Thursday, August 2, 2012

The show must go on...

Well, as some of you probably already know...  On Sunday, July 29 at 5PM, my dear Mamie took her last breath and joined 13 of the 14 Collins' siblings as well as my grand-father, Jean-Claude. 

Everyone is heartbroken...  she was a fine lady but she finally decided to let go.  Our family will be accepting condolences this coming weekend in St-Zotique

I will be fore ever grateful for all the good memories, the fact that she was there for all the important moments and for her wise advices...

I keep in mind her soft glance and her smile...  "Be good, honest and forgiven even when it hurts..."  I can hear her in my head for the last couple of day... 

"On ne choisi jamais de vieillir
On voudrai rever un peu plus
La vie n'est pas faite pour mourir
On meurt souvent bien entendu
Car la vie est si fragile..."

Merci Luc De La Rocheliere pour ces paroles appaisantes

Monday, July 16, 2012

Though times...

Nothing new but my biggest struggle in life is food.  I know for fact that emotions have a Lot to do with my food consumption and control.  Excuses or not… last 2 weeks have been extremely rough.  Bad news came as an unpleasant surprise.  My almost 95 years old grand-mother has been told she has a 3-4 years undiagnosed cancer.

I love my grand mother to pieces.  She is one extraordinary woman, the oldest of 14 kids of which she’s one of 2 still alive.  She’s seen a lot, travelled the world, loved dearly by all of us, her family.

I had to see her, talk to her, hold her and hug her… she still smiles like there was nothing.  She is serene but I can tell she’s tired.  It is painful but I know she’s had a good life surrounded by the people she loves and that love her very much.  When the time comes, I will be devastated but aren’t we all a little selfish when it is time to let go.  She made and is still making a major mark in our lives and I will be forever grateful for everything she thought me and all the good memories I have with her.

Made for Mamie with all my heart!
For Christmas, I had almost finished my nice February Lady Sweater but I was missing buttons.  The sweater had been sitting for a while buttonless until last week.  I brought the knit but forgot the buttons in Ottawa so I messaged my Facebook friend Becky Geoffrey desperate for matching buttons.  2 days later I got a message that the buttons were ready for pick up.  
She now has a little part of me and she did really appreciate it because she is always cold during the day.  

Hopefully, this is not the last time I see her but she told me 3 very important things: be good to others, be honest and be forgiving no matter how painful and hard it can be.  

Now, I need to be strong because there is no excuses not to get ready.  My rivals won't have anything to stop them.  I need to get myself together and work as hard as I can.  The competition will be fierce and I WANT to be up to part.  

Monday, June 11, 2012

My top 5...

My biggest battle in life is...  food.  I failed numerous time at getting in competition shape and failed because of fad diets but last year I discovered that there's ways to get good food in without it to be unappealing and gross.  Off season is even better.

I decided to share with you my top 5 recipes and the athletes and role models that made me discovered them

Sara is the gorgeous blond in the middle 
My coach, Sara Fennell just place 1st overall at the Toronto Pro Super Show last weekend.  I discovered 2 recipes from her before I even had her as a coach
Carb free bread
Great for the gluten sensitive people 

Taste and has the texture of a bran muffin or looks like pumpernickel bread 

Use a sandwich size tupper ware container but one that has a couple inches of depth because the mixture rises
1 scoop protein powder (vanilla or peanut butter protein work best)
3 tbsp ground flax seed
1 tbsp cinnamon
pinch of ginger
1 tsp baking powder
1 whole egg
3/4 cup water

Mix all dry ingredients, add water mix well, add egg, beat well. microwave for 8 mins, take out flip over microwave for another 3-4 mins. let cool, cut in half, then slice.
I LOVE natural almond butter or Skippy Natural peanut butter and honey...  TO DIE FOR!

Healthy Protein Frappucinno

In magic bullet or blender: (makes 1 shake)
Ice cubes
1/2 cup So Delicious Coconut Milk (unsweetened)
1 scoop protein powder
1 pack stevia
1 tsp coffee grains
1/4 - 1/2 cup water (to fill if using magic bullet)

No need for Starbucks...  you can make your own!

My 3rd recipe is from another role model and inspiration Dominique Matthews.  She competed in Winnipeg for the IFBB qualifier in April.  Dominique is a personal trainer at GO Gym in Granby, Quebec and she is passionate about fitness and training.  She kept talking about her awesome chocolate protein bar.  They are awesome indeed.  I'm at my 3rd batch of the week.  :o)

Chocolate protein bars
2 cup of oatmeal
3 scoops of chocolate protein (whey or isolate)
*optional - 2 tbsp of cocoa 

Mix with 1/2 cup of water

2 tbsp of natural peanut or almond butter
1 hand full of dark chocolate (I use 70% cocoa)

If too dry add a little of water but not too much.  Should be a little dry and sticky

Spread it in a rectangle glass/plastic container lightly covered with oatmeal (so it doesn't stick), cover and put in fridge or freezer.

Cut in bars 
I wrap then in saran wrap, in individual serving
Follow her blog, on the road to the Nationals in August

My 4th recipe is from someone I discovered through Joan MacDonald from Daydreams.  Her name is Michelle MacDonald.  She is a fascinating woman.  She is an athlete, a yoga instructor and a chef...  Her website is filled with awesome recipes, workouts, etc.  She's part of Active Performance Team from the Montreal area.

My favorite recipe is her real mayonnaise... so easy it's almost ridiculous to buy already made...
1 egg
1 teaspoon dijon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 tsp white balsamic vinegar, (or any other "soft" white vinegar like champagne or rice)
1/2 cup cold-pressed, neutral tasting organic oil like grapeseed oil (you may end up using more or less)

Whiz the egg, dijon, juice, vinegar and salt in a blender, and then start to VERY SLOWLY drizzle in the oil. It should be pouring into the blender slowly like a thread of honey! This will allow the oil to be emulsified into the other ingredients. When a little over half the oil has been added the mixture should suddenly start to thicken. At this point you can taste the mayo and adjust the ingredients according to your taste.

I just love it!

The last but not the least is from one very well known fitness inspiration.  She's been published numerous time in Oxygen, Muscle and Fitness Hers...  Jamie Eason

She has a cookie recipe I really like :o)

Low Carb Coconut Macaroons (makes 10)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees
2 egg whites
2 packets Truvia (I replace Truvia by stevia)
1 tbsp Agave Nectar
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
2/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
Add egg whites, Truvia (stevia), and Agave to a medium sized bowl and whisk well.  Add protein powder and shredded coconut and stir until combined.  Use a tbsp to scoop batter onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  Batter will spread out so keep them far apart.  Bake for 22 min.  Voila! 
I didn't put the Nutritional facts because it depends on what ingredients you're using BUT I discovered last week a fantastic tool.  Probably many of you are familiar with myfitnesspal, a very popular iPhone/iPod app.  There's also a website.  If you create a profile or already have one, under the Food tab, recipes...  put in your ingredients and the servings...

Carb free bread

Quaker Oats - One Minute Oatmeal, 2 cup (uncooked)721120120Ico_delete
Six Star (Walmart) - Elite Series Triple Chocolate Whey Protein , 3 Scoop (42g)51024590Ico_delete
Water - Municipal, 0.5 cup (8 fl oz)0000Ico_delete
Tout Natural - Peanut Butter, 2 Tablespoon2006168Ico_delete
Selection - Dark Chocolate Chips, 30 g1602092Ico_delete
Add Ingredient    

Per Serving:1331448
I love it!

Hope you'll enjoy it

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

My ying and my yang...

I mentionned it many time, to keep me balanced I need to workout AND I need to create...   but I'm not selfish.  I am far from saying that I'm perfect at one thing but I am good at a lot of things and I think young people these days spend too much time either in front of their computer or TV.

There is many benefits in creating handmade crafts soothe your senses and help fight stress.  A single piece of craft usually takes several hours to complete.  The teenagers will learn to follow a serie of steps which require them to memorize the process and concentrate on following through.  This is a good way to learn patience and to understand that sometimes, it takes a lot of work to get to a final product. 

Shawl and brooch made by Dolphina :o)
It's funny to see people's face when they see me pull out something I'm knitting...  I certainly don't fit the stereotype and that is what I'm trying to break..  There is also a good feeling of accomplishment when I complete a project.  It's beneficial for self confidence.

I will present about a dozen of workshops, of about 3-4 hours about all kinds of different crafts: hand sewing, machine sewing, knitting, crochet, felting, jewelry making etc. and I think I came up with project with new and recycled material.  I tried to find accessories that could be useful on a daily basis...  Hopefully, it will work and I will be able to pass on my passions.

So June 12, I am meeting with the art and cultural coordinator of the City of Rockland, I keep my fingers crossed...

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Eventfull 48 hrs...

Monday morning I left Ottawa for Prevost, Quebec to meet with my friend Melanie Tremblay, owner of Ora Cosmetiques to discuss the possibilities of a sponsorship and try her facial and body care line.  Getting ready for comp, as you know plays with you water intake, dehydration of the skin.  Speaking for myself, I have very dry skin naturally so it gets worst the closer I get to a show.  Mel made me try the "Traitement minéral" or mineral treatment which is a body scrub made of 27 sea salts and was able to witness instant improvement in my skin texture and applied "Beurre Açaï" which is a moisturizer made of Acai extract and other minerals...  I use to have to put on a ridiculous amount of cream, butter to really hydrate, with this rich butter, a little nut is enough to cover my entire body! And face...  Lait prélift and the Acai de jour...  a skin cleanse + moisturizer are AWESOME not too greasy and I don't feel my face stretch because it's too dry...  I love it!  So I'm glad to be an "Ora" girl!

Then as many of you know, I lost my dear baby puppy Scooby in the street of the South-West part of Montreal for about 4-5 hrs and thank God for social network, because of Facebook I found my dog and made new friend with the nicest lady who looked after Scoob, Nicole Marier.  She told me the nicest thing ever...  "I don't have children but if I have had I would have loved a daughter like you!".  We hit it off right away and I have a new creative friend and a dog angel out there in Montreal...

To top it off, I treated myself with my dear and very talented friend Tamara DiLullo, artist, nail tech and owner of Candy Nail Bar located on St-Hubert corner Bellechasse in Montreal.  Candy Nail has been featured in a number of Canadian Magazines, TV shows  and won many prizes for creativity.  I gave her complete freedom of creativity and she knows I love pink so...  YES I love strawberries...  I was born in the heart of strawberry season and my mom was stirring strawberry jam when she had her 1st contractions ;o)  Isn't that cute?!  I posted the ones she had done for me in December...  it is simply Art on nails!

For an appointment call 514-276-7835

Monday, May 14, 2012

Every morning...

Well, 1st HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to all the mom out there!

I'm not a "real" mom and will probably never be but a little bit then a year ago, I picked up a little fury creature that would change my life for ever.  I'd say I'm the mother of a fury little shy ball of affection.  He use to go to doggie day care, no he goes and run with bigger guys.  He's got slack more then he's got rules, he's a "velcro" dog, a sucker for attention and he's healthy, fit and full of energy!

I'll be honest...  I've been waking up at 4:30AM for over 5 months.  At first, like anything else, it wasn't easy.  But now if I wake up later then 5, I feel lazy so it's part of my weekly routine.  Not always easy but...  motivated or not, disciplined or not, cold or not, Scooby doesn't care.  He needs to go outside...  and he keeps mommy going, rain or shine, 35 or -35!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Looking for motivation and hardcore stuff...

I love food (can't hide it!) and it's a love-hate relationship since I was born...  So sticking to a diet and training is hard everyday but Oh! so worth it.  Since show, I've been indulging...  indulging a lot!  Today is the day the muscle building plan start for the fall.  I need it, I need that structure and those goals to keep me going...  That's the way it is...

Besides my local inspirations Sara (my dear coach), Emily Stirling,
Jenny Beland...  On the national level, DLB is the one!

Hopefully, by the time I get ready for show, I'll be able to do this:
5 for 5 for 25!