torsdag 26 mars 2015

Tutorial: Make your own candles and a Giveaway

For you dear readers who has kept on reading my blog inspite of boring and delayed posts I will have a giveaway this post, to thank you all. 
First I would like to share a tutorial with you of how to make candles. 
I guess that you have already noticed that I'm interested in non-polluting issues? I don't like to waste things that can be reused at least once before throwing away  leaving it in the recycling bin.

Make your own block candles. 
What you need:
cotton yarn (for chrocheting, any colour will do)
empty beer cans or pringle tubes etc
adhesive putty
a stick, twig, pen (of that sort)
rests of candles, parraffine or stearine
a saucepan and an empty can
(one of my burning beer can candles)

The yarn is for the wick. You can choose to twine it double or you can braid it. I chosed to braid it this time because the double twined is a bit too thin (dependes on the thickness of the yarn of course). It takes time but it's worth a little patience. You can also buy premade candlewick but then you pay for something you propably already have. 

Pinch a hole in the center of the bottom of the beer can and tuck the wick through the hole, maybe you need to use a chrocheting hook to pull the wick through (I did). Tie a knot at the bottom and secure the hole and knot with lots of putty. 

Hold the wick straight and pull a stick through the braid or tie the braid around it. You need to keep the wick in the centre.

Melt your remnants from old candles but remove the coaled wick first. For a beer candle you need approx. 400 g of material. Heat water in the saucepan on the stove and put a can with stearine in the water to melt.
When everything is melted pour it in your mold (beer can) but leave a little.
As you can see on the photo above, I have used socks to isolate the can. This was an useless experiment. I wanted to prevent pipe forming during cooling but it didn't work.
After a couple of hours, a pipe is forming in the middle. It is neccessary to melt more stearine and to fill it up. If you don't, the wick won't longer be centered and instead, you have a hole in the middle. 
It's important that you work on a sturdy surface like a kitchen bench the putty can leak hot stearine.

Leave the candle to cool over night and peel off the can. Don't throw aluminum in your ordinary waste bin. Metal and especially aluminum is very energy saving to recycle. 
This is how one of my candles turned out (below). It is made of remnants from halloween candles.
Next tutorial is a glass jar candle and also the one I will share to one of my readers...
Use an old holder from a tea candle and press the hole open with a metal pin (or something). Pull the wick through and press the hole tight again with a plier. Glue the holder to the center of the bottom of a glass jar with hot glue.

 Here's another tip I can give you: old tea light holders are made in aluminum but the wick holder is made of steel. If you put those in the recycling bin you need to separate the wick holder from the aluminum, otherwise the aluminum will follow the steel holder with the magnetic separator and end up as fumes in the air (not very good, right ?). 

Ok, well. Center the wick in the same fashion as the beer candle and do the same procedure. 

If you have some oilscents you like, you can add a few drops to the molten stearine before pouring it in you mold. 
The giveaway
Voilá. Here it is my own recycled jar candle, offered for you as a give away. I embellished the jar with some prints and scraps. 
The oil scent is all natural oils, citrus and ylang-ylang for example.
To join the giveaway you only have to leave a comment and tell me that your'e in. Leave your e-mail adress or tell me how to contact you in other ways.
Take care precious ones!!

The giveaway will be open 2,5 weeks from now, and it is worldwide of course :-)

fredag 6 mars 2015

Sports holiday hangover

I'm not sure if Sweden is unique in the way that we have a school holiday called "sports vacation" one week every February, maybe you could tell me? Well, this year school was closed for two weeks in this town due to the World Championships in skiing. I also had 1,5 week of duty as a teacher but worked two days as a volunteer at the event. 
My favourite knitted wool hat to keep my brain warm from the snow slush. 

Not usually a sports nerd but as the Swedish team took lots of medals and the event taking place in my town it was irresistable to avoid. One of my students was also competing in ski jumping.
The photos below shows the ski jumping arena with lots of drunk and crazy Norwegians waving their flags (took even more medals). Two Gripen planes passing by and a backstage photo taken from my booth selling food. 

The community tried to take advantage of all the visitors and do something cultural down town. Grafitti walls, food market, and ice statues (melting away) et cetera. 
You can see at the photo in the middle wich one who is an indoor person and who is the outdoor one. 

I promised earlier to take more photos of the buildings in my town. I love the details of this house.

Alfons was for once ready to try downhill skiing and we went to the local slope. First visit for me. Ok, we have mountains. BUT they are not Alpine mountains as a visiting polititian from the Capital claimed. Wonder if she slept on her Geography class at primary school. 
View from the top. 

It went great. As he listened carefully at my instructions, he managed the skiis only after one round.
I'm a sucker for nice views. Here's view of our beautiful lake Runn that is very popular for skating. 

 The sports vacation was too short for recovering from a hectic semester. Like most teachers I was cursed by the flu a couple of days (no time to be sick, except on holidays). My ambition was to do more than I had time to. I did take some time to paint though, wich I usually never have time for, sadly because it's very calming.  Johan says I painted his coworker. 

 Well well see each other next vacation...Easter maybe?

fredag 20 februari 2015

Jewellery organising

For a while a great deal of irritation has been launched every morning I wanted to choose a jewellery for my outfit. I ended up picking those laying on top and never using earrings because they are always scattered.
So this is a project that has been in progress for a long while. The towel holder was found at a flea market without a rod and no paint. The only thing I did was to paint it and carve a twig fitting the holes for the rod.
The bracelet stands are all handmade by myself. The bottom is a part of a mug holder. With glue, a drill and a screwdriver it was more easier than it look like. The padding under the fabric is glued on with hot glue. 
 I also made a little drawer from three Glossy boxes and their lids to store more jewellery. This is a great tutorial if you have those boxes (or three of another kind).
The necklace bust is made of a lamp foot and a bust made of plaster strips.
The little pink box on the right is a upcycled box from an electronics supplyer. It is wrapped in wallpaper and decorated with old clock gears and a small mounting. 
I will add boxes and a earring holder later. 

 Our town has changed and got a sudden world wide focus due to the World championships in skiing. It's the first time I'm visiting an event like this as I'm not very interested in watching sports. But wow, it was amazing so many happy people and all the yelling and waving flags. The photo below only shows a half of the audience. 
 Lots of people stood in the snow along the track as well. 

It's a big event around the championship as well with lots of sponsors showing their products. SAAB showed their warplane Gripen and Alfons tried the cockpit of it,(looks claustrophobic in my opinion).

With sturdy boots and skirts in layers you don't have to freeze. 

tisdag 3 februari 2015

Work and winter

First of all, I would like to show you a photo of my university were I study. This is in Karlstad 160 km from where I live. Thankfully I have a friend to stay with when I visit. This is the back entrance of the uni but I loved the contrast between the gloomy morninglight and the light from the buildings. I'm supposed to practice as a teacher at my own work this term, but I'm working as a professional already. 

Next photo is the view from my office window. You can see the bus stop, train tracks and the mist rising from the lake.

If I turn my head 90 degrees, this is the other view. Isn't this fantastic? I call it our Eagles nest and we are 5 teachers sharing office. I censure photos from the inside to keep you in false expectations of a clean and organised place. From this angle you can see the river that divide our town in half. The brown building on the other side is the theater and cultural center. The white building is actually where the other half of our schools reside. The old building with the tower is the senior elementary school were my two oldest kids are going. If you would be able to turn your head right you would see the shopping street. 

I've been working at the school for, wow, it's already 5 months!! I think the job is great so far. I really like to work with these young people, they give me lots of energy but sometimes makes me drained. It's a challenging work but it is so much more rewarding and useful than the other jobs I had. I work too much though and have very little sparetime, but that's a teachers life.

I have to show you the soap making laboration we had a few weeks ago. I wanted to show them how easy it is to work with chemistry at home and make something useful. The samples on the photo contains, orange, lavender, cacao, honey and tobacco.

Following photos was shot this weekend. Another half week is gone and it's still snowing...I have heard many complaining about the snow, but I love it! I even like to shovel it!

This is my tired, red nosed shoveling self. As you obviously can see and probably already know, I don't aspire to be a fashion blog.

 I have to shovel the bunnies pen's to prevent them from running away. 

Can you believe my Wilma has reached the decent age of 7,5 years? I have never own a bunny that old. She is in great condition too. 

 This is how my apple garden looks like for the moment. Lots of the fluffy white stuff covering it.

 There is just a little more than one week until we will have the Skii world championship in our town. That means that the schools are shutting down for two whole weeks (instead of one). I will work as a volonteer a few days, but I also hope to have som sparetime for once.

tisdag 6 januari 2015

After Christmas sale haul

Look what I found at the Christmas sale! Jean Paul Gaultier underwear for half of the price. They are very comfortable too.
I had money from my birthday, christmas and a gift card. For once I used them to buy something for myself only and one of the rare times I go to a sale I shopped lots of clothes. A pair of trousers, a pair of tights, a sweeping jacket, two long sleeved tops and these undies. The background of the photo is our bedclothes bought at H&M. 

Tomorrow is the end of my vacation and I'll go back to work again. The week starts with two extreme days with several lectures. I don't like that because I'm not as prepared as I should.

torsdag 1 januari 2015

A cold winters day

 A few days after Christmas we had a very low temperature, but the sun gave warmth.
  As the bunnies had their cages at the north side of the house, they  weren't able to take part of the sunlight. The temperature reached down to -20 degrees Celcius at night. To assure you that the bunnies don't take any harm of the cold I tell you that the straw in the cages gives shelter and plenty of food gives energy enough to keep them warm. I have actually found them prefering the cold ground outside their cages wich I never close the door. The old one, Wilma has actually reached the respectable age of 7,5 years. By giving them room for movement in a natural environment and variation in food, they can absolutely live long and healthy.
They have to be separated as they would fight  themselves to death. The pens are much larger during summertime by the way. Here's Pooki eating her food and enjoing the sunlight. It was - 17 degrees outside but as the air is still and very dry, you're not troubled by the cold.
The time is two o'clock on the afternoon and the sun is about to set.

We had a great New Years eve. We were invited to a couple of friends along with other accuaintances for dinner and to celebrate the new year. It was actually the first party I wen't to since summertime, just what both me and Johan needed.

I hope you had a wonderful New Years night as well. 

måndag 29 december 2014

Bat fit: Kick off for 2015

Ouch! I'm heavier than ever... haven't I written this before? Yes, I have. Reasons for this are: I eat too much sugar, too large portions of food and sit most of my time. So, it would be reasonable if I lost weight if I changed those things, right?

Last years motto for Frannys Bat fit 2014 was Cleansing and a cleansing year it was. I cleansed my life from a toxic job, a job that bored the hell out of me. The problem with too many workplaces are that the hierarcic structure is not for the companys best but for the bosses in charge. As an employee you are not supposed to say your opinion or try to change things for the better. If you have ideas, keep them for yourself. And for god sake, it's better do do nothing at all than to do something wrong. It may sound harsh and I may sound bitter but I have learned to never trust people again.

One of the best desicions I've made was to start my University studies again. I've got following questions so many times now: But how do you cope with work and studies at the same time? You can get sick again. Well the best cure from my now gone depression is the studies. I once again got cleared that I'm NOT stupid and I'm capable of doing hard work when it's motivated.

My goals for Bat Fit 2015 are following
1. Skip sugar, eat smaller portions and eat more healthy home made food. I will also stop eating sandwiches for breakfast and have a green smoothie instead.

2. Start almost every morning with yoga. I have already started and it feels great eventhough I look more like an elephant on the circus. I will also have a goal that I will take a walk from work (12 km). I will go to the local pool and swim 1 km as I did before, almost once a week.

3. I will do a good proffessional job as a teacher and be the kind and cheerful one as I started. I'm actually very impressed by myself and my great patience :-)

4. I will keep on with my studies with second University degree.