My story is a colourful one, spanning from a scattered childhood in Sweden to spending many wonderful years in southern Germany, to finally settling on the beautiful east coast of Ireland for the last 20 years, raising three lively & lovely children with my dear husband Pat. I was born in southern Sweden in 1974, and, very soon, my three sisters and I had to take on duties and responsibilities which were neither suitable for young children, nor helpful for the shaping of our future. On many occasions, we were left to fend for ourselves, and, considering our age and size, we were not often successful. Before I was 19, I had moved 25 times and, I was more than used to being called "the new girl in the class". This constant uprooting naturally brought with it an internal unrest. Any grades I managed to achieve, clearly told my story and as I left home at the age of 16, I never managed to complete my 3.rd level education. But, had I been one to give up because of my past, I would not have been here today, and the strength and insight I have gathered fuels the fire I have for helping and supporting others.
Although I academically never excelled, I have been extremely creative since I was very small. I still have the very elaborate, fully illustrated story books I wrote in primary school and, if I may say so, they are not all that bad! My entire family tree is littered with designers, chefs, photographers, gardeners, musicians, artists, you name it, we have it in our family. So, I naturally leaned towards being creative and this is where I eventually found peace and focus.
I have always worked and as I got my first job at the tender age of 11, packing screws for a local factory, I knew that working hard and getting paid for it was the only way for me to go and since then I have worked as a newspaper sales person, waitress, pub manager, store assistant, deputy store manager, dish washer, art model, pizza baker, mobile phone sales person, ice cream sales person, baker, writer, author, journalist, accounts assistant, photographer, magazine publisher, designer, stylist and many more jobs I cannot quite remember.
In 2001, my husband Patrick, whom I met in Germany, I, and our eldest son moved back to his home turf, Ireland, and put down roots in a small town on its beautiful east coast. Two more children followed and my creativity quite naturally fell asleep for a few years. In 2014, when I finally was able to have a full night's sleep again, I discovered the joy of creating and photographing recipe & craft tutorials for international magazines such as Woman & Home, Country Living & Prima Magazine. Due to this, I was offered to become commissioning editor for my very own UK publication called "Scandinavian Makes", a task which was all consuming but, my oh my, did I have fun and I learned an awful lot about how the industry worked. This in turn led to me being offered to write two books: "Nordicana" for Octopus Publishing Group & "Sew Scandinavian" for Ryland, Peters & Small, plus, being co-author of another two books. During this, I also experimented in textile & porcelain design whilst running a Swedish bakery business. After having tried my hand at many different kinds of trades I found my way back to publishing and in 2017 launched a magazine called "Self Starter Magazine"; an uplifting and invigorating platform where professional men & women learned from each other by telling their stories, teaching others and passing on their personal & entrepreneurial experiences to help others. I single-handedly produced 12 issues, earning a mere €40 in advertisement revenue whilst working part time in a supermarket. You might say that it was wasted time but, I beg the differ. During these intense, exhausting & exhilarating 18 months, I connected with key people who today firmly have my back, I gained experience, knowledge, stamina and a sense of patience which I never before had possessed and, I made friends who's company I know I will get to enjoy for the rest of my life. This is when I learned that not all work has to produce money to be meaningful.
It was Self Starter Magazine, which led me to Karina, founder of AUNUA Academy and, as our friendship grows, we discover how similar we are and how much we are willing to give and how far we are prepared go, to bring AUNUA Academy to where it deserves to be. Each and every child, that is our aim, has the right to be seen, heard, respected & protected and education will bring just that. I am, all the way in to my bones, thrilled to be here with you and I cannot wait to see what we can achieve together. Onwards & Upwards, as I always say! /Kajsa