Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Shoe problems.

For few days now I've been searching shoes for the wedding. I've checked Polish, German, Finnish, American and British internet shops, and also Ebay and even Amazon. So far I did not have luck. It might be though that I'm juuust a little bit too demanding. As you already know I wanted our theme colour to be mint, and so I've developed an obsession of mint green shoes. Right now as it is/was kinda trendy color, it should not be so difficult. But I still could not find shoes that would be the perfect shade. And on the computer screen it is pretty hard to evaluate whether the colour is the correct one. They should also have some kind of glitter, diamonds, other decoration that would make them special.

What I could not decide yet is if I want heels or no heels. The rational side of me says no heels - I'm not used to wearing high-heels, and in the garden they would definetely not be the easiest choice. So ballerinas? Or some pretty sandals? It seems to be hard to find fancy enough flats. Now that I have my princess-dress the shoes should be "on the same level". My first idea of simple Greek-style sandals of course won't fit anymore. As I feel that the dress is very feminine, heels would feel appropriate and also more "festive" than ballerinas that I use almost every day. But with heels I don't mean moderate wedding shoe heels, but really high ones. I don't usually like heels that are less than 8 cm. :D

I was also thinking that maybe I would be able to make some DYI decorations if I would find simple ballerinas/high-heels in the right color.
I found unbelievably pretty ballerinas with handmade decorations from Etsy...

Golden Vines Bridal Ballet Flats Wedding Shoes - Any Size - Pick your own shoe color and crystal color
...but unfortunately they are waaaay out of my budget. 

These Tamaris pumps would be nice with some decoration, and they even have reasonable heels. But I'm not completely convinced of the color (too light?)...

Or maybe I will do something "crazy" and, ah so trendy and go with these :D
Anyway, I'm still waiting for the right ones, so if you have any ideas where to look, tell me! :)
And I know, I have time...

Monday, August 26, 2013

The dress.

Do you remember my first inspiration post? There I was dreaming about a dress that would be kinda simple, sleek, Greek goddess like. But along the way ~6 weeks :D I started to like more and more "classic" style. And with this I mean a bit bigger dress, with slim upper part and quite big skirt.

On Saturday we went to see this wedding outlet that I'd heard of. It's about 10 kilometers from Wroclaw, in a small village. I heard that you can buy dresses there in half price from the ones in the boutiques in city. So of course I had to see it.

I was being sceptic though, because all the dresses were suppose to be the same size, and I did not think that it would fit. So we went there with not too high hopes. The outlet was very far from my image of outlets - it was a small building on the sales person's backyard. I was also expecting there to be a buzzle on Saturday afternoon. But no, luckily we were the only ones.

After showing some pictures of dresses I liked the sales lady brought me some for trying. She was saying right in the beginning that she does not have these Greek-style delicate, elegant dresses. But I still wanted to try something. Apparently the lady thought that the dresses in the shop would be too big for me, so she brought some special ones from the house. But like often happens, I'm not so petite as people think :D so the first dresses were too tight. As we had "a small" language barrier me not speaking Polish and the woman knowing two words of English and a bit of German I could not really tell what I liked in the dresses and what not. Well, actually I did not really like the first dresses...

Then I saw one dress hanging there, ready to be tried. And immediately I knew I would like it. So I tried it and it was perfect despite the fact that I should wear 12cm heels that it wouldn't be too long. It fit very well, thanks to the corset on the back love it! It was beautiful! All my fears of looking like a 5 year old stuck in her mother's dress flew out from the window. That was it, I had to have it even it was nothing like the ones I was first thinking. The only thing I was thinking was that "I was not supposed to buy the dress on the first attempt!" but then I thought why not. Who says I shouldn't. So I did. And I'm so happy. It's gorgeous. ;)


There will be no pictures, because I don't want to reveal such a big thing already now. And the few pictures taken quickly in the shop, wouldn't do justice to the dress. But if you want you can try to guess which one it is, it's on the outlet webpage at least for now. ;)

Sunday, August 25, 2013

We have a band!

We've been looking for a band for the wedding some weeks now. First my fiance was asking from his work contacts if someone knows some nice band. But unfortunately all of them were either already booked (!) or way out of our budget.

After that I found maaany bands from internet, and sent maaany messages for them. The first one who answered was Tweenings. Their price was affortable and we like their sound. They also have a lot of English songs in their repertuar. So we did not need to think much further. After that I received many answers but we had already made the decision.

Last Thursday we met the vocalist; she was very nice, and seemed like a professional. We have actually heard them playing, they sometimes play in the city center. But at that time we did not know who they are.

I'm sure they will help us to create perfect party :)

Ps. They even agreed to play one song in German, but unfortunately no Finnish that will be guests responsibility then ;)

Here & here you can listen some songs.

Thursday, August 22, 2013


I love surprises I love lots of things nowdays. And I've found the perfect man on my side who loves to suprise me. <3 Sometimes rarely I feel a bit guilty because I'm not very good in organizing surprises, or at least I suck in keeping any secrets :P

Yesterday I got two, both of them including Berlin. It's a bit funny how before last year I never visited Berlin and now in 1,5 years I've been there so often that I lost count. I really like Berlin, there's food, interesting events, interesting looking people, interesting buidings... I could imagine living there someday which is likely to happen, but for some reason I still don't have a clear picture of the city. Maybe it's because I was always trusting the navigation skills of my travel guide, following him blindly, or maybe it's because Berlin does not have a clear city center. Anyway, this makes it more interesting to go again and again. It seems like going to different city every time as we always have a bit different reason to go and we are staying in different places.

So what about the surprices then? First one was that we will go to Berlin for a weekend that is not yet decided, who wants to join? and sleep in Scubes in the middle of Berlin. Not the common hotel/hostel accomodation, is it? Will be interesting for sure. I wonder if I will then know how the aquarium fish feel like. 

The other surprise was that my fiance bought us tickets for Saturday in Berlin Festival! And I will get to see Ellie Goulding finally! We were thinking about this festival already earlier this summer, but for some reason buried the idea. Cannot remember why... But now I'm so happyhappy and cannot wait to go! Also the fiance has some entertainment for himslef as Paul Kalkbrenner will be there too. ;)

Maybe I can make my Berlin picture clearer with these two upcoming trips. And if not that's ok too.

Ellie Goulding - Burn

Travelling means food.

I love travelling and travel planning, and I'm so glad that I've found a man by my side who loves it as much. We like to do all kinds of trips, and quite often we travel to see some event. But one thing is always a big part of the trip - food.

Usually we are checking in advance what kind of interesting restaurants and other food related things like markets, the destination has. I've had few bad experiences along the way, usually these happen the first evening when you're super-tired and mega-hungry and just want to go to the first restaurant on the tourist path. WRONG. Of course planning ahead does not always save you from mistakes and sometimes it's good to be spontaneous, but in general it does make the travelling more enjoyable. And if you've made your research, you will less likely pay rip-off price from frozen food warmed in microwave.

I am almost always first thinking about the food and food culture when choosing a destination. Any destination can be exciting if there is good food! Events, sightseeing and that stuff comes later then. Only beach and sea and sun can go ahead of food. :P

But were not fine dine kind of foodies, more like great value for your money kind. Which does not necessarily mean eat-as-much-as-you-can buffet, but more the good quality of the food. Sometimes I do dream about going to upscale places I was brainwashed in the university but then the voice of sanity tells me otherwise.

Thanks to the university (I have bachelor degree in Culinary Management), the people I met there and my "career" as a waitress, I might sometimes be a bit difficult company when having dinner. I do eat everything I mean EVERYTHING so that's not it. I've just become much more critical when it come to the quality of food and service. I really hate paying for bad food or service. In the other hand I believe that I can appreciate more the hard work the restaurant staff is doing in order to serve us a nice dinner, or lunch, or breakfast.

I thought maybe someone would be interest if I would list few restaurant that we really liked, so here we go..

Sztrass Burger, Wroclaw, our new favourite, is perfect for lazy Sundays. They have huge and tasty burgers, made from fresh ingredients. And very affortable prices.

Sometimes I still dream about the northern-Asian food of Gaijin, Helsinki. It's a bit pricy, but for sure worth of the money.

In Gingerboy, Düsseldorf we had some excellent home-made noodles and delicious duck. I could go back just because of this restaurant.

Brunch in Rigoletto, Dortmund makes me wait for the next football trip there. ;) They have everything I wish to have on perfect brunch. With that price they should.

Also brunch in Hotel Barcelo Raval, Barcelona was very cool. You can enjoy cocktails in the roof terrace with view of BCN, and they also have DJ.

Honest Burger, London had very delicious burgers and fries in cute, home-like atmosphere.

Transit, Berlin has affortable, delicious Asian food. They have a lot of quite small portions so you have a chance to try more.

I'm was not a huge fan of Schnitzel before, but in Marjellchen, Berlin I saw it's true soul. DELICIOUS. In addition the owner knows every language yes, even Finnish, and goes from table to another just to chat with the customers. Like it or not. ;)

U Babci Maliny, Krakow has the best pierogies I've eaten. Service is non-existent, but food is cheap.

I was positively surprised about El Rodizio, Dresden as it was the first restaurant we found when we were super-tired and mega-hungry in Dresden few weeks ago. Very nice salads with fresh seafood. Don't know about their steaks though...

We had very tasty tapas in La Bombeta, Barcelona. I heard it was once "an insider" place, but when we visited there was a big group of Asians and other non-Spanish people. I hope the owners can still keep it as authentic.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The list is ready!

Aaaand here are the finalists:
  • San Francisco
  • Los Angeles
  • Boston
  • Moscow
  • Kampala
  • Addis Ababa
  • Chengdu
  • Guangzhou
  • Beijing
  • Singapore
  • Taipei
  • Lima
  • Santiago de Chile
  • Kuala Lumpur
  • Tokyo
  • Bangkok
  • Jakarta
As you might notice we purposely left out Europe well, I guess Moscow is technically Europe.
There's no turning back now.

What's your favourite? ;)

Friday, August 16, 2013


Last week we noticed a post of one of our friends - her photographer friend was coming to Wroclaw, and she was looking for clients. I had been thinking about taking some professional pictures already before as it's kinda affortable here.

So here the possibility was delivered right in front of our noses! Last Sunday we had the session in the Japanese garden. Weather was perfect and the photographer - oh, she is just lovely. Got us relaxed in front of the camera and had nice ideas. I don't have much where to compare to, but she was very good. I wish we could have her in our wedding too, but she lives in London...

As she is now on holiday, we were supposed to get the pictures in a month. But yesterday she suprised us by sending us one to relief the anxiety.

Picture by Ewa Slusarek

Can't wait to see the rest! :)

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Decorating ideas.

After some serious future planning, I wanted to fall back to the wonderful world of weddings which is actually also future planning. So I was searching for some inspiration for table decorations.

As far as we now know, here the catering can also handle the table decorations, so it might be that instead of these do-it-yourself ideas we will have a ready "package" included in the catering price. But I hope we will still have few words to say about the style of the decorations.

For table numbers I was thinking something like this, but we will probably have max. 6 tables so I'm not sure if numbers will be needed.
What comes to the decorations on the tables, I would prefer something simple, self-made looking and cute. And colours would of course be something like light pink, white, beige and then some spots of mint green. Like this:
 I don't know much about flowers but while searching for inspiration I have noticed that I really like peonies and roses. I was also thinking about making somekind of "pom-poms" myself. I found quite clear instructions here, in Finnish.
I also tried to find nice idea for place cards, you know those ones with people's names in them, but so far I did not find anything very exciting. Maybe this?
Who has can-not-go-wrong macaron recipe? ;)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Truckloads of heavy thoughts.

Now that being diplomat's spouse is becoming more and more reality than one nice fairytale, I've spent time thinking about my future. How exiting, adventorous and unexpected it will be! But also uncertain, scary and even lonely. Recently I've every now and then tried remaind myself to maintain positive attitude. So I'm trying to stay positive, and think how amazing opportunity has been given to me to explore different cultures and countries, but still have some of the "home-country-security-feeling" that I would not have if I would  have to travel all by myself. I have been given an opportunity to experience different kinds of lifestyles and jobs. For someone very career-oriented this could be a nightmare; short-time jobs from different industries is not usually the easiest way to management position. But for someone like me who was already before lost searching her own place in the work field this is a perfect opportunity. And if there's no possibility to work, which might be the case in our future "home"countries, I can try volunteering, I can study or I can housewife. :D

But 'cos I'm a hard-core realistic, side effect of growing up in Finland, I have also thought about the not-so-ideal sides of the life as diplomat's (future) wife. Right now, here in our safe collective EU where I get to work, I have nothing to worry about. I am insured by the company where I'm working, and they pay my pension (will be interesting how I'll get that when I'm 65 75). But in our next destination, which will most likely be outside Europe, it might be difficult for me to get a job. In some coutries I will not even have permit to work. For some people (me) this might sound totally ok, and I already got a taste of housewife's life when I moved here, but in the long-run there is few things that might become issues. First thing is the career - in our world where experience is everything, it might not be the best asset on the labor market to have a CV full of gaps, or CV with 4 years of housewifing every now and then. Second thing is the insurance - who will cover my doctor's visits if I get run over by tuk-tuk in Thailand. Third thing is the pension - with what money will I live when I'm old and frail well, that's the question for all of us right now, eh?. Of course insurance and pension issues can be fixed with loads of money, but my cash flow will be most likely rather limited. And anyway, why I should pay much more than fellow EU citizens for those things that should be our privilege.

So unfortunately it seems that this kind of dream life has it's downsides too.

For some time now I was childishly thinking that I must be the only one "struggling" with these things. How wrong was I? Of course with thousends of diplomats, only from Europe, there is also thousands of spouses moving around the world with them. And apparently in some countries 50% of the spouses are from some other country than the diplomat. So I'm definetely not alone. Just today I found an interesting web page of European Union Foreign Affaires Spouses Partners Associations, more friendly EUFASA. There I found some answers to my questions, which unfortunately led to more questions. But at least I know I'm not alone. ;)

Ps. I'm terribly sorry about such long (and boring?) text, just had to get it out from my system.
Pps. There will probably be more this coming in future :P

And finally one positive thought, so it would not be so heavy:

Sunday, August 11, 2013

"Pay attention to where you are going because without meaning you might get nowhere."*

About three weeks have gone since we got the list. You remember the list I told about before. The list from which we are supposed to choose the cities where we would like to live the next three or four years. Now we have 1,5 more weeks time to decide. Over four weeks is quite a lot of time for decision making, and we have not been actively thinking about it all the time. First week of course went by searching all kind of information from Internet I can't even imagine how would we make any decisions without! but after some time something called "informaatioähky" took over my brains and I concentrated more on the wedding planning. Now I've had long enough break to get interested about our future again...
What I have noticed is that it is not that simple. I thought "yeah, easily there is at least 10 places where we wanna go". Well, yeah there sure is, and a lot more in the world. But it turned out to be a bit more complicated. First of all, we have to choose at least 12 places. Second, the places are categorized as A, B and C places, from A being easy-to-adapt to C being not-the-places-I-always-dreamt-of. Places like South-Sudan or Afghanistan. But also a bit more "friendly" places like Kuwait, Moscow or Addis Ababa. What I did not know, was that we have choose 4 places from each category. And with the C places it has been a bit trickier. Some of them I could not even move with my fiance. We've tried to look them from all different angles, safety being the most important.

When we first got the list there was some places I was sure I would wanna move. Then I did a bit research and these places turned out to be not so good ideas. Mostly because of some serious safety issues. Places like Venezuela, Mexico and Trinidad & Tobago. Our research has had opposite results too. We have been seriously thinking about Kazakhstan, Moscow and Kuwait, which were not on top of my mind.

From the A and B lists it is much easier to find four places. But yesterday I started to think that some of the A places might be difficult, because they are very expensive. And what if I don't get a job right away. Will we have enough money to live in such places like Tokyo, Singapore or San Francisco?
We will dedicate next weekend for the final decision making, but already now our C list seems quite clear. Kampala, Addis Ababa, Chengdu, Kuwait and Moscow are current choices, but we will most likely drop one out to reduce the chance to get C place. We will still have to look a bit more in the A and B places, but my favourites now without too much of research would be Taipei, Kanton, San Francisco, Tokyo if it would not be so damn expensive, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Jakarta. Quite many favourites, I hope we will get one of them. But I'm constantly trying to remind myself to be open to anything. Because it might as well be that we will move to Uganda. And I need to be prepared.

*Quote by A.A. Milne

Monday, August 5, 2013

New theme colour love.

What kind of woman would be a woman who wouldn't change her mind? None-existent.

I have found a new love for the colour theme of the wedding already approved by the fiance ;).
The old inspiration was slightly different.

May I present - Noora <3 MINT

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Noora's travel guide: Dresden

Last weekend we met my parents in Dresden what happened to the sunday dinners in Espoo? :P They were spending their holiday in Prague, and asked if we could meet somewhere near. Everything is "so close" here, that it's easy and not too expensive to drive somewhere for a weekend. :) I've been in Prague already twice, and I have to say that so far it did not impress me much. Too much tourists and negative things related to tourism. So we decided to check some other destinations where it would be easy for us and my parents to come.

So we picked Dresden.

First time I was in Dresden was last year when we visited "the-world-famous" Christmas markets. Obviously it was a bit different now in summer.

The first things I noticed was that it was HOT and rather quiet. We were so lucky to have the super-heat-wave for two days of our sightseeing. Maybe that was the reason why the city seemed so quiet. Who would willingly do sightseeing in 37 degrees? :P

Dresden suprised me already on the first time. I've never really heard about Dresden before, I guess it's not very popular destination for Finnish tourists. I wonder why? They have everything that Prague has, except less tourists and less drunken British people. And less cheating. They have gorgeus old buildings, a river (ok maybe not the most beautiful one), traditional restaurants, cheap beer for Finnish people at least...

But most amazing are the buildings; the entire city center was destroyed in the II World War, and they managed to rebuilt it so nicely. Me and my parents were wondering why Finland was not rebuilt like it was before. Now we have country full of apartment buildings from 60's. Not pretty.

We did not really check the night life, but we ate well. On Saturday we went to Mongolian Bar; a restaurant I found in advance from internet. It is a combination of buffet and a la carte. Different menues included soup, sushi, buffet and dessert. In the buffet they had fresh vegetables, seafood, fish, meat and noodles, and the chefs prepared this with the sauce you chose. Nice idea. But definetely not fast-food.

Breakfast we had in our hotel, Motel One, which we've been sleeping in other cities too. I like their concept; affordable prices, small but shiny-new rooms, good location and nice breakfast buffet.

On Sunday after some walking and refreshing in a fountain :D we needed to get some lunch. With our heads melted by the sun, we managed to find a Mexican-Brazilian restaurant near our hotel. I was a bit sceptic about the restaurant, but I was proofed wrong. We all order salads as it was too hot to eat a steak. And the salads were excellent! :) But apparently the prices were scary to some people as we saw several groups leaving right after they had a look on the menu.

So final conclusion is that Dresden is worth visiting and I would go there again. Maybe next time we will hit the clubs. ;)

Keep calm, it's just wedding...

I'm a little bit worried that I will soon became what they call "bridezilla".

[Formed from blending of the words bride and Godzilla (Japanese movie monster). Used to describe a woman whose behavior becomes outrageously bad in the course of planning for her wedding.

I'm already stressing about the wedding. I've tried to convince myself that I should not stress at least not so early and that the planning is supposed to be fun, but...

Lately I've noticed (well it's nothing new) that I'm quite unpatient person. I want everything to happen right now :D Ok, I don't need us to get married tomorrow, I would just want everything to be ready NOW. I have already planned the dress, hair, make-up, invitations, decoration of the wedding place, the schedule... at least I have not tried to plan the menu yet. Not that I wouldn't like to. :P

Now that I think, I have not actually made anything yet, just planned in my head. And this is what probably causes the stress. I have so many plans, but I'm afraid that they cannot be fulfilled. Well, I guess they will not come true if I won't do something about it, right? :D

My new motto should be "do more, think less".

I have been reading some wedding blogs, not so many, but enough to get stressed about them. That's probably not the point, and originally I started reading them just to get some ideas. But now I've started to compare and I want better, bigger, cooler, more beautiful than they have. 

Sounds healthy, eh?

I've tried to ask the opinion of my handsome half, but still I have feeling that I'm telling what kind of colours we will have, what will be the schedule, what kind of cake I want, how the food should be, how will the invitations look like...But he is saying that he enjoys the planning with me, always such a gentleman :D

I'm not sure if this is normal in such early stage of planning? Please tell me it's normal?! How can i stop the monster growing inside me?! :D