If you know me, then you know I love sweets. Chocolate? Yes. Gummy bears? Yes. Orange slices? Yes. Caramel? OMG YES.
I also like fresh cut flowers. They make the room smell soooo good.
Jewellery. Yeah I could get behind that.
Gifts. Surprises. Cards filled with love? Of course I love those things! But it's not really a surprise when everyone is giving gifts on the same day. It changes from 'Is he going to get me something?' to 'What is it going to be? I had better get a gift!'. Gifts and presents become insincere. A 'have to' instead of a 'want to'.
I'm not one to boycott Valentine's Day or say it's stupid or pointless. I'm all for it! Yeah, let's celebrate love.
But I want to celebrate love every. Single. Day. Including Valentine's Day, and even when that day is finished. Celebrate on a Wednesday or in May or for no reason. And I don't mean that this is just for your husband, wife or significant other. Celebrate your friends, parents, or other family members. Don't forget your pets, they love you more than they love themselves. Celebrate more often with a random card or gift. Send a hello to someone you haven't talked to in a while. Spoil yourself with a long bath or mani pedi. Take that puppy for a walk that's just a little bit longer next time or give your pets a Valentine's Day bath like I did! Leave a note for a coworker. Send a letter by pony mail. Give your mailman some chocolates, and if you buy them on the 15th they will be discounted! Smile to the cashier. It doesn't have to be expensive. Sometimes the best gifts are free, like holding hands in the cold or helping someone find something in the grocery store.
My point is, I love Valentine's Day because it makes you take time to recognise the people you care about in your life. But I also love random acts of kindness and love on other days as well, and to me, sometimes those are even better.
Take time to tell someone you love them and/or appreciate them today. But when the day is over, don't forget about them. Everyone likes to feel loved, and it's so nice to know that love isn't just for Valentine's Day.
Happy Valentine's Day everyone!! Sending you lots of love on this day, and after.
I have no idea what these are actually meant to be called, but I call them heaven.
Roaming around Pinterest is the photo below 👇 and I have been wanting to try to make them for ages. However, NONE of the ingredients were available in Shanghai. Thank god I got semi stranded in the states then huh?!
Ok I guess they call them Caramel Snickerdoodles. But that just sounds silly.
I've found this photo over and over again, and ever time I try to click to find out where it's from or if those are thre complete directions, I get 'invalid link.' Lame.
So I tried to make them myself just going off the picture. And they turned out amazeballs.
Here's what you need! They are also shown in the photo above since I forgot to take a picture of all the ingredients.
One tube of the Pillsbury sheet crescent rolls
Kraft caramels (individually wrapped ones)
Unwrap your caramels. Unwrap and roll out your Pillsbury roll.
Lay your caramels about an inch apart on top of the roll and then cut squares around them. They do not need to be perfect! I got 4 in a row (25 in all-don't ask how that happened!) See photo below.
Now. Wrap the dough around each caramel so no caramel is showing. Then roll it in your sugar cinnamon mix.
The sugar cinnamon mix I just guessed at, and you can tailor it to your liking. I used about 1 tbsp cinnamon and 2 tbsp sugar, mixed it all together and it was PLENTY. If you're not a fan of cinnamon then simply don't add as much. This is your kitchen! Do what you want!
They should all look like this on the tray. Hey don't expand that much so you can put them fairly close together.
Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 11-14 minutes. They should not feel doughy, but just a bit firm.
Next is the hardest part. You have to let them cool. That caramel is freaking hot in there, and WILL burn your fingers/tongue and it won't wash off quickly. It's caramel. It's sticky.
Let them cool for about five minutes. The house will smell amazing and you will want to eat them, but wait.
Then enjoy. :)
If you know who initially posted the picture on Pinterest please let me know. I would love to tag them or link to their site. :)
I'm bringing these to a girls night tonight so we will see how they are!!! I'll give an update tomorrow.
Have a great Saturday!
This week's 'I Heart Monday' is more about appreciating the little things.
Some of you know, and some don't-but that's ok!, that David is leaving for the UK this Wednesday for six months. Since he has been visiting so much this year, it has been heavily suggested that he stay in the UK for six months, and after that he can come back for a visit. I cannot go there because I am waiting to apply for my spouse visa. This has left us no choice but to be apart for six months. Fingers crossed it goes quickly!!
All this is heartbreaking, but it also makes you really appreciate the time you have with someone, and the moments you share together.
I really don't want this blog to be a diary, but I do think that this is a huge part of my life right now, and it needs to be said!
As they say, the show must go on!
Here are some of the small things I am appreciating these last couple weeks and can't wait to share them with you!
I found these 'posters' the other day and just loved it. They're fun and interesting to look at and sometimes the message is just what you need for the day.
Here's a secret: I always screen shot (or save photo to camera roll) things I see on Instagram or Pinterest and then use them as my lock screens or wallpaper. Honestly. I change these almost everyday-so I save a lot!!
Like I said, appreciate the little things. Last week we had lettuce wraps and I got the green Fiesta plate.
Sidetrack. I love LOVE Fiesta plates. We bought some for my parents before Christmas in almost every colour. We love them. This is not a sponsored post, but I wish it was because honestly they are the best plates. They're make in America and are super durable.
Ok. Back to the green on green. I thought this lettuce looked so pretty on the green plate. Crazy I know. But I love colour.
David and I went to the Farmers Market a couple weekends ago and I don't think I wrote about it yet. It was so nice! In Shanghai there were people selling fresh fruit and veg everywhere, every weekend. I was surprised when I first went there (Is that sanitary? Where do they get the veg from? Why is it on the ground? That is not clean. Why is it so cheap? etc.), but now I really miss those dirty cheap vegetables.
So we tried the Farmers Market here in Toledo. It's every Saturday from 9-1pm. They have some delicious fresh fruits and vegetables (almost every kind of apple imaginable), homemade honey, potted plants and flowers. Really, it's not huge in the winter, but they have a little barn type inside area and loads of different stalls and it's heated!! All Crumbs Bakery also has a booth there every Saturday and takes orders for you to pick up when you get there. Awesome! I bought a focaccia (because at 10am that was all that was left!) and it was delicious. The girl (ok she wasn't a 'girl' but lady seems too old and she was between 20 and 30) was super nice and they even accepted credit cards. :) For the life of me I cannot remember her name but she said that her fiancé was the owner. If anyone knows who I'm talking about-let her know...and tell her 'You're awesome!!' from me. x
If you don't have cash they have these little coins that you can get (charge your card so much money and they you get so many coins) and then spend at each stall. Super convienent. Honestly, there is so much to see there and it's all local, which is amazing. Go check it out and tell me what you think!
The last thing I want to talk about briefly, because honestly I could write about this for days (and I probably will this week) is travelling and friendship.
I found this article about things you miss when you come home from travelling. Number 14 just hit me so hard. Not because I found my best friends (from other countries and back home) whilst living in a new city (without knowing anyone else at all) but because it's those kind of people who will stay with you no matter what. It's those people who will send a 'hey friend!' when they haven't heard from you in a few days, or a 'what's wrong?!' when they think you aren't acting like yourself. They're the ones who will tell it like it is but never dump you. They'll always be there to talk about missing your family and friends back home, but also to bring you back like 'look what you have here! Look what you have done! Be proud of yourself!' They want to travel with you, and meet up in different countries on all of your holidays. You date people from different countries, find your husband, marry him and go to your friends' weddings (which are also in different countries).
I think that everyone has these kinds of friends. Friends that will last throughout. Throughout what you may ask? Throughout anything and everything. I don't think of my 'back home' friends and my 'travelling' friends. They're all the same. If they're good friends then they'll be there through it all. The good, the mediocre, the bad times and the new beginnings.
So I leave you with the quote from the beginning.
'Be with those who help your being.' Rumi
That doesn't mean you need to delete every last person you've ever had a fight with or who don't agree with you. Maybe it's just not time for them. Maybe it's time to focus on YOU. But if they're your real friends-your true people-then they'll always be there, and they'll send you a 'hey friend' sooner than you think.
I could write about this forever, but that's the end of my I Heart Monday. :)
Leave me some love.
I'm Tory, the creator behind The Barmy Fox. My current loves