humblebrag blankets

September 2, 2014
Free pattern on Ravelry

Free pattern on Ravelry

Here are two current charity campaigns for those of us who occasionally need to justify their knitting obsession. Who wouldn’t love the idea of knitting for children in need? According to my FB feed, little preemie-babies in Finland are now receiving knitted hats and kids here in the US might get a blanket during a hospital stay (one of my friends was raving about it). I need to kiss my preservation charity goodbye and find a knit charity instead! Or combine them.

My six-year-old still clings on to his “nice & cozy” – a blanket that has traveled the world and will most likely disintegrate before he gives it up. And my 9-year-old requested I knit a blanket for her American girl doll (don’t get me started) and wouldn’t hear of me teaching her how to knit (she is busy playing Sims and socializing with Australian teens on some fashion app). Why oh why don’t they teach knitting at schools here in the US?? Feeling like some ancient throwback to socialist times.

So if you are knitting baby stuff check these out. Type A’s can whip out a Twilight-themed 3D illusion blanket (search ‘knitted illusion blanket’ on Pinterest and you’ll see what I mean. INSANITY). The rest of us can think long term and pick a nice soft warm alpaca yarn perhaps, knit a rectangular piece which can be turned into a poncho later on.

Project Linus



Chernobyl by Jaime Pitarch

September 1, 2014


The meteorologist on TV said we were lucky the winds were blowing east (it’s 1986 in Finland right after the Chernobyl disaster FYI). And not to eat mushrooms and berries off the ground. As if anyone paid attention. Yummy black currants!

Originally posted on The Dancing Rest:

Lime wood, aniline, oil and varnish. 35 x 22 x 22 cm.

The work of Jaime Pitarch deals, in the widest sense, with the inability of human beings
to identify with the structures they have created. Their feeling of being lost or
inadequate when dealing with structures such as culture, marriage or society, makes
people constantly and intuitively interpret both the world and themselves.
Pitarch’s work usually involves dismantling and reconstructing items that were either
manufactured or inhabited by humans, or which have helped them to build an idea of
themselves and the world. The resulting objects express people’s feeling of being lost,
and their need to remain standing. This explains the artist’s obsession with order (order
is a prerequisite of interpretation), and the fact that what he does in his work is futile at
times, as well as why the items are shown in balancing, or precarious, positions.

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kastelholm castle

August 31, 2014

My kids don’t know this yet but I’m planning a medieval castle tour for next summer. :) Here are a few snapshots I took at Kastelholm in Åland, off the coast of Finland. Apparently King Eric XIV was imprisoned here and was poisoned to death. !! We visited a few years ago but my daughter may have been too young to appreciate it.

More info here.

helsinki yarn square

August 25, 2014

Processed with Moldiv

war in the cold aisle

August 17, 2014

Amigurumi mouse found on Pinterest

Oh Finland, homeland. Always having a laugh when following the news about relations with the neighboring countries i.e. Sweden and Russia.

This week one of the newspapers was asking readers to rename the import ban cheese intended for the Russian market. The clear winner is “Putin Cheese,” other suggestions included Nato cheese, Molotov cheese basket, and ‘cheese or lack thereof” (“puute” cheese).

Unfortunately all of them sold out immediately (is it the exotic cyrillic alphabet!?) so won’t have a chance to get any when going to Finland this week. :)

Pointless gendering no.2: gendered languages

August 15, 2014


Interesting! Finnish is gender-neutral – in language at least (hän­ means s/he) The Swedes just adopted their gender-neutral pronoun. In addition to Hon (She) and han (he) — *hen*! Love it.

Originally posted on World Gendering:

Now it might seem absurd to question the language system of millions of people, but there is, I hope, reason behind the madness. Hear me out.

Before going any further, however, it should be made clear that there are three main language systems used in the world today:

  1. Gendered (e.g. Romance languages) – animate and inanimate objects are divided into different genders (commonly two, but sometimes more).
  2. Natural gender (e.g. English) – only pronouns used to express the gender of animate beings.
  3. Genderless (e.g. Turkish, Finnish) – no distinction between genders in nouns, i.e. hän­ refers to ‘he’ and ‘she’ in Turkish.

The fact that people get by perfectly well speaking genderless and natural gender languages suggests that gendering nouns is not necessary. Sure, in some cases, gender adds clarity in that it can draw a distinction between two nouns. For example, ‘The jar [m] fell into the bowl [f]…

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September Retreat at Lago di Bolsena, Italy

August 13, 2014

On that note, moving along here ~ slowly but surely. Last things first – as I may have mentioned, a dear friend of mine has realized her life-long dream and bought a villa in Italy. Just like that! If you ever watch House Hunters International you know that people do this kind of stuff ALL THE TIME.

The villa is situated in the Lazio region (betw Siena and Rome) high above Lago di Bolsena with stunning views of the lake and the mountains and has a pool and beautiful gardens within a 22-acre resort (nine hectar – amazing).

Being super-efficient, she and her boyfriend have planned the first “feel good life” event with meditation, workshops etc. at their retreat already. Mark your calendar for September 28 – Oct 3, 2014 and let me know if you wish to reserve a spot.

For future ref, the house has room for 10 people (mostly double rooms w/ baths). There is a large Italian kitchen and a library with open fire places and terraces to enjoy the sun and the views.

We’ll be planning trips to Rome, Etruscan tours, food/wine excursions, cooking, painting, family outings etc. Or one can just relax by the pool-side.

Stay tuned as I’m sure to post more pictures/info in the near future. And if you are interested in finding out more about the September event (sans kids) or planning a future outing please send me a (confidential) message in the comments section below. :)

Grazie! 😘


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