The month of February started for me with noticing that my passport was soon going to expire and I quickly went to the Citizens Registration Office to apply for a new one.
Although I´ve been in this building quite often before, I´ve never noticed this little window that has been integrated in one of the walls for no apparent reason except that it looks beautiful. And I think I only noticed it this time, because I was too early for my appointment. 😉
The glowing bulb fixed to the wall behind the window could easily be mistaken for the moon, don´t you think? The walls are actually painted in a very dull beige, but with a little bit of editing magic, the whole thing looks infinitely better. 🙂
A few days later I came across another unusual sight – a tree in full foliage in the middle of winter!
A closer look revealed that it wasn´t at all leaves I was seeing but bunches of mistletoe! I´m used to seeing one or two of these high up in a tree, but never before did I see so many of them on just one tree. My inner Getafix felt tempted to draw my little sickle and cut them down to brew my own magic potion. 😉
But instead of brewing I did some baking! Here´s a picture of my very thin, buttery and crispy Sweet Potato Pie:
I really love these kind of pies, be it sweet potato or pumpkin, because you can eat them whether you feel like eating something sweet or savory.
Painting of the Month
Though I have to be careful how often I indulge in these sweet and buttery delicacies or I will soon look like one of these fellows, that I painted this month after rereading some of my favorite Beatrix Potter books…
On one of my after-dinner walks that hopefully will prevent me from turning into a little piggy ;), I was enchanted by the beautiful icing with which the frost has decorated plants and bushes.
Making Body Butter
I´ve also noticed something else this winter – getting older seems to have a bad effect on my skin!! 😉 Never before did I have so much trouble with winter-tormented skin, especially my shins are killing me and I have scratched myself so badly one night that I woke up with blood under my fingernails in the morning, and a brand new scar on my left shin!
No matter how often I applied my body lotion, there was no improvement at all. So I had a look around (i.e. did some googling), and found that I was not the only one feeling awfully let down by my body lotion.
I tried applying generous amounts of coconut oil which did feel better at first, but didn’t really have the desired effect.
More googling followed and I found out that fats and oils need to be combined with each other in order to develop their healing effects.
For making my own body butter I use equal measures of four different kinds of butters and oils:
For example: 1/2 cup cocoa butter
1/2 cup shea butter
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup olive oil
(Make sure to use only organic and unrefined oils and butters, because they have the best effect!)
Put it all in a glas bowl and let them melt on low heat in a bain-marie. Stir gently until all the fats are molten – this can take a while, especially cocoa butter needs a lot of time.
As soon as everything is molten, you can take away the bowl, pour the mixture in another bowl at room temperature and then put this for about 30 min in the freezer, or until the liquid has the consistency of mashed potatoes (it´s important that your finger can still leave a mark on it, so keep checking).
Then you need to whip it for a couple of minutes with a kitchen machine until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy.
Pour into a mason jar – et voilà! – You have made your very own body butter! Free of any conservatives, it will keep fresh at least a month in a dry, dark and cool place.
This body butter is absolutely perfect for dry skin! It soothes and nourishes at the same time, and can even help with eczema. Bye-bye body lotion! 😀
Knitting against the cold
And to protect my skin further from the cold, I regularly knit socks and the like. For the first time I´m using a super fine wool though for which I use very slim needles (2 mm).
Of course, with this kind of wool it takes ages to get it all done, but winter isn´t gone yet. On the contrary, temperatures are going to drop this week to -13 degrees Celsius!
If you would like to join me and the others in this challenge, here are the guidelines:
The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):
- Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
- Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
- Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them
The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):
- Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
- Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
- Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.
Hope you had a lovely February and wish you all a beautiful March!