Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Right now I could give a lot for an ice-cream.

This is soon going to turn into my own personal wailing wall, but ... it’s too HOT. I don’t feel like eating, or going outside, or doing exercise. Bad bad bad. All I can think of is a cold shower and a big bowl of vanilla ice-cream with caramel sauce and nuts. And lots of cinnamon. Sigh, it’s tempting. But food-wise this week has already gone completely downhill, so it might be best to forget about the ice-cream and make some frozen yoghurt instead.

CIMG1237

Today’s treat: a big glass of cold water with lemon and frozen raspberries.

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Maybe it’s time to start enjoying the summer

... instead of feeling constantly tired and weary. I don’t really know how to do it, though: maybe make a lot of smoothies and do enjoyable things instead of just sitting inside the house, cleaning and going to the supermarket in the mornings. Life, especially in the summertime, should be more fun than this :)

So come on, tell me: what do you do to cheer yourself up when life is a bit dull?

67. Unimportance

All the world says,
"I am important;
I am separate from all the world.
I am important because I am separate,
Were I the same, I could never be important.
"Yet here are three treasures
That I cherish and commend to you:
The first is compassion,
By which one finds courage.
The second is restraint,
By which one finds strength.
And the third is unimportance,
By which one finds influence.
Those who are fearless, but without compassion,
Powerful, but without restraint,
Or influential, yet important,
Cannot endure.

Tao Te Ching

Tired

It’s one of those days when your body is feeling heavy, and your mind is wiped out of colours.

Now I’ll listen to some sad Finnish music and then cheer myself up somehow,

Monday, 28 June 2010

Back to normal?

Hello, all you sweet people out there.. did you survive the weekend? I just want to get back to my daily routine of eating healthily, doing exercise and reading interesting things. So no more partying and hangovers. That’s the plan :)

CIMG1199

Before the party. Lots of good food: about five types of fish and an abundance of alcohol.

CIMG1212

The day after. PJ-day. Doing nothing-day. Blaaah-day. 

CIMG1213

Having chips for the first time in months. Got to admit it, though. they were gooood. Real food for the hang over soul. 

Now I need to go and find some boxes: we are going to move this week, you see.

Have a good week!!!

Friday, 25 June 2010

Z and A

Zsuzsi talks to her younger brother A.
Z: I like you very much and think you are a very nice little brother.
A: Errrr... have you been drinking too much Red Bull again?

Yup, in my family we are used to expressing our feelings. God forbid I try to hug my brothers: they'd hide under the bed and stay there until it would be safe to come out again.

Egy álmos és éhes lány tanulja...

...a magyar szavakat. I’m proud of myself: have been studying for two hours this morning although I’m officially on summer holidays.

CIMG1194  

Next up: an art exhibition maybe? Drawing that badly requires a lot of talent.

CIMG1195

Finnish and Hungarian are supposedly related: well, it doesn’t help much when you are trying to learn vocab. Or can you see any similarities between the Hungarian (blue) and the Finnish (red) words?

People and their happiness...

One of the best things about my job is hearing about all the good (and sometimes bad) things that happen to people. The point of the job is not to give any advice and you don’t even know their names, but sometimes they tell you about things they find very important. People have been happy about their recent engagement, excited about new puppies, preparing their 50-year-anniversary as married. Sometimes their news are sadder.
To me this is an honour, and I’m getting more and more convinced that I want to work with people in the future. People and their happiness is far more important than selling stuff, translating some manuals or drawing up EU-guidelines.

Happy Midsummer!

I wish all friends and family in Finland and Sweden a very happy Midsummer.
A Swedish friend will be arranging a Midsummer party tomorrow, so my celebrations have to wait until then. I’ll be working today but doubt there will be anyone else there… good thing, easy day for me :D All Spanish people will probably be packed in front of the telly tonight anyway, so I might join them.
And for the rest of you: you can always celebrate this Friday as if it was Midsummer with lots of good food and drink, decorating and dancing around a pole that looks like this:
midsommar1
The Finns usually make a huge bonfire instead, so you could try that one too :)
Juhannuskokko

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Smoothies Gone Pink

CIMG1191

CIMG1193

For this particular smoothie you will need: a handful of frozen raspberries, some melon and a natural, fat-free yoghurt (125 ml). And some cinnamon.

It’s funny how you read something in a book or a magazine, and then you just start following whichever advice it is they are giving you, although you don’t really know whether it’s true or not. Years ago I read that cinnamon would speed up the metabolism or something similar, and I have been putting it in almost everything ever since. It does give a nice touch though.

Oh, and did Slovakia just get to the next round in the World Cup? If that’s the case, then it’s time for a big YAY!

Сегодня, 24 июня 2010.года

Song: a good oldie
Breakfast: delicious. and eaten in bed.
CIMG1190
Secret desire: way too expensive
Mulberry-Hayden-tote3
Boring task: cleaning. That’s why I’m still here and not there.
Even more boring task: ironing. I want a personal ironer (i.e. person who irons) for Christmas.
Amount of tea: 1 litre and still counting.
Random discussion: talking to an old friend from Transylvania about cider and other strange things. Apparently we have known each other for like 10 years. Where does the time fly?
Headache: all my Slavs our out of the.World Cup. At least Argentina is still in.
Odd wish: muscle soreness. I want to feel the pain, bring it on!
Up next: pilates. Will probably not grant odd wish, but it's good for flexibility :D
t100441-0

Boo!

CIMG1189

I sometimes get the most brilliant ideas: like waking up at 7.15 so that I can go for a morning work out. It was nice actually: 50 minutes of running stairs, jogging and walking. But now I’m feeling a bit dead :D AND COLD, it’s freezing in here, and it looks like it’s going to rain, wohoo! Anyhow: fun day ahead with lots of cleaning and planning Finnish delicacies for our Scandinavian Midsummer celebration on Saturday. Actually. I’m just supposed to make a cake and bring the vodka, but I feel inspired.

445998

Blueberry pie is a must in summer!

 

hapankorppurullat

Rye crackers filled with salmon or ham and cheese.

 

rukiinen_karjalanpiirakka

Karjalanpiirakka AKA Karelian pasties. These are extremely tasty and something very Finnish :)

Karelian pasties or Karelian pies (South Karelian dialect of Finnish: karjalanpiirakat, singular karjalanpiirakka; North Karelian dialect of Finnish: karjalanpiiraat, singular karjalanpiiras; are traditional pasties from the region of Karelia. Today they are eaten throughout Finland.

The oldest traditional pasties usually had a rye crust, but the North Karelian and Ladoga Karelian variants also had wheat alongside of rye to improve the baking characteristics of the available rye breads. The common fillings of this era were barley and talkkuna. The 19th century first introduced potato and buckwheat as new fillings, and later due to trade, also rice and millet.

Nowadays in the most familiar and common recipe the pasties are made from a thin rye crust with a filling of rice. Butter, often mixed with boiled egg (eggbutter or munavoi), is spread over the hot pasties before eating.

Karjalanpiirakka have Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG) status in Europe[1]. (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karelian_pasties)

 !02_finlandia_vodka_kupa

OK, remember to drink responsibly. And if you are under 18 (or 20 or 21 depending on where you are), stay away from that bottle :)

 

Pictures:

www.vaasan.com

http://www.bartrender.hu/assets/images/!02_finlandia_vodka_kupa.jpg

www.mtv3.fi

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

This is what I call music...

... much better than the song in the previous post. This, my friends, is what makes one real happy and ready to party (even at 2 pm on a Tuesday) :)

Now you can write to it, you can fight to it that's the beauty of it, ain't a wrong or right to it roll a truck to it, ride the bus to it get drunk stupid or fall in love to it you can pray to it, work or play to it add a backpack, cap or hat, a chain to it you can dream to it but never sleep to it the main thing remains, you move your feet to it
no matter what if they say the world won't end today don't you believe it that's the way I see it

Hit or Miss?

 

The first time I heard this I thought it was an OK song. But some clever person on my street is playing it on full volume ALL DAY LONG. Miss, miss, miss... it’s coming out of my ears, and I don’t like it at all anymore. How about you?

"What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise¨ [Oscar Wilde]

This morning I finally managed to get a hold of my aunt, and things do look bad indeed. As I mentioned last week, I got some bad news: a close relative of mine was diagnosed with a serious illness. We still don’t know at what stage the disease is, so there is no exact prognosis either, but if it has spread, the likelihood of surviving is very small. But at least there is hope and this is a moment when we all need to dig into our minds and find enough sisu and love to be there for each other and keep supporting the people who need it the most. 

At a personal level this probably means that I will be going to Finland soon to spend a couple of weeks there with my family, as well as visit relatives.

Smoothie, almonds and tea

Good morning!

Yesterday’s walk turned into a run and it was just perfect. I ran as fast as I could + ran all the hills and stairs I could find. Challenging hills and stairs is so much fun, and now I’m just waiting for my chance to repeat it :)

hillrunning

Now I’ll just finish my huge cup of tea and then go to town to get some cards and other stuff.

HAPPY TUESDAY EVERYONE!

Monday, 21 June 2010

Now out for a walk

CIMG1172

Work is finally over, and I’m going to go out for a little walk (maybe I’ll do some sprinting and jumping in stairs as well :D), before taking a long and relaxing bath.

Top 10 Books

Ok, imagine this. You’re stuck on a deserted island and nobody will come and save you before you read ten books, Which ones would you choose?

41ZdJAvF tL._SL500_AA300_ afterdark

431L 3785_jpg_280x450_q85 atonement book_tao-te-ching_en death-and-the-penguin masterandmargarita n125835 picofdoriangray-728143 514qh1qcdel

“The whiter the bread, the quicker you’re dead!”

I keep telling people that white bread is bad for you, but they refuse to listen to me. This article might shed some light upon things, this is why I prefer not to put that stuff in my mouth:
Why White Bread is Bad for You
The article is not written by a specialist, but as far as I can see, it contains the same information that can be found in health magazines and books on nutrition.
Enjoy the read!

Do you eat white bread?

Order in a chaotic world

I’m one of those people who like to have everything planned: even impulsiveness is planned to those moments when I’m not busy with anything else. In order to feel good, I need to plan my meals, workouts, studies and social gatherings. Some people might think this is boring, but I simply have too much to do to sit and roll my thumbs. Right now my life is a bit too chaotic for my own wellbeing. Since everything is so structured, any changes will lead to a complete mess. There is no room for "bad days" (like yesterday), when all I want to do is lie in bed and wait until the black thundercloud above my head has moved on to pester someone else. Feeling the joy of doing the things I love is one of the best feelings in the world: and in order to stay on top all the time, positive energy is essential. I get it from meeting friends, eating well, getting enough sleep and exercising. So what is it that disturbs the balance?

The wrong food: this weekend I have been eating really, really badly. The trip to Burger King on Friday is forgivable, since it’s something that happens about once a month and only when I’m really craving a hamburger. If you swap the chips for a side salad and skip the mayo, your meal ends up with "decent" nutritional values*. The lasagna on Saturday night might also be considered OK, although having it for lunch would have been a far better choice. But we can forget about Sunday: the lunch was still ok, but after that it started going downhill: white bread and cheese for a snack, frozen pizza for dinner. After starting to pay attention to what I’m putting in my mouth, I have noticed that the stuff I eat really affect my mood and my energies. So why eat something I think tastes just about alright and will definitely make me feel grumpy?

Sudden changes: this one is tough for someone who’s constantly living according to her diary. Sure, in summer I can be a bit flexible, but if everything goes the way I want it to, I will pretty much have plan each and every minute of my schedule this autumn. This doesn’t mean that I don’t want to spend time with family and friends, on the contrary, it will be more important than ever. I will just have to plan it very carefully. There is time for everything, you just need to find it and make sure it suits everyone, including you.

Exercising: this one is far from easy because my plan is to exercise twice or three times a day. The running is the one thing that causes the most problems, since I can only run in the evening, and I want to do it four times a week, including the weekend. This basically means that at least one evening of the weekend has to be spent home :) It’s so easy to think "I’ll do it tomorrow instead", but I think it’s best to stick to original plan or you’ll end up doing everything tomorrow.

pravs-j-tomorrow-will-never-come

 

 

* Nutritional values of a Whopper meal with side salad, diet coke and no mayo (according to the BK website).

Calories: 490.1

Fat: 20.5g

Carbs: 50.4g

Protein: 24.9g

Random Ramblings on a Monday Morning

Yet another new week is beginning. It’s sunny outside, and soon it’s time for a walk in the sun, and food shopping. I love supermarkets, could spend hours in there just looking at stuff :D Today’s plan is to find some cottage cheese, which isn’t as easy as it sounds in this country. Coming from the dairy-loving North where everyone, from young to old, has milk with every meal ("it’s good for your bones, dear") and uses all other kinds of dairy (milk, yoghurt, sour milk, kefir, cottage cheese, quark, puddings, rice puddings, "viili", various kinds of cheese, cream, sour cream, creme fraiche... ) the rest of the world seems a bit... void.

Jeez. What a huge problem!

What else? Well, I’m listening to random love songs in Polish. it’s so silly. Love songs tend to be silly, the only good one is Iris by Goo Goo Dolls, Spain will be playing football tonight, hopefully they will win, for the wellbeing of this country. I will work. Also, some postcards would be a good investment.

Scales is a horrible invention, just use measuring tape. It will keep you a lot happier!

And last but not least: dobra muzyka po polsku.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Too much feelings

charlie-brown-argh

It’s been a while since my feelings have taken such an eventful ride in the rollercoaster. Today I have been happy, joyful, hopeful, excited, satisfied, worried, and scared. My brother just gave me some really bad family-related news and I really don’t know how to handle it. Gosh, all we can do is hope.

She is being spoilt.

Wonderful things this sunny Friday.

Nice walk and lots of sunshine

CIMG1174

CIMG1175

CIMG1176

CIMG1173

Good friends and surprises

CIMG1179

La vida es maravillosa!

Clever Ideas

Clever idea of the day: make a salad. And not just any salad, but an extremely tasty one. You will need: lettuce mix, 100 g low-fat cottage cheese, 200 g shrimps/prawns and ½ mango.

Eat this and you will get:

345 g of fruit and veggies (more than half of the recommended daily dose for women)

7 g dietary fiber (almost one third of the recommended daily dose for women)

Carbs: 34,6 g, fat: 6,7 g and protein: 44,9 g.

 

The salad is very sweet thanks to the mango, so you won’t be craving for any dessert either!

And the masterpiece looks something like this:

CIMG1180

Träningsvärk

Good morning all you sweet people around the world!! Hopefully you will have a fantastic Friday with a lot of fun and sunshine.
Träningsvärk is a good Swedish word meaning Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) – see, the Swedish word is much more useful. Anyhow, my legs are feeling quite sore after spending a good 20 minutes on doing some sort of jumping, squats and press ups yesterday, followed by 30 minutes of running. And it’s f-ing worth it. I love this feeling, this morning I stayed in bed an extra 10 minutes just enjoying how sore my legs felt. Odd? Probably.
Soon I’m off to the post office: there is something nice waiting for ne there from Slovakia. D’akujem, Ivana :) Surprises from old friends are always nice.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Thursday it is

CIMG1153 

Morning starts, as always, with a morning walk followed by checking e-mails and drinking a cappuccino and a cup of tea. This morning I was really good and did some works, so that I can start a bit later tonight, yey.

CIMG1163

I have been here for exactly two weeks now, and today was the second time I made it all the way to town (at least I’m not spending any money). Walking in the sun and having lunch with almost-family was a very nice and relaxing way to spend a couple of spare hours.

CIMG1164

Tea isn’t a very popular beverage here in Spain, but to my delight (and surely there are others who appreciate this as well) the supermarkets have started stocking up on interesting teas and fusions. Today I got some Vanilla Caramel tea from Lipton. It’ll be my new weapon in the eternal war against the Sweet Tooth. According to the Lipton website:

A perfectly sweet indulgence. Delicate vanilla blends beautifully with pieces of real caramel and the taste of rich chocolate truffles. Go ahead. You deserve it.

And yup. It’s sweet enough.

And if anyone can tell me where to find the following tea, I will be eternally grateful:

LIPTON® White Tea with Blueberry & Pomegranate Flavor

First discovered in the Fujian province of China, Lipton® White Tea is plucked by hand from the tips of tea buds before the tea leaf blossoms, to preserve the natural goodness of the whole leaf. Our tea is then packaged in our unique pyramid-shaped bags that allow the long-leaf to flow freely with real blueberries for a light flavor and authentic tea infusion. Savor the flavor of 100 years’ tea expertise in every cup.

Available in:
18 Tea Bags

Ingredients:
White tea, green tea, dried apples, rosehip peel, chicory root, cinnamon bark, licorice root, ginger root, orange peel, modified corn starch, natural flavor, dried blackberry fruit pieces, dried black currant fruit pieces, pomegranate juice solids, dried blueberry fruit pieces, dried raspberry fruit pieces.

200

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Strange food that works

CIMG1149

Leftovers (a small portion of spaghetti bolognese) + lentils, mushrooms, tomato and avocado.

It looks like a real mess (I’m too lazy to try to make food look nice if I’m the only one who’s going to eat it), but it’s tasty, quick and quite healthy (we believe). I wouldn’t mind eating this again.

This summer

CIMG1148
language2
CIMG0952 (2)
Juoksu-Urban-2
aland
Plus lots of of good times with friends!

Footie Fever 2010

Tonight from 4 p.m. onwards this country will probably stand still for a couple of hours. It’s now that the tournament is seriously starting, right? I’m not really a great fan of football myself, but I’m hoping that Spain will have a game in the weekend at some point so that I can entertain myself by watching Spanish people watching football and going crazy in a bar. It’s very interesting from a sociological point of view.

Are you watching the World Cup? Who do you think will win?

I’ve got a soft spot for the Slavs (no surprises here), i.e. Slovenia, Serbia and Slovakia. And my guess is that Argentina or Holland will win the tournament this year.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Back on track (sorta, kinda)

It’s a wonderful feeling to be filled with energy again. Earlier today I did my first workout since Thursday, and later on I might be going for a power walk (no running yet), and it feels so good. I have been skipping back and forth down the hallway all day. Oh, the joy. Now I’m trying to figure out whether I should sign up for a 10K in Stockholm in September or not. It’s worth thinking about.

CIMG1137

Random note to self: find a book about clouds.

CIMG1138