Around here: 3-0.

At 3.34 in the morning on Saturday, exactly 30 years had passed since I was born, and thus my twenties came to an end. I'm still not sure how I feel about that... But, my birthday weekend was fun at least! The celebration started early with cake at work on Friday afternoon, made by my talented little sister. Everyone was so impressed and I can't say that I was sorry that I got to take home an entire left-over cake. On Saturday we had picnic by the sea for lunch, complete with pancakes and chocolate milkshake. In the evening we went out for dinner with the parents. Sunday's main event was one of my birthday gifts - I got to fly over Kalmar and Öland in a small airplane. I was so nervous beforehand and the entire experience was quite surreal, but so exciting too! I've wanted to see the area from above for a long time and I finally got to do it :) The celebration isn't over yet because my actual birthday party will be on the 20th of September, shared with Fanny who will be turning 20 in a month. I know I always say this, but I just can't believe how quickly time goes by!

Outings: Blå jungfrun.

On one of the most beautiful summer days this year we went on a daytrip to the uninhabited island of Blå jungfrun with some good friends. Visiting the mythical island had been on our respective to-do-lists for many years but somehow it hadn't worked out until now. I'd seen the island countless times from the mainland and from the island of Öland, and thought I had some idea about what it would be like. However, as it turned out the little hill in the distance didn't give away much about the islands secrets at all. For example, I imagined it to be much smaller and was surprised that we spent almost all our time on the island simply making our way around it. There was so much to discover, from the ancient stone labyrinth and the caves to the untouched dense forest... We had time to see the highlights but we could easily have spent several more hours there. At the end of the day we all agreed that it was the perfect summer day, what with the incredible weather and scenery. Definitely a place I wish to revisit some day.

Around here: Back from vacation.

And just like that my vacation ended and now the second week back at work is almost behind me. Since many of my co-workers are still on vacation those of us who're back are swamped so the days are flying by to say the least. At this rate I don't know when it'll feel like things are back to normal, especially since the second half of September is going to be very hectic for me what with my birthday celebration, training in Stockholm and one week of vacation abroad taking place in close succession.

I still have so many photos to share from my vacation that I hardly know where to begin, but I thought I'd work backwards and start with the photos I took on the final day of vacation and the ones I've taken since then. They're actually all from my iPhone, because I've sort of fallen back in love with Instagram. One day it hit me that the reason why I never posted on Instagram anymore was that I have grown sick of square photos, and so I downloaded Squaready and now I feel inspired to take photos with my phone again. Only goes to show that nothing is ever for certain; I remember when I first started using Instagram I looked down on those who just couldn't embrace the square format and insisted on uploading rectangular photos. It only took me three years to realize how right they were. It's just so refreshing to not have to ruin a great photo for the sake of Instagram anymore.

The first photo is from when we went swimming in the sea for the first time this year, on the final day of vacation. Since the heat took so long to get here this summer the water just didn't feel inviting enough to go swimming earlier, but on our last day of vacation we decided we just had to do it no matter how cold it'd be. It's wasn't too bad actually, but not nearly warm enough to stay in for more than a few minutes. Other than that I've taken most of these photos when we've gone for our regular evening walks. The weather has stayed beautiful since I've gone back to work so I've tried to make the most of it in the evenings. On Saturday we spent most of the day downtown cheering on the Ironman contestants. It was my first time watching and I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. We were only going to stop by for a little while but ended up staying out all day and then went back for Heroes Hour in the evening. Such a powerful experience.

Outings: Örarevet.

On a sunny day in early August we revisited the Örarevet nature reserve where we went for the first time in May. Few people seem to know about it even though it isn't that far away from the city. The area consists of a long thin peninsula that stretches out into the sea and it's a great place for hiking and having picnics, which is just what we did this time around. It's the recipe for a perfect summer day, if you ask me. I'm so excited that we discovered this little gem :)

Project Life: Going digital?

If there's anything I've learned in my twenties it's that nothing is set in stone, no matter how convinced I might feel. Ever since I first heard about digital Project Life, I've felt certain that it wasn't for me. I thought that I'd either do it the physical/hybrid way, or not at all, preferring to stick to my usual digital photobook templates. But, finishing my childhood albums left a void and I felt reluctant to return to my current memory keeping. For my childhood albums I didn't use any particular style; my focus was on getting them done and since they were about my childhood I wanted the spreads to be bright and colourful, childlike even. However, at the same time I love the look of the minimalist products by Liz Tamanaha, especially the products she designed for Project Life, and have dreamed of getting an opportunity to use them myself for years. If I'd had unlimited storage space and lived in a country where physical Project Life products were more readily available, I think I'd stop making photobooks in favour of physical Project Life albums straight away. As it is, it's not a viable option right now. And then I stumbled across the nifty digital page protectors by Valorie Wibbens and thought maybe... So I bought them and tried them out along with some digital Project Life products and I think it's a keeper?

Products used: The Midnight Edition core kit above and the Moments Like These kit below.

I'll try making a couple more spreads and see how I feel, but at the moment I think it's very likely that this will be what my 2015 photobook will look like.

Project Life is a memory keeping system created by Becky Higgins. You can learn more about it here.

Life lately: July 2015.

Watching | Most notably, Minions at the cinema. While I do think I prefer the Despicable Me films (they're the ones that introduced Minions into my life after all), it did not disappoint and I can't wait to see my favourite Minion scenes again. P and I have added quite a few Minionese words to our vocabulary and anyone who isn't familiar with those little yellow creatures would think we're super weird if they heard our conversations. Other than that, we watched the Danish TV show 1864 and concluded yet again that the Danes know how to make great TV.

Listening to | Lots of country music which is just perfect for roadtrips, which there were a lot of in July.

Consuming | Ice cream almost everyday, especially now that it's finally truly warm outside.

Reading | I actually read two books in July, which means I am now fully caught up with my book goal for 2015. I think I even might have finished a third at the beginning of the month - Britt-Marie var här by Fredrik Backman. It was so-so, and I was quite relieved when I'd got through it and was able to go to the library and stock up on some fresh summer reads. I stumbled across Shifting Colours by Fiona Sussman and it was one of the best books I've read lately, one that I can definitely recommend. Finally I read Åka skridskor i Warszawa by Emilia Degenius during our trip because it was the only book I had with me to read after finishing Shifting Colours. I would probably not have finished it if I'd had something else to read because it was quite terribly written, but as it was I persevered (had to occupy myself somehow on the ferry rides with no wifi access) and I am glad I did. It's not a book I'd recommend because it's so badly written (think long sentences without punctuation, too long paragraphs, stream-of-consciousness, confusing jumps back and forth between different periods of time etc), but the story was actually interesting, at least if you have a connection to Poland.

Visiting | The parents (I know I always say this), Cissi in Lund, Fanny at her new place.

Enjoying | Being on vacation!!!

Making | Not that much this month, but I did manage to get fairly up-to-date with updating this blog.

Looking forward to | Right now I kind of want the time to slow down/stop because we go back to work on Monday, but in a longer perspective I look forward to a trip I'll be going on in late September.

Project Life: Glimpses from 2000-2004.