Wednesday, December 31, 2014

{Goodbye 2014 - Reflections of the Year}

. . . . . . . . . . 
{life reflections}
 Weekly thoughts and rambles. A glimpse into my mind and world. 
Entries that I might jot down in my Happy Diary; the release of thoughts to flow uninhibited. Reflections from the soul. 
Reflections of life.  

I hope to leave you inspired. 
If you want to share your own reflections of the week please leave a link to your "life reflections" entry in the comments for all to find and see.
. . . . . . . . . .

Goodbye 2014 - Reflections of the Year

Wow! We’ve already reached the end of 2014! What a year! As I sit here in my new little apartment, my eyes glancing to the large painting my boyfriend made me for my birthday, with my kitty on my lap, and the twinkle lights strung about the walls giving my creative space a cozy, moody feel, I can’t help smile. So much of my life is so immensely different from December of last year. The end of 2013 was a very bumpy road, as I previously blogged about. The feeling this year feels much much different. A feeling of fulfillment, excitement, and bliss sing in my heart with a very happy song. 
What a year indeed! 
To start upon this reflection, we can all be thankful we survived Mercury in Retrograde! What a ride that was for most people I know. I remember watching couple after couple breaking up—some of these were short-lived relationships, some of them fifteen-year marriages—but they collected one by one until over twenty people I knew had ended their relationships. I remember watching this domino effect, wondering when my turn would be. It was a feeling of mixed emotions, of relief and of fear. My turn certainly came—which has been no secret to my readers, starting with a rather large handful of blog posts that began in July. Because of this, and because of many other things, 2014 has been a year so divided in black and white that it still amazes me.  
As I made my cheesy “year in review” (like so many others) on Facebook, it only felt right to conclude that: as far as I was concerned, 2014 began in May. As I allow my fingers to roll over my keyboard with flowing thoughts, I can’t help realize that the first several months of 2014, however, were vital and necessary for the greatness that was to follow. Light cannot come without darkness. Breakthroughs don’t often come without turbulence, and happiness doesn’t come without first realizing what isn’t right in your life. So, the first half of 2014 was one of self-discovery, of getting honest with myself, of waging the war in my mind of what I really Wanted and Needed in order to enter a better phase of my life. I’ve spoken before about the vows I made myself in March, of the intentions I set, of the general turbulence of my own emotions. Although, thinking back, the first half of the year was truly an emotional struggle, there is no way I cannot be immensely grateful for it. Timing was everything, and I couldn’t be happier with how the wheel of time, and my own resolve and determination, unfolded my new life. It was all necessary. 
When the flower blossomed, it was all the more sweet and reassuring. Getting honest and clear with myself was such a blessing. Although I would have gladly gone without the immense heartache, it was all part of the process. New love has been such an eye-opening, warm, fuzzy, fulfilling change. If any more gratitude filled my heart, it might explode. There was plenty of cleansing, clearing, and healing of relationships in general this second half of the year; all of which have made this year all the more magnificent. 
Conclusion? 2014 was undoubtedly one of the greatest years of my life—even if the “great” part was felt mid-year. It has also been, undoubtedly, one of the hardest years of my life on an emotional level, and in relationships that extend beyond my love life. I learned a lot about myself, about what I wanted, about what I didn’t want; about what Made me Happy, and what made me not so happy; about what was blocking my personal growth, and about how to heal myself; about what was going wrong, and what was going right. I also learned a lot about Love; in various relationships and various forms, about not settling, and about being Deserving and Worthy of good things.

I look forward to emptying my “Jar of Happiness” once the clocks turn over into a brand new year as well; but that will be a separate post as it was the year before. For now, I will say that each year is a gift, filled with profound opportunities for growth and enlightenment. If there was one lesson that was most significant this year, it would be to Listen to your Heart. And I mean truly truly listen. The Heart Knows. Be honest with yourself, believe you are worth Happiness and Goodness, and good things will surely follow. 
Myself? I am extremely excited for 2015—and this year it’s not because I want the last year to end, but because I feel so blissful in my current state of affairs that it excites me of what’s to follow. 

So, here I am wishing you all a very Happy (and safe!) New Year’s Eve and a brilliant best New Year! 


If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

{this moment} - and the weekly {Smile-Up}

. . . . . . . . . . 
"There are no ordinary moments." ~Way of the Peaceful Warrior

{no ordinary moments} - Photos capturing moments from the week. Simple, special, extraordinary moments.
 -  using Daily Gratitude to see the world as anything but ordinary. -

Served with the weekly {Smile-Up} - gratitude practices to love and appreciate your life. 

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' and 'smile up' in the comments to share with the world.
. . . . . . . . . . 

This year has been filled with so many amazing “no ordinary moments”. While my lack of blogging has left holes in the fun and adventure of my life the last few months, I felt it appropriate to end the year with a little post to add to some of these amazing moments I left out. 
So… here’s my “no ordinary moments” and my “Smile-Up” combined for the last couple of months! ;) 

{no ordinary moments} 

{my week of photos - 365 Grateful Project}

{Smile Up}:

Having the Best Birthday Ever
Harvesting Greens and making Kale Chips!  
Good times and late nights with friends   
Fall and Winter walks 
Cute “Sandpaper” black kitty who has made my boyfriend’s place her new home 
Kitties, kitties, kitties! ;)
How everything is so perfect and romantic with the boyfriend ♥ 
The Most amazing Oregon and California trip ever! (this is a different post in itself! ;)) 
Fun and ridiculous Halloween the night we got back from our 3 week trip! 
Oracle Card readings, and I-Ching consulting.     
Watching movies and shows with the boyfriend, all cozy on winter nights ^_^
Making Christmas Presents
Late night walks in the snow, and searching for twinkle lights.  
All my amazing customers and readers, and the super sweet messages I get    
An amazing Christmas with my family and boyfriend’s family ^_^ 

Loving: Fluffy snow • Twinkle Lights • Tall Socks and leg warmers • Painting and Crafting • Green hair • Walks • Chakras • Gemstones • Life-Reflecting • 

Interests for the week:
Reading: online articles 
✯  Current Anime/Manga: Hiiro no Kakera (anime)
✯  TV Shows/Movies: Adventure Time! Spirit Science (youtube videos)
Music Playlist: Death From Above, Blood Red Shoes, Elliot Smith, Kylesa, Jack off Jill, Draconian, so many more! 
Food Faves: Homemade Truffles Daiya Pizza Birthday PB CheeseCake   Crepes Tofu Scrambles Vegan Nog Tofurkey everything

Lessons of the week: 
 Self-worth issues: learn to work through them, it’s a really important issue that immensely affects your life! Balance out listening and talking; good communication is key! Patience: for yourself and others.   Make sure your Chakras are balanced — more on this topic to come. Love Yourself, love yourself, love yourself! ☀ 

Wishing you all an amazing end to 2014 and a fantabulous 2015!  
So much Love and Hugs! 


If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Monday, December 22, 2014

☺ How to Survive and Enjoy the Holidays! ☺

*Originally posted December 2013--coming back for some Holiday Cheer! ;)*

. . . . . . . . . .

Christmas, it's the most wonderful time of the year! Or at least… it's supposed to be. All in all, the holiday season can be a bit dodgy. If your family is dysfunctional then chances are that it gets brought out that much more during the holiday season. Then there's all the money being spent and presents to buy and plans to make that can cause some more stress. However, truthfully, stress is always there, it's whether or not we are choosing to draw it out or let it slide off our backs and keep smiling. I'm rooting for the latter. And in rooting for the latter, I propose…

Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season (with a great big smile on your face!)

Remember to Breathe! 
Perhaps the most valuable and helpful thing you can do this chaotic time of year is to just simply take a step back and remember to breathe. Take a time out. Focus on your breath, clear your mind, and try smiling. Sometimes all you need is a couple of minutes to recuperate and find your centre, other times you may need a couple of hours; but however long it may be, take that for yourself, because things will flow a lot more smoothly when you centre and balance yourself. 
And be sure to brew a pot of herbal tea, sit down with a book or magazine and just take a break from the world every now and then. 
Drop Expectations!
Despite what we may so desperately want to believe at times, christmas day and the holidays are never perfect. Not setting yourself up for disappointment is important. That being said, I'm not encouraging you to mope around and accept that the holidays suck and are joyless. No, no, no. Instead, enjoy what's in front of you and make the most and best of it all, just know that things can go wrong and things are never perfect; but those stresses and disappointments can vanish away when you focus on joy, and of being around loved ones. So that doesn't mean you can't still have a damn amazing christmas, it's all in your perception and being happy with what Is!

“Serenity comes when you trade expectations for acceptance.” ~Unknown

Choose to Enjoy the Holiday Season!
Reality is what we make it. Perception is everything. We may not have control over many things in life, but what we do have control over is how we deal with things. Be realistic and optimistic. For instance: it's a busy time of year, so know and prepare yourself that the stores are going to be busier and lineups may take longer; traffic may be slower; and other unexpected things can happen. But you can control your mood and decide your happiness. Set your mind on Enjoying the Holiday Season and you will! Look around and recognize the beauty around you. In family or other social gatherings, avoid the people you have a hard time with and spend more time with the people you like. Focus on joy and you will make it your experience. 

(re)Read ReLove's post "Holiday Season; Stress, Family, & Bringing Back the Magic"!  
I wrote this post two years ago and I find it relevant every holiday season. Sadly, family can be such a stressor and this post addresses this and how you can get through the holiday season with more joy and realizing that no one's family is perfect, and that's okay. 

Take care of Yourself! 
I know it's the time of year when we tend to drink more, eat foods we shouldn't, splurge, and generally neglect actually caring for ourselves a bit (or a lot). I'm not saying don't enjoy those things, but remember to do everything in moderation and to take special care to balance things out when you do. Don't act like those things won't effect your health. 
I like to recommend taking these extra steps to maintain health of your body and your mind; exercise daily (even if its taking a walk), gets lots of rest and sleep, take a multi-vitamin (and/or a B-complex, Vitamin C & magnesium, and D Drops), drink Lots of water, smile lots (I call this smile therapy), and balance out your eating habits by consuming extra veggies, greens, healthy proteins, and fresh juice when you can.   

Have a Healthy Christmas! 
Ah the Holiday season, time to stuff our faces full of sugar and bad-for-you food. Did I mention this already? Oh no, silly me. But! It needs emphasis! Now, I'm not saying it's not fun to indulge a little, but you Can enjoy the holiday season treats and still actually be healthy--who knew?! There are so many healthy and amazingly delicious recipe alternatives to butter and wheat and sugar filled crap that your body wants nothing to do with. Why sacrifice the love of your body and health when you don't have to? Try new recipes, try something different, and fall in love with healthy food--I promise you won't regret it! 
Replace gmo for organic. Replace the turkey for vegetarian and vegan alternatives--or if you're not going to replace the turkey, then offer more vegan alternatives for the health-conscious guests. Make your own egg nog! Replace refined sugar with organic cane sugar, stevia, agave, maple syrup, or anything other than refined sugar! 
Indulging is fun, and you can still do it by all means, but choose the healthier options, because they are still ridiculously delicious and your body and mind and health will thank you for it! 

Oh dear, I mentioned this one already too, didn't I? Well! It's pretty easy to fall out of exercise habits during this time of year, and I'm not here to tell you not to take it easy, but, you should still put in some effort for your health--especially if you plan on stuffing yourself full of unhealthy food. Do some yoga sessions; this will also help to centre and calm your busy mind. Go for a twenty minute walk, that's all you really need. Get together with some friends and play ice hokey, go snowshoeing, skiing, snowboarding, ice skating. Dance around your living room while you crank terrible pop music and do some baking. ;) Just get at least a little active; again, your body And Mind will thank you!   

Be a Kid! 
I think part of the magic of christmas is the nostalgia of childhood, and so what a perfect excuse to be a big kid! If you have younger siblings, or nieces or nephews, or grandkids, or kids of your own, then be a kid with them: be silly, be giddy, and laugh a lot. Personally, I plan on watching cartoons on christmas day with family, a little piece of my childhood--hoorah!    

Be Giving!
Part of the joys of gifts around the holidays is the actual Giving. I love the giving far more than the receiving. But there are those that have a hard time during the holidays and don't get to take part in the love of receiving either. Do your soul some good and be a little extra giving. Buy gifts for unexpected strangers, or those you know need it; sponsor a family for christmas to buy their presents who can't afford it; volunteer at the soup kitchen; go out and give meals to the homeless; volunteer at an animal shelter. Do your part and spread a little extra joy!  

Have a Green Christmas!
With climate change taunting us at every turn, I think it's important to consider being green this holiday season. I mean, egypt had snow for the first time in over 100 years! And all the madness we are seeing around the world should scream that action needs to be taken by each and every one of us. 
So! Check out ReLove's Holiday Green Tips! Simple and easy switches and things you can do to make your holiday season that much more respectful to mother earth and the animals that live here! ;) Every action counts! 

Respect Your Self! 
I feel like this needs special emphasis at this time of year. Be kind and loving towards yourself. You are not here for people to walk all over you, know when to remove yourself from a situation or when someone has crossed the line with you. You can still respect and be kind to other people and still respect and be kind to yourself. Remember that.  

Give out Free Hugs! 
Remember, because it's just that caring time of year. Spread love and joy onto others, it could remind them to smile and of the beauty that exists in the world. So go out and give out a few random hugs to strangers--and of course the people you love. 

Don’t isolate yourself.  
Being an introvert myself, too many social events and busy busy go-go time can definitely overload the circuits. Which is why Point #1 of this post is so vital. That being said, for those feeling depressed or in grief, a sense of loneliness often becomes stronger during the holidays. That’s why it’s important to break out of any self-imposed exile. Accept invitations, do some volunteer work, call up good friends, Do socialize, and try not to spend too much time by yourself.

Rely on YourSelf for Happiness! 
Remember that no one is responsible for your own happiness but You. Happiness is not something to chase after or that you "achieve." It is not something that can be bought, found in expensive "things" you don't need. And you certainly should not or cannot rely on another person for your Happiness. Only You are responsible for making yourself Happy, because Happiness comes from within. And because Happiness is a Choice. 

Wishing you all a magical and joyful Holiday Season! Keep those smiles brimming and joy spilling over to those around you! :)  
Much love from me to you! 


If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

♥ Black Friday Sales!!! ♥

Several amazing sales going on Friday and through the weekend here at ReLove—as well as a couple other sales I’d like to mention if you’d like other ways of buying goodies elsewhere but still want to support ReLove! ;) 

Okay, straight to it! First up, my sales…

Coupon Code: BLACKFRIDAY14

15% Off all Pre-Made items! 
Coupon Code: BLACKFRIDAY14
10% Off all other items!*
Coupon Code: BLACKFRIDAY14
 *(if you want to buy both a non-premade item but also a pre-made item, then you get 15% off your entire order! Woo! Extra Savings!)
Jewelry included in the 15% off sale! 

15% Off Storewide! 
Coupon Code: SAVE15

Other ways of supporting this blog and all of ReLove Affiliates! This is a great way that you can still show your support and keep this blog and video blog running—so if you appreciate and gain something from this blog, please click through and check out these awesome sales! These are all that I fully stand behind; so I get the added bonus of making a small percentage of sales from companies I adore. ^_^

 Vegan Cuts!

Thank you and have a fabulous weekend! 


If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

♥ Grace Neutral: Art and Apparel ♥

Hand Poke TattoosArtist Designer

Grace Neutral is perhaps best known for her tattooed lilac eyeballs, her stretched nose, pixie ears, removed belly button, her beautiful manga and disney tattoos, and her scarification, but what her lovely individualistic persona leads to is so much more. To say the least, Grace Neutral is such a fascinating, captivating, and talented individual. She struck my attention first on Instagram with her unique and traditional method of hand poke tattooing; from there, her art drew me in, her presence became mesmerizing, and her talents endless. I always admire an artist with so much to offer beyond just their artistic abilities, but getting to see a piece of their lives, of their personalities and characteristic quirks always leads me to follow someone's work even further. Again, I will say this lovely talented woman from the UK is nothing short of astounding. With so much to offer the social media-crazed world we currently live in, it's no wonder she is gaining popularity so quickly--and certainly so very well-deserved. 
Grace, to me, is captivating in appearance but also in her personality; and this is a personality that certainly shows through her work. She is non-traditional in the best ways, completely unique, and not afraid of changing her body to her own liking, unafraid of judgement, and crossing boundaries of expected representations of women. All of these are so admirable in a society that continues to oppress people, and women in specific. Grace is a refreshing breath of fresh air and a positive addition to the social media world. 
After getting to talk a little bit with her, I have to add that she is an absolute sweetheart and I hope to one day meet her in person. 

Hand Poke Tattoos. 
If you are fortunate enough to live nearby--or like me, hope to one day make a trip to the UK-- then Grace Neutral will offer you a unique tattoo experience with amazing artistic talent to back up her traditional method. You can find her at Good Times Tattoo in London, tattooing a variety of fantastic mandalas and cartoon characters that are just too fun. I also love her geekery in general; the tattoos she does surrounding pop culture, disney, cute things, and, of course, Ghibli characters are just too adorable and fantastic for words. Whatever you're looking for, she no doubt will tattoo something unforgettable for your tattoo journey.  

Apparel and Art.
If you aren't fortunate enough to live in the UK then you can still take home with you a piece of Grace Neutral's astounding talents. She runs an etsy shop featuring several brilliant mandala designs on t-shirts and other apparel, some wicked tie-dye stockings and undies, keychains, tote bags, prints, and more. Some of these are limited prints so I definitely recommend getting your hands on anything that catches your eye so you don't miss out. I immediately fell in love with the Totoro and Ghibli mandalas--what a fun and gorgeous idea for shirts! 
Grace Neutral was awesome enough to send me a Totoro mandala tee, as well as a fun "optical illusion" mandala tee. Both are ridiculously fun! They are printed well and with quality; they are also surprisingly comfy for being printed on Gildan t-shirts (I would love to see her designs offered on american apparel or other softer tees though). Both of these shirts are now two of my favourite in my collection. Totoro will always be a favourite amongst Ghibli fans, but I feel that a design this unique only comes around so often--so don't miss out! 

Be sure to check out Grace Neutral on all her social media platforms and show her wonderful art some love! 

Find Grace Neutral:

If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Ⓥ Healthy, Easy Vegan Chocolates! Ⓥ

I looooove chocolate! I mean, who Doesn't love chocolate? Well, my only problem with chocolate is the sugar content. Even the healthy dark chocolate that I love still contains cane sugar, and the few times I have found chocolate sweetened with something else (not stuff I can usually find readily locally) seems to disappear off the shelves so I can't restock. Not to mention that dark healthy chocolate tends to be on the more expensive side--which I don't mind as a treat, but when you love chocolate as much as I do you want it to be a little more affordable. ;) Enter recipe time! 
This recipe is amazing because it makes chocolate even healthier than anything you could buy in stores--because raw cacao or cocoa have tons of health benefits, which is super awesome if you love chocolate and don't want to feel guilty about eating it. The other part of this recipe that makes it super awesome is Coconut oil--which, again, has tons of health benefits! 
Lastly, this recipe is awesome because it is super easy to make, takes no time at all, and takes very few ingredients! You can also choose to sweeten with whatever sweetener of your choice--and my choice is the healthiest of all the sweeteners: stevia! Chocolate lovers rejoice! 

Some of the benefits of Cacao: 
  • High in antioxidants, which: Protect your cells from damaging molecules and free radicals--therefore reducing risk of heart disease, cancer, and other diseases. Anti-aging agents. And improve cardio-vascular health, enhance blood flow, healthy cholesterol levels, and in some cases, reducing blood pressure. 
  • Increases serotonin and other neurotransmitters, therefore enhancing mood and decreasing depression.
  • Rich in minerals like magnesium (deficiencies linked to heart disease, diabetes and joint problems), sulfur (a beauty mineral- helps detoxify your system and promotes healthy skin!), calcium, iron, copper, manganese and potassium.

Some benefits of Coconut Oil:
  • While it is composed mostly of saturated fats, much of the fatty acids come from lauric acid, which is a medium chain fatty acid that combats both viruses and bacteria.
  • Lauric acid also helps prevent heart problems like high cholesterol and blood pressure through it’s promotion of “good” cholesterol (HDL) and reduction of “bad” cholesterol (LDL). Also reduces injury to arteries!
  • Promotes weight loss by increasing metabolism- the fatty acids are super easily absorbed so can be burned instead of being stored. Also supports our organs, such as the pancreas allowing us to burn more energy.
  • Improves digestion and helps with digestive related problems. Also improves absorption of vitamins and minerals! 

Now, on to the recipe! ;)

vegan / gluten free/ sugar-free/ 

Healthy Vegan Chocolates

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
6 heaping Tbs of Raw Cacao powder
Pinch of Salt 
Hazelnut Stevia to sweeten (or other sweetener of your choice)

In a double boiler, melt the coconut oil. Once melted, add the cacao powder, salt, and sweetener and stir until smooth and creamy and well mixed. Sweeten to your desired liking--I haven't measured and it really depends on your personal sweet-tooth, so add it slowly and then you can always add more! 
To keep it Raw, don't overheat or overcook, you just need enough heat to melt the coconut oil after all. 
Once you have the mixture to your desired sweetness, pour into chocolate moulds or miniature ice-cube trays--or whatever else you feel creative with. 
Freeze for at least 15 minutes, or until sets. 

Store in the fridge until ready to use.   

If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Friday, October 10, 2014

{this moment} - and the weekly {Smile-Up}

. . . . . . . . . . 
"There are no ordinary moments." ~Way of the Peaceful Warrior

{no ordinary moments} - Photos capturing moments from the week. Simple, special, extraordinary moments.
 -  using Daily Gratitude to see the world as anything but ordinary. -

Served with the weekly {Smile-Up} - gratitude practices to love and appreciate your life. 

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' and 'smile up' in the comments to share with the world.
. . . . . . . . . . 

{no ordinary moments} 

{my week of photos - 365 Grateful Project}

{Smile Up}:

Having my twin flame back home again
Jumping into my boyfriend's arms after two weeks of being apart  
Phone calls with my bestie ^_^  
Being productive! 
Hiking! New hikes! Finally doing the Kokanee Glacier hike!
How everything is so perfect and romantic with the boyfriend ♥ 
Catching pretty sunsets up mountains   
Exercise and getting super duper healthy!    
More planning for the fun coastal trip with le boyfriend! ^_^
Gratitude Lists    
Getting outside in this pretty fall weather 
Drawing on my cintiq 
All my amazing customers and readers, and the super sweet messages I get    
Sewing and creating!
Mini trips across the border 
Fall drives -- and staring at my boyfriend instead of the scenery haha  

Loving: Fall • Steampunk Sunglasses • Fun Fall Layers • My New Boots • Braids • Fall drives • Cintiq • Kitty Drives • Trip Planning • Lunalight Vegan Ring •

Interests for the week:
Reading: too busy for reading this week! :o 
✯  Current Anime/Manga: Hiiro no Kakera (anime)
✯  TV Shows/Movies:  none
Music Playlist: Norma Jean, Deftones, Manson, In Flames
Food Faves: Homemade Chocolate Layered Smoothie Bowls Sourdough Grilled Cheese   New Smoothie Recipes Daiya Cream Cheese Roasted Potatoes

Lessons of the week: 
 Keep Smiling. Deal with issues as they arise--Immediately! Start figuring it out, writing it out, and feeling good about life again so you can move forwards. Always focus on Self Worth; you Are Worthy, you Are Awesome!   Practice Actively Participating in Your Own Happiness! Do it, do it!! Stick up for yourself, standing in the shadows of life gets you nowhere! ☀ 

Wishing you all an amazing day and plenty of magical moments! 
So much Love and Hugs! 


If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger... Save $100 on Blendtec Factory Recertified Blenders + Free Shipping