How to not get sick on a germ infested airplane.

 

How to not get sick on a germ infested airplane.

I just flew back from Vancouver on Friday and I’m packing for a trip to London on Wednesday.

As I was walking through the Vancouver airport. I couldn’t help but think and worry about the coronavirus that seems to be spreading; especially since Vancouver has so many Chinese and Canadians flying in between both countries.

I’m always worried about getting the flu while traveling, and realistically, the flu will affect more flyers than the coronavirus will, but it still seems a bit scary.

My mom who never really worries about me, told me yesterday that I should get a mask to wear on the plane. And then this morning, my friend Shary, posted a video on how to protect yourself while flying.

So I am sharing a few tips from that video and a few others that I regularly practice.

Pre-flight

– Vitamine Boost: I load up on vitamines leading up to any important trip. Traveling is exhausting and you’re more likely to get sick if you’re run down and tired, so I try to be proactive.

– Hydrate: I drink a lot of water all the time. I feel it just helps your overall health, but if you aren’t a regular heavy water drinker, try to drink a more leading up to your flight.

In- Flight Tips

Tip # 1 – Disinfect! Disinfect! Disinfect!!

I’ve always known that the inside of an airplane is basically a giant petri dish. I used to try not to dwell on it, but I’ve just added disinfectant wipes to my travel bag. Moving forward, before sitting my butt down in my seat, I’ll be wiping down all surfaces; from my seat and headrest to my seatbelt buckle and window.

Tip # 2 – Rubber Glove It!

I think there is a fine line between being careful and being paranoid. I can’t see myself wearing gloves the whole flight, but I am packing a few pairs of latex gloves that I’ll put on if I need to go to the restroom. I suggest wearing them if you need to go and then pop them in a plastic baggy; the same one that you will put your used wipes in after your wipe down.

I try my best to avoid having to go to the rest room on flights. I load up on water the day before my flight, but I don’t drink a lot on the actual flight.

Tip # 3 – Drinks? No thank you!

This is going to be a hard one for some of you, but I suggest not drinking anything from the stewardess or steward in flight. For sure say no to the water they serve, it’s from a huge tank. Guess who else, besides me, don’t drink that water? Most flight crews!! They bring their own bottled water.

I  also suggest that you say no to anything served in one is those plastic cups. The air on planes is recycled, so don’t put your mouth on anything that is out in the open or that others are touching.

Ask for the can of pop and bring your own straw if you must? I bring my own water bottle that I sip during the flight.

Tip #4 – Have mask, will travel.

There were lots of travelers in Vancouver wearing masks in the airport and a few on my flight. I’ve never worn one before, but I just added a few to my travel bag. Coronavirus or not, there is nothing worse than boarding a long flight and hearing that one passenger cough that horrible cough, you know that super gross wet cough.

I think if you’re the one coughing, you should be the one wearing the mask; I wish the airline would hand them out to anyone who looks sick, mmmm what a great idea!

I will be putting a mask on if I get stuck sitting near anyone who looks or sounds sick; better safe than sorry.

Tip #5 – DO NOT USE RESTROOMS AIR DRYERS!!!

This tip is not just when you travel or fly, this needs to be a new lifestyle rule! And here’s why; a few years ago I was visiting casinos with my coworker, I’ll call her Mary, because that’s her name, lol. Anyway Mary and I were on the road in Vancouver actually, going from casino to casino, drinking lots of water and coffee along the way.

I’m pretty sure we visited a dozen casino restrooms (bathrooms for my US readers) that week and each one had those had air dryers.

The night before we left YVR, Mary said her throat was starting to tickle; and by the next morning she was full on sick with a fever.

We were on different flights; I kept checking in on her to see how she was doing. I felt so bad for her, traveling when you feel like shit is the worst!

I felt fine until that evening when I got home. Like Mary, my throat started to tickle and by the time I was ready for bed, I had a high fever.

Long story short, we were both sick with some funky antibiotic resistant strain of, I am not sure what? We both had several trips to the clinic and both of us needed several different types of meds before we got better.

I’ve never been that sick in my life; and in case you’re  wondering, yes I do get my flu shot every year.

While I was bed bound, I saw this report on how restroom air dryers are the perfect distributors for bacterias and germs. I will spare you the gory details, but I am convinced that’s how Mary and I got sick. And I’ve not use one of those air dryers since and I never ever willI again! I suggest you do the same.

Wish me luck on my next trip, I am going to do my best to stay healthy! Fly safe to all the snowbirds getting ready to head south.

It’s also a great to update your suitcase emergency stash every once in awhile. I’ve just bought new supplies for mine.

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Since I travel a lot, I have things that I don’t unpack. In addition to my emergency pack, I also have a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, a razor and a lint brush that stay in my suitcase. It makes packing a lot quicker!

Oh and I have some cool, super cute, oui-liette travel stuff coming up shortly!!

Thanks for reading, be well!! Like, share or leave a comment!

muah!

Liette

Facebook: @oui-liette

 

 

 

 

Party Animals – Tips On How To Throw A Wild Party

Party Animals – Tips On How To Throw A Wild Party

2020 is a big year for my friends and I. We’re all having big birthdays, like big, big! As a result, I’ll be hosting a few fun dinner parties, with cool themes of course.

Pick a theme

I love this party animal theme, it’s perfect for a child’s party or baby shower, but I am using it for an adult party. I think the party animal adult twist is clever.

My advice to picking a theme is to find something that inspires you and theme the shit around it!!

Invitations

Your invitations will set the tone for your party, so be as creative and corny as possible.  I was so excited to find these animals, I think they’re super adorable.

If you’ve read any of my other party posts, you may have noticed that I love puns, I think they’re punny! The cornier the better as far as I am concerned. The text for my invitations are always a bit ridiculous.

One of the apps that I use for my invitations and blog posts is called Snapseed.

Front

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Back – these two are my favs!!

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Decor

These little guys were the inspiration for my party theme.

I bought a bag of plastic animals at the dollar store then painted and glued on pompoms and party hats. I’m not going to lie, I had a lot of fun crafting them.

I made them at my moms house; she brought out a TV tray for me to set up all my paints and my hot glue gun. I love that she still uses TV trays!!

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I am obsessed with these little guys, they’re so freaking cute!

I bought a plastic green platter and glued my party animals on it. I think that some of my animals were already drunk, because a few of them could barely stand up!

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I threw some confetti on the tray and voilà!! A party animal centerpiece.

I just moved into my new downtown place; my furniture from Las Vegas finally arrived and my white cabinet fits in perfectly! It’s a great place to set up a bar or a food station.

It’s also easy to decorate and theme. The green feathers are not just for the party, it’s a permanent fixture, but it does add an extra punch of color to my theme.

If you follow my oui-liette Facebook page, you may have seen the video of my crazy cousins helping me decorate. They suggested that I not center my green feathers above my cabinet, they thought that it would be more interesting hung to the side; they were right.

I bought a giant brass giraffe head to fill the blank space. I bought him before I decided on my animal theme, but he fits in perfectly! Sometimes things just all come together.

I think I need to name him, any suggestions? For the party I added a Wild One party hat on him. He may become my party mascot?

My new fav decorating things are tissue paper flowers. They are easy to make, inexpensive and great space fillers.

I added a bunch to the top of my cabinet, love them! To make them take tissue paper sheets, the bigger the sheets, the bigger the flower. Stack them, five or six high. Fold them accordion style then tie the middle. Then gently pull the sheets apart. If you didn’t make these in school, YouTube them.

Table Setting

Some party themes require elegance and restraint, this isn’t one of those. Your table needs to look like an out of control party, so more is more.

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I dug out my most colorful dinner wear; these plates have blue polka dots and the napkins are all kinds of pink.

This was my first dinner party in my new place, so out came my new crystal glasses!! They’re from Nova Scotia Crystal, the Luna pattern; they have polka dots. I ❤️ polka dots!

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Since more is more, I cut ribbon and threw them all over the place and I had some pompoms left from my crafting night, so I dumped them on the table too.

This was probably one of my easiest themes and one of the cutest. What do you think?? Yay? Or nay?

Thanks for reading!! Check out my Facebook page for more party pics and new downtown decor updates! @oui-liette

muah!!

Liette

 

 

Taking It Off Finale – Month 6

Taking It Off Finale – Month 6

Week 26

Here we are, the first week of 2020. And I DID IT!!! I hit my goal of 30 + a few extra pounds the first week of December!! I averaged 1.8 pound per week. My first few weeks were all over the place. I would gain 2 pounds one week and then lose 4 the next week, but eventually it evened out.

What’s my secret? Wait for it; I ate less!! You’re welcome!! Who knew?? I am going to reveal this new secret in a book and make millions of dollars.

My big ah, ha moment was that losing weight is one big mind game. You can tell yourself that you want to lose weight, but until your mind is 100% in the game, I don’t think you can be successful?

It also takes awhile for your mind to let you see that you’re changing. The first time I was like; holy shit, you’re doing it! Was when I saw this picture below that my friend took of me on one of our outings. I usually avoid full body shots, because they have made me feel fat and bad about myself. This was the third week of October, I was down 24 ish pounds at the time. And obviously my body was changing, but my mind hadn’t caught up yet until I saw this pic.

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By mid November I was down almost 30 pounds and ready for my inspiration outfit. To recap, I wanted to wear a sequin skirt and top that had been hanging in my closet for three years.

Well it turns out the skirt ended up being too big for me!!! So I never got to wear it, but I am fine with that!

Here I was feeling my best self the night of the Mariah Carey Christmas concert. Ok, I may also have been feeling a few lemon drop martinis?

Since your mind can play games with you, I think taking pictures are a great way to gauge how you’re doing, because the camera doesn’t lie, but filters do! But that’s cheating.

It can be hard to stay motivated, especially when your mind is feeding you negative messages, you need to find ways to shut that shit down. Remember when I was having a bad week and went to the grocery store and walked around holding a ten pound bag of potatoes? That may have sounded silly, but it helped re-set my mind.

I was feeling like I wasn’t getting anywhere, that it was taking too long; I wasn’t seeing results, I was feeling discouraged because I was only down ten pounds. Physically walking around holding ten pounds of potatoes showed me how heavy that is and how much I had accomplished.

The point here is that I had to find concrete visible or tactile ways to prove to myself that I was succeeding, because there were times that my mind was trying to sabotage me. Why? Maybe because change is harder than the status quo??

I did base myself on Weight Watchers knowing it wasn’t a diet, these were new habits that I needed to adopt for life.

I had to create new habits and train my mind to think differently. I started questioning myself and still do every day; I ask myself why I am eating? Am I hungry? Or am I bored or upset?

And the questions don’t stop there, when I am eating I take breaks and ask myself if I am still hungry? I’ve found that 1/3 of my meal is enough. So I pack it up and eat some of it or all of it later.

I also realized that I need something sweet everyday. In the past I would have denied myself and then lost it and pigged out. On Weight Watchers as long as you allow points for your treats you can eat whatever you want, in moderation of course.

So if I want a cookie, I get a cookie! But again I talk to myself. I don’t eat the whole thing, well sometimes I do, but most times I figure out that  half or a few bites are enough to satisfy me. I have shared my tricks with a few people who have said that they could never just eat half a cookie. Yes you can!! I don’t give the rest away, I earned that damn cookie, it’s mine! I save it for later. So instead of having two, or three cookies at 6 points each I have one, but I make it last.

That’s been my approach, but everyone needs to find their own tricks.

Personally, I believe that for me to succeed I need to be mindful of why I’m eating, what I’m eating and how much I’m eating.

I’ve proven to myself that I am a great loser, but I have yet to prove that I’m a great maintainer. If I was, it would be one and done, but sadly it doesn’t work that way. I am sure everyone reading this has also proven that they can lose, the losing part is easier than the keeping it off part.

I also don’t think we’re always realistic when we set out to lose weight. We imagine or fantasize about how life will be different or better if we’re 30 pounds lighter. First of all, you’re the same person, there is just a little less of you. Losing weight won’t make you more confident or happier. Can it help you feel better? Yes, but you’re the same person with the same issues you had before.

So you need to figure your shit out. If you’re an emotional eater, like me, and you do manage to lose weight, but you haven’t found other ways to deal with your emotions, you’re eventually going to gain the weight back.

That’s my thing, I was using food to cope with feelings. If I want to maintain I’ll need to check myself regularly to make certain I don’t fall back into old habits.

Losing weight is exciting. Yes it’s hard, but there is a payoff when you step on that scale every week and you’ve had a good week, you get a rush and a sense of accomplishment. You don’t have that feeling when you’re maintaining. If you stay the same, you’re relived, but if you’ve gained then you have failed.

That’s been my internal dialogue in the past, I tend to be an all or nothing type of girl and I can be hard on myself. If I’m not winning then I must be losing. I am trying to come up with a new, kinder and gentler inner dialogue. I’m currently figuring that out.

Take a look at the pics below, the one on the left was last winter and the one on the right was taken a few days ago. Side note, it’s been exactly one month since my nose surgery, I had a small cancerous thing removed off the bridge of my nose. It’s still a little red, but wow, it’s healing well! I was worried. I am no nutritionist, but I assume that healthy eating and lots of water have helped my body heal itself?

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I’m proud to report that I survived the holidays without gaining weight! And that included moving in with my mom while I waited for my furniture to arrive from the US. I did have to tell her to stop buying cheesies!!

I do want to lose a bit more weight, but 30 seemed more mentally manageable, so that was my initial goal. Be realistic and break it up if your goal number is intimidating, go for 10 at a time.

I hope this series has helped motivate you a little? Just so you know, I am a middle aged woman who has gone up and down like most of you reading. I don’t have any special weight loss talent or secret; so if I can do it you can do it too…again! Because like me, I’m sure you’ve been there, done that and have the t-shirt.

We’re all flawed and do our best to survive, so  if you aren’t ready to make big changes, that’s ok too. Start small, start drinking more water. Before you chow down on something you know probably isn’t the best choice, down a big glass of water, it will take up some of the available room in your tummy and make you feel full faster.

And finally, can we stop judging each other? You know what I am talking about; she’s too thin, she’s too fat, she thinks she’s better than everyone else…. No, she’s just doing the best she can with the challenges she’s dealing with that you know nothing about.

My goal for myself for 2020 is to use all the tools and tricks that I’ve picked up in the past 6 months to stay on track and to be kinder to myself. I will do my best, sometimes my best will be awesome and other times I’m certain that the best that I can muster will be far from perfect. I need to remind myself that that doesn’t mean that I am failing.

Bonne chance!

muah,

Liette

The incredible shrinking cheeks!

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Taking It Off, Month 4!!!

Taking it off, month 4!!

Week 13

When you start a weight loss or a health journey, I think you just want to fast forward to month 4; I know I did because it takes awhile to see results and who are we kidding, patience is not one of my most shining virtues. But if you stick with it, each week’s small loss do start to add up.

I have one week left before we start setting up for our biggest show of the year. I don’t think people really know what I do exactly, that includes my family; most think I fly around and do fancy things.

I do trade shows for a large gaming company. The biggest gaming show in the world happens every fall in Las Vegas. On Thursday, I will be moving to the strip for 10 days.

Our booth is 25,000sq ft, we set up close to 400 slot machines. It will take a staff of 30 of our employees and an additional 20 support staff, five days to get it all done.

Our booth will have a bar, a lounge and a second level VIP area. We have 11 meeting rooms, in our booth and 7 other various, demo, storage and server rooms.

We send 600+ people to this show; we host a big reception in our booth and sales training the day before the show opens. We rent out the Omnia Nightclub in Caesar’s for our customer party on day 1 of the show. My team and I coordinate all of that, along with registering all our staff and coordinating hotel rooms.

So it’s a lot and it’s a bit stressful. For set up, our first few days will be 10 hours days easily. The guys bring in donuts for breakfast, lunch is pizza, chips and candy. And when the show starts, we are in the booth all day and then go out to eat dinner, usually late at night.

One of the good things is that we don’t stop; one year we all had Fitbits and if you hadn’t hit 11,000 steps before noon, you were a slacker! We don’t do the Fitbits anymore because “someone” was too “competitive”…whatever! Lol

I have a full week before we start so I need to load up on fruits, vegetables and vitamines. I usually get sick after this show, because it’s so easy to get run down.  But not this year!!!

Week 14

What a week!!! I was on the strip all week for our big show. And, just as I suspected, there were lots of sugary snacks!!!

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I managed to navigate without gaining a single pound this week! I also walked my butt off and, truth, be told; I was hoping to lose weight this week, but I am more than happy with staying flat.

I have to say, traveling when you feel good and comfortable in your skin is so much easier! I hate that feeling of not liking anything in your suitcase! We had a group dinner on Wednesday night and I must say, I felt sassy and confident!!

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I am so close to my goal!! Just to recap, my goal is 30 pounds. I started my weight loss journey at the end of June; it’s currently, Oct 19, so it may seem like the pounds are just flying off, but it’s been almost 4 months!!

This coming week, I will be on vacation in Moncton. Ahhh Moncton, you have so many of my favorite yummy comfort foods! My goal is going to be to maintain and not gain any weight!! That being said, life is short! So if I indulge a bit too much one day, the plan is to adjust the following days! Sounds easy enough right?

In case you’re curious to what’s on my Moncton menu: lobster, mussels, fish and chips, a râpé (Acadian dish of potatoes and pork fried in lard)…oh and I may need a turkey dinner since I missed Canadian Thanksgiving? Ok, that sounds like a lot…ok, I may be in trouble???

Week 15

I survived my “vacation” to Moncton without gaining weight!! I actually lost a pound.

It’s funny how most of our social interactions are centered around food. When dining out I stayed away from the bread they put on your table and I drank lots and lots of water. I also, pretty much only ate half or a bit less than half of everything on my plate. I made sure I was satisfied without being stuffed.

I felt that I needed a change, so I decided to go pink! See below. Just kidding, it was Halloween, but doesn’t this look like my real hair??? I do feel like I am changing and it feels good.

My skinny jeans are starting to sag in the butt, I may need to pick up a new pair soon? 😁

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Week 16

I flew back from the East Coast to Las Vegas for a few days before I had to fly to Calgary for a small work event. This has been a really busy few months. I rarely complain about my travel schedule, but I am pretty much exhausted.

I am looking forward to this upcoming long weekend, the weather is finally cooler in Vegas so I hope to get some hiking in.

I am in Calgary for a short conference, we just had our group dinner. I had a petite filet mignon that was dripping in butter and I feel gross! It’s 10:40pm and I am just laying on my bed feeling full! It’s really the first time since June that I feel this full and yucky!!

We have another customer dinner tomorrow night, my goal will be to fill up on vegetables and maybe skip meat? I am learning that it’s all about balance. I think I need a new rule though, no more big meals after 7:30 at night, it’s not worth feeling this yucky!!

Sooo I stayed flat this week which is fine. What I’ve learned from weight watchers and have been doing often is that if I splurge one day, the following day I try to eat free point meals.

Their program considers all fruits and vegetables as zero points, because who are we kidding, bananas aren’t to blame for our fat asses. The exception is corn, potatoes and avocados. Also chicken and eggs are now zero points. So the day after I have treated myself, I make myself a big fluffy veggie omelette, so zero points.

I have one month before I pack up my life and move back to Canada, so month 5 should be busy!

muah!

Liette

 

 

Taking It Off! Month 3

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Week 9

Week 8 was a bit of a struggle mentally, but I am starting week 9 with more mental calmness.

Reaching out to my little brother for encouragement and support may not have been the best idea?  Here is the pic I sent him and our text exchange.

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Note to self, don’t look to others for comfort and support…oh and brothers are annoying!! Lol. We like to tease each other. He is tall and lanky, I am not!! I will plot my revenge!!

Not that his comments got to me, but I’ve decided to smile in my monthly selfies moving forward.

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Week 9 pic, smiling and have some makeup on, not because my brother said I looked old!!

I haven’t shared anything to date about what I have been eating. My first month or so I was diligently counting my points. As the weeks went bye, I felt like I knew what I could eat without being so obsessed with tracking.

For the last three weeks, I’ve tried to listen to my body and the pounds seem to be falling off nicely. I am not obsessing over food and I am trying to really be mindful of my emotions and not using food to sooth me.

Last night I ate out with a friend, I ordered pasta and it was delish!! I ate maybe 1/4 of what was on my plate. I put my fork down and asked myself if I was satisfied? Not out loud, that would be weird! Turns out I was satisfied and I wasn’t hungry anymore, so I boxed it up and brought it home.

I am realizing that I don’t have to end each meal or snack feeling super full…who knew?!

Will I go back to counting my points? Maybe? But this is working for me now.

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This is the snack that I have pretty much every night. Two graham crackers, some chocolate chipits and a few marshmallows. I pop them in the toaster over and voilà!! Just enough sweetness; I don’t deprive myself of anything.

Week 9’s weigh in is an impressive 0.6 pounds! But, that’s ok, because I figured out why I was so cranky and off last week; oh the joys of being a woman! I am pretty sure I am retaining a good 7 pounds of water!! Lol, ok, maybe 2??

I am a bit worried about next week, I’ll be out of town for work, eating in restaurants, for a full week. I will do my best to make good choice, let’s see how I make out.

Week 10

I left Vegas on Friday, it’s now Sunday night and not being able to follow my new eating routine is getting me down. Plus I am feeling super stressed about my upcoming event, I am fighting really hard to not stress eat.

Oh, I should add that our first night here we ended up at a pub for dinner where everything on the menu was super fatty. My coworkers devoured warm pretzels with cheese sauce. I resisted, I had 3 wings, a small slice of pizza and like 10 glasses of water!!

It’s 9:30pm, Monday night, and I just finished dinner, ugh!!! Being on the road is hard!! I don’t like eating dinner that late.

It’s Friday and I just got back from Arkansas, I’ll get weighed tomorrow morning and to be honest, I have no clue what the hell the scale will read? I could be up 5 pounds or down 5?

Week 10 weigh in and I am down 1.2!! For a grand total of 17.8 pounds!! This week was so busy that I didn’t eat properly; one day, I had a cookie for lunch, not cool. But I am back home and my fridge is full of healthy stuff.

Week 11

I am starting the week psyched! I just tried on my inspiration outfit, which is a sequin pencil skirt and a black top; both I bought because I loved, but they were both too small, and now they fit!!

Ok can we talk about that last statement for a minute? Why do woman buy things that don’t fit us?? We buy with the goal that we will lose weight, but we usually don’t! And those articles hang in our closet silently judging us and making us feel bad!! I bought that skirt 3 years ago!!! Although I am proud that it finally fits, I bought it 3 years ago!!! I am making a vow to myself that I will stop buying things that don’t make me feel fabulous and fit.

Back to my inspirational outfit; I am going to see Mariah Carey’s Christmas concert in November. My friends and I bought tickets in June and knowing I was ready to start my weight loss journey, I told my friend that my goal was to fit into this outfit by November.

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Ok, so, this doesn’t look fabulous laying on my bed, lol, but trust me both pieces are really nice! The top is off the shoulder, but with long sleeves.

I woke up the day before my weekly weigh in and instead of losing, I am proud to say that I found something; I found my waistline!!! I was losing hope that I would ever see her again, lol.  I am excited for tomorrow’s weigh in. I am feeling really good this week, so I will be fine whatever the scale has to say. (Like the scale just randomly spits out numbers and I have no accountability on the numbers, lol)

I am happy with week 11th  weigh in, but I’ve decided that I am not going to share my weekly numbers until I reach my goal of 30 pounds. I am going to hold back to create a bit of surprise and anticipation!! I will share if I’ve had a good week or a bad week and my struggles and victories.

Week 12

First of all, let me say that I am really proud of myself for making it to week 12!!! I feel really good, I feel lighter, spiritually, not just physically.

Work is super busy, my biggest event of the year starts next week, but I am feeling like “I got this!”. I also attended my third and final grief counseling and I think it really helped.

That being said, the only things I felt like eating this week were chocolate or sweet things! I do have one sweet treat a day, but this week, I seriously wanted to eat cookies at every meal. Not just at every meal, for the meal!!

I did resist and I am looking forward to my weigh in tomorrow morning. If all goes well, I may need a celebratory cookie!! Lol

My weigh in went well, slow and steady wins the race. I am down a size and a half-ish!!

I can’t wait to go back to Moncton and see my family and show them how I am doing. Two more weeks!!!

Bring on month 4!

muah!

Liette

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Host a Holiday 5 à 7 Like a Pro!!

Host a Holiday Cinq à Sept Like a Pro!! Tips from a professional events boss.

My English friends are probably asking themselves what the hell is a cinq à sept? It’s basically a cocktail party/ happy hour from 5pm to 7pm. I think it sounds fancier if you say the numbers in French, lol.

Do you get kicked out at 7? No of course not…well maybe? It all depends who’s hosting, lol.

Why should you host your own 5 à 7? Well the holidays are so busy, a Happy Hour is a great way to get people together without having to commit to a full evening. It’s also a bit more casual and the best part of hosting a 5 à 7 is that you don’t have to go out! They will come to you!!

I hosted one this week in my mother’s apartment which isn’t super big, but I like small spaces, they’re cozy.

In this post I am going to share 5 party tips that I use in my corporate events that will help you pull off a flawless 5 à 7/party…you’re welcome!!

Tip #1 Good Vibes Only

When you’re thinking of hosting an event, you need to put some thought into what vibe you want to create?

Is it a dinner party? A big blow out drinking party? Or a chill cocktail party? It’s your party so you get to decide.

Think of it this way, if you jump in your car and start driving without knowing where you’re going, how will you know when you get there?

Once you decide what vibe you want to create, stay consistent and focused; having a clear vibe vision will make your planning easier.

My vibe was a casual, yet fancy happy hour! You maybe thinking, aren’t casual and fancy polar opposites? Maybe to some people? But I am complicated, lol.

I wanted people to feel relaxed and comfortable, so that is the casual part, but it’s Christmas, so it also needed to be fancy, but not fussy.

I guess that’s not the only vibe I was going for. I’ve invited 15 woman who have helped my mother and I get through this past year; 2019 has been sucky! My father got sick and passed away and these woman were there for us so I wanted to do something nice to thank them. But, my goal was for it to be a celebration and not too sad.

I did have a few tricks up my sleeve to make it fun!! See tip 5, Expect the Unexpected.

2. Zone Out

The key to entertaining is to be organized and to create defined zones, especially if you are working with a small space.

So what do I mean by creating zones? When I am planning a corporate event, we have defined areas for each activity or stage of the party. There is always a welcome/reception area when you first walk in, there are food stations, bars, a seating/social area and sometime a dance floor.

When hosting my own parties, I go through the same process. What will happen when my guests arrive? If you’re hosting a larger event and will be running around a bit, designate someone to be the greeter. This person will greet guests at the door and take their coats. BTW, it’s more than ok to give your friends and family members jobs.

Once your guests arrive what do they do next? Create a flow so they don’t have to think about it, the goal is to make the flow instinctive.

I think it’s always good to get them drinking as soon as possible, not to get them drunk, but to get them jolly and maybe just a little merry?

My mother’s kitchen is tiny, so the bar was set up in the spare bedroom, which is just off of the living room. I cleaned the top of the dresser off and voilà, it’s a bar!!

The day before or a few days before set up your bar with everything you’ll need, but the ice. Walk through it, do you have everything you will need?? The more you can do leading up to the party, the more free time you’ll have during the party to have fun wit your guests.

For larger parties, have someone be the bar tender, at least for the first round.

I like having a signature drink, the hostess or host should be responsible for what is needed for the signature drink. You don’t have to stock a full bar, but it’s nice to offer your guest at least one drink upon their arrival.

I had a Christmas themed mimosa, which was champagne and cranberry juice, but since not everyone loves champagne, referring to myself; I’ll also be serving Caesar’s, which is a super popular Canadian drink.

I won’t have any beer or wine, those with their hearts set on beer or wine can bring their own. If you’re attending a party and have very specific taste, please bring your own drinks.

So your guests have arrived and were greeted at the front door; someone took their coats and they have their first drink in hand, now what? We call this process the run of show, walk through everything from start to finish.

Next is the main part of the party so feed them and let them mix and mingle. It’s during this stage that you bring out the special touches, keep reading for examples.

After my party, I noticed that I didn’t have many pictures, because I was so busy hostessing. I was pretty bummed until my friend Nadine sent me a bunch of pictures she had taken. Even though I am a pro, I did forgot to ask someone to be the paparazzi for the evening. For our corporate events we usually hire a photographer who roams and takes pics. Thank you Nadine!

3. Bust a Move

This tip has nothing to do with dancing, but feel free to dance if you want to! Do you boo!! Lol. Bust a Move here means move furniture out or in, re-purpose the function a room to fit your party needs.

As mentioned above I moved my bar into the spare bedroom and since I love to decorate this room has it’s own vibe.

I bought a huge wreath and had my brother hang it. I added some pink balls, because I love pink and the headboard in this room is a plush hot pink velvet. I think it looks fantastic and it makes the room smell festive! Seriously, are you really surprised that this event has some pink touches?? Lol

If you’re repurposing a bedroom make sure to clear off the bedside tables and put small personal stuff away.

Since it’s winter in Canada, my guests arrived wearing coats. The old, throw the coats on the bed always works, but since my mother has a closet in her entrance, we moved all her coats and stuff out so that we can use this closet as our cost check. Why did I move what was already in there? So we didn’t have to cram coats in. I put them back after.

The point is to look at all available spaces in different ways, don’t be afraid to move stuff around. My mom has a large recliner in her living room, yup, we moved it to her bedroom because it’s just too big.

Change things up! If you’ve been in your house for years and always have every tree and snowman in the exact same place year after year. Please Bust a Move and keep it fresh!

Example, my mother always puts her Christmas tree in the alcôve of her big picture window. I took down her curtains and added green garlands around her window.

If I am being honest, she didn’t look impressed when I told her I was taking down her curtains. She said, can’t you put the garlands around the curtains?…no! I just couldn’t, lol. Once the garlands were up she loved them and it makes her living room look bigger. She had never thought of doing this, but loves it!!

4. Light It Up!

I’ve mentioned this before, but lighting can make or break your soirée. Don’t ruin your vibe by having harsh lighting, dim the lights, light your candles and tree!!!

So it turns out that my mother doesn’t have dimers on her lights, maybe Santa will get her some for Christmas? So getting the lighting just right was challenging, but we managed.

5. Expect the Unexpected

I think each party should include something special or unexpected. It doesn’t have to be too complicated. A small touch or an activity will help to help make your event memorable.

Years ago at one of my Halloween parties I had a fortune teller; ok it was one of my cousins, but she seriously has mad psychic abilities!! It was just for fun, people were lined up to sit with her.

For my Holiday 5 à 7, I had a few special things planned. When I chose the date, one of my cousins (not the psychic, another one, I have lots!), told me that Dec 12 was her birthday. So of course, we had a birthday cake for her, but that wasn’t our only extra thing.

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The whole reason for this soirée was to thank our female tribe, fyi 80% are family members; aunts, sisters and cousins…we are a force!! Lol

I wanted to send them home with a small meaningful gift that would remind them of my father. I found none tacky angel wings tree ornaments at Pier 1 Imports and they are lovely. The fact that they were 40% off when I was shopping was certainly divine intervention!!

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The only male at this party was my nephew Jack. When I told him about the gifts, he said, that’s sort of depressing! He was sort of, kind of, half right. I suspect that this would be a touching moment, but my intention was never to send people home depressed; so I came up with a brilliantly funny way to give them out.

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I bought a Santa Suit on Amazon for $30 and Jack showed up as Santa and handed them out. It was funny and entertaining.

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Our Christmas Eve dinner them this year will be Winter Wonderland, we have a different theme each year. Our after dinner game will be giant jenga! Try to add something fun or unexpected to your events.

Another easy idea is to buy a Polaroid camera and snap away during the party or create a selfie photo background with props; people will dig it, trust me.

Tip 6. Stay Cool

This is a bonus tip, do as much pre-planning as you can so that you can enjoy your guests, because in the end that’s the whole point.

Remember that nothing is perfect! Do as much pre-planning, but the day of and during let shit go!! Roll with the punches and laugh off any mishaps.

I get my love for entertaining from my mother who is the most chill hostess ever! Be mindful that if the host or hostess isn’t having fun, your guests probably aren’t either.

I hope you can incorporate one or more of my tips for your next party! Let me know which one resonates with you the most?

Go forth and entertainment!! 🎅🏻💋

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This post is dedicated to my dad and my aunt Janet, who have both just passed away. Please be kind especially during this time of year. The holidays can be a very hard time of year for a lot of us, so don’t be an asshole. It’s also ok to acknowledge that you are thinking of someone who you know is doing their best to make it through the holidays for various reasons. Pretending everything is normal or perfect can make them feel more alone; just my two cents.

muah!

Liette

 

 

Time for a quickie?

Time for a quickie?

This post is for my oui-liette subscribers, first of all THANK YOU!! I so appreciate that you took the time to sign up for my blog and that you are faithful readers.

In the next few weeks I will be sharing a post called, You’re So Vain. Which is really, I’m So Vain, but You’re sounds better, lol.

I’ve had a skin cancer scare, I am fine, but I do look like I’ve been in a bar fight; and in my fake bar fight, I won of course, lol.

So I just wanted to give you a heads up, if you are at all squeamish, you may want to skip it, as I will be sharing a few pics that show what I looked like right after my procedure. Which really isn’t that bad, but I have a friend who can’t even listen to someone talk about getting stitches or blood without almost passing out, lol. I want to be sensitive to “those” kind of people.

If I am being honest, my first instinct is to hide away and resurface when I am all healed up, but that’s not real life, blah!!! Ugh!!! Lol.

The next thing that I wanted to share is that if you read my posts directly from your emails, this is what you see:

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Which is perfectly fine, but if you click on the title of the post, it will bring you to my site, which has a few extra pics.

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You will see my header, which changes by the season and my feature image.

And finally, this week I am moving my life back to Canada! I’ve been in Las Vegas for the past three and a half years and it’s time to go back. I will be sharing more posts about my little corner of the world, which is so lovely.

My little blog started off with a bang!! I had great momentum and then my father got sick and passed away. During that time, my blog kept me sane and kept my mind busy; I was pumping out content regularly.

For the past few months I’ve been less consistent; I guess I’ve been mourning and will be for a long time to come. But! The passing of my dad has only reinforced the theme of my blog which is, life is short, live it!!

That’s how my father lived his life and that’s how he would want me to live mine. So everyday, I get my butt out of bed and tell myself, today will be a good day damn it!

Full disclosure, it doesn’t always work, but that’s ok, at least I am trying.

My last, last thing, is that I’ve been on a weight loss journey and will be posting my results in the new year. You may have noticed my cheeks getting a bit slimmer, lol?

I decided that food had been helping me cope with what was happening in my life. Like millions of people out there I was/am an emotional eater. Which was obviously what I needed to do I guess, because I survived without taking a nervous breakdown, so yay me! In June, I decided that I was ready to start using other copping mechanisms, so stay tuned for that.

There you have it, you’re all caught up on my stuff! With the holidays creeping up on us, make certain to get your butt out of bed every morning and tell yourselves that it’s going to be a good day damn it!!! 😬

Merci, talk soon, muah!

Liette

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