Monthly Archives: December 2011

Cregle iPen!

It looks like an interesting, though quite expensive concept. The iPen developed by Cregle, seeks to turn your iPad into an active digitizing stylus. The company claimed it is the “first active digitizer stylus” for the iPad, but was quickly made to eat their words by the Verge, who claimed that the pen is simply a rebadge of the product already sold under the Aiptek, ByZero and EFUN names.
It took the Cregle Team only few hours to respond in a similar manner. They apologized for “an oversight on their part” and expressed what they think of the Verge’s complaints by saying: ‘The market can then judge who has done the best job of transforming this wonderful new technology into a useful, reasonably-priced product that integrates with popular iPad applications to provide a complete handwriting solution.’
So now your turn. You can judge it. But it costs around $90. And doesn’t fit the iPad case.



Wrapping Presents – Scrabble Tiles

With Christmas just around the corner, there can’t be a better topic to touch upon, than wrapping presents. I love wrapping gifts. This is probably my favourite thing about Christmas. I try to do something new each year, allthough i’ve got my favourite tricks that i like to use when i’m suddenly short of sophisticated gift wrapping ideas.
Here is one of them: Scrabble Tiles. First of all –  buy an additonal set – don’t use the one you’ll need to actually play Scrabble. Guess why 🙂
I recommend buying wooden tiles. They look so much nicer than the plastic ones.
You can find them for example on EBAY

Glueing the letters is the most difficult part – if your gift needs to travel before reaching its destination, it’s best to use a double-sided adhesive tape

Once you’ve got your letters ready – label your gifts with appropriate names. That’s all you need to make your gift stand out from the crowd.
gift wrapping scrabble tiles

scrabble tiles gift wrapping

gift wrapping ideas

Scrabble Tiles labels

Similar idea apparently shared this year other bloggers:
Jenny from a bird in the hand art

and Alison from Oopsey daisy


Bing Magical Holiday Calendar

I’m a little bit late but you shouldn’t have to miss out. Magical Holiday Calendar is the latest marketing initiative from Bing. This seemingly ugly, black and white thing is supposed to help you discover the magic of holidays. The icons are numbered and you can only click on the one that matches the date or earlier. Each icon hides gifts, creative ideas and special offers (for US citizens only). Frankly speaking, in the beginning I wasn’t quite sure how it works and where the fun is supposed to be hidden – which is not very good, right?
I had to google it (yes, GOOGLE it, not BING it )  and digest the results for a while first, to understand that Bing really cares about my Christmas spirit and it also wants me to use Bing instead of Google 🙂 And while I can confirm that my Christmas spirit has been significantly enhanced – NO, i still don’t use Bing instead of Google.

On a lighter note: I always find this disclaimer amusing:  ‘This Promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You are providing your information to Microsoft and not to Facebook.’ A sign of the times..

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Homemade Christmas Cards

They say it’s never too early to start thinking about the Christmas cards. In my world there is never good time to start thinking about them, until it’s seriously too late – like now 🙂
Honestly – there is a very little chance that you come up with something breathtakingly creative this season, if you (like me) haven’t even started thinking about it yet.
But I’ve scoured the web for you and found some simple ideas, that don’t take much time, talent or material but will leave a lasting impression on everybody.

1. First of all – here is a little cheat for you. Recycle!! Look for some old Christmas cards that you received in the past seasons. Cut off the the front of the card and make it into a postcard. Just remember not to send somebody the same card ash he sent you last year! (although I doubt that they actually remember).

2. Nature! Using nature as an inspiration will never fail you. It never goes out of style and it’s extremely easy to do! You can practically glue one simple piece of mistletoe/pine bough/holly leaf to the front of your card and… have just created a DIY christmas card – as minimalistic as it was always meant to be, right? 🙂

3. Collage – December issues of almost every magazine you can buy, are usually full of brilliant pictures, graphics and ready holiday greeting. You just need some glue and scissors to give them a new life in your xmas cards.

4. Family photos. You have to be really careful with this one – of course your kids look cute in these Santa Claus hats. And nobody would deny they look lovely under the mistletoe. But…why would anybody besides you and their grandparent want to receive a Christmas card with their picture on the front? No idea. So no matter how much you feel tempted, please send it only to your closest family and friends. My ex-boss used to prepare New Year’s calendars for all his employees – each month had a face of one of his kids and their birthday were marked in the calendar as a public holiday. Pretty embarassing gift I must say 🙂

Ah, I almost forgot. The last point also refers to cat owners. For all of you who actually have a cat: for people that don’t have one, they all look the same!! Don’t want to see them on my Christmas card 🙂

Tea soup


To begin with, it is not something I have tried to cook myself just yet!  (i won’t blame you if you stop reading right now 🙂 )
However, the idea is so appealing that I can’t help but to share it with you.
I have tasted my first tea soup at a tea lounge Samovar in San Francisco. This place is so magical that before I say more about the tea soup, let me show you what does it mean to work in Samovar. The short video perfectly conveys the atmosphere of this place:


The tea soup that they are so proud of it’ s a very simple concept. Basic you’d say! Just some vegetables and rice, mixed together with a pot of delicious tea.
What it DOES have, that other soups don’t?

  • It’s beautiful – I love colourful food. It’s not a typical veggie soup where you can barely tell what is potato and what is a cauliflower
  • It’s surprising – We’re so used to drinking tea as a … a tea, that having it in a soup, makes all your taste receptors go wild (really!)
  • It has a WOW effect. When I ordered it everybody in Samovar got interested and wanted to order the same. You’ll find nothing better if you want to make friends in a restaurant 🙂

Simple recipe:

  • Gather your soup content (broccoli, bean, carrot, wakame, tofu, onion, RICE)
  • Use the freshly brewed tea instead of water!
  • Experiment with different types of tea
  • Adjust the seasoning – soya sauce and ginger is necessary in my opinion
  • Enjoy your soup!

Anyone brave enough to try it at home – let me know immediately.  Anyone encouraged to go to Samovar instead – take me with YOU!!

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He may not have received the Nobel price this year, but it seems to only have a positive effect on his books’ sales figures. There’s nothing better for dedicated fans than an idol who didn’t get the prize he deserves! (well of course he does, right? :))

In the next months you can certainly expect new editions of all his greatest works (which means all) and an exclusive interview with Haruki Murakami in almost every single magazine. But before you start rolling your eyes, let me get to my point here:
More Haruki Murakami’s books means more beautiful and inspring book covers! Actually, his books’ covers are now almost af famous as the books themselves!
You can even buy a 152 pages book-on-Murakami’s-book-cover style, (what should we call it? A Metacover book?) containing colour reproductions of all his book’s covers. Great X-mas present, huh? (check here). But in case you don’t feel like spending 13$ on the book, look below. Beautiful Murakami’s covers are here for you..and totally for free 😉


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Now that’s what you call a Fancy Gadget!

This little printer delivers a little, personalised package newspaper, based on the subscriptions you seto on your smartphone.
In the old days, that’s what we needed personal assistants for. Now you need only Little Printer. Shame, it doesn’t make a coffee though..

More here!

Winter tree

If I weren’t so attached to the idea of a traditional, fresh, green christmas tree, I would probably go for something white and classy this year. When I was younger I used to imagine my “grown-up life” in “my late twenties” (I know, don’t tell me. I really believed that you learn and gain experience until the age of 25 and after that you just savour your “mature taste”), spending Christmas by the white, artificial christmas tree (real, fresh ones are for kids, right?:)),  with a beloved person. Strangely enough, watching my “late twenties” turn slowly into “thirties”, I still buy a real christmas tree, go nuts with the pine needles falling off and I have never ever spent my Christmas time alone with a man. You can have a date every day of the year! Christmas should be all about being with your family!