Wednesday, September 9, 2015


Braucu uz mežu nogaršot mellenes - jā, pārsvarā tagad mellenes jau pārāk ūdeņainas. Bet brūklenes - tik garšīgas, tādiem ķekariem, tik skaistas ogas!
Salasīju litru un iesaldēju. Interesanti, ka tai meža izcirtumā, kur ir visvairāk saules, brūklenes vēl nav īsti gatavas. Taču mazliet ēnainākā vietā, starp stiprām, garām priedēm un mellenājiem - tik saldas un gatavas ogas.
Ir viena maģiska siera kūka, kuras recepti es atradu sen, vienā Kanādiešu žurnālā. Paklausieties nosaukumu - "Red berry chocolate cheesecake", Sarkano ogu šokolādes siera kūka. Tur tieši vajag brūklenes. Gabalu tādas siera kūkas ar kūpošu kafijas krūzi dzimšanas dienā vai Ziemassvētkos - tie ir svētki.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Last day of August

It's such a beautiful, delicious time of year. This year, the leaves have  not started to turn yet. I look at the maple tree outside, still so dark green, and think, it's only a matter of days now, and before long I'll be looking out at its leaves all golden, shimmering with morning frost, magic.
This is that time of year when it's not unusual to get stuck driving slowly behind a tractor. Almost every day you can see a tractor or some other big harvest machine out in the fields, working, and it makes me so happy to somehow be in the middle of it, even if I'm just driving along a field.
The colors and textures in the picture above make me wish for a second that I could create a room in those colors, with such plush and fluffy pillows, some reddish-brown fabrics, some muted purple that meets dark green like the thistle heads. There is so much beauty to take in right now. The fields are so golden, and along those golden edges, there are such beautiful pops of color.
August nature, you've been beautiful.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Cepts cukini un tomāti, lai ātri papildinātu maltīti

Ļoti vienkāršs un ātrs veids, kā papildināt "bēšu" maltīti un uzturā iekļaut vairāk dārzeņu.
čili garšvielu skaidiņas (chili flakes), ja ir vēlēšanās

Darba secība:
Pannā uzsilda nedaudz olīveļļas un pieber čili skaidiņas, pakarsē.
Nomazgā cukini un tomātus. Cukini sagriež mazos kubiciņos un liek cepties, ik pa laikam apmaisa.
Tikmēr sagriež gabaliņos tomātus, tad liek uz pannas pie cukini.
Sautē, cik ilgi pats grib. Pieber drusciņ sāli, piparus, un gatavs.

Liek klāt visam, kam grib, piemēram makaroniem, kā bildē, vai ēd tāpat.
Man ļoti patīk, ka čili skaidiņas dod tādu labu asumu.

Friday, August 21, 2015

This year's first tomatoes

Here's this year's first tomato harvest from a couple of days ago:
two Golden Bumble Bee cherry tomatoes, and two Yellow Pearshaped tomatoes.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Meanwhile, in the woods

Here's a little update on what's happening out in the woods:

there are still quite many wild strawberries to eat, and it looks like this will be a great year for blueberries. There are so many blueberries already, they just need to get sweeter. I also found this juniper bush.
So far, it's been a pretty cold summer, but I love all the light that summer brings. For the past two days, the winds have felt a lot milder, and it's been so nice to go for little strolls around the neighborhood. The light and being outside. Good things.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Thrifting score

A lovely afternoon yesterday at Lata Pigan ("The Lazy Maid"), a flea market with an amazing collection of vintage fabrics. Also, very exciting, I found a round mirror for my "office"! More on the mirror below, first some beautiful patterns.
Just like last year, seeing all this pretty fabric at Lata Pigan I was thinking, I'm kind of glad I don't know how to sew, otherwise I would be tempted to get so many of these beauties. 
The idea is that one day, I will learn to use a sewing machine, but until then, I will put my time and energy into more pressing projects. So, I practiced discipline (while still having a lot of fun admiring these beautiful prints).
Look at this round coffee table, and its seamless, flow-y looking legs!
Here's a piece of the top surface (I didn't think to clear the table off to take a picture, but you still get an idea of what the table top looks like) -
For the right room, this coffee table would be so gorgeous, right?
And now, are you ready? I found a large-ish round mirror that will be a little DIY project! I've been pinning rooms with a large, round mirror for a while now, and I know exactly where I want this mirror - in my little "office", above the dresser.
The frame of this mirror is plastic, and I'm planning to paint the frame either very dark brown (like the dresser the mirror is propped against), or maybe a gold-ish "champagne" color. I'm thinking maybe spray paint it, or paint it with a brush, depending on what paint color I find. So excited!
I paid 200 SEK (approx.21 EUR / $23) for the mirror. The frame has one crack, but I figure it will be easy to fix. The mirror itself seems to be in very good condition. For 200 crowns, I think it's a great deal for this size.
I went through the pictures from my trip to Lata Pigan last year, and look who it is hanging on the wall - my mirror!
See, it's a good size. This idea will work.

Here is last year's trip to Lata Pigan. The post is mostly in Latvian, but there are pictures.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Looking up: Latvia trip, July 2015

One of the best life tips I've ever heard that's actually stuck with me is
"look up!".
It was a tip on how to quickly regain balance when you're feeling challenged, and it's part of being in the moment and being mindful. "When it's hard, look up! Take a look at what is up there. Are there clouds? If you're inside, what's the ceiling made of?"
I now look up out of curiosity. I look up because it's neat. You notice a lot more. These are some of my favorite "look up!" (or "look around! Take it all in!") moments form my Latvia trip.

Here is another Latvia trip, to the Slow Mile beach at the Kemeri National Park.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Mozzarella snack

It may be cold and windy out, but it is June, so, technically, it is summer.
Here is some mozzarella with tomato and basil and avocado, salt and pepper, and rapeseed oil. The flower is just for show.

Happy Monday!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Pieliekamais - 2

Pieliekamais turns two years old today -
yay for May and all good new things to come!

Thank you for your time!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tulpe uz balkona

Izdomāju pārbīdīt puķupodus ar tulpju asniem, lai būtu nedaudz aizvējā. Būs mazāk saules, bet tad vējš tik traki neplucinās tulpju lapas. Ko es ieraudzīju -
ievīstītu lapās, pirmo ziediņu!

Paldies, ka ieskatījies Pieliekamajā!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Everything outside is changing by the hour. Spring is here.
Above, some hepatica flowers with early morning frost. Below, how is it possible that a tree that fell three years ago has these yellow fuzzies? I looked at the whole tree, and saw that
there are new stems coming from the old trunk almost the length of the tree (the part that's on the ground). So apparently the tree is still alive and gets energy and nutrition through the trunk/soil.
Next up we have a vinbär bush with first leaves unfolding (below). This particular bush grows in a very sunny and quite shielded area. I visit another vinbär bush almost daily in a more open/windy area, and there are no green leaves there (yet).
Back to the woods, the first buds of wild rose leaves are emerging, and today in the midday sun they looked pistachio-green.
To conclude, some new lupine plants (below). I took the chance a few days ago to wander farther into what is an overgrown wild area during summertime. Right now this wild meadow is still quite bare, so I went exploring. I found tiny lupine leaves with what seemed like dew in some of the "cups".
Look at the fuzzy little lupine bud in the lower part of the picture, below.
I also found a big patch of snowdrops in a new to me location (behind a wild apple tree), and the first wild strawberry leaves have emerged since at least a week ago. So things are definitely happening! Thank you for coming on this nature walk with me.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Pirmaas atraitnites 2015

I just couldn't resist any more -
and I discovered that my lavender plant from last year is still alive. How is it even possible? The last time I watered that pot was maybe back in October. Yet there they were, silvery green new leaves on the dried up (I thought) stems.

You can see parts of the lavender plant towards the back of the pot, the branches looking like thyme.

Planting those first spring flowers is one of my absolutely favorite things, ever.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Tulpes uz balkona

I've gotten this far -
this is one of my three pots with tulip bulbs. I'm not holding my breath for tulip blooms yet as it can be super windy out on the balcony, but who knows.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Air Pockets Worked!

Remember my tulip-bulb insulation project back in December? Today, when I removed the top insulation packs to take a peek, I found tulip sprouts in two of the three pots! The air pockets worked! I am so happy. The only pot where there were no sprouts (yet?) was the clay one, which was exposed to the elements the most. Instead of taking pictures of the tulip sprouts, I went to the woods where I saw the first butterfly (yellow), a ladybug, and the first hepatica flowers of this year.
I didn't expect to find these little beauties for another month! And how happy am I that our friend the sweet-natured spaniel decided to join us on our trek (that's his paw in the picture). He was saying, "OK, what are we excited about here?"
I checked the weather prognosis, and it doesn't seem like we'll get minus degrees (C) for a couple of nights, so I left the flowerpots on the balcony uncovered. Imagine if I'm really going to get blooming tulips on my balcony?
Spring is here :).
Oh, I also ordered some seeds! Will share when the package gets here.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Power snack: avocado and almonds

According to some study, people who ate half an avocado for lunch stayed sated longer, or something like that. In my quest to eat for endurance, energy, and grace,
I've embraced these findings, and am trying to eat more avocado. Does it work? I think so. With avocado, I can be hungry as opposed to extremely hungry by lunchtime. In these pictures, I am trying a cottage cheese/curd/yogurt type of dairy product (kvarg in Swedish) that is currently very trendy in Sweden. What works best for me is
avocado with my hard bread sandwiches, and then in the afternoon, almonds with raisins, sometimes with kvarg.

Have I peeled a (washed) avocado on the train? Yes, I have.

Have I brought real silverware with me on the train? Yes, of course.

If I make a huge pasta salad, and eat only some of it for lunch, I'm so happy to have some extra food (that I made, for me) to tie me over until dinner on my ride home. Besides the environmental issue of sparing the world one more plastic fork that had to be produced and that I am most likely going to throw away un-recycled, I like using my favorite (real) fork.

So. Try some avocado, and use some of your favorite things more often.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Happiest Yellow

One of the happiest yellow colors I know is the color of postal trucks (and carts, and trains) in Sweden. Every time I see that "egg yolk stirred with sugar" shade, I get happy. Every time I see that

yellow truck or cart, I think, "something good is going to happen today. Something very good is coming my way." (See the long, yellow train in the picture?)
The building in the picture is called Tomteboda, and it's a mail sorting facility in Stockholm, Sweden. I just love how the morning sun is hitting the building in this picture, currently one of my favorite buildings to look at.
I don't know much about steam punk, but to me, this is a steam punk-sy building. It reminds me of an art exhibit by Shaun Tan that I saw very quickly last autumn
(it was during Culture Night and I did not know that the exhibit was on, hence only a super quick look).  The piece above is called "The Tuesday Afternoon Reading Group".
Look at the chimneys behind the portrait! I see two buildings, plus Tomteboda, that look almost like that on my train ride.
The happiest yellow, and a dog.

When the skies are gray, it helps to see the happiest of yellows, and to think, "something very good is coming my way soon". Give it a try.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

First snowdrops of 2015

Finally! I had been looking for snowdrops in the forest (near a farm) twice already, and finally today, here they are! (There will be a metaphor about searching for something at the end of this post.)
The temperature has been fluctuating from +4C during daytime (and probably a lot more in sunny spots) to minus 2C early in the morning. The last time I looked for the snowdrops a few days ago, there was still some snow in that part of the woods, and no snowdrops to be seen. That same day though, I noticed that the muscari bulbs near my parking spot had started to sprout!
Really? Here I had been going to the woods and walking the icy path to that one spot where I knew the snowdrops are, and nothing. Meanwhile, the muscari (known in Sweden as "pearl hyacinths", and I also learned the name "grape hyacinths" today) were growing right here, in front of my eyes.

Now for the metaphor:
It is interesting to think that that the answer we are looking for might already be here, right in front of us. Not a journey away, not in that one book that if I just bought it and read it I'm sure it would give me an answer. (For the record, I am all for books, and books do contain many good answers, and questions.)

Back to my pearl hyacinths, I suspect that a bunny or two have been munching on the new buds. So I sprinkled some red hot chili flakes on the buds - a tip I read somewhere. I hope this harms no one.

Ahh, spring is here.

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Fenheļa-avokado salāti ar greipfrūtu / Mīlestības salāti

According to some statistic, most people will not get a romantic present on Valentine's Day. So instead of trying to figure out your feelings about Valentine's Day, "turn the steak around" (Swedish expression) and
give your loving attention to someone this Valentine's Day. Your kid, your dog, your awesome relative that always comes through for you (but what have you done for them lately?).
To celebrate you, your body, and the fact that it was still pretty light out yesterday at 5 pm (I could not believe it!), here is a delicious and pretty salad (recepte zemāk būs latviski). This fennel-avocado salad with grapefruit is also part of my 2015 foodie resolutions to make one new sweet and one new salty dish a month (so this is January's "salty", a bit belated).
1 fenhelis
2 avokado
dažas greipfrūta daiviņas
sāls (skaisti būs ar sāls skaidiņām)
Darba secība:
Pannā izkausē sviesta piku (jo vairāk sviesta, jo garšīgāk).
Noskalo fenheli un nogriež tam "artērijas" ("zarus", kas aug no sīpola) un ja ir kāds nesmukums, nogriež arī to. Sagriež fenheļa skaisto sīpolu ("sirdi") daiviņās vai strēmelēs, kā pats grib, un apcep sviestā, lai fenhelis kļūst mīksts un nedaudz zeltains.
Nomizo un sagriež avokado.
Nomizo dažas greipfrūta daiviņas, lai būtu bez baltās mizas (kā bildē).
Visu kārto uz šķīvja, apslaka ar olīveļļu un pārkaisa ar drusciņ sāli (jo ļoti viegli uzbērt par daudz).
Greipfrūts ir vairāk skaistumam un mazam garšas akcentam, tāpēc labāk mazāk nekā vairāk. Lūdzu, es varētu šos salātus ēst katru dienu.
Receptes ideja no žurnāla Buffé, 2015.gada 1.numura, 15.lpp. Tur arī padoms, ka šie salāti brīnišķīgi piestāv pie laša - nu protams! Krāsnī cepts lasis ir Pieliekamā vispopulārākā recepte. Kamēr lasis savā nodabā cepas krāsnī, var sataisīt šos salātus, un vakariņas gatavas.
Lai izdodas!
Paldies, ka ieskatījies Pieliekamajā!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The One (Cake) Decorating Secret I Learned in France - and How You Can Use It for Valentine's Day

Not that it was very secret, but I first noticed this combination in Paris many years ago, and it stuck - for a happy, bright cake (or pastry), decorate with
strawberries and pistachio nuts. So pretty!

This is a birthday cake I made for a friend a long time ago, and the letter candles spell out "Congratulations!" in Swedish.

Have a beautiful day!

Thank you for stopping by Pieliekamais!