Posts Tagged With: random

This or That: Coke or Pepsi?

You must pick one – bonus points for telling me more about your choice.

Me? I’m a Coke girl all the way. Most people I know are Coke people, and I wonder if it’s a regional thing. Where I come from, “Coke” includes all flavors and colors of the fizzy drink category, as in:

  • “Get me a Coke.”
  • “What kind?”
  • “Sprite.”  *actual conversation

Sadly, at some point in the last ten years, after moving out of Texas, I switched to “soda” as the all-encompassing category. Doesn’t make me less of a Coke person though. It’s my go-to medication for migraines and hangovers, and NO, Pepsi does NOT cut it. Not even close.

Is Monopoly money ok?

So what’s your choice: Coke or Pepsi? Leave a comment below by next Thursday and you’ll be entered to win a 5×7 print of this photo, taken on our recent trip to Lapland (where I had a hard time finding a Coke, those darn Pepsi people…):

Northern Lights

Winner of last week’s This or That is Tracie!  Tracie, email me your address and I’ll get that photo sent out to you (I also have a little something else for you!).  sara_sligar at hotmail dot com

Categories: This or That? | Tags: , , , | 11 Comments

Easter in Finland

This is what happens when you quickly, with about two hours before an Easter egg hunt, make an Easter basket and decorate some eggs. Pretty impressed with myself, actually.  I just grabbed what I had on hand in the craft pile and went crazy.

Easter eggs in basket

After four Easters here in Finland (has it really been 4?!), we finally tried mämmi, a traditional Easter dish here.  Mämmi is made with rye flour and rye malt (among other things) and allowed to sweeten naturally before being baked.  I picked some up from the grocery store and put it in a bowl with some vanilla cream.  It tastes like molasses, and after the first bite Stephen was done with it, but I finished the small bowl, and although the texture was a bit grainy, I will say that the taste grew on me with each bite.


Easter is a great weekend to travel around here, because both Friday and Monday are a holiday, so it’s a good, long four day weekend.  The stores are also closed for most of the time – Friday, Sunday, and Monday, all day, since those are official holidays.  On Saturday, the grocery store is open, but the Post Office and Liquor Store are both closed.  It makes me wonder what the sales figures are on the Thursday beforehand, since everyone is out shopping like Southerners bracing for an inch of snow…

Oddly, we’ve never traveled for Easter Weekend, mostly because we put off planning anything until it’s too late.  Honestly, after our trip to Lapland a few weeks ago, we’re rethinking our travel plans for the year.  Traveling with a baby is hard!  I hope it was mostly because Baby J was sick, and it’s really not as difficult as it seemed.  Our takeaway lesson #1 was: get an apartment, don’t stay in a hotel.  Maybe that will help.  I should plan something relatively easy so we can find out.  Hmmm…..where to go…..


Categories: Random | Tags: , , , , | 7 Comments

This or That: Lie or Tell the Truth?

I’ve never been a big fan of April Fool’s Day, so I tend to ignore it as much as possible. I love the idea of a good gag, but it seems people get mean more often than not, so instead of a fun gag it’s a men-spirited practical joke. I just don’t see the fun in that.

As if April Fools Day wasn’t bad enough, apparently Tell a Lie Day is coming up in a couple of days. Because people dont lie enough as it is, we need to have a day dedicated to celebrating and encouraging lies. I just…I can’t even.

So here’s today’s This or That. Two scenarios.

  • One classic Hollywood: You see your best friend’s spouse kissing another person – do you tell your friend, or not?
  • And another classic: Your wife/best friend asks if this dress makes her look fat – do you lie or tell the truth?

Personally…Oy. That’s a rough one. Do I tell my friend her spouse was kissing someone else? Yes. Do I tell her that dress makes her look fat? “I don’t think that fabric would do anyone any favors. Here, try this dress instead.” Which is a yes.  I really dislike lying.

What about you? Lie or Tell the Truth? Let me know in the comments – everyone who comments by next Thursday will be entered into a drawing to win a 5×7 print of this photo:

Rauma, Finland, covered in frost.

Rauma, Finland, covered in frost.

Also, I need to announce winners of the last two giveaways!

  • For This or That: Chris or Liam – Jen, as the only blog commenter, wins! (I did have some other people comment on facebook, and Chris is apparently the winner all the way around. That’s okay – more Liam for me!) Jen will be receiving a lovely postcard I picked up in Rovaniemi!
  • For This or That: Chocolate or Vanilla – Megan wins a lovely postcard from Rauma!
Categories: This or That? | Tags: , | 7 Comments

Inspiration Tuesday: Nine in the Afternoon

I’ve always wondered if the Panic! At The Disco’s song “Nine in the Afternoon” was inspired by the Finnish summer.

9pm on a summer day in Finland.  Yes, really!

9pm on a summer day in Finland. Yes, really!

And for your listening/viewing pleasure:

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On Mombragging, the Finnish School System, and life

I’m so embarrassed. I had a friend come over last week to help administer Baby J’s medicine, and before she left I said, “Oh, look what he did for the first time today! He picked up the ball and put it in the hole and pushed it down! ….ohmygod, I’m that mom, I’m bragging, I’m so sorry.”

Apparently, the Finnish school system, long touted as being amazing, is changing its curriculum. They will be teaching by topic now rather than by subject, which seems…awesome. Instead of a history lesson and a science lesson and an economics lesson, let’s study the Black Plague and look at what happened, the science behind it, and the economic, political, and historical ramifications. To me, it seems like a much better use of time, and a way to keep kids more engaged. After all, life isn’t math and science and history, it’s events, and they affect and are affected by multiple things. (I think some home school studies do it this way as well, which I find intriguing…)

While in the hospital last week, Baby J got a jar of peaches. He had not tried them yet, because I was hadn’t seen them in the stores fresh (I have yet to buy jarred food for him). He enjoyed the peaches, but I may not be able to give them to him again, because for the rest of the day I was singing, “Peaches come from a can, they were put there by a man, in a factory dooooowwntoooowwn.”

I’m feeling really overwhelmed again, like I can’t cope and do everything I need to do. Part of it may be the “recovery” from vacation followed by a hospital stay, trying to catch up on everything. But part of it is certainly that Baby J is more mobile and curious and able, thus requiring a lot more watching. I used to be able to do dishes while he was awake, now I can’t have the dishwasher open or he’s in it. I used to be able to do laundry, now he’s pulling up on and mouthing the toilet. I can’t let him play on the landing while I’m on the computer, he’s in there with me playing with cables or trying to get himself run over by the office chair. And since naptime was supposed to be writing/office time, and now it’s dishes/laundry time….well, you see where I’m going with this. For a couple of months now, I’ve been playing with the idea of getting someone in to watch him a few hours a week, and its becoming more and more necessary, at least if I want to get anything accomplished. I think I may need to cut out a bit of time spent with Stephen in the evenings, as well.  😦

I’m almost done editing the photos from our trip to Lapland, so I hope to post about that soon. I took 399 photos (not including the ones I took on my phone), and I’ve edited that down to 177, 77 of which are photos of the Northern Lights. Those are actually the only ones I have left to edit, and they will likely take me a couple more days. Until then, I’ll leave you with this:

Northern Lights


Categories: Random | Tags: , , , | 5 Comments

Tuesday Inspiration


“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”  –Wayne Dyer

What can you look at in a different way?  Maybe it’s as simple as saying “I get to make dinner” rather than “I have to make dinner.”

I get to make dinner, because we can afford to put food on the table.  Many people aren’t so lucky.  Appreciate what you have.


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On bedtime stories, Four Weddings, and Instagram

Good Night Moon “has lulled generations of children to sleep” according to it’s back cover copy. But neither Stephen nor I had the book when we were kids. In fact, the first time I ever heard of it was when I watched the move Playing by Heart. I’m curious as to how many of you had this book as a kid.  Were Stephen and I the wierdos for never having heard of it? Or have they just done some very good marketing to make people think this was bigger than it really was? (We did get it for Baby J.)

As mentioned before, I don’t watch much TV during the day. When I do turn it on, I’m never sure what I’m going to get. Sometimes I catch the show Four Weddings, and I have to say…I rather like this show. I’m not much for reality TV, but I do like it when its not awful, as in mean spirited or embarrasing in an “Oh, god, is this what people think Americans are like?” kind of way.  I love The Amazing Race, and we watch Top Chef.  But Four Weddings has the potential to be really catty, and it’s not.  All the brides seem to really get along, and no one is particularly nasty.  I like it.

I joined Instagram! Stephen asked why, and I really don’t have a great answer to that. I’d like to do a photo a day thing again, and that seems to be the easiest way to do it (photos won’t languish on my camera for several weeks, and I dont bombard the blog with a ton of photos), plus, as I told him, “social media presence.” If I ever do manage to complete and submit a book for publication, a social media presence is a good thing to have. So, yeah, Instagram. But similar to this blog, no photos of Baby J, at least distinguishable ones.

And maybe one day I’ll actually twitter. I’ve tried a couple of times, but I just.don’ I have such a hard time reading tweets, what with all the @ and #. And I don’t really want to spend hours reading through all the tweets of the people I follow. Some people tweet way too much. Let’s say you follow 100 people, and on average those 100 people tweet 20 times a day. That’s 2000 tweets in a 24 hour period that I then have to read. That’s way too much! I just don’t get it.

Anyway, as mentioned above, I’ve been considering doing a photo a day thing again.  I did it in 2010, and it may have very well saved my sanity during the worst year of my life.  I’m just not ready to commit to anything yet.  If I do it, I want to make sure I’m doing it to better my photography skills, not just to take a picture.  So…we’ll see.
Have any of you tried doing a photo a day challenge?  What did it do for you?  Are you on Instagram?  Come find me!  Did you read Good Night Moon as a kid?  Do you watch Four Weddings?  Let me know in the comments below!
Categories: Random | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

This or That: Chocolate or Vanilla?

You must choose one, and you must explain why. But you can put whatever spin on it you want. (Ice cream, pudding, cake, dessert, ideas, relationships, or whatever else you think breaks down into those two categories.)

Personally, I choose vanilla. A lot of people think vanilla is boring, and people who choose vanilla are uninteresting and unadventurous. I argue the opposite. Vanilla is a base. If you have vanilla ice cream on hand, but want something chocolaty, you can add Hersheys syrup. Want strawberries? Add them. In the mood for cinnamon ice cream (my personal favorite, but usually not commercially available), just add cinnamon. Add blueberries, raspberries, lingonberries. Mix in fudge or chocolate chips or crushed up cookies. A world of flavors in one tub of ice cream. And if you’re in the mood for vanilla ice cream? Well, there’s not much you can do to make chocolate ice cream vanilla.

So what’s your choice, Chocolate or Vanilla? (And remember, it doesn’t have to be nice cream!) Let me know in the comments – everyone who comments within the next week will get entered into a drawing to get a lovely postcard from Beautiful Finland! 🙂


Categories: This or That? | Tags: , , | 9 Comments

Tuesdays – amiright?

It has long been my contention that Tuesdays are the worst days of the week, and here’s why:

  • Wednesday:  Middle of the week, halfway through the week, hump day – it’s all downhill from here.
  • Thursday:  Almost Friday!  You can make it!
  • Friday:  It’s Friday, Friday, gotta get down it’s Friday
  • Saturday and Sunday need no explanation.
  • Monday: You at least have the leftover good vibes from the weekend holding you steady(ish)

But Tuesday?  Tuesday has nothing going for it.  It’s just a crap day all around.

Three horrible facts: 1. Today isn't Friday 2. Tomorrow isn't Friday 3. Even the day after tomorrow isn't Friday.

Image from the Whisper App

With that in mind, I’ve been thinking about doing a regular Tuesday feature.  Nothing too complex, something that’s easy to do and post and move on, because we all know how bad I am about posting regularly…

So until next Tuesday, I leave you this little nugget:

“Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do.  Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.”  –Ella Fitzgerald

Categories: Inspiration Tuesday | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments

On cereal, cauliflower, and baby nap schedules

I’ve become a Cheerios mom. Not so incredibly happy about that, for some reason. I mean, having snacks on hand is a good thing, I recognize that, and cheerios is easy. But…it’s so cliché. 😦

Ever since I bought Cheerios, I’ve had this crazy craving for Cinnamon Toast Crunch. I know I’ve seen it somewhere around here, but not at my normal grocery store, I guess. The hunt is on!

While I’ve had cauliflower at restaurants before, I’ve never made it at home. So last weekend I bought a head and roasted it this week. Very good, but… Wow, it was stinky. Stephen walked in from work and asked if the sewer had backed up. So, yeah, as much as I enjoyed it, I don’t know if I’ll subject the house to the stink again. Baby J liked it, though, so maybe it’s worth it.

I’ve been working on a schedule, for various housework duties and “extracurricular” pursuits. On paper it looks good, and doable. We’ll see how it works out once I start following it (which will be after our upcoming trip to Lapland). And I still need to find time to fit in workouts, so we’ll see. I’ve worked out a couple of times while Baby J was awake, and it went okay, mostly, so I may do that rather than try to fit it in during naps (since that’s when I want to write). It’s not so much the workout that I have a hard time with, it’s the stuff before and after: putting shoes on, wrangling myself into two sports bras, then the cool down and struggling *out* of the two sports bras. I love workouts for which I don’t need to wear sports bras…or shoes, for that matter… 🙂

After 2+ months of struggling, Baby J has finally transitioned to two naps. Then this weekend, for whatever reason, he basically self-adjusted to daylight savings time without us doing anything. Except, DST in Finland doesn’t start for three more weeks!!! So he’s taking three naps today, and hopefully will get back on the correct schedule, and then even more hopefully we’ll be able to adjust him once DST actually does happen.  :-/

Stephen and Baby J are off to the store, so I’m going to post this, then sit back and relax.  Maybe watch a cheesy chick flick on Netflix.  Ah, cheeeeese.


Categories: Random | Tags: , | 5 Comments

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