Looking for autumn.

It seems that autumn is taking over extremely slowly this year. So many trees are still mostly green with only hints of yellow. It’s supposed to get colder next week so maybe it’ll finally get properly autumny. We’ve had some misty mornings, though, so that has been nice. I took a walk by the river and tried to look for autumn. Here’s what I found.

Rosehip berries and some hints of yellow.

Mist over the river.

Love the vivid blue!

There seem to be some hints of yellow on those trees at the back.

Well, that’s better!

Autumn’s in the air. It will begin properly any day now. It’s obvious that the trees are on the brink of the change. I just can’t wait to see the beautiful, vivid colours.

How’s autumn coming along in your neck of the woods? Also: do you have many trees that turn red? We have very few, unfortunately. We’ve got loads that turn yellow and some that turn orange but the red ones are very hard to find.

Cosy working space.

When I’m not teaching, I spend a lot of time sitting at my desk – lesson planning, picture editing, internetting… you know the drill. I’ve always been a very clean and organised person but these traits actually seem to multiply as we are headed into the darker seasons of the year. The number one thing I do on a gloomy day is that I make myself a cuppa. Right after that, I make sure that I’m spending my time in a cosy environment.

I cannot stand mess and a messy place is never cosy for me. A wiped-down desk and little clutter are the watchwords there. At Christmas, I tend to put up more decorations everywhere, including my desk, but generally speaking, I still like to keep it simple. Fewer things around mean fewer distractions. At the same time, however, I’d never go with just a plain, bare desk with nothing but a laptop on it. If we’re talking cosy, it has to be clean and organised but there needs to be something extra as well.

Right now, for example, I’ve got a jar with fairy lights and autumn tokens in it. (I posted pictures of it here.) I keep the fairy lights on whenever I’m around and it does great things for the cosiness factor.

I always keep this paperweight on my desk:

It belonged to my grandmother. It’s one of the most precious things I own.

It’s probably the most obvious thing ever but one candle goes a long way. I finally lit up the Vanilla Bourbon one from Yankee Candle and I love the smell. Also I cannot exist without lip balm and eye drops, so these two items are always within my reach, whenever I am.

I usually have my headphones there, too, for when I need to close myself in my own little bubble. I tend to listen to instrumental music a lot when I work.

Coffee, tea, hot chocolate… I love my hot drinks. :)

Slipper boots. Because I get very cranky when my feet are not warm. I never fail to buy a new pair each year because they last just about one season. These are from last year from Tchibo.

What’s your working space like? Do you need it to be all clean or are you the messy type? And what do you do when the days get darker and colder in order to make the hours you spend at your your desk more pleasant? And what are your favourite autumn candles?

Weekly gratitude post #4.

4 working days this week…. I could get used to that, no doubt. It made me feel like I had a head start for the entire week. Lately I have been trying hard to keep my Sundays free. I really need them to catch up on some minor cleaning, picture editing, blogging, cooking, napping and other things I don’t usually have time for during the week. Granted, it’s only been a couple of weeks since I put it in practice but it seems to be working out nicely. It feels like it’s the only day I am not under so much pressure and it’s incredibly relaxing to have this one day properly off.

The highlight of this week has probably been my hair. It was great to have it so light over the summer but come autumn I always long for darker, redder hues. And I got exactly what I wanted! Right now it’s still extremely vibrant because I still haven’t washed it and it’s leaning more towards red rather than ginger/orange but why not, change is good.

This was what I wore last night. One of my goals for this season is to buy new heels. I feel like it’s not supposed to be such a chore but it really is. What is mainly sold here are boring, uniform, rock hard shoes and they’re often too small/too big and there are hardly ever any half-sizes. We’ll see, maybe I’ll be lucky this season. :)

This week I’m grateful for:

1. The ability to find joy in all the little things. They make life much more magical and jolly.

2. My tight hips and back. Because I like the challenge and I love seeing the progress.

3. Pumpkins. Because I still remember them being so very rare around here when I was a child. Now they’re available everywhere and I love to cook and decorate with them. And sometimes, when I look at them, they remind me how much there’s still to discover and taste — and that makes me very happy.

How has your week been? What have you been grateful for?

Home: autumn decorations.

Happy October, everyone! Hope you’re as stoked for this month as I am. :) This morning was actually the perfect autumn morning. The weather was crisp and sunny and when I nipped out to the shop to buy some bread, I could smell autumn in the air.
You know how sometimes, no matter how much you love that particular season or holiday, you just cannot get into the spirit at all? Well that doesn’t seem to be the case this year. I’m so very excited about the upcoming weeks and months and I really want to enjoy every single moment leading up to my favourite time of the year.

Last weekend I finally had time to put up some autumn decorations. I usually don’t go overboard with them; I think that a couple of touches here and there are quite enough and I also like to leave some space for Hallowe’en decorations that will be coming up soon.

I recently ordered this jar from H&M home and I love it. I’ve put all kinds of autumn-related stuff into it (pebbles, chestnuts, leaves and tiny little pumpkins), plus some fairy lights. I rather like how it turned out!

New Yankee Candle, Vanilla Bourbon. It smells delicious.

The lamp is an old piece from Ikea. I autumnised it by wrapping a leafy garland around it. I like it a lot!

Now the board is all ready for Halloween now. I snagged the free printables here.

I love this headband; I got it for Christmas last year and it was just too autumny to wear it in January. Now I wear it all the time.

The kitchen got its usual makeover, too. Only now there are more leaves and berries.

It looks very pretty when it’s all lit up.

I’ve added some autumnal touches to my classroom as well.

I keep it quite sober but I like it when the environment I spend so much time in changes a little with every passing season.

I’ve got this nice little shelf (also H&M Home) now, too, which helps to make the desk look much more organised. I’ll be adding some Hallowe’en decorations soon because I want to enjoy them properly. :)

Do you decorate for autumn and/or Halloween? And if so, when do your Halloween decorations go up?

Weekly gratitude post #3.

Yesterday I took Eda back to my sister as she’s now back from her travels. It hasn’t been easy at all. I’ve grown so used to having her around and I miss her terribly. I had to adjust some of my activities so I’d have enough time for her but it was so worth it. We have bonded like never before and she’s made me realise just how much I need to concentrate on being more patient and on having more balance in my life.
Eda is, by nature, a shy and fearful dog. But she is also incredibly clever and curious; she always needs to be around when there’s something going on. And it’s so much fun because she really is an active part of our everyday lives. She’s always around.
Apart from being shy, she’s also extremely affectionate with the people she trusts. It feels so nice to be trusted and loved by her, because she does so without any reservation or condition. And I love her in the same way.
This week I’m grateful for:

1. Eda. Because she’s the best dog in the whole world.

2. Running water. There’d been some emergency and they turned our water off unexpectedly on Wednesday afternoon. They turned it back on on Thursday morning and in the end we were without it for maybe 12 hours. Still, everything was so much more difficult and uncomfortable. Just how lucky and privileged are we?

3. This bank holiday weekend. I really need that extra day to do my autumn decorating, go skating and rest.

How has your week been? What have you been grateful for?

September food post.

I see so many photos of delicious food on the Internet every day and while I’ve noticed that some people tend to sneer at those who take photos of their food, I have to say I feel very differently. I consider it an invaluable source of inspiration as well as a sign that people do indeed take their time to make their food not only taste but also look good. To me, it’s such a healthy habit that often leads to actually enjoying your food and that can only be a good thing. However, I find food photography to be rather tricky — which of course is yet another reason to keep taking pictures in order to improve.

Now, on to the food photos!

Earl Grey tea loaf with cranberries.

Plum and cinnamon jam. We used the recipe from the latest BBC Good Food magazine except we used much less sugar. The recipe said 1 kg plums and 1 kg sugar, we did 1 kg plums and 20 dkg sugar and it’s definitely enough!

Chicken tikka masala, rice with roasted sunflower seeds. I adore tikka masala everything and the rice with the sunflower seeds somehow made it even better.

Plum crumble.

Figs with cheese and arugula, Bavarian pretzel and tea.


I love figs, they’re both gorgeous and tasty!

Next up: everthing pumpkin. :) Can’t wait!

It’s officially autumn.

Happy autumn, everyone!
The pumpkin season is upon us. Are you excited? Because I am! I took my camera with me when I took Eda for a walk yesterday to document the be beginning of the seasons. The leaves have barely started changing but are on the brink of autumn. The nights and mornings and significantly colder and you can almost smell it in the air. It will start happening soon — and I can’t wait. For now, here are some photos of very early autumn of 2015. It’s been a very sunny and rather war one so far, for a change.

Morning dew.

Rose hip.

Eda knows how to strike a pose!

Are you excited for autumn this year?

Weekly gratitude post #2.

I’m currently sitting in my living room, wrapped in my blanket and nursing a really awful cold. For the past few years my colds have lasted maybe 3 days but this one’s different, I just can’t shake it off. I had to skip the gym and skating, which I didn’t feel good about, but the truth is, if I want to be able to say that I’m doing my best to live a healthy life (which I do), my health needs to be my #1 priority. And that includes taking a couple of days off when I’m feeling poorly. So I spent the weekend taking naps and drinking lots of tea. I’m feeling a little bit more human today so hopefully I’ll continue to improve. :)

This week I’m grateful for:

1. My immune system and the fact that this bloody cold is just about the worst thing it has to deal with these days.

2. My early morning walks with Eda. I have to get up at 4.50 am so I usually walk her at about that time in the morning. It’s dark outside now and it’s often foggy and it’s really beautiful. Slightly creepy but beautiful. At the weekends, she usually wakes up between 6 – 7 am now, so I often see the sunrise when walking her. There’s usually no one else out there, it’s just us and the world that’s waking up. And it’s beautiful.

3. Ginger tea with honey.

4. Doctor Who. I may not have been very happy with it lately but I’m still very glad it’s back. And I really enjoyed the series premiere on Saturday!

How has your week been? What have you been grateful for?

Turkey 2015.

It’s surprisingly warm today (hello, Indian summer!) so I’ve decided to share with you a couple of snaps from my August holiday. It was a super relaxing holiday with a plenty of sunshine, swimming, relaxing, eating good food, exercising, napping, reading and quality family time. I honestly can’t think of ONE thing that I didn’t like. I mean, when the worst thing that happens to you on your holiday is that your bikini top clasp breaks on day two of the holidays, I think that’s pretty good going. :D

Sunrise as seen from the plane.

We had breakfast and some drinks by the pool and then our room was ready…. about 2 hours before it was supposed to be, which was fantastic.

Our room was amazing.

I love the floor tiles.

I’m so happy they have a gym! I went every day, just for an hour, and it was rather fantastic.

One of the many hotel pools.

The main pool.

To the sea! To the sea!

The food there was probably even better than last year.

Case in point.


This was lamb pilaf with berries and nuts. It was fantastic!

Also they make a really wonderful apple strudel.

Morning fun in the pool.

As I went to the gym in the morning, I often managed to sit on the beach all by myself and watch the sunrise.

Kiss kiss.

Attempting lifts in the water. :P

There was an inside pool as well which I got to explore when I went for a back massage.

The sunset there were pretty amazing as well.

It was her idea to do this but, to be fair, I told her she could. :D

The colours were unreal.