Monday, September 22, 2014

Mrs Egeland’s Latest Read Vol.II

It’s been a while since I last posted anything of this series, mostly because I haven’t read any book that I felt would be of interest to you all.

However, my mother was kind enough to send me a book that I think you will all be interested in. This might get deep and insightful, be warned.

HUNGRY by Crystal Renn

A Young Model’s Story of Appetite, Ambition and the Ultimate Embrace of Curves.

What the Blurb Says: Hungry charts the rise, fall and rise of Crystal Renn, offering a behind the scenes peek into the modelling industry, as well as a trenchant look at our weight obsessed culture. In this testament to the power of authenticity, Renn illustrates the ways in which the fashion industry is slowly changing and exposes the cold truths about size and sizeism. An inspiring and cautionary tale, Hungry will resonate with anyone who has battled society’s small-minded definitions of beauty.

I live in a country where I feel overweight, judged by others for not conforming to their national identity and surrounded by obsessive exercisers. That is my personal feelings on the matter! Part of that is my own feelings of insecurity, and nothing to do with the place I live.

This book is also about a woman’s insecurity, that rightly or wrongly, intentionally or not was exploited so that she became an anorexic, exercise bulimic. She was told that she was beautiful but too fat, she had to lose weight and that coupled with her own obsessive personality sent her down a road of starvation and unhappiness. Thankfully she found the strength to eat, to learn to love her natural shape and to stop caring about thigh gap or no thigh gap. 

Its a tale of success, of the perils of the fashion industry and Crystal Renn’s journey from emaciated anorexic to a healthy and successful plus-sized model.

Lessons I Took From It

I think it teaches what we’ve really always known that natural is beautiful and if you are naturally thin then good for you and if you are naturally curvy then good for you too. No one should be forced to being something they’re not even if its themselves doing the forcing. Sometimes we forget that.

It also shows that the beauty industry can be ruthless and extremist.

I can identify with her story because although I have never been anorexic, I am not naturally thin and I have been pressured into thinking that that was wrong, that I should look like everyone else, that I should strive to have tiny thighs with a gap between them. That somehow, because I wasn’t skinny, because I enjoy eating and I don’t go on punishing workouts five days a week I was bad, unhealthy, unattractive. This world is full of judgements and that can get inside your head, even when you have been raised to love yourself and your body, and without diligent hard work to get those extreme ideals out of your head its hard to feel good about who you are, and what you look like.

Everyone should love who they are and what they look like! Its not a privilege of the beautiful, its a right of all mankind!

Well that’s my two pence worth.

Until next time,

Don’t forget to follow and subscribe.

Davita

Friday, September 19, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: Lazy Lentil Soup

It’s not often I make soup, in fact I can’t actually remember the last time I made soup before today.

I don’t often make soup because my darling hubby once said that soup wasn’t food, it was drink. So its relegated to starters or lunch on my own, that means that if I’m in a hurry I want to make something simple I don’t make soup, because that usually means making another dish besides.

But this week, I decided to do a cleanse and the best thing about lentil soup is, its great if your on a fast or detoxing or anything like that. Why? Because its liquid, so you can have it on a liquid fast, its totally vegetarian so its allowed on a green fast, its nourishing, full of vitamins and quite filling.

Also lentils are super easy to cook.

This is a even easier way to make lentil soup.

Lentil Soup, the Cheat’s way!

You will need:

  • 1 onion
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 1 can of green lentils
  • 1 can of red lentils
  • 500ml of vegetable stock

Mrs Egeland’s Note: Lentils are so easy to cook that even if you can’t get canned lentils then dried will work just as well.

In a frying pan, warm a little olive oil and a teaspoon of butter. Dice the onion and fry it until clear. Add the chickpeas, and lentils and stir.

If you’ve got dried lentils, switch to a saucepan and add the vegetable stock, simmer until the lentils are tender which won’t be long. Then blend and reheat.

Otherwise, put your onion lentil mix in a blender. They should be well seasoned from the vegetable stock, but taste and season if you think it needs it. Once they’ve been blended and are smooth, turn the mixture into a saucepan and add the stock.

Stir, mixing the stock well into the mixture and heat.

Your done, serve, eat as much as you like without having to worry too much about the calories. Unfortunately I liked this soup so much that we finished before I remembered to photograph the results.

Pretty short post, huh?

Well I will do better next time. Enjoy the soup.

Don’t forget to subscribe and follow. Comment below, show me your skills with photos.

Until Next Time

Davita

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Inspiring Crafts From History: The Art of Letter-Writing

Today I was looking at StumbleUpon and I came across a blogger who had a recipe for Cocoa Smoothie, and she was lamenting the lack of letters we write these days.

She longed for the days when we communicated in a much simpler way. Before the advent of Facebook, mobile phones and emails. When you got more than bills, packages from eBay and junk mail in the post. When young lovers awaited love-letters, when mothers awaited letters from sons fighting in wars far away and letters didn’t have to mean dread or final demands.

It got me to thinking about that myself, and it inspired me to write to my mum. We both enjoy writing and receiving letters, we don’t always have the time and with Skype, sometimes there seems little point.

The Art Of The Letter

The art of the letter should be celebrated, it needs to be taught to the newer generations. We still have uses for the humble letter, quite often a good letter to a prospective employer can help you along, or a letter of query or complaint to a service provider may help you get information or even a rebate on a bill.

Letter writing skills can help write a professional looking email, so even though you may not need a “hard copy” for snail mail, you can still cultivate the art of letter writing for the 21st Century.

The beauty of a letter or even a card is that its easily available to be re-read as many times as the receiver wishes without having to search in your Inbox. I think letters can be comforting and encouraging things, and if I know of a friend that feels down I will send a card or letter to let them know they are not alone. To send some words of encouragement that will be there when I can’t be, say at 2:30 am.

Some Pointers For The Would-Be Letter Writer

Letters don’t need fancy stationary, and in fact the planer the better when it comes to a professional letter to a prospective employer, a letter requiring information or a letter of complaint.

IMG_2008[1]However, with a pencil or pen you can decorate a plan piece of paper, and make a letter more of an occasion when you write to a friend or loved one.

This is my humble example of decorating a sheet of paper, ready for a hand written letter.

There are many blogs and websites where you can find tips for writing in a professional context. When I did a search I even found a website that has free cover letters. I would recommend anyone wanting to write a letter to Google “How to write a letter” and going from there.

When writing to friends or family, I’d suggest putting the place of writing and the date in the right hand corner. A letter will begin differently for different purposes, so if your writing to a family member or close friend: Dear Jenny/Dear Mum. Ending “with love”, “best wishes” or something else equally affectionate.

If your writing to someone you don’t know well about a personal matter, like an invite or something like that: Dear Mr John Doe/Dear Mrs Joanna Bloggs. Ending with “Yours Sincerely”.

Address the envelope so that the address sits in the centre, sometimes its appropriate to put a senders address on the back of the envelope. I often do, that way the reader will know who sent it before they even open the letter.

Consider Writing A Letter

Whether its to a loved one or some other kind of letter, I hope that I have inspired you to write a letter. To acquire the skill of bygone days.

I’m sure the receiver will appreciate your effort. I know a love letter is always appreciated by the receiver. So listen you lads, if you want to charm a girl, a well written letter would be a good place to start.

Until Next Time

Don’t forget to subscribe, follow and comment.

Davita

Monday, September 15, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: Party Food

Its not often that I attend or even arrange a party, this time I am only one of some friends organising a baby shower for a dear friend of ours. Thank goodness! I have organised a baby shower single handed, I have to say it was quite stressful, and I have no wish to do it alone again.

Our dear friend is having a little girl quite soon, no doubt she will be a marvellous mother. We decided we wanted to give her a baby shower, and of course there had to be a lot of pink! We invited her friends and asked everyone to bring food as well as presents.

My Contributions

I thought I’d better make both a savoury dish and a sweet, because in my experience everyone tends to bring sweet and then there’s nothing else.

So I decided to make chicken vol-au-vant, an 80’s classic, although I have tweaked the recipe a little because I didn’t want to add white wine.

I cheated and bought pastry cases, I was planning on making them but time escaped me. So this is really just a recipe for the chicken filling.

Chicken Vol-Au-Vant Filling

  • 1 medium sized leek IMG_2003[1]
  • A handful of button mushrooms.
  • 1 tsp dried thyme.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • Butter.
  • 400-600 grs chicken fillet, diced
  • 4 tbsp cream cheese
  • Chicken stock
  • 1 tsp cornflour

Slice the leek and the mushrooms, and fry in a pan with some butter. When the mushrooms are cooked and the leek has separated add the diced chicken. Continue to fry, and cook the chicken. Add the cream cheese and add enough chicken stock to make a sauce with the cream cheese. Simmer for about 5 mins, or until the sauce thickens, add the thyme and cornflour at the end simmering for another 2 mins.

Fill your pastry cases and serve.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Taken from Muffins og Kaker, published by Spektrum.IMG_2002[1]

  • 6 tbsp butter or margarine
  • 100g sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 55g chocolate chips
  • 225g flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 25g good quality cocoa
For Frosting
  • 225g bar of white chocolate
  • 150g cream cheese

Preheat the oven to 200C. On a baking tray arrange 18 paper cupcake cases. In a bowl, mix butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, making sure to beat each egg in well to combine. Add the milk, and fold in the chocolate chips. Sift in the flour, baking powder and cocoa, folding them carefully into the mixture so as not to beat out the air. Fill the paper cases, and try to flatten out the tops of the cakes.

Bake in the oven for 20 mins, or until firm and well risen. Allow them to cool.

Mrs Egeland’s Note: I actually used a packet frosting this time around, it happened to be white chocolate flavour. The frosting here would have made a delicious alternative.

For the frosting, break the white chocolate into a heatproof bowl, and put the bowl over a saucepan of rolling boiling water, making sure that the water doesn’t actually touch the bowl or splash water into the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate has melted, white chocolate is always a bit delicate, so don’t hurry it. Allow to cool a little. In another bowl have the cream cheese, and whisk it until its softened. Add the melted chocolate. Decorate your cupcakes. Chill them in the fridge for an hour before serving, to firm up your frosting.

Delicious Food, Good Company

The party was a success. Everyone had made delicious food, and my small offerings was well received. There were gifts and I’m sure the little baby girl will be beautifully dressed for a long time to come.

Until Next Time

Davita

Friday, September 12, 2014

Daubling In Art: Mrs Egeland’s Artistic Rendering of Gagoy Beach

Now that’s a pretty mouthful of a title.

Darling readers,

I must apologise for my absence, working a 40 hour week tends to leave you creatively moribund. Its only now that I see the end of my month of full time work coming to its close that I have the creative juices to push through and bring you this post, which I will admit has been waiting in my mind for five weeks.

Pluggin’ A Fellow Blogger

Just a quick note, a dear friend of mine from about 8 years ago, not long after I’d started this blog I met Ms Sarah Brown whilst in Sweden and just recently we reconnected via social network Facebook. She has just recently taken the plunge and started her own blog, its deeper and more insightful than I would dare to write here. She talks of her own experiences and enlightens her readers with meaningful monologues. I hope you will go and check her out.

Back To Our Topic

As you all know, or would know if you’ve been keeping up with my blogs of late, I was away for a brief spell in Grecian island of Samos where I fell in love with the place. I looked high and low for a painting to bring home whilst I was there, but (and excuse the clichè) nothing spoke to me. So when we’d gotten home I looked through my photos and decided to try and paint something myself.

As you may have noticed from my last post in this series, I’m quite good at copying. I have and do paint or draw from my own imagination and they are not bad, but I’m not sure I would put them out on display.

Inspired By Nature

This is the photograph I was inspired by.

IMG_1533

The beautiful Grecian sea in those wonderful turquoise and aquamarine colours. Of course my painting had to be simplified somewhat, my style is too graphic for it to have translated without some simplification.

IMG_1980

So this is what I started with, a basic sketch with a painted sky.

IMG_1981

Then I started to wash in the sea, it took a little tweaking to get it as close as I could to the original photograph. At this point as was still unhappy, but I continued on anyway.

IMG_1982

So I filled in the mountains, added the white building, a tree and some beach furniture. However I’m still not quite satisfied with this, but unfortunately at this point I had to put down my brushes and leave it a few weeks.

IMG_2001

So this is the finished article, and I’m fairly pleased with myself, I think it reflects the colours you find in Greece and I can almost feel the sunshine. All I need now is a frame to hang it on the wall alongside the other pictures we’ve bought or collected on our travels.

But what do you think? Did I pull it off?

Give me your opinion in the comments and don’t forget to subscribe.

Until Next Time

Davita

Monday, August 18, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: Greek Cheese Pie

Dear Readers,

Sorry I’ve been away and occupied. I am trying to get my blogposts out more regularly, new routines with new jobs always take a little getting used to.

Anyway, in spite of the title of this blog, I’m not going to give you a recipe, because you see I’d feel a bit like a cheat.

Bar Flaky Pastry and Cheese

Whilst I was on vacation I ate quite a fair few pieces of this delicious pie, but since I had no idea what went into it bar flaky pastry and cheese I didn’t dare try to re-create my own recipe. I hadn’t the slightest idea where to begin or what cheese to use, so instead I went through my favourite resource for these things, Pinterest and found a recipe on another blog site.

The Shepherd and The Olive Tree had a authentic greek recipe for Tiropita, cheese pie and so I made that with the ingredients I could lay my hands on. Not an easy thing to do in Norway, at least not on this side of the country and certainly not if you don’t wish to increase your mortgage payments to pay for said ingredients. So I bought philo pastry sheets from one of the exotic food markets that have been sprouting up and around Bergen the last 10 years and made my way to Rema 1000 for the Ricotta cheese.

Pleased With The Result

After a week of gathering my ingredients I made it, and I was very pleased with the result. It tasted very like the pie we had eaten whilst abroad, of course with the exception that I had never made this pie before and my cheeses weren’t Greek.

photo

The filling was very yellow, unlike the pie we’d eaten on Samos, but I put this down to the eggs, as I’ve noticed that the yolks in Norwegian eggs are very yellow.

Weekend Recipe

I’ve still got quite a bit of pastry left over so I will try and make this again. It did take a while to bake, so I will probably keep it as a weekend recipe when my hubbie and I aren’t starving as soon as we get through the door and have the time to while away an hour waiting for dinner.

I served this with sausages and a light salad. It went well and was filling enough for us not to have wanted another carb alongside it. With any luck my attempts will improve and I will get confident enough to serve this to friends, I think it would make a great picnic or party dish.

Mrs Egeland’s Other News

I have become an honorary auntie. It seems that a lot of my friends are pregnant at the same time and have had or are having children in the very near future. I just want to congratulate all of my dear friends who are expecting or have had their bundle of joy.

Until next time

Davita

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Mrs Egeland’s Chaos

Hello lovelies,

I would like to apologise for my sudden disappearance. The problem is that I suddenly find myself employed, and its taken up a lot my time and leaving me the weekend to write three posts for your enjoyment. By the time I get to the weekend, I’m a bit sapped for inspiration, and so last week I didn’t post at all. I will try to remedy this, and hopefully once I’m fully in the swing of things I will be fired up to write interesting posts on my art, food and all the other wonderful things you can find here.

In the meantime, don’t forget to subscribe so as not to miss out on my new posts, and why not read a few of my older posts and see what you think? Please comment below, I will respond eagerly as fast as I can.

Until next time

Davita

Monday, August 04, 2014

Mrs Egeland’s Every Day Survival Kit

Hey there, I know that I said that I would show you my painting today, and that it wouldn’t be just another recipe. The thing is I didn’t get time to even start painting this weekend, so instead I decided to show you my everyday survival kit

You Never Know

Ever since I was about 13 or 14 years old and my dad bought the SAS survival handbook I have been interested in knowing how to survive in difficult situations and lets face it life is full of those. I suppose you might call it a case of be-prepared mentality.

I have been alive and in this world for 32 years and my life hasn’t been what you might call typical of someone my age. I have reached the conclusion that most people don’t reach until their 50’s that life is un-plan-able. That the majority of things that happen to you are random acts of coincidence that you never even thought of let alone planned.

Sure you can plan a wedding, a baby or moving house even, those things are the things that you are in control of. You can plan to have further education and getting a degree, but you can’t plan having a career afterwards, at least not anymore, because that doesn’t rely solely on your ability to learn a new skill.

What I’m saying is that in this day and age we have to forever be prepared for those things that we don’t plan, good or bad that come into our lives without warning or notice.

A Lady’s Survival Kit

That’s why I carry a survival kit almost everywhere I go, and I’d like to show you what a woman can carry in her handbag without it being in anyway commando/bear grylls.

IMG_1946

This is my survival wallet, its handmade from some material I had. I always have material of some sort around the house. It has press-studs instead of a zip, just recently I had to customise it again to get some new kit in it.

 

IMG_1940

This! Its a Life Straw, or a portable water refiner that you can drink with. Its lightweight and easy to use. You simply put it in the water you are about to drink and suck like a regular straw. Always handy when you’re not sure if the water your drinking is safe.

IMG_1941

My basic first aid kit: Its not going to help you splint a broken limb or sew up a wound, but with its plasters, sterile padding, wipes, painkillers and anti-histamine it will help you on a trip into the woods, camping or wearing a new pair of shoes.

IMG_1943

Basic supplies: This is very basic, with this I can eat a few extra calories in a extreme survival situation and start a fire. It includes moist towellettes, tabasco sauce and fire lighting material. I would probably be able to survive two days on this while I was waiting to be rescued.

IMG_1944

Nature doesn’t stop just because you’re stuck somewhere without a toilet. A girl has to be prepared for any unexpected moments, no matter where she is. Hairbrush and lipbalm are psychological survival aids. A woman always feels better with tidy hair, loose strands of which make excellent kindling, lipbalm can help with dry lips but also help as an accelerant along with the anti-bac hand lotion.

IMG_1945 Your teeth and mouth are very important and linked to general good health, keeping teeth clean helps no only physically but psychologically. Sewing kit could be used to make things or even sew up wounds. My foldable cup is handy in any situation and these heat producing pads are excellent when trying to stay warm.

I forgot to photograph but also in my kit is a pack of cards, because boredom and worry are the worst things to have to combat whilst in any survival situation.

I depend on my survival kit, its helped with cuts, emergencies and sometimes entertaining small children. I try not to leave the house without it. It even helped me help a lady with a small child who had cut himself quite badly on some glass in the road, thanks to my kit I was able to offer a sterile pad and some plasters.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my survival kit, maybe it will make you consider building your own.

Don’t forget to subscribe and comment below.

Until next time

Davita

Friday, August 01, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: Baked Aubergine With Feta Cheese.

Well dearest readers, I know that I have been giving you quite a few recipes recently. I blame it on my short visit to Greece and the inspiration from all the delicious food we ate there. Which is where I got this delicious recipe.

Let Me Set The Scene

IMG_1596[1]It was our last night in Greece, the air was balmy and the sunset was beautiful with dusky pinks and deep oranges that reflected in the petrol blue coloured sea. We looked over the rooftops towards the sea, listening to the little town settle down for the night. We sat in a rustic little restaurant called Oinomageireion- The Relishes of Urany up in Vathy, at the best table, thanks to Manolis Sp. Kypraios who had a in with the owner. It was the best night we could have had to end a lovely introduction to the magnificent culture of Greece. We drank local wine, and even sampled some of the local Ouzo.

Then we were served our starter of Baked Aubergine with Feta Cheese.

IMG_1598It was delicious and I knew then I had to try and re-create it. This makes enough for two people as a side dish.

You will need:

  • A large Aubergine/Eggplant
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 40 grs of Feta Cheese.

Preheat the oven to about 200ºC in a fan assisted oven. If you have a regular oven, I’d try a little hotter, or baking this a little longer.

IMG_1924Slice the aubergine/eggplant in half lengthwise. Peel and slice the garlic and scatter this over the two aubergine/eggplant halves. Douse with olive oil.

Put in the middle of the oven and bake for about 20-30 minutes, until the skin of the aubergine/eggplant looks a little wrinkled and the top is golden.

Dice the feta cheese and scatter this over the top of the aubergine/eggplant halves and serve.

Re-Creating Memories

It wasn’t exactly the same as the delicious aubergine/eggplant we had at the restaurant, but it did bring back all those lovely memories. I will be making this again!

It goes really well with chicken! Its a great side dish, and I think if you wrapped this in foil it would work great on the barbecue!

I do have one more recipe I’m dying to try from my vacation, but I will leave that until next week. It’s a little heavy on the calories, and I will make it for the weekend.

I promise Monday I will post you a look at my artwork, also inspired by Greece, sorry!

Don’t forget to subscribe and comment below! I’d really love to hear if you tried it and how it went!

Until next time

Davita

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: Frappe, Coldbrew Coffee.

Darlings! Firstly a few updates, I realised the other day that I had neglected to post the photo of the completed handbag that Ms Ester kindly gave a tutorial for, so here you go:

IMG_20130424_093201Secondly, I’ve been listening to a lot of music on Skype lately, and I thought it was only right to share some of my tunes. If you want to see what Mrs Egeland is listening to right now, you will find the link here, or in the link box titled My Favourite and Most Used Sites. I will try and keep it updated, so please follow to see what the “ole gal” enjoys tapping her foot to.

Getting To Cold-Brew Frappe

I told you last time that my travels were inspiring, and that is where this came from. I’m sure everyone has tried Frappe’s, heck, let’s just go ahead and thank Starbucks here.

I have, been a frequent consumer of iced coffee from the above mentioned coffee company and others, but whilst I was in Greece I drank a few from generic coffee bars and restaurants. It was there that I had a Frappe this way for the first time. Of course, my recipe is based on trial and error as I couldn’t get the secret out of our very gracious barkeep at the hotel. So its not quite perfect, but well, when that has that every stopped me from sharing!

You Will Need To Start 12 Hours Ahead

Unfortunately, that’s true. Cold brewing is easy but time consuming, however you can cheat by simply making instant coffee with cold water and stirring vigorously.

IMG_1911If though you are a purist then you won’t mind the wait. So the trick to cold brewing coffee is a couple of table spoons of whatever ground coffee you have available in a jug, jar or large container with cold water overnight. I had espresso coffee so I used that to make my cold-brewed coffee yesterday evening, and this is the result.

  • Cold-brewed coffee
  • 1/2 cup milk of your choice
  • 4 average sized ice cubes or 8 smaller sized ice cubes.

IMG_1914So now you have your cold brewed coffee, filter it and pour yourself a glass, leaving enough room for your milk.

I used my old filter coffee machine filter with a paper coffee filter to filter my coffee.

 

 

In a blender, take your ice cubes and milk and blitz them until they are about the consistency of a smoothie or thick milkshake. Add more ice if your milk isn’t thick enough.

Now you can spoon your icy milk into your cold brew coffee. I tried to pour it, big mistake! It splashed across my kitchen!

Enjoy!

IMG_1917In Greece the milk sat separately above the coffee, well I have no idea how they did that, but I will keep perfecting and keep you posted. This isn’t sweetened and if you want to sweeten it you might want to try a little condensed milk in with your regular milk. Of course you could just forget all about the milk and add vanilla ice cream instead, which of course is delicious and fattening. I might do that at the weekend, but for now, just as the weather here in Bergen has cooled a little I’ll stick with my icy milk.

Noticed my cute new blue candle holders? See, Greece inspired me in more ways than one.

Don’t forget to subscribe and please comment. Tell me what you think? Did you try it?

Until next time

Davita

Monday, July 28, 2014

Imaginative Cookery: A Snack or Breakfast from Greece.

IMG_1666Hello lovelies, well it’s official, I am back from my vacations. It was good to get away and relax, and its been a very inspiring vacation. Let’s hope my renewed energies bring their own reward, and help push on the other important projects like this blog for example and my novel.

The weather here in Norway has been surprisingly beautiful this year. Its been the best, warmest summer so far in 30 years, apparently. Even today, with its overcast chill, and steely coloured sky its 18º Celsius. 

Today, I have a mission, because after almost three weeks away, I have a lot of laundry to do. So it seems inevitable that, that is what I will be doing today. But I also have to find homes for some of our acquisitions, like the three little blue candle holders I bought because they reminded me of Greece, or the vintage wooden rolling pin and an equally lovely vintage table mincer that we found in a second hand shop on our travels. 

Well, well, but I didn’t come here to write about all of that. I wanted to share my newest breakfast recipe with you. You see, spending all that time in the beautiful Greek sunshine, with their delicious Greek food made me come home and want to try to recreate some of the recipes, to recreate the sensation of those lovely Grecian days.

Sometimes the most delicious things are the simplest to make. Unfortunately I don’t have photos of the finish product, or in fact all the ingredients. But you guys don’t need a step by step photographic how to. You are all smart enough to understand what I write.

So Here’s What You’ll Need!IMG_1907

  • Greek or Greek style yogurt.
  • Walnuts, chopped.
  • Fresh fruit of your choice.
  • Honey.

Whilst we were in Greece we bought some delicious local honey, which is dark and sweet. I use it on my breakfast, probably not exactly low fat but certainly delicious.

In your breakfast bowl put the fresh fruit of your choice, I cheated a little here because I haven’t had time as yet to go to the supermarket and we had tinned peaches in the cupboard so I used those.

Then spoon over the Greek, or Greek style yogurt. Its never going to as good as the yogurt in Greece, simply because of the atmosphere.

Sprinkle the chopped nuts over the yogurt and then drizzle honey over the top and enjoy.

Your Done!

I’m not sure how low calorie this is. I think though that eating fresh fruit, nuts and yogurt every morning is a healthy habit to start, and maybe honey isn’t the most slimming extra but well ask any beekeeper how to rid yourself of hay fever and they will tell you to eat the honey made of the pollen of the plant you are allergic too. Something to remember as well as the other health benefits that honey has.

I hope you enjoy it. I think its delicious!

Until next time

Davita

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Creative Style: Summer Nail Design

So my time of rest and relaxation has inspired me to some creativity. The sunshine has inspired some summery nail art and choice of colours, which is why I tried this nail design.

To be honest I would have liked to do it in the colours associated with Greece, blue, white and turquoise except I haven’t had time to buy the colours I am missing, so this is what I came up with. So tell me what you think. This designs takes a while to dry, due to the amount of coats of colour and the top coat, so make sure you have plenty of time to do nothing while it dries.

So Here’s How It Goes

You will need:IMG_1607

  • A base coat
  • A white coloured varnish
  • A fuscia or bright pink coloured varnish
  • A blue or steel coloured metallic varnish
  • A top coat

 

This Is How Its DoneIMG_1610

  1. You know how I feel, start with clean hands and nails. File and shape the nails before you begin. Then paint your nails with a base coat.
  2. Once your base coat is dry, paint your nails with two coats of the white colour. Don’t forget to clean up the nail base and sides if you spill as you go. Let that dry
  3. IMG_1612Now you going to make a geometric design. With one sweep of the pink colour, from the base of the nail, diagonally to the opposite side of the top of the nail. so you end up with a pink triangle over half of your nail. You want this to be two coats, so that the colour really sings. Allow to dry.
  4. Once that is dry do one coat of top coat. This will harden the colours without effecting the metallic.
  5. IMG_1616Make another triangle of colour, this time, a smaller triangle on top of the pink colour. The bottom corner of this triangle should touch the white, or come as close as you can to it at least.
  6. Do one more coat over the metallic.
  7. Sit and wait for it to dry, about 40 mins to touch dry and maybe a little over an hour till its completely set.

This looks great with my tan, such as it is. I’m English, the typical English Rose type and so tanning takes a long time and a lot of sunscreen. Anyway, I like it, I hope you do too. Please subscribe and I’d love to read your comments and see any photos of your nail designs.

Well until next time,

Davita

Monday, July 21, 2014

Mrs Egeland’s Greek Holiday

IMG_1405[1]ΣΑΜΟΣ or Samos, the Greek island where the Apostle Paul visited amongst many that’s mentioned in Acts 20:15. An island of authentic Greek charm, this is no Disney-fied Greece of the type you might find on other islands. This is where the Greek come to relax, visit at your peril, the people are charming and the scenery is breath-taking. It’s easy to fall in love with this place. It mightn’t be as prettied up as Santorini or Mykonos, but it has charm with its varied architecture of multiple eras, its lush green environment and turquoise sea. We were Greek virgins (so to speak, we had never been to Greece before) we had travelled often to the noisy dusty chaos that is Southern Spain, that dirty little mischief, but we had never experienced the tranquillity of the Greeks, the sophistication of an ancient civilisation and the easy relaxation that the grace of Greece naturally brings.

Gagou Beach

IMG_1425[1]We arrived at our hotel, Samos Bay Beach hotel and quickly acclimatised to the easy routine of breakfast, coffee on the balcony of the Sunset bar and the subsequent lazy days of lying in the sun, swimming in the beautiful Aegean sea and walking around Samos Town. IMG_1429[1]The staff at the Samos Bay Beach hotel were gracious, hospitable, kind and very helpful. My tip. relax, get to know the staff. There’s no need to hurry, no rush, no stress, these people aim to give you the best experience they can, let them. They are very good at their jobs. Smile, say hello. You will find that they will reciprocate.

Capriccio Gelateria

IMG_1536[1]Whilst walking around Samos Town we found an Italian Gelateria, the ice cream was some of the best I have ever tasted and we soon found ourselves gravitating to the little gelateria every evening. My favourite? Two balls of ice cream in a cone or a cup, one ball of cioccolate bitter and one of menta. That’s dark chocolate and mint to the rest of us… IMG_1603[1]It’s like After Eights ice cream. The cioccolate bitter tastes like Italian chocolate mousse, rich, heavy, and chocolatey. The menta is creamy and minty fresh. The owners of the Capriccio Gelateria are Italian and have lived in Greece for 16 years, Luciano and Laura Cottura. All their ice cream is homemade, in a sterilised room above the shop, they all have delicious sorbets if you don’t want or can’t eat ice cream. Their daughter Barbara is a talented baker and makes fantastic cake creations. All in all, a gourmet family!

Samos Travel Services

We decided, once we’d arrived in Samos, that we wanted to make the effort to visit Patmos. To see where the Apostle John, the last and youngest of Jesus’ apostles was directed to write the book of Revelation. It was a moving experience for me, to know that I was standing in the same place as the Apostle John had stood before me. But enough of that!

IMG_1594[1]What I really wanted to mention was the great service we got from Samos Travel Services. Manolis Sp. Kypraios arranged our trip to Patmos and since we were the only two for that tour that particular day with him, he generously picked us up in his car from our hotel and escorted us to Pythagoras port where we could board the boat to Patmos. He was clever, witty and very kind. Upon our return to Pythagoras port, he picked us up to return us to our hotel and showed us the old town of Vathy and recommended an excellent Greek restaurant.

Oinomageireion, The relishes of Urany

That’s the name of the amazing restaurant Manolis recommended. We went there for our last meal in Samos on our last day. The food was superb, its a family run business. Grandma is head chef, Grandpa, father and son run front of house. We had a marvellous view over Samos, watching the sun go down with a glass of local white wine, ouzo, local bread and traditional Greek dishes. IMG_1598[1]IMG_1599[1]IMG_1602[1]

All in all, it was one of the most delightful holidays we’ve ever had, and my only regret was that we didn’t stay longer. We’ve made friends and will be returning to this beautiful island of Samos.

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Until next time

Davita

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Domestic Divines: Ms Ester’s Handbag Tutorial

So I am back for a while and look what a gift we’ve been given. Aren’t you a lucky lot! The fabulous Ms Ester, whom I interviewed here, has kindly given me and therefore you a wonderful tutorial. Translated by me, Mrs Egeland.
Sometimes we have to take little things from home to one place or another, and we can never find how to do that. This project is especially made for those situations, when you have to transport all those little things we need to hand in a cute and fun little bag, that allows to enjoy moments of entertainment and leisure time.
Its so easy that you can make in a moment and enjoy it for longer. You will find that once you’ve made one, you won’t be able to stop. It makes for an original gift for friends, and surely you won’t only enjoy making it but by giving it as a gift you’ll also be making others happy. 
 

Here’s The How To

Materials:
  • Cardboard
  • 2 fabrics for the exterior 30x22 cm and for the handles 4x33
  • 2 fabrics for the interior 30x22 cm
  • Fabric for the applique decoration
  • 2 waddings 30x22 cm
Step 1: We cut the fabric and the handles.
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Step 2: We draw two shapes on the cardboard. 
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Step 3: We cut out the pattern with paper scissors and then use it to cut out the same shapes from Visofix paper that is sticks on one side.
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Step 4: Next we cut the pattern out of a different fabric from the exterior fabric. We sew this to the exterior fabric to decorate it. I used a blanket stitch so that the heart wouldn’t fray.
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Step 5: We sew the straps for the handles. Turn them right way around and iron them.
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Step 6: Now we start assembling our little bag. To do that we put the wadding, next the exterior fabric the right way up and one of the handles, on top of that the lining fabric the wrong way up. We sew the top. We do the same with other part of the bag.
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Step 7: Now we open the two parts, right with right, so that the linings are together in one half, and we sew the edge leaving a part of the lining open, in this way we can use it to turn the little bag the right way around. We sew a triangle in the four corners and cut the rest of the fabric, to make the shape of the bag more squared off. 
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Step 8: Turn the little bag the right way around, and sew with opening in the lining with invisible stitch.
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And now the adorable little bag is finished. I hope you enjoy it and that you enjoy sewing it.
 

Mrs Egeland’s Final Thank You

That is a wonderful tutorial and I’m sure that everyone will enjoy making it. Thank you so very much Ms Ester!
Don’t forget, dear readers, to subscribe and comment. We’d love to see photos of your bags.
Until next time,
Davita