Tag Archives: This Beautiful Life
I first met the lovely Angela Aiello when I got into blogging in 2010 during one of her wine events. I have always admired her hustle, hard work and expertise on something I personally find a bit daunting – wine. Angela Aiello works to make wine accessible to everyone. You don’t have to be an expert to enjoy wine and I love her fun approach. Her entrepreneurial spirit is what I find the most inspiring. Meet Angela Aiello everyone!
Do you remember what first sparked your interest in wine?
Yes, I remember loving a bottle of Riesling like nothing I’ve ever had before when I was 18. It was my mom who told me to apply for the job in wine when I was 16, but it is Riesling who is my one true wine love and has helped spike my interest in the whole industry.
What was the definitive moment for you when you decided to pursue a career in wine?
I realized after trying to earn a career in media upon graduating from university and working in Toronto that I had 8 years of wine experience that was very valuable. I had worked in the wine industry to put myself through school and although I had a communications degree and wanted something in media, it was hard working at the bottom of the food chain in that industry. I realized that all my wine knowledge was an asset and started to brainstorm a way to integrate my in-field experience with my degree.
5 years ago I went full-time into my own freelance work and haven’t looked back since, but it was a big move to make the change from stable work to the life of a hustling entrepreneur.
I recently met the incredible Stephanie Rice through my friend Kristin Dahl (whom I’ll be featuring in the next few weeks!). Stephanie and Kristin recently wrote the e-book, The Art of Wellness and I am a huge fan of their philosophy. I was also fascinated and inspired to learn that Stephanie is an Olympic Gold Medalist for Australia with THREE gold medals under her belt! How is that for a fascinating career path?
I definitely wanted to profile Stephanie to learn more about her philosophy on healthy eating, working out and of course – swimming. Meet Stephanie Rice everyone!
How did you get your start as a swimmer?
I started swimming as a baby in learn-to-swim classes and I just loved being in the water so much that I kept progressing through to squad and club teams.
What inspired you to pursue a career in competitive swimming?
From the age of about 3 or 4 I knew I was put here on Earth to do something really special and I just felt so strongly that it was to go to the Olympics. I knew it would be for swimming because I loved it so much.
What was it like to win THREE Olympic gold medals?
It was the most incredible moment and feeling of my life. Having everything come together in that 1 moment to execute everything to near perfection on the biggest sporting stage was a dream come true. It was very surreal and it all happened so fast that I didn’t have much time to just stop and take it all in … but it was magical.
What sorts of things are you pursuing since announcing your retirement from competitive swimming?
Since finishing swimming I have been discovering my other passions and inspirations. I have a great knowledge for health, fitness and wellness which was why I wanted to create the e-book “The Art of Wellness” with Kristin, but also I love on-camera work and business skills, so combining that on the popular TV show “Celebrity Apprentice” in 2013 was such a great experience, and a huge honour to win the show.
When I first met Brenny Giovis, I was her wedding DJ! Crazy right? Running my own business brought me together with a lot of great clients – many of whom I’ve stayed friends with beyond their wedding day.
Brenny Giovis is definitely one of those clients.
When we first met, Brenny was working full-time at a company as a graphic designer. She has since gone on to launch a wildly successful stationery line called Paperfelt. Nordstrom recently came calling and her cards are now sold in-store at their Ottawa location. Brenny has since quit her job and now focuses on Paperfelt full-time. It is so inspiring to read about her hard work, hustle and success.
Meet Brenny Giovis everyone!
How did you decide on a career in graphic design?
I had a crash graphic design course in high school and my teacher was pretty cool. I think I learned how to scan a logo in and clean it up in Photoshop and not much else, but my teacher was so kind and sincere that whatever she said kind of stuck with me.
I honestly didn’t even know what graphic design was until I was a semester into college. My dad was so mad because he wanted me to become a teacher and he kept saying what do you do in graphic design anyway and I couldn’t even answer him.
Ruth Tal, founder of Fresh Restaurants and Juice Bar in Toronto
Ruth Tal knows healthy eating. I make it no secret that one of my favourite places in Toronto is Fresh Restaurant and Juice Bar, a growing vegetarian chain she founded back in 1999. As soon as I land, I head straight to the Queen West location for their crunchy Quinoa Onion Rings and a Baby Beach Bowl with Grilled Tofu.
Since I am such a major fan of their healthy and affordable eats, I was thrilled for the chance to interview Ruth to learn about her own health journey, life advice and career path. Meet Ruth Tal!
What inspired your love of vegan foods and juicing?
My love for this planet and animals inspired me to find ways to tread as lightly on it as I possibly could. Choosing a plant-based diet and juicing were the natural outcome of this intention to help and make a positive difference in the choices I make every day.
Apart from that, I grew up loving my mom’s colourful Moroccan cooking and liberal use of fresh fruits and vegetables. Focusing on vegan foods and juicing meant I could indulge my love of eating legumes, grains, fruits, greens and vegetables even more!
I first met the lovely Erin Souder at Alt Summit in Salt Lake City this past January. I sat in on a panel that Erin and Alexis Mattox hosted about launching your own product line. It’s definitely something I’ve been thinking about, so I was easily intrigued by their processes. I really admire how Erin gives 150% to everything that she does and how she left a steady corporate career to pursue her dream. I’m excited for all of you to meet Erin!
What motivated you to start your wildly successful home decor website, Earnest Home Co.
I started Earnest Home Co. back in 2011 because I literally had too many ideas to keep inside my head! I would always be creating something, or renovating a room, or whipping up a party and friends always wanted to know how I thought of the ideas I had. I realized that I had to share my creative process and ideas with the world. (more…)
Whenever I check in on Jennifer Weatherhead’s Instagram feed, she is always jetting off somewhere super cool. In addition to her love of travel, Jen is runs all of the social media at Hello! Canada and Hello! USA. Jen has so much incredible knowledge about working in digital (she spent 8+ years at Elle Canada), I knew instantly that I wanted to feature her for this column. Meet Jen everybody!
How did you decide on a career as a writer and editor?
I remember being in elementary school and writing these ridiculously long, obscure stories during writing period and it has always stuck with me. So there was never any question what direction I was headed in while in school. I did focus on broadcast and TV when I went to journalism school and did that for a brief time before switching back to writing at the insistence of an old university professor who said I should. His words still stick with me to this day!
Tell us more about your role as the Social Media Manager of Hello! Canada and Hello! US
My job at Hello! Canada and Hello! US is SO much fun. I pinch myself sometimes when thinking about how much I love it and how lucky I am to work for another international brand. Hello! US just launched a digital-only version of the brand in December, so I am helping them build their social media presence from the ground up. Starting from fresh on any project is fulfilling and an amazing way to learn more about digital – and it gives you an opportunity to find a voice and brand identity.
And for Hello! Canada I handle all of their social media accounts, curating the most beautiful aspects of the brand (from both print and web), hopefully inspiring our followers and keeping them up to date on all things celebrity and royal. And looking at pictures of Prince George or researching the hottest male bachelors in Canada isn’t a bad way to spend the day 😉
For 8+ years you were the Senior Web Editor at Elle Canada. What makes a great blog post?
The world of the web changed so much while I was at Elle Canada. It’s what I love most about working in digital! But one thing that’s always remained the same for a good blog post (or good content on the web in general), in my opinion, is having a unique voice to set you apart from all the internet clutter. Short is always better.
When training someone new on blogging or web content, I always start with keeping it easy to read. Think point-form, easy-to-digest paragraphs and beautiful images, and make sure the reader always has something to take away. It sounds so simple but it works – and that’s what will keep them coming back. And those loyal fans and followers are your bread and butter in the online world. (more…)