Posts Tagged ‘coasters’

Central/Eastern European souvenirs

laelene Posted in lifestyle glimpses,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This most recent trip to Europe allowed me to revisit some places I hadn’t been to in 9 years and also check out new places that have been on my wishlist. It was a lot of fun and I got some gifts along the way to remember each place by!

Our first official stop was Praha (Prague). There were so many artists, musicians, and crafters to be found everywhere. In one of of the shops, I got my first souvenir – a little metal cup. One of the few that wasn’t a glossy finish, which appealed to me.

teal metal cup with owl designs

I liked the matte look and the funky owls!

Then as we were walking across Charles Bridge, perusing the various vendors, I saw a guy selling these adorable paintings! I just had to have one since he had such a fun style and had cats in each piece. This one is perfect because it has the cat couple, plus two extra cats – just like me, Panda, and our cats.

original artwork of prague with cats and hot air balloons at night

I loved that this incorporated cats and had cute little hot air balloons.

Next up was Warszawa (Warsaw), where we explored a massive park and the Neon Muzeum, all the while eating peirogis. I managed to add to my growing collection of TOUS jewelry (this is the 4th piece) and find some local folk art. I’m very happy with the usefulness of the giant coaster, which will be good for putting pots on.

tous onyx bear necklace from warsaw

When we saw a TOUS store at one of the shopping centers, we couldn’t resist. I finally got something from the onyx collection I’d been eyeing!

brightly-colored coaster with roosters and flowers

I originally saw a tote bag with a similar design, but I have so many bags that I was determined to find this look and feel on a different product.

Then we were off to Wien (Vienna) to fulfill my long-awaited dream of seeing the Spanish Riding School. We also went to tour one of Mozart’s homes and the Haus der Musik. When we came across the stalls by St. Stephen’s Cathedral, I found the opportunity to get something with the word “Vienna” on it. I liked the handmade nature of these glass cups that are perfect for holding a tea light.

glass cup for candles with colorful stained-glass scene handpainted on

We had just a few Euros left, but I really liked this one because the name was easily visible (unlike the others where Vienna was along the bottom). We had to pay in a combo of Euros and dollars!

After that, it was down to Split in Croatia. We enjoyed exploring the city of Split, where I found the amazing backpack that is perfect for my needs. We spent a whole day going up to Krka National Park for the waterfalls (freezing cold water, but totally worth it!). And of course, we just had to go out to Hvar Island to check it out. My favorite was going over to Palmizana, a smaller island off of Hvar.

drawstring backpack with elephant design from split, croatia

All pockets open and close with a magnet, which I love. There are side pockets inside as well as zippered areas inside and on the back. All sorts of storage options!

box of lavender buds and essential oil drops, plus bonus pouch of lavender buds from hvar in croatia

Apparently there are lots of lavender fields in the area, so at Hvar I got this adorable box filled with lavender buds. There’s a bottle of essential oil inside as well, to help enhance the scent with a few drops every now and then. The lady kindly gave me a pouch as a bonus.

Finally, rounding out the trip was Budapest, with fantastic views from the Buda side. I loved getting goulash nearly every meal and we got to relax at the Szechenyi thermal baths. Up at Citadella, I saw a tower of mugs (think Christmas tree shape, except everything hanging is mugs) and knew I had to get one. I wasn’t crazy about any of the color combos, so I waited to find them again elsewhere until I decided on this funky one.

giant polka-dotted mug from budapest

My ladybug mug, as it will be known. It’s really a bowl with a handle and I can just about stick my entire face in it.

So these are all the items I have to remind me of this super fun trip to Central/Eastern Europe! I tried to get things I would use and not just stuff to put on a shelf. There’s so much more that I would have liked to have gotten, but that will have to wait for next time. 🙂

Escape Monthly August: Hawaii Box review

laelene Posted in reviews, subscriptions,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wow, Hawaii again? I hadn’t paid attention to when they announced the next month’s theme or I might have thought about the wisdom of a third Hawaii-themed box. Still, it turned out ok and there isn’t much overlap in products, which is great.

Escape Monthly is just under $40 per box (with code for 20% off your subscription – see end of post) and comes with a variety of food, home, skincare items themed around a city/region. Each box comes with a guide for that area. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral commission program.

escape monthly august hawaii box products showing escape monthly august hawaii box info sheet escape monthly august hawaii box info sheet opened with details of products included(click to enlarge and read full messaging)

I must say, I’m pleased with the selection here and really found some new favorites!

Here’s what came in the box:

Moon Handbooks guide to Maui – Darn, this is the same one I got in the second Hawaii box. I wish it was a third kind so I could keep amassing my collection! Now I don’t know what to do with this. Maybe donate it to a library?

Island Art Store map of old Hawaii vintage-style postcard – Adorable postcard that I’m going to keep as art! I love the look and feel and it’s a great little map of Hawaii. It’s just too nice to actually use!

Pure-Aid sport sunscreen – While sunscreen is important, I wish they’d included either a local brand or a tropical scented one at least. The sport version just seems generic, though it will be useful for the outdoor activities you’d want to do in Hawaii.

Kahala Pineapple slices – These are amazing snacks that I already want more of. I love how the pineapple is soft and slightly chewy. Most dried pineapple gets too hard and chewy for my liking. The sweetness was just right to offer a snack that’s also a treat. I see they’re in Whole Foods all around Hawaii, but what about elsewhere?! I’ll keep searching every Whole Foods I go to.

glass coasters – Totally random items that weren’t even listed but this pair of coasters is one of my favorite items. Ever since being a homeowner, I’ve enjoyed mundane household things. Like cute glass coasters. The design of seashells fits the Hawaiian theme nicely and these coasters add an elegant look to our coffee table.

surfboard keychain – This surfboard is nice and smooth with a glossy finish. I love the look of it but I wish I’d gotten any color other than pink! Oh well, it still looks good and I might swap out the Australian surfboard keychain on my keys for this one now.

Island Soap Candle Works plumeria blossom body wash – The body wash smells great, with a nice light flowery scent. I’ve never had anything plumeria scented before! I’m surprised this is the bonus item and would have expected the surfboard or coasters, but hey we seem to always get the bonus item anyway so that’s great.

Ola coconut body lotion – I’ve got this same scent from this brand in the body butter, which is of course thicker than this lotion. The coconut scent is quite subtle once you rub it on and the consistency is somewhat runny.

Ola passion fruit body mist – Whoa, what an immensely fruity smell! Great in the spring to liven things up, or to remind you of blossoming flowers. I like that this spray can be used around the room, on linens, or of course, on the body. It’s sure to add a little boost to the experience.

MacaMania Anahola tropical granola  – I’ll never love granola bars, but this one looks pretty good. I’m saving it for a trip when we do something like hiking or a long drive. It’s great to have a burst of energy for those types of things.

I’m happy with the different products being showcased this time around, but I do wish they wouldn’t rely on Hawaii so much. The third year in a row isn’t necessary when there are so many places in the world yet to explore. Which products from this Hawaii Escape Monthly box would you want too? If you want to sign up, be sure to sign up for their newsletter to get a code for 20% off the lifetime of your subscription.

Next up is Greece! Now that’s a great place we haven’t escaped to yet and I can’t wait to see what comes. I’ve been there before and really enjoyed it, so I hope some things remind me of my trip.

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. 🙂 All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

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