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Sunday Treat: DIY Coffee Mask

Every now and than I try to remind myself to make a DIY mask and take care of my face skin. Especially now after the strong sun effect. Here is one of my masks that I recommend and I usually use coconut oil in it. A good face yoga after the mask would be also a good bounoce! Enjoy! 

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Comfort Food: 5 Winter Recipes

Back from Los Angeles

Julia and I went on a trip alone to visit my cousin & another friend in Los Angeles for a week. We had such a great time and I managed to spend some good quality time both exploring L.A and catching up with my culture.  

We went to Disney, Downtown L.A, Beverly Hills, Malibu, Griffin inventory, Griffith Park, Santa Monica Pier, Grauman's Chinese Theatre, Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood Boulevard, Rodeo Drive. 

I made sure to eat the sushi in California, donats, and good burgers! On our last night in L.A we had a farewell dinner me and my people in a Mediterranian restaurant with belly dance show and DJ and live band entertainment. It's not possible to eat in nice restaurants if you are accompanied by kids. So we had to stick to dinners and casual places since my cousin had two small kids of her own. 

The weather was fantastic, just like Swedish summer as it rained sometimes. I was amazed by the L.A peoples driving but on my stop in NYC I discovered they were a lot better for the American standard. 

I am differently coming back again and next time I want to do (without children) activities, such as visiting museums, studios and California adventure and more... Becuase there is still a lot to see, explore and try. 

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Martinique: The good, the bad and what is in between

Here is a quick sumary about what to expcet when you are planing to visit Martinique Island. Before we come here I had no idea what being here is like even that I read lots of blogs and articules. Most of those articules they only tell about the actvities and sight seeing tips but not the rest of the details. Here I tried to remember most of the things I discovred and gone thought since we came here: 

Tempruture: The weather is great and it got even better now since we got here. During the end of October and November, the humidity was very very high, and it rained often without any warning. Its often around 30 - 26 c. I recommend doing outdoor activities before noon or after 15:00 if you know you will be away from shade and ac. When you go out always be prepared that it can rain anytime. 

Beach: Every beach has its own charm. For us, as a family with a toddler, we try to go to beaches that are safer, calmer and closer to home in case it rained. In our area Les Trois-Îlets there are two beaches we usually go to, the one nearby the ferry and another one next to hotel Bakoua. Sometimes we go to Le Salines beach when we arrange families get together with the rest of the Norwegian Crew families. Diment beach is good too, but the waves are too high and dangerous for kids. Le Diamant and Le saline beaches has shade because there are lots of trees, the only problem is when you sit another trees expect sand ants and coconut falling... and what not..

Food and service: This was our biggest disappointment in the island. Food quality and food sources are limited. Especially if you are used to good international cooking, its hard to find certain ingredients and if you did it's often too expensive. Eating outside in restaurants is even worst, you might pay a lot for a decent basic meal and end up not satisfied. We had lots of disappointments where evem meat was raw. The same with service, It often takes too long for drinks and food to come. Service is very lazy and laid back. Everything is pricey including seafood. Except local goods like fruits and vegetables. 

People and culture: Local people are very friendly, often minding their own business. They give a hand if you need help especially when I am with my toddler outside by myself. The French native people where not that friendly especially if you spoke English with them. They do not even try to explain or use English words. I was told its a competitive policy to get people to learn french and become more international like English culture. Personally I think this policy makes me not wanting to learn / use my basic french anymore. 

Wild life: Since I got here, Ive seen lots of bugs and strange plants. I got a visit by a Centipedes in the middle of our living room as I was packing, It was disgusting and scary I kept itching my body whole night that night. Ive seen big crabs hanging out in the sewer. Seen lots of cute colorful lizards and worms. And at night I saw those light bugs that I only thought exist in fairy tales. They make the night seem magical. Mosquitoes and sand ants are uncontrolable and there is also a Sand worm that can enter your skin while sunbathing which one should be careful about. Be prepared for the very loud cricket insect sounds if you ever visit Martinique. 

Accommodation: If you are looking for affordable accommodation in a good location do not count on having a good standard rental. As for us since we were looking for a long term rental, it was not an easy task finding a good one. We lived in two different basic small rentals until we found our final accommodation for the rest of the period. I recommend booking very early to find something good with a decent price. Each accommodation we lived in had its good and bad. The worst thing was electricity limitation, garden wild bugs, but all of them were in good location only about 5 mints to the beach and everything else.

Getting around: Les Trois-Îlets and Le Diamant are one of the good places to stay at. Renting a car is a must since most of the food/shopping areas are in Fort De France (downtown). If you want to do sightseeing and exploring the island public transport is not recommended. I suggest you live somewhere where there are some shops and restaurants in case you do not intend to drive here.

To be continued..

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After Holiday / NY Liver Cleanse

Cleansing your liver for the new year should be one of the 2018 resolutions. Your liver is what you might call the laboratory of the body. Many complex chemicals take place there that ensure your survival each and every day. After eating lots of holiday fatting foods and new years eve party snacks and drinks, it's currently time to start a good year with a fresh healthier liver. I recommend do this for 7 days in a row and you will currently feel the effect. I started with mine already from day 1. 

Your liver breaks down the toxins that you encounter, consume, and produce. Unfortunately, in today’s society, we are inundated with toxic chemical substances in the air, water, and even in our food, and we often make the problem worse with our prescription and over the counter medications, an improper diet, and lack of sleep. Your liver cleans and purifies the blood, removing all toxins and waste products. When your liver is overburdened, it doesn’t do that as effectively as it could, which leaves you feeling bloated and tired. It’s no wonder that cleansing and detoxifying our overworked and overburdened liver is vital for the recovery of our organs and allows us to live a life free from chronic disease.

Follow this procedure for preparing and using the raisins for your liver cleanse:

1. Take one-half cup of raisins and cover them with hot water for 15 minutes.

2. Rinse the raisins with fresh, cool, running water.

3. Boil some more water, and then allow to cool until it is close to room temperature.

4. Place the raisins in jar or cup and cover them with the boiled water. Allow sitting for 24 hours.

5. In the morning, on an empty stomach, eat the raisins and drink the water they were soaking in.

6. Now lie down for one and a half to two hours with a hot water bottle on the right side of your abdomen.

Source: https://naturalon.com/
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2017 Achievements

It was such a great year even with its ups and downs. I managed to accomplish some of my milestones that were on hold. Wve been to many places and enjoyed lots of events and holidays together. We started 2017 surrounded by snow In the mountain cabin north Sweden, Julia was sick on our last New Years Eve and I did not quite enjoy it. This year we said goodbye to 2017 and welcomed 2018 in completely different temperatures, atmosphere and mind state. I am sure this is going to be my year! 

Here are some of the achieved goals and goodies of 2017 that I could remember:

- I lost pregnancy weight and managed to keep myself motivated for a workout routine doing Tabata cardio at home and treadmill running for at least 30 min every other day. See my treadmill workout here.

- Got my Swedish citizenship/passport. Which plays a big role in un-limiting my travel miles.

- Finally finally got my teeth braces. This one has been on my list for years and years and has been always delayed by work or other responsibilities at the time. I had to travel abroad to do them since they were ridiculously expensive in Sweden.

- Julia started her Kindergarten. And I got the time to accomplish some of the mentioned here.

- Traveled to: Canary Island again, Malaga twice, Greece for a week, Finland, Norway road trip, Estonia (back and forth) by boat, Danmark stop on our way to the Caribbean.

- I got my freaking SWISHISH DRIVING LICENCE (The driving theory is unbelievable including snow practice, alcohol road danger risks/lectures). This one has been on hold since 2015.

- I passed the Swedish language test with a good score allowed me to go further with my study and I started studying on distance part-time.

- Had a reunion with an old friend from Britain who came and visited me home in Sweden and such an amazing time talking nostalgic things about the country I grew up in where she used to work and live too.

- Planned and booked my first family/friends reunion for January which I can not wait for in the United States.

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