Monday, May 30, 2016

Hospital Food Pictures

Over the past 7 years I have had the dubious pleasure of being hospitalized 6 times. While 2 of those occasions were in the maternity ward, I was in the children's hospital 3 times and once in the neurology department but I don't remember that one :)

I have to say the service was very good, I always had everything I needed, for myself and for the kids but the food is still diet and typically Czech. Breakfast almost always included bread rolls and a slice of bread with cumin and dinners were light, fruit and yogurt wit ham and cheese and bread. Lunch was the biggest affair, of course, always 2 courses, soup and main dish.

The children's hospital is private, smaller than the maternity so they let me choose my lunch. The kiddo had a separate diet every time, according to the age he had, the last time he was a toddler already but he was there for a stomach bug so the poor thing got the bread banana biscuit rice diet. As much of it as he wanted. Pictured below is one lunch I had there, rice with a meat roll which was better than it looked and a yeast soup, very Czech but the jury is still out, not one of my favorite soups anyway. I had the same carrot bouillon they served the kid, pictured below, it needed salt.





The food in the maternity is the same as in the university hospital so I didn't get to choose. You can see the plates it came in to keep it warm. A bit bland and not so appropriate after a c section but still good value for money. The minced meat and veggie dish below was surprisingly good with a pinch of salt.















I'll post more hospital food pics if I find them on my phone or you can send me some. Hope your lunch today is not a hospital one :) Have a nice week.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Super Easy Delicious Yogurt Cake

I'll let you in on my go to, super secret super delicious recipe for a great loaf of cake. Did I mention it's super easy AND super fast? It's the basis for all the cakes I make, very easy to adjust to what I have in the pantry, easy to mix and virtually impossible to miss (unless you forget the cake in the oven)

You need to take one pot of yogurt as measurement unit.

1 yogurt (125-150ml)
1 yogurt pot oil
2 yogurt pot sugar
3 eggs
3 yogurt pot flour
5 gr baking powder
1 small bag vanilla sugar


Method: In a bowl, mix in all the liquid ingredients. Add the sugar and vanilla and mix until the sugar is melted. Mix the baking powder with the flour and add over the other ingredients, one cup at a time, making sure the flour has blended well before adding another cup. Oil a standard loaf pan and sprinkle flour to coat the pan evenly. Pour the batter in the pan and cook in the oven at 180°C for about 30 minutes or until a bamboo skewer or tooth pick come out clean.

Options and variants:

Apple or other fruits : for example add 1 big apple or 2 smaller ones - peeled and cut intro small cubes to the batter. Also works well with peaches, apricots, berries, etc.
Cacao marble cake: Set aside about 1/3 of the batter and slowly incorporate 1 measure Cocoa powder into it, until it is evenly brown. Put one spoon of the cocoa batter in the pan, next 2 spoons of regular batter and so on. You can make a mark with your spoon, be creative.
Banana : Like above, slice about 2 bananas and add to the batter but be careful, cooking time could be higher.
Coconut : add about one pot coconut flakes and about 50 gr chocolate chips.

Let me know if you have other ideas ow to personalize this cake. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Boat over West Lake in Hangzhou

It's been one year since my return from one month in China. It wasn't a long trip, unfortunately, but it changed things in my life quite a bit.

While in China I visited the West lake in Hangzhou, South of Shanghai. I wish I had better pictures to share with you but this is all I have that is not a picture of me, my wee one and our friend. We were actually on a boat just like that one.



The West lake is very famous in China, images of the lake are featured on Chinese bank notes. Also, Apple's biggest Asian store is just next door.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

My Honeymoon in South Bohemia

Going through my photos, I again stumbled upon some oldies I feel like sharing. Pictures from our "honeymoon". We got married 4 years ago and although we never had a proper honeymoon, we took a few weekend escapes, just the two of us. The trip to the South Bohemia was organized by my husband: he found a great hotel with wellness and we had dinner in a medieval restaurant.  We also rented a tandem bike and rode along the river, taking in the autumn leaves and people's holiday houses


Before I got married, maybe I had a different idea of how I wanted my honeymoon to be, now that we have these memories, it's exactly how my honeymoon should be: a series of weekend getaways.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Inspiration for the Home: Closet Space under eaves

I live in a loft, right under the roof. While it may seem glamorous, it isn't: too hot in summer, too cold in winter and decorating is a female dog. One of my problems is organizing the storage space in the low nook inside my bedroom. I looked to the internet for inspiration and before I show you my result (which is different from the inspiration because it's cheaper and easier), I share with you some
interesting ideas.

These 2 photos look a bit like my nook but the ceiling is higher (really). Although they don't work for me yet, these shelves are an interesting solution if you have attic storage space.



Because of the low ceiling and different angles of the roof in that spot, I have an issue with mounting clothes rails. Here are 3 solutions I liked until I found my cheaper alternative.



Finally, here's some closets I liked.


I'll show you my solution on facebook.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

What makes a destination romantic?

One of my close friends is getting married. We recently met for coffee and, naturally the discussion moved from the dress to the honey moon destination.  We asked ourselves: what makes a place romantic?

Is it the clear water of the sea or the yellow sand of an island retreat?



Is it the clear blue sky above a snow capped mountain peak? Or is it the perfect reflection of the mountain in the lake's water? Or maybe the pink blush of the cherry trees.



If you are a city person maybe romantic is about walking around busy streets admiring the architecture and  meeting your sweetheart at cafes to watch the people pass and the sun go down.



While my friend doesn't know where to go on honeymoon, I can tell you that for me the destination is more an excuse to be with my man and create memories. The most romantic destination can be any of the above.

Photos from shutterstock, city cafe : alvhemmakleri.se

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Czech living : the Lawn Mower

My mum pointed it out to me this morning when we heard that all too familiar sound: Czechs like to cut grass. Not one day passes without a neighbor using his lawn mower. Big or small, no patch of grass is left uncut. If the neighbors give a day off to their tools then it's the town workers cutting the grass on the green areas around the trees and in the parks. 

I've had neighbors who would cut the grass and plant flowers in the common areas around buildings. They didn't have to, the building could've hired a gardener but they did it because they enjoy it. It's like if a Czech doesn't have a garden of his own, he'll find one or improvise, any excuse is good to put on Wellington boots and take out the gardening tools: cut grass, plant, dig holes in wet soil. I think everyone on my block owns a lawn mower, at least a small, hand held one and has a garden, even if it's just one on the balcony, where they cut the grass..

Judging by the number of times I hear a mower, trimming the lawn must be Czech Republic's favorite pastime. Besides beer drinking, of course.

Before:



After: a manicured lawn and people enjoying spring.


Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Warm Wood and White Walls in a BlackHouse

I was browsing through the notes on my laptop when I came across a linked I saved 2 years ago of a house featured on design sponge. I don't remember why I liked this house tour, but I thought I would share it with you. I think it has something to do with this house having all the elements of my dream house I never knew I liked.

Normally I'm not a big fan of different colored couched in the same living room but here I like the grey and turquoise mix because of the different textures.



I love that this couple have memories all over their home, mainly from their honeymoon, bed spreads, towels, rugs. I'd love to bring stuff from my travels to decorate my house. And I'm a total sucker for a wall full of pictures with different frames.

The owner of the house has a line of wood furniture he's selling so you can see some of his pieces in the house, like the coffee table. The mix of white walls and wood essences makes the whole house seem so warm and inviting, something I want for my house too.

 Noticed the tiles?
They even have a speakeasy but this is not my favorite part of the house (although it has some advantages).

When I see a veranda like this I imagine myself watching a summer rain from behind the windows. Incidentally the couch looks a lot like ours. My dream house has a veranda and...

...a California style pool.
And this is the house from outside. I never considered a dark tone for a house but in the end, why not, the inside is so warm and inviting and that is what matters.

Hope you like my choice and do check out the original post on design sponge, here.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Travel ideas: Three Places in Italy I'd like to visit

Last year was a good one for travel: I went all the way to China, something I will tell you more about little by little because I am feeling nostalgic.

This year, with two little ones in tow, it will be difficult to travel but I do like to keep my options open and one of them is Italy. The North part of Italy is more easily accessible for us, hence the pics I chose. Hope you like them. In order : Venice (thinking about Death in Venice?), Florence and Cinque Terre. Sources are on my pinterest page here.

First some travel tips






In case you're wondering what other posts you'll see: the other options are Barcelona and Bordeaux, both close to my in laws in France.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Today's special : Broccoli Cauliflower Gratin

My husband and his work buddies are fit freaks: they like to do a lot of sports and eat healthy. Nothing out of the ordinary unless the sport in question is biking under -20°C. I try to support my guy so whenever I cook for him and the boys at work, I do my best to incorporate the latest food trend they are following. Veggies are always a must and these days they are into coconut oil so I put it in both sweet and salty foods.



The broccoli cauliflower dish is a staple in our kitchen, not because I eat it but because they do :); This time I made a sauce with leek I browned in coconut oil with some salt, pepper and garlic powder. I also added chicken broth and cream. Once cold I mixed it with 4 eggs and poured the whole thing over the steam vegetables. Some (a lot) of cheese on top and voila! The guys had a good, healthy lunch.
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