November Favorites :: an alaska native memoir, an ambient-drone remix & a few more

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Heho! Well, November was somehow a weird month for me, but I decided to focus on all things creativity to defy the grey weather and all the strange things that appeared and happened around me. So I took a good amount of online classes to improve my drawing skills, doodled a lot (if you like to see) and knitted three huge scarfs. And there it is again: the shining sun. ;-)

#foryoursoul: I can eat soups all year ’round, but this creamy cauliflower soup with fried chestnuts is definitely one for the colder seasons. It’s completely vegan unless you add some creme and/or butter for a more hearty taste. In the end, sprinkle it with some fresh cress, it definitely spices the whole dish up. Send me a message if you like to have a full recipe.

#foryourears: Ro has been pretty creative as well lately and his remix for end.user called “between” is one of his recent outcomes. It’s basically ambient-drone, which I think is pretty nice to listen to these days. So what do you think?

#foryoureyes: Past month I very much tried to use any good weather to pursue my new hobby which is exploring city-nature by feet. So Ro and I first walked around the Kulkwitzer See which I did for the very first time. It was a good nine kilometer long walk which I enjoyed a lot mostly because of the really nice landscape around this old mining spot. Another day we went up to the Rosental tower and discovered a huge tree with a partly burned-out stem in the amazingly autumn-ish smelling riparian woods in our neighborhood. And last Saturday we went on top of the Fockeberg for the first time in our lives at night to take some cool pictures of the city. It was freezing cold but the view was worth it.

#foryourmind: I am reading a lot of memoirs lately. I like to follow the turns a person’s life can take and most of the time I get tons of inspirations from other people’s life. I have a huge pile of books I want to read and I actually don’t buy what Amazon recommends to me. But this time I couldn’t resist. It really was the beautifully drawn cover that convinced me to get “The Tao of Raven. An Alaska Native Memoir” by Ernestine Hayes. Then I learned that the author is Native American, which made me the more curious to read this book. In the end I felt the story was pretty dark and devastating, but I also know that’s how life is for most indigenous people these days. I marked a couple of quotes, but this is my favorite and most promising one: “Speaking out, speaking up, resisting, protesting – these acts show the tenacity of a culture that has had its philosophic center all but destroyed, its ways of education all but obliterated, its language threatened, its sovereignty denied, its laws disregarded, its authority displaced, and its lands and stories appropriated. But the gates of colonialism have not prevailed against it. For a few generations, Alaska Native people stood at a precipitous brink, at the end of a path constructed out of someone else’s history. And now an Indigenous path will be carved.”

I am looking forward to the first days of snow, do you? ;-)

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October Favorites :: ambient tunes, amazing mountains & a few more

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Hello! Right before I am starting in a long weekend, I like to share the things that I enjoyed the most in October. So have fun reading!

#foryoursoul: I’ve always liked the combination of sweet and salty, but most of the time I had it in snacks. Until the day I created this dish, which is basically mashed sweet potato with creamy spinach, some goat cheese and a few pieces of crispy fried Serrano ham. Hands down, this tastes excellent and is super easy to make!

#foryourears: Well, this season is the time for more chilly sounds, so here we go with another podcast Ro created for Adventurous Music. It’s called Life’s Fading Light and features some nice ambient tunes.

#foryoureyes: At the beginning of this month, Ro and I spent some time in the Thuringian Forest which was awesome. I especially remember long walks through small towns, where I spent a lot of time during my childhood years. All were surrounded by beautiful nature with the most colorful trees and the hills I cannot get enough of such as the Kickelhahn where we used the steepest shortcut I ever hiked in my entire life to get to the top (it’s 861 meter high). But the view was worth the effort. Besides that, we stayed at the very nice Mara, had a couple of organic coffees and cakes at Zucker und Zimt and got the worldwide most delicious bratwurst at Schumm’s. After all, I am really hooked when it comes to walking and hiking right now and even exploring my hometown feels more exciting when I do it by foot. But I sure will come back to this beautiful scenery.

#foryourmind: When I red this book, the author said, Gandhi had less than ten things when he died. Well, I didn’t know much about Gandhi besides the common things, so I first watched the movie from 1982 and continued my research with reading his autobiography and also “The Gift of Anger” by his grandson Arun Gandhi. It includes ten lessons he learned from his grandfather, but I sure learned a lot more reading this book. So among a lot of quotes I wrote down here is the one that completely resonated with my love for minimalism/essentialism: “If you use money and material gain to define your value, you may end up feeling hollow. There is something missing at the core. No amount of acquired stuff is going to fill that emptiness. We need to separate our self-worth from the stuff we have acquired.”

Talk to you soon! :-)

 

September Favorites :: essentialism, a 10 bpm song & a few more

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Time really flies, right? It’s the end of September already and here are the four things that I found most inspiring lately.

#foryoursoul: I recently came across a recipe for a vegetable corn chowder. It sounded pretty tasty so I made one right away with the veggies I found in my fridge. There I had fresh corn from the cob and some carrots, zucchini, and red pepper. I just put a little olive oil into a pot, added some onions and all the veggies. I then added as much veggie broth and cream until everything was covered. I let it boil until the veggies had the right consistency, added salt and pepper to taste and garnished it with fresh herbs such as parsley and thyme. It’s sweet, salty and crunchy and it’s actually my favorite chowder right now. (Sorry, no link to a recipe in here since I can’t remember where I found it. But I am sure you can master this one with just trusting your intuition. ;-))

#foryourears: Last week Ro found an article where a Danish club called for tracks not faster than 10 bpm for a 10 bpm club night. Ro was hooked right away and got really excited to participate since creating a song in this tempo for a club night is kind of a funny challenge. But here it is. It’s called China Leads The World (Copenhagen Edit)”, created by Signalstoerung. It has a lot of bass and weird tunes and voices that makes it, in my opinion, pretty cool. So what do you think? Would you dance to it?

#foryoureyes: Do you remember the Očhéthi Šakówiŋ camp on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation which happened a couple of month ago to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline? Well, they released a film about it which is called Awake – A Dream From Standing Rock”. I watched it and found it very moving. It reveals some insights and calls once again to adjust our perception of the environment and the things that are happening right now.

#foryourmind: I cannot recommend enough Greg McKeown’s book “Essentialism – The Disciplined Pursuit of Less”. When I met Ro almost two decades ago, he already was a minimalist. I found that lifestyle pretty interesting but I still have a kind of hard time letting certain things go. So when I red this book, I came to the conclusion that it’s not important to only have a few things. It’s rather important to have things that truly are essential to you. So there are many phrases in that book that I found inspiring, but here is the one that stuck with me the most: “If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.”

Well, enjoy autumn and have a great time! :-)

Summer Fav :: Elbe Sandstone Mountains

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This year’s summer I had the chance to travel a lot and with a longer stay in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains (also known as Saxon Switzerland) a lifelong dream came true. I have been traveling the world but never made it to these beautiful mountains in my own state. Mostly because I am a bit picky with accommodation and food. But then I found out about an eco hotel in that area and decided to check this one out.

First of all, the hotel was very beautiful. We had a room on the riverside and enjoyed the best organic food and delicious dishes all day long including regional organic beer and cake. They also offered lunch bags filled with lovely prepared bread rolls, veggies and fruits for hikers, free tea in the afternoon as well as different activities by a healing practitioner. Hotel guests were also invited to use the sauna for free. The little village of Schmilka is right at the border to the Czech Public and it is practically an eco village. Most of the restaurants sell organic food and they brew their own organic beer and bake organic bread and cakes. We also met very kind and friendly people there and enjoyed the amazingly beautiful landscape and pretty cool hiking trails. I was so happy to find this please, I even got over my acrophobia, and since then I call hiking a new hobby.

So if you are looking for paradise, trust me, go to Schmilka, it’s pretty close. ;-)