Tag Archives: lifestyle

Celebrating Pride Helsinki 2016

Pride Helsinki: the one day when my city is more colorful than I could imagine and when my friends and I head to a wonderful summer-y picnic. Amidst all the hate and mistrust, which breeds things like Brexit and the attack at the international Istanbul airport, there’s nothing more wonderful than joining in to a celebration of love and equality!

pride helsinki 2016

The march was only an hour long but it went great: there were no hateful incidents (at least none that I saw or read about afterwards) and the weather was unbelievably sunny and hot. Most times that I’ve attended Pride, the weather has been great, which I take as a sign of approval from the universe…

helsinki pride

The main event of Pride Helsinki after the march was in Kansalaistori, a park area right in the center of town. A stage was set up for artists to perform and speeches to be made. The area is quite small though, and with the 35 000 attendees trying to squeeze there, it got very crowded very fast. We ended up choosing a more quiet area further away from the booths that had food, balloons, and various storefronts as well as from the stage. The music was background noise while we sunbathed on the grass. We even had ice cream that came with little “fortunes” and didn’t mind paying 4,5 € for the yumminess that came in the form of butterscotch ice cream in between salted peanut cookies.

pride helsinki

Did you attend Pride this year?

Kissakahvila Helsinki: a Trip to a Cat Cafe

This summer we finally got a cat cafe here in Helsinki. There’s been one in Finland but none here in the capital so it’s great that Kissakahvila Helsinki opened here now. It’s right in the center of town and naturally I made a reservation there as soon as they started taking bookings. The cafe proved to be so popular that first two weeks it was booked solid before the place had even opened.

cat cafe

The cafe takes a 5 euro “cat care fee” which goes to supporting the cats that live on the premises. There are right now six cats living there: five kittens and one adult. The kittens were all really lively although they had a tendency to go nap a lot…but that’s what babies do, of course! Sadly we didn’t get to see the only adult cat, Pete, because he was away getting worm medicine.

The food was absolutely amazing: everything is made in the cafe, so all the food is fresh and home made. We saw some of the delicious looking sandwiches but in the end opted for carrot cake and cheese cake. They were to die for. It was like eating a little slice of heaven.

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The cafe had instructions on how to interact with the cats on their menus, which I thought was an excellent idea. It’s good that they have established the ground rules because I’m sure many customers would just love to pick up the sleeping little furballs, which naturally isn’t very nice for the kittens. All the cats seemed to like the attention, and they were not disturbed by the hassle even when sleeping.

Hopefully soon I’ll have a chance to go there again!

Have you ever been to a cat cafe?

(Really Late) Valentine’s Day Recap

I now this is really late but I still wanted to post this just because I really had a great time on Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day Recap

So, I got roses as the first thing for Valentine’s Day. Couldn’t have hoped for a better start. I love getting flowers – I never buy them myself but I love having some around the house.

We had made reservations at a restaurant and bought tickets to see Shaun the Sheep movie. The movie was super cute (although it was slightly strange watching the movie among so many kids) and a nice feel-good flick for the Valentine’s Day.

valentines-day-roses

Here’s some pictures from the fabulous restaurant we ate at: Mamma Rosa. I can still taste the deliciousness of the food…

I had prawn soup for starters, salmon with lobster risotto for the entree and a lava cake for dessert. Pure brilliance!

valentines-day-food

I’m gonna keep this post very short and sweet because Valentine’s was a while ago already but I just wanted to show how lovely it was! Of course, it was nice then to go home together and have a nice cup of tea before getting a good night’s sleep after a long week. But I think it really is important to have these kinds of days when you just treat yourself and your significant other and splurge a bit on a romantic date night. Of course, it shouldn’t be tied to just one day of the year either :)

#YearOfHappy – A Love Letter to Myself

#YearOfHappy is Here!

#YearOfHappyI decided to take part in the #YearOfHappy linkup that October June and Allisonleighann are hosting in pursuit of a more positive attitude (and perhaps also a more regular blogging schedule). This month’s topic is “A Love Letter to Myself”.

I felt extremely flustered last year: from writing my Bachelor’s Thesis to running the Her Campus Helsinki chapter and writing for our student paper, I just had so much on my plate that I don’t know how I managed. But now, I am so grateful I participated in all those things because ultimately they made my year busy and fulfilling and made me feel super accomplished.

This year looks like it’s going to be just as busy but this time I’m less scared. I know I can pull it off and I’m eager to start working on all of my projects. I have so many great people helping me in all my endeavours that there’s no way I can fail!

So, I’d like to just remind myself, if you feel swamped/stressed/anxious, take a deep breath and step back – it’s not really that bad! You’re not in a hurry to get your Master’s, you don’t need to be best in everything, and you certainly don’t need to achieve everything RIGHT NOW. There’s time. So enjoy all the little moments and don’t forget to have fun.

Here’s a little reminder list of all the great things in my life right now:

  • Merlin the kittykat#YearOfHappy Roses
  • my boyfriend
  • amazing friends
  • BA and hopefully soon MA degree
  • Her Campus Helsinki and my lovely writing team
  • BTSB magazine
  • Lukufiilis magazine
  • a wonderful apartment
  • supportive family
  • my health
  • so many books to read…
  • all the travels I’ve done and the trips I’m going to do
  • my blog :)

 

Life Lately: Fall Semester Shenanigans

life lately

This semester has been really crazy: I took a lot of courses for my MA studies and somehow in between all my classes I managed to have some resemblance of a social life as well as travel a bit.

When summer was ending and school only starting, we did a short weekend trip to my boyfriend’s cabin, which was a great was to get away from the busy everyday life. We also celebrated our third anniversary shortly after that. I was involved in some events for the new freshmen, which was a great way to get into the swing of things at school.

I also managed to have time for the art fair and a trip to Suomenlinna and to Tallinn.

life lately 2

I also saw the first football game of my life this fall – Ari dragged me to the Finland vs. Romania match, which was surprisingly entertaining even for me (I have never followed sports of any kind).

Midway through the semester I went to the book fair (an annual visit for me) and then I visited Ireland for the first time ever. I loved that trip and everyone there was incredibly friendly.

I’ve been doing a lot of work, running the Helsinki chapter of Her Campus. For our Snapshot articles, I’ve attended a lot of art shows, which is a lot of fun!

The last Hobbit just came out and we went to line up for the midnight premiere tickets for the special night event, which effectively destroyed our sleep rhythm.

We also organized a Her Campus Helsinki bake sale, which was a big hit. Now, classes are over and we just have our finals left, which is something we had to celebrate with some Chinese food in Kaisaniemi.

christmas helsinki

Christmas is almost here and I can’t believe how fast the fall semester went by! Hopefully 2015 will be just as amazing as this year!

Making a Home: The Little Things I love

There are so many little things I love about my apartment. Now that me and Ari have gotten to decorate the place together it has those little touches that make it feel very personal and cozy. Previously, when I lived with my roommate in the same place, it was nice but it didn’t have that special something that make a place truly feel like home. Maybe it was the fact that most of the furniture was leftover from my mom, maybe it was the lack of personal items like paintings, or perhaps it was just that with the student budget (that I’m still on), we just couldn’t afford to make a huge effort with the place.

Now it’s different when I’m living with my boyfriend and we have consciously tried to buy pieces of furniture and other items that would reflect us as individuals as well as a couple. We compromise with some stuff but mostly we have quite similar tastes. The apartment looks younger and more energetic. No more hand-me-downs! (Well, we still have lots of old stuff but it’s balanced with the new.)

MY HOME

Books and magazines are definitely something we have plenty lying around. I couldn’t live without my books. I also tend to have a selection of my most used jewelry, perfumes and nail polishes on display for easy access.

PASTAPASTA

Merlin is always napping somewhere, he’s such a sleepyhead.
We also have bunch of items from abroad, from different trips around Europe (and some items from Indonesia). We love to travel and it’s always nice to have something to come home with. These pieces remind us of the great memories.
We also have several paintings, most of which we chose together at one point or another. It’s nice to cover those big, empty white walls with beautiful art that will inspire you for years to come.

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I absolutely adore the apartment we have right now but most likely we will have to move after a few years (prices are always going up and it is only a rental that is student budget friendly). But for now, we have really made it a home!

OOTD: Flow-y Top and a Long Vest

Another outfit post :) I recently got this new black long vest and I figured I’d pair it with something cute and flow-y – a.k.a. my Audrey Hepburn tunic top, which I bought from Indonesia last year.

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I also wanted to combine them with my new black leggings, which I’ve reserved for tops that a slightly too short to be dresses but too long be just regular shirts. The leggings are the ones I got from Tallinn from Reserved.

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Any thoughts on my OOTD?

Traveling to Tallinn

cruise tallinn

This week I took a cruise to Tallinn with my boyfriend’s mom who was kind enough to take me there :) I’ve been to Tallinn many times but it still hasn’t lost its charm – especially the Old Town, which is as beautiful as ever. Our hotel was right in the middle of the Old Town so we had all the amazing restaurants and little boutiques nearby.

tallinn-collage

Our first night we went to a Russian restaurant Troika, which has great traditional Russian foods (the salmon I would recommend to everyone; the restaurant is on the edge of the town square in Old Town). Our hotel breakfast was in a traditional Estonian restaurant that was next to our hotel (St. Petersbourg).

Most of my shopping was done in Viru Keskus, which is a huge mall with tons of fashionable (and cheap) stores. I found some great items from the summer sales.

I will soon be posting more photos from the cruise as well as a haul post so stay tuned!

Throwing a Surprise Party: Friends, Food and Fun!

party punch-cake-chips

During the weekend we threw a surprise birthday for our friend Oskar and I have to say it was one of the most successful surprise parties I’ve been a part of. Oskar’s girlfriend organized the party and asked our help in setting everything up. She had gotten amazing foods for the party: croissants with cheese, basil and strawberries; chocolate cake; blueberry pie as well as chips and chili nuts.

recipes-by-susan

The secret to throwing a surprise party seems to be balancing the line of not telling the birthday girl/boy and not alienating them. I have once organized a surprise party and during the planning period the birthday girl started thinking that her friends didn’t like her anymore because we couldn’t hang out with her as much (since we were busy planning and setting up the party). This time it was a close call since many people had to blow off meeting up with Oskar but in the end, everything went great and no one ended up ruining the surprise.

We had gotten him a gift basket – kind of like a summer care package – with a jump rope, comics, sun screen, and other things. Me and Ari also made the punch, and here’s the recipe if you want to make some:

  • bottle of white wine (something fruity)
  • liter bottle of apple-grape juice
  • 1,5 liter bottle of apple-flavored mineral water
  • half a liter bottle of vodka
  • bag of frozen berries (we used a mix with strawberries and raspberries)

It was such a fun party – even though I was suffering from a migraine earlier during the day – and it was fun seeing so many of our friends there! HAPPY BIRTHDAY OSKAR!

My Life Lately: an Update

life lately

A little update on what I’ve my life lately:

  • Barbecue at our friend Riku’s house: brilliant food (smoked salmon, lamb, salad, etc) and good company!
  • Dinner with Ari’s dad and his girlfriend: we went to Helmi Grilli, which is a restaurant at the mall near our house.
  • Enjoying the company of our new kitten, Merlin: he’s growing up so fast and it’s a lot of fun seeing all the new things he keeps learning!
  • Cycling to the nearest beach: there’s a beach 30 min bike ride away from our house and we have been going there a lot – there’s a café that serves the best salmon soup and pancakes and the water is finally warm enough for swimming!
  • Throwing a surprise party to our friend: more about this in the next blog post ;)