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Thoughts on Graduating: Find Something You Love

Thoughts on Graduating: Find Something You Love

Last week I spoke at the graduation for Conestoga College. There were 15 programs graduating and hundreds of students. I got to wear a gold cape as a ‘special guest’. I checked the colour of the cape before the event and came prepared with gold shoes. It was pretty cool!

The top photo above is me with Conestoga College president John Tibbits at the presentation of my Alumni Award last year. I was in shock when I found out I’d been nominated for the Premiere’s Award then Conestoga surprised me with an Alumni Award. [The highest award from a college delivered by the president!]

This isn’t the kind of award you can apply for, and I am so honored to be recognized. I took my mum, and her BFF (aka my second mum & Fairy Godmother!) to the ceremony. We had a great time!

I spoke at the graduation for Conestoga College. Scroll for some thoughts on life, career, and what to be when you grow up. If ever!
Pat Hope, Me, Mum

Looking Back

I’ve spent the last decade working in social media as the industry grew and developed. I’ve had my blog for 14 years. When I went to Conestoga College for Marketing, social media was not invented. Blogs were not invented, there was no Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook. I was into marketing as soon as I knew what it was. I chose to study it in college because I had a *feeling* the internet would be something big. SMART THINKIN’ EH!

Honestly, in college, I used to skip class and I hardly ever bought textbooks. I didn’t have much money in college or university, but I always did the work. I worked well in groups when I was the leader, I liked writing, I was really into presentations. I didn’t really know what I wanted to be when I left Conestoga College, so I went to university, in Australia. I liked business but I had no clue about a job. I needed to escape and find myself.

When I finished school, I wanted to work in fashion, something I was passionate about. I did that for a few years and also worked in tech. I was a promo model and a tv/film background extra. I did a lot of jobs to get to where I am today and a big part of my journey comes from taking chances.

I followed my gut. Believed in myself. I took the road less traveled and it really made a huge difference. I’ve always done things my own way, a little different, and been kinda weird, but as I’ve gotten older THOSE ARE MY BIGGEST STRENGTHS.

My advice:

If you’re younger than me and graduating this year, or in a job that’s not your giving you life, don’t worry. You have the power to change your path. Your life is YOUR movie and you’re the director. Take charge of it. We live in a world where technology is driving innovation and new industries are emerging all the time.

You can’t control the cards you are dealt but you decide how to play them.

You ALWAYS have a choice in how to react and what you do with every situation. I wrote a post a while back around the thought that there’s nothing wrong with Monday, Monday doesn’t suck, you just hate your job. You have the power to change your situation. You got this. Change your attitude, change your life.

My Advice:

  1. Find something you love and go confidently in that direction.
  2. Do something each day that brings you closer to your dream.
  3. Learn as much as you can about the thing you love, be the best at it.

If you’re looking for something else to scroll, read this post on my advice to the graduating class when I was inducted into my high school hall of fame.

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Travelling Europe w/ Telus Easy Roam

Travelling Europe w/ Telus Easy Roam

May was a bit of a crazy month! I touched down in Spain, France, Germany, and Switzerland. Had an amazing press trip in Spain, went to Cannes Film Festival, Collision Conference, Lift&Co Expo, was in a fashion show, and gave the graduation address at Conestoga College. Today I’m writing this from the cottage in Muskoka and after a few days in the woods, I feel back to my old self again.

I am so incredibly thankful to work with a partner like Telus. During my whole trip, I never once missed an email, text, or phone call because I didn’t have data or a working phone. I also always carry a spare phone battery while I’m on the road (I like this Mophie one). I look forward to the moment my plane lands and I get that familiar text from Telus that saying “Welcome to [insert country]. You have Easy Roam.” After long flights and meals on the go, it’s comforting!

With Telus Easy Roam you can access your Canadian data plan from and you pay a daily fee to access the data in 190+ international destinations. Honestly, as an entrepreneur, the $12/day is so worth it to not be constntly hunting for wifi to share my adventure on social or reply to work email. Telus even has Cuba on their country roster which is so great, I can’t wait to plan a trip there over the winter. [You might remember when I went there last time and had NO SERVICE.]


I love being in transit.

Photos from Cannes Film Festival France

I really loved Spain and want to go back to explore more. Read my post on our Spain trip here.

Next week I’m heading to Vancouver for the Telus Creator Summit with the Canada-wide group of Telus Ambassadors. I can’t wait! I went last year and it was heaps of fun, plus we created some really cool content in their studio and volunteered to help out a local organization benefitting youth.

I’ll be sharing our whole adventure on IG and Twitter and doing a wrap-up post here after.

For more information on US & International roaming with Telus, visit the Telus website at telus.com.

Have an amazing day!

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Telus influencer partner program, get to know Casie Stewart. I've been working with Telus for 9 years and I'm part of their current Telus Partner program. Read about all my Telus adventures here or visit their website to see how they're helping communities across Canada through their #GiveWhereWeLive program. 


 

Wine Touring in Spain: Get to Know Rueda

Wine Touring in Spain: Get to Know Rueda

In May I went on a press trip to Spain hosted by D.O. Rueda (Denomination of Origin Rueda) wine region and Glo Communications.

DO Rueda Wine Tour Crew

We drank heaps of wine, explored Spanish cuisine, ate lots of tapas, met great people and explored a few historic sites. It was my first time visiting Spain and I was lucky to travel with a great group including Jen Kirsch, Jess Glover, wine expert Konrad Ejbich, and wine podcaster Matthew Cauz.

I loved learning more about wine, touring vineyards, meeting winemakers, and learning how their wines are made. I’m not a wine expert but I definitely know more than when I left and sampled my fair share along the way!

We went to 13 wineries and countless restaurants over the course of the week and I’m sure I’ll be sharing stories about the trip for a lifetime. In this post, you’ll find some of my favorite moments including beautiful wineries and unforgettable experiences.

On the first night, we met for a great dinner at Lobo 8 in Madrid and tasted wines from the D.O. Rueda that paired with our meal. We stayed at Hotel Ibis Styles, a cute boutique hotel in the heart of Madrid that was walking distance from just about everything.

Rueda, located in Castile and Léon, is about 2hr northwest of Madrid and comprised of 72 municipalities in the provinces of Valladolid, Segovia and Avila.  Rueda is the only region that specializes in white wine and is a leader in the commercialization of quality white wines.

Segovia

On our first full day, we ventured to Segovia, a historical town centered around a Roman aqueduct with 160 massive arches. I absolutely LOVED it there!

Right beside the base of the aqueduct is a famous restaurant Meson de Candido where we were served a traditional meal from the area of Segovia suckling pig. Next, we took a great walking tour to the aqueduct and visited at Alcázar de Segovia castle. This castle inspired Walt Disney to create Cinderella‘s castle at Disneyworld.

Recommended places to visit in Segovia:

Valladolid

We left Segovia to spend the next three days in Vallodolid about an hour north. Before visiting our first vineyard, we had a wine tasting at the DO Rueda office to learn about the region and to get familiar with local wines.

The vineyards of Rueda specialize in the production and development of their 1000-year-old indigenous grape variety Verdejo (a top-selling white wine in Spain).

The wines’ from this region have a taste profile more complex than Pinot Grigio and a great substitute if you’re into Sauvignon Blanc. High elevations and gravelly stone soils here allow the Verdejo grapes to ripen by mid-September and develop deep aromas and flavors resulting in dry, fresh wines that are food-friendly and accessible. The vineyards are about 600-700 meters above sea level keeping temperatures cooler, even during hot summers, which maintains the acidity Rueda wines are known for.

Recommended places to visit in Valladolid:

  • El Hilo de Ariadna – Take a virtual tour of this beautiful underground labyrinth cellar on their Facebook page here. Had a great lunch here!
  • Campo Eliseo – stunning winery inside an old house, lots of history here. Tasted wine with the winemaker!
  • Hermanos Del Villar orodecastilla.com award-winning vineyard
  • Gabi Garcia Restaurant – we had an amazing meal here!
  • Bodegas Palacio 1894 – a major Spanish winery that is absolutely stunning! This was our last spot and I was so in love with this place.
  • Bodegas Emina – This winery had a pretty big selection and was very modern in design. They also make a nice rosé!
  • Bodega Javier Sanz – Five generations of winemakers who have continued the tradition for more than 150 years.
  • Jose Pariente – This winery is all female owned AND run by women. I feel like you could tell, it was so beautiful!
  • Bodega Museo Ontañón – we had a great time here tasting all their wines. They also make INCREDIBLE olive oil. It was my birthday when we were here and they surprised me with a cake! Amazing venue too.

As you can see there was a lot to take in! I have another post next week outlining the wines from Rueda you can get in Canada through the LCBO and wine agents.

I highly recommend checking out the D.O. Rueda if you’re planning a trip to Spain. It’s a great place to visit with girlfriends, a significant other, or even to plan a wedding!

Vineyard in Spain: Get to know the D.O. Rueda wine region, home to the best white wine in Spain.
Vineyard in D.O. Rueda

Thank you to the whole team at D.O. Rueda and GLO Communications for organizing an amazing trip.

See more of updates from our adventure in Spain on my IG Story Highlight here!

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Image result for do ruedaImage result for glo communications

CBD: What Works For Me

CBD: What Works For Me

I’ve been asked about CBD a bunch over the past few months so I’ve finally put down some thoughts. This post is IN NO WAY medical, I am not a professional, this my personal experience. You should 100% consult some kind of professional before trying something for medical purposes. On the other hand, if you are already familiar with the cannabis plant or have been self-medicating for some period of time, you’ll enjoy this!

The photo above is from Sugar High Love Stoned and I bought the sweater while I was writing this post. 🤗

I’ve tried a bunch of products and these are my favorites. There are HEAPS of products out there, my recommendation is to get any cannabis product from somewhere credible or recommended by a trusted friend.

A lot of beauty, health, food products are coming out claiming to have cannabis or CBD, where it could be low-grade CBD or hemp seed oil. You can also get help derived CBD products, which can be confusing. My friend Ama Scriver wrote a great piece on cannabis and the beauty industry for healthline.com here.

CBD To Calm Down + Focus + Sleep

Aurora CBD Liquid Gels

Product: Small gel capsules, each with 8.5mg of CDB and 0.3mg of THC. You can find them at Nova Cannabis on Queen, OCS, or through your accredited Licenced Producer. They look like mini Advil.

Thoughts: These are great. The THC content is pretty low (0.3mg) so they don’t make me high, just relaxed. I find they’re good when I want to sit down and get work done. Also good for social situations that often give me anxiety or doing activities at home, they’re good anytime tbh. Sean and I have been taking them for a couple of weeks.

Charlottes Web CBD Juul Pod

Product: I ordered a Juul starter kit with the vape and 4 pods from vapevine.ca a couple of months ago. I was keen to try cannabis in the vape and found pods available in Canada from Birch & Fog. They have both CBD & THC. I ordered Charlottes Web, a non-psychoactive, 280 mg CBD Juul compatible pod.

Thoughts: Cool. Kinda like CBD micro-dosing. Handy to have around, not super strong. I love my Juul and keep the CBD pod around for a little dose of chill throughout the day.

Twisted Extracts CBD Jelly Bomb

Product: Fruit gummy with 8 x 10mg doses of CBD. They come in pineapple and peach. They’re currently sold out on Birch & Fog but you can use this link for $10 off your first order from mykush.ca.

Thoughts: These are good! Tasty little lego-like brick with 8 squares. Each dose is 10mg CBD. Good for pain management, sleep, or if feeling stressed.

Dried Flower CBD

In France, we found a CBD shop near our place and got some dried flower. It looks and smells like regular cannabis (w/ THC) but it won’t get you high. Cannabis is not legal in France and we were there for 8 days so this was a nice substitute.

If you’re keen to try CBD dominant strain, Leafly has a list of their top 10 as voted by their community here.

CBD For Skin, Aches, Pains

iMi CBD Body Medicine

Product: Highly concentrated, vegan, handmade topical cream you can put anywhere on your body. It has a light scent of shea butter and contains 50ml medical grade CDB isolate. Also contains grapeseed extract, vitamin e, avocado oil, jojoba oil, and apricot kernel oil. Good for anti-aging, scars, pain relief, or sensitive areas.

Thoughts: I am obsessed with this cream, it’s so good. Not smelly, feels great on the face. I like to put it on at night and use my jade roller & gua sha. I find it also reduces inflammation in my carpal tunnel.

CBD Magic Stick

Product: This stick is for all your aches and pains. It smells like Tiger Balm and contains 30mg CBD in a 2oz rub on balm. It includes all natural ingredients, is paraben-free, cruelty-free, and THC free.

Thoughts: Ordered this from Birch & Fog. I have been rubbing it on my feet days where I did a lot of walking and it calms them down to calm them down. Also neck, shoulders, hands. It’s also good for aches, pains, arthritis. You can rub on the stomach if you have cramps. It does smell like Tiger Balm so I only use it at home. Do not put near eye area!


Over the last year, I’ve been prescribed cannabis and CBD for my shoulder (collarbone) and previous injuries. I also like CBD oil for pain/anxiety/sleep but I haven’t quite got a favorite one yet. I’m keen to try some of the products from Calyx Wellness.

You can be referred to a cannabis clinic by a doctor or visit ocannabisclinic.com to make an appointment to speak to a nurse via video chat. The clinic will register you with a Licenced Producer (LP) and you can order products directly from them online.

If you have any questions please ask an expert or me, and if I don’t have the answer, I’ll find it for you. 🙏🏼

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Make a Path Leave A Trail – National Trail Day w/ Tilley

Make a Path Leave A Trail – National Trail Day w/ Tilley

This week I joined Tilley and a bunch of friends to clean up a Toronto trail. We each got to pick them out a new Tilley hat before the event and I chose the Charlie Fedora Straw hat. I am obsessed with it!

This photo of Andrew and I basically sums up our relationship. LOL. 🤣I can 100% imagine what we were chuckling about. I love events like this, we were doing good for the environment, everyone got new hats, and it was a chance to spend quality time with friends. Attending media events you never really know who is going to be there but luckily, there’s almost always have someone there I’ve been wanting to hang out with!

Andrew and I went to Thailand with Contiki a few years back and have done some other cool stuff. If you’re not familiar with Andrew, aka Gunnarolla, he is a VERY talented creator. Find him on YouTube or hosting Nom Voyage on Travel Channel.

Today is National Trails Day and Tilley is encouraging everyone to get out and Clean a Trail. Seriously though, you can clean a trail anytime. This is the only earth we have and we all need to do our part to clean the environment.

Clean a trail but make it fashion.
Elise, Brigitte, Casie

Thanks, Tilley for bringing us together to do some good!


Today, Emily are heading out along the West Toronto Railpath to do a little cleanup and ride bikes. I’m on the hunt for a couple of garage sales in the neighborhood! Yay, spring!

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The Legit Lady Podcast: Innovate or Die

The Legit Lady Podcast: Innovate or Die

I’m on another podcast! In this episode of the Legit Lady Podcast, I join host Julie Federman to talk about my life and career path. I talk about my entrepreneurial spirit, the importance of innovation, and the power in believing in yourself. I also love that I am episode #18, a number which has a lot of numerical significance in my life. I think you’ll enjoy listening to this!

Give it a listen on iTunes


About The Legit Lady Podcast

This podcast features women who are “nailing it” in life. From artists to professionals, they’re sharing unfiltered real talk and tough life lessons. The Legit Lady Podcast is a platform for impressive women to inspire the world. Hosted by Julie Federman.

One of my fav episodes is where Julie chats with BRIONY, an extremely talented artist (and friend!). Listen to her episode and subscribe here!

One of my fav pieces, by Briony.
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Thank you, Julie, for asking me to be on your show and hosting me at your place! It was so lovely to sit down and chat and meet you IRL. Here's to many more episodes and inspiring women around the world! 

BABE YOU’RE MAGIC!

BABE YOU’RE MAGIC!

This month has been one of the most exciting OF MY LIFE. Six hours after I landed from the press trip in Spain, I walked in the @Fitzroy #BabeYoureMagic fashion show with an INCREDIBLE group of power women. 36hr later I was en route to @festivaldecannes! In other news, adding a new @imdb credit to my roster for my role in the film #Astronaut that will be coming out soon. Ahhh!

I am so behind on blog life but I’m hoping this weekend to really, actually, get everything documented. One of the reasons I started this blog was an attempt to keep more memories. It’s easy to forget everything you do if you don’t write it down.

I’m so excited about what’s coming down the pipeline and all the joy life brings. Here’s some amazing photos from the Fitzroy fashion show.

Dress: @forloveandlemons ⠀MUA: @hairbyvanessa Photos by Scott Perreira

 


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And now back to your regularly scheduled programming…

It’s been a few wild weeks! Hard to believe we’re halfway through 2019. I’ve been away for most of May and also managed to model in a fashion show and attend the world’s largest tech conference. It’s been a lot of work, long days, and filled with lessons but I wouldn’t change it for anything.

I’ll be back to regularly scheduled blogging after this weekend. I need to catch up with my life, it’s been moving fast for weeks! I’ve got heaps of photos and stories from my adventures and I’m excited to share them with you. I got some great news that Astronaut, the feature film I am in is going to start posting behind the scenes content ahead of the release. Ahhhh!

Segovia, Spain + wine tour in the DO Rueda Region outside Madrid

Had a few great days at the cottage for getting caught up on writing, reading, and relaxing. I spent more time gardening than I thought I would but I feel rejuvenated. Here’s to a great week!

With love from Muskoka,

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5 Cannabis Podcasts to Elevate Your Knowledge

This week an article I wrote for the Twisted Extracts blog went live. My relationship with the brand grew over the last couple of months after they sent me a few of their edibles to try. I completely fell IN LOVE with the Twisted Extracts CBD gummies and CBD caramels. I found they really chilled me out and helped me be calm/focussed, without getting high. I ordered a bunch with my own money when the samples ran out!

5 Cannabis podcasts to elevate your knowledge. Twisted Extracts blog written by Casie Stewart.

This blog post includes 5 podcasts by talented Canadians that will inform you about what’s going on in the cannabis industry, legalization, benefits of the plant, and ways to consume. Within each podcast, you’ll find stories by interesting people from a wide spectrum of backgrounds and learn how they got into the weeds. Each show is hosted by someone I know or have met and can vouch for their knowledge of the cannabis space and passion for the plant.

If you’re keen to try a CBD edible, use this link to get $10 off your first order of Twisted Extracts. I’m quite keen on these Cara-Melts and they’re $13 for a pack of 8, containing 8x10mg CBD. Any questions, lmk!

Canadian Cannabis Week is coming up at the start of June and I’ll be covering the conference. If you were following me this week, you’ll know I LOVE CONFERENCES. I also have a giveaway coming up with a few tickets to attend, so if you’re interested, keep an eye out!

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HideSeek: Real Life Recess

The other day, Cory Lee and I went to HideSeek, a “pop-up experience inspired by childhood nostalgia“.  We spent over an hour taking photos, changing outfits and laughing our heads off and got to meet the team behind the experience. It was heaps of fun. 

Casie Stewart, Cory Lee at HideSeek Instagram pop-up in Toronto. HideSeek Toronto has 15+ great spots to take fun photos for Instagram. It's running until June 2nd, 2019. See blog for tickets & info.  - Casie Stewart
DYK I’ve never had Trix or Lucky Charms?! Suer fun to take so many photos with my girl Cory Lee. See her post on thefashionset.net.

I’ve been to a bunch of Instagram friendly pop-ups over the last year (Happy Place, Museum of Ice cream, Museum of Illusions) and this was was my favourite one in Canada so far. There are 15 installations with multiple photo ops in each. Grab your BFF, kid, parent, partner, or a date and go back in time. I have heaps of photos from the experience so if you follow me on Instagram (HERE) you’ll see some of these rolling out over the next few weeks.

HideSeek is at 305 Dundas St. West. Toronto and you can find them on Instagram at @gohideseek. It’s running until June 2nd so you have a little while to get in on the action.

Visit gohideseek.com for tickets & info.

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The Food God at The Food District

The Food God at The Food District

When you get invited to have lunch with Kim Kardashian’s BFF, you go! A couple weeks ago I joined a suite of media babes for a late lunch at Square One Mall’s soon to be epic food market. The almost 40,000 sq ft Food District opens later this month is now OPEN and aims to provide shoppers with an elevated culinary experience.

There’s a few downtown Toronto favourites like Pie Commission, Hale Coffee, La Carnita, Sweet Jesus, and other options including Italian, Indian, bbq, Danish, and DIY cupcakes. There’s also a fresh flower shop. The space was still under construction during our visit but it’s now open. For more info about the Food District, check out Blog TO and read about the opening on Toronto Sun.

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The hardest part of writing is writing.

You have to write the thing. You have to sit down at our computer and type your fingers along each key forming words into sentences. It sounds easy but it’s hard if you ‘ve been thinking about it for a while and you know you can do it, but time is running out. You’re already a day late and you don’t want to hand it in at the end of the day tomorrow. All you need to do it sit down and not get distracted. Drink some water. Sit up straight. Open a window. Check the fridge. Sit back down. Your anxiety grows to form a mountain range that now you have to climb over before you reach the spot where you can just sit down, and write the thing. Sit down, start writing.

Sometimes just writing about writing helps the worlds start flowing.

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