Thursday, June 23, 2011

Smoke sauna

Again it is midsummer time in Finland...this hasn't been so nicely reported at BBC's Finland's midsummer madness, but I love the celebration! The sauna, nice BBQ, sparkling with strawberries, the midnight bonfires...

My husband is very fond of sauna, but the traditional smoke sauna (pictured here) we use for a bit more special occasions. The only reason for the occasional use is that it takes 6-8 hours to make it properly warm. I took a little head start for the decoration, as we received a big load of firewood yesterday on our yard, and I just had to try, if I can loosen the birch bark!

And I managed, even though I then later today found out that you should do this during the spring when the sap of the tree is still in the trunk. Anyway - one thing led to another, I cut out some hearts, and it turned into a door decoration. Simple, but very midsummer!

My father-of-law was here a few days back, and when he had left, we found 6 of the below bath whisks on the porch. Couldn't wait until tomorrow to use them :)! We use the vihta or vasta, made of fresh, preferrably young birch twigs, to beat ourselves to get the blood circulating in sauna. Sounds very medieval, but the scent of birch leaves is delicious in the sauna!

Our smoke sauna is built on a rock, and it looks like a small, centuries old hut. Designed and built by Kuortaneen hirsitalot, a bunch of talented guys from Pohjanmaa, the western part of Finland, it really fits the Finnish nature.

Have a good Midsummer!!

juhannus, savusauna, mökkisauna

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