the longest day of the year, and 364 other days

I can't stop playing ねこあつめ, it keeps my days bright.
If you've followed me or talked with me for a bit, or even flipped back to my really old (and rly poor quality omg) blog reviews, chances are you've gathered my origins: namely, that I am an American. I lived in America, in a little nowheresville type small town in Wisconsin all my years, save a stint at big city college that didn't work out too well. Now, I reside in the wonderfully strange and small Nordic country of Finland, I have a taste and sometimes craving for salmiakki that I thought was unpossible and joskus maa saunon, kun maa voin.

Last year this time, I left through Chicago's international terminal, my mother and father cried and hugged me and insisted on taking pictures as I walked through the security gate of no return. (Parents, right?) I'm very glad Skype exists, because it lets us talk and laugh for just long enough before we start to get on each other's nerves. My parents have adapted well to technology, even if sometimes they still can't figure out where the video chat button is for a solid thirty seconds.

I do love them, and I miss them and my little brother (twenty-two, hardly "little" by any standards, but eternally fifteen to me) a lot sometimes, but mostly because I wish they could see how I've grown.

Just a normal evening.
Last year this time was also a time when people kept asking me the same question: "Are you ready?"

There was only one real answer: of course not.

How is it ever fully possible to be "ready" to move to another country, to start a new future, to have every sign you've grown accustomed to on the street in another language, to have to re-learn how to ask for basic things like a napkin or where the bathroom is. Finns are kind and speak wonderful English naturally, since Finnish is only spoken by a handful of a million worldwide, but I still feel crazily shy speaking my native tongue, because I feel like I'm imposing. I didn't travel seven hours across the ocean to be an American in Finland--I traveled here to become a Finnish American. I can speak much more Finnish now, much to my excitement. I had a small victory party the day I was able to finally say to a shopkeeper, "No, I don't need help, I'm fine thank you," in Finnish and have them not respond to me in English out of an embarrassing kindness.

MAC Chili lipstick, a Christmas gift from my mother.
TenThree Labs Salve Stick, a gift from Noora. I used it up quickly; I love it.
Lit by our lightbox, which is likely to be a staple for winters to come.
Accompanied by coffee, the eternal staple.
Still, I feel I have grown much this year. I feel more sure of myself and happier than I have in many years, and in spite of the stressfulness of immigration paperwork, failed school entrance exams, and high shipping costs, (I just want my makeup, sob!) I am thankful this year of my life has been one of my best. I fall deeper and deeper in love each day, not the heart-fluttering and pulse-racing kind but rather the warm, soft blanket kind that comforts and makes you feel secure and at peace. The sun is finally coming out again, and the bleakness of winter seems to be fading.

I have survived.

More than just survived, I have flourished.

I am grateful to everyone this year who has loved and supported me, talked with me, or just been there to brighten my day, even if they don't know they did.

Kiitos paljon, I hope this next year may see us all bloom even brighter than the last.

Lots of love,
Noon xoxo


  1. As a fellow Wisconsinite abroad, this really resonated with me. You rock!

  2. I'm glad you found it spoke to you haha! You rock too. <3 I'm glad to have u as my fellow blogfriend.

  3. You know what, when I moved abroad I actually really WAS ready :-) Sounds like you had a year in which you've grown a lot and that you're in a good place now, that's great.

  4. Haha I'm glad then! I think I was ready too, but it just felt like you know, I could move now or six months from now and not really be any more "prepared", so I had no worries. I figured I couldn't really ever truly be Boy Scout level prepared, so I was as ready as I could get! I really do feel I'm in a good place, and it makes me happy. Do you still live abroad yourself?

  5. Yeah, I think I know what you mean :-) Yes, I do. I'm originally from Belgium but now I live in Switzerland. The plan is to eventually love to the US.

  6. Ahhh I see! If you ever end up in the US like you plan, I hope very much that you enjoy my country. :) It's not perfect, but at the very least it is quite friendly I think!




peachy noon

Meet The Author

Noon. 25. American born, Finland residing. I really love dogs.