31 July 2012

July Top Picks

We've been dashing here and there.
A wedding.
A visit from my parents.
Canmore, Banff and Calgary.
Home in Moose Jaw.

Lots of pictures to come.
For now, July's Top Picks...


I want everything this shop is selling.

When dreaming of vacations to come, I think of Italy and England.

Training is in full force and I am loving my running skirt from Patagonia!

Do you know what you want to do when you grow up?  This article from Forbes might help!  It has pictures!

My parents bought us a juicer and a blender for Moose Jaw!  So excited I downloaded Kris Carr's "Crazy Sexy Juices & Succulent Smoothies."  I've been making smoothies in Chicago, but I'm pumped to explore the juicing side of things!

Excited to try out these recipes for August - the month of clean living!

Do you like free stuff?  I do!  500 free things is even better!

This movie is stunning to watch and has some pretty important lessons in it as well.

The Olympics are on!  I thought the opening ceremony was long, but the Olympic flame is gorgeous!

Finally...Happy Wedding, J+A!  We are so glad we could spend the day with you!

20 July 2012


I'm excited.
I am heading back to Canada tonight!

It's going to be a great trip up north.
We've got a wedding to attend (yay!) and my parents will be visiting for a week.

We are going to show them how we do things up north.
Meaning...we are going to have a fantastic time.

Have a great Friday and an awesome weekend, everyone!

15 July 2012

A Walk About Town

For your viewing pleasure...
A little jaunt around Chicago's Millennium Park.

Enjoy and Happy Sunday!

14 July 2012

Flashback to Canmore

A couple of weekends ago, Canada Day and the 4th of July were upon us.
Dave and I decided last minute that I should fly up and meet him in Calgary.
We were both anxious to get out and do some camping this year, and that weekend was our chance.

We met at the airport and then immediately made our way to Canmore.
It was late, so we just stayed at a hotel in the area.

The next morning, we were off to a familiar haunt...Ribbon Falls.

The weekend was perfect.  We hiked in along the gorgeous Ribbon Creek Trail, set up camp and then took a four hour nap.  For those that know me...that in and of itself is no small feat...getting me to stay still for four hours at any time, especially for a nap means something!

We cooked over the fire, chatted with the other campers and then hung out by the communal fire pits.  

The next day, we tackled something I had wanted to do last year...that was to make our way up to Ribbon Lake.  In order to get there, you have to hike up to some chains that allow you to scale some pretty steep rock.  Dave and I were game and with teamwork, we succeeded!  The views were so worth it.  When you get over the chains, you find yourself at the top of Ribbon Falls looking down.  A little pool sits at the top where some unbelievably green moss grows and the water is crystal clear.

Once you are there, it is just a short hike to Ribbon Lake.  It was gorgeous, surrounded by snow and the water was clear.  There is another camping site at the lake and we may try for that next time.

Coming down, we made a stop at a grassy glen on the side of one of the mountains to sit, relax and reflect on the past few months.  I am always grateful for the time we take to be grateful for where we are and what we have in our lives.  

The blue sky above, the warm grass under our backs, the massive rocks making their way upward...we were surrounded by the things that bring us back to center. 

Very start of the hike in.
The Falls 

Dave...on the chains and prepping to scale the cliff
Oh yeah...we risked it!

Top of the Falls

Waterfall punchbowl
The Lake 
Furry friend at our site

The way out...

11 July 2012

Portland Flashback

Sarah, one of my nearest and dearest friends lives in Portland.
She and I were roommates for a year in Chicago and then she did one of the bravest things I've ever seen a person do...

With no job prospect, no real connections and a heavy dose of trust in the universe, she rented a U-Haul, packed it up and moved out to Portland to start a new journey.
I fully supported her gutsy move and I was so glad to connect with her in her new "home"town!

It was also great to be able to spend a little more time there.
Dave and I did a quick stop-off during our honeymoon, but there was so much more I wanted to see!

It was a great weekend.  We talked, we ate, we ate, we ate, we shopped, we ate, we hiked...

One of my favourite places on the trip was our hours-long ten-mile hike along Eagle Creek Trail.
Tons of waterfalls, lush greenery, hawks dipping and swooping overhead and lots of ground to cover.
It was an incredible day on the trail.
To prove it, I've posted photos below!

I added all of my favourite spots from Portland to the "Places" list.  
If you are ever in that neck of the woods, go check them out.

Thanks for a fantastic weekend, Sarah!  You are a rockstar!!!

Sarah and I getting ready to rock the trail!
Light through the mossy trees.
Waterfall...this picture does not do it justice.
Girl on a bridge!  Hi, Sarah!
Loving the air...I also look sleepy...or something...hm.....
Little ferns growing out of a rock.
One of the many falls along the trail.
Perfect trail food...guacamole, amazing power cookies, almonds, bananas and chips. 
Get there already!!!!  It's gorgeous!

09 July 2012

Ready to be Me

I've been doing a lot of self-reflection lately.
Thinking about the type of person I want to become.
Ruminating on my dreams and aspirations.
Tossing around ideas of what I want to do when I "grow up."

I find moments of contentment in my life right now.
But, it's never persistent.

I am of the belief that contentment and satisfaction should be a part of a person's every day experience.

So, what do I love and what journey am I willing to go on to get those things?

It can be pretty scary.  Over the weekend, I was with a group of friends and we discussed just this.
Sometimes the things you need the most require the most of yourself.
It requires you to be risky, daring and, as one friend put it, slightly arrogant.

Arrogant about your abilities, your strengths, your belief that you CAN make your dreams happen.

Arrogance and I aren't the best of friends, but when my friend said it...it just clicked.
It made sense.

Another friend said that he couldn't believe it took him until now to actually be doing what he is passionate about.  But, he said he sure is glad he is doing it now.  This friend is ten times happier and will be ten times more successful because his heart is in it.  His life is his dream.  His dream is his life.

I think that's awesome. 

I am ready to be brave.  To start living the life I've been dreaming about. 
I am ready to be me. 
It won't happen overnight...it's a journey, but I sure am excited for the ride.

03 July 2012

June Top Picks...

Recovering from the hiking and camping this past weekend.  

Happy Canada Day and Happy 4th of July!

To tide you over, here are my overdue June top picks!

Goodness in the form of DIY.

All of their music.

This show is my addiction and brings back memories of floating.

I dream of kayaking.

Dream cabins.

Finding solitude.

Secretly (okay, not so secretly) excited to see this movie and really excited to see this movie.

Western States 100 is inspiration.

So delicious for the Fourth!

Doing research on these for camping.

This song makes me want to run my heart out.

And a little ps...

To C and D, I hope both of you find health very soon.
You have lots of people thinking good things for you.
Including me.