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, 11 December 2017

Over our four Christmases together, Daniel hasn't had his own unique Christmas stocking, and that's always been something that I've wanted to change. I've looked in endless stores and online for something that would suit his interests - and wouldn't break the bank - but I never managed to find anything that I liked.



This year - especially these last few months - has made me feel a lot more confident in the area of making things. Whilst I mostly stuck to piΓ±atas for a while, I am slowly starting to delve into other areas  and work with materials that I had never thought I would work with before (like this project, for example). It's thanks to this newfound creative spark that I decided to personalise Daniel's stocking for him this year.

There was just one problem: I couldn't decide on what design! My first idea was Iron Man as he is Daniel's favourite Marvel character, but I also wanted to do something food related as it is something that we both love dearly, and it would go with the rest of our home decor. Instead of choosing one, I just decided to do both, and have a design on each side of the stocking. This way we can alternate each year - unless I decide to make a completely new one next year!

Both of these designs are super easy to do, but they make all the difference. I'm all about personalising things and decorating them so they remind you of something you like. If I didn't already have a stocking that I love, I would totally make my own - let's be real though, I'll probably make my own next year.


Share this project on Pinterest!


For the pizza stocking:

Materials:
πŸŽ…  One stocking
πŸŽ…  Brown, red, pink, and two shades of yellow paper
πŸŽ…  Fabric glue
πŸŽ…  Scissors
πŸŽ…  Glue stick
πŸŽ…  Pencil

Directions:
1. Sketch out the crust of the pizza on your brown paper for as many slices as you'd like to have on your stocking, then cut them out.

2. Place the crust pieces onto your red paper and sketch out the sauce portion of the pizza so that it's slightly thinner than the crust piece, then cut that out. Make sure to cut out a longer piece than you see in the photos as the crust will cover some of it up once it is glued on.

3. Glue your crust pieces onto your sauce pieces, then place them on your lighter yellow paper. Sketch out elongated triangle shapes, remembering to leave some room for your sauce and crust pieces to be glued to, then glue them onto the triangles.

4. Draw small rectangles onto your pink paper and cut them out, then draw small pineapple pieces on your dark yellow paper and cut them out. Stick both of these onto your pizza slices in a pattern of your choice, and ta-da! You now have living proof that you love pizza just a little too much πŸ˜‰



For the Iron Man stocking:

Materials:

πŸŽ…  One stocking
πŸŽ…  Red and yellow felt
πŸŽ…  White paper
πŸŽ…  Pencil
πŸŽ…  Fabric glue
πŸŽ…  Scissors
πŸŽ…  Black permanent marker

Directions:
1. Get a photo of Iron Man's mask that you'd like to have on your stocking up on your computer screen. Trace the outlines of the entire mask onto your red felt with your pencil, then hold your yellow felt up to the screen and trace around the yellow parts of his mask.

2. Cut out the red and yellow parts of the mask and glue the yellow on top of the red with a little bit of fabric glue. Draw the two "ear marks" with your permanent marker.

3. On your white bit of paper, sketch out the eye parts with your pencil. When you're happy with the design, go over it in permanent marker, cut it out and stick it onto your mark.

4. Glue your completed mask onto the middle of your stocking, and you're done! You could make the mask bigger than I did so that it takes up more room, or you could even do multiples of them and scatter them around the face of the stocking, whichever one you prefer!

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Do you usually go for the traditional red stocking, or do you prefer something more modern and personalised? If you've got your own DIY stocking ideas feel free to comment them down below, I'd love to hear about them!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 8 December 2017




How. Cute. Are. These. Cupcakes?! They are super easy to make as well. Perfect for a last minute treat - or even gift - around Christmas time! Making Santa cupcakes with mini marshmallows is certainly not a new thing; there's a plethora of variations floating around the internet, but I first discovered Baking Beauty's version thanks to Pinterest, and knew I had to give them a try.

I got the Christmas cupcake liners and the red sugar sprinkles from a Christmas cupcake making kit that I got last year (don't judge me), but you could easily go with plain red liners and make your own sugar sprinkles by mixing sugar and food dye together.

I went with good ol' classic vanilla cupcakes for these guys as they're super easy to make and I honestly think they're delicious. I also decided to cover them in whipped cream as I've talked about Australian butter not going as white as others', and I didn't want Santa to have yellow skin, so I improvised. I did the same thing for my sushi cupcakes, and both times it turned out really good.

Sprinkling the red sugar crystals was probably the most tedious part about this recipe as I wanted them to end in a very straight line, but the top line of mini marshmallows helped to hide any fallout. I didn't bother doing the end part of the hat simply because I didn't think of it, but I'm still happy with how they turned out.



For the eyes, I used tiny bits of black fondant as I didn't have any chocolate chips. I tried to cut up the chocolate melts that I had, but it was far too difficult. Fondant was a much easier choice, plus I love it so much more than chocolate (hope that doesn't make anyone too mad!) - and that's it! I told you these guys were super easy. 

I think Christmas baking should be all about the fun and whimsy of it all, so I didn't want to stress myself out by trying out recipes that were too advanced. Plus, I've been working on a lot of DIY projects with some materials that I've never used before, so that took up a bit of time as well. Don't worry though, this isn't the last of my Christmas recipes for this year, and I really think you're going to enjoy the others πŸ˜‹

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Is there any new Christmas-related recipes that you've tried this year, or ones that you'd like to one day try? It's never too early for me to start planning for next year, hah!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

I would like to both thank and apologise to my bank account for all the new Christmas items it has brought me this year. Endless materials for Christmas DIY projects, multiple packets of baubles (most of which didn't even get used!!!), a new star, heaps of novelty items, new string lights, a cookie jar, and other decorations have all found a new home in our tiny little unit - and I couldn't be happier.



Nearly everything you'll see in this post came from Kmart, Zing Pop Culture, Typo, eBay or The Reject Shop, but some things are from last year so they may not be available to purchase anymore. If you're wondering about a specific item, just leave a comment and I'll do my best to help you out!

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Admittedly, our tree looks pretty similar to how it did last year, but with a little more pink and a few extra novelty ornaments. Although they aren't pictured in this post, our presents actually aren't wrapped in pink and purple wrapping paper for the first time in years, as I decided to wrap Daniel's presents in the shape of things he likes. 

I already shared the cat and penguin presents that were inspired by A Beautiful Mess, and some of the others will be featured in an upcoming DIY gift wrap postIf you read my Christmas post last year you might have noticed that this year I decided to trade our star in for a pink one, and it's one of the best decisions I've ever made. I'm still dying for a pink tree, but haven't been able to find one in stores yet. 

Something that Daniel and I tend to do every year even though we try not to is let each other have a few presents early, and the silver disco ball lights that are draped around the tree are one of the presents that I was allowed to have early - as were both the Pusheen items. Many of our Christmas items were thrifted, such as the mugs, tins, and plates. The gumball machine ornament pictured below was a DIY project by Aww Sam that I tried out and I LOVE it. She is such a huge inspiration to me and I love everything she creates.




Due to the lack of good lighting in many rooms of our house, not all our decorations made it into this post. I also didn't include Daniel's stocking or our mini trees as they'll be featured in upcoming DIY projects - but believe me, they'll be worth the wait! I'll update this post with links to both projects once they have been posted. 

I'm really happy with both projects and, although I don't think any DIY project can beat my donut tree skirt, I think you guys will like them too! Tree skirts are my new favourite thing and I've already got heaps of ideas on what ones to make next year πŸ˜‚  

I also have a mini white Sailor Moon-themed Christmas tree in my room that I love so much I'm honestly thinking about keeping it up all year long! I couldn't wait to share photos of our tree with you guys, but I'd be lying if I said that this is our definitive decor for this holiday season. I still have a few DIY ornament projects that I found on Pinterest that I want to try out.

I also have a heap of mini Santa hats and mini bottle brush trees that I need to find something to do with as well. You can follow me over on Instagram to see any new Christmas decorations that I decide to put up as the months goes on. But enough about me, I want to hear about YOUR Christmas decorations!! 




Do you have a colour scheme that you like to stick to? Do you switch things up every year? Are you into the mini Christmas tree tend like me (we currently have FIVE πŸ˜…), or do you see no point in them? Also, are you a real or fake tree kind of person? Let me know! Feel free to link me any photos or posts featuring your decorations for the year, I'd love to see them!

Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 4 December 2017

It's finally here: my second ever original recipe to be posted on this blog! My first one was posted way back in June, and it was one of my most popular posts of all time - which encouraged me to start brainstorming more recipe ideas right away.

I actually came up with the idea for this post right after I posted my Pink Sugar Heart Attack cupcakes, but I wanted to wait until now to post it as it is inspired by Sailor Jupiter, and her birthday is December 5th!



Jupiter Coconut Cyclone is the name of  one of Sailor Jupiter's attacks in the Sailor Moon manga and Crystal adaption. I know most people will want to jump ahead to the actual recipe, but I just want to explain why I chose all the different components for this recipe that I did, as I think they're pretty genius.

First up, the two main parts of the attack are the words coconut and cyclone. Obviously, I decorated the top of the cake with coconut to cover the first part, and I chose to make a tall cake with a watercolour effect for the icing to make it seem like the cake is spinning, like a cyclone. 

The colours are green as that's Sailor Jupiter's main colour, and yellow to represent her lightning power, plus I made the buttercream lemon flavoured so that the zap-py/sour flavour would symbolise lightning as well. Pretty smart, right?! Anyway, enough self praise, let's get onto the recipe!

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Ingredients:
♡ One tall cake, or three mini cakes of the same size
♡ Shredded coconut
♡ Buttercream icing
♡ Lemon flavour extract
♡ Yellow food colour
♡ Green food colour

Directions:
1. If you're using three small cakes, place them on top of each other with some buttercream in between layers to keep them steady.

Pin this recipe to share with your friends!


2. Add some lemon flavour extract into your buttercream icing until you get your desired taste. Do a rough layer of plain coloured buttercream over most of the cake.

3. Put your cake onto a turntable. Split your remaining buttercream into two bowls. Tint one bowl yellow and the other green. I would suggest going easy on the green dye as a dark green won't mix in with the yellow too well.

4. With an angled spatula, scatter swipes of yellow and green buttercream on the cake. Make sure there's a somewhat even amount of both colours on the cake, vertically and horizontally. 

5. Get an icing scraper and slowly smooth out the swipes of coloured buttercream as you turn the cake. Add and remove icing as you see fit until the two colours are well blended together.

6. Put a few swipes of both colours scattered across the top of the cake. Smooth and swirl them together with the icing scraper until you're happy, then sprinkle with shredded coconut.

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The most important thing to remember when doing a watercolour effect is to take your time - which is something I am NOT good at, but I tried really hard to slow down and be careful, and I ended up being so pleased by the results. 


🍰  RELATED: Baking items that you DON'T need to splurge on. πŸ°

This was my first time trying out a watercolour effect on anything, and I'm really happy with it. I found this tutorial's GIFs really helpful with its GIFs with the turning motion. Remember to make more icing than you think you'll need as I always find it comes in handy!

Until next time,
Indya xx
This is definitely my DIY project that I have ever made! I can honestly say that I am so proud of myself for completing it. I worked with materials that I had never even held before and, even though I ran into a few problems (that caused quite a few tears), I was able to overcome them all - and I have something that I am so, so in love with as a result.



Working with clothing fabric was so out of my comfort zone - I mean, I've only just begun working with felt - and I had very little idea of what exactly I was looking for, but everything ended up working out, and now I have a donut under my Christmas tree! πŸ˜„ πŸ˜„ πŸ˜„

Before I get onto the instructions, I want to talk about how this idea came into fruition. You see, up until a few weeks ago, I had never even heard of a tree skirt. Daniel and I were trying to figure out where to put my donut bean bag once the Christmas tree went up, since the bean bag was sitting where the tree went last year. 

We both said how cool it would be to have the bean bag sit under the tree, but that wasn't possible due to the bean bag's size.Sometime after that, I stumbled upon this DIY project for a pizza tree skirt by Aww Sam (AKA, one of my biggest blogging and creative idols in the world) and I instantly thought: I could make a donut version

Once I had thought of it, the idea didn't leave my head. I was already in the middle of multiple DIY projects - as usual - but this one had to be done, and I had to start it ASAP.




Daniel drove me to Spotlight like the angel he is (for the second time that week too - Christmas really brought out my creative side!) and we stood in the fabric area for far too long feeling very overwhelmed by all the different kinds of fabrics, and whether or not the brown fabric should be warm or cool toned. 

Eventually we made our decision, and with two square metres of fabric and a few sheets of felt in our hands, we came home and started working on the tree skirt! You'll see in the instructions that we decided to use double-sided tape, which I have to credit Daniel for.

He immediately sprung into action with some alternative ideas while I was just a sobbing mess when I realised the fabric glue we had left some very obvious "glue marks" even when dry. 

If you're a more experienced DIY-er than I am and wish to sew or glue the fabric together, then I encourage you to do whatever you feel comfortable doing! Now, enough blabbering, read on to find out how to make this fabulous tree accessory!

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Materials +  Tools:
♡ Something sharp to mark the middle of your donut (I used a push pin
♡ String ♡ Felt in various colours 
♡ Masking tape ♡ Pencil ♡ Fabric glue
♡ Double-sided tape ♡ Scissors ♡ One metre square of brown fabric, and one metre square of pink

Directions:


1. Cut your string into the size that you want the radius of your circle to be. Attach one end of the string to your pencil with masking tape, and the other end to your sharp object. Starting with the brown fabric, put your sharp object where you want the middle of your donut to be. Since I was making mine on our carpet, I just stuck the push pin into the floor, but if you can't do that, you may need someone to hold it in place for you!



2. Pull the pencil attached to your string as tightly as you can and slowly draw onto your fabric as you move around to make a circle. If your pencil doesn't show up on your fabric, stick some masking tape onto the fabric and draw on that instead. Once you've drawn your circle, cut it out.

3. Detach the string from your pencil, cut off around two inches, then re-attach it. Lay out your pink piece of fabric and put the sharp object where you want the middle to be once again. 

Carefully draw onto the fabric or masking tape as you move around in a circular motion just like before. Cut out the circle, but this time cut out the edges in a wavy manner so that it looks more like icing on a donut would look.

4. To cut out the middle of the donuts, you could do the same trick with the string, remembering to make the hole on the pink fabric larger than the one on the brown fabric, or you could get two circular items - one bigger than the other - and trace around them. Whichever way is easier for you! Remember to cut out the pink circle wavy once again so that it looks like icing.



5. Attach your pink circle to the top of your brown one in whichever way you choose. I personally laid mine out with the pink one on top and put a small piece of double sided tape under the edge of the pink fabric a few inches apart, and did the same for the inner circle as well. This won't be as durable as sewing or gluing would be, but it's not like this donut has to pass any vigorous tests or anything πŸ˜‰

6. Grab your felt and sketch out a bunch of sprinkles in various colours, then cut them out. I would recommend playing around with their placement on the donut before sticking any down. 

Whilst I usually love my donuts smothered in sprinkles, I think with this project less really is more. Once you're happy with where they're sitting, glue them on with a tiny dab of fabric glue - and ta-da! You're done! 

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If you managed to get through all of that without crying or nearly breaking your knees from kneeling on the ground, then you already did a much better job than me! Haha. I really hope you guys like this project as much as I do. I wanted to do something new and prove that I can do whatever I put my mind to even though I am lacking so many basic adult skills πŸ˜… 



I am really proud of myself for coming up with this project and actually making it. I am also now so in love with tree skirts and already have about five ideas for next Christmas - I'm really not joking!! 

I hope you all have a wonderful and fabulous Christmas, and if you recreate this project leave me a link or send me a photo, I would love to see you do way better than me πŸ˜œ

Until next time,
Indya xx

Friday, 1 December 2017

NOVEMBER RECAP

TV Shows/Movies:

Thor: A Dark World: As much as I enjoyed this movie, the entire plot was based off a plethora of coincidences and unlikely events all happening at the exact moment that they needed to, which annoyef me a little. I adored Loki's character just as much as I did in the other movies I have seen him in; I love his cheekiness, and his unpredictability. The ending of this movie completely blew me away, and I was quite interested in how Ragnorok was going to pick up afterwards.

Thor: Ragnorok: Ahhh... this is still a relatively new movie, so I don't want to spoil anything for those who haven't seen it, but this was by far the worst Thor movie yet. It was probably my least favourite Marvel movie yet as well. There were far too many jokes. Every five seconds something incredibly cringe-y happened, it was like a 15-year-old dude wrote 90% of the dialogue. 


I understand that there needs to be some comedic scenes to break all the tension, but this was far too much. It was like they were trying to outdo Deadpool, but they did it badly. That being said, I loved the fighting and action scenes. They definitely made the entire movie worth it. I especially loved Thor's fighting scenes towards the end of the movie; they were awesome - and, as always, Loki is still my favourite. But, yeah, I won't be rushing to buy the DVD when it comes out.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine (season four): This show is one of my favourite things in the world - not just one of my favourite shows, but one of my favourite things, out of everything there is in the world. The last season's cliffhanger tore me to pieces and I am so glad that I finally got to see how it worked out - only for this season's cliffhanger to rip my heart into a million pieces all over again! I enjoyed this season just as much as the rest of them, and I can't wait to see more.


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Little updates:

♡ I bought myself Taylor Swift's new album the day it came out and while some songs took a while for me to warm up to, I can honestly say that I love this album. With the exception of New Year's Day which I just cannot get into, it's such a fantastic assortment of songs. I Did Something Bad, Don't Blame Me, Getaway Car, End Game and This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things are constantly on repeat in the car (sorry, Daniel!).

♡ The results for the plebiscite to see whether us Australians wanted marriage equality to be legalised were released and I was actually blown away by the answer: the majority of Australia believes that it should be legal, how great is that?! I had never been more proud to live in this country than that day. I've heard that they're trying to have it legalised before Christmas, and as always, the pessimist realist inside me doesn't want to get my hopes up just yet.




NOVEMBER GOALS: HOW I WENT

1. Complete the majority of my December content.
Yes! I have been working super hard on my December blog posts. Just last Saturday I completed seven posts in the one day! The only unfinished posts left are ones that I still need to make or do something for, but will be easy to complete once I have everything that I need.


2. Deep clean the kitchen.
YES. Daniel and I got the entire house spotless for our inspection (which took less than 5 minutes) and it's made me so much happier to work and relax in such a clean and tidy house. I've even been doing the dishes as I use them and it honestly makes me feel so good about myself! Is this what being an adult is like?!


3. Start organising our holiday.
I'm going to be cheeky and let myself cross this one off the list even though all I did was buy and suitcases pick out the bathing suit I want. I haven't actually bought it yet, but I know where it is! πŸ˜… πŸ˜‚


4. Clean and put away snow boots.
Nope. I even tried to palm this take off to Daniel, but I forgot to remind him about it so it never got done. Oops!


5. Organise Daniel's side of the office.
And no, yet again. I'm not going to bother continuing this goal next month once again as it has to be done in order to fit all of Daniel's presents in the office, but I am kind of disappointed in myself for not doing it sooner.


                                                                                                             ~

3/5 really seems to be the average, huh? I've said before that 3 feels like a good number to me; it's more than half, and that's a win in my eyes. Maybe 2018 will be the year that I start consistently achieving five out of five goals! We can only hope.



DECEMBER GOALS
1. Donate belongings to charity store.
I've been filling bags with things to donate to charity stores all month, and I am really proud of how much I am getting rid of. I even de-cluttered my make-up collection (don't worry, I'm not donating any used items)! I want to have at least two full bags by the end of the month.


2. Find homes for all newly acquired items.
Since I picked out all my presents from Daniel, I already have a rough idea of where they're going to go, but I really want to make sure I put away everything that I acquire over this month so that the house doesn't feel messy or crowded.


3. Get remaining items for our holiday.
Bathers are the most important thing that we need to buy, but we'll probably also look around for beach towels and maybe some goggles. I also want to pick up some bath bombs so I can take advantage of that hotel bath every single night we're there like I did at the snow! I can't have baths at home because our bathroom has two permanently open windows which means it's always FREEZING in there.


4. Make more time for reading at home.
Due to mine and Daniel's very opposite schedules, I often get to work a few hours early, or have to wait around a few hours afterwards, which I use to get some reading done since I'm not at home being distracted by my computer, but I'd like to read a lot more books next year considering I've only read 29 so far this year (which is just awful compared to last year's 64), meaning I need to increase my reading time.


5. Work on January's blog content.

These last few months coming up with blog content has been a dream. There's been so much going on - my birthday, Halloween, Christmas, end of the year - and I've had so many ideas that I have had to scrap multiple posts just so I wouldn't overwork myself. I even added a new post per week for all of December and could have easily kept going, plus I've got February's blog posts planned as well, but I've only got a few ideas for January and need to work on them now so I'm not stressed out later on.

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What are some of your goals for this month?

Until next time,

Indya xx

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

I had seen barely any Christmas movies before this year, until I decided to watch all the ones that looked interesting and were available on the Australian Netflix and STAN (review post on them all coming soon), but How The Grinch Stole Christmas is one that I first watched many years ago.



Granted, the last time I watched it hasn't been for many years either, but I do remember adoring it. I particularly enjoyed the soft, almost rose-y look that each scene had, if that makes any sense. It was like the entire movie had a magical, glowing filter to it. 

Anyway, when I saw these super cute Grinch sugar cookies floating around on Pinterest, I fell in love with them. The simplicity of their design meant that I could actually make them, and I love that they say so much by doing so little. Everyone can look at them and instantly know what movie - and, even more specifically, what scene - they are referencing, and I love that. 



I knew I had to make them, but I've already made sugar cookies quite a few times and wanted to try making brownies again since I enjoyed them so much the first time, so that's what I did! I tried out this recipe for chocolate brownies and they were ah-ma-zing.

I decided to make buttercream for my icing as it is easily one of the most delicious things in the world, but I didn't have any red heart sprinkles, so I dyed some white ones with red food dye! I'm super happy with how they turned out. I made sure to let them dry for quite a while before pushing them onto the buttercream icing as I was worried the red dye might bleed into the buttercream. I am so glad it didn't!



When it comes to Christmas movies, I think it's safe to say that How The Grinch Stole Christmas is pretty much a classic - and one that I actually like, too! You'll see what I mean when I post my other Christmas movie reviews. I also really like the Santa Claus trilogy; they're some of the very few movies I actually own on DVD. What are some of your favourite Christmas movies?


Until next time,
Indya xx

Monday, 27 November 2017

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Stockings are one of my favourite things about Christmas (then again, what isn't?) and I love that you can fill them with fun, often silly items that don't usually cost too much, but are still guaranteed to put a smile on the recipient's face.

I love novelty items that you know you don't really need, but still want regardless. My favourite type of Christmas gift guides to read are the ones about stocking stuffers, so I knew I had to eventually write my own. 

There's not much of a theme to these items, they're all just fun and random things that won't break the bank, but also aren't too cheap-looking either. Enjoy!




More fun stocking stuffers:
Rainbow scratch art sticky notes.
 Wonder Woman pencil case.
 Cat cheese grater.
 "Be Nice" patch.
 Willa Wonka Bar journal.
 Justice League paperclips.
 Star Wars Light Saber chopsticks.

What are you hoping to find in your stocking this year?

Until next time,
Indya xx