Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Jars, Jars and more Jars ~ #Reuse #Upcycle #DIY

Since we've become more conscious of the things we purchase, we are purchasing a lot less.
Which is a good thing. But, some items we are purchasing a lot more of.

One of those items is Glass Jars.

Yes, I can probably guess what you are thinking. In my previous Zero Waste posts I've mentioned we will choose Glass Jars (and or Card preferably recycled card) because they are the better option when purchasing Food/Drink
(please note we don't leave near a bulk store.) 
Yes they can be recycled. Glass is the best material that can be recycled, It can be recycled over and over again. But like I've said before, Recycling is always the last option.

Since we have reduced our waste, we are noticing more of what we do dispose of, and we seem to be inundated with glass jars.

We can end up with at least 3 or 4 empty jars a week ~ That might not sound a lot. But, 12 or 16 a month or 156 or 208 glass jars a year is a lot just for the two of us.

So I've been trying to think of away I can Reuse some of these Jars. 

Obviously you can reuse them to store food again 

Garlic and Sesame Seeds stored in glass jars

or to store your Homemade All Purpose Cleaner (Blog post HERE)

I like to bring the outdoors in. So I thought of using them for a plant pots.

In my first Mending, Recycling and Upcycling DIY post HERE

I shared my little plant pots I made from a used Jar.

Since that post, the plants have thrived (please remember to put stones/pebbles at the bottom of the jar for drainage)

Anybody who owns Spider plants knows you can end up with so many.

I'm guessing you know where this is going ;)

I need more plant pots for my spider plants. Instead of purchasing some new pots. I again used my empty jars and upcycled them.

This time I had some Glass paint. My mum got me a set of glass paints a while ago.

I spent an afternoon in crafters heaven :)

I didn't have a plan I just went with it and this is how they turned out.

Instead of using pebbles/stones to put at the bottom for drainage like last time. My mum had some clear stones she no longer wanted.
Because I didn't paint all the way to the bottom of the jar. I think the stones go really well.

The other two are waiting for the spider plants to grow a little bigger :)

At the moment I think I'm on top of the spider plants. So I don't think I need anymore plant pots.

These clear jars are perfect to upcycle because you can decorate them however you please. You can use them to not only store food again but hold Toothbrushes and or Razors in your bathroom, Make up brushes,  Art and craft equipment. The taller jars are great to hold Kitchen Utensils.

Or you can make them into a little light (if you use glass paint).

By using a set of Fairy lights (left jar) or Tea Candle/Light (right jar)

They might not look "perfect" but they definitely look homemade and unique :) and that's the look I was going for.

I really enjoy trying to upcycle as much as I can. Aiming for a zero waste lifestyle has really increased my love of crafting. I know some of you might be thinking that Yes, some of this stuff can be Recycled. But we need to remember that Recycling should be considered as the last resort. Yes, Recycling uses less energy/waste than New but Reuse/Repurpose uses a lot less energy/waste than Recycling.  The best options are always to mend and upcycle.  Plus saving anything from going to Landfill is a must.

I hope I have given you ideas on what you can save/rescue. Not only are we doing our little bit to save the planet with these little things. But, we are also saving money which is great.

Have you made your own Vases/Plant pots? Have you ever upcycled a glass jar? Let me know in the comments below. I would love to know :)

Till next time

Donna x

Like this post? You might like to read: Trash

Monday, 20 June 2016

Morning Workout Routine Update! ~ Fitness Journey

I shared my last morning routine back in February 2015 (blog post Here )  I have changed it since. I've gradually increased my workout and now I think I have got it just right. So I thought it was about time I share my New and improved Morning workout routine.  

I still use my trusty Wii Fit. I like the way it tracks / shows how my balance is doing, like everyone (hopefully :/) some days my balance is so good I surprise myself and some its SHOCKING! Shocking as in BAD shocking. I'm surprised I can stand, lol.

A few months after sharing my first routine, I started noticing the workout was getting easy. Meaning it was going really quick and I was getting bored. So I started adding more Yoga moves into it and then started adding more Muscle moves. After a few more months of re arranging the routine. I think I've finally got it right. For now anyway, until my body again gets used to it or I get bored. At the moment its still a big mix of, 'sometimes the 30 minutes fly by' to 'this 30 minutes feels like hours!'

Inbetween 16 and 17 I add in Extended Puppy Pose, just to give my shoulders a stretch.

My attempt at Extended Puppy Pose

Like I said in my previous routine, I still like to do this workout before I have breakfast. I feel better this way. But that doesn't always happen.
And, My morning workouts are not set in stone. Some mornings I just can't be bothered, Yep.. Can't be bothered. And I will just stick with the Yoga poses for that days Challenges, which can take any time between 15 and 30 mins, depending on if my camera wants to focus or not!!

As long as I start my day off with a good Stretch that's all that matters :)

Do you like to do a workout in the morning?

Till next time

Donna x

Like this post? You might like to read: Be Active

Friday, 10 June 2016

DIY Artwork ~ Spooning since 2000

This little project, even though it took a few hours to do (drying time took most of the time), took months to finally complete it.  I come across this 'Spooning since' on Facebook a while ago and I wanted to do my own one, but I didn't know what or how to do it.

I have a box of plain canvass in my craft stash, so I saved one for it. And I have some letter stickers, which I have had for years. I made sure I had enough letters, so they all would match. I used a Sharpie to colour them in.

I went with black.

This is where it took months to finally complete.

A few months ago my Mr got a cereal box (kelloggs) with a Free Personalised Spoon promotion on it. So I saved the code.  I can't eat Kelloggs cereal and this was also just before we started our Zero Lifestyle. I had to wait for my Mr. and then family members to eat the cereal to get the other codes (overall we needed 6 boxes!!). 

Obviously I only got these spoons because my family members ate the cereal and we had the codes. If they didn't I would've just used normal spoons. I did originally want this to be a "use up what I have" DIY project, being part of my goal to use up my craft stash and don't purchase anything new (see blog post HERE) But that didn't happen. TBH I was hoping the personalisation on the spoons would've been better than what it turned out to be. But I didn't know until we got them. So lesson learnt. In future don't fall for the advertisements and have a go at making your own :).

I made sure the ink was completely dry on the letters before I attempted to peel them off and place them on my canvas.

But I thought it looked a bit too plain. So I decided to make a bow with a piece of ribbon from my stash and glued the bows on to each spoon.

 One blue, one purple

I then very carefully super glued the spoons to the canvas.

I think it looks great

Time: a few hours (drying time)
Money: £3 (spoons)

Everything I used apart from the spoons, I had in my craft stash already. 

Overall I'm really happy with it. Our own little personalised artwork :).

Do you make your own Artwork for your home?

Till next time
Donna x

Like this post? You might like to read: Mirror, Mirror in the Bin

Monday, 6 June 2016

What a difference a year makes ~ May I Begin Yoga ~ Fitness Diary

I was really excited about this months yoga challenge #MayIBeginYoga2016 because its last years challenge.

I know I can compare my yoga poses anytime I want, because I have been doing these challenges for a while now (2 years in August!). But being a years difference its a great way to see the progress.

I was a bit apprehensive that there wasn't going to be much notable progress.
I didn't need to be. 

Not only did I notice improvements in the poses, I also noticed my weight! There is 11lbs weight difference! in each picture.
I'm really happy with the progress I'm making. Even though some are only really small progress. I had to remind myself, I don't practice every single one of these poses daily, some weekly or even monthly. My strength, flexibility, form and balance are improving so much.  I am going in the right direction :).

I don't have a compare picture for Day 7 Easy Pose and Day 31 Relaxation, because there is nothing to compare. And Day 14 Crow/Crane Pose, because I didn't post a picture last year and this year.

Day 1 Downward Facing Dog

Day 2 Plank

Day 3 Chaturanga Dandasana

Day 4 Upward Facing Dog

Day 5 Warrior 1

Day 6 Warrior 2

Day 8 Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana 

Day 9  Tree Pose

Day 10 Triangle Pose

Day 11 Chair Pose
Day 12 Prasarita Padottanasana C

Day 13 Boat Pose

Day 15 Padangusthasana

Day 16 Baddha Konasana A

Day 17 Parsvakonasana \ Extended Side Angle

Day 18 Janu Sirsasana A

Day 19 Bow Pose

Day 20 Marichasana A

Day 21 Side Plank

Day 22 Warrior 3

Day 23 Lord of Half Fishes Pose

Day 24 Camel Pose

Day 25 Low Lunge

Day 26 Reverse Plank

Day 27 Seated Forward Fold

Day 28 Tripod Headstand

Day 29 Dolphin Pose

Day 30 Pasvottanasana

I also took part in two other challenges #YogaQuickies and #Yoga4Growth

Here are my attempts at each pose.

My favourite progress as got to be the Camel Pose

I still remember my first attempt at this pose, back in August 2014. It was the first month of doing these yoga challenges . I remember my Quads! O M Geee the stretch in my quads was so bad and I could JUST reach back and grab one foot and that was a "quick take a picture" moment because I couldn't hold the pose. I also remember thinking how on earth am I going to be able to do this pose.

Now in 2016 I've noticed how flexible my back is getting. I still feel a little stretch in my quads, but its a comfortable stretch.

I'm so happy they repeated this Yoga Challenge.
I've said in a few other posts, taking pictures throughout your fitness journey is one of the best ways to track your progress, whether its form or Fatloss. Its one of the best decisions I made. I really didn't think I made as much progress as I have until I compared the pictures. It really is great motivation. 

Progress is Progress ~ Rome wasn't built in a day :)

How's your fitness journey going? Do you join in with yoga challenges?

Till next time

Donna x

Like this post? You might like to read: Aprils Fitness Diary