Pretty/Ugly

I found this poem and I struggle to remember where. I think a friend may have messaged me it. Wherever it came from, it is amazing. Read it from the top down, then from the bottom up. No cheating, down first!

I’m very ugly

So don’t try to convince me that

I am a very beautiful person

Because at the end of the day

I hate myself in every single way

And I’m not going to lie to myself by saying

There is beauty inside of me that matters

So rest assured I will remind myself

That I am a worthless, horrible person

And nothing you say will make me believe

I still deserve love

Because no matter what

I am not good enough to be loved

And I am in no position to believe that

Beauty does exist within me

Because whenever I look in the mirror I always think

Am I as ugly as people say?

(Now read bottom up)

     By Abdullah Shoaib

How many of you believed the first version, reading down? It is so not true. You are everything from the bottom up so Be Pretty, Plus and Proud of who you are because you are beautiful and worthy!

 

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A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words

Do you enjoy photography but despise having your own image photographed? Many of us on self-love journeys struggle when we see pictures of ourselves. How many of your eyes are immediately drawn to the body part you like least of all? I know that tends to be my habit instead of focusing on the things that are most attractive like my smile or my big, bright eyes. I wish to propose a challenge for you today. I recently took part in an Instagram photo challenge sponsored by @grief_coach_ophelia, @oilymasters, @steepedang_ygk and @vallasmalas. I hope you consider trying some of the activities below to help your body positivity grow and improve your self-love. Good luck and have fun!

  1. Take a selfie and post on your favourite social media platform.
  2. Take a picture of your favourite facial feature.
  3. Take a picture of your favourite body part (keep it clean).
  4. Have someone take a picture of you laughing.
  5. Take a picture of something that makes you smile.
  6. Take a picture of someone who makes you smile.
  7. Take a picture of your favourite outfit or article of clothing either of you wearing it or just on the hanger.
  8. Put on something with lots of bling and take a photo.
  9. Take a picture of you doing something you love or of an item used in your favourite activity.
  10. Take a no makeup selfie.
  11. Start a journal with the first entry about a personality trait you love.
  12. Take a picture of a place you love to be at.
  13. Post a picture of a quote that motivates and inspires you.
  14. Have someone photograph you being silly.
  15. Write this down, “I love myself”. Take a picture of you holding this sign.

These are some of the 28 ideas that were part of this challenge. For more great ideas, check out the whole list at #28DaysofSelfLoveChallenge on Instagram. Hopefully these ideas will help you feel more comfortable and confident in front of the camera. Be Pretty, Plus and Proud as you pose and post because you are picture worthy!

Love Your Body By Feeding It Well

A lot of people assume the Body Positive Movement glorifies and accepts obesity. The movement encourages everyone to love their size and shape without feeling the pressure to change it in a way more suited to society’s standards of beauty. Nothing could be further from the truth. Yes you are encouraged to love your body with curves, lumps, bumps and rolls but it doesn’t encourage abuse of the body by overeating, starving it or mistreating it in any way. The idea is that if you love your body you will treat it with almost holy reverence for it is a divine temple. If you love your body you will feed it well, move it and adorn it. There is always room for treats and days when you just feel like lounging in pyjamas watching episode after episode of your favourite Netflix series. If you love your body, you embrace and accept yourself and have no desire to alter yourself to look like a Hollywood starlet. You accept you are not perfect, you will make mistakes, poor decisions but there is always opportunity to bounce back.

With all that being said, when you feed your body, you know you should, for the most part, choose foods that will provide your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs to operate at peak efficiency so you can live your best life and be the best version of yourself. Remember to not be too strict and allow yourself small treats so you don’t feel deprived and tempted to overindulge.

Here’s a list of foods I came across lately that will help boost your metabolism and allow you to lead a long and healthy life inside a body that can be perfect regardless of its size or shape. *Note: size and shape do not determine health and it is your choice when it comes to decisions about your body.*

Metabolism Boosting Foods:

  • almonds
  • apples
  • asparagus
  • beans
  • berries
  • broccoli
  • cabbage
  • carrots
  • celery
  • cucumber
  • curry
  • eggs
  • garlic
  • grapefruit
  • lemon
  • limes
  • oats
  • oranges
  • peanut butter
  • spicy peppers
  • spinach
  • tomatoes
  • yogurt

Tailor this list to your preferences, eliminating allergens or anything that causes stomach upset. Check with your doctor before introducing anything new especially if you have health issues or are on medications. 

Enjoy foods that are in season as they will be the freshest, best tasting and generally the cheapest. Be Pretty, Plus and Proud of who you are and be nice to your body for it works hard for you!

In Honour Of My Dad For Father’s Day!

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In honour of my Dad who recently passed away, I would like to share the eulogy I wrote and read at his funeral. I miss him dearly especially this weekend, being our first Father’s Day without him.

Happy Father’s Day Dad, until we meet again!

My father was a devoted husband, a kind friend and the best father any child could be blessed with. I know he will be dearly missed by all those who loved him including many nieces and nephews.

He was a devout Catholic man who relied heavily on his faith as he journeyed through life.

He was a proud grandfather to his only grandchild, my daughter Emily, introducing her to her first ice cream at 15 months old. We all know how much he loved his sweets, especially ice cream.

He was a talented man both in his career and his hobbies. As a pastry chef, he had the privilege of baking for many dignitaries including the Queen, Prince Phillip, Prince Charles and Princess Diana. As children, we were envied for our elaborate birthday cakes. He was a skilled woodworker whose creations will be wonderful heirlooms for many generations to come.

He was a smart man, fixing anything in the house without the help of YouTube like we have today. He worked without fear of the house falling apart as a result of his handiwork. He taught himself how to use a computer at an age when most people had trouble understanding technology. He loved photography, especially of nature.

He loved to camp, Keji (a provincial park in NS), being his home away from home. I like to think that’s what his heaven looks like.

He had a guilty giggle when he knew he had done something wrong and a twinkle in his eye.

He was a kind and gentle man, even as age robbed him of his memories, his personality remained the same. The staff at Northwood, where he has lived for the last several years, all shared the same sentiment, that it was a privilege for them to have been involved in his care. I think that says a lot about a man who has left us with nothing but the fondest of memories.

Dad, we love you and there will not be a day that passes that we won’t miss you. Rest peacefully with Mom and your family by your side.

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XO

Life Is Short

Life is way too short so:

  • eat the chocolate cake
  • walk in the rain and splash in the puddles
  • dance like no one is watching
  • sing even if you’re off-key
  • smile at everyone
  • give out free hugs
  • walk barefoot through the grass
  • wear a bikini no matter what shape or size you are
  • take naps
  • try new things
  • play with your kids (don’t worry about the pile of dirty dishes by the sink or the dust bunnies under the beds)
  • laugh often
  • be helpful
  • be kind
  • travel and see the world
  • Be Pretty, Plus and Proud
  • LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST
  • NO REGRETS

LIFE IS WAY TOO SHORT

28 Days of Self-Love

Thanks to athomepamperingplus on Instagram for inspiring this blog post!

28 Days of Self-Love:

  1. Give yourself a hug.
  2. Journal all the wonderful things you have accomplished, your many talents, the parts of you that you are okay with, basically anything and everything positive.
  3. Cultivate a morning routine; stretches (yoga), positive affirmations, healthy breakfast and set off on your day in a great outfit.
  4. Take a deep breath.
  5. Laugh (a lot).
  6. Evaluate your eating habits. Eat well most of the time but don’t deprive yourself of your favourite treats once in a while.
  7. Take a walk.
  8. Give yourself permission to do nothing. You don’t always have to be busy and productive. Your body and brain need a break.
  9. Meditate.
  10. Drink more water.
  11. Every hour, say something nice about yourself.
  12. Get into your body. Listen to what it tells you. Do what you need to so you feel good in your body.
  13. Do something that scares you, even if it’s something small like wearing a pair of shorts when your legs have rarely seen the sun.
  14. Make a fabulous dinner just for yourself.
  15. Spend the day doing something you love.
  16. Work on your posture.
  17. Self massage.
  18. Take care of what you’ve been avoiding.
  19. Make a list of your accomplishments (see your journal entries).
  20. Learn something new.
  21. Go on an artist’s date.
  22. Get some sun.
  23. Make a list of things you are good at (again check those journal entries).
  24. Tell yourself, “I love you”.
  25. Give yourself some room. to grow, to learn, to make mistakes, to love, to be happy, to accomplish goals and dream.
  26. Pick some flowers.
  27. Choose positive thoughts. Have a glass half full mentality.
  28. Write yourself a love letter.

Bonus: Be Pretty, Plus and Proud always!

Saying Good-Bye

Sorry I’ve been away from blog writing for so long. Sadly, during my recent visit to NS, my father passed away on June 6th. It was a difficult and emotional week leading up to his passing, taking turns with my sister, sitting by his bedside so he wouldn’t be alone. In the end, he died surrounded by love, my sister and I both were with him.

Thank you to all my family and friends for their support, hugs, prayers and love that helped my sister and I get through this journey of saying good-bye to a man who was truly one of a kind. Thank you to my sister who, as his primary caregiver, gave up a lot of her time to care for him and make sure he was looked after with dignity and respect at the nursing home where he resided. Thank you to the caring staff who all shared the same sentiment, that it was an honour and privilege to be involved in his care. They loved his kind and gentle spirit that never changed despite his dementia as he aged.

Losing the people you love is never easy. Our parents teach us how to live but never how to live without them. With both my parents now gone, I’m left feeling a little bit like an orphan. I am very fortunate to have my husband, daughter and lots of cousins to support me, along with my brother and sister who I hope to continue to keep close despite the loss of the glue of our parents to keep us together. One of my cousins referred to me as the matriarch of the family now which I guess, as the oldest sibling, is a title I am willing to embrace. I hope I do my parents proud as I continue to journey through life without their guidance. I know they will be watching closely and I have faith we will see each other again.

Hold your loved ones close to your heart, let them know they are precious to you for you never know when they will be taken from you. Appreciate your relationships and foster positivity within those bonds you have established. One day you will be able to look back at the past with fond memories and not regrets.