It’s gotten really cold. Not below zero yet but it’s this wet cold that creeps in every layer of clothing and leaves you shaking. While it is not very comforting it has a message. Winter is coming. So i figured it is time to write down my winter bucket list 2017.
Spread some “Random acts of kindness” in the upcoming season where everyone is just hectic and stressed. I currently think of: smiling to the cashier, meeting the postman half way, let an old lady in front of the line in the post office, etc. something like that.
Dance in the snow
Ice skating. It was on the list last year bit it wasn’t cold enough. Fingers crossed.
Sew a lot: finish the dress, make two sweaters and there is this tote idea in my mind for ages.
Yes, I think the Holiday Season has started for me. Today I want to share another tutorial for this those cute beech nut bells in red and white with you.
I really don’t know how I came up with the idea. I think I was talking one of my walks through the park or my favorite cemetery and just saw those beech nuts lying all around on the ground. Don’t they look like little calyx or bells? And then weeks later I was shopping and came across those festive little red bells.
Suddenly a picture popped up in my mind and I just had to do it. But let me tell you. It is not that easy to find beech nuts early in November. They were hiding right under all the wet leaves. Of course I had to go hunting for them when it was drizzling and muddy.
Anyhow I did found some. I put them on the radiator to dry and to open them up a bit more. The rest was pretty simple.
I painted the beech nut white. I used regular acrylic paint.
Got my little bell.
I used silver wire and made an eyelet on one end (for the bell) and a knot on the other end.
I painted the wire a hot red with nail polish as I think it looks better.
I assembled the wire and the bell.
I heated up the glue gun and gave a good amount of glue in the beech nut and stuck the wire knot in it. Sometimes I had to adjust the length a bit so it looked good. I just wrapped a bit more wire around the know until I liked it.
I glued some ribbons on as well. If I do it again I might choose white and smaller ones but hey it is very festive and Holiday like.
What do you think? Would you hang them on your tree? I would. Maybe not red and white but white and silver (who would have thought HAHA).
Writing my advent wreath posts is the sole reason this blog exists. Yes, pretty sure it is true. This year I want to share a Pine Needle Wreath with you. Not a regular pine wreath but one made of needles.
You may wonder what the difference is? Oh there is one! Mainly time. But lets start from the beginning!
Remember my post about the Pine Needle Star? Ever since than I had the idea in my mind that those needles are meant for more. I knew I wanted to do something with them when they were still green and fresh and looked vibrant. Then I came across this idea on Pinterest. I was thinking about doing that but of course I didn’t get around.
Some things need time. So I thought about it a bit more. And then it hit me – somewhere, sometime. Use the single needles and glue them to a wreath form.
OK, so tutorial this year is pretty simple and all you need is:
♥ wreath form, preferably wrapped green
♥ glue gun
♥ pine needles, I used black pine needles but you could use other that are bit longer
♥ time, lots of time and a bit more time oh and don’t forget patience
1. I started out wrapping my wreath form with a white paper because I lacked fabric.
If I could redo it I would use a dark green fabric. As the wreath will be see through at certain places depending on your viewing angle it really doesn’t look too great. I had to glue in more decorations than I originally intended to due to that.
2. Start glueing pine needles in little batches to the form. Layering them so that you cover the entire wreath form.
The smaller your wreath form the shorter your needles should be. Otherwise the wreath looks rather messy.
3. Once you are done you can seal the needles from loosing color with simple hairspray.
And that is about all you need to do. Unfortunately it does take forever. This advent wreath is by far the most work intense one I have done in the last 15 years. I think I worked a solid 8 hours on it. However I love the look of it and think it was worth all the time. This idea was in my head for so long it just need to be executed.
Now let me know, would you attempt it or is it just too much effort?
I mentioned that I attended the blogst conference last weekend. One fun thing about this conference is that during coffee breaks you not only drink coffee but can craft. Because those sponsors are cool. They don’t just set up a booth no they set up crafting tables for the attendees to get creative. One of the sponsors was PonyHütchen a natural cosmetics shop from Berlin. And we were able to make our own vegan bath bombs.
It was so very simple and most all ingredients are either already in your house or are available in any grocery or drugstore. Now that does sound good right. Not only because the product really is natural if you can actually (almost) eat it. So I asked Lucie (head of marketing & Berlin store fairy) if I can share this simple DIY with you here. She said yes!
So lets get started (recipe makes two vegan bath bombs):
❤︎ 100 g baking soda (Natron)
❤︎ 50 g citric acid (Zitronensäure)
❤︎ 35 g corn starch (Maisstärke)
❤︎ 15 ml almond oil (Mandelöl)
Now it is really simple. You have to mix well. And by well I mean well. If it is not really mixed the bomb might break when drying up. So take you sweet time, let your mind wonder and start relaxing.
Then press the mixture into a form. We had some half balls but I guess you could easily use silicone mutton of praline forms. However it needs to be packed really good. Otherwise it will all crumble.
Now it needs to dry over night. And ready to go. Wrap them up, gift or just enjoy a bath yourself.
This is a wonderful gift idea. It could also be a cool idea for a girlfriends night. Oh the possibilities.
I’ve heard from PonyHütchen before the event but I was happy to have gotten a better idea what they are doing. I have to admit I am usually not the biggest fan of natural cosmetics. Not because I think it is not good valid cosmetics more so because of the fanatics behind it. Fortunately this was not the case it was just lots of love, enthusiasm and joy. I loved the displays they put up in the bathrooms and the packaging is so cute too. It is nice to see such a young fun brand.
After I tried their hand cream at the event – it smells amazing and makes the smoothes hands, really no joking here – I was really happy to find a sample of the deodorant cream in the goodie bag. I will give this a good try during my business trips as I like to travel with the smallest amount of weight and it comes in a tiny cute tin. I am excited how it works.
Anyhow, I just wanted to share this discovery from my weekend with you. If you are into vegan handmade cosmetics this could definitely be something for you as they do have some decorative things too. And they own an online shop for everyone not in Berlin. I am not sure about worldwide shipping though.
Now I am wondering, have you ever tried making cosmetics yourself?
I was aiming for 20 books to read this year after I really surprised myself last year with 45. I managed to almost hit last year’s count again – I am currently at 40. However not all of them were that good but I wanted to share my favorite books of 2017. There will be two parts as it has been a good reading year.
I have this personal quest. I will read many of the debut authors and free books on Amazon. And then I will clap myself on the back when those books will later be sold for money and I found a good one for free and was one of the first to read and discover. Well it is a tough job but I kinda love it.
Also I come across books I would otherwise not read. And I have to admit most of them are really easy reads so I can manage my reading goal.
Anyway, lets get into my finds for 2017 that I can really recommend and where I spent money on sequels or further books of the author.
Carrion by Betsy Reavley
If I have to sum up this book in one word it would be: disturbing.
The story starts with a very rough opening (car accident and death) and is pretty dark throughout (mental illness). However it is very engaging and I could not put down the book because I wanted to know all the puzzle pieces and get the full dimension of the story. I was intrigued with the different aspects of the character’s and how they develop throughout the story line.
I also like how the language of the author transformed to my own mood and while I was reading this book I was going through emotions like anxiety and anger and I felt how I clenched my jaw while reading because it was so intense.
Over all I can definitely recomment reading! A good writing style and engaging storyline and an interesting topic you don’t come across often.
Ice (Dr. Leah Andrews and Jack Hobson Thriller) by Kevin Tinto
This book was written a bit like an movie – an adventure movie. Fast pasted and a bit over the top but very entertaining. Leah is an archeologist specialized in cliff dwelling settlements of Southern Mexico and her ex Jack an extrem athlete/arctic expert. They end up on a mission with a millionaire at the end of the world between a political conflict. I learnt a lot of survival stuff and you can tell that the author is an athlete himself.
What a wonderful gem! Seriously this book is different and lovely and stands out from all the other (free) Amazon romance books.
Hope and love across oceans and time without being cheesy and flat. Great characters, wise words and just magical. My advice: read! Perfect for the upcoming holidays.
My rating: **** free eBook (unfortunately it is currently unavailable so keep a look out)
House of Cry by Linda Bleser
Starting this book I expected something totally different. I was positively surprised.
I found this book a bit dark and the serious topic (suicide) took me by surprise and yet it was so full of hope and promise and love. An interesting intriguing combination, something I haven’t come across, ever?! It’s a book I won’t forget as soon as I finished it.
So definitely read it!
A time-travel romance set in Scotland in the year 1651.
TV Journalist Taylor doesn’t believe in magic and has a show where she discovers the truth behind legends. Of course she ends up in one. After this rather predictable start the story is quite engaging. All about how to adapt to a new era, change history, discovering ones own heritage and falling in love. The main characters are very likable, well crafted and have their flaws but are very likable. It is not all sunshine and rainbows more like struggle and reality. And while reading you learn about Scottish history.
The Medium (Emily Chambers Spirit Medium #1) by C.J. Archer
I am usually not really into paranormal suspense but figured I could read something different for a change. It was entertaining and I was not disappointed. I might even found a new guilty pleasure. I defiantly discovered a new author. I like her style of writing.
Emily is a bit weird. She can talk to ghosts. And a ghost was assigned to her because he can’t cross to the other side. Well and there is a demon. And some romance. Again I would read the sequel but hoping it shows up on kindle unlimited.
The Watchmaker’s Daughter (Glass and Steele #1) by C.J. Archer
My second book I read by this author and it did not disappoint.
India lost her father – a watchmaker and also her inheritance as her fiancee stole it and left her. A girl in London of 1890 is depending on man – not so India Steele. It’s a combination of fantasy, mystery and romance. I would read the sequel.
I was having this one on my kindle for a while as gaming is not so much my thing but then I figured I give it a try. And while I found the setting and the thought process I had really interesting and worth mulling over I have not picked up the sequel. I believe it is a good book and would recommend it. Iit is just not my kind of entertainment.
Now will you share your discoveries of 2017 with me.
*If you buy a book through one of the Amazon links I will receive a small provision. This would help me keep this blog alive and cover a few of the administrative costs. Thank you. Or maybe I just buy a new book, who knows…