Brisbane. You warm, sunny city I slowly fall for every day. You are truly amazing. You have given me so many memories and experiences that I would never have been able to gain back home. You have made it possible for me to meet my wonderful partner and all my new friends. For this, I am sincerely grateful. I know Brisbane is one of the places I will always call my second home.
Despite my love for Brisbane, I know that I eventually want to return to my country in the north. When this will happen depends on many factors. I need the right Australian visa that actually allows me to move abroad. Jarryd must feel ready to teake this exciting, stressful, overwhelming and truly amazing leap. I have to admit, my nostalgic and Sweden loving heart has secretly been thinking and planning this move a little bit in advance. This is definitely not written in stone, but one of my favourite cities in Sweden is without a doubt Göteborg (Gothenburg) and I believe this could potentially one day be the city where we decide to live. Therefore, I want to show you some photos from two occasions when Jarryd and I visited Gothenburg!
During Christmas 2017, we made a visit to Liseberg which is the largest amusement park in Scandinavia. As a child and annoying teenager, I spent a lot of time here with my family and friends. My hometown Borås is only one hour away and the trains stop just outside of the park. There are green bunnies running around the park and you can make a visit to the Bunny land (important, if you are expecting real bunnies or something from the Playboy magazine, you will be disappointed).
Since it is basically dark from 3pm during the winter, I unfortunately do not have any daytime photos. But we were happy anyway because the best thing about Christmas at Liseberg is the cosy Christmas lights.
After we had played the chocolate wheel, inspected the Christmas market and drunk too much mulled wine (non-alcoholic eh), it was time to leave Liseberg for this time. Next time, I will force poor Jarryd to join me in the FlumRide.
Approximately five days later, we managed to survive Christmas Eve and had made it to Christmas Day. Unlike Australia, we do not really celebrate anything on Christmas Day (all celebrations happen on Christmas Eve) and many people are using this day as an escape from family, relatives, responsibilities, musts, traditions and expectations. Christmas Day is actually one of the biggest party days in Sweden. Of course I felt obligated to show Jarryd how this is done, and there is no place better than Andra Långgatan! The best party/pub street in Gothenburg.
We arrived by bus from Borås and we met up with a bunch of my friends who were already in Gothenburg getting mentally ready for a crazy night out. But before shots, beers and margaritas, we decided to make a short stop to get some food and let the warmth return to our cold toes. I ordered a mandatory Irish coffee.
Down Under Bar was one of many places we visited that night. I have an Aussie friend in Sweden who really wanted to show Jarryd this magical place where you can find Victorian Bitter and kangaroo pie (if I remember correctly).
It was a looong night and this is the last photo taken which summarizes the evening quite well. We magically managed to get the last tram and train back to Borås. This was Jarryd’s first, but not last, visit to Gothenburg.
It was finally time to show Jarryd beautiful Gothenburg in summertime. We had already been to the archipelago on the west coast, so it was time for some city life. Again, we arrived to Gothenburg by bus from Borås.
Trams everywhere! Luckily we found the right tram and met up with Siri and Johan for a longed-for lunch together.
Strolling around the city and enjoying the Swedish summer.
An old video I found on my phone, and even though it is not from this Summer, it does show you a little bit from the streets of Gothenburg.
Of course I had to visit at least one second hand shop while visiting the big city and I really fell in love with this painting. It reminds me so much of Sweden and one of my old art teachers.
Mandatory Fika in the old neighbourhood Haga.
Just like our last adventure in Gothenburg, we ended up on the party/pub street Andra Långgatan. Jarryd feeling extra Swedish on a pub called The Danish.
When we had enjoyed the last sunlight of the day, we moved to the restaurant where Daniella and Viktor were waiting for us. We enjoyed a dinner with massive pizzas and yummy drinks.
Hopefully we will have the opportunity to visit Gothenburg soon again, and hopefully one day this could potentially be a place we will call home!
One of the luxuries of living in beautiful Paddington is all the amount of antique, vintage and second hand shops you can find here. One of the shops I regularly visit is the Empire Revival (Paddington Antique Centre) on 167 Latrobe Terrace. The building is a heritage-listed cinema built in 1929. The atmosphere makes this place a spot for antiques and vintage. You can find anything from jewellery, fashion, furniture and homewares. Here are some photos of my favourites from my last visit!
This is probably my favourite section. 1920’s party dresses and a wide range of different jewellery and brick-a-brack. It also seems like the prices in this part are a little bit cheaper compared to the rest of the shop.
A lot of different kitchenware, glass, porcelain, chinaware, and so on. The prices can at times be a bit expensive, but I have managed to find reasonably priced tarte forms, crystal glasses and bowls, and chinaware.
I found a pair of candle holders, but unfortunately I do not have any space for these at home at the moment. If you are interested, these can be found in one of the kitchenware sections.
A great collection of old bottles and glass containers.
Beautiful fabrics and patterns!
Next visit, I will be looking for a new bedside lamp.
Women’s clothing section, a wide range of different styles from different eras.
Of course there is a Scandinavian design corner! I always spend a lot of time here, wishing I had more space at home and a very, very big wallet…
These photos are just showing a small fraction of the whole shop, so be prepared to spend at least one hour strolling around to really get the chance to find the vintage and second hand nuggets. Due to the location of the shop, it is very easy to access other vintage/second hand shops in the area by just continuing down Latrobe Terrace towards the city. Enjoy your shopping!
Since I have not been blogging for the last months, I thought I could show you some bits and pieces from the last weeks before spring arrived. Pretty much every day started in the sofa on the front porch, which is the warmest place in the house during the morning hours. This winter has been really cold and the best way to start a new day is definitely in the sun with a cup of coffee. This is also the time when I check my plant and making sure the possum has not been taking any bites of my babies.
I have been wandering around in the city now when I have had more hours to spare. This photo was taking on my stroll to Roma Street Parklands.
Jarryd and I had a date night and we decided to try Creole Soul Kitchen in Spring Hill. We started with duck wings with a Louisiana pepper jelly sauce. Then we had chicken and sausage gumbo for mains. Really delicious food and affordable prices!
Paddington has been looking beautiful, just as always!
I attended the event Christmas in July Pub Crawl and the theme was Christmas in your home country. I was dressed as Santa Lucia (Saint Lucia) and it was my friend Johanna and I who represented Swedish Christmas. We managed to visit 10 out of 12 pubs and it was an amazing day and night!
I made a visit to the Sunshine Coast and it was almost warm enough for a swim. I also finally had the opportunity to try the Scandinavian Cafe and of course I had to get a glass of O’boy. Very nostalgic! This is what I drank every morning for almost 18 years.
Pub Choir at Jarryd’s job (yes, it is exactly what it sounds like, choir singing at the pub). We sang “You’re The Voice” by John Farnham. After the singing, we hang out with the colleagues of Jarryd and had a couple of beers. This is the view from Jarryd’s workplace.
One Sunday hike at the Gold Creek Reservoir.
We had lunch in Brookfield and I chose a fresh couscous salad.
Last Sunday, it was time for the annual Scandinavian Festival here in Brisbane. A lot of Scandinavian food and it was also possible to do rune readings.
One of the signs that winter is over and that spring has finally arrived! I am excited to see what spring will bring and I am really ready for it. That was a bunch of photos, hope you enjoyed!
A couple of weekends ago, Jarryd and I decided to leave a Friday stressful Brisbane and drive three hours northwest. We ended up at Rangemore Estate, a sheep farm run by Dave, where we had booked a cabin for the weekend. We also shared the property with his 200 sheep and goats, two dogs, one alpaca and wild kangaroos. The view from our front porch was incredible and in the distance, you could see the beginning of the Bunya Mountains, which was the main destination on the Saturday.
But first it was time for breakfast and I had coco pops as entree while Dave was cooking our delicious omelettes (all breakfast was included in the accommodation price and Dave was a great and generous cook).
The sheep and goats were also a hungry bunch and made sure everyone on the property could hear their disappointed screams when the breakfast was one hour late. Dave came to the rescue and gave his woolly babies the anticipated breaky.
Taking a stroll on the farm and constantly hoping it is just a tree branch on the ground and not a brown snake…
The guarding alpaca, taking its role very seriously and always made sure to give you the angry stares when petting the sheep.
Kevin and I.
We left for the Bunya Mountains after breakfast and decided to do the longer hike in the national park. We swapped the dry farmlands for green jungle.
Bunya Mountains also has a surplus of wallabies. There are roughly 20,000 wallabies in the area according to Dave and you really had to watch your step to avoid stepping on one.
One yellow chair, Joey, mama wallaby, parrot and tourists in one photo. Score!
Jarryd found a new friend. The poor, ugly bush turkey in the background did not get any love from the tourists.
On our way back to Dave and his sheep farm, we made a stop at Coomba Falls outside of the village Maidenwell.
This is one of those perfect places to spend a warm summer Saturday.
We managed to get back to the cabin and the sheep before the sunset. This was enjoyed with cold Coronas and homemade dinner. We said goodbye to Dave and all the animals on Sunday morning and made a quick stop in Toowoomba. Responsibilities were calling in Brisbane, but we felt ready for a new week in the big city after a relaxing and calm weekend on the farm.
Before I can start this weekend with a good conscious, I have a confession to make. I do not have a great knowledge of Australian art or artists and I can count the number of visits to art galleries and exhibitions on the fingers of one hand. Although, this is about to change, because I have finally planned my next art exhibition field trip.
“Margaret Olley: A Generous Life” is a free exhibition at GOMA featuring more than 100 works by Margaret Olley who is one of Australia’s most loved artists. She had a love of travel and a passion for still life, interiors and portraiture. Olley moved to Brisbane in 1935 and “A Generous Life” highlights these formative years in the family home in Hill End.
I do feel a bit harsh saying this, but it is quite rare for me to feel a connection with Australia due to my Swedish heritage. I know this will eventually get better with time, but a part of me is scared of the fact that maybe I never will feel completely connected to this amazing country. However, when I saw Olley’s paintings featuring Brisbane, I did feel that fuzzy, embracing feeling of affiliation and familiarity. The art is soothing and warmly, just how you want your own home to feel like. And this is the second reason why I really enjoy her art. Every interior painting is like an inspiration picture on my vision board or Pinterest. The vintage carafes and cake stands, beautiful flower arrangements and handpicked fruit from the garden. Hopefully my Queenslander will look like one of Olley’s creations one day.
Do you have a favourite Australian artist? Who and why? Please share, I want all your tips!
September. The beginning of Autumn. And like always here in Australia, I feel foolishly pranked by the seasons. I am waiting for the crispy chills in the mornings and for the mushrooms to grow in the forests. I am waiting for the leaves to turn yellow on the spidery branches, getting weaker for each day until the turbulent wind rips them off the only home they know and leaving them on the ground to moulder away. I am waiting for a growing darkness that will sneakily steal my D-vitamin until the day when the sun decides to return back to the northern parts of the globe. I am waiting for school or work to start again after a long, relaxed break of longed-for summer.
But here in Brisbane, my new home, everything is the exact opposite. More insects are crawling around and butterflies are flying around like drunk teenagers on LIME scooters looking for mates. The warm long black has now been swapped for a glass of ice latte with ice cold milk. The possums are more noisy than usual and happily run extra laps on the metal roof during the earliest morning hours. Every evening, I remove one blanket or one piece of clothing to avoid sweating on my newly bought summer bed sheets.
It is not much, but I have learnt to distinguish the small contrasts between the season that was, and the season that we are currently in. Here, September is spring. It will never be the same September I am used to and grew up with. It is, however, without a doubt also a new start. A beginning. And I believe this is why I have been longing so much for September. I need a start of something new, even though I am not completely sure what it would be. Maybe new work responsibilities? A new place to rent? A new hobby? A new phone? A new roadtrip to plan? A new plant (if you are reading this Jarryd, I am joking. A little bit. Maybe we can talk about this when you come home from work?).
Even though this post contains much more questions than answers, the first days of spring have been good and I feel content. How does September usually make you feel? Is there a season or a month that usually means a new beginning to you?
Welcome September, I am happy you are back and I am ready for you!
Like every Sunday, I try to seize the last day of freedom before it’s time to dive into the new week of stress and responsibilities. This usually means I try to leave everything that reminds me of my ordinary life and instead focus on exploring. One Sunday in June was no exception, so we ended up in Redcliffe.
Cold, cold water, but it was good preparation for our trip to Sweden (which meant even colder water, uugghh).
Happy Lily doing her ‘Happy Lily Dance’ on the jetty.
This sailor was happy when it stopped raining and the sun finally came out.
The Recliffe harbor really reminded me of Sweden and that was a good teaser before our long journey to the land in the north.
Today it’s time for the third and final State of Origin game. I’ll be preparing snacks and blankets for this cold, but exciting night! And yes, both Jarryd and I noticed the dirty lens…
More random photos taken in my homemade photo booth. All the items have been bought at local antique and OP shops. Our house is unfortunately too cramped to make it look decent on the inside. Therefore, you will only get the individual items at the moment.
After a busy work period, it was time for a change…
I had a spontaneous haircut! I haven’t touched my hair for the past nine months and I finally managed to find a free spot in my calendar and some extra spare cash. Oh, I’m so happy getting rid of that old possum nest I used to call my hair. New hair, happy Lily!
It wasn’t only time for a new haircut, it was also time for new flowers in the bedroom. The eyes and the nose are enjoying the Lillies.
On Sunday it was once again time for the weekly Bardon Markets! A small, cosy market at the Norman Buchan Park with a dozen stands, yummy breakfast, live music, cricket game in the background and friendly ponies.
My breakfast contained coffee and a vegan sausage with sauerkraut. YUM! Is there a better way to end the week?