Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas Crafts: DIY Wreath, Holiday Baskets, Homemade Granola, Yearly Ornaments

Ok, I should be doing 10000 things other than blogging right now, but I always do these things, take all the pictures and then never blog about it...so here is a short and sweet and picture filled blog post with what I have been up to the past couple of weeks!


I bought a twig wreath from Michaels

Bought some pinecones and ribbon from target, pine boughs and berries from a flower store
 Moseby tried to eat EVERYTHING

 I placed everything to figure out the way I wanted to look

 I started glueing the boughs, and using some ornament ties. I created a layered look to hide the glue.

I added the berries by tucking them into the twig wreath with ornament metal thingies

I added pinecones on top to cover the metal clips

I made a bow out of the wreath by wrapping it around a piece of cardboard 3 times, and tying it together with another piece of ribbon
 Tadaaa: Finished product!

Time spent: 1 hr, Money spent ~25 bucks. 


After realizing that holiday baskets cost a million dollars I made my own. 

I bought the pinecone sticks, the birch stick and the red berries. I then stole used downed branches and sticks from a local park and busted out the spray paint. Guys, I was so excited to spray paint, you don't even know. I now have a spray paint tarp and everything. 

I then bought some dollar store planters, and some sand and stuck everything in the sand. Pretty darn simple. 

I also added the same stolen  found branches to decorate the stairwell. I added red balls to the bannister, and ice lights. I also went to the dollar store and bought GIANT Christmas ornaments and hung them all over the tree.

So Christmas-y!

Time spent ~2 hrs, money spent ~$75 (for two baskets, and outdoor decorations)


I made granola for a few gifts based on the recipe from Elizabeth Ryder's website with a few changes: 

2 cups raw oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped dried apples
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp coconut or olive oil
1 tbsp unsweeted coconut
1/2 tsp of vanilla extract

Mix together, and place on a baking sheet. Bake at 300 degrees for 8-10 minutes. 

I bought some green mason jars and labels and ribbon and dolled up my jars. Moseby helped.

Time spent ~1hr, Money spent, same as normal baking, add a few jars


Since we moved to Toronto I have started making yearly ornaments using sharpies, paint, and sticky letters to document big things that happened in the year. 

2011- Move to Toronto
2012- Trip to Paris (bought this one, added the 2012)
2013- Got Tesla, went to Vegas, did Triathlons/duathalons
2014- Got engaged and bought our first house!  

This year I couldn't find a plan coloured ornament, so I did the painted ornament technique with a clear one. Basically dumped in some paint and water, and swirled it around to cover the inside. It turned out nice and blue! I let it dry over night, and then added the date and drawing. 

Time spent <15 mins per ornament, Money spent <5 dollars per ornament..but the memories are priceless...d'awwww.

I blogged about this before in more detail back in 2011.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!!

Other holiday posts:

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Merry Fitness! Workout Ideas From Me to You!

As mentioned in the last post I'm doing a fitness advent calendar for the month of December!
Day 2!

As promised (although it is one day late) here is a sample of exercises for each type of workout:


Pretty self explanatory.
  • Hot Yoga (Bikram)
  • Yoga (Goodlife)
  • Body Flow (goodlife)- Mixture of Tai Chi, Pilates, and Yoga
  • At home yoga workout (like this)


For strength workouts, I will probably do a set full body workout or do upper body and abs, or lower body and abs. I will include a warm up and cool down if required. 


Mixture of light weights and cardio, I will include a warm up/cool down. 
30 seconds of each exercise
For 45 min workout complete 5 min warm up, 2x 3 sets, 4 min cool down/stretch

Set 1
Dumbbell row in held lunge
Alternating side lunge with reverse flye
Dive bomber pushup (Downward dog to pushup)
C-2 min
Jump jack/squat/side touch ground
Mountain climbers
A-1 min
Windshield wipers
Hands and Knees leg extension
Set 2
Wood chops
Plank with row
Sumo squat with shoulder press
C-2 min
Knee Runs
A-1 min
Russian Twists
Set 3
Medicine ball alternating pushup
Single leg dip with arm curl
C-2 min
Skis/split jump
A-1 min


Cardio can be tough this time of year, here are some options, I'm going to include a stretch/cooldown after. 
  • Fitness Dance Classes-Zumba, Body Jam,Sh'Bam (Goodlife)
  • Body Attack/Body Combat (Goodlife)
  • Spin Class
  • Treadmill interval run
    • 5 min warm up
    • 1 min 6
    • 1 min 7 
    • 1 min 6
    • 1 min 8
    • 1 min 6 
    • 1 min 9
    • Repeat runs until tired (Alternatively Run to random music, and adjust the speed to match the song. Great sample: "That power", slow for the JB part, and fast for the will.i.Am part.) 
  • Cardio "Tri" Circuit (20 mins Elliptical, 20 Minutes Bike, 20 mins Run)
  • Hill Treadmill workout
  • Swimming, Skating, Dancing, Running, Soccer etc. (Any Cardio outside the gym)

Active Rest Day

On the Active Rest Days I'm going to try to at least get 10,000 steps from walking. Alternatively, this could also include a very easy stretch/yoga routine.