Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Once you´re hooked ...

Why stop at hats? :)

Here's a simple pencil case I put together. Had to choose pink buttons so it wouldn't look too "Swedish", haha.

It sort of looks like a face ...


Monday, 28 June 2010

Peruvian Birthday

Celebrated the birthday of a new friend today. He moved from Peru to Finland just a couple of weeks ago to live with his fiancé, a slightly "older" friend of mine.

They had organised a nice picnic in central Helsinki and everyone brought something to eat. In true Finnish style, we chased the sun around the park so we wouldn't freeze. At this point in summer, you tend to become an optimist. "Naah, I don't need a sweater, or termal underpants, I can sit on the cold moist grass in only a summer dress."

J even baked a cake that miraculously survived the trip in to town. Good one!


Sunday, 27 June 2010

Bra vs Bikini

Am I uneducated, or is a bra and a bikini virtually the same thing?

Then why is it okay to strut around town (!), lie in a park, or take a swim in a bikini, but not in bra and panties? (I could understand the problem if the panties suddenly turned see through by the water, but other than that ...)

It has bugged me for years. Maybe it only bugs me. I don't know. Are you bugged?

I disregarded the "norm" today. While reading in a park I got hot, and surrounded by bikini dressed women I thought "What the heck is the difference?" and took off my top and sun bathed in my bra. (A rather nice pink one, no holes or dodgy stains.) And behold, nothing happened. No raging police or mothers fleeing the park with their young ones.

Have I wasted precious energy being modest? Would you be as comfortable on a beach in your underwear as in a bikini?


Ps. Last years rant about summer "fashion".

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Midsummer Feast

Happy Midsummer! Hope you´ve had great celebrations!

Above: My first ever home made tzatziki! Yes, I'm behind. Everyone else did it in 1995. Even my baby brother knew the ingredients, but for me, it's a triumph. And a tasty one at that.

We also made "mocha squares", a hit from my childhood. This is what you brought to school if you had to sell something eatable at the afternoon break.

We´re big on vegetables in my family so we ate alot of fresh potatoes and salads. Other treats were corn on the cob, tofu sausages (for me) and herring (for my dad).
Midsummer´s Eve was grey and rainy here in Southern Finland, but today has been beautiful.

Now, another piece of "mocha square" perhaps?

Have a nice evening!

Thursday, 24 June 2010

If polar bears can do it ...

Being a dutyful Finn, I took my first swim in the sea today. We're celebrating Midsummer´s Eve tomorrow, for heaven´s sake. You have to get in before that!

I did expect the water to freeze over at any second, the weather hasn't been tropical in June. But after a few numbing minutes, it actually felt kind of nice.

I focused hard on the task, as you migt see. Flared nostrils!

And then some foot gymnastics. Flex those toes!

Finally, after all this grueling exercise, I rested on a park bench, doing my best hobo imitation. (If you find a bench without birdpoo on it, it's your obligation to lie down!)

Finnish summer ain´t so bad.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Being a good human being

It's a law, right? When the sun is out you have to sit in a park and eat ice cream.

And forgetting your book at home can result in a fine.


Italian with a Finnish twist

Oh, if all evenings could be spent with friends, eating yummy pizza and delicious rhubarb crème brulée with mango sorbet.

Hanna and I, having seen little of each other in the past few weeks, decided to meet up in a restaurant and properly catch up. (Facbook statuses can be misleading at times ...)
We talked books, food, work, babies (not our own) and all other things 20 something women going on 30 talk about.

This is my pizza (before I digested it):

And my crème brulée:

A bit of Tuesday luxury.


Tuesday, 22 June 2010

I´ll have that one, and that one, and that one, and ...

Oh dear. I just discovered an online bookstore that has free delivery. 2,2 million titles at my fingertips. How will this end?


Monday, 21 June 2010

Choose a colour. Any colour!

I'm so grateful not to be colour blind. Who can resist these vibrant fabrics and wrapping papers?

Made a trip to the yellow and blue furniture store today and stocked up on more materials for my sewing projects. I'm currently developing the ideal way of doing them. I thought I had the perfect method until halfway when I realised there was a glitch in my logic.

Fortunately I have a mother who is a sewing wizz and she's promised to show me how to get a good finish. I'm so looking forward to it!

Have a great week!

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Royal Love

Monarchist or not, who doesn´t want to celebrate a true love story?

Me, my parents, grandparents, brother and sister in law met up to watch Swedish crown princess Victoria marry her beloved Daniel.

bröllop 015

It was a beautiful wedding. They truly seem to love each other.
We took the opportunity, as you should, to have some cake (etcetera). It was a historical moment after all ...

bröllop 002

Now I want to get married. Where´s my prince?


Friday, 18 June 2010


It's done! My first ever crocheted hat has seen the light of day!

It's not as smooth as my grandmother's hats, but it's still fully functional. Anyone who wants to look like a boiled egg yolk should try it on.

I'd like to decorate it somehow. Maybe with a large crocheted flower or a few of smaller ones. I just have to learn how to do them ...


Thursday, 17 June 2010

Crocheted flower pot

I felt oddly calm today as I walked to my grandparents. I don't know if it was the tought of crocheting hats, or reading Eat, Pray, Love on the metro (I finally had to see what all the fuss is about ...) but it was pleasant.

Now back to the hats. My gran is experimenting with different ways of crocheting them. She has already made a range of really cute ones in different styles and colours.

I asked her to teach me how to do a basic hat. In elementary school I crocheted something resembling a square pot holder, but other than that, my experience has been rather limited. Crocheting something round and headhugging; Magic.

This is my baby yellow prototype. It looks like a crooked flower pot so far, but there's still hope. I'm quite excited about it. :)


Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Happy birthday to you!

Today has been my brother´s 24th birthday. We celebrated with a family dinner, home made pizza and cake and sweet strawberries dipped in chocolate.

How old are you? Six? Oh, 24. I see.

My sister in law was a bit worried the cake would "turn liquid" before we ate it, and it did melt a bit, but it was brilliant. Called " A woman's dream", according to my brother, it had large chocolate bits in it. Mmm.

I gave him a hammock. Hopefully he´ll put it up at our summer cottage so I can use it too. :P

I misjudged the amout of paper a bit and had to lenghten it with some christmas leftovers ... Stylish, I know.

Have a nice evening!

Monday, 14 June 2010

Snail killer

I took a walk this afternoon, enjoying a rain free moment in "nature". There was a lot of trees and grass and the moist circumstances had drawn a bunch of snails out on to the asphalt.

Their shells were quite beautiful and I couldn't bare the thought of them being crushed by bikes or other walkers. One by one I lifted them by the shell back into the safety of the grass.

Feeling rather smug, I began walking again. It was nice saving small, helpless animals and all that.

Watching traffic and trees I picked up the pace. A silent pox stoped me in my track. I felt something fragile under my shoe but it was too late. Turning around I could see the poor squached snail, killed by the sole of my foot.

From hero to murderer, in just a few seconds. I can still feel the shell cracking. Sniff.

Saturday, 12 June 2010

A day for the senses


Colourful day. I spent a few hours downtown and bought materials for the laptop bag and a crocheing project, blue nail varnish, a large watermelon and a shirt I just couldn't leave behind because of the vivid stripes. It might not fit perfectly but the colours make me happy.

I had lunch at a café, crammed in some work and was then spoiled by my parents: Summer's first home made, home"grown" rhubarb pie. Mmm.

Hope you're having a nice Saturday,

Friday, 11 June 2010

Finland should move to Northern America

Why oh why can't Finland be better at football? (I refuse to use the word soccer, sorry.)
It would make the FIFA World Cup so much more exciting.

I had the tv on during the first match today, South Africa vs Mexico (SA has the longest national anthem ever) but it's hard to concentrate when you don't really care who wins.

I'm looking forward to the Australia-Germany game though. Mostly because I've lived in Australia and have German friends, and even more so because I have German friends who currently live in Australia. Haha. I guess the Australian "Socceroos" are the underdogs, right?

I'm mostly bummed about the way the different nationalities are chosen for the cup. If Finland wasn't in one of the regions with the best football players in the world, we might have a chance! But now, teams from for example the US and Australia (sorry) get through, but not us.

Oh well, maybe in 15 years or so ...


Tuesday, 8 June 2010

EU salad

Two days in a row I've made salad for dinner, rabbit food as Hanna calls it. Yum I say.

Yesterday I was inspired by the Greek salad and chopped cucumber, tomato, capsicum and onion in largish pieces. But then I decided I wanted mozarella cheese instead of feta cheese, so it became more Italian than Greek and finally I poured French dressing over it all and ended up calling it an EU salad.

Today I began with the same base but chopped it into smaller pieces and chose squeaky bread cheese and pineapple as ad ons. I might not look as civilised as the first one but it was just as good.

Although all year is veggie time for a vegetarian, summer definitely gives vegetables a boost on th menue.

Have a nice evening!


Monday, 7 June 2010

Tea for two

I have just seen the most endearing piece of art. This water feature, hidden away in a small garden in central Helsinki.

It's called "Teetä kahdelle" (Tea for two) and invites you to to sit down, with a nice cup of tea and a book, some knitting or just a dear friend who makes you giggle. I will visit it numerous times this summer, I'm sure.


Sunday, 6 June 2010

Property ladder 101

Buying your first property in Helsinki can be a pain. The prices for reasonably sized, and even miniscule homes can give anyone the hiccups.

But dispair not. Here comes Madicken's property guide. Read on if you want to become a first time home owner.

Begin with a starter home. It won't tick all your boxes, but the main thing is to get on the property ladder. Take this nice piece of property. It might not be big, have indoor plumbing or heating, but it will only set you back about 100 000 euros. And as a bonus, you won't have problems with bears or wolves.

When you've bought your first property and saved up a bit of capital, it's time to move on. Think bigger. Windows, full sized door, a couple of rooms for you and your dog/husband/baby/super cool library/all of the above. Get that 350 000 euros together and you're one step closer to property nirvana.

You've made it! You have the money, you've sold up your 1 bedroom house and now you are thinking big. This might be "The One". And yes, now that you've come this far, it's time to splurge, so why not buy the: Tadaa! Large log house with red bricks painted on it. The Duchess from St Petersburg did it, so why shouldn't you? It's oh so posh.

Now, that was Madicken's lesson in getting on, and successfully climbing the property ladder in Helsinki. Thank you for tuning in. See you next time.


Friday, 4 June 2010


Hello, sorry about the short break, but now I'm back. :)

I spent most of yesterday with my friend H. She has just come back from a 9 month around the world trip so there was alot of catching up to do!

So, why not cram in coffee/lunch, shopping, and a movie all in one day. We saw SATC 2. Not too sure about the movie, but it had entertaining moments.

We got to know each other when we began studying at uni at the same time almost 7 years ago. This pic is almost that old, but I still like it. :)

(No, we did not go to circus uni together, but it's too much hassle to explain the costumes right now ...) :P


Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Who ate my shoe?

I went down to my local park this morning to get the creative juices flowing. It's sometimes easier to be productive outside or in a café, somewhere where there's a bit of noice and other people.

I can report that the masses of tourists that ascend on this particular park every summer, have arrived. Poor old Sibelius monument doesn't get a moment of rest for a few months.

Anywho, to get to the point, I was sitting on a bench, watching people watch the monument when I realised a piece of my right shoe was missing. A pretty large piece!

What happened? I'm sure they were fine at the end of last summer, but now it looks like someone chewed on them or something. An evil shoe eating monster! I'm afraid this was the last outing for my dear dotted ballerinas. Sniff.

I'm now debating if I should take a nap or not. It's always hard with the big desicions. :P (What I really should do is wash the clothes from my trip ... Hmm.)