fredag 31 december 2010

So this is the New Year?

Happy New Year everyone, great and small! Do you feel any different at all?

Ah, "Death cab for cutie" says it all in their song "New Year".

We here at home will be spending this last day of the year, as well as the first of the new, by sitting in the sofa/lying on the bed and resting. Micke's fever is an on/off thing, and he's coughing and nose dripping so much he's having trouble sleeping. Me, I'm mostly just tired. Major tired.

Anyway, enjoy the fireworks you see tonight. We here will be gazing through the window and see half of what Turku city is shooting up into the sky. The other half will not show, since the home for the elderly across the street will block that out.

onsdag 29 december 2010

Will "New Year's Day" become "Sick Day" instead?

Oh dear, Micke apparently caught the flu someone was spreading around like crazy on the train back from Ostrobothnia. (read: someone was coughing ALL the time on the train in our compartment) Now he's got a such a sore throat I've told him not to speak. It's painful to hear him say even so little as "it hurts". Awful. And on top of that, he's got a fever. He became symptomatic yesterday noon.

And this morning, I started to feel awful too.
I got up at 08:30, had to cancel my only morning-appointment, wrote an email to people saying "we might have to skip the New Year get-together at our place" and went back to bed. And slept until 15:00.

While I slept, I dreamt a somewhat crazy dream about:

  • My Mom celebrating her 70th birthday. In Sweden, at one of my aunt's places.
  • Me coloring my hair, because Mom said I had too.
  • I did it while being very pregnant, which meant it was a chore.
  • While doing this, Micke came along and also wanted his hair (read: beard) colored, and I somehow managed to do this and color his lips brown. Not pretty.
I guess my conscience it trying to tell me I need to start planning for my Mom's 70th birthday in May next year, and get an appointment at my hairdresser's in January. Don't know much about the other stuff.

tisdag 28 december 2010

Aprés Christmas comes lots of things...

... of which one is New Year. But that's a later blog post.

Our Christmas was okay. Much more a 'real holiday' that last time we were in Ostrobothnia for Christmas. This time, instead of driving around in the car visiting various people, we got to spend quite a lot of time at Micke's mother's apartment. I actually managed to forget being stressed out over things. Some of the time. Most of the time.

We visited relatives, and Micke's friend Joonas' family. I borrowed the car and drove to Kronoby to visit Sally and her family. Joonas cooked spicy meatballs when we visited, and even though he had totally forgot about my allergies it was okay. We played some games on their christmas present "Kinect" for Xbox. That was amusing, and what made it really funny was that the fact that the guys sweated like pigs when playing. It's a VERY athletic game console. It makes you exercise. A lot. While the guys were browsing through the Kinect-games on Xbox live, I talked with Joonas' mom and sister. They're very much into crafting (Sofia is mostly into scrap-booking, and her mom wants to start doing jewelry), and I got to browse through some of the crafting magazines they had. That was both fun and informative.

I also joined Sally's family for dinner, her mom had made these huge meat-pies that were really good. We talked, and the whole time while I was there Sally's cats totally boycotted me. They thought I had come to take them away. Again. That's the thank you get from helping your friend get her 2 cats to the train. They consider you to be the plague, and to be avoided at all costs.

We (that is, me and Micke) only ate out once, and it was REALLY nice of the people working in the kitchen at "O'Leary's" (it's a restaurant/bar with sports & baseball theme...) to make me paprika/chili-free dinner when I asked. My stomach was so pleased about that. It wants us to visit again.
*sigh* My stomach wants me to eat bland chicken pasta with lots of olive oil. Seriously, my stomach ain't the sharpest tool in the shed... Not that my brain is either, but at least it has the sense to frown at the stomach...

Oh, and it snowed. Like, it snowed a lot! During that week we must have had almost a meter of snow. And it was cold too: at most we had -27 degrees Celsius (-16.6 degrees Fahrenheit if you like that better). People complained about the cold. A lot. And on how the trains and people driving cars had problems because of it.
While driving, it snowed so much, it was either a complete whiteout because of the snow, or because your glasses got so much condensation on them (because of your own breathing).
Me, I just thought it was okay. I got to use my knitted buff on top of my regular scarf. And used a double  pair of knitted gloves. As well as boots that went up to under my knees.

Anyway, Christmas came and went, and what I got for Christmas can be placed into two categories: chocolate and other stuff.
I got a really elegant and simple pendant from Mimi, we got wine from Sally, and I got two earrings from Micke (of which I had chosen the color myself...). Of all the chocolate, I think by now Micke has eaten about ... half of it already.


He started on the train back home. He got a stomach ache.

*double sigh*

And he made me eat some as well. I got a stomach ache too. And I can safely say, that I've seen enough pralines now to last me until New Year.

To end this post, I'll share with you some pictures of snow and trains.

Snow over Aspegren's garden, Jakobstad.

Bennäs train station.

2 minutes early?!
Is this a late Christmas present, or only our train back to Turku? 

When this is all you have to stare at for 5 hours,
you're bound to get pretty bored.
No wonder we thought the chocolate was a good idea...

When in doubt/bored, use your phone to check forums/blog posts.

Every seat filled, all the space above crammed with luggage.
The people who hadn't bought tickets beforehand,
they had to stand. You try standing for 5 hours, and see
how your Christmas spirit survives that.
Back in Turku, where all the snow drifts were as tall as Micke!

fredag 17 december 2010

Baking bread...

... even though I shouldn't. Because people on the paleo-diet don't eat bread, because wheat flour hadn't been "invented" back in  10 000 BC....

But, non the less, I will try to entice you with my magnificent (hah!) bread baking pictures.

The foccacia!
...insert appropriate music here...

Dough on tray.

Wait for it...

Fermentation done, thank you Saccharomyces cerevisiae!

Olives! Pirkka eco-olives :) 

Plop plop plop!

eco-Olive oil!

Sea salt and dried rosemary!

200 degrees Celsius for 40-45 min!

Saved from the fiery flames of the oven!


Baking chocolate truffles

Last year, as well as the year before that, I baked truffle chocolate for Christmas. Mostly, because it was chocolate and candy and heck-it's-Christmas-can't-we-have-at-least-something-that's-not-healthy-to-eat. Both times, the whole kitchen was a MESS afterwards, and the whole 'event' took maybe 4 hours.

Needless to say, I soooo did not wan't to see the kitchen looking like this again.

And it's AMAZING how much just a simple pastry bag will help when doing this, instead of following the recipe and using two spoons (or hand and spoon like last year). Why (oh WHY?!) didn't Pirkka put that in their truffle recipe???

Yup, I'm also a Pirkka card user and a Pirkka-magazine reader. (For those of you who aren't, Pirkka is the 'loyal' customer club of one of Finland's biggest food market boutiques. Pirkka belongs to Kesko. The others are S-bonus that belongs to the S-group, and Ykkösbonus which belongs to Suomen Lähikauppa Oy). But, seriously, sometimes they DO have nice recipes in their monthly cooking-magazine.

The recipe is quite simple, and contains things like cocos fat, cocoa, chocolate, powdered sugar, egg, cream and orange peel. Here's the recipe I use on Pirkka, but while I searched around I found another one too. The other one is... a slightly less calorie BOMB.

Triple amount of truffle creme, triple the amount of nom noms to eat.

And I know that they - unfortunately! - look like small poops with nuts in.
Believe me when I say that was SO not the intention... 

The other variation looked a little like Brunberg's truffle.
But it was easier to make the "poop-like" ones.
We've already given some of these away as Christmas presents - who doesn't like chocolate? - and the rest will be MINE ALL MINE MUHAHAHAHA!
... I mean, mine and Micke's to eat while we spend Christmas with his family up in Ostrobothnia this year.


I've read, that no one is happy when they check how much their weight is.
People who are over-weight want to get a little lighter, and people who're under-weight want to get a little heavier.

Me, I just want (and need!) new clothes, because by this rate my whole wardrobe will look like I permanently borrow my elder mommy-type sister's clothes. And I don't even have a sister. My jeans look like hillbilly-jeans, my shirts sag, my skirts hang waaaay down my hips, and the only things that are kinda okay are the T-skirts. Except, most of them are so old / used / ratty, not to mention "H & M quality", that I'll be needing new ones fast.

Anyway, let's look at some pictures :)

This is our IKEA-scale.
To make using it more enjoyable,
I've written "I like YOU anyway" on it.
We have a pep-talk scale.
Micke's mom copied the idea.
Now she has a pep-talk scale too.
These are my feet.
There's many like them, but these are mine.
All pruned up and warm from the shower.
Sometimes I use nail polish, but not today.
The scale says "55 kilograms".
It used to say "60".
A quick calculation of my BMI gives 55/(1,65x1,65) = 20,20.
According to the index graph, I'm normal weight.

These are Micke's feet.
There's many like them, but these are his.
All covered with proper black socks,
facing my pruned toes, looking nice.
He never uses nail polish.
The scale says "73 kilograms".
Once, a long time ago (he told me), it used to say
"91 kilograms".

Christmas wish list of 2010

Dear Santa,

Even though my dear mother was forced to "kill you" when I was still very young (I was 8 years old, and had Santa-trauma/depression every December), I still hope that it's okay to write to you. You see, I think Christmas has become a bit like list-mania, and I need to get on the wagon. Like I did last year.

Last Christmas, I wished for 6 things. Of them, I got one: the new frying pan I wanted and we so desperately needed. I also got this amazing filé knife, which I so love my Mikael for.

The rest, I've bought during the year, so you're forgiven. And the chocolate I made myself, so that's okay too.

But, this year I'll be monitoring your behavior again, so here is my list for 2010:

  1. I want my Micke to stop being a nicotine addict, and be free of it once and for all.
    • This is not a selfish wish, because I want him to stop being so frustrated all the time. He's so stressed out, mostly because of his work, so please please please take at least this off his back.
  2. I would very much want to get a job for 2011. One that would preferably pay enough, so that Micke won't have to stress even more about work, and instead concentrate on his pro gradu thesis.
    • And no cheating and giving me one where I have to sit by a cash register all day. Seriously, I'm made for laboratory work. Sitting and parroting "that'll be 5,40 euros, please" is not work, it's a nightmare.
  3. A plane ticket to Paris and back. I want to have a kiss on top of the Eiffel tower, and see as much as I can in one day in the Louvre.
    • if this is impossible, then I promise not to hate you. 
    • not very much anyway
    • okay, I'll still hate you, but I understand that everyone should try and minimize their carbon-dioxide foot print.
    • not like that's a valid reason to skimp on me, just so you know
  4.  A new pair of jeans. I'm too small for the ones I have, so I look like a dork in all 5 of them. My hips and thighs aren't as wide as they used to be, so I look like a hillbilly in her mama's Sunday jeans.
    • waist <28'', I could begin with 26'' and go from there
    • length 32''
  5. I want mom and dad to stay (relatively) healthy. 
    • I know you'll have a hard time on this one, especially since both have a troublesome diet, and are already in the risk groups of adult diabetes and coronary disease. Especially dad.
    • but promise me you'll at least try
    • please?
  6. Chocolate and bottle of champagne.
    • I'll help you: I already made truffles. You only have to bring me a small bottle of champagne.
    • And I can save that one for New Year's Eve.

Christmas is a bit about making lists...

... or then making a LOT of them.

To do lists.
Shopping lists.
Wish lists.
Christmas-cards-to-be-sent lists.

It's a bit like list-mania.

I at least have been using the shopping/to do list application on our Ipod like crazy.  It's nice not to have to have a thousands post-its in you calendar. Easier to edit on-the-go too.

Anyway, I thought I should maybe also write a wish list. Even though I know that no one will adhere to it.

måndag 13 december 2010

Christmas decos

The -huge- Strömsö-dream catcher.
During one summer while visiting Micke's family up in Ostrobothnia, I managed to scavenge a part of a spruce tree root on the Fäboda beach. The (original) plan was for it to become the skeleton of a dream catcher.
Like the huge one they did in the Strömsö TV-program, which looked like this (picture on the right).
However, I didn't get any inspiration to create it that summer, and so the whole project kinda went on hiatus... until now.

We don't have many Christmas decos, mainly because when we moved in together Micke didn't have any, and the ones I had were hand-me-downs from my Mom and Dad. Only thing we've actually bought ourselves, which was last year, was an electrical advent candelabra (swe. adventsljusstake). One that was on sale after New Year came and went. Yeah, we're cheapos. But hey, we're students, so I guess it's okay.

Anyhow, one thing I really would have liked us to have last Christmas, was a wreath for the door. It looks so much more inviting and cozy if you have one hanging on it. We already have one for the rest of the year - one I bought this summer in Jakobstad during 'Jakobs dagar'. But it's not that 'Christmassy'....

This was actually a real simple craft-thing, and in the end required very few materials. So, out with the:
  • spruce root
  • yarn (gray, red, white)
  • jute twine
  • 2 wooden craft balls, some sewing thread and one old nylon sock
Welcome home!
Yes, even thought we don't want any 'rubbish' mail, the IKEA
and the Stockmann catalog is still considered ESSENTIAL mail :P
The dolls had their 'clothes' crocheted, and the bow and "snow" is also crocheted. The eyes and lips of the dolls were made by covering the wooden craft balls with pieces of the nylon sock and then stitching the rest.

måndag 29 november 2010

In preparation for...

... the Independence day ball at December 6th, I've bought a pair of real dancing shoes. That is, shoes made for just dancing. They're supposed to support and not chafe your feet. But... they're practical, not decorative.

What to do, what to do?

Well, run in to Tiimari (Finnish arts & crafts store) and Blingi (local dress jewelry store here in Turku). For 5 euros, I got enough things to make the shoes a little bit prettier.

Tiimari + Blingi + shoe box with booring shoes becomes...

... some slightly prettier shoes. Tadaa!
While I was at Blingi - I had Mimi with me, because I badly needed her advice on buying the dancing shoes -  I found they had these cute decorative shapes cut from wood. I bought a pair of black "butterfly"-inspired ones, along with some ear-ring-pieces. They turned out quite alright :) I might actually go back and see if I can get some in violet as well, because they hardly weigh a thing and still look quite elegant. At least, I think so.

"Butterfly" ear rings.

Out in the cold I went...

... last Friday, and came back with tomatoes, books and yarn. Not to mention borrowing 2 x 10 liter stainless steel cooking pots, and lugging them home. Had a nice chat with friends at Biocity too, and got some glögg and baked goodies for "special price" (read: all the odd cash I happened to have in my wallet... 35 cents). This snowy quest took me from Biocity, to the open air market, to the library, and to Lankabaari.

Lankabaari is one of my favorite LYS here in Turku. (For all of you non-knitters/crafters, LYS stands for local yarn shop...) But I still can't wait for Menita in Espoo/Helsinki to finally launch their web shop.

So, it was a busy weekend.

I think I spent most of my free time on Saturday in the kitchen, doing all sorts of things. While things were simmering on the stove, I opened one of the books I had borrowed from the library, and it started out just as silly as I had expected it to be. Even so, I read it until Micke went out with the boys to the pub, and then I put it aside. I don't know if I'll even finish it. Time will tell, I suppose.
The rest of the evening, after cleaning up in the kitchen, I crocheted and listened to music on YouTube.  There's this a capella group at the University of Oregon, called On the Rocks, and there's a bunch of videos of them singing different songs. They're really good, too.

On Sunday, me and Micke and Mimi went to the Wäinö Aaltonen Museum (WAM, or Wäiski). It was my first visit to WAM, and the exhibition we were going to see - mainly because Mimi's friend Anna would guide us around in Swedish - is called "Death and it's many faces". The exhibition was definitely better than what I had thought it would be: much more a comment on how death is depicted in various art-cultures, and how you can relate to the concept of death via art. Not as gruesome as you would think at first. And not overtly filled with religious art either, mainly because that would have been too one-sided.
I'm sorry, because although you could take as many pictures as you wanted of any piece in the exhibit, I didn't have time to take a single one. Mainly because we had such an interesting time wandering around with our guide, and then it seemed impolite to stop and take pictures. Otherwise, I would gladly have shared some pictures with you.

onsdag 24 november 2010

It's new, it's fluffy, it's white, it's soft...

... but when you bring it inside, it quickly turns your clothes damp and makes your just dried and straightened hair revert back to it's original curly form. You guessed it, I'm talking about snow.

Today, it's been snowing like crazy. Quite nice for a Wednesday. The Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) actually issued a warning about snow squalls yesterday, for both people inland and out at sea. Still, the temperature ain't that low yet (only -7 degrees Celsius), and the wind here in Turku ain't that strong yet either, but I guess it's getting there.

Yesterday, some (idiots!) were still brave enough to head outside without headwear, but today everyone has headwear and scarves on. And I'm glad that I have glasses, beacuse they allow me to walk with my eyes open outside. Getting snow in your eyes stings. Really, it does.

You actually have to admire the suckers that go out WITHOUT mittens/hats/coats to stand 10 min in the wind and smoke their stupid cigarettes. I'm so glad I'm not one of them! *glee*

[video of snow]

Well, other than walking to the library today - I usually sit in the quiet reading room and writes on my computer - I'm gonna have to head out to today's Ravelry-meeting with the Turku-group. I actually (!) fretted yesterday about what I was going to bring with me to knit/crochet today, as I nearly only have WIPs ("work-in-progress" for you un-initiated crafters) that are so bulky and large that it wouldn't be practical to bring them. In desperation, this morning, I finally chose a shawl that's been hibernating in my "To do" basket since July. If I get it done before the 6th of December, I can use it while at the Indepence day-ball.

I've actually been fretting a little about that ball too, because I still don't know what to do with my violet/lilac ball gown. It's so... boring. I was thinking about sewing on some satin-roses, but I'm not sure what colors to use. I've been browsing the finnish arts&crafts webstores though, so I'm not completely clueless as to what's available. I just can't make up my mind.

And this is me -so- not mentioning getting  dancing-shoes for the event either.

Basically, I'm a bit frustrated about it... but nevermind. It's just a ball. Been to at least 10 of those before. Just never with so many that I know - since some people from both Soda Club and Otakt are going.

måndag 22 november 2010

Weekend of "Soda club dance camp 2010"

So, this past weekend was a busy one. As well as a one filled with activities. And slightly aching muscles, with a side dish of sweaty feet.

Tippsund is 65 km from Turku; about one hour by bus.
The buss for the camp area in Tippsund, Taivassalo left on Friday at 16 pm., and we got back to Turku on Sunday at 15 pm. The camp is owned by the city of Turku, and they rent it out to groups/associations/schools who need a place for extracurricular activities. There's one big house, surrounded by 8 small cabins (with room for 6 persons each) and the sauna. The area itself is nice, sea and all, but we spent 90% of our time indoors in the big house, and I just about managed to snap some quick pictures of it all before the buss left (on Sunday).

The theme for the whole camp was to learn foxtrot, cha-cha and bugg. Of those, I already knew a little foxtrot, but I must say I do feel more confident dancing it now. Cha-cha was fun (as well as easy to learn if you already know rumba), and bugg was the most fun. I managed to snap a few videos (only 4) with people dancing both. I'm going to watch them when I feel the need to repeat the moves we learned. Timing in cha-cha I think was the hardest to learn, and *that* I still need lots of practice in.

The whole camp was fun, even if it just felt like we danced, ate and slept. I used 8 different T-shirts in 3 days. Or taken so many shower's in just 3 days. Or had my toes stepped on, for that matter (thank you,  you soft shoes). Or been peckish so much.

Or spoken finnish for 3 days straight. THAT was good practice, since one of the main reason behind me starting to dance in Soda Club was the chance to practice my finnish alongside the dancing. I think it went quite well, even though I've probably spoken more bad grammar this weekend than you really should.

tisdag 16 november 2010


... I'm gonna help Mimi put up the rest of her paintings. We'll have to drill a few more holes in the walls for that, though.

My dear friend Mimi is currently living with two other girls in this huge apartment, and since they're going to celebrate her moving in this weekend, she's been a bit frantic about getting her room in order. I've helped her fix the curtain rods, and because she's been all "woe and whine" about her poor paintings never getting put up on the walls, I thought it high time we got around to do just that.

I mean, if you're an Art-history major, and you can't get your own paintings up on the walls...?
Luckily, it's pretty easy if you have a steady hand and a drill that can drill through concrete.

- later addition - 

The new curtain rods, aka the new room separators.
Above the door are 3 of the paintings that needed to be put up.
We put up these IKEA curtain rods last Saturday. Mimi's room has no "real" door, just two French-type glass doors (not shown in picture). When you close them, the glass still allows everyone to see inside. So, to fix this, the curtains on the rods. When the door is closed, you can draw the curtains together, creating much needed privacy.

Finally, they're up on the walls!
(Do you see the bent hammer?)
We tried (as much as one Art major and one Biochemistry major can) to place the paintings in such a way that they
  1. wouldn't clash with one another
  2. have enough space around them, so they don't look clustered
  3. look coherent
  4. and still would look nice together
Mimi said, and I quote her:

I'm the one studying art, but Ea was the one who suggested most of the layout.

Go figure. All I did was knit/crochet along to the interior decorating shows on the LIV-channel (like Colin & Justin's Home Heist).

We got the mirror up on the wall as well,
although it was only a horrid 5 min of work.
I thought we would never fit the small holes onto the screws!
Do you see the newspaper clips besides the mirror? That's how I learned (thank you Liv-tv!) how to put up paintings on the walls: cut a piece of newspaper/cardboard the same size as the painting, then put that one up on the wall. It's much easier to move that around, while you try to decide where on the wall the painting should go. Mimi still has to frame the 3 pictures that will go by the mirror, that's why they're not up yet.

Not to bad, considering we were both pretty newbies about all of this when we started. I still think we managed to make it look quite okay, non the less.

I was knitting & crocheting here....


 And I got both WIPs done :)

onsdag 10 november 2010

Princess dress seeking new owner

I have this "princess type dress", which I bought in February of 2004. I've used it on 6 occations, and taken it to the dry cleaners twice (second time because SOMEONE spilled vanilla ice cream down the front of it). Once upon a time, when it was new, I payed 280 euros for it.

But, sadly, it doesn't fit me like it used to, once upon a time.

Why? Well, I'm too tiny for it now. I requires a girl (or transgender person!?) that's a size 36-38 and about 170-175 cm tall (even when you're not wearing high heels). Me... I'm still 168 cm, and if I take a too wide step backwards I sometimes trip on the hem. And, I'm not a size 36 anymore. I'm a 34-36.

So, if anyone of you knows someone who would like to borrow a slightly bigger dress for, say, the Independence day ball this year, let me know. I'll gladly dress swap, because otherwise I'll be going in this:

Which is a dress me and my mom bought for me to use at at an event when I was still 16... And, as you can see, the dress is not so... fancy? Nice? Decorated?

Winter came! And it's only the start of November!

It's been snowing! And much, if you ask my opinion. Sadly, nearly all of it will melt during the day and freeze during the night, so all the pavements will be horribly slippery. But, even if it's not snowing anymore today, I'll still show you some pictures of how it was yesterday.

Turku market square

Outside the city library

söndag 7 november 2010

Thanksgiving-ish kinda dinner

Extra time = more time available for making nom nom food in your kitchen

I thought it would be possible, but... Sadly, but I didn't manage to find a whole turkey, so that we could have a "real" Thanksgiving dinner today. We had to make do with two chickens instead.

What's this about, you ask? Finns don't celebrate Thanksgiving!
Well... no, we don't - but I've always wanted to try to bake a whole turkey in the oven. For when I will need to know how to do it in the future, when I'll say "blah" to traditional finnish Christmas-ham, and bake turkey instead.
And we celebrated All Saints Day instead.We lit a total of six candles.

Before you scroll down to the photos, I must lamnent the fact that none of my food pictures ever look like those in the cookbooks. Thanks to Emmis, and her comment that

Cookbook food is still raw and has stuff in it to make it look bigger.
You would NEVER want to eat cookbook food!

I'm confident that even though the pictures in the books were nicer, at least everyone around the table wanted seconds :) Pictures can't compete with that. Oh, I must stop, before my ego runs over my common sense.

Alas! They met their final end on my kitchen counter! Poor things.

Making the stuffing/filling.

Chicken liver, bacon, apple, raisins and milk+breadcrumbs.
And of course some seasoning.

With surgical-ish precision (hah!), I sew together the chickens after I'd stuffed them.
Thank goodness that I had a surgical needle, it would have been so hard otherwise.

Dessert! "Cour à la créme". Or at least, the receipt was for that,
but I didn't have any cheese forms to make them into hearts.
I had to settle for this way instead. But it was really good!

After-dinner gaming. We played two rounds of "Gammelgäddan",
a really lovely and childish game. It's about fishing and
catching a "grand olde pike" before anyone else.
This time, the game was the most INTENSE one I've ever played:
everyone was snatching fish from everyone, and eveyone chased everyone!
Eventually, Martina (Micke's sister) won BOTH rounds. Unbelivable.

fredag 5 november 2010

Baking breadsticks

I'm so glad I decided on giving up all those games! It really proved beneficial, as it enabled me to bake without stressing out. Now, I know this ain't paleo, so don't lynch me.

The receipt is from Tina Nordström's lovely book, in the chapter about tapas and snacks. Anyway, I needed something to take with me to this dancing event, and since I needed something that was both cheap, yummy and relatively fast to bake, this was perfect.
Only thing you need is:
  • puff pastry (swe. smördeg)
  • coumin (caraway) or rosemary
  • seasalt
  • one whisked egg
One thing I decided to do however, is make them okay for vegans to eat too. To do that, I bought "butter dough" made out of plant oils. No lactose, no eggs, no milk. And instead of whisked egg, I coated them with rapeseed-oil. And they still tasted quite okay, even if they didn't look so yellow and nice as they could have.

Ready to be put in the oven

All done!

torsdag 4 november 2010

Goodbye Farmville and Frontierville!

As of 11:30 a.m. this lovely Thursday, I no longer have the applications Farmville or Frontierville on my Facebook profile. I gave away all the tiny pixel things, or at least all the one that were gift-able, to friend still playing both/either game.

I sent a last "gift" from both a applications to said friends, telling them sort of that "This is the last gift, enjoy it while it lasts". In Farmville, this was a "mystery gift", in Frontierville a "ribbon".
mystery gift
Now, I think I will reminiscence about these two application games a bit...

Farmville, FV, or the game where
"I'm gonna come to bed just as soon
as I've harvested my crops"

My avatar, or at least 'her' last incarnation.
Personally, I would never be caught wearing
these type of coveralls.
I started playing Farmville ... close to 2 years ago, I think? I remember being semi-bullied into it by Sally and Daniel at a party at their place, but I didn't install the app until about 2 weeks after that.I thought it was pretty lame in the beginning, but I kept playing sporadically. Then, I became level 20, and it started to be a "bit better". Farmville is one of those games where you either have to have a certain number of "neighbors" OR have attained a certain level before you are allowed to buy certain stuffs. Most annoyingly, you had to be at least level 20 to buy "farm equipments" like a seeder/harvester/tractor. And later, at level 30 (and maaaany updates later) a combine harvester.

Zynga taught you in Farmville that "clicking" to do things (harvest, plant or whatever) is GOOD. It creates the feeling that "you're doing something!" hence, that you're advancing in the game.

Zynga then taught you that you can be "rewarded" by clicking enough (aka getting enough 'experience' to 'level up'), to get the ability to "click less". Hence, the more you click, the less you will have to click in the future. For those of you who haven't tired this game, this will sound stupid and not make much sense. For those of you who actually do play/have played, you know exactly what I mean.

Since there's HUNDREDS of insider's joke-things you can write down about the game, I'll just leave you with some pictures and then make up a short list for you to laugh/wonder at.

Halloween 2010. Yup, my avatar is dressed up as a dino.
The last screen-shot of my farm, Halloween-style.
Do notice the barns on the right side, covered in spider webs.
Yes, I became level 42.

As you advance in level, you acquire lots and lots of pixel-animals and buildings.
My "farm collection" was about sheep. I collected sheep.
*shakes head*
White, black, Valentine's day, St Patrick's day, Easter, Spagetti,
Mining, Pumpkin and one Scared sheep. And three lambs.
As well as one Ghost sheep, popping out of the tombstone.

FV memory. This one is a classic!
And the fast that this is posted the day before my birthday says it all...
My Farmville reminiscence-list:
  • The chickens. When placing them side by side, the dip their heads just like devotees at a mosque. It's... hypnotic to look at for too long.
  • Barn raising. Se picture above.
  • Sending nails/bricks/planks/bottles/blankets/bees/shovels/whatever you need to get to finish a certain building.
  • "You have 39 application or games requests"
  • The chickens!
  • The pop ups!
  • Waiting for you farm to load.
  • Waiting for other peoples farms to load
  • "click click click" then "click click click click click click click click click". Why couldn't someone just have thought of "click and drag"?
  • That you have to press the "Like" button for Farmville, in order to get the 
  • The chickens!!! Finally, a bigger chicken coop, but it has room only for 60 of my 60+ chickens! I'm still drowning in chickens!
  • The pop ups!!! Make them stop!
  • Having 100 things in your giftbox that you can't use, but might need later. More loading time.
  • Arborists and Farmhands - finally I don't have to click on every single tree and animal!
  • ...*realizes this list could just go on and on...*

Frontierville, FrV, or the game where
"I gonna come to bed just as soon as
I get the energy required to..."

I started playing Frontierville right from the month it launched (June 2010). Immediately, I liked it more than Farmville - it had "quests", an avatar that could actually "do "things, and a more active simulation world.. E.g. if you felled a tree, you might get attacked by a bear. Your avatar actually had to "build" the buildings you wanted, etc. And the buildings weren't just decorations, they gave you more things to create, thus making the gaming more active.

Nice change from Farmville: Zynga took all the things they knew the players liked from FV, and created FrV. FV was passive, and you had to come up with things to do there by yourself. In FrV, the game presented you with goal options, and depending on how quick you finished one, you got able to do other things. Plus, you leveled up quite fast in the beginning. No more "boooooooooring" game in the beginning.

But, since Zynga is Zynga.... it was again a "click click click" kind of game. And pop ups all the time. You learned quite fast, that NOT using that "last" energy in you energybar saved you from at least 2 pop ups. But, you were sorry to learn that even when you had sent ALL of your neighbors some gifts, and visited ALL their farms, you still got pop ups saying "Friend X'x farm needs help!" or my favorite "Don't just sit there, how about sending some presents?" or "Invite your friends from Farmville over to play".


And, as with FV, I quickly turned off both sound and music.The game sounded like Super Mario Bros. if you didn't.

But overall, this was a very nice game - I actually liked it! But still, it had to go. Now, I'll leave you some pictures to look at:

The Halloween-themed banner

Halloween costumes on the avatars.

Avatars: Micke, Minnea and Linnea (from left to right).

My frontier farm. Sadly not in it's full glory,
since I took this picture as I was de-constructing it.
Do notice that:
I'm level 47.
I'm drowning in chickens - but this time by CHOICE! (thank you chicken coop!)
I have 17 000 logs of wood (thank you sawmill!)
And I had a blue hedgehog.

Saying goodbye, with a parade.

My Frontierville reminiscence-list:
  • Not having enough energy to do stuff, must wait...
  • Whole screen covered in money-things. Have to wait OR click on them for them to disappear...
  • Varmints: groundhogs, foxes, snakes and bears.
  • The pop ups. Like, all the time! All the time!!
    • "Get more energy"
    • "you need more of *whatever*"
    • "Beware that snake/bear/groundhog/fox, pardner..."
  • The use of "ye old frontier-English". It... got old fast. Again.
  • Planting crops, then having to move the plots, because "they're not in order! I can't make room for all the crops I need to plant, so that I can get enough pie/food to get more energy to do stuff!"
  • The Goals. Since this is not an epic fantasy game, they couldn't call then quests.
  • Not having enough energy to do stuff, must still wait!
  • Grow chickens, sell chickens :)
  • Not having enough energy to do stuff, must wait even more!!!
  • Loosing energy, money and time due to "loading errors".


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