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Meet the new baby Pelham :-)

Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-)And finally I have got a moment to introduce to you our new baby Pelham, Tomas. It has been hectic couple of weeks! Not only that I had to get used to looking after two kids but also Lukas got sickness bug last week (bad timing for sure). I been screaming "help" through the roof. And I did receive some help, so thank you for all those who gave advice and came round our house just to hold Tomas so I can do some laundry. Sleepless nights are still on, but strangely I feel fine although a bit depressed sometimes when I count the hours of sleep (better not). Hopefully will come out of the fog very soon and share more stories and stuff here like before.

But less about me, more about Tomas. It is his introduction after all. I am very impressed with the pics I took of him and Lukas, although it was quite a challenge to coordinate them. These are taken when Tomas was just two weeks old (today he is four weeks old and one month at the same time thanks to February being a short month). Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-)So I been asked a lot of questions about the birth of Tomas and how Lukas is reacting to his new baby brother. Well, I thought I will quickly answer them here.

The birth of Tomas was a quick one, 8 hours in total. 4 hours of hormone drip sadly (I just could not say no to it). He was a big boy, weighing 4.84kg and before you squint let me tell you that it was ok and did not cause any trouble. Lukas was born even bigger (5.34kg), so I guess I have been made to make big babies ;-).

Lukas seem to be interested in Tomas, sometimes strokes him not in the most gentle way. He also gets upset when he hears him cry, but not all the time. So I guess all normal.Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-) Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-) Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-) Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-) Meet our newest son, Tomas Pelham ;-)Thanks for letting me share and I hope to do it more often (if time allows)

Rasa xx


My New Year goals + free printable 2017 planner

printable 2017 planner/calendarAfter reflecting on 2016 I decided to make 2017 goals a bit differently this time. I made only one main goal this year which is to organise our family life. Let's be honest, I don't exactly expect to achieve 5-7 goals when we have so much on this year. Even one goal is big enough for me considering we have a little one coming up very soon! So I did count in three months of "cloud phase" (no firm schedule period)  after new baby is born.

When it comes to organising I find planner or basic calendar is essential. I did not find a good one to buy so I ended making one myself. Because I wanted lots of space for scheduling I decided to make the calendar weekly. I also included goals page with the to do lists, because I realised that some plans cannot be scheduled even if it is beneficial to schedule. We all know that things change so quickly and you end up just cancelling and scheduling. This is why I made the goal page which can be attached to each week! So all to-dos are planned in the specific week, but not specific time or day. Fingers crossed that works!   printable 2017 planner/calendar printable 2017 planner/calendar

Click here to upload your 2017 planner.

You can either print the page for one week as it comes and attach it on the wall or fridge. Or like me you can print all of it and tie it with the string so it can be hung as a one piece. printable 2017 planner/calendar printable 2017 planner/calendar printable 2017 planner/calendarHappy organised 2017 to you all xx

Rasa :)


My reflections on 2016

My reflections on 2016Can you believe it? Tomorrow we are entering 2017! (I personally feel its going to be the best year ever).

But for now I would like to reflect on 2016. I must admit it was't the easiest year, but I guess you need those type as well sometimes ;-). Don't get me wrong, there were plenty of good times such as finding out we are expecting a new baby and having own house to DIY. But if you look from the other side (more negative one) it has been very challenging. The house has been chaotic while I am gradually getting less and less energetic due to pregnancy. Having no basic bathroom for few weeks has been very hard to cope with. We went on holidays of course, but then I realised its not the same anymore when we have a baby on board. But then again, it has been a learning processMy reflections on 2016 When reviewing my 2016 resolutions I realised that they were a little ambitious. But how do you know whats in store in the future? Things happen completely differently to what you expect sometimes!

1. I was planning to upgrade Friendly Nettle website, but who was I kidding? I was lucky to find some time to blog. Instead I was busy with Lukas helping him to discover food, playing and singing. My reflections on 2016 2. I hoped to turn our house into home, but instead we got a chaos. Few projects in one go and doing almost everything by ourselves has never been a good idea. Well at least we got few rooms almost finished such as Lukas bedroom :). My reflections on 2016 3. I wanted to learn to take better pictures and thankfully I did have some luck with it! I used up a lot of Lukas nap times practicing with the camera which has been very useful. Now when I take pictures I often apply the tricks I learned. My reflections on 2016 4. I hoped to teach Lukas to swim, but yet again I failed here. Have you ever tried to go swimming pool alone when you need to get the baby and yourself dressed in a tiny dressing room? After many tries I realised we missed the window when swimming should come natural to the babies. Lukas is a toddler now! My reflections on 2016 5. We said we would grow cucumbers as a joke, clearly this is not the most important goal :D. However, this was successful, look at those funny shape cucumbers!My reflections on 2016So of course I am looking forward to tomorrow (as I am certainly not staying up till midnight tonight), 2017 I am ready :).

Rasa xoxo


Photography challenge: white balance in pregnancy announcement photos :)

importance of white balance I have been wanting to announce our news for quite a while now but we have had few challenging weeks which is why I did not find any good time to sit down and blog (and I must admit I am not the most creative on making such announcements anyways). So the announcement is....Lukas is going to have a brother!!!! :). Yey! And he is due in February, so kind of very very soon!

After our holiday in Center Parcs we were ill, started bathroom renovations, Lukas got sick while we were stuck with only one sink in the house and no bath tub. Thankfully things got better and I also found some time to perfect my photography skills! There was definitely a breakthrough when I learned about the white balance, because I had so many frustrations in the past when the camera just selects the temperature of the pic automatically. I spend hours (if not weeks if you put all the time together that I wasted) correcting the colouring of pics on Photoshop, when I could be taking perfect pictures on my camera!

So, what is this fuss about the white balance in photography? White balance is essentially a colour balance in the picture. You see, light has colour (or a temperature if you prefer) and anything to do with light transfers into pictures as well. Have you ever noticed some pictures come out blueish/greyish and some yellowish/reddish? You can often notice if the pic was taken in cloudy morning or sunny afternoon. Of course that can be corrected (thank goodness!!!) and often camera does in automatically. However it does not come out correctly all the time (you will see here). Sometimes its good to know you can change the settings.

I found my white balance settings are right there under one button (so that is quite convenient). You can select exact number for the temperature but I just decided to try out preset options. These include daylight, shade, cloudy, Tungsten light (good for indoor lighting) and different Fluorescent lights. I decided to try them all out on one sunny day in the shade.

The picture above and bellow have been taken with auto WB mode. Pretty good, right? I have not edited them or used any filter.importance of white balanceIn the picture bellow I have used shade mode. It looks much warmer then the auto mode which I prefer.importance of white balanceFrom all the pictures I have taken I think auto mode looked most similar to cloudy mode. Interesting!importance of white balanceHere I tried different scenario, I was taking some pics of Lukas in auto mode.importance of white balance And here is in shade mode (pic bellow) that I thought is too yellow.importance of white balance I think camera did a good job selecting the colour balance that is close to the pic bellow that have been taken in daylight mode. importance of white balance And here is for fun. I have taken a pic in Tungsten light mode. Its amazing how much blue you need to balance out an indoor lighting!importance of white balance To check it out how would Tungsten light mode work I took few pics indoors in the evening with our room lighting. I usually avoid doing this because you get a very yellowy look. I took this first pic in auto mode.importance of white balance And here it is with Tungsten light mode. Not bad! Maybe I should start taking pictures in the evenings to save time (only joking!).importance of white balanceHope you found this inspiring!

Rasa xx


My reflections on 2015

Look who is swimming already :-)It's almost 2016 and I am very excited to share my reflections on 2015 ;-). What a year it has been! In the beginning of 2015 I have created 7 new year resolutions that most have been achieved and on top of it some dreams came through that I did not imagine it would happen so soon. 

Two major things have happened this year: we now are a family of three (Yes, Lukas is our new addition!) and we bought our first family house. Ok, we hoped for both to happen, but we were not sure if it would happen so we are really really happy that it did. We just need to fix that house and it will be totally great(something for the next year)!Our dream house!We also had an opportunity to visit Iceland which was my dream for many years. It exceeded my expectations!Me and Blue LagoonNow, back to 2015 resolutions...

1. I hoped to upgrade Friendly Nettle website. I will be honest I fail on this! I have not changed one bit about the website or learned coding. Sadly just did not find the time (hopefully in 2016 I will be able to achieve it). On the positive note I did manage to successfully run a crafty group here in Bedford!  Live in Bedford? Then join us here ;-).Craft group leaflets

2. I am really pleased to say that I did create amazing new products and bakes for a new website this year! I just need to keep it coming somehow... Here it is!Friendly Nettle Bakery 3. Updating budgets comes naturally to me. I mentioned already I really like keeping our finances organised. All I need to do now is to update it again as our needs keep changing all the time (we now need to save for house upgrades and Lukas future). Here are my 5 steps to basic budgeting if this is something you are struggling with.Budgeting4. I totally nailed it and read more books this year! In fact this goal was the most enjoyable :-). In the beginning of this year I preselected 6 books to read and guess what, I finished reading all of them!A year with books, 20155. When it comes to taking better pics, I did not do much about it! I did not even manage to read the manual of my camera :(.My reflections on 20156. In the beginning of this year I did eat healthier and I think I would have carried that on if I did not become pregnant. The fact that it almost did not matter how much weight I would gain loosened up my standards a bit (if you know what I mean!).My reflections on 20157.  Swimming is what became my fun sport (it was practically the only sport I could do)! Now I am onto teaching Lukas how to swim ;-).My reflections on 2015Now when I had some time to reflect on 2015 I can welcome 2016 :-)

Rasa xoxo


October favourites

Autumn posterI have been a bit silent in October. That's because we were patiently waiting for our baby to come!

Now when the wait is over, let me introduce you to our son Lukas Futvoye Pelham :). We are so happy (and a little bit tired of course)!! Lukas Futvoye Pelham pregnancy weeksLukas turned out to be a big boy. To our surprise he weighed 5.34kg (11lb 12.5oz)!!! No wonder he did not fit the hat and socks I knitted for him. Anyone fancy these? Let me know and I will send it to you instead of giving them to the charity ;-). knitted baby hat and socks, too small :(In terms of house renovations we decided to sort our bedroom out first. Our friend from church is finishing painting it as we speak.Our bedroom to be in progressIt would all be good, but we came across some nicotine stains which are harder to disguise than you think! So far we tried few white paint coats and a stain block (we have high hopes for it!!). Hopefully this is the end to this problem.nicotine stains :(Happy Autumn!

Rasa xoxo


September favourites

Friendly Nettle calendar in my kitchenWhat? October already? Well... September went very fast! It has been a very busy month.

First thing I want to say is that we have finally moved to our new house with our cat Leia! Not forgetting my kitchen wall calendar (So I can feel more organised). I also started making some decisions on wall colour and carpet. Our DIY journey may not start straight away, but I do not see any harm in getting ready for it ;-).Textured ceiling wallpaper Choosing carpetSecondary, I celebrated my 33rd birthday this month. Loved this year's cake that Joni made (chocolatey banoffee pie with the twist).My birthday cake!And finally, we are busy getting ready for our baby! My sister have organised the most amazing baby shower and I wish I took my photo camera there because the set up looked very pretty (especially the cake that have been decorated with pansies). I now have plenty of nappies for the months to come  with the cute little notes ;-).Baby shower gamesHurray to October!

Rasa xoxo


Our new house tour

Our new house tourI am happy to announce that we have finally bought a house here in Shortstown (sounds a bit American, but be reassured this little town is in England very close to Bedford).  Me and Joni fell in love with the architecture and location of it as soon as we saw it advertised. It was love from first sight! Yes, it needs loads of work, but we thing it has a great potential. The house is very large and spacious with a good size garden. It kind of makes me feel like I am about to live in councillor's house because of it's large windows and arched front porch.Our new house tour: front room aka studySo watch this space for lots of interior DIY's, because this time I am recording everything! It will of course won't happen overnight, but we are hoping to at least decorate master bedroom very soon. The other parts of the house might take a while because of new baby joining us soon :-).Our new house tour: dining roomOne of our plans are to build a conservatory into the garden as well as extending this very small kitchen (pic bellow).Our new house tour: tiny kitchenThis is where our sitting room with fireplace be (pic bellow).Our new house tour: sitting roomThis bathroom need complete transformation as you can see.Our new house tour: the corridor and the bathroomNursery is coming to place sometime early next year.Our new house tour: baby nursery to beThis is the master bedroom I was mentioning. It has a very cute walk through wardrobe to the bedroom no 2. We shall keep it for few years till we need more space and need to extend the stairs into the loft.Our new house tour: Master bedroom and walk-through wardobeAnd this is bedroom no 2. Guess what we are planning to do with it! It has a very funny surprise: random shower cubical! Will be removing it soon.Our new house tour: Bedroom 2 with the surprise!Thanks for letting me share!

Rasa xoxo


A colour story for our new home

Creating colour storyI want something exciting to say. We have finally exchanged with our house purchase last week! Anybody who bought the house before know what it means: we will have this house for sure and the date is set when we could move in. Yey!

Ever since we exchanged I have been dreaming how we are going to decorate the house and what alterations we are going to make. I have done this before and it was difficult and long process. But now I am not alone so hopefully we will settle much quicker, although we have baby on the way so I am interested to see how difficult it will be to do at least some DIY.

I have started planning the colours. Why? Because I really really want everything to "flow" in the house and right now I already need to buy few things that will match (such as sofa bed for my mum to sleep in when she is visiting her grandchild). I must admit last time I was decorating the house I did not put so much effort in planning the colour... because I went an easy way and chose neutral colours (mostly white). Yes, I did get many comments that it looked like a hospital to begin with, although I accessorised it with bold colours so it was cute at the end). This time I want to be braver and try darker colours (gosh, I am sooooo scared that it may make the place look small). But I so love those eccentric rooms that I see on Pinterest, so the challenge is on!

So how did I create this colour story? I am very lucky that I have gone to Uni to do fashion. During my course one of the things I have learned is exactly that, creating a colour story for a collection. It is of course very different to creating a colour story for the house, but the goal is the same: to create a set of colours that will be used through out the project (in this case the whole house). Of course I had failed many times before. One instance I remember quite clearly when my colour story looked like a rainbow just because I liked many colours and because I arranged them in colour wheel order. Another thing I learned is to identify what colours are main and which ones are for the accents. For better visualisation arrange the accent colours in small amounts that could be displayed in a item form (such as red lamp in the pic below).  Our new home colour storyThe third advise I can give is to look through some pictures of the house interiors and see what colour arrangement you like (Pinterest or Houzz have been a good source to me). For instance I like the feature wall colour in the pic below combined with bold colour picture display on it.

Lovely picture rail, pic from ilovebokkieI like red as an accent colour but I might try this and paint bigger furniture in red as well. The pic bellow comes from Apartment Therapy.

Bold red accent cabinet, pic from apartment therapyAlthough black is not a main colour in my colour story I would love to have a black board wall where we could scribble things! The pic bellow comes from IKEA website as an inspiration.Black board wall, Ikea kitchen inspirationAnd of course I would love to decorate the house with many plants! The pic bellow comes from My Attic.plant overload, pic from entermyatticI hope you found this useful :-)

Rasa x


August favourites

Can you believe it? Today is the last day of Summer.... and then the Autumn! I actually miss colder days, so all good with me ;-).

August have been great too! I spend most of it preparing for our new baby arrival (it's getting close!).  I have knitted hat, pair of socks and now I am onto baby trousers.  Knitted baby hat and socksI made and ate sooo many ice-cream this month! Passion fruit & cream popsicles and brown butter peach ice-cream cake were my favourites.Ice cream!And finally, my little London flat is sold! I so look forward to buying our new place and new DIY journey :-).Sold: my little London flatHappy Autumn tomorrow!

Rasa xoxo


July favourites

Goodbye JulyJuly has been a holiday month for us! We were very lucky to visit Iceland this year and of course visit my family in Lithuania. We enjoyed every bit of it!Wild strawberries in LithuaniaDuring our holiday we celebrated our 1st anniversary! Our first wedding anniversary! Iceland My finished nursing chairWe gradually getting ready for our new family member coming in October. Joni's mum and myself have finally refurbished my old chair so it is now suitable for nursing!This is how 28 weeks pregnant looks likeHave a wonderful August!

Rasa xoxo


June favourites

We are selling our house in London!June have been very exciting, mostly because we have finally decided to sell our house in London. We are hoping to settle in Bedford and buy a bigger house here. I am so looking forward to new DIY adventure (this time I am definitely blogging about it here)!We are selling our house in London! We are selling our house in London!June favourites: our Airbnb stay in BristolSince we started the buying process I can't think of nothing else than home deco. We have visited some family in Bristol recently and stayed in this lovely Airbnb Georgian house. I just loved the the combination of vintage deco with modern and very Mediterranean looking Montpelier neighbourhood. Sadly it was raining when we were leaving and the pictures here do not do it justice :-(. June favourites: our Airbnb stay in Bristol June favourites: baking Joni's birthday cakeWe also celebrated Joni's 31st birthday this month (yey!). We spend the whole weekend in Mudeford (still can't get out of my head the image of those cute little beach huts!). For this occasion I baked and made raspberry trifle cake.June favourites: our weekend in beautiful MudefordThanks for letting me share. Happy July!

Rasa xoxo


May favourites

Bye Bye MayIt's June already so essentially you could call it summer, but somehow it doesn't feel like summer :(. Although I do believe it will come soon! For now I thought I will share my May favourites.

First I was addicted to strawberries (I guess thats what baby wants and needs :-D). No wonder I ate almost one pack of strawberries almost every day! I finally tried making a clotted cream from scratch so I could have my strawberry filled cream tea. Click here to see how it went.cream tea: making clotted cream from scratchI finished my favourite book of the year ("Two Caravans" by Marina Lewycka), the next book "Sense and Sensibility" is quite challenging (did not start it yet as I find old language difficult to understand and therefore off-putting). "two caravans" book reviewI absolutely loved this refreshing chilled cucumber soup, I wish warm days come soon so I can have it for every lunch (well, almost).Chilled cucumber soupI finished crocheting my crop top, although a little late :-(. It is making me look a bit... well... fat, because it is loose and look wide on my new bump. This made me realise the importance of highlighting the bump when pregnant as the risk of looking fat is very high!Finished cropped crochet top: don't quite fit with my new bump :-DHave a fun June!

Rasa xoxo


My maternity wear wish list

Rubber band trick to adapt jeans for maternityAccording to my pregnancy apps today I am half way in my pregnancy (as difficult as it is to believe it!!). Although I look like I just ate a really good breakfast (don't look very pregnant at all), I no longer fit into my regular jeans :-(. I tried the rubber band trick on the jeans to fit my new shape (pic above), but that only worked for few weeks or so. After that I had a phase of wearing dresses only. Right now I am a proud owner of two pairs of maternity jeans! I initially planned to make some alterations to my existing jeans, but then realised I did not have any not-so-liked jeans that I could risk and destroy.

So far I have two lovely maternity dresses (one from Mothercare and one from M&S), very comfy boyfriend cut jeans and super good looking skinny jeans. I am thinking I need to get nice shorts as well, but not too sure if it will be practical since I will be wearing them maximum for two months...My wish list: H&M Mama denim shortsWould love to own this so-it-seems-very-versatile black dress even if it's a little pricy.  My wish list: Isabelle Oliver Arran Maternity DressI am also in love with this so-my-style dress, however a bit not sure about it's length. Maybe I should make my own?My wish list: ASOS maternity shirt dress And the last but not least, I am thinking I will need lots of basic vests. Can't go wrong with them, can you?

Hope you have a great week and remember it is shorter then other weeks ;-)

Rasa xoxo