The weather has been exceptionally nice this week, expect for right now of course. While it is pouring down at this very moment just yesterday I was enjoying the sunshine at the Chinese Tower in the English Garden with friends.
With spring in full bloom I also wanted to add a few new touches to the apartment. A recent trip to IKEA was the perfect opportunity to pick up some new plants (that have been doing pretty good so far – go me!) and to make plans for our balcony (right now it looks pretty sad with no furniture, plants etc.).
I currently have a big thing for succulents and couldn’t resist adding the beautiful violet/grey one on the right to my little succulent family (another IKEA purchase). So far I still feel a little clueless about succulent care and have been pretty cautious with watering them so as not to kill them, but I have been doing some research and really like this blog for succulent advice.
And just for good measure here are a couple of sunny pictures from a nice walk through north Schwabing, where we also passed the pretty Nordfriedhof:
Happy Monday! x
As I have already mentioned a few times before I live in a small one-bedroom apartment. We are talking one room with a built-in kitchen, a bathroom and a short hallway. Oh and there is also a fairly spacious balcony. (I am really excited to use it come spring and summer!)
You might read this and think – “hey, a one bedroom apartment sounds just fine!” – I should have mentioned that I don’t have the apartment all to myself but I actually share it with my boyfriend. So you can imagine with all of our stuff combined it does get pretty cozy in here.
After six months in this apartment I thought I would share some of my tips for making a small space work:
1) Keep things clean
A small space can look really messy really quickly, so we try to make sure that we do the dishes after a meal and put things away as we go. That way the space doesn’t feel as chaotic and cluttered. I generally dislike cleaning but one thing that has kind of made it easier is my new 15 min clean-up rule: Everyday I do some kind of quick cleaning for the duration of 15 minutes (I made a fun playlist to keep me entertained). 15 minutes is a time frame that is easy to manage/to squeeze in to a busy schedule and you can actually get a lot done in that time. Another thing which has totally made my week is that we have finally found a nice cleaning lady who comes in once every two weeks to do a deep clean.
2) Organize, organize, organize
Storage boxes and the like are your best friends. Having all your belongings organized and stored in a regular spot makes things look neat and feel inviting. Having many things out (for display or because of pure laziness) can make a small space look cluttered and appear even smaller than it is. So try to find systems that work for you and that you will actually stick to. It is not an easy task but once you have a proper systems things will be so much easier to tidy up and to maintain looking nice and fresh.
3) Be a minimalist
Be realistic and don’t bring too much stuff into a small apartment. This may be the most difficult of all the tips but really try to keep things minimalistic and size down to the absolute necessities. Especially with two people, the closet, shelves etc. fill up really quickly. When I was packing for my move I tried to be really strict with myself and I still ended up bringing more that I needed (after a few months I actually dropped the unused items off at my parents house for the time being). Thinking seasonally really helps here, so I tend to only keep clothes at the apartment that are weather appropriate.
4) Save space
There are so many cool designs for small spaces – just look at the IKEA site and it will give you some inspiration for making the most out of a small space. Anything multipurpose or fold-up is great! Although our apartment is tiny we can bust out a proper dining table that seats up to 6 – all because of fold-up wooden chairs and a very convenient fold-up table with storage drawers!
There you have my tips on living comfortably in a small space. I thought it would be fun to actually show you some of my favorite storage/organizing solutions around the apartment during the next few weeks. So keep your eyes peeled for that!
Happy Tuesday! x
It is a sad fact that my current apartment does not have an oven and so whenever I am visiting my parents I will bake a couple of things to bring back to Munich with me. There is just nothing like homemade cake and cookies…sigh
Today I want to share one of my staple cookie recipes with you. I have adjusted this recipe over time and am very happy with my current version. It is nice and crisp on the outside and softer on the inside. The dough has a nice caramel-y flavour which complements the rich dark chocolate pieces perfectly.
300-350g sugar <>
500g spelt flour
1 tsp salt
1,5 tsp baking soda
1,5 tsp baking powder
This dough is super easy. Start by creaming the butter/oil with the sugar. Add eggs one by one. Add vanilla extract. Add flour and baking soda, baking powder. Mix to incorporate. Lastly add chocolate chips.
You can store the dough in the fridge for up to three days. I find that the flavour actually intensifies when not baking immediately. So if you have the time I recommend storing it in fridge over night before baking the cookies.
Bake cookies at 180°C until golden on the edges (around 15 to 18 minutes).
I am a birthday enthusiast. For me the days (or week) preceding my actual birthday are almost equally as exciting. I enjoy making different plans to celebrate with friends and to treat myself a little bit. Like almost every year I spent my actual birthday at my parents’ house and celebrated with my whole family. It was a beautiful weekend filled with some of my favorite things:
Taking long walks with our dog
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Board game marathon with a taboo showdown
Going to the farmers’ market for some fresh produce
Seeing the first signs of spring
Delicious french food
My mom’s homemade green smoothies
Taking a hot bubble bath
On chilly mornings there is just nothing better than a warming breakfast to start the day of right. I have been whipping this recipe up so much lately that I thought it was about time to dedicate a little post to it. It is incredibly easy to make and you can get really creative with your toppings so that it never feels boring or repetitive.
Easy Porridge (one big serving)
200-250ml milk (plant-based or dairy)
4-5 heaping tablespoons rolled oats (I use quick oats but old-fashioned work great as well)
1 teaspoon coconut oil
a pinch of salt
1 mashed up banana
Method: place all ingredients in a small pot over medium to high heat. Stir until the mixture starts to bubble then reduce heat to low. Continue to stir until the mixture gets the desired creamy consistency (about 1 to 2 minutes). Pour into a bowl and top with your favourite fruit, seeds, nut butters etc.
Variations and topping ideas:
If you like berries they are fantastic on top or mixed into your porridge depending on your preference. Raspberries and blueberries are my favorites!
Nut butters are heavenly drizzled on top of the steaming porridge. I prefer almond butter, but hazelnut butter tastes great with it, too.
Chia seeds are a staple porridge topping for me. They are super healthy and give a nice crunch to the porridge.
Dried fruit works well both mixed into the porridge if you want to soften it or on top to give some texture. I like goji berries the best!
If you can get your hands on one try pomegranate on top! Trust me – sooo good! Any fruit will do really. Just give it a try and you will find your favorite combinations.
The possibilities are endless, really. Be creative!
Bon appétit! x
Last week I took advantage of the sunny weather to take a nice walk through Luitpoldpark in Schwabing (Oh the joys of semester break! The possibilities feel nothing short of endless!). I had never been before, usually heading straight to the English Garden for my walks, but it was a nice change in scenery. Luitpoldpark is much smaller than the English Garden and doesn’t quite give the same feeling of serenity because you can still hear the muted noise of nearby construction sites and traffic but it nevertheless offers some really nice winding pathways and great views of the city center from a viewpoint up the hill (if you look closely you can spot the Alps in the distance!).
I feel very lucky that Munich offers such vast and beautiful green areas spread out across the city to counterbalance the noisy bustle of urban life and I cannot wait for some warmer weather to really make the most of it!
The past few weeks have been pretty uneventful with me glued to the desk studying for finals which is maybe why I am especially exited about these favorites because they were my study break rewards and energy rechargers. And man do I look forward to my study breaks! I am all for positive reinforcement and rewarding myself for being productive. It helps me so much to stay focused and motivated.
So without further ado here are some my favorites of january and february:
1. Amazon Fire TV – a Christmas gift that has proven to be super addicting with full seasons of some of my favorite TV shows and recent movies. What is better than a 20 min sitcom break from studying?
2. Alnatura Honey Waffles – these are really delicious and the perfect afternoon snack with a nice cup of tea!
3. The Imitation Game – this is the best movie that I have seen in a long time! I hope Benedict Cumberbatch will be rewarded with an Oscar this weekend!
4. Taylor Swift – 1989– my studying soundtrack. I find it hard to work without some sort of background music to keep me entertained.
5. Pukka Grean Tea with Matcha – a really tasty green tea with an extra kick of caffeine. Perfect for studying!
6. Turtlenecks – I have absolutely adored wearing turtlenecks this winter. So comfy and cozy! I have finally found one that is just right and I cannot get enough of it.
7. Bullet Journal – This little gem has made my days so much more productive and well organised! I have written a whole blog post about my set-up and experience if you are interested.
PS: Exams are over and done and I am thrilled that I have the next month off from uni! EEK!
Ok, here is the deal. When I work out (especially in public) I like to look cute. It is comforting to know that you look nice despite your tomato head and attractive sweatiness. For workout wear my top priority is comfort. The fit needs to be just right with good quality material and a functional design – I am a sucker for little zip pockets for my keys/thumb loops etc..
Some of my favorite brands for workout wear include Lululemon, a love affair that started way back in the day when I was living in Canada, and Nike. I own multiple pieces by each brand and they are still in stellar condition after years of wash and wear. While stalking their online shops the other day I put a few pieces on my wish list that I wanted to share with you. I think this outfit would be perfect for going on a run or to the gym.
1. Lululemon running cropped pants
2. Striped Nike sports bra
3. Lululemon Aqua long sleeve shirt
PS: I am still on BBG week one…it is intense!
At the start of a new year I always feel inspired to make some positive changes in my life, whether they may be big or small. Right now I am focusing on being more active. Since moving to Munich last fall I haven’t really been working out (unless you count some half-assed Pilates I did in my living room) and I have realized that I miss it. It is definitely hard to get back into some sort of workout routine, but I know that I will feel better in the long run.
So far I have been trying to exercise at home three times a week. I either use YouTube videos for instructions (if I don’t have a proper plan I end up not trying hard enough) or other workout routines that I have come across on blogs/fitness sites. This week I have been giving the much raved about Kayla Itsines BBG (bikini body guide) a go – I am still on the free trial week but it is so intense that I have not been able to finish the whole circuit yet…I am probably going to stick with week one for the next couple of weeks or until I can actually get through the whole circuit before I decide whether I want to proceed with this program or use something else. Have any of you tried or even completed this program? Any thoughts on it?
Another thing that I find quite motivating is cute workout wear. I have recently invested in a pair of good running shoes (I am still waiting for some warmer weather to actually start with the running…) and added a few other pieces here and there to keep me inspired.
Tonight is time for my BBG abs workout – wish me luck! x
This past weekend was so nice and relaxing. I had decided to take a much-needed break from studying and instead enjoy the beautiful weather.
We went for a stroll and some window shopping through the city center of Munich and stopped by Viktualienmarkt where I picked up a butternut squash for a new recipe I wanted to try (healthy mac and cheese! yum!) and finished up the day by seeing the Imitation Game at the cinema – such a good movie with stellar performances by Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley!
I am getting more and more excited for spring and while there is still some snow left on the roofs and on the sidewalks I can’t help but look forward to some warmer weather!
Happy february! x