My everyday jewelry

“As a Haitian, jewelry is an integral part of our core. In fact, there can only be two explanations for not wearing any jewelry at all: Either you’ve joined the extreme wing of some religious group or you’re in mourning.”

Kids ears tend to get pierced as early as one year old. Sometimes even sooner. In retrospect remembering that does make me smile considering a lot of people here don’t wear any type of jewelry at all. Although I must say in Montreal people tend to wear at least one piece of well-crafted jewelry since we are lucky enough to have a good amount of designers excelling in that field. So you could say not wearing any jewelry for me is against nature but I’ve been known to go without.

Below are a couple of shots of my go-to jewelry lately:

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Proof I’ve mastered my resting bitch face 🙂

Shot two

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Shot 4

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I am also definitely planning on spicing things up by piling on the bling a little bit more. We’ll see…:). Thank you for passing by and gros bisoux!

How to get some writing done when you don’t feel motivated

You can find my initial post here. I would like to revisit that post and add some more thoughts.

“Sometimes getting myself to do any kind of writing is like trying to get a kid to eat his vegetables. You have to find creative ways to get the job done. Sometimes he eats them whole but sometimes you have to puree it. Sometimes it takes 2 minutes and sometimes it takes the whole day. Some days you’re grateful if you can get a spoonful in and if you have to follow that kid around with that spoonful until he feels like it, then that’s what you’ll do. The most important thing is to get the job by any means necessary. The how doesn’t matter.”

  • Don’t give up on yourself: Be patient with yourself.

I recently had a revelation. I am at least 10 times more patient and forgiving with people close to me than with myself. Being a big proponent of self-love, that hit me hard. If I am not patient with myself: who will? I owe it to myself to be patient with myself in the race for meaning and accomplishment. The same way I have to get along with my boss (to some extent) if I want to keep my job, I need to be patient with myself if I want to last long enough to accomplish all of those things I have set my mind to. Therefore I have to make a conscious decision to extend to myself the same love, courtesy and kindness I so freely and gracefully extend to people who sometimes are not even worth an ounce of my time. This is definitely one thing I plan on working on.

2) Track your progress and action: Keep a list of all of your accomplishments

Nothing can motivate you as much as realizing how far you’ve come, how much you’ve accomplished. But for that to happen you need to keep track of all of your actions no matter how little. When you do get discouraged, because it’ll happen, all you have to do to get pumped up all over again is whip out that journal or that excel spreadsheet with the recording of all of your actions. It’ll serve as a breath of fresh air. 

3) Follow your natural curve of your excitement

Sometimes when we have things to accomplish, we tend to want to force ourselves to  observe a rigid schedule and forget to be watchful of those moments during the day where we seem clearly more motivated for a particular task.

As an example, I use to work on my novel early morning and I kept that schedule for a good while thinking to myself I was definitely a morning person. But lately I have been noticing that during lunch time I seem to have a burst of energy and excitement. I also tend to have another burst of excitement after working hours not a long one but enough to get some stuff done and make me feel like I’ve worked for myself that day. As a result of this observation I’ve switched up my writing routine a bit to work a minimum of ½ hour  on my novel during lunch time and another 40 minutes after work. If there seems to be moments when I feel particularly more inclined to work on something, I don’t question it, I just run with it.

4) Start with 2 to 5 minutes

There are days when I can’t seem to motivate myself to do any writing. In those cases which happen more often than I would care to admit, I just tell myself:”Fabienne, just do 6 stretches of 5 minutes of writing at a time until you totaled 30 minutes and give yourself the whole day to do that”. Once I totaled 30 minutes of writing I go and reward myself by watching an entire episode of Hercule Poirot.

Sometimes getting myself to do any kind of writing is like trying to get a kid to eat his vegetables. You have to find creative ways to get the job done. Sometimes he eats them whole but sometimes you have to puree it. Sometimes it takes 2 minutes and sometimes it takes the whole day. Some days you’re grateful if you can get a spoonful in and if you have to follow that kid around with that spoonful until he feels like it, then that’s what you’ll do. The most important thing is to get the job by any means necessary. The how doesn’t matter.

Thank you for passing by and gros bisoux!

Goal setting for 2019

“Staying the same has now officially become more painful than the actual act of changing:  I am proud to say I have exhausted my options as a loser. “

First of all, I thank God to have made it this far, almost the end of the year. I know I do sound like I am receiving an Oscar but getting to the end of 2018 truly does feel like receiving an Oscar indeed! Actually every day above ground deserves an Oscar:).

I am so excited for 2019, I started compiling a list of things I’d like to be more intentional about.

I know what you’re thinking: It’s not 2019 yet. I know but I just want to start taking a look at what I want to better for the coming year as 2018 draw to a close.

Year 2019: Theme

The theme of the year is ACTION, PROGRESS and TEAM WORK. I know what you’re thinking: My baby is all grown up now (insert tears emoji).

In 2019, I will move in pack. There’s power. Nobody gets left behind!

“Most of the times we plan with the higher self in mind and forget about our lower self-sabotaging self. We have a plan to do but we have no plan for when we refuse to do even after we swear we would do.”

Writing group

The older I get the more I realize the power of accountability, so many things we did growing up we simply owe to our parents being on our back 24/7 double checking on us. There is power in having someone to report to. Someone to makes us do what we want to do.

Barbara Sher said it best: “Isolation is a killer of dream”. Nothing can motivate you more than a group of people who are bent on making it and who refuse to give up on you. I’d like to build a network of people who writes and are even more serious with their writings as I am with mine. There’s a lot of motivation to be had in such groups. There truly is power in numbers. It keeps you motivated, focused and accountable.

Among things that are on my radar: QWF (Quebec writer’s federation) shut up and write sessions. These are intense writing sessions where writers of different levels and at different stages meet and write. I also want to set up other writing sessions with writer friends.which means I need more writer friends.

Progress tracking

I’d like to start tracking my actions/progress. A lot of time I get discouraged thinking I haven’t made any progress at all or very little because I have no record of my progress or actions. I want to change that, I want to be able to have a clear view of what I have accomplished as the year unfolds.

Accountability

Who’s going to make sure I do what I said I am going to do?

Most of the times we plan with the higher self in mind and forget about our lower self-sabotaging self. We have a plan to do but we have no plan for when we refuse to do even after we swear we would do. I suppose that’s what societies have laws : to make sure their citizens do what they swear they’re going to do.

Why am I doing all this? Why all this motivation all of a sudden? What has changed? Don’t get me wrong, changing is still very much painful. It is just that staying the same has now officially become more painful than the actual act of changing. I also feel like I have exhausted my options as a loser. I honestly didn’t think it was possible but yet, here we are. Looking back you’d think I was trying to earn an Oscar. Also I feel like my belief as a writer has somehow solidified a bit more. One thing for sure :I want to do. I want concrete and tangible progress.

Next week I am planning on going into more details wit h tools and other bits of planning I want to add to my arsenal. Gros bisoux and thank you for passing by:)

What makes for a satisfied and memorable meal: Writing about food using all your senses.

I recently signed up for a food writing class and it’s been a blast! Lately I’ve been trying to spice up my writing and attack the whole process from a different angle which is why I’ve specifically signed up for the class. Here is an excerpt of the class introduction on the QWF (Quebec writer’s federation) site:

“But it isn’t just what’s on our plates that we write about when we write about food. As the famous American food writer M.F.K. Fisher once wrote: “It seems to me our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it… and it is all one.” 

As a first  generation immigrant, food is a way for me to carry a bit of my culture’s ADN with me wherever  I go and being able to hopefully pass some of it down to my children some day. I am Haitian and the surest way to kill me is to prevent me from eating rice or all sort of grain for that matter. You do that and you’ll have my death on your conscience :). I was raised on grains, healthy grains that is. I have been eating that stuff since I was a baby! In fact, in Haiti, we don’t really have food specifically dedicated to babies, except for the occasional Gerber baby pot which is not used that often. Our version of baby food is usually a mash version of adult food except that it’s packed with a lot more food designed to fortify and nourish like spinach, carrots, bananas, beans, plantains, etc.,. All of this is introduced as soon as the doctor allows solid food.

“Food is not just about fuel and sustenance. It’s about people and places and the history behind those people and places. It’s about a mood, a specific time and place coupled with a specific emotion…”

Throughout the class, one question that keeps coming up time and time again is: What makes for a happy, satisfied and memorable meal? Is it the people we share it with? the emotions and memories it evokes long after the experience is gone? Is it a specific time and place? I am inclined to think it is all of the above.  Food can carry so much memories, so much meaning fueled with faces and places and emotions. In class, we are encouraged to use all of our senses when writing a piece of food review.

Our third class was about food photography. For this class, our teacher prepared a tray full of all kinds of sins worthy of a game of throne gathering. Here is a pic below. It is not one of my best because we were pressed for time and my phone was dying:

Mood: “A lazy Friday night in with sex on the menu and possibly a few episodes of Game of thrones…”

Taste: “This bread right here tasted like the first day of Spring after a long harsh winter…” and yes I am on a low-carb diet 🙂

I came to this class to better my writing and instead it’s been like a trip down memory lane and a reminder of my roots. Our exchange in class makes me realize food is one of the few small pleasures we can all enjoy to some degree. A way to make life more full and happy. Since starting the class, I try to be more appreciative of what I eat and enjoy it a bit more more and not rush it. I am also happy to report writing scenes demanding a  great deal of description  in my novel has gotten a lot better and easier. I now feel like I have the right tools to progress in the right direction.

Thank you for passing by and don’t forget to comment, like or share this article. Gros bisoux!

 

 

 

What returning to work feels like after one week of vacay

“It literally felt like drinking cod liver oil on an empty stomach.”

Before you ask yourself what all the drama is about, I urge you to remember that being a Libra, I am the queen of drama :). Give me five minute by a window and a good cup of tea and I can convince myself I am the queen of England.

Today I returned to work after a sweet, sweet, week off. It literally felt like drinking cod liver oil on an empty stomach. I was starting to enjoy having full 24-hour days all to myself. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy the people I work  with and my work too, to some extent, because I am extremely good at it but it was hard. I felt like I was just starting to relax a little and then it was all over 🙂

But then once I got there and got to mingle with my co-workers once again, it felt like home. I realized these are really nice people and it felt good to get back in the swings of things.

So to cheer myself up, I decided to do my favorite version of a happy color combination with a red turtleneck and big thick hoops in a bright metal.

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I wish I had a couple of good pics of the whole outfit but dear husband was starting to show teeth and gums (read not happy) after the 15th :”Let’s try this again, honey”. Mind you, it was after a long day at home nursing the beginning of a cold. I know what you’re thinking: “Asking a sick man to snap pics of you, how cruel!” I must admit my higher self was cringing but my vain lower self got the best of me. I have a shoot scheduled in the beginning of November so all is well. I am also thinking of setting up a home studio to start practicing my photography skills. We’ll see!

All in all, I am happy to have a job to return to. I just wish I could write this with more conviction though 🙂

Thank you for passing by. 🙂 Don”t forget to like, comment or share any writing piece on this space to your heart’s content :). Have a wonderful week my lovely friends:)

It is my birthday week!!!!!

“When life hands you a lemon, don’t make lemonades, find good lighting and take a selfie!”

The day I took these selfies, I went for some vaccine and receive quite a bit of disappointing news. I was discouraged. While I was sitting in the health clinic waiting room I noticed my particular corner was literally flooded with the most amazing light. I felt like I was sitting under the glow of a 1,000 candle lights. My vain little self immediately took over and before I knew it I was pouting and posing as if my life depended on it. At some point I even stood up trying to get a better angle of my accessories. The poor man sitting across from me looked very worried. He was probably asking himself if he should call out one of the nurses 🙂

I thank God everyday for my vain self!

Last year I turned 40 . I felt like a bitten human being turning into a vampire for the first time. This October I turned 41. Forty-one. Can’t believe I am already 41! Of course, I look nothing like it people, let it be said and pondered and remembered 🙂  I have no words of wisdom except “Do what works for you and stay pretty”.

“We are all going to age no matter how many collagen masks we do.”

 I am grateful. Yes I am! No matter how many times I have ranted about the fact that I am getting older. Now more than ever I do realize lots of people would have liked to be alive today celebrating another milestone. But they are not because life decided otherwise. Still, sometimes ungratefulness kicks in and I forget all about it 🙂

Celebrating my birthday also means that Fall is here to stay. Yes to hot drinks and Netflix marathon with my main squeeze (only squeeze, really)! And most importantly: Christmas is around the corner so I can start listening to Christmas music 🙂

Thank you for passing by 🙂

 

 

 

 

Timeless Summer outfit: The Not your everyday white tee

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“This ensemble screams boss lady who can’t seem to switch off even for a Saturday brunch with friends”

Can you tell I refuse to let go of Summer? Fall has settled in quietly but surely here in Montreal but yet here I am parading in a simple tee and long skirt. Don’t get me wrong, I love Fall, it’s just that I like to get a full Summer before I get to enjoy Fall. Summer was so shy here: Some days it’s nice, some days it’s raining and some days it’s windy (insert “why me” emoji here). Anyways as a proper goodbye to Summer, I thought I’d do a last timeless basic kind of outfit post.

I can’t live without tees especially white ones. The trick not to get bored is to focus on small details. I especially like the shoe-like lacing at the front of this one.

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Tees are for every season: you can wear them in Summer, Fall and even Winter under a nice biker or denim jacket and some denim bottom or layered over a thin turtleneck. The thing is to pick them in various sizes and in materials of various degree of thickness and warmth depending on what you’re planning on wearing them with. I usually get my size plus a larger one that I can wear over a thin turtle neck for Fall and Winter.

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So that’s it for today, dear friends! Thank you so much for passing by and if you enjoy this post, feel free to like, comment and subscribe. Gros bisoux and talk next week 🙂

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Bisous !