Friday, 13 January 2017

Hygge.

Hygge | My General Life - we're talking hygge, so why not grab your favourite hot drink and take a cosy moment...

Hygge is most definitely the "in thing" currently. If you've not heard of hygge, then where have you been? Because it's most definitely on my radar and honestly I mostly live under a rock.

Intrigued by hygge, I picked up a book entitled: The Little Book of Hygge - The Danish Way to Live Well by Meik Wiking, in the hope that it might enlighten me as to what hygge actually is and most importantly how I could add some hygge to my life.

The book itself talks about the many ways in which one can create hygge in their life, through: 
♥ the environment - soft lighting and candles, throws and cosy corners 
♥ relationships - social relationships play a big role not only in hygge but in overall happiness
♥ activities - usually social and chilled 
♥ food - comforting and slow is the key

My General Life - Let's Talk Hygge

Hygge is a word that doesn't really translate into English and from reading the book I sense that it's more of a feeling than an actual definitive thing. The book talks about hygge in dimensions that are all linked to the senses. Touch, taste, sound, sight and smell are all important when it comes to hygge. But then it talks about a sixth sense of hygge - a feeling of safety, a feeling of trust. And all this then links into a overall feeling of wellbeing and happiness.  

What I really took from the book is that hygge, in my perception, is about enjoying the everyday. Savouring the moment, but recognising that each moment has a past, present and future that can all be savoured too. Make time for those you love and care about, because social relationships fuel happiness and happiness then fuels social relationships. Take things slow and take pleasure in the minutiae. That, to me, is what makes for a hyggelig time and is something that I'll be trying to be more aware of. 

My General Life - Let's Talk Hygge

I highly recommended that you give The Little Book of Hygge a read if you're interested in learning more about hygge, but also about happiness and how the aspects of hygge can lead you to a happier and more content life - because who doesn't want that?!

Let's start a conversation:
What are your thoughts on hygge? Are you intrigued as I was about the topic? I'd love to hear your thoughts either in the comments below, or drop me a tweet @_hellojordan

Hygge | My General Life - we're talking hygge, so why not grab your favourite hot drink and take a cosy moment...

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Project 333 & Minimalism.

I'm talking wardrobe decluttering, minimalism and Project 333. Not sure what that is? Why not grab a brew and come find out!

If you read my recent post on minimalism then you'll know that this year I'm making a conscious effort to downsize my belongings and get rid of things that I just don't need. One of the goals I set for working towards this was to try out Project333 - as this is something I only recently discovered I thought I'd share more about it here on the blog, just in case you're curious.

Project 333 was launched onto my radar when I watched Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things on Netflix. Project 333 is the brain child of Courtney Carver, who started Project 333 along with her website Be More WithLess in 2010.

The crux of it is basically trimming down your wardrobe to just 33 items that you will wear over a 3 month period. That includes your outerwear, jewellery, accessories and shoes alongside your clothing. However, the 33 items does not include your underwear, nightwear, at-home chill clothes, workout wear (providing that your workout wear is only worn for working out) and sentimental jewellery that you wear daily e.g. a ring/earrings. 


I'm talking wardrobe decluttering, minimalism and Project 333. Not sure what that is? Why not grab a brew and come find out!


Now this doesn't mean that you then have to permanently get rid of all your other items of clothing. Courtney suggests just boxing them away which I think is a great idea as after the 3 months you can then evaluate if there is anything you really missed or if there items you feel you really don't need anymore. 

I also like that Courtney stressed that this isn't "project suffering" and that if you need to adapt the model, change it or or replace certain items then you totally can. I guess it just gives a framework for reducing the amount of clothing you have and allowing you to enjoy wearing it and styling it within your capsule wardrobe. 

Project 333 really appealed to me because, honestly, I find myself wearing the same things over and over again anyway. It wasn't hard for me to pick the key items that I knew needed to remain in my clothing collection. For the remainder of the items I tried to pick staples that were versatile and could be worn with a variety of outfits.

I also chose to include my work uniform within the 33 items - this equated to 9 items overall (this includes tunics x5, trousers x2, vest x1 and boots x1) and so left me with 24. This doesn't sound much but really when I get home I tend to change into my at-home chill clothes (as previously mentioned, they're not included although I do try to limit these to just a few items that I rotate), so there's only really the weekend that I wear "actual" clothes. With this in mind I felt that, actually, 24 items was doable for my general wardrobe. 


I'm talking wardrobe decluttering, minimalism and Project 333. Not sure what that is? Why not grab a brew and come find out!

So what items do I have in my Project 333 wardrobe? Well I have some jeans (a blue and a black pair), leggings and my dungarees as my bottoms. I then have a 7 tops (including tshirts, long sleeves, a vest and 1 smarter top), 2 shirts (1 checked and 1 denim), 2 dresses, a chunky cardigan, 2 hoodies, my coat, 2 scarves and an extra pair of earrings. I then have two pairs of shoes (my Star Wars Vans and my Dr Martens). My work shoes could be worn outside of work if I so wished (they're just another pair of Dr Marten boots).

And that is my 24 items. It doesn't sound a lot but honestly, I'm finding that it works pretty well for me. I'm quite a casual dresser anyway so the fact that my Project 333 wardrobe is all pretty casual suits me just fine. I've been wearing this wardrobe for about 2 weeks now and so far there haven't really been any difficulties. I'm intrigued to see how the next 3 months will unfold and how my Project 333 wardrobe will fare.

Let's start a conversation:
What are your thoughts on a minimalist wardrobe? Is Project 333 something you think you could manage? I'd love to hear your thoughts either in the comments below, or drop me a tweet @_hellojordan

I'm talking wardrobe decluttering, minimalism and Project 333. Not sure what that is? Why not grab a brew and come find out!


Friday, 6 January 2017

Soup-er Greens Soup [VEGAN]*

Here's a nutrient packed vegan soup recipe that is sure to sort out the post-Christmas slump. Click to read more!

Soups, if you ask me, are a great way to pack in your greens and ramp up the goodness. They’re also perfect for warming you up on a chilly winters day. So not only do they get you closer to your five-a-day, but they’re there to give your tummy a hug too!

Now I will totally hold my hands up and say that this isn’t the prettiest soup in the word, but it's well and truly packed full of goodness and will work wonders for clearing out the post holiday cobwebs. There's oodles of green leafy veg in this soup, including broccoli, kale, cabbage a spinach - all of which are packed with fibre, vitamins A & C and folate.


My General Life - Soup-er Soup [VEGAN]

To add an extra boost of goodness, I've also added some of Indigo Herbs Super Powders*. Their Super Mushroom Nutri-Complex can help to boost concentration and support the immune system which Supergreens Powder which contains wheatgrass, barley grass, moringa, spirulina and chorella is packed with vitamins A, C & E along with a range of B vitamins. Alongside the Super Powders there's also a touch of Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder for an extra boost of vitamins with a hint of caffeine - so if all of that goodness doesn't give you some get up and go then I don't know what will!

I put this recipe together using my Instant Pot, which has honestly revolutionised my kitchen and cuts the cooking time of the soup down to just 5 minutes (yes - you can cook lentils in 5 minutes!). You can still follow the steps below to cook on the hob, but I would advise using pre-cooked lentils, otherwise you're in for some seriously soggy veg, along with increasing the cooking time slightly to ensure that all your veggies are cooked through.


My General Life - Soup-er Soup [VEGAN]


WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

♥ 1 large onion - diced
♥ 4-5 garlic cloves - finely chopped
♥ 1 tsp oil
♥ 1 head of broccoli - chunked
♥ 200g cavalo nero/black kale - sliced
♥ 1/2 head savoy cabbage - sliced
♥ 1 large handful spinach
♥ ½ cup green lentils - rinsed
♥ 1 litre vegetable stock
♥ 1 tsp fresh/dried thyme
♥ 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
♥ Oat/Soy cream (optional)
♥ Salt & pepper to season
♥ Nutritional yeast/vegan bacon crumbles/rye bread to serve

Here's a nutrient packed vegan soup recipe that is sure to sort out the post-Christmas slump. Click to read more!

WHAT TO DO:

♥ Add the oil to your pot and using the saute setting gently fry the onion and garlic for 5 minutes.
♥ Add the chopped vegetables to the pot and stir through.
♥ Add the Super Powders, Matcha, thyme and chilli flakes to the stock and stir well to combine.
♥ Add the stock to the pot, pop the lid on and cook on the manual or soup settings for 5 minutes.
♥ Once finished, quick release the steam, add the plant cream (if using) and blend (N.B: my blender encountered an unfortunate smoothie incident, therefore I used a stick blender which didn't get the soup quite smooth, but I find the chunkier texture is more satiating).
♥ Season to taste and serve with a drizzle of plant cream, nutritional yeast,vegan bacon crumbles and toasted rye bread - delicious!

My General Life - Soup-er Soup [VEGAN]

What's your favourite vitamin packed soup recipe? I'd love for you to share your thoughts either in the comments below, or drop me a tweet @_hellojordan

* these products were very kindly sent to me for recipe creation. As always, all thoughts are my own.

Monday, 2 January 2017

Let's Talk | Minimalism.

Let's talk about minimalism. Why not grab a brew and take five with me to find out more...

Is it just me, or is minimalism becoming more popular? Or maybe it's just one of those scenarios whereby because you're interested in something you take more notice of it and see it popping up everywhere. Regardless, minimalism is something that intrigues me. The idea of being content with owning the bare minimum seems somewhat freeing, liberating and empowering.

As time goes by I am becoming more and more aware of consumerism and all the stuff that is thrown in our faces on a daily basis. Stuff that we don't really need, but you know that ad campaign is just so convincing that you might just have to give it a try because you never know, it might just change your life. I know this feeling too well. I see something I like the look of and I feel this need creeping up inside of me, it's total FOMO and it drives this desire to have.

But, why do we need to have? We live in a society of excess. Of constant new and improved everything. And as corny as it sounds, the older I get the more I want to move away from that. To go against that urge to need and consume and to just be content with what I have without the need for more.

A recent watch of Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things on Netflix, along with finding more and more minimalist bloggers and Youtubers for inspiration (such as The Minimalists, Jenny Mustard (who's apartment is total Pinterest goals if you ask me), Vegan Family TV, The Fairly Local Vegan and Soph's Choices to name but a few!) has me all inspired to put thoughts into action.

So over the next few months I'm on a bit of a mission to step away from the stuff and live well with less. That's not to say that I have no intention of ever buying anything ever again - let's be realistic. But I would like to think that I can reign myself in a little and make the most of what I already have. To help guide this process I thought it was worth setting myself a few minimalism goals that I can work towards:

1. Downsize my belongings: I don't think I have a lot of what one might consider "tat", however, I know I definitely have things that I don't really need and have for the sake of it, just in case. So I'm going to dig out The life Changing Magic of Tidying, find the things that really spark joy and aim to get rid of the rest. And by get rid of I mean recycle, donate or sell - I don't like waste so I'm trying to avoid just binning things.

2. Try out Project 333: I think I'll do a separate blog post on this, but this is basically downsizing your wardrobe to just 33 items that you wear over 3 months that you can mix and match and really enjoy.

3. Create more space: I'm fortunate to have a lovely home. Honestly it's probably far more space that we actually need, but it doesn't feel that way because of all the stuff we have crammed into ever nook and cranny. I want my home to feel light, airy and clutter free. A tall ask for someone who isn't overly keen on tidying, but I feel like if I had less stuff everything would have a home and there would be less to tidy - what's not to love about that?

4. Think before buying: I know this is going to be a challenge. I'm a bit of an impulse buyer and I really want to reign that in. More so because I want to try my hardest to save money and spending it on unnecessary things isn't going to help that. So I'm aiming to be more mindful of what I buy and why I'm buying it. I'm also going to make the effort to invest more in quality, ethically sourced/produced items that will last e.g. clothing, rather than "fast fashion" that won't last more than a few months.

Let's start a conversation:
What are your thoughts on minimalism? Are you as intrigued as I am, or is it totally not for you? I'd love to hear your thoughts either in the comments below, or drop me a tweet @_hellojordan


Let's talk about minimalism. Why not grab a brew and take five with me to find out more...