Winter is officially here and the hot, hot, hot and humid summer has once again left us. It’s not only a change in seasons, but I’ve also made some life changing decisions the last two weeks. I’ll tell you more about this very soon! However, let me show you some snippets from an ordinary week in May.
Good morning Brisbane! Many sunny days lately which have made me miss the rain a bit.
Starting too many mornings with a flat white and banana bread. Very yummy but not good for the wallet.
Just a one minute stroll from the office.
Some afternoon treats and a coffee is always in place after a long day at work.
Bye bye Albion!
Catching the train to Newstead…
… for some indoor climbing!
My weak fingers and toes were a bit overwhelmed after the climb (plus arms, legs, stomach, back, yeah everything except my ears).
Merrille and Jarryd were like two cute spider monkeys climbing around and looking super strong!
Went back home for some Taco Friday. Mmmm… Just nostalgic flavours that you never seem to get tired of. Maybe the taste of familiarity is extra needed when living far away from family and in a different country away from everything that used to be home.
The mandatory taco fillings (according to Lily).
Is it really a Friday if you don’t eat tacos?
After taco Friday came Saturday and that meant washing and drying of clothes. Say hi to our ugly balcony, the balcony we are a bit embarrassed about but at the same time so happy to have. If it wasn’t for the ugly balcony, we would probably not have our nice balcony.
Saturday mood and sunnies on! Time for breaky.
Good morning Three Monkeys.
And bello to you, Spanish breakfast.
Heading into the CBD to visit VG (aka nerd dungeon).
Bought some D&D stuff.
So. Much. Awesomeness
Fish lane looking beautiful with all the fairy lights.
Ending the day with some more nerdiness – watching Secrets of the Tower of London. I think I have the same taste of TV shows as a 70-year old, but I’m 100% fine with that!
Now I’m going to continue reading The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared. Hope all of you are having a great weekend!
Top number one. Uno. Ett. I wish for this pandemic to come to an end and for life going back to “normal”. I’m so sick of not being able to catch a flight and go home to Sweden. Don’t get me wrong, I feel extremely privileged for living in one of few countries where covid has been managed very well and where there are few cases. However, for someone who has been homesick since 2019, it’s starting to get a bit challenging for sure. I read somewhere that there’s a chance (probably quite small, but still!) that Australia will allow tourists in 2022. This means my family finally can come and visit me here in Brisbane (mum, dad and Natha, if you read this, can you please remember to bring some Djungelvrål and snus hihi). They’re already preparing for their visit and are doing a diving course this weekend. I promise I’ll show you where you can find all beautiful fish and turtles (even though I won’t be diving with you). Even if I’m so looking forward to having my family over, I can’t wait until I can go back to Sweden and spend some time with friends and family whilst enjoying the Swedish cities and forest. AND DON’T LET ME START WITH THE SWEDISH FOOD AND CANDY!
Daily evening walks in the forest.
Swimming in the lakes.
Picking blueberries in my pyjamas.
Tracks on the meadow for some after work skiing.
More blueberry picking with family because there’s too much berries to pick in just one day.
Having a coffee by the stream and keeping an eye out for moose.
Having an amazing lunch on the west coast together with my sister (and teasing her for not eating fish hihi).
Enjoying the views whilst skiing in the forest.
Playing board games with the family (and hopefully beating them).
Visiting Ramnaparken and looking at all the old buildings.
Trying to take an intimidating photo with Jonte and Tilda at Nella’s vest party, but failing horribly.
More strolls in the forest (hopefully meeting some badger babies).
Going to Liseberg and seeing everyone win chocolate.
Enjoying all the four seasons.
I’m wishing for a farm somewhere in (or close to) the forest. I’m looking for properties on a daily basis and I’m mostly looking for places in Sweden. The prices here in Australia are just ridiculous compared to back home, especially if you’re prepared to live in the rural areas. I want to be able to see moose, deer, foxes, rabbits and badgers every day!
Wouldn’t mind this torp (croft or homestead in English?). Falu red paint and beautiful barns.
And why not a small boat house or sauna by the lake?
Renovated but still keeping the old details such as old style windows.
Old barn with the original windows.
Gravel road leading the way to the farm (salt and 4WD a must in winter though).
More falu read paint.
And even MORE falu red paint (can you see a pattern here?).
No need for two story houses. Let’s keep it charming and cosy.
However, to fit all people, maybe a two story house is a good idea in the end…
Meadows and forests in the background is a must (and yes, there’ll be a good mower on the farm).
The falu red paint will bring extra Christmas feeling after snowfall.
My third wish goes hand in hand with my dream about a farm. I wish for animals like sheep, goats, alpacas and maybe llamas (depending on how much we’ll be in need of increased security). In both Sweden and Norway, I’ve always been around sheep or goats. During my summers in Norway, one of my work tasks was taking care of the camping sheep or goats. By the end of each summer, the camping sheep or goats would recognise my voice and run towards me whenever I was calling for them. I can’t wait to have my own pne day!
Hi and please don’t attack me.
I don’t know who was the most curious, Fleur or the sheep?
Parent llamas guarding baby llama.
Ear scratches every day after work.
Best feeling in the world.
My fourth wish is plants that are actually surviving (preferably thriving). This wish applies to both personal and office plants. I can barely keep plants alive anymore and it seems like I constantly overwater under underwater them. Everything on the balcony except a couple of succulents are dead or dying. Some of the indoor plants are still looking OK, but they haven’t really been growing for a while. I need my plant mojo to come back.
More green and less yellow/brown, please?
A box full of treats. I’m trying to dry some flowers at the moment, will see how they turn out!
TBT when we actually could grow flowers (while we still lived in Paddington).
My very first pilea peperomioides pups.
More succulents for the balcony from now on.
Those were the days when we had a small patch of garden where we could take care of our plants (and a herb garden!).
Our new herb garden in South Brisbane before it turned into a herb graveyard.
Haven’t bought a bouquet of flowers in ages. Need to do this again soon.
I’m so keen for a Midsummer celebration. My fifth wish is that boarders will magically open before June this year and that Covid will be long gone and events would be allowed again. If this wish comes true, I’ll get my butt on a plane and celebrate a traditional Midsummer in Sweden. I’ll see how this year’s Midsummer turns out, but I can promise you already that I’ll be consuming fermented herring and potatoes. Yum!
Midsummer celebration at Ramnaparken. Do the frog dance people!
Hoping Jarryd will be taking Swedish traditions seriously after watching middle aged people jumping like frogs around a Midsummer pole (which we all know what it looks like… If you don’t, scroll down a bit and don’t giggle!).
Dad sitting on a rock, under a tree after watching the frog dance.
Celebrating Midsummer in Sjömarken with friends. Here you can see the famous Midsummer pole.
Preparing for the Midsummer lunch, but also being ready with the heater of course (interesting fact: some Midsummer eve’s have been cooler than Christmas Eve’s).
Fermented herring, potatoes, sour cream and snaps. MANDATORY heartburn!
500 games after the Midsummer lunch (great way of forgetting the heartburn for a minute or two). People always surprise with their hidden game talents.
Flower crowns, friends and Midsummer vibes.
8pm and time for the frog dance and more games. The game “the bear is sleeping” (translation?) was on the agenda.
10pm and it feels like it’s afternoon. No wonder why Midsummer is one of the most magical days of the year in Sweden.
These are five things I have been thinking a lot about lately. Many of the wishes have been dreams of mine for a very long time, and it’ll be very exciting to see what the future holds. But now it’s time to finish my tea, brush my tea and get to bed. I have my second training shift with RSPCA tomorrow!
Hi everyone! It’s already Wednesday evening and I’m about to start playing Carcassone with Jarryd in 24 minutes. Before that, I thought I could share a couple of snaps from Monday, Tuesday and today (Wednesday). This week started with sunshine and an empty fish lane on my way to work. Fish Lane is definitely one of the best things about South Brisbane. Saccharomyces and Wandering Cooks are two of my Brisbane favourites.
Eventually I made it to the office and like every morning, I have a look outside to see how our succulents are doing. This beauty is absolutely striving in its new home.
It even has a couple of plant babies! This is one of few office plants that are doing well at the moment. The majority of the plants are peace lilies and we also have one large fiddle leaf fig. However, all of them are Struggling with a capitol S. The fiddle leaf fig is always covered in spider mites and I never seem to give it the right amount of water. I’ve been moving it around a bit to find a good spot, but it keeps getting sad. All the peace lilies are also full of bugs and I can’t remember how many times I’ve sprayed them with the anti-bug spray. I’ve noticed they really enjoy being outside though, so I try to leave them outside during the weekends (which means I need to keep praying that the possum will leave them alone and not try to eat them). If you have any suggestions regarding office plants (need to handle some draft and shade), please let me know! I need all the tips.
It started raining a lot on Tuesday (yesterday) and like most Tuesdays, I was waiting for the train on the station waiting to get back to the city after my 7.5 hours at the office. Why can’t my hands be as steady as my newly purchased tripod? 🙁
Hello hello from the office administrator! I’m so happy I brought my raincoat from Sweden. I’m really ready for the crazy Queensland storms.
One day I will sit on this train on my way to the airport towards new adventures! Can’t wait until we are able to go back to Sweden again for a loooong visit!
Today. Wednesday. And rain. I have 8 more minutes until we will start playing Carcassone. We had Indian again from our local Indian restaurant 2 minutes away from the apartment (convenient, but so dangerously close for two lazy people like us). I always get the hot curries which is a true love/hate. It’s so delicious, but the heart burn afterwards is not a game. Ok, only 3 minutes left until it’s time to beat Jarryd’s ass in Carcassone. Wish me luck everyone and I’ll see you soon again!
Today has been one of those days when nothing goes to plan. Or maybe it’s the whole week? Or even the last couple of weeks? I guess many of you have had that kind of period when everything from work, cooking dinner, watching Netflix and exercising just feel… draining? I’m waiting for the flow to come back. Until then, I’ll live with the fact that everything’s not going to be as easy as expected. And that’s ok too.
I just got my Chicken Tikka Masala take away. I decided to go to our local Indian restaurant since Jarryd is away for dinner with the boys and I’m too uninspired to cook for myself. Here they know my name by heart and know I always want a garlic name by the side. It’s my comfort food. Hope all of you are doing amazing and are enjoying your Wednesday!
First lockdown of 2021 and first week back at work completed! It has been a couple of hectic days getting used to just staying home and also being back at work (working from home of course). It hasn’t been the most eventful week, but that’s good. I feel like I have gained so much energy! Jarryd and many of my friends starting working already on the 4th of January, so it has been a bit lonely especially when the last couple days of the holidays was spent in lockdown. Despite uneventful week, I have a couple of photos to share with you.
Our fridge died one day before lockdown and luckily we managed to buy a new one the same day. Since it wouldn’t be delivered until the following day, we had to survive with just our esky.
Face masks required when leaving the apartment otherwise you would get fined. Just when we were making our own face masks out of one of Jarryd’s old singlets (every store was out of face masks when I did my mandatory lockdown shopping :(), our friends asked if we wanted two of their face masks. We said YES PLEASE! After two hours we picked up our new face masks from the mailbox.
Our new fridge finally showed up. The luxurious feeling when you have a properly working fridge after using an esky for 24 hours is just fabulous.
Jarryd was watching Australia vs India.
I decided to nibble on some snacks instead of watching cricket. Good choice in my opinion!
Potato chips, Sicilian green olives and honey glazed cashew nuts. Yum!
The living room turned into a discotheque.
Jarryd decided to join me on the balcony when the cricket game was over. Who won? I have no idea. I don’t know if either team has won yet? I think they are still playing? I need to ask Jarryd what’s going on. Weird game. After Jarryd tried to explain the game, we decided to just watch the sunset. Makes more sense than cricket.
Then the sky turned purple. It’s always so much fun to sit and watch the people in the apartment building across us during lockdown. It’s almost like a large doll house.
The discotheque continued in the living room. Is dancing allowed in your own apartment?
I was taking the opportunity to photograph William Jolly bridge while walking to the supermarket (during the lockdown it was OK go to the supermarket as long as you were wearing a face mask, and it’s still compulsory to wear masks at the supermarket).
Beautiful Brisbane! My home away from home.
So empty everywhere. Now when everything’s almost back to ‘normal’, I kind of miss the quietness of the lockdown.
One of my lunches while working from home. Had so much leftover take away (yes we have been a bit slack). Watching Gilmore Girls while eating when there are no colleagues to chat with. I’ll be back at the office on the 27th of Jan after the Australia Day weekend. So looking forward to it! I need my routines which especially include going to and leaving work. I actually miss my daily train commute (and I miss the microwave at the office soooo much).
Yesterday was Friday which was celebrated with a large mug of coffee in the afternoon. Today it is obviously Saturday and I have been cleaning, doing the laundry and blasting the AC in the apartment. It’s meant to be 36 degrees today (a storm is on its move towards Brisbane) 🙁 Jarryd is away helping a friend moving houses. I’m not jealous hehe. Later today I’ll meet up with an old friend for an afternoon beer (and avoiding the rain at the same time). Jarryd and I also have plans to meet up with friends at Range Brewery for some craft beers and pizzas later tonight.
Only 1.5 days left of 2020 – woho! I have spent my time painting, cleaning the apartment, taking care of our plant babies, buying a new wardrobe and preparing for our New Year’s camping. I feel mentally prepared for 2021!
Jarryd and I had the exact same idea as half of Brisbane – we need to go to IKEA for their clearance! We were in a desperate need of a wardrobe since we have absolutely no storage at home. How can just two people accumulate so much stuff?
It felt great coming back to IKEA – this is the place that feels most like home (I always have to hold my tears back when I see the photos of Sweden in the entrance <3).
Mandatory IKEA selfie on the elevator. But where did my eyebrows go?!
IKEA reached full capacity and there was no place at the restaurant to sit down and eat. Since meatballs are mandatory for all IKEA visits, we decided to get takeaway. The meatballs get 5 out of 5 moose.
We managed to get furniture, food and our sanities back home to South Brisbane. But something was missing before we could start working on the new wardrobe.
A beer! I decided to have a milk stout from Brouhaha Brewery. Tasty!
Is that Luke from Gilmore Girls? No, it’s just Jarryd in his ‘putting-together-IKEA-furniture’ look 🙂
Jarryd drank one of his IPAs.
2 hours later and the wardrobe is finally finished! It’s a bit crooked but we love it anyway. Now we finally have somewhere to store all our camping, Christmas and masquerade stuff.
Tuesday started very relaxing on the sofa with some jazz in the background.
I double-checked to see if my eyebrows were back and thankfully they were!!
We drove to Woolloongabba where we were going to get one more plant baby. Heather and Lukas gave Jarryd and I a gift card at the Grow Centre. We were so excited!
They had a really good selection of indoor plants and we found one that would come home with us.
This is Happy Gilmore which is a Happy Plant (Dracaena fragrans ‘Massangeana’). Welcome to your new home!
I was also taking care of the outdoor plants on the balcony.
Our climbers which used to be climbing the bedroom wall.
My mother Pilea Peperomioides plant. It has been a bit sad lately, so I have been moving around and hopefully found a brighter spot for it. Please survive!
After a week with a lot of food, I was craving something easy. I made pumpkin soup and added some shredded parmesan and parsley.
After lunch, I decided something had to be done with our empty bedroom wall since we have moved around a lot of plants. I found this frame and will do something fun with it and hang it on the wall. But that is on the to-do-list for 2021.
This will be my surprised face if the weather actually decides to be good on New Year’s Eve. The weather forecast on BOM is looking a bit crap unfortunately. We will celebrate New Year’s with a bunch of our friends camping. Jarryd and I will be sleeping in our tent, but luckily there is a shed and “toilet” in case if the weather gets too bad. It will be super cosy leaving the city for a bit and just relaxing in the nature together with friends.
Hope all of you have an amazing New Year’s and I’ll see you in 2021!
2020 is almost over. The last couple of months have been super busy with work, birthday parties and Christmas celebration. Lets look back in the mirror of the past and see what has been happening!
The bedroom before the majority of our plans decided to give up 🙁 Can you imagine how easy life would be if plants could softly whisper what they actually want?
We two cute visitors at the office. Don’t they look like two miniature wolf hounds?
Had my last cup of coffee in my sheep cup for this year. This cup always remind me that I need to save money for my future alpacas.
The Jacaranda blossomed for two days and then created a purple mess with all the dead leaves. Still worth it though!
Hi hi Summer – you are very beautiful!
I have been checking out my and Jarryd’s future home. The boat is unfortunately not included but we will survive 🙂 It would be the perfect place for a Halloween party.
I have been eating soooo much Spanish breakfast at Three Monkeys in West End. Jarryd and I have now decided that we need to make this ourselves! We are still trying to find a good chicken tocino recipe, so please share if you happen to have one collecting dust somewhere in your kitchen drawer.
This year’s Christmas tree was looking a bit more minimalistic than usual. This year we didn’t have any spare chopstick to help keeping the star straight.
Mandatory Donald Duck at 3pm on Christmas Eve together with a blurry lussekatt.
Christmas Day was spent in Toowoomba with Jarryd’s family. Jarryd and Zoe walked the neighbourhood ensuring everyone was properly celebrating Christmas. We also saw five black cockatoos and one blind sausage dog.
After spending Christmas Day and Boxing Day in Toowoomba, we hit the road and made a visit to the small town of Esk. Hello Esk!
Lars Andersen, Esk’s favourite Dane. I was a little bit disappointed that they didn’t serve Smørrebrød at the café in Lars’ old crib.
It took us 10 minutes to walk through the city centre, but that was OK. The 35 degrees made us miss the AC in the car…
After a sweaty visit to Esk, we made it to the Wivenhoe dam. Jarryd inspected the puddle…
And suddenly turned into a frog. Nooo he just checked the water temperature which was hot hot hot because it was still 35 degrees. I told Jarryd to jump into the water but he strongly disagreed. Bad frog!
Jarryd told me that this is the dam that caused the Brisbane flooding in 2011 when they had to use kayaks to go to the supermarket. Today the dam was looking a bit empty though, so I will probably have to catch the train to work unfortunately.
Hi from the Aussie Tom Cruise and the black widow. I do regret my choice of wearing a black dress in the middle of Summer in Esk </3
And poooffff – I turned into a frog as well. Hihi no, I was just taking photos of mushrooms.
Hello mushroom! It is weird for a Scandinavian like me to see you around Christmas time. Are there any wild mushrooms in Australia that you can eat?
Next time I’ll bring my swimmers and join the pelicans and swans in the dam.
Now we’re back in Brisbane and air conditioning. It’s time to plan New Year and I’m so keen for 2021. Now it’s time for a milk stout and tomorrow the electrician is coming over to ensure we don’t electrocute ourselves while using the washing machine #winningatlife
It’s here. Spring arrived once again. The sun is burning the skin during the lunch break and the leggings used for the last couple of weeks are starting to feel sticky against my pale legs. I am looking forward to warmer nights spent outside with friends in a lush garden with feisty possums. I am looking forward to that first day at the beach, there are flower festivals happening and people just seem more keen for life in general. With eased restrictions here in Queensland, it means we can have our traditional events such as Oktoberfest, Halloween and Thanksgiving.
Spring is not only sunshine, laughter, beautiful flowers and freckles. Spring is also the season of sneezes, runny noose and eyes. Not only am I feasting on antihistamine, I also managed to get a proper cold which has paused the outside world for almost a full work week. With a runny nose and stubborn cough feeling like paper cuts in an already sore throat it was time to do my first ever Covid test. With a negative result, I have happily tried to recover from this farmer’s cold which my childhood doctor always would call it.
Before sickness and the arrival of spring, Jarryd and I drove four hours southwest to Stanthorpe for a weekend where we did hiking in the Girraween National Park.
I guess I was not the only one finding it difficult to fill the days with excitement during the Covid-19 lockdown. Spending a large amount of time in one apartment was a challenge, but this is an experience I will definitely never forget. Today I am appreciating a cup of coffee at the the cafe. Commuting by train again. Seeing colleagues and friends face to face.
I am so happy the restrictions have eased, but there will be a couple of things I will try to take with me when life goes back to the new normal. Firstly, I have had a lot of time to take care of the plants. Jarryd realised we had 50+ plants and we have for a long time needed more storage space for our green babies. We decided to go to IKEA and get the cheapest shelf which would be the new home to some of the plants without a permanent spot in the apartment. We also managed to fill the shelf with other junk we never can throw away (#girlfriendisahoarder).
It has been getting a lot cooler here in Brisbane the last couple of weeks (we are currently using a heater at home…) and this came as a shock to me and to the outdoor plants. Of course I could not let them freeze their butts off outside, so I took the most vulnerable ones inside and kept them close to our sunny window next to the ugly balcony (where we never hangout, instead it is only used for storing recycling and drying clothes). Here are some of the seedlings that absolutely love being inside. We also tried to put seeds in eggshells together with some soil. They seemed to really like it, which really is a plus since it means less plastic and more organic!
We got a fish tank from Jarryd’s mother and our first thought was to get a couple of fish. When we realised how much work and responsibility it requires, we decided it would not be worth spending that much time with a pet you cannot cuddle. Instead we turned it into a terrarium. After spending a couple of hours at Bunnings and the local plant nursery, we got everything needed for the different layers and beautiful plants. The plants are growing bigger for every day, so I need a plan for what to do when they are getting outside the wrapping paper hmm…
I guess my mind has been focused on plants lately, because that has basically been the only thing I have been painting as well. I will eventually make a post showing you the paintings I have at home and some of the stuff I am currently working on.
The only time I was outside during the lockdown was when I had to go to the grocery store or when I went for walks. I like that Brisbane has so many bridges! They all have their own personality and appearance. This is one of my favourites, William Jolly bridge in South Brisbane.
Lastly, the lockdown has been a great opportunity to read all the books I usually find hard to prioritise when there are a million other things happening during the weeks. I am a bit of a sucker for history and could not resist purchasing this book. It is so interesting to get a detailed description of how the medieval life could have looked like: how people lived, what the society was like and how everything looked like. Please give me a time travel machine!
What interests and activities have you occupied yourself with during Covid-19? Enjoy the rest of your Wednesday!