Currently … July

Hi! What would be more fitting right in the middle of the month than a little update on what’s been going on for me? I’ve been seeing this survey on many blogs and decided to jump on the train, too.

Current Book: : Gold by Chris Cleave. Deeming Little Bee one of the best books I read last year I can’t tell why I didn’t find out about this one any earlier. Once again Cleeve delivered an absorbing read written with a great eye for the fine details that I had a hard time putting down.  I may or may not have saved the last few pages just so I could include it as my “current” one here [okay, and because I have a hard time letting a good book end]. Let me know if you’re interested in a review though I can promise you it’s a great one.

Read on my Kindle while on the train.

Read on my Kindle while on the train.

Current Music: Belle & Sebastian  – Another sunny day

… because isn’t that what everybody hopes for at the moment? A whole-hearted musical yes to Summer!

Current Guilty Pleasure: Sleeping in. Truly sleeping in. No 8.30 AM wake-ups for this girl … Hey, I have to make use of it while I can, right?!

Current Nail Color: Essie’s Cute as a button. What’s not to like about coral?

Why does my hand look that creepy?

 Current Drink: Tea. Yes, I did notice it’s actually Summer but I still won’t give up on my daily cups of Sweet Chili tea.

Current Food: Slow-roasted tomatoes. A first-timer from this past weekend and while they take way too long for my impatient personality they are SO good. Slow-roasted – fast-eaten :D.

slow-roasted

Also, all the fresh strawberries I can get my hands on. Making the most of Summer’s bounty.

Strawberries

Current Favorite Show:  None. Though the second season of “New Girl” has finally started being aired last week and I might get into that again.

Current Wish List: I’d really appreciate a built-in thought recorder for my brain. It’s infuriating to notice how easily I can draft whole letters or posts in my head while out on walks or runs. Yet when I’m sitting down at my laptop everything’s gone, gone, gone. Somebody please invent such a recorder!?

Current Needs: More time. To work on my to-do list(s) but also spend with friends before we all drift apart

Current Triumphs:

Finishing my last class in university. Ever. It’s a bittersweet triumph, though, seeing as this means saying goodbye to many friends soon.

Current Bane of My Existence: See current guilty pleasure. Sleeping in is great but it bring out the night owl in me even more which in turn throws my days’ structure totally off. Something to work on … One day, yes, one day, I’ll be a morning person ;).

Current Indulgence:

Current indulgence

Frozen dark chocolate dessert  ice cream with hazelnut butter. Lots of hazelnut butter. Seriously: if you never tried freezing Alpro Soya desserts – do it now!

Current Blessing: Aside from a  wonderful family always being there for me I’m feeling incredibly blessed for all the friends blends I made through blogging the past months. Without getting all sappy here I just want to say a huge thank you to all of you!

Current Slang: Call me boring but: none. Or at least none I could think of. Can I blame English not being my mother tongue?

Current Outfit: 

Current outfit July

Polkadots, actually. And yes, I swear that’s accidental and I DO wear other clothes, too. And these new shoes – in coral no less. Usually, I prefer shoes with at least a little heel to feel taller but these were great for a city trip with lots of walking.

Current Excitement(s): With my sister’s wedding at the beginning of August, me graduating from university and starting an internship there’s so much to be excited about.

Current Mood: 

Happy. Nervous. Excited. A mixed bag of feelings in this transition period. If we’re talking this very moment, though: happy and thankful.

Looking at all of the above I’d say July has overall been quite marvelous for me so far. Thanks to Katie for reminding us to focus on the marvelousness in life at all times.

MiMM_new

Happiness inducing today: Meeting one of my cousins and catching up over ice cream.

What are you currently reading? Recommendations on which book to pick up next are welcome.

What are current excitements in your life?

Are you a night owl or an early bird?

Advertisements

Simple Sunday Serenity

It’s amazing how much things can change within a week. Just seven days ago I experienced a serious case of the Mondays Sundays  – I blame the weather! – and now? Perfectly blissful enjoyment that’s well worthy of the label marvelous.

MiMM_new

Sleeping in until … a time that I’d be ashamed to admit in the blog world where 8 AM is considered a late wake-up call :). And then I even spent a bit more time in bed reading. It’s Sunday after all and a good book is the perfect start to this day of the week in my opinion.

Reading in bed

Moving on in my day in a productive fashion I got out the cleaning agents, mop and remaining fun gadgets. Call me weird but I actually enjoy cleaning or rather the way it changes my mood. Nothing like a good cleaning session to make me feel a bit more accomplished for the day already. That’s not to say I’d mind my roommate taking over part of these duties. We usually do bathroom and kitchen interchangeably but since she’s been on holiday for the past week and a half it was all up to me.

Cleaning

Having a longer day of classes on Monday the weekend and Sunday in particular also happens to be the best day to bake. It’s no secret some sweet goodness can make the most boring of all seminars that wee bit more endurable. Enter a mixing bowl, a little bit lot of chocolate and some Oreos and the party is about to start. Any guesses on what it might have turned into? It’s also no secret that calories consumed while baking don’t count. If you’d asked me a while ago my answer might have been different but now? Not missing out on the best part of baking anymore.

Oreo Brownies in the make

Aside from my baking session – the finished product of which you’ll see in this week’s WIAW  – and delicious new lunch creations I also occupied myself with some non-food activities. Some research and writing for university happened. To get a little more creative, though, I did also pick up stationary and paper and got started on a letter to a friend. Got started because I hardly ever write a whole letter in a single piece. Instead, I like to compile it over the course of a few days randomly adding thoughts and happenings as I go along. It’s no surprise these end up being rather lengthy letter at times but who’d complain, right?

Letter and studying

Last but not least I finished my serene Sunday with a walk around the lake. Admittedly braving a pretty strong breeze but it was nice to get out nonetheless.

Happiness inducing today: Seeing a dog get all excited about running around at the lake. So cute!

What does your ideal Sunday look like?

Do you tend to write letters in one go or over the course of a few days?

Polkadots & Ponderings #1

Happy Monday, everybody! I hope your week is starting in a truly marvelous fashion. Thanks to our lovely host Katie for making every Monday start out a bit brighter for the 5oth time already today!

MiMM_new

After enjoying these kind of random thought-posts on other blogs I thought I’d start my own version of them, too. Just a potpourri of little facts [hence the “polka-dots” and yes, I’m aware that’s the correct way to spell the word yet I prefer my version ;)] and thoughts [ponderings] floating around in my mind.

1. Starting right out with a polka-dotted confession: the little dots make an appearance in my life every.single.day. Not that I was wearing the same clothes all of the time but I have polka-dotted plates, cups, seat cushions, a scarf, a Kindle pocket sewn by my sister, … Some might call it an obsession, I call it living up to my [blog world] name ;).

Little bowl

2. Does anybody else remember collecting stickers as a child? For me, it was mainly Disney characters (Pocahontas!) or horses. Oh the excitement and eagerness to spend my pocket money on a single packet every week. German grocery stores caught hold of that clever marketing idea and bring out new series of sticker collections every now and then. The clue: to get a package – unless you want to shell out all of your pocket money earnings – your purchases at the store have to reach a certain sum. For somebody like me making lots of smaller purchases throughout the week rather than one large that means I hardly ever get a package. So thanks to the cashiers giving me the sticker packets of customers ahead of me in line who don’t want them.

Sticker collection

3. Fresh herbs make everything taste better. Why I hadn’t bought a basil plant in a while is beyond me but it was one of the best recent [food] purchases made.  Go and buy fresh basil if you don’t have any right now :)!

Basil

4. Flowers make me happy. Simple as that.

Orchids

5. I can’t remember the last time I wore pants prior to last weekend at my parents’ when we headed out for a bike tour on a rainy and cold day. Who says you can’t wear tights in winter? Actually, I find them to keep me warmer than trousers. Does anybody else notice that?

Warm tights

6. Library waiting lists suck – especially when you’re the last one in line. But some books are well worth the wait ..

7. And that brings me to the next point: the awesome book I mentioned recently. Well worth the six + months I had to wait for it: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. Harold FryIn case you haven’t heard about it before: The protagonist Harold Fry, recently retired and stuck in a boring daily grind, receives a letter of an old college, Queenie, saying she had cancer and was about to die in a hospital a thousand kilometers away. Unsure what to respond Harold writes a short meaningless note leaving the house to simply post it into the mailbox closest to his house. But then – unconsciously at first – he just keeps walking. Something inside his has clicked and he becomes convinced that if he’s able to walk to the hospital Queenie will continue to live and he’ll be able to thank her for a huge favour she did him decades ago. Little by little the reader gets to know the background of Harold’s decision, the reasons for why he and his wife have drifted apart during the years of their marriage. Soon enough it becomes clear that Harold isn’t doing his pilgrimage with the sole intent of seeing Queenie one last time but for a much bigger purpose: to come to terms with his whole life.

Following along Harold’s journey and seeing his development from a prim character to a warmhearted and open-minded person was amazing. The story also shows that sometimes in life it’s not so much about reaching your original goal but about the journey towards it. So if you’ve been looking for a great read, go and pick up a copy!

8. Reading the book I couldn’t help but note that this story once again shows how awesome walks are. I might not solve any life problems on mine. But simply getting plenty of fresh air paired with a nice steady movement has helped me clear my mind many times before.

9. Turning my iPod into shuffle mode is one of my favourite ways of using it. It’s amazing how many songs I’d forgotten about I happen to stumble upon. In case you don’t mind I’ll just go ahead sharing a glimpse into the secret life of my iPod in these kind of posts. A recent find was this song the album which it belonged to was given to me by a friend – and we’re not talking a girl but boy [!] here … Be prepared to fall off your chair laughing. Did you watch the movie this is from?

10. Inspirational quotes are on my happy list.

  1. SourceSource

Happiness inducing today: Turning on the radio to a good song being played.

Did you collect stickers as a child? Which ones?

Have you read any great books lately?

Pants or tights? Do any of you agree the latter keep you warmer or is it just me?

Trying to switch it up intuitively

First off: Thank you so much for all of your kind and supportive comments on my last post! While resting felt good reassurance was definitely needed still. It feels good to know many of you are advocating taking as many rest days as needed – not following a strict schedule.

Wait, did you come here for a specific reason today ;)? Okay, okay … let’s get onto the food! Not before thanking Jenn, though. Thanks for hosting What I ate Wednesday once again!

WIAW

Trying to exercise more intuitively was – as you might have guessed already – linked to my recent trials in Intuitive Eating. Inspired by many lovely blogging ladies like Heather and Meg I finally picked up my copy of Intuitive Eating again. I’ve admittedly had this book sitting on my nightstand for several months a while already but hadn’t really committed myself to the challenge yet. As of now I can’t pride myself with any huge successes yet but I want to keep trying.

Greek yogurt with peanut  and coconut flour, banana flakes and maple syrup that got even more decadent …

Greek yogurt with peanut and coconut flour, banana flakes and maple syrup that got even more decadent …

Eating intuitively also means questioning my go-to dishes to me. So while Blueberry baked Oats had been on the menu for breakfast for quite a while I wasn’t feeling them anymore lately. What’s a girl to do? Experiment obviously! The first time I had above Greek yogurt combo it tasted good but my stomach was undecided. The second day it hit the spot and the third …

… by adding chocolate sauce – because a girl needs her chocolate fix in the morning already.

… by adding almond butter and chocolate sauce – because there’s never too much chocolate.

Well, not even plenty of Heather’s healthy chocolate sauce which, by the way, is totally addictive was able to satisfy me that day. I’m not sure about the reason yet but I guess we just don’t crave the same every day.

When in doubt go with old favourites after all. Trying to stick with changing it up, though, I prepared a dish I had found way back and not eaten in quite a while. Yet another one not winning prices for appearance but making up in taste all the more.

One of the richest, most decadent casseroles I’ve had to date and completely vegan.

One of the richest, most decadent casseroles I’ve had to date and completely vegan.

If you haven’t tried this Creamy Eggplant Creole yet you seriously have to. Believe me: It’s totally worth the extra work of roasting the eggplant. Seeing as eggplant’s on offer this week I won’t keep myself from having it again – sorry but rules like changing it up can be broken bended for exceptional dishes like this ;).

As I semi-promised ending every WIAW post on a sweet note here’s this week’s. With Spring bringing slightly warmer temperatures a friend of mine spontaneously suggested getting frozen yogurt. Which is still quite the novelty around here so don’t even ask for fancy flavours: plain tart is all we can get. There’s a bit more to say about this frozen yogurt date but I’ll leave that for another post :).

Frozen yogurt

Do you consider yourself an Intuitive Eater?

Have you tried any new food combinations or recipes lately?

Overall: How have you been feeling lately?

MIMM: Fabulous February [favourites]

[Grammar nerd alert: Can’t get enough alliteration in my life.]

Yes, you read that right. I know it’s almost too late to post February favourites by now but as there were quite a few fabulous things and happenings I’ll still do it. Which better occasion to do so than Marvelous in my Monday?! Thanks to Katie for hosting!

MiMM_new

Favourite beauty product

Thanks to my fantastic American pen pal who spoiled me with goodies earlier in February I finally got to experience the awesomeness that is Bath & Body Works.  Their Honey Autumn Apple Lotion scents sooo good.

Honey Autumn Apple

Favourite tea

Cinnamon Apple Spice

While I’m usually not keen on fruity teas at all Celestial Seasoning’s Cinnamon Apple Spice flavor is a fabulous exception. Warming, naturally sweet and just delightful it’s one of those teas I can’t get enough of.

I’ve been bugging a local store selling several Celestial Seasoning’s products about ordering this flavor but while they promised it they never did. Talk about bad customer service. Once again my pen pal stepped in and mailed me not only two large boxes of that flavour but also some of this …

Sugar Cookie

Sugar Cookie Tea!

She got this for herself after I recommended it having heard the whole blog world rave about it. Teasing me she pretended she wouldn’t be able to fit it into the box anymore. Such a sweet surprise to open the package to this one, too. Granted, I might not have assumed the taste to be reminiscent of sugar cookies had I not known the name. But it certainly tastes fantastic and I totally get what all the hype is about now :).

Favourite blend

Hoping to get back to the lovely restaurant soon - not alone for sure :).

Hoping to get back to the lovely restaurant soon – not alone for sure :).

Okay, there are way too many sweet people in the blog world to play favourites. But having met Kat in February I can definitely say she’s a fabulous one I hope to meet again soon! Getting to know alike minds is one of my main reasons to blog and I hope to meet more blends in the future.

Favourite book

Kindle reading

Reading everybody’s enthusiastic reviews during the past months I finally got “The Happiness Project” for my Kindle. I’m usually skeptical of books like this but am enjoying it a lot so far. In case you’re wondering why I haven’t finished it yet: I think it’s one of those books to read slowly trying to incorporate the advice in your own life. Yet another topic for a future post, I guess 😉 – not that there weren’t enough I’ve promised you already. I will get to those soon, I promise!

 

Favourite trip

The famous "Ampelmännchen" spotted on a shirt at the flea market.

The famous “Ampelmännchen” spotted on a shirt at the flea market.

Visiting Berlin was definitely one of my highlights in February. Funnily enough I wasn’t even to keen on going there when I was younger wondering what all the rage was about. But especially during the past years I’ve grown quite fond of the city. It’s an interesting place with many things to see and do as well as good food to eat, obviously ;). Traveling with my mum was the cherry on top. Fingers crossed we’ll be going again soon!

What were some of your highlights in February?

Which is your favourite flavor of Celestial Seasoning’s tea?

Marvelous in my Monday: Making the little things count

Happy Monday!

Marvelous

 

Done! I had my last exam today and I can’t even tell you how good it feels. Now it’s onto writing four essays and an article but it was nice to be able to cross this of my list, still.

 

Admittedly, the accompanying doziness doesn't make a bed a good place to study. But it IS seriously comfy.

Admittedly, the accompanying doziness doesn’t make a bed a good place to study. But it IS seriously comfy.

If you had asked me in the morning how my weekend was I’d have been likely to answer: Boring. Annoying. Not eventful. Well,  studying isn’t exactly anybody’s favourite way to spend the last days of the week any day.

 

Getting wild with my newly purchased colourful post-its. Hey, I never claimed to be normal.

Getting wild with my newly purchased colourful post-its. Hey, I never claimed to be normal.

But then I got thinking what I had actually done and noticed there were several good things in this weekend after all. It’s counting the little things that matters. Let’s get onto the small things that gave my weekend at least a bit of marvelousness.

Nothing like baking cookies just for yourself. These were so good and the first time in a long while I baked something (sweet, at least) just for myself. I’m known to bake for friends all of the time but for myself? Not so much. This clearly needs to change …

Yet more proof of my addiction to coconut flour.

Yet more proof of my addiction to coconut flour.

Also marvelous was playing with my neighbors little baby daughter while her mum was showing the flat to potential new tenants. Thinking of them moving out makes me sad, though.

Running in the snow was a great way to refresh my mind amidst the studying, too. Call me weird but I actually enjoyed running in the cold for a few days. Sure, for some – hello, Canadians – temperatures of around -7 °C/19 ° F aren’t cold at all but for me … It’s getting warmer again, though, but I’m not complaining. Snow is nice but I could clearly do without the cold.

View from my window. Now that it's thawing I'll miss the snow - but not the cold.

View from my window. Now that it’s thawing I’ll miss the snow – but not the cold.

 

Starting a new book that sucked me in right from the first pages. While this might happen not too seldomly I often loose interest after the first chapters. Not with this book. So if you’re looking for a good read I’d definitely recommend “Secret daughter”.

Secret daughter

 

Cold days meant lots of tea and that’s something I never say no to. I’m not a coffee drinker at all but spotting new tea flavours at the organic supermarket gets me excited every time.

That's just part of my collection of teas. I surely buy new ones too often.

That’s just part of my collection of teas that I keep adding new ones to.

And last but not least tomorrow is going to be marvelous! It’s my birthday and my mum  is coming to the city to take me and two very good friends out for lunch. Very low-key but I’m going to extend it to Birthday week and celebrate a bit more when visiting my parents at the weekend.

I hope you’re having a great Monday (evening/night for me already :D)!

 

Do you find yourself overlooking small happy things in everyday life, too?

Tell me one little thing that made your weekend marvelous! Or, if something super exciting happened : one big thing :).

Which book are you currently reading?