New Year what will you bring?

As most of you noticed a new year has started. (Sure in some areas it hasn’t started yet or it had started a bit earlier than here, but I’m thinking of us living in the part of the world where time is related to the birth of Christ).

Some years are just normal years. The last one was that in some way. Normal years are good, they give you time to reflect on life. No real life changing thing happened. As far as I know anyhow. (Some of the life changing things have the tendency to first show themselves after some time).

Will 2013 be a normal year again, or will it bring big change? I don’t know. There are things brewing, but nothing is actually planned.

A few things are more certain:

  • I will go back to work. (Just the date is not decided yet).
  • Our daughter will turn two. (She actually turns 16 months today).
  • We will travel to Skåne a few times, the first trip to see my cousin in law become a priest in the Church of Sweden.
  • Our daughter will learn so many more things.

None of these things will qualify this year as non-normal.

I just hope I can make the most of every moment of this year anyway. I have started out good I think. Like today, when I took our daughter for a ride in the bicycle wagon to go shopping despite the snow. (You who know me know that I like bicycling in the snow). After dinner tonight I also took a few rounds down the slope beside our house on the snowracer. I think I might enjoy it more than her, but she likes it too. Now the snow is really fast so we have to turn around the house to not go through the thorn bushes and down the steep slope into the nature reserve (that contains plenty of trees before ending in the lake Mälaren, that isn’t frozen over here so far).

This morning I saw this post on facebook where there were 45 good advices given by a 90 year old lady named Regina Brett. I looked it up, since I liked the advice given and found out it wasn’t a 90 year old lady after all giving the advice and it wasn’t only 45 but five more. But it is good advice anyway so I shared it there, and I share it here too:

I think I might print them and post them on my board here at home.

The other day as I was bicycling home from church I went by a little group of people that were taking photos. I thought that one of them looked familiar, but she lives a bit away nowadays so I thought it is just someone similar. Then when I glanced through her blog the other day, I recognised a picture taken at the spot I bicycled by. I should have stopped and said hi. (And here is the link to that blogpost:

After Susanna proofread this post she said she wanted to show me a thing. We had the book that Regina Brett wrote on the 50 advices standing in our shelf (translated to Swedish). Now I have a new book to read.

This is it folks!

I think 2012 will in my mind be remembered as a year with much joy in the everyday life.

It hasn’t been a year of big things like the year before (when we had our daughter) but of many small things.


Our daughter learning many new things to our and her joy. (This could be a long list in itself).

Star daughter

Having a few short vacations to Germany.

Having a nice summer vacation driving around Sweden.

Susanna and Johannes walk with Ellinor

Having my brother coming over much more than before. (See his homepage for updates:

Being home with our daughter (that will continue well into 2013 too).

A few business trips to Gothenburg and Malmoe.

A beautiful snowy December.

Afternoon sun in the snow

Now it’s coming to an end. I’m writing this while our daughter is playing with the pens on my desk, right after our New Year’s dinner. It has been a good year. I have learned new things about myself. I have learned to enjoy new things.

I’m so happy to share this year with my family. Susanna is the best wife I could ever have found. Our daughter is just the cutest there is. We enjoy our company and like doing things together. Basically most things we do together end up being fun. Even fairly boring things like shopping for food.

Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you all!

Here is our Christmas card for you:

Christmas card 2012

I wish you all have a wonderful time with family and friends in great fellowship, good food and much joy!

This year we stayed home for Christmas, having my parents and my brother for Christmas Eve and Christmas day, Susanna’s parents are coming on the 3rd to have a second Christmas with us then.

It is lovely to see how our daughter for the first time really enjoyed the feast. The joy she had opening presents, (she started with the small ornamental ones we had put in the tree) and later playing with her new toys. This really makes giving fun.

Now it is time to rest until it is time for sound on Sunday.

The perfect Friday night dinner?

Today I think I made the perfect Friday night dinner. You decide for yourself if you agree.

Take one day of perfect Friday with beautiful snow and sunshine.

Blend with a bicycle ride and a nice walk through the forest.

Afternoon sun in the snow

Blackebergsbacken in snow

Prepare a sourdough-sunflower-seed bread in time (in the morning) for part of it becoming the buns for the dinner.

While the daughter is sleeping (after a short stay at the open preschool) start making the last preparations for the bread.

Buns being prepared

Take it easy for a little while.

Make dinner; the task for today was; it should have bacon in it.

Form burgers from minced meat.

Burgers being prepared

Bake the buns.

Buns ready

Put french-fries in the oven.

Fry burgers.

Fry bacon.

Have your wife come home.

Take french-fries out of the oven.

Prepare lettuce and other assembly details.

Put the rest of the bread into the oven.

Assemble the burgers.

Serve with beer.



Don’t forget to take out the bread before it is black. (As a good dinner takes a while it might be in the middle of it).

Now let the weekend begin!

One month and counting

Now I’ve been home with our daughter for one month. Time has passed really fast. Somehow I haven’t had one full week alone with her anyway. The first two weeks fully planned, as Susanna only worked 60 % then, then a long weekend in Germany shortened two more weeks, and now this last week Susanna got sick and stayed at home for two days. So I still have to cope with the first five days week ahead.

Last Friday was a new record though. Susanna had some thing at her work with dinner attached to it. She left right about eight and didn’t come home until half past 11 at night, that’s fifteen and a half hours, more than five hours longer than the longest she has been away from our daughter before. I can’t imagine how that feels. Susanna and our daughter have a special relationship, sure all mothers have that with their kids, but I think Susanna is one of the more attached kinds. I think that is good. That makes for a good caring mother.

This night was also the first time I had to get our daughter to bed by myself. I haven’t done this before. Mainly because Susanna is breastfeeding our daughter to sleep most nights (I think I know of one exception lately where Susanna and our daughter went to bed, but before the breastfeeding started our daughter just fell asleep). I’m not that good at that, due to the lack of milk-producing breast like most other men. The only way I have to get her to sleep is to walk with her in a sling. That was what I did tonight. I’m happy my winter-jacket still is large enough to cover us both as I didn’t want to put on her warm clothes as they would have been too warm in bed, or she might have woken up if I tried to take them off. (I have had that problem during the afternoon nap before).

There are a few things that have happened during this time. Our daughter has finished her second swimming-class, we have gone to the “open preschool” a few times and autumn has given us some really nice days. We did also go to Germany, see previous post, and attend a great wedding of two good friends.

Some highlights, 5 pictures showing the autumn and our daughter

This far I’m not bored or don’t know what to do with the days, actually I’m happy when I have a day without plans, as I get to take long walks with her then. (I could do long walks anyway, like today when I walked over to a friend about 50 minutes away). Walking is relaxing. Walking without direction or goal is even more so.

Now as the days have become short and it’s getting colder there are a few things that have to be done. I’m starting to tick of things of my to-do list, but somehow it’s growing faster. I don’t mind that, it just shows that I find new things I could do. Many of the things on my list aren’t that important and don’t have a deadline. I really don’t like deadlines that much, it is better to take things when the spirit is right, they go so much faster and smoother then.

That’s all for this time, now on to the next month of being at home…

Summer in October

Two weeks ago we went to Germany to celebrate dad’s birthday. We stayed at my uncle’s and we met with most relatives. It was like coming back to the summer we didn’t have here. It was so nice having a few days off. Okay, I can’t have days off like when I was working, but still it was a good break from everyday life.

Travelling with the family is always a great thing. Our daughter is easy to travel with, we always see it when we fly and she behaves in a good way.

Here a few pictures from the trip.

Our daughter at the playground in Arlanda.

Our daughter at Arlanda

Susanna and our daughter in the bus waiting to get to the terminal in Hamburg.

Susanna and our daughter at Hamburg

As the trip was short it was intense. First night there was the celebration.

Our daughter was playing with the stones lining the floor.

Playing with stones

The second day we spent mostly outside in the sun.

Some trees are just nicer than others.

Nice tree

Our daughter behaving like the star she is.

Star daughter

Temperatures were well above 20° C, barely any wind, just the way you like summer to be. Needless to say, we really enjoyed it. In the evening we had dinner with the relatives again. It was so nice to have two evenings altogether. Even my brother came, as he lives a lot closer now.

The last day we were early with packing up before going home so we had a walk in the neighbourhood. The view with the trees in autumn colours is just so nice. A cat followed us around. Our daughter really likes cats, but hasn’t really understood the fact that screaming with joy running after them isn’t the best way of getting to pet them. She’ll learn that someday. (Maybe when we get ourselves a cat too).

Nice scenery

Some different life


So, now I’ve been home with our daughter for one and a half week. I’m starting to get a hold of things. I’m starting to understand the work involved in entertaining a kid all day. I’m having a hard time thinking of easy and good food, but thanks to some of my readers I still have a few ideas that I can use.

One thing I’m realising is that no day is like the other. One day I’m getting all the signals right and I don’t have to change one used diaper. Other days I’m missing all of them. (She has been using the potty a long time, but for safe we use diapers too). Some days I can eat in peace with her enjoying her food at a comfortable pace without too much a mess, other days she just throws things around, leaving me cleaning the floor, table, three chairs (including hers), wall, windows and sofa. I always have to clean her, sometimes less, sometimes more, then I just put her into the shower.

It is amazing how she has become so much more attached to me. She now comes over to me and wants to be lifted up while I’m cooking even when Susanna is at home. That didn’t happen before. I’m getting stronger in my left arm; it’s kind of tricky to cook with only the right arm free, but doing it with the left is even trickier. I do have to put her down for some task and she does somehow understand it too, but as soon as I’m done with the thing that made me put her down in the first place she’s back between my legs almost trying to climb up.

I thought the hardest thing would be not meeting people all day. And I think it is. I’m trying to get out every day, some days for some shopping, others for some activity (we have her swimming once a week now), or just to go to the playground or to the open preschool. Later, when Susanna is working full time I will come and visit her at work too.

Sleep is a bit of a problem still. I can get her to sleep, but it requires a long walk or bicycle tour. I have to time it right and have to be on the move for at least half an hour. Then she maybe sleeps for one hour, but if I stop it’s not sure that she continues to sleep. Twice she did sleep a while after I got home, but every other time she woke up.

This last weekend was beautiful, so we had a little walk around our house:

Beautiful weekend

As I was writing Susanna was looking at some toy-car-thingy: (She didn’t look at that page I’m sure of, because I couldn’t fine the film she was looking at there. It had a song as soundtrack; see film below; which made me remember a walk I made midsummer 2004. I made a walk in my neighbourhood that night, thinking of how my life was. Back then I was just doing the last parts of my master-thesis. This was a period in my life when I had lost myself. I felt like I wanted to run from everything. I was thinking I should move to a new place and start over. I just knew I wouldn’t get rid of the feeling anyway. It felt hopeless. Still I had many things I was really happy about. I had a few good friends and I really looked forward to visit my brother later that summer.

[embedit snippet=”not-gonna-get-us”]


Here are a few pictures from that walk:

Midsummer walk 2004

After looking at those pictures I started looking at other old pictures. O have I changed. I showed some of them to Susanna, I think she is really happy I have changed. I’m happy too. I found myself again. Now I have a happy family and the feeling of wanting to run from it all just doesn’t come anymore. I live so much more right here, right now. I think that’s the only way of living taking care of a child.

Some more music reference there if you want:

[embedit snippet=”right-here-right-now”]

Full time parent

Now I’m officially on parental leave. We have a great opportunity here in Sweden where we can stretch it to relatively long times. I will be home for at least half a year, but probably longer.

I have actually not worked since Wednesday, as I had worked some extra hours during the summer making it possible for me to take Thursday and Friday off. Having four days all three of us was really nice. On Friday we all went into town and had my parents over in the afternoon. They really love being with us, especially our daughter. She likes them too; she brought almost every one of her books to my dad and he read them to her.

On Saturday we did a little excursion to Drottningholm with our bicycles. That is always nice. We looked at the sheep, gees and tourists walking around the park.

Today was the first day I was home with her alone. I didn’t know how it would be. I couldn’t even imagine it before. Would I be able to take care of her in a good way? Would there be time to do all the things I wanted and had to do? Would I be able to comfort her when she was missing her mother? Today it all went fine. I think anyway. And I even had time for a shower. (With my daughter playing with the shower curtain at the same time).

The hardest thing was to comfort her when she was longing for her mother. She walked over to the door and sat down crying for a little while. I picked her up and talked to her, after a few minutes she stopped crying and started playing again.

She is just so cute when she talks her own little language. I wish I knew what she is saying. I think she wishes we knew too.

One thing we didn’t do during the day was taking a nap. She does need a nap during the day. Today she took the nap at 6 in the evening, making it hard for her to get to rest now while I’m writing this.

So this was the first day. Now there will be many more to come. Tomorrow we will go swimming and we will do that a few more Tuesdays. I don’t have that much planned. I should have the dinner of this week planned, but I still lack a vegetarian meal on Thursday, so if you have a good idea that isn’t oven-roasted vegetables give me a hint.

Happy Birthday Ellinor!

Today is your first birthday, you might not think so much about it, but you have lived in this world for one year now.

One day you will understand the fuzz about it and enjoy the special things we do for you on your birthday. You might even understand this text if we do some things right. Today you just enjoyed the cake, pancake cake with raspberry jam, strawberries, chocolate and whipped cream, the new toys and your parent attention.

It feels like yesterday, the day when you came. It was a beautiful day, a bit strange, maybe because of the fatigue. I just loved you the moment I saw you, just like I love you today.

At first I didn’t know what to do. I was scared. But then, when I could hold you to my chest all that disappeared. Today a year later you are greater than ever. Now you walk, enjoy food and like moving things to new spots.

I’m so happy you take us on this journey. I couldn’t imagine half the things I have seen happening this year. Some were hard, some fun and some just plain. Still even the plain things are special.

I’m so happy when I get home and I hear your voice, “papapapapa”. When you give things to me, even if it’s a half eaten piece of pasta.

Here are some memories:

When you just were born.

Enjoying our first trip together.

Visiting our relatives in Germany.

Sitting in the bicycle trailer

Eating your birthday cake.

Opening your birthday gift.

And some film too:

A small film form you when you were one half year old.

[embedit snippet=”%c2%bd-year-old-ellinor”]

A film of you walking over to your wagon.

[embedit snippet=”moving-things-on-her-one-year-day”]

I’m so looking forward to being your dad for many years to come and for the time we get together when I’m home taking care of you that starts soon.

She walks

Today was the day. Our daughter has started to walk. Now she walks from one place to another without holding our hands. (Holding our hands is still the preferred way of getting around though).

Susanna sent me an sms at lunch where she told me that our daughter had walked about 1.5 meters. I didn’t think I would see her walk in the evening, but I was wrong. She now does walk, not that far so far, but still 1 meter here, two meters there and oh she’s over there now.

We do have another concern though. She has started climbing. I think it might even be one of her favourite things to do. We have a small stool with a step. Two days ago she made it up to the table as the stool stood in front of it. Today she just went up and down a few times, (we have moved it away from the table to the piano).

Our daughter after climbing up the stool:

By the way; Toro I owe you a beer.

Our rocking daughter

I just have to share this:

[embedit snippet=”our-daughter-rocking”]

First time Susanna sat her there she did this, now I finally managed to get it on film.

Today Susanna was away for almost five hours, that’s a new record for being away from our daughter for her. I met up with Susanna at her work and biked home with our daughter. We had a great time, but once every now and then she was longing for her mother.

Soon it’s my turn to take care of her all day, just one more month.


How to get wet and enjoy it.

How to get wet:

Work half an hour longer than planned. (I wanted to start a simulation before leaving).

  • Get yourself on a bicycle.
  • Move towards the dark clouds.
  • Don’t stop and put on a raincoat.
  • Don’t even bring one.
  • Continue biking.
  • As the rain starts: Don’t take a break under a bus stop.
  • Continue even as the water rises on the road. (In this case about 1 cm).
  • Drive close to cars, they splash some on you.
  • Drive through the river that comes down from Blackeberg. (It used to be a road).

If you aren’t wet by now, you might be water-repellent.

As I got home only the back of my underwear was still dry. Probably the spot I was sitting on. Luckily I have the best wife there is: She handed me a towel as soon I entered the door at home.

Now how to enjoy it:

  • Don’t regret biking home half an hour later than planned.
  • Don’t stop under a bus stop, you might stay there all night.
  • Let it be summer, or at least above 15°C.
  • See it as an adventure.
  • Switch on the lights. You really don’t want some car rear-ending you.
  • Don’t stop. You get cold standing still.
  • Feel everything getting heavier. It’s a funny feeling if you think about it.
  • Enjoy the squeaking sound wet shoes make.

Today I managed well. I followed all the points above and I really enjoyed it. I might not be wearing the same shoes to work tomorrow though.

On a totally different note: My daughter does not really walk yet, she has done a few steps on her own, but she does want us to hold her hands while walking to not fall over. Sometimes that even doesn’t help. As soon as that changes I’ll let you know.

Weekend of doing

Yesterday I woke up at about eight. And I went up right away. Our daughter was awake and needed to go to the pot. So I told Susanna I could do it, I didn’t feel like sleeping anyway.

(All this is not something I usually like to do on a Saturday morning. I love to sleep in, maybe to ten if possible and then take a slow day).

As I prepared for breakfast, that included taking care of Friday’s dishes due to Friday night laziness I got the urge to bake. But I did have a few more things on my to-do list for the day. I have had this urge a few times the last weeks but I felt this could be the day I actually did it.

So I grabbed the day the best way I could. I started cleaning a bit in the apartment. My part of cleaning the apartment is the bathroom. I don’t like vacuuming and Susanna doesn’t really care for cleaning the bathroom so that comes naturally. (I am the one cleaning the windows too, but that hasn’t happened for more than a year, maybe if I get one more weekend of doing I start with that).

When I was done with that I went shopping. One needs yeast to bake buns.

I started the grill and put Susanna in charge of it, leaving her and our daughter out in the nice weather while I prepared the rest and started baking.

Lunch was good. After lunch I brought down the little tub for our daughter to bath in. She loves bathing!

A friend came over and the buns got ready as I took care of some laundry. Somehow having cloth-diapers result in plenty of laundry.

At this point I felt I was done with the day. We had fresh buns for dinner that was really nice. After dinner our friend left and I just took it easy. As I was sitting in front of the TV in the evening during Susanna’s try to get our daughter to sleep I remembered the flowers so I watered them.

Later Susanna and I watched the first part of a film together. We’ll watch the second half some other day.

Susanna didn’t understand where all my energy came from. Neither do I. Some days are just like that. I wake up and think; “today I’ll do this and that” and I just do it. Most days I just think it, but some days I actually do them. Saturday was a perfect example of that.

Days like that are rare. I did really enjoy it. I did some fun things too. Like baking or playing with our daughter in the water. But the enjoyment came for the entire thing not just the fun things.

Today was busy too. I had sound at church; I start before eight with switching the system on and before I shut it down again it normally is about three thirty in the afternoon. Today we had a toddler’s picnic afterwards. I wasn’t home until just before six.

At that point I was tired. I dozed off in the sofa in front of the TV.

I don’t know what triggers this kind of energy that made me do all these things. I wish I did, because I need to be more effective in my everyday life. If I had weekends like this one every weekend we could look out our windows without thinking about the fact that they are in desperate need of cleaning. There wouldn’t be any shirts hanging in the hall waiting for me to iron them. I would have sold my collection of Donald Duck books a long time ago (the Swedish version). And many other things I need to do.

I will try to rest on the Sundays that I don’t have sound though. I believe that resting is very important. But maybe resting is not just the absent of doing things but the doing of something else. Maybe I find out this week that I really need some rest now. (I do sit in front of a computer all day at work maybe that is resting too).

Someone wants to walk

My daughter has a new thing going on. She wants to walk. Bumping is just not good enough anymore. (Bumping is explained in the post of How to not feel rejected).

We realized yesterday that she was a bit grumpy. Didn’t really know why at first. She didn’t need to go to the potty, (yes she does most of her business there), she didn’t want to get a snack from Susanna and she didn’t want to play with some toys she shouldn’t like cables.

As soon as Susanna or I held out my hands, she grabbed them, pulled herself up and started walking. Before she just would have bumped to her spot, but not yesterday. It was walking day!

After a while she did let go of our fingers, only to lose balance and we had to catch her to not hit her head or worse.

Just a few days ago walking with her was an easy thing, I could steer her the way I wanted. Yesterday she started complaining when I steered away for a room she shouldn’t enter. She then very decisive led us to the little pool we have had put up in the garden. She wanted to bathe.

She really practises standing. First holds both hands, then one, then just something else, like my leg or a table, then nothing, plumps. Stretch out arms to someone to get pulled up again.

I don’t know how I feel about it. I know she will learn to walk eventually, but she really doesn’t have to start so early. (Sure there are kids that start earlier). With her walking around, climbing will evidently come soon too. More things have to be child-proofed. More than one pair of shoes has to be bought. Cables protected. Flowers moved. (She likes digging in flowerpots). And she will be even faster from one room to the other. With bumping I can look away for a few seconds and I still have a chance to find her again.

Here is a picture of my daughter walking with Susanna and one of her walking with me

Susanna and Johannes walk with Ellinor

There are some things that will be better as soon as she walks by herself.

Our backs will be lest bent. If she holds my pinkie fingers I can walk with an almost strait back, but normally she grabs some other fingers first and it’s a bit hard to change fingers while she is holding on like it was for life.

We won’t have to follow her everywhere. We do have places where she can go by herself. It is comfortable to just sit down in one place and let her explore without one having to walk with her all the time. Bumping had the same pro, maybe even better due to the slower speed.

So let the betting begin: When will she walk by herself for the first time? I’ll buy the winner a beer. (Winner is the one guessing the date closest to the actual day here in the comment field. In case of a draw I’ll have to buy two (or more) beers. Susanna and I will be the undisputable judges of this contest).

How to not feel rejected

My daughter is just a few days short of 10 months old. She isn’t speaking in a way that is understandable except for us if we pay attention and it still is mostly just guessing. She doesn’t walk by herself. She just today sat up from lying without help, twice actually. (We’ve been dreading that day, because now we can’t just put her down and she stays within a short distance of that place, but can get up and bump around all over).

Bumping is her second preferred way to get around, sitting on her but and wiggling getting around at astonishing speeds. Her first preferred way to get around is to grab some ones fingers, preferably Susanna’s or mine, stand up and start walking.

Anyway: She really shows that it is mom that is important. She doesn’t even have to be hungry. If she is in the wrong mood she just isn’t okay with Susanna leaving. I won’t do. Nothing can (to my desperate tries so far) change that.

Like this morning when Susanna went and took a shower. She immediately bumped towards the door, starting to whine when she arrived there. When that didn’t help, I wasn’t really that awake at that point, she got a bit louder. This had the effect that I took her up. Did that help? No. So I tried to play with her. No, that wasn’t okay either. Big tears went down her cheeks. Tears on my daughter’s cheeks just are a bit tough. So I take it to the next level and give her some of her toys. Nope, that didn’t help either, she just pushed them away. I gave them back to her, she threw them away. I haven’t seen her do it that fierce before. Like she was angry. I think she was. Angry that I didn’t take her to mom. That was my task! Okay, I picked her up again, sang a bit and rocked her gently. Sometimes that helps. Not so this time. I continued doing it, she cried louder. I gave her Susanna’s phone (one of her favourite toys that she can’t play with except when nothing else helps). She threw it on the floor so hard I was afraid it broke. (It didn’t). So I gave myself a little relief and put her down in the crib. Big mistake, she started to scream at the top of her lungs. Susanna must have heard that in the shower. I picked her up again. It went on like this for a little while longer, until; we both heard the sound of a lock and door being opened. She still was crying. Susanna opened the door to our room and Ellinor really tried to wiggle her way out of my arms with her arms stretched out to Susanna. Susanna could not take her over fast enough. As soon Susanna had her she calmed down, still sobbing a bit looking at me with some kind of “why didn’t you get me to mom sooner?” view.

This took about 10 minutes. Ten horrible minutes. Not every time is as bad as this, but she time after time shows me that I’m just not good enough. I pick her up; she turns to mom and tries to escape. I hold her just short while Susanna has to fix something and she starts whining. I stay at the table with her trying to feed her and she is turning her head away. All these things just make one feel less appreciated. Sometimes she just doesn’t let me do anything, not even change the diapers.

Then it’s important to remember the other times:

Like when I come home from work. When I get in the door and say hi, I hear Susanna’s voice somewhere in the apartment; “Did you hear who came now, papa is home.” Then she has the biggest smile on her face when she sees me. If she’s on the floor she starts bumping to me at top speed.

Or when we are together as an entire family. Sitting and having a cosy time on the sofa or in the bed. She just smiles and says “papapapapa” or “mamamapa” or something else that is really cute.

Or when I play with her, taking her for walks, letting her ride my shoulders. She really shows that she loves it when I do things with her sometimes.

Once in a while she just wants me to feed her too. Not accepting food from a spoon as long as Susanna holds it, but only when I give it to her.

Sometimes we just sit in the sofa and have a good time.

She loves me. I know that for sure. She just loves Susanna more. And that is just natural. Susanna is there much more of her time. I disappear to work. She gives the food and comfort she needs to calm down in the evening. This is nothing for me to get jealous of. I know I’m important to her too. She knows it too, I’m sure of it. Thinking of all that, especially when in moments like the ones in the first part of this entry, help me to not feel rejected.

Even when I am rejected by her, I know it’s not personal; it’s just there is someone that is more important to her. That is good. Susanna has to be more important right now. Later that can change. It doesn’t have to, I’m okay with being number 2, later I might even become number 3 or less, who knows. As long as I am the best father I can, in my eyes I’m good enough for her and she is always my lovely daughter.

2011 in pictures

It’s about time. I finally got my picture-documentation of 2011 ready.

It was a year with many things happening but not as many pictures taken. Still I have managed to put together a little resume like the previous years.

A little preview:

From winter,

from trips,

a few trains,

and of course us.

Here comes the link to the page: 2011 in pictures


Ellinor’s first bike-ride

Today was a special day. On Thursday, Susanna bought Ellinor a bicycle-helmet. Today we tried it out.

This afternoon we installed the seat in the bike-trailer. Now we can go for bike-rides all three of us. This will be great, so much better than to walk and take the bus or subway.

Afterward we had a little short test; we took a short trip of a few hundred meters to try it out. Ellinor seemed to be okay with it. I just have to be more careful crossing speed-bumps and curbs. Her head with the helmet on wiggled a bit much.

Here a picture of us when we got back in.

So many things have happened the last month. Ellinor eats more and more of the same food we eat. Sure we have to chop it up, but some things she eats whole. I don’t really know what her favourite is, but she really likes potatoes and tomatoes.

Her technique to move around has been perfected. Now she can get around the entire flat. We really have to be watchful, just looking away a short moment and she’s in boxes or pulling cables. Luckily her technique of moving around has the pro that a standing chair is a barrier she can’t get past, but for how long? We have started to remove things from floor-level; some things remain to be removed still. We don’t want to take all things away; she has to learn that some things just are not to play with and some things we just can’t remove; the electric outlets, luckily they are protected so that small fingers can’t get hurt. We don’t want her to learn that it’s okay though, one day she might get to an outlet that isn’t protected and we don’t want an accident then.

A short film of Ellinor eating tomatoes:

[embedit snippet=”ellinor-eating-tomatoes-2012-06-09″]

When I get home from work, if she is on the floor, she looks around the corner in the cutest way, leans forward to check, not having to take two or three more hops to the front.

Travelling with our daughter


Wednesday night we got home from our trip to Germany. This was the first time abroad for Ellinor. We flew to Frankfurt, took the train to Stuttgart where my uncle met with us to take us to his place.


One thing I realised travelling with her is that I can relax more than when I’m travelling alone or just with Susanna. I don’t know why that is, probably it’s because I have a different focus now.


Flying with Ellinor is easy. She does not cry much and enjoys playing with simple toys. After a while she wanted to sit on the floor, but that was not possible on the short (2 hour) flights. We found some really good seats (for us) on the plane that goes between Stockholm and Frankfurt, the row in front of the emergency exit has only two seats, so we didn’t bother anybody else there and there is an open space between the seat and window where we could put things that were in the way otherwise.


In Germany we met with all our relatives there. First we stayed in Lorch, a small town about 40 km east of Stuttgart were one of my uncles lives. There we met with the relatives on my father’s side.

A picture of the group in Lorch.


Ellinor had everyone’s attention from the start. She charmed all of us with her best mood and fun sounds. She has started to make more sounds again, some of them sound like mama and papa and lampa (lamp in Swedish).

Ellinor had everyone’s attention.


We had one day with better weather so Susanna, Ellinor and me went on a walk. (I had done this walk already on Sunday). It was really nice to get out into the fresh air, Ellinor really enjoyed it too, but that’s normal if you don’t have to walk by your own.

Klotzenhof, the furthest point of our walk.


Most days we had a busy schedule. We wanted to see as many people as possible. We tried dinner at a restaurant too. Not entirely a success. Ellinor does get tired in the evenings so Susanna, Ellinor and I had to leave before everyone else so that we could get her to bed.

Ellinor is a Schwab. (A person from Schwaben, the region in Germany where my dad comes from. In this region Pretzels are staple food).


After a week in Lorch it was time to get to the next place, this time my aunt with family in Hagenhill, a small village near Ingolstadt. I hadn’t been there for a long time and Susanna hadn’t met them before since they didn’t make it to our wedding.


The drive there was not as relaxing as one could wish for. Ellinor didn’t feel well so we had to make plenty of stops. I think it could be the fact that we took some smaller roads there and that it was lunchtime for her that made her upset. If driving with her is this bad every time it just isn’t fun. (But it wasn’t).


We had a great time there, catching up and getting to know each other. Here the days were a lot less crammed with activities so we got some well needed rest.

Ellinor playing in Hagenhill.


Here our car really did fit in, since this family only has BMWs (when it comes to cars, they have a bus and a tractor too), could be because the husband of my aunt worked there before.


The last day we went to my other aunt that just had returned from India. We had a nice day with her too. We had a walk through the nice old (more than 1000 years) town she lives in. In the evening we looked at pictures from her trip. We didn’t stay up that late this night since the next day would be a long one.

A few houses in Hersbruck.

Ellinor enjoying my aunt’s company.


The journey home started at eight in the morning. We first had to drive back to the airport in Stuttgart where we had rented the car and had the air tickets from. This is under ideal conditions a trip just under three hours. We had ideal conditions and some. Only one shorter traffic jam and a restroom stop (for me) left us time to do some last minute shopping, filling up the car and returning it in good time before twelve. Ellinor slept for most of the trip and when she didn’t she was happy with sitting in the car.


Our flight home went fine, even if the transfer time at Frankfurt was a bit short for my convenience, but hey, we didn’t have to wait at all.

Ellinor and Susanna in the plane.

My parent picked us up and drove us home, I’m so thankful for them.

I’m looking forward the next trip I make with my lovely family, they just make travelling much more fun.

Oh the joy of a beamer!

This week we are in Germany, visiting my relatives and showing Ellinor off. We arrived in Lorch (a small town about 40 km east of Stuttgart) already on Saturday but since it’s easier to rent a car on a weekday we waited till today to do so.

I had booked a car in the VW Passat size. One never knows what kind of car that will be. Last time I booked a car with proximally this size, a Chrysler Sebring we got a Dodge Journey with the smallest motor possible.

This time I hoped it would be a bit more the same size and comfort.

When I got the key I liked what I saw. It had the BMW logo on it. Not too bad for a VW. In the car-park an X1 waited for me. This is the smallest SUV from BMW but still roomy enough for us.

First I tried the backseat making sure that there would be enough space for Susanna and Ellinor. It felt okay. Getting in and adjusting everything was easy.

Driving away was nice too. Just out of the airport on to the Autobahn overtaking a few trucks, looking down on the speedometer, ups, 170 km/h. No feeling of speed in the car, I have to be careful not to drive too fast on the smaller roads.

Susanna was happy about it too, trying the backseat on the way to the store and to the dinner. Most of all she enjoyed the fact that it had Darmstadt plates, as she had stayed there when she first came to Germany.

On the way back from the dinner Ellinor fell asleep, I think she likes the car too.


Today as I came home Susanna and Ellinor went for a walk, leaving me to make dinner. It was time for chicken.

As I stood in the kitchen I realised that I hadn’t listened to music in a long time. Not in a real way, just putting on something I like and turning it up. Now with the family on a walk I decided to do so.

I put “Mind the gap” by Scooter on and played it as loud as one can in a house with apartments. (Sorry neighbours if it was a bit too loud). How liberating it is to dance together dinner instead of just cooking it.

Just before Susanna came home the CD (yes I listen to CDs still) came to an end and I put on “Dream wide awake” by Omnimotion, something more appropriate for dinner. (And something Susanna doesn’t mind listening to as we not entirely share the same taste in music).

Sitting there at the dinner table with Ellinor and Susanna made me just realise how much I miss music. There have been times in my life when I listened to music almost all the time. Then there have been times when the music has been silenced. Lately it has been very little of listening to music.

At work I have moved out into the open office. Sitting there I have not had the possibility to listen to music, especially when I’m not super busy, not to miss out on opportunities to hear conversations where I might find something extra to do or just the fact that I look really busy with headphones on making it harder for other people to ask me for help. So not much music there.

At home Susanna doesn’t listen to much music and neither do I. Most of the times I want to listen to music that she doesn’t really like. I can listen to her music, but it’s not really my favourite.

In this moment of realisation I felt so much joy. Music does that to me. Articulates feelings. The joy of having such a good life.

  • Susanna as my wife, I couldn’t find a better one!
  • Ellinor my daughter, she is just so adorable. (And really good at eating her roasted oat flour porridge with mashed fruit).
  • The beautiful place we live in.
  • Great dinner (if I may say so myself).
  • A good beer. (Old Spreckled Hen one of my absolute favourites)

And many more things that just make my life great.

It is in moments like these that music is just right.


Just one more thing:

Don’t forget to vote for your favourite Stockholm 2011 building: Here is the link

Just do it!

Half a year

Today Ellinor has her half year birthday.

This is something.

I haven’t kept you updated on my family life for a long time now. I have not really been in the mood to write most of the time and when I was I didn’t have the time. Now I have both mood and time.

So many things have happened already. She is more and more becoming a personality. Some things make her frustrated. Other things make her happy. And she really loves it when we sing.

Here comes a short little film I made yesterday and today:

[embedit snippet=”%c2%bd-year-old-ellinor”]

A film of Ellinor

It is just wonderful to see her learn new things almost every day. Just a few weeks ago she learned how to sit without support. She does tumble over every now and then still, with a complementary cry after hitting her head on the floor. Sitting with her is plenty of fun and we can play together with her toys.

Ellinor and I sitting on the floor.

She has also begun to move around. So far it’s only backwards, something she is very frustrated about. When we build her tower that she likes to tear down and she tries to get closer but it just get further and further away.

Ellinor on the floor, soon to crawl all over the place.

New Year, New Beginning

Happy New Year!

This time last year I didn’t even know I was becoming a father. Didn’t know how living with a kid would be like.

Susanna and I were thinking that it would be nice to have a kid during the year, not knowing that she already was growing in her.

Not in our wildest fantasy could we have expected a more wonderful kid than Ellinor. She is just so cute, letting us sleep at night and giving us an easy time.

A few highlights of the year:

  • The positive test on Susanna’s pregnancy.
  • The first ultrasound of Ellinor. (Link to blog entry)
  • The visit in Germany because of Ulrike’s confirmation.
  • Easter in Skåne.
  • Ellinor’s birth on the 10 of September. (Link to blog entry)
  • Friends weddings; Leigh and Andreas, Suppe and Jordana and Mattias and Amy said yes to each other.
  • Christmas in Skåne with Susanna’s family.

I will remember 2011 as a great year. Only one big change accrued, but this change was probably as big as change can be.

What will 2012 bring? Hopefully a kid that starts to walk, maybe even say a word or two. I will go on father-leave from work in September. That will give me much more time with Ellinor. I don’t hope for too many other things to be done then, but that is just not the focus of being off work then. During my father-leave Susanna will be working.

Maybe a trip or two should be possible too, nothing really far away though.

In March I will be part of a team from work skiing the “StafettVasan” a relay cross-country ski race in the track of the in Sweden famous ski-race “Vasaloppet”.

I don’t have that many other plans for the year. Maybe I will try to be more aware of injustice and lose a kilo or ten.

My year will be great! May yours be great as well!