating a very nutritious diet (and not something that is necessarily just low calorie) through july, and to do enough research on veganism that I can decide permanently.

two / hobbies. I realized on a road trip a couple weeks ago that I don’t have a lot of hobbies. I’ve been into writing for a long time, but I feel like the majority of what I do is hang out with people, watch netflix/movies and eat food. when I realized this, I decided that I wanted to spend some time discovering new hobbies. I’ve picked up hiking, slack lining and running in the last couple of weeks. the goal for july is to try as many new things as possible, and to spend more time hiking and slack lining.

three / hiking. speaking of hiking… I found that I loved it and I want to do it more. I read a study recently that suggested hiking can change your brain chemistry and make it easier to handle depression and anxiety. in the month I’ve been ‘into’ hiking, I have definitely noticed a change in my stress levels and I am way less anxious overall. this makes me want to keep doing it! my goal is to do at least one hike per week in july.

four / journalling project. I’ve been a big fan of Try with Lucie for a really long time on Refinery 29, and her journalling video inspired me. this month I’m going to try out 4 different types of journalling (one for each week of the month), and write a blog post on each one after I’ve tried it. 

five / minimalism & interior design. I want to get more into minimalism. I’m not sure if it’s something you could call a hobby, but I really enjoy decorating and styling my house in a minimalistic way. I also want minimalism to become one of the main topics for this blog, so I feel like I need to have a better understanding of it. this month, I want to read more books and watch more documentaries on the subject, and hopefully redesign my blog to reflect these changes.

so, those are my goals for this month! it feels like a few of them are a bit lofty, but I have next steps lined up for each of them. 

what are your goals for this month?

june goals

friends. wow. it has been such a long time since I’ve shown up here, and I am sorry.

life got very hectic back in march and didn’t slow down until this past week. I was burnt out, exhausted and just trying to keep up with all of the mandatory parts of my life - unfortunately this blog took a hit during that time. today, erin wrote a fantast blog post about balance, and it inspired me to come back here. I’m sitting here in my sweaty apartment, listening to that new bon iver, having the best soup I’ve ever made, and finally showing up on my blog. hello! I missed you!

in the last few months I had amazing times (seeing Bey, hiking, road trips) and hard times (primarily governed by my anxiety flaring back up), and through it all I feel like I’ve been growing so much. even though I haven’t been writing here all that much, you’ve been on my mind. I want this blog to be an exploration of minimalism and a space to document my attempts at adulting, in addition to the lifestyle blog that it’s become - I hope you’re as excited about that as I am.

to keep things consistent with who I am (and despite the fact that we are a quarter of the way through this month), I thought that today I would share my goals for this month!

one / make all of my meals at home. as I’m sure I’ve said hundreds of times before, I’m not a great cook. I’m working on that this month by making all of my food myself. so far, so good.

two / get outside. I really want to be more comfortable outside and get more exercise from things like hiking, canoeing and slacklining. this is off to a bit of a strange start this month (one hike in a thunderstorm, one hike resulting in getting very, very lost and being severely dehydrated), but I am actually very proud of myself for pushing myself so far outside of my comfort zone.

three / try new hairstyles. I feel like my signature look is ‘got out of the shower, brushed my wet hair, called it done.’ I’ve already been experimenting with braids and topknots, but I need some serious hair suggestions!

                     I recently tried these halo braids and felt like a princess all day - if you want a tutorial let me know!

                     I recently tried these halo braids and felt like a princess all day - if you want a tutorial let me know!

four / take care of me. now that life is slowing down, I can spend my time doing the things that make me happy - eating on my patio, discovering new music, reading books and sharing good times with good people.

what are your goals this month? what have I missed the past few months? xo.