stop dickering around.


I LOVE spending Sundays in Toronto, well in all honesty I love ANYTIME in Toronto. With every corner you turn you can see something new. It’s my kind of bliss — tiny adventures a block at a time. Yesterday afternoon I went to Gusto 101 with the bf and cousins. We sat on the patio and were pummelled with sunshine — it felt great. I had the burger and a glass of their white wine that’s on tap ($1 an ounce!) my mouth is still salivating. Whenever I’m in the city I tend to think big thoughts, dream big dreams. Everything about Toronto is so much BIGGER and FASTER than anything in Bolton.

This is how it is, you’re stagnant for so long and then all of a sudden everything happens at once. All of a sudden your dreams shift and mould into something completely different. All of a sudden life is catching up to you and you can’t seem to understand how quickly you turned twenty-five. You feel like you were nineteen last week instead of six years ago. All of a sudden every single choice you make has an immediate result and impact on your life. All of a sudden you’ve got to stop dickering around and grow the eff up.

IMG_7942I’m not the type to dick around. I want different things than I wanted last year and I’ve got to work hard in order to get them. Patience is a virtue but persistence is a necessity. Changes are immediate, with no end in sight. I don’t want to press pause, rewind, or even fast forward because I’m enjoying the uncertainty of my life right now. My story is just getting interesting…



The Opposite of Loneliness [Book Review]

Book Reviews, Bursting the Bubble

cvr9781476753614_9781476753614_lgI read about The Opposite of Loneliness in FLARE Magazine and immediately emailed Simon & Schuster Canada to ask them for a copy (please please please please!). They happily obliged in exchange for an honest review, one that I am honoured to give. Marina Keegan a graduate from Yale, died in a car crash five days after graduation. She was an award-winning author and journalist with a play that was supposed to be produced at the New York Fringe Festival AND a job waiting for her at The New Yorker.

Her final essay is where this collection of essays and stories begins, ‘The Opposite of Loneliness’ is an essay about graduation and her time at Yale being anything but lonely. This essay was published in The Yale Daily News and went viral with over 1.4 million hits. Marina would have been turning twenty-five this year, just like me. Her fiction and nonfiction resonated with me as a writer, student, woman, and human being. She demonstrates a knack for understanding the human condition and has a way with words that tickles your mind. My favourite of her essays is ‘Song for the Special’, discussing all of those jealousies we have towards other people. All of our own insecurities and the yearning desire to be special, to create something wonderful and amazing. This essay shows not only her wisdom but her humanity.

She seemed to be a regular girl with a remarkable understanding of herself and the world around her. I read her book in awe and sheer admiration that someone so young could write so incredibly well. Her essays inspired me to pick up my pen more often and to think outside the box. I felt anything but lonely while reading this book. I felt like I was talking to a friend, spending time with someone I’ve known my whole life.

I felt the opposite of lonely and I am so thankful I read this book.

Talk soon,

Vanessa Xo

Photo of book and information from the Simon & Schuster Website

The Opposite of Loneliness comes out April 8th! 

Magic Mountain is UP…

Family Time, Just for Fun


image copy

It’s about that time of year! Yesterday my Tia and Mama slaved over creating the beautiful mountain you see above. It’s some kind of a Portuguese tradition and if you think this one is awesome you should see my aunt’s, it covers her entire basement. 

The pictures will never do this mountain justice though, it really is something you should see in person. My brother used to set up a blanket, ask my mom to make him a hot chocolate, and just sit there staring at it for hours on end (I guess that’s one way to keep you four-year-old quiet). I’ve written a few short stories about this magic mountain and the best part is that each year it looks different, each year a new story is born. This year they forgot to include my favourite house though (THE LIBRARY) so I may have to pull some kind of 007 mission to get it up there.

I cannot believe Christmas is only 16 days away!

What are some of your favourite magical Christmas traditions?

Comment below!

Love Always
Vanessa Xo

We ALL Have a Story…

Family Time, Lifestyle/Personal, Uncategorized

On Tuesday I realized that I don’t talk to my grandparents enough as I should. We went to my Dad’s parents’ house to celebrate Nonna’s 70th birthday and for the first time in a long time I got to  hear their stories. They told us stories about one another, about my dad, Zia, and Zios. My Nonna married my twenty-four-year-old Nonno when she was just sixteen-years-old. Apparently Nonna had nothing to offer Nonno’s family – no dowry to speak of. My great-grandmother told my Nonno’s family that all Nonna had to offer were her hands to work, her legs to walk, and her eyes to see. It must have been love because they were wed in spite of her having nothing. They took the two-week boat ride to Canada and then the train to Toronto.

The joy I saw in my grandparents’ eyes as they told us their stories, will never leave me. It must be a wonderful feeling to talk to your grandchildren about your life and see that they are eager to listen.…listen to them. 

Love Always
Vanessa Xo

P.S. My Nonno wears hipster sweaters.

Oh hey! Come in and have a seat.

Just for Fun, Lifestyle/Personal, Uncategorized

Oh hey! Come in and have a seat.

Yes, there on the white chair.

Now turn around and read the sign behind you, Everyone has a story. 

You can turn back to me.


What’s your story? You read my story every day on Twitter, Facebook, and here on my blog. You follow my story – albeit it isn’t my whole story. It’s just fragments of my story. It’s a little piece in the puzzle of my story. It’s the part I want to share with you.

So, what’s your story?

Share it with me in the comments.

You might as well – you’ve already had a seat.

Love Always
Vanessa Xo

P.S. Don’t let this be the time of no reply (comment!).

Love this sad song, it’s kind of soothing.