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Live a Better Life

Yeah, yeah. We have all heard it. “Live your best life!” or “How to be a Better Person!” but have we truly looked within and TRIED? And I mean, TRY.

During this time, I started off very motivated and ready to hit my goals because of all the time I had suddenly obtained. However, I fell off and slipped into an unhealthy comfort zone. I stopped working out, I was on my phone and laptop 90% of the day, I wasn’t drinking enough water or feeding myself properly, and definitely wasn’t sleeping properly either. Sometimes I would stay in bed almost all day long, creating back pain and growing depression.

Sylvester McNutt via Pinterest

But, I started thinking to myself, “what the hell am I doing with my life?” and it just kind of clicked, after about 4-5 times of thinking that same thought. Finally, I decided it’s okay to lounge sometimes but I need to be productive and take care of myself. The best way to live a better life is to create your better self. The person you want to become, it might seem like a long way to go but it’s actually quicker than it seems.

After deciding to kick my butt into gear and start my daily exercising and yoga (newbie here!!), I decided that it was also time to nourish my body. I love making smoothies so I would try and make a smoothie after every workout to fuel my body and give it protein and energy. Exercise and diet is the most important part of all of this, but what fuels that is MINDSET. Boy oh boy, my pinterest brain was tingling when I decided to search up some quotes to motivate me. I created an entire board of motivational and inspirational quotes that revolve around becoming the best version of myself, self care & self love and the keys to success. It is all about the mindset, ladies and gentlemen.

This blog isn’t necessarily a step by step guide, but more of a tool to help fuel your motivation. My grandfather always reminded me, “If it’s gotta be, it’s up to me!” and I live by that.

What are some strategies you do to live a better life and become the best version of yourself?

If you’d like some inspo, follow my pinterest here – I have absolutely loaded it with valuable content! 💛

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10 Crucial Steps to Saving Money in Your 20’s

So, you’re 20 something years old and it’s really set in that it’s time to get your savings together. Saving money can be extremely hard for some, or most, but if you go about it the right way – you won’t even realize you’re putting money away!

  1. The first step to start saving is to develop a budget plan. I did mine in Excel because the spreadsheet makes it super easy and clean. But there are plenty of printables as well that look nicer, and you can print it out and hang it up in your room or on the fridge.
  2. Once your budget plan is complete, or near complete – you need to think about how much you’re going to set aside each month for savings depending on how much money is left over after expenses are taken out. A good start is to put around $100 a month away (or more if you can!) and also set up a “simply save” on your bank account. In my experience, TD Canada Trust has this feature and I’m sure other banks do as well. Essentially, every time you use your card – it will take a certain amount in a separate transaction and transfer it over. It can be as small as 50 cents, so you really don’t even notice you’re saving – but it adds up!
  3. The third step is to make money work for you. This can be done a few different ways such as investing into mutual funds, GICs etc. It is a good idea to talk to a financial advisor about these investments to ensure that you are getting the proper advice and care for your money.
  4. A bonus step would be to create another form of income other than your main source (your job), preferably passive income. Passive income is income that requires little to no effort to earn and maintain, which can come from rental properties (you own the property and rent it out to people), royalties such as writing your own book, partnerships etc.
  5. READ! Yes, that’s right. Read as many books as you can about money and financial advice/freedom. There are several books out there that have changed lives and they could potentially change yours as well! It is great to have knowledge, especially in your 20’s. Some good books to read that are also on Amazon are:
  • Broke Millennial by Erin Lowry – it is a great book for beginners who feel clueless about budgeting and getting out of debt. Also, this book is aimed at 20-30 year olds, which is different compared to some books that can be hard to read or interpret.
  • The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey – this book is incredible and features his famous “seven baby steps” to building wealth and getting rid of debt. A must read!
  • Set for Life: Dominate Life, Money and the American Dream by Scott Trench – this book is built on debt and making choices and sacrifices in life for the greater good. This book is recommended for “younger people who want to live life on their own terms as quickly as they can.”
  • Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki – this book will offer personal finance education to help you learn about cash flow, real estate, investing, how to start a business etc. It truly teaches you what kind of mindset you should have if you truly want to be rich/wealthy.

6. Something that has saved me more money than I thought it would is not buying coffee when I’m out, or even any fast food for that matter. Make coffee at home if you’re a coffee drinker – and grocery shop frugally. I found that downloading a price-matching app saved me even more money as well whenever I went out shopping!

7. Thrift shopping versus shopping fast fashion or “sales”. If you truly need new clothes, try thrifting. But, before you do – you should try and sell the clothes that you don’t need or don’t fit anymore. Consider selling them to the thrift store to get your new items for cheaper (but in my experience, I have made more money selling them by myself than giving them to the thrift store, it just takes a bit longer)

8. I have listed books above that are from amazon, but once the library becomes available again – use the library!!! I repeat. Use the library! FREE. BOOKS.

9. Pick up a second job or business. In my experience, I made relatively good money as a pizza delivery driver from tips. It was cash in my pocket at the end of every night, and you can save up and put it in a jar or the bank. A great second job to do on weekends or nights! You could even try delivering for Uber Eats or Skipthedishes if that interests you more, just do some research to see how much they pay etc.

10. Look at the things that you spend your money on. Do you get your nails done? Buy a bottle of nail polish and do your own nails at home – manicures are not essential. Do you get eyelash extensions? These can be pretty costly, it might be time to take a break for awhile. What about subscriptions? Take out any that are unnecessary that you can live without. I know that I used to have a FabFitFun box and an Ipsy bag, that I considered to be cheap subscriptions – but they add up and take away from your savings! If you truly want to save money and live a better life – you need to make sacrifices and act your wage. Buying things that you don’t need and that are too expensive to maintain can lead to even more debt and the wrong path towards success.

Overall, it’s a great idea to talk to a financial advisor. They will give you proper advice based on your situation and change it along the way. Happy saving! If you have any suggestions/questions, comment down below I’d love to see them!! Cheers to financial freedom.

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A Letter to my Mom

Dear mom,

I can’t thank you enough for the roof over my head, the food in my belly, the clean clothes, the toys, the hugs, the kisses and the laughter. You have given your all being my mom. Through every obstacle and challenge, you always seem to push through and you have shown me what determination means. You have shown me what strength is. I couldn’t name a more genuine, kind hearted, selfless and strong woman than you. I hope one day, when I have little ones, that I will be at least half of the mom you are to me.

Mom, I love that we have so much in common. I love playing games with you, watching our favourite tv shows and gossiping about the latest news. Even though I am grown, I am still your little girl and I will always be a mamas girl, especially with an amazing one like you.

From teaching me to walk to teaching me to drive, you have kept your patience (and obviously lost it sometimes too hehe) but you have always encouraged me to keep on trying. I keep your encouragement with me every single day.

When I have a hard day, or feel so anxious I can’t stand it. I know who I can call. I know that you will always be there, to comfort and to make me laugh. Through the breakups and the bullies, you have always tried your hardest to protect me. You never fail to remind me that I am beautiful and stronger than the words others say. You have always been the mama bear everyone wishes they had.

Mom, you are my best friend and I am so incredibly thankful for you. I love you with all my heart.

Happy mother’s day.

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10 Tips for Coping With Anxiety

Have you ever felt like your brain was becoming more and more tense by the second? Racing with thoughts, unable to concentrate on tasks, conversations, work… It’s a daily struggle for many people, including me. I have struggled with my anxiety for years, even before I knew what it was. I just thought it was completely normal, that everyone gets outbursts sometimes, everyone cries over minor things, everyone is unable to control their thoughts and worries…This happened to everyone and so I shouldn’t think anything of it. Wrong. It got too much, to a point where I couldn’t take it and I finally seeked help from my doctor. But, if you’re like me – medication doesn’t always do the trick and it can also take a very long time for it to even start working effectively. I have some key coping mechanisms that have helped me get through my days and also get through anxiety attacks that I feel coming on.

  1. The most important tip to remember is that your mind needs balance. How is your mind supposed to be balanced if the rest of your body isn’t? It’s time to start eating balanced and healthier meals. Eat regular meals and ensure you are taking in lots of water.
  2. Limit caffeine. I know this one is a total bummer especially for coffee lovers, and I still have a hard time with this too. But, instead of completely cutting it out – try to start with reducing your intake. If you drink 3 coffees per day, try 2. Caffeine is known to often aggravate anxiety and trigger anxiety/panic attacks.
  3. If you feel an anxiety attack coming on, take a seat, and breathe deeply and slowly. I follow a breathing rule inhaling deeply for 10 seconds and then slowly exhaling for 10 seconds then repeating if necessary. It usually takes me a few times before I start to truly calm myself.
  4. Change your focus. If you feel yourself getting irritable, uneasy, anxious etc. try to change your focus to something else. Watch a TV show, read a book, try exercising (which although can be hard to get yourself up and going, is very effective!!!)
  5. Painting or drawing (if you like to), can help ease the mind and enable your mind to focus on the act of painting, the colours, and how soothing it can be.
  6. Journal out your thoughts. Whenever I felt extremely overwhelmed, I would capture those thoughts and put them into poems – it’s actually where my best work came from. It’s a great way to relieve and unload your mind.
  7. Recognize the signs. Everyone is different which means the signs could be totally different. But, recognizing the signs before an anxiety attack can truly help you to be proactive by preventing an attack, calming down before it gets too much and noticing the signs way earlier.
  8. Stay in regular contact with friends and family, especially those who are close to you. Surround yourself with people you can open up to and talk with. Loneliness and isolation can be very hard on your mental health, especially anxiety and depression.
  9. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Therapy is becoming less and less stigmatized and is often talked about as being important even if you don’t have anxiety or depression. It can be helpful for everyday life, to enhance it and allow you to truly live your best, mentally. The truth is, you have to allow yourself to get the help you deserve and to talk about what is going on, even if it’s hard to explain.
  10. The last tip is one that I just learned recently, and it may sound silly but it works. When you are feeling anxious, grab an ice cube from your freezer and squeeze it in your hand. The coldness immediately takes your mind off of any anxious thoughts, because it is focused on the cold shock in your hands. If you don’t have ice cubes, try cold water!

It is important to take time for yourself. Your mental state is incredibly precious and self-care goes a long way. The trick is to check in with yourself every so often, ask yourself either in your head or aloud – how am I feeling? If you feel off, proceed to ask yourself what you need at the moment. Maybe it’s as simple as a tight hug or it could be more complex and having a reoccurring issue finally be solved – whatever it is, you are capable of controlling your own thoughts and feelings. We are so strong and life can throw some heavy stuff at us, but we rise up and keep on. Isn’t that amazing?

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IT IS OKAY TO FEEL UNEASY IN TIMES OF UNCERTAINTY

This whole pandemic has not only set off a whole realm of loneliness for a lot of people, but also a lot of anxiety and uncertainty. If you find yourself unsure of what to do with your life, unable to sleep or sleeping too much, feeling restless – IT IS OKAY. A lot of us have been go-go-go with our jobs, family, relationships, school, side hustles etc. It is totally okay to feel uneasy with how the world is right now. It is not easy for anyone. One of the good things about this isolation period is that the whole world is doing the same thing. Most of us are laid off, at home, unable to see relatives or friends, unable to do our usual routine. It is extremely probable that the pandemic has caused people increasing anxiety, and for people diagnosed with anxiety already – a pretty hard time. “People often don’t realize that their difficulties with focus, memory, sleep and relationships can all be related to anxiety,” says Amelia Aldao, clinical psychologist and founder of Together CBT in New York City. I am here to tell you IT IS OKAY.

So, let’s take a deep breath for a moment. This pandemic is probably going to last a bit longer than we all would like it to and what we need to do is come up with a new routine. Or, if you’re not into routine – just different things to do throughout the day to ensure that we don’t get tangled in all of that anxiety and stir-craziness.

  1. The first thing to do is to limit the amount of news you watch. I know it is a horrific time and that is all that is blasted everywhere, but limiting this is truly what will be best for your own sake and mental health. I am not telling you to completely block it out and act like nothing is wrong, but to limit the amount you watch/read.
  2. Continue with a SCHEDULE/ROUTINE. If you are someone who is normally structured and organized, don’t think of this time as a free-for-all. Keeping a steady schedule despite the circumstances will ensure that you are staying sane and busy.
  3. Which adds to my next point, KEEP BUSY. This can be done in an unlimited amount of ways. Take a bath, journal, draw, paint, garden, work-out, watch movies, get started on a new tv series, read a book or two or three!!!, call up a friend etc.
  4. Wake up and go to bed at your normal time. This one has honestly been one of the hardest ones for me. My sleeping schedule has been out of whack and that causes me so much stress because if I go to bed late, I typically wake up late and then I’m upset that I wasted ___ # of hours of the day. Wake up early still and go to bed at a reasonable time!
  5. If you work from home – try not to overload. With this stress and anxiety, it can become overwhelming and chances are your memory and work ethic is not what it was. Break up tasks, give yourself breaks, drink lots of water and feed yourself properly.
  6. Which goes again, feed yourself properly. I know that because the routine is off, sometimes we may forget to make breakfast or lunch, or maybe just hydrate properly. Try to truly make an effort to nourish your body and eat properly (bonus if it’s healthy!)
  7. Pick up a new skill/hobby. When is the last time you painted? What about gardening? Working out? Is there a task that you’ve been putting off such as painting the basement, redoing the deck? Take this time to do the things that you weren’t planning on doing before while you have the time.
  8. Check up on friends and family. Although you may not be able to go and visit, or maybe you can if you stay 6 feet apart (do not come for me if they change this rule!!!) A simple facetime call can help to stay connected while also checking up on your loved ones. We all need checking up on, especially if we are struggling through this. Take a few minutes and call that person (or multiple people), they will really enjoy your company.
  9. YouTube. I have been catching up on some of my favourite YouTubers lately and I am really enjoying it – especially because there are a lot of them who have decided to post daily vlogs, which gets me excited to watch and gives me something to do every day. Or, if you’re feeling creative – make your own YouTube channel and get recording!
  10. Get yourself ready. I have found that whenever I get out of bed, take a nice shower and do my hair/makeup – I feel way better. I feel like “hey, at least I did that today!”
  11. Take some online courses. Ever heard of Shaw Academy? They have a variety of online classes that you can take that range from marketing, social media and graphic design to beauty, music, finance, photography and more! They are doing a free trial and then if you’d like to continue afterwards it’s $69.99 CAD. It’s interactive, they have Q&A sessions, quizzes, assignments, and unlimited access to all of their courses – so if you wanted to take photography and finance, you can totally do that. Also, this is not an ad, I just really enjoyed their platform. Of course, there are many other platforms that do relatively the same stuff for online courses.

Stay safe, healthy & sane everyone.

Ps. Quick reminder to follow my blog to stay updated on new posts and also wash your hands 🙂

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Take Care of Yourself

I think that it’s in most peoples minds that the world feels like it’s closing down. When you walk down the street of once-busy downtown Toronto, you will find it feeling very eerie. The roads are near empty, the sidewalks too. Everyone is at home, self isolating themselves from this horrendous virus that has changed our lives globally.

At first, when I saw the news, sitting at home eating a big bowl of spaghetti surrounded by family, I thought to myself, “it won’t come here, though…” and I changed the channel. It is crazy how things change and how fast a virus can spread. My heart goes out to China and Italy, who have experienced the worst of it. This virus is no joke and nothing to change the channel about. I didn’t realize it could get this bad, to the point of closing shops, malls and banks. Taking a trip to the grocery store feels as if we are all gatherers, trying to find things that will keep our family healthy and able to live throughout this isolation, I mean, who knows how long it will be. The shelves are bare, toilet paper, soup, cold/flu medication, any form of sanitizer, it’s all out of stock. The people who need it most, the elderly can’t even get any of it – the grocery stores have had to restock and restock, opening up an hour early just for the elderly and disabled to come in a have a chance at getting some necessities. The world is in true panic.

Sitting at home, unable to visit my parents and sister in fear that they will somehow get the virus or if they have the virus – give it to me. I have no idea if I am a carrier of this virus, I show no symptoms – but there have been many positive cases with the same thing. The fear has truly set in for me, but I have been trying to really take the time I have to practice self-care and truly take care of myself during this time. I know that in times of panic, fear and isolation it can often result in problems with mental health including depression and I want to make sure that I am giving myself the proper care to avoid that. I’ve been trying to make sure I don’t start eating a bunch of junk just because I am home all day, which can be very tempting because of boredom. I also have gotten into some at-home workouts which fills some time and makes me feel really good. But, my go-to activity is YouTube and Netflix. My favourite youtubers Julie & Hunter Havens have been putting out daily vlogs and it’s really neat to see how they are being productive and going about their day throughout this whole fiasco.

I hope that everyone is staying indoors, safe, healthy and mentally well. I know this is going to be a bit hard for some people to self-isolate and being home majority of the time, but this can also be a great time to pick up a new hobby or skill. I’ve been trying to read more and I see some people are picking up painting, drawing etc. Which is also a really great idea. All in all, find what works for you and makes you happy. Try not to sleep too much and try to be productive through these next few weeks.

Well wishes xo

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Women are Changing the World

Women are changing the world. When it comes to boss ass women, there are definitely a ton. But some names that have made it globally are:

MEGAN MARKLE. Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Megan Markle – who was the most Googled person of 2018. She has inspired girls everywhere to see themselves as beautiful princesses and it doesn’t stop there as she advocates for education, support for women and animal welfare.

MALALA YOUSAFZAI. Richard Stonehouse/Getty Images

Malala Yousafzai – who is a woman who survived a tragic terrorist attack. She has written three books and her words are being carried around the world as inspiring – her ability to forgive her attackers as the best revenge she could give. A lesson to keep in mind. You can watch her on David Letterman’s Netflix Show called “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction”.

MICHELLE OBAMA. Remko De Waal/Getty Images

Michelle Obama – Her memoir “Becoming” has been a huge hit, filled with inspiring quotes as well as revealing her vulnerable and true self. She inspires women to share their voice and BECOME who they want to become. She revealed struggles in her life such as IVF and going through a miscarriage, which is still very taboo to some.

But, what about in tech? There are so many male names that we know around the world. To name a few, have you ever heard of Elon Musk? Steve Jobs? Bill Gates? Mark Zuckerberg? There are so many leaders around the world in tech. But, what is odd is that most of you can’t even name three top leaders in tech that are women. That’s because there really isn’t a ton, that profession has been swept of women and is male-dominated. If you haven’t realized yet – tech is absolutely HUGE and it is just getting started. Our world revolves around technology and new devices, new smartphones, new inventions. According to the Women and Technology Study conducted for PwC in 2017, “only 3% of women say a career in technology is their first choice, 78% of students can’t name a famous women working in technology, and only 5% of jobs  in the technology industry are held by women.”

However, times are changing fortunately. Stephanie Lampkin, CEO & Founder of Blendoor had a vision to create a matching app to reduce the bias when it comes to recruiting in the tech field. By doing this, she wants to prove that this will essentially add more value to companies by providing them with the best tech people regardless of gender, looks etc.

I think that Stephanie has such a great idea and vision. We need more women in tech. We need more role models and mentors to introduce this field to younger women who may not even know this could be an amazing career choice. Working for a tech company comes with an unbelievable amount of benefits. The tech world is crazy, and growing every day, there are so many new inventions being created. Think about driverless cars, brain computer interface, mobile apps, there are so many sectors that are available to work in and they are always hiring. Which is again, a huge reason why women should get on board.

Now, we do have women in tech that are in the sector of social media managing, marketing, advertising, digital media etc. Those women are super bad-ass and are taking over social media by storm. Most of my favourite youtubers, bloggers and instagrammers are female and they are SO inspiring. My favourite podcast to listen to is Girls Gotta Eat Podcast, which features two lovely women who are all about empowering women, teaching them, relating to them and overall inspiring them to be better and that we can achieve our goals. They are absolutely hilarious and are by no means disregarding men, either. They feature a lot of men on the show and really love to dig into their insight. Feminism is NOT disregarding men or believing that men are below women. We are just fighting for equality, to be known. To be heard. And all of that – properly and seriously.

Cheers ladies, let’s change the world.

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Be a Lady

Be a lady, they said. Women are set to standards that aren’t reachable. We are taught from such a young age to watch what we wear, what we say, what we do. We are taught gender norms such that we must be in specific professions to obtain success, and even if those weren’t shoved down our throats – the norm forced it anyways. As women, we need to be very particular and careful about everything from clothes, to hair, to lips, to coverage etc. Making careful considerations about what kind of outfit to wear, because we want to look sexy but not slutty, cute but not prudish. The money that we spend is not for men, but in actuality to impress or just in fact survive in the female world. It is only getting worse, we have learned that if we do not like who we are then we can change ourselves. We can get filler, we can use machines to tone our bodies, spray tans to change our complexion, lashes, hair, implants – you name it. And it is not the men’s fault for this outrageous phenomenon. It is ours. We are the ones that are judging, creating these norms.

An undeniably powerful video called “Be a Lady, They Said” was created by an account on instagram (@girls.girls.girls.magazine) that starred Cynthia Nixon who is an American actress best known for her role in Sex and the City. “Don’t be too fat, don’t be too thin. Eat up, slim down. Stop eating so much. Order a salad, don’t eat carbs. God, you look like a skeleton!” Nixon says in the video, which hit home for many. But another thing that was talked about was the fact that we must hide ourselves from the men, in fear that they will hurt us. The world we live in has become so scary and the fact that we are teaching our daughters to protect themselves and to dress as conservative as possible to prevent harm – of course the argument has been going both ways for years. The empowering video has been shared by thousands of users on the site. As the day went on, top celebrities such as Madonna and Cara Delevingne began to share and talk about it which attracted more and more views. It is such a wholesome action to share something so powerful across a platform in which you can truly make a difference.

To watch the video on Instagram, click this link. I am not affiliated with the account or Instagram.

Society norms are that women are set to such a standard that is simply unachievable. Whatever you do, you will be judged for it – so do whatever the hell you want. Don’t apologize for being yourself.

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A Letter To Me

Dear me,

I am sorry for putting you through stress and anxiety. I am sorry for the shaking and the tears. I did not know that you were strong enough. I didn’t have faith that you could do better than this. I trained your brain to believe this was love, to hold onto it so tightly your knuckles ached. Nobody else could love you. I let you become so small, fragile and weak. Unsure of your own opinions and own thoughts, constantly over thinking your own values and who you were until you became so lost. I allowed you to be brainwashed with “I’m sorry” and “You make me act like this” and “I love you”. I allowed the cruel words to be spit at you, I allowed you to break. But that’s what I had to do, these things are what helped you grow. You grew and became strong, you realized your worth and you left, because you ARE worthy of love and kindness. I am sorry that it took you so long to come to terms with it, but you found it on your own. The tears are dry now, you are okay. I will never allow a man to step on you again, to spit at you, to yell and scream. You are not small.

I have learned to love you, even on bad days. The mirror is your friend, you are wonderful and happy and full of life now. Keep it. Hold onto this. This is love, self-love.

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For the love of Valentines…

Now, I am writing this as a happily taken girl, so there will be a *little* bit of bias here and there.

To start the conversation, why is Valentines a holiday? Well, this day is known for its romance and celebrating a couples love through gifts, dates, flowers etc. to name a few. But in reality, Valentine’s day and where it came from is actually quite morbid. It’s history revolves around Christianity and Lupercalia which is an ancient Roman fertility festival (what?!) that is held from February 13th to the 15th which is said to be the reason why Valentine’s day is the 14th. What happened was that each teenage boy would draw a name of a girl to be paired with for that year and the women were obligated to be with that boy under the Roman law. These relationships often led to marriage. Other stories are much more disturbing and the Romans would sacrifice a dog and a goat for purification and fertility. Then, the women were said to have been slapped with goat hide as it was believed to make them more fertile (hence the Lupercalia) thus leading into the name drawing and marriage.

Aren’t we glad to be living in the grand year of 2020 where women (in most countries) are now free to make their choices of whom to marry and when?!

Personally, Valentine’s day is seen as a joke to many but I still love the day and commercialization that society has put into it. I am a sucker for a sappy card and flowers…dinner date nights??? Count me in.

Sincerely,

Your Valentine 💘

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Midterm Blues

The dreaded midterm blues are here for all you college and university students. This time around, you’re going to kill it. Don’t let these midterms take over your sanity.

First things first – be prepared. Personally, I have learned from my mistakes (and I have continued to make these same mistakes semester after semester until I finally said enough!) and I have tried my best to simply PREPARE. Now, this can be done pretty easily if you attend every class and take great notes. But, if you’ve missed a class or two – make sure to ask a friend (well in advance of the midterm!!!!) if you could copy their notes. Without notes, it is super hard for most people to be prepared for midterm exams, it is extremely hard to sit down and go through an entire textbook because almost half of it is full of jargon that will most likely not be on the actual exam.

Second, studying even when you don’t feel like it. Trust me – I know it is easier said than done. But, this step is crucial for the above step to work. It certainly does not have to be long either, break it up so that it doesn’t seem as taunting. For example, study a little bit every day after class to ensure that all of the information that you’ve just learned actually resonates with you. Take your notes home, and sit down for 20 minutes then grab a snack and get on with the rest of your day.

Third step/tip is to know when to seek extra help. At the start of the semester, it may be beneficial to get extra help after class right away to get you on the right track. Typically, the school you are going to may have extra resources that you can go to during certain times where they touch on certain subjects to help students that might be struggling. But, another way you can do this is to form yourself a little study group. With the people sitting around you, ask if any of them would like to form a study group to prepare for the upcoming exam – or reach out via a facebook group (if your school has one).

Fourth and my most useful tip is to re-write. I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my note taking, however, these notes do not mean I am an amazing student. But, it means that I genuinely take my time to ensure that the knowledge gets stuck inside my head while also ensuring that my notes look neat and tidy. Whenever I try to write out my notes in class, I tend to write them very quickly and usually messy so I like to go in after and re-write them adding key points, highlighting, starring important phrases etc. This also works a ton if you use your laptop for note-taking, when you are done typing – write it out! It is known that re-writing something actually ensures that you are really reading it rather than mindlessly typing it.

Remember, we are all different learners and all have different ways to study so this list is kind of a universal study tip list. If you need extra help – remember that it is not embarrassing, and it is actually crucial for you to get that extra help in order to pass or get a better mark. Your success and learning is what matters most!

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Holiday Gift Ideas for the Boyfriend

‘Tis the season for gift giving and gathering around the Christmas tree. It is a wonderful time of year. Now, I know if you’re like me – I care way too much about what gifts to buy and also trying to save a few pennies whilst doing it. It is quite the difficult task, especially if you just end up going to the shopping centre without a plan in mind. Here’s a few gift ideas for that special guy in your life, you can mix and match them to suit your man!

Let’s Talk About DIY Gifts…

So, it is totally up to you what kind of gift to get your partner. But, personally I like to be a *sappy* girlfriend and go for the DIY presents, or at least DIY ideas per say. To pull on those heart strings, think back to what you and your partner do together. Do you two play cards together? Do you love board games? Scrabble? What about physical activities like skating? When thinking of what to get them, try to focus on something you both love or have in common to do your DIY gift. A few examples could include:

52 Reasons Why I Love You
Disclaimer: This is my photo and I created these cards
The Five Senses
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it
A Picture Frame with Written Words
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.

Gifts Based on Interest

Then, try to think of what he likes. Is he a sports guy? Does he love finance? Maybe he’s a movie fanatic or video gamer? Here’s a few examples of some gifts based on interests:

A Duffle Bag Full of Sports/Gym Related Items
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.
Engraved Pocket Knife
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.
Nike Lover (and other gifts)
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.
Men’s Giftbox
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.
Hockey Puck Love
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.
Engraved Watch
Disclaimer: This is not my photo, I have linked the photo to where I found it.

Overall, you can mix and match these for Christmas, Anniversary, Valentines etc. The point is to know your guy and think outside of the box. I hope these ideas helped!

Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas 🎄

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Tesla Cyber-Truck

Tesla had one of their many live-streams where they unveiled yet another futuristic vehicle. This time, Elon Musk unveiled their “Cyber Truck”. This truck has been speculated over the past few months, hundreds of different pictures of what people thought the truck would look like. But, once the livestream revealed the truck – nothing compared. This vehicle looks like a futuristic army vehicle – being stainless steel, bullet proof, scratch proof, dent proof etc. This truck is a total MONSTER. With the base model only being a mere $39k, Tesla’s competitors don’t stand a chance. The speed tests were unbelievable, as Elon showed statistics where the 0-60mph was hit in just 2.9 seconds. Fully self-driving. This truck can TOW over 14 THOUSAND pounds with air suspension that adjusts on the fly with what you have in the cargo, and the tug of war test proves just that as the Ford F-150 stood no chance to the Cyber Truck as it got dragged with ease up-hill. But, what disappointed many viewers including Elon was the shocking mistake of a broken window. The team tested the armoured glass window itself first, dropping steel balls from tall heights…The glass didn’t break, scratch or leave a mark. But, when Elon’s demonstrator tested it out on the actual vehicle on stage…Well, the windows smashed. Elon’s vibe totally plummeted as he told the audience that he didn’t know why it didn’t hold up there. It’s a shame that the test failed, but Elon kept presenting and the audience remained intrigued. At the end of the livestream, Elon dropped another surprise unveil which turned out to be an ATV that loaded into the truck and charged itself in the back. What a livestream. Another job well done, Tesla.

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to the one who is always there

You are so so appreciated and loved. I may not express it enough in words, but I see you.

When I struggle to climb out of bed or go to work or go to the gym or even just take my vitamins – you are there to help me. You lift me up, you pull me out of bed with love and kisses, you inspire me to be better and to work hard. When my days are roughs and my brain plays tricks on me, you are there to comfort. To hold. Thank you for being so genuine, thoughtful, kind and gentle with me.

To the one who carries my groceries, who helps me do laundry, who takes turns washing dishes. You make everyday tasks so much easier. You are a help. These things that may seem little to you do not go unnoticed.

To the one who buys me coffee when I’m behind you in the drive thru, thank you for setting my heart on fire with only a dollar. You excite me and surprise me in the weirdest ways.

To the one who sings with me in the car, belting out the words to Shallow and rapping along to Childish Gambino and Hopsin, I have so much fun with you. Our crazy (and totally extra) dance moves are what make my smile go all the way up to my ears. The little kisses on my hands as you drive with your other one. I love being myself with you. I love being happy.

I thank you for bringing me so much joy and fun and laughter. You are always there, in the low times and the high. I appreciate you & the small things you do, they never go unnoticed.

So thank you, for being there.

The IUD

It came up when I was talking with some friends and the different types of birth control. I had seen others have used it and there were so many pros and cons, and horror stories. But, there were also success stories. I had researched it for months and then finally decided to talk to my doctor on my next visit. I told him that I was debating either an IUD or the Depo Shot…He advised me to see a gyno and booked me an appointment. It took about a month or two to get an actual appointment, but then it all happened very quickly. I went in for my consultation and asked about side effects, which of course there were including cramping – but for me, I have always had terrible cramping during my periods and if this even lightened it a little bit I would be happy. Also, she told me that the Kyleena is her favourite form of birth control and she recommends it to everyone. The main reason was convenience for most but also the fact that it worked at a rate of over 99% effectively. That means less than 1 out of 100 people who have an IUD will get pregnant each year. There also was a possibility of lighter periods, and eventually not having a period. I was locked in.

Retrieved from BAYER

So, I went home that day and sat down at my laptop thinking…It’s going to hurt. I’ve heard horror stories of girls having surgery to remove it because it was excruciating pain. I typed every single thing I could think of into the search bar. Do IUDs hurt? On a scale of 1-10 what is the pain level of an IUD? What is the chance of an IUD going wrong? Let me tell you…Google is not always your friend. My stomach dropped and I felt very faint, I don’t know if this is right for me. I got scared. But I didn’t cancel the appointment, this was a one and done kind of deal. It lasts for 5 years, and the insertion will probably hurt but it’s just once. I kept trying to reassure myself. I went and picked up the prescription from my local Shoppers Drug Mart and it came in a HUGE box. I didn’t open it. It was really expensive too, luckily I had a bit of coverage from being in school. Eventually the big day came around. My boyfriend drove me to the gyno and sat outside of the office and waited for me. One of the doctors came in to calm me down, as she could tell I was tense and proceeded to tell me that it is going to hurt a lot, to be prepared for it and when it’s over not to sit up right away because I will most likely faint. Was that really her way of calming a patient down? I thought it was ridiculous and I wish she never came in. I took a deep breath and laid on table, they had a picture taped to the ceiling of some clouds and I tried to focus on that until my gyno came in. She finally did after a few minutes (felt like a lot longer) and she smiled and said “ready to go?” and honestly, she was genuinely calm and collected and that soothed me a LOT more than the other lady. She told me it’s not a big deal, it won’t hurt a lot and she’s done this many times before. It will just feel like a bit of cramping, no worries. When it finally came down to it, it didn’t hurt a ton. My pain tolerance isn’t very high and she was right – it felt like cramping because my body is trying to understand where this foreign object came from. It was nothing like what Google said. Nothing like what the previous doctor said. Nothing like the horror stories. I brought my boyfriend because I felt that after the appointment I wouldn’t be able to drive myself home, but I was perfectly fine! I strolled out of the office and thanked my gyno. I ran out to meet my boyfriend and he asked me how I felt, and it was no big deal. I am protected for 5 years (or whenever I would like to have it removed if I want it before that). My advice to any girls going to get theirs is to not let your mind trick you and scare you, because the truth is you really have to relax your muscles and if you tense up that is what will hurt you. Just relax and breathe. Like always, I would like to put a disclaimer that you should ALWAYS talk to your doctor first to see if this is right for you. All experiences are different and I just wanted to put my personal experience out there!

Thanks loves x