Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

A happiness lesson from the movie Ground Hog Day.

Iceland figured out to solve the problem of teenagers drinking and doing drugs, and it’s amazing.

Deep winter can often feel pretty blah- how about getting some awesome low-maintenance house plants to beautify and add serenity to your home?

Practicing mindfulness in a loud world.

My Favourite Pins This Week

How pretty are these marbled sugar cookies?! I love the effect, its achieved by tinting half the dough with some food colouring (or beet juice, if you want to be totally all natural) and rolling them in to balls before mashing them all together. Such a clever idea, and the recipe is super easy! Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

I’m not normally a big fan of pasta bakes, because it usually involves making an entire pasta meal and THEN baking it in the oven with more ingredients….. that’s cooking the same dish twice, in my opinion. But sometimes, you want a comforting cheesy dinner that hits all the right spots. And that, my friends, is worth the extra effort. A delicious weekend dinner! Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

I used to eat breakfast every morning. Those were wonderful, child-free days. Now if I get a smoothie organized it’s the closest I get! This coffee protein smoothie is fast and delicious, and the trick of freezing the coffee in ice cubes means you don’t even have to actually make the coffee in the morning. I do have a confession, though- try as I might, I dislike chia seeds and hemp seeds. I know its’ the food trend to sprinkle tiny, stick-in-your-teeth seeds on everything, but I just can’t do it. I can report this smoothie is very delicious without seeds. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe is here.

If you have wanted to try dying yarn but every time you read a tutorial it seems like a load of work, then this is the tutorial for you! A simplified approach that minimizes mess and is totally achievable in a tiny kitchen. Pinterest link is here, and the original DIY post is here.

If you want to up your productivity, this is one of the best lists I’ve read recently with tips on how to improve. I’d skip ahead to start reading from point 10 onward, since the beginning seems like the usual well-worn terrain of productivity advice, but the stuff after that I pure gold. My favourites are… I can’t even pick a handful of favourites, there are that many great tips to work through.  Pinterest link is here, and the original post is here.


  1. Kelly J. R.   •  

    We have a super-easy baked pasta dish on regular rotation. It’s called “Sausage & Peppers Baked Ziti” from Eating Well magazine. You can find it online if you’re interested. You don’t even have to chop any veggies. 🙂

    • Julie   •     Author

      OOoh, I looked up the recipe and it does look easy! Thanks so much for the suggestion. I would probably still end up chopping some veggies into it- I’m very big on adding veg to dishes wherever I can. 🙂

  2. Tanis   •  

    I have never met a low-maintenance houseplant that I couldn’t speedily kill. But I’ll never give up trying! I so wish I had a green thumb! Oh, and those are the prettiest cookies. I’ll be making those for sure.

    • Julie   •     Author

      I find that hilarious considering how much light your house has! Peace lilies are pretty hardy, and I have a snake plant that actually needs hardly any light, so it’s a good bathroom or bedroom plant. The other thing about snake plants is that they are vertical but not bushy- so they don’t suck up a lit of space in a room.

  3. Jessica Lane   •  

    Really interesting article about Iceland. I find that as my daughter gets older, I’m starting to research what works to avoid those kinds of problems. I’ll take all the advice I can get, it’s a scary time!

    • Julie   •     Author

      Hi Jessica,

      I feel the same way! That Iceland article was so interesting to me, and I had a lot of extracurricular activities in high school, I didn’t have time to get into trouble. There’s definitely some good takeaways here!



  4. Stefanie   •  

    So true about pasta casseroles. Everything is cooked and then thrown together and then cooked again, LOL. I do like the look of those marbled hearts. Yummy!

    • Julie   •     Author

      I keep thinking I need to do some valentines banking with Lila this weekend- gotta make it happen!



  5. Ellen   •  

    Ooo, love the productivity article! I’m going to spend some time reading through it for sure. Lots of good ideas to implement. Thanks for sharing!

    • Julie   •     Author

      Hi Ellen,

      I am a total sucker for productivity links, but that one is one of the better round ups I’ve come across- so many small but actionable items! I”m working my way through them. 🙂



  6. Brenda   •  

    That productivity list is pretty good. Might have to plan to revisit that one. And that breakfast smoothie reminds me that I used to do the breakfast smoothie thing, but I’ve gotten out of the habit. I should really get back into it.

    • Julie   •     Author

      Hi Brenda,

      I find it harder to do the breakfast smoothie thing in the winter, when drinking something cold feels a little counter-intuitive, but it’s about a billion times easier for me than sitting down with a plate of something!



  7. Loulou   •  

    What Iceland has been able to accomplish is so great, including figuring out why kids get into drugs and drinking in the first place.

    I hear you about pasta bakes, but a nice things about them (aside from their absolute deliciousness!) is you can assemble more than one at a time and freeze it. Then you get a ‘free’ dinner in the future, work wise! We do that with lasagne, and, while it takes a bit more time and what seems like a sh*t load of ingredients when you’re making it, it’s pretty sweet just having it ready when you want it later on. Of course, that means having space in the freezer though!

    Love the yarn dying tutorial, and those cookies are really cute. All in all, a post filled with good things!

    • Julie   •     Author

      Hi Loulou,

      So true- pasta bakes are totally worth the effort, and so smart about freezing one for a ready made meal in the future. Great tip!



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