Anxiety is a Bitch and I’m Gonna Fight Her

All of my life I have struggled with anxiety. I have felt instant panic when asked to make a decision, I have called friends with made up excuses as to why I couldn’t go to their birthday party, and I have avoided doing what my heart really desires for fear of what could go wrong.

I know I am not alone in this. There are so many of you out there who battle with this on a daily basis just like me. I want you to know that you are also not alone.

Amongst anxiety I have been dealing with multiple other health issues. Most of these have surfaced throughout the past 5-7 years. Issues such as migraines, I have dealt with since I was about 12 but I only recently discovered that the cause was not chocolate, or perfume, but anxiety itself. Other health concerns have been Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), dizziness, nausea, constant hunger, overactive bladder, numbness and tingling as well as your typical fatigue. I became that girl who was constantly at the doctor for something new. I never felt like my doctor took me seriously or believed me, but I knew something wasn’t right. After about 3-4 years of persistence, he finally referred me to a gastroenterologist. There was actually an answer to my problem: IBS. I was relieved to know I wasn’t crazy, and there was actually something going on. Once I did more research on it though, I soon came to realize that chances were good that this issue sprung itself into existence because of my debilitating anxiety.

Whilst dealing with the new lifestyle I had to incorporate in order to get my body working in order, I noticed other abnormal feelings. I felt dizzy, shaky, and sometimes tingly or numb most mornings, usually before work. I played it off as hunger, or fatigue, or hell even just the need for coffee. This went on for months until I discussed it with my doctor. When I brought it to his attention however, nothing came out of it. I had tests done, blood taken, and nothing came back. I left it alone and tried to ignore the symptoms.

Consider this: I deal with so many types of anxiety. Health anxiety makes me constantly believe there is something wrong with me. Social anxiety makes me fear people and social situations therefore making it hard for me to speak up when something is wrong. Hence why it’s taken me so long to get all of these things dealt with. I am scared of being judged, being viewed as a hypochondriac, ACTUALLY BEING a hypochondriac…. I digress.

This story has gotten quite long, and although I do want to share it, it’s not my intention to give you my entire anxiety story in this post. I just wanted to preface what I am about to say with a bit of background to it.

After feeling all of these issues, and symptoms and genuinely believing there was something wrong with me… I started doing my own research. I discovered that yes, these things are happening to me. I am not crazy, I am not making them up. The real kicker is that it’s all anxiety induced. Seriously.

The day I found out that the reason I am always hungry, even after just eating isn’t because I am a pig, or that’s “just the way I am” as I always used to tell people… it’s because I have trained myself to find comfort in food. So whenever I feel anxious my body makes me feel hungry and therefore I eat to fill that void.

Now what I am about to tell you, is the core reason I have written this post. We can fight back. After learning that I’m not truly hungry all the time but am just feeling anxious, I have made a conscious effort to keep this in mind every time I feel hunger creeping up on me. DISCLAIMER: Of course this is only to a certain extent. DO NOT SKIP MEALS. DO NOT STARVE YOURSELF OR DEPRIVE YOURSELF OF FOOD. What would happen to me is that I would eat breakfast before work and by the time I got to work I’d be starving. I’d find myself wondering HOW?! Well, being at work makes me anxious. So now I am conscious of that fact and when I feel that hunger I talk myself down. “Sara you just ate, you are not hungry, you are just anxious. Breathe”.

Do you know what? It actually works!! I have somehow managed to conquer one tiny hump in this anxiety battle I’ve been fighting for my whole life. I never knew that was possible. I obviously still struggle, but knowing that I actually can bring my brain back to the real world even over something small, is a huge accomplishment.

Imagine what more can be done?!

If you are dealing with any of the same things, try reminding your brain that it’s just anxiety and see if that helps in even the smallest way. Although it won’t cure your anxiety, it may have a positive effect on the symptoms it causes you. I hope it helps you the same way it has helped me.

Anxiety is a bitch, and I’m going to fight her. I hope you do too!

xo Sara

What is Skin Picking, and How Do I Stop?

Skin picking is a compulsive tendency to pick at any acne, bumps, or imperfections on the skin. It is mostly targeted towards the face, but it also transpires onto the arms, and rest of the body as well. Fingers are the most common tool of choice, but many people also resort to using tweezers, safety pins or whatever object will work. This compulsion is directly related to anxiety and stress and is also known as Dermatillomania. While it seems a simple solution for this habit would be to stop touching your face, it is definitely not that easy.

I have struggled with face picking since I was about 13 years old. I never understood it as a problem until I was much older however. I thought it was normal for a teenager to mess with the bumps and acne on their face. Apparently not in the same way I was doing it. Basically I just never stopped and now it’s an unconscious compulsion that I find myself taking part in even when I am telling myself to stop. I will literally sit on my couch, hands clawing my face and in my head be saying, “stop, stop, STOP!” but my body resists. I am not satisfied until I have rid my face of every bump and consequently it can leave quite the red, raw, and sometimes bloody mess. Not to mention, it hurts! It stings like crazy when you wash your face afterwards.

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These are some of my go-to products for helping my skin.

Due to the fact that I have struggled with this for so long, and have actively been trying to quit, I wanted to write out a list of some tips that can help you stop if you are also struggling with this. Let me preface this first by saying I am still continuously working on quitting and still struggle daily. I am not a doctor and I know that it isn’t an easy task to stop but these are tips that have worked for me.

If you try out or find any of these tips helpful, or have any advice for me, please leave me a comment below! Now without further ado, let’s get into my How to Stop Skin Picking Tips:

  1. Get fake nails – having fake nails was a hack I stumbled upon by accident. I don’t get them very often because they are quite pricey and can also wreak havoc on your nails but if you have the funds and are committed to saving your face, this may help you. The tips of artificial nails are a lot softer than our actual nails and therefore make it harder to get a good grip on the bumps you’re trying to pick, and because they aren’t as sharp they don’t cause as much damage.
  2. Exfoliate often – When you exfoliate your skin a couple of times a week it removes all of the dry skin (duh!) but if you have any remaining scabs from old pimples, or previous picking sessions using the exfoliator to remove the dead skin from those spots will be much better than using your fingers. Once you’ve removed the dead skin, there will less likely be any “lifts” in your skin to pull at.
  3. See a dermatologist – if what you’re picking at is acne, I highly recommend seeing a dermatologist. I never thought my skin was bad enough acne-wise to go to a dermatologist, but after years of cystic acne I decided enough was enough and spoke to my doctor about it. He put me on some basic topical creams and set me up with a dermatologist and I just had an appointment with her last week. I am going to write a post about my acne journey another time though so I’ll keep this part short. All in all, a dermatologist is going to see the damage that picking has caused your skin and if there is a way to stop the acne from happening there will be less for you to pick at. They don’t WANT you to scar your skin. I highly recommend it!
  4. Find out what type of skin you have – I am still working on this one myself, as I went through the majority of my life believing I had dry skin, but am now learning I may have combo skin. Regardless, learning what type of skin you have is super important because it will help you better take care of it. Using the right products for your skin type will really benefit your skin, and the better your skin looks –you guessed it!—the less there is to pick at!
  5. Keep your hands busy – a huge thing for me is finding something to do with your hands! Things like reading a book (hold it with both hands!), painting, drawing, colouring in a colouring book, get a Rubik’s cube, or a stress ball even. Unfortunately my idea of keeping my hands busy is to eat something, or play on my phone. They work, but aren’t the healthiest of options!dsc_0537-2
  6. Reward yourself – when you have a day, or week, or even an hour if that’s a milestone for you, that you have gone without picking, make sure to reward yourself! A reward can be anything. Whatever it is that will motivate you not to pick. Run yourself a bath, order your favourite drink from Starbucks, buy a cute mug or notebook etc. Let yourself know that you are doing a good job and this is the behaviour you want to instill within yourself!
  7. Talk to your doctor – skin picking is an anxiety induced compulsion. It also can be related to a plethora of other mental health disorders and it will benefit you a lot to speak to your doctor about it. It can feel embarrassing, but just know you are not the only one who struggles with it and doctors see this type of thing all the time. They may prescribe anti-anxiety medications that will help you with more than just face-picking.
  8. Breathe – Everyone gets zits and pimples and spots, and so many of us struggle with picking at them. It’s a shitty feeling especially once you’ve destroyed your face and are left to face the world afterwards, but you are not alone. It is okay, and you will get through it. Just like you did the last time, and the time before that. Every day is a new start. Try to be nicer to yourself and don’t beat yourself up about it. I used to think I was the only one who picked at their face and now I know I am not. We can control it, until we can’t. And that’s okay too. Any second spent resisting, is progress made.

Quick Tip for Relapses:

Take care of your skin once it’s been wounded. Wash and cleanse your face, apply polysporin or some sort of antibacterial ointment, and make sure you moisturize well. If you are going to be handling your face, make sure to wash your hands to avoid infection.

Finding Inspiration in Others

If you’re anything like me, you probably spend a lot of time gushing over others’ blog posts, Instagram layouts, YouTube video quality, outfits, home décor and whatever else there is to admire. I always find myself feeling negative about it because I don’t believe I could ever achieve a look quite like that, and it really bums me out. I always felt awkward and I didn’t want to try and recreate what the other person had done because I didn’t want to just ‘copy’ them.

I’m here to tell you that it’s a load of crap. Obviously don’t copy someone’s work down to a tee (of course if you copy anything make sure to give credit!!), but it’s completely okay to take inspiration from them! How do you think they got to where they are now? We are human, and we make the world go round by learning from each other and gaining inspiration from each other. Do you like the way someone edits their photos? Ask them how they do it, and try it out. Guaranteed even if you used the exact formula for editing, they wouldn’t look the same. Your physical photography will be different than theirs which in turn will make the photo different regardless of the editing. Not to mention, we all have our own unique taste so chances are you would change a couple of steps in the process anyways.

When I see a photo of an outfit that I like, I try to recreate it with the clothes I have or ones I can access easily (in my budget). I’m not going to go out and buy every single item of clothing that they are wearing and pose for a photo in the same way they did at the same location.

If you’re still trying to figure out what you like in fashion, or home décor or even in photography, there is nothing wrong with learning from those you admire. I have discovered how I like to edit my pictures after being inspired by Kalyn Nicholson’s Instagram. Her photos are dark but in such a pleasing and classic way. Before seeing her stuff, I was under the impression that pictures had to be bright and light and colourful. Now I understand that there is no “one way” for them to look. I am drawn to the darker styles and so now I edit them to be cooler toned and faded which I am loving! My style may change but for right now that is what I am digging!

I have discovered that I prefer cooler tones when it comes to home décor as well, after following Jillian Harris, Meghan Rienks and of course Kalyn Nicholson (yet again). Growing up my mom always geared towards browns, beiges, and greens to get the style she wanted. I followed suit for years and am now realizing that I prefer whites, grays and neutrals with a pop of colour here and there. I have yet to redecorate my home in the way that I want to due to budget but I am slowly making plans in my head; and you can bet when I do redecorate I will be taking inspiration from the people I mentioned above.

In the past I would see something I liked and instantly push away the thought because I wanted to have my own unique style… little did I know that that WAS my unique style. I like certain looks and colours more than others because that is just simply what I like. Now, I have the knowledge of what I like and can implement it into my life while making it my own.

What is something you have been inspired by lately? Or who? Leave a comment and let me know!

xo Sara

Learning to Own Your Insecurities

As you can tell by the title of this post, we are going to be discussing insecurities, and of those I have many. As we all do. As a child we begin blissfully unaware of the world of insecurities. We aren’t comparing ourselves to others looks and we think all of our parents are the most beautiful people in the world. The innocence of it is amazing and I wish we could all stay that way. However, then one day we hear our mothers talking to their friends about being fat and needing to go on a diet; and then a kid at school points out the size of your nose (at least in my case) and we go on to notice more and more things about ourselves that may not be completely perfect.

Fast forward to our teenage and adult years and we have lists upon lists of things that we don’t like about ourselves. Things that we try to hide from others; we use makeup to cover spots and to contour our faces into looking thinner and more defined. We only take photos at certain angles because we want to avoid the double chin, or the tummy pooch and we edit them with smoothing filters to make our skin look flawless. In the media every single day we hear more about models being photo shopped and how they portray an unachievable goal yet we still feel pressured to look just like them. I for one definitely use the above techniques to make my photos look better, I suck in my stomach and push out my bum when I pose. I take at least 20 photos before I get even ONE that I like and am happy with. Of course then I edit it and filter it so that it’s even more “perfect”.

There is however one thing I won’t do, and that’s to photo shop a body part. The reason being that I want people to see me and know me for me. It’s safe to say that everyone has little tricks to make themselves look better in pictures, and although we shouldn’t feel like we have to use them, for right now it’s what we do. I will still edit my pictures in ways that make me feel more comfortable, but I won’t put out something that isn’t truly me.

When my friend and I went out to take snow photos this week, she took a side profile photo of me. When I saw it I was horrified because I am extremely insecure about my nose. I thought it looked absolutely disgusting, and we joked around about how she should photo shop it to make it cuter. I didn’t think much of it until I got the photos back from her and she had actually photo shopped my nose, for fun. I wasn’t upset that she did it, I was more upset that I liked how it looked and I wished my nose really looked that way. Except I knew for a fact I could never post that photo. Anyone who knows me in real life, would know the picture was photo shopped and anyone who doesn’t know me deserves to know me as the person I really am. All of the filters and lighting changes are a pretty obvious edit, but when it comes to the actual shape of my nose, that’s pretty hard to fake in real life. It’s important to me that I own who I am and what I look like; I refuse to pretend to be any other way.

I ended up asking my friend for the photos without my nose photo shopped and she gave them to me. To my surprise I actually didn’t hate it as much as I thought I would. When I feel insecure about something, I automatically assume that everyone else is staring at that particular thing. I mean who is going to think the picture is cute when my nose is in the way right?! Once I took a second look though, I realized it wasn’t as big of a deal as I thought.

I started to scroll through Instagram to look at other people’s pictures and see what I noticed. All I noticed was beautiful, happy, people. I know of some accounts where they have addressed their insecurities and when I heard what they were I was so shocked because that never even crossed my mind while looking at them. It may be the first thing they see, but it’s never the first thing I see. You literally have to train your brain into seeing that vice versa as well. No one is critiquing you the way you are, and if they are—you’re doing something right with yourself because they are jealous!

Overanalyzing the way other people look sounds like a very judgemental and critical thing to do, but I don’t do it to pick out others flaws. I do it to understand that literally EVERYONE has flaws and insecurities. EVERYONE. I have to remind myself of that every day. That is why I adore when YouTubers upload vlogs when they aren’t wearing makeup and snap chat throughout their day. It reminds me that not everyone looks their 110% best all of the time, and that it’s okay for me not to as well.

I have wanted to get a nose job since I was in the 6th grade, and maybe one day I will. I have nothing against plastic surgery if it’s something you truly want. However I don’t want it to be something I do so that other people will like me more, or so that I will like me more. I just want it to be something I do if I have the money and if I still want it in a few years. I want to be completely comfortable with the way that I am before making any big decisions about my looks, and I have a lot of work to do and a long way to go before I am there.

What are some ways you own your insecurities? Is there anything I should add?

Thanks for reading,

xo Sara

Snow in Vancouver?!

Vancouver Got A Snow Day!

If you don’t already know, I am from Vancouver BC, Canada. When most people think of Canada they think of maple flavoured snacks, extra polite people, and snow… lots and lots of snow! Well in Vancouver we don’t see a whole lot of it. Usually once every winter we will get snow but it either doesn’t stick to the ground or doesn’t last longer than a day. Our city definitely does not fit with the rest of the country as far as the harsh winters go. Being someone who drives, I am generally very okay with that. Due to the fact that we don’t experience very much snow, as a city we all kind of forget how to human when it does snow. That can make driving seriously dangerous. It is funny though how crazy everyone gets.

Fast forward to this past week, and Vancouver’s weather game has changed! We got quite a large dumping of snow last Monday and it made the roads crazy, schools close and some businesses as well. Seriously, I’m not kidding about forgetting how to human – 3 inches of snow and we close schools. It’s comical, and makes me love this city even more. However, we assumed that would be our snow fall for the season and we enjoyed it while we had it. Turns out we were in for an even bigger snow storm than our city has seen in years. It hit early Friday morning and lasted all throughout Saturday morning.

Generally I am a big scrooge about snow; it makes the world look beautiful but the obstacle it creates for getting around can be very stressful. This time around I decided to take advantage of its beauty, so my friend Kristen and I ventured out to get some winter-esque photos!

Go figure, a few hours later the storm got worse and I ended up sliding diagonally down a snowy street. Then I proceeded to get myself stuck in the centre of the road. Needless to say it gave me an insane bout of anxiety, I was late for work and I didn’t have access to my car for 3 days. I am so glad we got some great photos, and it was a refreshing change from all the rain we’ve been getting (2 months non-stop of rain, I’m not even kidding), but I am grateful that I don’t live somewhere with a lot of snow because I don’t think I could handle it.

Below are some of the photos that we took. We went out on two separate days and these are just a few. I plan on sharing some more in future posts! Hope you enjoy 🙂

What is the weather like where you live?

Thanks for reading,

xo Sara

Photos of me are taken by my friend Kristen, you can find her photography instagram page here: @ksbphotography

All other photos are taken by me.

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Gotta have my Starbs, always!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

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This is one of my favourites!

 

 

5 Tips For Getting Out of Bed When You’re Depressed

As someone who has struggled with depression and anxiety for the majority of my life, I have firsthand experience with what it’s like trying to get yourself out of bed. Getting out of bed can be a struggle for everyone at some point, but when you’re in the midst of a bad depressive episode the only thing you want to do is sleep. That’s when having responsibilities can be a challenge because if you aren’t getting up, the consequences can be major. If you’re like me, you’ve probably grown tired of people telling you to just suck it up, and to get up and take on the day in spite of how you’re feeling. Sometimes that’s just not an option. Over the years I’ve come up with a short list of things I do that help me crawl out from under the covers, even on the worst days.

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  1. Set up the coffee pot the night before. If you’re someone like me who deeply depends on coffee to get the day started, then the most beneficial thing you can do for yourself is remove all of the work and thinking from the morning. This may sound simple, but if all you have to do is get up and push a button to get your steaming cup of caffeine, it’ll be a lot less intimidating. Even better if you have a coffee pot with a timer! If coffee isn’t your thing, fill the teapot with water before you go to bed and have the teabag already in the cup so all that’s left to do is boil water and pour. This can work for any of your morning routines in the kitchen; whether
    that’s prepping as much of your breakfast as possible, or getting the blender or toaster out for easy access! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been able to get up easier, knowing all I had to do was push a button. Just try it, and tell me if it works for you!
  2. Clean up the kitchen. If you don’t do anything else before going to sleep, tidy the kitchen! It will make your morning so much easier. There is nothing worse than waking up to a sink full of dishes and a counter top scattered with pots, pans and last night’s leftovers. Of course this is easier said than done, and it can be difficult when depressed to muster up the energy to do this; but I’m telling you that waking up to a tidy kitchen will allow your mind to feel less cluttered. Plus it’ll be far easier to get breakfast ready to go and find the coffee pot! This doesn’t mean you need to scrub the sink, mop the floors and clear out the fridge; all you need to do is clear the counter tops and be done with it!
  3. Decide on your clothes before bed. You’re probably noticing that most of these tips take place the night before, and that’s because it is much easier to do things when you’re already awake versus when you’re dreading waking up. So tip number 3 is to decide on your outfit and how you’re doing your hair (if applicable) before you hit the pillow. You don’t even need to physically get the outfit ready—although that’s an added bonus! Just simply thinking about it, checking the weather, where your day is going to take you, and maybe just making a note about it in your phone so you don’t forget. It also helps to shower at night so you have less to do, and it takes you less time getting ready because you don’t have to moisturize or blow dry your hair. This tip can save you if you’ve woken up late, or struggled to get up; and it also takes the stress out of it in the morning.
  4. Book appointments for early morning. This tip generally works on days when you aren’t working, or in school or wherever it is you normally have to be 5 days a week. On my days off, I find it the absolute hardest to get myself away from my pillow and comforter. I have no obligations beating down on me, and no mangers expecting me to be at work. I tend to sleep in a lot later, and then I feel like I’ve already wasted my whole day—so what is even the point of getting up? I would be lying if I said there were days where I just… didn’t. However, I have found that by making an appointment for around 9 or 10am on my days off, it really helps get me motivated for the rest of the day. I mean of course there aren’t always appointments you need to book like doctor, dentist or counsellor, but if you make a plan with a friend to get together for coffee it’ll work the same! By making it earlier in the day it forces you to get up and be somewhere and gives your body time to adjust to the day. Then when it’s over and you’re home, it is slightly less tempting to dive into bed and cocoon yourself.
  5. Baby steps. If you are finding the thought of getting up and getting ready for the day, making breakfast, and driving to work extremely intimidating; try taking it slow. Get from your bed to the couch, and once you’ve adjusted move your way to the kitchen and start the coffee maker. Go back to the couch for a minute if you need to, and then go brush your teeth. Once you get started you’ll start to feel better and will be able to finish your routine. Put on some music if it helps!

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Those are my 5 tips for getting out of bed when you’re depressed! I’m not going to be the one to tell you that exercise, meditation and essential oils are what will help, I mean I’m sure they would but they aren’t the only options! Not to mention, they can tend to feel kind of overwhelming. These tips are more like basic survival skills when in a time of need. I hope these helped you, and if they did I would love to hear about it! Depression is different for everyone, so if you have any other helpful tips please feel free to comment them down below!

Thanks for reading,

xo Sara

Why I Decorated Early for Christmas and Why You Should Too!

If you told me a year ago, that I would have my Christmas tree up in the middle of November I would have laughed in your face. I grew up in a house where we decorated on December 1st every year. No sooner and no later. It was a day we all anticipated and when it came, the attic seemed to have thrown up garlands, glitter and Santa Claus ornaments. It was an absolute blast!

Then I grew up, moved out and had my own place to decorate. I had a small tree with a few scattered glass figurines of snowmen. My parents moved and in the process had to stay in rental for a few months without access to their proper décor. My mom made due with what she could but it wasn’t the same.

After that year, things seemed to continuously get worse around the holidays. In 2013 my mom spent Christmas in the hospital for an unknown medical issue, and my dad passed away on Halloween of 2014. Two days later my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She made it home for Christmas that year but was too sick to remember it. Come Christmas 2015, she was ecstatic and determined to make it the best one yet since she had missed so many years prior. Her tree was beautiful (as usual) and she was set on spreading the Christmas spirit even though the majority of my family, including myself, were being a bunch of grinches. We’d all been through a lot and the time of year seemed to hold a dark cloud over our family. We were scared of what was to come, and rightly so. My mom never made it to Christmas, as she passed away on December 16th, 2015.

Needless to say, last Christmas was one of the hardest yet. I have been dreading this season all year long. I wanted to put my foot down and refuse to decorate or partake in Christmas activities. A lot has changed since last Christmas, I have a long list of people who are no longer in my life and it has been a very challenging experience. However, try as I might, I can’t help but give in to the excitement and beauty that is the Christmas season. The decorations, the atmosphere, the chilly weather; it brings such joy even when it comes with bad memories.

So instead of being a scrooge this year, I took inspiration from one of my favourite Youtubers, Nikki Blackketter and put my decorations up on November 13th. Nikki was so open with her audience about not being in the best spirits following some life things, and to make herself feel better she put her Christmas tree up insanely early. I thought that was so awesome!

If you’re feeling down, or in a funk, or even if you just love Christmas decorations and see no reason to wait; I highly recommend putting them up ASAP! The warm glow of the lights on the tree in a dimly lit living room, feel like a cozy hug. Especially on a cold day after work. My favourite thing to do now is to make a cup of tea or coffee, grab a book or turn on my current favourite tv show and just relax.

I’m the type of person who mainly prefers bright rooms, with natural light and fresh air but due to the fact that I live in a dark basement suite where my lightbulbs burn out once a week, it is such a refreshing feeling to actually enjoy the darkness. I like my house better in the dark at Christmas time, because that means the lights really stand out. I also love that it makes it feel like the season has begun early, and therefore I am ready to go to all of the Christmas markets near me, and light mazes and tree-lighting festivals, I can’t wait!

As a kid, I always found the Christmas season to go by WAY too fast, but if you start early you can really stretch it out and enjoy it for so much longer. I remember getting that sad feeling on Christmas morning, knowing that the hype was over and by tomorrow it would all be over, when I didn’t even feel like I got to enjoy it. So now, as an adult, I have decided to make it last longer but starting early. I mean why not? The malls all start the day after Halloween, and why should we let them have all the fun?!

I hope this inspired some of you to put up your decorations early, and if it did I would love to know!

xo Sara

Why I Love Mugs

There is something about a steaming cup of coffee in a giant mug between both of my hands that is so satisfying to me. I love mugs. I absolutely love them. Growing up, my mom always had to have a matching set of dishes. The dishes all had to match each other and any mismatched items had to be removed from the cupboard. Even now, I know better than to get her a cute mug or glass for a gift because I know the fact that it won’t match the rest would bother her. As for me, I love having mismatched mugs. I feel like every mug I have tells a story; that may sound weird but hear me out. I have a small collection going right now, and I can’t wait for it to get bigger.

I have one mug that was a gift from my boyfriend’s grandma that has a Paris theme because she knows me well enough to remember that I am obsessed with Paris and the Eiffel Tower (unfortunately I have yet to see it in real life—one day!). I think it’s so sweet and thoughtful of her to know that about me and think of me when she saw it. I have 2 mugs from the recent trip my boyfriend and I took to Mexico back and June, and every time I use one I am reminded of the adventure we had there. Plus it helps that they are super cute too!! One of my favourite mugs at the moment is a giant mug from one of my friends that pictures two of my obsessions wrapped up into one place: cats and coffee. Each side has a photo of a cat with either the caption, “catfeinated” or “decatf”. It’s purrrfect! [See what I did there ;)]. I love that it is large because it fits lots and lots of coffee, but even more so I love that it was such a random, thoughtful gift. She saw it and thought of me and just grabbed it. There’s nothing better than knowing you’re being thought about when you’re not around :).DSCN0615 (2)

I have more in my collection but those are just some of the ones that stand out. One day when I have my own house and more space to put stuff, I really want to make a “mug wall” where I can put hooks up to hang all of my mugs so I can show them off.

Maybe it’s a little strange to have such a weird obsession with mugs, but they all have a story and I think that’s what makes them special. Plus, there are some seriously cute mugs out and about these days… I mean have you ever been to Chapters?! Finally, the best thing about mugs is the fact that they hold COFFEE!! …but I’ll save that obsession for another post :P.

Thank you for reading,

xo Sara

Pumpkin Patch Fun!

I spent the day at the pumpkin patch with a friend of mine the other week, and it was such a blast! I haven’t been to a pumpkin patch since elementary school and I thought I’d be too old for it now; but if we’re being honest here… do we ever get TOO old for big pumpkins and farm animals?! I think not!DSCN0485 (2)

Of course we had to get some cutesy photos! What would the day be without it? Fall has never been my favourite season, I’ve always been more of a Summer girl—but how can I resist the colours?! It really brightens up any photo which really makes me swoon.
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I am not much of a pumpkin carver myself, but I want to try using glue and glitter to make them super cute! I’ve seen it done by people all over the internet and I think it looks really fun! I especially want to try it on the mini pumpkins, to make a really cute Fall centre piece! The little ones are just so ADORABLE!
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Once we finished with our pumpkin patch adventure, we went to a park to steal some leaves! I know you must be wondering.. why?
Well my friend has an active instagram account for her pups, and she needed some Autumnal photos for her followers viewing pleasure. However, with the pups running about in her backyard, the grass has turned to sand and the trees aren’t leafy. SO because I am such a fantastic friend, I brought her to a park with an overabundance of leaves, and we filled up bags to our hearts content and brought them over to her house for a doggie photo shoot! What could be more fun?! I couldn’t resist snapping a photo of the beautiful trees before we left!
DSCN0513And what would a cheesy dog photo shoot be, without some cheesy dog photos!?
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IMG_3525 (2)My boyfriend thinks these photos are absolutely ridiculous and very staged! I will tell you one thing, the pumpkins are staged… the dogs — completely candid! Love these pooches though!

Thanks for reading!!

xo Sara

Why NOT me?

I was reading briefly through an old journal of mine, and I came across an entry about wanting to pursue singing. I have always been hesitant because I am my own worst critic. Even writing about it makes me uneasy. Yet, I have loved it since birth. When I was 3 years old I used to sit in the back seat of the car and belt out all the words to every Shania Twain song. To me, it’s really crazy because this journal entry is from June 2012. Imagine what I could have accomplished if I began pursuing my dreams back then. So today, I attempted to register for vocal lessons. I haven’t set an official date yet but it’s still a GIANT leap forward for me. It’s terrifying, but it feels good.

I have been seeing this quote over and over lately, “If you wait until you’re ready, you will be waiting the rest of your life” and it really resonated with me because it is totally true! I mean if you think about how often you hear successful people say that if they knew what they would accomplish, they would have started sooner. Who knows what will become of anything, but it’s at least worth the shot right?DSCN0440 (2)

I also happen to adore inspirational quotes. If you follow me on Pinterest you would see the amount I have collected over the years. I am a tad obsessed. They really have a way of capturing an emotion you’re feeling in just a few short words and it just hits you right in the face!

I have felt similar feelings of uncertainty about writing and putting myself out there as well, but I have been thinking about it for years. I always assume no one would want to hear or read or see anything from me; there is so much else out there. People who have put more time in or start out stronger or who are just more appealing. I know I am not the only person who deals with these kinds of feelings, so I have decided to change my state of mind from “Why me?” to “Why NOT me?” and you should too!

I really want to share the process of me learning to motivate myself and redirecting the voices in my head, in hopes of inspiring others as well. Self-doubt is a burden and it’s challenging to work against but I know we are all capable of overcoming it. So here is to a clean slate!

Why Not Us?!

Thanks for reading,

xo Sara