I’m forever getting lost in Scandinavian blogs like Home By Linn that is authored by a 27-year-old blogger and mom based in Rogaland, Norway. I could look at them all day! Their light, bright rooms and how amazingly pulled together spaces always look – it’s nothing short of inspirational. I often wonder how people manage in spaces so well-edited and perfectly clean, but knowing some of my friends who do live this way, it is possible if you are very tidy and constantly minding yourself. I have a friend in Denmark with toddlers who lives in an all-white home and yes, she has a live-in housekeeper but still – her home is spotless without a fingerprint in sight. I have a housekeeper who visits once every two weeks and still, it’s hard to manage keeping things so clean and there is only two of us (with one on the way!). So before my baby arrives, I’ve been thinking more and more about uncluttering, throwing a big sale at my home and streamlining things.
I’ve also been thinking about investing in some nice new pieces of furniture too and some cozy rugs for Fall/Winter since I know we’ll want to spend a lot of time at home with our new baby when the little one arrives in January. My mother is planning to come spend a few months with us this winter too so I think the nursery will be her room and the baby will just sleep in our room so she doesn’t have to stay in a hotel. But this means also preparing the room for baby and grandma. So there is much to be done and I’m nearly halfway through my pregnancy so I need to get to work on this sooner than later. Who knows how I’ll feel later this year! I’ve been looking at lots of gorgeous homes lately online so I can pinpoint exactly how I envision things around my own home. As soon as get everything pulled together, I’ll share some photos on decor8.
Until then, we’ll all have to find inspiration through wonderful blogs like Home By Linn. Her style is so simple and pretty so do visit her blog, it’s amazing. Don’t miss her other blog, Life By Linn, either.
(images: home by linn)
I discovered the most delightful Eastern European “fusion style” food blog recently called Kwestia Smaku, which roughly translates to “Matter of Taste” in Polish. The food on this blog will make your mouth water! I just lost 20 lbs from pregnancy illness and can barely eat a thing, so all I think about lately is when I can eat again and all of the healthy, wonderful food that I will cook for me and my growing baby. For now, I can only look and not touch. But for the rest of you, feast your eyes and try out some of this blogger’s delicious recipes. Such a gorgeous collection of foods both savory and sweet.
Behind this blog sits a talented team. First there is Joanna, a lady who simply LOVES to cook and who attributes her passion to her mother who taught her how and gave her the cooking bug at an early age. She developes the recipes and the overall concept. As a young girl, Joanna was involved in preparing family meals and has now become so much more as she and her partner produce all of her own recipes, photos and content for her stunning blog. About her focus on Eastern European food she says, “I live in Poland and while my heritage is Polish I do like to experiment with the tradition a lot. Being a fan of the modern Polish fusion cuisine, I try to take our traditional recipes to the next level. I believe that culinary art should constantly evolve. While we mustn’t forget about our culinary roots, we should also adopt new techniques.” Well said! Then there is Tomasz, the other half of her team, who does the photography and assists in video production. What a great team they make!
By the way, if you open this blog in Google Chrome, it will give you the option to translate it into your language. And a bonus is that if you go to this page and click on the recipes that interest you, they also come with a gorgeous video!
(images: Kwestia Smaku)
Hello everyone! There is this blog I’ve been reading lately in Germany called Nicest Things and the blogger, Vera, takes the prettiest photos of things she cooks or items she uses to decorate with around her home. It’s so nice to peek into her life and see what she’s cooked up next or what she is interested in using in her home currently to spruce it up. She loves to decorate, a lady after my own heart! I know most of you don’t read German, but you can always translate the blog using Google Translate or simply pin and drool over her pretty photos.
I love all of the color palettes that she plays with – she’s definitely not stuck in a color rut which I think is the most inspiring thing about her blog since so many of us have a particular palette that begins to almost define us – but Vera just explores and explores and the results are so interesting. I also like her various projects and where she shoots, from a picnic at a lake to a country field to making some homemade peach tea ice cream pops in her cute little kitchen, these types of creative bloggers – the super personal ones that provides peeks into the blogger’s life, are so special to me. I find myself going back to them time and time again. It’s nice to feel a connection with strangers and to feel like you could instantly like them if you’d ever met in person.
Blogging is so beautiful like that, isn’t it? Through a person’s aesthetic and writing alone, you can feel something that reaches the heart. Vera has created a special blog and I think it’s just lovely.
(images: vera/nicest things)
I’ve been thinking more and more about healthy living and thought I’d mention it as part of my ongoing series of Blog Tip posts on decor8. What does healthy living have to do with blogging? Everything! Becoming a blogger definitely made me more sedentary than ever before and with sites like Pinterest showing tons of cupcakes, brownies and carb and sugar-loaded foods everyday, I have to say the eye candy hasn’t just been on my screen – I’ve felt compelled to indulge more than I should and it’s just not the lifestyle I want to live anymore. And it has nothing to do with being thin – I know lots of thin people who aren’t healthy and who look 10 years older than they are because of poor nutrition. It’s not about what the scale says, it’s all in your complexion, your level of fitness (can you run up the stairs without heaving?), it is in your eyes (are your eyes glassy and tired or bright and radiant?), etc. One of my new year’s resolutions for 2013 was to become more healthy and active but I got off on a bad start. Then I decided to change that. So I did.
One downside to blogging and book authorship is that you do a lot of it sitting down and this can definitely impact overall health, back health and even emotional health if you are not balanced. People who are active tend to battle less with negative feelings, too. I personally just want to glow. I want to radiant health and energy. I want to feel great as often as a I can. So I recently hired a nutritionist and life coach who is working with me to change my lifestyle around and who is coaching me with my career plans, too. For instance, after writing this post, I’ll go do something that requires standing – I’ll make a healthy juice smoothie with protein powder, drink it (not sitting, standing), and go use some hand weights for 15 minutes (also standing), then stretch a little, and finally return to my desk to work on some emails.
For my own resolve to live healthier, I’ve started walking regularly again (not strolling, covering 12 miles a weekend- really walking) and have plans to get into running eventually and I want to start spinning classes. I don’t need to be perfect but I want to be my personal best, whatever that “best” will ultimately be, I’ll have to decide that. Each of us has a personal best – the size we looked and felt the best at, the weight we felt the best at, the number of miles we could run comfortably, the amount of time we can swim laps before exhaustion, etc. No one can tell you what your best is and no one can tell me. And no one can do this for us – it has to be something motivated by the individual. We have to want to feel better and really live life instead of just existing, moving from project to project like a hamster in a wheel, and making money but not making a life.
For me personally, due to food allergies and sensitivities, I’ve been making lots of changes to my diet which includes adding only healthy food choices, salads, smoothies, loads of veggies, lean protein… I replaced milk and soy milk with almond milk, replaced my 2 daily coffees with 1-2 coffees per week and am avoiding fatty snacks, sugary foods and “comfort” food. I also only eat out once weekly – we started this months ago and it’s been great for our budget but also our health (my husband and I). In the summer, I’ll eat out more because we tend to do a lot with our friends and we have tons of festivals here in Germany in the summer, but that’s not a problem because their are always salads and grilled meats and other things to choose from without going for the fried or fatty stuff. I’ve allowed myself one indulgence a week (within reason of course), but ice cream or something like that, just to keep it real because sometimes your out with friends and you really want the mojito right? Or you’re at your parents home and you want to enjoy the nice home cooked meal. I’m trying to approach this with a view to HEALTH and HAPPINESS. I’m already seeing results and the great part is, I’m not stressing out over any of it. It’s funny how your body can change from bad habits to good in such a short period of time. We can easily get out of ruts – it’s the beauty of being human and having mind body control.
I hope that bloggers everywhere will start to think more about healthy living. I already feel so much better and it’s not even been a month yet since I embraced being more conscious of my health. I hope together we can raise awareness when it comes to healthy living for writers, bloggers, graphic designers and others who primarily use their computers for work. We do so much good in the world through our work, but we need to do good for ourselves too. I have some friends who work morning, noon and night and can barely chase their kids on the playground without getting irritated and tired because they’re just not active anymore. I know the feeling – it’s so easy to fall into your desk chair and grow roots and live through the pages of the internet and Pinterest without consciously thinking about LIFE, as in YOUR life.
How would YOU and YOUR life look on a Pinterest page? Would it inspire you? For me, just eating a bit healthier and taking frequent standing/walking breaks, and incorporating mini workouts into my work day (if you are writing a book like I currently am it’s so important), try to stand up and stretch every 15 minutes or get on the floor and do some crunches or a few yoga moves and then go back to writing. It’s all really good and every little bit adds up.
We don’t really know what the “after” will be for those of us always working online because most of us haven’t been doing it for long enough to really see how it has impacted our health. But for me, I’ve been blogging for over 7 years and definitely can see that it really does affect your vision, your emotional health and your back health – not to mention numbers on the scale, if you aren’t active physically throughout the day. Thankfully, I have no major health issues or nothing prompting my lifestyle change – just the will to feel great and vibrant and of course, to have a better quality of life. We only live once, right?
What are your thoughts on healthy living? How do you maintain good health if you are doing a job that requires a lot of sitting? Any eating tips, exercise tips, etc. are welcome below!
(images: holly becker)