Sushi Date Night

Today while my husband and I scrambled through the internet hunting for dinner recipes to inspire our weekly meal planning, I finally decided to give up and call for a date night!

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Located in one of the more beautiful buildings in the neighborhood, Sushibar + Wine is my favorite spot to go enjoy a meal. While they do have multiple locations throughout the city, I am biased, and adore the Punavuori location.

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The inside is something between a pop-up gallery, local design shop, and Scandi interior heaven. Before you even get a bite to eat there is already something to gaze upon to feast your eyes.

For dinner, we had the three rolls from the Maki menu, Spicy Tuna, Shitaki Thai, and the new Cold Smoked Shake Maki roll. I have never had mushrooms in a sushi roll before but I was beyond impressed. No surprise though since I have been digging ‘shroom recipes for about a year now.

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Visits to Sushibar + Wine are far and few between, but every time I leave it is always with 100% satisfaction.  The vibe is perfect inside, even for a Monday night date. I hope to convince my husband of more dates in lieu of grocery shopping. Even if it is only for the summer, it is nice to enjoy the neighborhood and soak up all the fun.

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100 Years of Finland

December 6th, 2017 was the 100th anniversary of Finlands Independence. While I have been living here, this has been a huge celebration all year long. For those of you who may not know, here is my rendition of the celebration.

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Finns have a different mood towards December 6th, compared to other Independence Day traditions around the world. It is a solemn holiday here when citizens take time to remember those who lost their lives. Similar to Veterans Day in my home country.

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Fortunately, the centennial celebration brought a new mood. Blue and white themed the streets, shop windows, and light displays. Hundreds of thousands of people were out enjoying the day. As my third time in Finland for this holiday, it was a rather shocking detail. In years past people tend to keep to themselves. Stores close and the community stays rather quiet. I am hopeful that those traditions are in the past, and now the people have taken a new attitude to their achievement.

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Although hard times were faced so many years ago, I feel a positive celebration is what sustains progress. In my experience, celebrations bring communities together, verses mournings that tend to separate individuals. Among the fireworks, festive lights, and a whole year of pride leading up to this moment, Finland has a lot to be thankful for! As for me, I am thankful to be witness to something so special.

xx – nasty trash

Helsinki to Espoo

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Last Saturday, Helsinki Metro opened its brand new metro line extending from the city center into the large suburban area of Espoo. This has been a long-awaited moment for locals after a year of delays in construction. Commuters finally get to enjoy the new and beautiful underground line.

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In true Nordic fashion, the visual design did not go without deep consideration. As you can see from the abundance of content I have this week. there was a lot to look at. My husband and I began with a morning ride to the very last stop and checking out each station on the way back to the city center.

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Each metro station had its own unique appearance, and these images are simply my favorite moments captured. What I failed to capture, but thoroughly enjoyed, was the number of families, photographers, and interested locals out and about riding the new transportation.

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At one point I turned to my husband and said, “This is one of my top favorite days in Finland, ever!” As a suburban kid, metros, subway lines, and general urban transportation still fascinates me and ignites magic movement into any city. Although, Finns do not feel this same giddy sensation about local transportation. A normal commute, at rush hour, would usually consist of a full ride and not a single sound. Everyone tends to keep to themselves or maintain whispers of a conversation. No smiles, chit chat, or excessive expressions.

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In stark contrast to that stereotype, the metro grand opening was a happy affair. A family event none the less, and one that left smiles on faces of all ages. Crowds dressed in all orange to commemorate the moment. No groups appear in this particular collection of images, but it is still a memory I will cherish of the Finnish people. Knowing the citizens of Helsinki and Espoo do truly enjoy their community amenities, and it is something of a celebration to participate in this collective experience.

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I hope you enjoyed these images as much as I enjoyed making them. To any travelers, locals, or modern marvels, the Helsinki Metro is a must see! Not only will you get a break from the frequent cold and winter winds, but it is a unique way to explore a more intimate part of the city’s veins.

Free Up My Content

This week my inspiration came from a few different places. The images collected are based on an Instagram challenge called #FreeUpMyInsta. Whilst following Alexia Booker (@LostFoundKeep) and her daily vlogs all month long, she mentioned a new challenge developed by Allison Sadler. It is a beautiful concept designed to motivate others to appreciate our day to day lives, and worry less about a number of likes, quality of content, or curated images. The following images are my interpretation of the challenge.

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 1. Look Up // Lately, when you look up, grey skies surround the most unique colors of the year. This image is from my very own backyard. Although it may not seem like much, to me, this view changes and grows every day, just like me.

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2. Inspiration // I quickly captured this image whilst briskly walking by. I am currently victim to the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon, and vans are my repeated encounter. At some point in my life, I hope to live carefree in a van with the world as my backyard. But for now, I will continue to wander streets and fantasize about each van I see.

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3. Bloom // While October is not famous for any new foliage, the colors are something similar to a firework show. I also enjoy the woman walking in the image, and the bundle of golden maple leaves she has collected to take home. I only imagine she has a craft to create or a seasonal centerpiece to display in her kitchen.

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4. Simple Pleasures // Helsinki Trams. I love Helsinki Trams. The iconic yellow and green paint job is maybe one of my favorite things about the city. Only second to riding around enjoying the scenic streets and bayside sights pass by.

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5. Friday Fun // Confession time, this image was taken on Tuesday. During this period of my life, I have had to adjust my schedule, routines, and sense of purpose. But the most rewarding part of it all has been the Tuesday afternoons that feel like Fridays. The moments when I can have a spontaneous adventure with my husband, despite time, location, or finances. Life has many seasons, and I know this one will not last forever, but I am going to soak it all up while I still can.

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6. Explore // It was not clear how this image would turn out, but I am so pleased with the outcome. At 6ft tall I had to stretch my arms overhead to capture the top of this garden shed. It may not be your interpretation of exploration, but the way we view things can be a new adventure when given the chance to observe something from an alternative perspective. If anything, you will have no other choice except to explore the corners of your mind and wander your imagination.

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7. Favorite // This is my favorite picture this week. A quiet back street makes the perfect autumn postcard image. I feel as though the picture speaks for itself.

This challenge was a great way to think differently about my day to day surroundings. I would like to encourage the challenge to all of you. It does not have to result in a blog post or an Instagram, but instead, consider the world around you in these seven themes. I hope it provokes a sense of awe and contempt as you actively engage with your surroundings.

xx

Botanical Gardens

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As predicted, I have returned to the botanical gardens. This trip is more intimate than the inaugural, yet it was just as satisfying. A slow tram ride through the city carried me from my neighborhood to the garden entrance, and thus the adventure began.

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The content brings to light what I fail to experience in reality. The seasons are transitioning across the globe. Social media likes to remind us all when the change occurs, even if it is at the expense of our personal comfort. I enjoy seeing the leaves change color in Helsinki, the spring surf pictures from Cape Town, and the seasonal sunset shots people capture from around the world but take it too far at times and I begin to wonder why I’m not somewhere else.

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To respond to this global FOMO epidemic, the botanical gardens are my saving grace. On this particular day, I enjoyed the crisp autumn air, golden leafy textures, combined with dry cactus arrangements, humid rainforest foliage, and summer green aesthetic… all within a few meters from the other.

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I’m grateful for this little garden space. It is as if I can easily transport to a different scene, without a plane ticket, passport, or bikini wax, and experience something totally different than the moment before.

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Until next week,

xx – nasty trash