Tuesday, December 31, 2013


  This New Year´s  eve I will be wearing a custom made outfit, just for the occasion. I got it finished yesterday, right in time for the party!

In reality this outfit is just another one for the office for Yule time, post X-mas that is. But it works well as a party look for tonight too. The reason I call this "The Ball Drop in NYC" is because of the print in the fabric. It is just perfect for New Year! In fact, I bought it over a year ago because I fell in love with the sky scrapers pictured. I´m a nature gal, but like a bit of city too. In my youth I lived in New York for a while, and this dress reminds me of those awesome times too.

The sketch. Like often, this dress looks better in real life. More interesting I might say. But it is sooo important to have a design in paper to start off by. I wanted to keep the end result more modern, so I omitted the blue ruffle in the hem. On the other hand I did not want this look to be all about modernism. So I added the long pearl necklace, earrings, and a classic satin bow in my hair to bring some good old-fashioned glamour to the look.
This dress has a bolero top. I can take if off if it gets too hot, and continue with short sleeves. Handy!
The dark blue here and there around the outfit brings it alive. The pearls, the nails, the eyeshadow, and the bow in my hair tie the whole together neatly. I made the lining for the dress of the same blue fabric shown in the neckhole. So if I dance hard, it just might show too!

I´m still psyched about being able to sign my work with these tags!

  Instead of hanging out at Times Square, we are having a family party at our home. That includes good company, fireworks, and delicious food and drink of course. What else is needed!?

  Happy and fun New Year 2014!

Monday, December 30, 2013


  It seems so soon, but it is time to get ready for New Year´s already! I started by doing my nails.

Time to ditch the red & gold of X-mas, and make way for blue & silver.

The brighter the dark blue, the better. It resembles the night skies of this season, and silver is for the twinkling stars of course.
This chocolate candy brings me good memories of my childhood X-mases. We only stopped eating them right before puking! Good times... but I would not go that far anymore.  =)

  I don´t do fake nails. They look a bit too claw-like to my taste. Instead I do my nails myself, and thus get more variety in my looks as well. Sunday is often my nail day, and I make them once a week, which is enough. I have found that Inglot has good quality nail polishes, that last quite well throughout the entire week.
  Nails are a fun way to play with style and the sabbats!

Friday, December 27, 2013


  My oh my, have I been good this year! Santa brought me a Vitamix blender!!!

To me it is the thought that counts, rather than the cost of gifts... Clearly Santa disagrees. =)
To be honest, I have dreamt of this machine for years. And now I´ve got it. I can´t believe it. Yipee!

For this smoothie I threw in the citruses pictured above, seven small tangerines and a lime. Plus some water of course. The tangerines were full of seeds, and as an experiment I did not remove all of them. I gave the mixture a 30 second spin in the blender and...

...the result was incredibly creamy! I can´t believe there are seeds in this smooth mixture! Awesome!

  Looks like I´m in for a good start for the upcoming new year. Yum!
  May this gadged add a decade (or more) of years to my life!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013


  Wish you all the best of holidays!
  Here are some glimpses of X-mas in Nelland.

Hyacints are a must every Yule.

I try to remember to eat these during the holidays too...

X-mas morning tradition.

Honey Crunch, my absolute favorite.
Another favorite of mine.
Some more mulled wine...

Everything tastes it´s best outdoors.
It was well worth the trip!  =)

No snow, but party lights look lovely just the same.
The tree turned out beautiful!

Brand new decorations this year.
Our sauna. Built after the WW2.
No electricity in the sauna. That´s what brings a good old-fashioned atmosphere!

Santa made it to greet us!
  Very merry Christmas!

Monday, December 23, 2013


  There is something special about going in to the forest with the whole family, in hopes of finding a nice spruce tree to bring home for X-mas. We have always done this in our family, also in my childhood. And I want to carry on that tradition, even though it is easy to buy a perfectly proportioned Christmas tree from virtually every street corner.
  It is a great feeling to do something together, as a family. Everybody can join in, and there is that hidden little glory there for the person who finally finds the best tree.  =)

This is where we went to hunt (no worries, we got the land owner´s permission!). I can´t believe there is no snow for X-mas this year.   =(  Oh well, that´s just one aspect to the holidays. At least I have tons of chocolate and good company.

Somebody had so much energy that she could hardly stand up... There was a nearly-perfect spruce right by the road. But my husband dared not take it, he´s too so polite.

And another nice tree easily available by the road... and another no no for us. These natural trees represent the true beauty of nature. They are not "perfect" to our eyes, but they´re perfect pieces of wild nature, the way they were meant to be. That´s cool.
Hey, this will do!

Besides their visible beauty, Christmas trees smell beautiful too. Once, when our son was a toddler, and had bad allergies to everything, we had a plastic tree, but it was totally lame! Until then I never had realized how big a role the scent of spruce plays in making X-mas. 
Okay, I´m not as quick as my husband at this, but I can do it, I can do it! 

  Now all we need to do is take the tree inside and decorate it. It is also a part of our tree tradition to do the decorating on X-mas morning, with everybody who is spending the holidays with us. I put up the lights in the previous evening, so the tree is all ready for enthusiastic decorators, big and small.  =)
  I wonder what it will end up looking like this year...?


  As part of prepairing for X-mas, my daughter and I took the time and effort to drive to a nearby city to visit a candy factory´s outlet. Not because the grocery stores don´t carry enough bulk for my needs, but it is a nice change and a nice day spent together.

The trip begun by hitting the highway, and that´s when the sun begun to shine too! How lovely.

Couldn´t help smiling, sunshine is pure positive energy to me. I just love going the extra mile to make my everyday life more varied and interesting. Especially if I can share it with someone. Daytrips here and there are a good option.

The skyline of the little town we hit. It is a shame there was no time for a proper tour. I know the old part of town is like the perfect picture of Christmas. There are many handicraft shops there, and they do an amazing job decorating their windows with wreaths of spruce, lit candles, ribbons and bows, and anything beyond my imagination. Well, maybe next year...

The new part of town was decorated with modern day Christmas lights. Had there been snow, it would have looked better. But we came here for the chocolate, not Christmas decoration! The most important thing here (and my heaven on earth), the candy factory, did not disappoint me this time either. I got everything I wanted, plus loads some free taste bites. Yum!

The chocolate tasting was a good starter for a more proper lunch. We ate at this beautiful all-vegetarian restaurant. This was my second time here, and I dig it so much I think I´ll come here every time I visit this town.
The salad bar is tiny, but every single dish is fresh, delicious and of top quality. And suitable for vegetarians! That is rare.
Ahh, finally some food! As the main course I had whole grain pasta with tomato sauce. So good, so tasty, and so much better for me than in a "traditional" restaurant.

This restaurant is built in an old house that was originally a home for a wealthy family. There are different salons in which guests can enjoy their food in peace and somewhat privacy. The atmoshpere is friendly and relaxed, even luxurious.

Then it was time to hit the road again. Our bellies filled with awesome vegan food, and the trunk filled with chocolate, we drove happily back home in sunset.
  Where´s all the chocolate, you may ask? It is waiting, hidden, in the closet until X-mas eve comes. If Santa pays us a visit, and is nice to us, he can have some too. I know, his cholesterol might be high already, but it is Christmas after all!  =)

Friday, December 20, 2013


  Faux leather of course! This dress will go well all through Yule, from the beginning of December to mid January. It is not X-masy, it is just warm-looking and a classic.

Dancing the Yule away...!  I´m so pleased with how this dress turned out. I have always liked the look of sheepskin coats, but only now realized I could turn it into a casual dress for indoors. Besides, I´ve never yet come across with a coat with a nice cut. So this solves the problem. Yipee!

Comfortableness is always a must. My clothes need to be able to perform in everything I´m capable of too!

The fabric is thin suede-like polyester. It looks a lot like the real thing. The fur is also synthetic, and does a good job  imitating authentic sheepskin.

This classic needs no gimmicks. Even earrings are plain button-like studs (I´ve had them for years). Makeup is nude, with the only splash of color placed on my cheeks. I applied glittering red on them to give the look a fresh outdoors feeling.

P.S. It is exceptional that we don´t have snow yet. Or we did but it melt away. Fingers crossed for a white (or even frosty) X-mas!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


  This is also a way to tune in to X-mas spirit, not to mention perfecting my garderobe. =)

Pretty nails are a pleasure. I do my nails once a week, and I prefer natural ones over fake. I´m a natural beauty kinda girl anyway. As a stay-at-home mom, I need to have short nails, but once the time comes that I no longer need to scrub dirty bottoms, I will let my nails grow a bit. 
For Yule I chose a warm basic red with some golden shimmer in it. To top the look off, I added a drop of glittering silver nailpolish on each nail (that is so much more wearable than rhinestones!).

While waiting for the nails to dry, I enjoyed another holiday spirit; a glass of mulled wine.

  It´s the little things in life that make a difference. That need to be recognized. That make us happy. This is one of them.  =)

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


  "Rosolli" is what this salad is called over here, and it is a must in the X-mas feast table.
  I like rosolli so much, that I´m making it already for lunch. Once a year is far too rarely of this awesome mixture of tastes. Today I made it a complete meal by adding chickpeas in it.

This is beautiful inside and out. Beetroot dyes the whole salad  rich, deep red. Perfect for Yule. As I like my foods healthy (and desserts decadent), I added no dressing to it. Only a pinch of seasalt was needed. This is a food I can eat guilt-free, without gaining weight. It balances out nicely all those mountains of chocolate pralines I vacuum inside me during these weeks of Yule... =)

Rosolli and water is all I had for lunch, and dinner, today. Didn´t even crave for anything else.
The recipe (for two):

1 lb (500 grams) carrots
1 cup (2,5 dl) chickpeas (cooked)
1 medium-sized pickled beetroot
1-2 fermented cucumbers (or pickled)
a pinch of seasalt if needed

+ Peel, chop and steam the carrots. Chop the beetroot and cucumber(s). Combine everything and check for salt.

  This is my favorite way of eating rosolli. In it´s simplicity it tastes unbelievably soft and creamy, because there are no strong flavors disturbing the peace.