Sunday, January 29, 2012

Happiness comes in a box: Bag hooks

 We all know them: the little trinkets that cost next to nothing but they make us incredibly happy. Whether it's because they fulfill a certain purpose in our household or are there simply for their intrinsic beauty.

Bag hooks. Plural.
bag hooks

I bought these several months ago at my favourite store after my original bag hook broke. The plan was to get one but at less than 4 € a piece it made sense to get at least three, one for each of the bags I use on a regular basis.

magenta bag hook

bronze bag hook

Do you use bag hooks?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

What a difference a year makes

Szeged, Hungary
Szeged, Hungary

1 year / 365 days / 8760 hours / 525600 minutes and 204 posts.
I've often wondered what it is that drives bloggers to keep writing and ultimately what compels me to keep blogging. Many have said blogging is therapeutic and I certainly can't object to that. But there is more. There is definitely more. Past the followers and the stats and the popularity.
At the bottom of it all, I very much suspect is our innermost desire to connect and socialize. To share and be accepted. I have often wrote on my blog how isolated I felt and unable to find like minded people within my community. I started writing this blog in English with the intent of reaching a larger audience. With the hope of finding someone somewhere who will appreciate my quirky sense of humor, my love for pink and turquoise.

winter sunset somewhere between Romania and Hungary
winter sunset somewhere between Romania and Hungary

I knew that somewhere out there there are people who share my aversion to curtains and reality TV and who think Hercule Poirot really is the cat's pajamas.
What I have found is all that and more. In as little as a year I've made some real friends, I've honed my ability to write and express myself, made a lot of interesting discoveries, gained so much knowledge and experience I'd need to write at least three more blogs to convey it all.
There are no words to express my happiness and gratitude and a sense of awe. I never imagined so much kindness and appreciation exists.
Thank you all for this amazing experience :-)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

I might as well...

show you some more pictures of Ljubljana.

Ingenious fountain cover
Ingenious fountain cover

I know people usually suffer from January blues: The post festive December, after the rush and expectations and decorations, a lot of people feel like: "Okay, now what?"

Pigeons on the rooftop of the Conservatory 1
Pigeons on the rooftop of The Conservatory

I <3 January! In terms of weather it's the coldest month of the year, with the temperatures way below zero. But the good thing about it? No fog or cloudy weather. Bright winter sun all the way!

a chandelier suspended above the street 1
Chandelier suspended over the street

old grid with Ljubljana's emblem
A very old grid with Ljubljana's emblem: the dragon sitting on top of Ljubljana Castle

Old part of town 2
The old part of town with beautiful architecture

Thursday, January 12, 2012

8 months...half way there

October 2006
This post has been in the making for many many months. When I decided to go on a diet back in May 2011 it was after a careful and painful assessment of my lifestyle and the fact that I had gone from a size 38 to a size 44 in the span of 4 years and kept gaining weight!

November 2009
Nobody, absolutely nobody gains weigh overnight, but it is usually the case that the realization that one's gained too much comes in an instant. When is too much too much?
For me it was when I started hiding from cameras, unwilling to have my picture taken as well as look at myself in the mirror.

July 2010
 I wasn't going to spend the rest of my life hiding from myself so I decided to change that.

March 2011
 In eight months I managed to loose just over half of the weight I'd gained since 2006.

New Year's Eve 2011
My plan isn't to like I looked back in 2006, it never was. My plan is to never look and feel the way I did in 2010.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Are you a "we person"?

I'll be the first to admit freely that I often use the word we. We think, we feel, we want... As if my partner and I were a unified entity. And I also confess it irks me when Mr. C uses I instead of we when he talks about certain decisions or plans that most certainly concern us both.

Despite all of this we business I retain a firm grasp on my individual expression of self. Despite planning as a couple we both remain two different people. We have different hobbies, listen to different music, sometimes (though not often) have completely different points of view.
And this being my blog, there will always be only my picture in the profile. I may or may not feature Mr. C on my blog, on my Facebook profile and anywhere else on the Internet.
How do you feel about people who post profile photos that feature the blogger and their partner? Some might even think it's appropriate to use a photo where they are either hugging or kissing their boyfriends/girlfriends or being otherwise affectionate.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Making earrings for a change

Remember the Virtual Craft Show post? The bracelet I made specially for that event has since been shipped to India. What's more I was also one of the lucky winners. I received a special bead kit mix.
Last week the highly anticipated package from Michelle Mach arrived.

Lots of cool blues, clear glass and crystal and silver metal beads... basically my favourite beads to work with.

I've been playing with the beads over this weekend and as it turns out made more earrings in a row than ever before. I find it hardest to work on earrings. Very difficult to come up with interesting and wearable designs.

The ones made with recycled glass rondelles are by far my favourites.

This necklace is made from components from all over the world. I used frosted glass beads, blue focal and metal spacers from Michelle's kit and added hematites I bought in Montenegro three years ago and a clasp I ordered from the UK.

And finally, since I was doing so well with the earrings, another ancient components from my stash: a pair of spiral shells combined with emerald green glass beads.

The shells were never meant to be used as jewellery components because they had no holes for stringing. Since that has never stopped me before I bought them anyway and drilled the holes myself. Anything can be used as a jewellery component :-)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Friday night film selection: Hearts in Atlantis

I've been having an Antony Hopkins movie marathon for the past week or so. I've also been feeling very uninspired to scout out new films instead I prefer to rewatch old favourites. My brain has been on sensory overload and watching a familiar plot, listen to the same dialogue while casually working on some jewellery is my version of R&R.
Hearts in Atlantis is a beautifully fluid, nostalgia evoking narrative based on a novella by Stephen King. Therefore the presence of paranormal elements are no surprise. As is often the case with King's work, the story is centred around a young boy Bobby living in a quiet, sleepy neighbourhood where nothing ever happens.
Between his strenuous relationship with his self-involved mother and his two best friends life seems almost idyllic. The routine is interrupted by the arrival of an elderly, enigmatic new tenant Mr. Brautigan. Mr. Brautigan shows a great interest in Bobby and the two quickly develop a meaningful and trustworthy relationship.
Amid all this Bobby is dealing with his mother's lack of affection, the town bullies and the mysterious dark strangers who threaten his new friend.
Ultimately this is just another coming of age film. What makes it worth watching is the flow of the narrative, the super photography with rich warm colours of the background. And since I'm a fan of the genre I love the occult elements in a seemingly innocent environment, the whole evil lurking in the shadows concept.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Age appropriate behaviour and what it means to be a grownup

I pay my bills on time. I make sure my cat has the best vet in town.
I recycle. I buy organic and fair trade whenever possible. I'm almost fanatic about having biodegradable cleaning & laundry products. Cruelty free cosmetics too.
I never throw away leftover food. In fact I try to cook appropriate amounts thus minimizing leftovers.

I do all these things and more because I am rational, responsible and economical. I don't necessarily associate this behaviour as being a grownup.

I also like to:
  • wear pink
  • receive helium balloons for gifts
  • play games and watch cartoons

I get ridiculously excited over super girly stuff like pom pom adorned beanies, cute T-shirts and Hello Kitty.

It doesn't make me immature.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The perils of blogging and an award

Without fail my morning routine for the past year has involved sipping a large cup of coffee in my pajamas and going through my Google reader checking the latest post from my favourite bloggers.
This morning was no exception. Here I was sitting with my first morning coffee and racking my brain what to write about when I inadvertently, as I always do, stumbled upon something wonderful.

Blackthorn tweed jacket

One of my favourite bloggers Mette wrote about shoes today and one of "the regulars" My Spotty Pony mentioned a brand of boots she prefers. Dubarry of Ireland.

Arrowgrass tweed skirt

Oh so elegant, oh so classic and oh so expensive. What's more they not only have footwear but clothing too. I can just picture Mr. C shaking his head. Another fabulously extravagant obsession in the making.
Big sigh...

Footwear care sample pack

I also received a blog award from Mette yesterday. My first blog award. Yay! Thank you Mette :-D

The rules:
  1. The award is given to bloggers with fewer than 200 followers.
  2. You are to thank the giver, who gave it to you.
  3. Reveal your 5 blogger picks, and let them know, by leaving a comment on their blog.
  4. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
  5. Hope, that the people, you have sent the award to, will forward it to their 5 favorite bloggers.

I'm passing on this award to the following bloggers:
  1. Bead addict from the need to bead
  2. Heidi from Ex Post Facto Jewelry
  3. Ms. M from Department of colour
  4. Paula from Paula's Diary
  5. Susan from Style Made by Hand

Monday, January 2, 2012

A quiet start of the year

Vrhnika: Football field with a track on the left, kindergarden on the right

January 1st is always a most welcome day of the year. After all the noise, the fireworks and loud music from the New Year's Eve celebrations the quiet that follows is almost deafening yet refreshing.
Most people are staying in and nursing their hangover so taking a midday walk almost always feel like a walk through ghost town.

 River Ljubljanica

jewellery pliers

Mr Santa brought me some jewellery pliers. In terms of gender roles and the dividing line between male and female it's still very funny to have more pliers than a guy despite the obvious fact that I do really really need and use all of these when making jewellery.

Latest jewellery project