Welcome to the Good Life

by torontogirlwest on November 1, 2014

Woah!! What happened there!?!? I kind of fell off the map, and I have to say it was never really conscious choice!! I took a bit of a break from blogging and next thing I knew MONTHS had gone by!!

But trust me, my being absent had nothing to do with things going badly in my life. Not at all! In fact, I’ve been having a grand old time and really finding a new balance of sorts. It’s all good!! icon smile Welcome to the Good Life

You can’t even imagine how many times I’ve started this blog entry in my head. In fact, I’ve written entire blog entries in my head but those don’t count in the least. So why don’t we do a quick catch-up of what’s been going on since late July . . .



Coupland Pop Heads Welcome to the Good Life

Out and About in Van-City – This year I’ve really made an effort to get out there a bit more. Left to my own devices, I have been known to turn down invitations to go hang out in favour of some alone time, reading a good book, or cooking up a storm instead. And while those things have their merits, I decided it was important to make sure I took every opportunity to head out and really enjoy every moment of life. That’s how the summer of yes was born!

Was I busy? Yeah! But did I enjoy things I normally wouldn’t check out? Absolutely! Take the portraits above for instance, they were part of a truly fantastic Douglas Coupland exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery. In my nearly three years living in this city I had never set foot in the art gallery – that was until the summer of yes! icon smile Welcome to the Good Life


Couple Maui Welcome to the Good Life

That time we went to Hawaii and a Hurricane Came to Visit – Yeah, that was a big one! HA! In early August the Husband and I decided to take a trip (our first) to Hawaii to celebrate the end of his Master’s degree! We had a lovely time and were seriously relaxed but then there was that bit about Hurricane Iselle. She decided to head straight for the Hawaiian Islands while we were in Maui. At one point while in our room, sitting on our patio furniture that had been moved inside due to the fear of projectiles, the Husband asked me if I knew when I booked the trip that it was hurricane season in Hawaii!!! Ahahahah – let’s just say it was the first time in forever that a hurricane made direct landfall in Hawaii. That trip is clearly going to have to require a post of its very own! icon razz Welcome to the Good Life


Teddy Bear Dog Welcome to the Good Life

Daisy Turns Five – That’s right!!!! The puppy love of my life turned five this year!!! icon smile Welcome to the Good Life The day got off to a rough start when I took her to a puppypalooza event, only to have her freak out when the pet massage therapist tried to touch her. Daisy was so scared that the lady decided to “send her some energy” while I held her under the shade of the tent. Massage therapist lady then proceeded to tell me that Daisy was sending her strong energy back! BWAHAHAHAHA – I can’t even!

After traumatizing my poor doggy with a lady too hippyish for my blood, I took her to her favourite beach in Vancouver, where she proceeded to smear her body all over the ocean floor at low tide. Once she was sufficiently dirty I took her home, where I presented her with a few presents. By far, her favourite present was that itty bitty squeaky tennis ball! WIN! icon smile Welcome to the Good Life


East Sooke Park Welcome to the Good Life

10 Years in British Columbia – This past Labour Day marked ten years since I moved to BC! Happily, that occasion coincided with some free time for both Danielle and myself, so we took off to Victoria (Vancouver Island) for an extended long weekend full of hikes, waterfall hunting, incredibly delicious eats, hanging out with Island friends, and views galore!!!! Full post coming on those adventures soon!


Puppy on the Chief Welcome to the Good Life

Hikes, hikes, and more hikes – I’m sure you guys know by now that summer isn’t summer around Vancouver unless we’re hitting the hiking trails. This summer we even hit a Vancouver classic – the Chief!!

There’s a reason my puppy looks dead tired (and dirty)! The trail to the top is very steep, at the top there are chains and ladders, and the terrain is largely made of steps that were pretty tall and fairly far apart. It was a challenging hike and my knee hated me for an eternity afterwards! But at least all three of us can say we made it to the top and back!


Brunette in the Forest Welcome to the Good Life

A New and More Active Me – this one has been huge for me!!!!! Since we last spoke, I’ve become a gym regular again and I’m absolutely loving it!!!! It all started when the people at GoodLife Fitness contacted me to find out if I would be interested in checking out their gym for a free 30 day period. I said yes, figuring it was a good way to get back into the swing of things. Especially since now that the rainy weather is approaching, and I can’t possibly head out for nearly as many hikes.

During that free 30 day trial I worked out at a brand spanking new location near my work, took a crazy awesome Body Combat class with one of my best friends in Toronto, and found an awesome new personal trainer. WHAT!?!? 30 day free trial for the win!!!

Since starting the trial period, getting up at 5am to head to the gym has become a habit for me, I’ve lost inches, rehabbed some long standing injuries, signed up for a full year membership, and hired my personal trainer on a long-term basis! I guess you could say I’m loving the GoodLife! icon wink Welcome to the Good Life


Thanksgiving Welcome to the Good Life

The Long Journey Home – And of course, I can’t forget one of the best things to happen in the last while – I went home for Thanksgiving!!!!!! It had been years since I had spent a holiday at home and there was something so amazing about being surrounded by my parents, seeing my puppy spoiled to death (seriously, she gained a whole pound while we were in Toronto), and being back in my old haunt! Besides, who wouldn’t love a visit that included home smoked turkey that looks like that!?!?!? icon smile Welcome to the Good Life


So there you have it! Clearly, I’ve been gone a while because this entry was heaps longer than I thought it would be! icon razz Welcome to the Good Life Here’s hoping you guys have also been doing really well – I for one can’t wait to read all about it on your respective blogs or in the comments!

Question: What are you looking forward to now that November is here? This is my Birthday and Anniversary month so the Husband and I will be taking a weekend trip to Whistler!!! I’m excited as that will be my first time up there for a non-work reason!!! 


Summer Love in Vancouver

by torontogirlwest on July 22, 2014

Canada Place View Summer Love in Vancouver

Hola Friends:

Have I told you that summer Mondays have become rather a special day for me? Random, isn’t it!?! I know most of us spend the weekend dreading Monday but this summer Zumba Vancouver, and Port Metro Vancouver have gone and brightened the start of my week! icon smile Summer Love in Vancouver

Zumba Canada Place Summer Love in Vancouver

For a couple of weeks now, if I’m out of court, I make a quick getaway from work on Monday afternoons. And I do mean quick because before I leave work, I change into my Zumba gear! Otherwise known as, cue the ridiculously bright colours! icon razz Summer Love in Vancouver

After making my escape through the most discreet way possible, I get into my car and drive to Canada Place – where I join what seems like a couple of hundred other Zumba lovers (or those willing to give it a try) for a free outdoor Zumba class surrounded by the incredibly beautiful Coal Harbour scenery!

Zumba Vancouver Summer Love in Vancouver

I can’t quite put my finger on why but this afternoon’s class absolutely lifted my spirits. It was more than the Latin rhythms that spoke to my saucy side ( icon wink Summer Love in Vancouver ), the dancing that helped me sweat out any of the day’s frustrations, or even the refreshing breeze . . . All I know is that as I walked away from my class I couldn’t help but feel incredibly lucky. It was definitely one of those, I can’t believe this is my life moments!!!

Selfie in Coal Harbour Summer Love in Vancouver

I think Jo (Living Mint Green) was right when she recently pointed out that life won’t always be like this – that of course doesn’t mean that it will not be magical but it will be different! And so it’s incredibly important to live in the moment.

Such wise friends I have! icon razz Summer Love in Vancouver

Anywho, if you’re in Vancouver and free on any Monday at 5:30pm for the remainder of the summer (July and August) I encourage you to go check out the free Zumba class at Canada Place. Not only because cool people like me shake their groove things but because it’s a fun community event that highlights all that’s awesome about this city in the summer!! icon smile Summer Love in Vancouver

And now for no particular reason, I shall leave you with your cute of the day . . .

Puppy in Bed Summer Love in Vancouver

All together now, awwwww . . . . icon smile Summer Love in Vancouver


Question: What are you most looking forward to for the remainder of July? One of my besties is getting married this Sunday and that should be a blast!!! Also, one of my good friends is throwing a fireworks viewing party in the next little bit – his place is fabulous with the most amazing views! Besides, the crowd is always a really good time!!!


A Brutally Honest Review: New 2014 Kashi Products – Non-GMO and Gluten-Free

July 14, 2014
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Hola Friends!! How have things been going in your neck of the woods? Here in the Vancouver Coastal Casa things have been mighty hot – and I’m not just saying that because I’m a spicy Latina (HA! ) but because the West Coast of Canada has been hit with a heatwave of sorts! Although, unlike […]

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Lately – of the last day of spring, impromptu trips, and city love

July 9, 2014
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So where were we?!? Ah yes, it was early June when we last spoke. Time to get you all caught up again!!! When we last spoke, I was in the middle of a long trial. Once it came to an end I was totally looking forward to catching up again. But I didn’t get that […]

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China: 25 Years Later

June 4, 2014
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25 years ago China was closed to the Western world. Some things have changed, and others remain the same. But if my trip to China has taught me anything, it’s that we really are more alike than we realize. That’s why travel is so important – it breaks down barriers and opens up minds to […]

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Qufu: Everything Has Its Beauty But Not Everyone Sees It (The Confucian Sites)

June 1, 2014
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Hola friends! It’s yet the end of another week here in the Coastal Casa and I’m happy to be coming at you again with another blog post! Before I begin, I have to thank all of you that commented on my last post and welcomed me back. After such a long lull I wondered if […]

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Lately – Of New Grass, Sunsets, and Lessons Learned

May 25, 2014
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“Where has she been,” you’re probably asking? “Has she turned into one of those people who never blog again and never bother to say goodbye?” “Jerk,” you may be muttering . . . Well rest assured friends, this is not the end! Sure, I took a step back from the blog for a while. An […]

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A Time for New Beginnings

April 20, 2014
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Hello Everyone: It’s Easter weekend – a time for new beginnings, loads of sugar, and time spent with family, and friends. As always during the Holidays, I find myself feeling extra grateful for all the good things in my life. And although, this particularly weekend was decidedly low-key (what with the Husband working on the […]

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Lately – Of Mines, Pies, and Dogs Wearing Hats

April 5, 2014
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Hola Friends! It’s been an alarmingly long time since I last posted so I thought we were overdue for one of my “Lately” posts! If you can remember that far back, you’ll recall that I started March off blogging pretty consistently . . . and then I fell off the face of the Earth. Truth […]

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March 10, 2014
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My soul honours your soul. I honour the place in you where the entire universe resides. I honour the light, love, truth . . . beauty and peace within you . . . because it is also within me. In sharing these things we are united . . . we are the same . . […]

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