Things I Love

This gratitude post was inspired by Schmutzie's post on Aiming Low.  
I wrote one of these a while ago at my old blog.  This one is my update.
Pandan, Daet Camarines Norte
... my grandmother’s house in the Philippines, with its jasmine and rose bushes, rice paddy field, and kalamansi trees...
... summer day trips to small towns just outside the city...
... having the door held open for me...
... the crack of the hard caramelized sugar top when I dig into a creme brulee...
... Scottish accents...
... bacon baked so that the fatty bits are dry and crisp...
... white walls I freshly painted myself...
... how fast I can make myself breakfast thanks to my favourite dairy-free shake...
... update pictures of the SOS childrens village we support every month...
... green tea, moscato, and gin and tonic...
... that the moment I sit on the couch, Cora comes and lies down on my lap...
... my house right after a good cleaning and I can invite people over...
... that my daughter and I go to Disney on Ice ever year because it's become tradition...
... watching new episodes of The 100 and Shadowhunters on Netflix...
... the feel of a fresh pair of contact lenses...
... how light my head feels after a long overdue haircut...
... that, sometimes, all I need is a quick swipe of my favourite lipsheer to make me feel better...
... how saying just one word would set my husband and me laughing over a shared memory...
... real-life royal weddings...
... teaching hula 'auana workshops...
... the feeling after Goodwill comes and takes 10 boxes of your clutter away for other people to use...
... walking around Hilo, Hawai’i on misty days...
... when my online accounts notify me that I’ve been paid...
... watching my daughter dance lyrical and my son dance hip hop...
... that I lived with my husband first before we got married...
... soft fresh salmon sashimi...
... starting a brand new erotic romance novel by any one of my favourite authors...
... going out for breakfast with my sister... 
... dancing hip hop with my dance group...
... spending the whole day in pajamas...
... the caesar’s salad at Stella’s that has the perfect amount of garlic and parmesan...
... rediscovering what flowers I had planted when they pop up again in the Spring...
... the warmth of the Summer sun on my face...

How about you? What do you love right now?

How I Started Again - Part 2


It started with Netflix

Thanks, Billy Idol  :)
My turning point happened when I watched Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things during Christmas Holidays.

There, on the screen in front of me, were the minimalist bloggers I had been following years before!

Suddenly I was catapulted back to 2009, and I was once again surrounded by the toys, chaos, and mess that come with early motherhood, praying for a fire/tornado/earth-opening-up situation that would consume the contents of my house so I could start again... with much, much less... with only the things I deem important in my life.

Then, with a flick of a switch, the lightbulb went on, bright and shining, blinding almost, like a slap in the face saying "Wake up, you crazy woman!"

Suddenly, that girl I was in part 1 (you know that was me, right? ok, just checking), who had been in such a bad head space, woke up again.  The fog lifted, and I reconnected with life.
With my mindset and self-confidence back in place, I had a new clutter-free/chaos-free direction, and so I start the journey towards...

Having A Life with Only The Important Things

I've been regularly decluttering my house every single year, but I stopped having a goal to head toward.  In other words, I've been just half-assing it.
Not anymore.
Now, I'm going to be ruthless in my pursuit of a life with only the important things.

I'm giving myself the next three months, and when I come out the other end, the new habits of my new life should be in place and running smoothly.

So, here's what I'm aiming for... in point form... because I like point form... and so will you...

Do work I love the way I love.
My mission is to create a community of women who wish to level-up and become a healthier happier version of themselves.  My contribution will be...
+  Teaching hula for fitness and body love.
+  Getting clean safe makeup and skincare into the hands of women.
+  Providing women with convenient healthy meals packed with nutrients and superfoods for healthy weight maintenance, stress management, energy, and detoxification.
So, essentially, my ultimate purpose is to create a race of hot brilliant healthy Victoria's Secret models.  Who's in?!

A bohemian minimalist home.
When you think minimalist, you typically thing black/white, monochromatic, etc.  That's just not me.  I love colour, patterns, but not tchotchkes and trinkets.  Who wants to dust that shit?!  Not me.  No way.

A capsule wardrobe of clean, casual lines. 
I did Project 333 a while back, and I just couldn't do it.  I need more than 33 pieces.  But I can still have a wardrobe with just my favourite things, and not a bunch of clothes I wouldn't want to wear if I happen to bump into any of my exes.  Also, I'm done with dressing like a college student or a mom of toddlers.

Paleo/Keto way of eating.
So, no carbs, no sugars, no gluten, no starch.  This is important to me because I have a blood sugar issue.  I had gestational diabetes with my son, and I have insulin resistance.  As a teen, I was diagnosed with reactive hypoglycemia.  When my blood sugar when low, I'd want to rip my boyfriend Cam a second one.  Considering he survived with just one into husbandhood, I obviously figured out how to deal with it:  Low carb, moderate protein, high fat.

Consistent cleansing/detoxing.
I will continue to practice nutritional cleansing.  Every night.  Cleaning inside and out.

Bed by 9:30 pm.
As I type this at exactly 11:11 pm. I'm so not even kidding.

Consistent weight training and resistance training.
I have a very simple routine that I've cooked up based on the teachings of The Glute Guy himself, Bret Contreras, because I have one of those typical flat-as-a-pancake Filipino butts.  Then, as my need for heavier weights increases, I'll join the Goodlife Fitness that will soon be opening nearby.

Yoga and meditation.
I don't do a damn thing to relax and rejuvenate.  I really don't.  Wow, I just realized that.  I think I do, but I don't.  Ask yourself that question.  When do you relax and rejuvenate?  When, like me, you have no clue, just go.  Book a massage, take a hatha yoga class like me (Awesome Hot Yoga, here I come!), download a guided meditation... do something.

Dance my ass off.  Often.
Could that be the reason why I'm lacking ass?!...  Ahem.
I'm a dancer.  But for a long time, I didn't really consider dance as a workout -- it's too much fun!  I clued into making dance my workout of choice from reading oodles and oodles of articles saying DO WHAT YOU LOVE.  Seriously, it took me years to get this through my thick-haired skull!
And what makes that extra crazy is that I'VE BEEN DANCING SINCE THE AGE OF 6!!!
So, I'm going to dance hula and ori tahiti again on a regular basis (and teach as well!).  I'm also embracing my Wednesday night hip hop classes and now competitive hiphop classes, both taught by my dear friend Chelsea at Royal Dance at the Forks.  Check out how awesome she makes us look...

Recital 2015

So, come with me!

As I improve my life, I hope you'll be inspired to do the same.  I'm giving tips, advice, and more in-depth detail on how I'm executing my plan.  You can even do it all with me!

I'll also be documenting this daily journey on Facebook at my blog's Fan Page.  I'd LOVE it if you would come along.  I need a cheering squad, love, partners, and a whole lot of...




Love you all!  Let the games begin!!!

How I Started Again - Part 1


A long time ago (well, about 5 years actually)...
In a galaxy (not really) far, far away...

...There was a 42 year old girl (yes, "girl"...shh!).  She was feeling unhappy, uncomfortable, and trapped in a body she felt had betrayed her.  She felt like her time was done, that her glory days were over.

Then, she did something pretty freakin' awesome...

BEFORE + AFTER (2012)

And she LOVED the way she felt, her new slimmer figure, her new-found energy, that she slept better, and that she would get ID'd at the liquor store and guys at the mall actually started giving her a second look (Dude!  I'm old enough to be your mom!!!).  Ahem.

She went back to dancing -- first, her beloved hula; then hiphop; then Zumba; then jazz.  She started lifting.
She wasn't completely at her goal, but she felt empowered. IN CONTROL. UNSTOPPABLE.

Then... life happened.

She got "busy" and spread herself too thin.
She said "yes" too many times to other people, and "no" too many times to herself.

She stopped working out and let other things come first -- her daughter's dance pursuits, her son's educational goals, supporting/co-planning her team events. and so on.

She fell off the wagon, and her personal mantra became "Either fast food or no food."
She became the walking billboard for "You are what you eat", and because she ate crap, her body and her mind began to transform.
She felt like crap.
She lost faith in herself.
She let the negative self-talk get to her...

"You're not good enough.  You're not smart enough.  You're not making good use of your time. Why can't you keep up?  You're letting people down.  You're a crappy leader.  You don't know what you're doing, so why would anyone follow you?!  No wonder you're not as advanced as you thought you would be by now!"

Stress became her constant companion, and she had lost control.

Then something happened to give her hope:  she hit rock bottom.

OMG
Her smile hid her sadness and her disappointment in her life and in herself.
Because she knew she was better than this.

But she knew that, when you're down, the only way to go is up...
Excited, she decided to start from Square One... and that's a damn good place to start...

(... to be continued in, you know, part 2)