Tuesday, 28 August 2012


I feel bad that my posts are mostly just random glimpses into my new location. I also feel bad that I haven't spent any time reading your blogs lately. There is just so much going on here all the time. I do want to say thank you to all of you who have kept reading and commenting, even though I have been a bad blogger and I haven't been reading any of your blogs. You guys are awesome.

Anyway, back to what's going on here. Things are pretty hectic. I am staying at my mother's house until our house nearby is ready to be moved in. Right now it looks like that will take some time. I have some work-related projects going on, and I spend most of my free time a) reading interior design magazines and b) worrying about the house renovation. Thank goodness my mother is here to drag me to the woods every now and then, and she makes me go pick some berries in the yard. I take a moment here and there, stand on the porch of my mother's old sauna building, and look at the lake. And hope that the mosquitos don't eat me alive.

This is an old sauna, a wonderful wood-burning one without plumbing, and it's right by the lake. It smells like resin and piles of dry wood. Saunas don't get any better than this one. My mother heats it up almost every night. We relax in the warmth and go skinny-dipping in the lake, like us Finns do.
I'm wearing a men's shirt from some random online shop, a raw-silk skirt from a flea market, and second hand loafers. In case you are wondering where all these clothes came from during the time most of my clothes are in transit between New York and Finland, the answer is: all sorts of clothing stashes I've found in my mother's house and in my sister's apartment. It seems that my experiment with a limited wardrobe has become very short-lived indeed!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Fields and forests

My mother and I took a little trip to the nearby woods. We walked past some fields and came across my stepfather's tractor. The above is my countryside look. Ï've been wondering how my style might change (alongside some other aspects of our lives) due to our relocation, but I guess it's way too early to draw any conclusions. I didn't think about style issues today. As my mother and I walked on, I thought about how much I have missed the Finnish forests and fields over the years.

There is something about the sound of wheat in the wind, and how the cobs feel against the palm of one's hand.

There is something about the way the late summer light hits the pine trees. Huge, green floors of moss, and how one's feet sink into it. The lingering scent of mushrooms and berries. The calls of familiar birds.

Lingonberries are ready.

We'll be eating mushrooms today.


I've tried to feel sensible about our move to Finland and to the countryside. I've felt the need to somehow control my emotions, and I've tried to approach most things rationally. I am not entirely sure why I've felt that way. Perhaps a part of me is worried about our ability to embrace the enormity of all the changes, or maybe it's because Chris and the kitties are not here yet. But then there are days like today, when everything I see around me just feels right - in my heart, in my head, in my ears, on my fingertips tainted by the blueberries I've eaten. It's good to be here.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Our new house, then and now


The above is what our house looked like in 1950... and this is what it looks like today:

Not bad, right? There is a saying in Finnish which goes along the lines of "many cakes are pretty on the outside", and it means that you can´t really trust things just on the basis of their appearance. Sadly the saying holds true when it comes to our house. As pretty as the house looks, the interior is rough. It needs a lot of work. A LOT. But hey, we have apple trees and sort of a lake view!

And we have an adorable, old barn, too.

As you might imagine, things are a little hectic at the moment. I hope to return to regular blogging soon!

Friday, 10 August 2012

USA - Finland

This is my last post from the United States. I'm off to Finland on Sunday. The cats will travel as soon as the weather permits, and Chris will join us shortly after. As you might imagine, leaving is both exciting and sad. I've said a lot of goodbyes to a lot of people I hold dear during the last couple of days. I can't say it's been easy. I've cried a lot. 

The day I leave the US will be the same date, August 12th, as the one in 2009 when I arrived in the US with Chris and the cats. Three years have gone by so quickly, and yet I feel like I've lived here longer. It's been a profoundly good experience. Chris and I (and the kitties, of course) have been very happy here. I will miss our little house. I will miss the ice-cream stand we frequent, the one at the industrial park, where we sit under the awning, dangling our feet and watching the trucks drive by. I will miss the little antique shops. The rolling hill-tops. Even the annoying local news' weather guy. Most of all, I will miss our friends and family here. Nights spent playing cards or just talking about life, and hunting vintage jewelry with Lynn. It is difficult to leave all that behind. And then there are some things that I am not going to miss, like the humid summers and the horrible-tasting tap water. Our loud neighbours. The standard measuring system. The slowly decaying, dying town: the empty buildings with boarded-up windows, the closed-down businesses. I say that I am not going to miss it... but there is indescribable beauty in the crumbling bricks and the movie theaters that have not shown any movies in twenty years.

Finland will be a big change for us. I've never lived in the countryside before. Chris is not yet capable of communicating in Finnish. The cats will have a heck of a day when they fly across the pond, and I am sure it will take them a while to get accustomed to their new home. So off I go, to get things started for us. We welcome our new adventures with open arms and open hearts.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Samuji F/W 2012

The future of Finnish fashion design is Samu-Jussi Koski and his brand Samuji. The clothes are simply breathtaking.

Samuji Fall Winter 2012 from Samu-Jussi Koski on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

The best dress

Clothes don't get much more comfortable than this Marimekko dress. It's made of excellent quality cotton, the cut is simple and easy (the neckline in particular is perfect), the pockets are practical, and the colours are fresh. The side slit is fun. It's clothes like these that make me wonder about some of the other pieces of clothing I have in my wardrobe. Every single piece I own should be like this one: the kind you want to wear every day.

Dress: second hand Marimekko, belt: my mom's old, shoes: some old online purchase.