my life

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Last month Kendra + I hosted our third (yes third!!) Sweet Happenings gathering. I was honestly humbled by the overall response + incredibly excited to welcome an entire room of new faces with unique perspectives. Our Spring gathering was inspired by Hygge, the Danish ritual of enjoying life’s simple pleasures – A ritual I was quite fond of whilst living in Scandinavia and a wonderful reminder to acknowledge ordinary, meaningful moments in the every day.

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We gathered in the beautiful space of Aviary Studio + mingled over deliciously crafted cocktails by Whiskey Muse. Reece prepared a gin, cucumber and rosemary cocktail along with a Whiskey, Orange + Vanilla syrup cocktail with subtle hints of ginger and chocolate. All of it – so good.

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As always, my favourite part of these events are listening to creatives talk about what they love. Their stories. The kind of stuff that gets them out of bed in the morning. As the conversation flowed through the room, I could’t help but smile. Here we had a room full of creatives all in attendance for the same reason – community. But their paths and perspectives so different yet the energy + connections that came about were truly inspiring.

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Our gorgeous blooms were created by Rogue Florist.

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An extra big thanks to all of our wonderful sponsors and to Andrea + Stella of Aviary Studio for allowing us to host in their beautiful space!  We’re excited to see where our gatherings will lead. To find out more about the event and attend one in the future, head over to the Sweet Happenings site.

Photography by: Jan Heuninck
Cocktails by: Whiskey Muse
Florals by: Rogue Florist
Venue: Aviary Studio




It’s mid-February – I realize I’m a tad late on this! January is usually a quieter month, but this year was quite the exception. I moved into a new place shortly after traveling what seemed the entire month of December.

I’m truly looking forward to a more relaxed few months ahead filled with loads of writing + posting here. There are a few travel posts coming your way, but before that, here’s what 2015 looked like and what I hope 2016 to be!

Highlights of the year (in no particular order):
+ My photograph published in National Geographic
+ Visiting friends on the East Coast
+ Trip home in the summer to my beautiful cousin’s wedding where I also introduced James to family and friends (and they loved him!!! of course ;)
+ Teaching my first design workshop to aspiring designers
+ My little sister making the trip to Vancouver. Twice this year !!
+ Running the Berlin Marathon with a new PB of 4:02
+ Exploring Italy and Spain with B
+ Hosting our second sweet happenings
+ Turning thirty; feeling more and more comfortable with who I am and what I want
+ Ending the year with most the wonderful Christmas trip to England. With us both being so far away from our families it meant a lot to finally meet the people you hear so much about. It was perfect in every way.

Here are a few intentions I have for the year ahead:

+ Continue with running. Another marathon, anyone?
+ Research in human-centered design
+ Spend more time writing here
+ Reading more for fun. Maybe even start a book club.. Interested ?
+ Enjoying more of the everyday
+ More time with my favourite people. Above everything else:)




On the way to pick up groceries last night I rang my mom knowing I’d catch her + the family in the midst of preparing for Thanksgiving. I secretly longed to hear the kiddies giggling at my dad’s silly jokes. And my sister inevitably interrupting mom + I to fill me in with some ridiculous story. (She’s kind of the best storyteller; everything seems a lot more comical from her perspective). I explained to mom that this year was different than the rest. I was missing everyone + home at a whole new level. She reassured me that I said the same thing last year. So internet friends, I declare no matter what, I will be at home next Thanksgiving. You hear that, Dad!? Make extra pie. Please. And stuffing. Mmm..

After the grocery store, James + I spent the evening preparing pies. And by preparing I really mean I was making one, big crumbly mess. Because I hate to admit defeat it took waking up this morning to a pathetic crust to start all over again. I granted myself a few minutes of complaining before reminding myself how lucky I was to be prepping a dinner for my dear ones here in Vancouver.

With Thanksgiving a favourite holiday of mine, I thought I’d prepare a small list of things I’m especially thankful for…

James – This guy; he’s something else.. The most patient, kind, and loving human I know. Sometimes I can’t believe how lucky I am to have him by my side. His smile is pretty wonderful, too;)

Family – They’re loud. Unique. Crazy. Opinionated. And full of so much love. I’m so, so thankful to be a part of your crazy gang, guys.

My dear friends, near and far – I wholeheartedly believe I was blessed with the best group of friends one could ever wish for. Though I may only see some of them once a year, they still hold a special place in my heart. And as they grow into adults + start families of their own I can’t help but love them even more…

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have the most wonderful day with your loved ones.



image via andrewthomaslee

Last month Kendra + I hosted our second Sweet Happenings event. I will admit, it was put together very last minute as both of us were traveling this summer and confirming a date was rather tricky. But I’m happy we decided to just go for it:) This time around, we extended the invitation to our peers on social media and I think that’s where, for me, it felt much more exciting! We hadn’t met most of the people in person so this event gave everyone the opportunity to really get to know one another beyond the square frame of Instagram.


We structured the afternoon around a simple, Parisian-inspired spread + conversation. We displayed two cards, each with a question we wanted everyone to ponder; “How does being a part of a creative community influence your daily life?” and “As creatives, do you feel a responsibility to contribute something bigger than yourself?” The second question really resonated with me as this past year I’ve felt more of an urge to create more meaningful work so I was anxious to hear how the others would answer.

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The beautiful centerpieces were designed by Rogue Florist, who kindly sponsored our event! Love Your Mornings provided our guests with a takeaway of healthy cookies + the most delicious coconut, cashew and mocha bars (they tasted like almond joys but better…yum!!!)


The passion + talent that filled the garden was amazing. Listening to everyone talk about their current projects; different perspectives on living in Vancouver; the ups + downs of starting your own business; and of course, my favourite, social responsibility was the best part! I really do enjoy the discussion + new perspectives this event brings about.

We had such a brilliant time hosting that a part trois is in the works before the end of the year!!! Stay tuned for more info in the upcoming weeks!

thank you heaps + heaps to those who help make this possible!


Photography by: Martin Mazaar
Florals by: Rogue Florist
Cookies + healthy treats: Love your Mornings
Styling +  Individual floral arrangements: Kendra Murphy for Kit + Forage
Art Direction + Styling + Menu : Angela Grayce Design

heyyyy guys! How’s your summer going!? It feels a little strange to be writing in this space after so long, but I’m hoping this means I’ll be making more time for this corner of the internet again! I’ve missed it. There’s been quite a bit going on behind the scenes. My 9-5 has left me experimenting with various avenues of design. And to be honest, by the time I leave the office, I have no desire to be in front of the computer. With that being said, I’m enjoying the process of figuring all of it out. More on that soon;)

But for now, here are a few snippets of what’s making me smile as of lately:

+ coffee dates + chats with my incredible guy;) eaaa – he’s pretty great, guys!
+ finding inspiration outdoors for current projects
+ berlin marathon training – feeling strong & determined!!

What’s keeping you happy as of lately? Hope you have an amazing week!!!


It’s taken me one year + a week to post this. I began writing this post a few days after leaving London. But couldn’t really think of the words to describe my experience. I wanted to share this life-changing time with all of you, but I first had to understand what all of it meant. Exactly one year and ten days ago, I crossed the London Marathon finish line. After two full days of absolutely no food or sleep, it seemed like a miracle to me.

The days leading up to my flight to London friends + family began to reach out with so much love + support. Their excitement for the race made me that much more anxious to get there. I felt as if I really was making them proud! I arrived in London with the worst case of butterflies. I was completely overwhelmed with the city, the busyness, the course set up at Buckingham Palace – My heart was racing faster than ever before. I was ecstatic. After months of hard training, cold winter runs, very early mornings, and years of hoping to be chosen for the London Marathon, there I stood. Ready to make my dream come true.

And then Bam. A big pile of crappy news stood right in front of me. The kind of news that makes you wish you could crawl into a cave forever. My heart ached. I was thousands of miles away from home and all I wanted was a hug. What was suppose to be the most exciting trip of my life then became the hardest. There I was in a completely new + exciting city numb without the slightest clue of how to continue on. I was terrified.

I remember taking the train to the starting line. My eyes were full of tears and I was convinced there was no way I’d ever to be able to finish the marathon under that condition. I contemplated turning back and hiding in my hotel room, but I knew I’d never forgive myself if I did such a thing. I didn’t want to let everyone down cheering me on over the last year. So I continued to the starting line with an empty stomach and heart hoping for the slightest bit of luck. Maybe someone would push me to the finish? Instead I ran into a group of people who kindly exchanged motivating words with me. I then looked at my phone and browsed through all of the messages my dear friends + family sent. I knew while they were thousands of miles away, they were still there rooting me on wanting only the best. As the race began, I decided to let go of that awful feeling of defeat and breathe in the love + inspiration filling the air that beautiful Sunday morning.

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A few miles in my stomach roared as it only consumed a measly 400-600 calories (in beer form) in 48 hrs and well, that’s definitely not an ideal scenario. I ignored the roars and looked to the sweet, little British children cheering and handing out jelly babies. Their kind, little faces warmed my heart a bit.

I was absolutely starving at mile 10. Where were the bananas along the course – I finally had an appetite!! At mile 15 I began to think about “hitting the wall” at mile 19. My mind was reminding me to take it easy while my legs insisted I push harder – I decided to listen to my legs. As soon as I hit mile 20, that was it. The last 6.2 miles were rough, but that’s where I picked up my speed. I realized that my body was on my side + finishing hard was how it was going to be. It helped that before the race, I planned on thinking of a certain person each mile of the last 6. That really helped. With all the doubt before the race, I knew thinking of the people that have rooted me on throughout the training would help push me to finish. I was completing this race not for just myself but also for an organization that dedicates their life to ensuring our beautiful earth + animals are protected for generations to come. That alone gave me the extra boost. How lucky I was to be a part of such a wonderful group.

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I can’t even begin to articulate how emotional of a run this was. I experienced everything from joy to complete heartbreak to pain so sharp I felt like quitting.

It was one of the hardest moments and yet most rewarding time of my life. If there are three things I learnt from this, they are:

+ Never underestimate the love your family, friends, and dear ones have for you. I truly believe that love for one another is what pushes us to achieve the impossible
+ Nothing can prepare you for the unexpected hard times. No matter how awful you feel, find comfort in knowing that feeling will eventually go away – the trick is to acknowledge it and not let it define who you are + just keep going.
+ Be good to yourself. There will always be people lining up to tell you that you’re not good enough, not strong enough, crazy for flying across the ocean to run a marathon. But all of that doesn’t matter. What matters is you show up, follow your heart, and always be kind to yourself.

After one year and one week, it feels good to push publish.

ps: Good luck to all running in London this Sunday!!!






Happy Friday everyone!!! I wanted to share a very happy moment with all of you:) You may remember me briefly talking about National Geographic asking to publish a photo of mine in their “Abroad at Home” book – Well, it’s now available at your local bookstore!!

Growing up I remember my Nana + Bompa bringing piles of old National Geographic magazines to the house. I’d spend hours reading + completely in awe of the gorgeous photographs. If only I could traverse the Sahara Desert and indulge in the most satisfying croissants overlooking the Eiffel Tower. I’d then chop the magazine up and create what would be my dream life. So you can imagine how eager + excited I was to say yes when this publication reached out to me;)

This has definitely inspired me to share more around here  – I absolutely love finding, creating, and sharing the beauty I find in the everyday, so expect to see more from this gal in the upcoming months.

Ps: find the time to do what you love. I know it’s such an annoying cliché to constantly hear, but if you truly love doing something, do it! It’s so underrated. Find your passion, success will follow. Truly believe it.

With that, I’m out for the weekend! Only some spring cleaning + a photoshoot before I’m off to the East Coast next week!! Have the most wonderful weekend!!