Wednesday, 7 January 2015

2014 // 2015

I've done two of these highlights/lowlights posts before for 2012 and 2013 and seeing as I only blogged a handful of times last year, why not start 2015 with the good intention of reviving this internet space with one of those posts talking about great things and not so great things that happened to me in 2014 (like successfully hula hooping with 7 hula hoops).
 photo 10661032_944702358892429_321190503_n_zpsfc57aac6.jpg So 2014. As Ronan Keating says "life is a rollercoaster you just gotta ride it", and this was one of those kind of years. 

Highlights include:
  • Landing my dream job. I work with clothes and internet.
  • Moving to Gothenburg.
  • Living solo yolo in an apartment and having free reign with decorating my own space.
  • Making one hell of a bunch of friends in Gothenburg who literally make life in this city.
  • Reaching local status in a bar. It's like there is always a space for me to sit and the girl running it has become one of my best friends. The bar is Holy Moly btw, they're tacos are ace.
  • Catsitting.
  • Bunnysitting.
  • Dogwalking. 
  • Taking part in my friend's video advent calendar.
  • That time I ran into someone from work while naked in the gym (I can laugh about it now).
  • When a lovely Irish girl invited me out for a burrito.
  • Office lolz. I work with some people I can proudly call my friends, who inspire me to think more about what font I use, the symmetry of things, to be less judgemental, to be full of pep and up for a laugh, to run more, to not let my emotions get the better of me and so much more. 
  • Interviewing one of Sweden's biggest musicians.
  • Getting to the point where I enjoy exercise (not in a smug way, more in a "oh this is kinda nice having a wee jog by the sea and good for my arse too").
  • Winning a dance contest second time round.
  • Winning a dance off in the name of family honour.
  • Meeting internet babes, like Cornelia, Bethany, Kamilla, Monique and Zoe, friends I want to hang out with IRL and did and now want to hang out with them forever.
  • So much yoga.
  • Did I mention my friends? Without you, I am nothing but a weirdo with too many compliments.
  • Friends visiting me for great weekends.
  • My first Swedish midsummer which was magical.
  • Raving in a forest and having one of those deep and meaningful conversations.
  • Texting Iso.
  • Accidental outfit coordination with friends on a weekly basis.
  • Balancing pints on my head.
  • A classy holiday in Croatia with Odhran Selfie King and Jess the Babe where all we drank was wine and Aperol Spritzes. 
  • Swimming in the sea. Or a lake. 
  • Prosecco Fridays. Because sometimes working late can be fun!
  • Casting a cat as part of my work for a photoshoot. Srsly. 
  • That Swedish sky
  • Categorising nearly everyone Megan and I know in Gothenburg with according to what cheese best matches their personality when challenged by her boyfriend that we could not maintain that conversation.
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Lowlights include: 
  • Breaking up with Copenhagen.
  • Leaving some of the best people I've ever met/known in Copenhagen.
  • Being unable to be as socially active as I used to be when travelling.
  • Which, as a direct result of this, lost contact with people I really love to hang out with.
  • Killing a cactus. 
  • Eternal fear of running into someone from work while naked in the gym.
  • Falling down the same hill twice. Damn you hill!
  • Losing the dance off (but I vowed to win).
  • When the person I lived with for a while didn't trust people so I couldn't invite friends over.
  • Personal emotional bullshit that comes out and is ugly and needs proper dealing with.
  • When a pint I unsuccessfully was balancing on my head knocked over as I got just too goddamn cocky and I spilled it all over a girl and ended up having to buy her a pint.
  • Living in a bubble where I am slowly losing touch with current affairs. 
  • Losing my ability to poach eggs.
  • Not being able to cycle up hills due to my inability to figure out the gears on my bike.
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2015, predictions:
  • Getting a dog/cat/bunny and naming it Burger
  • "Guest" staring in a reality tv show
  • Judging a dance off
  • Becoming completely self-actualised after resolving all my personal emotional bullshit while on a yoga retreat in Bali I went to alone. Cause solo yolo.
  • Have a cocktail named after me in my local bar. 
  • Use my longboard more than twice. 
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Cheers pals. ILY. 

Sunday, 2 November 2014

#EHCC (or not shopping for new things)

In spite of moving around a lot, I've acquired an insane amount of clothes and shoes. Yet, every morning I can not figure out what to wear. After a chat on Instagram with Stevie about this same dilemma, I joined in her pact to not buy new clothes with such reckless abandon. I've been sticking with it for a month and will keep it up (except the next work sample sale as girls' gotta get more prints) for another few months. 
Introducing #EHCC, aka Economical Holiday Chic Club. There's a couple of us (this babe and this babe as well as Stevie and I). We're not shopping and recycling our outfits while documenting it on Insta occasionally. Here's a couple of my recent old outfits-of-the-day that reminded me that I do not need another dress/shirt/jeans/shoes. 
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90s layered realness with a dress given to me by my friend Jess and floral DocMartens.
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Seriously intricately beaded jumper not done justice in this picture with some WoodWood sample sale treasure trousers.
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Loud print shirt dress. Bam.  
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Blue leopard print tshirt and practicing my Taylor Swift shake it out.   
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My favourite blue coat that is slowly getting destroyed after being stuck in the spokes of my bike on multiple occasions. 

I need to get a bit better with uploading more #OldOOTD pictures. In the meantime, I'm relishing knowing that this month I splurged on flight tickets for a spring time adventure. 

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Rituals

 photo 10706705_529852750494188_419196712_n_zps5f7cbcfb.jpg Aren't everyday life rituals lovely? I've moved apartment and after flat-sharing for a couple of years with some amazing people and some not so amazing ones, I've now started to live on my own. And oh-em-gee is it good. I've started to relish relaxed Friday nights rather than big ragers so when I wake up on Saturday, I can really enjoy my coffee while listening to Mary Ann Hobbs on 6music. I'll clean up the flat and make an elaborate breakfast and enjoy the process of pottering around in a space exclusively mine. That and batch cooking things for the week ahead. It's really satisfying knowing that I don't need to make a packed lunch after spending a bit more time making something great on the weekend that I can use all week. Slowly morphing into a grown up, one batch cooked curry and hangover-free Sunday at a time. 
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Another regular ritual I have is while cycling home, I'll be grumpy and tired after a full day and feel "UGH GOTHENBURG, YOU SUCK" and then I'll see something like this view which is right next to my flat and think "OK, you aren't so bad. But don't make me angry again, ya hear!". This happens on a weekly basis. My love affair with Scandi-land continues.
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I guess I got out of the habit of posting here. I'm more comfortable with the instant now?! 
But, after one heck of a busy summer and getting into a more comfortable solo apartment life, I've said I would put some time back into the internet. And I wrote this a month and a half ago and then never posted it. Round too. 

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Be my sweet potato

In the spirit of being more effective with my food in the fridge, here is a recipe for some super simple, super tasty and actually kind of healthy burritos. And an idea to use up all the leftovers you will inevitably have. 
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Roast up some sweet potatoes in a little bit of olive oil and salt, put the oven at a nice high heat to get those sweet potatoes nice and crispy.
Get some quinoa or bulgar wheat cooking (better than rice innit). 
While the sweet orange fleshy babes are roasting, make a super simple salsa. Fresh tomatoes, fresh chilli, shallot, lime juice, salt olive oil. I would have added fresh coriander and garlic if I had had some, but this packs a punch without them.  
Mash up some black beans, kidney beans, whatever kind of red/black bean you like. Add some lime juice, a pinch of cayenne pepper and paprika. Fry that up. 
Chop up some avo, grate some cheese if you want to, heat up some tortilla wraps. 
When all the separate parts are ready, assemble into a dreamy burrito. Add some hot sauce for extra heat. 
Bam. Sweet potato burritos. 

I'm always inspired by my IRL and internet friend Isabelle's food and her use of what is in her fridge. I'm always guilty of going to the supermarket to buy more crap that I will eventually need to compost. Not cool Goons. So I used all the left overs from my burrito fest to make another feast.
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I melted butter in a hot pan, added the pre-roasted sweet potato chunks and some fresh tomatoes into the pan. Squeeze some lime juice on top and some salt and paprika. 
Add in an egg. Or two. 
Fry it up. 
Add in the left-over beans and fry them too. 
Serve it with some greens, a tortilla wrap, some freshly chopped spring onion and hot sauce.

I kind of wish I could eat them all over again. 

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Instalife

I realised this morning I've been in Gothenburg for over three months now. Well, three months and a day. New cities, new jobs, new people are always a bit of an emotional roller coaster and I guess I'm in the midst of the upward climb from a dip. I've got furniture and a favourite bar now. Just need to actually feel at home, which is always easier said than done. In the meantime, I've been 'gramming to my hearts content. So I made some collages. 
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I'm like really into the colour blue lately. Not in a "oh I'm so blue lately woe is me way" of course. More in a "this colour is srsly helping my zen". Scandinavian skies are something else. 

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I got a longboard for a laugh. This picture was half staged, half a reality of me moving an inch forward. I'll get there eventually. At work, we installed an instagram studio. So that means cool special effects like hanging out with a fashun ghost. And I went "home" to Copenhagen and worked on that beer belly of mine. 

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So. Many. Prints. All. About. Prints. Nothing else needs to be said. 

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Most of the time when I eat out, I order dirty veggie burgers which aren't so grammable (not enough colour differences innit). However, here are some lovely different colour foods. You should definitely check out this page of breakfast sandwich options. I still dream of the mango mozzarella lime one. 
 photo collage1_zps3708bf29.jpg'
I'm really into flowers now. Comes with the territory of reaching a certain age maybe? Still, no point having flowers in conventional places now is there. So I put them on a longboard, next to my legs and on my head. Real cool Goons. 

As always, I'm available on Instagram, @fayoonao, for LOLZ, newbie woes chat and selfies. 

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Hey 17 year old me

I turned 27 this week. It was kind of a big deal for me as it is a bit of "scary" age for me. 17 year old Fiona thought that 27 was a really f*cking big deal, that I would have my house and have popped a kid or two out and would be settled in one place. That did not happen. But a lot of the stuff that make being a 17 year old extremely difficult (and 20, 21, 24...) finally makes a bit more sense. So, I old Fiona wrote young Fiona an email. 

Hey Fi,

So 17, bit crap eh? Plus you have a major horn for a boy who ends up being far more trouble than he is worth. But it works out, you actually meet a total cutie on a holiday in Paris and have a MaryKate and Ashley style trip. Seriously don't stress the Debs*, you look great and have a great story about who your date is. 

It's cool that you don't like sports too. That doesn't mean you aren't fit, you ace things like yoga, pilates, swimming, cycling and hula-hooping. Not to mention dancing, even though that leads to some injuries.  More real talk- body woes. It gets easier, you will feel more comfortable in your skin. And the fight between being skinny versus fit and strong gets easier. There are certain brands of jeans that will never fit you, but that is nothing to do with being gross or something. They aren't made for your shape. Simple. Namaste bitches. 
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Studying too, woah, over whelming much? You know what I've learned? Being a nerd and a dedicated student is actually worth it. You've got some mad learning skills. And that whole university worries? No sweat. Sure, the degree isn't the degree of choice and you end up trying to work in that field for a few years and turn your back on it, you came out with some really valuable skills. Lesson learned, you're adaptable. 

Also, Dad's right a lot of the time. You do have to work hard. You do need to knuckle down. And when he sprouts expressions Granny used say, she is generally right. Sometimes you do have to try and just keep the chin up.  However, he is wrong about somethings (but mostly not wrong, dad = almost genius) and that's ok. One think I've learned from all this growing up is sticking with your guns while working hard does pay off. Old Fiona quit her job in the health sector just over 2 years ago on a whim after booking a one way ticket. You get called nuts. Now, I'm doing grand, eating Swedish pastries doing a job I kind of actually really very much like. I get called brave. Nuts are for eating. 

Try not to drink so much coffee. You thought it was gross, now you are addicted. You are also addicted to social media and the internet but that's cool because it pays your bills. Instagram is your jam.
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Treat your family and friends right Fiona. They're the ones that help you so much in life, are there when you freak out over job applications, rejections, crazy nights out, bad outfit choices, good outfit choices, love life woes, hair woes, when those extremely embarrassing things that only girls ever worry about happening happen and so much more. It's a roller-coaster, you win some, you lose some, but you have some serious diamonds in your life. 

So dear 17 year old me, you get anxiety and panic but people will mop up your tears. Plus you are quite good at life, considering how difficult using a washing machine that is all in Swedish is. Keep not listening to people, keep dressing like a grown up toddler, keep making as many friends as possible. Don't stop dancing while listening to headphones, don't stop telling silly stories that end in a strange way,  don't stop "liking" life.
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It gets better and you ace life, most of the time. And when you don't, there is always some secret chocolate squirrelled away. It's ok that you don't have all your sh*t together the way you expected. Life is so different now from what it used to be. And you are doing a-ok. 

Love Fiona Goons 
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox

PS While it is great that you are really good at not eating all your Christmas selection box in the same day and hide most of it away, don't leave the chocolate too long as you have a habit of leaving delicious treats go past their expiration date. Not cool.

*Irish version of Debutante ball/Prom when you leave secondary school.

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