I like to say that I’m a country girl at heart, living in the heart of the big city.
I have two homes. In Spain my large extended family lives in Pontejos, Santander, a gorgeous area with many examples of Prehistoric and Roman history on the Atlantic Coast. In Canada I live in Vancouver, B.C., another spectacular seaside city, but on the Pacific Ocean.
I need the ocean air so enjoy the outdoors as much as my busy schedule allows.
Both cities are made for walking with many seawalls and quaint neighbourhoods to explore on foot.
Santander was developed in 1909, to be a resort for the Spanish Royal family, so the architecture is stunning. The densely populated West End of Vancouver was just voted one of the best neighbourhoods in the world. It’s the best of both worlds.
Lots of Sleep
I invested in Manito Silk bedding more than a decade ago and it was such a great purchase, I became a faithful fan.
The feel of the silk fabric against my skin when I finally get into bed at the end of another busy day lulls me to sleep and, as women of a certain age will appreciate, their 100% natural fibres help keep body temperature regulated — the silk pillowcases also help prevent sleep creases on my face and my hair from frizzing up, so they’re a must-have.
There are lots of options, I just happen to be hooked on Manito’s quality. They’re definitely an investment, but gentle wash and dry makes them last.
Try their Sleep Eye Mask, it’s a small luxury that’s worth the investment.
Food and Wine
I only started cooking about 13 years ago, but have never looked back. And, while I might not yet be a great cook, I do enjoy making delicious and healthy meals. My collection of Le Creuset would imply my skills are more advanced than they are, but I love having a well equipped kitchen. Another investment that has already paid for itself? Most of my recipes are from Cooking Light, because who needs extra calories?
Organic, local and sustainable products are key. My doctor suggested I stay away from all ingested chemicals, so organic is vital for my health.
Since I eat mostly a Mediterranean Diet, it’s vegetables, chicken or seafood at dinner time. My fave suppliers? Farmer’s Markets and for my seafood I schedule regular deliveries from OrganicOcean.ca or I sometimes shop at the Finest at Sea retail store.
My wines have to meet the same criteria so I order cases directly from Mission Hill Family Estate and have a collection of special bottles from Checkmate Artisanal Winery. I love Chardonnays but on occasion, also an earthy red!
When at my house in Spain I am lucky enough to have family and friends with large edible gardens and get gift baskets of vegetables that are in season. I get my wines from Goyo Garcia Viadero Winery in Ribera Del Duero as he’s a top producer of delicious organic wines.
Eat and drink organic and sustainably, our planet and your body will thank you.
Time for Myself
If you look in the dictionary under, “Type A personality,” there’s a good chance you’ll find my photo, which is why I used to be terrible at finding any balance between my work and personal life.
But with age comes wisdom and I now know that without it I’m not doing anyone a favour, especially myself, which is why I started adding more “me time” to my schedule.
One activity I love and which is non-negotiable, is a morning walk. If I’m not filming it’s in my calendar, an appointment with myself. I head to the beach and power walk, letting the ocean air clear my head and help me prepare for the day. I’ve also made weight training for maintaining a strong skeleton and Pilates for core strength and flexibility part of my weekly routine. Maureen and her trainers at SweatCo Workout Studios keep me motivated,
Find your routine and stick to it. As we age, we need to exercise. That’s the longevity “magic pill” everyone is looking for. Motion IS Lotion.
Health & Wellness
I am an advocate for everyone to be their own health manager. Through my TV shows I have interviewed countless medical professionals and they’ve inspired me to take control of my health.
My calendar has dental appointments every three months as mouth health is directly connected to heart health. It’s not just about pearly whites, much can be determined by your dentist.
The Westcoast Women’s Clinic was my first stop on taking control of my health and the clinic’s founder Dr. Bal Pawa helped set me on the right path. I’m quick to schedule appointments with specialists as I know the value of early detection and treatment.
After a lifetime of athletics and running I needed to undo some of that damage, so regular massage therapy and physio appointments make sure my muscles and skeleton age well.
I also use great products for skin and hair. My desire to stay away from as many chemicals as possible has drawn me to Electric London hair products, which my star stylist Martin Hillier, co-founder of The Lounge Hair Studio recommended. For my sensitive skin I have to invest in very clean products and Sysley is perfect for me. Yes, they’re an investment, but worth it.