HELLO WORLD, as the customary blog greeting goes! I am Sinikka, a wife, mother, and English teacher from Finland. I have been blogging for teaching-related topics in my lost in translation blog for quite some time now. Yet, I felt I needed a forum for more personal stuff, and decided to set up this new blog. I will be sharing thoughts, feelings, photos and ideas that take my interest in the following two categories.
Being “over the hill”, in the later half of my life, certain topics are bound to come up: health, fitness, diet, weight, ageing, body image, to mention but a few. As the mother of a 20-something daughter, the “empty nest” syndrome still haunts me from time to time even though my darling girl has already been away, and overseas at that, for over four years. The new-found freedom with my husband, with whom I celebrated our Silver Wedding Anniversary just this autumn, sometimes poses us challenges – how are we to continue our life together when there’s just the two of us now?
Hobbies, and other personal interests will come under this heading, too. Nature photography has been one of my dear pastimes for years, and living up here in the north, there are plenty of opportunities for observing the changing seasons through my lens. I upload some of my photos on Flickr, and in 2011 I even had a blog for my ‘photo a day’ challenge. I will also post some of my favourite family recipes, mainly for my daughter to find, and hopefully, pass on.
Travelling has always been my passion, ever since I was brave enough at 15 to go on an EF language course in England, all on my own, from a small Finnish countryside village. Little did I know then that I would meet my British husband in the very same seaside town of Eastbourne, over ten years later when I went back as an EF course leader myself! I loved languages the moment I started learning them in 3rd grade, and having learnt the basics of not only English but also Swedish, French and German at school, the natural choice for me was to study languages at the university, and become a language teacher. Languages continue to fascinate me, and thanks to my bicultural family life, I have come to realise how interconnected language and culture are. Naturally, as a family, we have travelled back and forth between Finland and Britain, exploring the European countries in between.
My passion for languages and cultures has taken our family to the US for a year, where I worked as a Fulbright exchange teacher in Falls Church, Virginia. During that year, we took any opportunity to hit the road, and managed to visit as many as 40 of the 50 American states. What an eye-opener that year was! Back in Finland, I embarked on a 12-year-long quest to widen my students’ horizons in various intercultural projects and student exchanges. These years took me, my family and some students to many European countries, and finally also to Asia – a totally new continent for me. I could truly say that “the world is my oyster” (or maybe I should change this idiom into “the world is my green apple” as seafood really isn’t “my cup of tea”!)
And what do you know – seems that “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” in our family. Our daughter has become a real globetrotter herself. After graduating with a degree in International Relations and French from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland this year, she is now spending a gap year trying to find English teaching jobs in Taiwan of all places!
My bucket list of places to see is still growing by the day. So many continents and fabulous places for me to see and experience, hopefully!
November 3, 2014 at 9:50 am
Wow, that was great presentation!
November 3, 2014 at 2:18 pm
Cheers, thank you for reading 🙂
June 9, 2016 at 3:50 pm
Wonderful blog! look forward to reading many of your posts:)
June 12, 2016 at 1:55 pm
Thank you for your comment, welcome to read about Finland and also travelling in different places!
June 20, 2016 at 10:16 pm
I really enjoyed your introduction Sinikka. We have two sons in their twenties. The younger one also studied at a Scottish University, Edinburgh! I first visited Finland in 2006 on a short teacher exchange and fell in love with the country and way of life, so much so I’ve been back every summer since with my family who also share my love of everything Finnish!
June 21, 2016 at 8:50 pm
Thank you so much for your comment. We seem to have many things in common in our lives. Also nice to hear about your and your family’s interest in our country! Finland certainly is nice in the summer – welcome again!
June 21, 2016 at 6:10 pm
My daughter is a bit younger than yours but your story sounds true to me. Like mother, like daughter when it comes to globetrotting 😀
June 21, 2016 at 9:00 pm
I’m sure you are encouraging your daughter to see and experience the world, just as I’ve always done, Suvi. But there is the other side of the coin, too – missing her, and the frequent good-byes (usually in the middle of the night, at some station somewhere – a little hand waiving through a dark window…). But c’est la vie, and luckily with all the modern gizmos, keeping in touch is so easy these days. My girl is back for the summer now, after working in Taiwan for almost two years. Now applying for Master’s courses – and yes, you guessed it, not in Finland 😀
July 8, 2016 at 10:18 am
Very interesting, I feel an instant connection. My only daughter is 27 and just got married. We have had an empty nest for a few years now and we are enjoying our time together. We love to travel – my husband is from Berlin, Germany so we have traveled all over Europe (haven’t made it to Finland yet) and all over the U.S. We also took up hiking – which is what I mostly blog about – and kayaking. Also, we live in Virginia! I look forward to reading your blog.
July 8, 2016 at 2:35 pm
Hi there, I’m delighted to hear from you! Will check your blog later tonight. You should put Finland on your travelling agenda 🙂
July 10, 2016 at 9:31 am
I already mentioned it to my husband. We actually know where Turku is because we play a board game called Europarise – where you travel around Europe and Turku is one of the ports. Karen
July 10, 2016 at 10:48 am
Hi Karen, how interesting! Never heard of this game before. Surprised that our town features in it 🙂