Tag Archives: London

Bank Your DIY Holiday Gift Game with..
Beeswax Coconut Candles

One of these days I will finally sort through my reflections from hiking Sahale Arm and seeing a Glacier up close, or adventures in the Catskill Mountains of New York, but in the mean time, this:

The days are getting shorter, the weather’s getting crisper early in the morning. School supply ads reign supreme on live television between sports games. Before you know it, it’ll be Fall, and then Winter, and you might find yourself scrambling to put together a gift for that office party exchange, or family get-together where everyone draws a number from a hat. Well..

Do you have lots of leftover expired coconut oil?

No no, I mean LOTS.

Do you have a weakness for collecting empty containers your spouse/housemate/talking cat keeps suggesting you recycle, but perhaps they are the classy-looking “biscuit” tins you brought back from London last November, and they make you nostalgic for your travels to the the land of tea time, so you keep saying you’ll make candles with them?

Primary inspiration from internet research:
I did some other research on soy wax, and paraffin wax and decided beeswax was my preferred option, as I try to avoid ingesting processed soy for myself and paraffin is a petroleum byproduct, so it strikes me as a little odd to be breathing either in. See citations at bottom of post for more. Mad props to my co-conspirator Jillian who balanced out my OCD-craziness with wingin’ it like a boss, plus ensuring I didn’t burn my house down in the process somehow.
Amass your supplies, pioneer!
Amass your supplies, pioneer!

Continue Reading

London!
Day 5 – East End, Street Art & Harrod’s

I got up my last full day in London and headed over to the East End’s Old Spitalfield Market to check out the food, and catch a street art tour. I’ve lately really loved learning about the different histories tied to street art and graffiti in cities, which are varied and many, and a great way to bring recent history/modern events alive. Plus, I think art on the street engages the residents of a city on a more human-scale level than giant glass skyscrapers.

Spitalfield Market: chicken tikka wrap with fresh-baked naan.
Spitalfield Market: chicken tikka wrap with fresh-baked naan: not as good as one might hope.

I didn’t feel a lot of patience for market stall browsing, so I popped in to Rapha Cycle Club in the corner of the market for some darn decent coffee.

Found a hipster bike and coffee place to chill.
Hipster bike and coffee place in the corner of Old Spitalfield Market to chill.
A Huguenot house in East End.
A Huguenot house in East End. Guess what’s up on that top floor there? A top shop! Topshop, get it? Get it?

Continue Reading

London!
Day 1 – Arrival

Special edition blog on travels here:
Got to London in the morning, began eating at odd hours almost immediately, and made it to the British Library, home of a nice little collection of hugely historical documents, such as the Magna Carta, various classical composers’ works, Jane Austen’s writing, and Karl Marx, to name only a few. They even acknowledged the history of printing in East Asia far pre-dating western printing. Unfortunately, I was to discover this was only the first of many many sights where they prohibit photos, so I only have pics of things outside the exhibit room. I think the tourists are actually paying more attention in the exhibits without their cameras, though..

Clockwise from top left: British Library, Paddington metro, fish & chips production line, bike lanes, more British Library (from an upper floor), me and Big Ben, more British Library, and (center): afternoon tea at the Woseley.
Clockwise from top left: British Library, Paddington metro, fish & chips production line, bike lanes, more British Library (from an upper floor), me and Big Ben, more British Library, and (center): afternoon tea at the Woseley.

Continue Reading