October Is Customer Appreciation Month

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March Recap ?❤️

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Hello Bellas!

This month I had the pleasure of celebrating Women’s International Day which is something that is very near and dear to my heart so much so that we decided at Bella that we were going to celebrate all month long. Did you get a chance to checkout our Facebook page to see our famous women quotes? Which one was your favourite? Send us a message and let us know!

We started the month off with our fabulous draw (make sure to check out our Facebook page for our daily updates!) of the Celeste serum and our very own Céleste Lévis’s CD. The City of Timmins is so proud of the things that Céleste has been able to accomplish in such a short period of time. She is our own shining star. Congrats to Manda Lavigne who won the contest!

Inspiring women has always been a passion of mine. I think that women need to help each other achieve their goals in order for us to succeed together. Sharing each other’s stories along with the ups and downs that got us to where we are is how others will start believing in themselves and take their entrepreneurial spirit into full swing.

I live by the motto:

“Dream. Vision. Set Goal

Make it happen

No barriers”

If you don’t believe in what you do then no one else will. Believe in yourself and things will happen for you.

I had the honour last year of speaking at the “I Am” conference that was held at Thériault high school. The conference consisted of different speakers from different field talking about their success and how they got to where they are today. Being able to organize this event that has always bee

n a dream of mine and to speak about my journey and my business was amazing to me. I always believe I could achieve what I set my mind to and it was very important for me to share that with other women.

 

Speaking at this conference has encouraged me to pursue different avenues in my career and expand my horizons. I have had the honour of mentoring and assisting my daughter to pursue her dreams and passions while being by her side every day. I am very eager for her to come back from maternity leave to see what else we can accomplish together.

I am thrilled to announce that we will be doing an Women Empowering Women’s series and I will be showcasing wonderful women from the community who have established themselves in the city as business women, parents and community leaders. Make sure to watch our fist episode with Celeste Levis, and watch out for our second one coming out this May with special guest Karine Briand.

Make sure to stat tuned into our Facebook and Emails this April, we have lots of fun stuff coming up. Including the Home Show and Sportsman Show here in Timmins. I have brought in lots of new products from different companies that are just fabulous and I cannot wait for you to see.

Have a good day Bellas!

February Recap! ❤️⭐️

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Hello Bellas,

This last month has been a month filled with family time here at Bella Esthetics. We celebrated some big birthday milestones, valentine’s day and family day weekend. I hope you were all able to spend some time with your families and loved ones this month. Let me share our month with you!

We celebrated my Mom’s birthday, the big 8-0 this year! We spent some time together celebrating her life surrounded by family. My sister Danielle, who is currently in Florida, came up to surprise my mom at her party. The look on my mom’s face was priceless; she was smiling ear to ear. She was extremely excited to see us all together in her honour.

Her birthday was not the only big one year, my dad also turned 80!!!! We all got together to throw my dad a surprise party, and was he ever surprised! My dad’s birthday was February 17th and he was lucky enough to head down to Florida and avoid this cold weather we’ve been getting. Have fun in Florida Dad!!!!

Mom loved my sister Diane’s surprise arrival to her party! Definitely one to remember!!

My dad loved his surprise party that we all put on for him! He was definitely loving some time with Camille as well!

Family birthdays were not the only ones being celebrated this month, a few friends, clients, and my nephew also got to party and celebrate themselves on their special day. The whole month of February exploded with birthday love for all those celebrating.

Just for you Bella’s we had a great draw for a free manicure this month! (did you see our Facebook contest? Make sure to check out our page… we have a few more surprises up our sleeve this year). We wanted to thank all of you for the love and support through the contest! We loved reading your comments. Congratulations again to Jane Deyne who was the winner of the FREE manicure!

Our month got even busier with the long weekend for family day. It was a time for us to regroup and spend some time in nature. I took a long walk with Lia, the two dogs and of course my beautiful granddaughter Camille. We finished off the weekend with a nice bonfire to warm us up and had a blast sharing the kitchen with everyone for our meals. My favourite part of the weekend (other than family time of course) was the muffins we made. SOOOO delicious!!! They were Carrot & Apple muffins… I’ll give you the recipe below and you can tell me how they turned out on our Facebook page.

Enjoyed a nice Family Day walk with Lia, Camille, and the dogs! Such a lovely day!

Enjoying a lovely bonfire with family and friends!

Thanks for checking in Bella’s and I look forward to hearing what you have done for your family day weekend!

SNEAK PEAK! … We believe that empowering women is very important so we have decided that we will be celebrating Women’s Internal MONTH… that is right celebrating all the wonderful women out there the WHOLE MONTH!

My great friend Celeste Lévis is our special inspiring women for the month of March. For those of you who don’t know her Celeste is a great singer from Timmins. She has our rising star and we are very proud of everything she has accomplished. We will be having a draw for a bottle of Celeste product as well as her CD make sure to checkout our Facebook page for more information on how to enter.

Wishing all my Bella’s the best. See you later! ❤️

new year

A New Year for Accomplishing New (And Existing!) Goals

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Happy new year, Bellas! I hope each and every one of you enjoyed a fabulous holiday and are feeling renewed and rejuvenated for the new year ahead of us! We trust that Santa was good to the Bellas this year as I’m positive all of us made the nice list!

First of all, I truly want to thank those of you who supported our open house days in the month of December, both at our spa on December 9th as well as those of you who took advantage of our online open house sale on the following Friday, December the 16th. I was truly overwhelmed by the amount of support shown to me throughout the community and we hope to have aided you during the hectic last-minute holiday shopping season!

For those of you who weren’t already aware, 2016 marked my first Christmas as a grandmother and this made for a very special occasion. From my family to yours, all of us would like to wish you a very happy and successful 2017!

My mother, along with her great granddaughter, wish you all a happy new year!

Once the calendar had officially marked the beginning of the new year, myself and a few good friends got together for a fantastic evening of food, drink, and laughs by the barrel! As stressful as the holidays may get at times, I am always extremely thankful and grateful for all of the amazing people I am blessed to have in my life, both on a personal as well as on a professional level. Here’s to great memories and to making many more new ones!

Want to ensure you have a great year? Keep great company!

If there’s any downside to the Christmas holidays, it’s the fact that once the time off concludes, we have a tendency to put a ton of pressure upon ourselves to stick to our resolutions. We must always keep a positive frame of mind and set realistic expectations of ourselves so we aren’t sabotaging our attempts to hit our targets before we’ve even gotten started!

I read an interesting article recently that spoke to the reasons behind why we often fail when it comes to our ‘to-do’ lists. According to IdoneThis, a company which sells progress-tracking software, 41% of to-do items are never completed.

Here’s a huge reason why: people often fill their to-do list with far too many items. This can lead to anxiety and worry that doesn’t end up resulting in a whole lot of accomplishment. Also, a big problem is that we are often giving ourselves way too much time to complete our goals. Too much time to finish something? The more likely we’ll continue to put it off.

One of the most enlightening items from the article (at least for me) came with a simple perspective-challenging sentence: “Only 15 per cent of the things that people accomplish start as planned to-do items. That means most of what is accomplished – 85 per cent – is never even on the list.”

Wow. Think of that figure the next time you tell yourself you aren’t worthy of a bit of credit. Because we are constantly facing new events, new interruptions, and new challenges – oftentimes, things that can pop up out of nowhere which become immediate priorities – so much of what we are accomplishing never made it to our list in the first place.

As the article suggests, when creating your to-do list, write out the next step you’ll need to take to get you closer towards your goal. This makes your endgame a lot more attainable as you now have an action in place for your next step rather than looking solely at the ultimate final outcome.

On a similar note, I’d like you to take the five minutes required to watch this video entitled, “Take Responsibility for Your Life”:

Beyond the incredibly inspiring clip above, the folks at Fearless have a few fantastic recommendations on how to find the motivation to change your life and create a new YOU for the new year!

REMOVE OBSTACLES

Such as:

  • Fear of change
  • Not wanting to be uncomfortable
  • Boredom
  • Fear of insecurity
  • Feeling worn-out
  • Fear of failure
  • Lack of time
  • Too busy
  • Fear of not being good enough
  • Impatience
  • Perfectionism
  • Feeling overwhelmed

None of these are insurmountable!

TAKE SMALL STEPS

  • If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the huge change ahead, take one small step at a time instead. What one small action can you take TODAY that will help you to move forward NOW?

HIRE AN ACCOUNTANT

  • Not a financial accountant but a trusted individual who can hold you accountable for your actions!

And finally…

EMBRACE THE DESIRE YOU HAVE!

There is simply no good reason why 2017 can’t be the best year yet for all of us! One of my main goals for 2017 is to continue helping to keep your skin, body, and mind healthy while providing the occasional motivational boost along the way!

With last year’s launch of our new website and online shop, it’s only right that I do my best to give back as much as possible in thanks of your continued support.

Have a great year, Bellas!

 

Please Donate to Local Families in Need this Christmas!

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Hello again, my wonderful Bellas!

Thank you to everyone who showed up to our spa for our customer appreciation open house event!

As many of you know, I am often collaborating with the Timmins & Area Women in Crisis Centre in order to try and assist local families in need within our community and this year is no different! I’d like to thank EVERYONE who was kind enough to bring along their donations in support of this incredibly important cause!

local families in need

Some of the donations we’ve collected so far!

However, we still have a long way to go! Now that we’re getting closer to the actual Christmas date, we can accept perishable donations on top of the non-perishable and clothing / household items we had previously been requesting!

Call us at any time at (705) 267 2150 or visit us at 319 Patricia Blvd., Unit B (upstairs) to drop your items off in person!

Thank you so much for your continued kindness and generosity, Bellas! It is always so heartwarming to see how many of us are willing to help out our local families in need who need it the most!

For a complete list of the items we are requesting and who they will be for, please see below.

 

 

FEMALE:
  • 17 years old
SIZES:
  • Pants – Large; Shirts – X-Large; Shoes – Women’s 9; Outerwear – Men’s Medium
NEEDS:
  • Pyjamas, Socks, Sweatpants, Underwear, Body Wash, Shampoo, Slippers, Bed in a Bag (Twin)
INTERESTS:
  • Pencil Crayons, Sketch Pads, Body Spray (Vanilla), Stuffed Animals, Books, Favourite Colour is PURPLE, Likes the TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
MALE:
  • 16 years old
SIZES:
  • Pants – Men’s Medium; Shirts – Men’s Large; Shoes – Men’s 11; Outerwear – Men’s Large
NEEDS:
  • Pyjamas, Socks, Underwear/Boxers, Sweatpants, Axe / Men’s Hygiene Products, Slippers, Bed in a Bag (Twin)
INTERESTS:
  • Hockey Posters, Writing Journal, Favourite Colours are BLACK, GREY, and CHARCOAL GREY, Likes the PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
FEMALE:
  • 13 years old
SIZES:
  • Pants – Women’s Medium; Shirts – Women’s Medium; Shoes – Women’s 9; Outerwear – Women’s Medium
NEEDS:
  • Pyjamas, Socks, Slippers, Underwear, Hair Accessories (Brush, Elastics, Bobby Pins, etc.), Bed in a Bag (Twin)
INTERESTS:
  • Makeup, Perfume (Vanilla, Cotton Candy), Reading (Chicken Soup for the Soul), Journalling, Movies, Favourite Colours are PURPLE, PINK, and GREY, Likes the MONTREAL CANADIENS
MALE:
  • 12 years old
SIZES:
  • Pants – Men’s Small; Shirts – Men’s Small; Shoes – Men’s 8; Outerwear – Men’s Small
NEEDS:
  • Boxers (Small), Pyjamas, Slippers, Journal, Sketch Pads, Bed in a Bag
INTERESTS:
  • Hockey Stick (Left-Handed), Hockey Tape, Size 7 Ice Skates, PS3 Gift Card, Likes the PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (Fan of Posters, Collectibles, etc.)
MOTHER:
  • 40 years old
SIZES:
  • Pants – 3X; Shirts – 3X; Shoes – Women’s 9; Outerwear – 3X
NEEDS:
  • Pots and Pans, Dish Towels / Cloths, Towels, Slippers, Double Sheets, Socks, XL Underwear
INTERESTS:
  • Coles: Books (Self-Help / Positive) and Gift Cards, Pyjamas (Women’s XL), Makeup, Shoppers Drug Mart Gift Card, 8×10 Picture Frames, Butterfly Themed Belongings

We will be making our deliveries on December 23rd so please feel free to bring your donations into our spa all the way up until but no later than December 22nd.

thanksgiving

A Very Happy Thanksgiving to All!

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Hello again, Bellas! I hope everyone enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend and was able to spend some time with their closest friends and family! We are so blessed to enter into a new season of change by marking it with a special family holiday where we reflect upon all of the things that we have to be thankful for.

This year, we took the opportunity to give back to some of the less fortunate members within our community and I want to start by saying that NONE of this would have been possible without the support and generosity of my Bellas. Thanks to your help, we were able to provide a bounty of food and groceries to two terrific families in need as well as the Timmins & Area Women in Crisis! TAWC is an organization that I have been working alongside for some time now and I can’t thank you all enough for your exceptional acts of kindness! I am so proud of all of my clients for contributing to this endeavour and you will forever have my gratitude!

Have a look at these pics of my daughter, Lia, and I as we get set to make our way through our list of deliveries!

thanksgiving

The vehicle all loaded up and ready to go!

Look at all that food! Great job, Bellas! ?

thanksgiving

Lia and I couldn’t have found a better way to spend our Thanksgiving weekend!

We wanted to enter the season on a positive note and we truly thank you for your assistance in helping us to accomplish our goal! To maintain the positivity, we’d like to bring your attention back to our amazing and user-friendly website consultation tools! They’re free, easy to use, and will help you to match the best products available for tackling your problem areas! As we prepare for the Autumn and the accompanying dipping temperatures, it is important to remember that our skin will require extra nourishment and hydration in order to combat and protect against the harshening elements.

For those of you who are unaware, the goal of the Bella Esthetics & Spa site isn’t to simply generate a large volume of cold sales, we are most interested in supplying you with the products and regimens that best compliment your own personal lifestyle. In order to accomplish this, we’ve made three complimentary tools available to our website visitors that provide an immense amount of value – each of them coming free of charge!

See my video below for a more detailed explanation!

The first option is to use our online consultation form. Once you fill out all of the appropriate fields and attach a headshot of yourself (sans-makeup), I (Lynne) will follow up with you directly to discuss the products that best match your skin type. This is a one-on-one online consultation and all information is kept secure and confidential and will only be seen by me.

For the more experienced client, the option to consult with the Dr. Renaud Product Table is always available. Please be aware of the tabs across the top as the table defaults to its general skin care section.

Finally, and perhaps the most fun to use, is the option to use our interactive face tool. This face functions through a simple point and click where the user clicks upon their problem area, enters some information pertaining to their skin type, and the appropriate product is served up immediately. We worked hard to get this tool up and running and would love to hear some feedback on it from our users. Have you tried it? Did it provide you with an enjoyable experience? Is there anything you feel we can do to increase its effectiveness? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Another big component of the Bella philosophy is to strive to consistently educate our audience so that they can lead altogether better lives! We want to share important information that bolsters the confidence of our Bellas and has them feeling more in control of their physical and mental well-being!

A recent internet debate propped up as to whether or not its necessary to clean your legs in the shower…yes, we couldn’t believe it ourselves! Ha ha! However, we aren’t laughing in order to shame people, it is just always surprising to discover how different people are from one another when it comes to their hygiene and care routines. Put simply, it comes down to a matter of proper education and information sharing.

It may surprise you to learn how many adults fail to clean in and behind their ears when cleaning their face! Did you know that it’s better (and safer) to clean the inside of your ears with a washcloth rather than a Q-tip? I have always felt that putting a little added care into your daily face cleansing regimen can keep your skin looking healthier and younger with just a few extra minutes!

Please take a look at the tutorial I put together in relation to the proper cleansing of your skin!

As I’ve already mentioned, Thanksgiving marks our entrance into a new season and doubles as the last major holiday prior to Christmas! So, as it can be a very tumultuous time, we want to do our best to ensure our Bellas are making a healthy and graceful transition!

This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for family, great friends, and my amazing Bellas, all of whom provide me with more motivation and inspiration than you could ever hope to realize! All of you provide the fuel I need to keep my engine going and every comment, like, or piece of feedback I receive from you means the world to me.

I sincerely look forward to continuing to build upon our already beautiful relationship and hope you enjoy a fantastic week as we navigate through this fabulous October weather!

lynnesignature

relievedfaceemoji

 

no-bake energy bites

Healthy Recipe for No-Bake Energy Bites!

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no-bake energy bites

Hello again, my Bellas! I hope everyone is enjoying a fantastic week as we experience the beginnings of Autumn!

With it also being back to school season, September is typically a month of great change for many families and we hope everyone is dealing with this transitional phase as best as possible!

Of course, as is always the case with us, we want to inspire and motivate people to become their best selves and a big part of that has to do with our diet and what we put into our bodies.

I was recently discussing this exact topic with my good friend and client, Lisa Ladouceur, and she mentioned to me one of her favourite treats to make at home, her no-bake energy bites!

The no-bake energy bites make for a quick and easy snack that your kids will love – they’ll also be thrilled to help you MAKE them as Lisa’s little ones can attest to! Check out Tyra and Rocco in action!

no-bake energy bites

Lisa’s little helpers in action!

Now, don’t get me wrong. Kids ADORE the no-bake energy bites but so will you! In fact, these things can be extremely addictive so be sure to keep a close eye on them once they’re made! On the other hand, you can feel good in knowing that reaching for a few of these is a much better option than that bag of chips you’d normally go to.

Not only are these snacks incredibly good for you in terms of their nutritious value, but to say they’re simple to make would be a terrible understatement. One of the best things about this treat is that they’re next to impossible to mess up! You can whip these up in no time without having to even turn on your oven! The ingredients are also quite inexpensive!

no-bake energy bites

INGREDIENTS:

‌• 1 cup (dry) oatmeal
‌• ⅓ cup coconut flakes
‌• ½ cup peanut butter
• ⅓ cup ground flaxseed
• ⅓ cup hemp seed
• ½ cup chocolate chips
‌• ⅓ cup agave
‌• 1 tbsp. chia seed
‌• 1 tsp. vanilla extract
‌• Add pumpkin / sunflower seeds for CRUNCH!

Preparation is just as simple and as easy as 1-2-3! As we mentioned earlier (and as it says in the name of the snack itself!), your oven will not be required! You’ll be eating these amazing treats in no time at all and all your friends will be inquiring about your confectionery skills – assuming they’re able to get a bite in on time!

no-bake energy bites

DIRECTIONS:

‌• Mix all ingredients together and let sit in the fridge for approximately a ½ hour
• Roll into small balls about 1 inch wide
• Store in refrigerator inside of an air-tight container
• ENJOY!!!

One of the best things about these is that they are multi-purpose! You can enjoy them for a fast and easy breakfast, as a quick snack for when you’re on-the-go, as a protein boost prior to jumping into your workout routine, or even as a tasty dessert to cleanse your palette after a fine meal!

I mean, who wouldn’t love these things!?

no-bake energy bites

Tyra and Rocco showing off their finished product!

Bellas, I would really love it if you tried out the no-bake energy bites recipes for yourselves to let us know what you think! Do you have any of your own healthy recipes to share with us? We’d love to hear about them!

Have a fantastic end to your week!lynnesignaturerelievedfaceemoji

 

bella's sunshine drink

Bella’s Sunshine Drink

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The way you choose to start your morning is crucial to setting the tone for the rest of your day. Eating a healthy and balanced breakfast, especially within the first hour of your day is extremely important, but what about what you put into your body before breakfast?

There is a so much information on the internet these days, especially in regards to the holistic phenomenon that has become so popular. More and more people are choosing at-home, organic remedies over modern-day medication. Many of us are going back to the traditional ways of taking care of our bodies and minds. Mother Nature has always provided us with everything we need to live a healthy and balanced life, and although we agree that modern medicine plays a crucial role in our society, there are many ways that adopting a healthy and holistic lifestyle can change your life.

We know it can be daunting to change your habits and routine, but we promise that if you add this drink to your morning ritual, you will love the results. Drink this first thing in the morning, Lynne swears by it:

  • Hot water
  • 1 full *organic lemon
  • Dash of *organic cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of *organic raw honey
  • 1 small piece of fresh ginger

*Choose organic ingredients from your local farmers market if possible, but if you don’t have access to these, non-organic is ok too. If you are finding the taste to be strong, after you take a sip, add some more hot water and continue doing so after each sip to taste. One of the largest benefits of this drink comes from the mixing of the ingredients with the hot water so be sure to keep your glass nice and toasty!

bella's sunshine drink

The ingredients…

bella's sunshine drink

The mix…

The result! ?

The result! ?

Lynne was introduced to this concoction by her mother, and since the age of 16, has been drinking it every morning. The benefits of drinking hot water and lemon is all over the internet, in part because it is raved about by experts such as Dr. Oz and also because people are more and more interested in adopting an all-natural lifestyle. So in a way, Lynne was ahead of her time and has been reaping its benefits for many years.

Here are just a few reasons why you should add this drink to your morning routine:

  • Packed with vitamin C
  • Will give you glowing skin
  • Aids in weight loss
  • Controls blood sugar levels, thus fighting sugar cravings   
  • Cleanses your body of toxins
  • Antioxidant
  • Boosts your metabolism
  • Helps reduce inflammation

Try it out! Stick to it even just for a week and you’ll see why we love it so much! Trust us, you won’t regret it!

– Contributed by Cynthia Gamache

back to school

Getting Yourself Right for Back to School!

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back to school

With summer coming to a close, it’s time to turn our minds towards a new season and a new chapter! Whether you’re headed back to school or you’re simply setting fresh goals for yourself to coincide with Autumn’s arrival, now is the time for self-reflection and positive renewals!

As we prepare to face a new season of challenges and obstacles, it is important to reaffirm to ourselves that we CAN overcome whatever stands in our way!

I can’t help but be inspired by the incredible Penny Oleksiak, the 16-year-old Canadian who picked up two bronze medals, a silver, a gold, AND an Olympic record at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio!

The gold medal race where she shared the podium and the Olympic record with American swimmer, Simone Manuel, still takes my breath away! What a moment for our country!

The thing I find most inspiring about this young lady has to do with the fact that she left for Brazil with a few goals in mind and by the time she left, she had either met or exceeded her own expectations!

This is something we ALL have the power to do for ourselves and it is truly a matter of nourishing ourselves with the proper diet, regimen, and ATTITUDE on a consistent basis!

Oleksiak certainly appears to have done all three and will be heading back to school as a proud Olympic champion!

Speaking of back to school, we realize that returning to class can act as a source of anxiety for both teens and young adults alike. With a long road ahead that is sure to be filled with assignments, projects, and exams, it is critical that we also properly manage our stress levels throughout each day, month, and semester.

It has been demonstrated that our stress levels can significantly impact our physical and mental well-being. Negative stress levels are often associated with illness so it is important that we do our best to lessen the emotional toll that stress can heap upon our mind and body.

To decrease our stress levels, we need to balance our routines so that we are focusing upon ourselves as much as we focus upon our outward responsibilities. If you’re not right in your own mind, how can you expect to positively affect others and/or produce your best work?

When I think of the Fall, I get a little sad about what we’ll be leaving behind but I also get extremely excited for all of the new treasures that are about to come our way.

I get sorrowful about leaving the sun behind and having to close up the camp. However, everything is easier when you do it with friends!

Whenever we close up camp, we bring the pups along with us to make the most of the experience! The dogs love it up there and are always happy to help with whatever we need them for! See for yourself how happy these little guys are!

back to school

Just look at these two!!!

Having the dogs around always adds a little bounce to my step! Did you know it has been proven that pets can improve health and cognitive function? They can also help to decrease stress levels and bring about a heightened sense of calm. But did you know that the same goes for the people who stand within your circle? You are the company that you keep so make sure the ones you are spending the majority of your time with are propping you up rather than pulling you down!

As we mentioned earlier, diet is also a key component for staying physically and mentally fit! It is important that we are eating the best foods available to keep our heads clear and our energy levels raised! Before we left the cottage, my mother and I made sure to have one final healthy meal! Eating healthy all the time adds more pep to your step! We had lamb with our dish but you can easily swap it out for chicken, fish, or even tofu for the vegetarian and vegans! And just have a look at that gorgeous Chinese salad! Mmm mmm good!

back to school

Jackie with another homemade gourmet dish!

When I refer to the abundance of treasures that come Autumn’s arrival, I am definitely speaking (in part) about the coming harvest season!

There is absolutely no comparison to homegrown organic vegetables. My father is amazing and can surely grow just about anything!

Here’s a great photo of Dad tending to some fresh potatoes:

back to school

Or even better, how about this capture of Dad picking out some fresh zucchini from his garden?

back to school

I know you’re all asking the question, so I’ll happily provide the answer: YES, I DO STEAL AS MANY VEGGIES AS POSSIBLE WHENEVER I STOP BY FOR A VISIT! ?

In fact, we made some delicious gluten-free muffins with this very zucchini! Take a look at how these beauties were looking just as we pulled them from the oven. My mouth is watering just thinking about how good these were!

back to school

As delectable as the muffins look in this picture, the camera still doesn’t do them justice. In fact, because these make for a tasty and healthy treat, I have to share the recipe with you so you can try it out for yourself! If any of you do attempt to make the muffins for yourself, I’d love to hear how they turned out! Please send us a picture to share your results with us!

GLUTEN-FREE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI MUFFINS

  • 1 cup rice flour and 1 cup of crushed/grated flax seed (both are gluten-free)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum (don’t add gum if using a gluten-free flour mix that contains xanthan gum or guar gum)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
    • Optional: Substitute 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce for sugar, if desired
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup low fat sour cream (for dairy free version substitute applesauce or tofu for sour cream)
  • 3 cups shredded unpeeled zucchini
  • 3/4 cup gluten-free semi-sweet chocolate chips
    • Optional: Add 1/2 cup of crushed/grated walnuts (or another favourite nut of yours)

PREPARATION

  • Preheat oven to 350° F / 176° C
  • Spray two 12-cup muffin tins with coconut oil
  • Place rice flour, crushed/grated flax seed, xanthan gum, salt, baking soda, and cocoa powder into a medium bowl (use a wire whisk to mix and combine)
  • In a large bowl, place oil, sugars, eggs, and vanilla, and mix with an electric hand mixer until fluffy
  • Stir in sour cream (or your dairy-free substitute) with shredded zucchini
  • Stir flour mixture into batter until just combined
  • Fold the chocolate chips into the mixture (add with crushed/grated walnuts or other nuts, if desired)
  • Add batter to muffin tins and bake for 25-30 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of the muffin comes out clean)
  • Allow to cool on wire rack for 10 minutes before turning out
  • Yields between 18-24 muffins!
  • Can also be used for cakes/loaves – if baking a loaf, bake for 50 minutes

Try those out and tell me you haven’t been taken to a whole new world of flavour!!! I sure wish I had a fresh batch sitting next to me right now! What healthy foods and/or treats have you made a staple of your diet? I am always looking for new recipes to try out!

Of course, diet and mental health are not the only parts of our regimen that require extra discipline and attention. We also need to take care of our bodies, specifically, our skin! The changing elements can wreak havoc upon our skin and we need to ensure that we are taking steps to prevent harm!

Also, with it being back to school season, many teens and young adults are beginning to struggle with skin conditions such as acne. While many are predisposed to acne due to their genetic history, often times, acne arises due to hormonal changes and this can lead to stress, embarrassment, and a diminished sense of self-confidence.

It is tragic to think that anyone would be battling internal strife due to an unhappiness with their own appearance. However, due to the fact that our bodies are undergoing major transformations throughout our teenage years, it is understandable that younger individuals may struggle to cope with the seemingly never ending change.

This is a big part of the reason why we are proud to offer the all-new Clear Up Teen back to school promotional package from Laboratoire Dr Renaud!

back to school

Purchase the Clear Up Teen package and receive your choice of one (1) of five (5) products as a FREE GIFT!

This incredible value-package from Dr Renaud includes the following:

  1. Clear Up Cleansing Gel
  2. Clear Up Anti-Blemish Control Solution
  3. Clear Up Anti-Shine Moisturizer

With the purchase of the package, you can take one of the following as your free gift!

  1. SeboBalance 24H Anti-Ageing Fluid
  2. UV-Science SPF 30 – Rich Emulsion
  3. Loose Powder SPF 50 Broad Spectrum • Dark
  4. Loose Powder SPF 50 Broad Spectrum • Light
  5. Anti-Ageing Sunscreen Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 20

Now is the time to stock up and save! With the Clear Up Teen package, you can feel safe in knowing that you’ll be headed back to school with a superior skin regimen that will keep your skin looking healthy and vibrant throughout your semester!

By the way, you don’t need to be a student to take advantage of this incredible deal! These products will work across all age groups so if you’re a parent, you may want to consider picking up one of these packs for yourself! The value is unparalleled!

We know we can accomplish just about anything when we put our minds to it! So let’s ensure that we’re adding the right tools to our arsenal to ensure we achieve optimal success! Once we’ve properly equipped ourselves for all the challenges that are about to come our way, we should strive to set three personal goals each day that we hope to accomplish. It doesn’t matter if they’re big goals or small ones – when you set a goal for yourself and you cross it off your list, you can FEEL that you’ve really achieved something. It’s a great practice to work into your daily routine!

So, before we go, please let us know what your primary goal is this Fall – do you have plans to head back to school? Are you closing up your camp? Do you plan to work on improving your diet?

Please let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you and we’re wishing you the best of luck! We believe in you, Bellas!

back to school

 

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Last Days of Summer!

500 204 Bella Esthetics & Spa

last days of summer

Hey again, everyone! The last days of summer are certainly approaching fast! We have even experienced some pretty chilly days over the past week or so. What is going on!?!

Look, the worst thing you can do is begin to fret! These type of unpleasant realizations only serve to remind us that we have to make the most of the days we have left!

We’d love to hear what you’ve been up to this summer! Let us know in the comments below so we can trade stories! Perhaps, you had a particularly amazing experience that you’d like to share and recommend to us! We know our Bellas are out there doing all sorts of incredible things so please let us know what you’ve been up to!

? LAST DAYS OF SUMMER ?

After last month’s post about our own favourite summer memories, we received some great feedback in the comments and it was a sincere pleasure to hear from some of you!

At the time, it sounded as if many of you were interested in our Ritz® crackers s’mores as well as some of our summer bevy creations!

In regards to the former, we were out at our own camp recently in order to enjoy the warmth while we still can! While we were there, we had a bonfire of our own and – yep, you guessed it! – we broke out the tried and true Del Guidice s’mores tradition!

Of course, we had to document the experience for each of the Bellas out there who have personally expressed that they plan on trying this little hack out for themselves!

  • STEP 1⃣️

last days of summer

Find the best stick you can from the bush! This step is key! ?

You will need to find a stick that’s long enough to keep you safe from the crackling fire but one that’s not soooo long that it ends up flimsily dipping into the flames and / or onto the burning logs!

Bonus points if you’re able to shave the end of your stick down to a point! This will help to ensure that you aren’t eating any bark once you pull the marshmallows out of the pit and will also make life easier when attempting to keep the marshmallows intact as you pull them off of the end of the stick!

For all the little Bellas out there: you may need from Mom and Dad (or even Grandma and Grandpa) for this one! Always stay safe and act responsibly!

In the above image, we’ve actually used a metal prong to toast our marshmallows but if we were deep in the bush and camped inside of a tent, the random tree branch is your best bet and literally all you’ll need!

IMPORTANT – the coals in the fire must be?  RED ?  HOT ?, and visibly so, before you begin to initiate the toasting process!

  • STEP 2⃣️

last days of summer

The marshmallows are to be toasted until they are coated within a beautiful looking golden-brown shell. I think most of us have experienced what it’s like to eat a burnt marshmallow and I think you’ll agree that it is not pleasant! If there’s one thing that can spoil a good marshmallow, it’s definitely a thick coating of ash!!!

To achieve the perfect roasted marshmallow over an open fire, your stick needs to be turned slowly and gradually, almost like a rotisserie chicken!

When the marshmallows look the way they do in the image above, you know you’re only a few seconds away from perfection!

Trust me when I say that it’s a process so make sure not to rush the job or turn your stick too fast or too slowly. Like we said in our previous post, we have to get them toasted so they’re juuuuuuuussst riiiiiiiiiggghhht, Goldilocks style!

  • STEP 3⃣️

last days of summer

Now that we’ve achieved the perfect marshmallow, it’s time to create the sandwiches!

Graham crackers? What graham crackers!? No need for those here!

Not when we’ve got the secret ingredients, aka the box of Ritz® crackers!!!

Again, I have to stress the importance of placing the marshmallow on top of the salted side of the cracker. Having the salt blend into the gooey marshmallow is a true delight! The flavour contrast is outstanding and your tastebuds will jump around for joy! Of course, you can sandwich the marshmallow so that the salt and sugar are blending on each end, however, feel free to leave one of the crackers salt side up if you as it will provide you with a satisfying aftertaste that lingers for quite some time!

As you can see, I’ve added a touch of chocolate spread for some extra decadence – mmm! And trust me when I say that a dab of peanut butter added to these treats has the potential to blow your mind!!!

  • STEP 4⃣️

last days of summer

WOLF? THOSE⬆️ PUPPIES ? DOWN⬇️ !!! ?

I’ve had quite a few people remark on how delectable these creations appear to them. But they truly have to be tasted to be believed!

Please try this for yourself and let me know how much you loved them!

The S’mores Queen awaits your thoughts!

last days of summer

? WALKS TO THE MOVIES ?

In today’s age of the internet, Netflix, and the like, I’m not sure how many children today consider a trip to the theatre to be as magical an experience as we used to consider it to be!

As a little girl, I still remember how excited we would get about a trip to the movies, oftentimes to the point where we’d be walking down to the theatre in our PJ’s!

In those days, movies that played during the summer would always be prefaced by a few public service announcements courtesy of our old pal, Smokey the Bear!

last days of summer

Don’t mess with this guy!

Just the mere mention of Smokey always causes the nostalgia to come flooding back.

We’d heed his fire safety warnings and commit his instructions to memory prior to the movie kicking off!

How many of you remember these old things?

??? ONLY YOU CAN PREVENT FOREST FIRES! ?♨️?

? CANOES & KAYAKS ?

Of course, no summer is complete without some time out on the water!

We used to spend a countless number of hours gliding across the lake, pretending we were pirates looking for underwater booty or even a group of old-time explorers in search of food and building materials!

The way the sun would sparkle off of the lake would always bring a smile to our faces. It truly felt like the world was ours! Having said that, it would have been great if we had the same amount of knowledge back then as we do now in regards to the hazards of ultraviolet rays!

The water has a tendency to amplify the intensity of the sun as it can reflect the UV and infrared rays and lead to a more severe and concentrated burn.

Thankfully, we have products like the incredible suncare line by Laboratoire Dr Renaud that can protect us against harmful UV and infrared rays without sacrificing our tan! That’s right! Get that golden-brown skin you’ve always desired without having to worry about painful burns!

Click NOW and SAVE!

Click the image above NOW and SAVE!

Added bonus: the Laboratoire Dr Renaud suncare line will also keep your skin healthy looking and vibrant in appearance thanks to its anti-wrinkle properties!

It’s also sweat and sand resistant so you know what that means – enjoy the beach like never before and experience maximum comfort!

These days, I tend to enjoy a calming kayak trek alongside some of my closest friends and family members. It’s a great way to spend the day and there are always some great memories to trade back and forth while we’re floating above the fishies!

Also, thanks to Laboratoire Dr Renaud, we’re happier and healthier on the open water than we’ve ever been before!

Here’s one of my most recent pieces of evidence:

last days of summer

Speaking of being out on the lake, there’s so much joy to be had just by really integrating yourself with nature. While Northerners are definitely known to take full advantage of our natural surroundings, sometimes, it’s possible that we may be taking all the beauty around us for granted. This is why my family and I are always striving to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Not only is it a great way to spend your day but there are several proven and scientific health benefits that arise from simply spending a bit of each day outside.

I’ve been lucky to have such an amazing summer up to this point – having so many opportunities to spend quality time with my favourite people within a low-stress environment is my idea of a dream life! But have you ever gotten that feeling before where it almost seems as if the Earth is closing up around you, almost to ensure that you’re having the best day you possibly can?

? FISHING ?

How many of my readers are avid fishermen/fisherwomen? I can tell you that fishing is one of the favourite past times of my parents, as well as my own! Mom and Dad instilled in me a passion for fishing as a child and it has yet to leave me! In fact, my folks still have the fishing bug themselves as my father and step-mother recently joined me for our last fishing expedition of the season together!

I have to thank my folks for demonstrating the value of nature to me from such a young age.

As you can see, things haven’t changed a whole lot…

last days of summer

Last summer weekend with Step-mom and Dad!

When I mentioned the feeling that the Earth is enclosing on you as it provides a wealth of little gifts for you to enjoy, I was specifically referring to a moment I shared together with my father and step-mother on the calm waters as we floated among a family of loons.

These little cuties stayed right next to our boat for the majority of our fishing expedition. We figured we must have been tipping them off to all the good spots!

last days of summer

It’s always a delight having a chance to make new friends!

The loons joined us for the majority of the evening, even as dusk approached!

Speaking of dusk, how’s this for a picture-perfect capture?

last days of summer

This photo was captured on the Mattagami Lake, just a touch away from the Minakwa Lodge in Gogama!

Absolutely stunning!

? FAMILY ?‍?‍?‍?

It’s all about the quality time.

Some of you may know that I recently became a grandmother and I can definitely say that it was (and is) one of the proudest moments of my life.

My daughter, Lia, and I decided that we’d keep our tradition going strong by introducing my granddaughter, Camille, to nature as soon as possible!

Here’s a recent candid shot of the three of us out for an afternoon stroll together!

last days of summer

Lynne, Lia & Camille!

We know that we’ve been making the most of our last days of summer – but have you???

What is motivating you right now? What goals do you plan to accomplish before the summer officially comes to a close? Do you have plans to squeeze anything in before the kids are back to school in a month? Please let us know in the comments below…

HOW DO YOU PLAN TO SPEND YOUR LAST DAYS OF SUMMER?

Have a great week!

    relievedfaceemojilynnesignature

 

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