• Body & Wellness

    Current Skincare Routine

    After having done Dr. Sandy Skotnicki’s Product Elimination Diet last June I worked with my medical esthetician at The Best You to create my new routine. Along with facial treatments (micro dermabrasion, micro needling, radio frequency and IPL) spread out through the year, I think my routine has served me well. The skin issues I had are well controlled or have disappeared. Some folks might look at the time and money I spend on my skin and judge it as frivolous, expensive or excessive. I know for me the time and money I spend enhances my sense of well-being. There are other things I don’t spend time or money on…

  • Body & Wellness,  Simplicity

    Minimalist Skincare

    Definitions For some people a minimalist skincare routine is all about having a minimal amount of products. It might be to save time, space, money or to avoid over cleaning and treating their skin. For others minimalist skincare is not about how many products they own, but using products with very few ingredients. They might focus on minimally processed natural ingredients. They might buy certain brands that contain few ingredients. They might make their own lotions and potions. For some it’s about minimal packaging so they have minimal waste when they are finished. My Minimalist Skincare Routine Minimalism for me is about simplifying the things I do day-to-day and creating space…

  • Body & Wellness

    Feel Good, Look Good

    For the past 5 years I’ve been focused on my quest for a simpler, healthier life. It’s been a fascinating and rewarding search. I’m constantly discovering strategies that help bring me into a more consistent state of equanimity. It may seem superficial to some, but focusing on my skin has been a part of my wellness because how I feel in my body and how I feel about my body helps me generate my Core Desired Feelings (CDFs). And ignoring my skin or mistreating it can take me off track. Let Me Explain As a woman in her late 40s my skin is changing. My hormonal balance is changing from my reproductive years…

  • Body & Wellness

    A Skin Care Journey – Part 2

    A few days ago I wrote an introductory post about my skin and the irritations and reactions I’ve been experiencing in recent years. I’ve been researching and reading books in hopes of finding a remedy. Most have been diet related. Recently though I read Beyond Soap: The Real Truth About What You Are Doing to Your Skin and How to Fix It for a Beautiful, Healthy Glow by Dr. Sandy Skotnicki (a dermatologist with over 20 years of professional experience) and it has me adding a new tool to my clear, smooth and radiant skin toolbox. Our skin’s appearance is due to a mix of genetics (about 60%) and lifestyle choices (40%).…

  • Body & Wellness

    A Skin Care Journey – Part 1

    I’m not sure where or when this recently published book – Beyond Soap: The Real Truth About What You Are Doing to Your Skin and How to Fix It for a Beautiful, Healthy Glow by Dr. Sandy Skotnicki – came on to my radar, but I know it did because when I saw it displayed during a recent bookshop trip I recognized it immediately as something that I had heard about and was a must-read for me. I’ve always been a bit skin obsessed and doing what I can so that my skin is blemish free, smooth and bouncy. The more I learn the more I realize that most of my efforts…

  • Body & Wellness,  Perimenopause

    Cheap Effective Natural Ways To Deal With Period Cramps

    Fennel & Ginger For Cramps, Flow & PMS One of my favourite sources for nutrition research is Nutrition Facts. Dr. Greger’s non-commercial, nonprofit, science-based website that provides free daily updates on the latest in evidence-based nutrition. In reading up about the increased flow and PMS symptoms during early perimenopause I found this video on the benefits of fennel seeds and ginger. It’s been found that fennel seeds work as well as ibuprofen for reducing painful cramps (without the side effects and way cheaper too!) and 1/8 tsp three times a day of powdered ginger can cut menstrual bleeding in half. Ginger also improves PMS symptoms such as mood, physical and behavioural symptoms while…

  • Body & Wellness

    Dull Dry Damaged Hair

    I’m a fan of YouTube make-up and hair tutorials – especially when it comes to retro looks. My first discovery was Iris J. She was especially active with her uploads from 2007-2010 and I referred to her work for my burlesque styling on the regular. What I liked about her videos besides being amazed by her beautiful long, thick locks was that she was well-spoken, poised and charming. The quality of the video is poor compared to today’s standards, but this was also before the current YouTube age of drama, clickbait and fast cuts. If the content is good and without negativity and gimmicks I’m a fan regardless of video quality.…

  • Body & Wellness

    My Hair Care Routine

    My hair care routine is always evolving based on my lifestyle activities and the refinement of my values. For nearly twenty years I had long dark hair that I dyed to cover up my grey. Now I have short salt and pepper hair. You can read all about that here. My different looks have required different products and tools. What has always remained the same is I have never washed my hair every day. When I Had Long Hair When I had long hair I would wash it every three days. I worked out at the gym almost every day so it got a bit greasy, but I kept it feeling fresh by…

  • Body & Wellness

    Protein Chia Seed Pudding

    I adore Protein Chia Seed Pudding. I think one reason is because I’ve always enjoyed tapioca pudding. As a kid I liked the texture and the creaminess. When I have tapioca pudding today (usually the vegan coconut version at Chu Chai – a fantastic veg Thai restaurant in Montreal) it reminds me of the comforts of childhood.  Rich, creamy desserts are a powerful thing. Now I’ve discovered that Protein Chia Seed Pudding is my adult version of this. Bonus – it’s much healthier than the original dessert version. I found this recipe from Georgie of Vegan Fitness TV (my favourite fitness YouTube channel). She and her partner Darren offer a free…

  • Body & Wellness

    How Not To Die – Video

    As many of you know I am a bit of a nutrition information junkie and I really enjoy the work of Dr. Michael Greger. He claims to have read every nutritional research journal of the year (now that is a nutrition info junkie – wink), He examines the research and synthesizes it for the average person interested in how food affects health, quality of life and longevity. He also brings a critical eye to how research actually doesn’t translate to improvements to the food industry. As someone who wants to live a healthy AND a simpler, more frugal life his work has been a very useful resource. Most of the things that make…

  • Body & Wellness

    Pretty Happy – Book Review

    I’m a huge fan of healthy lifestyle advice books. I’ve been a fan of them for a long time. I read those by doctors and specialists as well as those by celebrities. The first celebrity one I read was by Miss Piggy. It was 1979 and I was 8. I don’t remember any of her advice, but I do remember enjoying the book enough to take it out twice from the library. It may have been a satire, but I was drawn to its glamor and beauty aspects. The humour went over my head. Hey, I was 8 and my idea of true beauty was in its early stage of development…

  • Body & Wellness

    Fitness Journey

    These photos were taken 2 years ago over the course of 6 weeks of working out and eating 80% clean under the supervision of my trainer Sophie P Fitness. I think the results were pretty impressive. At the start point in early 2014 I was at around 160lbs.  Over the past 3 years I had gained weight (30lbs) and lost muscle tone.  Post-divorce I did a lot of emotional eating and excessive drinking as well as dealt with all the anxiety, depression, fear and over all stress that comes with struggling over how to rebuild one’s life. When I got sober in January 2014 I dropped 10lbs quite quickly and then…

  • Body & Wellness

    My Favourite Kale Recipe

    Ingredients 3 TBSP of Water 1 Clove of Garlic (crushed – though I love garlic so I thinly slice it) 1 tsp Red Chili Pepper Flakes 1 Bunch of Kale (or about four loosely filled cups – wash as you would lettuce and spin it but leave a wee bit of water on them) 1 TBSP Raisins 1 TBSP Coarsely Chopped Kalmata Olives 1 TBSP Lemon Juice (or more if you like lots of lemon) or Apple Cider Vinegar Using a large sauce pan sauté garlic and red chili pepper flakes in water for a few minutes (I choose water instead of oil because I like to reserve oil for…

  • Body & Wellness

    How Breakfast Changed My Life

    Breakfast. It all started with breakfast. But first let me back up a bit. After 17 years of being together I left my then-husband and went to live on my own. It was scary in many ways. It was the first time in my life that I ever lived alone. I was 39 and I went through a multi-year learning curve on the simple and complex aspects of being independent. One of the major adjustments I had to make was to learn to cook for myself – and only myself. I was used to cooking for us. At the very beginning I was all about convenience foods that I could…

  • Body & Wellness,  Personal Journey

    Public Declaration

    Sharing this blog post is a bit scary for me. I am declaring what is important to me. This declaration is about me making a commitment to myself. It is about me sharing a vision of my life. It is about inviting others to share in my journey of exploration and wellness. It’s also about making a list. You see, I want to share some personal life goals and use this special space that is Love-Yourself Living to further document my journey toward wellbeing. I want to be accountable. I want to do what I say I am going to do. I say all this knowing that I have publicly shared of myself…

  • Body & Wellness

    Juice Cleanse

    A few people had asked about the juice cleanse I’m doing this week so I thought I would write a little bit about it. For six days I am consuming nothing but fresh fruit and vegetable juices (mostly vegetable) and getting daily colonics as well as engaging in other cleansing activities (dry brushing, Epsom salt baths and neti pot nasal irrigation). It’s a supervised cleanse with an experienced colon irrigation specialist and holistic nutritionist. I decided to do it after we discussed various forms of fasting and cleansing in one of my nutrition classes. I have been eating very poorly or at least nutritionally inconsistently for the last few years…

  • Body & Wellness

    Crazy Sexy Diet Cleanse

    I am on Day 4 of my 21 Day Crazy Sexy Diet Cleanse by Kris Carr. I feel great today. I had some withdrawal-detox headaches and a crazy runny nose on Tuesday and Wednesday, but that seems to have subsided or even gone away. I neti potted today and it as the best it has ever been. I have issues with asthma and allergies. I have cleaned up my diet before and it helped to greatly improve my breathing and diminish my symptoms to almost none. My diet has absolutely sucked this past year (part of my whole rebelling against my past thing) and my body is suffering because of…

  • Body & Wellness,  Personal Journey

    Warrior 2 Past Present & Future

    Warrior Two is my favourite yoga pose. I had an instructor tell me that when you are in Warrior Two pose you have one part of you looking at the past and all you have done, seen and learned, another part of you firmly in the present, living in the moment, and another part of you looking towards the future. It really resonated with me. The pose feels good physically and emotionally for me. I have dabbled in yoga for a few years. I regularly took a class at the YMCA. I have had a membership at a fantastic studio called Breathe. I have done yoga at home. I have…