Wednesday, 31 December 2014

My Favourites of 2014

Earlier this week I shared my 10 most visited posts of the year. Today I want to show you my favourites (in no particular order). These posts may not have been the most popular but they're the ones I really like and want to show off. 

Sunday, 28 December 2014

10 Most Popular Posts of 2014

2014 is almost over and so it's time for a recap. Honestly, I love doing these posts. It's neat to look back at what I've created and what other people have found most interesting. Here are my 10 most popular posts (by number of visits) of 2014.

If you'd like to see some of my past 10 Most Popular lists, you can check out 2013 and 2011/12

Shared at: Meegan Makes, My Pinterventure, A Stroll Thru Life, Kathe With An E, Sugar Bee Crafts, Diana Rambles, Fluster Buster, A Creative Princess, The Creative Exchange, Artsy Fartsy Mama, Life on Lakeshore Drive

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Runners Tell All: 2014 Recap and 2015 Goals

It's time for the final Runners Tell Amanda @ The Lady Okie and Becky @ Sunshine to the Square Inch. While I haven't always linked up, I've enjoyed reading the posts every month and didn't want to miss the last one. This month's topic was a 2014 recap and goals for 2015.

This is my first full year of running (how cool is that?!) and I'm hooked. I completed several 5 ks - both fun runs and timed runs - and my very first 10 k at the Calgary Marathon.  Most recently J and I did the Santa Shuffle, which was a super fun 5k run, complete with santa hats and reindeer antlers.

I've continued on my journey to get healthy and running has definitely helped with that: I'm losing weight, I'm being active, I'm eating better and I'm using running as a coping strategy for stress. I don't track distances or times so I don't have any impressive stats but to me the benefits I'm seeing are much more important than any numbers.

My awesome new shirt from mama. Love it!

This year my goal is simple: keep running. No times, no distance, no specific races, no pressure. I don't want to make too many plans because I fear that will take away the pleasure and relaxation I get from running so the only plan I'm making is to continue doing what I'm currently doing as long as I enjoy it.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Cleaning Oven Racks: Dish Soap and Fabric Softener Sheets

Last night was the first night of Christmas holidays and I celebrated by cleaning my oven. Yes, I live on the wild side. It might seem weird but whenever I have a break from school, the first thing I want to do is scrub my house top to bottom. Nothing makes me quite as relaxed as a clean house.

Anyway, most of the time I clean my oven with a baking powder paste but this time it was so bad that I went for the nasty cleaner. Several chemical burns and a headache later and my oven was sparkling. However, that is not the point. On to the real reason for this post: the oven racks.

After a few hours I could see some grease floating on the surface.

I hate cleaning oven racks. In my mind, they're way more annoying to clean than the actual oven. Instead of my usual scrubbing, I went to Pinterest to see if I could find a new idea. A lot of sites recommended 1/2 c blue dawn, 6 fabric softener sheets, and hot water. I put the ingredients in the bathtub and placed the racks in the water, with a cloth under each corner of the rack to protect that tub finish.

The oven with the clean, shiny racks.
They're not perfect but they're a whole lot better than they were.

I was pretty skeptical. Three episodes of Grey's Anatomy later (I am on holidays after all) and the grime was not easily coming off. True, the posts I read all said extended periods (8 hours to overnight) but I'm impatient and wanted to finish the racks before bed. I decided to suck it up and leave the racks in the tub overnight, and it was worth it. When I got up I wiped over the grime with one of the fabric softener sheets. Most of it wiped off and, while it isn't perfect, it's a whole lot better. Now I have lovely shiny racks for my sparkly clean oven.

A close up of the racks. As you can see, there's still some dirt
but for the little amount of scrubbing I did, I'm pleased.

Shared at: Life on Lakeshore Drive, A Stroll Thru Life, Crafty Blog Stalker, A Creative Princess, Ginger Snap Crafts, Fluster Buster, Sugar Bee Crafts