Saturday, 30 January 2016

New hair color. Again.

And while we're on the topic of hair... Opted for something a bit more natural this time. Feels good. this is me just before going out social dancing on Friday, in my favorite pale green and gold vintage dress. What. A. Fun. Night! Never thought I would dance meringue, but I was wrong. 

Wedding hair-spo

There's a loooooot of pretty hair-styles to go for if your are getting married... The inspiration on Pinterest is limitless. It gets a bit more tricky if you have short hair, like me, but still. I'm having my hair done at a salong for the ceremony (that's when we'll have a photographer and our wedding photo shoot) and for the day of the party I plan to do my own hair. As I don't have a lot of raw material to work with, I want to give the stylist a few different ideas to chose from so I picked three themes and sent over these pictures to him (sources under the collages):

Soft, glamorous and wavy

1, 2, 3, 4

Retro, with a victory roll or two

5, 6, 7, 8

Romantic and messy, preferably with at least one braid 

9, 10, 11, 12

I will not meet the stylist beforehand, and I won't actually have that much time with him, so I'm not hoping for any miracles. But I'm still pretty excited... 

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

the best soup in the world

is this Jerusalem artichoke soup. This is what you do:

  • Peal 500g of Jerusalem artichoke and 3-4 potatoes. 
  • Slice them and 2 garlic cloves up and fry in a pan with oil or butter
  • Add 1,5dl of white wine. I used a sweet Riesling because I love it and that's the only white wine we have in our house. Boil for a minute.
  • Add 0,5 l of water and 2 stock cubes. I used the vegetable kind, but I'm sure pretty much any would do
  • Boil for 1,5 min until soft
  • Use hand blender and blend until smooth
  • Add 3 dl of cream
  • Serve with parma ham you have dried in the oven (5-10 min on 150 degrees C) and some apple purée
  • Enjoy

I first had this exact combination on a new years eve about 10 years or so ago. I've loved it ever since, and it is such a luxury to eat. It's thick and creamy, have a combination of different textures, and the salty ham with the sweet and sour apples balances the earthy Jerusalem artichoke perfectly. Nom. 

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Wedding inspiration: the bouquet

Another theme where I had no idea where to start, but once I began browsing through Pinterest I came up with several sweet ideas, and somewhat of a vision. Seriously. Since I've never really have spent time dreaming of my wedding, I'm very open to everything and don't have any ideas set in stone, but I would have been totally useless if I didn't have internet and Pinterest in particular... 

Anyway. Here's what I like when it comes to bouquets!

Sweet, romantic and a bit big and wild

1, 2, 3

Or dramatic with lots of different structures and deep colors in contrast with white

4, 5, 6

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Hugo's favorite toy

He knows where we keep it. When he wants it (which is often) he goes to the drawer in the kitchen and points his nose to it. When we take it out he becomes super attentive and jumps to get it. And once he does he will drag you with him until he's safe under the kitchen table. While growling, like a dog. The only time he does that sound. It's adorable.

A ball of orange fluff and two red feathers on a string. Brilliant. 

Friday, 22 January 2016

Wedding inspo: caaaaake!

Cake. Honestly not my favorite thing in the world. I'm more of a candy person, and although desserts and sweets are generally awesome, I didn't really know where to start when it came to deciding on wedding cake. We discussed flavor, of course, and neither of us wanted anything too sweet and heavy. We ended up suggesting passion fruit and white chocolate as taste-inspiration for our pastry chef.

When it comes to looks the amazing A didn't have a whole lot of opinions. I went looking on Pinterest for inspiration and came up with these ideas:

Maybe something romantic with loads of flowers and greenery, but a simple white base?

1, 2, 3
Or something minimalistic yet glamorous following our gold and white theme?

4, 5, 6

Now I'm just excited to see what they can come up with over at the pastry-shop based on these ideas...

Thursday, 21 January 2016

from this day forward, for better, for worse...

photo by Elsa Billgren

Me and Andreas, or the Amazing A as I like to call him here on the blog, have been together for 15 years. We first met in high school when we were 17, went to the same university, moved in together during our second year there and have lived together since. In Sweden, Germany and Norway. Marriage has never really been super important for any of us, I think we could have been together for the rest of our lives without ever getting hitched, but now circumstances have changed a bit and we had to make a decision (no, I'm not pregnant). Now all of a sudden getting married seems like a quite natural thing to do, and I'm really looking forward to it! A is my best friend, my family and an amazing person and I'm so happy that I found him.

We're getting married in February. Yup, pretty soon. And not much time to prepare the whole thing. Which in one way feels pretty good, as I've never had any big ideas on what I wanted. Now we just have to roll with it, do what feels right and make some pretty quick decisions without overthinking. I'm having way more fun planning than I thought, without becoming too much of a bridezilla. 

We're having our wedding ceremony in Gothenburg, with only our closest family attending. And then we'll celebrate with our friends the weekend after. We planned it like this because we started out thinking we wanted some pretty simple and thought it would make things easier, but in the end it just means we have to plan two events... Oh well, it will be fun! 

I'll let you know some of my ideas along the way, I will post about inspiration for my wedding dress, wedding hair and party decorations starting next week! 

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Botox, birthday and Joy.

Hello bloggy. Today has been a day in my life. Not an unusually good or bad day, but a pretty normal day. Except for three things:

1. I started the day with an appointment with my eye specialist and then a new eye doctor. Progress! It's now decided that I will have a Botox injection in one of my eyes to treat my cross eyedness. Finally a plan! Although a bit of a scary plan...

2. it's my dear moms birthday! Hip hip! Hope you had a good one, mom! 

3. I went and saw the movie Joy with my friend C. It was great. Inspiring, sad, fun and smart. Sometimes beautiful. Jennifer Lawrence is awesome.

Oh and I was wearing my power-Astrid t-shirt. That makes any day a bit special in my eyes. 

Tomorrow is Thursday, only two more days until the weekend, yaaay!

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

best nail-polish evah!

Remember how I have complained that I've had totally crappy nails for the past two years? You don't? Good, that means you have better things to fill your mind with and that just healthy. Anyway, here's the product that changed that.

I have it in both light purple (as pictured) and pearly white. Buy them. Makes your nails super hard, like a shield. 

I'm not sponsored, btw. I wish. 

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Wedding prep: DIY table decorations

I decided quite early on that I wanted gold and white as color scheme for our wedding party. Not that it felt really important, but a lot of things come in gold and I already had gold spray paint, so... The Amazing A supported the idea and so we started preparing. These were some of my inspiration early on! From my Pinteres (sources below each collage) 

1, 2 3, 4

When it comesto decorations and centerpieces I want to go mostly diy and second hand. I went on a thrift store shopping spree with my friend T, and brought home a bunch of brass candle holders, glass tea light holders and vases in clear glass and white porcelain. Some of these I'm going to use as they are, some I've painted or spray painted gold. The plan is to have a random look but with an cohesive overall theme.

Greenery is important and also tricky this time of year. I'm going to scavenge the forests around here for evergreens, and then add some bought flowers, like tulips, hydrangea, orchids or tulips, depending on what's available close to that day. All white. I'm also planing on adding some clean branches from our garden, maybe spray painted gold, but we'll see... Pinterest inspo:

Friday, 15 January 2016

Random Friday-thoughts on architecting

Hello from my office restroom!

Things I am thinking about today:

I prefer saying that "I work as an architect" instead of "I am an architect." Because my line of work doesn't define me as a person

I never want to be the boss of anyone. Except myself

It would be fun to become more proficient in 3D rendering. But it would also be great to feel more comfortable rendering by hand 

Do we spend more or less time on creative processes now that the drawing process is way more efficient than when architects did all drawing by hand? Or do we become limited by the knowledge of our tools? Or lack thereof? 

Thursday, 14 January 2016


Hello darling reader! Today is a big day. This, the text you are reading RIGHT NOW, is my 1.000 blog-post. It's pretty cool. I've been blogging on a off since 2010, and it's been fun. I love looking back at my posts, it is such a great diary, be it a well polished and discrete diary. I didn't start very fancy, and the pictures from back then have pretty bad quality, but it's fun to look back. I can see that I have improved, although my ambition still isn't super high.

selfie of 2010. So cute! 
My plans for this blog in 2016 is very unclear, depending on many things. It might grow, completely change subject, or continue pretty much the same. As it is now I just want to celebrate my one thousand post with a pat on my own back and a link to my first ever blog-post, where it all started!

Have a great day, peeps. XOXO

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

weekday veggie

Here's a recipe from last week when I played around a bit in the kitchen, trying out veggie-steaks for the first time!

Step 1: In the blender mix one can of (rinsed) cooked chick-peas with a few cloves of garlic, a dash of lemon zest, a bunch of fresh basil plus salt and pepper.

Step 2: Shape in to flat cakes and fry on medium temperature.

Step 3: Eat. Easy (chick) peasy!

I ate this with oven baked Brussels sprouts that I flavored with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and garlic.

It turned out a bit dry so I complemented with my standard cold sauce made of natural yogurt and sweet chili sauce, but otherwise it was pretty tasty!

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

New Years resolutions 2016

This year's resolutions will be trickier than usual. Many things are going on, and to be honest I'm not sure where I'll be at the end of 2016. But more on that another time. There are however a few general things I would like to focus on, plus a few very specific ones. I liked the format of last years New years resolutions, so I'll just continue the same way!

Three experiences I want to have during 2016
  • getting married
  • visit a country in Asia
  • go to Herräng Dance camp, again.
Three New skills I want to learn
  • how to sit in lotus position - Sukhasana, let's give that another shot!
  • learn the Tranky Do (an authentic jazz routine)!
  • learn how to tap! 
Three New habits to aim for
  • stop snoozing, let's give it another shot, too!
  • eat less meat. I don't think I'll ever be a true vegetarian, but I would like to keep reducing my meat intake. Imagine the impact on the environment if we viewed meat as a luxury item instead of something we eat everyday? I don't eat that much as it is now, but I'd like to become even more aware and explore more vegetarian options.
  • eat breakfast, regularly. 
Three health-related things I should do
  • figure out what to do with my cross-eyedness. This is becoming an ever more annoying issue
  • get my back back in order. I've had to take a break from Roller Derby because of my really crappy back. I need to get my shit together and work hard on the exercises by physiotherapists have given me. And maybe start doing yoga for real again. And go hiking. Although I think that's pretty boring. 
  • go on a checkup at a OB/GYN
Three fun things I want to do more often
  • read (actually read, not listen to) books. My addiction to audiobooks have only become more and more apparent over the years - I can't fall asleep without them and I can't stand for it to be quiet whenever I'm walking somewhere or doing any chores at home. But I've pretty much stopped reading "real" books. One of the reasons is that it makes my eyes hurt, but I also never take the time to just sit down and focus on one thing. This year I plan to read more and try more diverse types of books to broaden my horizons a bit. Maybe I should join a book club? 
  • dance lindy hop, blues and tap, at any given opportunity. 
  • go on walks with my friends. Such a good way of catching up and de-stressing.
Three creative things I want to start doing again in 2016
  • blog more! I actually think it's fun, but 2015 was a really lazy year, blog wise. I hope to remedy that in 2016. 
  • paint. Both with acrylic paint that I've tried quite a lot before, but also with water colors that I think is really tricky. Maybe also draw...
  • taking more pictures with my DSLR, and make photo-books and albums

Monday, 4 January 2016

I read: without you, there is no us

The mysterious North Korea has always fascinated me, although I don't know much about it. Well I guess most people know very little, but I have never tried to enlighten myself either. Until I picked up this book, by Suki Kim in a bookshop at Kastrup airport just before Christmas. I ended up finishing the morning of January 1st, and enjoyed most of the time I spent with it. Kim describes a period of time in 2011, when she worked as a teacher in a school for upper class North Korean boys, or rather young men. She also tells the story of her family and how they fled from South Korea to the US when she was thirteen. I must admit I liked the parts from the school best, it's so fascinating and surreal to read what these students believe of the rest of the world and their thought of their own lives. It's well written and thoughtful and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to know more of the worlds most secretive country.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Follow up - new year's resolutions of 2015

I like new year's resolutions. I'm typically one of those people who loves "a fresh start" and keep on saying "this Monday, that's when my new life will begin". Of course, equally typically I keep failing with keeping my resolutions, and I keep falling back into my bad habits (like hitting the snooze button for an hour, or eating chocolate for dinner) over and over again. But that's fine. I'm OK with that. But that's also why my new years resolutions are more focused on fun things and achievements. More of a to do list with thing I know I can actually accomplish. And now, let's see how that worked out for me during 2015!

Three new experiences I want to have during 2015

  • Go to Herräng Dance camp
    Yes I did that, and it was one of the best things I've ever done!
  • Go to a Metallica concert
    Nope, didn't even try actually. Tickets were sold out and I was busy that weekend... :(
  • Visit New York
    Nope, didn't happen! But I traveled a bit too much anyway, for dancing and Roller Derby. I visited Denmark, Portugal, Germany, England and of course Sweden this year. 

Three New skills I want to learn

  • how to sit in lotus position (Sukhasana)
    Nope. I ended up not doing a lot of yoga after all, my Roller Derby and dance traning took up too much time
  • master the derby stop (and honestly all of the other RD minimum skills)
    Yepp! There's a win! Not only did I complete my RD minimum skills, I played 5 bouts in total!
  • taking better pictures with my DSLR
    Eh, not really. I keep relying on my iPhone camera too much, and haven't really worked on that skill at all.

Three New habits to aim for

  • stop snoozing
    Started off good, ended in disaster. I snooze waaaaay too much. 
  • floss every now and then
    Eh, not really, I must admit. 
  • spend less money on unnecessary things
    I don't know. Maybe. I spend most of my money on traveling, as it is now. 

Three health-related things I should do

  • by new glasses, and contacts if possible
    Yes, I bough new glasses. Not sure they are so good for me though. Still need to contact my eye-doctor and come up with a real plan for my eyes.
  • go to the dentist, juts for a check up
    Did I? I don't remember... probably not. 
  • get at new "house-doctor", since my last one quit
    I settled on my default one, which is OK. I did get a new chiropractor and physiotherapist since my back has been a total mess the last 3 months of 2015.

Three fun things I want to do more often

  • read (actually read, not listen to) books
    No. Not many, at least.
  • invite friends home
    Maybe a bit better than previous years...
  • play with the cats
    I have cuddled a lot with them, could definitely play more with them.

To be honest, it doesn't really seem like I was successful on that many of my goals for 2015. I think I will have to transfer some of these items on my list for this year! However, the past year has been one of the more fun ones in a long time, with a lot of dancing - which I grew to really love, a lot of Roller Derby - which I've since had to take a break from due to back pain, and a pretty good year at work. I'm also as happy as ever together with my now fiancé, the Amazing A! So all in all, I want to call this one of my favorite years so far. Mostly ups, only a few downs, at least on a personal level.

When it comes to a global level many things have sucked so bad. Intolerance, terror and egoism keeps scaring me and I hope to see less of that in 2016. Fingers crossed...

Friday, 1 January 2016

December 2015

Happy new year! Long time no blog, again. My blogging comes and goes in waves, these days. This time my time off has been mostly because I've been busy doing stuff and not really feeling like blogging about it. But now that I have some spare time and things are getting more settled I'm back in business. Before diving into all things new and shiny about 2016 I just want to summarize the final month of 2015, a month when I didn't blog at all...  Here's a few snippets from my December!, from my iPhone!

the only seasonal decoration in our house this year. Hyacinths and a few candles

It was dark, almost all the time.

I dressed up as a christmas tree for a social dance, and bought new glasses
celebrating Christmas at my mom's house, with a bunch of gifts, as usual

We got engaged!! Actually we got engaged November 5th, but only revealed it in December...

and finished off by winning the Couple of the year award at our friend T's new years party