Jewelry Quest: China Edition

I have to admit that I am in love with shopping. I can spend hours just looking at clothes, makeup, books and craft supplies. I’m also pretty selective, so it takes me forever to decide what I want. Enter online marketplaces. I have been a shopper on Etsy and Ebay for years now, with no regrets. I love being able to search for what I want, and take breaks or save the page for later if I’m not sure. It’s just fantastic!

This brings me to my next issue. I used to avoid China like the plague, until I worked at a very popular retail store. I realized that every piece of jewelry we sold had tiny words on the back of the package, reading ‘made in China’. I started going to other popular stores as well; all from China. I’ve actually started notice the same products (or nearly the same) sold on Ebay for pennies. Here’s a great example:

Guess the Price! There are 2 necklaces. One is $5.00 and the other is 14.50…Click to find out.

ImageImageSo how did you do? It’s really a 50/50 chance unless you cheated. So, some of the items may have minor differences, but are more than likely made in the same factory. I’d rather save my money and just buy online. It might take 2-4 weeks to get to me, but that’s a price I’m willing to pay.

As a side note, as an Etsy seller and shopper, I do buy (as well as make) unique handcrafted jewelry. Nothing compares¬† to the craftsmanship and heart that goes into each piece. But sometimes, I just need that cute 2 dollar chunky necklace…and I’m not ashamed of that.

And without further ado, here is a pair of earrings I bought for 2 dollars from China (just got them in today).

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You can get these cuties here: http://www.ebay.ca/itm/281183002330?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649

Mason Jar Snowmen

ImageSo, I’ve been pinning a lot of seasonal crafts lately, and have been seeing a LOT of mason jar crafts. Everything from candle holders to planters. They are very multi-purpose. I decided to try my hand at making some snow man luminaries.

What you’ll need:

  • acrylic paint (white, black, orange)
  • mason jar
  • different sizes of paint brushes (you may choose to use a sponge brush to paint the base coat).

How to create:

  • coat your mason jar completely with white acrylic paint, and let dry (I let mine sit for an hour)
  • apply a second coat of white acrylic paint and let dry
  • decide where you want the eyes, nose and mouth. It might be helpful to practice drawing it on a piece of paper until you decide what style you want them to be.
  • use a finer brush to carefully paint the eyes, nose and mouth, and let dry
  • add finer detail and outline any features (I added detail to the carrot nose)
  • paint the lid black, as a hat
  • You can also add fabric (like a scarf), buttons for the eyes and mouth, and you can really play around with it to make it your own
  • as a safety precaution, I decided to use flickering LED lights

The Lazy Chef: Bruschetta Chicken Pasta for One

Here’s a recipe I came up with because I wanted to add more vegetables into my diet. It’s super simple and tasty! I’m cooking for only myself. But you can double the ingredients for more servings. You can also use frozen vegetables if you want to save time.

This recipe was intended to feed 1 person, but can easily feed 2 people with smaller plates. The whole recipe is approximately 300 calories (weighed all my ingredients and calculated).

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 chopped onions
  • 2 medium sized mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup sliced carrots
  • 50g of pre-cooked chicken strips (I weigh mine, but you can eyeball it and add as much or little chicken as you want)
  • 2 tbsp bruschetta in a jar
  • 1/2 cup rotini pasta (I used whole wheat)
  • 1 tsp of olive oil
  1.  Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Once water is boiling, add rotini and carrots.
  2. In a frying pan, add a small amount of olive oil and saute onions and mushrooms.
  3. Once pasta and carrots are tender, strain them and add to the onions and mushrooms
  4. Throw in the pre-cooked chicken strips and the 2 tablespoonfuls of bruschetta. (if the chicken strips are frozen or cold, keep the stove on low and cook for a few minutes until warmed).
  5. Enjoy!

So, this is my first recipe that I’ve written, so if you have any questions or if something is unclear, please feel free to respond to this post!

Here are the products I used:

Lazy Chef Recipes

Throughout my blog, you’ll soon see some recipes and food ideas. I’ll be calling the series ‘The Lazy Chef’. Keep your eyes peeled!

I also wanted to get one thing straight: I am NO chef. Or at least not a real one. I’m sure if any master chefs saw this, I would not live up to their standards of fine dining presentation and cooking methods. My goal is not to impress the food snobs. It’s hard to eat well on a tight budget, and it’s easy to just grab a box of mac ‘n’ cheese or canned pasta. After years of eating ramen noodles, I’ve decided that this just isn’t working anymore. I’m sick of the same old thing. Only, there’s a problem. I’m LAZY. I have come up with some easy recipes over the last year and a half. Ones that I haven’t shared. I’ve been too ashamed of how I cook. It’s incredibly lazy, too. It’s also incredibly tasty and cost-efficient.

 

Welcome to The Pudgy Owl

Hello, and welcome to The Pudgy Owl! This is a new idea for me, to just blog about…whatever. It’ll be a fun challenge and adventure for me…and I hope you’ll join me too! I’ve been in a bit of a rut, and in need of a personal project that takes more than minimal effort. I need a challenge, but something rewarding that can be shared with others too! I plan on sharing with you my personal style, products that I find hilarious and/or interesting, neat tid-bits from around the internet, my amateur (but nice) photography, rants about issues, good foods, lots of cats, and a little about Etsy (I’m a seller and shopper…and I can sniff out great deals).