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Archive for the ‘Work – Life Balance’ Category

Wow…. I just can’t believe I haven’t blogged since 2010! I just wish I could start this blog post as though all this time hadn’t gone by, pretending we were in the middle of a conversation… But my life has changed so much in these few months, so much I can’t even wrap my mind around it…

And here is what rocked my world:

She is now 7 months old and the most smiley baby I have ever seen. Her Papa calls her Froggie and she loves to play and explore. The first 6 months were not easy, I won’t lie. The sleep deprivation was brutal, especially after I had to go back to work. But she started sleeping through the night a couple weeks ago and we couldn’t be happier.

In 2012, I look forward to playing with her and seeing life through her eyes, watching her grow and learn. I also would love to find a better balance between baby, marriage and work. I’ll need to take better care of myself, be healthier to have more energy and be the happiest parent I can be for my little girl. I hope that blogging again will help me take the time to reflect on the joys of my life and to make sensible decisions for our future.

So I guess I am back, hopefully for good….

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Sorry I’ve been away for so long. This past couple of month has been really crazy for many reasons:

1) I had 2 poster presentations to prepare for the American Academy of Neurology meeting I was attending. And I undertook a MAJOR project 2 weeks before the meeting that I absolutely wanted to present. So I ended up working every night after work (and weekends) on my research project. This left me seriously sleep deprived but totally psyched about the new results of my research!

2) Although the meeting was great, being stuck in Toronto for 5 days (thanks, Volcano) not knowing when I would be able to fly home was NO fun! After 3 weeks of arduous work, I was really looking forward to being able to spend some quality time with the hubby…

3) But after my return,  I still had 2 more conferences with one poster and one oral talk to prepare . Ahhh…..Work Work Work…..

4) Major Bummer:  I haven’t blogged in over a month! Not that I haven’t had any blog material. But life just gets in the way….

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But I know that dwelling on the bad times wont get me anywhere and I am determined to see the bright side of life. In spite of everything I just mentionned I’ve had some pretty rocking moments too. Here is a little overview of what has made my heart smile over the past few weeks….

1) Niagara Falls:


I was at first pretty disappointed to discover that there was a city around the falls. I had imagined something pretty wild and remote. Not a big city with lots of tall hotel buildings overlooking the falls. But taking the boat to get a closer look at the roaring waters was just amazing!  Was also a great way to spend time with my coworkers and get our minds off work!

2) Reading a book at Starbucks!

Oh… that felt soooo goood….. I hadn’t given much time to reading but while I was in Toronto, I decided to take a morning off to go to a local bookstore, sit with a Soy Latte and read. I was so lucky to find the perfect book for my lazy morning: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin! It is such a fantastic source of discussions, quotations and thoughts on this very tricky question: Is it possible to become a happier person? Like Rubin, I am not an unhappy person, I haven’t experienced traumatizing catastrophes, I have a good job, a lovely husband and I live in a beautiful city. But I have always believed that little changes in my attitude or my outlook on life could make me a happier person. This is not a self help book but through her experience, Rubin has helped me find some little ways to make my life more enjoyable and overall more fun! I loved her openness, especially when talking about her relationship to her husband.

I highly recommand this book!

Especially with my new adorable bookmark! I couldn’t resist….

3) AirFrance!

Spending time in Toronto was fun but I was so frustrated to miss time with the Hubby while we were stuck there. After 5 days, my group finally flew to NYC, hoping to get on a NYC-Toulouse flight (the Paris Airport was still closed at the time and southern French airports had just reopened).

I was just so so glad to get in that airplane! Especially when the announced that the Paris airport had finally reopened and our flight was redirected to Paris.

More than 2000 people were waiting at the AirFrance checkin area. Almost all of them were able to go home that night! It was such a relief!

4) Driver’s license!!!!!!!

Yep! I finally did it! Passing the stupid driving test wasn’t easy! The success rate is about 40% (so different from America, huh?) but I did it! I did it!!!! It is such a relief for me … and my bank account (learning to drive in France usually costs around 2000 euros, and even more if you have to take the driving test several times!). So glad it is over!

I even got to drive my sister’s Smart car (the “A” in the back is my mandatory “young driver” sign):

Oh so cool…. The hubby and I are even thinking of buying me a car! I’m so thrilled!

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Well I think it is time to end this crazy long post! I’ll be back with more news later this week!

‘Night yall!


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Pumped!

Feeling pumped today and I have to say a little sore!

I have to confess that despite my New Years resolution, I haven’t done very well on the fitness side…. Still lifted weights about 1-2 times a week but nothing more. And I really feel that my cardio-vascular fitness is not what it used to be. I recently came to realize that I needed to change my attitude towards exercise and make it fit in my busy schedule, make it a priority. Very often, I would feel too tired or, I guess, lazy to go to the gym, hop on the treadmill or lift after my workday. But when I would finally make it the gym I would always have a great time. I just need something to motivate me to go there! So I just thought back to when I started exercising 3 years ago, and what made me love it so much was group classes. I did everything: body sculpt, body attack, body pump, step, abs classes…..  And it was so much fun! So I thought I should try that again and last night I went to a late Body Pump class at my local gym. And it was everything I needed: energizing and challenging!

When I returned home I was craving veggies but I didn’t have much on hand! Luckily I found some frozen organic spinach in my freezer and quickly came up with a soup idea!

Spinach goat cheese soup:

In a medium pan, I cooked about 1 pound of spinach, 4-5 Tbsp of fresh goat cheese, 2 large cloves of garlic, 1 cup of low fat half and half, and enough water to obtain the desired consistency. Then I puréed the soup with a hand held blender. Seasoned with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper. Yummy!

Served the soup with MORE fresh goat cheese (I never have enough!) and Pain Rustique from our favorite bakery! I don’t know about you but I love my goat cheese toped with fresh ground black pepper….

I also had a green cup to match my soup!

I ended up stuffing myself silly with that soup and was quite full when i went to bed!

I woke up hungry though and was ready for one of my favorite breakfasts: Oat Bran with banana and muesli!

And yes, it is as easy as it sounds: 1/2 oat bran cooked with fat free milk, toped with half a banana and 2 Tbsp of raisin/apple musli. Simple and delicious: a great way to start the day!

Tell me more about you: do you prefer group classes or do you workout on your own? What motivates you to exercise?

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