Letter From Olivia: We Hit the Motherload!

Hello Lovely,

May is such a huge month, I just might be in over my head! We've got Cinco de Mayo, Mother's Day and a brand new project! A lot of people don't know that Cinco de Mayo—or the fifth of May—commemorates the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867) and should not be confused with Mexican independence, which was declared more than 50 years before the Battle of Puebla.  This victory is celebrated worldwide every year so I've got you covered for great party games and ideas including a super fun printable trivia game that'll be really interesting to play if you're drunk.

May is a huge time to celebrate moms and mom-like figures in our lives so I'll share lots of tips for making Mother's Day special whether you're spoiling mum or you're a mother yourself.

In addition to celebrating mum, this month Life By Olivia is launching a photo-a-day challenge! I've wanted to do this for years but never really found one I actually liked, so I decided to make one. Photo-a-day challenges have been common in the Instagram community for years and we would love for you to join in the fun! This is a great way to get out your cameras and to get creative while recording moments from your every day lives!

What is exactly is photo-a-day you say?

Every month I share with you some photo prompts or suggestions for each day of the month.  You can play along by taking a picture of your interpretation of the prompt (or come up with your own if you don’t like it).

How do I play along?

You can share your photos through any of the social media platforms: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, your Blog, Flickr, etc.

You can tag me @life_by_olivia on your social media sites too if you want me to be able to see it!  I love to see what my readers are sharing!  It makes my day!

Simply add the hashtag #anewlens or #lifebyolivia so that the rest of us who are playing can follow along and we can all see your photos.

What is a hashtag and how does it work?

A hashtag is the pound sign (#) followed by a word of short phrase (without a space) that describes or classifies your tweet or photo on Twitter or Instagram.  If you click on a hashtag you will be taken to a list of tweets or pictures all containing the same hashtag.

How can I see other people’s photos?

Once you’ve shared your own photo, and included the hashtag #anewlens or #lifebyolivia, simply click on the the hashtag.  You will be taken to a screen with everyone’s photos who have also added #anewlens or #lifebyolivia hashtag.  Go ahead and comment and like each other’s photos.  This way everyone has fun!

What if you forget a day…or 2…or 20?

Not a big deal…really! Just start up again.  You can play catch up, or just start again.  No one will care…I promise. Share with your friends and family!  Have fun.  The point is to challenge you to find the beauty in everyday moments we usually take for granted..

But remember…Life By Olivia is a family friendly site!  Let’s keep it that way people!

Feel free to look at our past Mother's Day ideas to get a headstart on planning this special day:

Letter From Olivia: Easter Entertaining

Hello Lovely,

Where is the year going? I feel like we were justcelebrating Valentine’s Day and now we’re getting ready for Easter already! I’m definitely going to need summer to last a bit longer though. Before time runs out on us, here is what you can expect this month, from Life By Olivia.

We’re kicking off the month witha new series called, “Breakfast Week”. For the first week, we are sharing4 great new breakfast items to fuel your Spring Transformations. Then we’re looking at budget-friendly ways to give your home a facelift.

Spring is a time to come together with friends and family; it’s not too cold, it’s not too hot, so no excuses. Friends and family come home for spring break and it’s time to celebrate. So we’re offering tips and recipes for the perfect Spring soiree (including some from my own)!

We’ll help you to clean up and clear out for expected guests and offer great DIY’s for clear, glowing skin!

We’ve got live events and a new project in the works! The project won’t be revealed until May so you’ll just have to check in every day for clues and hints on what we’re up to! *HINT* There’s a major clue in the magazine!

We can’t wait to show you all of the amazing things we have planned for this month. This month’s magazine has 6 great new recipes for you, 1 cool beauty treatments that is super easy to make and use and lots more great tips and secrets.

As always, we hope that you are inspired this month to try something new in the kitchen and around your home. Thank you so much for supporting and subscribing to the Life By Olivia E Magazine.


Letter From Olivia - March Madness


Hello Lovely,

March is upon us and I know this can bring up a lot of mixed feelings. It could be met with dread if you live in a destination city because of wild Spring Breakers; but if you’re a basketball fan, this is your month to shine! That’s why this month’s theme is called March Madness; it’s about to get Cray Cray in here!

For the next two weeks, it’s all about St. Patrick’s Day here on the blog. That’s right, we’re turning into leprechauns! I mean, what’s not to love about rainbows and beer? Am I right? But we don’t want to leave you basketball fanatics (and basketball wives) out. So we’re whipping up some fun basketball themed recipes to serve while you root for your favourite teams.

And that’s not all! March also signals the beginning of Spring. What could you possibly not love about Spring? Flowers are in bloom and for us, it’s already 80-degree weather (not like it ever really went away). So get ready to put on your brightest colours and put away the animal print. (I’ve got a mint green sweater that I’ve been dying to wear since last September). You don’t want to miss all of the Spring themed posts coming your way including much more DIYs! Whether it’s Spring cleaning, spring tablescapes or the usual Spring-themed recipe, Life By Olivia is going to keep you fit, full and cherry this Spring season!


Letter From Olivia: Fall in Love February

Hello Lovely,

February is a very special time of year for many reasons.. It’s undoubtedly the most romantic season with cozy sweater weather, making it the perfect time to let your heart guide you. And if Valentine’s Day isn’t your thing, there’s still reason to celebrate, because it’s my birth month! That’s right, I was born on February 19, making me both an Aquarius and Pisces (for all the horoscope lovers out there). This year I will be turn 27. I don’t feel anything special about this age, but another year alive is a great reason to celebrate!

That said, you can look forward to plenty of posts about love on LifeByOlivia.net this month. Here’s what we have in store…

For all you crafty ladies and gents out there, we have Valentine’s Day DIYs galore. From the usual V-Day themed recipes to gift ideas, and a few last minute workout ideas to stay or get in shape for Valentine’s Day. We’ll even share a few tips on how throw your own “Galentine’s” event for you and your girls if you’re single this year.

Our Instagram page is going through a rebranding process as well so keep an eye out for those changes coming soon.

We can’t wait to show you all of the amazing things we have planned for this month. If you haven't already, subscribe so that you can receive the first Life By Olivia E Magazine. We’ve got 9 great new recipes for you, 3 cool printables that are super easy to use and a bonus DIY Beauty Treatment to keep you fresh while you’re on the go.

We hope that you are inspired this month to try something new in the kitchen and in the bedroom. After all, the way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach!

Hello January

Hello 2017!

Can we all agree that 2016 SUCKED?!I mean seriously, Trump, Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds, George Michael, Prince? Even Drake finally moved on from Rihanna and hooked up with J-Lo. Like WTF 2016? Going into the end of the year, I was so eager to look at all the positive things that happened over the year, which was made easier by my positive jar. Remember in the beginning of the year when I encouraged everyone to write down positive moments as they happened on sticky notes and put them in a jar to read on New Year's Eve? I went through three different jars because I kept running out of space. It's a great practice, and if you didn't get to do it last year, I would recommend you trying it this year.

So, what are we doing this year on Life by Olivia? I'm so glad you asked! We're sticking to our Monday-Friday schedule for blog posts with more activity on the Facebook page including weekends to keep you inspired all week long. We'll be bringing more workout guides including my personal weight loss journey. You can expect much more DIY projects and tutorials, including DIY beauty treatments. We even have a new project we're working on to bring you guys free online workshops, all leading up to Meet Ups later this year! Of course, you can always expect great healthy, guilt-free recipes all year long.

This year is going to be great, but it’s you guys that make it so awesome! What kinds of posts are you looking forward to this year? Is there anything you want to see more of, maybe even less of? Let us know in the comment section below!

Letter From Olivia: Give Thanks November

Hello Lovely,

Can you believe that Fall is almost over? It seems like only yesterday I was swapping out flip flops for boots. We’ve enjoyed a wonderful chill front these past two weeks (wasn’t quite a cold front, but at least we weren’t subjected to 85 degree and up weather). I love cold weather and often joke that I was probably born in the wrong country because I cannot tolerate heat. But no matter what, I will always be grateful for my home.

Isn’t that what November is for? Taking time out to remember and give thanks for the little things in life we often take for granted? Well that’s what you can expect from us at Life By Olivia this month. All month long, we are going to share things we are grateful for, big and small. You can expect more quick tips on the Facebook Page from Mechelle.  We’re also going to share ways you can show your gratitude with free recipes, crafts and printables to help you celebrate the holidays in style. Afraid you’ll indulge too much at Thanksgiving dinner? Don’t worry, we’re also sharing fitness tips that you can do anytime, anywhere all month long, starting next week.

Last but not least, this month we are sharing our gratitude for you the readers. I’ve been putting together an eBook of my favourite recipes, some of which you’ve never seen before, called Sweets & Sips to be released on Friday November 18, 2016. These recipes are sure to impress while you indulge. AND if you sign up right now to pre-request our FREE eBook, we are going to send you a FREE copy of our Thanksgiving Wine Bottle Labels for you to jazz up your bottle at your next dinner. Don’t be scared if you start to see Christmas stuff towards the end of month. We’re really excited for Christmas! I can’t wait to show you all of the festive things that are in store for the rest of the month.

What would you love to see on LifeByOlivia.net in November?

Let me know your thoughts and ideas in the comments!



Letter From Olivia September: Back to Life, Back to Reality

Hello Lovely,

It’s officially back to school in a BIG way! I never thought that I would ever be excited about back to school shopping, but this past month, I spent a lot of time prepping for my new job as a guidance counsellor in an elementary school, hence why August saw so little posts and updates. So far I’m almost done with week one of school. I honestly thought that I may have over-prepared but now, within the first three days of school, I can clearly see that I have under-prepared! So if you’re like me, September is going to be all about acing this back-to-school thing! Whether it’s getting and staying organised, meal prepping, outfit planning, or somehow managing to stay in shape through it all, we’re going to talk about it! I’m also excited to share with you some of my activities that I have tried already with the kids. If you are a teacher, counsellor or play therapist, you’ll definitely want to tune in for those posts.

Here’s the rundown:

·       Mondays are for getting your head in the game! So we’ll bring back Motivational Mondays (I know that was a crowd favourite). This can take the form of a devotional, meal plan for the week or simply a lesson plan (play therapy) idea.

·       Tuesdays are for style! While I like to start my week with a bang, some people just aren’t that ready. So you may not look your best on Monday. But that doesn’t mean we can’t make up for it with awesome outfit ideas for the next seven days!

·       Wednesdays, which were usually reserved for “What I’m Wearing Wednesday”, will now serve for hump day motivation! That’s right, FITNESS TIPS are back! We’ll be sharing health and wellness tips and tricks, and a fitness video on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month.

·       After that you’ve got to be thirsty, so it’s time for Thirsty Thursdays! CAUTION: Drink recipes may not always be kid-friendly.

·       And Fridays are for winding down. We’ll be answering any questions you may have about the week, or the upcoming week as well as recounting our favourite moments of the week!

Of course I didn’t forget about your freebies! Your monthly freebie should be here next week. I can’t wait to start sharing with you, so stay tuned!


Letter From Olivia: Do It Yourself July

Hello Lovely,

We’re officially in summer mode, and trust me I know how tempting it can be to abandon hope and do nothing, because you didn’t get the summer body you had hoped for or you feel that it’s too hot to be productive. But together, for the next three weeks, we’re going to beat that feeling! The summer is the perfect time for do-it-yourself projects, because this is the time we host friends over for soirees, or travel and want to find creative ways to recount our adventures and souvenirs. And what better way to start off the conversation than, “Let me show you what I made”, “Did you know I made this outfit”, “Don’t you just love __________________, can you believe I made it?”

We’re doing everything summer-themed! In addition to summer-themed recipes, we’re going to make quick and easy summer dresses, summer shopping guides, sweat-free summer workouts and to unwind, cool and refreshing beauty treatments! We’re even working on new back-to-school projects, especially for those in the education field, and those with kids of their own. Because let’s face it, even though we just started summer vacation, school will be back in session before we know it.

So hold on tight, because this is going to be a wild and extra summer!

What’s your favourite part of summer, or favourite summer project? Tell us about your amazing summer activities in the comment section below.


Letter from Olivia: Spring into Action

Hello Lovely,

It’s April! That means that it’s spring time, which also means we’re one step closer to summer! While I'm not excited about the summer heat that has already hit us (sorry for those still experiencing snow), I am excited for school to close, freeing up more of my time! And if you’re not as excited as I am (maybe you still have snow), don’t feel bad. This month is all about shaking off those winter blues and springing into action!

That means actually working towards that summer body (summer is only 2 months away) and getting back on track with those resolutions. Of course I'm still going to bring you yummy new recipes, and I'm always here if you need advice on a sticky situation. In yesterday's Motivational Monday, I shared tips on how to create a healthy balance of work and your personal life that you do not want to miss! I’m sure my fellow busy bees can appreciate that!

But we’re also super excited about Mother’s Day next month! And next month, I’ll be meeting my future mother in law for the first time, so I’ll share my tips on how to make a great first impression and of course what my experience was like. I’ll also share great Mother’s Day cards that you can exchange, but it’s for my subscribers only so you have subscribe if you want to get in on the action.

Stay tuned!

What are you most excited to see on LifeByOlivia.net this month?

Leave any blog post requests in the comments below.