Audio Books are my jam!

I have this thing… I LOVE personal development & autobiographical books! Like can not get enough! However… I don’t like to read them. In fact I can barely get half way through any given one before I’m kicking it to the curb. I can however listen to hours and hours of these books. When I’m walking, when I’m driving, when I’m working, when I’m folding laundry… you get the point. Audiobooks have changed the reading game for me! I “read” more books: personal developement and autobiographical books last year than ever before, at least 15+. I read read maybe 3.

Here’s a few things I’ve learned about myself…

  • I want the audio books to be read by the author. It make me feel like I’m hanging out with them. I will often avoid an audio book if it’s not read by the author.
  • If it’s not read by the author I will listen to a clip and if I don’t like the readers voice or how they read it- I won’t choose that book.
  • I can only listen to audiobooks if I’m alone. I find it annoying if other people are around. I got headphones for my birthday and it was a game changer!
  • I discovered that I can walk/run farther and for longer if I’m caught up in an audiobook.
  • I can not listen to fiction audio books. I can not pay attention and I get bored so easily. (I have to read these and not listen. I prefer crime & thriller.)

The books pictured above are all so good. I have listened to The Year of Yes and Big Magic multiple times. I loved the books from Amy Poehler, Tiny Fey & Mindy Kaling- we would totally be BFF’s in real life, I just know it. ūüėČ Not pictured are all the books¬†by Brene Brown, I could listen to her tell her story and share her work all day!

I get most of my audiobooks from the library, I simply download¬†it to my phone with the Overdrive app and away we go, I also really like when I’m looking to buy.

I’m currently listening to these two and so far I’m loving both. Completely different and both completely captivating.

If you are an audio book lover and you have a favorite (nonfiction) let me know.





Edmonton Ice Castle

How lucky are we that our home city hosts this amazing event.¬†This is Edmonton’s second year hosting the Ice Castle, last year was the first castle built outside of the USA and the most popular in the company’s history. Way to go Edmonton! This year- the castle is way bigger and even more spectacular! I basically walk around with my mouth wide open in awe.

We went on a Monday evening to the 5-5:30pm time slot. The sun was well on it’s way down but we got to see both day & night views of the ice. I only took photos with my phone so many of the images are grainy because of the light but photos don’t do it justice anyways. Seeing it in person is a winter must do for us. Tickets can be found here¬†and I do recommend buying tickets ahead of time. One- they’re cheaper & two-time slots sell out so this way you’re getting what you want.


Fun Fact: there is over 25000 tons of ice


Fun Fact: The castle is created with hand placed icicles. 10000 icicles are grown each day and harvested by icicles farmers (I can’t tell you how much I love that- icicle farmers). The castle is 100% ice and has no other inner structure.


Fun Fact: Each tower is 10-20 feet thick

Fun Fact: The water used is taken from the North Saskatchewan River, treated and then  in the spring the water returns to the river. This is referred to as non-consumptive use.

Fun Fact: The icicles will not fall. This is because there is no weak point limiting the strength of the structure. When the castle melts it does so from the smallest point up.


Fun Fact: The lights are placed right inside the ice as it’s being built/frozen.

2016: One Second Video

It’s been 2 weeks since we said goodbye to 2016 and ¬†I wanted to share a little recap. This past year I downloaded the One Second Everyday app to record our year. It’s a visual diary, one second captured daily (or not) and then pieced together to create a movie. Honestly- it’s amazing. The finished movie made my heart so happy.

Here’s a few things worth mentioning:

I was not consistent but I love this app & I 100% recommend it. I am using it again this year, seeing the finished product is so amazing to me.

The idea is that you take a video every single day, load it into the app and then it helps you trim out 1 second. At the end of the week, month , year you can mash them all together and you have a mini movie.

Once your video is in the app you can delete the video from your phone storage to save space. The video on the app is only a 1 second snip so if the video was one I wanted to keep I downloaded it to my computer before deleting from my phone.

I did not take a video every single day, I pretty much missed all of March.  I  did not stress about it. I did  almost always have a photo from the day (October is mostly photos) and I loaded the image to the app instead. Not as great as a video but a memory captured and that really is what this was all about for me.

2016 in 1 seconds…

Winter Pages

This month I designed the kit and the page inspiration for Treasured Memories. The January month kit is gorgeous (sorry, it sold out by the 6th) and is packed full of product from multiple companies but heavy on the Simple Stories (If you saw yesterday’s post you now see that I was obsessed with the Winter Wonderland collection).

These are two of the pages I created with the product, I made 7 total with plenty of extra paper and embellishments left over.


These photos are from last year’s Ice Castle, we’re headed back this year and super excited because it’s bigger and suppose to be better. I’ll be sure to share all about it after we go.


Happy Friday Friends, have a great weekend.


Celebrate your Day: New Cards/Kits


I am back to creative work after three weeks off and it felt a little weird not making Christmas cards. When you start making Christmas card classes in July and end the first week of December it can play tricks on your creative brain when you try to switch back to something else. When I find this happening, the best thing I can do for myself is  find a paper line that I love and then sketch out some designs. This helps my creativity flow so much smoother.


These are my cards for January’s class at Treasured Memories.

I used the¬†Winter Wonderland¬†collection from Simple Stories, these papers and patterns were love at first sight. When it arrived at the store they opened the box and sent me a text- “Wait until you see the new Simple Stories!” My paper loves are so predictable.card-collage-1

These cards are also available as a class kit to take home. The kit comes complete with all the product, instructions & photos and the best part is that Treasured Memories will ship them to you if you’re not local.

Class Details:

Celebrate Your Day: Card Class with Nadine

Wednesday, January 25  from 6:00pm Р8:30pm.

Cost is $40 (kit cost is also $40, shipping extra)

To sign up for a class spot or a class kit you can call Treasured Memories at 780-414-1540 or email me at nadinekarendesign(at)gmail(dot)com

One Little Word: 2017


Every year I choose a word, sometimes that word stays with me and I check in with it every now & then and then other times I find that I have forgotten what the word even was.

(If the concept of One Little word is new to you- please check out this post from Ali Edwards. She has inspired me over the years and has brought this concept & process into my life. )

I wanted this year to be different. I wanted to use it as a guide, as a teacher, as a cheerleader and as a permission slip.

My word for 2017: Invest

I didn’t have trouble finding a word, it came running at me…. more like a sprint. When I tried to find a “better” word I was sent directly back to¬†Invest.

Invest by definition: to devote one’s time, effort or energy to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a worth while result.

I have spent a great deal of time over the past (many) years putting myself last. Making excuses as to why I was too busy for myself or the things I loved or the things I wanted to try. I am an expert in convincing myself to just stay stagnant. I have spent too much time saying yes to things that did not excite me or yes to things that served someone else instead of serving me. I then end each day on an empty tank. Before I¬†even have a chance to look inside I am saying goodnight and “we’ll try again tomorrow”. But that doesn’t happen, ¬†I have slipped into a circle and I simply just keep going around and around. When I try to step out my anxiety gets the best of me and the gremlins in my head say things like “See, it’s just easier this way, get back in your circle where you belong.” or “You took time for yourself and now everything is behind.” or “There is just not enough time, money, etc. for you to do xy&z.”

I was becoming more and more aware of this pattern and it was making me so very sad and so very bored. So when¬†I say the word¬†Invest¬†ran at me, I mean it. “Invest in yourself Nadine…. you can’t take care of anyone or anything if you don’t fill up your cup first.” And for the first time I didn’t feel any guilt about the prospect of doing so. In fact, I felt lighter.

I decided I needed some sort of accountability, inspiration and help so I signed up for Ali Edwards’¬†One Little Word workshop where I will receive monthly prompts and inspiration for living with my word.

I completed January’s prompts and worksheets. I answered questions about what I was excited about, what scared me about this concept and what I wanted to let go of in 2017. The questions made me think & be honest, ¬†I didn’t like it at first but once I got into it and let go of feeling silly I couldn’t stop writing. It reminded me of the first time I saw a therapist- at first I didn’t know what to say and then all of a sudden I couldn’t shut up. Ha.

Here’s a bit of my journaling:

This year I would like to invite: A better sense of self, more time for the things I love and the things that make me happy and more patience with myself.

What I hope to let go of this year: Negative self talk & limiting beliefs. Negative energy and the belief that putting time into myself is wrong and selfish, that personal development is foolish.

It’s January 10 and I can say that so far so good. Not an easy task to change my patterns and actions. Sometimes I feel like I am wandering around confused but I am taking steps forward and choosing things that serve me first has been both stressful and rewarding.