Monthly Archives

February 2016

In LIFESTYLE on
February 29, 2016

music monday // volume 2.

I don’t know about you guys, but for me- music is more than just a song an artist wrote or something that you hear on the radio. I don’t listen to music just because I love a certain artist, I listen to music because of the way it makes me feel, and I don’t care so much as to who the artist is or what they have done in the past- I like to break it down to a song and how it makes me feel in that moment when i’m listening to it. I use music to reflect on the mood I am currently in. This is why I love exploring music almost blind folded, using apps like Spotify and 8tracks allow me to find new tunes, and to pin point a song right down to how I am feeling in that exact moment. The apps let you do this by organizing music into playlists and genres for users to choose shuffling the music so you have no idea whats about to play. When focusing, either writing, studying or just relaxing in my living room while enjoying a good cup of coffee- there is nothing I love more than listening to chill music.

Lately, due to the weather conditions and lack of super cool activities to do- I have mastered the art of chilling- so I figured what better time to write about the type of music I love the most. Indie chill. From a young age I began to have an appreciation for good music. My parents put me in many extra curricular activities which involved music, one summer they even sent me to opera camp. Yes, you heard it right, opera camp. I was always looking to do more- so when the time was right I took it upon myself to learn how to play the acoustic guitar. This is when I started to appreciate indie music even more, listening to songs and wanting to learn and play them. I’m always looking for new indie beats to play on repeat, and if you’re into this type of music, i’m sure you are too. Heres a couple that iTunes says i’ve played more times than maybe I’d like to admit.

All time good indie tunes:

  1. Paper Kites- Bloom
  2. Gabrielle Aplin- Home
  3. Ingrid Michaelson- Open Hands
  4. Angus & Julia Stone- Devil’s Tears
  5. Ben Howard- Only Love

music monday 2

Another monumental moment that shaped my musical tastes and appreciation is all thanks to a show that will forever hold a place in my heart, a show I probably shouldn’t of been watching at the young age I was, a show that I believe changed the television industry in that genre because of the music which was in it. For those of you who haven’t figured out which show I am talking about yet, think sunshine, think the glory days (high school), think USA. I am talking about the OC baby. This television serious was so unique to tv because it was Indie, the music featured on the show was far from what was popular and being heard on the radio. The OC took unknown indie artists and showcased their musical talent on the show. Some of the songs played on the show are still today some of my favourite indie tunes which are go-to’s when I am in chill mode.

As heard on the OC:

  1. Alexi Murdoch- Orange Sky
  2. Band of Horses- The Ends Not Near
  3. Blind Melon- No Rain
  4. Coconut Records- West Coast
  5. Ian Broudie- Song for No One

music monday 2

If you have any cool indie tunes you’d like to share, please do so! I’m always looking to add to my list.

Happy Days!

xx Bella

 

In FASHION on
February 25, 2016

february blues

February Blues

I must start off by apologizing for my lack of bogging this week. I am over coming a serious case of the February blues. It was quite serious and I have just managed to crawl out from under my blankets for an hour to talk about this illness and share with you my remedies.

Okay so I may not actually be ill, in fact I am completely healthy, but I do believe I had a serious something and it must be brought to attention. I am quite sure that some day soon the February blues will be added to the book of legitimate illnesses and doctors will have a list of remedies to share to their patients. Since this is yet to be the case, you will instead get some lovin’ from Bella today.

For those of you reading this and wondering what the February Blues may be, let me explain to you. FB is a feeling that comes about in February (of course) when the excitement of the holidays have come to an end, the idea of playing in freshly fallen snow is no longer romanticized and you become tired of hibernating indoors and staring at grey skies wishing for warmer days. FB can often lead to you feeling discouraged and reflecting on how boring your life is, when in reality, it isn’t it’s just February.

This years case of FB hit me hard, being in a new city with a lot more serious winter weather than I’m used to, along with it being the first year of my true adult life aka. no longer on the pay roll of Bank Mama & Papa. I’ve resulted to staying indoors and saving my hard-earned dollars to save for my future-like a good adult should. This doesn’t normally lead me to the most lit Friday night but I know it won’t last forever.

Throughout this gloomy month of February I have come up with some creative ideas to keep you all looking up. I know that February is almost over, so you’re probably thinking heck, whats the use now? But hey, maybe its going to be a gloomy March- these tips can apply there, and if not, bookmark them for next year! #planahead

  1. Host a dinner party. Now some of you may already be x’ing the idea as you read because you think you can’t cook. Stop right there. Dinner parties can be soo fun and often can be less work than making a dinner for your own home. Break up the meal between your guests and ask everyone to pitch in. Someone brings a salad, someone brings a dessert, someone brings an appetizer and so on. You can even create a theme around the party. I once did a pizza night, and boy was it a hit! I made the dough and sauce and everyone attending had to bring two ingredients and a little something to quench their thirst (wine, wine and wine) This is a great activity to bring people together, it gives you and all you guests something to look forward and you wont have to worry about people not RSVPing because… its February.
  2. Plan a weekend getaway. Me and my boo have been holding off on our weekend getaway until we have truly hit the limit on our February Blues. Next weekend we are going to embrace the winter weather and head to the spa at the Spa & Hotel Le Finlandais. We are looking forward to some serious relaxation time, enjoying the warm outdoor baths and saunas- it will for sure cleanse us of all that February sadness. We were lucky enough to receive a gift voucher to enjoy the spa, but for those wanting to check it out yourself, the spa access passes are not too pricey. Before 10AM it will cost you $39, after 10Am it is $44. Included in the price is a bath robe, sandals and unlimited warm tea. Look forward to a post to hear all about my time at the spa!
  3. Learn something new. Since moving to a french city and being an anglophone, I have kinda been forced to study up on my french. I will be the first one to admit that learning a new language is hard and having to do the task, doesn’t make it any easier. But, the one positive point is that these are the months of yucky weather and not so fun times, so take advantage of it and read a new book, teach yourself to knit or even, like me, practise a new language. You won’t feel so bad because you aren’t missing out on any nice weather outside and it will feel good after with knowing that you have accomplished something rewarding.

I hope you all can take one of my remedies to cure your February Blues, just keep pushing the sun will come out again soon! I’d love to hear any other remedies you may have, feel free to share them with me below!

Stay positive and continue to do the things you love.

xx Bella

February Blues
February Blues

February Blues

February Blues

February Blues

Boots: Zara // Leather Pants: H&M // Coat: Vintage Silver Fox // Accessories: Rayban

Photography: Luu Huy Danh Vo

In LIFESTYLE on
February 15, 2016

music monday // volume 1.

workout motivation

At the start of the New Year, I became the person I thought I would never be. New year, new you, new me, blah blah. To get myself back on track in January, I joined the gym. I became a New Years resolutioner. The saddest part of it all is that I didn’t even realize what I was doing until it was done and was brought up in conversation. I had become like the rest of the world, starting up a gym membership with the mark of a new year. From the moment of realization of my actions, I made a promise to myself to keep with it, and not become the person that the hard core gym goers make fun of. You know, the people who start back up at the gym in the the new year and then about a month after, fall down the rabbit hole until next January.

With all my goals in mind, I have successfully made it past the one month mark since I signed up to the gym, with the idea of being a New Years Resolutioner always in the back of my head, I am motivated to stick to it and to prove this stereotype wrong.

Now that I’ve gotten used to the routine of working on my fitness, I can look forward to the hour or so I will spend kicking my butt and over perspiring. I will admit that it is not always easy. I sometimes feel like I have to throw myself down my apartment stairs and it takes a lot of pep talks from my inner cheerleader. But today I am going to share with you the secret to what makes it all so much easier.

I like to believe that my workout success is based 10% on girl power and 90% on the music I’m blasting into my ears, silencing any distraction around me. If each time I stepped on that treadmill and didn’t have new tunes to rock out to, I would constantly be thinking about how I hate treadmills, how I wish the sun was shinning and how excited I am to go home and eat popcorn, while laying horizontal on my couch. Instead, since I have these great tunes, I am thinking about how much of a beast I currently am, and crank up the speed on my treadmill.

Since today marks a new week, meaning back to the gym for me, and probably many of you as well, I will be sharing with my current top 5 tracks to enjoy your workout. You can thank me later 😉

 

  1. Hula Hoop – OMI
  2. Bang my Head – David Guetta ft. Sia & Fetty Wap
  3. Sorry (Latino Remix) – Justine Bieber ft. J Balvin

    4. I bet my Life- Imagine Dragons (Alex Adair Remix)

    5. Sparkling Eyes- MCD & Castaneda (Max Noguera Remix)

    Looking forward to hear all about how these tunes helped you work on your fitness. Have a great Monday!

XX Bella

In FASHION on
February 11, 2016

the v-word

Valentines Day

Roses are red

the sky is blue…

I hope you enjoy this post I’m writing for you.

So now you all know that I am not a poet. I mean, I did write that completely off the top of my head, so maybe if I put some effort into it I could come up with a better poem….. stay tuned for that! (maybe)

Now this posts comes along with some mixed feelings. I wasn’t sure If I was just going to completely avoid the topic or figure out how to write about it in a way that’s totally true to me.

Valentines. A day that is filled with many of the things that I (a quite feminine chica) should love.  Well you see, I do love these things, I am just on team different. I like to celebrate love in unique and personal ways. I mean, that’s the main inspiration behind this blog, sharing with you all the things I love. Not just one day of the year, but all 365 of them. Celebrating love to me is not through over priced flower bouquets and chocolate that looks more lovely than it tastes.  Don’t get me wrong, I do love me a bouquet of flowers from time to time but isn’t it much more beautiful when it’s so unexpected?

I receive a lot of love in my life on a daily basis from my main man. We really rule at assuring this is well-known and try our best to share as many loving gestures one possibly can in a day. As two individuals who are coming across this day for the first time as a couple, it was quite difficult to avoid the big V WORD. I can truly say that I avoided the talk for as long it was possible. I fought it hard. Walking fast passed the isles filled with shades of red and boxes of chocolate.

The talk only happened this past Monday so I think I did quite well, considering all v-day related objects land smack dab in your face pretty much right after the winter holidays.  You can’t walk into any store or down any street for that matter and not be surrounded with views of tacky teddy bears and red decor.

So when it came time to have the talk, I expressed to him how I’ve never really done much/ care to do much on this day. He claimed that it seems hard to believe because he knows I am a true romantic and have watched the Notebook over 15 times as well as seen every Nicholas Sparks flick to date (some also multiple times). When the talk was complete and our ideas were expressed- we resulted in agreeing to just sincerely spend the day together. This may seem confusing and you may be questioning what makes this special. Well, let me explain to you. What I mean when I say sincerely is totally present. No tv, no cell phones.. no distractions. True quality time. It’s crazy to think that this can be so difficult, and at this day and age it really is. I am the first one to admit that I am obsessed with my iPhone and spend way too many hours lurking through Instagram, double tapping photographs of people I don’t even know. It is so easy to get caught up in this day-to-day life and not really spend that quality time with the people who are living this day to day life with you.

So on Sunday February 14th, 2016- I will not be watching the new Nicholas Sparks flick while eating over priced chocolate, or following you on Instagram, and you can leave me a message on my voicemail. Instead, me and my man will be taking a walk around our neighbourhood, stopping in at the market to grab some supplies for the dinner that we will take time to make together (please hit me up with any recipe ideas you may have) and enjoy a nice bottle of red while we share some laughs and dream up ideas of the future (had to add in some cheese).

See I can be romantic- I am romantic!  I just like to do it in my own way. If any of you reading this are with me on this “feeling” about the V word then I suggest you brainstorm an idea of what you really like to do or wish you could do, and make it happen! If you don’t have a certain significant other to celebrate with then I suggest you do all said things with a friend who may need some lovin’. Or even just celebrate the love you have for yourself by treating yourself to something you wanted to try, like eating a bacon glazed doughnut that costs $7 from that trendy cafe down the street or watch a movie in the bath tub while downing a bottle of Chardonnay. No matter what you do, do it because you want to and not because everyone else is. And if you’re celebrating with yourself, then you rule because the love you have for you is the best and deepest love you can have. Stay true to you, y’all! And don’t forget to take advantage of all the yummy sale chocolate- I know I will.

valentines day

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

 

Coat: H&M Paris // Sweater: KENAR // Pants: zara // Hat: Maison Simons // Earmuffs: Rudsak

Photography: Luu Huy Danh Vo

happy love day to all.

xx Bella

In FASHION on
February 8, 2016

a very french hello

a very french hello

I have officially been living in a French city for half a year. Wow, I am just realizing that this is the first time I have actually calculated the amount of time that has passed since I’ve been here. Time really does fly – where did those six months go?

I’ve mentioned in some of my past posts that there have been quite a few changes that I have had to become comfortable with. Some things I was able to adapt to quite easily, such as the amount of wine an average Montrealer drinks (bottoms up!), and the amount of fine cheeses eaten on a weekly basis.  Ok ok, maybe this isn’t typical for all Montrealers, but the people I have been spending my time with sure live up to the French stereotype as they really enjoy their wine and cheese.

One thing, one simple gesture really, that I have been struggling with the most, I like to refer to as “the French hello”. As I still consider myself new to this city, I am constantly meeting new people on a daily basis, whether it’s through a social gathering or randomly bumping into people on the street when out with my man. Meeting someone new can be a tad uncomfortable in any situation, correct? Yes, no? Well, for me it can be.

As much as I consider myself a cool cat that can connect with anyone, I can be a noob in the beginning. Examples include: not being able to think of a decent conversation starter and going straight to the generic and ever so dreaded, “so what do you do for a living?” Who actually wants to be asked this question? I know I sure don’t.

Now, before you even progress to the point in the interaction in which you begin asking said person these dreadful questions, you must surpass step one from the handbook of meeting and greeting someone in Montreal.  Step one, the French hello: greeting with a kiss. Actually, not a kiss, not just one kiss, but two, one on each cheek, gracefully one after the other. Sounds quite simple, no? Well, let me tell you that after six months of living in this French city filled with many opportunities to perfect the French hello, I have yet to do so. I have spent months traveling and living in cities throughout Europe, where they also greet with kisses, and it seemed just fine back then. For some odd reason as soon as I am faced with knowing that I am about to have to greet someone new with a French hello, I choke. I become the noob that I can be and end up bumping faces with the other person, or going in too fast just to get it over with. Even worse – most embarrassing potential mishap of a French hello – when you both turn to kiss in the same direction and end up having to dodge the other person’s face so your lips don’t land smack dab on the other’s eye, ear or lips. Now, face all red, you must continue to stand there until the time comes to carry on with what you were doing prior to this extremely awkward hello.

Now this may all sound crazy to you, but I promise I am writing this from somewhere deep in my heart. The French hello is complex, and I am working hard each day to overcome this challenge. I dare you all to go out and try it yourself. Next person you meet, great them with a French hello and let me know how it goes for you. I’ll continue to keep you posted with my journey! Wish me luck.

a very french hello

a very french hello

Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset

a very french hello

a very french hello

Coat: Old Navy // Top & Trousers: Zara // Belt: DKNY // Shoes: Zara

Photography :: Luu Huy Danh Vo