ten on ten: may 2015

i’m gonna cheat a tiny little bit. most of my photos are from yesterday, the 10th, but i am also gonna sneak in a photo or two from saturday. so, let’s call it a little ten on ten weekend, ok?

there was a bit of a theme this weekend, and if you saw my post yesterday, then you know that the theme was beer. oh, how i love me some beer.

but, let me be clear about this. i am no drunk. (yeah. i am just gonna be blunt about it). i don’t drink to get drunk. ever. and i don’t really even ever get drunk. i enjoy beer for many reasons, but it is never to escape or hide. i love beer, especially craft beer, because of the art of it. the process, the care, the beauty, the organic nature of it, the creativity, and the simple social part of enjoying something that was created out of passion with others.

so, this weekend, we enjoyed some beer – and then we made some beer! that’s right, my love and i brewed our first batch of beer. american pale ale. right now, it’s fermenting in a dark closet and our fingers are crossed tight. i guess we will see in a few weeks. exciting!

anyway, here some my 10 (ish) beer-themed photos from the weekend. enjoy!

lunch-churchhill-arms me-beer family-beer-saturday-boathouse morning-cozy preparing-homebrewing temperature-homebrewing homebrewing-me

waiting-boiling- homebrewing-wort-boil

home sofa tv-relax-me

here’s to hoping that you had a great weekend! and, that your week is productive, beautiful, and filled with adventures of all kinds!

and… never, ever forget to do what you love.

onwards + upwards! xoxo



an exciting weekend getaway on a floating city: cruising on the baltic sea

when you think of sweden, i’ll bet you don’t really think of cruises. i didn’t, until i lived here. i did understand that swedes are sea people, forest people, nature-loving people. most people live in the big cities of sweden, but the majority of sweden is untouched, natural, wild, and beautiful, including a long, wonderful coastline. and swedes find anyway that they can to get out and enjoy nature.

stockholm, the capital of sweden, actually lies on a bunch of little islands…it is an archipelago. and it’s just a short boat ride through + around the archipelago to the open sea. the baltic sea, which separates sweden and finland/estonia.

swedes love the water. they love seafood, love the sun + the waves. love the special life that is archipelago life. in fact, if you are a lucky swede, you live in the city and have a little “stuga” (cabin) in the archipelago by the sea, or out in the woods beside a lake. this is where swedes spend their summers and weekends. of course this is a dream of mine too. i want to have a place in a small little community on an archipelago island. a place where i can write and be and relax. where i can walk everywhere + have to use my little boat to get back to the mainland.


however, in the meantime, since i don’t have one of these places, i have the opportunity to take  a 22 hour cruise across the baltic to get a little taste of the sea life. this is a very, very popular way to spend a weekend here in sweden. a chance to getaway, dance, drink, party, shop (tax free!), and feel the sea breeze. (not really the simple archipelago life, but is does get you out to sea. hehe).


photo from here.

and that is exactly what i did this past weekend with 7 other family members + friends. we left uppsala, took the train down to the harbor in stockholm and boarded a huge cruise ship (pictured above!) for an overnight cruise to åland… a group of islands close to finland. we had a super, amazing blast. and i have a TON of photos to share with you!

running in uppsala… don’t want to miss our train!


made it to stockholm in 40 minutes! now: taxi ride from the train station to the

unloading + getting our 1st view of our ship!!cruise-ship

beautiful STOCKHOLM in the backgroundsotckholm-cruise-ship

checked in + waiting to board. what to do? why, a group cheers to our trip, of course!cruise-cheers beer-lina-me

onboard + on the back deck to check out the view before leaving dockstockholm-harbor

best usie/groupie ever, i think. love these people!the-gang-ship-cruise

alone on the back deck for a moment… soaking in this beautiful shipback-deck

we set sail + ran as high as we could so we could get a good view and wave goodbye to stockholm
top-deck top-deck-running stockholm me-cruise-ship-stockholm stockholm-sunshine-harbor top-deck-stockholm lina-and-me top-deck2

back downstairs into the big lounge area for our first drinks! cheers (again!)!drinks-cruise-ship

when our rooms were ready, we headed to our cabins to change for dinnercruise-ship-cabins-hall

our cabin: 4 beds + a huge porthole window!

dinner buffee (with all the drinks you can manage also included)dinner-ship dinner-cruise-ship

the blue hour on decktwilight-archipelago


darkness came + the party began!dance-cruise-ship dance-gang-ship

a few quiet (and super windy + cold) moments on the deck in the dark. eerie and peaceful all at the same time.

i slept for 2 hours. hehe. so to wake myself up i headed out on deck in the cold and wind. it was an invigorating, inspiring, soul-filling moment. just me + the sea.baltic-sea morning-open-sea-baltic

then i was joined by my love and our friend. morning-ship-sea

after breakfast + some tax free shopping, i literally sat here in this panorama bar on the top floor of the deck for the entire rest of the trip. our group gathered here, recovering, resting, and just enjoying the view.panorama-bar-ship top-deck-archipelago archipelago-sweden

my brother-in-law invited me to have an appletini with him. a little end of the cruise celebration about an hour before we island-sweden birka-cruises

i’ve never done anything like this before, and it was so fun. intense, exhausting, and fuuuuun! of course, i couldn’t wait to get home and just throw myself on the couch. which is exactly what my love + i did. we ordered pizza, netflixed as long as we could stay awake, and then headed to bed to sleep for 11 hours.

i think i’m all cruise-shipped out for a while, but i’d definitely do it again! it’s great fun to spend a weekend with friends + family, just letting it all go. relaxing, dancing, eating. i loved it.

but about that archipelago cabin…. one day!


ten on ten: april 2015

hi everyone! yesterday was friday the 10th, so that means that i took a bunch of photos to chronicle my day! i am taking part in a little photo challenge called ten on ten. it’s so much fun! it was actually a pretty busy + exciting day, so i love my photos bunches..

here’s a lttle summary of what happened: after my morning at home, i headed to the train station to meet lina’s sister, who was coming to spend the weekend in uppsala. lina’s brother lives here, too, so they planned this weekend as a sibling weekend together – of course, i get ot be with them too (and jonas’ fiancée too!). i spent a relaxing afternoon with my sister-in-law, soaking up the crazy awesome spring sunshine. then, we met up with everyone else after work, for some beer and then dinner out. we ended the night together at lina’s brothers place for a long, cozy, evening just talking and enjoying each other’s company. it was a really great friday.

here come the photos!

morning on the sofa with my love. breakfast. coffee. the news.


i spent the morning at home: writing, blogging, doing chores – like taking care of my amazing herb collection that seems to just keep on living!herbs

off to the train station to meet my sister-in-law’s train!train-station

waiting… in the sun. in my spring-inspired outfitspring-clothes

oh you know, just a regular fika in the sun with a castle in the background
cookie-and-coffee outside-fika-castle

what’s a day without a cathedral visit?

cathedraltime to stock up: a trip to the alcohol store. what all swedes do on fridays (it’s closed on the weekend!) alcohol-store-sweden

afternoon drinks on the rooftop terrace of my love’s office building.

cheers! dinner time with the fam!cheers-family

we spent a super cozy evening at lina’s brother’s place. and then walked home at midnight – and it wasn’t cold. woo hoo!nighttime-apt

so, friday wasn’t the only fun time this weekend. it just gets better… today we are going to take a train to stockholm and then board a boat for a cruise! that’s right! we are gonna cruise in the baltic sea to a little island between sweden + finland. 24 hours of food, fun, dance, and adventures with 8 family + friends. you know… the family that travels together, stays together!

have a great weekend!! xoxo

yes, i posted more than 10 photos. hehe. 


four favorites friday

helloooo friday! they just keep coming faster + faster it seems. i can barely get a handle on it. it blows my mind. and, it has gone quickly even though i have stayed in almost all week long. i don’t know what got into me this week that made me feel like being a hermit. but it’s not like i haven’t been busy… i mean, i searched + applied for jobs, i wrote, i did a lot of spirituality-related stuff, i cooked some, i cleaned, i talked with my parents. but, i just didn’t feel like going anywhere. the only times i left the apartment were to do a short grocery store run and to sit in on an afternoon lecture at uppsala university. still, it was a really good week. i felt slow and calm. so, i have no regrets. i suppose i just felt unsocial this week. i needed to be introverted.

today, i thought i’d end my kinda of solitary week (minus being with my amazing little family) by sharing four of my favorite things this friday. not a series that i’m going to start to do on fridays or anything, but it just popped into my head. i haven’t made the list yet, i’m gonna wing it and see what i end up with. i am thinking that these four favorite things might be tips or moments or ideas or whatever. so, here we go. let’s see what i come up with as i think back on this week.

1. favorite new idea | a minimalist wardrobe. that’s right. i’ve decided to minimize my wardrobe. what that means is that i will go through everything i brought to sweden with me and get rid of everything that i don’t wear. i will only keep certain basic things, and i will create a palate from which to work as i assemble new items. the palate will be filled with white, gray, and black. denim and a few splashes of earthy colors for accessories + such. this is a way more girlie than i usually am, but it feels amazing. it feels like giving my wardrobe an upgrade + organizing it all at the same time. i’ll keep you posted! in the meantime, you can follow my “minimalist” board on pinterest –> here!


2. favorite quote | being. consciousness. bliss. | i used this sanskrit mantra everyday this week. just saying it evokes a sense of peace + calm. try it!


3. favorite scary moment | attending a lecture on theology at uppsala university. the whole thing was in academic swedish and it blew my mind: the language + the content. when i realized that it was a small class, i begged and begged the universe to not let the professor call on me. he didn’t. so, i survived. the whole thing was freaking amazing.


4. favorite surprise | internet on my computer. by now, most of you know that our internet situation has been shaky since moving to uppsala. and that’s putting it nicely. hehe. well, for some reason, this week my computer has connected to {one of the two} wireless internet gadgets that we have tried. so, that means that all week, i could cozily blog and write and job search from home. yesssss.

desk-home-sweden-computerbut, enough about home now, it’s time i haul my ass up out of this chair and get headed downtown. there is a book sale going on all over town  – an annual nationwide week-long book sale, people! so, you know i gotta get myself to a bookstore. and fast! i think i’ll also grab a coffee out at a café as well for a little solo fika before meeting up with my love to start our weekend. she sent me a photo of a wristband to get into a beer festival here in town – something that she just got while she was at work. i don’t know what that means. are we going to a beer festival?! is she going with her work?! and i just happened to tell her about it yesterday. i am dying to know more!

so, yes… it’s time for the weekend! and i believe, no matter what happens, it’s gonna be a busy one – but busy in the best of ways!  wishing you a lovely, fun-filled, relaxing weekend, friends!

onwards + upwards! xoxo

words for the weekend

“I have to be alone very often. I’d be quite happy if I spent from Saturday night until Monday morning alone in my apartment. That’s how I refuel.”  – Audrey Hepburn

“Music always sounds better on Friday.” – Lou Brutus

“Hands up if you’re ready to do something you’ll regret this weekend. Go forth! You have my blessing.” – Florence Welch

“It’s not that we spend five days looking forward to just two. It’s that most people do what they enjoy most on those two days. Imagine living a life where everyday are your Saturdays and Sundays. Make everyday your weekend. Make everyday a play-day…” – James A. Murphy

happy weekend, lovely ones! i hope yours is filled with exactly what you want and need. and, if it somehow doesn’t live up to your expectations, then join me in the belief that it is up to us to create our own bliss. now… go, live, enjoy, + celebrate what it means to be alive!

love + light xx


i’m moving my blog!

it’s sunday morning + i have no idea what i’ve gotten myself into! i’ve set up my own space on the internet for self hosting and i think my new web hosting company is in the process of transferring my blog ( this blog you are on right now! ) over to my new space. all of this is so exciting + frees me up to do so much more, like to create a whole new website and keep my blog! but, warning! my blog may be a little crazy for the next few days, or disappear, or… I don’t know. in any case, this is fun stuff!!

i have been thinking about moving over to a self hosted website for about a year now, and i decided that since i am physically moving to another country, i might as well move my blog/website at the same time. make sense, right?

so, wish me luck + and hang on! don’t leave me or think that i have disappeared, depending on what happens. and… just a head’s up, you may have to choose to follow me again once i am moved over to my new space. but, i’ll keep you posted on the progress, i promise! until then, just keep checking back here. it should (hopefully) be normal for a while!

how are you spending your sunday/or monday?!

light + love xx

36 hours in atlanta

happy tuesday! if you follow me on instagram, then by now you know that my love + i snuck off this past weekend for a little getaway in atlanta, georgia. it’s only three hours away, so it’s totally doable, but the real reason we left (besides just having some time to reconnect + have pure, simple fun), was to visit some amazing friends that we haven’t seen since new year’s!

weekend bag

so, we packed one little bag and headed down south on a gorgeous, beautiful, autumn day. traffic wasn’t too bad, and the excitement of driving in the big city again made me super happy. i totally love the challenge of driving on a big ass highway. weird, i know. and probably because i don’t have to fight traffic on a daily basis.

atlanta highway road trip

first up on our list – a little zombie adventure. so, we drove straight on through the city, right through all the big skyscrapers, and headed south – out of town. we were on a mission: visit the filming locations for the awesome series the walking dead!! lina and i had lists of places to go. i drove. lina navigated. we may have gotten a little lost + a teeny bit frustrated/worried on the rural roads of georgia, but i’ll never tell…senoia, georgia rural

however, after driving and turning around and driving some more… jackpot! we suddenly spotted zombies outside a restaurant! gaaaah! be prepared for a lot of walking dead photos and lingo right now – so sorry if you are not a fan! and if you are, and aren’t up to the current episode, then there may be some spoilers here.

the walking dead zombies

check this out: right behind that fence is the prison! of course, we never saw the prison, because there was a no trespassing sign since that area belongs to a filming studio. go figure. still. those woods. that fence. the prison!

the walking dead prison

so, we kept driving a bit more and ended up in the little bitty town of senoia, georgia. here we were planning to find some houses used in some scenes in the movie, according to our little map. what i did not expect was to see this when we turned onto main street:the walking dead woodbury

what?! it’s woodbury – the sick little town that the governor set up. they filmed everything right here in the middle of town! senoia IS woodbury! soooo cool. ok. so, now we were officially geeking out. there was even a walking dead store on the corner underneath the water town. and in the basement of the store… a little museum of things using in filming episodes. like i said, we were geeking out, people!

the walking dead

the walking dead darryl motorcycle

the walking dead prison

the walking dead prison

the walking dead

the walking dead carl pudding

this is the house where carl finds pudding + sits on the roof!

the walking dead train tracks to terminus + the bridge that they used for a tunnel (season 4)

railroad tracks leading to terminus + the bridge that they used to film the tunnel scene in (season 4)

the walking dead hershel's farm

the entrance to hershel’s farm!

the walking dead terminus

t e r m i n u s !!!!

the walking dead terminus

the walking dead terminus

after leaving terminus, we sped through downtown atlanta, making our way to the world of coca-cola (a museum about coke, which was invented by a pharmacist in atlanta). we spent about an hour there and then headed over to meet one of the friends we were staying with for some drinks in the funky little five points neighborhood – love that area.


world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

world of coca cola

friends atlanta

beer drinks friends

the evening consisted of dinner, drinks, friends, + so much fun. back at our friends’ home, we had talked about the walking dead so much, we decided to all curl up on the couch and watch the first episode again – you know, just for the hell of it. so, two dogs, a cat, and two couples all snuggled in reliving the craziness of the beginning of an amazing series.

friends atlanta

friends atlanta

friends atlanta beer

in the morning, we got up + began our morning with some coffee. one of our friends had to go to a work interview for a few hours, but we kept it cozy + real at home. i got lots of pooch snuggles, drank an insane amount of coffee, had delicious quiche and hashbrowns for breakfast, and enjoyed the company of my love + by blogging buddy, lanie. we talked and talked and talked and talked some more, catching up and having such a wonderful time together. you know, just simple, good ole friend time.

friends atlanta dogs

friends atlanta dogs

friends atlanta coffee

our friend’s wife returned and she was so shocked to still see us sitting there. yes, it had been about 4 hours, and we had not moved. but, we were getting in some major quality time together. but now that charlie was back, we decided to make a move and take the dogs on a walk.

it was a gorgeous atlanta day, and the girls showed around their neighborhood. we just wandered and strolled for about an hour or so. it was perfect. relaxing, hilarious, fun.

friends atlanta walking avondale lake

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

friends atlanta walking avondale lake autumn

unfortunately, we had to leave mid-afternoon to get back to asheville. regular life and responsibilities called us back. but, i was so refreshed + energized by our 36 hour retreat to atalanta. we crammed a bunch in, but it didn’t feel stressed. and, i got to be with my love – focusing on her and enjoying her company. oh, she’s my everything – my best friend + my soulmate.

 we had an amazing weekend, and it was oh so much fun to see lanie + charlie. we gotta get together soon again, girls – thank you so much for letting us crash! in the meantime, a beautiful north carolina sunset greeted us as we crossed the state line.

atlanta north carolina sunset

if you could do something fun for 36 hours, what would you do?!

light + love xx


one day last week, my love and i were driving home, discussing whether we should or should not head over to a local brewery for some beer. just because. well, the weather was pretty damn near perfect – deep blue skies, a chill in the air, warm sun. i mean, peeeerfect. we decided to save money and drink a bottle of gaelic (highland brewing) each at home on our balcony – smart girls, huh? truth: we were a little dejected and disappointed. but, we felt responsible.

as soon as we got home, though, i got a text from my brother that basically said: “this is by water weather”. the bywater is my favorite outdoor watering hole (it’s where we held out 70th birthday party a few weeks ago). lina and i looked at each other, pondered what to do for a minute, then i texted my brother: “we are leaving in 5!”

at the bywater, sitting around a campfire, watching the sun dip down behind the mountain on the other side of the river, we began talking about the upcoming weekend. nick was going over to help my parents hang some beadboard on their walls. (they are settling in nicely!). lina and i decided that we’d get tickets to oktoberfest in downtown asheville, happening on saturday!! FUN.



so, the rest of the week came and went. we stayed home thursday + friday nights = good, responsible girls. but, saturday, we celebrated oktoberfest the asheville way. with local breweries. woooo.

a street in the south slope part of downtown (the new, up + coming hip area of asheville) was blocked off and we stood in line to get out tickets – luckily we had bought tickets early, because the event was sold freaking out. paige was even able to snap a ticket a the last minute line.

at 1:00 pm, the gates opened, we received out little souvenir stein, and we were ready for beer – along with tons of other people. a german polka band was playing music on an outdoor stage and tents & tents of breweries lined the street. all we had to do was stand in line for a minute, hand them out stein, and they filled it with beer. amazing!

the event was from 1-6, and i did not anticipate staying the whole time, but time flew by and we were there the entire 5 hours. filling our steins. talking. people watching. laughing. dancing. drinking. and having super fun. of course, we had a method to our madness… when we walked through the gate, we went straight down to the end of the road (the farthest tent away, walking past everything), so we could start at the end and work our way back up, thereby missing the crowds at the beginning who were all crowded at the first few tents. and, we would also be at the entrance/exit at the end of the day. perfect planning.







celebrating our first taste + our free pretzel/beef stick necklaces given to us by highland brewing!IMG_8738

a guy sitting under a beer tent, writing poetry on the spot. just name a topic and off he went! IMG_8759





weird photo, i know. but we are smelling the most wonderful smelling/tasting pumpkin ale in the area – courtesy of catawba brewingIMG_8776



there was even a place near the entrance/exit that we visited at the very end of our day: a breathalyzer tent. so, now, after drinking beer for 5 hours, we could test and see how drunk we were. i won’t revel that other girls’ scores, but let’s just say that they were not legal to drive. one was just over not legal. and one was waaaay over legal. i’ll never tell which was which. hehe.

me? i blew a 0.067, which is totally legal and quite below the legal limit of 0.08. i’m not sure if it’s a good or bad thing that i can drink so much and still not be drunk. at the same time, i’m always the designated driver, so at least we are safe. ha!


we left this year’s oktoberfest behind, taking with us lots of memories and a yearning to try oktoberfest in munich, germany best year. stay tuned to see if that happens!

now, it’s time to be responsible liz again. it is monday, you know. hope your weekend was a good one!

love + light.

making time for my love

lina and me

Whoa, life has been busy lately. So crazy… and I have been no where near living any semblance of a regular life. I mean, nothing’s been really bad. A tiny bit of stress, but just so much other stuff to focus on mostly. And, I have been so thankful that I have been here to give my attention to other people and other things for the past 3 and a half months, but I need me time. More importantly, I need me and Lina time.

I’ve been thinking… in addition to communication and respect and honesty, the one thing that I find so important in marriage/relationships is making time for each other. Just the two of you. And, while I’d love to book that ticket to some island and just go dangle my feet in a pool with my love beside me for a week, I know that is not possible. However, it is most definitely possible to set aside time for each other – just my love and me. So, that’s what we’re gonna do. Of course, there are lots of amazing people to see and things to do this weekend, but, we will also carve out time to just sit in our home, stuff our faces with popcorn and wine, and binge on True Blood’s last season. We will make some meals together, drink coffee on the balcony together, and work in our studio together.

Yep, for the next few days, I’m giving all my attention to the one who makes my world go ’round. Happy Friday Eve, peeps!!

Peace & love. xx