Saturday, August 30, 2014

{this moment} - and the weekly {Smile-Up}

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"There are no ordinary moments." ~Way of the Peaceful Warrior

{no ordinary moments} - Photos capturing moments from the week. Simple, special, extraordinary moments.
 -  using Daily Gratitude to see the world as anything but ordinary. -

Served with the weekly {Smile-Up} - gratitude practices to love and appreciate your life. 

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' and 'smile up' in the comments to share with the world.
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{no ordinary moments} 

{my week of photos - 365 Grateful Project}


{Smile Up}:

Hike with my handsome man ♥  Making it to flagpole! Woo!
Mornings with the boyfriend, waking up without any rushes. 
Tam putting on a concert just for me Gah! Talented musicians!    
Getting to catch up with one of my best friends now that she's back in town! 
Time with my two favourite local ladies - girl talk and fun 
Every time I see my furbabies    
Random adventures with my bestie
Playing my adorable nieces and seeing my sister 
Getting to talk to my littlest sister   
All the ridiculously sweet things Tam does for me -- and cheers me up on a bad day
Clearing out awful "friends"/people from my life
Pink Hair! ^_^
Finishing my market season with a blast!
Bumping into friends I haven't seen in a while
All the amazing support I have had through this huge life transition
Finishing packing up and ready to move! Woo! 

Loving: Epic Thunderstorms • Different Hair Colours • Hikes • Fashion Layers • Sweet Moments • The Art of Sketch • Pretty You and Me • Mucisians • 

Interests for the week:
Reading: random blogs  
✯  Current Anime/Manga: None. :o
✯  TV Shows/Movies:  mmm… also none lately.
Music Playlist: Autolux. sMAshEArth. Summer Kill. Hollywood Undead. In Flames. Brand New.
Food Faves: Daiya Pizzas Taco Salad Mountain Magic Cookies   Avocado Mousse BeanField Chips Kale Chips Homemade Waffles

Lessons of the week: 
 Sweet, thoughtful gestures and actions bring smiles; so give and receive. Remember to be your own Self-Motivator! Writing is the best medicine to release thoughts, angers, and wisdoms.   There will always be people who gossip--don't sink down to their level; brush yourself off and keep being awesome--let their own misery is their own problem…
From my amazing friend: "Anyone who has something to say about your life is clearly lacking any sense of fulfilment in their own.
No one EVER has any right to comment on how you live yours. It's simply none of their business. What they think is meaningless and simply proof of the unsatisfied hole in their own lives." ☀ 

Wishing you all the plenty of magical moments and an amazing week ahead! 
So much Love and Hugs! 


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Thursday, August 28, 2014

☺ "Against Balance" ☺

We hear about balance a lot in our day-to-day struggle to be human, to do our best, and to find our calm and our perfect bliss in our lives. When a lovely woman in my own life shared this piece, I couldn't help but pass it along. I think it sums up the idea and struggle with "balance" perfectly. 
I hope you enjoy! 

Against BALANCE...

 Dear Ones -

 The other night at my event in St Paul, a young woman asked me about how I achieve balance in my life.

 First of all, I love that she thinks I have achieved balance in my life!

 Secondly, I felt the need to speak out once more against the subtle tyranny of the word BALANCE, which I think haunts and punishes modern women more and more every day. 

 We are constantly being told that we should be achieving balance — that we should somehow exquisitely be negotiating the relationships between our work lives, our home lives, our romantic lives, our health and well-being, our spiritual selves. You can't read an interview with a famous woman these days that the journalist does not applaud her for having achieved BALANCE....and then if you turn the pages of that magazine, you will find ten more articles showing how you can achieve balance. too!

 Be careful. 

 The word BALANCE has tilted dangerously close, I fear, to the word PERFECT — another word that women use as weapons against themselves and each other. 

 To say that someone has found the secret to a balanced life is to suggest that they have solved life, and that they now float through their days in a constant state of grace and ease, never suffering stress, ambivalence, confusion, exhaustion, anger, fear, or regret. Which is a wonderful description of nobody, ever. 

 Balance, when we do find it, is a breathtakingly temporary condition. We stand upon a world that spins at 2000 miles an hour. Our minds, meanwhile, spin at 200,000 miles an hour. We collide every day with other humans who are also sliding and spinning wildly. The landscape of our lives, therefore, changes by the minute. You find your balance one day and think, "Hooray! I have solved it" and then five minutes later the world utterly transforms again, and you're knocked on your ass one more time.

 That's just how life is on this planet — messy, fast, out of control, unpredictable. It's all terribly interesting, but also terribly unstable. 

 That being the case, I dropped the myth of BALANCE a long time ago. (I buried it right next to PERFECT.) My life seems happiest — as I tried to explain to this young woman the other night — when I just surrender to the madness, and embrace the glorious mess that I am...and also when I embrace the glorious mess that everyone else is, and the glorious mess of the world itself. My life gets the most painful when I try to set the entire mess (myself other people, life itself) into order. 

 The world is like a dropped pie most of the time. Don't kill yourself trying to put it back together. Just grab a fork and eat some of it off the floor. Then carry on.

 If you can get some stuff done in the chaos sometimes, god bless you. If you can basically hold it together, propping yourself up with duct tape and glue, rock on. If you can manage stay upright even one hour a day, you're doing pretty great, as far as I'm concerned. And if you can be kind to the other stumbling fools around you half the time — well, that's just heroic. 

 Basically, I think we are all just sloppy stupendous champions.





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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

♥ Vegan Cuts SnackBox + Marketplace ♥

"Discover the Best Vegan Products"

Vegan Cuts has long-since been a favourite website of mine for vegan goodness, and so I am excited to finally be writing more fully about them. First off, I'll give a little introduction… 

Vegan Cuts is an amazing website dedicated to bringing shoppers wholesome vegan products, from food to clothes to beauty products to more, at bargain prices. All the sellers offer their products at discounted prices. Vegan Cuts also makes it their business to know about new products, fantastic products, and basically all-things-vegan.  

About Vegan Cuts
At Vegan Cuts, we make it fun and easy to put your money where your values are by supporting vegan-friendly businesses.

Vegan Cuts is a network of tempeh-loving, smoothie-drinking vegans coordinated by John and Jill, a vegan couple who see veganism as a way to live a life of abundance while making choices that show compassion towards all living creatures.

Now, while Vegan Cuts offers a wide variety of fantastic products, what is extra awesome about them are their Snack and Beauty Boxes. These boxes feature a host of different products every month at trial and snack sizes for shoppers to experience and indulge. This is a fantastic way to discover and try new vegan products. You can sign up to get these boxes delivered monthly, or order whenever your heart desires. They are fantastic! And they are so much fun to get a taste of the joys and noms of being vegan. Also, every so often Vegan Cuts offers other unique "special edition" boxes, like vegan starter kits, beauty essentials, and (most recently) a Sundae Kit (nomnomnom!!).

Below is my little Snack Box review and unboxing for all you ReLovers viewing pleasure. 

If you are interested in trying out the Snack or Beauty Boxes, please click the links below*! I have also included links to the Vegan Cuts marketplace where they have tons of amazing products to choose from and to discover. 

LINKS!!! ^_^
Beauty Box:

*This review and post has not been paid for by Vegan Cuts, however, by clicking the links above you directly support ReLove as I see small commissions off sales from their website. Please know that this in no way, shape, or form has an influence on my opinion of Vegan Cuts or the products they sell. All opinions are expressly mine. At ReLove honesty always comes first, and I only Only support and promote companies I adore and can stand by. Any purchases made through those links are super gratefully appreciated, and, again, support ReLove as well--so thank you! :)

If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

{life reflections} The Human Capacity to Judge, and Incapacity to be Happy for Another

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{life reflections}
 Weekly thoughts and rambles. A glimpse into my mind and world. 
Entries that I might jot down in my Happy Diary; the release of thoughts to flow uninhibited. Reflections from the soul. 
Reflections of life.  

I hope to leave you inspired. 
If you want to share your own reflections of the week please leave a link to your "life reflections" entry in the comments for all to find and see.
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The Human Capacity to Judge, and Incapacity to be Happy for Another

Life has generally been feeling pretty amazing. It feels like the storm is finally passing and the sunshine can brightly beam its beautiful rays back down into this chaotic life. Life genuinely feels positive, optimistic, and full of new life, passion, joys, and excitement. 
But I know what some of you might be thinking… she's lying, she's making it up, she's trying to convince the world that she's happy when she's not. 
What prompts such an accusation, you might ask? Well, there have been quite the new experiences and lessons through such big changes in my life, and people's reactions and behaviours have perhaps been the most interesting, if not annoying, or disheartening, to see. 
The thing is that I did expect a certain amount of gossip, a certain amount of people's opinions to twist the story of my recent divorce around and redeliver it in a less amicable way. Things between me and my husband have been as smooth as they can be. I don't hold anything against him, and I hope he doesn't hold anything against me either. What I have found annoying is that people try to messy that. It's as if people are so afraid of change (even if it's not to do with them but simply around them) that they have to fight it any way they can, or pour fuel on the fire, or start a fire altogether. People are unable to be happy for others. People also judge others entirely too freely and unthoughtfully. This has been a huge eye-opener to a concept I was already fairly familiar with. However, it never ceases to amaze me.
The thing is that I don't want to be posting publicly about this whole divorce with my (ex)husband. I have written bits and pieces about my own perspective and lessons along the way regarding these big changes in my life--as a reflection of life, being human, and the experience of learning and growing and helping one another in the process (I am a writer, after all). But I have kept things respectfully distant as to the details of our relationship-ending; and, I do believe, with tact. This is when gossip becomes extra annoying. I have been pretty open about things that I felt a certain need or wish to, so that people may understand things and Not gossip. What people don't seem to realize is that gossip can be hurtful, it can make a mess of an amicable situation, and it can prompt unnecessary drama. On a personal level, this has prompted all sorts of feelings in me, mainly a certain bitterness towards humanity, I've come to realize. For some reason I'm having a hard time letting this go. Perhaps I'm too emotional. Perhaps I do care too much what people think. Perhaps it is just that I do want to keep this divorce as smooth and kind as possible for him and for me. Or perhaps it's just because I feel like I need to justify my actions now. 
I don't think I need to justify myself to anyone. My life is my life. But it's a difficult thing somehow to wrap our heads around. It's not fun to have our integrity challenged, especially when we do the best that we can in any given situation. I feel as if this is a topic plenty of people can relate to--just as with my last topic of having our sense of self challenged; very similar topics, I must admit. 
There is a part of me that just wanted to believe that people would keep their noses aptly where they belong. There is a part of me that hoped people would just, basically, be decent human beings. What is this human attachment to drama? What is this human need to gossip and place their own opinions wrongly into a situation they know nothing about? What is this human impulse to judge? What is this human addiction to see the most negative in someone else's situation? More importantly, what is this human mentality that makes people unable to be Happy for someone else? 
Instead of just looking at someone's situation and going, "oh, they look happy. Therefore I am happy for them," people have to look at it and go, "oh, it's a mask. What are they trying to prove to everyone? They must actually be unhappy and are just trying to hide it." 
I think it's a pretty large reflection of our society as a whole. How badly are we conditioned to be unhappy? How conditioned are we to be jealous, envious, and generally negative towards other people? Through plenty of personal experiences, and through plenty of hearing, watching, and learning about other people's experiences, I've come to learn that people generally are incapable of being happy for someone else's successes. We are not in competition with one another, and the sooner people can realize that, the sooner we will all get along. Not only that, but the sooner people can learn to actually be Happy for someone else's successes, then the more you welcome opportunities and success into your own life. 

There are happy people in the world. There are Good Things genuinely in people's lives. I have worked hard to make happiness a part of my life, to welcome good things, to experience joys, to learn, to grow, to make my life what I want it to be. So, yes, I say this with confidence: I love my life, I am Happy, I feel good about the future, and I am not just saying this to hide some inner dark corners of myself. I have learned to be a pretty open person--perhaps too open for my own good at times. I have learned to accept being human. I have learned to embrace my darkness instead of pretending it's not there. I have learned to be Happy, and I am still learning to deal with the flow of the storms that come in and out of life. But one thing you will not find me doing is being something I am not. I have nothing to prove to anyone but myself. I am not trying to convince anyone that I am happy. I am not trying to convince anyone that I made the right decisions in my life. I am not trying to convince anyone that I am in love again. These are things I genuinely feel, things in my life that I have worked hard at. You don't have to be happy for me, I don't need your validation; I merely wish that you could be happy enough in your own life instead of deflecting on other people. It makes me sad to see it, and I have seen it plenty of times (people deflecting their miseries onto other people). I have watched plenty of friends and people close to me affected by this negative mentality. It's a shame. And it's silly. People need to learn to be happy for one another, support one another. People need to learn to stop assuming things about others, because unless you've walked a lifetime in someone else's shoes then you simply cannot understand, and therefore certainly cannot judge. 

I say these things not to justify myself anymore, I say these things because I feel there needs to be a major shift in the human mentality. Fortunately, I am also surrounded by so many wonderfully, incredibly enlightened and conscious people; people that strive to actually be happy and good and positive. I understand we are all just human, we are just trying, learning, struggling, and striving for better. But that positive shift is so important. When you observe another person's life, do not assume, do not judge, do not gossip. 

Life isn't rainbows and butterflies all the time for anyone, but I choose to focus more of my attention on the joys and things that excite me and make me happy, instead of complaining and dwelling on the negative. That is why the picture of my life I paint is happy and good, because that is what I strive for every day, that is what I Choose my life to Be; and that is why, for the most part, I am genuinely blissfully happy. I recommend everyone strives and works towards the same, because the potential exists in all of us. 


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