Weekly Wishes #10

weekly wishes

Now that I’m back a school, working part-time, trying to exercise and wanting to keep up with blogging, life is getting pretty overwhelming. When I feel that way, the best thing I can do is sit back and make a list. I list my priorities, my goals, my tasks and whatever else suits my fancy. I’ve even been known to list out my weekend activities (yes my friend, it’s sad but true).

1. Finish preparing guest posts 

I’m so excited to be guest posting on three of my favourite blogs over the next couple months. I only hope to get all the post ready and done by this week so that my bloggy friends don’t hate me.

2. Learn how to sew

Given the amount of sewing projects I’ve posted on this site, this might seem like an odd goal, but keep in mind, I had never actually used a sewing machine by myself until last weekend. What?? That’s right, for the most part I just supervise Ian as he sews. That’s good delegation, right? My new machines has arrived and it’s time to put this bad boy to work. Can’t wait to try our some of these tutorials from Merrick’s Art (thanks Sister for the suggestion).

3. Pre-make delicious dinners. 

I have night courses and last week I didn’t come prepared. Instead, I sipped a smoothie well my classmates enjoyed their delicious looking dinners. No more! Time to prep some rice bowls, curries and the works. Any good ideas? I’m keen to use the slow cooker, but let’s be honest, I don’t know how to use the slow cooker, so that presents a problem….

What do you have planned for this week? 

xx

 The Nectar Collective

Ursula

Etsy; Lately

Etsy Lately

The concept behind Etsy is brilliant. For those of you who don’t know what it is, I have to ask, have you been living under a rock?? I kid. But seriously, Etsy is hip, trendy and oh so popular.

Basically, it’s an online site where anyone and everyone can sell their unique crafts. As a shopper, you can find everything from boutique pieces to scarves by your Grandma.

I use Etsy to look for Christmas and birthday presents. More recently, I’ve been perusing the site for some unique wedding jewelry pieces. Whatever it is I’m looking to buy, I love that each piece is unique and in support of small businesses.

Here are some of my current favourites:

1. Clutch by Blackbird and the Owl. This bag is so cute and has removable pieces. EEK!

2. If I had a business I’d be seriously tempted to order one of these stamps from Pretty Peas. I love the look of the watercolours.

3. Paris Print by Laura Amis. I actually have this print hanging in my bathroom and it’s as beautiful as you’d image. We also have one of Amsterdam which reminds me of when I went to school in the Netherlands.

4. Layered and Long necklaces. I’m thinking these might be a cute idea for my bridesmaids gifts.

5. Hand painted plates and dishes by M Bart Studios. These make me want to eat beautiful meals.

6. Agora wool hat by Gluckfactory.I wonder if this is easy to make? Either way, I’m a big fan of headscarves in the winter because they keep your ears warm without messing up your hair. No one likes hat hair. No one.

Have you ever bought something off Etsy? 

xx

Ursula

My Chunky Funky Fishtail Watch

watch DIY

(source)

First off, thank you for all your interesting and thoughtful comments on yesterday’s post.. You’re such an interesting group of people and I love how blogging allows everyone to share their ideas and opinions in a friendly space.

Today I thought I’d keep it light and talk about crafts! If you’re like me, you probably love the look of gold watches. They’re chunky and oh so funky.

When I saw this DIY on A Pair & A Spare I knew I wanted to make it myself. I started by ordering 1 meter of fishtail chain link online and then I waited. And waited. And waited. Apparently it takes a year to ship anything to northern BC. Lucky for me, I was able to use this time spent searching for the perfect gold watch. It’s not everyday you stumble across one and it took some serious bargain hunting before I found the one I wanted at a price I could afford.

After three weeks, the chain finally arrived and I did several happy dances before I started crafting.

It didn’t take long to make and the entire project cost me less than $25.00! What a win. Check out Geneva’s other amazing and super simple DIY projects on her website.

I can’t wait to make this, this, this and this.

Do you wear a watch? What do you think about the chunky gold ones?? 

xx

Ursula

Do Women Need Marriage in today’s day and age?

marriage picture

A couple weeks ago, I was listening to CBC’s Q with Jian Ghomeshi. For those of you who aren’t Canadian, this is a well known radio talk show that explores ideas, entertainment and politics in mainstream society. This particular episode interviewed photographer and artist Suzanne Heintz who has created a series of pictures with a “fake family”.

By “fake family”, I mean Suzanne takes pictures with a mannequin husband and daughter as a way of commenting on society’s image of the perfect family.

After years of taking pictures with her “husband” and “daughter”, Suzanne decided to up the ante by throwing a fake wedding. When asked why, she raised some interesting questions about women and the societal pressure around marriage.

This got me thinking, as women, is marriage something we are raised to believe is a requirement for a committed relationship? It is a social expectation? Why is it so important to us?

The short answer: I don’t really know.

I consider myself progressive and I’m a firm believer in gender equality and pushing against social expectations. I believe women should be able to choose to have children, careers and be intrinsically involved in politics. I also want to get married and sometimes, I don’t understand where my attachment to matrimony comes from.

Is it the actual wedding day? No not really. I was just as happy to elope but I’d be lying if I said that now that we’ve begun wedding planning, I’m not ridiculously excited about the dress, the decorations, the hair and getting up in front of our friends and family.

Is it the public declaration of love? No. I know Ian loves me and I love him. In fact, I know the world knows it too because we are a team and it’s no secret that he’s my favourite person.

Is it the fact that when times get tough, it’s harder to walk away from a marriage? Maybe. Although truth be told, with our changing laws and practices, it is just as difficult to walk away from a common law relationship.

I haven’t figured out why being married is so important to me. I suspect it’s because I’m attune to social pressures and like many people, being married is something I’ve been raised to believe I need and want. I have spent a lifetime learning that when a man loves me enough, he’ll propose. I know it’s hogwash. When a man loves you enough he’ll do the dishes. He’ll stick around when you’re being emotional and mean. He’ll be your best friend and your biggest supporter.

At the end of the day, it’s easy for me to question whether or not marriage is an important institution because I know I’m getting married. It’s kind of like getting dieting advice from the skinny kid (thanks but no thanks). So I will be the first to admit that yes, I do want to get married. It’s still a deal breaker for me but I’m interested in questioning where that desire stems from.

What do you think? Why is marriage so important to women in modern society? Is it important to you? 

xx

Ursula

Phyllo Pizza with Fresh Basil and Mozzarella

pizza pictures to use

I think this blog gives people the wrong impression. Much as I would like to pretend otherwise, I’m really not that good of a cook.

Sure, I can cook the basics and I know how to make vegetarian meals that a hearty but they aren’t overly creative. My problem is that nine times out of ten I don’t follow a recipe and more often than not my spontaneous recipes fall flat. That being said, every once in a while, my non-recipe concoctions work in my favour and the end product is surprisingly delicious.

That’s what happened this Sunday when I decided to make a pizza using phyllo pastry. Keep in mind that I’ve only baked with phyllo pastry once before and that was under the careful supervision of my mom.

Well folks, the chicken has left the coop. I’m now a self proclaimed phyllo expert and proud of it.

What I used:

  • phyllo pastry
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil margarine (I know it seems like a lot of but trust me on this one)
  • 2 gloves of fresly chopped garlic
  • a handful of fresh basil
  • 4 medium sized sweet cherry tomatoes
  • fresh mozzarella

phyllo pizza pic 2

What I did:

I started by melting the margarine in the microwave. Next I carefully brushed the bottom of a baking sheet with margarine and proceeded to layer each sheet of phyllo pastry one on top of the other, brushing them with margarine as I went. I folded the corners down to start building an edge on the “crust”.

I sprinkled chopped garlic, fresh basil, cherry tomatoes and large slices of fresh mozzarella on the phyllo pastry and then placed it in the oven at 350 C for 25 minutes. (side tip: phyllo pastry can easily burn, so be sure to check in on your pizza frequently).

This recipe made more than enough pizza for two people and it was absolutely delicious. The crust was light, flakey and buttery and the garlic was wonderfully pungent.

ian and a pizza

Have you ever baked with phyllo pastry before? Are you a recipe follower or a spontaneous concoction maker like me? 

xx

A Harvest of Blessing
Ursula