Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Highlights from 2013

 Joonas had surgery in January
 We went to Hawaii in March
 The boys attended (and loved) their first overnight camp
 The inlaws visited

Emmi learned to walk. On Pentti's birthday.
 I finally learned to make "pulla" or Finnish cinnamon buns.
 I went to Montreal alone to celebrate my 40th with Mehj

2013 was a great year. There is so much that I could write about: Matias' hockey games, and Joonas' enthusiasm for the piano, visits to Hope, ladies nights with the women from the church, catching up with old friends, the list goes on. And even though there was some cause for worry as well, with Joonas' surgery and Pentti losing his job and my grandma being in and out of the hospital, I feel profoundly grateful for the year that is ending today.
PS. The (terrible) picture of me was the only picture taken the whole time I was in Montreal. I guess I was too busy to take pictures. Anyway, Mehj and I were at a great French bistro type restaurant called Le Grenouille.

2013 reads

I did a fair bit of reading in 2013. With putting the kids to bed, nap time, getting a book light and becoming more comfortable with e-books, I ended up having lots of opportunities to read. Unusual for me is that I read six non-fiction books. They are marked with an asterisk and I really enjoyed them. All. Of the fiction that I read, a lot of it was fluff, but there were also some really great reads.

A list of books read in 2013:
The Perfect Hope
A Moveable Feast
The Dressmaker
Unfinished Business
Everybody Has Everything
A Week In Winter
The Avalon Ladies Scrapbooking Society
The Secret Keeper
The Shoemaker's Wife
*Bringing Up Bebe
Whiskey Beach
Tapestry of Fortunes
The Year of Pleasures
*Love Does
Open House
The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window and Disappeared
How To Eat A Cupcake
All The Summer Girls
Mango Season
*Be A People Person
*Crazy Love
Where'd You Go Bernadette
*One Way Love
People of the Book
How I Came to Sparkle Again
*Grace For The Good Girl

Saturday, December 28, 2013


We had some crazy snow right before Christmas. It snowed on the last day before Christmas break, so the kids school ended up closing a day early. The timing of it was perfect and the kids were in heaven! Of course it melted before Christmas so it didn't actually mess up our holiday plans.

Thursday, November 28, 2013


I've been looking for a small cabinet with doors. The kids love to spread out, and do their homework on the dining room table. That means pencils and felts and books and binders, in addition to the usual toys and paper airplanes. So, I needed a cabinet where I could quickly stash things out of sight and here it is...
(I don't why the mirrored doors look flawed in the picture)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Christmas decor

Christmas came full-fledged to our house on the weekend. I love it!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Growing too fast

Joonas turned 6 today and Emmi turned 15 months. Time sure flies!! My favourite saying for this time of my life is that the days are long but the years are short. Some days seem to last forever: the boys fight, Emmi won't nap, the house is a mess, there's nothing for dinner...But looking back, the time has gone incredibly fast. It makes me sad that I no longer have a baby. And that Joonas is such a big boy, let alone Matias. That's why I am trying my hardest to slow down and make time for them. Tonight, Joonas asked me to lay beside him when he was going to sleep. I didn't really want to, but I did. There will be a day when no one wants me to sleep next to them. I dread that day.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Today's inspiration: lights and candles

When it gets dark and dreary, I love to pull out extra candles and lights around the house. I filled this vase with lights years ago and it usually comes out in October when it starts to get dark earlier, the rains set in and my fireplace starts getting a lot of use.

Sunday, October 6, 2013


I know I've written about it before, but we are very lucky to live in a townhouse complex where there are lots of (nice) kids. It is so rare nowadays for kids to be outside for hours in their yard playing with children from the neighbourhood. (I have lots of friends with kids who have to schedule playdates in order for their kids to have someone to play with). All I have to do is look out the window, or send my kids out into the yard and more often than not-instant playdate!! It really is something to be thankful for.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

My inlaws visited for three weeks at the end of the summer. 

Sunday, July 28, 2013


So, today was Emmi's party, even though she doesn't actually turn one until tomorrow. Everything went really well and the weather was fantastic. I'm really happy that all my kids birthdays are during different seasons, so I can do different things with the house and decor. I am especially happy that there is a summer birthday in the mix because then I can take full advantage of my deck. Today's party was at noon and had the perfect lazy sunny Sunday afternoon vibe. The fact that we could lounge outside on the deck made it that much better.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Almost a year!!

We're having a princess themed first birthday in a couple weeks. I can't believe she is turning one already!!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Ball Hockey Part II

Matias' team did really well. They finished first (with the most points in the regular season) in their league. On Saturday, June 22nd, they had the game for the semi finals and Sunday (since they won on Saturday) they played in the finals. They lost in the final, by one goal. But, it was a great game. The whole team played really well and it was a nail biter right to the last seconds. The boys were disappointed to lose, and there was some crying (the youngest players being 5 or 6 yrs old). But, we had a celebration afterwards with food and drinks and the kids seemed to get over the loss pretty quick.
After the final game, we headed to Burnaby Lake to celebrate the end of the season. There was food and cake and goody bags. The coaches had pooled together their own money to have trophies made for the players. The kids were so excited!! After all the eating and celebrating, the kids played against the adults. By the end of the two hours, no one even remembered that we had lost. It was a great morning and I am really grateful that Matias lucked out with such an awesome team and above all, such awesome coaches. Next year, who knows? The coaches this year emphasized having fun. They tried to play all the players- even the weaker ones got floor time. During the play offs the better players got more floor time, but the coaches were still pretty fair and above all, supportive and easy going. They seemed to really coach, in the truest sense of the word; every player had dramatically improved by  the end of the season. Observing some of the other coaches out there left something to be desired...
During Saturday's semi final game the coaches of the other team were clearly out to win. At any cost. Considering this was the peanut division (under 8 year olds), I couldn't believe the lengths that they went to to try to win. They (illegally) changed the jersey numbers of their players so that our coaches couldn't match up our best players with theirs. When our guy got called for tripping, their player fell down. When he tried to get up, his coach shoved him back down (hoping for a major penalty I guess). Earlier in the season, the same coaches had tried to get a weak player to sneak in and take the penalty for a stronger player. In Sunday's final, the coach had (illegally) cut the weakest players from his team and not even told them that there were play offs. When one of the parents showed up and wanted her son to play, the coach said no. Unbelievable.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Ball Hockey

Matias has been playing floor hockey since April. He is really enjoying it and we are happy that we signed him up. He's getting exercise and learning how to play on a team, which are both invaluable. Most of the time he plays defense, which makes it hard for him to ever score any goals. I was hoping that he would get at least one goal this season, just to make him feel good. Well, when I saw his face on Saturday after the game, I was pretty sure that that had happened. I was right. Yay, Matias!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

After the kids go to bed

We bought a canopy for the patio. I love it! I was worried it might be too dark and darken the living room inside, but we put it in one corner and it doesn't affect the light in the living room at all. Also, no more carrying in the pillows in case it rains:) The picture was taken in the evening, after the kids had fallen asleep...

PS. I'm trying to get better about updating my blog. I figure even if no one reads it, its a good place to keep a sort of diary of events/thoughts/feelings etc.

Friday, June 7, 2013


We recently had family photos done at Jericho beach. We have used the same photographer three times now. I really appreciate her artistic eye. Anyone can snap a pic, but not everyone has the eye to capture moments. I just love this shot, which originally included me, but I think its better with me cropped out. My four favourite people in the whole world!!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Out around the neighbourhoood

We live in East Vancouver, but you'd never know it considering all the greenery and trails through the forests around here. Lately, I have been going for a lot of early morning walks with Emmi. Spring is the best because everything is so lush and green, the sun is shining, but it's not too hot. Here are some pics from along our regular route:


Today's inspiration is this log that Matias found in the forest behind our house. I just love it.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


I have read a lot of parenting books and articles. Right now, this book is the one that I am reading and loving!! I think kids should enjoy their childhood and be free to explore and develop on their own. Boredom and frustration can be good for them. I am not pushing my kids to be super achievers or to read by the age of 3. Of course I want my kids to be successful, but most of all I want them to be secure, independent and happy.

Monday, May 20, 2013


It's been awhile. Again. Life sure is busy and I rarely get to my desk top anymore. Anyway, we went to Honolulu in March. It was the first time for Emmi and the third time for the boys. We had a fantastic time. The weather was great and the kids did well on the flights.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


For Lent I am giving up shopping. This should be interesting for someone who feels an inexplicable draw to the mall. I find the western materialism out of control and disturbing and yet I'm right there with the next person running to the sale or to buy the latest "in" color. I don't need anything and neither do my kids. So, until Easter, I am going to put a stop to the unnecessary spending. I don't need black shoes, or any other colour for that matter. I have enough scarves to last a lifetime. Even Emmi who is only 6 months old has more clothes than she can ever possibly wear. So, no more shopping. 

PS. On a side note, this is the year that I am going to start early enough with the Easter grass:)

Friday, February 8, 2013


I made a photobook of Emmi's first six months. Hopefully the link works and you can see it here:


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Wish Jar


I finally did it; I made a wish jar. I have been talking about making one for years. Almost every time there is a birthday or anniversary or some other special occasion, Pentti says that he is stuck and has no idea what to get me. (This despite the fact that I have suggested/dropped hints left and right. But I digress...) Anyway, what often ends up happening is that he buys me nothing and I get upset. Or, he buys something I don't like and then he gets upset because I am so picky. So, the wish jar is going to magically erase all of that tension. Pentti can go to the jar and choose to buy any of things I have suggested in there.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Emmi turns 6 months

The boys have been so sweet to Emmi, even though they were both disappointed that she was a girl...

Monday, January 21, 2013

Today's Inspiration

Today's inspiration is the wall clock I found on the weekend. Sorry they're not very good pictures, but the clock has large white numbers on it. I love it.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Small Joys

My sister-in-law recently blogged about ten small things that bring her happiness. She challenged me to do the same. So, here are 10 things in my everyday life that bring me joy:

 Foamy lattes
 The canvas print of Matias hanging in the living room
 the sauna
 bird print
 my favourite chair
 bamboo and sunshine
 Marimekko prints
baby girl hats

walks with baby girl

I have to say that this list would be somewhat different during different times of the year. In the summer, I'd have to include my patio which I love, in the fall I'd have to include the colours of the leaves...Maybe I'll make another list later in the year.