24 February 2014

23-2-2014 // Necessary sightseeing

On sunday we had a "touristy" day. We were 100% tourists. First we drove up across the town to see the Hollywood sign. The navigator directed us trough some very sketchy neighborhoods and we for sure saw the extremity of living in LA, the very poor ones and then again the outrageously rich ones.

First I had an ambitious plan for us to go hike up the Runyuon Canyon but I looked into it a bit more in the morning and it turned out to be a 2 hour challenging hike and also the parking in there was said to be a pain in the ass. So on a Sunday morning after 10 o'clock, we did not even go and try that one out.  Instead we drove straight to Hollywood. For the sign, I also read about a few different places but came up with this one and it seemed to be the best way to see it. You just have to pass a couple of "no driving to the Hollywood sign" warnings(as those are said to be fake and put up by the residents rather than the city) and be sure to have a fairly new car to take you up the steep hill roads. Once we got to the place, there were a lot of other people too. Some were just enjoying the dog park in there, but most I would say were there for the sightseeing. The view from up there was gorgeous, you could see the Lake Hollywood, a barrage and all the beautiful(massive) houses. I also hiked bit higher from where we parked to see the sign a little better. 

There were people just running up and down the hills, you sure would be very fit to choose that as your morning run spot. 

I knew that the Griffith Observatory would be quite near this place so that was our next direction. Just after 15 min drive we got to see the beautiful overlook of LA. Unfortunately it was a bit foggy that day so we could not see all the way to the shore, but still it was so pretty(and apparently forgot to take my iPhone out, so no pics from this one..)

On the way back to Manhattan beach we got to witness the typical LA traffic, and I think this was not even anywhere near a bad traffic jam. Finally we made it trough and went for a little shopping spree to the famous supermarket, Whole Foods. It is marketed as the organic store providing local ingredients. I don't know about that, but still the selection of fruit, vegetables, nuts, beans and everything you can imagine was huge. They had all kinds of exotic looking food too. We ended up using $90, whoopsie.. 

In the afternoon we rented bikes from the hotel and went to stroll around Manhattan beach. We drove all the way down to Hermosa beach and the harbor in there. At the harbor, I heard this weird sound of almost like moaning, and then I saw a bunch of SEALS! That was so random, they were just hanging out on a little dock. It was so chill to just bike by the beach while people around you were running, playing volleyball and surfing. The beach houses were amazing in there, and pricy too as we saw on a window of the local realtor. 

We decided not to go out to eat and just have an early night in. I managed to keep my eyes open until 9pm, but after that I was out. Good thing about the time difference is that you fall asleep super early and easy and also wake up early and full of energy ready for the day. 

Now we are heading over to have some breakfast and after that its time to get the shopping started at Citadel Outlet.

22-2-2014 // First day in LA

LA is stealing my heart piece by piece. The last two days have been just amazing. Yesterday morning after a very early wake up due to the time difference, we went near the Manhattan Beach for breakfast in a place called Uncle Bill's Pancake House, and oh-my-gosh it was So good. By far the best pancakes I have ever had. And I have had quite a few. I got the plain american pancakes with strawberry and whip and mommy got blueberry buckwheat pancakes. Have to say, the blueberry one was the better one. It was so tasty and delicious. We might need to go there for another pair of pancakes some morning.

Ready for the day!
Just another beach house at Manhattan Beach
For years now, Yelp has been a huge help for me while traveling. Especially with restaurants and cafes its hard find any good places without knowing the area, so you can just check one out from there in the area you want and usually you end up in some cool place. So far almost every place has been very good.
After breakfast we drove up to Santa Barbara and on the way we stopped by at a quiet beach in Malibu, where we saw dolphins(or sharks..)!! We took the Pacific Coast highway and it was so pretty all the way up. In Santa Barbara the humidity had created clouds/mist by the shoreline and it made it even prettier.
In Santa Barbara we first went to see the harbor and enjoyed a nice lunch in a very lively seafood restaurant. I ordered a Mai Tai and I think the bartender poured in a whole bottle of whisky as it was so strong even I couldn't finish it(I even tried making the vodkaface, and it did not work). Of course we had to check out the shopping street, so we headed to the main street, State St.
Our first stop was at a shop called Marshall's and have to say, it was such a weird place to shop at. I guess it was kind of an outlet store for brands. For example there were clothes from Michael Kors for $20 and Ralp Lauren shoes for $30. I don't know if this one was not such a good one, but the stuff seemed to be kind of bad quality, "leftovers". I did find a travel pillow and sport bras. Somehow we ended up using way too much time exploring all the shops and got back to the hotel not until 8pm or something. It was kind of scary to drive in the dark when we had no idea where we should actually go. We rented a car for 9 days and with that we got a Samsung tab for navigating, and it has already honestly saved our lives. With it we also have a hotspot WiFi so thats the reason for my realtime instagramming ;-)

I have so many pics taken already but I won't be able to transfer them on my laptop as I forgot the cable for the camera home. So after our holiday I will probably be posting them and for now, we need to settle for these iPhone photos..

20 February 2014

Hallo from Helsinki-Vantaa

I just left our belongings to the baggage drop and now we are basically on our way! Or at least our bags are, if we don't manage to get to the flight. We are staying over at the airport Hilton, which is like 200 m from the Terminal 2 so I have a feeling we might make it to the flight, even though it means a 6am wake-up..

This day passed by so fast and honestly I can't even remember what I did. At work there was so much going on, and trying to of course get everything done before leaving. The month will also change during my vacation so that meant a little extra work. Also, I don't feel like its Thursday at all. I was supposed to see my friend here in Helsinki, but when I was ready from the check-in it was so late already and who knew it takes an hour to get to the city  center :-D
Now I will enjoy some room service, watch olympic figure skating, finish of my (kind of out of control) Google map for things to do in LA and wait for dad to land and pick up the car. I am so ready, and in need of this vacation. I can't wait to witness the sun shining ;-)

Planning for Los Angeles / What to shop

Well, someone who knows me, my shopping list made three weeks(or months...) prior to our trip might not come as a total surprise. I had to do a list to avoid going crazy in one of the best shopping countries in the world. I need to keep myself focused on what I need/want right now. Especially while living at my parents.. Let's be honest, there isn't much spare space for excessive piles of clothes, heh.. I bet once I get inside a mall, I absolutely need every white sweater I can see ;-)
How gorgeous are these new season colors!?

  • My list starts with an A. Being the oh-so-lovely Diego bag from Alexander Wang, for probably the hundredth time on this blog. I _will_ be on a hunt for this beauty and for god's sake, if I can't find it in LA, I give up(and order it online). 
  • Wallet
  • New sunglasses
  • Make-up (Naked pallet, MAC, Beauty Blender, Benefit...)
  • New make-up brushes
  • Victoria's secret ...  might loose my mind(and money) :-)
  • Vans, Jeffrey Campbell, Nike
  • Sports clothes and new trainers(maybe?)
  • Basics; t-shirts, tops, longsleeves...

One day we are devoting for an outlet city called Citadel Outlets. In New York, we always visit Woodbury and I have made some awesome finds from there, especially from Nike, Adidas and other sport clothes. So we have to go and see how the outlet city in LA will be. Hopefully a good one too :-)

Of course I have to leave room for extempore wanties, so this is just an outline. Ready, set, let's SHOP!

19 February 2014

Planning for Los Angeles / What to pack

For quite a while now I have been wondering what I should pack with me. We will be gone for only nine days, so I really don't want to overpack and then ponder upon if everything will fit on the way back. So a list had to be done and outfits planned well. The weather is not making this any easier. The weather app on my iPhone has been my loyal friend for the past few weeks. Trying to figure out how the overall weather will be, is it warm enough for summer dresses, bare legs and a denim jacket or do I still need trousers, sweaters and scarves?

According to the estimations, its sunny and around 25 degrees in celsius. So it should be summer. But I have a feeling that 26 C in Los Angeles is no where near comparable to 26 C in Finland..

For now, this is what I have been planning to pack(check-in, carry-on and a small purse):
-Travel outfit x2: something comfy, warm and of course a big scarf to use as a pillow/blanket
-Day outfits for going around: dresses, skirts, jeans; t-shirts, tops, sweaters
-Shoes: trainers, flats, sandals, one pair of high heels?
-Sporty clothes for hiking
-Jewellery, a hat, a lighter scarf
-Cosmetics pouch
-Tights, socks, undies...

Thats about it. Its interesting to see how my packings will turn out, and after the trip see if I even wore everything. That's the plan though. On wednesday I have to go trough everything for the last time and think everything trough. This time I don't want to be paying for overweight luggage. And now we don't even have dad with us to take part of my stuff to his bag ;-D

18 February 2014

Planning for Los Angeles / Things to do

Since we booked our flights to Los Angeles I have been collecting a kind of a to-do list on one excel file. On one sheet there are all the things to do categorized, the second sheet is devoted to Citadel Outlet city and the third is for my shopping list (trying to not go out of control with my shoppings ;-)).

These are just few things I picked out from the list to mainly make myself even more exited about Friday. As if I would need any motivation for that, but anyways. On Thursday we will stay over at a hotel in Helsinki, as our flight leaves at 8am and then on Friday we are off to the city of Angels! Still can't believe we are actually going. Before christmas when we booked the trip, it felt such a far away thing to be doing but now its only four days ahead. Let's see how many things we can see and do, but mainly the point is to enjoy the beautiful city and the amazing shopping opportunities ;-)

During the week, I want to.. Shop(who knew?), go to cute cafés, see the amazing view over the city and visit all the beaches! Also on the list are: manicure and a blow-dry at a Drybar, flea and farmers market and of course Whole Foods! I literally can not wait :-)
Just a few things...

17 February 2014

Recipe book: Carrot-pecan cupcakes with coffee topping

On Valentine's day I wanted to do some sweet treats for my family and a friend I was meeting that evening. Valentine's day is not anything other than a normal day to me, but its always nice to do something special for your loved ones, even if its just something little.

In Germany I bought this "10 000 cupcakes" recipe book from Urban Outfitters and so far I have experimented two different types of cupcakes according to the book. So quite a few left ;-)

On friday I did a carrot-pecan cupcake, chose a coffee-cream cheese topping and decorated them with cute sprinkles. I think they came out good, even though I was pretty doubtful during the process. As an english/american recipe the ingredients and measures are different from what I am used to. For example, in this recipe they use "vegetable oil" instead of butter and grams of sugar instead of deciliters.

  • Mix together 1½ dl of vegetable oil, 200g of sugar and two eggs °C
  • Add 225 g of flour, 1½ tsp of cooking powder and 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • Combine 175 g of grated carrots and 50 g crushed pecan to the mixture
  • Divide into cupcake tray
  • Bake for 25-30 min in 180

  • Whisk together 100 g of cream cheese and 50 g of butter
  • Add in 250 g of icing sugar, 4 tbsp of coffee and beat until smooth

  • Extrude topping on top of chilled down cupcakes
  • Decorate as you wish 

11 February 2014


Hoi kaikki tamperelaiset, lähiseudulle asuvat tai kaupungissa tällä viikolla vierailevat!

Vein seuraavaksi kuudeksi päiväksi eli 11.-16.2014 väliseksi ajaksi hyvin edullisia vaatteita; neuleita, teeppareita, housuja, mekkoja, hameita... Tampereen Radio Kirppikselle osoitteeseen Laukontori 12, 33200 Tampere. Pöytä 104. So, go and shop!

8 February 2014

Recipe book: Lemon Meringue Pie

Today I felt like baking, and this time I wanted to try something completely different. Usually I go for the easy recipes such as cupcakes, brownies etc. I have tried macaroons and of course made many cakes, but now it was time for something completely unlike.
I wasn't after anything too sweet, so I looked up some lemony recipes and came across a lemon meringue pie. It didn't seem to be very hard to make either, but looked really pretty.

I took the recipe from a Finnish blog Kinuskikissa.

This is what you need...

  • Whisk together 3 ¼ dl flour and 2 tbsp sugar 
  • Add 175 g butter and pick to crumble
  • Pour ½ dl water and mix fast
  • Press into a pieplate and bake for 15 min in 200 °C
  • Combine 2¼ dl sugar and 4 tbsp of flour into a kettle
  • Measure 1¾ dl of water and 1dl of lemon juice (+lemon zest)
  • Stir together adding 5 egg yolks and 50 g of butter until bubbly
  • Immediately pour over the crust
  • Whip 5 egg whites into a hard foam
  • Add 1¼ dl of sugar and keep whisking
  • Extrude on top of the cake
  • Bake for another 5 min
...and this is what you get
My try was ok I think. The crust was not cooked completely trough, maybe I had a smaller pie plate or something. Also the meringue did not turn out the best. Should have kept it lower and a little bit longer in the oven. The overall outcome was pretty good, I even made a few little meringue buttons from the leftovers to be used later. Now I will go and make myself a cup of tea and take another piece of this yumminess ;-)

Saturday / Olympics / Running

So far my saturday has been pretty good. It was so nice to wake up without an alarm but instead our little dog licking my face. I have to admit that I am really not a morning-person, so even 7:15 am wake ups are super annoying to me. But still, now after five mornings I have finally kind of starting to get the fact that if you just get up to the first alarm ring your day starts way better than pressing that snooze button over and over again. After a nutritious breakfast and a cup of coffee, you feel like a total different person than an hour ago thinking "why did I not go to sleep earlier last night"..

Benefits of working late hours
Anyways, I started my morning by watching the olympics. I made myself an awesome breakfast and went trough all the olympics news and gossips. Then it was time for the mens slopestyle finals. I had huge hopes for our Finnish contestants Peetu Piiroinen and Roope Tonteri but even though they did not rank as hoped, it was such a great first ever slope style olympic final! The judges' scoring was also pretty interesting to say the least. The winner Sage Kotsenburg really earned all of those 93,5 points he scored. After the competition there was a lot of speculations about the judging, but to me slopestyle is more than just the big jumps, as half of the run includes rails. With the unexpected and really different grabs I think Kotsenburg stood out from the others, as everyone else kind of just focused on the jumps, doubles and triples, and not being able to land them proper.. There was a lot of risk taking, which for sure led to an exciting competition.
Enni Rukajärvi carrying the flag
Next up was the  ladies' Skiathlon in which we even had four skiers in. Of course, the norwegians are a total overpowering bunch when it comes to skiing but I think its important to keep in mind that its not impossible to beat them. The start was really good for us and we had I think all our skiers inside the leading group. When changing to from classic to free, you could really start seeing differences. Everyone started to get really tired from all the HUGE hills on the course. At the best they cruised down the hills at a 70km/h speed. Gosh. Our own Aino-Kaisa Saarinen fought until the very last meters and ended up being fifth over all. From 61 contestants that is just amazing! Of course we were even expecting medals, but the norwegians and Kalla of course are just beasts and when you think they are done and too tired, they still have that one extra storage of energy!

Watching olympics is a great motivations for my own exercising I think. When watching all those athletes competing and really giving all, it makes you feel super lazy just laying on the sofa, haha. So I went running. I really wanted to go skiing but its been raining so there isn't that much snow left and the track doesn't look that tempting.. I love running, but especial now after quite a few weeks taking a break, it feels like you would be starting from scratch all over again. But when I keep in mind that it gets easier and more enjoyable after just a couple of times makes me kind of just suck it up and keep on running. Also the feeling after a good run is just amazing.

My little sister got a Microcar and now she will be my chauffeur haha
I just had to come and write about my morning so far, but as usual I kind of departed from my plan.. Now I will enjoy a little sauna session, maybe do a facial. At 16:00 starts the men's skiing I believe, so will check that out and for the evening I have some exciting baking plans made. Let's see how they turn out!

4 February 2014


This getting back to reality and normal day routines is taking over me. Never thought working regular hours and communicating with several different/new people would be so exhausting! Feels like my brain is working on slow motion right now.. 
Today was my second day at work and oh gosh, I am feeling so tired already. Today's 6am wake up could be the reason, though. Thank god I have a nice job and I enjoy doing what I do :-) The next few following months will be pretty exciting work-wice too as I will be taking part in one project besides my day-to-day tasks. And of course, the days will get easier once I get used to working eight hours (and driving two) a day.
Since I came home, and actually already in Holland I kind of started drinking coffee. And especially filter coffee I mean, the real thing. For twentyone-and-a-half years I was convinced that basic black filtered coffee is the worst thing you can have(well, not literally but you know..) and cappuccino/frapuccino/cafe latte was my choice. Then one day there was a coffee for 50 cents offer and I went for it. Today I drank two cups.

That was my coffee story, You are very welcome and now my brain is totally empty, haha :-D