Monday, October 5, 2015

In September

  • Jake bought a new sound system for the living room. It sounds good!
  • We also got two glass display cases for the living room. I looove them. But now I’ll have to figure out how to decorate them. Yellow picture, because night.
  • My work ended on the 29th. Back to being time rich and money poor. As a parting gift I got these sweet mugs.
  • We spend most nights playing Metal Gear Solid 5. It was long awaited, but we were both a bit disappointed. The plot just wasn’t that good.
  • Jake bought me a lightsaber. Yep.
  • I don’t have much else to report. Except that I’m very happy that the Big Bang Theory and Gotham are back on! Yay!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Ukulele on the wall


I’ve been running into guitars hung on the wall on Pinterest. I thought they looked so cool, but when I suggested to Jake that we hang his guitars on the wall for decoration, he wanted none of it. Huh. Fine, I’ll just hang my ukulele then!

However, it turns out is very difficult to find a ukulele wall holder, and impossible to find a nice looking one. All I found were bulky plastic contraptions. And I wanted something pretty!
Pinterest had some ideas, but I couldn’t find a lot of the supplies needed, like an utility hook. I couldn’t even find a Finish word for that. What is that?


So here’s what I came up with:
  • a wooden oval from the craft section at the super market, 50% off because no one wanted it, it was fate, clearly
  • white paint to paint the oval
  • two long screws
  • white yarn for crocheting two tubes to cover the screws
  • a ton of super strong two-sided tape to fix it on the wall
I worked! And it hasn’t come down. Aaaand, I love it! It hangs on the wall right next to my computer, so I’ve found myself playing a lot more, too. Win-win.

Monday, September 21, 2015

My favorite iHerb products

This is a bit of a different post, but, hey, whatever!

Ever since I discovered iHerb last fall, I’ve been obsessed. I’ve always leaned towards natural products and when I discovered I was allergic to methylchloroisothiazolinone, most commercial products were out anyway.

However, natural products that do anything are very expensive in Finland. I’m talking 50€ a piece expensive. So when I found about iHerb I was very excited. In the beginning I went a bit crazy trying different products, but have now calmed down a bit, mainly because I’ve found which ones work for me. I suppose I’m a bit of a minimalist when it comes to cosmetics, I don’t want to have lots of products, I want to have a few that truly work for me. But new products are always a bit of a hit and miss, and especially when you can’t see them or them them out before buying.

If you are outside of the US, like me, you have to pay attention to the cost, unless you want to pay customs fees or tax. I don’t, so I try to keep the price of one order below 22€ which is the limit in Finland (and I’m guessing in EU?). This means ordering a lot of little packages. But that’s just more fun, right? The shipping costs are only around 2-4€, so it’s very affordable.

One thing you should be aware are weekly deals. Sometimes they are stuff that’s useless to me, like baby food. But sometimes they are good ones, so always look what’s on offer each week. They also seem to have 20% off all bath and beauty products regularly, maybe once a month or so. So, if I need face cream, I’ll wait for that to come around.

So, here are some product that I love and use. I’ve probably ordered dozens of products, but these are the ones that stuck. It's a pretty random selection, I admit.

J.R. Liggett's Old Fashioned Bar Shampoo Tea Tree & Hemp Oil I really like shampoo bars. Less waste! (Says the girl who orders her cosmetics via airmail) This works well for my very dry hair, I’m guessing it’s the oils? And you don’t have to use conditioner with it, which for me is a huge bonus, since I hate fuss.

Cococare  Peppermint Oil I loooove peppermint. It’s so refreshing. I put this in an essential oil diffuser and it just makes me feel better. Jake thinks it smells like a type of sweet called Marianne. I feel like it helps with headaches, too.

Tierra Mia Organics Raw Goat Milk Face Cream This is pretty expensive, but they had an promotion where everyone got a free 10 dollars to their account, so I thought, what the heck, that sounds interesting. I was a bit scared what it would be like. I mean, raw goat milk. But it’s lovely, my skin loves it. And it smells like almonds, not goat.

Everyday Minerals Jojoba Base in Rosy Fair This is a powder foundation. I’ve mentioned it on the blog already, but I recently switched to the jojoba base, and it suits my dry skin so well, I don’t have to do the mix-it-with-moisturizer-trick anymore. I brush it on with EcoTools Kabuki Brush.

Bdellium Tools Liner Brush I’m really into quit minimal make-up. I don’t use lipstick (I’d just eat it), or blush (I think it makes me look like a clown). But I really like a sort of a cat eye. I’ve tried a lot of the liquid stuff before, but it always just ended up all over my lashes. This is a very tiny brush, that’s perfect for getting a very nice flick, even if you aren’t very good at applying make-up. I use it with Everyday Minerals Powder Eyeliner. It works very well, but you really have to remember to tap all the excess powder off the brush or you’ll have black powder all over your face.

And lastly, lip balm. I’m obsessed with lip balm. I love lip balm. I can’t live without lip balm. Mmmm, lip balm. Since starting work, I haven’t made my own, but I found that Sierra Bees Organic Lip Balms are a very good alternative. I especially love the Mint Burst (did I mention I love peppermint?) and vanilla.

So, there you have it, some of my favorites! Feel free to share yours!

Monday, September 14, 2015

End of summer capsule wardrobe

I've always been fascinated with the idea of a capsule wardrobe, but have never quite managed to build one. In fact, for some years it has been one of my new years resolutions… However, I recently realized that I've actually been wearing a sort of capsule wardrobe lately quite accidentally.

Yes, it is very casual, this is just what I have been wearing on my spare time.


3 t-shirts, two gray, one black. If it looks like it’s the same shirt in all pictures, that’s because it is. Good t-shirts are surprisingly hard to find so when I did, I bought three.


One black sweater, one tribal cardigan, one light weight jacket.


Two pairs of skinny jeans, one gray, one black. These look odd in the pictures. I swear I’m not a hobbit.


One small suede handbag, one black Fjällräven Kånken backpack.


One pair of black Minnetonka moccasins.


Foldable Ray-Ban Wayfarers, fitbit, my engagement ring, one pair of bar earrings from Etsy, CK Be perfume.

I also had socks, underwear, 3 bras and sleepwear.

That’s it. I've been enjoying it immensely. It’s taken the guessing out of dressing. (Ha.)
What does the weather look like today? It’s hot. Great! Wear a t-shirt. It’s cool now, but it’ll get warmer later. Alright, add the cardigan. Looks like it’s going to be cool all day. OK, I’ll just wear my only sweater. It’s cold. Wonderful, I’ll don my one jacket.

The same shoes everyday. The same earrings. One pair of sunglasses to choose from. My only perfume. The ring and fitbit never leave me.

I've been using the backpack when I have something bigger to take with me. It’s very good for biking. The handbag when I've needed to take something small that I haven’t been able to stuff into my pockets.

That’s it. And It’s been lovely. I haven’t had to think about getting dressed almost at all, and I've still managed to look decent. Perfect.

I hope I’ll manage to build a capsule for all seasons!

Monday, August 31, 2015

in August

  • The days were warm, and the nights cool and most importantly, dark. I just find it so hard to sleep in the summer when the sun just refuses to set. August is definitely my favorite month!
  • For the first time, we really appreciated having a yard. Maybe because…
  • We got a giant trampoline! Sooo much fun. But Jake threw out his back jumping and had to stay home for a week on sick leave.
  • Jake also hurt his little finger badly (not on the trampoline), there was an audible crack. Luckily it wasn’t broken, but it was black and blue for a long time.
  • Our red currant bush made a nice amount of berries, which I picked up and froze for the winter. Also one of the blueberry bushes my parents planted in the spring made four berries!
  • I met a friend from art school I hadn't seen in about 10 years for dinner and we had a lovely catch up.
  • I went wild blueberry picking with some neighbours and was eaten alive by mosquitos. But I did get some blueberries for the winter.
  • We went to the beach for the first time since I moved here! And I swam for the first time in years. It was super cold, but so nice.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Two valets

My old valet on the left, the new one on the right.

I've been thinking a lot about getting rid of things, ever since reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying UpBut I wasn't thinking about it when I got a new valet. It just sort of happened.

I remember when I got my old valet, I thought it was the perfect one. So many pockets and places to put things. How I could organize all my cards and carry stuff like stamps and an extra hair tie. I loved it, so I wasn't thinking about getting a whole new one.

What I was thinking was that I’d like to get a smaller additional valet for those occasions when I don’t want to take my handbag with me, when I’m just running quickly to the store or when I want to take some money with me for a walk.

So, I got one.


It has just room for my debit cards, drivers license and some money. That’s it.

No bonus cards, no library card, no insurance card, no union card, none of the eleven cards I was carrying with me. And it turned out that was enough.

I haven’t used that new valet just when I don’t want to carry my big one. I've used it all the time.

And I love it.

Yeah, maybe occasionally I’d like to go to the library and I don’t have my card with me or maybe there is a great offer and I don’t have my bonus card with me, but actually, I've used my smaller valet for three months now, and those occasions have not yet happened. I haven’t once wished I had more with me.

So, I guess that old valet is destined to be the place where I keep all those cards, for the off change I’ll sometimes need them. But, mostly, I don’t think I will.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Reader Pictures

I thought it would be fun to share pictures of amigurumis people have done from my patterns! I really enjoy seeing how they turn up and always love when someone sends me a link!

I tried to comb up all the pictures people have send to me.
If yours is missing send me an email at riikkael (at) gmail (dot) com and I'll add you. And if you want yours to be removed shoot me an email and I'll take it out.