The Changing Seasons – March 2019

 

It´s time again for the wonderful challenge The Changing Seasons hosted by my dear friend Su from Zimmerbitch!

But before we begin, let me just share a pic of my mum with the perm I made for her back in January and that I forgot to post in my February Changing Seasons post for those of you who were curious how it looked without the curlers. 😉

 

Mama

My mum enjoying a visit to the zoo (January 2019)

 

And now to the stuff I did this month! 🙂

 

AMIGURUMI

You might remember that rather lonesome looking amigurumi koala from my last monthly catch up?

 

DSC_1237

Very pensive amigurumi koala (February 2019)

 

Well, I made good on my promise and crocheted a little koala baby to keep it company! 😀

 

koala mum and baby

Amigurumi koala mum and baby (March 2019)

 

koalas from behind

Koala pair from behind (March 2019)

 

koalas from the side

…and from the side (March 2019)

 

And because there was still something missing…

… I crocheted a little tree for them to cling on!! 😀

 

koalas with tree

Koala mum, baby and tree (March 2019)

 

LIP CARE

 

Thanks to horrendously itchy shins that tormented me last winter – and graciously did me the honor of torturing me again this winter – , I became somewhat of an expert in making my own body butter to prevent me from scratching them literally bloody (click here if you want to learn more about how to make your own body butter).

Since the body butter works really well for me, I thought I also might give it a try to make my own lip balm.

And what can I say? I never had smoother lips in my life!! 😉

 

All you need for this very easy to make lip balm are:

2 tablespoons organic cocoa butter

2 tablespoons organic coconut oil

and

2 tablespoons organic bees wax.

Put all the ingredients 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 and bees wax need quite a lot of time.

As soon as the mixture has become liquid, quickly(!) pour it into a container of your choice – I took these tiny Chinese porcelain bowls for it but you could also use an empty lipstick container – because it will very fast become solid again.

If you like tinted lip balm, just add a morsel of your favorite lipstick to the melting mix.

 

lip balm

Handmade lip balm with only three ingredients, still in its liquefied form (March 2019)

 

The lip balm will keep at least a year if you store it in a cool and dry place.

 

lip balm solid

Handmade lip balm and bees wax drops (March 2019)

 

There’s something fishy in the state of Denmark…

 

(I know, I know, it’s actually: “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark” (Hamlet by Shakespeare), but you’ll soon see, why I chose the somewhat incorrect title. 😉 )

Ever since my mum had to change her diet last summer because of her health, I took quite an interest in healthy foods myself, even though I thankfully rather like eating what’s good for you. But as it is with many things – there’s always room for improvement.

Living in a city NOT by the sea, and being raised by parents who both loathed the stuff, my diet always showed one noticeable gap – there was never any fish to be had.

Now you might say, that with overfishing our oceans these days, it’s actually a good thing if we don’t eat any fish. Just as well, because you don’t want to ingest any heavy metals like mercury or micro plastics.

And I normally would agree wholeheartedly with that opinion.

But having done quite a bit of research in that matter, and having learned that eating fish has a lot of benefits – like omega 3 fatty acids which help prevent heart disease, or vitamin D which helps with depressions during winter –  I also came across the fact, that there are still fish you actually can eat without having (too much) of a bad conscience. And these are sardines.

Now you also might curl your lips in disgust and say that sardines aren’t really worth calling fish, what with them being so small – but that’s just where it gets interesting.

With them being so small, they’re rather low in the food chain and thus are pretty good to eat – no high amounts of either the heavy metals or the micro plastics found in inside them.

 

salad

Rocket salad with sardines (March 2019)

 

And another good thing is, there’s still plenty of them.

So instead of eating tuna – whose population is severely threatened by overfishing – you could instead buy a can of sardines next time you feel like eating fish.

It tastes just as good – maybe even better – and I’ve become used to regularly add a few filets on top of my salad.

 

salad with balsamico

Rocket salad with sardine filets and balsamic vinegar (March 2019)

 

Having just pointed out the health benefits of eating fish, I feel kind of compelled to add a few pictures of the Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies that I made last weekend, just to keep things even. 😉

 

cookie dough

Cookie dough – ready to be baked (March 2019)

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies

Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies – ready to be eaten 😉 (March 2019)

 

GLAZING EXPERIMENTS

 

Remember that yarn bowl I also made in January?

It took me quite some time to get the glaze right, I think I glazed and fired this piece about 4 times!

But finally I’m happy with the result, and it’s such a joy to use it whilst knitting socks or crocheting those little amigurumi animals. 🙂

 

yarn bowl

Glazed yarn bowl (March 2019)

 

bowl

Yarn bowl detail (March 2019)

It’s always tricky to take pictures of glazed ceramics, what with the light having a tendency to bump off it at odd angles, but I hope you get a glimpse of the lovely sea green color inside the bowl.

bowl inside

Inside of the yarn bowl (March 2019)

 

strawberry red

Strawberry red rim on top of the yarn bowl (March 2019)

 

BOOK OF THE MONTH

 

Of all the books I’ve read this month – Bones of the Lost by Kathy Reichs, Das Haupt der Welt (Head of the World) by Rebecca Gablé, Threshold by Sara Douglass and A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan – the last one stood out for me.

It’s a gripping murder mystery set in a haunted house with the winter solstice of 1917 approaching.

It is beautifully written and wonderfully creepy when there’s a storm outside – which was a pure coincidence but added very nicely to the overall eeriness.

 

book of the month

My book of the month, a lovely cup of tea and lemon blueberry cake. (March 2019)

 

 

 

And this was it!

 

If you’re interested in participating, here are the guidelines for The Changing Seasons Challenge:

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.

If you do a ping-back to Su´s original monthly post, she can update it with links to yours.

79 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons – March 2019

    • Hehehe! I know, right? Would be quite unmanageable if I had! 😉
      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting, Tina! So glad you like my little koalas! Have a wonderful Sunday! 😀

      Like

  1. So
    Much to
    Like here.
    The koalas are adorable and had no idea sardines were so untainted – I knew they packed many good oils and brain nutrients – and I don’t like the taste but need to try them on some salads and maybe add a tasty dressing –
    Your yarn bowl is cool too

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like your changing seasons posts. It’s always fun to see what you’re up to, Sarah. Cute little koalas and a beautifully glazed yarn bowl. 🙂 I use the same ingredients as your lip balm to make a face moisturizer – I’d slather it from head to toe if I could. And sardines are a favorite here in my house. They are fishy, but I like the strong flavor. Finally… great perm! Ha ha. Happy April!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Diana!
      I admit, I do use that lip balm sometimes on the rest of my face as well – it’s seems to work wonders with wrinkles. 😉 But sshh! we don’t want to make it too public or prices for bees wax are only going too get higher. 😉
      So great to hear you like sardines too, I really like them a lot and wish I had discovered them earlier! 😀 But again, better late than never. 😉
      Happy April to you too, Diana! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You are incredibly talented and diverse, Sarah. I love your mum’s long curls. My mum had long straight blonde hair. OMG, I thought the Koalas were cute until I saw the Eucalyptus tree. The purple wool looks so vibrant in the blue bowls. Wonderfully eclectic. Sardines are very good for you. I used to make a nice pate with peppered mackerel and cream cheese.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww – thank you, Kerry! 😍
      My mum’s natural hair is straight too – which she absolutely hates! 😂 I guess all of us have some complaint or other about our appearances. 😉
      I really love that purple wool and can’t wait for the socks to be finished!! 😄
      Your peppered mackerel and cream cheese pate sounds lovely! Going to try this out soon! 😊 xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Your mother’s hair looks fantastic.
    Love your cookies, Sarah. I am on a strict diet, but still can admire your picture, right?
    What a handy bowl. Great idea 🙂
    I hope you have a happy and creative week. xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Inese! My mum’s still so happy with her curls. 😄
      Thankfully pictures don’t have calories, right? 😉
      That bowl really is so handy – I don’t know why it took me so long to make one! 😂 All those yarns I had to hunt down under the sofa! 😂
      Have a wonderful and creative week too, dear friend! xxxxxxxx

      Liked by 1 person

  5. What a cute little koala friend you crocheted! They look like best friends already 😍 Next you can make an entire zoo! This past month I learned the basics of crochet and I am getting the hang of it. So exciting 😍 Sorry to hear about your lips but good to hear some homemade lip balm made it all better. Winter can be so harsh and not all of us like the cold (such as me lol).

    So interesting to hear you haven’t been eating much seafood. I have lived in the city all my life and I love seafood! Don’t mind fish at all, and really like prawns, lobster, crab and calamari. You do have a good point about mercury and iodine levels in seafood, and for that reason I watch my intake of crunchy seaweed.

    Your peanut butter chocolate cookies look so good. Not just a cook but also a baker 😍

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Mabel! And yay to learning the basics of crocheting – not long now and you will start your own zoo!! 😉 It really is kind of addictive, and it doesn’t help when friends come and visit and say they want one too!! 😀 So, there’s always a lot to crochet! 🙂

      The only seafood I had as a kid were those cardboard like squares that tasted just like what they felt like – cardboard. 😉 Oh, and scampi/prawns – really loved those, well, still do. 😉
      I also like crunchy seaweed, but you’re right about keeping that iodine level in my mind, too much can cause just as much harm as too few.

      Wish you a wonderful Sunday and a fabulous week ahead! 💕

      Like

      • I also think crocheting is attractive. Even the basics are fun to learn 😀 It sounds like your amigurumi are impressing so many people!

        Good that you got to try and like more seafood apart from those cardboard like squares…they remind me of abalone 😂

        You have a fabulous week ahead too, Sarah ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      • Just wanted to chime in on the very fun conversation – I have recently been told that iodine is way too low in most people and is another reason chronic illnesses are on the rise – and the low iodine also adds to an already stresses thyroid and paused immune system – and the trace amounts in food are a joke – and it is when supplementing with iodine that one needs to be careful – there is a great brand called “iodoral” that docs use and people can take on their own – this helped me a lot and can help women with breast health. Thyroid health and immune function- and for me personally – a bit of iodine supplementing was one of 35 things that revived me immune system – but most seaweed snacks are processed and have little iodine left

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you for adding this very interesting fact! Low iodine level is a concern in most parts of Germany too which is why almost everyone uses iodined salt for cooking. But of course if it’s too low supplements are the better choice. I didn’t know that seaweed snacks actually have only little iodine, thank you. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hi – well I shocked to learn about the perks of iodine and the way to get it in our body – but I guess folks who have had a lot of x-rays (possible radiation) can benefit greatly as well

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I love those little animals you knit Sarah. Looks like you had a wonderfully creative and productive March. I am yet again astounded by the things you make – I love the little yarn bowl and the colour of it is fabulous. I can imagine your home is filled with creativity! 🙂 have a wonderful end of week Lots of love x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Gill! It’s such fun making these amigurumis. 😀 And that yarn bowl really is so handy, no more hunting after the yarn! 😂
      Have a fabulous and creative weekend too!! Lots of love! xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Adorable Koalas, Stunning Yarn bowl, lip balm recipe, books, yummy looking biscuits, sardines… Lots to please everyone. Firstly I have to say: wow -your bowl is superb. Besides the original design, I like the practical side you gave to the artwork and what a beautiful mixture of colors! Definitely a piece that I would buy in a shop. Your amigurumi are all more beautiful than the others and the koalas are no exception. Ah, a natural and ecological lip balm recipe so simple to make. I have already tried a similar experiment and I was quite satisfied with the result but your recipe seems even simpler and I will keep it for a future try. The biscuits look delicious but unfortunately my son is severely allergic to peanuts so this ingredient does not enter my home. Not a big fan of sardines. My grand mother tried to make me eat them when I was young but she eventually gave up as I wouldn’t eat at all. I am a fan of sushi though. We eat sushi once a week in our house. Wonder what is my favorite of this month? Your bowl of pottery! It is absolutely GORGEOUS. Can’t wait to see what you’ll come up with for April. Thanks for this beautiful post, Sarah. See you on IG. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for your lovely comment, Dominique!! 😀
      That lip balm really is easy to make and I absolutely love it! No more chapped lips! 😀
      I’m so sorry that your son is allergic to peanuts, it must be so terrifying to take care what you buy or when you go out and eat in a restaurant. 😦
      Luckily this recipe works also well only with chocolate. 😉
      I admit that so far I only ever had sushi with smoked salmon which doesn’t really count, does it? 😉 It’s one of the things I want to be really sure of that it is prepared by a true chef who knows what he/she’s doing so I don’t get food poisoning! 😉
      Have a fabulous day and an even more awesome month of April, dear friend! xoxo ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • About the peanuts allergy -Like everything else in life we adapt. It was stressful when Olivier was young but now he is 15 years old and it’s much easier to coop with it. And he carries his Epipen with him all the time.
        Starting with salmon sushi is a good way to get use to the taste. You should try the vegetarian sushi too. Yummy! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Wow, there was so much to like in this post! From the photo of your mother to the darling koala bears (I like how you made them hugging, the lip balm, the ceramic bowls and the recipe for sardines!) I also grew up in a house where fish wasn’t eaten (unless you count the Mrs. Paul’s frozen, breaded, fish-like cardboard tasting squares my mom served up when I was young), and only recently came to like it. So of course now it is something we aren’t supposed to eat, due to over-fishing and contaminated waters. I do hope we figure out a way to keep a sustainable source of fresh fish for our diets! Meanwhile, I might even get brave enough to try the sardines…..

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much for your wonderful comment, Ann!! 😀
      I think I had those same cardboard tasting fish squares in kindergarten! 😂 Didn’t do much in way of making me want to explore this food group a bit more. 😉
      Overfishing is truly awful, the greed of humans knows no end, it seems… Would it be so hard to eat fish only like when it is in season, like most vegetables and fruits? I think people could get accustomed to this way of eating.
      If you are willing to try sardines, I would recommend only good quality ones. They’re a bit pricier – still much cheaper than salmon 😉 – but the taste is so much better too!

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re right, we have become so spoiled in thinking that we should have whatever we want to eat, whenever we want to eat it! And I think that with fish in particular, it doesn’t help that so many dieticians and doctors keep telling us to eat fish as often as possible…people actually think they are doing the right thing by eating it so often! More education is needed, before it is too late.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Dear Sarah, this is a five stars for creativity post. You might need a month’s holiday now. I love the little baby koala and tree. You are so clever fitting them all together like that. Didn’t your glazing turn out well! I’m so impressed.

    I love fresh sardines. So difficult to find though. I hope your mum is looking after herself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hahaha! You’re right about those holidays, Tracy! 😀 Thank you so much! It was busy, but also very fun!
      You should have seen that glaze the first time I got it out of my kiln – ugh!! 😂 I don’t know why it is, but glazing is so not my speciality! 😉

      I had some lovely fresh sardines in Spain, but never here. But the canned ones I buy are good quality and taste really good too. 🙂 Going to have another salad later in the day. 😉
      Have a lovely and creative week!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. All done with such passion and talent, Sarah. ❤ So very lovely for your changing seasons…. the koalas are so cute! 🐨 😃 Say hi to your mum and she must be pleased with her hairdo by a special hairdresser! 😉 🌹

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Iris!! 😀 It was such a fun to extend this little koala family with each new week. 😀 Need to find another project that will keep me just as occupied – I’m thinking bunnies now that Easter will be soon upon us. 😉
      My mum says hi to you too! She’s still very happy with her hairdo – and her hairdresser. 😉
      Have a fabulous new week ahead, dear friend! xoxo ❤️🐨

      Liked by 1 person

    • Aww – thanks so much, Lisa! 😀 ❤
      I think you're going to love this lip balm, it's really sooo good!! Have a wonderful and creative week ahead! xxx

      Like

  11. I hardly know where to begin; you have done so much this month and so many different things. I think putting your lip balm in those beautiful bowls is absolute genius; beautiful as well as useful.
    I love your koala family; they make me smile to imagine them sitting on your desk or shelf.
    I’m glad you’ve discovered sardines. Fish is such a fraught food as you say, but if you have a taste for sardines, that is great. I’m not very imaginative with them — for me they’re a breakfast food on a slice of sourdough with lots of black pepper and lemon.
    Your mum’s perm looks great; I always wanted long curls like that, but never have the patience to let my hair grow.
    Thank you so much for being part of the Changing Seasons and letting us into your world. Your talent and creativity constantly inspires me my friend. Wishing you a great month ahead.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you so much, Su! Being part of the Changing Seasons family has become so dear to me, and even if I normally don’t want time to hurry too much, I always look forward to the end of the month to write these posts! 😀
      My mum gifted me with these tiny Chinese bowls – I love blue and white porcelain 😉 – in exchange for the lip balm. 😀
      I have to admit that I didn’t know what to do with sardines before, so I had a look online and found some very nice recipes (you can add them to a Spanish tortilla for example – really yummy!). But I could never have them for breakfast I’m afraid! 😂 Much to the disappointment of my English aunt and some friends from China I just have to have a sweet, continental breakfast – so no eggs, bacon or baked beans on toast for me. 😉
      And let me tell you that it is no fun doing or getting a perm done when your hair is so long!! 😂 I fought about every centimeter with my mum – she did let me cut them: a bit! 😉
      Wishing you a wonderful and creative month ahead too!! xxxxxxxx

      Liked by 2 people

      • I can imagine that perming long hair would be difficult; it looks really good though.
        I alternate between sweet and savoury breakfasts, but probably more savoury. Never baked beans though — that is my only absolute food hate.
        xxxxx 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Oops – forgot to mention that I took a peek at your Instagram – I’m not on it, so can only glimpse your art, which I love. I like the way you’ve interpreted the same basic Japanese image in two seasons, each lovely.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much, Chris! Isn’t it nice how we can make each other smile just with a picture? 😀 Have a great day and awesome week! Cheers! 😀

      Like

  13. Sarah, you’ve learned the art of living – well, healthy, appreciatively. Your mum is a beauty, I can see where yours comes from. I hope she’s feeling well. Koala world now adorably complete – Amigurumitively speaking. All your other critters must be jealous. The yarn bowl is gorgeous, love the colors and that you were able to make something practical for something you love to do. Yes, good quality sardines are as tasty as tuna, I discovered long ago. But then I love fish and we eat it often. And then chocolate peanut butter cookies and lemon blueberry cake – now you’ve made me hungry when I’m really not.

    What’s impressed me most is your lip balm and body butter. I would never have thought of making my own lotions or potions of any sort, but I’m going to try the lip balm. How did you ever come up with this recipe?

    Books I really enjoyed the last month or so: A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson; Inheritance by Dani Shapiro; The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton; Telling the Bees by Peggy Hesketh; The Forgotten by Faye Kellerman. Each of them is very different from the others but they all kept me turning pages and then wishing there were more. I’ll take a look at the books you suggested.

    Can’t wait to see what you do in April, Sarah. This is always one of my favorite posts.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh! Wow! Shari! You always make me bounce up and down with joy when I see one of your wonderfull and long comments – I always think those are the best!!! 😀
      On behalf of my mum – who sends her love btw 😉 – and myself: thank you!!
      Hehe! I’m not sure if the other amigurumi critters are jealous, but I think not – they’re all friends and love to cuddle. 😉
      And you’re so right about good quality sardines – I forgot to mention that one should invest a little money to buy those instead of very cheap ones, much better in taste and consistency. I always buy sardines marinated with olive oil instead of sunflower oil, much healthier too. Do you also eat sushi? I ask because many people who say they like eating fish, draw the line at raw fish. 😉

      I’m so happy you like the idea of making your own lip balm and body butter!! It’s really so worth the effort! No artificial conservatives, colors or whatnot. I came across these recipes when I noticed that nothing I bought would help my itchy and dry skin – fortunately it’s only this bad in winter! – and simply longed for relieve! So I began googling and found some recipes online. 🙂

      Love to read about your books this last month or so! I think I have the one by Faye Kellerman, but haven’t read it yet. My mum gave it to me, she loves her books. 🙂 Like you I tend to read books that are very different from one another. 😀 Will write yours down on my ever-growing TBR list!! 😀

      Wish you a fabulous, happy and creative month of April! xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sushi, absolutely love it, as well as poke, which I consider undressed sushi. I lived in Hawaii as a kid, two different times, and learned to eat sushi as well as a lot of other foods quite different for a kid from New Jersey. However, one of the worst bouts of food poisoning I ever had was from sushi.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I enjoyed reading about your March, Sarah. It sounds very enjoyable! I love the koala duo, very appealing. And how thoughtful of you to give them a tree. The glaze on your yarn bowl turned out beautifully. Now, if given the choice between sardines (shudder) and cookies, I will go with the cookies every time, hands down.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much, Liz! It seemed only fair to give them a tree considering that’s their preferred habitat. 😉 (It also was very easy to crochet – lol!)
      If I had to choose between sardines and cookies, believe, it will be cookies every time. 😉
      Good thing I don’t have to choose and can enjoy both. 😀
      Have a lovely and creative day!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your comment! As you’ve guessed already, Alaskan salmon is quite pricey over here. And when I buy salmon from time to time I always choose the wild one, farmed salmon is saturated with antibiotics and what not!

      Liked by 1 person

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