New Year’s​ resolutions don’t often work out – try this instead!


The New Year is coming up, and I can already feel the anxiety creeping up on my body.

Can you feel it too? 

I don’t know about you, but I never really liked this ritual with New Year’s resolutions. They’re usually too demanding and energy-draining, knowing that we’ll most likely fail them within a week or less. HOWEVER – this year I decided to make a difference. 

By researching my way to a better and more effective way of doing resolutions, I stumbled across a video by Valeria Lipovetsky (my favorite YouTuber!) – she came with some brilliant questions that you can ask yourself – as a smarter and much more effective way of actually sticking to your goals. (If you want to check out this awesome video, click HERE)

Here are the questions she presented: 


 – What moment stood out in 2018? Why?

– What happened in 2018 that helped you grow as a person?

– What happened in 2018 that you are most grateful for?

– What in 2018 didn’t work for you? Why?

– What is your biggest takeaway from 2018?


– What areas do I want to focus on in 2019?

– If I accomplish only one thing in 2019, what would I want it to be?

– How do I want to grow as a person in 2019?

– What should you stop doing in 2019?

– What do I need to do to bring myself happiness in 2019?

Eager to make a change, I decided to write down all these questions and make a very girly, inspirational, motivational bullet-journal out of it – which you can also try out!

In fact, I’m going to give you FREE templates on this journal –  just click the PDF-file further down in this article♥



New Years Resolutions Girly Template

I hope you liked my little idea of a bullet-journal for New Years, and I hope that some of you decide to try it out! I would love to know whether it worked for you or not, as well as different ideas and solutions on how to stick to your goals next year♥

Speak soon, and … HAPPY NEW YEAR!


Aftur S. Nerdrum 



INSTAGRAM: aftur_spildo 


#newyearsresolutions #goals #bulletjournal #motivation #mrsknightleyslibrary 


10 tips and tricks for hosting the best Christmas/book party


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“One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas Day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.”

Andy Rooney


Alright! There are only a few hours until the big day and I can already feel the stress and anticipation coming from the people walking in the streets.

Floors must be washed.

Ingredients must be bought. 

Cookies must be ready. 

The Santa Costume must be hiding in the garage. 

The tree must be decorated. 

Presents MUST be bought! 

If I’m not entirely wrong, Christmas can sometimes feel a little bit too demanding and not as joyful and relaxed as expected. But don’t worry. If you thought Christmas ends after the 25th, you’re wrong!

Remember that you can always host a delightful Christmas-gathering/party any day between Christmas Eve and New Years! And why not throw in a book-club while we’re at it? 


#1 – Limit your guest-list to only 7-10 people maximum 

No need to appear over-social. It’s so much better to only invite your closest and dearest family and friends for this kind of gathering. It makes it more fun, cozy and you’ll feel freer to come with inside-jokes and talk about whatever you want with the people who really know you. Also, if you’re doing a book club/Christmas party, it’s safer to only invite the literature-interested among your group of friends! 

#2 – Stock up your house with homemade cookies, finger-food, christmas-wine and Christmas-cocktails! 



  • Recipe for gingerbread: HERE
  • Recipe for Whipped shortbread-cookies: HERE
  • Almond snowball cookies: HERE
  • Christmassy Finger-food ideas: HERE
  • Best Christmas martini: HERE
  • Best Christmas poinsetta-drink: HERE


#3 – For predrinks, make cotton candy champagne glasses! 


This is a very festive and holidayish drink + very easy to make! Just put a bunch of pink cotton candy in a glass and pour the champagne in. Can it get fancier than this? 


#4 – Have a Christmas-playlist prapared! 

Personally, I prefer instrumental, classical music to these kinds of gatherings. But you do whatever suits you best! The point is to set the mood so that your guests feel comfertable and well relaxed. Here is a good playlist that I use: 


#5 – Brew lots and lots of coffee and make lots of hot chocolate! 

It’s important. Firstly, some of your guests might not drink alcohol (you never know!) so then it’s crucial to have something festive and Christmassy that they can enjoy as well. Plus … who doesnt want some coffee with their cookies? Always, always go overboard with these things. The more the merrier! 

#6 – Select a theme for the evening

If you’re doing a book club/Christmas-party together with your other bookworms, why not have a Charles Dickens theme where you focus on discussing his most famous holiday-book; “A Christmas Carol”? You could all dress up in clothes from his time and bring original copies of the same book with beautiful drawings and illustrations in them? There’s alot you can do literature-wise for a Christmas-party. Let you imagination go wild! 

#7 – Make sure your house is decorated and put lit candles in every room

You have no idea how much this sets the mood. And the candles are not optional, it’s a MUST! 

#8 – Prapare activities for your guests

If you’re doing a book club/Christmas party: 

  • Play the literature-roleplay-game: One person is chosen to play a character from a famous book, while the other guests have to guess who it is and from what book. If you manage to guess the character, you get 1 point, if you manage to guess both the book and the character, you get 2 points. The goal is to get 20. The winner gets a price. 
  • Discuss a book with the theme of Christmas (fex: “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens or “The Father Christmas Letters” by J. R. R Tolkien). 

If you’re just doing a normal Christmas party: 

  • Make your guests decorate your tree together 
  • Have a DIY-night, where you all make the christmas-decorations from scratch! 
  • Make everyone bring gifts and Play Secret Santa 
  • Decorate Christmas cookies together 
  • Bring a saved box of chocolates with different types and flavors of chocolate. Blindfold one of the guests and make them eat one. Can they guess which flavor it is? 


#9 – Make the house smell nice and christmassy by bringing in a lot of fir-twigs, orange peel, cinamon sticks and cloves


It’s nice decorations AND it smells heavenly in the house! 


#10 – Drink some alcohol or do something that relaxes you while you’re praparing the party 

This is the most important one on the list. It’s so easy for us to feel stressed and moody and stiff in the neck during hilday-times. Yes, there is a lot to do and prapare, but remember to take it easy. Drink some wine while you’re making food or do those yoga-stretches in-between baking. It may seem like theres no time for it, but you should always put yourself and your own health first, above everything else. The Holidays are for spreading love and happiness. It’s for relaxed time with family and friends. Remember this. 


Merry Christmas everyone♥



Aftur S. Nerdrum 


Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 22nd of December



She is a YouTuber, a mother, a wife and a nutritionist living in Australia together with her family. She makes videos about family life, food, personal stories/sufferings, health, philosophy/psychology and much more! Ever since I found one of her videos, I have been feeling so inspired by her. She always wanted to be a mother, however, she was diagnosed with Poly Cystic Ovaries (PCOS) at age 16, which includes having very unbalanced hormones in your body. Because of this, her doctor told her it would be very difficult for her to have a child. But that didn’t stop her! After marrying at 19 and settling down, she dived into lots of different research about nutrition and health. She started taking care of her own body, testing out different diets etc – and then – despite all odds – she fell pregnant at 20 – just ONE YEAR after getting married! It was what she always wanted, and she didn’t let her diagnose stop her from having it. I love this type of mindset and drive – really, you can relate it to anything that’s going on in your life right now. If there’s a job you really want, but you don’t have all the qualifications needed – don’t let it stop you! If this woman managed to get pregnant with her diagnose – you can get that job too! It’s all about what’s going on inside your mind. Thank you @sarahlemkus  for making me realize this and for showing me the ups and the downs and lovely positives of having children at a young age. You inspire.



Aftur S. Nerdrum 

Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 21st of December



“Only the person who has experienced light and darkness, war and peace, rise and fall, only that person has truly experienced life.”

His first book I read was “The Royal Game”. I remember it like it was yesterday; I was taking a train ride from Sweden to Norway – the trip lasted 7 hours, but it felt like less than 10 minutes. Reading his book was like watching an intense series on Netflix. In fact, it was better. Reading a little bit and then taking a break is something that’s not possible with this story. Word for word – I had to know everything in one go! There was no going around that. In the end, I was left with a thousand and more question marks. “But why? But how? But ….” yeah …. that was pretty much what my brain sounded like when I went off the train and into the station. Ever since then, this book and story has been on my head. It was my first introduction to this incredible Austrian novelist and play writer. I have yet many books of him to read, and I can’t wait to dive into each one. “The World of Yesterday” is also a treat. Thank you Stefan Zweig, for contributing to a huge amount of inspiration to my writing.



Aftur S. Nerdrum 

Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 20th of December



How did it happen that their lips came together? How does it happen that birds sing, that snow melts, that the rose unfolds, that the dawn whitens behind the stark shapes of trees on the quivering summit of the hill? A kiss, and all was said.

There’s poetry to be found in every single one of his sentences – each word and expression is like drinking a sip of the sweetest wine. This man is officially a French novelist from the romantic movement of the eighteen hundreds. But for me … he is a man who has existed everywhere, in every time. 

Read his masterpiece “Les Misérables”.

You won’t regret it. 

Buy the book HERE



Aftur S. Nerdrum 


Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 19th of December


She is an incredible designer and tailor from Oslo, and believe it or not – she has actually made these beautiful clothes that I’m featuring in these pictures↑↑

Every day I am in shock by how much work she gets done. Not only is she a mother, but she also works every day nonstop to achieve her dreams. This is a woman to be inspired by, and it’s also a woman who makes extraordinary beautiful and timeless clothes which YOU can wear today! Just go to her Instagram account; @eline_dragesund – here you’ll find out how to get a hold of these clothes. And I promise you will not regret looking into this. Who doesn’t want to look timeless in a world which is so full of this boring consumerism?? who doesn’t want to look drop dead gorgeous in a coat which can’t ever be recognized by another girl – cause you’re the only one – or one out of very few in this world who’s wearing it? Thank you, Eline, for showing an example of a hardworking, strong woman who follows her passion and dream in life + makes breathtaking clothes!

Find her clothes HERE


Aftur S. Nerdrum 




Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 18th of December



“If something happened where I couldn’t write music anymore, it would kill me. It’s not just a job. It’s not just a hobby. It’s why I get up in the morning.”

Since the 1980s, he has composed music for over 150 films. Over many years, he’s been building himself a strong work ethic and a deep, passionate love for movie-soundtracks. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one loving his work from ex. “Inception”, “The Gladiator”, “Interstellar” or “The Da Vinci Code”. And you can really hear, through his music that he absolutely loves his work. In an interview, he even said that the only reason why he wakes up in the morning is to create music.  

Thank you @hanszimmer for inspiring so many people across the globe (including myself) to build and create something beautiful in our lives. I still listen to your music every day, when I write, when I read and when I daydream about a greater world. 



Aftur S. Nerdrum 

The 7 most romantic and unique gift ideas for your significant other

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WARNING: These are very romantic, couple-like presents — maybe you and your bf/gf are not there yet ….? 

But if you are … 

  1. The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman 


Why: Read this book together, and you’ll be guaranteed with amazing growth in your relationship! Falling in love is easy. Staying in love—that’s the challenge! How can you keep your relationship fresh and growing amid the demands, conflicts, and just plain boredom of everyday life? THIS BOOK has the answers. Figure out each other’s different love-languages, and you are gold. No more silly misunderstandings and misinterpretations anymore! Tempting …? 

Get it HERE


2. The Quiz Book For Couples by Kim Chapman 


Why: Similarly to the book mentioned above, this gift can also help spark the early flame of your relationship – by taking some quality time out and doing something completely new and out of your comfort zone – like taking a quiz together. This book is broken down into sections with questions for the different aspects of your relationship. Each person answers the questions individually and then compares his/her answers to the other person. The person with the most correct answers wins that section and gets to chose from a reward given by the other person – and this reward can be anything! Use your imagination … 

Get it HERE


3. Name A Star – Lovers Edition


Why: (ALERT- THIS ONE IS VERY ROMANTIC!) You and your special loved one can be together forever in the midnight sky! Yes, It’s true. I’m not kidding. You can actually get two stars named after you + they can be next to each other as a sign of your love and appreciation …? 

Get it HERE


4. Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke 


Why: This one is not as romantic as the previous ones – HOWEVER – it’s filled with great advice on how to live one’s life, improve on weaknesses and strengthen ones qualities. And since relationships are all about self-growth and noticing each other’s weak spots, this book is just PERFECT for both parties! You can read it together at night, underline important quotes and have discussions about it afterward. This is (at least for me) the very best thing about being a couple with someone! Namely; The mental connection. 

Get it: HERE


5. “open-when-letters” 

Open When Letters

How: (I also wrote about this gift idea in “The 7 best gift ideas for mothers” – HERE)

““Open-when-letters” is very easy and very fun to make. You just buy a bunch of little envelopes and cards, write a little message on them and put them in a box. Your significant other is not supposed to open them all, only if they’re feeling a certain way, or on a special day (depending on what it says on the envelope). Inside you can write whatever you like – use your imagination and put your whole heart into this project. (WARNING: This can turn out very emotional! You MIGHT cry or make your significant other cry …just saying.) Your message on each one is up to you, but here are some examples to make the process a little bit easier:

  • Open when you’re feeling happy 
  • Open when you’re sad
  • Open when you feel rejected 
  • Open when you feel lonely 
  • Open on your birthday 
  • Open when we’ve just had a fight
  • Open when you’re unable to resolve an inner conflict 
  • Open when you’re sick 
  • Open when you’re feeling hopeful about the future 
  • Open when you want to take a walk along memory lane 
  • Open when you’re losing faith 
  • Open on Christmas Eve 
  • Open on New Years 

And so on and so on … 


6. A gift-card from your local cinema  


Why: If you’re a couple that likes to watch a lot of movies, and maybe ESPECIALLY go to the cinema together, this gift is perfect for your significant other! Throw in some extra money on that gift card, so that you can enjoy watching up to 5-6 movies at any given time. Your partner will love this! Plus – it’s a great excuse for you two to spend more quality time out with each other:) 


7. A commissioned drawing or portrait 


Why: If you feel like being extra unique and extra sporadic this year, commissioning a portrait of your significant other is the best gift! It will make them feel special, valued and appreciated. It will also be a gift that will bring sentimental value into your home♥ But remember to choose a clever painter/drawer, and don’t do it unless your partner is into these creative, artsy things as well! 


Ok, that’s it for today’s post! I hope you liked this little list. Do tell me if you’d like more of these:) 



Aftur S. Nerdrum 

Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 17th of December


“There’s no cheating in yoga, you make it your own”

She is the woman behind the YouTube channel; “Yoga With Adriene” – a channel that’s loved and cherished every day across the globe – from people who suffer mentally, physically or just want to get more fit. From her videos, you’ll get free yoga-lessons, instructions, uplifting words during the process and you EVEN get to do different yoga-exercises depending on your mood that day! How great is that? She has yoga for hangovers, yoga if you’re feeling sick, yoga for stress and anxiety, yoga for mornings, yoga for evenings, yoga for trips, yoga for better motivation and focus, yoga for uncertainty and SO SO many more! I found her videos by coincidence on the 1st of January, the beginning of 2018 – and since then, I have never stopped doing yoga for a single day. I was very hesitant to this exercise before. I thought it was weird and hippie and belonged to a certain kind of group. But then I found Adriene’s videos and it all changed! I am a new person because of her, and because of her, I am also more focused, more motivated, inspired and confident. You should really truly try out some of her exercises. It will change your life for the better. Thank you @adrienelouise  for this lifelong journey that you have taken me on. 



Aftur S. Nerdrum 

Aftur’s Christmas Calendar: 16th of December



“A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.”

It’s Jane Austen’s Birthday today and in her name, I will dedicate this day to talking a little bit about how much I love this queen. She is an English novelist known primarily for her six major novels (which have also turned into motion pictures);

•Sense and Sensibility

•Pride and Prejudice

•Mansfield Park


•Northanger Abbey


She was born on this day, on the English country-side in 1775. Her books are adored all over the world, her stories are constantly being recaptured by clever directors and screenplay writers, and young girls are seeking comfort in her stories – relating to her characters and drawing similarities to their own life experiences. She was the mother of all female writers who became known in the 19th century, including the Brontë sisters, George Sand, Elizabeth Gaskell and many more! She introduced the archetypical Alfa-male through her character; Mr. Darcy, whose name is still being mentioned as a casual reference across the globe, even today! Words cannot express how much I’ve enjoyed her books and the films based on them. They were the ones that guided me throughout my whole childhood and made me to who I am today. Thank you, Jane Austen, for inspiring, uplifting and motivating so many other girls today. If you only knew then, how much of an important figure you’d be in the 21st century! You are our heroine.


Aftur S. Nerdrum