The twelve months of 2018

Six days left of this year. I think it’s been a pretty good one, but let’s look back, month by month. The highlights, books and pictures. The usual stuffs. Oh and quotes!

January
Highlight of the month: Short weekend at the company villa with my teens. Some cards against humanity, some GTA, some reading, some hot tub and sauna. Prime quality time <3

Quote of the month: “The term atheist should not even exist. No one ever needs to identify himself as a ‘non-astrologer’ or non-alchemist.’ We do not have a word for people who doubt that Elvis is still alive, or for people who doubt that aliens traverse the galaxy only to molest cattle.” – Dan Brown (Origin)

Book of the month: Theodore Wheeler – Kings of Broken Things
Intriguing in a broken kind of a way. Reminded me of Jess Walter and the sort of ugly yet charming stories of life in all its sometimes not so glorious colors. There was a time and a place and a society and a life so very different from that of today. Yet so oddly familiar.

Pic of the month:

Tammela
Morning in Tammela, the company villa

February
Highlight of the month: Operation catch the mouse Meggie found lurking in my son’s room. In the end, son caught the mouse in a box and I took it to the nearby forest, uninjured.

Quote of the month: ”Honey, your hair is like the mane of a wild lion whether you brush it or not.” – my husband

Book of the month: Khaled Hosseini – A Thousand Splendid Suns
A truly touching story of a woman and another woman struggling under the oppression of men. Of war, and the decline of a society in Afganistan. A reminder to us western women of the unfortunate fact that there’s a lot of women out there who don’t have it as good as we have it here.

Pic of the month:

duck.jpg
Duck at Talinranta on a very sunny winter day

March
Highlight of the month: The X-Files season 11. Yup.

Quote of the month: “Really, a novel does not exist, does not happen, until readers pour their own lives into it.” – Emma Donoghue

Book of the month: Emma Donoghue – Room
The little boy who didn’t even know a world beyond their four walls existed until the day of the great escape. The boy and the mom, in a twisted symbiosis, due to the imprisonment they lived in. The reality of the world, that almost crushed them both.

Pic of the month:

ice
Across the ice from Hakaniemi to Kaisaniemi

April
Highlights of the month:
– My son got his transgender diagnosis, allowing him to finally proceed to hormonal treatment and name changing.
– Bicycling with husband and daughter.

Quote of the month: “I think truth in fiction comes from how the words make you feel, rather than a reference to the facts behind them.” – Layton Green

Book of the month: J. Randy Taraborrelli – Madonna
The interesting story of the interesting super star.

Pic of the month:

bicycling
Out bicycling

May
Highlights of the month:
– My son got his name changed.
– Long weekend in Lisbon with my daughter – sightseeing, dinner at Hard Rock Café, a lot of shopping. Just great old time with my kid <3
– Trip to Tallinn with some friends.
– Building our garden.

Quote of the month: “Sometimes I feel like on different days I connect to different FE servers of reality, and they’re out of sync like one’s already got a patch installed that another one doesn’t have yet.” – me

Book of the month: Lucy Dillon – One Small Act of Kindness
Light reading, a feel-good story, even with the slight twist of evil in the midst. But then again – you will never truly appreciate the good without a touch of bad.

Pic of the month:

book
Reading in our backyard

June
Highlights of the month:
– Movie night with my teens – Thor Ragnarok.
– The Scottish ancestor! my cousin found after digging a bit into our family history (on mom’s side): Guilhelmus ‘William’ Andresson Udnie of Tillery, whose son moved to Vyborg to become part of my ancestry. Still tickles something in me.
– Working on the garden remodeling.

Quote of the month: “Jokaisella meistä on oikeus olla omana itsenään. Ilman että kukaan syrjii tai kenenkään tarvitsee kokea pelkoa. Vielä niin ei ole.”
“We all have the right to be ourselves without judgement and fear and discrimination. This is not a reality yet.”
– Anne Kantola, about Helsinki Pride in Helsingin Sanomat

Book of the month: Nina George – The Little Paris Bookshop
A story about love and life and obsession. Slightly blah with the “it’s been 20 years but I still can’t let go” but then again, the growth when he does <3 Oh, and all them books in the book!

Pic of the month:

hakku.jpg
The lady and the pickaxe

July
Highlights of the month:
– My daughter’s “protu-juhla”, ie. the 15yo growing up party, the secular version of a bat mitzvah or “rippijuhla”.
– Summer vacation!
– New car <3
– Weekend in the Turku archipelago with husband, dogs, daughter and step-daughter <3
– Week in Lapland with husband, dogs and daughter <3 BB-gun shooting, archery with a horse bow, kayaking, road trips, hot sun, reindeer.

Quote of the month: “Mä haluan nähdä sellaisen maailman, missä voin kävellä kadulla ilman, että joku tulee sanomaan, että vitsi sä oot rohkee kun sä oot oma itsesi. Missä mulle ei tarvi tulla sanomaan, että sä oot rohkee kun sä uskallat olla erilainen. Mä haluan nähdä maailman, jossa mä en ole rohkea.”
“I want to see a world where I can walk down the street without people coming up to me saying wow you must have a lot of courage to be yourself. Where no one feels the need to tell me it requires courage to be different. I want to see a world where I am not courageous.”
– Vili, 19yo, in Satakunnan Kansa, about being transgender

Book of the month: T. H. White – The Once and Future King
Long read with a lot of mythology, a lot of wisdom, a lot of philosophy. Enjoyable! A book everyone should read! Long live King Arthur!

Pic of the month:

2018-07-25 17.20.09
Meggie getting ready to jump – fuck this boat shit!

August
Highlights of the month:
– Mamma Mia – Here We Go Again. Cried through the movie. Love it <3
– Sausage making for the first time

Quote of the month: “You know it’s hot when you prefer wet shorts over dry sweats” -me

Book of the month: S. S. Taula – Vilkas vuorokausi
Loosely translated: An Eventful 24 Hours. A funny Finnish comedy book, old as shit. Summer, love, crime, serendipity with a little nudge from a couple of mischievous guys. Love of this book and returning to it every once and again is something I share with my dad.

Pic of the month:

Timmy
Timmy chillin’ at our summer place

September
Highlights of the month:
– My son turned 18! I became the mother of an adult :o
– Dinner cruise with husband <3

Quote of the month: “Truly, as the ancients taught us, there is nothing under the moon, however fine, that is not subject to corruption.” – C. J. Sansom (Dark Fire)

Book of the month: Ernest Cline – Ready Player One
Intriguing. Virtual reality in the aftermath of a global catastrophe. Trailer stacks and piles of abandoned cars and virtual reality everything. And a quest.

Pic of the month:

september
Warm autumn with bright colors

October
Highlight of the month: Helsinki Book Fair – went alone and fully enjoyed the event <3

Quote of the month: “I don’t hate [people]…I just feel better when they’re not around.” – Charles Bukowsky (Barfly)

Book of the month: Lisa See – Shanghai Girls
An enchanting story of two sisters making a narrow escape from Shanghai as the Japanese proceed to invade China. Settling to California under false pretenses of false citizenship of their in-laws and husbands, they struggle to scrape up a life for their new family.

Pic of the month:

Patu
Tatu (a kids’ book hero) and me at Book Fair

November
Highlights of the month:
– Another weekend at the company villa, this time with all three teens. Pizza, hot tub, cards against humanity, GTA, the works. Great times <3
– Muse Simulation Theory released + I got myself a ticket for their next summer gig in Helsinki <3

Quote of the month: ”Out of their context, she had behaved out of character. It made one wonder at the independence of character from place and from there to the strange, malleable liquidity of character itself.” – David Duchovny (Miss Subways)

Book of the monthDavid Duchovny – Miss Subways
A bit of mythology, or a bit more. A brain twister in a true Gaimanly manner. Entertaining and surprising with a nice touch of philosophy and unexplainables.

Pic of the month:

Library
My very favorite place at home: my library and fatboy <3

December
Highlights of the month:
– My son got his driver’s license.
– Phantom of the Opera at the Finnish National Opera, with my husband <3
– Company trip to Amsterdam.
– Christmas break with all that Christmas baking and good food!

Quote of the month: “Home country is kinda like a sibling. You criticize and bitch about it but if a foreigner complains, you’re ready to punch them for saying a bad word about your beloved homeland.” – me

Book of the month: Kari Hotakainen – Tuntematon Kimi Räikkönen
I haven’t exactly finished the book yet as I got it for Christmas, but I’ve read enough to know it’s definitely worth the read. The story of Iceman, Kimi Räikkönen behind the scenes where the ice melts. Written in an entertaining way.

Pic of the month:

Christmas
Our little pre-Christmas with teens (not here for the actual holidays)

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