Friday, November 15, 2019

5 ways to reduce your screen time

Technology is one of the best things to happen to humanity. I mean I can literally log in to Amazon and order any random item I can imagine. I mean the sky is literally the limit and I can expect it on my door step the next freakin’ day. What a time to be alive.

However, like every great thing, technology comes with its share of curse. Unfortunately, we are glued to our devices, obsessed with our feeds and I doubt that our thumbs were made to scroll this much. Let's be honest, you are reading this article on a phone of a computer. Seriously, sometimes I feel like my phone is just an extension of my hand.

It’s important to make sure that today’s technology is not negatively affecting our well-being. The question is, how can we do that without necessarily cutting it completely from our lives.

Here are some ways to reduce your screen time, these techniques worked for me, so I'm pretty sure they can help you too.

1- Track your screen time on your phone and your computers.
Most phones today can show you how long you spend on each app. Honestly, just looking at the number of hours you spend on some of these apps might scare your enough to make you realize how much time you are wasting your life away. You can also download an application for your computer or your phone to track the phone usage.
Personally, I was spending a distressing amount of time each day on Instagram. Time that I could've used doing much rewarding things like I don't know... Going to the gym, having sex, I could have finished writing a whole book by now. 

2- Turn off your notifications
Notifications are dangerous for a number of reasons. You are consistently picking up your phone without even thinking and you end up spending more time than necessary on your device. The average smartphone owner unlocks their phone 150 times a day. I didn’t believe it myself until I started tracking my own personal usage. So trust me when I tell you putting your phone on silence or disabling your notifications will definitely do you good.

3- Do a social media detox.
One of the best ways to help you reduce your screen time is too literally and intentionally remove certain apps from your phone. I don't have Facebook on my phone because I was spending way too much time on it. Now a days if I really need to get on Facebook I have to physically log into a computer and go on the website so on and so forth. Which is not as convenient as tapping on an app, therefore not as pleasant and therefore I don't go on Facebook. I honestly recommend doing social media detox. Just try it for a day or 2 then 3, 4 or maybe a week!

4- Block distracting websites.
Create a schedule that blocks some of the most distracting apps from your phone or websites on your other devices. You can actually use other apps in order to do so. How ironic that apps will help you with your app addiction

5- The craziest one
Leave your phone at home on purpose. No one will die. The sky is not going to come crashing down. You can start running some basic errands like going to the grocery without your phone. Just make a groceries list on a piece of paper. I know exactly what your thinking. Who still uses paper and pen? You need to remember the benefits of phone independence especially in today’s anxiety driven climate. 

I hope one of these tips will help you and if you know any other tips please share them with me.

On that note aurevoir
Bisous bisous
Sophia Tim


Monday, November 4, 2019

Grilled Cheese month at the L'Gros Luxe!

Forget about the winter blues Ladies and gents it's grilled Cheese month! Just the thought of that alone should warm up your soul and fill up your stomach during this cold month of November.

During the Whole month of November, it's the “MOIS DU GRILLED CHEESE” at L'Gros Luxe! One thing you should know about me is that I freakin’ love cheese. I put it on everything so when I received an invitation to go try one of their grilled cheese menu I was over the moon. Look at this cheesy smile on the picture above (See what I did there). That's the face of a girl who is about to enjoy the best grilled cheese sandwich or her life!

I went to their restaurant located in Mile End and I had The Philly Boy sandwich and oh boy it was amazing.  It was an absolute mouth-watering moment! L’Gros Luxe has 40 different types of grilled cheese sandwiches this month. However, this is spread out between their different locations. So, each restaurant can have some select grilled cheese from this pool of 40 sandwiches.  

Just when you thought it could not get any better, you will be happy to know that during the whole month of November for each sandwich you buy $1 will go to a local charity. We love a local business that gives back to the community! 

The prices are more than reasonable, and they have great selection of cocktails. I had the “Punchin’ on heavens’ door” cocktail. Let me tell you, it was delicious, and I totally recommend it if you enjoy fruity drinks. Side note though if you do go out for drinks remember to be responsible and get a designated driver.

So go find the closest L'Gros Luxe restaurant to your house, enjoy the great food and thank me later!

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

6 Apps I can't live without when I travel!

Hello you! Do you absolutely love traveling? Well, If you've been following Pardon the french girl for a while you know I do too! I should honestly be a travel blogger. Just saying. Here are my favorite traveling apps. 

Google Maps

I'm pretty sure it’s safe to say you are already using Google Maps in your day to day. It's definitely the best navigation app around (Don`t attack me Waze users) It is a life saver while traveling by car, bus, train or on foot and you have no idea where the heck you are. Maps (Yup we are using it`s little name we are that close) is incredibly reliable pretty much anywhere around the world you can get signal. You can even use google maps offline without burning through your data. When I travel I prefer using public transportation because I'm cheap cheap and also I don't have to go through the headache of trying to find parking in sometimes crowded and small streets. 

One of the worst things when you’re in an unfamiliar city is showing up to a restaurant or attraction, that you`ve been wanting to visit for a really long time, only to find out they are closed. So trust and believe that even when I know where I am going I still Google Map it to not get played by business hours. My favorite feature is the “near me” depending on your location you can find a cafe, restaurant or supermarket near you present location.

Something else I really love to do with Google Maps is to pin awesome spots to visit prior to traveling. Every time I discover a new place on Instagram or Pinterest, I automatically pin it on my Google Map as a “must visit”. Afterwards, you can see all your pins at a glance which is very practical.  And if you are ever near a place that you’ve pinned the app will send you a notification telling you that you are close. Obviously, your location needs to be enabled on your phone to benefit from this cool feature. Google Maps is seriously my best friend. While you travel you can also pin certain places as “places you’ve already visited or love”. It's a lot easier to remember them if you ever want to go back or send recommendations to a friend. 

If you’re anything like me and need help packing, you will love Packpoint. Depending on your destination, the length of your stay and the different activities you are planning on doing, it will generate a personalized list to help you pack the right amount of clothes, accessories, toiletries and electronics. It even looks at the weather forecast to helps you pack the right outfits. I mean the worst thing is being miles and miles away from home and it starts to get chilly outside and you only packed short sleeves tops. 

TripIt organizes all your travel itineraries and documents so you have everything in one place before you even get to your destination. You can even have all your confirmations at the same place. This is a great to have your flight itineraries and/or car rental information handy and readily available. The app also makes it simple to share your trip plans with whoever else that may need to coordinate with you or know what your travel plans are. I highly recommend TripiT when traveling with your family or a group of friends.

I think this app is by far my favorite. You can easily plan your entire trip. Let's say you are going to Lisbon for a few days you can quickly search “Lisbon” and select the 4 days in Lisbon option. It will then create an itinerary for your destination. You can also add hotel locations. The app lets you customize the trip by allowing you to add or  remove any of the listed attraction. You can even add new ones that are not presented to you by the app. Also, in the app you’re able to personalize the start and end times of your day. Importantly, you can include your preferred means of transportation. You have to try this app out the next time you travel because this article is only scratching the surface of this awesome app.

Google Translate 
Google Translate can translate more than 100 languages and several dozen languages offline (make sure to download your desired language(s) before disconnecting from the Wi-Fi). The coolest feature is the instant camera translation. All you have to do is simply open your camera over a text and it translates it right away. For the moment there are 38 languages available. So gone are the days of asking for an English menu.

Ex Currency Converter 
The XE Currency app quickly provides live, up-to-the-minute currency rates, allowing you to store and view them even when you’re offline.  Sometimes pricing in different countries can have you feeling like you are getting a good deal when in reality you are getting played friend. So please save your coins! The app is real easy to use and doesn’t require Wi-Fi. 

This one won't be useful for everyone, but if you love taking pictures during your trip this is the one you will need. Depending on your location it will tell you the exact time of the blue hour, golden and sunrise/sunset times. Those of you passionate about photography know exactly what I’m talking about. Even if you are not a photography buff and just looking for that beautiful shot to add to your feed or timeline you definitely won’t regret downloading PhotoTime so you can be at the right place at the right time for that perfect picture. 

I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I loved writing it. I’m sure there are several amazing travel apps out there that are not on this list so please share you preferred vacation/traveling apps in the comment section below thank you again for following my blog. 

 On that note;
Aurevoir  Bisous, bisous
Sophia Tim


Wednesday, September 25, 2019

20 Facts you did not know about me

1. I was born on February first, which make me an Aquarius... However, I don't really believe in the whole horoscope thing but then again they say no Aquarius does so...  yeah.

2. Food for me has to be either spicy or sweet. If not, then it's all just tasteless at that point. 

3. I can't dance to save my life. Well I think I can, but everyone else is saying I can't. 
4. I seriously have a shopping problem. I'm getting help don't worry (Jesus).
5. I'm a Christian. Christianity is a big part of my life. Having Jesus is the only thing that keeps me sane and inoffensive. 
6. I love taking naps.
7. I’m deadly allergic to sea food. Fun fact; My (Haitian) mom did not believe me when I told her I wasn't feeling good after eating shrimps. It took a trip to the emergency room for her to realize I was seriously allergic to seafood. She said people in her family and quite frankly, Haitian people in general do not have allergies and that it was a white people ting. (Her words not mine)
8. I used to hate my ears. 
9. I really love being short (I'm 5'3)! Sometimes I even wish I was a little bit shorter. 
10. I started my YouTube channel in April 2016, because I was bored and it's the best decision I took ever! Check it out!
11. Alcohol makes sleepy. No turn up for me. If I have even a bit alcohol in my system, it’s lights out. 
12. I met my Husband (Jo) at Church 11 years ago. He was playing piano and I was singing. It was a perfect match and plus I have a thing for musicians. (I'm not that great of a singer)
13. I have a big sister and I'm low-key still jealous of her long thick beautiful hair. 
14. I was ferociously attacked by a pigeon when I was about 7 or 8 years old, I think about that bastard every time I eat chicken. 
15. I hate taking pictures and showing my face. I know it sounds crazy but I'm the least photogenic person ever and, I always manage to make the weirdest facial expressions. 
16. I sleep with the light on. 
17. My laugh is loud, very loud. 
18. I hate downtown, Crowds scare me and being in a moving unorganized crowd makes me extremely anxious. 
19. I used to read a lot, in average 8 book per months, but then this thing called the internet and YouTube turned me into an illiterate. 
20. I love traveling and I hope to be able to do it more often in the future. My favorite place to go is Jamaica.  You should go check out my article on the 7 Reasons to travel to Jamaica.

Hehe that's it!
Sophia Tim (Pardon the french girl)
On that note aurevoir bisous bisous.


Monday, September 23, 2019

Meet My Instagram Husband

In today’s special post I decided to do something a bit different. I want to introduce you to my personal Instagram husband. His name is Jo and he is actually my husband and we’ve been married for a little over 5 years now and best friend for about 10. He is the most incredible human being on this planet! He has a genuine and pure heart. He is patient and kind and it's an honor for me to call him my husband and even more now to call him my Instagram husband. I decided to ask him a few questions about his role as my Instagram husband. Let’s see what he really thinks about all this! 

Be sure to follow me on Instagram and on Youtube. 

How would you describe your role as an Instagram/YouTube husband?
“That’s actually a great question! If I could describe my role I would probably say it is like I am on a unicycle while holding 2 baby puppies on my left and juggling 3 bowling pins on my right hand. But seriously, I would describe this role as leveling up. Starting this journey has shown me all the potential that is really inside me. I’ve unlocked new levels of artistic creativity, technical savvy, multitasking, and patience. Oh yes, a lot of patience. I must say the whole experience is pretty exciting watching myself grow in ways I never thought would interest me as much as they do. No I am in no way a pro at this photography or videography thing but the process of growing in this is pretty awesome!”

 What do you prefer about it?
“I am a bit of a Gear/Tech junkie, like most men on this planet. I mean who doesn’t love unboxing a brand-new device! Also, I have to say I love reading the comments that people leave on my wife’s IG page and YouTube channel. They hilariously amazing! Did I mention that love the bloopers! I also, enjoying learning new things like the term focal length. I mean did you know that focal length means…  Wait? Am I rambling I feel like I am rambling. You know my wife tells me that my answers are way to long and I should really learn to tone it down some.”

 What do you hate the most about it?
“Hate! What do you mean hate? Who said anything about hate? What does that even mean?... Wait!? Is my wife going to be reading this? Because if she is I want her to know that I love everything about being an IG/ YouTube hubby! Well… Almost everything. Well of course there is this one thing she does. I would not say that I hate but let’s just say strongly I dislike it. You know what I’m a just keep it real with y’alll. I can’t stand taking pictures or recording videos and she makes this face like I am forcing her to unload FedEx trucks full of big heavy boxes in the middle of the hottest summer day at 1:27 in the afternoon and she is extremely bothered. Ok, well that might be a little over the top. However, sometimes we can do 100 nice shots and she does not like any of them. Well booboo, next time just relax your face and just smile, and we will be just fine.”

Did you know anything about photography before?
“Duh! I knew that as long as my fingers could press the camera/record button that meant that I was a professional baby! No, but seriously I knew very little to nothing. I am still learning with each photo shoot or each YouTube recording session. I’m actually a musician who went to school for IT. However the great thing with technology today I can hop on YouTube or Udemy and follow some really great courses to help me out.”

 Can you describe photo sessions with Sophia?
“Pretty adventurous! We try to drive around the city finding cool spots to take shots. A lot of times we discover some of the most beautiful places. At the same time though we have our fair share of unsuccessful shooting days. What’s important is to try to make the most of each experience and try to learn a bit more each time.”

Do you have any tips/advice for IG husbands?
“Yeah definitely! I guess my top tips for someone who wants to start this journey are:

1.    If you are not a professional photographer please know that it is ok. I am far from being a pro but what I lack in professionalism I make up for in enthusiasm, in support of my wife’s desires and eagerness to learn and get better. The first few posts were rough but I am getting a little better with each shot.

2.    Try your best to schedule any photo or video sessions. This is extremely important because a lot of people work, go to school, or also pursue other passions of their own. Knowing that, it is important to sit down together and reach a compromise on your availability to help out as an IG hubby.

3.        Learn, Learn, Learn, and did I forget to mention learn? This is really going to help you tremendously because the more you know about video, pictures, manipulating light, angles, and especially the device you are using whether is an Android/ iOS device or a DSLR.  This will help you save so much time and will ensure a successful photo/video session. Again, I am not saying I am some expert. Not the case at all! However, I am willing to take out a bit of time during my week to watch a couple of YouTube tutorials, read a few articles to try to get better at this every week.
4.    This one is for the models in front of the camera. Please make sure to take out the time to let your IG hubby know you appreciate them. It might seem silly or insignificant but a Thank You goes a long way a long way in this business!

5.    Get a smart phone with portrait mode! Life saver when you are first starting out. This will at least help save you time while you are learning. I am currently using a Google Pixel XL 3 and sometimes the software on the phone supersedes my skill with a camera. 

6. Follow pages on IG that interest your significant other. For example my wife loves photos from @inthefrow so I follow her page also to see what makes her pictures or videos look great. Sometimes you can find out what camera settings they used for a particular shot. While we are on the topic of following IG accounts, you should also try to follow some good photographer. I recommend at @harrison, @dapper_cards ( He is from Montréal) and @gilmarphotos.”

7. Don’t be afraid to laugh and enjoy the silly moments because there may be a lot of those.

These are just some of the tips that have helped me along the way. Notice how most of what I am saying revolves around being willing to learn. I cannot stress enough how important this is. ”

In your opinion is your wife her true self on social media? Tell us why.
“Yes, I would say. Anyone who watches my wife will agree that she is really silly and pretty excited about life. She is not afraid to slip and fall and laugh about it. She really embraces the perfect little imperfections of life. Most of which reflected in her bloopers.”

What is your real job and personal hobbies.
“I work as an integration specialist testing hardware and code for a company that makes software for IP-based security devices like video cameras, doors, and licence plate readers. On the side I am a musician. I love playing piano, a little bit of bass, drums, and a pinch of guitar.”

 Well there you have it ladies and gentlemen! I hope you enjoyed this interview thank you again for following me here on Pardon the french girl it means the world to me (us) :).

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