lifestyle

Tallinn Haul

Finally I managed to transfer all my photos. It was a long time coming 🙂 I wanted to do another small haul post since I got so much great stuff from my Tallinn trip!

Tallinn

White peplum top from River Island, 60$

They have run out of the blue skirt in Zara but there’s a pink one with the same shape and fabric here!

Reserved still has those joggers. 🙂

Flow Festival 2014

I was SO meant to post this last week but somehow time just flew by and I forgot. But here it is: very simple recap of Flow Festival!

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Throwing a Surprise Party: Friends, Food and Fun!

PUNCH, CAKE, CHIPS

During the weekend we threw a surprise birthday for our friend Oskar and I have to say it was one of the most successful surprise parties I’ve been a part of. Oskar’s girlfriend organized the party and asked our help in setting everything up. She had gotten amazing foods for the party: croissants with cheese, basil and strawberries; chocolate cake; blueberry pie as well as chips and chili nuts.

Recipes by Susan

The secret to throwing a surprise party seems to be balancing the line of not telling the birthday girl/boy and not alienating them. I have once organized a surprise party and during the planning period the birthday girl started thinking that her friends didn’t like her anymore because we couldn’t hang out with her as much (since we were busy planning and setting up the party). This time it was a close call since many people had to blow off meeting up with Oskar but in the end, everything went great and no one ended up ruining the surprise.

We had gotten him a gift basket – kind of like a summer care package – with a jump rope, comics, sun screen, and other things. Me and Ari also made the punch, and here’s the recipe if you want to make some:

  • bottle of white wine (something fruity)
  • liter bottle of apple-grape juice
  • 1,5 liter bottle of apple-flavored mineral water
  • half a liter bottle of vodka
  • bag of frozen berries (we used a mix with strawberries and raspberries)

It was such a fun party – even though I was suffering from a migraine earlier during the day – and it was fun seeing so many of our friends there! HAPPY BIRTHDAY OSKAR!

Introducing Merlin: Our New Kitten

MERLIN

If you’ve followed my Instagram and/or Twitter, you know that we recently (less than two weeks ago, in fact) got a little kitten, who at the time was only 12 weeks old. We named the little guy Merlin and he is officially the cutest fur ball EVER. He is light orange with tiger stripes and, even though he was very shy at first, he has turned into a very sociable and cuddlesome kitty.

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Merlin has already started to recognize his name and about half the time he even listens to the word “NO!” He cried a lot during the first days but now has settled down and accepted that there’s no use running away from the people who provide the food three times a day. He has had his first vaccinations and is a healthy kitten all around.

Things we have learned so far:

  • It’s good to have several drinking places because cats don’t always recognize their thirst and might not otherwise drink enough.
  • Kittens might seem to completely forget how to walk when you put a harness on for the first time (WARNING: you might actually die of laughter just watching your kitten wobbling around trying to learn how to walk again).
  • Milk might actually cause stomach problems for cats.
  • Get a climbing/scratching tree as soon as possible if you want to save your furniture.
  • Some cats are clearly entertained by the sight of their owner picking up poop from the litter box (maybe it’s a power kick for them).

More updates on Merlin later – that’s guaranteed!

Pride 2014

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We had Helsinki Pride 2014 last weekend and – I think this was a real miracle considering the horrible storms and rain we’ve been having – it was actually really sunny and warm during the day of the parade and park event. I’ve gone to Pride for several years now with my friends and we had agreed on a picnic date this year as well. It was such a blast seeing everyone and eating picnic lunch while listening to all the great music that was played. Especially considering that we were showing support for a cause that is very dear to our hearts.

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Pride week always shows up all over town and this year the Hard Rock Cafe celebrated by serving specially designed drinks like Melon Dreams (left) and Rainbow Power (right). In the evening there were several Pride parties but me and my friend ended up going to the official main party at Le Bonk, a nice club in the center of Helsinki, which has a really lovely roof terrace. The entertainment for the evening, in addition to the awesome DJ Miia Magia, was a pole dancing performance by a local pole dancing school Rock the Pole.

The entire day was filled with so much positivity and love that I wanted to share it with all of you! So hugs, equality, and love for you all!! ❤

May Day Festivities

overalls champagne

May Day Eve is a huge deal in Finland and it’s especially big for all the students who take out their overalls from whatever dark corner they lie in all year long and stitch all their new patches in and go party. I ended up going to two different parties at the university and then heading to our student organization’s annual picnic.

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My wonderful friend Banafsheh took this picture of me while we were watching tug of war and waiting in line for the bathrooms. The lei is courtesy of another friend, Kaisa, who always whips them out for May Day Eve.

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patch  dani  patch

Here are a few pictures of my overall patches. The first one is kind of a “must-have” for an English major like me. And the pony patch is the patch for Better Than Sliced Bread, which I write for so I need to have one of them as well 😀

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And last, but not least, is my friend Kaisa who kept me company for the whole day (and behind her is her boyfriend who was snacking on chips while I took the picture 😀 ). We were lucky because the weather forecast had promised rain but in the end the weather remained semi sunny for the entire picnic.

After the picnic we headed to a restaurant and then to a house party. By May Day, we were all pretty tired and partied out but then again, that was a sure sign that we had had a blast the previous day 😀

7 Reasons Why University Is One of the Best Times of Your Life

As my time doing the BA is closing to an end I’ve been reflecting a lot on the past three years. I came up with some reasons why this has definitely been some of the best time of my life – and why it’ll probably be the same for most people.

  • You’ll go to some of the greatest parties: I’ve been to an American college party (those red cups!! 😀 ), movie party to which I dressed up as Miranda from Sex and the City, English tea party, etc.
  • You’ll learn to live on a budget! When you have no income and you’re trying to get by with the little bit of money that the government gives to students and whatever you manage to save up from your summer work, you will most definitely learn how to manage your finances. No more impromptu shopping or going out to eat whenever you feel like it.
  • You get to participate in activities that will give you useful skills for the future: I’ve learned writing skills from being in our student paper BTSB as well as leadership and activity planning skills from being a tutor for the freshmen.
  • You’ll get the luxury of incorporating your own interests into your studies: so far I’ve gotten to write an essay on feminism in Gilmore Girls; western movie influences in fantasy shows like Charmed, Buffy, and Supernatural; and now I’m doing my thesis on language use in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I’m also on a food culture course right now where our final project involves cooking and next month I’ll be doing an intensive Beatles course.
  • You’ll gain once-in-a-lifetime experiences: I went to a Shakespeare study trip to Stratford and saw Billy Boyd and David Tennant. My. Life. Complete.

2013-10-13-0487 3That’s Billy Boyd; picture was from Macbeth but you probably know him from LotR

  • You get to hear from inspiring lecturers – there is nothing more amazing than listening to a truly inspiring teacher who talks about the things that you eventually want to pursue in life (in my case, translation and writing).
  • You make amazing friends who will stay with you, hopefully as long as you live! 🙂

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And that’d be me in my English philology overalls 🙂

Apartment Haul

Me and my boyfriend decided recently to update our home decor a little bit and did a trip to Ikea (and a few other stores). We managed to find quite a lot of really nice things  and now our apartment looks nicer than ever. It’s amazing how cheap some of the items were; we managed to fit almost all the things we got into our original carpet budget, which was pretty mind-boggling.

Here’s what we got:

home-decor

For the bedroom: Gulört rug and BILLY bookcase from Ikea, couple of scented candles from H&M, a cake stand (which I’m using for jewelry and make-up), Olunda love letter and Olunda splash pictures from Ikea, a white candle dish from Ikea

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For the living room: a tray from Kodin Säästöpiste, two Trådklöver rugs from Ikea, a cotton cushion cover from H&M, a LACK coffee table from Ikea
For the bathroom: a laundry basket from Kodin säästöpiste

What do you think of our purchases? 🙂

March Love in a Box Blogger Swap!

This month was my first time participating in any sort of a blogger swap. Love in a Box blogger swap is organized by Megan from Lush to Blush and Kimberly from Kimberly’s Chronicle. The rules are fairly simple: Sign up on the blogger swap page and you’ll get paired up with someone every month and after getting to know each other a bit better, you’ll send a box of surprise goodies to them. And afterwards of  course you’ll make a post about the whole thing.

Here are the more precise rules:

    1. Box value cannot exceed $25, or $20 for international swaps.
    2. Boxes must be sent by the 18th of each month, or by the 15th for international swaps.
    3. Each participant must create a blog post about the swap and include a link to this page for interested bloggers.
    4. Each participant must follow the hosts, Megan of Lush to Blush and Kimberly of Kimberly’s Chronicle on Bloglovin‘ and at least one other social media. You must also follow the blogger you are swapped with each month. Link to the blogger swap page and you’re good to go!

For my first swap, I got paired with the amazing Emily Finta from Designs by Emily F who was so nice and is a fan of pretty much all the same TV shows as me! 😀 She was such a sweetheart when we were emailing: Emily’s a graphic designer (how cool is that?!) and she is also a Harry Potter and Psych fan. She was super considerate in making sure I got my package in time (downsides of living in Finland…) and sent me the greatest pack of surprise goodies!

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 Emily’s box for me included:

  • an Amazon gift card which I used when I ordered a Buffy t-shirt I’ve been eyeing on for a while now (great choice from Emily and, yet again, very considerate because she knew it takes a long time for the package to arrive to Finland)
  • Candy which is great because I love having chocolate with coffee (also, we don’t have all those candies in Finland so it’s going to be fun to try them out!)
  • a Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm (unapologetic) in such a lovely pink shade<3
  • Buffy, Doctor Who and Harry Potter stickers, which I’ll probably use to decorate my school folders (they are in desperate need of something to make them look a bit cheerier)

Thanks again, Emily! Now, EVERYONE, go and follow her, okay?!


In other news, one of the co-host for the Love in a Box swap, Megan from Lush to Blush, recently entered into a boyfriend jeans challenge. All the participants had to style an outfit with boyfriend jeans and now Megan is one of the eight finalists! If she wins, she gets to fly out to London for a shopping trip. Here is a quote from Megan’s blog post, telling why she’d love to go:

“I have never been out of the United States, so being able to visit another country would be more than enough in itself. I have dreamed of traveling the world for as long as I can remember. I always wanted to study abroad and have planned dozens of fantasy vacays. But now I actually have to chance to go and I feel so incredibly lucky.”

Megan’s video can be found here! Go and vote for her, she’s such a great blogger and really deserves it! If you want to see her entire post about the contest, you can find it here. Go help out!

Megan Elliott

Ultimate Geek Goddesses

Geek Goddesses

Here’s a tribute to those geeky gals of Hollywood who inspire me daily!

1. Alyson Hannigan: This lovely actress first appeared on my radar as Willow Rosenberg, Buffy’s witchy friend on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Those of you who have been following my blog for a longer time might remember that I’m doing my thesis on Willow, which has been a pretty fun experience so far (well, as much fun as a stressful and difficult project like a thesis can ever be). Now Alyson has been entertaining audiences as Lily in How I Met Your Mother. She was also a part of the American Pie movies. Anyone who watches Alyson longer will not be able to resist her charm and contagious smile. She broke ground with Amber Benson in Buffy by showing a loving and long-lasting lesbian relationship on prime-time television.

2. Ellen Page: This funny gal has been in everything from Juno to Inception. She recently took a heroic stand against the pressures of Hollywood and came out as a lesbian. She excels in comedy as well as drama and looks cute as a button. What’s not to like? She’s also a feminist who does yoga and mediates regularly – something to aspire to. I can’t wait to see her in action in the new X-Men movie!

3. Amber Benson: Another member of the Buffy family. Amber portrayed Tara – Willow’s wiccan girlfriend who died tragically and left Willow brokenhearted. Amber is not only a great actress but also a prolific fantasy author with over a dozen books under her belt. She also did a small role in Supernatural – something she has in common with the lovely Felicia Day.

4. Zooey Deschanel: Zooey captured everyone’s hearts in (500) Days of Summer and now keeps us laughing with her portrayal of Jess in New Girl. Some of you might also remember her from things like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (one of my favorite books!) and Almost Famous. If her last name sounds familiar, it might be because her older sister Emily stars in the hit show Bones. Zooey is also a singer and a song-writer and she sings in many of her movie and television roles. Her huge eyes, signature bangs and penchant for vintage clothing make her even more memorable!

5. Emma Stone: Easy A, The Amazing Spider-man, The Help, and more…Emma Stone is a hilarious comedienne who has shown she’s not afraid of drama and tough issues. The funny redhead has won several awards and is on the way to becoming a superstar. She’s not afraid to be silly and has commendably stayed out of tabloids. Currently dating actor Andrew Garfield, Emma seems to be one of the most down to earth girls in Hollywood.

6. Felicia Day: The ultimate geek goddess. Felicia Day is a true gamer girl and the creator of several web series, the most famous being The Guild, which garnered a huge fan base during its six seasons. She has since appeared as a guest in several episodes of Supernatural and Outlands. And who could ever forget her short but memorable stunt as a potential Slayer in Buffy. Yes, another Buffy alumna. Felicia should be celebrated not only because of her talent but also because of her clear dedication to the geek cause and to her fans. She is a regular in different cons and always clearly excited to be there.