There’s a lot of resistance in me… a lot.

Change makes me anxious and any positive lifestyle changes seem to really drive me b*tsh*t crazy.

Case in point: I’ve been reading a lot about the evils of sugar recently. The stuff really is poison. I don’t eat much of it but as soon as I decided to cut back, I started to get the twitch… you know, the twitch that only six chocolate chip cookies could calm. Six!

how?? source: globe and mail

When my friend told me she’s been minimizing her dairy and wheat intake and feeling great, I made some crack about maximizing mine and then ate an entire box of mac and cheese at home (I had to go out of my way to buy the stuff at the health food store).

And don’t even get me started on exercise…


In War of Art, Steven Pressfield states that the more resistance we feel towards something, the more important it is to our soul’s evolution. The more we run, the more we need to stay. Here’s my question: HOW?!

Maybe I should keep reading the book…



mulling and rolling…

Ryan’s “napping” in the room next to me. This roughly translates to flipping onto his tummy, shimmying around, getting upset, crying loudly, and me flipping him over. Repeat.

I’m having a bad hair day (damn you, humidity!). Yup, it’s one of those days… but we’ll power through.

Steven Pressfield was on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday last week and I’ve been mulling over something they talked about:

“Rule of thumb: The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution,

the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.”

(from his book, The War of Art)

Essentially: the more you need it, the harder it’ll be to do. Well, Mr. Pressfield, I’ll give you that one for sure.

When it comes to parenting life, what I resist the most is letting go and rolling with the punches. I want to embrace the ebb and flow of Ryan’s naps, the weather, and life in general. I know it’s (probably) a more enjoyable way to live. But somehow I always end up meticulously counting the minutes between his naps and planning the next day, week, year of my life.

But like Pressfield, kids are pretty awesome teachers of lessons that are hard to learn. There’s very little chance my five-month-old will do things my way, on my schedule. He’s got his own rhythm and so does life.

So as Ryan sleeps (finally), I’ll continue mulling until one day, hopefully soon, rolling will become easier.



stepping away and buttery treats…

It’s 10:54 on back-to-work Monday… back to work for everyone at my office except me. I’m still in my PJs eating a delicious apple. Mat leave is strange.

It was hard for me to walk away from the job I’ve moulded over the last ten years. And while I’m excited about the year ahead, it’s still weird to think that someone else is in my office right now, sitting in my chair, typing away at my computer… it’s amazing how territorial I can be especially considering this job was just supposed to pay the bills while I was in school. I graduated five years ago.

Serendipitously, last night I finished Finding Me in France by Bobbi French. My favourite lessons always come from books and last night was no exception. French writes,

“If I had to narrow it all down into one piece of wisdom it would be this: sometimes you have to step away from the many things you have to do to find the one thing you want to do.”



P.S. I made goureges! Butter + cheese + flour… what’s not to love?! Here’s the recipe from my good friends DGL and Mi:

Gougeres… yum!


The Chapters in Bloor West is one of my very favourite places in the city. I often spend hours there leafing through the pages of new books and magazines on quiet Sunday afternoons.


The locale also holds a special place in my heart because it’s where I had my first real date. Back in 1990-something when it was still the Runny theatre, a boy took me there to see Titanic. I knew he was special when he sat through three hours of overly dramatic Leo without complaint.


Yes, the theatre-turned-bookstore holds a special place in my heart and so you can imagine how heartbroken I was when I learned that it’s scheduled to close after the holidays. Truth is, I still am. 😦

I was trying to think of something meaningful to end with, to wrap this post up with a nice bow… but sometimes it’s equally important to just “share what happens but hold off on what it means” (Mark Nepo).

Happy  Sunday!


nothing to prove

Here is my second personal commandment:

there is nothing to prove. all that’s left to do is enjoy.

This one I’m taking from Rob Bell, who I was introduced to yesterday on Oprah’s Super Soul Sundays. Like for Bell, this is the lesson that has taken me the longest to learn and I have to keep relearning it daily.

As your classic honour roll, teachers’ pet, valedictorian overachiever – even my blood type is A+ – I’ve struggled with the need to prove myself for a long time. I always wanted to be going places.

But I’ve learned that I’d much rather slow down so that I don’t miss a moment, linger so that I enjoy my days, and live a life full of wonder.

“I didn’t ask for success. I asked for wonder.”

Off to lie on the couch, nurse this cold and read Bell’s new book, What We Talk About When We Talk About God…

new books and holiday cups. distressed FX vanilla filter.
new books and holiday cups. distressed FX vanilla filter.

Happy Monday!


assume the best

The best kind of reading is rereading. Right now I’m rereading Happier at Home, Gretchen Rubin’s follow up to The Happiness Project, the book that started my blogging adventure.

In both books, Rubin outlines her 12 commandments – her 12 principles for living her best life. It got me thinking about my own.

So far, I’ve come up with one:

assume the best

I don’t, at least not yet. I almost always assume the worst. I’ve even tried to convince myself that assuming the worst is a good strategy because if the worst happens, I’ll be prepared and if doesn’t, I’ll be pleasantly surprised. WRONG. In reality, you overreact to the worst and are only half present for the best – the other half is looking over your shoulder for the next disaster (something Brene Brown calls “foreboding joy”).

And you squander all of the moments in between.

So I’m trying the opposite on for size. I already prefer how it feels.

What are your personal commandments?


toes still present but baby belly threatening to take over


Today is my first of many Mondays off.

It’s been a quiet day, a day to be introspective and scrub my soul.

I’ve been reading Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly and, like any great book, it hit a nerve.

It forced me to temporarily push passed my vulnerability and my perfectionism and roll out my yoga mat for the first time in seven months.

So here I am… in sweats, au naturel, growing belly and all. Vulnerable but joyous.


“Because true belonging only happens when we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world…” ~ Brene Brown


burn out…

Last time I attended a pretty amazing Q&A with Brett Wilson.

I have also been devouring his book, Redefining Success: Still Making Mistakes.

Tonight, after some 15 days straight of work (yup, including weekends) and most of them overtime, I left work in a haze. I was so absolutely out of it that, thankfully, all I was able to think about is how ridiculously I have been living recently.

I have been heading FULL steam ahead towards burnout. Silly Maya.

It took me awhile to realize it this time because I’ve built my body up to a healthy, strong state and emotionally, I’ve been kicking it. But burnout is burnout and it gets everyone eventually if you don’t change your habits.

But back to Brett and how he handsomely fits into all of this (he is quite handsome!).

When I picked up his book, I was really expecting a guide on how to become super stellar at business. It’s not that, at least not really. It’s a guide on how to become super stellar at life from someone who had to make some mighty mistakes to figure it out.

I think everyone should read this book but for now, here’s one of the main takeaways: life is about so much more than work and your career.

  • Health must come before everything else because without it, there is nothing. 
  • Relationships must come directly after because without them, nothing really matters. 
  • After that, you decide, but somewhere near the top should be community engagement, giving back, or just generally, being a kickass person.

Without those elements, there is no true success. Without those elements, Maya is a crazy person.

So that’s it, I’ve stopped cold in my tracks before it got messy.  Now I’m redefining my non-negotiables, my priorities, my “be the most stellar Maya I can be” list. I encourage you to do the same.

I leave you with something my partner in crime said that really stuck,

What do you want to remember about your 20s [30s, 40s, etc] – that you worked late every night or that you worked a bit, saw your friends and family, had fun, felt great, etc?


Thanks universe!

happier at home…

Whenever I find myself in a bit of a life pickle, I always seem to end up in the one place I know I will find answers: the bookstore. Somewhere in those millions of words, I know someone will have written something I need to read. So I wander amidst the shelves gently touching covers, reading sleeves, and leafing through pages. Without over thinking it, I try to let the book find me. And somehow, usually, it does.
Today I took my somewhat weary heart to my favourite bookstore, the Runnymede Chapters. There’s something about that place that I just love. Perhaps it’s the fact that I can still fondly remember my very first date at what was then the Runnymede Theatre. He took me to see Titanic. I was 14. It was lovely. 
But back to today… I wandered around Chapters killing time, pondering, and then I saw it. 
“Happier at Home” by Gretchen Rubin.
The sequel to the book that started this blog! A few paragraphs in, I stumbled upon this:
“Why, I often wonder, is it difficult to push myself to do the things that bring happiness? So often, I know what resolutions would make me happier, but still I have to prod myself to do them.”
And there it is, exactly what I’ve been wondering for a very long time. I feel the blogging itch coming back! 
That’s it for now… I’ve got pages and pages to read!

healthy on the cheap: thrive in 30


Truth: I have a bit of a crush on Brendan Brazier. He’s a vegan Ironman, general health-atarian, and founder of the amazing Vega products.

He has also written many books like Thrive Diet,  Thrive Fitness, Whole Foods to Thrive, etc.

But here’s why I’m writing about him on this Thrifty Thursday: Thrive in 30!

For absolutely free, you can access free videos of Brendan covering content from his Thrive books, such as:

  • How to combat stress using whole, plant-based foods and
    high net-gain nutrition
  • The whole food truth about protein, fats and carbs—
    and how balancing your diet will help you build a younger body
  • How you can alkalize your body’s pH to combat disease,
    improve sleep and lose weight
  • What superfoods to use to balance hormones,
    detoxify body or lower cholesterol
  • How to identify common foods that cause unexplained, mystery illnesses
  • How to use nutrition to strategically fuel your body so you’ll have greater endurance, maximize the return from your workouts and recover faster
  • Why nutrition, exercise and sleep are the secret
    to empowered mental health
  • Long-term strategies that will help you transform your health for life

It’s pretty darn amazing, and it doesn’t cost a penny. Not one.

What are you favourite healthy on the cheap tricks?

Happy tumbling & stumbling!