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Senja, 20 years old, Helsinki/Finland
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Friday, March 22, 2013

Oatmeal cookies

Last Sunday I posted a picture of oatmeal cookies on my instagram. My cousins had made them with my aunt, and Kelly, who writes a lovely blog called 'the Dutch Dauphine' asked if I could post the recipe on my blog. In Finland these cookies are quite popular, as they are incredibly easy and quick to make. At least in my family we have been making them quite often.

This recipe isn't necessarily the one my aunt used, but my mother uses this one, as do I when I make oatmeal cookies. My aunt and cousins decorated them with chocolate icing but that's entirely optional.

Oatmeal cookies

(good for 30 cookies)

50 grams (3,5 table spoonfuls) of butter (margarin works too)
2 dl (0,85 cups) of rolled oats
1 table spoonful of wheat flour
1 tea spoonful of baking powder
1 dl (0,425 cups) of sugar
1 egg

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees celsius. (392 degrees Fahrenheit)
2. Melt the butter in a pan.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pan and mix them with a wooden fork.
4. With two spoons make small round dough balls and lay them on a sheet of baking paper.
Make sure to leave about 10 cm (~4 inches) in between the balls.
5. Place the baking paper on an oven plate and let the cookies stay in the upper department of the oven for about 5 minutes.

(genoeg voor 30 koekjes)

50 gram roomboter (margarine is ook goed)
2 dl havermout
1 eetlepel tarwebloem
1 theelepel bakpoeder
1 dl suiker
1 ei

1. Verwarm de oven voor op 200 graden Celsius.
2. Smelt de boter in een pan.
3. Voeg de rest van de ingrediënten toe aan de boter en roer deze meet een houten vork.
4. Maak ronde balletjes deeg met twee lepels en leg ze op bakpapier. 
Zorg dat er ongeveer 10 cm tussen de balletjes zit.
5. Plaats het bakpapier op een ovenplaat en leg ze boven in de oven voor een minuut of 5.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Laughter and smiles

I rarely post smiling or laughing pictures of myself, not because I don't laugh or smile on a general basis, but because it doesn't come naturally to me to laugh or smile while taking outfit pictures. I don't know why, perhaps it's because the camera makes me quite self-conscious. Catching my genuine smiles on the camera doesn't happen often, but yesterday I was laughing so hard while Trang was taking my pictures that I couldn't help it. It was only too bad that the settings on my camera were a little off so the pictures came out extremely noisy and not very sharp.

Curly hair is also something you don't see very often on me. I'm extremely bad (not to mention lazy!) at doing my hair but these curls were quite simple and easy. After showering and washing my hair I turned a high ponytail into two braids and made a knot of them. I let the braided bun stay like that for almost 24 hours and the next day I had curls. In the pictures the curls have gotten a little loose already, as these were taken in the afternoon.

The skirt I bought from Trang's sister Thao as it didn't fit her properly. For me it's the perfect fit and I'll try to get better pictures of it soon. These don't do much justice.

Even if my pictures are always more or less serious, I have been quite happy lately. Today I signed the lease on my new apartment, and I am moving in less than two weeks.. and tomorrow I'll be starting work. Things are definitely moving forward. So in that sense, the title of the post is more than suitable.

How has your week been?

See how I matched these items before:
Shirt and shoes: Flowers in the hall

Monday, March 18, 2013

It's not just old ladies who knit

Knitted sweater, H&M print pants, the Cambridge satchel company batchel, outfit

DIY knitted pullover

DIY knitted pullover, H&M print pants

Perhaps some of you remember that I have been knitting a lot during the past six months. Those who don't, well, I love knitting. I learnt to knit when I was about 8 years old and I have been knitting on and off ever since. I started knitting again last September and the pullover in the pictures is the end result.

I must say, I'm extremely proud of myself. Last time it took me over a year to finish a scarf (that ended up being way too wide so I made it an almost perfect square) and I still haven't finished the pair of socks I've been knitting for D. (one sock is almost done, one more to go) This time, it took me about six months to finish the pullover. I didn't knit all the time and there were periods of time when I was knitting other things but in the end, I finished it. Definitely makes me appreciate all those pullovers my grandmother has made me.

The pullover is truly perfect for these cold days. It's 100% wool, no synthetic fibres and it's obvious. It's so warm and soft, it doesn't itch and while it's warm enough to keep me from freezing in -15 degrees, it doesn't get too warm indoors either. I'll definitely be bringing this to NL next time I visit, finally a pullover to last me through those winds. The only downside is the fluffiness of the wool.

I love the look of the pullover too. I chose a more lively yarn on purpose, because this being the first pullover I have ever knitted, there were bound to be some minor mistakes and thanks to the yarn, it's not that visible. The model of the pullover is actually meant for men, but I wanted it to hang a little lose and add some laid-back fishermen sort of vibe to my wardrobe. I can combine the pullover with pretty much anything from dresses and skirts to jogging pants and it looks great.

The pullover required almost 6 balls of yarn (each 100 grams) so it cost me about 80 euros in total. (excluding the pins) Can't know for certain but I think that in total I spent well over 50 hours knitting. It was a lot of work and a lot time but the result is a quality pullover that should last for years to come. Not to sound too devout but it did teach me the value of handmade garments and traditional skills. A well-made piece of clothing that has been made using high quality materials does cost you more but you won't be disappointed. Clothes should be an investment and you should pay more attention the quality than what it says on the label.

Quality over quantity.

Other related posts:

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Interior decor ideas: living and sleeping area

Interior decor ideas for a combined living and sleeping area
4. H&M, 5. H&M 6. H&M, 7. H&M, 8. H&M , 9. Ikea
10. Ikea, 11., 12. Ikea, 13. Ikea, 14. Ikea

In my previous post I announced the exciting news about my new apartment. I also warned you that there will be a lot of interior decorating on my blog and here we have the first interior decorating themed post of all the posts to come.

As I'm not rich and my parents won't be decorating my apartment, I will have to get most of the furniture second-hand. Luckily my aunt and her boyfriend are moving out of their apartment, back to my grandparents for some time, until they can find another small apartment to suit their needs, so I will be getting some things from them, at least for the time being. I also already have some things that might come in hand. D is happy to purchase things too, as he will be benefitting from them as well when he moves to Finland.

The lamp on my inspiration board resembles a lot the ceiling lamp I already have. I had it in my old room at my parent's place and when I moved to my grandparents' two years ago, I brought it with me. So I will definitely have a round lace ceiling lamp in my apartment.

D and I can't agree on a bed. As my apartment is only a little over 3 meters (about 9 feet 10764 inches) wide, I don't want a huge double bed to take over the entire living area. A sofa bed would be the most logical choice, since some seating would be useful for when I invite people over. However, sofa beds aren't the most comfortable beds available so we have been considering getting a real double bed. I'd be happy with 140x200cm (standard double size bed) but D thinks that it's too small. He wants a 160x200 cm (queen size) bed. Mind you, neither of us is really that wide so I don't get the point. According to D, a 20 cm (about 8 inches) difference won't be the end of the world but in a small apartment, 20 cm might result in not being able to place anything on the opposite side of the room because there would be no space to walk around. But if in the end we manage to agree on a bed, we will probably get a cute headboard wall decal like the one in the picture. Real iron frame beds are quite expensive so I love the idea, even if I say so myself.

I actually already own the bed sheets in the picture, D and I got them as a Christmas present from my grandparents.

Pillows are such an easy and inexpensive way to spice up the room. As long as I'll be living on my own for the most part, I'll definitely be creating a more feminine feel to my home with pink, sequins, sparkle, lace and what not. My home is supposed to represent my style and until D moves in, or we move to a different place together, I won't be hiding my love for all things pink and sparkly.

As you know, I love knitting, and as soon as I'm done with all my other projects, I might knit (or even learn to crochet!) a blanket like the one in the picture.

I'm so happy that my aunt loves mirrors as much as I do. I had been considering buying the big Ikea mirror either new or second-hand but as it turns out, my aunt has the same one and she is very happy to let me have it for the time being. Saves me money and saves them (and my grandparents) storage space. It's a win-win situation for everyone.

Usually I like sleeping in dark rooms so dark curtains would seem like an obvious choice but dark and heavy curtains would make my apartment look so much smaller. There's only one (big) window so light curtains are the smartest choice. The lace curtains in the picture are from Ikea but my mum might have simple white curtains hanging around somewhere. At least in the beginning I'm happy to accept any donations to save my little money. I'll upgrade when my budget allows me to.

My parents have an old dining table, much like the one in the picture, stored somewhere and I'll be getting that one. It's a nice table and it should match the wooden floors quite well.

Not sure how smart it is for me to get any real plants, as I tend to forget to water them, but I think I'll manage one or two plants. I'm also thinking of growing my own herbs, and the cute little greenhouse from Ikea would be perfect. Of course, it's not the first thing on my list, but it's cute.

I will be getting two chairs matching the dining table and that's about the amount I need on a daily basis, but for when I have guests, some fold-up chairs would be nice. These chairs from Ikea are quite price-y for my budget at the moment but perhaps I can find them second-hand. (on a side note, I hate how messily I added the picture to the board... but can't be bothered to fix it anymore)

Fairy lights are such a cliche at the moment, considering the amount of fairy light pictures I can find on weheartit and the like but I'll risk being cliche because I think they are so cute. I might feel different in a few years but who cares!

Among other things I'll be getting from my aunt, is a bean bag chair. The one I'll be getting (or holding for them) is not as dark as this one though, it's more of a light-brown colour. Not the most comfy choice of seating, but it saves me from having to buy a sofa chair or something like that, and it's better than sitting on the floor.

A lot of mix and match, just like the clothes I wear, but I'll take the challenge gladly. Getting everything right away would be a little boring, now I'm forced to use my imagination and creativity. The bed is the only problem at the moment, but if I can't come up with anything else, my aunt has a bed that should last me until D comes to Finland and we can go bed shopping. (I already feel sorry for the salespeople at Ikea or wherever we head for mattresses and such)

Can you tell I've been nesting ever since I heard the news?

Friday, March 15, 2013

Let the adventure begin

Holly Golightly's apartment Breakfast at Tiffany's

Holly Golightly's kitchen drinking milk from a champagne glass in Breakfast at Tiffany's

Holly Golightly's vanity table Breakfast at Tiffany's
picture credit:

Last time I wrote a more personal post was when things weren't working out the way I would've liked. This time however, it seems like I have finally found the right path and good things are coming my way. First of all, I got a job! Sure, it's a part-time cashiering job but it's a start and a possibility to set my own schedule. Then, the most incredible thing happened.

I am moving to my own little shoebox apartment in the beginning of next month. Less than three weeks to go.

My future home might be small and not situated in the city centre but I don't think a penthouse in an old 1910s building could make me happier than my little shoebox does. Got to start somewhere and at this stage of my life, a little studio apartment is all I need.

The thought of living on my own is very exciting. My initial reaction to the news was pure joy but soon it was changed to freaking out. Change is always a little scary and I've been worried about everything from beds to finances. Now I'm getting excited again and I've been browsing IKEA catalogue and such almost non-stop. You can expect a lot of interior decorating themed posts in the near future.

As good as this all is, the timing isn't the best. I should be putting all my time and energy into studying for my entrance exams but with all this excitement and meetings and training I've been doing for my job, I have barely opened my study book this week. Definitely not good as I need to know the book and the other study material by heart by early June, preferably earlier. Last year only 10-11% of the people who took the entrance exam got accepted. The pressure is on, but I'm ready to face it. Unlike last year, I'm actually motivated to do my best.

Why Breakfast at Tiffany's? Other than the fact that it's my favourite movie, I somehow feel like my own little Breakfast at Tiffany's adventure is starting to happen. Sans the call-girl looking for a rich husband part, and I'm afraid I won't get a cat. I'm no runaway teenage bride either. (and D isn't a kept man) But I will be looking for my own place in the world, trying to make the ends meet, dreaming of a place where I will feel safe. (not to mention that my little apartment will probably filled with mix and match thrift-store finds and hand-me-downs just like Holly's is) Too bad there's no Tiffany & Co store in Helsinki. However, I will drink milk from a champagne glass.

So there's the reason why it's been a little quiet on my blog. Big changes require a lot of processing but now my head is a little lighter again and I can get back to blogging and cramming for the exams. Good news for a change.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Checkers and tulips

Men's shirt with a tulip skirt

Men's shirt with a tulip skirt

A funny thing about this outfit: only the shoes were bought by me. The rest is donations and borrowed. This sort of mix and match is very dear to me, I get to use my imagination.

I wore the outfit to a job interview on Tuesday and while my mother thinks the skirt is too short, I thought it was doable with the otherwise prim look. The shirt is actually my brother's, he was kind enough to borrow it to me when I couldn't find anything to wear.

The skirt I got from Trang. Orange isn't really my colour but combined with other colours it's not too bad. I think I pulled it off rather nicely.

This week my life has been all about reading and stuffing my face with candy. Okay, I did have the job interview on Tuesday, and I'm quite hopeful about it, but other than that, losing my public transportation card has been the most remarkable event this week. Luckily that's about to change because today I'll be going to town to get a new transportation card, and to buy the new expansion pack for the Sims 3... and I'll be meeting Maria for a coffee too! Tomorrow I get to spend the whole day with my littlest brother and it should be fun because he isn't sick this time. A trip to the library is in order perhaps... and the playground too, depending on the weather.

How has your week been?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

What's in my make-up bag?

I love doing my make-up. It's so much fun to accentuate the good features and hide the not-so-good. However I can go outdoors and see my friends without feeling the need to do my make-up. I have no problem posting make-up free pictures of myself here on my blog. Make-up makes me feel prettier and more confident but some days I couldn't care less about it.

When I buy make-up I tend to buy things recommended to me by friends or by other bloggers. Make-up can be so expensive at times and if the product doesn't prove to be worth the money... well, I'll get extremely annoyed. So I try to stick to products others have tested for me, even though I still wind up disappointed every now and then. Things that work for others might not work for me.

I've always had a love-hate relationship with foundation. Usually they are the wrong shade, they feel too caked on the skin, they aren't good for my skin etc.  Currently I'm using Diorskin Nude by Dior in the lightest shade (Ivory 010) and it's pretty much the perfect match to my own skin tone. I'll probably stick to this one for the rest of my life. (or at least as long as they manufacture it) I also use a highlighter/concealer, my current one is True Match Touche Magique by L'Oreal. I got it as a freebie from somewhere and I've been using it even though it isn't the perfect shade for me. It's a tad too yellow but it's doable. We'll see which one I get once this one is finished.

I'm not as picky with my mascaras as I'm with foundation etc. I got the Extra Super Lash Mascara by Rimmel as a freebie and I could actually consider buying it when I need a new mascara. The Chanel mascara I got from Trang, because it's brown and not water-proof. I quite like it though, it's perfect for those natural looks. A lash curler is a must for me, otherwise my lashes will stick to my glasses.

Considering that I love eyeliners, I haven't invested much in proper eye-liner products. I have tried so many eyeliners: liquid, gel and what not, yet I haven't found the perfect one. My current liquid eyeliner is from Primark and I got it as a Sinterklaas gift. It works surprisingly well, it's easy to apply but it gets a little dry and cake-y. Luckily it doesn't flake as bad as many other products I have tried. The black kohl pencil is by BeYu, a cheap German make-up brand. It's not too bad, even though it does smudge a little. I also use a white kohl pencil by We Care Icon, which is a Finnish household brand for one of the biggest Finnish department stores. It works well enough and it was quite cheap. Nothing extraordinary.

Ever since I learnt to do my make-up somewhat properly, I've been a fan of subtle eyeshadows. For a long time I kept on switching brands, looking for the perfect one until D got me the Naked 2 palette by Urban Decay. I truly love it, except for a couple shades and I can't imagine how I did without it.

I love Dior lipsticks and I would love to get more of them. I usually start by applying some vaseline (brand doesn't matter) and then I apply lipliner (also by Dior) and then lipstick. My go-to lipstick is Rouge Dior in Ara Red (999) but when I want to get a little more vampy look, I choose for the Dior Addict Extreme in Sunset Boulevard (829). I'm dying to get a lovely pink shade for spring and summer and I'd love to get the infamous Dior Addict lip glow.

Finally, there's my only perfume. I'm not a perfume-lover, as scents give me migraine but I got a sample of Nuit Pour Femme by Hugo Boss at the Vogue Fashion's Night Out in Amsterdam and I found myself liking it a lot. I actually liked it so much that I decided to buy it too! So whenever I go out of the house or even when I just feel like I want to be more glamorous, I add a whiff of the perfume.

Of course I have some other tidbits in my make-up bag but these are the products I mostly use. This post was not sponsored by anyone (I can only dream of being sponsored by Dior... that's the stuff dreams are made of!) and I am only sharing the links so you can find out a little more about the products in case you get curious.

What's in your make-up bag and are there any products you'd recommend to me?

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