Staycation @ Burrard

Here is a little glimpse from our stay at the Burrard in Vancouver, BC.

Kassie & I are from the suburbs, being downtown even for a short trip gave us a breath of creativity and rest. The Burrard has loads of character, and the friendliest staff. We felt very taken care of and were steps away from the cutest shops & restaurants.  

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After checking in we got changed & had dinner at the Warehouse (we sure love $5 food)! In the morning we had a waffle craving were able to grab a coffee from Elysian on our way out. The Burrard has amazing branding & social media presence, it feels like you are in California while still in the heart of Vancouver. 

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When staying at the hotel you get to use the cutest bikes! We took advantage of this perk for our photoshoot. Overall, if you want the best Instagram photos & loads of DM's wondering "where is that!", "that place is so cute" this is the place to be! 

LAX - Photogenic city

I fell in love with California in a whole new way. I have been to beautiful places, but I was in awe that every corner & every glance I took was extremely gorgeous. 

 

I had an assignment with Cafe Crepe and the city & beach was pretty much our studio. We captured so much West coast content for the brand. 

I had high expectations when I was told the skate park would blow my mind. I am far from a sk8r girl. To this day, that skate park is my phone wallpaper. 

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ACCOMODATION 

I stayed at the LEVEL FURNISHED LIVING (I woke up every morning thinking I was still dreaming), I felt like I was coming "home", I was able to unwind and this made editing hundreds of pictures so easy. 

I stayed in a one bedroom suite that had a stunning view - the kitchen included everything I needed to cook. I was a short walk away from Whole Foods and I bought a few ingredients to host dinner. I found myself using the pool & hot tub more than I regularly do when I stay in hotels. The entire aesthetic portrayed relaxation & comfort. 

COFFEE

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Butchers Daughter - I was obsessed with the greenery and colours of this cafe. (they also have a NY location)

SHOPPING 

 

I obviously suggest Target, there was a mall right by Level. I also shopped on Abbot Kiney Rd. while location scouting and there is everything from small boutiques, well known brands and cute cafe's. 

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Venice - Incredible skateboarders, Artists, Music and so much culture. 

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I left this city with multiple amazing shots, I felt like I was across the world but I was only a short flight away from home. I find so much joy in discovering new places. If you are looking for cheap flights - check out the Hopper app or Allegiant air. 

 

Happy Travelling, 

Cece xox

Instagram // the truth


Hey, what's up, hello. Incase you don't know me personally my name is Cecilia, people have always called me Cece (or other odd variations of that). I do a numerous amount of things but my heart is the most full when I'm encouraging community, being creative & worshiping through photography, dance or music.


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As I was editing my instavlog, I felt called to share something with you:

I wanted to remind people that life through someone's instagram account is often far from the entire truth. Especially mine. Even if some things are instant, a lot what I post is well curated, I get opinions from friends before posting, we take 20 of the same photo and then spend time editing a photo and revisit it later to make sure I'm happy with my work.

 

I know I value community, SO much. The problem was, I am not a huge quality time love language person, but I learnt that a lot of my friends didn't know how much I really loved them because I didn't always make the time. Ever since, I've set aside hours of my day to spend with people I hold close to my heart, people I want to get to know or at events where I can show that you can choose joy in the midst of crap in your personal life. That is why my life seems so "fun and "busy"!

 

I get upset when people meet me or haven't seen me in a while and say that my "life is so cool". It's SO not. I follow and know many people who do way more interesting things. Maybe I have learnt to make my one interesting activity of the day more exciting.

 

I have held off on posting any instavlogs since I got my laptop back because I heard that people thought I shared my life for a lot of the wrong reasons, including seeking attention and online validation. That really hurt my confidence because I want to capture my fav moments so I can re watch them, I'm sharing a product I'm doing an honest review for or I want to give others some fun activity ideas.

 

I post a couple boomerangs and pictures In a story. That is me sharing 1 minute of the day and that leaves 23 hours and 59 minutes of my life that is unseen. There are people I hang out with weekly that never make it on any of my social media because we are having so much fun or I just choose to keep that time between us. I often don't know where my phone even is and I'm the worst at replying to texts if I am around friends. I am alone for a majority of my day, I stay up late to edit or work in order to make up for the time I spent hanging out during the day. I'm working on it. I am setting reminders to text people back, creating structure in my workflow and I'm fully trusting that God has a plan for me in every season of life.

 

Posting on social media is my part time job. I literally went to school to learn how to understand marketing & social media communications. Which gave me an advantage to how I could use my blog and photography as a source of income. I wouldn't do it unless I loved it and felt that I was capable of using it in a positive and healthy way. I love seeing what everyone is up to on snapchat & instagram. I have made friends through these apps. I love how creative people are with their themes, story editing and photography skills! I am in awe when I see my youth kids sharing the gospel through these platforms. I think this is a safe place to show your talents, captured moments and your style. We need to just celebrate and be happy for each other, rather than compare and critique.

 

If you're reading this, I'm not sure where you are at. Maybe you see people on instagram and envy what they wear, how they look and what they are doing. Perhaps you are the one spending hours on VSCO and Facetune trying to make your picture perfect. I don't know, you could be someone who is living an entire different life through social media.

 

Some of the most worldwide famous people are weird. They are themselves ! They are so original and own it. This is going to sound cheesy. But own who you are. Just try it and let me know how that works out for you? Are you happier ? Because when I started being myself in every aspect of my life, even online... it really changed my life. Sometimes I'm sure I'm a little much to handle, my energy is a little over the top when I'm tired and I'm emotional over the smallest things. But I leave so many situations going wow, these people still love and want to hang out with me even if I'm borderline crazy. I hope you find those people, I hope you find a love for yourself and pride and ownership in your gifts that you've been given. You have something different that I do to share with the world, and I would love to see you using it to your fullest capacity.

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Cute spots // West Village Cafe

I am currently writing this post from this very cafe. West Village has become a second home to me and my friends. If you are looking for a spot to catch up, get some amazing photos or eat delicious food you seriously need to stop by.

This has been one of the most beneficial collaborations yet. I have had meaningful conversations and bumped into old friends in the last couple of months. The lighting is always beautiful and for some reason you feel like you're in a whole other city, when in reality you may be 10 minutes from home.

The entire idea behind this cafe according to owner Paul Bhangoo was to have a local place that revolved around community and for people to develop relationships. That dream became a reality and it is very evident when you step foot into their space. Hello's are exchanged, names are remembered and faces are familiar. It's our new go to! 

My fav drink to order: COCONUT MILK HOT CHOCOLATE

My fav smoothies: ANTIOXIDENT 

My fav mean: CHICKEN CHILLI SANDWICH

instagram: @west_village_cafe_

open 8am -8pm (such awesome hours!) 

website: www.westvillagecafe.ca

To my anxiety filled self

Dear you, yes you.

Let's talk about it.

It's ok to feel like the world is caving in, but guess what? It's not. Take a deep breath, take time for YOU. It's ok to be busy, and it's ok to have evenings to yourself or even an entire day if you must! It's ok that you have commitment issues, and you find it hard to let people in. it's ok to let people take care of you. Travelling and dreaming is no longer an issue, you've got this. Appreciate your friends, let them take your phone away if it's causing you stress, it's ok not to want to answer that text or email. But you'll have to do it eventually. The more you put off, the more it will add up. It's ok, not to be ok.

Don't let mental illness get in the way of what you are called and dream to do! Don't let whatever you've got going on in your mind be a label that defines you. (cheesy, I know).. instead...be an ambassador. Speak the truth, post the truth, capture the truth, be an encouraging ear for those who think no one can relate to them, because you canYou can start a movement, you can create, you can drive, go to school, get on a plane, jump off a cliff, hike a mountain, move out, say hi to that cute guy, speak in front of hundreds of people, you can do so much.. so what are you waiting for?  

Love me.

A tiny bit about my experience with anxiety. 

I always knew I was a little more anxious than other about certain things, I would find myself having panic attacks at what seemed like the most inconvenient times. Like why now? Why am I feeling like I need to get out of here when it is such a fun scene for everyone else. 

I still find myself complaining to close friends wanting to be normal, and wondering why I'm not because everything would be so much easier if I was, right? I know that's just the devil trying to get to me when I am weak. 

What does it feel like? It's certainly different for everyone. Sometimes I feel like I'm slowly chocking to the point where I'm gagging and occasionally throwing up. Other times I have a terrible migraine and my chest feels heavy. Sometimes my body is tense for an entire conversation or it's as if everyone in a crowded room is talking about me. Sometimes I just want to surround myself with plenty of friends to lift me up, then other times I disappear and fall off the face of the earth for a couple of hours.

I stay up and get so productive with things that may not even be priority. I sometimes have anxiety with people and I come off as very friendly and bubbly but my insecurities have often got in the way of what I want to do or say. I get so anxious wondering and expecting the worst when it comes to what specific people think of me. I hate not being liked. I will do whatever it takes for things to be good between us, or to change your perception. 

That's what I do, often I mess up a little bit and expect all hell to break loose. 

I struggle with slowing myself down. Sometimes my thumbs are moving so fast and i'm multi tasking and responding here and there that my brain can barely keep up. Travelling is something I love and I will not let anxiety get in the way of that. I try to surround myself with people who keep me healthy and accountable. Last year a new thing I became anxious about was trying to figure out what life is like when you are single and I struggled with that for a month. Then after a car accident I was prescribed medication that I stopped taking them because I couldn't sleep whenever when I took these anti-depressants. I am realizing that there are other ways to control your anxiety. Maybe it was easier for me than it is for others to not be on medication, but I will never regret that risky decision to stop. 

As a 20th birthday present to myself I got inked for the first time. A reminder to not be anxious & instead pray. I love it!!!

So..here I am now. I'm not perfect, I don't want to be branding myself superficially and make it all about free products, gaining numbers and selfish things. I just want to forget about likes and stop checking my blog analytics and just live everyday the way I want to live it.  

 

#BELLLETSTALK is an initiative that started to create open conversations about Mental Ilnesess', Don't let this just be for one day, let's continue to be open, loving, and as encouraging we are today as a nation.