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Goodbye Martinique

Today is our last day in Martinique Island. The past five months flew by so fast, with sweet and bitter days but the atmosphere here made it hard not to stay positive, giggly and enjoy each moment being in the freaking Caribbean baby XD, surrounded by white sands, palms, clear water, lots of activities and a super busy social life none stop. Such a blessing!

I am super happy today. I had to remove all the past day's diary posts ( posts written under the influence of others drama) as part of my spring cleaning.. cleansing the past and welcoming a bright new future. Miracles kept coming to my life recently one after the other and I can not help it but feel the luckiest and happiest woman on the planet. Martinique is indeed a special island, something about it that triggered lots of things in me, as I mentioned before that is nature effect on my soul. I will defiantly try to come here again someday, perhaps on a bonding vacation with my daughter :-). I am at total peace with my surroundings and everything will be done in harmony.

I have learned lots of things being here in the la la island, had a great time at the beach/pool with my daughter and as a family. Met some wonderful people, made new friends, tried lots of new things and activities. Experienced and explored a new me in new conditions and I feel so pleased for that. My vibration is quite high and very hopeful. Turning old pages already started and I have an enormous sense of freedom and high energy ready to start a new chapter next month.  Wouuhouoooo!!!

This evening will cozy up with Julia watch the Trolls Movie, and I will be watching some Netflix stand-up comedy when she goes to bed. Our flight is super early in the morning. I am currently doing the packing and final cleaning and this is my mood at the moment.. Have a wonderful Friday and a kick-ass weekend. Remember to say GRATITUDE!!!

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Gorges De La Falaise Hike

Another breathtaking adventure in Martinique Island. Now that we only got 6 days left, I am trying to take advantage of each day here to recharge my spirit and soul before I get back to my life in Västernorrland and my personal responsibilities that are waiting for me there. 

This hike was even greater than the last one. Read more about Les Gorges de la Falaise here. It was a hike through the jungle, water, and very large rocks, the view from below was magical. As soon as we made it to the waterfall I got an amazing zen feeling and nature started whispering to me that divine talk. I usually get skin goosebumps and a sensation as if I will nearly cry when I meet the beauty of nature. I first got it in Langkawi island in Malaysia, and I continued getting it ever since until recently in Norway last August and here.

So far me and the ladies have done 3 hikes, one in Didier, the volcano, and this one. We had a jet ski tour to the bat cave and back and I did a dive. Now I can not wait to do more the rest of the days we've got left.  I also need to make my hotel booking in both locations I am traveling to in April. 

I am spending Saturday night watching Mbc the voice as I write this update to be published tomorrow, will be going to bed early again. And tomorrow my dear Linda is coming with her son to spend the day with me and Julia, we will make our favorite ginger and green apple virgin cocktails and enjoy moms chilling day by the pool, and plan our (home decor) shopping trip to Marrakech in the fall:-).

 Below are two favorite songs of mine that match with my mood during the trip. Gratitude! 

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Portfolio Sneak Peek

Hello blog buddies! Here is a quick update. Today is the 3rd day after the hike. My body is sore and I can not left up my legs, so I spent time at home only relaxing, reading and meditating yesterday, processing some of the recent events. Tomorrow Julia´s Aunt family are leaving back to Sweden so I will be able to get back to my daily routine again.

Now as I listen to John Mayer I am working on updating my portfolio. I haven't made a portfolio since 2013 when I was at the art academy. It was a simple portfolio made of a summary of my artwork at the academy back then. I published it in issuu profile.  Then just for fun while I was working with UI design I made a portfolio draft while testing different styles WordPress portfolio. It's not made professionally because I was already working and did not have a motive to improve it.

The reason why I am taking some time now to make some mockups, posters and creative graphics samples to display. I am also trying to display the freelance work I did during the past few months. So as soon as I am done with the new portfolio I will publish it for you guys to take a look. Stay around!

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Mount Pelee Volcano Hike

Yesterday me and my bestie Moa went on the volcano hike I mentioned before. It was such a blessing doing this "divine feminine" adventure together to pick up strength and clear our minds. It took us 6 hours we started at 11 and ended at around 16. As I was in the middle of the hiking and in the toughest parts I remembered parts of the book Wild which I read a few years ago. I could relate to some of the author described hiking moments. It was more than a regular hike. The view below and the rising steam above us was such a beautiful scene to witness. 

I made sure to take some time to breathe deeply as I practice my gratitude and to be awake and live moment by moment and not to think of anything but the present moment. The atmosphere was breath taken as if we were on a different planet, or a place from another time.. like the medieval movies and we are two women worriers making their way to conquer the mountaintop. Here below in this photo I stand in the tree yoga pose as I repeat the mantra hmmmmm mmmm.. and Moa was joking I couldn't stop myself from smiling :-) . 

As I am writing this post I am waiting for my pick up to have another ladies day out. (You can follow up on Instagram live, their will be champagne involved, we are celebrating Moa`s 30s old birthday).

Mount Pelée (French: Montagne Pelée meaning "bald mountain" or "peeled" mountain")is a non active volcano at the northern end of Martinique, an island and French overseas department in the Lesser Antilles island arc of the Caribbean. Its volcanic cone is composed of layers of volcanic ash and hardened lava.The volcano is currently in a quiescent state, which means it is not active but is registering seismic activity. Elevation 1,397 m (4,583 ft) -  Prominence 1,397 m (4,583 ft).

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Grocery Shopping In Martinique

Here is another post about Martiniuqe island, just as I promised you guys that I will try to write as much as I can about our 4 months experience. You can also follow my Martinique stories on Instagram where I post about our day to day living in here. Before we come here I had high expectations when it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables, I thought I will be eating healthy organic fresh food all the time. Well! nope.. everything did not meet our expectations when it comes to food, of course comparing with Sweden's food quality. One of the reason why you guys do not see any new food recipes in my blog anymore. 

The food prices compering to the quality are very bad. Carrefour supermarket is the best place you can buy grocery at, but the quality is terrible to what we know. Especially everything that comes caned. At the local market you can find fruits and vegetables but for ridicules prices. Not to mention imported ones like tomato, bell pepper and so on.. all things that doesn't grow here. Its almost impossible to make international dishes since lots of ingredients are missing. I really miss my food :-P 

We all keep wondering how doest the standard local Martinique people afford to eat well. Here I collected some of the local fruits and vegetables names and info. I took this photo below at the local market. I hope you enjoy these info and insperation.  

Fruit and Vegetable in Martinique:

Ackee (or Quenette)
A small fruit with a smooth green rind, it grows in bunches and is sold around September/October time at stalls and at the market. The opaque pale orange flesh is sweet and covers a fairly large inner stone that can be eaten when grilled.

Apricot (Mamey Apple)
Totally different in looks to the European Apricot, the local apricot or Mamey apple (Mammea americana) is generally not eaten 'as is', the flesh can be hard with an astringent, bitter taste. It is better prepared as jam or stewed and sweetened.

These green pear shaped fruit have thinner smoother skins compared to those normally found in Europe. Avocadoes can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes and are a common ingredient in Creole cuisine. Although not naturally sweet, avocadoes have a rich, creamy and subtle flavour which is perfect for sweet treats such as milkshakes or smoothies as well as savoury dishes such as salads or a local specialty, Feroce d’avocat, made with avocado, cassava flour, cod, garlic and piment.

The range of bananas available in Martinique is quite astounding, a great variety of colours, sizes and even shapes! However the tiny sweet finger bananas and bananas that need cooking (plantain/bananes legume) are always found in markets alongside the 'traditional' banana that can be found in every European supermarket. Although visitors can find it hard to differentiate between a banana and plantain (vegetable banana), there are certain differences; the plantain has an extended 'knobbly' end to it, is harder in texture and has more pronounced 'sides'. Plantains are not eaten raw; they can be fried, boiled, roasted or stewed.

Think of big green footballs with dimples, growing in enormous trees, and you will know a breadfruit when you see it! Roasted, fried, boiled or even prepared as a souffle...
Breadfruit is cooked in similar ways to potatoes, but the fibrous inner core should be removed!

The cacao pod is yellow when ripe, the white flesh from around the seeds is sweet and tender and can be eaten 'as is'. It is this flesh and the seeds (or beans) that are roasted to make the main ingredient for chocolate. Sticks made from the roasted cacao can be purchased in the local markets, grate it and add to milk with a dash of nutmeg to make 'real' hot chocolate; the ladies in the markets selling cacao sticks will be happy to give you full instructions.

Carambola (starfruit)
Not originally native to Martinique, this originally came from the Asiatic countries but is grown locally now and widely available throughout Martinique. Although the entire fruit can be eaten 'as is' it is often used to decorate drinks and desserts due to the star shape of the cut fruit, it can also be cooked and is used to make jams and relishes.

Cashew Nuts
It would actually be more correct to call them cashew seeds as they grow at the end of a rather peculiar 'apple'. This apple can be used to make a drink but is rarely for sale in Martinique. Like cassava, the preparation (hulling and roasting) of cashew nuts is best left to experienced people as incorrect handling can lead to health problems due to certain toxins. This is why cashews available for sale are always shelled and roasted, never raw and unshelled.

Cassava (Manioc)
The granular Cassava or Manioc flour extracted from the root is used to prepare a variety of dishes in the Caribbean including Martinique. In Europe this is better known as tapioca. The root itself can be eaten boiled and is then sometimes fried with other ingredients. There are two varieties of Cassava, sweet and bitter. Cassava (or Manioc) is something we recommend you do not prepare yourself! Incorrect preparation, particularly of the bitter variety, can result in residual cyanide causing severe health problems.

The Christophine (elsewhere known as Chayote) is a bumpy pale green/white 'fruit' vegetable in the form of an avocado and around 15 cm long that is used to prepare the delicious dish 'Christophine au Gratin' amongst other dishes. In its raw form Christophine is quite tough and unpalatable. The shiny skin and the core should be removed prior to cooking. Although only the fruit is seen on markets in Martinique, the root, stem, seeds and leaves of this sprawling plant are also edible.

In the Caribbean people don’t eat the 'dry' brown coconuts, they eat them straight off the tree, when they are green or yellow. The milk and jelly inside is delicious fresh from the coconut but is also also used to flavour many Creole dishes, both sweet and savoury. A local dish that uses the coconut milk is ‘Blanc-manger’, a delicate light and creamy dessert. A word of advice, coconut palms may provide lovely shade on beaches but you should never sit underneath them, falling coconuts are a serious health hazard!

Coffee beans are grown in Martinique but less so than before when it was a major crop. Ground local coffee is occasionally found for sale, the flavoured varieties, such as vanilla, are particularly appreciated. Look out for the small trees bearing red berries when driving around the island, especially in the north.

Corossol (Soursop)
Also called Soursop, Corossol is the fruit of the evergreen tree Annona muricata which is native to this part of the world. The taste of the white pulpy flesh can best be likened to creamy strawberry with a touch of citrus. Corossol can be enjoyed ‘as is’ but is often made into juice, sorbet, and ice cream. The black seeds are not eaten.

Golden Apple (Prune de Cythère)
This green skinned fruit grows in bunches on large fast growing trees. The skin ripens to a golden yellow and the flesh has a tart acidic taste which is very refreshing in the form of juice. The fruits are generally around 7 to 8 cm long and contain a fibrous pit.

Guava (Goyave)
This yellow green fruit is grown on fairly small bushy trees. Around 5 cm in size the round or oval fruit is deliciously sweet and contains vitamins A, B and C and calcium too which is unusual for a fruit. The entire fruit can be eaten except for the seeds. Guava jam and juice are both very popular. Guava ‘cheese’ can be found in many shops and on the markets, this is made using the flesh of the guava that has been pressed and mixed with sugar and spices, it is delicious and can keep for a few weeks!

One of the ingredients of Ti Punch, the local smooth skinned round limes are commonly used in Creole cuisine, for basting, marinating, flavouring or as a central ingredient in many dishes. Fresh limes will be found in every Martinican kitchen. The young leaves can be used to make a refreshing infusion or tisane.

Sweet, juicy and delicious, this fruit is popular throughout the world and although often enjoyed ‘as is’ it can be used for juice, sorbets, desserts, chutneys and even curries as well as many other dishes. Although unripe mangoes can be used in cooking they should not be eaten raw. Mangoes vary in size and colour depending on the variety. Mango trees grow wild in Martinique. The flesh is firmly attached to a fibrous, sometimes hairy hard pit.

Deliciously juicy and sweet, the ripe yellow papaya is eaten 'as is'. It is often used in fruit salads. Green papaya is added to savoury dishes during cooking to help tenderise the meat. The seeds are edible and can be used as a substitute for pepper when ground. The leaves are also edible when cooked but rarely used in Creole cuisine. The papaya plant or ‘tree’ is very distinctive; the leaves fall off as the plant grows upwards and the fruit grows around the ‘trunk’ nestled among the leaf stems.

Passion fruit (Maracudja)
Most people have seen passion fruit for sale in supermarkets. This round yellow or purple fruit is filled with many seeds, each enrobed with a yellow pulpy flesh, varying in taste from sweet to fairly acidic depending on the variety. Passion fruit is rich in vitamins A and C. Often eaten ‘as is’ it can also be used for sorbets, juice and desserts.

Peanuts (or cacahuetes)
Although technically not a nut, peanuts are widely available throughout Martinique and often sold dry roasted in the shell in grey or brown conical packets on many street stalls. Also used in Creole cuisine and made into ice cream, the peanut is very popular here; if you are allergic then you should check the ingredients of local products and dishes carefully.

Piment (Scotch Bonnet peppers, Bonda Man Jacques)
One of the hotter piment or peppers, the Bonda Man Jacque is used extensively in Creole cuisine. If you try your hand at some Creole recipes then be careful with the dosage as this piment can be very 'hot'. If you are looking for spicy rather than hot then try the local Colombo spice mix.

This fruit is grown a lot in Martinique, for canning and for export. Like the banana, there is a wide variety of pineapples available in different sizes, colours and even look and taste. If you drive around Martinique you will come across many pineapple fields which look like fields of cacti at first glance.

Sugar Cane
Occasionally you will come across a vendor selling freshly crushed sugar cane juice; don’t hesitate, buy a goblet, the green brown brackish juice may look a little unappetising but the taste is delicious! If you find sugar cane available on the market stalls then buy a piece to chew on, both tasty and fibrous it was used as a toothbrush by the slaves.

Surelle (local gooseberry)
This small yellow fruit is quite acidic in taste so is generally not eat generally not eaten raw. The surelle fruit is normally candied or pickled in chutney or relish. Surelle is also used to make syrup and punch and can also be drunk as a sweetened fruit juice. The fruit, seeds, root and leaves have various medicinal properties.

Sweet apple (or custard apple)
From the same family as the Corossol, the custard apple or sweet apple also looks similar to the Soursop when broken into pieces; tender white flesh around black seeds, delicious eaten 'as is'.

Sweet Potato
A frequent side dish and ingredient of various savoury dishes in Creole cuisine, the sweet potato is a delicious vegetable that can be prepared in many different ways. It can also be used to make desserts. If you want to try preparing it yourself but without using complicated recipes then cook it any way you can cook a potato; boiled, baked, fried, pureed, roasted, sautéed, as chips...

An unusual fruit, the tamarind is both sweet and sour with a slightly acidic taste. Rich in tartaric acid and vitamin B the ripe tamarind fruit also contains calcium. The fruit is also used for medicinal purposes, the wood can be used for carpentry. It can be eaten raw and used to make juice and jam but is also an ingredient of Creole cooking and can be made into pickles, relishes and curries. It is one of the ingredients of Worcestershire sauce.

Source: 1,

Julia sitting on my legs and shaking me as I am writing this post XD

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Almond Biscotti Recipe

This is another classic delight to treat loved ones and family during coffee or tea break, we call it Fika. I make this biscotti often but the last year I have been busy with Julia so I didn't make them. I like to have a full jar of biscotti or cookies  in the kitchen even if I don't often eat sweets. This way I always have something to serve when someone comes by unexpectedly.

This classic recipe is flexible when it comes the type of nut or decoration. I sometimes make them with hazelnut or pistachio and I skip the chocolate but I brush them with egg yolk instead to get the golden color.  

Save or pin the recipe if you don't already have one and get creative with making biscotti this holiday. I hope you guys enjoy the inspiration! 

 Almond Biscotti Recipe, Mandel biscotti recept
 Almond Biscotti Recipe, delights, for coffee, fika, till fika, mandel biscotti,

 Almond Biscotti Recipe, delights, for coffee, fika, till fika, mandel biscotti,

 Almond Biscotti Recipe, delights, for coffee, fika, till fika, mandel biscotti,


2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cups finely chopped Almond (with a food processor)
1 cup dark cooking chocolate


Preheat oven to 350 F = 170 C degrees . Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, 3 to 6 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then the vanilla until combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl and beaters as needed.

Slowly mix in the flour mixture until combined, about 30 seconds. Mix in the almond until just incorporated.

Press the dough into two 13 by 2-inch loaves on the prepared baking sheet, spaced about 3 inches apart. Bake the loaves until golden and just beginning to crack on top, about 35 minutes, rotating the baking sheets halfway through baking.

Let the loaves cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees F.

Transfer the loaves to a cutting board and slice each on the diagonal into 1/2-inch-thick slices with a serrated knife. Lay the slices about 1/2 inch apart on the baking sheet and bake until crisp and golden brown on both sides, about 15 minutes, flipping the slices over halfway through baking. Transfer the biscotti to a wire rack and let cool completely before serving, about 1 hour.

Melt dark chocolate over a double boiler. Dip the ends or the entire flat side of each biscotti into the melted chocolate. Prop each cookie vertically in the aisles of the cooling rack, so the chocolate faces the ceiling. 

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