Wednesday, November 09, 2016


Next week two months ago my parents and I set off on a trip to Zakynthos, a beautiful Greek island. Mom and dad gave me this trip as a graduation gift. What better gift than exploring a beautiful holiday destination? Or so my parents seemed to think (and read my mind) :-)
Right now I'm sitting inside, drinking green tea, bundled in layers of clothing for maximum warmth. Outside al leaves have changed color and if it weren't for the rain I'd be going for a fall walk. But here I am, typing a new blogpost letting the magic of reminiscing do its work in the hope of feeling a little warmer inside.
Last week I finished my travel video of our week in Zakynthos that I would like to share here on Truly Mar. It is short, it is sweet. I hope you enjoy!

Click here if you cannot watch the video!


Thursday, October 27, 2016


Yesterday evening I did something I wanted to for quite some time. I made a video!

Basically what I did was the following: I edited a video from shots I took half a year ago.... #shameonme, then I uploaded it on YouTube and shared links to it on Instagram and Twitter so all my friends and family (and Maylows followers) could see it. I absolutely love photography but videography is also something I have the hots for, haha. You can imagine how much I enjoyed producing this short movie starring Maylow, the best dog in the world! A little about him: Maylow is a four-year-old Border Collie living with my boyfriend and his family. He's the best friend you could wish for! Hope you enjoy watching! And did you know you can follow Maylow on Instagram and Twitter too?
Click here if you cannot watch the video!

I would like to do more with video, editing and YouTube because I absolutely enjoy doing those things. Next to that, I think it's important to always keep learning and growing and sometimes you can be your own teacher :-). 
What kind of videos would you like to see on my blog or YouTube channel? Let me know!

With love,


Monday, October 24, 2016


Up until one week ago we were spoilt with the warmest fall weather here in the Netherlands. It really felt more like summer. But that changed and today was truly a Dutch fall day: dark, grey and cold! In other words: time to start wearing all those newly bought fall items! One thing I should mention is that surprisingly, there was not a drop of rain all day. Perfect circumstances for a photo shoot if you ask me! I asked my mom if she had time to shoot a couple of outfit photos. Shortly after we cycled to a nearby park where some of the trees are already getting beautiful orange and red colors. I love it!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


After my graduation I was spoilt rotten by my family. My brother handed me a beautifully wrapped white box full of Rituals products that I'd never tried before. Nothing makes me happier! The box contained a shower foam, a shower oil and a body cream all belonging to the same fragrance line named The Ritual of Karma. "Practice the art of good karma with our new summer limited edition collection. According to ancient Hindu belief, living with good intent attracts positive karma. Say good words; think good thoughts; do good deeds and good will come your way."

I've been using these products for a couple of months now and today after I was done showering I felt the need to tell you about it. First things first: you will find the packaging absolutely brilliant if you love mint green combined with rose gold. I know I do! Both the appearance as wel as the light sweet smell of holy lotus and bergamot will provoke the illusion of being in a luxury resort. I just use these products in my own bathroom. Light some odorless candles, put on some background music... There you go :-).

Shower foam full of kindness
This is the product I use most out of all three. I was already familiar with this type of shower foam. I just think it gives such a nice feeling, add a little water and it almost feels like satin mousse on your skin. You only need a small amount to cover your entire body. Hence the fact that I have been using these products since the end of July.

Blissful shower oil
This is the product that I was most excited to try when I just got it. Simply because I'd never tried it before. The shower oil brings more nourishment to your skin because of its ingredients such as soy oil, castor seed oil and sunflower seed oil. It also becomes foam like once you add water. Massage it into your skin and leave it there for a little bit before you rinse off. Feels good, doesn't it?!

Soul shimmering body cream
Your skin primarily needs to be hydrated from the inside out. But I'm convinced it doesn't hurt to care for your exterior with this body cream. I'm trying to make a new habit of using this body cream every time after I've taken a shower. Eventually it will feel like second nature and that's because it takes 21 days to create new habits. Keep that in mind when you're setting new intentions. Oh and let's not forget about the subtle shimmer this body cream leaves all over your body. Put some on when you're wearing your favorite off the shoulder dress!

I don't remember the exact prices but I do know that these products are more expensive than your average body cream. But, I promise you it's an absolute treat. When you're taking good care of your body, your mind will naturally benefit. I absolutely love Rituals. In the first place because they make products with the world in mind. Did you know Rituals is a non-animal-testing brand?

Ps. I just found out that The Ritual of Karma collection was literally 2016's limited summer edition. That means that you will no longer be able to find the products I mentioned on the official Rituals website. I have high hopes that this collection will make a comeback next year. Until then it might be a good idea to take a look at the current limited edition: The Ritual of Light. Update: a girl on Instagram commented on my photo saying these products will be available in the sale! So keep your open for that!

Thursday, September 15, 2016


Are you going on holiday soon? Or did you just get back? Start planning a new trip just so you can look forward to exploring a new place! But first continue reading down below as I am telling you my top 10 of favorite activities Daniel and I did on our Croatia holiday! The examples I'm giving in this post can be easily adjusted to your dream destination so keep on reading even when you're headed somewhere else!

In the first installment of my travel guide, which went up last week, I talked to you about places to stay in Croatia. We decided to do both rooms/zimmers, hotels and campsites to keep everything really affordable but there is plenty of choice if you’re looking for hotels as well. So go check that out if you haven't already!

Today I'm posting part two - what to do in Croatia?! I will share my 10 favorite activities with tips and tricks so you can do activities you will never forget!

1 - Jump in a mountain river
Forget about swimming pools and the Adriatic for a second. Ice cold mountain rivers are the next best thing. The water is incredibly clear and totally refreshing. And unlike sea water, this clean water won't make you feel sticky once you've dried up. Funny story: Daniel and I left our swim shorts and bikini in the car on our walk through Paklenica National Park. So when we bumped into this beautiful swimming spot he gave me his tanktop that fits me like a mini dress and I swam in it :-).

Friday, September 02, 2016


In the beginning of this year Daniel and I decided we wanted to fill in our holiday a little bit different than what we're used to. Our plan? Driving through Europe as opposed to our usual holiday by plane. Direction? Croatia. Ultimate goal? Reaching Dubrovnik! Nicknamed ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’, the city lies over 1850 kilometers from my hometown! As you can imagine, a thrilling voyage for two twentysomething soulmates :-).

A couple of months ago, we started reading (more) into the Balkans history, researching activities, pinning inspiring images on our shared Croatia Pinterest board, and drawing up a map full of icons at certain locations in Google Maps. This way, we had some idea of the places we wanted to visit and this made it easier to figure out our next move once we crossed the Croatian border. We had been playing with the idea of a roadtrip in our heads since the end of 2015 but ended up booking accommodations only 10 days in advance. As in, places to spend the first two nights. For the other nights we figured we would see once we arrived at our destination. Adventures, baby!
Accidentally bumped into this cool green oasis in the heart of Split

Monday, July 18, 2016


Today I am devoting a post to my current favorite book. It's 'The Bingo Theory' written by Mimi Ikonn. About three years ago I came across a video on YouTube. I was searching for cute but easy hairstyles and in the video Mimi and her sister Leyla were showing me how to achieve just that! Ever since I've been hooked to the videos they make. It's like watching your favorite series on Netflix but online and much more personal. So when Mimi announced that she was writing a book I couldn't wait to hear more about it. The only thing I knew was that it was about relationships...

Long had I been subscribed through so I would be one of the first people to know about the launch of Mimi's book. About two months ago it was finally there! I opened up the book and read it cover to cover in a couple of days as it was hard to put the book down. Go ahead and read on to find out what I think of the book and if you should read it too!?

The Bingo Theory
The book tries to break through a more traditional view of what a man and a woman should be. I think it's very successful in doing so. From the first view pages on it is very clear that we should keep in mind that even though there are two so-called 'camps' we always possess both strength energies: the masculine energy and the feminine energy. If you manage to balance out the two energies you are a bingo. Only when you are in balance you will be able to provide what your bingo partner needs. You cannot wait for someone else to fill up the parts that you lack. That will never work. And I am a firm believer of that. Also, the little testst in the beginning of the book make it more playful and airy. Cool to do this test with your close family members and friends!
What I personally loved is that with this book Mimi puts everything completely in a different perspective. And what I thought at first, me being a masculine strength female, is not the case. Even though a lot of my characteristics are masculine, my strongest and most dominant energy is the feminine one!

Another thing I would like to add is that there are two videos on the Bingo Theory as well. One on Mimi's own channel and the other one on Alex', her husband, channel:
1. 'What is THE BINGO THEORY? Interview with Mimi Ikonn about her book.'
Both videos on YouTube are a real plus in my eyes! After watching the video, the whole story came even more alive.

All in all: a must read in my eyes! I think this book makes a great gift to yourself, your friend, parents or co-worker. So what are you waiting for? :-)

If you'd like to know more about the book; I also wrote a review on both Goodreads and Amazon where you can read tons of other opinions too. I got my copy of the book on Amazon for $17,96 and it came in the mail about ten days later. I also ordered the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho so expect a review on that book on Truly Mar next week!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016


Every once in a while you gotta make that change. For once in your life. It's gonna feel real good, it's gonna make a difference and maybe make it right! Okay I'll admit that I was just simply citing the King of Pop here. But it's the truth and nothing but the truth. Whenever you make an adaption in your life, no matter how small or big, it will affect your heart and mind.
That is why after a long period of doing research for my graduation assignment I decided to lighten up my long locks! After countless hours on Pinterest I went to the salon and I brought some pictures along to show the hairdresser exactly what I had in mind. I'm sure that a lot of you have already seen my hair change on Instagram or in real life but I really wanted to capture my hair on Truly Mar because it is such a big part of me. So here are some pictures I took over the last two weeks.

With boxer braids and my panama hat
With loose wavy curls
With a Dutch side braid

I'm loving this new color. It's perfect for the warmer months to come and all my old clothes look as new thanks to the lighter hair. What do you think? Let me know in the comments down below or visit my Instagram @marjoleinevelien



Thursday, June 09, 2016


OMG yess finally! I have received my dream sandals! You're probably sick of me talking on and on about pompom sandals by now. First I talked about how I wanted them. Then I told you guys I thought they weren't gonna be of any use in the Dutch weather climate. And now I'm telling you that I found the perfect pair, purchased them and haven't taken them off ever since!
Put on your best summer outfit and rock these sandals! I paired them with my favorite yellow dress. I love how the dress is completely uniform in color. The colorful pompom sandals create a nice contrast. Oh I am in love! These gorgeous sandals are by the brand Gioseppo. I got them online through
Unfortunately they are kind of really out of stock right now. I had the same problem when I first saw them. Which is why I subscribed so they could send me an e-mail when they had restocked. The beads, the pompoms, the perfect fit! What's not to love? Oh and they cost about €50 so that's not too bad either :-)


Tuesday, May 24, 2016


Hi, it's me! Still know who I am? I won't blame you if you don't! You see, I've been so absent over the last couple of months that I would be more suprised if you did know and were impatiently waiting for a new post ever since. I couldn't find the motivation and time to write. The main reason was me having a lot of other activities/things going on that I made priorities without thinking twice about it.
I can't promise anything but I will definitely try to post more regularly the coming weeks. But who am I kidding? I don't have a (huge) following so I can basically post whenever I want. Nobody will judge me or be disappointed when I don't post for weeks in a row. I know from experience. But what I also know is that in order to grow as a writer, in order to grow as a blogger there needs to be some sort of regular practice and there needs to be some sort of clearness as to when people can expect a post and also what those posts might entail. Not exactly, but it's good when people know what kind of subjects you will touch on.

That being said. I'm writing this post to help myself and hopefully others in the struggle that is called planning your blog posts. Well technically the planning part isn't so hard. It is the executive part that needs to be done.

A few things to consider as they might be different to everyone:

- WHY are you blogging? Always start with the why as this is the most important question you could ever ask yourself. (Classmates of  mine will probably experience déjà vu moments or throw up right now as alarm bells start ringing when Simon Sinek/Ted Talk/Golden Circle slowly come to mind.) But on a more serious note, asking yourself the why question can be applied to any aspect of your life. Try it sometime. Once you've established what it is that motivates you to start blogging you can work from there.

- What is your long term goal? Start with your most important long term goal. If you have more and you can't choose which one is your main goal that's fine too. As long as you have a simple and clear focus on what you want to achieve in the long run.

- What is your short term goal? You might have more short term goals. Pen them all down and make a top five.

- How much time do you want to spend on your blog? A blog is more than just writing a few lines every now and then. Think about brainstorming, writing good texts, taking photos, marketing your blog into the world etc.

- How much time are you going to put into a single post? This can differ. Not every post needs as many words as another.

Once you've answered these questions, the next step is to plan out week by week the moments you are going to work on your blog and when you want to make your posts public!

The key is to write it all down. When it's on paper, it becomes real and you will be more likely to stick with it. For example: on Monday I will spend 2 hours on my new blogpost. On Tuesdau morning I will photograph the subject of my new blogpost. On Wednesday I put them together and online. I also make sure to post on my social media accounts so people know I have a new post they can read.

The social accounts that I use to promote a new post are Bloglovin, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Pinterest. In that order. Because I always use the first three and I sometimes use Snapchat and Pinterest too. If you really wanna grow as a blogger, you gotta put in the work. You can plant the seeds, but you need to water it often, preferably every day in order to grow.

What is your number 1 tip for beginning bloggers?

Monday, March 21, 2016



Saturday, February 20, 2016


The Grand Place with on the left City Hall


Monday, February 08, 2016


This might just be the easiest recipe I have ever posted. But that doesn't mean it's boring. Look at all the colorful ingredients. This lunch idea makes me super happy! I'm going to divide this recipe into two parts. First we're making a tomato salsa! This will be one of the mail fillers of the quinoa bowl. But because the salsa needs a little extra preparation and because it can be eaten by itself, it deserves a little more attention.

Thursday, February 04, 2016


I've known about Burt's Bees for the longest time. Remember when I was around 12 years old going into town with one of my best girl friends. We only had the littlest amount of pocket money and so buying something was way more special than it is nowadays. We put a lot of thought into what we were going to buy and we were prepared to first visit all stores in town that sold the product we wanted before actually purchasing one. This way we could decide where it was most profitable #cheapskates . This one time my friend got a lip balm by Burt's Bees and I really wanted one to but I sticked with my good old Labello.
 I'm not sure why but I never got around to trying Burt's Bees products. Until yesterday. The kit I got was on sale for €12,95 now which made this the perfect opportunity to try out Burt's Bees products for the first time. What I love about this brand is how they've perfected their story to the bone. When a company adds their history to the product, it's not always one that interests me but Burt's Bees story is a crazy cool authentic one:

"Beekeeper Burt was selling honey from the back of his truck. But fate had other ideas for our co-founder. It was the summer of '84, and Maine artist Roxanne Quimby was thumbing a ride home (back when you could still do that sort of thing). Eventually a bright yellow Datsun pickup truck pulled over, and Roxanne instantly recognized Burt Shavitz, a local fella whose beard was almost as well-known as his roadside honey stand. Burt and Roxanne hit it off, and before long, Roxanne was making candles with unused wax from Burt's beehives. They made 200 dollars at their first craft fair; within a year, they'd make 20.000 dollars. Pretty auspicious beginning, but just the beginning all the same. From those first candles to the iconic beeswax lip balm we all know today, Burt's Bees has stayed true to a very simple idea: what you put on your body should be made from the best nature has to offer. We invite you to stick out a thumb and follow us on our uncommon journey, it's been one heckuva ride." 
This Burt's Bees Kit contains a little booklet with its brand story and product information along with the five products:
- Burt's Bees soap bark & chamomile deep cleansing cream
- Burt's Bees coconut foot cream
- Burt's Bees milk & honey body lotion
- Burt's Bees hand salve
- Burt's Bees beeswax lip balm

Burt's Bees now sells over 180 products, all guided by a single principle: Nature has the best answers. On average, our products are 99% natural and over half our products are 100% natural. Our relationship with nature defines and inspires us every day. We make people's lives better every day, naturally.

I've already tried the hand salve and the beeswax lip balm and the first thing that I noticed was the incredible smell. Peppermint! So good! I love supporting brands that use sustainable all natural ingredients and I can't wait to try the other products from the kit. What is your favorite product by Burt's Bees? I'm guessing mine is gonna be the lip balm!


Wednesday, February 03, 2016


I know I already have a blogpost on my favorite black bag. But you gotta understand this is my NEW favorite black bag. And it totally looks like it could be one of Stella McCartney it-bag designs. Good reason for this post, right?! ;) Wait until you hear how little I paid for this black beauty!
So I went into town the other week and I was about to pay for a white coat (will be up soon!) when something inside me told me to take a quick look at the accessories section which is situated downstairs at the mens department. And there it was. Almost as if it was waiting for me, the last of its kind. My new black bag. To me it very much resembles Stella McCartney's iconic Falabella range of bags. Absolutely loving its chain trim (Stella McCartney sprinkles with chains like I do with maple syrup over my granola) and the fabric looks but doesn't feel like faux suede. Edgy meets elegance!
I first saw the Falabella bags on Stella's instagram and later on over at Mimi Ikonns account who loves supporting Stella because the brand is cruelty-free (bonus points!) Completely fell in love until I saw the prices at which these bags are sold at. I cannot afford that amount of money at this point in my life, I am a student after all, and I am still in doubt if I would ever pay this much for a bag but I just might. Someday...
I'm not a big fan of copying but taking inspiration from high-end fashion designers is definitely something I would encourage! I want to stress that this is a look-alike in my eyes and definitely not a dupe. And I'm also not a big fan of dupes but look-alikes often take inspiration from the real deal without plain copying. I think the bag I bought looks most like a mix between the Falabella Purse and Shaggy Deer Crossbody Bag. I plan on wearing this a lot. It's also the perfect way to decide if you're really sure about splurging on that designer bag you've been eyeing: first try a more affordable but similar bag.

Black bag by NewYorker| €16,95 €9,95 via New Yorker (can you believe it?!)


Thursday, January 28, 2016


Back in December I was one of three lucky ladies to win a make-over by beauty brand Pupa Milano. Owner of the Miss Netherlands Organization Kim Kötter hosted a giveaway on her Facebook page which I entered and ta-da! My name was one of the cheerful chosen ones. While I'd heard a lot about Pupa, I had never actually tried any of their products before. Simply because they're not being sold in your everyday drugstore. But I was definitely interested in learning more about their products and creating a whole new look.
May the wings of your eyeliner always be even! My right eye was already done by a pro. So guess what it was like trying to get my eyes even, haha!
Last Friday was the day of the Miss-Workshop. Very early in the morning I cycled to the train station #nomakeup and all that, hopped on a train and I was on my way to Dordrecht where I took a bus to the industrial area of the city where the headquarters of Pupa Milano Netherlands are situated. It took me 2 hours and 45 minutes, which was a pretty long journey compared to the size of the Netherlands (let alone the distance I had to travel). And of course my train was delayed which caused me to arrive 30 minutes later. Bummer! If there is anything I dislike, it's being late at an appointment. Luckily during my long train ride I had a Classic Chai Tea latte from Starbucks, Ellie Gouldings Delirium and #Girlboss to keep me company.

Upon arriving I was welcomed by two lovely girls at the front desk and one of them brought me upstairs to where the workshop was taking place. The other workshop winners were already there and after a short introduction by make-up artist Fanny and a conversation with the other attendees, we started right off!
Posing with lovely Fanny :)

I took a lot of photos. Wait, let me rephrase that. WE took a lot of photos. As it turned out, I wasn't the only one taking pictures during the day. One of the employees at Care Cosmetics, Rebecca, came in with a camera (and the most gorgeous red lips!) and she started taking photos of everything that was going on in the room. Her colleague send me the photographs and in this post I chose a combination of the ones she took and the pictures taken with my own camera.In the beginning of the day it crossed my mind how cool it would be to have before and after photos. But I only thought of this when I had already put on primer + foundation. Just so you know when you look at the next before and after photos. It's not an entirely fair before, haha.

Before & After
Next to taking photographs I also made notes in the training manual for advanced (oh yeah) on everything that Fanny told us #informationoverload. I wrote down all the product names and the number of the correct shades. Also made a lot of notes about the proper way to apply make-up, what brushes to use, how to fill up your eyebrows, what colors match your skin and much more. It was kindof addicting to hear so many cool things about beauty products. Especially tips and tricks that were completely new to me but are easy to apply when doing make-up in the morning in your own home. For example she taught me what kind of face shape I have, the shape of my eyes and the colors of my skin tone.
Some extra love for number 204 and 205

The colors in the eyeshadow collection are really beautiful compared to some of the drugstore eye make-up I own. I think it is because the colors are exactly the same on your eyelid as they are in the pans. The high pigmentation makes it easy to build up on your eye look without having to use a lot of product. Numbers 204 and 205 are now super high on my make-up wishlist! The purple stands on the exact opposite of the color green which is my eye color.

Fun fact: apparently the word Pupa means 'Little Doll' which is what the Italian founder of Pupa called his own daughter when he made her a make-up kit back in the day.

Face shape
I have an oval shaped lower part, whereas my forehead is more rectangular. To create the ideal face shape, which is said to be oval, one needs to learn the basics of contouring! Dark, matte make-up shades recede, while lighter, shinier colors bring features forward. I've never been too fond of my larger forehead but over the last years I've come to grown and love this interesting feature in my face. But hearing there is nothing make-up can't fix, had me prick my ears up. Fanny told me this: "When you blend your matte contour shade along the hairline of your forehead in a shade darker than your foundation, it will create the impression of a smaller forehead. It's extremely important to blend thoroughly so your make-up looks natural."

Eye shape
She also told me about the shape of my eyes. A persons eyes are never exactly the same. Once you determine your eye shape you can start applying make-up to enhance your shape and even try to make your eyes look more similar. I have upturned and deep set eyes. This means that I have a natural lift in the outer corner. Also my eye color is green with a dark grey circle around the iris. To accentuate the green in my eyes, I could work with a lot of purple colors which is what we did. It was fun to hear that Fanny actually has similar shaped eyes so she know really well how to make this eye shape really stand out!
Skin tone
My skin's surface tone is light and the undertone is warm and slightly yellow. When I applied the primer it was a neutral one but when I left the building at the end of the day she gave me a purple/pink primer to even out the yellowness. I don't have a lot of blemishes but my under eyes could use some concealer. It was early this morning! Haha...

Did you know that Pupa Milano is a brand a lot of make-up artists use? Eva Jinek is also a big fan of Pupa! She always wears Pupa on her shows.
The best part of the day was when Fanny announced we got to pick 5 products from the entire Pupa make-up collection to take home with us. I seriously didn't know what to choose. Everything Fanny had advised and used on my skin was so good. The pigmentation, the colors... I honestly didn't know what to choose so I started going through my notes of the day and I figured that I should go for the products I absolutely loved!
Eventually I went for a primer, foundation, eyebrow cream, bronzer and blush. And I have been wearing these products every day over the last week! I will review these products somewhere over the coming weeks but I'm going to try the products out for a few weeks first. It was packed in the cutest red bag which I proudly carried around on the bus, on the train and on my bicycle until I was home.
With beautiful Kim

All in all this day was awesome! Not only did I learn a lot of new things about applying make-up, my face-shape, eyebrows, eye-shape and contouring. I also experienced this day to be a lot of fun! First of all, Fanny is an extremely talented make-up artist. Next to that she was really sweet and gentle. The other two workshop winners were also friendly and so were the ladies who took photographs, brought us lunch and prepared our Pupa giftbags! And obviously it was really cool when Kim Kötter surprised us with a visit!
Such a lovely group to be around for the day. Thanks ladies for making this day great.
It was super cool when Kim walked through the door unannounced! She looks absolutely amazing pregnant and is very down to earth and sweet.
Happy faces late in the afternoon. Not just because everybody looked absolutely stunning but also because of what was given to us. Nobody went home before these cute little red bags by Pupa were given to each and everyone of us. Filled up with the products of our choosing. It even included an official make-up workshop certificate. How cool is that? I might just hang it above my bed. And Fanny used a lip pencil on me that apparently is no longer in the collection and she was kind enough to gift me the one she used on me which was practically a new one. So sweet! Be sure to keep an eye out for my post about the Pupa make-up that I took home with me. And Pupa Milano, thank you for having me and see you next time!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016


About two weeks ago the postman brought me a package that I had been waiting for impatiently. It contained a cookbook I had ordered online with my grandmothers birthday money. I’m talking about Mimi Ikonn’s Healthy & Delicious cookbook

So that was in the beginning of January. In the meantime I’ve had the chance to try out a few of the recipes already and let me tell you this: there are so many fun and easy recipes in this cookbook… it’s unbelievable! There are 57 recipes in the categories: Breakfast, Sides, Soups, Salads, Mains, Desserts and Drinks. Recipes for any time of day and any occasion. All of them are gluten, dairy, and sugar-free. I’ve never been tested on gluten allergies but I strongly believe I do have some sort of intolerance. If you're avoiding dairy, these recipes all work for you. Personally, I love dairy and I incorporate yogurt, quark and cheese in my daily diet. There is definitely natural sugars in this book such as those coming from banana’s, honey, vanilla extract and medjool dates. Easy recipes that will make you look and feel great. Yummy!
I am a big fan of the book because everything is completely vegetarian. Next to that, I find that the ingredients are relatively easy to find in your local grocery store or market. Nothing crazy that you need to order online. And the fact that the meals are simple, makes it easier to whip up a batch of your favorite cookies because it doesn’t take up a lot of your time. I do have to get used to the fact that you can eat vegetables for breakfast. I mean, I knew I could of course but it hasn’t yet become a habit of mine. I can’t wait to try them all out! I have already made the Pizza Omelet, Avocado Breakfast Platter (but I had it for lunch), the Almond Flour Cookies and just now: Baked Banana’s! So far it all was indeed very healthy & delicious. Unless you eat the whole batch all in one go obviously! Everything in moderation J.
Now let’s talk about the photography for a bit. I don’t wanna give away too much but the food and prop styling by Mimi Ikonn is awesome. The colors, the contrast... you can almost smell the delicious meals coming from the pages! I read that Dave Chang is responsible for the gorgeous mouthwatering photographs. Well done!
 If I had to name a downside of the cookbook I think it would be the price. Yes all the recipes are carefully written down and the photography is beautiful! But it’s a pretty expensive cookbook if you compare it to others from the same sort. Seeing as I’m looking forward to making every single recipe in the book it’s been a good buy for me. Also, I totally adore Mimi for the fact that 25% of the book sales proceeds will be donated to feeding homeless people. Do good, feel good!

Mimi's Healthy & Delicious cookbook |
$35 via Mimi's website link

Tuesday, January 19, 2016


A lucky girl?
Have you ever felt like the wind pushed you in the exact direction of your choosing? I used to think that I was always a very lucky girl. At times it felt like the high grades in school, travel opportunities and part-time jobs were just handed to me on a silver platter. I got all those things going for me and it was so easy. I never felt like I had to work exorbitantly hard in order to achieve something I wanted. I was being myself. I was being exactly the person that I still am today. Only older and maybe, just maybe a little wiser.
The generally accepted definition of luck: success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one's own actions. I believe that this type of luck only happens sometimes and that a person's own actions are much more important than one might think. Scroll all the way to the end of this post to see what definition I find much more apposite.

Work hard play hard?
When I say I didn’t work exorbitantly hard, I mean that I did what I felt was necessary. I always listened to my heart when choices had to be made. I was always at the right place at the right time. At least, that’s what it felt like. It felt like I had no influence on the outcome but that I better be happy about it because I was lucky and it could’ve happened to anyone, especially people who were more eager to get the same opportunities I was given. Nowadays I don’t look at things that way anymore.

No Secret
My positive outlook on life has brought me certain things that I wouldn’t have accomplished otherwise. And while all of this might sound very The Secret to you, I know that the mind is a powerful tool. The way you set the mind can make all the difference in the world. I know a lot of people think the subject is a bit woozy but I promise you that it all makes sense once you apply it to aspects of your own life.

So yeah, I do believe that in a lot of cases luck plays a part in the outcome of a certain situation. I found that there are so many elements in our lives that are simply uncontrollable. Whether or not it's going to rain in those five minutes you spend riding your bike. If the numbers on your lottery ticket are a golden combination which is bound to make you rich. However, a person’s own actions can give direction and are much more important than depending on chance.

Let me give you an example: last year all students of my year had to find a suitable minor for one full semester. All the fun and exciting minors were most popular. When registration day came it was chaos. It wasn't peculiar in any way to think that I wouldn't get in because 160 students had applied while only 25 were allowed to participate in the minor I had set my sights on: Brand Management. And so it happened that I was sent a rejection e-mail. 15 days before the start of the minor was the day I found out somebody had dropped out last minute. I took his place. While it might look like I was very lucky to have gotten the last and very scarce place during the last week before the start of the minor, a lot had been going on behind the scenes. The minute I heard students were being chosen at random I knew I had to do something. I sent an e-mail to the secretary explaining my dedication and I told her I was hoping she would let me know if anyone dropped out. I didn't have any influence on whether or not someone would drop out but I did have a say in who was gonna fill up the empty spot if someone did. To me it is important that you give some credit to actions you’ve taken in life. Both consciously and unconsciously. 

Good things happen to… people
People who we often regard as lucky are more laid-back and open to the world around them. The trick they apply is not being focused on a single task, while blocking out everything else so much that they miss something unexpected and perhaps important! It all begins and ends with your mind. Maybe luck isn’t simply luck, but whether or not our mindset leaves us open to opportunities we would otherwise miss...

 "Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity."
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