Our house is….years old

I’ve always knew our house is pretty old. Even in our hands it became young again, I knew it has an interesting life behind its walls and stories from the past.

I’ve always knew there were people who were born there, who probably died. And today I’ve found it.

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Our house is 119 years old and it will be 120 next year, in March the 21st.

wow!

I am sure now that I’m gonna see it differently. With great respect, admiration and love. Especially that it has such a “life experience”, it was “born” in the times when Transylvania was not even a part of Romania (1895) and it was a piece of Habsburgic Empire. And most of all it managed to go through 2 world wars and communist times.

Wow! Wow!

The garden grew beautifully in 5 months (Before and After pictures)

There are a few cold days around here and, suddenly, it feels like fall. Now, there are no autumn signs yet, despite the red, red cherry tomatoes, but I think I sensed some grape’s aroma lingering around the joyful garden.

The fall is coming and I almost feel the autumn’s melancholy I’ve always felt around this time of the year. And because of the cold nights and days that are going to come, I almost feel sorry for our garden. For all the annuals, the young sour cherry tree, for the green, green grass. They are going to experience some tough days, but only to come back again, next year full with spring energy.

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Despite the pretty cold morning, I stayed in the garden today. With my bare feet. To feel the earth (and eventually become sick :))))), the smooth cold. And I thought of the garden, the blooming flowers around and all the beauties this great nature brought this year into our lives.

It’s been 5 months. Only. Since we started to labor the soil, and since we seeded the first seeds. Since then, the garden grew up, little by little, gave us vegetables  – potatoes, radishes, bell peppers, chilly, tomatoes, onion, garlic, cucumbers, and now goji and raspberries – grass to cut and lots of flowers and I’m so glad to see how beautiful some of the perennials grew up.

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For the next year I’m expecting bigger lavenders, sage and roses, stronger glycine and fig tree. I also have in mind to take some visits to the stores to buy some bulbs I’m gonna plant them these days to bloom next spring. Like tulips and daffodils. I want to buy as much bulbs as possible to make sure next year they’ll give us lots, lots of joy.

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It’s been 5 months since we started to work the soil and 6 since we created space in the yard for our tiny garden. But I let you see everything and all the stages through the pictures’ eyes.

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Chania (Crete Island), a great source of inspiration

A huge and beautiful surprise was the northern town of Crete Island, Chania, for us. What made us fall in love with this place, watered by the salty Mediterranean Sea, was the love of life and the easiness you can find on locals. I like Greeks, a lot, especially because they don’t seem to hurry all the time, are great in the kitchen and love life.

19(Chania, the old venetian harbor)

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What I really liked about the people in Chania is their incredible creativity, and a sense of color and art you can find all over the city, especially in the old town.

24(Crete loves olive trees and you can find them all over the place. Even near doors)

6(This is actually an art small shop. In the back you could find a surprise: a tiny terrace garden)

3(beautiful decoration near a door on a narrow street)

8(This taverna has a boat’s piece as a firm sign. creative, isn’t it?)

9(circle – chair – small table on a street)

5(euro pallets for flower holders)

7(the entrance on a gift shop)

1(travelers table – and chairs :))

10(tiny street, tiny shop)

11(one of the narrowest restaurant’s terrace. in the “middle” of the street)

12(the narrowest street terrace :))

15(Turkish traces )

14(entrance details)

13(plants and flowers everywhere)

Playing with our new (old) chair :D

It happened to me, sometimes, to look to the pictures took in some houses and think. WOW THAT’S WEIRD……I bet you’re gonna think the same way when you’ll see how the inspiration hit me this morning.

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Don’t get scared, yet, cause what you see is only temporary. Anyway, Laurentiu asked me already: “What if I want to sit on that chair?” “You just remove the city”, I answered.

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Yeah, we’re talking here about a city, OUR mini city who’s sitting on the chair we’ve bought 3 days ago (pictures HERE). An entire city on a tiny stool? But the stool is for people’s butts, you’ll say, not cities. Yes, they are and a chair made up like this may seem a little bit strange, but my point here is that you, me, us all have to be bold when we decorate our homes. Why wondering what people might think of your funny book shelf or about your strange chair or table? If you like it, just take it, or if a weird idea sparks into your head just go for it. Your house must represent yourself not some furniture catalog.

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and you know what? I really like how my beloved city looks like on that peachy pinky chair… I think it’s funny, unusual and this is exactly what I’m looking for in our house: to raise questions 🙂

You know, when we’ve decided to put stone on one wall of our tiny bathroom, people in the stores told us the stone was not for bathroom. But who actually listened to them? Not me, for sure. And that wall is exactly what makes our bathroom beautiful and interesting 🙂 (look HERE to convince yourself)

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Vintage, elegant, perfect floor lamp. It was waiting for us. I know it :)

Lighting is a very important aspect of a room. Almost as important as the furniture. People around here use, usually, only the central lights, but we tried to create our universe differently.

We like the light and we are aware that a room flooded with light brings peace, happiness and optimism to its people. In the daytime. But what do you do in the evening? I must admit I like a smaller light when the sun goes to sleep, but I would never say no to multiple sources of light.

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That means I agree with the specialists who say you must have, in a room, 3 different sources of light, without counting the central one. Because we are good “boys” and we listen what the specialists have to say, we had until today 2 sources of light. A paper tall lamp IKEA’s style (pictures HERE and HERE) and a wall bracket light, but Laurentiu especially wanted a floor lamp. A tall vintage look one.

….and lucky as you know we are, we’ve found it….

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The lamp of our dreams was waiting for us in a thrift store and it is like it was made exactly for our small living room. And it is such a beautiful object….Together with the tissue shade, the wooden and metal stalk with a story I am sure it has, it brings to the corner we’ve put it a beautiful, elegant warm light.

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I know the lamp is old, but I have no idea what time is coming from. Maybe the 30’s? Well…I don’t know, and even I’d like to know, of course, I don’t really care as long as the lamp is here….with us…making the universe of 3 light sources complete 🙂

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Create your own flavored oil

Flavored oil….Oh I like it soo, sooo much and that’s why I’m trying to have a little bottle in my pantry all the time. I don’t like to buy things like these. Things I can actually make myself, especially that there is such an easy thing to do….

You can use flavored olive oil especially on salads, but I also like to sprinkle with it the feta cheese, together with some fresh lemon juice and fresh herbs.

oil forknplatefoto credit: forknplate

What you need:

*a small glass bottle with a cap

*extra virgin olive oil

*red, green and black whole pepper

*a tiny branch of thyme and rosemary

*3 garlic cloves without skin

*a chilli if you like spicy foods

How to do it

Put all the herbs and condiments into the bottle, then add the oil over. Seal and let them rest in a cool and dark place (not in the fridge) for about 3 days. Always keep this oil in the cool and dark place 🙂

 

In pots, yard or window boxes, the vegetable garden is a must

If  somebody would have told me last year on this time that I’m gonna pick vegetables from our garden I don’t know if I would have believed :). Today, one year later, it’s almost like picking vegetables from not far from the center of our city (cause our neighborhood is on 10 minutes of walking from  it).

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When it comes to veggies, we’re not exactly new in “business”, cause we tried to do it before. In pots, on our balcony. And because it is such an easy thing to do, and so rewarding I would advice everybody to try it. A vegetable garden, no matter how tiny, is able to give you peace and happiness. Especially that by watching the plants growing, blooming and making fruits it’s almost like watching the Creator Himself at work.

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Green with some red here and there is our vegetable garden this time of the year and as we are such a great tomato eaters I can’t wait for the tomatoes to bless us with their beautiful red ripe color. They are young girls right now. And sooo many. And so pretty…Yeah, I’ve already tried 2 of them (the cherry tomatoes) this morning on breakfast, together with the freshly picked cucumbers.

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And speaking of “devil” I’m wondering who would say no to a perfectly healthy cucumber (or other vegetable)? Cause by growing your own plants, you know exactly what they contain. And where they are coming from. Especially that all they need is some soil, water, light and sunshine, love and a corner you share with them. Providing them with love and care is not going to let you unsatisfied, cause they are going to promise you a pretty “production” and sooo many ingredients for keeping your health (especially if you have children to grow)……

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Our vegetable garden has no more than 8 square meters but gave us, for this year a lot of cucumbers, onion, garlic, radishes (link HERE), some raspberries, potatoes (link HERE) and chilli. Right now we have patience while waiting for tomatoes, carrots (we already ate some) and peppers to fill our bellies :).

 

 

Breakfast feeling: “Eggs cocotte” with garam masala

There is no secret to anybody that I simply love eggs. I knew already you can do a lot of things with them but I am still amazed on how versatile eggs can be.

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I didn’t cook much lately and what I’ve cooked ended in our bellies without taking a single shot, but today I’m gonna show you how a simple and classic dish like egg in pot (eggs cocotte) may find itself on an Indian land.

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Yeah, I like Mediterranean food, Asian food, French food, English food, Romanian food, all the food in two words, as long as it is interesting or may become interesting. And so I’ve found that eggs cocotte could be.

For my breakfast today I’ve decided to transform some regular ingredients like eggs and sour cream into an interesting, spicy and flavored dish by adding the so interesting garam masala.

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Even the recipe “says” you should place one egg in one ramekin, I put 2 eggs to not complicate myself. Together with my eggs I prepared a beautiful fresh tomato salad I sprinkled with salt, olive oil, sweet balsamic cream vinegar and fresh Greek basil. Ah and the sweetness acidity of tomatoes went perfectly with the garam masala eggs in pots.

What you need

*1 (or 2) egg(s)

*2 spoons of sour cream

*1 ramekin (one for each person you try to amaze :D)

*salt & pepper & garam masala

How to do it

1. Preheat the oven on 200 degrees Celsius

2. Place one spoon of sour cream in each ramekin, then brake one egg (or 2 in my case) over

3. Add another sour cream over the eggs, salt, pepper and garam masala for a more exotic touch

4. Put warm water in a pot (not much to not get over the ramekins if it boils), place the ramekins in the pot and place the eggs in the oven for about 15 minutes.

5. If you like the eggs more cooked, let them more time in the oven 🙂

P.S. I’ve been focusing myself on cooking and posting here about dishes and food, lately, cause we didn’t do much in our house and garden. Except of taking care of them and cleaning them, of course, cause we’re preparing body and soul for our summer holiday in Crete. I hope we’ll come back with beautiful stories to tell and nice sources of inspiration but there is still time till then

 

 

….pure & simple…breakfast

When it comes to breakfast, I’m not the person who “eats” just one coffee and that’s it, neither the one who eats muesli, fruits and other “sweets”. I can’t say I didn’t try it, cause you have to try something before say it it is not your cup of tea, isn’t it?

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When it comes to breakfast, I am the person who EATS. Well….not like a piggy eat, more like a bird, but I know already, that if I start my day with fruits, I would die of starvation one hour later. Probably because I can’t say I am exactly a fruit person. If I could chose I would go with the vegetables I adore since my childhood.

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I know, I know, not all people are as lucky as I am and many of them don’t have too much time in the morning, but the breakfast is truly important for a good day start (the doctors said it already before me :)). Anyway. Today I found myself in this situation: with not so much time left to prepare a great breakfast. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t eat. And I had a great breakfast with calcium, lots of vitamins and minerals, together with the B12 vitamin from the egg I poached.

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What I had, was a simple and quick salad made of arugula sprinkled with a little salt, lemon and olive oil. The arugula salad was the “bed” for my one and only poached egg (I am not crazy about soft eggs, so I cooked it a little bit more) sprinkled with salt, white pepper and grated parmesan :).