donderdag 31 oktober 2013

Surprise, Surprise!

Cup of tea with a view
So, what do you think?

Do you like my new layout? I'm quite proud of the banner I made, I made it for my last lay out as well but there were some bugs in it and now I managed to fix it completely! I decided to change it up because I was getting bored of the color-scheme, so this time I chose for a design that has my favorite colors in it. I hope you guys like it too and that I didn't scare you away with my new lay-out ;).

Another thing that has changed is that I've now added a 'recipe' button to my navigation bar. Before it was a 'photo' button, but even though I like photographing, I don't take enough pictures to put them on display on a separate part of my blog. Recipes however, that is something I know I will be posting lots of. Food, whether it is a nice dinner or a fabulous pie, has some magical power. A nice plate of food and even preparing food always make me smile, and I'm convinced it works that way for most people. No better reason than that to include it in my blog.

The fact that I've added a new section to my blog called 'recipes' does not mean I will only be posting recipes as there are many things that make smile, but every time I post a recipe it will show up on my home page, and it will be collected under 'recipes' as well.

A part of my collection
As you can see in the picture above I have a nice little collection of cookbooks (actually, this is not all of it, I've got some stored at my parents place as well). I love getting them out and looking through them, but I hardly ever make recipe exactly as Jamie or Julia tells me to do. I am and remain (at least for the next year) a student and I often don't have the budget to cook recipes that have ingredient lists longer than one page... So the type of recipes you will find here are all student-budget-adaptations of some of my favorite recipes (and on top of that, all the recipes that I will post will be in English).

So, are you still there?  I hope I didn't scare you away ;), so let me know what you think of my new lay-out and leave a comment below :).

lots of love,
xoxo Floor

zaterdag 26 oktober 2013

Things I've been loving in October:

Happy saturday!

I hope you're enjoying your free time as much as I am! At the moment I'm seated at my parents' kitchen table, I finished a belgium beer and an apple pie (baking the apple pie... not eating it, and for the record, drinking the belgium beer, nog brewing it). The Netherlands has turned into a multi-colored painting, from a vibrant green to a yellow/red/green/blue sky canvas. It is the best time of year to be near the country side so there was no better occasion to come back to my home town for the weekend.

Apple pie and autumn go together as an umbrella and rain, even though you can buy apples all year round, you get the best quality in autumn and what better way is there to celebrate them than by baking a pie? I will be adding a separate page to my blog where I will post my favorite recipes, so keep an eye out for that!
the best apple pie ever!

Autumn is my favorite season because of various reasons: it starts to become a little bit colder which means I can wear more layers that keep me cozy and warm, it is the season of apple pie, the colors of the leaves turn the whole world into a beautiful painting and it is my birthday! In about 2 weeks I will turn 23 for another year (ha-ha, beer increases my sense of humor exponentially)! The best thing about my birthday is that I will get to see some of my friends that I don't see too often, I'm already looking forward to that.
Lovely autumn colors

My second favorite is a beauty related item. I really like watching beauty youtube videos, especially the ones by Sprinkleofglitter, Zoella, Tanya Burr (Pixi2woo) and fleurdeforce. At least one of them has talked about a dry shampoo by Batiste. I've bought my first dry shampoo over a year ago (still, quite late, I know) from a brand called 'Andrelon' which is a Dutch brand and I HATE IT. It smells horrible, I can't seem to get the white stuff out of my hair and it doesn't make my hair feel fresh AT ALL. Then 2 weeks ago I was walking around one of the two larger Dutch drugstores (Kruidvat), and to my surprise I suddenly saw some little cans of Batiste... you can already guess my reaction. I bought the one with the coconutty-flavor (I didn't take a picture and I didn't bring it with me to my parents...) and I LOVE IT. I don't like washing my hair too often, absolutely not every day, usually every other day but I if I can I wash it every three days. I feel like it goes limp and life-less if I wash it more often. This is where Batiste comes in:

  1. It smells wonderful, not too overpowering, but every time my hair swings around my face I get a nice whiff.  
  2. I can hardly see any white powder.
  3. It makes my hair feel like I just washed it. 
Three great reasons to buy a large can of Batiste if Kruidvat will be so kind to keep stocking it <3.

The last thing I've been loving this month is ASOS. Actually, it's not really this month, I could love ASOS all year long but I'm a bit nervous ordering clothes online. Especially today my love for their website has blossomed again, I went into town to shop for some new clothes but it was one of those days... Everything I tried on was just not right, not the right color, not the right fit, not what I was looking for. And then I went online. I found at least six dresses that came in the fit I love, the colors I love, and they were dresses: just what I was looking for! If I end up ordering one or two I'll put some pictures up, before I do that I'm going to have to make a decision...

Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment if you liked it, I'd love that ;)

xoxo Floor

maandag 21 oktober 2013

Work hard, play hard!

So here I am: monday night, quarter to eight in the evening, in my bed wearing PJ's...What a difference from the last couple of nights!
I've mentioned it before but I am part of a committee that organizes cultural activities for international students in Utrecht (the Netherlands). Twice a year we organize a complete weekend in contrast to the usual day-trips. Last weekend was one of those weekends and we went to my birth-region: a weekend filled with doing dishes, running around, counting people, getting on and off the bus and a serious lack of sleep! None of these things sound particular nice, but we had a lot of fun as well! Some highlights were the dinner organized by a caterer (at least for me... I love good food, especially in enormous amounts) and the visit to a local brewery. We stayed at a large farm transformed into a group accommodation located on the southern-Dutch country side of which you can see a picture below.

But all of this has its consequences, I woke up this morning sooo tired that I slept through my alarm (and believe me, that never happens), my whole body was aching: ears, head, body, everything. That was to be expected, but the sad thing is I have two exams this week... so cross your fingers for me! 

When you're ill you have to eat soup, not only because it's good for you but also because I really couldn't bring myself to cooking anything else. So I made my favorite: zucchini/courgette soup. I hope you are feeling well, but if there ever is a moment when you're not feeling so well I can advise you to make this soup:

Zucchini Soup
for 4 people:
2 zucchini's
2 small onions
2 cloves of garlic
750 ml of water
1,5 stock cube
1 tbs of boursin
a little bit of butter or olive oil
1 tsp of dried parsley
0,5 tsp of dried thyme

Chop the onion and the garlic really fine, when your large pan is hot, add your butter or oil and start to sweat off your onions. When the onions are starting to get soft add the garlic. Chop your zucchini's in small pieces and add them to the pan. Let them cook for about 15 minutes or until all of the zucchini's are nice, soft and a little bit mushy. Add the parsley and the thyme and then add the water and the stock cubes. If I had the time I would make my own stock, but when I'm ill I don't even want to bother, I just want some soup :P. I let the soup bubble away for 15 more minutes and then I wizz it up with a hand-held blender (in Dutch: staafmixer, honestly the word blender is not a good translation google!). Then I add the boursin and I wizz it up once again. 

Pour it into a nice floral bowl or any other bowl that makes you happy, serve with breadsticks or crackers!

Pfff okay... I'm just going to read one more article and then I'm going to sleep. Give the recipe a try and leave me a comment if you'd like seeing some more recipes on my blog! 

Thanks for reading!
xoxo Floor

donderdag 17 oktober 2013

Should do, have to, want to, will.

I feel like I should write something on my blog whenever I want to get my thoughts straight and today is one of those days. I'm not much of a planner, at least I don't like to plan but I do see the benefits of it. The result of never wanting to plan is that all of a sudden there is nothing else to do but to plan.

The next stage in my very logical thinking process (ahem) is to "just figure things out and make a little list in my head, because who needs pen and paper to sort things out". But honestly, that makes things even more chaotic, I wake up panicking in the middle of the night trying to keep an overview of all the things I have to do. What I then have to do is make a list of all the things that need to be done. Suddenly I realize there are only five things on my list...
Real to do lists are always more realistic than the ones in your head
Do you guys recognize the feeling that a to do list is always bigger in your head than in reality... what a realization... I should write that down ;). With having to write down your lists comes having to cross tasks off your list, but finishing your tasks takes a lot less time than thinking about them. Another reason why to make lists!

When you have finally finished all of the tasks on your list it is time to think about what you want to do. Personally I can't wait for this week and the next week to be over, both my head and my to do lists are filled with deadlines, even though some of them are a lot of fun to do. But I haven't cooked a single meal this week, I've been out for dinner every night, even though cooking is my number one way to de-stress. 

I also really wanted to write a blog post, so I guess I  should do that to make me feel better. Maybe adding fun stuff to your to do list is something that you have to do... I know I will ;). 

Some fun things you should do are:
  • watching this video clip: 
  • And if you enjoyed reading this post leave me a comment, because that would make me so happy, and making other people happy can never be a bad thing, right? ;) 

xoxo Floor

maandag 14 oktober 2013

Window-shopping, lots of sleep and a 160th birthday

Ahhh weekend, I'd almost forgotten what that word meant! (Really, I shouldn't be complaining, I know a lot of people who have even less idea of what weekend means than I do...). Still, I've been looking forward to the past weekend for a while and I've enjoyed it from beginning till end. It was the first time in weeks I didn't have to worry about a deadline during the weekend because I was smart enough to finish most of my work during the week and I had a lot of fun things planned to do, so there wasn't even time to worry about deadlines and exams!
My grandparents both turn 80 this autumn so they organized a big party on sunday for all of their family and friends so that is why Joost and I (Joost obviously is my boyfriend :) ) spent the weekend in my hometown Maastricht. It's always good to be home. I still love the city, especially in fall, my mom always cooks up her best dishes when we're home (or at least, that's what it feels like), and there is lots of time to sleep and just hang out. On saturday we had to get a present for my grandparents and while in town we did a little bit of shopping. Since it is not the best time of the month to be shopping I didn't buy anything major but I did find a nice sweater that is definitely going on my wish-list:
Pretty sweater from Maison Scotch
The sweater is a red/orange copper tone with some gold specks in it, it was sooo pretty, and sooo out of my budget! I did get something that is in my budget though, one of the larger drugstores in the Netherlands had a little deal going on for the brand 'Gosh', and I got such a nice little eyeshadow pallete that I thought I'd show you guys. Now beware: I actually used my decent camera to take this photo, but I'm a rubbish photographer haha :P. In the shot you also see my two current favorite nail-polishes. They're by L'Oreal and they're the best nail-polishes I've ever had, they stay put for a whole week without chipping! I'm wearing the grey nail-polish on my fingers now, I've had it on for the whole weekend now and as you can see, they still look picture perfect! 

Gosh Smoky eyes palette in 03 Plum and L'Oreal nail-polishes in 101 and 617

Nail-polish 617 by L'Oreal

(Fun fact, I wanted to take a close up shot from my nails, and I thought it might be useful to use my macro lens to do that, but because I'm such a noob, I didn't realize that I'd have to get at a cm distance from my nails so that I couldn't photograph my whole hand... obviously I didn't use those pictures whahaha!)

My grandparents birthday was a lot of fun, nice wines, good food, great people (and may I add, a LOT of babies, I think there is a little baby-boom going on in my family). Our present made my grandmother cry, but that's not very difficult to do haha. Now it's time to get back to the real world, one paper was finished this morning and now I should start studying for my exams... 
I hope you had a great weekend as well, I'd love it if you would leave me a comment (or maybe a suggestion on where I could find a similar sweater for a smaller price? :D).

Bye xoxox 

woensdag 9 oktober 2013

How to get your room right for studying?

When it comes to working or studying at home everyone has their own preferences, obviously, but during the last week I changed a couple of things in my room to make it a bit easier to spend the day sitting behind my desk.

Now you have to know the following things:

  1. I am a student 
  2. I live in a student-house with 9 other people
  3. We don't have a real common room besides the kitchen (even though our kitchen is reasonably cosy), 
  4. I don't like to study in a library. 
I've got exams coming up and a lot of other different little jobs to do, so even though I don't have any classes to go to anymore, I have to drag myself out of bed each day, sit behind my desk and start finishing some things. The getting out of bed part is essential because sometimes I'm too lazy to even do that and I'll 'study whilst staying in bed', quite a logical decision because the distance from my bed to my desk is about half a meter, so that's not even worth getting out of bed for. Of course, 'working' from my bed never works. I'll end up watching youtube videos, checking facebook a little bit too often etcetera. I don't like to study in libraries because I like to have my 'things' around me, and if I'd have to bring all of my 'things', the librarian would probably get a bit angry with me. That is why I organized my desk area a bit more, I'll leave all my study and work related things on the desk, everything in their own place and then I'll HAVE to sit behind my desk to work. I'll show you a picture of my desk:

My little desk
Wow... on the picture it looks really cluttered, but really, for me everything I need is on that desk and everything has its own place... First of all you see my MacBook. I love apple, have since I was 14 or so (that's almost 10 years haha!). Most of my work involves writing or reading, so that's why I need my laptop. In front of that (closer to the camera) is my knitting, the fascinating combination of two worlds don't you think?... As I wrote in my previous post, it can get quite addictive at times, but it's a great way to relax as well. In front of my laptop is the book I'm currently reading (about Strategy, Control and Design, not the most exciting stuff) and in the right corner of my desk is my pot of tea and a tea glass. In the left corner of my desk I put up all of my magazines and folders for my job. Before I used to make piles on the table but that would make everything so cluttered... This a lot easier to organize. In front of that a bowl of apples and a mug with some pens. The poster on the wall is from one of my favorite magazines called 'Flow', it is Dutch but they've made an international version recently as well. I can really recommend it, if you want to take a look at their website you can click here. Under the poster my kettle and some photo frames and behind my desk a wooden chair with a nice pillow on top. There are some other little things on my desk such as a notepad, some pieces of paper and a cotton pad (because I did my make up at my desk as well), but that's not really worth getting into. 

What makes this work for me so well is the fact that I have a place to store my files and currently used books and I've always got a pot of tea in my vicinity. I actually keep the curtain in front of my desk closed, and the curtain above my bed open, otherwise I wouldn't stop peeking over my laptop screen to the 'real world', because that would really be distracting ;). 

That's it for my desk, but I did something else... I rediscovered some 'fairy-lights' (or 'christmas-lights' as I would call it literally translated from Dutch) and hung them above my bed, so pretty <3. Actually you see my laptop on my bed in the picture below, obviously I wasn't studying or working anymore when I took that picture ;).
Fairy-lights, ahhw <3
Let me know what you think, and if you have any tips to make my desk more organized you can just leave me a comment or send me a message in any other way :). 

xoxo Floor

maandag 7 oktober 2013

Soooo many laughs!

The name of my blog was meant to be somewhat inspirational. Promoting appreciation for the small things in life. This does not mean that I have completely mastered the technique, though I have my moments where I suddenly realize how much fun I've been having. My life has been quite hectic lately, I started a new masters degree, do 'volunteer work' (don't know whether it should be called that way, it's a loooot of fun!) for Erasmus Student Network and I work on freelance basis here and there. That compared with a lot of assignments gives me quite a lot of stress. My weekends get blurred with deadlines and when I'm at my parents place in my hometown I hardly get out of the door, however looking through my photos from last weekend made me realize I actually had a lot of fun too, that's why I'd like some photos with you :).

Me and my boyfriend at one of my best friends party haha

My mom thought I need to start meditating, and according to her knitting is almost like meditating so she helped me get started again hehe. It's addicting though... I was so bored on the train yesterday that I had to knit a couple of rows (thats knitting-lingo for you)

Funny boyfriend went to the fair and bought me some candy haha. 

Other things I love to do is hang around on YouTube watching funny videos, my favorite from this weekend was Sprinkle of Glitter's video with her little daughter, so cute! If you're in need of a smile you should definitely watch it :) 

Its just these random things that make life so much fun :), I hope you enjoyed your weekend too, and if you'd like: please share your best moments from this weekend in the comments below, I'd love to read them! 


zaterdag 5 oktober 2013


Just a short little message for now because I've already spent hours tinkering on my blog this afternoon.

(Did you notice? I changed the header and added some buttons that link you to new pages, I used a little YouTube video that showed me how, but apart from that I did it all by myself! You'll find the link to the YouTube video below.)

From now on I can also be found on Bloglovin! So just follow this link and it will take you to my page on Bloglovin :)

The YouTube clip about making custom headers
Follow my blog with Bloglovin

donderdag 3 oktober 2013

It's been such a long time!


Did you hear that? That was the sound of a past promise whooshing away...

After I came back from holiday I suddenly lost the urge to write any blog posts, even though I like writing things for other people to read. Since the summer I've started a masters degree in Business Administration (Management Consulting to be precise) and I've had to write a lot of assignments which hasn't been all that bad. The only sad thing about those assignments is that even though you put a lot of effort in it (or at least, that's what you're supposed to do), nobody will ever read it again...
So I won't be making any new promises, I just want to say that I'm going to try to write a bit more on my blog, either about things that concern my studies or other things that I've been enjoying.

Lately things that I've been enjoying are YouTube video's, especially the ones about beauty and makeup. I like makeup, but I don't necessarily feel that I can't go out the door without wearing any, but its nice to play with and these girls on YouTube make it all look so fun! I've especially been enjoying Zoe (Zoella is her username) and Tanya (Pixi2woo), so you should check those youtubers out if you feel like learning a bit about makeup :).

I've got a Floor-Plan ha-ha!