Sunday, November 29

Happy 1st Advent!

It seems I'm spending more time in the kitchen these days than at my desk!
I made these chocolate orange cookies this morning, and now my whole house smells yummy :)
Here's the recipe:


100 gr dark chocolate (chopped)
125 gr butter
125 gr sugar, pinch of salt
1 free-range egg (medium)
grated rind of 1 organic orange
200 gr white flour
1 tsp. baking powder

chocolate for the glaze ( I used one with 65% cocoa)

How to

Beat the butter, sugar, salt, egg and orange rind. Mix the baking powder with the flour and sift into the butter mixture. Add the chopped chocolate and quickly knead to a firm dough. Wrap it in foil and leave in the refridgerator for at least 2 hours.
Roll out the dough to about 5mm thickness. Cut out any shape you wish (mine is a flower). Place on a non-stick baking sheet and bake for 10 - 15 min. at 200°C.
Let cool. Melt chocolate in a small bowl. Dip each cookie into the chocolate and place on a rack to dry.
Store the cookies in a cool and dry place.

Friday, November 27

Catnip Kitty

Sammy needs to lose weight. He's not a particularly active cat, so the vet advised us to reduce his daily intake of food. No more snacks! He's been on a diet for about a month now, I thought he deserved a little I made a little toy shaped like a cat and filled with organic catnip!

Tuesday, November 24

Expect the Unexpected

My mini-event was a wonderful experience! Who would have thought that a room full of women (and one cute toddler) plus a table full of bags translates into lots of FUN!
Since it was an informal affair I wasn't under too much pressure, and by the end of the day we were talking as if we had known each other for ages.
Sales-wise I sold a few make-up bags, but surprisingly my handbags and shopping totes drew the most attention, although I hadn't even planned on selling them! These are bags that I made about two years ago, and I actually took them out of the cupboard in the last minute, because I needed to fill some space on the table. At that time I didn't have my label yet - nevertheless one lady was so delighted she bought two straight away. I also received two custom orders for the same type of bag. I am very pleased, especially since things are slowing down with my other work as we are nearing the end of the year. 

As mentioned in my previous post I will gradually list the remaining bags in my shop, but I won't be making any new products until next year. This cute make up bag is now for sale in my shop. If you look closer you'll see the retro print is made up of tiny little birdies. I embellished the front with a satin ribbon and bow for that chic touch!

Saturday, November 21

Dunibagz Party

I am currently cleaning, clearing and re-organizing my office/design/sewing space, because I'm expecting a group of customers in my home. This is a first for me and I am excited! That is the reason I haven't been listing much in my online shop, seeing as I can always add the bags that don't sell later. I have been busy attending to practical matters, like attaching price tags to my collection, making sure I have enough business cards etc. I don't know what the customers are expecting - something along the line of a tupperware party perhaps, except it will be bags: a Dunibagz party :) I have thought a lot about the organizational aspect of this mini-event, and have decided that after greeting the customers in my office - which is where they will see how my product is developed - and hopefully admire my professionalism :), I will then take them through to our living and dining area, which is quite spacious, and therefore ideal for people to browse my bag selection, which I will display on the dining room table. I am aiming for a relaxed yet professional atmosphere. I will offer hot and cold beverages along with biscuits, but nothing chocolate-y for obvious reasons. And this is where it gets tricky. Naturally, nobody wants to get cookie crumbs all over the products, but I can't exactly expect them to look but not touch... So, I'm just going to hope for the best, and this goes for the sales too!

Friday, November 20

Listening to the voice of my heart

It is not a nice feeling sitting in a cold and austere room at the clinic, while the (lady-) surgeon discusses the rather radical (in my opinion) removal of certain body tissue with her assistant as if I wasn't there. Turns out my 'lump' is an atheroma, which in itself is harmless, BUT it is located at a very unfortunate area in my throat. Naturally, I am cautious about having the surgery done. I will definitely get a second opinion. Fortunately my survival instinct and passion for life kicked in shortly after leaving the clinic, and one of my favourite quotes sprang to mind:
The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts, therefore guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature. Marcus Aurelius AD 121 - 180
Therefore, I refuse to be intimidated by this surgeon or anyone else, and I will not succumb to the 'doom loop'. Looking back, this entire year has been one health issue chasing the other, yet I have consistently remained optimistic, despite the people in my life despairing about my various conditions. I have ceased to explain why I'm convinced that all is well, and that all I am experiencing this year is a low point in life from which I will emerge stronger and even more optimistic! Oh wow! This post has turned out quite philosophical, so maybe it's apt I close with these simple yet profound words:
Our life is what our thoughts make it.
Wishing everyone a terrific weekend!

Tuesday, November 17

Little girls love make up bags too!

I feel better today. Thank you, my blog friends, for your well-wishes! I was feeling down because my doctor discovered a weird lump at the base of my throat, and I have a CT scan scheduled for tomorrow. I kind of thought I would be spared having the radioactive agent injected into me yet again. Oh well. Better to find out what that lump is, right? Anyway, a few weeks ago I made some more gifts - for a few pre-teen girls I know, and who always complement my make up bags whenever they visit. They will be getting these for Nikolaus Tag, which is celebrated here on December 6th. Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, November 15

Mommy let me blog today!

Hi all! Mommy asked me to fill in for her today, because she is not feeling well :( This is my first time to blog, so I'm a bit nervous...bear with me. Let me tell you what I did yesterday! Well...I slept quite a bit, and then it was mealtime. Afterwards I played with my mousie, but I got bored so I went off to sleep. When I woke up there was a sliver of sunshine, so I went out on to the terrace to get some fresh air and watch the duckies play in the pond. But then it started raining and I got my paws wet, so I hurried back inside! Mommy was snoozing on the couch, so I snuggled down with her (my favourite activity). I must have lost track of time, because when I woke up it was mealtime again! Later that evening I saw a little moth - I tried to catch it, but I got bored after a while... Anyway, it was almost bedtime, so I crawled up on Daddy's lap while he watched TV. I must've dozed off...too much excitement for one day, I guess! And what have you been doing this weekend? purrs, Sammy

Tuesday, November 10

Gifts galore!

Each year I get THE LIST. Let me explain...the list is a list of requests from family and friends to make something as gifts for Christmas. I usually get the first request late September, and it gets longer the closer we get to Christmas. This year was no exception :) Let me share a few of the items I made. The recipients are unaware that they will be getting these, so it's safe for me to show. Various aprons (the yellow one and the ovenmitt is a set) Black floral make-up bag, XL gift bag (with gift inside) which doubles as a shopping bag There are a few still left on my list, so I better get cracking :)

Monday, November 9

East-west German unity

Today is the 20 year anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Heads of government from all over the world, including US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, have gathered in Berlin to commemorate this momentous occasion. It is indeed a day for celebration, but let us not forget that atleast 140 people died at the hands of former East German border troops, simply for choosing freedom. My mother was one of the lucky ones.

Saturday, November 7

I ♥ Hearts

Although I didn't plan it, it looks like it's going to be a heart theme at our house this Christmas! Here are my ' hearts with wings ', which make unique Christmas tree decorations. And continuing the heart theme...I received this sweet award from Jenie. Her four blogs are highly entertaining, sometimes thoughtful, sometimes funny, but always 'from the heart'. Thank you, Jenie, for passing this on to me! This award is given to blogs that make you feel all warm inside :) And since there are soooo many blogs I visit that make me feel all warm inside, it's impossible for me to narrow them down to just nine. So I encourage you, my dear blog friends, readers and commenters, to pick up this award, because all of you deserve it!

Wednesday, November 4

Sweet and Simple holiday wreath

There's nothing like a brisk walk - then curling up on the sofa with a pile of magazines and a pot of tea - to get the creative juices flowing again. Here's a simple idea you can make to add some holiday cheer to your home! You will need: scraps of fabric - a red theme looks good natural wreath (mine is a small one) ribbon brad (optional) Polyfill stuffing sewing machine, thread, needle sharp fabric scissors hot glue gun piece of cardboard How to: Draw a heart about 7.5 x 9 cm (3 x 3.5 '') on to a piece of thin cardboard. Cut it out. Fold your pieces of fabric in half. Then draw the heart shape on to the fabric. The larger the wreath, the more hearts you will need. I made five. Sew around the heart shape, leaving a small opening for turning. Cut out with sharp scissors leaving a narrow seam. Turn carefully and iron lightly. Proceed in exactly the same way with the rest of the hearts. Begin stuffing them by filling out the pointed tip first. Continue until you have a soft (not overstuffed) shape. Close the opening by hand. Tie your choice of ribbon to the wreath. You may add embellishments if you wish. Then, with your glue gun stick on the hearts all around the circumference of the wreath. Once dry you can hang it up in your favourite place!