Wednesday 30 November 2016

I am not vegetarian. But I like vegetables.

As a German I think I grew up thinking that meat dishes should be part of my diet several times a week, if not daily. I never once questioned my conviction until I was a mother of 2 little girls and we were on our parental time challenge

We started rethinking our cooking entirely because we wanted to save money but at the same time provide healthy food for our children (and ourselves...). We looked into lots of cookbooks and recipes, read about nutrition and obviously checked all that against our budget. So what happened was, that we ate more and more vegetarian dishes, because it was cheaper. My natural minimalist sort of told me all of the time that he had told me all of the time that it was much better to go more vegetarian for various other reasons anyway (having been vegetarian and even co-vegan for some time of his life before he was enticed to move to meat-loving Germany). 
As the cooking is mostly done by him, we took a big turn and our routine since our parental time is, that we have meat or fish once a week (I am talking about the "grown up" diet here) and the rest of the week vegetarian dishes. And I LOVE it.  

We have italian inspired dishes, "veggie  bolognese" (tomato+red lentil sauce, in fact one of our all time favourites) and more mediterranean cuisine, oriental cuisine and use recipes for indian curries or dishes from other asian countries. In fact I think our meal plan has become a lot more exciting since we started to concentrate a bit more on veggies recipes. 

So, what are the advantages? I obviously like to eat meat and fish and have no intention of going full-time vegetarian. But eating more vegetable also has an influence that can stretch beyond just eating differently. 

1. If you eat less meat, you can choose the meat you DO eat more carefully - e.g. from  local butchers/farmers and not from the supermarket discounter with meat from industrial livestock farming (I am not discussing this here, but obviously if less people buy meat from mass production farms there will be less of that). Also by reducing the amount of meat generally means, that you reduce your personal carbon footprint. 

2.  You can get vegetable/fruit from the region when it is in season and support your local producers. Also good for carbon footprint. Or if you have a garden, you can grow your own vegetable! And if it is only a tiny little bit. :)

3. You will get to know a LOT of new recipes if you start making your own veggie dishes from scratch and that means you might cut down on processed food, which is really not healthy. We know that. ;)

4. You will probably eat more vitamins. :) 

5. It is cheaper. At least in my experience.

6. It is much nice to cut a piece of pumpkin than to dice a chicken fillet (again, that is my personal opinion...)

Last but not least, I've found a picture of the food pyramid for you, that I think is good. I know, it's in German, but I am sure everybody can read pictures. :) What I also really like about is that it includes drinks and sports(!).

If you think just water or tea is a bit boring, try some of these alternatives to water:

(If you live in a country where water that comes from the tab has drinking quality, then you can also jsut drink tab water or get a little fizzy water maker, to get bubbles, instead of buying bottled water!)

You can go to your local bookshop and enquire about books on veggie dishes that might suit you. 
As a family of 4 we don't really have the time to spend hours and hours in the kitchen. But others do and love it. Try it out!

I don't really like pictures of mass food production, but these are remarkable, esthetic in a weird way and give food for thought. A lot.

Wednesday 23 November 2016

Have you been Outdoors today?

Today, I just would like to share this post about spending time outdoors.
I have absolutely nothing to add. :)


Wednesday 16 November 2016

Saving electricity for freedom!

Saving money makes you free.

By saving money you free yourself from debts, from pressures, from owing sombody something.

And also you care for the environment and resources and make this planet a better place to live.

One biggy is electricity.

To save energy you can try and do the following things (and of course search the internet for more information)

  • Replace regular light bulbs with LED or special energy saving light bulbs, use the right light bulbs for the right purpose (do they have to stay on long or just quickly be turned on and off?)
  • Only switch on the  light when and where you need it (e.g. why have the bathroom light on when you are in the garden?)
  • Check which electrical appliances really have to be switched on/on standby the entire day and maybe attach some to a master/slave switch
  • invest into energy saving electrical appliances (washing machine, dishwasher,...) and assess, whether you really need all of those electrical appliances. 

 Make a difference! Be free!

Wednesday 9 November 2016

Moving house!

Today we are moving house! Yes! So instead of a  big long blogpost I am giving you a simple link. :) It's a small article on "becoming minimalist" and it is just a small piece of inspiration. :)

So long!

Monday 7 November 2016

Kira the kangaroo - Lalylala patterns

She's been carrying around the baby all night... that's why she looks tired!

 Just in time I've finished the Kira Kangaroo with baby Crochet Pattern by lalylala - a dear friend of mine had her first baby and I made a few bodies, shirts and a patchwork blanket for the little one (totally got carried away...! and of course didn't take a single picture of the things...), and then I saw the Kira pattern and though i MUST make this for her. It's so irresistably cute! :)

But you just have to cuddle them all of the time, because they are SO cute, no matter how tired you are! ;)
The pattern is really well described, good pictures, it was easy to follow the instructions. I am a real beginner with crocheting and the technique of making the "belly bag" for the baby and the ears in this bubbly pattern was really difficult... it was all about just the right tension of the thread - but after about 5 ears that didn't quite look right it suddenly worked... (the instructions are fine, it was me...)

slight counting issues on the tail... nothing to worry about though, who needs balance when they've got a baby?!

No trace of ear issues any more...

It was so fun to make this pattern and I am really pleased with the outcome. It's  a clear recommendation! (I think her pattern might me addictive additive!)

Check out her patterns on her Hompage :

Total: 20 Euros
Pattern about 5-6Euros
Wool: had to get all of the wool apart from the scarf material. About 14 Euros all in all. But I've got plenty left... Maybe I could make another Kira? Or anoher Bina? 

Things learnt: Sort of lacy, bubbly pattern. Counting. Reading a crochet chart.

Wednesday 2 November 2016

If - Rudyard Kipling

Today I would like to share with you a poem by Rudyard Kipling. The page below also has it as an audible version, very well read and also some information on Kiplings interesting biography.