G’day from down under! Haven’t had great wifi the last couple days and it’s actually been quite lovely! We’ve got a small cabin at a park on the beach about 2 hours north of Auckland. I was 12 when I was last here.
It’s so great to spend time with my cousins and family. Today we’re having a New Years Eve Hāngi, a traditional Māori method of cooking for special occasions. Instead of cooking it in the ground, uncle Donald and Linda are cooking the food all day in a beer keg!
Today I went fishing w/ my cousin and caught this big snapper!
Being out on the water was incredibly beautiful and HOT. My god the sun here is brilliantly warm and sun block is essential because there’s a hole in the ozone layer. I’m going for safe gradual tan and we’ve still got 2 weeks to go.
Tomorrow we drive to Taupo and stay in a farm house Airbnb for one night. Next we head to Palmerston North for a couple days then out to the coast near Masterton for the weekend.
Sending love and sunshine from the future (18 hours ahead of Toronto)!!!
Mum and I arrived in New Zealand earlier this week and the flight was pretty great. I was a little nervous about driving in NZ on the other side of the road with a right-hand drive car but it was totally ok.
I was super alert after sleeping half of the flight from San Francisco to Auckland.
NOT A GOOD TRAVEL PILLOW
Everyone knows the travel pillows below but they’re bulky, not that stylish, and don’t really hold up your head.
Well, do I have the best travel accessory ever for you!
I ordered the Trtl pillow from Amazon and when mum came over before we left, she was like “ok I need one of these too”. So now I have ordered two. It was an absolute lifesaver for the journey here. It wraps around your neck like a scarf and the plastic bit under the cover holds your head up. I slept 5 hours on the 11-hour flight, incredible!
Here we go!
Best travel pillow!
Long flight but refreshed
I picked up a few other things for this trip and they’ve already come in super handy. We’re in Auckland this week and driving up to the Coromandel Peninsula tomorrow to spend some time at the beach with some family on my dad’s side. I love it here so much.
Don’t waste time. Don’t stay in a job you hate or a love you don’t have. Do what you love. Do what makes you happy.
Whatever you truly want is out there waiting for you to grab on and take it for a ride. Find it. Build it. Break it. Make it. Bring it into your life.
Being in a movie is fun.
I like being on camera.
And I love acting.
Find your happiness and take it everywhere you go. Share it around and it will spread. It’s contagious in the best kind of way.
If you don’t want to do something find a way to change it. Don’t feel bad about staying home or changing your mind. It’s ok to change your mind, realize you don’t want something anymore. Make lists and cross things off. Do the thing you have always wanted to do.
Do what makes you happy. Find a way to make it your life.
I’m nervous/excited today and that’s my favourite feeling in the world. The feeling you get before something big happens, before you make a significant change or a go on a great adventure. Tomorrow I’m on set for a few scenes of my cameo in a feature film. Yes, me! Huge call sheet with lots of scenes and set times, characters, craft, lighting. Soexciting! On Sunday mum and I leave for New Zealand.
This is where we are spending 3 days over New Years with my aunt, uncle, and cousins.
In other exciting travel news, Aeroplan just launched a new tool for using your Miles to book flights and get travel deals. I’ve been an Aeroplan member since I was a teenager and redeeming miles has been helpful in my adventures. I also have a credit card that helps me earn rewards.
I got a chance to check out the site as soon as it launched and obvs my first instinct was to check the great deals. As more people book the great deals, more will come available. Some of the destinations on my vacation dreams list are Barcelona, Venice, Lisbon, and Athens. The interface is nice and clean and it’s easy to navigate.
I found a great deal to Paris in the springtime which has been a dream of mine for the last few years. I imagine Sean and I riding bikes with berets and baguettes, romantic walks by the tour Eiffel. Lots of flowers and cafes.
I’m really excited and can’t wait for adventure that lies ahead.
See my Aeroplan video below and check out the new travel site here.
People often think short hair is low maintenance, it’s not. I mean it’s quick in the morning on a daily basis but this short blonde hair is totally high maintenance. Through my partnership with Sassoon this year, I’ve had regular salon trips to trim my hairline and bleach + tone touchups every 6 weeks or so.
Pre-appt smiles bc coffee
The crazy thing is, I’m almost always just between having it cut or needing a cut. I wouldn’t change it though, this short blonde hair is something that makes me unique, stand out, feel good, I love it.
I really love getting my hair done at Sassoon Toronto. Kimberly, who does my blonde is hilarious and I would love to have beers with her. She is also blonde, same age, has a beardy BF, and incredibly good at getting the perfect blonde.
Last week 2 things happened that were super great but stressful. One, I learned never to change my blonde and two, was in a commercial shot by 1188 (Sean’s company!).
At my Tuesday hair appointment, I told Kim that I wanted to go ash blonde. A little more ashy blonde, this on someone with long hair isn’t that big of a change. On short blonde, it is major. My hair is normally the ‘Baby Blonde’ you see below, ash is the light blonde in the bottom right. Big difference!
SO, Kimberly did what I asked and gave me a beautiful ash blonde. When I sat up from having the colour washed, I was like WHOA. No. Omg no. I didn’t like it. To anyone else, it was a cool ash blonde but to me, I looked like someone with brown hair! I don’t know what I was thinking changing my look. I’m never doing it again, and the week of a shoot fml. The team at Sassoon, especially Kimberly were so cool about it and we gave it a special rinse/wash with a product called ‘Malibu‘. It helps to rinse out the toner that made the bleach blonde turn to ash.
After I came home Sean said I looked different and I wasn’t happy with how I looked. I ended up texting the head colourist at Sassoon and making an appt for the next day at 9:30am. I woke up early the next day and bought a ton of pastries from the Portuguese bakery before yoga. After class, I went to my appt offering Kimberly a couple big boxes of croissants & egg tarts as a peace offering for having to come back/being annoying. Never hurts to be kind!
It wasn’t long before I left the salon with a beautiful white nordic blonde I’m used to. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
The title is a lyric from this video. Watched it for the first time when I posted this. After directing a music video this summer I look at things like this differently. I know she probably sang the song at a slow pace to get a specific frame rate that gives it a soft/slow feeling but she sings at the right pace in the video. I learned a lot shooting this w/ Jillea.
This week I’m directing a real estate shoot for a commercial and series of social ads. I love this type of work the most.
Follow your dreams. Don’t give up. Believe in yourself. You can do it. Push through. Work hard. Be nice. Don’t give up. Keep going. Great things take time and hard work. It will be worth it. You can do this. The road is long but there is joy in the journey. Savour each moment. Keep going. Try harder. Work harder. Believe in yourself. Try new things. Keep working hard. You’ll be glad you didn’t give up. You can do this.
This week has been pretty busy and I was sick for a couple days but I am really happy to be doing the work that I am. Last week I filmed a commercial as part of my ongoing project with Aeroplan. This week I’m directing a commercial for a new King West property. It’s gonna be so cool! Next week I’m on set for a feature film. You have no idea how many times I say to myself ‘THIS IS MY LIFE!”.
Last weekend on my way home from New Orleans I popped into the Iris Photobooth at the MSY Airport. I’d seen these booths on the internet and really wanted to give it a try. I thought the company was owned by LinkedIn but I have since learned it is not. The pop-up headshot station is marketed to LinkedIn users for new profile photos. Amazing idea if you ask me.
Photos are $20 for 6 photos including retouching and you get 1 hi-res download. I unlocked the remaining 5 for $5. I also did 2 sessions because I love having my photo taken! 😝
I think the photos turned out really good despite the fact that my hair wasn’t done, I did my makeup in the car, and had rushed to the airport. The lighting is super bright, almost better than a human headshot setup. (Sorry photographers, the robots are coming!) You can edit the photos right in the booth before saving in a FaceTune kinda way (smoothing, remove blemishes, whiten teeth etc).
If you’re looking to get some new photos done in Toronto there’s a booth at Ryerson near YD Square or you can catch them at airports around the USA. See locations here. I would love to be able to book it for a day at our office. I think I’ll pop into the Ryerson one next time I’m on the area. I had been meaning to get a couple photos for ages and this was SO EASY.
OK THAT’S ALL FOR TODAY OFF TO GET MY HAIR DONE BYE!
I’ve always loved this quote and on my first draft of this post, the title was ‘That idea is stupid’ because those words were the motivation to write this story down. Also, I know there’s a lot of ‘fake’ Einstein quotes so I hope he actually said this!
Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.
– Albert Einstein
A long, long time ago I got a job at a Canadian media station. Most the girls there were not particularly nice to me. From what I gathered I was the weird internet girl and they didn’t like me. That’s ok, I’ve always been a little different and danced to the beat of my own drum.
The boss I was hired by believed in me and my weird internetness. I was doing something unique and it was 2009, the start of mainstream social media. I was excited to learn from him and work together making cool internet as a team. Then he left for another job. My new boss had been there for a lonnnnnng time. Like before the internet long time. He was NOT into my ideas and along with the girls, thought I was weird.
One meeting I suggested they put hashtags on tv screens while a show was on and he said “that idea is stupid“. Well, we all know how that turned out, don’t we…
A couple years later I worked a full-time job as a Director at an agency. We were planning a big event for the launch of a new vodka flavour. I knew about this cool social media printer setup that would print any Instagram post with a pre-determined hashtag to a little paper that was also a sticker. I’d followed this company since it’s Kickstarter and knew it was finally available for hire. In a meeting I recommended it and everyone loved the idea. I priced it out and we had to fly in the guy and the four printer machines from NYC and put him up for a night in a hotel. It was kinda expensive but compared to the entire event not thaaaaaat much. In the next meeting, my idea was on the chopping block. I fought like hell to keep it on. Pleading that it would be the coolest thing and social media feeds narcissism, meaning everyone will want cute photos of themselves to take home. Thanks to that idea and the printer the event was a HUGE success, trending in Toronto then Canada for most of the night.
Moral of the story
Don’t let what someone else says stand in your way.You might be able to see something they just can’t visualize it because you’re ahead of the game. Go with that. Go with your gut, believe in yourself. Put your ideas out there. Don’t be afraid to speak up.
You never know how big your idea will be until you put it out there.
I’m so excited for this month. I love doing Christmas things like baking and getting the tree with Sean and Emily. I love Christmas music! I can’t wait to take the trip of a lifetime w/ my mum. Next week I’m shooting a fun video I already can’t wait to share. Feeling grateful to be starting the month in New Orleans and ending it in New Zealand. It’s been 7 years since I’ve seen ANY of my family and 18 years since I’ve seen most of them! Looking forward to making lots of memories this month. Flying home tomorrow and can’t wait to see my bf!
With love from New Orleans!
About Casie Stewart
Casie Stewart is a Canadian writer, director, and entrepreneur. She’s an award-winning content creator and expert in digital. During her decade-long career in media, she’s been named Canadian Screen Award Winner (Voice Pioneer), Best Travel Blog, and Top 30 Lifestyle Blogs in Canada. Casie has been a keynote speaker at SXSW, NXNE, TEDx, and spoken at YouTube Canada and the United Nations of Canada. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend and loves summer weekends at the cottage when she’s not travelling around the world.