I have a lifestyle blog that follows me, a thirty something female business women that styles and smiles her way through her daily grind. You can find other daily grind life subjects like shopping, career, fitness, adventures and the like!
We decided to head down to Rattray Marsh Conversation Area to see the fall leaves but the walk over from the beach was especially beautiful.
I planned to snap a few pictures while we were there for instagram but when I got back and looked at what I had taken…I couldn’t just pick one or two photos I liked to post so I’ll let them have their own life in a blog post.
The moon was starting to shine amongst the setting sun. It was nestled comfortably within the clouds like a puffy duvet.
A wooden walkway cricks and cracks amongst the shifting weight. Surrounding the populated path are knocks of woodpeckers, bugs playing violins with their legs, and birds chirping a melody.
Although we’ve been to this conservation area before we found somewhere new to explore. A displaced and broken man made vessel is bordered by rock formations right at the breach of the sand banks.
On our walk back it was deserted enough that I could capture the scenery I spotted on the way in. Like the trees decorated in red ribbon like leaves as if they were dressing for the night to come.
We finally went to a location that called for many pictures to be taken. It was such a pretty spot that there was three wedding parties taking photos while we were there. It was surprising that everyone worked around eachother so easily.
I snapped one photo from afar of a bridal party.
Your wowed as soon as you walk up to the property. It has a well maintained garden surrounding the whole house.
It’s in the port credit area and right off the water so I can see why so many wedding parties would want to shoot here.
The outfit I choose for this adventure is a top I literally have had since high-school. There has been several times I’ve thought about giving it away, but just couldn’t bring myself to…It’s still in such good condition.
The pants are from RW.co…they are my favourite colour. I styled the outfit with some golden details: rings and necklace to compliment the golden details on the shirt.
Lastly the hairstyle I choose was naturally dried hair so very bushy haha and I pulled it back with a head band.
We found a waterfall that we haven’t visited within travelling distance in Ontario. Its called Balls Falls in Lincoln Ontario. It’s our first official hike of the year. I joined a challenge called “January Hiking Challenge” to get out at least five times in January for an Ontario Hike.
I normally pick my best photo from the bunch, or my most beloved, and post to instagram. But I always think all the photos are so pretty, so instead I’ll be writing a blog post about each of these hiking trails with lots of beautiful imagery.
Balls Falls is actually a pretty easy hike. There are multiple trails with the longest at a max of 1.7km.
The trails were pretty mucky… so very slippery, especially without proper shoe attire. But I wanted there to be at least a light snow fall for our first hike of the year. Even if it followed days on rain.
The conservatory was so pretty with a lot of historical buildings. We definitely want to come back when the park has all facilities open. As you can see below, we took a sneak peak inside the buildings!
There are actually two waterfalls at this location. A lower one that is a short walk from parking….near all the historical buildings. Another is at the end of the loop of the longest trail.
I didn’t capture the upper waterfall unfortunately! My phone died right as we got to the lookout point. I normally plug in my phone in the car since the navigation kills my phone. Ah! Lessons learned.
I hope you enjoyed coming along with me on this hike. Let me know you enjoyed this type of blog post by liking or commenting below!!
Most people agree that 2020 has been a sh*t show of a year. Like most, my goals for 2020 were wildly thrown off track; but there are three things I’ve learned in 2020 that I want to bring with me into the New Year.
I had so many goals for 2020. I had my beautiful new agenda (that went to waste) to keep track of my progress and everything I wanted to get done. My goals were mostly towards getting sh*t done that I have been sitting on for awhile and health goals. Consistently 2020 threw me for a loop in terms of what I had planned for myself.
1. Ability to fail with grace and forgiveness
I have always picked myself up after my failures… its just a minor set back until I succeed. I am a very goal oriented person, and I will always pick myself up after a failure and try again. BUT, I can be very hard on myself.
2020 gave me a reason to fail with grace and forgiveness. No one was expecting that everyone keep succeeding at the same pace they were before, we were all stressed out by the current world we live in.
So when I consistently fell off, tried again, fell off, decided to make baby (I mean BABY) steps… until i saw progress in ONE thing at a time. I always fell back to forgiving myself and trying again. I want to keep this grace moving into the New Year. Leave obsession behind and lead with grace.
2. Early Morning Intentions
A major factor that helped me keep trying last year was waking up early (I mean 5am, and I don’t have to log into work at home until 9am). Each morning I would wake up when my little family was still sleeping, make myself a coffee, reflect, listen to the news, and workout.
This had an amazing effect on my moods. I have never been a morning person. In fact, I would be the coworker that would ask why you were smiling in the morning (obviously only to people that “got me” and would just laugh like “oh, tash.”) Until I had my coffee, work and pleasantries had to wait.
When I had a morning to reflect and workout prior to speaking with anyone or starting work. I was smiling, I was extremely up beat and a ‘Morning Person’.
This took a tremendous amount of effort on my part, as it goes against my natural rhythm. If I went to bed when my body told me… I would go to bed around 2 and wake up at 10am.
But as a early riser, I was happier and more productive as I already got my workout in as the sun came up.
I started reading again. I found books on our book shelf that didn’t have a cracked spine, and blew threw them. I purchased a number of indigenous novels about the Indian Act and feminism. With all the racial tension that happened throughout 2020, I had a awakening inside to connect with my heritage. And I did this through reading, learned alot of history and had lots of discussions with my man on our shared experiences.
Since I started reading, a member of my team at work offered up a meditation novel to borrow. Previously, I might have passed but so many people of suggested that I would love meditation… so I gave it a shot. Although the language (based in love and religion) doesn’t suit me, I learned to read underneath the language to the principles of what was being taught. I realized that alot of the meditation techniques, I practiced myself in keeping up with my mental health.. naturally. I took what I hadn’t been practicing and added to my repertoire.
My reading this year definitely lead to an enlightenment of my spirit and mind and I want to continue this growth into the new year.
Thanks for reading, I hope that what 2020 has taught you will stay with you into the New Year!
It seems like the only shopping I do lately is thrift shopping. The clothes just have more personality and you get way more bang for your buck.
I thought I would compile all my latest photos where I used my newest purchases.
This cozy top above, I knew I would get alot of wear out of. Its something I would wear just chilling around the house and something cute enough to style up!
I have been living in this green street wear top. Its perfect for pandemic-styling lately, because it seems everyone is living in lounge wear and matching sets!
My favourite purchase was this oversized brown trench coat. I needed a new winter coat, and I haven’t had one at this length before. It definitely keeps me cozy warm and stylish!
I get super excited when I see loud prints when I’m thrifting. This dress stood out amongst the racks of other dresses with a loud pop of colour. It feels like a cross between Minnie Mouse and Mrs. Maisel vibes. I have a stylish 50s hat, and some gloves that could really sell the Mrs. Maisel look!
I usually don’t like preppy clothes, but this little number of a dress was adorable. I loved the built in band around the waist to accentuate the smallest part of the body. I was scared that my hips wouldn’t fit since the shape was very rectangle. But YAY I could squeeze into it!!
There are a few pieces I have yet to style. You can see everything I bought in the video below.. Three shirts in particular that I bought for work. If you would like to see me style and post some work outfit inspo… let me know with a like and comment! 🥰
So I’ve been sitting on this blog post for awhile. I have been noticing changes to my body composition, as I was putting on muscle but the scale wasn’t moving. Let’s talk about that!
Since I have been sharing my fitness journey online, mostly instagram stories, people started to mention that they are noticing changes to my body as well. That told me that people may be ready for this post.
This is my second fitness journey, the first was quite awhile ago and my goal was to lose weight. I broke down weight loss to its bare basics that caloric deficit = weight loss… no matter the nutrition or the loss of muscle along the way. I just wanted to see the scale shrink.
I didn’t want to land in that obsessive behavior again this time on my fitness journey, so I did a lot more research on nutrition and started incorporating small healthy changes to my diet [more on this later]. My goal this time was to be toned, and gain muscle mass.
I started this journey midst the pandemic, because like I alot of people I gained a pandemic 15 pounds. The road wasn’t easy, and I fell off a lot of times. I am an emotional eatter and being stuck at home during a tumultuous time just meant that I was a couch potatoe and ate a bunch of junk . So instead of getting upset that I couldn’t get that under control, I decided to make my goal consistent workouts. So the first few months, I just focused on getting my workout in and working on bettering my form and getting stronger. I would celebrate every day I got up and moved even if I ate bad.
My nutrition was maybe like 50/50 for eating healthy and then days of Mcdonalds/pizza/chips etc. But I built myself consistently to become quite active, even working out twice a day. The extra calories actually became effective for building muscle.
Once I started seeing changes in my body and abilities in my workouts, I stepped on the scale. Absolutely no change….nothing. that was very disheartening but I was perplexed and decided to check my measurements. There it was…my body was changing, inches were being lost but the scale wasn’t moving. I was turning my fat to muscle, and muscle weighs more than fat.
Just take a peak at these two photos. The left is 162 at the beginning of the year pre-pandemic weight gain. The right is 171 after turning fat into muscle. This was absolutely shocking to me, my measurements were close to before my weight gain but I was ten pounds heavier!! If I just focused on the scale, I would have took a deep dive into depression because I wasn’t seeing results.
But my experience with tracking my weight via scale only and tracking without has taught me the scale is pure fuckery… for the following reasons.
1. Muscle Mass – muscle weighs more than fat. And just because the scale isn’t moving, doesn’t mean you are not showing results as per the photo above.
2. Natural fluctuations – your body naturally varies weight during the day and month. This would throw me for a loop when I was obsessively tracking it daily. You weigh more at night. After a salty or bad meal you’ll see weight gain that will be gone in a day or two. And for women, we gain during our time of the month. I gain two pounds and two inches of bloat around my waist. If I didn’t know this, I could see it being very disheartening for someone tracking their weight only by scale.
3. Mental Health- as I have been demonstrating above…the scale can have negative effects on your mental health and it can become an obsession or even throw your whole day off. Don’t step on the scale. Keep moving towards your goals daily. Its much better to track your results once you start to notice change, as a mood booster that your hard work is paying off. If you dont see results on the scale – check some things i mentioned: are your clothes fitting better? Your measurements better? Have you had a bad meal? Are you carrying bloat? This ALL matters and factors into how you should respond to that number.
With all that being said, some of you have come for the result comparison photos. So here they are!!
Weight loss: 178 to 171 [7 pounds]
Arms: from 13 inches to 12
Chest: no change
Waist: 35 inches to 34
Hips: 44.5 inches to 45 [gained some booty muscle]
Thighs: 26 inches to 24
I’m so proud of how far I’ve come..especially since I didn’t take it all on at once. I just focused on being active even if I couldn’t get my eating under control during a stressful time. The workouts helped with my moods as well. Win win!!
Now that I have my workouts down, I have decided to start my “cut.” Meaning that I will be shedding off the fat around the muscle I have built. This means that my next two months will be focusing on my nutrition. Nutritious meals at least 5/7 days of week. And I will be changing up my workouts as well. No more two a days with weights and cardio, instead it will be a single HIT insanity workout.
Check back in a couple months with me. See if I have been able to stick to nutritious meals, which admittedly will be hard for me. See if I am able to stick to the Insanity Workout program, because historically I haven’t been able to. This will be a true test for me…these next few months.
I would really appreciate any support and encouragement!
This has got to be the cutest town that me and the man have ever traveled to. We have been here before, but we have never explored the town itself just the conservatories within. But at the centre of the town is a historic district off the water and I must have said “omg this place is so cute” more than 10 times.
I researched a few places that I wanted to check out that were photograph worthy and we headed out a couple hours before dusk. I used to prefer shooting as the first thing to do during the day…but the sunlight is just not ideal at that time. I’m slowly learning…
Outfit Number 1 – Golden Romper Delight
I actually planned this location because of the stoned stairwell behind me in this photograph but they had it locked off. Oh well…they had pretty gardens surrounding and the beautiful Elora Gorge
My man picked out this backdrop for a portrait shot. It really turned out well. Perfect to show off the details of this outfit and my makeup!
Outfit 2 – Courthouse Belle
I have had this dress for so long. I continue to breathe new life into the dress with different styling and accessories. This ribbon belt and polka dot heels really make this dress pop!
By our second location, the Golden hour was starting and it was absolutely beautiful.
The third location was within the downtown core of Elora. The man Street was blocked off to vehicles and people on patios took over the streets. Everyone was unbelievably friendly and more than a few people stopped to say hello to our pup.
However we didn’t stop for anything to eat, we just took in the splendor of this quaint town. There was a location called seven doors that brought me there.
Outfit 3 – Bubblegum Cuteness
Seven doors isn’t actually tagged or listed on Google so I wasnt sure how I was going to find it…but we were walking along taking everything in and I pointed out this cute building with flowers…that just so happened to be right beside the seven doors. Haha
The whole main area on Metcalf Street was adorable and cuteness overload.
I was reading a Narcity Canada article that recommended Ontario Locations if your a Disney Princess at heart, and I came across this Rapunzel looking tower and I knew I had to make a style adventure weekend out to kitchener.
I was imagining a flowing dress (I realized I have like NONE) but I had a dress that was a first purchase reject brides maid dress that was golden like Rapunzels hair and I knew it was PERFECT!
Ahhhh it came out exactly how I was picturing it. That hardly ever happens for me when planning style adventures. You never know what the locations are going to throw at you, or if your outfit/hair will come out exactly how you want, OR if me and the man will be vibing that day and can get on the same page to make ‘the shot!’
The dress has a super high slit which is very the brand I.e. my first Fashion Nova purchase. Since I have been rocking alot more curves lately…. I might start making more purchases there for sure!
I was planning to have my hair in a braid to the side…. with possibly some embedded flowers throughout, like the movie Tangled. I decided against it and instead only give a nod to Rapunzel and rock my own brown locks the way I would as a native princess.
Fun Fact: while shooting this look some guys stood outside their truck and just watched us do our photo shoot. This is probably the look I am giving in this photo. BUT I kinda liked it, “excuse me, this is my land, off with his head!”.
I was definitely feeling this look. For the heels I choose the colour that Rapunzel actually wears… purple. The heels actually have golden studs as well on them, but none of the photos can really see that (oh well! Haha).
I hope you enjoyed coming along while I played Disney princess dress up. I had a lot of fun creating this blog post!
Do you have that one dress that brings you joy when you see, as it’s such a beautiful dress… but you never wear it?
I wanted to do a style adventure shoot for that dress. That dress that makes you feel bomb when you wear it. The dress that only probably gets worn once during your life or twice if your lucky. To remind you to take that dress out for a wear yourself.
I bought this dress from hudson bay for a friends wedding. It was actually a pretty heavy dress for a summer wedding, but it was too gorgeous to pass up plus it was on sale.
This time I would style it for winter, and I had this idea of a snow queen. A royal look that also was very practical for nature.
For the location I wanted to be surrounded by snow and nature. Rockwood conversatory has many beautiful snow filled paths that I thought would be perfect to shoot in. But then I seen this cobble stone building, which seemed like a type of home that a snow queen would live in out in the middle of nowhere within the forest.
“Real power is control. Knowing that you can do anything…and not doing it only because you can“