Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year to all :o)

Took a long walk today after doing some light grocery shopping for my very own New Years Eve - I didn't plan to be home at New Years but it just happened due to changed travel plans (see earlier blogs). And really I don't mind at all - celebrated both my birthday and Christmas abroad this year so why not the last night of this year as well ?

Well I shopped for all my favourite dish - even bought a bottle of bobly (and no can't drink it all - but what is New Years without it). And there are two 15 minute tv-programs, that everybody will watch. Yes they/I will turn on the TV on NewYears eve and see them - totally tradition - have even introduced them to people that have moved to our country, and now they are obsessed with them too.

Novelista Barista talked about being a tourist in her own city in her blog - while I took that walk today, I was reminded, that I live close to some of the biggest tourist attractions in the city. Hmmm.... my mind began to wander, and have now decided that I might not travel after all in the beginning of the New Year but instead be a tourist in my own city. I have seen a lot of the seights, but there are still plenty I haven't seen.

Then I looked down to the coffee cup in my hand - then I got a new crazy idea: Why not create a second blog with pics of coffee cups from various coffee houses? I mean, I do try out a lot of them while travelling, so here goes...... I am going to create "CoffeeCup - want to see my collection?"

Happy New Year

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Homemade bread

Maybe you've seen WASA's crispbread on OPRAH - anyway I was brought up with this type of bread - well different varities actually, and its good with hardboiled eggs, cheese, jam and soo much more.... My breakfast usually included 1 or 2 pieces of this type of bread.

A colleague of mine brought homebaked crispbread to the office one day - with many type of seeds in it - YUMMI :o) I got a copy of the recipe and bought all the ingredients. That was one month ago.

So whenever the blogger Melanie has mentioned WilliamsSonoma in her blog I have thought about trying this recipe, but haven't gotten around to it.... until today that is.

And while my crispbread were baking in the oven I watched Nigella Christmas, that I recorded on my DVR while I was in Barcelona. Those recipes she presented - wow I can actually eat a lot of the stuff she cooked, as most ingredients are allowed in my MS diet, I am soo getting her book via Amazon :o) I already have her Nigella Express, which has helped me cook lots of times. Why buy fastfood? Most of her recipes hardly take any time to make, and I always make double portions so I can put them into my freezer - that way I always have fastfood.

Now I am only left with one question to myself: Why did I stop baking bread, cookies etc.? I did it all the time, when I studied at the university. And the time invested really pays off, since the results is usually yum-yum. Maybe I just discovered a 2010 New Year resolution: make more homemade bread. :o)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Time for creative ideas

"Sometimes I wish that I could just sit down and get started on the cards without having to "force my brain" for creative ideas..." - ok those words came out of my mouth a couple of years ago, and now I always have a piece of paper with me to scribble down ideas... my colleagues still laugh when I pull yesterdays receipt for groceries out of my bag and start making notes about a new card idea.
Since I don't have to be back at work until 3 weeks from now (vacation time), I have given myself the following "tasks": try to make minimum one card per day - read a good book for ½ -1 hour per day - 1 hour walk every day (there are plenty of parks in my area). I haven't allocated specific timeslots everyday .... it simply wouldn't feel like vacation if I did.

It makes me "forget" all about the MS for a while (as in "healthy thoughts"), and to ignore a noisy, grumpy next door neighbour. Making those cards is soo far from my daily job, which is why it is so relaxing to make them. That might just be my biggest argument for not setting up my own business making cards - then there would be a pressure on making cards within limited time and putting the creativity to a test.....

Sunday, December 27, 2009

When everything else fail...

Went out last night for a cup of coffee at what seemed to be a cosy local coffee shop chain...

Well that visit lasted for about 5 seconds, as I was met with smoke.... Yikes! Welcome the the 21st century where smoking apparently still a allowed in public places in some countries.

All during my childhood I was subject to secondhand smoking and doctors found that to be the 'cause of my asthma (well that actually dissapeared when the MS took over) - and yes I am a non-smoker myself...

So when that decision failed, I turned to "good old" Starbucks - where smoking is not allowed. I know... sometimes I wish that I could turn back times ... but in occations like this, I am happy that there is a smoking ban in public this type of progress through time is just up my alley....

The picture is of another local Starbucks here in Barcelona......

Friday, December 25, 2009

Is goal free living possible?

I am currently in Spain - and Christmas is upon us. Have just enjoyed dinner in the hotel restaurant as my feet would have killed me, if I chose a restaurant away from the hotel. But enjoyed the calm surroundings and good food, that was not too pricy.

I always have a moleskin note in bag - it has been part of the "inventory" for that past 5+ years. Scribble down quotes from books/newspapers/movies, display discriptions from museum artefacts, curious fact regarding various traditions etc.

An entry that I have comletely forgotten somehow, "screamed" at me - in Stephen Shapiro's book "Goal Free Living", he writes aboud several secrets to living a goal free life: "Use a compass, not a map" is one of them.

Instead of writing New Years resolutions, one should rather find one word to describe the following year - that word will more than likely have mutiple meanings.

Well, didn't have a hard time finding my word to describe 2010 - actually it has been waiting idle on the tip of my tongue for a long time now:
Creativity as exploring if more of my ideas will come true:

  • Spreading joy when sending a homemade/selfmade card instead of off-the-shelves cards

  • As in learning new creative techniques

  • Maybe making some money on the creative things - thus funding other creative ideas

  • ...and the list could go on.

What is your word describing 2010?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Powerfull word - confirmed:o)

This time tomorrow I will be in Spain on vacation - I really didnt believe that I was going anywhare until I saw the word "confirmed".
Totally "me"-time, where I can explore a Christmas decorated Spain with my camera - read some books in a local coffee house, making sketches to some cards, that I want to make.... just let the creative side take over for a while.
I still have some vacation days left when I eventually return to my home, but have thought about making a lot of homemade cards, as friends and colleagues allways tell me, that I could make money on my cards. Up until now I have rejected that idea, but since they have repeated it and ordered cards from me....maybe just maybe I could start someting ....Gonna make big batch of different cards to different occations and see where this is going....
Merry Christmas / Happy holidays / Feliz Navidad

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Women of Grace

Sunday... just want to forget all about this week's events and not think of my postponed holiday...

What is better than doing it in the company of two women with grace... well not face to face as that is not possible but doing some of the things I love - watching a movie at the local cinema and reading a book.

"Coco Before Chanel" - Audrey Tatou has been one of my favourite acresses ever since Amélie, and her portrait of Coco Chanel is amazing. Everybody knows Chanel when fashion is mentioned - but how many know about her background?

A guy thought it was ok to check his email on his blackberry while watching the movie - some of us asked him to turn it of, as the light from the blackberry's screen was disturbing us "oh no can't do that - it is important issues" ??!! One of the cinema's employee's gave him an ultimatum - turn it off or go home to his wife instead of being at the cinema with his mistress ... he really hit a nerve, as the guy's face turned white and his mistress was soo soon as the movie ended they went outside in a hurry.

Second woman of grace: Audrey Hepburn.

I bought the book "What Would Audrey Do?" a while ago and started reading it today.

There are fun bits in the book that will never apply to me - but on the other hand, there might just be a few things that's worth considering.

Just writing this entry made me remember an exhibition (on loan from the MET) I saw in Chicago abouth Jacueline Kennedy - The White House Years where all the beautiful and memorable outfits were on display.... just browsing through the catalogue from that exihibition right now.... maybe, that's why I enjoy watching "Project Runway" - to see how the designers get their inspiration :o)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Is Christmas over already....??

I know .... reuse of picture, but this Santa is one of my favourite X-mas ornaments... and haven't quite had the time to take more pictures.

One of my colleagues is off sick, and we don't know the return date yet.... therefore my X-mas vacation has been postponed undefinately. Sigh!! I really need that vacation to recharge my batteries.... maybe just maybe I can find some extended big-city weekend, so I wont be home at the x-mas holidays but still able to work between X-mas and New Years. Guess the major travelling will be done in January.

Todays blog post from The Novelista Barista really got to me - I LOVE DOGS - but am not allowed to keep one in my building. That is actually a good thing, because with all the travelling I wouldn't be a suitable dog owner. I immediately donated some money so the dogs can get more blankets and get a bit warmer in this cold weather - maybe that is my chance to be a "secret Santa" to some dogs needing a good home. So please support Novelista Barista's initiative

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Expressions you love........

"La-la-la. Fingers in ears. Not listening"

At work this expession is often used by colleagues and myself - usually together with big smiles and laughter...... and you know somehow this expression is actually universal, as I have seen Russians, Italians, French smile when I have used this expression towards my male collegues... sometimes I am the only woman present, but they would never say anything that could offend me. Thats the cool ting about this expression - it fits so many occasions :o)

What is your favourite expression??

Monday, December 7, 2009

Old style communication

In one of my first blog posts I wrote about writing letters - well that is still my most cherished kind of communication.

I write emails all day long at my job and therefore dont consider them to be very personal when it comes to my own private mailbox - for me it is for leaving short messages: unless there is some vital info involved. Ok the monthly list of bills to be paid is still preferred at the mailbox instead of using vast amount of paper..... At work emails are necessary when communicating to people worldwide and also for written reference, that might be needed in claim cases etc.

Then there is the phone - sometimes I actually miss when it was attached to a cord.... yes if you weren't a home you might have to queue up at a phonebooth, and you would actually miss calls when you were not at home, and an answering machine would pick up a message... Now you are never alone - it could ring at anytime...

Several people I now instantly picks up the mobile, when they either leave their home or their job and chats away - usually about "nothing".... a lot of them while driving a car, a bicycle etc... Hello??!! Dont they know how many traffic accidents that actually could be avoided if they weren't on the phone.

The job equipped me with a mobile - so basically I am available 24/7 - but usually it does not ring at night nor in the weekends: the most times it has rung in the weekends are when my presence is suddenly urgently requested in another country.

I no longer have the old fashioned phone - a landline number is too expensive, so I actually have a private mobile phone as well.... and if I am not at home it is actually turned off.... yes after 7 years of addiction to my mobile phone I discovered the off-button :o)

Friday, December 4, 2009

American Pictures

If you have ever seen this picture - chances are that you know about "American Pictures - either as a slide-show/multimedia show or the book with Jacob Holts amazing pictures and stories about the Americans: black or white, rich or poor etc.

His shows have been seen by many people - especially across the USA and Denmark - he has touched, provoked thousands and tousands of people.

If you ever get the chance to see one or his lectures - it an experience worth your time.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

On a mission....

I've given myself this week to complete the shopping for X-mas and birthdays in December - one thing that needs to be bought will have to wait another 2 weeks: my X-mas vation.....

Am already on the reach to reach my goal, as I bought 4 birthday presents and another 3 for X-mas... plus finished 5 homemade birthday cards and 2 for X-mas.... And the best thing: still within the budget.

There is a dilemma regarding X-mas presents in my family: my sister-in-law insists that my 2 nieces only gets items from the wishlist - which I never honour ... why?? ... well followed that "rule" for years, but she never looked at the wishlist from me (even though she insisted to get one) and gave me books I already own etc. ("Oh!! I forgot to ensure that you are able to exhange this" - and you never can)... My nieces however think that my travelling is "soo cool" and they insist on getting purchases from abroad. I try to spend a lot of time with them and actually listens to what they have to say - and so far I have been able to pick items for them, that they refuse to let out of their eyesight even for one minute......

I have the same "gift" for picking a present when it comes to the friends with who I exchange X-mas presents - but for me it's all about paying attention to very small details that actually makes the difference....

Then there are the X-mas cards - did I score an own goal when I started creating my own X-mas cards?? There is no way back: several of them have expressed that they are always looking forward to receive this years card (as well as birthday greetings etc...)
Well my friends stood by me after I got diagnosed with MS - so this is my way of paying them back.... :o)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Me-day or Mayday???

Today I just needed a me-day... Again this week Friday was crappy (incl. the annual company Christmas party) as events took an unexpected turn because I didnt have all the facts about my medicine....

It hard days like that to be positive, and when I am in the gloomy mood then I prefer to be on my own ... I dont want to say something to people that I dont really mean, that is "simply" caused by my bad mood.

I kinda feel like the Santa on todays photo - and still I decorated my appartment with some of my favorite Christmas ornaments and things because I want to hold on to the amount of Christmas spirit still inside me - without it, the month of December will be way too long or too hard. Turning the volume down on the number of Christmas events that I will participate in on behalf of my job and instead focus on the events with my friends......

And there it was.....

I just walked by a store in an area of the city, I don't usually go to....and there it was... my scooter.... Have forgotten all about it - and just seeing this in the window brought back childhood memories...... I just had to buy it - and it didn't cost much :o)

Remember bugging my parents and family to give me one of these, but noooo - got a red firetruck, a red London bus etc... but never the scooter.... I loved red... and I loved scooters ever since I watched the movie "Roman Holiday" with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck on tv - makes me smile when I see the scooters on the streets in Italy - and when scooters in general just had their renaissance a couple of years ago: everywhere you looked the Vespas ruled.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

From almost-panic-attach to happy face

Last Friday, the day just got worse and worse the closer we got to midnight. I just wanted to scream "LEAVE ME ALONE" and crawl into bed and forget all about Friday, November 20th.

The following day was a complete turn-around and my mood has been high since....


Well love my new haircut - looking in the mirror was kinda "Hey, long time no see!" - I gained weight after the MS diagnosis 7+ years ago, but the MS diet as "returned" my weigt to where I was just before the diagnosis - the new haircut suddenly made me realise that my face was back to normal.

Been travelling with my job and came home to the news, that I now have a "new" boss - its a person that I have been working closely and really respect... The job-situation lately made me wonder if I should get and get a job in a completely different area of expertise: I saw no progress, felt like having zero support from the boss and just confusing signals everywhere... Fells like an early Christmas :o)

Btw cant remember where I saw this towel, but it makes me smile

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Too many ideas

Still havent decided where I am going for my escape-my-family-Christmas holiday (see my post from yesterday)... and I keep getting new ideas about where to go.....

This is the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen (yes, she is tiny) - believe it or not, she's leaving Copenhagen next year to be part of the Danish pavillion at the World Expo in Shanghai next year... Not all Danes are comfortable with the fact, that she has to be away from her spot in Copenhagen Harbour for a while...

London - one of my favourite cities... I know my way around the city and no longer need a map as this city as come to my rescue a dusin+ times already. By now it feels like a home away from home.... and I always find places that I havent seen before... Uhhh LondonWalk - highly recommended - if you want to see another side of London you should chose one of the many walks offered for only 5-7£ (Jack the Ripper, Sherlock Holmes, GhostWalk, Charles Dickens Christmas Walk etc.)...

But choosing London again would just be too easy..... needs to be somewhere new... or should I take up one of the offers from my friends abroad to stay at their homes for a while.... ok maybe somewhere where I can at least communicate just a little bit..... ok - that would just leave it wide open, as I have insight in some of the following languages English, Japanese, French, Spanish, German, Danish (hence also some of the other Scandinavial languages) and a little Italian (no have never lived abroad and my parents can only speak their native language).... I am travelling alone which is why I prefer a place where I can understand what the locals are telling me....

Or maybe I should just find a place with this type of chairs - where I can start writing a book, that has been in my head for a long time - I actually dont think it will ever be published, but will instead be a "wow never knew that I could actually do it": see one thing is having the idea in my head, but getting it down on paper... That's a big challenge..... 'cause could I ever be patient enough to finish it??

Rumour has it, that the closer we get to Christmas the more vacations will be on sale due to this whole financial crisis thing, where people is now saving their money rather than saving it... I might pick one of the package-vacations on sale and simply let the best offer win...

Now somebody will freak out - but I dont need to plan my vacation in details. I'm used to my job offering to go somewhere (of course to work, but there is always a little spare time to meet the locals or see one or more seights) - sometimes only with one hour notice and then I have to be ready at the airport..... Some of my vacations actually arise as a kind of "spur of the moment"...

I dont see myself as crazy - but try to picture this: in high school I was one of the invisible girls, who would almost blend into the wall, shy beyond belief, who prefered to sit in a corner reading a good book (often more advance than the reading material my class usually picked).......

(Btw all the pictures has been captured by me on past vactions...)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Christmas ... Loving it - or hate it?

Well.... Despite all I love it. But there are some details I dont love - but refuse to let it spoil my Christmas...

The blog-post the other day from Melanie's Randomness hit it spot on: families can be a funny thing during Christmas. What is my family like then.... well when I saw the movie "Family Stone" it made me smile, as I recognised a lot....

My family.. well...

My mom has not accepted that I am actually able to live a fairly normal life despite being diagnosed with MS thus always commenting everyting I do "are you sure should be doing" this and that - "oh no that will be way to hard for you" etc... she has no confidence in my abilities what so ever... She is diagnosed with another disease, and she just gave up - didnt bother to find out, what she can and cannot do with that disease... Ergo - I feel like she's bringing me down....

My dad... well doesnt want to argue with my mother, because then she will be afterhim the following day... Somehow I dont blame him - on the other hand: I could use his support.

My sister in law doesn comprehend why I love my small apparment - and generally believe that I am stupid for not finding a bigger appartment (that opinion is luckily not shared by my brother), she constantly ask me when I am going to get kids (well, if it happens it happens - but it is not something that I am desperate for - and yes I do like kids) and "why can you not hold on to a boyfriend"......

Her husband - one of my two brothers is just like my dad....

My uncle always ask me "are you sure, that you are not a lesbian" - not accepting my answer being "No" - and he has seen some of my ex-boyfriends.... My aunt always tell people how food should be cooked... she is not a chef but used to work in a kitchen....

Then there is my absent brother - he cut contact with the family when I was 12 and nobody bothered ever to tell me, why he might have done it... I tried looking him up but invain - so every Christmas for years I was sad, because I felt like he was missing. The famility always teased so I always ended up with tears in my eyes. Some years ago he suddenly contacted me and asked for my help - he was stranded abroad and desperately needed to come home. I helped him - and never heard from him again... that is I know where he lives, but he is the one who should contact me and not the other way around. But now I have an adult view on his personality, so even thugh he owes me money for the airfare - I feel that I have closure and no longer miss him at the Christmas table..... My family got wind of me helping him out and now they complain about me not telling them where he lives etc how they would like him to participate at Christmas etc....

So when I dropped the bomb this year, that I was not going to be home for Christmas but instead going travelling... some of them went "Thank God - now we dont have to adjust the traditional Christmas food served in our family to adjust you MS-diet"

Ok that remark really hurt - there are some dishes in the traditional family Christmas food that I can eat, but then I can just eat a little more of the other dishes.... But it also cemented my decision to go travelling: this is the first Christmas after I got the MS-diet plan, so it will be hard avoiding all the dishes, that I can not longer eat but actually love. They fail to realise that some of the aspects of following a diet are hard, but you accept it because your body suddenly starts to function normally without the no-go food.

Despite my family I still love Christmas - my Christmas tree is decorated with ornaments brought home from my travels, my appartment will be decorated for Christmas, homemade cards are sent to friends and family (that is my way of getting back at their bad behavior because it always makes them feell guilty - they receive so many greetings from their friends and distant family but they never sent cards to them - on the other hand they complain of somebody suddenly stops sending them Christmas cards), the CD-player will play all the Christmas songs.

I am so fortunate that I have friends who share my joy about Christmas - they know my appartment is way too small, so I cant throw a Christmas party. But on the other hand they know that I would happily bring some homemade dishes if they ask me to when they have Christmas parties, so I feel like contributing to the Christmas cheer even though it wont be at my own place.
I love Christmas - just not with my family.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Reuse. Is that a better word than recycle...?

Nahhh... more people should live more by those words....

I made up a list on how I can contribute:

1. Preferably buy things in glass bottles rather than the plastic one - we have a special container for recycling glas.
2. Always bring a tote (either cutton or from recycled materials) when shopping groceries and other items - thus refusing the free plastic bag that usually come with the purchase = saving a lot of unessesary plastic bags
3. Replace old fashioned lightbulps with the new energy efficient ones - the old fashing lightbulps are going to be banned anyway
4. Recycle paper, cardboard, electrical equipment etc....
5. Turn of electrical appliances instead of using the standby function
6. Give clothes - that I have stopped using - to the charity second hand shops - provided of course that they are not torn etc.
7. When buying beverages in plastic bottles - make sure that they are part of the deposit system.

Maybe it is small steps - but we dont have unlimited ressources - and recycling also makes the need for bigger and bigger wastedumps smaller..

Everytime I fly on my own account, I always make sure that I pay to carbon offset my flights - the flights paid by my job, well it is their obligation to think of the environment. Actually the company do a lot of stuff for the environment .....

So did I do anything today from my list? Yep - my cooking today involved organic milk+butter+oliveoil+flour+apples - have engergy efficient lightbulps everywhere in my appartment, the electricity in my area comes from large windmills, I use my bicycle when I go to/from work.... and I could actually continue... normally I dont think about the environmently friendly things in my daily life, because now they are just integrated as normal parts of my day......

When I was a child, my parents did not have a lot of money - but I was not missing anything - and the huge vegetable garden provided for 80% of the vegetable that we consumed every year, and was taught how to use things and take care of them so they could last longer...

Back in 1990 my parents went to a conference about the environment - they allowed me to go with them, and that was my first encounter to the challenges we face today regarding the environment - I am not active in any movement but is just contributing with small steps in my everyday life..........

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Have you ever reached the point....

Where you feel like this?? Just empty in your head - no particular thoughts, nothing to say... just empty because you have already given all you had to give....

A little earlier you could feel and think - even though a numbness was gaining more and more control of your mind, thought, energy.... just everything...

This might have been the perfect start on the day, but suddenly everything just went their own way... out of your control ... eventhough you desperately tried to take charge and do something not wanting to accept that something is just happening, and you can not do anything about it......

During the summer I was on sickleave for little over a month due to stress - did not see it coming and suddenly I was just ruled "out" - I realised it myself and decided to act on it and immediately got all the support that I needed from some of my colleagues, the firm that I work for and my doctor.... It is not easy to admit, that you suffer from stress....

Sometimes the words "carpe diem" are the greatest tool I have when fighting the MS - at other times they are a curse, as I will stop at nothing to get things done... hence is why I did not realise the stress until it hit me...

Staying at home - with the feeling I was not contributing with anything.... hardest thing ever.... But at the same time I was confident that I could get better... I just neede to change my focus on things... soon I started reading book after book, worked on greating cards that my friends ordered from me, taking a walk everyday, playing with my camera (I took todays pics with one week interval)..... and suddenly I was back on track - different track though but still reaching the destination....

And it is nice when your colleagues mentioned that your spirit seems high, that you look great and full of energy, that they sometimes ask about the stress and how it could be fought with a good outcome.....

Today I actually feel like the first picture -but it is not due to stress. I have a muscle in my neck, that is causing a big-timeheadache (tension) .... and some people ask "Why did you not stay at home?" .. well the answer is - my head works fairly ok today eventough it hurts like ....!! But talking and laughing with my colleagues momentarily makes me forget all about the musclepain...

There is however a downside to this approach - getting home from work, and I wont be able to do anything tonight but sleep and relax - dont think I can concentrate on any bookreading, tv or anything. I experience this once in a while - but I am still lucky, some MS patients feel like this everyday and are therefore unable to have a job.....

Is the glass half empty or half full?? Well mine is half full!! :o)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Creativity that makes me speachless.....

No pics included in today's blog - after watching this clip sent to me via Facebook I wouldn't be able to include a proper picture.

I know that it is 8+ minutes, but watch is and don't forget to turn on the sound.. I am sure that you are gonna love it..... it's amazing

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday the 13th ... Good or Bad.... ????

Paraskevidekatriaphobia....the fear of Friday the 13th.

Ok I speak several languages - but just pronouncing that word.... uhu felt like my tongue went numb halfway through - tested my colleagues with the word, and it spread out to the other offices of the company and generated great laughs. What a cool way to start a weekend - generating laughs just by asking people to pronounce a word and then see their face when they learned the meaning of it :o)

I am born on the 13th (in February) so for me it is always something special....

My boss however didnt have good day - he is crawling on the walls as he doesnt know how to address us - he was confronted yesterday by some of my colleagues who insist that "enough is enough" - he is totally lacking the overview on whats happening around him and he has zero respect from his employee when it comes to his resposibilities as a manager.
Do I feel bad for him.... nah! not really - there have been so many signs, so many discussions etc. that should have made him realise a long time ago, that he is heading in the wrong direction......
My colleagues are the reason why I dont call in sick eventhough I from time to time perhaps should stay at home - have some me-time - and maybe let my body re-generate. They often ask me howcome I never call in sick and just stay in bed all day reading - they know that I have MS and are surprised that my energy level is often higher than theirs. But if I stay at home, I feel like I am letting the MS win over me - going to work makes me forget all about it..
That just make me think about the first entry of this blog - especially the comment "What the hell are you doing here - you are creative, you should pursue it!"
Blogging is still the newest project for me - going through some of my photos during the next time and maybe/hopefully change the layout a little bit.... But first priority must be finishing my x-mas cards - yep every single one that I send is homemade...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Is TimeTravel possible....???

I say it is... actually in some way. You just have to pick up a book. Books... I love being in a different world when I read- at least it feels like I am somewhere completely different.

When ever I go travelling it is usually by airplane - you will always find some passenger that is grumpy already before he/she boards the plane: "Travelling is such a waste of time!". Waste??!! Just pick up a good book, let it absorp you - and before you know it, you are at your destination... The past few years I have read a great number of books due to my many travels..

But books are also a relief... when I go to the hospital every 4-6 weeks to get the Tysabri-treatment for my MS, I always bring a book. Sometimes the time is spent talking to others diagnosed with MS, other times I just want to forget about the fact that MS is part of my life and the books help me drift into another world, where MS is not there... If you met me on the street you would never guess, that I have MS because I life a almost normal life. Almost as in I do have to pay attention to what I eat and I have to go to the hospital to get my medicine...

And did you know, that the UK have zero tax/vat on books, as they are considered educational ... howcome we don't have that??

I have too many books - at least according to my bookshelves that are screaming for more place - books that I have read, that is not a "keeper" I pass on to friends, who I think might have a good time reading that book - it is then theirs to keep or pass it on to others.

Recently the library was re-discovered - at least my world... When did I stop going to the library and check-out/borrow books? Now I have become a regular... If I hadn't, stacks of books would be everywhere in my department, and I am actually saving money (books are expensive where I live, so books are usually bought when I travel - which is why I have membership cards to Borders, Barnes&Noble, Books Etc., Waterstones etc...)

If you know a must-read book - share it!! Please :o)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Favourite building - does everybody have one...??

Everytime I am in New York, I always make sure that I have the time to visit the following places: the MET's Temple of Dendur, Empire State Building and.... to see the Chrysler Building (the picture is from March 2009).

I remember that my mum at a very early age asked me, which style I liked the most when it came to art - she was surprised that the words "Art deco" came out of my mouth without hesitation. She asked me if I did not mean cubism, as we have just seen an cubism exhibition with paintings by George Braque and Pablo Picasso - to this I simply answered "No Mum. Art deco like the Chrysler Building and Empire State Building. To this day, I still do not know how I knew that the buildings were Art Deco style. Back then I dreaded going to art exhibitions - I thought they were soo boring but later on I started appreciating art and surprised many of my own age about my knowledge about painters, styles etc.

I also remember a conversation with one of my best friends - we were talking about time travel: if we could go back in time or live in a different time, when would it be? For me it was always the 1920's which might be due to my facination of art deco.

Friday, November 6, 2009

The Calendar

Is my calendar a help or someting that rules over me??

Well for me it is a big help, but it has to be an old fashioned paper one - not one of those fancy electronic gadgets, that can contain your entire life like: calendar, phonebook, favourite music, favourite book, pictures of friends and famility etc...

No, it has to be paper - when no more can be written under a specific date, then I have enough plans/appointments that particular day.

I don't feel lonely eventhough I am single - all of my colleagues are married and most of them truly believe that I gotta feel lonely not being in a relationship. Yes I do a lot of stuff on my own: travel, watching the lastest movie at the cinema, going out for dinner etc..... but sometimes I also do all of the above with friends and family. Then why alone? Well if I want to go somewhere, why should I always wait for another person to be able to do it at the same time....

Becoming single was not my decision - that is a loooong story, but I do not want to sit at home night after night waiting for Mr. Right to suddenly knock at my door..... and later on regretting that I did do so many things. Yes sometimes I do miss the significant other in my life....

The MS diagnosis made me realise, that life is too short to not pursuing the interesting stuff.... I have signed up for a number of interesting lectures in various topics: photography, travel, wildlife preservation, books etc. to become more knowledge on these topics...

I have reserved 19 days in my calendar (X-mas, New Years and the beginning of the new year) to go travelling..... Have actually not booked anything yet and probably wont until two days before the vacation starts. Too many ideas regarding the destination and absolutely no clue on how to choose - so a pricebargain might be the determining factor when I have to make up my mind.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Counting Points

Somehow I wish it were frequent flyer points that I am counting.... but it is WeightWatcher points...

Or rather I should be counting points, but I don't. For me attending the WeithWatcher meetings is all about getting new ideas for healtier food and getting the support from others, that also want to loose some weight. Slowly more than 15 kgs have been lost during the past 1½ year - not a lot, but just a slow progress and by not counting points everyday but still being aware about what I put into my mouth/body makes me happy about the weight loss.

My BMI has been in the "normal" zone the past year, and I intend for it to stay there - loosing a few extra kgs would make the differense.... I have actually reached my mail goal regarding the size of pants - an can I achieve an additional weight loss I will consider it as a bonus.

When I was a child/teenager I was soo skinny - and soon called grasshopper, sticks-and-bones ets by other kids. My parents were summoned by the school nurse everytime they employed a new one in order to discuss my food habits. But my father has always been skinny to, so just by looking at him, hearing about the amount of food I actually consumed everyday combined with a high level of activity the nurses soon dropped all thoughts of me having anorexia.
I started gaining weight at the same time, that I was diagnosed with MS - my activity level did not drop... but earlier this year a doctor and a dietician explained that my body suddenly rejects some types of foods due to the MS, and instead of the body fighting calories it was fighting the rejected food..... a blodtest revealed which few things that I should leave out of my diet (actually nothing major - and all of them food items, that are normally considered healthy). I have yet to quit other bad habits, but so far the weight have dropped steadily ever since....

Sunday, November 1, 2009

What ever happened to.....??

What ever happened to the old fashioned letter? Ever since email made its way into everybodys life, letters have now been talked about as "the old art of writing letters"..

Hey... I am not old!!! And I still enjoy finding a letter in the mailbox from a good friend or a family member... now it is all about emails, mobile phones etc...

I am reading soo many emails during the workday, so I do not want to go home - turn on the computer in order to hear some news from my friends and family... some of them tease me, that I still prefer to write letters, but some of them actually likes getting letters in their mailbox (not the email mailbox).. others say, that we are busy doing stuff at different times, so a phonecall might be bad timing, hence they prefer to send an email - hey why not send a letter instead.

Since 1989 one of my best frinds and me have used letters as our primary communication method - for us it has just been natural to send news via postcards or letters instead of picking up the phone or sending an email. Only in rare occations we those the other means of communication, because we both like to sit down with a cup of tea and read a letter.

When I go travelling - a notepad, a pen and some evelopes always find their way into by bags: when not reading good books on the plane, I write letters to some of my friends letting them know, what has been going on in my life/mind lately.... and I still send postcards. If others do not have the time to send a postcard but are sending me a sms/mms instead - well do not bother because I do do not consider it to be personal...

X-mas greetings are very close to my heart - a couple of years ago I starting making all my x-mas cards myself. And now there is no way back, everybody I know will not settle for a bought card, that you can buy at any store - on the other hand, I know that not everybody are creative, so I appreciate getting a card from the stores etc... X-mas greetings via email where all the reciepients are disclosed - do not send one to me

This blog is just to put my thoughts into cyperspace as a reflection - I keep a journal, where I put similar stuff down but also includes my impressions of people that are somehow in my life. And I do have a web-album on GOOGLE's Picasa simply to share some moments from my travels with my best friends - not all pictures are posted there, that is not my intention, but I get soo many ideas from friends when they comment my pictures - usually I travel alone, but using the Picasa website actually enables me to share some memories in a totally different way, because I do not have to "hold lectures" when talking about my latest destination: they have already seen, what have impressed me the most and often others knows something about it and is more eager to start a conversations based on a picture.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


I went into the cinema to se "Julie & Julia" at noon and enjoyed 2 hours of Feel-Good-Time - this movie also caused the male audience to burst out with laughter, so it is not just a chick-flick.....

Julie Powell took up an incredible challenge, when she decided to cook more than one dish per day for a year, blogged about it and completed the challenge and found/got more opurtunities because of it. The recipes from Julia Child sounds yummi, but I know that my MS will not agree with me if I tried out a lot of the dishes...and still can not help wondering about the possibility to find a new "agreable" recipe, that I could make...hmmm....need find a copy of the book......

Sunday, October 18, 2009

More hot beverages please......

It is cold outside, and I have struggled with a cold the past 4 days - grrrr!! That time of the year - the body reacts stronger to weather changes since I was diagnosed with the MS.

But looking on the bright side of it - it is the season where hot beverages becomes "in" again - I have 10-15 different types of tea at home......

...and then there is Whittard's Mulled Wine - I rediscovered it last month in London and instantly bought 3 canisters, one of them already gone. In Canada I discovered Mulled Cranberry - only bought 1 canister which I regretted afterwards.

When I travel, I always look for tea - in this case instant tea drinks for the variety. The mind wanders back to the vacation, when one of these foreign teas is selected.

In the wrong place?

Ever get the feeling, that you are in the wrong place?

This has popped up in my mind more recently, maybe fuelled by a collegue's comment "What the hell are you doing here - you are creative, you should pursue it!"

Well... just maybe...

Need an income to pay my bills and especially the rent on my appartment... And I actually like my job.

The creative side of me was let out of hiding, when I got the MS diagnosis 7+ years ago - need to now, what I can do, if I am suddenly unable to work because of the MS. Now - it is one of the most un-stressing things that I know of, when things are a bit "too much". But then again - I manage a full time job and other activities, so the creativity is sort of a back-up-plan....