Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Ruby Tuesday


On this very last day of September 2008 I'm strangely, at the moment, all out of words - at least the more inspired ones - so I thought it would be a perfect excuse (if you need one, which you of course don't) to make a go at the weekly Ruby Tuesday-event. I like red, the mother of pink, details and photography so what's not to like about such a theme...?

It's got to be the first time for everything, hence this is my first Ruby Tuesday post and I've pondered what to post, I do have some red holiday favourites, but then there's autumn with its abundance of red nuances... And that typical Swedish red with white corners wooden house...

And red cats, and red flowers and red shops... I think I'll settle with Sweden in pretty autumnal shroud (the pretty tree above stands at *my* parking lot, so I can enjoy its seasonal changes everytime I'm on my way to the bus) - have a good Ruby Tuesday!


Red private residence with pink rose shrubs still in bloom in the suburbs of Stockholm

Monday, September 29, 2008

Castle Spotting - Eilean Donan, Scotland


This castle on its small island by the Kyle of Lochalsh isn't a favourite of mine due to its aesthetical merits - since frankly it is a a chunky heap of grey and dull looking fortress and not very pretty or fairytailish looking.


Nor is it a favourite because it's situated in a secret hideout remote from *civilisation*, residential areas and hoards of tourists - because it really, sadly isn't. Even though a plethora of picturesque pictures and tourist brochures might make it seem that way.


The reasons, my reasons, are the way its name has such an appealing, smooth ring to it, the way it swirls like silky icecream in the mouth. The way its backdrop, that works well in any season and in certain angles, is simply gorgeously scenic and how it all comes together and epitomize the quintessence of Scotland.


Hence I clearly heart Eilean Donan, so much in fact that I think about this castle practically every day. Not in an oddball, castle buff nerdy way, but every time I find myself with a lapful of furry apple of my heart Eulalia. This one portion of creamy delight has a surname that swirls like silky, smooth ice cream and is a distill of Scotland.

Scotland July 2008

For more information on the castle, its history and interesting details and quirks go to its website

Miranda & Jonas

For those days, times when one (me, you and everyone we know) feels like a round ball trying to fit in a square hole I take comfort in books. And no it's never those IMHO pathetic self-help new agey kind of books. It can however be a certain kind of harmless, easy read books that will just allow your mind to rest and dreams to float freely and without night labour.

It can also be a inspirational, imagination stirring and more than well written, all absorbing brick novel that takes my mind of the round-square scenario.

Then we have the borderline weird novel, well written, imagination stirring for sure, but somehow most of all in all its quirkiness oddly comforting. Comforting as in you realize that neither are you at all as figuratively round as you might feel at times nor as alone in that roundness.

And it's in this latter category of books one find both Miranda and Jonas, as in Miranda July - the maker of that wonderfully odd movie "You and Me and Everyone We Know" - and Swedish writer Jonas Gardell.

The latest book by Gardell I've finished was actually his third and first published in 1987, Präriehundarna (The Prairiedogs). But it has surely aged well, still sadly current. All the crackpots in this world who have gone crazy to endure life. Who solve their problems each in their own weird way, who join different associations and fellowships just so they won't feel lonely anymore.

It is pretty much as heart cleanchingly sad and pathetic as it sounds, and these are the people we see on the bus, the train, in our local supermarket, could be me, could be you, could be... Myself I do ponder a lot about the peculiar being called human and its (more than) odd behaviour at times - I've also been *blessed* with a few neighbourhood crackpots that keep me busy in the musing department those times I lack inputs from the world outside my own little block. Sadly I don't think I'd be able to compile those thoughts into as poignantly put words like (t)his. But I keep mulling.

July's book "No one belongs here more than you." is an award winning collection of 16 short stories, some infinitely more weird than the other, but all rather ambiguously captivating. Ingenious stories of different lengths about humans' oddities and outsiders possibly looking in. Of these 16 well written short stories, all easy to read though far from easy to always really grasp, I got six favourites. Mind boggingly quirky favourites that made me laugh, giggle and feeling so very, very sad. All enclosed in a befittingly shocking pink book cover (yes of course I went for the pink version). Not for the faint at heart.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sunday Loafing


Cat - Oh, this is The Way to spend a Sunday, me and my friend loafing on a blanket taking it easy, enjoying each other's company. Loveliness on a furry blanket.

Dog - How I wish she could go spend Sunday somewhere else. I know I'm The Dude Loaf Doggie Extraordinaire to be seen with, but really she is quite a nuisance. Hanging around, constantly wanting to get all cuddly and cosy, sharing this, sharing that, I don't want to spend Sunday on a blanket with this redhead, I want to spend blanket time all by my extraordinary self.


Cat - Oh look, great, I just knew human would run for the camera, we're so totally right here together Redhead and Loaf Doggie in perfect harmony, I think we look smashing, right Loafie?

Dog - Finally, human to rescue, remove this cat from my blanket. Please.


Cat - So, enough of this posing now, I want to continue the Sunday loafing, me and my bestest friend got loads of cuddly cosy hours left on this blanket. Away with you, human, leave us alone.

Dog - What, wait, hello, cat is still here, take her with you! Human is infinitely more stupid than I thought, clearly a serious case of chickens missing in the hen house. I'm just so very tired of this, me being used and abused by both cats and human, this household obviously suffers from a grand disillusion regarding who's in charge. What's next, no more squeaker toys?

Friday, September 26, 2008

WCB # 173 - Proudly Presents ~ William Wallace

kongro-no-47_kalmar_25-0018 williamca1

Since I'm at this moment a particulary proud breeder I thought it would be neat to with a photo and a few words share the reason for that. This beauty above is William Wallace, darlin' Waldemar's brother, the red classic tabby one I sure did write a bit here and there about during his 12 weeks of living under my roof. He was such a beautiful and promising and sweet tempered kitten.

I got an email from his owner today telling me he is on his way to become a first time father and that he also became champion a month ago (that was when the picture was taken by the talented Norweigan animal photographer kongro.no). Though in the cat show realm of things this champion-title detail is honestly not all that much to brag about, there are titles that are considerably more desirable if one falls into the category of competitive cat show goer...

The really important thing that is so worth bragging about, is the fact that he obviously still is a total sweetheart of a cat, adamantly sharing bed with his owners - being the last thing they see when they go to sleep and the first thing when they wake up, even if I myself stopped having cats in bed a very long time ago I love it when people enjoy this arrangement -, being a constantly purring and talking character, yes being pretty much everything I strive for as a breeder.

Just look at those eyes, the fur pattern, the thick tail, the pose, the broadness of nose, the stylish look and he is still only a wee one as far as British Shorthairs are concerned. Oh, I'm proud and pleased indeed.

The Kitsch Or Not Shop


Remember my major sweet tooth disappointment? If you don't you might as well click on that link and read before you continue down this post. I'll wait.

Now, residing in the same pretty building as that not-so-nice-anymore-café is a rather fun and quirky shop that specializes in *surprise* fun and quirky stuff from the 50ies, 60ies, 70ies. As well old photographs, books, all sorts of neat and pretty must-haves in contemporary design. Due to the fact that the suburb of Gustavsberg is an old archipelago dwelling lots of the things are of a certain maritime and archipelago feel.



Some of the things for sale in the shop do give me lots of nice and giggly flashbacks of my 70ies childhood. Much of doesn't appeal to my sense of style today - back then I didn't have much choice, with parents who loved orange, red and yellow, big flowery fabrics and all sorts of weird (and wonderful) patterns - but I really admire the way they've put together the goods for sale and the way they've created a colourful, appealing display of amusing flashbacks. And yes, some of the stuff I'd love to take home with me - or get/buy as gifts. It's a very happy vibes store. In a somewhat kitsch way.



Yes, they have quite the matching guest toilet too.
The shop doesn't have a website as far as I know, you'll find it down in the harbour, in the pretty Towerhouse (Tornhuset) at Odelbergsvägen 11, Gustavsberg, open Mon-Fri 10-17, weekends 11-17.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

September Glimpses From A Garbage Dump Point Of View


I will keep this post really short as far as words are concerned and just show some glimpses of a really lovely autumn walk, to a newish place in the neighbourhood which I hadn't visited until one glorious September day named Today. A new viewpoint with a modernistic waterfall and picnic area built on top of a former waste ground. Now that's what I call good and proper recycling!


Although please beware of dog, there is also whole lot of Malte going on in these pictures. Even if I hadn't been there before, he had and he was very thorough in his ways of showing that. Walking briskly uphill and downhill, taking a semi-bath in some, at close range, horrible looking water and yes, happily gulping it down too... Oh my and sigh, he is still his usual perky self though.


Sniffing the viewpoint, peeing, licking rocks - which obviously is The Thing to do when a loaf doggie and stupid humans refuse to share snack - showing teasing magpie who is in charge of viewpoint and all sorts of pretty darn important things loaf doggie extraordinaire style. Here are a few glimpses from our day at a garbage dump ~

There's even a really neat woodpile if you want to light a fire - for ambiance or barbecue that is - up at the viewpoint. Thank you municipality!
Oh, did I happen to mention I think I reside in a pretty awesome Stockholmian suburb that looks rather amazing dressed in autumn?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Little Box of Business

I got my much anticipated new MOO business cards the other day, some turned out great (I was especially pleased with all the black-white ones) others less so, a bit too dark or too reddish. It might have something to do with the colours of the photo being too dark for such a small picture, or perhaps it was the recycled paper which didn't work well for every photo.


The upside of this is that I really don't mind giving away some of the business cards, if they had all turned out great I just might have felt like keeping them all to myself. On the other hand I would like each card that I give away to be great, I'm slightly finicky that way. But I also realize - I'm not only finicky I'm rather insightful at times - most people don't care, just as long as the contact information is correct...

Missed a bit of personalizing on the back, but that's totally my, too hasty own fault, will not make that mistake next time. And I won't chose photos that are *darkish*. I also loved the little silly bingo card - very Innocent-y - and the way the wrapping read "quickly schedule a meeting, your new business cards have arrived!".

My old MOO MiniCards, adorable, fun and perfect for purchases and gifts, though perhaps a bit small and easily lost due to their size...

I'm not ashamed, well perhaps a teensy-weensy bit, to admit that I had the whole box of business cards, all 50 of them, in my handbag today. 'Cause you never know when you'll stumble over a business opportunity of a lifetime and I wouldn't have forgiven myself if I hadn't had the perfect and proper card with me... Never did strike gold that way though. So they are still all safe and sound in their box of business. Eagerly awaiting their first assignment - until then I hope they make the most of that bingo-card still stuck in box.


Goodmorning September Sunshine

vår 2006 018

I'm so pleased to see it looks a lot like this is going to be a mighty fine day here in Stockholm. Sunshine. Bliss. Have a good one!


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy 1 Year, Waldemar!


One year ago my little black panther Waldemar - the one who didn't want to move out, the one who was sweet enough to eat, the one who loved to host tea parties and ate way too much lenten bun, the one that stars on pendants and much more... - was a itty bitty one who entered this world the day after his siblings sporting a birth weight of something around 60 mere grams.

070926 001

Today, September 23 2008, when celebrating his official one year on earth, he is a smallish, lean, still sweet, playful boy with a seemingly endless amount of energy - not showing a lot of that phlegmatic British Shorthair character -, an energy amount that is only surpassed by his prediliction for purring.

Oh, did I mention that he also has a fondness for weird and wonderful postures?

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Little House On Skye

Isle of Skye

The first time we went to Skye was in the early 1990ies, that time around I did find the narrow one-car-at-a-time-roads quaint but also a bit tiresome and the vast, beautiful and relaxing landscape, overwhelmingly desolate giving me a distinct feeling of cabin fever.

The photo above I took back then - way before the age of DSLR, hence the scanned photo quality - with this little white house situated in the middle of nowhere by a loch on Skye truly symbolizes the place. I enlarged, framed and hanged the photo on my living room wall when I got back home. I look at it almost every day and over the years I've noticed that I no longer fear that desolate feeling as much, I even kind of long for it. Perhaps not all the time, but the idea of teleportation to that lonely, white, little house on Skye and back does rather often sound more than appealing.

The potential of getting life perspective, the endless views, the mind cleansing, breath-in-breath-out-relax room, the not having to deal with modern society and, honestly, stupid people, strike a certain alluring cord... Me, cats, dog, handbags, books, means of writing and communicate, invited guests only, now that do sound quite lovely.

Lovely is also the fact that many years later, the little house on Skye revisited, very little seem to have changed.


Sunday, September 21, 2008

By the Road - Hågelbyparken & Café Anna Giertz


In the suburb of Tumba, south of Stockholm, you'll find the utility Hågelbyparken (The Hågelby Park) a beautiful, lush Swedish folkpark (people's park) with conference facilities, petting zoo, youth hostel, open air dance floor, waterfall, garden, naturepaths for long or short walks etc.


The mansion (which now is a restaurant and hosts conferences) was built in the beginning of the 20th century by factory owner LM Ericsson - founder of the now internationally renowned Swedish company Ericsson - he also passed away there in 1926.


I remember attending some student ball at that mansion in my late teens, other than that the place is really way off, if you don't happen to live in the vicinity or have a car. Some months ago, we took a late summer drive there, had a walk in the lush garden and lunch at the pretty Café Anna Giertz, which serves light food, coffee and cakes.


The broccoli soup I went for wasn't at all what I had expected, but rather nice just the same and the homemade piece of sourdough bread was truly delicious. I bet the sandwiches are fab! The things for the sweet tooth were a bit sparse, but the little piece of sticky chocolate cake I had was all thumbs up.


The café, and surrounding garden, makes for a nice visit, although I wouldn't perhaps go out of my way to get there. One should also be very aware of the fact that it is a popular outing for the infamous pram mafia ie rowdy, screaming toddlers with parents who couldn't care less about consideration towards other visitors and fellow beings.


Café Anna Giertz is open all year round weekends 11-16, in summers every day. The food on offer is made with organic ingredients and that delicious bread is apparently also for sale. Now and then there are also inspirational theme weekends there, such as Tulip days, Cinnamon bun day, Halloween, Chocolate days, Apple days, Seven cookies day, Citrus days, Christmas fair and so forth. Oh yes, I saw that the café even hosts a knitting café every Sunday from Oct 5- Nov 16. Now doesn't that sound nice!


And who was Anna Giertz then? Well, that's the above mentioned LM Ericsson's daughter's name by marriage.
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