Taking a Break

Hey all, you may have noticed that I deactivated my instagram – maybe not. I’m going to take a break from being Kinijalele for a minute and really focus on Savanna. I promise this is temporary. I just need some time to figure out my direction. Thank you for you understanding and I love you all so much.

I’ll be back in full force soon.

Vacation Recap – London

Welcome to the third and final part of my vacation recap! Click here for Part 1 and Part 2.

We got into London around probably 2 PM and only had about 6 hours there total to see everything we wanted to see.

The first stop was the Tate Modern, a massive art gallery in London. Admission was free for about 5 of the floors. I took my time here to check out the exhibit on modern art, controversy and feminism.

Then we took a walking bridge across the Thames where we got a nice view of the London bridge. Time didn’t allow for us to go check out the major attractions, so this was the closest I could get.

For dinner we ate at Ottolenghis, a tapas bar with Mediterranean and Israeli inspiration. The food was incredible – and they served up a healthy portion of olives to start!

The lighting was also phenomenal here. We couldn’t resist taking a handful of photos while we waited for our food. The ring featured in these images is from a Local London jeweler called Telegrapher’s Lab – I saw her booth at the market and had to own one of her pieces. She doesn’t currently have an online shop, but trust me – I’m waiting.

After dinner we packed up our desserts (including a killer gluten free cake) and got back on the train to our hotel. We had early morning flights, said our goodbyes at the airport and returned home – it was thankfully a super uneventful travelling day.

It was an incredible trip, but it sure is nice to be home for a minute before the craziness of moving ensues.

Vacation Recap – Stoke and Exeter

This is the second part of the three part recap of my trip to North Devon, England. For part one, click here.

On Wednesday we went to the Stoke Cathedral and Cemetery. There was so much history here you could feel the age of the energy in this area. With tombstones dating back to the 1700s, it was amazing. It’s so surreal to be in an area with such old buildings coming from Vancouver where everything is so new in comparison.

We found two tombstones from the mid 19th century that marked where Seb’s ancestors were buried which is incredible.

From the church we took a walk a few miles to the Hartland Abbey, which had some incredible grounds. We didn’t spend a lot of time here, but I couldn’t help but try to capture the beauty of this amazing building.

Then we ventured back into Hartland just as a storm began to roll in. Hartland was such a quaint, interesting village that seemed to have everything you could need regardless of the fact that it was tiny.

On Thursday we took a road trip south to Exeter, which is such an amazing city with such rich history. We went to the Exeter Cathedral which was an amazing example of traditional gothic architecture. It was truly breathtaking how detailed and artistically designed it was.

We then walked up to the Exeter Castle (Rougemont Caste) where the plaque honouring the last people executed for witchcraft in England was. It was very sobering, and reminded me how blessed we are for coming so far.

Exeter got me very excited about moving to Ottawa, where maybe the history isn’t quite as rich, but there is so much more character there than anywhere I’ve lived yet.

OUTFIT DETAILS | JACKET – Forever 21 | SHIRT – Express | PANTS – Le Chateau | SHOES – Kangaroos

Vacation Recap – Hartland Quay, Dartmoor, Ilfracombe and Lundy

We’re back from England! We actually will have been for a few days by the time this post goes up, but it took me a while to get this all put together. I’ve decided to break the trip into three parts as we did so much I could never fit it all into one. It was an amazing trip, and it was so refreshing to go off the grid for a week and take a trip unlike any other trip I’ve ever been on.

We stayed in the English countryside in North Devon at a place called Lundy View. It was the most serene place I’ve ever been, without a tall building or any civilization as far as the eye could see. It was just vast landscapes and the ocean. At night we couldn’t hear or see anything – an incredible escape.

On our first day we ventured down to a village called Hartland for breakfast, and then went for a hike down at the quay. This was the most incredible coastline I’ve ever laid eyes on, and no photo could ever do it justice – but I tried my best. We were very fortunate to have absolutely stellar weather for the first half of our trip with temperatures above 30C! Luckily for us we were on the coast the whole time, so we had the sea breeze to break up the heat.

On the second day, we headed south to Dartmoor National Park for a walk. There were sheep, ponies and cows all over the park roaming free in the middle of the road. We went for a walk off the trails through the terrain to find this tor with a metal sword shape object stuck in it. (we couldn’t pull it out, so I guess we’re not the chosen ones)

On day three we headed to Ilfracombe to take a ferry off the coast to Lundy Island, Ilfracombe was such a cool town. All the boats in the harbour had double keels to accommodate the changes in the tide. I’ve never seen this before, but it was pretty brilliant.

The Ilfracombe Harbour also had this amazing sculpture by Damien Hirst. The subject, Verity, is a pregnant woman holding a sword in one hand and the scales of justice in the other. She’s also standing on a mound of old law books. Breathtaking really.

After we caught the ferry in Ilfracombe we headed towards Lundy Island for a hike, it was an amazing (hot) place with beautiful views and landscapes (and more sheep and more cows) As a westcoast girl, I’m always taken aback by seeing the vast ocean with nothing on the other side. When we look out on the horizon here, there’s always more islands off the coast, it was really amazing for me to see just an empty sea as far as the eye could see.

In my next two posts I’ll share about our days exploring Hartland, Exeter and London!

We’re leaving Vancouver!

I felt like now was a good time to sit down and talk to you about what’s going on. I know that lately I haven’t been keeping you up to date on the happenings of my life, and I know that’s the only reason some of you keep up to date on my blog.

Partially I haven’t been blogging about my life as much as I’m realizing that some things just aren’t that important anymore. My career is not a staple of my identity and at this point in my life, I don’t have to associate my happiness, direction and purpose with what I do during business hours. That being said, in the big picture, no major changes there.

I also haven’t been blogging as much about my life as we’ve had a lot in the works, I didn’t want to say anything until it was the right time.

Now that that’s out of the way, I do have very big news. Over three years ago I wrote this and it’s no secret that my life was never the same after that. Now, it’s time to close this chapter of my life as Sebastian and I pack up our belongings, get in the car, and move across the country, to Ottawa!

Seb got into an amazing Masters program, and now felt like the perfect time for both of us to make a big move and start fresh. We’re both so excited to embark on this next journey together, and I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather drive through the prairies with.

So here’s to continuing to fall, now in tandem, and finding our footing eventually.

denim dreams.

Can we all take a second to appreciate this denim jacket? Guys, I’m obsessed with it. It’s so comfortable and versatile, I’ve worn it almost every day since I got it, and I have no regrets about any outfit I pair with it. It’s perfectly over-sized without completely swallowing my petite frame. A true miracle jacket.

I love to rock it casually with some black skinny jeans, a t-shirt and ankle boots for a super cool and casual vibe. It also has massive pockets to make up for the lack of pocket room in women’s skinny jeans.

I’m also in love with the way it wears as a little more of a going out mood. Here I threw my jacket over a simple, thrifted LBD for an effortlessly cool look. (Please note, nothing about me is effortless, or cool – I just like to give off that vibe)

I promise guys, this jacket is the best piece that I have ever purchased from Forever 21 – it’s excellent quality and has a great weight to it – I will wear it until there are holes in it, and then even still (if distressed denim is still trendy).

Why I Blog

This is a question I ask myself regularly, and people also ask me. The answer always changes, for my long-time followers, you will know that this is my second serious blog, and my first blog was about my life abroad. I found myself lacking motivation once returning to Canada, as I didn’t feel like my life was as interesting any more. This was probably the the truth, and I took a couple years off posting before realizing that I don’t have to just write about what I do, I can also write about what I think, and how I feel.

I blog because I have a gut feeling that I’m supposed to. I blog because once in a while someone reaches out to me and tells me something I wrote deeply spoke to them. I blog because I know that I have something to say that someone needs to hear. I blog for people who are struggling, people who aren’t struggling and I blog for my younger self.

You’ll notice that my posts have been more fluffy lately, less heavy – this isn’t because I’m selling myself out, but because I’m trying to expand my reach. I will always post about the things that I feel need to be said, but not everything has to be heavy, dark and gloomy. Sometimes the things I just look good, and sometimes I just want to talk about something I love.

I know some of you are here for the emotional, personal posts, and I know some of you are absolutely not here for it. But I’m going to continue following my vision. I want to be able to point out the light at the end of the tunnel for everyone. I want to be able to share my past and share my growth and inspire people. I want people going through hard things to see where I came from and where I am now, and know that they can do it too. But I also want people to know which lotions don’t have gluten, and which hair products are good for perms.

So I guess in short, I blog because my intuition tells me someone wants to hear what I have to say.

sweater weather in back alleys.

These past few days in Vancouver have been so cold, what happened to summer? It’s mid-June and it feels like April! I’m so ready for the sun to come back permanently.

Seb and I leave today for England, fingers crossed for better weather there. I’ll write all about it once I’m back.

I worked with a photographer and old friend for this shoot, it was a pleasure to work with Dave again after all these years. I feel comfortable around him and we always have a lot to chat about and to catch up on.

I’m also so thankful that Dave prefers shooting me in all black. It’s not secret that I’m most comfortable wearing black from head to toe, so it makes wardrobe planning that much easier.

Unfortunately, the sweater and boots I’m wearing are discontinued now – as they should be since it’s June. Anyways, I have to go jump on a flight, have a great weekend!

How I Keep my Hair Healthy After my Perm.

I’m so excited to be working with REDAVID Hair for this post and featuring my favourite products out of the Orchid Oil line for Curly or Extremely Damaged Hair.

REDAVID is a company local to Vancouver, Canada and is owned by Leonardo Redavid. Leonardo started as a hair stylist, and has been working in the hair industry for over 30 years. He is very involved with his company and product and runs each new product through three years of vigorous testing before putting it on the market.

All of the products are Sulfate and Paraben free and claim to:

  • Control Frizz
  • Detangle
  • Add radiant shine
  • Make hair soft and manageable
  • Restore moisture to normal levels
  • Achieve faster blowouts
  • Make hair stronger

I’ve had a lot of chemical treatments done to my hair, so it needs all the TLC it can get. I’ll touch on how I feel about these claims at the end of the post (except the blowouts thing, because I’ve never had one.)

Note: This product was given to me, but all thoughts and opinions will be my own.

I have used some of this product line in the past, namely the Orchid Oil Treatment and the Orchid Oil Curl Defining Cream.

As I’ve mentioned before, I have to be very careful with products that touch my skin, due to gluten reacting poorly with my body. These products are great, they don’t cause me to react, they don’t cause my scalp to get flaky, and as a oily girl, the oil is light weight enough that it doesn’t make feel like a grease ball.

This is a newer product to me, that I have only tried out for the purpose of this review and let me tell you. I LOVE THIS. This is the Orchid Oil Dual Therapy, which is a two-part system. It includes REDAVID REPAIR and REDAVID SHINE. Redavid Repair is loaded with nutrient rich botanical ingredients to help restore moisture, whereas Redavid Shine seals in the hair structure to reduce frizz and fly-aways. I like to use it before bed and sleep with it in as a super nourishing hair mask. I also used this on my cousins hair after she got out of the shower, she has a sensitive scalp so we use a lot of products to make brushing less painful. Brushing her hair after the shower didn’t seem any different, but the morning after when she was brushing her hair for school she asked me what the product was because she said he hair felt soft, weightless and tangle-free. Straight from the 9 year-old’s mouth, my friends.

I have been using the Orchid Oil Curl Defining Cream since shortly after I got my perm in September. I tried a couple other products before finding this one, and it is the ONLY PRODUCT that makes my curls as soft, defined and non-frizzy as I like it. It claims to build internal strength, while increasing body and fullness, and I have definitely found this to be true.

I have also been using the Orchid Oil Treatment daily since getting my perm. It helps tame the frizz, and also is amazing for when I straighten my hair. Everyone I know loves this product specifically for getting that sleek, straightened look when straightening out their curls. It’s lightweight enough that it doesn’t weigh down my curls, but it leaves my hair SO SOFT. I also use it with the Curl Defining Cream for really nourishing my curls.

I have also just recently started using the Orchid Oil Shampoo and Conditioner. So far I’ve found these to be the most hydrating shampoo and conditioner I’ve ever used and I’m very picky with my shampoos and conditioners. My major issues with shampoos is that they come in direct contact with my scalp, and if there’s gluten in them it makes my flakiness even worse. This product does not do that! As with everything else in this line, the shampoo and conditioner have a blend of botanical extracts that are rich in minerals, vitamins and essential fatty acids to increase strength, body and fullness.

Even though I’ve had a chemical perm, bleaching and colouring in my hair I really need this kind of nourishment. My hair feels just as healthy as it was before any chemical treatment.

I can honestly tell you, I love this line and the claims listed at the top of this post, I’ve found to be true. I understand that it’s not as cheap as drugstore products, but it’s worth the money. I also want to note, that everything in this line SMELLS INCREDIBLE. I wouldn’t say that you need to go and buy the entire collection right away, but I will say you NEED the Orchid Oil Treatment in your life. It comes in small sizes as well, and is such a great introduction to this line. If your hair has been exposed to chemical treatment, or is just feeling a dry or frizzy this is absolutely the product for you.

Unfortunately, you can’t buy REDAVID Hair Care online at this time, so please use the store locator to find a retailer near you. 

A Sunny Day at the Pier

Last weekend Seb and I took a day trip out to the New Westminster Quay, which happens to be my favourite place I’ve ever been to. I feel more at peace and more happiness when I’m here than anywhere else in the world I’ve had the pleasure of visiting. I love to walk along the boardwalk, explore the market and smell the fresh air.

My mom and I used to come here all the time when I was younger, and it will always hold happy memories. It’s also where Seb and I had our first kiss (sappy, I know). I sure will miss being able to come here whenever I need a pick me up.