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Donnerstag, 28. Januar 2016

January: A summary

Hey guys!

Oh boy, the first month of the year is already over! As I want this blog also to function as a diary, I'm planning to write little summaries at the end of the month. This is also part of my plan to blog on a more regular basis and generally to write more often.

January has started with a big bang and no, I don't mean fireworks on New Years Eve but rather with the disappointing news that we didn't get the dream house that we already counted on. It was really hard to get such negative news when we really thought, that we would get the house, as we were promised. I still get angry when I think about it but I'm trying my best to leave this thing behind and look forward.
We're appartment hunting right now and haven't really found the right place for us. It shouldn't really bother me, because we don't NEED to move, but we WANT to move. Our appartment is small, we don't have a balcony or a bathtub, both things, that are really important to us. And there's no place for a baby. Not that I'm pregnant, but we'll have to think about the future. So we'll how long it will take us to find the perfect (and affordable) place for us.

My man and I took a little time out in the thermae where we got married and enjoyed the time, that we had for us, a lot!

I managed to do some crochet in January. I started a baby blanket which will only need a few more granny squares before I can start the joining and I nearly finished my little doll for my lovely niece.
I shared picture of little Josefine (as you know I've been looking for a name and my two nephews decided on the name for their little sister as she still has to learn to talk) on facebook and a friend of mine asked me, if I could make a lalylala doll for her as her sister is pregnant and she's still looking for a gift. Of course I can, I'm very delighted to have another order for my little prospering crochet business!

Since I went running on a regular basis back in September, I try to make sport as often as possible! I have an office job where I sit everyday and it relaxes me to go out for a run after work. As it has been really cold these past few weeks, I didn't run but I enjoyed doing pilates workouts at home. I manage at least 3 workouts a week and I already feel myself getting stronger. Cassey Ho is an amazing Pilates instructor and she keeps you motivated and I enjoy getting sweaty and out of breath with her!

My man gifted me a fitbit activity tracker and I try to manage 10.000 steps at least three times a week. So far it really motivates me. Since I own that little device I haven't used any escalators or elevators but I always used the stairs. And let me just tell you that my office is on the third floor of an old building and that I could use 8 escalators on my way to work at the train station and on the underground. Massive improvement!

One of my new year resolutions was to read more classics. I tried, I really did. I started Ulysses, but didn't understand a word of the original version in English, and nobody I know has the german translation. Then I started with the Ilias from Homer. This one was a german translation as I don't speak and understand Greek, but I didn't understand a word either. All those names, all those gods and half-gods and sons and peoplese and cities and places...I pushed myself halfway through and then decided to quit. To me, reading is about enjoying a good story, about escaping the reality and fleeing into the fictional word, and reading for me is FUN! So I started the new John Irving novel instead.
Apart from that I read this month:
Jojo Moyes - Ein ganzes halbes Jahr (Me before you)
My sister in law borrowed me her kindle with that book because I wanted to know what the fuzz was all about. Nice story, quick read, but it didn't bring me to tears. I have to say that I have never read a book that made me cry, apparently I'm not that emotional..

Jo Nesbo - Die Fährte (Nemesis)
Jo Nesbo. A classic. I adore the Harry Hole thriller and I'm still collecting all ten of them.

So how was your January! Did you have bad news as well? What happy moments did you enjoy? I'd love to hear! 

time out

Last year in April (oh my, time goes by so fast...) my man and I got married in a beautiful thermae near our home town, the St. Martins Therme & Lodge.

For the wedding, we got gifted a gift coupon for a relax! one day holiday in the upper deck area of the thermae. I took a day off work on Monday and we cashed in our coupon.

We've been to the upper deck area before and we love it there! It's a little exclusive area, with comfortable beds, snacks and beverages and an amazing view. Unfortunately, the weather was rather bad on Monday, but we still enjoyed our stay there.

It was wonderful to relax for a day, not to think about work, to spend time with my lovely husband and to eat and drink and just float in the warm water. We went to the sauna, we had a hot stone massage, I had time to read and of course there was a lot of cuddling. The perfect day.

We have a special connection with the thermae and the lodge. Not only did we got married there, but the thermae also plays a vital role in the beginning of our relationship, a little more than 4 years ago. So we always enjoy coming back there to relive memories and to be grateful, that we met each other and fell in love. And now enough talking, here are some pics.

Sonntag, 24. Januar 2016

Looking for a name

Hey guys, 

During the Christmas holidays, we visited my sister in law and her amazing family in Salzburg. She is married and has three children, two boys, aged 7 and 8 and a little baby girl, who's just a little over seven months right now. 

One evening, we sat together after the kids went to bed and we talked about my crochet work. As I told you before, I'd like to make a little extra money with my crochet work. So I showed my sil the lalylala dolls that I made so far. She was thrilled by the looks of it and asked me, if I would make one for my little niece. 
When we talked about whether I should crochet the cute kangaroo or the even cuter little lamb, her husband interfered. He said, that all the dolls and puppets are way too cute and wasn't there something more masculin? Like...a dragon? 

Well thank god that I bought the pattern for Dirk the Dragon a while ago but never got around to try it out. And when I asked about the colors, my sister in law immediatly said: PINK! 

I guess, finally having a little girl after living with a husband and two sons for ten years makes you really girly. 

So I bought the yarn. 

And started to crochet. 

A few days later I had all parts ready. 

And when it snowed really bad this Saturday, and we decided to stay in and have a lazy day on the couch I started to sew all the parts together. 

Whenever I make a doll for a baby, I rather stitch the eyes on, than use plastic eyes so that there is no choking hazars. And with every doll I'm getting better and better. 

I'm nearly finished now and I can't wakt to visit my sister in law again to give little Lea her little dragon. 

Probably not the kind of dragon my brohter in law had in mind, but I hope, my lovely niece will like it as much as I do and she'll play with it and treasure it for a very long time. 

Now all I need is a new name. "Dirk" isn't really fitting for my little pink baby. So I need your help. If you would have any suggestion for my nameless dragon please let me know. I'm thankul for your help! 

Dienstag, 19. Januar 2016

the glass is half full

Hello, lovely people!

This is the third time that I'm starting this post. Three different titles, three different texts. Everytime that I read it through after finishing typing it I deleted it again. So here's my third try. Let's see if this version get's published.

We got bad news last week. We didn't get the house. Long story short: We were promised we would get it, then the lady at the office said, that there has been a mistake and someone else got it.
That was the essential message in my two previous posts. But then I started whining and complaining. I told you about the tears that I cried, the fit that I got, the anger, the yelling, the cursing. And that's when I started to delete. I don't want to whine and nag and feel sorry for myself.

So I'm being optimistic and grateful. We are toying with several ideas right now and we will see which one will prove best. We're still saving up money, because we will need it, even if we don't know which solution we'll be the best in the end.

But we're also planning a holiday. We visited the Vienna holiday fair last week and we're now thinking about making a roadtrip through Scotland or Ireland in the summer, for my mans 30th birthday. He doesn't want to celebrate at home.

And I'm still working on being more optimistic and thinking positive. I'm sure, there's a reason somewhere, why we hadn't gotten that house. It wasn't meant to be. That's what I'm saying to myself.

And then I met my best friend for dinner today and we exchanged our christmas gifts and talked and talked and talked and now the world is a happy place. And the best thing was her gift for me. A special, personalised bookmark. And chocolate. You can always make me happy with chocolate.

It's the little things in life. 

Mittwoch, 13. Januar 2016

Digital Detox

Dear Readers,

do you own a smartphone? I bet most of you do. I own an iPhone for a few years now. I got my brothers used ones and bought my own nearly three years ago. And I love it. I can make pictures, I can communicate with friends all over the world, I can google things, I have an GPS all the time, I can track my running times, I can compare my crafts with other people, I can show you what I'm doing, what I'm eating, what I'm reading, I can write blog posts in the train... and I use all of these options.
But it's getting out of control! It all started a few months ago, when my man commented, that I'm glued to my phone, that I couldn't live a day without my mobile, that I'm "addicted" to it. And he was right. I was watching myself closely after he said that. Without thinking about it, I grab my phone hundreds of times a day to check Instagram, Facebook, whatsapp and other pages. And I want that to stop.

I commute by train to work everyday. And everyday I see all those people, head bent, looking at their screens. They don't seem to recognise what's going on around them. Yesterday, I sat next to two men, who spent the whole train ride (about 45 minutes) talking about their apps and games. I don't want to be like that.

I know that technology changes and with it the people using it. And that's good. It's wonderful, that we have this little supercomputer with us all the time. But I don't want to be addicted to it. I don't want to feel dependend on a phone. So I prescriped myself a digital detox.

I won't stop using my phone at all. But I want to stop grabbing it mindlessly every hour. So I gave myself strict phone-using times. Of course I will use it to call someone and write messages - that's what the phone is for! But I will restrict the times when I use it to look at facebook. Or Instagram. Or any other similar apps. And I will ban my phone from my bedroom. My phone is my alarm clock, that's why I have it, plugged in, on my nightstand. And of course, before I go to bed, I spend a few more minutes looking through things on it. Screen time, right before bed. You don't need to be a scientist to tell you, that that's not good. I sleep very badly momentarily, so I hope that this will improve my sleeping, too.

I'll keep you updated and hope, that my phone using habits will improve over time. Studies say, that it takes you 21 days to get used to something. So for the next 21 days, I will strictly restrict my phone usage. Let't see, if this will work out.

How about you? Are you glued to your phone or computer? Or is it easy for you, just to check in once or twice a day? I'd love to know!

Sonntag, 10. Januar 2016

Hello 2016

Das Hey Guys!

Long time, no blog. I've been really bad with blogging these past few weeks. And I want to change that. I've been sick with a really bad cold these past few days, which gave me a lot of time on the couch and a lot of time to think. I thought about this blog place. I've been following blogs for a few years, before I decided to start my own. I loved the idea to share my crafts and crochet makings and my love for books with people all over the world who like the same stuff as I do. I loved that I got some reactions after a few posts and that I have FOLLOWERS! It still feels amazing to write that, even if there are just a few.
So when I was lying on the couch, desperately trying to breathe through my clogged nose, I decided that I want to make a new start with this blog. I want to take it serious, to spend more time here in blogland, to visit your blogs more regularly and to comment a lot more. Because that's how you get communication started. And chatting with you lot is what it's all about!

So I start my new blogging adventure by telling you what I've been up to these past few days and what I want to do in 2016.

Shortly before Christmas, my man and I found out, that there are new houses built in the town that we currently live in. We love it here. My man grew up here. It's a lovely little town (more like a village), with a lot of lovely people, its situated at a lake and a national park, and it's just a 30 minute ride from Austrias capital Vienna, where we both work. For these type of houses, you have to pay a certain amount at the beginning, then you can rent the house for 10 years and after those ten years you are able to buy it. It's a town house (or terraced house) in a very nice location, just behind a grocery store, a little outside the city centre. We would have more than double the space that we have now, 3 bedrooms and even a small basement and a garden! We are currently waiting for the confirmation that we can have this house and if we get that, we can move in spring 2017! I know, it's still a year to wait, but that gives us time to save up some extra money and we would be living in a brand new home! So cross your fingers, that we will get this house. We should know it by the end of the week.

My next plan for the coming year is to spend more focus on my crochet works. I was able to sell some of my amigurumi animals last year. It was nice to get some money for the things that I love to do! So I'm planning to work on a little range of crochet things. Like a portfolio. Thanks to my cold (being sick kind of has a positive side) I was able to start a crochet blanket. I have a lot of Drops Baby Merino Yarn left over from when I made the baby blanket for my little niece (that girl is nearly 7 months old already!!) so I decided to start a granny square blanket. I chose the Sunburst Flower Square as I love its texture and how colorful it can be. I have nearly half the blanket finished. It's a good sitting-next-to-the-TV-watching-a-movie-crochet-work, as it doesn't involve any counting and once you mastered the pattern (it's really not difficult) you can easily concentrate on something else. I bought some new yarn (with the money I made from selling my stuff) and will start a new lalylala doll for my little niece today. It's gonna be the cutest, pink and purple dragon. Watch this space, I will post an update here soon!

one of the two Kiras that I made this year. I love the lalylala dolls!

that's why I made little Lupo immediately afterwards.

the beginning of the new baby blanket

and this is my favourite cotton yarn - I will use it to make a cute little pink dragon

I still want to record my readings here. As often before, I forbade myself to buy new books for a while. I have a ton of unread books in my bookshelf. As we live in a very small appartment, there isn't really a place to put up new shelves and there isn't a free space left in the old ones. And moving house with hundreds of books isn't a fun thing as well. So I borrowed a lot of books from friends and family and will try to finish all unread books in my shelf, before I allow myself to buy new ones. I will post my reading summaries here as well - again on a regular basis. I managed to read 57 books last year. Not bad, isn't it?

one of the best books that I read this year! And part of my bookshelves in the background.

And last but not least I made a classical new year resolution - I want to exercise more often. In the last three months of 2015 I managed to go for a run at least twice a week and discovered blogilates. I know that I won't make sport EVERY day, but I want to exercise 3 times a week at least. My man gave me a fitbit-fitness tracker for christmas. One of its features is a step counter. Apparently, you should make at least 10.000 steps per day. As I work in an office and tend to sit in front of the computer for 8 hours a day, this could be a little difficult. But I want to make it a least 3 times a week. Even going for a little walk for 30 minutes must be better than sitting at home, doing nothing.
So this is what I'll be doing when I finish typing these up. Going for a walk. Tomorrow I'll be back at the office, back at work, after more than two weeks at home. The time at home was lovely and I enjoyed spending so much time with my man (we had our 4 year anniversary, by the way!) but I'm keen to having a structured day and to go back to work again. 

So, be prepared to hear (or read) from me more often. I can't wait to see what this year will bring for all of us!

So I wish you (a little belated) HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope it will bring you joy and happiness and sunshine and laughter and hundreds and thousands of memorable moments!