Sweet second hand treasures.

Making mead wort powder – to be used as a vanilla essence in such as baked goods, for example, in my "new" mortar. The mortar must be the best find I have ever done, in a teeny tiny Swedish "loppis" – flea market, along the way on our camping trip last week. And I paid only 60SEK for it! That's about £5,60, and incredibly cheap for one here in Norway. And it's the perfect size as well!

This is going to be used a LOT for my herbs and spices!



… and may we meet again in happier times.

Our dear Bustopher passed away two days ago, and we lost the greatest cat anyone could ever ask for. He was as loyal as can be, he guarded the house and its inhabitants, and he always looked after the other cats when they were out. He was the perfect gentleman for his three ladies, always on guard, and he was also the most loving and caring cat. We could ask him to go find one of the other cats, and he would do so. Minutes or hours later (depends on how far he had to go) he would turn up, followed by the one we wanted him to find.
And all this from a former stray, that was so terrified of us that he ran away just seeing one of us through the window.

After a very cold winter 5-ish years ago, he turned up here just skin and bones and so exhausted he couldn’t walk for more than a few feet before he had to lie down to rest. We had seen him on and off for two years, but never in such a bad state. My mom started feeding him because we couldn’t watch him suffer any longer, and little by little he started trusting her, and on his own initiative, he slowly moved into the house. Since then he hasn’t been away at all, he claimed himself as the guardian of the house and always taking his responsibilities seriously.

So two days ago, we lost more than “just” a cat. I’m sure no one can ever fully replace Bustopher, he was really one in a million.

Throwback Thursday: Wonderful Oxford!

This Thursday is dedicated to my fond memories of my short stay in Oxfordshire last year. I had a wonderful time, I stayed with a lovely family whom I hope to meet again soon, the weather was impeccable and I was as happy as can be.
Looking through this blog post and the photos brought me back there for a moment, and I realized it has been over a year already! Crazy how fast time flies. I really miss Oxford, and I’m definitely going back there the next time I visit the UK. Those scones at The Rose tea rooms were to die for!!

Here’s a copy of the original blog post from Oxford. You can find more posts from my stay in the UK in the archive.


My stay in the UK didn’t go as planned at all, but it turned out almost better than I had expected it to be. I spent just one week at the stable I was supposed to stay at, and returned to the stable in Surrey. Just a couple of days later, kind of before I could wrap my head around everything, I was on my way to Bicester, Oxfordshire where I was going to be like an au-pair for my employer’s sister for about a week. I helped out painting the living room and looking after the four lovely kids, and even got days off to go to Oxford.

And from the moment I stepped out of the bus in Oxford, I fell in love. There’s old buildings and historic sites everywhere, and more universities than I had ever thought. And they were stunning as well, with cathedrals, towers, huge buildings and green parks.

The photos are from my first visit, and it was such a lovely day. My Nikkor 18-200mm lens is not working properly any more, so I mostly used my Nikkor 18-55 kit lens. I really wish I had a wide-angle lens, as I struggled to get good photos of some of the buildings and views.

A Bicester cat, enjoying the morning sun while I walked to the bus.

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University Church of St. Mary the Virgin. 

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This rather small church along the High Street made a bigger impression on me than even the big cathedral at Christ Church University. The tree with pink flowers outside, and the calm, relaxing and welcoming athmosphere inside.. I can’t explain it, but I just really liked it there. I liked the interior, with the wooden benches in contrast to the white pillars and arches. And the huge stained glass windows weren’t dark as they often are, they let in a lot of light and made the church feel open and bright.

The Radcliffe Camera – such an impressive building!

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Clarendon Building

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The view from the Carfax Tower.


Oxford is now one of my favourite places in the UK, and I will definitely be back there some day. I also had the best scones ever at The Rose tea rooms on High Street, with jam and delicious clotted cream, and a lovely cup of tea.
The brownie in my last blog post was at the Queen’s Coffee House, also on the High Street. My waitress was Danish and super friendly, and the brownie was to die for. I thought it a bit expensive at first, but the slice was huge and SO tasty. I highly recommend both places if you’re ever in Oxford and looking for somewhere to have tea or something sweet.

These modern winters..

When I grew up, we had snow every winter. It would come in November and stay until spring, and it would always be white outside on my birthday in December. Then suddenly one year, there wasn’t any snow on my birthday and we could play longball on the lawn. Since then the amount of snow at this time of year has been delivered as rain instead, and we’re left with a grey, brown, wet and cold view at Christmas instead of the snowy landscape we associate with the holidays. Nowadays, the snow usually comes in January, and stays around until March-ish.

I do prefer the snow, but one thing I like about these “modern” winters is the fog. I love fog, it makes the surroundings so mystical, unfamiliar and quiet..

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Photos taken with my phone, so not the greatest quality..