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Tobruck Ave by Kiara Schwartz - 2w ago

Coming out of my beauty closet and sharing my almost clean beauty shelf. A year ago I wouldn’t have even thought to have this conscious of a collection. With this routine I feel confident in what I put on my skin and that in turn makes me incredibly happy and excited to share my journey with you.
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Shop my beauty shelf above.

I am no where near being fully clean when it comes to living a conscious and eco lifestyle. But I think it is important that I share the steps in between as well. Will I ever be 100 percent eco, I dont know, because if you asked me a year ago I would have said even being where I am today in terms of being more conscious and aware when it comes to consumption is impossible. Especially because of what I do. But look at me now, I have re-discovered my obsession with Vintage clothing and I have stopped turning a blind eye on what I put on my skin, really what has happened is this process has given me boundaries to accepting jobs, products and content I want to communicate with you all.

Being actively conscious about beauty is a new world, once you start digging into what is in mainstream designer and drug store skin care, it is almost impossible to “unlearn” and not to think about while putting it on your skin. Goop has been an amazing source for me as I learn the ropes, brands and products that dont claim to be something they are not. I have substituted a lot of creams with oils, Biossance is one of my favorites. It is plant derived and contains squalane, vitamin c and rose oil, all beautiful ingredients that bring life to your skin. OK so I love Glossier, while they do not claim to be clean they DO NOT test on animals. A lot of my choices are also based upon how much I trust the company. I am in marketing so yes packaging and branding also catches my eye in a certain way.

The movement towards creating beautifully branded clean beauty is happening now and I am so excited to be part of communicating, testing and educating you guys on everything I learn. I use EVERY single product in this post. I rotate as some of them serve a similar purpose. I think keeping your skin on its toes is also important. One of my favorite rotations is the Glossier Solution and the Salicylic Acid Solution by The Ordinary, DCM. Another company that is completely transparant in its ingredients no alchohol, cruelty free, silicone free the list goes on and the best part about them is that ttheir product costs $9 a bottle and the Acid Solution has lasted me 6 months and is not even all the way done yet. Another must have is Goops exfoliating instant facial. It says to only use it a few times a week but I use it every night. It has changed the texture of my skin! I put it on post Solution and leave it on while I brush my teeth, it tingles a bit but as you wash it off with a warm face cloth the texture of your skin feels soft and bright, if that is in fact a feeling.

Hopefully this helps you sort through the crowed space of beauty that is out there. I am also currently in the process in testing a few natural deodorants for you so you do not have to face potential moments of realizing they dont work. Stay tuned.

The post The almost Clean Beauty shelf appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Tobruck Ave by Kiara Schwartz - 2w ago

Movement awakens my soul. Now I know not everyone has the luxury of hitting the gym whenever they wish, including myself. So I teamed up with a personal trainer to put together an at home work out, no equipment necessary, from one busy mom to the next.

On the last Blue moon Kiara and I pulled Moon cards. After I pulled my initial cards I had this feeling that I needed a “bonus” card and felt compelled to pull another. I felt in my heart there was a certain card that just wanted to be seen. Something for me, an overall life card and there it was, the MOVEMENT, staring me right in the face.  The instant I saw it I said aloud “this is my life card”.

When I move regularly I am a more grounded and level-headed human being.  Any form of motion makes me feel mentally and emotionally balanced. Movement is a release of tension and an opportunity to generate more energy and clarity. I did not always honor this need to move. When I was younger I danced and played on a few sports teams but let’s keep it real, there was a time when I ate twinkkies and coffee for breakfast and had the random smoke while out drinking the night away. I did not value my body the way I do now. I suppose I did not know its worth.

Becoming a mother to three gorgeous babies has changed my body, and so it should!  It housed 3 little miracles that I am beyond grateful for and I am constantly amazed by what the female body can do.  There are certain things that will never be the same and I’m totally ok with that.  Becoming a mother has changed my perspective on life, in all areas.  My family relies on my health, energy, and love. They are the driving force that pushes me to be a better me. Parenting is hard and sometimes getting out and going to a crazy-ass hard workout can feel like a vacation, but thats the beauty of it all.  Without them I would never have learned that I can do hard things, and while doing the hard things you learn to see great joy. 

Moving should be like a celebration for what we are able to achieve and what your body is able to do. It should feel like a blessing, not a punishment for what you ate and drank last weekend.  I’ve been training at a gym that incorporates everything from strength training, power and agility work, mixed aerobic intervals and circuits that include rowing, cycling, boxing and running. These workouts kick my ass every time but I love it. I’ve realized I need to be pushed hard to truly feel the benefits. I do it to train my brain to breakthrough life challenges and uncomfortable situations knowing the end result is so worth it!

I don’t go to these workouts every day but i do try to move every day so I can focus my brain on something other than the daily reality.  An easy way for me as a mom to factor in a work out is to get playful with the kids and go to the park, play tag, hide and seek, soccer in the backyard ect. Become a kid again it feels so good and your little ones will love it too. Not to mention if you run them hard enough you may hit the jackpot with an earlier bedtime, this is usually my motive. 

You don’t have to make it to the gym or a have a trainer to move and feel the amazing results, you just have to have the desire.

It has always been the THOUGHT  that I will mentally FEEL better after a work-out that gets me there, not the idea of a great body.  Yes, we all dream about nice flat abs, toned arms, and the perfect tight toosh, but the way I see it when we push our selves and set goals we are strengthening our mindset, and this my friend is the golden ticket. Your mindset will prove to you that you are beautiful and capable of achieving anything you wish. 

I know first hand getting out and making it to a work out is not always an option, so if you’re up to get your sweat on at home, Eric Smith, a personal trainer and kinesiologist from MVMT academy in North Vancouver has put together a full body workout that you can do anywhere with no equipment needed.  See below. If you are unsure of the exercise, just ask google. This is how I get my sweat on at home when there is no space in my day to get to the gym.

Work out at home and reap the mind body and soul benefit no equipment necessary:

Warmup 3x (5-10mins)

Wild things/Rock Stars 5/5

Air Squat 10

T Push Up 5/5

Lunge W/ QL stretch/twist 5/5

Squat thrusts 10

Get your move on 10-12mins continuous (rest 15s between and 30-45s after round)

30 Alternating plyo step up (can do on stairs/chair/couch etc) (other option is toe tap for less stable surface)

20 Split Squat chops (lower into split squat with chosen “weight” at hip of back leg, stand up and raise “weight” to above opposite shoulder (cross body)) could use any household item as weight.

10 Spider-Man Push up/push up jackknife or a regular push up for beginners

5 Burpees OR 10 tuck jumps

Feel that heart rate 20s on 10s off. 3-4rounds

Air Squats

MTN climbers

Lateral Bounds/lunges (space dependent)

FWBW Bear crawl (2-4 steps forward 2-4steps back repeat)

If that wasn’t enough. Do 1-3 sets of

10/10 Single leg glute bridge (foot on chair or couch is option for more glute activation.)

10/10 Star Sit ups (reach to opposite foot.)

20 Flutter Kicks

20 scissors

The post Movement awakens my soul appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Happy Earth day lovers. Maybe we can all make an impact today by doing just one thing that will contribute to a bit of a sustainability movement. I have been doing my best be conscious about what I am wearing lately, this Tee is ethically made in Canada thats a good start.
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Tee by Tamar Kate, Sneakers by Allbirds, Jeans by Paige, Coat by Herschel, Hat by lack of Color, Necklace by Lisbeth Jewelry

Photography by Allison Kuhl

It is Earth Day today. This is the first year this means something so much bigger to me. I thought becoming more connected and conscious with myself would be limited to me on a soul search to a deeper connection with my own being, little did I know it spills over into everything I do, eat and wear. Because it is all connected to the way I feel. Being good to the planet is part of being more conscious and aware of our impact on it on a daily basis. This does not mean that you need to go to living a zero waste lifestyle in one day. That would be the ultimate goal but it is not low hanging fruit for todays modern lifestyle, at least not for me. But lets start somewhere.

There are easier ways to begin to feel like you are making a difference, and that can start by simply using a reusable bottle rather then plastic water bottles that end up floating in the ocean. The simple act of this, will give you the tingles when you think that you as one person have made a difference in todays consumption. Its hard to just close the door to the thought of being a good earth citizen. So if this tickles your fancy, maybe also think twice about the tshirt you buy next the basic that you want to love does not need to come from Forever 21. This Tee  I am wearing is one that will be in my closet forever, a simple black basic that goes with every mood and every outfit. Tamar Kate is a local Vancouverite and all of her tees and dresses are made from a Organic Modal fabric in Canada. Besides it feeling and fitting perfectly the carbon footprint does not include a flight from China! Just that little detail makes me feel so excited to support and spread the word about her. I also own this tee in white and the dress in black as well.

Slow Fashion is the new you, trust me! I was chatting with my business coach not to long ago about this whole environmentally friendly fashion story and I told her I dont know if I can take this movement this far because of what I do, it would be impossible to go entirely earth friendly. Well she was right, as always it has “organically” (no pun intended) reached my closet and the truth is, there is no need to go cold turkey and throw out everything that is made in China. But just a few hints of Made in Canada and of course Vintage sprinkled throughout my closet is feeling really good. So I am celebrating this Tshirt on this very important day of earth. Every day can turn into earth day! Lets do it, what are you going to do today and maybe tomorrow to contribute to earth day?

The post Happy Earth day, lets start with an Environmentally conscious Tee appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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This body is a beautifully crafted vessel to contain the soul.

Mine was given to me with a deep capacity that I’m beginning to understand. It was given to me to with a privilege of health, athleticism and physical strength. It is a result of my ancestry’s journey, generations of immigrants and blood identity. It is the physical thing that contains a brain, that interprets my soul, who connects with my spirit. I’ve recently understood these parts of me, shifting my perspective to it being my body, my body not being “me”.

Most of my life, I’ve taken this physicality for granted. I’ve sat back, leaned back in it, my soul safely buckled in its back seat, letting it take me through the ride of life. My physical being lead the way, as my soul sat back and watched. Things would happen to me. My body has been tokenized, abused, used, shamed and claimed. Because of taking it for granted, I would carelessly take risks. I’ve thoughtlessly jumped off of 15 ft cliffs, have given it to men and talked shit about it. I’ve been othered and othered myself, blaming it and shamed it. I’ve spent years not acknowledging this body’s magic chosen by my soul. Life is a ride, but I never knew how to be the driver seat. Our souls choose a body to drive the journey, not to ride it.

There is a difference in showing up physically, and showing up physically + energetically.

Our job is to step forward. And by step forward I mean show up aligned, soul, spirit and body. This will not come from coasting through life in the back seat. It will come from doing the work to be present, energetically, because the body is obvious.

Moving the soul to the driver’s seat creates moments of being fully present.

I’m not here to tell you how, to get to this realization. There are enough “how to’s” and self help guides out there. I’m here to enlightened through my experience and remind you to face your shit, because life is dope when you do the work.

Face your shit, get real with your emotions, get real with your wants, and soul’s desires. It will take healing, compassion and rock bottom. But the work is worth it. It takes courage, facing your fears, and shedding a lot of your ego.

Pro tip, work on embodying this concept: Your body is not you. It is a physical form that has been given to you to be fully expressed. Passion, creativity, expression, elation, LOVE, these are life’s truest gifts. Your body is your soul’s vehicle. Stop treating it like shit and shaming it. Respect it, love it and thank it for the capacity and letting you show up with it’s physical beauty. There’s not time to hate it. You have more important soul and spirit work to do. Get in the front seat, we’re looking for you.

Adriana is a mixed blooded, multicultural woman, exploring empowerment by well being. Her ongoing journey involves creative expression, being a student to intuition and managing an obsession with understanding the depth of how energy affects us. Follow her art @adricreative or expressive personal storytelling @adri.lovesyou

The post This body is a beautifully crafted vessel to contain the soul appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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I am truly excited to share this piece with you. Last Friday I decided to stay off social media because it was making me feel incredibly negative and I was spending to much time on it. My decision turned into a 5 day instagram detox with the intention of creating space to stop the negative momentum and refocus. Read on for what I learnt.

Photos by Brit Gill (I picked these because I had no idea she snapped this photo of me taking in the Cabo Sunset)

I never thought I would be writing a piece on any type of detox. Addiction is not in my wheelhouse, I have never had a problem with abusing or even using any mind-altering substances so the word detox never spoke to me. Not even a juice cleanse. 

Until now. 

On Good Friday there was a moment while scrolling on Instagram when I felt this huge momentum of negative thoughts toward every single thing I saw on there. One post in particular lead to this “detox” and it was a post celebrating something that was just not the truth and it was an easy catch and it frustrated my brain to the point of me wanting to start a confrontation, which is not something that comes naturally to me at all and suddenly I realized how disconnected I was from my truth. Here I am on this spiritual journey of becoming more connected to who I am and while at times it is fully there other times it is not and mostly the not comes from Instagram.

Over the past few weeks, I had been giving Instagram so much negative momentum that it was consuming me and leading me away from my own path with every double tap, search, dig and unfollow I was getting. Instead of starting any negative communication between this specific post and my ego within a split second I decided it was time for me to disconnect from this platform in a way I never have before. Enter “detox”. Of course, I had no idea how deep this would actually end up going. So let’s start here. 

Tips for starting a Social Media detox: there are two. Turn off notifications, all of them. Step two move the app to the very end of your phone.

Within 30 minutes I was having a dance party by myself in my living room, completely connecting with joy! I felt free.

Within an hour, I realized how many times my brain triggered me to go to my phone and open the app. (This is why you need to move it). Within 5 hours I realized that this Instagram thing is a full-blown addiction. It has all the characteristics, the constant trigger to go back to something that fills some sort of a void, whether it is an emotional one or a numbing void it is an escape into a reality that is not your own, which is not natural, aka not your path. 

Realizing all of this within the first few hours of taking myself out of the lives of the 2000 people I follow and fully focusing on my own was more than just eye opening. 

This was when I decided I would also write about this experience as I want to be a vessel for inspiration for others to maybe do the same or at minimum take the power back from this platform and use it in a more aware and conscious way.

This is what triggered my first lesson. Why do we actively choose to go to those virtual places and look at things we well know are not going to make us feel good or inspired? Our human life is not meant to know things about 2000 different people at the same time, or constantly be streamed with their lives, where they are and what they are doing. It is not in your path to know what girl is liking your ex-boyfriend’s photos and the other way around, the story you attach to it is simply a story and is not part of what your brain should be focusing on, it should be focusing on you because you are important. It is not part of your path to be eating a macaroon and jumping off of a waterfall at the same time. Truth is, we can choose again, we can choose not to over stimulate with other peoples life paths. I am not saying to give up instagram all together and I am not even saying it is entirely a negative place to be, I am just saying mostly to myself let’s look at it differently. Or at least I will from here on out, my good friend Sara brought this lane theory to light and it could not have resonated more! Just stay in your lane and actively choose not to be thrown out of it. What we have forgotten is that what is not right now right here is not part of your life and should have no negative effect on you, you are the creator of your own life, triggers that make you feel less than joy have no business being part of your brains daily activity. 

On day 3 I realized the epic pull towards multitasking my brain has. Maybe that is why it’s constantly so noisy in there. Why do we feel the need to constantly shift focus? When was the last time you really watched a good TV show and I mean, 1 episode of quality TV. For me, the answer to that was “I can not remember.” I am supremely guilty of watching TV shows I already know inside out so that I can, also scroll on Instagram and not miss anything important. I feel like Instagram encourages unfocused living when abused! I managed to start watching This Is Us. 1 episode a day fully engaged and it was an entirely new way of watching TV. If I am being completely open, which I am, the reason I didn’t start watching it sooner was that I knew I had to focus on it, this thought is the reason I bring up the TV show in the first place. It got me thinking about all the other things in life I am just not doing because it requires my full focus and what my brain is triggering is a distraction. This thought could be spilling into the rest of my life and that is scary. Without even knowing it you are shifting focus constantly and constantly letting yourself get triggered by bad decisions that give bad thoughts more and more momentum and then you numb, with Instagram! What a cycle! 

Things I found myself doing more of because I did have Instagram to steer my mind off of my surroundings.

1. I laughed out loud to myself more than ever

2. I talked to myself more

3. I texted with my friends and family more often

4. I forgot where my phone was more than once

5. I felt myself being way more present in conversations and in other human interactions

6. I meditated every day

7. I went to bed earlier because it felt like I already did everything I could that day 

8. I listened to Abraham Hicks

Day 5. My mind feels calmer than it has in a really long time. I feel like I am in control of every interaction I have, whether that is with someone in the elevator, on face-time with my family or even with my own thoughts. I feel like I have successfully detached myself from the negative momentum that makes me actively search for things that I know will make me not feel good. These are just a few realizations that really shook my core at how Instagram serves us/me, again when overused and abused. 

Now that I have created some distance I feel like I owe it to myself to set some boundaries around Instagram. 

1. Do not judge my own creativity on unfollows, likes and comments it is about quality, not quantity

2. Unfollow who truly does not serve your own well being there is no need to be involved in lives that don’t make you feel good at all you wouldn’t do that in real life, keep someone around that constantly makes you feel depressed, would you? 

3. Actively choose to not look for “joy” in the wrong places

4. Stay in my own path and believe in it with every inch of my being

5. Vow to be the positive influence to others as I would want to see in my feed as well

6. Take moments to show a struggle as well, everyone’s lives are messy at times and its OK to share that too

This was one of the most incredible experiments I have ever done for myself. My intention was not ever to actually write about it, it also was never meant to last 5 days but it felt too important not to and it feels really good to share this with you all. Whoever it may reach, whoever made it to the end of this article, you are the person that I hope is now smiling with relief that you are not alone and you are the person who I consider a friend a follower a confident and a peer. So thank you, for being on this journey with me.

One more thing before I leave this topic, I have never said this out loud before but social media and journalism in this way it is my job, as much as I try and disguise “paid” content I promise that I do vet every product, item or experience I share and I do share my honest and best opinion about it all. Going forward the vetting process will be narrowed down even more to things that matter to me, that make me feel good and in turn, might make you feel good and that also serve the environment, your health, your wellbeing and of course the never-ending experiment with conscious beauty. My goal is to be on a journey with you to become a more awake, aware and conscious human being. If this seems like something you are excited about please follow and share your thoughts and feelings, if not, feel free to unfollow because thanks to my lessons these past 5 days that is now entirely OK with me. Love you all. 

The post What I learnt from a 5 day Instagram detox appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Everything that is not unconditional love is exhausting. Conditions and rules do not make up our happiness, but maybe these thoughts can steer you in the right direction when it feels like you are off track.

Photos by Brit Gill from the Soulful Entrepreneur retreat

It should be so simple: Anything that is not unconditional love is exhausting. When I attach conditions to my happiness, success, or love, I begin to suffocate the very feelings I am trying to nurture. You know what I am referring to – it’s easy to identify when we see other people suspending the experience of their happiness until they have achieved the perfect car, house, and partner. But conditional living is far more insidious than I ever expected.

Sometimes it feels like my world is all about control – how much can I control the actions, reactions, and interactions in my life. From my relationship to my body (Thin enough yet? Flexible enough yet? Probably not) to my work relationships (never tired, sad, or unprepared no matter how badly my life is falling apart outside the office) it often feels like I am a tight-rope walker in a circus, balancing beautiful porcelain plates on my arms and head. Then the wobbles set in.

It shows most in my relationships with loved ones. When a best friend is having a bad day, and completely ruins what should be an easy night out. When a parent expresses disappointment or judgment of the choices I have made about my life. When a date forgets to call, does not text back soon enough, or walks away. The knot of anxiety and self-doubt tightens in my chest. I protect, I close, I resist. I control. I get conditional. I resolve to only share the good times with friends, to adapt my opinions to suit family, to engage in complex (and unspoken) rules when dating. And somehow my darling brain has convinced me that these are the conditions my happiness requires.

My happiness disagrees.

I thrive when I release the conditions I so often think of as necessary. When I run for the joy of it, do yoga for the comfort of it, adorn for my own satisfaction. When I work willingly, lost in the detail, in the joy of producing my best work. When I release an imposed agenda on friends and family. When I am a generous lover, vulnerable in my humanity, humble in my acceptance of relentless change.

Anything that is not unconditional love is exhausting. I will forget this. And then I will remember again. I will control, apply conditions. And then I will release. All that matters is that I practice remembering. Perfectly imperfect.

A Yoga practice for Unconditional Love:

Tadasana (standing)

Crescent Lunge (left/right)

Down Dog

Low Lunge (left/right)

Twisted crescent lunge (left/right)

Twisted Down Dog (right hand to left shin + vice versa)

Twisted Low Lunge (optional quad stretch) (left/right)

Pigeon (left/right)

Cat/Cow

Reclined twist

Savasana

The post If there was a roadmap to Unconditional Love appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Happy April! I am inviting creativity by setting the mood at home with the perfect playlist and a custom diffuser blend with my favorite Vitruvi essential oils.

Here is my custom diffuser cocktail to spark creativity and innovation using all my favorite Vitruvi essential oils. Mix these with water in your diffuser to create a heavenly fresh and grounding spring scent in your home.

8 drops Rosemary

8 drops Frankincense

4 drops Cedarwood

3 drops Geranium

Bring Aromatherapy into your home with Vitruvi’s essential Oils

Happy April friends. I though this is the perfect fresh start to create something new for you. I am really focused on creating space for creativity and for new ideas to prosper and flourish. 

It all begins with setting the mood surroundings are a direct reflection of your vibe. My home is my sanctuary and also the place where I work and usually flow when it comes to creativity.

This process does not just happen without help. Windows open, breeze in, candles on, candles off. Music on music off, walk around the apartment play with my diffuser scents! This is a process of an alchemist! Creativity needs to be sparked. To me this happens with stimulating my scenes. 

This week I sat down and tested out a few scents for my diffuser that made me focus, feel the spring vibes and help me feel that inner happiness more deeply. This past month I have been struggling with maintaining focus and motivation to execute. I am interpreting this blockage with being a little in my head and airy about things, so I tried to find a fresh but grounding scent to bring me back to earth and to change the mood from Winter to Spring. 

Excited to share my blend of Vitruvi essential oils with you guys, maybe it will also bring you back to earth and help you execute all those ideas that have been flying around in your head in this first part of the year of 1111. Spring is a time for new beginnings and to me this is what it smells like. 

To complete the mood you need the soundtrack. Creating a playlist is nothing short of a science project for me. I intently listen to music and sounds so the vibe and the flow of each song needs to be just right. The flow of a playlist needs to be something you can tune in and out of as you wish. Either a focus tool or a refocus tool. Yes, this is how much thought goes into my work day playlists. Which is why I am so excited to share this one anyone that feels like they need a bit of external help to plug in right now. I tested it while working, while walking through the city and also while lying on my living room floor. She is ready for you! Music is an escape from any real world noise wether that is actual noise or thoughts that need to be left in your past. It triggers our emotions, and can stimulate your creativity especially if it gets you moving and smiling. 

Follow the playlist I curated for Spring

I named this one Spring Forward, using this switch in seasons like a portal to jump the now  and to leave the past 3 months behind me with a little wink emoji and a “K Bye” nod. If you love the playlist, hit follow and discover some other playlists that are on my Spotify as well. 

The post Spark your creativity with a playlist and custom diffuser blend appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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This summers hottest swimwear line puts a new sexy spin on sustainability. Say hello to Vitamin A’s newest collection.
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Shop the floral One Piece

Shop the Stripes

Shop this classic solid bikini

Shot by Dylana Suarez at Aqua Wellness Resort in Nicaragua

Shop this Eco Luxe sustainable swimwear brand now! 

Searching for the perfect collection of bikinis to stock up on this Summer. Before you head anywhere hot, make sure you at least try on a Vitamin A bikini.

I dont know about you, but I always find it hard to find a bikini brand that fits with no fuss, every style with chic colors that can be worn by the pool in Vegas or on the beach in Nicaragua. Just by feeling it in your hands its an instant reveal that the fabrics are created with luxury in mind. And let me reveal the bonus, these swimmies are sustainably produced in California. Sustainability is sexy, Vitamin A has the environment in mind as well as your beach status! The eco luxe fabrics they use are made out of recycled Nylon! Brilliant. I could have not imaged a better selection of swim wear for our Nicaragua trip. Its one of those bikinis that you can actually wear all day in and out of the water without feeling uncomfortable, hey maybe thats because of the quality in fabrics.

Natalie and Dylana and I all have totally different bodies and every style fit us perfectly! Which is sometimes a puzzle to me, as they are a lot taller than I am, but yet the one piece works on us both!

Lets face it our beach time was mainly spent on our own private beach in the quaint bay that Aqua Wellness Resort is positioned in. The beach is private and offers a few options for water sports, we made use of paddle boards and boogie boards for playing in the waves and also working on our beach bods. The other half of the time was spent relaxing in hammocks and dancing with the waves on shore.

The post Vitamin A puts a sexy spin on sustainability appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Strap into Freedom and book a flight to Nicaragua! So excited to share a special part of this world with you including a quick 5 step guide of how to strap into your freedom this summer.

Shop the BEST sandal there is the new, Teva Float

Shop Dylanas sandal, Natalies Sandal, My sandal

Shop the Moon and Stars Sandal

Shot during our stay at Aqua Wellness Resort in Nicaragua

Featuring Natalie Off Duty and Dylana Suarez

Another adventure is in the books. We reunited on our annual girls trip in Nicaragua this time and of course in tow the newest sandals by Teva. Truly the best footwear to pack for a beach side adventure. Dylana, Natalie and I have been to a few tropical destinations together, we love exploring and being casual, comfortable and stylish all in a days work. Wait, also, to emphasize I met Natalie and Dylana through this amazing blogger world on a trip to Malibu. I dont throw around the word soul mate lightly but these two were meant to be in my life. Such inspirations when it comes to work ethics and creativity so if you dont already follow them then now you should! Click on their names above.

Nicaragua, is freedom. I miss waking up with the sun rise, throwing on my yoga gear and my Tevas to walk through the little pathways to the yoga hut that overlooks the ocean in a magical way. The salty air creating dreadlocks in my hair and me easing into not caring about anything but this exact moment. And then a sun salutation before 9am! The Aqua Wellness resort is literally a retreat. It is the experience of what strapping into happiness and freedom feels like.

What does freedom mean to you? Freedom means something else to every one. To me, I am learning more and more happiness comes from the recognition of simplicity. The little things that make life sweet like friends, sharing laughs, sharing dances while watching the sunset on the beach, moving your body first thing in the morning. Not putting on make up and only having 5 outfits to choose from every morning, which include bikinis. Minimizing a thought and concern process is key to feeling light on your toes. I took simplicity to another level on this getaway and only brought a carry on. I figured, I am going on a retreat that is meant to encourage freedom and happiness so less is more and more is quality time with friends in a magical place. My Teva sandals encourage simplicity. The decision making process is next to nothing because they match every beach outfit, they are all comfortable and can handle water, climbing on rocks, long drives and also wandering new cities. Plus, they are super travel friendly when you are short on suitcase space.

5 ways to strap into your own freedom

1. Find joy in simplicity and celebrate the small things and feeling light on your feet

2. Share a laugh or a smile with a friend or a stranger

3. Watch a sunset, like really watch it, dance to it sing to it cherish it

4. Wear things that make you feel good

5. Travel to an unknown location wether it is around the corner of where you live or a trip to the tropics feel the contrast it gives you. That is freedom.

I am so lucky to get to experience new places the way I do, so I have made a pact with myself to make the very most out of every opportunity I get to travel the world. Collaborating with friends and meeting new people and getting creative with brands is part of the quest to experience freedom. Make a pact to experience your upcoming summer with the hashtag #StrapIntoFreedom in mind. And snag yourself a pair of these Tevas, BECAUSE they are actually the best sandals and will not hold you back an inch for any adventure you have planned, not even walking through rivers and getting swept away by ocean waves. Also, great for festivals! *winkwink

The post Strap into Freedom and visit Nicaragua appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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Rethinking your morning routine, Mama’s! If a mad dash to the door is an every day occurrence with whining kids and a wet top knot, then it is time to build a morning routine that will help you and your kids gain some balance. 

The alarm goes off and automatically you hit snooze…once twice and then the third time until you realize that now your late and will be rushing to get organized. Frantically getting dressed and then looking in the mirror and feeling like crap because you’re not sure what on earth you just put on. Then it’s a mad dash to get yourself and or your family up and out the door. If this is what your typical morning as a Mom looks like then its time to create a  morning routine. 

 As a parent, we know too well that trying to get your littles up, fed, dressed and out the door on time can end up in a complete mess. Having three kids under the age of 5 I have seen my fair share of meltdowns well before 8 am.  I have worked hard on creating a healthy morning routine that leaves my whole family full of excitement for the day rather than whining with frustration.  Below I’m sharing with you what our average morning looks like.

Get up on YOUR time my own morning routine

Just like kids, adults benefit from a regular routine too. Over the years I have learned that I’m in a way better frame of mind if I stick to my own morning rituals before the kids are awake, because once they are up its go go go question after question, and it doesn’t give me time to connect to my inner being. My husband is usually up and out the door by 545 so I usually try and get up then too. “Early bird gets the worm” right? 

First things first, Don’t grab your phone and open emails and Instagram. All that can wait.  Try to limit screen time as much as possible. I jump in the shower to wake myself up.  This is when I usually take the time to set intentions for the day. A few of my personal favorites are: Everything will work out for me. I’m ready to be compassionate, yet tough enough to stay true to the “rules”, I will remain calm enough to deal with each meltdown that comes my way,  I am guided by a greater power.  I will look with wonder in all areas of life. 

 Swapping the shower for an in bed meditation is always a great option too. I usually do this if something has been on my mind or bothering me. It’s so easy to put on tights and a tee every day when you are a stay at home mom (SAHM because well the reality is most of my days are spent on the floor with them or driving to and from, but on occasion I swap my tights and soaking wet top knot for a cute outfit and blown out hair. It may take a bit more time, but the effort is always sure to put a little extra pep in my step.

Once I’m ready my youngest is usually up.  I don’t mind this as it give us alone time and well, he doesn’t talk yet so its still really quiet and peaceful. Ha. We head to the kitchen and before anything I have a glass of water. I usually have a pitcher of Lemon water in the fridge as my kids love it as well. They think its “ fancy water”.  A great alternative to Lemon Water is Pure Rosewater. It has so many benefits such as balances your energy levels, helps to detoxify your body, improves your mood and freshens your breath just to name a few. You will need to buy Drinkable Bulgarian rosewater and dilute it in a pitcher of water. 

Now the Magic happens, Coffee! Mug in hand and I sit. I sit in Silence. I love to let the early morning sounds consume my thoughts. The summer is the best for this as I take my coffee right outside.  Sometimes I like to watch the news, but mostly this is where I find my phone and read The Daily Skimm App. LOVE this!  This app will fill you in on all the important News you need to know right in the palm of your hand, and all 10 minutes or less. By this point my kids are up and the hustle of the morning begins.  So do you have to wake at 545 am? No. What matters most is you give yourself time to be with your self and create a routine that will leave you with a focused mind and be feeling productive.

Get a head start the night before!

Morning brain, is that a thing? Well, I definitely know Baby brain is, so be sure to eliminate as much decision making the night before.  Preparing the night before is good for everyone but especially when you have tiny humans with big ideas and too many decisions. I actually have my son help pack his snack the night before. This way there is no “ What’s in my lunch bag, I don’t want that, I want this” happening in the am.  Both my son and daughter pick out their clothes and place them on their dressers at night.  I LOVE dressing up my kids, but this was becoming a reoccurring argument with my son as he always wanted something else to wear. I’ve realized I have to let them be individuals and allow them to make decisions on their own, and if it’s picking out their own clothes, then so be it.

Teaching your kids how to dress themselves will not only give you more time but will build their confidence and enhance a sense of achievement. My daughter has been dressing her self since she was 20 months and comes out every morning with a huge grin on her face. “ Look mummy, im ready”. 

To ensure children get a well-rested good nights sleep they usually follow a pre-bedtime routine. I highly suggest adults do this too. Pick out your clothes, Create a To-do list for tomorrow, go through your next days’ agenda, and then put your phone away and try and have 30-60 mins of Blackout time before you hit the hay. But we can revisit a night time routine in more detail another day.

Create a step by step morning routine for the kids

Every night before bed my son likes to know what tomorrow will bring.  I will run through the day with him and tell him everything I have planned. Him knowing the tomorrows plan makes him feel included rather than just told what to do and when to do it. He has often reminded me of things I may be forgetting. To avoid the mayhem between breakfast and the door I use a Melissa and Doug chore chart and if they follow through they will be rewarded at the end of the week. Let’s face it kids love a good “treat” to look forward to. 

We eat Breakfast as a family, and although it currently is not at all peaceful, I enjoy it and my wish is that one day they will too.

Breakfast, vitamins, get dressed, put dirty clothes in the laundry, wash face and brush teeth, hair done. Once this is done, I allow them to watch a show while I get organized and shoes and coats are ready to go. Oh and I always ask them to get their shoes on at least 15 minutes before we are about to head out the door, this way I don’t ever feel like I’m rushing them. 

My daughter once asked me “ why we have to hurry, where are we going? “  (ME: Hurry up Ivy lets go let go…come on, get in the truck) and it made me stop and think. Shoot we’re only going to the grocery store and I have nowhere else to be, guess we’re not in a rush after all. Lesson learned. My children are my greatest teachers. 

Let the weekends be carefree

One of the easiest ways to feel “carefree” is to make a conscious effort to appreciate each moment and focus on the good things that are happening. You have to choose to feel good no matter what anyone else is doing or saying. On the weekends my family likes to stay in our Pj’s as long as we like, watch tv in my bed, and slowly ease into the day.  No emails, no important phone calls, just you and your loved ones. Be sure to get out and do something FUN.  This is so easy to do once you allow yourself to just stop trying. Stop trying to fix things that are wrong, or trying to change someone or correct them. Just BE.  laugh lots and simply enjoy each other.  I feel as though through the week I am always telling my kids how its “gonna go down”, so on the weekends, we like to open up the planning to them. What do they want to do? Sometimes its just to build a fort or go get banana bread at a local coffee shop.  Do these things and make them feel like they have a say in the family activities.

Everyone can benefit from a morning routine. Not just parents.  It important to remember that what works for me, may not work for you. Take some time to think about what will benefit you or your family the most and start there.

The post Rethinking your morning routine for the entire family. appeared first on TOBRUCK AVE.

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