Friday, December 30, 2016

Apple Cider Soda (2 ways)

reading time: 2 min

Hey guys, I took a short Christmas break on Wednesday, but now I'm back, and I'm ready for New Year's :)

If you've found yourself with a soda or sugar addiction, it can be a hard habit to kick. But these simple sparkling apple cider drinks are both healthy and refreshing. They are non-alcoholic because personally I don't enjoy the taste of alcohol, but of course you can make a "grown-up" version of these by adding brandy, rum, Champagne, ginger liqueur or whatnot. I'm also not a huge carbonation fan, but these fizzy drinks actually float my boat (is that even how you use that saying?!).

Anyway. Cheers and a happy new year!

Friday Favorites - Week 353

The last Friday Favorites of the year has come around. Isn't it crazy how fast this year has gone by? I hope you're all ready to wipe off the old year and embrace the new! For me, the next year brings a lot of change, uncertainties, the end of my time at uni, and overall new beginnings. As much as this stresses me out, it also brings a lot of potential for positive changes in my life. Letting go of the old. 

Now for this linky party, I've gone for an amazing recipe for a cranberry sugar scrub in case you still have some cranberries left from Thanksgiving and Christmas that makes for a lovely present to your mom, your sister or just yourself.

Without further ado, here's some inspiration to take into the new year! 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Oatmeal

reading time: 1 min

In an attempt to further support you in staying healthy during the holidays, here is a super healthy and filling oatmeal option for breakfast. It's nutty, fruity, sweet and satisfying. 

Friday, December 23, 2016

Weekly Meal Plan CW 51

(click to enlarge)

Hey guys,

since Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are coming up this weekend, I thought it would be the best time to share what I've been eating for the past week. Hopefully this will serve as inspiration and motivation to eat as healthy as possible over the holidays :)

Friday Favorites - Week 352

Welcome to one last Christmas themed party! If you are you looking for SUPER last-minute gifts, I've got a DIY bath salt tutorial for you. All you need is epsom salt, sea salt, baking soda and a few drops of essential oil. So the only thing that isn't already in your pantry, is epsom salt and perhaps a lovely essential oil in a wintry scent such as orange, cinnamon or vanilla (or all three).

Now, I don't want to keep you from enjoying your holiday break (or your last minute Christmas preparation), so let's not waste any more time and get straight to the party!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

5 Ways to De-Stress and Relax

reading time: 4 min

relax, de-stress, calm down, tips, advice, inspiration, lifestyle, nature, peace

Hello lovely people,

we all know Christmas can be a surprisingly stressful and exhaustive time of year, and if we don't take care of ourselves we easily can get too caught up with all the things that need sorting out before we sit down at the holiday table. 

Usually we only treat ourselves to a relaxing pamper session when we have spare time - however, I think that this is exactly the opposite of what we should be doing! Instead, we should make time for ourselves in particularly stressful and overwhelming moments.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

3 Outfits for New Year's Eve and Christmas

reading time: 3 min

Need some ideas for some upcoming holiday parties? Whether you are up to a fun game night with friends, a casual family get-together or a girl's night out, I've got an outfit for you!

Honestly, this is the closest that I ever got to being a "fashion" blogger, lol. And I'm far from perfect - there's an ugly radiator behind of me, mirror tiles all over my body, spots on my face that I didn't bother to airbrush out from all the Christmas cookies that I've been eating lately, the wall behind me is a weird beige colour, and the patrol shade of the carpet definitely clashes with my outfits. But oh well. I did my best (we shot this on my boyfriend's birthday in the new-and-still-empty house of my flatmate who will move out of our flat next year, sniff), and as much as I want to have a bright house with white walls to take photos, I don't. So yeah, here's my take on fashion blogging - enjoy :)

And let me know what you think of my outfit ideas!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Friday Favorites - Week 351

Hello lovely bloggy friends,

are you fed up with all the Christmas related parties and posts yet? I have to admit, I'm getting a little tired of the whole Christmas hype and everything (although I actually just posted a Christmas Brownie recipe myself, to be honest)... which is why I chose a healthy chocolate muffin recipe for this linky party that is not only appropriate for Christmas season, but for any other time of the year as well.

How are you all doing? Have you already bought all your Christmas presents, or are you running late as I usually do? 

But now, it's time for the party! 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Healthy Fudgy Christmas Brownies (Vegan + GF)

reading time: 2 min

It's hard to believe that this is actually my very first Christmas recipe this year! (safe for the hot chocolate, if that counts as Christmas related). It's probably also the healthiest Christmas recipe, at least in terms of brownies. These babies are soft, fudgy, moist, fruity and healthy in the most gooey, chocolaty and yummy way!

These brownies are heaven for any allergy sufferers in the family: they are gluten-free, fat-free, egg-free, dairy-free, legume-free, soy-free, as good as sugar-free and vegan of course. They can even be made nut-free.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

How To Throw a Fantasy Murder Mystery Dinner

reading time: 6 min

murder mystery, dinner, party, fantasy, nerd, hobby,

Nerd alert! Last weekend, a bunch of my friends and I met up at a friend's for a super geeky and fun Fantasy Murder Mystery Dinner that we got as a present for our friend's birthday.

But first: What is a mystery dinner and how do you host it?

A mystery dinner is a party game paired with a dinner theatre, in which the play is a murder mystery, and the diners are invited to solve the mystery as they eat and play. I would estimate that the typical murder mystery could be completed within 2 to 3 hours, although if you linger over drinks and appetizers or dessert, the night can go on as long as you wish.

Friday, December 09, 2016

Friday Favorites - Week 350

Hey guys,

I'll keep it short and sweet today - I know, I'm already late to the party, but this week has been crazy busy. Yesterday was my boyfriend and I's 2 year anniversary, tomorrow is my boyfriend's birthday as well as a big party at our house, and today we decided on two new future flatmates... All that while trying to work on my master's thesis and trying to keep up with my blog. Oh and Christmas presents need to be purchased!! 

Anyway, let's get to the party ASAP!

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Lifestyle Favorites ❤ November /16

reading time: 4 min

Hello friends, how are you all doing? I've just had the most Christmas-y and cookie-licious weekend.

This time I come to you with a quite miscellaneous Lifestyle Favourites post, a bit of Christmas and cookies, a bit of movies and British queens, a bit of Elvish hair and exercise. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 04, 2016

The Best Hot Chocolate (that happens to be vegan)

reading time: 2 min

hot chocolate, vegan, drink, non-dairy, dessert, recipe, snack, chocolate

Today you're in for a treat

To be honest, I haven't had real hot chocolate in years! And by "real" I don't mean the cocoa that comes in the packets, as I refuse to drink that stuff which is mostly just sugar, skim milk powder and little chocolate. I also don't mean the good quality cacao powder whisked into almond milk (which is also quite nice) - I mean the rich "melt real chocolate in your milk" type.

Decadent, right?

Friday, December 02, 2016

Winter Phone Wallpapers

reading time: 1 min

Are you all getting into the Christmas spirit yet? Or are you already annoyed of all the Christmas-themed posts these days. Personally, I can't get enough of Christmas this year, since I "missed" the typical wintry, cosy Christmas last year due to spending the holidays in South Africa. Some people have their trees up already, but since I can't afford my own Christmas tree yet (and honestly I'm not sure if I really want a tree to be chopped just for the sake of standing and dying in my living room), I'm getting festive by changing my phone background to a more winter appropriate theme!

So I've put together this collection of 24 of my favourite winter inspired phone wallpapers (that can be used as lock screen or phone background). Click "read more" to view all of them!

Friday Favorites - Week 349

Hello hello,

are you ready for another linky party? This time it was really hard for me to pick just one of your great links!  

Angie's DIY Grinch Mason Jar is the most adorkable and brilliantly easy Christmas decor idea ever, and Rachel's recipe for Slow Cooker Hot Apple Cider looks super good as well... However, in honour of my German origin I decided to go for a traditional German Christmas cake(?) and something that reminds me of my own childhood: Frau Tschi Tschi's German Christmas Stollen with almonds and cranberries. Tastes ten times better than store-bought stollen. Oh, and it can be veganized really easily by replacing the soft butter for margarine and the milk for any plant-based milk such as soy milk :) 

Another piece of my childhood is this super cute, tiny "Gingerbread House", also by Frau Tschi Tschi, that is made of nothing more than butter biscuits, chocolate, powdered sugar and some sweets. I'd almost forgotten about those!! Lol.

Well. Here are some more inspiring Christmas projects for the holiday season!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers (vegan)

reading time: 2 min

patties, vegan, sweet potato, african, lunch, black bean, burger

Another burger recipe. What can i say, this is my crack.

When I was in South Africa, we would eat sweet potatoes, beans and papayas pretty much all day every day, and I LOVE the taste of sweet potatoes. And black beans. And peanuts. And fresh ginger!! This goes sooo well with one another. Along with the Falafel Chickpea Burgers these are definitely my all-time favourite burgers. They are soft, sweet, spicy and inspired by the (West) African cuisine. 

So let's quit talking and get cooking! :)

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Cozy Pumpkin Lentil Dahl (vegan)

reading time: 3 min

vegan pumpkin lentil stew, dahl, dhal, dal, rice, dinner, lunch, recipe

This dish marks the official marriage of two of my favourite foods: pumpkin and dahl. (I know, pumpkin season is almost over, but I'm squeezing the last drop out of it!)

Like I already mentioned in my basic Indian dhal recipe, dahl (or dhal, dal or daal) is my personal comfort food. It's a kind of South Asian lentil stew that is often served with rice - you could say, it's the Asian equivalent to Mexican chili: just toss some legumes and veggies into a pot, mix in the spices and let it simmer until it becomes a yummy stew-y mass

In this case, I used pumpkin to create some cozy, wintry comfort food. However, feel free to replace this with sweet potato or any other vegetable you like! Or: sub 1 cup of coconut milk for an extra creamy and delicious dish!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Friday Favorites - Week 348

Hello everybody,

another week, another cute Christmas-y linky party! I know, it has just been Thanksgiving, but I can't wait to start thinking about Christmas and all that comes with it (Christmas menu, decorations, ice skating, movie nights...) This weekend we will "celebrate" the first Advent (with a lit Advent wreath and a Lord of the Rings movie night with my boyfriend), so I will decorate our flat for Christmas this weekend :)

Here are some great DIY décor and recipe ideas that you can make this holiday season!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Crunchy Chocolate Granola

reading time: 1 min

homemade granola, recipe, dairy-free, breakfast, snack, chocolate, vegan

I love making my own granola and muesli and oatmeal, and I am always trying new recipes and flavour combinations. It's all so easy to make yourself and not only does it save you money, but homemade granola often tastes much better than the store-bought ones and when you make it yourself you know exactly what is in it.  

This chocolate granola is a little more on the indulgent side, given it contains real chocolate (shocker!), as well as maple syrup and nuts, but due to the lack of any additional refined sugar it is still healthier than conventional chocolate granola, not to mention super delicious, nutty and crunchy. Oh, and it clusters!! :)

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Wintry Orange Rice Pudding (vegan)

reading time: 1 min

breakfast, dessert, vegan, gluten-free, recipe, non-dairy

To me, rice pudding is the ultimate comfort food - especially in winter, and especially with some melting chocolate on top, nom nom.

This childhood classic can easily be turned vegan. The only slight negative to such recipes is that dairy-free rice pudding (unless you use coconut milk) will have a light beige/brownish colour to it as you can see in the pictures, but as long as it tastes amazing, that should be an issue, right? :)

Friday, November 18, 2016

Weekly Meal Plan CW 46

click to enlarge

Hi guys,

as promised, here is the meal plan of what's on the menu for me and my boyfriend this week. That way it's easier to get some variety into our menu, manage our grocery shopping (and avoid unhealthy impulse buys), control our spending, and also get a feel for what we're actually eating each day

Friday Favorites - Week 347

Hello friends,

this week we have a much more pleasant topic than last week: giveaways! And of course: loads of Christmas-y things to look at and inspire you! :) I love Christmas time! Since I "missed" it last time due to my vacation in South Africa, I'm double excited for this year's Christmas season! Tacky, cute, glittering, sweet smelling? Bring it on!

Which is why I chose a DIY Christmas ornament tutorial for this week's favourites that basically requires nothing than your fingerprints!

Let's jump right to the party! :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

DIY Peanut Butter (only 2 ingredients!)

reading time: 2 min

homemade peanut butter, recipe, snack, vegan, gluten-free

Conventional store-bought peanut butter, whether smooth or chunky, is loaded with additional fat, sugar and salt with almost 10g of sugar per 100g serving!! This is absolutely unnecessary.

Luckily, peanut butter is super easy to make at home. Homemade peanut butter will be a little more gritty than Skippy peanut butter, but it will be as smooth (or chunky) and as spreadable as you need it to be. Plus, it only requires 2 ingredients!

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Sweet Pumpkin Oatmeal (vegan)

reading time: 2 min

oatmeal, porridge, fall, autumn, winter, pumpkin, breakfast

I love oatmeal, especially during the cold seasons. It's just so cosy and satisfying! During winter, I usually have it for breakfast every single day, and to prevent me from getting tired of it, I try to mix up the condiments and flavours as often as possible. So far I've done green oatmeal, pink oatmeal, dark chocolate oatmeal and loads of other variations that you can find in my recipe index - but I've never made orange oatmeal before! So here goes: Pumpkin Oatmeal! It's

& super scrumptious

Friday, November 11, 2016

Friday Favorites - Week 346

Hey guys,

I'm not in such a good mood right now, to be honest. Until recently, I thought Brexit was the stupidest, most self-destructive decision a country could make. I was wrong. 

Yes, I know, I'm living all the way over in Europe judging the choice that the majority of the Americans have made, and that might seem somewhat patronisingI also know that Hillary Clinton isn't an angel by any means and that my own chancellor, Angela Merkel, isn't perfect either. But honestly: voting a racist, sexist, narcissistic and absolutely unreliably man such as Trump as president of the United States? You've got to be kidding me.

I'm aware that many people in the United States have voted against this unbelievable pretentious and narrow-minded man, especially the younger, more educated and open-minded people (that sounds harsh but look at the stats - and also, look at this and this video), but it makes me sad, very, very sad indeed, that so many more or less intelligent individuals would rather vote for a man with all mouth and no trousers (even worse: all FOUL mouth, no backbone and definitely no respect for anyone else) than for a woman with clear ambitions to lead the United States of America (just watch her Concession Speech - so much dignity and ethical values). Well. I can only hope that the senate will keep Trump on a short leash for the next 4 years... I'm honestly terrified of a possible WW3 that will blow up our planet.

Anyway. Enough politics. I hope I didn't offend anyone or ruin your mood. Let's move on to something more enjoyable, like this lovely linky party.