Sunshine at last!

Yay! It’s finally stopped raining! As you might of heard, we’ve been getting some serious rain action on the East Coast of Australia lately. But today the sun has come out. So I think I’m going to introduce something new to this blog (which I’ve been hankering to introduce for a few days now…)  My plants!

But before I do, here is a beautiful pic I took in Finland not long ago. We were having a wonderful family picnic at the time, and the sea was dazzling. Oh, and the air was non-humid and fresh. You know, in that Scandinavian way. I like the sunshiney-ness of this photo. (How about that: an Australian swooning over the sunshine in Helsinki. That’s how much it’s been raining!!)

Helsinki in summer, looking out over the Gulf of Finland... so twinkly!

OK, so now to my little plants. They’re very exciting! That might sound crazy but wait until you hear what I’m on about. A few months ago, I was reading up about Raw Food in that Sun Food Diet Success System book by David Wolfe (very interesting by the way) and I had a Big Idea from out of nowhere. Why don’t I plant a few Goji Berries? So I did. I haven’t seen a Goji tree for sale anywhere in any Australian nursery, so I thought I should definitely give it a go. Here’s how it went:

Goji berries come to life!

This was taken on December 22. I transplanted a few bundles of Goji seedlings into separate pots because they were rapidly outgrowing the seedling tray. I did this with a little teapsoon but it was quite difficult actually separating the plants because they’re roots were all interwoven. Still, they seem to have survived:

Goji seedlings in their expansive new home

I’ll keep you posted on the Gojis. I hope they grow into strong trees because Goji berries are pretty good for you, so I’ve heard! I like to eat them, anyway. Also, can you see this pot sitting in water? That’s how much rain we’ve been getting. Not even enough time to get out and tip the water before more arrives. Here are some more pics of my gardening adventures (carried out on my ultra small balcony, I’m afraid).

I like to use Eden seeds where I can because they have a good organic range

And just a short while later…

The Rocket rears it's head! Yay Rocket!

They’re tiny, but can you see those robust little rocket shoots poking through the earth?

and most of the seedlings take off!

The Lebanese Cucumbers were definitely the over-achievers of the group and I quickly had to move them to a larger pot. I put stakes in, because they climb, and I used some wired Christmas ribbon to make the tops of the stakes ultra visible. I call them my Anti-Eye-Poked-Out safety devices. (Have you ever bent down to a pot and nearly collected a stake in your eye? You’ll know what I mean.)

Lebanese cucumber on my balcony, just seedlings

More gardening updates soon. I can’t spend too much more time on this blog this morning because I sense clouds coming over again and I want to get outside while I can! I’m going to leave you with a bit more colour: some locals who came to visit me on my balcony a few days ago…. bye for now! x

These two Rainbow Lorikeets came in to say hello...

...and to give each other a bit of grooming in those hard-to-reach places!

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Filed under Finland, Gardening, Nature, Photography

colour inspiration and joy-creation, by iittala

Because my blog is only in its early days, I have a confession to make before we go any further. I think I’m addicted to Scandinavian homewares. Not all of them, of course. Just the scrumptious ones. And I have a particularly scrumptious set of bowls in my kitchen cupboard that bring me absolute joy whenever I use — or see — them.

I can’t wait any longer to show them to you, so here they are:

my lovely iittala origo bowls... just look at that colour!

And here are some close up shots, just because they’re so gorgeous:

orange, blue, turquoise, white... so yummy and fresh

this is my other favourite colour combo... all those reds!

Phew. Glad I got THAT out of my system. I’ve been dying to share my bowls with you for days. I find that the colours are so bright and happy. (Oh by the way, iittala bowls are made in Finland and they do a lot more than bowls. Do some naughty online shopping here: www.iittala.com)  They may cost a bit extra than regular bowls but they are very much worth it. Especially when you have to get up early on the days when you don’t really feel like it. On those days, you can be sure to feel a whole lot better about the world as soon as your bleary morning eyes lock on to those glorious stripes of colour. Thank you, iittala origo bowl designer. I know there’s more to life than material possessions, but these bowls definitely give off a warm and uplifting glow!

I’m no expert, but I have heard that the Nordic Peoples love their colour. After all, in Finland they don’t call it “Winter”. They call it “The Darkness”. So you’d want to be stocking up on some fairly colourful bits’n’bobs to furnish your nest with, I imagine. What a brilliant idea!

Righty-o, time for bed. I’ve put up two posts today, which may be a bit excessive, but I’m just getting the hang of blogging and I love it! I hope you enjoyed my little introduction to the world of iittala bowls, if you didn’t already know about them. And if you did… I’m sure you understand. Nighty-night. x

ps tomorrow I think it’s time we step outside — even if it’s still raining — and I can bring you up-to-date with my seedlings. Wait until you see what I’m growing!

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Filed under Colour, Finland, Home

Finnish summer flowers

Happy New Year to everyone following my blog. At this stage I think that number is One (thanks sis) but not to worry… it’s good to have the chance to find my Blog Feet without a lot of people watching! I have so many ideas for what I would like this blog to do… but the main aim is to inspire other people and make them feel joy.

So, on the subject of Joy, let me share something Nordic-ly Wonderful with you.

Flowers. I took this pic on my last trip to Finland, at the family home of my brother-in-law. His mum had picked these flowers from the garden and just put them in a big old jar. That’s something I really love about Nordic countries: their winters are so cold and dark that summer is just like one big celebration of nature. My experience has been that Flowers are Big. And I completely understand! Flowers are beautiful at any time, but when your outdoors are covered in snow for several months… summer flowers are just wonderful.

Helsinki summer flowers

The flowers are so delicate! I find that the Australian sun is so hot that our plants have to be a little more hardy. Here’s a particularly robust little specimen from a pot on my balcony, just after a storm.

after a big storm

Oh, I just remembered something very Scandinavian about that plant above… I bought it from IKEA! It’s total serendipity! :  )

Blooms in their natural state, Helsinki

 

back garden lovelies, Helsinki

Geraniums are very big on windowsills over in Finland and you can see why. Their colour is amazing. This one was taken in the back garden, with Summer Nature in full swing. There was also another precious little find in the same garden…

 

My little niece testing out the summer grass

My niece! What a little cutie. Just getting to know the glorious feeling of Feet in Grass. This pic was taken last year, so she’s a bit older now, but no less of a cutie-pie.

Well, that’s all for this morning on flowers and grass and little nieces. I could go on and on about flowers but I’ll save that for another time. I can feel a crochet update coming on soon, so stay tuned. And I plan to bring you lots more Wonderful things about Scandinavia, too. Bye for now xx

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Filed under Finland, Flowers, Gardening

Scandinavian-inspired cosiness

As you know, I’ve been bursting with blog ideas for a few weeks, so I have to track back a bit now and fill you in on what I’ve been up to. Crochet has been big in my world. After discovering the Wonderful ‘Attic24’ blog by Lucy, I’ve been soooo inspired to crochet that I decided to make a rug to give my 2-year-old niece for Christmas. Said rug has now been successfully delivered (pics of that exciting moment to come!) but I was documenting the whole thing along the way, and here are a few work-in-progress pics… (oh and if you’re wondering what crochet has to do with Scandinavia, I tend to think that Cosiness=Winter in Somewhere Cold. Like Finland, Norway, Denmark or Sweden. And crochet definitely = cosiness. So there you go!)

One of mum's old coffee mugs plus the Granny Square Blanket before it was all sewn up

Also, while I was in Crochet Land, we happened to have a particularly exciting storm in the neighbourhood. I love storms. Especially those wild electrical ones. Of course, I wouldn’t want to be on the wrong end of a bolt of lightning, but they definitely add a bit of high action to the day.

Just one of the local storms we have at this time of year

The rain was incredibly pounding, but when the sun came out afterwards, it was magic.

Storm in full swing

Absolutely perfect weather for a bit of crochet

And the sun breaks through the cloud and the world rejoices!

Look at my gorgeous aloe vera, it is just LOVING the sunshine!

That’s all for now. I have one or two more post-storm pics that I’d love to share with you, but boyfriend O just arrived home with hot chicken dinner so they’ll have to wait until next time! See you then! x

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Filed under Crochet, Nature, Uncategorized

Hello and Welcome to my little Scandinavian-inspired blog.

Phew. What a relief it is to get this blog up and running. I seem to have developed a nasty case of Blog Backlog over the past few weeks. Ever since I decided to start a blog, my head has been bursting with blogacious ideas. Loads of them. Luckily I have a trusty notebook and I’ve been writing ideas down… but nothing’s quite the same as The Real Blog.

(I’m going to continue this entry, but right now I have to have breakfast.)

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