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Filtering by Category: personal

The end.

Miss Leatherpants

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So the title might be a bit dramatic (I should probably say 'a new beginning' or something), but this will be my last post on Miss Leatherpants. So technically it is an end to something ;)

A lot has changed since I started this blog. Back then it was my creative outlet, a place where I could share my interests, my style, my thoughts. I still lived in the Netherlands and was working a job that I didn't like. I thought fashion, styling and interior was something I would want to do professionally, so this was what I was aiming for. 

But then I changed jobs and we moved to Canada. Still something was missing (career wise, I can't complain about the other parts of my life) and I couldn't figure out what it was. It still took me 1,5 years to finally take the step to start working with a coach. Those 1,5 years consisted of me feeling great and feeling like I figured everything out and the next day I was still back at zero or even -10, I was stuck on a mindset like "I'm only getting older and I haven't even achieved anything". 

But the coaching really did help. I was sceptical at first, but in only 4 months I finally feel that I'm actually taking steps forward. Forward to pursuing my values in life. It turns out, my Master in Laws (Health Law) wasn't a mistake, it was one of the decisions I really made according to my values. However, I've graduated a long time ago and moved continents so I don't want to pursue the whole law thing. What really attracted me in the first place was helping people, stick up for those who couldn't do it for themselves or just simply make ones day just a little better. So a couple of sessions into my coaching, I knew this was it. I want to become a coach. Help others feel better about themselves and help them create the life they really want. Make sure they're living according to their values and help them believe in themselves more. So that they can live their best life. 

Don't get me wrong, I still love being creative with fashion, interior styling and photography, but at this point in my life it's more like a hobby to me. 

So no more Miss Leatherpants, just Lara...
Oh, and if you might be looking for a coach, let me know. It would be my pleasure to start working with you! 

Thank you all for following along!

With Love,
Lara

It's been a while

Miss Leatherpants

 Patent skirt from  MOSS COPENHAGEN ; Shirt from  Uniqlo

Patent skirt from MOSS COPENHAGEN; Shirt from Uniqlo

So I'm guessing you totally forgot about me and my blog right?! I totally did. Or well, I didn't forget, but I just didn't feel like writing anymore. I even thought about quitting entirely. I haven't been feeling that great and inspired lately. So I just behaved like an ostrich... head in the sand and ignore everything around it and especially ignore my own feelings. But I guess here I am again, for now ;)

So just a little update. I do love to write, to create and take photos, but lately I was having a hard time to find my thing again. And I know this isn't the first time I shared this with you, but somehow I just can't find my way out of this circle of feeling uninspired, down and not knowing what I want from life to feeling I've figured it out and this time I'll definitely get shit done. And that indeed works for a while, but then there is this voice in my head again, telling me I'm a failure and who am I to pursue this and that, while there are so many other people out there who can do it better. And I'm so done with this feeling. I mean, I'm almost 30 years old, now will probably a good time to say farewell to all the insecurities right?!

And it's not that I don't know what to do, in theory I know it all and I can give the best advise, but in the end you have to practice what you preach, and that my lovelies, is where it goes wrong. I just crawl back into my shell, stay at home, don't meet any people en thus feel like I can't create, because of course I'm not getting inspired... You see, circle? But I slowly started to make some changes, into my work and my work schedule, into me dressing up again (this is also a lot easier now it's not -30 anymore) and we also moved into a new apartment, which I really love. There is a lot of light in the living room and the garden room (yes we have a garden now), so I enjoy waking up here. 

But it's time to take it to the next level and actually start doing something with all the ideas I have in my head. I started with writing my ideas and some thoughts down on paper, I've created to-do lists and I've set mini goals. So I'm getting there. And I just have to deal with the fact that the voice will turn up again, but I just need to not let it consume me. 

As I mentioned before, this is not the first time I'm sharing these kind of things, and although it feels I'm just stuck and talking about the same thing over and over again, I have to admit I'm not. I might not have figured it out entirely, but I'm getting closer. All these other times have helped me grow and are helping me to really fight for figuring this out. 

Also one thing that I'm doing more lately, besides forever styling my interior differently and taking photos of it, is cooking and baking. I just love to create things and then take photos of it. So to not leave with all the heavy stuff, I will share this recipe for a quick and easy but uplifting lunch with you that I made the other day. I got this recipe from Jessica Merchant from The Feed Feed and it was just too delicious not to share. So here it is:

Blood orange, ricotta & honey toast. 
What you'll need:
- 2 slices (or more, depending on how hungry you are) bread of choice
- 1 cup of ricotta
- 2 blood oranges, peeled and the middle removed. 
- honey

So it's really easy, just toast the bread, put the ricotta on top of it (you can season it with a bit of salt and pepper), then put the sliced blood oranges on top of that and drizzle some honey over it. And it's done! 

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So I do hope you'll kind of stick with me and that you might even share your story. Also I do hope you'll enjoy this delicious and quick lunch someday!

With love,
Lara

City-hopping: Toronto diary

Miss Leatherpants

Maybe a bit overdue, since I visited Toronto at the beginning of last month, but I still wanted to share my thoughts about this city and show you how I spent my days!

I will dive right in: I LOVE Toronto! I remember texting Gordon a couple of times saying that I really would love to move there :P  Don't get me wrong, Ottawa is a nice city and I think it's a great place to start when moving to Canada. The people are so friendly and it's actually a pretty nice city to live in (winters are way too long though, but in summertime everything is different), but it's pretty small and what I miss most in this city are cool concept-stores, little boutiques, hip coffee places where you can just sit down, do some work, chill and hang out with friends, and a real city-vibe. So when my friend asked me to come along on her work-trip to Toronto, I jumped at the opportunity to have a girls-weekend and do some exploring of the city. 

We went from Wednesday until Sunday, my friend went by plane and I went by train. It's pretty easy and comfortable to travel from Ottawa to Toronto by train. Also, because there's pretty decent WIFI, I could put in a full 4-hours of work (one-way takes 4,5 hours). Since my friend had to work, I could go out exploring on Thursday and Friday by my own. When I arrived I immediately felt the vibe of a big city and felt creative ideas flowing in. 

My first stop was Quantum Coffee, also because it was located right around the corner of both the office of my friend and our Airbnb. I think it's an incredible space, it's pretty big and not cramped with tables or anything. I just loved the design of this place, in the front they had some window seats where you could work, on the left is where the magic happens (where they make the coffee) and on the right you have the counter where you have to order and can pick some delicious pastries. In the back, you have to get up a few steps, there is this whole other room with comfortable sofa's and chairs with tables, where you can read a book or catch up with friends (it's a no-laptop zone). I sat in the front while working for a bit and enjoying a good cup of coffee and a pastry, of course ;)
In the evening, after settling into our Airbnb which was pretty awesome since it was located on the 35th floor from which you had an amazing view and could oversee the city and have a glimpse of lake Ontario, we went for some sushi at JaBistro. It's an awesome place, nothing you would expect from the outside and the sushi was amazing! The interior is pretty minimal, but so cosy with brick walls, a lot of wood-tones and natural materials. We chose a selection of the blowtorched sushi, just delicious! 

 Quantum Coffee

Quantum Coffee

 Quantum Coffee

Quantum Coffee

On Thursday I decided to take in some art and went to the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO). I was lucky and was able to join a guided tour that was about to start. The guide took us to all the different parts of the museum and showed us some of the highlights while explaining a bit more about the artist intentions and/or meaning behind a piece of art. So interesting, this way it's not only your take of some of the art. I really loved the contemporary art section and the indigenous pieces. The gallery itself is pretty great, with parts where the lighting falls in perfectly. After the gallery I walked more down town and made a coffee stop at Dineen Coffee. It was soo busy, but what a great place, that floor alone is definitely worth a visit! Then I did a bit of shopping and walked back to the Airbnb. It was already time for dinner. I met up with some friends and we had dinner at a Thai restaurant, called Pai. Delicious and authentic food! And no, the evening wasn't over yet, we had to get an after-dinner drink. Our friend took us to this awesome, a bit underground, cocktail place... BarChef! Apparently they're famous for their molecular cocktails, they looked great, but were really pricey. So cheap-ass as I am, I just opted for a regular and better priced one. That one was delicious too though. But we couldn't leave before we also had some sort of mojito, but all put in one tiny ball with a bit of foam. It really was an explosive of flavours and you really have to try it if you're there. Such a cool experience. 

 Art Gallery of Ontario

Art Gallery of Ontario

 Art Gallery of Ontario - one of my favourite pieces

Art Gallery of Ontario - one of my favourite pieces

 Art Gallery of Ontario - one of my favourite pieces

Art Gallery of Ontario - one of my favourite pieces

The Friday I spent going from coffee place to coffee place. I started at RSquared Cafe which is a pretty good place to get some work done. They have enough tables and power outlets and nobody will bother you for some more drinks or something. I decided to get a pink latte, I'm a girl after all :P, and a plain croissant. After this I walked a bit, but it was actually too cold to walk a lot, so I popped into Nadège Patisserie and treated myself to some macarons and a tea. The macarons were delicious!! Really worth a visit if you're in the neighbourhood. Also, the sandwiches looked delicious too, I just think you can't go wrong with anything there. The interior of the shop was just my style. Very minimal, white and big windows, what's not to love right?! After I warmed up a bit I walked back to the Airbnb with a stop at Her Majesty's Pleasure. It's actually a café and beauty bar in one, which I didn't know before I walked in. It just looked so beautiful, it has floor to ceiling windows and black and white interior with lots of marble. Even though it was very cold that day, the sun wasn't shy so once settled inside you got warmed up by the sun. I could've stayed there all afternoon, but it was already time for dinner. That evening my friend and I went to Gusto 101 for some nice Italian food. It's  a cool space, more like a container building, very industrial and pretty dark with an open kitchen and a separate bar section. 

 RSquared Cafe

RSquared Cafe

 Nadège Patisserie

Nadège Patisserie

 Her Majesty's Pleasure

Her Majesty's Pleasure

On Saturday we met up with a friend for breakfast/brunch at Swan by Rose and Sons. It's a diner with booths to sit in. Pretty cool, since we don't have anything like this in The Netherlands. I had some avocado toast with egg, so delicious. One thing I really love about Canada is their brunch traditions. After this we got a coffee to go at Sam James Coffee Bar and did some shopping and walking. We went into this really lovely concept-store, with lots of plants, coffee-stuff, books, blankets, journals and more, it's called the Old Faithful Shop. The interior of the shop was also awesome. Of course I had to buy something here! For that evening we've made a reservation at Oretta, a new (Italian) restaurant in town and already famous for their Instagrammable interior. It's quiet something let me tell you, but since it was pretty dark and I was to lazy to carry my camera, I wasn't able to take some good photos (I know... sorry guys, next time I promise). The food and cocktails were delicious! Definitely worth a visit!

 Sam James Coffee Bar

Sam James Coffee Bar

 Sam James Coffee Bar

Sam James Coffee Bar

 Old Faithful Shop

Old Faithful Shop

On Sunday it was already time to leave and it kind of hurt a bit to leave this awesome city behind and return to Ottawa. It's just that Toronto has a lot of awesome little boutiques and some concept stores like I know from in The Netherlands / Europe. It was just so good to walk around in normal shoes (since there wasn't any snow) and be able to have a coffee at another awesome coffee place. The city is just so vibrant and big, but also not too big, it's pretty good to navigate (yes coming from me, queen of navigation disaster). Even though I've never visited New York City, hopefully I will this year, Toronto had this NYC-vibe (or at least how I imagine it to be from watching movies :P). So if you're planning a trip to Canada, you should definitely visit Toronto! 

I know I'll definitely visit Toronto again, hopefully very soon, so if you have any tips on where to go next time, please let me know!

With love,
Lara