photo 1 (50).JPG

Reinforcement = the process of encouraging or establishing a belief or pattern of behavior, especially by encouragement. 

A strong Mind, Body and Home needs Reinforcements......Whether it be a daily planner, a group of friends, an inspiring print or a favourite app, we MUST surround ourselves with who and what will encourage and assist us to be the best 'Me' possible.

I think it's safe to say, for a lot of us, most days are quite manageable....though everyone's degree of manageable differs of course. I think we can attribute this ability to manage to the reinforcements we don't even realize we've built into our lives.  Something as simple as our morning routine can help to get the day off to a great start. Do you have a morning routine?? A while back, I wrote about morning routines and asked, "What do you do before breakfast?" . I definitely do have a routine (you'll have to read that post to find out what my mornings entail) and even though I do try and stick with it, there are times when I just can't.... 

This is where Adaptability comes in...Adaptability AND Resiliency some days. There is one thing I can say about my life, and I'm sure yours manageable as it is most days, when the curveballs get thrown, let's just say, they come in at 125mph and damn, there are some that come close to striking me out! 

This is where you have to use all of your 'tools' in your Reinforcements toolbox, in addition to your ability to Adapt and be Resilient, to help you get through. I've already mentioned some of my 'tools', but here are a few more:

  • Moleskines and a pen; so I can jot down ideas, lists, quotes etc as the day goes by...and so I can look back at all the good when it may not be quite as good a day as ones prior.
  • Magazines; I subscribe to mags that let me lose myself in them, whose pages end up on my inspiration boards and that help keep me on track from a motivational standpoint. When I've had a rough day, I come home, pour a glass of wine and curl up with a magazine to either distract me for a bit, or to help me unwind. 
  • Fresh Flowers; I try and have fresh flowers in my home as often as I can, especially flowers from the Market here in town. They bring a smile to my face every time I look at them and really, I can't think of a better 'pick me up' then a bouquet of your favorites to bring some cheer and colour into your home.
  • The Gym;  I have two words for you: Leg Press! The days when the frustration levels are topping out are the days I actually have some of my best workouts!  Head phones in, music turned up, water bottle filled...Bring on leg day..and heavy leg day at that! The great thing about working out is that it makes you so aware of the mind and body connection, especially when doing weights I find (I'm definitely a gal that lifts). You have little choice but to completely focus on your workout when you have a new personal best loaded up on the squat rack.
  • Re-Organizing: one of THE best distractions for me is re-organizing, updating/refreshing my home decor and purging. It not only helps the mind de-clutter and settle to go through the creative process but it also brings a new sense of 'Me' to your/my space. It's a pretty great workout too if you're having to run things back and forth to the basement like I do.
  • Cooking;  there's something almost therapeutic about chopping up veggies, bbqing out in the sunshine and taking in all the yummy aromas as the meal comes together...maybe I was a sous chef in a prior life. Not only do you have the 'therapy' of the process, you know you have healthy, great food to feed your body too!

Reinforcements.....we all need them and only you know what you need to ensure you remain successful, healthy and happy. I find as we get older, we hone in on what really works for us....What are some of your Reinforcements?

Adaptability and Resiliency work hand in hand with your Reinforcements and the more tangible "tools" you have in your toolbox, the more emotionally strong, resilient and adaptable you should be able to be. I say should....but honestly, I really mean will. You WILL be more resilient and adaptable. 

A friend and I were discussing how our lives can look 'perfect' via the internet...The 'flawless' Instagram photos, the 'splendid' Facebook posts...yea right! For those moments, those literal seconds, life is 'perfect', but what about all the other minutes and hours in the day? I'm sure there are many other 'perfect' moments in your day, but for the 'not-so-perfect' times, remember these 3 words:



The Making of Me...

Someone asked me the other day what I blog about and crazily enough, I had a bit of a difficult time answering. 

My first and immediate response was, "Home Decor"....

I must have answered with a somewhat unsure look on my face or tone in my voice, as they asked me the question again... After what seemed like an eternity, I responded for a second time, but much more confidently, "I blog about lifestyle topics...I blog about life"....... As the words came out of my mouth, I thought to myself, "Did that ever feel good rolling off my tongue".

As much as I love Home Decor, I feel like there is much, much more to my blog than that...and to me as a person....

|n my humble opinion, blogging should be your much or as little as you'd like to share...but when push comes to shove, your blog should be a reflection of you, what inspires you and what you love.

Wait....let me say that another way.... your LIFE should be about what inspires you and what you love...a reflection of what makes you YOU.

You're probably thinking, what is this girl talking about? Of course my life is a reflection of me.. I'm living it!! 

But I ask you to take a step back....take a panoramic view of the life you are living. Can you say to yourself with 100% honesty, I'm living a life that reflects 'me' as the person I want to be.... 

Insert Epiphany In The Making Here!! 

Let me back up a bit first..... It all began one day a few months ago when I had written out my initials... AMBM.......................and it came to me...

A Mind Body hoMe Life & Style... Your mind, your body and your home need to be in synergy to find and retrieve the "Me" you strive to be every day.

Some days are definitely a smoother ride then others, but the thoughts running through your mind, how you care for your body and what you do to make your house a home reveal the 'Me' you are becoming every second of every day.


Rustic Retrievals = Retrieving your experience and knowledge on a daily basis to continue to mold  the unfinished parts of you. Essentially, taking the 'old me' (who I was yesterday) and continuing to learn, grow and build the 'new me' (who I am today and who I will be tomorrow). 

I'm just getting started as my mind is going a mile a minutes with so many ideas! Stay tuned for so much more Mind + Body + Home = Me and Rustic Retrievals Life & Style...

For now....I will leave you with this question...

What inspires you on a daily basis about your life??




Before Breakfast....


I don't know about you, but I'm getting to be quite good friends with 4:00am.

I travel quite a bit with my "9-5" and that travel includes hitting the road well before sunrise and early morning meetings (the photo above is from a trip into Toronto one morning, for an early meeting...I/we always leave extra early to miss traffic!) . Luckily, I've always been a morning person (I'm also an evening/night person...let's just say sleep and I don't really get along all that well). When I was younger, I would be on the ice for figure skating practice well before 7am and having grown up in the country, you had to be at the end of the lane way nice and early to catch the bus to school...and we were one of the first pick ups of the day.

I'm also quite a breakfast fan (thankfully) because as we all know, it really and truly is the most important meal of the  day...for many reasons (we'll get into that in a later post). If you follow me on Instagram, you'll see my Saturday morning breakfast ritual that includes a leisurely start to the day of heading to the Guelph Farmers Market, picking up my favourite Fairly Frosted Vegan Bakery Cupcake(s) and then heading back home to sit on the deck/patio to have my cupcake and latte breakfast (with the odd mimosa, donut and fresh fruit mixed in) and enjoy this somewhat lazy start to the weekend.

IF ONLY this could be every morning!!

In reality, my typical breakfast includes items such as homemade protein-rich smoothies or Greek yogurt with fruit/berries....and OF COURSE a latte (made with skim milk and all natural sweetener). important as breakfast is, I read an article in the Globe and Mail a few months ago that talked to the "Twelve Things Successful People Do Before Breakfast".

Yes, that's right, BEFORE breakfast! Around my house, that usually includes walking Charlie and mayyybeee heading to the gym for a workout ( I tend to do my early morning workouts on an empty stomach). 

This article lists things/activities/tasks such as:

  • Waking up early
  • Exercising
  • Working on top a priority business project
  • Working on a personal passion project
  • Spend quality time with family
  • Connect with their spouses
  • Network over coffee
  • Meditate to clear their minds
  • Write down things they're grateful for
  • Plan and strategize while they're fresh
  • Check their email
  • Read the news

When I look at this list, I would say that throughout the week, I would actually do most of these, depending on the day. How about you?

I wake up early, exercise by walking the pooch, make lists for the day ahead and most days, before I even get out of bed, I take a few moments to just lay there, clear my head and ease into the day. Once I'm out of bed, I'm checking my phone(s) for emails and to get caught up on the news that occurred while I was sleeping......

I also keep a journal beside my bed to jot down new project ideas, things I'm grateful for  and items I want to remember from that day. This is something I generally do before I go to sleep, but I'm going to start adding it to my morning routine too! I'll admit that Monday - Friday, the business projects take priority but the weekends are generally mine to work on my passion projects....and I definitely do find that the first few hours of the morning (ie. 6:30-9:00am) are my most productive.

So...overall,  I would say that I do 8-9 of these things on a regular basis.

I'd also add one more item to that list......

  • Watch the sunrise......

There's something about witnessing the sun coming up over the horizon that puts a different and extremely positive perspective on's a sign of the new day beginning....and is one of the most beautiful times of day to get outside and enjoy the outdoors!

I hope this post inspires you to add a few more items to your morning routine....items that may only take a few minutes to complete, but that will only add to the goodness....the greatness...of your day!