Sunday, July 13, 2014

Full moon, full of love

Hello sweeties,

Yesterday we decided to go for one of our most favorites walks in the city center and head out to Acropolis to watch the sunset and the full moon. Nick said I should get my new camera with me to shoot some photos. I said that I don't even know which button does what and that we'd have a better chance of shooting one photo with our phones! I was in a stupid mood because I hadn't find time to read the manual of the camera yet and I would miss the chance to shoot the sunset and the moon.

And then he did what he always does when I am in need of a pep talk. He said "Well then you definitely have to bring your camera with you! We will use these photos as the before and then we will go again for the same shooting in some months and then you'll get a chance to see the after!" Have you figured out why I am so ridiculously in love with my hubby yet?

We had a good time watching the sunset and taking photos! I think I shoot about 3000 of them, lol! I also think I got one right (for the level of knowledge I don't have!) so here it is, Acropolis under the full moon and full of love!



I don't know who was on Cummings mind when he wrote “Yours is the light by which my spirit's born: - you are my sun, my moon, and all my stars.”, but my dedication is to my husband! Love you!

I hope you had a great time last night. If you have any suggestions on how to improve/change/learn about photography I would love to hear your advice!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Works of art for your home and a $75 giveaway!

Hello sweeties,

I haven't had much experience in home decor posts but my last one seem to be well liked so I thought I'd give it another try.

This time I wanted to introduce to you a new site I stumbled upon, www.artisoo.com. It is a great site to shop for oil paintings, canvas sets and chinese art.

One of favorite artists is Gustav Klimt. I love the sentiment behind his paintings and my two most favorite pieces are the Kiss and Mother and Child.




It is very easy to shop in Artisoo, either by artist, color or house room! I have empty walls right now in the house and I like them that way but if I were to hang some art pieces I would definitely go for the ones above and the following ones:





I wouldn't use them all in the same room and I would add smaller modern pieces to go with them. I don't really like the feeling of too many visual stimuli in one room. I'd rather focus on people not objects.

Artisoo if offering to three (yes 3!) of my readers a $25 voucher to spend in their site. Since some of their paintins are on sale or special offer the voucher take you close to 50% off some of the paintings! You can participate in the giveaway using the rafflecopter below. The giveaway will run for 7 days!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I would love to hear what is your favorite artist and piece!


UPDATE! Giveaway winners are shown above! Congrats!!!! I'll contact you soon!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Summer earrings DIY

Hello sweeties,

I have a new tutorial for you today! I will show you how to make your very own stylish summer earrings with a nautical twist!


You are going to need two 9cm pieces of leather cord. Mine is a gorgeous reptile print opal metallic leather I got from www.endlessleather.com. Those guys have awesome leather supplies!!! 


You are also going to need two end caps, two ear wires, some jump rings and two anchor charms.


Although I show you gold jump rings in the photo above, I ended up using antique gold ones and I also used 2 pieces of 2.5cm of antique gold chain and super glue (not shown).

Ready? Go!

First you add a tiny bit of glue on the inside of the end caps.


Then you insert the two ends of one leather piece, thus forming a loop. Take your pliers and press down to close the end cap.


Do the same for the other piece of leather and end cap. You should be looking at something like this.


Now, take a jump ring and connect it to one of the chain pieces and without closing it, pass it through your end cap loop. Then close and secure the jump ring.


Take another jump ring and use it to connect the loop of the ear wire to the previous jump ring. You can also skip this ring but that way your earrings will be facing side ways.


Then take another jump ring and use it to connect the end of the chain to the anchor charm loop.


Do the same for the other earring. And you are done! Your earrings are ready for your ears!!! Enjoy!





I love their gold and bronze hues and I love them because they are intense but very light weighted!


So there you have it! I love easy and quick tutorials that yield such a great result (if I may say so myself, lol!)!!! Don't you?


If you make earrings using this tutorial I would be thrilled to see them so do share!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Relax and get lost!

Hello sweeties,

I woke up this morning with a mood to hide from my chores and relax. So I figured I'd share this wonderful quote with you, to promt you to do the same ;)


Have fun today whatever you do!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Monday, July 7, 2014

Two ingredients apricot jam!

Hello sweeties,

most of you know I am a sweet tooth but with our super healthy way of eating these year, I've somewhat abstain from eating sweets. Well, mostly abstain, lol!

I've already mentioned my dear blogofriend Dimitra from Decorasylum and her boyfriend were kind enough to give me a large bag of apricots. I couldn't eat them before they went bad so I decided to make some jam! Miam!!!
photo from oohprettyshiny

I am going to share this recipe since it is reaaaaally easy and the end result is reaaaaally delicious!

What you'll need is apricots and sugar. For every kilo of apricot you'll need a kilo of sugar.

Wash the fruit thoroughly, open and discard the kernels. Cut the apricots into small pieces of 1cm roughly. Put the fruit in a large pan. Add the sugar, put the lid on and leave in the fridge for a day.





Once you open the pan the next day you'll notice the apricots have created some juice. You'll also notice the great smell!!!!

Put the pan in a medium to high temperature and stir with a wooden spoon for half an hour or until most of the juice is gone and the jam is thick and has a good viscosity.


Optional: If you like the jam without large pieces of fruit in it you should use a food processor to polverize the jam. I like big junks in the jam so I didn't do this step.

Leave the jam to cool and poor into glass containers. Store in the fridge.

This is a very healthy sweet treat since it doesn't contain any fat from cream and stuff.

Good luck if you decide to make it!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Sunday, July 6, 2014

A trip to Nafplio and bonus meetings!

Hello sweeties,

a few weeks back we had a sort vacation to one of our most loved places in Greece, Nafplion! We have been there so many times but we never get bored!

There are some good places to walk around and window shop from cute stores, or just have a stroll.


You can always count on the greatest ice cream in the area from Antica Gelateria di Roma. My husband was too slow taking a photo from my cone before it ended!


The sunset is magnificent looking at the Bοurzi.


Off course we always visit our beloved beach at Kondyli! There is just too many lovely creatures to see underneath the sea there! I love snorkeling and I always love these guys! I don't know their name but Nikos and I call them Sea's Cookie Monster! Can you guess why?

date of photo taken 2014

date of photo taken 2010

Something really cool happened when we were there last time! We were laughing and splashing each other in the sea when Nikos jumped up and said: "Is that a fin? I am sure I saw a fin!". At first I made fun of him but then I looked at where he was looking and saw... a fin! An actual dolphin was swimming near us! I was sooooo excited I started clapping my hands like a little child! It wasn't close enough for us to see more that its fin but we could make out the cute dance it made going in and out of the water! We stared at it at least for half an hour and then it was gone! 



It is too bad I didn't think to grab the camera and try to photo it until it was too late! Well, that's ok, we will never forget it either way!

The second bonus meeting of the trip is that we met with Dimitra from Decorasulym and had coffee! I was thrilled to meet a blog friend in person and we had a great time chatting about anything and everything! Before we left she and her friend gave as a large bag of apricots! I love apricots!!!! They were sooo delicious but quite too many for me to eat before they went bad so I decided to make jam! I will post the recipe in the next post! 

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Happy home decor ideas

Hello sweeties,

I've been home bound these days due to another neck injury. My thick skull seems to be supported by not so strong muscles that keep failing to hold it to place, so I get this excruciating pain conditions that make me loose sleep, take pain killers like candy and generally feel miserable.

This time I am going to try and see the bright side of having a few days off work and write some posts here and there. Oh, and by posts I mean happy posts, so scratch the start of this one and focus more on what's next.

Today, I am going to show you some favorite decor ideas that include happiness! Yeap, you read correct! Happiness! Bright colors, cool textures that sort of thing! I hope you'll like them as much as I do!

I am going to start with this bedroom which inspired the whole post! I saw that on pinterest and begun to drool all over my laptop! I want that room!!! This is what HAPPY is all about!

[source]

Then I saw these pillows from LoveJoyCreate on etsy and fell in love! I guess if you are not so thrilled about the color splash above you can use a few drops of color here and there to brighen up a room, right?

hello pillow

I don't know what says happiness better than having your morning coffee at your colorful balcony! Notice how the color mostly comes from the fabrics used. Who says you have to have a lot of plants to have a happy view? I love my flowers but for those who don't this is a great solution!


Here's another think to make you happy while drinking you morning coffee: Happy colorful coasters! How cute are they?

crochet coaster set


And who says your bathroom has to be dull and boring? How about making it bright and ...happy!

[source]

Since it is summer you may want to invest some of your time and turn you old boring chairs into magnificent colorful chairs that will brighten up any space! It is really not so difficult and look how great a bunch of them look together!


Oh, If you are looking for a way to make a boring desk gorgeous, then take a look at Eleanna's tutorial in this very blog!



Last but not least, how about the kid's room? Well, if any room of the house HAS to be labeled happy is this one right? This one is just divine!

[source]

I hope you like my suggestions for a happy decor. Whatever you decide to do to your home, remember what Audrey used to say about happiness. "Happy girls are the pretiest girls!"

Smouts for now!

Akamatra

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The making of a monster prop - DIY

Hello sweeties

Most of you know how much my hubby loves science and how involved he is in science communication. Recently he landed his first radio show in an online radio station called RadioReboot, where he talks about science trivia and interesting stories while playing metal music. He also writes science articles in a science site called openscience. But his first big accomplishment in science communication was winning last years FameLab competition and traveling to England to represent Greece.

Famelab is a science communication competition where the contestants have to present a scientific subject of their liking to an audience and critiques in under 3 minutes time. They are not allowed to have any computer backup but they are allowed to have props.

So, my sweet darling husband, decided to talk about a Geological phenomenon that had taken mythological proportions in the past eons. He talked about Lernea Hydra, a mythological beast with 12 regenerative (!!!!) heads that Hercules killed, not before destroying and killing villages and villagers. He prepared a brilliant presentation but was in desperate need of a prop. So, he asked me to make him a monster. A Lernea Hydra monster!

My first reaction was to laugh! I am not a toy maker, I didn't even owned a sewing machine back then! I looked at him incredulous and asked him "Are you kidding me? How can I make you a prop that has 9 heads and once you cut one two new emerge? I am not Geppetto, love!". He just shrugged and said, "Well, since I am not married to Geppeto, I'll take what you can give me" and left the room.

I am not one to let a challenge die so I started thinking about a possible way to make this prop. I decided to make a dinosaur-like body with lizard-like heads that would be attached to Velcro and could be detached from the body. For the life of me I couldn't come up with a solution to have two new heads emerge for the cut one so my science torturer would have to live with that!


I took some green fabric from an old skirt ( I love to recycle!) and started to make the body. First I cut a long rectangular piece of fabric that started of at ~15cm width and ended at ~ 5cm width in order to make the body with the long tail. I sew that length wise to form a cylinder that ends to a tail. I didn't have a sewing machine at the time so it took some time to sew it by hand. Mind you this had to be really well sew cause my baby was going to be throwing it over his shoulder at some point so we didn't want the seams breaking open!

I filled the body with cotton and rice to make pliable and give it weight. It turned out great!

I really had no real plan as to what to do with the top of the monster's body so I just sew it the best I could and then added a little more fabric on top to hide the seams.




Then it was time to make the feet! I made 4 fabric pipes and cut 4 pieces of light brown leather and formed them into nails. I saw each nail into each foot and filled them with cotton. Then I added a piece of wire so I could bend the feet to make them more realistic. Lastly I attached the feet to the bottom of the body.




Making the 9 heads was tricky! I wanted them to be able to be attached to the body by Velcro so that when the time came Niko could pull them from the body and throw them down. He said he didn't have time to pull of 9 heads so I had to cluster them into groups.



I used another type of fabric for the heads. I made fabric pipes and then used hot glue to glue the horn/mane/things in their backs to make them look dinosaur-like. Using hot glue in this project seemed like a cheat but I honestly didn't have the strength to sew on 9 horn/mane/things!

I used a red fabric to make their tongues and plastic buttons for their eyes. Those were also hot glued thankfully for my hands! You should note that it took me almost 3 days to complete this project it was not easy!!!


At the end of each head I added some Velcro and then added it's opposite in the end of the monster's body.



It turned out better than I hoped for, my hubby was really pleased and he did very good in his final presentation. He didn't win the competition but he was brilliant and our little monster got many compliments!

You can watch his presentation to the FameLab International here.


Here is my hubby's blog (for Greek readers) and his Facebook page where he shares brilliant science knowledge!

Lernea Hydra has a special place in our house and an even more special in our heart. After that I begun to make more stuffed animals for my hubby and he uses them as props in his presentations. In another post I am going to show you how to make a Mike Wasovski from Monsters Inc! Stay tuned!

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hello July!

Hello sweeties,

again I took my own sweet time to post but life gets in the way of blogging I suppose!

I have been busy with two christenings, the first one of my handsome nephew Dimitris which was amazing, took place some weeks ago.

For the second one me and my husband got to be godparends to a gorgeous girl we named the very fitting name Aphrodite!

We had a great time in both baptisms and I have a lot of DIY for you guys, just give me some time to get my stuff together!

I leave you with the gorgeous center piece Aphrodite's mother made for the occasion. Isn't it marvelous?



I promise I'll post here soon about my new creations, some very fun tutorials and maybe a little bit of decor too ;)

Smouts for now

Akamatra

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

XBOX ONE Giveaway!

Hello sweeties,

Today I am happy to bring you a chance (or many) to win an amazing XBOX ONE! Good luck everybody :)




Hosted by:
NYSavingSpecials

Co-hosted by:
Barbara's BeatMOMenvy BlogArmy Wife to Suburban LifeMomStart and Simply Sherryl

Come and join us in this great giveaway
You can be the lucky winner 




xBox One



June 2  To June 16 11:59pm EST.

Valid only in the Continental United States.
Void where prohibited

18 years or older to enter/only 1 entrant per household
Winner is chosen through random.org

All entries are optional.

All winning entries will be verified.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

DisclaimerYOUR BLOG NAME is not responsible for the awarding of the prize. If you have any questions about this giveaway, please email the host at nysavingspecials@gmail.com. This blog, Facebook, Twitter or any other social media network is not associated with this giveaway.

Smouts for now

Akamatra
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