The story of VH

Villa Hattarala is a pink wooden house built in 1924. Our family moved here in December 2009 and we named the place as Villa Hattarala. The story behind this name? Well, I'll tell it to you some other time.

The house has 3 rooms and a kitchen. Ground floor we have our kitchen and living room and also a toilet and a small hall. Beneath the hall floor there is also a small cellar to store home made jams, juices etc. One can enter it through a hatch on the floor. It's like an extra refrigerator and rather common in old houses in Finland. Bedroom is on the first floor as well as lounge and bathroom. There is also a corner for home office on the top of the stairs. This whole house has two separate homes - both having more or less the same floor plan. Our neighbor on the other side is a fantastic woman with whom living in the same house couldn't be more easy-going. And though we make plans and work together we still have our privacy. The plot has been devided into two areas with equal amount of square meters. We are the Kings on our side and she is the Queen on hers. And then there is this "no ones land" - the front of the main entrances - where we concur together.

I still remember the day we visited the house with my husband Antti for the very first time. Both of us had exactly the same thoughts and feelings - this is the house for us, we've come home! And that feeling is still strong if not even stronger. I often find myself thinking how happy and priviledged I'm to be, to live, to love, to work... in this house. Yes, it is old and needs a lot of care and also money. And yes, the garden also needs a lot of attention. But would I rather live somewhere else? No way! All the sweat, all that work, all those surprises are worth every minute.

Villa Hattarala changed the value of our everyday life. Just picture it! A sunny summer morning,  a cup of fresh coffee and daily newspaper. Sitting in the garden under the apple trees while birds are singing and the grass is still wet after some morning dew. Or during the cold winter months waking up feeling a bit chilly, wearing a pair of hand knitted woolen socks, put fire in the kitchen stove, make some breakfast and slowly start feeling the smooth warmth from the stove filling the house.

This place, our precious home, also made me think my professional life in a new way. Garden madness took me. This September I will enter a school for gardeners and start my studies to become one. Work as a visual merchandiser is on hold for next two years. A new page in my life has been turned. My dream is to start an own business one day. Maybe something to do with planning gardens, inspiring others with their gardens, garden products using recycled materials or perhaps a small shop selling some special garden stuff... Dreams to dream, visions to be made reality.

Villa Hattarala seems to have this special effect on people. Many have said that this house has lovely, calming and relaxing atmosphere. Often they want to stay on our couch and just enjoy the moment. And aren't we proud of all this.

Welcome to my blog. I promise to share my thoughts and a piece of my everyday life here in the house and in the garden of Villa Hattarala.

- Mika -