perjantai 6. joulukuuta 2013


Okay, spring is not here. Yet. Not even winter. If winter means freezing cold weather and tons of snow. But my mind is already set to spring. Some of you already know why, and for the ones who don't know yet let me tell you that I just booked a ticket to Tokyo! Also booked a tiny flat in Shinjuku! How exciting is that!?! 123 days till the trip :D

So let me warn you, I do get very annoyingly excited about super awesome stuff like this. I'm sure the never ending winter will bring me down a little, but from now on this will be my major topic on all of my post. Okay, I try not to drive you crazy. But no promises. ;)

Okay, so now I need to start saving money. I know how it's done in theory: you spend less than you get. And that mean no on-line shopping, no dolls or doll clothes, no fabrics, no letter sets, no washi tapes or glitter glues.
But what I don't know is how people do it. How can they be four months and two days without having any fun? I can't put my life "on ice" for that long and just wait for the trip. How can one be four months and two days without buying any dolls at all? How do you do it? What are you excited for?

My dolly friends here in Finland and I made a deal for not to buy any dolls for a month. I would tell you if my husband wasn't reading this, that I bought a doll on the last minute (okay, not really a minute, I had few hours left) of November. I had to. But I'm not telling you that, right. So it didn't really happen, right? But now I have FOUR months to take it easy. How am I supposed to do that?

So, I decided to allow myself to use the money Pinkkis makes to buy dolly stuff or more needed things for Pinkkis. Like Pinkkis can't spend more than it makes. And if there's any left, then that money is for me to spend on dollies. Sounds like a good idea? I like it a lot, but not really sure how to stick to it. I thought by telling it to as many people as possible would make it more difficult for me to break my "promise". So I'm telling you now; keep an eye on me!

I still have quite good stock of fabrics, so no need to buy more. Other than the furry material for the sleepsacks, but I just ordered tons of that. And zippers, too. So I should be okay for quite a while. And when I get to Japan, I'll buy enough cute fabrics to cover a small country! To be well stocked for the super exciting Blythecon EU 2014! Did I tell you I got chosen to be one of the vendors!

I have a Xmas Fair coming, and I'm not done sewing yet so I better get working! There will be one new sleepsack added at the store today, a very cute fireman for all the little dollies who need to be protected.


ps. Sorry for all the typos, misspellings, weird/wrong words I might've used, I didn't ask my hubby to proofread  it :) So this is the "real" me writing ;)

lauantai 23. marraskuuta 2013

10 facts about me

There was this fact-thing going on on Facebook. I wasn't tagged (I'm not that popular - LOL!!) but since one of my favorite things about my life is about being me, I wanted to share some facts about me. I tried to check if I had written about that (about me!) earlier, but lost interest around April so I'm not really sure if it's there or not. But even if it is, I'm sure the facts would be at least slightly different this time. So I hope you don't mind in case I'm repeating myself.

These are not in any particular order.

1. My middle name is Kirsikka, which means Cherry in English. It wasn't given to me as a baby by my parents, I actually (officially) added it myself when I was old enough to do so. Reason: I was/am able to knot a cherry stem in my mouth.
2. It takes me at least an hour to eat my breakfast. It's gotten really bad. The first 30 minutes I don't even eat anything. I just can't get myself started. I don't have this "problem" if I'm having bread for breakfast. Only with raw porridge.
3. Often in the morning, when I'm not like really woken up, but neither in sleep anymore I wonder where I am. And I'm trying to figure out which way I am in the bed, without opening my eyes. Like honestly sometimes I think I'm still at my childhood home.
4. My pinky nail is twice as long as my other nails. I left it long after cutting all others short. It'm my secret tool. And actually it's quite damn useful. And it's getting so long I sometimes secretly admire its bird-like clawness.
5. Ever since the first Sherlock Holmes movie it's been the movie series I've anticipated the most. Like some people wait for sequels for Hobbits, others Harry Potter. I wait for Sherlock Holmes. It wasn't even my fave movie, but uh.. .dunno.
6. I often think what kind of idea/image people would get from me if I died now and they would go through my stuff.
7. I've created for myself a "thing" that makes it impossible to answer phone calls from unknown numbers...
8. There are five female pheasants in my back yard right now.
9. Often when I see my hubby heading to the bathroom I get the urge to rush in before him. I have no idea why.
10. I get a bit too excited and go to extremes a bit too often. Sometimes I wish I could be the person who stays in the middle of the road, but then again - I'v e tried that (w/the help of medication) and it wasn't any fun. Or at least it wasn't as fun as I thought it would be. So I rather go from side to side.


Some new dolls:
The one on the left is new. Red Delicious. Doesn't have a name yet. Has to be something juicy and moist.

Momoko! Bought her from a friend. She doesn't have  name yet. The doll. Friend has a name.
Not here yet, but paid and on her way :) Amazingly cute, eh?

torstai 31. lokakuuta 2013

Where the magic happens

I know I'm kind of an underdog here, with my incredibly cluttered and colorful style. If you even can call that a style. I know that the incredibly beautiful houses that are presented in magazines are all very minimalistic, very white, very clean, airy and very much not like me at all. Even the Etsy frontpage is always very sterile (except for today! At least in Europe it had some touch of color in it! Woohoo!) and I never like it. And I know for sure I'd never ever get my treasuries on it. Mine are always very colorful and messy. :)

 I have tried to declutter, and I've done pretty darn well at it! I've gotten rid of a lot of stuff, but then at some point it starts to get very difficult. For a long time I got rid of one item per day, until recently. Now it's more like one item per week. The question I ask myself is: Would I buy this again? Like if I didn't already have it, would I buy it from the store. It's funny how often the answer is no. But not anymore. My craft supplies are kind of sacred. I mean I don't need to justify them - I use them to make my crafts and even if I have something I haven't used for a year (another thing to ask yourself, if you haven't used it within a year, you should get rid of it) I still might need it eventually. And I almost always do! I love that feeling, when I use up something I've had for years and never thought I'd end up using. 

But what about the silly stuff that I "collect"? What about all the little trinkets and toys that I just can't
stop buying. The stuff that fill my closets and most of all - my wall space. Occasionally I go through some of them and decide I'll only keep the really cool ones, but still I have hundreds of small items in numerous wall display shelves, mostly in my craft room, but some on the stairway and in my bedroom as well. And in a way they make the already wonky house look even more like a toystore. And not necessary in a good way. 

Sometimes I dream of a elegant white house, with white airy drapes, just few pieces of white furnitures,
tranquility, the sound of whales singing (from a CD), spotless walls, spotless everything. And then I realise I'd get an allergic reaction from all that space and would shiver from the lack of colors. Guess what! No matter how unfashionable it might be, how uncool, how against Etsy's policies -- I like my silly, non-matching colors, broken and dirty toys (actually only few of them are broken or dirty, it just sounds better if I say it like that ;) and my cluttered craft room. My desk (and the whole room when I get really good/bad) works as a indicator for how creative I feel: When I'm just working on something less exciting the desk stays in pretty good shape, but when I'm feeling super creative and super amazing, the desk and the whole room, from floors to the walls, is really cluttered and filled with piles of fabric and beads and papers and what not. And that is great! Sometimes it gets so bad I have actual layers of projects on my desk. And then I usually end up making some horrible things, like cutting through something I really shouldn't be cutting etc.

At the moment I'm working on Blythe Sleepsacks. They are so much fun to make! They take a lot of time, but I'm learning how to work faster. Like just few days ago I started gluing the ends of a string I use for zipper pulls, to make it sturdier for the beads. It used to take me forever to get the small beads on the string, but not anymore! And for this project I was able to use fleece that I had tons of just laying around, left from some previous project I didn't feel like finishing... Last Saturday I had to buy more, though. I've made over 30 sacks already, so it was predictable that I would run out of it. 

The sleepsacks get the room only mildly messy, so I've managed to keep it pretty clean. So I felt comfortable enough to take pictures. And I actually cleaned it up after that. And made some more mess with fabric spray paints, but that's another story.

I also like to organize, it's just that it won't stay that way for long :)

Oh! Before I go, I'd like to say that no matter how messy and cluttered it might seem, I still know pretty well where everything is. 

 “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?”Albert Einstein.


torstai 26. syyskuuta 2013

Effin' cold out there and in here!

I love living in Finland. I love all the little things that make this country so unique. You know, being grumpy nine months of the year, not looking strange people in the eye, avoiding neighbours and so on. I like that. But I fucking hate the cold weather!!! The only thing good is the fact that it kills pests and other stuff so we don't need to use that much chemicals on farming. But that's it. Everything else - just go away, please!! I don't even like burning candles!

I hate winter clothes, I hate their stuffiness, bulkiness, I don't even like the fluffyness that much, nor the earth toned colors.

I hate the dry winter air. It makes my skin super dry and when it's dry it gets scratched so easily. For six months I look like I've been fighting with a cat every day. I also feel super bad for my daughter, whose skin is even worse than mine. Hers gets so dry it hurts to even look at it. Poor thing. Also the annoying dry air will make everything so freaking static! And when you are into dolls with plastic hair...static is not something you want! The flyaway hair makes me crazy!!

I don't like the lack of Finnish products on the veggie isle at the grocery store. Other than root veggies, everything seems to be imported. It's quite a challenge to eat locally when all you have is carrots, beets, potatoes and cabbage.

Walking the dogs becomes a challenge. First you need to get dressed warm enough to be able to go outside. And that takes time. During that time the dogs are whining and crying non-stop by the door, and that's something that drives me crazy, too! Once you get outside you need to be really careful not to slip on the icy ground, which is nearly impossible, with two big dogs. You're also supposed to keep your fingers and toes wiggling at all times, so they wouldn't freeze. And with the clumsy mittens you always end up getting dog poop on you, goddammit!

Riding my bike is no longer fun. My bike freezes and my hubby doesn't know how to fix it (note from hubby: does know how to fix it, but because Raisa treats her bike like a wheelbarrow and leaves it in the rain all year, the cables freeze, so whatever). So I have to take it inside five hours prior using it and make it sure I won't be using it outside too long, or it'll freeze again and I have to walk it home! Happened so many times last year, I rode it to school and walked it back. Grrr! Also dressing up for a long bike ride is not easy! First 20 minutes you are going to be freezing, but after that you wish you wore nothing but a t-shirt and shorts. And hat, thick gloves and warm winter boots.

But the worst part is inside our house. It's cold. Starting from yesterday we'll be cold until at the end of April. The house is so old and leaky no matter how much we heat it the heat escapes almost as fast. Okay, it's not that bad, but bad anyways.

And you can't even take nice pictures of the dolls outside, because it's too cold! You just run out there, click, click and then have to rush back in with frozen fingers.

This pic is still funny, the story behind it is :) Polly just moved to F-land from sunny Australia and is very pissed.

So, today is the second freezing cold day. How many are left? Brrrrrrr! I don't want to think about it!

Stay warm! I know five people who are keeping at least their dollies warm with Pinkkis sleepsacks ;) First sack sale on Etsy last night! Feels so great! So, what are you waiting for,  go ahead! Make my day, buy a tote for your dolly from my shop! :D I guess I should go make more, sincere there is just one in the shop at the moment.


keskiviikko 25. syyskuuta 2013

Dolls, dolls, dolls

Hey you!

I'd like to share some of my dolly news with you! Little by little I'm getting the dream dolls I've always (or at least for the last six months) wanted, and some that I didn't even know I wanted but once I saw them knew they were meant for me. I told you about the Tiina custom I managed to get, right? My Holy Grail girl. There was one on Ebay this week and it sold for over 1,300 euros!!! I'm not going to say what I think about that...but if you have that kind of money to spend on a doll then why not. I didn't pay anywhere near that much for my doll.

I don't know if I can ever have a doll family I of which I can say "This is it, no more for me," but honestly as soon as one special little dolly arrives from Canada, I think I might just settle down and enjoy the ones I already have. So, there's still one more...Okay, there's still Goldie which I've been looking for for a long time now (lost her twice already). So there's still room for one dark haired drinker (there's this amazing photographer on Flickr who takes the funniest pictures of Goldie, and he always makes her a drinker). But at the moment I'm not even actively looking for her. I need to get my financial stuff organized and under control first. So, maybe next year...

I have been re-doing the dollhouse once again. I was never really satisfied with the penthouse bedroom, the room that two dolls (sisters, Alex and Nana, MUG and OKM) shared. It was somehow way too busy for the eye, too crowded. Too something. So something had to be done. And while I was working on that I also redid the rooftop balcony, which came out great!! The bedroom's nice, too. I also rearranged the house's occupants, like who lives where. Feel free to laugh but it was really hard to decide to let Bambi, my first doll, move into the "Glass Palace" and let the new girl from Canada take over her apartment. Also Bunny had to move. :( So Alex could move and the "little girls" Nana and Phoenix (Tiina custom) could share a room.

All this has to be very interesting to you...sorry. It's just that that's all the happy things that's going on in my life. Okay, not true. But there has just been so much stress over the studies and I've been sick and it's sucks to be sick if you're unemployed. But I'm better now and the school stress is over for now, have been having some huge tests and I'm so close to being done with it all, but there's still stuff to do and I still don't have a clue about what I'd like to do.

A few nights ago we were watching a movie and in it a man got one of those cool-looking silver trailers and traveled around the States, and I asked my hubby if that's something we could do after the kids move on their own. To sell the house and just travel. I'd like that :) Hahah! Who wouldn't? What if we could both work for a year or two and then do it again, just over and over again. Work and then quit and go see the world. I dunno, maybe we'd get bored with that too. I just don't like this stability of everything. I want something *more*, some action. And yet I don't want things to change.

Now you see me!
I've been sewing again. This time I have something really interesting I'm working on! A Protective Blythe Tote!! We had a small Blythe meet with few of my dolly friends and sold one of my creations to each participants. :D Yay! And they all really liked the idea. Now I'm working on more and I should be posting them on Etsy today or tomorrow! Wohoo!!

Oh! Did you hear that? That was the sound of my sewing machine calling for me. Gotta go!

Enjoy the autumn weather!!

Now you don't!
Me, my dolls and Julia from at our meet
Just wanted to share this with you -- Pinkkis products packed and ready to be shipped :) Cute, eh?
Noriko, AZ

What you looking at? (Phoenix)

Glass Palace

lauantai 17. elokuuta 2013

Golden wedding and bunch of other stuff

Hello! It's me, your lazy blogger! Oh, well! I'm not really that lazy at all. I write a lot on my Finnish blog, but this second-language blog is totally different from that. This morning (I'm usually at my smartest in the mornings, before I get out of bed) I probably came up with the reason why I don't blog more often. It's because of the language. :) No kidding?! Because it's not my native language I tend to make grammar errors (a lot) and some typos. Which is kind of funny, since my Finnish blog is full of typos and maybe even bad grammar. But I couldn't care less. (Not really true, but I like to say that.) And for some reason when I write in English these matter a lot. Everybody who reads my blog in Finnish knows I know the language inside and out, but typos and bad grammar in English might make you believe my skills in English are poor. And I don't want that! And my husband is, for some reason, very sensitive to this. He's a writer and an editor, so proper English is very important to him. That's why he wants my blog to be a free-of-bad-language-zone. Uh... where was I? Husband... Ryan Gosling... no, husband! So, hubby wants to edit my blog posts, to make it more enjoyable for you guys. But that makes me feel like I need his approval for my posts. And I'm not a writer. I blog about silly stuff with my silly "voice." How could he approve that?

So there was the reason for these far apart posts. I even lost a reader during the gap. :(

I didn't wear these shoes to the wedding! just to get there!
Anyways, to the golden wedding! We were invited to a friend's wedding party. It was held after the ceremony, I guess there wasn't any ceremony, just the "thing" with a few witnesses and then few days later the party. I'm not sure if you got the idea of me being very bad with clothes, proper dress code and all that. If you did, you were correct. I'm bad. I like colorful stuff mixed with more colorful stuff. That's my thing. :) So if an event has a dress code it means big problems for me. What is proper way to dress for a fancy-pants wedding? I was supposed to buy a dress from the States, but then I didn't want to do it. I thought of renting one here in Finland. I didn't have to do that either since I accidently found a dress I liked a lot while shopping for school clothes for my daughter. So yes, I found my fancy dress in the kids section... :) I showed the dress to a sales clerk and asked her if that would be a proper thing to wear at a wedding party. I also said that people don't expect that much from me. She said it would be okay.

Later on I showed the dress to a friend of mine and she said: "Black? To a wedding?" Oh no! Was there a rule to not to a wear black to a wedding? Yikes! So after that I started feeling uncomfortable about my dress. And I knew for sure that at least most people attending to the party would be wearing perfect outfits. So I was really selfconcious, and that effected my mood a lot. Bummer!

Anyways I got my hair and make up done by an ex-professional and I didn't feel that bad after that. But the closer we got to the restaurant where the wedding was held the more worried I got. I was sure we'd ruin the party with our silly clothes. But once we got there all worries were wiped away! The bride was so amazingly beautiful with her golden Valentino dress and huge ring that that was all that people were able to look at! Just stunning! Once I got my eyes off of the beautiful couple I notice that at least four other women were wearing black! Yay! And I even got some compliments on my dress and hair! Superb!

It was super fancy wedding, with some of the most amazing foods. And yes, for us and two other people there was an amazingly yummy five course vegan menu. We ate for hours. Which was so fun, I never ever eat for hours. I'm always too eager to get to the next meal, so it usually takes 30 minutes at the most. But since it wasn't up to us we got to enjoy for so long!

This wasn't the traditional Finnish wedding. The common way to get married in Finland would be church with lots of old people and the silly white dress, then some rented party venue with not so great food, maybe even paper plates, and tons of booze. Somebody would end up insulting the bride's parents, puking all over, passing out and so on... and it would take the whole day and cost enormous amounts of money. I'm sure this couple used a lot of money, too. But they did it with style. :) In my close ring of friends we've had three weddings, I think. First was 15 years ago (wow!), and then three years ago was mine, and now this. They've all been so different, but somehow they've all had something in common. They've all looked just like us. They have been clearly OUR weddings. Oh boy, maybe I shouldn't even tell you this, but our budget was 5 k's and I spent half of it on my MLP sleeve!! And yet we managed to get the most amazing wedding ever. I guess we just are that cheap. ;)

I honestly don't understand why to put tons and tons of money on one day. If the day doesn't look like you. If it's a copy of all the weddings before. Well, what ever makes you happy :) At least you get nice pictures. :)

Last night we went to watch Kick-ass 2. It was fun, but not special. Lot of funny violence. Which is fun as long as it's not, you know, aggressive violence. As long as it's a kind of a joke it's okay. And also Dexter kind of bloody pulp violence is okay, too. I really can't tell what's the difference with good and bad violence, I mean funny and disgusting, but there definatley is something. I missed part of the movie because my mind was set on this amazing doll that has my name on it. The second Takara Blythe ever made! Mondarian. I've been drooling over All gold in one/Goldie, but with no luck -- I've lost her twice already. But then this beauty suddenly appeared on Dolly Adoption and like a siren she was calling my name and since the price was incredible there was nothing I could've done differently. She now belongs to me :) (sorry mister hubbyman). She's a true beauty. It takes a while to get adjusted to BL beauty. A year ago I didn't understand people who were obsessed over these silly looking dolls. I only liked the "pretty" ones. RBL's. I didn't even like Kenners at all! Now I do :) I have one BL, Kozy Kape and she's one of the most amazing dolls there is. When hubby saw it he said: What an ugly doll. Poor Polly! Fortunately I was covering her ears so she didn't hear what papa said.

Polly (BL) on the right hand corner)
Other doll stuff: I've been sewing a lot! Some nice and some awful and even some great clothes. But what matters the most: I've been sewing! And even some more complicated pieces, not just the same old stuff. I'm so proud of me. So far I've liked it a lot. And I've saved a lot of money, too! Maybe I wouldn't have paid for some of the things, but some of them definately. And I'm getting better!! Yay for me! Yay for sewing! Yay for dolls!

Enough! Gotta sew some more! Before it's time to save the animals again! Tomorrow is yet another Restaurant Day and Animalia (the organization I volunteer for) is having Animal Friendly Cafe. I've promised to help to day with the cooking and baking and tomorrow the whole day with doing the dishes and frying veggie burgers. Yay for animals!



maanantai 15. heinäkuuta 2013

Let's talk about dolls!

Nothing much going on in the real life -- so I'll talk you about dolls. :)

Margo Unique Girl, my first "dream girl"
I had a few-months break from them, but now I'm back, or they are. With a venegeance! The Blythe company just released a new translucent "Dream Girl" with pink hair, and I managed to get one! I still need to wait a couple weeks before she's here, but the toughest part is now done: getting through all of the masses that wanted to get her at the exact same time. She was sold out in less than an hour, I think. That's what the translucent skin does. I really think they are the most beautiful dolls in the world! And they are the ones that will cost fortunes within a year. During my last break they released "Margo Unique Girl," and I didn't see her until months later, but I was completely sold -- she was pure magic! And the prices were three to four times higher than the original price. I managed to get one anyways. And now she's valued even higher than that. :)

not my pic! Blythe body on right, the body I ordered 2nd from left
So now I'm back into dolls, but I do have a small problem: my dollhouse is done and I don't want to start making clothes for them, so I don't really know what to do with them! For some reason (I think it's because of the new Flickr) I don't feel like taking pics of them that much either. So what to do with my precious dolls?

As a resolution I bought a Pure Neemo body for my "youngest" girl. At least now taking pictures is a lot more fun because I can pose her the way Blythe body never could. So there's a lot more variety on that! Too bad the body doesn't hold the heave head that well.

Nana's new body
I've also ordered few new clothes for my girls, and am waiting for a trade I made with amazing Eurotrash. I sent her, with a help of a travelling friend, a bunch of pouches for nappies and such, two vegan cook books, and a pouch that was made specially for her. I can't remember if it said Eurotrash on one side, but the other side said: One crafty bitch, and it had embroidered craft-related fabric patches on it. And I've heard that she liked everything and is now looking for materials to make me something special! Sooooo exciting!! Can't wait!!

I've taken some pics of the dollhouse, the way it is right now. I like to look at the old pictures of it and compare it to what it is now. Hopefully one day Ill be able to compare today's (last week's actually) pictures to something I'll take in the future, meaning hopefully there's still more to do with the house. Hubby and I are planning (okay, I'm planning and doing my best to get him on board) to make a smaller, more portable dollhouse. Just two rooms, attic and a porch. If you've seen Camp Ground cottages on Martha's Vineyard, you know what I'm talking about. I'm thinking of making The Pink House in 1:6 scale. :) Quite ambitious!
Hello! I can wave my hand!

A week ago we rode our bikes to the city, and I'm planning to do it again today. Last week we went to a huge fleamarket, but I didn't get that much. Nothing really worth mentioning, except for my two new Tamagotchis! At first I was: Yay!!! And now I'm: blah! They are so much work! I gave one of them to my daughter, but she left it here, on purpose when she left for her father's. And now I'm trying to keep them alive and happy.

Today I'm hoping to go not to the fleamarket butto the city to get some scrapbook supplies. I'm really running out! I'm so bummed that I wasn't into scrapbooking when we were at the States a month ago. I could've bought so much more interesting stuff. Compared to the States we have pretty much nothing here. Or we do have plenty, but it's just so boring. I don't know why I don't order it online. We have a few really great online stores, but I never seem to order from them. And they are located so far away that I can't really go there. The only time I can buy from them is at scrapbook fairs. And that's like once or twice  a year. Woohoo.

Look! How relaxed!
So yes, I'm also into scrapbooking again. I'm even scrapping at home, which I haven't done in years! I'm almost done with the year 2012, which means soon I can do fresh pictures!! Yay!
Salli, first Tama
AAAAAA, pink tama! (I didn't name him!)

Lempi, daughters tama

Kat working at the Super Sweet Store
 xoxo, Raisa
Bambi baking something yummy

Nuppu with nail clippers
I just love to park a small car!

Nuppy with a reflection

sunnuntai 23. kesäkuuta 2013

Update -- Shopping!

Hello all!

I'm still alive! Sorry for the long break!

We went to Martha's Vineyard for a week and then to Amsterdam for a day, and now we're back home. I loved being away, but I also loved coming back! Our trip was very relaxing and it did good for all of us. By us I mean the whole family, kids included.

My mom took care of the animals, which was really nice of her. We stayed at my mother-in-law's, and visited all of the relatives who live on the island. And some of my hubby's friends. And of course a lot of other places as well.

Since I don't have any pictures yet I don't feel like telling about the island, but I'll tell you about something almost as interesting. And that is: shopping!

The island itself doesn't have great opportunities for shopping, so we had to take the ferry to get to the mainland. That took about one hour. Then we'd have to drive for an hour or so, depending on the destination, to get to the shops. And then more driving to get to other shops. And then the whole thing again to get to home. Quite a lot of transportation.

Our first destination was Target. We all had gift cards, so it was kind of obvious choice. I didn't like it that much, but the kids enjoyed it. I still managed to buy a lot of stuff, junk food mostly. I don't think American candy is that good, but quite many of it is vegan. They rarely use natural coloring, which they do in Finland, so the use of insect-based colors is very rare. And for some reason they don't use that much gelatin, either. Dunno why.

Few items from yard sales, most from heaven.
I don't know where my fellow travelers went after that, but I know where I went: to heaven. In America they call heaven "Michaels." I think it's funny. I'd name it Angelina or Angelica. I had an hour, and $175 worth of gift cards to spend. The amount of time was good, but I had to use some cash as well. :) It was a lot of fun! I couldn't find everything on my list, but I got it even by buying a lot of stuff that wasn't on my list. Among all of the things I bought was a Smash Book for my daughter. I really didn't know what it was. I had actually heard the word the day before we left, and didn't know what the people were talking about then. But it looked very interesting. I also bought some Smash stuff for myself, but not the book. Just some embellishments for my scrapbook.

After landing from heaven, some of us went to Paper Store. It wasn't as fun as it sounded. Mostly crap and cards. But I do have to admit the Americans sure make the best cards. Or they make the Chinese to make the best cards.

Only the robot fabric is organic.
And that brings me to something that was really bothering me while walking down the isles of heaven. The unfairness of all of the items there. Everything, and I mean everything, was made in China. Or somewhere like that, where the rules and regulations, human rights and all that are not so important. 

Some time ago we had scrapbook papers made from (partially?) recycled materials. Some cotton fabrics are organic and from abroad (meaning not from Finland). You can order fleece and synthetic felt made from recycled plastic. But that's about it. No fair trade items, no paying attention to the excess packaging (quite a lot of craft items are way too over packaged!), no more than just a couple supplies made from recycled materials. Dear manufactures! We demand Fair Trade craft supplies! We demand items made from recycled materials! We demand more organic fabric!

After Paper Store we went back home, tired but happy!

The second shopping trip happend a few days later. We headed towards Whole Foods. Before that we stopped at another Michaels -- I had to get my own Smash Book! They gave me fifteen minutes, and went somewhere else. As this was a new store I couldn't find the Smash items, so I was forced to walk down all the aisles. And of course I found a lot more to buy. Eventually I found the thing I went there for, plus some more things I didn't know I needed before seeing them. I spent around a hundred dollars. Expensive Smash Book... even though I got it 40% off, thanks to a coupon I had. I love cupons.

Food/kitchen related stuff
Whole Foods was another kind of heaven. A lot more nicer, actually. Gentler. Tastier. And mostly organic, Fair Trade and vegan friendly as well. :) And expensive!! I had a gift card for there as well. I spent that and a lot more. We ate super yummy lunch there too. The cashier was the first not super friendly person I met in the States.

From Whole Foods to Trader Joe's, because we had cards for there, too! Mine was worth $30, and I couldn't use it all. Whole foods was too much! Finally hubby, who wasn't able to use his card either, combined ours and bought some cashew nuts.
More food/kitchen related stuff

On the island we went to all of the possible thrift stores and yard sales there were. Dind't find any treasures, but some nice stuff anyways. Something useful and something fun. I also spent quite a lot of time at the local grocery store. I love grocery stores! I could skip all clothing and cosmetics and jewelry stores, just take me to a grocery store and I'm happy. :) I found vegan chicken and beef stock powder. Very interesting! I also found freezer paper. For crafts. Don't know how to use it yet, but I have a book saying I will need it. :)

I liked doing some shopping on the island as well. Mostly just to support the locals. I heard their rent is really high and a lot of stores go out of business, so I felt bad for them. But the selection was a lot smaller, a lot more tourist oriented and everything was quite expensive. But I did my best. :) For example I bought these fancy cookies for the dogs.

Here's the other than food or craft related items I bought.

I've already put 99.9% of everything where it belongs. I think that's one of my favorite things to do. Unless it gets too overwhelming. With candy and snacks it almost got out of hand, and now I have yummy stuff everywhere. Which is not good since I'm determinate to lose 6 pounds.

That's about it! Take care!!