Monthly Archives: October 2022

4 Books and Movies for Adventurous Homebodies

I know adventurous homebody is a paradox, but there are those of us indoor people who like a good adventure every once in a while. I like to go hiking, though my longest hike has only been about 6 hours round trip. Camping is great too, especially with good friends and a nice fire going. When it’s wet and chilly outside, as it is most of this season in Vancouver, and I can’t muster up the energy to pull on my rain boots and venture out, I like to read and watch other people doing crazy things like mountaineering and be glad I’m at home with dry feet.

  1. Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer (1997)
A group of climbers climbing up a steep icy slope on Mount Everest on a sunny day
Image credit: Mountain Madness

Right now I’m about halfway through this book, and I already know I will never ever attempt to climb Mount Everest- not that I was ever going to, but I’m definitely not going to now. Krakauer tells the story of when he joined an Everest expedition guided by Rob Hall that ended in a severe storm, killing four on Krakauer’s team, including Hall. Krakauer is an accomplished climber and author of Into the Wild, so his wonderful writing paired with vivid descriptions of the climb and explanations of everything that’s involved in a successful expedition make for an immersive book.

“Everest has always been a magnet for kooks, publicity seekers, hopeless romantics, and others with a shaky hold on reality.”

-Jon Krakauer (p. 114)

Krakauer also touches on the dangers that Sherpas undertake to support Westerners’ expeditions, and raises the question of whether climbing Mount Everest on commercial expeditions is harmful to the region. Sherpas often don’t get the same amount of recognition as foreign climbers, but they do all the same climbing and then some. In July 2022 Sanu Sherpa, a Nepali climber, completed all 14 highest peaks for the second time, the only person to have done them all twice. Lhakpa Sherpa, 48, became the first woman to climb to the summit of Mount Everest 10 times. Kami Rita, a Sherpa Everest guide, has summited Everest 26 times and holds the world record for most summits.

I’ve been reading chapters here and there at breakfast and on my commute, and it definitely puts the small worries of the day into perspective.

2. 14 Peaks : Nothing is Impossible (2021)

Nims and three team members in snowsuits holding up the Project Possible flag

Nirmal Purja, or Nims, and his team of Sherpas, including Mingma David Sherpa, Geljen Sherpa, Gesman Tamang, and Lakpa Dendi, climbed all 14 of the world’s 8,000 metre peaks in six months and six days. To put this project in perspective, the first climber to summit all 8,000 metre peaks, Reinhold Messner, took 16 years to accomplish his feat. The previous time record for the 14 peak project was over 7 years, by Kim Chang-ho. This is a massively respected project no matter the time it takes. Nims is memorable for his strong personal character and cheerful but fiercely focused outlook.

3. Journey to the Centre of the Earth by Jules Verne (1864)

An inactive volcano in Iceland
Image credit: Iceland Mag

I’m a big fan of Jules Verne’s writing, and this is maybe my favourite of his books. A geologist and his nephew decide to travel into the centre of the planet after finding an account of a 16th century explorer, who claimed to have found a route to the Earth’s core. The pair enter the route through Snæfellsjökull, an inactive volcano in Iceland. The book is pure science fiction, but Verne’s science-y reasoning and well-developed characters make it feel almost biographical.

4. The River Runner (2021)

Scott Lindgren with a kayak on his back standing on a rock at the bank of a huge river with a strong current
Image credit: Paddling Life

In The River Runner Scott Lindgren kayaks through the four rivers flowing from Mount Kailash in Tibet, attempting to be the first person to complete all four. Lindgren talks about his experience with mental health, finding out he has a brain tumour, and learning to be vulnerable.

In this documentary Lindgren explores the mental side of extreme sports- many people in these kinds of fields have to be incredibly focused and strong to deal with the dangers and losses that are inherent to things like mountaineering or extreme kayaking. That mentality is useful in threatening situations, but it needs to be balanced with vulnerability and support.

Coraline Cookies

I watched Coraline the other night while I was knitting. I’ve found recently that enjoying movies and music from my childhood helps with stress from adult-related things like school and work. Coraline, though absolutely and completely terrifying, is nostalgic for me. Then I remembered I saved a recipe on Pinterest for button cookies inspired by Coraline’s ‘other mother’, and my mum has been asking me for cookies for the past week, so there we go.

Image credit: Coraline (2009)

The original recipe by Bakerella calls for peanut butter cookies. I like peanut butter, but my favourites are chocolate cookies. I found a recipe for chocolate dough from Cafe Delites, which I realized may have been a mistake- they taste wonderful, but the chocolate chips weakened the structure of the already-tiny cookies, and made them a little cracked around the edges. Oh well, I prefer taste over looks anyway.

Unbaked chocolate cookie dough rolled into small balls on a baking sheet

Make sure you use a bottle cap to test the size of the dough balls, so they don’t become ginormous buttons. I used, as directed by Bakerella, a bottle cap (make sure it’s plastic, not metal, so you don’t burn off your fingertips) to make a circular indent in the middle of the buttons and then used a skewer to poke four holes in the middle to make the button shape.

I realize they look like little poops before they’re baked. But they taste good, promise. They’re perfect alongside black tea or coffee if you, like me, need something strong and slightly bitter to offset sweet things.


Coraline Cookies by Bakerella

Best Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Cookies by Cafe Delites

Ways to Shop Sustainably

There are a variety of different ways that you can shop sustainably. Making some changes to your shopping habits are an easy way to reduce our carbon footprint and protect the planet’s natural resources.  Here are some ways to sustainably shop for your clothes and build a sustainable wardrobe.  Buy from sustainable brands. Choose ethical […]

WeeK 5: Goal 3 – Meditating 10 mins Every day (Oct 17 – 23)

Goal 3: Meditating 10 Mins Everyday

October 17 - 23


This week I challenged myself to meditate for 10 minutes daily consistently. This summer, I read a book called Mindfulness in Plain English By Bhante Gunaratana, which motivated me to get more into meditation. So throughout the summer, I meditated fairly consistently and saw some positive changes in my mental health. However, I did not meditate every day, so I am really excited to see if it would have an even more positive effect on my mental health if I do it more consistently. Before I dive into my experience, I would like to highlight some of the perceived benefits of meditation, according to 


Some of the Benefits of Meditation


1. Reducing stress. 


2. Reduced Anxiety. 


3. Improve mood.


4. Enhance self-awareness 


5. Improve your attention span 


6. Focused-attention 


6. Improve memory 


7. Can generate kindness


8. Improve sleep


10. Helps control pain


11. Decreased blood pressure

Experience & Effects

I am happy to say I successfully completed this challenge this week. I found that the best time to meditate was just after I got home from work or school. I felt like it helped me decompress after a long day, and I saw an improvement in my general stress levels throughout the week too. I also felt like it was easier to focus on my schoolwork. Typically, when I come home from school or work, I binge on social media, and then I find it hard to start doing any other work I have to do for the night. However, starting my homework became more manageable when I switched to meditation.  


Here is One of My Favourite Meditation Videos


Thorpe, M. (2020, October 27). 12 Science-Based Benefits of Meditation. Healthline. 

Gunaratana, B. (1991) Mindfulness in Plain English. Wisdom Publications

Designing and De-stressing

I’ve been following @motherofpurl on Instagram for a few years now, since before I began to knit. They recently put up a new website, and I really like the design. Lauren from Mother of Purl designs patterns, sells art yarn and wool rovings, and holds classes on fibre art. Their website is designed to be a business, and you can see the appeal of their creations right on the home page with curated photos of their collections and hand-dyed or spun fibre.

My favourite part of the website is probably Lauren’s thorough About section. They include their values and a bit of their history and experience with knitting, and the features available through Mother of Purl. I admire the layout as well, they continue to use a few main colours- pale olive, burgundy, and light green- throughout the website and this section, so even though the format of each page is different there is a good flow. Their logo has the same colours, and it cleverly represents the title of the website- a clam shell with a ball of yarn as its pearl.

I like to follow experienced knitters and fibre artists, because I think knitting is one of the many crafts that is passed down through generations, and still retains techniques from many years ago. It’s a unique craft in the amount of time that it takes and its artistic practicality. Lauren, and many knitters, have built their business and art from fibre, and it is good to see that this slow craft can sustain people even in fast-moving times.

I finally feel like the design of this website is coming along, so I’ve been more relaxed. I got some good marks back on assignments from a couple of classes that I was nervous about. I know academic validation can be an unhealthy thing to base confidence on, but it still feels uplifting to get good feedback.

This weekend I’ve been trying to think about my health a little more. Since starting school I’ve succumbed to the daily routine of: wake up late, drink loads of coffee, grab snacks whenever I can, study for hours without much moving around, and go to sleep when it’s already tomorrow. Over the past few days I caught up on doctor’s appointments, cleaned, went running, cooked lunch, and spent more time giving myself breaks. I didn’t do anything about my sleeping schedule- I’m convinced it’s a lost cause. I know every weekend won’t give me the chance to do all of this, but it helped to take a breather.

Week 4: I failed (October 10 – 16)

Week 4: I Failed

October 11 - 17

  • This week, my goal was to meditate for 10 minutes or more daily. 
  • However, I ultimately failed this week’s challenge as it was mid-term season, and I was super busy at work. 
  • I tried to meditate in the morning but did not have enough time. Then I tried to meditate in the nighttime but always forgot about it because I was so tired.
  •  So I paid my friend $3 and decided that I would try to find another time in my schedule that is better for me to meditate for next week.

Process post #4 (Imaginary Audience!)

Imagining who my audience is for this website, I have to go back to when I first decided on the topic of my blog. It seemed like deciding what i want to write on my blog was easy. However, even after a day or two, there was yet to be a topic I was sure of. Then suddenly, I saw my perfumes unexpectedly and asked myself a question. Do I love perfume? Do I know perfumes well enough to recommend them to others? The answer was yes! There was nothing to hesitate about when the topic was decided.

As it is a blog that explains and recommends perfume, I wanted the blog design to be as minimalistic and white as possible. Why does white come to mind when you think of perfume? If you ask me, I have no choice but to say “just because”.. perfume is like clean white paper to me. Perfume is colourless like white paper; It is colourless and unnoticeable, but perfume leaves a strong impression on people and sometimes makes them reminiscent. Just as a dot on the blank paper changes the mood of the drawing paper, so does the perfume. The smell and atmosphere vary widely depending on what you draw on the clean white paper. People like me who are interested in fragrances and love perfumes will understand why white comes to mind when they think of perfumes.

The readers of my blog are people who are interested in perfumes like me. I tried to express the noble feeling of perfume through the impression of a blog that looked as concise and clean as possible. To talk about the content, there are two main things that people who are interested in perfume want to look for. A realistic review of the perfume they are curious about and a perfume recommendation. I tried to satisfy two things that perfume lovers would be most curious about.

To be honest, I’m very picky and sensitive when it comes to perfumes. The scents that most of the public loves are often just such perfumes for me. I like less well-known, unique and neutral scents that others don’t use much rather than scents that the public will prefer. My writings would be quite interesting for readers who really love perfumes and spend time looking at perfume reviews. My reviews will also be welcome for those who are tired of non-realistic perfume views that include ads. The readers I’ve imagined so far are people like me who love perfumes, are tired of dishonest perfume views, and are looking for unique perfumes as well as recommendations!

Goal 2 – Taking My Vitamins Every Day (October 3 – 9)

Taking My Vitamins Every Day

September 26 - October 2


This week I challenged myself to take all my vitamins and supplements consistently. I am taking Iron, Calcium & Magnesium +D3, Zinc, Omega-3, and Vitamin B-12. The reason I take so many supplements is that I am a vegetarian (who rarely consumes dairy or eggs), and I have also been diagnosed with iron deficient anemia. 


Iron Deficient Anemia

According to Medical New Today, Iron deficiency anemia can cause fatigue, heart palpitations, pale skin, and breathlessness. So this is the reason why I take Iron supplements. However, you should not take Iron supplements if they are not Iron deficient.


A white supplement container with a few tan pills spilling out.

Challenges of a Vegan Diet 

Vegans or people who don’t consume animal products regularly like tend to be deficient in Vitamin B 12, Calcium, Iron, and Iodine. According to Medical News Today, a diet deficient in vitamin B12 can cause fatigue, lethargy, light-headedness, heart palpitations, weight loss and a host of other health complications. Additionally, they discuss how a diet deficient in calcium increases the risk for osteoporosis, bone fracture and heart failure. I am at little risk for Iodine deficiency because I use iodized salt in all my cooking. Omega 3 fatty acids are another substance that vegans are likely to be deficient in. Omega 3 fatty acids may reduce inflammation, decrease blood triglycerides, and even reduce the risk of dementia. So those are the other reasons I take so many different vitamins/supplements daily. 


However, I must make a disclaimer and say that many of these vitamins can be found naturally in foods, and many vegans/vegetarians do not need to take as many vitamins as me. I am just a super busy broke college student, so taking supplements is much more convenient. 

How did it go?

Well, to put it short, I failed. I took the majority of my pills, but I wasn’t able to take all of them every day. I have a pill box that I use to help me remember what vitamins I need to take. However, throughout the day, I tend to leave my house a lot as I go to work, school, etc. So sometimes, my pill box would be at home, and by the time I got home in the evening, I didn’t have much time to take all the pills I needed. 



Though I failed this challenge, I was a lot more consistent than I usually am with taking my vitamins. Therefore I did notice a few positive effects on my general health and well-being. I felt slightly more energetic, and I also felt like my head didn’t hurt as much as it usually does too.  


Strategies for the Future

  1. Set an alarm on my phone to remind me about my pills,
  2. Take a few of them with me in my backpack, so I can take them throughout the day 
  3. Get a drinkable version of some of these vitamins so I can just put them in my water bottle and drink them throughout the day.   


Ware, M. (2018, February 23). Iron: Recommended intake, benefits, and foods sources.

Kirkpatrick, K. (2021, August 6). Vegan and Omega-3 Deficiency: EPA is Easy, DHA is Hard – Gene Food.

Robertson, S. (2019, May 2). Vegans are often deficient in these four nutrients. Medical Life Science News.

Link, R. (2021, December 22). The Best Plant Source of Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Healthline.

Why Care About Sustainable Fashion?

With humans now consuming 400% more clothing than we were 20 years ago, we are buying more clothes than ever, yet wearing them a lot less. A lot of this can be explained by the growth of fast fashion in the past two decades. However, the over-consumption of cheaply-made clothing has led to a massive […]

Mini Assignment #2

Hey guys, this is your friendly neighbourhood Spiderman coming to you from Dressing Sustainably! I’m writing this guest post to inform you all about the advantages of creating your own clothing. During my days fighting crime in New York City, way before I was recruited for the Avengers, I would design and sew my own […]