Living room angles

4 05 2013

8 months after we moved into our new home, and it is starting to become presentable… There are still a couple of corners of shame (skamvråar) with boxes which haven’t been unpacked (papers and shoes…) and we still don’t have an oven or kitchen cupboard doors. Here are two views of our living room (the dining part is at the front of the room by the windows and the balcony):

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Yes, one of those corners with boxes… The big book case in the middle is from Puerto Rico and we tried to give it a built-in look with Ikea Billy shelves around it. The leather armchairs are also from Puerto Rico and the armchair to the left is my grandmother’s and should be in V’s room but is currently hiding the hole from the partly removed fireplace (to stop V from climbing into the hole which is not too clean…). We still have to decide what to do about the fireplace. We think that you are not allowed to use it so we might put in a fake fireplace? The carpet is from my grandfather and has a label stating that it is from Iran!

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Another living room angle, with my grandmother’s cupboard (her brother made it for my grandparents when they got married in the late 1940’s), her Tandberg radio (V loves to push the buttons and turn up the volume…) and the foot stool that belongs to the armchair plus a picture that O got from his colleagues when leaving Puerto Rico.

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And this is what it looked like last summer… Before and after the demolition of the fireplace, and polishing of the wooden floor!

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My Blue Plates

25 01 2013

Slowly unpacking the last boxes, and an old suitcase from my grandmother’s where I put a few favourites for O to bring back to Brussels by car after the holidays. Here are some of my treasures, my blue plates:

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From left, clockwise: “Mother’s day 1975” (flea market find, 2012), “Christmas 1975” from Royal Copenhagen (my parents’), Swedish king & queen wedding 1976 (sister’s flea market find, birthday present), from Alhambra, Grenada (present from my parents when visiting my sister who studied in Grenada), Danish plate (flea market find, 2012).

I have kept a similar plate to the last one (“Danish”) from my grandfather’s, that’s actually why I bought it because it reminded me of my paternal grandparents.

So, what do I do with the plates? I would really like to hang them on the wall, but O is not in favour of this idea. I know that it might sound old-fashioned with plates on the wall but I assure you that it is back in fashion 🙂 I remember that we used to have blue and white “year-plates” on the wall when I was a child but those were all matching. The “new” thing is to hang random plates in an asymmetrical pattern on the wall. Or maybe I just use them for serving / eating?





Something for the walls

10 11 2012

I like my walls to be white but not bare! In other words, I like to decorate the walls with pictures, photos and posters. At the moment I am slowly getting frames for all the pictures and posters that I have been collecting over the years. Yesterday I showed O where I want to put the old maps that we bought in London in 2006 (?): maps of Spain, the south of Sweden, the Caribbean and Belgium (see the theme here?) but before we can put them up, I need to find frames for them.

This is one piece of art (signed and numbered) that I bought a few months ago. I first saw it in the Swedish magazine Family Living, in a photo from the tv-presenter, author and blogger Ebba von Sydow’s home, and then another blogger, Weronica, showed it from her home and that’s how I found out the name of the artist, Stina Wirsén. She has actually made some quirky children’s books that V really likes. I love the simple lines of the drawing, and ordered it from the great Swedish art web-site called Wonderwall.

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Stina Wirsén’s Baby will hang above our bed eventually

We are also going to have some original art on our walls from my grandparents’ homes, but those paintings need to be brought from Sweden first…





The messy everyday life

30 10 2012

I don’t know how it looks in your home during the day but even though I tidy up every evening, a certain small family member has a tendency to make a huge mess as soon as he gets up!

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More or less tidy, at least the floor. The dining table is full of stuff to be organised, and all those boxes, sigh… As we haven’t found any nice chairs that we like, we have kept the blue & green chairs which are supposed to be painted white. O inherited them from a friend who moved to Australia a long time ago. The carpet underneath the table is too small and should really be somewhere else (by the not-yet-bought sofa maybe?).

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I really hate having the laundry drying in the middle of the room, especially as V likes to remove the clothes from the rack…

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Here he is walking around with two of my socks (clean!) (as I write this he’s throwing one of my knickers around – clean but not yet dry!)

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V’s favourite spot! And yes, he usually wears trousers but he was too busy to let me finish dressing him 😉

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This is what I am talking about! Recycling on the floor (it will eventually, hopefully, be placed in the drawer under the sink when we have moved the cleaning products to a wall cabinet in the toilet!)… I let V play with it while I was trying to cook!

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The stew (kalops!) I was making while trying to entertain V at the same time…





My great-grandmother’s chair and the plans for the week

21 10 2012

V and I are now alone in Brussels, O has just left on a business trip to Puerto Rico, New Jersey and Atlanta (all in 5 days). It’s the first time that I will be alone with V for that long, and I am a bit worried about getting V to the creche (opens at 7.45), picking him up in the afternoons (closes at 18) and working 7,5 hours per day as it takes me more than an hour in total to get to the creche, and then to the office.

That is one of the reasons why I have decided to take an extended November break (1st and 2nd November are holidays for the staff of the European Institutions in Brussels) so my holidays start already on Thursday. And we are not staying in Brussels, but going to Provence in the south of France to visit my dear friend L who lives there with her French boyfriend and 2-year old daugther T. We are taking the TGV, the high-speed train, from Brussels to Marseille, which takes 5 hours. The only thing that I am not looking forward to is the trip to the train station in the centre at 05.40 in the morning on Thursday (the metro starts running at 05.40) with a child, a pram and big backpack (the escalators at the metro station where we have to change metro line didn’t work on Friday…). Wish us luck!

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You usually say that when a child is quiet, he or she is up to no good… Well, V is usually “reading” his books when I don’t hear from him!

Here’s another of my small projects, an extremely quick and simple project really: change the cover of my great-grandmother’s chair! I inherited the chair and the “sewing table” from my father’s maternal grandmother Anna when she passed away in 1989. I think that it was her own decision that I should get the furniture set but I might be wrong. I also got some cutlery (“alpacka” / nysilver) with P engraved (P for Persson, but as nobody in the family has that family name anymore, my grandparents thought that the silverware should go to me) and a xmas decoration in shape of a church that lits up and plays “Silent night” (I actually got it already when she moved to the retirement home, and I absolutely loved it as a child).

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The chair with the original cover

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The chair actually got a new cover already in 2000 but it was stained and I was bored of it…

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The chair with its new cover, the classical elephant fabric from Svenskt Tenn. I just pinned it to the bottom of the seat with three pins. So far we have been lucky with V not really realising that he could play in the fireplace but we really need to get a more permanent solution to cover it than just a chair in front of it…

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And here’s the “sewing table”, which hasn’t found its final location yet.

Have a nice Sunday! Brussels is foggy today and I need to clean the apartment while V will be playing with his babysitter.





The pink bathroom

18 10 2012

As I realised that I didn’t show that much of the renovation in the previous post, I thought that I could show you our bathroom. It got a quick fix, just some white paint, the sink changed place and a new shower head and hose. We are still considering whether or not to change the tiles eventually. The floor is quite ugly with holes in the tiles, and the colour makes them look dirty.

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The original bathroom

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During the renovation

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I was so excited when we got the washing machine which shows how much time there is left on the cycle (which reminds me that there’s a finished load in the machine at the moment…). The shower curtain is from Ikea and I might not have chosen it for another bathroom but I thought that it went well with the pink tiles.

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Ta-da, the bathroom with a bathroom cabinet and mirror! We are still lacking storage above the washing machine (we’ve bought a kitchen cupboard that needs to be attached to the wall), a lamp (it’s a bare light bulb at the moment) and we might get a new sink with storage underneath.

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This is O’s old stereo furniture that I am planning to paint white. It’s not so practical for stuff that need to be put out of V’s reach so we definitely need the storage above the washing machine.





Photos from a renovation…

17 10 2012

I’m back! We finally got internet at home today! To celebrate, I will show you some photos from our on-going apartment renovation before I should go to bed.

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Daddy’s little helper… Everything takes just a bit longer when you have a 1-year old who wants to help!

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The wardrobe before it was filled with clothes – and now what do we do with all the rest? Waiting for V’s room to be renovated so that we can put a wardrobe there as well (we have too much clothes! but I still have nothing to wear, hm)

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I improvised a kitchen curtain last week, a tea towel from Ikea! I am quite pleased with my “project” of framing rice and coffee packages from Puerto Rico

The rest of the apartment will be shown another day!