Thirty Six

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AS FEATURED ON SKECHERS CANADA SOCIAL MEDIA

Be unapologetically you.

If you love something, put your all into it.
If you want something bad enough, never give up on it.
If you’ve got dreams bigger than can fit in the windshield of your car, go after them.

BUT –
Never, ever let go of your authenticity; of your soul.

If you’re a member of the #OddSquad like I am, OWN IT BABY.

If dancing down the aisles of a Walmart while grocery shopping brings you joy, then shake that booty all the way into the freezer section.

If singing at the top of your lungs makes your heart flutter, then sing – everywhere.you.go.  It doesn’t matter if you think you’re good enough or not.  If it’s a passion of yours, then love it with everything you’ve got.

If becoming the league master of your online gaming community is all you’ve ever wanted, you better step up! (Note: I have no idea if being a league master is even a thing.  I don’t play online games, but if you do – then give’er! You do you, boo!)

If wearing crop tops, baggy boyfriend-shirts, short shorts, leggings, or any other piece of clothing makes you feel like a SUPREME GODDESS – YAS HONEY.  You need to rock that ish any chance you get, and don’t listen to what anyone else says about it.

Dream big, set goals, kick them out of the park! Karate chop the shit out of anything that gets between you and whatever it is that makes you happy.

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Most importantly:

Love yourself, and love your body – no matter what size or shape that it’s packaged in.

It is incredible, and so are you.

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Now let’s talk fashion!

Victoria’s Secret makes some of the most comfortable, flattering sportswear I’ve ever encountered.  I could NOT pass up the killer deal they had this past weekend as I was strolling through the mall.

Buy any sport bra top, and get any legging for $28?! WHAT. UH YES. I’ll take all of your remaining available stock, please. (Just kidding, because I am not the heir to an empire…)

But real talk… I couldn’t resist grabbing this adorable set to don at my Zumba class!

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Also, if you haven’t already been turned on to Skechers shoes – well I don’t even know what to say to you other than: you need to get into a Skechers store ASAP rocky and treat your feet to something so lush and comfy!

I mean – these shoes were practically made to match this outfit.
GOTTA MATCH ‘EM ALL, AMIRITE?

 

See what I did there… hehehe. Alright, I’ll see myself out now.

 

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Booty is POPPIN’ in these pants.  I also love the reflector details, which are great for highlighting your presence in dim lighting when a light source is shone on you…not that I’ll ever be using them in a situation that would require me to be seen in such a way.

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AND BONUS SHOT:

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I call this pose my “I DON’T WANNA”.  As in, for example:

*I don’t wanna attend an ACTUAL gym with you.  I’d rather just go to Zumba.
*I don’t wanna go to that place that is teeming with people and noise – today, or ever.
*I don’t wanna get out of bed, or have to adult in any way shape or form today.

You get the gist.

Thirty Five

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There’s something that I’m learning as I grow older and more wise.

Happiness has nothing to do with what’s around me.  It doesn’t come from the clothing I wear (okay maybe it does a little bit, when I find a comfortable pair of stretchy pants to allow for the growth of a just conceived food baby).  It doesn’t come from the makeup I experiment with, or the food I eat, the trinkets I collect to gather dust in my living room, or the new bag that I bought to match the shoes that also joined the family a few days earlier.

No, it doesn’t come from these things.  Not really.

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Sure, all of these things can make me happy – but it’s not true joy.  It’s a temporary high, and it’s gone just as fast as it comes.

Collecting possessions to bring myself happiness when I am not content within myself first means I will forever be on a search for something I will never find.

And this is where I have gone wrong for most of my life.

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Don’t mistake me by thinking that I don’t have a knack for pretty or interesting (or even luxurious) things – clearly, as Louis joined me in the making of this post.  But I grew too fond of them, and too beholden to them, that I couldn’t understand why I was never satisfied even though I was surrounded by so much material wealth.

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I was unhappy, and it was an unhappiness that brewed from deep within.  It took me letting go of a lot of my worldly possessions to begin to realize the err of my ways.

I took a long, hard look in the mirror and began to face everything that I’d buried under a mountain of clothing and shoes.  And the more I looked, the more the clothing and shoes disappeared, and the less and less that I missed them.  The more I looked, the stronger I craved experience, and memory-making, and getting out into the world to reconnect with what really matters.

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Happiness is a journey; it’s not something that comes from things.

It comes from me, and only me.  From within myself.  It comes from learning all about the facets that have created the being that I am today.  It comes from learning to love each of those plates, grouted together – some jagged as rock and some smooth as glass; each just as vital, regardless.

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It’s a hard fight to free yourself of the confines of our society.  If you’re like I am and you’ve been living within the “Everything Shiny and Everything New” era of today, then you realize how difficult it can be to divorce yourself from it.

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I don’t need the newest or the shiniest anymore;  I’ve realized there is no magic in those things.  The magic and the character come from having been pre-loved, and loved well (hint: this applies to your bags and yourself).  The more I think about it, the more I would rather have well-loved and well-known pieces in my collection that tell stories of where I’ve been and the adventures that I’ve had.

It’s a never-ending race to find the best and be the best, but you’re not competing against each other – you’re competing against yourself.  You will never see the finish line if you refuse to acknowledge this.

Protect your happiness and learn to walk away.  It’s not savage, it is necessary.  In a world that will do everything to break you down and keep you unhappy, it is absolutely pertinent.

“Less is more” is the old adage we’ve all more than likely heard many times.  I used to always brush it off, thinking nothing of it, but I see now the truth that hides behind it.

Less IS more.
Less technology in your life is more connection.
Less material wealth in your life is more freedom.
Less attention to celebrity media in your life is more love and acceptance of yourself.
Less hatred and jealousy toward your fellow beings is more community and love.
Less negativity in your life is more positivity surrounding you.
Less competition with others is more time for you and the things that really matter.

*None of the items featured in this post are new.  They have all been in my closet for relatively some time now, ranging from months to years.*

Thirty Four

Well hellooooooo.
I found a new love, and it’s not fashion.

This is why I have been MIA.  I’ve been thinking about climbing, learning about climbing, and doing the climbing.  It’s been amazing.

Actually, this whole year has been pretty incredible so far, but particularly these last few months.  I am learning SO much about myself, and I am just feeling so much more comfortable from every angle that I scope.  I’ve been discovering the authenticity that’s been hiding within all this time; it’s incredibly liberating.  The genuine happiness and care-free frolicking that follows is unmatched.

I am of the Earth element, and I am finding out that I am absolutely an Earth-bound soul.  I love to experience everything about the literal Earth that surrounds me.  Naturally, it only makes sense that hanging off a wall with my hands covered in chalk just feels like home.

Everything about climbing just feels like home.  It really nurses the gypsy heart that beats within my chest.  I am fast finding out just how wonderful, supportive and welcoming the climbing community is.  It’s packed full of good people; my kinda people.

I am so excited for this next adventure in my life, so I apologize now for the inevitable increase in flightiness and absence.  But as they say, you gotta follow your heart. 😉

Now, on that note – I did stumble upon (rather randomly) something that I’ve been struggling with basically since puberty.   That “tousled-beach-wave” look.  SERIOUSLY.  Why does the undone look take SO MUCH DOING?!

If you, too, have struggled with this – please appreciate my 11 Step instructions below (profanities are a free bonus…you’ll know what I mean).

11 Steps to Perfectly Undone Hair
Step 1: Wash hair at night, as you normally would.
Step 2: Towel dry hair, shake to release.  DO NOT BRUSH.
Step 3: Go to bed.
Step 4: Wake up in morning, tousle with fingers. (AGAIN) DO NOT BRUSH.
Step 5: Go about your daily business (we’ll refine your “undone” look later).
Step 6: In evening, run fingers through matted hair to ‘brush’ … (good luck)
Step 7: Plug in flat iron.  Heat to desired setting.
Step 8: Grab random chunks of hair in no particular pattern.  Run through flat iron in curling motion at fairly quick pace.
Step 9: Leave random strands that escape flat iron’s grip.  Leave random strands that refuse to curl like the others. Leave random globs of hair that have matted together.  They’ll be hidden.  JUST TWIST ONCE AND GO WITH IT.
Step 10: Shake the shit out of it.  Crop-dust with hairspray and scrunch.
Step 11: Leave house because you look fabulously “undone”.

Et, VOILA! Magnificent!

You’re welcome.

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Outfit Details
TopHM Coachella Collection (2016)
Fringe DusterStitches
JeansArdene (I KNOW)
ShoesWinners (#FabFind)
GlassesTahari (Winners – #FabFind)

Thirty Three

It’s been a while since I made a fashion post.  Oy.   Not being a full-time blogger, I get sidetracked – easily.  Well, really that’s just me in life, in general.  Shooting for this post I noticed something different though…

There wasn’t ONE photo that I had that I criticized.
I even found myself cheering myself on.

“YAS GURL, Look at you work it!  You look fabulous!  You’re amazing!”

This has not been the norm for any of my posts thus far.  This is a big step.

I’ve been going through a pretty significant change the last few months.  I feel like this is maybe something that happens when you’re on the cusp of the 30 year marker of life.  I’ve had glimpses of moments like these all throughout my twenties thus far, but nothing as concrete as now.

I’m evolving.

I’m more aware of myself, who I am and all that that entails.  I’m more connected to the world around me, in an organic way.  I’m becoming less dependent on technology, compared to how I was at the beginning of the year (which could also help to explain my absence).  I’m more appreciative of my body, of my essence.  I’m speaking more out of love than out of hatred or bitterness – to myself, and to others.   In a way, I feel like with the world around me moving forward, I am taking a few steps backwards… in the absolute best way possible.  I am finding my true self, and growing in ways that I was stunted from before.

A funny kind of thing is happening along with this.  My wardrobe is evolving, too.

I am choosing clothing that I am drawn to kinetically.  What my heart and soul are drawn to, instead of my eyes or my wallet.  In doing so, I am 1000% more comfortable in my own skin and in what I wear.  I think this is the first outfit that I’ve worn in a long time (or maybe ever) that I honestly love every part of, and how I look in every part of it.

Those legs – FOR DAYS.
Them thighs – #QUADGOALS.
Those curves – DELICIOUS.
Them arms – STRENGTH.
Dat booty – HI I HAVEN’T SEEN YOU IN SO LONG NICE TO HAVE YOU BACK.

All the pieces of me that I used to tear apart, I am falling so madly in love with.  I didn’t think that was possible, but the more I evolve, the stronger that love becomes – and I am so elated.  Loving myself has never been easy, but I am learning and I am finding happiness within the lesson.

I hope that if you’re reading this, and you’re feeling the way that I am so used to feeling, that you too will discover love and happiness within your own lesson.

Life is hard.  If we hold each other up, we can get through anything.

“All we need is love…”

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I am SO obsessed with bodysuits right now.  And this jacket…and these jeans…and boots…and sunglasses.
I would actually (and quite possibly just might) wear this every single day.  So, I can’t promise that I’ll have much new content coming in the near future.  #SorryNotSorry …

JacketGarage (on clearance!)
BodysuitH&M
JeansGap (1969 fit)
BootsDUNE London
SunniesWinners Fab Find

Thirty

Numero treinta!  OLÉ!

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I guess I’ve sort of started doing ‘concert/artist reviews’ with my Johnny Reid post, so here’s another!  Prepare for length; I have 3 artists to cover!

When I think of country music, I tend to think: home-grown, strong roots, authenticity.

I’ve been a country music fan my entire life.  Some of my favourite memories from my childhood are weekend mornings, waking up to the sound of country music blaring and my mom singing along (sometimes the vacuum cleaner added an extra essence to the melody).   I suppose you could say that country music runs through my veins.

Music – in general – is a very important part of my life and I love going to concerts, especially when they involve country artists.  I’ve met so many amazing people through country music (and developed some pretty awesome friendships), and yet, each time I meet someone new or experience a show for the first time – I’m always so surprised with how I feel.  I suppose maybe it has something to do with the way of the world these days, and how shocking it can be to still come across such wonderful, sincere people in it.

Last night was an amazing night (drunk stranger shenanigans aside).  You know, this year I’ve really pushed to make positivity my main mantra, and it’s been great!  But I’m not made of plastic and so there are still those bum days.  April is always a tough month for me, but this year in particular (in less than one week to be exact) will mark the 10 year anniversary of the loss of one of the most important people in my life.

The #CertifiedCountry tour could not have rolled through at a better time for me.  The line-up itself was like a golden triad: Gord Bamford, Joe Nichols, Beverley Mahood.  WHAT?!  I couldn’t miss it, and I’m SO glad I didn’t.

First to grace the stage was the lovely Beverley Mahood.   I’ve been a fan of Bev’s since I was an awkward 12 year old, belting out “I Want A Man” into my hairbrush  (Lace throwback, anyone?).  It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I had the absolute pleasure of meeting her.  Even though she hails from Ireland, when you think of a “Sweet Georgia Peach”, you think of Beverley.  She is sweet as pie.  She carries a genuine air about her; she has true authenticity to her character.  She’s the type of person that, when she speaks with you, makes you feel like the most important person in the room regardless of who you are.   One of the traits my grandfather passed on to me is being a good judge of character.  In plain English, when I meet good people – I know it.  Beverley is good people.  She’s also got incredible talent!  Check out her new single “New Religion“, which is SO good (and I’m so excited for her new album!!!)… or my all time favourite summer jam “Hope and Gasoline“. UGH. THAT MELODY.  Her music evokes emotion, and it’s brought me through a lot over the years of my life – especially the more recent years.  There are always those songs we hear that remind us of the good times and the bad/the happy and the sad…but there is one song in particular that helps to get me through those tougher than though days – “I Can’t Outrun You“.  I find it so comforting when I find a song I can relate to – right down to the core of it.  I often wonder if artists think about the lives they will touch when they write songs, or how meaningful their words will become to other people.

Next up was Joe Nichols.  It was like a mega flashback to my teen years.  His music was very popular in our household, so hearing it live really turned up the nostalgia.  I’ve never actually had the pleasure of seeing him in concert, but he’s so awesome!  He is such a down-to-earth performer, but at the same time is the guy that seems like a hella good time, you know?  Songs like “Brokenheartsville“, “The Impossible” and “She Only Smokes When She Drinks” were always in the background noise of my life.  Then of course, there’s the classics like “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Off” and “Yeah“.  If you’re unfamiliar with his other work, you KNOW you’ve heard these two hits.  I always find myself singing and bopping along to these when they’re on the radio.  I’m glad I finally got a chance to see Joe perform; listening to him sing brought back so many of the wonderful feelings and memories I had growing up.  It really was such a treat!  Thankful for moments like that 🙂

And last, but certainly not least, Gord Bamford.  Now, if I’m being completely honest here, I can’t say I was a huge fan previous to this show.  I mean, I’m familiar with his songs (I’m always singing along to them at work when they’re on the radio),  but I didn’t really take it much further than that until I purchased tickets to his show. Now?  Fan, through and through.  For me, sometimes it takes seeing an artist perform to really become a fan.  Something to do with matching personality to music, I suppose.  Gord Bamford is country.  When you think of a country song, you’re probably thinking of something he created.  You can really see his small town personality shine through everything he does.  I’ve heard a lot of great things about him within the ‘country music circle’ and I gotta say I’m more than impressed.  When I say that he is country, it’s because he has the values and the heart of gold to prove it.  There was a very touching moment when he invited his cousin onto the stage with him, and presented him with an autographed guitar for his birthday.  I’m pretty sure my eyes weren’t the only wet ones in the house.  Like a boss (and a true leader), he took up-and-coming artist Jesse Mast under his wing to mentor him and show him the ropes.  He speaks so lovingly about his family, and his pride for his children radiates out of his face like sunshine. He very sweetly took the time to sincerely thank us all for spending our hard earned money to see his show.  He also does so much for charity in support of youth across Canada and in our own backyard.  I can’t really think of a better role model to have out there for country music fans.  He embodies the entire package.   It truly is so inspiring that someone from a tiny place in Alberta can make such an impact! “When Your Lips Are So Close“, “Don’t Let Her Be Gone“, “Is It Friday Yet“, “Blame It On That Red Dress” – check these out.  Also, keep your ears peeled for “Breakfast Beer” and “Apples” – I’m sure these two are going to be big hits!

If you have a chance to check out these artists on the Certified Country tour, do it!  They all bring such a positive message with what they do, and that positivity is so infectious.  You’ll leave smiling and feeling like your faith in humanity is restored 🙂

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I loooooooove lace, and especially pairing it with anything ‘country’.

Lace, fringe, leather.  That’s my #CountryChic !

Top: Ricki’s
Trousers: H&M
Blazer: Dynamite Clothing (similar)
Shoes: Ardene (I KNOW, RIGHT?!)

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Twenty Nine

Friday night is always movie night for my boyfriend and I.
We LOVE the cinema, and so it’s one of our favourite things to do together.  It also conveniently satiates my obsession with popcorn, so it’s like 2 birds with 1 stone really.

My style generally leans towards the Tom Boy end of the spectrum, and this “Rocker Chic Pink Lady” outfit (Grease, anyone?) I threw together definitely follows that theme.

(Currently, I am enjoying my Sunday in a leopard print onesie.  I can’t determine which OOTD is better – Friday night’s look, or today’s.  It’s a tie, really.)

Jeans:  GUESS.  You can find a similar pair here (bonus, they’re on sale).
I guess the specific style I’m wearing is no longer available.  😦  GUESS Jeans are amazing for fit and comfort, and they also help to accentuate the booty – which is always a plus 😉

Tops:
Bodysuit with Lacing (H&M)
Flannel Shirt (H&M) – This specific one I recently picked up on Clearance.
Leather Jacket (H&M) has been in my closet a few years, and is presently my most loved outerwear piece.

Shoes:
Winners Fab Find!

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Happy Sunday, friends!

“A Sunday well spent brings a week of content.”

Twenty Eight

Photo 2016-03-29, 4 54 20 PM

I wore my WYL tee to Zumba tonight.  This was a personal big step.

It’s always been tricky for me to broach the subject of mental health (especially when it comes to my own), much less wear it on my chest like a neon sign.

I’m now pretty convinced that they should add “magic” to the list of what goes into these shirts.  I’ve never felt as confident in my class as I did tonight.

There’s something about wearing a shirt that says “It’s Okay Not To Be Okay”: implying that I’m human, that I live with Depression and/or Mood Disorders, that I am sad/down/confused/lost a lot of the time simply because of the way my brain is wired…

…and yet, here I am: singing, smiling, laughing, dancing, [sweating my arse off]

GENUINELY having the time of my life.

It’s a reminder, a humbling moment.

It’s not always grey skies and rain clouds.  There are times of sunshine and unicorns and lollipops.  And I’ve come to realize that I can be free, and I can be ME, by focusing on the things that coax the sun out from behind the clouds (like Zumba!)… and being okay with sometimes not being okay.  It’s not a crime, it shouldn’t be taboo – it’s all a part of being a living, breathing, growing soul.

Even though I saw curious eyes drift over to what I was wearing, nothing was said.  And that’s okay.  I wasn’t expecting any conversation to happen, but I know that unspoken words speak volumes; if by wearing this magical t-shirt to my class I encourage another woman to accept and love herself for her own rainy days … that would be something amazing in itself 🙂

I really need to get on ordering more of these wonderful pieces!

Twenty Seven

I will always love playing with neutral colours.
Navy and beige/tan/camel are pretty much a match made in heaven.
You really can’t go wrong.

I also really love the oversized collar on this jacket, and the extra panel along the back shoulder.

Top: H&M (similar here)
Jeans: H&M (similar here)
Jacket: Le Chateau (some time ago…)

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Peace & Love ❤

Twenty Six

When you live in Canada, and it’s “spring” (okay, almost) but you’re straight up sick of having to dress for winter weather.   Yeah, you know what I’m talking about.

SOLUTION:
Step 1 – Wear a dress, and bare legs (cause f**k snow, right?).
Step 2 – Throw on faux fur vest that, let’s be honest, is more like a giant rug with arm holes.

(FAB Winners Find! Still bloody awesome.)

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I was playing around with looks last night.  I recently got this ridiculously adorable dress (from Garage! Get it here) but I obviously bought it on a whim, and when I got it home I realized in horror that I had no idea how to style it.

That’s when I discovered that it goes exceptionally well with these amazing boots (courtesy of my S/O’s mama) and this ballin’ vest.  Boho spring/summer chic, anyone?

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One of the first things I thought of immediately after I threw it on (like I was a member of the Russian mafia) was a quote I’d seen online that goes like this:

“Walk in the club like what up I have social anxiety and I wanna go home.”

LITERALLY ME.

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THESE BOOTS THOUGH.  I am obsessed with them.  I received them in November, and had tucked them away for summer.  You can’t tell from a distance, but they are perforated and are technically “summer boots” so – not so Canadian-winter-friendly.

I caught a glimpse of the bright floral out of the corner of my eye, like the blinding of the sun when a cloud once covering it suddenly dissipates.  IT WAS LIKE CHRISTMAS ALL OVER AGAIN.

“OH YEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!”, I gleefully exclaimed.
“THESE ARE PERFECT!!!”

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Since this weekend marks the official beginning of spring, I am hoping with every atom in my body that the snow will disappear promptly, and I can whip this styling out in real time sooner than later.

Additional bonus: Floral is SUPER in right now (I’m looking at you Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana – you masters, you).  Rediscovering these boots couldn’t have come at a more perfect time! ❤

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Gold accents.
THREE HUNNED HASHTAG SWAGGA. 

Yeah, I went there.  Happy Friday! 🙂

 

 

Twenty Five

Any ladies out there with itty bitty legs like me?

Ever find yourself checkin’ them luscious gams in the mirror, but think: WHY CAN’T YOU JUST BE A COUPLE INCHES LONGER?!

Have no fear, I have a solution for you – one that doesn’t involve a wheelchair and extensive rehab for months (I’m looking at you, leg extension surgery).

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Pumps!

Look for a pair that has a pointed toe.  The narrowing lines of the point will elongate your beautiful legs, boosting your height (sort of) – and your confidence.

** Extra length if you buy the pumps in nude!

I’m always looking for ways to feel taller, because yes, I do have a complex about my height.  *insert blushing emoji here*

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I saw these babies at Winners (right?!), and I LOVED everything about them.  The colour obviously caught my eye first – hello, they’re cobalt blue – but the design was what really drew me to them.   I’m loving the lace-up style with the sexy little cut outs.

Side note: There is a “rule” about little legs and ankle straps.  That rule is to avoid them as they ‘cut off’ your leg at the ankle and therefore actually give the illusion of shorter legs.  Let’s just avoid that rule for now.  It doesn’t always apply. 

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I decided to play around with things since my usual go to is very black, or very white.

I feel like I’ve achieved “global” status with this look.  

Global…get it?

You know, green/blue/tan? Earth colou…….. nevermind.  I’ll just see myself out…

 

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I paired these blue suede beauties with my favourite jade pants (Urban Behavior), and this AH-MAZING faux fur coat (H&M).  Honestly, this jacket makes me feel so thug…but like, Beyonce thug.  Is that even categorically correct?

MY POINT IS, I feel so badass/Queen-like in this piece (also, very warm so very practical).

If you don’t already own a ridiculous(ly awesome) jacket like this, you should definitely invest in one.  You’ll cherish it and BONUS: if you’re socially awkward quiet like I am, it’s a GREAT conversation starter.  People will be asking if they can pet you, left – right – and – centre.

It’s not that creepy, I swear.

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If it does start to get overly weird, then you’ll look fabulous as you run the opposite direction.  I recommend practicing the running if you’ll be wearing your blue suede shoes.

This post got kind of weird.  Sorry.

(Not sorry)

For a 4 inch heel, these shoes are actually quite comfortable.  Especially for naps mid-shoot (see below).

Ladies, don’t be afraid of heel height.  It all depends on the style of the shoe.  If the shoe supports you in all the right areas, then the height of the heel won’t be so intimidating.

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Now that you know what to look for — Happy shopping! 🙂 ❤

 

Bonus Material

If you REALLY want to feel small and insignificant, take a journey into the mountains.  Every so often I need that escape, and I had the privilege this past weekend.

To remind me to stay humble, and to remind me that my troubles really are non-existent in the grander scheme.    The fresh mountain air also does wonders for a soul.  I swear, it’s truly magic at work…like some kinda Harry Potter sorcery.  Ya feel me?

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