Saturday, May 31, 2014


1/ Go you! 1km. 10 minutes. 30 minutes. 5 miles. Whatever. It doesn't matter. Every step is a big win as far as i'm concerned. At least every step that doesn't take me to the fridge or the couch. After 8 months in bed, I literally couldn't run for more than 3 minutes, so i walked a lot, and run a little. With every new workout I walk a little less and run a little more. It feels great (most of the time). We are all very busy, the weather isn't always nice, and we could all find a 1000 extra more reason not to go running. So if you went it's just awesome. Be proud and keep moving, one step at a time! If some days you feel like even 1 mile is too much, start with smaller objectives, like "run till i reach that big tree", or "to the end of that path". When i feel like i can't run any longer, those small goals help me stay motivated. Try it and tell me what you think!

2/ Shoes. are. SO. important. Some of you may think "but i don't do much sport, i just run from time to time. i don't need actual sport shoes right?" Yes you do. Your feet and ankles and legs and back will thank you for it. Running shoes are the only "equipment" I bought (along with sport bras obviously!) and i am so happy with them. I run in a park/forest with branches and uneven paths everywhere and the only reason i've never twisted my ankle on a big rock are my shoes. They're cute, comfy, flexible and most importantly have great cushioning (i had to look up that word, hope it actually means "amorti"!). I feel like i run more "efficiently"and easily with them so honestly don't hesitate! 

3/ music. Do you know how when you are sad you tend to listen to sad songs, and when you're happy you go toward happy songs. Well if you want to feel energized and motivated, find cool songs that have that vibe! Because the minutes those audio waves hit your brain, you'll feel like you have all that extra energy and you'll start running faster. weird but true. For me lately it's been Avicii. I simply put their latest album on repeat and start running. I am definitely not advising you to spend 3 hours working on a playlist (because you could be running for those 3 hours instead!) but if you feel really bored and missing energy when you run, just try it with music, and tell me what you think! 
Also, if you wand an extra incentive when running, i would advise downloading a free running app such as Nike+ Running. You can use it to record your running, and the app will tell you for how long you ran, at what speed... Also a guy with a cute voice will let you know every time you pass a new kilometer, which i really like to hear!

4/ On a treadmill vs outside. I actually started running inside while in Canada (mostly had to do with the snow outside!). And honestly i love it. I don't care that there's no view because i'm mostly in my head/thoughts/dreams when i run. And i feel like it's so much easier to breath while running in a room than outside (do you think there is a scientific reason for that?). Now that i'm in Paris I run outside nd it's nice. There's trees, little birds singing, and the fact that the paths are uneven, going up and down... makes it more of a challenge. Given the choice though, i think i'd stick to the treadmill, unless i were to move to a place with less pollution (i think it's a big reason for my breathing issues in Paris). What do you prefer? One thing i know for sure, if you're running outside in a forest like environment, then close your mouth. Or swallow a bug. Really it's up to you. (i've learned this the hard way)

5/ Proteins! So, i guess i should start by saying that i follow a meat-free diet. I eat fish like once a week (plus sushi, i looove sushi), and eggs 2 to 3 times a week. I think because of my diet, i am much more aware of what sorts of minerals, vitamins... go into my body. And one thing i have learned about my body is that if i don't eat/drink protein after a workout, i will feel week and will most certainly be in pain the next day (stiffness...). But when i charge up on protein after running recovery is way easier. My favorite after workout food is eggs (boiled the day before so they're extra cold) with a bit of mayonnaise and curry (i'm allowed right, i've just run!), or a smoothie in which i add vegetal powder protein. For a very long time i thought there was nothing better than a big chocolaty/sugary treat from the boulangerie after all that sport. Boy was i wrong. They're way better on a Sunday afternoon  ;)
Tuesday, May 27, 2014

dear 25th year

Please be a good one.

So, yep, i'm 25. And not super happy about it right now. But the way i see it, i now have 364 days to change my mind about it! And it starts with a cute album i'll be making as the year goes by, inspired by the 52 weeks of art journaling class taught by Rachel Denbow over at A Beautiful Mess. Playing with paper is just the best, i can't believe i forgot that for a while!

I have some other cool projects planned for that 25th year, which i'm hoping to turn into The Year of Craft, since i've come to realize that basically not much makes me happier than creating stuff. I guess i'm getting wiser as i get older ha!

the fun detail: i am a massive letter thickers hoarder, yet i didn't have enough shapes and fonts in black, so i just picked alphas i liked and painted them all in black! I guess this is my version of "messy" art journaling, but hey, I try!

Friday, May 23, 2014

life right now - may 2014

loving playing with HTML and giving the blog a new look. #geek   
thinking about buying a sewing machine!  
eating the first summer fruits, i can't get enough watermelon and nectarines <3
wondering where i'll be same time next year 
listening to Hey Brother (Avicii) and All my Days (Alexi Murdoch) on repeat
enjoying the longer hours of daylight   
making crazy plans for the future, always. 
struggling with my birthday approaching. is there such a thing as a quarter life crisis?  
feeling inspired and creative.  
dreaming of a trip to Copenhagen  
finding it hard to wake up before 9.30 am (i try!)  
celebrating running again (and feeling better after each run!)
watching Game of thrones! #TeamTyrion 
hoping to find a job soon! 

* this list was inspired by the lovely journaling freebie card Ann-Marie Espinoza shared on her blog *
Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Remember when i told you about the #100HappyDays challenge? Well it's already been more than 50 days and i'm still loving it. For those of you who never heard of it, it's super simple. It's basically about one thing and one thing only: do you think you can be happy for 100 happy days in a row? Most people would think, boy i don't have time for that. And i would reply: take it. It's not always easy. Some days are so busy by the time you finish that last batch of clothes it's 11pm and all you want is go to sleep. Some other days are a bit sad, or maybe you're sick with the flu. Well that's when it gets fun. During the second week, i got sick with some kind of food poisoning. I wasn't happy. Except, do you know the best medicine for that is also one of my favorite drinks (yes, i'm talking Coca Cola). So here you go, one reason to be happy after all. Easy right? So what are you waiting for? 
Be happy, and tell the world!

A few things that made be happy those last 50 days: a good magazine, going out with dear friends, making art with my two hands, my nephew, gratitude and pretty photos, knitting, an inspiring book, movie tickets, my favorite dish, pink flowers, candles, white wine, spring cleaning, shopping, going for a walk, my cat, iced coffee at Starbucks, running again, yoga nights, a yellow top.

I am in charge of how I feel, and today I choose happiness
Friday, May 16, 2014


Last Summer, i left for London for a quick holiday. When i came back,with my camera full of photos and my head full of stories, i wasn't to sure how to document it all. Had it been a 2/3 weeks trip, i might have made a mini album. For a very big trip (like the 4 months i spent in Canada), it would have been a full 12x12 album. In this case, i decided to include those 4 awesome days spent in London directly to my Project Life album, treating it almost like a regular spread. A spread with just a bit more photos let's say. 

Curious about my process? It's super simple. Here's how to document a trip, PL style, in just 5 steps and a few hours:
1// Print all your favorite photos in a bunch of different sizes: 4x6, 4x3, 6x12... Put them in your page protectors. I myself arranged them by day, then hour, then just because one looks pretty next to that other one ;)

2// Grab your box probably full of hundreds of different Project Life cards, and start putting one in every empty pocket. Most of mine were from past Studio Calico PL kits, plus some from the Midnight edition and finally some from die cuts sheets. I like to mix and match, but of course you could stick to a collection or a color combo if that's more your style. Just remember to alternate between pretty cards just here to decorate and journaling cards so you can move on to...

3// Grab your favorite pen and write everything about your trip. Why did you take it? How did you get there? What did you do? Visited? Loved? Loved not so much? Everything you want to remember, you write! I use various techniques to help me tell the stories, like fill in the blank cards, top 5, quotes... 

4// Embellish! Letter stickers, enamel dots, stamps... Whatever you like best. Also, it's very much ok to put stuff ON your photos. White space was meant for that if you ask me. As you can see, i didn't embellish much. Mostly because i thought the photos were enough, but that's up to you.

5// Memories recorded! Well done. Go and make new ones now. 
I'm thinking Copenhagen right now. What about you?

Monday, May 12, 2014


The thing about getting into knitting is that you quickly become surrounded by yarn. Like, more yarn than you can probably knit. Mostly because of that thing that happen in all craft stores, when you look around and think "oh this is pretty! i'm sure i could do something with it". Well i chose to weave all that yarn.
It actually started ten years ago when my sister moved out and decided to throw that big cork board. I looked at it and knew there was something to do with it. So i saved it. And over the years i've used it to pin pretty stuff (remember before Pinterest?) and create photo collage of life, friends... And now, it's a weaving loom! 
Best part about the loom? It cost me nothing! I already had the board, already had the bobby pins, and for the thread used to start the weave? It's a pretty white kitchen string we have plenty of at home. And obviously, the yarn. The blue I just used as a color accent for a beanie so i had most of the skein left. The pink i just bought (who doesn't need pink yarn in her life?), and the white I have lots of because when i started knitting i thought "oh i'm sure i'm going to need plenty of white yarn" (i haven't made a single white knit yet...) So here they are, all the ingredients for a perfect weaving day. 
If you are anything like me, before the actual weaving, you will make sure to have a pretty Pinterest board full of inspiration, techniques, and beginners instructions to help you get started. Or you know, you can use mine ;). Time to have fun! Cool thing, you can't really mess up and drop a stitch like you would in knitting. As long as you think, hey i like this, then it's a success! I love fringes (or rya as they are apparently called) so i did a lot of those, and then lots of plain weaving, a bit too tight some times, but i'm ok with it. Last thing i did was secure the top of the weaving with a branch i found in the woods recently (cute, right?)
Now if you'll excuse me, i have some more weaving to do!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

ON MY WALK - parc de la poudrerie

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a cornerand reduce it to its lowest terms.” 
                        Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods

Monday, May 5, 2014


Yes it is. Back in August, right before i had to go to the hospital for my first surgery, my parents and I went to spent the day at the beach. Even though i live in Paris, since France isn't that big, the nearest beaches (in Normandy) are only 3/4 hours away by car. Yet it had been a full year since the last time i had seen the sea. And boy did i miss it. The wind, the tide, the birds, the air, even the rocks that hurt your feet if your forget your beach shoes. Listening to the waves, it feels so much easier to just breath. and think. and live. 

Also, pretty photos! I took way too many, as per usual. I wasn't sure what to do with them though. Traditional layout? Mini album? PL style? I ended up printing a few small ones and ordering that big beautiful 12x12 shot. Then i made a layout. Lots of white space, delicate little details that made me think of how i felt that day. Except for the sewing (made by hand) the layout came together pretty quickly.

Then i put it away in my PL album (yes i mixed and matched pocket style and traditional style in the album :)). But that big beautiful photo felt quite lonely. So i put it back on my desk and finally, 6 months later, added words to it. Life is better at the beach. Made with a bunch of my favorite letter stickers. My actual inspiration for that is a class i am currently taking by Elise Blaha Cripe called Use your stash. I really, really love the final result. So much that i am thinking about framing the photo. But what would go on the left side of the layout then you say? Still working on that! Thanks for looking!

Heads up for my lovely readers: after many years using the internet under a pseudonym (alinor) i've sort of decided that the chat/msn days are over and will now be using my actual name (lea) for my blog, pinterest... My face is still the same though, so i hope you'll still recognize me ;)