Monthly Archives: February 2016

What to think about when you start skiing

skiing as a beginnerFirst of all, I am generally not very adventurous. So putting myself on two small boards to slide down a steep hill in high pace isn’t my first choice of spending a nice saturday. However, my boyfriend is a skiing teacher and all my friends ski since they are little. So I figured after I pushed myself to start climbing and to try surfing, I could as well also give skiing a go.

If you are also thinking to start skiing as a complete beginner, here are some of my personal tips further extended by the more professional advice of my boyfriend.

  • Skiing is a sport
    It is truly exhausting, trust me. You don’t have to be an athlete but you should have a normal level of fitness I would say. It doesn’t do any harm to do some sport before, especially to strenghten your legs. While skiing your knees are constantly bend which my muscles weren’t used to and I strongly regretted not having done any workout before.

skiing tips for beginnersfirst time skiing

  • Start Skiing with a professional teacher
    To get starting with skiing you should book a professional skiing teacher (or get a friend who did a certified training). They know best how to teach beginners and will be able to teach you the rigth technique from the beginning. When choosing a skiing school look out for certificates like the Deutscher Skiverband, Deutscher Skilehrerverband in Germany or the Östereichische Skiverband in Austria. Just generally try to make sure the teachers were trained on a high level. For children, group courses are better because they most of the time feel more comfortable in a group. In a group there is also the possibility to playfully do some small competitions so that the children learn faster and with fun.
    For adults smaller groups are better suited because adults don’t learn just by watching someone and repeating the movement but by mentally understanding what to do and trying to put that into practice. With a smaller group the teacher can react to the individuals better and might be able to explain things individually.

skiing equipment

  • Equipment
    You need a winter jacket and winter trousers. On top of that you should wear some warm layers under your jacket, although don’t put on too much because you will get warm pretty fast. Gloves and goggles are also quite handy.
    If you don’t have own skies and shoes don’t worry you can borrow the complete equipment in every skiing area. The ski should reach up to your nose when standing, although smaller skies are easier at the beginning. When trying on shoes you should be very comfortable in them and be able to move your toes. Don’t try them on walking but standing with bend knees. In this position you shouldn’t feel any pressure of the shoe on your foot. If they feel uncomfortable when trying, they will hurt when you start skiing. The ski poles should be at a lenght were your arms form a right angle. The helmet should fit your head tightly so it really protects you if you fall.
    Normally the people in the shop will know all of that, so if you don’t have the feeling they are checking all these things and especially don’t ask you some question about what you want to do, you better go to another shop.

lift 2

  • Start slow and don’t excpet to much of yourself
    Last and most important. Skiing needs practice. This means that you won’t be a perfect skier after one day of practice. I spent basically my first day on the children’s hill learning to use the lift and just practicing the basics. But it felt great to slide down that little hill on my own in a controlled way after half of the day.
    However when we went up the hill for our first run down the slope, I was terrified and lost confidence. With the help of my boyfriend I managed to get down in one peace and  was even able to do the last quarter by myself which felt amazing. But I had realised that I need a lot of practice before I will feel perfectly fine.

I hope these tips help you when thinking of starting to ski and also took away some of your concerns. After all the day was a great experience and adventure which I would like to repeat soon.

Can you add any tips for beginning to ski? Are you a skiing pro or thinking about to start?

 

40 days of higher awareness

Statue of an angelWith Ash Wednesday the fasting period within Christian tradition started this week. In recent years I noticed quite a lot of people who normally wouldn’t call themselves religious, fasting during this special time of year. I think this trend really reflects the wish to have a time within the year to reflect about ones consumption or to live more aware of ones own behaviours.

Lend normally starts somewhen in February. After the new years resultions which might have been failed in January, lend gives everyone an opportunity to work on small changes in their lives. I have been fasting during lend for three years now and can truly recommend it.

I started by doing without any chocolate, then any sugar and am this year trying to renounce meat. I think it always should be something you do for yourself and this also means that you shouldn’t be too hard to yourself if you break the fasting ones or twice.

I remember that in my first fasting period I couldn’t help it to eat ones or twice some chocolate just because I ones completely forgot and the other time I simply couldn’t resist. But still I managed to eat no chocolate for 38 days which was a pretty good achievement for me.

So what I basically want to say is that fasting should be about a voluntary act and always should be something you enjoy. Of course it can be tough to resist something you normally do a lot or eat a lot but it always gives me a feeling of great achievement and strenght if I manage to push through the 40 days.

Fasting out of religious belief or just out of curisosity or self challenge definitely is a good way to get to know yourself better. And there are so many different ways you can approach the season. I mean there are the general ideas like not eating chocolate, meat or not drinking any alcohol. But you could also do something completely different like a friend of mine did. Last year she was doing her Master degree and because she always stressed herself she decided to try to reduce that pressure on herself. So every time she was putting too much pressure on herself she comitted herself to relax. The year before she tried not to use any swear words.

So I guess with these examples fasting really is about a period of time where you try to live a bit more conscious about you and your life decisions and often that helps to find new ways of living or just small steps of improvement for yourself.

Sweet and savoury rolls – Perfect Finger Food

There is this tradition in German companies that if you start working somewhere, you have to provide your team with some sort of treat. So because I just began working as a Trainee, I needed to come up with an idea. I remembered that my mum ones made really good savoury pizza rolls at a party and I thought I could do a mixture of savoury and sweet rolls. I always thought that rolls are the perfect finger food.

The savoury option was fixed due to the known recipe but I couldn’t quite decide what to do as a sweet option until I found this recipe of cinnamon rolls. I love cinnamon and so I decided to give it a go.

Both recipes turned out to be really yummy. They are also perfect as finger food for every party or cake sale. So I thought I’ll share with you those great recipes.

Pizza rollsingredients savoury pizza roll

for roughly 12 rolls you need

1 onion
400g minced meat
150g Sour cream
2 Tbsp tomatoe paste
salt
grounded pepper
100g grated cheese

ready-made pizza dough

This recipe is pretty simple just because I used ready made pizza dough. It’s a fresh dough which is rolled up and can be used instantly without needing time to raise etc.

First of all you need to cut the onions into little pieces and fry them together with the minced meat in a pan. After the meat is cooked add the tomatoe paste and sour cream and season it with salt and pepper.

Straighten the dough to a square and spread the filling on it. Cover all with the cheese and start rolling up the dough with the filling. Cut roughly 2cm thick slices and place them on a backing tray covered with baking sheet. Bake the rolls at 180°Fan for 25 mintues. pizza rolls

Cinnamon Rolls

ingredients cinnamon rolls

for 20-24 pieces you need

for the dough

50g melted butter
300ml warm milk
1 egg1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 sachet vanila-pudding powder
500g flour
7g dried yeast

for the filling

75g butter
100-150g brown sugar
2 tsp. grounded cinnamon
100g chopped wal- or pecan nut

Start by preparing the dough by kneading all the ingredients together to a firm dough. Put it to rest at a warm place for roughly an hour or until the dough has doubled its size.

Roll the dough into a square and spread the butter on it. Mix the sugar with the cinnamon and sprinkle all onto the dough. Spread the nuts as well and roll the whole thing up.

filling and cutting cinnamon rolls
Again, cut roughly 2cm thick slices and put them on a backing tray. Bake the cinnamon rolls at 175°fan for about 15-20 minutes.

cinnamon rolls

Both of the recipes can be done with ready made dough, so if you are in a hurry it doesn’t matter.

All my colleauges enjoyed both versions and I think it goes well on every party buffet or even children’s birthday as the perfect finger food.

What is your favourite finger food? Do you have similar tradition at your workplace?

What to do with old clothes?

During my time in Leeds I lived in a tiny room in a typical student accomodation. Due to a very small wardrobe I really didn’t have that much clothes with me and after some time, I surprisingly didn’t miss anything. So when I came back to my full wardrobe, back home, I was a bit overwhelmed and started to strictly sort my old clothes.

Sorting things I had three categories in mind:

Stuff, I am actually wearing

I put everything aside which I hadn’t been wearing for longer than half a year. With every peace, I thought about possible combinations and styles and if I couldn’t think of any I put the peace away. It was such a good feeling to get rid of all that stuff I didn’t even use anymore.

Stuff, I thought others would like to wear
Stuff, no one wants to wear anymore

Some of my clothes just was so old, washed out or broken. Because I don’t like throwing away things like clothes I used special recycling bags where I knew the clothes would be sorted again and then recycled properly.

A friend of mine and me were thinking to go to a clothing fleamarket for quite some time. Now seemed to be the perfect opportunity to actually put our plan into action. All the clothes I thought someone might still want to wear was packed into a box and last weekend I headed to Munich to try my luck in selling them.

The fleamarket, we went to, was a special market for girls and started in the afternoon. So we didn’t have to get up very early like we would have to on a “normal” one. Together with another friend we booked four metres for our stall. In the end we could have used more than that and the preparation and arranging of our stall was quite a challenge.

clothing fleamarketClothesIt was my first fleamarket ever and I wasn’t sure if I would sell anything of my stuff. I just hoped not to lose money in the experiment. But in the end, I earned more money than I thought and on top of it had a great time selling, negotiating prices and chatting with the visitors of the market.

girls fleamarket
It was such a fun experience and in the end half of my clothes were sold and I am giving the remaining clothes to refugee camps and charity shops. I could also recycle them but because they are still usable, I feel better to give it to people who might actually wear them again.

What do you do with leftover clothes or other stuff? Have you been on a fleamarket?