Sunday, 27 September 2009

Morning exercise and a praying mantis

Hello. I don’t really have anything much to write but I think it’s a shame that the blog has been inactive lately (and that I have been the most inactive blog-participator). So here are a couple of pictures and updates. I actually really wanted to tell you about last Friday because it was such a nice day. I have experienced some problems lately in regard to the structuring of my daily life. I only have one lecture a week and I’ve thus had a tendency to sleep a bit more that necessary and I’ve had a general lack of routine in my life. But my new project is morning exercise! My friend Maja invited me to join her for 9 a.m. yoga on Fridays, and I have become a great fan of this. So last Friday I went to yoga, where I also met Marte (our 0-year form MUWCI) and Kristian (who is Chris’ friend who Sofie has met a few times). After yoga Maja and I sat in the sauna, followed by a visit to a cosy cafĂ©. After that I studied a bit in the library and then I had to go to a meeting to plan a photo exhibition about Western-Sahara that we are putting up next week (this is in relation SAIH which is the organisation I am part of: Norwegian Students and Academics International Assistance Fund; After the meeting I went home and Christopher and I cleaned the whole apartment. I even tidied my bathroom cupboard, which has been subject to chaos. I made a little box, which i decorated with nice pictures of my good friends. When the house-cleaning project was over we made homemade pizza and watched a documentary about marihuana. I went to bed at 11 to get up for work at six (my “truck”-driving job). The whole day was filled with structure and efficiency and I’m still so happy about this day.

The other picture shows our new pet, the praying mantis named Hugo. He is mainly Christopher’s passion but I also find him quite cute because he washes himself just like a cat. We feed him spiders we find in, and outside of, our apartment.

To conclude I want to recommend morning exercise for everyone struggling with getting the day started. Tomorrow morning I am going to attend water-aerobics. It’s fun because everyone just laughs all the time since it’s such a strange activity.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

most beautiful cover version

Click to hear Anthony Hegarty's version of "If it be your will" by Leonard Cohen...:

Friday, 22 May 2009

La Blogotheque

Now, because my French is confined to 'shettemm', 'shomapell sofie' and 'shesui un fromage' (excuse the phonetics, I simply cannot attempt to spell any of that properly), I am not able to tell you a great deal about the contents of La Blogotheque. I can only merely point you in the direction of the Concerts a Emporter (Concerts on the move?). This website is just wonderful and here in Studio 15 Napiershall, we are hooked, and repeatedly turn to La Blogotheque to get us through the day. Our favourite is Elvis Perkins, walking around in Paris singing 'While you were sleeping' - especially when he walks into the Place Vendome, just as the song reaches its climax.

Just wonderful.


Thursday, 7 May 2009

The Inner Workings of an Architecture Studio, or, F**K, Only 3 weeks left!

Oh dear. I thought I knew what hard work was, sitting in the MPH studying for my IB exams.

I didn't.

Now, knee deep in things to be done, me and Naomi decided we had to make the best out of the situation. What better to do than set up a studio in my unused livingroom and invite all my best architecture mates for a three week long party?
Liam has announced his arrival, bearing computer, mattress and espresso maker, and me and Names (yeah, I like to call her Names) are already hard at work.

Here are a few glimpses:

My favourite little setup, with the Ant shelf and all our architecture books close at hand. Note the Lidl bags used to transport all our model making scraps from the Real Studio.

The wall is our friend! It contains all our ideas and scrappy sketches.

The wall is not our BEST friend though, that would be UHU glue (the solvent free kind. We don't want to go completely loopy after all.)

When we get bored, we put the TV on. Watching the news for example. We need to know a little bit about what goes on outside these walls! Note also the stock of emergency food (sugar puffs, jaffa cakes, tortilla chips, granola bars and bourbon creams).

But, the most important feature of our studio is this wonderful view, reminding us what NOT TO DESIGN (Notably the gorgeous St Georges Road tower blocks):

Who knew stress could be so much fun!

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Music Box Underway!

Trying to think of urban strategies for my new project, the 'Music Box' aka some sort of community performing arts centre. Here are my initial thoughts... (these must be regarded as sketches!)

The project is in Stranraer (where the ferry goes from Scotland to Ireland), which used to thrive as a sort of seaside resort but has lost a lot of its charm. Cars have take over the whole town, and i am torn: should we accommodate for the cars (and maybe bring back the 50's drive-in cinema?), or should we provide some areas that are pedestrianized, trying to minimize the use of cars in the tiny town?


Monday, 27 April 2009

The most delicious thing...

I just wanted to share a recipe that my mum has shared with me, and which I always make if I'm having a dinner party, because it is DELICIOUS! And easy!

1. Make pizza dough:
- white flour
- dash of oil
- salt
- yeast
- water

2. Chop up enough gorgonzola and sundried tomatoes to sprinkle on the pizza

3. Half the dough, use a pin to make two equally sized pizza bases (form depending on your preference)

4. Spread the cheese onto one of the halfs, then spread the sundried tomato on top of that

5. Put the other pizza base on top of the one covered in cheese and tomato

6. squeeze the edges together to stop the cheese from running out

7. use some normal grated cheese (mozzarella and cheddar mix for example) and sprinkle on top of the bake

8. sprinkle some thyme over the cheese

9. put in the oven at about 200 C until the cheese on top is golden and a bit crusty


Unfortunately I don't have a picture of this bake yet, but I will post one once I make it again...
I always get compliments on this dish, so you should all try it! very easy!

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Recent Things of Interest

Finally a little sign of life from me on the blog.
Seeing as I have been quite caught up in holidaying, reading for exams and trying to finish various academic tasks, I haven't really had time to do very much else of interest. However, I am a big believer in the need for a little break now and then, so one day I ventured down to a second hand bookshop just off Otago Street in Glasgow, and snapped up these books for an impressively tiny price:

Not only do I look forward to reading these books, but also I can't wait to put them up in mine and Anthony's flat in London! We have struck a deal: he makes shelves and I put books on them. I love books! Good both for the mind and the eye, I'd say.
Also good on the eye is this lovely hook (hook??? help me out here, Shane) that Anthony gave me one day:

I haven't put it on the wall here in Glasgow; I am saving it for London, seeing as I only have about 2 months left here.
I can't wait to get down there! Our hope is to get a flat close to Broadway Market in Hackney - which brings me neatly to my next point: I picked up this book one day before easter, from a bookshop in said market, because it was a sunny day, Ant was at work, and I wanted to sit in the sun with a book:

I picked it up not really knowing what it was, but it turned out to be a delightfully insightful novel about people, how they interact, why they act the way they do, what they think, what MAKES them. I found it very thought provoking, and it is hereby recommended to all of you readers.

The sun doesn't only shine on London though, even Glasgow has been blessed with some uplifting sunshine lately. My next post might just be a little photographic story from sunny G. Till then, au revoir!

Friday, 27 March 2009

Taxes, continued

In my politics lecture this morning my professor, Frank Aarebrot (the picture), told us what we should say if we ever met an American who couldn’t understand how we could pay the high amount of taxes we pay. Funny, I thought, my friend Shane asked this question last year on the blog I don’t think neither me nor Sofie had great answers. So I will rephrase his words:

Imagine that Norway and USA has the same currency, called “money”. Both the Norwegian and the American earns 100 money a month. The Norwegian pays 44 money to the state each month while the American pays only 20 money to the state. But the American also pays the health insurance company 15 money and puts away 5 money for his or her children’s college fund. So in the end about the same proportion of money is spent on the same things. The difference is that in USA you have the freedom to be irresponsible and the freedom not to send your kids to college. The so-called Free Society based on value choices made by the citizens.

Just a little anecdote before the weekend. Now I’m about to make a “Mediterranean pie” before we have a guest arriving this evening. Thank you both so much for the post cards, they filled my with great joy. 

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

A Fortuitously Delicious Dinner

Now, I don't fancy myself a food blogger or anything, but my dinner last night [note: I wrote this in my journal weeks ago!] was so good I just have to tell the whole internet about it. It was also incredibly accidental in its composition. This is what was in the fridge and why:

1) Half a hummus container of orzo with mushrooms, onions, and cilantro, left over from a breakfast quite similar to this.

2) One hummus container of orzo carbonara which was quite accidental in its own composition: I had bought on a whim some halal turkey bacon the week before, and we were slowly working our way through it -- or rather, Brett was. Desperate to do something with the last couple of pieces, I typed turkey bacon into (best website EVER) and happened upon a recipe for carbonara sauce, which I thought I'd try my hand at. It worked out pretty well, though a little too meat-ish for me :).

3) Marinated feta with roasted red peppers, garlic, herbs, and balsalmic vinegar. I am pretty sure that last Friday was Seniors' Day at Trade Fair, my friendly neighborhood grocery store. Waiting in line at the deli counter, the woman in front of me gestured to her desired cheese with a swing of her cane, and teh woman behind me, walker in grocery cart, complained loudly in an old New York accent about the crowds, the deafness of the other Trade Fair patrons, and her leg. Just as I made it to the front to ask for my half-pound of feta, a babushka-wearing grandmother walked laboriously by in the opposite direction, a traffic jam of three impatient shoppers behind her. I guess my request got mixed up in the kerfuffle, and I ended up with a pound of feta instead of a half (isn't life hard?). Remembering the deliciousness of the rather expensive Apetina feta, I cut up some of the excess feta into cubes, roasted myself a red pepper, found some herbs and black peppercorns, and dropped them all into a jar with oil and a splash of balsalmic vinegar. Every day it gets yummier!

4) A bunch of spinach just days away from going bad.

5) Half a little jar of Newman's Own tomato sauce -- after reading this article, I decided to stop buying fresh tomatoes in winter to make my own sauce. Don't know if Newman's Own is much better, but I'm hopeful.

And this is what I did with it:

I put all of the mushroom/cilantro orzo and a couple of spounfuls of the carbonara orzo into a container with the washed and torn up spinach. Then, I fished many pieces of feta and roasted red pepper out of my jar of yumminess and threw them in as well. Finally, I added a couple of spoonfuls of tomato and mixed the whole thing up. Then I ate it and was very very happy :).

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Musical Retreat pt 2

Hello dear friends, I just thought I'd show you what I have been working on recently - this is not the final drawings, not the final design, but it gives you an idea of what I'm up to. I'm drawing construction drawings at the moment, to hand over to my engineer tomorrow... Happy days!
Hope you guys are having a more interesting Sunday!

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Tweets and Shelf

I feel like my engaging with virtual communication has reached new heights: I have joined twitter, on Shane's recommendation, and also put my twitter feed on the blog. I think we should all do the same, so we can tweet directly to the blog and it'll bring it more to life. Also, I wanted to show you a close up of the shelf Else mentioned, the one depicted behind the drawing board in the previous post - it was my birthday present from my lovely man, home made! And check this, a secret room with it's own little lamp and birthday card inscribed on the wall:


Anyone recognize the lighthouse? :)

Saturday, 31 January 2009


The Result:

How To Be Happy

I woke up this morning, looked around my messy room and felt so depressed I decided to stay in bed. But I got bored, so I looked around for something that could entertain me whilst in bed. I saw my TV, my computer, my shoddy magazine and some architectural history books. I didn't really feel like in engaging in any of these activities, but (seeing as I was feeling pretty lethargic) I turned on the TV to get entertained. Daytime TV is no friend of mine, I soon realized, when I looked through the channels and the most decent thing I came across was one of those nanny shows where a big fat British woman goes to visit an American family to teach them a thing or two about child-minding. Well, I watched it for a while and it just got me more depressed, because the nanny was an absolute power-loving idiot. I did, however, start thinking about how that show is not so much about the nanny as it is about a family needing help. So I thought to myself, "I could need a little help". Not with raising children, maybe with raising myself, or with being the person I was raised to be (I.e. someone with a positive attitude, an active life, not to mention a tidy room. Someone happy.) So I thought, where do I find a nanny? On the internet of course!
So I ventured into the world of self-help websites (WHAT? ME?), and was actually very positively surprised. Of course, most of what was written were things you have heard a million times before: "the only one who can change things is YOU", "happiness is not the same as lack of sadness", "happiness isn't always getting what you want", but I was after concrete advice on how to change things around. I found one which I thought was quite good, and i thought i should share it with you:
"Three components are essential for hope to thrive, Feldman says. They are having goals, as well as a plan and the motivation to achieve them. ... Feldman advises setting personally meaningful goals and checking to see where your hope falters — is it with the plan or the motivation?"
So, keeping this in mind (and knowing it is the motivation that is my problem), I have now made a plan of action:

1) Tidy my room (This WILL make me a happier person)
2) Doing fun things while doing it, so I don't get bored and turn the TV on again (Loud music, singing, dancing etc)
3) Reading my book to reward myself.
4) Posting pictures of it on the blog!

Ok, so now I've got a goal, a plan, and motivation, you can help be the judges of my success by popping into the blog to see when I finish my tidying!

Saturday, 24 January 2009

New Hobbies

My loves, it's been way too long. I wanted to share with you some new hobbies I have picked up/am picking up/will pick up:

1. Watching videos on the internet!!

Okay, this isn't actually a new hobby, but I wanted to share some cool videos I've seen recently:

2. Writing postcards on the subway!

This started two days ago and it is really fun. You should both expect a postcard from me soon! I got a book of Adrian Tomine cards and I have been using those :).

3. Crocheting using plastic bag yarn!

This one hasn't started yet, but it will soon. I saw this awesome tutorial on the internets, and I am ready to get rid of some of the million plastic bags Raia and I have amassed over the past months!