Step by step guide to the perfect cozy day

Yes, it’s that time of the year already. Where accordingly to Mariah Carey’s song, snow should be falling all around us and people should be playing outside and having fun. Well, especially in my case that isn’t the way I see the winter season. Although many get fairly excited when snow starts to fall and the degrees start lowering, I am quite honestly the opposite. I highly dislike the cold and snowy weather, because even though it may be beautiful and in December the Christmas spirit hits me and I get all jolly, during the rest of the time when I go outside I have to layer myself with a lot of clothes and start regretting my existence. For this reason the only thing that gets me excited about winter is that I could use the cold as an excuse to sit at home and cozy up in front of the fireplace alongside a nice book. Since I am sure that a lot of you are just like me and prefer to be lazy at home rather than to leave the house and walk in the snow, I wanted to show you how my perfect winter cozy day looks like. I believe that all the activities I have included in this blogpost are not only suitable for winter time, but will also be very helpful if you want to rest, relax and forget about your stressful daily life at work or school.

Step 1 – Find a spot and fill it with blankets and pillows – what would a cozy winter day be without warm blankets and cute pillows. Whether you will place them on your bed, couch or floor, just lay them on the place you have chosen and put as many as you can. It will not only look very cute and cozy, but if in some case you get cold or start falling asleep you won’t need to worry about getting up from your cozy fortress.

Step 2 – Pick a favorite activity – Whether you are a book worm or a movie addict, it doesn’t matter, choose a desired activity, which could keep you distracted from your work and will really help you to stop thinking about your stressful week or things that need to be done. The cozy day is all about me time.

Step 3 – Pour yourself a hot drink – Drinking a warming drink is an essential thing to do during the winter season. It not only warms up your whole body, but also heart. I personally am a chocolate addict, so my absolute favorite winter drink would of course be hot chocolate. But since I am trying to follow a healthy lifestyle and try to lower my sugar and dairy intake, I have found an alternative to regular hot coco. I consists of non-dairy milk(I use almond), natural cocoa, sprinkle of cinnamon and vanilla and some natural sweetner(honey, agave, etc.). Just put all the ingredients in a sauce pan and leave them to simmer for about 5minutes. After that you got yourself a healthy winter drink, which still tastes as delicious and maybe even better. Another drink which I really like having on a cold winter nights is mulled wine or just some classic tea.

Step 4 – Light it up – What would a cozy day be without the smell of cinnamon or vanilla. I am true lover of aromatic candles since I was a little girl. I even remember that, every time we went Christmas shopping with my mother the first store we stopped by was the candle store, where I spent about an hour smelling all the candles that were for sale. Even if somehow you are scared of fire or happen to dislike candles, you can also switch on some Christmas lights and use them as a cute decoration.

Step 5 – Dress up – who said that you can’t look cute at home. What is a perfect cozy day without a comfy outfit to match? Put on your favorite pajama or oversized sweater, throw on some fluffy socks and slay your lazy day at home.

I am wearing pajama from Oysho

Step 6 – Treat yourself – Would it be me if my perfect day didn’t include food? I can’t imagine a day at home without a snack or a dish to munch on. Honestly one my favorite things to have on a cold winter day is either a warming soup or a spicy Indian curry. Of course there are times that I feel to lazy to cook and just snack on my favorite dark chocolate.

Step 7 – Pamper yourself: what’s a perfect day at home without putting on your favorite face mask, using your favorite body lotion and just taking time to make your skin glow up.

Well, I guess that’s a wrap. Honestly whether you choose to follow those steps or not, the only thing that actually matters is to really take this time to relax and treat yourself with the things you love. We all have a very stressful lifestyle and often forget about the small things in life that can make us smile. It doesn’t matter if you are wearing a cute sweater or a stolen old shirt from your dad’s closet, relax, forget your worries and enjoy yourself.

“Meatless” balls with roasted red pepper sauce

It’s December, the temperature outside is below 0 degrees. Meaning that the only thing I am willing to do in this freezing weather is to sit at home and enjoy myself. But let’s be honest what’s a perfect day at home without a favorite comfort meal? As every other Sunday when I have finished all my work, I like to head to the kitchen and experiment with different ingredients and dishes. This particular Sunday I was craving a comfort meal, which could still be healthy and delicious. Inspired by the famous American recipe – meatballs in tomato sauce, I came up with the so called “meatless” balls, which consist of buckwheat and spices. To level up the traditional tomato sauce, I added some roasted peppers, which gave the dish a nice kick. Since I felt like my Sunday experiment was successful, I decided to share it with you. It’s fairly easy to make and it is perfect for a family lunch or dinner.

Ingredients:

For the “meatless” balls:

1/2 cup of buckwheat

1 carrot

1 onion

1 garlic clove

1 tsp. Cumin

1 tsp. Oregano

1 tsp. Paprika

1/2 tsp. Nutmeg

Parsley

2 tbsp. Flour

*Note: feel free to replace the buckwheat with lentils, chickpeas or any other legume

Salt & Pepper

For the sauce:

1 can tomatoes

1 clove of garlic

3 roasted peppers ( you can also use raw)

1 tsp. Basil

Salt & Pepper

1 tsp. Spicy paprika(optional)

Salt & Pepper

What to do?

  1. Cook your buckwheat according to the instructions on the package until softened
  2. Meanwhile, cook onion and carrot in a pan with some olive oil until softened
  3. When your buckwheat is ready, drain it and wash it thoroughly with some cold water to stop the cooking process
  4. In a blender, process first the parsley, veggie mixture and spices
  5. Add the buckwheat and blend again
  6. Transfer in a big bowl add the flour, mix with your hands and start forming medium sized balls as you would to for regular meatballs
  7. When done, place in the 190 C preheated oven and cook for about 25 minutes or until firm and golden brown
  8. While waiting for the meatless balls to cook, make the red pepper sauce
  9. In a pan add some olive oil and roasted peppers
  10. Cook for about 3 minutes and add the spices
  11. Pour the tomatoes along with a dash of sugar
  12. Let the sauce simmer for about 10 minutes or until thickened
  13. When ready, process the sauce in a blender until smooth
  14. After your balls and sauce are done, it is time to plate
  15. In a spaghetti bowl, place some of the sauce on the bottom and put your balls on top, for some additional color chop up some parsley
  16. **For extra flavoring feel free to also add some Parmesan or any other kind of cheese

I hope you enjoy the recipe and let me know if you end up making it!!