Wellness Wednesday: Vitamins


I’m going to start this post off with a disclaimer that I am not a professional, I am not a dietician, or nutritionist, nor a doctor of any sort. But I did minor in health in university, and I have a pretty big interest and general wealth of knowledge that I have collected concerning health over the years. 

Next I’m also going to say that I don’t really do the ‘vitamin thing’, nor do I believe that people need to take vitamins, and that they mostly just result in expensive pee, BUT that being said- I have been taking a vitamin lately, and I do notice that it is doing some good things!

(the very legit- medicine like bottle)

This is the vitamin supplement that i am taking right now. It is a liquid form, and surprisingly it tastes fine- and I am really bad at taking any liquid medicines so that is saying something- You keep it in the fridge and it is supposed to be made will all the best stuff in Germany.

(the box it comes in)

I can honestly say that I did not seek this out- my mom bought it for me- and I am taking it mom! – BUT I do like it so far, and most importantly, in amongst all the other wonderful things, it has iron supplements, which are helpful to the anemic person that I am.

Since taking this- I notice that I haven’t been sick for quite a while *knocks on wood repeatedly*, which I will mostly attribute to the iron supplement, and I have also noticed that my nails have been a little nicer- more firm and less prone to tearing and peeling like usual. 

Whether this is a result of the vitamins or not, I don’t really know, I’m sure it can’t hurt, and it very well might be having these good effects. So if you are feeling in need of taking vitamin supplements- I would recommend this one!

So that is my first ‘Wellness Wednesday’! I hope you like it- these will be mostly little short ‘what I do in my life to be well’ sort of things, and what I find works for me. 🙂

Hope you are having a healthy Wednesday!

xo erin

SPIDER ON MY HAND!!- Beading DIY


I have been beading obsessed over the holidays- partly since it is one of the only crafty things that I specifically brought home with me, but also because the holidays always seem to draw me toward sparkly and pretty things- let’s be honest that is all year round.

So I thought I would share my favs with you- starting with my absolute favourite, which is this spider bracelet:

The only spider that I will allow on my hand, as I am a mild arachnophobe.

It was a little tricky to make- but since I know that the folk of the internet are very crafty, here is how I did it- if you are in a DIY kinda mood-

So first I picked my beads that I wanted for the head and the big bulbous body- I freak myself out thinking about that..

And put them on a headpin, with a little end bead, leaving some space between them to attach the legs, then I cut the headpin to size and folded over the end to secure it.

Then pick out what you want for your legs: try to make them so that they are fine at the tips, then go to a small join, slim again, then a bigger joint bead, then slim down again so that they can attach to the body really close together. Here are three of the legs laid out. – Also they will all be ending in a jump ring so they can attach to the chain around the back.

Then, what I did, was string them all together on a very fine continuous wire. So I started the wire by going through the large body bead (with the loose end sticking out the back to be wrapped around the head pin and then trapped under the body bead to be secured). Then I strung the beads for the first leg- wrapping the wire around the jump ring, then going back through all the beads, leaving the wire back at the headpin, wrapping it around a couple of times before doing the next leg.

I’m very sorry if this is confusing, it was hard to take descriptive pictures, and I feel like I am being a bit long winded with my explanation- but alas, what can you do?

So once you have done all eight legs (OMG why do spiders have to have so many legs) then you are going to want to attach the chains to make it into a bracelet. So you will want to measure your wrist, then measure across your spider- to find out how much chain you will need to make it around the back of your wrist, of course leaving a little extra so that you can comfortable move your hand.

So when you have these measurements- cut three pieces of equal length chain (for each side), attaching all together at one end to a lobster clasp, and conversely on the other side converging to a ring on which you will clasp your lobster clasp… – although you could use any clasp/closure type that you want for this- Then you will connect the other end of those chains to the jump rings at the end of the bottom three legs from one side, doing the same to the other side with the other half of chains.

  Then once you have that done, and you secure it around your wrist- you will want to stretch the remaining two front legs up your hand, then measure a length of chain that (with wiggle room) reaches from one leg, around your ring and middle finger and to the other front leg.

You should end up with this:

Make sure that you leave a fair amount of extra chain for the one going around your fingers, because this distance will fluctuate a lot as you open and close your hand- and you don’t want to put too much strain on the poor guys arms!

Also- if you have any questions about how to make this or if anything was unclear feel free to ask away!

Meanwhile, as I was toiling away at my little spider friend, my sister was busy at work making gorgeous things like:

and

Though I can claim credit for the one in the middle (that my sister refers to as ‘the baby blanket bracelet’).
I also made these earrings, inspired by New Year’s fireworks

Overall I would say that it was a very productive afternoon of beading!!

Hope you all had creative holidays and that you are finding ways of keeping creative in the busy New Year!!

xo erin

Soup Sunday: Spicy Chili


This Soup Sunday is CHILI!!

I love chili- and this is a super spicy chili. Nice for those -23 C days, when you need both a steaming & spicy bowl of delicious dinner! Not to mention a super quick and low mess recipe. This recipe is all made in one soup pot, so there is very minimal clean up, and it can be made start to finish in about 40 minutes. Not to mention it is super cheap, comprising of mostly ground beef and canned foods. 🙂 Enjoy!

Chili

1 1/2 lb ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
chili pepper to taste (optional) – I used about 2″ of a chili pepper minced
2 cloves of garlic

1/2 cup of chili powder

1 large can of whole italian tomatoes
2 cans of your favourite beans (I used black beans and red kidney beans) – drained 
1- 1 1/2 cup of vegetable cocktail or tomato juice (depending on how thick your chili is
salt and pepper to taste 

In the bottom of your soup pot, fry the beef onion, peppers and garlic, until the meat is browned and the onion is translucent. Then add your chili powder, coating the meat.





Now add your whole italian tomatoes (which are much nicer and thicker than your regular whole tomatoes!- I love them)

And add your beans and vegetable cocktail. Somehow under the light these tomatoes look a little fluorescent.. but I promise they are normal.. 

Mix that all together, breaking up the whole tomatoes with your soup spoon. Let it all cook together for 20-30 minutes, breaking down the tomatoes and letting the flavours infuse together. Add salt and pepper to taste – I generally add quite a bit of salt, and I like this a little on the salty side.





And Voila! you have a delicious, spicy – one pot meal! Of course you could serve this with a quesadilla and it would be perfect, or maybe the cornmeal muffins that I made on another Soup Sunday. 





I was a little lazy this Sunday and I just enjoyed a solo bowl of this spicy chili with a piece of cheddar cheese on the side. 

Hope you are all having wonderful Sunday’s!

xo erin

New Year’s Favs & Resolutions for 2014


What is not to love about New Years Eve? 

This picture was from last New Year’s, which I was fortunate enough to spend in Barcelona, Spain- fancy-shmancy I know! Look at me just dripping in festivness!!

This year was more typical:


Spent with a couple of close friends: scattegories, sparklers, and more than a couple shots- really my fav way to spend any evening, but New Year’s in particular 🙂 

I got thinking about what I like so much about New Year’s this year (or rather last year ha ha…)

and here are my TOP 5 FAVS about New Year’s!

#1 Shrimp rings with the horseradish tomato sauce (most delicious thing ever put together)

#2 Over the top glitter being a 100% legitimate make-up look for the night

#3 Sparklers / Fireworks / Confetti explosions 

#4 Champagne (or shots- depending on how classy you’re feeling that night)

AND.. #5 Resolutions— 

This year, instead of making my usual vague and overachieving resolutions, I have decided to make them a little more specific and a little more achievable. And the resolution I finally landed on was all about creativity and this blog in particular. 

So without further adieu … I resolve to:

Post a minimum of 3 times a week to this blog- with possible increases to daily blogging in the future (but let’s not be too hasty yet..). 

One of these posts will be my fixed feature of ‘Soup Sunday’ which will soon become ‘Supper Sunday’ as I am actually starting to see the end of all the soups I know how to make…

The second post will be a new feature ‘Wellness Wednesday‘ (that’s a working title..) because I’m actually really into all things health (having a psych/health degree) and I am always asked by my friends about my diet, motivation & positivity, and other fitness and wellness tips – so that will be a sort of ‘living your best healthy life’ kind of thing. Not to mention I have slightly fallen off the health bandwagon and this will hopefully encourage me to jump back on it! 

Then on top of those two fixed posts, I will post a minimum of one creative post per week– whether it be a sewing project, a DIY, crochet, beading, possibly make-up tutorial (?)- anything creative! 

Then after all of those minimum 3 three posts, I will try to post more things like outings, OOTD, or other tag-style things like ‘my favourites’ or hauls. 

So I am anticipating a hectic schedule for myself this 2014, and hopefully this blog will give me the motivation I need to get all of that done- and possibly build my little community on here! 

Looking forward to the upcoming Sewing and Life Adventures of Emerald Erin: 2014!! <3

xo erin

Soup Sunday: Rich Turkey Stew


You are all about to learn what I do with all of my Christmas leftovers. Turkey Stew. A rich and delicious stew so full of flavour and full of all my leftovers from the big dinner! 

This is- like all of my other recipes- very flexible, and I generally just use everything that I had for Christmas dinner that is still leftover.

Turkey Stew

For the stock:

bones from your turkey (I just take all the meat off the carcass – everything else is left for the stock- this year we had a 14 lb bird)
(also if you like you can roast the bones for 30 minutes in the oven before you boil them for more flavour)
1 large carrot cut in large pieces
1 large onion cut in large pieces
1 tbsp dried rosemary
2 tbsp black pepper corns
enough water to leave only 1-2″ of the turkey not submerged  (approx. 8 cups)

Place all of the above into a large stock pot. I just got this lovely Le Creuset 6.7 L round french oven for my mom for Christmas- and this was the first soup it has seen!

Boil away for 20 minutes covered, and 10 minutes uncovered (approximately). 

Then strain away all the bones and vegetables, leaving a delicious rich stock.

Now to Soup:


1-2 cups of leftover mashed potatoes 
1 or less cups of leftover turkey gravy
1 1/2 cup leftover cooked carrots or cook them in the microwave quick
1 1/2 cup of brussels sprouts halved or quartered
1 cup of leftover corn
2 1/2 cups of leftover turkey broken into bite-sized pieces 
salt / pepper / seasonings to taste 

– you can pretty much put any leftover veggies you have into this- or just your favourites-

Add the mashed potatoes and the gravy into the stock, mixing it all in until it blends in with the stock- this will make your stock SUPER thick, rich and delicious, then add all the veggies and turkey.

Then, the most important step, taste your soup, add the salt, pepper and seasonings until it tastes just how you like your soup to taste- add a little, taste, assess, add more or stop. I used this for seasoning because my mom got it for Christmas and it was there.

Then serve your piping hot and delicious soup to all of your family, who hopefully isn’t too sick of turkey to appreciate your lovely soup!

I served mine with a cheese quesadilla- not traditional, but so delicious!

What do you like to do with your Christmas leftovers? Hope you are all still basking in your Christmas chocolate and looking forward to New Years!

xo erin 

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