Browsing Category Lifestyle

9 Minimal Waste Ways to Read a Book

Hey everyone,
this one goes out to all the book lovers. I have tried to create an extensive list of resources to satisfy your cravings for reading material. I am personally a big fan of bookstagram. Bloggers who are part of this movement post beautiful shelfies and give great reading recommendations. My problem with this: the temptation to buy the prettiest books immediately and shiny new is immense. So regardless, if you are a book worm that reads hundreds of books a year but also are a minimalist or you are somewhat of a collector and are working on establishing your library, there are options out there for you, that don’t use up too many resources like trees and water.

Temporary / digital books

  1. The public library: This is the best solution in my opinion. You’re supporting the local sharing community and you’re not spending any money. Familiarize yourself with what your library has to offer. Besides the physical books and CDs and DVDs, lots of libraries have an online presence, where you can check out ebooks, audiobooks, and eMagazine. Chances are, the selection is even better than the physical selection and you don’t even have to go to the actual library.
  2. Your friends: I love talking about books with my friends. Find out what they are reading, share your recommendations, and lend each other your books. Depending on your devices and formats, this is even possible with ebooks.
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July Roundup and some links

Hi everyone,
slightly delayed, this is my July round up! It  was a pretty exciting month for me:
  • I was still traveling with my parents but that is going to be a whole other blog post. I went to Yosemite National Park (again), Mill Valley and surrounding area, as well as on some local day trips.
  • It was my birthday! And the mister secretly hijacked my plans and turned my standard backyard BBQ into a fantastic Harry Potter themed party. Our friends made a Quidditch beer pong table, intricate wands, a unicorn cake, and so much more. Unfortunately, I was way too excited to document any of it properly. So here are some crappy Snapchat screenshots: wands unicorn cake and moaning myrtle
  • I went on a pretty intense day hike through the State Park of Nisene Marks in Aptos. We hiked about 8 miles in total and it was totally worth it. I went with a friend I hadn’t seen in ages so we had plenty to catch up on.
    aptos state park
  • I got one decent blog post out. See my first 5 zero waste swaps here
  • I read 1984 by George Orwell, Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman and Sapiens: A brief history of humankind by Professor Yuval Noah Harari. That was some good progress in my reading challenge but there is still a lot to read.
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Sustainability: My first 5 zero-waste swaps

My first five zero-waste swaps

Hi everyone,
I’m so excited to share my first “minimal waste” post with you. I want to address a few things before we get started, though: I am in no way a perfect “zero waster” of even “minimal waster”. I just recently started this journey and thought it would be fun to take you along with me. There are so many awesome zero waste blogs out there that have way more extensive and detailed advice for you than I will ever have. However, I found that these blogs can be overwhelming, especially in the beginning. That’s why I thought, my first baby steps might be interesting for you. Also, these five swaps might not be the first swaps that come to mind. Everyone starts these lists with reusable shopping bags but I wanted to share with you the swaps that came easiest to me maybe even before I really thought in terms of minimal or zero waste. Enjoy!

Swap 1: Bar soap

  • Why is this swap a good idea? First of all, you can avoid the big plastic containers – bar soap can be purchased wrapped in paper or even better, completely unpackaged. Check Lush, Whole Foods, or your local health food store. Secondly, liquid soaps contain a large percentage water but you’re going to add water when you wash your hands anyway. So why do we need water in our soap? Additionally, you have the chance to shop local and be picky when it comes to the ingredients.
  • How did I make the swap? My dad actually initiated this zero waste swap long before I moved out. He was annoyed by the moisturizing effect of liquid soaps and prefers the really clean feeling of bar soaps. So he did his research and started buying bar soaps from a local soap maker. They had so many different ones for different purposes. My mum would always store them in our closets to make our clothes smell nice and fresh.
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Life lately and my new plans (and some Monday links)

Hi everyone,
it’s been awfully quiet around here in the last couple of months. The reason? Life! The life of a PhD student to be more precise. And relationships, and family, and now vacation. I almost completed my first year as a PhD student. The work load will probably continue to get heavier. However, I feel inspired to write again and I hope I can pick up the pieces of this blog again.
However, things around here will change: I have been doing a lot of research on environmental issues and zero waste lifestyle over the past few months and I am hoping to write about that here. Learning and practicing scientific methods every day, I’d like to use that experience to help people who don’t work in science understand environmental and medical publications. Maybe I’ll open a little science category… I am also not traveling as much as I used to but it is still my favorite thing to write about, so I will try to keep it up. I still have so many photos and past trips to talk about.
Let’s hope the motivation and inspiration lasts!!

If you’re curious what I have been up to lately, check out the links below 😃

  • Despite everything going on, I managed to get addicted to the show Girlboss on Netflix and it took me a good 5 episodes to recognize why I recognized the name „nasty gal
  • For some reason, in stressful times, I feel the need to shop. This month I satisfied my shopping craving at thredup.com and online thrift shop. I am actively trying to buy less new clothes to reduce my environmental impact and I wanted a new dress for the Mister’s younger brother’s graduation.
  • This list would be incomplete without a link to my favorite blog Hither&Thither. I stumbled upon a post, where Ashley, the blogger, was writing about the HBO series Girls. Having very mixed feelings about the show, I really enjoyed the discussion with her readers.
  • I was looking into a lot of zero/ minimal waste alternatives this month and I did make a couple of changes (will report back soon). However, the DIY natural deodorant bar didn’t make the list yet this month. I will keep this recipe for future reference though. For now, I got a packaging free deodorant bar from lush.
  • I stumbled upon this article “8 reasons why traveling is good for your health” and I thought it would be really interesting to look into scientific publications related to travel and health. As I said, I’d like to make scientific publications about interesting topics more accessible to my readers.
  • Also, check out my post about conscious clothing to get an idea of what I am planning in the future 🙂
Yours,
Juliet
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Reading Challenge: 10 books to read this year

10 books to read in 2017
Hi everyone,
I am addicted to goodreads.com and I am a big fan of making my list of books I want to read longer and longer. However, grad school usually gets the better of me and I rarely ever finish a book. So this year I decided to participate in the goodreads reading challenge and read a book every month. I am already hopelessly behind but I just started taking advantage of the offers on amazon where you can add the audiobook for a couple dollars to your ebook purchase. That way I managed to sneak in a lot more reading time in my daily routine. To keep me motivated, I picked 10 books from my long reading list that I want to tackle this year. I feel like it is a good mix of young adult, non-fiction, new and classic books. I’m sure there is something on the list for everyone. Enjoy!

My books for 2017:

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Review: My year in travel 2016

Hey everyone,
I am finally back to writing after a few stressful months of getting settled into a new city and a new grad school. Like last year, I’d like to revisit my travels and the memories I have collected during the year of 2016.

New Years in Portugal

In short, we went to a small town close to Porto to visit some old friends for New Years and of course we all explored Porto together.  I really fell in love with this city and could totally imagine living and studying there. I kind of wish I had found out about Porto before my undergrad was over so I could have considered a study abroad period in Portugal. After a few days in the northern region of Portugal, plenty of delicious homecooked food, and some port wine tastings, my travel buddy and I took the train down South to Lisbon to explore the capital for a few days. Lisbon reminded me of San Francisco in so many ways and even though the weather in January was rather mediocre I had a great time and many adventures in this city.
Porto
Porto
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Recipe for German Cinnamon Cookies (Zimtsterne)

[featured photo – Zimtsterne byLiliana FuchsCreative Commons 2.0]

Hi everyone,

I am, unfortunately, a little bit late to the party but here is my part for the holiday recipe week for Anna’s blog parade: I decided to share my mom’s recipe for German cinnamon cookies, called Zimtsterne (literal: cinnamon stars) with you. They can be found in bakeries and at Christmas markets all over Germany and for me Christmas is not really happening without them. So I made an effort to bake at least a small batch this year as I am not going home for Christmas. In Germany, we like to bake using weights not cup measurements, so I tried my best to convert them but the recipe will probably still work out better if you use a kitchen scale and weigh all the ingredients.

Enjoy!

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5 Easy Christmas Card DIYs

[featured photo – Yvonne Heine]

Hi everyone,

this is kind of a different blog post than usually. I am participating in a pre-holiday blog train started by Anna from whenanna.com. We are five bloggers from different niches working together to publish five posts a week related to a certain holiday topic (see schedule at the end). This week’s theme are holiday DIYs.

I just recently moved from Germany to the US, meaning I left my whole family behind and during the holiday season I usually miss them the most. So I decided I would make my own Christmas cards this year and send them to my family. However, grad school keeps me more than busy, so I searched Pinterest for simple and easy ideas. I thought I’d share my favorites with you:

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Review: Yuzen Subscription Box – Sending you a little zen

Hi everyone,

After researching all about natural beauty products and the zero waste movement in the last couple of weeks and months, I decided to get my toes wet in the world of natural beauty products. And what better way to do that than with a subscription box? They bring a selection of carefully curated products right to your doorstep. So I stumbled upon the eco-friendly Yuzen box and decided to test it out. The mission of the Yuzen box is to bring natural and healthy products to you, that allow you to find your little piece of zen in your everyday life. All the items are carefully picked by Jen and Ted, who got their inspiration for this box on their travels through Asia.

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Top 8 Budget Restaurants in London

Top 8 Restaurants in London

[featured photo by Roberto Trombetta – Creative Commons]

Hi everyone,

I am currently a bit busy with my move to Santa Cruz, CA and starting grad school. I didn’t want to skip a week posting here, though. So I asked Kiran from theswindian.com for a little help and her recommendations on budget restaurants in London. Kiran is one of my favourite food bloggers who I met on Twitter (something I didn’t know was possible until recently). She lives in London and blogs about all things food related. Check out her blog 🙂

Now with no further ado, let’s get started with

The Swindian’s 8 favourite budget restaurants in London

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