Family time and facing yeast fears

Be thankful for what you have, don’t yearn for what you don’t. 
Something that I’d like to think I’m quite good at. If I give into those thoughts lingering in my mind or have a particularly bad day – rather week – I can think of a many things I don’t have. Most of the time, though, I’m aware of how blessed I am. Hearing about the harsh contrast in the life of somebody else once again both made me wish I could do more good than just small favours for others. And realize [once again] be even more thankful for all I have. Not necessarily focusing on materialistic things here.
Anyway, this very mindset seems absent whenever I reflect on past weeks. Rather than seeing the wonderful opportunity to spend time with my family I see a lot of unchecked items on my to-do list. It’s something I wish was different because it keeps me from truly enjoying the days with them when I constantly worry about my unfinished to-do lists.  Sunday afternoons/nights don’t do my mind any good and I’d be better of not writing these kind of posts at that time lest I scare all of you away.
How about we just jump right into another Week in Review with Meg and Miss Ave? Sounds good?! I thought so.

 

Week in Review

 

Some of what happened in the past seven days: I. ..

Worked. Technically the same as usual but it was an unusually good week. No ropportunity to work in my favourite position this time around, yet acknowledgement from my [male] boss  [the harder to please one] and simply a good flow and conversations with colleagues. This makes such a difference even in less than exciting jobs.

Published two post: a Week in Review revealing the “selfish” side of my random acts of kindness and more good good links.
Took a spontaneous rest from my workout. I haven’t talked about this before – other than mentioning it on a side note – but exercise is a tricky issue for me. While I’m not doing any crazy strenuous or long workouts balance and taking a break out of schedule don’t come easily for me.
Spent time with my family [sister, maternal grandparents, my brother and his girlfriend], including little P. who’s not qute as little anymore. It’s both marvelous and sad how fat he has grown from baby to toddler in seemingly no time. Seeing him walk around in his own when it feels like just yesterday that he crawled through the house makes me want to slow time down …
nephew_toddler in nature
Bought not one but two new books. Those of you who have been around for a while know this is a major accomplishment for me. Spending on myself – food and daily necessities such as toiletries not included – is hard.
Helped a colleague out. She’s been suffering from constant stomach problems for years and finally gotten further tests done lately. Being a blogger and hence – a real advance as I’ve come to find – familiar with more potential causes/illnesses thanthe average German I printed out some information for her [assuming it might be IBS from the symptoms she described] and after her diagnosis – celiac’s disease – showing her some blogs and Instagram accounts. This might sound odd to most of you but these diseases as well as information on how to deal with them or what to eat are mostly unknown around here so she was genuinely lost on how to cook from now on.
Burnt one of my hands when pouring hot water into my thermos from the electric kettle. If you’re having a deja-vue deja-thought moment: true. Yes, I do seem to have a slight, albeit not worrisome, tendency to accidentally hurt myself in the kitchen. This accident was particularly unfortunate as I’m left-handed and guess which hand happened to be involved? Cooling salve and a tight bandage put a damper on my productivity for the next few hours. [The hand is now fine again.]
Dared to work with yeast for the first time. Granted, I have memories of baking a yeast-based cake years ago but that doesn’t really count. Anyway, yeast was still one of the ingredients intimidating me and I had my mind set on conquering it this past week. Thanks to abovementioned incident the making of turned into a family business with my mum, grandma and self-proclaimed yeast expert sister chiming in on the dough prep. As well as my sister graciously offering to do the final kneeding by hand and rolling out the dough. Because there was no hygienic or practical way of doing it for me. Long story short project healthy Almond Striezel [a certain type of strudel] was a huge success. You know it is when all three of your ‘yeast experts’, some of them skeptical of healthy baked goods, give you a thumbs up.
Mandelstriezel_healthy almond Striezel
 Now that leaves me wondering if I should remake and share the recipe on the blog or not. On one hand, I really want to because it passed the taste test of all family members, is suitable even for toddlers because – final point – the whole Striezel contains a mere 3 1/4 or so tablespoons of coconut sugar yet is sweet enough. Woop!
Honest opinion please! Does anybody still bake with yeast these days?
As usual when finishing these posts it’s getting late again so I’ll bid you goodbye for now and wish you a …

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today: The time with P. and the remainder of the family, obviously.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week!

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Selfish acts of kindness

Oh hi, final Monday of February!
Truth be told: Up until shortly ago I was sure about skipping the Week in Review. After a busy week, the weekend with more leisure time led me into some kind of overthinking funk once more. My original intro for this post elaborated on the ruminations of my mind yet I opted against sharing them for the sake of a more positive start into the week.
Here’s the whereabouts of the slightly odd title. In previous Weeks in Review, I’ve frequently mentioned the little favours I’m doing for others. The inclusion of these things wasn’t an attempt to make myself look like the most selfless or sweetest person on earth or fish or compliments [ick]. Seriously? I can be snappier than a snap pea when I’m moody, tired, hangry. In fact, I’m pretty selfish in my acts of kindness. Why? Because I engage in them even more when I’m not feeling the best myself. Doing favours for others is my way to combat unwelcome thoughts and emotions in my life. So the ‘accomplishment in them is – if there’s any; they’re rather little happiness inducers – getting myself out of moodiness.  Two examples in this past week were the ice cream pick-up for my colleagues and calling my aunt. My mind was spinning in these situations and I needed to get out of it. Helping others or doing little things to brighten their days is a way of charging my own happiness batteries. See: selfish. Or maybe a win-win situation? Either way, it’s benefitting me as much as the person I offer help.
Onto the Week in Review with Meg!

Week in Review

 

In the past seven days I …
Worked the usual five times with Monday through Wednesday being downright insanity. We were shorter than short on staff with one of my colleagues sick and the other on holiday. As I mentioned this meant I was working at the front desk with one of my colleagues. Since she had to simultaneously oversee another area of the business there were moments of just me at the reception, two phones ringing and three clients asking for help. It was nuts but nevertheless I enjoyed it far more than my usual job. Stress is strenuous in the moment of but seriously rewarding afterwards. I truly hope I’ll be able to help out at the front desk in the future again.
Published merely one post. Bummer. This week will be better in that you’ll at least get more good good links on Sunday. If time allows I’m hoping to really get up another post prior to that one, though. I miss blogging more regularly and have multiple drafts yet can’t seem to finish them to my satisfaction.
Called my paternal grandma. It had been a while and she actually tried to put me off right away as she’s not feeling well lately. Yet I decided to just chat a little more – did I mention I’m a smidgen stubborn? –  and while it didn’t turn into a really long conversation she was up for it more than initially stated. My grandma is about to turn 90 and since she’s living too far away for  regular visits I at least wanted to exchange a few more sentences. Life is short.
Called my paternal aunt. She in a rough time in life and knowing how much I appreciate a good conversation in those moments I figured I’d call her. Though nothing can really take away her pain right now at the end of the conversation she sounded happier.

Some people work in the important area of cross-cultural communication. As a German blogger settled into the English-speaking blogging community I'm probably dabbling in that field a little, too. But let's be honest: I'm much better at cross-diet communication 😉. Like with these grain-free, vegan and paleo chocolate tartlets. [yes, the recipe is coming to the blog soon] Prior to blogging I didn't know about all the different diets out there. Now that I do I have fun trying to work out recipes suitable for multiple at once. Though I obviously follow a certain lifestyle myself and at that have preferences blogging and noticing the similarities of on first glance opposing diets has made me more open-minded. At the end of the day, the way we eat doesn't change our character. And if we meet and can share good food suitable for our different diets – what's not to like?! Which diet – if any specific one – do you follow and is there any particular reason why you chose it? . . . #vegan #thefeedfeedvegan #grainfree #glutenfree #daswortzumsonntag #paleotreat #chocolateplease #glutinchensatt #vegandeutschland #veganwerdenwaslosdigga #bgbcommunity #schokocontent #sonntagssüß

A post shared by @chocolatea_me on

Baked a new treat for the blog. Yes, I’m aware I owe you many recipes by now. Once I can figure out the lighting situation and decide on a light box I will get those proper pictures and share them. Actually, I did take a few more picturesof these little tartlets that might not be the worst so we’ll see …
Did some laundry for my parents while they were on a three-day holiday plus a load of my own laundry. This involved lots of frustration about the [insert swearword] washing machine fussing around.
Prepared a new batch of healthy Nutella and managed to not burn my finger this time around. Big deal ;).
Prepared another batch of peanut butter the following day. See, I’m slowly working on overcoming the dread of cleaning the Vitamix afterwards.
Got ice cream for my colleagues on Friday. It was a strenuous day for the two of them yet lighter on the paperwork for me – see above mention of being short on staff – so when I was mostly finished with my duties I walked to the ice cream parlor. Just in case you’re wondering: no ice cream for me because I wasn’t in the mood and – like my boss – found the temperature too cold for a frozen treat. Mostly savoury cravings, though.
Ice cream
 [Recycled picure because I obviously didn’t have my camera on hand at work.]
Cleaned the apartment including a thorough mopping of the floors. Not my favourite part of adulting.
Went on daily walks. I need all the fresh air I can get despite the weather not being the best.Umbrellas and scarves were invented for a reason after all.
Meal-prepped while listening to yet more podcasts. I’m really getting into these and givingnew ones a try every week.
Being a little late in writing my review this week the clock is telling me I should end things here to avoid an overly late bed time. So I’ll leave it at that for now and wish you a …

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today:  My morning reading time. I picked up a book I’d set aside not enjoying it much previously and it’s better than I initially thought.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week!

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How to live more intensely or: No week gets left behind

Ever since joining Meg’s Week in Review club I’ve found more significance in individual weeks. It probably sounds odd but prior to listing what I did throughout the previous cycle of seven days life felt like it was – major life events aside – passing by in a steady stream. Sure, some weeks were busier than others, some happier, others heavier. But I wouldn’t have been able to tell you the subtle changes. How did I feel about life two weeks ago?
This also helps me see what works and what doesn’t. In terms of productivity. In terms of sleep [improvement during the week]. In terms of work. It’s some sort of life analysis, laying open the success and the areas of further improvement. Some of the latter unfortunately are recurring themes that I have yet to make significant progress in which frustrates and in a way scares me because life is so fleeting and time the one thing we’ll never be able to get back once it’s passed. But I’m digressing too far for a Week in Review again so let’s stay in the moment for now and then look back at what happened in the past seven days in my life. Don’t forget to tell me about yours in the comments, too.

Thanks as always to Meg for encouraging us to truly see and reflect on every week in our lives. Even if a week – like the past one – holds no memories of major life changes recording our lives like this allows us [bloggers] to look back in time and see “oh hey, that’s when I did that” or “ah, that was fun”.  A little like a photo album minus the plethora of pictures in my case [blogger fail].

In the past week I …

Worked the usual five days, one of those subbing in for my colleague at the front desk again. It’s my new favourite spot – who knew I’d ever say this?? My male boss was still working from home this past week and I’m feeling slightly bad saying it made work that much better. Not that he’s a terrible person, it’s just his vs. her way of working and temperament. Both are nothing short of amazing at the work they do.

Started two new book and picked up an older one I’ve never been able to get into before. After finishing my previous one – it really was the best I ever read and aspects of it have been on my mind every day since – I find it hard to get into new literature. One of the two I started – unfortunately my mum’s birthday gift for me – will likely stay unfinished. As a novel it’s just too light for me despite its in fact serious background topic [life after leucemia]. I’m very happy with Gretchen Rubin’s “Better than before”, though.

Books I

Chatted with the cheese guy. Okay that sounds weird so let me elaborate. There’s this one younger cashier at one of our local grocery stores. Maybe it’s just my impression but I find him to be a little sassy/snobbish and feel somewhat self-conscious when he’s sitting at the checkouts. The other day, my mum asked me to pick up some cheese while I was running errands at said store in anyway and this guy was operating it. For some reason, I decided to make some friendly small talk to eliminate a bit of that previous awkwardness. We’ll see how this works. Either way, I’m the queen of chatting up random people as you might remember. Really, though, who knows whom you might connect with that way?!

Finally took a trip to the glass containers and got rid off empty jars. There were a -lot- of those. I’m surprising myself with how long I can postpone something that takes all of three minutes [plus driving there] for so long every. single. time. Okay, maybe because it’s gross.

Ran a special ‘errand’ for my dad on Saturday at a time inconvenient for me.  Sweetheart that he is he wanted to welcome my mum back from her short weekend getaway with flowers so I rushed into town and the florist’s shop last minute [read: five minutes before their official closing time at 2 PM]. Initially, my dad asked me to pick up a bouquet for myself as a gift, too, but I couldn’t decide [typical] and also wasn’t entirely sure I still had enough money in my purse. It happens.

Flowers

[Not the bouquet I got for my mum but flowers I had in my apartment some time ago]

Finally created a new recipe for the blog. It’s actually a rendition of a old favourite I’d been meaning to try for ages and I’m happy it worked so well. Unfortunately, the pictures I tried to take didn’t turn out so I’ll have to postpone sharing it once again. I know I owe you several recipes already but I’m incredibly frustrated with the lighting situation here [= I need to get myself a light box. Soon  Better yet sooner than soon..]

Prepared a batch of said treats for my mum to bring along on her weekend trip as a birthday gift for my aunt. She’s a Valentine’s Day baby so a little sweet favour seemed appropriate.

Meal prepped while watching/white noise-streaming the first episode of this year’s “Germany’s Next Topmodel”.  I wouldn’t be able to stand it if I was actually watching but it’s a nice enough white noise. I’m not into any kind of celebrity gossip ish so maybe that’s my one guilty pleasure? We all have some, no?

Prepared another batch of my new recipe creation – late on Saturday night while I  simultaneously  …

Proofread the new version of this restaurant’s menu. If you’ve been around for a while you might remember I translated their menu about a year ago  [I think?]. They’ve now made changes to the menu and asked me to proofread the German version and translate it again. Proofreading makes me happy and that fact makes me a grammar nerd but it’s a label I’m fine wearing.

Hoovered and swept the floors in my apartment. Cleaned the sinks. The usual weekly clean-up.

Baked another batch of granola for one of my colleagues.

Walk_sun

Listened to several podcasts. I’m only now getting into English ones. Previously, I’d listened to German ones here and there but noticing how big of a trend they are in the US I’ve been curious about those, too. There are huge differences in between the nationalities so I’m getting both a lesson in listening comprehension and culture. Fascinating.

Overall, it’s been a good week minus letting myself stay up too late on Friday night which messed up my whole weekend/internal clock. It’s a recurring pitfall of my night owl-ish ways I need to work on so now that I say it you get to keep me accountable ;).

While no recipe there will be at least one more post coming your way this week. Sunday’s time for good good links again and I might squeeze in some thinking out loud, too.

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today:  A short walk in the sunshine. It’s cold outside but a little bit of sun always brightens my days.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

What are some of your favourite podcasts?

Tell me about your past week! Highs? Lows?

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Happiness – just a change of perspective?

Another week and: another year in my life. Read: As of Sunday I’m yet another year older wiser. Hopefully wiser. Can we just go with that ;)?

This is about the fourth time I start writing my intro. Fifth if you count the time I did so in my head after a particularly tiring Thursday. What this fact reminded me of is how much timing and perspective matter. As you noticed my previous Monday posts had a rather heavy tone. Written in the depths of Sunday blues’ they reflected the way I saw the past days in a potentially more negative way than they actually were. When we’re tired, sad or anxious we focus more on the bad than all the good that happened. I tried to hold this back as best as possible but it was harder.
Looking back today I’m in a much more elated state.

Sometimes happiness or at least contentment with where we’re at in life really is just about perspective. It might be lowering the expectations we hold for a certain situation, making an effort to overlook the negative experiences in a day/week/year or looking at the smallest of blessings in our lives. The ones we aren’t even consiously taking  not eof anymore in everyday life.

Happiness batteries still filled after a weekend spent with my family, including sweet little P. So with these happy memories still fresh on my mind here’s to another Week in Review with Meg and Ave.

Week in review

Worked five days as usual. Long and not always easy days. As I mentioned in previous posts already we’re currently short in staff lately, particularly the colleague I’m usually sharing duties with. The whole team adapted better to her absence than – I think – most of us guessed. Yet the past week the workload has just kept piling up immensely to a point where it was too much to coordinate and keep up with. Working the front desk agan on Friday I finished a-okay and will return to a long list of to-dos today but I know things will be alright. Longer and tiring work days also led to the fact I …

Posted just once. Not a proud fact to state. I also was mostly absent from the blog world in terms of activity. Sorry for the lack of comments – I’ll make a conscious effort at getting back to it this week. You’ll also see at least one more post on here as I have quite a few little good good links waiting to be shared.

Spent time with my recently graduated to toddler status nephew – his birthday was a mere few days before mine. He’s walking now and we had lots of fun playing hide and seek. Meg will also be pleased to hear cheese is one of his favourite foods ;).

p-and-dad

Went to bed earlier during the week. This – despite still not falling into the range of recommendable hours of sleep per night yet – is a major improvement for me. As you might know I’m a night owl so calling it quits when my energy levels are the highest is hard. There’s still plenty of room for improvement but showing myself I’m capable of changes is a first step.

Bought myself not one but two new books. It had been quite a while since the previous time this happened as I have the hardest time a) deciding on titles and b)spending money on myself. I have to reach a point where my longing for new brain food outweighs my bad conscience.

Whizzed up both a batch of fresh peanut butter and healthy Nutella. Really badly burning the tip of my left thumb in the making of the latter. Not my proudest moment and further proof of the things I do for good food  😉 – or: just how delightful the Nutella is.

homemade-vegan-healthy-nutella

Read at least an hour every day. Even on the hectic days I still keep this as a priority I’m not willing to sacrifice. I’ll tell you about the latest additions to my book shelf once I start reading them but right now I’m rereading this amazing book.

Cleaned the apartment. It amazes me that I find new “not cleaned in a while” spots to clean every week. Or maybe dust just finds new places to accumulate on and in over time?

Meal-prepped. For once finishing really early on and at that lifting some stress off my shoulders. Postponing tasks until the very last minute is one of my worst habits.

Survived an appointment at the dentist’s. Nobody likes going there but for some reason this one was particularly anxiety inducing for me. The side effect of the anaesthetics lasting for five hours only added to the ‘fun’. I was one hangry beast at that point.

pb-and-chocolate-marbled-nice-cream_vegan

Had a wonderful laid back birthday with homemade chocolate peanut marbled icecream  [I’m not a cake person], a lovely girls + P. walk with my mum and sister and just a lot of quality time with the family. While my original plans where a little different I knew things wouldn’t work out this weekend  [it’s one of many birthdays in my parents’ circle of friends; my mum spent Saturday birthday-hopping and my sister, her husband and P. left early on Sunday]. Which is very okay with me because hiii, can you say belated birthday celebrations in warmer weather conditions? Definitely going to happen.   I’m aware what I’m about to say will make me look weird to some of you but I asked for no presents at this point [and still got one]. With Christmas just a bit over a month ago I didn’t need any already again. Gifts just for the sake of gifting? Not for me.

… and because this post is getting too long already again – will I ever better myself here? – I’m calling this a wrap and wishing you a …

Happy Monday!

Don’t forget to tell me your happenings and accomplishments from the past week!

Happiness-inducing today: Sunshine. Time with the family.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
What were some highlights from your past week?


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Trusting your future self.

Sometimes I’d really appreciate my mind giving me a little heads-up about the thoughts its goingto pour out once I start writing. Or talking. Has anybody else found that they weren’t aware of how deeply something was occupying their thoughts until they started talking to somebody or grabbed pen and paper? I’ve become aware of this very strongly during the past few months. My point here: I never plan on what I’m going to talk about in these Weeks in Review [and many other posts, either] aside from the obvious accomplishment part. Today, my mind couldn’t steer away from the thoughts that had come up reading a certain article the other day. With that mini-intro to my actual intro said/written …

Self-doubt. At least for me it’s a vicious cycle of not daring to do one thing leading to not even attempting the next. This interestingly coincides with the message of this article I read the other day. When we don’t trust ourselves to be able to – as an example from my own life – go to bed earlier we set ourselves up for eternal failure. Or – remembering the previous week’s post – an eternal struggle. But [sticking with the example here] when we manage to call it quits at night even just a few minutes earlier we learn that hey, we actually can change. Looking at it now I can see tiny little steps in several areas of life for me. Thanks for steering me in this direction of reviewing my life every week, Meg. I mean it. If it wasn’t for the Week in Review I would be much harder on myself and not value the significance of every single week. I wouldn’t recognize the – even if just subtle – improvements I’ve made.

Week in Review

In the past week I …

Worked the usual five days. Work went mostly well. Leaving me tired at the end of the day but feeling like I did my best, accepted criticism and made an effort to improve my work.

Posted just once. This is what happens when perfectionism sets in for me. I had intentions to post one more time but never finished my draft because it just didn’t seem right. I have hopes that things will be better this week. You will at least get one more post as it’s time for some good good links again on Sunday. It actually took holding myself back from already publishing them yesterday already. I make myself laugh sometimes.

Vacuumed and mopped my floors on Saturday rather than Sunday already. I’m getting better at not pushing everything out until the final day before getting back to work.

Finally recreated a blog recipe I’d been meaning to share for weeks but didn’t because I had no proper pictures [insert rant about lighting conditions in winter]. As of yet I haven’t looked through the pictures on my laptop yet so can’t say for a fact whether or not they turned out. Fingers crossed because I want to share the recipes – two in one but I think I’ll share them separately – with you. Below is one part of it [I picked one that’s definitely not going to be in the actual post, smudgy rim and all #reallife ;)].

weißes Mandelmus

Had a short but interesting conversation with a friend from school I hadn’t seen in seven (!) years.

Wrote a letter I’d been meaning to for a while already. This also served as a means of helping me relax while eating dinner. I’ve turned to checking my phone too often while eating at night and want to change that again. It’s not the whole time but I simply know a completely technology-free meal time is more calming and writing letters adds some creativity. Highly recommended.

Worked out most days but keeping it short on days when I felt too tired.

Night owl that I am productivity kicked in on Saturday night so I …

Meal-prepped a little and …

healthy maple buckwheat granola - gluten-free and vegan

Baked a batch of my healthy maple buckwheat granola [sorry. I had not intentions of bringing it up again and again ;)]. Not for any of my colleagues but – my dad. I randomly mentioned I was making some for colleagues and he showed an interest, snagged a bowl and requested a batch of his own. Truth: I’m hoping eating this will curb his appetite for sweets a bit because I know he likes those treats at the office a little too much when stressed  [= every day]. Wishful health nut thinking.

Started my Saturday and Sunday mornings by reading a full hour each before doing anything else. Weekend mornings are blissful. I had actually intended a trip to Hamburg on Saturday but that fell through thanks to the snow and potentially icy roads we’ve been seeing lately.

Ran errands for my parents after work on Wednesday.

Went on a walk through winter wonderland with my mum. We didn’t get to do this the previous Sunday so it was nice to catch up and get a chance to let go of some of my mind’s clutter. Fresh air to get my mind churning, too.

That’s it because the remainder were just the usual day-to-day happenings not worthy of mentioning in a post. I hope your past week went well  – tell me about it below?! – and:

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today: Today was an overall good day with the walk being my favourite part of it again. Thanks to my mum for convincing me it wasn’t too cold for it :).

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week!

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Scenes from a night owl’s life.

It’s just true: I’m a night owl through and through. Trust me I sometimes wish I wasn’t or even try to convince myself I’m not. Life proves time and time again I am. Just like that most of my accomplishments happen in the later hours of the day. Baking Christmas cookies at 10 PM? I’m that kind of girl. And apparently the exception in the blog world that seems inhabitated by early birds [jealous!].With the many differences between Germany and the US in mind I’m wondering if this is another one to add to the list. >Let me know what you think in the comments, I’m genuinely curious about this as one of my bosses just attended a workk conference in the US and told me the daily programs tended to start at 7 AM  – definitely not the norm over here.
The week felt full and passed by [too ] fast so here’s a recap through another Week in Review hosted by the fabulous Meg and sweet Ave.

Week in review

During the past week I …

Worked as usual.  Aside from Thursday that required pushing on despite a sudden spell of sick- and dizziness that led my colleagues to recommend going home. But despite not being overly fond of my job leaving the others hanging wouldn’t have felt right.

Posted twice: a Week in Review and those good good links.

Cleaned my apartment, including mopping the floors – on Thursday night already. That’s a first and made a huge difference in how my weekend went along. Having those annoying tasks crossed off already allowed for more time with the family – and baking.

Spent time with my favourite little human,  i.e. my sister and P. visited us for the weekend. Unfortunately, P. has been fighting a sticky cold on and off for weeks so he was very mum-focused but also enjoyed me carrying him around for longer than usual, too.

Baby nephew

[old picture because I didn’t take many this weekend]

Took another trip to town for my dad on Friday night even though I was just tired, hungry and not feeling it. But when your dad asks you to get him batteries for his headlights  [he’s been out late these days building a fancy new shed in my parents’ garden]. Granted, he didn’t ask but demand. Anyway, I took the chance to blast the music in the car and get my dance on. When life hands you lemons …

Baked! This deserves all the exclamation marks as I’ve been getting my Christmas baking game on late this year. Making up for time I chose two of the most involved recipes to bake this weekend. Each of them a classic from my maternal respectively paternal grandma’s repertoire.

omas-kekse_christmas-cookies

[Cocoa cookies sandwiched with coffee-spiked almond crème and topped with coffee-scented buttery frosting – a mouthful to say but pretty much gone after two days my parents’ house]

Fun fact: I dislike cut-out cookies – the process, not the results – yet both recipes required it. For the first one I shared duties with my mum – I prepared the dough, filled and frosted, she cut out and baked – but the second]? Done all by myself and I now have newfound appreciation for my grandma’s baking efforts. Zimtsterne [cinnamon stars], a gluten-free almond/nut-based shortbread base topped with crispy-crackly meringue frosting were the name of the game. Rather than use egg whites I ventured into Aquafaba territory and they turned out amazing. My family was so impressed  – and you might remember my mum’s not hiding her true opinion on my baked goods – that my mum a) said the person who discovered Aquafaba should be awared the Nobel price and b) told me she was going to prepare a chickpea dish this week so I could bake more Zimtsterne. If that doesn’t state how good these are I don’t know . They’re vegan and gluten-free but still pack a good amount of refined sugar so I’m not sure whether to share the recipe with you or not … Thoughts?

zimtsterne-vegan_aquafaba

[Not my best picture – trying to get one in the late afternoon on a rainy day isn’t the smartest move …]

Spent Saturday evening chatting with my mum and sister. While the seamatresses of the family went about their business I baked the abovementioned Zimtsterne. Words of encouragement were exchanged and pushed us through the finicky work. Win-win.

Went for a solo walk after my sister and P. had left on Sunday and I could feel a little Sunday blues arising. Being in nature and looking at cows helps. A little at least.

Meal-prepped as usual. Most of this happened while listening to Davida’s new podcast. Give it a listen if you’re into podcasts!

Ate intuitively on the weekend. More or less successfully but I tried. This meant swinging from non-stop appetite – hunger? – on Saturday to a lack thereof on Sunday. No pretences here: Intuitive eating -still- doesn’t come easily to me. The reason for which lies in my history of eating which I know I haven’t shared with you yet but I’ll leave it at this. Yet days like these show me that it works. Somehow. And we can all get there.

As I know this is already turning into half a novel in length again I’ll leave it at this and won’t add the other bits and bobs. I hope you had a great week and are starting well into the new one. Only so much longer until Christmas!

Happy Monday!

 

Happiness-inducing today: Family time.

 

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