In hindsight: Reviewing 2016 goals

Ever since I have been blogging (just over 5 years now), I have shared my new years resolutions to hold me accountable. Setting goals is one thing, sticking to them and evaluating your progress is another. This exercise has kept me honest and really is a fun way to see where the year has brought me.

I have experienced some amazing opportunities this year. Looking back, some of the most memorable 2016 events in my blogging career where:


I’m not sure what everyone is talking about, but 2016 was good to me. Minus my health issues, which have always been there, I have experienced some amazing opportunities and have made some amazing friends this year. I have grown personally and professionally and I am thankful for each life experience that has been handed to me.

Last year’s goals were SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and measurable)… or so I thought they were! Let’s see if I held my promises.

  1. BUDGET-Get a grip on spending, pay off small credit card debt and start mega-saving. Allow me to explain… NO PROGRESS! I think I am at status quo here! hahaha
  2. HEALTH- Maintain weight loss and lose more if possible (no pressure). Maintain workout schedule and running. All this while protecting my lower back and shoulder. Ok, so I think I have maintained and maybe gained a few pounds. I did run a 5K marathon but did not maintain the running. I will blame this on my new endometriosis symptoms.
  3. FAMILY- More of it; time and members. Register Victor for swimming and gymnastics. Ok, I did register Victor for swimming and this post is reminding me that I need to do it again in the new year! More family members is a little complicated. I didn’t realize at the time that I was experiencing infertility caused by my endometriosis. But getting answers for my stomach issues was on my list and one year later, I have a whole new set of issues to deal with from surgery to IVF!
  4. WORK & LIFE BALANCE- Find ways and time to tune out and to kick butt all at the same time. Still working on this one, it’s an ongoing struggle. Please tell me when you have found the answer.
  5. ART- Start painting and drawing again. I have done a few paintings with Victor, that should count for something! I would love to do a calligraphy course, though!
  6. MUSIC- Get guitar lessons and perform an open mike song. I’m a regular at Achoired Taste karaoke at the Belmont, but no official open mike with guitar in hand.
  7. VACATION- insert Italy/Armenia trip here. Also, See #1. Booked a trip to Hawaii in January! That has to count for something.
  8. WRITING- Start my first kid’s book, have an article published on Huffington Post and take on more paid work. More paid work, check! The rest we shall see.
  9. DECLUTTER- my life, my house, my friends, my stuff, my clothes. Getting there! I did a huge clothing sale which was an eye opener, but until I get a grip of #1… this will become a never ending vicious cycle. I am almost ready for another sale!
  10. MODE XLUSIVE- keep blogging, grow my Instagram account and do more TV gigs. Um, I think I nailed this one, what do you think?
  11. FIVE YEAR PLAN- Buy a second house as a rental unit. Calm down there, overachiever.
chantsy-best-nine-2016
My 2016 best nine! Instagram has been a game changer for me this year!

As for my 2017 goals? I want to keep them simple. These goals are not SMART at all, but more of a new frame of mind that I need to embrace.

  1. LESS- find peace of mind with doing less, owning less, spending less, buying less. I watched the documentary “The Minimalists” on Netflix and I loved their quote “Love people, use things. The opposite never works.”
  2. WEALTH- Money and knowledge. If I do well at #1, I will automatically have more money. I need to curve my spending and get my finances in tip top shape! I also want to learn more ( about digital strategy, video editing, growing my Instagram following, SEO) and travel- duh!
  3. HEALTH- I want to start exercising again, so I feel better and keep my weight off. I want my surgery date, and I want it to go well, and lastly I want Victor to have a sibling.

The rest is all lovely, but ultimately, if I don’t have a healthy body and mind, I can kiss the rest of these goals goodbye.

So cheers to you, my friends! Have a great NEW YEAR and I wish you all the best!

XOXO Chantsy

PS- my husband pointed out to me that the horseshoe in my hero image has to be upside down for good luck… oh brother! haha

Continue Reading

Transformation: Why vacationing scares me

Well here we are, it’s January 2016, exactly one year since I started my transformation journey. I just came back from a one week all-inclusive vacation in Cancun, and my worst nightmare has finally set in. I have no joke, gained 12 pounds. It all spiralled downhill since the Christmas celebrations in December. How could I have let this happen?

I promised I would be good. No desserts, no fried or breaded foods, light on the drinks. I got this. Nope. I was on a rampage, and could not help myself. I overindulged, over ate and over celebrated every, single, day. Now I am embarrassed, ashamed and I feel defeated. I need to find that motivation again. And fast!

“Tomorrow – I’m gonna have salad”, that’s been my mantra over the last year when I had a bad food day. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not obsessed with food, it’s just that I’ve worked so hard to get where I am and all it took was a lousy glutinous week down south to ruin me! The worst part is the food wasn’t even that great. I mean, not really calorie worthy, ja feel?

I tried to be somewhat active. Went for walks, played beach volleyball, participated in the group Zumba class, floated in the water… but it was not nearly enough movement.

I just feel so bloated, and swollen. I feel like the combination of flying and sun does that to you. Maybe it’s from the plane ride? I am so scared to get weighed it at Weight Watchers… I feel like I need a good week to cleans the bad habits out of my system. You know, like “I’ll have the water and salad, hold the dressing” kinda meals for 7 days, while I quiver and sweat out the excess lard through my pores #Rehabstyle.

I know I can do this! I just need some motivation from you, my readers. I also have a new pair jeans I bought last month, I should use them as a motivational tool. They were the smallest size I’ve ever owned… I hope I can squeeze back into them soon. I won’t even try until I lose a few pounds. It would just be too cruel to do it now.

Other than that, my trip was excellent. Lots of relaxing, unplugging and creating of memories with my family.

Anyway, thanks for listening. Just needed to vent. 💋

Strategically placed behind my husband and sucking in the tummy- the only way to take a photo in my bathing suit! Also, in this pic I’m wearing an Addition Elle bra as a bikini top (it’s on sale now!)! It’s so supportive, fun and comfortable.

PS- Please do not take this post as an opportunity to sell me any weight loss regimes, products or services. I am so tired of being bombarded with sales pitches, because I choose to talk about my weight. I got this. Thanks!

Continue Reading

In hindsight: Reviewing 2015 Goals

chantal-sarkisian-chantsy-mode-xlusive-ottawa-fashion-blog

Some of you may not know this about me, but I have been blogging for over five years. I started creative writing on my blog to get better at it and to use it as my public journal. An escpae for creative ideas and a place for me to look back on. Every year, since I started blogging, I evaluate the goals I have set for myself. This is the first time, that I am carrying over the “In hindsight” series, as they usually live on my “Me So Pritti” blog.

Here are the goals I set for myself in 2015 (from In Hindsight 4):

  1. Finish kitchen renos on time and on budget– YES! My sexy kitchen is done and we don’t have (that much) residual debt from it. Our current debt is from other bad habits (#shopaholic #2016resolution).
  2. Lose 25 lbs (joined Weight Watchers  a few weeks ago and getting a personal trainer in January)– YES! I have lost (on a good day) 20 lbs since I started my new weightless journey. I do really need to get back into high gear though.
  3. Do more activities as a family (zoo, camping, vacations, road trips)- YES! We went to Papanack Zoo this year, we went camping in Ithaca this summer and visited friends in Thunder Bay and we are leaving for Cancun on Saturday!
  4. Get guitar lessons- Unfortunately not achieved.
  5. Perform an open Mic- Unfortunately not achieved.
  6. Buy my husband a truck of his dreams (SAVE!)- Soooooo, I bought a new car instead and he has my old SUV which is his new truck?
  7. Get myself a new car (SAVE MORE!)- yes! See #6. Look at me killing 2 birds with one stone.
  8. Travel to Italy or Armenia (SAVE EVEN MORE!)- I wish. All hope is not lost.
  9. Kick butt at Go-to Girl- Can’t wait to share what I have been working on for the new year!!!
  10. Nurture my plus-size fashion blog Mode XLusive– I am going to go ahead and say HELLZ YESSS!!
  11. 5 year plan… buy a second house, have another baby… a girl this time 😉 Sadly, nothing to report on this front.

I love this. I love seeing where my head was at. I can remember vividly what I was going through last December. I was stressed out, just like I am now, but the priorities were different. The focus has shifted. I really recommend this exercise to everyone!

Ok, now for 2016:

  1. BUDGET-Get a grip on spending, pay off small credit card debt and start mega-saving.
  2. HEALTH- Maintain weight loss and lose more if possible (no pressure). Maintain workout schedule and running. All this while protecting my lower back and shoulder.
  3. FAMILY- More of it; time and members. Register Victor for swimming and gymnastics.
  4. WORK & LIFE BALANCE- Finds ways and time to tune out and to kick butt all at the same time.
  5. ART- Start painting and drawing again.
  6. MUSIC- Get guitar lessons and perform an open mike song.
  7. VACATION- insert Italy/Armenia trip here. Also See #1.
  8. WRITING- Start my first kids book, have an article published on Huffington Post and take on more paid work.
  9. DECLUTTER- my life, my house, my friends, my stuff, my clothes.
  10. MODE XLUSIVE- keep blogging, grow my Instagram account and do more TV gigs.
  11. FIVE YEAR PLAN- Buy a second house as a rental unit.

Ok, I think that about sums it all up! Whoa, I have a LOT of work to do, and I better get started! What about you? Do you set yourself goals? Do you review your past year? What stood out for you the most? Have I possibly inspired you to do the same?

Thanks again for tuning in and have a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

mode-xlusive-chantal-sarkisian-ottawa-fashion-blog

Continue Reading