Thursday, April 23, 2015

World Book Day

As a part of my studies I have started an internship at the library here in Skien. With over 100.000 books there are a few systems to learn, but so far I am really enjoying it. Being surrounded by all those books makes me want to read them, but for right now I will have to focus on my required reading. Fortunately, I have had some fun children's books on that list, and since today is the World Book Day, I thought I could recommend one for you.

Nasevis is a book about noses in all shapes and sizes. The topic might seem narrow, but I must say I was surprised to learn about how different noses work for humans and various animals. This book can be read for young children, but I think anyone would enjoy the curious facts presented by the funny author Erna Osland. You can get the book at your local (Norwegian) library!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Restyle: How to make curtains longer

I found this blog post in the archives, never published, but written months ago. Luckily, it was not the kind of post that gets outdated, so here it is.

For our bedroom update we decided on a simple solution for our clothes storage. Instead of buying a new wardrobe, we used dressers and furniture I already had. But the results looked a little messy, so I thought it would be perfect to hang some curtains to hide everything, and maybe keep the dust at bay a little more.

We found some cheap curtains on sale, but forgot to check the length, and they ended up being about 15 cm too short. In addition, they had loop tape on the back, which wouldnt really work with the curtain rods. The solution was to add fabric hoops on the top, and also take the hem down some.

Cut strips of fabric twice the length you want + 6-10 cm for seam allowance. Fold lengthwise, sew down the middle and turn inside out. Press the seams in the middle.

Sew onto the top of the curtains. I placed one loop every 10 cm, using 10 loops for each curtain. Voilá, curtains that reach from the floor to the ceiling!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Curing my home: February update

I wrote about the January Cure in February, and here is an update on where I am at. The list is still not completed, but I am working on it. Lately I have tried to focus on my studies as well, which means less time for home projects (and blogging).

What I did in February: 

- Hanging a Peruvian blanket.  
This project has the most visual impact of all this cure. It was quite easy actually, but it took me a while to just get it on the wall.... Here is how to do it, and here are some more pictures of the hallway.

- Deep clean the bathroom. 
This was so nice to get done! I had already cleaned and cleared out of the cabinets earlier in the cure, but it still took me 4-5 hours to clean everything else, including the ceiling and walls, and even under the washer. It was hard work, but so worth it to have a squeaky clean bathroom.

- Get a lamp for the balcony.
We kind of did this. Its a temporary fix, and not a pretty lamp either, but now that the days are getting longer and brighter it might not happen until fall.

Still to be done: 

- Finish deleting digital files.
This is a very large task, but I am happy to have gotten rid of about 60 GB of duplicate pictures, music I don´t really like, unused programs and more. It was a great help to download DiskInventoryX, which showed me what was hiding on my computer. There are still a few thousand pictures to go through, so I am not quite done, but my computer seems a lot happier, and faster! I have also cleaned up a lot of my email folders, and also been better at deleting emails as I go, so that is an improvement.

-  Make a family picture gallery wall!
I have started by framing an old picture of my parents from when they were about 20. I know what I want, but need to choose pictures, get them printed and framed, so it certainly is a work in progress.

- Purge, clean and tidy the loft bedroom/craft space. Mike has done his part, but I have barely started. It sure is a daunting task.

- Organize the hallway closet. Hmmm... I will get to this one day, maybe when I pack away the winter coats and boots?

Sunday, March 1, 2015

How to hang a rug on the wall

If you have a rug, blanket, or other textile you would like to hang on a wall, here is one way of making that happen. You should not nail it directly to the wall, as it might rip from the strain, so though it sounds like a simple solution, it will not last. Here is how I hung my Peruvian blanket. 

Your rug/blanket
A piece of wood trip the same width as your textile
Sanding paper
Velcro the same width as your textile
2 eye hooks
Glue/nails and a hammer
Needle and thread
Fishing line or other rope

Step 1: 
If you have good glue, use it to attach the hooked end of the velcro to your trim. You can also use small nails like I did. Remember to sand your wood first! 

Step 2: Attach an eye-hook to each end of the wood trim.

Step 3: Sew the other end of your velcro to the textile. This is the most time consuming task. Just be patient, and use a good, sturdy needle.

Step 4: Attach the two pieces of velcro, and hang your rug on your wall! 

Friday, February 27, 2015

Studying the written word

I want to be a librarian. At least I think I do. So now I have taken my first steps towards actually becoming one. I have started studies in Library and Information Technology. It is an online course, and this semester I am taking a class in Perspectives on Literature in History. The next 1-2 years I will be taking classes, and do an internship at a library as well. I am very excited to learn new things, but a little nervous about all the papers I have to write.

People who know me will probably not be surprised hearing these news. Since I was a little girl I have always loved reading, and brought home stacks of books from the library from a very young age. My interest for literature is also evident here on the blog. I have a page for the books I read, and I write about books sometimes. Right now I am trying to focus on my required reading, but get distracted by other books a lot, so I don´t see the harm in asking if anyone has a good read to recommend right now?

In case you are interested in some librarian accessories: Get your own library scarf here. Plus, the magnet version of the book above can be found on etsy.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Peruvian entrance

We got a couple of Peruvian gifts when we got married, since we know people who live there or have travelled to visit recently. One is this happy lama-rug below, isn´t it fun? The other is a rug/blanket that was too nice for the floor. I decided to hang it on the wall, and will have a DIY post on how to do that later this week. Both of these South American textiles fit perfectly in our entrance area, and gives it a whole new vibe. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

52 Postcards for 2015

One of my goals for 2015 is to send a letter or postcard every week. Last year I sent lots of mail, most of it wedding related, and I miss putting stamps on envelopes and writing to my friends and family, so this little project will make sure I get it done. 

So far I have sent a few birthday cards, but there doesnt really have to be an occasion to send mail, right? I also hope to practice writing some actual letters. And now that I know how to make an envelope liner, I should do that more often as well. 

Would you like to receive mail from me? Just comment on this post with your address (unless you know I already have it) and you will get something pretty in your mailbox some time this year! Writing back is no requirement, but it would make me happy.

PS. If you prefer vintage letters (in Spanish) you can get yours from Etsy seller Blue Grizzle Paper.

Friday, February 6, 2015

January/February Cure

Apartment Therapy has a yearly tradition of a "Cure" for your home. This event happens in January, and the aim is to help you get a more functional and clean home. I have done it 1,5 times before, and thought it was time to try it again this year. There are two main points to the cure: cleaning and organizing.

There are areas that are easy and quick to clean in a small apartment, and others that are easy to forget, or simply ignore. This cure has helped get to those dreaded areas like inside the bathroom cabinet, the dusty bookshelf, and the top of the greasy ceiling fan. It feels great to know that everything is clean, not just the floor and surfaces.

Now that I am not living alone any longer, there is even less space for what we own. It is crucial to take inventory quite often and get rid of what we don´t need any longer. The best cure is of course to not let much new into the house, but it still happens. Especially with all the wonderful wedding gifts we have received (and love), I try to let them replace something instead of add it to our collections. "One item out for every item in" is a good rule I try to follow.

Cleaning and organizing can prove to be incredible improvement in themselves, but sometimes it takes a little extra for a space to go from blaah to great. I have not taken on projects like that this time around, though I would love to get a new color and handles on our kitchen cabinets. Hanging some new pictures might be the thing instead.

Accomplishments so far: 
- Deep cleaning the kitchen. Including getting new filters for the kitchen fan and installing them.
- Deep cleaning the living room. There was cobweb on the ceiling! With 5 meters from floor to ceiling it is not an easy feat to clean this room. Now I have vacuumed those exposed beams, and the dust on them is no longer exposed. For the first time, I also washed my curtains. Maybe I shouldnt have, because they are now almost 10 cm shorter!
- Deep cleaning the bedroom. Moved a lamp in here as well. We redid our bedroom this fall, so there was not much work that needed to be done. I go through my clothes twice a year when I switch seasonal items, so my closet is under control.
- Got rid of some things we don´t use, including kitchen items, books and more. These were given to friends or a second hand store, unless they were too worn out and thrown away.
- Digital decluttering. I have thousands and thousands of pictures and emails that I have never gone through. I started on this huge job, and have deleted hundreds of blurry and bad pictures already, but there is still a long way to go. Same with my inbox. It needs a serious detox.

I was sick for a few days in January, so I fell behind with some of the tasks, and have decided to spend February finishing up most of what is left.

To do in February: 
- Organize the hallway closet. This is the only real storage space we have, and it houses all our coats and shoes, plus tools, cleaning supplies and all kinds of odds and ends. It needs to be more functional for sure!
- Purge, clean and tidy the loft bedroom/craft space. Craft supplies, need I say more?
- Finish my project of hanging a Peruvian blanket. 
- Deep clean the bathroom. It should have been done a while ago, so no more delays now!
- Get a lamp for the balcony. So we can see the front door on dark winter nights.
- Start on a family picture gallery wall!
- Continue deleting digital files.

Anyone else doing this cure? Or interested in improving their home?
Here is the link to all the posts - it is never too late to start!


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