December 14, 2014

Update

Hi everyone!
I obviously haven't been blogging much at all these days.
Basically, life has become super busy and continues to be busy. I am going home for the holidays and am returning to England with my mother.
When I started this blog I had loads of free time, but unfortunately (for the blog), that is rare these days for me. This is the first time I have turned on my laptop in a week!
So I am going to be taking a bit of a blogging break. I just didn't want to leave you all wondering where I was! Don't worry, I will return to blogging in the near future, or probably just very randomly within the next months, like if I have a new recipe that I am just dying to share with you.
I wish you all happy holidays and a fantastic new year! I will be back soon :)
xoxo Nicole

December 6, 2014

Easy DIY's that would make great gifts

[Has nothing to do with this post, but I just needed to share this pic of Lola sitting like a human, trying to figure out why I'm laughing at her]
Woo hoo! Saturday!
I woke up this morning to it being 21 degrees out side. I debated weather or not I should live in my bed for the rest of winter; it was such a cozy hot pocket. But then I realized that would never do and was eager to see if there was snow out my window. Yet there was no snow, just ice. Everything was frozen. Although it did look like a dust of snow.
Going out to walk Lola was a real treat (said with sarcasm).
They say dogs keep you active. That must be true, because there is no way I would ever go out walking in the dark morning in below freezing temps for my own pleasure.
My car was completely frozen over, too. It looked like being in a giant ice cube from the inside.
So what a perfect morning for hot yoga! Nothing sounds better on a freezing day than doing relaxing yoga inside a giant toaster oven.
I was very glad I went, and felt so warm and peaceful after.
And since it's definitely feeling like winter (here at least), let us turn to the topic of holiday gifts!
Most DIYs are cheap, easy, and of course, totally personal because they are made by you! So if you are tight on funds for holiday shopping, or want to impress with an awesome homemade gift, DIYs can be a great idea!
Now, I am no artist, nor do I sew, nor do I have a ton of patience when it comes to crafts. The following projects are things would love to try out or I would be happy getting them as a gift myself! (Or, you know, make them for yourself!)  They are also things that I could manage to do; easy :)

Animal Bookend
Cute idea, and can be made with really whatever you wanted to glue on top! Maybe an owl? How cute would that look on a shelf!
Also saw this done with a slab of stone

Lip Balm
I've actually already ordered beeswax and it should be arriving soon! I wear lip balm all the time, and would love to make my own.

Tea Towel
Love the idea of paining my own tea towels for the kitchen. What a lovely gift that would be! I think it would be cute to make themed towels for holidays and seasons.

Vintage Book Print
Now, you can pay to have one of these made for you via Etsy, or you can just do it yourself! Print anything you would like and put in a shabby chic frame.

Hand Drawn Mugs
You can draw anything you would like and it can be done on any mug (while white is obviously the easiest to draw on). Def going to try this soon!
Same idea for plates. Or anything else ceramic!


Modge Podge Coasters
Again, these can be made with any print you would like, and you just modge podge it on there! So easy and cute! These ones shown here are made with Instagram prints. Love!

Teacup Candles
I've made candles before, other than getting the materials together (order off Amazaon.com), they are super easy to make. And how adorable are they in teacups!
Do you have a favorite DIY?

December 2, 2014

Southwest Quinoa Bites

I can't believe it's already December!
I wasn't planning on putting up any holiday decorations, since I'm going to be heading back to California, but as a lover of anything sparkly and shiny, I just couldn't resist setting a few things around the house.
A belated birthday present came in the mail for me :) I am in LOVE with my new yoga mat. Isn't it beautiful?! If you are wondering, it's by Yoga Design Lab, and is a microfiber, antislip mat, which feels amazing.
I am really into these quinoa bites right now. I made a batch (this recipe makes 12), and have been keeping them in the fridge as leftovers. They make a great quick meal, and are appropriate for breakfast, lunch, or dinner! Nice thing about them is you can totally customize them to whatever seems tasty to you. I made these "southwest" flavored ones, but you can add in whatever other veggies would you like.
Ingredients
1 cup quinoa (cook with 2 cups water)
3 eggs
3 tomatoes, diced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup cheddar cheese
2 tbs salt

Cook quinoa, and let cool for about 5-10 minutes. Then in a large bowl, mix together all ingredients.
Grease a muffin pan, and fill each tin all the way to the top (about two heaping spoonfuls), gently pressing down.
Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Let cool for at least 5 minutes before removing.

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