It's already the end of August and we have that feeling of autumn in the air. I have always liked the autumn days.
And what I have been doing, here's my last week:
*Friday 17 working, my husband left for a trip, watching the Mulholland Drive by David Lynch. Walking a really long walk with the dog.
*Saturday 18 doing some work in the garden, shopping, reading, cleaning, talking in the phone with a friend for a long time.
*Sunday 19 preparing a speech, getting my husband from the train station but beeing late
*Monday 20 working and working
*Tuesday 21 working and being tired
*Wednesday 22 working, giving a speech to some researchers and attending a panel discussion, later meeting some friends in a pub.
*Thursday 23 working, cleaning, watching some episode of the Lost.
Sounds pretty boring, doesn't it?
I am waiting
- the swimming hall in Eastern Helsinki to open after the summer break
- women's choir weekly rehersals to start
- French for travellers course to start
- the concert of Bo Kasper's orchestra next Monday in Helsinki
- a nice weekend for a mushroom picking trip to a nearby forest
This reindeer herding dog surely knows how to bark and howl.
Last weekend we had Metallica, Rolling Stones (August) and Gwen Stefani (October) are yet to come.
It would have been wonderful to see Metallica, but I couldn't imagine myself waiting for tickets in line for hours and hours.
Gwen Stefani would be a lovely girl-thing to do. You know, just us girls. Also Suzanne Vega (favourite from ages ago) is coming to town.
Instead, I am going to a concert in Pori Jazz festival. I am going to see Elvis Costello and Steely Dan. What an adult thing to do.
And so we did.
This time we drove to Nummi-Pusula and visited the dairy museum there. I was amazed to see a picture of my grandfather. Made 1957. Brilliant! We also saw a lot of other things - including these cheese making equipments.
The Finnish dairy company Valio restaured this old Saukkola dairy to a museum. Quite interesting.
From Saukkola we drove to Elias Lönnrot's birth cottage (Paikkarin torppa), but we couldn't visit it because they were having a open air play there. So instead we drove to Lammi house, which was Elias Lönnrot's last home. Both the birth cottage and the Lammi house are situated in the countryside of Sammatti, Finland.
The Lammi house was very isolated, because Elias wanted to do a lot of work like write a hymnbook and Swedish-Finnish dictionary. He didn't want to spend his time socializing with other people.
And if somebody doesn't know, it was Lönnrot who made/collected our national epos Kalevala.
Elias Lönnrot in Wikipedia (English)
More about Lammi house (English)
Lammin talo, Elias Lönnrotin viimeinen asuinpaikka (Finnish)
Search Sammatti in Finnish maps, Map of Finland
In the afternoon we drove to Otepää and Pyhäjärvi spa by the Pyhäjärvi lake. We visited an ancient hillfort in Otepää, relaxed by the lake and had a nice walk. We also followed triathlon competition.
Today we are going to have a lava stone massage and later in the afternoon we are going to visit Sangaste manor house. Tomorrow we shall continue our journey to Võru.
My juhannussiivot is going to be something not so big, just normal weekly cleaning. But I quess many families in Finland clean really throughly for this holiday. It is the old tradition. Then after everything is very clean inside the house, you bring two young birches by your doorstep and put some summer flowers in a vase.
A link to a nice Midsummer in Finland page
Long time ago
Originally uploaded by Riikka's photos
Katja ja Riikka
This is an old photo of me and Katja. I took this with a mobile phone. I'm just testing how I can do mobloging (mobile blogging) using Flickr and Blogger together. Seems to work. Amazing.
One part of my family research has been trying to find out more about those relatives of mine who went to the USA or Canada at the end of the 19th century or at the beginning of the 20th century.
My family comes from the old province of Vaasa in Finland, we might also call it the region of South Ostrobothnia.
I have been very lucky during the past few years. Thanks to my own research in the National Archives and different parish offices in Finland, but also thanks to marvellous internet databases and very helpful people with their e-mails, I have been able to find what happened to my lost relatives.
Maybe it's time to give something back. Help the Finnish Americans to trace their roots in Finland.
So here's five good hints:
1. Do your research first in the USA, find out as much as you can by asking relatives, neighbours. Look the old family bible, there might be something written on it. Or find old photos, old letters.
2. Deepen your research, look for census records (online), draft records, marriage records, death records. Maybe www.ancestry.com databases and www.familysearch.org can help you.
3. Seek for travelling documents. After 1892 most people came through Ellis Island. In Finland, go to the web site of Finnish Institute of Migration ( Siirtolaisuusinstituutti). They have online database on passports and ship records.
4. Look for the Finnish church books online in the web site of Finnish Genealogical Society. The database is called HisKi. We also have a new database in Finland called Digiarkisto. They already have some communion books online. If online doesn't help, write an e-mail to the parish office - they will help you (it might be slow and they charge for their services - however, the price is usually reasonable).
5. ASK for help. For example the Finnish Genealogical Society has a good mailing list in English. It's called Finngen.
Last, but not least I made you a podcast in English about finding your ancestors in Finland.
You can open in here:
* Podcast about genealogy by Riikka
Panu: I'm emptying the washing maschine.
Are you going to do something nice this week?
- I'm travelling to Paris tomorrow.
What was the last book you have read?
- The Shadow of the Wind. It's written by a Spanish author Carlos Ruiz Zafón. It was a mystery novel. The plot was interesting and at times it was funny. The novel told about books and what they mean to different people.
This year wasn't that great for us. Our Hanna was number 17. Which, I have to admit, wasn't a huge surprise...
Instead, Eurovision song contest this year reminded me of the Intervision song contest (former Eastern bloc answer to Eurovision). The winner was Serbia (1). Then Ukraine (2), Russia (3), Turkey (4) and Bulgaria (5).
East European countries voted for other East European countries or Russia. The former republics of Jugoslavia voted for the former republics of Jugoslavia.
Oh well, Scandinavia isn't that neutral to this phenomena (voting for you neighbor) either. Sweden and Iceland gave Finland 12 points (highest score).
Even though Finland didn't win this time (it sure is pretty amazing that we won last year), I think we still won something. We were able to show the rest of the Europe that we can make terrific tv shows with the best visual effects ever !!!!
This year First of May was rather cold. We are having frost at night time. The flowers in my garden don't really enjoy it. Poor them.
They are talking about Estonia and Russia in the evening news. Russia is bullying around. No question against who we have our army.
The coast is rocky and there are some pines, spruces and birches. Also some junipers.
Look the photos of the Finnish manufacturer Kannustalo.
Take a virtual tour in the house called "Aurora"
Today we were first spending some time in Hollola summer house, later in the afternoon we arrived back to Helsinki and did some gardening work.
It's a spring crocus. We are having a very warm early spring in Finland right now. They said on tv yesterday that here in southern Finland the spring is 3 weeks ahead of its normal time.
Eli kuvassa on krookus pihallamme Helsingissä, näitä aikaisin tulleen kevään merkkejä.
I kept wondering if massage is easier to do when you are blind, if you can sense better with your hands. I didn't dare to ask, how would she know. We talked about that being a masseuse or masseur is a very traditional profession for a blind person, but nowadays things have changed a lot. With right kind of equipment a blind person can for example work with the computer for the IT-industry.
Last week we were on holiday in Athens. The weather was lovely, very spring-like, there were already some flowers blooming and the sun was warming the air. We also visited the island of Egina (=Aegina) which is known for its pistachio nuts.
Athens had a lot of history and culture to offer. We visited for example the archeological museum, Acropolis, Agora and Kerameikos graveyard.
I liked strolling in the narrow roads of Plaka, which is a town part near Acropolis. In the evenings we often ate supper in the area of Psyrri (Psiri), which is known from its restaurants and bars.
Here are some hints for eating in the Athens:
Lunch: I would recommend a restaurant called Byzantino in Plaka. It is situated near the small park on Kydatheneon street. We ate dolmades and moussaka.
Dinner: Taverna Tou Psiri in Psiri (Psyrri). Decoration is nice and so is the price level. You can choose what you want to eat from the kitchen. Also it seems to be popular among the local people, which to me is always a good sign. Address: Eschilou 12.
Here is a list containing 10 other Riikka blogs:
- Dream hunter
- La la love you
- Project Hapsi
- Riikan neulesivut
- Minä suojelen sinua kaikelta
- Sometimes I miss you so much
- Riikan -
The blogs are in random order, so this is not a top list. I am just truly amazed how brilliant women the Riikkas of the world are. It must be the name :-)
I urge you to go to check them, all are different from each other and there's all kinds of things to be learned.
We are travelling to Athens on Monday. I have always wanted to see Acropolis. I am also looking forward to eat in some nice restaurants. I really love Greek food.
Here's a recipe:
Some green salad
1 red onion
some feta cheese
12 black olives
sauce: olive oil, vinegar, some salt and pepper
Last Thursday we went to see my brother singing in a choir. The concert of Akateeminen Laulu was with quite modern type of music. Also a lot of Kalevala, as it was Kalevala day (28th Feb) here in Finland. Kalevala is our national epos. My parents were also here, as my brother has his 30th birthday tomorrow. Happy Birthday to him!
Monday we all in Finland heard sad news from this road. Two young women had been killed in car accident with a truck between Ilmajoki and Kurikka. The road was icy, as it was on Sunday.
So, be careful out there! The road might not be salted.
Then I'm heading for a train that will transfer me from
Helsinki to Seinäjoki.
Tomorrow I'm attending a family research or genealogy event in Seinäjoki.
This is my dearest hobby and I'm hoping to meet a lot of friends and strangers.
Relatives as well.... I'm also going to follow some interesting speeches about old maps
and farmers as court members in 18th century Finland.
I wonder if I'm going to catch the moment of blue in the train. It's so pretty, the Finnish countryside with the snow, when the twilight comes.
I made a video of Jekku in the dog park. Just press play!
As you can see, our Jekku won his racism against mopsi type (=pug type) of dogs...
See a larger video in YouTube.
Olimme Jekku-koiran kanssa Puotilan koirapuistossa käymässä. Vaikka sää oli kirpeä, niin hiihtäjiä piisasi. Paljon ihmisiä perheineen oli myös Vartiokylänlahden jäällä. Mietimme, että kestääkö jää jo tarpeeksi hyvin. Valkamissa näytti hyvinkin ohuelta. Jekku tapasi koirapuistossa Sallin ja voitti rasisminsa lyttynaamaisia koiria kohtaan. Lisää voit katsoa videosta yllä. Paina vain play tai katso video isompana YouTubesta.
As you can see, I have added a text in Finnish to this post. I shall be doing that also in the future, because clearly at least some of the readers want me to write in Finnish as well. More discussion about this in my earlier post.
Kirjoitan nyt siis tässä blogissa aina muutaman rivin myös suomeksi, koska jotkut lukijat siihen houkuttelivat. Enemmän keskustelua asiasta aiemmassa postauksessani.
I should be in bed by now - otherwise I won't get enough sleep.
It has been terribly cold in Helsinki today. Freezing. This is really the day you would need long woollen underpants if you happened to own a pair. I try to avoid going out.
See Helsingin Sanomat story about the weather in Finland
This is a test.
I met two of my friends. Sari and Eve. Sari has her birthday today, so congratulations once again! We ate some Runebergin torttu - a small cake which got it's name after the famous Finnish poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg.
Runeberg has his birthday 5th February and we celebrate it every year in Finland. (so as you can see we ate our cakes one day ahead...).
Read more about Runeberg in Wikipedia.
Later I made an abstract of an article in Estonian women's magazine called Anne for my language course tomorrow. We had a warm day again here in Helsinki, but we still have some snow. I have to wake up really early tomorrow. My working day starts next week at 7 and that's a killer.
(Haluaisitteko hyvät blogini lukijat, että kirjoittaisin tätä englannin lisäksi myös suomeksi? Jos niin, niin miten?)
If yes, then how should I do that?
Few lines in English and few in Finnish? Or every other post in Finnish and every other in English? Same text translated or different text?
Or not at all? Just in English. Or maybe something in German? Estonian? Swedish?
To be or not to be....
It's just that I have a Finnish blog called Sukututkimus www.sukututkimus.blogspot.com. But this blog is strictly about genealogy (searching your ancestors and that stuff).
This weekend we were visiting my parents-in-law at their vacation home in Hollola. The weather was bright and sunny. The dog enjoyed, except the moment when the cat (called Nasu) decided to hit him with his pawn.
Winter is finally here. We had -23 degrees Celsius on Monday, it's like -10 Fahrenheit. Everything was covered with snow and ice. Sun was shining.
It's amazing feeling, after all this darkeness -- and suddenly everything bathes in white.
More photos about Ilmajoki.
And I have to say I'm pleased. It's not de luxe model but works well with soft covers. Colours are all right and paper quality is good.
Here are some photos of the book:
Inside the book
Finnish News Agency STT writes that Darlene Conley who acted Sally Spectra's role in the soap opera Bold and Beautiful died last Sunday. The cause of death was cancer. She was 72 years old. B&B is very popular in Finland as well and Sally was important part of the show. She played the part in tv since 1988, which makes it almost 20 years.
In Finland B&B is about one year behind the USA. So Sally will be in B&B here in Finland until next December.
(STT kirjoittaa, että Tv:n Kauniit ja rohkeat -sarjassa Sally Spectraa esittänyt Darlene Conley on kuollut. Conley, 72, menehtyi vatsasyöpään sunnuntaina Los Angelesissa.)
Sally has always been my favourite character in the B&B. She is a ruthless business woman, cunning and conniving owner of Spectra fashions. Often she was a little too much to handle.
This brings me a lot of memories. The B&B was the real soap opera in Finnish TV. As a real soap opera I mean a show that came from TV 5 days a week and not just once a week. When B&B first started I remember how quiet it was in the grocery store at 6 or half past 6. (I can't really remeber the time).
Nobody was there, every single female was at home watching the B&B. Including my mother, my grandmother and my grandmother's sister. Sometimes it united the three generations together in front of the TV set.
My grandmother really liked the show and so did her sister Armi. We often discussed about the plot or the characters with them. Like Sally, they secretly admired Eric Forrester.
It is so strange to think that they are all gone now, my grandmother, her sister and even Darlene, who played the much hated and loved Sally.
People write about Sally:
- Dana: We'll miss you Darlene
- Elisa: Farewell Sally!!!
- Medis: Sally Elää
-The Sleeper: Sally on kuollut
- Handis: "Sally Spectra" kuoli
I'm going to list all the countries I have visited during 2005 and 2006. Then I will find a nice blog from each country and try to comment it.
How does that sound?
well, let's see.
2005: I went in springtime to Saarenmaa, Estonia. I spent my summer holiday in Provence and Languedoc, France and then in October I spent a week in Lisbon, Portugal.
2006: I went briefly in summer to Estonia (Tallinn, Viljadi), Latvia and Lithuania (Nida). Then I spent 3 months in Ithaca, NY,USA. In December I went to a business trip in Sweden.
1. Estonia (Viro): Stseene magamistoast. She is quite funny and writes in Estonian:
"Ma pesin just nüüdsama hambaid - kolmveerand kolm öösel ja neli minutit. Braavo! Rekord. Küll mu hambaarst rõõmustaks (aga ma ei käi tal külas, nii et see saavutus jääb nimetamata)."
2. France (Ranska): Tribulations d'un entrepreneur Jean-Hubert writes about being an entrepreneur in Paris, France. His business is real estate. He usually keeps his posting rather short. No wonder, because being an entrepreneur doesn't leave you with much extra time. He writes in French:
"Suite à l’achat d’un appartement en 2002, j’ai commencé à m’intéresser au secteur de l’immobilier, tant dans ses tendances que dans ses métiers et activités connexes."
3. Portugal (Portugali): Phronesis Bev lives in Setubal, Portugal and writes in English about living with two languages.
" I chose to live here - not because I'm retired, nor for the golf or the cheap beer (although I do appreciate the price of good wine). And it's not because I was looking for low-salaried work that no-one else wants to do. And no, I didn't come because I fell in love with a Portuguese guy."
4. Latvia: Juris writes about mobile phones and telecom industry in Latvia. Not so surprisingly, the blog is called Telecoms in Latvia. He seems to know the latest rumours.
He writes in English: "Anyway, according to news reports, the most desired Christmas present this year in Latvia was a mobile phone."
5. Lithuania (Liettua): Tomas has a lot of artwork in his blog called Captain's bridge. The blog is written in English.
He says: "The nature creates the metaphors that are incredible rich with insights into the mystery of our inner world that shapes everything we see or handle."
6. NY state, USA: I chose a blog from Ithaca, NY. Jenna, a sorority girl at Cornell writes about her life in the semi-official Cornell student blog. The blog is called "Oh no she didn't".
Jenna writes things like this:
"Oh, frat guy. Pretty sweet deal until you treat him badly and you are never allowed in the door of any of their parties again, and you can pretty much forget about his cute friend."
7. Sweden: Lycklig.org Pernilla writes about life and her son Theo and her dog called Biggles. She writes in Swedish:
Which wasn't always that fun. It never worked inside big buildings in Ithaca. Neither did it work any where in the countryside near Ithaca. It did, however, work very well in New York City.
Well, now the AT&T has told that Cingular ceases to be.
Vanishes all together and is replaced by AT&T.
New York Times says following: " One of the biggest “de-brandings” in advertising history is to begin Monday when AT&T starts changing all Cingular marketing to adopt the AT&T name."
Something about the subject in Finnish from Digitoday. I was a little bit ahead, I must say.
I registred me and my husband for an Estonian language course. We both speak a little bit Estonian, thanks to our 10 month stay in Tallinn (1998-1999). I'm really looking forward to this. We have been a little bit worried - our Estonian language skills have been gradually deteriorating. For this reason it's good to continue learning the language.
Estonian and Finnish are quite close to each other. In this sense it's fairly easy to learn the language, but the language has nevertheless its own tricks. One feature is the problem words "pulmasõnad". It can be that there's a same word in both languages, but the meaning is very different. Like Estonian word "pulmad" (d's are pronounced as t's) and Finnish word "pulmat". In Estonian the word means "wedding" and in Finnish "problems".
Other interesting word is "hallitus" - in Estonian it means "mold" and in Finnish "government". In Estonian blue cheese is for example "sinihallitusjuust", in Finnish it would be "sinihomejuusto".
If we are going to make progress in this course, I would think that we could reward ourselves with a weekend trip to Tallinn.
I had a relative who lived there since the beginning of the century until his death in 1950's. He was called Andrew Nelson (Antti Pitkämäki). He was my grandmom's uncle and he worked in the construction business. He had a wife Amanda and a son called Frank E. Nelson. Frank was an insurance guy. They were active members of Finnish congregation in Chicago. I checked from the Census records, that they had lived in 334 West 79th Street (1910) and Albany Avenue (1930) in Chicago. He never visited Finland again. My grandparents invited him to come to the Helsinki Olympic Games in 1952, but he answered that he was too old. It would be fun to know more about him, but unfortunately his son is dead and didn't have any children. I found Andrew's obituary in Siirtokansan kalenteri.
I have actually been to Chicago myself as well. Or actually I have been in the airport. That's not really Chicago, isn't it? I quess the closest we get to Chicago here in Finland is by watching the ER.