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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sugar skulls

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converse shoes  ||  le chateau denim shorts & cardigan  ||  skull tank via winners 

This sugar skull tank is an essential for summer, I love the bright kaleidoscope colors and the printed skulls.  I got it at Winners, which is one of my favorite stores ever, I always find so many great things there and they are always priced reasonably.  For me part of the fun of shopping is the thrill of the hunt, at Winners you have to go prepared to sift through the racks but you can always be sure to find something you just NEED to have! These are a few more shots from my time in Denmark, I loved visiting all our family because they all had such beautiful yards for me to explore.  When travelling I pack my favourite basics and live in them; denim shorts, converse low riders a cool tank and my absolute favourite cardigan ever make this outfit basically, perfect!

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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instaUPDATE – Denmark

just putting the “class” into the business class lounge after a few too many at the graduation

I’m leaving on a jet plane, don’t know if I’ll be back again.

Amsterdam security was impressed by my fancy new passport, I was impressed by my leg room.

made it safe and sound, picking up our rental car (unfortunately, not that awesome van)

my grandparents were scared to let me drive at first but now I’m the chauffeur – no more car selfie’s!

after being up for the last 24 + hours.. finally got a shower and some sun, trying to kick the jetlag.

we live on front porches and swing life away… we get by just fine here… [rise against – swing life away]

the best part about Denmark is that there are flowers everywhere you look!

if perfection exists, its found in these moments with sun on your skin and grass under foot.

the cutest little snail, and would you believe #nofilter but the sunlight through the leaves

people watching and window shopping in Vejle

I rolled my ankle running through these woods.. too distracted by all the pretty.

I’m a tree-hugger and proud of it! If only everyone was, imagine what a beautiful world we might live in.

natural beauty every where I look – wove a daisy onto brass branch ring

loving this shade of pink and how light my hair is getting in the sun

finally reunited with my soul sister after five years and so many miles.

no matter how chilly, I’ve never been on to stay on the beach. not when the ocean calls.

everybody loves chuck taylor… everyone else keeps theirs cleaner. I’ve worn a hole in the sole of mine..

At my cousin’s housewarming party, getting Danish drunk off the beer of kings – Tuborg.

…and then we followed it up with bottle service at the club… as always in my trusty drinking shoes.

toes in the sand, chucks in my hand.. okay, this is paradise, for real.

I could stay like this forever, on the edge of eternity.

souvenirs from the sea

I’m never happier than when I’m in the water.. ¬†¬†

Denmark is such an amazing country… I am actually plotting how to stay forever. ¬†Everything is green and covered in flowers right now, the Danish summer is SO beautiful. ¬†I have been visiting endless relatives, each one more determined to stuff me with deliciousness than the last. ¬†Last time we were in Denmark it was all we could talk about when we got home, how many delicious things there were to eat, and its not much different this time around! ¬†Seriously it will be a miracle if I don’t gain 20lbs.¬†¬†I’ve spent the last few days with Andrea, who’s grandfather is my grandmothers brother. ¬†I just call her my soul sister cause its got a better ring to it, and because I so often wish for a sister, I feel like she’s the closest thing I have… even though she’s normally so far away. ¬†Its really special to be able to spend time with her again, of everyone in my family she’s the one who reminds me the most of myself. Follow her blog if you aren’t already, she’s way more disciplined than I am and has lots of great fashion, fitness and food tips every day! ¬† We have a few more days left here, although today we leave the coast and my heart breaks a little – we are staying in the most beautiful house. ¬†I have a zillion photo’s that aren’t from instagram, I’ll put those up in a little while, but for now I’m just soaking it all in!

xo, aiyanajane

Things in my life are currently going swimmingly

Admittedly, the photo is not current. We were filling up the pool and too impatient to wait.   I was really excited to have these sunglasses, I miss them.

Admittedly, the photo is not current. We were filling up the pool and too impatient to wait. I was really excited to have these sunglasses, I miss them.

I like to use that phrase because I really like swimming¬†cause its super good for you, and my exercise/therapy of choice. (I credit it with healing my pelvis post-haste!) When I say something is going “swimmingly” ¬†most people give me a rather dry look. ¬†Whatever, some people find no amusement in such things as silly expressions, enjoy your boring lives.

Today, I am proud, and excited to say I am officially done college! You are looking at a real life Legal Administrative Assistant. ¬†I didn’t really seek out the typical college experience, I took a quick course and I loved it. ¬†I got an early practicum back in January, and since finishing it, have been working (like, for money)¬†in a law firm. So far, so good. ¬†One thing about blogging that actually surprised me is how many of my¬†favorite¬†bloggers are also lawyers. ¬†I think because of the commitment a blog takes (used to those long hours) and the need for a creative outlet after so much… law. ¬† How amazing would it be to work for Jenny, or a lawyer to be like Courtney? Everyone says I should go to law school, but the time.. and the loans.. THE COST! ¬†Too much for me, so I’m a lawyers go-to-girl instead. ¬†I had a job 5 months after starting my course, rather than after years of school and tons debt. ¬†I like to live vicariously though them, I dream of running off to LA or NYC all the time. ¬†Usually LA wins the mental battle royale because they don’t have snow there… its snowing in Alberta today. ¬†Thankfully for me, I only have one more day in this ¬†godforsaken province and then off to Denmark with my grandparents to visit our family, I’m especially excited to be reunited with the beautiful Andrea!¬†¬†Currently last minute packing and procrastinating as always. ¬†I will try to post a little while away, but it is a vacation!

Before I get to jet set away tomorrow my youngest brother graduates from high school. ¬†I would not say I am looking forward to enduring the long ceremony, but we’re pretty proud, so I’ll make an appearance I guess. ¬†I mean really, if he had failed, we would all have pretended not to be related to him, cause it is just high school, but still.. it’s a¬†momentous occasion, especially since he’s the youngest. I’ll share some photos after – homeboy is reppin’ the kilt and I cannot wait to see it.¬† If only I could stop over to see my family in Scotland while across the pond. ¬†Can’t have it all I suppose!

xo, aiyanajane

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natural makeup- how to

palm trees and a warm breeze

Ahhhh vacations who doesn’t love them? A sweet reprieve from the bitter cold and hopelessness that is winter on the prairie. The sun on your skin, sweat on your brow reminds us of summer love, simple makeup to keep you glowing.

To get this sunkissed look is easy, even if you haven’t been anywhere near the equator this winter. I focused on emphasizing my cheekbones and keeping the look neutral and natural.

Using this bronzer palette (physicians formula or body shop shimmer strips) and a powder brush I swept it into the  hollows of my cheek, and lightly over my neck and chest. It adds just a little shimmer to catch the light (and the fellas eyes am I right?). Then take a pink/berry based blush and apply with a brush to the apples of the cheeks. I use the classic staple; covergirl cheekers blush in deep plum.

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On my lips is one of my all time favourite products Clinique chubby stick in Chunky Cherry.  It gives sheer color and moisture. Plus its easy to throw in your bag to reapply and its not heavy like lipstick.
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For the eyes, I used the top few color strips of the bronzer (the light gold/rose colors) and just brushed it over the lids and crease. Easy peasy, use a shadow brush or  *gasp* your fingers. Then onto a couple coats of the best mascara ever (in my opinion, Benefit bad gal lash) to give you long, dark lashes.

Now, for my most important beauty rule. FILL IN YOUR DAMN BROWS. Everyone looks better with properly filled brows, its practically science. Youtube can show you how if your don’t already know, I use pencil (CG Eyemakers), some people use powder, do what you gotta do but fill those babies in. You can even get stencils from stores like Sephora to help you shape them, well groomed brows are SO important… If the eyes are the window to the soul, then don’t put hideous curtains over them. (Okay, not the best analogy but I’m going with it.)