The Small Adventurer

Just a small girl trying to make the most of the world that she is both perpetually terrified of, and amazed by.

Monday, 23 October 2017

This post features an affiliate code. To find out what that means, check the disclaimer at the bottom of the page, or in my about page.

As a collector, my house is ever-changing. I am always needing to rearrange and get rid of things to make room for all the new things I constantly buy. I first shared some (awful) photos of my home office in November last year, then showed some newer photos of it for Organise Your Home Office Day back in May, but a lot has changed since then so I think it's time for another update post!





The wall behind my desk is an important part of the room to me. I want to make sure that is always promotes happiness, positivity and creativity, as I am very influenced by my surroundings. 


I try to make sure that I'm always surrounded by things that I love, as they always put me in a good mood. I actually decided whilst I was taking all these photos that the wall could use an update, so I took down some of the smaller items and replaced them with two cards I got for my 21st, and a pretty photo from a Frankie magazine.





My desk itself also needs to be bright and colourful so that it can promote positivity as well. The macaron (not macaroon like it says!) erasers and hamburger sticky notes are the two newest additions - both from Kmart - and I think they are so fun and cute! After I took these photos I also picked up their wooden rainbow pencil holder to 
bring even more colour to my workspace.


The shelf behind my desk is my Pokemon shelf. I didn't bother to include photos of that in this post as not much has really changed other than I've now got a few more DVDs, a pizza cutter, and some cookie cutters. Once there's a significant change in my collection, I'll be sure to do an updated post.




I recently picked up these set of shelves after having absolutely nowhere to put my birthday presents, and now it's basically full 😅   On top are most of my Sailor Moon pins - which I shared in my second pin collection post - as well as some snowglobes. The first shelf holds the rest of my pin collection, plus some patches from the lovely Elorasaurus, which you can see better in this photo

The rest of the shelves hold my Powerpuff Girl Pop Vinyl set, some cute straws, a few birthday presents, my memory jar, and a ton of coloured paper! The cupcake beanbag was another birthday gift from a fantastic friend of mine (the same friend who bought me 24 donuts for my last birthday!), and I absolutely love it. It's the perfect place to read.





As for the shelves themselves, I love how crisp and white they are, but the side facing my desk was so empty and plain compared to the wall next to it, so I decided to add some colour to it! Printiki were kind enough to offer to send me 30 square prints of my choice, and I am so, so glad they did. 


Living in such a digital-dominated time, it's easy to forget the beauty of actually printing out your photos. I chose a handful of photos I've taken around Melbourne city that I'm really proud of and stuck them next to my desk and it's improved the atmosphere of my office even more.





I chose a couple more photos of me with Daniel and some friends to put on my shelves until I get frames for them, but the rest are for the scrapbook that I want to make at the end of this year. I've been keeping a memory jar all year so that I can make a scrapbook of all the best parts of this year, accompanied with photos and other memorabilia from each memory.

Thanks to Printiki I was able to get some prints of some of the recipes that I've tried and am really proud of, as well some photos of mine and Daniel's first holiday together! I can't wait to get started on this scrapbook, I've already got a good idea of how I want it set out. I'll be sure to share its progress with you guys as I haven't shown you a personal project like that since I gave you a glimpse into my art journal back in November 2016.





Printiki's website is super easy to use, plus they let you upload photos straight from Instagram and Facebook, as well as from your computer. There's also a few different options for sizes, shapes, borders, and captions. I chose to leave my photos plain, but next time I definitely think I'll get the retro version as they are super cute!


I haven't even told you the best part yet: I've got a free shipping code for you all! If you've never used Printiki before and would like to give it a try, simply use the code UZWC3CXF at the check out and your shipping will be completely free! Plus I'll get some credits to towards my next order, at no extra cost to you! Yay 😜




That concludes another home office tour! One day I'll show you Daniel's side of the office as he has some really cool game consoles and model boats, as well as a ton of Back to the Future, Rick and Morty, and Iron Man stuff. It just needs to be re-organised so you can actually see everything properly!

Until next time,

Indya xx
Related posts:
Candy Themed Home Decor Uncommon Goods Decor Wish List 
♡ Ice Cream Themed Decor 

Printiki were kind enough to send me 30 square prints in exchange for a mention on my blog. All photos printed were chosen by me, and all thoughts and words are my own. The code mentioned above is an affiliate code, which means that I will earn credits each time it is used, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting The Small Adventurer!

Friday, 20 October 2017

All my life I have been chasing happiness (haven't we all?), and now that I actually have it, I feel like I have to hide it. They say that misery loves company, but that's only true when it's around more misery - misery does not liking being around happy!

I'm not claiming that everyone else is miserable, but I have definitely noticed that many people are a little put-off by my constant smiling and general cheeriness. I know that being around someone who is constantly bubbly and peppy can be a little draining if you're not feeling up to matching their enthusiasm. At work we're always joking about how happy and energetic I am compared to everyone else, and I don't mind that. 




I understand that not everyone has as much energy as I do at 10 in the morning, and I certainly don't mind being known as the person who is always happy, but sometimes I really do feel like people are angry at my happiness. I've had complete strangers ask me in very begrudgingly tones what on Earth I'm so happy about, and I'm always left speechless. 


In my mind I'm thinking, Why wouldn't I be happy? I have a great life: I've got friends who I love, the best boyfriend in the world, extremely fulfilling hobbies, and a great job - but, of course, I don't say any of that. I just shrug and end up feeling guilty for being happy, and that is so unfair.

I know that everyone says this, but I've been through some pretty rough things. I grew up in a violent household, I moved schools many times due to bullying, I was in an abusive relationship, my house burned down, I'm estranged from my mother (actually, that's a good thing), and I struggle with anxiety


I have done the being sad thing. I have been the person who wallowed in their depression, who made bad choices just to try to get through the pain, who never wanted to live to see another day. I lost practically all my teenage years to being sad, and I refuse to lose anymore time to that toxic feeling.



I am so incredibly lucky and grateful that my life turned out the way it did; that I was able to distance myself from the things that were bringing me down, and work on bettering myself and my life. I still remember what it was like being that terrified, depressed 14-year-old, and that is exactly why I am the way I am now.

I know how bad life can be - how bad it was - and now that it's so much better, I am going to enjoy it. I am going to appreciate it. I am going to make sure that it stays this way, and only gets better.  I understand that being around happy people when you're struggling with something is difficult. You constantly compare yourself to them, and that leaves you feeling worse. 

I don't mean to imply that everyone is comparing themselves to me, not at all. I still compare myself to others far too often, and I know how easily that it can bring you down, but I don't think that despising people who are happy is the way to go. I think you should embrace their happiness, learn from them, make the changes that they made to see if they work for you. I am always trying to engage with people that I find inspiring because it's only going to help me be better at being myself. 



There's a common saying in the blogging world that should apply to everything in life: Community over competitionIf we look at one another with inspiration on our minds instead of jealousy, if we focus on helping each other rather than always trying to be the first one to reach the top, then we'll notice a real change in ourselves, and the people around us. Don't ever be the rain on someone else's parade, and don't ever let anyone dim your light. Continue to shine through it all. Hope you're all having a lovely week ✨

Until next time,

Indya xx

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

You guys, this is definitely my favourite post of mine so far. I had so much fun planning, making, and photographing these hilarious little cookies. These biscuit letter stamps are easily my favourite eBay purchase EVER (and I buy a lot of things off eBay!). I can't wait to play with them again!



After I saw Lovely Indeed make cookies with Mean Girls quotes on them, I was in love. What a fun - and delicious - way to celebrate a favourite movie or show! Whilst I have been very vocal about my love for everything from my childhood (such as Sailor Moon and Pokemon), I am yet to talk about how much I adore SpongeBob - which is crazy considering I watch it nearly every day!

So when I decided to make cookies inspired by quotes from a TV show, it was a no-brainer that I would choose SpongeBob. It has so many hilarious and iconic lines that even those who have hardly seen any of it would have at least heard of some of these quotes. 




I mean, seriously, you'd have to be living under a rock not to know SpongeBob's signature "I'm ready!" or the overplayed-but-never-gets-old "my leg!" cry from that random green fish, right?!

                                                                                                              ~

When choosing what cookies I was going to make I was originally going to go with shortbread as I'd never made that before, but I read that a lot of people had issues with it spreading out in the oven which would ruin my funny quotes, so I decided to stick with good ol' sugar cookies instead. 




I've tried a few different recipes for sugar cookies and they've all been fine, I don't know why I don't just stick with one to be honest! This time around I tried A Baking Moment's recipe for them as she guaranteed there'd be no spreading - and she was right! I also sprinkled some sugar over the top once they came out of the oven to make them just a little bit sweeter 😋

As you may be able to tell, I attempted to dye the cookies yellow to represent SpongeBob, but I added the dye last - because that's what four different recipes TOLD me to do! - and it just didn't work. I am now realising this is probably because I used a liquid instead of a gel, but oh well. We'll just pretend they're meant to be tie-dyed or something.



Surprisingly, I don't have a lot of SpongeBob items that I could use as props for these photos, so I had to make due with a few DVDs and two pins. I've shared 
part one and two of my enamel pin collection already, but in case you missed it, the Donut Gary pin is by The Sunday Co, and the Krusty Krab Pizza pin is from Pintoons, but it is no longer available.

                                                                                                              ~

The letter stamps came with a little "holder" to slide each letter into, which you then flip over and stamp onto the cookie, but I found it a lot easier and quicker to pick up each letter individually and stamp them with my hands. They end up a little wonkier that way, but I think it adds a cute, homemade touch to it!



To all the SpongeBob fans out there: have you seen all the episodes that these quotes are referencing? Is there any that you have never heard of before, or any that you can think of that I should have included? I wanted to include a line from the Krusty Krab Pizza song, but they all seemed to long to put on a cookie! Let me know which quote is your favourite 😊

Until next time,
Indya xx

This post is NOT in affiliation with Nickelodeon, nor am I making money off of this post. This is just a personal project to show my appreciation for the show.

Monday, 16 October 2017

I have not been baking for very long at all. The first time I made something by myself was back in February, when I baked a packet mix cake and attempted to pipe buttercream roses onto it. It didn't work, but I still learnt something - just like I do every time I try out a new recipe. 

Most of the things I learn are probably quite well-known; believe me when I say that I was less than a novice when I decided I wanted to give baking a try, so even the smallest things were brand new to me.




Like all good students who are trying to learn something new, I made notes. I wrote down anything that wrong, what I should try next time, and any little tips and tricks that I discovered along the way. I'm going to share some of those notes with you today. 


It'd be great if someone could learn something from these notes, but I am also partly sharing them just so we can all get a laugh out of my mistakes. I really hope in the future I can come back to this post and smile at how much of a beginner I was, and see just how far I have come.


THINGS I'VE LEARNED SINCE I STARTED BAKING


1. Shortcuts almost never work. In other words, if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is. I'm looking at you, writing icing in a tube!


2. When you think your icing is thick enough to pipe into a certain shape without it running, think again - and make it thicker.




3. Trying to decorate something to look like a person or character - or pretty much anything that has to look a certain way - is very difficult. Decorating something to just be colourful and pretty is much easier.


4. When using a piping bag, make sure your icing is packed tightly inside. There's nothing worse than having little air pockets throughout your mixture to mess you up whilst you're trying to ice a cake.

5. Remember to take your butter out of the fridge. I am so bad at this. I get myself all ready to bake something, then I realise the butter is still in the fridge, rock solid. On days that I forget, the first butter-softening hack on this list comes in handy, but I still need to get on top of remembering to take it out beforehand! I have also been told that you should take your eggs out of the fridge before you use them as well, although I don't always bother with this rule.


6. You don't have enough icing. Trust me, you just don't.




7. Read the comments. You've got to remember that most of the people who post recipes online are professional, or are at least pretty damn close. They know what they're doing, they know what mistakes to avoid, but you most likely don't. 

Reading the comments of other novice baker-wannabes like yourself will help you understand what issues they had, and how they fixed it - or if the recipe is just too damn hard, which sometimes it is! I've completely avoided recipes whose comment sections are filled with feedback that the outcome was nothing like the picture. I like a challenge, but if that many people had trouble with it, then I surely will too!

8. Let your cake cool completely before icing it. Do a crumb layer first, then leave that to set before doing your pretty layer. These are both such important steps if you want a beautifully iced cake, but if you're extremely impatient like me, they will be hard to get used to!

9. If you can, mix in food colours with a mixer to ensure that it is mixed in properly. Too many times have I began icing a cake only to realise half of the icing is still white!




I am well aware that I have still have a million and one more things to learn when it comes to baking. I have barely scratched the service on what it's like to work with dough - I haven't even tried making any kind of pastry yet! I am also yet to make royal icing the right consistency to pipe pretty pictures and patterns onto cookies like everyone else seems to be able to do, but I know I'll get there in time.

I have wanted to get into baking since I was little, and I am so glad I have finally started. I have collected baking items for years and never used them, and now I am on a mission to use them all (that's proving to be a little difficult though, as I just keep buying more!). I have discovered that I love creating in the kitchen - which really shouldn't be a surprise, since I've always loved creating. I've already improved so much in 8 short months, and I can only go further from here! I hope you all stick around to see what delicious creations I (try to) whip up 😋

Until next time,
Indya xx
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Friday, 13 October 2017

It finally happened: I tested out a Halloween recipe! Actually, if we're being honest here, the first Halloween recipe that I tested out was red devil meringues, but the meringues a) didn't turn red enough, b) didn't bake properly, and c) didn't turn out the shape that I wanted, so in the bin they went! (Okay, a few went into my mouth, but I got rid of the rest before I ate the whole batch myself!)

As this is the first time I'm trying out Halloween recipes, I chose the most simple ones I could find. I've been making meringues for, like, 10 years now so I thought they were going to be the easy recipe - but anyway, next on my list of recipes to try were these jelly worms!



I'm sure you have seen some sort of variation of these worms before; they seem to be all over Pinterest. For the worms, I followed the directions on Kidspot, but there's a few different ways you can make them. I've seen posts by people who used just flavoured gelatine, and some who used just jelly, but I was curious to see what using both gelatine and jelly would do. 

I personally didn't notice much of a difference, but my boyfriend - who eats a lot of jelly, and loves it - said the worms were a lot firmer with the extra gelatine in them. I guess that's so they hold their shape better!

The recipe on Kidspot uses Oreos (sans the cream) as the dirt, but as Oreos are quite expensive - and scraping the cream off them would be a nightmare - I opted for crushing up some Choc Ripple biscuits instead. They are just as delicious and a lot cheaper!

Making the jelly worms was honestly a nightmare. Pouring the jelly into the straws was messy - although not as messy as I anticipated - but getting the jelly out was the worst part. Since so much jelly seeps out of the bottom of the straws and fills up the container that they're sitting in, you have to pull the straws out of the set jelly, which is so much harder than it sounds! I ended up with really red, sore hands, and I accidentally scratched myself a few times as well.



Getting the jelly out of the individual straws was just as difficult, if not more. The directions suggest to use the edge of a knife in the same way that you would curl a ribbon, but curling a ribbon is much, much easier! Both my partner and I kept hurting ourselves trying to get the worms out (not on the actual knife as it was just a butter knife, but more so the actual act of "curling" the straw!). 

Eventually Daniel realised that it was easier - and faster - to just squeeze the end of the straw and run your clenched fingers down the straw until the jelly worm was pushed out of the other end. Once we figured that out, we progressed much more quickly.

To be honest, I wasn't able to eat more than two of the jelly worms because they creeped me out so much! They really do look like worms, and placing them in something that looks like dirt made me even more queasy. They really are perfect for Halloween, but I'd much rather make a treat that's pretty and pink 😂

                                                                                                              ~

How's October going for you so far? Tried out any Halloween recipes and/or DIY projects that you'd like to share? I'm always looking for inspiration!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

♡ I've been loving the illustrations that Cup of Jo features on her blog every Friday. This recent one titled 'Nice Moments' particularly resonates with me.

♡ I am constantly trying to think of ways to improve my general lifestyle and to limit the amount of time I spend cleaning and organising, and this article on improving your habitat rather than just your habits was a huge eye-opener. It has so many great ideas that I've never thought of!

♡ A new word for an old feeling that I really wish didn't exist (and no, I don't get what the author meant by that "dogs aren't even real" comment either).

 I really enjoyed this piece from Afro Mermaid on temporary relationships - not every friendship or relationship is built to last forever, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't appreciate them while they're there.

♡ This kit kat sushi by Sugar and Charm is even cuter than the sushi cupcakes I made a little while ago. *adds to to-do list*



 The most important type of relationship goals.


15 reasons why Monica Geller is an under appreciated character on Friends. This list made her see her in a completely new light!


♡ A truly important piece on how to beat FOMO as an introvert. This really helped reiterate the fact that I know I would be miserable if I had gone out, so I shouldn't beat myself up for not giving it a try. If you ever feel guilty for choosing a night in over a party or outing, then you should give it a read.

♡ This Halloween cookie bouquet by Make Bake and Celebrate is way too pretty eat, but I wouldn't mind giving it a try!

♡ Absolutely loved this post on choosing happiness, and how it's very different to just being happy. Great advice if you find that you're more unhappy than happy, as our way of thinking and perception of the world plays a major part in our overall happiness.

Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 9 October 2017

Welcome to part two of my pin collection! Part one featured all of my non-Sailor Moon pins, so today's post will be about all my pins relating to the Sailor Moon franchise. 

If I counted correctly, I have 37 non-Sailor Moon pins, and 61 Sailor Moon pins (I'm not including the ones that are currently on their way to me, but I am including ones that have arrived after I took these photos). I honestly thought I had more pins, but when you factor in how much the average pin costs, let's just say the results aren't pretty... but moving on!



My Sailor Moon pins are some of my favourite things I own, I can't go a day without looking at them. Please believe me when I say that these photos do not do these pins justice and that they are so, so much prettier in person. 

I will do my best to link every shop that I have purchased from, but as many of these pins are from the same shop it may be a little unclear about where I got which pins, so just leave me a comment if there's a specific pin that you would like to know about.

Sit down and get comfy, because this post is going to be pretty long! Keep in mind that a lot of these pins are limited edition and are no longer being sold, but I'll still try my best to link all the stores!




I will start with the extra pins that sit just above my Pokemon pins. These guys are my most recent purchases and don't fit in my pin house, which is pictured below. Even though Chibiusa is one of my favourite characters, I only have six pins that are related to her, and only one of them is a Black Lady pin - although I recently bought a second Black Lady pin that hadn't arrived before I took these photos. The Sailor Moon Bubblegum pin actually glows in the dark, which is absolutely amazing. The Disguise Pen pin (which is one of my favourite items from Sailor Moon!) was actually a seconds pin - the only seconds pin that I have ever bought - but you can't even tell that there's any flaws! 

The cute Chibiusa pin is from Moon Phase Pins, who is one of my favourite pin shops of all time. You'll see a lot more of her pins as we continue. The "Do Not Underestimate What Girls Can Do" pin, the Chibi Moon Compact pin + Star Locket pin are from another two of my favourite pin shops - Sugarbones and The Lantern Girl, respectively. The Lantern Girl is actually the main reason I fell in love with pins so much; at one point I was making $100+ orders from her at a time! Sugarbone is also a really inspiring artist of all mediums, not just pins.

The Usagi Bunny pin is absolutely gorgeous, but unfortunately you can barely tell in this photo. Since taking these photos I also received these Usagi's Bedsheets pins from Black Moon Clan, which I love just as much. Usagi's bed is so iconic!



Next up are these adorable Sailor Scout outfit pins from Miyuka on Etsy. They're different to my other pins since they aren't made from enamel, but I think they are absolutely gorgeous and deserved their own display board. The outer Scouts' outfits are also available, but as I am not yet familiar with those characters, I held off on purchasing their outfits. I am sure I will want them once I have finished the manga though!

                                                                                                              ~

Now onto my pin house. This was super difficult to get good photos of due to all the different colours of the pins, and the fact that the walls of the house kept giving off shadows where I didn't want them. You can still see the pins fine, but the photos just aren't as beautiful as what they all look like in real life.



The Sailor Scout heart-shaped outfit pins that are scattered around the top of the house are from Moon Phase Pins, as is the large Sailor Moon pin with the moon around her + pink background that is positioned at the bottom of the house. On the left side you'll see a lot of heart shaped pins: the top one is from Eerie Little, the bottom one is another Sugarbones pin - as is the large pin the very middle of the house - and the rest of the hearts on that side are from Lulu Bloo's Love Series, who is another one of my favourite pin makers. 

The circle-shaped Venus pin that's hiding amongst the hearts was a limited edition collaboration between Adam Grey Shop and Natty Cat Pins - the latter of which also made the Magical Girl Star Compact pin. The red bow pin towards the top of the house is from Di Depux, and over on the right at the top you'll see two Ami pins which are a collaboration between Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon on Instagram, and Basura Gang. The crying Sailor Moon pin that's in the very top right corner, the sleepy Sailor Moon directly underneath, and the Chibiusa Brat pin that on the bottom right, are all from Elorasaurus, who is another artist and creator that I am personally a huge fan of.



The Sailor Scout wand pins, the Crisis Moon Compact pin, the Chibi Sailor V pin, the Inner Crystal Star Compact, and the Sailor Moon eating cake pin are all from the amazing Lantern Girl. The Sailor Moon Dog Filter pin - along with the Luna Flower Crown Filter pin that's on the right - are both from Stami Studios, who also made the glow in the dark pin featured earlier. The Neo Queen Serenity pin is a collaboration between Moon Phase Pins and Shop Rozarria. The random tiny crescent moon pin is from eBay, and the small heart with the ribbon around it at the bottom right corner is from Colourfy Me.



We're on the home stretch now! The purple Tuxedo Mask pin is from Cherry Magic Club, the Sailor Moon + Tuxedo Mask pin is another one by Lulu Bloo, the Luna + Artemis pins are from Tee Fury, and I cannot for the life of me find out where I bought the Sailor Moon transformation pin! I've looked through my purchase history and am now just sifting through the abundance of Sailor Moon pins for sale online. Once I find the shop, I will update this post with the link!

                                                                                                              ~

Phew, we made it! That was a lot of talking, linking, and sub-par explaining, but I'm sure most of you only came for the photos anyway. Next time I have to do an update on this collection - which probably won't be that far in the future when you consider how often I buy pins - I might just include photos on the newer ones so that I don't have to take photos of the whole collection again, but we'll see what happens.

Have you dived into the whole pin and patch craze that's taken over the internet? Let me know what you think about it!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 6 October 2017

I read Writes Like A Girl's post about some of her favourite things back in September, and I loved the idea of sharing just a few, completely random things that bring you joy. I always try to focus on the positives, and I definitely think it's the little things in life that matter most. 



Today is World Smile Day, so I thought it was a perfect opportunity for me to list some of my favourite things in the world that always put a smile on my face, and I'd love for you to leave some comments about some of your favourite things as well!

Help spread the word about this fun and uplifting novelty holiday by promoting happiness and kindness in any way that you can. Remember that even the smallest compliment or gesture could mean the world to someone else!



There's a lot of things in this world that I love, but just a few things that are coming to mind right now are:

peanut butter and jam sandwiches
books that entrance me
otters
the endless amount of animal videos online
hot drinks on a cold night
musk sticks
good photo taking - and editing - days

teacup pigs
the sun shining through the window while I'm at my desk
passionfruit
household items shaped like food
when you're laughing so hard your eyes start watering

donuts
the smell of coffee
kind and genuine comments from strangers
BOOTS
seeing my average page views rise each month
trying out new recipes
kid's movies
receiving mail
                                                                                                              ~

What are some of your favourite things in life? I love hearing about what makes others happy!

Until next time,
Indya xx
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