Monday, 27 March 2017

What's On My Phone

This is apparently a very popular tag for YouTube videos, but I got this idea from one of the many, many blog post ideas pieces I have read, and thought it might be a cool little post to throw together. People's phones are often very personal and private things, so I thought this might be a neat little way for you all to get to know me a little better.

I don't know anyone who would let others scroll through their camera roll in fear of having to explain the hundreds of random screenshots and other photos that we all have, so it is quite interesting when you're actually able to get a look into someone's phone. Now, I'm not going to post every photo on my camera roll because that would be the longest and most boring post of all time, but I am going to talk about my favourite apps and what I use them for. Feel free to comment some of your favourite apps below and I'll check them out!



Social Media

- Facebook & Messenger.
I only use Facebook to message friends and contribute to blogging groups, and that's usually on my computer, but I do like using the app throughout the day to save photos and videos of cute animals to show Daniel.

- Instagram.
My favourite social media app by far. I love both taking and looking at photos. I could easily spend hours browsing through the incredible things that people upload to that site, and sometimes I do. I'm actually quite proud of my own Instagram, especially with the recent pink aesthetic that I have seemed to acquired.

- Snapchat.
I never really cared about Snapchat, but I've been using it more now than ever before. I usually only post things to My Story because sending Snaps to people directly makes me think that I'll annoy them. I'm also part of a Snapchat group with people that I work with - who are some of the greatest people I know - so that brings me a lot of joy.

- Twitter.
I have quit Twitter multiple times, and have always come crawling back to it. In the end I have decided to keep it because it's another platform to let people know about my blog, as well as interact with other bloggers and creatives. Besides, sometimes I just need to get a certain thought - like this one - out of my head and into writing.

- Tumblr.
I honestly don't even know why I still have this app since I never use it. I have 3 Tumblr accounts (main, poetry and... other? I guess?), but they mostly run on queues. I do still like the website as it has opened my eyes to so many things that are now integral parts of my life and who I am as a person, I just don't have a lot of time for it anymore.



Photo Editing

- Afterlight.
This is my go-to editing app. It's so quick and easy to use. I enhance the brightening, play with the contrast, and maybe sharpen the image if needed, then I'm done. This app has definitely improved my Instagram game immensely.

- Waterlogue.
This app is just for fun. It turns your photos into water colour paintings, which sounds really cool, but often important lines and shapes are too blurred and the photo ends up looking like a hot mess. When it works, though, it can produce some really pretty photos.

- Tiny Planets.
This is also an app that is just for fun, which means that I'll keep the photos on my camera roll, but won't upload them to Instagram (except for the two times that I did). This app turns your photos into a sphere, so they look like tiny planets, hence the name. Not every photo turns out the way you hope, but usually the result is pretty cool.

- AirBrush.
I have recently discovered the huge difference that blurring your background makes to your photos. Sometimes photos can turn out sort of blah when your subject gets mixed in with the background, so whenever I have that issue, I just go to AirBrush and blur the background. You have to do it manually, which can be a little tedious, but the result is always worth it.


Games

- Solitaire.
One of my all-time favourite games that I recently re-discovered after not having wi-fi for a few days. I could play 100 games a day and still not get bored of it.

- Word Search.
I am a sucker for word searches. I've always owned multiple word search books at the time since I was 10. I could do them for hours, but I don't always want to bring a book with me everywhere I go, which is why I downloaded this app. I used it for a little while, but it's just not the same as the real thing.

- Candy Crush.
I used to be obsessed with this game. One particular level took me a couple of weeks to beat and I was so happy when I finally did it. I honestly don't think I've ever worked so hard at anything in my life before - but, as with most of my games both on my phone and DS, I just don't have much time to play this anymore.

- Pokemon GO.
I'm a huge Pokemon fan, which anybody who has known me for more than 5 minutes would know, so of course I have this app. I don't use it very often though because when I'm out I'm usually at work or with friends so I'm too busy to use it, and when I'm at home there's no interesting Pokemon around.

Miscellaneous

- Reminders.
I'm not sure if this one really counts as I have to have this app on my phone, but I really like to use this for grocery shopping as it's just so easy to "tick off" things once you purchase them.

- Notes.
This is another app that I can't delete even if I wanted to, but it's one that I would be completely lost without. I use it to write down any little thing that pops into my head. I have a list of blogging-beneficial hashtags to use on Instagram; a list of funny things that Daniel has said; a list of lyrics or quotes that I like; a list of places in I want to visit; et cetera.

- VicEmergency.
After your house burns down, a part of you is always going to be paranoid about it happening again, so I like to receive news of fires and other accidents nearby as they happen. It particularly helps me not stress as often when I am away from my house, as I know that if something were to happen near my home, I would get a notification about it.

- MyFitnessPal.
This app is such a huge help whenever I feel like I'm wanting to eat better. Counting calories helps me lose weight quite easily, and it also helps me make healthier choices throughout each day. I also like that it tells you the serving suggestion, as I have found that I can pretty much eat what I like (within reason), and as long as I stick to the serving suggestion, I won't go over my calorie intake for the day.

- Countdown.
I like this app because it allows me to see all the great things that are coming up this year, which drastically changes my entire outlook on life. I love being able to look forward to all the exciting things that I'm going to get to be a part of in the near future, such as: birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc. I think it's very important to also find happiness in day-to-day life, but it's nice to think of the bigger events whenever you're having a bad day.

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Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 24 March 2017

What I Wore: Day in the City

I personally think I've been doing pretty okay with my goals for the New Year for the first time ever, and I definitely think this blog has been a huge help. It's given me a way to document my progress, and it's also made me feel a kind of responsibility; that, since I shared what I planned to do, I had to go through with it so I didn't let anyone down, or appear flaky.

The one I think I've been doing the best on is trying new recipes, and if you've been reading my blog for the last few weeks and have seen all my food posts, I'm hoping you will agree. I've also been putting more care into what I wear and trying to use forgotten pieces of clothing, which was another one of my resolutions, but I hadn't yet shared any of my outfits on here - until now!



I really do love clothes; I love putting pieces together and have them complement each other perfectly. I never feel better about myself than when I love my outfit. I tend to wear a lot of black and white because it goes so well with everything, and I think it complements my hair as well (which is looking really red in this photo, but it's actually orange!).

I got this cute little top from a thrift shop, but the tag says it is from Christopher Ari, which is a shop in Melbourne. I love shirts with collars and buttons, so I knew I had to get it. For some reason the buttons only go half way down the shirt, leaving the bottom half to sit open, so I paired it with a high-waisted skirt until I get around to trying to put more buttons on it.



I've had this skirt forever and hadn't worn it in so long, but thanks to my new resolution, I've worn it a few times this year already. It's from the brand Alice in the Eve, but I would have gotten it from a thrift shop or a friend. The tights that I'm wearing are these ones from eBay, which I also have in black. This was the first time I'd worn them, and they were really cute, but it was so hot in the city that day that I ended up taking them off.

I'm disappointed in myself for not getting a photo of my boots because they are my favourite things ever and I wear them nearly everyday. I got them from Kmart a little while ago for $30, which nearly killed me because I'm a $4-thrift-shop-pair-of-shoes girl, but they were 100% worth every dollar. I'm sure you've seen them before, since every girl on the planet seems to own them; they're just cute little ankle boots with a zip on the side.



My cute little collar clips - which are based off Luna and Artemis from Sailor Moon - are from We're All Made Here on Etsy, whose shop I am in love with! I really want to collect all the Sailor Moon items, they are so gorgeous.

I bought my bag (which is, once again, based off Luna from Sailor Moon - I also have the Artemis version) from eBay. There are so many shops that sell them, but I just went with the cheapest option that had the best rating and reviews. I use this bag more than any other bag I own as it fits both my digital camera and my Polaroid camera perfectly. Plus, I'm a sucker for a good shoulder bag as I hate carrying things!



The thing that's been keeping me from sharing any outfit of the day posts is that I am very self conscious. I much prefer to be behind the camera. One thing that I haven't mentioned yet on here is that I set myself a few secret goals for this year which are more focused on my self-esteem. The only one that I have talked about on Instagram, is that I want to take more photos of myself this year. It might not seem like much, but it's a huge deal for me.

Most of the time when I see a photo of myself I am brought to tears because I despise what see, and that's not how I want to live. I love life, and I want to be able to live it to the fullest and not let my self esteem get in the way. I basically told myself to get over it and take more photos of myself, and if I really don't like them, I just won't show them to anyone - and it's already helped so much. I've already put quite a few photos of myself on Instagram and when I look at them, I don't want to cry, which is amazing.



I still struggle with looking in the mirror, and try to refrain from doing so whenever possible, but I am over the moon that I can now document more of my life through photos, especially since I have such a bad memory. I have more photos with my friends now, and more photos taken on days that I was happy and felt good about myself, which is so great to be able to look back on.

Hopefully I'll continue feeling better about myself and share more of my outfits in the future (and hopefully I'll learn how to pose better as time goes on). I own such cute pieces of clothing and I just want to show them off! Here's to continuing growing and bettering myself throughout 2017.

Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 20 March 2017

Pink Unicorn Fudge

Unicorns are all the rage at the moment, and I'm certainly not complaining - especially since things like chubby unicorn lights and cute unicorn phone charges exist - so when I saw a super cute unicorn fudge recipe by Sprinkles For Breakfast (AKA the best website name ever), I knew I had to try it out.



I chose this recipe because it seemed pretty simple, it looks absolutely amazing, and I had never tried making fudge before. It did turn out to be quite simple to make. The recipe only stated that a microwave was needed, not a stovetop or oven, so that was definitely right up my alley.

I followed the recipe pretty much to a tee, except that I used pink food dye instead of purple candy colouring (I'm not sure what the difference is), and I used white chocolate melts instead of chocolate chips, since they are specifically for melting purposes.



Despite my awesome recipe-following skills, the fudge never really set for me. It remained incredibly sticky and I was unable to cut it into slices, so I ended up having to eat it straight out of the pan! I didn't mind too much as it was still delicious (and incredibly sweet, too), but it did mean that I couldn't take nicer photos of it.

Someone left a comment on Sprinkles For Breakfast's original post saying that theirs never set either, so I felt better knowing others had the same problem as me. I actually ended up keeping it in the fridge for days and it still never completely set.



I'm sure if I did some research I could figure out why that happened, but I'll save that for the next time I want to try making fudge. I'm too preoccupied with choosing the next recipe I want to try to focus on the ones I already have! If this was something I was going to make often, I would make it again until I got it right, but this was so super sweet, I couldn't handle having it too often.

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Are you enjoying the unicorn trend as much as everyone else is? Is there anything unicorn themed that you've been particularly enjoying? I'm always up for bringing more magic into my life!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 17 March 2017

Collection Series #5: Cake Moulds and Cookie Cutters

This is probably my favourite collection that I own, but I've been dreading doing this post as I knew it was going to very photo-heavy, which can be a bit boring. I tried to squeeze as many items into one photo as I could so this post wasn't a million miles long, but I could only do so much.

I'm still not 100% happy with the photos for this post, but I utilised my minimal space and sub-par lighting as best as I could. I just really wanted to show you this collection. First I'll show you what's on the shelves of my baking cabinet, and then I'll show you the contents of the drawer and cupboard underneath.



On top:
a decorating kit, two whisks, an electric beater and a mini chip basket.
First shelf: donut maker, cupcake moulds and cake pop moulds. The streamers are from my birthday.










Second shelf: cake and icing mixes, cupcake liners (behind the streamers), bi-carb soda, writing icing, ready-to-roll icing, food colouring, flavourings, cupcake-shaped spatula, and two cookie stamps.









Third shelf: cook books, jelly mix, sprinkles, chocolate fondue machine, Christmas sprinkles, cake knife, plate with cupcakes and a cookie cutter.

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I'd say about 90% of my baking items are secondhand (apart from the food, of course). There were a few things here and there that I bought brand new, such as the number cake moulds that are pictured above, two cookies stamps that are pictured later on, and a few random cookie cutters that I got from cake shows.





These moulds seem far too scary to ever use, which is why I haven't tried. Truth be told, I haven't used most of my baking items, which is why I set myself a New Year's Resolution to try new recipes and actually make use of all these items.

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One thing I really want to improve on is my decorating skills. I am amazed at the things that people can put on cakes and cookies, and I really want to be able to do that too. I'd love to be the kind of friend that always brings some sort of baked good to an event that fits the theme perfectly (Christmas themed food at Christmas time, Easter themed food at Easter time, etc). I think that would be so much fun.

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I should probably confess now that this isn't actually my entire collection. I left out any generic items such as round cake tins, loaf pans, and a love heart cake pan, as they aren't as cute and exciting as the rest of my collection - even if they're the ones that I actually use. I also own a lot of decorating tools that aren't pictured, such as this kit from ALDI, which I really want to start using.

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I actually have no idea what the clear moulds picture above are for, but I think they're for chocolate, or maybe some kind of candy. Even though I own a few chocolate moulds, I've never really cared to use them since just melting chocolate is nowhere as exciting as actually cooking something, but I do think bringing some novelty shaped chocolates to birthdays and other celebrations would be cute.

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I don't think I'll ever stop collecting baking items. There are just so many unique tools and moulds out there; the possibilities are endless. However, I am running out of room in my cupboard, which may be a sign that I need to slow down! Is there anything that you like to collect, whether you've been doing it for years, or have only just begun? I would love to hear from others who enjoy collecting things. 

Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 13 March 2017

Organise Your Home Office Day

After being unaware that Pancake Day was a thing, and not knowing the date of International Women's Day, I made myself research all the upcoming holidays and note down any that I might want to write a blog post about, and it's definitely one of the best decisions I have made.

Whilst many that I found most likely won't be well known - and I think they're mostly based in America (Australia has no cool and unique holidays!) - I still think they're really fun. For example, April 2nd is Peanut Butter and Jelly Day, so of course I tried a recipe that incorporates peanut butter and jelly (jam for my fellow Aussies) to post for that day.

Today, I will be talking about Organise Your Home Office Day, which I discovered on the Days of the Year website. The only other mention I could find of it was on the Home Office Organizer website, so it's obviously not a huge deal, but it did inspire me to actually organise my office - well, more so my desk, as the only other thing in my half of the office is my Pokemon shelf, which is always organised.



Here is the obligatory before photo that I was very reluctant to include. I hate mess and disorganisation so it hurts to even look at this photo, even though it's been a lot worse before.

Technically Organise Your Home Office Day is on March 14th, which is tomorrow, but I'm trying to stick to uploading on Mondays and Fridays (at least) so I maintain a regular schedule, so I thought a day early wouldn't hurt. Plus, now that you know about this 'holiday' beforehand, you have the opportunity to join in on organising your home office if you want to!



Here it is after. It's nowhere near what I want it to look like (basically everything on this Pinterest board, I want), but it still makes me happy. I love all the pink, the photos of Daniel, and my beloved pin collection. I will never get sick of looking at them.

I change what's on the wall all the time, but at the moment I have a backing card that came with the Friends frame pin I bought from Goellnerd; a Cry Baby print from Elorasaurus; a picture I got from a magazine, illustrated by Mel Stringer; a pink paint sample card; a camera picture I received from a pen pal; a small card by Mel Macklin; two cards from Daniel; some mini cards by Able and Game; and a tiny picture of a mouse, which I can't remember where it came from!




Once my little house of pins (which was definitely one of the best Sunday Savings finds of last year) is filled up, I'll do a collection post on them and the artists who made them. For now, you can find most of them mentioned somewhere in my Instagram feed.



Underneath my top shelf isn't as pretty unfortunately (that's blu tack stuck under the glass, not chewing gum, in case you were wondering), but I like having all these things nearby. The gorgeous pink box is something I received for my last birthday, as are two of the journals that are on the right.

The thick journal next to the box is my art journal, then there's just some pencils (that I've had since year 7 back in 2009!); my DS; Pokemon Sun; a pencil case; four notebooks; a clipboard and paper; and a mug that says "craft makes me happy" that's filled with random things like magnets and bobby pins.




Lists are my favourite thing to write. The yellow notebook that's in an earlier photo is primarily for future reference lists, such as the baking items that I own and things I want in my future house, but my clipboard and sticky notes are for daily, weekly and monthly reminders.

The pink journal is my every day one, the light brown one is my bullet journal, and the dark brown one is for blog things. If I don't write things down, I will forget to do them, so having all these journals really helps me stay organised.



To the right of my pin house is this photo of Daniel and one of my oldest friends in the cutest photo holder (which is an old thrift shop find), a lamp that I never use but still love, and some very cute and derpy chickens.



Inside the pink box is a bunch of scrapbooking and snail mail decorations and accessories, most of which I received from a pen pal. I have heaps more scattered in different drawers and containers around the house, but these are my favourite pieces that I want to use first - yet also don't want to use ever because they're too cute.

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Even though I spend most of my time in the lounge room now (there's more room, plus it has great natural lighting), I still love my office. I love being in there with Daniel, whether we're doing our own thing, or watching something together. My desk is definitely my happy place; it makes me feel very relaxed, which is rare for me. Do you have a favourite room of the house? Or a place that instantly makes you feel happy when you're there? I'd love to hear about it!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 10 March 2017

Cinnamon Crunch Banana Bread

I have been loving trying new recipes and posting about them on here, and it seems you have all been enjoying it too (seriously, nineteen comments on my last one?!), so I picked out a new recipe from Pinterest and got to work on bringing you another cooking post!


I found this wonderful recipe from Coco and Ash somewhere in the depths of Pinterest, and was immediately intrigued by the cinnamon crunch topping. After last week's almost-disaster, I decided to wait until Daniel got home from work before making it, which meant that it was around 10:30pm by the time I started, and we had a 7am wake up the next day. In hindsight, I should have done it another day, but I was too excited to wait any longer.

Cinnamon Banana Bread | The Small Adventurer
Cinnamon Banana Bread | The Small Adventurer.

Due to our time limit, and the fact that I was absolutely exhausted as usual, I decided to skip one little step that I really wish I didn't. It wasn't anything that affected how the bread came out (because it came out delicious), it just would have made it that much better. 

The recipe says to pour half the batter into your loaf pan, sprinkle some of the cinnamon topping onto it, then pour the rest of the batter in before coating it with the remaining cinnamon topping. I was a little hesitant that I wasn't going to like the cinnamon topping so I decided just to put it on top so I could cut it off if I needed to - but I definitely did not need to.

Cinnamon Banana Bread | The Small Adventurer.

The cinnamon crunch topping was delicious! It's what makes this recipe so amazing. I couldn't get enough of it. In fact, on more than one occasion, I just cut off some of the top to nibble on instead of cutting myself an actual slice! I really loved it, and will definitely put it in the middle as suggested next time I make this recipe.

I was expecting banana bread to be really difficult to make, since it's always so expensive at shops, and the fact that it has 'bread' in the title made me think it was going to be a doughy texture which, as you'll recall from my sugar cookies, is so annoying to work with. 

Luckily, banana bread is much more like a cake. There is no kneading involved and hardly any mixing either. The most difficult part was mashing the bananas! My bananas were super ripe, the skin practically fell off, yet I still found it quite difficult and time-consuming to mash them with a fork. Next time I might invest in a pastry cutter, or even use a potato masher!

Cinnamon Banana Bread | The Small Adventurer

As usual, I never expect anything I make to turn out even edible, so I was really pleased when this beautiful loaf came out of the oven and tasted delicious. Not to mention that I didn't need to run to Daniel for help this time, which makes me even more happy. 

Banana bread is one of my favourite treats ever, but I hardly ever have it because it's so pricey (I mean, it's not THAT bad, but I'd rather get 6 donuts for $3 than 5 slices of banana bread for $5). Now that I know how to make it, I'll be able to have it more often!

Cinnamon Banana Bread | The Small Adventurer.

With each recipe I try, I can feel myself growing more confident not only in the kitchen, but in life in general. The fact that I set myself a goal and have already done so well in the first few months makes me feel so happy, and really helps motivate me to keep going. There are so many different recipes I want to try (I have 188 pins to my secret 'Recipes of 2017' Pinterest board!), which will hopefully help push me to keep trying to make one per week. The possibilities are endless!

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How are your yearly or monthly goals going? Anything you're really proud of?

Until next time,
Indya xx

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

What I'm Loving Wednesday #10

I know that I say this a lot, but time has been going way too fast lately! I swear I was just writing up last week's What I'm Loving Wednesday post, and here I am again! Not much has happened in the last seven days, but next week I am seeing two sets of friends, as well as having an adventure-filled day with Daniel, so I'm looking forward to that. Even though not much has happened with me personally this week, I did manage to find a bunch of things that I love and want to share with you. I hope you like them too!


Photo from https://www.etsy.com/au/shop/MIMAWorkshop

1. Ice cream trinket bowls.
It's no secret that I love things that are shaped like sweets, so these adorable ice cream trinket bowls from MIMAWorkshop on Etsy are right up my alley. They also have a few popsicle and space-themed items that are just as gorgeous. Did I mention that they hand paint all their products? You can practically see the love that goes into their work.

My favourite thing about this shop, though, is that they're from Melbourne, just like me! I love seeing people I admire come from Australia, especially Melbourne, because it makes me feel that they if they can make a name for themselves without being born somewhere more fabulous like New York City or Rome, then I can too (not that I don't love Melbourne, because I do!).

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Photo from femstem.com

2. The Women of NASA LEGO set.
Science writer for MIT news Maia Weinstock has been working with LEGO for a few years to bring this amazing and adorable set of LEGO figurines to life. I love the fact she decided to make the figurines into specific women instead of just "female astronaut" etc, as this gives children the chance to actually learn the names of some of the brightest women that have worked in STEM fields.

The figurines, from left to right, are of computer scientist Margaret Hamilton, mathematician Katherine Johnson, astronaut Sally Ride, astronomer Nancy Grace Roman and astronaut Mae Jemison. As you can see, there's a wonderful diversity between all five women, both in appearance and occupations, which is very important. Maia hopes that these figurines will help everyone "understand that women can and should have roles in STEM fields."

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3. Bullet journaling.
After reading Eleanor May's post about her bullet journal, I decided to finally start my own. I'd never really been that interested, especially since I'm currently using three other journals for different things (not including my art journal, which I actually haven't used in a while), but I'm hoping it's going to help me keep track of things better, since I've been feeling like there's just not enough hours in the day for a while now. At the moment I have a monthly event planner, a list of monthly tasks, a daily tracker, and a daily spendings + savings tracker, which I'm hoping will make me cut down on spending. If you have any suggestions for bullet journaling, feel free to comment them down below!

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Photo from thegirlwholovedtowrite.com

4. The Girl Who Loved To Write.
I love talking about blogs that I enjoy reading, and I love talking about women that I find inspiring even more, so when I find someone that fits into both of those categories, I want to all but scream from rooftops about them. Chelsea is a blogger and a mum who writes positive and motivating posts that always improve my day when I read them.

The first post of hers that I really fell in love with was her Things That Didn't Go According To Plan post, which is proof that some things do happen for a reason, and that if life doesn't give you what you really want, it's most likely because there's something even better planned for you. If you like positive women who make funny tweets, and post envy-inducing photos at the beach or pool, then Chelsea is exactly what you need!

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More things I have been loving lately:
* A potentially life-altering question to ask yourself.
* 20 gorgeous free fonts for your blog.
* An important blog post.
* Pusheen holding a donut is my favourite thing ever.
* This uplifting quote to tell yourself on the bad days.

Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 6 March 2017

Our Relationship In Photos

In my last Read In.. post, I talked about the book Why We Broke Up, and how it was told through a series of mini stories about random objects that were somehow significant in their relationship, which gave me the idea for this blog post. My boyfriend and I have been together for over 3 and a half years, and have made so many memories together that I couldn't possibly remember them all, but there are a few ones that stand out to me, as I am reminded of them each time I see these objects, and I am going to share them today.



First tradition.
When Daniel and I first started going out, each night we would watch a movie in bed together until we fell asleep. It quickly became our routine to put a movie on this very laptop, regardless if we were going to stay up to watch it or not. I became so accustomed to it that I couldn't sleep if there wasn't a movie playing.

The movie that we put on was always Mary Poppins, although I'm not quite sure why. To this day, I still haven't seen Mary Poppins all the way through, because I'd always fall asleep. I know the beginning like the back of my hand, but I have no idea how it ends. The movie wasn't what mattered though (and actually, after a few months, we swapped it to the Bee Movie because I love that movie); it was just that point in time that holds a special place in my heart.

I was dating such a sweet guy who was always surprising me as to just how caring he was. He was somehow both someone I barely knew, and someone I felt like I knew better than myself, all at once. Even though a lot of sleep was lost because we were too busy staying up all night talking, or starting the Bee Movie again for the second or even third time because we were still awake, it was all worth it because those moments were what brought us so close together, and made us become best friends, as well as partners.

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First gift.
A few months into our relationship, Daniel visited the Melbourne Aquarium with his family, and brought this little cutie back for me. I initially didn't believe that it was actually for me, but he insisted that it was, and I was so happy. Daniel had no obligation to buy me anything, but he saw this little guy at the gift shop and wanted to get him for me, which is so sweet.

His name is Pengy (don't laugh, we're adorable), and he is one of my favourite things that I own. I've had him in my life nearly as long as I've had Daniel, which is so weird to think about. I like that he reminds me of the early stages of our relationship, all very sweet and shy and full of surprises (not that Daniel doesn't still surprise me now, because he does). Daniel and I both have a great love of penguins, and we visit them at the aquarium whenever we go to the city, so this was a perfect gift.

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Our Relationship in Photos | The Small Adventurer

First birthday together.
Well, my first birthday with Daniel, to be exact (Daniel had his two weeks into our relationship. I got him a wallet, which he still uses today!). Daniel picked this necklace out for me all by himself, and I love it so much, but what I love most is his reason for why he chose it. When I opened up the box, I was swooning over how gorgeous it was and how he definitely spent too much money on me, and he said "it's two hearts joined, just like us". I practically melted.

No one had ever said something so sweet to me before, and I've never forgotten it. If you've read my Pandora charms post, you'll know that I also now have two linked heart charms from Daniel that I absolutely love, too. Any time I see two hearts that are even somewhat linked together, I think of that moment, and how incredibly blessed I am to have such a wonderful boyfriend.

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Our Relationship in Photos | The Small Adventurer

First anniversary.
When mine and Daniel's first anniversary came around, we had recently moved to Melbourne and I was still yet to find a job, so I was unable to buy him anything. I was very upset about not being able to get my wonderful, perfect boyfriend anything for our first anniversary so Daniel suggested that I make him something instead since I love crafts, so that's exactly what I did (we did something similar for our first Valentine's Day too). I made a little booklet and filled it with 52 memories that we made together over the first 52 weeks of our relationship. It was so much fun to do, and it's now a tradition of ours.

For our second anniversary I bought an old book from an op shop and pasted in photos and drawings to go with that year's memories, but it made the book really thick and impossible to display nicely, so the year after that I went back to making my own booklet again. As you can see in the photo above, as well as these few others, I make Daniel things quite often, even though I also buy him 'real' presents now. I actually have two boxes filled with all the things I've made Daniel, plus other little trinkets and souvenirs that I've collected over the last 3 years. I love looking through them and remembering all the things we've done together; it's like having a time capsule of our relationship.

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First big purchase.
I've briefly touched on the topic of how Daniel and I had to move out immediately this time last year, which left us briefly homeless, and without many possessions. Due to this impromptu move, we didn't have a lot of necessities that people usually have, such as a couch, table, bed frame or even a vacuum, but the one thing that really affected us was that we didn't have a washing machine.

Daniel took it upon himself to hand wash all of our clothing for weeks. It was so tedious and time-consuming - not to mention that they took forever to dry because he could only ring them out so much by hand - but he did it, and he never complained. We were in a sucky situation, our lives had been turned upside down and our bank accounts had practically been drained due to moving costs, and it was all because of someone in my family, but he never complained once. He never once made me feel like I was the one to blame, even if I felt that way.

A family friend ended up giving us washing machine for free (which is how we got most of our furniture. Shout out to everyone who helped us through those tough times ), but after a while that stopped working and we decided to bite the bullet and purchase a new one. It was expensive, but definitely worth it. It honestly felt like this washing machine represented the end of our struggles; like we had finally managed to build ourselves back up from nothing, and that's a really great feeling. I'm so, so grateful that I had Daniel by my side throughout these last few years, I honestly don't know where I'd be without him.

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Until next time,
Indya xx