Lykke, Kajsa and me

Happy Friday everyone!

Or as we have decided to say in our office, happy funky Friday!

Lykke, Kajsa and I are all super into oldies hits, and after playing plenty of "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees last Friday, we threw on one of Lykke's Spotify playlists this afternoon, and had a mini dance session before the work day was over! We'd had a product shoot this morning that went from 9:30am till 1:30pm, and once we got back to the office we were all a bit delirious from the heavy flash. It's a tough life, I know.

I'll post a few pictures from the shoot tomorrow of some that we already sell, but I had a few friends from Instagram message me this week saying how awesome my job seems and asking what my office is like. If you've been following along you'll know that I went from working at Tesla in the US, whose offices are made to look like insane asylums (no-offense Tesla, but throw some f*cking paint on the walls, and put some things on shelves), to an awesome spot on the island of Södermalm in Stockholm. I had always dreamed of working on this island, so when I landed this job in May I was ecstatic!

Our office houses two separate companies, and in total, we flex from 8-10 people which is great! It makes for a great work atmosphere, and we've got a wide spread of ages which makes for a healthy mix of opinions and views.

Here's where the team and I spend 40 hours a week!

My desk (and notes in the background)- if you worked with me at Tesla, you know what a big deal having a Mac at work is. Luckily, this is exactly like my personal Macbook Air I have at home!

View from the front of the office

Sankt Paulsgatan, which I walk along everyday to and from work

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Happy Thursday everyone!

I hope it's been a good week so far- mine certainly has been! (More on that later...)

Anyway, if you've been following along, I sometimes contribute articles to an online magazine called Harness, and they just published my latest article earlier this week. It's all about three distinct changes I've gone through since moving abroad this spring, so if you enjoy my writing, go check it out!

Feel free to shoot me a message with what you thought (good or bad), and definitely make sure read some of the other articles posted by some awesome women.

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Lykke and I / Magnus dancing to his DJ playlist!

Yesterday at around 3pm, my coworkers and I packed into our bosses little BMW convertible, and headed off for an event out on Djurgården. My bosses Magnus and Mimmi helped create a stunning rug last year, and this year it was back up on display at an event thrown by an art school in Stockholm. It also happens to be the school that Lykke, one of my coworkers, will be attending this upcoming fall (when she sadly leaves us!) and it was great to see where she'll be studying.

Kajsa and Lykke packed a few beautiful lanterns, bought some gorgeous flowers, and off we went to mingle for a bit while drinking a glass of champagne, and singing to Magnus' playlist in the car. He DJ'd at Way out West in Gothenburg last weekend, so naturally we've been blaring his "DJ Uncle Magnus" hits all week!

After we had finished mingling, Kajsa and I took the ferry back from Djurgården to Slussen, which is truly the best way to commute in Stockholm. I'd never taken that route, and it certainly will not be the last time- this city is it's most beautiful seen from the water!

Gröna Lund, seen on the ferry from Djurgården to Slussen

Great view of Gamla Stan (old town)

Packed in for the photo shoot this past May

The car ride from Södermalm reminded me of another similair car ride we had a few months ago when I first started at Skogsberg&Smart. We had a summer product shoot in a beautiful greenhouse on Lidingö, and we packed that convertible to the brim with everything from products, flowers, cakes, apple cider, and props- naturally the florist we got flowers from took a few shots of us trying to pile in!

I definitely lucked out with such a fun set of co-workers!

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This past Saturday, I was invited to attend a typical Swedish crayfish party or "Kräftskiva" as it's known here. My cousin's friend Charlotte throws one every year for her friends, and she was kind enough to invite me along this time (thanks, Charlotte!).

I picked up a few bottles of champagne on Saturday morning, got ready and put myself in an uber to meet my cousin Cornelia at her friend Michaela's apartment. We had a glass or two, took some pictures (make that MANY pictures) and eventually grabbed another uber from Årsta to central Stockholm.


Michaela, Cornelia and I

When we arrived, we were greeted with glasses of champagne in the courtyard that Charlotte had decorated, and after a few more photos with the group of girls, we sat down and got to the business of cracking open those crayfish.

Let me just say, no detail was spared! We were treated to various tubs of different style crayfish, multiple crusty baguettes and cheeses, quiche and fresh veggies that were passed around, and our glasses were refilled many a time. This being a Swedish party, many shots were taken, along with singing traditional drinking songs, and once we had eaten our fair share, we cleaned up and had a few more pre-drinks inside Charlotte's beautiful apartment!

Cornelia, testing out one of the many bottles of Champagne!

We called about another round of cabs and made our way to a popular spot in town, Mr. French. After ordering a few drinks (that we spiked with vodka we managed to smuggle in-shhh don't tell!) we made our way to the dance floor! I called it a relatively early night and made my way back to Liljeholmen to meet up with Josh before calling it a night.

Thanks for a great night ladies!

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After a fantastic Friday night with family, Cornelia and I met up at Gulmarsplan and walked towards Stureplan for Stockholm Pride. The walk took about an hour, and on the way we caught up on our travels over summer (mine to the states, hers to Italy for her birthday with her boyfriend Josef and Copenhagen with her friends) and just enjoyed seeing each other.

On the way, right next to the royal palace in Gamla Stan, we came across a promotional booth for Doritos and Mountain Dew (things we would never eat in real life) but grabbed samples of their new releases.

Now mind you, we are both wearing tight workout clothes, and walking around the nicer part of town carrying chips and soda...

Now that we are caught up on how ridiculous we looked, it was time for Stockholm Pride! What an event; I literally had goosebumps when certain groups walked past with duct tape over their mouths, and children and parents marched in the "proud to be..." segment. It was truly an incredibly experience, and it made me love and miss my best friend and family members who are apart of the LGBTQ community. There is a long ways to go when it comes to raising awareness, but over 540,000+ people participated in the crowds and parades, and I'd say that's a step in the right direction!

What was even more heartwarming was seeing so many government agencies in the parade with their employees, proving that Sweden is a great place for everyone to reside!

After the parade was over, Cornelia and I grabbed a late lunch at Joe&theJuice and then walked to Vasastan, where my friend Kels was almost done with work. Once she was off, the three of us grabbed a beer, stopped to pick up snacks, and then went to Cornelia's apartment for a full on ladies night.

Candy, chips and dip, cheese and crackers-the works. No calorie was spared, and we watched chick flicks till 1 am before Kels and I had a sleepover at my apartment. We also decided to start looking for an apartment to rent together, so stay tuned for that in the next month or so! I can't wait to move in with one of my best friends, hopefully somewhere close to my best friend since always, Cornelia!

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This past Friday night I got together with my cousin Cornelia, and my second cousin Amina. She texted Cornelia and I asking if we wanted to do something over the weekend, and naturally we said of course!

Cornelia made us reservations at Taverna Brillo on Östermalm, and I left work a bit early Friday afternoon to meet the two of them. We each got a pizza, and shared slices between the three of us- easily the best way to do it! Between my margherita with burrata, Cornelia's truffle, mushroom and präst cheese, and Amina's pesto and parmesan, there was hardly anything left when we were done.

After dinner we walked back towards Söder, stopping at the benches by Eken next to one of the Tbana stops at Slussen, and just enjoyed the golden hour before sunset! It was an amazing evening catching up with family, and our younger cousin Amina even inspired a new business venture for Cornelia and I. Stay tuned to see what we will be working on!

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Not to brag, but I easily have the best co-workers. Not only is my boss super famous in Sweden (everyone knows who he is over here) but the people I work with are truly wonderful!

On Wednesday, we decided that us three girls would go out for an AW (after-work). Lykke has been with the company for 4+ years but is leaving at the end of August to pursue a degree (obviously we are happy for her, but will naturally miss her dearly), and in the interim, she is training Kajsa, who will take over her role in September. They are honestly both such incredible women, and I am so happy I get to call them both friends!

After landing an account with Strand Hotel on Nybrokajen before we closed for summer, one of their reps sent Lykke and I each key cards to their exclusive rooftop terrace. We hadn't taken advantage of it yet, and decided that Wednesday after work was as good an excuse as any!

We walked the 20 minute walk from our office on Södermalm to Östermalm, but sure enough when we arrived, the lounge was closed...

Not wanting to let this slight hiccup ruin our evening, Kajsa suggested we head to Dramatenterrassen, just around the corner. Such a great choice on her part! Between us we had champagne, cocktails, beer and laughs, and when the weather turned a bit sour, we decided to find somewhere else a bit more covered to continue the evening. Lykke's boyfriend Tom joined us, and what a great couple they make! He was just as funny and wonderful as I had imagined after hearing her talk about him, and it was awesome to finally put a face to the name.

We sat on Stureplan and had a few more beers before calling it a night. Kajsa and I said goodbye to Lykke and Tom, and decided we were hungry, heading o Max Burgers and stuffing our faces at 11 pm. After the best fast food I've had in ages, we called it a night!

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Jet lag, where do I even begin?!

Having gotten back to Sweden early in the morning, I dragged my suitcase on the Tunnelbana across town and finally got home around 11 am. The smart, sensible traveler in me knows that to come into a routine again, you should stay up and not sleep during the day when you get to Europe.

The tired and slightly hungover me, having had far too much red wine on the Lufthansa flight (those stewardesses are sneaky!) thought that sleeping from noon till 5 pm was a great idea. Sure enough, I barely got any sleep that Friday night/Saturday morning.

I dragged myself to Starbucks on Södermalm on Saturday afternoon to get a jump start on my writing, articles, and this blog, and fueled the day with one too many espressos. I had made plans to see my best friend Kels, the most amazing girl from Canada and my lifeline in Stockholm, and she was done with work by 10 pm. I ran home quickly to drop off my laptop (not wanting to carry around my nerdy Jansport backpack to the club on a Saturday) and met up with her, her boyfriend Joakim, and his friends.

We grabbed a few beers by Globen and then decided to head to one of the best spots in Stockholm, Olsson's Skor. Having formerly been an old shoe factory, it's now a fun bar in Vasastan that plays a mix between early 2000's jams, current day rap, and the Grease Original Soundtrack- all of my friends and I are obsessed.

After JAMMING out to Grease Lightning, we decided it was a bit too crowded for our taste, and picked up snacks on our way to Joakim's friends' apartment, before taking the Tunnelbana again to his place instead. We drank beer, ate far too many chips and dip, and I was wide awake and heading home after zero sleep at 9:00 am the next morning.

Let's just say I went to bed at 11:00 am and didn't wake back up till 5:00 pm that Sunday- clearly not helping me with jet lag the day before I went back to work...

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Grabbing a beer during my layover in NYC- it'd be rude not to drink a Brooklyn Summer Ale after all ;)

Having had the best time at home with my friends and family, I was a bit reluctant to get back on the flight to Stockholm. After all, I have such a great support system in Sarasota, and whenever things aren't going well in Stockholm, I always question my decision to move in the first place.

...Then I land at Arlanda airport just outside of Stockholm, and I am instantly reminded why I made the choice in the first place. I love everything about Stockholm. It's a big city, without being overwhelming. It's beautiful year-round, having been built on 14 different islands. And more than anything, it's the first time in my life I've felt like an actual adult.

When I moved to Geneva, Switzerland and then London, England a few years ago it was a big change, sure. But I knew both of those would be temporary. I was a nanny in both cities, and a part of me knew that my life there wasn't permanent. It was an incredible time, but I knew I'd be heading back to the states in 6-12 months.

Flash forward 5 years since I lived in Geneva, and I am slowly but surely building a permanent life in Stockholm. I have a full-time job, and co-workers that I adore. For the first time in my life, I have a cellphone contract in my name, and I pay rent on my own (yes, I fully appreciate how lucky I have been to have not paid for these things up till age 25).

Living in Stockholm, forming a completely new group of friends, and for the most part, supporting myself is a completely new experience. If I'm being honest, it's something I didn't know I needed, and I'm so happy I quit a job I hated 8 months ago. It's the best decision I've made in my life thus far, because although I love my friends and family in Sarasota, I adore my life in Stockholm.

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Andrew, me, Ashlyn, Morgan

I'm not going to get into everything my best friends, family and I got into over the week I was home- honestly, you'd be too jealous! But here are a few highlights:

True to form, we went out nearly every night- my friends know how to rally! I'm lucky in that my very favorite people put up with me for the week and made an effort every day. We went out and drank far too much on Friday. We ate cheese fries and mac-and-cheese on the curb before ubering home.

Made serving up curbside fries and mac-n-cheese!

We woke up the next morning and kept Saturday rolling with margaritas. We dragged ourselves to the beach and played card games with new friends. We went out of our way to compliment a beautiful woman on her beach outfit- only to have her best friend come up to us and say thank you, that her friend had lost over 100+ lbs and was nervous to be in a bikini, to begin with.

We sunday-funday'd like always, and played kubb at my mom's just like old times.

We grabbed drinks together on Monday, were fast asleep by 7 pm on Tuesday night, and ready again by Wednesday.

The best hairdresser ever made time for me in her schedule, and gave me Farrah Fawcett waves!

On Wednesday, my last night home before Christmas, we followed tradition and had a hot-dish cook-off. My best friends and family made incredible dishes, drank lots of wine, and formulated our plans for a new business venture.

Days like these make me so thankful for the family I was born into, and the family that I've created. I truly have surrounded myself with the very best people you could hope to meet, and I can't wait to see what the next few months hold in store for our new project and venture! Thanks for the best trip home guys, I love you!

The greatest people you will ever meet:

Peggy, Ashlyn, Andrew, Tyler, Morgan, Michael, Chip, Eden, Mom (me)

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Adding to my personal library!

Having had what was perhaps the best sleep in a long time, my Dad woke me up with coffee he'd gone out to get, and I did some reading on the balcony while he went out for a morning walk. It felt incredible to sleep in and not immediately jump into the car, and I think we both enjoyed having a morning for ourselves.

When my Dad got back from his walk, we got ready and walked down the street to another local spot for lunch. Greg (my dad) is now considering buying lake-side property in Wolfville, so we perused the real estate mag he had picked up during his walk and looked at a few properties. All I can say is I hope he buys something! The town of Wolfville is easily one of the most charming I've ever seen, and I think he'd really love it here. Plus, if I make the move to Boston, he'd be much closer!

We spent the afternoon browsing through the local book shop (one of my favorite pastimes) and read out in the sun all afternoon by the Inn's dock. It was honestly one of the most relaxing days I've had all year!

By 5 pm-ish, we were both ready to change for dinner, and we settled on dining at the Inn's restaurant since they had several exciting vegetarian options for me! Dad had seafood, and I had the most amazing roasted vegetables, with burrata and toasted ciabatta on the side- heavenly.

After lots of wine and great chat, we called it a night and got our things ready for the drive back to Boston the following morning, and our flight back to Florida.

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After a night in a fairly awful town and an even worse motel, Dad and I got up early to catch our 8 am ferry ride back to the US. A 6hr ride later, we were driving into Portland, Maine, and back on the highway towards the great state of New Hampshire.

I'll admit, at this point of the trip, I was acting pretty bratty. We'd spent so much time on the road, in the car, and just hurrying from place to place, that I was tired of just sitting in the passenger seat. I knew I was unfairly taking it out on my dad, who just wanted to make sure we had a great trip. I snapped out of it and changed my mindset to have an open mind about driving a few extra hours.

Moments after a hot stranger on the ferry told me I was what his "hippie dreams" were made of...

My Dad had found a lake in New Hampshire that was about two hours away from Boston-meaning it would likely be a great spot. I trusted his judgment, and I'm glad I did. When we pulled up to Wolfville, we parked the car and found a local restaurant on the lake to have dinner. We asked our waitress if there were any Inns close by, and she suggested Wolfville Inn. Since it was already 5 pm, I told my dad to give them a call and see if they had any rooms left- thank god he called when he did. We got the last room- a suite on the second highest floor with a view right to the lake, it was amazing!


The Wolfville Inn

After we got settled in our rooms and changed, we headed back downstairs to go out for a drink on the lake. We decided that since the following day was our last on the trip, we wanted to stay in that town and just have a day of doing nothing. Sure enough, our room was available the next day, and dad told them to put the second night on the tab.

We walked a few minutes to a local bar and watched the sunset over a few beers, talked to locals about the housing market there, and finally headed back to our rooms to sleep with open windows, fresh lake air filling our room.

Quite the turn around from the day before!

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Halifax, Nova Scotia

After the traumatizing events of the previous day, we decided to press on, and after a quick breakfast, we were back in the car. Our plan for the day was to check out Halifax, a stop I had been dreaming to make!

I'd always heard great things about this city, and it did not disappoint! Right along the water, Halifax is the perfect mix of Seattle/Boston/Vancouver, and the seafood was incredible!

Halifax, Nova Scotia

We parked the car and walked all along the boardwalk, eventually stopping at an awesome place right next to the water. I love a place that makes their own beer, and this spot surpassed my expectations! Dad had fish and chips, and I had the best roasted mushroom tacos, and we shared a side of truffle fries *insert ok-hand symbol emoji*.

I'm not religious, but AMEN...

The best tacos I've ever had!

After that awesome lunch, we jumped back into the SUV and pressed on to Yarmouth, where we were supposed to catch the ferry back to Portland, Maine the following morning. OMG, what a Sh**hole......

We stopped at three separate inns that all looked like they could have hosted any lifetime channel slasher film, and finally found one that had two rooms left. I kid you not, the shag carpet was left from 1969. We ran out to grab some wine and bought pizzas for take-out before we called it a night.

10/10 would NOT recommend Yarmouth, NS for anything besides the night before an early ferry ride.

Nova Scotia highways

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Our Inn, in Wolfville, Nova Scotia

After a less than thrilling day in Maine, we woke up early and decided to make the drive into Canada. Both my Dad and I were excited to head into New Brunswick, and he had found a ferry that left from Saint John to Digby, Nova Scotia in the early afternoon.

We had a quick breakfast (on styrofoam plates- in an upcoming article so you can read all about it) and jumped into our rental SUV to cross into Canada. After border patrol, we were soon to the harbor and after cutting a few people in line (Dad doesn't take no for an answer, which I love) we were parking the car on the ferry. A quick ride and a few beers later, we came into port, and saw beautiful NS for the first time!

We stopped at the tourist center in Digby, looked halfway on the map between there and Prince Edward Island (which we had planned to go to) and settled on Wolfville, a short hour and a half away. The town did not disappoint, and was easily one of the cutest towns I've ever seen! It reminded me a lot of a town an ex of mine lived in up in Northern Michigan, right by the water, with plenty of charm.


The most delicious ale from NS, which I had on the ferry!

Digby, Nova Scotia

Digby, Nova Scotia

We managed to snag a room at the most beautiful three story inn and started to bring our bags up to the room. Traveling with Greg (my dad) means he always BHOB's (brings his own booze), and this trip was no exception, meaning he needed ice for the vodka he had brought along. Starting up the steps, he was carrying his suitcase, brief case, along with a bag of ice, and was naturally wearing his prescription sunglasses on inside.

Now both of my parents are guilty of wearing sunglasses on inside (not wanting to change to regular glasses), but my dad has developed a cataract in one eye he neglected to tell me about and has a hard time seeing at night. When the concierge offered to help him carry his bags to the third floor, he refused and said he had it.

He did not have it.

As I was putting my things down in our room, I hear a crash, thud and moan in the hallway. Thinking he had just tripped, I asked "all good??"

He replied, "I think so, just bleeding a bit."

The hallway our room was in was poorly lit, with two-three steps in the same carpet as the rest of the hallway. This made it incredibly difficult to see there were steps (especially with his vision), and he hit the side of his face when he tripped.

I immediately run out, and see his head GUSHING blood. His aviators had sliced the side of his face (less than an inch away from his eye) wide open. Barely keeping it together, I run back to the bathroom and grab towels, give them to him, and escort him to our room. At this point, I'm panicking. I run downstairs and ask the first waitstaff at the hotel to get me bandaids and bandages, and she thankfully hurried. I run back up stairs, and find my dad has soaked an entire large hotel towel- at which point i start thoroughly freaking out.

I grab him a new towel and tell him I'm going to ask the front desk to call us an ambulance. I run down stairs and meet the concierge who had just grabbed him a bag of ice for his traveling bottle of vodka, and he informs me he has already called a cab, alerted the local hospital, and hands me $50+ for the cab. He helps me get my dad into the car, and 20 minutes later we are in the waiting room at a local hospital.

HOURS go by before anyone sees us- at one point he starts GUSHING blood again, throwing me into a veritable panic. Finally, after 4 hours in the waiting room, he is finally called back to get stitches, and I hang back in the waiting room (he doesn't want me to see him like that, which I can appreciate).

At 12:30 am (nearly 6 hours after it first happened), he has 10+ stitches and is ready to head back to the Inn. I'd be lying if I said it wasn't one of the most terrifying incidents of my life. Those who know me, know that my Dad is my everything. He is my rock, my best friend, and the one I turn to for any and all advice, so to see him in this position was truly terrifying.

Poor thing- we'd been out of the country for 3 hours, and he gets a severe injury. Naturally, neither of us had thought to get him travel insurance....

A few hours prior to the accident, this cutie in Nova Scotia!

The Inn, Wolfville NS

The Inn, Wolfville NS

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We left this in Boston...for "The Inn" in Bangor, Maine- life is an adventure!

Road-trip outfit! (Would not recommend tight high-wasted jeans in the future, FYI)...

Have you ever passed an exit while on a road trip, immediately regretted it, but soldiered on in hopes of finding something great a few exits later?

This is precisely what my dad and I did when we passed Portland, Maine- a lovely town right after you cross the border into the state. We missed the initial exit, and decided "hey we're along the coast, there should be a ton of places!"

A ton of places, there were not.

At this point, we'd driven from Boston to Salem, MA and done a quick stop there for the Witch Trials Museum (well worth it if you pass through!) and decided to get a jump on the following day by driving into Maine. When we missed our first exit, we thought as long as we stick to the coast, we'll find something.

After another three hours, and we arrived in Bangor, Maine. The best town name, let's leave it at that.

We passed three exits looking for the fateful hotel signs, and saw a few just as we had passed the exit. DAMN!-we thought. No big deal, at the next exit, we'll just turn back around, and get off there. Sure enough, we get off, and back on heading south. The exit ramp appears, we get on- thinking we're heading to a Hampton Suites (the best the option) and instead of it being a turn lane to the hotel, it's a turn lane BACK TO THE HIGHWAY. UGHHHHHHHHH.

Back on to the interstate we go, only to get off at the next exit (again), and get off at the previous exit (again). This time we veered to the right, and settled on "The Inn," right next to the most destitute and desolate looking mall you've ever seen. They of course had rooms, my Dad booked one, and then we were left with the decision for dinner.

In the vicinity, we had the options of: Long Horn Steakhouse, Olive Garden, Applebees, Taco Bell, and a few dodgy local spots. Having recently decided to become vegetarian, we settled on Applebees.

I spent a Saturday night at Applebees (my nightmare), and let me tell you- it was surprisingly packed! The menu is anything but veg. friendly, so I ordered salad (minus everything) and mashed potatoes, and drowned my hunger in Sam Adams Seasonal Ale.

We finished up a few beers, went back to the hotel, and called it a night after more wine (that we'd luckily bought in Boston)! Maine was surprisingly a dud...

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Boston Harbor

Having finally started to get over jet-lag, I woke up at a reasonable hour and we grabbed breakfast bagels before walking over to Faneuil Hall. We decided to grab tickets for a sightseeing trolley that did a loop around Boston, but also included a boat tour around the harbor, showing us where events like the Boston Tea Party went down. Sitting on the top deck, well enjoyed the breeze coming in from the Atlantic ocean off in the distance.

Upon our return to dry land and a few beers down by the water, we jumped on a trolley and worked our way through Boston's Westend before taking the Charlestown bridge to the other side of the city. We elected to jump off and walk up to Bunker Hill Monument (oddly enough, actually built on Breed's Hill) and made the bold choice to climb to the top.

A narrow and dark spiraling staircase with 294 steps took us top the top, where we caught our breath and had views all over the Boston area. What a sight! Since it's pretty crowded up there with little ventilation, we made the cumbersome trip back down and had jello legs for at least the next 30 mins. Hence why we both a bit awkward in our "WE MADE IT!" photos in front of the monument.

The view of Boston and Charlestown from the top of Bunker Hill Monument.

Not for the faint of heart! Here we are at the top, a bit sweaty.

Made it!

Once we had made our way back down, we walked along the Freedom Trail (a two mile walk around Boston's historic sights) and through Charlestown for a bit, before catching the trolley back to our side of town.

The Freedom Trail

Walking around Charlestown

After a bit more sightseeing and walking around, we grabbed dinner at a pub close to our hotel, and called it another early night. I was still trying to adjust to the time difference, so wine in my pj's suited me just fine!

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A very candid Greg in the Beacon Hill district of Boston, MA.

I think out of the major cities I've been to in the US, Boston MA is by far my favorite. I'd been a few times several years ago when an ex of mine went to Northeastern, and I loved it right away (in spring, fall and yes even winter)! When my dad asked where we should start out Northeastern road-trip, I knew it had to be Boston.

On my second day back in the states, I got back on an airplane, and we arrived in the city early afternoon. Once we got checked into our amazing hotel, The Liberty, we grabbed our rain jackets and took a walk around the city. My dad had been here years ago for work but had never gotten the chance to see much besides an office building while there, so it was fun being able to show him my favorite places from the times I'd been here.

The Liberty, aka the old Charles Street Jail- an incredible place to stay when in Boston!

After a glass of champagne, we walked through Beacon Hill and down through the Boston Commons and the Boston Public Gardens (America's oldest public green space) in search of a pub. Having lived in London for 6 years in the 90's when I was a kid, my dad loved the pub culture of the UK and still looks for pubs anytime he goes to a new city. Boston did not disappoint, having obviously been settled by frustrated Britts hundreds of years ago, and more recently the Irish.

The Boston Public Gardens

Overjoyed at finding hard cider and fish and chips!

Dad ordered a hard cider, his vacation drink of choice, along with the fish and chips we'd hunted for, and we sat back and enjoyed our first evening in Boston. On the way back to our hotel we found an adorable wine shop, picked up a few bottles, and watched a bit of news in our suite before calling it a night! It was a great start to the trip.

More of Beacon Hill, a district full of beautiful brick buildings and old gas lamps.

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A few weeks into the month of June, I was FaceTiming with my dad as per our usual Sunday tradition. and telling him he should come over and visit for a few weeks. Not too keen on flying (nothing infuriates him quite like airport security), he told me to book a ticket home to Florida and we'd go on a trip in the States instead.

Fast forward two weeks, and on the first Tuesday of my vacation, I got on a 7:00am flight from Stockholm, Sweden to Tampa, Florida, rushing through hectic Frankfurt airport in between. By the time I got home to Sarasota, I'd been up for over 24 hrs and just wanted to pass out. Alas, jet-lag caught up with me the next morning, and I was wide awake by 4:00am EST (10:00 am Swedish time) and had my vans on for a run by 7:15 am.

I spent the afternoon at my moms trying to get some sun (read: getting sunburnt) and taking photos of my moms' dog Eden till my two best friends got off of work. The one and only Andrew Coffey came to pick me up from my dads and, it being my first day back in Sarasota, we naturally grabbed Daiquiri's at DDeck before Ashlyn was done with work.

Princess Eden

The Green Parrot, better known as "poor decisions ahead."

Once the lovely Shlyn was done, Andrew and I stopped by arguably the best pizza place ever, Solorzano's, and picked up food. The only pizza you ever need is the "Hoboken Heart-attack," topped with pepperoni, bacon, and sausage; if you're smart, you'll order it with extra sauce and mushrooms like we do. Toss in a few garlic knots on the side, more sauce, and lots of red wine, and you've got yourself an unbeatbale evening.

Perhaps not the most professional photo, but the fact I fit three of my favorite things in this photo automatically makes it a winner.

Nights like this make me miss living back home so much, and I can't describe how happy I was to see these guys!

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"Hard" at work, coming up with style tips!

After a great night at our bosses house, we had one day left of work before mentally checking out (and logging off of our laptops) for three weeks! Lykke, my lovely co-worker, and I spent the day playing copy-writer and coming up with combinations of the Hurricane Lamps our company designs.

What started out as "pair this with this for a cool effect," turned into hilarious attempts at rhymes and poetry by mid day. Winning lines like "roses are red, violets are blue, pair X with X, that's what we'd do" can now be found on our companies webshop...

After hitting the wall around 3-4pm, two of our co-workers went out and bought champagne. We all powered down our MacBooks, grabbed a cup, and sat outside the office drinking down two bottles before heading out for an after work.

Martin and Lykke

Walking the steep hill from Slussen to Mosebacketerrassen, we rewarded ourselves with pitcher after pitcher of cheap beer, playing UNO for at least 2-3 hours. Martin's girlfriend joined us before Lykke has to go to a dinner party, but the three of us sat till nearly 11:30pm before calling it a night. Definitely the only way to celebrate time off!

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To celebrate the start of three weeks summer vacation, my boss Magnus hosted a summer BBQ Thursday evening before we closed for most of the month of July. What a great night! Our two companies that share an office, Skogsberg&Smart and HappyTear, came together to drink lots of wine and champagne, while managing not to burn too many burgers on the grill. Talk about a success!

Great sunset on Magnus's deck on Lidingö, an island just outside of Stockholm.

Leo, Kajsa and Martin hanging out before dinner.

Lykke, the grill master!

Leo and I (ignore my awkward wave, I never know what to do with my hands).

The whole gang!

(Leo, Kajsa, me, Sanna, Lykke, Martin, Mimmi, Susan, Magnus)

What a way to start off the summer! I went from working in the US for bosses who didn't believe in time off, to two bosses who agree to shut down for three weeks every July- have I mentioned I love working in Sweden?

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