An author who moved to the north-east one year ago – having never visited before – said it is one of the best decisions she has ever made.
Birgit Itse touched down at Aberdeen International Airport from Estonia with her teenage son on December 30 last year.
Since then she has “found freedom” and published a book with the hope of inspiring others to do the same.
“For the first time in my life, I feel like I’m home,” she said.
“It has been one of the best years of my life.”
Ms Itse first visited Scotland while studying in 2011, and returned several times including with her son in 2017.
She said: “There was a moment when the plane had landed in Tallinn and was slowing down.
“We had both been thinking it but we looked at each other and he said it: ‘Can we go and live in Scotland?’”
After putting their dreams on hold, the pair decided to make the trip across the continent again last year, this time with all their possessions split between two suitcases and two bags.
Ms Itse said: “When we decided to move, we picked eight houses we liked in Scotland and created eight lists of things we liked – and the Aberdeen house had the most.
“I’d never been to Aberdeen before – the closest I’d been was Balmoral.”
Back in Estonia, Ms Itse had begun keeping a blog online using Instagram to gather photos and her thoughts.
She said: “I had been struggling with confidence and I wanted to write.
“I was worried at first but I got used to it.
“It took me three or four months before I got the courage to show them to someone – and she told me I need to make it into a book.
“We all want to feel our work is needed so that was maybe the best thing someone could have told me.”
Ms Itse’s book, #õnnelikteekond #becominghappy, was published last month.
Written in English and Estonian, it features a series of poignant passages with photographs from around the world.
“It’s not got tips and tricks and I’m not promising to give people any life secrets,” she said.
“I just hope to inspire people to find their own ways of becoming happy.
“There’s no right or wrong way to do that – it’s about how you live your life and the way you respond to situations.”