Friday Favourites

Hi! Long time no talk – or at least it feels like that. What can I say? Life is life. Did I really just refer to that awful song?? Crazy things happen when you don’t watch your mouth fingers typing. Going on. For a little change I thought I’d share some of  the little things  that make my life better as of now.

1. Spring! Oh, you mean I mentioned that one before ? I’m afraid you can’t keep a country bumpkin from getting happy at the sight of the first flowers awakening. It’s obviously not quite the same in the city but a literal walk in the park works.

Walk_WHV

2. The sun and walks. Unfortunately, my hip has been in pain again so running is not in the picture for me right now. Instead, I’ve been indulging in walks as often as I could. Just me or does the sun never cease to bring a smile to your face, either? Granted, it might have to do with blinking because you forgot your sunglasses [not like I ever did …] but it usually turns into a real smile not to long afterwards. Endorphines.

Walk_sun

3. Something else that has certainly helped me boost the amount of those little endorphines lately? Kinder chocolate. It’s so weird and not me to reach for milk chocolate. In fact, I didn’t have any in my apartment so picked up a small box of the Easter edition at random. However, I’ve stepped up my game and ‘graduated’ 😉 to the larger box yesterday.

On a recovery-related note I will admit that I’ve felt guilty about buying, eating and enjoying a non-dark chocolate bar that is so far from vegan. I still like the darker bars more but I’m working on convincing myself that variety is the spice of life and eating Kinder bars is perfectly okay. I gave up eating fully vegan as a result of listening to my cravings so if I crave dairy milk chocolate: so be it. To end this unneccessarily long ramble: Satisfying our cravings is  part of intuitive eating and normal. Any guesses what I’m currently eating?

Kinder-Schokolade_chocolate_Easter

4. Scented candles. Yes, I’m aware it’s getting warmer but we’re still not talking about actual summery temperatures so I’ll keep lighting scented candles every now and then. The other day I walked into a bookstore – technically a book store but they sell all kind sof odds and ends, too – and found Yankee candles for the first times ever. I know they’r epopular in the US but not over here so you might be able to imagine my excitement.

I didn’t end up buying one because the pries left me in slight shock but it’s so tempting I might end up splurging on them after all one day …

And that’s all from me for now as I have yet to hear of any self-cleaning apartments. Too bad if you ask me seeing as mine could use a major spring clean-up. I’m linking up with Heather and Clare today and will talk to you again on Sunday for some good reads.

Happiness-inducing today: An unexpected postcard from a friend currently traveling the world.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

Your turn: what have been some of your favourites lately?

 Are you a fan of Yankee candles? If so: what are your favourite scents?

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Coffee chat and colour-coordinated cleaning

First things first: thank you to everybody who shared their opinion on my post last Thursday. It was very insightful to hear the different views and ways of handling the issue. Definitely some food for thought and I’d originally intended a follow-up post today but decided to spare you for now 😉 and go for some light-hearted randomness. There’s truly no better time for thinking out loud than Thursday – that one day separating us from weekend wondrousness.

Thinking-Out-Loud

1. Another note on the issue of that post, though: If it wasn’t for the ‘fear’ of colleagues finding my blog I’d share my real name and start posting pictures of myself in a heartbeat. Because Miss Polkadot was all cute and well in the beginning but just isn’t me. In a Gossip Girl kind of world I’d tell you to call me S – what is it about calling people by their first initial?? – but … not.

2. While in Hamburg – there’s no Starbucks in the city I live in – I spotted a sign announcing the wait is over for any coffee fiends once again: the Pumpkin Spice Latte is back. Now that I’m slowly developping a taste for coffee the big question would be if I should give it a go.

Only to remember right the next second that it’s not quite as alluring with the facts in mind. But there’s obviously still the option of a homemade cup of it – once I can overcome my laziness and make pumpkin puree from scratch … Oh, and pumpkin pie spice because we obviously don’t get it in stores over here.

3. Speaking of coffee: contrary to my expectation I find myself enjoying it more than I thought. It will never replace tea for me – especially not my favourite – but fixing myself a cup of it has become an after-work ritual for me. Still with a splash of milk, still sweetened. I ran into a little trouble for what to call it here. A cup of  joe? java? a hug in a mug? …? I’d like to assert that there’s no other beverage out there that has as many [loving] synonyms. Tell me yours!

4. On the weekend the topic of marriage kept coming up: one of my sister’s best friends just got married a few weeks ago, another will in a few months. My parents [jokingly] tried to evaluate the likeliness of my brother and his girlfriend tying the knot soon. They’re still touring the world and in the US right now so who knows if they won’t spontaneously take the trip to Las Vegas …?!

5. If you remember my sister’s wedding invitations I thought these by her best friend were really cute,  too. To explain: my sister’s friend and her now-husband enjoy playing both board games and Playstation. Does that bring back memories of playing Mario Party and always choosing the princess for anybody else, too?

Wedding invitation

6. Inspired by Amanda I finally picked up the Swiffer I bought, oh, two weeks ago? … ! What can I say? The vacuum cleaner has been my best friend but there’s a point where it doesn’t help much anymore. Also, is it just me or is mopping floors an extremely satisfactiory task?!

7. Speaking of satisfaction and said purchase: I swear I didn’t intentionally colour-coordinate while shopping. But my OCD was very pleased when I noticed the happy accident when unpacking:

Green

Anybody with OCD will understand the contentment I felt in that moment.

8. And on a last note the sky I talked about in yesterday’s happiness-inducer. Aside from the apparent lack of stars I had Coldplay playing in my mind. Don’t even ask about the scenario behind taking that picture. I make myself laugh sometimes …

Pink sky

Apparently the angels were baking as my dad used to tell me on such occasions when I was younger. Right in time if you’re asking me. Little more than two and a half months until Christmas so they’d better get baking if they want to keep Santa fuelled for his journey around the world. Why, yes, I’m five years old at heart. <- the result of being serious at work.

Happiness-inducing today: Seeing this picture. Yes, that gets me excited and yes, now you know what to you can do to make me – or another blogger, really – happy. (:

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

Polkadots & ponderings #4

Time for another post of random thoughts. Let’s talk confessions, coffee and cardio [a bit of a stretch but running but that wouldn’t have rhymed]!

1. Confession: I got a little snap-happy on our walk at the weekend and may or may not post a few more of those pictures on the blog. That being said I also have a lot more pictures of homemade chocolate but I won’t tease you any more.

Walk

2. In an effort to celebrate National Pancake Day I dared to step on the holy grail of blog cookery and create a recipe myself. Confession: It had been at least six months [read: actually more] since I last made pancakes. Today’s savoury Peanut Cauliflower Pancakes were … a fail [they didn’t hold together] and not [they were still tasty] . They might qualify as strange but good yet I’m not sure: to share or not to share the recipe? I’ll let you decide :).

Peanut pancakes

3. Making myself laugh #1: When I heard Starbucks was going to introduce the Pumpkin Spice Latte in Germany this year [no, we didn’t have it in past ones] I got all excited. The whole blog world has been raving about it for ages after all so it has to be awesome, right?! Yet even though they released the PSL on Monday already I haven’t hurried into a Starbucks yet. Because … I’m not a coffee drinker. Not at all. And finding out the price [about 5.50 $ for a tall one!] I’m not that sure I’ll give it a try any time soon.

4. Making myself laugh #2: Call me ridiculous after reading the above but while running some errands I was approached by a Starbucks employee giving away samples and this happened:

Have you tried it? Is it good?

Come on! Would you have refused a free beverage? It’s sitting in my fridge now …

5.  Remember me talking about changing my banana buying habits to get a free copy of Despicable Me? It arrived just this week. I have yet to watch it but it will happen soon!

6. This is so.freaking.cute. And makes me want to get a dog.

7. While at my parents I was shocked 😉 to find out my mum had yet to use the Essie polish she got when visiting me a month ago. Needless to say I had to let it get some play – totally selfless sympathy, obviously ;).

Russian roulette

8. Speaking of visiting my parents: I’ll be heading down to their house again this weekend. My mini goal for the weekend is to unplug at least one day because it’s about time. Hence why my laptop won’t be traveling with me – for the first time in a while. Technology addict?! Please tell me I’m not the only one!

9. Running talk: I’m apparently not ready for fall yet or at least daylight savings still confuse me. As I mentioned recently I’m an evening workout person. Too bad that means having to run earlier in the day now … which I have yet to manage. Running in the semi-darkness? Not cool.

10. Confession: My goal of writing letters is going well – and not. Wondering why? It’s going well because I really enjoy it and can think of so many people I want to send some snail mail. The ‘not so good part’: there are too many people I want to mail. I might just turn this into an ongoing project for the months to follow – and why not, really?

Happy Friday!

Happiness inducing today: A skype chat with my brother who’s currently in Australia.

In which situations do you make yourself laugh?

To post or not to post the pancake recipe :)?

Coffee fiends: Should I try the Pumpkin Spice Latte? And did you try the Vanilla Frappuccino? Did you like it?

Marvelous in my Monday: It’s the simple things

Happy Monday everyone! How was your weekend? I hope Spring has graced wherever you live with lots of sunshine and nature awakening from its [too long] winter slumber, too.

MiMM_new

After two weeks in the city there was nothing I longed for more than seeing my parents again. Despite no real plans on hand we never fail to share some good times whenever I visit. And who am I to deny it?  I’m a country bumpkin and proud of it so being in the countryside immediately brightens my mood, too.

Pretty in pink.

Pretty in pink.

Nothing beats waking up to birds chirping outside my window. Leisurely walking around the house marveling at the flowers my parents planted and tended to. Here’s to hoping their green thumb is going to rub off on me one day, too ;).

April showers bring ... April flowers?!

April showers bring … April flowers?!

My evening walks in the city? Sure, I do enjoy them. But when given the choice I’ll always pick strolls through the woods or fields. There’s something special about not only being outside in nature but nature in the countryside. Even on my run on Sunday I could tell the difference. Does anybody else get the best ideas ever while running outside? While it also happens for me on my city runs I noticed how much more creative my thoughts were while passing cows, horses and small villages. A more natural, spacious environment also allows my thoughts to flow much better. Now if only I had a thought recorder in my brain to keep all the ideas until after my run :D.

On a walk

Grammar nerd alert: I’ll trade a „k“ for a „g“ , please ;). Dashing to the supermarket to stock up on my fake Greek yogurt – the German “Quark” – I had to find they were sold out. Bummer. However, I happened upon these …

Can you say score?

Can you say score?

Fage on clearance? Only fellow foodie friends [alliterations make me happy] will understand my delight at the sight of these. Especially now that they were discontinued around where I live – after such a short time already, mind you! Naturally, I grabbed four of the six containers still available and walked away an even happier girl.

Even more smile- and happiness-inducing, however, honestly was the time spent lying in the sun, discussing politics and chatting with my parents. I love them more than any other people and feel blessed to have them in my life.

Adoring my mum's beautiful table decorations.

Adoring my mum’s beautiful table decorations.

One thing that made today marvelous already was our beautiful host Katie’s post about her amazing baby shower. I’m so happy for her!

Did you grow up in the countryside or the city? What’s one thing you especially liked about where you grew up?

When do you have your most creative phases? Running and generally moving around outside gives me such a lot of great ideas.

What was the last surprise you happened upon in the clearance section? I’m pretty sure the Fage cups had been waiting there just for me to pick them up ;).

Get to know me a little more [Liebster award]

Get yourself a snack and a nice cup of tea because today’s post is going to be a lengthy one. Thanks to the sweet Carli who nominated me for the Liebster award. I truly appreciate this award – and not only because the word “Liebster” is German but because it’s a great way of sharing some more information about me. I hope it will let you get to know me a little more.

 

liebsteraward1

Here are the award rules:

1. Write 11 random facts about yourself.

2. Answer the 11 questions posed by the person who nominated you.

3. Create 11 new questions.

4. Nominate 11 bloggers and mention them in the post.

5. Thank the blogger who nominated you and tell the bloggers you nominated

 

11     Random facts about me

1.I have two older siblings: one brother and one sister. Funnily, there always is a three-year age difference between us: my brother’s 27, my sister 24 and I’m 21.

2.When I was younger I couldn’t fall asleep in complete darkness. Thus, my room door had to be left semi-open and the light in the corridor needed to be turned on at night. My poor brother and sister who shared a room with me for several years :D.

Nowadays, though, it’s the completely different way round: I cannot fall asleep when there’s light turned on in my room, the corridor or a street latern’s light falling in through the windows.

3. Like most parents my mum has been having nicknames for me and my siblings which she used interchangeably. Nothing wrong with that at home. But one day when I was in 6th grade I forgot my Biology folder at home. Being the kind person she is my mum wanted to give it to me and knocked on the classroom door. When my teacher opened mum said “My little snail forgot her folder at home.” Eeeehm, yes … Let’s say the whole class couldn’t stop laughing and kept calling me “little snail” for the remainder of the day.

4. Tea is my favourite beverage ever and I’m very picky about it. No fruit-flavoured roibush for this girl – yuck!

Tea and cups

5. I’m afraid of spiders. One night I was getting up to go to the toilet and something told me there would be a spider sitting on top of light switch. Um, do I really need to tell you the end of the story? Aaaah!

6. I can’t name the colour of my hair. When I was younger people used to say it was dark blonde but my mum called it “street dog blonde” while I’d have never associated it with blonde in any way. Let’s just go with a light brown.

7.  I can’t go without chocolate for a single day. This one doesn’t need an explanation, right ;)?

8. Touching frosted glass gives me the heebie-jeebies.

9. I’ve never watched Titanic. Anybody else? Please tell me I’m not the only one!

10. My parents insisted all of their children learn at least one instrument. So I played the flute and then the alto recorder for several years while being jealous of my sister getting piano lessons. Practicing for my lessons sometimes happened just an hour before they started … woops.

11. Growing up my sister and I were huge Spice Girls fans listening to their CDs all of the time. Who’s with me?

 1.   What’s the best piece of advice someone has ever given you?

This one’s hard to answer. What I can say, though, is that my parents have given me lots of great advice for life.

2. What is your favorite dessert?

Hands down: Ice cream. I could eat it every day. Sorry, Froyo lovers.

Ice cream

3. In your opinion, what’s the best way to spend a Sunday afternoon?

Spending quality time with my family. Talking to my mum about everything on my mind on a long walk through nature. I used to laugh at the idea of Sunday being “family day” but nowadays it seems like a great one.

4. Name one quality you admire in other people.

Self-confidence. I admire people who probably don’t have the “perfect” lives either yet seem to be at peace with themselves and their environment.

5. What’s your biggest fear?

Losing somebody I love. I can’t imagine living without the people dearest to my heart and am afraid whenever they travel far away, have to go to the hospital or something like that.

My grandpa experienced serious health troubles several years ago that are still ever-present and since then I’ve been even more worried about him. It has shown me how fragile life is and reminded me to spend more time with the ones I love.

6. Do you have any hidden talents? I have a hard time seeing my own talents.Something other people tell me I’m good at – without even trying – are languages and grammar. I genuinely enjoy writing, checking other people’s papers/presentations/you name it for spelling or grammar mistakes. I can hardly read a text without spotting mistakes. As this can be a serious problem when writing own texts I try not to re-read them after publishing. So I’m sorry if there are any mistakes in my posts!

Letter

7. What is your favorite vacation spot?

I haven’t traveled a lot in my life yet. What I can say, though, is that I’m not a beach person. Not that I wouldn’t like lovely sunny places – I just don’t enjoy lying around in the heat doing nothing all day long. I’d rather go hiking, cycling or spend time in nature in another way.

8. Would you rather live in the calm countryside or a hustling bustling city?

Having grown up in the countryside and moved to the city after graduation from school I’ve experienced the benefits and disadvantages of both. While living in a city is offering a lot to do when you’re younger I’d love to move back to the countryside if founding my own family. Nature is my happy place.

At the lake

9. What is your favorite way to destress?

Calling my mum or a friend. Bake. Drink tea and eat chocolate.

10. What was your first job (if you’ve had one)?

Does raking the leaves or mowing the lawn count – even though those were unpaid my mum still called them my “jobs” ;).  But really, babysitting was my first ever paid job and I liked it a lot. Who doesn’t like to get paid for playing Barbie with cute little girls or beating 8-year-old  boys in board games? Being allowed to eat everything I please from the closets didn’t hurt, either.

11. What is one lesson you learned the hard way?

At the risk of sounding boring and dumb: That being thin doesn’t make life any easier. Slipping into my ED during my teenage years I hoped losing weight would be my ticket to the world of happiness, popularity and success. But the truth is that dropping pounds doesn’t change the person you really are underneath. And my true friends are those that liked me before I even started losing and went with me through everything.

My 11 questions

What did you want to become as a child?

Who’s your role model in life?

If you had/have a stuffed animal: What was/is its name?

What would you like to be remembered for by others?

Which foreign culture would you like to learn more about?

What’s your motto in life?

What are three of your favourite books of all time?

If you could switch places right now where would you go?

What is one of your quirky habits?

 Which nicknames do you have?

What is your favourite way to treat yourself?

 

Edited to add: Sorry my original list was that short. I should really stop writing posts at night when my brain is elsewhere :D. So here you go …

My nominees

Irina @ Chocolatea Time

Michelle @ Peachy Palate

Heather @ Kiss my Broccoli

Kat @ a dash of fairydust

Lauren @ The homeostatic Mindset

Aimée @ An Aussie in England

Shreya @ rush of endorphins

Antonia @ Health inspirations

Emma @ Sweettoothrunner

Laura @ Laura Virginia

… and how could I forgot about Jen @ Peas and Crayons?!

 

Even if I didn’t nominate you please feel free to answer some or all of the questions above. I’d really like to get to know more about YOU!

I hope you enjoyed reading these random facts about me. Have a great day!