instaUPDATE – real life & Rosebud

back to reality and back in the office – miles of files, this is my lifestyle..

… and back home to my own bed, finally after so many weeks away!

this city, this city is haunted.. by ghosts from broken homes – alexisonfire boiled frogs lyrics

city and color “two coins” lyrics

don’t let anyone dull your sparkle – click image for the full post if you missed it!

pre-shower post-midnight selfie’s.. its how I roll #socool

these are a few of my favourite things; band tees, full skirts, converse, sunnies and the sound of music ūüôā

36 crazy fists concert tee, monikee skirt (DK) CO-LAB cross body bag

out for lunch with the boss – found out I get to go on the company trip to Spain in November!!

brunch at The Ladybug and Cafe with my BFF & breakfast guru. She always shows me the best places!

waiting for my nails to dry with tea and snuggles in my favourite hoodie.

these two girls have my heart – misty & lina lookin all majestic like on the hillside.

now y’all know where I got my style, daddy rockin’ the fringe, the original hipster circa 1990

we planted trees for father’s day in my grandpa’s park. i come from a family of tree huggers – click photo for my mom’s blog

thinking over the weekend of another man I learned a lot from – missing this little pony, my BFF’s noble steed

This week was one of coming down. ¬†Coming down and landing back in reality (how unpleasant). ¬† Down from the cloud 9 of a European vacation – relaxing by the beach and stuffing my face with delicious Danish cuisine. while visiting family and shopping. ¬†It was an amazing experience. ¬†I really feel like the Europeans just have their ducks in a row when it comes to social programs and food… OMG the food you guys, go to Europe and just eat!!! ¬†They believe in quality not quantity, that’s why they are famous for being slim and Americans are famous for being fat. I ate so many delicious things there! ¬†Eat like a European – that’s my motto. ¬†Mostly for one reason: seriously do you understand how much better their desserts and chocolates are?? I mean for reals.

¬†While we were in Denmark my grandfather took me to his childhood home and showed me oak trees he planted as a boy. ¬†They tower up now, it was so beautiful to see how much they had grown – he told me there were three times more trees in Denmark now than there were when he left. ¬†This fathers day we had an amazing family brunch with my dad ¬†(the handsome fellow pictured above sporting the fringe jacket) and with his father who is basically a second father to me. (We call him Farfar, Danish for father’s father.) ¬†He has been working on the land all his life, he was our farm every day of my life, and the changes over the years are unbelievable. ¬†Looking at old photos of our farm, seeing him standing at 89 years old in his childhood home with the trees he planted towering over him- I’ve had a lot of time lately to think about how grateful I am for my family and how simple acts of ordinary people are what make all the difference in the world.

I think the history my family has given me such a strong sense of who I am and what I want. ¬†When I spend time on the farm with my family, with my horses, with the animals and the trees and the wind in my hair; I feel free, I feel happy. ¬†When I look around and see well sites dotting up like pockmarks on the once perfect prairie I am afraid; afraid of what is yet to come and that our collective greed will destroy all the earth has to give. ¬†I apologize for being a bit behind schedule with my posts here, but sometimes I have to focus on the country-smile side of myself, you can find me in the meantime helping my somewhat technologically challenged mother with her blog. Click HERE¬†or,¬†add your voice to the conversation on ALBERTA VOICES. ¬†I urge any Canadian citizens, or any concerned individual from any corner of the world to educate yourselves on the dangers of Hydraulic Fracturing . ¬†We all talk about the weather every day, make jokes about how mundane our lives are. ¬†Well, the weather lately has been so weird… its almost like there is some sort of global climate change happening. Perhaps from the massive amounts of fuel we have burned in the last 100 years? ¬†Perhaps we need to pause more often, leave the concrete jungles where everyone is perfect and we never speak to strangers and go back to country roots, where we aren’t afraid to get dirty, do hard work, create a home and a FUTURE. ¬†In the “now” generation we have very much lost sight of the “and then”. ¬†We are failing to plan for ¬†future, which is looking pretty bleak if we, collectively as humans, don’t turn things around a bit. ¬†Stat. ¬†The latest assault on the Rosebud River valley that I grew up in is some rich person’s idea of fun ¬†“a European style country club with luxury condo’s and a paved race track” smack dab in the middle of ¬†Absolutely No Where, Alberta. Also known as the the most damn important place in the world to me because I happened to be born in the center of it. ¬†Read the Calgary Herald article HERE.

The most unforgivable lie we humans tell ourselves is that we, alone, will make no difference.

Alone, we can make all the difference in the world. ¬†A single act can be everything to someone.¬†¬†¬†It takes ONE person with passion, one catalyst for change to happen. ¬†¬†Why are so many afraid to use their voice?¬†¬†Afraid to be passionately involved in their convictions for fear of offending someone, somewhere. ¬†As Eleanor Roosevelt put it – “Do what you know in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized for it anyways.” ¬† Its why things like the Steubenville Rape make me so sick to the core – because if ONE person at that party had pro-actively intervened, had stepped in and said, ” THIS IS WRONG AND YOU NEED TO STOP BECAUSE I WILL MAKE YOU STOP.” ¬†If just one person had had the courage to use that inner voice that must have been screaming at them, then that girl’s life could have been so different. ¬†And those “poor boys” would never have had their “bright futures ruined” by this “misunderstanding” had someone acted (perhaps by knocking some sense into them).¬†I’m so tired of victim blaming.¬†¬†In other words, EVERYONE WINS WHEN SOMEONE ACTS FOR WHAT IS RIGHT. ¬†Do we see where I am going with this? ¬†You have a voice, use it for the truth, use it to ask critical questions, use it to stand up for what you know in your heart to be right. ¬†Do not be silent. ¬†Do not sell yourself short to think you make no difference, the only difference is between the choices you make every single day.

” there will come a time when you must choose between what is right and what is easy “

-j.k.rowling

It will not be easy, but it is our generation that must be the change.  I like to complain that I am back to reality because in some ways, I am terrified of the reality we live in.  Other days I think to myself, how lucky am I to have a steady job to complain about coming back to? Then I remember that luck had nothing to do with it, I worked my ass off to get it.  I am ecstatic to go to Amsterdam and then Barcelona in November, to see Europe again and have to come crashing back to reality in Calgary.  You make your own luck, you get what you give.  You plant a seed and one day it will grow into a forest but first you have to get your hands dirty and dig a hole for it, cover it in water and hope it grows to something beautiful.   Find your passion and let it grow.  Thanks for reading! xo, aiyana

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World Oceans Day

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IMG_5675swimsuit by victoria’s secret

Some more photos from Denmark, which I am already missing terribly. ¬†Did you know today is world ocean day? Click THIS LINK for more information. ¬†I have always loved the ocean, despite growing up in a sea of wheat fields in the middle of the Alberta prairie. ¬†I cannot wait to move and someday live by the sea.. maybe its because I’m a Cancer, maybe its because I’m a swimmer, maybe its just because the oceans are the most beautiful and amazing force on this planet. ¬†There is just absolutely nothing that compares – we actually know less about the bottom of the sea than we do about space. ¬†I recommend everyone watches BBC’s Blue Planet, there is so much amazing footage on there, its absolutely spectacular. ¬†I seriously love the BBC.

 xo, aiyanajane

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Mrs. Green

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converse super low rider sneakers  || blouse by le chateau s13 ||  faux-leather shorts by topshop

Lately I am having a real moment with monochrome, particularly in shades of blue and green like I mentioned HERE. I didn’t even think about it when I threw this together, I wasn’t planning on blogging it, I was just going for a walk in the forest and listening to The Hurry and The Harm¬†for the first time. ¬†Then I realized I was listening to Dallas Green, wearing all green and walking though the greenest forest I’ve ever seen and figured it had to be documented… PLUS it was World Environment Day-go green!!! ¬†Though the title suggests otherwise, I actually have no desire to marry Dallas (in fact it was more to brag about my love for clue and the fact that once I beat it on the first guess!) but I do love his music beyond all words. ¬†I’ve listened to the album 4 times since I got it yesterday.. like I said here when I love something, I REALLY LOVE IT. (Like, obsessively!)

Its the same thing with my converse, which I just noticed have holes worn though the soles from my abuse.. and these mint pleather shorts, which I have been wearing constantly (literally) since we arrived here in Denmark. (My grandmother thinks they’re awesome, she compliments me every day..) I would have packed more shorts and fewer pairs of pants had I known how beautiful the weather would be, but I wasn’t sure how much rain would be falling since last time I visited it was very damp. The three pairs I brought with me are on constant rotation.. vacation style is always simple because how much can you fit into one suitcase, really? ¬†I’m going shopping today (our last day here) and its going to be tight tetris-ing all my stuff back into the suitcase to go home! I’m really going to miss it here, but don’t worry.. I have literally a thousand photos to look back on! I’ll share some more soon.

xo, aiyanajane

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laser cut florals

balance beam cute romper geometric ruffle blouse and laser cut shorts kick  up your heels laser cut silk shorts long hair, dont care stop and smell the flowers sunshine in the garden the sun lives up there walk on the wild side zipper ruffle detailplatform leather pumps by Le Chateau  ||  sunnies by Ardene ||  h.i.p. shorts via Winners ||  top via R.A. Clothing   

Wanna know a not-so-secret-secret? ¬†High waist anything is my jam – but especially shorts! ¬†These ones are the best ones ever because they are a soft silk and have the cutest laser cut floral detail on the bottom. ¬†Laser-cutting is one of my favourite spring trends, on these shorts it looks kind of like lace and kind of like a scalloped hem, and that’s kind of perfect. ¬†I am such a girly-girl at heart, give me ruffles and florals and silk and high heels and I will be happy as a clam. A little bit of edgy detail (like the zipper back of this blouse) add’s just enough sass to an otherwise sweet outfit. ¬†I love how when paired together the shorts with this breezy graphic blouse looks like a romper! ¬†(Another summer trend I love.) I bought this top ages ago and just noticed today it’s getting rather worn out.. Its from one of my favourite local boutiques back in Calgary, click the link above or stop by if you are shopping on 17th! They always have amazing selection (and great designer denim) and the staff are super sweet. ¬†I’ll be heading back there when I return to #yyc to see if I can find another equally awesome top.¬†

Speaking of perfect things that I love, summer here in Denmark is spectacularly beautiful, mostly because there are flowers and trees absolutely everywhere you turn! ¬†I must stop blogging (I’m such night owl) and get my beauty sleep for another full day tomorrow! ¬†

xo, aiyanajane

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goodbye 2012

I really meant to have a NYE post for you lovely readers, but my the holidays turned out to be a great deal busier than I anticipated and I didn’t get it together.. whoops!

This year I have found myself focused so entirely on the importance of family, and so rather than blog and take outfit photos I was spending time with my grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles, my brothers, my parents and my friends- the family I choose. The closest my little atheist heart comes to believing in God is when I think about how lucky I am to have such an amazing family. I  am so blessed to have such a supportive, loving group of people at my back, I could never have made it through 2012 without their help.

This was a very difficult year for me, one I have to say I am happy to see the end of. ¬†I was reading my cousins blog, and she posted¬†”¬†Remember!¬†Every year must end with the feeling that you¬†never¬†had such a good year.”¬†A lovely sentiment to be sure, but sometimes years go by where things just seem to be going badly despite your best efforts.

That¬†positive¬†attitude however, seems to be a distinctly Danish trait from my personal observations. I am so glad to have that Danish heritage behind me, my grandparents came to Canada after they were married to raise their family. The Danish have been ranked as the “happiest” people on earth, but I doubt they are any happier than any other first world countries, it is the cultural attitude that the Danes have that makes the difference, a strong belief in the value of hard work and a positive attitude. I’ve learned so much from my Grandparents, and feel still that there are so many stories left to hear, that I would much rather spend my time with them than primping, shooting, editing and posting.¬†They have always instilled in us the importance of being happy with what you have.¬†As I write this there is Rice Pudding on the stove upstairs and my Grandparents are due to be here any minute.

This year I have felt within me an urgency to be with my family, thinking back I wonder if everything that happened was only to bring me closer to them. 2012 was NOT a banner year for me, and no amount of my Danish heritage can put a positive spin on it.

First I was laid off, then weeks later I discovered my (ex)boyfriend of nearly 5 years had been¬†extensively browsing the craigslist personals section. Jobless, suddenly single and homeless, I moved back to my parents farm. It was lovely to be home in the countryside and I spent as much of those early summer weeks swimming and riding. Then on July 15, 2012, a week before my champagne birthday, I was riding a friends somewhat unruly mount when she reared over and landed on me, crushing me beneath her and fracturing my pelvis in two places. I was bedridden for weeks, and unable to go to school in September as had been my original plan.¬†Since breaking my pelvis I’ve suffered a streak of minor injuries, it seems excessive and I am hoping for a respite. I had an eye infection, dislocated my knee, a painting fell pointy side down and landed on my forehead (you can still see the dent!), I also accidentally gave myself a black eye and most recently,¬†I fell down my stairs and popped the bursa sack in my elbow. I’ve been joking with my family and friends that I only had to make it to the end of 2012 and my accident streak might end, I hope that proves to be the truth!¬†Once I was healed enough, I went back to working at the Rosebud Theatre, and found a legal administrative assistant program at a different school, Robertson College, that started in November.

This year as I said, has been full of¬†challenges but it is the attitude with which we face our struggles that will define our happiness.¬†I’ve been back in Calgary for a couple months now, so being home over the holidays was a welcome change of pace.¬†Though so many things went “wrong” for me, I feel that without those obstacles I would never have found the strength in myself to overcome them. The greatest obstacle is not physical, but emotional, and to the detriment of your heart¬†some times you find out who people really are. ¬†In 2012 I had to let go of a few people who I loved deeply because I finally realized their treatment was not reflective of my treatment of them. As the year comes to a close I look at myself from where I was last year and cannot help but feel pride, because throughout the difficulties, despite sometimes feeling like it was completely hopeless I am the happiest now that I have ever been.

We accept the love we think we deserve.

in 2012 I finally realized I deserve to be loved and treated with dignity and respect. It seems so obvious but “love” is not always true even if spoken aloud with a great many assurances. Words, I believe, are the most powerful tool man has but so often we forget their power, and too often is the truth drowned out by other voices. Love loses its value when people forget that without respect, love is as empty as their words.

This year, for all my trials, I am fortunate to have finally realized my personal value. To those who value themselves, it seems obvious, but there are many who feel worthless, an existence without purpose or love is empty. Questioning the point of your own existence can be a dark path to wander down, but when you find the light, the reason for your search and your purpose,then suddenly the darkness is nothing. It is not the dark we fear, it is the unknown. As a young adult there is so much left unknown, and an immense pressure it put on young people to figure out what to do with their lives, when I graduated high-school I was entirely in the dark, and being asked by every adult what my life plan was was about the least helpful thing of all time. The years I spent after school- working for a company that threw me under the bus as soon as it became convenient, living with a boyfriend who treated me like his personal servant, hiding in the city from the people who would ask me what I wanted to do with my life. I needed those years, those experiences, those revelations- that painful realization that love is not always enough, before I could find the truth in my own heart.

The most important thing to remember, is that without those you love you have nothing. Often over the Christmas holidays I find myself disgusted with our consumer based culture- hoards of people trampling one another on boxing day to save a few dollars. Materialism, consumerism, selfishness and thoughtlessness drive the economy along while family falls to the wayside. Love and family, not material things, are the most important part of life. Part of the urgency I feel to be with my family stems from confronting the impossible- my grandparents both have Cancer. It makes me sad when I speak with people for whom visiting their grandparents is a chore, because for me it has always been one of the greatest joys in my life. How can I think of my personal vanity when I am facing the reality of their mortality? They will be my first priority always, and I find myself wishing for more time. More time to blog, more time to spend with them, with my friends, or family, more time for me, for doing nothing, for doing everything. Time is a fickle thing, moving forward in leaps and bounds- perfect moments that last forever and the rush of time lost in the menial monotony of the day to day.

One thing is certain, every second that goes by is a moment of your life you will never get back. As the last seconds of 2012 tick away I find comfort in the belief that though 2013 will undoubtedly bring with it a whole new series of challenges, each one will be another opportunity for growth, a catalyst for change and an opportunity for something new and better. The new year represents new hope, and it is my hope that each of you may find your purpose, a lightness within your soul that allows you to shine. Every life has darkness in it, if you find yourself feeling as though nothing has changed, as though you are stuck in a hopeless place that seems inescapable, search within your heart and make the changes that will make you happy. As individuals we control our fates, and though we should try to strive to be decent, in our failings we must have empathy for others. Remember that a single kind word can make the difference in someones day, and a single hurtful slur can shatter a heart. Your words have power, your heart has the truth, your mind has value and it is up to you to find your voice.

I wish you peace and love in 2013

xo, aiyana

Blogger inspirations

The best part of blogging is finding a community full of INSPIRING and INTERESTING people!

these are a few of my favorite blogs to follow.

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Emma + Elise at  A BEAUTIFUL MESS

Elsie and Emma, A beautiful mess

¬†¬† I love reading this blog, and it makes me SO wish I had a sister to be blogging buddies with. They both have such great, quirky style and so many interesting insights. It’s a relatable and helpful blog based on finding beauty in the every day and the imperfect. Click the photo to read about Elsie and Emma.

shea marie at PEACE LOVE SHEA

cheyenne meets chanel

Shea Marie is one of those girls that you just wish you could step into her shoes for a day. Her blog follows her transition from a small town to a big city, a willowy blonde living in Hollywood, with that California cool girl style that I absolutely covet. I’ve posted before about how different my style would be if I didn’t live in a country that shorts are only ¬†really wearable for 3 months of the year. I love reading her blog and pretending that one day I’ll move to Hollywood and be a stylist, and a writer and go to fancy parties in leopard shorts because its warm enough to do that!

jessie kass at SEAMS FOR A DESIRE

jessie kassIf you have Pinterest, you’ve probably seen her outfits. I love this blog for inspiration, every outfit she posts is so chic and she is a master accessorizer. I’d die for a chance to raid her jewelry collection (who am I kidding, her whole closet) and I have some serious hair envy, why can’t mine be that long? She always balances textures, fits, colors and prints in her looks and comes up with something beautiful and interesting. Her latest post promised Q&A and i’m super excited for the answers to come, so I can read all about this girl I worship from afar!

taralynn mcnitt at UNDRESSED SKELETON

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Taralynn’s blog is so inspirational, about healthy living, change and fitness. Click the photo for her story, its unbelievable. I love her blog for¬†recipes¬†she has a ton of great ideas for healthy meals that are still yummy!

wendy nguyen at WENDYS LOOKBOOK

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Wendy’s style is so beautifully feminine, I love perusing her blog for polished city style. Click the photo for more outfit details- its funny that she mentions wishing for fall, as I dream of the LA weather she enjoys! We always want what we do not have. She always looks so perfectly put together, and is so driven, smart and talented. I love her view on fashion, and admire her strength. Read her story here.

andrea at  ANDREA RUNGHOLM.DK

andrea rungholm blonde danish gold khaki style

Andrea has always been a passionate, outgoing and energetic girl, who is wise and mature beyond her years.¬†I must admit, this one has a little bias behind it. Andrea and I are related.. usually for¬†simplicity’s¬†sake I say we’re cousins but she’s actually my dad’s cousin’s daughter so I have no idea what the proper name for our somewhat distant relation is. She lives in Denmark, so we rarely see each other, but she stayed with our family and went to school here for a few months, and it was almost like having a sister. . I love her blog for fitness inspiration, and wish she didn’t live in Denmark so I could benefit from her cooking, since even when she stayed with us years ago she was already a master in the kitchen! She also always looks super chic and shops at affordable stores like Zara and H&M.

I miss her lots, I feel like she’s the sister I never had and hate being separated by an ocean! She’s very smart and I wanted to share her latest post because it’s the kind of thing that makes me think we are sister’s from different mothers! (Since I’m sure my mother would say the same as hers, and I would have the same rebuttal!)

On blogging:

” I believe that, overall, are three positions for it to have a blog.¬†As the first, “What is the purpose and why should some bother looking images of what she has for breakfast?” The other, “Blogs are so inspiring and you get so many tips, tricks and I love reading blogs.”¬†The third reason relates a part of those who read my blog through postings on Facebook because they know me, ¬†“The fact that blogging is a waste of time and you do not get the right picture to the blogger”. ¬†I think in some cases that many bloggers do those things.¬†– ¬†makes two breakfasts, one to the blog and you actually eat.¬†Shows that you’ve got something sponsored whatever it is, tampons, just because you have got it for free.¬†When you have a blog, you have 100% control over how you want to present themselves and how the blog should be.¬†You can make up his own little world.¬†In some cases, an blogger a very misleading picture of themselves – whether it is because you want to be someone else or you want attention, is so different.¬†Some time ago my mother asked me: “Why do you never photos of your messy room?¬†So it does not seem so perfect all the time and your readers might real with a little more to you? “.¬†I could take a picture of you when my apartment fiddling very most and I could easily take a picture for you right when I’m just waking up and looks like something you’d think would never get to see normally again.¬†I can see that it will give you a picture of that I am down to earth and I do not distort my life into something it is not, but what would the purpose just so be it? There is certainly no one wants to see pictures of an apartment cluttering and even fewer than none at all, who wants to see me tomorrow really ugly?¬†It may be it gives a few good laughs, but it gives when absolutely no inspiration.¬†The purpose of my blog is to give good tips, recipes and outfits that can inspire others.¬†Not to make myself as something I’m not; without sounding too self-centered, I am happy for who I am, what I have and as I look.¬†The bottom line is that I hope you see me as an honest blogger and I enjoy reading my blog. “

SHARE YOUR FAVORITE BLOGS IN THE COMMENTS & streamline your blog reading :

download google chrome
this fast free web browser can translate almost ¬†anything, i love that i can read blogs from across the world, even if the translation isn’t perfectly accurate.
sign up for bloglovin
a super easy way to scroll through your favourite blogs and websites like you scroll through your facebook news feed.

xo, a