Etsy Now Open! Sort of…

Slowly, over the next month or so, I’m going to be adding pieces that I have for sale up on my brand new Etsy Page.

I’m always available for commissions, so if you have a special request, please contact me at chantalle.mail@gmail.com or in the contact form on this page or the Etsy page.*

Check out my Etsy page at this Link! 

*Please note that commissions take anywhere between 2 – 3 weeks once a non-refundable materials fee has been paid.
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Relationship Podcast – ‘Reflectionships’: Episode One Show Notes

Haven’t caught up? Listen right here! Or click to subscribe to us on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play.

 

In this episode, Gaspare and I recount how it all started five years ago, when he and I met and fell in love under romantic, and less than optimal circumstances.
Starting our podcast off in this style is inspired by Kevin Smith‘s Podcast “Jay & Silent Bob Get Old”, Which if you haven’t sat down and listened to at least the first 10 episodes, you should really do, because you will immediately want Kevin Smith to be your best friend.
We thought it was important to start off talking about our relationship for a couple of different reasons. For one, our relationship is something we’ve worked really hard at – you’ll soon see why in subsequent episodes (Sorry for leaving things on a cliffhanger ^_~!). Secondly, we think it’s super important that you set off down this path of self-discovery by examining your closest relationships, and that’s what “Reflectionships” is all about.

Show Notes

  • The song used in the intro was Chill Day by Lakey Inspired. Check him out on Soundcloud by clicking HERE.
  • I mentioned that Gaspare and I ate Filipino Eggrolls that my aunt made for my cousin’s birthday. They’re called ‘Lumpia Shanghai’, and if you want to make them for yourself, one of my favourite YouTubers (EmmymadeinJapan) has an excellent video HERE on how to make them.
  • For those interested parties, I’m quite sure the ‘adult film’ that Gaspare and I accidentally watched with his mother in the hotel room was 1973’s Story of a Cloistered Nun. It is available for your ironic pleasure HERE.
  • The Hotel we stayed at in Niagara was the Americana Conference Resort Spa & Waterpark. It does not come recommended, unless you’re looking for an ironic place to shoot your indie film.
  • The Italian Restaurant that we ate at in Niagara Falls was Antica Pizzeria & Ristorante. I believe they have a wood-fire oven, and their dough is a pretty traditional Neapolitan. Recommended.
  • Furthermore, we briefly talked about ‘arancini’ or rice balls in the podcast. This is a pretty decent recreation of a Sicilian recipe, presented by a little English guy in a strange chef’s smock. I really can’t recommend these enough. Click HERE to commence mouth-watering.

Advice and Tips from this Episode

The biggest tip we had to share in this episode when it comes to launching yourself into relationships is to step outside your comfort zone. Literally EVERYONE who has any experience with relationships will tell you that this is one of the steps to putting yourself out there, but let me expand on this point.
For me, travel plans (AKA, going anywhere more than an hour away from home) usually requires a week’s worth of planning. I am just NOT the kind of person who goes on a road trip of more than a few hours without knowing exactly where I’ll be going or stopping along the way. When I drove to California seven years ago, I knew exactly where I was going to be staying, and called my family from my designated hotels every single night. So, deciding to go to Niagara Falls with Gaspare and his family was very much against my general level of comfort.
Getting outside of your comfort zone means doing something that might feel wrong. A good thing to remember (or to clarify) is that so long as no one is getting hurt, or you’re not putting yourself in harm’s way, it’s general safe to go for it, even if it makes you a little queasy.

What is this, and why am I doing it?

I’ve been creating blogs since the dawn of the social internet, and let me tell you, there’s been a bunch of them: personal blogs, comic book blogs – hell, I even ran a gonzo journalism based blog while I was in college. Thing is, I never really stuck with them. I was young and became easily disenfranchised about what it meant to be successful or even just good at something. No one was reading, and so why was I writing? It’s really easy to look around the social internet and see a bunch of people reaching even MORE people. That’s what I wanted, but the idea of building an audience (or tribe, as we now refer to it in the social space) seemed daunting and impossible.
My feelings were a very strange combination of egotism (“I think I’m thoughtful and amazing and everyone should listen to me!”) and an extreme lack of outward confidence (“Why doesn’t anyone want to listen to me? Am I not as thoughtful and amazing as I thought?”). If I was so cool, if my ideas were worth listening to, if my art was beautiful, and if there were SO MANY people in this internet sphere, where were they? Why weren’t they listening to me?
And most importantly: Why did I need their validation?
The adage: ‘if you build it, they will come’ was sounding more an more like bullshit every day, and suddenly I could feel myself giving up. Before I realized it, it had been years before I had started anything new and it was deeply depressing. I was always starting little projects and granted, they never went anywhere, but I was happier having started them then I was when I wasn’t working on anything.
So, I decided that I wanted to invest my time, energy and yes, even some money, into starting a project and actually seeing it through. But what would it be? If it was going to be a personal project, then it should probably be something that speaks to me and works with who I am as a person.
Earlier this year, I started painting. I began producing abstract work, and started actually getting some attention for it. I sold a few pieces, and I began to feel even better – not just because I was making money (though that was nice), but rather because I felt validated in my interests and passions, and began to feel like maybe, just maybe, if I put in the work then I could make an impact after all.
That’s all we want in life, isn’t it? We want to feel like we’ve lived a meaningful life – that we’ve had an impact on others.
But I wasn’t a painter or an artist, or certainly that wasn’t ALL I was. I wanted to be more. I wanted to be a lifeline for others. I wanted to make people laugh. I wanted to help people through the hard parts of their lives. I wanted to help people learn. I wanted to see more people achieve this feeling of personal validation.
It’s hard to do that with just abstract art, but as I sat and compiled my skill set, I realized that I could do a whole lot more if I was willing to put in the work.
I didn’t even really know what I was doing until my a good friend of mine watched as I gave a garbled explanation of my project to a mutual friend of ours. in an effort to save me, she said:
“She’s starting a ‘Lifestyle Brand’.”
Such clarity!
I suppose I was. I mean, after all I did have these big ideas and plans that covered a bunch of different topics on several different platforms. So, that’s what I’ve decided to do!
It’s going to look a little different then most of the other “lifestyle brands” you see out there. I’m not going to sell you anything, or take pictures of the ocean with my laptop in the foreground. I’m not going to take pictures of cups of coffee on marble counters, to tell you about my favourite beauty brands. There’s plenty of that out there, and I’ll leave to to those who have a more cooler aesthetic then I do.
I want you and I to be friends. I want you to get to know me and I want to get to know you. If you think I suck, well that’s OK! Move along and have a great day. But, I get real joy for helping others to not take things so seriously, and to really get as much as they can out of life. If I can help you do that, even for just one day: Mission Accomplished!
Along with this blog (that will be updated regularly), I’ve started making videos, which are focused on self-care, mental well-being, sharing inspiration and motivation to enjoy life and be happy – think of it as going on my adventures with me! I’m also starting a few different podcasts focused on building relationships, whether they be professional, romantic, or deep friendships. Essentially, I want to create an online space and community which focuses on optimism, inclusion, expression, relationships, self-acceptance and positivity as a philosophy.
I want YOU to join ME as we work together to improve our lives and the lives of those who surround us. I want us to explore the aspects of our lives that are difficult and work hard with an emphasis on kindness (to ourselves and to others), to reach our desired outcomes.
Think of all this as my love letter to life! Come with me as we figure out business, fitness, nutrition, mental betterment, positive mindsets, creativity, relationships, and lets laugh our butts off while we do it.
I’d love it if you keep close tabs of this blog my adding it to your bookmarks or following me on my social platforms (all the links are in the upper right hand corner for your browser window). You’ll be seeing a lot more in the coming weeks as we get started.