Day 377: Friday, Feeling Good

Friday, Fri-yay! Feeling good after closing out my first week as a FT employee! Yay! I only took an evening nap 2/5 days, haha. It’s been 5+ years since I was in a FT role but after working freelance for a while, I’ve got a good handle on time management. Always room for improvement tho! ?

Started a new show called The Arrangement on Amazon Prime and plan to watch a good chunk of it before Monday as I putter around the house and get ready for Monday.

Hope you’re having a great weekend!

Day 376: You Make Me Happy

you make me happy, casie stewart, toronto

This week has been good. I’m getting into a workflow and figuring it out as I go. Most days I get up at 7-7:30, go for a run at 8 am, do a short Peloton workout, then get ready to start work at 9:30. If I’m at my desk or working inside the whole day, I like to put on something I’ve not worn in ages and go for a walk. Sometimes it’s just around the neighbourhood, other days it’s a nice long walk with a friend.


The title of this post ‘you make me happy‘ is also a song also used in my latest video here. When I put on this jacket, it instantly made me smile. Made me think about how my clothes make me happy. So many of them have fond memories of a time or feeling. After spending 90% of 2020 at the cottage, one of the things I was really looking forward to was being home with my stuff. I love playing dress-up or sorting through things I haven’t worn in a while.

While the world around us is so different, I find great comfort in the familiar things. Might be my Taurus nature to love home so much. I don’t have many family heirlooms but some of my most treasured things are clothes worn by my parents or anything from nana.

Remember the other day when I mentioned Transitional Coat Season? Well, here we are again with another coat! I ordered this one 5+ years ago from one of my fav artists, Valfre in Mexico. It didn’t fit for years but I couldn’t bear to part with it, no matter how many times Sean said “you have too many coats“.

Glad to report she fits great now and Valfre is back in rotation. On the back, it says ‘Don’t Worry Be Happy‘ with a skeleton and fire-breathing dragon. The Levis’s I’m wearing here used to be all one colour, I dyed them with bleach last April. If you want to make a similar pair, check out this post from Day 36.

As I was taking photos, two ladies walked by, smiled, and said “you look like you’re having fun, love your jacket“. I smiled back, and we shared a little laugh, totally reminded me of hanging out with mum. I would call that a win for jacket of the day and a sign I should bring ‘er out more often.

Made a new Reel but you’ll have to watch it on IG by clicking here. It’s IG not me, they don’t play nice with bloggers anymore, we can’t embed posts.

you make me happy, casie stewart, toronto, considerate goods, levis
Mask is by Considerate Goods, Levis are hand dyed by ME

Day 375: Healthy Meals for Me

Ya girl is kinda exhausted! I took a nap after dinner and then went for a walk before the sun went down. Moving to FT from PT is definitely an adjustment. I enjoy the job but it’s just different being on for so many hours a day. I feel like WFH vs work in an office is a bit harder to handle. In an office you have camaraderie & water cooler chats, whereas being at home, it’s just you and the computer or Zoom-style meetings.

In other news, I’ve been testing out some new healthy meals and thought I’d share! As part of my fitness journey over the past two years, I’ve moved towards a more plant-based diet. I’ve been doing intermittent fasting to curb my late-night eats and trying to up my intake of fruits, veg, and fiber. Some meals I’ve been really enjoying are smoothie bowls and these high-protein, vegan breakfast patties from TMRW Foods. I also ordered their burger & ground products to try later this week. I find that I’m less tired when consuming fewer meat-based products and my skin feels better. ?

This dairy-free coconut yogurt from Liberté is also SO GOOD in a smoothie or bowl topped with fruit, creamy coconut oatmeal, and All-Bran buds. I love how beautiful smoothie bowls look and they are absolutely delicious as an afternoon snack!

That’s all for today, going to bed early so I can get a full 8 hours. Since getting an Apple Watch I’m committed to completing my fitness and sleep goals. I’m still running each morning and it’s been so nice having warmer temps. YAY SPRING!

Day 374: Transitional Coat Season

You know the season I mean? That Transitional Coat Season in spring where you can wear all your jackets that only work for temperature between 5-15 degrees celsius. Sean always bugs me about having too many coats and each year in the spring/fall I try to wear as many as I can to justify keeping them all. ?

This fur number was a gift from a friend and I’ve had it hanging up all winter waiting for a day when the temp was warm but still not hot. I will deff be wearing it a few more times because I had no idea how great it looks on camera, I LOVE the bright red collar & inside.

Today was a great day, peace out!

Day 373: Social and Culture

Today I started my new FT role at Funday Agency as Social & Culture Manager. My job is focused mostly on internal communications & operations relating to building company culture. Last year I came to the realization I didn’t want to work specifically in social media anymore. I was looking to expand and do more things related to general marketing. That beung said, it’s been 5+ years since I’ve worked FT and I expect there will be a *bit* of an adjustment.

Today’s lunch was provided by Do Rueda in Spain who sent over a delicious selection of Spanish tapas and wine to taste. I saved the wine for after work but tuned in for a lunchtime seminar with several sommeliers from the region. Back in 2019, I went on a press trip to Spain where we spent a week visiting 13 wineries in Do Rueda, Spain’s top region for verdejo & white wine. See those posts here!

Another great surprise today was the delivery of new blue light glasses from gry mattr, a new company from Joe Mimran (the founder of Joe Fresh). I picked this design on a whim without realizing they would look almost identical to my old fav glasses I wore when I first started Twitter (see small image here).

I had this same black & white photo as my Twitter image from 2009-2012. Back then, I used to wear glasses ALL the time and I absolutely love these new ones from gry mattr. Thanks Joe!

A BIG thank you to everyone who reached out via social or LinkedIn to congratulate me on my new gig. Excited for the future! Have a great week!

Day 372: Social and Culture Manager

Woke up with a killer toothache this morning and took an easy morning for my Advil and CBD to kick in. It was another beautiful day and I am loving the energy I get from this weather! I ended up taking an afternoon nap and felt nice and refreshed when I woke. Went for a nice walk to the grocery store to get supplies for the week. Sean is shooting something up north this week so I’m home by myself, which I don’t mind. ?

This week I am starting full-time at Funday Agency and I am so excited! I absolutely love working with this team so it was a natural progression to move from contract to FT. My role is Social & Culture Manager and I’ll be working on Funday initiatives, branding, and merch. This is a new role that was created just for me and I’m really keen to develop the Funday brand. One of the recent tasks my team completed was our first round of Funday supplies including notebooks, note cards, Sharpies, and stickers. They turned out so good.

Here’s to a great week! Sending sunshine!

Day 371: First Day of Spring!

Today is the first day of spring! Guys, we made it through the winter, congratulations!

I went to the garden center at Canadian Tire and cleaned up our patio. I finally planted all of the Pothos cutting I’d been propagating over the winter.

After my gardening expedition, I went for a nice long walk with Michelle and we had a drink on a patio for the first time in MONTHS. It was so lovely to be outside and enjoying the sun!

Day 370: Sunrise Cold Plunge in Lake Ontario

This morning I woke up nice and early and went to Humber bay part to meet some friends for a cold plunge in Lake Ontario. The sun was just coming up over the horizon and it was cold but beautiful. It was the first time IRL meeting Amy Shio, aka Les Best the wonderful woman who has been a big part in inspiring me to run daily.

Megan, Amy, Eric, Phil, and I ran into the water just after 7:30 am and stayed in for about 45 seconds. I wasn’t expecting the waves to be SO HIGH but it was still fun. When I came out of the water, it was so cold that part of my hair was FROZEN!

I reckon next time we’ll pick a spot that has less waves and rocks because it was a little scary! Hoping to go back in the water again next week.

Happy Friday!

Day 369: Wherever You Are, Be There Completely

Day 368: Think About Perspective

I do a petty good job of sharing positive stories, sunshine, smiley faces but let me remind you, once again, what you see on the internet is never the whole story. Some days are hard, messy, or just plain garbage. Life is hard and we are living through a deadly global pandemic. We’ve learned a lot after one year of this but that doesn’t make it easier on the day-to-day. I try to find joy in the little things, stand and face the sun, and get out fresh air to clear my head.

The past year has really taught me about perspective and I try to keep that in mind when I’m faced with it a challenge. No matter how much I try tho, I can’t help but feel sad or angry sometimes, both made more difficult if you’re tired. This week has been a mix of awesome and shitty, a real rollercoaster.

It’s important to remember that a bad day isn’t all days, you are strong, you can handle this. Take some deep breaths, a walk outside, or even take a little nap. There’s no sense in letting a bad day ruin everything and with each new morning, we have an opportunity to find some good in the day.

Today I was having a hard time when I decided to stop everything and go for a long walk. The air was cool but the sun was out, by the time I got back home, I felt better.

I love this reminder shared by Amy Shio on Instagram, a good one to keep.

Day 367: Making Fun Happen

Had a great run this morning and found some street art on the way home. Can you guess what I drew here? The sun of course! Love seeing people out here making fun happen.

I received a fabulous box from the tourism folks in Stratford, ON filled with all kinds of goodies from local retailers. It was so fun to open! [WATCH THE VIDEO HERE] I grew up in the 519 and Stratford has so many memories for me. We used to visit all the time with my parents and I spent few weekends going there for dance competitions.

To help support local businesses, they’ve created this lovely box filled with local Stratford treasures. Purchasing one is not only is a great gift, you’re supporting local shops in an Ontario tiny town. Check out @visitstratfordon on IG or visit their website to order. Each box is $100+HST (includes free shipping across Canada). My last visit there was in 2018 and I made a guide of things to do when you visit, in this post.

The shirt I’m wearing is my OWN vintage from 1989. I used to go to heaps of car shows w/ the family as a kid. I was playing with the mirror and found it hilarious to see my reflections multiply. ? Just’ making my own fun over here.

This week I also received a package I ordered from a childhood friend’s new biz, The Curator’s Shop. They created it during covid and ship boxed full of all kinds of luxury goods that make great gifts. I purchased the Hinza Tote, a green plastic, sustainable multi-use bag made from sugar cane, a renewable resource. For over 50 years these bags have been produced in Sweden.

Finished the day with a long walk from Junction downtown to Queen & Bathurst with Michelle. It was so sunny and I loved seeing random friends along the way. She had these photos made for me at Christmas and I just picked them up. So fun. I need to print more photos!

Day 366: Big Spring Energy

I’ve been waking up so early this week and I’m not sure if it’s Daylight Saving Time or general excitement. Knowing spring is around the corner has me feeling some kinda way and I’m working on a couple of projects that have me BUZZING.

Last year when I was off work for a couple of months, it made me think about life and what I truly wanted. I’ve been working in social media for so long and felt like I needed a change. I joined the Advisory Board at Hvr then took a contract with Funday Agency. I’ve been so inspired by the work I’m doing, it’s transferred to everything I do.

I spent years not being *truly* happy and I think this past year really gave me a chance to revaluate what matters. I reprioritized a few things and through that gained a new perspective on life. I am truly excited for the next year and what I might can accomplish.

Here’s to BIG SPRING ENERGY. ☀️? She’s ready to BLOOM!

Day 365: A Year of Cottage Living

Living in the woods for a year will change you.

I remember when I started dating Sean and spending time at the cottage, I dreamed of us running away to live in the woods. I’d eat healthily, build a garden, go for long walks, and letting my hair grow out.

Today marks one year since we packed up our essential items and moved up to the cottage to wait out the Covid-19 Pandemic. We thought it was a great opportunity to open the cottage a little early and get some jobs done around the property. We had no idea it would last this long.

The first few months were filled with online workout classes, dance with Ryan Heffington, and long runs outside through the woods. Over the summer I read a bunch of books, perfected my tan, and safely hung out on the water with cottage friends.

In August, I spent a week in the city and it was so nice to walk with friends, sit on patios, or hang in the park. I started a new job in August we both worked from the cottage for most of the fall. I was starting to miss home and good wifi, I wanted to get back to some kind of normal routine.

In December, we had our first family Christmas at the cottage complete with a tree, presents, and fireworks. Sean and I spent a nice 7-day stretch at the cottage the week before NYE. We came back to the city on January 1, 2021.

Sean spent most of January and February 2021 at the cottage alone or with Emily while she was doing home school. I wanted to spend some time at our house in the city, I missed my stuff, my closet, and the comfort of our space. I love the cottage but I also miss my old life and seeing friends, even at a distance, seeing them brings me so much joy.

Although the pandemic has been a tragic year for us all, I’m extremely grateful for a year of cottage living. I learned a lot about myself living up north, isolation in the city is one thing but isolation up north is even more distanced.

You have time to be with your thoughts, nature, your feelings. We learned to use what supplies we had on hand and I discovered a love for propagating plants.

Here’s hoping this summer we can have people over and enjoy lake life together. Miss you.

Day 364: One Full Pandemic Year

Sometimes it feels like, is anyone out there? You’ve been following my year but how has your year been? How are you doing? I’m here if you want to talk, text, email, or Tweet. It’s me on the other side of your screen.

Some days I feel good like I can handle this, I got it, I’m doing good. Other days I melt into the couch in loungewear wondering when the hell this will be over. I binge-watch shows and eat too many snacks. Then go to bed early, in my same clothes, and wake up hoping for a good day.

Day 1: Social Distancing was published on March 14, 2020, it’s been one full pandemic year. My biggest accomplishments have been growing my hair out, writing this blog, and surviving. Getting through this has been hard and just making it to Day 364 is an accomplishment, so man people aren’t with us today.

Although our old ‘normal’ seems a lifetime away, there are things to look forward to. As vaccines continue to roll out, and stores start to reopen, we’ll get back to some kind of normalcy. Yes, you still have to wear a mask and it might be sometime before we’re all vaccinated, but the days are longer, patios will open, and things will get better.

One thing we can all take from this is the joy of slower living, the hygge of having a space that feels cozy. How important it is to have best friends, or how a call from someone can turn your day around.

Some of the best times I has this year were long walks with friends or hanging out in the park. I have great memories with our cottage friends and spent lots of time reading on the dock. I’ve talked to mum almost every day and she always seems to have the right words for whatever mood I’m in. I’m grateful for Sean and us sticking through, despite the hard days and my occasional meltdowns.

Living up north for a year has brought its own challenges! For the first few months, I was on CERB and not working. It took a little time but I fully opened up into my creative self, started sewing, making things, propagating plants, working out heaps, and perfecting healthy recipes. Sean worked through the entire pandemic and only took a few days off around his birthday in August. The cottage is his happy place, a safe space, he feels most at home here. He’s run over 1,600 KM in the woods and loves to take daily breaks to chop wood with an axe, use his chainsaw, or wakeboard in the summer.

The cottage isn’t fully winterized but as of today, we managed to make it one full year! Even through winter! We had a few things break, a flood, loss of power, wifi issues, a few plumbing mishaps, a really pesky chipmunk, and now, a new water tank. Each time Sean was faced with an issue, although stressful, I admire his ability to find a solution to the problem and stay calm. I am less calm (through everything!) but I’m working on it.

If we can get through one year of a deadly global pandemic, we can do anything! Here’s to brighter (AND LONGER) days ahead. Thank you for reading and following my adventures (or lack of adventure haha). My hope is that one post or picture from the last year brought a smile to your face and made you feel less alone.

We’re all in this together. Hang in there!