Monday, 16 December 2013

Remember Last Summer?

When days are short and dark, it is good to take a look at the pictures captured last summer. This was taken one sunny day in June when Helsinki showed her most charming side and allowed us to cycle aimlessly around in warmth and brightness.

Friday, 6 December 2013

Independence Day

Today is Finland's Independence Day. At six o'clock I lit two candles and placed them on a window sill. As we do every year on 6th of December. I watched the Independence Day concert from the television and shed a tear or two when a choir sang Finlandia Hymn. I thought of my grandparents who lost six year of their lives fighting for us in the war, and I also shed a tear or two for the great man of South Africa, who passed away on the eve of our Independence Day.

Rest in peace, all you heroes.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013


Every Christmas present ready and wrapped and it is only the beginning of December. I am super early. I am also aware that the gifts in the picture do not illustrate my Christmas handicap. I did it so early to get over with it, not to drag Christmas obligations along too long.

And if you wonder, the recepients of the gifts do not read my blog. For them this will always be elves job made in secret.

My toes at the bottom of the picture are wrapped in self-made woll slippers I was supposed to wrap in paper too, but after felting them, they came out different size and I gifted them to myself. What a generous elf I am.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Baking Spinach Feta Pies

Today's achievement was Spinach Feta Pies. I used a recipe my friend uses in her spinach feta pasta inside ready made puff pastry. Here you go:

Spinach Feta Pies

Puff pastry
pine seeds

I got ready made puff pastry and a bag of frozen spinach from the shop. Defrosted them at home, fried the spinach lightly on a hot pan and mixed feta in in small crumbs. I stirred until the cheese melted and added pine seeds in and lifted the pan off the hot plate. The pastry was already rolled out, so I just needed to cut the set squares into halfs and thus make them even. I then measured a spoon full of feta-spinach mix in the middle of the square, folded the tough into triangles and sealed the edge with water. Before baking the pies in 200 C for 15-20 minutes, I brushed them with egg.

Super easy and super delicious.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

The Advent

Christmas time is officially here. There are two things, which tell me that. The first is the first Happy Holidays card, I received on the last day of November. The second teller is the date. The first Advent. I am not a big Christmas fan, as I find it way too loaded with expectations. If I could, I would delete Christmas from the calendar, but since there is no such an option, I do my best to co-exist with it. So, I lit a candle today and try to allow Christmas in. 

Friday, 29 November 2013


Between trips to Oulu and Tallinn, I visited Lausanne, Switzerland. It was a great journey to the country I last visited in 1999. I did there what one needs to do there. Visited a new town, vineyard and had fondue and raclette to eat.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

As Charming as Ever

It was grey, and there was a lack of light in Tallinn yesterday, but the old lady smiled at me, as always. She was as charming as ever.

This time I did not buy any yarn, although I wanted. I did not buy the must-have-earrings either, but resisted and decided to invest that amount in the stock market. Yes, I shall. Before you draw an illusion of a rich investor named Mianna, let me disappoint you. I am talking about mere 35 euros. However, I am drawing the illusion myself now and see me shopping two pairs of must-haves and a mountain of yarn on my next trip to Estonia.

Despite my great resistance to spending, I am a proud owner of a ceramic mug with a dragon fly motif and a wooden butter knife. Both hand made. So, there's the excuse.

Other highlights of the day were borscht soup eaten at a Georgian restaurant, a bottle of Georgian white shared with a travelling companion and a a visit to a kohvik. A trip to Tallinn is not a trip unless you enjoy a lovely cup of coffee with a sweet little pastry. Mine was white chocolate apple cube, which looked as French as the cafe itself. Cafe Josefine's decor was about red velvet and dim lights, which made the place look very Molin Rouge indeed.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013


It is in Helsinki now. Winter I mean. Cold only, no snow yet. I do not mind it at all, but would not mind a bit more day light. That will return in few months time. I know.

Tomorrow I am off to my beloved Tallinn again. I shall shop yarn and shall post many knitting themed posts this winter again. I have already knitted four pairs of mittens with a peek hole for an index finger. An innovation, which allows mobile addicts to play with their devices without freezing their fingers. Others than the index one, of course. Too bad I do not have any pictures to prove my achievements, as everything is neatly wrapped in Christmas gift papers. I am record early this year. I am not a big Christmas person and decided to get over with all the preparations early and spend the rest of the year with more important things, such as knitting.

To remind you of my Tallinn and my last visit there, I chose a picture I took a year ago on my last visit.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Back from Oulu


Indeed, I just got back from Oulu. It was not the same journey though I wrote about in my previous post. Oh no. That was in June and there was a whole summer between the two trips. I did not take any pictures this time, as it does not make any difference. Oulu had not changed in four months. The town still looks like a gigantic construction site. There are so many of them all around right now, that you barely recognise the place a town at all. In a way it is nice, because Oulu might look nicer one day, but on the other hand, the process of getting there is really no eye candy. Plus knowing the city's finances, I pray that they got the budgets right.

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Graduating from Jeans to Heels

It is the graduation weekend. I am cramped on a train seat travelling to Oulu to celebrate a nephew. If I was a fashion blogger, this would probably pass as my daily out-fit picture. Red and white stripes in a tee, jeans and ballerinas. For the moment I'm dressed for comfort, but in few hours its all about a dress and heels.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Fighting Basil

The chap, who used to live in the apartment where I am currently residing, left a garden of basil behind. Nine plants planted in cut milk cartons. All different varieties. Too bad, they do not do too well in my care. I don't know whether I water them too much or too little. They also had a banana fly colony living in them, which was bugging me mad. So, after two weeks in Helsinki, I cycled to Helsinki Recycling Centre, bought clay pots at 20 cents a piece, got some soil, replanted and paid farewell to flies. The pots look good now, but there is no difference in plants. My nerves are cracking again. The flies are back.

Monday, 27 May 2013


After a busy weekend, I am taking it easy at home. Looking around, seeing details. Coasters, fruits and old glass items on the shelf.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Memory Lane - Bangkok, Thailand, Vol 1

There was a time when I lived in Bangkok. I loved it. I called it home. 

Tonight I am off to see the Great Gatsby here in Helsinki. The city I call home now.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Stranded in Tampere

On Monday I made a little day trip to Jyväskylä. It was for work and there was no time to stroll around or sit down for a cuppa there. Thus there is no picture from Jyväskylä this time. However, I got stranded at Tampere Railway Station on the way back for a half of an hour. Guess what? I took  pictures.

It was not the weird statue, but the yellow tulips that triggered this shoot.

Last ten minutes on the platform were slow. I pictured myself. And no, I am not wearing white socks with ballerina pumps. That is my Finnish winter skin. Shocking. 

There was a shop opposite the Railway Station. I went in just to browse around and came out with a new note book and a set of moustaches. Moustaches?! Seriously?! Moral of the story - avoid getting stranded in Tampere.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Hanami - Cherry Blossom Celebration

The cherry blossom celebration Hanami is organised every May in Roihuvuori in Eastern Helsinki. Yes, there are lots of cherry trees around there and this year they blossomed just at the right time.

People had placed their pick nick blankets under the cherry trees and everybody seemed relaxed and happy.

There were stalls exhibiting Japan related hobbies, businesses and some selling food. The queues to the food stalls were long and therefore I did not get to taste any Japanese specialties. I guess it was a healthy balance to Saturday's Restaurant Day.

There was a stage, which was inhabited by jumping children whenever there was no programme such as Koto music being played, drumming, Kendo or Tando shows, Buto dance or what not.

The white washed ladies are from a dance troupe Buto Hutera. 
There was also a best dress competition. Audience had been asked to dress up anything Japan related. I did not stay long enough to see who won, but if it had been me who chose the winner, she would have won.

I missed all Geisha chocolate offerings and it was my only complaint about the event. Otherwise it was just purrrrfect.