2019, Community and Values

Happy New Year!

I know, I know: it’s January 23, so I’m a wee bit late. I don’t know about you but January has just passed by without me noticing. What have I been up to?

New year, new possibilities; New day, new opportunities!

Well, I’ve started my second term as a kinesiology student, enjoyed (?) many snowstorms (it’s currently snowing like crazy as I type this), felt cold temperatures that shouldn’t be legal, and tried to breathe and stay relaxed through it all.

Spoiling my plants to Beardbangs planters!


I’ve also rekindled with my love of plants and have a few new plants to call my own. I’m trying out the once-famous Pilea and loving my Pothos and Prayer plants way too much. It’s been so relaxing taking care of our plants, re-potting them, dusting them, fussing over how slow or how quickly they are growing… I’ve even started a plant journal to keep track of all their progress and see what works best. It really has been my relaxation practice of the month. Maybe it’s because of all the cold and snow, but connecting with greenery has been so therapeutic!

One of my baby Pilea!

What about food? Well, I’ve been trying to keep up with eating all the greens and making sure to drink all the water. I’ve also started to take a vitamin D supplement, and I can’t say I’ve noticed any difference. However, I know I’m not getting any sunlight as I’m waking up before the sun and coming out of uni after sunset. As my uni doesn’t have any windows in the classrooms, I’m starting to believe that the sun is as mystical as unicorns. So, a vitamin D supplement makes sense for me at the moment.

A few weeks ago, Bonny Rebecca, one of my favourite vegan Youtubers, made a video about not being vegan anymore for health reasons. I felt for her and admired her courage for “coming out”. For her to be honest about this when she has built her entire brand around veganism must have taken so much bravery and guts. Yet, soon enough, the online vegan community came up with many response videos bashing her and calling out on her integrity, questioning her “level of veganism”, some even saying that she was never really vegan. Others even said that they would never give up on veganism, no matter how terrible the health consequences might be.


After seeing all of this, I felt so ashamed. Ashamed because I spent years calling myself a vegan, supporting the diet and lifestyle, believing that it was the one and only answer to all of mankind’s problems. Mostly, I felt ashamed of the community. How can I call myself a vegan, when other vegans are so plain mean and disrespectful? For me, compassion is the driving force behind my diet change. What would it say about me if I couldn’t spread this compassion to a young woman going through health problems? I’m in no position to judge, criticize or assume anything on her life. It is not my place, and it is nobody’s place. So what’s up vegan community? Are our egos so big that we have forgotten that we are dealing with actual humans? Is the chase for recognition, views and clicks overshadowing basic respect? That’s not the community I want to be a part of.

It would be hypocritical to say that I’ve never had slip ups or that I never crave butter or eggs. I find myself asking: what is really important? To be perfect or to do my best? I choose to do my best. Nobody can live up to the pressure of trying to be perfect 100% of the time. You just try your best and maybe even enjoy the process. It goes for veganism, and all aspects of life!

Beautiful scones of my heart…

As I came back to uni, in a completely new field, I’ve felt a lot of pressure and stress: Am I good enough? Am I fit enough? Am I young enough? Is my brain still capable of studying? Are they going to judge my body? Will I make friends? Will any of my former students be in my classes?

These questions and many more started to take all the space in my mind, and I was struggling with levels of anxiety that I had never experienced before. At my lowest, I realized that I was putting all this pressure on my own shoulders. Nobody but me cared! For all I know, all the other students in my program ask themselves the same questions… and all I can do is offer my best effort. That is more than enough.

This change of perspective came like a sweet wave of relief. All of a sudden, it was okay for me to relax and not work all the time; it was okay for me to eat chocolate and not feel guilty; it was okay for me to skip a workout when I was feeling exhausted; it was okay for me to go out with my boyfriend and have a cookie even if it wasn’t a vegan. It was okay for me to simply experience and live.

So, this is what I want to bring to the blog. Tips and tricks to help you cope with anxiety, plant love, plant-based recipes, vegetarian recipes, exercises, books, teas and cats! I want my blog to be a warm and safe space where I can share posts that will make you feel warm and safe. I’m not striving for perfection anymore: I’m striving for a full life that I can sustainably live. And that is more than enough.

Hoping that you will all join me,


Oh, and I’ve also started taking horseback riding lessons! It brings me so much peace, and it’s such a blast working with these wonderful animals.

Spice Girls and Feminism

Some time ago, I was listening to the radio when a journalist explained how growing up with the Spice Girls made her a feminist without knowing it. This resonated with me as I was obsessed with Ginger Spice and collected everything I could get from the band (I still have a pretty complete collection of mood-colour-changing Spice Girls rings!). It got me thinking about the girls band and what it taught me.

Image result for spicegirls

1) You don’t have to dress in pink and be cute to be a girl… unless that’s your thing. What I loved most about these girls was that in my 8 years old mind, they were so authenticly and unapologetically themselves. They all had strong, independent and different personnas that you could relate or aspire to, and that was part of their feminimity. Being Scary Spice did not make her any less woman, just as being Sporty Spice didn’t make her a boy. The Spice Girls offered young me with different options as how to be a girl and a woman, something that was particularly rare yet so important.

2) Girls could do anything. Fast forward to the Spice Girl movie, Spice World: granted, this is probably one of the worst film ever made in all kinds of ways. Yet, it showed my favourite girls doing all sorts of things, crushing a bad guy, meeting aliens and rocking a super show. These girls were unstopable, extremely energetic and so alive. It taught young me that there were no limits.

3) Female friendship, when truly found, is a sacred thing. The Spice Girls were so incredible because they stuck together and seemed to really be BFFs. I was devastated when they separated because their friendship seemed so undestructible. Through their friendship they conquered the world and were even big in Japan. Growing up, I longed for this type of friendship. Honestly, I’m still longing for it and all the support it implies.

So, in a nutshell, yes, the Spice Girls and what they represented in my young mind totally had a feminist effect on my upbringing. Theirs was the first CD I ever had, and I felt so grown-up listening to it on my parents’ stereo. Their music is still helping me rock interval training sessions and dance in my pyjamas when I need a quick happiness boost. A big thank you to this legendary formation. BTW, I’m still waiting for a second last reunion tour.


2016/2017 Tag!

I few weeks ago, I was tagged by Jen from the blog GypsyBus28 to do the 2016-2017 tag. How fun! Go check out her blog for beautiful recipes and fun reviews. I have to say this tag asks really hard questions, but I guess that makes it a useful reflection tool.

The tag was created by David from The Guy Who Said Always No.




Busy, change, priorities


Well, I can’t pinpoint two people, but I can pinpoint two categories of people. I think that’s okay! I really relied on these people for moral support and also inspiration and courage. As 2016 was a real transition year, I really needed that!

My support system: my boyfriend and my parents

My inspiration: Anna,  from The Anna Edit as my favourite blogger/youtuber and Angelia Trinidad, founder of The Passion Planner.


Last February, my boyfriend treated us to a week-end in Sutton, Québec. We got to stay in a pod in the middle of the trees. The setting was magical.


Hum, that’s a really hard question! I think I’ll have to go with a new food discovery that I did last summer at the market with iceplant.


Deciding to take a break from teaching was definitively the most important event of my year. I’m still dealing with this. I’m still not sure where I’m headed, but I think it was a good decision.


My essential oil diffuser! I love this object so much because it enables me to change the atmosphere of any room instantly. It was really handy over the holidays to create a Christmasy feel, and I use it daily to freshen the air in my office. Completely in love with this!


  1. Sleep more
  2. Create more
  3. Spend more time with my friends and family


I would love to go to Italy or Iceland.


I don’t have anything specific, but I really hope to discover new variety of fruits and vegetables to try out this year.

The wonderful people I would like to tag are:


  • Mention the creator of the tag: The Guy Who Said Always No.
  • Use the image that you find in this article
  • Mention the blogger who has chosen you: Jen, from GypsyBus28
  • Answer the questions
  • Mention 9 bloggers/friends and let them know through a comment on their blog.

Go check out Go Study Annie!

When you are working on a blog or on an Instagram account and trying to build an audience, each milestone is important. Every new subscriber or follower is a personal victory. Well, my cousin has recently reached 50 followers on her instagram Go Studie Annie. Congrats Annie! To celebrate, she suggested that we did a Q+A collab. So, we exchanged questions and here we go! You’ll be able to check out the interview she did for me on her blog.  Before you get to read her answers, I’d like to introduce her a little bit. Annie is probably the most resilient person I know. She lives with very serious health issues, but she always stays positive and curious about everything. I’m extra proud to see where she is now and can’t wait to see where she will be in the future. She is a true model of courage and perseverance to me, and my only regret is that we live so far apart. I really hope we’ll be closer in the future to make exciting blog posts, go journal shopping and practice yoga together. So, without further ado, let’s get on the fun stuff: her interview!


1. How did you get into bullet journaling? What do you like about it?


Well you see, I have always watched a few YouTubers to gather some information of how the system evolved with time for them and read a few blog posts as well. I would watch Kara from Boho.Berry and read a few posts from Anne, my cousin on MyLightHeartedKitchen! I loved how she incorporated recipes of her’s into one page and then adding  a to-do list into her weekly spreads. Anne sparked my interest one day from her post and I just HAD to get my hands on one of my notebooks and try it for myself!

2. What pages always come back in your bullet journal?


I LOVE to listen to music. When I have a favorite song on the radio, I would ask Siri “What song is this?” and then take a screenshot of her answers. This took up so MUCH room on my phone, so I decided to a “Song Title” section not too long ago! Hmm, maybe I should turn this into a page, don’t you think?


3. What pages were introduced, but ended up being unused?


Ahh, this is a good question!  To be honest, I am still in progress of evolving my bullet journal to fit my needs. I tried to work in blocks for my monthly and weekly, but that never worked for me. I’m actually keeping these pages as a simple list now! Another thing that I have tried with my bullet journal is the page tracker. Honestly, I only added in this page because of the designs that people made with their tracker.

4. What are your top 5 studying tips for other students?


I am NO professional advisor, but here’s what I would recommend for students:

  1. NEVER ever turn work in late.
  2. DO NOT be shy when it comes to asking questions.
  3. ALWAYS remember, if you can work on your favorite hobby for long hours, you CAN study for long hours. Never give up!
  4. Study in SMALL groups. No, not big groups. You’ll lose your focus on studying and venture into something else so easily.
  5. TRY YOUR BEST TO NOT PROCRASTINATE, trust me, it’ll save you time and energy!

5. What are your top 3 motivational tips for students?



Put your phone on silent,  don’t forget the “Do not disturb button” as well, or hide it if you have to! If you’re feeling lazy that day, put on some tunes that correspond with the subject you’re studying for! And my number one motivational tip for students would have to be, NEVER GIVE UP. Cliché, I know, but think back to why and who you’re doing this for.


6. What do you like about yoga?


I actually have been enjoying yoga from the moment I was introduced to it! Yoga is a way for me to massage my back and neck while exercising. Yoga also helps me deal with the weight on my shoulders. Another great tool from yoga is that it creates a break time for me while studying! We all need a break once in awhile, right?

7. Do you see yourself practicing yoga for a long time? Why?


Yes! Yes I do :D. I love how yoga works with my back muscles. Yoga has been helping with my neck lately as well! You see, I had back problems a while back and am still affected by the weather. Yoga helps me to relax my neck and back muscles just a little more when I need it to.

8. What’s your favourite hobby?


Oooh, my favorite hobby. I love crocheting and knitting. I have become one with the needles actually :P.

9. What inspired you to pursue this hobby?


I love the reaction that I get in return when I send off my gift(s) to the person. I see pure joy in their smile and that always makes me happy. There’s nothing that makes me happier than seeing someone smile <3.

10. Who’s your favourite youtuber?


Hehe, I could go on AND on with this one! I have so many that I love watching right now, but I’ll cut the list down to three. For now, I am watching LustreLux, Chrillsims3, and Bubzvlogz. These three always entertain me with their work of art! I sometimes watch Lustrelux for her beauty tips (which I can never accomplish), Chrillsims3 for his interesting story lines in The Sims, and of course, Bubzvlogz for her adventurous life with her little family.  

So, I hope you enjoyed reading her interview. You can visit her blog to read mine. While you’re there, say hi to her! You can also find us on Instagram @gostudieannie and @mylightheartedkitchen if you’d like more daily musings. Finally, let me know if you’d like me to do a Q+A post with your questions!


Relaxing Tea and workshop update!

Today was such an exciting day! If you follow me on Facebook, you have seen that I organized a workshop that happened tonight. I was really nervous that no one would show up, but 20 people came, and they were the best people I could have hoped for for my first vegan workshop. I seriously had a lot of fun discussing nutrition and meal planning with everyone who participated. Thank you so much!



Thank you so much for participating in my workshop! It was great meeting you all!


So now that I’m home, I’m looking forward to enjoying a nice cup of herbal tea and reflect on this wonderful evening. Here is one of my mom’s favourite: Three Gingers by Pukka. We love Pukka teas: the packaging in itself is just so ridiculously beautiful, it’s a great reason to get those pretty boxes. The flavours are also so authentic and fresh. This one is a mix of ginger, galengal and turmeric: perfect for when you have a cold, ate too much, or just feel like something soothing and exotic.


Give this a try if you have a chance! I’ll be posting some pretty exciting recipes by the end of the week, so stay tuned. I’ve been really busy these few days, but things should be back on track in the next few days. Again, thank you for you support and for reading this blog! Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude!

Life Update + Giveaway Winner

We moved! For the first time ever in my life, we’ll be living in a house. So far, I’ve lived in six different apartments, so it’s exciting to have a little house. It’s so nice to have a little garden where we’ll be able to set up a vegetable patch, grow some flowers and add a birth bath and feeder. It’s also amazing to be able to have breakfast outside. It’s so peaceful and relaxing, it’s the perfect way to start the day. I feel really lucky to have this new space to play with and enjoy.



I’m a sad cat, living in a sad box. She stayed in that box the entire time we were packing up.


The move is even more exciting because we left the city! That’s right, we are not in Montreal anymore, but in a small, small town. Everything is so cute and unfamiliar. It’s a great feeling to have new places to discover; it’s like a holiday. Plus, our new home is set in the most wonderful place if you like being outside: bike and hiking trails are just around the corner, and we have a ski station literally in our backyard. It’s really nice because when we go outside, we can see people running, biking or just walking around. It’s such a nice quiet small town. The feel is so different from the big city, but I think I’ll get used to it pretty easily. That is if I don’t break down from unpacking everything! I’m so tired of lifting and moving boxes around. The temperatures are really not helping: it’s so hot and humid, even just sitting down seems like an effort.



Why are you doing this to me? In a far away kingdom, lived a cat that spent its time perched on the highest of all boxes…


Our cat is going crazy! She is exploring every little nook and cranny and wondering what she’s doing there. She’s also quite excited to see all the birds and insects that are going back and forth in the yard. She’s not too happy to see the boxes disappear, but we truly are!



Okay, life not’s so bad here!


Speaking of boxes, I’m happy to announce that Melissa from Working Mom Musings  is the winner of the Manitoba’s Harvest Hemp Hearts! I hope you enjoy your prize! Thank you all for participating and giving me and others such wonderful ideas as to how to use hemp hearts. I’m currently working on other giveaways, so keep your eyes open!


Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 8.44.45 AM

You can’t see them all, but everyone’s name was entered 🙂


Sunshine Blogger Award!

A few days ago, I was nominated by My Vegan Dairy for the Sunshine Blogger Award! How fun! If you haven’t visited this blog, you should go over there if you are looking for yummy and beautiful vegan recipes. I love how simple and wholesome her recipes are. Seriously, they all look incredibly delicious!


It’s so much fun to receive an award from a fellow blogger. Blogging is great because it enables me to share my passion for food with the world, and I love getting messages and comments from people all over the world. I love the sense of community that blogging creates! It’s great to be recognized by other bloggers for the work that I do here. It’s the best feeling! Thank you for giving me this award!

I was really excited about this award because it’s part award, part tag. Here are the rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the eleven questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate eleven blogs to receive the award and write them eleven new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or your blog.

Here are 11 blogs I think are making the internet a better place. They make my days better and I love reading their recipes, checking out their amazing pictures or travel stories. Go check them out! They are all equal in my mind, so don’t focus on the order:

Now, this is cool! Here are My Vegan Dairy’s questions and my answers!

  1. How do you generally relax or unwind? 
    • I love yoga! It’s relaxing, energizing and it gets my mind out of my head and back in my body for a “right here, right now” moment. If I’m feeling like a complete larva, I also like to cuddle up with some tea and a nice book.
  2. Your take on self motivation?
    • Self motivation is really important! I find that I never perform as well as when I’m truly intrinsically motivated to do something. If it doesn’t come from me, I won’t do a good job. So, the key to being motivated for me is to find something I like doing.
  3. Bake or Cook?
    • Both!
  4. In food, what best describes your weakness?
    • Frying stuff up. As a kid, my mom terrorized me with nightmarish stories about what would happen to me if I tried frying stuff on my own. Still can’t do it. That’s how you make your kid a healthy eater!
  5. Favorite author?
    • I’m completely obsessed with Kate Morton at the moment. I finished reading The Lake House this week, and I can’t get it out of my head. I love that her stories take part in England and are so mysterious. I really enjoyed The Forgotten Garden as well. It’s one of my favourite book.
  6. What in a daily routine bores you?
    • I don’t think I have a daily routine that bores me. I like to change things quite often even if it’s small things like switching shampoos or holding my toothbrush with the wrong hand. Variety is key to avoid boredom!
  7. What is the one thing you would want to do to make the world a better place?
    • To make the world a better place, I would ensure that every kid gets access to primary and secondary education. I think quality, non-confessional education is the key to building strong, confident and reasonable individuals that can then evolve to be assets in their communities. Education is the most important thing you can give a kid, and it should be a given that everyone has access to it. Having every kid in school would also end child labor and child marriage which are two issues that make me really sad and revolted.
  8. Do you have a sweet tooth?
    • That’s the only kind of teeth I have! My life would be so sad without chocolate!
  9. How important is your tea and coffee time to you?
    • Very important. Seriously, my tea collection is borderline pathological. I love to sit and drink a nice cup of tea. It gives me time to think, and it helps me stay focused if I’m working.
  10. On a rainy day, what would you ideally do?
    • Cuddle up in bed with a cup of tea and a good movie with my boyfriend, my cat and my knitting.
  11. Best vacation so far?
    • My one-month road trip I did a few years ago in France with my boyfriend. It was the best feeling to discover new places and to wake-up in a different place every day. I was amazed by the variety and richness of this country. And don’t get me started on the food.
  12. What is the one thing you would want to change in you?
    • I would love to be able to fly. Wouldn’t that be great?

Finally, here are my questions for the amazing blogs mentioned above.

  1. What do you usually eat for breakfast?
  2. What is one thing you can’t live without?
  3. What is your favourite herb or spice?
  4. What is one thing your are proud about?
  5. What is one thing you feel lucky about?
  6. If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
  7. What would a perfect day be like for you?
  8. What is your best childhood memory?
  9. If you would visit any city in the world, which one would it be? Why?
  10. What is your favourite daily routine?
  11. Who is your role model? Why?

I can’t wait to hear your answers!

I’m a mindfulness instructor!

I feel like I have reached a new level in “hippie-land”!

Joke aside, I have completed my 12 weeks training with Mindful Schools to be a mindfulness instructor this week. How exciting! As an end of training celebration, I’m sharing some thoughts on how this happened.


Flashback to the beginning of the year: This year, I have been assigned with six groups of 30 to 38 students. I know most of them as I taught them last year too, and I know that many of them have a great potential that is hindered by their anxiety, stress, or strong feelings/emotions.  This is my problem because it makes it difficult for students to learn when their minds are busy processing all kinds of thoughts. It is also a personal problem because teaching is hard! You are dealing with so much more than the curriculum: student meltdowns, administrators, parents, and taking all this personal stress at home because you care for the kids in front of you. Add this to regular-human-being stress, and you are pushed off balance on a daily basis. So, this beginning of the year is hard, and I feel resource-less.

Meeting with Charity Bryant: At a teacher conference, I get to meet Charity Bryant who is a mindfulness instructor who started out as an English teacher. Her presentation is inspiring, and I feel like she is describing my students when she tells us about her own students and experience bringing mindfulness in the classroom. I need to know more so I write to her ,and she tells me about the online training given by Mindful Schools.

Training with Mindful Schools: I start with the six weeks mindfulness fundamentals and follow through with the mindful educator course. I feel very lucky to have received a scholarship because this training is very complete and thorough, but would have been inaccessible to me as I’m paying it on my own.   Not only does this training help my students, it also helps me face difficulties and deal with my emotions better. Things are still hard sometimes, but I feel like I have a better tool set to face them.

Introducting mindfulness at school: To give me courage, I start offering a mindfulness workshop once every two weeks for interested students. As the meetings go by, I gather experience and confidence with this ideal group. I then introduce mindfulness as a daily routine to my different groups. I am amazed by the curiosity and willingness to try that my students are showing. Most importantly, I feel that my most difficult, disturbing students are responding to this very positively. I also welcome their suspicious as to this “voodoo stuff” and discuss research and brain functioning with them. I really like how it creates an open, ready-to-learn environment where the students are taking time to slow down and connect before starting to work. Is it time lost? Not really. Since they are relaxed and available, I don’t need to bring them back to the activities as much, instructions and modelling take less time because their attention is there, and I can tap in to their new capacity to pay attention with a shared and understood vocabulary.

The results of implementing mindfulness in my classroom might sound magical and untrue. And yet, they are real. My students are still teenagers, but somehow, they are more focused, calmer and more available to learning, to their peers and to my interventions. I really love our 15 minutes of practice each class because it gives me a chance to teach them something out of the curriculum that is precious and truly helpful. I am really glad to have done this! Let me know what you think!



Two Peas in a Pod


This week was our 5 year anniversary. My great boyfriend had made reservations for us at Le Domaine du Diable Vert, which is a  wonderful site in the Eastern Townships where you can rent different size cabins and pods. Only two hours away from Montreal, this “mountain resort” is near Sutton.


Pods are really fun one-room cabins equipped with a wood stove and possessing an amazing bay window.


Because they are so small, they can be installed practically anywhere, and they make you feel like you are completely alone and secluded, while still remaining toasty. Speaking of toasty, we realized that we were complete novices when it came to wood stoves: we succeeded in creating a blazing hot atmosphere into which it was impossible to sleep, let alone think, while not being able to boil water on top of said-stove. Quite talentuous people we are.

Anyways, the whole point of this week-end in the “wilderness” was not to stay in and boil water, so we went out and did some hiking and some snowshoeing in the wonderful setting. Here are a few pictures to make you jealous:

As you can maybe make it out for the pictures, the Diable Vert has an amazing view on different mounts. It is always breathtaking to get up there and to see the open space, which is not what you would expect from the road.

Overall, a great week-end away from the city!


Family Friendly Daddy Blog- Featuring me!

I can’t believe how exciting this is! Seriously, totally changing my views on today: it’s also parent-teacher night, and as a teacher, those are quite exhausting especially after a full day of teaching: 12 hour workday, here I come!

Me inside today!

A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon Family Friendly Daddy Blog which is a very nice and happy place where a dad shares tips and tricks, thoughts and stories about being a dad, vegan, and many other fun things (movie reviews are really useful!). The particular post that hooked me in was a call for submissions.

So I wrote a post and sent pictures, and I’m featured! Please go check it out as this article tells you a little bit more about my vegan journey now that it is past my 2 year milestone.

Enjoy! 🙂