These times

On Friday I cooked some sort of tian, a Provencal veggie dish I found by accident when googling something else. I used eggplant and zucchini and it was so good! I also read ”Everything I never told you” by Celeste Ng on Friday and it was really great. I loved her novel ”Little fires everywhere” but for some reason this was better imo. I also finished listening to ”Patient man” by Joy Ellis, read by Richard, today and it too was very good.

Yesterday I was a bit down. One of my best childhood friends had her 50th birthday and we couldn’t celebrate them. We’ve known each other since we were 9-y-o and their school’s all pupils came to our school for the school year as their new school was getting built and on one of the first gym classes she asked to be my pair and now she’s eldest son’s godmother.

Since there’s no celebrations during this time me and some of our mutual friends gave her together a gift card for a pedicure and a bunch of flowers delivered to their house and it was nice to surprise her. I also sent a greeting card from our family.

My friend is  working as an X-ray nurse in the pandemic hospital which I must confess makes me a bit worried. I’ve also been a bit blue since on March 27th it was the 5th anniversary of my mom’s passing and this is always sad time for me.

Luckily we had good weather during the weekend and yesterday I made a 90-minute walk in the woods (and my legs ached all night), heard finches sing  and later helped youngest son to cook us dinner and dessert since it was his HE homeworks.

Today I sorted the old cook books and recipes in kitchen self, it’s been on my to-do-list for ages. Did you know that in the 70’s it was recommended to cook pizza with liver or European cisco (fish)? I didn’t throw those recipe books to the bin yet, I’ll keep them as a curiosity.  Later me and hubby changed the cactus’ dirt and pots which has also been on the list quite some time.

There was an article about Finland’s stockpile of supplies in NYT if you want to read. There’s an old joke which goes: ”What does Sweden have Norway and Finland don’t? -Good neighbours” (neither Finland nor Norway appreciate Sweden as high as they could, sort of sibling rivalry).

Tomorrow I’m going to work for a few hours since my workplace health care is in the neighbouring house and I need to go there for some bloodworks (thyroid). Hubby will drive me there and also collect which is nice.

 

 

Sunny Sunday

This afternoon I and hubby drove to Porvoo, a small town nearby. My mom and before her my granny used to live there and they still reside at the old cemetery there as does my grandpa and auntie and my mom’s granny. I never met my grandpa and my granny’s mom, I only know them from pics and stories.

Porvoo is an old town dating back to 14th century and the cemetery is also one of the eldest in Finland. Porvoo has also been significant in some historical events here in Finland, i.e. when Sweden ceded Finland to Russia.

There’s also a very nice candy factory called Brunberg in Porvoo. My granny used to live pretty near their factory and nowadays they have a candy shop in the historical center. Of course we went first to see if the shop was open and it was! Very good for them and not so good for my diet 😀

On March 27th, next Friday, it’ll be four years since my mom died. As we drove past her flat I watched the windows and it made a bit sad. I took some pics of the cemetery, there were some gravestones I hadn’t noticed earlier. In the soldier’s grave section the large wooden cross is made by a Finnish-Swedish artist Lennart Segerstråle who at some point was my granny’s tenant and we have one painting by him (which I should probably take to be valued one day), he had given it to my granny as a thank you gift.

Near the cemetery I noticed a large (I mean huge) glacial erratic rock I had never before seen, mainly because we usually go there from the other side and when I was a kid there was so many trees there one couldn’t see anything. The rock is called Näsin kivi and you can see some pics here. It’s so large that they’ve built steps and a viewing area on top of it so we climbed there and I took some pics of the river and city centre.

Tomorrow I’m going to work. Hubby said he’d drive me there and my boss said she’s going to talk with me about the possibility for me to work from home, there’s things after all I could do in the net. I’m quite content.

 

My corona

I’ve had that song as an ear worm now for several days and it’s driving me crazy.

I’m still on sick leave all of this week. Next Monday I should go to work even as our whole house is closed and there’s no classes for adults except the Finnish courses for immigrants and their reading and writing lessons so we are quite alone there.

All the museums, theatres, schools and libraries are closed as of today until April 13th(?) but since I work for the city we’d find some substitute work if we can’t go to our workplaces. At my work we are planning to get ready for the summer as our library will be getting an interior make up with some refurnishing and there’s lots of things to get rid of or clear and the book depository in our cellar should be re-organized too. (I just can’t work there because of my work-related asthma and it’s a shame since it’s such a meditative place to be.)

Atm I’m not very keen on getting back to work especially since my boss sent a message yesterday about the three of us should work out how to do our jobs in our minuscule library and not be on the same space all of the eight hours. I wonder how that will work out.

Hubby is working from home and youngest one too.. except now he is chatting with his friends. Every hour or so there comes a message from their teachers about homeworks. Yesterday he crumbled about English teacher wanting to have an online-class next Tuesday at 9am. It’ll do him good.

They’ve also got home economics, art and PE teachers’ lessons and homeworks in the digital apps which I find interesting.

Well, I’m planning to do some sewing or something and not just sit here. In the Finnish message board I visit was panic still going strong and it gets tiring. I’m not very panicked since all of this will pass. One way or other.

 

Hello again

It’s been a while since I updated but something has happened.

Last Thursday I had an appointment to my work doctor since I had pain in my toes and feet joints and also because I had some blood tests taken. In my bloodworks the sugars were a bit high and also cholesterol was not so good and the doctor (a very nice lady) said that if I’d lose some weight they might drop and I said I’m planning to because of middlest son’s graduation and I must fit into my dress. So I’ll have new blood tests in the fall. About my joint pains she put me forward to see a physiotherapist which comes up in April and she tought I may have plantar fasciitis on top of the osteoarthritis which makes my toe joints painful.

Then I went to work and a bit after noon my phone rang and it was the nurse from the thryoid operation. She asked if I might be able to come on Monday since I had let them know I’d be available for cancelled times and I said Yes! even as my workmate was having lunch and I couldn’t ask her. So I got all the details, had to go to another blood tests on Friday and the operation would be on Monday afternoon.

When my colleague came back from lunch I was a bit worried but luckily we have a guy called Jyrki who does 20h/week for library and he had hours left from the winter holiday week when there is no classes and my colleague, Jyrki and my boss Sirkku all agreed that I’d go to the operation now. That sorted I was a bit relieved and much more worried, operations are always tricky imo.

On Monday afternoon hubby drove me to the other side of the Helsinki metropolitan area and I got in to the hospital and so on. The operation went nicely, everybody was very nice, the surgeon was skilled and I woke up without my thyroid glands. Later the nurse told me the surgeon had described them ’quite something’ so I guess I was right in getting them operated. I spent one night at the ward for monitoring and because I’m always quite sick after operations due to my feature of motion and travel sickness. On Tuesday when the lunch stayed inside I was given permit to leave and now I’m two weeks at home on sick leave.

When I left work a week ago Thursday I joked that I’m going on a two week corona isolation by my own choice. Yeah.. Hubby is staying home to work all of next week I think, he was just putting his works together for next week and getting a laptop to take with him.

Middlest son has his matriculation exams right now, still three exams next week to do. I hope they manage to do those without trouble. The good part is that they are seated separately and everyone has their own table so I hope we’ll stay safe. Youngest one has had sore throat all week and has been at home, I’m expecting more info from his school concerning the corona situation.

I’m going to watch tv, read, write and knit and slouch on the sofa with Sirius and family. Youngest one and me already finished 11th season of Doctor Who but I’ve got all Star Trek TOS and then there’s all of Richard’s, Jason’s and Karl’s works to go through. We are well prepared.

 

 

 

 

Winter break

I took this week off since the kids are having their winter break and I’m sick with flu, my throat feels like someone used a cheese grater on it and I have temperature rising. So I haven’t done anything I was going to do and instead I’ve been reading fanfics, doing art decos and watching tv and knitting.  (I’m knitting the cardi’s first sleeve third time since the pattern instruction was weird to say the least and I had to finally just do it after my own head.)

Last week middlest son had the traditional high school ending celebrations known as penkkarit (”benching”). The name comes from earlier days, my dad told us that when he had his penkkarit, the younger students carried them out from school on the study tables.  Nowadays the students have a carnival-type lorry ride in the city centre (it was awesome! One of the best school days ever!) and they throw candy to onlookers. It’s so much fun for everyone!

I and hubby took a few hours off from work, had a lunch together and then walked to the Old church park where it’s easy to see the lorries and kids. These days kids dress up as different characters, there was i.e. Money heist, Moomins and others. On my days we had just warm overalls meant for ice-fishing in the wintertime 😛 The lorries are also covered with sheets indicating which school it’s from, the students have done the artwork themselves.

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Middlest son is on the left side partly turned away, he has the pink Minecraft mask above his head. His best friend since kindergarten is taking pics and Julia was dressed as Little My with orange-red hair in the right side of the pic.
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Leftover candy, middlest son forgot half of his candy to school.. guess who’s been eating them.
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Birthday card for my friend Mareetta

 

On another thing, my two cents about The Stranger. I had some issues with it and I had to watch it twice to be sure they weren’t addressed. This is just my opinion; I really liked the actors but the plot was a bit meh. I must have read too many detective stories as it is.  A list of the things that really bothered me under the cut. Jatka lukemista ”Winter break”

Halfway

through January already. I feel like time is going faster but it might be because I’ve had busy times again.

At my work the courses have begun again and so we’ve got lectures and classes in the library almost every day too. Also finally on Tuesday they called me from the University Hospital about my thyroid and I had an appointment on Thursday with the surgeon. She said they’d like to operate it during this spring and I said that suits me well. Then the nurse interviewed me and I told I’m available for cancelled times so it may be I’ll get the operation quickly but latest in June. She praised me for having filled the pre-questionnaire very effectively and when she asked my BP I had it ready on my journal since I’ve been trying to keep track of it and she was so happy. It was funny. The trip to the hospital isn’t funny because it’s on the other side of the metropolitan area and it takes about one hour and a quarter to get there by public transport but luckily now I can at least take the underground train half of the journey.

On Friday I had two meetings at work, first was for all of our full-time employees and later I took part to the Union reps meeting where I signed the papers to be available in the reps elections. I had thought not to take part but otoh I find it interesting so I said yes when they asked.  After the meeting I met my friend Heidi in the city centre and we had nice coffee and cake.

On the next Friday I’ll be in London to see Uncle Vanya. I’m already so excited that I try not to think about it so I can sleep during the night. My friend said just the same today as we talked about the trip. We’ll be in London only one night but it’s nice to have a mini-holiday. I already have plans for doing a bookshop-run and also some clothesshopping.

I’m knitting a pair of socks to give to Toby Jones, I really liked him in Marvel movies. I have already knit a pair for RA and he has said he doesn’t want them anymore which I can well understand. He only has two feet after all. I’m thinking about buying a copy of Uncle Vanya in Finnish and take it with me to London and get RA’s signature on it, it’d be nice since I have his signature on my The Crucible too.

I’m watching Money Heist while knitting, it’s very good. Only I don’t like they’ve dubbed it in English because their faces don’t match the sentences and it bothers me. We are having dinner soon, I’m so glad middlest son and hubby are cooking because I don’t have the energy right now and middlest wanted to do chicken curry which is his fave dish to cook and he does it well.

 

 

Lazy days

are over and it’s back to work again tomorrow. I did absolutely nothing of the things I was going to and had planned to do all fall and just enjoyed reading, knitting and watching tv and movies. I’m a lazy one. On the other hand I think I needed the quiet time after the hectic fall.

Eldest son comes home from Japan tomorrow evening. I hope he has had good time with his friends there. His new studies into games coding begins right away, in fact he misses one day since he didn’t know he’d apply for the school when they bought the trip. Luckily it’s all right for the school too but I don’t know if I see him before the weekend.

Middlest son has the Army medical tests on Friday and I suppose they’ll too take few hours at least. If he gets through them we’ll probably have a pilot in the family. When he applied into the Air forces they asked if he’d be willing to do a career for 13 years onwards and he said yes. It’s always been his dream to fly a plane.

I finished watching GoT finally, the last season was available now on the Finnish Broadcast company’s site. Since I really loved the novels it took me three tries to get into the tv-series and I’ve never considered them as good as the novels, so much is left out and the plot goes dramatically different (on purpose) after third season. Anyways I thought the ending was good and done in the Martin-way. Now I just need to wait for the last novels to come out (one may hope..).

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Well I should go pack my work things and lunch ready for tomorrow. meh.

 

 

Happy New Year

January is here, with eyes that keenly glow,
A frost-mailed warrior
striding a shadowy steed of snow.
– Edgar Fawcett

 

I just wanted to say Thank you to everyone reading this blog. I know I don’t update enough but that’s just life, it happens.

In the beginning of this year I made a promise to myself to read more and spend less time in social media and I managed quite well, today I’ve read 90 books instead of the 80 I had planned to read. I’m quite happy about it and I’m planning to continue it on 2020. You can see my read books here.

Other thing I need to do on 2020 is to lose weight. I’m turning 50 at the end of September and I don’t want to weight this much then. At the end of May we’re probably celebrating Middlest son’s graduation and since all our relatives and friends will attend I need to do something pretty quickly and I know what it’ll be: low carbs for me since it works best for me.

I still have a week off work left and I’m thinking about having a Hobbit and LOTR marathon while knitting.  I’ve already finished Eldest son’s scarf and my cardi is coming along nicely.

Here are some pics; Sirius is planning her next attack on the Christmas tree (actually she’s been very good with the tree this year), the ice skating Santa I gave to my dad when I was about 7-y-o and now it’s been ice skating in our tree for several years, Middlest son baked a rye bread (I haven’t got the patience to make a root), and the last one is from Dec 27th when we had -5C degrees which was pretty nice. I didn’t mind the sun either, it’s been raining forever here.

 

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to say Merry Christmas to you all since I’ve been so busy. Now I’ve got two weeks off, I get back to work on January 7th which is wonderful. Hubby’s work and boys’ school begin then too.

Here in Finland we have Christmas dinner and  exchange gifts on Christmas Eve. Since we are just with our own family now (me and hubby and two sons) we’re doing these a bit later, our dinner will be served in about an hour and then we’ll see who’s been naughty and who’s been nice. I’m thinking about watching a movie later, now I’m throwing dice between Die Hard I and Fantastic Beasts but I may still change my mind.

Here are some pics. The first one I took on one morning as I left home and was walking to the underground train station, I really like the colors. In the second is a mug of glögg and a star-shaped plum pie which is traditional seasonal treat here and in the last one is out Christmas tree this year. It’s a bit smaller than usually but it’s okay. The cat loves to sleep underneath the tree (the mat is hand-embroidered by hubby’s late mom) and later we’ll burn it as logs in our sauna stove.

Merry Christmas!

Closer to Christmas

It’s been a busy week again but luckily it was a short one.

On Tuesday I met a friend over coffee, she had a training day here and had a moment to spare before getting home to Jyväskylä. It was really nice to meet her and we selected a nice lipstick for her before we had to rush to the trains.

On Wednesday we had a Christmas thingy for all our clients which was quite fun except I had to take part to two meetings. Between them I made a Christmas cracker with couple of grannies and little kiddoes.

The other meeting was a Union thing and it was at the union house which caused some problems for me since I get symptoms of sick building syndrome easily (I got sick with the syndrome at my work and nowadays I use inhalator when I’m at work). It was also a long meeting, over two hours, because of people votings and economy things.

On Thursday I was so tired  that I had a crying fit when I got home. Part of it was due to a grumpy hubby and a teenage son having a discussion but luckily they solved it quickly. I went to bed early and slept almost 12 hours.

Due to Finland’s Independence day on Friday we had the day off work and it was nice. Youngest son went to a trampoline place with his friend and I just watched an Finnish comedy series and did my bujo. Later I listened to the Independence day ball while making the gingerbread dough and baking chocolate and banana muffinses. The Ball at the Presidential palace is the Thing here, people watch it and discuss the gowns etc. Here are some of the nice dresses, texts are in Finnish. Recycling has been a hit this year, The first Lady Jenni Haukio had an old dress with small changes on and a cleaning service company owner had a jacked made of mops and a member of parliament had National Museum’s banderoll made for a dress.

One of the traditions in Finland is to light two candles to the window. It dates back to the civil war time when the two candles meant a safe house for the White side. Since my mom’s two uncle’s were jaegers (trained in Germany) I find it even more important to hold on to that one even thou people think Whites were slaughters because they killed Reds. Reds otoh would’ve wanted Finland to become part of Russia but civil wars always hard, even harder than the other wars where you have a common outer enemy.

Yesterday eldest son came for dinner. He has lost his phone but luckily has an old one so he was able to use e-mail but then hubby bought him a prepaid. He is going to the Lost and Found to see if his phone is there since he forgot it to the ferry on Tuesday after a student cruise night..

I baked gingerbread cookies yesterday and I also made a mud cake with cherries, it was so good! It’s even better today. Hubby cleaned our sauna stove today and found a dead magpie in the pipe.. We were wondering of the slight smell some weeks ago.  I’ve been knitting and doing my bujo, I also ironed the washings while listening to the Stolen boys. Middlest son got a note from the army: he’s going to the medical tests in January concerning the air forces. I’m glad and worried.