Five Faves

Hi Everyone!

I hope that your fall is off to a great start! Here in Montreal we are back on a partial lockdown which means spending a lot more time at home. Thankfully being in lockdown has given me a new appreciation for my home and it has forced me to actually work on my space rather then just dream about it.  It has also forced me to learn how to prioritize my mental health and incorporate methods to relax and unwind into my lifestyle. This weekend is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada but due to the lockdown there are no gatherings allowed. While I normally enjoy a holiday meals with loved ones I have never been a fan of the standard turkey dinner. Seeing as how I am alone this year I decided to do something different, so I am channeling my inner Samin Nosrat of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat and having beef ribs, jasmine rice and green beans along with a glass of my favourite red wine. I am looking forward it even if it is unique as a Thanksgiving meal. This year has been challenging in many ways, which has made me incredibly grateful for things that make me smile, that I enjoy and make me happy.  Here are five faves that I am currently loving:

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I have been a fan of Tracy Tutor since she first debuted on Million Dollar Listings Los Angeles. I have always been a fan of the show but it needed some powerful feminine energy and Tracy Tutor was the perfect addition. She has endless hustle, an incredible sense of style and is nobody’s pushover which makes for great television viewing. While her and I are in a similar age group she is who I want to be when I grow up. When I heard that Tracy had written a book I immediately ordered it. It’s an easy read, written with Tracy’s honest, hardworking, no nonsense attitude and encourages the reader to push forward despite the fear that they may be facing. And the cover is absolute goals. She looks strong, powerful and in control which is exactly how she wants the reader to feel all the while embracing their own personal fears. I enjoyed this book and will be referring to it often when I am having doubts about myself.

My best friend recently gifted me this notebook. I love the pretty mint green colour and the Coco Chanel quote is always a perfect reminder. The notebook sat on my counter for a couple of days while I thought about how I wanted to use it. One morning while listening to a podcast while getting ready for work the practice of having a gratitude journal was mentioned. I had heard of this practice before but I had never really connected with it previously. This time though, the idea of gratitude journaling sounded like just what I needed, and I now had the perfect notebook to journal in. It’s too soon to call it a habit just yet, but so far I am really enjoying this practice. I find that for me the best time to journal is right after dinner. Everyday I think about my day and find ten things that I am grateful for. Some days are easier then others, but I have found that even taking some time to consciously think about how fortunate I am to live in a safe and comfortable home, that I have clean running water and food to eat and even the fact that I woke up in the morning. These are all things that I am incredibly grateful for and have often previously taken for granted.

I love listening to podcasts in the morning and I enjoy reading Domino magazine so I was thrilled when I heard that they now had a podcast. The first guest was one of my favourite designers Kelly Wearstler so of course I was immediately hooked. My favourite episode though was the recent one with design genius Jenna Lyons. I love Jenna’s work, from her time at J Crew to her swoon worthy homes that have been featured in Domino and in Athena Calderone’s Live Beautiful. I am so excited for Jenna’s upcoming projects which include a show on HBO Max and designing hotels. This episode in many ways reinvigorated my love of design and desire to learn and grow. Love it!

All of this extra time at home has me spending a lot of time in front of the television. While this is not ideal, and I am making a conscious effort to do other things like cook and read more, there are a few shows that I am loving at the moment. Emily In Paris has gotten a lot of buzz since it was released last week. While there is a lot about this show that could use some work (how exactly is she affording all of that Chanel on her salary?), there is also a lot to enjoy. Like many, I have dreamed about moving to Paris and experiencing all the magic that the city has to offer, and this show has helped to fill my travel dreaming heart while I am in lockdown. And while I didn’t love Emily’s outfits, her boss and Camille’s wardrobes more then make up for it.
Bad Boy Billionaires India popped up as a Netflix recommendation for me this past week and I was intrigued so I added it to my list. It is only three episodes with each one profiling a different Indian billionaire’s downfall. It’s eye opening and interesting and I binged all three episodes in two days. If you are interested in seeing how people around the world got too big too fast and were unable to sustain it then this show may be of interest to you.

This is Paris is a YouTube documentary that has gotten a lot of attention. I had heard that it was quite good and thought that I would check it out for myself. I loved it. The behind the scene insight on a celebrity that is often written off or badly characterized was intriguing and a great reminder that there is often more to people then what they seem or what they are willing to show you. While my life couldn’t be more different then Paris Hilton’s I connected with the subject matter in many levels and appreciated the insight that the documentary provided. It is a worthwhile watch.

All of this time at home has me focused on my environment and how to make it as enjoyable and comfortable as I can. One thing that many overlook is the scent of a home. I have been searching for many years to find a home fragrance that I loved. The standard ones from Glade and other popular brands seemed artificial, and I have lost count of the different brands of candles that I have tried in the hopes that something would stick. While browsing a home goods shop earlier in the summer I came across Laboratorio Olfattivo’s Zen-Zero fragrance and decided to give it a try. I love the combination of ginger, cedar wood and sandalwood and it leaves my home smelling fresh, cool and comforting. I will be picking up the Zen-Zero diffuser next to help to elevate the fragrance of my home even further. The scent makes me happy and has elevated my home environment, love it!

Thank you for stopping by Stylishly Zen today! I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

Just a Little Personal Note

I had a ton of goals at the end of last year and at the beginning of January that included a ton of blog posts that I was so excited to create and share with you.  Then I allowed myself to be distracted by life, and here we are almost mid February and I am posting for the first time this year.  This post was not planned, I sat down last week to write a couple of posts, but I just wasn’t connecting to the words that I had typed out, or to the pictures on the screen.  So I once again put down my laptop and walked away.  Today though, I felt the need to write.  Not about anything that this blog is normally about but just life stuff.  I rarely share much about my personal life, but today I felt the need to write about something deeply personal to me.  I have been single for a very long time.  Confidence has always been an issue for me, the idea of putting myself out there was tough and I found it easier to hide.  So while my friends, family and what seemed like the rest of the world was putting themselves out there and living the highs and lows of romantic entanglements, I stayed single, watching from the sidelines.  There were moments when I made a slight effort, but the second anything seemed difficult I went running back to solitary living like a safety blanket I couldn’t give up.  The truth is that I have spent the majority of my life feeling like I am unworthy of love and my lack of a significant other only further proved this theory to myself.  Last year though I decided to make a genuine effort in the romantic relationship area of my life, and I was elated when I finally met someone who I actually enjoyed spending time with.  When he told me he loved me, I believed him.  It was the first time in my entire life that I was really excited about the possibilities that a romantic relationship could hold.  This is not to say that there were not hiccups.  There were moments when I questioned whether he was really interested in me, whether he had fallen out of love with me, whether we were both on the same page.  When I addressed this with him, I was told that it was just my insecurities that made me feel this way and if there were issues he would talk to me about it.  Stupidly I believed him.  Tomorrow was going to be our 6 month anniversary and yesterday he was talking about the restaurant that he had made reservations at.  We were going to just hang out today and spend some time with each other.  This morning he FaceTimed me to break up with me and I stupidly didn’t see it coming.  We hadn’t been fighting and I missed the subtle hints that this was coming.  The conversation lasted three minutes and I didn’t say much except for “ok” and “bye”.  Right now I am hurt, I am shocked and I am very very sad. I wish that I could just tell myself that he is an asshole and not worthy of my energy and time, but the truth is that I really do love him and I can’t just turn it off so easily.  I know that the love I feel will dissipate with time, but for now I feel bad for still feeling it.  I am also back to questioning my ability to be loved and I think that is what hurts the most.  Despite my insecurity about not being loveable, I know that I will be ok otherwise.  Life will go on and how I live my life moving forward is in my hands, even though I can’t imagine ever putting myself out there again.  I have survived much worse then this.  I know that 6 months is not a long time to be in a relationship and that I am very lucky that I am out of it now rather then waste years of my life on someone whom was not on the same page as I was.  It still stings.

Thank you for bearing with me as I put my feelings down on this post, I really felt the need to write about it just now. I will be back soon with tons of new posts on design, architecture and all things Stylishly Zen!

I hope that you are having a wonderful weekend and talk soon!  XXS

Quote by Nayyirah Waheed, Image via Google Images

Five Faves

Hi Everyone!

How is your fall going so far?  With the leaves changing, stunning sunsets (like the one above that I captured yesterday) and fabulous fall fashion, I am loving the new season so far!  Here are my five favourite faves for the month:

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With the cooler temps I am craving warming foods and getting creative in the kitchen every chance that I get.  This grilled zucchini with stracciatella looks simple enough to make yet delicious enough to want to enjoy on a regular basis as a health side dish.

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I recently ordered this coffee table book and I am loving it!  As you know travelling and decor are two things that I love so the combination that this book provides is perfect for me. I find myself escaping into it whenever I get the chance, love it!

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Fall fashion is always my favourite and this season is no exception.  I am especially loving pairing blazers with everything from a full suit to jeans, leggings or even a dress.  Here are three outfits that I am currently pulling inspiration from and my causal version for days when I am rushing but still want to look put together.

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I often find myself feeling really stressed out and it’s often difficult to change the way I think about stress.  I found the above image on Instagram (via @mindbodygreen) and I have decided to change my narrative.  Here’s hoping that I birth something great due to my narrative shift!

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I am overwhelmed with decorating decision for my condo which means that I have done very little.  I found this image for a bedroom recently in my home design file (via @coveteur) and it perfectly captures the vibe that I was hoping for in my new place.  It is now front and centre on my vision board as I move forward with my home decor project – wish me luck!

I hope that you are having a wonderful October so far, let me know what you are currently loving in the comments below.  I hope that you have wonderful day!  XXS

 

 

Five Faves

It’s hard to believe that we are half way thru 2019, but I am so happy to finally enjoy my favourite season of the year.  I absolutely LOVE the summer season, and while lately I feel like time is just moving too quickly, my goal for this summer is to take some time to slow down, just breathe and enjoy the things that make me happy as often as possible.  Here are five things that are currently making me very happy:

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This watermelon and halloumi salad is a summer staple in my diet during the warmer months.  While watermelon and feta seems so be a little more common, I love the salty bite that halloumi adds to the mix.

E70A11C1-F74D-4781-833B-36C7B9D5B46FI love to enjoy a chilled drink on the balcony when the weather is warm and sunny.  My two favourites being an april spritz or a glass of rose.  Le Pive was recommended to me a few years ago when I was on the hunt for a good but not too expensive rose and it has been one of my favourites ever since.  This year, I am loving it even more as it is now certified organic.  Clean, fresh and not overly sweet, Le Pive is the perfect wine to sit back and relax with during the warmer months.

A15506F9-3DF5-41B0-A4A0-631CB82FE79CI have not yet read the book but I got hooked on Big Little Lies last year.  Despite the fact that it was produced as a limited series, it is back for a second season and it is sooooo good!  Just when I thought that the cast couldn’t get any better, they add Meryl Streep to the mix and as always she is fabulous!  If you have yet to watch Big Little Lies, there is no time like the present.  It is the perfect excuse to head indoors and enjoy a bit of air conditioning while you get lost in the lives of the Monterey Five.B5DEF063-20CF-4BB4-BB62-EEB6757C1A20If you have not yet watched Brene Brown’s Netflix special A Call to Courage you are missing out.  Motivating and insightful, it is a must watch.  I am currently reading her latest book Dare to Lead which carries on the message that we need to learn how (and when) to be vulnerable and how to successfully work with and lead others.  I highly recommend it to anyone interested in self improvement, impactful leadership and collaboration.

CE3FDA9C-45BE-477F-8C67-27235E02FBA4I hate wearing socks and closed toe shoes, so as soon as the weather starts to warm up I happily pull out all of my sandals.  While normally I alternate between high heels and leather flats, lately all I seem to want to wear are my Brikenstocks.  They are comfy, cute and they go with many outfits (or so that’s what I have been telling myself).  It may even be time to invest in a new pair!  While the new Birkenstock Valentino version is not in my budget, I plan to admire them from afar as I add a new pair to my shoe collection.

Thank you for stopping by Stylishly Zen today!  I would love to hear what you are currently loving this month – let me know in the comments section!

I hope that you have a beautiful day!  XXS

Big Little Lies photo credit http://www.hbo.com, Birkenstock photo credit http://www.birkenstock.com

Walk Into It With Style

Hi Everyone!

June has been a very hectic month!  I unexpectedly completed my program early and I am now officially a certified Holistic Nutritionist along with being a holistic health and nutrition coach.  While I am very excited to begin this new chapter and career in my life, I am also feeling a bit of trepidation.  I have decided that the best thing to do is to lean into the fear as difficult as that may be at times.  With that in mind, my July mood board is filled with strong fashion detailing, a bit of motivation and esthetic inspiration as I work to lay the ground work to achieve the goals that I have set for myself.  Enjoy!

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Photo credits: @jenniferfisherjewelry, @happilygrey, @dylanlex, @alltrueist_btq, @pazhunter, @figtny, http://www.pinterest.com

I hope that you have a wonderful day! XXS❤️