A Chapter Ends

Hey there,

So, this is the end of one chapter of my life. When I was a day away from turning 25 years old, I signed the offer to my first house. At 25, I moved in (and two days later was rushed to the hospital for an emergency kidney stone operation). At 30, today, I’ve moved out.

Was it sad? No.
Was it hard to let go of? No.
Do I miss my house? Not at all.
Was it weird? Absolutely! – Seeing my house empty like the day I moved in was a surreal experience. But I was truly ready to let this house go, so moving on so abruptly was not a difficult decision for me. This house was a smorgasbord of collected items and books and dust collectors; I’m glad that when I do decide to move again, I get to start fresh.

I’m currently staying in the “basement apartment” of my parents’ gorgeous house in Grimsby before my move to Paris in 9 days. I’m truly content with the fact that I don’t have to worry about moving and packing at my house anymore, and can now (sort of) relax and enjoy my last days with family and friends as I start wrapping things up for the move. The featured image for this post is my cat Amelia Pond warming up to my (her) new bed. And nothing about being 30 and moving back in with my parents is weird for me because their eagerness to take me back in (and watch my babies) is what is giving me the opportunity to live out my dreams. I am so grateful for that chance; too many people live a life full of regrets and I will be able to say I lived out my dream. Sure, it is different, but it’s still home.

In other news, I’ve been paired with my first family for Paris (a second one is awaiting a formal meeting as they are on holidays) and I’m thrilled! They seem so wonderful and I’m eager to begin teaching their children. The cool thing is that my training for the private English company I’m working for is on a boat on the Seine! And the training period is followed by a lunch on the boat — so cool!

Another exciting part of my life is that I’ve been hired for my first paid writing gig. If you’re a writer, you understand what a BIG deal this is! Getting paid to write for companies is a difficult task, and while it isn’t a hefty penny, it’s a whole lot of experience and I’m thrilled to see where it takes me. Once I start writing for them (next week, presumably), I’ll link you to my work via lifeofcloud.net, so keep an eye out! I truly can’t wait to be forced to write and get my creative juices flowing, to write about things I’m passionate about, and gain experience for future work. Wahoo!

I am also beginning another course for my Masters program in September, and I dreamt up (literally woke up from a dream and had to write it down) an idea for my first published work (it isn’t poetry) and I’m excited to start writing that book and putting it all together.

Needless to say, life will be busy but inspiring, as how can it not be when I’m living in the City of Lights?

I hope to write again before I leave. Till then, bon soir and thanks for reading!
Anything you wish me to write about? Now, while in Paris, whenever? Leave me a note in the comments!



Hey there,

Only 1.5 months are left in the school year.
Only 3.5 months are left until I’m in Paris. The only downside to this number is that once I realize how quickly time flies from here till then, I’ll be given a clear understanding of how 3.5 months in Paris are sure to fly by, as well.

My partner is coming with me, now.
Well, he’s coming for the last month and a half. Unless you apply for a VISA you can’t go for more than 3 months. He’ll also be finishing his work season (labourer), and I think it’s important for me to have two months in my city, my home, to myself, to really get a feel for the experience, to really understand it as a home and not a dream.

My house sold in two days.
I had 25+ viewings and 4 offers (bidding war) and got far over asking for it, which was a welcome surprise, and a relief, as no one likes to keep on top of obsessive cleaning and pulling the dogs out for viewings. This sale made the dream even more real.

A lot of people have asked me why I’m selling for only 3.5 months, but the intention is to go to Paris and “feel out” the dream. From there, I will decide where to take myself. I’m okay with letting go of this house because I’ve had it for five years and I was ready to move on from it. It served its purpose in my life. I was looking for something else, something the felt more like home. Letting go of this house was part of the journey.

I found this sentence in an incomplete blog post draft from September 2016 and I can’t help but laugh at it now, and I wish I could go back in time and tell myself, “Have faith.”
“I’m sometimes asked, if Paris is such a necessity and certainty for me, why I’m holding back from just packing up my things and going for good.”

There are still things that “hold me back” from doing just that, but I have come to realize that they will not hold me back from testing the waters. I understand the realism of the challenges brought about by this dream, but I have found a way to work around them and work with them. It’s all coming together.

In other news: I’m taking a social media break because keeping up with it was overwhelming and life-sucking. I’m reading more because of this break.

Also, I’m exhausted and work has reached the point where I’m dragging my feet and kids are losing interest (it’s the weather). I’m so, so tired, all the time. It makes it hard to pack, which I know I’ll regret stalling as we inch closer to August.

Sorry for how scattered this post is. I got little sleep and I’ve got lots on my mind. You know how it is…


Aspiring Writer Dilemmas

Hey there,

I’m not a writer. Well, what I mean is that I love to write but I’m by no means a professional at it. But I have always hoped and dream that one day I could turn my passion for writing into a career. So today, using a workbook to kick-start novel writing, I planned my novel.

I planned everything from the characters to their specific profiles – including what drives them – to how they will relate to one another in the novel. I planned my prologue and I wrote out a whole plot point layout for the struggles my protagonist will face (which basically gave me a timeline of how my novel will play out). I wrote down all the ideas for the issues in this world, the setting, the environment within this setting, the years, dates,  laws, etc. And I finished all that planning and thought, “Yeah, this could be a pretty cool YA novel…”

Then I thought about books like Harry Potter and I thought about books like Lord of the Rings or Chronicles of Narnia and I thought to myself, is the world I just made up truly the world I want to invest my time into? It could be cool, it could become a trilogy, it could develop into something important, but it doesn’t evoke any of the same feelings that those novels I just mentioned evoke in readers.

But then I got to thinking, is that what writers do? Compare themselves to one another without giving their own ideas a chance, first? Beat themselves up before they’ve even fully created something? Criticize something they haven’t even really started?

Reading and writing has always been my escape. I don’t want to turn it into an opportunity to criticize myself or judge myself or put myself down. I will just write, and if something comes from it, good, if nothing comes from it, I’ll keep writing.


FriYay Musings

Hello friends,

I’m going to avoid discussing my crummy sleep and instead tell you about this outstanding book I’m reading, and some good news I wish to share.

I started ‘Leave Your Mark’ yesterday morning, and had few opportunities to read (recess, lunch, reading period) but am already halfway through. It’s immensely inspiring! The intentions are to take your life by the horns and make it your own, but make it as successful as possible.

You might be asking me why I would read a book on careers when I already have a successful career, especially one that speaks to internships and promotions (teachers don’t ask for promotions; salary increases happen over time) and the answer is simple: I want to succeed in all aspects of my life.

I am an active participant in making my passions more than simply something I do on my spare time. As made evident by the fact that I am a Feminist Apparel ambassador (use promo code CLAUDIA10 for 10% off), I like to turn my interests and passions into something that I, others, or even my pockets can benefit from. I even ran a  Tarot Reading company for a while as a side job last summer, and I was very successful through self-promotion of myself and my website (I only stopped this because it was immensely time consuming and emotionally and spiritually draining). This book basically assists you in being successful in those passions, eventually turning them into careers.

The writer, Aliza Licht, was a MED student looking to go into Plastic Surgery as a career. She had a full scholarship and loved her internship at the clinic, but it was upon going home emotionally and physically exhausted that she realized she wasn’t truly happy. She couldn’t make a career out of something that, despite being able to pay her well and knowing she would be excellent at it, wouldn’t fulfill her fully and completely. So she went into fashion, starting with internships and eventually moving her way up.

Her switch from a set career path to following her heart is immensely brave and truly inspiring. I don’t have the guts to move forward with a change like that without knowing I would have a comfortable salary to back it up and support the life I live now. She still  lived at home when she made the change, so things were a little bit more simple for her, but her advice, her tips for success, and her stories and examples, are all valuable, nonetheless. I’m excited to make my way through this book!

In other really wicked news, I got a surprise Direct Message through Instagram from Sherway Gardens which is, without any question, my most favourite mall. In it, I was told that the person running the IG for Sherway “love[s my] feed” and they’re gifting me a $100 CF SHOP! gift card as a surprise gift!

WHAT?! That happens in real life?! It’s like I just won the lottery! Not only do I now have an excuse to go shopping, but I also have $100 off whatever I plan to buy! I plan to write about my little “shopping excursion” in this blog, and post some Snapchat style Instagram videos about the trip (along with photos, of course).

I’m debating between a lovely crossbody bag and Chanel perfume (which I’ve wanted for a while now), but my course could change once I’m actually at Sherway.

AND to top off the good news, Chapters gave me a top-up of my Plum Points, moving me from $10 off to $20 off, which means I finally had a reasonable excuse to buy the Vogue Paris F/W Collection Magazine…

AND!! Did you notice? I finally bought my own domain name!





Hello friends,

An author once told me that if I want to be a writer, I need to write what I know, and to write something that I would love to read.

Well, I know Paris, and I know books. And reading about either of those things would definitely soothe my soul. And I know myself pretty well, also…

And so, I have begun to write a short story. I’m going to share the first chapter, here (please note, it has not been proofread or edited, and my novella – of sorts – doesn’t even have a name, yet):

Chapter One

There was nothing too exceptional about her. She was pretty, sure, but she wasn’t one to turn heads in a room. There was no doubt that she was an intelligent woman, but her strengths resided in her writing rather than her verbal skills. And she was rather friendly, someone who fit easily into a crowd, but anyone who knew her well enough understood her to be an introvert who got really uncomfortable if that façade went on for too long. Overall, she was pretty plain, apart from her name; her name was Nives.

Nives felt most at home in a comfortable chair with a warm drink (preferably a coffee with just a little milk) and a good book. Books felt like family to her; they took up the most space in her house, usually creating quite a clutter, and lending them out to people always made her a little sick to her stomach. Being witness to someone who would fold back the covers of their books, or ever allow their novels to be in anything but pristine condition, always seemed like abuse to her. How could one treat an object that opens up so many worlds, which reaches into the depths of a person, with anything but the upmost respect? The idea was beyond her.

Then again, many ideas were beyond this odd, plain woman. Why would anyone need to get married in this day and age? Why would anyone choose to reproduce, for anything other than selfish reasons? Why is feminism such a difficult concept to comprehend? Why do people eat meat? Why are there animals who are homeless, in this world? Do people not realize that the solution to every problem is: coffee and a good book? These questions and many like them often plagued her.  That is, until she was alone with coffee and a good book.

But there was one question, one idea, that never seemed to leave her mind, no matter how much she tried to distract herself from it with her personal escape; that a city like Paris exists, and that anyone would choose to live anywhere other than Paris, France.

Thoughts? Please let me know in the comments!