Väinämöisenkatu 21 B 27

00100 Helsinki

Finland

Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm

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Heli Thorén

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Can you introduce yourself with a few sentences?

I am a visualist, writer and an entrepreneur. Together with my collegue I own a publishing house called Cozy Publishing. Beautiful books and products is our thing.

Any book, movie, exhibition, magazine or restaurant recommendation?

We love going to movies with my kids. We were all happy to see the new Disney film about Vaiana, a strong, smart and funny girl from Hawaii. In the film she is not after a prince, but to have a meaningful life - something for small girls and boys to look up to.

I also recommend to try our new book called Mokkapala. It is a recipe book for all the supermoms and dads out there, who are living the life of a "hobby buffet parent". The book is full of easy recipes you manage to bake with a challenging timetable as well.

A good piece of advice that you have kept in mind?

"Eveyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind, always."

What inspires you?

Beauty inspires me. I am inspired by beautiful places - I have my favorite ones that I go to when I want to feel happy and nourished. In Helsinki I love to drink my tea at Ekberg or at Cafe Engel, eat a dinner at Elite or at Maxill - classical cafes and restaurants that I really appreciate. Ateneum and Sinebrychoff's Home Museum are also places I go to for inspiration. Art inspires me, as well as people who are genuine and who you can have a real conversation with.

What is your ideal day off?

Home is something that I value enormously and I love hanging out at home.  My ideal day off starts with a brunch at home with the kids and my spouse. We cook together, eat, read the newspaper and talk. After that we meet friends, maybe go to Tervasaari near our new home and have picnic there - champagne and laughter included. We would end our day at our place, talk, listen to jazz and sit on our balcony and have a cigarette. The kids would fell a sleep on the couch with confetti in their hair and a smile on their face.

What kids related brand do you appreciate?

I am very inspired by French Milk Magazine. Reading Milk is a trip to a visual wonderland with its beautiful pics of kid's fashion and interior design. I am a big fan of quality magazines and books - the ones you can actually hold in your hand.

I am publishing my first children's book as an author that tells the story about a little girl called Penny, which is why I have been browsing through my all time favorite fairy tails by Astrid Lindgren and Tove Jansson with the kids. Their books about Pippi Långstocking and Moomin never go out of style.

What place do you want to visit and why?

This spring we are travelling to Florence together with our extended family and my kids. I love Italy, but I've never been to the Florence area before and I look forward to seeing a city full of history, beautiful architecture and art. Also spending time with the family, swimming, cooking and enjoying good company makes me happy.

What annoys you?

We are starting to sell more books and design products internationally, and our big target this year is to be noticed as a quality brand worldwide. I believe in us, but I have noticed that here in Finland we should work on the atmosphere we have amongst us: cheer people up, believe in others and ourselves, and also say the good stuff out loud. There are exceptions – people that empower you and truly want you to succeed. My dream is that we could refer to the Finnish people as a super supportive nation.

How did parenthood change your life?

Parenthood has made my life more meaningful: Christmas has never felt this big before the kids. I also remember the exact moment I realized, after given birth to my first child, that a part of my heart will always be with my kids. I will never be so carefree like I used to be, I will always - in some level at least - worry that my kids are alright. That is a bittersweet pain I have to accept in my life.

How do you manage to balance your life between family, work and everything else?

It is hard, especially as an entrepreneur. Together with my kids we introduced the "park your phone" system, which means that we leave our phones in a certain parking area when we are at home. I try to do the same, so that we really connect, see and hear each other. I have a joint custody with my ex-husband so the kids are not all the time with me and therefore when they are, I want to really know what's going on in their lives.

I am a morning jogger, I usually go out for a run before office hours, that's the way I take care of myself. I also believe rising above the ordinary life is possible even on a regular Tuesday. Togetheth with my spouse we enjoy cooking together and maybe watch a movie afterwards. It is important for me to make every moment count in a good way. I've realized that I really love the ordinary stuff in life: lighting candles, listening to Radio Vega and eating spaghetti Bolognese with the family - priceless.