30 December 2010

New Year's resolutions for 2011


  • First of all, I will NOT buy things that I don't need and spend unnecessary amount of cash on eating out, going to pubs and cinemas or buying new books. Instead will make my lunch at home or use university canteen, make my tea and coffee at home and invite friends to our place and have some fun there. I will also focus on reading books from the library or those that I bought and haven't read yet.
  • I will try to eat in a healthy way - more muesli, oatmeal, corn flakes and yogurt for breakfast, pasta and salads for lunch and fruits for dinner.
  • I will learn to cook a few new meals, after all, the Internet is full of recipes.
  • I will try listing and renewing on Etsy more often and blog at least a few times a month.
  • I will go to work more often too. Teaching English is a good way to earn some extra money and part-time jobs in supermarkets are a pain, but I could manage to sacrifice one day a week.
  • I will spend more time with my friends. They can visit me and sleep over instead of going out and we can enjoy our time together without spending too much money.
  • I will spend my lonely evenings by studying and work on my thesis on weekdays.
  • I will (actually I MUST) do something to find my inner balance - yoga, stretching, sports, good food and anything that makes me happy and makes me feel like I am having a good time, I am doing well and am a worthy person who has no reason to be depressed.
  • I will do my best to arrange a studying stay somewhere abroad to get more experience.
  • I will spend less time on Facebook. Instead of staring into the PC screen during my moments of boredom, I will always have a book to read or a bracelet to make at hand, so that I use my free time effectively.
  • Similarly, I will STOP spying on people on Facebook! I know that walls are public space, but I don't need to watch it all the time. In the meantime, I can have a life.
Oh wow, there are so many of them! I am already looking forward to 2011 and all those wonderful days that I am going to have!

Looking back at 2010

It seems like it was just yesterday that I was sitting on my bed in my parents' flat and writing my New Year's resolutions blog post. One more year has passed, in which so many things have happened, many things changed and many remained the same. And once again I am sitting here, in the same room on the same bed (covered with blanket, sipping a hot mint tea and watching the snowflakes dance around my window) and thinking about my plans for the following year. Of course I have some more resolutions, but first let's see how I kept the old ones from the last year.

Next New Year will be celebrated at a party, preferably one where you have to be dressed in funny clothes, not in a sit-at-home-and-watch-TV style.
  • Done! I am still at my parents, but tonight I am leaving back to Prague to celebrate the new year with a couple of friends in a flat that we rent together. The fancy costumes have been rejected by most of people who agreed to come, but still - it's a great improvement compared to last year.
I will go to freediving trainings with a little bit less reluctance (even though it is cold outside and it takes me 50 minutes to get ther and then I return home at 10:30 with still wet hair and lots of wet stuff that needs to be hung somewhere, so I wake everyone up)
  • Well, there were no trainings in summer and I was ill most of the winter time. I also paid for a few trainings that I wasn't able to get to in the end, because of lectures or general tiredness. After being at the uni for eleven hours, spending three more hours away from home because of training feels stupid and unbearable too. So for the next year - plan things better. Als the wet stuff problem has been sorted when I moved away from the dorms and rented an apartment with a proper bathroom or enough space on the floor to let things air-dry.
Similarly, will put more enthusiasm into studying, going to work and shopping for clothes.
  • Partially done. Studying went fine after all, I finished a bachelor's degree and graduated this December. I also did quite a lot of work on my master's thesis already and am quite satisfied with myself. It could be better with work, money is always good. As for clothes, I can get myself everything except shoes and trousers, shopping for which I really hate - a thing that I might never overcome.
Will take up one of the following: swimming, yoga, aqua-aerobic, belly dancing.
  • Did go swimming and did yoga a few times. A friend of mine who does belly dancing made me whirl my hips for about three minutes - does that count???
Will NOT cut my hair.
  • I did, but only for maintenance. Still expecting it to grow into Indian princess/mermaid/forrest fairy length.
Will come to visit my parents and old friends more often.
  • I spent an unusual lot of time here in summer, not so much in the fall and almost nothing except one week during Christmas in winter. But I feel that its been enough.
Will save some more money, but also let myself enjoy what I earn in a sensible way (such as traveling to visit my parents and old friends)
  • I have not saved up much. At least nothing is left of what I had, but everything was spent on travelling during summer.(See my summer holidays post if you'd like to know more)
I will take greater care of my pets (snails, stick insects) and finally will take my tortoise to the vet after she wakes up in spring.
  • I am sorry to announce that those particular stick insects are no longer among us. However, a friend forced me to take care of about hundred newborn ones, so there are still some sticks running around my place. The snails have got a new 130 litred big plastic tank in which they live and thrive and have laid approximately 400 eggs this year.
  • Also the tortoise did not wake up in spring, I got to know just when I was getting everything ready to take her to Prague. She died after 20 years that we had her and she has a little grave in the garden at out cottage in eastern Slovakia. I was thinking about getting a new one immediately, but then changed my mind, because I know I wouldn't be able to take care of her with all the traveling that I am planning to do.
After all, the resolutions are more or less guidelines, not strict rules. They describe the things we wish we changed and writing them down gives us the opportunity to look back at what happened, what we have and haven't done and how our opinions have changed. I can see myself changing very fast and every year I learn something new about myself and the world that I live in and I believe it helps me lead a happier and more balanced life.

24 December 2010

Christmas

•.¸*•.¸♥¸.•*´¸.•*´*•.¸*•.¸♥¸.•*´¸.•*´*•.¸*•.¸♥¸.•*´¸.•

Dear Etsians, blog followers and others who happened to find this blog by chance: I wish you all a happy and joyful Christmas time spent with those who you love the most.


This is a picture from my parents' dining room in Košice, Slovakia, where I am spending Christmas every year. "Veselé Vianoce" means Merry Christmas in Slovak.

Slovakia has got many Christmas traditions that are different from the ones in the UK or the US. We have a Christmas tree, we make Christmas cakes etc., but the meal we eat for dinner on 24th December is different. We usually have a soup to start - it is made with sour cabbage, mushrooms and pieces of smoked sausage in it. The main course is a fish - traditionally carp - with potato salad or just potatoes.
According to another tradition, we shouldn't eat all day until dinner. It is said that if you keep this, you will see a golden pig in the evening. So ... it is nine minutes after noon and I am already struggling :)

Keeping a scale of a carp under the tablecloth should bring you money in the following year.

However, on of the best traditions of all is the one which says that presents are opened right after the dinner is finished! Which means I will get to see what I got tonight!! I can't wait!!!


•*(¸.•*´♥`*•.¸)`*••*(¸.•*´♥`*•.¸)`*••*(¸.•*´♥`*•.¸)`*•

04 December 2010

Giving succulents a second chance

We did a bit of a Christmas shopping for my Mum in IKEA today and almost right next to cash desk with the discounted items, there were many plants for really bargain prices with a sign „try to give them a chance for 5 CZK“. Most of them were Cyclamen, but I found two Crassula succulent plants for only 15 Crowns (something less than 1$), which I felt so sorry for that I decided to buy them. I have been growing succulents since I was fifteen, so I think I might succeed. Both of them look like they were either not watered for a very very long time or froze, maybe both. I am letting them soak up a bit of water right now and the soil will be replaced in the next few days. I think they will be getting along well with the little Christmas lemons when they start growing :-)

Christmas lemons

While cutting lemons into drinks at last week’s pre-Christmas party in our apartment, I noticed that they are full of seeds and I just thought: ”Hey, it would be great to have our own little lemon trees!” I used to grow some citrus plants before, but none of them survived until presence, so maybe these ones will be more successful. I planted them in a nice red flower pot and I can’t wait to watch them as they sprout. If they start growing, I plan to write more posts about how they are doing. Maybe in a few years, we can pick the Christmas party lemons from our own tree : ) .

Crochet ride!


This is something I have to share! Me and my parents came across this wonderful actual-size crocheted car in a gallery yard in Prague when we walked by the river, actually it waz quite some time ago, but I only got to blogging about it now. It was crocheted and stretched on a metallic construction and soaked in something to keep the shape and I loved the details – the wheels, the mirrors, it had everything like a real car has :) It's amazing what some people can make!

21 November 2010

Bath and Beauty / Kitchen items

The first of my bathroom items is here! This is a crocheted washcloth made of 100% cotton yarn. It is great for washing body and face, remowing make-up with, cleaning the dishes of wiping surfaces. I have much more in stock, so I will be taking photos regularly and listing and listing. Little facial scrubbies are on their way too!

Recycled tags

A few months ago, my mum brought a few very big envelopes from work and I decided to turn them into "100% cotton" tags for my bathroom cotton items that I am going to make for my Etsy shop. It was very easy - I cut them in halves and printed the text on them, then cut the rectangular tags out and punched a hole for the string to go through. Although it is not visible from the photos, there is a little fish-shaped hole punched on the further end of a tag.


These are the finished tags on my newest product - facial scrubbies or make-up removal pads. There will certainly be more of them in differnet colours accompanyied by crocheted washcloths.

26 October 2010

The fall


Usually when I think about the fall, I imagine the cold and dark mornings, unpleasant rain and wind and sleepy weather that makes you want to stay in bed all day,curled up in blankets with a cup of hot tea and some biscuits. Luckily, being a student and having quite a lot of things to read (which can be comfortably donw in bed) I can afford it, but I am also thankful to have some duties which I cannot miss out and which prevent me from turning into a complete sofa potato (in this case a bed potato). And on the other side, when the sky clears up a bit and the wind stops, fall turns out to be a very nice and colourful season. This picture was taken week during a walk along the Vltava riverbank.

24 October 2010

Summer 2010 flashbacks

In spite of promising myself that I will blog more, I have posted nothing about my summer holidays so far. However, now that the weather is dark and cold and everything is so lazy, sleepy and depressing, I think it’s the right time for a few flashbacks:)
To be honest, I think this has been one of the best summers of my life, probably because I have finished a university degree and could go and enjoy my summer with a clear head, for the first time after three years. After visiting my parents for almost three weeks, I went to an amazing boat trip around Sardinia and Corsica for a week. We had a great time on a sea, only partially disturbed by little vertigos and occassional sea-sickness, but the freediving and snorchelling was perfect and being on a boat was more enjoyable that I have originally thought.
Pictures from the boat trip around Sardinia and Corsica
 

After I came back to Prague, I quickly unpacked, washed the clothes and repacked them for another trip, this time to Croatian island Brač, where I have already been twice on a marine biology field trip with my university supervisors. This was mostly boring, because it was incredibly hot and I didn’t have anything enjoyable to do. By the end of the trip a big storm came and brought cooler weather, but also cooled down the water in the sea, so I spent most of the time out of it.
a few photos from Croatia
 
All these wonderful things seem to be so far away now, the weather is dull and cold, the overall atmosphere is sad compared to what I just wrote about and I keep dreaming about the ocean and visiting new places... Well, I think it is time I started saving up for summer 2011!

06 August 2010

The new evening reading tradition

Having moved to a new place I realized that I have way too many books that I have bought, but never really got to reading them - from Penguin classics that I bought in the UK four years ago to new books which caught my attention in a bookstore and books that I planned to read for lectures, but I only started and didn't finish. So I thought it would be a good thing to set up a tradition of reading a book every night before I go to sleep. That gives me something to think of right before I fal asleep and also makes me feel like the money that I spent on books wasn't entirely wasted.



I also carry a book in my backpack wherever I go and read it while travelling by tram or the underground - I spend at least 20 minutes in public transport every day and by reading, the time is spent more effectively. So my transformation into well-educated superintelligent nerdy individual has begun! And when I read all of my books, I will go to my parents and bring another bunch of unread sad books that are waiting on a shelf!

01 August 2010

Flea market in Prague


This Saturday (31st July),there was a flea market in Naměstí míru in Prague. It is a square with church in the middle and from early morning the area in front of the church was covered with shops selling all sorts of different stuff – vintage, clothing, accessories, jewelry, kitchen supplies, toys, lavender sachets and second hand and handmade goods – and owned by all sorts of people.


Many of them only had things on the floor, but the collection of things was very wide. It was the first time that I came across an event like this in Prague (thanks to being a member of "Creative Prague" group on Facebook). If I had more items, I would seriously consider making my own display and joining in (well, maybe next year!).

31 July 2010

Morning bracelet featured in a treasury

A blue and white striped bracelet that I listed this morning has surprisingly made it to one of the treasuries on Etsy.com ! It was created by sunshineartdesign and its is called "Striped all day". Many other striped items are featured too. Thank you very much!

24 July 2010

♥FREE♥SHIPPING♥

Finally, it is here! From this hour on, sillylittlesheep is offering a free shipping to all destinations. No matter how many items you purchase and were in the world you live, the shipping fee is 0.00 in all currencies! ♥

22 July 2010

What I learnt from custom order

Some time ago, I received a convo on Etsy, asking me if I could make a bracelet with letters on it. The girl who wanted it was a U2 fan and wanted to have a bracelet with the name of the band on it. I was very busy with finishing my degree at that time, so I suggested some other sellers she might want to ask. However, to my great surprise, she came back a few weeks later asking me if I am not busy any more and if I could make it. Being on holiday and having nothing better to do, I started making a bracelet that she requested, realizing not only that knotting writings is not as difficult as I have originally thought but also that I really enoyed the process of making it. Moreover, she seemed very happy with it too, so I couldn't be more satisfied.

Now my head is overflowing with ideas for this new style of bracelets - letters, numbers and even pictures can be created using this technique of weaving and I can't wait to start making all of those. I even bought special squared notebook for drawing my ideas. This way a simple custom order made me learn something new, something that I would have never wanted to learn by myself. Thank you!

12 July 2010

A weekend for taking pictures


I spent this weekend at our family cottage in the east of Slovakia with my parents. Because the weather was hot and sunny, I took my bracelets and my old digital camera with me and made 146 pictures of new items, ready to be listed in my Etsy shop. Today, I am continuing by sorting out and editing (cutting, cropping) my pictures and I have already listed one new bracelet and plan to list twice a day this week, if it is possible.


( these bracelets are photographed and ready to be listed in SillyLittleSheep's Etsy shop during the following week )

08 July 2010

The OIL SPILL - how we all can help

Living in a flat without television means that I am often completely out of touch with the world causes. Now I am on holiday at my parents place and I have just watched CNN's Eco Solutions dedicated to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Immediately, just like Lisa Simpson in one of The Simpsons episode, I started imagining myself helping there, washing all those animals and helping the environment which really needs help right now. However, not only I cannot travel there, I also have no money of my own to donate. Luckily, I found out (through a link given at the end of Eco Solutions) that there are several ways how you can help even if you cannot get to the Gulf of Mexico in person.



Also, the NWF (national Wildlife Federation) has created several banners which you can embed into your blogs and websites to attract the attention of people who actually can donate, because they have money, but wouldn't be searching for the ways to do it themselves. These banners are eye-catching and redirect you right to the website, where you can choose how you want to help.
There is also a campaign going on to spread the word via social networks on the Internet - and that's something that EACH ONE OF US can do! On this site you can find the aforementioned banners.

06 July 2010

The knotting therapy

The last month of the academic year was sort of rough for me - a lot of stress about defending my thesis, passing exams and interview to be able to continue in my studies etc. And now, when everything is over, I cannot help it but feel depressed. I must admit that I really was going totally out of control in the past few weeks, which meant that not only I have suffered, but also the closest people around me who had to deal with me and tried to talk me out of it every single day.
Now I am at my parents place in Slovakia again, having a little break, being taken care of and cooked to and also knotting like crazy! Even during exams I discovered that making bracelets helps my mood - playing with colours, while I can clear the bad stuff from my mind and create something pretty. And not only that, but also the possibility of selling it one day to earn money, which makes me feel like I'm actually doing something. Also it is an easy thing to do, I was concentrating on the easier patterns, so it cannot happen that I would get it wrong and get even more sad about how useless I am. So making bracelets is now both useful and practical :-}

13 May 2010

Inspired by Nature - Lavender


For the last two years, I have been going on holiday to a Croatian island called Brač. Living in a camp, with a sea and marine life only a few minutes walk away and beautiful white dusty paths on the other side of the camp, it has become a wonderful place for me to relax and explore. Although the landscape seems to be dry and inhospitable, there is a lot of life going on - insects, spiders and reptiles are the creatures you can come across most often and their colours and shapes are often very impressive. We found a little lavender meadow nearby, with rocky walls and olive trees growing around it, which inspired me to make this bracelet. The violet flowers of lavender look outstanding on the dry-looking green-greyish backround and I think that making my bracelets inspired by nature is a good way to show how much I actually adore it.

Here is the link to the etsy listing of this bracelet: http://www.etsy.com/listing/46834394/lavender-coloured-friendship-bracelet

08 May 2010

My "new" table

Studying far away from home brings some unique experiences, such as living in a students' home, with it. Sometimes, as you can see in the picture on the left, the furniture is quite old
and the students who lived here before us have not been really nice to it. This desk has lost the top layer of lacquer, so the wood it is made of was bare and any sort of dirt really got into it... So I told myself I could cover it with something. I had some really good paper from my mother, the sort that cannot get wet, or at least not easily, so I used some of it together with sellotape, spent a little time on it and made the table look more bearable. I know it's got fruits on it and it is a little bit too childish and not very durable, but better than nothing and it will last long enough until I move away (which may be as soon as in a few months' time). I also put som colourful pictures from home and holidays on the notice board together with my handmade calendar and now I have a nice and colourful place to work in :)

Letters . . .

I don’t know how about other people, but I LOVE writing letters... I actually enjoy receiving them more, but to get some, you need to send some . . . so I like writing them as well. Because of writing my final thesis for bachelor’s degree, I haven’t had time or will to keep in touch with my old friends or family, but once it was finished and I had a dorm all for myself, I had a lovely evening of drinking tea, eating muffins and writing letters. I managed to write three, to three different countries and I was so happy about it! I know it’s old-fashioned and slow, but that’s why I like it so much! Now all I have to do is sit and do my own work and wait for the replies :)

02 May 2010

Over 2000 visits!!!

I looked at the counter today and I couldn't believe my eyes!!! Over 2000 visits! WOW! I know I have had this blog for a very long time, but still, it makes me feel like it must really be good when so many people have come to look at it (or maybe I only promote it too much in Etsy forums??). Thank you all for following this blog, I hope it was worth reading. x

26 April 2010

Spring trip to Lausanne

Last week, me and my friend have made a road trip from Prague (Czech republic) to Lausanne (Switzerland) to attend a freediving pool competition. Even though we did not achieve any great results (well, sometimes that happens too!), we had a great time and I am glad that we went there. Lausanne is a wonderful city and although we explored it without a guide or much information about it, we have seen a lot of nice things, taken some nice pictures and had a LOT of fun! :)


I admired almost everything - from architecture and little gardening details to the natural beauties such as Lac Léman and the Alps. The only problem was that most people spoke French rather than English, but in the end it did not really matter. (A little bit of knowledge of German helped us on the way back when we have taken a "tiny" 200km detour thanks to my navigation abilities and had to ask a random man working in a garage to show us the way)

26 March 2010

Arachnophobia always hits one minute too late

As I walked from the pub after the lecture last night, only at about 9.15 p.m.(and of course have not drank any alcohol!), I met an incredible spring wildlife collection of animals. Last few days have been very warm and seems like the little creatures noticed it even better than humans. As I walked around the hospital, I noticed a HUGE (5 cm) spider on the wall, which I must have photographed with my phone,of course, having the true scientific instincts, but as soon as I walked away I thought: "Ewwwww!!! Spider, yikes!!!" Well, arachnophobia always hits one minute too late.. Under it on the floor sat a little toad, watching me approach with very angry expression in its eyes, which turned even more angry when I tried to cuddle it a bit. The froggie bent its head down, which was probably to make its back look bigger and scarier (but still about the same size as the scary spider), so I let it be. Soon the "Albertov" stairs will be covered in toads, searching for the right partner on their way to one of the little lakes nearby. The next animals that I met were little black bugs walking across the pavement and the most suprising discovery was a SLUG on the inside of my window,which I discovered when I wanted to get a bit of fresh air into the room before I go to bed. I have no idea how it climbed to the 5th floor, but maybe we brought it in with some flowers that we have on the window (in which case I don't understand why it hasn't come out earlier). Seems to me that summer is approaching with incredible speed and I can't wait to see what other new creatures will move into our home :)

25 March 2010

Orange "Christmas" bracelet online!!

So... another very very slow day at work. I work as a photocopy service in the library. I did not have much to do today, so I tried to work on my coursework and also rediscovered "The Sims" on my PC, so now I am working on a house and career or an imaginary character as well as mine... I will have to stop soon, because it keeps distracting me too much :)
Yesterday, I listed another one of the bracelets that I started making during Christmas holiday. I finished it many days ago,but only got to photographing it last week. It is orange and bright, a perfect accessory for colourful summer clothes.

The listing is available at this address http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=43393341

12 March 2010

Blanket-murderers anti-handmade rodents

Something more than a month ago I adopted a lovely rat couple, both males, who were supposed to be used as a snake food after the series of behavioural experiments were finished on them at the Science Academy. Though lovely, always curious and very interesting, we have been through all possible problems with them - from the noise they make at night to their fights over who will be the dominant one.


Because the cage they live in is a bit small, I let them walk around the room every night to get some exercise. They only walk on the armchair, play with a pillow and make a nest in a blanket that covers the chair, walk on the radiator, then return to the cage and so on. BUT! Today I woke up and had a look at them and I was terified! The edge of blanket was pulled inside and holes were bitten into it at several places in such a way, that I cannot repair it now. Apparently, after their evening games with the blanket I left it too close to the cage so they could reach it with their teeth and tried to pull it in to continue playing with it.

Well, this is what happens when a handmade item meets with pets of anti-handmade persuasion. The best idea that I got was to wash it and - after it dries - try to get as much undamaged yarn from it as possible... I know it is their nature to bite things, but I crocheted the blanket during the last year of high-school and it has taken me several months and I was really happy when I finished it and loved it... And all of that was destroyed during one night.

09 January 2010

Orange bracelet online

The first of my creations from Christmas holiday is already at http://sillylittlesheep.etsy.com


In the next few days I would like to take photographs of other finished bracelets and list them as soon as possible.
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