Jigsaw puzzle in progress - tigers

Home Activities – Jigsaw Puzzles

The pandemic forced the majority of the world to stay at home at some point. The longer the lockdown was, the more boring it felt. Even the nearby park with cute, friendly squirrels wasn’t enough to fill all of my spare time. It felt a bit like long, dark winter evenings, just with considerably more sunshine. One of my favourite time killers in winter are jigsaw puzzles, and it was one of the things I did a lot during lockdown.

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Baked chicken and leek pie with puff pastry

Chicken and Leek Pie

Being in lockdown, I had plenty of time to experiment in the kitchen. One of my favourite recent inventions is this chicken and leek pie. It was something I had on my mind for a long time, but also something I’ve never attempted before – nor anything remotely similar. I had a look online and found a few recipes for a pie of this kind, combined them all, added my personal touch… the results definitely exceeded my expectations.

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Kew Gardens - tall palm trees

Kew Gardens in the Rain

One of my very last trips before coronavirus lockdown was a visit at Kew Gardens, on the 5th of March. There’s a similar place near my home town, and expecting tropical, indoor gardens, I decided to visit Kew Gardens on a gloomy, winter day. Something I was not aware of is that Kew Gardens, as opposed to the similar place in Gliwice, consist of multiple buildings and outdoor spaces. Ouch. Yep, I got completely soaked. Totally worth it! However, I do need to repeat this trip in summer, perhaps after lockdown.

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Very tall, luscious palm trees indoors in Gliwice

Indoor Gardens – Palm House – Palmiarnia, Gliwice, Poland

Even though it’s summer and most days are warm to even hot, I never have enough of high, almost tropical temperatures. The forecast for Wednesday last week was relatively poor (only around 20°C, with possible showers?!), so because summer decided not to come to me that day, I thought I’d go and chase it myself. In the city where I used to study (just a 25-minute train ride from my town), there are indoor tropical gardens – or, as we call it, a palm house (palm trees don’t normally grow here in this climate). I believe it’s a similar place to more popular Kew Gardens in London, though I’m yet to visit those, so I can only guess.

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A painting of a bunch of yellow, blue and green fish

Star Signs – Pisces

This year, I decided to take a look at astrology – an interesting, though controversial subject – and each month examine one star sign and the personality features it allegedly entails. Last month we had a look at Aquarians and – to my surprise – the overwhelming majority of you claimed that the star sign, even if not the most important factor in determining one’s personality, played an important role and often influenced our choices. The characteristics of Aquarian personality seemed to match Aquarian representatives fairly well. I’m curious to see if the trend continues. Today, Pisces take over and they’ll reign until the 20th of March.

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Valentine gift ideas - collage

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

We’re now about to enter the Valentine’s week. Do you celebrate the holiday? And if so, do you exchange gifts with your other half? If the answer is yes but you still haven’t decided what to get this year – I’ve prepared a few ideas! And if you’re one of those cringing at the heart-themed, couples kind of items shown on display of most stores at this time of year – sorry for that! The Valentine cringe will be over in just a few days. 😉

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Heart mandala colouring page

Heart Mandala Colouring Page – Launching Downloadables!

Please forgive me for giving in to the ubiquitous Valentine’s mood – it will soon be over! But before that happens, I’d like to share a few more things. Today, I’m coming with another mandala – heart themed this time. It’s also a great occasion to finally launch a new section on this blog – downloadable resources! I’ve been meaning to do this for ages, and now, having released my Christmas themed book and a few colouring pages, it feels like a good start. So without further ado – here’s what I have for you today!

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Chicken tikka masala served with rice, garnished with fresh coriander and yoghurt

Chicken Tikka Masala

So the America’s leading meteorologist – groundhog Phil – predicted an early spring this year. Phew! I think all of us living in the northern hemisphere and having to deal with snow and frost are relieved to hear that. However, it doesn’t look like spring is about to come within the next few days, sadly. We still have some cold days ahead of us, and what can be better for those occasions than spicy, warming, delicious food? Curry type dishes are my go-to in winter. Today, I’d like to share my recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala!

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A table full of decorated gingerbread cookies

Christmas by Alphe – My Festive Book

Today – the 2nd of February – marks the official end of Christmas in my country’s culture, tightly connected to religious aspect of Christmas (you can read more about our traditions here). This day makes a perfect occasion for my big Christmas-released project to be released for the first time. I’ve gathered all of my Christmas recipes, craft and gift ideas and inspirations that have already been published on this blog, added those that are still yet to be published (that’s right, I didn’t manage to post all of my Christmas adventures in December and had to schedule some for 2019) and arranged them all into a festive book. It took a lot of work, but it’s finally ready and available to download right now, for free, for everyone!

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