Merry Christmas, all. We’re spending the holiday’s in CO, and I’m so thankful that it’s colder than 40 degrees. (And that there’s snow on the ground!) Gifting is one of my favorite parts of Christmas. Finding that perfect something that is creative, thoughtful, and will actually be used gives a good sense of accomplishment to me. This year I really got into my present wrapping, too. (Not pictured, the wire cutters, hot glue gun, duct tape, and a bloody hand because Christmas is intense, amiright?) I hope your day is filled with smiles and everything bright. xo
+ Sweet Charming.
+ Do yourself a favor and say hello to this beauty.
We spent a lot of time outside, which was only slightly unfortunate for me because the only footwear I foolishly brought were Vans and Converse, which meant lots of cold feet for me. Totally worth it, though.
+ Anna, or jedi master?
+ Everything was covered in ice, which made all things magical.
+ Angry that none of our really dorky jumping pictures turned out.
+ Not pictured, my fat dog running around living her life in the background.
Now that November is over and done with, I’m taking Christmas in full with eggnog, every Christmas light ever, and so much jolly music. Go, Christmas. Go.
When I was in Portland over the summer I went to Tea Bar and had a cup of their London Fog, which is basically the most delicious and popular tea drink that exists right now. Yesterday, I attempted to make my own version of the London Fog, and it actually turned out pretty great, so I thought I’d share how I did it.
What I love about this recipe is that it’s so easy to customize to your own personal taste.
Here’s a general run down of what you’ll be needing:
+ earl grey tea
+ vanilla extract
+ lavender flavoring (optional)
What you do:
+ fill whatever you’re drinking out of (mug, glass, mason jar, etc.) half way with hot water and steep about two ounces of earl grey tea for five minutes or longer, depending on how strong you want the tea to taste. You can use a tea bag or loose leaf tea for this, it won’t make a big difference once the drink it done.
+ in a small saucepan, add a half of a teaspoon of sugar, two teaspoons of vanilla extract, and a few drops of your lavender flavoring, if you choose to use it. I used lavender essential oil, but I know some people like to make their own lavender extract by soaking the seeds from a lavender plant over night. The essential oil works perfectly for me, though, and you only need a drop or two because it’s so strong.
+ add about a half of a cup of milk to your saucepan on medium heat and keep stirring until all the sugar is dissolved and everything comes to a boil. From there, you can add the milk mixture straight on top of the tea once it’s steeped long enough, or if you want to go the extra mile you can froth up your milk. The most ideal way to do this would be to use one of those hand-held milk froth-er things, but I didn’t have one of those. I ended up whipping the milk on high for around a minute and a half until it was thick and frothy, then I added it to my tea.
+ If you want your drink to be sweeter, you can add more sugar or vanilla extract. If you want it to be more earthy and tea like, change the proportions of tea to milk and add more tea next time.
Super easy, super delicious and perfect for November.
Happy it’s-almost-the-best-month-of-the-year, all.
Every once in a while my heart gets a bit weighed down with the stress and anxiety of little things; The little things that may seem so important in this moment, but won’t matter in a few years. It can be hard to remember that.
+fav “sweet tobacco” candle from Wax Buffalo
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Little City Love was kind enough to send me these little cards, and I’m obsessed with them. Especially the quote by C.S. Lewis. Courage dear heart. (The fact that it has a coffee stain around it makes me giddy.)
Stay trusting in all moments.
Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.
I’m always really excited about brands or companies that are actively trying to make the world a better place, and I typically feel the need to share a little bit about them. Here are a few of my favorites from lately.
BodyOM is a wonderful thing that sends raw, organic snacks straight to your front door (or whatever address you happen to give them). The box that I got came with twelve little packets that included a variety of nuts, seeds, and dried fruits. They are the perfect thing to stick in your bag or backpack for on the run, or to just satisfy a craving you have at home; I’m munching on the dried mango bites this very second. Seriously, so good. They are simple, delicious, convenient, and “unapologetically raw”. As an added bonus, if you use the discount code “BodyOMxOlivia” at the checkout page, you can get $5 off your order! I highly recommend this and I’m 100% sure I’ll be ordering another one soon.
RESQD is a brand that makes me all kinds of happy. They are a “for-purpose” organization that funds education supplies for vulnerable children in places like Bali, Guatemala, and Kenya by selling their artwork on practical things like notebooks, clothing, and postcards. Because they feature the children’s work, RESQD is incorporating them into the process of creating their own opportunities of educational self-sufficiency. It doesn’t get much better than that. Go support this brand, because they definitely deserve it.
Lodestars Anthology was kind enough to send me another issue of their awesome magazine! Spoiler alert, I basically read the entire thing in one sitting (over coffee, of course). I love this magazine even more after reading this issue. Because they only focus on one country per issue, it gives them a chance to delve as deeply as possible into the culture and the beauty of each individual country, and it definitely gives the reader the best experience possible. After reading this issue, I’m super ready to jump on a plane to Australia.
There’s no link available for this cute thing because I just picked it up from the farmers market on the way home from school a few days ago. $3 well spent. It’s made my room feel more like fall, but also brightens everything up in a way that a bright orange pumpkin probably wouldn’t.
I’m grateful today for things like extra sleep, coffee, Sundays, and chilly weather. Happy October, friends.
After five days of grueling classroom time going over a syllabus, too many sentences starting with the phrase “share something interesting about yourself”, an overload of florescent lighting and many cups of coffee, I have finished my first week of school.
*insert sarcastic “woo-hoo” here*
A glimpse into my newly repetitious schedule:
+ I tried my best to finish Cloud Atlas before school started, but things happened and I still haven’t gotten to the end of it. (Weeping). However, I’m counting on it to be a good escape for me whenever I inevitably get tired of trying to identify countless rocks and minerals for earth science.
+ In a move that was totally unlike any move I have ever done in the past, I went out on a limb and bought jeans online that I had never tried on before. In my defense, they are Madewell and they were on sale (like seriously on sale) and I couldn’t help myself. It ended up being a pretty okay decision because these jeans are fantastic and I’m basically in love.
+ Another picture of my delish coffee how utterly shocking and unlike me.
+ One from today featuring a few of my favorite things. 1.) At Rise they have this cool mint toddy, where instead of diluting the cold-brew concentrate with water or milk, they dilute it with mint tea and it is heavenly and all I ever wanted in a summer drink. 2.) Strawberry Daiquiri and Lemon Chiffon macaroons to accompany the cool mint toddy because I couldn’t pass them up with such fancy names. 3.) My new, cute, little pocket notebooks from Work Hard Anywhere – an app that is coming soon for “creatives, freelancers, and entrepreneurs who work beyond the corporate cubicle”. It’s a community where people can share their favorite workspaces with others based on things like wifi, parking, food, seating, how many outlets are available, and other things that make up a comfortable workspace. I’m seriously excited for this app to come out so that I can use it in other cities. (And these notebooks, I mean, c’mon.)
+ Been listening to this for weeks straight and still can’t get over how deep this album is.
- hat from H&M
- jeans from Madewell
- shirt from UO
- watch from DE Time Pieces