Friday, 27 May 2016

follow the adventure

don't forget my Brunei-dedicated blog: Come on, let's go where I write and update about our move to Brunei.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Good bye, garden.

I've been spending this morning cleaning and temporarily emptying the house in preparation for the photographer coming to document our home for the "for rent" add. The cats (and me) seem to be stuck here for at least another week, so I will have to move some stuff back in, but for now it's echoing empty. I've even had time to clean up in the garden, which was way more fun. I don't think the fact that we are leaving this house has really struck me until I removed dead leaves around this tiny recovering hydrangea thinking "I wonder if I will ever see this little fellow grow up? Will the tenants like our garden and take care of it?"

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

shoes i love right now

For obvious reasons I look a lot at summer shoes at this point. And dance shoes... I'm not sure what type of shoes I will like to use when we are actually in Brunei, with the heat and humidity, but at this point I'm just happy I wont have to wear socks or tights... here are a few types of shoes that I'm dreaming about right now!

I love to dance in these and already have a black pair, they are a bit more comfortable than Converse and also good for just normal use. They come in a huge variety of styles, although I prefer this traditional lace-up one, and many fun colors and patterns. inexpensive but of good quality!
found here
found here

Saint Savoy
Expensive but worth it! More dance shoes, although this is for dancing (in door) only, due to the not very durable leather sole. I have a pair of the model West in red, and now I'm dreaming of a pair of Rivieras in blue or green... 

found here
found here

Swedish Hasbeen
I love these vintage styles clogs! I want almost every single one of them! I've been having my eyes on for these two styles for a while though. I already own two pair of clogs in tan so colorful ones would be fun.
found here
found here

Miss L-fire
I just discovered this brand at a local shop here in Stavanger. So. Many. Pretty. Shoes.... I have a huge crush on these Loretta heels in green!
found here

leather sandals
Not too many straps. Flat. Leather. That's how I'd like my sandals please.

found here

Cat shoes
Heels or flats with cats on them have been trending on various online shops for a while now, and I can't resist the cuteness...

found here

Vintage style flats
Girly, light and summer-y. There are so many pretty shoes in this style, that would look great with my summer dresses or ankle length trousers.  
found here
found here
Yeah, so I have EUR size 39, if anyone want to know! Or 38,5...  

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

New in an old way

Since I started dancing I listen to swing music more than I listen to "regular" music. But every now and then it's nice to hear some modern tunes. A lovely combination of the two worlds are Post Modern Jukebox, my new favorite band, that plays covers of modern hits but in swing-style. They actually played live in Stavanger a few weeks back but me and my friends missed it because we confused the dates, soooo frustrating...

Monday, 23 May 2016

New eye-wear

After a visit to my eye doctor a few months back when we could conclude that the Botox I got in one of my eyes to get rid of my cross-eyedness hadn't worked, we decided that I should just get new glasses with a stronger (?) prism, and that this would hopefully help a bit. Annoying that the Botox didn't work, but what can you do. So, here they are, my new ones! They are of the brand Vasuma, I think the model is called Eggeater (?) and they are in rose gold. It was love at first sight (höhö) and I felt really good about them from the start. 

I've been wanting glasses with a pilot look for a while, and after seeing Sandra of the blog Atilio wearing her silver ones I was even more sure about the choice. Not only does Sandra has one of my favorite blogs right now, she also beautiful, and even though she doesn't wear her glasses in photos much, I think she could, because they are awesome. 

Another looks-related thing: I'm wearing my hair parted in the middle a lot these days. I used to hate how it looks but for some reason I think it works now. I mean I do look a little bit like a young Taylor Hanson, but I don't know. Maybe that's my new thing. 

Oh, and while on the subject of looking like someone and my new glasses. I wore them when me and my friend Steve went for a beer at the local Irish pub on Saturday and the bartender couldn't get over the fact that these were my real glasses, that I would wear everyday. She though I look "Breaking Bad" in them... not sure what to make of that comment, other than that I apparently look like this:

Oh well! Could have been worse!

Sorry again for the continuous use of iPhone photos in my blog. When I'm settled down in Brunei with a proper desk I will start using my camera plus lightroom more frequently and the quality will hopefully improve. 

Thursday, 19 May 2016

it's my birthday

Today I was thoroughly celebrated by my friends here in Stavanger, got phone calls and texts from my family in Sweden, a bunch of sweet greetings on Facebook, plus a surprise a delivery from my beloved husband in Brunei. Turning 33 feels pretty good, even though I'm in a weird situation with no real home at the moment. Luckily I have real friends, and people that makes me happy in my life!

Emma made one of my favorite dishes - haloumi burgers - and told me to invite my friends for dinner!

I played Cards against humanity with these gorgeous girls and laughed until my face hurt

Happy wife with a huge bouquet of roses and in a dress from husband.

 Yep, seriously spoiled with gift certificates, roses, chocolate, home made cards, bubbles, tap shoes (!) ear rings and a cardigan courtesy of  mom. Thank you everyone! 

the last dance

another good thing about being stuck in Stavanger is that I got the chance to take part in a dance event that me and my fellow dance friends in Stavanger Swingcats organized this year. Step off the Edge 2016! We invited three teachers from Stockholm, London and Stuttgart to teach classes during the weekend workshop, together with our local teachers (two of the best people I know) Steve and Alison. This event included - at least for me - private tap class and informal social dance on Friday, 4 classes in tap, lindy and solo jazz plus fancy social dance on Saturday, 4 classes plus relaxing on Sunday, hiking to Preikestolen plus lindy class and informal tap class on Monday. And then we had the champagne breakfast on Tuesday that was 17th of may. It was an intense and awesome weekend that I got to spend with some of my favorite people plus some new ones, while dancing until my feet hurt.

I miss Andreas a lot, but I'm still really glad I didn't miss out on this weekend!

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

The loooong farewell

Of course I would rather be in Brunei with Andreas. It's a given. I miss him. But there are a few good things about being left here in Stavanger too, and right now I try to focus on them.

I felt a bit rushed when the date for the move suddenly was decided, but now that I had to stay behind with the cats I get to have a slower transition, that I think is good for me. I get to spend some extra time with my friends. I get to fix all of those little projects in the house that we never had time for before. And I get to say goodbye to Stavanger.
I think I've felt pretty done with this city for a few years. It was only the people here that made it worth staying. And our little house, of course. But the city in itself? Not that exciting anymore. But now as I have the time to walk around it, especially in the beautiful weather we've had this past week, I start feeling nostalgic. I realize that I won't come back here for who knows how long, and I try to memorize my favorite spots. I go in to all of my favorite shops and coffee houses. I eat at my favorite restaurants with my friends. And snap gazillions of photos with my phone. 

Waking through Gamle Stavanger, the old part of town, on my way home to one of my best friends, Steve, apartment. I've walked here a lot this past year, on my way to a dinner, a tap practice session or a party. It's one of the prettiest parts of town.

Monday, 9 May 2016


My number one favorite TV-series all categories is Buffy the vampire slayer. I usually re-watch the series from start to finish every three years or so, saving it for a period when I know I'll have lots of time by myself to just indulge. Now it's been a while though, but I recently had the inspiration to watch again after listening to the Swedish podcast Buffypodden. I thought I could resist and just listen to the pod - in it they discuss all of the episodes, starting from season 1, but when they were talking about seasons two episodes Surprise and Innocence I couldn't resist anymore because the fabulousness that is Buffyverse sucked me in.

Being stuck here in Stavanger with no job and a lot of time on my hands of course provided me with an excellent opportunity to relive the magic of Sunnydale. I've watched 5 full seasons in about 4 weeks. That's ca 100 episodes. I actually skipped the first season because... It's not as good as the rest. My record is 15 episodes in a day.

Unfortunately season 5-7 gets pretty dark and as I get more stressed about being here and at the same time more aware that my time with my friends is coming to an end the sadness in the show gets to me more and more. But that always happens, anyway. Oh well. Tv is beautiful. 

Sunny days

Weirdly, this is not a photo from Brunei... I'm still in Norway, but summer came! I didn't think I would get to experience it here in Stavanger this year, but I did! At least for a few days, or for as long as it will last this time. This Sunday I spent working in the garden, making it pretty for when we're renting it out, then I went with my friend Tuulikki and some other nice people to a beach outside of town, and in the evening I had an impromptu barbecue with two other friends in our backyard. That's what happens when you get 24 degree Celsius in Norway early in May. You try to squeeze every summery thing you can into one day, because who knows when you'll ever get the chance again?

I guess that approach will change when I've moved to Brunei... Until then, I'll just pretend I have summer holidays here. Not so bad when Stavanger looks like Spain, or something. 

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Emma's kitchen

In staying at my friend Emma's house while we wait to get the cats travel arrangements in order. One great thing about Emma - except the fact that she's letting me stay in her guest room indefinitely- is that she is an awesome cook. We've been eating dinner together here several times since i came here and every time she amazes me with what she comes up with. With various ingredients from her kitchen she throws something super tasty together, that seems to be pure improvisation, but which more likely is based on experience...

Like this curry salmon with rise and a root vegetable sallad

or fresh pasta with avocado and tomatoes in a wild garlic sauce

Emma definitely inspires me to cook more and try out more fun ingredients, maybe once I'm in Brunei and have a kitchen of my own again I can start actually enjoy cooking!