Thursday, 7 December 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #263 Tonic Experiment

My tonic is usually without lemon, but still nice and bitter!
It's been a mixed week of outings, including lunch with a friend and routine doctor's appointment, and resting in between. The other day I mentioned a tonic experiment I was doing. Basically Sainsbury's changed the ingredients in their diet tonic water, excluding sugar in exchange for what I think is a sweetener. 
Sorry it's blurry, it's the only one close to the label I get!

I understand why they do that, and that doesn't bother me (although some sweeteners can give me a headache, which is often why I drink tonic in the first place). Unfortunately when I tried the new version of the tonic I thought I'd accidentally picked up this. 
Yes, lemonade, not tonic water. The new recipe diet tonic water tastes like it is the Sainsbury's lemonade, only without the lemons, of course. I've nothing against lemonade (just not keen on it these days), but I specifically drink tonic water when I'm not feeling well, for a headache or on general bleh days which are more numerous in winter. I like the bitter taste which just isn't in Sainsbury's new diet tonic water. Thus the experiment began. 
This one is very good! Although I'd rather non-branded for cost purposes...
The experiment is still ongoing, but so far Schweppes diet tonic water tastes like tonic water should! Yay! I've got Sainsbury's non diet tonic water to try (although by the rate they are removing full sugar squashes I'm not sure how long this may be available if it tastes right for me. Obviously encouraging healthy drinking is good...but personally I feel that only giving customers once choice of drink (reduced sugar/diet) is policing consumers a bit too much), as well as Schweppes non diet tonic water. I tried Waitrose in the past but didn't like it at all, and I don't really shop anywhere else, so don't want to go out of my way for just one product. It may have to be Schweppes, but that's better than nothing.
Still got this one to try! & 1 more
I'd love to know if you have a preferred brand of tonic water! I love the sharpness and the bubbles when I don't feel well, and staying hydrated is super important. 
Random pictures of the day - Puffins are such cute birds!!

Monday, 4 December 2017

Nayu's Jigsaw Puzzling #2

What's in my jigsaw case this week?

November saw the start of a new post series all about my experiences doing jigsaw puzzles. You can catch up with the first post here. I'll try and put the previous jigsaw post's link in each post, and it can be found by searching on the tag Nayu's Jigsaw Puzzling.

Today is all about a speedy (maybe?) puzzle I did the other day, and my current big one. The other day I took 1 hour and 20 minutes from start to finish to complete this super cute owl jigsaw:
It made me smile while I had a headache (which made me feel bad, I wasn't able to read, do anything with a screen). Small puzzles are easy-ish to do lying down. It's the first puzzle that I've done from Scmidt, and I was rather impressed. 
 It may 'only' be a 200 piece puzzle, but it's not a quick finish when my mind is slow. I like the bright colours: owls have gained in popularity over the last few years and there are lots of cute designs for all kinds of products. 

One really cool puzzle that I couldn't show you until know because a family member had similar items for their birthday is this Tsum Tsum 1000 piece jigsaw!

I know it says impossible, and it looks hard, but it's not. I've completed the edge and now sorting the pieces into categories: scary tsum tsums, Disney tsum tsums, Pixar tsum tsums, unknown pieces where the image isn't clear or I have no idea where it's from.
This was when I was sorting the edge pieces: the piles are for the top/bottom/left/right sides. Please excuse the image quality - it was taken on my tablet.
Once I've done that I'm going ot sub categorize into male/female, Disney collections (Mickey & friends, Winnie the Pooh & friends etc), and possibly by colour which should make it much easier to put together, with all the tsum tsums in pre-sorted (by me) piles. I can't imagine doing the puzzle any other way, including just picking up unsorted pieces and spending ages trying to figure out where they would go - that would take forever!

I'd love to hear if you're doing a puzzle at the moment - do you like ones with lots of different colours? Or ones which are harder because a lot of puzzle pieces are the same colour? 
A good & true saying

Saturday, 2 December 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #263 Condensed Milk With A Pea

Passing time can be marked by a sundial  I love this elaborate one! It's so colourful.
I hadn't realised it was that long since my last post (maybe 2 weeks...sorry!). I know I had a week being away with the fairies thanks to my strong meds, then it was mega cold so I wasn't up to much. I did visit my craft friend on Tuesday, but didn't do much crochet! Well, I sort of did, but for once I couldn't talk and crochet at the same time which led to mistakes, undoing, and redoing of a few squares.

The cold weather is here to stay, unfortunately, so will be unwell a lot until Februry - my body hates it being under 10C, and under 5C I don't really function. I have a handy weather app to look ahead on when there might be a rise in temperature. It uses a term called RealFeel which calculates how we perceive the temperature according to wind/sun/other factors. So sometimes it may be 7C but it feels like 3C (or in the minus figures). Feeling like I'm fighting a virus all winter isn't fun, but all I can do is rest lots and pray for an early Spring.
My current passion
When it's cold I like curling up and gaming, occasionally reading, but often watching dvds or listening to audiobooks with simple handheld gaming rather than console gaming. If you follow me on Twitter you'll know I've been busy jigsaw puzzling - I'll be doing an update in the next post which will be in 2 days time (I've pre-scheduled it!!!).

You are probably trying to get your head around this post's title. It's an amusing incident that happened the other day. Me and my family freeze mostly any food. They'd put a partially used can of condensed milk upright in the freezer. They were getting something else and saw the tin of condensed milk had tipped over and there was a sticker mess in the freezer drawer-apparently it doesn't freeze solid! There wasn't a lot of it left in the tin so I took it, had it with frozen berries and even made delicious hot chocolate.
Not this guy... of these!

It was doing the latter that I made the startling discovery of a green blob. Initially I wondered if it was mouldy, but it didn't smell and it tasted fine. My family took a look and instantly knew it was a pea - it must have got in accidentally when it was set upright after it's fall. So no, I don't eat peas with condensed milk - or, as the famous nursery rhyme goes, with honey. That doesn't sound at all appetising to me!
Have you heard this poem before? It was common when I was young here in England.
Today's food issue is to do with the brand of tonic water I use changing it's recipe to have sweetner instead of sugar, which shouldn't affect the bitter taste but it has so I need to investigate another brand that tastes like it should instead of like the same brand's lemonade (without the lemons). 

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Nayu's Jigsaw Puzzling #1

My snazzy jigsaw case outside...

This is going to be an open-ended series of posts, but used the parts so it could be identified (& I'll try to remember to include previous posts in future posts (that does make sense if you read it carefully!). 

While I was ill last week I didn't feel up for gaming a lot of the time, so dived into my jigsaw puzzles. I finally finished the super hard one I'd borrowed from family. 
If you enlarge this picture you may be able to see the different types of puzzle pieces which made it difficult.

This one was evil because as well as using the standard type of jigsaw pieces 
Like these
it used unusual shaped ones. 
Like these but with more radical shapes - some had no holes!

Because of that I found it took a lot longer because my brain had to process the different shapes, and I won't be doing another in a hurry, at least not until I've improved with 'normal' shaped jigsaws. I was rather frustrated by the end, and was determined to finish the monstrosity. I'm happy now back to normal pieces, which if you follow me on Twitter you may have seen me post updates as I made progress. In case you missed it here's the progress of my current 500 piece Country Companions puzzle: 
Super cute! I love the little ladybirds helping the hedgehogs and mice out.
I've loved Country Companions ever since I was little, there's something utterly charming about the hedgehogs and mice. Sadly years ago I threw out all the cross stitch pictures I'd done of them, but one day I'll make some more! (Tip: Keep an eye in sales for cross stitch kits which generally are expensive outside of favourite online store Sew & Sew (no it's not a promoted post: I genuinely predominantly use them for my embroidery needs) 
Current progress on 14th November 2017 - I'm over half way!

500 pieces and under jigsaw puzzles are easier for me to do in bed, the 1000 piece was impossible to do at my roughest. Just because there are fewer peices doesn't always mean that the puzzle will be easier - it took me ages to sort out the flower sections in my current puzzle. I got there, and managed most of the hedgehog pieces too! I'd love to hear what type of jigsaw puzzles you've tried! 

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #262 Postal Competition (That isn't an NCD competition)

Still dreaming of an American style post box!
Sorry if the title is misleading - this isn't a competition to do with the postal service! It's basically because yesterday I saw 1 postman with shorts on. I asked if he was cold and he said no, and that he can't lose against our other postman. I saw the other one today and yes, he was wearing shorts too! I guess if they are moving around a lot they will stay warm, and since they keep wrapped up with scarf and gloves they may not feel the cold so much, though I still feel a bit sorry for them, even though it's self-inflicted. 

I'm staying nice and toasty inside! The colder weather has begun in earnest, so lots of rest is happening while my body goes on strike. I managed to bake a super yummy vegetable dish yesterday: peas + sweetcorn + baked potato + broccoli + beansprouts + bechemal (white) sauce = winter warmer meal! I haven't got a picture yet - will add one in the next post, but it's delicious (included stock cube & grated mild chedder cheese), and I'm having it for lunch today! (I eat my main meal at lunch)
Too perfect to be my picture! Plus I didn't add herbs.
 Will post my recipe when I do get a picture, but you can put whatever veg you like in (& I guess add meat if you want). I simply Googled a white sauce recipe as I haven't made one for yonks, cut up the potato and broccoli super small, (not quite as small as the peas and sweetcorn), cooked everything in the microwave for speed (separately but only takes a few minutes unlike the many more minutes if I'd cooked it on the hob. My kind of cooking is super fast!), made the sauce then mixed it together! Simple! 

I've been busy working on jigsaw puzzles, something I'll discuss in the next post. Until then...

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Currently unwell

Not mine but a randomly cute picture of cat plushies!
I'd hoped to post the recipe for my roasted veg & feta couscous salad by now, and scheduled a few other posts, but I've been unwell since yesterday (nothing specific, just my body being very stupid and annoying), so it will be a few more days until anything new gets put up. I'm resting lots with gaming, jigsaw puzzle when I feel up to it, reading and anime! I hope you're all getting something happy into your days and stay away from germs! 
I found this amusing!

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Nayu's Product Review #5 Limited Edition Morrisons Orange Donuts

This is the cutest halloween themed image I could find - hate it, but love Hello Kitty and actually love bats so her cute belt appeals to me!
Donuts can be doughnuts but somehow donuts looks better to me! I really hate halloween - I find it too scary, and belief wise I believe in supernatural things but they are best left alone and may God protect us from them all. It's frustrating because the celebrations even reach games that I play - you'd think that Disney would make super cute halloween decorations in The Magic Castle games for the 3DS (Japanese version) but no, they are scary and the worse thing it started in September and possibly won't end until the christmas season starts! Sigh. 
Not my pics, but this is what it looks like - scary!
The only good thing about it is that the game Love Live School Idol Festival which has a tendency to dominate my Twitter feed has lots of bonus log-ins because of Halloween. 
I got some of the bonuses, not all, sadly. These were on both the JP & WW server.

Wait, I almost forgot the main reason why I'm writing this post - the food! The other great thing about halloween is that there are some time limited food. Most of the treats I don't like because they look scary, but while at work the other day one of my family saw people eating Morrisons halloween donuts. 
Had not idea this supermarket has been going over 100 years!

It was a bit of a case of me misinterpretating what was said because I thought they were in the shape of a pumpkin and tasted of orange but may have pumpkin in too (I really like pumpkin! I totally live on the wrong continent for pumpkin flavoured food at this time of year (*waves at America*)). 
I Googled the donuts, didn't get a lot of info easily so I turned to Twitter, where the lovely Kirsty contacted the manager (or deputy manager) of my local store, and answered all my questions. There's nothing pumpkin-y about these donuts as you can see! 

Anyway, I was going to go out today and get some, but my family got me some instead, saving me a trip. They are super yummy! 

For Twitter purposes I took a picture of the donuts (slightly squashed from cutting it in half) to show the orange centre which reminds me a little of the Little Chef Restaurant lollies from my childhood which still exist as I discovered this year. It isn't too sickly or sweet for me, it makes a nice change from other jams, and I'm looking forward to what gets brought out next year! I highly recommend them except today will probably be the last day they are available. So go get yours fast! 

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #261 My cat hates the music I love!

I listen to both audiobooks and music, the latter being the topic of this post.
While I have zero knowledge of current music (both type, the most popular singers/bands, etc), I'm very familiar with Winx Club music (soundtrack of the series), with a preference for the French version since I generally watch it in French not English. 
Best CD ever!!!!

However, my main music comes from Youtube, because that's where I listen to Vocaloid music. Which my cat doesn't like. 
Her back is what I saw leaving my room!
For ages I always wore headphones because she can be fussy with noise. Over the past few months I'd been training her to get used to noise, or so I thought. Yesterday I was listening to my favourite Vocaloid Hatsune Miku on Youtube. 
Love that I can both play Miku games and listen to her online!
Belle's ears were back a little while she supposedly slept, but it got to the point where she got up and went away. I'm convinced it's because of Miku! I will now listen on headphones as I love having her curled up beside me... this!
Does your pet like what you listen to? I know my birds, Tomoya & Hibiki chatter away to whatever I put on, so they at least seem to like Miku. Vocaloids aren't universally loved though, unfortunately, as Belle demonstrated. Didn't stop me playing Miku songs on the playstation this morning - PS4 has headphone slot in controllers reducing amount of wires needed. Bit busy tomorrow and got a friend over all day Thursday so having quiet time gaming/anime watching between those activities. 

Friday, 20 October 2017

Over on Nayu's Reading Corner #7 Got a new toy!

If you follow me on Twitter you'll know what it is!
This week got a bit busy, and I have to get offline asap - find out why over on my other blog, Nayu's Reading Corner! Yes it's game related ^u^

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #260 Finally back!

You will never catch me doing this - I hate heights, and don't have the physical strength to do it!
Feels like ages since I last blogged! My mega meds did their job, although I seemed to skip a day of wanting to climb walls (which is absolutely horrid and have no idea how drug addicts cope with that symptom) and instead have an extra 2 days of feeling bleh. It could just have been bad timing, as the weather was quite bad (go me for having a body as a weather vane), but I'll happily take it than constantly needing to do something due to constant restlessness. 

I had a day of two where I could game (yay!) which was mostly tablet games as anything else involved too many screen changes, or weird screen changes that I just can't cope with after my mega strong meds. I then hit the stage of being unable to stand anything with a screen, so I caught up on my review reading, which was fun. I did manage a tiny bit of work on this blanket, which I hope to finish soon, life depending of course! 
It's far bigger than this now, just having got an updated photo to hand

The next few months are quite busy with a secret project which I can reveal in January - it's not as exciting as it sounds, but is going to take a lot of my energy. There's also something super fun on my horizon, which isn't craft but it's gaming! 

A game I'm currently working my way through is Atelier Rorona, a Japanese role-playing game on the PS3 (the worst in the series as it's severely time restricted which I hate. Thankfully the others aren't so bad, according to reviews). 
It's alchemy based, so there are lots of recipes to create new items (once I've gathered the supplies from either the various locations to travel in or bought them in town), some monsters to slay, and people to chat with. All highly enjoyable...except the time limit to completing the mandatory tasks is severely limiting and makes it not the most enjoyable game in the world. Up until this morning I wasn't go to replay it, but I might now I've finally (at assignment 10 of 12) worked out thanks to the internet how to craft new weapons and defence clothing! It makes it heaps easier! 
I only persevered at the start because Rorona is adorable, and a character in later games.
However, later this week I'm getting a new console! I'm not saying which just yet, that'll be revealed (& hinted at) in a few days. ^u^ It feels like I've been breathing research about the console all week, which was needed to figure out which edition to get, but I made up my mind last night. So excited!

After pre-scheduling some book reviews this morning, it's almost lunch time! Time for anime after, then easy gaming & crochet. Hope you've all had a great weekend!