You may remember my May's Mini Goals: I'm super proud to say I'm keeping faith to all my promises: as you may see I went back to watercolor painting and I'm really enjoying it, I also started reading Game of Thrones, I'm sticking to my routine about everyday, and I also had the opportunity to visit new places. A only trip into nature wasn't what I was thinking, but I unfortunately have to shift my plans to next month. Last week though, when I still was able to walk properly and wasn't bounded to bed with a bandaged foot, me and my boyfriend had a lovely day exploring a new natural place we both found super lovely.
We passed the afternoon in this cute place where three rivers meet, walking down little tree-lined paths surrounded by nature, flowers, water's and little animals sounds and we even found a little place where to start our project of creating our own Relationship Photo Album. It was so refreshing eating some delicious and all natural Yu! Just Fruit Chews in Strawberry* while immersed in the nature and during such a warm sunny spring day. We walked on a super tight shaky footbridge over the biggest river - which was a bit scary but the view was beautiful, and I found a new little friend over my shoulder: a cute ladybug. When it was time for icecream we simply went for it as the weather was warm enough and we were pretty hungry: chocolate and sour black cherries is always been my favorite flavor (do you remember?).
I'm so happy and enthusiast about this wonderful place that I really want to come back in the upcoming future, but I have a lot of other plans for next month! But this is the proof you don't have to go far to find a breathtaking natural place where to spend a healthy afternoon, and I promise I won't forget about this place when we won't know where to pass our afternoons in summertime.
Did you visit any natural places around you recently?
It all started with me gitfing some polaroid instagram pictures to my boyfriend for his birthday and then again for Christmas last year, and since then I was thinking of creating a sort of photo diary of our relationship. I know nowadays you can pay someone to print your photo diary for you, but we thought to do it the old classic way and print our pictures, buy a cute photo album, and together stick all our pictures we made together in a cronological order to always have some illustrated memories at our fingertips.
We hadn't a lot of actual big good quality pictures together but we saved some on our phones and I decided to print them in a cute polaroid shape last year, and for this purpose Polagram came so useful. It's a super handy iPhone app (also available on Android) that make you choose between your phone's pictures and actually print them for only a few pounds. They send them to your home within only a few days in a super cute pink envelope which is adorable, however there's also Printic which is a very similar app with slightly different prices. They both allow you to choose between different sizes and styles and always have super convenient discounts if you're subscribed to their newsletters.
Back in March though, we went for a trip to London, our first trip together on our very own, and brought a proper camera with us and took a lot of good quality pictures. We recently decided to print them together with our pictures we started taking with a proper camera since then, and we chose a bigger format for our good quality pictures. Photobox came in our help when it was all about printing up to 80 pictures all together for a reasonable price, and I'm so happy with all of them! They are big and look beautiful and fit perfectly with the style we decided to go for our photo album.
Talking about photo albums, I just fell in love with the Paperchase Kraft Scrap Book With Ribbon (£8.50) as soon as I saw it on ASOS and simply had to get it so I did. It such a good quality album and even if it's not an actual photo album, it's perfect for this purpose and we managed to make it look super simple and elegant on the inside as it is on the outside. I love the black ribbon and the rusty feeling it has, such a simple and neutral style with just a little feminine touch which is perfect for our little project.
Creating something together is super nice and fun, we had a really good time choosing our pictures, looking and laughing at them, finding a little cute natural place where to start sticking them to our album and doing the actual hard work was really nice and relaxing as everything else when made with your better half on your side. We decided together to go for some Transparent Photo Corners instead of tape to make it look more put together and avoid to stick anything on our pictures. They are a bit of a pain when it comes to apply them to your photos, but the final result is beautiful and the best part of it is that we can move our pictures where we want anytime. We aren't even halfway through the 100 pages of our album and we can't wait for having other pictures to be printed in the upcoming future! I can't suggest a nicer craft project to do with your better half - and let me tell you, even boys can actually enjoy something like this as it's the best way to go back through all your memories together and re-live them all, storing them in a safe, cute and forever yours little place.
Do you like the idea of a relationship memories album?
I'm having a really tough time recently trying so hard to avoid dairy food as I'm almost sure cheese is not well accepted by my own body. I never drink cow milk since a year or so and this was a big step, but cheese is my little weakness and removing it completely from my diet is too hard. I'm trying to eat it the least I can though, and one big step I've made is to stop including it in all the recipes I try even if they don't really need its presence. On the other hand I love tofu and I've always eaten tofu vegetarian meatballs with a lot of parmesan cheese included in the mixture, but recently I adapted my original recipe to my temporary non-dairy diet and they come out pretty good, so I wanted to share them with you...
For 5 tofu balls you'll need:
- 180g Tofu
- 1 medium egg
- 4 tablespoons chopped zucchini
- 2 + 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon + a pinch of salt
First thing I always do is chopping the tofu into little squares and throwing it into the mixer until it's all super finely chopped. I then move it into a big bowl and add an egg to the mixture, this will make it more sticky and it will be easier to build together our tofu balls in the end. I then added 4 tablespoons of chopped zucchini to enrich the taste, but here you can add whatever vegetable you'd like, I sometimes go for some lightly stir-fried leek or onion, but I also love them with some chopped eggplant, tomatoes or peppers. I then added two tablespoons of bread crumbs to make my mixture a bit thicker and lastly 1/2 teaspoon of salt. I mixed all together and then started shaping five medium balls out of it, rolled them in two (or so) tablespoons of bread crumbs and then fried them in a pan on both sides until they were golden brown. Lastly I dusted a pinch of salt on top.
If you don't like how tofu taste but want to add it to your diet for any kind of reason, this is the perfect recipe for you - it's so good and tasty, and you can spice it up as you desire to make it better to your own taste. These are so delicious, completely vegetarian, not too heavy but a complete meal and can be pared with a good old rich salad or just eaten on their own, they can also be stored and eaten a few hours later, maybe at work, just lightly reheated in a microwave. This little, super quick and easy recipe is now a staple of my vegetarian diet and I couldn't live without my super yummy tofu balls, so hopefully you can enjoy them as well!
Will you try this recipe?
For many years of my life I lived passively and never really came across something I was very passionate about and that catched my attention and made me enjoy what I was doing. Recently though, as every spring or even more this year, I'm opening my windows and letting some fresh air to come in my life and as a result of this, even though I haven't even started catching up with my biggest dreams and plans, I and my soul definitely feel a lot better and I can definitely see how embracing life and what it has to bring without regrets and not being trapped in a commitment I don't like is changing my general mood and my own way to approach a lot of different situations. You know that feeling of a breath of fresh air when spring comes and you just feel like winter is over and it's time to be productive and creative - this is exactly how I'm feeling right now that my life is changing so fast but in a super sweet kind of way. I feel productive and creative, I always have a lot of new ideas and projects in mind and I simply love that feeling when, like opening a window after a long winter, you have to think that it's all changing towards a better direction. Having goals in life is the best way to live, having big and little goals to follow is what makes you go on strongly and helps you grow, so I finally came up with this new big goal of stopping myself of not having big goals and dreams in life anymore.
You may already know I'm a combination skin girl and having combination skin isn't as easy as it sounds when it comes to pick up some skincare products as depending on your own skin you may need some hydrating products as well as a few spot treatments. I have a little selection of products that work wonders on me and I wanted to share them, but even though I call them "combination skin heroes" please always remember your skin is surely different from mine and some of them may don't work for you as they do on me.
Although when I remove my makeup I often go for something on the oily side (oily products are the best in removing waterproof makeup), there's nothing better than the feeling of a bit of Bioderma Sebium H2O (£9.99) which is very similar to the original Bioderma micellar water but for oily or combination skins. This isn't as good in removing my eye makeup as the original Bioderma and it's slightly fragranced, but is very soothing and leave my skin always feeling cleaner but not dehydrated. It's thought to help in getting rid of impurities and in giving a smooth skin's texture. Something to use on a daily basis is the Aveeno Cream (£6.99) which is for me the perfect day face moisturizer: containing oatmeal it aims to hydrate dry and sensitive skin, but I think this is great for combination skin as well as it sinks in super easly, hydrates but not too much and is very light on the skin so that it can be applied under your makeup as well.
I have acne prone skin and I always want to keep cystic acne and spot at bay, and my most loyal ally against breakouts are BHAs which make the world of good for my skin and really works in avoiding spots and keeping my acne at bay. I love the Effaclar range from La Roche-Posay and my skin can't be more thankful to both the Astringent Micro-Exfoliant Lotion (£10.20) and the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo (£13.15). Both contains BHAs to help gently exfoliate over clogged pores, control shine and avoid the appearance of blemishes, but the former comes in a toner shape which I use after cleansing my skin, and the latter is a lovely and light serum to be applied before your usual moisturizer which truely makes wonders in keeping acne at bay. Another amazing product for acne prone skins is the Decleor Prolagene Lift Peeling Gel* (£46.50) which contains AHAs instead and is a chemical exfoliator to be used once or twice a week when you feel your skin need a detoxifying treatment. This acts in only 5 minutes and it's super easy to use and rinse off, but it really works wonders in exfoliating your skin and leaving a smoother complexion.
For dull skin days or a weekend treat I love having a face mask session and the best in suiting my skin are the Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask (£21.50) and the Soap & Glory No Clogs Allowed Detox Mask (£11.50). The former is super nice for combination skin as it brings the right amount of hydration while having also antibacterical properties and for that reason is also perfect for avoiding blemishes to appear. I also use this as overnight treatment on any blemish or spot I want to get rid of, and when comes the morning I always see a huge improvement. The latter is perfect for who has a combination to oily skin and need a little detox treatment now and again as this blue mask really helps to purify pores and avoiding shine.
Do you have any combination skin hero?