Golden Fun

We have finally bought a new car. It is really difficult to buy a car, first we had a budget, then there was a thought of what kind of car we wanted, then we started looking at ads. There are so many cars out there matching our criteria. We had to look at some cars.

If you want the quick version, just scroll to the end of the post, there is some good portion of rambling in the middle.

So, the new car should not be too old, we had a limit of how much we could put, and preferably not driven that far. That makes a tricky combination. We looked at Hyundais, first. Then we realised we didn’t want something as wind sensitive as the Yellow Danger. There are some other models there too. We also looked at VW-Polo and Golf and siblings from Seat and Skoda. Na, either they were Stone Age (or at least from the previous millennium) or they had been driving something like 300 000 km. At this point we realised we need to broaden our search and start actually looking at cars not only browsing ads.

So Susanna’s parents came to take care of our kids and we went for a tour de used-car-dealers. At the first place we had a rather shocking encounter with a Hyundai Getz, (I think it was), not that old, just not taken care of. There we also saw a Ford Focus that kind of opened our eyes to the Fords. The second place was closed (or just not answering the phone), the third place had grass growing out of the car so we decided that we didn’t really think that was proper treatment for a car to be sold.

After a much needed lunch we continued up the coast to look at some other cars. Two Hyundai Accent were the lures. We took one for a test drive. Not our car. And it wasn’t that nice either. We looked at some Fords again, but neither one of them was better than the one in the morning.

Off to the next place. We were greeted by an eager salesman (probably the owner of the place). After letting him know what we wanted he started showing us cars. It was a bit confusing at first; he was showing all kind of cars kind of at once. But we wanted to look closer at a few of them. Here we first came in touch with the French cars. We realised that a Citroën C4 wasn’t our cup of tea, centre speedometers should be banned. The C3 wasn’t that nice and lacked some features, I was really hoping for car with cruise-control. We looked at some Opels here too but they were a bit over our budget.

A Renault Mégane was a nice surprise tough. Coming in a bit below our budget it caught our eyes. So we asked for a test-drive. It was a pleasant surprise. Quiet, smooth and comfortable. We really liked it. Still we weren’t convinced. Renault isn’t a brand we were familiar with. It had some things that needed tending but that wasn’t a problem the salesman said, they would fix it.

Off to the next place, the last place in our tour. Here we had high hopes. Boy did they fail. The cars were in lesser shape than at the previous place and seemingly higher in price. We didn’t even test-drive any car there.

On the way home Susanna researched a bit about Renaults. The gathered info convinced us that a Renault could actually be a feasible choice for us. We still liked the Ford Focus though. Back home we did some background check on the most interesting cars we had looked at. 7 owners on both the Ford from the morning and the Mégane. But wait; the first owner of the Mégane was a car rental company. So that’s why it was so cheap. Some more research on owning a former rental crossed that car off our list. Now we were back to the Ford Focus. It had been rolling a bit far so we decided to look at some more.

As we didn’t want to ask someone to watch our kids again Markus and I drove to Kristianstad to check out some Fords we had seen ads for. The first one was sold. Going to the next one. At first it looked okay, but a closer look revealed rust, and plenty of it. It was actually more rusty than the Yellow Danger. And that isn’t a good sign for a car almost 4 years younger. It had some parts almost falling off. We still took it for a test-drive. It didn’t feel good either and made some funny noises.

Disappointed we looked around in the store. There was a Renault Mégane there too. It looked really nice. So we took a closer look. I asked if we could take it for a test-drive. It felt good. We looked at it, no rust to be found except for a bit on the break disks in the back. (One of them needs replacement in a not too distant future). Just below our budget but without winter tires. Winter tires could be included though. So we went home thinking this might be the car. Back home we did the background check. Only one user and nothing other showing up.

So, today (Monday) we went back there to buy it. Susanna hadn’t seen it before but she liked it too. Here it is, the Golden Fun. A bit bigger than needed, but it could double as family car in case we need to. Now I only have to install a phone-holder.

Golden Fun, Renault Mégane Combi

Here is a picture of the car.

We already made use of the fact that we have two cars again. Susanna went shopping while I picked up our daughter from a friend.

The Yellow Danger is doomed

Today I handed over the keys of the Yellow danger to the mechanic getting it scrapped. Sadly it’s too expensive to repair any more.

It is always hard to let go of things for me, somehow cars more so than other things. I think it has to do with all the memories I have with them. I really liked this one; it was charming in some strange kind of way. And it needed some planning to not block everybody on the motorway while overtaking.

We have repaired it a few times, but this time it was just too expensive to be feasible. Still it has been a cheap car doing a good job getting us to work and back.

The brakes have made strange noises for some time, so I decided to change them, I had ordered the parts and just about when I got the message that they arrived Susanna called me telling me she had a problem, the car just wouldn’t go forward anymore. So we had to get a tow truck to get the car to a mechanic. It wasn’t just the brakes but also some other parts that had to be replaced to get the car moving again, all in all it would have come to just below 2½ times the price we paid for the car to fix it. Sometimes one has to realise one’s defeat.

Here is one of the last pictures of the car.

Yellow Danger doomed

And here is the first good one I have from it.

Yellow Danger as "new"

Spring is coming

I just wanted to share some pictures of the flowers of our garden at this time of year. (Sorry for the bad quality of some of the pictures).

It started early, here some of the first, these Snowdrops came already in the beginning of February.

Snowdrops without snow

Just a few days later it looked like this instead:

Snowdrops with snow

They are still in bloom, and we have plenty of them around our place.

Then there was this little yellow thing. Our neighbour have many of them, we just have this one: (I have no clue what it is).

Yellow little thing

This lonely Crocus showed up in the beginning of this week:

Crocus one

There are more coming, but most of them I dug up clearing for the expansion of our vegetable garden. Susanna replanted them later and now they are growing in the round flowerbed, not really blooming yet.

Yesterday these two started just next to our house: I really like the colour of them.

Crocus two and three

Then we have these little ones, they are blooming a little now and then. I don’t know their name either. There was one in January and I saw one late last year, must be a special resilient kind.

Resilient little thing

Last weekend my brother and I took the kids on the lake. There was no wind at all.

Mirror lake

I also managed to make a selfie; it’s kind of crammed on the canoe, but it was fun.

Canoe selfie

Now I’m just hoping it gets a bit warmer soon.

A380

Today we picked up my brother from the airport. We went a bit early so that we could see the plane he came in with landing.

Emirates A380

It’s a big bird the Airbus A380, here just before touchdown at Copenhagen airport. It isn’t the first time I’ve seen it, both in Frankfurt and Dubai they are everything other than rare, but here it’s the only one coming in. And this time I knew someone on it.

Enough with the plane nerding now.

 

Sugar wedding

Today six years ago she said yes! I did too and we were wed. Time really flies. She is really something, wonderful to live with, great to have by my side. I’m so happy and lucky that it is us.

So the sixth wedding day is the sugar wedding, at least in Sweden or the English tradition. I like that.

Susanna

Here she is.

We celebrated today by going to the movies and tea after without our kids. It’s the first time we have done something like this since our son was born.

Father daughter time

Last Thursday our son should have had his first swimming class. We had our daughter at swimming classes back when we still lived in Stockholm and before our son was born here in Höör too. Inconveniently he got a bad cold with a slight fever too, so no swimming for him. We had promised our daughter to go swimming at the same time though so that had to be honoured.

So I went with her to the sports-centre so she would get some water time. It was really great, just me and her. We enjoyed both the big pool, she swam 25 meters (with a floating device) and the kids’ pool, were we played. I dived all the way across; she mostly jumped from the edge.

After the pool we went to one of the pizza places we have in Höör. It is nice to sometimes do something special like that. Having conversations with a four-year old is a lot more rewarding than with a smaller kid. Interesting things are going on in her head now. Even though I try to be attentive to what she is saying normally it’s not that easy to zoom out after a while in the everyday setting, especially when there is another kid, wife or other person trying to get your attention too.

Bird-feeder

We have a bird feeder in our apple tree next to our house. Today I decided to look a little more careful to see what kind of birds there are. Here are my findings, with translations to Swedish and German. I didn’t get all of them on photo, I wasn’t thinking about taking pictures first, here the ones that did end up on camera:

Goldfinch Steglits Stieglitz

Goldfinch

This morning I first saw this little bird at our feeder, probably the reason I’m writing this blog post.

Nuthatch Nötväcka Kleiber

NuthatchHere the Goldfinch has gotten company by a much more common visitor at the feeder. (I’m sorry for the dark pictures, not so easy to get them right they really move fast.

Great tit Talgoxe Kohlmeise

Great tit

This is the most common bird at our feeder, here one is picking up seeds from the ground.

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Here it is competing with the Gold Finch.

Great tit liftoff

And a lucky shot of one just after lift-off.

Common blackbird Koltrast Amsel

Common blackbird I love this bird for their songs in spring and early summertime. Here it looked a bit cold. There are not that many of them here, but they are coming regularly.

Blue tit Blåmes Blaumeise

F 2016-01-20-14-22-40

This small bird is also fairly common and normally one of the first to come to the feeder.

Marsh tit Entita Sumpfmeise

Marsh tit

I’m not entirely sure I’m right with this one; it could also be a Willow tit (Talltita Weidenmeise). This is in my guess the smallest bird we have here.

Here a list of birds I didn’t get pictures of:

Magpie Skata Elster

Jackdaw Kaja Dohle, I’m usually trying to chase them away, as they empty the feeder within minutes.

House sparrow Gråsparv Haussperling

There are also Pheasant Fasan Fasan visiting the feeder, but I haven’t seen it today. I did see the tracks though. We also found tracks from European rabbit Europeisk kanin Wildkaninchen by the feeder. I followed the tracks around our place and it seems they do not live in the pile of rocks we have but somewhere else, probably closer to the lake.

 

Winter is here

Yesterday it started snowing while we were driving to Malmö. As we went back the roads had transformed to a slippery white adventure. Lucky us we had put on the winter tires in the morning. (Na, I had checked the weather report and it said something about snow coming).

I just love snow. It makes life just a little bit better. Especially in November as it is so dark otherwise.

Our daughter and I made a snow-family the first night:Snowfamily

A close up of the snow-lamp in the background:

Snow-light

Today was filled with outdoor activities. First of all had the driveway to be cleared from snow. That took a while, luckily I wasn’t alone on that. Here is the before:

Snowed in car

And this was the result:

Cleared front yard

Our house looks so nice in the snow.

Our house in snow

You might notice something different in the picture, last weekend we had great help from a friend of ours and Johannes parents taking down the birch-tree just next to the house.

Here it is after it was cut down:

The fallen birch

And here is the house from the field without the tree:

Our house from the field

Thank you so much for all the help.

I’ve also been doing things with the play-house, first I made all the corner-boards, but they still have to be painted in this picture:

The play-house

To paint them I moved them into the shed:

Helping hand

I had great help holding the boards and tools from my son. Now some of them are back up, but as I can’t paint them all at once and now the cold came there are still some waiting to get done.

As the snow stayed I also built a snow-igloo for our daughter this afternoon. It’s kind of hard work playing in the snow. Here she sits inside enjoying the candle I put in as light:

Snow-igloo

That’s all for now; Enjoy the snow and drive safe.

My legs hurt

I did it. Today everything was right. Our son didn’t sleep before it was too short for him to sleep before we have to pick up his sister from preschool. It was dry outside and I was in the mood. So I packed our son in the trailer for the bicycle and off we went, to pick up his sister by bicycle.

I had checked the route and it gave me a hint that it wouldn’t be easy. Back and forth along the small backroads, I won’t take the main road, it’s not safe. It should be about 8 km, and more than 50 meters up and down. It turned out to be a bit longer and the last part the wind came straight against me.

Our daughter was happy that I picked her up with the bicycle. Her brother slept on the way there. On the way home I had some time to make pictures.

We live in an electricity producing area; there are wind turbines all over the place.

Wind turbines

As I got a bit tired I had to make a few short brakes, just to rest my legs and arms.

Taking a break

Just before we come home I have to lift/drag all of us across this old stone wall. It is hard to imagine that I can get both bicycle and trailer through the shrubs behind the wall, but the path is wide enough.

Crossing of the wall

Doing the pickup this way made the day feel shorter. (A good thing when one has to entertain a 1 and a 4 year old kid). It was fun to actually go somewhere and not just going back and forth along our little road we live at. I just love bicycling.

On the downside I realised in how bad shape I am. Okay, the wind was against me, but 8.5 km in just short of 40 minutes, that’s not good. I will have to do this on a regular basis to get back in to some kind of shape again. It would do me good. So I will try to do it at least once a week, as long as it isn’t raining, I’m comfortable that way and dirt roads just aren’t fun to be on when wet. I won’t do it with too much snow either, who knows how well the snow is cleared off the small backroads.

Now I will try to sleep, my legs are killing me.

Bicycling with kids again

Now I’ve done it (or actually last week some time).

Made the first bicycling trip with our son. One afternoon I crammed both of them into the trailer and bicycled a few round in the neighbourhood. They seemed to enjoy it.

Kids in bicycle trailer

We have to do it more in the future. Someday I might even pick up our daughter from the day care by bicycle. To avoid the big road I will have to take a trip more than three kilometres longer than by car. There is a long term plan to build a bicycle path along the big road, but who knows when that actually will be built.

Getting things done

 

Now I’ve been home for one month. Time has gone really fast. It’s already October. And the weather has been on my side. Plenty of days with sunshine and some kind of warm feeling in the air. So much that my daughter has asked me if we could go swimming a few times. Today I was actually contemplating it after my digging up the garden session. Didn’t happen though. We did go for a walk as family in the afternoon. It is really nice doing that. In Norway they call it “gå på tur” (walk a “tour”) and it’s all about getting out in the nature. Today we went west from our place along the shore of Ringsjön. It was a bit tricky the last bit.

Here are some pictures from the walk:

The end in the shrubs

This was as the path we chose. No, it’s not really a visible path. Didn’t get much further than this.

Low water levels

Due to the low water level the shore was further out (behind the reed) leaving us fairly dry on our walk.

Western Ringsjön

A view of western Ringsjön, most of these rocks are below water normally.

I have been doing a few projects around the house. I mentioned the digging of the garden before, but there is pruning of trees too, fixing some shelfs for our books and ground painting the playhouse. Pruning the bushes in front of the house was very satisfying. The result is clearly visible.

Busch before and after

Not all projects went the way I wanted them to: I wanted to take care of some rust on our car, but as I started up the grinding tool it died on me. And it was brand new. So no fixing of car was possible and that frustrated me a bit. So I “grabbed” my family and we dragged our canoe to the lake and we made our first (very short) canoe trip. It was a bit windy and our son was tired so we didn’t get that far out.

Our canoe

The canoe after the trip. I have to remember to take a picture with us in it next time we do this.

Western Ringsjön after canoeing

We only stayed inside the rocks visible in the picture; the waves were a bit high for us canoeing amateurs.

 

Wildlife is cruel

One night we forgot to close the screen doors of our outdoor room. As we had been eating in there before we got a little friend helping us to clean up the floor. It was really effective. (Our son is good at eating but he is throwing the leftovers on the floor when he is done, I guess that’s normal for a one year old).

Hedgehog in our outdoor room

I really like the hedgehogs; they are nice animals, to look at from a distance. Don’t want to pluck out spikes after touching them.

Our cats are really nice ones. If I sit on the couch watching television they always come and get cosy. They are still a bit scared of our kids and I think that might be wise if you don’t want your tail to be pulled, especially when it comes to our son. They have decided that the couch is their favourite spot, most of the time (as long as the kids aren’t too close) you’ll find them like this.

Milo and Siam in the couch

When our son is sleeping they actually come and lay beside him sometimes. That is nice. They are gone faster than a lightning when he wakes up though.

They are really good hunters too. They from time to time (now a bit more seldom) come with “gifts” for us. Most of the rodents they catch they eat themselves. But they are a bit picky sometimes, leaving some intestines on the rug as a not so pleasant surprise walking to the shower in the dark in the mornings. Just the other day, (or maybe a week ago) they had left somethings that looked like intestines again, but this time it was no less than 6 mouse foetuses, four of which still in the uterus. I don’t know why they didn’t eat that, but as my brother has had a similar experience before it might be intentional.

They really are a threat to the small animals around our house. We like them to kill the rodents, but sometimes they kill small birds too (and a rabbit) and that isn’t really as nice. My brother saw Siam catch a bird that was trapped in our outdoor room. I just saw him walk away with the bird in his mouth. There still was one other bird in the outdoor room, panicking of course, so I opened a window and let it out before it would have been the next victim of the feline killing machines.

Some reflections on the first weeks

I have been home with the kids for almost two weeks now and I think things are going good so far. Most times I went shopping with only our son, but yesterday we went all three of us. That’s more of a challenge, but with the arrangement below it went really nice. Except for the last 5 minutes when our son fell asleep. Not the best place to fall asleep. He did wake up as soon as we left the store and didn’t sleep until late in the afternoon.

Our daughter and son in the shopingcart at the store

Sleeping during the daytime is a bit of a challenge too (for our son, or maybe for me getting him to sleep). It seems like it is easier for him to get to peace than it was for our daughter though. So far he has slept a while every day. The best time is when our daughter is at preschool, right after lunch. Then I will have some time to fix things here without having him to watch out for. It is also good as he then will be tired in the evening when we want him to sleep. Some days that’s just not possible, luckily our daughter can amuse herself long enough for me to get him to rest the days she is at home or when he didn’t sleep before we picked her up again.

We have had a great harvest of plums this year. (Last year we didn’t realize that we had a plumtree until the one plum fell down). This has resulted in a bunch of cakes like this one.

Plum cake

We did some other things with the plums too, like chutney and compote, really nice. The blackberries are still in the process of being harvested, so far we have made some jam, but the plan is to make sorbet out of some we already have gathered.

4 years!

Today 4 years ago our daughter was born. So I made a cake in the morning (cake for breakfast is tradition in my family at birthdays).

Cake for our daughters 4th birthdayWe were kind of hungry so I took the picture after she left for the preschool.

It is nice to celebrate her birthday again, it just is a clear mark that she is growing bigger and bigger. She got her first LEGO’s with the small pieces and she really enjoyed building it. It was fun helping her too.

Time to be a house husband again

Since today I’m a house husband. I will stay at home taking care of my kids, the kitchen and all other things connected to the house while my wife goes to work. The last two years I did the working, but now it’s Susanna’s turn again.

I have done it once before, one year, when I stayed home with our daughter, now it is time for me to take care of our son and our daughter since she only is in preschool for 15 hours a week.

Preschool started today too, so today was really a day of changes. Our daughter needs more friends to play with than we can provide here at home so preschool it is. We have gotten a place at a really nice preschool in the next village to the south from us so it’s not far away. I’m just missing the bicycle path there; otherwise I would have used the bicycle trailer most days. Now I think I might do it once or twice as I have to take backroads that are more than twice the distance. I just don’t bicycle with my kids along a main road with a speed limit of 90 km/h.

That is just one way this time will be different than last time. Living in a house changes things too. There is always something to do when taking care of kids and household isn’t enough. I doubt I will get bored. I doubt I’ll get many other things done, kids and household has a tendency to be more time-consuming than I anticipate.

Anyhow, if you have your ways by Gamla Bo, give me a call and maybe you can stop by for a cup of tea.

Inauguration of the balcony

We have now lived in our house for more than one and a half year. The house has a nice balcony on the west side with a beautiful view of the fields and woods (and lake if you know where to look) around our house. Already when we bought it we saw the potential of calm evenings on the balcony just sitting, chatting and having a nice glass of wine.

Tonight we finally did it. And for the occasion we used the Schorndorfer sparkling wine we got from our relatives during our summer Germany tour. It was just as nice as we thought it would be. (And we can sit there without a baby monitor as the window to the bedroom is not too far away and open so we hear them that way).

This is just one of the things that start coming into order now. Until this summer we have had a bit of chaos in the house and garden but now things are starting to come together. Books have been organised (there are probably more than thousand to sort out) into some kind of order, plans for the garden are made, windows are being fixed, tiles on the roof that were broken been replaced and many more things. Sure some of the fixing will never end but it has started.

The reason we inaugurated the balcony now was that one thing on our list was to clean off the moss from it and impregnate it with new oil was done this week and now it is a much nicer place. And that the kids went to bed early enough for us not to be dead tired.

This place is just such a great place to live. This year we are enjoying the fruits (so far strawberries, cherries, blackberries and plums, later apples) and some vegetables too (radishes, tomatoes, broad beans, potatoes and some red onions). The children have plenty of outdoor space to play, with our sandbox, the swings and the small children’s house that is under construction but well playable. We even got a hammock, but I’ve got to repair it now as it was old and the strings broke after a few uses.

Here are some pictures forms our place:

Our yard with the vegetable garden on the left

Our garden, with the fence to keep out rabbits and dears on the left.

Playhouse, hammock and sandbox

The playhouse, hammock and sand box, chill and fun for parents and kids.Our green island with our house on the left

This green island is our home; the house is just about visible on the left.

Lakeside sunset

short walk from our place you get to the lake, were sunsets like this one can be enjoyed (or swimming and canoeing weather dependent).

Happy Easter

Happy Easter to you all!

I know Easter is almost over but this year I’ve been busy not sitting at the computer more than short bits. The weather was some kind of typical April weather with sun, rain, hail and thunder.

My parents were here and my dad made some pictures of the highlights that I like to share:

We burnt the branches and twigs from our property. As the darkness fell the fire was really beautiful, and the full moon made it less dark.

The fire in the night with moon

On Easter Sunday our daughter and I prepared the Easter eggs.

Prepairing Easter-eggs

Later that day we had the egg-hunt in the garden. To find them there was some climbing involved.

Daughter on the rocks finding an egg

The new wheelbarrow was a great success. Now she can help when we have to move things around the property.

Trying the new wheelbarrow on our front lawn

5 Years

Five years ago she said YES. The best person in my life stood beside me at the altar and said yes. It was wonderful then. It is wonderful now! It has been wonderful between then and now.

You and me, Susanna and I at our wedding

Imagine that this great woman found me! And what a journey we are on. Life with her is a ride better than any you could find.

Susanna you are the best thing that has happened to me. You are the Milky Way on the clear winter sky. The soft breeze at the beach. I love to hear your voice. I just long to see you every time I’m away from you.

Picutres of our great journey

We have already been through many things. Made some big changes together, enjoyed life, worked our way through difficulties and had two great kids. I’m looking forward to all the things that are to come.

Picutres of Susanna

Today we are celebrating our wooden wedding. The traditional gift would have been silverware. I doubt that we need more silverware. Life is a dream with you. Sometimes I wonder when I will wake up. Then I realise that this is all very real. I just hope I cherish it as much as I should.

Picutres of our dream life

And it has begun…

You who know us know that one of the reasons we moved out on the countryside was the fact that we want animals. In the long run we dream about having both chicken and sheep. I don’t know how long it will take until we are there. For the sheep we will need some extra land so the chicken are probably closer in time.

So before Christmas we finally got up the birdfeeder. It’s a start. So now the birds are able to get some seeds when the stock is short in nature. Not that it is this year, but we didn’t move to Skåne for the winter.

The birds really like the place. Most of the time the small ones are there, but in between crows come and raid the place too. Then we have to fill the feeder with new seeds. The pheasants are also finding the seed fallen down on the ground and once we saw a woodpecker too.

Pictures of the birds: How many kinds can you see?Collage of Birds And today things became even more serious; we have two new family members of the feline kind, Milo and Siam. A friend of ours couldn’t keep them anymore and asked if someone would like to take them over. We really wanted cats too. It is a start when you want to have animals and they are nice having around too. And it’s good to have them around when you have kids so they will learn how to interact with animals. Our daughter ran herself tired the first day excited about the fellas that came to our place and tried to figure us out. When she was asleep they were less reserved and Siam sat in Susanna’s lap for a while.

Here are some pictures of them today: (Milo is the black one, he is a bit more reserved than Siam).

A collage of Siam and Milo

Much needed break

This autumn has been crazy. We all have been under a lot of stress here at home and I’ve been working much and traveling with work too.

Anyhow…

sometime this summer we decided we need a break this autumn. We want to see our friends and family in Stockholm some time again. So we planned to take a week off in November to go there and visit everybody. We had no clue of how hard times were ahead of us.

Then time flew. Like it always does. We hadn’t planned anything real and one weekend when we just realised it was all too much. We need some time as a family, just the four of us. So just before we had planned to book the tickets to Stockholm we decided not to. We started looking for an alternative. Staying home was not an option as there are so many things to do here so I wouldn’t have been a vacation that way.

Last week we did it. We left our little house in Skåne for a smaller house on Lolland, that’s a Danish island not too far away. Five nights away doesn’t seem like much, but it did great! I think the best part of it was that there was no internet there and as we are cheap we didn’t pay for roaming on our phones either. We had all the time together. Except for a few short trips to the village to get groceries, trips that would have been so much longer and trickier taking the kids along.

We played games. Sat in front of the fireplace. Enjoyed each other’s company. Relaxed in the bubblepool and sauna, no really it was relaxing, even the time my three year old was in it with me. Made some simple food, it tasted great. Got fresh bread from the baker a few mornings. Had a walk on the beach. Made a trip to the zoo and to Germany.

Not everything was perfect. I wish we hadn’t gotten colds, except Susanna, she was spared. I wish we had started cleaning out the place an hour earlier this morning. We made it out before the owner came though. I wish I had understood how the fire stove worked, now it was a bit of an ordeal to get it burning. (Maybe the wood was a bit too wet).

In total it was great! I always have said that the best time for vacation is in November. Even staying in this area of ever grey weather is better with a break than just chugging along. Just have a break. I warmly recommend it and my family does it too.

Sorry all of you friends in Stockholm that would have loved to see us. Most of you didn’t know what you missed as we hadn’t made appointments yet. There will be another time. We just don’t know when.

Sometimes I’m crazy

Sometimes I do crazy things. Like today. I biked to work. All the way. It ended up being 58 km. I took a wrong turn at least twice. The entire trip took me 2 hours and 45 minutes. Not too bad as I haven’t biked much this last year. Now I only have to get the bicycle back home.

I love biking to work. It’s so liberating. I get to enjoy the great outdoors in the morning. Sunrise is a wonderful thing. Today it was hidden in the clouds, but the clouds left and the sun started to shine.

I just live too far from work to do it on a regular basis. I won’t bike when the weather is bad or if I already biked once that week. It would just take too much of my free time. But if I do it twice a month I should be satisfied.

Now the bike will get some new parts, a bunch of the gears just don’t work anymore and the chain is stretched. Then it will be an even more pleasurable experience.

Summer is a short thing,

even if it’s eight weeks long.

Collage with picutres of the Summer of 2014

Somehow this summer has passed really fast. Sure summer isn’t really over yet but as I this week started work after the vacation/parental leave it somehow feels like it. It has been an exciting summer. So many things have happened. Still it also has been a slow summer, not doing even one overnight trip, only staying at home. (Except for the few nights when we were at the hospital for Gabriel’s birth in the beginning).

Ah, there you have the name of our son too: Gabriel. We had a hard time to decide, so it ended with us drawing sticks. We had two names, equally nice, but both of us had a different one as favourite. But if we get another son some day we have a name for him.

Most of the summer has been about taking care of our kids and getting food on the table. A few other things have been made though.

I fixed the lawn-tractor. It wasn’t that hard and now cutting the grass isn’t hard labour but fun labour. I think I’m becoming more of a mechanic as I live here, I kind of like fixings things.

I built some mosquito-nets for our bedroom and work-room and with the help of dad the guest room too. (My parents wanted to sleep there and it was warm so a mosquito-net was not a luxury). The one for the work-room I like the most, as it is a door.

We have made it to the beach twice. Once as a family and once with my parents but without Susanna and our son as a day on the beach isn’t the best thing for a new-born. We did go for a swim in our local lake a few times too, it’s just a five minutes’ walk so it really isn’t a big deal.

Our garden isn’t really giving that much produce, we haven’t really taken care of it as we should. But still; we have potatoes; we will have carrots and some beans. Three of our apple-trees have apples, so we will have apples too, (actually I baked an apple-cake with apples from one of the trees yesterday that we had at work today). Our blackberry-bush is having plenty of berries and they ripen over a long time, it now has given us a few portions with ice-cream and a pie, but there is much more on the bush. The only downside with the blackberries is that they have so many thorns and that makes picking them a bit painful. (We haven’t taken care of it the right way this spring).

We have spent some time with family and relatives. My parents have visited twice, Susanna’s a few more times, and we visited Susanna’s parents too (Susanna and the kids stayed over there one night even). We had a few friends visiting, been to the zoo in Höör with friends and have visited friends for a few hours, so it has been things going on even if we had to time it with our sons feeding, leaving us less punctual than usual.

Now I’m back at work. This first week has been calm, as most people still are on vacation. It is fun though; I’m working on a project where I will simulate railway traffic and I really enjoy that.

Now it’s weekend!

 

And he was born!

This morning at 10.53 our baby boy was born in Ystad after only 1 1/2 hours at the hospital. He was 48 cm long and his weight was 3175 g. Now we are resting.

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Mother and son.